Fall Favorites

Fall is my ultimate favorite season.  Partly due to the crisp weather, but also because of all the fun fall activities. These are some of my favorite things to do in fall.


Wine Your Way Out

Something I look forward to every year is meandering through a corn maze, searching for wine.  One of my favorite corn mazes is put on by McPeek’s.  At the start of their corn maze, they provide you with snacks and a map.  It is your job to track down the wine stations within the maze.



Columbus Marathon

My favorite race to do during the fall is the Columbus Marathon.  The race raises money for Nationwide Children’s Hospital, located in Columbus, Ohio.  Each mile is dedicated to a different child at the Hospital, and they and their families cheer you on as you pass their stations.  In fact, the number of supporters that come out to encourage you to keep going is impressive.  It is one of the things that sets this race apart from others around the country.  It is also a Boston qualifier, if you are interested in being that badass.



Growing up in the mid-west, football is a easy fall favorite.  I grew up in a family where my grandma was medically induced to give birth to my mom so as not to miss a football Saturday when OSU was playing, and Bryan and I specifically picked our wedding weekend two years in advance so that we would not be married on a OSU game day.  So needless to say, we love football.


Another fall tradition we love is building a haunted gingerbread house.  We do our best aesthetically, but I can’t say that we always succeed.  We usually get our kits from Williams and Sonoma.

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Another festive activity we try to do each fall is paint nite.  Paint Nite is hosted by an artist, usually in a bar or restaurant, and the artist teaches you how to paint whatever image he or she has chosen for the evening.  They have events going on all year round, but during the holidays, they tend to be themed, which is always more fun.  Neither Bryan or I are very artistic, but very little talent is required to participate.


Exercising While On Vacation… Wait what?!

I know, I know – I’m going on vacation so exercise? really??

Unfortunately, yes.  I am getting married next year, and I really love eating so exercising is a must.  But since I will be staying in air B&Bs the whole trip, without access to a gym, my trainer and I came up with a no-gym/no-equipment solution.  Here’s the schedule we came up with:

Day 1 WK1 Reps WK 2 Reps
Escalating Density (12 min) (meaning you do five reps of each exercise and then repeat until the 12 minutes have expired – if this is too easy, increase to 15 minutes)
A1.) Push Up, which is pretty self-explanatory
A2.) Split Squat: This is essentially a stationary lunge.  If anyone is familiar with Barre3, this is basically the same thing as carousel horse.
x5 per leg
x5 per leg
A3.) Reverse Crunch: lay down on the floor so that there is no space between the floor and the small of your back. Then raise your legs so your body is in a v shape and lower them slowly until you feel your abs catch.  Raise them to the starting position and repeat.
A4.) Reverse Lunge
x5 per leg
x5 per leg
Day 2 WK1 Reps WK 2 Reps
Escalating Density (12 min)
B1.) Squat Jump: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Start by doing a regular squat, then engage your core and jump up. When you land, lower your body back into the squat position to repeat.
B2.) Partner Towel Row: so you can only do this if you are traveling with a friend, but the idea of this exercise is that your partner provides the resistance by holding one side of a rolled towel while you stand face to face with them and pull the other side of the towel as though doing a row.
x5 per arm
x5 per arm
B3.) Shoulder Taps: begin by taking a plank position. Then lift one hand to the opposite shoulder (i.e. the “tap”) so that you are in a one arm plank, and then place it back down so that you are once again in a two arm plank position.  Then lift the other hand to tap the opposite shoulder.  Repeat.
x5 per arm
x5 per arm
B4.) Reaching Single Leg Dead Lift.  For those familiar with Yoga, this is similar to warrior three.  The starting position here is standing on one leg, which is slightly bent. As you bent forward at the hips, move your arms directly out in front of you, and raise your non-standing leg to create a straight line from your fingertips to your left toes (i.e. parallel to the ground)
x5 per leg
x5 per leg

I will also – hopefully – be running while on vacation.  My fiancé and I are running our second Marathon in late October, and if I come back having failed to run, he will finish the race embarrassingly far ahead of me.  I’ve posted our training schedule below, if anyone is interested.

I know running sounds horrible to most people.  And it really did to me for the longest time.  In fact, I quit sports in high school because I loathed running.  Had you told me then that I would one day fall in love with it, I would have laughed in your face.  But, after graduating college, running kept me sane.

I had a really hard time my very first year out of college.  I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life (although let’s face it, I still don’t), but back then I had no direction, no plan, leaving me feeling utterly lost.  I had moved home to live with my parents, none of my friends lived in my home city anymore, and I did not have a job, so I spent the year working for my dad – who worked mostly from home. Needless to say, I almost never left the house.  Except to run.

My littlest brother was in his last year of high school, and he forced me out of my house to go on runs with him.  Eventually, he talked me into running a half-marathon.  After running that race, I was addicted.  So much so that I signed my fiancé (then boyfriend) up for the next year’s half.  Although he was not pleased about it – he hated running more than I ever had – he soon learned to love running just as I did.  All it took was for him to realize that running never gets easier – you simply get better at it.


Week Sun Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Sat
1 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 3 miles 3 miles Rest 6 miles
2 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 3 miles 3 miles Rest 7 miles
3 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 4 miles 3 miles Rest 8 miles
4 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 4 miles 4 miles Rest 9 miles
5 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 4 miles Rest 10 miles
6 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 4 miles 3 miles Rest 7 miles
7 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 4 miles Rest 11 miles
8 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 5 miles Rest 12 miles
9 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 5 miles Rest 13 miles
10 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 6 miles 5 miles Rest 14 miles
11 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 5 miles 4 miles Rest 10 miles
12 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 6 miles 6 miles Rest 15 miles
13 Rest 5 miles Cross Train 6 miles 7 miles Rest 16 miles
14 Rest 5 miles Cross Train 7 miles 8 miles Rest 18 miles
15 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 6 miles 5 miles Rest 12 miles
16 Rest 6 miles Cross Train 7 miles 9 miles Rest 20 miles
17 Rest 5 miles Cross Train 6 miles 5 miles Rest 14 miles
18 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 4 miles Rest 8 miles
19 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 3 miles 2 miles Rest 1 mile
20 Race Day!!