Tag Archives: love

Being Normal Gets Boring, So I Go Back To Being Me: Very Inspiring Blogger Award

TGIF, y’all! Also, Happy 4th of July to my my American friends!

I am so so ecstatic it’s finally Friday! This weekend is going to be extraordinary, but you’ll have to wait till Monday. #sorrynotsorry

Nevertheless, I have something super exciting to share with you. One of my favorite bloggers, Salt *wait… Her name is Lauren! wink wink!*, from Run Salt Run nominated me for a Very Inspiring Blogger Award. I love her blog and have a tremendous respect for her as an athlete and a mommy. I am so so honored that she even thought of me! *Pinky swear!* You should definitely head over to her blog if you still haven’t done so. She is AWESOME! ❤

veryinspiringblogger

 

There are a few rules I have to follow:

  • Thank and link to the person who nominated you.
  • List the rules and display the award.
  • Share seven facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 15 other amazing blogs and comment on their posts to let them know they have been nominated.
  • Optional: display the award logo on your blog and follow the blogger who nominated you.

I came up with 7 FUN facts about me, so you have to promise that you won’t blackmail me with any of these! *I am serious! LOL!* 

1. When my husband asked me to marry him, I never actually said ‘Yes’.

will you marry me

That’s horrible, right?

It may sound strange, but I really had no clue he was going to propose to me that night. I should have known better because Justin even told me to pack a nice dress and a pair of high heels, when we went to Mont Tremblant for 2 days.

You’ll say it was evident. But listen to this, when we were having supper at this super fancy restaurant, he started asking me about how I would like him to propose to me, whether I’d want to ask my dad first, etc. Obviously, any suspicions that I may have had evaporated. So when Justin stood on his knee, it took me by surprise! I got all emotional and I pretty much forgot to answer the most important question of my life.

Fun fact: I am pretty sure that our waiter thought we broke up. Little does he know! *Haha!*

2. When I am scared something weird happens to my face…

Zip-lining

and body…

Jumping over the fire

First picture

It was the first ever time I went zip-lining. I am not scared of heights or anything, but what got me super worried is the wooden block that is supposed to make you stop. I was going so fast that I had no idea how hard I would hit it… It wasn’t that bad after all. *LOL!*

Second picture

This shot was taken this past weekend. I had it all planned out in my head and was supposed to jump over the fire holding hands with Justin, but it didn’t happen. I made sure to jump up high, smile and look all pretty. It seems that the camera man had another plan for me… He decided to take a shot at the moment I was landing and when my face was in the process of registering the heat from fire. Lesson learned: Keep smiling for 2 seconds after you jump over the fire no matter what it takes.

*PS. It’s okay to laugh at my unfortunate photographs… Go on! Don’t feel bad! LOL!* 

3. I almost destroyed someone’s house is Antigua.

ATV tour

On our honeymoon, we decided to go on ATV tour around the island. Two other couples joined in. From what I overheard, it wasn’t their first time driving ATVs. I got all courage I had and pretended to be a big girl who could do it too. Well… It didn’t last long… Not even a minute into it, my ATV swerved and I almost  hit somebody’s house. I am pretty sure that one of the walls would be gone if I indeed hit it!..

Or was it an excuse to hold on to my hubby for the next 3 hours? Hmmm… I guess, you’ll never know. *Wink, wink!*

4. I believe that Monopoly is EVIL.

funny-family-happy-Monopoly-angry

Once during holidays I was naive enough to agree to play Monopoly with Justin’s brother and sister… BIG MISTAKE! I will never play this game again! I swear… You see that girl crying in the corner? It was ME! And that little happy punk was Justin’s little sister who was 13 or 14 at the time… Yes, I was angry with a kid!!! And no, I don’t feel bad, she deserved it! * Love you, sissy!!! Haha!*

5. I was so scared/nervous to introduce my parents to Justin’s parents that I ran away and let them figure it out on their own!

graduation

Justin and I went to the same university (I majored in Finance & Justin – in Accounting), so our convocation took place on the same day; however, his ceremony was in the morning and mine – in the afternoon.

At that point of time, we’d been together for almost 2 years and had established great relationships with each other’s families. Justin’s parents wanted to stay to see me get my diploma too. It doesn’t take much to figure out, our families were bound to meet, which both of us were ready for. Well… kind of! Certainly, my nerves weren’t prepared for that…

What did I do? That’s how it went down: “Hi, mommy and daddy! You look great! Here is Justin with his parents and sister… These are my parents! Oh, so sorry! I already have to go to get ready for the ceremony. See you later! Have fun!!!”

Yup… I’m THAT bad! *Now judge me!*

6. I jumped out of a Jacuzzi and rolled in the snow on 3 different occasions just because someone said I wouldn’t do it.

Rolling in the snow

I was sober and cold. Why would I do this three times? Because whoever was taking pictures couldn’t get a decent shot. It was totally worth it though! Call me a daredevil! *Haha!* 

7. I make weird faces when I am bored. 

Bored

But don’t we all?!

Here are my nominations *who weren’t yet nominated by somebody else*:

  1. Stamped With a Heart
  2. Run For The Pizza
  3. Abs of Steel
  4. Must Love Jogs
  5. Fueled by LOLz
  6. Running on Healthy
  7. Northern Ambitions
  8. Liveng Proof
  9. Daydreams & Shoestrings
  10. The Gluten-Free Treadmill
  11. Fairytales & Fitness
  12. Life Between the Miles
  13. Runaway Bridal Planner
  14. Mar On the Run
  15. NY Life Supply

have a great day

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Here are some of my previous nominations:

Anyone else forgot to say ‘Yes’ to man of your dreams? Any horror Monopoly stories? Bad race shots? Spill it out! Haha!

xoxo
Olena

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Fun Saint Valentine’s Day Facts, Mini Cheesecakes & 90 Partner Body Weight Exercises In 9 Minutes

Happy Valentine’s Day my lovelies!

Valentine's Day

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Here are some interesting facts about this holiday for you to start off this day of the right foot. Haha!

Valentine's facts

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I am not sure if these facts are true, but they are certainly fun! What do you think?!

You probably won’t be surprised, but I was really inspired to make a cheesy *literally* dessert to sweeten up the day of love. My choice fell on the mini cheesecakes! Mostly because they are very easy and quick to prepare, and they do not require to be cooled overnight. Which means that you can still make them for your loved one *or yourself! Why not?!?!* 

Mini Valentine's Cheesecakes ingredients

Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 2/3 Oreo baking crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Filling:

  • 2 (8 ounce) package Philadelphia cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 natural vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs

Mini Valentine's Cheesecakes 1

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease 12-cup muffin pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together Oreo baking crumbs, sugar, and butter with a fork until combined. Measure a rounded tablespoon of the mixture into the bottom of each muffin cup, pressing firmly. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 5 minutes, then remove to cool. Keep the oven on.
  3. Beat together the cream cheese,sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla until fluffy. Mix in the eggs.
  4. Poor the cream cheese mixture into the muffin cups, filling each until 3/4 full. Bake at 325 degrees F for 25 minutes. Cool completely in pan before removing. Refrigerate until ready to serve and decorate.

Mini Valentine's Cheesecakes 2

Voila! Enjoy!

Workout Ideas for today

Why not take advantage of the holiday and workout with your partner? How about these 90 Partner Body Weight Exercises in 9 minutes?

Let’s spread some love!

What is your favorite Valentine’s Day desert? Do you ever incorporate partner body weight workouts in your routine? How?

xoxo
Olena

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Filed under Fitness, Health, Holidays, Kitchen Adventures

What Exactly A Tempo Run Is & Liebster Award

Being fairly new to running, I’ve heard quite a few times the term ‘tempo run’. I must admit though, I never really knew what it meant. And it seems like it’s a good thing that I decided to look it up because apparently there is lots of confusion and misunderstanding among runners.

Just collapse right there

I found two really awesome articles (here and here) on Runner’s World to clarify it for myself. Here are the main points:

  • A tempo run is 20 minutes of steady running at threshold pace.
  • “Threshold pace is the effort level just below which the body’s ability to clear lactate, a by-product of carbohydrate metabolism, can no longer keep up with lactate production…[which is] for most people, about 25 to 30 seconds per mile slower than current 5K race pace”.
  • The most important aspect of a tempo run is to maintain a specific and consistent pace.

My workout for today: 

Warm up 2 miles with heart rate in zone 2. Run 2 miles with a heart rate in zone 4. Cool down 2 miles with heart rate in zone 4.

you have enough time

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Guess what?

DRUM ROLL!

One of my favorite fellow bloggers Jenna from Little Green Running Shoes has nominated me for a Liebester Award! WOOP WOOP! I am very flattered and honored. Jenna is super adorable and has many sides to her. Not only does she have a great blog, she is also an AFAA certified Personal Trainer and Group Ex Instructor. You should definitely check her out!

liebster

So what exactly is the Liebster Award?

It helps to generate attention for new and upcoming bloggers, generally those with 200 followers or less.  As with other awards, there are rules:

  • Acknowledge the nominating blogger
  • Answer 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you
  • 11 random facts about yourself
  • List some bloggers with fewer than 200 followers that you really feel deserve a little blogging love!
  • Let all of the bloggers know you have nominated them. You cannot nominate the blogger that nominated you!
  • Post 11 questions for the bloggers you have nominated to answer

Here are my answers to Jenna’s questions:

1. What’s your favorite ice cream? Hmmmmm… Let’s see… French Vanilla… Cookies & Cream… With chunks of strawberry cheese cake… And all types of gelato! I mean, what kind of question it is? Like, seriously?! Haha! I LOVE any ice-cream! A few years back I could finish the entire box of it within a day! I know, it’s bad, but then who cares! *Thank God, I’ve smartened up and now eat it over 1.5 days! JUST KIDDING!*

ice cream addict

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2. What’s your favorite outfit? Again? I mean, I am a girl! How am I supposed to  know what my favorite outfit is?! How many times did you start getting ready to go somewhere and then changed your outfit at least 3 times?! Alright, let’s narrow it down. I like comfortable… but then I like sexy too, which could be not so comfortable at times. Go figure!

what to wear

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3. What’s your pet peeve? Finally a question that I could answer! I can’t stand when people chew gum with their mouth open. I swear, I stare those people down. And this is quite frightening. As my hubby says, if looks could kill… Haha! By the way, that’s how I really feel:

stop chewing with your mouth open

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4. Who do you admire most? Hey, that’s a tricky question! Are you trying to get me in trouble? I admire my hubby, my family, my family-in-law, my friends, my co-workers, everyone! Ha! In all seriousness, however, I admire people with a strong will who don’t give up on their dreams despite whatever life throws at them. I admire people who love and continue to learn and grow. I admire people who are adventurous and live their lives to the fullest!

5. Pirates or Ninjas? Why? Hmmmm… I’ll have to go for pirates! I mean, who can resist Johnny Depp?!?!?! However, on the second thought, if they come up with a good looking ninja, I might rethink it. *Baby, I love you! Don’t let this get between us! LOL!*

Johnny Depp

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6. What was your favorite cartoon growing up? Hands down, Chip and Dale Rescure Rangers! How can’t you love “CHEEEEEEEESE!”?

7. If you owned a cow what would you name it? Oh, wow! Let me think… How about Cinnamon or Buttercup? Sounds great to me!

8. Do you eat enough veggies? I eat PLENTY of vegetables. Actually, I don’t think I can function without them, I literally don’t feel healthy when I don’t eat enough. *Oh, those we’ve-got-to-go-to-Costco-like-now days*

9. Who is your favorite super hero? Why? Well, my favorite character would probably be Catwoman. I know, not exactly a super hero, more like an opposite. I’m not even sure why I like her; maybe because of her confidence and her ability to get everything she wants.

catwoman

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10. What have you learned today? Today I learnt that it’s okay to listen to what my body is telling me. I had a 10 km run planned, but then was able to run only 5 km. At first I was upset; however, later I came to a realization that it’s still better than nothing!

Imma be okay

11. What scares you? There are a lot of things that scare me, but my biggest scare is to lose my loved ones which is followed by a fear of labor. Long story short, since the very moment when I found out how babies are born, I was hoping that by the time I have my kids that someone would come up with some sort of solution that you would fall asleep and when you wake up the baby is already there. Well, they didn’t! Haha!

labourSource

11 random facts about myself:

  1. Bruce Willis is my childhood crush. ❤
  2. I earned the rank of Candidate for Master of Sports in rhythmic gymnastics when I was 15.
  3. I love reading.
  4. I was caught on a candid camera show in Montreal.
  5. Last year an 18 year old was trying to flirt with me because he thought I was 16. Little that he knew I was 26 and engaged to top it off. * A great pick up FAIL!!! Haha!*
  6. I’m addicted to having a yogurt in the morning.
  7. I love drinking my tea with milk.
  8. Once I was reading on my lunch break at a park and a bird pooped on my book. I wasn’t sure if I should be upset because I’d got bird poop on my book or happy because it didn’t land on my hair. My co-workers told me to go and buy a lottery ticket. It was the very first time I won something.
  9. I speak fluently 4 languages.
  10. I secretly hope to have twins when my time comes, so that I don’t have to go through labour twice.
  11. I’m clueless when it comes to styling my hair.

I read a lot of really great blogs, but since I can name only 11, here are my nominations:

Cait @ Perpetual Plot Hole
Laura @ This Is Thirty
Emmeline @ Run For The Pizza
Ursula @ Northern Ambitions
Sarah @ Running On Healthy
Jason @ Must Love Jogs
Meredith @ Peachy Clean
Khrysty @ Running In Her Heels
Engrid @ Liveng Proof
Cee @ Cee Food Differently
Alexandra & Katrin @ Sugar & Hairspray

Now, here are my questions for the nominees:

  1. What are the fondest memories from your childhood?
  2. If you could go back and visit any time period, what time would you travel to and why?
  3. Name a gift you will never forget?
  4. What is one thing you really like about yourself?
  5. What is the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten?
  6. What is one of the things you would put on your Bucket list?
  7. Where is the worst place you could get stuck?
  8. What is your biggest addiction?
  9. When I dance, I look like…?
  10. What is your life motto?
  11. If you were famous what would you be famous for?

Please take the time to visit these FANTABULOUS blogs and spread some love! My friends above, CONGRATULATIONS, I cannot wait to see all of your answers.  Enjoy!!

xoxo
Olena

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Three, Two, One, Go! The Spartan Race Training Begins! Also, How Crazy Can Valentine’s Day Get?

So my first ever Super Spartan race is officially 17 weeks away… I can’t tell you enough how excited and nervous I am! As some of you may already know, I started running only in summer 2013. No wonder, I am worried about successfully completing *meaning, finishing with the mid of the pack* an 8+ mile mud race with up to 20 obstacles! I mean, who wouldn’t? Haha!

And I can’t believe it’s already the end of January! Wasn’t New Years just yesterday?! THE TIME IS FLYING! And this means that I have to really refocus and start training seriously and smart. Seriously because I want to enjoy the race and perform well, and smart because I want to avoid injuries and concentrate on the game plan that will prepare me for the race in the best way possible!

Train Smart

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According to You’ll Know at the Finish Line: A Spartan Guide to the Sport of Obstacle Training by Joe Besena and Andy Weinberg, ‘Anyone training to finish a Super should be able to run up to ten miles comfortably and should mix in strength training a few days per week.’

There are a few things that I should be focusing on:

  • Endurance: LSD (Long Slow Distance) training;
  • Running Downhill: Since running downhill requires ‘braking’, it causes the muscles to contract which in turn leads to muscle damage. Running downhill on a regular basis makes muscles ‘accustomed’ to eccentric contractions and, therefore, more resistant to injury;
  • Building Strength: Body-weight circuits & lifting;
  • Learning to Stay Hydrated: It may seem like a natural thing; however, BELIEVE YOU ME, I am really not good at it and will need to experiment with different hydrating and fueling strategies.

Staying hydrated funny

I decided to use a 12-week Super Spartan training guide to get ready. I will try to follow it as closely as possible; however, because I have extra 5 weeks, I will be adjusting it to my fitness level as I see fit.

Today the program asks for the following:

45-minute trail run; every 10 minutes find a rock or a log and lift it for 10 reps, performing arm curls, shoulder presses, and squats. Add 5 reps each time so that you finish your last set with 25 reps for each exercise. 

if it excites you

In my case, I will have to use a treadmill *I am not quite ready to run in freezing temperatures yet, DUH!* and will most likely use some sort of weights *You weren’t seriously thinking I would bring a log or a big rock to the gym, right?! Oh, c’mon guys! Gimme a break! Haha!*

Anywhoooo! This is the plan!

On a lighter note though, I’ve got a cool Infographic for you. Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and I wanted to get the conversation going!

Valentine's Day Infographics

Source (unknown): Pinterest

I mean, REALLY?!?! Sending yourself flowers?! I don’t know, maybe a friends’ mutual ‘flower sending exchange’ would work & feel better?!

Now it’s your turn! Have you ever trained for an obstacle race? Do you have any tips that you think would help me in my journey? Also what are your biggest and best ‘WHAT THE HELL?!?!?!’ Valentine’s day moments? Let’s start this week off with a nice giggle!

xoxo
Olena

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What Is Your Marriage Expiration Date?

How would you feel if your marriage or relationship had an expiration date?

YES, I’m super happy with my husband. And, NO, I didn’t hit my head this morning. In fact, last weekend we celebrated our 3-monthaversary of our wedding and we are looking forward to spending the rest of our lives together!

Feeling a bit lost? Don’t worry, I would be too! Let me put things in perspective for you.

The day of our wedding was, without a doubt, the happiest day of our lives! Even though, both of us were super nervous in the morning, waiting impatiently to see each other at the church, I wouldn’t change a thing!

This is me getting ready and about to faint from all excitement, nerves, lack of sleep, you name it!

the morning of

Here is my man, trying to look all confident and faking that ‘I can do it, no big deal’ look, but *we all know* freaking out deep inside.

Happy Justin

This is the moment of truth with nowhere to run.

the moment of truth

Here is us, officially married, super excited for what the future holds for us and ready to celebrate!

Finally married

And, finally, this is us dancing the night away!

dancing the night away

So where did it all go wrong??? What if I told you that it happened here!

making it happen

Haha! Are you even more confused than ever? Don’t worry, even we weren’t aware of what was about to happen! Actually, it took us quite a while to even realize that we had an ‘expiration date’!

So how in the world did we get it???

You see, both of our rings have our names and the wedding date engraved on them…

our wedding bands

About 2 months after the wedding, I was showing my dad our wedding pictures, including the one above. He was really surprised because, with all pre-wedding craziness, I forgot to tell him about this little detail. Obviously, like any great dad, he wanted to take a closer look at my wedding band. And then, it happened! I realized that the date was written wrong: 31.8.31 instead of 31.8.13!!! Can you imagine my shock?! I’m not sure if I even slept well that night!

oh no they got my wedding date wrong

That’s when some of my friends started joking around about the expiration date. Clearly, we went to see a jeweler to fix the error, and guess what? We got a NEW ‘expiration’ date instead: 13.8.31! Haha! Anyhow, I strongly believe that the third time is a charm (right?!?!) and I should have the correct wedding date on my band anytime this week! How crazy is that?!

I mostly laughed about it, but, I have to admit, this little inconvenience got me thinking. The truth is we never know how much time we have left with each other on this Earth. Therefore, we should always cherish our moments together, love each other more, and live our lives to the fullest without any excuses, because any day could be our last. I believe in working on relationships and not in giving up when things get tougher, because as we said at the alter “For better or for worse”!

Now let me ask you. Has anything crazy happened to you on your wedding day? How did you go about it?

xoxo
Olena

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