October 6, 2014

Fall Weekend Fun, Indoors and Out

This was a really packed weekend, and yet I still managed to get plenty of sleep. So basically, perfect!

Friday night was a quiet night in for me (catching up How To Get Away With Murder = awesome), but Saturday morning I was up bright and early to head to a group run with Road Runner Sports Westminster. It had been a while since I’d been back to the group – and for that matter, it had been a while since I’d really gone for a run! I’ve been going hiking a lot, or hitting the cardio machines/weights at the gym, so I was a little worried about how I’d handle jumping back into running. We ended up doing 5.25 miles around a 9:00-9:20 pace, and then went for coffee at Starbucks after.

I was so glad we were going for coffee after, because that pace was a little bit fast for me to be able to really chat easily, and I wanted to not be the anti-social one! Taking a cue from Kelly’s custom salted caramel mocha, I ordered a version of a fall drink that was still pretty darn healthy: an Americano with one pump of hazelnut syrup and one pump of pumpkin spice, plus a splash of 2% milk. Having just two pumps of syrup made it a lot less sweet than some of the usual Starbucks concoctions, but I still felt like it was a nice low-cal treat. As a bonus, it woke me up instead of me wanting to nap after the run 🙂

I got home and did another 3/4 of a mile on the treadmill (done in two minute intervals of 1/4 mile each), because god forbid I not have an even number for my day’s mileage. (Tell me I’m not the only nut that does that?) But also, I wanted to try Christine’s ski-ready legs workout, and I figured that the quarter mile repeats would make a great warmup and then break in between the three rounds of the lifting that I did. I felt fantastic when I got home… though definitely ready for a hearty lunch after that. Hooray for being a weekend warrior!

After lunch, I headed down to south Denver to go see the Gone Girl movie with my book club, at a theater I had always wanted to check out, the Alamo Drafthouse. I read Gone Girl over a year ago, so I had honestly forgotten parts of it and therefore parts of the movie were kind of exciting to me. But I really didn’t care for the movie – it was just too frustrating! Without giving any parts of the plot away, I had been hoping for a different ending… but the movie was 100% true to the book (probably because the author, Gillian Flynn, also wrote the screenplay). I’ve read Flynn’s other two novels, Sharp Objects and Dark Places, and while they were both good, they are all definitely too dark and unsettling for my taste. When I read, I want to either learn something or hear something uplifting/happy… and Flynn’s books are definitely the opposite of that! I left the theater in kind of a weird mood.

But the rest of my night perked me up: I ended my Saturday with a few beers down at Amato’s Ale House. I hadn’t managed to snag tickets to this year’s Great American Beer Fest (it sells out so fast! Within five minutes this year), but I did get to try a few special brews that I loved. Namely, Southern Tier’s Warlock – which is like a stout version of their Pumking that I am obsessed with and may have hoarded at least a case of in my liquor cabinet. I had never heard of the Warlock before (it’s new as part of a special limited release!) so I was really excited to have stumbled upon it. Definitely go look for it before it runs out! (And before I start hoarding so much of it that you can’t get any).

Sunday morning, I was again up early, and after a quick workout, again heading back down to South Denver. This time, it was to meet up with a group of girlfriends for knitting/needlework/crafting at a coffee shop. I rarely talk about it on the blog, but my freshman year of college at NYU, I took a costuming course and ended up falling in love with it – even spending a summer as a costume intern for a Pennsylvania theater. I really love sewing, and managed to dig up a cross stitch piece that I started about ten years ago and haven’t touched since.

Cross Stitch
This Sunday, I made a lot of progress on her dress, which is annoying because it’s a million different slightly different shades of white, all with one square here and two squares there. Lots of counting!

It was fun and different to get to sit around sewing and chatting, and I was surprised at just how calmingly rhythmic it was to do cross stitch. After reading 10% Happier and being able to relate to the author, Dan Harris, pretty closely, I’ve been considering trying to make meditation a regular part of my life, and I feel like sewing might be a great way to ease into that because my hands would still have something to do, but my mind could either be going in a million directions (ugh, wrong, I know) or at least trying to be blank. It’s probably really terrible of me that I am trying to figure out how to meditate as part of doing something else, which is kind of against the whole focus-on-one-thing part, but… baby steps?

After sitting for so long, though, I was eager to do something active, so I was really excited to get out and try a new sport: Spikeball. It’s kind of like a mini version of volleyball, except you try to get the ball to bounce off the net (instead of not allowing it to touch the net)… and it was so much fun!

Denver Spikeball
Gorgeous day to be playing, too!

I heard about the Denver Spikeball group through an announcement posted on Gociety, and the organizer, Seth, was awesome about walking me through the rules, practicing with me on a spare net, and then continually giving me high fives on the rare occasions when I actually made a good play! 🙂 It was a much more active game than I was expecting (you need to be prepared to really dive for the fast-moving ball), and I really regretted wearing jeans and a t-shirt to the park. It hadn’t looked quite that intense on the Spikeball website, but this crew was good! Next time I play, I am definitely going to be wearing gym clothes so I can move more easily and also not be afraid to get sweaty (and grass-stained).

So… lots packed into the weekend, including a ton of new-to-me activities, and I headed to bed around 7:30pm on Sunday night for some reading and relaxing – which meant I started today off fresh and well-rested. What a perfect fall weekend!


10 thoughts on “Fall Weekend Fun, Indoors and Out”

  1. Wow, you did so many things this weekend! I kinda want to see Gone Girl (even though I hated the ending of the book), just because I want to see how they do parts of it…. like how they tie in her diary entries. I’m so impressed by how you’re always finding fun things and groups to do them with! All the groups on Meetup and sites like that are far from me (like everything else…), so I think it’s really cool that you can take advantage of them!

    1. They did a really good job staying true to the book, but… yeah. It ends the same 🙁

      Meetup has been an AMAZING source for me of friends and activities! Though sometimes I do end up driving a bit to them, like the treks down to Littleton this weekend (~40 minutes each way). I try to combine the far away events with other errands I need to do in that area, to make it a little easier.

    1. Went looking for Warlock and they do not sell it in either Colorado or Arizona. I am looking into engaging an exporter (read: Mat) in New York… stay tuned!

  2. I completely love Warlock and Pumking!! (And really most of the Southern Tier beers!) Glad you got to try it! I feel like Pumking tastes better this year than last…. Last year was the first year that it was super mass-produced, and I thought it was a little watered-down tasting. This year it is back to it’s nutmegy, pumpkiny glory!

    1. Southern Tier is by far my favorite brewery 🙂 I still have some bottles of last year’s Pumking so I’ll have to try comparing to this year’s!

  3. Lots of fun! I recently took out a cross stitch kit again. I haven’t done it since I was pretty young, but I like crafting, and it’s a very calming way to keep my hands busy (since I can’t sit still) without using my cell phone. I still need to read Gone Girl – I’ve heard it’s really good!

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