What should I try?

My brain keeps getting pulled in about a billion different directions this week!

First I discover an interesting challenge of doing 100 pushups through a six-week training regimen where you sculpt and awesome upper body along with achieving a pretty sweet fitness goal. I’d really like to do this in all honesty. Only 10 minutes 3 times a week isn’t bad.

Then I hear about the Wendie Plan. Since I weigh in general on Sunday or Monday, my weekly points plan would likely look something like this:

Sunday – 39
Monday – 36
Tuesday – 29
Wednesday – 37
Thursday – 31
Friday – 49 to 51
Saturday – 29

And now my mind is toying with the idea of participating in NaNoWriMo! With regards to this, my mind keeps wondering, “Which of my dreams could I use for a story this time?” Yeah…

From this, you’d think my brain/body is craving either try something new or set a new goal. I need to listen to my gut, but I don’t want to overwhelm myself and do too much. My brain already feels overwhelmed just by all of these bustling around vying for my attention. So what to do, what to do…

Can you tell that I haven’t gotten any work done today? Haha!

I challenge you to try something new this weekend! Hey, maybe you’d like to join me in the 100 pushup challenge? If so, let me know!

Happy Friday everyone! Have a great weekend!

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Enjoy it all… then track it!

So it’s been a crazy few days. Birthday was wonderful and relaxing with mani-pedis with my mom followed by a scrumptious birthday sushi dinner where I found a new favorite roll (Red Dragon… mmmmm!). And thank you all who sent me birthday wishes!

My birthday kind of extended into Friday when I got to see my man during my 3-hour layover in LA on my way to Sac Town. He’s so stinking sweet to me… But I have a feeling he wants to make me fat. Haha! Just kidding, but you may see why I said that in a moment. He picked me up, took me to breakfast and gave me a list of things for my birthday even though I was completely thrilled just to see him. He gave me a darling/funny card, two stunning and aromatic red roses, a bag of gummy bears (spaced out over two days) plus a huge slice of chocolate cake (which I couldn’t finish because the icing was too rich–but it was still delicious)…

Let me tell you, I was surely a sight trying to keep a grip on all of this along with my purse as I went through the airport security. Many people commented. Haha! I even found out later that a man I shared that next flight with saw me taking a picture of it–and he was a part of the wedding that I was on my way to as well! Kind of embarrassing but kind of funny too. Nice guy.

Then there were the wedding festivities… The night before, a big group of us went to this delightful Italian restaurant where the balsamic had me drooling over it the whole night. Seriously, it was like candy. I may have had a whole weeks’ worth of the daily oil requirement in just that evening. Delish! And then the food at the actual wedding was amazing too. The pork I had was perfectly cooked and moist–I could eat it every day if I could! And the wedding cake wasn’t bad either.

So yes, a lot of eating. However, I think I balanced it out well with activity. The bride and her bridesmaids wanted me to teach a pre-wedding Zumba session like I did at my step-brothers wedding over the summer. Imagine Zumba done in a humid hotel pool room. Talk about sweating buckets! On top of that, the band at the wedding was excellent so there was a lot of dancing to be done. I probably danced about 4 hours minimum that night… in heels even! So much fun!

Thing is, I never once tracked since Friday. My phone was being uber-glitchy so I didn’t want to put up with it (I think it knew it was about to be replaced with the new iPhone so it wanted to p!ss me off). But as soon as I got home, I tracked every single bit of the weekend. I went over my weeklies, but I still tracked it. I enjoyed every little bit of this weekend like I should and kept myself accountable. The scale was barely up when I weighed in yesterday so I think I hit a fairly good balance.

That’s really the key to all this though… Enjoyment, not deprivation–then track it! It’s all part of the plan! As long as you follow the plan, it’s not “cheating”. Everyone can make this work!

Hope you all had a lovely weekend! Much love!

The Fun Factor

What is most important to you when it comes to choosing a workout?

I just came across an interesting poll on SparkPeople (diet and fitness regimented tracking community website) regarding this very topic. The poll lists fun, convenience, effectiveness, location, calories burned, ability to be modified/adapted, level of ease/difficulty, and other as the options.

Me being me, I cannot stand a workout that I don’t have fun with so naturally I chose the first option. When the results popped up, I was intrigued by the numbers.

Effectiveness came in first with 27% of the votes, which is understandable. Convenience was the runner-up with 23%. Fun only garnered the bronze medal with 17%… and that got me thinking.

The top two voted options make sense, they really do. You want a workout that challenges your body and can trigger changes, and you also want a workout that isn’t completely out of your way to do. But here’s where my argument steps in…

When there is a workout I enjoy, I make a point to make it convenient for me since I don’t want to miss out. Not only that, but I work harder at it because when I’m having a good time, it’s hard to not go full out–and that helps make a workout more effective too! So in a way, it’s like the fun factor ups everything else in my mind. This is why Zumba Fitness and Pole Fitness are my favorite ways to stay fit. Fun, constantly challenging, and not too difficult to make convenient in my life. Adding a TV or book to the situation can be fun too, except sometimes that can distract from having the “hardcore” workout that I like.

What do you think? What’s most important to you? Does it make a difference in the way you both view and perform your workouts?

Will I have the energy?

On Wednesday, I thought I was feeling well enough to go to Zumba. I was so psyched to go and the instructor even let me lead the warm-up with a song I newly choreographed.

Post-warm up, it felt like my chest was on fire. I literally had to take a break because it hurt to breathe. After a one-song break, one of my favorites came on so I went back in. A couple songs later my chest wasn’t on fire anymore but that was likely because I wasn’t doing anything full out like I did for the warm-up. Because of the breathing issues and fear of over doing it, I left halfway through the class.

And now I’m terrified because I’m supposed to teach the Zumba class tomorrow.  The main teacher is out of town and the other sub is too, so the last hope is me… who happened to contract a cold this week.  Lovely, right?

One thing is for certain, I’m definitely not going to do the same warm-up I did on Wednesday; it’s far too intense. I’m scared of not being able to make it through the whole class. I’ve been making sure I get at last 8-9 hours of sleep a night to make sure I’m resting enough to kick this cold in the tush. But will it be enough?

If you think it takes energy to take a Zumba class, you need nearly double that to actually teach. If the teacher isn’t doing everything full out, the class will only do it half way. Those taking the class copy the teacher and absorb that energy and if that energy is lacking… let’s just say, it’s probably not as fun of a time and not as good of a workout as it should be. I need that energy but if I do manage to do that, I’m going to be completely trashed afterwards.

Doesn’t help that I’m not a flaky person and I can’t bring myself to cancel my plans with friends tonight (which has been planned for a month) even though tomorrow is going to be an insanely busy day and I’m nowhere near prepped to deal with it, only partly due to my cold. I still have major cleaning to do too…

So yeah… I’m kind of nervous for teaching Zumba tomorrow and then having my whole family plus friends over for my baptism and after-party tomorrow evening. It’s going to be exhausting, I have no doubt.

Please pardon my soap-box moment today. I’m stepping down now.

Have a good weekend everyone!

Do you have visual reminders?

What kind of of things motivate you? Is it internal thoughts, a motivational quote, blogs or perhaps a charm that reminds you to stay on track? I think some kind of physical and visual reminder is a great way to keep going and stay motivated.

In 2010, my mom made a “goal board”: a poster containing the things she wanted to achieve. Nearly everything on that poster came to be real, almost down to the exact color of her new washer and dryer. I always thought that was a cool idea–having a physical manifestation of your goals as a constant reminder of what you want.

For me, I have a pair of jeans that I bought right before I left for Italy last summer but haven’t had a chance to wear yet since Italy wasn’t as kind on my hips as it was to my legs. These jeans are hanging on my door to remind me that I want to be able to fit in them! This worked a couple years ago when I was trying to fit back into a size 6. Now I’m at an 8 so this is my way to remind me that I can do this again (hopefully for the last time).

What about you? Do you have a visual reminder to stay on track with your weight loss/maintenance goals?

Tis the season for coughs and sniffles…

Fa, la, la, la, la… *cough*, *cough*, *cough*, *cough*!

I knew something was up when I woke up Saturday morning to a swollen throat gland. That usually is an indicator that I have a cold or another virus up in my grill. And when I couldn’t control the snotty goodness running down my face yesterday, I knew a cold had settled in without my permission.

This morning I did not want to leave my bed. I’ve been thinking about my nice warm bed all day. My focus at work has been eeeeehhhhhhh. I will definitely be in bed early tonight. My congestion makes my head feel uber-weird, my throat is raw, and my nose is driving me crazy!

Tonight is supposed to be Zumba night though!  I know that exercising while you have a cold isn’t a bad idea, as long as you don’t have a fever. In fact, I read an article where it says that moderate exercise can up the amount of “fighting” blood cells in your body even though there is no scientific evidence that says moderate exercise can help you get rid of viruses faster.

The thing with exercise and sickness is that the more you live an active lifestyle, the less likely you are to fall sick. However, if you exercise too hard while your body is trying to recover, you can actually get sicker and it will take longer for your body to heal itself.

As much as I want to do Zumba, it’s more than just a moderate exercise. I really don’t want to push myself since my whole family is coming to town this weekend.

Doctors do say that rest, lots of fruits, veggies, and liquids help your body repair itself faster when it’s combating a cold… so I think I’d rather rest it off than risk any delay in that process by exercising.

What do you like to do to help recover when you get sick?