Friday, March 30, 2012

The Color Run

Have any of you heard of or done The Color Run? I am thinking of doing the San Francisco one this coming July. It looks like an awesome run to enjoy with your friends and family. Basically, the run is a 5k race that involves starting the race with a blank white t-shirt and getting sprayed with color throughout the run. You are the canvas and the race is your paintbrush. It is an awesome take on a traditional 5k race and is an awesome way to share a race with your friends.

I have done a few other 5k races and they are all very traditional. You arrive early, run the race and enjoy the expo after. The exciting thing about this race is that it is so different and the pictures you get are amazing! This is a fairly new race series as far as I can tell and it is sweeping the country. With 30 races across the country, this race is spreading like wild fire.

I'm always up for something new and this race looks like just the thing to put on my bucket list of must do races. I can hardly wait for registration to open on April 2 and to get signed up! 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Nike Women's Marathon 2012

This is the best race I have ever done and it is in one of the best cities on earth. What is it you may ask? None other than the Nike Women's Marathon in San Francisco, CA! Registration is coming up on April 9th so get ready to put your name in the lottery for entry into this race. 
I had the privilege of running this race last year and I was able to do the whole marathon in 4 hours and 40 minutes. It was nothing short of amazing to experience a race with 20,000 other women all focused on a common goal. The spirit of camaraderie and the passion for running was amazing! I have never felt so surrounded by like minded individuals than I did at this event. Nike sure knows how to put on an amazing event. 

I hope to see you all at the race and around San Francisco. The views from the race are stunning and the fans cheering along the way pushed me onward when I felt like my legs would give out. This race is very organized and truly provides a one of a kind experience. The Tiffany's necklace and awesome Nike gear don't hurt either! 

Ladies, you do not want to miss this race! If you have participated in the event before or have any questions shoot me a comment or message me on Facebook and I'd love to chat with you about it. See you in San Francisco and happy training! 

Monday, March 26, 2012

Discover the Joy of Coconut

I have found a small taste of heaven. Wrapped in smooth coconut cream, packed with delicious coconut flakes and frozen to perfection, this is one frozen treat that doesn't leave me feeling guilty. Coconuts are full of health benefits, one of which is lauric acid, which aids in building the body's immune system. Coconut milk also plays a part in lowering the risk of heart disease, among other benefits. I use it for a substitute for milk in recipes and in my morning oatmeal. It has a smooth, creamy texture that is sure to please even the most picky of taste buds.

This is a dairy free dessert that doesn't leave me feeling heavy after eating it. My favorite combination is a scoop of the frozen coconut dessert with a fresh, sliced mango. This combination creates a taste of the tropics that will transport you to another world with each bite. Feel free to substitute pineapple for the mango or blend fruit and coconut "ice cream" together for a pina colada-like treat! The options are endless for creating new and exciting flavors and dishes. Try substituting it for the cool whip or whipped topping on pancakes, yum!

If you are looking for a delicious treat that is more health and diet friendly than ice cream then look no further than So Delicious Coconut Milk Coconut frozen dessert. If you aren't a coconut fan or are just looking to mix up your flavor choices it comes in multiple other flavors ranging from mint chocolate chip, cookies and cream, vanilla, chocolate and peanut better, etc. 

Other delicious coconut items So Delicious makes range from ice cream bars, yogurt, milk and creamers. Other products are made with soy or almond milk. If you are looking for great non dairy substitutes these are great options. I hope you find them as delicious as I do! 

Paired with a healthy diet consisting of vegetables, fruit and whole grains, this is a great treat food that you can enjoy without feeling guilty. 


Sunday, March 25, 2012

Oakley Perform Beautifully Contest

I just entered the Oakley "Perform Beautifully" Ambassador contest. This is a great opportunity for any woman who is passionate about fitness and health to get the opportunity to work with Oakley. All you have to do is go to their Facebook page and click on the "perform beautifully" contest tab. I just entered the contest this morning and am hoping for the chance to join their team. I encourage anyone who is interested to enter as this is a fantastic opportunity to expand your contacts, increase your fitness skills and interact face to face with a company and other women that share your same passions and values.

Previous ambassadors participated in many Oakley events, enjoyed Oakley products and participated in a fitness weekend sponsored by Oakley in Napa Valley, CA. I personally love blogging about my fitness journey and sharing my goals and successes on my blog. Becoming an Oakley ambassador would open more doors to the fitness world and be a dream come true for me. I love empowering other women and Oakley seems to be as passionate and driven as me in accomplishing that goal.

If you are a passionate, athletic woman who believes in your ability to "perform beautifully" and empower and inspire others to do the same then check out this contest, you won't regret entering. This truly in the chance of a lifetime and a chance to inspire others in ways you may have never been able to in your current position. Enjoy and good luck!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

My Saturday Fun

This Saturday morning I was able to enjoy a delicious smoothie packed with health benefits. I came up with a delicious recipe that I will share with you. Not only is it healthy, but it also tastes great!

Power Smoothie

1 Banana
7 large frozen strawberries
1/4 cup frozen mangos
1/4 cup frozen blueberries
1/4 cup peaches
2 tablespoons flax seeds
2 tablespoons chia seeds
Handful of fresh spinach
1 cup orange juice
3/4 cup almond or soy milk

Blend together and enjoy! Serves about 4.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Chia Seed Granola Recipe

I've been obsessed with chia seeds lately so I thought I would share a delicious recipe involving these incredibly healthy seeds. Packed with Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids as well as protein and fiber, these little seeds are nutrition powerhouses. I have made it a habit to always add a tablespoon or two of chia seeds and flax seeds to my oatmeal and smoothies. Now I am attempting to add them to other recipes. The following granola recipe is delicious and packed with health benefits from the oats, chi seeds and cinnamon. Let me know what you think and enjoy!
Chia Seed Granola Recipe

  • 2 c. old fashioned oats
  • 4 tbsp. chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp. shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 4 tbsp. honey
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil


  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees and spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray.
  • Combine dry ingredients in a small bowl and stir.
  • Slowing stir honey and olive oil into oat mixture until oats are well coated.
  • Spread granola onto prepared cookie sheet and bake for approximately 15 minutes, stirring halfway through.
  • Let cool until oats become crunchy and enjoy!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Friends Make all the Difference

I've had some friends recently that don't support all my endeavors, whether they be fitness related or other. So I've been reconsidering the circles I hang out in. I have come to the conclusion that you can't please everyone and you don't have to.

It is so important to pick friends that build you up and make your life better. Don't waste your time on people that bring you down. It just isn't worth the struggle, and if you are not happy there is no point in continuing the relationship.

When you are trying to improve your life or make your life better picking the right people to surround you is crucial to your success. A lot of times I hear people saying how unhappy they are or how much they wish others would care about them and their success. The reality is that you can't make someone support you. In a case like this you need to go out and find friends that share your goals, and will be excited to celebrate your successes with you.

The only way that you can truly succeed and reach all your dreams is to surround yourself with friends that care about you, believe in you and support you no matter what.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Indian Wells 2012

That is one giant racket.
Wow, I can't believe it has been a week since my last post. Trust me, it was for a good reason. What might that be? My husband and I took a trip to Indian Wells, California to watch the BNP Paribas Open, the second largest professional tennis tournament next to the Grand Slams! I love tennis and had been looking forward to this mini vacation for months.
Oversize ball and racket, awesome!
 I enjoy tennis because of the beauty and the fierceness of the sport. There are always great players, amazing shots, upsets and triumphs and this tournament was no exception. Every point I watched was nothing short of exceptional. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal were as graceful and fierce as ever and it made for some excellent tennis. Federer took home the trophy, as did Azarenka on the women's side and they both played astonishing tennis all week to get themselves to that point. They overcame rain delays, heavy winds and ups and downs to come out victorious, but in the end, it was worth it. Here are just a few shots to let you see how much fun I had. Check out those giant rackets!

 I can't imagine a better way to spend the weekend. I hope to keep coming back for years to come.

A Sunset in Indian Wells
Federer with his Trophy!

Streamers to celebrate victory!
I left the tournament with a fire and drive to practice my tennis shots more and to keep working on my strength and cardio in the gym so I can look as fit and fierce on the court as these professional players did. 

Two happy tennis fans.

Nadal and Lopez winning the doubles trophy.
A fierce Nadal forehand. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Nike Better World

Making the world a better place should be something that we all strive for. Can we really afford not to? Sport makes the world better and Nike does a great job of showing us why in this video from the Nike Better World campaign.

Sport brings passion, creates confidence, belief, brings together nations and creates a way for people of all walks of life to interact together. No one has ever regretted participating in an athletic event. Often it is incredibly difficult to get out the door and into training mode, but once you are there you never regret the benefits you receive.

What are you doing to make the world around you better? 

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Running Essentials

As promised yesterday here is a list of my running essentials. I love these products and they can definitely turn a mediocre run into a memorable and fun experience. I hope you find this information useful and find a few new products to enhance your running. 

 1. Nike GPS Sport Watch: Great for tracking your running stats, counting laps, and keeping you on pace. Plus you can upload all your running data directly to, view your routes and challenge friends.
2. Nike Lunar Eclipse Running Shoe: Super smooth ride and just the right amount of cushioning for your foot. Nike's latest and greatest technology in running shoes. 

3. Nike Cyclone Vapor Jacket: This is on the top of my wish list. This jacket is super light and perfect for keeping wind and rain off while not causing you any discomfort. Tiny felt circles on the inside keep the fabric sliding off your body. You will hardly know it is there.

4. Nike Legend Short: This short is made of recycled plastic water bottles and is the perfect mix of function and style. It has great lift in the butt and is flattering for all body types. 

5. Nike Relay Tank: This tank is lightweight and a great color to give your running a bit of a pop. It is perfect for the road, trail or gym. 

6. Camelback Quick Grip Handheld Bottle: Long runs require hydration and this bottle is a perfect handheld size. It holds enough water to keep you fueled for your run without creating too much of a hassle while carrying it. The handy strap wraps around your hand and keeps the bottle in place.

I hope you find these products useful in your running routine. Also, check out my new Facebook page Reason To Play.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Running Race Season!

Once again the season of running races is upon us. 5k, 10k, and marathons, races always seem to pop up more during the spring and summer months. Maybe they attract more racers because people are excited to be able to finally run without wearing layers upon layers of clothing. After all, with the coming of spring there are also longer daylight hours and more time to train in the evening. Whatever the reason, training for a race is a great way to stay in shape and mix up your exercise routine.

I just met a girl at my gym who is as much into running and racing as me. We ran together for the first time this last week and have already planned a 5k race to do together the first week of June. The exciting thing about a training partner is that I find myself pushing myself harder when I am running with someone than when I am running alone. In fact, we were able to run almost a minute faster per mile while running together. I can't wait for all our future training sessions. I know they will help me to become a better runner.

Part of great race training is also having a way to track your mileage and pace. I have the Nike+ GPS Sport Watch and my new training partner has a Garmin GPS watch. Both are great and I recommend investing in one of your choosing. They are well worth it. Knowing your average pace, time, split speed, tracking your routes...there are so many things you can do with technology to enhance and improve your running experience.

Getting a pair of running shoes with proper support and cushioning is also an important step to take before beginning training. Have your local running store analyze your stride and then get a pair of shoes that work for you. After that all you need is a pair of comfortable shorts and a sweat wicking shirt to keep you comfortable and dry during your run.

Check out tomorrow's post for my list of running essentials! Happy racing!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Keep Fighting

 Nobody expects you to win. No one but you can truly feel the joy of success and the pain of failure. In everything you do, do it with one hundred percent passion. Those long hours you put in at the gym are only known by you. No one can put in training for you or push you to work harder than before. But pushing yourself is what makes you better, it makes you stronger.

I pushed myself today and this week with my workouts and blog posts. I ran 12 miles this week, played tennis and trained with my Nike Training Club app everyday. I posted about my journey and about training that I do to push myself to be better than I was yesterday. I pushed myself to stretch for 15 minutes after each session and I am already feeling more flexible. I am getting better.

I challenge you to keep fighting every day. Keep pushing to become stronger, faster and more talented than you were before. Putting in the time and the energy to make yourself stronger will be worth it and will pay off. There is nothing better than showing up at a race or event knowing that you have put in the work and left nothing to chance. Knowing that you are prepared for anything life throws at you and are disciplined enough to seize those great moments in life will be worth the sweat and tears it took to get you there.

Happy training everyone! Get out there and enjoy the day. 

Thursday, March 8, 2012


Unstoppable is a powerful word. It can be defined by refusing to give up, never quitting, repeatedly working everyday towards a goal. Being unstoppable means empowering others to join you and work with you towards your goal. It's taking something in your life and making it your focus.

Elite athletes are unstoppable. Successful people are unstoppable. They have mastered the art of being loyal to their dreams and their desires. Being unstoppable means that you must make tough decisions every day. You must decide how your decisions will define your future and build a better life for you.

I want to become unstoppable in my quest to become a personal trainer and to share my love of fitness with others. I want to be unstoppable with the minutes, hours, and days that I put in working out with my Nike Training Club app. I want to succeed in all aspects of my fitness journey.

I have big dreams and big goals. It's no secret that Nike is a huge inspiration for me. I want to embody what I feel Nike has brought to the fitness world. I want to be everything that I can be, to run faster, reach higher, and push further than I every thought possible.

I'm making myself Unstoppable. What are you doing to reach your dreams? 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Nike Women

Here are the top reasons I love Nike Women.

10. Nike Women represents athletes of all types. From professional, to amateur, to gym class heroes, they never leave anyone out or say they aren't good enough.

9. Nike Women interacts with customers and fans via Twitter, Facebook, and their own blog at

8. Nike women creates products that are sustainable (their Legend pant is made out of recycled plastic water bottles), comfortable, functional, and fashionable.

7. Nike Women travels the world to get pictures of athletes in different cites sporting their Nike style. Check out Nike Found on tumblr!

6. They create a lifestyle that is based on exercise and positivity and encourage women to always do their best and try new things.

5. Nike Women created and endorses the Nike Training Club app for iPhone, iPod, and iPad, which revolutionized my training and allows women everywhere to have a personal trainer with them wherever they are.

4. Master trainer Marie Purvis who is the Nike trainer behind the Nike Training Club app, and to who I owe my toned arms and soon-to-be six pack abs!

3. The opportunities they give to their Nike Training Club app Superusers. Example: Jenae Frick of Yoga.Eat.Run who is right now in Beaverton, OR for a photo shoot and meet and greet with Marie Purvis. It is so incredible that they invite ambassadors of their brand to meet them!

2. Their tireless pursuit of perfection in the world of sports and training.

1. The number one reason I love Nike Women is because they have inspired me to connect with others who enjoy fitness as much as I do, to start a blog, and to always strive for my best. I have become stronger in my over 7000 minutes of training with their Nike Training Club app and have shared it with many of my friends.

My number one goal right now is to work as hard as I can to become the best athlete I can be, master Nike Training Club and eventually join this amazing team of women who create the Nike Women experience!

Thanks Nike Women for inspiring me to never quit believing.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Perfect Pull-ups

Pull-ups are often thought of as an exercise that women cannot do. This could not be further from the truth. All you need to do to master the pull-up is put in a bit of practice. I recently put this statement to the test and could not have been more happy with the results. (No, that isn't me in the photo, but my arms are definitely looking more toned and defined.)

Step 1: Decide that you WILL do a pull-up. It is always easy to fail when you don't believe in yourself and tell yourself that you will do something. So let go of your fear and tackle this head on.

Step 2: Get the help of an ambitious friend from the gym or a pull-up machine with an assist bar for you to step on. Do 5 to 10 reps with assistance, repeating the cycle 3 times.

Step 3: Perform "negatives." To do this get a friend to give you a hundred percent assistance on the upward pull of the pull-up and then lower yourself as slowly as possible until you are hanging from the bar without assistance. Repeat for 5 to 10 reps, repeating the cycle 3 times.

Step 4: As you begin to feel stronger begin attempting 1 or 2 pull-ups on your own. After doing these drills for a few weeks you will be surprised how easy one pull-up becomes.

I did this workout at my gym for a few months and now I can do 10 pull-ups without stopping. It's an amazing feeling to accomplish this task and I know with some practice you will be a pro in no time. Good luck and happy training.

All the best,


Monday, March 5, 2012

Stair Power

Stairs are not easy. They are intimidating and can vary from a few steps to hundreds. Stairs are integral to most training plans. Not only do they strengthen and tone muscles but they enhance our mental and physical state. When you have conquered a flight of hundreds of stairs in your everyday training, then you feel like you can conquer anything in a race. Stairs help to build your stamina in every way.

I used to dislike stairs. Everyday in basketball practice we would do laps up and down the stairs from the court to the balcony and back. They were killer workouts and there were some days when I just wanted to give up. I never stopped and not stopping is what made me into the athlete I am today. Stairs taught me to keep going even when I feel like I can't continue. 

Elite athletes are made by the work they put in when no one is watching. They are made in the moments in training when they do not give up, even when no one is watching. Often I think the difference between winning and losing is that extra effort from the months of training put in when no one was watching. Nothing in sports happens by chance. Put in the work now and you will see results later. Conquer your worst fear, tackle the stairs, work harder everyday. Never let yourself quit. 

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Training for Your Next Race

I enjoy running. It it one of the best exercises for cardiovascular fitness and is great for relieving stress and anxiety. I have completed numerous 5k races, one half-marathon and one full marathon. Recently I  have reduced my daily mileage due to a knee injury, but since I have been steadily improving I have begun to think about increasing my mileage again.

My next race will be a 5k in June and then a half marathon in October. I may pick a few shorter distance races in between these two races, that will just depend on how they fit into my training schedule. All this training has made me think about how I want to train for my next race. Do I want to train towards reaching a time goal, or do I want to train more for increasing my endurance and ability to run an entire race without stopping and walking at all when I feel fatigued?

Today I met a man on the tennis court who runs ultra marathons, which are all races consisting of greater than 26.2 mile stints. I was impressed with his excitement about the races he does and how many miles he runs weekly. One thing he said to me surprised me. He said that in some ways running an ultra marathon was easier than running a marathon because you are running a slower pace for more time. In a marathon it is more like a long sprint and you can race more for time than for endurance. I had never thought of racing this way and it was interesting to me to see a different perspective from my own.

While I don't think I will be completing my first ultra marathon anytime soon, it is an interesting perspective and has changed my idea of marathon training. I think for my next half-marathon I will focus more on my speed than my endurance. I have never been a fast runner, but perhaps with more devotion to speed rather than long runs I will be able to shave some minutes off my next race. 

What is your approach to running distances and training? Do you run more to increase endurance, seed or both? 

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Make the Best of Any Situation

I love this picture! I think it says everything that needs to be said about pushing yourself and making the best of any situation. No matter what life throws at you, take on the challenge and make yourself stronger than before.

It's important to always think positively and allow yourself to grow from difficult and seemingly impossible situations. Find a way to conquer the toughest situations in your life and use them to better yourself.

It's no secret that I am NOT flexible. So for the month of March I am challenging myself to stretch with the Nike Training Club Shawn Johnson stretch workout. It's 15 minutes a day and works every major muscle group. If you want to join me in this challenge download the Nike Training Club app on iTunes and start stretching today. I'll post about my results the first week of April so stay tuned!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Nike Training Club and Goals

Fitness goals are always changing for me. I tend to jump from one goal to the next. This last year I conquered my goal of running my first marathon and beginning my Taekwondo journey. I also achieved my goal of reaching all of the current rewards and workouts on my Nike Training Club app. 

Since 2012 began I have been working towards achieving a personal best on my next half marathon, obtaining my personal trainer certification, getting Nike Training Club certified and finally seeing definition in my abs. 

So far it has been a great year. I have been featured on the Nike blog (which is a bit of a dream come true), will be featured in an upcoming issue of Tennis View Magazine, and am working towards achieving my other goals for the year. I have been keeping on track with my nutrition goals and stayed committed to going to the gym at least 5 times a week. 

Working for Nike is my ultimate goal and Nike Master Trainer Marie Purvis is my ultimate inspiration. I hope one day to be able to meet her, let her know how much she has inspired me, and if all my dreams were to come true, to train with her and all the wonderful athletes at Nike. I would also like to train with one of my favorite fellow bloggers, Jenae Frick of Yoga.Eat.Run, who recently got the opportunity to be flown to Nike for a shoot as a Nike Training Club super user. Talk about a dream come true! Way to go Jenae! 

The Nike Training Club workout is popping up all over the country. It can be found on your iphone app, at a local university, Nike stores and at select 24 hour fitness locations. I have completed nearly 7000 minutes of training with the NTC app and can speak for how well it trains the body. I have never felt this fit. The exercises Nike Training Club provides are made to train the whole body and leave you feeling shredded. 

One neat feature of the app that few other training apps or videos can provide is the amount of celebrity athlete workouts. From olympic gold medalist gymnast Shawn Johnson to track superstar Allyson Felix, there is something on this app for everyone. Also included are recipes that help to keep you eating clean. With continual updates and new workouts this app is dynamic and relevant. Check it out today, you won't be disappointed. 

Nike provides an image, a brand, a lifestyle and a heritage unlike any other. To be a part of that is to be a part of something special. My dream is to become a part of that lifestyle and I am working towards that goal every day.