From the Little Acorn to the Big Apple

friends, food, and fitness

Allison: 4 on the 4th July 6, 2009

Filed under: Allison — flavprice @ 4:23 pm

The 4 on the 4th was great!! Team Emma did a fantastic job! The course was definitely challenging with tons of hills. My goal for the race was to finish in under 40 minutes, I ended up running the 4 miles in 37:08!

After I finish races I always think I could have gone faster and never really push myself to my full racing potential. I considered this as more of a fun run and didn’t want to take it too seriously and injure myself for the half in August. I ran the first 2 miles with my dad and sister – my 2 brothers-in-law did their own thing from the start. I was getting antsy so my dad told me just to go ahead and do my thing so I really booked it the last 2 miles.

The race was such a great time! There were people running barefoot, war veterans running with flags, and people wearing crazy 4th of July outfits. Running through downtown is the greatest part of the race, everyone is buzzing with energy and cheering you on! I ran a little too fast through town and had to walk for a few seconds. Overall it was a great experience! I definitely want to run the race every year – maybe one year Emma will be running with us! Pictures to come soon 🙂


Allison: Running Hiatus June 15, 2009

Filed under: Allison,Uncategorized,Vacations — flavprice @ 8:55 pm

After the half marathon, I decided to take some time off from all forms of exercise. Not only had I burnt myself out training, but I felt like I had really forgotten the real reason I was running. Because I had made running a chore, I no longer enjoyed it as I had before. Running in central park used to be something I did for fun and for myself, not because I HAD to get in a 4 mile run that day.

So after a few weeks of little structured exercise, I’m ready to get back into it! But first, I should recap my experience from the half!

Overall, it was great! I was extremely nervous at the start as I have never raced before in my life, and my first race was a half marathon. Of course, there was a freak heat wave and it was almost 80 degrees at 6:30 in the morning on my way to the race. I was completely unprepared to run in the heat, but knew the key was not to push it. Looking back on my training, the only thing I wish I could change was going on more long runs. They were part of my training schedule, but always fell on the weekends where I was traveling or simply didn’t have the time to devote to a 10-mile run. I didn’t realize how important those long runs were, and had only done one, 8 mile run prior to the race.

This time around I’m not going to constantly make excuses for not going on my long runs because 6 miles into the half, I was hurting. Had Joanna not been there to push me along I know I wouldn’t have made it in the time I did.

Although the race was both physically and mentally challenging, the feeling of crossing the finish line after all of your training and hard work is like nothing I’ve experienced before. I now know how people can become addicted to racing. Seeing all of my friends and family at the finish line made it even more worth it.

In the days following the race I felt lost with no training or any sort of long-term fitness goal in my future. I decided to sign up for another half marathon – the NYC half – on August 18th. i’m approaching this race very differently. I’m going to incorporate cross training and speed work into my routine, which I had included in my last training schedule – but skipped over just like my long runs. But I also want to make sure that this time it’s for me and my love for running, and not made into a chore.

The jump start to my (re)training for the next half was the JP Morgan corporate challenge last week. I thought running a 5k would be simple, considering I was in decent shape, but running 3.5 miles after not running for almost 2 months was definitely a challenge. However, Nolan decided to let me run with him for the first time (!!!) in this race, so that was definitely what kept me going.

I’m excited to train for this next race and am not going to let myself get burnt out. I have realized that although running is definitely physical, a major percentage of it is mental. It’s definitely not as easy as it looks!

I’ll be posting more frequently as my training gets more intense, and also writing about some major transformations I’ve made to my diet over the last few weeks!

I’m also posting a few photos of Joanna and I from the half that her wonderful husband took before the race!


half2! April 28, 2009

Filed under: Allison,Carbs,Fuel,Joanna — flavprice @ 7:31 pm

Pictures will come shortly.

We survived!!! This is Joanna now –  I am sure Allison will recap on the experience as well.

Personally, I felt the race was an awesome, fulfilling, rewarding accomplishment.  I slept great the night before – went to bed at 10:30 and woke up at 6, completely uninterrupted.  Well, Andrew said that at 1 am some motor cycle gang woke up the neighborhood, but I must have been too far into REM to notice. 

For dinner the night before I contemplated pasta, but settled on smoked turkey and hummus on whole wheat.  I had a few chips and salsa and a little ice cream too (wanted to eat a lot of carb calories!)  Upon waking I had 1 1/2 slices of bread topped with PB and a sliced banana. It was the perfect balance of carbs, fat, and protein to get me through 13.1 miles. 

Allison and I met outside of our subway stop and walked to the start. We had a lot of nervous energy and just couldn’t believe the day had finally come. We got so antsy waiting in line…we just wanted to start…once that gun went off we were so excited…it was surreal.

The first 3 miles went sooo slow. Being that it was 90 ish degrees, the full-marathon was cancelled.  Those marathoners joined us, making our race about 10,000 participants. That’s a lot of women! When we finally got in the groove the race went quickly! It ended up being 2 laps around central park plus an additional 1.1 miles.  There were hoses being sprayed throughout to cool us down, and plenty of water stops.  We walked through every station and I drank 2 cups each time – and I was still PURPLY RED from the heat.

Allison and I stuck together for most of it, and let me tell you it was awesome having her support.  We pushed each other and encouraged each other. I could not have done it without her. I even let her have half of my energy gel! I took two of those throughout the race, one at mile 5 and one at mile 10. They taste nasty, but boy did they help!  All of a sudden at mile 10 I was cruising….I started doing negative splits – it was so bizarre.  But, it was at mile 11 that the heat got to me. I felt queasy and wanted to stop.  But I didn’t! I kept up my pace and finished strong! I was so proud of myself.  Andrew was right behind the finish in the thick of it all (when you have an expensive camera it acts as a free backstage pass – no questions asked!)

My family was at the finish too – with an adorable sign made by my little sister. It made me feel so loved and supported.

I ate a bagel immediately upon finishing.  I thought it would settle my stomach. It actually didn’t and I felt pretty nauseous for a few hours – I couldn’t even enjoy lunch with the fam 😦 But, when I got home hunger struck hard and I pretty much ate my apartment.

Surprisingly, I was barely sore at all the next day! I am definitely tight, but I am walking fine and feel great. I am even thinking of doing another one in the future 🙂 We shall see!


Sunday can’t come soon enough… April 20, 2009

Filed under: Allison,Joanna,Long Run,Uncategorized — flavprice @ 8:20 pm

So you didn’t hear from us for a while after our juice experiment because it actually made both of us pretty sick. Well, not that sick, but we felt extremely out of it all day. Mainly because there is nothing in it but fruit, yes this is obvious, but it definitely lacks the protein and fullness that I need to not feel empty. We both snacked the entire rest of the day and confirmed that if we attempted to be RAW foodies for one day we would die and our company would need to find 2 new receptionists… considering we already do the jobs of about 6 people, this would be an impossible task.

You can tell I’m trying to distract myself from the fact the race is on SUNDAY. We are both anxious/terrified/excited/nervous and basically just looking forward for it to be over. We’ve been training for a really long time and just want to be crossing the finish line and rewarding ourselves with a huge lunch and our long awaited running hiatus.

I planned to do a long run around Nolan’s neighborhood on Saturday morning; we had mapped out a 7 mile route the night before. After completed the run (which was 99% uphill) in less than 50 minutes I realized either I had suddenly become superhuman or our mapping skills were not as accurate as expected. It turns out it was the latter, which makes me feel both good and bad. The rest of the week will be spent on shorter runs just to keep our endurance up. Joanna and I had planned to run together tonight, but with both weather and scheduling conflicts we’ve had to reschedule for what is probably the 10th time.

The weather for Sunday looks great (thanks to Nolan’s recent weather update). Let’s cross our fingers that his weather predicting skills are slightly better than his mapping skills 🙂

Sunday, Apr 26

High: 78 °F Real Feel: 76 °F
Mostly sunny and pleasantly warm


Countdown to the race!! April 13, 2009

Filed under: Allison,Joanna — flavprice @ 2:57 pm

We’re trying to stay motivated for the race now that it’s less than 2 WEEKS away! We decided to do this race before Christmas, so we’re pretty anxious to finally run! In the last few weeks I’ve felt kind of burnt out (I know Joanna has felt the same) so I’m doing my best to keep it together over the next few days.

Training has been going well! I’m not quite on track with my original schedule but am feeling confident about the race. We found out that the course is two-6.something mile loops around central park. I’ve run this course a few times and Joanna plans to do it in the next few days. I’ve surprisingly never raced before so it will be quite the experience to run my normal route with 5000 other people.

Also, we are both running in the JPM Corporate Challenge on June 11th. We’re going to take a little running hiatus after the half marathon, so this 3.5 mile race will be perfect. However, the most exciting part is that both of our significant others are running as well! Joanna and her husband, Andrew, have run together on multiple occasions… however my boyfriend Nolan (I hope he’s reading this) absolutely REFUSES to run with me, so this will be a momentous occasion for us to run together. Although, I have been told that just because we are running in the same race does not necessarily mean we are running together, but I’m still excited!

So we have lots to look forward to over the next couple of weeks and are doing our best to stay motivated!


New Shoes! April 3, 2009

Filed under: Allison,Joanna,Shoes — flavprice @ 6:56 pm

Allison again. Great news, I got new shoes! They’re Asics Kayano 15’s – let’s hope this solves the problem!

The woman at the store sounded a little surprised that I had plans to run a half-marathon after being so behind my training, but I’m not going to let that slow me down! I’m going to take it easy for the next few days and can hopefully do 2 long runs (10 miles) before the race. That will be the longest distance I’ve ever run!

Hopefully Joanna and I can train together when she gets back, although I guarantee she’s going to be way ahead of me. I’m sure she’s really staying on top of her training schedule while in California 😉

Have a great weekend!


April 1, 2009

Filed under: Allison,Shoes — flavprice @ 1:02 pm

Hello Everyone! Allison here, and I’m finally writing my FIRST blog post. I really can’t take much credit for this considering Joanna has done all of the hard work, but I figured I could do my part by writing while she was on vacation! I must admit, that I miss my exercise/foodie partner and it’s only been 2 days! Although we have YET to excercise together, I feel that we both keep eachother accountable throughout the week when it comes to training.

Unfortunately, I have been in a bit of an exercise slump lately.  I’m not nearly as excited about running anymore now that it’s mandatory and crammed into my already busy schedule. My favorite times to run are on Saturday mornings before Central Park is too crowded to move, but weekend trips and other activities have made it tough to schedule runs on the weekends. I know that’s not an excuse, but I do have a real reason as to why I haven’t been running in the past week.

A few weeks ago, I bought new shoes. I was overdue for a new pair –  i had been running in the same shoes since June. When I bought these shoes I was completely clueless as to what was the right kind for me. So when I decided to bite the bullet and buy new shoes, I was shocked to find out I had been running in shoes made for people with very high arches, whereas I have the flattest feet this shoe salesman had seen. I was extremely excited about my new shoes – Asics Evolution 4 ( aren’t they beautiful!)


For the past two weeks, every time I run I have had terrible shin splints and pain! I thought it was because I hadn’t been sticking with my training schedule while I was on vacation and was in a slump. It didn’t occur to me until a few days ago that it was my new shoes! I tried to run in my old shoes but could barely run .5 miles before I had to stop. So cross your fingers that I haven’t done any serious damage and will still be able to run in the half marathon! I am going back to the shoe store today and the doctor on Monday so hopefully everything will work out!

Hopefully this extra long post will make up for my lack of posting over the past few weeks!


A vacation from running? I think not! March 26, 2009

Filed under: Allison,Heart Rate Monitors,Joanna,Vacations — flavprice @ 3:54 pm

While training (or just trying to maintain an active / healthy lifestyle) it is a good idea to try and run / exercise while on vacation.  Obviously, if you don’t who cares – it’s vacation! But, if you feel like sticking to your training schedule we have some helpful tips.

1. If you are picking a hotel try and find one with a fitness center – or better yet an indoor or outdoor pool.  Swimming is a great way to cross-train.  Sometimes local gyms offer 1-week visitor passes. Look into that too!

2. If you are in a warm climate do a google search for trails or hikes you can walk or run on.

3. If you are going to the beach running on the sand is difficult but great for strengthening and toning. You can also run on the boardwalk which makes it easy to not get lost!

A great tool we use is : You can put in your current location or vacation destination and map out your own runs and tailor it to your needs. You can also search for specific routes and mileage posted by others.

With Joanna’s Garmin HRM she can use it to track distance if she doesn’t feel like mapping it out ahead of time. Pretty sweet.

Allison recently completed work outs in her resort gym in Mexico and Joanna plans on going on several beach runs in San Diego. Here’s to healthy travelling!


Shots? Beans? Gels? March 13, 2009

Filed under: Allison,Joanna,Long Run,Quick Fuel — flavprice @ 2:16 pm

That sounds kind of weird….we have been discussing what types of quick sugar we take with us when we go on a long run. By long run we usually mean 7 + miles.

Allison has had success with the following:

Clif  Shot Bloks (pic via: )


And also Luna Moons (pic via: fitsugar)


Joanna has tried gels….and her gag reflex kicked in (that’s not hard to do, she will gag at the drop of a hat)….she has found more success in regular old jelly beans! (pic source)


We put them in our pockets (or in a baggie in our sports bra) and usually eat them about halfway through our run. Or if you are like Allison you can eat them at your desk at work…like a fruit snack. Sort of.


<3 Rate Monitors

Filed under: Allison,Heart Rate Monitors,Joanna,Uncategorized — flavprice @ 1:38 pm

We have both recently purchased heart rate monitors.  Looking back our runs were fine without them…but WOW have they made a difference in training.

Here are some reviews of HRMs :

Joanna has the Garmin Forerunner305 and Allison has the Polar F11.

Using these we are both able to track our heart rate levels throughout the run, and also calories burned.  There is also a timer function to see how long you ran.

Joanna’s favorite feature on the Garmin is the GPS.  It tracks her distance via satellites and when she gets home she plugs it into the computer and it outlines the actual route that she ran = pretty amazing. She can save all her runs and even compete against her previous times.

Allison really likes the size of her polar. It is small and less bulky, so it looks like a normal sport watch.