On a Pink Typewriter

a writer with a hearty appetite & an active lifestyle

Running Gear Spotlight: Garmin Forerunner 220 GPS Watch

Good morning, lovelies!

How’s everyone doing today? I’m in the midst of a busier-than-average work week. I have some coworkers in from Washington, D.C., and this whole week I’m spending time outside around some Navy bases in the SD area {new readers- I work with the military as a consultant, although I’m not actually in the military}. Even though I’m sure I’ll be pooped by the time Friday afternoon rolls around, I’m STOKED at the fact that I get to be off my computer and phone for once. ;-)

Anyways, I thought today would be a good time to tell you all about that new GPS watch I bought last month! I had asked your opinions when I was trying to nail down which to buy after my old Garmin bit the dust during the Long Beach Half Marathon in October, and I got some great tips.

I initially purchased the Garmin Forerunner 10, but ended up returning it within days because even though I’m a pretty simple runner, it was TOO simple for me.It didn’t have the ability to showcase more than two data components on the screen at one time, which was just not going to fly for me…. and I’m pretty sure its pace calculator was off. No gracias.

When I returned it to REI (<–loveeee), I went with the watch I’d be eyeing originally……. but whose price tag had scared me off.

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The Garmin Forerunner 220. {Photo from a 6 miler a couple weeks ago.}

Hello, gorgeous.

I had read extensive reviews beforehand and seen nothing but praise for this watch’s accuracy, which is what really matters most to me. I figured the hefty price was worth it for something that’s an investment, and will be used often. My old Garmin lasted me for five stinkin’ years, after all, which seems like a lifetime in tech land.

I actually bought the men’s version of the Forerunner 220, which comes in varying shades of…… black. Even though it’s meant for a male wrist, it fits me just fine (and for context, I’m very petite – 5 ft tall on a good day and small boned <—that sounds weird). To be honest, I was pretty peeved that Garmin decided women only want to wear hot  pink and purple and mint, which is basically all that the slimmer fitting female versions of their running watches are available in, Um, just because I’m a girl does not mean I automatically want my running gear to be cutesy. Same reason I think running skirts are ridiculous (sorry if you love them).

And YES, I own obnoxiously bright pink running shoes.

I do what I want.

Anyways, this watch….. I’m obsessed. It has a few different screens you can have up at one time when you’re running, and you can choose to show three data components at one time, which is exactly what I was looking for.data on watch

I always have it showing total running time, current pace, and distance.

{Note: this photo ^ plus the one below are from my 8-miler on Friday, which I’m kinda frustrated by; my legs were still zonked from speed work earlier in the week, so my pace was slower than my usual 9min/mile – particularly in the middle miles.}

The GPS accuracy seems spot on, judging by my own knowledge of certain running routes I’ve used, as well as a comparison to Google (and the less than reliable Map My Run app). It also held up in some light rain I got caught in two weeks ago too, which was reassuring.

It also vibrates after each completed lap/mile, which is nice! Helps me zone out and not pay religious attention to my watch.lap

It’s also not sensitive, which is helpful when you’re running in long sleeves. My old watch became a lot more sensitive to touch in the later years of its life, and would just stop or turn off the GPS function. The 220 isn’t a touch screen – buttons are all on the side, and it’s very intuitive to figure out.

The battery life is proving top notch as well (I think I’ve charged it just once since Christmas?), although I realize it’s probably far too early for any real judgement calls on that. It charges via an USB plug-in to your computer… easy peasy.

You can apparently upload your data to your computer and do some intense analyzing if you’re into that jazz… I’m really not (told ya- simple runner), but it IS possible. I’m old school and have always just used a little notepad to log run mileage/time. Not going for the gold here.

SO, bottom line, if you’re in the market for a GPS watch and you’re not a brand new runner (or someone who doesn’t care much about maintaining a certain pace and distance), I would highly suggest this badboy. In my mind, it was totally worth the $$$.

xo

 

Runners, what do you use to track your runs? I’ know some people swear by certain apps, but I’ve never gotten much into that beyond May My Run… 

 

Scenes From the Weekend

Hi loveys! I hope your Monday’s off to a great start! I feel like it flew by entirely too fast, per usual….sort of like all of January, really. Can I go back to Maui yet?

Here’s a quick recap of the weekend….

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Wise words, a la Sea Legs, a cute happy hour spot in Huntington Beach. 

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I present to you: January in southern California. I KNOW. I got in my long run along the Newport Beach boardwalk -out  and back along the water for a total of 8 lovely miles. I was hot (wearing long sleeves in January while Santa Ana wins are blowing = rookie mistake) and my legs were really tired still from Wednesday’s speed work, so my pace was riding the struggle bus for a good chunk of the run. I committed myself to just feeling blessed that I could run outside in sunshine while the majority of country was facing frigid temps, though, and it actually worked at making the run actually enjoyable even though I was internally frustrated at myself. This whole “running because I can” mantra is a win-win, folks. 

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Saturday morning before heading to a baptism, I spent some quality time in Starbucks writing and working on the blog. It was bliss…. There’s such a peace to getting some writing on an early morning and just taking time to reflect…. with a vat of caffeine.

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Have you guys tried this cab before? Saturday was a first for me, after my boyfriend picked it out solely for the label (“because it had a bear breathing fire…”), but we both loved it! It was very smooth and reminded me of chocolate covered raspberries, which is never a bad thing to be compared to, if you ask me.

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Finally tried Social in Costa Mesa for brunch! Oh maaaaan, you guys! SO good. I loved the vibe inside, and the food was delicious. They bring items out as they’re ready because plates are meant to be shared, which was the only mildly disappointing part of our meal, but only because I don’t share food. ;-)

IMG_5731Afternoon coffee date at Pappalecco in Hillcrest (San Diego) with a friend I hadn’t seen in ages. This place has the strongest coffee… I was literally jittery for hours afterwards from it! 

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I wrapped up Sunday with a lil Pure Barre action! My legs were shakin’ like crazy (perhaps also due to the aforementioned crazy coffee….?), and were total jello for the rest of last night.

xo

How was your weekend? Share some of your fav moments! Mine was blasting Taylor Swift while walking to meet friends Saturday night… in public, singing out loud. No shame when TSwizzle is involved… 

Running San Diego to Raise Money for a Cause

FRIDAY. We made it! High five.

I’m post-eight mile run and have just a couple fun updates for you guys before we get this weekend started.

In case you didn’t see it on Facebook, an article I wrote was published on Thought Catalog!

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I think that calls for a second high five, yes?

You can read the article here. And FYI, it’s a lighthearted piece — not a heavy relationship/life one like I’ve been more prone to in the past.  ;-)

As a writer who has been trying her hardest to get her words published for years, every moment like this feel enormous and so special. It may not be the New York Times, but gosh am I excited about it!

P.s. don’t follow this blog on Facebook yet? Well you should – easy way to find out new posts are up.

In other news, I’ve decided to use my upcoming half on March 8 to raise money for a cause that’s close to my heart!

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I’ve never really done fundraising (I just accidentally typed “rundraise…”) like this for a charity before, so it’s definitely a new experience, and truth be told I feel awkward asking people for donations. It’s just not natural to me…. BUT I do a lot of community service in my spare time – it’s something that is very important to me – so I figure it’s about time I try to actively support a cause that has directly impacted my life.

I’m running to raise money for the Cooley’s Anemia Foundation, an organization committed to finding a cure for Thalassemia (also known as Cooley’s Anemia), which – in a very abbreviated nutshell – is a rare and potentially fatal form of anemia. There’s a few different types of Thalassemia, with the most severe form being Beta Thalassemia, in which those affected don’t make enough red blood cells or maintain a normal hemaglobin (the oxygen carrying protein of your red blood cells) without assistance of blood transfusions.

I think it’s a safe bet to assume that most of you have never even heard of Thalassemia, and that’s okay! Consider me your own personal Bill Nye the Science Guy today.

There are certain aspects of my life that I don’t like to dwell on here (not the point of this blog), although I’ve hinted at it in this post and more recently in Wednesday’s post, but Thalassemia has touched my life in a personal way. As a result, it’s motivated me to take control of my health and push harder for what I want in life, and reminded me that people are more than any perceived disability or illness. We are all so much more than that.

Without further adieu, click here to access my fundraising page.

If you’d like to donate to my race or just pass along the link, I would be ever so grateful; every itsy bitsy amount matters.

And as always, thank you just for reading. xo

 

What are you doing this weekend? And if you’ve ever raised money for a charity, got any tips to share?

The Perfect Weekday Morning

Hi! Happy Thursday. Best day of the week, right here. Are we ready for Friday yet, or what?

Week day mornings have a tendency to blow past in a whoosh of emails and teleconferences around here. I’m a morning workout type of gal, but that rarely happens lately due to extra early meetings with east coast colleagues (time difference is a jerk). I’m usually rushing and hurrying and calling and typing in a frenzy. I work from home a lot for my current job, but all that means is that I’m likely in yoga pants while talking to you on the phone, and my go-to “office” is a local coffee shop.

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Today’s been one of the more low-key, quiet ones I’ve had in a while, so I decided to capitalize on the lull and take myself out for breakfast, something I basically never get a chance to do during the work week (which I’m sure you don’t either, if you work full-time).

It’s no secret that breakfast is my very favorite meal, not to mention one of my favorite things in life (easy to please), and all breakfast food owns a large chunk of my heart. As a result, going out to breakfast in the middle of the work week feels like a serious party. BRING ME ALL THE FINEST MUFFINS AND BAGELS IN ALL THE LAND. (<– Any fellow nerds guess that reference?)

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I headed over to Haute Cakes Caffe in Newport Beach for a casual breakfast + free wifi work fest, and their smashed avocado toast with poached eggs is one of my favs, {If you live in the Orange County area, you need to get your butt here and try it… their food is ridiculous and I sort of wish I could work for them,}

It was glorious.

And I tried not to pilfer the sweet potato breakfast potatoes the random man sitting next to me left on his plate (I’m a creep when hungry, but come onnnnnn).

My perfect mornings are made up of exactly this — getting up at a decent time (7am?), eating an amazing breakfast, a carafe of coffee, and getting s*** done (no cussing – my parents read this ;-) ) without being interrupted by a million work calls… and usually a morning workout, though that part didn’t happen today. I’m taking a rest day after shifting my schedule to accommodate a long run tomorrow instead of Saturday since we’re going to a baptism starting early that day. (And in case you’re keeping track of how much I have jumbled my training plan already, I ran 3 miles of speed intervals yesterday, and 4miles Tuesday).

Okay… coffee time. Enjoy the day, friends!

xo

 

Okay, now your turn! What is your perfect or ideal weekday morning?

Running Because I Can

Happy hump day, you guys!

Want to hear something nuts? I actually got locked in the stairwell of my office last night (apparently they lock the stairwells from the inside after 5pm)… um, yeah. Luckily I was quickly saved, and thanks to Monday’s holiday, I feel like this work week is flying by! No complaints here. ;-)

I wanted to give you guys a quick update on how half marathon training is going for the SD Half. I feel like in the past, half marathon training has become sort of all-consuming – I would eat, sleep, and breathe running and training schedules. I was constantly thinking about how to fit in my daily miles, and for some reason running actually become more of  a chore and less of a passion, or a hobby I love. Hence my whole “I’m breaking up with racing” speel.

But not anymore!

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I think I had a mini epiphany. Kinda, sorta.

Not to be dramatic, but around the holidays I was thinking about my health and how lucky I am to be alive and healthy, and started to feel overwhelmingly grateful for the opportunity to run at all, whenever I want. It’s a privilege.

I have been horrifyingly honest with you guys on this blog many times (just check my personal essays tab for verification of that…), and my experience running long distances has been no different. I do not take the ability to run half marathons lightly, for reasons I shared in this post about my first half marathon experience (the Santa Rosa half in August 2013).  Granted, I’ve let the stress of training and perfectionism get to me in the past, but overall, running is incredibly special to me, and as an adult, I’ve used my health to propel my interest in health promotions and fitness, and my pursuit of big miles.

But back to my epiphany! In the last couple of months, I’ve come to remind myself that in those times when I’m stressed about fitting in a few miles before work or anxious about tackling extra long mileage, that I run because I can.

BECAUSE I CAN.

And for as long as I can, I will.

Not that everyone and their mother should be a runner, or that I’m going to run races without abandon, but my point is simply that our health is at the epicenter of our lives. It’s not something to be taken for granted, or ignore. So if right now, I can take control of my health and run just one little mile, or down dog til the cows come home, or whatever…then heck – I’m going to make the most of that!

Mindset is a powerful thing, isn’t it? That’s my long-winded way of saying training for this half has been no biggie so far. Just a chance to eat extra pancakes, you know? {Fuel, obvi.}

I actually didn’t run at all this past weekend because I wasn’t feeling well, but I’m back in action and got in a 4 miler on my lunch break yesterday.  There’s 8 miles on the schedule for this weekend, and then all the brunch.

Because let’s be real, health or not, the best part of long distance running = extra reasons to snack.

xo

 

 

Why do you run/bike/swim/hike/yoga/whatever? What motivates you?

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