Thursday, September 24, 2015

Still Going #BosuStrong!

This past Monday, stared week two of FitApproach #BosuStrong challenge! I have to admit, I focused more on my running last week then any other form of working out, and this week, I have been a couch potato.  But, there is no time like the present to start making changes and get back into action!  Here is this weeks blog prompt! I hope it sparks a bit of inspiration in you, as it did in me:)

6 ways I stay balanced
If you forgot to join me last week for the #BOSUStrong challenge or just weren’t up for the cardio, make sure you join me this week as it’s all about the balance! We’re standing on one leg, lunging, and BOSU squatting our way through the week.

But balance means more than just being able to stand on one leg, it also means being able to do what you love while making healthy choices at the same time. It means putting in the work and still finding time for decompressing after a long day. Or eating the slice of pizza but balancing it out with the salad, or limiting yourself to 1 or 2 slices.  Or finishing a 5 mile trail run and doing an hour yoga practice at home when you can’t make it to the gym.

Here are the 6 ways I stay balanced - what are yours?

I make time for myself by every morning, I get up and make my coffee. I then take an hour to check my emails and plan out what my day will consist of.  Do I want to stay home and practice yoga, do I want to run the trails, or do I need to take a day off? My morning routine is my me time.
My favorite me time is when I'm running.  Even if my fiancé is right next to me, I'm in my zone.  I plug into my music and feel the rhythm of the run.  I process all the jumbled thoughts in my head and find my balance.
My rule when it comes to a balanced diet is everything in moderation! This does not mean having a small piece of pizza, ice cream and a soda though.  It means now and then its okay for me to splurge, but stick to my whole grains, fruits and veggies the other days.  I love huge salads!
I make fitness a priority by trying my best to make it a part of my daily routine.  I don't want to be older and struggling to get fit or be healthy.  I want to live my adult life knowing that I have done the best I can to take care of my body.
When I get stressed or overwhelmed, my go to is curling in a ball and crying.  LOL just joking! I do wish I could sometimes though! The thing that best calms me when I feel that way is deep breaths, a hug from my fiancé, or some sun salutations.
To help my family stay balanced, we go for runs together and I post motivating things on forms of social media I use.  My fiancé and I push each other to be our best and not to give up.  He is one of the reasons I keep pushing myself and trying to be a better version of myself.

Here are my fave 6 moves to help improve your balance:

  1.  Warrior 3 (yoga)
  2.  One leg squats
  3.  One arm planks
  4.  Lunge Jumps
  5.  Squats on Bosu Ball
  6.  Forearm Inversions (yoga)

    So I want to know - are you #BOSUStrong? Copy and paste the above, fill it in and make it your own and then tag me in it and share with your friends! Let’s all be #BOSUSTRONG.

    Briggs & Al's Run & Walk for Children's Hospital

    Saturday, was the first of my fall races.  Briggs & Al's Run & Walk for Children's Hospital is an annual event in Milwaukee.  The event has been a tradition in Milwaukee for almost 40 years. The turnout is always huge- over 2000 people! The event itself is designed around the kids. There are no medals or top finisher awards at this event.  Prior to race start, there is a lot to do! Champions Breakfast for the champion kids, mascots to take pictures with, local school bands playing music, free coffee, and lots of people coming together for a great cause. 

    To get to the starting line, we parked at the finish line and took one of the 40+ shuttle buses being provided.  We had decided we'd rather walk to the bus before the start then walk to our car after the race.  We had done that at our half marathon and it was one of the longest walks we'd ever taken (not literally, but it physically felt like that).  The walk to the bus was a bit brisk and overcast, but that was a good hour prior to the start.  By the time the race started it was 60s and sunny! When we got to the bus drop, we did a bathroom stop.  I then grabbed a free cup of coffee and we walked toward the front of the starting line. Of course, I made us take a ton of selfies together :)

    Taking the Shuttle Bus

    The wheelchair race started at 10:15 and the runners started at 10:30 with the Elites being at the front.  Elites are the only ones with different race bibs that distinguish their level.  The starting corals started at 6min miles and back.  The race corals weren't monitored and I wanted to be close to the start.  My fiancé and I ran into one of his best friends about 10 minutes before the start and all lined up together.  Less then 2 minutes into the race, our friend took off follow a "cute girl". 

    The start of the race is straight down Wisconsin Ave with a bit of a hill decline to an incline.  The first mile I could tell we were taking it out a bit fast and Id rather run smart then fast.  I finished the race not feeling very sweaty or out of breath.  I probably could've gone a lot harder, but my mental game got in the way in the end and I was struggling.  The first mile I was all smiles and feeling great. I hit mile 1 in 7:48. Going into mile 2, we were running past the top of the art museum and rounding on to Prospect Ave with another small incline.  That incline hit my legs.  I felt tired and slowed down my pace.  I had to hit my fiancé's arm a few times during the race to let him know I was falling behind otherwise he would have just kept going.  He is a strong runner and can hold his speed for more miles than I can hold mine.  I'm a sprinter, but he definitely has the strength and endurance to run long distances.  The end of mile 2 had us running down Layfette hill and turning onto Lincoln Memorial Drive past Collectivo.  I hit mile 2 in 8:15.

    Mile 3 took us straight down Lincoln Memorial Drive. I could feel my legs getting tired.  The first photographer of the race was during mile 3.  My fiancé and I threw our arms around each other and flashed the "hang loose" hand sign (its his thing) with big smiles. I hit mile 3 in 8:33. Mile 4 was the same. Except this is the mile I felt like I was dying and definitely slowed my pace.  I refused to walk even though I desperately wanted to.  I'm just not in as good of shape as I used to be.  I told my fiancé he could go run ahead of me, but got the answer I'm learning to accept-  "No, I'm running with you".  If he hadn't been by my side I would've given up.  I kind of did mentally at this point. I just let people run pass me and didn't try to push myself harder.  We saw another photographer right after the mile 4 marker.  Mile 4 continued down Lincoln memorial drive. I hit mile 4 in 9:09. 

    Mile 5 was the homestretch! We turned off of Lincoln Memorial Drive and started running into the third ward.  I felt myself give up at the beginning of that mile, and hitting the last 0.4 miles to go, I felt my motivation suddenly come back.  I turned to the final stretch and began to pick up my pace, I think I threw off my fiancé on that, because next thing he knew I was taking off.  There were 2 roads we had to run down to reach the finish line. As we turned onto the second, I got hit with a wave of defeat.  The finish line was further down then I had thought and I was booking it.  I slowed my pace to let myself mentally catch up to what I had expected and then we took off down the finish line together and finished hand in hand. I finished mile 5 in 9:02. 

    Running to the Finish Line!
    Overall, I'm glad I ran and finished.  This was the longest I have run, without stopping, since I started training again.  I couldn't have finished without my fiancé by my side.  I cant wait to do it all over again this weekend.  I have trained 2 days this week so far- so slacking and not prepared to race 6.2 but I will go out there and have fun and do my best to not hold myself back from pushing myself.

    We Finished!!
    Until Next time:

    Saturday, September 19, 2015

    Bulu Box Review #LoveBulu

    This past month, I had the opportunity to review Bulu Box.   "BULU BOX IS A MONTHLY BOX OF HEALTHY DISCOVERIES THAT WILL UPGRADE YOUR HEALTH" (Bulu Box Website). Subscribers receive a new custom box each month filled with health, weight loss and nutrition samples from top brands.  Each box comes with 4-5 samples- with the sample supplying enough of the product for the subscriber to decide if the product is a right fit for them.

    The box I received, had 10 items for me to sample:
      • Urgent RX Upset Stomach - fast tummy relief
      • Martha Stewart Vegetarian Multi-Vitamin Gummies
      • Movit Energy Gummies
      • Nuvia Café - Nutrient rich instant coffee
      • Ovega-3 - Eco-Friendly Omega-3 chewable
      • BPI Sports FunnBar - Protein Chews
      • Naked Wines Vouched: $100 off gift card
      • Mushroom Matrix Nrg Matrix Energy
      • Hemp Foods- Hemp Pro 70 Chocolate Protein Supplement
      • MealEnders Signaling Lozenge

    The first sample I tried from my Bulu Box was the Nuvia Café instant coffee.  Most instant coffees are crystalized- this one is a smooth powder; pouring the packet into my coffee cup had me filled with excitement for this cup of coffee.  Finishing my cup left me sad and wishing I had more.  By far, the best instant coffee I have ever had.  One awesome feature, and a reason I #LoveBulu, is Bulu Box has all the products they send samples of available for purchase on their website as well.  There are two kinds of Nuvia Café instant coffee you can purchase.  I sampled the regular instant, but there is also a "Trim Gourmet Skinny Coffee". 

    The next two items I tried from my box were the Movit Energy Gummies and the Nrg Matrix Energy  I enjoyed both of these products.  I used both on separate occasions before running.  The Nrg Matrix Energy I used first.  It was a small pouch to add to water.  I drank about 30 minutes prior to going on a run.  I actually had one of the best training runs I have had this month after drinking the Nrg Matrix Energy.  I had the same results with the Movit Energy Gummies.  I ate those 40 minutes prior to a training running and again had one of my better training runs this month.  Both items had similar tastes to me- as someone who has tried many sports drinks / chews I found them to be in the same taste range as most others.  The drink was tangy and the gummies had a dulled down fruit taste.  I found both to be effective energy boosters and my workouts after use made me feel that these products did exactly what they are supposed to do- energize.   One thing I loved about the Movit Energy Gummies, is that they have one of my favorite Bible passages on their labels (in picture below).

    Next I tried the MealEnders Signaling Lozenges. These were interesting.  I was given 8 lozenges to try (2 of each flavor).  The flavors they come in are: Citrus, Cinnamon, Chocolate Mint, and Mocha.  I enjoyed the flavor of the Chocolate Mint.  Each lozenge has a soft outer coating of the flavor which leads to a hard candy.  I did not enjoy the cinnamon- I spit it out after a few seconds.  The other two flavors I could give or take.  The lozenges leaves my tongue feeling tingly and as though every taste bud had been activated.  The also did end my hunger.  I would try these again, but I'm not sure I would purchase them, id rather drink a glass of water or hot tea to fill me up. I could write a review for every product, but those were the ones that I enjoyed the most.

    The Martha Stewart Vitamins I was very excited about.  I had just run out of prenatal vitamins, and these have folic acid and are vegetarian.  Plus they are gummies, just like the prenatal I take.  I thought these would be a great fill in until I could get to the store and buy a replacement.  However, upon opening the vitamins I was struck with a rancid smell.  I decided to ignore the scent and try a gummy vitamin- instant regret.  I spit it out immediately. I do not recommend theses vitamins. 

    Overall, I really enjoyed the Bulu Box I was sent to try.  Id go as far as saying I #LoveBulu :)
    My favorite part of Bulu Box (besides being exposed to awesome new products that I may not have tried or even found on my own) is the Box itself! Filled with inspirational and motivation quotes and sayings! The box made me want to work towards my goals!

    I definitely look forward to subscribing to Bulu Box in the future and having them make a customized box designed towards my fitness/health goals with products that would be best for me to sample, and hopefully continue to order.  If you would like to subscribe too, which I highly recommend, use my promo code: SWEATPINK for 50% off a 3-month subscription!!

    Until Next time:

    "Make Today Ridiculously Awesome" (Bulu Box Box)

    Thursday, September 17, 2015

    Mid Week

    You know those mental blocks I've talked about before? Well last week, combine mental blocks with feeling nauseous and non stop exhausted, and that's how my week was.  I didn't run a single day last week.  I spend most of my time alternating from my bed to my couch and even had to call in sick to work (i also passed out that afternoon- so work was definitely not an option).  I think it was a lack of hydration, allergies, poor nutrition and fatigue from actually training the week prior.  I took a lot of time off from consistent training, so my body was kind of confused as to what the heck was going on.  

    This week, its a different story! I worked all weekend, and was still feeling tired, so there was no running/working out of any sort happening.  Monday, I got back in action.  I waited for my fiancé to get home from work so we could run together.  I used to really struggle having a running partner- i would feel like i was being judged if I wasn't holding a 6'-6'30" pace the entire time or any of the time, like I had to compete with the person training with me.  Now, I love running with him!!  I think it helps that he has told me 100 times he doesn't care how fast we run, if I'm having a bad day and want to walk, if i want to sprint- he just wants to run with ME. Having him by my side when i feel like giving up motivates me to keep going.  More then half the training runs I've done this month, he has been by my side.  And, all of those runs, I would've given up halfway through if I'd been running alone.  No, I'm not running high mileage right now, but the miles I am running, those are miles that are getting me back into shape, so I have my struggles right now. 

    Anyways, that aside, training this week has been moderate, not great, not horrible. I've also gone back to my yoga mat and can feel my core and upper body strengthening as I'm able to hold certain poses (i still cant hold them very long) that i was struggling with even getting. 

    Monday's run was 3.00miles at a 9'45"pace.  Total time being 29:14.6 
    Mile 1: 9'40" Mile 2: 9'03" Mile 3: 10'32"   Overall, i was happy with this run, now that i look back on it.  Initially, i was upset with myself.  I felt a lot faster then i had been running. I also felt that i held back on myself at time.  Mile 2, i could feel the difference in speed.  I knew i had increased my pace- i thought, having fresh legs after a week off, that my pace was in the 7 min range, but i was wrong.  After finishing the run, i needed to stop at 3 miles and walk the rest of the way home.  I actually had to sit down when we finished because i got dizzy, tunnel vision and was pretty close to passing out.  I had trouble forming thoughts and formulating words. Pretty sure my fiancé was freaked out, but he just had me rest and then held hands with me as we walked back home.  I hadn't hydrated during the day, and again, was low on proper nutrition. 

    Tuesday's run was 4.00 miles at a 10'27" pace.  Total time being 41:48.6 
    Mile 1: 12'26" Mile 2: 9'29" Mile 3: 10'24" Mile 4: 9'29"
    This run had difficulties- which you can see from my mile times.  At 0.7 miles, (yes, not even one mile in) i was walking.  I had my fiancé take a lap (we run around a lake near us- each lap is exactly .50 of a mile) without me so i could clear my head (i also let my watch continue to run-thus the 12min mile of which i stood there for 4 or so of the minutes).  Mile 2 i finally found my pace but entering into mile 3, i needed to walk again.  My legs weren't tired, i wasn't out of breath, i just couldn't get my head on straight.  My fiancé reminded me that i was doing more then the person sitting on their couch and that i could finish this run.  So we did 2 more laps around the lake and finished strong.  I felt my motivation creep back and felt at ease with him running by my side.  I wanted to get in 4 (getting him to 4.5) miles, so once i hit that mark, i decided to stop and walk the remaining half mile home.  Overall, i cant complain.  Its not my best run, the mental games were strong, but i ended my run beating the thoughts in my head that were holding me back. 

    Wednesday's run 3.02 miles at a 7'58" pace.  Total time being 24:04.9
    Mile 1: 8'32" Mile 2: 8'11" Mile 3: 7'12"  This run had no direction when i started.  Within the first 0.30 miles, i had mentally changed my route 3 times.  I hadn't even left my neighborhood and i had no plan.  I decided to forgo running around the lake and get some hill training, but then changed my mind, deciding to run down the hills instead of up them. I was craving speed! I zig zagged around for about the first half mile trying to figure out what i was doing and once i decided on my route started to visualize the race i have this Saturday.  I have never run this race, but, i know the route by heart as its part of a commute i made daily for over a year and also half of it is part of a route i ran for 3 years. Visualizing this race is what helped me to negative split.  I pretended i was running the finish.  I didn't let the mental games get in my way.  I told myself, run to that tree, then to the next tree, see you feel great don't stop now.  By the time i finished, i was dripping sweat and felt exhausted, but i felt good.  It was a great run for me.  I ran alone, just me and my music, and i was in my zone.  I have a good feeling about the run this weekend.  My goal is not to win- i know- that's a huge change for me- but my goal is run with my fiancé by my side and to hold 7'30"-8'15" minute miles.  Not my fastest, but steady pace and consistent.  I think with the adrenaline and the crowd of people i will be able to zone out, get pumped and just run! I do want to place myself near the starting line so i don't have to battle through people.  I'd rather get passed by runners, then try to battle through a crowd and run a pace slower then the one I had intended for myself.

    I have one more run to get in before resting on Friday and racing on Saturday.  This Saturday, i am taking an approach that i have not done before- i will be running a warm up prior to racing. Normally i stretch and do some sprints and a few exercises to get my heart rate up, but i never have run a warm up.  With my knees being in bad shape, I've found that at about 1 mile into my runs, i don't feel the pain.  The beginning of all my runs starts with me limping, so to skip that with this race, ill warm up prior so i can ease in my knees.  Smart thinking, I know. Lol :) 

    Until next time: 

    Monday, September 14, 2015

    5 Things that make me #BosuStrong

    I'm so excited that its time for the Sweat Pink #BosuStrong Challenge!! I've been excited about this challenge since I first found out about it!  I use Bosu with all my clients and love working out with the Bosu! This challenge is going to be so much fun and to kick start it, here is a fun mad-lib I got from Sweat Pink!


    Today I am embarking on a 4 week challenge with BOSU and Sweat Pink to prove to the world that I am #BOSUSTRONG. Being #BOSUSTRONG means I make fitness part of my everyday life, at home, out and about, and with my friends and family. I will squat, mountain climb, plank, push-up, lunge, jumping jack and pull-up my way to a stronger and fitter body.  And I will encourage Paul @SizzleBean and Lizzie @pantech2 to join me on this fun journey because we are one big, happy #FitFamily.

    Being #BOSUStrong is not just about movement, sweat, or even owning a BOSU, its about being a leader, an inspiration to others, and sharing my own fitness journey with others. It’s about not letting insecurities and fear stand in my way of sweating and getting strong! The 5 things that make me #BOSUStrong are:

    My strong support system. I have an amazing fiancé and best friend, both who are always encouraging my fitness journey!

    My ability to overcome obstacles and persevere. I have gone through a lot and my fitness has stayed strong and kept me motivated to keep on keeping on!

    My love for fitness and motivating/inspiring others! I #LiveForFitness ! I love being a personal trainer and helping others to reach their goals.

    My healthy lifestyle.  I don't drink, I quit smoking, and I make fitness part of my everyday routine. My fiancé and I are very healthy eaters and are constantly encouraging and supporting each other :)

    And my motivated mindset.  My willpower and my goals.  I am a goal maker and I plan to achieve what I set my mind to! AND you can do the same! I have faith in all of you!

    So I want to know - are you #BOSUStrong? Copy and paste the above, fill it in and make it your own and then tag me in it and share with your friends! Let’s all be #BOSUSTRONG

    Friday, September 11, 2015

    Run Far

    This morning, I was texting with one of my best friends and confided in her that I had been feeling a tad down the past week.  She replied to me with exactly what I needed to hear, and it inspired me to write this post.

    Her response was:

    "Run Far. Like as in exercising not running away from life"

    I needed to hear that more then anything.  My last post, I talked about how my week of training had been.  This week, I still haven't hit the pavement.  I've been feeling nauseous and exhausted all week. I've spent the week at home on the couch or in bed, binge watching Netflix.  Talk about unproductive. 

    Having my friend say that to me, it lit a spark.  She's right.  What I need to do is run.  When I run, I feel 1000 times better.  When I'm stressed or anxious, running calms me down, allows me to sort through my racing thoughts and breathe easier.  Running is a form of therapy for me.  Running to me is also a form of meditation.  Running, yoga, and swimming all have similar effects for me.  Yoga allows me to breathe deep and focus on my breaths and the way my body flows;  running and swimming, I focus on stride or strokes, breathing rhythms and am able to turn my mind off or take that time to sort through thoughts and emotions. 

    Not having run this week,  I was not allowing myself the release of emotions and time to think- which I need.  If I want to feel better,  I need to run.  Running is a huge part of my life and when I let running slip away, I lose a part of me.  

    With that being said, I'm off to run.  I'm not sure how far or how long I will run.  I'm don't know if ill go out and sprint 1 mile or run a slow 10 miles.  I just know I will run.  I will take the time to give my soul what it needs. 

    Unitl next time:

    Wednesday, September 9, 2015

    Week in Training

    Last week, i finally dedicated myself to running and got some training under my feet.  Running is different for me right now then it used to be.  I am still regaining my fitness after an extedned time period of not training.  Remember when i used to run fast?  Me too.  But i cant dwell on how i ran 5 and 6 min miles 2 years ago- in my training (not even racing).  I am where i am because of who i am and what i have been through.  I cant change the past, i can only work hard and move forward. 

    That being said, this week was what i would call a success.  I made a training plan and i stuck to it.  I ran Monday-Saturday with Saturday being a recovery run.  Sunday was a rest day.  

    My milage is light right now and my pace is slow.  Im rebuilding my strength and endurance and am becoming okay with not being where i used to be. 

    Monday: Miles: 3.00 Pace: 9'02" Total Time: 27:10
    Tuesday: Miles: 3.12 Pace: 9'26" Total Time: 29:31
    Wednesday: Miles: 3.19 Pace: 8'55" Total Time: 28:25
    Thursday: Miles: 3.13 Pace: 8'55" Total Time: 27:53
    Friday: Miles: 4.02 Pace: 8'17" Total Time: 33:20
    Saturday: (recovery run) Miles: 4.00 Pace: 11'37" Total Time: 46:28

    Saturdays run, as easy paced as it was, became my hardest run of the week.  Thursday 's run felt the best for me.  On Saturday, my legs felt heavy and dead.  It was a struggle to keep myself going, but luckily I had my fiancé running with me to help me stay motivated. 

    My goal is to keep building up my speed and lower my average pace by my race on the 19th.  Paul and I are running Briggs & Al's Run and Walk.  Its a local race that has been going on in Milwaukee for over 38 years supporting a wonderful cause.  The race is a 8K (4.9 miles) and my goal is to finish in the top 20 women and run under 40 minutes.  The following weekend is a 10K race and I would like to hold a 7'30" pace for that race, but in order to get there, I need to keep training.

    Sunday was rest day. This Monday I woke up with the worst headache I have ever had.  I was back in bed at 4pm and didn't get up til the next day.  I did not run Monday.  Tuesday, I was feeling exhausted and spent the night in eating pizza and watching Netflix with my fiancé.  He left for a business trip this morning so we wanted to spend time together.  Today, I need to get in a run before I head to work, but I'm struggling to keep my eyes open as I type this.

    I just need to keep my eyes on my goals and put in the work.  I cant let the hard work I put in last week be for nothing. Time to change my attitude, do some jumping jacks and wake myself up!

    Until next time:

    Friday, September 4, 2015

    Make a plan and chase your goals

    Being a part of the #SweatPink family and a #SweatPink Ambassador, I'm sent weekly emails with blog ideas or prompts for things to post on my blog, twitter and Instagram.  Its a great way for me to have something to write about and post things to connect with other #SweatPink ambassadors.  I've been sitting here the last two weeks, thinking about the prompt sent out to us for the weeks of aug 24-sept 4.  

    Why have I been sitting on this one for so long? Because it required a lot of thought and re-evaluating of my goals, where I'm at right now, and where I want to be.

    here is the actual prompt:
    1). Take a moment to re-examine your goals [if you haven't written them down yet, go for it now!]. How do you plan to put the success of these goals into action? Are you making changes to your eating habits, allocating more time for the gym, running or other workouts, or are you joining a new group class?  
    2). And how will you keep yourself accountable to your fitness strategy? Are you blogging about your progress or pairing up with a buddy to motivate each other?

    As you can see, its one that requires some thought.  So without further to do, lets look at my re-examination. :)

    I'm a goal orientated person, but my goals are always changing, I'm always jumping from one thing to the next.  I don't write them down, and being a list person, I'm surprised I haven't.  2015 is more than halfway over, and while I have achieved some small goals I haven't really sat down to look at what my real true goals for myself are.  In past blogs, you've read about some struggles I've gone through and how I am getting back on the grind with taking positive steps towards goals- but what are these goals exactly?

    I've made a list of 10 (yes 10) goals for the end of 2015- and most are goals that can be carried out long term as well. 

    2015 GOALS:
    1) Participate in a running race every month til the end of the year
    2) Run a minimum of 70 miles every month
    3) Start attending swim practices regularly with my Masters Team #EBSC
    Cut out caffeine and soda from my diet
    5) Cut out processed sugars and foods completely
    6) Bike a minimum of 3 days a week as cross training - swimming 2 days a week- running 6- yoga 3
    7) Deepen my Yoga practice and achieve inversions that I have been struggling with / handstands
    8) Grow my personal training business and take on more clients
    9) Better time management
    10) Continue to grow as a better person and encourage others to do the same

    Now that I have my goals, I need to take action to start seeing them achieved.  I can't make a goal and expect it to just happen.  I need to take action and work hard to see these goals achieved.  What does that look like for me? Well, I need to hold myself accountable for starters.  Getting up early and hitting the road is the best way for me to get in a run for the day.  I have the privilege of only working a few days a week, and most of those days are evenings and weekends- leaving my mornings and afternoons completely free- giving me the opportunity to take the necessary actions to achieve my goals. 

    The steps necessary for me to achieve my goals are actually quite simple.  Get up and take action.  Don't let my head keep me from saying yes to working out.  I am fortunate that I have a team for swim practice- that helps push me to do more in a workout then I would by myself.  I have a bike trainer in my living room, so I can bike for an hour every morning while I watch some mindless reality show.  And when it come to running- I have a fiancé who has become a runner and we hold each other accountable with our training.  

    I am registered for 2 races this month, and one next month (October).  That leaves 2 more months to find races- that's an easy goal.  There is a "drumstick dash" on thanksgiving day that my fiancé and I are planning to run and December we will just have to fins a race- I think there is a hot cocoa 5K that month.  

    Better time management for me is a work in progress, but it also starts with getting up in the morning and being proactive. I am a huge list person and use my calendar every day- so I just need to plan things accordingly.  

    Deeping my Yoga practice is something I need to definitely hold myself accountable for.  The gym I go to has yoga classes a few times a week so I need to look at those and start attending. I'm also attending a class at a yoga studio in my area later this month about inversions.  Its a 2 hour class that is focused on hips and core to help deepen arm balances.  I'm really excited about this class and about getting deeper into my yoga practice.  I have distanced myself from my practices.  This winter I was practicing an hour every day and lately I'm lucky if I do 1 practice a week.  I have the time for the practices, but my time management and mental state have kept me from being proactive and practicing.

    Diet changes are ones that seem hard, but once you start doing are actually pretty easy.  I eat very healthy to start but now and then I love my ice cream and pizza- which there are healthy versions of or alternatives to. And cutting caffeine is not that huge a challenge.  I drink coffee every morning and am starting to cut back and hopefully eliminate that from my diet as well as soda.  I'm a sucker for a diet coke and I am trying to replace that with sparkling water.  I have an obsession with Coconut flavored La Croix and will hopefully cut soda out completely very soon.  I used to not drink soda or eat sugar and I felt great.

    To grow my personal training business, I need to put myself out there. I am starting to be more present in social media with my business, and I am hoping that word of mouth can help bring me clients.  I am asking friends and family members to refer people looking for a trainer to me as well.  Small steps can lead to big things.
    My goals seem like a lot when I look at them, but when I think about how I will achieve them, they are not that big a deal and definitely are achievable.  My last goal of continuing to grow as a better person will happen as long as I continue to take responsibility for my actions, work my program of sobriety and practice living a life of less judging and more loving.  How do I encourage others to do the same? By being a living example.  I need to practice what I preach.

    I'm excited to start taking my goals to the next level and cant wait to see how awesome 2015 finishes out for me!

    Questions for you:

    What are your goals for the rest of the year? How are you going to achieve them?

    What goal have you achieved already this year? How did you do it?

    Wednesday, September 2, 2015

    My Other True Love

    Many of my readers and people who know me, know that running is a huge part of how I identify myself.  I am known in the group of people I hang out with as "the runner".  This past year, running and I took a bit of a break from each other.  I still ran every month, but not with the passion or dedication I used to have.  I did my St. Patricks Day 5K  as well as my half marathon in June on no training.  This August, I had a brief moment of passion and dedication to running- that lasted about week.  Now, as I sit here drinking my post-run chocolate protein shake (made with almond milk and I added organic peanut butter) I am here to say, the passion is coming back.  The dedication is starting to become apparent.  Running is starting to become a loving relationship again. 

    This has not been an easy few months for me and I wont pretend that life has been all rainbows and sunshine.  While dealing with and sorting through some life situations, I let running fall to the back burner.  And its stayed there for quite some time.  My body quickly fell out of shape, yes I'm still toned and fit- I didn't stop working out completely- but my cardio endurance is basically at beginners level.  There is nothing wrong with being a beginner, but going from running low 5 min miles and a high 4 min mile here and there to training at 8:30-10 min miles has been a bit defeating.  

    Monday, I realized things needed to change.  I have a training plan on the fridge, I stare at it daily- but I was only running 1 or 2 of the days out of the 5 a week I had planned for myself.  My fiancé and I are registered for 2 races this month and another next month, with plans to continue to race through the winter- therefore, training needs to be happening.   Monday, we started and we are holding each other accountable. 

    Today, I didn't want to run.  It would have been much easier to dwell on the past and how fast I used to be and let myself get depressed and sit on the couch and cry.  But, I laced up, I got out there and I ran.  Sure I ran at a slow (for me) pace, but I felt good, I negative split, my knees didn't hurt as bad as normal and most importantly I DID IT! 

    I could cry about the past and where I am in comparison to the last few years and I could go the route of depression, OR I can realize, like most things, results don't happen instantly and things take time and work.  It takes 2 weeks to fall out of shape and 8 to get back into shape.  My body needs to readjust, relearn, and rebuild to get back to the pace I once held.  If I never get back that pace, that's okay too.  I did a lot of damage to my body with overtraining the last few years.  I have bad knees and they aren't going to get better overnight, and there is no guarantee they'll get better at all.  But with dedication and putting in the work, I will see where I can go; I'll gain strength and endurance, and I will get stronger and faster.  

    So today, I choose to not give up.  I choose to hold on to my dreams and to chase them.  I choose to set goals and to achieve them. And I choose to love- to love my body for what it can do and to love myself as I am.

    Until next time: