Fitness Friday – Least

So many bloggers, especially fitness bloggers (including myself) write about their favorite exercises. They write about how much they love to run or dead lift or squat. They write about their favorite type of fitness; yoga, cross-fit, piyo (what?), etc. Today I want to write about my least favorite exercises, the ones that make me feel completely and totally miserable but I do them anyway because I know I’m going to see results.

 

Dumbbell Shoulder Press:


The majority of my hatred for these is the process of getting into position. Whatever muscle group is being worked to lift the dumbbells off of my thighs and place them over my head is not as strong as the muscle group that’s used to press them. I’m also not a fan of spending the next day feeling like my shoulders are attached to my earlobes.

Rows:

I have no real reason for this. I just don’t like them.

Running:

You guys already know the details of this from previous posts but here’s a sweaty selfie anyway 😉

& saving the worst for last…

Split Squats:


(Taking a photo on a timer with 10 seconds to grab weights and get in position =nearly impossible. This is the best I could do)
Who knows how long I was doing goblet squats thinking they were split squats before someone told me.

I wish I was never corrected. These are killer! I see stars, I want to pass out, throw up and fall over throughout each set. The pain doesn’t stop when you stop either. For about two days afterwards I walk like a penguin mixed with a bull rider, it’s confusing and incredibly uncomfortable.

As strongly as I detest all of these things, there really is no greater feeling than successfully completing them.
Except maybe sitting on the couch with a bowl of ice cream and watching your favorite chick flick… 😉

Enjoy your weekend everyone!!

Advertisements

Fitness Friday – Recovery

It’s not easy being sick. Yes, you lay on the couch in your pajamas and watch TV for days but somehow it’s just not as fun when you feel like crap. This week I realized that it’s even harder to get back to your healthy lifestyle than it is to be sick in the first place. Here are my top five tips for how to get back to fitness after illness:

Make sure you’re ready.
I have not gone jogging because I still can’t take a deep breath without going into a coughing fit. I could only imagine what a run would do to me.

Be nice to yourself.
Do not beat yourself up because you can’t do now what you were doing a couple of weeks ago. Your body is tired and weak; it’s going to take some time. It won’t do any good to call yourself a pathetic weak loser, trust me, I tried it.

Go easy/Lift lighter.
Do not make the mistake of trying to lift the same weight or do the same exercise that was super challenging before you got sick; the only thing that’s going to do is piss you off and make you want to quit.

Take your time.
You will need more rest in-between each set than you did before and that’s okay. There’s no need to hurt yourself after you’ve just gotten back in the game.

Know that your body remembers your routine.
My first workout felt a lot like the first time I ever worked out. This made me think that I had reverted back to square one. By my second workout however I was back to lifting the same weight as before. Do not let your mind trick you into thinking you should give up. Your body knows better.

Until next week – a selfie since since I’ve been slacking on pictures 😉

Fitness Friday – 100 Followers

I got this awesome alert the other day from my WordPress App:

100

Thank you all so much for following, liking, commenting and sharing. There have been days where I’ve considered skipping my work out or eating a doughnut and then I remember I have all of you to answer to so I turn off Downton Abbey, get off the couch and get my butt in gear. I really appreciate all of your support and encouragement along my journey to be sexier, oops, I mean healthier 😉
Thank you!!


The Food:

The other day I was craving Mexican food like there was no tomorrow (fake – unhealthy – American/Mexican food). I searched online for healthy enchiladas and all the recipes involved making every single part of the meal yourself. There was a sauce recipe, a seasoning recipe, a tortilla recipe… Hell, there was probably a way to make your cheese culture on there but I didn’t read that far. I wanted something quick and I wanted it right then. Instead of going to the local Mexican restaurant I went to the grocery store.
I ended up with a taco salad. There was lean, grass-fed ground beef on sale, I got lettuce, pico de gallo, guacamole, jalapenos and I used a little bit of cheese. I also found these awesome ingredients: 


It took a minute to find taco seasoning without added sugar. I did not find this in with all the taco products (I mean, why would I?) but over with the gravy and chili mixes.
  salsa
When labels say things like this, I still read the ingredients. Just because it doesn’t contain “added sugar” doesn’t mean that there isn’t stevia, agave nectar, honey or some other natural sweeteners added. Fortunately, Drew’s truly was unsweetened!
I threw all of this stuff in a bowl together with a few black bean tortilla chips and boom! I felt like I was eating a bowl of junk food. It was delightful.


The Work Out

On Saturday I finally reached 5 pull-ups!!!


Yes, the last one was strained, my mouth was open and I didn’t think I was going to make it but I did – pretty or not.

I went jogging after leg day – Mistake.

My workout last night consisted of decline dumbbell bench presses. I’ve incorporated these because I really want to work the lower part of my chest. These look incredibly awkward and they are. They feel pretty good once you’re in position though.

  

My current max out (kind of) weight with the barbell:
Squats – 165lbs – 3 reps
Bench Press – 125lbs – 2 reps
Dead Lifts – I don’t want to talk about it 😉

Please check out the recipe tab where I’ve added another PurelyFruit recipe and my updated “Who’s Blogging” page.

Have a great weekend everyone! 😀 

Fitness Friday – Nine Months

Sunday marks nine months of consistently exercising. Today marks 4 months of focusing on my diet. I have stuck very diligently to eating purely fruit, avoiding all fast food, most fried food (I have had a french fry, tortilla chip or fried pickle from time to time) and buying mainly whole food and organic products. I have gotten discouraged. I have said words in our workout room that I would never admit to. I’ve cried, whined, bitched and moaned. I’ve begged Kenny to get me a cookie or a brownie or a cupcake. I’ve considered throwing in the towel and living life as an unhealthy chunk because maybe I’d be happier if I could just eat some blueberry pancakes; but I didn’t and I haven’t and I won’t. Why? Because, I am loving this fitness thing.

I love that I want to work out all the time (I just got off the floor from doing push ups at work).I love that yesterday I jogged two miles and then came home and did my upper-body work out. I feel like a total fitness bad ass; so much so that after working out yesterday, I threw on a hat and went out to eat in my workout clothes, sweaty and gross like “girl look at that body, I work out.”

After nine months I no longer feel like I’m trying to obtain one number on the scale or one pant size. I’ve learned that there is always room for improvement, goals to achieve and obstacles to overcome. Basically, the journey never ends and I look forward to trudging ahead and taking you all along for the ride!

 

Thanks for following ❤

Fitness Friday -Cardio

I’ve practiced yoga. I’ve taken meditation classes. I’ve used YouTube and meditation apps to slow down, get in the moment and breathe. When I go jogging my peaceful yogi meditative mind calmly tries to reassure my anxious, tired, cramping, hyperventilating body that I can do this. It goes something like this:

Body: Wait, what are you doing?
Mind: Just go with it, it will be fun.
Body: Fun? I already can’t breathe!
Mind: In through the nose, out through the mouth.
Body: I can’t breathe in through my nose! I think I have allergies. I just inhaled a bug!!
(cue panting and flailing while swatting at bugs)
Mind: Look around you, feel the sun, it’s such a beautiful day.
Body: Do you feel your stomach flopping around? That’s not beautiful. You wore the wrong bra for this! How long do we have to do this? Oh cramp! Cramp!!

This lasted a whole thirteen minutes which ended up being a mile and a half. Honestly, this was a lot better than I expected.

Why am I jogging?

I drive J home after our workout. On the way back to his house I pass the park where I used to jog. I’m always considering cardio and counting calories. I hate counting calories and I hate cardio. I do however, love to eat and therefor I need to introduce some cardio. Kenny and I have started to play tennis on Saturday’s which is fun but doesn’t seem like enough. So last night after doing an upper-body workout and dropping J off, I decided to just do it. I probably swallowed more bugs than I can count, I really was wearing the wrong bra so the park guests got a show and for half a mile I had a cramp which made me run like one side of my body was smaller than the other. All in all, it was a success.

Kind of.

Our new and improved home gym looks awesome! We did a chalkboard wall, put up a shelf so all of our gloves/braces/weird looking workout bands, yoga mats, etc. aren’t in a pile on the floor.


And we set up our new equipment 🙂

   

Happy Friday everyone! 

 

Still Standing

It’s that time of year and that means everything gets a little bit harder, especially eating healthy.

Sorry you haven’t heard from me in a while. I haven’t completely fallen off the health wagon. I am still sober and still eating healthy. This past Saturday marks 5 months alcohol free. I have also made it the entire month of November without a candy bar. So I’m still rocking and rolling, kind of.

On November 1st it snowed in South Carolina. It was record breaking cold, it was raining, it was wet and icy and needless to say, I did not participate in the 5k. On an even worse note, the coughing has returned so running is on the back burner right now.

I’m going back to the doctor on December 5th and I’m not quite sure what will happen but the whole thing really pisses me off. And usually when one thing goes wrong I throw my hands up and completely give up. I have not done that this time, at least not completely. I haven’t been as strict with my food choices but when I look at what I used to eat, there’s a pretty significant improvement. Let me show you what I mean…

A typical day in May 2014:
Breakfast: Coffee with peppermint mocha coffee creamer or a white chocolate mocha from McDonald’s.
Snack: Pretzels or Cookies (if the cookie of the month came in).
Lunch: Wendy’s Ranch Chicken Club Sandwich (chicken served spicy and fried) with a large order of French Fries and a large Diet Coke (who wants the extra sugar of a regular?). Or a Big Mac Meal (large) from McDonald’s, or a 4 Piece Chicken Strip meal with French Fries and a Biscuit from Bojangles with a Sweet Tea (because I’m sure there’s less sugar in a sweet tea than there is in a regular soda).
Basically, I had a specific order for each fast food restaurant within a 10 mile radius.
Snack (again): A sharing size bag of peanut butter M&M’s (except I didn’t share).
Dinner: could be anything from Shake & Bake Pork Chops, Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans, to Hamburger Helper, or a large pizza from Papa Johns (we’d eat it all), maybe fast-food again, or something with a lot of pasta.
Dessert: We would usually eat a very large bowl of Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream or I’d have a King Size Take-5 and Kenny would have Skittles, or sometimes cookies and milk. And dessert was never skipped.

fatties

A typical day now;
Breakfast: Coffee with a splash of half & half and a banana.
Lunch: A can of tuna and some vegetables or a turkey wrap or a salad. For a drink I have either a Seltzer Water or an Unsweetened Iced Tea. And every once in a blue moon I splurge and get a chicken salad sandwich on whole grain bread and a small fry.
Dinner: This is where I’ve been getting creative lately with different healthy items. Chili with 97% fat free beef, or something with spaghetti squash where I psych us out to think we’re eating pasta, and every once in a while we’ll go out to eat but we still try to order healthy meals. And ok, we have had a pizza in the past 2 months but we didn’t eat the whole thing.
Dessert: Usually we just end the night with hot tea (no honey) or I’ll blend up a frozen banana with some all natural peanut butter and cocoa to get rid of the ice cream craving.

better

So basically, when I start getting really hard on myself because I don’t feel like things are working or I start feeling like a failure, I think about all of this and realize just how far I’ve come. In 2013 those typical days would have included all of that junk food plus beer or wine, a pack of cigarettes, and 3-5 Mountain Dew’s. So no, I haven’t been running, and yes I have eaten some pizza, and yes, I even had a piece of cake on Kenny’s birthday but no, I am not giving up. I am not going to use the Holidays as an excuse to ruin the progress that I’ve made. If we can have a healthy Halloween then we can have a healthy Thanksgiving and Christmas too.

image4
image3
(
Tangerines, veggies, deviled eggs with organic mayo, all-natural tortilla chips and hummus)

Kenny and I have signed up for 4 Bikram Yoga classes, we’re looking into private MMA (mixed martial arts) lessons, and I am starting a Paleo Challenge on December 1st. In other words, I’m still around, still kickin, I’ve just got to start breathing before I can post more funny exercise stories!

Happy Holidays everyone and thanks for reading!

2 Month Weigh In

I weighed in at 148. This means that in the entire month of September I only lost 3 pounds. But instead of spending the whole day crying, I got off the scale, did my workout, and went about my day. My weight does not matter. Would I love to be 118-125? Of course. Is it discouraging when your weight loss is going as slow as a turtle while you’ve been working out like a lioness? Yes. But you know what’s more motivating than fast weight loss and a low number on the scale? Feeling and seeing results. I measured myself on September 26th for the first time. I should have measured myself the very first day but I didn’t. In 11 days I have lost 1/2 an inch in each thigh and in the spare tire that’s deflating a lot faster than the scale is changing. I also have a lot more energy, I feel better and my clothes are getting looser. So, excuse my foul language, but f*ck the scale. I want to be fit, I want to be healthy, I want to have energy and be able to hike up a mountain without feeling like I’m going to die. If I can do all of this and look great while doing it then the scales don’t matter.
moms wedding  
This was taken in July——This was taken in August.
          I have lost some serious boob since then! 

What does matter is that on Sunday I ran 3.3 miles!!! Yes, it took 38 minutes. Yes, there was a point where I thought I was going to throw up. And yes, my sister really did start grunting at one point. We made it up a massive hill and were probably 2 miles in when there was another hill up ahead, neither one of us expected it or were prepared for it. We started our slow way up and all I could think about was how dry my lips were and how there was this weird sensation in the back of my head that was making me want to puke. All of the sudden, I heard this noise. It was this strange quiet moan coming from the left. I looked over and there was no injured animal on the sidewalk, nothing that got hit by a car lying in the road, just my sister running beside me. I shook it off and went back to focusing on not throwing up when I heard the noise again, this time a little louder and longer. I looked over and realized it was my sister! She was literally moaning and grunting on the way up the hill, like she was giving birth or something. I started to wonder if it would help with the puke feeling if I did it too and I almost tried it myself but then decided it was just too weird. We made it to the top and she said, “Wow! That was rough. I started grunting there at one point!” I looked the other way (while making the “she’s crazy” face) and responded, “It was rough!! And yeah, I heard that…”
We ran the rest of the way pretty silently, saying things like “we’ve got this!” or “not much further” when we were thinking about giving up. When we finally made it to our destination the same feeling of pride and happiness came to me the way it did when I reached 2 miles, only this time Natalee was there to witness the happy dance. We are going to rock this 5k in November.

(The after the workout selfie. Those stupid straps coming out of my shirt were the latest thing to slap me in the face during my run. Oh the joys of exercise.)

Thanks for reading!