Thursday, May 31, 2012

3 days of Insanity

Yesterday was my third day of Insanity. Uh ya it hasn't gotten any easier and I don't expect it to. Even as I get stronger and more conditioned I will have to make sure I am bringing it every time. I can't let it get easier...I have to push harder and continually give 100%.

I have noticed that I feel so much better since starting this program. I feel fitter and stronger. Not because my body has changed in 3 days but maybe because I keep pushing through the mental barriers.

There are so many times that I want to just stop during the video but I keep pushing. I dig deeper and try my best to complete every exercise even if I am moving at a slower pace. I don't necessarily have to jump to the moon or move like a professional athlete. I just have to push my hardest and make sure that I don't quit or compromise. If I have more to give then I have to give it.

I ate really well yesterday but noticed that I started to feel a little sick a few hours after dinner. I have learned that your body needs glucose to help repair the muscles after intense workouts. So with that knew found knowledge I made myself a snack because I figured my blood sugar had dropped.

My cute little daughter asked me if I wanted some chocolate or some orange juice to help my sugar. She is too funny. I opted for a brown rice cake with almond butter and 1/3 banana. I also had a handful of grapes.

I threw the "no carbs after 7pm" out the window because I know it is more important to listen to your body. If my body needs something then I have to give it to it. That's it...no excuses.

Today I get to do the Cardio Recovery DVD which I am excited for. I have to admit that every time I get ready to workout I dread it. I know how intense or INSANE it's going to be and I get a little nervous.

So today's workout has me feeling excited to go home. I know we will be doing lots of body weight sculpting exercises as well as lots of stretching. I need it!

Thanks for checking in. Here is a glimpse of what I ate yesterday.

Meal 1: 2 piece Ezekiel toast w/ 1 tbsp almond butter and 4 sliced strawberries
Meal 2: 2 tbsps homemade hummus w/ baby carrots, celery sticks and 2 brown rice cakes
Meal 3: large spinach salad w/ high protein tofu, pico de gallo, cucumber and roasted salsa
Meal 4: Same as meal 1 (pre-workout). 3 bites of veggie lasagna. Vega pre-energizer drink.
Post workout: small banana and 1/2 cup soy milk
Meal 5: brown rice, pinto beans, pico de gallo and lots of asparagus
Meal 6: brown rice cake w/ almond butter and banana slices, handful of red grapes

I also had about 4 BBQ kettle chips when I was packing my daughters lunch for the next day.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Getting Insane


About a year or more ago I bought the Insanity workout program and attempted to complete the 60 day program. I bought it from a guy and he didn't provide me with the nutrition program so I pretty much ate what I wanted but tried to eat healthy.

I only completed the first 30 days and did get some results but not what I wanted. It's not that the program didn't work but it was more that I didn't work the program like I was supposed to. I know without a shadow of a doubt that the program works and is successful in transforming bodies.

I also experienced some knee pain because I was heavier than I am now and all the jumping was hard on my joints. Another issue was that I couldn't perform the workouts at home because I lived upstairs. I had to go to my mother in laws apartment to do them. It was a little inconvenient. So after a few weeks I stopped doing the DVD's.

I have been wanting to try them again but I was a little concerned. First of all I want to build muscle so I thought it was not good to do too much cardio. I was also scared to try the workouts again because they are very intense.

The first time I did them I was literally in tears. It took me several workouts to get my body conditioned enough to get through the warm up...LOL!

The other day I read a comment on a trainers facebook that made me think a little different about my fitness goals. He stated that you can't lose weight and build muscle at the same time. Building muscle requires more calories and losing weight requires a calorie deficit. DUH!!!

Of course if you only have a few pounds to lose I don't think this would be anything to worry about. BUT in my case I have 41 lbs to lose in order to achieve my 100lb total weight loss by my birthday in December.

I have been doing a lot of heavy lifting over the last few months and although I have gotten smaller I have not lost any weight on the scale. I know it isn't completely bad because it also means I have gained muscle. The issue is that I haven't been 100% disciplined with my diet to support weight loss. I also may not be eating enough calories to encourage weight loss either.

This has all brought me to become very frustrated and ultimately to decide to start doing the Insanity program again. Not only will I be shedding fat with the intense cardio sessions but I will also be adding leaning muscle by doing lots of body weight training.

I have also done my research and finally discovered how many calories I should be eating while doing the program. My total daily calories will be about 2,250. Yep, that is way more than I ever thought I should be eating. In order to maintain my current body weight I would have to eat 2,752 calories but since I want to lose weight I have to subtract 500 calories.

So every meal will be around 450 calories. I have constructed my meal plan and look forward to following these guidelines in order to see the best results I can.

This workout program is very intense and it has made me rethink my commitment many times. I have had to remind myself that as hard as it is...it's only 40 minutes per day. I might hate the workout but I hate feeling fat more. I hate not accomplishing my goals....having to suck it in....being disappointed every time I weight myself and not reaching my goal weight after almost 3 years of trying.

Last night during my workout I wanted to stop so bad. I also found myself not giving 100% because in my mind I already convinced myself that the workout was too hard. I made a decision at that moment to push harder. I said "you deserve this body.....you have to earn this body".

I had to motivate myself to get passed the mental barriers and finish strong even if I was ready to collapse on the floor. The end result of my commitment is that I felt strong, tight and inspired. I was inspired by my own strength, dedication and discipline.


Once I have completed the 60 days I will decide what I want to do next. I definitely want to lift weight again so I know I will go back to that. I thought about incorporating them into my workout routine now but just maybe 3 days a week but I don't want to burn myself out and get sick.

I am going to just give 100% to my workouts and nutrition for the next 60 days. I am excited to see my Insane body that I earned at the end. :)

IT'S TIME TO GET INSANE ABOUT MY HEALTH AND FITNESS.

Friday, May 25, 2012

11 Q&A's

I was tagged in Kimberly's blog from Work It Out Gurl. She asked me to answer the follow questions. Maybe you will get to know me a little better from my answers. Hope you still like me when you are done reading..LOL!

1. If you had 10 minutes to be on a popular television show, which show would it be?
The Biggest Loser. I would love to help inspire someone else to lose weight and get healthy. Ummm I also like "So you think you can dance" because I love the freedom of expression through dance. I might get laughed at and definitely wouldn't earn a ticket to Vegas but it would be awesome to experience anyways. I already live in Vegas so who cares what the judges think..LOL

2. If you could have one superpower what would it be?
The power to eat what I want and still look amazing. :)

3. What TV show are you embarrassed about watching.
I am not really embarrassed by anything I watch but I do have a guilty pleasure of watching Basketball Wives, Don't Be Tardy for the Party, Orange County Housewives and sometimes the Jersey Shore. I hate the arguing but for some reason I keep watching. The embarrassing part is probably that I let my daughter watch them with me. My uncle gives me lots of greif about that. He thinks they are inappropriate shows for a 13 yr old.

4. What is your favorite book?
I am not really reading any books right now but I love anything that has to do with health and fitness. Of course I also must admit that I am a lover of the WORD...the Bible. It has helped me through many situations and always inspires me to be my best.

5. What is the worst flavor of ice cream?
Ummm not sure because I love ice cream (non dairy of course). I did try a Hemp milk ice cream once and it was disgusting. I have heard of savory flavors like ketchup and wasabi. I would have to imagine that those are pretty nasty.

6. What is your favorite condiment? Salsa and chocolate sauce ;)

7. What is the ideal comfort food? Pizza and brownies w/ vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce and walnuts. OH man!

8. What is the most important meal of the day? DESSERT!!!!!!!! LOL!
Realistically breakfast is most important because it sets the mood for the rest of the day.....BUT.....all meals are important because they either bring you further or closer to your goals. I believe all meals should be balanced and are equally important...from breakfast...to snack...all the way to dinner. Oh and of course Dessert....don't forget the chocolate sauce. :)

9. What is your dream job?
Personal trainer, motivational speaker....anything that allows me to inspire people to be their best.

10. What subject do you wish you had paid more attention to in school?
All of them. I didn't do as well as I should have in school. I am a smart girl and I didn't maximize my fullest potential.

11. What musical instrument do you wish you could play?
My voice. :)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Emotional Eating

As women we tend to nurture the things we love. It is in our nature to be this way. Today the topic of emotional eating was discussed in a blog that I follow. It made me think about my own struggles. I realized that many women deal with weight issues. It is very rare to find a woman that is happy with how her body looks. It is even more rare to find a woman that is not on a "diet".


There is always this black cloud looming over us. It's seems like we are cursed with the worries of getting fat or not looking good enough. We often have such negative perceptions of ourselves and we carry that energy into every area of our lives.

How do we break this curse? How do we stop the emotional eating and drop the baggage that causes us to fear food and hate our bodies?

I think it starts with learning how to love ourselves and stop measuring our worth with how big our waistline is. We are worth more than that number on the scale. God word says "Who can find a virtuous woman? For her worth is far above rubies." (virtue: goodness, the quality of being morally good or righteous)
We must learn to love ourselves from within. Then we will be able to manifest that same love outwardly and become more accepting of what we see in the mirror. That will then cause us to nurture ourselves...our bodies...our minds and our souls and we will be able to sustain a more healthy lifestyle.

So I encourage you to tap into your inner beauty and strength to accomplish your fitness goals and once in for all break the curse of emotional eating.

Regrets

I spent my 20's trying to make someone love me and most of my 30's trying to love myself. I regret spending too much time trying to fit in a mold and settling for mediocrity. I wasted years feeling sorry for myself and having pity parties. I blamed so much of my life on others actions and felt trapped.

There came a point in my life when it was more painful to stay confined within the space of my deteriorating mind then it was to grow. Growing is painful. You have to force yourself out of your comfort zone and it causes you to be stretched in ways you never imagined. It takes you into deep crevasses that are often scary and difficult to see in.

Growing also means you must become awaken and conscious of who you really are at the depth of your soul. Often times you must confront painful memories that have been suppressed for several years.

I experienced all of these emotions and now I am at a place in my life where I want to spread my wings. I want to live fearlessly. I want to love myself unconditionally and allow myself the space to dream and create what my heart desires.

That can often be a difficult terrain to navigate when you have tried so hard to live safely. After years of being hurt and disappointed you tend to build up walls to protect yourself from feeling pain. You are afraid to dream, afraid to step out and live the life you were intended to live. At times you may think you are not worth that life. You might question your ability to achieve those BIG dreams.

You have spent so many years living small and hiding from life that you can't find the strength to pursue your dreams. Your heart is tired of hurting..your spirit is tired of fighting. At times you would rather just keep hiding than be hurt again by disappointment.

I have come to realize that life is not that scary. Sure there will be a shaking in your knees as you attempt to do something you have never done before. You may even stumble on your first attempt but what if you never try.

You have much more to lose if you continue to settle for less than you deserve. Not living to your full potential only robs you of happiness. It steals your joy and causes you to shrivel up beneath feelings of despair.

I refuse to live my life that way anymore. I don't want to look back 5 years from now and regret one moment. As long as I am living fearlessly and serving others I know I will be pleased with my life.

There are so many things I dream about. So many visions I have mapped out. I have no time to waste. I have to step out now and make them happen. I only have one opportunity to make the most of this life God has blessed me with. I chose to use it all up and be happy. :)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Distorted


Sometimes the only thing that is flawed is our perception of ourselves. No amount of workouts or diets can ever fix that. The work must come from within.

Before you can ever fix your perception of yourself you must address the issues that broke your view. Whether it be childhood bullying, failed relationships, past ridicule, judgement or abuse you must confront the pain.

You must realize that you are perfect and beautiful just the way you are despite what you see in the mirror.

My Own Hardcore Workout




Yesterday my daugther had a very rough day at school and asked me to stay home to comfort her. She didn't want me to go to the gym. It was really hard for me to give in but I thought it was important for her to know that I cared more about her than my fitness goals. So I asked her what she wanted for dinner and she said "STUFFED CRUST PIZZA". I would have to agree that it is some delicious homemade pizza. :)


For dessert I decided to try making ice cream sandwhichs. Since becoming vegan and trying to be healthy I haven't had my favorite frozen treat. I love chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwhiches. So I decided to make my own cookies and then fill them with coconut milk vanilla bean ice cream. Then I rolled them in mini chocolate chips. I only had a small peice but it really made me happy. :)



Next time I will use a different recipe for the cookies though because they were more bread like than I wanted them to be. I used flour, banana, applesauce, vanilla, cinnamon, 1 tbsp cane sugar, baking powder and baking soda. Next time I will skip the applesauce and use Earth Balance for a more cookie like consistancy.



I agreed to stay home from the gym with the condition that she would allow me to work out at home. She agreed. I was not in the mood to do any DVD's and was still in the mood to lift weights so I created my own intense full body workout. I did so many different moves and made sure not to rest for too long so that I could really work up a sweat.



I started off by putting on my leg weights and walking up and down my stairs while carrying two 25 lb weights. I think I walked up and down about 10 times. That was my warm up.


Then I did some leg lifts, side leg lifts and butt lifts with my leg weights on. I did 3 sets of 20 reps on each leg. Next I did some squats combined with a dumbbell back row. I also did deadlifts combined with cling and presses.


Here is where things got really intense. I kept my leg weights on and layed on the floor while I did frog kicks (feet straight in the air, heels together and press knees out to the side as you bring feet in towards you, then back up towards the ceiling). I combined that move with a chest press (25 lbs) and crunch. As I pressed my feet back up towards the ceiling I also pressed the weights up while doing a crunch. Ummm ya that was a heart pumping move. I did 3 sets of 12 reps.



Next crazy move was a chest flye and crunch while opening and closing legs (while they were straight up in the air) with leg weights. Then I did some single leg lifts again with a weighted crunch. I used a 25 lb dumbbell that I would bring back behind my head and then up towards my foot. That worked my chest, rear delts, abs, and leg. Working multiple muscle groups really is a great way to get an intense workout in a short amount of time. It also burns major calories and works up a big sweat.


I did lots of other moves that I dont' want to bore you with but needless to say I was dripping in sweat. I was zoned in on my muscles and really tried to focus on contracting them and breathing through each movement.


After I took a shower I worked on my inspiration board. I have been wanting to work on one for a long time but never really made the time. I cut out some pictures and words from my oxygen magazine and arranged them on a large poster board. I will take a picture of the finished product when I am done.


I am happy that I didn't give into a lazy night and managed to get in an awesome workout and still comfort my baby with some yummy clean food and hugs. :)

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Age is just a number

Pic: Tosca Reno, Author of "Eat Clean Diet" turns 53 today. She is a prime example that beauty, health and strength can be achieved at any age. Age is just a number.

Aging doesn't mean you have to give up being fit or sexy. Eating a clean diet and engaging in regular exercise can help keep your youthful appearance and extend your life. So why wait for things to start sagging? Get going on your fitness routine NOW!

Participating in regular exercise which includes cardiovascular and strength training can help aid in preventing injury that is often associated with aging as a result of muscles loss and a decrease in bone density.

Weight training can help with symptoms of arthritis and diabetes. It also helps discourage the development of cardiovascular disease which is the leading killer of women in the U.S..

Eating food rich in antioxidants can help slow down the normal aging process and also help reduce your bodies risk of heart disease, neurological diseases, cancer and lowered immunity. It will also help prevent those dreadful wrinkles.




List of Foods Rich in Antioxidants
Corn
Lime
Kale
Lemon
Dates
Chilies
Cloves
Garlic
Grapes
Prunes
Mangoes
Squash
Millet
Almonds
Berries
Carrots
Peppers
Oregano
Spinach
Apricots
Broccoli
Cinnamon
Tomatoes
Artichoke
Green Tea
Pineapple
Red Beets
Goji Berries
Acai Berry
Pinto Beans
Broad (fava) Beans
Wheat Germ
Pomegranates
Barley
Rye
Black Currant
Blood Oranges
Sweet Potatoes
Raw Nuts & Seeds
Whole Grain Brown Rice

So show yourself some love by investing in your health now. The long term affects are worth the work.






Disclaimer: I am not a health professional. Any advice or information shared on this blog is based on my own personal beliefs and practices. Please consult a physician before participating in any exercise or diet program.

Sore

Yesterday was my first day back to the gym. I am happy to get back to lifting weights. I worked on arms, abs and cardio. Here is a break down of what my workout looked like. I was really pushing to get the weights up and did a little grunting..LOL! I love feeling strong and powerful after a great weight training workout.

Warm up: Elliptical 5 min
Narrow push ups: 4 sets of 15
Seated Tricep press: 4 sets of 8

Superset:
Cable one arm tricep extenstions: 3 sets of 8
One arm reverse grip tricep pushdowns: 3 sets of 8

Superset:
Skull crushers: 3 sets of 8
Close grip barbell bench press: 3 sets of 8

Superset:
Incline dumbbell curls: 4 sets of 8
Alternating Dumbbell curls: 4 sets of 8

Barbell curls 21's: 2 sets of 21 reps
Stability ball crunches: 3 sets of 25
Standing side twists w/ medicine ball: 3 sets of 20
Crunches with legs straight up in the air: 3 sets of 20
Bicycle crunch: 2 sets of 20

Cardio: 27 minutes of treadmill at various speeds and inclines including 8 minutes of sprints

This morning I woke up very sore. I had a great arm workout and really tried to focus on the muscles I was targeting. Focusing your mind on the muscle really helps a lot. I also did my best to contract the muscle and synchronize my breathing with the movement. I tend to hold my breath and that is not a good thing.

Here is what I ate:
Meal 1: 2 piece of Ezekiel raisin bread w/ almond butter and strawberry jam (no sugar added)
Meal 2: small salad w/ tofu and lemon juice
Meal 3: large salad w/ tofu, salsa and lemon juice. 1/2 c brown rice and black eyes peas.
Prework out: 1 brown rice cake w/ almond butter and a few apple slices
Meal 5: mixed greens w/ tofu and soyrizo sauce
Meal 6: whole grain cereal O's w/ almond milk and a banana
1/2 a granola bar.

That was my day in a nutshell!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Pin UP

Okay so my treat after losing lots of weight is to do a PIN UP style photo shoot. I love the idea of old vintage style beauties that were sexy but yet classy. They also had nice feminine curves that made them even more attractive and beautiful.

During my heavy times I never felt attractive much less sexy. So this photo shoot will symbolize so much for me. Not only have I overcame obesity but I have also overcame my insecurities. I am learning how to appreciate my body and love my curves.

I want to be able to show off my hard work once I reach my 100 lbs weight loss goal. I planned on doing it sooner but since this means so much to me I want to make sure I am looking the very best I can.

Sure I could put on a cute pin up dress right now and take beautiful pics but I don't want to settle yet. I know I can achieve more and want to celebrate that at the right time.

I found this pic that I love and gave me a bit of inspiration to get my butt back in action and headed in a positive direction.





This pic embodies everything I love about pin up. So sexy but still leaving something to the imagination.

Can't wait to show my hardwork off like that. :) I am excited.

My pants are tight



The last two weeks have been a little crazy with my workouts and food. I have not been consistent with my workouts nor have I followed a structured diet. Due to that my pants are fitting tighter and I gained a few pounds (about 3lbs). I also know I am bloated because that time of the month is coming soon. BUT I do know it is largely contributed to my lack of discipline over the last 2 weeks.

One week I was focused on my daughters birthday and I skipped a few workouts and indulged in pizza, cake and other sweets. Last week I missed some workouts due to preparing for Disneyland and indulged in some fatty foods and sweets again.

At Disneyland I didn't have the option to take prepared food with me. I took some snacks for the bus ride on Friday but couldn't really pack anything since we had to leave all our luggage and bags on the bus the whole day. I knew my food would get bad and I couldn't use ice because it would melt.

I tried my best to make healthy food choices but I did leave a little room for a sweet treat since we were at Disney. :) Here is what I ate during my Disneyland trip.

Friday-
2 Ezekiel Cinnamon Bread sandwiches with almond butter and strawberry jam
apple slices and raw almonds
1 chocolate chip granola bar
California Adventure food:
teriyaki tofu bowl w/ veggies
iced vanilla coffee with soy milk
Veggie burger with side salad and 3 onion rings

Saturday:
2 small bowls of oatmeal w/ brown sugar and raisins
Disney food:
hummus w/ pretzels
veggie burger w/ sweet potato fries
frozen banana dipped in chocolate and peanuts (215 cals...not bad)
grilled veggie and whole grain salad w/ bread stick
1/2 chocolate raspberry cupcake (shared with daughter)
churro
a handful of popcorn

We walked a lot of Saturday and I was so exhausted. I also wanted to eat a lot since we walked so much. We were at the park from 10am to 10pm. We only sat down for about a total of 1 1/2 hours. My feet were hurting so bad. My back was also hurting from carrying a bag full of drinks, jackets, clothes and our wallets. I would have to say the bag weighed over 5 lbs when it was full of drinks. So that just added to the calorie burn..LOL!

We got home from Disney around 3am on Sunday morning. My daughter and I slept on the bus all the way home but still managed to sleep til 12:43pm Sunday afternoon. I could have slept all day but I didn't want to do that. I had to go food shopping and wash some clothes for the week.

My mother in law made us food so we went over to her house and had some brown rice with black eyed peas, soyrizo sauce to put over the rice and potato salad. Those are some of her traditional Belize dishes but she tried to make them Vegan for us. She also cut up some watermelon for me and bought us some vanilla bean coconut milk ice cream.

We ate lots of food and relaxed on the couch while we chit chatted and watched TV til about 7pm. It was a great relaxing Sunday. Then I went home and made some pizza. Yep I ate about 4 pieces....LOL! Needless to say I put on my pants this morning and they are tighter than usual.




I am not stressed though. Today is a new week and I am back to my regimen. I am back to my workouts and structured meal plan. I brought some healthy food with me to work today and intend to go to the gym 6 days a week this week. I planned out my workouts and meal plan on Saturday. So I am ready to go today with no excuses. :)



I matched my calories with my workouts. On my light workout days (arms, shoulders) I will be eating no more than 1650 calories. On my heavy days (legs, back and chest) I will be eating no more than 1950 calories. I plugged in my food to www.myfitnesspal.com account and made my shopping list. I also made a calendar and planned out my workouts for each day. This makes it easier to map out my success.

I only have 6 months to make this 100 lbs goal happen. That will be the best gift I can give myself on my 35th birthday. Please keep me accountable. Thanks. :)



Thursday, May 17, 2012

Struck a nerve

I was a little bothered by a post that I saw on a fitness trainers Facebook page. So annoyed that I "unliked" her page. I don't think she meant it to sound the way she did but it got me thinking. I also read another blog that also brought up the same subject so I wanted to discuss my views on the subject.

The comment on the trainer's page brought up the issue of heavier people giving weight loss and fitness advice to people who are smaller than them. She basically made it sound like a heavier person shouldn't be giving that advice because they obviously aren't doing it themselves. It kind of irritated me because that is so ignorant to say.

I am heavier than some people that ask for my advice or that are inspired by my weight loss. Am I not able to give advice or be an inspiration because I weight more than them.? If I am following a healthy lifestyle and I am advocating one why can't I?

This is something that I think about when I consider training clients once I get certified. I know I don't know everything about fitness and nutrition but I will learn more as time goes by. I believe we never stop learning and growing.

My main reason for wanting to pursue this career is because I am passionate about helping people who are desperate. I am inspired to be healthy and set an example when I look at a heavy person struggling to walk. I want to be the one that says "Hey let me help you get healthy". I don't care about the money associated with the career. I care about the people and the life I can possibly save or improve.

When I was my heaviest I dreamt of someone letting me be their "charity case". I wanted someone to come up to me and say "let me help you for free". I didn't have the money to hire a trainer and to be honest I was very insecure and scared to approach a trainer. I was intimidated by the way most of them looked and thought they might judge me for how I looked.

I never want to be that trainer. I don't even want to be called a personal trainer because I think there is a stigma associated with that title. I think drill sergeant when I hear that word..LOL! For most obese people they carry enough shame due to there body issues. They need the love and support of someone that has felt the way that they felt. They need someone that understands how hard it is to start this healthy journey because they have been there too. They need a coach....someone that roots and cheers for them and inspires them to be their best.

So the subject really touched a nerve with me but also made me think about my own insecurities in another way. I have always thought about my image. I know when I am looking for a trainer I look at their bodies. Yes I have judged! I figure that if someone looks the part then they will be able to help me transform my body.

I guess that is why I feel I would be judged as well. I feel I have to look the part too and so I procrastinate to finish my certification. I have finished all the exam questions online and now all I need to do are do my essays and case studies. That's it! Why do I keep pushing it to the side? I guess I feel inadequate to be a trainer because:






#1 I still have weight to lose (yet I have lost over 60 lbs)



#2 I don't know everything (which I know I never will:)



#3 I feel I will be judged by other trainers or clients (and I judge myself):




What do you think about this subject? Would you hirer a trainer based on their body? Would you accept advice from someone that is heavier than you?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

My Confession


(Not an actual picture of my stomach)

I have to confess that I have always dreamed of competing in a fitness competition. I can remember years and years ago sitting in front of the TV watching them and wishing I could do what those women were doing. At that time I never really believed in myself enough to try. I just watched competitions and admired how strong the women looked. I have always thought a fit physique was beautiful.

Something in me gets fired up when I see a fit female physique. Not a skinny body but one that is toned and athletic. I want to achieve it so bad it makes me emotional thinking about it. It is not just about the beauty I see in the natural body. I am also driven by the discipline and bad ass attitude that is associated with it. I want the confidence and strength that comes with the body.

I know I can achieve it but I would never compete on a stage because I am so embarrassed of my stretch marks. I have a mommy tummy full of them. I have them on my hips, inner thighs, back of my arms and on my breasts.

I just can't see myself getting up on a stage in a bikini and feeling confident with how my skin looks. Even if my body is nice and tight I just wouldn't feel comfortable.

I often look at myself now and feel disgusted when I look at my stomach. I dread anyone....especially a man seeing my stomach. It doesn't make me feel sexy. It's crazy that when I think of being intimate with a man I get scared. I wonder if they will be disgusted by my stomach and stretch marks.

I am learning to accept that part of me. I am learning to accept the fact that I may never have a sexy stomach because of the stretch marks unless I get a tummy tuck. It's hard though because I also know I caused those scars on my body.

They didn't only come from child birth but they came from years of overeating and being obese. I destroyed my body by being lazy, weak and undisciplined. I am not that woman anymore but yet I am reminded of her every time I look at myself in the mirror.

I am not downing myself because I know I have came a long way and I am proud of that. I am just expressing some of the deep rooted issues I have with my body. I guess they are just a part of this journey. I can either look at them and let them cripple me or I can use them as a badge of honor.

I can let them stop me from feeling fulfilled or I can use them to motivate me to never be defeated again. I have the choice to love myself no matter what. I have the choice to see the beauty in what others may think is unattractive.

This body has shown unconditional love, created a miracle, endured pain and rejection, defeated obesity, ran a 1/2 marathon and inspired others to become healthy.

I must choose to realize that what I see in the mirror does not define me nor does it limit me. I can do and be who ever I want to be despite the "flaws". I am not inadequate...less attractive or ugly because I have these scars on my body.

Any man worth my love will see past the "flaws" and find the beauty in my heart. They will appreciate the journey I have traveled because it made me the woman I am today.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Take A Look Back

"On days you may feel you aren't making much progress,take a look back at how far you've come. Fitness is a journey and hard work will pay off. First pic Jr. Nationals 2004 last place. Second pic 2011 IFBB Figure Olympia 1st place" Nicole Wilkins IFBB Figure Olympia


There are days when I get so discouraged because I realize that I still have a way to travel to reach my desired fitness goals. I look at other women's bodies and they inspire me to eat clean and workout hard. What I fail to realize is that many of those bodies took years of hard work and dedication.

They didn't get those bodies overnight. They didn't even get them in a few months. Many of them have been diligent and dedicated for years.

I am glad I saw this post today because it made me realize that all things are possible as long as I keep going and never settle for anything less than my full potential and desired goal.

Today, I will just celebrate my accomplishments and remember how far I have come. At one time I was so insecure with my body I wouldn't wear a dress. When my daughter was about 6 yrs old she drew a picture of me in a dress and said that is how she wanted me to look. I guess she was tired of seeing me look frumping. I was too! :)

I am happy that I can wear them now and feel confident. I also get checked out a lot more when I wear them...LOL! That is always a boost of confidence.



On Mother's Day....ready for church.





























Monday, May 14, 2012

Metabolism

This post is long but filled with lots of great information so I hope you take the time to read it.

What is metabolism? We hear this word so often when it comes to weight loss. What role does it play in shedding those unwanted pounds? How can you manipulate it to get the desired results you are looking for? How important is food and exercise when it comes to metabolism? How does this whole thing work?

On my journey to not only shed my own weight but also learn about health and fitness I have been doing lots of research and reading. I want to know how the body works. I want to know what we can do to not only lose weight but ultimately live a healthy sustainable life.

So I learned some stuff about our metabolism that helped to open my eyes and maybe it will do the same for you. Let me know what you think after reading.


What is it?
Metabolism is a steady process of building up and breaking down energy stores and body tissues. In other words your metabolism is what breaks down the energy you get from food and turns it into fuel for regular body functions including breathing, basic body movements, staying warm and of course working out.

The speed of your metabolism is called you metabolic rate. It establishes how much food you need to consume to maintain a stable weight. If you gain weight it means you are eating more energy then your metabolism can process therefore your body stores it as fat.

Note: A calorie is the amount of energy needed to increase the temperature of 1 g of water by 1 degree C. Calories are the bodies currency. The body needs calories for energy. The metabolism is what uses calories for energy.

You basal metabolic rate, or BMR, is the rate at which your body uses energy at rest. Your BMR and metabolism depend on a variety of factors such as your height, weight, muscle mass and activity level. Of course an active person who lifts weights has a much faster metabolism then some who lives a sedentary inactive lifestyle.


How does my diet affect it?
Extreme diets that eliminate complete food groups, skipping meals, drastically reducing calorie intake and yo-yo dieting can confuse your body causing it to store fat for fuel. When food is scarce your metabolism slows down in response to your reduced calorie intake. The body goes into starvation mode making it less likely to shed excess fat.

Many "diets" require you to eliminate or drastically reduce certain food groups such as carbs or fats. Doing this affects your body in a negative way. Sure you may initially lose some weight but as soon as you begin to add those foods back into your diet the weight will come back. Eliminating certain food groups robs your body of essential nutrients. When you begin to reintroduce them again your body clings on to nutrients causing rapid weight gain.


Many competitive athletes and bodybuilders incorporate extreme diets that restrict them of consuming specific food group. This of course creates that lean muscular physique that wins medals and trophies but it also wrecks havoc on their metabolism. Many competitors destroy their metabolism. Their bodies often relaliate by packing on the pounds. Many have trouble losing weight again due to the damage they have caused to their metabolisms. For more information read this blog.

So as you can see diet and exercise play an essential role in a healthy metabolism. It is important to have a well balanced and structured diet. Eating a combonation of lean protien and complex carbs every 3 hours not only helps fire up your metabolism but also helps regulate your blood sugar levels resulting in long lasting energy. A fired up metabolism means it will help burn those calories you consume more efficiently resulting in steady and healthy weight loss.


How does exercise play a role?
Intense activity is another key factor in maintaining a fast metabolism. What ever activity you like to engage in whether it be running, dancing, weight training or hiking make sure to maintain intensity during the workout. It is important to be aware of your body and give it 100% of your effort, energy and focus. Connecting your mind with the movements will help maximize your results. Don't zone out while watching TV, reading a book or thinking about all the chores you have waiting for you at home. Stay commited to each exercise during your workout.

One of the best aerobic workouts to help speed up your metabolism is HIIT. This stands for High Intensity Interval Training. It requires you to exercise at a high intensity for a short period of time and then drop the level of intensity to recover for the same amount of time. So you might do like I do and run for 30 seconds at 7mph and then rest for 30 seconds before your next sprint. These short interval workouts surprise your muscles. You don't have to spend 2 hours on the treadmill. One of the best form of fat torching workouts can involve 30 minutes of HIIT sprints. That is my kind of workout.

Lastly but definitely not least is weight training. The benefits of weight training far exceed your time in the weight room. Weight training not only stimulates your muscles during your workout but for hours following your workouts. Did you know that 1 lb of muscle burns approximately 25 times more calories then a pound of fat. It requires more energy to maintain muscle than fat resulting in a higher metabolism. The more lean muscle you have on your body the faster your metabolic rate which means more calories burned and more fat lost. :) Sounds good to me!

Now what?

So how do you put all this information together to help reach your weight loss goals. Well you eat a clean balance diet including lean proteins, complex carbs and fats. You make sure to eat every 3 hours and NEVER skip any meals. Then you burn those calories consumed by engaging in exercise that includes some HIIT and weight training.

Remember if you are going to eat the calories you need to ensure you are using up that energy or your body will store it as fat. So it is important to not only eat well but also move your body. That will not only ensure you are moving towards reaching a healthy weight but also contributes to higher energy levels and an increases sense of body awareness. All those benefits result in a healthy body and lifestyle.

Eating well and exercising not only helps maintaining a faster metabolism but it also affects every other aspect of your life. When your body, mind and soul are in balance it helps create a free flowing channel of positivity in your life. It also helps reduce the risk illness and disease.

So eat healthy and get moving like your life depends on it.....because it does.

Note: I am not a healthcare professional. This blog is intended only
as a way to help encourage people to live a healthier lifestyle and to document my journey. Please make sure to consult a healthcare professional before engaging in any fitness routine or starting a new diet.


Information adapted from The Eat Clean Diet by Tosca Reno. For more information or to follow her blog click here.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

YOGA

Well this morning I woke up at 7am and had time before I had to get ready for work so I decided to do some light yoga. I went downstairs and popped in my Jillian Michael's Yoga Meltdown DVD. I just stuck to level one and also did 2 circuits of weight training. I just kept it simple with bicep curls, shoulder presses and tricep kickbacks. I did 12 reps using 25 lbs dumbbells.

It felt great to get a little sweaty workout in before I started my day. I am feeling better since I decided to take off a few days from heavy weight training. I have also been eating more and to be honest I feel lighter and actually dropped a few pounds.

I think it is from not retaining water after heavy weight training sessions. I tend to weigh more when I workout hard. So my stomach feels flatter and my body feels lighter.

Can't wait to get back to my workouts and to start eating more foods that I love.

Have a great weekend. See you Monday!

Friday, May 11, 2012

WOW!!!!!!!

This is why I am so confused and frustrated. Do I eat more since I am vegan and lifting weight 5-6 days a week? I did some research today and found this on VeganBodyBuilding.com.

I am super scared to eat this much. I feel I would gain so much weight. I also think about the diet that I had customized for me that had me down to 1,500 calories on low carb days and 1,800 on high carb days.

What do you do when you have all this information? I guess I will continue to experiment and see what works best for my body.

Wish me luck!

------------------
Sample Muscle Building/Muscle Maintaining Nutrition Programs for active women
These programs have been created for the female audience and the quantities of food are based on approximately 125-150- pound active women. They are just samples and exact foods and quantities can be altered based on interest, size, age, and activity level. Keep in mind these are designed for active women who are burning more calories throughout the day due to exercise/sports than a sedentary person, and require extra nutrition (calories) to recover from exercise.

Women’s Meal Program #1

Meal #1
3 pieces of whole fruit
Fruit smoothie
16 ounces of water

Meal #2
2-3 servings of assorted nuts
Flax crackers with hummus
16 ounces of water

Meal #3
Burrito filled with quinoa, veggies, avocado, and greens
Small green salad
16 ounces of water

Meal #4
Vega Whole Food Health Optimizer Protein drink
1 baked yam with broccoli and small spinach salad
16 ounces of water

Meal #5
Bowl of brown rice, kale, beans and coconut curry sauce
Green salad with a variety of greens, seeds and nuts
16 ounces of water

Meal #6
3 pieces of whole fruits
Fruit smoothie

Estimated Totals:
Total Calories = 3,000
Total grams protein = 120g
Total grams of carbohydrates = 518g
Total grams of fats = 50g
Total water consumption = 116 ounces (factoring in water for protein drinks too)

Women’s Meal Program #2

Meal #1
Bowl of oats
Green Smoothie
16 ounces of water

Meal #2
3 pieces of whole fruit
Fruit juice or fruit smoothie
16 ounces of water

Meal #3
Bowl of lentil or vegetable soup
Large green salad with greens, sprouts, seeds, nuts, avocado with Vega EFA Oil
8 ounces of coconut water

Meal #4
2 whole-food based energy bars
Green Smoothie
16 ounces of water

Meal #5
Brown rice with steamed broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and other veggies
Green salad with dark greens including kale, spinach, and collard greens
16 ounces of water

Meal #6
Vegetable sushi with seaweed, rice, avocado, and cucumber
Small bowl of ginger soup

Estimated Totals:
Total Calories = 2,900
Total grams protein = 135g
Total grams of carbohydrates = 482g
Total grams of fats = 48g
Total water consumption = 108 ounces (factoring in water for protein drinks too)

Taking a Break

I decided to take a break from working out for the rest of the week. I have been way too weak and honestly I think burned out.

So I will be back on Monday with a refreshed body and renewed mind. I am also going to start experimenting with other food because this tofu and salad thing is getting way too boring.

I read something on a Facebook page I follow and it got me thinking differently about my goals.

I realized I am not trying to be a fitness competitor, lean out for a photo shot (in the next 4 weeks), or wear a bikini (EVER!). So why am I trying to eat like I am?

I have to make sure that I am eating things that I enjoy eating and maybe I will be more likely to eat more calories. I am currently tired and literally sick of eating tofu everyday for lunch and dinner.

I honestly don't feel comfortable consuming that much soy. So I am going to try something new and I will let you guys now how it goes after a week.

This is more of a lifestyle change for me rather than just a weight loss journey so I have to think long term. Eating the way I am trying to eat is more of a temporary thing. I have 7 months (by my birthday in December) to lose 36 lbs (for a total of 100lbs) so I need to ease up on myself.

What do you think?

Thursday, May 10, 2012

What Am I Doing To Myself

I guess it didn't really hit me until today but I realized that I AM STARVING MYSELF!

I read a blog that I follow and saw the amount of food this tiny 120ish pound (or less?) lean mean muscle machine is eating and I felt sick. I am eating the same amount of calories as she is and she is way smaller than I am.

I am not trying to starve myself but I have it ingrained in my brain that I have to eat less to lose weight. That may explain why I am feeling so weak and sick. My body is eating itself...LOL!

I am working out and probably burning through more than half the calories I consume. Since I am building muscle it takes more calories to function.

I know I have said that I need to eat more but I tend to not be hungry for food when I get home sometimes. AND I am still scared to eat thinking I will gain weight and get fat again.

I think I am sick in the head to be honest with you because I am hurting myself. I really have to stop this and get with the program before I hurt not only my metabolism but my entire body.

It is no wonder why my brain hasn't even been functioning properly. I am not giving it enough nutrients to work off of. DANG!

So keep me in your prayers as I attempt to stuff my face with all the nutrients my body so desperately needs.

I have to do this and get it right once and for all!!!!!

Here is an example of what I have eaten so far and it's 11:14am.

7:30am- protein shake (water, protein powder, flaxseed, 1 c. frozen berries), 1 c tofu with hashbrowns, pico de gallo and ketchup
10:00am- gala apple and 1 oz raw almonds

For lunch I brought:
6 oz tofu w/ broccoi, 1/2 c quinoa, and pico de gallo

Ummmm no that is not enough food for this body!!!!

Rest day and a celebration

Yesterday was my daughters birthday so I promised her I wouldn't go to the gym. I let her pick her favorite meal and we had ice cream sundaes for dessert. She gets the cake on Saturday.

She decided she wanted a burger and salty, crispy fries. I made portabello burgers and baked some crinkle fries. Yep! I had one and I loved it. I didn't feel one bit guilty for indulging in a semi fattening meal (fries..and wheat bun).

I also enjoyed a nice soy ice cream sundae with chocolate syrup, fresh strawberries, banana, crushed mini Oreos, and sliced almonds. I loved it!

I had a great dinner with my daughter, mom and mother in law. My mother in law was so impressed by the burger. She said "wow I never have to eat a regular burger again". I seasoned the portabello mushrooms with salt, Italian dried herbs and garlic powder. Then I added avocado, ketchup, mustard, sauteed onion, lettuce, tomato and pickles to the burgers.

Man were they the BOMB!!!!!

Later that night I was absolutely weak and exhausted. I am going to make an appointment to see my doctor next week and get my blood tested. I think something is going on and I want to be proactive before I end up getting sick.

I think it is more on the lines of a vitamin deficiency. I am sure the combonation of my diet and my workouts is wiping me out. Especially since I have not been taking ANY supplements at all.

I hope to be back to normal energy levels soon.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Loaded Guns :)




I have to be honest and confess that I want some big guns...LOL! YEP, I want to have some big biceps. Of course not manly ones but definitely arms that get a second look.



I had a great arm workout yesterday. I didn't follow my workout program I just did all of my favorite bicep and tricep moves. I love feeling the burn of a good arm workout.



I also did some abs and 30 minutes of moderate intensity cardio. I get so bored doing cardio so I have to mix it up. My MP3 player died again so I struggled to remain on the cardio equipment.



I did 15 minutes on the bike and 15 minutes on the elliptical. I usually vary the speed, incline and resistance when I am on these machines. It helps the time go by and keeps my body guessing. :)



I did the following exercises:


Hammer dumbbell curls


Cable curls


Incline Dumbbell curl


Z bar curls


Tricep cable extensions w/ rope attachment


Single arm tricep cable extensions


Tricep pushdowns


Tricep bench dips


Dumbbell tricep extensions


Abs: standing twists w/ medicine ball, stability ball crunches, roman chair leg and knee lifts


15 min stationary bike


15 min Elliptical trainer



I ate well yesterday too. I got some advice from Tom the trainer at the gym. I asked him about carbs. He said that I should eat my carbs early in the day. He said to stop eating carbs at 5pm on workout days and 2pm on non workout days. I am going to try that and see how it works.



He also asked me if I had lost weight. I said "not on the scale but I am getting smaller". He said he can tell. He said he caught a glimpse of me when I was using a machine and had to do a double take. He said I looked smaller.



I expressed my frustration with the scale and he told me not to worry about it. He said to remember that muscle takes up less space on the body but weighs more. He said if your clothes is fitting different and you are losing inches you are doing good.



So I have to relax and let the process happen as it is supposed to. Rather than focus on the scale I will focus on building muscle and sculpting this gorgeous body..LOL!



I remember years ago I was so ashamed to look at myself in the mirror. I was disgusted with how I looked and avoided my reflection. Yesterday while at the gym I purposely starred at myself. I had an inner conversation with myself and acknowledged that I look great. I don't have to be ashamed with how I look. I have came a long way and my hard work is finally paying off.



I have to look at myself in the mirror and love what I see instead of pick at what I don't like. So I did a whole lot of starring in the mirror yesterday while working out. I don't care if anyone saw me and thought I was conceited..LOL! I have to embrace myself and begin to love and accept myself. No matter what anyone thinks of me. :)



Todays' thought:


I am a beautiful, strong and powerful woman. I love every curve of my body because I love myself. I am a beautiful, strong and powerful woman who walks with confidence because she is proud of who she is. I am my own inspiration.




Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Comparison

It's pretty crazy to see how times have changed. Many of us are so hard on ourselves because of the images we see in the media. We compare our bodies to those we see in magazines and make ourselves sick trying to achieve the "perfect" body.

A size 14 is now considered to be plus size but the average woman is a size 12.

What has changed? Why are we so hard on ourselves?

The women in the first pic where the top competitors at Muscle Beach in 1952. Funny thing is that most women look like that now but strive to look like the second pic.

I personally perfer the first pic. :)




I am strong and very pretty!

Yesterdays workout was good but I was a little pooped after my weight training so I didn't complete my 30 minutes of moderate cardio. Instead I did 10 minute of sprints and 5 minutes of walking uphill. My MP3 player also died so I didn't have anything to keep me pumped.

My mind has been a little out of it lately so I had trouble focusing. I am in a weird space and I am not really sure why. Part of me feels like I just don't care about anything. Not in a negative way but I don't care about what people think.

I think this is a part of me learning how to become more bold and it's giving me the drive to pursue some dreams and achieve some goals. I have always been so worried about others opinions of me and afraid of judgement but lately I don't care.

I don't try to fake anything. I am just who I am and if you don't like it them it's not really my problem. I am not being arrogant or mean I am just learning to move more freely through life without worrying about others opinions of me.

So yesterday I worked out my back and abs. The trainer at the gym came up to me and corrected a move I was doing. I am glad he did. I never had anyone teach me this kind of stuff. I just watch videos and try to do them myself. :)

I was doing the move right I just had the cable adjusted too low. I felt it still working my back but it was hitting a totally different part. When he adjusted it for me I felt more of the upper back which is where I was supposed to feel it....LOL!

I ate well yesterday but did have a piece of vegan cheese pizza I made. It was super delicious. I made it stuffed crust and boy did I want another piece. BUT I was good and didn't do it. Later at night I was so tempted to go get another piece but knew it was too late and I shouldn't be eating like that. So instead I went and got a few raw almonds. YAY for me!

I am not logging my food and workout because I am not sure if you want to read through it. If you do let me know and I will start logging it again.

Today's thought:
I am strong. I am my own trainer, motivator and coach. I push hard because I know I can achieve my goals. I am worth the time and effort it takes to make it happen. I do this for myself because I deserve to feel amazing. I am strong!!!!!!!!

Compliment:
I wear my hat to the gym everyday because (like I have explained before) it keeps me focused and catches my sweat.

Well the other day I went in and didn't have my hat on yet. I had to pay for my membership so I had my hat in my hand so I could put it on before my workout.

I got on the elliptical and the trianer came up to me and said "you know that is the first time I saw you without your hat".. and I said "and?"....he said " you are very pretty".....I said "thanks"

That made me feel great. I have to admit I pushed a little harder during that workout...LOL!

Monday, May 7, 2012

How to Workout When You Are Overweight

How to Workout When You Are Overweight

This article was written by a woman that I know. Her story is so inspiring and encouraging. At her heaviest she weighed over 400 lbs and was at the point of death due to diabetes. In her early 20's she decided she had so much more life to live and began to use food as medicine.

She adopted a plantstrong diet and has managed to shed over 200lbs and heal her body of diabetes. She is proof that all things are possible, food can heal your body and transform your life.

Reflections

On Sunday I had some time to reflect on things in my life. I was really thinking about how much time we spend on negative thoughts. We often put ourselves down because we haven't reached our fitness goals or we have feelings of failure or inadequacy.

What does your mental conversation sound like? Are you abusing yourselves or are you encouraging and uplifting yourself?

Did you know that your mental voice has a very important part to play in achieving your goals? It doesn't matter how many people tell you that you can do something. If you don't believe you can most likely you won't. Even compliments are drowned out by self criticism.

So I have decided to list all the things that I find amazing about myself and the compliments I hear people tell me. That will help build up my inner being and allow me to walk more confidently along this journey. Everyday I will reflect on one thing that is positive about myself.

I will share it on my blog in the hopes that I inspire someone else to do the same. :)

Today's thought:

You are amazing. You have overcame so many adversities and still you manage to smile and hold onto your faith. No matter how many times you have been knocked down..you continue to get back up. You stand for truth and you never compromise what you believe in. You are amazing!!!

Friday and my weekend

Friday I was feeling a little better so I decided to go to the gym since I knew I would be taking the whole weekend off. It was a shoulder and cardio day but I didn't want to go too hard since I had been feeling sick the days prior. I did lift as heavy as I could but took longer rest periods giving myself enough time to recover. I also did about 20 minutes of moderate intensity cardio.

After the gym I went home, took a shower, ate dinner (salad with tofu) and fell asleep watching TV. I woke up in a panic because it was almost 8pm and I had to pick up my daughter at 8:15pm from school...she was watching a school play.

On Saturday I took my daughter to the mall to buy some clothes for her birthday and then we went to eat some lunch at a vegan cafe. I had a taco salad that was super good. It was in a chipotle baked shell and was filled with mock meat, rice and black beans, lettuce, vegan cheese and salsa. I couldn't finish it so I took the rest home and had it for dinner. I also had a vegan cookie sandwich for dessert after lunch.



After lunch we went shopping for some birthday party supplies. We are going to have a small family get together next Saturday to celebrate my daughters birthday. Funny how she is turning 13 but wants a Minnie Mouse themed party.

I am going to attempt at making my first birthday cake with fondant. I have never used it before but I am excited to try and see how I do. :) This is kind of what I am going to aim for.




I made some Minnie ears for her little friend and cousins to wear. I bought plastic headbands, black satin ribbon, pink polka dot ribbon, rhinestones, black cardboard and felt. This is what I came up with. Pretty cute huh?




Sunday I decided to go to church since I hadn't been in a few months. I am happy I went because I needed to be refreshed. I had a lot on my mind and found peace being in such an uplifting atmosphere.

After church my daugther and I went to Sweet Tomatoes for lunch. Then we went grocery shopping and I went home and prepared my food for the week. I made a batch of protein bars, a large container of pico de gallo and baked some tofu for my salads.

I am happy that I have managed to prepare my food for the last 3 weeks. This really helps cut back time in the morning and also encourages me to stay on track and eat healthy.

Well that was my weekend. Hope you had a great one too.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Grrrrr!

I am still feeling a little weird. I didn't work out last night and wasn't really in the mood for food food. I was actually craving cereal for dinner so I went to the store and bought some.

I am not sure what is going on but it might be a little bug I am catching or maybe I am just run down. I am ordering my supplements today to see if that helps and I will try to lay low for the rest of the week.

I really miss the gym so I might just go do some light weight lifting and cardio today. I will take the full weekend off though to relax and recover.

If I continue to feel this way after the weekend I will make a doctors appointment. Maybe I just need to go in for a physical. I haven't had my blood or heart checked in a while.

I have been diagnosed with an irregular heartbeat but the last time the doctor checked me (December 2010) he said my heart was a lot stronger and he could barely hear my murmur.

My sugars were really high prior to me getting on my new healthy lifestyle. That is one of the reasons I decided it was time to get serious about my health. My family has a history of diabetes so I knew I wanted to avoid that.

Anyways I will make sure I am proactive and get checked out soon. Maybe I just need a general physical just to be on the safe side. I really want to go see this amazing doctor that does an extensive hormonal, blood and physical evaluation but medical insurance does not cover him.

I would like to try to save enough money to visit him this year. We will see how it goes. For now I will make sure I am sleeping well, eating enough calories and taking my supplements.

Here is what I ate yesterday:

Meal 1: protein shake (same as always;), 1 c. tofu and hashbrowns
Meal 2: 2 brown rice cakes with 2 tbsp hummus
Meal 3: large spinach and arugula salad with tofu, quinoa and broccoli
Meal 4: bowl of honey o' cereal with banana and soy milk
Meal 5: 3 slices of veggie pizza
Meal 6: 5 protein bars (see recipe)

That was my day. :) Thanks for checking on me.

Homemade Carrot Cake Protein Bars


I made the most amazing homemade carrot cake protein bars last night. They turned out super yummy and are full of nothing but healthy stuff. I hope you try them out and let me know what you think. The recipe was adapted from Jaime Eason's LiveFit program on www.bodybuilding.com/livefit.

Ingredients:

Makes 32 small squares or 16 medium size.
Serving size 4 small squares or 2 medium squares.

2 cups oat flour (I buy Bob's Red Mill at Fresh and Easy for under $4)
2 cups unsweetened applesauce (Fresh and Easy brand $2.99 for 20 oz jar)
2 cups shredded carrots (Fresh and Easy $1.99)
1 ripe medium banana
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tbsp pumpkin pie spice (optional but it makes it takes super yummy.)
1 tsp vanilla
4 scoops vanilla protein powder (I used Plant Fusion protein powder)
2 cups water

Preheat oven to 425 degrees and lightly grease a baking dish. I used a rectangular cake or casserole pan.

1. Mix applesauce, banana, spices, vanilla, protein powder, water and carrots in a food processor. If you don't have a food processor you can mash banana with a fork and mix the ingredients in a bowl by hand. I like my carrots finely shredded so the food processor worked best for me.

2. Combine oat flour, baking soda and baking powder in a separate bowl.

3. Add wet mixture to the flour mixture and mix until all ingredients are combined.

4. Put mixture into greased pan and bake in oven for about 20 minutes or until golden grown. Let cool and then cut into squares. Bars might seem a little mushy when they first come out but will harden up when they cool off. If they seem too mushy bake them for a little while longer.

Keep protein bars in the fridge.

Tip: prepackage serving sizes into zip lock baggies so you have easy grab and go snack bags. :)

Each serving: 235 calories, 35 grams of carbs, 3 grams fat, 16 grams of protein

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Week 5/ Day 31

(I just realized I was ahead of myself and had the days number wrong.)

I am definitely hurting my body and I am feeling it now. Yesterday I did not eat very much during the day and as soon as 3:3opm hit I was sooooo sick. I started getting the chills and my body felt like it was shutting down. I think my sugar must have dropped. This is not good at all so I went home and stuffed my face with 1/2 c quinoa and about 6 oz of baked tofu w/ bbq sauce.

I started to feel a little better but not 100% so I ate an apple and some raw almonds on my way to the gym. I knew I had a hard leg workout so I need to refuel my body and prepare it for the intensity.

It definitely worked because I was able to get through my workout and managed to keep from feeling sick again. When I got home I drank a protein shake w/ protein powder, water, 1/4 c. oats, chia seed, spinach, 1/4 banana and frozen berries.

Later during the night I was supposed to eat another meal but I was not hungry at all. I started to feel the same way so I went downstairs to get a class of sweetened vanilla almond milk. I also grabbed an apple and some raw almonds. Although I wasn't hungry I knew that if I did not eat I would feel sick again or possibly wake up feeling really bad. I tried to make myself eat some tofu and broccoli but couldn't do it. I was not in the mood for food.

If I continue to feel this way I will make an appointment to see the doctor. I think it had more to do with my lack of food and my body just being really tired. I also started my you know what in the late afternoon so that could have been a contributing factor as well.

Here is what I did yesterday and what I ate:
Warm up Elliptical 3 min
Warm up set of leg curls using light weight 2 sets of 30 reps (KILLER!!!!!)
Wide stance barbell squat: 20x15, 2 sets/ 2 sets to failure using 50 lbs...I managed to get about 25 on each set.
Leg press: 135x8, 4 sets
Single leg press: 55x10, 3 sets on each leg
Leg Press Calf Raise: 40x20, 3 sets
Plie Dumbbell Squat: 50x15, 3 sets

Abs: 3 sets of 25 reps: standing twist w/ medicine ball, 3 sets of 12 reps: knee raises and leg raises on roman chair

Food Journal:
Meal 1: protein shake (water, protein powder, 1/4 c oats, 1 tbsp chia seed, 1 cup spinach, 3/4 c frozen strawberries, 1/4 frozen banana)
Meal 2: 2 brown rice cakes w/ 1 tbsp homemade hummus (1 can chickpeas, 2 tbsp black bean dip mix, water)
Meal 3: large salad (2 c. spinach and arugula, 4 oz baked tofu, 1/2 roma tomato, 2 tbsp ACV), blueberry almond milk yogurt
Meal 4: 1/2 c quinoa, 6 oz baked tofu w/ bbq sauce, 1 gala apple and 13 raw almonds
Meal 5: protein shake (same as breakfast)
Meal 6: 4 oz vanilla almond milk, 1 gala apple, 13 raw almonds

That was my day. How did I do?

I am taking today (5/3) off to rest. Since I have been feeling a little rundown I want to prevent injury or sickness. I also have a meeting to attend tonight so I will resume my workouts on Friday. :)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Phase 2- Diet Change Up

Okay so I guess I haven't been paying attention to what I am really supposed to be eating right now. By looking at Phase 2 diet plan I am probably eating way beneath my calories and that is why I am not shedding any weight or seeing real muscle definition.

Here is a break down of what my meal plan should look like. I will be changing it up for the next few weeks and hopefully will start seeing amazing results. I am going to put what they recommend in black and what I will be eating in red. I have to customize it because I don't eat animal protein. :)

Meal 1: 5 egg whites and 1 serving of starch
I will eat: protein shake w/ water, 1/2 c oats w/ almond milk and berries

Meal 2: 2 turkey or chicken muffins or 4 protein bars or small meal option
I will eat: 2 oz hummus w/ 3 rice cakes or 4 protein bars or protein powder w/ almond milk
(Note: protein bars are homemade not store bought. Many store bought brands are loaded with chemicals and resemble a candy bar.)

Meal 3: 6 oz of lean meat, 1 serving starch, unlimited veggies and salad
I will eat: 6 oz of tofu, 4 oz sweet potato, large salad or veggies

(The following meals are where I am slipping up.)
Meal 4: Same as meal 3

Meal 5: 2 turkey muffins or 4 homemade protein bars or small meal option
I will eat: 4 homemade protein bars or protein shake w/ frozen banana, 1 tsbp almond butter and almond milk. (This is considered my dinner meal.)

Meal 6: 5-6 egg whites and unlimited veggies
I will eat: 3 oz tofu w/ steamed veggies

So I will be going shopping and changing up my diet. It seems like lots of food but I guess my body needs it so I will do what I am told. More food....more change....I hope! :)

In phase 2 I will be lifting weights 6 days a week and doing moderate cardio 4 days a week. That explains all the food. RIGHT?

Week 5....Day 30

I have been so tired I really hope to be able to buy my supplements this week. I really need the vitamins and my amino acids to help me recover from my workouts.

I had a good workout yesterday. Of course I couldn't print out my workout again because the website was down but I managed to get through my own chest and bicep workout.

Here is what I did:
Warm up Treadmill 10 min @ 3.8 mph
Incline Dumbbell Chest Press 25x10, 1 set/ 30x10, 2 sets
Dumbbell Chest Flye 20x10, 3 sets (I kind of hurt my shoulder here. I try not to use such heavy weight since the weight moves far from the shoulder joint.)
Dumbbell Chest Pullover 25x10, 3 sets
Hammer Curl (weird barbell:) 15x10, 3 sets
Overhead Cable Curls 15x12, 3 sets (single arm)
Cable Curls 30x12, 3 sets
Alternating Dumbbell Curls 20x9, 15x3, 2 sets/ 15x12, 1 set

Abs circuits:
I jump roped for 60 jumps in between each ab exercise, I did 2 sets of each: side plank with side crunch, seated side to side twist w/ medicine ball, basic crunch with medicine ball, standing side to side twist with medicine ball, basic crunch with side crunch, side crunch.

My abs exercises are pretty all over the place. I like to do a bunch of different moves since I hate working abs. My abs also get worked while I am lifting so I like that as well.

Elliptical 20 minutes, different inclines and resistance

My food was good as well. I ate very clean and didn't cheat. :)

Meal 1: protein shake (same as yesterday)
Meal 2: same as yesterday
Mea1 3: same salad as yesterday but I didn't a yogurt.
Meal 4: gala apple w/ 1 tbsp raw almonds, 1/2 baked flauta w/ pico de gallo
Meal 5: large salad (spinach and arugula, cucumber, 3 strawberries, pico de gallo, 1/4 c. quinoa, 4 oz baked tofu, 3 slices of avocado, drizzled with ACV)
Snack: decaffeinated chocolate tea w/ vanilla almond milk :0)

Thanks for checking on me and keeping me accountable! :)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Week 5, Day 29

This is my second time writing this post because the first one got deleted. BOOOOO! So I am going to skip all the stories I told and just give you the good stuff.

I forgot to print out my workout routine for Monday so I had to make up my own workout. Here is what I did:

Back and Triceps:
Wide lat pull down 60x10, 1 set/ 70x10, 2 sets
Single arm dumbbell row 25x10, 3 sets (each side)
Standing low pulley cable row 80x10, 3 sets
Narrow grip cable lat pull down 50x10, 3 sets
Bent over dumbbell flyes 10x10, 3 sets
Tricep press downs 80x10, 3 sets
Superset:
Tricep extensions rope attachment 30x10, 3 sets
Single arm tricep Extensions 15x10, 3 sets
Superset: (for a last little tricep burn)
Skullcrushers w/ z bar 10x10, 2 sets
Narrow chestpress w/ z bar 10x10, 2 sets

Food:
Meal 1: protein shake (protein, water, frozen berries, 1/4 banana, 1/4 c oats, chia seed, spinach)
Meal 2: 2 brown rice cakes w/ 1 tbsp hummus (homemade)
Meal 3: salad (spinach and arugula, avacado, tofu, cucumber, pico de gallo, w/ ACV), strawberry almondmilk yogurt.
I found these at Fresh and Easy and was super happy to find out that they taste super yummy and have no artificial sweetners. They are sweetened with fruit only. :) My favorite flavor is the coconut one.

Meal 4: 1 gala apple w/ 1 tbsp raw almonds (pre workout)
Meal 5: 1 scoop protein powder w/ 8 oz water (post workout)
Meal 6: large salad (same as lunch but with 3 sliced strawberries and no cucumber) and 1 baked flauta

late night snack: 5 pieces of baked tofu

Thanks for checking on me and keeping me accountable. :) I am trying! :)