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la la land.

2 Jul

After a whirlwind weekend in SF, I was overdue to get re-acquainted with my home, good ol’ Los Angeles, this past weekend.

It kicked off on Thursday with dinner with 4/5 my law school posse at Toscanova in the Century City Mall. The pizza was delicious, but with everyone’s different eating styles we ended up looking like we ordered the big kids’ version of a kid’s meal.

kids’ meal status.

After dinner, we saw Moonrise Kingdom. It was quirky and weird, but also hilarious. I loved it.

Friday featured a trek out to the Chavez Ravine for my friend A.K.’s birthday to see the Dodgers lose ten-nothing to the Mets. Boo.

super dog + garlic fries.

No trip to Dodgertown is complete without some solid Dodger eats. And Friday night fireworks to get us in the mood for the 4th of July.

I got up bright and early on Saturday to pick up Whitney for a Malibu-filled day. First, we hiked to Escondido Falls – a short but challenging hike! Some of the rocks even had ropes you had to hold onto in order to hoist yourself up.

It was gorgeous and I totally recommend this hike.

We stopped at Malibu Kitchen for some sammies to take to the beach…

And headed to my favorite little pseudo-private beach in Malibu Colony.

On Saturday night, I met up with Aviva, Armita, and Aviva’s friend Kyle for the Eat. See. Hear. outdoor screening of Zoolander at Paul Revere Middle School in Brentwood.

If you know me, you know that Zoolander is one of my favorite movies (of all time) and that I quote it incessantly. (“Lucky for you no one I know reads your little TIME magazine or whatever it’s called.”)

I chowed at one of the food trucks – these are the Fingerling Potatoes and the Blackened Chicken sliders from the Vizzi truck. Pricey but they were both thebomb.com.

On Sunday, I got in a workout and ended the evening with dinner with my parentals on Larchmont Blvd. I have lots of posts on the way – my thoughts on taking a breather from oh-so-many IPAs, a fun Fourth of July 10k on the way, some recent workout reviews, etc.

Until then, and to keep up with my OCD tendencies, here are last week’s “hopscotch” workouts:

  • Monday: 4.52 mi. run + CorePower Yoga 
  • Tuesday: NROLFW 3A + 2 mi treadmill shakeout run
  • Wednesday: Cardio Barre
  • Thursday: 3 mi. run (AM)
  • Friday: OFF
  • Saturday: 4.2 mi hike (Escondido Falls) + 3.78 mi. run (PM)
  • Sunday: Spin

If you made it all the way here, I dare you to answer one of these:

What’s your favorite addition to your workout routine?

Do anything fun or funky this weekend?  

Favorite Zoolander quote? 

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long overdue.

17 Jun

I need to get back in action in terms of blogging. So much has happened since I blogged last week!

I had an eventful second week of work – the jury trial I have been watching came to an end on Thursday in an anti-climactic hung jury. This week was also fun outside of work too, and I was insanely busy.

On Monday, after my gym workout, I tried a new-to-me yoga place with Whitney called CorePower Yoga in West LA. On Mondays, they have a free, open class that left me super sweaty and yet relaxed. I quickly became a fan and am going to try and make it here more often, and probably do a full workout-review of this place at some point.

Tuesday night featured a trip to the Chavez Ravine for a Dodger game with Aviva and her parents at Dodger Stadium! I have been a Dodger fan from a young age, and try to make it to a few games every season. This was an exciting 5-2 win over the cross-town rivals, the Angels, which was awesome. I also scored a Mike Scoscia bobble-head! Aviva and I enjoyed the Dodger game classic of Dodger dogs and beer.

america’s pastime.

On Thursday, I met up with my Aunt Melinda and Uncle Casey for dinner in Pasadena at La Grande Orange Cafe. They were in town for a short stint and it was so nice to see them. We each had a drink in the bar before dinner – I went with the local Point the Way IPA from Glendale.

i have literally never met an IPA i didn’t LOVE.

My Aunt and I each ordered the Short Rib tacos for our entree which were delicious, and we shared the deviled egg app which was spot-on.  The service was great – we scored some free English muffins on our way out, as well as incredible salted chocolate chip cookie. (Our server was CJ in case you want to make a special request!) My uncle didn’t love his chicken and cinnamon roll duo, but overall I think this is a pretty solid option for lunch or dinner in the ‘dena.

deviled eggs!

After dinner, I coaxed Casey and Melinda to get frozen yogurt with me at 21 Choices. My roommate introduced me to this place a few yeas ago and I have been fanatical ever since. It’s like Cold Stone – you pick a yogurt and various mix-ins – allowing you to get creative. I went with a suggested creation – the “oatmeal cookie” which consisted of vanilla yogurt, cinnamon, cookie dough, and granola. Thank goodness they have a “tres small” size or else I would have keeled over from fullness.

My judge’s courtroom was “dark” on Friday so I got an unexpected day-off which was pretty sweet. I decided to take it relatively easy and just do things I wanted to do that I normally can’t. My first stop was Urth Cafe for a coffee.

Next on the agenda was Runyon Canyon Yoga. If you live in LA this is a serious gem – they offer 3-4 COMPLETELY donation-based yoga classes per day. This was my second time going, and there is something really awesome about outdoor yoga under the sun. After the class, I decided to hike Runyon, which was fun. I never really go hiking by myself, but I enjoyed it.

horses & hollywood.

After some errands, I met up with Aviva and Armita for happy hour/early dinner downtown at my fav pizza place, Urbano Pizza Bar. We tried the “Quattro” and the “Fennel” pies, and both were scrumptious. A Stone IPA was also imbibed. They have an incredible happy hour – from 3-6 pm, M-F, all pizzas are half-off!

hand-rolled mozzarella for $5? not complaining.

We also checked out neighboring Library Bar (checking off another DTLA bar off my list!) I liked the place, but it was so insanely dark, especially for it still being light outside. We enjoyed a drink, chatted, and randomly ran into my friend Matt there. Small world.

Saturday morning Aviva and I drove out to Malibu to meet up with Taylor for a day of paddle-boarding, swimming, “naps in the sun” and his usual BBQ feast. It was a particularly windy day, meaning while I was paddling out I got knocked over by a huge wave and crashed into some rocks on the shore…so I have some gnarly scrapes and gashes that complement my bruise from shooting last weekend rather nicely. I am a little bit sore (scrapped my plan to go running today sadly) but it was otherwise really fun, and I got back out there. Swimming in the Pacific was awesome too, but it really made me realize just how badly I need to get into actual swimming shape. Here are some photos from the day…

paddle-boarding!

paddling out (before my big crash).

um, yes?

Now I’m hanging out with my family (my brother is back after his junior year in Santa Cruz) for Father’s Day.

Here’s last week’s workouts:

  • Monday: 3 mi. treadmill run, New Rules of Lifting For Women 2A, CorePower Yoga
  • Tuesday: 4 mi. run (AM)
  • Wednesday: 3 mi. treadmill run, NROFLW 2B
  • Thursday: 3 mi. run
  • Friday: Yoga, Hike
  • Saturday: (off, but I swam and paddle-boarded).
  • Sunday: Off. (Injured. Boo).

Happy Father’s Day Everyone 🙂 Hope I’ll be back before next Sunday…

missing motivation.

28 May

Normally, my blog posts are upbeat (although insanely sarcastic) and my workouts reflect a combination of resistance training and intense cardio (well at least I think they’re intense). This entire week, I had absolutely zero motivation to work out. Sure, I got myself to the gym on more than one occasion, but there was something seriously lacking. I’m not sure if it’s related to finals being done and a change in my schedule, but I’m hoping I find some motivation this week – especially since I’m running the San Diego Rock n Roll Half Marathon on Sunday! Any tips?

Here are last week’s workouts:

  • Monday – Cardio Barre
  • Tuesday – 3ish miles on the treadmill
  • Wednesday – Off
  • Thursday – 30 min. treadmill, light weights
  • Friday – Spin class, NROLFW 2A workout
  • Saturday – Off
  • Sunday – 8 mile run (5 chill miles with my roommate, 3 miles harder). I had no desire to do this run – pushed it to Sunday instead of Saturday, and even still needed my roommate to do it with me or else it would have been uggggly).

See what I mean about the lack of “oomph?”

In other news, this week was largely spent in the library. Last time I’ll say that for a few months! I completed my write-on packet on Friday (due on Tuesday) so I have been able to have my first real weekend in awhile!

Here’s some highlights from write-on week:

view from my school’s parking garage.

Dinner at bld. with Jenn and her law school friends…

lamb + tzatziki burger.

Post-write-on celebratory dinner with Whitney at the El Cholo in Santa Monica, with a pit-stop at her office in Brentwood.

hey, getty.

table-made guac!

(not pictured, a margarita + beer…clearly I was living large, and BOMB “Annie’s Early California Enchilada”).

On Saturday, Jenn, Aviva her friend Jane, and I decided to venture up to Sunset to try a new-to-us bar, The Den. Loved the fire pit, the Lagunitas IPA, and the outdoor seating underneath the famous Sunset Strip billboards. Didn’t love our snooty waitress, but I’ll be back.

me, jenn, and jane pretending it’s valentine’s day?

jane and avivaaaaa.

We ended up sitting at a table with two tourists from Slovakia. After they toolishly made us guess their profession (personal trainers) I picked their brains. One of them took a look at the NROLFW website and told me it was a good plan if my goal is to “get stronger.” It was pretty funny, and my girlfriends were definitely annoyed that I used the term “deadlift” in a bar setting.

the canadian tuxedo: popular with slovakian dudes.

The night obviously ended with some D’Amore’s and this photo.

Sunday featured my friend Lily’s college graduation party over in Brentwood, and a much-needed catch up session with my good friends Amanda and Krisse from my sorority. It was so fun seeing everyone!

Anyway, hope everyone in the U.S. is enjoying the day off for Memorial Day. I’m going to try and be in the sun and a little bit by hiking over on the westside. I almost forgot the reason we have this day off but was reminded when I saw a former track teammate post an article about a hurdler from my year in high school who died in Afghanistan a few years ago. Definitely worth a moment or two of the day to remember and give thanks to those serving our country.

re-entering society.

21 May

Dang, it feels good to be done with 1L.

After going out on Thursday for Bar Review/celebrating/going to sleep at 3 am, my body still was up with its game-face on at 7. Cool. I wanted to spend the day relaxing and just enjoying not having to study for the first time in weeks.

This goal of “relaxing” also included not letting myself workout. That idea didn’t last long – I quickly convinced Jenn to go on a 5 mile walk with me. We enjoyed some Jamba Juice at the half-way point.

la brea + santa monica blvd.

caribbean passion + soy protein boost.

I got a little bit sunburned, it was that nice out. We joked about how lucky we are to live in a city that so many people seek out as a tourist destination.

Later that day, Jenn and I combined forces with Aviva and Armita for a little lunch/shopping excursion before Whitney and I headed back downtown to celebrate our friend Kelsey’s birthday.

Whitney and I headed out early for dinner at Urbano Pizza Bar. I’d been there once before,  and loved it, and my earlier post came in handy so I could remember which pie was my very fav.

Luckily our waiter helped us out by pointing to the Spicy Sausage one. Delectable. We also ordered the Prosciuto di Parma.

pizza urbano.

Our food took a little while to come (this is an important part of the story) but I passed the time by telling funny stories. (You’re welcome, Whitney). After dinner, we met up with Kelsey and her crew at The Yardhouse, after braving the throngs of Laker fans and waiting in line, we finally found her!

Kelsey is one of my best friends from high school. I ran cross-country and track with her for four years, and she was (and still very much is) one of my running inspirations.  She went to USC for college and now lives in San Diego, so it’s not often that we’re all in the same place, so it was so fun to celebrate her 24th! We also hit up Pattern Bar where I downed an IPA. Typical.

And for the sake of nostalgia…

dream team 05.

Whitney and I grabbed a cab back to our car (we parked at Urbano). As we were heading into the lot, I realized we forgot to get our parking ticket validated. So, since Urbano was closed, we figured the bar next door, Library Bar, would do it for us. We walked over to the doorman, who immediately asked us “where we went after we left Urbano,” and apologized that our food took forever to come. Dan was a character – and we will seek him out in the future. Fun fact: making friends with bouncers was one of my favorite things about going out in Berkeley.

Saturday morning involved some serious DIY. Jenn and I, along with her friend Megan and Whitney, painted a few walls of our apartment! Here’s a sneak peek…

Adds a nice little “homey” touch to our place!

After I scrubbed [most] of the paint off my body, my parents swung by for an early dinner. I love cryptic texts from my mom that begin “what are you doing?” and end with “can we take you to dinner?”

We walked to Tart. I’d been here once before and liked it, but this spring/seasonal menu was way more up my alley.

menu.

It’s adjacent to a hotel, so we had a blend of other dinner guests and people using the pool in the background keeping us company.

Our waiter was awesome – attentive but not over-bearing, and FUNNY. Wish I remembered his name.

I went with a good old fashioned Strawberry Lemonade and left the drinking to my parents.

my mom and her mango mojito.

We app’d it up with some fried zucchini…

fried zucchini.

And I went with a chicken cesar – with pine nuts!

It was fun having my parents make a pit-stop in my neck of the woods – glad they were up to the challenge even with the recent bouts of crime near my “hood.”

Sunday morning involved a 10-miler, followed shortly by this bad-boy:

Here’s where the depressing part of my weekend came in. I am working on my “write-on” packet for the competition to get on the Loyola Law Review. This is what our parking structure looks like on the Sunday after finals. Tear.

It’ll be over in about a week. One more week of “intensity.”

Sunday night, Whitney introduced Jenn and I to her favorite ice cream place – Sweet Rose Creamery. It reminded me of Ici (for all you Berkeley kids).

sweet rose creamery.

so many flavorsss.

I went with the chocolate and coffee which was delicious. We spotted Josh Brolin and Diane Lane there which was also sorta nifty.

chocolate + verve coffee.

And in keeping with tradition  last week’s workouts:

  • Monday – 3 mile run (pre-final tradition)
  • Tuesday – NROLFW 2A
  • Wednesday – Spinning (Andrew’s class)
  • Thursday – 5 mile run (pre-final)
  • Friday – 5 mile walk
  • Saturday – light weights + run
  • Sunday – 10 mile run + PM: NROFLW 2B

Felt strong this week, hoping to add in some more fun things this coming week.

 

everything is a tort.

8 May

But seriously. If there is one thing I learned in studying for my 4 hour beast of a final yesterday is that negligence is everywhere (strict liability, however, is harder to come by). My exam yesterday consisted of 2 hours of essay writing (2 essays, limited to 3,000 words total which is not enough, ever), followed by a 20 minute break, and then 50 multiple choice questions. In law school they tend to refer to these as “objective” questions but I swear there is often more than one right answer. Hmph. Overall I think it went okay, not loving my policy essay but felt okay about the other 2/3 of it.

In other news, while this weekend was largely comprised of me sitting hunched over in the LLS library, we made a conscious effort to squeeze in some fun. On Saturday (Cinco de May), Blake, Taylor, Aviva, Armita, and Jackie and I  took a (possibly too long) lunch break at El Cholo for some margaritas and mexican grub. Such a fantastic call.

jackie and armita getting in the cinco de mayo spirit.

As fratty as calling it “Cinco DAY Drinko” is, there is something undeniably fun about enjoying a margarita during the day. Sort of a mood killer traipsing back to the library to take a self-imposed practice exam, though, but what can you do.

I ordered the Green Corn Tamales. These babies are only in season May-October but were so delicious. I will definitely order them again the next time I come to El Cholo.

It is sort of remarkable how much a meal out with friends can brighten up a study-filled day. Breaks are the best.

blake, armita, and aviva

Even if you sit next to someone who decides to order fajitas. I am sure the library enjoyed the fact I came back smelling like steak smoke. Cool, Taylor.

Joke.

After our exam yesterday, we dawdled around for a bit, mostly laughing at the fact that the entire campus’ internet was down so our exams, while stored on our hard drives, were not submitted. Let me tell you, that is an unsettling feeling. Not totally sure why the internet is down, but it sounds like the sort of thing that doesn’t happen in the absence of someone’s negligence.

My posse bopped over to Los Feliz for dinner at Home. I immediately went with a Sierra Nevada (and later a Hef – it was celebration time!). The Chicken club sandwich I had was also delicious.

blake, me, armita, aviva, taylor.

there’s no place like home.

After dinner, someone got the random idea to go bowling. I am a terrible bowler (I am too aggressive on the approach and my release is terrible). Everyone else in my family is pretty decent, but I never got the bowling gene, probably because it requires patience and skill.  We hit up Koreatown’s lovely Shatto 39 Lanes. For $12 a piece we got shoes and 2 games. For a Monday night at 8:30 pm, the place was bumpin’. I also enjoyed the sign above the lines urging us to “Bowl for Fun and Health.” Not sure bowling qualifies as a sport, but that’s okay.

blake in action: someone who clearly knows what he’s doing.

I lost both games, surprise surprise. I joked that I need private lessons, but in reality that is pretty low on the “needs” totem pole.

please note my nickname.

Today is consisting of taking it easy before starting the studying frenzy for Contracts and Intellectual Property (I have a week before my next one). I’m planning on spending the afternoon starting to look over some things at an outdoor cafe, followed by an evening workout.

Speaking of workouts, here’s what went down last week.

  • Monday: NROLFW 2B + 2 mi. treadmill
  • Tuesday: 5.13 mile run
  • Wednesday: 30 min treadmill run
  • Thursday: Yoga. So sad my Groupon expired!
  • Friday: Spin
  • Saturday: 4.65 mile run
  • Sunday: OFF

I didn’t get as much spin or weights in as I would have liked this past week, but I am blaming it on finals. Goals for this week? 2 spin classes, a longer run, and 2 weight workouts. Let’s see what happens.

Have a wonderful week!


How did you celebrate Cinco de Mayo?
 

the highlight of my week.

29 Apr

…was definitely seeing Bruce Springsteen in concert on Friday night at the Los Angeles Sports Arena! My parents are HUGE fans of “The Boss.” I remember my brother and I once found an old page of my mom’s calendar from some year in the 70s, and one particular day was highlighted in multiple colors because she was going to a Bruce concert that night. My parents have EACH seen him over 20 times. (And they say I have an obsessive personality…) I have listened to Bruce over the years and definitely have some favorite songs, and after years of hearing how epic he is as a performer I was excited to see him live.

So when they compulsively tickets to Bruce’s shows (yes, plural) in Los Angeles, I had no choice but to take a ticket off their hand. They went on Thursday night with two other couples, and I joined them on Friday (with my friend Aviva). We met up with my parents after studying for most of the day, and grabbed dinner close to USC at The Lab. I enjoyed a Lab IPA or two and their Greek Garden Burger which was pretty good.

you know you're in a college town when this acceptable.

greek garden burger.

This place was SUPER crowded – mostly due to the concert, but also due to the fact that it was the last day of school for USC undergrads. This made me instantly nostalgic for college (read: college bars) – I can’t believe I almost graduated two years ago! Nuts. [Just to be clear, I went to Cal, not U$C. Go Bears].

After dinner, we walked over to the venue. (Typing this word in a non-Civ Pro context is baffling. FML). Since my parents are Bruce-fiends they knew the 7:30 show wouldn’t start until 8:15 or so so we had plenty of time. He ended up coming on around 8:30 and played for a full three hours.

I didn’t recognize all of the songs, but he played some tried-and-true classics: Badlands, Dancing in the Dark, and my very favorite: Born To Run (are you surprised?). I liked his “My City of Ruins” which I remembered from the post-9/11 benefit concert, and enjoyed his newer song “Rocky Ground.” Tom Morello from Rage Against the Machine made two appearances on two different songs which was pretty awesome as well. The enthusiasm and energy at the show was infectious, and the sheer size of the E Street Band was impressive.

Bruce also interacts with the audience a lot which was cool – we were seated behind the stage and I didn’t feel like we missed out at all. He also brought an adorable 4-year-old girl on stage with him and she sang a few bars of a song with him.

baby we were born to run.

It was a great concert (much, much better than the last show I saw at the LA Sports Arena…Fall Out Boy and The All-American Rejects in 2006). Embarrassing.

Other things I’ve been up to this week?

Well, I finished my first year of law school classes! It’s hard to believe, especially since finals are still ahead of me, but it really did fly by. Now I am in finals “lock-down” mode. My first one in Civil Procedure, next Friday. I’ve been memorizing my outline, taking some practice tests, and making jokes about 12(b)(6) motions, embracing §1332, and permissive intervention whenever possible. But seriously. Right now, things like this are beyond funny:

Glad to see Berkeley Law (the law school formally known as Boalt) is representing. You stay hyphy, B-Town.

Before I head back to study-mode, here are my workouts from this last week:

  • Monday: AM: 5.2 mile run PM: First workout of NROLFW 2A. I was DEFINITELY sore on Tuesday.
  • Tuesday: OFF
  • Wednesday: Spin
  • Thursday: AM: 3.2 mile run, PM: Yoga with Lori Steele 
  • Friday: NROLFW 2B (with 14 min. treadmill interval workout)
  • Saturday: 8.5 Mile Run (felt great! went in the evening and only mild knee pain the last mile during a steep downhill).
  • Sunday: Spin
I dragged my friend Amber to yoga with me – she liked the class, and it was nice to have someone to laugh with during the harder poses.

yes, the yoga studio is inside of a fred segal.

I’m happy that I got a few runs in this week and was able to go longer than I have in awhile. I’m hoping to run 13.1 in a few weeks – just trying to ease the knee/IT band back into running.

Have a great week, everyone!

stage 1 and done.

22 Apr

Hope everyone had a relaxing weekend! Mine was a blend of good eats, good workouts, and studying. (I thought about also saying “good” studying but that was even a bit too nerdy for me…rough). I chowed at two new-to-me places, Mendocino Farms and 800 Degrees (separate post on this one to follow), and also indulged in my friend Armita‘s homemade pasta shells on Saturday and did The Color Run in Irvine – those were the big highlights.

Another accomplishment this week? I finished Stage One of the New Rules of Lifting for Women! I picked up this book after reading about Meghann‘s experience and hoping to have some structure for my time in the weight room. In the past, I would do the weight machines – I liked feeling like I was getting stronger, but I never really saw results with my haphazard attempt at lifting. After finishing Stage One, I feel stronger, noticed changes in my arms and shoulders, and have been able to lift heavier weights!

Stage One is the longest stage (18 workouts total). Each time I went to the gym, I would alternate between two workouts “1A” and “1B.” The first two workouts in each category were 2 sets of 15 reps, then 2 sets of 12, then 3 sets of 10, and finally 3 sets of 8, with the goal of gradually building up to heavier weights. The last two workouts in each stage involved going back to the lightest weight, and doing as many reps as possible. It was cool to notice the progression! I thought the workouts were fun, easy to follow, and short (20-30 minutes each time depending on how crowded the gym was).

final 1A workout.

Yes, I carried around paper and pen at the gym. And a clipboard. #comeatmebro.

Here’s what the workouts consisted of:

1A:

  • Squats (start: 30 lbs, finish: 50 lbs).
  • Push-ups (this is my weakest exercise – started with some on knee, finished with no knees!)
  • Seated Row (start: 60 lbs, finish: 75 lbs)
  • Step-Up (on a block) (start: 15 lb. free weight each hand, finish: 25 lb. free weight each hand)
  • Prone Jack-Knife (body weight)

1B

  • Deadlift (start: 40 lbs. finish: 60 lbs)
  • Dumbbell shoulder press (start: 15 lb. each hand. finish: 22.5 lbs each hand)
  • Wide-grip lat pulldown (start: 60 lbs. finish: 75 lbs).
  • Lunge (start: 17.5 free weight each hand. finish: 22.5 free weight each hand)
  • Swiss-ball crunch (free weight)

I did this workout 2-3x a week depending on how many times I was already going to the gym. I am not following the diet instructions (although implementing suggestions here and there) but I am so far happy with the program! It is easy to follow and not scary, and I like the fact I can fold it into my gym routine relatively easily! Fingers crossed Stage 2 is just as legit.

Speaking of workouts, here’s what went down this semana pasada:

  • Monday: Body Pump
  • Tuesday: Spin Class and NROLFW 1A Final Workout
  • Wednesday: Spin Class
  • Thursday: AM: 3 mile run + PM: Yoga
  • Friday: OFF
  • Saturday: Spin Class and NROLFW 1B Final Workout
  • Sunday:  The Color Run 5K

This week was light on the running but spin-heavy – gotta love my cardio! Hoping to get some longer runs in this week, spin, start NROLFW 2(!) and also make it to yoga.

And finally, keeping with the fitness theme, here a few pictures from last week’s Nike She Runs LA 10k.

emily and me, post-race.

Have a great week, y’all!

What’s your workout goal for the week??