Why I Stopped Saying “I’m Busy” in 2018

Hello!

Today I wanted to talk about an intention I’ve been implementing in my life in 2018. I’ve been putting this off writing this because I want to make sure that I’m really diving deep into this but, in reality, I’m probably never going to be an expert on this, I just want to share my insight.
In 2018, I stopped saying the words I’m busy.
That’s it. Simple. I am no longer busy.

I will be the first to admit that I burned my fuse very quickly in college. After my junior year ++ only being 21, I found myself physically, emotionally and mentally drained. I filled up my plate way to soon, and found myself not wanting to do anything I loved. Stress took over my body and I did not react well. I’m pretty sure my mom was ready to get a phone call that I had a mental breakdown at any moment. At the end of 2017 ++ the end of fall quarter 2017, my body was covered in hives, and as I started to reflect on what needed to change for 2018, I knew how I managed my time and stress needed to change.

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So I started to journal what I wanted from 2018 for about a month, and through writing, I came up with I am no longer busy, I have all the time in the world, but I don’t have the energy to do it all. I thought about how I was scheduling my energy instead of my time. It all started to click and it started to make sense. I had a shift of how I started to think.

I threw time out of the window, and began to start thinking about how I viewed my energy. My energy started to look like a bank account. I have only so much to spend, so what am I going to spend it on and how am I going to spend it. The same when I was spending too much money, I would quickly run out of money, and of course it’s the time that an emergency would arise and I would have to scatter for money—I didn’t have a savings account for my energy. I made a list of just three things I wanted to focus on—school/career, CHAARG, and myself. These are the three things that take up most of my energy and what I want to spend my energy on. How I spilt this up is maybe a blog post for another day.

My perception on the word busy has changed. I became an ultimate believer that if anyone wanted to do anything, no matter what they have going on they will make time for it. I often used the word busy, because I was so burned out. I didn’t really know how to say no to something, because I was embarrassed at the fact that I was too tired to do anything, and to be that looked like failure. Before the rise of the wellness community of Instagram, people didn’t really post when they were taking a break or slowing down. The #girlbosses that I looked up didn’t seem to take a break, and they were very successful, so I need to go go go to become successful.

Since my perspective has changed, I have been able to be a more engaged student, a stronger leader, a present friend. My brain fog has cleared. My stress and anxiety have decreased dramatically and I’m finally getting a full night’s sleep. I feel a deeper connection to my highest self. Every day I journal the things I want to get down, what do I want to do that feed into my higher goals, and am really mindful of the things that the universe presents throughout the day.

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I do have to admit, I haven’t perfected this. It’s finals week at my school, I’m sick, have low energy, and sleep deprived. I am mindful of it still, every minute I can I still work on trying to have all the energy I can have. Some days I still struggle to find the balance. It’s always about the little steps that you can take everyday to live a healthier life.

Hasta la próxima,
Anais

 

A Miami Girl’s Guide to Winter

Usually, when I tell people that I’m from Miami, the first thing they ask me is why would I leave the beautiful Miami weather for the cold Chicago winters? First off, have you been in Miami really anytime of year?? It’s hot, humid, and I am sticky all the time, not cute.  In reality, I’ve gotten really lucky with the mild winters, I like to think I brought some warmth to Chicago, but others call that Global Warming. With the temperatures already dropping to a nippy negative 15 degrees I know this winter is going to be a slap in the face! Fortunately, I’ve been over-preparing myself since the first time my Abuela told me to PONTE UN SUETER in 68 degree Miami weather. Over the past few years, I’ve been collecting a few tips and tricks to surviving the winter.

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  1. THE ESSENTIALS: VITAMIN D AND WATER

We’ll start with the boring stuff–but probably the most important one. During the winter, you are not being exposed to the sun as often and even when it’s sunny the rays are not as intense; the days are shorter, most days are gloomy and dull, and if you are anything like me leaving the house is very difficult. The sun is a great source of Vitamin D, so when we aren’t getting any is when we start our bodies to feel weaker and our moods start dropping. I recommend taking a capsule of Vitamin D everyday. It is great for your immune system and can help getting through the winter months.

Water also becomes so much more important in the winter, of course, you should be drinking water year round, but the winter is so dry and dehydrated that a little extra water makes all the difference.

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  1. DIFFERENT SOURCES OF LIGHT                                                                                      The sun is out for what feels like 7 minutes of the day, and being deprived from sunlight is what also gives us that blues feelings. Recently I got a Himalayan Salt Lamp, and it has made all the difference. It helps clear the air in the room, and has made sleep so much better. It gives my room a little bit of brightness when the sun starts to go down at 3 PM.

The happy light is also a great source of additional lighting, which helps elevate mood levels and  sleeping through the night.

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  1. CREATE A HOME AWAY FROM HOME

This is for the people who now live in a colder environment than what they grew up in. In the winter is when I feel the most homesick. All my family and friends are in the warmth, by the beach and as much as I love living in Chicago, home is always home in my heart.  So, I started to do little traditions that remind me of home and overall make my soul happier. I make more cafecito, I listen to my favorite Spanish tunes, and ask my parents to send me my favorite snacks. I try to make the effort to call home more often and talk to my family. Any reminder from home that keeps me from hopping on a plane and moving back home is helpful.

  1. SURROUND YOURSELF WITH HAPPY PEOPLE

This is a given for anytime of the year, but I think it is especially important for the winter time to surround people who lift you up and brighten your day when the sun is not shining too bright. The winter time can feel very isolating as everybody wants to stay in every weekend, the weather can affect people’s mood, and simply getting out of bed can be very hard. Grab a friend to hit the gym with, or plan a dinner party in your own home. Keep the laughter and smiles going all winter long.

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  1. SWITCH UP YOUR WORKOUT ROUTINE                                                                        Going to the gym can get so boring after the second time. It’s too icy outside to run, workout classes are so fun, but they can add up and get expensive, but working out is as important in the winter months  as it can help you beat the winter blues, and can even help you stay warm longer. This winter I’m working on trying more non-traditional workouts. A few weeks ago a friend and I went rock climbing for a challenging upper body workout, trampoline parks for a invigorating   cardio workout, and ice skating! This way you are still getting the workout you wanted, but not dreading the time you are about to spend at the gym.  IMG_3791.jpg
  1. EXPLORE YOUR CITY

A big city like Chicago is bustling with activities that a fun but most importantly inside. Cities are filled with so many cool museums, and often are giving free day passes to residents during the winter. As a student I’m always sitting at the library get homework done, or writing a blog post, and sitting in the same space can make me go a little stir-crazy, but I use the winter time to go and try new coffee shops, [I recently tried the WormHole in Chicago definitely a new favorite!] This way I’m changing up my location while trying new places and supporting local business! Don’t live in a big city? Maybe try visiting a local major city or a staycation at a nearby hotel. Planning a mini-vacay will help relieve the cabin fever with the excitement of visiting a new place.

I know the winter can be rough, but you will get through it! Spring time will be here in no time! What are some of your favorite winter activities? Let’s chat!

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Sending you warm love,
Anais

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Cafecito To Go: Nicaragua

Hey there!

These past few weeks have been crazy busy! I finished another hectic quarter of school, celebrated Thanksgiving with my roommate and her family, and then hopped on a plane and traveled to Nicaragua for two weeks!

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I went to Nicaragua with Global Brigades on a Public Health and Medical brigade. Global Brigades is student lead organization that works with communities in rural areas in Central America to help build create sustainable communities.  Colleges and universities from around the world go to countries to volunteer in Medicine, Public Health, Water, Business, Human Rights, Dental, or Engineering Brigades.

My trip to Nicaragua was a beautiful experience. I am so grateful for the time I spent in the country, the passionate and hard working people  I met, and the wisdom they passed down to me what every single one of them taught me.. We danced in the rain. We ate too many plantains. We played “landa” (Spanish for tag) and sang Suavemente from the tops of our lungs.  I honestly don’t think I will ever be able to fully put into words my experience.

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Throughout the trip I did document what I and I wanted to share it with you! Nicaragua is a beautiful country, and you ever have the chance to visit, I HIGHLY recommend going.  

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We stayed in the city Matagalpa and I must say, this city knows how to party. Stores played music every night and the streets were constantly flooded with people.  

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Kiss Me is a chic ice-cream shop in the city, delicious unique favors from tres-leches, lavender, and peanut butter-banana!

My little cafecito heart was flourishing in Nicaragua. So much great coffee, so little time. I had probably 4 cafecitos a day and I was in heaven. My favorite coffee shop was Seleccion Nicaraguense, it was such a comfortable and homey spot with a beautiful patio. I of course had to take a few bags of coffee home.

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Traditional Nicaraguan breakfast; always with a side of coffee.

When visiting the town of Las Curenas, the women gave us a tour of their Ceramica Negra (Black Pottery) business. All their pottery is handmade by the women who live in the community. From mugs and vases, to wind chimes and animal statues, all their poetry was so beautiful. The hard work that the women put into their business was so inspiring.

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The nature side of me was so excited when we visited Selva Negra, an eco lodge and cafe right outside of Matalgapla. If you ever visit Nicaragua, I suggest spending the afternoon or even a few days there! We hiked around the property, watched a beautiful sunset and then stayed for treats afterwards.

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Lastly, my favorite part of the whole experience was working with Global Brigades, other DePaul students, and all the locals I met. Each of them inspired me to go back home and do MORE, live MORE, laugh MORE, give MORE. It was a humbling experience to work alongside people who just truly cared to better their community.

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Until the next cafecito,
Anais

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Trader Joe’s Essentials

Over the week, I posted a poll on my instagram story on which grocery store you liked better, Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s. The results are in; Trader Joe’s was favored, and that brings me to my post today– My top 10 favorite Trader Joe’s products. TJ’s is basically heaven on earth, and my best friend Katie and I’s ideal hangout spot (no really, we go grocery shopping together all the time). I shop at Trader Joe’s for all my dry foods, spices, meats, and last minute meal options. To be honest, I don’t usually buy my produce at Trader Joe’s, I prefer to buy it at Whole Foods, and I am not the biggest fan of frozen foods. 

Without further adieu, here are my 10 favorite things at Trader Joe’s Top 10 Products:

  1. Clarified Butter (ghee)IMG_3051

    Ghee is an awesome alternative to butter often used in ayurvedic medicine, but that ishhh can get expensive. Trader Joe’s sells this container of clarified butter (similar to ghee, but differs in production) for ONLY $3.99, that’s a steal! I love using this for sauteing vegetables, and in my bulletproof coffee! Clarified butter is so much easier for your digestive system, and perfect if you have a dairy sensitivity.  

  1. Nutritional Yeast

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Cheese and I have a love/ hate relationship. I love cheese, but cheese hates me. I think we can all agree that pasta is not complete without a sprinkle (or 3 cups) of cheese on top. Well, my stomach truly disagrees, but then the Trader Joe’s gods blessed me with nutritional yeast and my life was forever changed. And I know you can get nutritional yeast, but have I mentioned the amazing prices at TJs??? It is high in Vitamin B, and has a great cheesy flavor, honestly I think it’s magic.

  1. Seasonings IMG_3047

I don’t have a favorite seasoning to share, but I think Trader Joe’s is the place to buy all your seasonings. They have a wide variety from your basic salts and peppers, to chili lime to everything bagel seasoning all at a reasonable price. My current favorite right now is the everyday seasonings. I love using it on chicken and turkey, it’s packed with flavor, and makes cooking meals so fast and easy.

  1. Organic Brown Rice Pasta Fusilli IMG_3032

Being in college means that I naturally eat pasta 3-4 days a week (eating pesto tortellini as we speak). Eating white pasta wasn’t doing me justice, so I was on the hunt for a pasta alternative. I tried a differnt a version of this before, and it just clumped together and it was no bueno, but I really like the fusilli. I can eat bowls of pasta for days and feel less guilty about it! Top it off with some tomato basil marinara and nutritional yeast, and you got yourself a meal.

  1. Spinach Flour TortillasIMG_3041

I can not say enough about these tortillas. They are so good and fluffy and make a great tortilla for breakfast eggs, and I love using them for personal pizzas.

  1. 8 minute Steel Cut OatmealIMG_3038

I love a good oatmeal, but I hate how long steel cut oatmeal can take. And I can hear your thoughts “Anais, why not try overnight oats?” I have and it didn’t work and I was very upset and hangry, so I’m moving on. This oatmeal cooks so fast and makes breakfast in the morning super simple and delicious.

  1. Well Read California Red WineIMG_3044

Where my wine lovers at?!?!?! I saw someone talk about this wine over Instagram, and after I heard the person said 7$, I was sold. The wine is a California Blend, and is sooo good. So naturally, wine has sulfates, but most wines have added sulfates in it. This wine is organic and cheap and makes my little bougie heart sing. The wine is also 12.5% alcohol by volume, and after one glass I am singing Pony by Ginuwine planning out my the first SoulCycle class I’m going to teach.

  1. Sunflower Seed SpreadIMG_3058

This is for alll my nut spread lovers. Sunflower seed spread changes the game. I like to buy mine unsweetened, so I can’t vouch for the sweetened, but this stuff is so good. It is on the saltier side so it’s a great pairing with a blueberry bagel, or very sweet apples. The best part about it is if you do want it on the sweeter side, you can control how much sugar goes in it.  

  1. Mandarin Orange chicken 

(I ate all of it before I could get a picture…oops)

Okay, I know I said I didn’t like the frozen foods, but I will make an expectation for orange chicken. This chicken is soooo good, omg, my mouth is watering just thinking about it. At my Trader Joe’s it was voted Best Frozen Food, so you know it’s legit. It’s nice for days I don’t want to meal prep and want something quick. I recommend mixing in some rice and sauteed veggies and bam, you have a great meal!

  1. Organic Coconut AminosIMG_3063

This is the newest addition to my kitchen, but I am loving it so far. I was hesitant to buy it, but I used it to cook some peppers and mushrooms, and I loved the taste. It feels like I’m at Benihanas and the chef is making a heartbeat out of of fried rice. It has a very similar taste to soy sauce, and I’m really excited to try new recipes with it.

I know this list is a little different as Trader Joe’s has so many different meals and treats, but this is what works best for me and my meal routine! I cannot live everyday without these essentials  in my kitchen.

What are some of your favorite TJ favorites? What should I pick up next time I’m grocery shopping?

Sending you love + light,
Anais

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New Blog, Who Dis?

IMG_7911.jpgHello friends!

Call TMZ the rumors are true, THE FASHIONISTA IS DEAD. That bishhh had to go…just kidding!! Her love for blogging and writing are still here, but she needed a makeover. Welcome to “Cafecito in Chicago”, my new blog that’s about anything and everything. Lifestyle, fashion, wellness, fitness, college, welcome to all sides of me.
Let’s backtrack, over the past year I have been working on being the best version of myself. To be completely honest, I love who I have become and am still building to be (no shame for self love). Along with my self growth, I’ve been working on my blog and my Instagram platform. I was left feeling like the title “The Fashionista Says” did not truly represent me. I wanted to show more of myself on my blog and incorporate much more than the surface things-fashion and beauty, but dig deeper. I want to use my platform as a way to share all the things I love, and all the lessons I am learning as I go through my 20’s.

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So how did Cafecito in Chicago come to be? I wanted my new blog name to be a complete reflection of myself. First Cafecito- which translates to little coffee is basically a shot of Cuban espresso, which I have been drinking since I was probably five, it’s most likely the reason I wanna crawl in a hole when I don’t have a cup of coffee. Drinking cafecito is a popular social activity in the Cuban culture, it’s an invitation to come drink coffee and just chat about life, similar to how I want my blog to be. Growing up in Miami, I have so many vivid memories of my abuela turning on the espresso machines, or as we like to say cafetera, as soon as she thought somebody was going to come over. So just like my abuela invited loved ones with her cafecito, I’d extend an invitation with mine, let’s chat through a metaphoric shot of espresso.

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Now the Chicago part, I currently attended university in Chicago, Illinois, and moving to the city has probably been the best decision I have ever made, and I know that this is exactly where I need to be. I know I may not live in Chicago forever, but this city is where the journey of my 20’s started, and only less than 2 years, it already has been a rollercoaster and I cannot wait to see how it continues to shape me over the next few years. So this is my ode to you Chicago.
On my blog, you can still read through all my old blog post, I did not want to get lost through cyberspace, and heck– I worked really hard on them for you to enjoy. I am so excited to continue writing and sharing through this blog. You basically now have the key to my soul, and I barely open up on a first date, so this babe this is commitment. Thank you for everyone who I have talked my ear off about launching this blog, has helped me with pictures, the logo, and everything in between. Thank YOU for reading and sticking around.

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Salud,
Anais

Radiating Self Love: My Self Care Rountine

I thrive off of being busy, it keeps me from lounging in bed all day, so I get to  feel my best and most productive. I often fill my schedule with sweat seshes, work, CHAARG, coffee dates, and the occasional spontaneous adventure. As you can see I try to spend very little time at home, but there does come a time where I need to be alone and just take care of myself. I feel like we get so caught up in work, friends, family, and school that we forget to take care of the most important person; ourselves. I believe self-care is essential to be the best version of yourself, so I’m here to tell you that it is totally okay to be selfish from time to time. Today, I wanted to share my self-care routine and how I take care of my well being even on the busiest of weeks.

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  1. I say NO to all plans

To be honest, this one is hard for me, since I always want to be with friends and live life to the fullest with them, but I have to sallow the FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out), and put myself first. Throughout the day I try to stay away from my phone and any kind of social media like Snapchat so I don’t feel the urge to accept or make plans. Can’t make any plans if you don’t know of any plans.

  1. I Organize My Room

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been stressed out because my room was not organized. I am definitely not a neat freak, but not a slob either so every now and then I just reach my mess limit. I’ve read multiple articles that say a clean room can reduce stress, and clear your mind. When you de-clutter your space you are able to de-clutter your mind, be more productive, and overall happier. So, I take my time, blast Kendrick, and start to pick up my room, make the bed, and organize everything. Sometimes, I’ll venture to the kitchen and wash the dishes clean the counters, and if I have enough for a load, I’ll do laundry. I always feel so much better when its done cause not only is my space picked up but I was able to finish something leaving me with a great feeling of accomplishment.

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  1. Yoga, Reading, Journaling, Mediating

I like to do one or a few of these things on my away day. Granted, everyday I journal and mediate, but on these particular days I’ll spend more time doing it. I personally like to write in my Five Minute Journal, but on self-care days, I like to free write; write a gratitude list, get in touch with what is and isn’t bringing me joy. Sometimes life is so busy and we are moving a million miles an hour that we forget our mindful practices. Usually my rest is after a few days of intense workouts, so I’ll stretch out my body with some light yoga—or even go to a yoga class.

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  1. Pamper

I love “me” days that come with a little R and R. I try to take the extra time to do a face mask, a hair mask, or paint my nails. Anything that makes me feel a little fresher and ready to tackle the end of the week. Lately, I have been loving the Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay—omg this stuff sucks everything from your pores. As for a hair mask I’ve been loving the L’Oreal Color Vibrancy Ultra hair mask—if keeps my balayage[what I have left] fresh.

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Other products I love:
Lush Cup O’Coffee
Shea Moisture African Black Soap Problem Skin Facial Mask
TonyMoly I’m Real Red Wine Mask Sheet

I can not express enough how much I think self care is important. Even it’s for an hour or two, once a week, set some time for yourself to recharge and so healthy for your mental health. GIRL, TREAT YO SELF, YOU DESERVE IT!!

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What’s do you include in your self care routine? Let’s talk and share our self love!

I love YOU,
Anais

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13.1 Miles Later: 5 Things I Learned from Training for a Half Marathon

On July 16th, 2017, I ran my first half marathon; a long road of hard work leading to a 13.1 mile run around the beautiful city of Chicago. (since then I’ve been on a runners high leaving me wanting more. Before I decided to take this journey I could barely run two miles, it was definitely a workout that I avoided at all cost, so needless to say I had no clue how to start except of course run.

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  1. Buy the right shoes
  2. This is the first thing I learned, and I’ll save you the foot ache. I kept putting off buying new shoes for a “treat yourself day” but it soon turned into a necessity for success. At the beginning of my training I was running in 2 year old Nike free runs that fit my feet just right. I ran 4 miles in my free runs and my feet began to swell up, it was awful. It’s important to keep in mind that your shoes are an investment and spend what you need too [my wallet and I cried a little too].My tips for buying news shoes: go a half to a full size up, whatever makes you feel comfortable. REMEMBER:YOUR FEET WILL SWELL UP.
  3. –Go to a professional and get fitted; I went to Fleet Feet, and the lady who worked analyzed how I walked and ran and found the perfect fit for me.
  4. –Don’t settle; as a college student spending the amount of money I did on my shoes can hurt for a few days, but you can’t run if you don’t care of your feet, so spend the extra few dollars for a fitting shoe that’ll last.
  5. I personally run in Brooks Ravenna 8IMG_2021IMG_2017 2.It is going to take time to figure out what works best for you
  6. To be honest, I feel like I still don’t know what exactly works for me when it comes to having a running plan and what/when I should eat. For a long time, I was struggling to prep for my runs—when should I run, what should I eat before my run, how long before my run, should I eat anything at all, should I take energy supplements, and the list goes on and on. Eventually, I took a deep breath and detached myself from that stress and just tried new things every week. Some techniques worked better one week than the other, some did not work at all. As much as I wanted to hear the perfect piece of advice from all my former running friends, I had to realize that did not exist because different things work for different people. We are all built differently and have completely different body types. Its most important to see listen and understand what your body needs, everyday is different so look within and do what works best for you on that particular day.
  7. IMG_13083. Do not center your life around your plan, center your plan around your life
  8. This lesson is one I learned the hard way, and I want to help prevent the burnout I went through multiple times throughout my training. Things do not always go exactly as planned. Unexpected things happen, and life gets in the way. I would constantly be upset with myself if I did not run or cross train one day. I found myself a few weeks off schedule, and training to catch up within a week. It wasn’t until an unexpected family emergency that I told myself I needed to slow down, take a breath and not be so hard on myself. Even at that moment, it was hard for me to come to the realization that my body is stronger than I think and I can keep it up. I ran my seven-mile-long slow distance run two weeks after my six miler, and my body could keep up. Running is definitely a mental sport, and I did not truly understand that until my training. I had missed so many runs, but guess what? I still ran all 13.1 miles and I survived!IMG_0862
  9. 4. Are you being lazy or coming up with a legit excuse?
  10. This lesson ties together with number 3. I am currently a full-time student, I have a part-time internship, a job, somewhat of a social life, and oh that fun activity others seem to do, sleep. Sometimes I did not physically have time to run, other times, I found myself awake at 6:30 am telling myself the night before I was going to run, but I was laying in bed thinking of excuses of why I shouldn’t run that day. In these times I had to check in with myself and my body. I had to remember why I started training in the first place. Then I asked myself how did I feel today, was I tired, was I sore, or was I just being lazy? Those days that I was unsure about running are the days I had the best runs and felt amazing. So, listen to your body, remember why you started and make the best out of your day [that may mean running 6 miles or taking a rest day]IMG_1202.JPG
  11. 5. Put the computer down and go RUNI found myself meticulously searching websites, videos, and blog post for all the tips and tricks on how to make the best of this half marathon for longer than I’d like to admit.. I’m sure we are all guilty of doing this, but the fact is that it will not help you become a stronger runner. Go out and run, cross train, eat the right foods, sleep, drink plenty of water, get into a routine, remember how far you have come, and that will help you become a stronger runner.

    Thank you to all my friends and family who supported me throughout my training. I am planning on running my next really soon!IMG_1413.JPG

  12. What are your best running tips? Share them in the comments below!
  13. See you at the finish line,
  14. Anais

 

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Review: Girlfriend Collective Leggings

Hi friends,

I will be the first to admit, I probably spend way too much time on Facebook [I’m working on it, but its really hard when your mom is writing on your wall three times a day and your best friend is tagging you in all the wine memes]. But if your internet browser is anything like mine, you get A LOT of clothing related ads, so I was intrigued when I saw an ad for free, yes FREE, leggings.

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I was skeptical at first, I wanted to trust the ad, but I knew if I was going to fill up my inbox with spam or have to pay anything and not received what I wanted, I was going to be very upset at myself. But my boss over at CHAARG told me how she ordered a pair and she was in love. They were her favorite pair of leggings.

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Okay, I have to be honest, the leggings are not completely “free.” There was a $20 shipping fee which to most sounds absurd, but I needed to get my hands on these leggings. So roughly ~10 weeks later, I received my leggings.

Oookay, let me slow down and give you some background information. Girlfriend Collective is an eco-friendly brand who makes these clothes out of water bottles. There goal is to try to get less materials into landfills. They ship from Vietnam, and thrive off of being free-trade and only use recycled material. If you want to read more about their mission head to their website!

So about 10 weeks went by and finally my leggings had arrived! I was so excited to wear them, I changed into them the second I got home! The leggings I got were the Black Core Leggings in Medium.

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My first impressions were how soft they were; it almost was like I was not wearing pants. They were lightweight and easy to move around in. My concern though was that they were not petit friendly. I am 5’1’’ and so finding pants that fit me at my waist nicely and don’t scrunch on the ankles can be difficult for me to find. These pants are very high on my waist-which I personally like-but do really scrunch on the bottom.

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As for sweating in them, I did three of my normal routines workouts in them—SoulCycle, run, and yoga. Soulcycle was the most challenging to workout in because it’s the where I sweat the most. I wasn’t uncomfortably dying, but I did feel stiffer than usual. I ran in these when it was still 40-60 degrees, and the compression of the leggings did help keep me warm and run comfortably. As for yoga, I don’t recommend these for hot yoga but for a non-heated class they are great.  I mostly like to wear my leggings for strength training days, and running errands.

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Overall, I LOVE my Girlfriend Collective leggings. They are so worth it, and worth the market price. The classic leggings are now avaible for pre-order!

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IMG_3424IMG_3429Till next time girlfriend,
Anais

What am I wearing:
Shirt: Spiritual Gangster
Shoes: Nike Trainers

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I’m Not to I Am

It was an early morning when I was scrolling through the CHAARG blog and stumbled upon a post written about Elisabeth Tavierne running the Chicago Marathon. In that moment, I decided I WANT TO RUN A MARATHON. Running definitely wasn’t my favorite workout but something in me wanted to run a race. Mind you, I got B’s in PE because it took me forever to run a mile.

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I played around with ideas of which race I wanted to run and when. I kept psyching myself out, saying I wouldn’t be able to do it, or made some other lame excuse of why I couldn’t run it. When talking to my friends and colleagues, 98% of the time someone would say “well I’m not a runner.” That thought bothered me. Are we born as something or do we chose to not be that thing?

I finally thought to myself, how can I change my ‘I’m nots’ and ‘I can’ts’ to ‘I will be’ and ‘I’m determined to’? I’ve always feared pushing myself out of my comfort zone, but at the end of the day what do I have to lose?  We aren’t born as athlete, yogis, painters, or anything at all, really, but we can build ourselves to be what we want to be.

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After all the questioning, I am proud to announce that I am officially running the Chicago Rock and Roll Half Marathon in July. I have been training for months, but it’s officially crack down time, and I want to bring my readers along for this crazy ride. It hasn’t been an easy one, but I am determined to finish.

Over the past few months, I have been training through a custom running program. It is a mixture of running three times a week, taking SoulCycle classes, and doing lots of yoga! I want to bring my readers along as an accountability check. If I post it on the internet, it’s legit, right? That’s how this works?

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I am not the fastest runner or the strongest person, and 98% of the time I don’t know what I’m doing, but I just run and hope for the best. With this post, I hope to inspire at least one person to turn something they think they are not into an ‘I am’.

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So if you follow me on any form of social media, or know me personally, ask me how my training is going, if I’ve been getting enough carbs, or how much water I’ve been drinking that day. I need the push!
What is something you’ve psyched yourself out from doing? This is your sign to go out and conquer that thing.

If anyone is running any of the  Rock and Roll races in Chicago, let me know! I would love to cheer you on!

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Catch ya at the end of the finish line,
Anais

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Photo courtesy of Marin Scott

305 ’til I Die: A weekend in Miami

A few weekends ago, a friend and I decided to pack our chanxs and take a post-birthday trip to my hometown of Miami, Florida. Even though the weather was finally warm in Chicago, I was excited to go home for the weekend to drink strong coffee, eat my weight in Cuban bread, and of course, see my dog… and family, too, I guess.

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I took this trip to take in every aspect of home. I know you might be thinking, why would you move from beautiful Miami to cold, windy Chicago? Well, let’s backtrack a few years.

When I was in high school, all I wanted to do was leave. I was more than ready to pack my bags and start a new adventure. I felt that I had my future planned out for me if I stayed. I would go to college with the same people I met growing up, I would live with my grandparents until I got married, and maybe be able to drive the car, but I was stuck in this big city in the same old routine. I craved ambiguity and freedom. I counted the days until graduation, then I hopped on a plane as quickly as I could to create a new home for myself. I was excited for my future!

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It’s funny how life works, because I tend to miss Miami all the time. Ever since I left home, I have really gained a sense of appreciation for Miami. Miami is a place like no other — a true melting pot of cultures. I appreciate the smell of espresso, the warmth of the sand on my toes, and even the traffic on I-95 at 4 pm.

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I often catch myself wishing that I had appreciated home more while living there. I wished that I had gone to the beach more, eaten at more trendy, overpriced cafes, and taken advantage of free laundry. But, if it wasn’t for my eagerness to leave, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

Miami has shaped me into the woman I am today and everyday I carry it on my sleeve. I keep the pero like and (embarrassingly enough) the supposabley i n my vocabulary. I will always get excited when a Pitbull song come on and 3:05 is always cafecito time.

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During my last trip, I hit up all my favorite spots. I took a stroll through Coconut Grove and the Barnacle State Park. I stopped by Versailles for Cuban sandwiches, mojitos, and pastelitos (if you are ever in Miami, best Cuban food hands down–don’t tell my Abuela). What’s a trip to Miami without brunch in Wynwood walls? I took advantage of finally being 21 and had drinks in Brickell and danced the night away in South Beach. And of course, I snuggled my dog tight and hugged my Abuela even tighter.  

No matter how crazy life gets and where I may move, Miami will always be in my heart and it will always be my home. My visits home always come when I need them most, and the universe always brings me back to the sunshine.  

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Until the next Miami,
Dale,
Anais

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