I love planning trips. Gone are the days when I buy a guidebook in advance of booking a flight. Nowadays I scour the internet to read travel blogs and websites for hotel recommendations, must-do activities and inside tips. To that end, I’ve found others’ itineraries and recommendations so helpful so I wanted to share a great long weekend Matt and I spent in Maine last summer in an easy-to-copy format.

Who should go on this trip: Active east coasters who want to go to a national park without flying west
When to go: Maine gets cold and windy, so this depends on your personal constitution. We went in July and I thought that was perfect
Is it expensive?: It doesn’t have to be. JetBlue offers relatively low fare flights from JFK to Portland. You could stay in a luxury hotel/B&B right in Bar Harbor or find something smaller further afield.

Here’s a 5 day/4 night plan for enjoying Acadia National Park.

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Matt and I spent three nights in Queenstown, New Zealand during our honeymoon. We loved every second of this restaurant-packed, lakefront little city.

Queenstown is adventure capital of the world. You can famously bungy jump at the first commercial bungy site (Matt did!), mountain bike down steep trails, go white water rafting and find countless other thrills.

But mostly, we wanted to hike.

We spent hours googling trails but in retrospect, the good stuff was obvious.  I’m sure you could find other day hikes in the area, but in my humble opinion (and the opinion of all the Queenstown locals we polled) these three experiences are must-dos for those spending just a few days near Lake Wakatipu.

Queenstown Hill

Queenstown Hill

Matt at the “basket of dreams” on Queenstown Hill

This hike takes about two hours (roundtrip). It starts right outside of the center of Queenstown, and you can absolutely walk there. (I don’t think there is parking closer to the trail head anyway). The hike is steep, but short and the trail is packed dirt and well marked. You’re rewarded with incredible views of Lake Wakatipu below.

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For the second time, I’m participating in Cycle for Survival. I wrote a pretty solid blog post last year (if I do say so myself). And now, I’m participating in the exact same event but I am going to write a whole new post because I think you deserve that, dear reader and potential donor.

If you know enough now that you’d like to stop reading and make a donation, please go ahead:


As you may know, Cycle for Survival is an indoor cycling event that raises funds to help cure rare cancers. Hopefully cancer has never impacted you or your family, but for those that cancer has touched, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) is an incredible resource, and often a literal lifesaver. 

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I’ll start with this: There is nothing to stop you from performing your best in a cotton t-shirt and a regular gym shorts. But what can I say, nearly nothing motivates me to show up for a class or head out for a run like a shiny new pair of leggings.

I love Bandier, Lululemon and Sweaty Betty. But it’s not always realistic (or necessary) to purchase a full workout wardrobe from an upmarket store.

Two things that I do think it’s CRITICAL to be picky about are socks and sports bras. In my case, going for a run in shitty socks leads to blisters 100% of the time. (Tip: I love the brands Feetures and Balega for running socks.) When it comes to sports bras, I am loyal to Lululemon and Sweaty Betty.  These bras cost well over forty smackaroos a pop, but when you’re jumping up and down, you’ll think it’s worth every penny.

cheap workout gear

If you know where to look, you can find gorgeous fitness gear without the hefty price tag. All of your favorite brands can be found for (relatively) cheap on the world wide web. Plus, there are some lower priced brands that make fashionable, high-quality duds. Grab your wallet (or use the credit card you’ve memorized) and start shopping:

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