Exclusively Lifting

It is day 20 of exclusively Lifting weights – yep that means NO cardio (with the exception of some long walks with Zoe).

I am following (once again) the Livefit trainer by Jamie Eason. Out of all the programs I have tried… Livefit is my favorite. Not only have I been successful on the program, (got me in the best shape of my life) but it just makes since. It is easy to follow and it is the way I personally like to lift in the gym. Of course I always customize the program to my needs, sometimes incorporating different exercises I prefer from other programs.

Anyway, the first phase (4 weeks) is all about gaining as much strength and muscle as you can. And because cardio can eat up your muscles or make it harder for you to gain, cardio is eliminated from the first phase.

And because of pregnancy, I haven’t trained like this in about a year, so it has been nice just to focus on one thing- weight lifting.

My experience so far…

Damn! Even though I have pretty much lost most of the baby weight. I am definitely starting from scratch. Appearance wise- My legs and booty have never been this skinny, my boobs have never been this big. So as you can see my body is the complete opposite of what it use to be. With that being said, it is amazing how with only three weeks of lifting, I am already starting to see some change – my glutes are starting to make a come back.

However, I am not focusing on what my body looks like but rather how it can perform.¬†Muscle memory¬†is an amazing thing. I get to the weight room and it is like riding a bike, right back at it. The first two weeks I took things slow, grabbing lighter weights and working on form. I see it all the time… people lifting heavy who have no business lifting that way because their form is so poor. I definitely do not want to be that girl trying to lift heavy with poor form – I might as well be on my road bike riding with out a helmet. So in the beginning I really focused on form, and now I feel ready and I am upping the weights.

Some of the exercises, I will do a warm up set with lighter weights, just to make sure my form is good and muscles are ready. It is then that I realize I need to up the weight. But there are some exercises mainly body weight exercise, such as push ups or bench dips that I struggle to finish the set. So weird that some exercises surprise me because I need to lift heavier, while others surprise me because they are a struggle when they use to be a piece of cake. I think this is because my core muscles need to be rebuilt. Because of this I am doing as many weight lifting exercises in plank so I am with out doubt engaging my core.

Anyway, I am not weighing myself until the end of the program. I am not worrying about numbers like that because they mean nothing to me. I am more concerned about hitting new PRs in the gym and getting stronger. Plus muscle weighs more than fat, so in this first phase I may not see a drop in weight at all, because I’m hoping for muscle gains. I will post progress pics though.

Diet is 80-90% of the reason why people see results.  This week I am really cleaning up my diet, by eating clean organic mostly plant based. I am also cutting back on sugar, and drinking more water. When trying to put on more muscle you need to eat. Muscle gains are supported by calories. So I will try to eat (clean) every 2-3 hours.
Below is a picture I posted on instagram,  on Day 17 of the Livefit trainer РNO cardio, exclusively lifting!Trying to gain as much muscle/strength back before I start running again. ***FITNESS TIP of the Day: try to do every weight lifting exercise you can in a plank. For example: Tricep Dumbbell Kickbacks or One Arm Dumbbell Row are more challenging when in a plank. That way you are definitely engaging your core. #fitmom #fitspo #girlswholift #liftheavy #livefit

Follow me on Instagram @sweat1xdaily

© 2015 sweat1xdaily

 

Nursery: To do, or NOT to do.

When you are pregnant, you get asked the same questions over and over. One of the repetitive questions asked is – “Do you have the baby’s nursery ready?” Everyone wants to know what color scheme and cute baby theme the nursery will be. And although, coming up with ideas, and putting the nursery together is one of the most fun things to do to prepare for your baby, it isn’t a top priority.¬†

At first the questions about the baby’s room really annoyed me. I always have a long list of more important things to accomplish. For example, finding a pediatrician, and researching delayed cord clamping, although these things are not as fun as interior design, they are much more important.

Plus, your baby doesn’t really know what they are looking at. With that being said, all of the cute nursery accessories are not really for baby, but rather to please mom.

I didn’t worry too much about the baby’s room. And, when it comes to baby stuff, I have tried to stay as minimalist as possible. At this point, I have the essentials, and feel successful with keeping things minimal. But even the essentials need to be put away somewhere.

However, as time went on… suddenly, my mind changed… I had a total change of heart.

Maybe it was the urge to nest. Maybe it was the pile of baby stuff, in the corner of my living room. ¬†Whatever it was… at 8 months pregnant, I found myself eager to start putting the baby’s room together.

In late June, when we got home from Martha’s Vineyard, I had a total freak out. I literally started to cry, sobbing, “There is shit everywhere, and the baby’s room isn’t done.”

My husband came to the rescue! I will never forget his response. He calmly said, “Babe, I got this shit.” Then he ran upstairs and painted the baby’s room and set up the crib.

Now, I’m not the type of person to half ass a job. If I’m going to do something, I give it my all. So now that¬†I have decided to prepare a nursery, I’m going all out. ¬†After that, I was able to organize things. We got a bookcase from Pottery Barn baby. We ordered a rug. Blinds went up. Things were looking good. My baby more than anyone, deserves a beautiful space in our home, to call her own.

I will reveal our baby’s nursery in a later post. But for now, I would like to share with you some baby rooms that inspired me. I used these rooms as a guide to help me create my own.

Our color scheme for our baby’s nursery is Gray walls, White furniture, and accents of Pink. ¬†Our theme is¬†elephants.¬†Elephants are special to my husband and I because we visited an elephant sanctuary when we were in Thailand. We have a special love for elephants. And we plan to frame photos of us riding the elephants we played with in Chang Mai.

1) The picture below goes with our color scheme. I love the pink window treatments, shelves, chandelier, crib, mirror, and dresser with changing pad on top. cafdd8e9466edb60d8020eddd0233c25

2) Again photo below has our color scheme. I like the mirror, the chandelier, the photo gallery, and the dresser with changing pad idea. 2a6221f6c824215cc3799b53ae34bf25

3) Photo below has our color scheme. I love the pink window treatments, with a decorative rug. I also love the chandelier. We are planning on keeping our window treatments simple because we have a pattern on our rug.

ec9dd668cd59d46e95742bf170177031

4) In the photo below, I like the chandelier, the mobile, and the pink elephant toy.31be20d080f5f87553043a83fc9d62c7

5) The photo below has our color scheme. I like the¬†chandelier, and the elephant stuffed animal. I also like the window treatments. This is another option for us, if we can’t find pink black out curtains that we like.¬†3eb175da4aaeaccb08e367f4e1a3a91d

 

6) The room below is my FAVORITE!! I absolutely love this room. The crib in this picture is the exact same one we have for our baby. I love the mirror, the crib skirt, the shelves, and the gold dot decals. I also love the vintage dresser, with changing pad on top.

009ca98875228a0b002edd22f58059737) I LOVE this sitting area – that can be used for nursing or reading. At the moment we do not have a space for a chair because we still have a full size bed and adult dresser in the room. But I absolutely love this. I did get a basket. Baskets can be used in many different ways. I also have a fuzzy pillow in gray. I hope to have a space similar to this in the near future.

3fe44e2511d68bc61127200f6ced18c28) I love all the elephants in this room. If you love elephants and need to create a gender neutral room, this room would be great inspiration for you. d04c63782f5d0220b9a1cfd8933168129) I love this big elephant toy. I also love the shag rug and the black crib, similar style to the one we got for our baby, but in black instead of white.

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10) Below is the exact crib we have, but in black instead of white. I also love the small chandelier in this photo. I love the framed art Рwe are doing white frames and pink frames instead of black. The rug in the picture is similar to the one we have, but in blue instead of pink. 82702546eba93384e7c5555220d23571

 

11) In this last picture I am going to share with you, I love all the elephants, the shelves, and the dresser with the changing pad on top. The rug is very similar to the one we have in our baby’s room, but blue instead of pink.¬†50f32e65bb6c02cc8b858e3bf06569ce12) If you are really into books. This reading corner is a very fun idea. The way to collect a ton of children’s books is to have people bring your books instead of cards for your baby shower.

a9d75d30adb96a08f47b089a4a328a88Anyway, these were all of the photos that most inspired me on setting up the perfect nursery for my baby. I hope they help inspire you as much as they did for me. I promise to share with you in the near future some photos of my baby’s room.

but in the mean time…

I would love to hear from you… please comment below…

Do you think it is a necessity to have a baby’s nursery?

What is your favorite color scheme and theme for a baby nursery?

© 2015 sweat1xdaily

 

 

 

The Courage Wall in my neighborhood goes VIRAL!

Every Saturday, at my prenatal yoga class, Sarah, my yoga instructor sets a theme for our daily practice. Two weeks ago, the theme was Courage. She was inspired by the Courage Wall that sits across the street from the studio.Courage wall

The wall is a big chalk board that reads¬†the words, “I wish I had the Courage to…”¬†Courage wall words

There are buckets of chalk provided, to allow people the opportunity to express their deepest fears, challenges, goals. The wall has inspired, motivated, and opens up the Courage conversation to the community.

So at the beginning of yoga class, we went around the room and verbally expressed what we wish we had the courage to do during our pregnancies. It was very awesome, because we could all relate to each other. I found myself nodding my head when one yogi said, she wish she had the courage to ask for help. Another yogi wished she had the courage to stop working sooner with out feeling guilty. One wished she had the courage to physically slow down. Many of us think we can do exactly what we were doing physically before we got pregnant, but that is not always the case.

Then just last week, my jaw dropped, while I was watching the Today show and saw the Courage Wall. I had no clue the wall went viral. But there it was on TV, with Matt Lauer interviewing Nancy Belmont, from Alexandria, Virginia, as she explained the community chalkboard project.

Courage Wall Today show

After yoga this week, while I was heading to the Del Ray farmers market – they have the best strawberries. I walked passed the wall, and saw Nancy the lady from the Today show interview. I immediately congratulated her for the interview on the Today show, and told her how amazing the Courage wall is. She had a film crew with her, and asked if I would do a small interview on film. So I did.

I wrote on the wall…

I wish I had the Courage to…

Let loose, and be less controlling. Be carefree, go with the flow. Courage Wall Aspiration

I explained to her, that I have never thought of myself as a controlling person, until I got pregnant. I’m not controlling when it comes to other people, but I like to be in control of myself, physically and mentally. But one of the hardest things I have learned is during pregnancy, you have no control over anything. ¬†All you can do, is be the best healthiest person you can be. But at end of the day, you really just need to trust in your body, to create and grow a baby for you.

She totally agreed with me…

Then she asked me, “What’s going to happen when the baby comes…”

I told her… I’ve read one baby book, and am currently reading more. By reading the baby books, I will definitely have the information I need. But I don’t know exactly how it will be… I need to meet my baby first. I can plan as much as I want, but it may not go as planned or maybe it will. ¬†I am hoping to have some control, but again, I don’t know exactly what will happen, so I need to be a little flexible and just roll with it. Although, it may sound that I am unsure right now, one thing that I am very confident about, is that everything will be amazing and work out just the way it is meant to be. I’m excited and can’t wait!

As she smiled, she agreed with me, telling me she has three children, and that’s exactly how it goes.

Has anyone else seen the Courage Wall? Do you have one in your neighborhood?

If you are in Alexandria, Va, I highly recommend you, stop by the Courage Wall and write an aspiration. Reading others, will bring you inspiration too.  Also watch the interview on the Today show, here.

© 2015 sweat1xdaily

 

 

Spring Cleaning: New Season, New Goals

Although, we are still having some chilly days, Spring has officially sprung. My winter blues are finally gone. It is amazing what a difference the spring air does to my mood. I am much more energized these days.

Along with the start of this new season, and this new found energy, I am setting some new goals. These goals range from, diet and fitness to house and garden – this Spring there is a lot on my agenda.

Home & Garden

I am going to begin with my home.

My husband and I have owned our 1945 duplex in the DC area for about 3 years now. I have written blog posts about it in the past, but for those who are new to reading this blog, when we moved in we had absolutely no furniture. It sounds a bit weird, but none of the furniture we owned previously was worthy enough to move over to our new place. By leaving our old stuff on the curb, it left us with a blank canvas for designing our new home together. I highly recommend this! It is important for couples to move into a place together and build an interior space that really reflects both of them as individuals, but also expresses their identity as a couple.c44fe257f8631560a0f6e3f0a5e135f4Over the last 3 years, little by little, by collecting things we love, our house has become our home.

Having patience is key!¬†Although this is a tip of mine, it definitely was a struggle at first. When moving in I desperately wanted to feel settled. This unsettling feeling can make you take the easy way out, and just buy whatever for the time being, but I didn’t want to waste my money on temporary pieces. I wanted to purchase higher quality furniture, that would last. However, along with higher quality comes a greater expense. I also didn’t want to just fill the space with pieces because I need them, I wanted the right furniture for the space. Older houses have smaller spaces. So this put me on an epic hunt, for furniture that had the charm I was looking for, but was small enough. I had to get creative, and have patience, but as time went on, I fount my house filling up. It is a successful mix of new higher quality staple pieces, with vintage finds.

This is how we went about it..

The first year we were here, we focused on purchasing some big items, couch, bed, dining room table. We wanted these items to be high quality pieces that would last. So we spent the money on custom made pieces from Ethan Allen.

The second year, we focused on accent pieces, such as side tables, lamps, rugs, shower curtain, etc. We also used our front porch to make a peaceful outdoor space. It is there that, we can enjoy a latte while lounging on the wicker love-seat.

shower curtain

This last year, I finally purchased some major pieces that I was on a desperate hunt for. My major challenge has been finding furniture to fit such small spaces. Because most USA furniture is larger, I had to get creative. I ended up refinishing an old antique dresser. I finally found a beautiful hutch for my kitchen/dinning room, to store my Vitamix and other kitchen appliances. I replaced the ugly old dinning room over-head light with a beautiful rustic chandelier. And then, my husband made a coffee table from an old whiskey barrel, that we found in Fredericksburg. It is the prefect hight, width, and gives us that rustic feel that I love.

light

dresser diy

 

coffee table

This spring we have some new house projects to accomplish. Some are fun, others are necessary.

  • Replace Windows – which we just accomplished on Easter Weekend! They are beautiful!¬†
  • Replace Furnace
  • Replace Fence
  • Put up new blinds or shades
  • Paint 3 rooms
  • Clean up Yard
  • Start Garden

We did our research, and finally in March, we decided on a custom made window replacement. And this Easter weekend, Window Nation came over and completed the project. So one of the necessary house project is now checked off the list. The windows are beautiful and much more energy efficient. Soon we will be picking out blinds or shades.

dining room

As for the others on the list, we are still coming up with a game plan, but I would have to say one thing I am most excited about is my veggie garden that I will be starting up again this season. I normally do a garden every year, but last year, because of my wedding, it was impossible for me to devote the time to a garden. I missed it so much.

This year I can’t wait to watch things grow, and enjoy fresh veggies from my backyard. I also can’t wait to hit up all the local farmer’s markets. I hope you look forward to some gardening posts in the near future.

Diet & Fitness

As for diet, like always, my plan is to eat well balance meals that are made up of fresh organic food. Lately, fruit is the number one thing I crave and my refrigerator has been stocked with it. However, fruit taste so much sweeter when it is in season. I am really excited to eat watermelon again, and have tons of fresh fruit to make juices and smoothies. I want to be cooking and grilling up a storm this summer. I am looking forward to trying new recipes and keeping things colorful.

Fitness wise, I will admit I have taken it down a notch. When it comes to running, it was too snowy and icy this winter. I look forward to getting some short easy runs in once the weather warms up. But what I have really am getting into is yoga and swimming. I also want to attempt some hiking this season.

So those are my future healthy lifestyle goals. Yesterday was 75 degrees. And this week is suppose to continue to stay in the  60s.

This weekend, my husband and I are heading down to Del Ray Beach, and South Beach Miami. I can’t wait to soak up some sun, and eat some Cuban food.

I want to hear form you…

What are some of your home projects? What are your goals for the spring?

© 2015 sweat1xdaily

 

Love your Body.

It is Valentine’s day.

And, in honor of¬†Valentine’s day, we are going to celebrate LOVE.

But I’m going to challenge you…

for a moment to forget about the red roses, the jewelry, the chocolate, cupid, and whether you have a valentine or not.

Instead, I am going to challenge you to celebrate yourself, your accomplishments. I am going to ask you today,¬†to start loving your body, no matter what…

I have been very inspired by some amazing ladies who are going above and beyond. On facebook, Paige, Fran, and Sophia have been working hard on living a healthy fit lifestyle, during pregnancy and post baby. All of them have had babies with in the last year, and they are not only looking amazing, but defining every day, what it means to live a healthy lifestyle.

Paige has taken her yoga to the next level, and actually has started teaching classes, while cooking healthy meals for her kids. Fran has taken a different approach, by focusing on a nutritional program, cleansing her body. Sophia has been hitting the gym hard, and eating clean, even on days when she hasn’t gotten much sleep. All of these ladies have been making their healthy lifestyle one of their top priority, even with little ones by their sides. Pretty amazing!

So this Valentine’s day, lets celebrate YOU. ¬†Always remember, it is not about¬†what your¬†body looks like, but what it can do. ¬†Because what it looks like… doesn’t really matter… When you are running faster, running further, lifting heavier, stretching deeper, climbing higher, and for the mom’s out there, creating life. Your body is capable of some pretty incredible things. So lets start loving it! Earning your dream body is a perk, but the long lasting health benefits is so much sweeter. A pretty body is nice to look at, but can it perform? At the end of the day health is the ultimate goal, and nothing compares to, a Strong Healthy life.¬†

Screen-Shot-2014-02-05-at-6.01.39-PM

 

Paige, Fran, and Sophia РThanks for always inspiring me, you ladies  are beautiful in every way. Not only do your results look amazing, but they prove your bodies can perform. You define a healthy lifestyle and continue to inspire! Keep up the hard work!

© 2015 sweat1xdaily

 

Start Something New!

Hey lovelies!

I know, I know, I have been MIA! But honestly, I needed a break. So after my last Christmas post, I stopped writing and reading blogs, and just shut down… I barely checked facebook or instagram either. Social media was actually becoming overwhelming. So I knew it was time to take 2 weeks away.

Quick Update

During this break, my best friend, Mariana, came home from Sri Lanka. She is so pregnant. So we have been hanging out, and catching up. The baby is a boy and he is coming in 5 weeks. Her baby shower is this weekend. Exciting!

Together, we got to check out the health and fitness expo, and Union Market.

The expo was not what I expected. Because I am use to marathon expos, I expected it to be more fitness focused. But instead it was catered to people who are interested in starting a healthy lifestyle, not ones already living it. I expected more supplement vendors, and equipment vendors. On the positive side, Mind the Mat yoga studio was there, and they were worth seeing and supporting. (I’ve been to Mind the Mat, and it is an awesome studio.)

Union Market (although small,) is more than I expected. If you are a foodie, you will love it. It is basically a gourmet food court. There is also a really awesome shop, with house stuff, baby stuff, jewelry, lotions, etc. great for gifts. Because Mariana was with me, we loved all the super cute baby stuff! I definitely will be going back. If you come to the DC area, you must check it out.

Start something New!

2015

2014 was very hard to say goodbye to. It was a very special year for Erik and I. In February, we shared an amazing adventure to the oh so exotic country, Thailand. And then in June, we exchanged vows, and promised to love each other for eternity, aka, we got hitched! So although, 2014 has come and gone, it will always hold a special spot in our hearts.

2015 a lot has happened

But now, two weeks in 2015, the new year is here in full force. I usually by now have a new years resolution. In the past, I have had pretty creative ones, such as, Try one new interesting exotic food, I have never tried before, once a week. (Want to loose weight, try this one.)
2015 this is my year
But this year it has been hard to come up with one. I have been having a hard time because in 2014 I have become a huge goal setter. By constantly setting goals and reaching them, I don’t feel the need to set a new year resolution as much as I did in the past. Anyway, because it is tradition, I am going to set one. I don’t really want it to be too fitness focused because I am not weak in that area. I’m bored and just want something new and different.
My main focus this year for fitness and food is BALANCE. I want to be healthy, not obsessive. I have a pretty addictive personality so balance is something I need to work on.
Food and Nutrition: New Years Resolution, Goal
When it comes to food and nutrition, my goals are simple, boring, but necessary, drink more water, quit eating sugar, bring my lunch to work. 
Fitness, Running: New Years Resolution, Goal
Continue to Run and lift consistently Рto be healthy and have fun. Focus on yoga! Not bikram, I want to be upside down more.
2015 New Years Resolution: Goal, focus on Balance, Creativity and Start something New.
New Years Resolution: Goal- Balance
This year I am going to focus on balance when it comes to fitness and food.
New Years Resolution: Goal- Creativity 
I am also going to be even more creative in everything I do. This means more fashionable. Creating more art. Knitting more.
New Years Resolution: Goal- Start
But my main goal in 2015 is to Start something New. I don’t know what that new thing is yet, but I’m excited to report back to you guys, once I discover what it is. I am excited to write a blog post at the end of this year, with what I have explored. Can’t wait!
2015 best
What’s your focus for 2015? Are you planning on starting something new?
If you need tips on keeping your resolutions and goals click here.
© 2015 sweat1xdaily

Hello December, I am a Goal Digger!

After getting my wisdom teeth pulled at the end of October, my stress level finally went down. November began stress free, and I became aware of the cheerful holiday spirit, which was making its first appearance. The month was full of crisp fall runs, colorful leaves, and lots of big bold fall flavors. November ended, with a relaxing thanksgiving holiday surrounded by friends and family- there was lots to be thankful for. Yesterday, I said my final goodbyes to November, and today I am saying Hello to December.

goal hello december

December is an interesting month, because it is the last month of the year. People get so wrapped up in the traditions of Christmas that they forget to focus on goal setting. Yes, December is the the month to celebrate Christmas, but it is also the month to reach your final goals of 2014 and start to set new ones for 2015. In 30 days we will be saying goodbye to one year and hello to another. goal1

Time to be a …goal digger

A couple of my December Goals are…

 

Personal Christmas related:

  • Celebrate Christmas! Get my Christmas tree, and decorations up. Christmas only happens once a year, so the sooner I can get my Christmas decorations up the better. Time is flying by and if I wait too long, I won’t have much time to really enjoy it. I don’t over decorate. I have a tree, and a few things here and there. One of the joys of being a home owner is the fun of decorating, but if you rent you can decorate too. I choose pretty Christmas decorations, over funny tacky ones. One of my favorite thing about decorations is the warm white lighting the Christmas tree lights give off. I also love the smell of a live tree. The reason why it is important to decorate is because it really does lift your spirits and reminds you to take in all of the holiday cheer.
  • Decide if I am going to give out Christmas cards this year. We only have 25 days until Christmas.
  • Figure out who I need to buy for. I already bought a couple gifts, but I need to finalize my list and shop, shop, shop. I want to shop at Christmas markets and specialty shops.

Health and Fitness Goals:

  • Continue cooking my own food. The more I cook, the more I know exactly what I am eating. Plus cooking is fun, and eating my own food is satisfying! Abs are made in the Kitchen! Update blog more with delicious recipes.
  • Continue to read labels and reduce sugar intake. I QUIT SUGAR remember (wink wink) Set goals for 2015.
  • Run, Lift, Yoga. Start thinking of goals for 2015, and races.

House and Home:

  • It is amazing how much we have done with my little 1950’s duplex. Two years ago we started with nothing, (we¬†were sitting on beach chairs in the living room, because we didn’t have a couch.) But thats what it takes when you want to start from scratch. Things have really come along. I can’t wait to share with you some of our DIY projects.

Blog:

  • This month on the blog get ready for a lot of GIFT IEAS.¬†I’m going to be telling you the best gifts for runners, yogis, and gym unicorns. I am also going to be talking about what to get your foodie. So if you need Holiday Gift Ideas. Stay tuned.

Happy December 1!

goal holidays

 

What are your December Goals? What are your December traditions? What do you want for Christmas? Leave a comment below.

© 2014 sweat1xdaily

I don’t like labels.

Last weekend, I went to DC VegFest. It was totally cool hanging out with all of those vegans and vegetarians. ¬†The Veg community¬†is a very friendly group, and most wanted to know my story. I was asked by a couple different people, ¬†“What brought you to VegFest today? Are you vegan?”

My answer to that questions is…

No. I don’t feel it comfortable or necessary to label myself as anything. I don’t want to follow rigid rules of any kind, when it comes to food – I am too much of a foodie to be so restrictive and disciplined. I simply want to eat a healthy well balanced diet – full of color, flavor, and texture. And although, I eat and cook mostly organic plant based, I¬†am opened minded, adventurous, and willing to explore all different types of food lifestyles.

I recently found my new favorite blog called, My New Roots. When reading Sarah’s (the owner of the blog) About page, I thought to myself, ” Wow! She nailed it. This is exactly how I feel.”

Sarah says, “The only label I‚Äôll slap on myself is ‚Äúwhole-food-lover.” Nothing makes me feel better, think better, and look better than whole foods! And the big bonus? I¬†never¬†count calories or worry about my weight because I know that if I eat this way, my body will be in a perfect state of balance and health, naturally.”

I agree with her 100%. Although, my diet is mainly plant based, consisting of veggies, fruit, grains, beans, quinoa, nuts and seeds, I still can not label myself as vegetarian or vegan.¬†There has been weeks in which I have gone meatless, but there are days you can find me eating a greek yogurt. ¬†I absolutely love eggs and eat them a couple times a week. I also can’t live without fish. My favorite thing about summer time is eating a Maryland crab feast or a Lobster bake on Martha’s Vineyard.

If you are vegetarian or vegan, your main priority is eliminating all animal products. But the most important thing to me is that everything I eat is organic and whole. It is a very rare day, if you find me eating something that is not organic. I avoid GMOs and processed foods. I try to buy everything from local farms, and eat seasonally. If I am eating eggs, they are from cage free hens eating an organic feed. When I eat fish, I only eat wild caught. And on the rare occasion that I eat dairy or any other animal product, it must be treated as humanely as possible, free of antibiotics and hormones.

There are times in which I love labels, and there are times in which I hate them. There are some labels that are simple, while others are more complicated. The times in which I love them is when they are simple and define ones identity. The times in which I hate them are when they are complicated and become stereotypes.  I can label myself as a marathon runner, simply because I run marathons. But, I can not label myself as vegan or vegetarian, although I often cook and eat that way.

I bought this pendant from a vendor at VegFest…

 

Plant Strong 2Plant Strong

 

It says, Plant Strong.

So if I must come up with a label, Plant Strong is a pretty awesome one. I also love the label that Sarah from My New Roots came up with РWhole Food Lover.  Add organic to it and slap it on me.

What’s your label?¬†

© 2014 sweat1xdaily

 

DC VegFest

Today was a fun and fulfilling Saturday.

The sun was shining and there wasn’t a drop of humidity in the air. It was the perfect day for a quick five mile loop around the monuments. 10653611_10102009897351646_5078060190360476724_nI wore my new running shoes, Newton Gravity. I also wore my new running watch, Garmin 620. It was my absolute first time wearing the watch and I loved it. ¬†However,¬†I will be writing a detailed review on the Garmin 620 later this week so stay tuned.

10702231_10102009114106276_1414548754899070551_nThen it was off to DC VegFest

The DC VegFest was located in South East DC at the Yards Park right along the river. Growing up in the DC area, South East was a part of the city you always tried to avoid, it was poor and dangerous. But now, it tells a different story. The famous Eastern Market is located in South East, and eastern market is one of my favorite markets in the area. There are also some really cool bars and restaurants on the neighboring streets.

But today, the VegFest took me to another area in South East. I would have never thought to go down to the waterfront. Wow! Things are changing everyday. Check out how cool the South East waterfront is…

dc water

DC waterfront

DC water rest

After walking around the waterfront my friend and I headed over to DC VegFest. 10625143_10102009396749856_5438624594030666857_n

DC VegFest

DC Veg Fest

At the DC VegFest, there were some fabulous vendors, delicious plant based food, free samples, and amazing guest speakers.

SPEAKERS

I didn’t get to see all of the¬†speakers, but I saw a couple. They discussed the health benefits of living a vegan lifestyle. They also touched on politics, and environmental reasons for becoming vegan. They touched on animal cruelty, and some told their personal stories of why they went veg. The last speaker of the event was actually on the October cover of Runner’s World, wearing vegan compression socks.

VENDORS

Veg Fest soapsThere were some awesome vendors at the festival, but this soap vendor was by far my favorite. I have been using this sugar based shower gel from Blue Mercury which has been irritating my skin. Sugar is bad for you in every way.¬†¬†So when I saw this vendor, I thought perfect just what I needed. Buying soap here, saved me a trip to Sephora or Blue Mercury. All of the soap is free of animal products and both of the bars of soap I purchased have coconut oil in them. Coconut oil is my new obsession… (I will be writing a detailed post on the health benefits later this week so stay tuned.) The only negative thing I saw is that some of the soaps contain palm oil. Palm oil is in everything, and although it is not an animal product, it is not very vegan. Palm Tree farms in South East Asia, are taking away food and habitats from Elephant, Tigers, and many other animals. Anyway, I went home with two soaps a coconut one and and oatmeal one. The coconut soap is free of palm oil, but the oatmeal one may have some small amounts. Unfortunately, palm oil is hard to avoid.

FOODVeg Fest lunch

Going Veg is all about eating your veggies. If you go to DC VegFest next year, make sure you come with an appetite. There were tons of amazing food vendors and food trucks. A lot of the vendors only took cash, so make sure you bring cash. However, there are ATMs for those who forget. The food ranged from pizza to Indian, Ethiopian to mexican. There were sweets, and southern cooking, even greek.

Overall, I enjoyed DC VegFest!

I highly recommend VegFest for anyone who is already living a plant based lifestyle, and for those who are just interested to see what it is all about. At DC VegFest I learned a little more about animal cruelty, politics, and the environment. I also got the chance to eat some awesome plant based food, while learning how I can help create a better food system for the USA. And in my eyes, at the end of the day that is the most important thing. You are what you eat.

‚ÄúThat‚Äôs when I heard part of the secret. What we eat is a matter of life and death. Food is who we are.‚ÄĚ ¬†~ Scott Jurek

Stay tuned for some upcoming posts…

  1. Review on Garmin 620
  2. Coconut oil health benefits.

© 2014 sweat1xdaily

 

Fed Up! The most IMPORTANT blog post.

hey there!

I want to apologize for being MIA for the month of May. I have so much to catch you up on… ¬†And although I haven’t posted much, I have been one busy girl.¬†Travel, work, running, weight lifting, cooking, and wedding planning has consumed me, and continues to consume me. However… last week I was able to squeeze in some movie time with my good friend R (check out her fashion/lifestyle ¬†blog. It’s awesome!)

The movie we saw is called Fed Up (watch the trailer here.) Because it is a documentary it is only playing at the E Street Theater in DC. This is bitter sweet. The sweet part: I love the E Street Theater and was thankful the movie was playing in a theater in my area. The bitter part: After seeing the movie I felt so inspired. I wanted to shout from the roof tops, “Everyone should see this film.” ¬†Then I became really disappointed that only one theater is showing this film in my area. And what about other smaller towns? The odds are no theater is playing it.

That is the reason why I am claiming this to be one of the most important blog posts I have written. I am trying to spread the word about this film the fastest way I can, and there is no way faster than through social media. Please reblog this post and continue to spread the word.

Now about the movie…

I first heard about the movie Fed Up on Kris Carr’s facebook page. I can always count on Kris for keeping me inspired, informed, and updated. For those who don’t know Kris Carr – she is an amazing cancer surviver who wrote the book, Crazy Sexy Diet, and created the documentary, Crazy Sexy Cancer. I love her book, and watch her documentary often.

Anyway, she posted that Fed Up would premiere May, 9th. Immediately, I knew I had to see it. So I marked it in my calender and contacted R, the one friend I knew who would enjoy the film as much as I would.

This movie is a must see. It is about the American Diet, claiming that sugar is the reason why so many American’s are fat.

Ideas that were expressed in this film that really stuck with me…

  • Sugar is as addictive as cocaine. It releases the same signals from the brain to the body, the way cocaine does. One will drink a sugary coffee drink in the morning. It gives you a high, but in two hours the person feels tired and sluggish, then craving sugar again. People who are overweight, this includes children, continue to crave and often after loosing weight, they will gain it back. Bad habit and routine also causes weight gain. Poor education, not knowing what is healthy also causes weight gain.
  • Sugar without fiber is quickly processed by the liver and stored as fat. This includes fruit juice.
  • The body can not tell the difference between sugar and sugar replacements.
  • Honey, agave, nectars, although natural, are still forms of sugar and effect the body the same way as sugar does.
  • Scientists come up with different names for sugar, and companies label their product with these confusing names. The most common one being¬†high fructose corn syrup.
  • Buying low fat or fat free is not healthier for you. Most low fat or fat free items are processed. Scientists remove the fat and replace it with sugar or man made chemicals.
  • Companies focus on trendy diets in order to sell products. ¬†When low calorie diets were trendy they create products like Coke Zero. Creating products like Coke Zero¬†is just a math equation. It is easy for Scientists to remove calories, but when they remove something they need to replace it with something else – in most cases a chemical. At the end of the day hot pockets vs. lean hot pockets – both of them are equally junk food.¬†
  • Doctors go to medical school and prescribe medicine. In some extreme Doctors will even choose surgery. The problem is medicine and surgery only treats the symptoms. Being obese is a symptom. When children are overweight, there is a deeper reason why… In most cases their parents don’t know the difference between a healthy food vs. a non healthy food. Schools don’t have healthy options in the cafeteria.
  • Advertisements are also a huge reason why Americans are overweight.
  • Politics are also a huge reason why Americans are overweight. Do we want to be the richest nation or the healthiest? Can we have both?
  • This problem is becoming a Global issue.

Although, some of the content I already had knowledge on there were other ideas that were totally eye opening.

 

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Don’t forget to see this film, and bring your friends too. Spread the word!

Do you have a sweet tooth?

What is your favorite documentary?

© sweatdaily 2014

It’s not your regular old gym clothes…

This last year, I took a business building class. At this class, I had to describe my daily fashion identity by using only one adjective. This was a very hard task. I thought to myself, I am so many things. Some days I feel artsy, other days I feel sporty. Some days I dress edgy, while other days I wear vintage. I love mixing and matching. I easily find inspiration, everywhere.

Although, all of the above is true, I stared to narrow it down… there is one thing that all the above share. And whether what I am wearing is edgy, vintage, artsy, or sporty, what I realized is that in one way or another, they are all girly and feminine.

Do you remember Clueless?

This is by far one of my favorite movies from the 90s. I was 10 years old when it came out, and I remember watching this movie, thinking how cool all of their outfits were.

Look at those gym clothes…

Clueless

Now looking back, I realize that I was the Clueless one, and the point of putting them in these outfits was to show how clueless they were too.

There is no way that those gym clothes were functional. Try running a 5k in those and you would end up with horrible chaffing. Although, they were not functional, what they were, was trendy.

Trendy and fashionable is what I loved about the gym clothes worn by Cher in Clueless, back in the 90s. Today, Trendy, fashionable, and functional is what I look for in my running gear, yoga, and workout apparel.

I love fashion.

I love expressing myself.

I have done previous blog posts on fashionable gym clothes and functional running gear. Why? Because it is important! When you look good, you feel good. Specific clothing is made, for specific sports. When you wear the proper gear for whichever sport you are participating in you preform better.

So although the gym clothing in Clueless were not functional, they were trendy. Now a days you can have the best of both worlds. Now a days workout clothing, running gear, yoga apparel is both fashionable and functional.

I normally love lululemon, and I have to admit most of my wardrobe is lululemon. However, lately I am loving Athleta. In the past, I always thought Athleta looked older, like it catered to my mother’s age group. But right now it is looking trendy, for the younger fashionable athlete. I am loving everything.

After I made a couple purchases in the store, at the register, I was asked how I had heard about Athleta. I have always known about Athleta however, I was inspired to go to the store, because of this image I saw on instagram.

athleta 4

Who wouldn’t want to go it to the store after seeing this amazing image? I actually have been finding most of my inspiration from images posted on instagram. It is by far my favorite form of social media. I now follow Athleta along with some of my other favorite stores, and people. If you aren’t following me on instagram yet, do it, @dorseyml.

These are some other inspiring images. I actually have those pants!!

What athletic brands are your favorite? Do you shop at Athleta?

© 2014 sweatdaily

Other posts you may like…

Are you ready for some Thailand foodporn…

Okay lovelies! I am finally home from Thailand. My plane landed in the States last Saturday. Although, I have been home for a whole week, I was jet lagged, and just had to take some time to get back in gear. However, I have plenty of posts that I wrote while I was in Thailand, that I wasn’t able to post because of lack of wifi. So I will be updating you now!!¬†

I’m writing this blog post on a choppy motor boat from the Indian Ocean. So far on my trip to Thailand I have spent days in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Ko Samui, Ko Tao, and now I am in Phuket visiting the Ko Pi Pi Islands and Monkey Island. I have stepped foot in the Indian Ocean and the China Sea of the Pacific Ocean.

If you have been following my Instagram and Facebook pages you have seen everything I have been currently doing. Unfortunately, wifi here is really slow so it has been hard for me to blog. So I apologize for that and promise I will update you.

So let’s talk about my two favorite things food and fitness. The food here in Thailand has been absolutely amazing. However, I will admit I am feeling a tiny bit fluffy, (maybe I’m not actually fluffy, but I feel that way.) It may be water weight that I have been holding on to, because the food is so salty, heavy, spicy. This is definitely a love hate relationship I am having with Thai food. Don’t get me wrong I love it, but I hate that I have to eat out for every meal. I also hate that I am not able to eat 5-6 small meals a day, like I had been doing at home. I am on vacation in Thailand so I am enjoying my meals, and pretty much eating my way through Thailand. But hey, it’s only three weeks of my life, and I need to take advantage of being in this foreign land, because the opportunity may never arise again. With that being said, l am definitely not feeling as lean as I normally feel when I am back home. Let me explain why?

There are fruit stands with fresh fruit and juice bars everywhere. I love it and have been drinking tons of watermelon juice. (But too much fruit means too much sugar.)

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Yummy watermelon juice!

I have been hydrating with mainly coconut water straight from the coconut, bottled water, and tea, lots of tea. This isn’t making me feel fluffy. But although it is fun to drink coconut water right from the coconut, I will have to admit it taste exactly the same as Vita Coconut water.

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Also I have come to the conclusion that most locals get their meals by eating street food. The street food vendors literally line the streets like sardines in Bangkok.

In Chiang Mai, our taxi driver grabbed lunch from a random street food stand on the way to dropping us off at an Elephant camp – yes I played with elephants I’ll tell you more about that later. Also Chiang Mai is known for their night markets. They are every night, and are full of street food vendors. One vendor made us Pad Thai right in front of us. Other vendors already had their food prepared. It tasted amazing, but was a tad cold.

I love authentic street food, the only problem I have is that I don’t know exactly what is in it, what they use to cook with. Where the food came from. This is a major problem. How am I suppose to count my macros? Plus, I love to cook and prepare my own food. I am really starting to miss cooking a home cooked meal. By cooking my own food I can control what is in it. In Thailand I let go, took the risk, and just trusted the restaurants and street food vendors.

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As an American, we are told while traveling, never drink the water and never eat the street food. However, Thailand is known for it’s street food, and they take great pride in that. So I trusted the street food vendors, plus all of the locals eat it. Many locals have their favorite street vendors, and become regulars, just like we have regulars in local bars in the the States.

In Bangkok, it has been very difficult to communicate. This shocks me because it is such a huge city and I expected more people to speak English. Turns out the island areas are more touristy where most locals speak English and speak it well. In Bangkok, it was even hard to ask for a knife. It took a lot of hand gestures and pointing to pictures or names of meals on menus.

Food in Bangkok

Although, the Islands are very close, I would have to say Chiang Mai is my favorite place in Thailand, and it has the best food by far. Although, there were tourists, these tourists were very bohemian, (I saw tons of dread locks.) Chiang Mai has a very authentic vibe. There were tons of locals driving mopeds. The restaurants were so authentic that at one of them the owner through on apron and cooked our food barefoot in her kitchen. She also teaches Thai cooking classes.

This photo is by far my favorite photo I took while in Chiang Mai. It just reveals how authentic and beautiful Chiang Mai is. Look at the street food vendor grilling corn on the cob. I captured her smiling. Look at the local traffic in behind her. Mopeds speeding on by. Look at the beauty of the gold Buddhist temple in the back ground. This defines Thailand.  

Chiang Mai corn ladyThese photo belongs to me. Do not use or repost with out my permission.

Chiang Mai street food

Above is a photo of the night market in Chiang Mai. It is crowded and authentic. People selling art, food, etc.

Food in Chiang Mai

On the Islands, where we are staying, beach front, it is less authentic and more touristy so there are more bars and restaurants and less street food vendors.thailand island meat lady

Also surprisingly, our hotels have had really amazing breakfast. So I have been waking up and eating a pretty big breakfast everyday. This is way different from my eating habits at home. At home I am not a morning eater. Normally, I’ll have a hard boiled egg, latte, protein shake, possibly oatmeal, occasionally a greek yogurt, maybe a piece of fruit. I always have a latte every morning the caffeine helps jump start my metabolism. Here in Thailand I have only had coffee twice, and I have been here for almost 3 weeks.

Breakfast in Ko Samui, Thailand, resort The Blue Lagoonthailand islands breakfastBreakfast in Phuket, Thailand, resort The Malisa

Food on the Islands

The cool thing about Ko Samui is that there was a larger variety of different types of food. We went to The Larger, which was owned by a British guy or Aussie. We also went to an Italian restaurant which was owned by an Italian guy. There were restaurants like these where the owner loved Ko Samui so much that he eventually moved to the island and opened a restaurant.

So there you have it, that sums up what I ate on my three week vacation through Thailand. I am excited to say, that I also  brought home some Thai spices and curry pastes, so I can play in my kitchen and make some of my very own thai food.

I am also proud to say that the DC area has some pretty good Thai restaurants. I don’t think our restaurants are too Americanized.

Questions for You…

  1. Have you been to Thailand?
  2. What is your favorite Thai dish?
  3. Do you cook with Thai spices?

© 2014 sweatdaily

 

The Cool Impossible

I am in the Phuket airport waiting to head back to Bangkok. Unfortunately, my access to wifi has been almost nonexistent, so it has been really hard for me to blog, while I have been in Asia. I have so much to say, write, update you on.

But you probably want to hear something about running, since I am a runner and so are you.

And let me tell you…

I have been having some amazing beach runs during my three weeks in Thailand. I even inspired my non runner friend to do some short runs with me. I’m going to write a more detailed post about that later.

In the meantime, I am excited to share with you, The Cool Impossible, the new running book I have been reading while on my travels. I am obsessed! This book is a must read.

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You may have seen this book on a previous blog post I had written back in the summer. I started this book then, but because I was in the beginning of training for the Marine Corps Marathon, I took the author’s advice and stopped reading it until I had adequate time to complete the 5 month program.

The author, Eric Orton, is a running coach and natural barefoot running expert. He has experience with the Tarahumara (from Born to Run.) He also coached Christopher McDougall (author of Born to Run.) Helping McDougall run a successful ultra marathon. He helped McDougall transition into a natural barefoot stride. And with proper running form, curing his bad running habits and healing him from pain from numerous running injuries.

I would have to say I am very impressed with Eric Orton. The way he writes makes you feel like I am actually in Jackson and he is coaching me in person. I also feel like I can relate to him. A lot of the stuff he says in this book is stuff I already know. But I am definitely learning some new stuff too.

“We need more than endurance to run well for long distances; we need to be strong and fast. “

The quote above is from the book. it is promoting strength. Strength is what a good portion of this book is about. Being strong will benefit you in every way. I agree with this 100%. It is refreshing to have someone finally promote strength to prevent injury, instead of finding a new type of shoe, or product to sell you, claiming it is magic. When in the end it is cheaper and more efficient to make your body stronger and healthier. Trust me it is that easy.

For years every running plan and running magazine talked about only running, not strength training. Burt honestly, the truth is the more you strength train, the stronger you will become, the less injuries you will get. The stronger you become the further and faster you will be able to run. Trust me it is that simple.

I use to be that girl who only ran. But since switching to a natural barefoot running shoe with a low heel to toe drop, I have been weight lifting for about a year now. My form has significantly improved. And after only 8 weeks of weight lifting and 6 months on perfecting my running form , I began to not only see my body change to a more fit physique, but my race times significantly improved. I set a new PR in my half marathon, shedding off 9 minutes. And I set a new PR in my full marathon time, shedding off 11
minutes.

I am excited to finish this book, and start the 5 month program. I will blog about my experience along the way.

Although, my form has improved over the year since weight lifting, and switching to a natural barefoot shoe – it is not perfect. There is still room for improvement.

If you are in natural barefoot shoes and you land on your forefoot, take the time now to see the wear and tear at the bottom of your running shoes. Noticing where the wear and tear is located on the bottom of your shoe can tell you a lot about which muscles need to be stronger. Or which muscles need to actually start being used.

By the wear and tear at the bottom if my shoe, I know I need to strengthen my feet and my gluteus medius.

So when I get back to the US this will be the running program I will start. I am also excited about learning more about Heart Rate monitoring and Heart Rate Zones. This will be part of the program as well.

Along with this program, and because I have completed another round of the LiveFit trainer, I will be starting the Clutch Cut by Ashley Conrad. I have been doing Livefit for a while know and it’s time to switch things up a bit. Can’t wait!!!

I’ve missed my gym weightlifting sessions since I have been away. I have tried my best to run and stay as active as I can, but I still really miss my intense gym workouts.

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Above is a burpee challenge I did in Bangkok…

Future Workout Plan
for when I am back home

1) 5 month running program by coach Eric Orton from The Cool Impossible

2) The Clutch Cut by Ashley Conrad 3 week program, followed by the Clutch phase 1 and 2.

Both plans talk about nutrition. I will be following Ashley Conrad’s clean eating nutrition plan.

What running plans are you following? What weight lifting plans are you following? Has anyone read The Cool Impossible?

Bangkok is not a runner friendly city…

Thailand had been an unforgettable trip. So far I have spent 4 days in Bangkok and 4 days in Chiang Mia. Now I am island hopping. I am starting in Ko Samui.

I was hoping to get a run in while I was in Bangkok, but honestly it would have been impossible if I tried. The streets are covered with vendors. Most of them selling homemade street food. The sidewalks are way too narrow. Many of them have dips and curbs. So I would have been hopping all over the place. Also the streets have too much crazy traffic, and the side walks so crowded that when we walked we walked single file.

Another thing that worries me is that no one spoke English, so if I were to get lost I would have been totally screwed. Plus my phone wasn’t working. So no GPS or maps for me. I feel like this sounds like excuses but it is the truth. Bangkok is not a runner friendly city. I didn’t see one runner when I was there.

However, while I was in Bangkok we did tons of walking. And I did squeeze in one of the exercises that I wanted to from one of the Under Armour ambassador, I follow on Instagram. The first week of February was all about burpees.

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I will keep you update you on my runs and workouts while I am on the islands. Today was my first day squeezing a run in. And I plan to get many more in. Running on the beach is my favorite plus I got to take advantage of the warm temps while I can. If is still brutally cold back home.

Recipe: Asian Broccoli Soup with pickled Ginger and Black Sesame

The winter months are days full of desiring real comfort food. Its cold outside so one wants to eat a filling warm meal. It doesn’t help that farmer’s markets are scarce and the colorful produce that existed during the summer is now limited or in many cases nonexistent.

I still want to eat clean, organic, plant based, because everyone knows, “A summer body is made in the winter.”

So what is a girl to do during these cold gray winter months.

Crave soup.

Eat soup.

The variety of soups are endless. Soups are easy to make. You can make a huge pot for the week. You can freeze left over soup. Not all but many soups are an amazing way to eat clean, and still feel satisfied. They are warm, and to even make them hotter, smokey, spicy, try adding a pepper, such as chipotle in adobo sauce.

The soup that I am going to introduce to you today, is made with Asian influence. Because I am heading to Asia this week, I am all about the asian flavors.

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Broccoli Soup with pickled ginger and black sesame seeds.

Ingredients

1) Broccoli
2) Ginger
3) Ground Ginger
4) Soy sauce
5) Sea Salt
6) Sesame oil or toasted Sesame oil
7) Pickled Ginger
8) Black sesame seeds

Directions

1) Prep two small heads of broccoli by cleaning and cutting them into small pieces.

2) Place them in a pot of water with a chunk of natural ginger in it. Bring ginger water to a boil. Cool over high heat until broccoli is tender.

3) Once broccoli is tender, scoop out and discard ginger. Place broccoli into food processor or blender. Add two cups of the ginger infused cooking water.

4) Combine 2 tablespoons soy sauce with grounded ginger, and sesame oil. Cook in a small pan over heat. Once heated pour over broccoli in blender.

5) Blend all ingredients.

6) Once blended reheat over stove until desired temperature.

7) Serve in a bowl topped with pickled ginger and black sesame seeds.

8) Enjoy!

What are your favorite soups? How do you eat clean during the winter?

My Fitness and Nutrition goals for 2014!

2013 was an amazing year! It will be hard to beat. However, if there is a year to beat it 2014 is that year. A lot of big, exciting, special things are happening. Two of the biggest include…

  1. I will be traveling to Thailand with my Fiance!
  2. Later in the year, we will be getting married!

I am calling our trip to Thailand our premoon, since it is going to be an amazing adventure taking place before my fiance and I get married. Thailand has always been on the top of my list of places I desire to visit, and now that two of my best friends have moved to Asia, It seems much more doable.

Our trip is planned out according to where in Thailand we are going to be on which day, but from now until we leave, I will be reading up on Thailand as much as possible.

I have also found Pinterest and Instagram extremely helpful while planning this trip. Surprisingly, Pinterest and Instagram have become little tour books on theirc78f233e7abc2a0286ba0f215f5e42a2 own.¬†I have now started a Thailand pin board based on what I want to see while I am there. This is going to be an amazing adventure, and because I am a crazy runner girl, I am bringing my running shoes too. ¬†Honestly, I don’t know how much running I will be doing, but when I do go on a run, I will be sure to blog about it. I am not going to be too hard core, because vacation is about relaxing, plus I have been working out pretty hard in the gym lately, and it may be nice to have some time off. But one of the best things about being a runner, is that you can run anywhere in the world. So my newtons will be in my carry on.

Now that we are on the subject of running, it may be a good time to reveal to you my Future Race Line Up and RUNNING GOALS for 2014.

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As of now I am registered for three races.

  • The Four Courts Four miler, scheduled for March 15th. During Christmas I had won a free race entry for this race. It is a fun run I have never ran before so I am excited to run it.
  • The Cherry Blossom 10 miler, scheduled for April 6th. This race is the first race I ever ran, 6 years ago. It is also one of my favorite races. I was very lucky to get in considering it is a lottery.
  • The Parkway Classic 10 miler, scheduled for April 13th. This is a race I run every year. It is my favorite 10 miler in the area.

SO OBVIOUSLY I AM LOOKING TO PR IN THESE UPCOMING RACES. And, because of the extreme cold temperatures that we have experienced over the last week, I actually have been doing HIIT on the treadmill. I have been averaging a 7:30 min/mile but at some points running between a 6:00/ 6:30 min/mile. By doing sprints like this I am working my fast twitch muscles. I am planning on continuing to do different types of speed work at least 2x a week in order to improve my speed, so I can PR in these upcoming races.

I am not sure which other races I want to run yet. I definitely want to run a couple half marathons, and I am back and forth on whether I want to run a full this year. Full marathons are a huge time commitment for me, so we shall see.

RUNNING GOALS 

  • Run 2014 miles in 2014. Lets see if I can do it, or how close I can get.
  • Read The Cool Impossible. This is the next book following Born To Run. I started it, but put it down because of my marathon training. I am ready to really read it, and use it to improve my running.
  • Learn more about heart rate and how using a heart rate monitor can improve my running. I have been using a heart rate monitor while lifting heavy in the gym. I have found it really fascinating seeing how in some exercised my heart rate stays consistent and how in others it raises and lowers. I have a heart rate monitor for running, so I want to learn how to use it to improve my running.
  • Subscribe again to the magazine Runner’s World. Lately, I have been reading Runner’s World and I feel like it now caters to the beginner runner. However, although the information is stuff I already know, there is also a lot of great inspiring stories in it. So for motivational reasons I want to subscribe again. Plus I buy it every month on the news stand.

As you all know, last year I got really passionate about weight lifting. I think it is very important to do along side running. It makes me a stronger, faster, injury free runner.82ae592f4275b619c540ce05d348e388

WEIGHT LIFTING GOALS for 2014

  • Start and complete two rounds of the clutch transformation. Start and complete the clutch cut. This will be a total of 12 weeks of clutch. Start in March when I return from Thailand.
  • At one point this year I want to be able to do 5 unassisted pull ups. I can’t even do one at the moment.
  • I want to be able to do a handstand. I am always in awe of all the cool yoga poses I see people doing on What’s Beautiful, and on Instagram, and most of them are handstands. Handstands are so healthy for you, and they make you very strong.
  • I want to see some abs. Nothing too crazy. But some baby abs would be nice to see.

Because I want to see some abs, and everyone knows abs are made in the kitchen. So here are my Nutritional Goals for 2014.

NUTRITIONAL GOALS for 2014

  • Be more strict about eating veg.
  • Meal prep weekly.
  • Continue to cook more. Eat out less.
  • While doing clutch follow clutch diet and supplement plan.
  • Read all my cook books.
  • Continue to stock my kitchen with the tools I need.
  • Organize my recipes so they are easy to find when I need them. Maybe in a recipe box.
  • Subscribe to vegetarian magazines. This will help me stay on track and motivated to cook more.

*Make and inspiration board and change it often. This way I stay up to date!*

And saving the best for last, Getting Married!!

Best wishes from me to you for 2014!!

What are your 2014 goals? Where are you traveling? Which races are you running?

Articles you may like…

© 2014 sweatdaily

Tips on how to keep your New Year’s Resolution!

Happy New Year!4e777969cd7382b6a99a3809cca1c625

What is 2014 going to be like for you?

You can’t control everything that happens to you in 2014, but what you do have control over is which goals you choose to set and how you plan on reaching them.

Most people hate New Year’s Resolutions. Most people think they are pointless, and never set them. I guess, I’m not like most people, because I love them. I always set them, and I make a great effort to stick to them.

And although, I make a resolution for the year, I also always have other goals I am trying to reach. After reaching my current goals,  I then set new ones.

However, not everyone is constantly making goals, and for some, they dread it. Others set a New Year resolution and by February forget their resolution ever existed.

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So here are some fun tips to get you setting a New Year resolution and sticking to it.

  • Be specific, and well detailed.
  • Have a game plan.
  • Be inspired and find support.

The two most common resolutions are…

1) Diet and loose weight. 

If this is your new year resolution, the odds are you are going to fail. Why? Because there is no game plan. A couple years ago, my resolution was, “I’m going to eat one unique, exotic, interesting food a week.” This resolution being more specific¬†was totally doable. It¬†got me out of my rut of always throwing the same food into my grocery cart. It also got me exploring health food stores, such as MOM’s Organic Market and Whole Foods. I would literally grab one item I knew nothing about, and throw it into my cart. I would go home research it, learning how to prepare it, and what it went well with. This one small resolution changed my life. I began exploring new food options. I discovered a passion for cooking. ¬†I started meal prepping. And with out even realizing it at first, I began to eat healthier and loose body fat.

0019f04590beca7cf63eb89e770abeccSo this year, instead of focusing on dieting, and counting calories, try focusing on living a healthy lifestyle. Focus on making healthier food choices. This may not be as easy as it seems, because the sad truth is that many people are confused and simply do not know what is healthy. If you fall in this category it is not your fault. Advertisements play so many sneaky tricks on us by calling products fat free, low fat, diet, when the truth is these products are really overly processed, full of sugar and chemicals. Even fat free milk, which sounds healthy, is actually processed. They suck out the fat and replace it with chemicals and 12 grams of added sugar per cup. The average woman should only get an average of 25-30 grams of added sugar a day.

So start to educate yourself… This is important!

It’s time to…

  • Read labels and avoid chemicals.
  • Promise yourself that you will choose organic, cold-pressed, raw, unrefined, unprocessed foods.
  • Eliminate added sugars.
  • Meal prep.
  • Cook your own food.
  • Have fun by researching and trying new foods and recipes.
  • Become a foodie, and choose high quality foods.
  • Really make an effort to learn about exactly what you are putting in to your body.
  • Download apps, get the tools, you need to succeed.

This may be a time commitment and a financial investment, but it is worth it in the long run. You deserve this!

Once you have truly learned about selecting a healthy food choice, and your get on a regular routine of living a healthy lifestyle, it is then that you can take it up a notch. It is then that you can count macros and carb cycle.  There are a lot of apps that can help you learn a healthy food choice, and later log your food. My favorite is My Fitness Pal.

2) I’m going to work out more… is another common resolution.

If this is your New Year resolution be prepared to fail. Why? Again there is no game plan. Instead, choose a plan. There are tons of free weightlifting plans on bodybuilding.com.

Weight lifting

961f5fe107c5336873307876076622b7In 2013, I decided, along side of my running I was going to incorporate weight lifting, into the mix. I had been running everyday, but wanted to improve my speed, and prevent injury – so it was time to get strong. When training for a full or half marathon I always had been successful while following a disciplined training plan. Because of this, I knew I needed one when it came to weight lifting. That being said, I saw amazing results in the weight room because I followed the Livefit Trainer, by Jamie Eason.

Honestly, the Livefit trainer changed my life. I have never seen such amazing results in my body, and the best part is my running has significantly improved.

“Change your mind set. Stop focusing on getting skinny! Instead focus on getting strong. If you focus on getting strong, the fat will melt right off.”

f57e16d7b28f64b14239426e40d574f6One way I found success was to record everything. When you write down how heavy you are lifting, next time you lift heavier you will feel more accomplished, by setting a new PR. Also when you record everything, you will be amazed how much you are actually doing. One leg day, after counting all of my reps and sets, I discovered I did 180 squats that day. Pretty amazing!

Running 

22f9d787894089d24454f97454f7d2fcMaybe you don’t belong to a gym… maybe you would rather choose to run as your source of exercise. ¬†Well you are asking the right person, because I am a runner. Running is my thing.

Again you need a game plan and a detailed goal.

Start Racing…

I love racing, so this New Year I would suggest signing up for a race. By signing up for a race, you will have a specific date you must physically be ready to run by. In the summer, in the DC area, there is a 5K every friday in Crystal City. So if you are choosing to run shorter distances such as a 5K, consider signing up for several. Maybe your goal will to be to race once a month.

If you are choosing a longer distance, such as half marathon or full, allow at least 16 weeks for training. There are tons of online training plans. My favorite running plans are written by Hal Higdon. I have trained for all of my full marathons, by using his plans, and I found success.

Log your miles…

Another option is to set a milage goal, for example, maybe you want to run 20 miles a week, or 100 miles a month. (These are all very doable goals.) Maybe you want to do a 30 day consecutive running challenge, where you run at least a mile a day everyday for 30 days.

There are several online running logs, you can use to keep track of your miles.classic-log Because I have a Garmin, I use the Garmin Connect center. But if you do not have a Garmin, you can use a free log on runnersworld.com. Another option is Daily Mile. There are also many apps to record your miles, such as, Run Keeper or Map my Run.

¬†Stay Inspired beyond social media…

Although social media sites, such as Instagram, Tumblr and Facebook can be very helpful and inspiring. There are times when you find an inspiring article in a magazine that you want to tear out and keep. In this case, I find it very helpful to create a story board, or inspiration board/wall. This is simply a physical spot on a wall, or a cork board that you can pin inspiration and notes too. This helps you stay organized. Another option is to join Pinterest, the online option for a pin board.

Also if you keep a day planner, don’t forget to write down your daily workouts, and good eats.

To find support…

The people who see the best results in most cases have a workout partner, or a running buddy. Sometimes it is hard to find someone with the same schedule as you. (I have struggled with this.) ¬†So in order to find support there is a ton of online fitness community you can join. My favorite is What’s Beautiful by Under Armour. What’s beautiful is free, and by joining you are able to learn new things, be inspired by others, participate in challenges, and get never-ending support.

Instagram is another form of social media, that can make a huge difference in keeping you motivated.  People think Instagram is just a personal photo sharing app, but the truth is Instagram has much more to offer.

Instagram is an information source. You can search hashtags that lead you to, personal trainers, running coaches, small businesses, professional athletes, athletes trying to inspire, chefs, nutritionist, foodies, etc.

You can learn new yoga poses, new recipes, new workouts, new equipment, new gear, and so much more. You can follow people who inspire you. You can follow companies. The information and knowledge you can find, is at your fingertips. It comes quickly and is never-ending.  You can also hashtag your personal photos, which your followers and others  might like or comment on Рthis support alone may be just the motivation you need.

Another fun thing about Instagram is you can easily join a challenge. There are tons of challenges going on and all you need to do is use the challenge hash tag. There is also daily hash tags, such as #transfomationtuesday used on tuesday or #flexfriday used on friday.

If an online fitness community isn’t enough, try joining a Crossfit gym, yoga studio, running club/group, or local gym.

So there you have it.  These are my top tips on how to be successful when it comes to nutritional and fitness goals this new year.

Questions for you…

  1. What’s your New Year Resolution?
  2. What tips do you have to stick to a resolution?
  3. How do you stay inspired?

© 2014 sweatdaily

Articles you may be interested in.

  1. New Years Resolution 2013
  2. Food… doesn’t have to be fatty
  3. I’ve been drinking my sugar.¬†
  4. Livefit Trainer and Fitness apps
  5. Transformation Tuesday

The best Christmas present a Runner could ask for…

Tis’ the Season

This year’s holiday season was non stop. It actually was the busiest holiday season I have ever had at the salon. Busy is good, but it is also exhausting, and stressful.

Christmas Eve

So when I got to leave the salon early on Christmas Eve, I decided to hit the trail hard. Snow flurries were among the wind blowing, but it was sunny, and I made it just in time to get a good run in before the sunset. 1511366_10101518148575136_1184233541_nI love running at this time. You see a ton of wild life on the water, and this time the sky turned pink- so bright it matched my jacket.

My family never does anything on Christmas Eve, so we ended up all at my mom’s and ordered Chinese. Honestly, there are no good Chinese Restaurants in the DC area, so we ended up ordering from Charlie Changs. I haven’t eaten Chinese in over a year. It was a true test to my taste buds. Once you start eating clean and eliminating added sugar your taste buds totally change. This food tasted way to sweet,and processed- like a TV dinner. YUCK! If you are from DC and know of a good Chinese Restaurant clue me in please…

My Tree

This year was the first time that I cut down my own tree. I went once with my family as a kid, but my fiance and his parents have been cutting down their tree for the last couple years so this year I joined them.

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I asked the farm if they had Douglas Firs. They didn’t, but they had other types of Firs, that looked similar. It was a fun outing, and really awesome having a fresh cut tree.
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Because work was so busy, it took a whole week to decorate. But it finally got done. It is so relaxing to sit next to a beautiful lit tree. The tree part is one of my favorite things about the Christmas holiday. I also love Christmas Cards!

The Best present a Runner could ask for…

Of course a lot of the stress about this Holiday is finding the perfect gift. And for some reason my family says I am the hardest one to shop for. Honestly, I think the receiving presents thing is getting a little bit old. It’s much more fun when you have children around who get excited about Santa. However, because we have no children in my family, it is just adults exchanging presents, which feels a little weird since we are all lucky that we are able to buy our own things. This is why it becomes even harder, to find that fun creative thoughtful gift. I made my Runner’s Wish List, and never thought or heard of this wonderful idea my little sister came up with…

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This is a jar of pink, blue,  and green pieces of paper rolled up into scrolls.

PINK

When I am in need of a new song to add to my running mix on my iPod I choose pink, unravel it and there will be a song title and artist. This is perfect because I am always desperate for new music.

BLUE

If I am lacking motivation, I choose blue. I unravel blue and a motivational quote will be there to help me get my booty moving.

GREEN

If I am sore from miles and miles of running, I can choose a green scroll which will teach a yoga pose or stretch. The jar also had socks, and headbands in there as well.

This is a home made thoughtful gift and I love it! So creative. My favorite part is the phrase on the front, “Its a runners world, because 26.2 is my lucky number.”¬†This gift is definitely making my Runner’s Wish List next year.¬†

Christmas Morning Running…

So after breakfast and gift exchange, my sister and I went for a quick 5K loop. It was a great neighborhood run- towards the end of the run, I realized how peaceful it was outside. It was also nice to check out all the houses decorated for Christmas.

Another Exciting Gift…

Pacers is the local running store in the DC area. They posted on facebook a status wanting to hear what kind of milage everyone was running for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Whoever had the best mileage won a race entry for February or March. Guess what… I WON!!

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I am so excited! I never win anything! Can’t wait to run a St. Patty’s day race. Thank You, Pacers!!!

Now that Christmas is over, I am feeling much more relaxed, and very excited about the New Year! New Years is my favorite! I can’t wait to share with you my highlights for 2013, and my new goals for 2014. ¬†So stay tuned…

Questions for You…

  1. Are the holidays busy, stressful, and overwhelming for you?
  2. What cool running presents did you receive?
  3. Have you ever won a free race entry?
  4. Do you enjoy New Years?

© 2013 sweatdaily

I want to say a special thank you to my sister, mom, and of course my fiance, his parents, and stepsister who gave me gifts this year.  All of them were amazing and I have been so spoiled. Thank you!

 

It’s Crunch time! Christmas Wish List for Runners!

It’s CRUNCH time! You have a little less then one week until your shopping deadline, December 25th is here. If you have a runner on your buying list. I am going to help you, by revealing my Runner’s Christmas Wish list.

There are definitely some awesome universal running gifts but there are some that are particular to certain types of runners. Don’t worry I’ll walk you through it.

Let’s start with great ideas for stocking stuffers. Sometimes it is the little things that make all the difference, especially during a long run.

Here are my top favorites…

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These little tablets help your runner refuel. They dissolve into your runner’s water with in minutes giving instant energy. Once dissolved it becomes your runner’s source of hydration, giving them everything they need from sodium to electrolytes. The brand also has an ALL DAY option with a¬†lower sodium level,¬†for those runners who want to sip on nuun all day. ¬†Nuun comes in a wide range of flavors to satisfy every runner’s taste buds, for only $6.50 a pack. This product is for all types of runners and endurance athletes.

Sports Beans by Jelly Belly

ea2c1629-afec-4113-a6dc-842499df1040These beans are magical beans, at least to a runner that is. They are different from nuun because they don’t dissolve in water. Instead you chew about four beans every hour, washing them down with a gulp of water. And like magic, instantly, your runner feels energized. They refuel and replace everything your runner looses while sweating during a long run.

These beans have been with me during every training run and every race from 10 miler to marathon. These beans come in a variety of different flavors. They also come with ¬†the option of caffeine or with out. I normally use the ones with out caffeine, because caffeine gives me the jitters while I run and messes up my stomach. ¬†So keep this in mind- it is important to ask your runner if they perform well on caffeine or not. These sports beans are only $1.25 a pack, that’s a pretty good price for magic.

Honey Stingers Waffles

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Imagine this… Cyclists in Belgium training for the Tour de France, eating waffles as fuel on long training rides. This is how Honey Stingers Waffles were born. These waffles come in strawberry, vanilla, honey, lemon, and chocolate and the best part is they are Organic. My favorite is the honey flavor. They come in handy when you are crunched for time and need a quick bite before a run. I also like to keep them in my camelbak for a snack while on a long training run. The brand Honey Stingers also has gels and other refuel items. These waffles are $1.39 per waffle.

Body Glide

DownloadedFile-3This may not seam like a very exciting Christmas present, but to a runner it is. Body glide is a protecting layer that can be put on any part of the skin. This helps prevent chafing and blisters. I am that runner who always misplaces her body glide. So I am always buying new ones. I don’t go on a long run or to a race with out it, and honestly can’t get enough of it.¬†Body glide has saved me from a lot of stinging, bleeding, and painful miles. It comes in a small travel size and a regular size. Depending on sized Body glide is $6.00-$10.00. This is for any runner who experience chafing and blisters, but mainly for the long distance runner.

Bondi band

401849_10101091606728416_1103647335_n-1I first discovered bondi bands at a race expo and I fell in love. They are the ultimate running accessory. It keeps your hair out of your face, stays put, and absorbs sweat. They also are very personable, coming in different colors with different fun phrases written on them. $8.00 a band, for all types of runners, male or female.

iTunes Gift Card

unnamedMaybe your runner is a sprinter who needs some fast pace music to get their feet speedy… Maybe your runner is an ultra marathoner who spends hours chugging long miles on the trail. Which ever it may be, all runners need some new tunes to keep them motivated and help them push through that last part of their training.

Now for your presents under the tree…

Garmin Forerunner

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The Garming Forerunner is the heart rate, GPS, watch which takes your running to the next level. Use this watch as a tool to understand your heart rate and record your pace, distance, and cadence for all training runs and races. There is a wide variety of different Garmin Forerunners, to meet the needs of all the different types of runners out there. There is ¬†even the forerunner 310 that is for the triathlete and can record under water. ¬†Which ever Garmin you choose, know this… Garmin is the leader in the running community for GPS and Heart Rate. These watches range from $129.00 – $399.99.

Newton

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Newton running is a natural barefoot running shoe that helps you mimic your stride as if you were barefoot. They are light weight, have a low heel to toe drop, but because of their unique lugs they are able to absorb shock.

I have been running in these shoes for over 18 months and ran my fall marathon in them. Their motto is Hello Better and it is so true.  My running form has significantly improved, I am running faster and better. These shoes range from $119.00- $175.00.

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There are a lot of different ways to stay hydrated. Some runners prefer a running belt. Others prefer a vest that holds two water bottles one on either front side. I however use a camelbak.

When running on trails, or through the city it is impossible to rely on water fountains. I always bring my camelbak for runs 10 miles or longer. My camelbak holds 2 liters of water and has additional pockets for all my other belongings. This is ideal for marathon runners, or anyone running 10 miles or more. Camelbaks range from $50.00 – $150.00, depending on the size and model of the camelbak you choose.

Injinji 

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A runner will appreciate a high performance sock. It sounds weird, but socks do make a huge difference. I tend to get really bad blisters. But these socks are wicking and sweat absorbing. And although they may look weird, they will save your runner from blisters. These run around $12.00 and they are for all runners, even those wearing the Vibram Five Fingers.

Runner’s World Magazine SubscriptionRunners-World-South-Africa-December-2013

I have been reading this magazine every month for the last 7 years. As a runner, Runner’s World is your source of information. It is for all types of runners, from the rookie to the veteran. It touches bases on all types of running from 5K to ultra marathons, revealing the most current gear from shoes to hydration packs. It has inspiring stories, tips for racing, exercises and nutrition advice. It also has a race calender to keep you updated on popular races.¬†¬†If your runner does not have this magazine, they need it. Subscribe for $19.99.

Other good reads for your Runner…

Eat and Run by Scott Jurekscotts_book_big

This book is by far my favorite book. It is written by ultra marathon Scott Jurek. The book tells the story of his life as an ultra marathoner, who eats a plant based diet. However, it gets a lot deeper then running, when he talks about his friends and family. My favorite part is that this book also has pages of great recipes.

Born to Run by Christopher Mcdougall born2run_coverpb

This book has been out for a couple years now . It is a national best seller, so odds are that your runner may have already gotten their hands on it. However, if not this is a must read.

This book is about the epic adventure Christopher Mcdougall goes on to answer the simple question of why his foot hurts when he runs. He discovers that what we thought we knew about running was all wrong. We are born to run, barefoot. Read this book and your will not only be inspired, but all your questions about running will be answered.

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The Cool Impossible by Eric Orton and Christopher Mcdougall

If your runner has already read, Born to Run, then The Cool Impossible is the next book to read. This book will become your running coach. Teaching you how to strengthen weak areas, so you can have proper running form, and transition safely into a barefoot runner.

 

 

So there is my list of the best running gifts. However before you buy anything…

Make sure you are a Kind Runner! Check out kindrunner.com.

“The reason we race isn’t so much to beat each other… But to be with each other.” ~ Christopher Mcdougall

I wish you the best this Holiday Season, and although, there is tons of pressure to give the best presents, in the end it is not that important. Always remember the true meaning of the Holidays is to be with each other.

© 2013 sweatdaily

New workout challenge #29daysofIWill

Lately, I have been posting a daily work out photo on Instagram and Facebook. Because of these daily work out photos, I have gotten a lot of questions and comments from curious followers wondering what this new challenge is.

Let me start out by saying I am not an Under Armour ambassador or work for Under Armour in any way. I am simply an athlete who loves Under Armour and is a part of the Under Armour fitness community, What’s Beautiful. Along with the motivation and support this community gives me, there is also a new challenge called 29 Days of I Will. This is how it works…

Set up a profile page on What’s Beautiful. Every day for 29 days one of the Under Armour ambassadors will announce a new workout challenge that you will complete. You can find this workout video and/or photo on What’s Beautiful, but also on Instagram. You will then take a photo or video of yourself completing the workout challenge. Post this photo/video on Instagram using #29daysofiwill. Also post it on your Whats Beautiful profile. To see other athletes completing the challenges too you can search #29daysofiwill.

I have been doing these workout challenges in addition to my other workout routine. Some days I simply can’t fit it in at the same time of my other workout routine so it forces me to do night workouts. What I love most about these challenges is that they get me out of my comfort zone and get me to try new things that I would have never considered trying.

Day 1

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Day 2

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Day 3
Today was all about suicides. I haven’t done suicides since I was on the tennis team in high school. I remember hating them. But surprisingly this time I found them really fun. I did 3 tennis courts worth. And plan on hitting the tennis courts more often.

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Day 4
Today was a pool workout. 5 50 meter laps. After each 50 meters do 10 dips and 10 push ups adding 10 more reps after each lap. Example lap 3 would have you do 30 dips and 30 push ups. I didn’t have a pool so I substituted laps in the pool with laps around the track. I went to the local high school’s track and surprisingly it was really busy. I was happy about this because I love being surrounded by other runners. It was definitely a different vibe from the trail, but it was a good vibe. There was also a local running club there too doing track work outs. I have always wanted to hit up the track but just never got to it. I am thankful I finally got there and look forward to doing more track work outs. I was also lucky it was a warm night in December and I was able to wear shorts.

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Day 5
Today I learned a new Yoga Pose called Fallen Triangle! I love this pose.

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Day 6
Was to sign up for something you have never tried before. I am still deciding on what this will be so I skipped this day. I promise I will get back to this.

Day 7
Today was a circuit workout.

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So this is what I have done so far. Today is day 13 for this challenge. So as you can see I have some major catching up to do. Hopefully, I’ll get caught up soon. The one negative thing about this challenge is that I am a morning runner and do most of my workouts in the morning before work. Unfortunately, the ambassadors post the daily challenge mid morning. This does not work for me because I like to plan my work outs the night before. Other than that it is fun to learn new yoga poses and workouts to include with my runs and current weight lifting plan. It’s not to late. Check out this challenge!!

Do you use social media to learn new workouts and find inspiration and support?

Race Report: Marine Corps Marathon

“Whatever song you have in your head had better be a good one. Whatever story you are telling yourself had better be a story about going on. There is no room for negativity. The reason most people quit has nothing to do with their body.” ~ Scott Jurek¬†

Below is the song I had in my head, the story I told myself. Below is my experience running my 3rd Marine Corps Marathon, revealing everything to you, including my mental strategies.

NIGHT BEFORE

Around 10:00 pm, I read the Marine Corps Marathon Facebook page status. It said something along the lines of, “It’s bed time! Sleep Tight runners.” I laughed at the idea – no one sleeps well the night before a big race.

I curled up in bed, everything prepared exactly the way I wanted it, totally ready for race day. My alarm was set for 6:00 am, but I knew I would wake up before it went off. I wasn’t nervous, I was more excited and anxious. It was definitely bitter sweet, this marked the end of my marathon training, and when I woke in the morning, it would be the beginning of my race day.

MORNING OF 

As I predicted, I tossed and turned through out the night, checking the clock. At 5:50 am, the text messages started. Friends and family wishing me good luck for my big race. I turned off my phone alarm and headed to the bathroom where all my race stuff was laid out. After getting dressed in my race clothes, body gliding everything including the bottom of my feet (my problem area), I grabbed my bag, my Garmin, my iPod, my peanut butter sandwich, and a bottle of water, then I was off to my mom’s.

I arrived at her place, at 6:30 am, gave her a map of the course and a game plan of where to meet me through out the race. My little sister, even rolled out of bed to give me a quick pep talk, it was super helpful. I was already starting to feel pumped.

THE METRO 

Mom gave me a ride to the metro. And when entering the metro, I started to see all the other runners, what a relief, how exciting. MCM METRO¬†I got off at the pentagon, and just followed the crowd to the start. The sun started to rise, and the Marines were there, (and they were cuter than ever) welcoming us, and hollering, “Good morning, runners!!”

Because of Boston, security was tight, everyone had to have a clear see through bag, but the Marines kept it organized and checked bags quickly.

At this point it was 7:20 am, so I stripped down- peeling off my sweats. I checked my bag with the UPS trucks, stuffing everything except for my phone and sports beans into my bag and then handed it over. I was wearing shorts and a tank top and people began to comment, “Wow, looking at you makes me cold.” I answered back,” I am more concerned about overheating and being hot.” I had thought about wearing an old shirt, and old socks on my hands as gloves, but honestly, I didn’t think it was that cold out there, and I knew it would warm up quick. I saw people wearing long pants, hats, ear muffs – I thought they were crazy. It’s not January guys.

MY CORRAL

So I headed down to my corral. The last two times I ran this race I stood with the 4:30 group. This time I wanted to try to hang with the 4:15 group as long as I could. This race has 30,000 runners, so it is going to be packed, crowded. My sister thought it would be best to start with the 4:30 group so that way I wouldn’t go out too fast in the beginning. I however, was planning on running most of the race at a consistent pace that would get me to the finish line, with a new PR, which meant anything faster than a 4:30, but I was hoping for around a 4:15, and because of how crowded it can get I didn’t want to get stuck running to slow in the beginning. So my advice to you, when running in a crowded race, and you are debating between corrals, start with the faster one.

Once in my corral, I spotted the 4:15 pacer, she had a sign with red and white balloons. MCM 415¬†My plan was to run my own race, but keep my eye on her through out the race. I had my Garmin, and I had a pace bracelet (which I highly recommend), both of these would help me finish strong, with a new PR, so if I lost sight of the pacer, it wouldn’t ruin my race, plus she was passing the start line before I would be.

THE START

In the past, right before the gun went off, they would announce that, “The Marines are watching over you, on the ground and in the sky,” then they would fly military jets over our heads. This year they had people sky dive in to the corse. Everyone had their phones out trying to video tape and get photos, trying to capture the moment. It was really cool,creating an excited energy. Everyone was jumping up and down, and ready to cross over that start line. The gun went off at 7:55. At 8:10, I was across the start line, my Garmin was ticking.

FIRST 2 MILES

Down 110, up through Rosslyn, up the Lee Highway hill… Then on the right hand side, around mile 2, outside my sister’s apartment, I spotted my mom, Erik, Erik’s mom, my sister, and her friend Erin. They cheered loud, I cheered back, waving and continued on my way. They had really funny signs, that got them tons of attention.

MCM EM AND SIGNS

MILES 3-9

Down Spout run, up to the Key bridge, over the bridge, down M street, down Wisconsin. George Town was fun and full of spectators. Then to the waterfront, up Rock Creek park, I ran.

Running up Rock Creek was a new part of the course. It was fun to run up, and then see the faster runners running down. The loop around was a little congested, though, and then it took a little while for people ahead of me to pick up their pace. I guess people don’t run fast down, the down hills, but I like to, that is part of my strategy – as long as you don’t pound the pavement and you stay light on your feet, use momentum and physics to fly down the down hills.

MILE 10-12

Before I knew it I was at mile 10. This marathon was flying by. I checked my watch, I started to get concerned maybe I was running too fast. But I was right on time.

My family was suppose to meet me at mile 11, but around 10.5 I saw my sister sprinting next to me. What the heck… She screamed at me, that I had missed them and that instead of being at mile 11 they were at 10. She asked me if I had been receiving her text messages. I ended up moving my cell phone from my back pocket to my sports bra, so I would be able to read and respond to her text messages. Haha, I can’t believe I was texting and running – too funny.

HALF WAY DONE – Mile 13.1

The next mile marker my sister would be at was mile 16. She would text me when she got to her exact location. Next, significant mile marker I was passing was 13.1. I couldn’t believe I was already at the half way point. And while I was there, down in Hains Point, I realized I was running right behind the 4:15 pacer, balloons and sign. I turned off my music to listen to her pep talk.

THE PEP TALK

“We are not going to think that we still have a half marathon to run, but instead we are going to break the rest of this race up in pieces.” Perfect I thought, that was one of my original game plans. She continued,”First we are going to think about getting through these next two miles and making it to mile 15. Once we are at mile 15, we will be out of Hains Point, which means we will be out of this stupid park.” I couldn’t help but laugh, because it was so true, no one running the Marine Corps Marathon, likes running Haines Point. “Once we are at mile 15, we will be running on the National Mall. At mile 15, we will think about getting through the next 2 miles and making it to mile 17. This mile is a significant meaningful mile in a marathon because it takes us into signal digits.” Perfect that was another mental strategy I had been practicing. Then she told us, “From 17 we will run the next three miles and make it to mile 20, then we will beat the bridge and head out of DC and into Crystal City.” She told us she would stop talking now, and give us another pep talk on the bridge. Some guy who was totally out of breath desperately said, “Just get us there!” Haha this pacer has a lot of people depending on her. I loved her pep talk, it definitely motivated me, but I didn’t desperately need her to get me to the finish line. Her pep talk was helpful and got me even more mentally focused, but I still wanted to stick to my game plan, and watching my Garmin, running my own race.

MILE 15 

I then felt a vibration, and read a text from my sports bra. Em was waiting for me at mile 16 right passed the water station. I was at mile 15, I had easily made it out of the oh so boring Hains Point. I was running towards mile 16.

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MILE 16

Just like she said, I spotted Em right passed the water station at mile 16. Erin snapped a photo of the two of us.

MCM MILE 16

They were impressed with my timing, and told me that they would meet me in Crystal City next to the Cosi. So off I went.

MILE 17

I had made it to mile 17, and thought, single digits, single digits, 9 more to go. I was feeling great!

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MILE 18-20

I kept running, checking my pace bracelet, checking my Garmin, jamming out to my iPod. Then I realized I was leaving the National Mall, and approaching the 14th street bridge. I had made it to mile 20.

MCM BRIDGE

BEAT THE BRIDGE

In my previous Marine Corps Marathon, a Marine stands at mile 20, the start of the bridge, and he yells, “Mile 20, beat the bridge.” This year the Marines were there but they didn’t say anything. I was a little disappointed, but I kept my head focused. The bridge is almost 2 miles long. It can be super sunny and hot, or really windy and cold. This time around it was sunny and hot. This is also the spot where there are normally no spectators. It is just too tricky for spectators to get on the bridge. Ironically though, there were more this year, than the previous times I have run it. But because there aren’t that many spectators, this is the spot that a lot of runners, begin to walk, or stretch.

HITTING THE WALL

They stretch and walk, because they just ran 20 miles and no one is up there to see them walk. This is the spot that runners “Hit the wall.” I on the other hand was not hitting the wall, I was determined to beat the bridge. I stayed focused and promised myself I would not walk. I just wanted to run the bridge and get to the next water station. Plus I had just passed mile 21, only 5 more to go…

MILE 21

Mile 21 is a significant mile for me, because my longest run in training is a 21 mile run. (This year it might have been 22) During my weekly marathon training, I do a 5 mile easy run. When I hit mile 21 in my marathon, I told myself, “Only 5 mile to go, my five mile easy run.”

MILE 22

Finally, I got off the bridge. I was out of DC and in VA. At mile 22, I decided to take some sports beans and walk the water station. But I didn’t hang there too long, I started running again, and told myself that I need to get to Cosi, to find Em. I kept my eyes open for other people I recognized, but I didn’t see anyone.

MILE 23

Em was right where she said she would be, she is really good at spotting me. She jumped in just as we had planned. She was going to run the last 3.2 miles with me. She was going to be my Dusty. I was excited to have a buddy pace me to the finish line, especially since mile 23 was when I started to feel tired, and blistery on my left foot.

Lululemon was also cheering in Crystal City.  Along with some really funny signs, their energy made me get a second wind.

MCM COOL SIGN

As we ran, through Crystal City Em, told me that mom, Erik, and Erik’s mom were standing out front of Legal Seafood. They had changed the course from the previous years, and instead of looping all around Crystal Drive, we ran Crystal Drive and then turned up 23rd, passed Legal Seafood. I didn’t look at the corse map too closely, so this was a surprise to me, but it made more since and I liked it better.

Once I saw my family, I waved to them as they took my picture, and they screamed, “See ya at the Finish line.”

The finish line would be my last and final stop. I grabbed one last water cup at the final station, popped some sports beans, and told Em, “Let’s get this bad boy done.” She ran a little ahead of me, but I was totally fine with chasing her, it made me try to keep up my pace, blisters and all.

MILE 24

At mile 24, I though only 2 more miles. I will be done with my 3rd Marine Corps Marathon in less then 20 minutes. Although that seemed so short, at the same time the finish line seemed so far.

ONE MOE MILE

But just like in my previous two MCM, I saw the road sign that said, Memorial Bridge Exit. “Just get to that sign,” I thought. Then I was there. The next road sign I read said, Iwo Jima Memorial. “Just get to that road sign,” I thought. Then I was there. I made a left and saw the hill. Em wanted me to sprint up the hill as fast as I could. I had run this hill thousands of times before, because it is a part of one of my regular weekly running routes. I was familiar with this hill and new the finish line was right after it. So I ran as fast as I could up the Iwo Jima hill. And then, to the right of the hill, there it was the Finish line.

MCM race times

I had crossed over the finish line, finishing my 3rd Marine Corps Marathon, 11 minutes faster then my previous. My official time was 4:19:26. I had finished, I had set a new PR, and couldn’t have been happier!

THE FINISH – 26.2

Marines were there to greet us at the finish line. I was lucky to get a very cute one to put my marathon finisher medal around my neck. After, I walked around the finisher’s area, collecting all my goodies, I headed to brunch with my family. I sucked down two Blood Mary’s and ate donuts, at Lyon Hall. It was the perfect post race meal.

MCM HOT MARINE

MCM Finisher medal

MCM me

“One of the things I appreciate about running was how it strengthened and deepened friendships.” ~ Scott Jurek

I signed up for this race with L, but right when marathon training started she found out that she had a baby on the way. So I ended up training for this race totally by myself. This wasn’t the first time I had trained for a marathon totally alone, my last MCM I ran it solo as well. People have asked me, “Who did you run your marathon with?” ¬†I simply answered, “No one I can personally name off the top of my head. But I wasn’t bored or lonely. I ran with ¬†30,000 other runners, several spectators, the Military, everyone who read my blog, all of my family and friends who showed their support and love.”

So… Thank you, Thank you, Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

“In some ways, an ultra isn’t even as hard as a marathon.” ~ Scott Jurek¬†

© 2013 sweatdaily

* I have purchased all of my race photos from marathonfoto.com. I have not received my downloads and that is why I have the proof photos up. When the professional photos come, I will post those.

The rain finally stopped, so I ran 13 miles…

We have had rain everyday this week.

On Friday, it was a complete wash out. I normally love running in the rain, but this was not the type of rain to go play in. This was strong winds, soaking heavy rain drops, and flood warning type of rain. So I skipped my run, and hit the gym pretty hard.

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The goal is to keep as much muscle as I can during this marathon training season. Women are normally fearful they will bulk up, but the truth is ladies, it is very hard for women to gain muscle and keep it. Especially when you run long distance. When running long distance, I am talking about marathon and ultra marathon, at certain points during your run, your body is forced to use your muscle as fuel, for energy. During this marathon training season, it has been impossible for me to gain muscle in my upper body at all, and I have lost a little bit, but mostly maintained, my previous gains.

As for my marathon training, today the rain finally stopped… so I went out and ran 13 plus miles. I now am very confident that I am where I need to be in my training. I know this because 13 miles feels as easy as 5. (I hope I don’t jinks myself for writing that last sentence.) But it is true. Today, I even included some serious hills, even one that I will run on race day – everything felt easy, everything felt good. The only downfall is that I am experiencing some blisters. I also am thankful that it was overcast and cooler. Weather really affects me, and plays a huge role how my run ends up being.

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This week coming up…

I’m going to continue weight lifting including circuit training and active rest periods in the mix. ¬†I am also going to be doing shorter runs, because I am tapering. I want to continue running hills though. Because just like circuit training and active rest periods, hills build endurance and speed. If I have time, I may also sneak in some HIIT on the treadmill.

Nutrition wise, I need to meal prep, meal prep, meal prep. Clean eating, organic plant based meals is key!

I also want to say, a big CONGRATS to all those who ran the Baltimore Half Marathon or Full Marathon today.

Also Good Luck¬†to all of those who are running the Chicago Marathon tomorrow! Above photos are motivation for you!! You’ll do great!! xx

© 2013 sweatdaily

Marathon Training Update: Walk breaks during long runs… Beneficial or Not?

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Yesterday, I did my 20 miler which I ended short at 18 miles.

My mental strategy was to break this 20 miler into 4 five milers. I was going to sip water every 2 miles, and take water and sports beans every 5 miles.

This is how it all went down…

I stuck with the plan and took my first sips of water at mile 2. At mile 5, I was feeling so good I skipped the water and beans until mile 6. At mile 9, I was still feeling good, but came to the end of the trail so had to turn around.

Mile 10 felt good…

Mile 11 felt good…

Mile 12 felt good…

Hitting the Wall

At mile 13, I mentally lost it… I felt really dehydrated. My mouth was sooo dry. I didn’t put ice in my camel back so my water went warm. No matter how many sips of water I took, my mouth still¬†stayed dry. My stomach also started to feel bad, which is another sign of dehydration.

Walking during Marathon Training

I remember reading in my training plan, that it is okay to walk if you need to, and sometimes walking is beneficial. This is training, practice for the real deal. It is about getting the miles in. So I decided to walk a little to see if that would help. I have decided that walking is not a good idea for me because once I started walking it was hard to start running again. I really needed that second wind. I really needed that runner’s high, that you only get from keeping a consistent running rhythm. But walking took away the chance to be consistent, get a second wind, and runner’s high.

So now I know that walking doesn’t work for me… No walk breaks during the marathon unless I’m at a water station. By walking I also realized that physically, my lung capacity is good, but what felt tired were my feet. I find that very interesting!!! Maybe my Newton shoes work great for me at the half marathon distance, but I need something more for the full marathon distance. However, because I have been training in them all this time, I’m not going to switch now. I mainly have a few blisters on my left foot. I’ve also noticed my recovery time in between long runs is longer.

I am not the type to get disappointed when a long run goes bad. Bad long runs are great leaning experiences. And I am excited I have another 18 miler under my belt.

What I have Learned

1) Eat before I hit the trail… Something I forgot to mention was that I didn’t eat much before going out there. This caused lack of energy and stomach pain. I usually eat a bagel with peanut butter. A good combo of carbs and protein normally always works well. What doesn’t work well, is any type of Cliff bar or energy bars, these have too much fiber which causes really bad stomach problems.

2) I didn’t refuel properly. Water was warm, not enough sports beans consumed. This caused dehydration, which caused dry mouth and stomach pain.

3) Started walking and couldn’t comfortably start running again. This made me loose my running rhythm and I never got my second wind, never got my runner’s high in my second half of my long run. I hit the wall and could not recover.

4) I love my Newton shoes but maybe they are best for half marathons and not full marathons. My feet at hurting after 15 miles and my recovery time has become longer. However, my feet hurting is mainly blisters on my lift foot, which is minor, so I still am planning on continuing my training in them and they will be my marathon race shoes too.

5) Bad music. I desperately need to find some better songs for my running play list. My music is really old, and it bores me. I need music when training by totally solo. My music saves me, and helps me push through during those last miles.

Game Plan

I have 4-5 more weeks to prepare for MCM. I am going to really focus these last few weeks. This is what I need to do…

  • I need to make sure I fit in all of my weekly runs. Shorter runs are just as important then long runs. Running shorter faster runs feel amazing. I ran a really speedy 4 miler tonight. It felt amazing.
  • I need to squeeze in those weight lifting sessions. The stronger I am, the better I run.
  • I need to make sure I am eating properly in order to refuel and have the energy I need. I need to meal prep so I have food on hand, and I don’t resort to eating unhealthy, because I am desperate.
  • I need to drink more water. Hydration is key.

Hopefully, practice makes perfect…

Questions for You…

  1. Anyone have any other marathon training tips?
  2. Do you think walking during long runs is beneficial? It didn’t work for me… does it work for you?
  3. What is on your running playlist?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

The Proposal

It is saturday morning, August 24th, 2013, Erik and I are on a flight to our traditional end of the summer beach trip. The pilot jokingly chuckles in a Boston accent, that in 20 minutes we will be approaching our final destination, landing in the “Harba of Martha’s Vineyad.”

This is the first time that Erik and I had the opportunity to fly directly from Washington, DC to Martha’s Vineyard. Unlike our normal 5 hour trek, this was such an easy 90 minute flight.

Erik’s parents are sitting there patiently waiting in the small airport’s quart yard waiting for us to arrive. From Saturday to Tuesday morning we spend our Martha’s Vineyard vacation with them, but then on Tuesday they leave for Florida on business. They will be back Friday afternoon, and we head home Friday night. This is perfect timing, allowing Erik and I to finally experience the Island just the two of us.

We end up being blessed with some amazing beach days. The photos speak better than words.

On Thursday, we wake up to the typical New England overcast sky. The air cool and crisp Рit feels like fall. There is a breeze Рas if a storm was coming, but it never pours. Erik and I decide to go shopping in Edgar Town and walk around the harbor.

Later that day, we decide to head to Menemsha and Gay Head…

Menemsha is a beautiful beach that is known for its spectacular sunsets. Many photographers come to take photos. Others come for the view and a seafood picnic. It is easy to get seafood here because fishing boats park near the harbor, with fresh sea food. They have kitchen shacks where they will steam you a fresh lobster right from their boat. Many times there are pots of clam chowder and lobster bisque simmering.

Because the sky is smothered with gray clouds, seeing a sunset would be impossible, so last minute, Erik change our plan, and we start to head to Gay Head instead.

Gay Head is a beach known for it’s spectacular clay cliffs. There are cute shops on the top of the cliff. ¬†Previous years, I have been in the shops and on the top of the cliff looking down on the beach – but never walked the beach.

So Erik and I decided to head on down…

Of corse I am taking tons of pictures along the way. We follow the trail down to the beach.

The beach is as spectacular as everyone claims it to be. Waves crash wildly along the coast. The cliffs are made from red clay. They stand tall but unstable as heavy rocks fall from them. The sand feels like a clay facial mask for your feet.

In Martha’s Vineyard, it is rare to find your typical sea shell, instead the beaches are covered with sea glass and unique rocks. Many stores sell rocks with inspiring words on them, some with art painted on them. It is not uncommon for islanders to collect these rocks. So as we walk the beach, we are looking closely for unique rocks especially ones with halo rings around them.

Damn then, my phone dies… I guess I was taking too many photos.

I ask to barrow Erik’s phone so I can take one last photo of a wanna-be sand castle made from rocks. (You can see it in the last photo above – I thought it looked cool.)

All of a sudden, I hear Erik calling my name.

“Meggie… come over here.”

He starts crouching down.

I am really clueless of what is going on… maybe he found a cool rock, I thought.

“I have a question to ask you…”

He pulls out a red box that was hidden in his hands.

“Will you marry me?” he asks very quietly, as he opens the box.

Everything happening all at once.

I try to stay focused on him, but my eyes are hypnotized by the beauty, the sparkle of the ring.

“Yes,” I say…

And suddenly, I feel Erik putting the ring on my finger.

“Sorry, it took so long…” he says… “I love you.”¬†

We hike back up to the car and head over to Menemsha, to grab a lobster dinner.

On the car ride over, I stare at the ring, excited, shocked, pinching myself to see if this is actually reality.

The next morning we head to the beach one last time, before we have to pick up Erik’s parents at the airport. It is then that I decide to text a photo of the ring, to some close family.

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I have been getting a lot of questions about the stone. This ring is a rare natural black diamond. There are a lot of interesting facts about black diamonds. But one of them is…

“The Karloff Noir diamond is believed to be the world’s largest cut black diamond at 88 carats, and legend has it that when touched, it endows the person with good luck, fortune and happiness.”

Now I have my very own black diamond which only means one thing… I get to spend a life time with Erik.

Summer is coming to an end.
When something ends, new things begin…
On thursday, August 29th, 2013 on the Island Martha’s Vineyard- I got engaged!

© sweatdaily 2013

Transformation Tuesday! Lets talk about progress and balance.

It is running season…

Which means, most runners are training for some sort of fall race, from 5K to 26.2, whichever distance it may be, us runners are out there running.

And although, running is our main priority right now, our focus… some of us runners start to worry…

I want to weight lift, but I need to run…

I want to do yoga, but I should run…

I want to ride my bike, but I gotta get out there and run…

Recently, I have been receiving tons of e-mails regarding how to balance a disciplined running plan and fit in weight lifting, yoga, etc.

Well let me tell you this…

Cross training is important.

Strength training is important.

Yoga/ stretching is important. 

I started running 6 years ago. I became so passionate about running that all I did was run. During the colder winter months after my fall marathon I picked up Bikram yoga. I loved it and became a regular, but still I ran.

When I trained for my first marathon, I followed my training plan religiously – I never missed a run. When I trained for my 2nd marathon, I did exactly the same thing, sometimes I even ran on the day that called for cross training.

However, after spending 9 months in 2012, running in a natural running shoe (newton), focussing on running form, in February 2013, I started weight lifting. I wanted to get stronger to improve my running, and I did. I got stronger, I improved my running. It was shocking I was running a little less, but I was running better than ever.

I am now running faster and further. The combination of being stronger and running with a more efficient stride/form, allows me to run faster, further, with less effort.

My point is you do not have to run every day to be a great runner. Running everyday, could actually make your running suffer, from burn out or injury. It is so important to incorporate strength training, cross training, and stretching in the mix. The stronger you are the less injury prone you will be, and the more your running will improve.

So to answer the question … How do you balance a disciplined running plan and strength training, cross training, stretching. How do you do it all?

It depends on your fitness level, comfort level.

Rookie: If this is your first race (first full marathon, first half marathon, etc.) follow your running training plan. Focus on your running. Stretch after your runs. Rest on your rest days. Cross train once a week. Strength train once a week.

Veteran: If this is your second, third, tenth, time racing this distance, then it is okay to use your training plan as a guideline. At this point, you can tweak and customize you plan. This marathon training season, I have been lifting weights on days when I run short and easy. I always do leg day early in the week after my long run has already been completed.

I also advise taking tons of photos to record your journey as an athlete. This way you can keep track of your progress visually.  Take advantage of photography. We have cameras on our phones, and we are lucky we have technology at our fingertips.

With that being said…

Because it is tuesday, I thought it would be the perfect time to honor Transformation Tuesday. So I am posting some progress pics, in hopes to inspire and motivate.

image-1The above photo was taken in March 2013. The bottom photo was taken in August 2013.

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Arms are seeing some major gains! This photo was taken in August 2013.

Anyway I hope these photos inspire and prove to you that you can balance both training plans. And that in the end being stronger is just going to enhance your overall fitness level.

Questions for You…

  1. How do you balance your training plans?
  2. Do you sometimes do two-a-days?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

Day 2 of Marathon Training

“And yet ultra runners – even the fiercest competitors – grow to love each other because we all love the same exercise in self-sacrifice and pursuit of transcendence. Because that’s what we’re all chasing- that “zone” where we are performing at the peak of our abilities. That instant when we think we can’t go on but we do. We all know the way that moment feels, how rarely it occurs, and the pain we have to endure to grab it back again…
We all struggle to find meaning in a sometime painful world…
We’re all human, that there’s so much messed-up stuff going on, we need to hold on to what we love. “

-Scott Jurek

The above passage is from yet again, Eat and Run. And although, it mentions ultra runners- I believe all runners can relate. People don’t understand why I am so passionate about running, and they wouldn’t, unless they too run. But it is all about the “zone.”

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Day 2 of marathon training was another short 3 mile run. Today the heat and humidity was a little suffocating, but it was tolerable.

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Questions for You…

  1. Have you reached the zone?
  2. What mile are you at, when you reach it?
  3. What sport are you doing when your reach the zone… yoga? running?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

Get your beauty sleep!

This week I really took things easy. I needed a good long week of rest. I ran on Monday. I slept in on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday.

Rest is very important! I can’t stress that enough.

When you lift heavy you create little tears in your muscles. For muscle growth, these tears need to repair. Repairing happens when your body is at rest.

When you run far your body creates lactic acid, which makes muscles sore. Adequate rest and hydration helps flush the body of toxins, reducing soreness and inflammation, preventing injury.

Your body is capable of repairing itself, but it needs rest and hydration in order to do so. It is designed to repair. It wants to repair. So listen to it.

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On Friday, I’m back to grind. I hit the gym hard. It was amazing how much energy I had after a couple days of rest. I worked my back and arms, by combining super sets and active rest periods into the mix.

I have come to the conclusion that I prefer circuit training, supersets, and active rest periods, oppose to heavy lifting with less reps. Simply because it gets me a lot more sweaty. However, I know there is a time and place to do each one. If your goal is to build muscle then lift heavy with less reps. If your goal is to burn fat and build endurance then circuit training, and active rest periods are necessary.

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Always remember that when lifting heavy you should NEED to take at least a 1 minute rest period in between sets. You should feel so tired and out of breath that you need to take a rest before moving on. If you are able to move on to the next set then you are not lifting heavy enough.

MARATHON TRAINING

I have completed the Livefit trainer and because I love it so much and saw amazing results I am repeating phase 2 and 3 again. This time with a closer focus on clean eating, carb cycling, lowering my sugar intake, and upping the protein shake and water intake I am also going to customize the trainer according to what my body needs.

The plan for this coming week is to continue to take it easy with a couple of heavy lifting sessions mixed in. The reason why is because my Marathon training will be starting in a week, and I want to make sure I am physically refreshed and mentally ready.

Marathon training is going to be interesting this time around because I will be training with L. This will be her first full 26.2, so I am going to teach her everything I know about running this distance. I am also going to continue weight lifting and yoga during my training. I also want to cross train on my bike. It will be hard to juggle everything, but it will be important to do so.

I also wanted to mention that I was featured on Fit Blogger.
Please head over there and read my article.
I hope you enjoy it!

To all the Dad’s out there, including mine. I hope you have a wonderful Father’s Day!

© 2013 sweatdaily

I’ve been drinking my sugar.

I don’t eat cupcakes everyday.

I don’t buy bags of candy.

I avoid cookies, brownies, other pasteries.

I never thought I had a sweet tooth, but I am discovering I actually do…

Let me explain…

I have learned tons from the Livefit trainer. Among the many things I have learned how to eat clean. Through the process of adjusting to this eat clean lifestyle, I have learned about macros, and discovered the My Fitness Pal App. This app is amazing. I’ll take anything that will help me stay organized, (my biggest weakness.) After exploring some of my favorite foods through this app, I have realized sugar is everywhere.

Sugar is necessary for good health.

So how much it too much?

How many grams of sugar does the average human need daily?

According to the American Heart Association the average women should limit their intake of sugar to 6 teaspoons, which translates to 30 grams of sugar daily. For men, AHA recommends no more than 9 teaspoons, which translates to 45 grams of sugar daily.

Now there are different types of sugar, natural sugar found in fruits and vegetables, and added sugar found in deserts, drinks, condiments, etc. This measurement the AHA is recommending is for added sugar, and this is where my problem lays. I drink a ton of tea, most of the time sweetened. I also drink a ton of sugar filled coffee drinks. So it is time to make a change.

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Over the last year I have been really good about shopping organic, cooking my own meals, meal prepping. All of this has played a major role in me seeing results. Professionals say in order to see results its 80% diet, 20% exercise. And although, I have been eating clean, what I am discovering is I am drinking my sugar.

So I am going to declare a goal/challenge. I am going to start paying closer attention to how much sugar I am getting daily, no processed sugars. I am going to give up my sugary teas/lattes for 30 days, hoping that when the 30 days are up I won’t desire them anymore. This is going to be a tough challenge for me, especially during the summer when nothing is better than having a sweet iced tea, or an iced latte. But the truth is, I rarely drink alcoholic beverages, so if I can get rid of this bad habit, I will be golden.

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On another note, I can’t believe how stupid I was. Yes, I know that Starbucks drinks are sugary, but honestly my jaw dropped when I saw how many grams were in some of these drinks. My all time favorite Chai latte has in the grande size over 40 grams of sugar, and then in the venti size 66 grams. Ugh. While people talk about cheat meals, I have been having cheat drinks.

Also, I follow tons of Fitness models and competitors on Instagram. They are a wonderful source of inspiration and information. When they are in training mode or preparing for a photo shoot, most limit their sugar intake to 30 grams or lower daily, this includes natural sugars. However, this may seem extreme to some.

So now that you know my challenge, my goal… let me tell you the game plan.

I am going to continue reading Instagram, Tumblr, blogs, books, magazines, for inspiration and information. I am going to keep my fridge stocked with healthy (natural sugars) fruit and veggies, that are colorful and in season. When I drink tea, it will be organic, fresh brewed unsweetened. If I need it flavored or sweetened, I will add fruit or mint, and only sweeten with stevia. Same for coffee drinks. I am hoping this will help limit my sugar intake, but also get me drinking more water and protein shakes.

Anyway, the other day I was craving sweets, so I decided to go shopping. I ended up picking up these colorful organic beauties.

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My favorite part about the seasons changing, is that the food changes too.

Questions for you?

  1. What is your favorite thing about the seasons changing?
  2. Do you eat too much sugar?

Join me with my challenge! We can keep each other on point. For more inspiration follow me on Instagram. 

© 2013 sweatdaily

I Challenge you to…

Hey lovelies,

I have been feeling pretty amazing lately…

Because of you, I have never been so inspired.

Because of my hard work, I have never seen so much progress.

The What’s Beautiful Competition has exposed me to some amazing female athletes, who are setting goals, and reaching them. Because of this I am finding myself feeling more organized, and pushing myself to my fullest potential.

The Livefit trainer has done this for me as well. Although, it is not customized to the individual, (the exercises were hard, intense actually,) but it has made things easy. With out this plan, I would have been totally lost not knowing what to do in the weight room, but instead every exercise and meal was laid out for me with directions and videos. I have been amazed with how much I have learned about lifting heavy, circuit training, heart rate, eating clean, macros, supplements, etc.

I now more than ever, want to become certified in personal training, and sports nutrition. (This is something I have thought about for a very long time, but now I am going to do it.)

I have inspired J and L Рthey both want to complete phases 2 and 3.  So I have decided to repeat Phases 2 and 3 of the Livefit trainer. This time I am going to focus a little closer on eating clean.

This week L and I hit the weight room and started the first week of phase 2. I have realized that this is going to be quite interesting. By repeating these phases I  am getting the opportunity to really see my progress, because I am lifting heavier than ever. I am setting new PRs on most exercises. When I first started lifting I was using 5-10 lb dumbbells and a 20 lb bar, now I am using 15-20 lb dumbbells and 40 lb bar. I am much stronger then I use to be.

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Another thing I am setting new PRs in is my running. Because of my new strength I am also running further and faster.

Also, because of the What’s Beautiful competition I am learning new things like how to use the TRX for planks and push ups. And because the What’s Beautiful competition is all about challenges – I will leave you with this challenge. How many push ups can you do in 1 minute?

 

263229_10101135950428286_874631665_n-1See how many I can do by checking out my video on YouTube.

Good Luck on the challenge! And make sure you let me know how you do!

How many push ups can you do?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

I’m in love with ALEX AND ANI…

I’m in love…

with ALEX AND ANI…

With the exception of wearing my Garmin when I run, I use to never wear anything on my wrists. Two years ago, I bought my first Michael Kors oversize boyfriend watch in rose gold. I loved it so much that I rarely went a day with out it (being a hairstylist this kept me on time for all of my clients.)

A couple years ago my sister became pretty obsessed with Pandora. I love the idea of wearing a charm bracelet, but never took the plunge – those Pandora charms can be really pricey.

Being introduced to ALEX AND ANI…

I was first introduced to ALEX AND ANI from E who had received it as a gift. Later, on Instagram my cousin has posted a pic of her ALEX AND ANI collection. I was really loving the way ALEX AND ANI looked, and the idea behind it as well.

The day we first met…

Back in April, while heading down to the GT waterfront, for the NWM expo, I noticed ALEX AND ANI, located on M street. I told L, that after the expo we have to take a mandatory stop at ALEX AND ANI. L wears tons of bracelets and I knew she would fall in love too.

What is ALEX AND ANI…

ALEX AND ANI is a company that sells charm bracelets. However, these are different from you traditional charm bracelet. Instead of having a bracelet that you had charms to, ALEX AND ANI are bracelets that have a charm on them already. You never add more charms to the bracelet, but rather buy another whole bracelet with another different charm. The idea is to have a collection of bracelets that end up being charm bangles. They come in silver or gold. You can choose to have all silver, all gold, or a mixture of both. Each charm represents the vibe or energy you give off, and helps reveal your true identity. They have a variety of different charms, including tons of yoga inspired charms.

So below are the ALEX AND ANI I have…

Alex and Ani

Alex and Ani 2

Sometimes I wear all of them. Sometimes I switch up the order. The possibilities are endless.

This brand being from New England, now has 2 locations in the DC area. One is located on M street in GT, the other in National Harbor.

Questions fro You…

  1. What brand do you love?
  2. What accessory do you wear everyday?
  3. Do you have any ALEX AND ANI?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Want to be inspired? Join Under Armour What’s Beautiful 3.0 campaign

The Artist is the Creator of beautiful things.” – Oscar Wilde.

… and this is true, but so is the athlete.

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Under Armour is doing something beautiful. They have created the Under Armour What’s Beautiful 3.0 campaign/competition… and guess what? You can be a part it!

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The Details 

Under Armour wants you to define What’s beautiful. They want you to define what it means to be the ultimate female athlete. They have created this competition so you can set goals and show the world how you accomplish them. Become a Goal Setter. Have a game plan. Accomplish the unthinkable. Because the unthinkable is possible. Why? Because you are beautiful. You are an athlete. You can and will.

Step to Join

  1. Go to http://whatsbeautiful.ua.com
  2. Create a user name and password.
  3. Upload a photo to your newly created profile page.
  4. Write a short paragraph declaring your goals.
  5. To share your journey upload photos and videos of your progress, accomplishing and achieving each goal.
  6. Also share your photos on Instagram. Hashtag photos using #Iwill #whatsbeautiful
  7. To keep me inspired and motivated and connected to your progress and success, tag me on Instagram @dorseyml

The Prize

By mid July, Under Armour will choose three women, who went above and beyond, and send them to Costa Rica for yoga and surf lessons. But along the way, through out this competition, Under Armour will be giving away swag weekly.

What I have learned since joining What’s Beautiful…

This has become more than a competition it has become a community of women, empowering each other. Through this competition, I am able to connect with people and share my knowledge while motivating others. In return I continue to be inspired, and learn new things regarding health and fitness.

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So join today. Click here to see my profile page, and follow me,¬†and I’ll follow you back!

Don’t Forget...

Also when you record progress, successfully accomplish a goal or complete a challenge, not only upload your photo to your profile page with in the What’s Beautiful community, but also to Instagram. So I can stay inspired and motivated, please tag me, @dorseyml. Also use hashtags #Iwill #whatsbeautiful.

I am excited for all of you to join! Can’t wait to share knowledge,¬†inspire, and motivate each other. Lets do this Ladies!! Lets kick some serious Ass!!

Questions for You…

  1. What inspires you?
  2. Are you going to join What’s Beautiful? ¬†let me know so I can follow your journey!!

© 2013 sweatdaily

Transformation Tuesday

There are a lot of different themes on Instagram. To name a few, there is Throwback Thursday aka TBT, or on Friday, Flex Friday. All of the themes on Instagram are really fun to participate in.  However, out of all of them Transformation Tuesday is my favorite.

I love Transformation Tuesday because this theme is the most inspiring. It is extremely motivating seeing people’s transformations. How far they have come. How much weight they have lost. How much muscle they have gained. It is the ultimate proof, that if you make a lifestyle change of eating clean organic food and dedicate time to training hard, you will see results.

Because you are seeing yourself every day, sometimes it is hard to notice the positive change. I find it helpful to take progress pics and I label them with the date they were taken, that way I can really compare, and appreciate my hard work.

So here it is my progress pic, my Transformation Tuesday. transformation tuesday

I am hoping my progress pics will inspire you, as much as other people’s have inspired me.

I also came across this amazing blog post,

This Trendy ‚ÄúStrong is the New Skinny‚ÄĚ Thing (and what it could mean for the next generation of¬†girls).

This is a must read so click here and read it now. It basically talks about the American tragedy of how and why a large majority of young girls spend their time obsessing over their weight.  Devoting endless hours, energy, emotions, and effort into being skinny.

This is my favorite pic from the blog.

This is my favorite pic from the blog.

The author claims that her new goal has changed from ‚Äúbe a size zero to¬†do a motherfucking pull up.”

 

254cc5b92387a31c8da38770cacaa81dIn the blog post she reveals how painfully awful it was to be 104 pounds- all skin and bones, and how amazing she feels now strong and fit.  Wishing someone would have told her sooner that Strong is the new Skinny, she is now trying to encourage girls to be strong, fit, healthy.

I love everything about this post and honestly couldn’t agree more – Strong is the new Skinny! And as you can tell from my progress pic, I was never fat, trying to loose weight, but rather I was just skinny,¬†scrawny, (even though I was running everyday)¬†Now, after adding weight lifting to the mix, I not only look stronger, but I actually am…

oh and p.s. I can do a motherfucking pull up. 

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© 2013 sweatdaily

Circuit Training… The low down.

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It is rise and grind time baby! 

Lets do this!

Circuit Training

I am now on day 71 of Jamie Eason’s Livefit trainer! Today’s workout is Circuit Training.¬† Circuit training is something we have all heard of, but what is it exactly?? In this circuit, I completed 20 reps for every exercise back to back, without rest, for a total of 140 consecutive reps. Then I rested 3 minutes between each circuit and then repeated the full circuit 2 more times.

For these circuits, I did not lift heavy, because circuit training is not about building muscle. In these circuits I used the weight that was heaviest, while still being able to complete the full 20 reps for each exercise, 140 consecutive reps for the circuit.

 

Confession: I loved this circuit. I also love how I am really seeing results. However, honestly, I have been having a hard time fitting in my Cardio sessions.

New Goal: I am definitely going to start waking up earlier (6:30 am) and getting to the gym at least 30 mins earlier than I have been.

Questions for You…

  1. What is your favorite way to lift weights? supersets? active rest periods? circuit training
  2. Have you tried circuit training before?

Try this Circuit and let me know what you think??

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

Who would have thought… The gym has become my playground!!

I know I have posted this motivational quote time and time again. tumblr_mijzdgHfwG1rwkaswo1_500

But I had to post it again, because it is the TRUTH! I am actually very shocked I have seen such results this quickly. Maybe it is because I have always had confidence in my body, and didn’t feel like I needed to change much. I went into this trainer, hoping to build strength so I could better myself as a runner, not really thinking about what I would physically change appearance wise.

My upper body has always been skinny and weak. My core was by far the weakest part of my body. People always told me strengthen your core and you will be able to run further and faster. So that is what I did, during this trainer, and now I am running better than ever.

PROGRESS PIC

Anyway, I wanted to post a progress pic. I found a photo of me from 6 months ago wearing the same outfit as I was a couple days ago. week 9 results

6 months ago I had already ran the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler 2012 and The Parkway Classic 10 Miler 2012. I was running 5-6 days a week and I had been training for the Annapolis 10 miler. In the photo above I was at the Annapolis 10 miler expo getting my bib. So I was very athletic, but running my body was not sculpted with muscle.

As you can see in the photo above my upper body was very weak and skinny. My core was weak as well, and my body overall was just not as toned. I had a different shape. If you look at the current photo, taken April 5th, you will see my shoulders are starting to take shape, my arms and chest are much more toned. My core and hip area are showing strength. Overall my body has a more sculpted shape. I feel stronger and my running has improved.

LIVEFIT TRAINER UPDATE…

At the moment, I am currently finishing up week 9 of the livefit trainer! Week 9 is the first week of phase 3. In this phase we are incorporating (all of these are defined by bodybuilding.com.

  • Supersets:¬†performing the first exercise and then immediately do the next exercise. Only then do you take the 2-minute rest in between before repeating again.
  • Triple set:¬†Perform the first exercise, followed immediately by the second exercise, followed immediately by the third exercise. Only then do you take the 2-minute rest in between before repeating again.
  • Active rest:¬†Do the first exercise, and then instead of resting, perform the active-rest movement (for example, jump rope). Immediately repeat the first exercise.

The supersets is something that was introduced in phase 2, but the triple set and active rest is something that is new to phase 3. The superset and triple set is suppose to help you continue to build muscle and maintain the muscle you have. The active rest period gets your heart rate up so you are able to burn fat. I actually really like the active rest part, way better than just resting. Before when it was mandatory to take a minute or two in between sets, I always felt antsy to continue on. I love having active rest periods, but boy does it kick my ass. 

On leg day, some examples of an active rest periods are squat jumps and jumping rope. So I bought this new jump rope, so I would personally have my own at the gym. 529476_10101060508754006_1519705170_n-1

On upper body days, active rest periods consist of ab work/core strengthening, and tons of push ups. The hardest push ups yet are kettle bell push ups.  (photo found on bodybuilding.com)

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My favorite new core strengthening exercise is the Exercise Ball Pull In. (photos found on bodybuilding.com.)

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Anyway, those are my two favorite new exercises, and above are the new terms added to phase 3 of the livefit trainer! Another new thing added is treadmill sprints. This is something that I can tolerate, because it is switching up routine on the treadmill, so it is not as boring.

I never thought I would enjoy weight lifting as much as I have. The work has been hard, but I really do like pushing my body, and challenging myself. I have seen amazing results, in myself, and my running.

Although, I always head outside for my runs. When it comes to weigh lifting… The¬†gym has become my playground!!

Question for You…

  • Where is your playground? examples:¬†pool, the ski slopes, the¬†half pipe, the trail, yoga studio, the gym, tennis court …
  • Do you prefer to work out indoors or outside?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Funeral for My Fat

inspire

INSPIRE

My desire to seek knowledge is constant. Along with this knowledge seeking desire, I am on a never-ending quest to find inspiration. This is how and why my addiction to reading blogs developed in the first place.  Which then later led to creating my very own blog(s).

I just can’t help myself…

I want to learn more…

I want to be inspired…

I want to inspire others…

With that being said, let me tell you who inspires me…

Let me introduce you to Sharee! We have never met face to face, but she has an inspiring story. Sooo inspiring, that I find her worthy enough to write a blog post about her. She is the writer and owner of the blog, Funeral for My Fat.

Sharee is a 23 year old female, who in the last five years, has lost 118 lbs. She changed her life around, by becoming vegan, and working hard, sweating in the gym. She wears black when she works out because it is a funeral for her fat, hence her blog name.

She is 5’8. Her highest weight was 256 lbs and now she is down to 138 lbs. Earlier this month, she had surgery to remove loose skin in her midsection and upper thighs. It will take her two months to recover, which means no working out.

In her honor, a lot of her blog followers are wearing black in the gym.

482067_10101039998127466_1965005441_nSo if you are looking for inspiration, check out her blog,¬†Funeral for My Fat. And wear black in the gym, in honor of a fast and speedy recovery for Sharee! Also try Sharee’s Starbucks drink, Iced Hazelnut Soy Latte, great for post work out.

Be Inspired…

Inspire others….

Sweat daily…

Questions for you…

  1. Who has made your blog roll?
  2. Who inspires you?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

 

 

Livefit Trainer, Week 5, Progress Pic

Update of the Livefit trainer…

I wanted to update you on the Livefit trainer. I have just completed week 5. Today is my rest day, which means tomorrow is my first day of week 6. It is hard to believe I am halfway through the trainer.

Phase 2 has begun…

Week 5 is the first week of Phase 2. And let me tell you this week had been super intense! However, Jamie Eason claims that it is just the beginning. Let me explain to you what Phase 2 is all about.

Remember how in Phase 1, there was NO CARDIO… which meant no running. Oh how I missed my runner’s high. Jamie Eason wanted to use Phase 1 as a muscle building phase. She also wanted us to focus on our clean eating diet which meant eating whole clean foods, as 5-6 small meals in three hour intervals.

Well in Phase 2, we are still building muscle. Actually, there are way more work outs. Some work outs are combined with another as a super set. Other work outs have reps up to 20 or 30.  Another thing that has finally been added is 30 minute cardio sessions,which Jamie Eason suggests doing after you weight lift. This means running for me. Yippee! We are also continuing to eat clean, 5-6 small meals a day, in three hour intervals. Drinking tons of water, and taking our supplements. One new thing, Jamie Eason suggest, that I am going to start to do is using the app My Fitness Pal, which will help me keep track of my calories, making sure I get enough.

Week 5 has been intense, because it has been more time consuming, but I haven’t missed a day. Today is my much needed rest day. Tomorrow week 6 begins. I am also starting my half marathon training. In order to fit all this in, and stay on top of everything, I am going to be waking up earlier. I have a feeling there might be some days where I will be doing a double, but I am going to try my hardest to try to avoid this and just get all my work outs done in the morning time, before work.

Phase 2, Week 5

Day 29 – Back/ Cardio

  • ¬†Seated Cable Rows¬†–¬†3 sets of 8 reps – (40 lbs)
  • End of superset; resume normal sets

Day 30 – Chest/Abs

  • ¬†Superset:

Day 31- Legs

    • ¬†Leg Extensions¬†–¬†2 warm-up sets with lighter weight for 30 reps – (I used 30 lbs and it was killer.¬†
    • ¬†Wide Stance Barbell Squat¬†–¬†2 lighter sets of 15 reps, 2 heavier sets to failure – (First two sets with 50 lbs, Last two sets 70 – 90 lbs)
    • ¬†Leg Press¬†–¬†4 sets of 8 reps- (90 lbs)
    • ¬†Walking Barbell Lunge¬†– ¬†3 sets of 20 reps, baby steps (30 lbs)

Day 31 – Arms, Abs, Cardio

  • Barbell Curl¬†–¬†3 sets of 10 reps – ( 1 set 20 lbs. It was too light, ¬†so I went up to 30 lbs. Someone is getting stronger. ūüôā )

Superset:

End of superset; resume normal sets

  • ¬†Hanging Leg Raise¬†(or roman chair) –¬†3 sets of 10 reps – (body weight) I like roman chair better.
  • 30 minute Cardio session on treadmill. I hate the treadmill, because I would rather be running outside. But I ended up, having a sweaty fast treadmill run, working on speed work.

Day 33 – Shoulder/ Cardio

  • Smith Machine Military Press¬†–¬†1 warm-up set, 3 sets of 10 reps – (I got up to 30 lbs on this, but I didn’t like it. I have done this one before with just a 30 lb bar with my chair in and incline position, and felt it much more, so I think I will do that for now on.

Superset:

End of superset; resume normal sets

J and I headed to the gym by 7:00 am. We were completely done with this work out by 8:30 am. It felt really good to have it done that early. 

Day 34- Legs

I was up and at the gym by 8:00. I wasn’t able to finish this work out because I had to be at work by 10, so had to leave the gym by 9:00. This was an intense work out and my legs were still really sore from working out earlier during the week. So I am going to finish this work out tomorrow along with completing day 36 which is back and cardio.

Tomorrow is also suppose to be very snowy in my area. So my cardio session might end up being another treadmill session. Oh well, I’ll do what I have to do. Desperately wishing it was spring.

Anyhow, at the end of Phase 1, I snapped a progress pic I wanted to share with you. This is my first progress pic, I took last week at the end of phase 1 beginning of phase 2.

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Trust me, I didn’t have arms or shoulders like that before. This is proof that 4 weeks of lifting weights really can transform your body.

tumblr_mijzdgHfwG1rwkaswo1_500Found this motivational picture on tumblr, and felt it fit this post perfectly. It has been 4 weeks and I have noticed a change in my body, and I feel much stronger. It will be interesting to take another photo when 8 weeks approaches, and then again when 12 approaches.

I wish it was already TOMORROW…

because…

I can’t wait to start week 6. Although I hate the gym, I ¬†have found a new love for weight lofting… so I hope the snow doesn’t close the gym . ūüėČ

P.S. I am now officially starting my half marathon training as well… so I will post my training program tomorrow.

Questions for You?

  1. What races are you training for?
  2. What training program do you follow?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

 

Missing my RUNNER’S HIGH.

Tuesday was Mardi Gras. Wednesday was Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. Today, is Valentine’s Day. All of these special days falling in one crazy week. I am so thankful today, although it is everyone’s Thursday, it is my Friday. (If that makes since…)

AT THE SALON

This has been a crazy work week for me. I have had a week full of hair color transformations. It is only mid February, but for some reason everyone wants to go lighter. I wasn’t expecting to change my brunettes to blonde bombshells until March or April, but it happened this week, which meant long days, and late nights at the salon.

LIVEFIT UPDATE

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PHASE 1, WEEK 3, DAYS 16,17,18

DAY 16, Monday, 2/11/13,

BACK and BICEPS

  • Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (30lbs) alternative work out PULL UPS
  • Seated Narrow Grip Cable Rows¬†– 3 sets 10 rep – (30lbs)

  • T-Bar Row¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (10lb weight, 20lb bar, total 30lbs.

  • Back Extensions¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (body weight or hold weight with arm across chest) NOTE: This is my new favorite work out for lower back muscles.

  • ¬†¬†Barbell Curl¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (20lb straight bar) NOTE: I really felt this worked my biceps. They were super sore the next day.
  • ¬†Incline Dumbbell Curl¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (started first set with 5 lbs just to work on proper for then went up to 10 lbs for the rest of the sets)¬†
  • ¬†Alternate Hammer Curl¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (10 lbs)

Tuesday, 2/12/13, REST DAY

The original plan for this day was to hit the gym at night. I am busy all day with an art class and work, so night time is the only time I have to work out. I ended up not being able to get home until 9:00 pm and the gym closes at 11. I decided I didn’t want to be the one closing the gym, so I used this as a rest day and planned to do that day’s work out, Day 17, the next day along with that day’s work out. Double duty. Didn’t want to fall behind.

THE DOUBLE DUTY DAY

DAY 17 & DAY 18, Wednesday, 2/14/13

CHEST, TRICEPS

LEGS

Today, Thursday, 2/14/13 is DAY 19 of LIVEFIT. I will be hitting the gym this afternoon, to work on Shoulders & Abs. I will not be taking any more rest days until the end of phase 1. If for some reason I can’t make it to the gym, I will take a rest day and do double duty the following day. But this is only if for some reason I am desperate and can’t make it to the gym. Jamie Eason does have 2 videos of at home work outs just in case, but I’d rather just try to stick to the program as closely as I can.

SEEING RESULTS

First things First. I am desperately missing my RUNNER’S HIGH! But I also can’t believe how fast Phase 1 is flying on by. Today will be the last day of week 3 and then I am moving right on to week 4. 1 more week and then Phase 2 begins, where you can introduce cardio into the program, and for me running. Yippee!! Can’t wait to experience my runner’s high again. However, I will admit that I have really enjoyed focusing on getting stronger. I think that it is super important, and it gave me the opportunity to focus on eating clean as well. Plus, waiting to run, will just make my runner’s high that much sweeter.

I also wanted to tell you, that I am starting to see some results, and feel them too. I didn’t think I would see much results especially this fast, because I am an athlete already in pretty good shape. But, my arms are starting to take shape, and I have began to see even more definition in my legs and abs. As for feeling results, I am feeling stronger. I also have been really tired lately, but I think that has a lot to do with work and not really the Livefit program. I am pretty sore though, everyday. I am also much more hungry, but I think that is because my growing muscles need fuel and my metabolism is fired up.

CHALLENGES

I have already been eating clean for about 9 months now, but I was having challenges with eating enough calories. I am doing much better about preparing my meals, and packing my food. The two things I need to work on now, is drinking more water, and making more protein shakes. But I am still taking my other supplements.

So that sums up my update with the Livefit program. I can’t wait for Phase 2 to begin, in about a week, because during Phase 2 I will also start my half marathon training.

I found this on tumblr... Now she is hardcore!

I found this on tumblr… Now she is hardcore!

Oh BTW, I updated my about page, so check it out. I also updated my race times. Please follow me on twitter, athlinks, and instagram.

Questions for You

  1. Do you eat clean? What is your favorite eat clean food/meal?
  2. What challenges do you have it your fitness routine?
  3. To my Runner followers: What is the longest amount of time have you gone with out running?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Meeting my Idol, starting a new Challenge.

It is June. I am in the airport in Salt Lake City, Utah, heading back to the east coast after my twelve day getaway to the wild wild west. I am on the moveable aisle heading in one direction, towards my gate. On the other side, heading in the other direction, I see a beautiful woman. Immediately I recognize her blonde bob, stacked in the back, angled around her chin. She has the prefect body, extremely lean and fit. She is shorter than I imagined her to be. She must be 5’2, only one inch taller than me. All of these thoughts fill my mind, and with in seconds, I blurt out to my bf, “Oh my goodness, I just spotted a famous person.”¬†

“Where? he asks. “I don’t see anyone famous?”

“The blonde,” I tell him.

“Oh… the woman with the guns.”

“Yes! She is a famous fitness model, from Oxygen magazine. My idol.”¬†

I continue walking to our gate, while my bf encourages me to turn around and introduce myself to her. And because we have time to spare, that is exactly what we do. We start walking in the direction she was walking, but she is no where in sight. Finally I spot her in the food quart.

While everyone around her is eating McDonalds or the Chinese food option, that might as well be McDonalds, she is there clean eating with her homemade lunch. I know this sounds kind of stalkerish, but she is my idol, the one that got me interested in living a more fit and healthy life. By reading her articles in Oxygen magazine I  have learned how to lift weights properly, and was motivated to get to the gym everyday! (Of course I have grown since then, and now prefer yoga studios, and running outside.)

I approach her, by saying I am sorry to disturb her, while she is eating lunch. Then I ask her if she is a famous fitness model for Oxygen magazine. She answers, yes and introduces herself, and then hugs me. I tell her she is beautiful and a total inspiration. Then we part ways. I do have a plane to catch.

So that was the day I was starstruck, and that was the unforgettable day I met my fitness idol, Jamie Eason. 

The only regret I have, is that I didn’t get a photo of the two of us.¬†

537031_10100941247080356_1712749712_nSo above is my first Oxygen magazine with Jamie Eason, printed in June of 2007. I also am showing you my free weights, which is an inexpensive but great investment. You should always have free weights at hand. The top left picture is of the supplements that I have recently purchased. Where am I going with this?

Well end of January through February is the only gap of time that I do not have a race that I need to train for. I call this time my off season. This is the time that I casually run and have more time to incorporate different types of work outs into my fitness routine. I remember, months ago, having a desire to strength train. Weight training along with yoga is so important for runners. Building muscle makes you stronger, which improves your running. The stronger you are the better your natural running form becomes, and this helps prevent injury.

So finally I will have the time to focus on building muscle, which is easier said than done. I never thought I would follow a fitness program. But then I realized I have never run a marathon with out a training plan. I actually ran my fastest half marathon this December by, following a half marathon plan. So I guess I am the type of athlete that finds success when I follow a program. So after researching crossfit, wish I could do it, but it is just not in my budget right now. Then I read reviews on P90X and insanity, but finally found the Livefit trainer by Jamie Eason.

It is a 12 week training plan, broken down in 3 phases, and it is totally free. I love Jamie Eason, so I though might as well try her plan.

So today, is day one of the Livefit trainer with Jamie Eason. I can’t wait to begin, and I am so happy that my younger sister will be joining me for this challenge. I will be blogging everyday about my experience. And I have a feeling that both my sister and I will have amazing results. Her goal, is to begin a healthy lifestyle. Mine is to add some strength, lean out my body, and prepare it for when I start my training for my races I have lined up for this spring.

If anyone wants to jump on this challenge with me feel free, we can do it together. Now is the perfect time. You will have a lean body by the end of April.

Questions for You?

  1. Has anyone had success with the Livefit program?
  2. Have you ever had the chance to meet you idol?
  3. Who inspires you in the fitness industry?

© 2013 sweatdaily

8 mile runs on Monday mornings…

Now, if you are from a place, where it is seriously cold, and you are getting dumped on with snow, you are probably thinking this girl should count her blessings. But let me tell ya, I would rather have snow than rain. I would rather it be 30 degrees and sunny. I can tolerate crisp, refreshing, winter air, as long as, the sun is shining bright. ¬†With that being said…

It has been dark and dreary. Fog has formed, and a cold mist of rain has been lingering since early last week. It is totally dull, gloomy, depressing. I know it is January, but the weatherman promised the weekend would be a warm 65 degrees.

He lied.

It stayed around 50 degrees, the sun never came out, it was raining, but I still ran. I actually ran everyday…

Saturday, 1/12/13 – I ran an easy 5 mile run. It was 50 degrees, but gray and gloomy.

Sunday, 1/13/13 – ¬†I woke up early, and met L before work, for a 5.32 mile run. This one was full of “bitch” hills. It was a little warmer than 50 degrees, but again gray and gloomy.

Monday, 1/14/13 – I met up with L and ran 8.29 miles. This was the warmest of all the days, being 61 degrees. It still was gray and gloomy, with rain. This run actually felt amazing, and gave me the energy I needed for the rest of the day.

Today, Tuesday, 1/15/13 – I had my Art class in the morning, before work, so I took a rest day. It was gray, gloomy, and by the end of the day the rain was coming down hard.

You are probably wondering what is giving me my drive, to run on miserable, dull, winter days of gloom?

Well…

I am reading an amazing book called, Eat and Run, by Scott Jurek. It is inspiring me in many ways, including giving me motivation to run an eight mile run on a rain drizzle filled monday morning, like yesterday.

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(photo taken from my iPhone)

“and now, running had turned into something other than training. It had turned into a kind of meditation, a place where I could let my mind… float free.”

Above is one of my favorite passages from the book, so far. Trust me, there are many more quotes to share… and although, the weather around here has been totally depressing, running in it, though it, all around it, feels good and keeps me sane.

Questions for You?

  1. What is the weather like near you?
  2. What motivates you to work out, run, eat healthy?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

Running Music

It has always been a common debate of whether running with music helps or hurts you as a runner. When I was training for my first Marathon in 2009, I had a running buddy that never ran with music. We would meet up for runs, and right before we started I would always turn on two things – my iPod and my Garmin, mean while he didn’t have either of these. I asked him why he didn’t enjoy running with music? He replied that running with music did not make him a consistently paced runner. A fast song made him run faster, when a slow song made him run slower.

There is also always the topic of safety. Why else are headphones banned from races? But who follows that rule anyway…

I have had a lot of non runners, scold me about running with music/headphones, because it alters my sense of hearing, making it dangerous. I guess this could be true, not being able to hear a cyclist behind me, on the trail. A car honking when I cross the street. A dog barking. A kid laughing. And because I am a female runner, the odds of a possible predator approaching me from behind is much greater than if I was a male runner. All of these scenarios are dangerous, but even more so with my sense of hearing impaired. (Oh and even even more dangerous if you are on a bike. If you are a cyclist, it is a whole different story.)

Although this is all true, I still love running with music and rarely go for a run with out my iPod. However, with that being said, I want to make one thing clear- I do not rely on my iPod to carry me through the miles. I am capable of running with out music, and actually during my first marathon, there were so many spectators with cool signs, that I didn’t pay much attention to my running playlist until the last 5k.

So being a female runner, running with music, I have to be even more aware of my surroundings – but believe me I am, because I use my eyes. I am constantly scanning, I don’t want to miss anything. Plus, now that I am running in a more minimalist shoe- I can feel the ground. By wearing a more minimalist shoe I am able to use my sense of touch, which allows me to be way more in tuned with my body, my running form, the run itself.

But back to the music… One of the top reasons I love running with music is not because it betters me as a runner, but rather because it is the one time during the day that I get the opportunity to totally engross myself with my favorite tunes.

Don’t get me wrong, I listen to music pretty much my whole day. I listen to the radio in the car, but I don’t choose the music. Pandora plays in the background, while I am at work, but I can’t really listen to it, because I am busy with clients. So while I am running my morning route, I am able to stop thinking, instead I run, and listen, listen to the newest music on my iPod.

Now because I run so much,  my playlist quickly become boring. So I am always on the search for new music. Lately, I am all about Lindsey Stirling. 

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Lindsey is a violinist. In her album, Lindsey Stirling by Lindsey Stirling, she creates 12 instrumental songs, blending both classic violin with her signature¬†electronic violin style. I know this is a unique choice of music to suggest you to download, but aren’t you bored of the same old music? Aren’t you desperately searching for something new and different to listen to on your long runs? Well trust me Lindsey Stirling is your answer. Although, her music is instrumental violin, you will not be put to sleep. This music will get you pumped and make you run faster and faster.

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So although, there are negative things about running with music, there are many positive things as well, including increasing your cadence. Lindsey Stirling is who I am listening to while I run. Who are you listening too?

Questions for You…

  1. Do you listen to music when you run?
  2. What is on your running playlist?

© 2013 sweatdaily

all photos were found on google

2012 Highlights

This is one of my favorite times of year. It is a New Year. A new beginning. It is your opportunity to have a fresh new start. But one of my favorite things to do, durning this time is taking a look back on the year that has just ended. My yoga teacher would tell me not to dwell. Do the pose, now let it go, forget about it, and then move on and do the next posture. This is great advice, but sometimes it is nice to look back, I highly recommend it.

It is funny how people starts New Years resolutions, ¬†and then they feel bad when they do not stick to them. Then time goes by and maybe you can’t even remember what your New Years resolution was in the first place. Or maybe you are the total opposite and you set your New Years resolution and you stick to it and it totally changes who you are. For example, maybe you are that girl that looses a 100 lbs, and ends up on the Today show… it could happen… right?

But do you really need to set a New Years resolution? ¬†As I take a look back on my 2012 year, I notice a lot of amazing things went down. Most of these amazing things had nothing to do with my New Years resolution. I have noticed that my New Years resolution isn’t very significant at all, because I am self-consciously¬†always setting small goals for myself, in every aspect of my life. ¬†Plus life itself is pretty amazing. It sends us opportunities and challenges, that are unplanned and out of our control.

So with that being said,  in hope to inspire you in some way, I will share with you my highlights of 2012. Enjoy!

IMG_0428_2ART: In January 2012, I started the winter session of my drawing class at The Torpedo Factory. My teacher Tanya is amazing. She taught me that our eyes will isolate things, but as an artist you must see the full picture not only looking for the positive space, but also the negative space.

What is an object, if it has nothing you can relate it to? Everything is about relationships. In order to determine, size, shape, depth, tone… you can not isolate objects, you must relate them to other things. The most interesting thing about this class is that because I am a hair stylist I was able to relate everything to haircutting and color. It definitely made me more creative at work. ¬†The winter session starts up again, next week. I can’t wait!

TRAVEL: I use to always travel internationally, with a passion for Europe and South America.  However the past couple years I have had the opportunity to explore some different parts of the USA. Trust me, when I say this, our country is beautiful, and we have some amazing places to see.

So in February 2012, I traveled down to New Orleans. I had never been that south before, so I didn’t really know what to expect but New Orleans is overflowing with culture. The architecture is a mix between southern, but also has a lot of Spanish European influence. The food is a mix of cajun spices, but they have some of the best seafood as well. There is a spooky feeling, that hangs over the city. All of the graveyards are above ground, and voodoo dolls are sold at the flea markets. However, because of the Spanish European influence there are a lot of gorgeous Catholic Churches.

I went down there for Mardi Gras, with a friend of mine who use to live there, and later, while I was there, I met up with an old friend that I went to grade school with, who lives there now – So I was in great company. We did as the locals did- A drink was always in my hand, even while walking in the street, to the next bar/parade. The whole city pretty much closed down for the week, and everyone of all ages were partying in the streets.

I made new friends.

I made new friends.

I met up with old friends.

I met up with old friends.

I drank a lot!

I drank a lot!

I ate a lot!

I ate a lot!

I wore a green wig!

I wore a green wig!

In June 2012, I went out west, to explore Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Oregon, and Utah. The best parts of this trip were, Boise, The Shoshone Waterfalls, Idaho Falls, Yellow Stone National Park, Jackson Hole, and Craters of the Moon. Meeting, the fitness model Jamie Eason, in Salt Lake was pretty cool too.

horses in Idaho

horses in Idaho

The Shoshone Falls

The Shoshone Falls

bison in yellowstone

bison in yellowstone

Yoga in Montana.

Yoga in Montana.

Caving

Caving! Craters of the Moon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In July 2012, it seemed like I was on a plane every week. My Grammy, had surgery and could not recover. I flew to Massachusetts/ Connecticut to visit her in the hospital on her birthday. A couple days later I went to Los Angeles, California for intense hair training with Sebastian Professionals. During my few spare minutes I went running on the beach in Santa Monica.

Sebastian girls in LA

Sebastian girls in LA

After my trip to LA, my Grammy passed on, so I went back up to Massachusetts for her funeral. She lived a wonderful 84 years, and although she is gone, she has helped form me into the lady I am today. She will always live on through me and the others who love her.

In September 2012, I again headed to Massachusetts, but this time to Martha’s Vineyard.¬†¬†I ran the coast of Martha’s Vineyard almost everyday I was up there. I also went fishing and caught my first fish. We ate tons of my favorite, Lobster.

Me, Heading out to the boat, to go fishing.

Me, Heading out to the boat, to go fishing.

I'm so happy, I could kiss you!

I’m so happy, I could kiss you!

In September, I went to New York City for a Sebastian Pro Hair Show. I also had the opportunity to visit one of my favorite yarn shops Purl Soho.

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So that sums up my travel, I got around…

RUNNING: I ran a total of 7 races in 2012.

IMG_0547April 1, 2012, I ran the Cherry Blossom 10 miler in 1:29:26. 8:56 min mile.

April 6, 2012, I ran the Crystal City 5K in 26:26. 8:30 min mile.

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April 22, 2012, I ran the Parkway Classic in 1:28:05. 8:45 min mile.

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August 26, 2012 I ran the Annapolis 10 miler, in 1:33:23. 9:20 min mile.

L and I at the start of the ATM

L and I at the start of the ATM

October 21, 2012, I ran the Army 10 miler, in 1:30:16. 9:01 min mile.

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November 22, 2012 I ran the SOME Turkey Trot in 24:34. 7:54 min mile.

429524_10100868123605386_418749121_nDecember 1, 2012, I ran the Annapolis Half Marathon, in 1:51:21. 8:29 min mile.

By not running a full marathon in 2012, I was able to focus on running form. I began to experiment with a natural running shoe (Newton), and was able to successfully change my stride.

YOGA: Through out the year I was able to continue my Bikram yoga practice.

L and I at Bikram.

L and I at Bikram.

KNITTING: This year I knitted up a storm. I really began to think of knitting as a form of art. And now I have become a ‚Äúyarn snob,‚ÄĚ guilty of having an obsession with high quality yarn. I love natural fibers such as merino wool, alpaca, cashmere, mohair, angora, silk, cotton, and linen. Here are some of my favorite projects of 2012.

tumblr_m9sw1h1KQo1rrnjzco2_1280In March, I made a yoga bag.

IMG_0562In April, I finished my first Sweater.

bandana cowl

bandana cowl

White Caps Cowl

White Caps Cowl

15112_10100860364479736_778132713_nI hand knit the Super Soft Fluted Cowl.

my latest Chunky Knit!  Hand knit by me.

my latest Chunky Knit! Hand knit by me.

I hand knit the herringbone cowl.

150626_10100912681930146_132839178_nMy latest piece. My second sweater. The Short Row Sweater. Pattern by Purl Bee. Yarn from Purl Soho. Hand knitted by me.

HAIR & Photo Work: I did three photo shoots.

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© 2012 Do NOT use photos

© 2012
Do NOT use photos

© 2012 Do NOT use photo!

© 2012 Do NOT use photo!

© 2012 DO NOT USE PHOTO!

© 2012 DO NOT USE PHOTO!

At the end of May 2012, last but not least, and the most exciting thing of all is that my boyfriend and I moved into our very first home! We are home owners.

So as you can see 2012 was a very busy year for me, full of exploring new places, learning new things, and challenging my body to its ultimate fitness level. Now, that I looked back, I can move forward. I am very excited about 2013, but topping 2012 will be hard to do.

Questions for you…

  1. Does looking back help you move forward?
  2. What was your most exciting thing that happened to you in 2012?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

 

 

Motivation Monday- Lolo

If this doesn’t inspire you… then I don’t know what will.

Last year, her story made headlines…

Meet Lauren Scruggs. Her friends and family call her Lolo.¬†She is a model and fashion blogger.¬†She is a daughter and a twin sister. ¬† One night, last year, accompanied by her mother, she went on a short small plane ride to see holiday lights, light up Dallas, from a bird’s eye view. When exiting the plane she walked into the night, and accidently hit the plane’s spinning propeller. She lost her left eye and her left hand, but God spared her life.

Doctor’s told her loosing a hand is like loosing a family member because it has always been with you. But now look what she is doing…

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Look at this strong woman! She isn’t just recovering from an accident that could have easily taken her life, but she is living, thriving, and doing push ups. She is thankful everyday, and adapting to her new body. So next time when you are exercising and feel like giving up… think of Lolo. ¬†Why? Because she is doing it beautifully and one handed.

armsBoth this one, and the above photo were found in People magazine. I am totally amazed by today’s technology. Lauren not only has a¬†prosthetic eye, but she has multiple¬†prosthetic arms. She chooses which one to wear depending on what activity she is doing. Because Lolo is so athletic, she has one for swimming, and another for other physical activities. She also has one for everyday use. This one looks almost as natural as a regular real human arm.¬†

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To learn more about Lauren Scruggs read her book Still Lolo or check out her blog Lolo Magazine. Guess what? She also has a wordpress blog, follow her at LOLO.

© 2012 sweatdaily

 

Breathe. Relax. Appreciate.

I finally found time today, around 8 pm, to sit down. This has been a nonstop busy day, week, month, year. Life, my body, started to be painful and exhausting. After so many busy days in a row I finally was able to squeeze in a night time run, since my long run on friday. Although, it was just a short, fast, easy 5k – it felt amazing. It was just what my body needed. I usually don’t run at night, but tonight I did and it was peaceful.

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In the morning, I will be running a turkey trot. It is a Thanksgiving tradition for my sister and I.

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I will be wearing my new socks. I can’t wait to try these out.

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I am looking forward for the next three days off to just relax, breathe, appreciate.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Surfing is Sexy

Surfing is a sexy sport.

It has always been a sport I have wanted to try.

I love the ocean.

I love the beach.

I found some amazing photos of surfing on tumblr…

These photos made made me think…

I love running… but I have been so consumed with it lately, that I haven’t had much time to get involved in any other types of physical activities. However, my running season is starting to wind down. I only have two more races, my last race being the Annapolis Half scheduled for December 1st, and although I will continue to run through out the winter, I won’t be training for anything until early March.

Hopefully, this will leave me more time to do…

Yoga

I like the style of Bikram, and during the colder months of winter, my body wakes up craving it.

Hiking

My sister and are planning a hike on Black Friday. It will be so refreshing to be out in nature breathing in the fresh air burning off the Thanksgiving dinner we had the night before.

Boxing

I have yet to try Boxing. I had written a post about it a month ago, but something came up and I ended up not having the chance to go. But it has still been on my mind, and I am looking forward to trying it. Read about Why I need a Punching Bag here.

Cycling

I use to ride a couple times a week, sometimes riding my bike to and from work. But I haven’t been on it in the last couple months. So it would be nice to dust off my road bike, and ride a couple times a month. It is great for cross training and a wonderful workout.

Chrissie Wellington Ironman World Champion 2011

Rock Climbing

Again this is something that I have yet to try. But it has been on my mind. I think it will be a great full body workout.

CrossFit and Weight Lifting

I have yet to try Cross Fit but it is a must. A couple months ago, I ended up at the Mid Atlantic Crossfit Games. It was a true inspiration. I need to try ¬†CrossFit, and if I can’t afford to join, I may just work on weight lifting. But either way. I need to get my body strong. It is important for injury prevention and it will make me feel better at work. I am a hairstylist on my feet all day, and it can be very tiresome. Read about the Mid Atlantic Crossfit Games here.

CrossFit

Barre

I’ve tried Pilates. I use to practice on the reformer. Honestly, it just wasn’t intense enough for me. I have thought about trying Barre because it incorporate ballet like moves to help strengthen the body.

This photo reminds me of a combo of boxing and barre.

Snowboarding

Last but not least. I am praying for some snow this winter so I can get on my board. I love weekend getaways to the mountains.

So those are the other activities I have on my mind. I know that in the end, by incorporating some other activities I will build more muscle, become stronger, and overall improve my running.

Because at the end of the day I always end up with a desire to go for a run.

*None of these photos are mine. All were found on tumblr.

© 2012 sweatdaily.