Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Tevasphere: Live Better Stories

Tevasphere - Live Better Stories
Tevashpere - Live Better Stories

Some months ago Kovas and I were super fortunate to receive some Tevasphere trail shoes, a Tevasphere tech tee, a GoPro camera and a Camelbak hydration pack from Teva.  It all came with the directions to "live better stories."  And so we have - from mountains to beaches and everything in between, we've been using our trail shoes, tech tees, Camelbaks and GoPros outdoors - enjoying more time as a family and exploring new places and activities.

Teva.com
Get out, do more - these are my plans for the New Year and beyond.
Camping, kayaking, geocaching, hiking, swimming, skiing and more -
live better stories!




Disclaimer:  these products were sent to us for review purposes.



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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Midweek Motivation

ZOOMA - perfect conditions
If you wait for perfect conditions, you'll never get anything done.
This is especially true for winter running in the Midwest. :)

From ZOOMA FB

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Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Winter Running Clothing Guide

Here in Chicago we've had some cold days, but Sunday night we got our first real snowfall of the season.  Yesterday I headed out for a breezy, chilly run in the fresh snow.  I overdressed slightly but was still comfortable...

On my run I remembered a great layering guide that Kelly the Culinarian had shared on Facebook:

The Runner's Soul Winter Layering Guide
The Runner's Soul Winter Layering Guide

I hate it when my fingers and toes are cold so I wore my running gloves covered with mittens and wool socks (I love my DarnTough running socks!) and running shoes.  Overkill on the hands, but I prefer my hands too warm rather than cold.  Unfortunately running through the snow left my feet wet and a little cold...I'm thinking it may be time to invest in winter running shoes.

Newtons in the snow
Newtons and DarnTough Vermont wool socks

What kind of shoes do you wear to run in the snow and cold?


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Thursday, December 5, 2013

Three for Thursday

We started out our Thanksgiving day as we have the last several years - with our local Bonfield 5k.  This year Tazer, Gaigai, Munchkin, my sister and I ran, while Kovas and Little A cheered us on and snapped pictures.  Tazer and Gaigai took off at their own pace with friends and I hung with (chased) Munchkin through the crowd.  Fun morning with family and friends and healthy beginning to a day of giving thanks and eating. :)

2013 Bonfield Express 5k
2013 Bonfield Express 5k
Munchkin has wanted to go to St. Louis for some time, so we took advantage of the long weekend to do so.  Friday we headed down after breakfast.  Along the way we stopped at two Missouri wineries which had beautiful views and decent wine.  After checking in at the hotel, we had the pleasure of meeting Super Kate and Mike for dinner.  In the morning we walked around downtown and took the pod up to the top of the arch.  On our way home we stopped in Springfield for lunch and some more sightseeing - Lincoln's home and tomb.  Unfortunately the presidential library was closed - maybe another time...

Midwest Multisport Life - St. Louis, MO
St. Louis, MO

Still have Thanksgiving day left-overs?  Kovas roasted a huge turkey before Thanksgiving which turned out super tasty, but way too much for one meal.  So Kovas made some great meals with the leftovers - check out the recipes and wine pairings at 50 States of Wine.

50 states of wine - turkey leftovers
Turkey leftovers and wine pairing

What's your favorite way to eat Thanksgiving leftovers? 

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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Helpful How to: Turning Off Garmin Forerunner 210

Don't you hate it when you log an awesome run, and then your Garmin locks up?  I thought my only option was to do a hard reset, which is always a bummer because it erases any stored information.  You may already know this - especially if you read the owner's manual :),  but I was excited to recently discover that when my watch locks up, I can turn it off and then back on.  Simple -- and no lost runs:)


If your Garmin Forerunner 210 locks up, try turning it off before performing a hard reset. To turn off simply simultaneously press and hold light and start/stop. When asked "turn off", arrow up to yes and press page/menu. To turn back on simultaneously press and hold light and start/stop.


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Friday, November 22, 2013

Friday Funny

My husband shared this yesterday...

The most expensive part of having kids is all the wine you have to drink.

Happy Friday!
Any fun plans for the weekend?

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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Great American Smokeout

American Cancer Society - Great American Smokeout
The American Cancer Society marks the Great American Smokeout on the third Thursday of November each year. 
Today is the American Cancer Society's Great American Smokeout.  Although the number of smokers in our country has declined significantly, nearly 1 in 5 adults still smoke.  

Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US, yet about 43.8 million Americans still smoke cigarettes — Nearly 1 in every 5 adults. As of 2010, there were also 13.2 million cigar smokers in the US, and 2.2 million who smoke tobacco in pipes — other dangerous and addictive forms of tobacco (American Cancer Society).

Here are some more tobacco-related cancer facts:

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States for both men and women. (Source: Cancer Facts; Figures 2013)

Lung cancer is the most preventable form of cancer death in our society. (Source: Cancer Facts; Figures 2013)

Lung cancer estimates for 2013 (Source: Cancer Facts; Figures 2013):
New cases of lung cancer: 228,190
Males: 118,080
Females: 110,110
Deaths from lung cancer: 159,480
Males: 87,260
Females: 72,220

Besides lung cancer, tobacco use also increases the risk for cancers of the mouth, lips, nasal cavity (nose) and sinuses, larynx (voice box), pharynx (throat), esophagus (swallowing tube), stomach, pancreas, kidney, bladder, uterus, cervix, colon/rectum, ovary (mucinous), and acute myeloid leukemia. (Source: Cancer Facts; Figures 2013)

Cigarette use has declined dramatically since the release of the first US Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health in 1964. Even so, about 21.6% of men and 16.5% of women still smoked cigarettes in 2011, with about 78% of these people smoking daily. (Source: Current cigarette smoking among adults – United States, 2011)

Cigarette smoking among adults age 18 and older who smoked 30 cigarettes or more a day went down significantly from 2005 to 2011 – from 12.6% to 9.1%. But the number of adults who smoke 1 to 9 cigarettes a day went up during this same time – from 16.4% to 22%. And still, nearly 44 million American adults smoke. (Source: Current cigarette smoking among adults – United States, 2011)

Cigars contain many of the same carcinogens (cancer-causing substances) found in cigarettes. Between 1997 and 2007, sales of little cigars had increased by 240%, while large cigar sales decreased by 6%. Cigar smoking causes cancers of the lung, mouth, throat, larynx (voice box), esophagus (swallowing tube), and probably the pancreas. (Source: Cancer Facts; Figures 2013)

Little cigars are about the same size and shape as cigarettes, come in packs of 20, but unlike cigarettes, they can be candy or fruit flavored. In most states, they cost much less than cigarettes, making them affordable to youth. A 2011 CDC survey found that about 24% of 12th grade boys and about 10% of the 12th grade girls had smoked cigars in the past 30 days. (Sources: Cancer Facts; Figures 2011; CDC Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance --- United States, 2011)

In 1997, nearly half (48%) of male high school students and more than one-third (36%) of female students reported using some form of tobacco – cigarettes, cigars, or smokeless tobacco products – in the past month. The percentages went down to 28% for male students and 18% for female students in 2011. But among 12th graders, 37% of the boys and 25% of the girls had used tobacco in the past month. (Sources: Cancer Facts; Figures 2010; CDC Current Tobacco Use Among Middle and High School Students – United States, 2011; CDC Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance --- United States, 2011)

Each year, about 3,400 non-smoking adults die of lung cancer as a result of breathing secondhand smoke. Each year secondhand smoke also causes about 46,000 deaths from heart disease in people who are not current smokers. (Source: Cancer Facts; Figures 2013)

Smokeless tobacco products are a major source of cancer-causing nitrosamines and a known cause of human cancer. They increase the risk of developing cancer of the mouth and throat, esophagus (swallowing tube), and pancreas. (Source: Cancer Prevention; Early Detection Facts and Figures 2010)

Smokeless tobacco products are less lethal but are not a safe alternative to smoking. Using smokeless tobacco can lead to nicotine addiction. Use of tobacco in any form harms health. (Source: Cancer Prevention; Early Detection Facts and Figures 2010)


Ready to quit?  
Check out some great resources at the CDC and the 
American Cancer Society.

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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Running Along Portland's Riverfront

Portland running
Running along the Willamette River

Kovas and I had the pleasure of attending the Wine Tourism Conference in Portland this past week.  We had some great meals and drank a lot of great wine - to make up for it, we walked to our dinners and ran 2 of 4 mornings -- not bad :).  The multi-use path that we ran on along the river and bridges was beautiful, but definitely more heavily used by bicyclists.  Pretty cool seeing so many cyclists commuting to work...

No other city in the United States has more cyclists per capita, and no other town has a coffee shop like Fresh Pot, which boasts 25 chairs and parking for 26 bicycles. We have trains of elementary-school bike commuters, and we have Move By Bike, a relocation-company that trundles couches across town on overstacked bike trailers (bicycling.com).


Do you run on vacation or use it as an excuse to rest?


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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

2013 Wine Tourism Conference

2013 Wine Tourism Conference
2013 Wine Tourism Conference

Kovas and I are excited to be heading to Portland, Oregon for the Wine Tourism Conference.  We will be joining 200+ wine tourism professionals for wine, workshops, excursions, wine-pairing dinner, and the first-ever Great American Wine Festival.  This will be an opportunity for us to add two more states to the 50 States of Wine list (we'll be visiting a winery in Washington also) -- plus spend some quality time away as a couple:)

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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Midweek Motivation - Not Quitting

not quitting - walt disney
The difference in winning and losing is most often not quitting.
~ Walt Disney
from ZOOMA FB

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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Tuesday Tidbits- Cold Weather Running Tips

Three good runs again this week - first with Kovas and Little A, a solo Halloween run and a weekend run with Tazer and Gaigai.  Ran everyone in the family except Munchkin :(

Chilly weekend run with Tazer and Gaigai.

With the temperature dropping, here are some quick cold weather running tips:

Dress in thin wicking layers, and avoid overdressing.

Protect hands and feet.

Wear a hat - about 40% of heat is lost through your head.

Be visible - If you are going to run in the dark, wear reflective clothing to be seen and safe.

Take it easy - Give your body time to warm up.

Have any cold weather running tips to share?


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Friday, November 1, 2013

Fun Things Friday

After last weekend's Windy City Ski and Snowboard Show, we're excited for our trip out west this spring, but also to do some midwest skiing.  The show itself had lots of reps from resorts both midwest and west, plus clothing, gear and kids' activities - including a zip line that Tazer had a chance to try, and a snowboarding "course" Munchkin enjoyed.

Windy City Ski and Snowboard Show (courtesy of Midwest Multisport Life)
Kovas and I had the pleasure to attend the Simply Italian Great Wine U.S. Tour - lots of nice whites, reds and bubblies from various regions of Italy, plus hot and cold food to go along.  Lovely way to spend an afternoon - read more about it at 50 States of Wine.


The kiddos have been having fun with Create 2 Destroy, a Crayola morphix construction compound play set.  Check out Kovas' Crayola Create 2 Destroy giveaway and vote for our video (Midwest Multisport Life) on Crayola’s Facebook page: http://on.fb.me/19uY2ft.


Despite the rain all 4 of our kiddos had a blast trick or treating yesterday.  After examining their haul, they each got to choose 10 pieces and the rest gets sent to school.  Both our elementary and middle schools collect and send the candy overseas to the troops.  Nice treat for the soldiers and less temptation for us!


Happy Friday!

Any fun plans for the weekend?

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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Midweek Motivation


Photo courtesy of Flickr
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Tuesday Training

Well not exactly training, but I'm running more consistently again:)  Soon after ZOOMA Chicago, my work schedule picked up, and since I work early mornings, my running suffered.  I've made it a priority again and gained energy and (some) needed stress relief.  I had a nice long(er) run on the weekend plus two shorter runs during the week pushing Little A.  He loves going to the park, so we try to stop at parks during the runs.  Here's a little clip of him running around the block before playing on the jungle gym...I love the little hop in his run:)




We do have one more "race" this year - our local Thanksgiving 5k, but this is a fun run with family and friends.

Have any races before the new year?

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Thursday, October 17, 2013

Don't Worry, Be Happy!

Looking for ways to be happier?  Here are some scientifically backed tips, from Social-Consciousness.com

social-consciousness.com
I have chosen to be happy, because it is good for my health.  ~Voltaire

1. Exercise more

2. Sleep more – you'll be less sensitive to negative emotions

3. Move closer to work – a short commute is worth more than a big house

4. Spend time with friends and family – don't regret it on your deathbed

5. Go outside – happiness is maximized at 13.9°C/57.02°F

6. Help others – 100 hours a year is the magical number

7. Practice smiling – it can alleviate pain

8. Plan a trip – but don't take one

9. Meditate – rewire your brain for happiness

10. Practice gratitude – increase both happiness and life satisfaction

Quick last fact: Getting older will make yourself happier

Read the complete article and more at social-consciousness.com

Have any other happy tips?

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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Midweek Motivation


You can do it - overcome your obstacles!
From TooTallFritz FB

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Pumpkin Mousse

A couple months ago I inherited a Kitchen Aid stand mixer from my grandmother.  I was so excited to try it out, but weeks passed - this weekend Tazer and I put it to some good use - we made pumpkin mousse one evening and chocolate mousse another. :)

Tazer's Pumpkin Mousse

This is a super simple (especially since I just supervised), delicious, no cook dessert.  Tazer picked up this recipe from our local grocer The Lemon Tree.

In large mixing bowl, beat until smooth
1 pkg (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened   
1/4 c sugar

Beat in
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin

Add
1 pkg (3.4 oz) instant vanilla pudding mix
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Gradually beat in
1 c cold milk

Fold in
1 carton (4 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed

Spoon about 1/4 c each into serving dishes.  Crumble 2 gingersnaps over each.  Divide remaining pumpkin mixture among dishes.  Garnish with whole gingersnap.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.  Enjoy!

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