Tag Archives: fresh start

Things have changed…

1 Jul

As you can see, it’s been quite some time since I have posted.  That is because everything in my life has changed.  My job, my home, my hobbies, even my hair – yep, I’m going blonde (no pics to post right now, but I’ll work on that)!

I wore that uniform well!  :)

I wore that uniform well! 🙂

First things first, I am officially a civilian now – my tour with the U.S. Coast Guard has ended.  When I joined the military I was sure I would be a lifer.  Both of my parents retired from the military and I thought I would follow suit.  But, of course, life has a way of changing plans but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.  While I may miss the Coast Guard sometimes, the decision to get out was one that my husband and I decided upon as a family and we know it was the best for us.  He will remain active duty, which leads me to the next BIG change.

Cali

We’ve moved to SoCal!  HOLLA!  The hubs got stationed in San Diego which could not have worked out better.  We are out of the cold and snow of Sault Sainte Marie and into the sun and fun of California.  While I always considered myself to be an East Coast girl, I definitely think I can get used to living here.  We found ourselves a beautiful home that is TWICE the size of the one we had in Michigan and we are enjoying filling it up.

medifast

Image courtesy of http://www.medifast1.com

The third big change is that I have started a new job already.  While in the Coast Guard I found my passion for fitness and started working as a personal trainer.  As a trainer a majority of my clients were weight loss clients.  I absolutely loved being a part of the weight loss process because I know what an impact weight loss can play on health, happiness and overall quality of life. So, I decided to take my passion for fitness and weight loss and my knowledge of diet and nutrition  (70-80% of weight loss is nutrition, not exercise, in case you weren’t aware) and go to work for Medifast as a weight control counselor.  I typically wouldn’t get behind a weight loss plan like this because I think everyone should learn proper nutrition, however that is what this company does.  Yes, you have meal replacements, but we also teach you how to choose and prepare healthy and nutritious meals.  Plus, once you hit your goal we don’t just show you the door.  We transition you back into eating your own foods and we have a year-long maintenance process to make sure your weight loss is life long and you don’ just yo-yo as most people tend to do.  (This is not an advertisement for Medifast, I’m just explaining the aspects of what I like about the program.  It is not for everyone and I will never try to  pitch or sell this product on my blog.  Likely, this will be the only mention of Medifast just so I can explain the changes in my life.)

Anyway, moving on…change number four and probably the biggest, most exciting change for me.   I’ve joined CrossFit!  We didn’t have CrossFit available in the Soo so it wasn’t an option until now.  Ever since I saw my first competition on TV I have been dying to do it.  Right now I am in week two of fundamentals.  You have to do 8 classes to learn the basic movements of CrossFit before you can do the WOD (Workout of the Day).  At the end of this week I will be able to go daily, 5:30 am and just rock out classes.  I love, love, love it.  This, you will  be hearing A LOT about!

I think that covers all the big changes.  I will be posting more often now that I have a daily routine set in stone.  Thanks for being patient and for coming back!

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Are you kidding me?!?!

16 Nov

Have I really not posted anything in over a month?  How have you guys let me get away with it?  How have I let myself get so off track.  I know, I know you all must be so tired of hearing about how I fall off the wagon and how this time I’m serious about starting over.  Well, I’m not going to do that this time.  I have given myself a new 7 week goal (ending on New Years Eve) but I’m not going to sit here and talk about how great I’m going to do this time.  Lemme tell you why.  It’s simple…life just gets in the way.  I realize there are people who make fitness their lives and I hope to one day be able to do that.  However, that just ain’t happening right now. 

I have two jobs now and that takes up a lot of time.  Granted, one of those is actually as a trainer working at the gym, but that’s not the point.  Since I started working there, I look at the gym like a job.  Do you go into work when you don’t have to?  Does anyone?  I doubt it.  Even though I love my job and I love working out, if I don’t have clients I tend to want to go home and relax now.  I have to get myself out of this habit.  To help myself a bit with this, I have started working out more at home and during my lunch breaks at my day job.  This is definitely doing what I hoped it would, but I’ve still gotta get my ass back in the gym. 

Food has also been a big problem.  I don’t even know where to begin with this, but lets just say it’s no good.  Since I started this 7 week goal I have been doing better, but man am I having some serious cravings.  Last night I would’ve thrown children into traffic for a Whopper, but I didn’t give into it.  I went home and made this:

That is beef fajita meat and my most favorites of side dishes creamed spinach (just add light swiss laughing cow to cooked spinach and voila!).  It was no Whopper but it made me feel a whole hell of a lot better than a burger would have.

I also made sure that I stocked up on healthy foods on my last shopping trip.  Take a look at this basket and be jealous.  Go ahead, I won’t tell anyone. 🙂  Eggs, veggies, fruits, brown rice, and some more delicious yummies.

I also went to the “bulk” store and bought a giant pork loin for less than $16.  Out of it I was able to get two 4-oz portions, eleven 5-oz portions, seven 6-oz portions, and one 8-oz portion.  That’s a whole lotta pork, booyah!!  And I know it looks like a lot of fat, but I cut that out, so don’t judge me!

And finally, I started back up with my motivational countdown post-its.  These are easily one of the best things to keep me on track.  When I can see daily how well I am or am not doing, then I am able to hold myself more accountable.  My bestie has actually joined in with me.  She’s taking even days and I’m taking odd.  Here are our post-its for the first couple days.  (Today is day 46, BTW.)

So, here is where I am right now.  I am going to try really damn hard to keep myself in check.  I am going to try really damn hard to survive the holidays without expanding my waistline.  I am going to try really hard, but I am not going to punish myself for any missteps I may take.  This is probably the worst time of the year to start to make changes, but if you keep putting things off, then you will never start.  I figure if two days over the next 45 (those days being Thanksgiving and Christmas) I have bad food then it isn’t the end of the world.  I will consider those my cheat days and just pick myself up, dust myself off and get back on track.  We’ll see how this goes.  I have to keep reminding myself that the best gift I can give myself for Christmas is a better me so here’s wishing me and all of you success!

TGIF A Week in Review

5 Oct

It’s Friday!  Woohoo!  It’s been a busy week.  I have been doing some major work towards my certification and preparing to take on new clients at the gym.

First things first, certification is a bitch!  I love it and I love all the things that I’m learning but phew, it’s a lot!  Check out some of the cheat sheets I’ve made for myself so far:

When I’m not trying to learn the central nervous system, skeletal system, muscular system, etc… I’m trying to learn how exactly to do program design.  I’ve had some really great resources and people who are more than willing to help.  It’s stressful but exciting.  This is my new career and I’m so glad to get the opportunity to get my foot in the door.  Here are two of the plans I put together this morning.  One is for a client looking to do strength training and the other is for a client looking to lose weight and gain lean muscle.  Feel free to give me any suggestions or critiques, but be gentle, I’m new to this.

Oh, and duh, no trainer would be complete without some sweet ass gym gear and a stop watch so I stopped by JC Penney’s and the local sporting goods store to pick up these bad boys.  Best part is the pink one is not only super cute but it also supports breast cancer awareness.  Gotta love that!

So that’s all the good stuff going on this week, but let me get a little personal and a little real on two separate topics.  First, I cannot have carbs at dinner. I just can’t.  Veggies don’t count, I’m referring to starchy carbs and grains.  Does anyone else run into this problem? Sometimes you just don’t feel like cooking dinner and Subway is what tends to happen when we don’t feel like cooking or just don’t have time to make anything.  Sure, sure I could get a healthy 6″ sub, but c’mon, that just ain’t happening!  I need a giant foot long sub and lets face it, mayonnaise is amazing and my sandwich will always be smothered with it.  So, I was not too thrilled with my weigh-ins this week.  Here are my morning motivation post it notes and you can see that there was no weight loss progress over the four-day period.  😦

It’s ok though, I’ll survive.  I just have to realize that this is a process and there is no quick fix.  So I got lazy one night.  Do I sit and beat myself up about it or just make sure I eat right and get back on track?  I think I’ll take the latter.

Now, onto personal topic number too…and I do mean personal.  Does anybody else find that they get a little um constipated stopped up when they are eating clean?  I know I do.  Sometimes I don’t notice when a couple days go by but earlier this week it was just  a liiiiiiiiiittle uncomfortable.  Well, I was in the natural food market picking up my ezekiel bread and realized that I had no cash.  It’s a $10 minimum for debit cards there so I started walking around trying to find something that I not only wanted but needed.  The hubs recently started drinking hot tea so I thought I’d be a doll and pick him up some new tea to try.  That is when I stumbled upon this gift from above.

OMG!   I love it.  It tastes good.  It’s easy to drink.  It works like a charm.  I had a cup of tea Monday night before bed and another Tuesday morning with breakfast.  That was all it took and I was…ahem, back to normal.  This company makes tons of different types of teas and you can order them online here if you can’t find them in a store near you.  I’m really looking forward to my next visit so I can try one of the other types.  Maybe next time I’ll actually get one for the hubby.  It’s about the least I could do considering he brought me home flowers just for being a good wife.  Man, I’m a lucky girl!  See…

Hmmm….I went over studying, prepping, my dinner boo boo, poo-tea and how wonderful my husband is, so I think I covered my week.  Here’s hoping for a good weekend and hopefully another post on Sunday.  I swear, I swear I’ll really start getting on here more!  It will happen.  I just have to remember to take more pictures because lets be honest, no one wants to hear me rant and rave and not be visually stimulated.  So, until next time, have a great weekend and get your asses in the gym. 🙂

Week 2 and Going Strong

25 Sep

Ok,  I’m back! That’s right baby. I’m into week 2 of my new 6 week goal and I’m going strong, feeling good, and seeing progress. The best part is that I got my diet back on track.  Food has always, and probably will always, be my best friend as well as my worst enemy so getting myself back into good eating habits is a major step in the right direction.  Because I’ve been doing so well, I thought I’d share some of the delish dishes that have been gracing my pallette this week.

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Evening snack of plain Greek yogurt with some frosted mini wheats crumbled on top.  Something I came up with to curb a sweet craving I was having.  Worked like a charm!

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Lunch at work one day consisted of some mesquite pork, peppered broccoli and quinoa that I cooked with chicken broth.  If you have never cooked quinoa with a flavored broth, I highly suggest it.  I couldn’t stop eating it once it was made.  A couple days I added some chopped up tomato, red onion and green pepper and it was to die for!

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Jamie Easons Turkey Meatloaf Muffins (recipe found here) and creamed spinach made with laughing cow cheese.  These meatloaf muffins are a life saver.  I can have them for dinner, lunch or a protein filled snack.  I make them with a mini-muffin tin which make 24 rather than a regular muffin tin which creates 12.  It’s just a preference. 

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Crab and avocado salad.  This one was a complete fluke.  I was hungry, didn’t feel like cooking and just threw some things I already had together.  Awesome and super easy.  Since the crab is so flavorful, I didn’t even add dresssing, although I bet something lemony would’ve been a great addition.

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On top of all the amazing food I’ve been eating, I have also gone back to a motivational trick I used before.  I set myself a goal of 6 weeks and created a countdown.  I used some post it notes I had laying around to help me keep track. On each note I put the day it is ( day 1, day 5,day 30,etc…) how many days are left until I reach my goal, a motivational quote to inspire me, and what exercise I’ll be doing that day.  I also like to write down my weight each morning. I know,  I know,  you aren’t supposed to weigh yourself everyday but I really love seeing my progress, even if its just an ounce.  Here are a couple examples.

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I’m going to try to get back in the habit of posting on here and if nothing else I’ll put up my daily post it notes so you and I can track my progress. I’ve got 5 weeks left in the military challenge. Thus far all I have done is gain weight so I’m really going to have to kick my butt in gear to see some results. With my countdown and motivational system in place and my renewed enthusiasm I think I can really make it happen! 🙂  Wish me luck!!!

The MOST amazing Mushroom & Pepper omelet…ever!

15 Aug

Alright, recipe two coming at you.  This is one adapted from Jillian Michael’s book “Making the Cut” and it is one of the best breakfasts ever.

Ingredients:

1/4 c onion, chopped (red is better, but white will do)

1/4 of a green pepper chopped

1 c mushrooms, chopped

1/4 c cherry tomatoes, chopped

5 eggs (4 egg whites and 1 whole egg)

1 oz gouda cheese, sliced

1 tbsp light sour cream

What to do:

Step 1, get a giant glass of wine and enjoy the process.  Oh wait, it’s 6:30 am isn’t it?  Ok fine, maybe a cup of joe?  Now that that is settled, moving on to the actual cooking.

Spray pan with non-fat non-stick cooking spray, throw in veggies and saute.  Usually takes about 5 minutes to look like so:

 

While veggies are cooking whisk together 4 egg whites and 1 full egg.  Once veggies are done, move them to a plate and cover to keep warm. Use a wet paper towel to quickly wipe out the inside of pan, re-spray with cooking spray and add eggs.  Let the eggs heat up until they are almost fully cooked and add veggies to one half of the egg base.

 

I know what you are thinking – that is a hell of a lot of veggies for just one omelet, but bear with me and I promise it will not disappoint. 

Flip the side with no veggies over to create your omelet and let it cook just a smidge longer.  Carefully move your omelet to a plate and top with slices of gouda.  It might take a minute to melt so the thinner the slices the better.

 

I know, I know, that sucker is HUGE!  Just calm your horses.  Cut that mamma-jamma in half.  Store one half in the fridge for tomorrow (yes, that’s right, it’s actually really good re-heated) and top the other half with sour cream.  If you are feeling feisty go ahead and add some chopped chives or cilantro or whatever fresh herbs you may desire.  I prefer mine without, but have tried a couple different options.  You’re end product should look a little something like this:

 

You now have a delicious, healthy breakfast to start your day off right.  And go ahead and sleep in an extra 10 minutes tomorrow because you’ve got that breakfast covered too!

Nutritional Info : 175 calories, 9.1g fat, 7g carbs, 18.4g protein

Mini-Challenge Day Two

15 Aug

This is what I saw several times this morning:

Snooze…the best and worst thing to ever happen to alarm clocks.  I set my alarm for 5am, and I am pretty sure swear I had every intention of waking up at 5 on the dot.  But damn is that snooze button enticing!  Get up and work out or stay in my nice warm bed, snuggled with the pups and sleep another hour.  How can you not want to just stay and snuggle these two adorable faces???

Not sure what I was watching when I snapped this pic, but check out that chicks face on the tv. Cracks me up every time!

I did it though.  I got up and I completed another 45 minute incline walk on my treadmill this morning.  Nothing too intense, incline at 7 or 8 (I can’t remember) and speed at 3.0.  Hey, I said WALK!  Don’t judge me.  Trust that I was drenched in sweat at the end.  I will say that this mornings workout was much easier than Monday’s, mostly because I had my favorite cardio buddy with me – my Kindle.  Lemme tell you, if you don’t have a Kindle Fire, runs out and gets you one!  It is the best $200 ever spent.  I love to read and this lets me have all my books all the time.  I love to put it on an elliptical or treadmill and just read away while I’m working out.  It eliminates looking at the timer every 1.5 minutes to see how much longer I have and it’s so much more engaging than just watching tv or a movie.  BEST. INVENTION. EVER. 

But anyway, this isn’t an Amazon ad.  My point here is that I have two days down of my personal mini-challenge and that kicks ass!  Booyah!  Now I gotta start thinking of what next weeks mini-challenge will be.  I’m thinking BodyRocking each morning…what do you think?

Mini-Challenge Day One

13 Aug

I’m not gonna lie, this morning was a struggle. 

I could not fall asleep last night to save my life.  Around 10:30 I took a unisom and that finally kicked in about 11:30.  11:55 my dogs woke me up to go outside. *sigh* The rest of the night I was sort of in and out.

My alarm went off at 5am so that I could get started bright and early for my week 2 challenge to myself.  My immediate reaction?  SNOOZE!  5:09 my alarm goes off again.  My reaction this time?  Set alarm for 5:50 and decide to go back to bed.  But then this little voice inside my head started saying, nay yelling, “IT’S THE FIRST DAY OF YOUR OWN CHALLENGE AND YOU ARE ALREADY FAILING!!!”  What was I thinking?  People don’t get the bodies of their dreams by hitting the snooze button, do they?  So I pulled my tired ass out of bed, brushed my teeth, slapped on my sneakers and hit the treadmill.  45 minute incline walk (which felt more like 45 hours) was completed.  And, I felt great afterwards.  In fact, for getting as little sleep as I did last night, I’m pretty energetic today.

I’m proud of myself for kicking my own ass.  Hard work really does pay off (aka sleeping in until 6 tomorrow)!  Does anyone else set mini-goals for themselves? 

Week 1 Done – New Challenge Accepted

12 Aug

I did it.  I’ve completed week 1 without the tiniest bit of a slip. Oh, did I mention that I joined the Military Challenge on BodyBuilding.com?  Because I did.  And, I’m determined! I’ve been eating clean, keeping up with workouts, and even had time to fit in some homework.

Today I woke up with a little extra motivation and decided to make use of the treadmill that sits in my home gym. This gym includes a treadmill, dip station, sandbag training system, light dumbbells, yoga mat, ball, and band, resistance bands, jump rope, E-Z bar, punching bag and I’m sure I’m forgetting a few things.  It’s a very small room, but it holds a lot.  A lot that NEVER gets used.  I thought having all of this stuff at home would make it impossible to not work out.  No excuses when it’s all right there in front of you, right?  Wrong!  Most of the time the door to the gym is shut and we never think twice about it.  Ugh, what a waste. (Here’s a pic – disregard the awful wood walls, we rent.)

I have decided that this week I am going to give myself an extra challenge.  Nothing major, but a small goal that I can accomplish and feel good about.  I’d like to wake up early and do a 45 minute low intensity incline walk on my treadmill at least 3x’s this week.  I’m going to shoot for Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  I hate getting up before I have to so this won’t be easy but I think the pros will definitely outweigh the cons. I need to start using this gym so challenge accepted!!!

12 Ways To Better Eating: The Mental Approach

8 Aug

As I do, I was scouring the Internet last night looking for motivation.  I stumbled across the website www.cutandjacked.com and found some really interesting articles.  I think it’s pretty apparent that food is my downfall so of course I’m always looking for new recipes, healthy alternatives, and advice for clean eating.  There was an article called 12 Ways To Better Eating: The Mental Approach.  I found this article really informative and suggest anyone on the road to success check it out.  But, if you aren’t interested in reading the whole thing, here are a few highlights:

1.  Setting goals – set present, short term and long term goals.  Trying to do everything all at once can be overwhelming.  Especially if you are someone like me who has diet-commitment-issues.

2.  Have realistic expectations – you need to decide on a plan that is going to work with you, your current schedule, and your budget.  If you don’t, you will be unable to follow through with the diet and revert back to old habits.

3. Be proactive – make sure you don’t get yourself in a situation where you can make excuses.  Know where you are going to be throughout the day and plan your meals around that.  For example, if your job takes you on the road, make sure you pack healthy snacks like almonds or fruit.  Don’t allow yourself to have only the option of fast food.

4. Be consistent – people thrive when they have routines, so try to eat around the same time every day and create healthy habits.

5. Be flexible – yes I realize this sort of contradicts the previous statement, but lets face it, life happens.  Schedules change, emergencies occur and late night study sessions turn up.  Make sure if you find yourself in these situations you are prepared.  Expect the unexpected and make sure you carry healthy treats with you.  Protein bars, shakes, nuts and fruits are perfect for instances like these.

6. Don’t be hard on yourself – no one is perfect.  If you have a cheat meal or fall off track, just pick yourself off, dust yourself off and start again. 

7. Stick to your plan – you didn’t get overweight overnight, you will not lose weight or make changes overnight.  It takes time to develop healthy habits so just stick with it.

8. Have fun – find fun, various ways to keep yourself motivated like getting friends and family involved or joining a 5K or mud run.

9. Give yourself praise – reward yourself when you meet your goals, but avoid food as a reward.  Buy yourself something nice or get a mani/pedi and celebrate your accomplishments.

10. Don’t rush into this – people start with the best of intentions but try to do too much at once.  Again, you didn’t get overweight overnight, don’t expect to get instant results.  You won’t.  Be patient.

11. Focus on the journey and not the destination – enjoy the process of change and all the accomplishments along the way. 

12.  Measure success and make new goals – make yourself aware of accomplishments you make along your journey either by taking pics, measurements, body fat, weight (although not always the best measurement), speed, reps, weight-lifted, etc.  Once you’ve met a goal, make a new one and strive for success.