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Back to Basics

by Alaina on June 24, 2015 · 0 comments

In the middle of July, my hosted website will expire. I have decided not to renew my “Jogging Concierge” domain name and will instead resort back to my WordPress platform. I will still be the Jogging Concierge, but to get to my site, it will be the old joggingconcierge.wordpress.com. I figured that since I don’t make any income from the site, there’s no reason to continue to pay for a domain.

I’m going to work on transferring over my pages and information, and by July 10th (ish) I will be found at WordPress.

See you all soon! :-)

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What a gorgeous day in Massachusetts to go for a run! The last few days have been cold and rainy, so I was so happy when I woke up this morning and the sun was shining. The temps were also in the high 40’s, low 50’s which is perfect for running. Today my training was for 3 miles. I mapped out my usual route, clicked on my Garmin and got my music queued up.

I recently programmed a specific 3 mile playlist that would play for 33 minutes so that I wouldn’t have to click through a larger playlist to listen to my favorite songs. These is my current list:

Natalie | Bruno Mars
Uptown Funk | Mark Ronson (featuring Bruno Mars)
Troublemaker | Olly Murs (featuring Flo Rida)
Happy | Pharrell
Save the Last Dance for Me | Michael Buble
That’s the Way I Like It | Backstreet Boys
My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark | Fall Out Boy
Maps | Maroon 5
Rude | MAGIC!

A bit eclectic but it sure gets me moving. :-)

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And speaking of getting music to help you move, here are the top 10 workout songs for the month of June! Happy Running! 

Top 10 Workout Songs for June 2015 – Familiarity and freshness are key ingredients in a workout playlist. While songs from the former category provide reliable inspiration, those in the latter bring the dynamism. Thankfully, June’s top workout tracks feature a healthy balance of both. Starting on the familiar side of things, you’ll find chart returns from perennial favorites Ricky Martin and Britney Spears. On the fresh tip, you’ll find breakout hits from newer acts like Shawn Mendes and Rachel Platten. Lastly, in the best of both worlds department, you’ll find new remixes of recent hits from Sia and Carly Rae Jepsen.

If you’re current playlist sounds a little dated, there are plenty of single tracks here that will liven it up. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a more ambitious change, this month’s top 10 tracks would make for a balanced and invigorating playlist just as they are. Like a good run, it doesn’t matter which route you choose—so long as you pick one and get going.

Here’s the full list, according to votes placed at Run Hundred–the web’s most popular workout music blog.

Sia – Elastic Heart (Kid Arkade Extended Mix) – 128 BPM
DJ Snake & AlunaGeorge – You Know You Want It – 99 BPM
Britney Spears & Iggy Azalea – Pretty Girls – 104 BPM
Shawn Mendes – Something Big – 113 BPM
Martin Garrix & Usher – Don’t Look Down – 129 BPM
A-Trak & Andrew Wyatt – Push – 126 BPM
Carly Rae Jepsen – I Really Like You (Blasterjaxx Remix) – 129 BPM
Rachel Platten – Fight Song – 89 BPM
Steve Aoki, Chris Lake, Tujamo & Kid Ink – Delirious (Boneless) – 128 BPM
Ricky Martin & Pitbull – Mr. Put It Down – 129 BPM

To find more workout songs, folks can check out the free database at RunHundred.com. Visitors can browse the song selections there by genre, tempo, and era—to find the music that best fits with their particular workout routine.

As always, I have not been compensated for this release; RunHundred.com is always free to use. 

What has been on your playlist lately? Anyone else celebrate National Running Day?

And make sure to enter my giveaway to win a $25 gift card for Earl of Sandwich! I’ll pick a winner on June 8th. :-)

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Recent Dining & A Giveaway

by Alaina on June 2, 2015 · 6 comments

Itadaki – Newbury Street

About a month ago, I had the pleasure of joining other area concierge for dinner at Itadaki, a Japanese Izakaya restaurant on Newbury Street. It’s been open for a few years, but this was my first time trying it out. Over the past year or so I’ve been more adventurous when it comes to trying sushi, and I’m happy to report that all of the food we tried was delicious. The only one that I couldn’t finish entirely was the pork ramen dish, and that could have been due to the slightly fishy taste of the broth. It’s my own personal preference so I’m sure those that love traditional ramen, will enjoy this as well.

The first photo is of the salmon sushi pizza (fried rice cake topped with spicy mayo, eel sauce, tobiko, scallion, and sesame). I couldn’t believe how incredible flavorful and tender the salmon meat was. I’ve never been a salmon fan but this was delicious.

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In addition to the ramen, I also order the California rolls which was also delicious. For the table, they presented to us a “bridge” and “boat” of sushi. They were varying flavors and heat levels of sushi and unfortunately I cannot remember all of those that we were given. You can find the menu here. I don’t think you can go wrong with anything that you order.

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As with all concierge dinners, this was complimentary, however all opinions are my own.

Itadaki is located at 269 Newbury Street in the Back Bay.

Click to add a blog post for Itadaki Boston on Zomato 

Toro – South End

Another lovely dinner with my lovely friend, Bianca. I never venture too often to the South End for dinner, but after this wonderful evening out, I’ll have to make it a point to go down there more often. Since Toro doesn’t take reservations, and even on a Monday its wildly popular, I was a bit nervous of having to wait long for a table. Thankfully it was only about 30 minutes before we were able to get in. The tables are right on top of each so you have to be OK with sitting almost elbow to elbow. Thankfully there was a fun group next to us that we chatted with for a bit.

But on to the real part of this post: the food. I started with the tinto de verano (red wine & lemon soda) to drink and it was bubbly and refreshing. For dinner we shared a bunch of plates (really the best part about tapas dining!).

From left to right: Hamachi Crudo (Yellowfin Hamachi with white soy, spicy cucumbers, citrus and avocado) | Goat cheese with tomato honey and pistachios | Corazon (Grilled Archer Angus beef heart with romesco) | Patatas Bravas (Fried potatoes with alioli and spicy tomato sauce) | Gambas al Ajillo (Griddled garlic shrimp with cascabel chilies)

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Everything was absolutely delicious. I thoroughly enjoyed every single dish, and I’m so glad I stepped out of my comfort zone. When Bianca suggested the Corazon I was admittedly a bit nervous, but it ended up tasting amazing. It tasted like a rich pastrami. My favorite had to have been the most simple dish, the potatoes. If I wasn’t so full from everything else I could have easily finished the whole dish.

Overall a wonderful dinner and restaurant that I will certainly visit again.

Toro is located at 1704 Washington Street in the South End.

Click to add a blog post for Toro on Zomato 

Earl of Sandwich – Boston Common

While working my last job, I had the responsibility of finding a place to order lunch from for a meeting we had every Tuesday. Eventually I stumbled upon Earl of Sandwich and it became the top choice in our rotation. Since leaving the job I haven’t had the chance to indulge in their sandwiches, but just a few months ago, at the GBCA trade show, they were passing out gift cards for everyone to try it out. And coincidentally, within that same week, an executive from EofS reached out to me to see if I wanted to try out their sandwiches as well! Since I already had the gift card, I inquired if I could get another from them to offer as a giveaway. They said yes and now you can win a $25 gift card to try them out! (Details below.)

Last Friday, on a gorgeous afternoon, I stopped by their location in Boston Common. You can find all of their locations here. I ordered the Full Montagu with no tomatoes, on wheat, and only waited about 5 or so minutes before it was ready. It was filled with roast beef, turkey, swiss & cheddar cheese, lettuce and mustard, and it was lightly toasted. Although the sandwiches are on the smaller size, the amount was actually perfect for me and the bread to filling ratio was perfect.

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In addition to sandwiches, they also offer salads, wraps, soups, chips and desserts. They run about $6 to $8 which is very reasonable for the quality that you receive.

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And now you can have a chance to try out their delicious sandwiches by entering the giveaway to receive a $25 gift card! Just let me know in the comments what your favorite sandwich is. And make sure to follow Earl of Sandwich on Twitter (@earlofsandwich) or Instagram (@earlofsandwichusa) for any new products or latest information!

Open to all US residents. I’ll pick a random winner on Monday, June 8th. Earl of Sandwich kindly provided a gift card to giveaway, but I have not been additionally compensated.

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