Tag Archives: fitness

#holidaysweat #sweatpink challenge starts today!

sweat pink holiday 2015

Want to stay healthy through the holidays? The #holidaysweat challenge starts today! Each day, we’ll be challenged to be active and eat as many freggies (fruits and veggies) possible.  The fine folks at fitapproach.com will send prompts and ideas each day (so go sign up!). I’ll be sharing them here too. Here’s a sneak peek at week 1!

Use these prompts to get you going each day! Share your reponse anywhere and everywhere: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, your blog… at home!

Monday, November 9: What’s your minutes goal this week? How will you get there?! #pranastyle @prana #holidaysweat @runtothefinish @fitapproach #sweatpink

Tuesday, November 10: Show us your sweaty style! What’s your favorite workout outfit or gear? #pranastyle @prana #holidaysweat @runtothefinish @fitapproach #sweatpink

Wednesday, November 11: Show us how you take your workout outside when it’s cold (or even snowing!) #pranastyle @prana #holidaysweat @runtothefinish @fitapproach #sweatpink

Thursday, November 12: Squats? Pushups? Planks? What’s your favorite strengthening move? #pranastyle @prana #holidaysweat @runtothefinish @fitapproach #sweatpink

Friday, November 13: FREE FRIDAY! Show us what you’re up to today… sweating, eating, cooking, you name it! #pranastyle @prana #holidaysweat @runtothefinish @fitapproach #sweatpink

Sweating pink and re-evaluating goals

NEW-SPA-badge

Because positivity is one of my top 5 strengths, I’ll start by sharing some happy news … I’ve been named a Sweat Pink Ambassador! The SPA program is run by the good folks at Fit Approach, and it’s another example of using social media for good in encouraging women to stay active and fit. (Guys, I’m sure you’ll enjoy the tips too!)

It was good timing for this to happen as I’ve needed a push to refocus on fitness. That was apparent on my run this morning with Fort Bend Fit. I’ve been following the “Little Half” program, designed to get those of us who started in the summer with the marathon trainers, but have been sidetracked, to catch back up.

I showed up for Little Half 2 weeks ago for a great 2 mile run. I felt optimistic about running a half marathon in late January with 16 weeks to train. And then last weekend, first I didn’t feel well on Saturday, and my sweet furchild Ava got sick and that ditched the plans to make up my run Sunday.

So, today’s 4 miles wasn’t pretty. I did my usual 1/1 run/walk for 24 minutes, and noticed a slight ache in my calf…and switched to walking for fear the dreaded hamstring injury was rearing its head (remember my injury went into the insertion point in my calf). I walked for 12 minutes, then ran/walked again for another 8, then walked again until running 2 minutes at the “finish line.”

IT. WAS. TOUGH. And it made me realize a few things:

  1. Only working out once a week isn’t working for me.The last 2 months of my life have been a roller coaster. A big project at work, and beginning to prep for a move when my house build is completed have been taking up time. Plus still staying active as a presenter in my industry…and I haven’t had as much free time. I know that making time, even 10 minutes a day, for more activity will help me tackle all this more easily, and I just need to DO IT.
  2. Fitness is lost fast, and it affects me more than when I was younger.Even just 4 years makes a difference. Because 4 years ago, I was only running once a week as I was navigating a separation and divorce. But I was still able to train for that first half. But 4 years older, that’s just not hacking it for me. I can no longer scrape by with one super workout a week.
  3. I may need a new, short term fitness goal. This is the biggie … realizing that right now, with all the other factors in my life, a half marathon may not be the right goal for me. As much as I want to do a third half, so I can pursue a full before I turn 40 in less than 2 years, this may not be the time for that. Since I’ve gotten so far off track in my programming, it might make more sense to run a series of 5k to 10k distances in the coming months. That gives me smaller goals that work better with a crunched schedule, and keeps me running. I really hate to give up on my training program, but it doesn’t make sense to keep after something and take the joy out of it because I’m struggling.

I want to hear from you … when have you re-evaluated a goal, and how did this turn out for you?

Rah rah for routines

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about routines. Or more accurately, the lack of one my life seems to have had in the area of nutrition and exercise.

Sure I’ve celebrated my wins in these areas, but it’s just as easy to let life get in the way and get them off track as anyone else.

As a summer approaches life for me tends to get a little more routine, and I’m okay with that. As much as I enjoy being a busybee and on the go, I also like the sense of some structure in my day-to-day life.

I have a list taped to the inside of my medicine cabinet which lists morning and evening routines. This list was created along time ago, before I had a dog and when I still had a fish. Needless to say, for those reasons alone it needs a little revising!

I’ve spent some time pondering which routines have worked for me in the past, and which ones have not, trying to figure out where to go from here. One routine that I revisited yesterday was my Sunday ritual: make sure to get a full night’s sleep, read the paper in the morning, workout at the gym, grocery shop and cook, and of course attend Mass. It was the first time in weeks I had executed all this, and it felt great!

Some other routines I’ve contemplated revisiting include everything from time outdoors on Saturdays, to the really basic concept of putting on workout clothes the minute I get home so I have no excuse but to do something active before I go to bed.

I know I’m more successful the more I can stick to basic routines. Things like making sure I pack snacks for the office, or booking time on my calendar for a workout, make me more successful in putting my health as a priority.

So, which routines work for you, and which would you like to add into your life that you aren’t doing now? I want to hear from you!

My year with the Fitbit

Technically, I’ve owned my Fitbit Flex (and Aria scale) for 18 months, but 2014 was the first full year I owned it, and I had set out at the beginning of the year to hit 10k steps a day. So, how did I do?

  • # steps: 3,072,942 (I had to estimate the day Fitbit 1 died, resulting in my buying Fitbit 2)
  • Average steps: 8419/day (a little shy of my goal, but still decent)
  • Best month for steps: January (I averaged 10,259 steps/day and hit my 10k 74% of the days this month)
  • Worst month for steps: November (7590 steps/day average. Interesting as this was the month I went to DC and walked a lot but it’s also when my injury flared back up. Interesting to note that I started sliding in July and didn’t bring it back up until December).
  • Peak of my weight loss: August (On 8/23, I was down 12.5 lbs for the year. I ended the year still down 7.1!)
  • Peak of my fat % loss: around my birthday! (Seriously. August 29 had me at 30% fat, down 3.4% for the year. Nice early present! I ended the year down 1.9%)

So, what are my takeaways?

  • It’s nice to have something tracking my stats. The Fitbit often told me what I already knew on days I wasn’t active. And it is encouraging to see the dots light up on a day I can’t make it to the gym but am on the go.
  • Having a goal helped me make more progress in a year than I would have probably made without one. So I didn’t make 10k steps a day, but I did achieve some good fitness!
  • You can make up some for a bad day on a really good day, but even consistency is better. It stinks feeling like you are playing catch up.
  • It’s time to take it to the next level. I’ve already hit 10k on 10 of 24 days this month. I’d like to hit that goal at least 50% of the time.

So if you have a Fitbit or other device, what results are you seeing?

40 days of fitness-are you in?

… and it will be January 1, 2015! Can you believe it?

I got out for a walk today, my first in a week…I’ve been resting again since an achy hamstring on my run two weeks ago and on my walking around DC last week. It felt good, really what I needed to start making fitness a priority again.

I’ve felt a little lost the last few months since my birthday (where I was my lowest weight I had been in years). Between a few trips for work and fun, plus dealing with the drama of getting a new car, it’s been easy to let the healthy eating and exercise habits slip, especially with an on again, off again injury. Sure, I am still down a good 8 lbs for the year, and I’m proud of that. But I haven’t been giving my health the priority it deserves. I’m human, after all!

Then it hit me … 8 days left in this month + 31 in December + New Year’s Day = 40 days. If I could just be active every day between now and then, I would be starting the year off at least where I am now, stats-wise, but likely feeling a lot better. I know when I exercise regularly, my energy level improves, and I sleep better too.

Also, it’s a good strategy to employ with the holidays and the parties to come. Because I’m going to want to partake. And I’ll feel less guilty if I’ve been active that day. I’m also going to do what I can to make better food choices outside holiday meals (those are only 3 days of those!). On days I have parties, I’ll make sure to eat really well the rest of the day to prepare for the treats.

I’m going to aim for 30 minutes of activities a day. That’s pretty easy to squeeze in, even if I have to break it up into several short walks to fit it in.

So, who’s with me?

More new gear: Lishy Bands

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Sooo cute! And comfy!

I’ve never been a big fan of headbands. They either slip off my fine hair, or pinch behind the ears. But as I’ve been growing my hair out, ponytails are becoming heavy (and not great for hair anyway, long term).

Shout out to my buddy Susan, who introduced me to the DC Rainmaker site and more specifically, reviews by The Girl, including her annual review of must use gear. It steered me to my new Camelbak and Spibelt (though I got a different CB model). And that’s where I read about Lishy Bands.

Having joined Etsy as a shopper within the past few months, I was excited to check out another shop there. The headbands are super cute! it was hard to just pick one or two to test them out. I was also encouraged by the promise of no slipping. 

The shop encourages you to measure your head to see if the standard band will fit you (it worked for me), and if not, you can order a different length. In fact, like many other shops, you can place a custom order, which would be awesome for a sports team or other group.

I’m happy to report I tested my bands out in 2 situations: a full day at work (the chevron one was too cute to wait for a workout!), and a training session at the gym. In both cases, it stayed perfectly put … and during my session there was ab work, so it survived laying on the mat!

Before and after workout…still about in the same place!

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The only slight negative is I’m not used to having my hair down during a workout, but I’m happy with the performance of the product and will definitely order more!