Thursday, May 24, 2012

Playlist Thursday: Dance Party

Surprise!! I'm back! After multiple failed blog posts that just never seemed to go anywhere, I've finally decided to do a post on one of my favorite topics: music. Music has always been a huge part in my life, and even have pair of headphones tattooed to prove my love. It's been there for me when I need to cry, want to dance or my companion for a late night drive with the windows down to nowhere. It's my constant. When fellow blogger and twitter friend, Pavement Runner, posted his Playlist Thursday blog, I knew I needed to klepto his idea and get my booty back to blogging! Here we go!

The format:
Something Old: These will be songs that are at least 5 years old. I know that isn’t too long to be considered old, but music turnover happens quickly.Something Current: These will be songs that have been released within the past year. I know, but you have to give me some leeway here.Something to Consider: These will be songs that are not typically heard on the radio and may be by artists you’ve never heard of or considered running to. This is the wild card category, can be old or current.

Something Old:
Artist: Billy Idol
Title: Mony Mony
Side Note: Though I love both the Billy Idol and Tommy James & The Shondells versions, the Billy Idol version wins hands down for running. How can you want to slow your pace when Billy Idol in all his funky bleach blonde hair glory is screaming to "don't stop now!" It's like your own personal cheering section.
Quoteable: "Don't stop now, come on Mony"

Something Current:
Artist: Take The Day
Title: Freaks
Side Note: This is hometown Milwaukee pride at it's finest. The bassist of Take The Day is BFF's with one of my BFF's, so that totally makes us BFF's right?! These guys have really only been a band for a little over a year, but have exploded onto the scene with the help of being awesome and winning the Billboard music's Battle of the Bands Midwest spot. If you like running to Ke$ha or 3Oh!3 (guilty pleasure or not) this song needs to be on your playlist! 
Quoteable: "I hear the freaks come out. They don't stop dancing until the sunlight hits their eyes."
(psst! you can download the album version of  "Freaks" on iTunes)

Something To Consider:
Artist: Hanson
Title: Give A Little
Side Note: Yes. Hanson. The same guys that brought you MMMBop fifteen (yes. 15. One. Five.) years ago. I'm sure you'd rather me not blab on about where they've been and what they've been doing for the last 15 years, so I'll just leave you with a song that won't be able to keep you off your feet. 
Quoteable: "Give a little, let your body lose control"

Now that you've listened to my three songs, what are your dance party worthy "Something Old/Current/Consider" recommendations for me?

- Andie

Friday, March 2, 2012

Post-Injury PRs.

Trying to get back into running hasn't been difficult because it's hard to breath, or because it hurts (okay, I lied) but it's because I'm constantly comparing my post-injury times and distance PRs to those pre-injury. It can be incredibly disheartening going out for a 5k and coming in just under 40 minutes, when my pre-injury PR was under 29 minutes. Or heck, it's hard when I'm dying at the 3 mile mark when I used to go out for a fun 13 miler. Why can't I just be happy that I'm off the couch and no longer eating ibuprofen like they're Skittles? What happened to the Andie that used to go out for a run just to run without worrying about distance and speed? She got caught up with constantly training for one race or another for the entirety of 2011.

On Friday night I had one of those nights where I was angry and irritated and just wanted to punch a wall. Instead of punching a hole in wall and trying to explain that to housing or breaking my hand and trying to explain that (I ran into a door? I fell down the stairs?), I opted for a run. I laced up and I hit the pavement without a time or distance in mind. I just ran. I started by staying close to home in fear of my ITB getting angry, but began venturing off further and further from home. The result? A post-injury distance and time PR: 4.28 miles / 51:07 minutes = 12:05 min/mile.

First run with my Garmin 610. I'm in love.

Because of that run, I had an eureka! moment of sorts. I decided that just as I shouldn't compare myself to other runners, I also shouldn't compare my current self to my pre-injury self. Well, until the day I'm stronger and faster and can kick pre-injury Andie's butt.  

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Tips From A Nutritionist

If you follow me on Twitter you may or may not have seen that I've been recently making some changes in my life, specifically in my nutrition. This coming Saturday I'll be hitting week 6 of being #sodafree and lately I've been a lot more mindful about what I've been putting into my body. Since coming off of injury all that I've thought about is what I could do this time around to prevent my injury from coming back. Yes, I know... an IT Band injury is a common running injury. I've heard it all before, but I really do believe that I ultimately did something wrong for it to act up. Whether it was training too hard, not training consistantly enough, improper shoes or lack of nutrition, I do believe that they all go hand-in-hand (leg-in-leg? Har. Har. Har.) with my injury. 

Just the other week I met with one of the personal trainers from my work who also has his degree in nutrition, just to get some basics on what I could do to better from what I'm currently doing. From just making a few changes I'm noticing a huge difference in just a couple of weeks. As athletes, we're all always looking for new products to try and Aaron has some great ones listed below as well as easy food tips. I know I had a few friends who were interested in what he told me, but decided to take it a step further and ask if he'd like to do a guest post and share some tips. Below is what he has to share, and feel free to check out his website For everyone on Twitter, don't worry... I'm working on getting him into the Twitterverse. :)

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In a world where most people talk about wanting change, you actually took action and requested this special report. First off, let me promise you one thing, if you are consistent at applying the following information on a daily basis, you will experience PEAK PERFORMANCE AND RECOVERY...guaranteed! I have been teaching and instructing people for nearly 20 years now and those who reach their goals and stay there are simply the ones who apply small steps daily.

Below are what I call the "5 power steps" to PEAK PERFORMANCE. Let's begin.

WATER- The most overlooked nutrient!

You are approximately 70% water. Every process in the body, 
especially metabolism, requires proper hydration. Lack of adequate water intake can lead to poor sleep, fatigue, slow metabolism, and constipation. Just a 2% drop in water intake can slow everything down. DO NOT wait until you are thirsty before drinking water either. By that point you are already dehydrated. How much should you drink daily? 32 oz per 50 pounds of body weight meet your basic physiological needs. If you are an athlete, you will need more. Just be aware of this and drink more throughout the day. I strongly recommend buying a stainless steel 32 oz bottle that you can keep with you at home, work, or on the go. This will encourage you to drink throughout the day. Remember, out of sight, out of mind. 

I'm often asked if soda, energy and sports drinks, coffee, or alcohol can count towards the water need. The answer is no. These liquids often contain huge amounts of sugar and caffeine which only dehydrate you even more. Herbal teas such as peppermint, chamomile, or decaf green tea can count however. If you feel the need to make your water more appealing then add a packet of the non chemical sweetener Stevia and some fresh lemon juice. My personal favorite water fortifier is a product called

Solstic comes in several different flavors but is the perfect solution for supercharging your water with minerals, vitamins, and other critical nutrients without all the harmful sugar. it will provide your body with worthwhile nutrients lost during intense physical excursion like running. YOU MUST REPLACE THESE MICRO NUTRIENTS! My favorites are Solstic Revive and Solstic Twenty Four. If you have cardio vascular concerns use Solstic Cardio. This one step alone will transform your metabolism, energy levels and overall health and wellness. This is totally safe and ideal for kids because of the lack of sugar and chemical colorants. 


2. DETOX-You must clean house!

Look, after decades of eating the standard American diet of processed, refined, and mostly "dead" food, most of us are walking around with clogged and over-burdened digestive tracts. Our bowels, liver, and kidneys are saturated with chemicals and old, decaying food debris that literally paralyze our body’s ability to properly function and repair itself. 
Thinking that you do not need to detox or cleanse is about as naive as believing that you do not need to change your oil filter in your car or your home air conditioning filter. Like these filters, you are equipped with filters (liver, kidneys, and bowels) that need to be cleansed and helped from time to time. If you do not you will significantly add stress to your body and slow metabolism down. Most of us are carrying around 5-15 pounds of what is called fecal mucoid matter in the large intestine. This is built up, old, food matter that lines the walls of your intestines robbing you of proper absorption, and energy. By properly cleansing, you can safely and gently remove this built up junk and gunk. How does one cleanse? The foundation should always be organic, wholesome foods that are high in fiber. Vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, and fruits are typically high in fiber and help the bowels stay light and unclogged. Most of us however, could use the help of a high potency/quality detox program to help jump-start the cleansing process. Beware of just any old "detox" product however. Many companies have hopped on the band-wagon and marketed products that simply are full of natural laxatives that cause you to have increased bowel movements only. There is more to cleansing than just going potty. A good, strong, high quality detox product cleanses the bowels, but also the liver and kidneys. Potency and purity of ingredients is absolutely critical. Sadly, most companies don't put much into quality assurance when it comes to nutrition supplements. As a Certified holistic health practitioner, the only cleanse I use is a 14 day cleanse called Clean Start.

This is a simple, but very thorough 14 day cleanse that you can use while still going to work and living as you normally would. The common results are more energy, better sleep, and of course, FAT LOSS! This cleanse can safely be used every 2 months if desired. At least every four months is ideal.

3. FOOD - Dead or alive?

Most of the food people eat today is dead; meaning absent of any worthwhile nutrients such as minerals, vitamins, essential fatty acids, and natural anti-oxidants. Your body cannot burn fat and calories without optimum amounts of these substances. Too much attention is given to calories in this country and not enough on nutrition. Yes a piece of chicken breast and whole grain rice may seem healthy, low in calories etc...
But the reality is it is VERY low in minerals, vitamins, essential fatty acids and anti-oxidants. Inadequate nutrients equals sloooow metabolism every time. Foods like nuts and seeds (walnuts, almonds, pumpkin seeds, cashews), broccoli, asparagus, dark leafy green salads like spinach, romaine, or kale, apples, plums, peaches, blue berries, raspberries, salmon, whole grain bread such as Food For Life "Ezekiel" bread are all living, nutrient dense foods that will feed your metabolisms need to function. 

Blending up shakes or smoothies can be a very wise way to obtain super nutrition on a daily basis. First off, very little energy is needed to digest this liquid meal. This saves your body energy to heal, metabolize, and go about your day. Blending also allows you to consume more nutrition in one serving. You get more "bang for your buck" so to speak. One of the most nutritious meal replacement shakes I've come across is called 

To say that 
Nutri-Burn is just a protein shake would be terribly misleading. Nutri-Burn is a micro-filtered (very pure) whey protein powder. It also has an added enzyme blend to make the proteins even more available to your cells. They then add L-Carnitinean amino acid that specifically helps your body burn more fat! Green tea extract is then added (one of the most potent anti-disease compounds known), as well as a pre-biotic blend to help with healthy gut flora or healthy tummy bacteria. In short, Nutri-Burn is a powerful super food in powder form. If you were to substitute 2-3 shakes a day for a standard meal, you would supercharge your body's ability to burn unneeded belly fat, have more energy and experience overall better health.

Personally, I use a blender and blend vanilla
 Nutria-Burn, 1 banana, frozen blueberries, and unsweetened coconut or almond milk to make a VERY delicious meal. I do this for breakfast and one other time throughout the day. You can't find a more nutritious meal for under 3 bucks. If you are without a blender no problem. Just purchase a $3 shaker and you can keep Nutri-Burn with you anywhere. Just add liquid and shake it up!Remember, losing fat is not about starving yourself. You must consume nutrient dense, low calorie foods consistentlyNutri-Burn is a low calorie, nutrient dense solution to help you burn more fat and have tons of energy.

ELIMINATE STRESS- Tame Your Crazy Monkey!

What most people don't know is that stress is literally killing them, not to mention packing Lb's on the belly and back side. Regular, daily stress in the form of anger, worry, anxiety, jealousy, fear, or any other 
negative energy emotion throws your internal eco-system into a tailspin. This disrupts your ability to sleep well, think straight, and you guessed it...BURN CALORIES EFFICIENTLY. The problem for most is that regular stress has become the norm. Science now knows that stress hormones (such as cortisol) produced by the adrenal glands have a damaging effect on your body and brain when they are produced all the time. Certainly there are worthwhile ways to manage and cope with stress (massage, music, hot baths, exercise etc...), but the most powerful way to avoid the harmful effects of stress is to not become stressed in the first place. Impossible you may shout! Not really. The stress we experience in any given moment largely is the result of the way we perceive the event that lead to the stress. In other words our state of mind, or the way we look at the world is what then leads to the feeling of either joy and peace, or stress. This is why we often see two completely different responses by people to the same stimuli or event. We have the ability to relearn new and empowering ways of looking at the world (state of mind) around us which in turn impacts the end result....our feelings. What is important to understand right now is that stress slows your body's ability to function properly. Everything from immune function, to metabolism, to energy levels becomes paralyzed. For permanent results, we must go deeper than just having a glass of wine, or going for a run to counteract these negative effects. We must develop a healthier way of looking at things

My latest book, 
Taming Your Crazy Monkey (available here OR through me directly, is the result of years of experience with clients, training, and personal study. It will show you very simply how to begin creating new and empowering states of mind immediately. If you could lessen the stress, anxiety, worry, or anger in your life by 50% or more, what kind of an impact would that have on your daily experience at work and with loved ones? For most, the impact would be significant. When you change the way you look at the world, the world you look at changes. The challenge most folks have is they never take the time to cultivate a strong and healthy mind. They are so obsessed with the body, that the mind or healthy states of mind rather, are never given attention. Something the ancients have known for centuries is that the body follows the mind. 

HIRE A COACH- Direction, experience, RESULTS!

Look, whether you're Michael Jordan, or a successful business person, using an experienced coach or teacher can make it or break it for you on this journey to optimum health. 
This is an area where you do not want to be cheap or cut corners. Having an outside mentor who has years of experience in helping others can save you lots of time, money and frustration. Make sure that your coach is certified AND experienced. I've met plenty of coaches and trainers who have the education part down, but yet they do not "walk the talk", nor can they convey the information in a motivating way. Anyone can have information, but the delivery of that information is what makes all the difference. Having a specialist whom you can sit down face to face with can be priceless, especially in a field where there are so many false hoods and myths floating around. I am available for both group and personal counseling and training for those ready to experience permanent results. 

There you have it.
 6 simple steps to use as a guide to lose fat and supercharge your overall health. I can't emphasize enough the importance of taking daily action. It's not about doing great things, but little things greatly. As a reminder, and for those who are very serious about taking the bull by the horns and creating healthy, permanent change, I am available for personal counseling and group training. Remember, nothing changes until we first change ourselves

All the best!

- Aaron J Hermanson

For a detailed description on my background as a certified health practitioner, and for information on private and group training please visit:

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Making Time.

I have good news and I have bad news. Which would you like first? Good news? Good! Good news, I just got a job 3 weeks ago at a gym as front desk and sales. ::happy dance:: The bad news? I have had the hardest time fitting in work outs. ::hangs head in shame:: So what's a girl to do? Sit on my butt and watch Teen Mom 2 Make time.

Before this job, I had always given all my working-runner-moms (and dads) credit for the ability to balance life. Now, I have a whole new appreciation. Trying to balance a 40 hour a week job, work outs, housework and cooking has been a challenge to say the least. I couldn't even imagine adding a child or two into the mix of craziness in the morning. I have a hard enough time getting myself all prettied up, fed and caffeinated and adding a little one to that insanity has to be a balancing act all its own. 

Skipping work outs has to stop. Now. Right now. How? Writing my work outs into my schedule. It's not going to be pretty for a few weeks while I'm trying to get used to it, but I know once I get used to my new routine I'm going to love it. 

It's game on.

Also, I hope to have some awesome things in the works. Not going to give any information until I have the final word, but if all goes well it will be very very exciting! ::happy dance:: Another thing in my schedule is to add in blogging time [not pictured]. My goal is to have at least one post a week, or two if I want to spice things up. See you all next week. Pinky promise.

Question: How do you make time and balance work outs into a hectic schedule?

Friday, January 6, 2012

Day 50: Best News In A While

I hit quite the injury milestone the other day and it just so happened to be on my first day of physical therapy. It was also the day that I received some of the best news that I have had in quite a while. So first things first. What was my milestone? 50 days since I've gotten injured. Do I get a gift for that? If you've ever been injured, you know the irritation, anger and depression that comes along with not having your outlet, for me it's running. For the past year and a half running was my outlet. If I was sad, I ran. If I was stressed, I ran. If I was angry, I ran further and faster. Not having your outlet, your vice, it's hard to know how exactly to let out those emotions. In all honesty, I haven't exactly figured out what my new vice is. I have started cooking a lot more, and trying new recipes. Whether or not that's a new vice, I'm not sure but it sure has been exciting and delicious (and healthier than eating out/over-processed canned foods)! Maybe I'll start posting the recipes I'm using?

Now, now, now. I know you're so excited for my good news right? Huh, huh, huh?!
Well... my physical therapist is letting me run... well, walk the Carlsbad half marathon in a couple of weeks. Under other circumstances and normal time limits I wouldn't have even thought about it, but the Carlsbad half has a 4 hour and 30 minute deadline which makes it extremely do-able to walk. So far I've had two painful sessions with her, but I am noticing a difference. She said as long as I get back to "training" (I'm using that word quite loosely) and keep up with my stretches and exercises, I should have no major issues. Once again, I'm completely thrilled with my doctors, and them understanding that "Well, just don't run" isn't an acceptable recovery option to a runner. While I'm not exactly sure what I expected out of physical therapy, I feel like she has gone above and beyond. Today she gave me a 9 week training schedule to ease back into running, almost an injury version of Couch 2 5k.

While I never wanted to hit 50 days of being injured, I'm so incredible thankful that I feel like I'm finally on the winning end. A huge thanks to everyone, my PCM at the Naval Hospital for listening to me, my physical therapist for taking extra time, my twitter friends for all of their advice and my husband for putting up with my crying fits and panic attacks. ::takes a bow:: Yep, I feel like I was just giving my thank you speech at the Academy Awards. You know you enjoyed it. :)

Friday, December 30, 2011

Chaotic Thoughts of an Injured Runner...

It's been six weeks since my IT bands FREAKED THE EFF OUT started to hurt, and I'm officially going stir crazy. I really thought I hit rock bottom a few weeks ago, but I've hit new lows. I've foam rolled. I've ice packed. I've relaxed watching the entire third season of Sons of Anarchy in just over a day. I've ibuprofened/Naproxened. Now, I'm starting to eat my feelings.

Yes. My IT Band freaked out exactly like this...

I had my physical therapy evaluation just the other day, and I would be lying if I said that I wasn't in some major pain afterwards. After an hour of being poked, prodded and moved into crazy positions to test my flexibility I was over it. But! She showed me a few stretches, new correct foam roller techniques and how to use a rolling pin (yes, a kitchen rolling pin) to roll out muscles when they're too tight to use full body pressure on my foam roller.

Here's where my crazy thoughts come in and I apologize if it's chaotic.

Well, see... there's this half marathon coming up in three weeks. I'm actually scheduled for it's big brother, the full marathon, but since my injury six weeks ago my husband and I have traded bibs. I'm really trying to heal in the next few weeks so I can attempt to walk/jog the 13.1 miles. I haven't ran in 6 weeks, but I'm determined to run a race that I've been looking forward to for so long (and also 1 of 3 in the San Diego Triple Crown). It's bad enough that I've had to give up my hopes of running the full marathon option. It literally broke my sweet little heart. What has seemed to make things worse was trading bibs with my husband, and giving him my bib for a full that was supposed to be my first. Am I sad? Yep. Am I jealous? Heck yea. Am I holding a grudge? I'm trying really hard not to, but I'd be lying if I said that a little part of me doesn't hurt when he's out on his training runs. So I have 3 weeks to heal, and to attempt a half marathon in the 4 hour 30 minute deadline (definitely do-able... I think). Something inside of me is saying "Heck yes, Andie!" and there's the other voice saying "This is a bad idea..." and there's this third voice telling me "Just keep watching Netflix and eating your feelings."

Which will win? Only time will tell.

Though this is incredibly tempting....

Thursday, December 22, 2011

2011 In Pictures (and a few words)

It has been a truly incredible 2011 and filled with so many different emotions. Wanted to do a quick post of some of the highlights, and what I think about when I look back at the past year. Enjoy. :)

January 1, 2011 - The Fiesta Bowl w/ Kyle's brother and his wife to watch OU. Boomer!

February 7, 2011 - Super Bowl. Green Bay Packers are #1. Go Pack Go!

March 31, 2011 - Mini-Hanson concert/Radio promo in Palm Springs with Michelle and Kyle.

April 2011 - My husband (far left) and his Marines the day they deployed to Afghanistan. 

Spring 2011 - The husbands left and we started hiking to keep busy.

May 13-15, 2011 - Met some of the most amazing people in Tulsa, Oklahoma
for a members-only Hanson event.
Bonded by Hanson. Family for life.

June 2011 - Filmed a vlog with my best friend, Vincenzo, while eating German snacks.

July 3, 2011 - The 4th of July NOIZE Party
Glow sticks. Glitter. Girl Talk. Red Bull.
If you weren't there, you wouldn't believe the stories.

Summer 2011 - Skype dates with the husband were always treasured.
Even thousands of miles away he knew how to make me laugh.

July 10, 2011 - Ran my first half marathon, The Summerfest Rock n Sole in Milwaukee, WI.  Between the poor race planning and the weather, it was a horrible experience but I survived!

Late July 2011 - This sums up Stephanie and I's caffeine fueled road trip from Wisconsin to California.

August 5, 2011 - Celebrating our 5th wedding anniversary alone.
... the life of a military wife. 

August 2011 - Took my sister to DisneyLand for the first (and second and third) time.

August 21, 2011 - Ran my second half marathon (with a 30+ minute PR) with my little sister at the finish line.
This was my first race having family at the race to cheer me on. Felt incredible. 

October 2011 - HOMECOMING! After 7 months, he's home. 

November 21, 2011 - United Stated Marine Corps Birthday Ball

As the year draws to a close, I also want to reflect on the loss of five men from our Darkside 3/4 Marine Corps Family while on their most recent deployment to Afghanistan. May these men never be forgotten, and their ultimate service to our country always be remembered. 

Cpl Paul Zanowick

LCpl Jason Hill

Cpl Mark Goyet

Lcpl Christopher Camero

SSgt Leon Lucas

What will you remember most about 2011, and what do you look most forward to in 2012?