Wednesday, March 21, 2012

"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger."

With only 4 hours of sleep to run on, I rolled out of bead with eyes barely open wondering how I was going to make it through an hour of boot camp this morning. To give myself a kick of energy I took 2 large chugs of coffee leftover in the pot from yesterday and headed out the door. Out of no where a huge burst of energy came over me and I was PUMPED to workout. It was actually a decent temperature at 5:30 this morning as opposed to the half frozen weather I normally have to deal with. To keep up this new jolt of energy I turned up some motivating music in the car and found my mojo ;) I was ready to rock this workout (with some inspirational words from my amazing boyfriend). Once the workout started I felt so much better and alive. Like the saying goes, "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger." Sometimes you just have to bite your lip and put on a good attitude. Most of the times when you fake a positive attitude you actually gain one. It is amazing how the brain works like that! Another little thing that has kept me excited for workouts this week is my NEW SHOES!!!

When I saw these at the Nike Outlet I instantly wanted them. The colors are so vibrant, which is something I love. They are a real eye grabber as well :) Although I instantly wanted them I had to be sure that they were the right shoe for me, despite how totally amazingly perfect their style was for me. When picking out the right kind of shoes many people go for style or brand over other more important factors. It is important to categorize what kind of physical activities you will you performing with your new shoes: cross training, weight lifting, running, etc. Next you should figure out whether you are a pronator, supinator or neutral. There are a couple techniques to figure this out; one is to lay your shoe flat on the ground, pick up the toe of the shoe so that it is sitting on its heel and gently let the shoe drop. As the shoe drops back to the ground from the heel, watch to see if your shoe turns inwards (pronates) or outwards (supinate). Depending on which one you are and to what degree it is better to get a shoe that will help prevent it. There are many shoe stores, such as Fleet Feet, that will do this for you as well. Fleet Feet as well as some physical therapy offices will also do a gait analysis of your running/walking stride either on a tredmill or walking through the store. People are trained in biomechanics to analyze the way your foot strikes the ground and the best type of shoe to accomodate that. Yes, these kinds of things can end up being expensive but in the scheme of things it is worth it to have proper shoes than to deal with possible injuries or long term pain due to having the incorrect shoes.

Check out Fleet Feet's FITLOSOPHY. (Also many towns have local shoe stores who now do this as well)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Tabata Tuesday:
Joint Stability Warm-up
1 Mile Run
Tricep Extensions
Push Press
Bent over Rows
Dumbell Rotations
Dumbell Press/Bi-lateral flys
Bicycle Crunches
Cool Down

It was a rough workout this morning but I felt so good the whole time I did it.  There were times when things almost got a little too rough and I almost wanted to give up...but I didn't.  Felt so amazing to be able to accomplish each exercise.  From the first time I did tabata in week 2 of boot camp till now I can tell that I am able to push myself harder and am able to achieve more reps within the 20s all out sessions. My body hurts but the hurt is what keeps me going; shows me I am working hard like I should be.  To help keep a positive mindset I am trying something new where I do not look at my body in the mirror because that always leads to me criticizing it.  I do not need to criticize my body because change does not happen overnight or within a month.  True, permanent change happens over a long period of time.

Monday, March 19, 2012


First day back at boot camp after a week oh man was it a little more rough than I had anticipated.  I conquered one month of boot camp and I knew it was still going to be hard but not from the start.  Then again, my week off was not truly spent off because I had early and super late dance practices all last week.  When working out this morning I started to question my sanity for doing this to myself yet again, but loving it at the same time. It feels like I exerted so much of my energy and self-motivation into the last session of boot camp that I do not even know how I will do it again.  One thing I do know is that I can do it regardless.  I am only as weak as I think I am, therefore I will not think I am weak.  People limit themselves based off of what they think they can accomplish.  It is important to know that you can accomplish anything you set your mind to.  Sometimes when I lose motivation to keep everything up I look at the fitness pinboards on Pinterest.  Sounds kind of lame, but they are really inspiring.  When you're lacking motivation don't give in to defeat, remember how far you have come and be proud of yourself.

Saturday, March 10, 2012


Yesterday marked the end of week 4 of boot camp which meant time to complete the 2nd bench mark test:

 3/4 mile run
100 push ups
100 bent over rows
100 speed curls
100 jump squats
50 squat thrusts 
50 tricep extensions
3/4 mile run

On my first bench mark test my time was 34:30 and I was able to shave off a sufficient amount of time in 3 weeks to complete in 31:10!!! It was such an awesome feeling to know that in just 3 weeks I had improved in so many ways. There are still days where I "feel fat" and get down about myself...those do not just go away instantly when they are something that you are accustomed to. In these times I try to remember what I have been able to accomplish due to my body's abilities. Being able to make it through something like the bench mark test is such a milestone for anyone. Staying positive can be hard at times but it is key to not get down on yourself. When you defeat yourself is when you start to spiral out of control and let all the hard work you've put into what you've done go to waste. You are beautiful inside and out, so do not let your mind distort the image you see in the mirror. 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


Half way through week 4 and although I suffered a minor injury I would like to say I am still KILLING IT! Woke up and I could actually walk without my hip flexor hurting, so today was an immediately better day. With exercises involving my legs being limited I focused more today on my arm strength. It is such an indescribably amazing feeling when you realize that you are physically stronger in an area you used to consider your weakest. While everyone went out for the 1/2 mile run I stayed behind and did partner boxing with my trainer. She worked with my for every single modification needed because she knew how important it is to not strain my hip flexor even further. Some people need a Jillian Michaels type trainer, but my trainer is...well...much nicer! Don't get me run, she will push you when she needs to but her gentle nature makes her a fun person to be around and approachable.  Well boot camp was a great start to my hump day!

To make it an even better day I finally went grocery shopping!!! YAY! It has been on my to do list for too many days. I usually shop at Safeway because I use my family's club card and automatically assumed I was getting the best deals. Being a bit of a "health nut"...depending on the week I use that term lightly lol...I have always wanted to shop at Trader Joes but I always thought it was more expensive than Safeway. I did a little research and it turns out that Trader Joes is actually slightly cheaper than Safeway in most product comparisons. Trader Joes buys the food but packages it with their own label, making it cheaper for them to produce and cheaper for us to buy. The environment at Trader Joes is also such a healthy one, yes I get a healthy vibe there lol. I feel like my choices are all closer to the realm of healthy eating than in a large store such as Safeway. When grocery shopping I normally avoid almost anything with a calorie content over 200 because in my mind that was always way too much, but as part of my new attitude I am keeping in mind that I need to eat more to keep my metabolic rate up, esp with all the working out I am doing. It is important to keep in mind that in order to exert the mass amounts of energy we all like to we need to actually give our bodies energy as well. There are so many healthy options out there now-a-days, so no one can use the excuse that healthy food is bland or disgusting. I would love to chat more but I have to go to of a college girl! In the meantime, check out these healthy cooking blogs.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Every day is a learning experience...we never know all there is to know and should never close our minds to things we are often too ignorant to realize. Although today's lesson is one that seems like a no brainer when you have a skewed mindset and perception of your body it is easy to push  yourself too hard. My lesson today was that it is okay to be hurt. No one likes to get/be hurt, but it happens. I expect far too much from myself sometimes and push the limits to a dangerous extreme. Losing sight of my goals is what often leads me to do stupid things that end up hurting. Yesterday I went to boot camp and felt a little bit of pain in my hip flexor but chose to ignore it. After my afternoon class I went to the gym and was feeling pretty good so I decided to alternate between walking on incline, running, and sprinting. My hip flexor started to hurt even more but I thought I could just walk it out...unfortunately that was not going to help. Last night after work I had dance practice where I began by taking it easy during warm-ups and was marking most of the moves in the routine...until I got carried away and started practicing full out. During practice my hip flexor did not hurt but as soon as practice was over and I walked to my hurt to just walk. This morning I woke up hoping it would be better, but it was not. At boot camp I felt the pain as well and I tried extremely hard to do everything full out, but I had to face the fact that I was hurt and ask for some modifications for a few of the exercises.
My mindset is that if I am not doing something full out that everyone else is doing then I am failing. This is a common mindset among people, especially athletes. There is so much pressure we put on ourselves to exceed, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but when it comes to your well-being it is bad. It is important to keep in mind that being hurt is not the end of the world, but continuing to workout through the pain could be the end of the world. The most minor injuries can turn into the biggest due to ignorance. My hip flexor may be badly pulled right now, but if I do the necessary treatments and rest to take care of it then hopefully by the end of the week it will be better. 
Finding the fine line between when to push harder and when to ease up can be very hard for people who hard fiercely driven to exceed at all costs. My biggest fear in not being able to perform all of the exercises today was that somehow it made me less successful and I was going to gain weight..sounds rediculous right?! That's because it is. The way my mind works when it comes to things in regards to my body is illogical. I have my good days and bad days when it comes to my views of my body and life..we all have our ups and downs but I am trying to actively diminish my downs. I am trying to look at this as a learning experience. I love working out and if i want to continue to go hard and get the healthy toned body i want, i need to take good care of it. 
The road to obtaining the body we want is going to have bumps along the way, if it didn't then it would be easy. Nothing in life worth having is ever easy. I don't know about anyone else, but victory tastes so much sweeter knowing i worked by A** off to get there! I've hit a bump in the road but that does not mean I am not going to reach my goal, nor does it mean I am a failure. Word of advice: Take care of your body and try to prevent injuries as best as you can by listening to your body. Here is a link for some preventative exercises :)
Hip Flexor Exercises
Prevent Groin Strain

Prevent Shin Splints

It is easy to squeeze these exercises into your normal routing and well worth it in the end when you are able to walk around injury free!

Monday, March 5, 2012

ANDDD WEEK 4 BEGINS! I have no idea where the last 3 weeks have gone. Waking up at 5am now almost feels normal and when I attempted to sleep in this weekend my body thought 7:30am was a good sleeping in time.

HOLY COW!!! Just when I thought I was getting the hang of this whole boot camp thing...WHAM...slap in the booty! The best slap in the booty ever though. Turns out week 4 of boot camp is the hardest week, because it is the last of this session ending with my 2nd bench marker test on Friday. We did cardio HELL today (jumping jacks, speed squats, skaters, and mountain climbers on repeat cycle until the trainer says stop) and I was less out of breath than last week when we did it. Right after cardio HELL we went into Triplets (3 sets of exercises, 45s each with a small rest between rounds). We did 3 different rounds of triplets which made me think my body parts were falling apart by the end. Getting through today I kept in mind how far I have come. I have realized that I no longer put myself down when I cannot fully achieve a certain exercise. It is okay if you cannot do a certain exercise all out the first time you do it, just means you have another goal to read. Arm strength is something I have always lacked and today we did spiderman push-ups where when you go down for the push-up you bring your knee to your elbow...oh man did those burn sooo GOOD. Although I was unable to do the spiderman push-ups all out, I still did them. I did not give up. People often put themselves down when they cannot perform a task as it is "supposed" to be done, but what really matters is that you truly put forth 100% and do the best you can. In time, if you keep working at it, you will be able to do it. It is such an amazing feeling to be able to see yourself get better at something you first struggled with. My friends ask me why I do boot camp and do not just go to the gym and as much as I hate to admit it, it is because I cannot push myself as hard at the gym as I do at boot camp. Life is hectic and kicking my own butt every day just is not in the cards for me. Going to boot camp there is a structured workout set up for me while I am surrounded by people working to achieve the same exact things. The environment I am in at boot camp gives me the extra push I need to go above and beyond even my own expectations. I always knew I had more potential, but I just never gave myself enough credit thinking that I could only achieve so much. You are only as strong as your weakest do not have any weak thoughts and you will be stronger than you ever imagined. Get out there and KICK SOME BUTT, believe in yourself, and set higher goals because you CAN accomplish them.