My uncle said something this past week when I was in Oklahoma that really rang true for me. It’s going to seem common sense so, bear with me. But if you don’t see the need, finding motivation to workout is darn near impossible. Lately even though I haven’t been as toned as I like, I’ve actually been losing weight and still able to be active and start hiking etc. There wasn’t a physical need for me to prioritize gym time. I guess that’s where my reflection about motivation comes in. I need to remember sometimes that I don’t work out to stay a certain size (though it’s a plus), I workout because I feel so much better and confident about myself when I do. I hate hearing people call me a toothpick or look at my pictures from last year when I was training all the time and ask what happened but it’s not even about that… It’s about making myself proud and doing what I love. I love working out, I love researching new workouts and trying new recipes and the boost I feel when I am really living clean.
So with the fire lit again, here we go!
Jake Zapata Photography
Leg workout from today:
- 2 sets of 20 lateral squat walks with resistance band
- 3 sets of 12 hip extensions with ankle weights
- 1 x 20 lying adductions
- 2 x 20 squats
- 3 x 12 lunges/leg
- 2 x 20 wood-chop sumo squats (Stand with your feet wide apart, toes turned slightly out. Hold the dumbbell or medicine ball with both hands in front of you arms extended. Squat as low as you can and then as you stand swing your arms (keeping them straight) above your head. As you come back into a squat, lower your arms)
- 1 min plank
- 45 min walking miss Maia 😉
**I used lighter weights than I used to! Remember when you’re working back into a fitness routine after injury or time off you need to be smart about it so you don’t over train and/or hurt yourself.
And here’s just a couple progress pictures to mark the re-start, the biggest loss has been my abs:
While this week has no real meaning to my blogging timeline, it has a huge meaning to my “real life” timeline. One year ago Sunday, on a very cold day in MN, hubby and I said “I do” in front of so many of our friends and family. As cliche as it is I do love him more than I did that day and I can honestly say, and I think it probably shows in my writing, my priorities have changed in the past year. I still love fitness and strive everyday to live a healthy and inspiring lifestyle, but I’ve been trying to find a balanced life. Unfortunately, for now, it meant not making a fitness competition a priority but I have been able to do so many other amazing things!
We’ve literally moved around the world and back, I started a personal training business in Japan (which I loved), I’m now 3 months in to an awesome ER job, and I’ve been able to spend a lot more time with family over the past year. Even as I write this I’m in Oklahoma visiting my grandmother and uncle. …not too bad for 365 days.
All of this makes me wonder, what inspires you? For me, it’s my family. I want to be healthy and live a lifestyle that I can teach my kids (whenever that time comes). I want to be proud of what I see in the mirror everyday and if I can inspire even one person, that’s even better.
Toasting on the Eiffel Tower
Those of you who have been following for some time probably know my not so secret addiction… coffee. I started drinking some version of sugar, cream and coffee as a little girl when I visited my grandparents which has since progressed to at least two cups a day, usually more. These days I don’t use any sugar but, heck, we even took wedding pictures at a favorite coffee shop and I don’t think anyone other than our photographer was surprised by the request.
Erica Loeks Photography
Erica Loeks Photography
And, like any good addict, anytime a new article comes out with benefits of coffee I hold to it like Maia (our Cane Corso) to her favorite squirrel toy. Today’s article even states it makes you a better athlete– I think most of us already knew it can boost a workout. For the win:
11 Reasons You Should Drink Coffee Everyday
Life just never seems to settle down. There is no “I’ll start working out when I have time”… you’d never start! The past couple weeks have been a strong reminder of this for me. Working a rotating schedule and getting sick on top of family commitments, seeing friends, taking care of the dog/getting her into training, and buying the new house has made free time seem all but non-existent.
Maia ensures that at the very least I get in 30 min of cardio a day and on my days off she gets much longer walks on top of my resistance training. So yesterday I took her on a “doggy play date” and we went on a 2 hour walk on the Mount Vernon Trail. It makes cardio much more enjoyable when I have a companion 😉
Today I had physical therapy and am going to take her for a walk. I think because of the changing temps. and traveling etc, my pain is a bit higher than normal so my strength training will be abs/core. With all the walking and my PT exercises I’ve at least kept my legs toned but I know I’ve lost some strength which is frustrating. On the plus side I have lost a couple pounds despite my less than perfect diet lately.
All of this brings me to point and my latest fitness goal. I need to find the balance between cardio and strength training. I need to start mixing up my workouts again. With working full time and settling into a routine with Maia, My at home workouts have become routine also and just aren’t cutting it anymore. Especially as the weather will be getting cooler and there will be months where 2 hour walks just aren’t going to happen, sweaters aren’t an excuse to give up the “summer body”… time to start mixing up workouts and even if it means Maia only gets 45 min of walking a day, I need to take 30-45 to get to the gym and add back in heavier weights.
***For those non gym-rats, I do think it’s important when talking about “no excuses” to point out that there are SO MANY non gym workouts you can do! Walking/running with my dog is great exercise. Rock climbing as a date, awesome workout. Playing frisbee in these last warm days, Skiing with the winter coming up… you get the idea, just move and mix it up!
I realize it’s been a long time since posting any recipes… sorry about that! Tonight I wanted to make something “fall-ish” for dinner; I already had pork thawed out and didn’t want to have to go to the store. The result? Red Wine and Pear Pork.
- Pork Loin
- 1/2 C Red Wine (I just used Apothic Red)
- 1 large pear
- 1/2 C- 1 C onion
- 3/4 C water
- 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp ground ginger
- 1 tbsp rosemary
- salt and pepper to taste
- olive oil
- Mix together vinegar and honey
- Dip pork in mixture and place in skillet with 1 tbsp olive oil
- Sprinkle salt and pepper on both sides of pork (to taste), allow to sit at room temp. while you prepare the sauce
- Add wine, water, and spices to remaining vinegar/honey
- Chop onion and pear and add into sauce
- Cook pork on medium-high heat, approx 3-5 min/side
- Pour pear/wine sauce into sauce pan and bring to a vigorous boil while the pork cooks
- Once the pork has been seared on each side, add the sauce into the skillet
- Simmer another 5 min or until pork is cooked
On Saturday hubby and I really wanted to go hiking since I finally got the okay but all the national parks are closed because of the government shut down. I asked for some good places on Facebook and discovered a state park within a reasonable drive, it was a bit crowded (probably because people’s choices were limited) but it was great to be able to start hiking again! The best news? My ankle was very fatigued (just that feeling you get when you’re doing high reps… that burning and then just so sore) but not painful.
We brought miss Maia with us and while she was pulling a lot of the time (we’re still working on leash manners) because of other dogs she did pretty well.
I worked Sunday and then yesterday I woke up feeling sick so, other than physical therapy, took the day off. Still not feeling 100% so it’ll be a light day today but it feels great to be getting back into the swing of things and starting to get back to normal activities.
As most of you know, I’ve been rehabbing an ankle injury for over a year now. Basically for a year I haven’t been able to run or kick-box or any of my other “non gym” workouts and even my gym workouts had been limited. But last night at my re-eval my physical therapist FINALLY moved me down to once a week PT and said I can slowly start adding in old activities to see how the ankle tolerates them including adding in running instead of just jogging on the treadmill. It’s still going to be a slow process because I can only add in 1/week and I have to keep doing my therapy exercises at home but, she thinks it’s just going to take time for the muscles to readjust to holding the ankle in the proper alignment and the discomfort and pain will continue to gradually go away.
On the down side I still have to go twice a week because they have to work on my core stabilization from an old back injury but, at least that one doesn’t come with limitations and will hopefully provide some relief from a chronic issue. In honor of my progress hubby and I are going to try to find somewhere nearby to go hiking this weekend! Something we haven’t been able to do since our honeymoon (and even then I had to take a tram thing back down the mountain :-/)
I was on night shift the past two weeks so slept in today to catch up on sleep and switch back over to days and then took miss Maia on her walk, I’ve been adding in short spurts of running with her so that was a great way sneak in some cardio and wake up. Today I have my physical therapy exercises, so a mini leg workout, and then a short abs workout.
2 sets of:
- 1 min plank
- 1 min side planks (30 sec/side)
- 20 crunches
3 sets of:
- 20 Russian Twists/side with medicine ball (you can do this without the ball if you’re at home)
- 20 reverse crunches
- 20 toe touches