Monday, November 30, 2009

My virtual models!

I went to and created these for myself.

Me now:

Me at goal:
Fun! I also joined in on another challenge for December so I have a group to keep me accountable. Excellent! Today is going well. I've tracked my food and I have about 650 calories left to meet my goal for the day. My only exercise was walking to and from school, but I'm feeling healthier today than yesterday, so I'm sure the workouts will be up and running in no time.

Have a healthy night!


I've thought about things a bit, and I have come up with goals for myself.

Goal #1: Reach 157 pounds by the end of 2009
Goal #2: Goal Weight of 142 pounds

Another step in the process was to visualize myself at the goal so I can begin to expect that it will happen, instead of just wishing it would like I've always done. I found this website, although I'm not quite sure I have a photo that works well for this exercise. I found something on Fitness Magazine's website once too, so I think I'll go searching for that. For now though, I have a short term goal and a long term goal. That's progress!

So, now what I am doing to reach the short term goal? First, I've got to be logging my food. It's just not possible for me right now to get by without logging. I will of course be exercising, although not today because I have a ripping cold. So I'll have to take it easy and rely on food choices today. And rest so I get better!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Do you want it? Or do you expect it to happen?

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Mine was very nice. Headed home to see my family and had some fabulous quality time with everyone. I didn't work out on Thursday because we went into NYC to watch the parade, but I got in a long walk and some lunges, squats, and abs on Friday. Today I did a 30+ minute interval workout with some Kenpo X moves, biceps, back, and shoulders. It was around 450 calories burned. I'll take it! I'm moving this week so I am now surrounded by a sea of boxes and very little to eat or to exercise with.

Over the last few days, I signed up for a daily motivational e-mail called the PEERtrainer (by Jackie Wicks... you can go here to find it). I came across when I googled the Fat Smash Diet, which is actually one of my favorite ways to eat. It's pretty similar to the way the eating plan is set up for P90X. Anyway, the tip I received in the mail a couple days ago had this:

"One generally gets what the expect, not just what they want."

That has got me thinking... do I expect to reach a goal weight? Or do I want to reach a goal weight? Do I even know what that goal weight is? I think I do well in that I exercise on a regular basis, but I do not do well in that I haven't set concrete goals and I don't actually expect things to happen. I just sort of hope for it... and we all know that doesn't work! I think I feel like exercise is enough, but there's so much more than that! Now, I'm not saying I workout and eat like crazy, but if I put in as much effort with what I eat as with what activity I do, I'd be doing so much better! I'm going to take some time over the next couple days to do a few things that will get me on track:

  1. Set a concrete goal weight for myself.
  2. Visualize and believe that I can reach that goal.
  3. Set up a series of smaller goals that will allow me to work toward the final goal I have set.
I hope it works!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you have a wonderful day! I will be heading to my parents' house today and then we'll be off to NYC for the day tomorrow to see the parade. Fun! We haven't decided where we're going to eat yet, but plenty of places are open in NYC on Thursday. We're going to do an official Thanksgiving dinner on Friday. My plan for my health for the weekend is to eat more veggies on the side and to exercise as much as possible!

Speaking of exercise... today I'm doing a yoga routine from the November Fitness Magazine. It was written by a woman named Kristin McGee, who just so happens to be engaged to one of my classmates. It looks great! It's a bit cardio because of some flow moves, but then there are slower moves for strengthening. I'll let you know how it goes!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

End of Challenge and Beginning of the Next One!

Only a couple days left in this challenge. I'll give myself a B+ for this one. I did well for the most part, but I skipped two days of workouts! I got back on track yesterday though. I did a 22 minute high intensity circuit in my living room before school. It went something like this:

  • 5 min warmup using marching in place, jogging in place, jumping jacks, and other P90X/Insanity warmup moves
  • pushups to exhaustion
  • 1 min of high intensity cardio like Heismans, 1-2-3 Heismans, jump squats, Mary Katherine lunges
  • bicep curls to exhaustion
  • 1 min of high intensity cardio
  • bent over rows to exhaustion
  • 1 min of high intensity cardio
  • tricep pushups to exhaustion
  • 1 min of high intensity cardio
  • overhead shoulder press to exhaustion
  • 1 min of high intensity cardio
  • bicycle abs to exhaustion
  • 1 min of high intensity cardio
  • cool down and stretch!
It works well for me when I squeeze those workouts in. I burned around 300 calories and I save a lot of time. I walked to school and back then, and that totals around 500-600 calories too. All in all a good day!

Today I promised myself I would get out of bed to go jogging. I am planning to do a half marathon in May, and I need to start my base building now. I did it! Woo hoo! It was hard to motivate because it was raining, but I did it! I was out there for 35 min and burned around 585 calories. Excellent!

Now on to my next challenge... I have done okay this fall by losing ~8 pounds of the weight I gained while I was traveling for work this summer. I really only have about 2 left, but I was trying to lose weight before. I'm really at a point where I'd like to lose 20 pounds, so my challenge for the rest of the year (ie the month of December) is to lose 5 pounds. That would bring me down to 157. Then I'll make myself a new challenge come January so I have defined, quantifiable goals.

Have a wonderfully healthy day!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Long Weekend

It felt like quite a long weekend at least! I am moving on November 29, and I did some packing this weekend. I hate it! Not only is there so much more to do, but it cut into my workouts. I didn't do an official workout on Saturday or Sunday. I guess I fell off the Challenge Wagon this weekend! I don't have much time this morning, but I plan to do at least a 20 minute circuit workout before I get ready for school. Most of my food is gone and my workout gear is packed, so I'm going to be a little off for the next two weeks. I'll do my best!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Day 4 of 10 Day Challenge

Hmmm, so today's plan might be thrown slightly off. I have an appointment to have the headlights on my car replaced (one of the bulbs went out), and I decided to just wait for it. After that, I was going to head home and do P90X Arms and Ab Ripper X before a meeting at 12. Now, it seems as though my appointment is going to go long because they're busy... so what to do now?


I'll squeeze it in sometime I guess! If all else fails, I'll walk to school and get in my 300 calories burned there. Plus the walk home will give me even more!

My meal plan for the day is a turkey sandwich for lunch and some chicken for dinner. I have tomato sauce so I think I'll just cook the chicken in a pan and then put it in the tomato sauce. I'll serve it over Barilla Plus pasta, which is pretty high in the protein category. I also bought myself some Greek yogurt the other day so I can mix it with pumpkin puree and some agave nectar. That idea came from Chalene's twitter page... I hope I like it!

Have a healthy day!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Challenge Day 3

Day 3 of the challenge is going well so far! My workout today will be cardio only, and I have a dance class at 6 PM for that. Tomorrow I definitely want to do another P90X workout! I understand why I loved it so much... I'm sore and it feels great! I'm going to stick with P90X as much as possible to the end of the year. It is like an old friend I haven't seen in a while and missed so much!

Today's food will be leftovers. I actually made my shrimp in lemon juice and a little olive oil with some Italian seasonings. It was so good! Lemon juice makes everything taste better! Yum! I'm going to make sure I have whole lemons on hand all the time. I made some brown and wild rice on the side. Good stuff!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Chest and Back, P90X

So that's a picture of the beautifully challenging divebomber pushup. Well, at least it's the first step in the divebomber pushup. Today I did P90X Chest and Back, and I forgot how crazy those little guys are! I have obviously lost some strength since I had my rough summer plus just doing Insanity lately. I'm so happy I did some P90X again today! It was DIFFICULT and FABULOUS all at the same time!

The 10 Day Challenge is going well. I had a bit of a headache yesterday so I was kind of sluggish, which led me to just walk for exercise. It ended up being 500-600 calories total though, so not too bad for a lazy day. I had some turkey chili for dinner and relaxed after that until I fell asleep on the couch. I am much better today!

My plan for today is to walk to school so I get in some extra calorie burn. I have some frozen shrimp defrosting, and I'm going to cook that in some tomato sauce for dinner. I don't have any pasta so I won't be eating that with the shrimp. I might make brown rice instead or just make some other veggies so I have a bunch of veggies to eat with the shrimp. We'll see!

Back to doing work around the house... fun fun!

Monday, November 16, 2009

10 Day Challenge!

Another beachbody enthusiast (and coach actually) has decided to do a 10 day challenge to get through the last few days before Thanksgiving. The challenge is to exercise everyday and eat clean... not too difficult, right? I've decided to join in because this short term goal is just what I need! In fact, I think short term goals are going to be the key to getting through the holiday season. If you want to read more, go here:

We all know the holidays are hard, and workouts and focus are what you need to get through. I'm going to start with this 10 day challenge and work my way through the holidays with more challenges like this.

I was quite excited to make my way back to the P90X world this weekend with some legs. OMG, my legs are sore! I LOVE IT!!! I'm going to try to motivate to do Chest and Back tonight when I get home from school. If for some reason I don't have enough time to devote to it, I will do a modified version of it by following the book.

My modified versions of workouts went really well last week. With my "fly by the seat of my pants" structure, I was able to burn 2946 calories!!!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

How do you choose your workouts?

I was thinking today as I was choosing my workout that I sometimes have no rhyme or reason to what workout I do. I can definitely see how there could be problems with that approach. Research has shown that people who have a plan to reach their goals are much more likely to reach their goals. That's why fitness experts suggest having concrete goals like:

  • I will eat 1600 calories per day this week.
  • I will exercise for 45 minutes per day Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.
  • I will lose 1 pound per week.
You get the picture! For some reason, concrete, quantifiable goals help you reach your goals. If they aren't working, you can always change them, but it really helps to define (and even write down) your goals.

So this brings me to my state of mind recently... I wrote about how busy I've been, and that makes it hard to workout. What I find, during times like this, that putting too much pressure on myself actually makes me crater. So what I've been doing is leaving things completely undefined, and then I can figure out what I'm in the mood for that day. The only thing I've done is committed that I will do some physical activity everyday. That has led me to walking one day, doing a hybrid P90X-Insanity (short) workout, and also doing some true P90X today.

It's working for me, so for now I'll stick with it! I do want to read more about this whole goal setting stuff though because I think that a lot of what holds me back from reaching my goal weight is not setting concrete goals and not actually (deep down) believing I can do it. Hmmm....

Today's workout was legs from P90X... OMG! I haven't done some of this stuff in a while and I can tell! My quads were definitely feeling it, and I have a feeling I'll have a nice little bit of soreness tomorrow. Love that feeling because then I know I worked!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Busy day workout

Today was/is another busy day for me, so I did what is now becoming a "Busy Day Workout" for me. I start off with five minutes of cardio a la INSANITY to warmup. Most of the time I used Shaun T's moves, like jogging in place, jumping jacks, Heismans, etc. For some reason, I absolutely love the Heisman! Then I did a back a bicep routine, inspired some by P90X. I did about a minute per exercise of the strength move followed by a minute of intense cardio (also from INSANITY or P90X plyo). It worked out really well! I only had 20-ish minutes, and I finished up with some sun salutations at the end which brought me to 25 minutes. Wonderful way to start the day! I'm enjoying the creativity when I need it, although I'm itching for some P90X workouts. I saw a pic of me in May and I think my biceps have gotten smaller... not good! Must get back to my P90X muscles!

Monday, November 9, 2009

What do you do when you're sooooo busy?

OMG, I am so busy right now! I actually took a much needed mental break this past weekend and took my time to do more personal/family things than school things. Now I'm so busy! It is going to be a hectic week! So that is what led me to think to myself... what do I do when I'm so busy? How do I fit in my workouts, my school work, my family/friends, and not go totally insane?

Tactic #1: Make a list! I just made a list of everything I need to get done for school through Thursday so I can check it off when I'm done. There's something satisfying about checking things off and knowing you're accomplishing something.
Tactic #2: Don't overextend myself! That means, don't commit to too many social events, don't commit to 2 hours of working out per week. Don't overcommit! I know a lot of us have an issue with this one, and I think it puts a lot of undue stress on you if you aren't honest with yourself about how much you can handle.
Tactic #3: Stay focused! Today, that has meant making my list so I can be more focused. I've got to keep myself focused and motivated to stick to my schedule or I won't get it all done!

So what does all this mean for workouts and food? For one, I may have to be extra creative this week. Today, I walked to school with my backpack filled with stuff, and I burned 350 calories. Done, and done! I'd normally do more, but I just don't have time! If I only have 20 minutes, then I better make it a good 20 minutes with some interval work inspired by all I learned from P90X and INSANITY. As for food, convenience does not necessarily equal fattening foods. Last week I made turkey chili, and I'm still finishing it off. When I'm really busy, I'll make myself a turkey sandwich on whole wheat or a baked chicken breast with frozen veggies. Whatever it takes, right, even if it isn't exciting?!?!

Oh, right, and I can't forget to sleep. Ahhh!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

It's yoga week!

I decided that since I was experiencing some hip pain which then sort of turned into low back pain that I am making this week YOGA WEEK! I started on Sunday with a 45 minute yoga routine that was on Exercise TV On Demand. I did a shorter one yesterday morning that was a little too beginner for me. I did appreciate the extra explanations of postures, etc. I'm going to try out a new one tonight. My only gripe with the workouts is that I find they're trying to be a little too heavy on the cardio and not so heavy on the mental side of yoga. I'm actually looking for yoga... not some beast of a workout that makes me sweat and burn killer calories. No doubt I love those kind of workouts sometimes... well most of the time. But this week is all about taking things easy and stretching out.

Will keep you posted on how some of these other yoga workouts go... Exercise TV should be putting some new ones on there tomorrow!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Pumpkin Treats!

Since I've been reading up on anti-inflammatory foods, I've been trying to add more of them to my diet. Some things are easy, like reducing/eliminating sugar and moving to Stevia or agave nectar. In other cases, you have to get a bit more creative. Being that Halloween just ended, I figured I'd write a little bit about the wonderful pumpkin and how I use it for more than just desserts.

First of all, pumpkins are jam packed with lots of good nutrients, so it will be hard to list them all and why we should all be eating more pumpkin. The orange color comes from an abundance of carotenoids, which help to neutralize free radicals in the body. Free radicals wreak havoc in the body actually, and they can cause damage to regular healthy cells. Pumpkins have lots of iron, zinc, and fiber as well. I've decided to try using pumpkin year round since it has such great health benefits.

Today I'm going to be making a pumpkin chili. Sounds kind of odd, but I've done it before and it's yummy! The pumpkin tends to thicken the chili so it feels much heartier. Here's the plan:

2 cans Rotel tomatoes (I like the spice!)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 pound ground turkey breast
chopped carrots (makes a nice crunch)
chopped celery (also great for crunch)
1 can black beans
1 can kidney beans
chili powder to taste
cumin to taste

If you couldn't tell, I don't use recipes. I just use ingredients I like and figure out how to make it work. I have a feeling I'll need some veggie broth to thin out the chili a little. I could also add some tomato sauce if I want some more tomato flavor. If I had onions, I'd be throwing those in as well, but I am unfortunately all out. In any case, the key is using pumpkin for more than just pie! There's tons of recipes out there on the internet for pumpkin chili. Try it out!