Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Ski Season Begins!!

Hey All!!

Sorry for the long hiatus, midterm season has gotten the best of me but Alexis and I have made a renewed committment so get ready for a lot of new posts coming at you soon!

Skiiiii Season has officially begun and I am pretty damn excited! As many of you know, I am a raised Colorado girl and as the stereotype goes, I am enamored with the sport of skiing. I began to ski at the age of three although I was riding on my dad's back while he carved up the mountain since I could stand. Growing up skiing every winter and living in Colorado, the mountains became central to my consciousness and a symbol of everything good, happy, and free.
I have been blessed to be able to ski at some of the best resorts in North America including Snowbird, The Canyons, Whistler, Sqaw, Northstar, and Deer Valley, among many others. However my ski heart will always rest in the Vail resorts of Vail, Beaver, Breckinridge, Keystone, and Arapahoe Basin.
Arapahoe Basin opened up last weekend and Keystone will be opening up this weekend so all you Colorado readers, who I am always so incredibly jealous of this time of year, get your bums to the slopes!!

I will post more on my love obsession with skiing later but I wanted to leave you with a list of ten things I love about skiing to either get you excited for this year's ski season or convince you that if you have never skied before that you are missing out on an indescribaly remarkable experience!

10 Things I Love About Skiing

1. Conquering a new run that made your heart race when you first looked upon it
2. Finding the perfect line down a mogul run
3. Being the first one to ski the cordoroy behind an army of cats
4. Powder day
5. New ski gear
6. Knowing that you are so much cooler than all the snowboarders
7. Being the first/last one on the mountain so you can make big turns all the way down
8. Bowls and chutes... oh ya
9. Hot chocolate and chili in the lodge with family and people you love
10. Feeling like nothing else in the world matters besides bringing your skis around

Sincerely yours,


Thursday, October 28, 2010

My Obsession with Electrolytes

If you know me you may know I've got quite a complex about hydration. If I haven't had a full eight glasses of water in a day, along with some form of electrolytes I do not go to bed feeling healthy. While I've always been told by fellow runners and other athletes that it is very important to consume electrolytes, especially when exercising for long periods of time. I decided it was about time I figure out why the heck electrolytes are so important in prevent dehydration. So here it goes...

What are Electrolytes?

In chemistry terms, an electrolyte is a substance that contains free ions which makes the substance itself electrically combustible. Muscle tissue and neurons are electric tissues in the body that require electrolytes. Muscle contraction requires various electrolytes, and without a sufficient amount will lead to muscle weakness or even severe muscle contractions. In non-science genius terms, electrolytes are essential to maintaining hydration to all parts of the body.

Sodium and potassium salts are important for replenishing levels of water and electrolytes after dehydration cause by exercise, a night of too much drinking, diarrhea, vomiting, etc.

You don't need to down pricey sports drinks all of the time to maintain proper levels of electrolytes. You can make your own sports drink at home! The following recipe has a 6.2% within 2 liters of water.
  • 10 tbs. sugar (5/8 cups or 120 grams)
  • .75 tsp Sea salt (4.2 grams) or Morton’s lite
  • 1 package of unsweetened Koolade mix for flavor
  • Water to make 2 liters

It's really important when consuming electrolyte replacements though to include all the electrolytes your body requires: sodium chloride, potassium, magenisum, and calcium. All of these are available in sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade.

Electrolytes are also found in some foods many of us eat all the time:

Exhaustion is related to dehydration, so it makes sense that when we are tired we crave water and foods and drinks rich in electrolytes.
That's all I've got for now. Happy Halloween everyone!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Alexis' Camping Adventure Part II

My second camping trip of Fall Break was definitely more of a roughin' it experience than our trip to Lake Sherando. Bryant and I headed off to Paul's Creek to explore some natural water slides. We hiked about half a mile in to the creek where there were about 5 sets of slides created by the running water of the creek.

I somehow managed to get down 2 of them, despite it being freezing and really slippery. Good thing I had my handy water shoes to make it down.

"Yeahhh water slides yeahh."

Our sliding adventure was halted as we began to notice that due was soon becoming night and it was time to find a place to make camp. The trees made the evening much darker than expected so we had to find our way in the dark with one flashlight. There is never a better lesson to be prepared than actually not being prepared.

Not to worry we eventually found some ground to call home for the night. Bryant got cracking on making a fire and despite our efforts and my addition of various leaves, the fire was not maintained but our one flashlight and little propane tank provided enough light for the night.

Wolfgang Puck goes into the wild:

Pretty changing leaves we woke up to.

All in all a successful camping trip round 2. Can't wait to see what other adventures lie ahead.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

We're Alive/CAMPING

We're alive we promise. School has taken over and our free time is spent trying to fit runs in and making time for friends, etc. Enough for excuses, blogging will be coming back full force. The past month that I have not been blogging, I have already noticed a depletion in health. My addiction to mini Reeses has returned and it's killing me.

Anywho, Shelby and I were able to have spend some serious outdoor time with our good friends last weekend during Fall Break.

We left the planning to our good friend and Charlottesville native, Skylar:

In retrospect, that may not have been the best option considering his choice of eye wear. JUST KIDDING. Thank goodness for Skylar things went much smoother than would have happened if we had gone solo.

We trekked west to the Shenandoah Valley to Lake Sherando.

Shelby was pumped.

After setting up camp, we headed out on a 4 hour hike to Three Ridges. Eager to get to the finish, I found myself practically sprinting to the top. I managed to find some downtime with my girls on this here rock:

The hike was totally worth it. Can you believe these views? I napped mountain top until everyone dragged me back down the mountain.

And then the camera died...

Oh well. We went for a very quick swim in the Lake after the hike. We're talking REAL quick as the water was about 40 degrees. The rest of the night was spent huddled around the campfire. Skylar made me a gluten-free friendly camping meal of a burger topped on hashbrowns. Delicious.

Our attempts to make breakfast were short run, so we headed out to a Charlottesville staple the Tavern on the way back to UVa.

The camping trip was definitely a success. I loved it so much I went back out the next day to some natural water slides right outside Charlottesville. Look for a post about that to come. Miss you all and be sure to stay tuned to more posts in the future!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

My First Half Marathon!

Hey all!

Its Shelby. I am so sorry it has taken me so long to post about my first 1/2 marathon but here it is!

Alexis already described our many ups and downs trying to get to the race. but the morning of I was starting to get pretty nervous. I had not gotten as much sleep as I probably should of the Thursday and Friday before and then Saturday night I was so nervous about not being able to sleep that I ended up not really being able to sleep. Regardless, I knew this was the day and I just had to make the most of my energy. We woke up around 5 and I wanted to make sure that I stopped eating and drinking an hour before the race so I munched on a peanut butter and jelly Larabar and a banana while I was getting ready. By 5:30 we were out the door and driving to the race!

Despite our many parking mishaps we made it to the start of the race about ten minutes before it started. Seeing all the people there was both exhilarating and extremely intimidating. Having Mary there by my side (it was her third!) was definitely a huge relief. As the carrels moved up, my heart started to race faster and faster. Finally we were up and after a 1,2,3 countdown we were off. 

The first two miles I was just adjusting to all the things to see around me. Between the bands they had set up on almost every corner to the cheerleading squads, to thousands of volunteers and runners around me, it was a lot to take it. However for me, it is the beginning of the race which I dislike the most. I would much rather be in the 10th mile going through the pain then in the 3rd mile, awaiting the inevitable pain. I told myself that if I could just make it to mile 5, without any cramps or pains, then I could find my groove to finish the race. Soon enough Mary and I made it to the mile 5 marker and we were both feeling pretty good. It was in about the 7th or 8th mile however that I finally started to gain my confidence and strength. I was surprised by this because everyone was telling me that this was usually the hardest part of the race for them but between mile 7 and 11 was when I was enjoying myself the most.

By this time the people were more spread out and instead of everyone trying to pass and work around each other, it turned into more of this collective energy where all the runners were on the same team- I can't even count the number of encouraging and inspiring remarks I got. Let's just say I fell in love with running races in that time. 

Mile 12 and 13 were long and I was definitely starting to feel the pain, but knowing you only had such a short distance to go and all the people around you cheering, stopping is not one of things you are thinking about it. Plus the last mile was on the beach! It was absolutely beautiful. When I saw the finish line, I sprinted as fast as I could for the last 200 hundred feet and looked around and couldn't believe that I had just finished my first half marathon!

My goal was to finish before 2 hours and 10 minutes and I ended up with a time of 2 hours and 5 minutes so I was pretty psyched! After training all summer, I had finally done what I had been working so hard for and it felt great!

I realized though that it is important to focus on your own accomplishments when it comes to running. With thousands of people there running a half marathon, many of them a lot faster and stronger than you, sometimes you can downplay your accomplishment. But running, at least for me, has never been about beating out other people or trying to prove myself to anyone else- it is about facing myself and trying to push myself farther and faster than I did before. You have to celebrate your accomplishments, especially when you worked hard to achieve them. 

On that note, my eyes are now on the Richmond Half! As promised, I will be posting my training schedule for that soon! I think the VA Beach Half Marathon has crafted a race running addict ;)

Happy almost weekend!


Monday, September 13, 2010

Sunday Recharge

Hello all!

After a crazy weekend of foam parties, philanthropies, and birthdays, Mary, Ana, and I decided that a relaxed night of cooking for ourselves was just what we needed!

I headed over to Mary and Ana's sorority house and since they had a ton of veggie burgers in their fridge, we decided to build our dinner around that. We took to the local Harris Teeter to pick up some spinach, sprouts, and beautiful red and yellow tomatoes. Once we got back, all it took was a little grilling of the veggie burgers, cutting up the tomatoes and finally, putting it all over the spinach. To add some more flavor we seasoned it with salt and pepper and added some olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette dressing. 

Needless to say, we finished every bite...

This delicious meal plus a Sex and the City episode was all I needed to re-focus for the week! I took it pretty easy on the running last week but this week I plan to start training again, this time for the Richmond Half Marathon!! I am going to try to set out my training schedule tomorrow so stayed tuned for that! Also Mary and I are going to be making one of our favorite blogger's famous Green Monster smoothie this week and of course I will be posting all about my first half marathon!

Here's to Monday being over!


Saturday, September 11, 2010

A Lovely Saturday in Charlottesville

Hey all! Alexis here! Today Mary, Ana and I had a hankering for some frozen yogurt. So after a trip to the gym we headed downtown for some Sweet Frog. We spent the next couple of hours meandering down the mall and hitting up a nearby street fair. A trip to Cinema Taco may have occurred as well...

In classic Health Nut fashion, another photo montage:

Happy Saturday!