It’s time for week 3 of flog! This week was all about our favorite places, so I thought I’d show you one of my favorite places.
Head over to Riley’s blog today to check out the other flog videos.
It’s time for week 3 of flog! This week was all about our favorite places, so I thought I’d show you one of my favorite places.
Head over to Riley’s blog today to check out the other flog videos.
It’s flog week 2 time!
This week was “1 to 3”, where you style 1 piece of clothing 3 ways.
I think I’m starting to let myself go (fashion wise). It started with an innocent appreciation of ugly but functional apparel, like Birkenstocks and fanny packs. Now I think the “function over form” philosophy is taking over my whole style. I mean, I wore socks with sandals the other day. Next thing you know I’m gonna be wearing visors and orthopedic slip-on shoes.
The only piece of non-athletic clothing I’ve bought over the past few months is a pair of very old thrifted jean shorts. I know they are probably ugly but I can’t help but enjoy their 90s dad vibe and indestructible comfort. In this video I will attempt to put together three outfits for three different occasions. I probably look like an idiot but it was a fun challenge!
I love the 4th!
We started the day early at the hot air balloon festival. I’d been seeing these balloons all over on my morning runs for the previous couple days, but we thought it would be cool to see them launch up close. Unfortunately, the weather didn’t permit an actual launch, but they at least inflated the balloons to give everyone a little show. At one point there was this huge gust of wind that blew over an inflated balloon and everyone was like screaming and running away, kinda like this. It was pretty funny.
After that we walked over to center street, where we got a cronut from Bianca’s (highly recommend) and watched the first half hour of the parade. (How much parade do you *really* need to see, ya know?) We headed home and took a quick nap since we’d woken up at 5am for the balloons.
Next we hopped on the scooter and rode up to the canyon and generally around town. We stopped at the freedom days festival to walk around and check stuff out. For lunch, we went to Brasas with my brother for our favorite tacos.
The afternoon/evening was spent with a couple friends at our place. We grilled burgers, drank cactus cooler, set up a slip-n-slide (I’d say it was worth the $6.99, but prob no more than that hahah), roasted marshmallows, lit fireworks, and ate apple pie with ice cream.
I have to say, although Huntington Beach is still my favorite place to spend the 4th, Provo does a pretty awesome job with events. The two 4ths I spent in San Francisco were fun but there wasn’t really a great offering of events to go to (but maybe I just wasn’t looking in the right places).
Ah, flog, a long-standing tradition, steeped in a rich background of deep meaning and hidden lore. Oh jk like five of us made some videos once. Either way, it’s back! The week 1 challenge was to make a “Tasty”-style recipe video.
Guys, does making a sandwich count as cooking? Things have been real busy over here and this is what was for dinner last night. I love a classic BLT, but at the same time, I’ve kinda reached the point where a sandwich without avocado is
basically garbage missing something, so of course I had to make that adjustment. I’ve also been told I use too much pepper in my food, but before you freak out, get this: you can actually make your own sandwich however you want. No really, it’s true.
Anyway, here’s my entry. If you want to see some other videos, head on down to Riley’s blog and check them out. Cheers!
Did you know that lot of people on The Internet say you shouldn’t have a dog at all if you work? My question for these people is: what is this alternate universe where people don’t have to work? Because, sign me up.
But seriously, I believe that most dogs are fine with being alone for an average workday as long as you give them enough exercise and attention when you’re home.
When we found ourselves in a good position to bring a new dog into the family (fenced yard, stable jobs, consistent routine), we started talking details. We really wanted a puppy, so we spent a lot of time planning how it would all work.
It’s now been a month since we brought our Yumi pup home and things have gone well. I’ve owned or spent time around dogs my whole life, but raising my first puppy as an adult has been a huge learning experience so far. It’s taken lots of research, work, and patience, but so far so good.
how we make it work with a puppy and full time jobs:
+ plenty of exercise before the workday
+ bully sticks and Kong toys with frozen peanut butter
+ lunchbreak home visits
+ a doggy door and fenced backyard
+ training classes
+ taking her everywhere we can
+ patience, effort, consistency
Btw I was thinking about writing a “puppy survival guide” post which would just be highlights from all my notes over the past few months of research. I know before getting a puppy as an adult I wasn’t sure how it would all work, it would’ve been nice to have someone with recent experience to share their tips. So look out for that!
+ meeting another shiba while hiking
+ having Stephen’s parents in town for a whole week
+ picking and eating cherries from our tree
+ puppy training class, especially the big floofy newfoundland puppy there
+ a dozen incredible peaches (that only lasted two days)
+ finding a big healthy mint plant among the weeds in our front yard
+ Maruchan Instant Lunch. need I say more?
+ a quick weekend in Huntington Beach
+ bringing Yumi to the beach
+ swimming in unusually huge waves
+ that head-swimmy feeling after getting out of the ocean and laying on a towel with closed eyes
also we’re doing flog (a super fun vlog challenge) again! you should make videos with us! read more here.
I’ve been hearing about Ragnar relays for a long time, and I finally had the chance to participate in one this past weekend. This is a long post, but I wanted to write all my thoughts down since this was such a unique experience. Going into it, I had no idea what to expect, so if you’re considering doing one, maybe this post will be helpful!
A Ragnar is a two-day-long relay race where teams each run about 200 miles together. There are typically 2 vans of 6 people, and each runs 3 legs of the race. Your team runs all through the day, all through the night, and then all through the day again, hoping to catch some sleep in the car here and there. And you probably won’t get in a shower, either.
I’ve learned that, for the most part, people hear that and say one of two possible things: 1) “why the hell would you put yourself through that?” or 2) “sign me up RIGHT NOW.” I found myself strongly in the second camp. I didn’t know what to expect but I knew it’d be crazy and exhausting and fun.
Now that it’s over, I still find myself in the second camp. Sure, there were moments along the way when I questioned my own sanity: halfway into a 7-mile 90-degree run, climbing a moonlit hill at 3am when my legs felt sleepy and broken down, tossing and turning in sweaty clothes trying to fit in a much-needed nap at an awkward time of day. But overall, I had so much fun and I’d do it again. (I probably will next year! Who wants to be on my team?)
I was in van 2, which meant we didn’t start running until after the first van finished their six legs. The day of the race, we met at the first major exchange, where we got a safety briefing, picked up our gear, got a stupid airbrush tattoo (that still won’t come off), and walked around the booths.
While we were waiting for runner 6 of van 1 to arrive and hand off the baton to our team, I saw a lady with a dog, so naturally, I walked over to say hi. I asked what kind of dog it was and she said “it’s actually a fox!” A FOX. It was so cute and nice! Not super friendly and wiggly like a typical dog, but it seemed to enjoy my chin scratches. (I of course asked permission to pet it and take the photo, don’t worry)
Finally, we heard from the volunteers that van 1 was arriving soon! aaaaaaaaah. Our first runner took position, grabbed the baton from our other runner, and took off. The rest of us hopped in the van and started driving towards the next exchange. I was really not sure what to expect but feeling super excited.
It only took a few handoffs to see how well organized it was. We would drive past our runner while cheering them on, get to the next exchange, and wait for them to arrive. The next person would get in place, take the baton, and then run their leg.
A few runners later, it was my turn! It was 3:30pm and a sunny 90 degrees. My route was along Pineview Reservoir in Ogden. About five minutes in, I was already really feeling the heat, so I took off my black t-shirt and then realized as the sun beat down on my back that I hadn’t put on any sunscreen. !!!!!! I texted someone in my van about my problem, and a couple miles later, my team was waiting on the side of the road with spray bottles full of cool water and handfuls of sunscreen. Teamwork!!
I had to take a few walk breaks, but I kept a steady pace. I pushed hard that last mile while tallying up my “kills” (the number of runners I passed). This might sound mean, but it’s apparently just a good-spirited Ragnar tradition. You tally them on your van with window paint. Soon, my first leg was done, and I was feeling great.
At one of the exchanges, we saw a Ragnar team van that had a loudspeaker, and a guy was saying stuff like “shoutout to all the ladies who decided to wear spandex today, we salute you” etc. Basically I realized there was no hope for me to ever be as cool as this bro so I pretty much gave up on life. jk, but remember this guy because he comes up again later.
Our last runner in this first portion was a friend of mine who happens to not be a runner, he just hikes a lot and is a generally fast/skinny dude. His route was a steep uphill 8 miles and supposed to be one of the toughest in the whole race. He estimated his pace as best he could, but it apparently wasn’t very accurate. We were taking our time eating dinner at a restaurant when I got a call from him 30 minutes before his projected finish time. “Where are you guys? I’m at the end!” It was hilarious, we were all floored. So we raced over there to exchange with the other van.
After that, we pulled up to a high school and tried to get some sleep. Translation: I rolled around on the grass in my sleeping bag, unable to decide if I was too hot or too cold. The sun hadn’t yet set and I wasn’t remotely tired.
Around midnight, we headed to the next exchange for part 2. My teammates were fast and before I knew it I was up again. It was about 2:30am and colder than I’d expected. Running in the mountains with nothing but a full moon and a headlamp to light my way was exhilarating. I was flying down the hills and passing people every now and then, but towards the end of my route, there was a pretty long hill. I kept a steady cadence, but was exhausted — my legs were shaky and tired and my body did NOT want me to be running at that time. I was breathing hard. I just kept picturing crashing into a cool pillow and pulling clean sheets up over my face. Finally it was over! Crashing in the car for two hours felt almost as good as those clean sheets I was picturing. It was cold and I was SO glad I decided to bring a warm hoodie.
I woke up around 5:30am in the back of the van, scrunched up in a ball and with drool all over my face. Once again, I was getting a phone call from our last runner, done with his route and wondering where everyone was. Once again, we’d underestimated how fast he was. (Who runs a 7:30 mile though? not fair lol) After handing the baton over to van 1, we headed to the final major exchange in Park City to rest until our third legs. But by this point I was feeling too amped after that wonderful two hour nap to sleep any more. At 8:30 we were all awake and gathered around the car to play poker and complain about how sore/tired we were. My stomach was feeling a little upset so I walked over to a nearby convenience store and bought a loaf of the worst/best white bread. (It always seems to make me feel better.)
We exchanged again around 11am. While we were waiting for one of our runners, we overheard loudspeaker spandex bro again. YOU GUYS. He was blasting the Cha Cha Slide full volume and asking people to come party with him and saying they had mountain dew and stuff. LOL. I told my team that we should play poker again and the loser had to go party with him. They visibly recoiled.
Anyway. My last leg was very steep downhill and tons of fun. I think I averaged an 8-minute mile (which is fast for me okay?!) but my quads were burrrrrrrrrning. The views were gorgeous and I was loving life.
The very last leg of the race was only supposed to be 4.5 miles, but literally as we were sending off our last runner, the volunteer was like “oh btw the route changed so it’s now 7 miles.” ?!?!? It was 90 degrees, he didn’t have enough water, and the route was on a trail inaccessible by car. So yeah, we were a little worried.
The rest is a bit of a blur (I was so tired). We drove to wait at the end. When we saw our last runner around the corner, we cheered and jumped out to run across the finish line together. He was a champ and finished the unexpectedly long leg with a great time. We collected our free pizza and ice cream sandwiches and piled in the van for the drive home. We were all exhausted.
I arrived home to find Stephen down the street walking Yumi, which made me super happy, since the last thing I felt like doing was going for a walk. I felt like a bag of bricks. I wasn’t too sore but my body was spent from spending an intense 35 hours on only 2 hours of sleep. After telling Stephen about the race, he got me some enchiladas while I took a long bath. Then for some strange reason I stayed up until 11pm watching The Bachelorette. All I can say is THANK GOODNESS the next day was Sunday and not Monday.
What an incredible weekend!
About a year ago, I looked around my bathroom at what felt like hundreds of random, half-used hair products. Shampoos, 4 different leave-in conditioners, hairsprays, color protectors, heat protectors, mousses, serums, pomades. I was over it. It was expensive and cluttered and my hair still didn’t even look good.
I had read about “no shampoo” but I couldn’t imagine pouring baking soda and apple cider vinegar on my head (?!) So I found a “cleansing conditioner”, which is exactly what it sounds like, and started using it in place of shampoo and conditioner. I also started using only a silicone-free oil product for styling.
After a few days of success, I threw away all my other hair products. (There’s no better feeling than filling up a huge garbage bag of unneeded stuff and removing it from your life.)
These days, my hair is in way better shape and my routine couldn’t be easier. I wash with my conditioner product, hop out of the shower, comb a few drops of oil through it with my fingers, and air dry. Sometimes I spend an extra 2 minutes blow drying my bangs if I want to feel extra fancy.
Personally, I feel like my hair looks a little scruffy most of the time, but people seem to like it and think that I style or curl my hair every day. “Is that your natural hair?!” “It just DRIES like that?” Okay sure, maybe these people are just being nice, but at this point, I don’t even care. I love not having to spend longer than 5 minutes a day making my hair look presentable.
So here’s the routine! I can’t recommend it enough. Keep in mind, though, that everyone’s hair is different. I 100% recommend this routine for anyone with wavy or curly hair, but it might need some tweaks for other hair types.
WTF IS “NO POO”?
First, if you’re not familiar with the basis of “no-shampoo” or “no-poo”, here it is. The idea is to avoid two chemicals: 1) sulfates and 2) silicones. Sulfates are often found in shampoo — they’re what make it foam and bubble up when you scrub it into your hair. Silicones are common in conditioners, mousses, gels, pomades, etc. They’re sticky and bind to your hair, making it shiny and smooth, but can build up over time, making your hair greasy and limp. Sulfates are harsh on your hair, but they remove silicone so it doesn’t build up over time. BUT. what if you avoided both of these chemicals? You wouldn’t need the harsh cleansing power of sulfate, so you could avoid that damage to your hair.
It’s important to know about these two chemicals so you can “troubleshoot”. If your hair seems to be building up with sticky product over time, you’re probably using something with silicone in it. If your hair is frizzy and fried, the sulfates in your shampoo are too harsh.
I spent years resisting “no poo” because it just seemed like so much work to completely change up my routine. I didn’t want to read huge lists of chemicals and try to figure out what constituted a sulfate or silicone. But, lemme tell ya, it’s been so so worth it. It has saved me so much time and money.
The only products I regularly use on my hair are co-wash and oil-based serum. For the cowash, I like either this or this. They’re pretty similar. The first one is a slightly better product but the pump bottle in the latter is way more convenient, so take your pick. To use the cowash, massage it into your hair and scalp in the shower and rinse. You can repeat if you want.
For the serum, I have been using the same bottle of this for about a year now. You only need a few drops. Pretty much any oil-based serum will work, just make sure it doesn’t have silicone (any ingredient ending in “-cone” should draw suspicion). After towel-drying my hair, I rub a few drops between my fingers and gently “scrunch” it in, focusing on the ends and avoiding the roots.
If you use things like hairspray or mOuse, just make sure they’re silicone free. If I ever use a product with silicone in it (i.e. borrowed a friend’s hairspray) I wash with normal shampoo after.
Washing: These products are gentle enough to wash your hair every day, which I typically do because of my exercise routine. But if you find your hair happier being washed every 2 or 3 days, go for it!
Brushing: Personally, I don’t ever brush my hair. I feel like it messes with the natural curl pattern and makes my hair frizzier. It’s also convenient to not need to own a hairbrush If you are going to brush, at least avoid brushing when it’s wet, or it could stretch and damage the strands.
Heat styling: I straighten and curl my hair on occasion without too much worry, but I wouldn’t do it every day.
Drying: Towel drying should be gentle, without too much rubbing. During air-drying, I try to avoid disturbing my hair too much (no combing it with fingers or letting it get windblown). Once it’s dry, it should be fine to touch.
After switching from normal shampoo, you may spend a few weeks with slightly greasy hair. After years of being stripped of its natural oils, your hair and scalp has probably gotten used to overproducing oil to compensate. Give your body time to adjust. I have naturally dry hair so I’ve never needed it, but I bet dry shampoo can work wonders during this stage!
It could also take you awhile to figure out exactly how much oil/serum you need to put in your hair to help it stay shiny without getting greasy.
It could also take awhile before you’re really happy with the way your hair looks. It took a few months of this routine before my frizz started to calm down. If your hair is very damaged, it just takes time for it to heal. It also takes experimenting on your part to learn what works best for your hair.
If you have a high-maintenance haircut, you may not be able to rely on an easy routine like this. When I had a pixie cut, I had to blow dry it or it dried really weird. Work with a stylist to find a haircut that works with your natural hair texture and growth direction. A good haircut is worth the money in the hours of styling time it saves you.
I’m curious, has anyone tried a similar routine? What works best for your hair?
Let’s talk about running.
As y’all probably know, I’m doing my first full marathon in October. Well, that’s the goal at least. Jury’s still out on whether I’ll actually finish it. I’m also doing a Ragnar this weekend and a half in July. You could probably maybe kinda say I like running.
Earlier this year I was consistently running 25ish miles per week or more. My weekend run was up to 13 miles. Then, as it always does, stuff happened. Things started getting busier at work, we got a puppy, all our summer weekend trips and weddings started coming in full force. These are all things I enjoy putting my time into, but my days have been pretty jam packed, and I may have overbooked myself this month.
So I went two entire weeks only doing one 4 mile run. I felt like I’d totally fallen off the bandwagon. I’ve also been eating a lot of convenience/junk food, so I haven’t exactly been feeling up to running anyway.
As a last resort, I’ve turned to treadmill running, which I can do in the heat of the day during my lunch break, or even late at night when the sun is long gone. I would way rather be outside, but at least I get to catch up on The Bachelorette when I run. (Seriously though, who has time for 2 two-hour shows in a week?)
So I did 3 slow treadmill miles Monday, and 6 slightly less slow ones last night at midnight. The 6 miler was an exercise in patience (treadmills, super boring, yadda yadda) but it at least reminded me of how much I love longer runs. I don’t really hit my stride until mile 3 or 4, but once I do, I almost always feel awesome.
I’m now officially 18 weeks out from the marathon and dead set on sticking to my training plan come hell or high water. Even if I have to run at 11pm every night, I gotta stick to it, or I’ll be hurting on race day. Well, I’ll probably be hurting no matter what, but still. I absolutely need to quit eating so much crap so I can stop getting cramps and stomachaches when I run, but other than that, I’m feeling like I’m mostly back on the wagon.
Just can’t wait for that puppy to be old enough to run with me!
TL;DR: I’m a huge wimp.
When I go hiking alone (if you can even call it hiking) I generally stick to the same 2 or 3 trails. They’re close to home, my phone service works all along the way, and I’ve hiked them a million times before.
Why? It’s not so much a fear of getting lost on the trail, as much as being unable to find the trail at all. I’m sorry to say this has happened to me a lot. I get all excited for a new adventure, only to spend hours trying to find the trailhead and eventually give up and go home. The thing is, most trails don’t have Google Maps directions. And Lord knows I am useless at getting places without step by step directions and a pointy arrow, à la Crazy Taxi.
Anyway, when I get the chance to hike with other people, I guess I tend to bite off more than I can chew. In this case, Kessler Peak.
Only about 2 miles to the top, but hello 3000ft elevation gain. Still though, it’s just 4 miles, I thought. Piece of cake, I thought. Haha, well, I profoundly underestimated how steep it was and how horrible I am at inclines. I spent the whole climb with a hammering heart, labored breathing, and blistering heels. The snow and ice (and my slight fear of heights) significantly slowed us down, and by the time we got halfway there, I was starting to get worried about not making it home in time for Yumi’s first vet appointment (which if you know me you know I was NOT missing).
As I started gaining confidence in my ability to scale up and down those icy ridges, I started losing confidence that we were even following the right trail. We were also really pushing the edge of what time I needed to be heading home. So, with the peak staring us pretty much straight in the face, we turned around and raced back down the mountain.
Even though I didn’t make it to the top, climbing that 2800ish feet was worth it. The views were incredible, and there’s nothing quite like the silence of an unpopular hiking trail way up in the mountains.
I wish I’d gone a bit earlier so I could’ve made it to the top. I also wish I wasn’t such a wimp. I need to work on that. Living in San Francisco made me suck at dealing with outdoorsy things like scrapey tree branches and bugs and slippery clumps of pinecones.
But, now that I know slipping in snow isn’t the worst thing in the world (you can just catch yourself with your heels before sliding down the mountain!!), I’m gonna do this hike again. And this time, since I know how to get to the trail, I can even go solo and take my sweet time getting to the top.