Sunday, February 23, 2014

This Scale Ain't Loyal!

The scale sucks. I'm pretty sure it hates me as much as I hate it lol...This week the scale wasn't my friend but its ok because I am REALLY noticing a difference in my body!! I'm seeing changes every week and it is boosting my confidence and really pushing me to work harder. 

This week I set the goal to workout 6x and I am proud to say that I attained it! And believe me it was a STRUGGLE. I worked long hours this week and didn't feel like going hard in the gym BUT I forced myself to go and I'm glad I did. The hardest part of this lifestyle isn't the workout, its actually getting yourself to go! I understand when people say that they have difficulty sticking to a weekly workout regimen. It's not easy but it is worth it when you start to see progress and results. 

I'm an addict. I am addicted to results! Recently I have noticed that my arms are firmer (there's no jiggly loose skin) and my face is slimmer. I think the only place I don't feel like I am losing weight are my thighs! This actually doesn't bug me because I like being thicky thick in that area lol...BUT I want them to be TONED and thick, not jiggly and thick lol...My focus for this upcoming week is to concentrate on my legs. I need to whip them into shape before the summer comes!

I spent most of the week working out in the gym due to time constraints. My workouts were early morning or late night because my schedule SUCKED. For the upcoming week I hope to incorporate some more outdoor workouts. I miss being outside! And there's something about a workout in the elements that can be twice as challenging as being in the gym. 

My Friday night and Saturday night were spent in the gym (which were completely empty by the way). As I kicked ass on the stair master I wondered, "Am I a loser for being here when other people are partying?" I low key began to feel kind of bad that while other's were "functioning" I was sweating it out in the gym. However, after my workout I was super glad that I went, weekend or no weekend. This journey requires a TON of commitment. Which means there are times that I am going to be in the gym while others are partying and I can't feel bad about that. I have to do what others wont so that I can have what others don't. I have goals to attain and I won't stop till I meet them. And technically even once I meet them I'm not stopping because its a journey not a destination!

SPOTLIGHT: Fitmiss Ignite Women's Pre-Workout

Last week I noticed that some of my night time workouts were lack luster in comparison to my day time workouts. Since I knew my upcoming week was going to be crazy I decided to purchase a "Pre workout". Pre-workouts are like a jolt of caffeine. They are supposed to help give you energy, increase calorie burn during exercise, and improve your focus. I had been using samples of several different pre workouts I got at the LA Fitness Expo but ran out! (This was fine because I didn't really like the ones I tried anyways) I did a TON of research online to find a good pre workout. Alot of the ones sold at GNC are made for men and not for women. They are often way to strong for our size and weight, and can cause water retention and weight gain. (Which is the complete opposite of why I'm using it!" For this reason I looked into several pre workouts made "just for women". Honestly, alot of those are just as crappy as the men's pre workouts. You really have to read the labels. Some of them were literally identical to the men's formula! (Meaning they just slapped a pretty label on it to market to women) They obviously think women are dumb and not going to read the ingredients. Well not this girl! After scouring the internet for several days I decided to try out Fitmiss Ignite. I read really great reviews on it and thought it was worth my money. Though you can purchase online at GNC and Vitamin World its kinda pricey at $37.99 for 28 servings. Instead I decided to purchase mine from amazon! I was able to get it for $22.00 with free shipping! (Always check amazon and eBay before your shell out cash for something) My box arrived on Friday and I was super stoked to try it out! Each of the servings comes in an easy to transport single serving package that you can dump into your water bottle. (I love the convenience of this) Compared to the other pre workouts I tried this one starts off really subtle. You don't feel this huge jolt of energy which at first concerned me because I didn't think it was working! lol..However, after 20 minutes on the stair master I noticed that I wasn't tired and had a ton of energy! I was able to push really hard during my workout and burned way more calories then I usually would. The best part is that it didn't make me feel nauseous, jittery, or itchy. (Crazy but most pre workouts do have these side effects). I got the orange flavor which is ok, honestly I'm not a huge fan of the taste but it doesn't matter because I drink it hella fast anyways just to get it down. At only 5 calories per serving it's worth drinking. Especially since you end up burning more calories! Long story short I really like this pre workout and will continue to use it! 

Disclaimer: What works for me may not work for you. I definitely suggest doing your own research and finding a product that fits you.

Have a great week everyone! 

<3 Bri

Monday, February 17, 2014

Workouts Be Goin up Like a Crescendo!

Not to pat myself on the back buuuuuut I was a beast this week! I am even more proud considering last week was kind of lack luster. This week I did a variety of different workouts at different intensities. Each one targeted different areas of my body and left me feeling sore! I decided to break down my workouts for the week to give you guys an idea of what I'm doing!

Day 1: Lifting/Weight Training/Leg Day
I haven't lifted in like 6 months so I shouldn't have expected to walk into the gym and be able to squat the same amount of weight I did before (185lbs) but being optimistic I thought I would. I was sadly mistaken lol...I feel so weak compared to what I was lifting before but I know its all about progression and rebuilding my strength. I'll be back to where I was in no time. 

Day 2: GYM
Now that my gym membership is back I love going! The best part is that I can go to the gym anytime! (Hallelujah for 24 Hour Fitness) I DETEST the treadmill but for this workout I decided to put that aside and run a mile as my warm up. My time was extremely slow but I intend to keep working to be able to run faster. After my mild warm up I did 20 minutes on the stair master and 20 minutes on the elliptical. 

Day 3: Bike Riding (Fixed Gear)
The weather continues to be amazing so I took my bike out on the beach and did a 27 mile ride! I love my bike and riding fixed gear enables me to get an even better workout. For those of you that are unfamiliar with bikes, a "fixed gear" or "fixie" is a bike where the wheel is set on continuous pedal. So whether you are going up hill or down hill you cannot take your feet off the pedals because they continue to move. (There is no coasting!) Alot of people find it difficult to ride their bikes on "fixed" and instead change it to "free wheel" which enables them to be able to stop pedaling and to coast when they get tired. I like a challenge so I ONLY ride fixed! 

Day 4: More Gym
I am becoming a gym rat! I love trying out all of the different machines and working on different areas of my body. During this workout I did 45 minutes of cardio and then 20 minutes of arms/weight training. I got so into my workout I didn't realize that by the time I was done it was 11:00pm! Time flies when your working out lol...

Day 5: Gym, Gym, and more Gym!
I was tired of the treadmill during this workout (plus the shin splints in my right leg were bugging me) so I decided to do work on the elliptical and stair master. I used to HATE the stair master and would literally only stay on it for like 5 minutes because I got tired so easily. This time was quite the opposite! I beasted out 20 minutes non stop at varying intervals from 4-7. It's the small victories that remind me why I am on this journey! It feels great to see changes in my endurance level.

Day 6: Bollywood!!
My favorite and last workout of the week was the Bollywood class I took on Saturday! Honestly I did not think it would be as much of a workout as it was! It totally kicked my ass! For those that don't know, "Bollywood" is based off of the dances in Indian films (with lots of choreography and drama). The class was super fun and even though I am extremely uncoordinated I think I held my own pretty well! I definitely plan on taking the class again and loved how many calories I burned!

This week was good and next week is going to be even better! I'm really enjoying my workouts and having fun being active! Which makes it much easier to get myself to go. Make sure that you find something you love to do in order to reach your fitness goals. Working out doesn't have to be boring! Try one new workout/activity this week to challenge yourself! Have a great week!

<3 Bri

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Don't Eat the Cake Anna Mae, Don't Eat the Cake!

Even though cake is AWESOME I can't enjoy it like I'd like to lol...Cravings can be a beast, ESPECIALLY when you are a woman and its near a certain time of the month lol...I have a serious sweet tooth but am now very selective about what I consume. Peanut butter is my best friend, it just seems to taste good on everything! Sadly, it's also packed with calories so you should eat it in moderation. Recently I found an awesome peanut butter option which I will be highlighting below in my SPOTLIGHT section. So keep reading!

Last week wasn't my best but it also wasn't my worst. I set a goal to work out 5x and only ended up working out 3x. Though in my defense those three workouts were hardcore and left me feeling extremely sore! Being fit and healthy is all well and good but let's be realistic, people have to work! If you're like me then you have to find a way to squeeze in your workouts in between work and other personal obligations. And it's not that working out isn't a priority because it definitely is BUT when certain things come up you have to deal with them. That being said work obligations put a huge damper on my fitness last week. Reports, client crisis's, and everything else you can imagine seemed to come my way. I'm definitely not the best at keeping up with all of my obligations and often something gets pushed aside, which lately that has been my workouts. BUT I am trying to do better, I've noticed that when I schedule my workouts in my calendar like an appointment I am more likely to keep it.  I have to carve out a time or there's a chance it won't happen!

I have amazing co workers who are very supportive of my journey! This past week after a long staff meeting they joined me at a local park to get in a workout on our lunch break. It was actually a really great workout and motivated me to keep pushing! Lunch time workouts may be the way to go during busy times of the week. 

I've been lucky because most of the people who know about my fitness journey are supportive and help motivate me. So much so that I forget that not everyone is past week while having a conversation with one of my friends I was reminded of this fact! I happened to mention that I was working towards having abs by the summer. My friend chimes in " Come on Bri, be realistic, you're not going to have abs by the summer. You are a stress eater so you might as well just go back to doing what you were before". Though I don't think this person meant to be negative I was totally taken aback. I felt "some type of way" about it and ended up changing the conversation fairly quickly. It served as a reminder that this is MY journey and not anyone elses. Just because someone doesn't support you doesn't mean you should be discouraged or defeated. I will have my abs by the summer because I am going to work my ass off to prove the doubters wrong. What adversities have you faced in your fitness journey? And how have you tackled them?

Like I said earlier I have a HUGE sweet tooth and an obsession with peanut butter! Unfortunately peanut butter is packed with calories and not good to eat in large quantities. I have been on a hunt to find a healthy way for me to be able to consume my favorite snack. I have tried powdered peanut butter (which tastes chalky and gross to me) as well as other nut butters such as almond butter (yummy but still high in calories) and cashew butter. Even low fat and organic peanut butter options usually don't rate well on the calorie counting meter. One day as I was perusing the grocery store aisle I noticed JIF Whips and was intrigued by the container. I noticed that the calories were significantly lower then that of the low fat peanut butter options and decided to try it out. I have been hooked ever since!!

JIF Whips are awesome because it doesn't compromise any of the peanut buttery goodness that you love however its lower in calories because its whipped (which basically means air is added so its fluffy and soft). Jif Whips are 140 calories for 2 TBSP. Not bad! Jif Whips has 25% less calories and fat then the regular JIF peanut butter but tastes the same! I am addicted to this stuff. If you are a peanut butter lover I suggest you check it out! You won't be sorry you did! 

February is a new month! If you fell off in January don't feel bad, just get back on it! Challenge yourself, work hard, eat clean, and workout!!!!! 

<3 Bri