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Human Connection

18 Aug

I look through my phone and have all these workouts I mean to post or new recipes I’ve made and yet for some reason I’ve been missing that step to actually post them. I apologize :-/

This weekend was pretty busy. Saturday I had some ladies over for brunch while hubby had to go into work and got a quick workout in with Yoga Meltdown. Yesterday I skipped the workout because we spent all afternoon landscaping the yard… moving that many bricks and weeds was enough of a workout for my back! Hopefully just a couple more weekends and the yard make over will be done.

On the drive for a Home Depot run (one of many) hubby and I got to talking. I’m not sure why but lately the idea of human connection has been on my mind a lot. Probably part of why I’ve been spending less time online and posting. I’ve been thanked for doing things that, in my opinion, are what any decent human being would do. I’ve seen more and more people who seem to have forgotten how to be polite and on the news violence and shootings seems to be the norm. A doctor I work with wrote a post on a similar topic in The Story of Health and ended with the sentence that he has been a sleepwalker in a sleepwalking society. I think that’s when it hit me. We’ve lost passion in our society. Not passion for sports or arguments… there’s plenty of that. Passion for each other. Respect for each other and each others’ lives. You hear stories of people being beaten and bystanders taking videos instead of helping. Is that the norm now? If so, how did it become that way?

By this point you’re probably wondering what this has to do with fitness and why I’m writing about it. If we have lost passion for each other, the passion for living, why would we expect people to be passionate about healthy living? I think part of what makes fitness so addicting (aside from the post work out highs and the confidence gains) is the fitness community. I’ve posted about it before but I don’t think I drew the same connection. This community is made of people who are fighting for something. Whether it’s a fight for weight loss or a fight to earn their place in a competition or just fighting to live the best life they can… those involved in the fitness community have usually found a passion for life.

So here’s my goal moving forward and what I challenge you to do. Spread that passion. Take the supportive environment in the gym and bring it outside. Hold the door open for someone, it’s the same amount of courtesy as taking your weight plates off a machine. Smile at your neighbor, it might be more encouraging than telling your gym partner they’ve had a great set. Just bring the passion and dedication we put into our workouts into the real world. Who knows, maybe it won’t change a thing, but maybe it will and maybe it will inspire people to seek out the healthy lifestyle. If you can inspire even one person to join our fight, it’s worth it right?

Cinque Terre hike in Italy

                                Cinque Terre hike in Italy

Gluten Free Italy

17 Jul

I am sorry I disappeared (again). But, we just got back from an amazing trip to Italy! When hubby and I first talked about going to Italy we were afraid I wouldn’t have anything to eat. After all, this is a country known for pasta and pizzas… What could possibly be gluten free? Turns out, everything.

Honestly it was easier to be gluten free there than it is in the states! In part because they recognize it as Celiac disease and not a fad diet (yes it will make me really really sick, no I don’t eat gluten free to stay thin). We had the best gluten free pastas I’ve ever had, delicious gluten free pizzas and even delicious gluten free cookies with macadamia filling from a street vendor by the Tiber in Rome.

gf pasta 1 GF pizza GF sandwich

It was AMAZING. If you’re planning on traveling to/around Italy, I suggest you learn one very important phrase… “Senza glutine” (without gluten/gluten-free). “Sono celiaco” is another good one but we had better luck with the first.

Now from a fitness point of view… We were bad. All that pasta and wine (and gelato) was certainly not in any diet plan. But we also walked everywhere and went hiking a couple days so, maybe it evened out? And if not, well, it’s a vacation and now back to the real world.

Where in the world is Fit and Busy?

23 Oct

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

Toasting on the Eiffel Tower

Travel, Travel, Travel, Fit?

26 Jun

Do you ever just look at your calendar and get a bit overwhelmed? I was trying to plan out my next couple weeks (before starting work) and realized it’s all already planned. I don’t have a single day where I don’t have something going on and I’ll be spending more time away from my apartment than at it… including driving ten hours home the day before I start work. I know once I start work and settle into a routine I’m going to miss being able to travel so much but right now, I’m looking forward to my 4 days at my apartment.

I think sometimes that’s why fitness becomes so important, it’s something that can be a constant with all the other craziness. Sure a new workout and diet fad is always around the corner but the solid principles remain the same.

In these busy times dinner sometimes becomes about whatever I can make quickly/easily. Something that has always been a staple growing up is so easy and Dad and I made it the other night…

You need:

…that’s it. Marinade the chicken and then grill it. So good yet so easy! Of course if you have time on a day off you could make the Italian dressing at home and just keep it on hand, but that is an adventure I haven’t tried yet. Serve with veggies (I like it with broccoli or asparagus) and you could top with an Italian salsa as pictured.

**not my pic.

Finally, as promised, here’s the modified leg workout from yesterday.

I didn’t use any weights other than for the deadlifts but I did use resistance bands.

2 sets of:

1 min balance drills (30 sec standing on one foot, 30 on the other)

3 Sets of:

2 sets of 20 seated kick outs/quad extensions (Normally I put an ankle weight on to add some resistance but since those are back home, I used a resistance band)

Settling In

19 Nov

I finally found the gym yesterday! We’re house sitting for friends who live on one of the bases so, it was the gym here. No frills but everything you need and then some for a workout. And my arms and shoulders are feeling it today!

I did a pyramid set for the first exercises and then back to just 3 sets of 12 for the second superset…

(Pyramid)

8 lateral shoulder raises

8 front shoulder raises

8 bicep curls

15 tricep dips

20 squats (no weight… the “legs” changed every set because I was working in my physical therapy exercises)

20 leg raises on a “Roman Chair Machine”

12 lateral shoulder raises

12 front

12 bicep

15 tricep dips

20 lunges/leg

20 leg raises

Finally, 20 of all of the above. As you increase reps, decrease the weight so you are doing your max weight for each number of reps.
12 Front Flys

12 Chest Press

12 Tricep pull-downs

20 calf-raises

*3 sets

Then I finished with alternating 20 weighted crunches (arms straight toward the ceiling) and 15 skull crushers for 3 sets.

Also, the hubby and I have been good about keeping healthy food in the house and making dinner fresh every night. Last night I went to check out one of the cheerleading teams on the island so he made a chicken with sauteed onions and brown rice. The night before I made apple spiced pork. To be fair, we have had a lot of baked goods in the house that people have sent and my self-control has been lacking with those since I’m home most days (so it’s a good thing I found that gym 😉 ).
And, just as a life in general update, we found somewhere to settle for the next few months until we know where we’re going next. We get the keys Saturday 🙂 I’m still trying to find a job/get a foot in the door at the hospital out here but so far, we’re making steady progress. I can’t complain about all the beaches though… it’s nice seeing the ocean every day.

 

Hello Again!

13 Nov

Oh man… what a month! The wedding was everything I could have asked for, the honeymoon was even better, and now I have moved to Japan! I have no car, we don’t really have a house yet, and… well, a lot of other unknowns but we’re here and I am trying to start a routine of some kind until we get more settled in.

We went to France for the honeymoon, it was wonderful! Ate lots of fondue (an easy gluten free option), had great (and some not so great) wine, and just toured around. Stayed active so I didn’t feel too bad about the food (and it was all SO fresh!) but I was ready to get back into a better diet by the time we got home.

We went up into the Alps (Chamonix, Mont Blanc) for a couple days and I have to say, I went on the hardest hike I think I’ve ever done. It was also the highest hike I’ve done to date (2317 meters at the top, lots of switchbacks)… and so worth it. The view from the top was awesome and I had a huge sense of accomplishment. Maybe misplaced, I’m sure people who hike all the time would laugh at it but hey, I was proud of myself. Here’s the view from the top… we had not been prepared for the snow so we ended up taking a tram back down.

Oh, and here’s me… running to the top because I was cold and really wanted hot chocolate:

 

Anyway, I got up with hubby this morning (his first day back at work) and made eggs and turkey bacon; I guess so far so good on the eating healthy out here? 😉 We’re house sitting for a friend so today I’m planning on taking their two dogs out, they both pull a lot so we’ll see how long the walk actually lasts, and then trying to find the gym on the base. I also plan on cooking a lot until I get settled in with a job here so hopefully that means new recipes for you guys too.