Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The secret of the Track

The three top excuses I hear for not exercising are: Time, Money and Kids.  So today I'm going to take all these excuses out of the equation for you.
This past Monday I needed to finish up some challenges for the competition I was in.  The result was a fun day for me and my kids, and a new Monday tradition.
We went to our local high school to do some timed runs.  My intentions were to run one mile and go home.  We stayed for two hours exercising and having fun.
Working out at the track and field is great for mommies. Its free fist off, kid friendly and you can workout at your own pace and level and on your own time.

So here is what we did:
I started out with my timed run, I did two miles.  I used a stroller to put my kids in while I  ran, that way I could run with out distractions.  After that it's the kids turn to run.  I pulled the kiddos out and off they went.  This was the perfect pace for my cool-down.
Next it was time for fun and calisthenics.  The field had a giant tire there that was perfect for mischievous play for my boys.  While they played inside, and on top.  I did one legged squats on the tire (can be done in the bleachers too), and then push-ups.
It was getting hot so time for a break.  We went up into the bleachers, found some shade and ate our Cliff Kids Bars and drank water.  We were now fueled, rested and ready for more.
Up next was timed sit-ups and crunches.  See how many you can do in one minute.  I thought these would be easy.  But they proved to be more challenging than expected.  My goal was to smash the Marine Corp Physical Fitness Test quota.  Which was minimum of 50 in one minute.  I got to 45 my fist go, so I had to keep trying until I could beat it.

We topped it off with some elevated latter runs: forwards, backwards and sideways.  This was fun to play "chase" in.  I had to run through and get my kids and put them into the discus cage.  Tell them not to escape and when they do repeat the whole thing: run through the latter pick them up and put them in the cage (or you can use any area on field, a number, line, soccer net)
We had lots of fun and blasted tons of fat because I was getting my heart rate way way up and then bringing it down to take care of my kids or other such things.  Next time I will bring lots of water!
Other Moms picked up on the secrets of the track too.  While we were there three other families came.  Two of them came together, put a big blanket out on the filed with toys and did laps on the track, ran stairs on the bleachers, did strength training exercises etc.  And they were all different shapes and sizes.  Do what you can as hard as you can.  If all you can do is walk do it!  It's a lot more and a lot faster than what the couch potatoes are doing (nothing).
Tell your kids your going to the race track to practice going really fast like Lighting McQueen.
(that's what my 4-year-old told me)
Get into a fun mood and enjoy a day exercising with your kids.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Snack Your Way Thin

Did you know that snacks are important to a healthy and efficient body? Eating 5-6 times a day balances blood sugar, preserves lean muscle, and boost metabolism.  
I can always tell when I haven't eaten my snacks because by lunch time my head feels a bit light, and I'm really snappy because I feel like if I don't eat in the next second I'll feint. 
Snacking WHEN DONE RIGHT, is so beneficial.  Here are some of my favorite non-perishable snacks I always keep in my purse so if I'm on the go a snack time I'm OK and still eating right.  And these snacks are great for you or your kids...

Beef jerky, high in protein low in fat and calories.  I love, love jerky! I eat it all the time.
These are great, they are a baked energy/snack bar.  They are marketed towards kids but are perfect for adults too.  They are a smaller portion than traditional snack and energy bars at 120 calories, making it just the right size for snacks.  Also they are not as "chewy" as other bars are. All ingredients are natural and they past the taste test by my two boys (and me too).  When buying these in bulk they are also economical.
 When I'm really watching my weight, what I eat etc. I do protein shakes.  The body needs a lot of protein especially when you want to preserve your lean muscle.  I usually just throw a scoop in my shaker bottle and be on my way.  But I saw these on sale for $1 a piece (had to buy in bulk though) and thought they would be great for when I'm in a rush.  It's not really made of milk so it doesn't have to be refrigerated until it's opened.  The taste is average, nothing special.  But for the price I think way worth it.
This is another snack bar, this one marketed toward women because its fortified with calcium, folic acid, vitamin D and iron.  This one is a larger serving than the kids cliff bar but doesn't raise the calories too extensively, 180 calories.  It also has a lot more protein 8g.  These do have more of a chalky taste though, not bad, just a hint of it.  My favorite flavor is chocolate peppermint.

 SunMaid raisins, I'm picky about my raisins. These are naturally sweet, perfect for a pick-me-up.  I will put these in a small container or usually I get the small serving size boxes.

And for when I'm at home these are some of my favorites.

Natural apple sauce, which really tastes good. Fresh fruit, yogurt, cheese peanut butter and celery, raisins, beef jerky, protein shakes, fun salads.  
The idea behind snacks is to fuel your body with things it needs so ideally your eating healthy things that you miss at meals or don't get enough of like maybe protein and veggies.
Also don 't for get that with snacking you need to really watch your portion control at meals.  Eat smaller portions to balance out the extra calories you've eaten in your snacks. 
 This is good for the metabolism, weight loss and management.  It teaches your metabolism to always be working and running, as opposed to stressing like after a large meal.  This gives you a constant supply of energy which means you feel better and are burning calories more efficiently.
That's how you can loose weight and eat more and all the time.  As opposed to huge calorie reductions which will shut the metabolism down and put your body in starvation mode.  Which is when the body does not get enough nutrients so it holds on to anything it already has i.e. your fat.  Because that is what will keep you alive the longest.
So in short snack are good and OK just choose wisely what you eat and how much so your helping your body not hindering it.

Monday, June 11, 2012

The Athlete of Life

   This competition has got me a little sentimental and so determined in my mind to be better and stronger than I've been before.  But at times it's hard, really hard.  So if any on you need a pick-me-up, a soap box spill to be healthier, happier stronger, here it is...
   No matter what people tell you, remember you are in charge not them, not your excuses.  I heard the greatest quote...
We are capable of so much but often we sell our selves short be cause of opposition wither it be from life or from others...
We are strong and will be stronger still, for ourselves and those around us.  Because adversity does not come on the count of 3 or the sound of a buzzer.  Life requires you to be strong at all times.  So we choose to motivate ourselves to be better, healthier, fit.  So when adversity does strike we can meet it with equal and even grater force.

And because we can lead from behind. Energy is required to be in front.  We will show the way, be a light for our families, friends, our community.

We will carry those in need. We will go the extra mile...for others.
We are women. We are the athletes of life.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Kind of Crazy

So I've decided to do something kind of crazy!
I have joined a national fitness completion.  It's the Under Armour What's Beautiful Challenge.

There are 19 challenges to complete, some easy some more difficult, like take the Marine Corp Physical Fitness test and crush any part of it. We're also supposed to declare a goal to have achieved by the end of the competition.  Mine is to define my muscles, loose body fat and show the world what women are made of.
So fun and crazy, BUT the only down side  is most people have been working at this for a few months and I've joined late so I only have a few weeks before the first elimination!!!!
Yikes, that means I've got to work extra hard extra fast. I usually teach lifestyle fitness. Which means no crash diets unrealistic workout sessions multiple times a day ect.   Because these things don't last long, it's not healthy to be on a low carb diet for a long time.  And who has time for multiple workout sessions?  Most people start these things get frustrated and quit. That is why lifestyle changes are so important.  They are steps taken to change your life, with real and permanent solutions.   The outcome is a happy healthy and balance person, for life.
But I'm going to go agents all that because I'm so short on time. So the next few posts will be about the competition.  First I'll share with you my part one of my quick-loss game plan:

Give it a try if you're already into fitness but if you're a beginner I wouldn't recommend this. 
Step 1- rev up my workouts.  Make them stronger, harder, more meaningful.
Step 2- add a second workout most days of the week if not all of them.  What I've been doing is jump rope sessions- which is great for the abs, weights, and running.
Step 3- Practice push-ups every day!!! I've got to nail some serious push-ups.
Step 4- Eat 6 times a day.  I do snack but these need to be more structured and meaningful adding in lots of protein so my body eats that instead of muscle with all my exercise.  And no Junk! I cheated last night!!! AHHH, I've got to cut the crud.
So that is where I'm at for this week.  If anyone wants to join the competition let me know and I'll send you details.
If any of you can shoot me a comment on encouragement and motivation I would totally love it!