Monday, April 29, 2013

My First Challenge : May's Cardio Abs with Debbie Reichert!

Well, April is coming to a close, and May is almost upon us.

I've been following Debbie Reichert's fitness on her FACEBOOK, and her BLOG. She is a mother and fitness instructor, and just has an overall healthy outlook on life and health!

Every month, she does a fitness challenge. I did not join her "crew" until the middle of March, so I missed out on the beginning of the year, and just wasn't ready for her challenges in March or April. However, I think I'm going to kick May's ass!

The challenge this month?!?

Cardio Abs!

That's right! It's going to be a whole month of mountain climbers, burpees, planks, and everything that I could possibly think of as torture! (Debbie if you end up reading this- I look forward to the PAIN!)

So, before I share her challenge, let me do the obligatory linkies:

(BTW- I am endorsing Debbie on my own, I'm not being paid nor recruited on her behalf.)

So, here's the challenge:

It's going to be loads of fun.

Wait... fun?

No, probably not fun. But this is going back to a saying I've been using frequently....

So, tomorrow brings me a birthday... and I will officially be "closer to 30" instead of just in "my mid-20's". I'm not excited! But, tonight will bring dinner with some of my family, and more family on Wednesday. Wednesday will also mark Day 1 of this challenge! Be on the look-out, I will be adding in an additional spot on my Saturday wrap-ups for this May Cardio Abs challenge!

Good luck!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

S-A-TUR-DAY- NIGHT! [Wrap up]

Fitness for the week:

Sunday - Nada. Johnny was not teaching today so I
took the day off. I regret not going, but I got to spend
some time with my husband :)

Monday - Big Fat Nada again! I am disappointed I could hardly
finish Day 2 of Week 5 last week that I'm just feeling lazy.

Tuesday - I mowed our lawn. This may seem like a small thing, but it takes me over an hour, plus there are slopes and hills and it was pretty taxing on my body... and my hands! In the words of George Harrison, "I've got blisters on me fingers!"
(70 minutes, Max HR 168, Avg HR 14, 277 Cal Burned, 11.9g Fat Burned)

Then, later that night, I went to a "dance revolution" class at the gym. I am probably not going back to this class ever again. The instructor was unprepared to say the least, and the entire hour was spent repeating 4 songs and learning how to line dance. Oh yes, I said line dance. As in, slow methodic moves that barely break you in a sweat. UGH

(1 Hour, Max HR 160, Avg HR 117, 260 Cal Burned, 15.1g Fat Burned)

Wednesday - I went to a "dance fusion" class tonight. Different name, different instructor
She kicked my ass! My thighs and lower body are so sore today! But, I feel GREAT!
Thanks Missy, you did an AWESOME JOB!

(50 minutes, Max HR 171, Avg HR 19, 295 Cal Burned, 12.4g Fat Burned)

Thursday - Home time Zumba! I added a bunch of zumba songs that the routines
matched Johnny and Emily's pretty good (most are like 95% the same!) Then I used our fancy TV that has a YouTube App and I played them. It had an hour's worth of songs
but only played about 48 minutes.... so... here's my stats!

(50min, Max HR 179, Avg HR 150, 278 Cal Burned, 10.6g Fat Burned)

Friday - Biggest Loser Intermediate Workout #2
  • Warm up - 5min
  • Upper Body
    • Hammer Curls, Triceps Kickbacks, Dead Lifts, Chest Presses, T-Raises, Bent-Over Rows
      • 10 Reps each
  • Core Exercises
    • Bicycle Maneuver, Half Roll-Ups, Vertical Leg Crunches, Hip Extension
      • 10 Reps each
    • Side Plank
      • Hold 60sec, each side
  • Lower Body
    • Squats, Pile Squats, Reverse Lunge w/ Leg Lifts
      • 10 Reps each
    • Static Wall Squats
      • 1 Min
    • Calf Raises
      • 25 Reps

This entire workout is done twice through except the Half Roll-Ups, which thankfully was only once. I have been doing these workouts while watching my shows from the DVR. It's a nice way to accomplish two birds with one stone! :)


(1hr, Max HR 176, Avg HR 145, 304 Cal Burned, 13.5g Fat Burned)

Weight Check-In (Sat AM):

A three pound gain. Yucky. But, I'm moving past this. In fact, I'm going to get rid of this whole section. The weekly weigh-in is not good for my health... my stress.
Instead, starting next week, this will be for a non-scale victory! :)

Fitness Plan for the Week:

Sunday - Zumba! // C25K Week 4 Day 1
Monday - Biggest Loser Int Workout #3
Tuesday - (It's mah BDAY!) Week 4 Day 2
Wednesday - Biggest Loser Int Workout #1
Thursday - rest
Friday - Week 4 Day 3
Saturday - Biggest Loser Int Workout #2

Saturday, April 20, 2013

S-A-TUR-DAY- NIGHT! [Wrap up]

Fitness for the week:

Sunday - Zumba!
(1hr, Max HR 184, Avg HR 159, 352 Cal Burned, 12.0g Fat Burned)

Monday - Couch to 5k, Week 4 Day 3
(30min, Max HR 178, Avg HR 153, 185 Cal Burned, 6.8g Fat Burned)

Tuesday - Nada

Wednesday - Nada

Thursday - Couch to 5k, Week 5 Day 1
(32min, Max HR 172, Avg HR 145, 125 Cal Burned, 5.2g Fat Burned)

Friday - Biggest Loser Intermediate Routine #1

  • Warm Up - 5min
  • Upper Body
    • Biceps Curls, Triceps Dips, Dead Lifts, Chest Flies, Shoulder Presses, Overhead Pulls
      • 10reps each
  • Core
    • Crunches, Oblique Crunches, Captain's Chair
      • 10reps each
    • Plank
      • hold 60sec
    • Back Extensions
      • hold 5-8sec
  • Lower Body
    • Lunges, Thigh Adductions, Reverse Lunges w/ Leg Lifts
      • 10reps each
    • Step Ups
      • 1 minute
    • Calf Raises
      • 25reps
This entire workout is done twice through. I did it while watching Hannibal (which is a fantastic show, BTW!) so it took about 50 minutes all the way through. I used 3lb dumbbells and an exercise ball to enhance the workout. I felt good, got a decent sweat, but am worried I'll be sore tomorrow to prep for my Week 5 Day 2 run! :)

Saturday -
Couch to 5k Week 5 Day 2
(31min, 2.5miles, Max HR 176, Avg HR 136, 154 Cal Burned, 7.4g Fat Burned)
Tonight, I must confess that I really half-assed this day. Or, maybe the treadmill needs to be re-calibrated. My FitBit Zip said I did 2.5miles, and the treadmill said I only did 1.75miles. I went with FitBit's number because I have measured its accuracy and it's spot on. However, it was raining so I did not do my run outdoors, as I'm trying to do [alternate outdoor and treadmill runs], I am sore from yesterday's Biggest Loser workout but I didn't want a little soreness to affect me. After all, the soreness is just my unused muscles waking up!

So, I went ahead with the day. Now, for the confession part..... I did have to slow down and walk for about thirty seconds... once during the first 8-minute run, and twice during the second 8-minute run. I feel disappointed I didn't push through, but it was due to knee pain which I always heed my body because of my knee issues. Day three is coming up and I'm supposed to run 2 whole miles [or 20min] without stopping..... which I don't think I can do. BUT- I'm going to try. I will try and do Day 3, and if I fail I will start Week 5 over again, until I can do it. :)

Weight Check-In (Sat AM):

A two-pound loss. I feel good about this, although I did have fast food [Chick-Fil-A] twice during this week. I am working on not going at all, but on my multiple days off now when I'm running errands on each day it's just the convenient thing to do. I'm thinking what I'll try to do is one of two things: 1) I'll try and run all of my errands in one day and early in the AM after breakfast.... or 2) If I end up out multiple days I will plan on bringing a lunch. Yup, packing a lunch to go grocery shopping! :-P

Fitness Plan for the Week:

Sunday - Zumba! Johnny's out but I'm excited for a new sub!

Monday - Couch to 5k Week 5 Day 3

Tuesday - Biggest Loser Intermediate #2

Wednesday - Rest. [I'm actually having some dental work done -nothing major- but I'm going to be on valium and will likely sleep the day away after I get home. If I'm feeling okay at night I may do some easy yoga.

Thursday - Couch to 5k Week [6 Day 1?]-OR-[5 Day 1?]

Friday - Happy Birthday Amy!!!!!!
Biggest Loser Intermediate #3

Saturday - Couch to 5k Week [6 Day 2?]-OR-[5 Day 2?]

This upcoming week is going to be nice. I have 3 days again, Sun, Mon, and Fri. I requested this weekend off because my BDay is next Tuesday (the 30th) and I plan to spend the weekend being awesome with friends :)

Monday, April 15, 2013

4 months.... Am I different??

Let's check in with my body! (That sounds SO WRONG) Let's look side by side and see if there's any progress!

January will be on top, April below.



I do see a little bit of a difference! Now, let's look from the side!



Holy shit! I knew those 4" would make a difference! Wow. I can't stop looking. I see a difference! I see a difference!!

I'm doing a happy dance!! :-D

Now, the obligatory butt shot! :-P



Besides the weird wedgie thing my short do.... I see some thinning along my hips! Wow!

*sigh* .... This is just AWESOME!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

S-A-TUR-DAY- NIGHT! [Wrap up]

I just want to say I am dumb! I did not start a draft for this week, so here I am racking my brain on Saturday night trying to remember what I did this week! 

Fitness for the week:

Sunday - Zumba
(Max HR 185, Avg HR 156, 350 Cal Burned, 12.7g Fat Burned)

Monday - Nada

Tuesday - 20min of relaxation yoga in between work shifts

Wednesday - Couch to 5k Week 4 Day 1
(30min, Max HR 184, Avg HR 150, 150 Cal Burned, 5.6g Fat Burned)

Thursday - Nada, I was a lazy butt

Friday - Zumba! I was excited to get to this class!
(1hr, Max HR 175, Avg HR 153, 338 Cal Burned, 13.3g Fat Burned)

Then!!! Johnny (our Sunday instructor) stayed after class to do a few songs with us, because the new girl who did tonight's was okay, but definitely a newbie instructor!)

(20min, Max HR 180, Avg HR 154, 120 Cal Burned, 4.5g Fat Burned)

Saturday - Couch to 5k Week 4 Day 2
(30min/2.25mi, Max HR 184, Avg HR 152, 171 Cal Burned, 6.2g Fat Burned)

Weight Check-In (Sat AM):

((I forgot to weigh in this morning, so I will do this weigh
in Sunday morning and update it!))

Fitness Plan for the Week:

For this upcoming week I'm only working 3 days! (Wed, Fri, Sat). I'm so excited to be at a part-time level now, but I'm afraid with all of this extra time on my hands I will just sit around in my underwear watching Supernatural marathons! So, I have printed out a schedule and plan to make the most of my week by planning out all of my days and sticking to them! This will have everything- down time, work, school, study time, gym, etc!

Sunday - Zumba with Johnny

Monday - Couch to 5k Week 4 Day 3 (I know this should have been done last week but I had issues (laziness) and could not complete the week within a calendar week, so I will hopefully be able to get Week 4 done and into Week 5 this week and be caught up!)

Tuesday - Body Pump 9a-10a (gym class)

Wednesday - Yoga (gym) 9a-10a // Couch to 5k Week 5 Day 1

Thursday - Zumba 11a-noon

Friday - Couch to 5k Week 5 Day 2 (early AM)

Saturday - Couch to 5k Week 5 Day 3 (late PM)

See what I did there? A whole week of fitness! I think I can do it. If I need to take a rest day, it will be Tuesday... I have never tried the body pump class, and I hear the instructor for it is pretty tough... but I'm interested! :)

Happy Fitness Week!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

I just felt like runn-ning.

"That day, for no particular reason, I decided to go for a little run. So, I ran to the end of the road. And when I got there, I thought maybe I'd run to the end of town. And when I got there, I thought maybe I'd just run across Greenbow County. And I figured, since I run this far, maybe I'd just run across the great state of Alabama. And that's what I did. I ran clear across Alabama. For no particular reason, I just kept on going. I ran clear to the ocean. And when I got there, I figured, since I'd gone this far, I might as well turn around, just keep going. When I got to another ocean, I figured, since I'd gone this far, I might as well just turn back, keep right on going."
-Forrest Gump

This is how I'm taking to running. In Week 4 of this Couch to 5k Program, I feel as though I'm taking steps backward, not forward. It is not getting easier, but I do see results. I can run more easily. I'm less tired, less winded. My HR is flattening out, not spiking when I run.

I was finishing up my run last night when I came home and my Father was in my driveway. I sat down, cooling off and catching my breath, and listened as my Pops told my husband "Just wait till she turns into a fox!!" What a compliment. Some would take that as him saying I wasn't one now, but I took it for what it was, a compliment hidden beneath some encouragement. He didn't ask if it was hard for me to run, didn't make jokes about my baggage flopping about, he simply smiled and said "Good for you!"

Thanks Pops, for the encouragement. Thank you for telling me to just keep running once I got to the mailbox, the end of the road, the turn of the streets. Once I find my ocean, turn around and come back. It's the little markers along the way I have to remember, not my ending location.

Saturday, April 6, 2013


Fitness for the week:

Sunday - [Easter] Nada. I enjoyed my mother-in-law's cooking and snacked on a few kit-kats. Bad Julie! >.<
Monday - Nada. I was going to before work, but the fat girl living inside me said no, and that I should eat another kit-kat or two. Or four. :-(
Tuesday - Couch 2 5k, Week 3 Day 1
(Well, almost. According to THIS website, I should have only done a 90sec run/90sec walk/3min run/3min walk twice through. I did six reps of 3min run/3min walk, so I'm ahead of schedule it looks like!)
(Max HR 239, Avg HR 156, 268 Cal Burned, 9.7g Fat Burned)
I would also like to add a change I've noticed. Other than today's spike in Max HR, I usually would top out around 180. I think today's was a fluke with my gear, because the treadmill said my max HR was 168, which is down almost 15pts! That means my heart is conditioning for this running thing!! Yay!!
Wednesday - Yoga @ home - 45 minutes
(Max HR 122, Avg HR 87, 38 Cal Burned, 2.3g Fat Burned)
Thursday - Nada
Friday - Nada. At work though I did have a decent day walking....
3.12miles/2454 Cal Burn
Saturday - Couch 2 5k Week 3 Day 2/3
I actually did it correctly this time. I am saying this is day 2 & 3 because the week is over and I was sick and could not complete the 3rd day. I'm going to try for week 4, but if I cannot do it, I will repeat week 3 properly.
(Max HR 179, Avg HR 147, 127 Cal Burned, 5.2g Fat Burned)
THEN.... I did another 25minutes of strength training, ab work, and cardio (punching bag!)
(Max HR 169, Avg HR 146, 132 Cal Burned, 6g Fat Burned)

Overall, I feel I had a good week. Despite the sinus infection that has lingered, I managed to work out more than I thought I would because of said infection.

Weight Check-In (Sat AM):

Woot! A small victory!
*does small victory dance*

Fitness Plan for the Week:

Sunday - Zumba!
Monday - Power Yoga / C25K Week 4 Day 1
Tuesday - Nada - I'm working in the AM, then coming back for an overnight that night!
Wednesday - C25K Week 4 Day 2
Thursday - Yoga @ Home
Friday - Muscle Fusion / (Or maybe nada.. depends on how I feel)
Saturday - C25K Week 4 Day 3

So yes, I plan on 6 days to work out next week! Crazy, right!??!?!
I may take Friday off too, it just depends on how I feel. The overnight at work will be tough this week.... it's all going to be receiving stock stuff, so think lifting heavy boxes and staying in one place to attach tags and stuff... boring! But I get to listen to music!! Yay!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Trying to find my zen

So, as you all know, I am a workaholic. Well, not really. The true backstory on that is that I got into retail management when I was 18 and basically never looked back. I worked full- (and over-) time and left school as an afterthought. Well, now, I have made a decision to help myself. As of this week I am now a part time associate at my store. I'm still up about 30-32 hours a week/5 days, but that will change as they hire someone to take my full-time spot.

It's nice already, I have two days where I'm there only 4 hours. 4. Not 8, not 10, but 4. It's a nice feeling already. I can now ask for 4 days off and not worry about my pay, and I can stop fighting them for vacation time I rightfully earned but was never given.... I can just work.

So, where's the zen in that, right? Obviously, it's not there. But, I have decided that the house is going to be my little project. My baby. And I'm starting with the outside. Right now, weeds have taken over the planters, and it looks very white-trashy around my house. I'm going to change that. I  plan to weed out the planter, remove the stupid dark-red rocks that came with the place, and put down some mulch and little non-shedding plants to make our house a real home again.

Gardening is going to be my zen.

I may even move on to try veggie gardening again, but seeing as how I couldn't even keep a tomato plant alive I'm weary at this point. The plants I just got this weekend are harder to kill, they are like little cactuses (cacti?) and are just so cute! I got them at Wal-Mart on clearance because they were kinda scruffy-looking. And I like scruffy looking.

So, let me introduce you! Firstly, there is the beautiful orchid my Mother brought me for Easter. It's so beautiful!

I'm going to try like hell to keep that alive, although I heard orchids can sometimes be a pain in the ass! :)

And these little guys are going to line my back patio once that is de-weeded and de-rocked.

From left to right: dieffenbachia, hypoestes, celosia
(Click names for their wiki info!)

So, there you have it. I just learned that the dieffenbachia is more of a houseplant, so I will likely just find a cute pot to move him into and keep him on the porch, maybe our outdoor table. I will also continue to grow my little collection and hopefully in the next week or two begin my gardening adventures! I which case, I may need another blog to do so! :-)

I'm off to yoga at 9, then lounging by the pool with some girlfriends from work for a few hours... what a nice day off indeed! :)