What I Ate Wednesday

It’s been a crazy week this week. I’ve been worked full days at my internship lately (9-to-5ing it!) because one of the other employees is on vacation and we have 1000 booklets to put together. I spent 4 hours yesterday punching holes. It’s just as exciting as it sounds. I won’t complain too much though, I could definitely use the extra money.

Fitness:

Thursday: Up early for a LiveFit leg workout before work! I love getting in a workout before leaving for work, but I don’t always fall asleep early enough for a 5:30 wake up call. I suck at going to bed early, I’m like the little kid, I hate naps too.

Friday: LiveFit back and shoulders workout and a 2.25 mile run on the treadmill. My legs were feeling amazing, I would have kept going, but I had to meet my parents for dinner. I missed running.

Saturday: Laying on the beach counts as a workout right? Right.

Sunday: Pilates class and a 2.6 mile run. I’m trying to slowly get back up to racing shape. Running feels so good right now  (my foot is starting to feel better) and I am loving running again.

Monday: Rest day, work asked me to stay late, and my boyfriend had the day off work so that squashed workout plans, but I’m okay with that

Tuesday: I woke up at 5 am (who am I?!) for a early morning spin class. Getting my sweat on before dawn. The instructor was so enthusiastic (she was actually the “a day without burpees is like a day without sunshine” instructor, my new favorite) and I left feeling sweaty and refreshed. 6 am workouts won’t be an everyday thing, but it feels good to get in an early workout on occasion. I also had dance class Tuesday night, I only have two classes left! I’m sad about it.

Food:

Breakfast: Same old peanut butter oats, hey I already switched it up once this week, don’t want to get to crazy.

Post-work: I had a few cantaloupe wedges (best workout recovery snack – carby and hydrating all in one), and cottage cheese with peanut butter and cinnamon.

Morning Snack: I snacked on some carrots and cottage while working on booklets at my internship

Lunch: Sauteed kale, baby portobellos and tofu topped with hummus and nutritional yeast and a side of peach. I was hungry after punching holes all morning! I also had some Starbucks French Roast coffee from the break room Keurig. Strong and black, just how I love it.

Afternoon Snack: an unpictured mini Lemon Luna Bar and some curry nuts from my Healthy Surprise box (review for those coming soon!)

Dinner: Scrambled eggs with frozen veggies, topped with nutritional yeast and sriracha. It looks gross but it was quick and easy and I was hungry. On the side I had a sweet potato topped with peanut butter, and more cantaloupe

Post-dance snack: Peach and vanilla green monster! I’m on quite the smoothie kick lately.

Are you an early morning exerciser?

What did you eat on Wednesday (or any day)?

Burnt Out {LiveFit Week 7}

This week was a little rough.

As much as I’ve raved about the LiveFit program I’m honestly starting to get a little burnt out on it.

Don’t get me wrong I still think the program is awesome, but my gym routine is getting a little stale. I have serious gym ADD and get sick of workouts pretty quickly and I think I’m hitting the point where I’m done with strictly lifting weights 6 days a week. I’m starting to dread workouts (not okay) and I’m not as excited about it as I was a the beginning of the program.

Not to mention I’m just straight up tired.

Phase Two has 6 days of workouts with just 1 rest day. Sometimes my body is fine with that, but there are times where I can tell I need a rest day but I don’t want to take a day off because it will throw the program off. Well that’s stupid.

I do still want to complete the program, but I think I’m going to give myself more leeway with it. My plan? If I need a second rest day, no big deal, I’ll take it and pick up my workouts where I left off. If I need some variety I’ll shorten the workout a little so I can take that cycling class I’ve been craving. If my quads feel like they’re going to fall off I’ll just skip those lunges! Okay I still need to do the lunges. I guess. If I have to.

It’s all about finding balance. I don’t want to dread a workout. I want the gym to be fun, not some kind of punishment and sometimes that takes a little re-evaluation.

So far this approach has been working out really well. I went to a wonderful spin class yesterday, and whew, my legs were on fire. It’s been far too long. My butt’s now paying for that one, but it was MUCH needed.

Today I made it to a Zumba class (I even got my mom to come with me! She loved it). I like Zumba because it doesn’t feel like a workout until class ends and you realize you’re drenched in sweat. The instructor was this teeny older lady, who was really cute but had no rhythm. Not ideal, but she was still a lot of fun. And she played Mambo No. 5, it’s been a while since I heard that one.

Making time for other forms of exercise has definitely left me feeling refreshed and excited to get the gym. I’m ready to keep tackling LiveFit. Week 8 here I come.

How do you get out of a fitness rut?

What’s you’re favorite 90’s/early 2000’s song? I’m feeling nostalgic =)

Lessons Learned Halfway Through LiveFit

I can’t believe I’m halfway done!

I’ve been really enjoying this program (and my new muscles) and it’s been a whole new exercise challenge. Since I’m halfway through, I thought I’d share some lessons I’ve learned in the past 6 weeks.

  1. Use a spotter. Seriously, just do it. I was doing bench presses and got stuck with an embarrassingly little amount of weight on the bar. After an “oh shit, oh shit, oh shit” moment I managed to sit up fine, and someone came to help me (after I had gotten unstuck, my luck) but it was an awkward experience. So yeah, spotters are important. Or at least use the Smith Machine. Don’t be the little girl stuck under the Olympic bar.

    Halp.

  2. The crazy machines aren’t as intimidating as they look. Just suck it up and tackle them. The burn is lovely.
  3. The constipation face helps you lift heavier. Making an unattractive faces makes a difference in the last couple of reps, or at least that’s how I justify it. Jury’s still out on the grunting though.

  4. Lifting heavy makes me feel like a bad ass. I love it. I’ll definitely be incorporating more heavy lifting into my workouts when the program is over.
  5. Even elbow creases sweat. A little TMI, but when you are doing a 90 minute workout in a crowded on a 100+ degree day, you will sweat in places you didn’t know existed.
  6. Lunges are the devil. I hate them, but they are so good for me, and in every leg workout, so I suck it up.

    I. Hate. You.

  7. Progress is incredibly motivating. Well duh. But repeating each round of workouts twice helps me see an improvement from week to week and motivates to keep working at it, even if I’m tired.
  8. Strength Training = Visible Muscles. You have to build muscle to see muscle, who would have thought. After seeing some results from the program, I realized that consistent strength training is the piece of the puzzle that was missing from my workout routine.

I’m excited to keep up the program. It’s getting tough, 90 minute workouts 6 days a week are no joke, but I feel so accomplished every time I finish a workout and I’m seeing some serious progress. I also learn something new with every new workout, and I love that.

Unrelated to LiveFit, but awkward gym moment  of the day: I had on the exact same shirt as another guy at the gym. I mean it was a race, that 20,000 people ran in, but it was still weird.

Have you had any awkward gym moments? IThey happen to me daily, share yours so I’ll feel a little better about it.

Happy Independence Day! (WIAW)

Happy Independence Day! And Wednesday.

Wednesday (actually Tuesday) eats:

Breakfast: Same old, same old. I seriously look forward to my bowl of peanut butter oatmeal. It’s the best part of waking up, better than Folgers, because Folgers is gross. Speaking of coffee I picked up a can of dark roast coffee from Whole Foods the other day and it is quite delicious. And only $5 for about a pound, hooray for finding deals at Whole Paycheck. They are there you just have to hunt them out!

Morning Snack: Dry roasted edamame. This stuff is seriously addictive. I have to portion it out or I’d eat the whole box in one sitting. It’s high in protein too which is always fantastic.

Lunch: I whipped up some more Spah-Geddie to finish off the other half of my spaghetti squash. It takes less than 10 minutes to make if you already have cooked spaghetti squash on hand, which is good because I am a hungry beast when I get home from work.

Afternoon Snack: String cheese! I love pulling the cheese apart, and it reminds me of eating them as a kid. I also had a microwaved sweet potato topped with peanut butter and cinnamon, sooo good. I love peanut butter and sweet potato together. Well actually I love peanut butter with anything.

Post-gym: I had a few too many dips in the peanut butter jar before the gym. Um, peanut butter pre-run is a poor, poor choice. I wasn’t that hungry when I got home but I wanted something small so I had bell pepper strips and carrots with hummus. I love hummus, does anyone not love hummus? I’m convinced no.

Dinner: A (burnt) frittata/omelet thing. I cooked onions, asparagus, spinach, eggplant and garlic, with two eggs poured over top. It got a little burnt on one side but it was still a good protein-packed dinner.

Late Snack: Another string cheese and a couple of nibbles on some watermelon. I’m so glad it’s watermelon season!

And since WIAW is fitness themed this month, I completed day 36 of the LiveFit trainer. It’s a good one! I also ran/walked 3 miles for the cardio portion. My foot is starting to feel better, it’s still a little sore but doing much, much better. Hopefully I’ll be back to my old running self soon.

I usually look forward to a Wednesday yoga class too, but my gym is closed today so I’ll have to do something at home instead!

I don’t know what my plans for the holiday are yet but I hope to do something festive, or at least get some frozen yogurt.

What are your 4th of July plans?

LiveFit Week 5

Whew, Phase 2 is no joke.

This week’s workouts were longer. And added in cardio. Holy cow.

I think I’ve woken up with DOMS everyday this week. I love the challenge but I definitely leave the gym everyday exhausted.

Things I’m loving:

There are still new exercises introduced every week which I love. I get more and more comfortable with the weight room every week and I feel that all these new exercises are giving my body a great new challenge and breaking me out of an exercising rut.

Cardio! I missed cardio, I like that it’s back in my life. I’ve even started easing back into running, and my foot doesn’t seem to be protesting too much. The time off from cardio was nice too though, it made me appreciate getting back into it.

But I didn’t miss you Mr. Treadmill

The supersets are also another great new challenge. I’m feeling the burn on those!

Things that aren’t my favorite:

Phase 2 workouts are lonnnngggg. They take me about 90 minutes on average, and the frequency has been bumped up to 6 days a week. Luckily, I’m not in school right now and I have a three hour work day so I have plenty of time for a long workout, but it would be tough to do while I’m in school. Also 90 minute workouts 3 days a week are a lot. There were a couple of days where I did NOT want to workout, I felt better after getting to the gym, but the thought of a 90 minute can feel so daunting, especially if I’m already tired. Also days like wednesday I completed the leg workout and a yoga class, I was at the gym for 2 hours and 15 minutes and so ready to go home.

I feel like such a gym rat.

The supersets, I know I said I like them, and I do, but it’s really hard to do a superset on two different pieces of equipment in a busy gym without being a total equipment hog. I try to do what I can, and complete another exercise until the equipment is free again, but I’m sure it’s not as effective.

Indoor cardio machines. Not something I hate about the program, but indoor cardio machines are the best way to do the 30 minutes of cardio when it’s 34529874592847 degrees outside. The elliptical is a little mind-numbing. But Paula’s Best Dishes kept me company on the elliptical today, so I can’t complain too much.

Longer workouts means I can eat a butter cake right? Right.

I love Paula Deen, I don’t care what people say about her. And she looks damn good post-weight loss. I secretly want her to be my adopted southern grandma.

So overall this was a tough week. But I plan to keep the program up and enjoy the challenge. Hello new muscles.

“The More You Drink, The Better We Sound”

It’s been a busy (and fun) past couple of days!

Wednesday night my parents and I went to a free concert at Waverly Place. Liquid Pleasure, a local band out of Chapel Hill was playing. The music was pegged as beach music, but actually they played most rock/soft-rock covers, neither of which is really my style of music, but they still sounded good.

Their motto throughout the night was “The more you drink, the better we sound”. I didn’t get to test that one out because I was not about to pay $4 for a tiny cup of wine. I spent my $4 at the Whole Foods salad bar instead. Much better choice.

It was really sunny and I didn’t think to bring sunglasses. Not a smart move on my part. I also thought that because it was only going to be 85 degrees (instead of 95+) jeans would be okay. Wrong. I was dying. At least I didn’t get sunburnt?

When my eyes started hurting I moved on to attempting to take artsy pictures of inanimate objects. Hey Red Solo Cup.

And when I needed a break from the heat I walked around Whole Foods for a little bit, they had some really beautiful flowers outside.

Thursday afternoon my mom and I went to the Farmer’s Market! I would just like to take a minute and thank Wake County for having a farmer’s market that is open 7 days a week. The perks of living in an agricultural state. It’s made me a little spoiled.

I left my camera in my dad’s car so I didn’t get to take any pictures, which was a shame because it wasn’t very crowded that day. But I’m sure my mom was glad to have an extra set of helpful hands instead of having to wait for me to take 10 pictures of a squash. She’s a good sport.

We left with a good haul of produce! Peaches, raspberries, sweet potatoes, collard greens, eggplant, zucchini, summer squash, corn, cantaloupe, watermelon and beets. All for $30. Have I mentioned I love the farmer’s market?

Thursday night my mom and I went hunting for my grandmother’s old Vitamix in our garage. There are rumors there’s one up there and I can have it if I can dig it out. I won’t rest until I find it! Except I did because it was 103 degrees outside. I’ll be back when it cools down! I did find a dehydrator though! I left it out there for the time being because it’s massive and I don’t know where to put it yet, and an ice cream maker. How did I not know that my grandmother had all these awesome kitchen appliances?

Friday my mom and I grabbed lunch at Sweet Tomatoes. I love Sweet Tomatoes because this happens:

Salad Heaven.

When a salad bar doesn’t charge by weight I have to take advantage. I feel really bad for whoever gets behind me and line because I have to stop at every vegetable. They give me plenty of evil stares too. Health-freak problems.

Both plates were demolished and soooo good. Also, please note my mom’s salad in the background, it looks measly in comparison.

This morning I headed to the gym (after 8.5 hours of glorious sleep, I’ve been averaging 6 lately and paying for it) and completed the LiveFit week 5 shoulders workout. I also ran 2 miles on the treadmill which felt AMAZING. I haven’t been running lately because it’s been so hot out (the treadmill kills me) and I’ve had a lot of pain in the top of my right foot and running seems to be aggravating it. My foots has start to feel better so I’m trying to ease back into running because I do miss it and I want to keep my endurance up. It felt pretty good today, but I’m sticking to indoor runs for a while so I can just hop off the treadmill if I have any issues.

For lunch I met my roommate, her boyfriend, and a school friend visiting Raleigh for lunch at Red Robin. I was really excited to see that Red Robin now has two meatless burger options (Morningstar and Boca – though a black bean option would have been yummier) AND gluten-free buns. It makes me excited to see these alternatives at big chain restaurants like Red Robin.

I ordered a Keep It Simple Burger:

Like this except with a Boca patty, lettuce wrap instead of a bun (gluten-free bread was an extra $1, so I went for the cheaper option), no pickles (GROSS)  and fruit instead of fries. Because I like to be complicated. Neither veggie burger option ended up being gluten-free, but I at least avoided the bun. Oh well.

For whatever reason my burger came out completely disassembled. I guess you were supposed to be able to build your own like the picture above? But that doesn’t really work with a lettuce as bun, and they didn’t give me lettuce pieces large enough to eat with the burger. I just cut everything up and ate it like a salad, so it was no big deal, just a little strange.

From there we headed to the mall to look around some. I ended up buying a tank top on clearance, but then realized my debit card was in the card. A good move for forced self-control, so I left with a happy wallet.

I’ve spent the rest of the night catching up on DVRed recordings of the Olympic gymnastics trials. I can’t wait until the Olympics start! Less than a month!

What’s the last concert you went to?

What’s your favorite Olympic sport? I can’t pick, but I love gymnastics (artistic and rhythmic), track and field and all the obscure sports like table tennis (the US trials took place right down the street from me!).

Tuesday Tangents

  1. Biker shorts and neon socks are the next trend in high fashion



    Clearly. You can thank dance class for that delightful outfit. It’s really difficult to take a picture of your own leg.
  2. Speaking of dance classes, I started taking a contemporary dance class at a local studio and I’m loving it. It feels sooo good to be in the studio again. I was missing dance sooo much (especially now that SYTYCD is on again!) and I really miss the studio setting. They push me so much more than the dance professors at school and it does wonders for my technique.
    I’ve probably been dancing longer than most of the kids in the class have been alive and I’m older than the teacher but I don’t care, I just want to dance!
    This week we worked on a combination to this song.
  3. I’ve checked out like 10 books in the past week. It’s completely ridiculous and there’s no way I’ll finish them before they’re due. This is a major problem I have and it happens to me every time I get my hands on my library card. Nerd alert.
    I’m currently reading:
    I had to wait an entire month before there was a copy available. So worth it. I’m LOVING this book so far, which should say something because I HATE science fiction. I need to stop reading it before bed though. Kids fighting to the death doesn’t make for a relaxing bedtime story.

    I’m also reading:

    Polar opposites much?  I snagged this off the cart of books waiting to be shelved and it’s a really interesting read. I really like this approach to health and medicine. It also talks about yoga, bonus. I’ve been trying to incorporate aspects of Ayurveda into my life and I like it so far. I can recap the main highlights when I finish if anyone’s interested.

  4. The Civil Wars are the only band I’ve  listened to all summer. I love them. Check them out if you’re into folksy-ish, alternative-ish stuff. Career as a music critic in my future? Yes.
  5. Folgers is gross. Yuck. Note to self, cheap coffee is cheap for a reason.
  6. I found out my grandmother had a Vitamix and it is currently sitting somewhere in the depths of my garage. WHY WAS I NOT AWARE OF THIS SOONER? Weekend mission: locate the Vitamix.
  7. I bought a Groupon for a rock climbing class and a one week climbing wall pass. I’m sooooo excited to use it! Rock climbing is on my fitness bucket list and I’ve been wanting to do it for forever. And my new LiveFit muscles will help me climb better. I hope.
  8. You can see through my ear!


    I’ve thought about going bigger but I don’t want my internship to hate me. Something tells me big pointy tapers are not appropriate for the workplace. They’re a 2g right now. I don’t know, I’m undecided.

Have you ever stretched your ears? If so how big? I like the look, not too sure about the time/energy/pain of making them much bigger is worth it.

Have you ever been rock climbing? Was it amazing?

What are you currently reading? I love a good book suggestion!

LiveFit Trainer Week 4 Recap

I can’t believe I’m already done with phase 1!  I’m really excited to start phase 2, cardio, oh how I’ve missed you!

Week 4 is basically a repeat of week 3. It was nice to get a chance to work on my form and try to increase my weight slightly, but I did get a little bored. I do have a serious case of exercise ADD and I’m enjoying learning new exercises so much that I just get antsy.

My thoughts this week:

  • Tricep exercises are INTENSE. I could barely lift my arms after tricep/chest day, wimpy.
  • It feels really good to see improvements from week to week, it keeps me motivated to keep trucking along
  • My face does weird things when I do Bent Over Barbell Rows

    Image

    cute.

Pros and Cons of Phase 1

  • Pros: the program did a great job of easing me into strength training and it didn’t let the weight room get overwhelming, watching my progress is incredibly motivating and I have gained the confidence to hold my own in the weight room with the grunting men
  • Cons: it was nice to get a break from cardio but I still miss it, and lunges are the devil.
Image

Pure Evil.

I completed the first workout of Phase 2 today and whew, Phase 2 will be intense, but I’m excited still about it! I’m going to be so sore tomorrow.

Now, I’m going to go watch the Olympic Trials. I’m beyond excited for the Olympics this year. Only 32 more days!

Any good workouts this week? Share! I love hearing about other’s workouts!

Live Fit Week 3 Recap.

This week was awesome! It’s been my favorite so far, I seem to be saying this every week but just go with it.

The workouts got 2983427x harder this week. It killed me a little, but I loved it anyway.

Week 3 workouts were increased from 4 days a week to 5 days, with a few more exercises thrown into each workout. The week also focused  on lifting heavier, reps for each exercise were lowered from 12 to 10, while the weight increased from 60% of max effort to 80%.

Workouts this week were no joke. I know the workouts will only get more challenging from here on out (and I’m excited for it!), but I definitely felt sufficiently challenged this week. The past two weeks were focused more on proper form and getting your body acclimated to a consistent lifting routine, which makes sense, but there were days I left the gym wishing my workout felt a little more intense, I definitely didn’t have that complaint this week.

My legs were sore for 3 days after Monday’s leg workout. Seriously. But I already mentioned those awesome single leg deadlifts.  My legs were on fiyah. Along with the killer new deadlift exercise, the program continued to introduce a lot of great new exercises this week. The upper body workouts even got me on the incline and decline benches in the manly section of the weight room. It might sound lame, but I was proud of myself for that, I didn’t modify the exercises because I was intimidated by that section of the gym, I sucked it up and did it, and it was a gratifying experience. Grunting muscles heads can’t keep me out of the weight room.

The I was most excited about this week was seeing results. They weren’t anything huge, but I’m beginning to feel more tone and see some noticeable differences (if I didn’t ruin it with the poor eating I did this weekend – oops). This is a big deal for me, I’ve been working hard to gain some visible muscle tone, have failed pretty miserably at it and I’ve been very discouraged by it. I eat clean, I workout, why am I not seeing results? A lack of weight training apparently. You have to build muscle to see muscle, duh Lea.

Welcome to the Gun Show. Or maybe not. (source)

Being able to see some progress has been so motivating, and I can’t wait to start this week’s workout!

Thursday Thoughts

  • Walking through the grocery store in sweaty biker shorts post-gym sesh is awkward. People stare. Especially when you’re lugging around a gallon of soy milk. Don’t care.
  • I got a comforter for my apartment next year for $9. Thank you Target, I love you.
  • Cats are cute:



    But they sure do poop a lot. I spent Wednesday morning volunteering at my local SPCA. The cats were adorable, and friendly, but I cleaned 20 litter boxes by myself. I then considered bathing in a pool of hand sanitizer. But it was for a good cause, so I won’t complain too much, they’re cute little faces make it worth it!
  • I need these in my life:

    Wine bottle bow ties. Genius. Who thought wine drinking could get any classier?
  • I hate Jamie Eason, but I really love her. This week’s LiveFit workouts have been killing me in the best way possible.

    Single leg deadlifts kill me every time. Julie mentioned them last week. It makes muscles burn that I didn’t even know I had. But they are secretly my favorite exercise of the day, apparently I’m some sort of masochist. I did them on Monday and my legs are STILL sore today. They are no joke.

  • Today marks a month at my internship! I’m still learning lots! I don’t talk about what I do there too often because I had to sign confidentiality agreements and what not, but I’ve gotten to work on a huge variety of projects. When I got the internship I was a little wary, because the business is fairly small, but that turned out to be great because they treat me like a real employee. I’m really enjoying the experience!
  • Speaking of design, I’ve been hard core nerding out on some graphic design podcasts lately. I could listen to people talk about logos, Adobe and business cards for hours. Nerd alert.


     The Deeply Graphic Designcast is my current favorite. The cover a huge variety of design topics and they give a lot of great tips and resources for designers. If you’re looking for some design inspiration/resources/tips or if you just need to relish in your inner design nerd, check them out.

  • I’m leaving for Spartanburg, South Carolina for the weekend tomorrow to visit my grandfather. I’m excited to see my grandfather, but there’s no internet there. Help.
  • I’m officially re-addicted to yoga, I can’t get enough. More on that tomorrow.

Well I’m off to bed, have a good night!

Listen to any good podcasts lately?
I’m on a serious podcast kick at the moment, and I’m open to suggestions if anyone has one they love! Any and all topics are welcome.