Bridal Body Slim Down: Day 3 & a Sugar Rush!!!

I was really thankful to take my rest day yesterday! I was able to tie up a lot of loose ends with the wedding. The playlist is now complete, the layout of the venue is drawn out, and times of arrivals and set ups have been confirmed. Thank the Lord!!!

Anyway, Day 3 of the Bridal Body Slim Down was more successful than the last 2. I finally had a grip on my schedule. So this evening, I was able to manage a 4 mile run with Peter and later completed an ab workout. 

I consumed the following...

Breakfast: GF Bread with REAL butter (more on that later), and pure honey.
Snack: Apple
Lunch: Leftover Chicken, Chili & Rice with Peas
Snack: Banana, Peanut Butter
Dinner: Egg Omelets with onions, green peppers, and black beans for added protein. All combined in a white corn tortilla with potatoes on the side (cheese omitted)
Snack: Another Pumpkin Pie Smoothie (HEAVEN!!!)

I feel pretty good so far. I haven't had any cravings, nor have I had any issues with bloating. I am hoping that I can keep it up because it is rare that I go this long without any puffiness in my mid-section!

As I stated in my original post, I have decided to rid my food and drinks of artificial sweeteners. I have made the switch to organic pure cane sugar. Though I was a little apprehensive about changing something I have been used to for years, I haven't noticed any negative side effects. What I have noticed though, is a HUGE difference between "fake" sugar and "real" sugar.
  • My cane sugar is darker in color, tinted or tan-like, while artificial sweetener (specifically Spenda) is pure white.
  • Splenda is more of the consistency of a grainy powdered sugar. It's not crystal-like grains like cane sugar.
  • Cane sugar is heavier & sinks to the bottom of a drink even after an initial stirring. 
  • TASTE! Splenda tastes a lot sweeter. Though that sounds like a perk, it truly changes your perception of what sweet is! I do not consider this a good thing.
  • Sugar rush!! I noticed that when I consume the cane sugar in my coffee or tea, that I get a bit of a sugar rush. I never did with artificial sweetener. I can't determine if this is a good or bad thing. Though my thought is this: It is a natural substance and my body is going to have a natural reaction to it. Taking in an unnatural substance, my body isn't going to know what it needs to do. 
I am going to experiment with this a little longer to see if my body shows any changes, whether physical or mental. Overall, my goal is to start avoiding artificial substances because these chemicals may impact my chances of cancer. I want to keep the abnormalities I did have in check. If that means ridding my body of unnatural substances, then I'll do it. 

My only concern is soda. I do drink diet soda here and there just to mix with alcohol on the weekends. I am more hesitant about switching that then adding real sugar to my tea or coffee. I have yet to be faced with this challenge, but I will definitely try!
Anyway,  I am hoping Day 4 is just as successful! Just a few more to go and I hope to be ready for this wedding!!!

Bridal Body Slim Down: Day 1 & 2

Oh boy! These last two days have NOT gone as planned. 

I had my bachelorette party on Saturday night and although it was not Day 1 of my slim down, it greatly affected my Sunday. The ladies and I stayed out past midnight, then joined the boys at our home for some after party shenanigans. The festivities went well into the morning hours and I still recall people being up till about 6 am. I did go to bed around 3:00 am myself, but that was still hours after my normal bed time. 

I awoke at 8:30 am and enjoyed eggs and sliced potatoes for breakfast. Surprisingly, I felt well enough to do my long run. 

I wanted to do 13.1 miles, but I had to cut it short by a mile. I had to be at our wedding rehearsal by 1:00 pm and I was pushing 11:30 am when I finished 12.1 miles. I had just enough time to shower and dress.

Peter and I completely missed lunch, but I was able to grab a handful of almonds to keep me satisfied until we had a legit meal at 3:00 pm. We decided to go out to sushi, where I had 3 rolls, no spicy mayo or soy sauce. Lots & lots of water was consumed!

Once we finally returned home, we cleaned up the kitchen from the party tornado that came through during the night and then lay on the couch for a few hours. Needless to say, we were both COMPLETELY exhausted. I was unable to get in a strength workout because of how tired I was.

I managed to end my day with another meal, which was a wrap. It included turkey, onions, peppers, cheese, a little bit of salsa and yogurt on the side. Yet, I was in bed soon after.

My exhaustion has leaked over into Day 2 and I have decided to abstain from running today. I would much rather take a break and have a better run tomorrow, than have a bad run with lead legs. I was still able to maintain good eating habits today.

Breakfast: GF Chex with Almond Milk

Snack: Grapes

Lunch: Salad (Spinach, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Onions, Peppers, Avocado, Snap Peas, Baked Chicken Breast, Balsamic Vinaigrette), Apple

Snack: Banana, Peanut Butter

Dinner: Chicken Chili & Rice (Long Grain White Rice, Garden Fresh Tomatoes, Chilies, Jalapenos, Peppers, Onions, Chicken Breast, Black Pepper, Salt, Crushed Red Pepper), Peas

I also drank PLENTY of water and successfully stayed away from artificial sweeteners. 

Since I didn't run today, I intend on running tomorrow! I will assume the plan as normal! Remember, just because things didn't go as planned doesn't mean you give up!!

Sorta Silent Sunday: Bachelorette Edition

My lovely ladies joining me for a night of MAYHEM!!!

Bar #1

The fireman let me wear his jacket

Dancing to Austin Ellis from The Voice

Posing it up with Austin Ellis!

This was a Bachelorette To-Do: Pose sexy with a bike

...and pose sexy with a sports car...I twerked it (another to-do)

I do not remember why I frowned.

Still made it out the next day for a 12 mile run!

7 (err 6) Day Bridal Body Slim Down

It's the final countdown!

That's right! Who has two thumbs and is getting married next Saturday? THIS GIRL!

I have anxiously waited for this day to come and it feels like it has taken forever! I feel that most people say that it came up so quickly, but I think this last year has DRAGGED! Now, we have most of our ducks in a row and are more than ready to get this show on the road!

As a part of my last 7 (well 6 if you don't count the wedding day itself) days of the single life, I decided I wanted to feel/look my best. So I am testing out my very own version of a 7 Day Bridal Body Slim Down. I want to ensure that I will not be bloated and uncomfortable in the wedding dress that has now been altered to fit me like a glove. There is no room to pudge up!

I have made a couple of rules to help keep the bloat out of my system for these final days.
  • Absolutely NO Gluten. I am about 90% GF, but this week, 100%!
  • NO Artificial Sweeteners. Not in my tea, not in my coffee. This is not just going to be a bridal body rule, but this will become an item I cut from here on out.
  • 50% Dairy Free. I love cheese. I eat A LOT of cheese. More cheese than I should. I only want to cut back this week, not get rid of completely. 
  • Drink 3 Liters of Water Per Day. I am typically good at this, but I want to make this a rule and not slack, no matter how busy I may get. Water keeps the pipes oiled and lets everything "flow" better!
  •  NO ALCOHOL! I usually do not drink Sunday-Thursday. But I have fallen off the horse with football Sundays and with the amount of wine I have acquired from my bridal shower, I have made exceptions. For this week, no alcohol Sunday-Wednesday. I will allow some wine on Thursday and Friday since that is technically the beginning of my weekend.

I have made myself a fitness plan for the week. It may or may not be changed due to an ever-changing schedule. But I still want to follow it pretty closely!

  • Sunday: Long Run (At least 10 miles, aiming for 13.1 or more). Strength training with dumbbells.
  • Monday: 3-6 mile run. Ab workout.
  • Tuesday: 3-6 mile run. Pushups & squats.
  • Wednesday: 3-6 mile run. Ab workout.
  • Thursday: Rest Day.
  • Friday: Long Run (8-13.1 miles). Strength training with dumbbells.
Food is really important this coming week. I am confident I will get my workouts in, but food tends to be my weaker area. Though I will not list every meal that I am going to have in this post, I want to give an idea of what I plan on doing this week.
  • Sunday: No added sugar/candy. Focus on foods that promote detox. Detoxing foods can include apples, almonds, garlic, onions, and avocados. 
  • Monday: No added sugar/candy. No dairy. Fill up on fruits and veggies! Have a salad and a fruit on the side! Stick with detoxing foods on this day as well.
  • Tuesday: No added sugar/candy. No dairy. Stick with fruits and veggies and make sure you are getting your protein! Avoid red meat.
  • Wednesday: No added sugar/candy. No dairy. Remain focused on fruits, veggies, and protein. Start to take digestive aid. I use Arbonne's Digestion Plus, which is very mild and keeps you regular!
  • Thursday: No added sugar/candy. Keep lunch light to balance the heavy dinner. I am allowing dairy since it's our weekly pizza tradition (I am not having pizza without cheese!!!). Allowed 2 glasses of wine ONLY! Take digestive aid.
  • Friday: Since long run day, make sure to eat high protein. Reduce bloat-promoting veggies like broccoli to prevent any belly gain. Take digestive aid and detox tea.

Still feeling hungry or having a craving?
  • Have a few nuts with a glass of water to fill up your belly.
  • Eat some non-bloating veggies.
  • Have an apple or a small fruit. Better than grabbing a sugary snack!
  • Try some flavored tea. The taste my reduce a craving!

As I mentioned above, this is my own version of a 7 day plan. BUT, feel free to try it and let me know if it worked for you!

Last Saturday Long Run As A Single Lady!

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie!

I have said this a million times before, but I will say it again: I. LOVE. FALL! Not just for the weather or for the colors.

I think you know what I am talking about! The food and drinks!

 I know that many of you wait all year for the release of Starbucks' seasonal pumpkin spice latte. Although I do love a good pumpkin-flavored beverage that includes caffeine, I have decided that I will not be buying any from Starbucks this year.

You may have read several articles (stemmed from this one) that have stated that this seasonal favorite does not include the most ingredient of all: PUMPKIN! That instantly turned me off! I have lived on a farm my entire life and we have grown pumpkins every year. I have invested time into cooking these bad boys and making pumpkin puree. I have used it for my own pies and other seasonal desserts. The taste of fresh pumpkin puree is like no other! So when I heard that Starbucks didn't even use puree, I was really disappointed.

I decided to invest my time and money into my own creation using actual pumpkin! It may not contain caffeine, but it is a delicious (and healthier) treat for any time of the day! You can enjoy it for breakfast, a snack, or even a meal replacement!

Pumpkin Pie Protein Smoothie

  •  1 Scoop (about 50g) of Vanilla Shakeology
  • 2 TBSP Libbey's Pumpkin Puree
  • 1 C Almond Milk (I used 1/2 almond and half water since I had vanilla almond milk)
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 8-10 Ice Cubes

The easiest directions in the world: Throw it all in a blender and let 'er rip!

I drank this gorgeous beverage in no time and felt no remorse!!! It is just under 250 calories, so what is there to feel guilty about?!

Gluten Free Experiment

I never thought that my 30 days going gluten free would turn into 3 months!

I began this challenge to not only see if I could survive without bread, but to see if I noticed any physical changes in my body. I did some research and found that gluten may be the cause of the frequent bloat in my mid-section. Due to the discomfort I felt day in and day out, I was willing to try anything and thought "why not go GF!?" I was done with looking at myself in the mirror and questioning if I were "fat." The body negativity was unbearable!

I never assumed wheat was my issue. At least, I tried to deny it had anything to do with how I felt. I loved bread, pasta, crusts, cookies....the list goes on and on! My misery outweighed the obsession I had with wheat, however. I decided that after my sister's wedding festivities ended, I was making a change!

It could not have happened at a better time either! Farm-fresh produce was coming in like crazy and they are all basically GF!

I was also able to find GF versions of my favorite meals like PIZZA CRUST (my all-time favorite Friday dinner!).

GF Waffle Cone!

Becoming gluten-free not only forced me to bake and cook my own meals more often, but it pushed me to be more creative. Like replacing pasta with zuchinni noodles, for example.

I would have never tried this if it weren't for becoming GF. Quite honestly, it was a nice change! I loved how I felt after indulging in a plate full of "spaghetti" without feeling maxed-out full!

Anyway, after just a few days of ridding myself of gluten, I noticed the bloat occurred less frequently. After a month, I noticed my tummy was shrinking. After nearly 3 months, here's the physical difference.

Though there is still a little pudge that hangs out, it is less prominent and I am happy with that!

I would say that during these 90 days, I have been 90% GF. I have had some cupcakes since we taste tested flavors for our cakes, had a donut after the Krumpe's Donut Alley Ralley, and a delicious cookie at my bridal shower. I have also had some foods that didn't necessarily contain wheat, but may have been exposed to it when it was manufactured. However, since I don't have celiac disease, I cannot say that this would truly have a huge impact on how I felt.

In conclusion, I plan on continuing these eating habits for months to come. I imagine I will continue to have gluten from time to time, but I am extremely happy with my results and how I feel. Gluten will remain on the back-burner. I also recommend that others try this eating plan. Even if you are not willing to go all the way, replacing a few meals may make a difference!

Will you ever try to go gluten-free? Why or why not?

Are you presently gluten-free? What's your favorite GF meal?

Medal Hangers for Sale!!!

You may recall that several months ago, I made a DIY Medal Hanger post. Well, if you don't have the time to invest in making your own, you are in luck! I am selling them!

Go to my listing here, or you can click to your right where the item is listed. 

If you use the code runfrecklesrun, you will receive a discount off any order until the end of October! :)

Running Bib Invitations!

Good evening, my dear friends!

I recently became involved in the website, Etsy, as a seller. I have a whole ONE item on my page, but thought I would tell you all about it since it is running related.

Just a couple of months ago, I decided to make my own wedding invites. Since both Peter and myself are both runners, it seemed only right that the wedding invites were running bibs. I looked into having someone else make & print them, but it was going to be over $300!!! I could do what I wanted for a 3rd of the cost!

Alpha was out model once we punched the holes in each corner.

Since many runners want their own "Save the Dates" or wedding invites for an affordable cost, I thought that I would offer digital downloads. That way, the buyer gets the custom image they want and can chose their own store to print them.

I just completed my first order and was super excited that someone chose me to help them for their save the dates! I would love to help with yours as well! Go to LindZLous shop here!


After wishing and praying that they would open more spaces for the Half Marathon, they did!


That is all!

Running an Ultra Marathon

I never thought I would be one to run with a partner. Yet, these last two days I have been very thankful to have had Peter join me! Not only did he push me to 10 miles yesterday (I was going to give up at 8), but he pushed me out on the trail today when I was going to skip!

I really picked the right man to marry! 

Anyway! Just as I said yesterday, there are a lot of exciting things I wanted to share with you. One that has been present lately is my new goal of running an ultra! Time and time again, the thought has crossed my mind. I was never quite serious about it until just recently. A couple of months ago, while running with a local group, I spoke with a man who told me of his experience running the JFK 50. Though he never gave me the impression that a 50 miler was easy, he made the completion of an ultra believable; attainable. It wasn't long after, that I began reading about other runners who completed the JFK 50 Miler.

A detailed recap written by Girl, Interrupted provided the good, the bad, and the ugly details of the JFK.
"I saw a man on hands and knees in the middle of the road. I saw people slouched forward. I saw a man crying. I wanted to join throw up the white flag and let the overwhelming fatigue win."
Though it seemed that many runners got a beating from the race, my interest grew. Could I possibly be up for the challenge?

I have taken a special interest in the JFK 50 Miler specifically because it is held right in my backyard. In fact, many of my runs are on the canal which the JFK 50 in run on.

Click the image to see full size.

Last year, I was out running 13 miles when I actually witnessed the leaders plow through mile 38. Some of you JFK 50 runners may better know this area as the "Special 38" aid station.

Though I will never be running my first ultra at 6:30, I actually do qualify! As of this year, a woman can register for the JFK 50 Miler if she has a marathon time below 5 hours after 2012. I will never be able to train in time for this year's JFK, but I am focused on 2015. It will be my all-time running goal (as of now) to finish an ultra marathon.

I have reached out for some advice on a JFK 50 Miler facebook page

I wish that running a 26.2 meant I could do 50.  It may be mental as Clayton states, but I need to train for that. I have hit walls during runs before. When I attempted running a marathon for the first time alone, my journey was cut short at mile 23. I believe my body was well-capable of finishing the full, but my mind had a different agenda. I have run two 26.2 distances since without hitting any wall, but I think it was my training that helped with that!

From what I am reading, many runners will walk portions of any ultra. It may be on the hills, or it may be at intervals as Randall recommends. I was even told by another runner that he wished he had walked the length of the Appalachian Trail because of how challenging it is.

Rocks everywhere!!!
I have taken some tumbles on the C&O Canal, one which left me with a gruesome gash in my knee, but I can say that the canal is no way next to how treacherous the AT is.

I do have a lot of fear of this race. Most of that fear comes from the dangerous trail, but the distance itself. Yet, I think my motivation to complete an ultra outweighs any uncertainty that I have.

Since I am giving myself a year, I think I have plenty of time to shape up for this. I am also lucky enough to have access to many runners who have participated themselves. Any advice from a finisher would be the best advice I could receive.

So tell me...

Have you completed an ultra marathon? What training methods did you follow?

Do you believe in the idea that "If you can do 26.2, you can run 50?" Why or why not?

Have you run the JFK 50 Miler? I would love to hear your story! Send me your contact details so we can talk! Send your email to

Race Recap: 2014 Mad Anthony Half Marathon

The fall weather has finally arrived in Maryland and I am extremely grateful! Though I wish it came a tad sooner, I will take the cooler mornings and say "adios" to the humidity that choked me. It seems that is now behind us until 2015 rolls around!

Anyway, I wanted to dedicate some time away from my busy schedule to talk about the half marathon I participated in yesterday. I did the Mad Anthony Half Marathon in Waynesboro, PA again this year. Earlier this week, I did have some second thoughts to my registration. I have been so overwhelmed trying to tie up last minute wedding plans that I thought skipping out would have benefited me. I am glad I thought against it.

I woke up at 5:30am yesterday to prep myself for the race. They were calling for all-day showers and I had to be prepared! I slathered myself down in Body Glide to prevent any chaffing I could have inflicted and picked out the best moisture wicking clothing I could find. I also settled on a visor to keep any rain off my face and decided to leave the sun glasses at home.

I was really excited to wear my new kicks. Aren't they gorgeous!?

My HipsSister belt rounded off my race outfit. I lined one of the pockets with a plastic bag so I could still bring my iPod without worrying if it would get damaged in any rain.

After breakfast, we headed into Waynesboro, PA so I could pick up my race packet, which included TONS of product samples, one of which was Men's vitamins (kinda was disappointed they didn't have women's since half the participants were ladies). After getting my number in place, Peter waited with me until they called the runners to the starting line.

He was supposed to participate this year, but due to tendon issues over the summer, he was not able to get his mileage up. Luckily, they let him defer his registration to 2015!

Just before 8, we were called up to the starting line to do a prayer and hear the safety guidelines. Though it was not raining, they advised that rain could make the road very slick since it had not rained in days. That and the road was still open to cars so that could also make for a potentially dangerous run. Point was, keep watch!

I joined Chris and Carly at the start line. Last year, I did not know anyone and it usually is rare that I have friends running in races with me. So it was cool to join my running buds at the starting line.

When the starting horn blew, I sped off, quicker than normal. Usually, I try to be very aware of my pace, not let the race excitement push me out of my zone, but on this day, I was flying. I stayed near Carly for about the first mile, while Chris sped off in front. But I felt compelled to speed ahead of her even with a strong feeling that I would be regretting this speed later.

I caught sight of Peter at mile 2. Loved this shot he got. This is just as I told him "I love you!"

I stayed pretty speedy up until mile 3 to 4. The smooth pavement we once ran on turned rough. Gravel covered many areas and it was extremely uneven.

I lost a lot of speed due to fear of tripping. Though I found myself getting tired after trying to be careful, I caught a second wind after we hit the pavement again. About a mile later, however, a hill at mile 6 forced me to slow down. I knew that this hill was coming since I  but I was still surprised to see how large of an elevation it was. A few of the runners around me walked, but I pressed on. I hate walking during any run because I feel that it messes with my flow. After that, the next few miles were pretty much downhill.

Nearing mile 7, I caught sight of Carly in the corner of my eye. I was now worried that I was too quick in the beginning and now I was slowing down. But I said I quick hello as she passed and stayed on her tail. Carly had a great pace for me to stick to. She teetered on 8 minutes according to my watch, so I followed her for a few miles. I passed her around mile 10 as I got my 3rd wind in the race, but I had a feeling in my gut she was going to catch me again in a mile.

The dreaded mile 11. I feared this mile.You begin at a 626ft elevation. For the next mile, you climb about 75ft. Yes, many of you Colorado runners probably scoff at such an increase, but it is evil for us here! Just like some at mile 6, runners were walking the climb. With the thought of Carly right behind me, I kept going, trying to keep the same effort.

Everything thereafter felt easy. With just a mile to go, you just sped for the finish line.

This picture looked quick similar to last year's sprint to the finish.

I finished in 1:48:40.

Sure, I was a little disappointed that I hadn't reached my goal of 1:45:00. It was something I was hoping to get before year's end. But this will be my last half marathon for the year. Broke runner! Still, my time wasn't bad at all. First, I avoided the downpour that happened, but what's more important was the stats!

Division: 1st Place Female, 25-29 (5 total runners)
Gender: 5th Place Female (87 total women)
Overall: 39th out of 189

I got to stand on a podium and everything.

Carly got second because she kicked just as much ass as I did. I mean, she did pace me for 3 miles anyway!!! Chris killed us both by finishing in 1:31:50 and getting 2nd in the Master's group!

Overall, it was a great race, just as it was last year. I think I actually enjoyed it more this time around. I knew more of the runners and those who had also volunteered in the race. I loved being able to talk to everyone rather than be a wallflower.

Next year should top this though because I will be running it with my HUSBAND! Speaking of which, this was my last race running as Lindsey Britner. In just a matter of weeks, my last name will be changing! So that also made this race a huge deal! It's the end of an era and the beginning of a new story!

Anyway, since a lot of the wedding planning is behind me, I should be able to start updating a little more between now and the wedding day! I should be back to the regularly scheduled programming come October! Thank you all for your patience and those that have stuck by me during this amazing transition in my life! I have so much to share with you! Stay tuned!

It's calling for rain on race day, what are 3 things you MUST have?

Do you have a common race pose?

If you don't reach a yearly running goal, how do you feel? What do you do?

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