Why I need to write these things down!

Last night, I was feeling particularly lazy. I watched about 8 episodes of Grey’s Anatomy then tore out Timeline since I was in the mood to watch it. It wasn’t long before I literally kicked myself in the booty to get moving in some way since I don’t have Zumba to fall back on this week.

What I tracked as circuit training incorporated a lot that I wish I had written down. Reason being: My lower abs, my booty and my shoulders are all sore from it. I maybe worked out for 25 minutes in the middle of Timeline. No more than 30… no less than 25.

Here’s what I can remember:

  • 3 rounds of squats, one with 5 lb hand weighted press ups
  • 25 modified push-ups, then 2 sets of twenty
  • Lots of bicycle crunches (circa 50 reps)
  • 25 hip raises (laying down–targets lower abs)
  • 20 sit ups
  • Donkey kick variations, 10 on each side (if that’s the name of them… all I know is that they work my backside and I LOVE it)
  • 60-second planks in front and on both sides
  • 2 sets of 20 chest flies with the 5 pounders

And that’s all I can remember when I swear I did more! Haha… that already seems like a lot doesn’t it? This definitely wasn’t the order though. At first I was switching between squats, pushups and ab work. After that, I kind of just did whatever I felt like doing. My heart was throbbing through much of it and I was sweating about 7 minutes in so I’m calling it a good workout. And Timeline filled my craving to watch it nicely.

With the pain today? Most definitely a good workout. I may have to call this a mash-up strength training circuit that I’m going to have to do again (but likely changing things up to whatever I feel like doing).

What do you like to do to vary up your workouts?

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Who says there’s no time?

I’m probably not the only one here who has been inspired by the talented Jennifer Hudson. She decided she wanted to be healthy, to be an example for her son, to feel powerful. She did it… and she happens to look fantastic on top of it all.

There is a pretty cool article/slideshow on Mrs. Hudson on Self.com. In one of the slides, Hudson says:

“On days when I’m short on time, I do this workout called trilogy, which is cardio and strength combined: I do 25 squats, 25 push-ups and 25 ab moves, then rest a minute. Then I do them in reverse and rest another minute. Fifteen minutes and I’m done! And I create moments of exercise. When I lived on the 26th floor, I’d walk up the stairs instead of taking the elevator.”

I love that she totally advocates and makes squeezing in activity look so simple–because it really is! I decided to put the bold part to the test since my strength training has been lacking since Pole Fitness is so far out of the way from my new residence.

And DANG! She says it like it’s easy. NOPE! It may have taken me only about 10-12 minutes to do the cycle, but boy did I feel it. For my ab moves, I chose gymnastic sit ups* for the first set and lifted heel presses** for the second so I got a rounded core workout. My arms were dreading the second set of push ups and my abs felt dang good after (I’m a nut for core work).

Bonus? It got me 2 AP’s. For only ten minutes! Awesome right?

I challenge you to try it! The time may range from my 10 to Jen’s 15 so just be patient and stick through it. Your body with thank you. Just think of how strong you will be if you squeeze this in every other day! Remember to track it as “circuit training” if you do it like she suggests, with minimal rest between moves. I highly recommend stretching and doing windmills with your arms after because you will feel it.

1) See if you can get through the whole thing (trust me, I struggled… I had to pause during the pushups for a mini-sec a couple times).
2) See how your muscles  (and your heart rate!) feel during and after.
3) Make sure to stretch after.

An extra challenge: do it right when you wake up as a nice little boost for the day. Quick AP’s right off the bat!

With a mini-workout like this, it makes me think that there really are no excuses to not “find time” to exercise.

If you do end up trying out this circuit, let me know what you think!

Remember… no excuses. ;)

*Gymnastic sit ups: Lay flat on your back, arms stretched above your head. Lift one leg as you lift both arms to meet/stretch past it. Return to flat position, and do on the other side. Repeat.

**Lifted heel raises: Lay on your back with your legs up in the air, perpendicular to the ground. Holding in your abs, slightly raise your tush and gently press your heels upward and away from your body. Return to original position. Repeat.

Sharing the scale love…

My friend Maryann posted a great blog on “Loving the Scale” yesterday and I think it is worth sharing!

… it occurred to me this morning that there are an awful lot of people out there sweating their weekly weigh-in (or not weighing in at all). I see lots of posts like… “I weigh in tomorrow morning. I don’t think it’s going to be good.” or…. “I’m not sure how my weigh-in will go tomorrow.” But…. why?

Click to read more on her blog! She further gives you ways to think about why you shouldn’t fear the scale so much, but rather embrace it. You should subscribe to her–she’s an awesome no-nonsense Lifetimer at Goal with motivation and truth.

Happy Thursday!

You Need to Want It

I won’t lie… these past couple months (aside from the week leading up to BFF’s wedding) have not been good. I’m nearly ten pounds up from my supposed “happy” weight. My pants are a little snug now that I think about it. :(

Mostly I’ve eaten what I wanted and however much I wanted most of the time, tracked sporadically, but generally made good choices when not faced with treats. Or going out to eat adventures which have happened a lot more than I’d like to admit. With graduation, the stress of work, and all that jazz, it’s been crazy and that really transferred through in my dietary choices. Activity is the only thing that has been relatively constant and for that I’m grateful. I have news about a new fitness opportunity that I’ll fill you in on a little later.

Now I’ve settled into two part-time jobs, a news broadcasting internship and an admin assistant position. Let’s just say it was an absolute circus for most of May trying to get everything figured out and a trip to Vegas in the middle of it didn’t help.

It has been almost a constant battle since… Oh, snap! I can’t even pin it to a date/month/anything, so what does that tell you? It’s been a while. I’d tell myself that I want to make the changes back to my healthy habits but then I wouldn’t follow through. Apparently I didn’t want it badly enough because my efforts were less than lackluster. I’d start a day off great and then slip and slide until I went to bed. Or I’d make some really great choices but then I’d immediately follow it by a treat because I’d “worked” hard enough for it.

But I’ve had enough! This morning, I stood in front of my mirror for a good two minutes talking to myself.

No more excuses! You need to do this! You care enough about yourself and your body to know that your behavior has been completely unacceptable and inexcusable. You want to be healthy. You are strong and fit but the eating habits need a huge makeover. Though the habits have been there before, we all need to be reacquainted to be best friends again. Now is the only time to take these steps. Later doesn’t exist. Only now. And you want this now and forever! Plus, if you’re paying to use the online tools, why waste the money to not use them? You know you want this, just do it!”

So here I go… weighed and measured myself this morning. Wasn’t pretty but my new determination will help them get back to the “happy” zone. Tracking all the things (using Allie Brosh as inspiration for that)! And hopefully being able to provide support for you all here and to get it in return. I miss you guys so much, it’s not even fun.

I will no longer allow busy-ness to be an excuse to be lazy with my health.

Extra Points for Me!

When I focus on mainly getting in fruits and veggies, it astounds me of how many P+’s that I don’t eat. Reminder: I’m going to Fort Lauderdale for my BFF’s wedding this weekend and I’m looking smoking hot in that dress and on the beach. I want my pole-fitness-carved muscles to be popping! Which means cardio, fruits and veggies, minimal starches/grains/carbs (and if so, whole grains only and limited portions), lots of water, green tea, and some good protein.

Let me fill you in on what today has looked like food wise:

Breakfast
2 Gummy Vitamins
Apple
Yoplait Light Strawberry Yogurt

Morning Snacks
Banana
1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 cup carrots
1 cup green tea

Lunch
3-4 cups romaine lettuce
1 small cucumber
2 oz sliced turkey
10 sprays of Wish Bone Balsamic Vinaigrette

Afternoon Snacks
1/2 cup carrots
1 cup green tea
3 whole-grain pita crackers
1 T of peanut butter

Dinner
1 cup cooked asparagus topped with 2 tsp olive oil
1 slice whole wheat bread
1.5 T of peanut butter
1 tsp of honey (me says natural sugars are ok! plus it satisfies my sweet tooth)
8 oz 1% milk
Fish oil/Vitamin C/Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc vitamins

Total P+ Used= 21
Total P+ Leftover= 8
(Total APs earned= 8)

Hmm… so let’s see here. I hit all of my GHG’s and I have points to spare. I ran into this yesterday as well when I only ended up using 22 P+ and feeling totally satisfied.

How can WW allow this to happen? I know their new program is meant to nudge you to make smarter choices, but are we really supposed to think we have to eat all those points in a day even if we are satisfied from making said better choices? 8 points leftover? And I’m not even considering eating another bite tonight. It blows my mind. My stomach actually almost feels extended from dinner! I think I read somewhere it’s not required like it used to be, but still… it almost makes me feel like I should be eating more even though, I’m totally satisfied.

At the beginning again…

That’s it. I’ve cleared my weight loss history on the WeightWatchers website (after printing my previous one of course) and I’m starting fresh! My official weigh in day isn’t until Saturday but I needed the start now…

Now it’s time to go back to basics! Focus on tracking, GHG’s and my daily P+ target, activity whenever I can, portion control… all that good stuff. =)

Doing all of this will help get the stupid number on the scale back to where it is supposed to be. Last week was spring break and I’m feeling ready to knuckle down. My schedule is slowing down so hopefully there won’t be any issues with stress eating or anything like that. Thank goodness!

So I’m back to the beginning and ready to go! Who’s with me? :)

I guess I’m an athlete for Halloween!

I’m looking back to September of ’09 right now where I bought my first scale. It measures weight as well as fat and water percentages in the body. The first time I recorded my weight, fat and water with my scale, I was 161 lbs with 32% body fat and 46% water. It was right after my summer in England and Ireland where I gained back about 10 pounds I had lost because of the nummy drinks and amazingly fresh food. But I digress… *daydreams about London*

ANYWAY! This morning, thinking it would be cool to check in on my fat percentage, I stepped on my scale for the first time in nearly two weeks (I know, I know… I’ll explain later). Completely different numbers blinked up at me.

Weight: 156.8 lbs
Water: 58%
Fat: 15%

Say what? That big of a drop in body fat in a little over a year? I’m wondering if the scale is completely accurate. I’m going to step on again tomorrow to see if its the same. Looking at a chart with fat percentages, 15 percent falls under the category of athlete (check out that page… it’s pretty fascinating. This is another good one.). I’m an athlete now?! Well… this year has been my most active in my entire life so maybe it’s right!

As for the weight… well, the weight of muscle is where WW fails, unfortunately. Seriously, a pound of fat is about the size of a fist, but a pound of muscle is about the size of your thumb. So the more muscle you have, the more fat you will burn and the trimmer you will get… but the muscle weighs more than fat per square inch so it can be tricky when trying to “lose weight”. Yep, WW really fails there. No offense, but it’s true. Haha!

And I have gained quite a bit of muscle over the past couple months because of pole fitness. So right now, I’m not so concerned about the number on the scale so much as how my body feels and how I feel/look in my clothes. The inches I have lost are a lot of a better gauge than the scale lately. In fact, I’ve lost an additional half inch on both of my thighs as of this morning! (Woohoo!). That’s why I haven’t been getting on the scale because it’s not a good gauge of how my body feels and looks. Besides, I’m still Lifetime and relatively close to my WW goal weight so I have no qualms about it. I feel fantastic, so I’ll leave it at that.

It’s strange to think that I have the blood pressure and fat percentage of an athlete especially since I’ve never seen myself like that before this year… Now I love being active! It’s so fun and I love the rush that comes with it. Plus I do activities that engage muscles and leave me sore, sweaty, and with better definition in my body than ever before. And it keeps me sane through school and work. Who couldn’t love something that is so good for you in so many ways? :)

Trust me, I didn’t always feel this way… I remember when I wasn’t at school or work (sitting), I’d be on my bed, recording songs, reading, watching TV without much thought to being active. In fact, the idea of getting on the elliptical (now one of my favorites!) was a hindrance to my lazy enjoyment because work or school was so draining. Now it’s something I enjoy and actually gives me a boost to help get through my work! it took me little by little over the past two years to achieve this interest in fitness. Health is more than just eating right, you know.

Just a reminder… don’t always look at the number of pounds you weigh. Look at inches, fat percentages, waist to hip ratios, how you feel, and things like that. They can really bring the fact that you’re doing your body good down to earth for you. It makes it more real. Just keep working at it! Every little bit helps!

Have a great Halloween! Good luck with the treats! ;)

NSV’s Save the Week! (L4G W4 Results)

Here are the measurements from last week compared to this week:
Height- 5’9″
Weight- 155 lbs –> 155.6 lbs
Arms- 11 in –> 11 in
Hips- 41.25 in –> 41.5 in
Bust- 36 in –> 36 in
Waist- 26.5 in –> 27 in
Thighs- 22 in –> 22 in

So I’m up in a couple of areas this week, but I’m okay with that while silently hoping the increase in my hips and waist is from muscle… haha! But I know what I did wrong (and I did it for about three days). I’m glad I decided to change my goal weight to 154 to account for at least one pound of muscle that I know that I’ve gained from doing Pole Fitness. I think that is a good leeway to give myself for now. Anyway, if I hadn’t been as active I know it could have been a lot worse. But there are so many good things that happened this week that I don’t really care about these stupid numbers right now!

Despite blowing through my weeklies in Wyoming then coming home to one of those party bags of Pretzel M&M’s (Have I mentioned my addiction to those before?) which I helped my brother polish off… I think some really great things happened this week.

Numero Uno- I ran a full mile. Nix that, I ran over a mile! I still have a high from that! I wanted to run last night but deadlines mixed with a tension headache didn’t make it for a good time to do that. Someone mentioned running can be addictive and I’m already feeling that. =)

Numero Due– We went out for sushi last night, and I found out that it is completely plan friendly. One cup of miso soup, one salad with very little ginger dressing, some edamame, and 7 pieces of Playboy (4- my fave!), Mars (2), and Soft-shell crab rolls (1) and I was looking at an 8.5 point filling and scrumptious dinner. And to think I used to completely hate every kind of seafood… it’s nice to develop my palate!

Numero Tre- I had 29 AP’s despite 2 days being completely inactive, and one day without a legitimate workout (walking around campus a bit though). I may have eaten most of them, but that’s ok!

Numero Quattro- EVERYTHING was tracked!

Numero Cinque-
I GOT MY NEW WW Booklet! Haha… about time.

The numbers don’t matter right now because of this list. I feel like I had a good week despite some weak points. And now I have a whole new set of points to work with for this week! That’s another great thing to be happy about! =)

It’s my birthday week starting today. Tonight, I’m taking a group of friends to a lounge/bar. I’ll maybe have a drink or two but no more than that. I have a date and I don’t want to be out of control because I really like this guy and I don’t want to do anything stupid. Hehe…

Is it weird that I actually want to do well this week despite it being my birthday? Like I want to track everything even on my birthday and I’m telling people that I don’t want a cake. Or that I’m planning on attending a meeting on my birthday on Wednesday morning?

Well, I hope you all have a lovely times ten weekend! Isn’t it so crazy that we are into the second week of October already?!

Believe. Dream. Live.

When I was younger, I was not very active at all. I was the bookworm who would sit in the corner at recess, reading and writing. Those physical tests that were subjected to us in elementary through high school were something I dreaded. My attitude towards it changed gradually as I started to dance when I was 12. But I still hated those kinds of tests–I always did horribly.

The one thing I never thought I would do: run a whole mile. I remember being the very last person besides the kid who had awful asthma hitting the finish line. In high school it was a little better, but it’s still… not very good.

Heather (madtownmotzie) ran over one mile last week and she blogged about it. That inspired/challenged me to try. I’ve never been a runner but I’m active in other ways. In a way, I haven’t tried to run for an extended amount of time probably since high school. So, about four years?

And tonight I ran more than a mile, just like Heather! I did a five minute walking warm-up then ran a mile in just over ten minutes! I continued to run for about 3 more minutes, before walking for five before running a little faster for a couple of minutes before my cool down. Not my normal hour-long work out but I was sweating like a pig in after 25 minutes. Sweat works for me!

Doing this tonight reminded me of something I saw last weekend…

At my best friends new home in Wyoming, she has this decoration on her wall that I immediately fell in love with. This is what it said:

Believe.

Dream.

Live.

I really feel that it can apply to a journey like WeightWatchers. Believing that we can make a difference in our own lives and the way we choose to be healthier. We dream of reaching that goal weight and our other health objectives. But most of all, through our actions, we get to
live healthier, more active lives. In a way, it’s enriching for our lives. We’re adding extra quality years to spend with people we love and to dream of even more.

Now I want to run for even longer! ;)

What do you dream about achieving with your body aside from your goal weight?

Lost & Found (L4G Week 3 Results)

I found a meeting! Well, I thought I found one close to home only to get there and have the place be empty… luckily there was a back up plan about 20 minutes away. I got there in time to WI but I basically missed the meeting. It’s ok though. Wanna know why?

I’m back in my Lifetime range! Like exactly! I’ve worked my booty off this week activity wise (27 APs before today and tomorrows activity) and eating was much better. Everything tracked and measured more accurately. But I’m sore like no other. That Jillian Michaels earlier in the week is still kicking my thighs and hips every time I walk… so without further ado! Drum roll!

b-d-b-d-b-d-b-d-b-d-b-d-b-d-b-d-b-ch!

Here are the measurements from last week compared to this week:

Height- 5’9″
Weight- 156.6 lbs –> 155 (YAY! No more paying for me! Now let’s stay below this number… haha)
Arms- 11 in –> 11 in
Hips- 41.25 in –> 41.25 in
Bust- 36 in –> 36 in
Waist- 27 in –> 26.5 in
Thighs- 22 in –> 22 in

If I continue like this until the end of Lose for Good, I may be game for being really close to my original goal. We’ll see. ;) Off to make some breakfast!

After you have struggled with your program, what do you find helps motivate your focus to come back?