November 20, 2017

Weekend Recap: Wheeling Around Town

Today was the first Monday in months that I haven’t had to fly somewhere – and it was amazing to just be able to work in Colorado rather than commuting across the country! I had an incredibly productive day, and was also able to squeeze in a few errands on breaks. And in anticipation of this ten day long stint in Colorado, I lined up a bunch of fun activities this weekend.

Friday night was quiet – I stayed in, ran some errands, and went to bed early. But one of those errands was from my fall bucket list: I hit the liquor store and then set about infusing some bourbon with apple pie flavors. It took less than two minutes to chop up the apple and get this going, and I can’t wait to open it on Thanksgiving and see how it tastes!

Saturday started with a lot more errands and chores around the house, but at 10am, I headed downtown for a spin class with some friends, organized by Amanda. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as the Cyclebar class I had taken the day before (there is a new Cyclebar opening not far from my house, and all the classes are free til Thanksgiving!). I have always been partial to spin classes like Flywheel, where you see a little computer with your resistance level and the instructor can reference the numbers; otherwise, the “add three turns to the right”, “now take one turn off” just confuses me. It’s not that I can’t count turns, but when it gets heavy, I convince myself that I must have been at the wrong level to start, and so I turn it down… and then they tell us to take a few turns off and it’s suddenly way too easy, and I realize maybe it was supposed to be that heavy. I like it better when the instructor tells me to set my resistance to a certain number, so I know where I’m supposed to be even if I end up modifying. Tell me I’m not the only one who can’t self-select a resistance level?!

After class, I had a great time after catching up with Amanda and also making some new friends. All of us were fitness bloggers, thanks to Amanda’s awesome network and penchant for organizing these great monthly events 🙂 And that meant we also got some bonus snacks and swag at the end – fun!

Great group – looking forward to seeing these ladies again soon.

While I would have liked to have bike computers telling me the resistance levels, I really liked the studio itself, High Ride Cycle, which had a nice setup. They have a big roof deck and said that they will sometimes take all the bikes out there for sunrise or sunset rides! How awesome – I would definitely go back to try that.

I ended up lingering a bit too long after class, and then had to race over to southeast Denver, where I was psyched for my next appointment. I went through training / background checks several months ago to volunteer with the International Rescue Commission, but for variety of different reasons, hadn’t yet been able to volunteer. Well, Saturday was the day – I was booked to drive a family from their home to the IRC’s “First Thanksgiving” meal. Although it got off to a rocky start, I ended up having an incredible experience, and am looking forward to volunteering with the IRC again later this week. (More to come on this – trying to get all my thoughts coherently written down.)

Next, Saturday evening was my favorite kind of night out: a casual night in Old Town Louisville, the adorable town next to me. Louisville’s Main Street is so quaint and adorable, and it reminds me of Stars Hollow from Gilmore Girls, right down to the pavilion just off the main drag 🙂 And, the restaurants on Main Street are literally among my favorites in the Front Range! I started the night at Por Wine House, where I got to enjoy a live band and a glass of wine over a tray of breads and spreads (yes please to all the carbs). Then, we continued on to Empire Lounge, where I had the fantastic pear salad and to-die-for Coal Miner’s mac and cheese. Seriously, this is the best mac and cheese I can get anywhere! I love Louisville as much for the food as for the atmosphere, and both pretty much make any night out there a perfect one.

On Sunday, I kicked off my morning with some reading and my new favorite Bananas Foster flavored coffeeSo delicious! But after that and some more errands/chores, it was time to get out and about again, and I headed downtown for a charity bike ride.

Cranksgiving is defined as “a food drive on two wheels”, where teams ride around the city stopping at grocery stores to purchase items to donate to a local food pantry. And with a great Denver twist from the Pedals and Pints group that was organizing this particular iteration of the event, we started and ended at breweries, and also had one required brewery stop on the way 🙂 Remember how my fall bucket list had “go on a biking brewery tour”? Done and done!

My team had a blast trying to plot the fastest routes from one grocery to the next, and then strategically buy the items from the list so we could get the best deals and save the heaviest stuff for when we were closest to the end. In between stops, we also brainstormed to figure out costumes we could put together to be eligible for a prize at the end. Well, it’s a good thing we paid attention to that last part – because our “Basic Suburban Bachelorette Party” accessories won us the “best costume” prize at the end!

We are all toasting wine glasses from the Dollar Store with hot pink writing that says, “Girl’s best friends: wine and shoes” 🙂 Our team made fast friends!

This event was such a blast, and it was also great to feel like we were doing a little something by gathering food for charity. Admittedly, it would have been a lot more efficient to just go buy items and donate them… but this was a great way to spend an afternoon. And while the organizer did a great job, I also thought that perhaps it wouldn’t be too hard to organize a similar event myself come spring? I’m looking forward to it!

I finished out the weekend by heading up to Boulder for their “Switch on the Holidays” tree lighting followed by dinner with my friend Kelly and her family. All in all, a pretty great weekend – and one that has me psyched and ready for Thanksgiving later this week. I can’t wait!


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