Tag Archives: CHANGES

Week #1 Marathon Training

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UPDATE: I decided it was too much to start training this early for a marathon and pushed it off until July.  I didn’t keep up with posting here, but updated everything on Social Media.  Check out my Marathon Recap from December for the full story!

April 17 – So the first day was a scheduled “rest day.” Kinda silly, but I understand why it’s like this since the rest of the weeks I will need the rest come Monday. But those of you that know me well enough, know that “rest day” isn’t necessarily in my vocabulary. I’ll preach to everyone else to make sure to take a full rest day, but it’s difficult for me with the training, practicing for and teaching my fitness classes, and having my social walks with friends. But there are definitely days that I take it easier and don’t push it, which I consider rest compared to regular days. So since this was day one, I did about 80% of a kickboxing workout (got a little lightheaded toward the end so decided to call it quits), then went for a 3.8 walk with a friend. Felt good, ate good. Not enough water, but better than I did on vacation. Did have about 3/4 of a leftover Sahlen’s hot dog that my mom left in my fridge (noms) as an evening snack. Oh well, it was worth it.

April 18 – Back to reality after spring break. Was active most of the day since I started inventory in the library while we’re slow before SOLs. Training schedule called for 1.5 miles which seems ridiculous to me, but it actually feels like I’m retraining myself altogether. A few times I looked down and was doing about 7:45-8 minute mile and I need to get out of that mindset. I think I have figured out that I will aim for 9:45-10 minute mile for marathon pace. That’s my conversational pace so I’m hoping to work that out. I know longer runs will be easier for me to take it easy. Short runs I always just go for as fast as possible, so old habits die hard. I’ll work on it 😛 I like that this schedule has two super easy runs, a bit of a longer run mid-week, then a longer run on the weekend. I think it’ll work out really well, especially once it gets hotter. I can’t wait until summer when I can do all my runs in the morning before it gets too warm and sunny. Did Combat Kickstart after I got back from my run. I think I’ll rotate through many of my kickboxing/MMA programs to work my arms and core since my legs get a lot of work from running, but all the kicks help strengthen and stretch my quads and hamstrings, too. I want to do more weight lifting, too, but was wanting more cardio today. Ate really good, except one chocolate truffle that a co-worker brought back from her trip to England. Considered it a great success since normally I would eat multiple!!

April 19 – 3 miles was on the schedule for today, but I did 3.1 because I can definitely handle the extra. Stayed at about 9:20 average pace which felt pretty good. Was cloudy and 59, which is a temp I can definitely handle. Ended up helping Ricky mow the lawn when I got done with my run – him on the rider and me on the push mower. Shoulders and back were screaming from inventory, punching from the MMA routines, and pushing the mower around. Definitely gonna rest the arms the next couple of days.

April 20 – Super warm today – 79, and barely any breeze. Plus the first time I’ve ran three days in a row in a super long time. Averaged about a 9:30, which is not the worst it could be…but made me feel pretty lame for only 1.5 miles. I hate hate hate hot weather. I would rather run in 40 degrees any day. Thankfully the marathon is in November… Taught my fitness class later that night. Lots of steps today!

April 21 – Friday is another scheduled rest day, but I teach my fitness class at my other location on Fridays. But I only did that, so I definitely rested from running and overexerted cardio. Sleeping isn’t the best that it could be, but working on getting upstairs earlier each night so I can at least try to fall asleep earlier. Definitely don’t want to have to medicate myself in order to fall asleep quicker or stay sleeping, unless completely necessary.

April 22 – Got up bright and early to get 3.1 miles out of the way before my my bi-annual VRC meeting in Charlottesville. I knew I was going to hang out with a friend after the meeting and then game night when I got home, so it had to get done before I left or it never would. Averaged a little faster than the 3.1 earlier this week, but it was only 55 and raining. Thankfully it didn’t start pouring until the last few tenths of a mile. After my half in Virginia Beach a little over a month ago, I won’t ever skip a run because it’s running unless it’s ridiculously cold or somehow unsafe. I figure if I ran 13.1 in near-monsoon weather, with a sandstorm, I can handle anything haha. Shared a bottle of wine with a friend at a winery, and had more cheese than I think any human should, but totally worth it 😛

April 23 – Taught my last Sunday fitness class then went for a nearly 4 mile walk with a friend. Schedule calls for a 30 minute walk, but we usually do around 60. Didn’t make the best nutrition choices today, but we were out and about with errands. Gotta get packing – Punta Cana is gonna be here before we know it! Adjusting my schedule next week so I’m not expected to run after arriving in the Dominican Republic, because you know that won’t happen! So I’ll run M-T-W instead of T-W-Th. I’ll still do the second long run on Saturday, because that way I can say I ran in the DR 😛

Weekly wrap-up — pretty pleased with how everything started out. I only go up a little on my second longer run next week…the rest of the runs are the same. I definitely think I could increase the mileage quicker, but I’m trusting the schedule and really want to get through the training injury free. Especially with the foot pain from the last half and subsequent runs thereafter, I definitely don’t want to push things too quickly. I think a lot of that came from treadmill running and I’m going to stay away from that unless the weather is really ridiculous. We’ll see how everything progresses! 🙂

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Half Marathon #3 Recap

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I figure since it’s been a month, I can finally do the recap for my third half marathon.  As disappointing as it was, I also learned a lot and it hasn’t scarred me permanently 😛 Thanks for following my journey!

Training:
I had planned on doing the 12 week Hal Higdon plan, like I did for the first two.  The first week of the 12 was the last week of Beachbody’s Health Bet challenge, and there was a week where we had a pre-scheduled trip to Snowshoe Mountain resort so I rested from running those two weeks and only trained 10. The change of routine actually helped me increase pace.

Though I had increased my pace during my last training, it had been over a year.  So this time around I started at roughly a 9:45-10 minute mile.  The last week of my training I was averaging 8:30-9.  I knew I needed about 9 for the race to hit PR.  In retrospect, I should have done more run/walk intervals since I figured I wouldn’t be able to run the whole thing, but pace was where my focus was.  Run/walk intervals based on feel is now the plan for my first marathon and hoping to PR on a half during the training for that.

Time/Results:

  • I finished in 2:03:54 (previous times were 2:01:45 and 2:06:26)
  • 1696 out of 5445 overall (31%)
  • 731 out of 3280 females (22%)
  • 136 out of 559 females 35-39 (24%)
  • Pace was 9:16 min/mi at the 10k split
  • Overall pace was 9:28 min/mi

Gear:
Went against my better judgement with wearing some new gear, but everything worked out! I figured since the conditions were already less than ideal, it couldn’t hurt too much more ha.

  • TreadBands headband – never slipped ONCE and so excited for that!  I ended up buying two after a demo at the expo.  They are guaranteed for life, so I figured what the hell!  I was nothing was happy with them!  Check them out!  http://treadbands.com/ or https://www.facebook.com/TreadBands/.
  • I wore a new Shamrock tank from the expo, but it was a Brooks tech shirt so thought it would be better in the rain than the cotton tanks I brought with me.
  • New running jacket with air vents on the sleeves and upper back.  It stayed put, never chafed, and kept me cool and warm at the same time.  I had owned it for a few months but the weather never gave me the “opportunity” to need it for a training run.
  • I ended up wearing a thinning pair of compression socks rather than my double layer SwiftWicks. I thought those would get heavy once wet.
  • Saucony Guide 8s that I was training on since day one.  I started training with 9s last fall for the half I ended up deferring but I strongly dislike the new EVERUN layer.  The extra cushion is great for walking, but make my feet feel heavy running.  After three weeks of painful running (last fall), I ended up ordering another pair of 8s online, in the same color I had for 2015’s half training.  Love them. I had about 130 miles on them at the start of the race.  Gonna look into other stabilization shoes from Saucony – saw some Hurricane  ISOs at the expo that felt good – whch is also a stabilization shoe. bt I do need to get my gait and form looked at again. I’m starting to think having “corrective” shoes might have turned me into a neutral runner, which is what might be causing part of  the pain in my foot.
  • Nike Epic Run Dri-FIT Crop — Ah – May – ZING.  Love them.  Will never go back.  I have two pairs now.  Mesh air vents  behind the knees keep you cool.  There are three pockets, one with a zipper, and they are a compression pant.  They stay put and they are mid-calf so don’t ride up on my knee like my other capris, too.
  • VS Incredible sports bra – no bounce…very necessary.
  • Body Glide on pretty much everything , and Aquaphor between my toes. Never chafed once, anywhere.

During race:
Conditions – 39 degrees, 20 mph sustained winds, 40 mph gusts – constant rain.

Route – out of the VA Beach resort area, next to First Landing State Park, through Fort Story, then ending on the boardwalk at King Neptune (seeing him once you get on the boardwalk…objects in distance during a half marathon are farther away than they appear at first glance…you still have almost a freaking half mile then). At least there was very little elevation gain.

Food – had some farina with maple syrup before the race and two scoops of Energize.  Had Jelly Belly sports beans for on the course – I think 6 of them.  Will bring more next time, and also train with Gu so I can use that at mile 5.5 (I bought one to train with and forgot).

I was scheduled to start in Corral 4, but was hoping for a sub-2 hr. PR, so I moved to Corral 5 to be with the pacers there.  It was a little confusing at the beginning, too, since he bumped some of us up to Corral 3 and then had to slow his pace to wait for the ones stuck in 5.  I stayed with the 2 hr. pacer until mile 9 or so.  Should’ve just done my own thing, since I knew I’d have to walk eventually.

-The lady between mile 10 and 11 with box of tissues was a GODSEND.  I normally pack tissues into my pockets – one for each mile – so I can blow my nose.  I did that (thanks hotel guy) but they were wet wads in my pocket before I even reached mile one – threw them on the side of the road (sorry cleanup crew).

-Foot pain afterward.  Both feet hurt.  Don’t think I stretched enough after.  Was heavy footed because of the rain and training on mainly treadmill for the last four weeks didn’t help.  I need to make sure to get outside as often as possible during marathon training…

Shout-outs:
Holiday Inn VA Beach – they were super nice and helpful.  They explained about road closures and how to find everything easily, knowing most of the guests were there for the race.  We got an automatic 2 p.m. check-out if in the race block. They offered a carb-loading dinner the night before in the hotel.  There were also free breakfast packs to two people in the room (muffin, banana, water) – available before the regular breakfast time of 6:30 which is helpful since the half started at 7.  The guys at the desk were handing out garbage bags for makeshift ponchos, tissues for snot and crying, and just overall support.  They were awesome.

Back Bay Gourmet – yummy carb loading on Friday night.  Super delicious sweet potato biscuits and amazing food overall – great beer selection!

Green Flash Brewery – really affordable drinking!  Sample cups were like 4 oz. and only $1.25.  Full pours (16 oz I’m guessing) for $5!  Lots of options, but no tours :-/

Repeal Bourbon & Burgers – OMG YUM.  The burgers were perfectly cooked.  Bacon dust – just get it.  The mac and cheese is the bomb, too, and their drinks were yummy.

Home Republic – Gouda cream…on EVERYTHING.  Decent beers, good food. Just don’t expect soup before dinner time haha.

Duck Donuts – they’re just always amazing no matter where you are – but better fresh. Great to have in the car on the way home when snack sensations hit (and calorie burn is at its max).

Future:
Ended up doing my 5th annual Monument Ave 10k less than two weeks later.  Took it easy and ran the whole thing, which was something I wasn’t sure would happen after the foot pain.  I’m signed up for the half in Richmond in November, but planning on upgrading to the full once we get closer (have to decide before 10/31).  Marathon training starts tomorrow (4/18) and we’ll see how I progress up until the final decision time.  We’ve already signed up for the Dolphin Challenge during Shamrock next March which is the 8k on Saturday and Half on Sunday. The route was great – let’s just hope the weather conditions are better!  And I’ve committed to joining my friend on her “race in every state” challenge – with no time limit to complete it.  I already have NY, VA, MD, DC, NC, and NV.  Excited to add to the list!  Stay tuned for another post on that 🙂

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Top Signs Your Body Needs a Detox (and 3 Day Refresh results!)

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The results are in!  But first, why I did it…

The holidays were really rough for me with nutrition, exercise, and drinking my water.  I THRIVE on routine.  When I’m at work and following my regular schedule for the week, I do just fine (for the most part).  But when I’m not on that routine, I just don’t give it the full effort.  It’s not because I don’t want to, time just passes before I realize I haven’t drank any water or done many steps in that amount of time, and it’s hard to catch back up.  Then you throw holiday treats, parties and such in there…it’s a MESS.  So at the end of the year, I found myself exhibiting all of the signs of needing a detox.

My energy level was way way down, even though I would still exercise here and there…the motivation to do it was seriously lacking.  My belly was so bloated that I was muffin-topping like nobody’s business in most of my pants :-/ I knew I had put on some weight, but was afraid to step on the scale.  I didn’t step on until the morning of the day I started my Refresh and oh, boy.  Bad news bears.  I was craving anything and everything.  All stuff that I don’t deprive myself of completely, but seriously limit when I’m staying on track because of my addictive personality…chocolate, pasta, cereal, anything desserty…I couldn’t keep my hands off of it, and before I knew it entire boxes and packages of things were gone.  And I didn’t even share 🙁 My head was getting cloudy and I was getting more forgetful, which just isn’t me.  I rarely have trouble sleeping through the night and was waking up constantly…it was super annoying and would be no good going back to my regular schedule.  I was starting to get sick, which was crazy for me since I hadn’t been sick since November 2015 and we’re pretty sure that was e coli (so not really avoidable ha).  I’m usually able to stave off everything, especially working around kids all day!  So that was a huge red flag. And finally, my eczema had come back full force.  Some of this was from overwashing of my hands and the cold temps, of course, but normally it’s much easier to keep in control when I’m actually on track with my nutrition and water.

So day one of the Refresh I weighed myself and I was back up to 182.6.  Now this weight may not be bad for some of you, but think back to when I did the Ultimate Reset in August.  I got down to 166.6.  That means that in 4 months I had gained back 16 pounds.  That’s pretty much what I lost on the Reset in the first place…and I felt so damn good when I finished that.  I had vowed to limit my dairy and meat, be careful with sweets, and such.  I did really well for awhile, but then reverted back into some old habits.  Now don’t get me wrong…I love my treats.  I indulge once in awhile for sure…but not like I was at the end of the year.  It was an every day thing, not just a once in awhile thing.  And that’s just not me.  I knew I needed to get back to the basics with my Shakeology, healthy fats, fruits and veggies…to fuel my system with what it needed and flush all the toxins that had built up.

So here we are after completing day three…I’m down 7.6 pounds and feeling amazing.  My head is clearer, my bloat is gone, my cravings have seriously diminished, my skin is clearing up, and I slept through the night.  I am so stoked and feel prepared to continue on to our Health Bet challenge starting Monday!  I’m gonna CRUSH my goals!!

So, if you’re exhibiting some of the signs that your body needs a detox, you may just want to do just that.  I can give you info about the 3 Day Refresh, but this isn’t a selling ploy.  It’s just something I know works for me!  You can just go back to the basics for a few days or a week to get your body in a better state.  Start with drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water a day, adding more veggies to each meal, eating some lower sugar fruits, and limiting or eliminating dairy and meat for a few days.  The Refresh has you cut out regular carbs for those three days since you’re getting them from your protein shakes, Shakeology, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats, but at least limiting them can help your body process things easier and better. If you want more info about the Refresh or more advice about how to detox without the use of a program, let me know.  I’d love to help 🙂

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Take Control

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So… it’s the second day of the new year.  This is usually the time for people to make their resolutions and decide what kind of goals they are going to achieve in 2o17.  Yesterday I talked about my goals for the year, in regards to TONS of different things…health, fitness, love, life, friendship, extracurricular activities, travel, etc.  Will I achieve them all?  Probably not, but I’m sure as hell gonna try my best to do so!  But you know what I WON’T do?  Make excuses.  I AM THE ONE THAT HAS CONTROL.  Will other things affect my goals?  You bet your ass.  But will I ALLOW them to take control and give up on my goals?  NO FREAKING WAY.  Like today, I was running a fever, had a runny nose, felt like crap, it was raining and cold…but I got out there and ran 3.1 miles anyways (well, I walked more than ran I think…but at least I made the effort!).

For some of you, you have to have TOUGH LOVE with yourself.  You have to dig deep and really decide what it is you want and what you’ll do to achieve that.  It might take giving something up…it might take adding something to the mix…or maybe just adjusting your focus.  But whatever you do…it’s gotta be UP TO YOU. Take control.

Last week I shared an amazing article on Facebook entitled “Hate to Break it to You But You Are the Reason Your Life Sucks So Much.”  Harsh?  Yes.  But totally TRUE. It was so true that I found myself nodding my head so hard and giving myself a headache at all the TRUTH ha.  You can click that title to head to the article itself, but these are three quotes that stood out to me the most and what I took away from it. I’ll vary my focus from just nutrition/fitness so that you can get a variety of situations to use these mindsets.

–“The only thing holding you back from achieving greatness is in fact YOU.”
If you want to lose 25 pounds this year and it’s a logical goal, well let’s freaking do it.  I can tell you that of the people that I’ve coached, I’ve never had ONE person NOT see results if they actually buckled down and followed a workout and nutrition program for its recommended plan and amount of time.  When someone tells me something didn’t work for them, the first question I ask them is, “Well did you follow it to a T?”  If their answer is no, I tell them to go back and try again.  Can you tweak things and still see results?  Sure.  But give it the recommended time for your first round and SEE RESULTS, then worry about changing it up.  Obviously things you’ve tried in the past haven’t worked, so why not try something that has proven results? Eh?

–“You will never be happy if you’re constantly looking at the negatives.”

If you want to have a better relationship with your friend, partner, co-worker, and/or family member…make it happen!  Instead of thinking about all of the negative things about your relationship, focus on the positives and figure out how to make those things COMPOUND.  Don’t just sit down and decide what makes each other unhappy and work on limiting those things from happening…look at what makes you happy and do MORE of it.  If you’re constantly focusing on the negatives and figuring out everything that has gone wrong, it’s hard to see all the good things that are there.  But you know what?  For some of you it might also be a wake-up call that the relationship you’re working so hard to save (even if you’ve been BFFs for 10 years), may be negative in itself and TOXIC.  Surround yourself with people with similar goals and aspirations and you’ll be better for it.  Even if you don’t take that negative relationship away…try to add more positive ones and you’ll see a difference.

–“Don’t stand in the way of your own life, don’t give up when things get hard because quitting will never get you anywhere. Instead work harder and work smarter.”

Let’s focus on careers for this one. So many people are in jobs that they don’t necessarily enjoy, but they make it work because it’s money to support them and their families.  Sometimes you’re stuck for whatever reason.  Or maybe you’re happy working your (albeit slightly mediocre) job because you have less responsibility and you’re okay with that.  Or you may be happy in your job and you already follow the mentality listed above.  Whatever scenario you can relate to, you gotta make it work.  If it’s something worthwhile, supports you and your endeavors and you CAN make it work, do it.  Find ways to make it better and focus on the positives in this one, too.

I can relate greatly to this one…before this year, I was working in a school where I felt unsupported financially and administratively, and to make matters worse I was driving 90 minutes ONE WAY to get there.  I even received a job at another, much closer, location after one year, but wasn’t granted release from my contract to leave.  So did I go back the second year and pout and gripe and bitch and moan about it the entire year?  Well, maybe a few gripes to the great friends I made there…ha…but NO!  I made the best of it.  I relished in the fabulous friendships I made with the teachers and staff.  I made the most of every time I got to work with an individual or group of students. We made the best of a bad situation, and made sure that none of the kids (and most of the teachers) we were helping knew the lack of resources  we actually had.  We worked harder AND smarter.  We were resourceful.  And I survived and am now much closer, much more supported, and much happier in my present situation.  Do I miss the challenges that I faced at my previous position?  Not a chance, but I do miss the great relationships I made while I was there.  But I never gave up and I learned a lot from the situation for sure.

So yeah…to sum it up.  TAKE CONTROL of your life.  Make your own decisions and figure out what you need to do to get to where you want to be.  Even if someone/something else IS to blame, don’t place the blame on them/it.  Take ownership and figure out what you can do to OVERCOME.  Stop overthinking and talking the talk…DO IT and WALK THE WALK.  Prove the doubters wrong.  Better yet, prove YOURSELF wrong.  Hell, you’ve doubted yourself long enough, haven’t you?!  And if you suck at believing in yourself, eventually you’ll stop failing at it if you keep trying.  Let’s FAIL FORWARD.

We had a team call tonight and had to reflect on what our purpose in life was…along with what to enjoy and what to do in this purposeful life. I’ve shared mine below and I encourage you to think about what would fill in YOUR blanks.  Take control…own it.

Cat’s purpose:
The purpose of my life is to make the best of every situation, to enjoy life’s little moments, and to do everything I can to be happy and healthy and fulfilled.

What’s yours??
The purpose of my life is ______________, to enjoy _______________, and to do _______.

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Fresh Start 2017

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I woke up this morning, drank a full glass of water before I even got out of bed, and started my 3 Day Refresh. This will help me kickstart this new year, fresh start.  No new year, new me…I’m still the same person today than I was last night at 11:59 p.m. 😀  But, as 2016 was ending last night, I couldn’t help but find myself reflecting on all of the stuff that happened over the course of the year and there were definitely more positives than negatives.  But it definitely got me thinking about 2017 and the big goals I have set for myself this year!

I plan on posting here as much as possible (aiming for once a day, but I have to be realistic haha)…that’s one of the goals. It was recommended that I blog about everything going on – fitness, health, running, traveling, books, etc.  And I think that’s a great idea! These are all a huge part of my life and I make an effort to focus on as many of them daily as possible! I juggle a lot of things and I think they’re all important. So these goals are going to be very eclectic, but that’s me 😀

I definitely do better with lists, because if they’re written down they HAVE to happen!!…so this year’s goals, in no particular order:

-Post more in this blog/website
-Run at least one race a month
-Get a half marathon PR
-Run a marathon
-Log 2017 miles (running, walking, crawling) in 2017
-Lose 20 pounds
-Read 50 books
-Take a ski trip out west
-Spend more quality time with my husband, without electronics nearby
-Have a game night at least every other month, with friends
-Visit more wineries
-Get more boxes unpacked and things put away in the new house
-Organize the garage
-Go golfing
-Try many new recipes
-See a play on Broadway
-Focus on more personal development
-Complete the Breakthrough Academy

And there are some things that can’t really be considered goals since they are already planned and definitely taking place, but they’re just things I’m really looking forward to doing!!

-Dance-A-Thon featuring Country Heat Live in January
-Snowshoe ski trip with friends in February
-Shamrock Half Marathon with friends in March
-Monument Ave 10k (my fifth time!) in April
-OBX trip with family in April
-Punta Cana trip with Beachbody in April
-The weddings of two close friends in May
-Parents’ 30th anniversary in July
-Summit in New Orleans with my team in July
-Richmond Race in November (half or full…remains to be decided!)

So I encourage you to get out there, add to your bucket list, set some goals, and look forward to all of the things that 2017 can bring!  Whether 2016 was good, bad, or a combination of both, learn from it and move forward.  Keep looking ahead, challenge yourself,  and do what needs to be done to reach all of your goals 😀

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The Last Hoorah!

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I’m looking for TEN people who want to start the new year feeling AMAZING rather than the other 98% of the world feeling miserable. Wake up on New Year’s Day ready to dominate 2016 instead of making the same old resolution every year that doesn’t happen. The holidays are quickly approaching and while all of the parties and events are amazing, food (and lots of it) typically comes with each of them. Unfortunately many of us will put on extra weight. Like me…last year I definitely put on some pounds (damn pumpkin pie). Thankfully I had the tools and support already to help me jump right back in it and I lost the weight…but it wasn’t easy!

I have decided that THIS year I am going to be prepared. WHO’S WITH ME?! Establishing a healthy nutrition plan before the holidays will help us to be more aware of what and how much we are eating. Plus, losing a few pounds before they arrive will give you a little wiggle room to indulge here and there! tongue emoticon Hey – we are only human after all!

You still have three more months left in this year to rewrite your story. You CAN stick to your goals…TOGETHER we’ll find the best solution to help you work toward starting 2016 feeling the best you ever have. Can’t wait to start!! Email me at losingfatwithcat@gmail.com, find me on my Facebook page and shoot me a message, or you can drop some info here: http://goo.gl/forms/DK2lzSt36C.

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Can you Relate?! :-P

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weightloss

So today I tackled my dressers and closets for the FOURTH purge since I started this journey. Now everything I own either fits or will soon and nothing is too big. For the last three purges I kept things because I was worried I’d gain it back or not be comfortable wearing things that actually fit correctly haha. Well, not anymore. GOOD RIDDANCE. I’m so proud of how far I’ve come and am so thankful for all of your support as I’ve gone through the ups and downs of weight loss. I truly am blessed to have amazing friends, family, fellow Fixers, and followers! Thank you Carl Daikeler and the Beachbody Challenge for motivating me to be my best, get healthy, and help to ‪#‎endthetrend‬ of obesity 😀

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Transformation Tuesday

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Eeep!  Scary post!  It’s been awhile since I’ve had a Transformation Tuesday of my own to share, mainly because the scale hasn’t been going down and I didn’t want to just post past progress.  I recently went to Cancun, as many of you know, and finally put on the first bikini I’ve ever worn in public (picture on the right).  Though my confidence has grown since the picture on the left, it was still nerve-wracking and I felt embarrassed and self conscious after we left our room at the resort to head to the beach.  I even thought about hopping back on the tram to go back to the room and put my tankini on to cover up my tummy.  But as I stood there at the entrance to our section at the beach, I looked around at all of the other women there.  Not because I wanted to compare myself to them, but because I know everyone’s story is different.  Like an article I posted the other day, every tummy has a story.  There were some tummies around me that held babies in the past or even in the present; there were tummies that were a little “puffy” because there was so much delicious food at our resort; big tummies, little tummies, tummies in between.  I thought about my tummy and how I’ve lost 50 pounds, as well as 8 inches in my waist and 8 inches in my hips.  I have loved my body enough to get healthy, be active, and eat cleaner.  So why wasn’t I embracing the changes my body has made and be PROUD of my tummy and baring it to the world.  So I went out onto that beach, took off my coverup, and waded into the Caribbean Sea with a smile on my face and a bounce in my step.  I need to remember that feeling every time I’m down and out or not progressing further toward my goal as quickly as I’d like. I may not be at my goal weight, but I’ve sure come a long way and I need to love my body as much as I have loved this process. 😀

Feel free to connect with me at www.facebook.com/bbcatmcmaster – I would love to follow your journey, too!

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Summer Body Bootcamp!!

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Now accepting applications for my brand new Summer Body Bootcamp! It’s only 21 days, and it’s got everything laid out for you. You’ll know EXACTLY what to eat and what workouts to do to get amazing results. If you want details, comment below with your email address or message me. I’m only accepting TEN people who want to be one step closer to their summer-ready body in only 21 days. You can also apply here:http://goo.gl/forms/5CwHxS4i5m.

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One year wrap-up in 905 words ^_^

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So today marks one year since I started this weight loss journey and decided to change my lifestyle to a healthier one FOR GOOD.  Though I did my first 21 Day Fix workout on February 24, 2014, I have to backtrack a little bit to when my challenge pack first arrived.  There was one bigger book with a whole lot of colors and lists, and like three little pamphets, plus three dvds, a bunch of containers that seemed so tiny, a shaker cup and this giant bag of Shakeology.  I was very nervous and trepidatious at first, because everything else I had been trying hadn’t worked.  I’d lose some weight then gain it right back the second I looked at chocolate cake or pizza.  It was logical to be skeptical right?  But then I sat down and started calculating.  TWO THOUSAND CALORIES.  The program had me eating five times a day and 2000 calories.  Sheyeah right.  I had literally been shooting for 1200 ever since I could remember…but I decided that I had to give it the three weeks and put my trust in something unknown to see what it could do.

My coach had added me to a private online accountability group and we had to check in, and show pictures of our food, and take sweaty selfies, and share our experiences with each other.  Not only had weight loss and fitness been a pretty individual thing for me up until that point, but a lot of the other challengers didn’t have much to lose and I felt like the token fat chick.  But I quickly learned a lot of things about myself and others in just those three weeks.  The first thing I learned was, just because someone is a size 2 doesn’t mean they are happy with their body.  I was confused why someone so small would want to be doing a diet and exercise program.  I had assumed that everyone did Beachbody programs because they wanted to lose weight.  Little did I know that the nutrition plans that were provided with the programs not only could help someone lose weight, but could assist in maintaining and even GAINING weight!  And the workout programs all have a modifier to make things lower impact, while there’s always some over-zealous person on screen to amp things up a bit, too.  And I was also participating in this group with some ladies that were very comfortable with their size 18 bodies, but just wanted to be healthier wives, moms, lovers, etc.  I quickly learned that everyone is on their own journey, and you should never compare your journey to anyone else’s.  We all have different steps to follow, and even missteps we will take along the way.  We have different reasons and motivation that push us in the directions we go, and temptations that will drive us backward if we let them.

Those little containers weren’t so little after I realized how much food you really could eat when it was fueling your body for optimal nutrition and health.  Long gone were the days of starving myself on purpose, eating 1200 calories without taking into account the workout I did for the day, or chain-smoking to keep myself from overeating.  This was a much more advanced way of thinking but strangely simplistic and easy to follow once I got the hang of it.  The workouts kicked my ass, but in all honesty I hadn’t really put forth the effort I needed to start burning fat and raising my metabolism to help me from the inside out.   And 21 days later I was 6 pounds and 9.5 inches smaller and on my way to being healthier, happier, and more confident.  It was then that I made the decision to become a coach because I had found a solution that works and it was like the Fountain of Youth…I just needed to share it with everyone so they could see results, too.

Fast foward to today and here’s a quick recap of my accomplishments over the past 365 days, of which I’m pretty darn proud…

–I completed three dedicated rounds of the 21 Day Fix
–I nailed the 14-week Focus T25 program (Alpha, Beta, and Gamma)
–I dabbled in a TurboFire/PiYo hybrid while training for the half
–Oh yeah…I trained 12 weeks for and completed a half marathon (with no walking)
–I am three days from completing the 60 day Les Mills Combat program
–I am about to start 21 Day Fix Extreme on Monday, March 2nd
–I now coach 133 people and lead a team of 11 coaches
-I have lost 49.1 pounds and 36 inches.
-I went from a size 18 to a size 10; XL to medium.
-I have more confidence, I’m healthier,  I have plenty of energy to complete my tasks, my body is able to handle more than it ever could, and I’m happier.

And my journey is not over yet. No, I didn’t quite make it to fifty pounds before my one year, like I had imagined, but with everything else that I’ve gained (and lost) this year, I could hardly be disappointed in myself.  I’ve worked really hard, but played really hard, too.  I’m not perfect.  I make mistakes.  And I’ll be the first to admit that some of the choices I make still aren’t the healthiest.  But I make it work and I know how to reel it back in and get back on track.  This isn’t just a diet or a 21 day program…it’s a lifestyle.  And I’m never going back.

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