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

Chasing the Dog Days of Summer.

Miscellaneous

What a fabulous weekend! I have had four glorious days off work — including tomorrow, too! Woo-hooooo. I have been quite the little outdoorsy girl on my mini vacay. I have been obsessed with squeezing the last remaining summer out of the next couple weeks, so I took my little break very seriously.

This past week I was on the cabbage soup cleanse, except not so much cabbage soup, however. I nixed the soup after day three, (it’s so terrible) and was still able to lose seven pounds — also while cutting the cleanse shorts two days! I have a goal weight in mind and to motivate myself, I bought a very expensive (but very pretty) Michael Kors bag. My reward and deal to myself is that I get the bag when I reach my goal weight. Stay tuned for that because this old girl still has six more pounds to shed. Until then, the pretty little bag stays hidden in the boyfriend’s closet at his place. (Cue the sad music.)

On Saturday, the rents and I made an adventure out of driving to Huntington Beach in Bay Village. The beach is award winning, clean, beautiful and offers a stunning view of downtown Cleveland in the distance. We stopped in Downtown Willoughby for dinner afterwards (hence, cutting my week-long cleanse off.) I opted for a burger and a beer, which was not to go unnoticeably awesome after eating straight fruits and veggies all week.

Dad and I just being clowns like usual.

Dad and I just being clowns like usual.

On Sunday, I was determined to go for a long bike ride to switch up my work out. After failing to get a companion to join me in the light rain that day, I set out on my own. I ended up being super happy about not having anyone with me because I decided to ride 27 miles and didn’t have anyone else to worry about. I cranked up my iPod and enjoyed myself. Note to self: Do that more often.

About half way through my ride I stopped for a photo opt.

About half way through my ride I  stopped for a photo opt.

Sunday also called for a BBQ at the boyfriend’s house, which was a great time filled with Dance Revolution Two and a lot of trampoline bouncing. I felt like a little kid and loved every minute of it.

Today, Labor Day, I joined a group of 15 people on a canoeing trip. Half the group opted for a 7 mile kayak ride while the other a 10 mile canoe ride. Feeling like my normal superwoman self, I chose the 10 mile canoe.

And wow, did I underestimate that! Canoeing 10 miles is HARD. We looked up online how many calories each of us burned (my group had 9) and the calculator said I burned around 2,500 calories. I believe it too because my shoulders, back and arms are killing me! Great workout though, but really tough, especially with the hot sun beating down on you.

Some of the fearless canoers

Some of the fearless canoers.

The boyfriend and I let the canoe coast while we ate fruit salad. We coasted into these lily pads, which our guide kindly let us know was probably infested with leeches.

The boyfriend and I let the canoe coast while we ate fruit salad. We coasted into these lily pads, which our guide kindly let us know was probably infested with leeches.

Of course I also had to get up early and run this morning before the canoeing adventure. So on the ride home I convinced everyone how many calories we had all burned and tempted everyone into stopping for pizza and beer. The calories were well spent.

Tomorrow I start back on my healthy eating though. After walking to get ice cream with my mom after we got home from canoeing, I stopped up at the grocery store and bought fruits and veggies with a heavy heart. Except I am kinda excited to try and get to my goal weight this week because I want my Michael Kors bag so, so, so bad! It was a good cheat couple of days, but back to the grind tomorrow. I’m getting up early to run seven miles up on the all-purpose trail and then stopping up to see my grandma, since I am of course the favorite grandchild…

Now I am sitting here in my pajamas drinking wine after a great couple of days. We are feeling the aftermath of hurricane Isaac tonight up here in Northeast, Ohio. I know I’ll sleep well tonight even with the storm.

Hope your weekend and Labor Day was as well spent as mine — on both time spent doing fun things with friends and family and calories spent on great food!

Keep running!