Eat, Drink and be Happy!

Since I have a long weekend off classes and most of my Midterms are finally over, I am taking the time to try out some new restaurants, meet friends for dinner or a coffee brake or go out with my Mother for lunch. I thought, I`d share some pictures on what I indulged in recently, and what inspired me to challenge my cooking skills.

At Déryné, a cute Bistro in Budapest, all the girls ordered wines or fancy cocktails and lemonades. I liked the tiny decoration.

I had a Ceasars Salad without chicken, because I`m a vegetarian.

The Burger my friend had looked delicious, but it must have been really hard to eat.

The next day, we went to Budapest`s first and new Hard Rock Cafe located right in the city center. We went for a sour and a sweet lemonade. Both were really good, though I preferred the sour one.

I ordered really great grilled veggie sandwiches. These were delicious with salad, tomato, mushrooms, zucchini and I`m probably forgetting something else. It came with a side salad and dressing of my choice, but was huge anyways.

My Mother ordered this great salad. It`s salad leaves, cranberries, apples, strawberries, chopped chicken, oranges, avocado and mango. The dressing was something sweet with balsamic. Definitely easy to make at home and a great alternative to normal veggie salads. My favorite part were the cranberries.

Finally, I ended the day with an iced green tea at Starbucks. Perfect when we have 27 degrees celsius at 7pm.

All pictures via my Instagram @with_anna.

Neutral Summer Clothing Haul

Today I went to the city center to enjoy the 30 degrees celsius and go browsing the summer collections. There were a lot of brights, a lot of pastels, but also a lot of beiges, whites, creams.

I intended to look for some lace shorts and a print shirt, but didn`t like the fit of any of the shorts I tried on and the prints of the shirts. Instead, I settled for high waisted shorts, a cap-sleeved shirt and a two-tone straight-cut dress.

A fashion rule I learned for myself was that I like these cap style sleeves on shirts when they are supposed to be buttoned up high. If however the shirt is long sleeved, I will prefer a deeper neckline or maybe a boat neck. Showing off and hiding. Here is what I got:

The Importance of Visualization and Goals

The top of the rock. Read, how I got there!

After Monday evening`s spinning class, the instructor asked us to slow down and close our eyes. He said: “think about your workout today, think about this day. Have you reached your goals? If you did not, what happened? What can you change next time? How can you improve, what did you like or hate? ..”.

I know visualizing and goal setting are very important, but it was then, that I experienced how great it could be. To be honest, I did not have goals for that day other than getting it over with (which is so bad because you should make something good out of every day).

I know, also, that there are probably a lot of situations where it is okay not to have a plan or a goal. There may for example be a run where you just go out and do it. Don`t think, just go.

What happened? Ever since the spinning class I started thinking what I wanted to achieve. I also started thinking about achieving, reaching my little goals in life. Let me give you an example:

This morning I literally only had minimal time to push in a workout. I knew that my normal, boring round was not going to work. So I headed to a hill, that I haven`t been to in months. To be honest, I have not even done hill work since probably sometime last year or very early this year. I drove to the foot of the hill and decided what I wanted to do. My goal was to get up to the top, though I knew my workout time was limited. I started off, a good playlist by my side and felt really strong. And then I made it to the very top. And what I got was amazing: I had the greatest view over the city! Sadly my iPhone could not capture how beautiful it was, but I`ll share a snapshot with you, anyways.

Looking back, I can say that I achieved something great today, I knew I could do it, and it made me very happy to finish. I asked myself how I could improve, what went well and what did not, and already I have new goals for my next run up the hill.

I advise you, to set goals, to visualize them, and finally to review! And share with me: what did you achieve and learn? It can be anything!

Pictures via my Instagram: @with_anna

Workout and Post-Workout Haul

Recently, two new items moved in to my closet. One is purely workout wear, the other is a big relief after a workout, when you don`t want to bother with uncomfortable footwear. 

These colorful T-Shirts by Nike are made from Dri Fit fabric. I would however not use them for very sweaty sports but rather for something “easy”. These T-Shirts come in many different colors and designs and I personally like the fit cut. This is a size S, it`s a bit too long for my taste, but if you choose a smaller size it will mostly be a lot tighter, not shorter.

I also really, really like the “Just Do It” prints. That`s exactly what I am trying to do.

These shoes by Birkenstock might not be the prettiest shoes ever, but they are great to wear after a lot of running. The shoe is very comfortable because the inner sole fits the foot perfectly (see the little “bumps” around the toe area). I chose this glossy white, because they look quite nice with colorfully painted toe nails in summer time. And they are such a relief when you don`t want to bother with uncomfortable heels, sneakers, sandals or flats.

Another Sport: Bouldering

Yesterday, I went bouldering for the first time. Those of you who know as little as I did about this: It`s basically a form of (indoor) climbing where you usually don`t go much higher than 3-4 meters. A huge mattress is on the bottom because you don`t wear any safety gear.

I have never climbed anywhere before, not in a gym, not anywhere else, other than that, I don`t consider myself strong, I am rather scared of heights, and I need some time to find my balance.

In theory, Bouldering isn`t hard, you grab at what ever you think will be good to hold onto while keeping your balance and try to move up or around corners or whatever you want.

The reality for me looked more like the following: Standing at the bottom absolutely plan less what to do, I grab at one thing, another one, I move up once, twice, maybe three times, I loose my balance, I don`t know what to hold onto, because the tiny parts seem not to work, I jump back down.

When you see someone who is experienced doing it, they will figure out where to go before (some “problems” – that`s how you call them -are real ways that you need to follow), then you might see them going through the different grips in their head, and then it looks like they are literally just pulling themselves up in one motion, swinging from one side to the next as if they were dancing.

In conclusion, for me the first time was quite hard, I never got much higher than a few steps which didn`t really make me optimistic. I lost the fears I had, but the doubts are still there. I might go and try it again however.

Have you bouldered before? Or climbed? What are your impressions? Ideas? Tricks?

 

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close – Jonathan Safran Foer

The Storyline

Oskar Schell is an inventor, jewelry designer, jewelry fabricator, amateur entomologist, francophile, vegan, origamist, pacifist, percussionist, amateur astronomer, computer consultant, amateur archeologist, collector of: rare coins, butterflies tat died natural deaths, miniature cacti, Beatles memorabilia, semiprecious stones, and other things. Thomas Schell, Oskar`s father died on September 11, 2001 in one of the World Trade Center Buildings, this was before the story began. Everything that`s left is the memories Oskar shares with his father, his good-bye calls on the answering machine, his personal belongings and a key in an envelope that says nothing more than the word “Black”. A color? A name? Something else? Oskar starts his journey to find the matching lock for the key. Parallel to this story line, another one about Oskar`s grandmother and her past evolves.

The Book

Some of the pages in this book are empty, others contain no more than a word, some contain so many words that you can`t even read them. Some pages contain pictures.

My opinion

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is unlike any book I have read before. It`s written mostly from a child`s point of view, though a very educated one. I think it is a type of book that you will either love or hate. Even though Oskar`s dad had to die in one of the towers attacked on September 11, this book is not a very sad one. You do feel very sorry for Oskar but I think this book is about much more. I`d like to say more, but I would probably say too much about the storyline. I would however really recommend this book.

Next, I want to see the movie “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” starring Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock among others. Also, I think I will probably read another Jonathan Safran Foer book.

Have you read this book or seen the movie? Or any other Foer book? What are your thoughts?

My Trip to Ukraine

As you might now, I spent my last weekend in Ukraine. Before, this was never really a country I considered for my travels. I visited a lot of places with horribly hard names, but I thought I`d just share some impressions with you in the form of pictures. In the last shot, you can see the traditional easter celebration. At around two in the morning everyone gathered around the churches with a basket full of food (for example the special easter bread) and some red wine. The churches priest goes around and consecrated everyone and all the food. Afterwards, everyone gets to try a little bit of the food and drinks and you say: “Christ has risen”

 

This building has 365 windows, 52 rooms and 12 entrances.

The view of the countryside.

I don`t remember the reason anymore, but everyone touched this man`s finger.

And the easter picture.

Run Fast, Push Hard, Finish Strong Dash!

Tomorrow a wonderful blogger, Dash, from Diary of a Dashinista is going to run her very first ever full Marathon! She is going to run for charity.

Head over to her blog to read about the whole story, her training, the ups and downs and of course wish her good luck for the 26.2 miles that lie ahead of her!

Dear Dash, trust in your training, run fast, push hard, finish strong! 

The only thing you can do is win! Have a wonderful run!

Somebody That I Used To Know

While you are reading this I`m probably in the Ukraine for a little mini trip. Pictures coming up, of course.

I just thought I`d share a song that seems to be stalking me around recently. It`s literally all over my most-listened-to radio station. What do you think?

Gotye: Somebody That I Used To Know

Posted in All

Totally Obsessed: 5 Days, 3 Times Spinning & Long Run!

Soo, after my first two spinning classes which were okay and good I was getting more and more obsessed. Within the past five days I have been to three different classes with differing results.

Class Number 1: Spin Racing

I had no idea what I was going for before the beginning of this lesson. I thought it was going to be basically fast spinning in a number of different resistances but it was more of the opposite. We started off with a warm up and from that point on increased, increased and increased the resistance almost only.

We never went too fast, but did have to do some push-up like movements, bending over the handle bar. Out of the 60  minutes of class, maybe 15 were actually spent sitting, maximum. It was very, very hard.

The trainer was a lady, making some not-so-nice comments on how she loved to see everyone suffer. That`s the times when I am very happy not to understand everything in this language.

Class Number 2: Spinning at a new gym

This time I went to a different gym. The room was small and the spinning bikes were very uncomfortable. The handle bar was bent downwards and as hard as metal. The saddle was the most uncomfortable and the wheel seemed to be egg-shaped judging by the sound it made and the awful feeling. The water bottle holders were so far out to the left and right, that you would always hit them with your knee. Yay, blue spots!

The music was great, the trainer mixed the music himself and had some great remixes. But then we had to turn down the volume (in a spinning class!!) because the receptionists found it to loud. He himself was very nice though. Kind of doing a little performance while showing us when to stand and when to sit.

He was great considering he gave heart rate instructions to those with HR-monitors and kept walking around and checking their rates. Nevertheless he kept the rate really, really low and it took me 30 minutes to start sweating and another 15 to feel my legs a little bit. He increased the resistance every few seconds and decreased right away. Then the class was over.

Class Number 3: Spinning at my regular gym

This was another regular spinning class with my favorite trainer. It was awfully hard, which had another run-related reason that I will come back to in a second.

We did a lot of jumps, different standing positions holding on to the top of the handle bar or the lower part, bending forwards, sitting down, going fast and easy or fast and hard. Increase, decrease. It was intense, I sweated hard from the very beginning on, but now I feel absolutely amazing.

Lesson learned: Spinning is not supposed to be easy, equipment, trainers and music make a huge difference. Also the other people whom you are with can influence quality – I tend to feel more competitive with some than with others.

Finally, the long run!

Now, for why my legs felt so tired in yesterday`s spinning class: I went for my longest run thus far: 6.8 miles around the island. It was great, I had to stop to stretch my hip and I am still feeling a bit of pain (I need to go and see a doctor about this) but I was so happy to finish!

 

Tell me things you achieved in your training lately, or what you learned recently!