Race Pics and Da Weekend

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Question:  Do you generally order race pics?  I definitely do for “monumental” races like my first half marathon, or if I didn’t snap good ones myself (or if my paparazzi for the day was at baseball  “on strike”).  I really liked the proofs from Sunday’s race, mainly because they cracked me up and because I am SURE I made some enemies along the way, being that annoying goober smiling and waving like a turd while others around me probably sent me mental death threats 😉  See for yourself:

Haha Nice. 

Anyway, what are you up to on this fine winterlike Spring weekend?  We are headed to the PR!  PR is Pound Ridge, NY, where Husband is from.  I cannot WAIT to see Addie in all her glory in the enormo backyard that my in-laws inhabit.

She will also be meeting MIL and FIL along with LOLA girl!

Lola as a puppy

Here are some past pictures of our time in “the Ridge” as we also call it (love looking at pics to get me revved up!)

Recap from PR Memorial Day Weekend

Recap from PR Fourth of July!

Ahhhhhhhhh sooooooo relaxing.  In all honesty, I sometimes need to be removed from my house to TRULY relax.  Very excited!  What are your weekend plans?!?! 

I PUSHED for the TUSH!

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Pre-Race pic in front of the Art Museum

Today was the Get Your Rear in Gear 10K for the Colon Cancer Coalition.

 It was a really special race for me, as it was my first race EVER last year (last year was a 5k).  I was soooo nervous going into the race, as my recurring injury had sidelined me ten days prior to the race, so I was pretty much blindly going into this; mylast “long run” being my half marathon three weeks ago and a few three milers sprinkled in there.  BUT, I PUSHED and PUSHED and did really well (for me!)! I might’ve even PRed!

332  1163 10K    Jessica Downes             F    30            Philadelp PA   58:04   55:01  8:52  40/148  F30-39  137/476  F

Post-race pic, same spot, definitely SEATED though this time ;)

'Twas a LOVELY day and a LOVELY race! Anyway, I hit quickly hit the road shortly after the race as I had a bridal shower planning session:) FUN!

Yup, another car picture- how do you think I got to my luncheon!??! LOL

And now, a little actually A LOT of this... OK, I'm EXHAUSTED! Peace out for now. Tell me about your weekend!

Sissy’s B-day Dinner at Chabaa 2011


I’ll start off by saying that last year, we went to Chabaa Thai Bistro in Manyunk for Sara’s birthday and we all REALLY liked it, so when she suggested it again for this year’s fiasco, we all were PSYCHED!  I have to say that AGAIN, CHABAA did NOT disappoint! It was soooo yummy!  Here is the recap:

The birthday girl in all her glory with the cuppy-cakies I got her (hey, she's easy to please)

Oh wait, can’t forget about this one:

Here is me “all decked out” for St. patty’s day…

Here are Husband’s thoughts on it…

Anyway, for her REAL cake, one of Sara’s besties actually MADE this rediculously delicious mastepiece (in one day and from scratch, mind you!)…

The "pot of gold" at the top is actually a rice krispy treat with real chocolate coins!!!!



I told Carly I’d pimp her out on the site, but can’t seem to find the business card(s) she gave me last night; real suprise.  I’ll get the info up soon, or email me for her stats. She’s pretty awesomesauce!

Sar and her other bestie

Also awesome was my meal:  CRAB Pad-Thai!!! YUM!

Here I am imitating my sister’s “picture face” only to be harassed all night about my own “picture face.” 

 Do you have a picture face!??!?  Upload it and show me!

Help! I am suffering from DOMS!


Woah, I hope my Mom didn’t just get scared, as this sounds like a lethal desease 😉  In reality, DOMS is the acronym for Delayed Onset Muscle soreness.  According to WEBMD, DOMS is

Exercise physiologists refer to the gradually increasing discomfort that occurs between 24 and 48 hours after activity as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), and it is perfectly normal.

“Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is a common result of physical activity that stresses the muscle tissue beyond what it is accustomed to,” says David O. Draper, professor and director of the graduate program in sports medicine/athletic training at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

So…first question you might ask, “what caused this DOMS?”  Well, after half marathon training for months on end, thereby neglecting my “other” muscles, going back to “getting my OM on,” the other day truly did me in.  I also have DOMS quite often, I feel, due to a number of reasons:

1.  Almost NO Potassium whatsoever in my diet.  Me+Bananas do not = greatness.  Trust me.

2.  Almost no stretching before, during or after exercize.  That my friends= laziness.

3. Inconsistant muscle training (hoping to fix this in the future with more cross training.

BUT, for now, the DOMS is KILLING me and thwarting my plans to PR Broad Street!  So, what do I do? Well, I first started by researching the cause and making sure it was “normal.” Then, I reached out to one of my favorite bloggers,  Caitlin and her Husband Kristien, in hopes that K could help me out with some holistic supplements.  He co-owns a holistic clinic in Charlotte and an on-line supplement store.  Anyway, while waiting on that, I did some research of my own to find good foods that help reduce DOMS.  I found this really helpful list that also explains the reasons behind these “DOMS-busters”  from toughlittleworkouts.com :

Pineapple. This tasty fruit is rich in the enzyme, bromelain. After a muscle has been overworked, muscle fiber can actually break and float around the muscle tissue, causing further inflammation. Bromelain breaks down these proteins by digesting the waste product (lactic acid), and on elimination, the muscle inflammation starts to subside.

Research performed on bromelain and how effective this enzyme speeds the healing of soft tissue injury found that the boxers who were given the bromelain healed far quicker than those offered the placebo.

Bromelain is available in supplement form and should be taken three times daily between meals till the pain subsides. It is important to take it between meals, or else the enzyme will only digest the proteins from food not your muscular pain. Look for strengths of 1,800 – 2,400 mcu (milk clotting units) or 1,080 – 1440 gdu (gelatin dissolving units).

Vitamin C. The harder you train the body, the more free radicals are produced. Author of The Natural Physician and naturopath, Mark Stengler N.D. said, “Because your muscles produce more free radicals when you exercise, you should take supplements of vitamins C and E.”

Research carried out by the Western States Chiropractic College on vitamin C in preventing DOMS found that those who were given 3,000 mg developed less soreness in the muscles after a workout than the group given the placebo.

Vitamin C also builds collagen, an essential component that holds the cells of the muscle tissue together. An form of injury from serious to minor requires collagen to repair and rebuild the damaged tissue.

Foods rich in vitamin C include citrus fruits and green leafy vegetables. Take a high enough dose and the nutrients will help to minimize the pain shortly after the workout, healing inwards, while the body sets out to rebuild more muscle tissue. There are various high dose vitamin C supplements. Too high an intake, however, could cause an upset stomach and/or diarrhea.

Berries. They contain polyphenols, powerful antioxidants that protect each cell in the body from free radicals. Studies on various berries found that blueberries contained the highest number of antioxidants.

Vitamin E. Healthy oils such as those found in Vitamin E help to prevent inflammation in the muscles, repair the muscle tissue, and prevent cellular damage.

Vitamin E is abundant in unsalted nuts, especially almonds. Seeds, vegetable oils and spinach are also rich in vitamin E. To act as a preventative for muscular pain in the body, take 400 iu (international units) of vitamin E once a day.

Salmon. Rich in essential fatty acids (EFA), Salmon contains natural compounds that work on muscle soreness and inflammation. Be sure to buy wild or organic salmon as this contains the richest source of EFAs. Salmon purchased from the grocers may contain dyes to enhance the shade of the fish, and they are not caught from the wild.

Herbs to Ease Muscle Soreness

Turmeric. It contains natural compounds to ease muscle inflammation, and its active ingredient is curcumin. Research has found that, besides its natural anti-inflammatory benefits, it helps to combat cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.

Ginger. Known to have similar properties found in ibuprofen, ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory. It contains an enzyme called zingibain, which helps to break down protein waste in the body causing pain and inflammation around the muscle tissue.

As well as its ability to break down protein tissue, ginger contains useful antioxidants that work to get rid of free radicals, which can cause inflammation to occur. Ginger is added to foods, but it can also be purchased in supplement or tincture form. If the pain is acute, take 500 mg of ginger six times daily to ease the symptoms.

Siberian Ginseng. This wonder herb is classed as an adaptogen, which means it helps the body adjust to and recuperate from physical stress. When taken, stress hormones are produced in a greater quantity by the adrenal glands, which help the body to mend more quickly from strenuous, muscle damaging training.

James A Duke author of the Green Pharmacy and former ethnobotanist and botanical consultant with U.S Department of Agriculture states, “Although you may have to take Siberian ginseng regularly for a month before it begins to yield benefits, clinical studies do suggest that ginseng improves athletic performance.”

Siberian ginseng is available as in supplement form in various doses. To help the body cope with stress from tough exercise, take 250 mg of Siberian ginseng thrice daily. Take this supplement for four weeks during training, than reduce or stop the supplement. Seek an extract that contains 0.4% of eleutherosides (help the body to adapt to stressful situations).

Caffeine. Although caffeine is a known stimulant, a small study found that a caffeine supplement lessens the DOMS pain that can occur one or two days after a challenging workout. However, too much caffeine can cause insomnia, muscular twitching, weight loss, and other symptoms. Take a supplement or have a strong cup of black coffee before a workout to alleviate muscle soreness.

I LOVED that list and will be getting on that STAT!  I will also keep you posted on what Dr. HTP advises me!  Do you have any suggestions for ridding yourself of DOMS?


Happy 25th Sistah!

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Today is my Sister’s 25th Birthday!  Yes, I know it is also St. Patty’s Day, and no we are not Irish by Blood (although possibly by relation, still being decided LOL) we say Sara still has some in her 🙂  Anyway, Happy Birthday to my WAY cooler, MUCH more-attractive and even worse…WAY YOUNGER sister!  Love you!



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OK, so I went a lil’ crazy on Urban Outfitters’ website, but no worries. I got some MAJOR steals (noooo not like a “five-finger discount” more like reaaalllyyyy cheap).  LOOK:



Some great buys, no!?!? Listen, if I can convince the Husband, I am SURE I can convince my readers 😉  So, here is how/where I plan on using these fabu new finds:

Spring Work wardrobe extras:

-black cocoon sweater

-peter pan sweater

-boyfriend striped sweater (w/leggins fo sho)

-boucle cardigan (another leggings match)


-Beastie boy tee

-Oversized striped Rugby tee

For the JAMAICA TRIP!  (details coming soon!)

-Off-the shoulder pink dress

-Teal Jaquard romper

Woot woot!  I am psyched!  Have you gotten any good buys lately?  In stores?  Online?

TOP TEN INSTALLMENT 1: Ways a hotel staffer knows a Disney Runner has Occupied the Room

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Hello!  I been prepping this post for a while now, actually since I ran Disney!  So, in true upsanddownes fashion, I have decided to rock my keen knack for making up dumb clever top ten lists, just like my Dad

There I am next to my dad- the physical and mental resemblance is uncanny! 😉 LOL


THE TOP TEN Ways a hotel staffer knows a Disney Runner has Occupied the Room:

10.  There are leftover Gatorade bottles in the fridge, on the floor, or wherever one might’ve “stopped, dropped and drank.”

9.  There are bandaid wrappers (blister busters, I call ’em) scattered about (along with a possible smelly sock that got left).  EW.  No pic needed; that visual was enough for me even!

8.  There are empty plastic bags with various “trashed” race flyers, coupons, etc.

Race Expos are ALWAYS good for that!

7.  Combining the empty wrappers from sport products (GU, sport beans, etc.) could easily re-create the waste of an entire aisle of ________ (insert favorite neighborhood running store here).

6.  CORDS CORDS EVERYWHERE- oh, we’ve all left a random camera or Garmin charger (lesser-known to hotel employees usually and can be contrued as a torture device) in the socket…or not

5.  The empty pizza box…yup carb loading is BEST when combined with cheesey goodness (that’s only my expert opinion)

4.  The safety pins…Runners, need I say more?!?!

3.  Random post-race garb such as the lone compression sleeve, recovery sock or ace bandage…

I, for one, have had to say goodbye to many a shin sleeve post-race (sometimes due to my shoddy memory)

2. The glitter, bobby pins and everything else princess-y used to get princess-a-fied


1.  The random tutu left on the floor (kinda gives it away)

HAHAH I crack myself up!  Do I crack YOU up?!?! 🙂  Add your own to my list!


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Knee sleeves, that is.  Unfortunately, my running game came to a screaching hault last week, so this week I have been cross training with the ol’ Cybex

And getting my “OM” on at Shanti Yoga Shala, Shiya’s AWESOMESAUCE Yoga Studio.

Yea, so THIS should be really interesting this Sunday:

Colon Cancer Coalition

I had signed up for this awesome 10K (last year it was a 5K and was my first race ever!  Recap HERE) a while ago, but becuase of my leg issues as of late, I have NOT been able to train the way I would have liked.  BUT, I made a decision: I am SOOOOO doing it!  Many reasons:

1.  Iwill  have been off my leg for 10 days at that point and will be MORE than antsy to run (with fresh legs!)

2.  My last “long run” was a not-too-shabby half marathon only 3 weeks ago, so this distance should seem easy peasy

3. I promise myself that if I feel pain I WILL take it easy, but I’d LOVE to PR!

4.  I am lunching with my girl, Lisa Paige after, so of COURSE I am sticking to my original plan!

What are your thoughts?

While you are pondering, I was up soooo early yesterday and experienced daylight savinigs time at its greatest:  DEER!


Sunday Relaxin’ (with BONUS Playlist)

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Woah woah I bet THAT title caught your eye 😉  Anyway, wanted to share my chillin’ list #awesomesauce!

Huh.  That’s large, eh?  Oh well.  Anyway, with a side of

How did you spend YOUR Sunday?!?

I gained a small child tonight.

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No, seriously. Totally worth it though.  Husband and I went to a restaurant new to us, Adsum.  And while the couple next to us made me want to blow my brains out the enitre time (think screaming match between Fran Drescher and Greg from Dharma and Gre).  Yea.  Awesomesauce. The atmosphere was cozy (not all in a good way) and not too worthy of a photo op; quite dark too.  Anywhoooo the food was INSANE…let me share the experience in pics…

By the way, the camera ate my burger and fries made with duck fat- sorry! 😉

OK, now clear the drool from your keyboard and tell me:  What was the most decadent thing you’ve ever had at a restaurant?

UPDATE:  OH man, I reaize my ma probably just had a heart attack upon reading the title of the post…and then a SEVERE let down when she realized what I meant!  lol 😉