Tag Archives: healthy-living

taking care of me

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August has already been quite the eventful month. I decided to look into a part time job. If you are counting, this makes 3 outside of the house jobs.

  • teaching
  • cleaning, tourist changeovers
  • server, Applebee’s

And don’t forget:

  • mom to human child
  • mom to furbabies
  • wife
  • band booster secretary
  • band mom
  • and I am sure I am missing some…

I have set out to start taking better care of Jen, (no, I will not be speaking any further in the 3rd person….it s just plain weird)

I have walked every day since July 7th. This is a HUGE accomplishment for me. I did not set out to walk every day for 30+ days. But once I hit day 16 or so, I felt like I could do anything!! And, I figured I could set a goal of continuing the streak until I started back in school September 2nd. At first I kept this goal a secret. I didn’t want to jinx myself. I kept going. Adding one day at a time.

To make this goal a reality, I am having to change the way I speak to myself and out loud. I talk about wanting to get my walk in and not how I “need” to walk. I want to continue my walking streak and as long as I think about it as something I want to do then I will keep on keepin’ on. Some days are hard, not gonna lie. I tell myself to just start moving. I can walk one mile no matter what!!

Two weeks ago, my Q and I started the PiYo program. We set out with the intentions to follow the program exactly the way it is written out on the calendar which was provided. Week one we rocked. Week two took a few twists. Taking on a new job where I am on my feet the whole time changed my thoughts on working out just a bit. I want to do every piyo workout. More importantly, I want to do every piyo workout without injury. That means I must listen to my body and not that tiny voice of guilt from not doing it. Last week, I took one rest day and then doubled up the next day and that was great!! The day I doubled up, I felt strong and ready to tackle it all. The day before when I chose a rest, I was tired and my legs felt tired and heavy.

And then there was Sunday. On Sundays I clean in the mornings but this Sunday, I also was scheduled for a training shift at AppleBee’s (AB) from 5-10pm. Did I mention this was all the night before Q started band camp?!? In between cleaning and showering for AB, I walked one mile in my bedroom. I took that walk low and slow…I use my Leslie Sansone videos but to keep it low, I don’t use the normal intensity. I keep the kicks and knees lower. I wanted to walk to keep my streak alive but I knew I would be on my feet for 5 hours. Keeping it low allowed me to walk and to stretch my legs a bit.

I am learning I can walk every day. I can do the PiYo workouts. I can work a physical job. I can do it all. I think walking every day has been good for me. I am successful in  this goal and I am starting to feel my legs responding. PiYo is hard for me but I modify and I do my best and I cannot wait to see what 8 weeks of this looks and feels like. I am looking forward to the physical changes, I am already noticing the mental benefits of both of my fitness endeavors.

I have walked late at night to get it in. I walked last night at 9:30. It is a wonderful benefit of walk at home workouts….I don’t have to worry about heat, humidity, rain, bugs, dark, etc. Even on the days I have walked late, I have felt like such a rockstar for getting in my walk. I feel like I am doing this great thing for my body. I am now realizing, it is not just my body that is happy for my daily walks!!

My new fitness endeavors are new ways to take care of me!

WOW!

 

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I like pi….yo

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I splurged a bit and bought myself a new workout program.

PiYo.  (click on the word for more information) Pilates, Yoga intensified but still low impact. Watch this video for a quick visual on what is PiYo.

My facebook feed is filled with BeachBody coaches and I have been seeing PiYo craziness for a couple of months. I watched videos, and read status updates of wow. I finally jumped on the bandwagon. One of my bloggy/twitter/facebook friends is a beachbody coach and since I have known her the longest, I asked her like a million questions. Nanci made me feel very comfortable about giving this program a try.

I ordered the program and tried to put it out my head until it arrived.

And then it arrived. And I saw the calendar. There are 3 DVDs with (I think) 8 different workouts. They provide you with an 8-week schedule. Six days a week. I must admit, I was a bit intimidated looking at 8 weeks all scheduled out on a calendar.

I showed my Q the trailer video on youtube and the calendar. She decided to workout and do this program with me. For real, she even cleaned her room to make enough space for us to PiYo. AND, we finished week 1, started week 2 and her room is still clean-ish.

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Do you have any idea what an absolute humbling experience it is to workout with a fifteen year old?!?

My Q is a typical teenager. She spends way too much time on her bed watching, facebooking, or reading. More often than not, she is reading and this mama who also happens to be an English teacher almost never interrupts her family when they are reading. Q, however, takes after her mama and devours books. She hates to put the book (or iPad) down until she is done.

I am out of shape and getting back to my groove. I struggle through the workouts. And yes, they are around 20-40 minutes and I die. I sweat. I huff, I puff. I curse Chalene Johnson with her perkiness and perfect blond hair. Q just rolls through and she hardly sweats. The day after our workouts, I am tired and Q not so much.

Humbling!

I made a hashtag #meandmyQ – even when she frustrates me with her lack of sweat, I absolutely love working out with her. I am so brutally honest when we workout. “This sucks” “ooh, I like this one” “B***ch” “This lady is crazy” “She wants me to do what” “My belly gets in the way, I have to adjust this pose”  I have worked out without a shirt on, just in a sports bra. I fall over because my balance sort of totally sucks.

Yet, I keep pushing on. I have given up and walked away from too many “hard” things but I have also pushed through serious “hard” things. PiYo is hard but fun. Every time I do a workout, I am surprised when we get to the last five minutes. It sneaks up on me. So far, that last five minutes has caught me off guard every single time.

Working out with Q is pretty awesome. We have a calendar to know what to do on what day, but more than that we have to be accountable to each other. I can’t bluff her with excuses. And even when I am so not in the mood for working out or my joints are achy and I just want to be lazy, I don’t want to give my Q any of those excuses.

Who knew this was all going to happen when I decided to try something new?!?

april goals

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I wrote out some goals and intentions in January. I even claimed a word for the year.
Commitment.
I made a commitment to myself. To be the best me I can be.

I  strive to work on me. To work through some of the demons in my head, to hear what is going on in there, to feel what is going on in there. It has been an emotional roller coaster these past three months. If I am being honest, I have been on an emotional roller coaster for quite some time and I am just now realizing I need to deal with it.
Some of my newish activities have been helping me deal with the emotions of life, the emotions of living, and the emotions of finding my happy place. and then there’s that whole concept of trusting myself and changing course when time calls for it. I keep working at it.I am a work in progress and to that end, I have decided to set a few goals for April. It is time I actually came up with a plan and set reasonable and realistic goals that actually work towards something more sustainable…

  1. #yogaaday….all 30 poses posted on IG (even if its once every few days, whatever)
  2. 10 yoga classes (if not at an actual class, a 30 minute video counts)
  3. Complete stage 1 of NROLFW
  4. 2-5 hours of BTE (bike, treadmill, or elliptical) each week.
  5. One 5k for time each week
  6. Read one actual book each week
  7. No scale til May 1
  8. find my paleo/primal balance (or: stick to the foods I know make my belly happyme feel good, not gross)
  9. one more…have fun. Play more. Play.

 

That’s enough. That’s more than I intended but I think they can stay. I put a focus on activities I enjoy. If I am focusing on what makes me happy and doing what I enjoy, it stands to reason, I will be happier and enjoy life just that much more!

So bring on April.

Let’s see just how awesome April turns out!!

Perfect day for yoga

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I went to my 3rd (out of 7) Wednesday YIN yoga class. I have been trying to blog about this new class but I haven’t had the words. But after class the other day, I needed to work through some of my feelings and thoughts about and associated with this class.Wednesday was a beautiful, sunny day…still cold and a lot tad windy but beautiful. Even the drive to class was beautiful. Every song that came on the radio was upbeat and singalongable and I didn’t hit any traffic snags. The drive relaxed me and pumped me up all at the same time.

I couldn’t wait for class.

Stevee, yoga instructor, started the class with a few questions:

Why are you here? Has your reason changed?

If you know me, you know I’m sort of loud and outgoing and upbeat. I put on a good show of confidence but I have many bouts of self doubt and insecurity. Especially around strangers. And even more especially when I am truly honest with my feelings and thoughts and emotions…in front of strangers or coworkers. I wait to hear what others say and share before I let my all out loud.

When Stevee asked these questions I was the first to volunteer. I blurted out my yoga “story” which is not much of a story but I’ll bullet point it here anyway.
*my first yoga experience was about 4 years ago. I hated it. In fact, yoga pisses me off. I didn’t know how and couldn’t turn my brain off. Plus, I had no balance. I made it thru 4 classes and that was it.
*knee and ankle surgery. Lots of physical therapy.
*last year when I had a gym membership, I tried a yoga class again. This class was intense but the instructor always repeated, “listen to your body,” “this is a judgement free zone,” and “do not compare yourself to your neighbor, eyes on your mat.” I didn’t go to many classes but but I did discover I could silence my brain chatter. I could listen to my body.
*I discovered how good downward dog felt on my poor achy calf (remember that surgeries leg). However, I discovered DWD too late because my other gym activities left me with a bummed calf.
*I rested my calf. I got lazy. I got bummed. I got downright depressed.
*I set huge goals that now scare the bejeebus out of me.
*I came across this free yoga class at my college. The instructor hooked me in from her first hello. I signed up for Stevee’s emails and within a week or so, I had an invitation to her upcoming class. I had never heard if yin yoga but the description sounded like something I would be into.
*when I started this class, I wanted to work on my mind-body connection but I wanted to work that connective tissue to continue to heal, and increase flexibility and mobility, ankle which has an incredible amount of scar tissue. I wanted help with my running, because of that big, scary goal.
*my reasons for continuing this class is the emotional attachment to that hour on the mat. I sound like a yogi My body as much as my mind as much as my soul need my hour on Wednesday. I almost cannot give you the words for how much I feel during yin.
*then Stevee asked if I was using it off the mat. And I truly believe that in this class I am learning to be mindful, on and off my mar. I still have to remind myself to listen and to trust myself but I am more mindful off my mat.

 

I know I rambled, and I didn’t get into this much detail in class but I hit the highlights. When I was finished talking, I was all choked up. I didn’t actually cry, i didn’t hold tears in I just didn’t actually cry. We went around the room and I tried to listen but I was very zoned into not own head. Not in a distracted, what’s on my to do list sorta way but in a deep thought zone. It was a weird zone-out because I was still very aware of the conversations around me as my classmates shared their yoga stories and what brought them to this class.

Class was awesome….just the right combination of poses and conversation. I am soaking in this new knowledge. Yin yoga is different than any other yoga class I have ever taken or any dvd I have ever followed along with. In Yin you hold poses for 3-5 minutes and you use props – blocks and straps and blankets to assist in the poses. The point of the poses is not to engage all your muscles while you hold a crazy pose, instead its actually the opposite. In Yin, you sort of turn to mush in the poses. Stevee likens it to acupuncture without the needles. It reminds me of that “hurt so good” feeling you get when you foam roll after a 10-miler. I am truly learning what my body likes and needs.

And I think I am falling in love with my body. And yoga.

It was the perfect day for yoga.

The ride home from class was just as beautiful, just as perfect. I can’t remember what was on the radio. I was too busy enjoying the scenery.
See for yourself….

imagejust a cell-phone picture but I needed to get a picture of those clouds over the bay at sunset.

It was an accident

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I stopped weighing in.

I stopped stepping on the scale.

I didn’t do it on purpose.

I think I quite like it.

Every Wednesday morning in January and February the first thing (after the normal stretch, potty, turn coffee on routine) I did was step on the scale. I teamed up with my friend, Ann, for a good old-fashioned Shrinking Jeans challenge so there was a weekly weigh in. The week after the challenge ended, I completely lost track of days that week and didn’t realize I had even missed weigh in or that it was Wednesday until my fourth class.

Side note: did you know today is March 20th?!?

Somehow, that one missed weigh in became two and today makes three. And I think I am going to continue this streak. I don’t want the scale to be important. And it was getting to be a too important piece in my puzzle. Actually not so much the scale but weight loss (or lack of) the scale represents.

I’ve come to realize I want so much more than weight loss. I want to eat foods that make me feel good. I’m still battling some belly issues but some issues have been resolved as long as I stay away from wheat and excessive sugar, especially the two together. I want to move my body comfortably during yoga…hell, I want to be comfortable during any physical activity. I want things that have no translation into a number on the scale. I have wanted to ditch the scale, wanted to not care about the scale but never quite pulled it off. I usually convince myself I need to know that number. I need to make sure I’m doing “right” and right means losing weight.

But why do I feel this need to lose weight?!?

The thing is, I just want my clothes to fit better. Like they did prior to my injuries and surgeries. That’s it. I want to feel confident in anything I wear.

Turns out, when I am physically active I feel much more confident in myself.

This has NOTHING to do with how much I weigh.

Craziness!!

I am finding a rhythm with the gym and working out. I LOVE going to the gym and doing my thing. I love the way I feel when I am all sweaty and gross after a good gym session.

So for now, I am staying away from the scale and focusing on true measures of health and fitness.

A very happy accident!

working my workouts

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Last week, right before we lost an hour on the clock, I was convinced I HAD to start morning workouts. Have I ever told you all how much I dislike the morning and my alarm clock. Seriously, if I had my way, I would wake up on my own every day. I’m pretty sure I would wake up 7:30ish when the sun starts poking through my windows. So, last Monday when the alarm went off at 5AM I was painfully reminded of just how much I dislike mornings. Instead, I want to stay snuggled in my warm blankets with my dog and husband snoring on either side of me.  AND if it happens to be raining…well then, all bets are off!! Well, I decided Monday morning when I hit the snooze on a way too early alarm clock, if I can’t get my ass to the gym every day after school then I will have to do morning workouts. Let’s see how I did…. image   export (1)

My Polar monitor gives me weekly goals to reach, last week I shattered those goals!!! I rewarded myself with a nice bubble foot bath while watching The Vikings.

Here are my predictions for next week….

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What are your workout predictions for the week??

rough week, reset needed

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I have had a ROUGH week!

Q is sick! Again! She has been home from school all week!!

AJ has a tooth infection and has been miserable at home all week.

My car sputtered to a stop last Saturday and has not run since.

All this plus hormones and a medical “thing” for me on Thursday.

It’s been a crazy and rough week!

I have not yoga’d or exercised the way I would like. My family needed me. I needed to take care of them, the house and myself. Unfortunately, I haven’t quite figured out how to do it all. Instead of beating myself up for being human, I am trying something new!

I am hitting the reset button.

 

 

My goals have to changed. I still want to improve my yoga. I still want to complete a marathon in November. I still want to lose weight and find my happy place with food and my weight.

I just had a bit of an obstacle course this week. I am sure I could have handled it all better and found a way to get my workouts and yoga but I did not.

Instead of getting caught up in what I didn’t do, what I didn’t get done and why I am choosing to move on.

Life happened and I am hitting a reset button!!

But what does that mean?!?

My reset starts today and I will focus on a few things that will help me get to my goals. I will reevaluate this list in March! For now, I will:

  • complete 28 days of daily yoga.
  • get caught up, and continue #YogaADay pics
  • strive to earn a Trophy on my Polar every week
  • walk/run on the treadmill or outside for 30 minutes, 3 times each week
  • use gorilla app every other day.

 

Other than a few splurges, I have continued my good eating habits. January was amazing and I really loved following the #Whole30 guidelines. While Whole30 was very strict, and I don’t plan on continuing SO strict, but I like the way I feel so I will continue with MANY of those good habits. The last two days were WAY OFF (not bad but off due to a medical procedure) but today (remember I hit that reset button) I am back to making good for me food choices.

 

This IS PROGRESS for me!! Normally, I would say, “screw it!! you already screwed up so you might as well eat whatever you want!!”  PROGRESS is setting the RESET button!

How do you handle obstacles? Day of no exercise? Days of bad eating?

Do you need to hit the RESET button?