New Year, New Challenges


Happy 2015!  A little photo journey below of my recent travels…

Moscow, Russia!  A cold day walking through the city and checking out St. Basil's Cathedral.

Moscow, Russia! A cold day walking through the city and checking out St. Basil’s Cathedral.

I can’t believe I’m entering year five of blogging bliss!

Cool view from a coffee shop window in Moscow.

Cool view from a coffee shop window in Moscow.

Brussels at night.

Brussels at night.

And with a new year comes endless possibilities and a clean slate.

View of Red Square from St. Basil's Cathedral.

View of Red Square from St. Basil’s Cathedral.

I have a lot of ideas brewing in my head related to my fitness goals this year and still need some time to sort them out.

Brussels at night, Grand Place.

Brussels at night, Grand Place.

These last few weeks, though, I took a hiatus from all things fitness and took a trip to Russia (over Christmas) and Belgium (over New Year’s).

Ice skating in Gorky Park (Moscow, Russia).

Ice skating in Gorky Park (Moscow, Russia).

Ice skating Christmas night in Gorky park with my friend Jackie.

Ice skating Christmas night in Gorky park with my friend Jackie.

What an amazing adventure!  While I did a ton of walking (in snow boots most of the time, no less) and ice skated on Christmas night, I also ate a lot (especially in Belgium–waffles, chocolate and beer make for a great diet, right?).

Shop four of six on a New Year's Eve chocolate tour in Brussels.

Shop four of six on a New Year’s Eve chocolate tour in Brussels.

14 Brussels (waffle)

Chocolate and strawberry covered waffle…mmm…who’s counting calories?!

The pretty green chocolates were literally to die for!

The pretty green chocolates were literally to die for!

But no matter, I was with good friends and so very happy away from the everyday priorities of life back home.

No, that's not the makeup counter...it's CHOCOLATE!

No, that’s not the makeup counter…it’s CHOCOLATE!

My friend Lily gives the thumbs up for this chocolate shop!

My friend Lily gives the thumbs up for this chocolate shop!

And while some find travel to a foreign land stressful, to me it’s somewhat freeing when you don’t understand the language being spoken.

Moreover, “disconnecting” from technology–be it the phone, texting, email, or browsing Facebook was also a welcome respite.  I have returned feeling a bit more whole again.

Pretty light displays in Moscow, with my friend Laura.

Pretty light displays in Moscow, with my friend Laura.

This was a statue that we saw while walking through a park in Moscow.  All I can say is, creepy!!

This was a statue that we saw while walking through a park in Moscow. All I can say is, creepy!!

In the new year, I want to live a simpler life–to more fully enjoy the everyday, to wake up each morning praising God for what He’s done in my life, to truly enjoy moments with friends and family, to quiet my mind from the many to-do’s that float around my brain, and to make more me-time

The churches are so amazing to see in Moscow.

The churches are so amazing to see in Moscow.

(after all, as much as I love being productive and spending time with my friends, every night does not need to be filled with priorities and get-togethers).  Already this week I have incorporated some of these things and what a difference it makes!

Hat shopping at a market in Moscow!

Hat shopping at a market in Moscow!

The Kremlin, Moscow.

The Kremlin, Moscow.

Moscow Christmas market.

Moscow Christmas market.

As for the blog this year, I have some ideas up my sleeve.

Ice skating with friends, Lily and Loren.

Ice skating with friends, Lily and Loren.

For one, I have already signed up for my very first Spartan race (perhaps with a little trepidation) that takes place in August.  I figured this would be a great motivator to work on my upper body strength for the obstacles.

We were sad at first that the European Parliament building was closed, but then we remembered we were in Belgium for New Year's!

We were sad at first that the European Parliament building was closed, but then we remembered we were in Belgium for New Year’s!

Starbucks in Moscow!

Starbucks in Moscow!

I also still hope to do another triathlon–aiming for an Olympic distance.  Race suggestions (and training buddies) are most welcome.  I’d like to incorporate more guest blog pieces on the site, as well as some product reviews this year.  But the main thing is to have fun with it all and spread some inspiration to others.

The oldest church in Moscow!

The oldest church in Moscow!

A beautiful church in Moscow that we visited.

A beautiful church in Moscow that we visited.

Here’s to a fabulous 2015 to you!

I loved all the decorations in Moscow!

I loved all the decorations in Moscow!

About mileoneandcounting

I'm a young professional living in the Washington, DC area. Since moving here in 2007 I have honed a passion for running and fitness. Growing up I played soccer and softball (and tested track & field for one year). After college I ran a few 5K races, but running was really only a means to staying in shape for me. Never in my wildest imagination had I thought I'd ever run a marathon, let alone three. Nor did I think I'd get the running bug after doing so, but I'll admit I'm hooked! Over the years my blog has grown into so much more than a running blog though. Sometimes I have deep thoughts. Other times I'm simply sharing a training story or a review of a product. Here's the place where you'll learn about me through my many adventures--even I enjoy going back to re-read some posts from time to time. I've also been able to hone my love for health and wellness through my business called IDLife which stands for Individually Designed Life. I'd love to help inspire you to live your best life yet so please don't hesitate to reach out to me and may my words resonate with you. See you on the trails...
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