Summer Lovin’ (tell me more, tell me more)

I’ve been spending every free minute outside. Between the warm air, the cool breeze, and the sunshine inching later and later into the evening, I feel like I’m smack dab in the middle of July. No complaints here!

I said yes to a last minute invitation to the White Sox game Wednesday night. I hadn’t been since it was Comiskey Park (supΒ 1996) so venturing to the South Side felt like an adventure in and of itself.

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I had zero expectations of a White Sox game since I am a Cubs fan (only because of the Americana aspect, not because I actually have any interest in or intelligence of baseball), but it was fun! It was fairly crowded for a Wednesday night and I joined my roommate Colleen and two of her friends for what turned out to be an exciting game. Granted, I didn’t watch much, but the conversation and food were killer.

U.S. Cellular Field definitely has its food priorities in order. So. Many. Options. From Wao Bao to Hooters, tamales to pirogi, the options were overwhelming. In an attempt to stay on track with my healthy eating, I ordered a turkey sandwich. When you see the following picture, remember the ingredients are healthy. Please ignore the fact that my sandwich could feed a family of four.

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Hell yeah! This turkey club was the Buckingham Palace of turkey clubs. There was APRICOT JAM on it. AND guacamole. And other stuff. Too much other stuff. No wait…no such thing.

#noregrets

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You know how as soon as you eat something salty you just have to have something sweet? Insert soft serve cone here.

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And because apparently we weren’t spoiled enough on Wednesday with nice weather, Mother Nature decided to grace us with the best day in the past 365 days (I’ll go head-to-head with anyone who challenges that) yesterday. Thank goodness because I had a track workout scheduled and I was not about to deal with Tuesday’s fog again.

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This is what I love about Chicago. In the shadows of buildings as tall as the sky, you can always find hidden parks, and it suddenly feels like your own little haven. Not to mention I always run into someone I know — Erin came to the workout! I was so happy to see her, especially after getting smoked on Tuesday during the tempo run. It felt good to see a familiar face! Or should I say, familiar feet.

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We started out with a half-mile shakeout followed by dynamic stretching and an explanation of the workout. The track workout consisted of 5x400s (400m=one lap) and a timed mile run. The 400m were broken up into 200m at 5K pace (uncomfortable, challenging) plus a 200m recovery jog to get our heart rates back down. Practicing that pace took so much out of me–I was exhausted! However, I had no choice but toΒ recover for five minutes and then pushed it for a timed mile, something I haven’t done in years.Β To put that in perspective, the last time I was timed for a mile, George W. Bush was President. Let that sink in. I ran in 8:16, which, while isn’t Olympic by a longshot, is an exciting place to start. Dave, the running coach and marathoner extraordinaire (remember when he ran 100 miles in 24 hours??) is going to take my time and develop a pace chart for me to use during training. That way, I’ll be on top of improvements and will be able to continue to push myself.

Group shot!

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As I lay my head on my pillow last night, I realized I have barely been in my apartment in the past 72 hours. I never used to be an outdoor person, but now that I live on my own and am 100% in charge of how I spend my time, you can bet I’ll be using my apartment as a homebase to cook and sleep, but that’s about it for the next few months. HELLO SUMMER!

It’s almost time: time for street festivals, free concerts at the Pritzker Pavilion, movies in the park overlooking Lake Michigan, the Lakeshore Path so jam-packed with people that you almost want to get mad (but you can’t because you’re too excited to share the joy with them), strolling the Green City Farmer’s Market at 9am scoping out the best breakfast taco to eat, maneuvering Divvy bikes down busy city streets because the thought of getting on the stuffy CTA is unbearable, parking yourself on a patio and drinking a fizzy cocktail for hours until the sun goes down, walking to the beach at 10am and staking your claim on a patch of sand until someone asks you to join their volleyball game, grilling out on makeshift patios…….

Can you tell I love the possibility this summer holds?

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I’m headed to Madison with my family for Mother’s Day Weekend tomorrow! Get ready to see pictures from the most beautiful farmers market in the world.

Questions:

  • If you had to pick ONE activity to do every day this summer, what would it be? Just one! Run, drink sangria, pet a koala…go!
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36 comments

  1. OMG have the best time in Madison. And go to Chocolate Shoppe for Ice cream. you must. And the farmer’s market…. ooohhhhh check out my posts on Madison from last year! I love that place. Have fun with your mom!

  2. Ugh this question is like beyond hard. I’m going to go with go to the beachwithmyfriendsandacoolerfullofbeer. If I make it all one word its just one activate right? Have a great weekend! : )

  3. This post just got me really excited for summer! If I could choose one thing to do everyday in this big, beautiful city of ours, it would probably have to be going to an outdoor concert (a girl can dream, right?). Chicago has some of the best outdoor venues in the country!

  4. Those sandwiches are INSANE! They look huge and loaded with yummy ingredients. I had no idea ball parks had become foodie paradises. It sound like there were tons of great options!

    1. You lucky SOB you left Australia just as the seasons changed here so you get to have a pretty decent 2015! Haha no winter for you, right? Or am I way off?

      It would be so cool if a group of us came to NY and did a little blogger trip. Let me brainstorm.

  5. Wait, is petting a koala a viable option for what I’d like to do this summer? Because I’m going to have to go with that FOR SURE.

    I…am honestly not all that into summer in Chicago. Or summer in general, to be honest, since I don’t like hot weather. But I am excited to not have to take 10 extra minutes before I leave to get bundled up to go outside πŸ˜›

    1. ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE BETHANY! πŸ™‚ Wait…who isn’t into summer? Idk about you anymore……….just kidding. After my experience on the CTA yesterday (read: so many smells, makeup melting off my face, etc.) I can see the downsides haha

  6. Looks like you had a great time at the ball park. I haven’t been in one since I don’t know how long. Even though I am pretty close to the Mets stadium and a drive away from the Yankees stadium. The food looked amazing!! I am still thinking about what I want to do every day this summer!

  7. Have a fantastic weekend in Madison. I have been to several baseball games. The Phillies. I like that more than football Bc I can follow it. I have always wanted to go to Chicago. Definitely want to visit during the summer months.

  8. That Chicago picture looks so much better than the one I took when I moved here. It was cold and there were no leaves on the trees. I can’t wait to be able to actually take a pretty one! Awesome time last night, by the way πŸ™‚

  9. Ahh, you’re making me so sad that I live out in the ‘burbs! I really love the city, and nothing is better than Chicago in the summer. I’m hoping that with switching jobs I’ll have more time to make it into the city this summer. My one activity that I would choose: shopping? Haha. If it’s not too hot, running, otherwise having food or a drink (or maybe both, crazy, I know) on a patio.

    1. Which burb are you from again? I do love spending summers in the suburbs too, though. So many memories — bonfires, picnics, forest preserves…so much good stuff. I hope you spend more time here too! We can meet up!

  10. The weather has been FANTASTIC!!! I’m right with you on loving it and am nowhere close to complaining about heat anytime soon πŸ™‚
    Maybe this slipped by me, but have you met Dave?! And is he personally coaching you? In any case, having him create a pace chart for you is AWESOME!!! I’m excited to follow in your first marathon journey.

      1. Ah I don’t lol…Oops! I just clicked the link to your other post and realized I was thinking something else with that description – my bad…But NOW I clicked and read your previous post and found out how really AWESOME he is! Yay for clarification and sorry for the confusion!!

  11. I’m just dying to get out and about more outside right now but I would probably turn into an ice pole if I did it – it’s still freezing even on a sunny day! but hey, that’s scotland! Haha!
    If I could do anything on a summers day it would be hiking in the hills and forest, followed by a nice margarita… Or wine… Or rum… You know I’m just not that picky! πŸ˜‰

  12. Def excited for this warm weather!! It’s so all of a sudden I feel like (#longestwinterever) …but looks like you’re having a blast! I love those sandwiches!! YUM!… my one thing?! Journal! I love love LOVE journaling! Especially outside on a beautiful day! I keep a journal, prayer journal, food journal and even sometimes a dream journal!! πŸ™‚ My fave!!

  13. My favorite summer activity is tanning walks. I also love the smells! It’s amazing! The winter makes my nose lazy because there is nothing so smell. The cut grass, the flowers, the Mexican restaurant πŸ˜‰ Everything smells great!

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