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Skylines & Sunshine: Bicoastal Besties Reunite at the Starting Line

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By HIHEELZbrooke · July 16, 2015

Posing with our bling after running 13.1 miles through the vineyards."I live my life through my friends."

My friend Haley said this over the phone the other day, explaining to me why sharing stories and experiences with friends is the only way she wants to live her life. Why travel to Hawaii alone if you can go with your BFF and discover you suck at snorkeling together? Why wallow in solitude over the text message you got from your crush when your bestie is sitting right there to help you nit pick his use of "Yes" vs. "Ya"?

Some may agree to disagree, but I am totally Team Haley on this one. I excitedly reminded her of the new life story we were in the process of penning together: training for our first half marathon bi-coastally (I'm based in New York City; she's out in California)—the Destination Races Santa Barbara Wine Country Half Marathon on May 9th.

Even more thrilling—at the starting line, we'll be reuniting for the first time since we met four years ago.

Haley and I met back in 2011, on one summer night in Boston. Funnily enough, neither of us were even living there at the time—I was in town from upstate New York visiting an ex-boyfriend because I was 24 and impractical, and she was hailing from the suburbs to see college friends and a new love interest (who also happened to be my said-ex-boyfriend's best friend. Of course.) Needless to say, Haley and I began as perfect strangers when we found ourselves barhopping together on Landsdowne Street with a grab bag of mutual friends and former/current flames; we both ordered Pinot Grigio, commiserated over our lion-like humidity hair, and quickly realized we were already long-lost-twins-kind-of-friends.

You know that super-exciting feeling when you meet an ah-mazing guy at a bar with whom you have everything in common with, and ohmigod where could this go?! Meeting Haley was better, because I knew she'd actually talk to me again. (Zing. Sorry, boys.) Our mutual interests included, but were not limited to: country music, creative writing, coffee-by-day, wine-by-night, running, reading, biting wit, and even February 16th birthdays one year apart.

Fast-forward to 2015: Since our first time bonding in Boston, Haley and I have kept in touch and involved in each other's lives mostly through social media, crazily enough. As someone who hates on Facebook far more often that not (seriously, people—no one cares what you had for lunch, nor do I want to see that 84th photo of your infant), I never thought the words, "thank God for social media," would come out of my mouth. But thanks to Facebook chat, witty Twitter exchanges, and our mutual affinity for artistic and adventurous Instagram photos, it's been easy for us to keep up with each other.

But social media is certainly no stand in for real life. Since 2011, together, Haley and I have been through five boyfriends, four years, three cities, two years in grad school…and one unanimous decision that it was finally time to reunite in a big way.

So that's why we decided that signing up to run 13.1 miles through a vineyard together, and training for it for three months together-but-apart, was the best idea we've ever had. Just "meeting up" wouldn't do our friendship justice. Training is all part of the shared experience.
Finish line celebrations.

Even for someone who enjoys running, prepping for a half marathon is no small feat. The training schedule Haley and I follow requires us to go running at least five days a week, and let me tell you—waking up at 8am before brunch plans on a Saturday to do a 10-mile training run sounds a lot cooler than it actually is. It's exhausting. But the main thing that helps get me up and out from under my duvet is this: Even though I'm pounding pavement in Central Park and Haley is kicking up sand at Shoreline Park, I'm not doing this alone. Sometimes we'll even exchange training run Snapchats of city skylines and beach sunshine as motivational reminders.

In a way, training up to this big event is the fun part because we're running for something bigger. A friendship. A reunion. A new and shared life experience.

Oh, and the wine tasting station at the finish line.

Celebs: Look For Less: Khloe Kardashian

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By HIHEELZbrooke · June 27, 2011

Happy 27th Birthday to Ms. Khloe Kardashian! If I could take a wild guess as to how this gal is celebrating tonight, it's definitely going to be all out and in style. We're talking the entire Kardashian clan in tow, plus copious amounts of Krug and Dom Perignon at one of LA's hottest night clubs. Real-life mini horses bedazzled with glitter a la Lisa Frank are not ruled out, either.

And since I'm probably not going to be invited to this soiree, instead, I'm going to honor Khloe's special day by talking about how much I love her beachy outfit. One of my favorite looks ever is pairing long sleeves with shorts—it's so subtly sexy. Ms. Khloe uped the ante even more and sported a pair of wedges with her cuffed daisy dukes. Her cream-colored crochet cover up is gorgeous—it doesn't show too much, but it's lightweight and semi-see-through, so you can still catch a peek at her adorable string bikini. Two points for understated sexiness! KK finished off by accessorizing with a big gold watch and of course, her gargantuan engagement ring. (Hopefully she has her floaties packed in that lemon yellow tote, because she actually might sink wearing that thing!)

Lovin' the birthday girl's summer look? You can head to the beach donning the budget-friendly but just as cute version of Khloe's outfit—check out my finds above. :)

Read: Five-Minute Health Fixes

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By HIHEELZbrooke · June 26, 2011

In the time it takes to microwave a bag of popcorn or wait for the commercial break during the Law & Order: SVU marathon to end, you could have just bettered your health. (Not to make you feel like a guilty blob or anything...) But in truth, if you have five minutes, that's all it takes to do your body good. As your penance, check out my article for some super-fast and super-easy ways to revamp your lifestyle!

How much time do you spend taking care of your health each day? Sometimes it seems as though we don’t have even a few minutes to do that. 

But you can do yourself a lot of good by incorporating these 10 quick health fixes into your daily routine:


Head to ThirdAge.com to read up on all 10 of my five-minute health fixes!

Loves It: Audrina Patridge's Turquoise Bangles

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By HIHEELZbrooke · June 23, 2011

No matter what the latest trend of the season may be, turquoise will always be the color of summer. Am I right, or am I right?

I love, love, love statement jewelry, which is just one reason I'm totes digging Audrina Patridge's turquoise bangles. They're simple, but bold and bright at the same time. I also applaud Audrina for using the bracelets' versatility to her advantage and taking them from day to night. (Think: lighter packing on summer vaycay!) When you start your day on the sand or by the pool, bangles make for the perfect accessory to your bikini. Not only are they stylish without being "too much", but they move around on your arm so you won't get a bracelet tan! Audrina's turquoise bracelets really punched up the vibrant colors in her suit.

Once the sun set, the former star of 'The Hills' switched gears and tossed on a grey jersey dress for the evening's festivities. To add a pop of color, she accessorized with the same chunky bracelets.

Love Audrina's turquoise bangles? I found a few bracelets similar to hers that are perfect for mixing and matching!

Running in HIHEELZ: Let's Go Miss New York USA!

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By HIHEELZbrooke · June 19, 2011

As a Miss New York USA alum, I just wanted to wish this year's Miss New York USA, Amber Collins, GOOD LUCK at the Miss USA pageant tonight! I would just love to see our gorgeous Empire State gal take home the crown and begin the journey towards becoming Miss Universe!

Go New York, Go New York GO!

Miss New York USA 2011 pageant

The crowning of Miss New York USA 2011 last November.

Miss New York USA 2011 pageant

That's me. :)


Tune in to watch the Miss USA pageant TONIGHT on NBC at 9 p.m. EST!



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June 2011