Tag Archives: surveys

The Liebster Award

Hiya, friends—Happy Saturday!  I’ve been sitting on this post for a while—both Meghan and Haley nominated me for the Liebster Award—so since I’m shopping with my mom and sisters today, now is the perfect time to share the survey.

liebsteraward

First, I have to share 11 random facts.

1.  I have the best family ever.  My parents, sisters, and I are very close, and we see my mom’s side of the family—grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins—sees each other almost every weekend.

familydinneratcanalviewfamily-graduation

On Sunday, there’s a huge Italian feast with pasta, pizza, homemade meatballs, all the classics.

2.  Twins definitely run in my family.  My younger sisters are twins, and so are my aunts. (Actually, one of my aunts married a twin!) Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if one of my sisters or I have twins.

3.  I’m always cold, and I have no idea why.

4.  My powers of persuasion are unparalleled.  As a high school senior, I essentially talked my way out of taking both math and physics, and as a first-year college student, I cut a deal with my Russian professor so I wouldn’t have to take the oral portion of the final exam.  Some of my best work occurred last year when I convinced my Economics prof to curve our midterm exam and make our final exam a take-home “essay.” (As a Writing and Rhetoric major, I do not consider a two-page response an essay.) Maybe this explains why I like rhetoric so much?  Ha!

5.  My morning routine includes turning on the coffee maker, brushing my teeth, and making my bed (in that exact order); I can’t function without making my bed.

6.  If you can make me laugh, then we’re going to be best friends.

7.  During 7th grade, my family lived with my grandparents for a year because we renovated our house.  The project was supposed to take a few months, but it ended up lasting nearly one year!  Even though it was tough making the 25-minute commute from their house to school (and to sports practices and games and …), it was definitely a year I’ll never forget.  How many people can say they lived with their grandparents?

8.  I can’t fall asleep without put on ChapStick and hand cream, specifically Crabtree and Evelyn’s Avocado, Olive and Basil.

9.  I had braces from the end of third grade until the middle of sixth, so I also wear a retainer every night.  So cool, I know.

10.  Two things you can always find on me include my water bottle and a banana/bag of almonds.  Never know when hunger will strike!

11.  Coffee cures everything.

12:5-#holidayaday-cozy

Next, I have to answer the questions Meghan and Haley asked.

1.  What was your favorite subject in school?  Your least favorite?

English, although I enjoyed French and Spanish, too.  Actually, I even received the foreign language award at graduation.

foreign-language-award-high-school-graduation

And as you can tell from above, math was definitely my least favorite.

2.  What’s your dream job?

My immediate dream job would be writing and/or managing a diet and fitness publication (a la Lucy Danziger), and down the road, I can also see myself going to grad school, getting my masters and PhD, and becoming a college professor.  Talking about writing and rhetoric all day sounds pretty baller!

3.  Is there a time in your life you wish you could go back to?

Some days, I do miss playing high school basketball and hanging out at Camp Hoho going to college, but I wouldn’t go back.

4.  Where’s your favorite place to shop?

For “normal” clothes, my go-to stores include Gap, Anthropologie, J. Crew, Banana Republic, Ann Taylor, and DSW Shoes.  For athletic apparel, I obviously love Fleet Feet and Syracuse Bicycle, and I also like JackRabbit Sports and Paragon Sports.

5.  If you could write a novel, what genre would you write?  Why?

Literary fiction—I’ve met a lot of interesting people who would make great “characters.”  And although it isn’t a novel, a memoir would be a lot of fun to write.

6.  Name three favorite foods.

Salmon, Greek yogurt, and (dark) chocolate.

7.  What’s one food you hated as a child that you now love?

Hmmm … I used to hate tomatoes; I don’t love them now, though, but I do tolerate them.  I’m also starting to appreciate sweet potatoes and spaghetti squash.

8. How many different places have you lived?

Cazenovia, NY (hometown); Canastota, NY (with my grandparents during our house renovation); Geneva, NY (during college); London, England (during my semester abroad); and now, New York, NY!

9. Who is your role model?

I’m very fortunate to have inspirational friends and family members, plus a couple college professors.  I think inspiration—and role models—can be found anywhere; you just have to look.

10.  Why do you blog?

Because it’s fun!  I love writing and interacting with likeminded people, so blogging about healthy living everyday can’t be beat.

11.  What’s the accomplishment you’re most proud of from 2012?

Completing my Honors project and graduating from college. (Was that really this year?  It seems like ages ago!)

Graduation

(Although finishing my first triathlon would be a close number two.)

Your turn:  What was your favorite subject in school?  What are your three favorite foods?  And since the new year is quickly approaching, what 2012 accomplishment are you most proud of?

My Christmas Survey

Happy Christmas Eve Eve, friends!  Who’s excited for Santa?

buddy-the-elf-santa

I’m spending the day baking more Christmas cookies and hanging out with the family, and I figured now would be a good time to share my responses to a survey Courtney shared last week.

1.  Favorite Christmas album/CD/song?

As I shared in a previous survey, I have a serious soft spot for Mannheim Steamroller and Bing Crosby.  In fact, my sister and I listened to both yesterday while we made cookies.  ‘Tis the season!

2.  Run on Christmas morning or take the day off?

Hmmm, I’ve done both in the past.  During my collegiate basketball days, I would take the day off (mostly to spite my coaches–ha!), but I’m pretty sure I ran last year; I participated in the first Runner’s World Run Streak that challenged runners to tackle at least one mile everyday between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, so I think I ran.

3.  What do you usually eat on Christmas morning?

We always have a special breakfast—like baked French toast—on Christmas morning.  This year, we’ll have an egg bake and gingerbread pancakes.

4.  Favorite holiday or Christmas tradition?

After Thanksgiving, my family goes to Critz Farms to cut down our Christmas tree.

critz-farms-collage

Speaking of …

5.  Real tree, fake tree, or no tree?

I’ve grown up always having a real tree, but I have nothing against artificial ones.

12:22-christmas-tree

Any tree is better than no tree, right?

6.  Christmas pajamas … yay or nay?

Way back in the day, my mom used to sew Christmas jammies for my sisters and me.  Time for some throwbacks!

christmas-jammies

She even made some for Ellen’s doll!  Mildly embarrassing, but whatever; I loved my Christmas jammies.

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Clearly, the late 90s were a tough era for me—ha!

7.  Where do you spend the holidays?

We usually host Christmas Eve dinner, and we head to my aunt and uncle’s house for Christmas Day festivities.

8.  Food that you always have during the holiday season?  Favorite Christmas food/treat?

My grandma’s crack!

grandmas-toffee

Er, homemade toffee!

9.  Open presents all at once or take turns?

My sisters and I open our stockings first, and we usually stagger present-opening a bit.  It’s fun to watch their reactions!

10.  Favorite Christmas(ish) movie?

Is it a copout if I say Elf?  It’s just so good!

Your turn:  What do you eat on Christmas morning?  Real or fake tree?  Do you love Elf as much as me?

Holiday Favorites Survey

Happy December, friends!  It’s officially the holiday season!  A few weeks ago, Meghan tagged me in this survey, and since the Christmas countdown has began, it’s time to share my answers.

1. What’s your favorite Christmas song?

I have a soft spot for Mannheim Steamroller. (Link below is for Carol of the Bells.) I also love Bing Crosby; to me, he’s the voice of Christmas.  Oh, and Michael Bublé.

2. Have you ever gone shopping on Black Friday?

I have indeed!  It was during my freshman or sophomore year of college, and one of my friends wanted a new laptop.  We had a sleepover, set our alarms for the ungodly hour of 3 a.m., and went to Walmart shortly thereafter.  She scored a great deal, but unless I need a TV or a big-ticket item, I will never brave those crowds again.

3. What’s your favorite Christmas movie?

Any and all of the old school claymation films—Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Rudolph’s Shiny New Year, The Year Without a Santa Claus.  The Heat Miser and Snow Miser are my favorites.

heat-miser-snow-miser

I also love Elf and The Family Stone.

4. Who’s your favorite person to shop for on your list?

I have a lot of fun shopping for my sisters.  Most of the time, I’ll stumble upon items that seem “so them,” which means no true “shopping” is required.

5. Who’s your least favorite person to shop for?

Shopping for my dad is definitely the most challenging.  Speaking of–Dad, what do you want for Christmas?  Ha!

6. What’s your most memorable Christmas gift you’ve ever received?

One year, my sisters and I got a pink Barbie house.  It stood about three feet tall, and there were two floors, plus a rooftop deck.  We spent hours playing Barbies back in the day.

barbie-house-90s

[I’m not talking about this particular house, but we also had this one.  Source.]

7. What’s your most memorable Christmas gift you’ve ever given?

Hmmm, nothing is coming to mind.  However, I do remember when one of my sisters gave the other rocks as a joke.  Grandma didn’t like that at all!

8. Where’s your favorite place to go Christmas shopping?

I usually hit up local/one-of-a-kind shops for Christmas presents, but if those fail, then Target, Barnes & Noble, etc.

9. What was one of your favorite Christmas memories?

For Christmas Eve dinner one year, my grandparents, uncle, and his girlfriend came over for dinner, and right as the crescent rolls came out of the oven, we lost power.  Timing couldn’t have been better—ha!  We now call that night our “18th century Christmas celebration” because we ate dinner by candlelight.

10. Who’s your favorite Christmas shopping buddy?

My mom.  She’s also my favorite regular shopping buddy.

11. Do you decorate for the holidays and put up a tree?  When do you normally do it?

When I was home for Thanksgiving, we bought our tree, but I don’t think it’s been put up yet.  Hopefully, I’ll be home in time to help hang ornaments.

12. And fine, just one food-related question, what’s your favorite Christmas dessert?

Anything chocolate, obviously.  Or anything from our annual bake-off.

christmas-2010-bake-off

Your turn:  favorite Christmas song and movie?  Favorite holiday memory?  What are you looking forward to the most about the holiday season?

Thanksgiving Traditions

Happy Thanksgiving!

I’m off trotting and then eating, but since I didn’t want to abandon the blog for a day, I thought it would be a good time to share some answers from a Thanksgiving survey Natalie originally posted.

1. Do you have any Thanksgiving traditions?

My family usually has a special breakfast like pancakes and French toast, and we watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

2. List at least three dishes that are on your family’s table every year.

Green beans, roasted carrots, and my great aunt’s recipe for twice-baked potatoes–we call them Aunt Jeana’s Potatoes.  I’m so excited for AJPs!

3. Do you prefer pumpkin pie or pecan pie?

Honestly, neither; I’m an apple pie girl.

4. Will you watch football on Thanksgiving Day?

Um, sometimes.  I don’t follow football, so it’s not like I *need* to watch a game.  My cousins and I plan to watch Animal House, though.

5. Do you plan to exercise Thursday?

You bet—I’m doing the 3rd Annual F-M Turkey Trot to be exact.

6. Do you prefer ham or turkey?

Definitely turkey.

7. Will you shop on Black Friday?

I have in the past, but I will not be waking up at an ungodly hour to shop this year.  Although I do want to go to Syracuse Bicycle at some point; the shop is hosting a huge fall clearance sale!

8. Do you take a nap on Thanksgiving?

Not usually.  After eating, my family usually plays games—Catch Phrase and Apples to Apples are our favorites!

9. Share one dish that probably won’t be on anyone else’s table.

My aunt’s three-bean casserole.  It’s quite infamous.  I’ll be sure to take a picture.

10. What are you thankful for today?

My family, my health, and my blogger friends!

Have a great day!

Running Pop Quiz

Hiya, friends!  Happy Sunday!  Prior to Hurricane Sandy, I planned to run the NYRR Dash to the Finish Line 5-K this weekend, but the race–as well as the ING NYC Marathonwas canceled.

Even with a chip, race bib, and starting line, I’m putting my legs to good use this morning.  Along with other NYC marathon and local runners, I’m running and delivering aid to Staten Island; check out the Facebook page New York Runners in Support of Staten Island for more information.  Since I’m off running, I figured it would be a good time to post a running-related survey.  Mary shared her answers a while back, so this is long overdue.

1. Fuel:  GU, shot blocks, energy chews, candy, or other?

Although the world of nutrition is relatively new to me, I’ve fallen in love with GU energy gels.  Before a triathlon, I take Espresso Love, and during long runs, I slam Vanilla bean.

[Before a CNY Triathlon Club training event at Jamesville.  I was still testing different flavors.  Mint Chocolate tasted too strong to me.]

2. Race length: 5-K, 10-K, half-marathon, marathon, ultra, or other?

Tough one.  I have the most experience with 5-Ks, but I feel like it’s almost too short.  The Boilermaker 15-K epitomized fun, and the 35th Tromptown Run proved to be a disastrous first half-marathon.  I bet the 10-15-K range is my sweet spot, but I’ve never completed an official 10-K race.  I guess this needs to change!

3. Workout bottoms:  skirt, capris, pants, running shorts, or other?

I talked about this in my 10 Running Questions survey—Nike tempo shorts are my go-to, unless I’m racing or running long; those runs call for Nike Pro Dri Fit.  Since I hate covering up my legs when I run, I’ll wait until it’s 40 degrees Fahrenheit or so to rock Under Armour bottoms.

4. Sports drink:  Gatorade, Powerade, Cytomax, or stick to water when you run?

I stick to water.  My hydration strategy would obviously change for longer events—think marathon or half-Ironman—but since I don’t cover these distances yet, I down good ol’ H2O.

5. Running temperatures:  heat or cold?

Give me the cold!  When it’s freezing, my body can eventually warm up, but if it’s scorching, it’s difficult to get my core temperature down.

6. Running shoe brands:  Saucony, Mizuno, Nike, Brooks, Asics, or other?

Even though I’ve been an Asics girl since day one, my new sneaks are Mizunos, and I love them!

7. Pre-race meal:  oatmeal, bagel, banana, eggs, cereal, or other?

Two cups of coffee, one bowl of Kashi oatmeal, and plenty of water.

8. Rest days:  one per week, two or more per week, never ever, or other?

Usually one or two per week.

9. Music:  have to have it or go without it?

Since I can’t listen to music during triathlons, I’ve become more comfortable “running naked.”  I can usually last 40-50 minutes without needed an earbud boost, but I do prefer having my shuffle for longer outings.

10. Number one reason for running:  stress-relief, endorphins, you love to race, so you can eat all the cupcakes you want, weight-loss, love running, for social reasons or other?

All of the above!  I feel much happier, more confident, and more balanced when I run on a regular basis.

It’s your turn:  share one, a few, or all of your answers!

Alphabet Survey

Happy Saturday, all!  How’s your day going?  Since it looks like Hurricane Sandy will hit the New York City area within the next few days, I’m stocking up on emergency supplies.

[source]

Today’s first order of business is buying a flashlight with lots of extra batteries.  Anyway, both Alex and Meghan posted this survey, so I’m following suit and doing the same.  Who doesn’t love a good survey, right?

A is for age:

I’m 22 years old, which means I’m, like, an adult.  Scary.

B is for breakfast today:

I’m craving eggs and almond butter, so it’s anyone’s guess at this point.

C is for currently craving: 

As you can tell from my previous answer, my cravings have been out in left field.  Last night, I found myself craving a hamburger and French fries; who am I?  Ha!

D is for dinner tonight:

Right now, I have no idea.  I can’t think about dinner until lunchtime.  That’s normal, right?

E is for favorite type of exercise: 

Swimming, biking, running, strength training, practicing yoga—any and all of the above, please!  Running is my favorite, though.

F is for an irrational fear:

Nothing out of the ordinary here, just snakes, spiders, etc.

G is for gross food:

Olives and onions.  Keep ‘em away!

H is for hometown:

Small-town alert:  Cazenovia, NY, which is about 30 minutes southeast of Syracuse. (Go Orange!)

I is for something important:

I’m pulling a friends and family combo.

J is for current favorite jam:

“Tea, a drink with jam and bread” or “this is beat is my jam”?  Since I don’t use jam, I’m going with the music variety.  Right now, I have Maroon 5’s “One More Night” on repeat. (Funny enough, I had in stuck in my head during the DeRuyter Lake Triathlon, but I changed the words to “One More Tri.”  I like to think it helped me hammer on the bike.)

K is for kids:

Someday.  That day is not today.  Or tomorrow.  Or any day within the next five to eight years.  Ha!

L is for current location:

New York City!

M is for the most recent way you spent money:

I went to Whole Foods last night to buy carrots, almond butter, and onion powder.  Exciting stuff, right?

N is for something you need:

Besides a full-time big-girl job, I would absolutely love some quality time with my college BFFs.  I miss everyone so much!

O is for occupation:

Um … let’s say blogger and freelance writer.

P is for pet peeve:

Giving less than 100 percent.  If you’re going to do something, then you might as well do it right and give it your all.  Pre (Steve Prefontaine) said it best.

[source]

Q is for a quotation:

Besides that Pre quotation, I love this one from Dr. Seuss.

[source]

R is for random fact about you:

I consider Sanibel, FL my home away from home.

My grandparents have a condo there, so I’ve been going since day one.

S is for favorite healthy snack:

This week, I’ve been noshing on Chobani and carrot sticks.  Weird combo, but it works.

T is for favorite treat:

Anything chocolate, although I’m still dreaming about that red velvet cupcake from Brooklyn Cupcake.

U is for something that makes you unique:

I’m a tad obsessed with grammar, and I find these pins incredibly funny and witty.

V is for favorite vegetable:

Raw carrots and red peppers; steamed asparagus; roasted broccoli and mushrooms.

W is for today’s workout:

It’s been 11 days since my last rest day (whoops!), so I’m recovering today.  Although I really, really want to run.

X is for X-rays you’ve had:

Oh boy.  I’ve had a ton on my ankles, plus I’ve had a few MRIs on my right knee when I tore my ACL and meniscus.  

Y is for yesterday’s highlight:

Definitely my biking breakthrough.

Z is for your time zone:

Eastern Standard, baby.

Your turn:  Pick a letter or two and share your responses.  Or repost the entire survey!

10 Running Questions

Good morning—TGIF!  I kicked off the day with a quick run.  Even though I was itching to jog, my legs weren’t exactly on board.

Well, I should’ve seen this coming.  After all, I did take two yoga classes in 13 hours.  I wanted to run longer and farther, but I listened to my body, stretched for a few minutes at my turnaround spot, and skipped strength training today.  Oh, residual soreness from yoga.  Sigh.

Anyway, speaking of running, the lovely Gina tagged me in her 10 Running Questions survey, so now’s a great time to share my answers.

1.  Best run ever:
Oh, man.  That’s like asking a parent to pick their favorite child!  I started reading Mile Markers:  The 26.2 Most Important Reasons Why Women Run for Jamie’s virtual book group last night, and I’m going to steal my answer from author Kristin Armstrong:

I love running.  Give me a slow, plodding, painful run.  Give me a zippy, light-on-my-feet, springy morning.  Give me a downpour.  Give me a beast of a hill.  Give me a fartlek. (I can’t believe I just said that.) Give me a godforsaken track workout if you must.  But whatever you do, give me my run.

2. Three words that describe my running:
Necessary, therapeutic, and goal-oriented.  Again, I’m going to quote my girl Kristin Armstrong:

I am not a good runner because I am me; I am a good me because I am a runner.

3. My go-to running outfit is:
I’m a huge fan of Nike tempo shorts, unless I’m racing or running long, in which case I need Nike Pro Dri Fit ones.

[My go-to race apparel–post RUNapoolza]

If it’s warm outside, any Nike tank or tech t-shirt will do; colder temperatures call for Under Armour.

4. Quirky habit while running:
If I’m listening to music, then sometimes I’ll translate the lyrics—into French, Spanish, and/or Russian.  The accuracy is a little questionable.

5. Morning, midday, evening:
Any run is better than none, but there’s nothing like an early morning outing.

I love starting the day with a sweat session/me-time combo.  Plus, I get to check off something on my to-do list, and running in the morning gives me energy for the rest of the day.

6. I won’t run outside when it’s:
Being a tough Central New York girl, I will—and have—run in pretty much anything.  However, weather conditions including hail, severe wind chill, and thunderstorms call for running on the treadmill.

7. Worst injury—and how I got over it:
Knock on wood, I’ve never sustained a running-related injury.  However, the summer before my junior year of high school, I tore my ACL and meniscus during a summer league basketball game.  After undergoing reconstructive surgery and taking an aggressive approach to physical therapy, I played in my first game three months post-op. (The normal recovery time spans between six and 12 months.) Coming back from that injury was one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done; I experienced the importance of staying positive, driven, and relentless through rehab, and I discovered the only limits that exist are self-imposed.

[source]

Sorry, had to do it!

8. I feel most like a badass mother runner when:
I nail a tough workout.  There’s nothing like pushing yourself, coming out on top, and redefining your limits.

9. Next race is:
Good question!  I’m definitely doing a turkey trot on Thanksgiving, and right now, I’m eying a few November races. (Note to self:  Share those soon!)

10. Potential running goal for 2013:
I actually thought about this on my run.  I’m toying with the idea of doing the Brooklyn Half Marathon next year … and maybe a marathon.  I’m not sure how marathon training would affect/influence/fuse with triathlon training, so that’s totally still up in the air.  One day, though!

Your turn:  Share a few of your answers!

Tastes Like Childhood

Hey, hey—Happy Saturday!  Seeing as how I’m off completing my final triathlon of the season (sadness), and since I’m never one to pass up a survey, it’s a perfect time to fill in my answers.  Thanks for your post, Meghan!

Breakfast

1. Favorite cereal as a child?

Oh, I can’t pick only one.  For a special treat, my mom used to let my sisters and I get cereals like Cookie Crisp, Reese’s Puffs, and Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

Sugar-laden?  Yes.  Delicious?  Heck yes.

2. Coffee or tea?  With milk or without?

Every morning, I drink two cups of coffee to get my day going; it’s usually one of the best parts of my day.  Lately, I’ve been adding almond milk to my java, and I’m still obsessing over the delicious soymilk latte I got from Starbucks the other day.

3. The one food you eat most often at breakfast?

Easily eggs—so healthy and tasty.  And versatile, too.

I don’t care what that silly study said.

Lunch

1. Sandwiches are generally considered a “lunch food.”  If you had to choose between a grilled cheese and a peanut butter and jelly, which would you pick?

Hands down, peanut butter and jelly.  Back during my basketball days, I used to eat half of a PB&J before practice.  When I crave this combo today, I toast one slice of whole-wheat toast, top it with the good stuff, and fold it over; same great taste and a more appropriate serving size.

2. You can only put four ingredients in your salad (not including greens); what do you throw in the mix?  Additionally, which greens and dressing do you pick?

Picture this:  bed of spinach and arugula; grilled salmon; red peppers, snap peas, avocado, and apple slices.  I’d probably forgo dressing thanks to the creamy avocado and juice from the apple, or I’d opt for balsamic vinaigrette.

3. One food you can’t live without at lunch?

I tend to cycle through lunchtime staples—banana and PB, Chobani yogurt, carrots and hummus.  Right now, I’ve been eating a lot of peaches and apples.

‘Tis the season!

Dinner

1. It’s the end of the day.  You’re tired, hungry, and your fridge is empty.  If a fast food (from a chain) is your only option, where do you go and what do you order?

Saying Wegmans sushi is probably cheating, right?  I’d go with a black bean burrito bowl from Chipotle.

Yummy!  OK, moving on.

2. TV/computer on or off while you’re eating?

If I’m eating with my family, then all electronics get turned off.  However, if I’m noshing solo, I my TV or laptop will usually be on, especially if there’s a Yankees or Syracuse Basketball game on.

3. The one food you eat most often at dinner?

When I’m cooking for myself, I eat salmon easily four times each week.  Honestly, I could easily eat it every night and never get sick of it.  I also have tilapia and tofu regularly.

Dessert

1. Choose between these two American desserts:  cheesecake or apple pie?

Hmmm.  I don’t gravitate toward either, but I’d pick apple pie, especially now that it’s fall.

2. Choose between these two foreign desserts:  tiramisu (Italy) or flan (Spain)?

Ah, here’s the chocolate option.  Bring on the tiramisu!

3. Ice cream: cone or cup?

Give me chocolate in a cone.  YOLO.

Your turn, friends–share some of your answers!

15 Questions

Hi, everyone!  I’m en route to New York City for my big-girl interview and apartment hunting, and since huge fan of surveys—think The Simple Things A-Z and This or That?  Health and Fitness Style—I figure now’s a great time to follow suit and answer After the Ivy League’s questions.

1. Favorite ice cream flavor?

Chocolate will forever have my heart, but Ben and Jerry’s Phish Food FroYo is also my kryptonite.

[source]

It’s gotten to the point where I haven’t tried another flavor because Phish Food is always my go-to splurge.

2. Favorite dessert?

Anything chocolate. (Notice a trend?) My aunt makes delicious chocolate soufflés, my grandma bakes moist chocolate zucchini bread … I really don’t discriminate.  And if coffee or peanut butter makes an appearance, even better.

3. Favorite meal?

In terms of daily meals, breakfast.  I love sipping coffee first thing in the morning, and plus, breakfast foods like eggs are so versatile.

4. What did you major in?

Writing and Rhetoric.  Where are my grammar geeks?

5. Who is your best friend?

There will probably be a sister squabble if I don’t say Margaret and Ellen.

At college, I had a great group of core friends.

I miss them so much!

6. Do you have any siblings?

Yep—two younger twin sisters.

When we meet new people, my mom asks them to pick the twins; everyone always selects Margaret and me.

7. Single or taken?

Single … for now.

8. Favorite TV shows?

The Office, 30 Rock, Sex and the City, What Not To Wear, Say Yes To The Dress, and I love, love, love Downton Abbey.

[source]

Cannot wait for season three to start!

9. Where have you traveled?

Here’s a laundry list:  Quebec and Montreal, Canada and Paris, France with my high school French class (three separate trips); Cancun, Mexico with my family and London and Bath, England with my parents; I also studied abroad in London and traveled to Wales, Paris, and Alicante, Spain while across the pond.  Oh, and I also went to the Netherlands during high school as part of a People to People Sports Ambassador Program; I got to play basketball overseas, which was awesome.

10. Do you work out?

You bet!  Usually six times each week.

11. Currently reading?

I just started Miss Buncle’s Book by D.E. Stevenson.

12. Pets?

Zelda, our greyhound.

Also affectionately known as Zellie, Zeldo, Goon, and Good Girl.

13. Hobbies?

Aside from blogging and working out, I love reading, baking, cooking (when I’m in the mood).  I also bleed Orange.

Go Yankees!  Love my sports teams, too.

14. Mac or PC?

Apple girl always and forever.

15. Staples in your kitchen?

Lots of fresh produce—spinach, carrots, celery, red peppers, bananas, grapes (obviously), peaches, apples, the list is endless.  In terms of dairy, I always have eggs, almond milk, and Greek yogurt on hand, and my favorite protein sources include salmon, tilapia, tofu, tempeh, turkey, and chicken (when I’m feeling it).  Oh, and lots of PB and almond butter.

16. Past jobs?

During high school, I was the head counselor—I know, so official—of our winter basketball camp.  So much fun and so exhausting; teaching kids how to play the game is easier said than done!  After my first year of college, I worked at my dad’s office during the summer, and I’ve had a ton of (unpaid) internships in Syracuse and New York City.  I also wrote for athletic communications while in college.  Now I need a big-girl job!

It’s your turn:  pick your favorite question and share your answer!

This or That? Health and Fitness Style

I’m a fan of surveys—remember The Simple Things A-Z?—so when I saw Courtney’s post, I knew I’d write this blog entry, too.

1. Run/workout in the heat and humidity or freezing temps and snow?

Central New York sees both relenting heat and foot upon foot of snow, and I’d rather battle the winter elements than summer’s humidity.  I’ll warm up a bit when I run in the cold, but there’s no cooling down when it’s hot.

2. Have washboard abs or flat abs?

Hmmm, I’m going with combo here.  Flat abs look great, but definition shows you worked for ‘em!

3. Dr. Oz or The Doctors?

The Doctors.  Hello, Dr. Travis!

(source)

4. Cardio or strength?

Hmmm, toughie.  It depends on my mood, but I usually aim for five or six days of cardio each week and three strength training sessions.

5. Cravings: Protein or carbs?

Chocolate!  So carbs.

6. Jillian Michaels or Bob Harper?

I’m a huge Jillian fan, but I’d rather have Bob as my personal trainer.

7. Frozen Yogurt or Ice Cream?

Fro-yo as long as it’s chocolate.  I’d go for chocolate ice cream over vanilla frozen yogurt, though.

8. To train: Upper body or Lower body?

I default to upper body; I love sculpted arms and shoulders.

9. Protein powder or food with protein?

Whole foods that pack protein are ideal, but I have been on a protein smoothie kick lately.

10. Lunges or squats?

Tough one.  During my basketball days, I was a squatting queen (I maxed out at 235 lbs.), but I actually haven’t squatted with weight since. (I sometimes do body-weight air squats.) So lunges by default.

11. Sweet or salty?

Chocolate!  So sweet.

12. Workout attire: cute or comfy?

I’m going to have to go with a combo answer here, too.  When cute and comfy collide, it’s a great thing.

13. Body Pump or heavy lifting?

Well, I’ve never taken Body Pump, but I don’t exactly lift heavy easier.  I’ll pass.

14. Yoga or Pilates?

Yoga, although I only practice when I’m in New York City; I love Yoga Vida.

15. Nike or Adidas?

Nike, hands-down.

16. Running on the treadmill or outdoors?

I absolutely hate the dreadmill treadmill.  Unless the weather’s unfavorable (thunderstorm, ungodly windchill, etc.) or if I have a tempo run, I’ll run outside.

17. Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s?

Since Wegmans isn’t an option, then Whole Foods.  When I studied abroad in London, Whole Foods Kensington had “Thirsty Thursdays” where patrons paid five pounds and got to sample five appetizers and five wine pairings.  It was awesome!  Plus, I love the NYC Whole Foods stores, especially the Bowery location that included a shoutout to Geneva, NY.

18. Summer or Winter Olympics?

Based on my unrelenting Olympic fever, Summer Games.

20. Steamed veggies or roasted veggies?

Another combo answer:  When I’m cooking, I always steam veggies, but I love my mom’s roasted ones.

Your turn–share some of your answers!