Posted in Events, Life, Year Review

Looking Back at 2018

Another year has come and gone. 2018 was a good year for me. So many things took place this year. One of the most exciting things that happened was I found I was pregnant with my first baby. I also got to travel and take part in fun races. Here are my highlights of 2018.

Pregnancy
My boyfriend and I always talked about having a baby, but we didn’t know it would happen so soon. My boyfriend wanted a boy and I wanted a girl. I was thrilled when I found out I was having a girl. This is a blessing and I can’t believe our little one is almost here. I spent the majority of 2018 being pregnant and while I did miss out on a few things, I will cherish all the little moments with my baby. For example, the first time I heard her heartbeat and saw her on the ultrasound, the first time she kicked, and when my belly bump started to get bigger.

Moving
Another thing that happened in 2018 was that my family and I moved out of Montebello. This was after living there for almost 10 years. We moved about 20 minutes from Montebello and while I do miss my old city, I am very happy and comfortable in my new city. Only bad things are that I live further from my boyfriend and my commute to work is a bit longer. When I was in Montebello, I was able to leave my house 5 minutes before starting work and get there on time. Now I need to leave at least 25-30 minutes before I start work. I give myself the extra 5-10 minutes just in case there is traffic of construction going on.

Travel
In February, I spent the weekend in Orlando by myself. I had gone to Orlando before back in 2017, but this was my first ever solo trip. The reason I went to Orlando was to take part in the Disney Princess Challenge. This is a series of races hosted by Run Disney. I ran a 10k on Saturday morning and then a half marathon on Sunday morning. I really enjoyed my solo trip and I’m so glad I got to experience it before becoming a mom.

In March, I ran a half marathon in San Diego. I normally travel with my family or friends, but this time I went with my boyfriend. This was our first weekend away together. It was long overdue. We have been together for 5 years and that was our first trip. Hoping we can take more weekend trips with our baby girl in the upcoming years.

I decided my last trip before the baby’s arrival should be a fun one. What could be more fun than almost a week in Las Vegas? In August, I went to Las Vegas with Giovanna for a few days. There were many things I couldn’t do like drink or ride on the New York New York roller coasters, but I still had fun. The best part of the Las Vegas trip was getting to see the Backstreet Boys in concert. I also got to try a lot of good food and we walked so much every day that I was always walking at least 10,000 steps, which was my goal.

Running
I ran almost 300 miles. I’m sure if I hadn’t been pregnant, I would’ve ran more. Regardless, I am still happy that I was able to run 300 miles. Not only that, but I was able to run one half marathon, one 10k, and two 5k races while pregnant. I wasn’t going to let my pregnancy slow me down!

At the beginning of 2018, I did my best half marathon 2 hours and 9 mins in Pasadena. This was so close to my goal of running in under 2 hours. I’m hoping that in 2019, I can reach the goal. I know this will require a lot of training runs from me, most of which will take place in the summer.

As I mentioned earlier, I did the Disney Princess Challenge in Orlando. I love to challenge myself. This was the first time I ran 19.3 miles in 2 days! What makes the Disney Princess Challenge runs even more fun is the fact that you get to run through the Disney parks and take pictures with the characters. I got to take pictures with Anna and Elsa from Frozen, Belle and Gaston from Beauty and the Beast, and even Buzz Lightyear to name a few. I won’t take part in the races this year, but I plan to be there in 2020!

In 2018, I ran the LA Marathon for the first time. I did not run in under 5 hours like I had planned, but I did improve by 6 minutes over my first marathon. Not going to lie, this was a tough marathon for me. It didn’t help that at the start of the run, I did some have pain in my left knee. I also didn’t follow my training plan as well as I should have. That’s okay, every time I run a marathon or any other race, I always learn ways I can improve my time and my training. The hills after mile 20 were the worst. Now that I know what to expect, I will definitely train for that in 2020.

Concerts
I went to see Brad Paisley in concert with my mom. My mom isn’t fan of country music, but she really likes Kane Brown, who was one of the openers for Brad Paisley. I had to choose between going to see Tim McGraw (my favorite country singer) and Brad Paisley. I decided to see Brad Paisley and it was worth it. He is such a great singer live and entertaining. I really like the song he sang with Carrie Underwood, who sang her parts via satellite/video.

Seeing the Backstreet Boys was the highlight of my Las Vegas trip. My only complaint is that I wish the concert had been longer. They played some of their newer music, along with their classics. It’s great to see them still together after all these years. They are touring this year. They are scheduled to play in Anaheim and Los Angeles. I’m hoping I can see them again. Fingers crossed that I make it to their concert.

Favorite Movies
Normally I am the kind of person who waits for movies to come out on DVD or Netflix instead of going to the movie theaters to watch. In fact, most of the time I only go to the movies once or maybe even twice a year. This year, I ended up going to 7 movies, which is a lot for me. Who knows if next year I will be able to watch as many movies since I will have my little one. Of course, I will make an exception to watch the new Avengers movies. Here are the movies I went to watch in 2018. The little kid movies are the ones I took my sisters to go watch.

Sherlock Gnomes
Black Panther
50 Shades
Hotel Transylvania
Avengers Infinity War
Goosebumps 2
Crimes of Grindewald

2018 was a memorable year for me. I can’t wait to see what 2019 will bring for us!

Posted in Running, Travel

Princess Challenge Weekend

I don’t know why it has taken me so long to post this trip recap. This trip took place almost three months ago!!! Oh well, better late than never!

February 23-26 2018
I have travelled to a few different places throughout the United States- Portland, Oregon, Washington DC, Las Vegas, to name a few. However, I usually travel with other people, either my travelling partner Giovanna, my sister Destiny, or my family. I had never travelled anywhere alone. That is, until February. That’s right, I went on my first solo trip at 27 years old.

I first travelled to Orlando, Florida last year in March 2017 for WrestleMania. I was there for almost a week and went with my travelling partner, Giovanna. This time I went to Orlando for four days and I went for the Disney Princess Weekend. I was there for about five days and had sucha blast!

I have to admit that the thought of it freaked me out so much!!! In fact, there were a few times that I even considered cancelling my trip rather than going alone. But after thinking about all the cons and pros of travelling alone, looking online, and speaking to someone who has gone on many solo trips, I decided to go for it. After all, what was the harm in travelling solo at least once?

Airplane Ride/Airport
Just getting to the airport was a mission! I walked to the bus stop from my house. Then I took the Metro Gold line to the Union Station, from there I got on a shuttle to LAX. I barely made it to the plane on time. I got to LAX ten mins before the gates closed. Lucky for me, there was no line for security checkpoint. As soon as they checked me and my things, I ran all the way to my gate. I got there four minutes before they closed my gates. I have never been that close. I am normally at the airport at least an hour before my flight is scheduled to leave, sometimes even two hours. I was so scared that I would miss my plane.

I got to Orlando airport around 430am/5am on Friday. I stayed there until about 830am/9am. I just listened to my ipod and used my tablet. I also ate chick fil a for breakfast. I think I even fell asleep for a while. I finally decided I had been there long enough and went to the expo to pick up what I needed for the two races.

Expo
The expo to pick up the bibs and shirts was huge. In fact, they had three different locations to pick everything up. The first building is where you pick up your bib. Then you have to go to another building for your shirt. In the second building, they also had non Disney vendors. I bought some running stickers and energy gels. Then I went to the last building to pick up some pins I had preoredered and in this building they had Disney vendors. I wanted to buy everything! They had such a huge selection of things, including cute leggings, pins, cute shirts, anything Disney Princess thing you can think of! It was way more than I had planned to spend. Since the lines were really long, I decided not to get anything after all.

Hotel
After the expo, I decided to go to my hotel to check in. The hotel I stayed at was in Kissimmee, Florida about 15 minutes away from Disney World. Unfortunately, it wasn’t ready when I got there. The people at the hotel told me I could go to the pool for a while, so I went in for an hour. It was really hot outside and the pool felt really good. I went to see if it was ready and they still needed more time to finish cleaning. So I decided to walk to Target, which was about 1.5 miles away, and window shop. Went to eat lunch at Burger King and then I walked back to the hotel, which was finally ready.

I spent three nights there. For the price I paid, I was expecting a small room. I was shocked when I walked into my hotel room. It was much larger than I expected. The first thing I saw when I walked in was the kitchen. It had a full size kitchen with a fridge, microwave, stove, dishes and utensils, and a sink. Next up was a dining room for four, the first bathroom, and even a living room with two small couches and a television. As if that wasn’t enough, there was a bedroom for me with a television, another bathroom, and get this, a Jacuzzi in my room!

It was awesome staying in this room, but I admit that I did get a bit scared at night, to the point where I slept with all the lights on and the door locked. The first and second nights I only slept about 3/4 hours each. The final night I slept maybe 5/6 hours, which still wasn’t enough.

Saturday morning I ran my 10k race. I did pretty well. I didn’t really go anywhere once I got back to my hotel because I didn’t want to be too tired for my half marathon and because I was a bit scared to go out by myself.

Sunday morning I was at the race by 330am! I went early to take pictures in the morning. After the race, I took some pictures with some of the Disney Princesses. Instead of going to the hotel, I decided to go to Downtown Disney. I knew if I went to the hotel, I would fall asleep and not want to leave the room for the rest of the day. I changed out of my race clothes and wore my three medals around.

Disney Springs/Downtown Disney
I went there last year. We went on the last day, so I didn’t have much money to spend. This time I was able to visit Hard Rock Café and got myself a mac and cheese burger. Kind of on the pricey side, but so worth it! I also got a creme brulee from one of the bakeries and a strawberry frozen margarita. I basically spent my whole time at Disney Springs eating lol One of my favorite things to eat was the poutine.

Universal City Walk

On Monday, my last day in Orlando, I decided to visit Universal City Walk after checking out. One of my favorite things about going to Universal City Walk last year was going to the Chocolate Emporium and getting a red velvet milkshake, which had a giant red velvet cupcake on top! So I couldn’t wait to go back. I also went to Fat Tuesday and got myself a blue raspberry icee. I went to the movies and watched Fifty Shades Freed. After my day trip at City Walk, I headed over to the airport to go back home.

Trip Back Home
After the scare I had getting to LAX really late, I made sure to get to MCO at least 2 hours early. I am so glad I did, because the security checkpoint line was huge! I had a stop in Colorado. Right when we got off the plane, we could feel the freezing cold air! I guess we were close to the mountains. I was only there for an hour and then I was back on the plane to LA. I got to LAX around midnight, I was exhausted when I got home.

Travelling solo was a lot more fun than I ever imagined! I would definitely recommend that everyone travels solo at least once in their lifetime. Yes, it can be scary, especially for someone like me who is an introvert and very shy.

My only complaint about travelling is having to use Uber or Lyft all the time. It can get pretty expesnive, especilly when going to Disney World or Downtown Orlando. I would rather use the public transportation or rent a car.

My next solo vacation will be a weekend trip to San Francisco during the summer. It will be another racecation, I will be running the San Francisco Half Marathon!

Posted in Events, Football/Soccer, Life, music, Running, School, Travel, Work, Year Review

Looking Back at 2017

A lot of people say 2017 was a bad year, but for me personally 2017 was a great year! Here are a few things that happened in 2017.

Graduated from Cal State LA with a bachelors degree in history
After so many years of going to school, both back in community college and Cal State LA, i could finally say I got my degree. It was tough at times, going to work part time and going to school full time. To make things harder, I didn’t have a car for most of my college years, which meant i was usually going to school and work on the bus. It took me a little longer than I had expected to get my degree, but better later than never right?

Got a job at my local gym
In August I decided that I needed to get a second job because I wasn’t getting enough hours at the supermarket where I was cashier. So i decided to apply to a few local areas. Someone I knew from the gym where I have been going since 2016 told me they were hiring there. I decided to give it a shot even though I felt there was no way they would hire me. I was wrong. Within two weeks of Applying, I got hired! I was so happy. For three months, I worked both jobs. It was hard at times, but I decided to stick with it. At the end of 2017, I decided two jobs was two much and I needed to pick one job. My choice was easy. I picked the local gym.

Which brings me to this major thing i did in 2017. I finally left the job I had for 5 years.
This was pretty scary, not going to lie. I was not happy at this job, I spent all year being miserable, but I was too scared to quit. I had originally planned to quit in May after my graduation, then I decided summer I would get more hours so I Should stay a little longer. then decided I would quit in September, that didn’t happen either. I said I would quit around Thanksgiving, that didn’t happen either. I finally said that I would quit December 31, and i didn’t want to keep postponing it. I gave the manager my two weeks notice on December 15, 2017, the whole process was easier than I had expected. December 31, 2017 was my last day and it was a really long 8 hour shift. Before I quit, they gave me a certificate for being there five years. It was bittersweet. On one hand, I was happy to be getting away from retail life and rude, demanding, self entitle customers, but I will miss the friends that I made while working there.

I ran my first marathon
I never thought I would one day be able to run 26.2 miles, but on my 26th birthday, I decided I wanted to celebrate turning 26 years old in a big way, so that’s when I decided to run a marathon. My first ever marathon was in Long Beach, California and it took me about 5 hours and 17 minutes to finish. it took me four months to train for it. I thought this would be my only marathon ever, but I signed up for the LA Marathon, March 2018, and I am currently training for that.

Went to Orlando for the first time to attend Wrestlemania
I went with my friend Giovanna. We have gone to Portland, Oregon, Washington DC, and now Orlando together. We went to Universal City Walk, where I had the best tasting milkshake ever, red velvet with a red velvet cake. Yum! We also went to Universal Studios, where we went on so many rides and got to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I tried butterbeer for the first time. Besides Wrestlemania, we also went to Monday Night Raw, NXT Takeover, and the WWE Hallf of Fame. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I had so much fun. We got to meet a few wrestlers at one of the events, inclduing Baron Corbin and R Truth. Wrestlemania was amazing. Our seats were so close. We got to see Undertaker retire, Seth Rollins vs Triple H, Hardy Boyz make their return, John Cena propose to Nikki Bella, and many other things.

Went to Las Vegas
I had never been to Las Vegas, which is crazy because I am 26 years old and most people go there for their 21st birthday. I never had much interest. Until I decided to run the Rock’n’Roll Half Marathon and 5k. I went with my mom, grandpa, and three of my sisters. My mom drove us there and it took forever to get there. I had fun there, i didn’t gamble once, but i did have fun walking around and trying the all the different drinks. One of my favorite things that I did was getting on the roller coaster at the New York New York hotel.

Visited San Francisco twice
The first time was with my family, my mom, three sisters, and brother. We did all the touristy things, like visit the Golden Gate Bridge and the Full House/Fuller House house. We ate crepes and clam chowder, which was super good. The second time I went, it was only with my grandpa and my sister Destiny. I went to run the San Francisco Half Marathon. It was one of my best races. I can’t wait to go back to San Francisco this year. It is a much nicer place than i ever thought. It is one of my top favorite places to run.

Went to a Tim McGraw concert
Tim McGraw is by far one of my favorite country singers. I had the chance to see him and his wife Faith Hill in concert at the Staples during the summer. I loved it. It was so great seeing them. I was so happy when they announced they would be coming back in 2018, I have to see them again. I also discovered a new singer whose music I love. Her name is Rachel Platten and I feel like her song Fight Song is my theme song in life! Haha

Watched my two favorite soccer teams play each other
Went to the Coliseum in Downtown LA with my sister Angelina to watch Real Madrid vs Manchester City. Manchester City won, but it was fun just seeing them. While I was there, I ran into my friend from work and his friend, who is a manager at my old job.

These are the major things that happened in 2017. I was also blessed to meet people who I now consider my friends, I lost a couple friends, but made new ones. I spent time with my family, boyfriend, and friends. Hope 2018 is just as good or even better than 2017 was!

Posted in Travel

Florida and Wrestlemania 33

I used to say that I would never go to Florida. Sure they have Disney World and Universal Studios (which is bigger than the one we have here in California), but every time there’s a story on the news about a gruesome murder of something crazy happening, it’s usually in Florida. Also, Florida has hurricanes there. Lastly, Florida is a red state, so I thought I would be uncomfortable and out of place there because of my ethnicity. But I ended up changing my mind when my friend told me that Wrestlemania 33 was going to be in Florida. It sounded fun so I had to go. This was my last spring break of college and a little graduation present to myself. We had planned this trip since October 2016 and we couldn’t wait for April to get here.

We left on Thursday night from California, around 1030/11pm. We got to Florida on Friday morning, 6am their time. We checked in to our hotel and fell asleep. We had planned to see Charlotte and get out pictures taken with her, but unfortunately we got there too late. We went to eat at IHOP. Later on we went to the WWE Hall of Fame. It was weird seeing all the WWE Superstars all dressed up and with their wives or husbands and boyfriends or girlfriends. We saw Roman Reigns, Charlotte, Becky Lynch, Jericho, pretty much all the wrestlers. Our seats were pretty good. We sat near the entrance where they passed by.

Saturday was Wrestlemania Axxess. We went to two sessions and got to meet a few WWE Superstars and get pictures with them. The five people that I took pcs with were R-Truth, Mark Henry, Cedric Alexander, Curt Hawkins, and Baron Corbin. I didn’t get my favorite though, Roman Reigns, because it costs $190 to get his autograph since he was a premium vip. Maybe next year. There were so many people there! Lines were at least an hour or more each. I bought myself a Roman Reigns pin and an autographed Roman Reigns picture.

Sunday was Wrestlemania. In the morning, I went to the gym and ran 8 miles on the treadmill. I took about an hour and 35 minutes to finish. After the gym, we went to breakfast. Then back to the hotel to get ready. Although Wrestlemania started at 5pm Florida time, we had to be downstairs by the bus by 2pm. It was a good thing we left early because not only did it take us a while to get to the stadium. There was so many people there, more than 70,000, it took us over an hour to get inside the stadium. We sat on the field, not ringside, but close enough.

Monday was Universal Studios’ Islands of Adventures in the morning and Monday Night Raw at night. We chose Islands of Adventures because it was different that the one we have in California. Next time I will visit the other park. My favorite ride was the Hulk ride. I finally got to try butterbeer and it was so delicious! I loved it.

Tuesday we went to Downtown Disney which is called Disney Springs. Then we came back home to California.