Not a Fashionista

Hiya!! I hope you are all doing well. I just got back from traveling to Tampa for work. Too bad I could have been ANYWHERE in the world, we never got to enjoy it… I’m going to quite a big funk right now, I’m really not feeling like myself, so thanks for baring with my randomness 🙂

There are a lot of things I would describe myself as, none of which is a fashionista. I am not really sure what it is, I like looking nice, and I like investing in nice, classic wardrobe pieces but I think that a large part of me doesn’t want to spend a lot of money until I’ve reached my goal weight (which seems a million miles away, but we will get to that later).

It’s kind of dawning on me how dumb that is. It’s going to take a while, and you don’t need to break the bank to get some nice pieces to spruce up your wardrobe. Especially now that it is spring! When I lived in California I could get away with pretty much the same wardrobe year-round just thrown in a sweater or sun dress here and there. Here it’s a little different. So in the coming months I want to head out and hit up stores like the Nordtrom Rack and H&M and Old Navy  to get a few pieces that will spring-ify my wardrobe.

Pencil skirt:

 

(From Charlotte Russe $16.99) I love me a cute pencil skirt for work, and come fall, I can wear it with tights and boots! Win! I actually had one that I loved but it was dry clean only and someone who shall not be named (coughcoughmyhusbandcough) threw it in the washer and drier. Le sigh.

 

Capris:

 

(Old Navy, $29.95 — just wait for a sale, their prices are ridic when there’s a sale, I don’t think I’ve ever paid more than $20 for something from there) These are something I keep forgetting about, but I think if I can find a cute pair that is flattering on my (read: doesn’t make my hips look like they are taking over the world) they will be a good spring/summer staple. I feel like I need to mention here that I HATE my legs, and it has to be about 90 million degrees to get me into shorts. I have a few pair, but I hate them so much. **shudders**

 

Cute tops:

 

( Old Navy, $8.99 on sale;  I have some fantastic work tops from CAbi (hands down my favorite line of clothing, I just wish that I could afford more pieces) but I am in dire need of some variety and some summery tops. I think you might be getting the gist that I don’t like these warm weather months, and I think it’s because I feel so friggin gross and hot and uncomfortable, and then no matter what I wear, I feel huge. I don’t know what my problem is, but clearly it’s a big one. I want to get some cute, flattering summery tops to throw into the mix. Especially some nautical-inspired ones!

 Last but certainly not least is THE MOST IMPORTANT warm weather item of all:

 

(source)

SUNSCREEN!! I wear at least SPF 25 on my face every day, and I put at minimum 15 SPF on my body before I leave the house for work. If I am taking Aurora out for a walk or anything, I spray on more SPF. I had a skin biopsy last summer and by the looks of it, it was textbook melanoma. I was super fortunate that it was just a regular mole, but it definitely caught my attention and made me even more serious about sunscreen (as did Alyssa’s posts about her surgeries from skin cancer). And if all that isn’t enough to convince you to wear sunscreen and fake tan it up, then hopefully this will. No sunscreen = WRINKLES. Trust me, I am 24 and I already have prematurely aging skin.

Advertisements

Listening to Your Body

Morning! Happy Monday, or something along those lines, I cut my pretty good while trying to open a box, and I am fairly sleepy today. What can you do? I had a great weekend. Got a lot of things done, although not as much as I’d like (it always seems to be the case for me…) and still got to fit in some relaxing.

As you know I’ve been diving a little deeper into this whole “clean eating” business and I’ve been reading quite a few interesting articles and books. But I can’t stop thinking about no matter how many times you call something a “lifestyle” it’s still pretty much a DIET. I’ll get more into my full thoughts later.

Tara Stiles is a yoga instructor, author, and yoga video goddess and I LOVE her books and videos. Especially her little tidbits of wisdom she shares on Facebook and Twitter.

Not too long ago (OK really in February, where is time going?) Tara posted on her Facebook page “It’s easier to go on a diet than pay attention to what your body needs. It’s easier to do what someone says than to decide for yourself. It’s easier to give your power away than to rise and take a stand. Fortunately you have the ability to choose.”

Isn’t she so smart? I think that the first sentence is THE reason why diets fail. You aren’t listening to your body, you’re just doing what someone says is best. Think about that for a little bit. Would you do that with other aspects of your life? Would you just wear whatever someone put out for you that day, no questions asked? Would you just live in a house and work in a job just because you were told to do it? Would you just take medications someone handed you because they said it would be best for you? Where do you live Panem? (hehehe) (And if you’ve done the last one, then there’s a strong chance you’ve done illegal drugs, just sayin…)

So why on earth do we follow diets that tell us when, how, how much and how often to eat? Eating is one thing that you have complete control over. Also if we let them, our bodies are really good about telling us what it wants. We just have to listen! This goes back to Bethenny Frankle’s book where she talks about your food voice vs. food noise. It’s just really hard to figure out which is which!

I do think that some diets can be a good jumping off point, like the 5-Factor Diet, or the Clean Eating Diet, or even the 17 Day diet (I wouldn’t do Phase 1, that’s just me though) to get on track with a healthier lifestyle, but if you let it, these diets will drown out your food voice completely and when you go off-diet, you will go crazy!

It all kind of dawned on me when last week on my way to the dance studio I went to grab an iced coffee and got a brownie. In my mind I was so upset with myself, I had eaten so great all day, why was a ruining it with this? I couldn’t deny that I was indeed hungry and a little tired. So I started drafting a tweet about why do I get so hungry between 2 and 4 p.m. and which always derails my day and ruins everything. Then it dawned on me. Maybe there’s a reason I am hungrier then. Maybe my body just wants a larger meal later in the day. But then I thought, but all the weight loss books say no carbs after lunch if possible and yada yada. Well self, did YOU write this book? Then how does the author know when YOU are most hungry? Say all you want about when science says my metabolism is fastest, if I am consistently hungry at that time, there is a reason.

I feel like I’m rambling, but the bottom line is that whether we are obese and eating McDonald’s 4 times a day or following the strictest of healthy diets, we are ignoring what our bodies suggest, and at the end of the day, they really know what’s best!

My challenge for you this week is to think about when you do or don’t listen to your body, and try to think about why.

Clean Eating Research

Morning lovelies!! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend, whether you had a holiday to celebrate or just the fact that it was the weekend 🙂 Ever since we moved to Utah, our holidays have been fairly low key because we don’t have any family nearby, which has actually been kind of nice.

If you spend any time poking around the health and fitness type blogs, you are sure to come across the term “clean eating.” There are books, blogs, magazines, and diets named after it, but for the longest time I just kind of thought it was a phrase that had lost its meaning and kind of became a catch-all phrase for just healthy food. I mean, I picked up an issue of Clean Eating Magazine and I was like, how is this different from Cooking Light? Or any other health-centered publication?

I had also received a few comments on my blog stating I was such a clean eater and how I did it. I was a little confused. I thought that was a diet or something.

So I did VERY minimal research and I’ve discovered that basically clean eating = eating food as close to its original state as possible. No processed foods, no preservatives. So yes, I do eat fairly clean. But I want to dig a little deeper. I am pretty sure I know what the benefits are, but I think I could use a refresher. Honestly I haven’t been eating that great lately, and I think that doing a little research into the benefits might help me get back on track.

So here is my plan, I am going to head to the library and check out some books about clean eating, read up, and then read some more. Websites, blogs, etc.

Do any of you have any suggestions? Do YOU try to eat “clean”?

Tips for Working Out at Home

Evening! I hope that you had a great Tuesday. Mine was busy. The whole time I was at work was go go go, until I left, an hour after I was scheduled to. It was a great day though, but I know I didn’t have enough to drink because I have a killer headache now. My glasses are on and I am hydrating, and hopefully I will be good to go before bed 🙂

For about the past three months, I’ve been mainly working out at home. I felt like once I got really into running, it wasn’t worth the money I was spending since I wanted to do the majority of my workouts outside. Once I invested in the ChaLEAN Extreme workout DVDs, I loved it even more because I could get in a great strength workout at home, without a lot of equipment.

Working out at home is definitely a double edged sword, on one hand you don’t have to drive anywhere, nor do you have to spend a lot of money on a gym membership. But on the other hand, [I think] you need a lot more discipline.

So, in the spirit of the New Year, I thought I would share some of my at-home workout tips:

  • You don’t need fancy equipment. I have two resistance tubes (the ones with the handles, you can REALLY up the intensity and get a great burn in, trust me), 5 lb. hand weights, a resistance band, and a good yoga matt. I didn’t buy them all at once either, I accumulated them over the years. Jump ropes are fantastic. I should get one.
  • Dress up for the gym. Wear workout clothes and shoes, not pjs and slippers. Your body will feel better for it, and your mind will be more into it. Shoes give you a stable foundation which is vital for injury prevention (for me anyways, everyone is different and I am no expert).
  • Take the time to schedule in your workout. This is huge because the couch is RIGHT THERE. Don’t say (as I often do) “I will just workout sometime after work.” Nope, not going to happen. Take the time to schedule in your workout, and in my opinion, the earlier the better, when possible.
  • Organize your space. We live in a cozy little house, and I don’t have a huge living room, nor a room I can dedicate all to fitness (just WAIT until we get a house with a sun room, it’s going to be awesome). A messy house is a HUGE distraction for me, and I find it a lot harder to focus on my workouts when I have clutter distracting me.
  • Make your gear accessable. This is another big deal, don’t hide it away in a closet or in the entertainment center. Out of site out of mind, right?
  • Make a schedule and make it visible. My training schedule is up on the fridge, but even if you aren’t training for something in particular, take some time each month to map out your workouts and make a plan. That way you don’t have to think about what to do once you’re ready to workout, it’s already ready to go.
  • Minimize excuses. Get dinner in the oven, tell the kids to play quietly in their rooms, ask the husband to give you some time alone, whatever works for you so that you won’t become distracted and cut your workout short. But on the other hand, if you DO get distracted, COME BACK. It’s better to take a 20 minute break to deal with something and come back than to just let the rest of your workout go.
  • Get DVDs. Want workout DVDs for free? Hit up the library. Most larger city or county libraries will let you order from other branches and pick up wherever is most convenient for you. Check out their website! But don’t rely on DVDs, you can also find great free workouts online, just poke around.
  • Incorporate some quiet time into your workout. This is something that I LOVE to do before the day starts. For me it really sets the tone for my day. After your workout, just sit, stand, stretch, or whatever, and take a moment to feel how great your body feels after working out.

Do you workout at home? Do you have any fancy equipment? I know I say it about 100 times a day, but I would love a treadmill for the wintertime, with an iPad stand haha. Or a spin bike in front of the TV, why not be productive while watching 200 episodes in a row of 30 Rock and How I Met Your Mother and Felicity

Making Resolutions

Happy Friday!! I decided somewhat last minute to take today off, for a few reasons. One, I was feeling a little fried, and I saw on my pay stub that I have nearly 80 hours of PTO, and I had finished all my work for the week. Win. I slept in, now I am sipping coffee and blogging, and it’s amazing.

Pretty much everywhere you look in blogland, you see 2012 recaps, or super detailed resolutions for the bloggers, which really got me thinking about how I am fairly on the fence about the whole resolutions thing, and here is why: If you really want to make a change, why wait until a certain date on the calendar says to?

But, on the other hand, the end of the year makes a great excuse to look at where you were a year ago, where you are now, and use the turning of the calendar to refocus on getting what you want out of life.

This year, I am taking the time to set a few goals for the year, but at the same time, I am not doing anything drastic, just because it’s 2012. Maybe that’s why a lot of resolutions are failed or forgotten, some of it is forced by the calendar, and people aren’t 100% behind themselves. (Don’t get me wrong though, I think that a lot of people also have great resolutions and excel at them, it’s different for everyone.)

So this year I’ve decided to set some goals I would like to achieve. Nothing drastic or dramatic, but things I really want to accomplish.

source

1. Run a half marathon. This will be a fast one to nock out, since it’s 4 weeks away. After my first, I will see if maybe I want to run another one, the Salt Lake City half sounds like fun!

2. Reach my goal weight of 140 lbs by my 25th birthday (Aug. 31).

3. Vamp up the blog. The last few months have been great, and now that I feel like I’ve found my groove, I just want to keep going.

4. Get back into dance.

5. Set up, and stick to, a budget with the husband so we can move towards a new car and a house 🙂

6. Apply to get my masters in strategic communications from the University of Utah (once I’ve been in Utah for a year so I can get the resident’s rate).

So here is the kicker, it’s one thing to set goals, but you need to create a plan for success. 

1. I feel like I am already half way through the half marathon goal, so that one is already set. IF I decide to do the second one, I am going to look into a longer training plan, that includes more cross training. If I decide not too, I am still going to continue running. Let’s face it, I am hooked.

2. So this is a three parter, but ultimately it boils down to consistency. One, to broaden my fitness horizons with new workouts, new challenges, and continually pushing myself physically. Two, eat a balanced, healthy diet with the goal of weight loss in mind. No crash diets or detoxes or quick fixes, they don’t work. Three, get into the game mentally. I have a tendency to ebb ad flow when it comes to my weight loss focus, and that’s not going to help any.

3. I have some exciting plans for this, but I think I’d rather keep it as a surprise for you.

4. I miss it SO MUCH! I found a few studios I want to try in the area. Time to bust out my leotards and ballet shoes. This is something I’ve been putting off because I feel “too big” to go back to dance. But really, at 400+ calories an hour, what better way to get toned?

5. It’s just something good to do every year to keep things on track.

6. This is something I’ve been toying with for a while, and I think it’s a great time to do it.

I am sure that other things will come up, but I think that this is a great place to start 🙂

How do you approach the new year? 

Uncharted Territory

Good afternoon! I hope you are having a lovely day so far. I have been a busy bee and didn’t realize how late it was. I just finished a larabar and some tea, it was the perfect afternoon pick-me-up before my 4 mile (easy) run I have on the books today.

Speaking of mileage, I am officially in unchartd territory. I’ve talked a little about my history with running, but I’ve never run father than 4 miles at one time. Until last week.

(The first 7 and 5 had a few miles of scheduled walking. From Daily Mile) but my 5 mile long run is the farthest I’ve ever run. In. My. Life. Pretty crazy to think about! Especially since I am just over a third of the way there.

I know this sounds silly, but it never really dawned on me that I would be running this far. I mean, I knew I would be running, but I never realized how much. Suddenly, I see that after today, I’ve run farther than 100 miles since I started training. If you had told me that a year ago, I would have thought you were nuts.

I realized today that there was really only two ways I could think of this. One, I could become scared and uncertain because I have crossed the line into the unknown. OR, I can realize that I have accomplished more than I ever thought possible and I am going to continue to soar.

I chose the latter.

Maybe I am not as fast as I hope to be, or I am not as slim as I want to be, or one thing or another. But I can’t focus on that. I can focus on listening to body and pushing myself to my limits, and beyond. That’s the ONLY way accomplish something amazing.

I’d love to hear new accomplishments you are proud of, they don’t need to be any kind of fitness or running related! Share something you are excited about, don’t be shy! Take a minute to brag about yourself, I know you deserve it 🙂

No One Said It Would Be Easy

Morning! As I’ve been struggling to lose weight the last few months and then adding on this HUGE task of completing a half marathon, I’m beginning to realize something. People lie.

A lot.

“Oh once I cut out all cheese, the weight just disappeared!”
“I just started running, and I shrank!”
“If I have a fitness goal then the pounds just fall off.”
“I don’t know, it just happened!”
“Your body naturally wants to be thin, you just have to listen to it.”

LIES. All of it lies. Maybe not intentionally and maybe some of it is true for that person, but I think that a lot of time people (myself included) get this idea that once they find their secret weapon, the weight will just disappear.

Well I am here to tell you that that’s usually not the case. And that just one thing is not going to be the magic spell that makes the scale show results you’ve been wishing for. Yes, there may be a tipping point (sorry Caitlin, but you have a good thing going!) that affects all other aspects of your life and makes the decisions more of a “no brainer” but I am here to tell you that there is no quick fix.

There is hard work, dedication, and a lot of sweat and tears. You are going to have a good week, and then you are going to have a bad week. You are going to feel like a rockstar, and you are going to feel like crap.

I think that a lot of time people truly believe that there was ONE thing that changed it all for them. I even did it myself a few years ago. I lost 20 lbs. and I would say things like “Oh I just started walking more” or “I just cut out junk and look!” And even now, when I look back, I don’t remember suffering or feeling like I wanted to die. I read The 5 Factor Diet made a commitment to stick with it, and saw real results.

The truth was, it was 5 days a week in the gym and eating healthy, well portioned meals. It was changing my entire lifestyle to no longer just eat takeout and to space out my calories throughout the day. It was persevering even when I wanted to quit. And yes, some of it was making some simple small changes that made a world of difference. But in the end, the only one thing that changed was ME.

I’ve been mentally struggling with my lack of weight loss, and I’ve caught myself thinking, well if I could just find that ONE thing that would make this all easier, then I would be fine. It’s not one thing. It’s not easy. It’s really hard work! AAnd making a TRUE commitment to change that will show you the results you want.

I think I needed this much of a reminder as anyone. Do you ever find yourself thinking you just need to find the “magic” component to achieve your goals? Even if they aren’t weight loss related?