Fitness Friday!

Hey all! 

I’ve stocked up on my Fitness Friday articles and workouts so I’ll have plenty to share while I’m out drinking eating running my way through Europe! And of course I’ll be playing plenty of bass. But here are today’s picks coming to you LIVE while I lay on the ground pretending to stretch after my run… (I promise I’ll do my yoga later!)

YOGA 

As a musician and someone who has had surgery on both wrists I love this – especially for difficult balance poses like crow! How to protect your wrists in yoga!

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WORKOUTS 

Another great workout from Pumps & Iron for stairs/stadiums – think they’ll let me do this workout in the Colosseum?! 

I haven’t tried many but I love the concept of these 30 minute video workouts – Bikini Workout from FitSugar

RUNNING

Here’s an AMAZING plethora of motivational posters from Runner’s World… I have to share but I will probably be using some of these again and again! 

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MOTIVATION 

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Mileage – 7.15 miles, Yoga for Runners, foam roll 

QOD – Running should be a lifelong activity. Approach it patiently and intelligently, and it will reward you for a long, long time.

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Pressed Juicery Cleanse Recap!

Over the past 5 days I’ve been pre-cleansing, cleansing, and post-cleansing with Pressed Juicery‘s 1-day Cleanse 2. Overall I have to say I absolutely loved it. The cleanse itself was on Wednesday and I spent the 3 days before and the 2 days after prepping for and coming out of the cleanse according to their instructions. I was vegetarian from Friday to Friday only eating fish for the first time in that week last night for dinner. I ate quite a bit of broth throughout the week and some other juices for meals.

Cutting caffeine cold turkey was probably the hardest part. I normally drink two mugs of green tea every morning so I tried to wean myself off by only drinking 1 cup of green tea on Friday and Saturday. Since last Sunday I haven’t had a single drop of tea with caffeine and I’ve felt great every day so far. I also cut alcohol which isn’t hard for me on weekdays but sometimes on the weekends it’s more difficult when my friends and I go out. Last night I had a sip to sample 2 of Ben’s beers but I didn’t get anything for myself which is huge for me at a bar because if I don’t want to drink I will just stay in – I don’t stand up well to peer pressure. 

The juices for the cleanse on Wednesday were SO delicious. I really loved my Root 3 juice with the beet and ginger and the Citrus 2. I have to say I’ve always been a little scared of green juices because despite flavors that sound good I was never sure about the texture but all of the ones I had were delicious. I loved the apple and cucumber hints in the green juices. The almond vanilla drink was really good but I wish I had stuck it in the freezer for a few minutes to thicken it up perhaps because it was a little thin after traveling around all evening in an ice packed lunchbox. My least favorite things were the aloe and chlorophyll waters – just a tinge of funny after taste to the water. 

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I was never tired and almost was less hungry than I usually am midday after orchestra rehearsal. I picked a great day to do the cleanse because I was really busy and juices are the easiest meals out there. Grab, drink, go. I would definitely try the 3 day cleanse if I had the money to do so. I only did my Yoga for Runner’s video the day of my cleanse for time and because I didn’t want to push my body too hard the first time I was cleansing and it was fine for me. 

Speaking of the price – I personally thought it was a great deal because shipping was included. For 72 dollars for the 1 day I received 6 juices which is a little more than $10 a bottle. I added the 2 waters for another $7. However when the cost of shipping a fairly heavy refrigerated box immediately over night is included in the $79 I thought it was a pretty good deal. Theoretically you could do it on your own cheaper, however you have to own a juicer (which despite my considerings I do not) and you have to have the time to make all the juices and clean the juicer a million times. 

I didn’t do the cleanse for weight loss but for those who are curious I lost 2.2 lbs the day of the cleanse, but by this morning I’ve gained 1.4lbs – it is definitely primarily water weight for a 1 or 3 day cleanse. 

Mileage – 7miles, Yoga for Runners 

QOD – We run, not because we think it is doing us good, but because we enjoy it and cannot help ourselves…The more restricted our society and work become, the more necessary it will be to find some outlet for this craving for freedom. No one can say, ‘You must not run faster than this, or jump higher than that.’ The human spirit is indomitable.

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Wonderpot Recipes and 1 week Vegetarian!

This past week at school has been insane – tons of concerts, recitals, my recital hearing, a presentation, short paper, long paper, etc. So I really haven’t had much time to blog. However I managed to sneak in 2 nice and fast runs, my final workout with Camp Gladiator, and a yoga session during my weekdays so all was not lost! 

I tried a great new “wonder pot” recipe – which if you follow the recipe is vegan and all cooked in one pot! YES! I hate doing dishes! It was a spinach and artichoke pasta and the sauce came entirely from simmering and cooking down some vegetable broth – it was really flavorful! My version wasn’t vegan because I didn’t use any mushrooms since Ben and I don’t like them and threw some chunks of chicken breast on top. But it would be just as good without the chicken, it was so cheap and easy to make and super delicious. It is definitely going on the “go-to” tried and loved recipe board I have on Pintrest. 

While I managed to jump start my weight loss this semester I’ve gotten stuck at the same number for about 2 weeks now so I’ve decided to make a change this week and try something totally new! This week I’m going vegetarian and on Wednesday I will be doing a 1 day juice cleanse I purchased from Pressed Juicery! I read SarahFit’s review of the 3 day cleanse and I was mostly interested because some of the juices sound so delicious! I initially wanted to try the 3 day, but I’ve never done a cleanse before and I just couldn’t quite afford the 3 day right now. Considering how they deliver the juices and the fact that the S&H is included in the price I think the cost is incredibly reasonable and I can’t wait to try it and let you all know about my experience!

Mileage – 6.3miles, Yoga for Runners, foam roller

QOD -If you want something done, ask a busy person to do it. The more things you do, the more you can do.
realfoodriserun

Weight Loss Rights vs Wrongs

Apparently my hard drive crashed on Tuesday despite my computer screen showing that the hard drive was fine. It will be repaired FO FREE! but I won’t get it back until tomorrow afternoon – Oh the horror of being without my laptop for 2 days (that was sarcasm). 

One of my FAVORITE bloggers Monica over at Run, Eat, Repeat wrote this great post on concentrating on the rights of weight loss and healthy habits rather than the wrongs. I want to go run a race in California just so I can meet Monica – I seriously love her blog, all her advice, and her hilarious sense of humor. 

She encouraged people to think about the things they do right when it comes to weight loss rather than focusing the things that they might have messed up on. And she’s dead on in saying we love to focus on the negatives. My usual thoughts when it comes to my weight loss habits: 
“I didn’t work out hard enough today and I still got frozen yogurt. That was dumb. ” 
“I drank alcohol, there goes all my hard work” 
“I can’t eat any sweets until this weekend *proceeds to stare at the bag of chocolate chips meant for cookies and then fails and eats half the bag rather than a normal human portion*” 
“If I don’t count every calorie I won’t see progress” (when I miss one meal I fall off the bandwagon entirely) 

I know all of those thoughts are totally skewed. I love food, I think it is a great joy in life and a way of sharing culture, love, and community. However, I used to have a poor relationship with it because I abused it for a variety of reasons and ways. My relationship with food has finally gotten to a comfortable place for me over the past few months and I’m hoping to maintain that. So I’m going to share with you all the things that I think I do well when it comes to health and weight loss.  

1) I work out 5-6 days a week and I’m really proud of that because it means I’ve made it a priority in my ridiculous double master’s student schedule. 

2) I eat lots of fruits and vegetables. I love citrus, berries, and apples and I even force feed myself 1 banana almost everyday. I choose to eat spaghetti squash and I actually crave lettuce and broccoli sometimes. 

3) I don’t drink any soda. I don’t like the taste of soda (except Ginger Ale which conveniently isn’t very popular so I never ask for it) and so I drink almost exclusively water and herbal teas

oh…and alcohol…  

4) I make 80% of what I eat myself. I’ve really tried to devote myself to the 80/20 clean eating and I can really feel the negative difference internally when I eat out or indulge too much.

5) I eat breakfast everyday, no exceptions. I think this has greatly reduced the binge meals in my life and especially stabilized my eating on the weekend when I tend to swap focus for fun. 

6) This doesn’t relate to food, but I wear facial moisturizer with SPF 15 sunscreen everyday and I feel good about protecting my skin from the sun. 

What are your healthy habits that you’re proud of?? Share them with me! 

Mileage – CG workout, foam roller 

QOD – Be positive, patient, and persistent. 

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Recovery Week and Upcoming Recipes!

After the strenuous race on Saturday, this week has been a recovery week! And a fun past few days because I got to see the JMU Women’s Basketball team in the NCAA tournament in College Station, TX! While they lost in the 2nd round, they won their first NCAA tournament game since 1991 (which is before some of the team members were born!) and really gave A&M a run for their money in the 2nd round game. I was so excited to watch my favorite JMU sports team play live again and hear the Pep Band – proud alum right here! That band is always amazing and makes every opponents fans fall in love with them because they are THAT good. 

I did my Yoga for Runners on Sunday and Monday morning and Tuesday I did a CG workout. For the most part I actually felt pretty good on Tuesday. I think making sure I wear my compression socks, doing yoga, and foam rolling immediately following a long run makes a huge difference in how I feel after a rough long run. 

Today was supposed to be my first run since the race, but I’m truly exhausted. I’ve hardly slept the past 48 hours and I may have accidentally given myself food poisoning with a bad bag of lettuce….oops. And since it was raining and cold – I have no time to get sick, my recital is 1 month away! – I decided to take it easy today and just go hard tomorrow morning in my CG workout and get a run in on Friday which is my normal rest day. I definitely need to get a full night’s sleep the next few nights to get my body readjusted. I’m normally pretty serious about getting proper sleep (but sometimes it must be sacrificed)!

I missed Sunday Grubday, but tomorrow I HAVE to post this delicious recipe I pulled out of a magazine (probably years ago) and finally tried for the first time this week. Cajun “Sliders” with broiled red peppers. OH MAN. The recipe called for a mix of ground beef and ground turkey but I was sneaky and used 99% lean turkey and the meat seasoning did an amazing job of flavoring. Ben loved it and had no idea that it was ground turkey! I’ll also try to find a link to the delicious (and Weight Watchers) Tuscan sausage soup I’ve been eating for lunch this week.

Mileage – Rest day!

QOD – Some people train knowing they’re not working as hard as other people. I can’t fathom how they think. (Alberto Salazar)

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Bearathon – Half Marathon Recap!

Today I ran the Bearathon Half Marathon for the first time… and they don’t call it the “Toughest Half in Texas” for nothing. The hills start around mile 3 and get increasingly steeper and more strenuous over the next 7 or so miles. After that you find yourself suddenly flat and sad that you were deprived of your great downhill into the last flat 3.5 miles of the run. I know many readers are probably shocked that there are hills in Texas, and while most of Texas is REALLY flat, Cameron Park in Waco is far from flat. Here is a photo of the beautiful cliffs in the park that over look the river. 
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So as you can see there is definitely some height there. And if you don’t train for the hills your legs are going to be in for a surprise like mine were. I knew about 2 of the hills but I didn’t expect another 6 miles of it beyond those, which meant it was definitely the most difficult course I’ve ever run. I’ve done 3 other distance races in Texas that have been in “hilly areas” and none of them have had any hills that have compared to this race so I think it’s a qualified nickname. It’s not all horrible though – some of the run is very beautiful and I saw a lot of places that I didn’t even know EXISTED in my city. 

Overall I loved the vibe of the race! Despite a relatively small number of runners (1500 half, 800 5k runners) there were still A LOT of families, friends, and school organizations out on the course cheering people on, even between the aid stations which were at every mile. There aid stations were great, they had gels at miles 4, 6, and 10 I believe plus water and gatorade. I ran with Ben’s handheld water bottle because they were trying to encourage a cup free race and while I didn’t LOVE carrying the bottle at first I enjoyed being able to run around the stations and avoid the traffic of getting water. Most of the time the course was really wide and there was plenty of room at the start which is always nice. 

Ben was my “fan club” at my race today and I saw him just after the start, mile 1, and then he filmed my sprint to the finish. The race is a little tricky to follow along with as a spectator because quite a few major roads do get shut down for the race making it difficult to beat the runner you want to watch at the race to your next location. But it was nice to run a race again where I saw someone I knew afterwards – it was sad to just kinda wander alone after my last half when I went by myself. Ben even let me give him a gross hug! 
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One of the coolest parts of the race was seeing so many friends and fellow musicians out on the course with me!!! There were quite of few of us running the race today (for some it was their first half) and we managed to get just some of us together for a picture! 
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DESPITE the hills from Hell, I managed to squeak by and run a PR of 2:13:30, beating my previous time by 56 seconds. While I would have loved to have shaved off more time, I realized pretty early on that the hills were against me and I just wanted to finish strong (and uninjured to be honest). If I had trained better geographically my increased speed might have helped me a little more, but now I know how to train for the Waco marathon and the Bearathon next year (I mean I can’t say no to a student discounted race entry!). 

Mileage – 13.1, Yoga for Runner’s video (God help me), and slow painful foam rolling 

QOD – Running is all about having the desire to train and persevere until every fiber in your legs, mind, and heart is turned to steel. And when you’ve finally forged hard enough, you will have become the best runner you can be. And that’s all that you can ask for. (Paul Maurer) 

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Free Fitness Trials – Anyone Tried Camp Gladiator?

This week I found out that as a graduate student I was offered 1 free cycle/month with Camp Gladiator and decided to do some research. I’d never heard of the program before and read through the website as well as some other reviews online.

In a few minor concepts it reminds me of CrossFit but seems toned down in intensity, for example the most weights they recommend women lifting are 8-15lb hand weights – plus everything is done in a parking lot. What surprised me the most was the cost – despite being in parking lots with no access to showers, open gym times, or high quality equipment – a 6 month contract (you get unlimited classes) seems a bit pricey to me. Although like most gyms the longer your contract the cheaper it is. 

From a work out perspective, I haven’t gone yet – a friend who doesn’t work out regularly went and said it was a good workout but it didn’t scare her away either – I think I’m going to go on Thursday. However a lot of the reviews online about the trainers and workouts themselves are really great. Most people only complain about the financial difficulties they have with the company. I’m intrigued to see how much it pushes me and I’m willing to give it a shot because it’s free, I don’t have CrossFit anymore, and I’ll have just finished my half marathon so maybe some speed training to start my next race training will change things up for me. Because of the prices – even if I loved the class – I probably won’t continue beyond this month because as a broke college student I can’t afford anything right now. I was also a little sketched out by the number of reviews that say it’s really difficult to cancel your membership – I’ll have to investigate that further. I’ve got access to roads to run and the SLC for weights and since I’ve got plane tickets to Europe to save up for no extra fitness expenses for me right now. 

I’ve tried other gyms, not necessarily classes or programs, for free or highly discounted usually when visiting places or when I just moved to Texas and wasn’t officially a student yet. It gave me an interesting perspective on what I like at a gym and what I don’t. I used a free week trial at Gold’s and I also have been to Planet Fitness while visiting friends and I can’t say I LOVED either chain. I’m DEFINITELY more partial to Gold’s business plan, offerings, and overall experience, but they are pretty out of the way for me here in Texas and I would never drive that far to workout when I was so close to the campus gym. Planet Fitness on the other hand, kind of really offended me as someone who enjoys power and olympic lifting and training really hard – I felt entirely unwelcome there because I fit some of their “lunk” descriptions. 

Have any of you tried Camp Gladiator?? What are some fitness trends or classes I should try?! 

Mileage – upper body, abs, elliptical intervals, Yoga for Runners 

QOD – The best pace is a suicide pace, and today looks like a good day to die. (Pre) 

*Disclaimer – These are all my own opinions and reviews based on my own research and visits, this is not a sponsored post.*

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Waiting to Register for a Race

Tonight I registered for my 3rd half marathon….which is a week from today!!!! I know it seems crazy to wait until only a week before to register (especially since I would have saved a little cash) but I wanted to make bass playing my priority and if the running worked out then I would do the race. 

It is definitely hard to wait to register for a race however. So many races now have limits on participants, fill up quickly, or are even a lottery system. When I found out the Marine Corps Marathon went to a lottery system I was SO sad! The advantages to registering for races on registration day or far in advance are definitely good ones, for example:
– When traveling to a race it allows you to book plane tickets and hotel rooms that suit your schedule 
–  Plus you know exactly how much time you have to prepare for a race and possibly what the course will be like geographically 

Waiting can be a good decision also however, especially when you’re concerned about recovering from an injury or committing time to the proper training. When you’re a regular runner, but not a frequent racer, committing to a 5k, 10k or maybe a 10 miler may not be a big change in your overall lifestyle. But moving from shorter races to a full (or even a half maybe) for the first time effects so much of your life that it necessitates a big time commitment, so waiting it out to register might be a good idea. 

As a poor grad student registering early can save me money – and I totally get that – but waiting and finding a local race saves me more money in the long haul when I don’t need to save for gas. Thankfully this time around the waiting paid off and I was able to practice plenty and still get a good amount of long runs and a taper in before the race. Do I think I will reach my sub 2:00:00 goal on this race? Probably not because I know the hills will throw me some curve balls. BUT I have been running pretty fast lately so I’m hoping for another PR! So here’s to positivity and my last taper long run tomorrow and some great speed and relaxation workouts this week. Time to get my head in the game! 

Mileage – At home CrossFit, Yoga for Runners

QOD – Once you’re beat mentally, you might as well not even go to the starting line. 

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Musical Musings

While my musical postings are much less frequent than my fitness postings on my blog, music absorbs a good 80% of my life. I spend most days surrounded by music –  practicing it, taking classes on it, studying it in books or scores, listening to it for school, and even in my free time I’m listening it to my own enjoyment.  Music really is just as important to me as breathing, water, and eating. 
 
Recently I’ve started working with a therapist to work on my severe performance anxiety and some of my OCD habits attached to my playing and it has made a huge difference. Yesterday I had a really big breakthrough in therapy but I didn’t realize it until I had my lesson and everything positive in my playing was magnified by 5. I think the thing I learned was that I was being too cautious and scared when I played.  BASICALLY, I was so concerned with playing everything right and giving a “good” performance that I was playing timidly and cautiously which was hurting me in the end. 
 
I also figured out the reason that I have such a clear mind when I run is because I’m focusing my energy on other things like my legs, or how I’m swinging my arms. Sometimes I get lost in my thoughts, but when I’m on a good focused run I realize I don’t think about much else besides enjoying the run (I can do it with other workouts too but running is obviously my favorite). And I have to work on translating that concept to my playing so I’m just thinking about enjoying and playing the music rather than the results of my playing, judgement of others, or potential for failure. I’m not afraid of failing in running because I do it for my own personal enjoyment and no one else has any say in my running. Once again my running and music habits collide – it happens all the time. 

I also have to learn how to get rid of extra thoughts during yoga, I am still easily distracted by worries, cares, and distractions while I practice yoga.

 
In food news yesterday was Fat Tuesday and for some reason I planned on having salmon but that’s okay, I still indulged a bit because we had BBQ salmon burgers (yum) I even bought us some nice fancy rolls, had some nice wine, AND we got some FroYo for dessert. FroYo is the bomb – seriously it is probably one of the best dessert vehicles ever. I mean you can top it with fruit, candy, cake bits, brownie bits, sauces. Uhm yeah, it’s delicious. 
 
I’m so excited to see the temperatures rising this week because I’ve had enough treadmill for one week and I’ve only gone on it once! 
 
Mileage – 4 miles, Yoga for Runners 

QOD – Music in the soul can be heard by the universe.
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Sunday Grubday

Today is a music packed day (gig, practice, rehearse, perform, watch a friend’s recital) BUT I’m glad to be back on a Sunday Grubday!! My computer is working alright…for now…I’ve still got some work to do on it but for now I can get the important things done. 

The cold front and bad weather hitting everywhere else has settled on Texas today, I read that it is going to get down to a chilly 19 degrees tonight! I have a feeling I’ll be doing my recovery run on the treadmill tonight – at least it’s not very far and I got the long run done in the warm but cloudy weather yesterday morning. 

As I was looking at my calendar, pintrest boards, and meal planner this morning I realized that Lent begins this week, which means no meat on Fridays. That along with concerts, tests, a festival, and a few other crazy things made meal planning for this week a little troublesome but I got it all figured out. Lent aside, there will be lots of seafood this week since my alone dinners will be shrimp and avocado salads and when Ben joins me we’ll be eating BBQ salmon cakes! The new recipe for this week is Italian Crock Pot Soup which I will be making for most of my lunches this week. I’m making my soup without the ground turkey and just using sausage because I don’t want to spend the extra money on 2 meats. 

I’m so looking forward to next week because it is SPRING BREAK. I will get more time to cook so everything doesn’t have to be crockpot/1 pot/3 ingredient type recipes – which means I will have some delicious new recipes to share! 

Stay WARM everybody! 

Mileage – 3 miles 

QOD – Time and health are two precious assets that we don’t recognize and appreciate until they have been depleted.
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