New mindset — control your mind, control your life.

Miscellaneous

Life is good!

I have never felt stronger or faster in my training. During the past two months I’ve really come into a new mind set about working out, fitness, diet and just overall being healthy.

I’m working out five to six days a week and am doing great on eating clean. May 19 (Cleveland half marathon) is looking so good in 8 days! It’s funny though, I actually have never felt like a real runner until I started training for the half marathon. I used to run around three miles each run and now I’m averaging five to six on a normal run, plus a little over 10 on my long weekend runs. I feel great!

My dad and I after kickboxing class.

My dad and I after kickboxing class.

In my new mindset I’ve made a couple of changes over the last two months, especially in the way I think about health and fitness. I used to only do cardio, which is of course important, but I was missing the bigger picture. I wasn’t lifting weights, I wasn’t switching up my workouts and I wasn’t eating clean. I was frustrated because I wasn’t seeing any results. I wasn’t trying to lose a lot of weight, but I thought I would lose some just by training for the half marathon. My mind set actually started to change when I joined Instagram and started following a lot of health and fitness users. I started to see the importance of how your entire lifestyle has to change to get results. I started to become more knowledgeable on calories, weights, workouts and foods. I have learned so much just by surrounding myself with the right people. My dad is also a personal trainer and teaches spinning and kickboxing. I’ve never went to him for help with diet and exercise until only recently. What a valuable resource I was overlooking! My dad has a vast array of knowledge about training, nutrition and supplements. Him and I actually workout three times a week together at 6 a.m. (Yes that early, but I have found that I actually love it!)

Now eating clean is a constant struggle for me. Everyday I have to fight the temptation to eat Taco Bell or a giant box of mac & cheese (what? Is that weird?) I have noticed such a difference in how I feel after eating crap and when I am eating clean. I have dropped five pounds in just changing the food I eat in my diet. Imagine what I can do if I try even harder? I am starting to understand and respect everything the body is capable of. It’s actually really incredible if you think about it. We have the choice to build our bodies exactly how we want them, it’s just how bad (or how less) we want it that
sometimes gets in the way.

Here are a few things I’ve changed in my diet:

  • I’ve found that planning my meals and snacks is key to success. There’s a reason people say “fail to plan, plan to fail.” I eat every two to three hours and I know exactly what I’m going to eat when I do.
  • I always have a banana or apple on me (at ALL times) in case I’m suddenly overcome with violent hunger. This keeps me from bingeing when I do actually sit down to eat or from stopping at Wendy’s.
  • I track all the food I eat. I use MyFitnessPal on my smartphone and I keep a notebook where I also track the food along with the time.
  • I aim to eat protein and/or a fruit or vegetable with every snack or meal.
  • I eat peanut butter and yogurt when I am craving sweets, which is daily.
  • I kept hearing “DRINK MORE WATER.” So I upped my H20 intake. I now try to drink a gallon a day. It seems like a lot some days, but it does a good job at keeping me feeling full. Try it!
A normal meal now-a-days

A normal meal now-a-days

As far as my workouts, I run outside or on the treadmill, I use the elliptical, I go to spinning class, boot camp, a cycle and sculpt class and kickboxing class. I play on two volleyball teams twice a week. I also try to do abs everyday and I recently started the 30 day squat challenge (see below, today is day 7 for me.)¬† Working out with my dad has also helped me immensely. Before working out with my dad, I was intimidated by the weight area of my gym. I joked that I needed him for “emotional support” at first and it really helped having him there to spot me on bench and to give me tips and tricks on the other machines. I would have never touched the squat rack before working out with him, nor a drill where you pull down on a giant rope. I love lifting weights now and I’m looking forward to being able to lift more and more and improve.

Snack time!

Snack time!

I continue to do research on nutrition, foods and workouts to help keep me motivated. I would suggest to anymore looking for motivation to actually start on social media. There is a large gathering of fitness experts out there posting things every hour. It not only keeps you motivated, but it gives you more ideas and boasts your spirit that there are other people out there working just as hard as you, if not harder — and that’s why you continue!

What motivates you? What tricks or tips do you have to stay motivated? What changes have you made recently to transform your health and fitness routine?

Try this 30 day challenge

Try this 30 day challenge

You Just Gotta Keep Going.

Miscellaneous

I’ve been good about getting to the gym.

Last week I racked up 23 miles. The week before that I put 26.6 miles on my Nike’s.

I get on the treadmill around 6:15 a.m. and force myself to stay on until about five after seven. It’s terrible waking up at 5:50 a.m. but it makes a great start to my day, plus after a long day at the office and class there’s no way I’m going to the gym at night. (Please, I’d have to wait 45 minutes for a treadmill, then get kicked off 30 minutes later by some girl wearing a matching sweatsuit — who will then proceed to text on her phone the entire time she has the treadmill while walking on a .5 incline at 2.5 miles per hour.)

I’m convinced that the real athletes hit the gym in the early morning.

Everyone’s super serious and focused at 6 a.m. and I can run for 50 minutes and not be bothered or annoyed once. Plus there’s something tranquil about starting a run looking out at the dark world and slowly seeing the sun come up, casting orange and yellow rays of light through the giant gym windows. (This picturesque scene is happening as I’m dying and gasping for breathe on the treadmill while trying not to blow chunks in the garbage can.)

Regardless, today was a break-through day of running. (Don’t you love when that happens?) I found it easy to run 4.6 miles and was pleasantly surprised as I looked down at the treadmill screen and saw my PR time down by nearly six minutes. I have been aiming for anywhere in the four mile mark lately. Some days it has been really discouraging though. I’d like to be able to run six or seven miles comfortably everyday, so I get frustrated that I have to force myself to run just four some days. But today was a good run because A. It wasn’t painful and I wasn’t counting down every second and B. My time was down¬† — a small victory in my books.

Oh and it didn’t hurt that I burned 526 calories either. (You better believe I’m eating ice cream later, or cracking open that Corona that’s in my fridge…kidding. Well, kinda.)

I just want to keep getting faster and stronger. It can be really discouraging not being able to run as much and you want to, but when you have little break-through moments like today, it really makes the hard work worth it.

But I’ve got a lot of hard work ahead of me.

I’ve been throwing around the idea in my head about running the Cleveland half marathon on May 20. More on that race can be found here.

On days I want to die after my workout I think the 10K is more realistic. I want to run the half so bad, but when it’s a challenge to run 4 miles some days, that’s when I get frustrated. I tell myself I’ll get faster and stronger if I keep at the training schedule, but I just want to hurry up and be ready and able to run 13.1 miles right now!

Who knows what I’ll end up doing. I’m supposed to go to a wedding the same day of the race, but we’ll see how everything plans out.

For now, I just need to keep running.

P.S. I love this …