Saturday, November 1, 2008

Thursday Cardio Workout

Three words...

See Tuesday's Post

Same recommendations, just choose a different activity then you did on Tuesday.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Wednesday Leg Plyometrics

First off, this workout is super tough. But what did you expect from "Tough Girl"? You'll only do about 30-45 minutes of this workout depending on how long you rest in between. But you'll burn major calories in that short amount of time. The explanations are below the workout:

Warm up for 3 minutes (walk in place, side to side lunges, etc.)

Lunge Jumps-15 each leg
Hanging crunch-15 reps

Plie jumps-20 reps
Weighted Double Crunch-20 reps with 15 pounds

Squat, Squat Jump-15 reps
Weighted Oblique Dips-20 each side with 15 pounds

One Leg Jump-15 each side
Stability Ball Roll outs-15-30 reps

Lunge jumps are just as they sound. Start in a split stance (one leg in front of the other), lunge down then explosively jump up and switch feet in the air landing with the opposite foot in front. This is all done in a fluid motion with no stops.

Hanging crunch can be done by hanging on a chin up bar and lifting straight legs as high as they go (aim to touch the bar with your feet)

Plie jumps start in a wide stance, feet turned out 45 degrees. Squat down so thighs are parallel with the floor, then jump up (keeping legs wide) and land in the same starting position. Repeat until all reps are done.

Weighted double crunch: On your back grab a 15 pound dumbbell in both hands over your chest. Feet are in the air pointing toward the ceiling. Crunch both the shoulders and the hips off the ground at the same time reaching the dumbbell toward toes.

Squat, squat jump: Feet are hip width apart, hands held in front of chest for balance, squat low and return to start then squat low and jump as high as you can landing into another squat. Repeat.

Weighted oblique: Lie on side with just one elbow and your feet that are stacked. Weight is at hip being held by hand. Dip down a couple inches then back up for one rep.

One leg jump: Find a stair, sturdy low table or workout step. Stand with your side facing the step and one leg on top. Jump with the leg on the step and land without touching bottom foot (it is just for balance if needed). It kind of looks like you are skipping in place with only one foot.

Stability ball roll outs: Stand in front of a ball. Place elbows on top and step feet back until you are balancing on your elbows and toes and body forms a straight line from shoulders to heels. Roll ball out a few inches and back in while sucking your belly button in hard.

Good luck! If you have any questions I LOVE comments.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Tuesday's Cardio Workout

When I say cardio I mean any activity that gets your heart rate up and keeps it up for a significant amount of time. Some of the best cardio activities require little to no special equipment. Here are some indoor options for you:

Jump Rope: Do this for 20 minutes and you'll be feeling that heart of yours as it beats out of your chest.

Dance Dance Revolution: No, not the video game, but if you turn up your I-Pod or the radio and dance your heart out for 30 or so minutes not only will you get a great cardio workout but you'll have a good time too!

Jack, Ski, Jog, Repeat: Jumping jacks, ski jumps, jog in place with high knees, then repeat. Each exercise is done for one minute. Keep this up for as long as possible but if you make it more than 20-30 minutes at a time I'll be seriously impressed!

Stair Run: Got stairs? Run up and down them over and over and get the idea.

Super Woman House Cleaner: If your house gets as messy as mine, then you can tackle two chores at once. Pretend like you are late for an important meeting and clean like a crazy woman. You'll get the whole house clean in about an hour and you'll get your heart rate up for that long too, which counts for a cardio activity.

There are many more ideas and I'm sure you can all think of some. Leave a comment and let others know your secret "get fit at home" trick.


Sorry! I got busy and forgot to add onto our Winter Workout. Stay tuned...I'll have some time later today and I'll finish up our week. Tis the season to get busy!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Monday's Winter Workout

If you didn't see the previous post, read that one first. Okay, now you are ready for workout number one.

Monday: Arm and Cardio Circuit

You'll need a jump rope (real or imaginary), hand weights, chin up bar, and stability ball. You will do one set of the arm exercise indicated followed by one set of the ab exercise then one minute of the cardio listed. Repeat all exercises two more times, then move to the next group of exercises. Explanation or pictures of exercises are at the end of the post.

Warm up with 3 minutes of light cardio: marching in place, windmills, arm swings, grapevines.

Chin ups: as many as you can, even if you have to jump up and lower down slowly
Back Extensions on ball: 30 reps, no weight
Jumping Jacks: 1 minute

Push Ups: 15 reps, do as many as you can on your feet then finish out on knees if needed
Plank Taps: 30 reps each side, start in plank position and tap each knee to the floor while twisting the torso
Jump Rope: 1 minute

Concentration Curl: 15 each arm
Hanging Crunch: 30 reps, using chin up bar
Jog in place with high knees: 1 minute
Tricep Dip: using coffee table or sturdy chair, 20 reps
Pendulum: 10 each side
Speed Skater: 1 minute
Back extension with ball
Plank Taps
Hanging Crunch
Concentration Curl

Tricep Dip


Saturday, October 11, 2008

Winter Workouts

Now is the time of year that some people stop working out. Not because they think they are too busy. But usually because it is just too D@*% cold outside. Only they most dedicated runners can suit up in 75 layers to brave the windchill and slippery sidewalks.

Enter the gym. Don't have a gym membership? No problem! You have a gym in your own home and you don't even have to pay extra. Using household items can give you a great workout. The only hard part? Staying out of the kitchen and off the couch. Dedicate a small chunk of time during each day for your workout. Also dedicate a small corner, room, or even hallway for your workouts.

Okay, lets recap. We've decided that it's too cold to exercise outside. We've set aside a certain time each day to workout. And we've designated a space in your own home to be "the gym". Great, now lets get started!

If you are feeling really dedicated you can run out to the nearest Walmart, Sports Authority, or Big 5 and buy a few key items. A stability ball, 3-4 sets of hand weights (10 pounds and up), a jump rope, and even a chin up bar is all you'll need. Not in the market for new equipment? No problem. Just use these substitutions; a coffee table or chair instead of the ball, clean milk jugs filled with sand or dry beans hand weights, and an imaginary jump rope for (you guessed it!) the jump rope. Even your own kids can be usful heavy dumbbells. The chin up bar is a little difficult to substitute, but if you have any ideas leave me a comment.

Now for the workouts:

Monday: Arm and Cardio Circuit

Tuesday: Cardio

Wednesday: Leg Plyometrics

Thursday: Cardio

Friday: Arm and Leg Combination Circuit

Saturday: Fun Group Exercise

Sunday: Active Rest

Are you excited yet? We'll you'll just have to contain that excitement for a little longer. Stay tuned for explanations of the workouts. That will give you time to do what you need. Block out a time, find an empty space for your "gym", and gather exercise equipment.

Come back soon...

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

No thanks, I'm trying to quit

My husband always has a saying he uses anytime someone offers him something that he doesn't want. Say we are at my mother's house and she offers him a treat. He'll just say, "no thanks, I'm trying to quit".

It always produces a laugh, doesn't make anyone feel bad, and he never gets that dreaded..."are you sure? It's really good. Just a little won't hurt you. Come on, you know you want it".

So if you're in a situation where you are dieting or just plain eating healthy and don't want something offered, just tell them you are trying to quit. No feelings are hurt and you'll get a laugh out of it!

Monday, September 8, 2008

A Hike to the Summit of Mount Timpanogos

The view from the top

My friend, Amanda, and I hiked to the summit of Mount Timpanogos yesterday. We planned on it taking 8 hours or so but ended up finishing in 5 hours and 55 minutes! It was tough and my legs are feeling it today, but it was worth it. The view is gorgeous and the accomplishment pretty fantastic.

The summit of Mount Timpanogos is 11,749 feet, second highest in the Wasatch Mountains. The hike is 7.5 miles one way with an elevation gain of 4580 feet. We saw plenty of mountain goats. In fact we had to scare them off the trail so we could get by them. We passed within 5 feet of a mountain goat that sat there and stared us down. I also spotted a small brown animal with a tail that looked suspiciously like a mountain lion. Since they hunt mountain goat, I'm not too far off in thinking that's what I saw. Gotta keep things interesting, you know!

Mountain Goats

Amanda and the goat ahead on the trail

Funny story about this "toilet" if you can call it that. This is about 3/4 of the way up the summit right on the mountain side pretty much in plain view. Sure it's off the main trail a bit, but really not any better than using a tree. At least the walls were somewhat in place. Needless to say, I didn't need to go that bad!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

If you have to be sitting still...

...then you might as well be reading Breaking Dawn. I love the Twilight Series and this book was my favorite of the four. I love to read almost as much as I love to exercise and this story did not disappoint. I can't wait for the Twilight movie to come out in December. And I definitely can't wait until Stephenie Meyer writes another story.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Save Money, Burn Calories

There are daily, weekly, monthly, and even yearly chores that you can choose to do yourself or pay someone else to do it for you. If you do them yourself you'll not only save money but you'll work off those unwanted pounds that like to hang around. All calorie counts are for a 135 pound woman. Prices are just an estimate. Here is the low down:

Washing the Car yourself vs. Driving it through the Local Car Wash

Calories burned per hour: 184
Money saved: $7

Average yearly stats: 9568 calories burned; $364 saved if done weekly

Cleaning your own House yourself vs. Hiring a Cleaning Service

Calories burned per hour: 153-214
Money saved: $70-160

Average yearly stats: 9542 calories burned; $5,980 saved if done weekly

Mowing the Lawn yourself vs. Hiring a Neighborhood Kid

Calories burned per hour: 338
Money saved: $20

Average yearly stats: 17,576 calories burned; $1,040 saved if done weekly

Painting Interior Walls yourself vs. Hiring a Professional Painter

Calories burned per hour: 276
Money saved: $1500-$3000 for a typical 3 bedroom home

Average yearly stats: 1800 calories burned; $1500-$3000 saved

Massaging your Partners Back vs. Sending him to a Massage Therapist

Calories burned per hour: 245
Money saved: $60+

Average yearly stats for one massage monthly: 2940 calories burned; $720+ saved

Shopping at a Store vs. Ordering Online

Calories burned per hour: 141
Money saved on shipping: depends, but typically $5-$15 per item

Average yearly stats if done monthly: 1692 calories burned; $60-$180 per item

Remember that 3500 calories equals one pound. So if you were to do all these things every month verses the more expensive and lazy alternative you'd lose 12 pounds in theory and save $9,664-$11,284 a year!

Take that.

Monday, August 4, 2008

You Tube video that must be watched!

Thanks to my Hungry Girl Newsletter, I watched this short 3 minute video that has changed the way I think about portion sizes. Please watch it HERE and it may help you in your weight loss efforts!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Jillian's 30-Day Shred Workout DVD

Soon I will be trying out this new workout DVD with my sister-in-law Kara. I will keep you posted on how good of a workout it is and if I really can get "shredded" in 30 days. This will be fun! I like doing workout DVDs because I can really look like a fool in the comfort of my own home, I can workout even if it is 95 degrees outside, and I can get a good variety of exercises with minimal equipment.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Muscle on girls is a good thing!

I tried to convince a 10 year old girl in one of my gymnastics classes that muscles on girls is okay. She thought it was "weird" when you could see muscles on girls. They were climbing the rock wall and getting tired so I told them they were getting strong and building muscles. To which they complained that they didn't want to be buff "like boys". WHAT?!?! I am seriously offended. Who is teaching these girls that only boys can be buff? What the hell? Please, please, please if you know a girl between the age of 1 and 18 teach them that it is SO much better to be strong than weak. That muscles are hot and waif-like skinny is not. And that it is so okay to be a girl and be able to climb a rock wall or two (and do a couple push ups, and bench press, and carry a heavy box, and attempt pull ups....etc.)


Monday, July 7, 2008

Intense Cardio Interval Workout

5 min. Warm Up at 4.0 mph on treadmill

10 min. Run at 6.0 mph (or faster)

5 min. Jump Rope

10 min. Elliptical Trainer

10 min. Run at 6.0 mph (or faster)

5 min. Jump Rope

10 min. Incline walk at 4.0 mph on 10% incline

5 min. Cool Down at 4.0 mph

This is a fantastic workout that takes 60 minutes but seems like 20. Do this when it is either too hot, too cold, or too dark outside. Expect to breath hard (gasp for air is a better term) and feel great afterward.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


I love gymnastics! For kids it teaches discipline, coordination, and fun. If you live in the Salt Lake area and are looking for a fun activity for your kids, you should check out Bailies Gymnastics. Yes, I work there and No, I am not getting paid for this advertisement. I just love the way my kids (my own and my classes) look while learning fun tricks. Summer can be HOT and sometimes boring unless you have something planned. Why not introduce your boys and girls alike into the world of cartwheels, flips, foam pits, rock walls, spring boards, cheese mats, and tumbling trampolines?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Arm and AB workout

3 minute warm up

pull up (or modified pull up): 10-15 reps
back extensions on ball or machine: 30 reps
cardio: 1 minute

REPEAT 2-3 more times

DB chest press: 15 reps
plank: hold 1 min.
cardio: 1 min.

REPEAT 2-3 more times

concentration bicep curl: 15 reps
incline reverse curl: 20-30 reps (lay on an decline bench with head higher than legs, holding onto the bench near your head lift hips off bench pressing feet to the ceiling)

cardio: 1 min.
REPEAT 2-3 more times

bench dips: 20 reps

pendulum: 10 each side (on your back with feet in air and legs straight, drop both feet to one side without lifting back off ground; return to top and drop to other side)
cardio: 1 min.

REPEAT 2-3 more times

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

4th set

Anyone else getting tired of the same old exercise routine? 3 sets of 12-15 reps for the same old exercises 1 minute cardio in between...blah blah blah. Me too. On a whim I decided to change things up. So I cut down the number of exercises from 6 (for legs) to only 3. I changed the repetitions from 15-20 to about 10-12 and added significant weight. And I decided to do 3 minutes of cardio at the end of each set instead of 1 minute between each exercise. That's a lot of numbers. What does it add up to? Soreness! Pretty simple tweaks, less to think about and less total time and you've got yourself a great new workout. Here is what one of my Leg days looks like:

  • Smith Machine Quarter Squat 12 reps with 85 pounds
  • Single Leg Curl with Stability Ball 10 reps each leg
  • Single Leg Smith Machine Squat 10 reps each leg with 65 pounds
  • 3 minute elliptical on Level 10

Repeat 3 more times for a total of 4 sets

  • Hanging Crunch 15 reps
  • Weighted Back Extension 30 reps with 25 pound dumbbell
  • Incline Reverse Curl 25 reps
  • Weighted Standing Side Bends 15 reps with 20 pound dumbbell
  • Plank 2 minutes

Repeat AB section once more for a total of 2 sets

I like to supplement this with another leg workout that same week of only body weight exercises and one arm and ab circuit boot camp style.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


I guess I'll come clean. After 10 days and one mental breakdown I've decided to not follow through with the original plan. I guess there are more important things out there than worrying about getting fat. Yep, fat. I said it. Probably my biggest fear in life and it's really no big deal. So this is the end of my blog about my body image issues. I guess I will bury them and eventually they will go away. Here on out, if you choose to read this blog, you'll get fitness tips and occasional nutrition facts. Let's be professional here.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Day 10

I can't believe it's already day 10. I know I am getting lax about the all fruits and veggie thing. But it's better than doing nothing, I guess. Last night I had nothing at the candy, no soda, no popcorn (it always smells better than it tastes anyway). And at Sweet Tomatoes I filled up my plate with veggies and salad, added a little salad dressing (this is where I am lax) and had two bowls of vegetarian soup. If it is vegetarian does that mean there is only veggies in there? I took it as a yes, and ate up. Not one brownie morsel made it past my lips. Still, I feel like I ate too much while there and didn't feel at all skinny that night when we got home. It was probably because of the sodium in the dressing and soup.

I am looking forward to today. No plans to eat out so I can really stick to the diet. I also bought my first watermelon of the season and I can't wait to cut it up and sink my teeth in. Imagine how great it will taste after all these months of winter. My plan:

Breakfast: banana drizzled with honey (my new favorite meal)

Lunch: green smoothie

Snack: fruit salad

Dinner: green salad and watermelon

I'll also drink plenty of water, take my vitamins, and get in a great workout. Peace out.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

So far so good

Just a little post before we head out to the movie and dinner. So far I've done fantastic (in my mind) and wanted to recognize that fact before I face temptation. Not that it is any temptation, because I've already made up my mind about what I will and will not eat. Over and out.


No one is perfect, right? No one expects me to be perfect, do they? I didn't think so. With that in mind, day 9 can be flushed right down the toilet. I'm not sure what happened but my resolve dissolved into a food mess. I won't post what I ate, just know that is was not a fruit or vegetable. But that was yesterday and this is today. I can't do anything about the past...all I can do is move on and focus on today.

Which, BTW, today is Tre's birthday. Happy 9th Tre! Celebrations are always tough. This is what I will do to get through it:

  • Dinner is at Sweet Tomatoes...great for me (salad, fruit, no preparation!), and great for Tre (unlimited ice cream and chocolate sauce and sprinkles).
  • He is not a huge fan of cake so I am making mint brownies. He loves them and I don't care for them at all. Mint and chocolate does not do it for's kinda like brushing your teeth then biting into chocolate. All that gooey chocolate is ruined by the fresh mint taste.
  • I'll be busy today with wrapping, baking, watching the Dance Festival at his school, and going to see Speed Racer right after school. No time to get bored and eat.

That's the plan. And if I stick to the diet today I'll be pretty happy.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Day 8

I'm not sure if anyone really wants to be reading about my little world, but it helps me when I post about this daily.

So Monday rolls around and it hits....I want to eat real food! It doesn't help that it rained all day and was cold. When the weather is like this I just want something warm. I did okay until dinner time. I wanted cereal, bread, and peanut butter because salad, smoothies, or fruit just didn't sound good. I broke. I had a bazillion spoonfuls of peanut butter and a slice of bread with smart balance spread. Then I brushed my teeth and told myself I was done even though I felt bad that I couldn't eat what I wanted.

I guess I could eat what I wanted....if I was weak and not willing to stare my problem in the face. I could just run away and hide in food like always or I can break the binge/diet cycle. I want this to work. It just doesn't feel like it will right now. Really I just need to stop making a big deal out of this. Somewhere in this world there are a lot bigger problems than mine.

Tuesday is a new day and the day I will buckle down and finish what I started. So far I've had coffee and an all fruit smoothie for breakfast. Lunch will be a green smoothie and dinner will be a big salad with lots of veggies. I'm going to the store today to stock up on fresh fruits and veggies and 100% juice.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Day 6 & 7

Not bad, not bad at all. I survived Cafe Rio on Saturday. No problem here. I just ordered a salad like usual and asked for an extra plate. Then I took most of the lettuce, pico de gallo, guacamole, and black beans and let Belle and Jer eat the rest. It was fantastic!

Then there was lunch at Nana's house on Sunday. They had shredded pork sandwiches on fresh rolls, corn on the cob, strawberry pie, cupcakes, and a bowl full of mini chocolate bars. I had caesar salad and tomato slices. I also opened up a can of diet Dr. Pepper, had about 3 sips, decided I didn't want it and gave the rest to Tre.

I feel normal otherwise. If you can call me normal. I really want this to work. I would hate for all this hard work to go down the drain as soon as I start eating real food again. Not that fruits and veggies aren't real food, but you know what I mean.

Weight as of Monday morning: 131.8

My goal is to stay between 125 and 130 year round. This is easy for me around Christmas time (must be all that holiday cheer) but seems to be a little more difficult in the summer months. Crazy.

I'm thinking that if I can resist Nana's strawberry pie, I can resist anything as long as I put my mind to it. The trick was deciding before hand that there would be no question. I made my decision and I was not going to back down. I wanted to be in control, not the other way around. Bring on week 2!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Day 5

It's been five day of eating only fruits, vegetable, and a little peanut butter. At this point I feel proud, in control, happy, and skinny. I have lost 4.2 pounds so far (probably water) but feel 30 pounds lighter. My clothes fit better, I hold myself higher because I am not ashamed of being a hypocrite, and I feel in control. Food doesn't have control over me...I have control over it.

Fruits and vegetables have a more intense taste now. A fresh strawberry or some frozen banana pieces explode in my mouth and I'm pretty sure they have a party. Last night we went out to dinner. Wingers no less. I ordered the Chicken Mango Salad minus the chicken, almonds, dressing, and tortilla strips. A huge bowl of satisfying crisp lettuce, soft juicy mango pieces, and candy-like Craisins. Add a little tiny bit of poppy seed dressing (I'm talking maybe a teaspoon) and I was in heaven. Sounds corny but it's the truth.

I haven't had any cravings as of yet. I know it's early still but they say the first week is the hardest. After Monday, it's all down hill. The trick will be when (if) I start eating other healthy foods like lean protein, whole grains, light sauces and dressings, and small portions of my favorite treats.

Memorial Day will not have a hold on me. I'll have some fun for sure, but it will not revolve around food thank you very much.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Day 4

I don't feel hungry anymore. That empty feeling in my gut is gone and I my stomach doesn't growl like it did at the beginning of the week. I have to remind myself to eat when I start getting low on energy. Actually food in general just doesn't sound good. Weird. My face is breaking out because of excess oil (this is supposed to be normal with detox) but I had to cinch my belt to the next hole today. Here are some stats:

  • Starting weight: 136.6
  • Weight on Day 4: 132.4

  • Starting average daily calories: 2100
  • Average daily calories now: 1055 (I know it is extremely low and not a balanced diet, I don't promote this diet to anyone unless they are seriously struggling with eating compulsion or food addiction!)

  • Favorite food last week: PB sandwiches, cookies, doughnuts
  • Favorite food this week: Fruit salad--one banana, 4 large strawberries chopped, one clementine mixed with 3 Tbs orange juice and cinnamon to taste

I'll keep posting about this, stay tuned to see if it is all worth it. BTW...I am nervous about Memorial Day weekend coming up and Tre's Birthday next week. Lots and lots of temptations. Family, friends, food, and fun could spell disaster.

I am strong, I am in control of my eating habits, I love my body and will treat it right.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Day 3

Today was the third day on strictly raw fruits, veggies, and 100% juice. I did add 2 Tbs of peanut butter for energy (I have to keep up with my gymnasts!). Here is what my day looked like today. BTW, I feel fantastic so far. I am also proud of myself.


  • 1 cup coffee
  • one banana
  • 1 cup orange juice


  • Spaghetti squash
  • 4 Tbs fresh salsa
  • one apricot

Afternoon snack:

  • 2 Tbs natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup frozen cherries (YUM!)
  • Crystal Light packet
  • multi vitamin with calcium


  • Green Smoothie: 2 cups baby spinach, 3/4 cup frozen mango, 1/2 cup frozen blueberries, 1 cup orange juice, 1 cup water; blended

Sounds weird but it is actually SO good.

I needed caffeine mid-afternoon for a little pick me up, but other than that I feel good. I am happy with my decision. I started at 136.6 pounds on Monday I am 133.4. Yes, most of this is water weight. But what am I doing holding onto all that water anyway? Probably because my body has been dehydrated and under nourished.

I was tempted today to eat other food. I didn't though and am proud of that fact. I was just going to pop something in my mouth just out of habit, not hunger, and had to stop and throw it away. The biggest temptation was when Tre offered me his cookie because he couldn't eat the rest. If you know me well you know that cookies are my one and only. No more. Cookies will not have a hold over me. I have learned to accept slight hunger and know that it is not the end of the world. Food will not go away, there is always tomorrow, and I am not starving.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Eat your fruits and veggies

That is just what I am going to do. In fact I am embarking on a new adventure. Only (raw) fruits and vegetables for the next 30 days. Yes, I said 30! You might be wondering why. Well, I'll tell you....

I have been reading up on my disordered eating habits because I am sick of falling into the same old rut. I thought there has got to be a cure out there, so online I go. Because food addiction is like any other addiction (cigarettes, drugs, alcohol) the only way to stop the destructive behavior is to quit cold turkey. That is not always easy with food since we kinda need it to live. So the next best thing is flushing out the bad by eating only raw fruits and vegetables. The goal is to teach the body and mind to live without the food. Only what is necessary to function.

I am supposed to re-learn what hunger really feels like, eat to live not live to eat, and flush the body of toxins that are supposedly in my system due to animal fats, dairy, and sugar overload. This is day two of my adventure and so far I feel great! I feel lighter (not pounds wise but it's hard to explain) and I feel in control of my behavior.

I read many tips and hints to stay away from the bad such as negative thinking. Examples: maggots in your movie popcorn, pizza sludge digesting in my gut, white flour goo loaded with sugar and fat in the form of a doughnut. Also thinking about gross thoughts when tempted (someone throwing up, finding a hair in your fast food, or a pound of lard sitting in my butt). Sounds disgusting but so far it has worked. I am also supposed to take 5 deep breaths before I eat anything, and keep a list of things to do if tempted to overeat.

I don't know if this will work or if I can really do it, but I want to try. I want control over food. Control over what and how much of it I eat. I also want to stay away from dairy, gluten, and sugar to see if I can get rid of my stomach problems and headaches. I will be taking a multi-vitamin daily and watching calcium and iron intakes. I need your support. Even if you don't agree with the severity of the program. It's like AA for food-aholics. I will keep updates about my days; what I eat, how I feel, if I am sticking to the program, and weight lost if any. Wish me luck!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Fidget to fight fat:

In a recent study, scientists from the Mayo Clinic issued motion-sensing skivvies to 10 heavy people and 10 thin ones, then recorded even their tiniest movements 24 hours a day. Ten days later they found that overweight people simply moved less than their lean companions, burning 350 fewer calories per day. To get yourself "fidgeting," plop down on a stability ball for 15 minutes each hour and use it to keep yourself in perpetual motion.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Food Through a Lens

Ah! Food. One of my favorite pastimes. I thought it would be fun to take a picture of everything I ate for one day. I also thought it would help me stick to a healthy didn't. Here is what my Thursday looked like through the lens:

My daily morning coffee. One cup of Joe with 1/2 TBS creamer and a packet of sugar substitute.
Breakfast: One egg substitute only omelet, a clementine, a Western Alternative Sweet Wheat bagel with 1 oz Weight Watchers cream cheese.

Morning snack: 2 saltine crackers. I didn't need these, but Belle was having some and I grabbed two without even thinking about it. I had to get two more to take a picture of and then put them back! Mindless eating....I'll work on that.

Lunch: Grilled peanut butter and (sugar free) jelly sandwich and one apple.

Snack: Okay, it's not really a snack. We took Tre to the dentist at about 2:30pm then to the park to play. On the way to the park I was hungry so we stopped at the gas station and I got a 32 oz Diet Dr. Pepper. I knew we would eat dinner soon so I didn't want to eat anything. The drink did the trick.

Dinner: McDonald's Grilled Classic Chicken sandwich, and 3/4 of a large fry (ugh!). Tre got to pick where we went to dinner (when the kids go to the dentist we make it their 'special day' so they don't dread going) and apparently I was too hungry to make a healthy choice, hence the fries. Sure was tasty though.

Snack: 1.5 cups Fiber One cereal, dry, and one cup Light Vanilla Soy Milk.

Evening Binge: 2 maple bars from Harmons. I don't want to blame anyone but myself, but I had a meeting for work from 8-9:30 and Jer wanted me to stop and get him Butter cream Maple Bars from Harmons. They didn't have any but these maple bars looked delicious even though I wasn't hungry at all. So what did I do? I bought a box of 4 and ate half of them. Yikes!
Calories: 2385
Fat grams: 89
Carb grams: 357
Protein grams: 91
Sodium: 3889 mg
Fiber: 54g
Sugar: 98g
Not one of my best nutrition days. I think Friday will be a much better day.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

A Mother of a Workout

I am cutting down to a tip of the week instead of daily. Just in time for Mother's Day, I have a tip for working out with your kids. Depending on how big or little they are you may need to adjust. When I am stuck in a hotel room with no way to go out and run and no weights in site I turn to my kids for resistance training. Here are a few exercises that are my favorites:

Push up: Let your child sit or lie on your back to add extra weight to some basic push ups.

Dip: Sit your kid on your lap, slide off the chair with hands right next to your hips, bend at the elbows to lower yourself to the floor and then press back to starting. This works the triceps.

Curl and Press: Works biceps and shoulders; Start standing up holding your child under their arms, arms straight. Bend elbows to bring the little bugger's face to your face (bicep curl), kiss if needed, then press them into the air over your head (overhead shoulder press) and reverse the motion.

Squats and lunges: Put 'em on your back or shoulders and squat and lunge until your hearts content (beating hard).

Leg extension: Sitting on a sturdy chair (or on the edge of a swimming pool) let your kids sit on your feet and hug your shins. While holding them in place extend knees so legs are straight then lower. You'll feel it, but I'll tell you it works the quadriceps, or front part of the thigh.

Core: Any ab exercise can be done with your child sitting on your stomach. What this does is force you to keep the abdominal wall contracted throughout the movement which means extra work for the core.

Happy Mother's Day to all!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Tip of the Day--SHOULDER'S

Well, it's trying to be shoulder bearing weather outside. Hopefully it will stick. Time to pull out the t-shirts, tanks, and swimsuits. And what better way to feel great in these items than shapely shoulders?

Put an extra shoulder exercise (or two) into your strength routine starting ASAP. Soon you will be seeing some shape and cut to your upper arm. Not a lot of people have a lot of fat covering their shoulder area. So when you work this muscle you can see the definition a lot sooner than say, your glutes. Plus the eye automatically travels from your eye's to your smile to your neck and shoulders. Here are a few shoulder exercises to try:

Overhead Press: Aim for 3 sets of 8-10 reps with weight that is so heavy that you can barely finish the 10th rep with good form. Anywhere from 8 pound dumbbells to 30 pound dumbbells.Lateral raise: Again, use a weight heavy enough to tire out the muscles within 12-15 reps. Finish 3 sets of these.

Front raise: Same as above. This exercise focuses on the front head of the deltoids (shoulder). Always keep abs tight and knees slightly bent.

Push ups, pull ups, chest press, and some triceps exercises also work the shoulders as an assisting muscle group.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Tip of the Day--TREATS

This is not really a tip. Just a question. If you could only eat one treat for the rest of your life, what would it be?

I think I couldn't live without sugar cookies. I only eat them around certain holiday's and birthdays. I like to make sugar cookies with my kids. The kitchen is a mess, the kids are sugar laden, and the memories are set by the time we are done. And it is an all day thing. I guess treats aren't just about taste, but what they represent.

Now it is your turn. We did healthy snacks already so now it is not so healthy snacks. What would you choose?

Belle blowing out the candles on her pink frosted sugar cookie at her 5th birthday party

Tre and Belle showing off their snowman cookies they made this past summer. What is better than eating snow (men) in July?

Christmas sugar cookies are a tradition in our house. The kids (okay, me too) look forward to this all year!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Tip of the Day--BOOTY CALL

Want a great exercise that works your glutes? Try one leg squats. I do mine on the Smith Machine with 20 pounds on each end of the bar. You can also do them with dumbbells or just your own body weight. If you do it this way, put the top of your non-working foot on a bench or chair for balance. Squat down as low as you can and push through the heel of the working foot on the way up. Aim for 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps on each leg. This can also be done at the gym on the leg press machine. It's important to remember to keep your knee stable and not let it cave in or press out. It stays right in the middle.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Tip of the Day--SNACKS

Snacks are good. The right kind of snacks are even better. Here is a list of my favorite snacks that tide me over until my next meal. Please add your favorite snack foods to the comment section. I always like new snack ideas. Thanks!

  • light string cheese and an apple
  • handful of almonds (12-24)
  • bowl of Kashi GoLean with soy milk
  • Western Bagel wheat bagel with WW light cream cheese
  • Skippy Natural Peanut Butter (just on a spoon)
  • banana or apple dipped in melted PB
  • protein shake
  • snap peas
  • Fiber One Caramel Delight cereal, dry
  • Fiber One granola bar
  • any 100 calorie pack snack
  • South Beach Diet high protein cereal bar

I am sure there are others but these are the ones I like best. The trick is to eat something with a little healthy fat, some protein, and carbs. Or veggies plain since they have fiber and we typically don't get enough veggies in our diets. Snack time is a great time to fill fiber or veggie requirements. It is also a great boost to your day and can help you from scarfing down your next meal because you are so famished.

Remember to add your favs to the comments.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Tip of the Day--DRINKS

Stop drinking your calories already! Between 1995 and 2002 the number of calories Americans swigged each day more than doubled-and those from sugary quenchers like soda, fruit drinks, and alcohol quadrupled. That's a whole lot of Jamba Juice! Liquid calories can leave you wanting more...something that involves actual chewing.

(Limit this activity to special occasions only)

Monday, April 28, 2008

Tip of the Day--OUTSIDE

Get outside and do something different today. If you normally run on a treadmill, try it outside. It doesn't really matter what it is, just head out in the sunshine for your workout. Like to bike? Rollerblade? Hike? Walk? Jog? Play at the park with the kids? Swim? (Okay, it's still a little cold for swimming) Have a great day and enjoy some vitamin D and warmth on your skin.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

A little slip...

This weekend was not so great as the rest of the week. Do I care? Not too much. Will I re-commit Monday? You betcha! My goal that keeps me on track? Raging Waters season passes. Swimming suit in public? I better look great! Or at least feel that way. Anyway, I will keep you posted. Literally. Oh, and the picture is just some Hawaiian flowers that make me smile.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Back on track

While on vaca I slacked in the eating right department. So since we've been back I have jumped right back on the wagon. Since Sunday I have stuck to my daily caloric budget, had plenty of water, enough protein, and not too much fat (30%). I am proud to say that I weigh the same as before I left. I am also working out and adding weight and/or reps to my strength days. I injured my foot in Hawaii and cannot run but I can do weights and the elliptical. My butt is sore today and I LOVE it!!

This post is not only a pat on my back from myself but it is a reminder that I feel great and want to keep this up. I know I will be tempted by things this weekend but I really want to stay on track for now. Besides, summer is around the corner and I would love to hang out in short shorts and my swimming suit all season.

For those reading this I encourage you to jump back on the wagon if you have fallen, stay on the wagon if you are still there, or start pulling the wagon if you need a plateau breaker. If I can do it, so can you. Set yourself up for SUCCESS. Don't plan to fail. You and I both are in this together.

Tip of the Day--BAGELS

My tip today is really just a comment. I wanted to tell you about these amazing bagels I love. Western Bagel Alternative in Sweet Wheat and Cinnamon Spice. YUM! Check out the nutritionals on these babies:

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 Bagel (2 oz) 57g
Servings Per Container: 5
Amount Per Serving

Calories 110
Calories from Fat 0
Total Fat 0g
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 210mg
Total Carbohydrates 25g
Dietary Fiber 7g
Sugars <1g>
Plus they taste amazing! I like mine with either PB&J or Weight Watchers low fat cream cheese spread.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Tip of the Day--ERECTOR SPINAE

Typically the most overlooked body part while training is the erector spinae, or in layman's terms, the lower back muscles that run the length of the spine. This is an important part of the core that needs just as much work as the abdominal's and obliques.

The best way to train this area? Lie face down on an exercise ball with it positioned right under your belly. Feet are wide and pressing into the floor for stability. Hands behind your head with elbows pointing out. Lift and lower your upper body focusing on using the lower back muscles that run the length of your spine. This is a slow and controlled movement with a pause at the top. Aim for 15-30 reps. When this gets too easy you can add weight by holding it in your hands at your chest.

There is also a apparatus at most gyms that is designed for this. Look for a machine that you climb into and hang upside down from the waist down. The movement is the same, hands behind your head, feet anchored to the pads, lifting upper body up and down.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Tip of the Day--PROTEIN

Are you looking to lose weight? Are you exercising regularly? Are you getting enough protein in your diet? Recommendations suggest getting 0.75-1.0 grams of the muscle building macro nutrient for every pound you weigh. I weigh 132 and strive to get 80-100 grams of protein daily. This one is hard for me. I'd much rather snack on apples, cereal, or bread than tuna, eggs, or chicken. But if you get at least 15% of your total calories from protein you are doing okay. Here is what an ideal meal plan looks like for me. And remember, what works for me may not work for you.

1/2 cup egg substitute
1 whole egg
1 slice Granny's Delight Wheat & Fiber bread
1/2 cup blueberries

Post Workout Snack:
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
1 cup 100% orange juice
1/2 banana

1 Western Bagel Preservative Free light wheat bagel
2 Tablespoon Skippy Natural crunchy peanut butter
1 Tablespoon Smuckers Sugar Free raspberry jelly

Afternoon Snack:
2 cups romaine lettuce
1 plum tomato
1 pouch tuna
1 Tablespoon Kraft light ranch salad dressing

1 grilled chicken breast
1.5 cups steamed broccoli tossed with olive oil and sliced almonds
2/3 cup cooked brown rice

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Did you know that your brain tells your muscles that they are failing when they really have some juice left? Have you ever ran or biked or swam in a race and just when you felt like you where giving it your all, you see the finish line and have a burst of energy? This is a prime example that your brain has the upper hand over what your muscles can actually accomplish.

Why? Well I could get lengthy but instead I will give the shortened version. Your brain is protecting you (and you muscles) by not letting them work at full capacity. In the example with the finish line, your head knows that the end is near so it will let your muscles (heart included) expend all energy that is left.

What does this mean for you? You have to push your muscles past what your brain wants. You can take it. Your body may be screamin' and shakin' but you can eke out those last few reps, laps, or meters. Visualize yourself finishing with strength. It's not easy, but hey! who said anything worth it is easy?

Monday, April 21, 2008

Tip of the Day--I'M BACK

I'm back and ready to roll again. I missed the blogging world, but not too much. Here is a rundown of active activities that kept us busy this past week in Hawaii.

  • Jogging on the boardwalk

  • Running on the beach

  • Boogie boarding

  • Body surfing

  • Swimming in the ocean

  • Swimming in the pool

  • Snorkeling (ever done this while holding up a 5 year old? Not easy!)

  • Hiking

Now here are some not so active activities that kept us busy.

  • Eating chocolate covered macadamia nuts

  • Sunbathing

  • Eating fish and chips

  • Sitting on a plane for 7 hours

  • Eating cheeseburgers in paradise

  • Sitting in a car while touring the island

  • Drinking frozen concoctions

  • Sunbathing some more

  • Eating snacks

So my tip for this day? It's for me to get back on track and start eating healthier, exercising more, and staying out of the sun. It was SOO worth it though!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Tip of the Day--HUNGRY

Eat only when you are hungry. Not starving, not satisfied, not full, but only when hungry. Easier said than done? Yup! Do I struggle with this daily? Yup! Have a great weekend...there will be no 'Tip of the Day' posts for a week or so. Keep up the exercise, healthy eating, and get plenty of sleep. Oh, and take two of these and call me in the morning.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Tip of the Day--RUN

Don't think you're a runner? Convinced that people are either born runners or born fast walkers? You are wrong. You CAN be a runner, but it will take some practice and hard work. Start out slow. Run only as long as you can the first time even if it is for 5 minutes. Do that three times that week. The next week add two minutes to your time and repeat for 2 more days. Keep doing this and in a couple months or so you will be able to call yourself a runner.

How do I know this stuff? Well, I thought I was destined to be a fast walker for life. I was doing 60 minutes a day 4 times per week and getting B-O-R-E-D. I knew running was where it was at to get serious fit. So I hopped on my treadmill on a Monday and pushed myself to run for as long as I could. I made it 20 minutes! I was stoked. I ran 20 minutes again on Wednesday and Friday and set a goal of 22 minutes for the next Monday. I took days off in between to give my aching calves and lungs a break. It took me 5 whole tough months but I reached my goals of running for an hour without stopping and to call myself a "runner".

I didn't always reach my goal time for that week but I tried. Sometimes you will have an off day and feel like you can only run for 5 minutes. Do what you can and resolve to do better the next running day. I felt proud because I worked hard and reached a goal. And running does some serious mood boosting. I felt a serotonin high every time I reached my goal time.

Tough? Sure. Worth it? Absolutely! Do I believe in you? Of course I do!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Tip of the Day--KNEES

You stepped wrong and wrenched your knee (ouch!), taking glucosamine can help fix that injury faster, Research in Sports Medicine shows. Injured athletes who took 1,500 milligrams of the cartilage-mending supplement a day for 28 days could flex and extend their knee 10 percent farther than those who didn't pop the pills. Not only for knees but all injuries at a joint (ankle, wrist, elbow, shoulder, etc.)

Monday, April 7, 2008

Tip of the Day--WAGON

Falling off the band (or diet or exercise) wagon could be detrimental. But it doesn't have to be. One bad day or weekend or week is not the end of the road for you. I can tell you this because I had another semi-binge weekend this weekend and I am not going to let is ruin my life. Monday is the day to pick right up where I left off. I will not give up on myself and I will not let you give up on yourself. Stick to the plan. If it goes awry, dig in and get over it. We deserve to treat ourselves with respect and love.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Tip of the Day--MISTAKES

Here are the top ten mistakes I think people make when exercising and dieting:

  1. Lifting weights that are too light
  2. Not keeping an accurate food journal or keeping one at all
  3. Poor form when running, weight lifting, or working the abdominal area
  4. Thinking that the little bites and sips and licks don't have any calories
  5. Choosing cardio over weights when short on time
  6. Not getting enough protein
  7. Overlooking important muscle groups when exercising (back, glutes, hamstrings, shoulders)
  8. Eating the wrong kinds of fat (saturated, trans fat)
  9. Not pushing yourself to your limit...the body is quite capable of handling exercise stress
  10. Keeping "trigger" or empty calorie foods in the house

This is my opinion and may or may not pertain to you. Any questions about the list? Leave a comment. I LOVE getting comments!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Tip of the Day--CLEAN

It has been proven that washing your hands four times a day during school (for kids) = up to 51% fewer sick days. For us adults that means more washing = less missed workouts. Keep clean, stay lean!