A Perfect Weekend and Plan For The Week

Happy Last Day of March Everyone ūüôā

I gotta tell you,¬†yes it’s always a bummer to wake up and start Monday morning — looking back on an amazing weekend tends to ease the pain just a bit.

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Ashley’s Perfect Weekend

Friday Night:

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The worlds BEST tortilla chips: Whole Foods homemade

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Good cold beer

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and a night with my BF, Leonardo.

{JK honey — but seriously. ¬†Leo, call me}

Saturday:

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20,000 feet plus on the slopes

A relaxing early evening in hotel including snacks + hot tub.

Then an evening out with friends until far too l ate with good food, good drinks, and good company.

{sorry I didn’t get pictures. ¬†i was too busy enjoying the evening. . . happens sometimes}

Sunday

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A perfect ski breakfast with lots of healthy fats, carbs and protein.

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A quick circuit workout followed by a few more hours on the slopes

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Tons of walks in the sunshine with the pup

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An evening with another good friend, Will.

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More peanut butter

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Lots of coconut water + lemon to rehydrate

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a homemade pizza night with the hubby

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With the final cap of the weekend being some experimenting in the kitchen.

This really was my perfect weekend, and yes I may have played and worked hard {and payed for it}, but my goodness it was an amazing weekend.

Zach and I went to bed right around 10 PM last night so by the time my alarm went off this morning, all of the rust from the weekend felt like it had been washed off.  Yes, I allowed myself to sleep in after an indulgent weekend.  BUT I did get in a good 20 minute yoga session, and have plans for an AWESOME outdoor run tonight to enjoy the weather.

Plan for the Week

I ended last week feeling strong and confident, and want to roll that into this week as well. ¬†Here’s my plan to do JUST that :).

  • Monday: AM yoga + PM run
  • Tuesday: AM Strength session
  • Wednesday: ¬†Speed work run
  • Thursday: Walk with the Pup
  • Friday: Hill/Interval treadmill run
  • Saturday/Sunday: SKI one day/Run one day

As always, I leave room for flexibility because, you know, life happens :).

Goals

I have a couple goals this week.

  • HYDRATE! ¬†Never be without water and constantly be sipping. ¬† This is always difficult for me — for whatever reason. ¬†I get full easily and when I drink a ton of water, I get a “water baby” and am miserable until it goes away {a water baby is that slushy belly you get after drinking lots of water}. ¬†With that said, I KNOW I feel better overall when I drink water, so I’m going to stick to it.
  • LESS PROCESSED FOODS: ¬†I have gotten back into a bar kick lately. ¬†Now, I’m not damning bars, but let’s just say the processed nature of most grocery store bars scare me. ¬†So, I know I need to chill out a bit. ¬†My plan for the week is to eat more real, natural foods — less prepackaged foods with ingredients I am not familiar with. ¬†I’m starting this plan off with homemade granola bars that I’ll be sharing with you all soon ūüôā
  • Continue the walks with Gus as much as possible!¬†Gus and I both enjoyed our evening walks, and I want to keep this trend up as long as the weather is cooperating. ¬†It’s great for digestion after dinner and just fresh air ūüôā

alright my friends, that’s all I’ve got for you today :). ¬†Hope you had a GREAT weekend and have a great Monday to start the week!

Question of the Morning: TELL ME ALL ABOUT YOUR WEEKENDS! ¬†Did you run/race? ¬†See friends? Tell me ūüôā ‚̧

Honeymoon Recap — Activities and Exercise

Today’s recap of our AMAZING Austrian honeymoon is going to be all about our activities and exercise in the mountains.

If you missed my first recap, be sure it check it out!

Let’s start with the nitty-gritty here. ¬†Zach and I were gone for 2 weeks (Saturday-Sunday…with a day added in London due to missing out connection). ¬†There were 3 days fully dedicated in there to travel, but the rest of the days Zach and I tried to make the most of our time in the mountains and enjoy outdoor activities. ¬†Hello 2 weeks of no gym?

Here’s how the activities looked:

  • 4 days of skiing
  • 2 days of running
  • 2 winter hikes
  • 1 day of snow shoeing
  • 2 yoga practices
  • 1 day of walking all over Munich (and exercising my liver with the great bier!)

4 days of skiing

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The skiing in Europe is VERY different than what I’m accustomed to here in the West. ¬† They have been having a tough season so their snow pack is minimal, to put it lightly. ¬†This was challenging for me because it was basically like skiing on a big plate of ice…very crowded plate of ice.

So yes, the conditions were tough.  But the views?  Out of this world.  The Alps are SO unique and provide breathtaking moments that literally catch you off guard.   I am hopeful that Zach will do a guest post and include a bunch of his photos from the SLR, because it was honestly like we were in heaven.

My favorite part of European skiing is just how large and vast the ski areas are.  We stayed in St Anton, but skied basically all of the neighboring towns on the same one lift ticket.  Skiing is really affordable in Europe in comparison to US, and you have SO much more terrain open to you.

Of all the areas we skied, I think we would both agree that Lech was our favorite but I wouldn’t complain any of them. ¬† Sure, skiing was a bit more stressful than I am used to, but I do wish I hadn’t gotten sick and was able to get a few more days under my legs.

2 days of running

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You know my heart has been with running for a long time — and of course that didn’t change while I was on my honeymoon. ūüôā ¬†I made a promise to myself to TAKE IT EASY ON THE RUNNING while I was gone after a long streak, but of course brought along my shoes in hopes that I’d at least get one or two runs while I was out there.

And that’s exactly what I did. ¬†Two days that Zach went skiing and I stayed behind, I laced up my shoes and hit the (very icy) roads. ¬†This was definitely a different experience for me. . . the first day I went about 6.3 miles and the second day I did about half that.

Now let’s get things straight here. ¬†St Anton is HILLY (like 300+ meters elevation change in less than a mile. ¬†That’s almost 1000 ft). ¬†This provided some GREAT downhill running, but some serious uphill WALKING. ¬†On these runs, I’d run as much as I could, but walk the drastic uphills. ¬†For example: my 6.3 mile run day ended up being a little over 80 minutes. ¬†My 3 mile run day was closer to 35 I believe. . . context.

I was also moving a lot slower thanks to melting snow and ice. ¬†But to be honest, I wasn’t concerned about my times. ¬†I was just enjoying being outdoors and exploring this amazing town. ¬†I was running on my own in an area I wasn’t familiar with, so unfortunately I wasn’t able to explore very much, but the area that I was able to go and feel comfortable in was beautiful non-the-less.

You know running makes me a happy lady — and that was absolutely the case with these two runs. ¬†I finished feeling strong and full of beautiful mountain air. ¬†Nothing like it. . .

Never travel without my running kicks

2 Winter Hikes

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The only other time I have ever really hiked in winter conditions was 4 years ago, also with Zach and also in Europe. . . go figure ;).  You all know I love hiking, but there was something about all the snow and the cool air that made it that much more enjoyable.

Our first hike was actually more like a snowy hilly walk. ¬†We walked through town and then followed a cross country trail for probably 6-7 miles. ¬†It wasn’t rocky or too strenuous, but it was our first full day and figured we didn’t want to tackle too much on exhausted bodies.

Our second hike was a short but good one. ¬† The town of Lech that I mentioned in the skiing section was our favorite for more than one reason. ¬†One really unique element of the town was that it was actually two towns on top of each other. ¬†There’s Lech, and then Oberlech (or over lech) that is just a few hundred meters directly up the mountain.

You can easily ski between the towns, but they also offer a hiking trail that takes you directly from one to the other.  At the end of the trip Zach and I took a bus out to Lech (instead of skiing and busing like we had been), and hiked between the towns.  It was honestly one of my favorite days and included a lot of more relaxed outdoor time and good food :).

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The winter hikes aren’t rock scrambling, and this trip it wasn’t through feet of snow (like it was in Zermatt in 2010). . . but the snow definitely added a fun new element to hiking!

One Day of Snow Shoeing

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Zach and I are goobers and got each other snow shoes at the end of the year last year (for his birthday and for me at Christmas). ¬† Zach’s are pretty high tech and can easily be taken out in the back country, which he plans to do.

We knew right away that we wanted to break them out while we were in Austria, so they made the hike overseas with us! ¬†We tackled an 8k course for our first day of show shoeing, and I don’t know if it was because I was fighting getting sick or what, but MAN I was exhausted after.

There wasn’t too much snow on the trail, so Zach and I would jump up on the side of the road and hike in the 4 or 5 foot snow walls. ¬†That was challenging, but it at least made the snow shoes work like they were supposed to.

Yes it was tough, but I look forward to breaking them out again in the Spring on early season hikes here in Colorado!

2 Yoga Practices

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Man oh man.  To say Zach and I were sore during all these activities is an understatement.  To help balance this, I made sure to take some time and dedicate it to yoga and stretching.  I did a couple of my favorite at home practices and both times felt like a new woman after!  Now if only we had found a studio to try in town, how cool would that have been?

One Day Walking All Over Munich

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It was important to Zach and I that we had one, settled home base the entire time that we were on our honeymoon — but that doesn’t mean we didn’t want to explore. ¬†We both agreed that we wanted to do at least one day trip, and Munich was an easy winner for both of us!

We had plans to take the first train out, but that was when we both started getting sick so we took one out 2 hours later and ended up getting in about 1 hour later right about lunch time.  Zach, being the smart traveler that he is, immediately picked up an English travel guide of Munich and headed out on a walking tour of the city!

We were only there for 6 or 7 hours and the weather was kind of crappy but boy did we have a blast! Good thing we both wore our comfy shoes for that walking tour ūüôā

I absolutely loved all of my activities in Austria and just wish I could have done more. ¬† I absolutely believe that the best way to explore a new place is on foot (or ski, or show shoe). ¬†I mean come on, you’ve gotta balance the German beir and sausage somehow, right? ūüėČ

 

Honeymoon Recap: The Food

So the first honeymoon recap is going to be picture heavy and probably  make you drool.  Consider yourself warned.  I know I mentioned that I would do my exercises and activities first, but I am too excited about the food to delay!

I have only been to Europe 3 times (2 times that I remember) but man-oh-man I ALWAYS love my experiences with European food culture, everything about it.  I mean come on, basically everything is served with french fries, and the bread is GREAT.

I don’t even know where to begin with this one, except to say that I almost wish I had taken MORE pictures. ¬†I think I took about 100 photos all said and done through out the 2 week vacation, but I could have taken 1000. ¬†I tried to live in the moment and not really concern myself if I forgot to photograph something. ¬†Including the grub. ¬†So — with that said, let’s tackle my first honeymoon recap!

The Food

I know this is kind of an odd place to begin — but Zach and I were surprised with an upgrade to business class for our flight over to London (one good thing about Zach’s travels). ¬†That meant for our 8 hour flight, we would be served two meals AND have access to lounges. ¬†Hello, awesome.

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That meant the travel started in champagne style. ¬†Free champagne and espresso to be enjoyed in the first of 3 lounges we’d visit through our day of travels.

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We also ordered a chicken sandwich to split (yes it was breakfast, I was hungry) and then snacked again in the Dallas airport lounge.   The lounges in the states included a bunch of free snacks, like you see on the right, but you could order full meals like our sandwich at cost.

Where it REALLY got cool was on the plane, business style.

As we were seated we were given a menu that looked straight out of a 5 star restaurant.

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Ok, maybe I’m exaggerating a little bit, but come on, this is dinner on a plane!

You were given 2-3 choices for each course for a 4 course meal. ¬†Yup, that’s right. ¬†Three courses.

I started with a simple green salad course and an heirloom tomato and buffalo mozzarella starter.

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The salad was actually not too simple, and included roasted veggies and parm shavings.

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The starter was also really good, the pesto dressing made it. ¬†My only complaint was the cheese didn’t have too much flavor, but I say that often with moz cheese.

For my entree I went with scallops, which was a risky choice on my part but I wasn’t too hungry after eating all day (basically), and knew I wouldn’t overeat the scallops.

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I shared my entree with Zach but was impressed. ¬†The scallops weren’t overly fishy at all and the potatoes were delish!

And no meal is complete without dessert, even in the air!

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A DELICIOUS pumpkin cheesecake that left me overly full but was totally worth it. ¬† To be honest this was probably the best treat I had all 2 weeks (Europe didn’t impress me with their sweets I guess, but that’s OK. They made up for it).

After that huge meal Zach and I laid back and relaxed with some movies and reading.

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Ahhh flying in style.

Breakfast was simple,  croissants and bacon sandwiches offered.  I went with the fruit. . .

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And a mini croissant that was eaten before finding a camera.  Zach and I also tried one of the bacon sandwiches, but it was basically just a piece of ham on stale-ish bread.  Nothing to write home about.

Overall, I was EXTREMELY impressed with the food while traveling, but on my way TO Europe and back home.  I may never be able to travel coach again!

Ok — moving on now that we are actually in Europa :). ¬†Let’s start with breakfasts.

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While it may not seem exciting, our breakfasts each morning were pretty much the same and in house. ¬†There was a bakery in St. Anton that would deliver directly to our apartment, so we had fresh baked bread any morning we had it. ¬†Hello, awesome. ¬† Zach’s favorite was this wheat bread that was light and seedy.

So every morning was some kind of bread, with fruit (cantaloupe and blueberry normally).  The cantaloupe from the local grocer was amazing.  I think we went through at least 4 during our two weeks.

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I also enjoyed yogurt and or nuts many mornings as well to get in that protein. ¬†Their yogurt was a bit higher in fat than what I’m used to here in the States, but that just reminded me how much we rely on low fat or low calorie, even when we don’t realize it! The yogurt was delicious, fair priced, and never bothered by stomach being full cream.

I LOVED the fresh baked goodies every morning for breakfast, it is always a highlight when I’m in Europe. ¬†Some mornings we would indulge in chocolate¬†croissants or donuts, let’s be honest. ¬†But somehow I must have always eaten them before they found a camera. ¬†Upps. ¬†

Lunches

Most of our lunches were really on mountain, apres ski snacks.

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 Let me tell ya how good a big plate of pomme frittes (french fries) and/or sausages were after a good day of skiing.

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Oh…and beer. ¬†Lots of beer after skiing.

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We did find one spot downtown St. Anton that was outdoors, and had heaters. ¬†Hello. ¬†We went there a couple times (you know it’s good when it’s a repeat on vacation) and always ordered the same snack.

An anti-pasti platter that I always enjoyed with a white or rose wine.  Ahh this was delish.

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It was so cool to be able to just sit outside on the patios and enjoy after working so hard on the slopes. ¬†These were some of my favorite moments of the trip — and the food never dissapointed. ¬† Think good bar food :). ¬†Always a good cold light beer and heavy food — good balance ūüôā

Dinners

Dinners are where we liked to switch it up the most. ¬† ¬†Some of the best nights I’ve had in a long time were us just hanging out and enjoying each others company at a new to us restaurant. ¬† There was one bar that we went to multiple times before dinner and after skiing. ¬†We loved their potato wedges and beer, they had awesome American live music, and the staff was super friendly. ¬†Those were my favorite nights I think :).

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The perfect way to warm our tummies up for dinner. ¬†Some nights we’d go to the bar and then cook in. ¬†Salads or anti-pastis normally.

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And then of course, we had our evenings where we just went out on the town.   This is where it got special :).

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Our first night on the town was at a little tapas spot named Bodega. Like many restaurants in St. Anton, it was really tiny but had so much character.  I only got a picture of our drinks and first dish, but know that it was great.

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Bacon wrapped dates and mushrooms. ¬† I was surprised by how prevalent mushrooms were in St. Anton, maybe because I had just read Omnivore’s Delimma and Pollan discusses them in depth, but man they were good.

We also went to a fancy Italian spot one night on accident (after the bar). . . not bad, but this was the meal I actually got sick after. ¬†I don’t think it had anything to do with the food, I think it was coming…

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The pizza had artichoke hearts, olives and mushrooms on a very light and thin crust.  VERY good.  I was also surprised by how prevalent Italian spots were all over Austria . . . who knew!

The day we traveled over to Lech/Overlech was actually another one of our favorite (Italian) meals.  This was the day after my stomach bug issue, so I was just happy to tackle real food.  I started the day with cantaloupe,  then hiked a bit and shared a savory crepe (corn, peas, ham and tomato sauce. Awesome) with Zach.  Man I was excited to tackle food.

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We randomly were recommended a cute Italian spot a little off the beaten path and enjoyed a 2 hour meal starting with bruchetta and ending with pasta for both of us. ¬†I don’t know if it was because I was feeling better or what, but this pasta was amazing.

We also took a day trip over to Munich in the middle of our honeymoon and enjoyed some legit Bevarian fair.

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An onion and bacon “tart”

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And amazing homemade raviolli.

And of course, no trip to Munich would be complete without a stop at the HB.

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That was a lotta beer. . .

My absolute favorite meal of the trip deserves an entire post in itself, and I will definitely give it that.  But here is a preview of our final night in Austria.

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We treated ourselves to a very nice Valentine’s dinner of Austrian fondue.

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Words cannot describe.

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Ahhh I miss Austrian food.

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As I mentioned, there wasn’t too much in the way of sweets on this trip (minus the morning pastries). ¬†We enjoyed a lot of peanut M&M’s and some chocolate bars. . .and one tart that we picked up at the grocery store. ¬†But overall, I could tell dessert isn’t huge in the culture. ¬†Wine and good chocolate…that’s fine by me!

And that, my friends, were the highlights of my eats during the honeymoon.  I want to write another post on the differences in food culture that I experienced while there. . . so keep posted!