*Insert James Franco Reference Here*

…because it’s “spraaang breeeeaaaaakkkkk!

Thankfully, my spring break will include none of the horror that movie did (seriously, it was the weirdest, most uncomfortable and messed up thing I saw all last summer). And finally, literally within the last hour, all of my midterms are submitted, and I can go into full on spring break mode!

No sunny, beach trips for me, though this vacation. My break will be a full one, spent babysitting, working, having out with my #1 soul sister, and heading home for a few days. I’ve had these past 2 days to be a sloth on my couch, and that’s plenty of laziness for my liking.

This week was pure insanity for me, from classes to midterms to my second ever all-nighter to my first ever conference call to club stuff to work, and my sleep pattern got super thrown off. It is with great sadness that I admit I am back on the coffee IV. My all-nighter was surprisingly fun, spent with 5 of my friends from work, where we occupied one of the hallways in the lower level of our library (open 24/7 down there). At one point, there was yoga. Downward Dog made an appearance in that hallway around 2 a.m.

Earlier that day, though, I had to embrace the incredible weather NYC was having. The climate has been more temperamental than *this girl* gets about 1/month, so the 55 degree, sunny weather was not to be passed up. I went on a glorious run over to the East River and for the first time since October, I rocked a T-SHIRT! My arms couldn’t have been happier. I also listened to Pandora during my run, which is the first time I’ve listened to anything running since October. It was a wonderful addition. I do love the peace and mental clarity that comes with running free of music/podcasts/distractions too, but there’s something lovely about that upbeat soundtrack cheering you along. (I switched between Jason Mraz radio, Eric Hutchinson radio, and Noah and the Whale radio). Since I was already full of firsts, I decided to hop onto the track I always pass by. Another great experience! I haven’t run on a large track like that since high school (the rooftop one on my gym is 1/7 mile and a completely different experience). It was so nice to stretch and do some ab work after my 3.5 on the grass soaking up some vitamin d.

But the real victory was yesterday. Another beautiful day, another t-shirt weather kind of run. After my weekly visit to my therapist (you gotta do it! so amazing!), I headed out on a jaunt over to my favorite running spot, the Hudson River. I took my music with me and scored big time with the Eric Hutchinson station. I decided to stick to a similar schedule as my half-marathon training, except without any sort of purpose. Basically, 2-3 5k-ish runs during the week and a long run on the weekend. I figured I’d go about 6 yesterday. But I felt so wonderful during that run, had so much positive energy coming from all around – the other runners at the park, the adorable puppies, cute babies (and their hot dads)(judge me), and coming from myself – that I didn’t turn around until mile 4. At mile 6.5, I knew I wanted to make it 8 miles because I was still feeling so great.

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Looking at this as I drained my legs against a light post just truly blew me away. Not because 8 miles was a triumph. But because of the fact that it no longer was a triumph. Exactly a year ago today, I decided I was going to run a half marathon. (Inspired by meeting a girl who had just finished the NYC Half.) At that time, running 5k was my ultimate limit. I can remember being terrified the first time I had my 5 mile long run. The week my long run was 8 miles, I barely got myself out the door. I remember, I planned out the route and did it at Central Park. After I finished that day, I felt such an overwhelming pride for having done something I’d never done before – 8 miles! And I was more sore/hungrier than ever. My stats for that run:

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A year later, and I ran 8 miles just because it was sunny out and because I *can*.

Boy, the things you can accomplish. The things that seem impossible right now can become something you mention in passing because it is so natural. Growing up, I was never a runner. And now, I can run 8 miles because I feel like it.

How freaking victorious is that?!

Now I have to remind myself that it’s ok to go for a 2.5 mile run. Not everything has to be groundbreaking.

On another, more tasty note, I celebrated PiDay! With caramel apple mini pies. I’ve still got one to go 😉

And I’ve decided to spare my instagram followers my obsession with food photographs, and have made a profile dedicated to my noms. And probably fitnessy stuff too!

Follow me @thevegesaurusrex 🙂

Look forward to some imminent insta’s of tasty vegan treats since it’s my friend’s vegan-versary on Wednesday! #CELEBRATEGOODTIMESCOMEON

love, lettuce, and legumes,

cait

In the kitchen, the studio, the classroom, and the street

It’s been one of those weeks where I look at my Google Calendar, and it’s a beautiful tetris board of color block. Long days, not so long nights of sleep. Finally, on Thursday night (after watching Parks and Rec, of course) I have some moments of quiet to reflect on my past week!

Last weekend was a vegan’s DREAM. The 4th Annual New York Vegetarian Food Festival! I volunteered Saturday and Sunday this year (up from just one shift last year, moving up in the ranks!), which meant helping out, meeting hundreds (if not thousands) of open minded New Yorkers- whether vegetarian, vegan, or just hungry! And it also meant access to incredible new, innovative, and delicious vegan products. I tried a range of Vega products, an unREAL vegan empanada from VSpot in Brooklyn, magical cacao mint raw ice cream from Raw Ice Cream Company, got the cutest canvas bag from Herbivore Clothing (maybe I’ll post a pic in the future), and arguably the most influential purchase I have ever made in my entire life……

A VITAMIX!

My relationship with the idea of a Vitamix has been a long one, asking for one at literallly every gift-giving occasion since I was 16. The deal was so good last weekend, and I decided to take my (culinary) life into my own hands and buy that cherry red beauty. It even came with a free extra grain container. I’ve made a ton of delicious green and fruity smoothies, and am already crafting my nut butter and nut milk adventure that is imminent this weekend. Maybe even some sorbet tonight? It’s life changing! Over the course of the week, I’ve been able to reveal my most beautiful friendships: the friends who instantly get excited when I tell them about my blender purchase. That’s love, right there.

 

As I mentioned before, my GCal has been a total rockstar this week, and my freetime has been minimal. Between classes, doing readings for those classes, work, babysitting, my environmental club, a new campaign I’m working with on campus, and having time for friends, there is very little wiggle room! But my time at NYU has taught me something. Exercise has to be a priority too; getting my blood flowing deserves its own color block on my calendar. So I’ve been doing that! Mostly yoga and gym visits, with a few runs thrown in there. I feel as though my yoga practice has surmounted a new hill. Suddenly, one class I’m breathing heavy and spicy in chair pose, and the next practice, it’s an old friend more than a challenge. A light clicked. Now, I can explore harder variations of asanas that I haven’t before and it’s like starting anew again. Very exciting.

And getting back to street running has been like another new awakening. It’s like as soon as I’m on the pavement, memories of running last spring resurface, and suddenly I’m in the state of mind of spring time, beautiful weather, excitement for what’s to come, and just pure bliss. It helps that I have some sweet new Nike Free 5.0+ kicks out there with me. 

This week also marks the beginning of Lent, a time where, as a Christian, I have always contemplated what to “give up”, or commit myself to, to honor and respect the 40 days and nights Jesus spent in the desert without. Much like resolutions, I’ve never really found anything I could stick with to the point of enlightenment (that thing I, and many of us, am always looking for.) But as the weather is slowly but surely improving, and I’ve been reminded how much I love running and feeling triumphant, I’ve decided that instead of sacrificing this Lent, I will commit. To running every day for 40 days. Nothing crazy, not 40 half marathons. A minimum of 1 mile per day. That’s it. Some days will be longer, sure. I just want to commit to getting myself out the door every day, to remind myself just how incredibly blessed I am to have been given the body and life that I have.

 

So, let’s go for a run!

 

On tomorrow’s docket: my first ever Pure Barre class!!! I have been wanting to do this since my bff/brain twin started raving about the classes last summer. Finally, my friend and I will be getting our barre on bright and early tomorrow morning. I’ll report back with updates of muscle jello and, I’m sure pure jubilation.

 

Stay tuned for vitamix magic, muscular jello, and lots and lots of lovin.

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xo

cmoney