espresso time!

I found this is my favorite way to start the day...I am improving on my barista skills. My newest thing is making an iced mocha with the espresso. Very yummy.

blueberry muffins!

 It doesn't seem like it should be Monday already. I guess that is because I worked most of the weekend. I'm thankful to have a job, so I'm not complaining.

As you probably know, I am a wine drinker. Do you have one of these handy tools? John is demonstrating. This is a wonderful thing! And we bought it at a liquidation store for $5.00. Awesome deal.
Opening the Chardonnay with an automatic corkscrew

removing the cork from the machine
I love tools that make my life easier. Do you have any neat tools that you use often?

What are you doing to make your life better today? Have a Happy Monday!


I love running outside!

1 mile :16.49

I decided to run outside today since the weather has been so nice this weekend! It was great. I'm still alternating running/walking. It sure is taking me a long time to improve my pace. I found that I enjoy running outside much more than the boring treadmill. I jogged around a favorite spot of mine that has a trail around a pond usually filled with ducks. However, today I noticed that half of the pond was very unattractive due to construction in the area. After I reached the loop around the pond, I found the other end looked much better. I felt sorry for the poor ducks. It used to be such a lovely area with a fountain to enjoy the scenery. This is what Gateway Island used to look like.

Its been a busy weekend since I have been trying to catch up on work due to my being sick last week. I have worked a few hours here and a few hours there and feel much better about my workload. I also found the time to spend with my youngest daughter yesterday for a short shopping trip and attending a church service. It was a fun mommy/daughter afternoon!


I began attending church again, especially since it was one of my goals for the New Year. I'm glad that I made this decision.

It's amazing how being involved in a church can inspire me. Look at the video below from the praise team at my church, WOC.


I'm very pleased that I found Zumba fitness for PS3 on our shopping trip. Can't wait to try it! I also got it at a discounted price. Love that!

Now, that it's almost the end of January, are you sticking to your resolutions?



 I've been sick for a few days this week. I have not been able to get my workouts in and my healthy eating plan has consisted of eating crackers and drinking Sprite. The feeling of nausea I have had for several days was the onset of a migrane. I should have thought of that. If I had taken a migrane pill a few days ago, I would have been better days ago. I haven't had a migrane in months, and I usually don't get the nausea with them. But, once I figured that out, I took a pill this afternoon which made me sleep for 4-5 hours. I feel much better. I am so glad. I don't like feeling bad. I have tried to work at home some but I'm sure I'll be behind at work next week after missing 2 days of work. I'll probably have to go to the office this weekend to see how much work is piled on my desk.

I think I'll run in the morning.  Murfreesboro weather is forecasted to be mild and an outdoor run sounds lovely. The treadmill is getting boring to me.

While I slept today, Tiger was getting into everything! He loves exploring and was missing the attention he usually gets from me.

Have a great weekend! 



To all the runners out there....do you ever have dreams about running? I remember a very vivid dream I had last night. I was running outdoors and seemed to never get tired or fatigued. (definitely a dream!) It seemed like I was running for hours without any pain. I was running through the streets of a town with lots of scenery. I thought it was a very interesting dream and wonder if my dream is trying to tell me something. Like...."keep training, you'll get there one day." Or, "don't give up." Or, "when this snow melts, get outside and off the treadmill. You will enjoy that more". I'm listening....


Busy week

I haven't had much time for blogging this week. It's been a busy one! I'm looking forward to The Biggest Loser tonight. Any thoughts on Season 11? I really don't like the contestants training with the unknowns being away from the rest of the contestants for the first 4 weeks. I don't remember the contestants since I haven't seen them.

My Tuesday ritual is to go home after work, eat a light, healthy dinner and watch my favorite show! I am also due for a workout today. So I will try and fit that in too. I did a Taebo workout on Sunday followed by a training run. I am still a little sore. I love the way Billy Blanks makes me feel so strong and powerful!

I took my daughters to Applebee's for dinner last night. It was excellent. I ordered a spicy shrimp wrap. But....I woke up in the middle of the night so thirsty. It really makes you think twice about eating out when you don't really know how much salt is added to their meals.

I hope you are having a wonderful week so far!


Move It and Lose It in 2011

Keyword Ad Tag:  moveit Eat Less. Move More. Lose Weight. Feel Great. Dr. Oz, Sharecare and Nike are joining...



It's Friday-eve. It's my last day of my workweek and I always look forward to that. I have announced that tomorrow will be Gina-day! Every once in a while I treat myself to a day just for ME! Of course, it probably won't last all day, but I'll take what I can get.

Tonight, after work, I cycled on the stationary bike while watching a few Dr. Oz episodes I had recorded. It was a good workout. I'm scheduled to run tomorrow, so I wanted to do a light workout. I'm so proud of myself for fitting in a few workouts on my workdays! Go Gina!

Here's what I had for dinner tonight:
Chicken Florentine with an applesauce cup and green tea
Don't think for a minute that I'm a gourmet cook or anything. This was actually one of those skillet dinners. Very easy to make and very tasty also. I love pasta recipes with spinach.

I recently subscribed to Runners World magazine. I thought this is a good idea since I'm trying to run more and I need all the help I can get. I got my Runners World free gift in the mail today. So, while eating dinner I scanned over the tips it provided for beginning runners. I was very interested to read a tip that beginners should focus more on minutes than on miles. Maybe that's what I need to do.

After dinner, I plan on relaxing and enjoying a glass of chardonnay!

Do you have any tips for beginning runners? I'd love to hear from you.


Celebrate small victories!

I came home after work and decided to get in a workout. I know you are supposed to stretch before running and I did. But I obviously didn't stretch out enough. After running about 1/2 mile, my right leg started hurting. This is the same leg/ankle that I have problems with. I slowed my pace, hoping it would get better. But it didn't. I ended up walking for a few minutes then slowly began running again. This helped a little. I was able to finish one mile. But my pace tonight didn't suffer too much. I finished at 16:55 for 1 mile. The last run I completed at 16:00. I was hoping to improve my pace, but pain got in the way.

I'll concentrate on the positive. I completed a workout on a weekday.  So, it can be done! Celebrating small victories!

My next run will be on Friday. I expect a much better outcome. And to quote one of my favorite movies, Gone With The Wind, "I'll think about that tomorrow. After all, tomorrow is another day..." -Scarlett O'Hara.

better than sharing donuts! on Twitpic

better than sharing donuts! on Twitpic

I decided to bring something to work today to share with co-workers. Instead of donuts, I brought grapefruit! I think my coworkers will appreciate that!


First event of 2011

I signed up for my first event for 2011! This will be my 3rd year to participate in March For Babies. This is a special cause to me because my first born daughter was premature. If you aren't familar with this cause, "The mission of March of Dimes is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality." - March of Dimes website. You can support me or join my team by clicking on the link above or the box found on the left side of my webpage.

This is a 2 mile walk/run. So, I thought what better way to work up to running a 5k, than to do a 2 miler first. I have over 100 days until the event, so I'm going to work up to 2 miles and hopefully be able to run the whole thing. This will help me prepare for the 5k I will do in October. Baby steps. I'm still training on the Couch to 5k program, but have slacked a little. I have spent more time lately doing other cardio exercise than running. But it's time to get back on track!

A few hours later I decided to workout. I wanted to see what my pace is for 2 miles so I know what to work on for the March for Babies event. After stretching and a 5 min ride on the stationary bike, I hit the treadmill.

I started with walking and eased into running. I was able to run .75 mi without stopping. That is a first for me. With the couch to 5k plan, I have been alternating between walking 2-3 min and running 2-3 min for several cycles. I was happy to see that I could run for longer than I expected. I walked most of the second mile but did a few bursts of running. I ended up finishing the 2 miles in around 36 minutes.

This must sound really slow to those of you that are professional runners, but for me this was about on track. Now I know what to work on. I'd like to be able to run the 2 miles non-stop first, then work on the speed. I'm glad I have over 100 days to get ready.

After my running workout, I decided to pop in my newest exercise DVD, The Biggest Loser Cardio max!
I love this workout! And the cool down/stretching section was just what I needed. I don't want to be sore tomorrow!

I'm also using my Biggest Loser calendar to log my workouts.

I really like this calendar since it has recipes and tips included for each month.

I love the way working out makes me feel. When I lose motivation or feel like slacking off, I wish I could remember this!


I love long weekends!

I worked half a day on Friday and now I'm off work until Tuesday since Monday is MLK Day. I love long weekends! It's so nice to be off work for several days. I am planning on doing some thinking about ways to incorporate more time in my schedule for working out. It looks like the only time I have will be early in the morning from Monday - Thursday. And since I'm not a morning person, this will be a huge challenge! Or if I workout more on the weekends will that be enough?

My husband took me out on a date last night to Puleos Grille. It is one of our favorite places. It didn't start off very good, but ended up being a good night. When we got there we had to wait for a table, which is normal and expected. But I started getting a little upset when others that came in after us got seated before us. After 25 minutes, I proceeded to go back to the hostess stand to investigate. We were seated 30 seconds later. The service was good except we were given the wrong salads at first. I pointed that out of course. I ordered a chef salad with avocado ranch dressing. That is my favorite dressing and I can't find it anywhere else. My entree was a combo platter of lasagna and penne pasta with spinach and alfredo sauce. It was very yummy. This may not sound like a very healthy dinner. But in my defense, I exercised portion control and only ate about half of the entree. I had unsweet tea as my beverage with one pack of Splenda. We stopped on the way home for some wine to enjoy. It was a lovely night.

Today is Saturday and I'm looking forward to my monthly massage today. I bought a spa package to Massage Envy last year around Mother's Day. I have been loving it! It's the one thing I do for myself and after a stressful week at work, it is exactly what I need. Looking forward to relaxation!

Have a wonderful weekend!


Sleep deprived

It's Tuesday and I have been sleepy all day. Last night I went with my husband and daughter to a WWE event. It was a fun night! 
Eating at Joe's Crab Shack before the event

WWE Raw!

Goofing off with Elvis in downtown Nashville!

Another issue was that a winter storm came the night before and we weren't too sure about the condition of the roads. But everything worked out fine. Most of the roads were clear. We got enough snow to close the schools for 3 days so far this week! I took a picture when I woke up Monday morning....

Snowstorm in TN!
It was a lot of fun, but a late night for a week night. I'm usually in bed before 10 and it was well after midnight when I got to sleep. I had to get to work on time and it was a busy day. I was so glad to finally get home and relax. I did what I usually do on Tuesday nights - watch The Biggest Loser! It was a good episode. It is a little different this season, with some of the contestants working out with the "unknown trainers" - but it's keeping it interesting!

Well, it's time to get caught up on my sleep. G'night!


Cardio Max

I woke up to muscle soreness from the Cardio Max DVD I did yesterday. A little soreness is good. I decided to use the stationary bike and exercise ball to try and loosen up. I really like the DVD. I was surprised that several contestants from the last 2 seasons were on it. I didn't realize this one was released recently. I got to workout with Sunshine, Tara, Ada, Ashley and Bob Harper! I think I'm gonna like this one.

I am also logging my workouts on my Biggest Loser calendar I bought last week at 75% off. Thats a sweet deal! The calendar is cool with tips and recipes from Bob and Jillian.

Biggest Loser calendar

After working out, today was a pretty lazy day. I went out to lunch with my husband and daughter to Jason's Deli. I love that place. They have an awesome salad bar with tons of fresh fruits and vegetables to choose from. Here is a picture of my salad plate:

We bought a humidifier today. I'm hoping this will solve the sinus trouble I've been having. Fingers crossed.

I plan on relaxing for the rest of the evening and waiting for the snow to arrive. It's always a big deal when snow is forecasted in Tennessee. People rush off to the grocery store for water, milk and bread - so I avoided those places. They are saying we might get several inches overnight and more tomorrow. I'm a little cynical though, it seems like when they say we are getting snow, it's just a flake or two.

I hope you have a great week! Stick to your resolutions!


Reflecting back

Here is a comparison photo of me in 2009 and 2010. Even though I haven't lost that many pounds, I can see that I have toned up. Definitely like the longer hair, too! Hopefully we'll see more results in 2011!

Christmas 2009

Christmas 2010

Snowy Saturday

Good morning! I woke up to it snowing! What a beautiful sight!

Plans for today include working out, cleaning the house a bit, and spending time with family while watching football. After having my morning espresso, of course. I have finally figured out how to use my machine!

Here are some pictures of my workout room that is still a work in progress.

My motivation wall!
My newest workout DVD purchase

We had a nice relaxing evening last night after I got off work. It had been a stressful work week, and I needed that! After sipping on a glass of wine, we played Green Day Rockband! I love it! I know their songs so well, that I could get 100% on the hard level.

We also got take out for dinner. Since I had been sticking to my healthy eating all week, I decided that I wanted Popeyes fried chicken. That has to be my favorite meal! Even more reason to get up and burn some calories today!


Sticking with it

Are you sticking to your resolutions for 2011? I must admit that after getting sick around New Years, that I have not gotten back into the swing of things for working out. It's really hard for me to fit it in after working 10 hours every day. I need a new plan. I don't have a problem on the weekends, but during the work week it's tough. I found myself trying to find ways to walk more at work. But with an office job, that is not always an option.

I have been sticking to my healthy eating goal, though. I started keeping a food journal again. They say it works. ;)

Here are some of my favorite things I have been munching on this week:
My favorite oatmeal - I usually add organic blueberries too!

Greek Yogurt - yummy

Veggies and spinach dip!

My favorite chocolate milk
I have tried packing lots of healthy options to take to work since I'm there for such a long time. The time of day that I struggle the most is a few hours after lunch, usually around 3:00 p.m. For some reason, I'm almost always famished around this time and I rarely grab something healthy. This is another reason I am starting to log my eating habits again. I want to get to the bottom of this! If I were at home, would I have the same cravings as I do when I'm at work?

My plan is to get back into working out this weekend. I bought a new Biggest Loser DVD and am ready to try it out. Maybe Bob and Jillian can whip me into shape! Speaking of which, did you watch the season premiere this week? I did, of course. It looks like it will be an interesting season. I'm inspired by Courtney - Team Aqua!

- Gina



Happy New Year! 2011 is here. Did you make your resolutions? I made mine a few days ago in the post labeled Goals for 2011.

On New Year's Eve, I decided to try a test run with my espresso machine. Success! I was able to produce a serving of espresso. I will need to purchase a frothing pitcher as one did not come with the machine. And I need some espresso cups. My extra large coffee cups are too large.

Later today, I treated my mom to lunch and a movie. We went to Mimi's Cafe for lunch. I actually had breakfast consisting of pumpkin pancakes with cinnamon apples and scrambled eggs. I also treated myself to a Pimosa - a drink similar to a Mimosa but with a combination of different types of juices.
Pumpkin pancakes!


I ordered coffee after lunch

My mom in front of Mimi's Cafe

We had a lovely time at Mimi's as always. After lunch we went to see "The Tourist" at the movies. We enjoyed Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie's performance. I joked with my sister that I was working on getting the "daughter of the year award" by taking mom out for a fun filled day! She has some catching up to do!