Mal Smiles

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

My Half Marathon Calendar

Remember when I told you I had the half marathon itch? And then I announced that I'm a ZOOMA Colorado Ambassador?

I've continued to be bit by the half marathon bug and I've signed up for two more. I will be running three half marathons in five months, two of them on back-to-back weekends.

October 18th, 2015: Rock 'n' Roll Denver Half Marathon
Denver, CO
I wasn't going to run this race because it's a) DLW's birthday weekend and b) the weekend before ZOOMA. However, I couldn't resist a promo code that was getting passed around my running group that made the race just $64 including all fees. I can't resist a good sale. This will be my second RnR race (I ran RnR Virginia Beach in 2013) and I know it will be well organized and a great experience.

October 24th, 2015: ZOOMA Colorado Half Marathon
Colorado Springs, CO
I am really thrilled to be an Ambassador for ZOOMA. They work to create women's races across the country that serve as a fitness girl's getaway. I am getting to know the other Ambassadors via our Facebook group and look forward to meeting them this fall. This race is here in Colorado Springs at The Broadmoor which is the fanciest hotel I've ever seen. Not only am I excited to run this race but I'm am anxious to check out the hotel. My promo code MALLORY15 is still good for 10% off the 10K or the half marathon. Run with me! I'm going to need the extra encouragement because this race is less than a week after RnR Denver.

February 21st, 2016: Disney Princess Half Marathon
Orlando, FL
This race has been on my Fitness Bucket List since I started running. I'm not much for tutus and tiaras but there is something magical about the idea of running through Disney World. I considered putting it off until we live back East but knew if I didn't register this year, there will always be another excuse why I can't run. This race sells out in just one day so I jumped on the opportunity to register. With my parents living just over an hour away, this race is the perfect excuse to plan a February visit to FL. We won't be hanging around to go to the parks but will enjoy a nice little overnight trip to Orlando. I have my eye on this race as a new PR; I want to break 2 hours SO BAD.

Half marathon training for October starts next month! I am hoping to mix a few 5K and 10K races into my training plan, too. I am excited to be excited about running again. All it took for a few good races and friends to re-motivate my love for running.

  • Are you registered for any half marathons?
  • What is on your fitness bucket list?

Monday, July 27, 2015

I Bought a Dog Bed for the Baby

When you first become a mom you're obsessed with name brands and product reviews. Then a year later you're buying a dog bed at TJMaxx to use as a pack 'n play mattress...

We will be traveling with Collie's pack 'n play next week and that thing is uncomfortable. The last time we tried to have her sleep in it she woke up every hour slamming her feet on the hard "mattress." I would actually like to sleep on this vacation so I started looking into other options. I considered buying foam from Jo Ann Fabrics but then discovered dog crates and pack 'n plays are the same size- coincidence?

TJMaxx has tons of dog beds for cheap. I wish you all could have seen me measuring them and laying Collie on them to see if she fit. I'm sure I'm on someone's Snapchat somewhere.
This dog bed fits perfectly in her Eddie Bauer pack 'n play; our specific pack 'n play has a 35"x24" mattress so I looked for a dog bed with similar measurements. I think this specific dog bed was 36"x 22" but fits nicely. It is soft without being too soft that it's unsafe. She loves it and it's a great safe place to put her if I need to leave the room. It will be perfectly cozy with her mattress pad and sheets on top when we travel.
Lately I have been trying to find baby gadgets and toys secondhand before buying anything brand new. I snagged this Leap Frog play table for $5 on the VarageSale app (thanks for tagging me, Erica). I love using Facebook moms groups and that app to find great deals; so far I have bought a doorway jumper for just $10, two baby gates for $20, and this table.
My little book worm is still loving Are You a Cow? by Sandra Boynton. Something about this book can pull her out of a meltdown. She also enjoys chewing on it...
Collie and I have been spending time in the garage taking car naps. Her, not me. I have started keeping a book or magazine with me so I have something to do while she sleeps. I'd rather waste gas idling in the garage (with the door open) than wake her up.
Is there anything cuter than a daddy and his little girl? No, there is not.
We are soaking up these last few weeks of warm weather and freedom before DLW is back at work/school full time. We leave for NC/VA in a little over a week and I can't wait!

  • Do you buy anything secondhand?

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Safe Sleep From The Start

Remember when she was this little? Yeah, me neither.
However, I do remember how much we loved our HALO SleepSack Swaddle. I never learned to swaddle. Probably because I refused to practice on the creepy baby at baby class. I tried a couple times at the hospital but would have loved to have my HALO SleepSack Swaddler with me (add that to the packing list for next time). Our crazy girl preferred her arms out but we used our Swaddler at home to keep her warm and safe at night.
HALO is excited to announce that their HALO SleepSack Swaddles are now used in 1,400 hospitals nationwide. Though HALO's Safer Way to Sleep In-Hospital Program, hospitals and NICUs across the country are able to replace their nursery blankets with SleepSack Swaddles, increasing parents education about infant sleep practices right from the start. How nice would it be to have a SleepSack Swaddler from night one and not have to mess with the hospital blanket and worry your brand new baby was going to suffocate?

Today and tomorrow, HALO is running a "Safe Sleep from the Start" campaign on Facebook to give away a free HALO Bassinest and HALO SleepSack Swaddle to one lucky winner. You can enter the contest on Facebook and submit a photo of your baby using a SleepSack of Swaddler using #HALOfromthestart.

Collins is nearly 11 months old but I still think about safe sleep practices every time I put her down for a nap or the night. She sleeps in a SleepSack every night and never uses a blanket in her crib. Here are a few safe sleep tips from HALO for all you mamas:

  • Place baby to sleep on his or her back at naptime and at night time.
  • Use a crib that meets current safety standards with a firm mattress that fits snugly and is covered with only a tight-fitting crib sheet.
  • Remove all soft bedding and toys from your baby’s sleep area (this includes loose blankets, bumpers, pillows and positioners). The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests using a wearable blanket instead of loose blankets to keep your baby warm.
  • Offer a pacifier when putting baby to sleep. If breastfeeding, introduce pacifier after one month or after breastfeeding has been established.
  • Breastfeed, if possible, but when finished, put your baby back to sleep in his or her separate safe sleep area alongside your bed.
  • Room share, but don’t bed share. Bed sharing can put a child at risk of suffocation.
  • Never put your baby to sleep on any soft surface (adult beds, sofas, chairs, water beds, quilts, sheep skins etc.)
  • Never dress your baby too warmly for sleep; keep room temperature 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Never allow anyone to smoke around your baby or take your baby into a room or car where someone has recently smoked.
I hear my little sleeper waking up now so have a great day and don't forget to enter the giveaway and follow HALO on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Friday, July 24, 2015

The Struggle Is Real and I'm Struggling Too

This post has taken a different direction since I started typing it this morning but I feel like it's something I've wanted to say for awhile but never have. Weight and body issues can be hard to talk about but are something I think most of us struggle with in some way. I've been fighting a battle with my weight for years and will probably for the rest of my life. I don't write posts like this to have you all boost my ego (although I do love compliments), I am sharing my story because the struggle is real and sometimes it helps to know someone else is struggling, too.

I've gained 8-10lbs in the less than two weeks that DLW has been home. I'd like to say I was surprised when I got on the scale but I really wasn't. My eating has been awful since ending the sugar detox. Worse than ever actually. It's like a week of going without sugar made me crazy when it ended. The sugar detox definitely put me in a worse place than I was when I started.

Prior to the detox I was finally at peace with my body and holding steady at my "happy" weight or just below. I had a healthy balance of good and "bad" foods and felt pretty darn good about myself. Now that I've seen the scale dip so low, I am not happy with my previous "happy" weight. I feel less body confident than ever and dread getting dressed everyday so I just wear gym clothes.

Every damn day is a battle with my weight and making healthy choices. I have times when I feel out of control around junk; when I know shouldn't have another handful of cookies/candy/junk but my legs are moving me towards the pantry and in my mouth it goes. Have you ever eaten an entire bag of candy corn in one sitting? I have and let me tell you, it is not pretty. Episodes like that happened more frequently before I got pregnant but those binge-y, out of control feelings have started to come back recently and I need to regain control.

To get back in control, it's important to know your body and know what sets you off. For me, challenges to give up foods or lose weight within a certain amount of time make me a crazy person (just ask DLW). Actively trying to lose weight in a specific amount of time brings on food guilt and makes me obsessed with the numbers. Eventually I can't handle any more restricting or calorie counting and go off the deep end. My trigger food tend to be parties snacks, baking, and chips at a Mexican restaurant. After a night of binge eating crap comes the guilt, tears, and a pep talk from DLW.

We ate Mexican last night and I ate until my stomach hurt. I hated myself for it and couldn't sleep because I was thinking about what I ate. I knew the scale wouldn't be kind this morning and it wasn't. I knew I would be upset and I was. I knew I would feel bad about myself and I did. So I wrote this, cried a little, and it helped. DLW told me he loves me to matter what I weigh and that helped too.

This morning has been difficult. I haven't felt like this about my body and weight since I got pregnant (it happened far too often before). I know I shouldn't be so hard on myself but processing my challenges and missteps is a big part of getting back on track for me. If I pretend that eating a bucket of Trader Joe's cookies didn't happen then it will only happen again. I need to acknowledge when I'm feeling out of control and where I want to make a change. I need to feel like this now to know I don't want to feel like this again.

So what do I do now? My first reaction is to not eat much today but I know that isn't how our bodies work. Each meal is an opportunity to make a choice and to be in control of what goes in my body. Sometimes it is HARD to make the healthy choice but each time I do, it gets a little easier. I know if I commit to a few days of healthy eating, it won't be as difficult to stay on track. I will start to feel better about myself and my will start to reflect my choices and encourage me to keep going. I've been here before and I can climb out of this place again.

So there it is- my struggle with food. Not something I've shared fully before but something I wanted to share because I can't be the only person who feels like this sometimes. That's what blogging is about, right? When I felt like this a couple years ago, reading this post from Lee at Fit Foodie Finds helped me make sense of it all.

I have to say I feel much better tackling today after writing this post and processing what is going on in my head these days. So thanks. I needed this. Have a great weekend and make a healthy choice or two for me.
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