Saturday, November 7, 2015

Coffee talk - November edition

Greetings from Tel Aviv! After 19 hours of traveling, Adam and I arrived at our hotel Saturday night local time, then immediately hit the sack. A few hours later, I'm in a jetlag-induced state of alertness while the rest of the city is still sleeping. Time to blog. =)

I am linking up with CocoDeborah, and Lynda for the November edition of Coffee Talk.

The Ultimate Coffee Date

This link-up asks: "If we were having [insert choice of beverage here] together, I would tell you..."

My first impressions of Israel are good.
We'll talk in further detail after I actually get out and start seeing things - but here are a few thoughts right off the bat:

1) I was bracing myself for massive security when clearing Customs and Immigration. However, the process ended up being a breeze. "What are you here for? How long will you be staying? Enjoy your visit." BAM.

2) I was hoping to get an Israeli stamp in my passport. No go, unfortunately (I read some sources saying Israel has done away with stamps altogether). But I did receive this arrival card, which I am hoping to keep:

3) From what I've seen so far, Tel Aviv is an extremely hip and modern city. It's loaded with shops, restaurants, and nightlife, and the streets are filled with folks walking around. There's great energy everywhere.

More to come!

I finally took the plunge on a new hairstylist.
I loved my old hairstylist and had been going to see her for many years. However, her location, hours, and availability were getting more and more inconvenient. It took me several months of ruminating and crowdsourcing before I finally decided to try a new salon.

The risk paid off in spades. I love the new stylist and was THRILLED with the much-improved convenience. Thumbs up all around! Thanks Vanitha for the great recommendation!

My haircut is a few weeks old now, but here is the before and after from the day of:

I am infamous!
Did anyone see this article with a collection of folks sharing their most awkward moments? I first read them at work and they are HILARIOUS. I was struggling to hold back from laughing uncontrollably at my desk. (I'm sure coworkers were giving me the side-eye and wondering why I was having trouble breathing in and out.)

Perhaps as a springboard from that collection, Runner's World asked folks to share their most awkward running moments. I provided an abbreviated version of this incident.

Runner's World later included it in their summary article.


Yay for publicity (even if said publicity comes from my embarrassments)!

Thanks Maureen for finding the article and sharing with me!

Shoe demos are the best.
I had heard so much about Hoka shoes and have been very curious to find out about the hype surrounding them. I was thrilled to hear about a Hoka demo night being hosted at the Live Grit triathlon store last Tuesday.

I met up with Lauren at the event and we both tested out the Hoka Constant:
Left: Selfie with Lauren
Right: Our Hoka Constant test shoes
Afterwards, I also took a pair of Hoka Cliftons for a quick spin.

The verdict? Between the two, I liked the Constants better because they offered better support. But in general, I can definitely see why people like Hoka shoes so much. They are very light and springy.

After the demo, I put my own shoes back on to run home. By comparison, my shoes felt so hard and flat. It was jarring, both mentally and physically.

I'm a traditionalist so I'm not completely sold on Hokas yet - but the doors have definitely been opened for future consideration. Maybe as a rotational shoe to keep things diverse? TBD.

I am looking forward to closing out my last races in 2015. 
I've got two more events coming up this year - both are "double" races. On Thanksgiving Day, I'm once again doing the PNC YMCA Turkey Trot Collins Wardle Double Gobble (a 5K and a 5-Miler). Less than two weeks later, I'll be running the Rock N Roll San Antonio Remix Challenge (a 10K on Saturday and a half marathon on Sunday).

I am nervous about finding the time to train properly amidst a very busy stretch of work and travel.

I won't kid you, it feels burdensome. I'll be happy when the races are over. This winter I am planning to give myself a solid "off-season" from running. I am excited to focus on strength-training, yoga, barre, Zumba, and maybe some indoor biking.

Your turn! What would you tell me over coffee or other beverage of choice?

25 comments:

  1. Haha! Your story is hilarious! And how fun that you were featured on RW!

    I thought I'd be thrilled that race season is over, but even with some biggies on the calendar for next spring, I'm feeling a little wistful..

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    1. Thanks Wendy! It's nice to make lemonade out of lemons when it comes to these embarrassing moments, yes?

      I hear you on the feeling wistful simply because I'm not there. I saw everyone's photos from Hot Chocolate this morning and was wishing I was running, too!

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  2. I love your new look! I need a hair style. Period. My pony tail has gotten very old. I would assume customs might be tricky. Good for you it was so easy. I hope you enjoy your trip. Since I'm having my off season now, I'm looking forward to some awesome winter racing.

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    1. Thanks HoHo! My ponytail had gotten so old that it was hurting my head from putting pressure in the same place day after day. I tried to switch up the ponytail but it felt funny, you know? So the haircut felt great. Thanks for the well wishes on the travels! I am glad to hear your foot is recovering and I can't wait to hear about your upcoming winter racing plans!!!

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  3. Interested to hear more on Israel!

    Love the new 'do! And I LOVE my Hoka Cliftons. They are so great for recovery runs and long runs and even 5Ks and 10Ks. I still race in my Karhus.

    Race season ends? ;)

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    1. I'll share more tidbits on Israel soon! I'm trying not to go too crazy with the number of photos I post on Instagram so I don't overload folks. But it's definitely a challenge!

      Thank you for the kind words on my new 'do! I was going to ask you what Hokas you wear so thanks for sharing. I've never tried Karhus, either, but hear good things.

      LOL on race season ending as I just read that you signed up for three more races! Go get 'em, Erica!!!

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  4. I love the haircut very flattering on you! Have an amazing time in Israel. My husband goes there a few times a year for work. He says you can ask for a stamp on your way out :) Thanks so much for joining us for coffee and can't wait to hear more about your trip.

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    1. Thank you so much, Deborah! Thank you for hosting the coffee talk, as always - it's always so much fun to read through everyone's posts. That is awesome that your husband gets to go to Israel for work! He must get a ton of frequent flier miles with all those travels! Much appreciate the tip for asking for a stamp on the way out, woo hoo!

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  5. What salon did you end up going to??? I need a new one.

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    1. Lakshmi Salon at 1327 W 18th Street in Pilsen - right in your hood! I got my haircut by Nico and he was fantastic!

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  6. Love your new 'do! Can't wait to hear more about Tel Aviv. Thanks for joining us for coffee.

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    1. Thank you, Coco - thanks for hosting coffee! I am loving reading everyone's posts!

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  7. Love your new hairdo! So chic! I SO need to try Hoka's. I feel like the last runner on the planet who hasn't. Can't wait to hear more about Israel!

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    1. Thanks Marcia! I would be very curious to hear what you think of Hokas once you do try them. I was blown away by how many folks started wearing them! I appreciate the "maximal" shoe trend much more than the Vibram-type minimal shoes. Probably not a coincidence that nobody seems to wear Vibrams anymore, right?

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  8. Your tweet is hilarious! And I love the haircut :) Hope you have a great time on your trip!

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    1. Thank you so much, Alexandra! It's always good to be able to spin these moments into something humorous, yes? =D The best thing about the new haircut was how lightweight it felt when I washed it for the first time. More to come on the trip soon!

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  9. How awesome you are loving Tel Aviv!
    Your hair looks great! I need to freshen my ends up lol this reminded me :)
    the RW LOL
    I have a pair of Hoka's and I found them hard to run in, felt like too much shoe, so I hike in them. I just wish the sole was a little less...maybe I have the wrong model. I am all about cushion.

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    1. Thank you Karen! It's amazing how good it feels to get the ends freshened up. The newly-cut feeling is the best! I can understand why folks would find the Hokas to be too much shoe - it is nice to be able to feel the ground! Hiking is a great usage of the maximal sole, for sure. I love cushion, too!

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  10. Your haircut looks great! Definitely a flattering cut for your face shape.

    I went to Mexico a couple of years ago and was UNSPEAKABLY bummed that I didn't get a passport stamp. I was there for a week-long "immersion trip" on the border, so we literally just walked across the border from Arizona into Mexico, and that was that. So anticlimactic! Not to mention a VERY different experience from walking back from Mexico INTO Arizona. Believe it or not, the U.S. Border Patrol is much less relaxed about letting people from Mexico into the United States than the Mexican Border Patrol is about letting people from the U.S. into Mexico.

    Bethany @ Accidental Intentions

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    1. Thank you, Bethany!

      I would love to hear more about your immersion trip! Did you cross in Nogales? I've done the border crossing in both Tijuana and Nogales and I agree with your assessment on both sides of the border! Incidentally, I once watched a documentary on the border patrol. It was terrifying to see the schemes people used to try to smuggle drugs through!

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  11. Wow, it must be amazing to be in Israel - so far so good, that's great! I've got one more big race, and it's this weekend - looking forward to the offseason, but still need to get my calendar ready for the spring!

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    1. Thanks Janelle! I hope your race goes well this weekend - it'd be awesome to close out the racing year on a nice high note! Isn't it exciting to start thinking about planning for spring races, too? Love having the nice clean slate to work with!

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  12. Love you new haircut! And I am bummed I missed the Hoka Night.

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    1. Thanks Zenaida! I am bummed you missed Hoka Night, too - it was a very cool experience to be able to demo the Hokas!

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