Wow, another year of blogging is here and I can’t believe I have been working on this blog for the past two years. In some ways it feels as though I have been blogging for much longer than just two years, but in others I look back and see how much I have grown in the past two years. Having the ability to go back and look at posts from when I first started this blog and seeing how much I have grown from those first posts is one of my favorite things about blogging. I sure have grown from those first few awkward posts, but it is still great to look back and see the progress I have made over the years.
Since today is a day of celebration on this blog, I thought I would follow the same fashion as I did last year and take a trip down memory lane over the past year of blogging.
June kicked off my second year of blogging and it sure was a good one. I celebrated the blog’s blogiversary by hosting my first giveaway, which was a prize pack of Larabar since I was a big fan, and still continue to be. I shared some tips I learned in my first year of blogging, celebrated National Running Day, finished up the Tone It Up Bikini Series, and got cooking some black bean burgers. It was a similar month to what’s on the look out for this coming month for me!
In July I set some fitness goals for the month and then headed off to celebrate 4th of July at the Silver Lake Sand Dunes. I learned more about Lorna Jane’s Move Nourish Believe philosophy and learned how to incorporate those principles into my own life. I kept fit with a HIIT routine and stuck to a budget while still shopping for my favorite fitness gear. I began to prepare to move into my first college apartment and figured out the essentials for my kitchen. My first post as contributor to Shawn Johnson’s The Body Department site was published, which was very exciting. I checked back in with those fitness goals I set including a track workout and created a speed workout to keep up my running speed through the summer. The blog also got a much needed makeover from Teach Pray Love Designs after a year of my own designing, which is still the design I have today.
August was the month of my birthday and I celebrated both at home and at Vinsetta’s Garage with my family. I headed out for a family vacation (the first in years) to Silver Lake and had a wonderful time with my family. I got back from vacation and got busy creating a kitchen shopping list for my apartment and started the whole process of packing for it. I moved into my apartment in late August and shared a tour of my apartment (it sure has changed since I first moved in!) in two parts. I got back into the routine of school as I started my junior year of college, which ended up being my busiest year yet.
As September began I spent Labor Day weekend with my friends up north and walked the Mackinac Bridge, a yearly tradition that we started a few years ago. I started to get used to cooking for one, which I was realized was a bigger transition than I thought. I joined in on Tone It Up’s Frisky Fall challenge that went through to Halloween. I traveled to Boston with my family to celebrate my brother’s entrance into the seminary, while also enjoying the sights of Boston. I became pumpkin butter obsessed as fall rolled in, which wasn’t helped by Trader Joe’s pumpkin extravaganza ;). I celebrated Active Nation Day with Lorna Jane and shared my favorite snacks to pack in my backpack for long days on campus.
In October I teamed up with Hamilton Beach to try out a slow cooker, and give one away too. School started to get the best of me, but I made a re-commitment to get back on track and get rid of habits that were no longer serving me. I also started a three month campaign with Puritan’s Pride that challenged me to create new smoothies with different ingredients. It was a campaign that I really enjoyed, and with the giveaways I offered, I think you did too! I followed up on my original “You know you’re a runner when…” post as I started increasing my long distance runs throughout the fall months.
November I reflected on Tone It Up’s Frisky Fall challenged and shared my go-to blogging resources that were helping me grow and expand the blog. My running high kept increasing and I shared some advice for new runners who were just getting involved with running. I shared a typical Day in the Life for me during my fall semester, though no one day is really so typical for me during the school year! I also signed up for my first half marathon and made the commitment to make a goal of mine come true. I started gearing up for winter with a post about my winter weather gear and finally visited home for the first time in months to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family.
As December began I recapped my visit home for the holiday and promptly started studying for finals. I was so ready for a tough semester to be over with and to enjoy an extended amount of time at home with my family and friends. I created a gift guide for the active girl for the upcoming holiday season and rounded out my smoothie challenges with Puritan’s Pride. I reflected on things I wish I had known as a new runner in the hopes for others not to make mistakes I did. I was home sweet home for the holidays and had my annual Christmas baking day with my mom and brother. I celebrated Christmas with my family and welcomed a new pair of running shoes into my growing collection. As the year rounded out I looked back on my year of running, which really seemed to be my best yet. I fell in love with running longer distances and geared up for training for my first long distance race. I participated in my first FitFluential campaign to share the ASICS GEL-Fit Sana, which have grown to become my favorite cross-training shoes. I ended out the year with my top 10 recipes as viewed by you on the blog.
The new year rolled in and I kicked off January with the start of Tone It Up’s Love Your Body series and realized I was a coffee addict. After a relaxing winter break, I headed back to MSU to start a new semester. I shared a peek into my apartment “gym” and shared a new day in the life for a new semester of school.
February came along and I discussed my transition back to morning workouts that seems as though it’s here to stay. I started going out of my cooking comfort zone and created my own manifesto. As Valentine’s Day came and passed I shared ways to continue that love, especially for your own self. With winter in full swing I learned to love the dreadmill and started the fasting season in preparation for Easter.
March was a month to remember! I met up with a few Tone It Up girls for a Zumbathon and later jumped on the Spiralizer bandwagon. I then traveled to Alaska for a week during spring break and had a wonderful opportunity to meet other Orthodox Christians in college and help out the greater Anchorage area (I recapped that memorable trip here and here). Right after coming back from Alaska, I started training for my first half marathon and shared the progress I had made with Lauren Gleisberg’s Fit For Life program. I had my first blogger meetup with Leigha and we instantly clicked over our love for blogging and running. It sure was a great way to round out the month!
As April rolled in I reflected on my fitness game changer, which was lifting heavier weights. I then teamed up with Champion to share how I train better with the right attire and a continuation of my personal running journey. I celebrated Easter with my family and started looking forward to summer break coming up. I became inspired by the Boston Marathon to motivate my half marathon training and dove into an inspiring Boston Marathon story that touched my heart. Half marathon training was in full swing and I shared my favorite training links and how I foam roll. I decided to finally take the plunge and make the investment into a DSLR camera to better my photography, and I can tell you it has been completely worth it already.
May was a month of transition. I finished off my junior year with a week of finals and reflected on what blogging in college has taught me both as a blogger and as a college student. I spent my first weekend of summer break at home to celebrate the end of the semester and Mother’s Day. I started my first week at my summer job and then went home to run my first half marathon. I did a lot better than I expected to and was proud that my 9 weeks of training paid off. The next weekend I headed to the west side of the state to spend the long weekend at the Silver Lake Sand Dunes, which was a much enjoyed trip away. I settled into my new routine of working, though I spoke too soon, as my schedule has changed already– go figure.
Wow, what a year! As I reflect on this past year of blogging, I can say that this blog has grown way more than I ever expected it to. What started out as a summer break hobby has turned into a major part of my life that I am proud of. All of the hard work I continue to put into this blog is worth it because in the end I have this blog dedicated to sharing my journey though healthy living and helping others on their journey. It truly is a wonderful thing.
I also wanted to thank each and every one of you who comes here daily, weekly, monthly, whenever, to read this space of mine. I have made countless connections with so many that I am so thankful for and it is all of you who keep me coming back here day after day. As always, I love connecting with you all so feel free to contact me via email, comment, or any of my social media sites and say hi! I’ll be sure to respond <3.
Year 3, here we go! Let’s make it even better than the first two years!