Advertisements
Tag Archives: working out

Day 43 – Protein Smoothie Bowl

13 Apr

Before you ask, yes I will be posting updates randomly about my 44 Day Fitness Challenge here. Why? Well, I have to be held accountable somewhere, because if you think I can hold myself accountable and not cheat you obviously don’t know me very well lol πŸ˜‰

Day 2 in the bag! Or day 43…whichever way you want to count it. Down. Up. It is all the same to me!

Today was a gym session after work, leg day! I always forget other people go out and have social lives on Friday nights. When I get to my gym there are always a decent number of vehicles parked there and I internally start to bitch about how many people are going to be in the gym at 10pm but then I walk inside and there are maaaaybe 6 people? And that is a generously high number. Which is when I realize that the parking area is also used by people going to nearby pubs. Oops?

I mean c’mon, who wants to go to a pub when you can go to the gym? On a Friday night. Almost like you have no social life or something. Ok never mind, this is gonna go dark fast if I don’t start blabbing about something else lol

Protein Smoothie Bowl!

protein smoothie bowl

Granted, not the prettiest looking food item I’ve ever posted on here. But I’m sure it isn’t the ugliest…maybe…

It is a scoop of protein powder, 1 cup frozen mixed berries, 1 small banana, and a tablespoon or so of plain almond milk. Blend until it hits a consistency you like, I prefer thicker so I’m eating it with a spoon rather than making it a drink. This way I can pretend I’m eating ice cream, only ya know, not as tasty.Β  Aww man, now I want ice cream! But even I, with my special quirky ways of interpreting things, can’t find a way to make ice cream an acceptable post workout meal. Too bad though, cause that would be an awesome post workout meal…don’t mind me while I daydream about ice cream for a minute…

Ok, done! For now at least lol

So yeah, two days sorted, only 42 more to go! πŸ™‚

 

Advertisements

44 Days

12 Apr

44 days until I put on a bridesmaid’s dress and celebrate my best friend’s big day.

44 days.

That is not a lot of time to magically improve myself so I look ok in that dress. And yet, if I was counting down to vacation and it was 44 days away I’d be moaning about how far away that is.

Funny how your perspective can change huh?

Now I know that the big day is not about me, and I should only be thinking of her and how much I want it to be awesome for her. But let’s be real here for a sec ok? I’m vain and I want to look good in that dress lol and so while a big part of me is focusing on how she is getting married and I want it to be amazing another part of me is wondering if it is a realistic goal to have 44 workouts in the next 44 days.

In case you’re wondering, I think it is a realistic goal.

I used to make challenges, or find challenges online and follow them. I’ve done 30 day fitness challenges, I’ve done “Lose a Pant Size By (insert date here)”, I’ve done Paleo challenges, I’ve done seasonal fitness and food challenges. Basically, name a challenge and I have either already done it or am up for trying it. But I haven’t made my own challenge in quite a while. The most recent one I took part in was the “100 Squats a Day for 30 Days”, which in case you’re wondering about that, I did it, it was fine. I squat a lot anyways so it wasn’t that hard of a challenge for me. In fact I’m doing a second round of it because a friend wanted to do it and I decided to do it again so she’d have a squatting buddy. Which sounds weird when typed or spoken out loud lol

While sitting here ruminating over the realization that the wedding is only 44 days away I realized I needed a plan. A concrete, have goals and a way to meet those goals, plan. I was recently reminded that having vague goals in terms of fitness (or anything else) doesn’t really work. You need a way to measure your progress towards reaching your goal so you can modify your plan along the way, giving you a better chance at achieving your plan, hitting the mark, grabbing your star, whatever cliche works for you… πŸ˜‰

So, I made a plan. And because I like visuals I made a tracker to put on my fridge. It isn’t anything special, just a 3 column, 15 row, chart that counts down from 44 to the day of the wedding. Each box has enough space for the number of days left, and room for me to write what workout I did that day. I also left space to make a comment about my eating for that day. Not enough space to list my food or anything, just enough space to make a comment about if I did well food wise. I suppose I could put my caloric intake there, be better able to track if my eating is matching my activity levels…I dunno, we’ll see what I do there. Mostly it is to track my workouts because I feel I’ve been dropping the ball with those lately and need something to help motivate me.

I pre-filled out my dragon boat workouts, because those are a given, and certain gym days that I always do. The rest of the days will be a combination of extra gym days and other workouts, so maybe one day I do a workout dvd, or go for a hike, or I dunno, walk the seawall. I’m not creating set-in-stone rules for what constitutes a workout, I feel that would be too limiting, and I want to leave room to listen to my body and what it wants. If I say only going to the gym counts as a workout but I have a day I can’t get there I don’t want to feel like my dragon boat practice, or a long walk, or even some body weight work at home, doesn’t count, or worse, is a failure, when it is in fact still a workout.

I’m trying to be less rigid in my definition of what counts as a workout…I don’t know how well I’ll manage it, but I’m gonna try!

Something I think I should do though is create an overall workout plan, so X number of leg days, X number of shoulder & back & arm days, X number of cardio sessions a week, that way I know that even with my broader interpretation of what counts as a workout I am still getting in a certain number of sessions per muscle group so my odds of hitting my goal increase.

Which, speaking of my goal, I do have them, goals beyond just fitting in the dress better I mean lol They are quantifiable, can be tracked and measured, and my progress towards them will be tracked and measured over the next 44 days. And if I don’t quite make it to those goals in time for the wedding, well, I’ll keep working on them, because ultimately I suppose it isn’t really about fitting in that dress (though part of it is!), so much as it is about getting in better shape and feeling better about myself.

So if anyone wants to join the challenge, feel free! I know 44 days will seem an arbitrary number to anyone not counting down to this specific wedding, so feel free to alter the number to your own deadline. Think of it as a very customizable challenge – pick your length of time, pick what you think counts as a workout, and commit to one workout a day for the length of time you chose.

Remember, success is 10% physical and 90% mental, it’s not your body that is tired and wants to quit, it is your brain and you thinking you can’t keep going. So keep going. Push farther than you think you can go, to prove to yourself you can keep going, and next time it’ll be a little easier and you’ll be able to go a little farther.

bd76c77e43b4d371ff50eb2505b6bb42

If a meme says it, it must be true.Β 

Day 3 and 4

23 Dec

I was too busy to write yesterday, sorry!

Today’s post is about Day 3 and Day 4 of the 12 Days of Fitness.

Are you still on track? I sort of am…kind of…maybe?

Yesterday was more of a weight workout type of day vs a cardio workout, which is what I tend to do.

My brother came over to my parent’s place when they were out (I am staying here for a bit over Christmas) and we put up a bunch of art work for my parents. This may not sound like a workout but it was multiple, heavy framed, pieces of art, most of which got put up on high or hard to reach areas. This meant that while my brother did the math for where to place the hooks so each piece was displayed to the best it could be, I was the one holding the artwork up so he could look at it. I was also running up and downstairs grabbing things, moving all over the house while helping with the whole decorate-the-house project and basically just moving a lot…while carrying heavy stuff…I feel that should count.

Do you think it counts?

I dunno…maybe I am fooling myself. I remember at the time of doing all that work thinking “damn, this is harder than expected, this definitely counts as my workout today” but now, looking back, I am of course, doubting myself. *rolls eyes*

For now, let’s assume it counts. Ok?

For today, Day 4, it is my birthday! Yay birthdays! πŸ˜€

birthday

I have a little tradition for my birthday. I got to WEM, I shop the sales, I enjoy the teeny tiny 5% sales tax that this wonderful province has, I meet up with a friend and we either go for a meal and then a movie or just one of those, or something else completely, and then I make sure I am home in time for a family dinner where the menu was of my choosing.

Oh, I also let myself sleep in a little because if you can’t sleep in on your birthday then when can ya? πŸ˜‰

I thought to use my walking of the mall as my exercise, which may sound stupid, but that really was the plan! It is a big mall and the stores I wanted to visit are not all that near each other soooooo I figured walk as fast as the crowds will allow from one store to another and get a bit of exercise in. The crowds weren’t that bad, but the line to buy things in some of the stores were unfortunately long and slow, which kinda messed with my plan by (1) making me not able to visit every store on my list and (2) not giving me as much walking time as I expected. The bonus though was that because I was now more time constricted I was walking even faster than I had planned, so maybe that helps to balance things out?

Look! At WEM even the penguins go mall walking! And if it counts as exercise for penguins it should count for people as well, don’t cha think? πŸ˜‰

Again, I don’t really know if it counts. After dinner and dessert and time with the family I intended to go downstairs, dragging my laptop behind me, and workout to either one of my dvds or a workout video from YouTube but I am just toooooo tired! All I want to do is have a cup of tea, a shower, and crawl in to bed, which is exactly what I am going to do, because really, when you want to pamper yourself what better day than on your birthday?

Detecting a bit of a birthday theme here? πŸ˜‰ lol

I think I am going to count both days as complying with the rules of the challenge. After all, the rules didn’t specify certain exercises must be done, just that you had to be consciously active and both days I was. Admittedly, with odd activities, but still, I was active! Plus, both days I worked up a bit of a sweat and I definitely felt strain in my arm and shoulder muscles when holding the framed pictures up high for extended periods of time.

So yeah, ok then, while writing this I have decided that both days count. So there! πŸ˜‰

Tomorrow I may do a more traditional workout though, just to get a bit more on track…maybe…

Day 2 of 12

21 Dec

Alrighty peeps, it is Day 2 of the 12 Days of Fitness and I’m sure everyone has been active today, right? Right!

I was up earlier than any human being should be when on vacation but that is what happens when you are staying with parents who wake up early…and when you are going to a morning WW meeting lol

Today was a happy day, went to my meeting, down a pound, entered a new weight decade, out for brunch with the parents, ate a delish meal at Cora’s. It was a random mixture of healthy and non-healthy foods, as most meals out are.

I got Theo’s Omelette which is an omelette filled with oh so many vegetables, covered in cheese, and served with a side of potatoes, fresh fruit, and toast. I asked them to make the omelette with half the normal amount of cheese because restaurants always seem to drown food in cheese and I think it came out with a pretty decent amount.

img_6016

After brunch it was errand time, borrowed my Dad’s car for a while and bonus points for me, I returned it in the same condition it was in when I left the driveway. πŸ™‚

This evening after dinner I realized that even though I had parked far away and walked when going to all the shops I hadn’t really done anything worthy of being called exercise so I grabbed one of the exercise dvd’s I brought and started working out.

Tonight I did the 5 Mile Walk dvd by Leslie Sansone, it is a “walk at home” dvd which means you are walking on the spot, or forwards and backwards, or side to side, in random combinations and taking her word for it that eventually you have walked 5 miles. I tend to jog for large parts of it, and incorporate more arm work, so I get a better work out.

walk-at-home

The woman, Leslie, is so annoying, ugh. But she keeps you moving which is the important part. Normally I play the dvd on my laptop with the volume down low and watch something on tv while walking but my mom joined me this evening so we kept the volume up high and we kept being told to “walk! walk! walk!” lol Β πŸ˜€

My fear that I would fail this challenge by Day 2 has been relieved. Now on to figure out where to fit something in on Day 3!

Did you work out today?

A Hike and A Workout

12 May

Wednesday was Day 3 of this new workout plan I am trying (you can read the deets on the plan by going back a post or two). Even though Day 3 is a body circuit day I figured that didn’t mean I couldn’t do other stuff as well, so I went for a hike. πŸ™‚

I worked Wednesday, my normal day off, 10a-4:30p and when I was done I was sooooo close to this hike called Quarry Rock I figured I shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to go. I used to climb this particular trail on an almost weekly basis two years ago, last year I didn’t climb it as much which is unfortunate. I didn’t do as many hikes in general last year, not really sure why.

So this was my first time on the trail in a while. It has changed a bit, not in a bad way or anything, just natural changes that you will find in a forest. It is definitely showing the signs of lack of rain though, which sucks. The trail is drier, there is less green, the bridges built to get over the water aren’t really needed since there is barely any water. It is kind of sad when you think about it.

But! On the plus side I took pictures, so lets focus on those! lol

New signs have been put up, I’m thinking because of the stupid people you see on the trail wearing flip flops (not even joking!). Or I suppose they could be because some people head in to the wilderness with no idea about what they might encounter, and might not be properly prepared for the possibilities. Meh, who knows!

The next pics are views from the top…

2016-05-11 17.48.372016-05-11 17.48.442016-05-11 17.50.322016-05-11 17.47.46

Isn’t it so pretty? Makes the hike up completely worth it! πŸ™‚

While I was sitting up there, even with my sunglasses on, it felt like the sun was searing a hole through my eyes straight to the back of my head. Poor eyeballs. 😦 So I didn’t stay up there as long as I wanted to, but I did stay up longer than I used to. When I hiked this trail on a regular basis I used to get to the top, take a quick glance, then go right back down because I was hiking the trail primarily for exercise, not to enjoy nature. This time, it was such a harder climb than it used to be for me that I decided to enjoy being at the summit.

That climb really made me realize how lazy I have been. I used to be able to hike Quarry Rock without even thinking about it, which is why it was a great hike to do at the end of a busy work day once a week. It was exercise without being extraordinarily demanding. Now? Ha! Now it is hard apparently. There were parts where the only positive thing I can say about myself is that I was still technically going forward, felt like I was moving in slow motion through molasses, but I was still moving, so that’s something…

I have decided that I will hike Quarry Rock once a week, weather permitting, for the next couple months, get back in the groove of dealing with inclines and rocky surfaces an all that.

Here are a couple pics I snapped on the way back down to show you the shape the forest is in, see what I mean about drier than normal and a little sad looking?

2016-05-11 18.07.052016-05-11 18.07.01

When I got home from the hike I immediately started on the exercises for Day 3. Each set included:

30 seconds jumping rope

15 squat jumps

10 bench dips

15 standing calf raises

20 shoulder presses

10 side lunges (each leg)

25 crunches

I had to make some modifications due to a variety of factors but I did my best to keep to the spirit of the exercise I was modifying so I’d still get the same, or at least a similar, benefit.

The exercises I modified are the jumping rope, the squat jumps and the shoulder presses.

The jumping rope I can’t do because my apartment has an extremely low ceiling, there isn’t enough clearance for the rope. Also, there isn’t enough open space for the rope when it is going around my body. So yeah, not happening. Instead I ran in place for 30 seconds, I didn’t half ass it or anything, I basically sprinted in place for the same amount of time I was supposed to be jumping rope.

As I learned on the Monday, squat jumps and my knees are just not friends. Instead I did normal squats. I didn’t realize until just now when I was re-reading the exercise list that the alternate for the squat jumps was a 30 second wall sit, oops. I’ll do that next time. I don’t think it was soooo bad that I did normal squats though…

The shoulder presses, ok, so this is a weird one. I have free weights, they are only 5lbs and 8lbs but whatever, it is a start! So I have the weights and I know how to do a shoulder press, but I can’t do them in my apartment because the ceiling is too low. I can’t raise my arms above my head when standing and straighten the elbows because I am hitting the ceiling. Instead I did a forward lunge, maintained the lunge position, and did 10 shoulder presses. Then I stepped back, did a forward lunge with the other leg, maintained the position, and did the other 10 shoulder presses. I figure it might even be better than just doing shoulder presses because I am utilizing my core more to maintain balance and using my leg muscles to ya know, stay in the lunge position.

So yeah, that was how the workout went on Wednesday. Haven’t quit the new program yet! lol πŸ˜›

Now Comes The Exercise

10 May

I warned you in the last post this one would be about the new exercise plan so don’t blame me if you’re all “omg all she is writing about is working out, ugh” πŸ˜‰ lol

I found the work out plan I am going to follow by complete and total fluke, such a pleasant surprise!

I can’t lay claim to any part of this plan, I found it here…

http://www.popeyescanada.com/strongtothefinish-en.html

It is the Popeye’s Supplement company website. I was on it seeing if my protein powder was on sale (sadly, it isn’t) and noticed they are having a contest. I can’t enter because it is already started but that doesn’t mean I can’t read the information they have on the site and learn from it.

You select your gender and from there check out four different workouts. I have made copies of all of them with the theory that once I have gotten good at the beginner level I will be able to move up to the more advanced workouts and well, might as well be prepared for that, right?

Here is what the beginners workout plan looks like…

Capture

For some reason the part that most appealed to me was that all the workouts can be done at home. Normally I don’t like working out at home, I like being lazy at home. Buuuuuut there are advantages, like, I don’t have to worry about making myself presentable to the world, I don’t have people in the gym watching me, I can work out at anytime of day or night, my shower is less than ten steps away so when I’m done I can get cleaned up super fast.

Oh, and the biggest perk is that I have no excuse to not work out. My gym closes at 10pm Fridays and Saturdays which means I can’t get there after work and I don’t care for working out prior to going to work so I have used those two reasons for more often than not skipping my Friday and Saturday workouts. Well, no more!

Something else I like about this plan is the alternate exercises. It is smart to not keep doing the same exercises for weeks and weeks and weeks in a row so having things to swap out to keep the body guessing is good. Also, as I get stronger I can add weights to the moves, add more reps and sets, make it more of a challenge. πŸ™‚ Plus it alternates cardio with the full body circuit and even throws in a rest day and a stretching day. It’s a good mix.

I wasn’t intending to have Day 1 be a Monday but I wanted to start the program right away and I found it last night so right away meant Monday. Whiiiich actually turns out to be a good thing because if you’ll notice on Day 2 and 4 I will be doing cardio and in the alternate exercises one of the options is “sport” and those are the days I have dragon boat practice which means my dragon boat practice can be substituted in to this work out plan and count. Yay! I figure I am probably still going to do a separate 30 minutes of cardio on those days, cause why not? But if life gets in the way and one day I can’t fit in time for a run or hike I won’t be missing out completely cause I’ll still be going to practice. Maybe my logic is flawed but it makes sense to me…

So today after work I went for a one hour hike with a friend then came home and immediately did Day 1’s workout. I had to make some minor changes, after the second set my knees were hurting quite badly so during the third set I did 20 squats instead of 15 squats and 5 squat jumps, the squat jumps were killing my knees. Also, in set 3 I did my push-ups on an angle because I felt it was better to do angled push-ups with proper form than pathetic push-ups on the floor that weren’t giving me as good of a workout as they could be. I’ll get stronger and be able to do all three sets of the push-ups soon but until then I’ll do one set angled, build those muscles!

There ya have it, my new work out plan. Easy in the sense I can follow it and have no excuses to not work out. Challenging enough that hopefully it will start me on a lovely path of getting more fit. πŸ™‚

Care to join me?

 

Volunteer for Yoga

29 May

A little over three years ago I signed up for 30 days of unlimited Bikram Yoga. I don’t remember why I did it, there must have been a promotion of some kind because yoga is not cheap and it is not something I can normally afford. I enjoyed it, sort of, and opted to stay on their mailing list in case I ever decided I wanted to sign up for it again and miraculously had the money to spend on it lol.

bikram yoga

Last week I got an email newsletter from them talking about all sort of things and at the bottom there was a blurb about how they are looking for Karma Cleaners.

Basically, they are looking for people who are willing to volunteer to help clean the yoga studio and in exchange they get free yoga classes. A lot of yoga studios do this and I’ve been meaning to look in to it for a while now but never got around to it. Well, there was nothing to look in to since they had emailed me (and everyone else on their mailing list) about it so before I could talk myself out of it I shot off an email asking if there were still spots available.

I got a response and eventually ended up with an interview this past Tuesday. πŸ™‚

On the drive to the yoga studio I went to take a sip of water and managed to spill it all over my shirt and my lap, classic me, sigh. Luckily it was a warm day and my shirt managed to dry fairly fast. The pants though, um, not so much. They were black so it wasn’t obvious they were wet but lemme tell ya, sitting in an interview with damp pants, not comfy!

It was a really informal interview, I think if we hadn’t of gotten along she would have said she’d think about it or something along those lines but we did get along, my availability fit with what days they had openings and well, that was that, I start next Tuesday. πŸ™‚

It seems like a pretty good deal to me, I will clean for a little under two hours a week, all in one session. I’ll be the only one there so I can listen to my music and dance around like a weirdo when cleaning (cause that’s how I roll) and it won’t matter. Also, the studio room will have just had a class in it and right when I am done another class will be starting so the room will be at the hot temperature it is at when the class is in session, which means I am gonna sweat like crazeeeeee! I’m looking at this as an opportunity to not only get an extra fitness session in to my week with the actual yoga class I will take but get an additional almost two hours of activity in to my week with the cleaning. Finding out the room will be at its hot temperature made me want to do this even more lol

I was warned to bring water and to be careful to stay hydrated, also, I was told to wear whatever I want because by the end of my cleaning session my clothes will be soaked with sweat, ew, but yay? lol I’m allowed to use the showers that are there when I am done so I don’t have to leave there looking all sweaty and gross, which is nice.

I’m not a huge fan of cleaning, but I’m hoping when I get in to the routine of being there every Tuesday afternoon it’ll just become another one of the random things I do in a week, shrug. The lady I interviewed with said most of their Karma Cleaners stay with them for quite a while, as in years, they love that they get the free classes and the cleaning isn’t that hard or time consuming.

The two options I had were (1) clean for one session a week and get one free yoga class a week or (2) clean for two sessions a week and get unlimited yoga classes. I chose the one cleaning session a week because I don’t want to over commit. Also, even if I had unlimited yoga classes I don’t think I’d be able to fit them in all that often so it’d be kinda wasted on me. For now I am perfectly content to try to find time for one class a week. πŸ™‚ I was told if I ever wanted to change that and clean twice so I could get the unlimited classes to let them know and they’d find a second cleaning shift for me.

So there we have it, I have officially added another fitness activity to my week, and one I have to stick with because I made a commitment, not one I can shrug off when I don’t feel like it, which for me is a good thing because I excel at talking myself out of exercising lol πŸ˜›

Bikram Yoga, bring it on! πŸ™‚

%d bloggers like this: