It’s currently past midnight during finals week and I’m pondering life as I attempt to write a paper to accompany an English project. I mentioned it earlier, but my project is on the significance of stories. I wanted to share the anecdote I wrote for the project because I feel it really represents who I am and what I do-and maybe this is part of why I blog. It offers a different view into my life and shows a little slice of writing that is quite different from blogging.

I love to tell stories; it is who I am. There is something amazingly satisfying about making someone laugh, turning the mundane into the absurd, turning nothing but free-floating thoughts into a cohesive entity. I love weaving together morsels from here or there, the threads of stories that are either my own or repurposed from another source. I used to fear the loss of stories—I embarked on a project of taking a selfie a day for a year simply so that each day I had a compact memory, a story I could not lose to the abyss of time. Then, I realized that my stories make me up—they stand alone and cannot be lost as long as they are told. So I continue to tell my stories to anyone and everyone who will lend an ear. I tell of my adventure of nearby getting caught on a giant lightning rod (a sailboat) during a colossal thunderstorm, of my dad climbing out the fifth floor of his college dorm on a rope—just to see if he could—and then getting stuck halfway down, of the night I stayed up to watch the sunrise just because I could, but was too afraid of heights to climb up on the roof to see it. I tell of the most interesting case I have seen from my summer job at a vet (a dog under the influence of marijuana), of the latest trouble my puppy has caused, of the exploits that have to be censored for certain audiences. I tell of the dead squirrel that prompted a major shift in my future career, of 6am wake up calls to prank a friend, of staying up late and only sleeping two hours to wake up early to exercise because my sleep-deprived mind was incapable of the thought process necessary to determine I should sleep in. These stories are my own, but by telling them I share them and they can become someone else’s to own, to recycle, to stitch together to create something new. They gain a life of their own, independent of mine—a life that may be longer than my own.


So I Guess I Should Blog…

Ugh, I am so ready for Thanksgiving. We get a whole week off, which is basically the best thing ever. I’m still teaching my Monday spin class that week, and you better believe it’s going to be Thanksgiving themed! I spent my entire run this morning brainstorming and I think I have a solid idea! I’ll be sure to share it next week!

Speaking of sharing…I haven’t blogged much lately. I’ll almost certainly blog more over the holidays, but I honestly feel like not that much has happened, or at least not much Internet worthy. Just typical college stuff.

My high school friend visited, which was super fun! We both wanted to go shopping, so that was enough of a reason! Over the course of 2 days, I basically bought every long sleeved shirt in existence. I <3 long sleeves. The goal of shopping was actually to find lion colored clothes-more on that soon.

We also went to my friend’s Wind Ensemble Concert:


My friend is also crazy enough to want to track down a spotlight with me. There had been a HUGE spotlight in the air all week, and it was driving me crazy not knowing where it was coming from! We took to the streets and tracked it down. Success.

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The course? HP. Typical. Gotta love Silicon Valley. We then proceeded to videochat our other high school friend for 3 hours…much needed!

I was met that weekend with quite the delivery-my roommate went home and brought persimmons! The obsession continues.


The following night consisted of dinner with my parents, an awesome prank, and a friend’s birthday party.

I brought a giant cake.


I feel pretty confident that none of the prankees will ever find my blog, so I’ll go ahead and fess up to it here. We got a walkie talkie (they’re pretty cheap off of Amazon these days) and hid it in our friends’ room. The next morning, after 2 hours of sleep I sat outside in 40 something degree weather blasting various things through it-notably the music from both Jaws and Psycho. Nailed. It. More pranks to come.

Other college things. The reason for lion colored clothing?


We had a big themed dinner/party at my dorm. The theme was “Who Run the World? Girls!” So vaguely Beyonce, vaguely vague. Since I sure as heck cannot pull off Beyonce, I was planning on dressing up as the lion from the music video. It actually didn’t end up working out due to a failed effort at coordinating another costume, so I ended up vaguely Beyonce, meaning I wore the one sparkly thing I own, paired with a pencil skirt and heels. Well, briefly heels. I think it’s actually been a year since I’ve worn heels so they definitely did not last the whole night. I think there’s a full outfit picture of me floating around on someone’s phone, but here’s a selfie.


Also noteworthy-hiking the Dish trail with my mom. It was the perfect day for it!

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And a visit from the (kind of) pups.


I also went to a football game, which was a crazy and frustrating one ending in a close loss. Unfortunately, I only stayed for half the game because I had a retreat for my sorority.

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So that’s college. I realize that is not remotely food/fitness related, so stay tuned for lots of talk of that. Spoiler: I did my final trial for my class project of improving on a fitness endeavor!

Who’s excited for Thanksgiving?

My Puppy is 51 Lbs

How crazy is that? She’s gotten so big! Over 6x the weight she was when we got her!

Let’s compare:

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What the heck?? How did that happen??

This morning I went for my first run longer than 2.5 miles since my half. It was uneventful. I’ve been embracing the shorter runs lately, especially with midterms and other life craziness! Plus I’m in love with my 2.5 mile route. It feels like fall! I broke out my santa run shirt-after Halloween means that’s officially acceptable. My spin classes are going to love me when I start busting out the holiday tunes! For the sake of my own dignity I will wait until after Thanksgiving for that. I’m a firm believer that the time between Halloween and Thanksgiving is the magical period when it is acceptable to start celebrating Christmas but also to still eat all the pumpkin.

The weather here has been gorgeous as well, minus a rainstorm earlier this week. It’s quite brisk in the mornings, but warm enough during the day that long sleeves/cardigans and scarves are tolerable.


I spent my Sunday doing reading from our hammock!

For some reason, I haven’t been feeling sunflower seed butter at breakfasts and have been doing greek yogurt with jam.


I know this looks like a spoonful but the bowls+spoons are huge!

The food situation has been better as well. I think our new chef is adapting to the tastes and needs of my house. More vegetables, less oil, the return of grilled chicken to the salad bar, and sufficient food for leftovers.


One day for lunch, it was all salads, which was awesome. Asian with shrimp, chicken caesar, and butternut squash with parmesan and brussels sprouts.


Dinner of chicken, kale+veggie+tomatoes, and parmesan polenta.


Make your own tacos in salad form-Mexican rice, black beans, chicken, tomato vinaigrette. There has also been homemade salad dressings lately which have been awesome!


A dinner of leftovers because I was gone late at Crossfit-chicken, more polenta, leftover salad, roasted sage sweet potatoes.


Salad+chicken with roasted cruciferous veggies (my fave) and rice pilaf.


I made my own little concoction today as well-cinnamon apples heated up in the microwave on top of oats, sun butter, and a touch of honey. I heated this up in the microwave as well and the oats actually got toasty! The things you learn.

In other life news-check out this photo of my little guy!


And finally-I’ve been loving time hop. Today’s memory from 3 years ago was great. The context is it was my first regatta for crew.


My father, everyone!



I love holidays. I love love love holidays, and I love love love Halloween. I’ve been essentially planning my Halloween party since last year’s, and things came together quite well!

Unfortunately, I woke up yesterday feeling off. I still made it to our Halloween Crossfit workout, but was starting to feel it in the afternoon.

Crossfit was not one to be missed though. I’ve been a baseball player for the last 6 years, so it gave me a chance to break that out again!


Lots of people dressed up, and we had a Paleo potluck afterwards (which I did not stay for). The workout was a good one-it involved actual pumpkins for goblet squats and russian twists, and I respect that.

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(Photo not mine)

I spent the rest of the afternoon trying to take it easy, but also cleaning and preparing for the party.IMG_4616

A few hours before the party, I started the process of making sangria by soaking the fruit.



We had lots of delicious fall-themed food, and my roommate did an amazing job of arranging everything.

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Lots of cheese and crackers, chips and dip+salsa, fruity candy corn, pumpkin bread/muffins, cookies, truffle popcorn (delicious by the way), and of course candy!

I had a rocking playlist thanks to the fact that I teach spin and know every song ever. Decorations were rather extensive-I actually used a cool idea I found on the internet and it worked fantastically!

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You put a glowstick inside a balloon, and then draw a face on it! The balloons also offered a bit of extra light so we didn’t need every single light on.

The best part of the party? Dry ice. It’s not a Halloween party without a dry ice punch bowl. Plus, it keeps the punch cool and fizzy!


For the sangria, I mixed up the vodka soaked fruit with some chardonnay and sparkling apple cider.


I was trying to figure out how to get it cold without watering it down with ice…and then I remembered-duh-I have 2 huge bricks of dry ice, so I dropped a piece in.


Also-I totally used my space blanket from the Nike Half as a tablecloth. #college

As for my costume-this year I was a cat! Haven’t been anything but a baseball player in forever, so that was exciting. I feel like a cat would be a cliche costume for anyone except me!

Also-here’s a little throwback to the last time I wore these ears:


And some pictures from last night!

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It was such a fun night!

It’s crazy though to think I won’t be with these people this time next year!

By some miracle, I actually woke up feeling so much better. I’m hoping this was just a little 24 hour thing!

Did you dress up for Halloween? What were you?


The Royal We

Hello! I hope everyone is having a fantastic Halloween week! I have finally gotten over the hump of midterms, and I think (knock on wood) they went well! That being said, I definitely spent some time relaxing with Netflix today (much needed) and am currently tackling the pile of laundry that has built up in the past week or so.

Let’s go through the past several days, shall we?

Monday morning began with a track workout. I did a warm up followed by 4x400m, including a timed trial of my 400m run. The good news is in the past few weeks with my training program, I’m 6 seconds faster! Running for a grade is definitely a good extra motivator.


Monday was quite the grind. I had a midterm in Exercise Physiology on Tuesday, plus I was leading section for my English class so I had to prep for that. I think I spent 9 hours studying for my midterm alone. My only break was to meet up to work on my English, and to teach an over capacity (!) spin class. The energy from a full class was exactly what I needed to refresh my mind!



Stuffed pepper, chicken, veggies.


Gluten free vegetable past and broccoli with sesame dressing (because there was no lettuce left). Plus a little rice pudding which apparently had almonds (but wasn’t labeled). And now I’m having a bit of an allergic reaction. Meh.


My new favorite snack: pumpkin pie filling (from a can) plus egg whites, cooked in the microwave. I got the Whole Foods brand which was pretty low sugar.

I have not gotten anywhere near sufficient sleep lately. I don’t think I’ve gotten more than 6 hours in maybe a week? That plus 9 hours of studying (plus other HW and class) had my brain so fried that by the time I was going to bed on Monday, I started talking to myself, which alone would be weird enough, but by referring to myself as the royal we. Oh sleep deprivation.


From my textbook-isn’t this adorable?

Tuesday morning I went for a short run to energize my mind and enjoy the fall colors.


Post run, I ate breakfast and stared longingly at the pumpkins that I would get the chance to carve with my dorm post-midterm.


I think the test went pretty well, and I got the chance to rest my eyes briefly before leading section, which definitely went well! At this point I was feeling my second wind.

Tuesday evening I went to Crossfit-we worked on bench press, and a long WOD:

10 minute AMRAP:

9 toes to bar (v ups for me because of my shoulder)

12 push press

15 squats

3 min rest

Helen, cutoff of 10 minutes:

3 rds of 400m run, 21 kb swings, 12 pull ups (I did TRX rows)

I was maybe a little too ambitious with my shoulder. It was feeling really strong prior to the workout, but the push presses were just too much volume. I started at 55# and had to drop the weight to just the bar in the middle. My shoulder was pretty sore afterwards, so I gave it a full rest today. At the same time, I think a lot of the soreness was just stretching and getting that flexibility back, because it’s feeling good now. I think it’s going to take some pushing while still being careful.

I stopped at Whole Foods for dinner and a couple of groceries. Dinner was veggie soup, roasted sage butternut squash, and brown rice.


On Tuesday night, I attended a school event that is a bit of a tradition here, but that combined with good conversations with cool people resulted in far too late of a bedtime.

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That being said, tiredness-wise I’ve actually been doing really well, although a day off was necessary.

I was planning on running today, but I’m glad I waited because tonight I found my new shoes in the mail! They will be broken out tomorrow!


Also-I’m planning a day in the life for tomorrow so stay tuned!