Tag Archives: jamie eason live fit

LiveFit Trainer: Week 4

6 Dec

I woke up this morning feeling a bit groggy, but after two rest days in a row, I was eager to get back to the gym. After a cup of coffee, half of an apple and some pistachios, I was ready to go!

week 4 day 22

I can’t help but be very proud of myself today. This is the first time I’ve really stuck with a weight training plan. I’m also on my final week of “no cardio” – I’m excited to start back up, but I haven’t necessarily been missing it. The one thing I do miss is being a sweaty mess after a workout. Although I do huff and puff, sweat and feel shaky muscles after these workouts, I’m not dripping with sweat and I kind of miss that.

The #Elf4Health challenge for today was to lift weights, and do an exercise you’ve never done before. Although I’ve done all of these exercises, I did do something new: I used the Smith Machine rather than just using a free barbell for my squats. I had a discussion with my friend Shane last week about how I used a 50 lb barbell for squats, and even though I knew I could use more weight than that, I was intimidated by the Smith Machine. He said that if he were me, he would be more afraid of using a heavy barbell that he had to lift over his head, and it was a good point, so I went for it. So much better! I was able to really feel the burn on my squats, and it turns out there was no reason to be intimidated.

I’m seeing some great improvements in my body from the LiveFit Trainer — I’ve noticed that my arms are looking more toned, and I definitely think I’ve lost an inch here or there. I haven’t measured myself yet (I was going to re-measure after week 4 is over), but I have lost about a pound and a half. I don’t really put my weight (pun not intended) on the number on the scale though, when you’re trying to build muscle mass and lose fat, the scale can be deceiving.

One really happy thing that happened today was when I walked into the weight room, several people said “Hi!” and greeted me by name. It’s clear you’re becoming a regular at the gym when people remember you. ūüôā Here’s the plan for the rest of the week:

Friday: Back/Biceps
Saturday: Chest/Triceps (and then I’m going to cheat and go to my Bootcamp class, because I love it and miss it)
Sunday: Legs (again!)
Monday: Shoulders/Abs
Tuesday: Rest Day
Wednesday: Rest Day
Thursday: Phase 2 Begins! Cardio + Back

I’ll try to post another update on Wednesday, after I’ve done my measurements. I can say that if you have thought about doing this program, you should give it a try! I know a lot of people shy away from it because of the “No cardio for 4 weeks” thing, but I think it’s a perfect training plan for right after a big race or something, when your body could use a break from all the cardio. I also think people are afraid of ‘losing’ their cardio conditioning, but I don’t think 4 weeks is going to make you slower or take your endurance down! In fact, I really feel like I could run fast and long right now ūüôā

After the gym, I prepped my second breakfast, lunch and snacks for the day. I was in the mood for something different for breakfast today, so I decided to break out the old Oatmeal. I haven’t had oatmeal for breakfast in ages, because eggs have more staying power in my opinion. So, I added an egg white to my oatmeal:

oatmeal

This was delicious! I cooked the oats in a cup of almond milk and pumpkin pie spice. I stirred in the egg white and the apples and let it cook a while longer. Then I sprinkled it with some stevia. Yum! Hopefully I won’t get hungry again in an hour ūüôā

This is a good opportunity to talk about the nutrition plan that goes along with LiveFit. I’m not following it. I feel like I could give you a better assessment of the plan if I were following the nutrition and supplement guide, but it’s unrealistic for me. First of all, I don’t eat like a fitness model, and I don’t really have any desire to do so. I like carbs, and I feel like you can eat healthy, and build muscle, with a carbohydrate rich diet. Secondly, I don’t have the money to spend on the endless supplements that serious weight trainers use. So, that part of the plan isn’t realistic, but I think it’s important to note that I am seeing the results I desire. I can feel the muscle that I’m building, my clothes are fitting better, and I feel great.

One last note, and I apologize that this post is getting lengthy. Last night, I got my new Oxygen magazine (hooray!) and there was an article about how weight training can help you stave off the common cold. I certainly hope that is true, because Zach has been sick with a bad cold all week and I have managed to stay away from it (so far!). Knock on wood!

Question of the Day:
Have you ever followed a weight training plan? 

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I’m an #Elf4Health

28 Nov

Boy, am I loving the #Elf4Health challenge! It has really pushed me to get back on track with my health and fitness.

Yesterday was hard, you guys. As I have mentioned a few times here, I have put on a few pounds since August. Ok, let’s be honest: I’ve gained approximately 7 pounds since August. A little more than 2 lbs a month. Things that I know I can do to combat the weight gain: Track my calories, increase my weight training and¬†decrease¬†my cardio (i.e., running). I know that last one sounds¬†counterintuitive, but when I’m running a lot, I get hungry, and when I’m hungry, I eat. I will not starve myself!

Anywho, yesterday I woke up at 3:00 AM feeling just….terrible about myself. Negative thoughts were racing through my head and I just felt bad about myself. I have no idea why my negative thoughts choose to manifest themselves at 3:00 AM, but it’s quite annoying. I decided that it was time to use the skills that I¬†already have¬†to get rid of the extra weight. Luckily, the #Elf4Health Challenge is in full swing!

 

It’s nice to have people cheering you on, so I’m grateful for this challenge right now. We’ve had a couple of challenges so far:

  • Go Meatless! — I shared my favorite meatless recipe with my (vegan) partner (Mama Pea’s Roasted Chickpea Tacos — yum!), and I made myself a new veggie burger recipe. I used to make myself veggie burgers all the time — homemade are so much better than the frozen store-bought ones — but I’ve fallen out of the habit. Zach and I have burger night at least once a week, and I’ve been lazy and just eating his beef burgers, which I know isn’t good for me. The veggie burgers are so much healthier. So I made a batch of these mushroom veggie burgers and boy, am I glad I did. I can’t wait to have another for lunch! In fact, it has inspired me to do a post on a veggie burger recipe round-up tomorrow.
  • Send a hand-written note — I used the opportunity of yesterday’s challenge to get a jump start on my Christmas cards! Thanks #Elf4Health, I’ve been meaning to get that done ūüėČ
  • Try a new workout¬†— This is today’s challenge. I woke up this morning and I did a 10 minute warm up on the elliptical and today’s LiveFit Trainer workout (legs — and in week three, it’s getting tougher! My legs have been jelly ever since!), so that doesn’t count. Since I work at the library, I think I’ll head downstairs to the fitness DVD section later and see if I can’t find something different to try ūüôā

So, to say that this challenge has¬†benefited¬†me would be absolutely correct. I’m “meeting” new people (and finding new blogs to read — my favorite!) and trying new things, and most importantly, getting things done!

Another thing I’ve been inspired to do is to start logging my meals again on My Fitness Pal:

Just a sample of yesterday’s food log.

I have sort of a love/hate relationship with keeping  a food log, so here is my pro/con list:

  • Pros
  • ¬†Logging keeps you accountable for what you eat and it makes you¬†conscious¬†of your food choices.
  • It’s easy to do, especially with the internet and smart phones, but even if you prefer writing everything down, it’s easy enough to keep a notebook on you all the time.
  • It¬†works¬†if you are trying to lose weight — it is the #1 thing you should do if you want to lose weight. It has been proven that if the only thing you do is start writing down everything you eat, you will lose weight.
  • It’s easy to keep track of all your macros (protein, fat, carbs, etc) to see what you’re getting too much of or not enough of.

…and

  • Cons
  • It makes me feel tied down.

Yep, that’s the¬†only¬†con I have, but it’s a big one because it provides this huge mental block for me. I feel tied down to this app, like I can’t just do what I want. I get kind of down on myself, like, “I should be able to eat sensibly without this ball and chain!” I don’t have a fear of commitment until it comes to my diet, it turns out.

Well, yes, I can eat sensibly without it. I did it for over a year. But sometimes you need to re-set. Sometimes you need to be strict with yourself to re-learn lost lessons, and that’s what I’m doing by logging again. I make a lot of promises on this blog — sometimes I keep them, sometimes I don’t, but today I’m pledging to stick with logging my meals for one month — taking a break for my birthday/Christmas (same day). I need to re-learn lost lessons. If I’ve seen progress in that month (which, duh, of course I will!), then I will reassess. Please follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram — whatever! — and get on me to keep it up, please!

Question:
What do you find is your biggest challenge as far as sticking with a healthy lifestyle? 

Wild Wednesday

14 Nov

If you visit my blog via a reader of some sort, please click to go to the main blog and tell me what you think of my new layout! 

I work at my local library, but I’m not a librarian. I work in the Administration Department, and one of my jobs is Wellness Coordinator.

Our health insurance provider requires that each work site has an on-site Wellness Coordinator, who is sort of the liaison between the benefits coordinator (the person who manages paying the premiums, which in my office is the Business Manager), and the insured, everyone else who is insured. My job is to provide wellness support to the staff. This is also the most exciting part of my job, as you can imagine, because I am so interested in health and fitness.

Once a year, I host an on-site health screening, where the insured employees can come in to get a complete blood panel, and get all of their vitals taken. After the results are tallied, the insured gets a red, yellow or green light — obviously green meaning you are in good health, yellow meaning you have some work to do and red meaning you have a lot of work to do. If you get a yellow or a red light, there are programs in place to help you improve your score for the next plan year.

Today was our health screening! I’m happy to say it went very well. My quota was 30 participants, and I got 33 participants! Hooray! Since the participants have to fast for 12 hours prior to the screening, I also had to provide a healthy breakfast — I laid out whole grain bagels with neufchatel cheese, fresh fruit and whole grain breakfast bars, as well as 100% juice, coffee and water.

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In other news, I continued Jamie Eason’s Live Fit Trainer this morning, doing this workout:

It’s still weird to me just going to the gym, hitting the weight room for 30 minutes, and then leaving, but I can definitely feel it! I’m still sore from yesterday’s chest/triceps workout, and I anticipate my back/biceps being sore tomorrow. I’m definitely trying to challenge myself with the weight.

I wasn’t able to eat within an hour of waking up today because of the health screening, however.

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Last night, I got the DVD’s I won from Cait’s giveaway:

I can’t wait to try them out, but since I have pledged no cardio for four weeks, it might be a while. I promise to review them here once I try them though!

Question of the Day:
What’s your favorite part of your job?¬†

Operation: Zip the Wedding Dress.

13 Nov

I got my wedding dress in the mail last week! It’s beautiful. I wish I could share it on this blog, but it’s a secret until the big day. However, there is a slight problem. It fits perfectly everywhere, except right around my rib cage, it won’t zip! I really don’t want to return it for the bigger size, considering that might require a lot of alterations because the rest of the dress fits so well. Also, if I’m being honest with myself, I’ve gained a few pounds that I can stand to lose anyway.

So, Operation Zip the Wedding Dress starts today.

Considering my wedding is still 10 months away, I have plenty of time. So here is my plan:

1. Start Jamie Eason’s Live Fit Trainer

I started this today! Luckily, you do no cardio for the first 4 weeks of the program. This is good, because walking the one block to the gym brought me pain in my knee and Achilles tendon. I think no running or jumping for 4 weeks is just the rest my poor right leg needs. Luckily, today and tomorrow’s workout is upper body. Here’s what I did today:

Wide push-ups — 3 sets of 12
Dumbbell bench press — 3 sets of 12; 12 lb dumbbells
Flat bench cable flyes — 3 sets of 12; 20 lbs
Narrow push-ups — 1 set of 7; 1 set of 6; 1 set of 7 — narrow push-ups are my nemesis
Standing dumbbell extension — 3 sets of 12; 8 lb dumbbells
Triceps pushdowns — 1 set of 12; 60 lbs; 2 sets of 12 40 lbs

It felt weird to just go to the gym, knock out that workout (in 30 minutes) and then leave. I don’t know if I’ve ever done that! But, I definitely feel it. My arms are still jello!

2. Log food with My Fitness Pal; Eat Clean

I¬†hate¬†logging my food, but there is no doubt that it works. I actually solidly logged my food for probably 2-3 years, and about a year ago I just got so sick of it and stopped. The Jamie Eason Trainer has an eating plan as well, but I’m not sure I will follow it exactly. I know I need to eat clean to see results, so my main goals are to eat clean at every meal, eat about 6 times a day, drink plenty of water, and log all my food, even if I slip up.

One thing Jamie says to do is to eat your first meal within an hour of waking up. Usually, I just have coffee before the gym and then eat breakfast once I get to work. That means I’m not eating until about 3 hours after I wake up! Probably not good. So this morning, I made some sauteed kale with 3 eggs, toasted a piece of whole wheat bread and cut half an avocado. I put half of the breakfast on a plate and the other half in a¬†Tupperware¬†container to take to work.

I ate this right after getting back from the gym, just about 1 hour after I had woken up. I mashed the avocado onto the toast. It was delicious. I also had a cup of coffee with almond milk and stevia. Yum.

Then, I had the other half of that breakfast when I got to work. I’m nice and satisfied, and will hopefully stay that way until lunch.

…and that’s it! Yep, just exercise regularly and eat right. That’s all it takes to lose weight!

Weight loss can be a touchy subject, so I just want to be clear that I’m not just losing weight to fit into my dress, although it is the motivating factor at this moment. Since I got back from vacation at the end of August, I’ve been feeling like I’ve been off track. Not only have I seen some higher numbers on the scale (not always the most accurate tell of weight gain, by the way), I’ve also noticed that some of ¬†my clothes are a little more snug than they usually are, and I’m getting that icky feeling when I see certain photos of myself (my finish line photos from the half were NOT flattering — and not just because I was clearly in intense pain). I am not an advocate of constantly trying to fit a certain ideal, but I am an advocate of feeling good about yourself. When I don’t feel great about myself, it’s important to me to adjust accordingly.

Question of the Day:
How do you adjust accordingly when you aren’t feeling happy with your body?¬†

Some Random Thoughts

5 Nov

It was so easy to get dressed and ready for work this morning with a clean and organized closet. I had more time to focus on using my new curling wand:

I’m not terribly good at taking self-portraits.

Now that I have longer hair, I’m trying to avoid the dreaded ponytail-every-day syndrome, which is one of the main reasons I’ve kept my hair short for so long. My future sister-in-law has a curling wand (basically, a curling iron without a clip), and one evening she curled my hair for me. I immediately bought one. I have very fine hair, but it holds curl well, so that is one way to get some volume. I’ve been practicing a lot, and I think I’m getting really good giving myself the soft curls. It’s not as easy as it looks! I spent a lot of time in the bathroom, with a laptop perched on the sink, watching You Tube tutorials. If You Tube had existed when I was in high school, I would have been a lot more attractive.

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Did the end of Daylight Savings Time mess with anyone else? When I woke up on Sunday, I walked around our apartment looking at all the clocks, trying to figure out what time it was. It turned out my phone had gone back two hours rather than just one.

This morning, I woke up on my own, thinking that my alarm hadn’t gone off. I thought, “Wow, this is great! I’m up before my alarm! I’ll have some time to drink my coffee before I go to the gym!” — turns out I hadn’t turned on my alarm at all, so it was 6:30, and I had missed the class I wanted to go to. Since I’m not running this week (6 days until the Half Marathon!) , I decided to just have a relaxing morning instead. I’ll do some yoga this evening before bed.

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Yesterday was grocery day. I tried to get out of the door early in the morning to beat the Sunday crowd, and I was mostly successful. It started getting crowded just as I was wrapping up. There was a cart of fresh flowers on Manager’s Special when I first walked in, so I picked these up:

It was by far the best $2 I’ve spent for a long time. Those flowers made me happy all day long. I might have to start picking up fresh flowers for the table more often. After closet cleaning, I spent most of yesterday being lazy or cooking. I made some curried pumpkin potato soup, mostly off the cuff, which turned out really good. I’ll post photos and the recipe here later after I take a photo. I also made some homemade pizza and another pumpkin bread to enjoy this week. Yum! I wish I had taken pictures, but I was too busy doing this:

…watching my favorite Christmas movie while covered in cats. Bad Santa is one of the most hilarious movies of all time. If you’re easily offended, however, you might want to avoid it!

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With 6 days to go until the half-marathon, I don’t¬†foresee¬†many fitness-related posts this week. Like I mentioned last week, I’ll be doing a lot of stretching and relaxing this week to keep my legs fresh for Sunday. I did walk to work this morning, and hopefully I get some more walking in this week as well.

After the half is over, I am planning to start Jamie Eason’s Live Fit Trainer:

The first four weeks of the program, you do¬†no¬†cardio, whatsoever! I can’t even imagine not doing any cardio at all, but I’m going to give it a try. I’ve never followed a truly structured program like this, and I definitely need to do something to jump start some fat loss. You can find the program details here.

Question of the Day:
Do you ever have fresh flowers in your house? Does it improve your outlook?