Thursday, December 30, 2010

New for the new year

I've decided that in 2011 I'm going to start doing yoga. After a week of running and strength training, I think my body could really use an hour long stretch session.

Plus, these people look really strong!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Gym Bags

I’m on the hunt for the perfect gym bag. I seem to go through many bags, hoping that ONE of them will be the perfect fit for all my essentials AND be comfortable to carry. I did the same thing with purses. I finally found one (or 5, but the same brand) that actually worked for me, and now I stick with that one brand.
In my head, I’m picturing a backpack (so it will go over both shoulders) with a classy/stylish look to it. Does this exist?

Here are the essentials I need to carry in my bag…

1. Gym clothes – shorts/pants, shirt, sports bra, extra pair of undies, socks, and shoes. I switch out of my work clothes into these, so my work clothes will then need to fit in the bag while I’m wearing the gym clothes

2. Make up bag – I need to freshen up my face after I get sweaty. This bag also carries a small brush and my hair ties

3. iPod – While I don’t run with this often, I do use it when I’m working out by myself

4. A few toiletries – this includes but is not limited to deodorant, perfume and baby powder

5. Chapstick - I have one of these almost everywhere. One in my car, one in my purse, one in my desk, one in my gym bag, and one in my husbands pocket (ha, ha, he always carries one, so I can ask him for his)

6. Watch/HRM – great for my workouts and when I run

7. Gum – I’m a heavy breather when I run, and I workout with people sometimes, so there’s no need for bad breath

8. Keys and a wallet – when I take my bag to work, it also serves as my purse. I just lock up my keys and wallet in my desk until I’m ready to go

9. My lunch – this one is optional. Right now I throw my lunch bag in my gym bag to lessen the number of items I carry. I don’t prefer to look like a bag lady. Simple does it!

I mean, that’s not too much right?!? And if I could, I’d like a little extra room… just because I hate clutter.
I’ve gone through a few duffle bags, but I hate having all the weight on my one shoulder. When I carry my laptop at the same time, it looks like I should fall over.

Okay, can anyone help me? My readers are limited, so if anyone wants to give additional help and also ask their readers, I’d be VERY grateful!!!!

Thanks all!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

I hope everyone is having a blessed day! Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A little break

This past weekend was full of Christmas festivities and not so great food choices.
Friday night my husband took me on a date. We went to the Claddagh Irish Pub and I had their Monte Cristo and fries. We then went to see a movie and grabbed some Coldstone Creamery on the way out.

Saturday was Christmas with his immediate family. Tradition for this is that we order pizza for lunch, and have TONS of appetizers and cookies to keep us satisfied for the remainder of the day. Oh my, it was all wonderful and I was extremely full.

Sunday I was still full from Saturday but know that it’s a good idea to have breakfast anyway, so I started healthy with a banana, Lunabar, and 100% orange juice. After church we headed to my aunts house for my extended family’s Christmas gathering. There was turkey, ham, stuffing, candied yams, rolls, veggie casseroles, green beans, corn, mashed potatoes, and more… Then there was the dessert table; cookies, fudge, chocolate covered pretzels… All kinds of goodness. I still wasn’t very hungry but I ate anyway. The food was all delicious. Chad and I had some pretzel bagels and bagel dip left from Saturday’s events, so we finished that off for a late night snack.

Needless to say by the end of the weekend, I was overstuffed and READY to hit the gym. I was going to email my trainer to let her know how terrible I was with my food choices over the weekend and give her permission to make me suffer. No email was needed. She did that any way. I started with my normal 1 mile warm up, and then we did 20 minutes of INTENSE upper and lower body strength training. Normally we do 30 minutes, but she said because it was so intense, we’d only do 20. Thank God! I wanted to get some extra cardio in, so after work I went back to the gym for more! I did an additional 5 miles and felt SO great afterwards.

Today is a different story. The plan for today was to run 5 miles. With all of the leg exercises we did yesterday plus the miles, my legs are a little sore today. Instead of pushing them again, I decided to rest.

Q4TD: Do you ever interrupt your regularly scheduled workouts to rest?

Friday, December 17, 2010

And so it begins...

This weekend starts my Christmas festivities! What better way to start than having the huge snowfall yesterday and making for a white Christmas! I was blessed enough to be able to work from home! Also, my wonderful husband went out and helped his friend do some snow plowing and when he got home at 1 in the morning, he was kind enough to clean off my car. That way I wouldn't have to do it this morning when I left! <3 He is so great!

Back to the festivities... Tonight is a date night for me and the wonderful hubby, tomorrow is Christmas with his immediate family, and then Sunday is Christmas with my extended family. Friday (the 24th) is Christmas with my immediate family, and then Christmas day is with his extended family! Lots of time with family, and we're blessed to not have to make choices on who we're going to spend time with since they're all on different days!

In the midst of all the craziness and GOOD eating, I have to be sure to fit in time for my exercising! I feel very BLAH when I don't!

OH yes, before I forget, Staci at Impossible is Nothing is having a giveaway - check it out here.

What steps do you take to make sure you get in your exercise when life gets crazy?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Skinny Fat

I want to live as long as I can and at my maximum health. For me, this means being well balanced in all areas of my life; mental, physical, emotion, and spiritual.

When people tell me that I don’t need to go to the gym or eat healthy because I’m “skinny”, it makes me realize not everyone understands what it means to be healthy. Just because someone appears thin, it does not make them healthy. I have a ‘thinner’ appearance, but I also have a decent amount of body fat. I know people who weigh less than I do, but treat their body’s terribly; always eating junk food and never exercising. They don’t understand the long term effects of what they’re doing to their bodies.

I found a really good post titled “Are You Skinny Fat?” over at Weight Loss Journal. Here is the article…

(ie: if thin people don't exercise they aren't healthy)

Do you know what it means to be skinny fat? Just because you are not obviously visually overweight, that does not mean that you are healthy by any means. There are many people that appear to be thin and healthy, but the truth is, unless they are eating a healthy diet and regularly exercising, there is nothing healthy about them. Some people have faster metabolisms and can eat fast food and processed junk without seeing it appear on their thighs or midsection, but does this mean they are in good shape or healthy? The truth is, you can be "skinny fat", which means that despite appearing to be healthy and in shape, you are actually in poor health and not in shape at all.

Products and advertisements that promise a loss of weight without exercise or dieting are really only telling you part of the story. Those diet pills and chemical products that do work, though most do not, really only eat away the fat without making you healthy or really doing anything natural at all. There is a big difference between fitness and weight that most people do not comprehend. To the people who design these advertisements, losing the weight is all that matters, no matter how you reach that ideal weight. The truth is, fitness and health are what really matter, and if you are not trying to obtain fitness and health, then you are doing something wrong.

The truth is this: Weight does not equal fitness.

Losing weight without obtaining health and fitness is not doing it right. Just because you are thin, that simply does not mean that you are fit. The world is full of people who are "skinny fat". What really matters when it comes to getting healthy and losing weight is being fit, in shape, and taking good care of your body in the process. It is actually entirely possible for a thin person to have a high percentage of body fat, higher in some cases than people who are visually overweight.

Simply losing weight does not mean you have a healthy heart. Getting fit and eating healthfully on the other hand can guarantee an improvement in heart health. Losing weight alone does not lower your cholesterol, but regular exercise and healthy eating will. Simply losing weight is not going to lower your risk of contracting certain types of cancers, but regularly exercising and eating healthfully certainly can. Losing weight cannot prevent osteoporosis, boost your immune system, lead to healthier pregnancies and childbirth, help you keep your weight off for life, improve your physical performance or prevent the loss of muscle, but by exercising regularly and eating healthfully, you absolutely can.

So what does this mean? Losing weight is not the important part of getting healthy - The important things to consider are eating healthfully, exercising regularly and taking care of your health. Skinny Fat or Fat Fat your #1 New Years resolution should be get fit!

I found another really good article and you can read it here. Even though it's a site for men, the information in the post is really good. I didnt' want to make this post too long, so I'll just give a short excerpt from their entry. I <3 the blog world!

-Skinny Fat is when someone falls under a healthy weight range, however their body composition is flabby rather than toned
- Someone who appears thin and has a good BMI, but has a high percentage of body fat
- When someone looks lean in clothes, but if flabby underneath
- When a person is thin, but does not eat healthy and eats junk food
- Someone who is thin, but has localized fatty areas, like a muffin top or love handles (hips) or butt and thighs.


Stay healthy and be an encouragement to anyone who is trying to get on the right track, regardless of their size!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Member of the Month

The new managare of the fitness center I use decided to start doing a 'Member of the Month'. Guess who she asked to be the first one?!? Yours truly! She posted a picture of me and a little story about my journey...

Living a healthy lifestyle has become a passion of mine over the past few years. I used to be 20lbs heavier than I currently am. I never exercised, and I ate what I wanted, when I wanted. I had a desire to exercise and eat healthy but I was not motivated. I enjoyed running, but not enough to do it on a regular basis. My weight was increasing while my self-image was decreasing. One day I made a decision that I was going to change. I started going to the gym and eventually change my eating habits. At first, I only ate when I was hungry. Then I started paying attention to what I was eating. Now I eat 4-5 times a day and I try to eat healthy. I let myself have a treat now and then, but I don’t make it a habit. This past summer I started running again and remembered how much I love it. Running gives me time to myself to think and reflect and get away from the chaos of my every day life. Living a healthy lifestyle is important to me for a number of reasons. It prevents diseases that run in my family or ones that could come on from not taking care of my body. It relieves stress and gives me strength to do things I otherwise would not be able to. While I’m not very old right now, it’s important to me that I take care of my body now so it can function at it’s full potential for as long as possible.

I love the fact that our company has a Wellness center. Since we work for a Health Insurance company, you would think they should care about the wellness of their employees, and you can tell they do. Some people want to join a gym but don’t want to pay the high membership fees. Having one in the same building that is FREE is a huge perk! There is enough equipment to workout all areas of your body. If you don’t like working with the machines, you also have the option of the FREE fitness classes.

I like to mix up my routines so I don’t get bored and so my muscles don’t get used to one specific move. Cardio is my favorite, so I usually run 3-4 days a week; some weeks I will cross train (bike or elliptical) 2 of those days. I strength train 2 days a week; one day I will do shoulders/arms/back and the other day I will do glutes and legs. Then there is always 1-2 days of rest (not usually consecutive). Recovery is really important for muscle growth, so I have to make sure I give myself time to rest!

That was really sweet of her! Thanks Adrienne!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Giveaways are alway fun...

I am a little late signing up for this giveaway, but if you get a chance check it out and enter for your chance to win!

Friday, December 10, 2010

I miss you...

There has been some type of glitch resulting in me not receiving my Runners World magazine the past two months :(

I finally got around to checking my online account, thinking maybe my subscription had expired. That was not the case. It said my last two magazines came back as undeliverable. The only thing I can think of is that they were still sending it to me using my maiden name. I hope it gets fixed soon... I miss it!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Satisfy the sweet craving

This past weekend when I was grocery shopping, I was picking up some milk and noticed that Silk has a Mint Chocolate flavor. I bought one to try and it's really delicious! Last night I thought I would bring some to work, try and heat it up for a little treat in the afternoon. I just tried it and it's wonderful! Perfect to satisfy the afternoon sweet craving and perfect that it's warm since it's 22 degrees C outside!

Monday, December 6, 2010

2011 New Years Resolutions

Each year I come up with a list of my New Years Resolutions. I'm a big 'list' person, so I guess it fits my style. Here is my list for 2011...

Simplify and consolidate! I feel like I keep track of too many things in too many different places! For 2011, I will consolidate where information is stored and get rid of the ones I’m no longer using… I keep track of a lot of things… days I spend alone time with God; days I exercise and types of exercises performed; miles run; food eaten; monthly weigh-ins with my hubby; days and types of mental/emotional feedings; prayer journal; praise journal; and more I’m probably not even thinking about right now! I started keeping track of all these things to try and maintain balance in my life but I think too much information in too many places is overwhelming. Also, did you know there is a de-friend day on FB? Apparently I missed that this year though, so I’m going to find my own day to do it! I have people on there that I said ‘Hi’ to once when I was in the 9th grade, never talked to them again and never go on to read any of their updates. I hope that doesn’t make me a bad person. There are 300+ people on my FB. While that’s not a lot, I’m going for simple in 2011.

Realistic fitness goals! Last year I tried to hit 20 miles per week. While some weeks I did well to exceed that number, there were many times that life got in the way and I wasn’t able to make it. I would get frustrated those weeks when I didn’t hit 20 miles. So for 2011, I’m going to have a goal of 15 miles per week. In addition to my miles, I want to strength train twice a week. That’s obtainable so I have no reason to make excuses! A few years ago, my goal was to workout more consistently. I am glad I made that a resolution. I stuck to it and now working out has become second nature to me. It’s part of my lifestyle!

Mental Health! This actually covers a few different areas in my life. Spending time with God, mental affirmations and memorization!!! This needs to happen on a daily basis, but I’m not close to that yet. So, for now, I’ll say at least 4 days a week.

Stop being so busy! I can’t tell you how many months of the year we had something going on almost every night of the week. I took a few months and had to tell people we were taking time off of scheduling things. I know it sounds crazy, but being so busy can really wear you down! The Hubby loves when someone can call us and ask if we want to hang out that night and we can actually do it. (instead of having it booked a month in advance) 2011 will be a less busy year for us!

Stop using the word “just”… I say it WAY too much… I even went back through this post and removed all of them.

I might add more, but for now, these are the ones I’ve come up with!
What are your New Years Resolutions? Are you good at keeping them?

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Good Advice

One of the best pieces of advice I have been given is this...

'at any given point in your life, you should be mentoring someone, and have someone mentoring you'

The advice was given in a spiritual context (and is very true), but I've also found it to be true in many other aspects of life. Work, hobbies, even running and fitness. I absolutely LOVE motivating other people to live an active and healthy lifestyle. I have a group at work, and a few girls I meet with on Thursday nights that I encourage and give tips to.

Lately I've found that I have been lacking the motivation to push myself in my running and exercises. To get out of the rut, I've found someone to mentor me in that aspect. We meet twice a week so she can kick my butt show me different exercises I'm not used to doing. This past Monday was our first workout together and I felt it all the way through Friday! We met on Wednesday and I'm still feeling that one! As much as it hurt, it really felt great! 

(Photo from Veri Good Fitness)

Have you ever tried this piece of advice? If so, how did it work for you? If not, try it and let me know how it works!

What is one of the best pieces of advice you've been given?  

I'm still here...

Life has been SO busy lately... I have 5 different posts started that I need to get on here. I'll try to get at least one of them up this weekend!

Thank you for your patience :)