Thursday, October 31, 2013
I'm totally here. I'm going strong again.
Last week was an unexpected pause. I went to Atlantic City on Monday afternoon and got back on Tuesday afternoon. I think I attended a Pilates class that Thursday, but was generally getting sick throughout the few days after my mini-vacation. I took a yoga class on Saturday which was nice and relaxing. Other than that, no gym time.
I'm still sick, but I've started Phase 2 of the Drop 2 Sizes program. I completed Strength 1 on Monday and Strength 2 last night. They are TOUGH. Definitely a step up in intensity. Even the warm-up is longer and more challenging. Strength 1 includes: prone jackknife (done this one and improved SO much), push press with dumbbell, offload squat (in this one you hold a dumbbell in one hand off center, which creates instability and forces you to engage more muscles), one leg deadlift row (Um, Crazy hard!), pushups, and THE WORST FINISHING MOVE EVER. It's an isometric lunge where you start by hoping into a reverse lunge, then, keeping your front engaged leg...welll...engaged, you push through into a front lunge. Then back again. This goes on for twenty seconds, and then you hold in the reverse lunge. I mean....IT JUST BURNS. Then you reverse legs, which is super sweet. Not.
Last night's workout included a few moves that I love, and one move that I HATE. The elevated split squat is just bananas. I am so much stronger on one leg than the other, I can't even position myself properly on the bench I need to elevate my leg on. The gym was full and I was embarassed. I tried to go as low as possible and I still felt the burn, but holy moly. I need to practice. The finishing move was a speed squat for twenty seconds, followed by hold at the bottom for twenty seconds.....
Did I mention I only did two sets of everything both days and was completely tapped out? Next workout, gotta bump everything up to three sets and not looking forward to it!
Yesterday I used my husband's very round and hard head as a foam roller for the outside of my thighs (DOMS,yo). Saved $20.00. I love marriage.
Speaking of marriage, I've been hiding some of my lulu purchases as of late. I'll have to update later. Off to do some work!
Thursday, October 17, 2013
Today, the prescribed breakfast is cottage cheese with fresh fruit....ain't nobody got time for that.
I am switching up the breakfast because I'm going to do my strength workout tonight and so the carbs are justified. Went with Kashi Go Lean cereal, 2% milk and half a banana. Would love to have planned ahead for the snack (two Laughing Cow cheeses and some baby carrots) but I pretty much turned off for the night after Pilates. Oh oh, and the strength workout is the last one like it. Start a new strength workout on Monday! No more lateral lunges! Yipee!
I dropped my husband off at the gym and jetted off to class with not a MINUTE to spare. Class had already started and some kind of weighted crunch was being performed. It did not look like fun, but I jumped right in. We spent the rest of the class on basic moves. Lady D (the brutish instructor I have talked about in the past) has been on a kick getting us to perform the mat version of Reformer/Tower exercises because she noticed many of us (me?) couldn't do them with proper form. What's interesting about all of this is that as instructors with a brand new studio, surely they knew that people who may or may not have experience would be taking the regular classes since there are no pre-requisite or 101's.
And, the instructors don't divide the classes by level either. So you can have an advanced person along a newbie in any class you take. Of course there are going to be people that suck! There is no filter for those people. It was almost offensive how she discussed the situation. She said that a lot of people just could not do the most basic things. Well, if we all started with the basics, this wouldn't be the case. Of course, if every class is all levels, there will be variation, so with this current set-up, she really can't complain.
Some of the basics we did variations of were the roll up, where you keep your legs flat on the mat and roll back, tucking your tailbone and curling into your tummy while also slowly peeling onto the mat, then rolling back up. Another basic was teaser on the mat. Teaser is probably one of the harder Pilates exercises, and I was first introduced and jumped right in in a tower class with this same instructor.
You start in this variation, rolling your legs and arms up in synchronicity. Then you can start moving your legs an inch up and down, and then your torso up and down. And then both together. It's bananas-crazy. And it's very hard to keep your legs locked and together, which is essential.
We finished out the class with some leg work which was killer, as usual. I've worked up into a purple spring on the second setting. The easiest is a yellow spring, followed by a yellow spring set a little higher, and then a purple spring set a little lower. Anyway, the whole series was either us pulling our legs down or to the sides. Midway through, we start lowering our legs all the way to the mat and locking them there. To keep them down with all that resistance is a task. You have to really lower your back into the mat to not injure yourself, and push against the poles with your arms. Then, you slowly move your leg in and out on either side, and finally end with circles. Gives me post traumatic stress just thinking about it. LOL.
I'm going to my mom's tonight to HOPEFULLY pick up my Off the Mat jacket. Since she's not home, I expect someone will leave it on her doorstep, which kind of sucks. Didn't think about that. She's usually home! Oh well. I'll get to spend some time with her and my sister. Should be great fun :).
I leave you with the new as yet to be widely released Forme Jacket II in COCO PIQUE!! It is stunning and I want one! If not Daily Yoga, than this one for sure.
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
I planned on doing a gym workout this morning and a Pilates class in the evening.
Well, I just got my monthly visitor and I am absolutely exhausted. One thing I am doing is listening to my body, so no double workout tonight.
I'll still be attending the Pilates class because not going means I owe them $10 (stupid 24 hour cancellation policy). I don't know how they do it. Lots of moms and women, some are bound to cancel are no-show and get mad about what they owe. Especially if they purchase a membership! At Barre 3, the cancellation policy means you don't lose out on money unless you cancel one hour before or less. And even at Lithe Method, the policy is more flexible. As you can see, I am in bitch mode. Don't mind me LOL.
In other news, I already owe $10 for the yoga class I didn't go to last night. An 8:30 pm class was a bad idea and I knew deep in my heart of hearts that I wouldn't go. I still scheduled it less than 24 hours before it was due to start. Ugh. I got home, made dinner for the husband (creamy Parmesan risotto with beef in sauteed mushrooms and Vidalia onions--the bomb). Took a little nap, changed into my Lulu, and re-plopped myself down on the couch. Next thing you know it was 9:30. On the computer, looking at those damn Speed tights. I fail.
Anyway...positives of today: it's almost 5:00. I want a nap so bad but I'll be going to class straight from the office. I need a nice little couch in here...that would be wonderful.
I also ate candy today.
Lots of it.
Splurge meal, for sure.
Felt moody so bought my first Run Swiftly long sleeve top and a matching mesh bag to wash it in the laundry with, since it's so delicate.
The color has a nice pique like texture to it. I hope it doesn't snag a lot. I would love to wear it to the gym or around town. And...the mesh bags should be awesome for hand wash only things. Plus, I accidentally signed up for Amazon Prime so I've been trying to use the two day shipping free thing. $10 bucks well spent, I think.
Here's my outfit from yesterday. I am LOVING the Full Tilt. I hope it washes well.
Sorry for the mess. Here's my first Crb. Fresh teal. Kind of love it and if it's been worn before, I can't tell. Must hold up nicely in the wash which I love!
My stomach pains are kicking in so Bon voyage for now.
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
A lot of people did not like this new Lulu upload but I saw a few things I would get if I had limitless income.
What I bought:
Ebb to Street tank in Green Bean.
I know that I have been wavering on the plum version of this tank but hear me out: I changed my mind. I actually love the plum tank. It bounces right back to shape even after I think it has stretched out. It's comfortable and flattering, too. I love this green color and think it will flatter my coloring and hair, and it looks good with black but also blue/inkwell colors. Husband approved as well.
What I want:
These Speed Tights in Luxtreme (inkwell/WAFS) are DYNAMITE. Since I am returning the Run Inspires with the September WAFS, I am HEAVILY considering these. However, I don't know if they will be flattering or sheer. I am dying to get to a store and investigate.
These Run for your Life crops are only available in Australia for now. I don't know why they keep alluding the USA but they are darling and if they WERE available, I would have a hard time deciding between them and the Speed tights. These are more practical because of the mesh in the back and my gym time. But the Speed tights will be more useful in the winter when it's colder.
The Raindrops Jacket. It's for running in the rain, obviously. Really cool details. The cuffins, concealable hood, ipod pocket, cute venting in the back and the sweet collar just...LOVE. I have no practical use for this jacket, but if there was a winter jacket that looked this cute, I would probably cave.
Star Runner pullover in hyperstripe.
This one is subtly beautiful, but again, the pullovers don't really seem like something I absolutely need. I wish I did more walking outside. Then I could justify lol.
Run for fun crops in soot.
I love the idea of these and they look cute on various people. But based on the Run Inspires I purchased, I would have to try these on. They might have that stiff feeling. I do like the mesh venting in the back.
There are other various things I am still wanting. I would love a Vinyasa scarf in black hyperstripe or plum hyperstripe. I would like one Swiftly long sleeve in a pretty color. And I think I will get some Wunder Unders in luxtreme full length around the holidays.
Other things I bought (but don't tell anyone) on eBay and the boards that haven't arrived:
No Limits tank in angel blue
CRB tank in black swan
Scoop neck tank in heathered black swan
CRB XL Caspian ziggy
CRB Fresh teal
Wunder Under crops in blue slub denim
Off the mat jacket in black
That's pretty bad.....I think this is going to catch up to me eventually....
Monday, October 14, 2013
Today was Jean Check-In #1 and I failed miserably.
I am so disappointed in myself and my results. I know that people lose weight from different areas, and after sitting pouty faced in the car and my husband pulling out a confession from me as to why I looked so miserable, he said I had definitely lost weight in my belly and shoulders. But I would really like my lower body to follow suit!
The jeans are just as tight and restrictive, no where close to getting up my hips.
I can't say I am blameless, though. I've been slipping diet wise, adding replacement meals that have no nutritional values simply for convenience. I can't blame it on Wawa, either. In the end, I made the choice to go inside and purchase the item.
Here's an example of my Friday and Saturday nutritionals (in reverse, because I'm dumb):
You can click to see it larger.
As you can see, the hoagie AND the oatmeal both in one day were probably not the best choices (to be fair though, in the plan, the breakfast did call for oatmeal and the lunch called for a wrap). I do realize that the sodium, sugar and carbs was way out of control, though, and won't be doing that again. Shabbat dinner that night was also kind of all over the place. I did try to reign in my portions but, things add up quickly, and I forgot to add to that diary entry that I had a few bites of cake, which probably added 100 calories of nothingness. Shabbat dinner was the first place I knew I would have problems on this thing. It is HARD to not underestimate what I am putting into my mouth since I did not prepare it and my MIL has a HEAVY hand with condiments and salty things.
Saturday was truly awful. We went and saw Machete 2 (would not recommend) and gorged on Nerds rope, popcorn and pretzels. I really should have not finished off that day with eggs/sausage but was ravenous and figured it was better than a sandwich.
In good news though, I still committed to my workouts even with various wrenches thrown in my path. Husband again avoided the gym on Friday. No problem. After Shabbat dinner, I did a Strength #1 workout at home. I was sooo tired by the end (it was around 10 p.m. or so) so I did cut short on the lateral lunges and the overhead presses. I'll take 80% done after that longggg Friday.
Saturday I took a yoga class with my husband's cousin and it was VERY restorative. We would love to go again. This class was classified as "gentle" but both of us agreed that it did work our muscles. I am curious about vinyasa and hot yoga, but am still too much of a wuss to try more strenuous types of yoga. I would probably take a more rigorous one with our instructor, though. She was very helpful and peaceful....crunchy but cute LOL.
I wore my new Ebb to Street pants (wonderous) and an ebay score-the Pure Focus tank in lilac. Topped with a Voyage hoodie in cool breeze, Target Converse sneakers and scarf.
Sunday I woke up at the butt crack of dawn (7:30 a.m. my time hahahah) to take an 8:00 Reformer class with my favorite brusque instructor. I did not like this class so much. We started out on the mats, completing a series of challenging moves. The instructor told us that mat work brings out all of our faults and weaknesses, and this was completely true. A lot of the moves aggravated my back. Like the elevated shoulder bridges and swan dives.
We then spent the other half of class doing these same sets of moves on the Reformer, to show us how helpful the machine is in making up and helping our weaknesses. Absolutely correct in every way. For the shoulder bridges, we hung halfway off the carriage (our waists were the first meeting point) as our butts met the springs on the Reformer. We placed our feet on the foot rest and had to bridge from this position then lower and return the carriage inward. Then repeat in reverse. REALLY difficult. Certainly a strenuous class. I think I prefer the tower class with this instructor and maybe I'll continue to do another class on Sundays that is less vigorous on my back.
After class, I wanted to stop by T.J. Maxx to see if there were any steals to be had in athletic gear, since my new favorite pair of pants is by Kyodan and $25.00. The website claimed they opened at 10:00, but when I called, after waiting half an hour, it turns out they open at 11:00 on Sundays! BOOO! I called Old Navy just down the block and they opened at 10:00, so I spent a good amount of time in there.
Old Navy actually has a great athletic line, although far less breathable because of the polyester content. I almost bought a spin-off version of a Lululemon No Limits tank but the whole thing was polyester through and through, and I sweat like a crazy person in 100% polyester, so I passed.
This one was very flattering and not quite as voluminous as the No Limits. The back was a little different with a vented detail. I might come back for this one. There were so many available though, so no rush. Maybe it will go on sale? Haha.
I bought some slouchy sweaters to pair with leggings or skinnies (two on the left). $10 each is not bad and I won't feel so bad if they fall apart. The last picture is of a Cynthia Rowley top I almost purchased at T.J. Maxx. Cute detail but in the end, I didn't like the space dye effect. Would have loved it in solid gray though.
By the way, the jeans on the left are clearance Old Navy. My mom texted me that they were too funny looking, but they were a size 12 and they fit, which made me super happy :).
Finally, I went to DSW. I should stop doing that. I walked out with the black babies. They are just TOO hot for words. Too much. I did like the Rampage camel color booties. I am still assessing what I would wear with them. Besides my light colored leather jacket by Vince, I'm always in black and don't know if it would clash. Oh, and yes, I did wear my Ebb to Streets two days in a row LOL.
The rest of the day was spent with my mom and dad. We visited the cemetery to see some of my grandparents. We stopped by my grandma's and had lunch (and I had some NOT needed chocolate and sweets). They left me in the car while they popped into a Russian grocery store. Then we came home and my mom and I watched Homeland and The Blacklist while I gorged on two much guacamole and Cheeze-Its. Decided to skip dinner as a result.
I came home to my hubby watching football (a regular Sunday is ALL day football) and finally got around to making the flank steak. It was DELICIOUS and I'll be making a flank salad tonight with feta, baby spinach, some carmelized onions, balsamic and olive oil. Yummmm.
I finished out the weekend with the metabolic workout I was supposed to do on Saturday instead of yoga. Last time I talked about this workout, I was only supposed to do three rounds. At the time, I couldn't imagine three more rounds of it. But last night, I did six total rounds! I really had to push myself not to stop. It would have been so easy to say, "Next time I'll do six, this time I'll do four or five". But after all the food this weekend, I at least wanted to accomplish something difficult.
My heart was racing but I made it through. I'm pretty achy today but I feel great for doing it! I think I might add a three round interval session like this to my Tuesdays. This is an option in the book and I never considered doing it, but it's easy enough to do at home and definitely effective.
I'm going to go check out my Pilates schedule for this week. I'm beginning to think overloading my schedule is causing me to feel overwhelmed.
Have a great day, everyone!
Thursday, October 10, 2013
Today is as slow as molasses. My goodness.
Last night I took a killer Pilates class. Arms, legs, abs. Eerthing. We did some crazy ab work. My instructor (who I love and hate) was discussing the benefits of really controlled breath (obviously, one of the key principles in Pilates). She explained that holding one's breath does not engage the abs at all. Instead, they (and she meant me LOL) should concentrate on swift and hard breaths out. Two inhales in, two seconds hard inhale out to contract and engage the abs. It sounds pretty easy. I mean, it's just...breathing. Right?
WRONG. Controlling your breath like this during an ab series is murder. The last move, a side crunch, involved starting with our legs in table top, then alternating which leg went out and also moving one elbow or the other toward the edge of the mat on either side. While holding for two breathes and breathing out for two. As slow as possible. I mean. I have no words. My stomach felt like it was cramping and on fire all at once. The girl next to me got a scary sharp side pain and stopped. Serious bidness.
At the end of class, the instructor commented as I was leaving that I was "getting a little bit more flexible". I will take any compliment I can get from her as she can be very no-nonsense to the point where she comes of brusque. I thought to myself after...what is "a little more". What's the benchmark? The first time I was in her class? The last few times? What is she comparing it to? When I first started, I could barely keep my legs in tabletop while doing crunches. I lived in fear of pulling my back out. Now I'm doing monkey poses and getting through an entire ab series.
The dreaded monkey pose don't scare me anymore.
What maybe little to her is huge for me! I did this on Sunday:
Sure it was brief and laborious to do this for five seconds but...it still counts!
Completing She is the most challenging instructor though, so I'll keep coming, and hopefully she keeps noticing how hard I am working!
I wore my Ebb to Street tank and although the cut is pretty flattering, I just don't get the rave reviews. I'm really considering selling it, as it stretches out and pools at the stomach. I do like the bewbie padding but, I don't know. It's just not impressing me.
My WUP's in coco pique reverse came to my mom's house and I'll probably be swinging by tonight to trade as she purchased a fresh teal Forme that came to my house. It's such a gorgeous jacket. I'm glad she caved. I'm slowly but surely creating a monster! Hahahha. She recently bought a No Limits Tank and Ta Ta Tamer bra too! And she is lusting for an Off the Mat. LOL. Oh mama. Sorry for what I've done!
I don't know how the pants will fit. Since I bought these Kyodans, I've realized I just don't really love that soft textured tight feeling. I like something more compressive. If it's not compressive it at least has to be breathable. Maybe these will be an easy pass. If they are, I'm heavily heavily considering my first CRB Xl (for extra long) in this caspian ziggy pattern, which is kind of purple. I am kind of in love and happened across it reading a thread in the boards.
With the rate I'm going, I'll probably have a little something of everything and then be TOTALLY over it by my birthday LOL.
Tonight, I'm also going to make some DELICIOUS flank steak. I used the one below last time and it was awesome. C/o Simple Recipes.
Quick and Easy Pan-Fried Flank Steak Recipe
That's all for now. Good night everyone!
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
I completed my first home workout after a not-so-trustworthy husband of mine decided he was too tired to go to the gym before work, and too tired to go to the gym after work. Such is the life of someone who plays Grand Theft Auto until 3 a.m. in the morning. And yes, I could have gone by myself but decided I could do everything in Workout A in the comforts of my bedroom. And so it began!
We have a 15 pound weight gathering dust and so that was my kryptonite for the whole workout. Over all, it only made my high pull less difficult as I am supposed to use two weights for those. My lateral lunge was WAY harder and I was dripping sweat by the end of the workout. At various points, I was negotiating to get through that last, third set. I don't know why it was so much more difficult to do it at home, but it was. I finished out with speed squats and I paid attention to my form, REALLY sitting back. My glutes were crying for mercy.
Yesterday was relatively uneventful. Lunch called for chicken salad but I have been slipping in food prep and went with a Wawa chicken salad snack pack instead. The macros were pretty much spot on and I actually really liked the flavors (crackers helped lol). I knew I would be going to my grandma's for a girl's night later, so I tried to keep it light. Good thing, because I gorged on all the things. My sister and mom made a most excellent buffalo chicken dip (tortilla chips were in abundance) and there was also all kinds of candies and cakes. Sigh....it was fun though! Splurge meal, represent!
I forgot to mention that I received a few Lulu things in the mail (but also sold another pair of pants and a work it out top so...I'm getting better!)
Things I actually did recently: Had a angel blue Define delivered yesterday by USPS. Got the mail very late at night so no one (ahem, hubby) would notice. Have two packages waiting for me at home from lulu.com. Asked my sister to swing by my house (she lives three minutes away) so she can grab them off the porch. Having a pair of WUPs delivered to my mom's house. I'm acting like a criminal and the protagonist of the Confessions of a Shopaholic books. What is my life?
This was the status I posted in the Lulu Chat board and it was surprising to see how many ladies can relate. I don't feel so alone! LOL.
The Angel Blue Define is divineeeee. So in love with it. It's mighty soft!
My outfit of the day on Tuesday (Urbanite Blazer) with American Eagle crops and my new Full Tilt in plum on the right. I love it. Like, a lot a lot.
I also caved and bought a pair of Kyodan leggings ($25 bucks is....a great price lately!). Every lady in my family now owns a pair and these will be lounge pants most likely.
These are the Lulu inspires pants and I am tentative about them. I don't know if I purchased the wrong size, but I don't find these compressive at all. I do ADORE Run Inspires and they would be a nice addition since I wear my black ones so much. I love the print and they are pretty neutral, but maybe the fit is off? I also noticed that these are a tiny bit sheer, but I usually wear longish tops at the gym, so maybe it's not a problem. I don't know. My hoard mentality says keep them because they are sold out and I may want them later. The struggle! LOL.
Unfortunately, my mom tried these on and accidentally sent the tag flying off so now I can't return them online. I would have to sell them on one of the boards, which is not much a problem but kind of inconvenient since I told her to be careful! lol.
The worst news is that...I'm set to purchase an Off the Mat jacket. It truly is my #1 most wanted Lululemon item. I just wish I spaced out all my purchases. This is what makes me want to sell the pants (and return the Ebb to Streets even if they look amazing). Decisions, decisions. I will most likely return my recently acquired sexy booties from DSW, too. That makes me tear up a little, but where would I wear them anyway?
The collar just gives me LIFE!!!
I pretty much am agreeing to buy it for $30 dollars over retail. But...it's perfection. And now my mom (of course) wants one too.
Doing a Pilates class tonight instead of going to the gym, so I'll have to hit up the gym tomorrow and Friday. Or maybe I'll skip Friday, do Workout B on Saturday and the metabolic on Sunday? Pilates is making my scheduling at the gym a little tougher, but oh well.
Oh and I forgot my soy-sauce drenched bible in my sister's car so I'll have to pick that up tonight. I'm a mess and I feel naked without it!