Thursday, March 31, 2011

Figuring this all out


Now on to today's post. :) I had a pretty interesting workout day today.

This week I have started a new lifting routine. I had one that I loved and used for years, but thought maybe if I changed I'd see results a little quicker than I have in the past.

Bad idea. The workout just isn't my style. I think for some women it would be a great workout, but for me? Just not quite right. Thankfully I spent so much time doing my other workouts I was able to do one from memory.

So that brings me to today's post. What constitutes a good workout? One thing I can tell you is that a good workout changes from day to day.

Lifting -
One thing I know for sure is how important lifting is. So at least 4-5 days a week I lift. Lifting builds muscle and muscle burns fat. Ladies, don't worry about "bulking up" from lifting... trust me, it is NOT going to happen.

Now, for some people lifting is enough - they don't care about cardio-vascular health, but for me - cardio is an important part of a good workout. I love the feeling of being able to run a couple of miles and not feel like I am dying... Im not quite there yet, but I am looking forward to it! Now, what I find confusing about that is knowing how much to do and when to do it? Some days I have "off" days from lifting so I cross train by doing mostly cardio, and I also start with warm-up cardio and usually end with cool-down cardio. But I've heard doing too much cardio after lifting is no good. How much is too much? And on top of that - what type of cardio should I do? Should I just run on the treadmill? Should I do interval training?

Variety brings it all together!
There is just so much variety that can be incorporated into a good routine. And that is what I LOVE about working out - so many people say "I hate working out" but with so many ways to actually do it I find that hard to believe!

I am going to change a few things up in my workouts for now. I plan on attending classes at the Y (kickboxing, Zumba, aqua-aerobics, yoga, pilates... only a few examples of the many classes offered.) I pay for a membership and I'll be darned if I am going to waste that money! I figure doing a couple of classes a week in addition to my normal workouts will give me a fun way to get even more work in.

Once I get in better shape and am able to do more, I plan to do TRX bands, kettle bells and possibly some crossfit training. I have heard numerous times full-body workouts a couple of days a week will basically take you to the next level of fitness - so I plan to do that too.

What workouts have you found effective? I have heard a lot of P90X success stories. And JT and I actually did it for a while. I don't even know why we stopped actually? I've also heard good things about crossfit and am looking forward to trying it. A lot of people like exercise videos like Bob and Jillian and Hip Hop Abs and Tai Bo. Im sure the list could go on and on and on.

Some people SWORE by this guy!

He definitely had pep! haha.

Anyways, the whole point of today's blog is to say that you have to find the best exercise routine for YOU. And it may take trial and error, but there are SO many options that not "liking" it isn't an acceptable excuse. Our bodies feel better when they are fit. I feel AWESOME this week - it has only been 4 days straight and I already feel SO much better than I did when I was only going sporadically.

The other thing I wanted to mention today is the obvious - the new layout. What do you all think? I spent a couple of hours putting it together... can't figure out how to make the area where my followers and old comments and such are darker... I'll keep working on that. Overall though do you find it easier to read? Is it more inspirational or enjoyable?

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

More Snow

Yes that's right. There is more snow here. In fact, there is about 3+ inches already and it was all on the road...

But, after my initial frustration, disgust and anger, I decided that I should put my energy toward something more important and positive... people are dealing with far more serious things than snow every day (such as an earthquake that spawned a Tsunami and a nuclear power plant that is out of control.)

Changing my mindset about the snow taught me something: We deal with crap every day. And sometimes, its difficult to know how to deal with that crap. Right now I am again separated from my husband and baby bulldogges... after the Navy was over we were NEVER supposed to have to be separated again! It's hard and frustrating and all of the discomfort I feel in my situation can be dealt with in several ways. How have I decided to deal with it? By working out and focusing on eating right - by working on myself to be an even better person so that I can be a better wife and best friend! I am going to get into Yoga and mediation and I am going to do extensive research on nutrition and personal training programs and share it with all of you!

We can use all of our negative energy to do positive things. The energy is going to be there either way - good or bad and YOU and only YOU can decide how to use it.

"I have learned that the greater part of
our misery or unhappiness is
determined not by our circumstance
but by our disposition."
- Martha Washington

Deep - I know. :)

This week has gone great so far with eating and working out. Yesterday I had an appointment in Erie so I took that opportunity to go to Wegman's. Probably the best grocery store ever. Anyways, I got myself some organic, free-range chicken. I really feel like it is important to eat meat, but, I also feel very strongly that if I am going to eat meat, It has to be raised and killed humanely without antibiotics. Side not on this later.

Anyways, I got the chicken and a few other things. I came home and worked out, then watched Biggest Loser (love that show still!) I also played some video games with sweet JT and just enjoyed my day. <3 Today Abby and I visited Grandma and when I got home I went straight to the gym. Afterward I came home and made the chicken. I would just like to say it was SO delicious. SOOOO delicious. :) I also enjoyed a DELICIOUS glass of wine tonight! :) Very productive and energetic two days.

By the way, for my female friends, if you're struggling with a work-out routine here is a great resource -

Ok - back to my side note from earlier. Tonight in my biology class we were discussing digestion. My professor brought up all of the fad diets (that most of us talk about... some of us have done :) lol) and explained that one of the reasons it is so important to eat a balanced diet (proteins, starches and lipids (lipids are fats) is because our body is programmed to break our food down in such a way that a balanced diet is the best and most efficient way to operate. Our bodies break down foods in stages. Stage one - carbs (starch..) which aids in stage 2 - the breakdown of protein and then that leads into stage 3 - lipids (or fats.) Without one of those things our digestion is not working optimally and our bodies are no getting the appropriate amount of nutrients. Take some time to ponder that - it really makes sense to me.

Tomorrow is an upper body and cardio. I may also go to the Y and spend some time in the sauna as well - maybe even do some swimming!! :) I am also planning to go the the library to get some books on nutrition and supplements finally. Also, I may post some "before" pics on here so when I get to the "after" I will be super proud lol. Any thoughts on that?

Alright guys - today's post feels a little rambly! Thank you as always for your support and reading! Please feel free to leave some input and comments. Here is one more tidbit of information for those of you with weak ankles!!!

Monday, March 28, 2011

A better me.

It has been a very exciting, eye-opening, interesting, busy and productive couple of weeks. :)

JT and I have both been ready to get in shape for quite some time. In fact, we've talked about it for years... the problem comes in the fact that we talk and talk and talk and start making progress then just derail. We make goals and we break them. Something always comes up, something is always more important... But really, what is more important than health?

So that brings me to the last few weeks. JT is officially moved back to Texas. We made the long journey in our 26 foot Uhaul with a trailer and his jeep on the back. During that trip we had serious trouble with the Uhaul, and the poor dogs were cramped (Remly had to sleep on the floor or on me the whole time!) We were together though - and it was so wonderful to be with my BFF. <3

Once we got down there we unloaded it and enjoyed a beautiful week in Texas together. Unpacking, setting house back up and enjoying the new businesses that cropped up in Tyler while we were gone. (A Brookshires Fresh - similar to a whole foods but less expensive and a micro-brewery!!!)

Here is a link to the new BF - very cool!

We also stumbled upon some interesting and inspirational information over that time. JT signed up for a Tough Mudder event ( its basically a much more difficult version of the warrior dash (11-12 miles rather than 3 with way more difficult obstacles.) While checking out info about the Tough Mudder we stumbled upon an amazing... and I mean seriously amazing blog.

PLEASE check this out ... even just read the first one and you'll be hooked...

One of the very important things we found in this blog was the idea that you shouldn't talk about doing... you should do.

That is a pretty deep statement. Think about all of the things you "want" to do in life. Go hiking, see friends more often, help the environment, eat better, lose weight... and think about the things you actually end up doing. The list is probably not as long as you'd like. So, rather than setting goals and "hoping" to get them done, how about we all start making commitments. Pick out one thing you want to do and just do it. Don't talk about doing it, don't plan on doing it - JUST DO IT. (Nike has it right!)

The best part? There is so much more information that we've found. I feel so inspired. I am DOING it, rather than talking about it. Today I worked out twice - I went to a kick boxing class, a body 360 class and then I went to the gym (later) and lifted and ran a mile. :)I also ate well (and I didn't eat any meat today either.)

Thats another thing I came across... One of John's blogs (the guy who writes the living myself to death blog) posted a trailer for the documentary "Earthlings" and it is literally the most disturbing, upsetting and disgusting thing I have ever seen. Just the damn trailer. JT watched the actual documentary and it really disturbed him as well. So, I have made the decision from this day forward that I will not eat fast food meat, I will not eat any meat that is not farm raised, free range or organic. In fact, I will only eat that rarely. I am seriously going to try to be a vegetarian.

This was my menu for the day (Vegetarian friends let me know what you think... and please share some recipes and tips with me - i can't really cook much here at my mom's house so its got to be easy.)

ok... won't let me copy and paste :( ugh

Breakfast -
banana and half of a whey protein bar

snack 1-
other half of whey protein bar

1 cup of almond milk
1 granny smith apple
1 dannon plain greek yogurt
1 cup decaf coffee

snack 2-
another greek yogurt (used as sour cream in my sweet potato)
sweet potato (medium size)
thai kitchen mushroom soup
90 calorie fiber one bar

dinner -
2/3 cup black beans
1 whole cage free, free range organic egg
1 egg white
2/3 cup white shoepeg corn

8 oz of organic blueberry white tea.

1466 calories - 83 grams of protein. :)

Anyways - I need to save some stuff to write for tomorrow! Thanks for reading! Here is an AWESOME and inspirational video and song! Thank you JT (MAKE SURE YOU WATCH IT! AMAZING!)

ALright all - make some commitments!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wednesday Check - In

Good Evening All,

Just wanted to check in! I have decided I am going to try to write at least a couple times a week. :)

Things are going very well here. I got up super early this morning and hit the gym. It felt great and my calorie burn was SO high today! Proof that morning workouts increase your metabolism throughout the day.

After my workout JT and I went to Erie because he had a VA appointment. While we were out there we went to a store called Wegmans. BEST STORE EVER. Seriously. I don't even know how to describe it except to say that it literally had ANYTHING you could ever want. Organic wise too. We picked up some green beans, red potatoes and grass fed steaks to eat tomorrow. I can't wait! (JT is an AWESOME chef!) Oh and we picked up some Bearnaise butter to go with it!

I have also been doing some research about products, different kinds of foods, body chemisty, food addiction etc... As I get it all together I will def. share it here. I have a couple of articles to share today too.

Oh and on a different note, It is officially Lent. And, although I do not subscribe to a particular religion, I do like to sacrifice something for the lent season. This year I have decided to extend my no sugar pact with my MFD friends to Lent as well. SO, I will not be eating anything with added sugar (except one Shamrock shake) until Easter Sunday. Im hoping I can give up about 20 lbs. for lent too hehe.

Im hoping when we get back to Texas JT and I can find a local Co-op to join. (thanks for the suggestion Adam!) We do have a nice meat market by us, but I'll have to figure out if they have grass-fed beef/chicken etc... Im still really worried about the next couple of weeks here. Does anyone have any suggestions about how I can eat healthy while living at my parents house without taking up too much fridge room, not having to cook much but not eating a ton of processed crap?

First, here is a blog that has lots of great info on it and some of you might enjoy -

And here is an article - this one is especially good for you busy parents (or just any of you busy friends of mine!)

thanks for reading guys. :)

Monday, March 7, 2011

Monday Monday... So good to me

Good Evening!

Check in time.

I had a very productive weekend and Monday. Ive worked out three days in a row now and I am feeling pretty darn good. One of the things I have to work hard on is making my workouts less sporadic and so far that's happening.

I also did my weigh in this morning - 170! down two lbs. from last week! And with my workouts going so well that number will continue to fall.

One thing I wanted to mention is that if anyone needs me to give them workouts to do let me know. A few years ago JT found me an awesome 5 day workout on and it really works when you stay with it. The hardest things is just that, staying with it. :)

There is a lot going on over the next several weeks. For those of you who don't already know, JT and I are moving back to Texas. There a variety of reasons, mostly the weather, the fact that our house won't sell and finally the fact that JT is still waiting for his SUB license here in Ohio... as a certified and degreed educator, he is a bit frustrated about that to say the least, and honestly, Ohio just isn't what it used to be. Its just not home anymore. The hardest thing will be moving away from family again, but I really think its best for us and we can come up and visit more often (especially when we both have degrees and jobs! lol)

So, the rest of this week and half of next I will be hitting the gym very hard. But then next Wednesday we are getting the Uhaul and loading all of our crap back up and then Thursday we are heading back to Texas. It should take 2-3 days to get there and then we'll unload the uhaul and unpack everything. :) I fly back into Ohio the following Sunday. (I will be staying here while I finish school. I am just too close to switch school again... I only have 4 classes after this semester!) Hopefully Ill be able to get in a few good runs down there. I have to pack light enough to only have a carry-on so I figure ill take a pair of tennies and two pairs of sandals. (it is 75 there... :) : ): ) and of course some workout clothes. My summer clothes will already be there (they are packed in with our stuff.)

So that's the big news. I know it seems like we are changing our minds pretty quickly, but the window is such that we had to make a decision about what we were going to do. And I am happy about the decision - I miss our little house!

Im hoping to be down at least 5 more lbs. by the time we leave. I definitely think its doable.

Alright, I found a great article that I know a lot of you will like!

Thanks for reading. How is everyone else doing health and eating wise? Anyone find any great recipes lately? Here is one a few of you (particularly Melanie and Carolyn) might find interesting -

Thank you for reading! <3

Saturday, March 5, 2011

So embarrassed!

Check in time! :)

Well, Ive had a semi-productive week. I still need to get into a better workout schedule, I only made it 3 times this week. Although I will say all three workouts were AWESOME. Monday I did back and chest and ran, Wednesday I did a 5-K and today I I ran, did bis and tris and ran some more. I need to make it more often though so I can do legs, delts and shoulders each week.

Speaking of running today... I had a pretty embarrassing incident at the gym. In fact, it was a VERY embarrassing incident. I was running on a special treadmill (see picture on this blog) that is supposed to help relieve the impact on your knees and ankles when you run. As you can see, it has little rivets. Well, I was running pretty fast, changing the song on my ipad and I stubbed my toe and went down. I grabbed the side handles and was bouncing on my knees on the treadmill... it hurt. I realized I either had to move my knees to the sides (impossible) or let go... so I let go and I went flying... as did my pants, clean down. So, I have raspberries all over my legs and knees and the streaming video shows me flying off the treadmill and my pants falling down. :) SOOO Embarrassing. Thankfully I still had a GREAT workout today and I didn't get hurt bad, my knees are just a bit sore.

I have few articles to share. In honor of my current pact with my MFD girls (No sweets for the month of March) I found this article about which desserts are best when you decide you want a dessert. :) So, ladies, in April - feel free to have some! :) :)

Another article I found talks about how to increase and build speed into workouts. I know all of us struggle with our training - I think the hardest thing is knowing WHAT to do when you workout. You can't just run, you can't just lift but doing too much or too little of either is bad too. I like this article because it breaks up the long monotonous runs.

And today's final article is "Taming the Cookie Monster." It provides tips on curbing the urge to snack! :)

I also got my eyebrows waxed today and started tanning. I know tanning is horrible for me, but it really makes me feel better in the winters because my skin hurts so bad from winter excema (the lotion and sun exposure helps a lot) and I love how I feel afterward (vitamin D I am assuming.) I only go for like 5-7 minutes a couple of times a week, So, I am hoping it won't hurt me or give me cancer. Plus, I am only going to go for a month or two at most.

I think thats about it for today. I hope the articles were helpful and everyone got a kick out of my embarrassing story. A good example to show you that you should NEVER be embarrassed at the gym because we all have blunders and silly things happen. Thank God I am safe and I'll just have to be more careful next time! :)

Thanks for reading!