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

Do you remember that day when you became “a runner”?

Runners come in all shapes and sizes, really the variety is endless. And after running the Nike Women’s Half Marathon, this idea, became true to me more than ever.

Do you remember the day when you became “a runner”?

Running has always been a part of my life, because my Dad is a marathon runner. Every year he would run Marine Corps Marathon, and we would go along the race course to cheer him on. We made our traditional sign, that said, “Go Papa, GO!” It was a simple poster board, taped to a yard stick ruler.

Growing up, I played tons of sports. I pretty much tried them all, but wasn’t necessarily good at all of them. In high school, I played tennis on my school’s team. As a tennis player, the only running we did, were “suicides” on the court. This consisted of sprinting to and from the different lines on the court. The idea was to quicken our step and improve our footwork. And although, I played tennis all year, I tried track during the winter, thinking it would be a good sport to keep me conditioned during my off season. I went to one practice, and decided running wasn’t for me – boy was I wrong.

I began working out at the YMCA when I was a junior in high school. My older sister, E Рwho is 2 years older than me, came home from college and inspired me to hit the gym with her. My gym sessions consisted of 30 minutes on the elliptical machine. She on the other hand, chose to run on the treadmill. A couple times of week, I would do additional cardio on the stationary bike, and sometimes together we would venture out and do a couple of the weight machines. It is funny how people grow and change.  (Now I am a marathon runner, in love with lifting heavy preferably free weights.)

Meanwhile my little sister would swim in the pool or play some basketball at the indoor basketball court. My dad, who was a serious marathon runner, had taken on training for triathlons so he too would be lifting weights, or swimming laps. The YMCA became a family outing, that happened several times a week, even my mom lifted weights occasionally.

In 2007, my sister, E, decided to sign up for her first half marathon, the Virginia Beach Rock N Roll Half Marathon. She would train during the brutally hot summer, with her friend Jen, and they would run it on Labor Day weekend. It was then that she became a “real” runner. She retired her sneakers, for real running shoes, that were fitted for her at a local running store. She realized that Soffe gym shorts and cotton t-shirts made her chafe and the wrong socks gave her blisters. She discovered body glide, and jelly belly sports beans. And she taught me all of this.

Soon I became intrigued. I on the other hand, had switched gyms from the good old YMCA to Washington Sports Club. While enrolling for my membership I got a personal trainer for 5 sessions. She switched me from the elliptical machine to the treadmill.

The treadmill, for me was much harder than the elliptical. I began by warming up for 5 minutes. Then I would do the walk/run method. I would run a mile, and then walk for two minutes, run a mile, walk for two minutes, until I completed a 5K. As time progressed, so did I. Soon I realized I could run 2 miles straight, and no longer needed to walk. Then I cut my warm up time shorter. Then I brought my speed up, so I would be running faster. Soon I was running for the full amount of time. I would bring the incline up to keep my body guessing, and make it feel as much like running outside as I could.

I didn’t last long at Washington Sports Club. A new Golds Gym was opening up across the street and it had a more affordable membership, so I switched. Again I would hit the treadmill. The t-mills at this gym faced the windows so I had a clear view of outside. One day I was on the t-mill looking out the windows, on a beautiful spring day. It dawned on me, “Why am I inside right now, when I could be out there.” That is when I decided, I would never run again on the t-mill, unless it was an extreme weather condition, or I was doing HIIT, (High Intensity Interval Training.) It is actually hard for me to even consider my treadmill runs… real runs.

At this point, E, had been bragging to me about how amazing her half marathon experience was. It was then that I decided, if she can run a half marathon, then I can too. I immediately signed up for Cherry Blossom 10 miler and then the Zooma Half Marathon. Both races went so well, that I couldn’t wait to sign up for my next race. More half marathons, led to a trail half marathon, and then 2 full marathons.

Take time to click on the photos. They are really funny, and full of emotions!

As I ran more races, I began to realize each race definitely has it’s own energy. I find it so interesting how the vibe from one race can be so different from another race’s. It took me running three races around the same lengths, (two 10 milers, and one half marathon), in April to fully understand this.

I use to always get nervous before a race, but now races have become a fun way for me to set a goal, and train hard.  They are the ultimate reason why I can call myself a runner Рa marathon runner, who prefers to run long and far.

What kind of runner are you?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Passion and Dedication…

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Someone once asked me, “Why do you have to work out sooo much to feel attractive.”

I answered back, “I don’t! I work out, because I think it is fun!”

The truth is simple…

I love to run, and when it comes to running, I prefer to run long and far.

I love Bikram yoga, the constant struggle to prefect each pose. And when it comes to my yoga practice, I prefer it  sweltering hot.

Ever since I started the Livefit trainer, I have learned to love lifting. And when it come to this new found love, I prefer to lift heavy.

When it comes to my diet, I am a foodie. However, I love organic clean eating. I enjoy the challenge of cooking vegan and vegetarian recipes. People ask me, “How do you have time for all that.” It is simple I believe you are what you eat! And what I eat, is very important to me, so I make clean eating a priority. Also practice makes perfect, the more I meal prep the faster I become at it.

I will admit, I like to be extreme, and intense. I like to see how far I can push myself mentally, physically, and emotionally. Some people may find this annoying, obsessive, addictive, overly involved, but I am just simply passionate and dedicated.

It is that simple, and that is the truth.

© 2013 sweatdaily

The search for the perfect “brazilian” Bikini…

Spring has arrived.

I don’t know about you guys, but I have been experiencing some serious spring fever – meaning I am ready for things to heat up! Unfortunately, I wouldn’t say that Spring in the Washington, DC area is the best time of year here. The famous Cherry Blossoms have come and gone, and if you have never experienced spring allergies you will if you come here.

Anyway, last weekend I escaped the DC area, which was undergoing the winter/spring transition, and instead I headed down to Miami. It was there, in South Beach, that I got a sweet taste of summer.

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I am definitely a beach girl. And so far, I have had the privilege to visit some pretty amazing beaches, including ones in Brazil, Barcelona, Greece, Turkey, California, Martha’s Vineyard, etc, and now I can include South Beach, Miami to the list.644653_10101076014355656_2139329044_n

Because summer is approaching, the average women uses spring to become beach ready. Being a hairstylist, I advise my clients to start growing out their bangs, and add some sun-kissed highlights, to brighten and refresh their darker locks. Some people hit the gym, while others try the latest trendy diet, in order to shed those extra pounds they gained during their winter hibernation. Most longing to look fabulous in a bikini, this leads to the hunt to find the most flattering swimsuit.

It has been interesting visiting international beaches and comparing their people and beaches to our very own. When I was Barcelona, I was able to observe, Australians, French, Spaniards, Italians, Japanese, and many more. Then when I went to Brazil, I observed Brazilians, and while in Greece, the Greeks. I came to the conclusion that most Europeans and definitely all Brazilians, are more accepting and more confident regarding their bodies. French, Spaniards, and Italians, all go topless, regardless of their age or body type. The Brazilians, do not go topless, but they are known to wear teeny tiny bikini bottoms, (side note: not considered a thong.)  But the majority of Brazilians wear these tiny bikinis, even when their bottoms might not be.

As for me, I am an American, who always wears a brazilian bikini. I can thank my best friends for that one.  My bff is brazilian, who ever since we became friends  fourteen years ago,  she has been bringing me back brazilian bikinis, every time she visits brazil. In 2006, I finally was able to travel with her, to Brazil. And again we shopped for more brazilian bikinis. So as you can see, I have a pretty big collection, of these colorful, skimpy swim suits.

Purchasing bikinis in brazil is much more affordable, and it use to be impossible to find brazilian bikini companies that would ship to the USA. However, times have changed. Brazil’s economy is booming. And now some, not all, but some of the best brazilian swimwear is available to purchase online in American dollars.

So since I was heading to one of the sexiest beaches in the USA, South Beach, Miami, and because I have trained so hard doing the Livefit trainer, it was time to treat myself to a new brazilian bikini.

I was a little nervous purchasing a bikini online. But I felt safe going with one of my favorite brazilian bikini brands, Lenny. While I was in Brazil, I was lucky enough to have had purchased two of them, and knew exactly how they fit. (Side note:  Sizing is definitely different in Brazil.) Why was I so lucky? In Brazil, I was able to get two of these bikinis for a little over $100.00. Now, this brand is a major splurge, costing me a hefty $230.00 for my new bikini.

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So after I had purchased my Lenny bikini, I continued my search. Not because I was dissatisfied with my choice – I am actually in love with my new Lenny bikini and wore everyday while I was in Miami. But I continued my search simply because I was curious about what other brazilian bikini companies are available to the USA, and if I could find a new more affordable favorite.

During my search, I came across Midori Bikinis. This is a small company who makes affordable Brazilian Bikinis, and ships to the USA. They too were tired of paying $70 plus for 12 inches of material. They were founded on the believe that everyone deserves affordable high¬†quality swimwear. They have a variety of thong and brazilian bikini bottoms, including my favorite, the¬†“Kailua Classic.”

Our collection of unique Midori Brazilian Bikinis are especially designed for comfortable beach & surf wear. T‚Äčhey feature Extra Life Lycra which allow our suits to be¬†10x more durable than normal swimwear material¬†and¬†10x more resistant¬†to fadingA variety of skimpy backs provide some coverage- but by no means are they meant to hide those cheeks!” – quoted from their website.

Their website also says that Midori Bikini sells its own line of swimwear imported directly from Brazil and they ensure the highest quality.

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So let me give you some advice… I came across this company by searching the keyword brazilian bikini on INSTAGRAM. Yep, that is right, Instagram is not just for your own personal photos. It can also be used as a fabulous place to seek knowledge and discover new things. I highly advise you to follow this company Midori Bikinis on Instagram. By following them on Instagram you will be the first to receive updates about what they have in stock, and when they receive or upload new shipments of merchandise. Also, because this is a small company, but a fabulous one, when they upload their new merchandise it is gone quickly. And when I say quickly, I mean it. Do not wait a day. Trust me, with in hours all items become sold out.

I was lucky to be quick enough and was able to purchase two tops and one Kailua Classic bottom.  My total was under $100 for these three items. And to my surprise the delivery was quick, and they were waiting for me at my front door, way sooner than I expected Рa couple days.

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Another interesting thing that I realized when researching Brazilian bikinis was the models they choose to use. The models used for Brazilian bikini companies normally are curvier or more athletic. While the American companies that sell Brazilian bikinis use very skinny models. I remember seeing one bikini that when seeing it on a model chose by a Brazilian company, loving it. But then seeing the same bikini on a model chose by an American company and hating it. Ladies- Strong is the new Skinny.  See for yourself.

Brazilian Inspired –128 9

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American Inspired –¬†

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Questions for You…

  1. Which beach is your favorite?
  2. How are you preparing for spring/summer.

© 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

Livefit trainer, Progress pic…

Hey!! I have some EXCITING NEWS to tell you guys, but I am going to hold off until tomorrow… So stay tuned…

Today, I am going to talk about how I am doing on my livefit trainer…

I have completed day 53 of the Livefit trainer. Two more training days and I will be finished with week 8 and totally done with Phase 2. I am now not only feeling stronger, but starting to see some serious change in my upper body and in my core. (My legs have always been pretty strong because of running.)

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Anyway, this morning, I woke up and headed to the Gold’s gym that I regularly go to, and the power was out, so they were closing until the problem was fixed. My time is precious so I didn’t wait around. One of the perks of living in the Washington, DC area is that there is a Starbucks and Gold’s gym on every block. So I headed down to the next closest Gold’s.

What a different vibe…

This Gold’s was so much darker, and over packed with gym equipment. The benches were old, and so were the weights.

look at these Old School weights…

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Although, everything was older, my work out was still good. That is one of the positive things about lifting free weights. You don’t need to be picky. If the weight ¬†weighs 15 lbs, then the weight weighs 15 lbs, regardless if it is old or new.

Another thing that I loved about this Gold’s was because it was over crowded with equipment, the lifting area was more private, which was really nice. Even though, there were plenty of other people around, I felt like I was the only one in there. This privacy made me very focussed and it seemed peaceful – which is funny, because I was lifting heavy. Never thought weight lifting would be peaceful in anyway, but it was today.

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Along with this new found peace, I am also finding that I am really starting to love weigh lifting. ¬†It isn’t up there with running or yoga yet, but it is close behind them. I have come to the conclusion that I like sports that are simple. For example in running, all you really need is a good pair of shoes, and some runners will argue that you don’t even need that. Weight lifting is similar, in the way, that it is simple and you don’t need a bunch of stuff to see results.

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Anyway, in the end, I am happy I got the opportunity to try the other Golds. They are both by running trails too. This is a plus since I hate the treadmill, and love running outside right after I lift. They are also both near organic grocery stores and Starbucks. So I think I may alternate Gyms depending on my mood. Its good to keep things interesting and switch things up.

Tomorrow, is day 54, in which I am going to hit Legs hard. However, it is also my day off, so I might also squeeze in day 55, if I have time, and then go for a run. We shall see… but I know I am a total fitness junkie, because I am already getting excited about my tomorrow work outs. Hopefully, the weather man is right, and it will get warm this weekend, I really want to run in shorts.

I’m going to leave you with a progress pic…

Livefit trainer, Week 8, day 53

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Questions for You?

  1. What is your favorite body part to work out?
  2. Do you switch up your gyms, or gym routines?
  3. What work outs did you do today?

© 2013 sweatdaily

RUNNING under the sun and then through the snow.

“March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb…”

You may have heard the above quote time and time again. “March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb…” and in most places this is quite true – but not here in DC.

Last night my morning meeting was canceled do to the possibility of a wintery mix. You may be thinking, why… it is the end of March? But here in the DC area, having a disgusting mix of wet rain and snow in early spring is not shocking.

For some of you snow bunnies from up North, you may find my rant about 1 inch of snow annoying. But let me tell ya, I love snow, and would rather have a beautiful light dusting, or actually, bring it on I’ll take a blizzard, over this wet, dirty, already melting wintery mix.

Ever since I became a runner, 5 years ago, I have become very weather sensitive/picky. And every year, I take note, and remember quite vividly what the weather is like in late March through April. Why so obsessed? Because that is when my running season begins. That is when I start running my races, starting with the Cherry Blossom 10 miler, scheduled for the first weekend of April.

I love this race, however out of the five times I have run it, I have only run under the promised¬†canopy of Cherry Blossoms once. Most of the time, we will have a hot week, and the Cherry Blossom will bloom, and then we will have a cold week, where the wind will blow the blossoms away. ¬†So as you can see it is a roller coaster ride… when it comes to the weather around here.

So this is what I am talking about…

Is it spring?

Is it winter?

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Cherry Blossoms covered with wet snow…

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Ok… enough of that… Lets talk about Running…

This last week, I continued with my Livefit trainer, but I have also taken my half marathon training up a notch. Or in other words, I have been doing some serious runs. What do I mean by serious runs? Well, because this spring I am only doing races between 10 and 13.1 miles, my long runs are really not that long. Because I am a marathon runner, I don’t really consider anything below 10 miles a long run. ¬†With that being said, because I am training for the 10 – 13.1 mile races, so far my weekend long runs have been 6, 7, 8 (if that makes since.)

I also want to make a point, that no matter which distance you are running from 5k to 21 miler to ultra marathon, it is important to practice proper form. Even on the shortest runs, you can still have a serious, high quality workout.

Friday, 3/22

L and I went out on our 8 mile run. We ran south side of the MVT. It was a really great run, averaging a 9 min mile. It was cold but sunny. Good weather, happy runner!

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I ran a 4-5 mile loop, and did 5x hill repeats. I was averaging an 8:30 min mile. It was 55-60 degrees. I ran in shorts and a tshirt. It felt amazing. I thought spring was here… what a tease.

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Sunday, 3/24

L and I met up at 7:30 am to get a 4-5 mile run in before work. It felt really nice to wake up early and hit the trail. We ran the north side of MVT. I ran faster than ever, definitely averaged 8:30 min mile, sometimes running faster. Focused on short fast strides. ¬†Stopped to take this quick photo…

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Anyway, I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!

Questions for You…

  1. What types of runs did you do this weekend? Fast? Slow? Long? Short? Hills? Flat? Training? Races?
  2. Is it snowing where you are? Is it spring or winter?

© 2013 sweatdaily

LiveFit Trainer Update

I haven’t written a post on the Livefit trainer in over 2 weeks…

So here we go…

Today is day 48, which will also be my last day of week 7. I am more than half way through phase 2.

The differences between phase 1 and phase 2 is…

Basically, the program progressed by adding cardio into the mix during  phase 2, weeks 5, 6, 7, 8. This cardio consisted of a moderate 30 minute cardio session at a constant pace. Because phase 2 is still considered a building phase the weight I lift has gotten heavier, the reps increased, while the sets decreased. I am normally still resting for 1 minute in between each set, unless it is a superset. Some sets I lift to failure, while other sets are a dropped set.

Lets get that run on…

I am very happy that I am able to run again, however adding running along with the weight training has been very time consuming. If I complete my run on the treadmill, I normally spend between 1.5 – 2 hours in the gym. If I run outside then I am in the gym for 1 – 1.5 hours and then I hit the pavement running. So as you can see, I am in the gym a lot… and I hate the gym.

When I run on a treadmill, I feel like a hamster on a wheel…

To be totally honest, in the last 4 years, I have probably run on the treadmill 5 times each year, when it is a heat wave summer, and too dangerous to run outside. (I will not be one of those crazy runners, running in 110 degrees 90 percent humidity. Trust me I have done that before, and ended up in and out of the doctor’s for 3 months.)

But now, I am running on the treadmill, 1-2 times a week, and I hate it. The only reasons, I put myself through this treadmill running torture is because it saves me time, and I’m sick of the cold. It is the end of March and it has been in the 30s with gusty winds.

Anyway, I have been trying to make my treadmill runs interesting by putting up the incline slightly (1-2), and running at faster speeds, normally 8:30 min mile. I can deal with this because it is only 1-2 times a week. Hopefully, the sun will come out soon and I will be able to forget the treadmill for good.

As for outdoor running and half marathon training…

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I have been doing hill repeats, short easy runs, and some long runs on my weekends. But that is just another reason why the Livefit trainer seems time consuming. Along with trying to complete this trainer to the best of my ability, I am also training for 3 races, but the one I am really focused on is the NIKE WOMEN’S 13.1. This races is scheduled for the last weekend of April. So I have 6 weeks to get some serious running in. (I will write a separate post, and go in more detail about my training plan.)¬†

Weight training and results…

I will not post my progress pics quite yet. However, I will tell you this… In phase 2, I am lifting heavier because it is a requirement, but also because I am capable of it. I started this program with strong lean runners legs, but no upper body strength what-so-ever. During phase 1, I was lifting 5 lb dumbbells, now I am lifting 15 lb dumbbells. I was lifting a 20 lb bar, now I am lifting 30-40 lb bar. I was deadlifting with a 40 lb bar, now I am with a 60 lb bar. I am not only feeling stronger, but looking stronger too. I am not seeing bulky muscles, but rather a lot of lean muscle definition, which was my ultimate goal.

Abs, I knew you were there, but never saw you before… it is so nice to finally meet you!¬†

What I am probably most excited about, is that I am finally seeing a flatter stomach which is revealing some abs. This makes me excited, because the weakest part of my body has always been my core. Every expert runner has always told me a stronger core will help improve your running, and that is what I am hoping for.

The whole point of me doing the Livefit Trainer, was to get stronger, so I would improve my running, by being able to run stronger, further, faster. 

When I am out on the running trail, that is exactly how I feel, stronger and faster.

I also trust Jamie Eason. She has a video, that I posted earlier on my blog, about how you should train your abs like any other muscle group Рnot every day. She also said that while lifting free weights, most of the exercises engage your abs anyway. I have found this to be soooo true! 

Clean Eating…

In phase, 1 I struggled with clean eating, because I was having a hard time packing enough meals for the day. ¬†Now I have this…

MOMS


Above is a picture of my lunch box. I found it at MOM’s Organic Market. I like it because it fits all of my meals for the day, and it keeps everything cold. It is like carrying around a mini fridge.

Calorie Counting

In phase 2, it is required to start calorie counting. I am not very good at this, and I don’t do it all the time. But I am aware of how many calories I need. It is less on days that I lift upper-body. It is more when I lift lower-body, or go on longer runs.

A clean eating tip, that is introduced in phase 2, is measuring all ingredients. Because of this, it is suggested to purchase a kitchen scale.

scale

I really don’t see myself getting to particular about measuring and counting calories, but I will try my best while I am doing the Livefit trainer. ¬†So I purchased this Cuisinart kitchen scale. My food processor is a Cuisinart. I really like this brand. I haven’t used it yet, but I think it is going to be a good thing to have on hand in the kitchen. Plus all fitness models, and fitness competitors have their leanest results when the measure everything. So if you are trying to loose weight, or lean out, it might be a good thing to look into or purchase.

Supplements

In phase 2, it is suggested to take a digestive enzyme,¬†in addition to Protein powder, BCAAs, Glutamine, multivitamin, and fish oil/flax oil . So I purchased…

digestive

(I just bought these yesterday, so I will write a more detailed post about what the are and how they work, so stay tuned. )

So that is an overview of what I have been doing for the last 2 weeks, with the Livefit trainer, and my half marathon training… Stay tuned for shorter but more detailed posts, on long runs, and supplements.

Questions for You…

  1. Do you ever run on the treadmill?
  2. What is your favorite way to run on the treadmill?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Protein Shake Recipe!

Lets talk about clean eating…

As you all may know, I am currently doing the Livefit trainer by Jamie Eason. Besides the daily weight lifting and cardio sessions, Jamie Eason teaches us how to eat clean. Boy have I learned a lot! For those that are totally clueless, (don’t worry if you are, I was too at one point) she has a meal plan written out, along with grocery list, videos, and recipes… all on bodybuilding.com.

Here is what goes down…

  1. The meals consists of mainly a protein, complex carb, and healthy fat.
  2. Ideally, with in an hour of waking eat your first clean meal, then continue to eat 5-6 small clean meals a day in 3 hour intervals.
  3. Never workout on an empty stomach.
  4. Use measuring tools, such as a scale, to get exact portions.
  5. Use apps, such as fitness pal to record calories. It is important to get at least 1600-2000 calories in order to build muscle, (but it also depends on your size/BMR.)

When reading this reviews on this trainer, a lot of people claimed they were vegetarian and following the meal plan was impossible. But nothing is impossible.¬†If you are vegetarian or vegan, you should be getting the same amount of protein as someone who eats meat. I am not going to label myself as a vegetarian or vegan, but I do cook most of my meals meatless. I will eat eggs and fish, but for those who don’t…¬†Stop thinking that protein is animal flesh,¬†because it doesn’t have to be. ¬†You can sub, animal protein for many things example: beans, or lentils, and there are tons of vegetables that are a great protein source.

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I found these charts on google, while researching protein for you guys!

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Supplements

Along with a multivitamin, BCAA, and fish oil/flaxseed oil, Jamie Eason suggests we drink a protein shake. Research claims that if you drink a protein shake with in 30 minutes to an hour after exercise, you will see more muscle growth/recovery, and less soreness.

I have always been a very big fan of juicing. I will make a green juice a couple times of week and have been simply adding my protein powder to that. I actually started to grow my own kale in my vegetable garden because I use it so often. But right now during these cold months of winter, a lot of produce is not in season at the moment, so I have recently began playing around with different ingredients. I finally came up with this amazing protein shake.

Protein Shake Recipe

protein shake

I know it looks like a Starbucks coffee drink, but the reusable travel plastic cups work perfect for protein shakes.

Ingredients

  1. 1 banana, (really good source of potassium, which helps with muscle cramping.)
  2. Cacao powder (good source of antioxidants)
  3. Chocolate protein powder (I use Vega Sport because it is vegan, soy free, and created by an iron man athlete.)vega
  4. Wheat Germ (good source of antioxidants, vitamins, fiber, very good amount of protein, 27g per 115-gram serving.

    Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/2707-facts-health-benefits-wheat-germ/#ixzz2MtlCygsN

  5. Flax seeds (omega 3s)
  6. Coconut Water (good source of potassium, and hydrating)
  7. Spoon full of organic all natural peanut butter (make sure nothing is added. This is an additional source of protein and healthy fat.)

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This protein shake recipe is very high in protein, heathy fats, and potassium. It is also enriched with other vitamins, and omega 3s. I drink this to refuel after my workout, and use this as one of my my meals.

No need to waste calories on Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. It definitely satisfies my chocolate and peanut butter craving.

Question for You

  1. What is your favorite ingredient for a protein shake?
  2. What is your favorite protein powder?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

When do you workout? Morning or Night?

Livefit update…

Today, I completed Day 36 of the Livefit trainer. J and I hit the gym in the morning and today we focused mainly on back, although, we squeezed in some leg exercises too. I also got a little bit of cardio in.

Through this new fitness challenge, the Livefit trainer, I am not only seeing a difference in my fitness level, but I am learning a lot about myself.

Do you workout in the morning or at night?

I have definitely realized that by doing the Livefit trainer, I have my best workout sessions, early in the morning before work. It just feels really good waking up early, getting a great work out/run in, and then have my whole day ahead of me free to do whatever…

I find if I don’t get my morning work out/run in, I end up worrying about it the whole day, desperately wondering when I am going to fit it in. I also feel that if I don’t get a chance to lift and then find time to hit the weights at night, I end up being too tired to lift at my fullest potential. However, I can run or do bikram either in the am or pm.

Running or doing birkam in the morning, before work gives me energy for the rest of the day… it must be all of those endorphins, creating my runner’s high. When I run or do bikram at night, I feel like I relieve the stresses from the day. I find myself winding down, feeling relaxed, but refreshed.

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But when I have the choice to choose morning running/bikram or night, I will always choose morning.

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Getting my workouts in, in the morning also gives me the opportunity to do a double if I want to. Sometimes after work, at night, I feel  like it is necessary to blow off some stress, and although, I already worked out, another sweat session is in order.

Well whether, you run…

do yoga…

lift weights…

whether you are an early bird…

or a night owl…

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Questions for YOU?

  1. Do you workout in the morning or at night?
  2. Do you prefer running in the am or pm?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

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