Monthly Archives: May 2012

Ready for Adventure? Peruuuuuuv it.

I’m leaving for Peru today!!! I can’t fall asleep because I’m too excited about my trip, so I figured I would blog about it.  Brian and I booked the trip so long ago, last week was the first time it actually sunk in that yes indeedy, I’m heading down to South America for the first time and exploring Peru.

I finally finished packing at around 12 a.m. I really hate packing, so I always procrastinate. I guess I’m hoping some elf will do it for me. The only thing I like about it is, I know I’m going on an exciting trip.

Anywho, I thought I’d share some info with you on our preparation for this trip.

We bought a trip voucher through Groupon for this travel company called Intrepid Travel. We spent $400 for $1000 towards a Central or South American trip. Since I’ve pretty much conquered Central America ( I’ve been to Costa Rica, Panama, Mexico, and Belize) Brian and I focused our trip on South America.  After visiting Belize and exploring Caracol and Actun Tunich Muknal, Peru won us both over mainly because we wanted to visit Machu Piccu. I mean look at this place.

machu Picchu

Haha found this pic while searching for photos of Machu Picchu. Just a guess, but I don’t think they’ll be at Machu Picchu next week. And good thing cause I was gonna wear that exact outfit.

Machu Picchu

But really, really look at this place.

Intrepid had a few Peru trip options. We picked an option that allowed us some down time in Cusco while still allowing time to visit Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley. I haven’t traveled with a travel company since my high school trip to France. It was nice to take some of the individual planning out of the equation. Intrepid booked our hotel for us, some of  our excursions, and will even provide some meals too. We are staying a little longer so we booked a couple other hotels for the rest of our stay.

Whenever I’m planning a big trip I purchase a Moon travel book. This time Brian surprised me with one on Peru and he bought one on Cusco for himself. These books are full of little nuggets of helpful info, from where to stay, where to eat, what activities to book, what to pack, and history about the country. And it’s honest too. The writers have no problem sharing which places to avoid and which places you should be a weary of.

Some of our side trips we have planned with the help of our moon book are:

  • White water rafting at Urabamba River. Brian’s never rafted before so this well be his first time.
  • Using our “boleto turistico” – a tourist ticket that gets us into 16 sights in and around Cusco and the Sacred Valley to further explore the museums in Cusco.
  • Exploring some Incan sites close to Cusco, including Sacsahuaman.

Other things I’ve been doing to prepare:

  • Avoiding all cute photos of guinea pig and trying not to think about my two pet guinea pigs I had growing up, Bert and Ernie. I will eat guinea pig. I will eat guinea pig

guinea pig

  • Buying adventure clothes, like my sweet new straw fedora hat.
  • Scouting out oxygen bars in Cusco. I really don’t want to get altitude sickness.
  • Playing emini meeny miney mo with which cameras to bring. I want to bring them all…but I know its excessive and the less I have to keep track of, the better.
  • And lastly daydreaming about all the fun I’ll have with Brian. He’s an awesome travel partner and I’m glad we’ll have many more stories to cherish and share when we get back.

Okay I’m gonna try to get some sleep and hopefully dream of my fun trip ahead.


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Maya Angelou 5K Race

My ankle is stillllll recovering from the sprain. I’m sure you’re tired of hearing about, but frankly I’m tired of having a kankle. Needless to say, I thought it would be healed by now.  It’s funny how fast your body  can get out of shape. Every run feels a little easier, but I still haven’t had that one great run. You know the one where your body and breathing are perfectly in synch; every step you feel more empowered. Those runs are what keep me coming back for more…maya angelou 5 k rock creek park washington d.c.

I’m trying my darnedest to get back into running shape though. To stay motivated, I’m trying to run a race whenever I can. A couple Saturdays ago me, Brian and about 200 runners ran the Maya Angelou 5k in Rock Creek Park. This small race benefited a big cause, the Maya Angelou Schools. These schools help students in Washington D.C. who have not succeeded in traditional schools. Small races are a nice change of pace, and they have a sense of community that can be easily missed in a race with 50,000 people.

Signing up for this race, I must admit, I was a little hesitant. The last race I ran in Rock Creek Park, the Caribbean Sounds Race 5k & 10k race, was a disaster.  They really were on island time and somehow forgot a major part of the race, THE 5K TURN AROUND. As much as I appreciated a few extra calories burned, I’m pretty sure that’s the first and last 4.6 mile timed race I’ll pay for Carribbean Sounds.

Alas, the lush scenic Rock Creek Park lured me in, and I decided to give it a second shot. Brian on the other hand was enchanted by the chance of another medal. He’s really building a collection now. Little medal whoreder.maya angelou 5k run washington d.c.

The race festivities began with a 5 minute boot camp warm up. I was just entertained watching Brian, so warming up was an added bonus.

There was much excitement surrounding the start of race with plenty of Maya Angelou students ready to run their hearts out. I mean when the race director said the magic word, those kids took off, running their hardest just like they were playing a game of tag. Their sprint lasted for about a minute, but their spirit was contagious and I tried to use their enthusiasm throughout the race.

The course at Rock Creek has its upsides and downsides-literally. For about a half mile of the race you run completely down hill, which is great and all, but then your last half mile is back up that same hill. I felt pretty good for most of the race, trying to keep a steady pace, saving enough energy for that uphill. My tactic for running hills is to run up them as fast as I can. They’re gonna be painful either way, so you might as well suck it up and get through it.

maya angelou 5k rock creek park washington d.c.

SHOUT OUT: I have to give a quick shout out to my girl TJ. I’m sporting her running hat in my rocking photo above.  I may not ran even close to my PR, but I did run like a mother. Check out her running and work out gear here.

I crossed the finish line with a time of 26:06 and later found out I placed 5th amongst the ladies . Definitely not close to my PR, but hey I’ll take it. Brian on the other hand, hit his PR of 20:04 and finished 2nd amongst the men.  He raked in another medal so he couldn’t have been happier. Oh did I mention he hit that time with a sprained ankle? Yes, somehow my sprained ankle was contagious. Guess that means I can’t use the ol’ sprained ankle excuse any more.  Geez, thanks Brian.

The next day I checked out Washington Running Report to hopefully register for some more local runs and guess who was featured on the front page? Brian!! And guess who didn’t register for another race? Me. Too distracted by my fast boyfriend.

washington running report Maya Angelou 5 K

My only complaint:

The health fair after made me realize just how immature I really am. Pretty much every booth was centered around safe sex and I really thought I could hold it together, but when I saw the personal lubricant and vagina model…I just had to walk away. Sorry Maya Angelou, but I just wasn’t prepared for that at 9:30 a.m.

If you liked this post you might like this one too:

Running at Teddy Roosevelt Island

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DC Yoga Week 2012

DC Yoga Week DC This week is DC Yoga Week. I just happened to stumble upon this while searching for upcoming events in DC for my work newsletter, so I thought I would share. Yoga studios all over DC (and a few outside of DC) are offering free and $5 classes. Awesome right? Yoga is one of my favorite work out routines, but it ain’t cheap.

I’m horrible about stretching so needless to say I won’t stretch for an hour unless someone is making me. Along with becoming a bendy pretzel, it also helps me to let the stress of the day go, centering myself on the positive. Here are more benefits of yoga if you’re interested. It’s from the Mayo Clinic, so it’s legit.

Gold’s gym (the gym I’m a member of) offers a few classes, but I guess I’m a bit of a yoga snob and just prefer the studio. Maybe it’s the fact that I can’t hear Zumba instructor screaming in the next room. Whenever I see a good deal on Living Social or Groupon, I try to snag it and the deals just don’t get better than this (free!).

This morning, I went and checked out Bikram Yoga Dupont. It felt so great to stretch for 90 minutes and sweat out all the toxins from the weekend. I swear it felt better cause it was free.

So if you’re a yoga snob like me, hope you can save a few bucks and check out DC Yoga Week. It lasts until this Sunday, May 20th.

Here’s the link to the website with all the studios that are participating, along with the schedule. They’re even holding yoga classes on the National Mall.

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So my little blog is one year old!! I fully intended to squeeze in 4 more posts to reach my 52 posts in 52 weeks goal, but work and life have been super busy lately. I think it had something to do with  spending Saturday socializing at Gold Cup (a horse race I will inevitably blog about) and Sunday recovering from Gold Cup, which didn’t leave much time to meet my goal. So cheers to 48 posts in 52 weeks!

Any who, I’m pretty proud of my little blog. It’s grown so much in the past year and I fully intend for it to continue to evolve with my gypsy soul.  In the next year, I’m hoping to blog even more, continuing to share my life, my adventures, and what makes me happy at that very moment.

So a big thanks to every one who’s checked out my blog in the past year!  I hope you come back for more, cause it’ll only get better from here.


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