Category Archives: fitness

Just Do It: This Week I Will 21

One of the most often reflected upon memories of my 2014 half marathon training is the way I adopted a just do it mindset.  I didn’t think of it as such at the time, but I remember specifically realizing to myself in one moment early in the training cycle, “I want to be a person who runs 3-4 times a week.  And the only thing I need to do in order to become that person is run 3-4 times a week.”

It was, and is!, so simple, but at the time it totally shifted my perspective of my running journey.

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Since the realization, which originally appeared mid-run, I’ve repeated the concept to myself about any number of characteristics and habits I want to adopt or strengthen. 

I’ve been feeling in a funk for the last several months. 
This is not the first funk, and I am sure it will not be the last.
Over time I’ve learned what I need when these seasons creep up in my life.

Eventually I reach a point where I’m ready for forward motion and the best way for forward motion to stick in my life is to set a goal and make a plan.

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Last week I reflected on my “all I need to do to do it is to do it” mindset as I started Couch to 5K (C25K) for what seems like the 27th time.  I first began running with this training program, which is designed to help newbie runners work up to a 30 minute run without stopping,over 7 years [!!!] ago.  Since then I’ve re-started the program several times, either after running hiatuses or as a conditioning method to increase my race times.

Along with setting a goal and making a plan, sharing my plan is one of the habits that has helped me make forward motion in the past. And thus, I arrive back to this THS space to share what I’m planning to conquer week to week.

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This Week I Will

A weekly post of healthy-intention goals for the sake of accountability; [inspired long ago by Jess and her #sayitdoit style]

HYDRATE! Upping my hydration game is always the first place I point my focus when setting healthy intentions because it is almost always a game changer in helping me FEEL better once I start increasing my water drinking. It’s a habit that is easy for me to re-establish, but also easy for me to fall away from, which is where I have been the past few weeks.  I’ve printed out a new hydration tracking page to keep on my desk at the office.  It’s genuinely impressive to me how much more water I drink when I keep this in view and make refilling my water glass a priority. [I am NOT too busy to fill my water glass.] 

Log some miles. My boss-friend Jenn and I have been walking 4+ miles several times a week for most of the summer and early fall.  We’ve got a few walking dates planned for this week, plus I want to get the next 3 workouts of my Couch to 5K planning checked off before the weather turns ultra cold and snowy. I’ve started tracking on Daily Mile again; anyone else log their workouts there?

Do two strength workouts. It doesn’t matter how long. It doesn’t matter what type. Commit to spending time twice this week working my muscles and just do it.

Take time to do something creative. In the past few months I’ve definitely noticed that I’m a happier human when I take time to create throughout the week.  Sometimes that means coloring as we watch TV after dinner.  Other times I might play with craft supplies or doodle what’s on my mind. 

Read. Last month I decided to set a goal to read one novel before the end of the year.  Everything I’d been reading prior had been nonfiction or short form and I felt like I wanted to branch out.  Since then I’ve started Meg Wolitzer’s This is My Life, after her novel The Interestings being one of my favorites to get lost in the pages of time and time again.  As of now I’m only a couple of chapters in, but I plan to make some progress this week.

What healthy intentions are you setting for the week?  Tell me about them on twitter and show me the proof on Instagram by using the #Make1HealthyDecision hashtag!

This Week I Will 10

A weekly post of healthy-intention goals for the sake of accountability; [inspired long ago by Jess and her #sayitdoit style]

A review of last weeks goals: This is my first This Week I Will post in a while, but I reintroduced the weekly healthy intention setting method into my life about a month ago. Last week my goals were three-fold and mega-simple.

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Do 1 strength workout and 2 cardio workouts. Achieved, thanks to two long walks and a tabatta workout in the living room.

Add some yoga. Two, short but completed, sessions of yoga by Christmas tree light were lovely.

Get freggie with it! I bought some of my favorite fruit and veggie short cuts to make sure I ate them, because I’ve really been lacking in the produce intake lately.  Olivia’s spring mix for easy greens, plus grape tomatoes and baby carrots which were both on sale at the market.  I also purchased a bottle of the new V8 veggie blends, Purple Power, for a mega-shortcut of veggie nutrients.

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This Week I Will

Drink lots of water. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: This is one of those healthy intentions that I can totally rock – as long as I make sure to say I’m going to rock it.  I never have a problem drinking water when I actively make it a goal, and with all the holiday treats around, extra H2O will be a gift to my body.

Eat a freggie first.  Speaking of holiday treats, they are everywhere and I haven’t said no very often when it comes to all the candy, baked goods and snacks around the office and THS HQ.  Instead of focusing on “NO!” I’m trying something else.  For the sake of getting more nutrient richness into my mouth, I’m going to focus on eating a fruit or vegetable before I eat anything else each time I’m reaching for a meal or snack.  A clementine before the almond M&M’s at work, a salad before my sandwich, or carrots pre-caramel corn.  I may fill up faster, causing me to eat fewer bites of the less-nutritious options, of course, but basically I’m just prioritizing my eating with healthy bites first, followed by more decadent foods.

Complete four at-home workouts. And because it’s best if I have a plan, I’m looking at these bam-a-ma-jams! >>

  • Get Your Active on Tabata Workout via Coffee Cake and Cardio, it’s one of my favorite at-home workouts from a blog I’ve ever tried. I go back to this one often!
  • Slowed Down Core Workout via In Fitness and In Health, because focusing on slow and calm seems to be the great counterbalance to hustle and bustle
  • Hold it Workout from The Lean Green Blog, I’ve been saving this one in my “to try” folder since 2012!
  • and this Dumbbell & Body Weight Workout I collected board-style via the exercise demos on SparkPeople.

Enjoy my Staycation – The Remix. This week will begin another 11-days-away-from-the-office stint [I had 10 days off in a row in October an it was glorious!] and I plan to both a) do all the things! and b) spend every morsel of my being in deep rest and relaxation mode.

What healthy intentions are you setting for the week?  Tell me about them on twitter and show me the proof on Instagram by using the #Make1HealthyDecision hashtag!

#THSGetsFaster Week 8

This “Easy as Breeze” post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk as as part of my participation in the Blue Diamond Tastemakers Program. For more “Easy As Breeze” recipes made with five ingredients or less, visit Almond Breeze on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

smoothie

In the spring of 2015 I set out with a goal to get speedy, aiming to PR each of the common race distances I’ve crossed the finish of thus far [5K, 5-mile, 10K, 15K, half marathon]. I decided to document the process of my training, hoping that it will help to keep me accountable to train strong.  Up first, I’m chasing the train to 5K PR city – currently at 29:35.  This is week eight.

Monday July 20 – Sunday July 26
Total Miles Planned: “put on my shoes and run some miles, at least once before the weekend and at least once during the weekend.” – #THSGetsFaster Week 7
Total Miles Ran: 3.3 ran // 3 walked // and I made my goal of running once before the weekend and once during the weekend, too.

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Favorite Run: Sunday I did a half mile walk for both my warm up and cool down, with 2.3 miles of wogging intervals. I kept with 5 minutes jogging to 2 minutes walking and ran each interval as prescribed.  It was hot and sticky, and I got sweaty in about 37 seconds of running, but there was a slight breeze as I ran that definitely helped the experience.

Least Favorite Run: Thursday night I walked two miles and then REALLY had to talk myself into running one, too.  I just ran steady to get it over with and when it was done, I was DONE.  Some times when I set out just for one mile, I end up finding my groove and running a few before calling it quits.  But other days you just aren’t having it, ya know? Thursday I wasn’t haven’t it.

Other Workouts: Post run stretching on Sunday and a few walks around the neighborhood, but only one on Thursday was fitness-focused.

Listening Notes: I have a long backlog of all my favorite podcasts after having house guests this month.  I was catching up on Extra Hot Great and Pop Culture Happy Hour while I ran last week.

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Fueling Notes:  It’s no secret I love fall running, but running in the summer heat has become a much more manageable habit now that I’ve found some things that work well for me. One thing that helps me on my quest to cool down is my post-run smoothie.  It’s key for me to keep these SIMPLE and the recipe below totally fits in the “Easy as Breeze” celebration Almond Breeze is hosting this month.

After talking with Melissa about whey protein powder during our Protein Partners podcast episodes [you can find them here if you’re looking: #1, #2, & #3] I finally purchased a few small packets I found at CVS when looking for something to get for Nick’s Mom, Kathleen, to use in her daily breakfast smoothies while she was visiting.  I was pleased to see that my local CVS had four flavors in individual serving packets – chocolate, vanilla, cookies & cream, and strawberry.

I only use half a packet of the powder in this smoothie, because paired with the protein in the Chobani, I hit my goal of 26-30 grams without needing to use the entire packet.  I also like to add a Stok Espresso shot if it’s a weekend smoothie and morning run, as I prepare to kick-butt on my To-Do List.

Post-Run Pre-Productivity Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 1 medium frozen banana
  • 6 ounces Greek yogurt of choice [I used Chobani 0% vanilla with these]
  • 1 shot of espresso
  • 1/2 serving of chocolate whey protein powder
  • Chocolate Almond Breeze

Instructions

  • Break frozen banana in 4-5 pieces and place in single serve blender cup.
  • Add yogurt, espresso, and protein powder.
  • Add Almond Breeze to fill line.
  • Blend until combined. 
  • Optional re-blend: I find that once everything is blended I can add a bit more liquid and re-blend for a thinner, smoother consistency. 

EASY BREEZY!

#THSGetsFaster Reflections: I did get around to writing out a #THSGetsFaster Phase 2 training plan for the next eight weeks. The truth is, I know I do better when I have a plan laid out with the intention of “crossing off” each run as I conquer it. 

I’m keeping things pretty low-key with week one, looking at 9 miles total spread through four runs.  I’m sticking to the 1 long run, 1 race-specific speed training run, and 2 “easy” runs each week.  I definitely want to add strength and yoga, too, but know that piling on too many goals can totally sabotage my motivation.