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Getting back on the wagon

It has been a struggle for me to work out lately. I haven’t been motivated at all and I’m starting to think me and the gal who runs half marathons are two different people!

But, we all go through peaks and valleys in life, right? One thing I have going for me is that I’ve been reading this book:

The only time I seem to be able to completely focus on reading is on the bike or elliptical trainer at the gym. At home, I get distracted by so many other things that I usually end up reading the same paragraph four times before giving up.

So I’ve gotten a few sessions in the past couple of weeks. I was on the elliptical for 60 minutes on Tuesday (keep up with my weekly workouts here)! Plus, it’s a really good book so far. When I finish, it will be the first book I’ve read all the way through in a very, very long time.

Another thing that has helped me get back on the fitness wagon is my friend Farrah.

I haven’t seen her in a while because we’ve both been busy. But today we got to workout for the first time in a long time and she kicked my behind (she’s a trainer, haha)! We walked outside for 3 miles and then came back in to do weights and abs. I know I will be sore tomorrow for sure!

And yes, that is an older picture, ha ha. It’s hard to imagine wearing sweaters right now as it’s been over 100 degrees here recently! But I shall not complain, I am no fan of winter.

Anyway, if you have been struggling with exercise (or lack thereof) try enlisting a really inspiring and active friend to get you moving or start diving into a new book while you sweat it out at the gym. Whatever it takes to get you moving so you can feel good again 🙂

I feel better already! Let’s hope this continues.

Gym rat

On Memorial Day Monday, I officially became the proud owner of Josh’s now former gym membership.

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While I am sad that he’s not using it for himself, I have to keep telling myself that you can only lead a horse to water. There’s no sense in paying for something not being used and since canceling was not an option ($$$) we were able to transfer the remaining months on the contract into my name.

I definitely prefer to be outside in nature, taking a nice long walk or invigorating run, but my free time has recently become quite limited and now that it’s hitting at or near the 90 degree mark every day, time outside is also limited. So this could not have come at a better time!

I’ve also been struggling with a little weight gain pretty much since the mini-Marathon but this new gym membership is just what I needed to get me motivated again 🙂

Since we were off work on Monday, I took Suzie for a nice long walk (for her, 2 miles) in the morning before it got too hot. As a smaller dog, she is really sensitive to the heat so we try not to stay out too long.

Tuesday afternoon, I actually braved the heat (for a few minutes) and did a 1.87 mile run with Farrah and about 5 minutes of abs. It was way too hot for me to be running outside but I know the more you do it, the easier it gets. Still, I want nothing over 2 miles when it’s 88 degrees!

Then last night I went to the gym for the first time. What is my favorite thing about gyms?

GROUP FITNESS CLASSES!

Every Tuesday and Thursday at 7:30 p.m., this gym has Body Pump classes. I was so excited to get to my first one at this new gym last night!

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I’ve taken Body Pump several times before and loved it. Once at the YMCA, a couple of times at Urban Active, and even a “do it yourself” body pump I did on my own. It’s a perfect toning workout for me! I’m so glad that now belonging to a gym, I can start going more regularly and get some real results.

It was much smaller than other classes I’ve been in, which has to do with the size of the gym, so it was a little more intimate if you will. The instructor was really great, even throwing out a few random nutrition facts (“limit saturated fats!”) while we were “pumping” up our bodies.

She also made sure when we were doing an exercise that we were engaging the right muscle, which I’d never even noticed before. Like when you are doing a bent over row (for your back), don’t use your biceps to pull in the bar, use your back muscles and squeeze your shoulders together. It makes such a difference!

We started out with a warm up of each exercise we’d be doing and then we went through the tracks: squats, chest, back, shoulders, triceps, biceps, lunges, abs. I think that’s it! I didn’t care much for all of the music but I’ll get used to it. I can’t wait to go back tomorrow!

Finally, this morning I popped in around 6 a.m. to get in a little 30-minute elliptical action before work. I work full-time, I’m taking summer classes, and have a lot of after work commitments, so first thing in the morning is just about all I have left. It worked out great, no pun intended.

How do you keep up with your workouts over the summer?

Cold and flu season

Good evening everyone! Thank you for your comments on my previous post on how I got back on track. I appreciate all of you guys! 🙂

I hope this post finds you having a glorious day and in the best of health.

Over here in our household, we have a sick dude. Josh is coming down with a cold or something, his sinuses are a mess and he’s feeling icky and  lethargic. I hope he feels better soon. But I’m kind of avoiding him so I don’t get the germs.

I haven’t had a cold or any illness since August 2008 and I don’t want to break that streak. I thought I was coming down with something about a month ago, but I fought it off.

In the spirit of cold and flu season, I got my flu shot today!

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Complete with a Tweety bird band-aid. Ha ha! I look kind of scary though.

My work offers flu shots for free, so I jumped at the chance. I guess I have been getting flu shots every year for the last 5 or 6 years. I got the flu a couple times as a kid and once as a teenager and it was miserable enough to convince me I had to do it!

I am not sure yet if I will get the H1N1 shot, if it is even available to me. It’s just so new, I’m afraid of what could go wrong. Hmm…

Do you get a flu shot? Why or why not?

For breakfast this morning, I fueled up on something that has been missing from my diet for quite some time…THE GREEN MONSTER!

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This GM contained: 1 cup of unsweetened original Almond Breeze, 2 big handfuls of spinach, 1 frozen & chopped banana, and 1 tbsp of peanut butter. Yum yum. Oh, how I had missed these 😉

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Mid morning, I ate some nuts and then took a short walk (to get my shot).

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Lunch was some delicious leftover chickpea curry, which might have been even better today!

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After lunch, I had my usual tea and dark chocolate. Then I went to go take my first Exercise Science exam, eek. I think I did ok, but I could’ve done better. Oh well, something to improve on!

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For my afternoon snack, I had some Stonyfield O’Soy yogurt (small package from the 6-pack) with some Ezekiel golden flax cereal on top.

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I chose the small containers because I got 6 for $1.99! Plus this little bitty thing already has 13 grams of sugar, wow.

It was tasty though and I’m comfortable with including it in my diet for now 🙂

After work, I hit the gym hoping to get in a run but all the treadmills were taken! I guess that is a good problem though. At least people are using them.

I ended up doing 30 minutes on the elliptical and it definitely gave me a run for my money! Afterwards, I stretched for almost 15 minutes and it felt so good to take the time and really take care of my body.

When I got home, I was so hungry, so I snacked on some more nuts (no picture). Then I got to work on dinner.

Josh and I had some red potatoes at a cookout on Labor Day and ever since then I’ve been craving them and he was open to trying them at home 🙂

I drizzled 1 tbsp of canola oil and sprinkled salt and pepper on top of the potatoes.

I had a hard time figuring out the cooking part. I cooked them in the oven at 425 for nearly 30 minutes but they weren’t quite done so I ended up microwaving them for a few out of impatience.

But once they were done, they were good!

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In typical Josh and Sarah fashion, he had chicken and I had tofu.

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My plate when it was all finally finished!

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Afterward, I had a piece of dark chocolate.

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I’m off to watch “Dancing with the Stars” which is not a show I usually watch but I have to this season because Chuck Liddell is on! He is one of my favorite UFC fights. I just watched his first dance and it wasn’t too bad…I hope he can hang on a few more weeks 🙂

Aaron Carter looks good too, he was looking a bit rough there a couple years back, I’m glad he seems to have gotten himself together. It was cool to see the old Backstreet Boys in the crowd too!

I better get back to the tv. I also have a cup of peppermint tea in my future.

Good night all!

Cardio-rama!

Per my workout schedule, today was a cardio day, but I wasn’t quite sure what I was in the mood for. I knew I wanted to do some more stairmaster, stepmill or whatever you call it! Which is weird because I used to think that thing was just pure torture. Until I used it a few times for a few minutes and was astounded at the amount of sweat produced…aww yeah!

But I also wanted to use some of the other cardio machines at the gym (it’s way too HOT outside) so I decided to make the rounds. Behold…my 60-minute cardio workout 🙂

1. Stairmaster, 10 minutes (Level 4, Speed 25-35)

2. Rowing machine, 10 minutes (avg speed, 3:30-4:00/500 meters, I think!)

3. Treadmill, 10 minutes (walk/run, 1 minute intervals, walked @ 3.8, ran from 5.0-7.0)

4. Bike, 10 minutes (Level 5, avg speed 80 rpm)

5. Elliptical, 10 minutes (Ramp 6, Level 5)

6. Treadmill, 10 minute walking cooldown (3.5-2.5 mph)

Wooo! I am worn out now. Okay, so not really, haha. But it was a good sweaty workout and I was definitely ready for some lunch when I got back to work 🙂

Hope you all are enjoying the day…it’s Wednesday, another awesome girl’s night potluck coming up tonight!

And it’s my favorite — breakfast for dinner!!