Monday Round-Up: MADness, travel, music + food.

It’s 10pm on a Monday and I’m sitting at the dining room table eating avocado and heirloom cherry tomatoes because: a) why the hell not? and b) it’s been that kind of a week.  Last Monday feels like it could have been yesterday, or a year ago, so at this point the only thing to really do is enjoy my snack and get set for the week ahead — starting with right now.

There’s a lot happening right now in Charlottesville and Charleston, all good, and all full steam ahead.  In Charleston we’re just over two weeks from our soft opening, and it’s all hands on deck to make sure our schedules are aligned with having coverage across the board.  We’re all still executing on to-do’s in our own little silos, but the over-arching mother-of-a-goal is to make sure the doors are opening with everything complete.

MADcharleston window graphic

In Charlottesville we just announced an event that has been long in our minds, and relatively lengthy in production, but will undoubtedly be a great kick off to summer.  We’re hosting an interval rave with our friends from TruPilates and Opal Yoga at our space in the IX on Saturday June 7th.

MADrave at IX

[click on the poster to be routed to the event registration]

If you told me that any one of these event partners were having an event you’d immediately have my interest, but just seeing all of them bundled together in one single event just makes my heart nearly explode with happiness.  My goal for this event is not to just stop here (of course it isn’t) but actually to grow it outside of our space onto the lawn of IX for a bigger and more inclusive community event.  With all the changes happening on our property with the art park, I’m thinking that it could be amazing.

Speaking of amazing…Friday night was the long awaited Delta Rae show at the Visulite in Charlotte.   I planned this as my friend Cara’s birthday present this year, and despite the fact that she had never heard them and I was still reeling from missing them in Charlottesville, it worked out perfectly.

Delta Rae

This band is amazing; from their stage presence, to lyrics, and the fact that every damn one of them sings and plays instruments.  It was hands down one of the best shows I’ve been to in a long time, and I would have paid double and gone back every night for a week just to linger in the experience a little while longer.  And because that’s pretty much all I’m looking for – great lyrics and the enveloping comfort that comes from being invited in to someone else’s feelings and experiences.  That’s what their music is for me, and when I’m away from it too long I really start to disconnect from myself.

Prior to the show we actually went to dinner at Carpe Diem, a favorite of mine right down from The Visulite on Elizabeth, which was amazing as always and a great end to my ‘I don’t care how bad it is for me, it’s delicious and I’m going to eat it’ week (except really the end was Saturday when I killed a cinnamon roll from Sunflour Baking Co. and pizza and wine at Wolfgang Puck with work friends).

Now I’m back in Charlottesville manning the ‘ship’ here;  back on track with my local food groups, and finally back on track with working out – and life.  Despite the chaos of the multi-city life, and the divide and conquer that our team is currently pushing through to get the doors open in Charleston mid-may, things are falling in to place pretty nicely and summer has just begun.  I guess Monday isn’t a bad place to start new.


Dog Meets Ocean: A Weekend at the Beach

After a long week of work, and several long months of craziness in general, it was finally time for a quick break.

fuel sweat grow: Myrtle Beach

Welcome to Myrtle Beach, friends.  After an early Saturday morning departure (and a far too long 5 hour drive) it was time to take a breath – and a long nap in the sand.

After the beach it was definitely time for dinner – but first, margaritas.

Fuel sweat grow: margaritas

We went to Twelve, a restaurant close to Garden City, and since they had a $3 margarita special, 3 out of the 4 of us had to give it a go.  It was totally worth it too, there was nothing discounted about it, but it definitely put the happy in happy hour.

For dinner I had the skirt steak with seasonal veggies, and then the garlic mashed potatoes came on the side.  Initially I had no intention of eating the potatoes, but it’s vacation, and they were delicious, so I indulged — but just a bit.

fuel sweat grow: steak at Twelve

Sunday morning came pretty quickly after 3 margaritas at dinner, and kicked off with Bug’s first beach adventure.

fuel sweat grow: bug beach run

So, turns out, she LOVES running on the beach, but she’s terrified of the waves, so there was a lot of zig-zagging around to dodge what she viewed as impending doom.  I did eventually get her into the water, but I had to really coax her, and slowly walk in first.  What can I say, she’s all about safety first.

She spent the rest of the day guarding the house from all other beach goers, and pretty much anyone who considered walking within 100 yards of her perch.


I spent about 6 hours and two solid naps on the beach getting some much needed Vitamin D (yes mom, I wore sunscreen) before heading back to the house to make dinner.

fuel sweat grow: veggie stir fry prep

Veggies chopped and ready to simmer.

fuel sweat grow veggie stir fry

Paired with chicken and steak for an awesome stir fry modification.

fuel sweat grow: stir fry meats

I was really in need of some good protein, and veggie nutrients, so this was a great Sunday dinner.

fuel sweat grow:  stir fry plate

Since my only real exercise of the day had been my wind sprints on the beach with Ms. Bug, after dinner I hit the beach for a long walk.

I’ve been getting back into walking lately since I don’t always want to push my body through a run (usually after a tough workout, but also during rest times), and this was perfect.  I absolutely LOVE beach walking, and dusk walks with the breeze from the water are without a doubt the absolute best.

My recent iTunes adds included the latest Delta Rae album, and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for some beach walking music or really honest lyrics.  Double recommend to some of my yogi friends, and I will probably cry immediately (tears of joy?) if you play them while I’m on my mat.  That’s pretty much a promise — the songs are that easy to connect to.

This morning included another beach walk, another dog meets ocean adventure, some sun, and then a run after the long afternoon ride home in the rain.  I’m signed up for Flywheel tomorrow morning before a long day of work, and have a full week of sweats and some awesome new Fight Gone MAD pics to share tomorrow.

I miss the beach already.