Friday, May 31, 2013

Health & Fitness Friday!

Again, I haven't been able to do too much on the fitness front.  I was able to see my hip surgeon on Tuesday, where I got some good and bad news.  After a few x-rays and a movement analysis, he believes that I have iliopsoas tendinitis.  The 2 most common causes of this are acute injury and overuse, and I probably have both of those.  It's hard to imagine that I've been overusing my hip because I feel like I have barely run at all lately and I never returned to running the way I did before the initial surgery.  The acute injury however, could have been the surgery itself.  The surgeon did have to cut into my joint capsule and do some work inside the actual hip joint, so it makes sense that scar tissue/lingering weakness/and inflammation could be the cause.  I know it doesn't sound like good news, but it is good that the pain isn't still coming from inside the hip joint, which would indicate either another tear or that the repair failed.

The bad news is that I have to go to physical therapy for a month and possibly receive steroid injections to resolve this.  I am really frustrated because I was supposed to start marathon training this month, but obviously I won't be doing that.  My doctor said I could still run until I see the PT (I couldn't get in until week after next) but that I would have to decrease my mileage, avoid hills, and forget about trying to run faster.  After I see my PT, he will make more recommendations for me.

SO anyway, this week I have gone out for short little jogs and walks with the dog.  I started a new core workout at home and after doing it twice, my abs are killing me!! That is a good hurt though, right??

Healthy eating has been so-so.  I've been eating a 1/2 avocado for lunch with EVOO and salt/pepper and ohhh my word it is SO good!!  Plus I feel good about it because its full of healthy things!!  Of course, I don't eat just that- usually I have string cheese and crackers/or toast with it too.  I've been enjoying tons of fruit smoothies in the morning too, my favorite this week is banana, strawberries, blueberries, and OJ- soooo good! I love that eating healthy is so easy in the summertime, all I ever seen to crave is fresh fruit and veggies.  Ok, and Ice cream.  And Froyo- speaking of which, I had a lovely little Froyo date with Kelly this week.  It was SO much fun chatting and enjoying our delicious treats.  I did put fruit on mine, so that means it's good for you, obviously.  And summer shandy...those things are good for mental health though, right?!

How cute is this picture of us at Cherry Berry??

Thursday, May 30, 2013

My Taco?

Ok, so I know this song is played on the radio way too much, but I still love it.  It's catchy and fun and easy to sing in the shower.  I was listening to it yesterday while running, when something popped into my head that I haven't been able to clear!

Tell me it doesn't sound like she's saying "you're gonna miss me by my taco" in this verse:

When I’m gone
When I’m gone
You’re gonna miss me when I’m gone
You’re gonna miss me by my walk
You’re gonna miss me by my talk, oh (TACO)
You’re gonna miss me when I’m gone

And now I want a taco.  

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Tragedy of the Healthy Eater

I don't have much to say today, but I came across a funny and smart article the other day and wanted to share it:

I wish I had written this article SO badly.  It's like she read all of my thoughts and then wrote them down in a much funnier way.

Go read it.  Fer reelz.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Memorial Day Weekend

How is it already the last week of May?  And more importantly, why does it still feel like March in Minnesota?!  Ugh, the weather this weekend was pitiful!  I guess I really lucked out when I got assigned to work Memorial Day weekend this year though, because I really don't feel like I missed a holiday at all with all the rain!

Mark was out of town, so I spent Friday evening golfing with my parents.  We played at their country club and had dinner there afterwards with some family friends.  I hadn't swung a club since breaking my hand last summer, but it definitely went better than expected, especially on such a hard course.

I spent Saturday, Sunday, and Monday at work, which was fine.  I don't mind working on the weekend at this job.  I get to hang out with some pretty inspiring patients there, but at times it can be very emotionally draining.  Sometimes I get home and I just want to lay in bed and watch  TV.  I still managed to get out for a walk with Shay around the lake near our house though.

On Monday night, Mark and I went out for dinner at Red Cow which was delicious!  It was a fun atmosphere and the food was great!!  I wanted to try everything on the menu, so we will definitely have to go back!  It's not too far from our house and they apparently have a great happy hour!

I hope y'all had a great Memorial Day weekend to kick off your summer!!  Let's hope it actually does become summer around here soon!

Friday, May 24, 2013

10 Non-Running Goals

If you read my post from last week, you know that I haven't been doing too much running.  I couldn't get in to see my hip surgeon until next Tuesday, so I am trying to take it a little easier until then.  I am still going out for a few miles here and there, but taking a lot more rest days in between.  Instead of focusing on the last week and my almost non-existent workouts, I am going to share with you some health and fitness goals I have for myself this summer.  Obviously, I have running goals.  Since I won't really know if these are possible until I have my hip checked out, I am just writing my non-running goals.

1. Go for more walks.  Each weekend I have in town, I'd like to take my dog for a walk around one of the 10,000 lakes in Minnesota.  Walking is a great way to get in some exercise without putting a lot of stress on your joints.  Plus, it is a good way to remind yourself that sometimes exercise doesn't have to be about sweating and burning calories, it can just be for some fresh air and stress relief!

2. Play 6+ rounds of golf.  This number will definitely go up if I am not running.  I love golf, but since it is SO time consuming, I think 2x per month is realistic.  I'm getting one of those in tonight!

3. Plan at least 1 long bike trip.  I have been so bad about using my road bike the last couple of summers, so this year we NEED to get out for a trip.  I am thinking maybe a ride on the Cannon Valley Trail.

4. Stick with a resistance training program. This is going to be hard without a gym membership, but I am determined!

5. Go to at least 1 outdoor yoga class per month.  There are several of these offered around the Twin Cities, but a lot of them are SUPER early in the morning.  Again though, it's something that will increase if I am not running.

6.  Grow something edible in my garden.  The only edible things we have right now are chives and mint, but I would really like it if I could grow at least one vegetable in the backyard!

7. Wear my bikini at least one time in public.  This seems like a strange goal, but I haven't felt confident enough about my body to wear a bikini in public since our honeymoon.  I avoid bikini-wearing-events like the plague, but this summer I'd really like to get over that.

8.  Perfect my gazpacho recipe.  I LOVE gazpacho in the summer time, it is SO refreshing and healthy!  Mark doesn't really like it though, so this summer I am determined to come up with a recipe that he can enjoy too!

9. Wear more sunscreen.  I really don't tan well, but I burn extremely well! I always wear sunscreen if I am laying out in the backyard, but I am terrible about putting on sunscreen when I am just out and about.  This summer, that has to change!

10.  Stay positive and injury free.  The most important thing really is protecting your body so that you can continue to be active throughout your life.  I know my hip might be putting a damper on things, but I would much rather be able to enjoy a range of activities later on than focus solely on running in my 20s.

Wow, that seems like a lot of goals for not even including running!  I hope I can follow through with these!  As always, linking up with Jen for Health and Fitness Friday!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Vacation Recap Day 10: Our Last Day in Europe!

I'm kind of sad to be writing my last vacation recap from our European adventure!  If you've stuck with me through all of these, thank you!  It's so fun to be able to share our trip and have these posts as a reminder for myself of everything we did.

We finished up our trip with one final day in Munich.  We go up and wandered back to Marienplatz to watch the Glockenspiel go off.  We grabbed a table and some cappucino and watched the little figurines dance and twirl while music played from the bell tower.  It was really cool and there were TONS of people lined up to watch.

The figurines sort of act out little stories while the music plays.  Here you can see the beginning (left) and end (right) where one of the "knights" is being jousted off his horse.

We headed outside of Marienplatz a few blocks and found this church to look at.

 I know what you're thinking, we looked at A LOT of churches!  They are all so interesting though, how could you possibly not go in?

We spent the next couple hours at the Residenz.  The Munich Residenz is where Bavarian royalty and government figures lived a really long time ago.  Most of it was destroyed when Munich was bombed in WWII, but a lot of it has been restored and now operates as a museum.

The pictures can't do justice, but the two photos above give a glimpse of how intricate the entire place was.  And this place was HUGE, we literally spent a couple of hours walking through room after room decorated like these.
For lunch we headed to the Viktualienmarkt, which is like a huge open farmers market right in the heart of Munich.  There were SO many options, but being our last day in Germany we both had traditional bratwurst.  And it was good.

We did some last minute shopping to use up our Euros and buy some souveneirs, then finished up our trip appropriately at one the worlds most famou beer halls, the HofbrÀuhaus

Yum!  The beer was delicious, and the glasses were as big (or bigger) than my head!  There was a polka band playing and the place was packed! This cute German lady was walking around with a pretzel cart and other goodies.  Yep, it was definitely a good idea to end things there!

We took an evening stroll through some pretty gardens before grabbing one last dinner and heading back to the hotel to pack up.  We left pretty early the next morning and after 2 flights, we were landing in Minneapolis!

Thanks everyone for coming a long on this journey with us!  We had the BEST time I could imagine!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Vacation Recap Day 9: Munich

After we left Salzburg, we drove to Munich, ditched our car, and took the train into the city.  We got there pretty early in the day so we had plenty of time to get acclimated.  We stayed a short walk from Marienplatz which is a big square where the Glockenspiel is.

Entrance to Marienplatz

We found a restaurant to grab some lunch, but we couldn't quite decipher what was on the menu.  We decided to split the "Bavarian Special Plate" and ended up with a smorgasbord of meats, cheeses, and breads.  Some of it was really good- but some of it could only be described as "meat jello."

Frauenkirche in Muenchen.

We went into a couple cool churches, like the Frauenkirche (the inside is pictured above.  It's the church with the rounded double towers below.)

We then climbed 305 steps to get to the top of St. Peter's Church (Alter Peter) and took these cool shots of Munich.

The inside of the church was also so cool!

We caught another Football (soccer) match at a local bar, and decided to hit the hay early that night.  I have a confession to make though.  We went to McDonald's for dinner that night.  I know, I know...we're in Germany and go to...McDonald's?!  The truth is, I have a weird fascination with McDonald's in foreign countries.  I love seeing the difference in something so familiar to us Americans.  Don't judge.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Weekend Shenannies

Another weekend come and gone. Is it just me, or do weekends fly by even faster in the summer? I'm pretty sure they do.

I was supposed to have Friday off, but we ended up getting some last minutes patients admitted and my boss asked if I was willing to come in to do their evals...which I obliged, mostly for the brownie points. It was really no big deal since I love my job though.  It was a pretty rainy Friday afternoon/evening, so Mark and I hunkered down and watched a movie.  We watched What To Expect When You're Expecting, which I really enjoyed.  I thought it was really cute, especially the whole adoption storyline with J Lo.

Saturday morning, we woke up to a glorious thunderstorm.  Don't you love listening to the rain and thunder while you're in bed?  I did have to get up and brave the rain though, because I had a very important date!  I met up with the wonderful Madison from Espresso and Cream to talk about my yoga teacher training, which I am really hoping she decides to do. (Hi Madison!)

Once the rain cleared up, Mark and I drove out the the MN Landscape Arboretum, which happens to be one of my favorite places in the Twin Cities.  We went for a hike along one of the many trails the runs though the 1,100 acres of pristine land filled with interesting trees and gardens.  Of course, I stopped for a little yoga.

After our hike, we bought a bunch of flowers for planting!  We planted marigolds in our 5 window boxes, and still have some left to put into the ground.  We decided to make use of our fire pit Saturday night, it turned out to be a great evening for a bonfire!

(Look Orlando got to come outside with us!)

I had to get up early on Sunday to take an "absolute beginner" yoga class for part of my teacher training.  It was a cool experience and very exciting to see a room full of brand new yogis.  I did a little shopping in the afternoon before taking Shay for a walk.  We were about a mile away when the rain started...we both got drenched but he handled it really well.  We had a birthday dinner for Mark that night with my parents at their country club- delicious as always.  Mark and I ended the weekend catching up on some TV on the couch with Orlando and Shay.  Best way to spend Sunday night!  Hope everyone else had a good weekend too!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Health and Fitness Friday- My hip saga continues

I'm not ever sure where to start on this one.  You might remember this post about my hip surgery last year.  If you don't want to go back and read that, let me remind you-  last year (Feb 2012) I had surgery on my left hip to repair a labral tear.  I was in PT for a several months following the surgery, and finally got back to running in July or August.  I have never felt 100% since then, but my hip hasn't been as big of a problem as it was in the past.

Well, well, well.  What do you know?  My hip is killing me lately.  I am so confused by this.  Last month I was running up to 9 miles with very slight pain, sometimes no pain at all.  I didn't run at all on vacation, and I haven't done anything over 4 miles since I've been home, and the pain is back with a vengeance.  Yesterday I couldn't run more than a few blocks without the pain stopping me.   And I couldn't walk without limping!  That is NOT good!

What is really stressing me out is that I signed up for the Twin Cities Marathon.  I was planning to do a half marathon sometime this summer as a part of my training, but I'm glad I haven't signed up yet as that would only add to my stress right now (these races are expensive and offer no refund!)  I want to run the marathon, I've been planning to run it this year since before my surgery, and I really thought it was going to be ok when I signed up.

I'm making an appointment with my hip surgeon to see what's going on.  Hopefully I can get in next week with him.  I know I don't have to make any decisions yet, its not even training season yet, but of course I am worried about it!  Any encouragement would be appreciated at this point :)

Sorry to be a downer for Jen's Fitness Friday linkup :(

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Vacation Recap Days 7-8: Innsbruck and Salzburg

You guys. Austria was so much more than I had thought it would be.  It totally exceeded all expectations.  It's not that I didn't think it would be great, but Austria was kind of just an add-on to our time in Germany.  We really only decided to go to Salzburg because it's so close to Munich, and Innsbruck happened to be on the way from Garmisch to Salzburg.  I am SO glad we decided to go to both places- so amazing!

Super cute town square in Innsbruck!  Great shopping too, most of these stores were really high end clothing designers.  It felt very Italian, which makes sense since it is only about 30 minutes from Italy.

How cool are those mountains right above the city?

Me infront of St. Anna's Column in Altstadt (Old Town) Innsbruck.

The 1964 Winter Olympics were held in Innsbruck, here is the sports complex!

After exploring Innsbruck, we got on the road for a beautiful and scenic drive to Salzburg.  We had a hard time finding our hotel because we didn't know that it was located in an area that you can't drive in (travel agent fail.)  So after some stressful navigating, parking, and walking several blocks to our hotel, we were in desperate need of a treat.

Enter the best Apfelstrudel of my life.  Washed down with a glass of Prosecco.

We enjoyed this amazing dessert with a view of the Mozart statue honoring Salzburg's most famous resident.

 Our hotel overlooked the charming cobblestone streets in Old Town.

The architecture was so cool.  There were all of these beautiful buildings with really old stone churches nestled in between.

The Salzach River flows right through Salzburg.  We spent time on both sides of the river, both equally charming.  In the picture, you can see a procession marching across the bridge, we weren't sure what it was for, but we ran into this group later and it looked like some sort of police ceremony.

One of the bridges over the river is filled up with locks that people attach to it.  The locks all have 2 people's names written on them in the hopes that they will be "locked" in love together forever.

Since we were so close to Italy, both Mark and I felt like going to an Italian restaurant for dinner.  We found a super cute little place, and the pizza looked so good that we both ended up ordering our own pizzas!  They were amazing, best pizza ever!  We both agree that it was one of our best meals of the vacation!

We had a great time in Salzburg, I highly recommend it to anyone who is planning a trip to Europe!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Someone's turning 29!

In case you haven't noticed, these first couple weeks of May are very exciting around the Hall household.  May 5th is my birthday, May 7th is our anniversary, and TODAY, May 15th is Mark's birthday!  

Mark is turning 29 today!  HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY to the very best guy I know!  I am so lucky to call you my husband, you're so much better than I ever could have imagined.  I want to give a special shout out to my mother-in-law today for giving birth to him and raising such a great guy.

We don't have any BIG plans today, just going out to eat tonight (and buying tile for our upcoming bathroom, right?!)  We will celebrate more this weekend though!  Mark and my dad are going to play golf at Interlachen Country Club on Sunday, and my mom and I will meet them for dinner (hopefully outside on the terrace) after their round.  Let's hope the weather stays nice!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Vacation Recap Day 6: Andechs, Germany!

We had a blast this day!  It might have been my favorite....if I had to pick only one. We started out with a beautiful gondola right up a mountain.  The scenery was unreal!  We could look out over the Alps and see our whole town below us.  There were also some pretty cool hang-gliders out for us to watch!

Mountain Yoga.  Duh.

Ski jump used in the 1936 Winter Olympics held in Garmsich-Partenkirchen

After our mountain expedition, Mark and I drove up to Andechs, which is a little over an hour north of Garmisch.  There is this really cool monastery there, which still functions with monks living on the grounds.  The monks actually brew beer and sell it there!  Real abbey ale from the abbey!  We decided to sample some when we got there, along with the most gigantic pretzel of all time!

The scenery in Andechs was really pretty, especially from the monastery that is set way up on a hill.

We saw A LOT of old churches on this trip, which always fascinate me, but the church at this monastery was my favorite!  It was really incredible, the pictures just don't do it justice at all.  I think it is one of the things I will remember most from our trip.

How pretty is that?  After we got back to Garmisch, we found a super yummy little restaurant (and had amaaaaazing currywurst!) then we finished up the day with a sunset and some time on our balcony.  It really was perfection.

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