Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Fitness at Home

Wednesday mornings are supposed to be cross training mornings in the world of half-marathon training at the Alcorn house. So this morning when I woke up late (6:30, the time we should arrive at the gym) I decided that I wasn't going to let that ruin my workout (especially since we didn't get up and run yesterday).

A couple of days ago I was Stumbling Along the vast interwebs when this lovely image popped up on my screen:
Sorry, I don't have the source...
I took a picture of it with my phone because I like to workout outside when we workout at home and it's a whole lot easier to just bring my phone outside than my computer. So I got my clothes on and came out to show David that he needed to go get dressed too (I don't talk a whole lot first thing in the morning).

We took the yoga mat and a kitchen chair out in the front yard. I turned on the Pandora station 100% Exertion and we started our jumping jacks. Let me just say that I haven't, until this morning, done jumping jacks in years. They are GREAT at getting the old ticker, well, ticking. We did 3 sets. We finished up at about 7:10 or so. I do my pushups and burpees on the kitchen chair.  David does them the manly way - on his fists on top of the hot pink yoga mat!

I challenge you to try this. It requires no equipment. Just a good sports bra and sneakers that will give your ankles support from all the jumping you'll be doing. Keep good form. Don't take breaks between exercises. It'll wake you up and, in the TN summer mornings when it's 70 degrees outside at 6:50 a.m., you'll work up a sweat that you'll really love washing off in the cool shower!

We did this and my day was amazing. Again, I challenge you to try this. Start with one set. As my favorite Biggest Loser, Antone Davis, says, "You just have to get moving."

See - isn't this better than the last post?! 

This post is nothing but a jumble of words that make no sense.

You've been warned...

I've been struggling with the whole blog thing lately. I don't know what that is a sign of. I've been working on a post for about 2 weeks now. It's not anything monumental for anyone else, but I think that the struggle with that is affecting other post ideas, too. I also feel like no one is going to want to read a recap of the same thing every week or so. If I posted training recaps they would eventually all start to look like this: Ran on Tuesday. Cross-trained on Wednesday. Ran on Thursday. Took Friday off. Cross-trained on Saturday. Ran a [insert slowly increasing number here] mile run on Sunday. That would get boring to read and be boring to write. I need to figure out how to mix things up I guess.

I've been struggling a lot with the same things for my Twitter feed, too. You can follow me @rebeccalcorn if there is anything in my timeline that interests you. Don't know if there will be. I don't know what's up with this self-doubt, but it's really annoying me! I think that I'm putting too much emphasis on what others will want to read and not on what I'm experiencing as I train for this half marathon and change my life. Maybe I just need to say screw what everyone else is thinking. They don't have to read the damn blog anyway. I don't need to post links to Facebook and Twitter every time I post a blog. I can type up posts and not even publish them.

I get a lot of encouragement from my friends and family on Facebook when I post that I just completed a workout or a run so it's obviously not too much of a pain in the ass to see that, but I guess I just feel like I'm forcing my mundane life on people when I say stuff like, "I just posted another blog, won't you please, please read it" or "Look what I did and how special I am." I think that I need to realize that people don't care that much. I don't know.

But then there's the other fitness bloggers that I read. Melissa over at Live, Love, & Run posted this blog about her Evolution of a Runner tonight. Holy cow. It made me cry. That's the kind of experience I want to have when I run 10-miles. I want to know that I've accomplished something, and I know that I will want to share that experience with other people.

I realize that this post is a rant and looks like I'm seeking attention and hoping that people will tell me that I'm doing an amazing job. That's not it at all. I know I'm doing a great job! I feel the difference. I guess what the bottom line is, is that I don't know if people will want to read what I write. And maybe a small part of it is that I don't know if running is all I want to write about.

Wrapping up the rant/diatribe now! What do you look for in a blog? What makes you want to read something? I've noticed that I've been getting bored with some of the bloggers that I follow. They always post about the same things. I enjoy reading some of this stuff, but I think that I'm seeking a little bit more. Help me out here! Is just reading about my running and Foodie Pen Pals enough for you? What do you want me to write about? Let me know in the comments.

I shouldn't even publish this, but I'm going to. After re-reading this I realize it's a complete babble. The only coherent section is where I talk about Melissa's accomplishment. *sigh* I'm going to go type up another, more structured, meaningful post about a workout. See - it's all I can think about.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

London - A honeymoon 3.5 years in the making.

David and I recently returned from a trip to London, England. We were there for 6 days. We went for our honeymoon. Really it was supposed to be a graduation celebration, but since his thesis was postponed by another semester we decided to make this our honeymoon. We never went on one after the wedding since we got married on Halloween and he had to go back to class the Monday after the ceremony. Anyway - I am not going to put a whole lot of detail in this post just because we want to keep the memories for ourselves, but I do want to share some of the pictures.

I'm sure that everyone has seen most of the places that we saw, but I know that there are several friends and family out there that are anxious to hear about the trip. I'll give a brief recap of the things we did and then I'll just overwhelm you with pictures. That way you can either read it all and look at pictures or just skip right to the pictures!

We left Knoxville on Monday and came home on Monday. We arrived on Tuesday in London. We didn't really know what to do so we wandered around Kensington Gardens before we met some friends for drinks. It was an early night for us. Too much jet lag! Wednesday morning we got up and went on a sightseeing tour of London. We stopped by St. Paul's Cathedral (which was amazing and I lit a candle for my Gram), drove around Trafalgar Square and by Parliament and Westminster Abby, went to see the changing of the guards, and rode around a bit more. That afternoon we went to the Victoria and Albert Museum and then to Harrod's (completely overwhelming).

Thursday we got up and headed over to Shakespeare's Globe Theatre by way of Borough Market and piggies. After the Globe, where we saw King Lear being rehearsed in Belarusian, we went to the Tate Modern. We walked across the Millennium Bridge and then went to the Saatchi Gallery where we perused wonderful photographs. We had afternoon tea and then we went and did a little shopping. After that we went and had some dim sum for dinner. Friday we went on this tour called England in a Day. We hit Stonehenge, Bath, and Stratford-Upon-Avon. David is a huge Shakespeare fan, so he was thrilled with two Shakespeare events in two days! It was a long day and a little disappointing because we didn't have enough time to do much in either Bath or Stratford. But it was an experience!

Saturday we wandered in Notting Hill at the Portobello Road Market. We did shopping for ourselves and family. Then we wandered around near Big Ben, Parliament, and Westminster, and ended up at the ICA where we saw some video installations, walked through Trafalgar Square, and made our way to see a show called 'What the Butler Saw.' It was a very British play that was very entertaining! After the play we headed over to the Tower of London. It was beautiful all lit up at night.

Sunday, our last day in London, we went to the Museum of London. It was great. Better than expected. We grabbed our last pint at a pub, saw some pigeons doing an odd mating dance (or fighting over chicken bones) and took the obligatory tourist photos in red phone booths. This run down doesn't describe how much fun we had or how meaningful the trip was, but we had an amazing time. Really, everyone just wants to see the pictures, I know!

As an aside, since this is supposed to be a blog about fitness, I couldn't have done this trip two years ago when I was 35 pounds heavier. We walked an average of 20,000 steps every day that we were there. And we walked quickly. We also took a lot of stairs in the Underground. There's no way that I could have done that 2 years ago. I'm thankful that I am in better shape and that I was able to enjoy our trip with only minimal foot discomfort. I do sit at a desk for my job and my poor tootsies just aren't used to all that walking!

Now here's what you've been waiting for!
Kensington Palace

The Cask and Glass where we met Rebecca and Tim.

The Queens Arms - Dinner on Tuesday

Such a long day, but I actually really like this picture.

The best fish and chips we had.

Wild boar and apple sausages with mashed potatoes.

Two crazy kids.

Yes, it's a spiral staircase!

St. Paul's Cathedral reflected in a sphere.

St. Paul's.

A statue to commemorate those brave souls from WWII.

Honest Abe.

Clarence House, home of Prince Charles and Camilla.

A guard, obviously. He was giving us the side eye stair though.

St. James Park. Beautiful.

David in St. James Park. That's the London Eye over his shoulder.

Practicing for the Queen's Jubilee.

Changing of the Guards

Lunch. Yum!

Buckingham Palace

Big Ben


The Victoria & Albert Museum

I really love this shot of Big Ben for some reason.

Prince David. Well, he was dressing up.

One of the many windows decorated at Harrods for the Queen's Jubilee.

Peter Pan in Hyde Park

Tourist Trap. We didn't go in though.


The Globe Theatre. A Timeline of Shakespeare's Plays.

I really like this statue.

Crazy kids with Tower Bridge in the way background!

David outside the Globe.

Street Artist


The only picture really that someone else took of us on our whole trip.

Stonehenge from another angle.

The best pasty I've ever eaten (sorry, Mom.)!! I was just a bit excited!

We didn't go in, but here's a photo of the entrance to the Baths in Bath.

The Bath Cathedral

A jester down the street from Shakespeare's birth place.

That's the place, right there.

The man himself.

David and our 'England in a Day' tour guide.

Notting Hill - Portobello Road Market

My keepsakes.

I think I have a thing for Big Ben.

This is one of my favorite shots.

Two of my favorite guys.

Westminster Abby

Westminster Abby

Tower Bridge

Tower Bridge

David playing with exposure.

The old Roman walls that used to encircle the city of London.

A gladiator

David in a replica 12th - 13th century home at the museum of London.

Our last pint on vacation.

Obligatory phone booth photos!

We had to take a picture. The sign in London says y'all.
I hope you enjoyed the photos. It's not near as much fun as actually being there, but we had a blast. If you haven't been, go. It really is wonderful. I'm convinced we need to move there! We'll see what happens with that.