Sunny December Weekend + Exciting Race Plans

Morning, my friends! Before I get into today’s fun, I wanted to thank you for your wonderful comments on my “Why I Love Yoga” post from Friday! Glad to hear what I wrote resonated with many of you, too. I’m thinking a little yoga might be in order today, in fact…

Anyway! This weekend, we were treated to my favorite “winter” weather: sunny and in the low 50’s. Glorious. Reminded me of North Carolina winter weather!


We celebrated by getting in some solid outdoor time, of course! First up, on Saturday, was hiking the Billy Goat Trail (section A) in Great Falls, MD.

hiking the billy goat trail in great falls md

Our friend Kathleen came along for the fun, and the three of us had an awesome time out there. Couldn’t have asked for better hiking weather!




It took us a few hours to hike Section A, and we stopped about half way through on some pretty rocks to have a little picnic lunch. We all brought snacks and shared!


Kathleen brought an insanely delicious truffle cheese from Whole Foods. So good, especially on a cracker paired with the prosciutto that we brought! We also enjoyed mini PB&J sandwiches:


And some veggies – gotta get those in! :)


Section A (there are sections B and C, too) of the Billy Goat Trail is my favorite because it involves so much fun rock scrambling with pretty views of the water! I love this part where you scramble up:

billy goat trail section A rock scramble

When you finish hiking section A, it dumps you out on the C&O canal, where you can either forge on north to sections B and C, or walk back to where you started. We decided to go a little farther and walk back on a trail on the other side of the canal. Pretty!



Such a fun way to spend the day!

My second outdoor adventure of the weekend was a long run yesterday with Matt, also on the C&O canal, but farther south, near Georgetown.


We had another beautiful day, especially by the time we got out there around 11. We ran a few miles south on the trail, then popped out for a little bit on the Georgetown waterfront. Nice combo of trail and city!


8 miles, done! Matt played some music for us on his phone for the last couple miles and it gave us a nice boost – check out the difference in pace! Perhaps we should do that more often… we were flying by the end!

  • Mile 1: 9:05
  • Mile 2: 8:49
  • Mile 3: 8:53
  • Mile 4: 9:12
  • Mile 5: 9:02
  • Mile 6: 8:55
  • Mile 7: 8:40
  • Mile 8: 8:12


Wait – 8 miles? Why are Matt and I randomly running 8 miles, you ask? Well, I have some exciting news – thanks to my friends at Cabot, we’ll be running the Charleston Half Marathon together on January 16! As you guys know, I’ve been honored to be a member of the “Cabot Fit team” for a few years now, and have been lucky enough to run the Beach to Beacon 10k with them twice as part of a team of other bloggers. Cabot is sponsoring the Charleston Marathon and reached out to me recently to see if Matt and I would be interested in doing the half marathon together, sponsored by them. To my surprise, Matt was really into the idea of doing another half marathon (he’s done one – the Pittsburgh Half Marathon in 2014, in addition to some 10 mile races), and we’ve both been wanting to take a trip to Charleston – perfect! Matt is in good running shape thanks to lots of soccer and was already comfortable at the 5/6 mile distance, so this was our first official long run for training. I know I wrote in October that I was over half marathons and wanted a break, but unsurprisingly a couple months was enough. I found I was still doing longer runs just for fun, and with the wonderful weather we’ve been having I’ve been running a lot more than I was this summer/early fall when it was hot! So, time for another challenge – let’s do this! Even better: Charleston is apparently super flat, which means I might have a chance at finally getting a new half marathon PR. Time to dial things back up at the track. ;) A huge thank you in advance to Cabot for this awesome opportunity for the two of us!

Matt and I grabbed some mochas on our way home, then refueled back at our place with a delicious brunch. Mimosas? Sure, why not. It was even warm enough to dine al fresco!


The rest of yesterday was spent decorating our place for Christmas! We got our first real Christmas tree this year since we’ll be sticking around DC for the holidays. So exciting! Zara is already plotting our tree’s demise, don’t worry… (I love how she’s all “Who, me?” in this photo)


And now, back to work! I’m working from home today because I have to take Zara to the vet later today for her annual check up. She’s also getting a nail trim, which she HATES, so they told me to give her a sedative before I bring her so she doesn’t annihilate their staff, lol. This should be interesting…

Was the weather nice where you were this weekend, too? How did you enjoy it?

Has anyone else done the Charleston Half Marathon? Any tips?

Speaking of running, check back tomorrow because I’ll be sharing my annual Brooks stocking stuffer giveaway! And in case you missed it: here’s my Holiday Gift Guide for Fit Foodies.


  1. 1

    So excited that you both are getting to run Charleston!! It should be a wonderful race… and the city, one of my #AllTimeFaves :)

  2. 6

    The hike looks like a really pretty one. Good luck on training for the Charleston half marathon.

  3. 7

    Have so much fun in Charleston- I’ve always wanted to visit so I’m already looking forward to your recap complete with food recs :) I hope this warmer December weather sticks around for awhile!

  4. 9

    My boyfriend who has not run in 6 or 7 years? maybe even more. Has recently started running with me and totally kicks my butt. Which is nice because it motivates me to get faster. Also, I love having a shared hobby that we can do together that is also good for us! I don’t think he will go for a half justttt yet. But I am working on it! Love that you and Matt both run together :)

  5. 11

    Love a bit of brightness this time of year!!! It was so dark all day here today, so depressing!!!

  6. 12

    exciting! i haven’t run charleston but hear great things about it. i sense a new PR coming up! :)

  7. 14

    You’ll love the Charleston half. I’ve done it and it’s nice and flat! Doesn’t take you through the most gorgeous of Charleston placed but it’s still fun! If you find some free time let me know, love to meet up for a drink or perhaps give a walking tour!

  8. 16

    Yes, we had beautiful weather here too! In fact, I’m going to try to get out again today and enjoy the unseasonably warm weather.

  9. 17
    Elizabeth H. says

    Good luck with Zara’s vet visit! My cat hates going to the vet for anything at all, and has to be sedated for pretty much all examinations–never fun, but always an adventure… Hope your visit ends up being uneventful! :)

  10. 19

    Best of luck!! and watch for Zara climbing on and potentially knocking over your tree ;) *sigh* cats… haha.
    Also, I’m loving this weather too! I get to run later in the year :) But I am still so jealous you get to hike so much! It looks beautiful!

  11. 21

    Oh also, I know you traveled a bit when you taught abroad, but I forget, were you able to visit Amsterdam?

    My dad and I will be there for a few days just before New Years and I’m looking for friends’ recommendations :)

    • 22

      I have been to Amsterdam, but back in 2004 when on a backpacking trip with a friend, and it was so long ago I don’t have any good recs besides the obvious touristy stuff. It’s a lovely city, though – enjoy it!

  12. 23
    Roadrunner says

    Bravo to you and Matt on the Charleston Half! Exciting news — and nicely done on the 8-mile run! Look forward to your training reports. As you noted, time to dial it up on the track AND to dial up the mileage, too! Should be a great opportunity for a new PR!

    And love the Christmas tree and innocent Zara cat!

  13. 24

    Hi Anne! I am a long-time reader and fellow runner (and recreational triathlete, yogi, health coach and MD). I ran the Charleston half marathon in January 2014. The first five miles takes you through the scenic parts of Downtown/historic Charleston, then the next 8 is up to North Charleston along a highway. It is NOT a pretty run after you leave downtown, but it is fairly flat. Be prepared for any type of weather. It was really cold and windy in 2014, and the run up to North Charleston was directly into the wind—ugh! My husband and I run together often, and it really is a neat thing for a couple (IMO). He can kill me in shorter distances if he’s well-trained, but I have better running endurance, so we often run half-marathons together. It makes the relaxing after the race more fun. You will enjoy Charleston! Good luck to you and to Matt.

    • 25

      Thank you for the tips, Carrie! Bummer it’s not super scenic for the second half, but I like the sound of fairly flat! Fingers crossed for good weather…

  14. 26

    We had some amazing weather in Boston last weekend, and more on the way! Love all of your pics- looks like a beautiful hike, delicious lunch & brunch! Exciting about the race too- I would love to run that one day! Good luck!

  15. 27

    Cool!! Exciting news! Really fun you two are going to run it together!!! :D


  1. […] the track. Now that I’m training officially again (more details about what I’m training for in yesterday’s post, if you missed it), I’m ready to kick things back up a notch, and it felt good to really […]

  2. […] run day! As you know, Matt and I have a half marathon coming up in 2 weeks (here’s more info about what race we are doing!), and we had our last long run on the schedule for Saturday: 12 […]

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