Magazine Tip Off

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Seriously… how do I accumulate so much STUFF?  I end up de-cluttering about twice a year or so, and it’s still not enough to keep the pile of crap entirely at bay (especially now that we have a kid).  I use three techniques to keep clutter to a minimum… at least for a few months! 


First of all:  The 50 Thing Toss.  I love this method of throwing stuff out (or donating it, of course) because it gives me a concrete goal.  I pick a number – 50 to 100 – and search the house for items to clear out, including dead pens, old shirts, or broken electronics.  My second trick is Ray and Jen’s The Ol Switcheroo, which involves turning your clothes hangers around backwards at the start of each season, and once you wear and wash an item, you put the hanger back on the rack the right way.  After a few months, you’ll be able to look at your closet and tell right away what you didn’t wear and should probably donate.  And my third tip is to just say NO to freebies.  It’s so easy to bring home extra koozies or shirts or pens from events – don’t even take them in the first place.  They’ll just end up creating clutter.  Easy said than done, of course!


My favorite mixed drink of the moment:


Fill glass with ice

Fill glass 3/4 of the way with Sprite

Add shot of Malibu Rum

Add a splash of cranberry juice

Garnish with a lime


Tada!  Drink and pretend you are on a beach!


I am really, really loving my Brooks Ghost 5s (here’s my complete review).  I can’t say enough great things about these shoes!


Here’s my secret to running healthy forever:  Run in the way that suits your current life the best.  Meaning – you can’t always train for a marathon.  And that’s okay! You don’t have to be doing a marathon… or a half marathon… or even a 10K!… to be a ‘runner.’  A runner is someone who runs because they love the act, not because they run a certain distance or speed.  If you really want to run forever, run in a way that fits in with the rest of your life.  I realize this more than ever now that I have Henry. 


My big goal for tri season is to get faster on the bike.  I recently asked DadHTP (an accomplished cyclist) if buying a new bike would make me faster… much to my disappointment, he said no.  Dammit.  In all seriousness, here’s my guide to buying a used bike.  This is probably a great time of year to check out bike deals on Craiglist!


Motivation!  My favorite topic!  I even dedicated a whole chapter of the Healthy Tipping Point book to motivation.  I can say a lot about motivation, but I’ll stick to revealing three motivation tricks that work for me.


#1: Make your goal VISIBLE!  Not just to you but to everyone who enters your house.  I always keep my training plan on the fridge.  It helps keep me on track to see it everyday, and it’s really motivating to know that friends or family members will probably take a glance at it, too.  You can make a training plan (or star chart) for any goal:  books to read, finances to sort out, dietary changes. #2: Identify obstacles ahead of time.  Everyone gets tripped up by challenges; determining the obstacles to success ahead of time (and thinking of how you’ll beat them) can make a big different. Write a list of potential obstacles and solutions, and keep the list next to your training plan. #3:  Don’t keep your goals a secret.  Tell EVERYONE.  Your partner, your friends, Facebook.  The more public you make your goal, the more accountable you’ll be. 


More and more I realize this:  You CAN’T have it ‘all.’  I think the myth of having it ‘all’ is really harmful to women.  It makes us feel like we should stretch ourselves very thin or that we’re failing if we can’t juggle everything without occasionally feeling overwhelmed. 


The bottom line is this: no matter what you do, something has got to give.  It’s more than okay not to do it all – or to put certain things on the backburner, especially when your kids are young.  It doesn’t mean you’re failing; it means your maintaining your sanity and allocating your resources wisely!


You know what I love more than sleeping like a baby?  When my baby sleeps like a metaphorical baby.  Adventures in Baby Sleep Training to the rescue!


When I worked in an office, my biggest career mistake was… not asking for a raise.  I thought they would just give it to me if I deserved it.  Guess what?  It’s  your manager’s job to get you for as cheap as possible.  What finally worked for me was putting together a list of my accomplishments (I was sure to quantify the value I brought to the company); before my next review, I e-mailed the PDF to my managers with my raise request.  Guess what?  I finally got my raise!  So my #1 piece of career advice is this:  if you don’t ask for it, you’ll never get it.


Still loving the Two Ingredient Face Scrub!  I do it a few times a week. So nice.




Not Maggie, at least.  Maybe  James?



  • KAS March 7, 2013, 11:34 am

    “My big goal for tri season is to get faster on the bike. I recently asked DadHTP (an accomplished cyclist) if buying a new bike would make me faster… much to my disappointment, he said no. Dammit.” = sounds like DadHTP knows a thing or two about avoiding clutter!

  • dotsie March 7, 2013, 11:39 am

    Very cool and creative post, love it!

    My dog is definitely my shrink <3

  • Sonia the Mexigarian March 7, 2013, 11:42 am

    bahahahaha. love the last picture with Maggie. that just made my morning 🙂

    And wow to all the little catch titles on the magazines. some of them left me arching my brow and saying “really?” (ala Ace Ventura)

  • Sonia the Mexigarian March 7, 2013, 11:43 am

    oh and I totally need to declutter my life. I swear if it wasn’t for my husband I’d be on hoarders with a dozen cats. 🙁

  • Carolina John March 7, 2013, 11:47 am

    Love the magazine snippits. That issue of runner’s world is generating quite a controversy online, apparently.

    Bike speed only comes through volume. For triathlons, it’s also best if you can run off of the bike for 10% of the distance as well. You want to get faster? start riding 200 miles per week. Then the 10% rule means you’ll also end up running 20 miles a week, which will help with you aerobic endurance.

    For my ironman training plan, I ride 5 days a week, and when it gets long in the build phase those rides will be anywhere from 90 minutes to 5 hours each. I try to average 2o mph and keep my heart rate reasonable (zone 2 or 3). So that means 4 of those rides are 30 miles each, with an 80 or 100 mile long ride on saturday to total 200 or 220 each week. for 12 weeks of a build phase. bring on the speed! I can’t do that kind of volume at 15 mph.

    • DadHTP March 7, 2013, 2:15 pm

      whoa – how much of the year do you ride 200 miles per week?

      • Dee March 8, 2013, 8:06 am

        DadHTP you should check out this woman’s blog. She’s an ironwoman who is about to turn pro, and a banker so she kind of gives you a good idea of how to get in your training, work a job, and win races.

    • Ebernst March 8, 2013, 11:00 am

      Thanks for the tip on running 10% of your bike volume. My bike volume is still relatively low (40-50mi right now..building up for HIM training), but I’m going to use this idea to incorporate into my training!

      Maybe one day I’ll get to 200mi per week…

  • Sarah @ Yogi in Action March 7, 2013, 11:47 am

    I love this post! Way to get so many different topics covered in one post.

    I definitely agree that we can’t do it all. And why do we want to? There’s a really disturbing article about Marissa Mayer, the CEO of Yahoo, and how she’s saying she only wants to work with people who will give up everything for the job:

    While I don’t agree with the idea of working a 100 hour work week, I think it really illustrates that if you want to be a CEO of a Fortune 500 company, then there will be things that you need to give up (like free time).

    • Caitlin March 7, 2013, 11:57 am

      Did you see how she banned everyone from working from home? And how she said that being a working mom is no big deal? Um… it’s probably not that hard when you’re a millionaire with the capability to hire a maid, a nanny, a chef, a personal trainer. Oh and she constructed a nursery right off her office at Yahoo. #outoftouch

      • Caitlin March 7, 2013, 11:58 am

        I actually think the nursery is cool, but obviously, having your baby right there when you work makes being a working mom in an office at little easier.

        • Sarah @ Yogi in Action March 7, 2013, 12:21 pm

          The part I don’t get about the article, and Marissa Mayer in general, is why have children at all if you believe you should give up everything for the job? If you work 100 hours a week, that’s 14 hours a day, everyday!

          There’s also a connected article on the side that advocates that you should get married young, have your children at 25 (at the latest) so when you’re 45 you can start your career and still have time to be successful. Clearly I have been living my life all wrong 😛

      • Emily March 7, 2013, 12:13 pm

        I totally agree! I wonder if she would allow every single working mom to build their own nursery right off their office/cube/desk. Probably not….

        She is so out of touch! The more she says things like this, the more I cringe.

        • Sarah W. March 7, 2013, 2:24 pm

          Before I present this information, I want to say I personally approve of telecommuting and was also taken aback by Meyer’s decision. But I did a little more research and this is what I’ve found:

          Yahoo! has clarified their opinions on telecommuting, “This isn’t a broad industry view on working from home — this is about what is right for Yahoo right now,” said the statement from a Yahoo spokesperson. (link: )

          Many former Yahoo! employees have said this was a good decision due to a large amount of employees abusing this privilege. According to a former Y! employee many telecommuting employees put in minimal hours of work for Y! and invest a lot of time of their work-day time to start-up ventures. (Link: )

          Finally, I apologize that I can’t find the article that I read yesterday, many Y! managers have said that they will still allow telecommuting even during the so-called ban for instances like sick children, or to be home for cable repairs, etc.

          To me this decision by CEO Marissa Meyer is data-driven* and what she felt was necessary for a struggling company. I don’t think this information was disseminated well at all, but after reading the things that I posted/mentioned I can understand the decision more.


      • KAS March 7, 2013, 1:55 pm

        The NYTimes had an article yesterday that shed some light on the change:

        Reading that helped me to see the other side a bit.

  • Emily March 7, 2013, 11:48 am

    Such a creative post! Loved it!!

    #1-I don’t think ANYONE should take advice from Kim Kardashian! 🙂 And I totally agree with you, women need to stop feeding into the idea that they can and should want to have it all. Everyone needs to do the best for themselves and their own life.

    #2-I ( my husband!!) collect so much clutter, I swear we’re constantly have yard sales/driving to donate stuff. I hear that as you move into a bigger house it gets worse….lord help me!

    #3-Thanks for the advice about asking for a raise. My review is next month and I was about to chicken out….Starting a list right now! 🙂

  • Emily March 7, 2013, 11:55 am

    The look on Maggie’s face in that picture is

    Also, I like the idea of posting my training plan/eating plan (I keep mine on the computer desktop, since we share a computer)…just last night I asked the bf if he wanted to split a leftover birthday cupcake for dessert and he was all, “Is that on the plan for today?”…Well crap 😉

  • laine March 7, 2013, 11:59 am

    I actually did get faster when I got a new bike, but that’s because the 10 speed I had been riding was 22 years old! It was the first big thing I ever bought with my own money (in high school) and I may have cried when I retired it. My average speed has gone up by about 5mph. And changing gears is so much easier when I don’t have to reach down for levers on the bottom tube.

  • Joan March 7, 2013, 12:10 pm

    Regarding having it all, I read something once that I think is very true: You can have it all, you just can’t have it all at the same time. The context of the article was that at different times in your life you have to focus on certain areas and naturally other areas have to take a backseat. I find this to be so true, I have spent the last 20 years taking care of my family and building a busines. Workouts were minimal and quick: 20 to 30 minutes a couple times a week and my weight was always a bit higher than optimal. Now that my daughter is off to college I have time to exercise for fun and have gotten into trail running, sometimes going out for hours at a time. Maintaining a healthy weight is not near the struggle that it used to be.

  • Emily@2:DESIGN:CENTS March 7, 2013, 12:11 pm

    I love the 50 thing toss idea! I may have to start doing that a couple times a month!

  • Kendra @ My Full-Thyme Life March 7, 2013, 12:44 pm

    Such a creative post and full of great information! Thanks!

    Love the last one with Maggie. Too funny!

  • Kristen L March 7, 2013, 12:59 pm

    What a fun and creative post! 🙂 It’s time for me to go through and de-clutter some things. Although a few months ago my husband and I finally got rid of a ton of stuff! But, time to do it again and get rid of more.

  • Katie @ Peace Love & Oats March 7, 2013, 12:59 pm

    Haha I loved this – inspiration from magazine articles and covers! Cute post, and great advice!

  • Karen @ Runner Girl Eats March 7, 2013, 1:37 pm

    This post was so fun for me to read. I really like the declutter ideas! I also agree that you can’t have it all but you can def have what is important to you with some hard work.

  • Addie March 7, 2013, 1:39 pm

    My mom always says (for both men and women,) “Sure, you can have it all!! You just can’t have it all at one time. And how you define ‘having it all’ will change year to year, and maybe even week to week!” 🙂

  • Sara @ fitcupcaker March 7, 2013, 1:45 pm

    I love the career advice, its so true these days!

  • Stellina @ My Yogurt March 7, 2013, 2:16 pm

    Love this post!!

  • DadHTP March 7, 2013, 2:18 pm

    You’re light enough so a pair of lightweight wheels will accelerate faster so you feel faster – but unless you’re climbing a lot, it’s not about the bike – to quote a lying, cheating, doper MF.

  • Becky March 7, 2013, 2:18 pm

    This is an awesome post! I love the magazine pictures! Made my day…oh Maggie! At least she has a sweet face!

  • Zulkey March 7, 2013, 3:00 pm

    This is a cool post–are these from magazines you have or were they on the stands?

  • Nicole March 7, 2013, 3:17 pm

    Just had to say that I LOVED this post. I read a ton of blogs, but yours is always one of my favorites.

  • Cat March 7, 2013, 3:47 pm

    R.E. ‘Having it all’ – It just depends what your definition of this is! It’s specific to every person and changes over time 🙂

  • Cat March 7, 2013, 3:57 pm

    Also, I read quite a balanced article about high profile women who have taken a stance on ‘having it all’ earlier this week:

  • Jelena March 7, 2013, 5:41 pm

    Last month while I was balancing the crazy eperiment , grocery lists, sports and meeting friends, and then got super sick, I read this sentence in the Happienes project: ” You can be anything you want to be, but you can’t be everything you want to be”. It made me think a lot about having it all

  • Sarah March 7, 2013, 7:02 pm

    That picture of Maggie made me laugh out loud! She’s too cute:)

  • Charity Dawn March 7, 2013, 7:54 pm

    Every time I see that pic of Maggie I have to laugh she just looks so darn loveable!

  • Emily March 7, 2013, 8:17 pm

    New to your blog and LOVE it! Great post! Question – is Maggie a dappled dachshund? I had one named Karma who looked similar (crazy eyes and all)? 🙂

    • Caitlin March 7, 2013, 9:25 pm

      She isn’t dappled – she’s piebald! 🙂 Thanks for reading. Dachshunds are the bestest.

  • BroccoliHut March 7, 2013, 9:11 pm

    What a fun post!
    I totally agree with you on what makes someone “a runner.” When I was in college, I would run 6-7 miles every day. Like clockwork. Then I graduated, got injured, got BUSY, and stopped running for quite a while. I felt like I was no longer a runner because I could only fit in a few miles per week. But now I realize that it’s not about reaching a mileage threshold. It’s about enjoying running for how it makes me feel.
    Anyway, now I’m off to de-clutter my closet 😉

  • Corrie @ Blurb Column March 7, 2013, 9:55 pm

    Great Stuff Caitlin! Maggie…too funny! Kim K. Horrible…never take advice from her! LOL! Agree with others…having it all depends on how you define all and on what day! And, most of all…I just love DadHTP! Great advice!

  • jennifer March 8, 2013, 9:05 am

    ahh maggie! cracks me up every time!

  • delia March 8, 2013, 10:31 am

    i like this post. do you subscribe to cosmo? i must admit that i do! just for fun. although it is a pretty messed up mag.

  • Terri R. March 8, 2013, 11:12 am

    This was a really fun and informative post! I love the format with the magazine “headlines”.

  • Jen in MN March 8, 2013, 3:38 pm

    1) that drink sounds AMAZING. Must recreate, ASAP. I <3 Malibu Rum (-;
    2) agree 1000% that having "a baby that sleeps like a metaphorical baby" is just about the best thing in the world, parenting-wise. I would be the crappiest parent on earth (only speaking for myself, not anyone else) if I got months or years on end of broken sleep, and too little of it. Nope, I'll take my sleep trained preschooler and 10 month old any day (-;

  • Luna665 March 8, 2013, 3:45 pm

    pineapple juice, malibu and anything resembling grenadine syrup… yum.why did you even say that malibu word.I haven’t had a drink in years and I loved malibu (btw, I don’t have/didn’t have problems with alcohol, just decided to not drink any more lol)

  • Allison March 10, 2013, 9:02 pm

    Thank you for your small paragraph on running healthy. I needed to hear that. Last year, I ran 2 marathons (the anniversary of my first marathon is coming up in a week). This weekend was my first time running in about a month and I was feeling a little down about how little I’ve been running lately. Starting my new job with longer hours means that I have not been able to run during the week like I have in the past. But you’re absolutely right. Right now I’m in a place where I’m not training for a marathon and that is okay, because now I appreciate more than ever the chance to get outside and just RUN.

    • Caitlin March 10, 2013, 9:10 pm

      🙂 HAVE FUN!

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