Tag Archives: Shred

i finally learned to let it go.

Chickens, we’ve made it to Friday morning.

Which means the hard part is over, everyone.

Up this weekend:


That’s not to say I don’t have 8000 ideas of things to check off my list swimming in my brain (get some sun, plant some herbs, clean this house within an inch of its life, cook something crazy), but none of it’s down on paper and that, my friends, is the trick to all of this.

At least I think it is. Ask me Monday if it turned out to be chaos.

Last night, I continued my series of home work outs by doing the Shred for the second time in one week.

I even made it to level 3.

But it wasn’t pretty, you can bet on that.

Between that and the yoga I’ve been working on this week, my shoulders have surrendered, and my push ups look more like me flopping to the ground and then slowly picking myself back up again.

For 3 straight minutes.

I can’t wait until I get my contacts back into my eyes: running will be the first thing on the schedule. My shoulders can relax all they want.

And now, I’m off to make my last trek to work this week. It’s all smooth riding from here, chickadees, at least for the next 72 hours or so.



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Filed under Chicago, Did I really do that?, Reflections


Okay, chicks, I’m headed straight into the end of my week, with a day off hanging in front of me.

And with leftover enchiladas for lunch. This is a good start to things, I think.

And still I have a million items to complete, including getting through work, attending a happy hour, whipping my home into some semblance of order, packing, crafting the best 5k playlist ever, and waiting for my baby sister to get into town.

Perhaps “semblance of order” can be skipped at this point- maybe I can just turn the lights low and hope no one notices the dust.

This morning, I woke up to the sound of JW scurrying around, then heading downstairs to grab the paper.

Except he didn’t come back.

When I rolled over, I noticed it was only 5:00 AM.

Which meant he was running.

Cue the rain.

I decided to go back to sleep, but woke up yet another work related dream, so I hustled myself out of bed and spent the morning doing a little Shredding.

Not quite the swim I’d wanted to do, but hey, something’s better than nothing, right?

Plus, I could use the strength training- I love nothing more than avoiding that.

And now I’m off to run around in the hopes of getting to work in time for my 9:00 AM meeting.

Please tell me why people schedule 9:00 AM meetings.

I’ll never find an answer good enough.

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Filed under Chicago, Good times, Reflections

Ready to run.

Morning chicks!

Please, someone, tell me where the sun went? The forecast, it tells me it’s rain only until who.knows.when.

In other news, in the wake of race season sign up (I’ve got lots of running plans, my friends), and also, what with that wedding I have coming up, I’ve been trying to hang in the gym/outside running, swimming, and yesterday morning, Shredding.

Oh man, Jillian Michaels, I like it better when you’re yelling at other people on Biggest Loser and I’m just sitting on the couch, having snacks.

My ass was kicked before 7:00 AM.

I can only assume that in the long term, this is a good thing.


Also, I think maybe my beginner 3 lb weights need to be upgraded. Kettlebells have made me tough.

Or at least, tough enough to try 5 lb weights.

Up tonight is doing some running, hopefully in intervals, in an attempt to tell myself that I can, in fact, move faster than my short legs want to.

I have myself a 5k race on Saturday, you see. In which I get to finish in the concourse of Wrigley Field.

This is always cool, but also, a tight, dark space in which I am 95% sure I could trip and take out half of the neighborhood.

Better work on my balance.

And now, off to hang in my cubicle- headed toward the weekend, chickadees!

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Filed under Chicago, Good times, Near Disaster, Reflections, Running, Weather, Wrigley

And it’s back to the Plan

Morning, chickens!

It looks like the sun might shine today, and like it also might creep over fifty degrees.

All my fingers and toes are crossed.

No easy feat, without motor skills.

Yesterday, I was looking at my calendar, and I had this sudden bolt of realization that the Shamrock Shuffle is coming up in less than a month.

Have I been training?

I would say…not really.

I’ve been working out, but without a training plan, I’m pretty much all over the place.

A mess, if you will.

I need structure.

I need Mr. Higdon bossing me around.

Awhile ago, when JW had initially decided to run this race, and I had decided to throw my hat in the ring for another year, he put up an entire training calendar on the Gcal.

However, it’s really easy to uncheck “Training Plan” when it’s taking up valuable space on your calendar where you’d prefer to be writing “Dinner and Drinks.”

After my realization yesterday, I reinstated the calendar, and held my breath, wondering how far behind I’d fallen.

Turns out, my 5k runs I’ve been doing were just about where I should be.

I’m back on track.

Sort of, anyway. Paying attention to the track, anyway.

At the gym, I pounded out 3.5 miles, which was only a little bit more than I’ve been doing, but also a little bit of a struggle, as I insisted that I didn’t need any walking breaks.

And, I was right. I didn’t.

But they would have been nice.

My speed’s not quite where it needs to be, so I’m going to have to make quick (haha) work of this training plan and pick it up.

Luckily, I’ve still got three weeks to go.

After my run, and determined to stay on a path of success, I woke up this morning and did the Shred in an attempt to switch.it.up.

I reassured myself that I would just do Level 2, easing into Jillian’s psychotic ways.

But my remote malfunctioned and pointed itself right to Level 3.

I couldn’t go back.

Jillian was staring me down.

I’m hoping I can push my sore legs 2.5 more miles on the treadmill tonight.

And I’m also hoping to take to the streets if this weather really comes through.

Here’s to the beginning of the running season, chickadees!


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Filed under Chicago, Near Disaster, Reflections, Running

Coming at You

Ok, by the time this is actually published, it is Friday.

And I won’t see the beautiful city lit up at night for two whole days.

I don’t mind though, if we’re being honest.

Yesterday, I woke myself up earlier than normal and decided that I would get back into the Shred.

It’s been awhile.

Foolishly, I assumed that since I’ve been hitting up kettlebells for the past month or so, this would be a non-issue.

It turned out to be an issue.

That it had been awhile.

I made it through, but found out that it is much more difficult to do things correctly without a Russian literally moving your body into the correct positions if necessary.

I’m sorry I ever doubted that method as credible.

Anyway, at least I finished, thus completing the task of doing.physical.activity.

Then I hopped on a train to an eye exam, where I forked out $300 due to my near blindness.

Goodbye tax refund, sorry you couldn’t stay longer.

Tonight I’m heading into my birthday weekend, starting with dinner with JW at this Italian spot in Andersonville, recommended to me by my awesome hairstylist.

I love nothing more than a good recommendation. Movies, books, restaurants…tell me where to go and I will love you forever.

I also love nothing more than an Italian meal, so I’m hoping this is a good segway into a weekend of friends, pizza, and, gulp, turning 27.

Late 20s, I’m coming for you.

Have a good weekend chickadees!



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Filed under Chicago, Good times, Reflections, Things that are delicious

I like to move it, move it.

So yesterday at work was really fun and a little overwhelming. Lots of story telling, ring flashing, squagel eating (thanks CJ! 🙂 ), etc.

I didn’t get as much done as I would have liked.

I’m gonna let it go this time though.

But this morning, it’s back to the grind.

At least until I head to Mexico Saturday morning.

This morning I woke up and spent the morning with Jillian Michaels threatening my life.

A good way to start the day, I think.

My strategy at this point is as follows:

1. Spanx can take care of a lot of problem areas in a bridesmaids’ dress.

2. My arms and shoulders don’t fall into that category.

3. I shred and kettlebell until it’s go time.

I think I’ve got a pretty solid strategy in place.

Up tonight, more cleaning and packing (so far, I have simply thrown every dress I own into a suitcase, plus my bathing suits. I think this is a good start), trying to not eat all the tomato cream pasta I made last night (and took lots of pictures of, to show you, in the first couple steps, and then stopped because somehow I managed to lose my camera behind a dishtowel), harassing the library until they release my NINE books that are in transit and need to be in my paws, and taking a run with JD, the lovely bride to be.

Full plate, kids.

Good luck getting through Wednesday!

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A few things at the end of the week…

When I woke up this morning at 6:00 AM, it was so dark out that I checked every clock in my apartment to make sure there wasn’t some kind of strange, clock-busting error.

Turns out there wasn’t.

I resigned myself to staying awake, and spent some quality time with Jillian Michaels and her god forsaken Shred.

I wanted to skip it, but the facts are that I have less than one month exactly until I throw on a one shouldered, knee length dress and get in front of a couple hundred people for JD’s wedding, and I’ll need Jillian’s help looking my best.

Another thing this morning. This is really bothering me. And yes, I generally try and keep this little corner of my universe light, but I feel like some news items transcend it. And this one doesn’t have to be about politics or value sets or anything other than the fact that everyone needs to recognize that hatred in any form can only lead to violence, to sadness, to tragedy.

Just something worth thinking about on this October morning.

Today’s my dad’s birthday. Happy Birthday, Dad! Thanks for being funny and liking awesome music and talking about sports with me three times a week.

Is it time to go to Mexico yet? No? Just Atlanta? Fine.

I’m off to start my bittersweet Friday, since tomorrow holds only plane-flying and booth-setting up. I’ll catch you guys from Hotlanta!


Filed under Near Disaster, Reflections, This makes me crazy

Random items on a cool Thursday

You guys, I love this weather. It’s cool and sunny and I am no longer sweating myself to death every time I dare to leave the apartment.

Despite the nice weather though, I decided to take myself to the Y last night for some running.

Don’t ask me why. I’ve missed the Y, maybe?


Anyway, I was feeling pretty sore from my Shred incident on Tuesday, but since I lack common sense, I did not let that stop me and ran for about forty five minutes.

My quads are now on strike. I won’t be doing any exercising today.

Also, there was a distracting woman on the treadmill yesterday, mumbling “Yes! Yes! Yes!” as she ran, and also, clapping in time to the music on her iPod.

The clapping startled me, but I managed to stay firmly planted on my treadmill.

When I got home, I was near exhausted, but then, I was pleasantly surprised.

By these:

I love cookies.

Amy, my blog friend from over at Second City Randomness, was kind enough to send me some homemade peanut butter toffee chocolate chip cookies. She is awesome.

And so are her cookies.

I wasted no time, as you can see from how sweaty I am.

This is a frightening picture. I am aware.

Someone please explain to me why one of my eyes is always so squinty.

Anyway, I spent the rest of the night firmly planted on my loveseat, reading this:

I literally could not put it down. This one is as outrageous as the last. It also touches more on rebelling against the country’s dictatorship-like government, and it stirs up my rebellious, thirteen-year-old self.

If I haven’t convinced you to start the series, tell me what else I can do. You guys need to be reading these, because they are so quick, and so nutso.

I already have JW hooked, and as soon as I finished last night, the book went directly into his hands.

Yes, Wednesday nights are exciting in the Palluzzi-Wagenschutz household.

Up today is grabbing my bridesmaid dress for JD’s wedding, coming home after work (and NOT going to the gym. I have to keep reminding myself that I will likely die if I try to run again today), and catching up on some TV/It’s FOOTBALL SEASON.

So there’s that.

And now I’m off. Have a good morning, chickpeas!

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Filed under Good Reads, Near Disaster, Reflections, Running, Weather

Lethal Shredding.

First of all, let me please say that you cannot go anywhere in Chicago this morning without knowing that Mayor Daley has decided to retire.

Here comes what should be the most interesting fight to the finish of all time.

I’ve already read eight million profiles of political hopefuls who’d like to be the ones to take the reins from Daley.

But it seems it’s all speculation at this point, as at least a quarter of the contenders have expressed that really, they’re not contenders. In fact, they’re not even interested.

Like I said, things are about to get interesting around here. I’ll keep you posted in case you happen to not dwell in the Windy City.

In other news, last night, I decided to return to this:

I have a lot going on at work this week, and knew I wouldn’t be able to take off at 5:00, so I thought that this would be a quick alternative that I could feel good about.

I decided to do Level 2, because while it has been months since I’ve slipped this bad boy in my DVD player, I did just do a triathlon. I was in shape enough to take on Level 2 right away.

Except that struggling through the 25 minute workout, you wouldn’t be so sure that I had just done a triathlon.

You’d think maybe that I’d spent the last year on the couch.

Wheezing like a rhino, losing my balance as if I’d never stood on one leg before.

I finished it, and moved onto to reading Glamour and watching John Adams, but I’m feeling it this morning.

Jillian Michaels, I’m sorry that in my quest to complete the tri, I neglected strength training.

I promise to get back at it.

If you promise to quit abusing me in my living room.

And now, it’s off to my cubicle. And then back to the gym, to see if I can redeem last night’s performance.

Have a good one, chickadees!

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Filed under Did I really do that?, Near Disaster, Politics, Reflections

Back to School, Back to School…

Well, not for me.

Back to the office for me.

But for the Chicago Public Schools, it’s officially their first day.

And there’s a school outside of my apartment building.

For now, they sound excited.

And they should be. There’s nothing like a new school year to get you going. I only wish I could join them.

This morning I woke up surprised to feel a little sore, but then, blamed it on sitting still for so very long last night.

Not that today is going to be any more mobile from my cube, but perhaps unlike the Real Housewives, I’ll feel compelled to tear myself away from my computer screen to stretch my legs.

Tonight I’m going to make a grand return to Jillian and her god-forsaken Shred. And then maybe some Pilates. I’m feeling a little bit scatterbrained about working out at this point. I’m without a plan dictating my every move and muscle pull.

It’s a little weird to fly solo, but hopefully this week I’ll settle back in.

And next week I’ll fly to CO for a conference and eat my weight in bagels and other things.I.should.not.eat.

But that’s life chicks.

Have a good return to work this morning!

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