Face It Friday: A Large Gain, A Reality Check & Motivation

Face It Friday: A Large Gain, A Reality Check & Motivation

I thought about hiding away from the scale. I feel like a broken record, but I have been struggling recently to find my mojo. I would really like to know where it is hiding. Have you seen it?

Clearly I have the activity part in check...

... but the food portion has been tough. Why? Because I have been a lazy emotional wreck when making choices. There is no one to blame but myself. I am the one bringing chips in the house under the guise that I can "have on serving." Well one serving is turning into 3 servings. But I say to myself "you are weighing and measuring it so that's okay." Ummmm no self. Just no.

So it is time to kick my own booty back into gear. Today is a fresh start.

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#GIVEAWAY: Free Entry To South Shore Half Marathon (11/2)

Annddddd the winner IS:

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Picking the perfect Half Marathon race can be tricky! There are a ton of factors: date, course, course limit, # of water stops, number of participants, race swag and of course BLING!

Well folks the inauguralSouth Shore Half Marathon on November 2 in Norwell, MA is hitting the nose on the head in all aspects. About 45 minutes outside of Boston.

south shore
south shore

Let's break it down.

The South Shore Half is a scenic back-roads course, which is closed to traffic (BIG WIN THERE!) This course is sure to offer something for runners of all experience levels. The half marathon will start in the driveway of the Norwell High School, and finish at the Norwell Post Office.

How can you go wrong running through a beautiful New England town with the leaves changing all around?

The 13.1 mile course has 11 water stops and a medical tent, which serves both Mile 5 and 9 of the course. 

The course limit for the race will be 3 hours and 30 minutes. I like hearing that the course will be closed for that entire time. I hate when I hear races open up the streets after 3 hours or less. Everyone should be safe.

Getting to and from the parking lot? They got it covered.

Shuttle buses will be provided from parking at Hanover Mall to the start line at Norwell High School and from the finish line in Norwell center to the Hanover Mall. The shuttle buses will start running at 5:30 AM from the Hanover Mall and will continue running from the finish line until 3:00 PM.

Not only do I love being part of inaugural races, but I love races that offer sweet swag!!

  • Long sleeve tech t-shirt
  • Half Marathon Finisher Medals 
  • Event running hat (register before 8/15/14 at midnight)
  • Commemorative pint glasses (register before 10/10/2014 at midnight)

Ohhh yyeaahh! That sounds right up my alley.

(Sorry I am posting this late so those who register from here on out are out of luck on the hat)

In the FAQ portion of the website, they list:

Are walkers permitted?
Feel free to run, walk, or crawl just make sure you can complete the half marathon course in under our course time limit (3 hours 30 minutes).

I like the inclusion of crawling! There are definitely some races where I feel like that may be the only way I get myself across the line.

The race does allow strollers, but asks those using strollers to start in the back of the pack for safety reasons.

Oh oh and how did I forget the post-race party. Each participant will get a free beer (brewery not listed yet) at Tinkers Son Pub at the Finish Line. Mmmm beer! :)

All of this is adding up to one sweet race and I cannot wait for it... and for YOU to join me!

That's right it is giveaway time!!

So here’s how to enter.

The giveaway will run from Sunday August 24 (2pm ET) through Friday August 29 (2pm ET)!

The winner will be selected and announced on Friday!

Taking On The Heartbreak Hill Hat Trick With Runner's World

Runner's World is bringing their running weekend challenge to Boston in 2014!!! You read that right folks and I am thrilled.

04081-Heartbreak Hill Half Marathon Logo

Sooo here's the lowdown: I've been scoping this out since I heard rumblings of it at the Runner's World shakeout run two days before the Boston Marathon in 2013.

I've been asking any Runner's World employees that have crossed my path since April 2013, including dear Caitlin (Web Producer at RW) after we both completed the Dopey Challenge in Disney. :P

photo (30)

No one is safe friends when I am on a mission to learn about a new race... especially being hosted in my hood.

Back to the details.

The Runner's World Heartbreak Hill Half & Festival invades Boston June 6-8, 2014.

Aannnddd I was chosen to participate in the weekend as a blogger by Runner's World. <<insert shocked face>> Aahhhh!!


That's me hugging the Runner's World PR folks as a Thank You

The Running Festival, which is hosted on the campus of Boston College, includes:

  • Seminars
  • Live music
  • A keynote address by Sarah Reinertsen
  • Pre-race dinner with Runner's World editors

Now for the races, which has something for everyone:

Run with us, the editors of Runner's World, from Boston College through beautiful Newton, Massachusetts and along the Newton Hills, some of the most storied roads in racing. We have a race for runners of all levels, including a free kids run. Half marathon runners will receive a technical running shirt and 5K/10K runners will receive an event T-shirt. All half marathon, 5K, and 10K runners will receive a finisher's medal.

Saturday, June 7 5k - 7am 10k - 8:30am

Sunday, June 8 Half Marathon - 7:30am

So who is up for a challenge or two? Runner's World has your back. You can take your pick from:

**The Five & Dime, where you take on the back-to-back 5k and 10k on Saturday


**The Hat Trick, where you tackle the 5k, the 10k and come back on Sunday for a little Half Marathon

Can you all guess which one I am taking on? Yeah you all know me and my love of bling ... so Hat Trick it is.

Oh did I forget to mention the bling? Yes, each race includes a sweet little Finisher's medal. Calling all bling lovers!!


If you are taking part in the Runner's World Heartbreak weekend with friends, check out the Team Challenge.

What's the Team Challenge?

The Team Challenge is designed to help build teamwork, instill camaraderie, encourage networking opportunities, and promote health and fitness. We're giving out awards both for the teams with the most participants in the Half Marathon and for the fastest teams in the Half Marathon.

Pretty cool option if you are planning to run with friends or your running club.


Now for the good part... I am happy to offer you all - my amazing readers and social media friends - some discounts for the weekend.

There are three different codes available - all good for 10% off your registration for:

*Half Marathon - blogweightoffmyshouldersHalf

*Five & Dime - blogweightoffmyshoulders5&10

*Hat Trick - blogweightoffmyshouldersHat

So now I need to know - will I see you out on Heartbreak Hill June 7-8? If so, which distance(s) are you tackling?

Three Things Thursday

Three new products I've tried out recently and am digging: 1) Arctic Ease (Value $15.95 per wrap)

What is it?


I first heard about these wraps from Colleen at TheFitBee.com in April 2012 at her virtual run.


I LOVED being able to ice my knee without being tied down to a bed or couch. I wrapped it up and continued about my day as normal. It was awesome! PLUS, it is reusable (4-8 times per wrap). Say wha? I know!! :)

You just return the wrap to the pouch or plastic container, add 2 tbsps of water, reseal keep at room temperature and it will be good to use multiple times! It makes the $15.95 per wrap price tag a little easier to swallow when you know you can reuse it.

A couple of months back I reached out to Arctic Ease to see if I could score a sample so I could try them again and tell you all about them.


They were nice enough to send me 2 wraps - blue and red. At first I thought they were different types of wraps, but I think one was old packaging and one was new because everything else on the bottles read exactly the same.


The nice things about these wraps is that they can be used on ankles, knees, elbows, shoulders, wrists, feet and lower backs. Additionally, their website gives you step by step instructions on how to apply the wrap depending on the area of the body and the pain.

As the package states:

ARCTIC EASE administers therapeutic cold compression while conforming to the affected site. It'll stay in one place, even if you don't. It's suitable for sprains, arthritis, minor burns, bruises and muscle craps.

And besides being functional, it comes in six colors so you can coordinate with your outfit. ;)

(Note: I am wearing the red one on my right knee as I type this!)


2) Shower Pill (Value - $10 for a 10 pack)

What is it?

ShowerPill™ is the hygiene supplement designed to keep you fresh and clean while on-the-go. This large premium antibacterial body wipe is individually packaged to be discrete, yet versatile and big on performance.

So I had no idea what a hygiene supplement is so thankfully they explained it further on their website:

Just touched that doorknob? You should run to the sink, but grab hand sanitizer instead. Finished that tuna sandwich and forgot your toothbrush? Better pop a breath mint. Worked up a sweat during your midday workout? The ShowerPill™ Athletic Body Wipe™ will keep you fresh so that you can stay at your best all day long.

I was scrolling through Twitter the other night and all of a sudden the twitter handle - @ShowerPill - and was instantly intrigued. Many of you know I usually work out in between Weight Watchers meetings and I am always rushing to squeeze a rinse off before interacting with people. :P So I thought I had to give this a shot.


Shower Pill sent me a couple wipes to try and we IMMEDIATELY put them to good use. Why? Well, my wife couldn't shower for at least 48 hours after knee surgery last week and it was about 100 degrees out so we needed to help her sweaty self out. We used a Shower Pill wipe and it worked like a charm. Since she gave it a positive review, it was my turn.

On Tuesday, I had to fit in a run between meetings and was running late (shocker!) so it was Shower Pill to the rescue. I was pleasantly surprised. I didn't smell at all like I had just been covered in sweat a mere five minutes earlier.

Would I use them after every single workout, probably not. But, I will be keeping them on hand in my house and gym bag for emergencies. I'd rather use one of these than show up smelly. You never want to be the smelly kid. :P

Also, read how Shower Pill was invented - I found it entertaining! :)


3) ROAD ID App (Value - free)

To all my readers here that exercise outside (walking, jogging, prancercising, cycling, etc): I highly recommend you download the FREE Road ID iPhone app! It is still in BETA, but I downloaded it last weekend (find it here).

We all know I never leave home without my ROAD ID bracelet, which has contact information on it as well. BUT, the app will contact people FOR you.


Stock Photo From ROAD ID

You input up to 5 phone numbers into the app and the app will contact those people when you head out on a workout AND if you stop in one place for too long.

So on Saturday when I headed out for a run, I had to try it out. So the main screen allows you to note how long you will be going out for, which type of activity you are doing, etc.


Stock Photo From ROAD ID

I inputted just my wife's information and as I hit "start" on the app she received the following text:



So on Sunday, we wanted to text the "alert" feature so I went out for a run and told my wife that at the end I would keep my phone in one place for 5 minutes while I stretched - just so she didn't get worried something really happened. (Especially since she is laid up with a bum knee :P)

And here is what happened:


Once I was in one spot for 4 minutes, this timer started going off saying I had 1 minute left. It was LOUD. I could hear the alarm going off even with my headphones on, but I had to let it countdown. Once the timer hit zero, my wife received the text on the right.

I think this can be one amazing app and something I will definitely use in the future. Someone online mentioned theirs stopped running when they took a picture, but I took 3 pictures during the run and ROAD ID kept counting away. :)

Unfortunately it is just available for the iPhone, but I'm sure it will expand once it is out of BETA.


Have a Happy Thursday!! :)

Dani Dishes 7-16-13

On this episode of Dani Dishes, I celebrate a week of "Progress Not Perfection" when it comes to my getting #Back2Basics challenge and I'm happy about it! :) I also mention one of my favorite local brews - Slumbrew - check 'em out. Product Of The Week Fiber One 90 Calorie Cinnamon Coffee Cake - http://www.fiberone.com/products/brownies/new-90-calorie-cinnamon-coffee-cake

Weekly Workout Wind Up (6/20-26/13)

After a week of double-triple workout days, I took Saturday and Sunday as rest days - mainly because we were traveling to upstate NY for a wedding so that meant a looooot of time in the car. I did dance at the wedding to help a little. ;) But, I made up for it on Monday!!  

Thursday, June 20: Day 29 of Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred, 5k Run and Afternoon Walk With A Friend

June 20-a

June 20

June 20-2

Friday, June 21: 5k Run and Day 30 of Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred

June 21

June 21-2

Saturday, June 22: REST DAY/Wedding Dancing

Sunday, June 23: REST DAY

Monday, June 24: Personal Sprint Tri (1/2 Mile Swim, 9 Mile Bike, 4 Mile Run) and 45-Minute Spinning

June 24

June 24-2

Tuesday, June 25: 45-Minute Stairmaster

June 25

Wednesday, June 26: 3.7-Mile Run

June 26


Next week will include a four-day trip to Portland for Fitbloggin ... so workouts should be varied!! :)


My Makeshift Monday Morning Triathlon...

On Sunday while driving home from Suzi Storm's wedding in upstate New York, I was tracking my friend Tara from A Life Changing Journey OWN her first Half Ironman. At the same time, Krysten from The Misadventures of a Darwinian Fail was ROCKING her first Triathlon. How could I not be pumped and inspired by all of that awesomness?

So what did I decide to do yesterday morning?

Attempt my own personal Sprint Triathlon at the gym.

On March 3, I somehow landed on the Boston Triathlon (Sprint Tri) website and registered for it (happens August 4). Don't remember, check this out to refresh your memory!

Training has been slow. I finally bought a bike on May 5, but getting the running-biking-swimming training schedule down has been tough. I am trying to train for the Sprint Tri (1/2 mile swim, 9 mile bike and 4 mile run) while also keeping up with training for a slew of half marathons, marathon and Dopey Challenge - which are all on the horizon.

But with all the awesomness that happened on Sunday, I woke up yesterday morning and committed to attempt to do this whole Sprint Tri at my Boston Sports Club location.

I didn't really want to tell anyone what I was going to attempt in case I failed. I confided in Dacia from Run. Ride. Repeat. since she is a non-judgmental cheerleader! :)

I made sure to get #PoweredByBits before embarking on this endeavour thanks to ENERGYbits!!

2013-06-24 10.17.18

I got to the gym about 10am dressed for the swim with a backpack of clothes for the bike/run.

Thankfully between google and my math degree I was able to figure out that I would need to swim 32 lengths of the pool or 16 laps in order to reach the 1/2 mile swim the Boston Triathlon has.

I popped my X-1 Audio waterproof headphones on the back of my goggles, started my timer and I was off. I was going for nice and even strokes and hoping not to go out too fast.

Boy did the music help keep me focused on the swim and on the correct lap number. :P

I finished the 32 lengths in 15:04.

2013-06-24 12.05.49-2

Can you tell I was excited?

2013-06-24 10.43.35

My arms felt GREAT! And I owe a huge thanks to my wife since the bathing suit, swim cap and goggles were all borrowed from her. :P

I quickly headed into the locker room to change for the bike.

It has been AGES since I used a regular gym bike...

2013-06-24 11.25.27

... since I normally get my bike on either outside with Roxie or in Spin class!

It was an awkward bike experience, but I was determined to finish the 9 miles on the bike no matter what.

2013-06-24 11.24.42

I definitely know the bike section will be better 1) in the moment, 2) with more practice and 3) on a more comfortable bike!

2013-06-24 11.25.10

My legs were feeling a little tired - I think from the awkward motion from the oversized bike ;) but I was ready to hit up the treadmill for the 4 mile run.

As I was running, I decided to keep myself at a nice 8:30 pace. I obviously was not doing this little experiment for time, but to prove to myself that I could.

But, as the run got to the 5k mark, my legs were feeling good so I started upping the pace a little each tenth of a mile. Because why not, right?

2013-06-24 12.02.24

I ended up with a 8:31 min/mile pace and I was A-ok with that!!

2013-06-24 12.03.04

I DID IT!! I successfully completed a swim-bike-run in that order and with minimal time in between each one.

I know the actual Sprint Tri will be a whole different experience, but boy did completing each distance within a 2-hour timeframe make me feel a tad more prepared!

I ended up finishing my challenge in 1:21:33.

At least now I have a jumping off point for the rest of my training. I have about 5 weeks before actual race day.

Now I need to work on getting outside and swimming in the open waters, bike on the street and put the sneakers on the pavement.

But for now, I will bask in my own awesomeness and inspire myself to get out and do more!

Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred Review

I share my adventures with Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred! It took me 40 days to complete May 11-June 21 due to injuries, etc but I completed each of the 3 levels 10 times just like she wants. I tweaked the program to fit my injuries and I feel AWESOME!! [embedplusvideo height="281" width="450" standard="http://www.youtube.com/v/EW0to1P5vs0?fs=1" vars="ytid=EW0to1P5vs0&width=450&height=281&start=&stop=&rs=w&hd=0&autoplay=0&react=1&chapters=&notes=" id="ep5633" /]

Weekly Workout Wind Up (6/13-19/13)

Weellll I wanted to return to swimming this week, but apparently the pool had a different idea and it was closed everytime I headed to the gym. But, I am going to get over my fear of swimming outside and embark on that endeavour next week! Eek! I hurt my ankle at the Ruckus Boston race on Saturday so I took it easy on Sunday and Monday and made sure to have an ankle brace on. But, starting Tuesday I was brace free and feeling okay!

Thursday, June 13: Day 25 of Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred

June 13

Friday, June 14: REST DAY


Saturday, June 15: Ruckus Boston (4-Mile Obstacle Run)

2013-06-15 09.57.34

2013-06-15 10.30.20

Sunday, June 16: Walk/Stairmaster/Elliptical with Lindsey

June 16

Monday, June 17: Day 26 of Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred, 3.2 Mile Run, Bike To/From Work, 5k Run and 50-Minute Spin

June 17a

June 17

june 17-2a

june 17-2

june 17-3

Tuesday, June 18: Day 27 of Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred, 2.5-Mile Run and 45-Min Stairmaster

june 18

june 18-2

june 18-3

Wednesday, June 19: Day 28 of Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred, 4.1-Mile Run and 10-Mile Bike Ride w/ my dad

june 19

june 19-2

june 19-3

Feelin' STRONG this week!! :)