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Posts Tagged ‘running’

Looking good and being practical

20 Aug

{ personal: }

When I first started running about 10 years ago, the only real gear I owned were proper running shoes. I asked for them for my birthday. At least I had my priorities straight. But seriously people, heavyweight track pants? Long-sleeve cotton t-shirts? It’s no wonder I overheated regularly, though I’m sure having old ladies pass me up had nothing to do with it.

Thankfully, things have changed a lot. Old ladies no longer pass me up and I’ve upgraded my wardrobe to reflect my evolving athletic needs, comfort and style. Yes, style! Just because I’m going to get my blood pumping doesn’t mean I’ve resigned myself to oversized baggy t-shirts and frumpy shorts. Not only does it not look good at all, it’s not practical.

I need my clothes to breathe well and move with me. Call me demanding but I don’t want seams to chafe, I want small discreet pockets for the most necessary items, I want to be able to wash these garments hundreds of time without showing signs of wear and tear. Oh, right, and I want all this to look fabulous. Enter Lululemon. We go back a couple years, I’m still running in the first pants I bought. Both pairs look practically new. You just can’t argue with quality and comfort.

lululemon purple shirt, black marathon running skirt

I recently completed the SF Marathon, it was my first full. I’ll admit it was not my best run, I got a stress fracture and IT band injury in my right knee at mile 12. With sheer determination, and perhaps a tiny dose of poor judgment, I hobbled my way to the finish line anyway. I’m proud to have completed it, injury and time notwithstanding. Thankfully, my outfit didn’t give up on me, either.

The running skirt with built-in shorts was perfectly cute. The shorts stayed put, never riding up or down. I thought there might be a chance of getting chaffed on the inner thighs, it was never a problem. The waistband held and didn’t shift, the pockets on the outer thighs of the shorts held a couple gels so nicely that I almost forgot about them. The shirt breathed more easily than I did at times and the headband stayed put.

I can’t wait for my knee to heal so I can run again. In that cute skirt, of course.

xo, f

 

{ deets: }

Purple shirt, black 7-pocket running skirt, headband/Lululemon.

 
 

Favorite shoes

03 Mar

{ personal: }

Trail running shoes Saucony

These are my favorite shoes. Let’s define what makes a shoe a favorite. My personal criteria is as follows: They should make me feel confident, strong and sexy. They should be comfortable. I want to feel like a badass wearing them. Bonus points for style and unique qualities. Alright then, no bonus points on this round but if I was tasked with having to save the world, I’d grab these as I ran out the door. They practically possess magical qualities.

They are my trail running shoes. No real style or personality to them. I wish they looked cooler, really. They’re not particularly attractive or memorable. In fact, I couldn’t remember the brand the first few times I wore them. But I didn’t buy them for style or make, I bought them for quality and fit. I bought them so that when I ran on dirt and rocks and roots jutting up I could keep going and going and going. And I do. Come talk to me when my face is red and I’m drenched in sweat, stretching after a good run, and ask me how I feel about myself and my body. I feel like a million bucks.

I love my body because it’s mine, not because it’s perfect. It’s my physical best friend. I treat it with love and care. Running is my peace, it’s where I get my strength after a hard day. Every bad thought and emotion gets shaken off to the rhythm of my breath and stride. It isn’t for everyone and doesn’t have to be. There are plenty of avenues for that same experience, I have friends that practice Yoga, others that dance. My ultimate purpose for having this in my life is that it makes me a better person.

I’m calmer. I’m healthier and more fit. I’m happier. I get to be alone in nature. My senses are completely engaged. I feel more connected to the world. I’m more confident. I feel good about myself. It’s proof that I can do it, day after day, week after week, and year after year. I worked really hard at first, I was not a natural. Asthma and arthritis in my feet attempted and failed to sabotage my initial efforts, they only taught me patience and determination. They taught me to pace myself, to be kind to myself physically and mentally. I have grown stronger.

The day after a good run I’m on top of the world, wearing my second favorite pair of shoes, which happen to be black over-the-knee boots, and feeling like a badass. What are you favorite shoes?

{ daily outfit: }

Black over-the-knee boots with avocado dress

Black over-the-knee boots with recycled sweater skirt, purple shimmery turtleneck

Black over-the-knee boots with mustard dress, black boyfriend blazer

Black over-the-knee boots with versace for h&m skirt, black button-down shirt

{ last note: }

You might have noticed my Google Friend Connect widget has been taken down. I found out that Google is discontinuing this product soon, I figured I might as well get used to no longer relying on it. There are still a variety of ways to subscribe to updates for this blog. In the meantime, I’d be delighted if you left me your url in the comment box, I’ll do my best to visit.

xo, f

 
12 Comments

Posted in Fashion

 

FBFF Q&A: Lookin’ good, baby

29 Apr

{ daily outfit: }

Daily outfit and style tip, wearing navy blue satin babydoll dress
Rockin’ the babydoll!

{ fbff: }

Sitting on Mt. Whitney summit

Sitting on the summit on Mt. Whitney with Fil

Have I been hitting the gym lately? (I missed a few weeks.) Do I take walks during my lunch break? (No. I get too hot and sweating at my desk is not my thing.) Is health, vanity or both? How am I staying in shape and why? The topic this week for Fashion/Beauty Friend Friday is just about that. I’ve mentioned snowboarding and running a few times, here’s a sneak peak into a completely different part of my life.

FBFF: Do you keep some kind of fitness routine? Why?

FJ: Yes. I run regularly. I snowboard all winter, I cycle here and there and hike regularly. I do it for sanity, physical benefits, health and fun. I also like the challenge of keeping it up. I’m in better shape and have better stamina now than I ever have before. Even with asthma, even with arthritis in my feet. Let’s face it, I like knowing I kick butt. Being outdoors brings me peace, running is especially zen for me, it focuses me. I start getting cranky when I don’t get exercise regularly. I have too much energy not to have an outlet. It also helps keep my metabolism the way that it has always been, I’ve been consistent for most of my life.

Bay 2 Breakers
My third or fourth Bay2Breakers with my friend Telene

FBFF: Has working out, maybe training for a marathon or something of that nature, helped with your own perception of body image?

FJ: Sure. I like being strong and fit. I don’t mind all the other physical quirks that are unique to me as long as I feel healthy. I’m proud of who am I which is defined by what I do. I had a couple ladies at work once tell me I was lucky that I could eat anything because I was so skinny. Well, I’m not skinny, I’m slender and in good shape. I wouldn’t refer to getting up at six A.M. to go running “luck”. I would call that hard work. Luck and good genes only take you so far, when you’re in your forties, you get there by earning it. I don’t know anyone my age who can eat whatever they want because they’re lucky.

Climbing clinic at Pinnacles National Park
Climbing clinic at Pinnacles National Park. I’m secretly a spider monkey

FBFF: When you are hitting the gym or just going out for a long walk what do you wear? Is it about functionality or fashion?

FJ: In a perfect world, it would be both. In my world, it’s gear. I want great gear. I want it to breathe, to move with me, not shift, not sag, not rip, not be itchy, not ride up. I want it to wick moisture, resist odor. I want to wash it a million times and have it last forever. I have technical gear for all my sports. For running, in summer I wear shorts and short sleeve shirts, in winter I wear Yoga/running pants and long-sleeve wool shirts. For hiking, I have hiking pants and tops but if it’s in the park by my house and it’s only for an hour or two, I might wear my Yoga/running pants and a breathable top. For cycling, I have cycling shorts and shirts. Snowboarding has its own set of gear.

White water rafting on the American River
White water rafting on the American River

FBFF: Do you feel there is a cultural perception of what you ‘should’ be doing for your own physical fitness?

FJ: Lol! Yes! I think it’s funny because even though I usually run three to four times a week, hike regularly and have one-off’s on the weekends, such as cycling or snowboarding, I think I should be doing more. More weight and core training, Yoga, too. I’m not doing those things. I’d like to but I can’t imagine when I’d fit that into my schedule. I also sometimes have to take a week or two off for sanity’s sake, I’m not hard on myself about it anymore, but I used to be.

Landing in the terrain park at Kirkwood
Landing in the terrain park at Kirkwood

I’m going to add that being in great shape has some additional benefits that I wanted to make sure and cover. Primarily, the confidence that endurance and physical strength has brought me in has translated into other areas of my life. You can’t buy that kind of feeling. The other is that having endurance allows me to be in places not for the faint of heart. I’ve gone white water rafting, kayaking, I’ve climbed Mt. Whitney, which was just amazing! I’ve seen parts of nature that are not easily accessible to the general public. Being able to be in those places is precious, I don’t take it for granted. It re-affirms my core belief that we are all connected and to always try and be the best person I can be.

When I’m able to hike to a pristine area in the snow and I sit and survey, I’m overcome with appreciation for being alive. The beauty I get to see, the perspective these places bring to my state of mind, to me, that’s worth every boring run on a treadmill. Sure I like to look good, but I like to feel good even more than that. When I feel good, it doesn’t matter what I look like, I’m radiating from the inside out. That’s the one thing no outfit, no make-up, no procedure can buy. That stuff comes from the heart.The coolest thing is that I didn’t start doing any of these things until my early thirties. Getting older rocks!

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for crafting this topic. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

{ style tip: }

I wore mocha tights with this navy blue babydoll dress. Mocha is an unlikely color to consider with navy blue yet it made for a very interesting take as a neutral in this case. Not all neutrals need to be uninteresting. It allowed the dress to take center stage while still providing a hint of color.

Have you every used an unusual color as a neutral in an outfit? What did you do? What color was it?

{ deets: }

Navy blue babydoll dress/ModCloth, mocha microfiber tights/courtesy of We Love Colors, black sandals/Dansko, steampunk inspired necklace/gifted.

 
 

You Give Me Fever.

22 Dec
This girl is back in the pink!
The strangest thing happened today. I felt under the weather all day; that part isn’t strange, it started yesterday. This was demonstrated by sleeping in, skipping the morning photo shoot, getting to work a half hour late, drinking very little coffee, snuggling my neck in very warm wool sweater and drinking tea all day.
I supported the above by sucking on zinc and echinacea, avoiding sugar, (except for that one and only chocolate cookie, shhh…), staying warm and taking it easy. By easy, I’m referring to leaving work a little early, hitting the gym for a short and gentle jog, lots of stretching and some quality time in the jacuzzi and sauna.
This is what happened next. I started running lightly, being very mindful of how I was feeling. Ten or so minutes into it, I started feeling light-headed so I slowed way down, mentally preparing myself to stop. I drank some water, got really, really hot, and then started feeling great. I’m telling you, this is not what I expected. I then stepped it up just a little, nothing too aggressive, and ran easily for an hour.
I’m pretty sure I broke a fever while running. I’m still confused about it.
I felt good enough when I got home to snap up a very low light picture of the top half of my outfit. Pink on pink on pink, pretty much. This is the pink cashmere twin to Old Faithful, the aqua cardi I wear practically every other day. Which has gone missing, by the way.
I’m going to put out an APB if I don’t find it by the end of the week.
Deets: Pink cashmere cardi/Bloomingdale’s, red and green flower tank/unknown, multi-color wool scarf/gifted, skinny black belt/Nordstrom’s, pink wrist gauntlets/hand-knitted by Stacy, black ankle cigarette pants/BDG, Urban Outfitters, purple flower necklace/gifted, wool felt headband/Anthropologie.
 
3 Comments

Posted in Fashion

 

09 Dec
Holiday cowgirl?

Love the chain! Yeehaw!

Peek-a-boo

Untitled. Accepting caption suggestions

While some might find themselves watching quality television on a Tuesday night, I was surrounded by a gaggle of cheerleaders. Professional cheerleaders.

I narrowly escaped the slow onslaught of bubbly cheerleader creep closing in on me as I stretched my limbs after running. At first glance I posed a question to myself, (silently, of course!), “a dance troupe?” as they happen to be great in numbers and seemingly limber. On the second occurrence I decided these tiny dancers, (oh yes, they are mostly tiny yet curvy), were loyal Raiders fans; they had branded gym bags and such.

Two nights ago, I spotted a pom-pom sticking out of a bag. Yes! These are the Raiderettes! (Thank you interwebs.) It does makes sense after all: Flagship Club One in Oakland, local football cheerleader practice. While I may not be the sharpest Crayon in the box, I’m proud to say that my Sherlock-like* powers of deduction brought me to  conclusion that I was in a potentially enviable position.

Although it may have been less than ideal for me and my selfish stretching, I don’t suppose many people can claim that they are officially one degree of separation away from a professional football player. Or cheerleader, for that matter.

My question is, am I one or two degrees of separation away?

On a different note, I found a huge beefy slab of, um, beef in the fridge at work today. Unwrapped, just hanging out in a drawer. I made my friend Jose touch it, I had a soupçon* that it was fake.

It added a nice touch of color to offset the monochromatic bit-mapped reindeer dress/tunic/sweater I wore today in addition to the teal leg-warmers peeking out of my vegan cowgirl boots.

Leg-warmers: No longer for the Eighties.

And how has your week been? Are any of you wearing something for the second time around? Just curious. And yes, I wore leg-warmers the first time around. Shhhh… it will be our secret.

Deets: Reindeer tunic dress thing/ModCloth, black leggings/Hue, faux cowgirl boots/ModCloth, teal leg-warmers/unknown, silver and mother-of-pearl cuff and necklace/Lois Hill, hand-carved wood earrings/Chicago.

* Sherlock. A BBC production. Just watched it. Highly recommend it.
† Soupçon: Hint or very small amount, (French). See how I snuck that in?

“Beef” photo by José Rodriguez

 
6 Comments

Posted in Fashion

 

30 for 30, day THIRTY!

08 Dec
In repose at Modern Coffee in Oakland. The best coffee shop ever!

Soft n’ fuzzy

‘Tis the season to… Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! Who brought Labor Day back? Judge not so fast, my friends, these are my Winter Whites. That’s right, all soft and woolly and creamy dreamy. Not, I repeat, not the crisp stark whites I used to wear in my LL Bean catalog fantasy life when my good-looking catalog husband and I went sailing. I wouldn’t go as far as calling this the pièce de résistance but I wouldn’t take it out with the trash tonight, either.

I tried to go out with a big fuzzy creamy bang except I’d pretty much run out of interesting options. Really, just trust me on that. That’s because I’m officially all done with the remix and I know exactly what I’m wearing tomorrow. You got a sneak peek earlier. I can’t wait!

I have to admit, it feels a little like The End of something. I’m going to take a few days and collect my thoughts on the experience. I will leave you with just this:

I passed up a holiday party to go running tonight. I’m either losing my marbles or I’m growing up, (I’m so proud of my adult self!) Oh, don’t look so concerned, there’s another on Friday. With cocktails.


Deets: Creamy sweater wrap/Old Navy, creamy lacy dress/YaYa Nom de Plume, skinny black belt/Nordstrom’s, black flower accessory/H&M, creamy knit tights/Hue, black leather ankle boots/Munro, tree of life necklace/gifted, kitties ring/gifted, hand-carved wood earrings/somewhere in Chicago.

 
9 Comments

Posted in Fashion

 

30 for 30, day 28. Insomnia.

06 Dec
The solid black tights under the lace pattern created such a nice effect

Pattern play

The scarf hung better once it settled

Sometimes, all this girl needs is a good outfit and the help of her old friend, Red Bull. I’m pretty sure you’re not supposed to come back from a relaxing weekend trip out in nature feeling like you partied like a rock star. When I pull out the overnight bags for a leisurely visit under my eyes I want to have earned it, kind of like frequent flier miles. I suppose only being able to sleep four hours last night was technically earning it.

But I digress. What I really to share tonight is that I managed to run twenty-five of my forty minutes with my head looking to the left. No, not an easy feat. Not even comfortable. I’m sure it looked as awkward as it felt. Sweet move. Good thing I’m not single, that’s sure to be the kind of maneuver that wouldn’t get me the right kind of male attention. Sweaty and awkward.

With the tenacity of a mule I chose to outlast my cologne-laden treadmill compadre to my right. Good grief, man! You hit me like a scented tornado with what’s left of what you doused yourself with, oh, say, sometime about 12 hours ago? I pray never to have to sit in a cube next to you. Speaking of, I was once nominated at work to be the bearer of “less is more” news to a coworker who wore perfume with the enthusiasm of kid on Christmas day. Surely one of the least effective ways to make more friends at work.

Hey! Check out my tights-on-tights action. Super Gothic* and dark, especially against the hint of visible black lace from my slip. I threw on this over-sized scarf to really mess with your mind, (and to keep me warm.) When the light hits it just right you can see a metallic gold sheen over the colored areas. Subtle on subtle on subtle. But not really. The graphic print is pretty bold, the dress is short, the hair had volume. What more does this girl want?

And the whole thing was so comfortable. I was afraid I’d completely run out of remixes by now but I have to give myself a little sparkly cupcake sticker for this one.

Deets: Black boyfriend blazer/Urban Outfitters, grey kimono sleeve dress/Generation X, scarf/Marshall’s, black lace tights/Nordstrom’s, solid black tights/TJ Maxx, brown man-made suede boots/Munro, silver and mother-of-pearl cuff and ring/Lois Hill, black ginkgo earrings/Braindrops, black pearl necklace/gifted.

* I have Gothic creds from my youth with pictures to prove it and everything!

 
2 Comments

Posted in Fashion

 

30 for 30, day 23. Basketball.

30 Nov
I love gold

Patterns and textures

I’m developing a fondness for basketball. Mind you, I’m not talking about the real sport that is basketball, I’m talking about that special phenomenon that is gym basketball. And I’m not talking about playing, either, I’m talking about watching it.

You see, the treadmills at my gym are placed in several locations. The first option, which I will refer to as the Trauma Viewing Station, is primarily facing the over-sized television monitors featuring a national news station. The second option, which I will refer to as the Testosterone Station, faces the basketball courts.

I’ve come to the conclusion that the impact which the (bad) news has on my running performance is not ideal. My eyes keep darting away from the monitor, yet I get sucked in over and over again by flashing headlines of found body parts and missing children. I almost cried the other day. Like I said, not ideal.

The Testosterone Station, on the other hand, is male primal behavior at its best. I confessed my fascination to my friend Ross last night. There’s a lot of jumping around, grunting and yelling, running back and forth; sometimes they even run into each other. It’s much more entertaining. I’m starting to recognize some of the regulars and developing nicknames for them, such as “Roger.”

Time flies when you’re watching grown men play. I’m very interested in staying healthy, especially given my daily morning chocolate indiscretions. This morning I was out of chocolate, unfortunately. I had to seek comfort elsewhere and found it by means of my gold leather belt.

I initially bought it for a Burning Man costume. It has since been integrated as a sometime key player in my wardrobe. I decided to shoot these photos indoors to feature our vintage raised felt wallpaper which complimented the gold pattern on my blouse. The pictures don’t do it justice. Imagine textured wallpaper. Feel it with your eyes closed. Perfect!

Deets: Cream sweater/Old Navy, Satin blouse/BCBG, grey cropped ankle pants/Express, gold leather belt/unknown, vintage brooch/gifted, black ankle boots/Munro.

Related Trivia: What Austin Powers movie inspired this look?
Unrelated trivia: Can you name the high-performance car in the photo?

 
6 Comments

Posted in Fashion

 

30 for 30, day 13. Keep moving, folks.

20 Nov

Nothing to see here. Move along, people. Ahhhh, well, so what happened is that the dog ate my homework. Um, ok, I just ended going straight from PJ’s to work-out clothes, to grocery store, to home, back to PJ’s. I had the outfit, I just never got into the outfit.

And trust me, you don’t need to see what I look like when I’m wearing my work-out clothes because I only wear them when I’m working out. The clothes are just fine, thank you. It’s the other part of the equation that has issues. No make-up, sweaty, ok, really sweaty, bad hair in a pony tail, sweaty.

Did I mention the sweat? I would much rather you envision me as a gym angel™. You know the ones who always look super hot and cute, they’re bright-eyed and their cheeks get just flushed enough, they never have to pant audibly or choke trying to get the last drop from the water bottle. I, on the other hand, I get crazy eye* after running and sprinting for an hour.

But I’m running for AN HOUR. How kick-ass is that? I don’t care what I look like when I’m done. Seriously.

But I am sweaty. No picture for you.

Gym Angel™: I just made that up. They’re kind of mythical, like airbrushed unicorns.
* From the movie “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou”

 
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Posted in Fashion