saturday in the park

Wearing: Blush Ballet Flats // Crop Top (can't find, but this one is ADORABLE) // Midi Skirt (sold out, but check your stores!) // Blush Motorcycle Jacket (sold out, but also super cute and similar) // Earrings // Stroller (we bought ours used for MUCH less, check out "Little Britches" on Facebook!  

We were graced with a little more spring preview weather the past few days, so of course we spent the majority of our time outdoors (I'm actually typing this up sitting in our gazebo!)  I've been dying to get into some new spring clothes - to be honest, I hard get dressed in the winter save a few holiday parties - so it was the perfect time to debut this full, polka dotted midi skirt.  It's from TARGET.  Darrell thought it was Kate Spade and who can blame him?  Nope, a fraction of what that would have cost, and surprisingly practical for playground time!  

Who says you can't look a little glam pushing a stroller?  


the weekender

Just a couple pictures from our trip to the zoo this weekend!  It was 75 degrees (in February!!!) if you can believe that and we had the best day really soaking up the sunshine.  Claire ooh and ahhhhhhed over the monkeys, said "oh my goodness!!" several times, it was hysterical.  If you don't already, follow me on Snapchat for funny little videos @maryhayes


january favorites

I've had such a hard time coming up with just links or just clothes to share with you all lately - I have a lot I want to share - so I thought it might be more fun to share a general monthly favorites post on the blog instead!  

I hope you guys enjoy it and let me know what you think!  

Favorite Website:  Morning Routines

I'm a bit voyeuristic and always curious about how others are using and maximizing their time - especially successful people who I find inspiring!  When I stumbled upon "Morning Routines" I was totally hooked.  Maybe it sounds ridiculous, but I could spend hours just reading about how people spend their pre work time.  I'm a firm believer that it's the most important part of everyone's day.  

Favorite Quote:

I'm completely obsessed with my Happiness Planner (unsure if I like it more than the Day Designer I used in 2015....maybe equal) and every day there is an inspirational quote at the top of the page.  Sometimes I barely glance at it, sometimes it's something that really resonates with me, like this: 

"The three components of happiness are; something to do, something to love, and something to look forward to."  

I really believe that's true, especially the aspect of being busy - I'm absolutely happiest when my time is occupied - yes, as a parent of course sometimes I wish I had more leisure time.  It's a balance.  But I really shouldn't complain about my lack of free time, because it's a blessing, mostly.  And of course, someone or something to love and something to look forward to speak for themselves!  

Favorite Random Thing: Marble Laptop Case

I'm notorious for banging and dropping my electronics, made no better lately by a toddler who is a bit of a tornado, so the last time my Macbook Air fell off the couch I figured it would be best if I did something about it.  This one is so attractive (I mean, I'd be lying if I said I didn't get it at least partially for the pretty Instagrams.)  

Favorite Workout Program: Progress Pure Curve Guide + Kayla Itsines' BBG

I've bounced around quite a bit in the past two months as far as what routine I've been doing (and I'm notoriously undedicated to just one method) but the one thing I've been doing at the gym lately is a combination of the Progress Pure Curve Guide (weight lifting regimen) and Kayla Itsines' BBG Circuits.  Basically, I warm up for 5 minutes walking on the treadmill at a 5% incline.  Then, I run through a heavy barbell lift (ranging from deadlifts, back squats, bench presses) and a 4-5 other lifts targeting minor muscle groups (lat pulldowns, upright rows, dumbell presses, and the like) and finish with 15 minutes of Kayla Itsines - that would combine things like burpees, tuck jumps, push ups, sit ups, jump squats, mountain climbers, etc in quick succession.  The entire workout takes me about an hour and I feel like I've really mixed a solid group of warm up, strength training, and high intensity cardio into that hour.  

Favorite Blog Post: Love Is A Verb

Just read it, and feel the power in it.  "Love is not stationary."

Favorite Subscription: My Sweat Style

This is a genius service,  it's basically Stitch Fix for workout clothes!  Activewear is basically all I wear at this point in my life - chasing a toddler + gym time equals me in leggings 24/7.  Also, I have no time to shop, and this service delivers indie brands that have come out with some fabulous things a little more unusual that what's on the racks at Nike and Lululemon.  This is just a snippet of my favorites from my first box.  After seeing this post Sweat Style got in touch to offer a special code to Hayes Etc readers:

Enter code "SHARETHESWEAT3609" to get $20 off your 1st box!

Favorite Breakfast: Proats! (Protein Oats)

Since beginning IIFYM, I've been so much more focused on including protein in my diet.  As a pescetarian, it's a little difficult - of course I eat fish, but you don't want to eat too much fish (mercury, ahem) so I try to pack it in other ways.  When I make oatmeal on the stovetop, I add a little extra liquid and right before it finishes cooking, I toss in a scoop of protein powder and 1/2 cup of egg whites.  This fluffs everything up and thickens it, making for an incredibly filling breakfast that has over 40 grams of protein once I add the tbsp of peanut butter on top!  I also add half a banana (I give the other half to Claire) and a drizzle of honey.  So delicious.  

Favorite photo:

THIS KID!! She loves popcorn more than anything - see the bowl sitting next to her?  That is popcorn happiness right there.  


making new habits, ditching some old ones

yoga post extended side crow arm balance lululemon

You might be wondering, where has this blog even been?  

Or, you might not.  Anybody out there?  It's been January after all, time where our friends all either turn into hibernating bears or overactive resolutioners - I tend to fall into that latter camp!  January has always been a historically motivated month for me.  I get completely sucked into the promise of a fresh start, and I'm a little (a lot?) type A so I love a challenge.  I had already been doing Kayla Itsines' BBG (check that out here, not sponsored) which is way intense but when you combine it with a not so stellar holiday diet and some random 3 mile runs it wasn't like I was making any big fitness strides.  

My yoga studio does a January challenge called the "bender" and for $30, you can go to yoga every day in January and if you manage that, you get February for free.  I signed up and figured why not?  
Then I decided if I was going to do yoga every day I probably should try to keep my energy up and work on my nutrition, so I also decided to give up alcohol for the month of January.  

I could've stopped there, huh?  

yoga pose peacock mayurasana lululemon old navy active southtown yoga

But......my running was getting a little boring and with the cold weather, it was getting hard to get motivated to hit the pavement, so I joined a training team that does long runs on Sundays.  I also continued with BBG.  Whew.  Am I really annoying yet?  

yoga pose bird of paradise lululemon lucy activewear southtown yoga

You might think that after all this I'm getting ready to tell you I got completely burned out and that this all went up in flames, but weirdly, it didn't.  I did 30 days of yoga.  I ran twice a week, one speed run and one long run.  I continued with BBG until last week.  I nailed poses I'd never dreamed I'd actually get, like peacock pose shown above.  I didn't miss alcohol - not even really a little bit.  I also was probably the happiest I've ever been in the month of January - a month that is historically rough for all of us with its short days, cold temps, and lack of holiday gatherings!  I had ENDORPHINS to look forward to every day and it was kind of the best thing ever, and still is.  

southtown yoga lululemon long run forest park

The biggest surprise?  How much I didn't miss booze.  I've not recently been a very heavy drinker per se, but a glass of wine or two on a weeknight wasn't unusual and neither was 4-5 on a weekend night.  I always kind of figured, what was the hurt if I was still getting in runs and BBG workouts 3-4 days a week?  At the core of it, there wasn't a big problem there, but there was the allure of what could be.  Truly, it was disappointing to my inner beer nerd/wino that.....I felt SO.  MUCH.  BETTER.  

Within a couple days I was practically bouncing out of bed at 5:30, with time to spare before Claire woke up every day.  I pushed further in my workouts and had more energy all day long.  Most apparently, I didn't lose a pound on the scale but my body fat percentage got a bit lower and my abs actually started to show up - something I've never seen before regardless of how much cardio I do or how much I restrict my calories.  On the last night of the month I actually went out to celebrate the end of the yoga bender, had a couple glasses of wine, didn't enjoy much past the second one and came home by 11:30.  It's official - I replaced wanting a cocktail with wanting to feel energized and clear headed all the time.  

title boxing club lululemon workout fitspo

So what's my current plan?  Well, right now I'm following a mixture of the Progress Pure Curve Guide (which is straight up weight lifting) 4 days a week, some Tone It Up workouts as warm ups before my weight lifting sessions, running one speed run and one long run with the training group each week for half marathon training, and Yogahour classes 3 days a week.  Yes, that means that about 3 days a week I work out more than once, at least once very very early in the morning.  I also mix it up with a dance, boxing, barre, or some random new class once a week or so.  I'm loving the group runs more than I ever thought I would - it is so motivating to have a pace group that sticks together, and knowing they expect me to show up makes me want to wake up and run!  

While I was doing the Tone It Up Nutrition Plan for about 4 weeks, I quickly realized that my goal wasn't so much to lose weight as it was to gain muscle and reduce my body fat percentage (also, um, I was hungry ALL THE TIME on the Tone It Up nutrition plan, possibly because I'm still breastfeeding) so I switched over to tracking my macros.  You might have seen the hashtag #iifym?  My calculation has me eating a high protein/moderate carb/low fat diet- I learned how to calculate my macros to suit my goals this using THIS book, which I highly recommend.  I eat about 2000 calories a day and I lost 2 pounds this week.  Don't pay someone online to do it for you, btw.  It's silly, and there are plenty of easily accessible formulas for your goals (I'd be happy to do a post on it if anyone is interested!)  Once I've finished up the Curve Guide I'll be switching to the author's one year weight training program.  

So you might be wondering how I stayed motivated all month long and still now?  A couple of things.  For one, I feel great.  For another, I started a fitness related Instagram account.  I had been encouraged to do this by a number of online fitness gurus and had been hesitant for a quite a while, but there is an amazing fitness community online and through putting myself out there I even found the Tone It Up community in St Louis and got together with the girls for a meet up!  My fitness Instagram is here, separate from my family account that is mostly photos of Claire because I mostly post my workouts, food, and to be honest lots of sweaty selfies!  

So that's what I've been doing!  Along with a lot of being a wife, mother, daughter, and employee but I just thought I'd fill you in on what had been occupying the bit of time I previously spent blogging.  I know I've done a few fitness related posts before, but if you're interested in more, please let me know!  I'd love to write them - detailed workouts, what I ate, reviews of the gear or supplements I've bought lately, whatever!  We'll get back to the regularly scheduled baby photo programming later this week, cross my heart!  
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