Saturday, December 27, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
My last post was written at JFK Ariport in NYC....I got out of the north right before the crazy snow started, phew! I'm now enjoying the sunny and 78 degree weather in Florida.
This morning I headed out to do a nice 7 mile run along the river in Rockledge. Riveside Drive is an absolutely beautiful place to run (It's actually the route of the Space Coast Marathon). It's lined with ton of beautiful historic houses, lush oak trees heavy with spanish moss, and tropical palm trees to remind me why I love Florida. The only problem is the heat and humidity...but, I can't really complain. At least I'm not stuck in a blizzard!
Thursday, December 18, 2008
7 Days until Christmas, 3 days until Hanukkah!
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
8 Days until Christmas, 4 days until Hanukkah!
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
9 Days until Christmas, 5 days until Hanukkah...
Still shopping for Holiday gifts? Here's my eco-chic athlete's gift guide.
Klean Kanteen with Sports Top
The Klean Kanteen is one of my favorite practical things. It's a sturdy, simple re-usable water bottle made from stainless steel, which means it is completely BPA free. It also keeps water cold and crisp, and doesn't spill or sweat easily. The sport's top is perfect if you're on the go, and they also sell a bike cages for cyclists who want to ride green.
It comes in steel, pink, black, green, blue, orange and brown.
More eco-chic gifts coming tomorrow!
Monday, December 15, 2008
While holding a particularly strenuous chair pose in my yoga class last week, I got to thinking about what yoga can do for us in these troubling economic times. No doubt, it is an excellent form of exercise; but even more than that, it focuses our minds and helps relieve stress.
Yoga is the ancient Indian discipline that seeks to unite the mind and body. As America’s waistband expands and our wallet contracts, more people are looking for affordable exercise options. A survey conducted by CNN in 2004 found that 73% of Americans find money to be their number one stress factor. Imagine what that number must be in the midst of our current financial meltdown.
Using yoga to relive some of this money-related stress and to vary your exercise routine is a wonderful option, but the problem for students like me, is that yoga studios in New York City often charge over $20 a class. That certainly is not an anxiety reliever! Fortunately, there is an option for those who want to Zen-out without worrying about burning a hole in their pocketbooks.
Yoga to the People is a fantastic studio in Manhattan’s East Village that is a completely donation based. (I absolutely love this studio and encourage everyone in NYC or visiting NYC to try a class.) This means that they ask participants to only give what they can – from $1 to as much as $20 or more if you’re in the position to do so. Located on the historic St. Marks Place, the studio teaches an upbeat form of Viyassa Flow Yoga. The instructors are all young and enthusiastic, and the classes are packed full of students and young adults.
“Can you find inner peace while someone’s toes are in your face?” asked my instructor, Emily, during my Sunday afternoon class. “If you can relax here, you can do it anywhere!”
The hour-long session that features an upbeat mix of modern music, ends with an inspiring quote and the Tibetan Singing Bowl, which add an eerie calm to the room. I encourage anyone in New York City even slightly interested to try a class. But make sure to arrive a few minutes early, the room fills up!
Yoga to the People
St. Marks Place near 3rd Ave
(illustration by Christina Coradin for w27 Newspaper)
Monday, December 8, 2008
Despite the good news we were all exhausted, so the meet was sort of a cool down from the previous day (although several of my team mates swam amazing times!)
Friday, November 28, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Here is Gwen KICKING ASS in the 500 Free. She won. They combined the men's and women's heats. She beat the guys. She rocks:)
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Just a quick post today! I reached a "mile"stone by completing one of the longest runs I've done yet. Yesterday I did a very enjoyable 10 mile run in Central Park. Ahh, I absolutely love fall. The weather was perfect, about 40 degrees and partly cloudy. I'm pretty spoiled when it comes to running conditions: I 'd prefer not to run in the heat, the cold, the rain, too early, or too late. (I do it anyway, because that's what runners do!) But I love when conditions are perfect like yesterday!
I kept my pace around 9 minute miles, which felt great. I think if I keep this up, I'll be able to run around 8:30 minute miles for my first Half Marathon in a few months. I don't have a running watch (hint, hint mom;) so I use the CNN Building's huge clock to estimate my time! A bit archaic, but I actually like to round the corner of the bottom of the park and see the screen through the trees telling me I came in under my goal!
(No, that's not my picture, but it basically looked like that. Glorious, right?:)
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Yesterday, as I was walking through Union Square Park, I saw a massive electronics recycling collection site. It got me thinking about just how much of what we use we never think to recycle. Something like a piece of paper may make it into the recycle bin, but e-waste, electronics that are at the end of their use, is a growing segment of our landfills.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Swimming isn't the first thing that may come to mind when you think of a fashion college. But this year, after the hard work of a few students and a willing athletic director, a team was born! The response was overwhelming: over 60 students initially signed up for try-outs. The number has since whittled down to around 20 swimmers. After securing a dedicated and super-cool coach, the team was complete.
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Monday, November 3, 2008
Here's a last minute picture from the most recent show. Enjoy! And don't forget to vote!
I thought I would wait until election week to bring you all a recap of my campaigning efforts. A friend of mine, Kate Goldwater, is an environmentally conscious fashion designer with an adorable store in the East Village called AuH2O. She has been selling her line of Barack Obama merchandise for a few months now, and I've been lucky enough to model in several fundraising fashion shows for the campaign.
Kate's clothes are all one of a kind pieces, made from recycled materials like second hand shirts and dresses. The Obama line includes shirts, skirts, shorts, and tops, all with the obama screen printed logo; plus jewelry from Kate and a few other designers. Her Obama Fashion shows were also the subject of a CNN iReport documentary which was a finalist in the iReport Film Fesitval. You can watch the video here: http://www.ireport.com/docs/DOC-112855
If you haven't already voted absentee or early as some states allow, get out and vote tomorrow!
Sunday, November 2, 2008
I was up early this morning to watch the New York City Marathon run through the streets of Manhattan. The day was fantastic for a marathon, a little cool and windy, but clear skies and sun greeted runners later in the day. I headed uptown to watch the race from first avenue. A friend and I had brunch outside along the course which offered us a great view of the runners. It is always so inspiring to see a race like this. I can't wait to run my first marathon (one day...)
Congratulations to everyone who completed the race!
Marilson Gomes Dos Santos 2:08:43
Paula Radcliffe 2:23:55
Read my blog about the marathon's recycling efforts here:
Friday, October 31, 2008
Halloween is by far my favorite holiday. But it really does represent one of America's worst habits: eating a lot of things we know are bad for us.
So this year, I was delighted to find that CLIF Bar, a fantastic earth-friendly energy bar company, is selling limited time Spooky S'Mores flavored Z Bars for kids.
CLIF Bars are my absolute favorite energy bars. They are low-fat, organic and contain no trans fats or high fructose corn syrup and give me a great boost before or after my workouts. The kid's Z Bars are just as earth and body friendly, great for active kids (or even the young at heart active adult!) I am going to be chewing on these all weekend to celebrate Halloween in a healthy, green way.
What are you doing to Green your Halloween?
Sunday, October 26, 2008
What a beautiful morning for a race! Rain, thunderstorms and howling wind rolled through the city last night, but by dawn skies were clear and the air was still. I always make a point to eat breakfast at least 3 hours before race time, so that means I was up around 5:15 making oatmeal and stretching sleepily.
Once in Central Park I was amazed at how many runners were at the starting area. Seriously, thousands of runners were all gathered around the Poland Springs tents, listening to live music and warming up for the run. I was happy to find that there were several recycling bins in which to dispose of the discarded Poland Springs bottles. And the race's little souvenir was a pair of green shoe laces, made from recycled Poland Springs bottles that say "Please Recycle." At least they're making an effort!
We gathered in our corrals as star of Broadway's Spamalot and NBC's Lipstick Jungle (his name escapes me, and google has failed me. Does anyone know his name?!) sang the national anthem. He not only ran this race, but will also be running in the NYC Marathon next weekend.
Central Park was absolutely beautiful, it is always such a pleasure to run there. But the thousands of other participants made it quite crowded...at the beginning I really had to navigate. I accidentally bumped into al least five people and several returned the favor.
When I don't listen to music, I like to have a little mantra going in my head for each mile. I don't let myself think about the next mile at all. I focus on the one I'm running!
My Mantra for each mile:
0-1: Let's go! This is easy! You ARE a morning person. (This is a lie. I am not really a morning person.)
1-2: Wow! Loving those downhills!
2-3: Welcome to the East Side, hello sun. Aren't you glad you're wearing sunglasses?
3-4: You are prepared for this race!
4-5: One more mile, why not make it a fast one?
I finished well within my goal (between 40:00 and 45:00 minutes) at 41:11. I was 1,906 overall (out of 6,472 finishers) 48th in my age group (out of 256 female 20-24 finishers). My average pace was an 8:14 mile. Post-race I was rewarded with a delicious New York apple and a chocolate chip bagel.
Here are some pictures of race day!
Thursday, October 23, 2008
It's time for another adventure in advertising! This series of Puma ads, located in the West 4th Street A,C,E subway station, harnesses the undeniable power of Ussain Bolt, olympic gold medalist and record breaker.
If any of you watched the olympics, I'm sure you saw Bolt's record breaking sprints and casual attitude. I must admit, I thought he seemed a bit pompous; I mean, he jogged to the finish line! But these ads really take a different look at him, which I found kind of charming.
Monday, October 20, 2008
While on my quest be become a greener person, I have given up buying bottled water all-together. I carry water in a reusable Klean Kanteen bottle made from stainless steel. 90% of empty plastic water bottles end up in landfills as trash, even though they are perfectly recyclable. Also, studies show that bottled water is no cleaner that tap water. In some cases the plastic has actually been shown to contaminate water even more. On top of all of that, bottled water is 19,000 times the cost of tap water! How can we justify spending that?!
My system works perfectly well: I re-fill my Klean Kanteen and sweetly encourage others to do the same. The dilemma came when I revisited the New York Road Runners website to confirm my registration for the 5 Mile NYC Marathon Kickoff race in Central Park next weekend. The event is sponsored by one of the largest bottled water manufacturers in the USA, Poland Springs. The partnership makes sense for NYRR: Poland Springs will supply thousands of bottles of water to hydrate thirsty runners after the race.
But how can I strive to be green and still take place in this race? Should I drop out in protest? Run the race and risk feeling like a hypocrite?
I finally resolved to run the race. After all, I am also trying to become a better athlete and this experience will only help my training. I decided though, to contact the NYRR and make sure that there will be recycling bins at the finish area for the discarded plastic bottles. It is one little thing I can do to ensure the recycling of perhaps thousands of plastic bottles.
Here is an excerpt form the email I sent NYRR:
..... I am signed up to run in the October 26 Poland Springs Marathon Kickoff and could not be more excited to take part. However, I wanted to contact you to make sure that there will be adequate recycling receptacles at the race's finish. Since the event is sponsored by a bottled water company, I am sure there will be a great deal of discarded plastic bottles. We all know that disposing of plastic bottles in the trash is extremely wasteful. Current statistics suggest that as much as 90% of plastic bottles end up in landfills as trash. I hope that you have already anticipated this issue and that the runners will find a place to recycle our bottles after the race. Thank you and I look forward to running this weekend!..........
Is there more I can do? Did I make the right choice?
Saturday, October 18, 2008
How cute are these?! If you bike often, you know it can really help to have some padding between your tush and the seat. These are the cutest biking underwear you’ll find, and they are really eco-friendly. Made from 70% bamboo and 30% organic cotton, they come in men’s boxer style and the women’s style shown above. Bamboo is great for sports because it is naturally soft and breathable. (In case you can't see well in the photo, the back says "Cycle More.")
Visit www.greenknickers.com for these and more eco-chic underwear!
If you’re a biker you already know that it’s a fantastically green alternative to carbon-emitting automobiles. But there are still ways to make your hobby even better for the environment.
Recycle your tires and tubes! Bikes can go through tires remarkably quickly. You may not even think of it, but recycling tubes can save a lot of landfill space. If you get your spares fixed at a bike shop, make sure they recycle. If they don’t encourage them to do so, and ask to have your old tubes so you can recycle them.
Fun Fact: If 1 in 14 Americans recycled their old tubes and tires every year, it could pave the route of the Tour de France!
If you are in the market for a new bike (lucky you!) choose a steel frame over an aluminum frame. Though steel tends to be heavier, it is much more eco-friendly because it can be produced using some recycled materials while aluminum frames must be made new, requiring much more energy. And, even when steel frames aren't made from recycled materials, it's production still uses less energy.
Buy a Cycloc Bike Rack. They’re a little pricy, but they’re made from 100% recycled plastic. They’re also a very chic design, and a great space saver.
Pick a bike helmet made of materials that can be recycled. Then, when you’re done with it, recycle the helmet!
Bike during the morning, especially if you live in an urban area like I do. This is when pollution levels are lowest. It’s just good for you!
(Some of these tips can be found in The Green Book, by Elizabeth Rogers and Thomas M. Kostogen.)
Thursday, October 16, 2008
As you may or may not know, I'm an advertising major and am always scoping out the billboards and busses around the city for great, creative ads to fuel my imagination. I love ads that really speak to the consumer, ones that relate on a truly personal, "I know you" type of level.
Monday, October 13, 2008
Yesterday I joined fourteen other bona fide city dwellers for a challenging hike up and around Schunemunk Mountain. The mountain, which is located a little over an hour outside the city, offers absolutely stunning views of the Hudson River Valley and the Catskill Mountains. The name Schunemunk means “excellent fireplace” in the Lennie Lenape Indian language. (This tribe lived in a village along the mountain before the Europeans arrived in the area).
Our group met up with Outdoor Bound guide, Kirk, at 8am on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Outdoor Bound is a wonderful company based in Manhattan that leads day (and some longer) trips to various hiking locations around the northeast. I’d recruited a friend, Bianca, to join me for the nine and a half-mile challenge. After fueling up with soy lattes from Starbucks we were headed out for a full day in a place not only lacking coffee shops, but also bathrooms, running water, and other modern conveniences who’s absences make so many urban oriented people cringe when they hear the word “hike.”
The day couldn't have been more beautiful. In the early fall morning, fog covered the hills and roads on our drive to the country. It was a crisp 55 degrees when we began our trek, but by mid-day had warmed to a blissful 73. Not a single cloud hung in the sky, which seemed to make the mountain look even more majestic.
The hike itself was fantastic in its challenge. Rocky paths and steep rock walls offered a rugged workout, and a welcome change from my normal training routine. The highlight for me was definitely climbing up a 25-foot almost-vertical wall of rock to reach the next peak. My legs are still sore! The group chatted easily, mostly about jobs and life, but also about the beauty of the nature we were experiencing. The fall leaves have just begun to change and some of the colors are simply stunning.
Hikers are some of the greenest people around, and we practiced the “leave nothing behind” philosophy (which includes taking even things like apple-cores that technically could disintegrate, just to make sure no mark is left). Keeping the trails clean and litter-free promotes not only the health of the earth, but also encourages hikers to come back and use the resources nature affords us.
Being out in the natural world reminds me even more of why the environment is a worthwhile investment. The though of losing even an acre more of our precious planet to human error and irresponsibility is unthinkable.