Archive for August, 2010

It’s Always Better with a Buddy, Even Running!

August 31, 2010


I am probably the last person to write about running. I hate it. I run because I have yet to invest any money in any form of exercise and unfortunately my body does not lose weight automatically (wouldn’t that be nice). I used to do one lap around my neighborhood and call it a day. I soon found that hardly running a mile did next to nothing for me. I have since lengthened my route to an estimated 2.5/3 miles..still have yet to figure out the exact distance. A pedometer or one of those running watches would be helpful. Like I said, not a highly experienced runner.

My new longer route has become grueling for me to complete without stopping. Come the end of the run, I start to walk for a little, run for a little, walk for a little, run for a little.

I originally started this route with my friend, the cooking companion that I have mentioned before. We went running again last night for the first time in several weeks. When we were about 3/4 of the way done with the run, I turned to my friend and said ‘this is so much easier with you here’. I realized we were almost done with the run and I was all good to keep going. This was the first time all summer I completed the run without stopping one time. Additionally, the hill up to my old elementary school usually kills me, but last night it was just fine.

So I have several theories..

1st: Running with a buddy allows you to pace yourself. When I run by myself I tend to go too fast at first which obviously hinders my progress further down the route.

2nd: You have someone to distract you with conversation rather than focusing on how much longer you have to run.

3rd: Sometimes when I am listening to my music, I measure how much further I will run until I can stop by the length of a song. Additionally, my more favorite, upbeat songs tend to make me run at a faster pace, once again hindering my endurance. I have even created a playlist on my iPod named ‘Run, Becky Run’. It’s amusing that my distaste for running has reached the point where I must make a motivational playlist to get me out there running.

And last, but not least: having someone to work out with encourages one to keep going. When you run by yourself, you obviously have the power to stop at any time you please. While walking back to your starting point is better than doing nothing, it’s better to complete the course of your run. When you have a buddy, their mere presence encourages you to keep going!

That’s why today’s Boston and Hartford deals are great deals to help you achieve your fitness goals. Whether it is running your entire route without stopping or losing a certain amount of weight, these forms of group exercise are certainly going to set you on the right track!

But the buddy system really does work. It’s hard to deny the enjoyment other people provide while participating in activities. So even if you aren’t one for classes, training sessions, and gyms..grab a buddy and hit the road!

How About Some Cheese with That Whine?

August 29, 2010

Well really, nobody here is whining. But! I have recently discovered some unique and delicious cheeses that have become new favorites.

I love cheese and crackers. It leads the favorite food combo chart right up there with buffalo chicken and blue cheese dressing. Naturally these two things are not the healthiest dining options, but we all have our indulgences. We actually have a drawer in the refrigerator dedicated to all different kinds of cheese. My friends find it quite comical.

I recently learned about the website, igourmet.com. We sampled some igourmet cheese products last weekend. Everything from sharp cheddar to cheese with truffles. Absolutely delicious! After viewing the website that is based out of Philly, I learned they offer a wide variety of different specialties. I never thought about ordering cheese off-line, but this website may have just changed my opinion!

I also recently tried wasabi cheese and buffalo chicken cheese. If you haven’t picked up on my love for buffalo chicken quite yet, well then I’ll have you know, I obviously purchased the buffalo chicken cheese. I’m considering serving it with some crackers and maybe some blue cheese crumbles. It seems silly to serve cheese with cheese, but you can’t have buffalo chicken without blue cheese! I sure just said cheese a lot.

Have you recently come across any specialty cheeses that have stolen your taste buds? Please share! I love these crafty products and websites and want to learn about more.

My Smoothies Could Be a Little Smoother

August 27, 2010


Well not entirely..

But I do need help! Smoothies are a great way to start your day. They are super filling and quite yummy. Lately I’ve been using non-fat vanilla yogurt with strawberries and bananas or non-fat vanilla yogurt with all different kinds of berries. It’s been tasting rather tart though. I think I am going to try orange juice with mango, banana, and strawberries. I can’t take credit for the creation, Trident Book Store and Cafe on Newbury came up with it. It was so yummy though, I would love more than anything to have one right now.

Now I know for breakfast, you are supposed to have a serving of vegetables, fruit, and protein. I couldn’t imagine veggies in a smoothie, but maybe there’s some delicious combination I have no idea about.

Either way, I am looking for some quick, EASY, but yummy and healthy breakfast options. Smoothies are great because they’re so simple, but there’s only so many days I can consume all of that fruit before I need some real substance to start my day.

With October Just Around the Corner..

August 26, 2010

It’s that time of year. We no longer casually watch a Sunday afternoon game. We no longer have the game on in the background of what we are doing. This is the time when we get frustrated when they leave men on base or when a pitcher somehow just can’t handle throwing a simple throw over to first base for an easy out. It’s the time of year when we check our phones constantly to find out the score of the Yankees or Rays game. All to see if we are getting one step closer or one step further back.

We tend to blog about things to do in Boston, but maybe it is time to blog about the one thing all Bostonians know and love: the Boston Red Sox. I personally am a victim. I went to two games this week to continue celebrating my Dad’s birthday. We attended the Newport Winefest on Sunday to begin the celebrations followed by a very enjoyable dinner at 22 Bowens. First let me say that the Newport Winefest was absolutely fabulous as I am sure many of you can attest to. We all took our Newport Winefest CoupMe’s and had an amazing afternoon sampling different wines from all over the world. My Dad even convinced the Narragansett Beer table to give him their Narragansett Beer Bucket for free.

We then continued my Dad’s birthday at Fenway Park Monday night. Fortunately the rain held off. Met Dad again there on Tuesday night, but we spent all of our time inside Game On waiting for the game to get called. Headed back there last night to make up for Tuesday night to see the B-Team basically blow what could have been a huge win. Maybe if Beltre didn’t get thrown out by a rookie ump.

More importantly, my Dad is one of the many who lives and breathes Red Sox baseball. Yes, he loves all Boston sports, but the Red Sox have risen in importance high above the rest. This feeling has naturally passed on to his three children and I am sure he will instill his passion in his grandkids as well.

We were discussing the other day my first memory of obsessing over the Sox. I recall back during what I believe was the ’95 season when the Globe (..I’m pretty sure it was the Globe) had printed full page images of the current team. Mo Vaugh was placed right next to the door to my room. I had Wakefield, Tim Naehring, Jose Canseco, and Troy O’Leary hanging up all over my room. I remember my sister took John Valentin because she thought he was cute. I believe I was seven years old.

My Dad shared a story with me on Tuesday night as we were waiting for the rain to hopefully stop. I was around the same age of seven and he took me to a game with one of his clients from California. It was a situation similar to the one we ran into the other night. It was pouring, the game was likely to be postponed, but that time when I was seven, we were waiting inside Fenway instead of Game On. He told me that despite the rain, I kept walking down to the dugout to see what was going on and when the game would start.

I suppose I have become wiser over the years. I now opt to waiting inside nice and dry with a plate of delicious Nachos in front of my face instead of checking on the status of the game every so often.

So the question that I pose to my fellow Bostonians: What are your earliest Red Sox memories?

Top Five Tennis Tips for the Ultimate Couper

August 19, 2010


1.) Watch the ball and your CoupMe! It is vitally important to watch the ball until it makes contact with your racket. As for your CoupMe, watch that sucker print out then go on your way to enjoy that ultimate spa experience.

2.) Move your feet! You have to have quick feet. Don’t run aimlessly around the court with big steps and lose your balance. Take big steps toward the ball and as you approach make smaller, gallant strides to keep your balance while you hit the ball. As for your CoupMe, don’t walk to the business..RUN! As soon as you get to the business take slow strides as well..and wipe your face from all that sweat.

3.) Keep your head up after you serve. Keeping your head up and steady will help you watch the ball all the way to the point of contact. If you drop your head you will be off balance. (Watch out Andy Roddick!)

4.) Follow through after every swing. The most important aspect of tennis is your follow through. Make sure with your forehand you catch the racket with your oppositie hand as your follow through. As for your backhand, make sure your shoulders are perpendiclur to the net and the front of your body is facing either the fence or wall. (Depends where you play) As for your CoupMes, once you buy..follow through and go use that mind-blowing and tantalizing service you bought!

5.) The two most important points in Tennis are, 1.) Your serve- Without the ability to get your serve in play, there will be no match. 2.) The return of serve. If your opponent can’t return your serve you will never lose your service game. The two most important things to remember about CoupMe are 1.) Get in on the deal before we sell out! 2. ) Tell your friends! The more people you tell the more CoupMe credits you can use!

Overall Tennis is a freeing activity that can be enjoyed at any age and picked up at any point in life. Remember “Speed in tennis is a strange mixture of intuition, guesswork, footwork and hair-trigger reflexes.” E.S

~”J”, CoupMe

Sticky Notes + a Dose of Happiness

August 13, 2010

In a world where rude comments are tossed around daily, it’s definitely a breath of fresh air to hear something nice once in a while. An old coworker and I once discussed that if it was someone’s job to simply go around and compliment people, the world would be a much brighter place. It’s amazing how the simplest compliments can completely turn someone’s day around. And if that’s the case, why aren’t we tossing out these compliments more often? I’ve always been one to follow the motto: be careful of what you say and do because you never know what kind of day someone is having. That’s why (for the most part) I choose to be bright, happy and well…nice. There have been times where I’ve been told I’m even “too happy” or “too nice,” but I don’t think there is such a thing, and well…that’s just who I am.

That’s why I am 100% absolutely obsessed with these “Happy Notes” my sister got me for my birthday: “101 sticky note surprises to make you smile.” Now doesn’t that just sound lovely? Not only are sticky notes cool as is, but these little colorful gems actually have inspirational, “feel good” quotes on each one. From “Being With You is Having the Time of My Life” to “Most Problems Don’t Look so Bad After a Glass of LEMONADE,” these little puppies are sure to brighten anyone’s day, or get someone to smile at the very least. The best part? You can tear them out and stick them onto a friend’s desk, door, mirror or shirt to make their blah day a little bit brighter.

So go ahead, toss out a compliment…every one could use a little more love.

Wine, Food, Sun, and Family..What More Could I Ask For?

August 11, 2010

Today’s Boston deal is the event of the summer. I studied abroad in Florence my Junior year of college and ever since, I have fallen in love with wine. Since I spent four months in the Chianti region of the world, I happen to be a huge fan of Italian red wines. I have a current favorite: Vicchiomaggio San Jacopo Chianti Classico. But I must say I have broadened my horizons ever since my Florentine days. I have ventured in to the world of Malbecs and have even treated myself to a light glass of Chardonnay with dinner from time to time and much more.

My family has a house in Narragansett, Rhode Island. For those of you who are unfamiliar, it is probably the best place in the world. Well I guess Disney or Vegas takes the cake on that one, but it is one of my favorite places. My memories on Narragansett Town Beach go back as far as I can remember. Being tied up in the streets of Boston all summer can tend to be quite depressing when I realize how wonderful the beach and Rhode Island coast are. Hence why I cannot wait for this event! It is my Dad’s Birthday Weekend. I will be happy to be spending time with my family, but in an area and at an event that is truly in our taste. We are such foodies, if dining out was healthy, we would do it every night.

But First: Newport, Second: Wine, Third: Food, Fourth: Drinking wine and eating food while peering out into Newport Harbor. What could be better? Also did you see the line up for famous chef’s that will be in attendance? Hell’s Kitchen finalist Jason Santos will be there! Better yet, wine connoisseur, Jonathan Alsop, author of Wine Lovers Devotional, will be there leading wine seminars to any Grand Wine Tasting ticket holders. Jonathan is also the owner of the Boston Wine School, a popular outing for Bostonian wine lovers. He wines and dines you as you learn about the techniques and etiquette of wine. It is definitely a place I plan on trying in the near future, but I am excited to attend one of his many seminars in Newport for a sneak preview. He has a wide variety of seminars to choose from whether it’s Wine 101, The Best Wine’s You’ve Never Heard Of , or the Wine Tasting for the Complete Novice, I hope I am a wine expert by the time I leave Newport!

We are all way too busy and never take the time to enjoy truly good wine and delicious food with the people we genuinely enjoy spending time with. I personally cannot wait for the Newport Winefest and hope you are just excited as I am! Don’t wait and get your tickets for almost 1/2 off at CoupMe today.

~Becky, CoupMe

Embrace Your Inner Chef, And Win Some Mullah While You’re at it!

August 11, 2010

Do you pride yourself on making tasty apps and one-bite desserts? Are you looking for a way to let our your inner Rachael Ray? Don’t lie…we know you pretend you’re on your own celebrity chef television show when no one is watching (well, other than your dog Spot).

Well, maybe Whole Foods’ last chance contest is exactly what you need to embrace that inner chef! Today, Wednesday August 11th is the last day to enter into the exclusive “Contest for Small Bites,” hosted by Whole Foods Market. The challenge is to craft up a delectable “small bites” holiday recipe that costs no more than 50 cents per piece. 

Yes, we know what you’re thinking. “A holiday recipe? But it’s only just August…” Well, guess what? If your bite size goodies are selected, you’ll receive a $50 gift card and be featured in the December issue of The Whole Deal. 

So put on that snowman apron, whip out those oven mitts, and start cookin’! But hurry up, today is the LAST day to enter. Click here for more details on the contest and to post your recipe…and good luck!

~Rachel, http://healthblurbs.blogspot.com 

Eat Your Way to Your Summer Tan!

August 10, 2010

Tanning beds and tanning oil? Who needs them! Not when fruits and veggies and other carotenoid-rich foods can potentially be your new tanning remedy.  I recently discovered in Food Network’s Magazine, that by eating five daily servings of these tanning substances…you can appear to have tanner skin without any of the horrible skin cancer risks or wrinkling side effects! Foods like carrots, cantaloupes, apricots, and sweet potatoes may actually make you appear tanner. Not to mention, your tummy and legs will be grateful for the nutritious foods you are providing your body. So while your mother is pestering you because it looks like you’ve been spending too much time in the sun without sunscreen, you can just let her know you were eating healthy foods! Imagine that.

Any other tips to avoid the harsh damaging side effects of the sun?

~Becky, CoupMe

Scavenger Hunts…for Adults?

August 6, 2010

I’ve always found scavenger hunts to be a pretty good times. When I was a little kid, the Easter Bunny would send my sister and I on a hunt to find our hidden Easter baskets. Then senior year of high school, the entire class was sent off into groups to find things like street signs, condoms and certain underclassmen’s bras (but that’s a whole different story). Anywho, I’d pretty much given up on the concept of scavenger hunts; that is until I came across the People Scavenger Hunt, shining an entirely new light on the hunt.

WHAT? A scavenger hunt…for people? Yes, you heard that right my friend. Boston Event Guide’s hosting this unique, amusing event for all types: college grads, bachelors, single women, young professionals looking to mingle, older professionals looking to network…the list goes on and on. Once you check in with your discounted $10 CoupMe ticket  , you’ll be set off to people hunt. Whether your task entails making someone get down and do the Macarena or finding a generous someone to buy you a drink, it’s sure to be a hilarious, unforgettable time. And hey, it definitely beats searching for that golden Easter egg.