30 minute Playlist to Get You Motivated

In my morning readings today I came across this article from the Huffington Post titled:

If This Playlist Can Help The Seahawks Win A Super Bowl, It Will Surely Get You Through 30 Minutes On The Treadmill

Who doesn’t want to feel like they’ve won the Superbowl after a workout?

Like the article says, the right music can get you motivated, and motivated BIG. I like this track list because it’s loaded with heavy hip hop/rap… who doesn’t love a little Luda and Tupac in their mash-up?  Oh! There’s a song you’ll remember from the movie Fast & Furious too.

This mix is a bit slow for a run (for me), but if you’re into lifting, I think this could definitely do the trick. Crank it up and pump it out baby. You’ve got this, ain’t nobody gonna hold YOU back 🙂

Cheers friends, have a great day!

(Image courtesy of http://crossfitinvoke.com)

Raw Food Reset – Day 1

I’m in need of a system reset. I’ve been eating well, exercising, but equally drinking and snacking on chips. Counteracts all the goodness I’ve been working so hard on. SO… I decided to go raw vegan for a few weeks to reset my system.  I used to eat a few vegetarian meals a week but since we’ve acquired our house guests, that hasn’t been happening. I feel like I need to get back to that.

Yesterday I spent the afternoon prepping and washing a bunch of veggies that I bought for the week.  I am keeping it simple, but tasty. Nothing like shocking your system and being hangry. I don’t do hangry well, so I need to keep myself interested. It’s not only for my benefit, but also for the public’s well being too.

The Goods

No dairy, no meat, no wheat and no alcohol.  Vegan, raw options only.

I can do this.

I downloaded the DO EAT RAW app from iTunes this week and decided on a few recipes to make. I also did some poking around on the ‘net and planned some snacks that are easy and quick. The first ‘meal’ is a raw collard spring roll/wrap. I’ve had them before at random farmers markets and loved them so I wanted those for lunch. I also wanted a chickpea salad (which is SUPER simple and delish and versatile for lunch/dinner -Thanks Snack Girl- I even like the raisins in it) and lots of greens (spinach, kale, collards) .  My go-to snack is raw broccoli and crunchy almond butter. So so good. For dinner options I plan on making a raw gazpacho type cleanse soup and cauliflower ‘rice’ bok choi boats.  I also stopped off at the apple farm and picked up a HUGE bag of organic Russet apples. They are a fall apple, just picked a few days ago. They have a dark skin that resembles a potato, and you wouldn’t think they are an apple at first glance. Sweet, crunchy and satisfying.

So far so good. I went for a quick run after work, and felt great.

Here’s what I ate today:

Breakfast: Organic banana, kiwi

Lunch: raw collard wrap with almond cream, green salad topped with chickpea salad

Raw Collard Wrap

Moroccan Chickpea Salad

Snack: assorted veggies (broccoli, cucumber, red pepper) dipped in almond butter

Almond Butter

Dinner: leftover salad from lunch with zucchini ‘pickles’, half an avocado, raw pumpkin seeds, raisins and balsamic/dijon dressing

Washing it all down with a big green tea then heading to bed. Cheers to another day of healthy eating!

Run baby run

No Gym? No Problem!

I used to be of the mindset that I had to be at the gym to workout.  I am not a runner and don’t enjoy it, so that reeeallly obvious workout wasn’t something I would turn to when I couldn’t get to the gym. Even though I don’t like it, and get incredibly bored doing it, I am more likely now to run just because it’s a great burn and I like the challenge.  Sometimes.

I started working out a few years ago. Before that, I never had to worry about gaining weight or a muffin-top. Ah, those were the days. Reality now, is that I literally have to work my ass OFF. It has taken me a few years to figure out what exercises I enjoy, how long I can mix it up and stay engaged. For most, they get bored, hit a plateau and throw the gym to the wind. Although I’m impatient when it comes to seeing results, I have managed to stick with it and have seen some good results. At one point, I had decreased my total body measurements by 40 INCHES!.  I have now gained muscle mass and although I haven’t lost any significant weight, I have been able to maintain my weight. I am thinking that my body is just happy at where it is and I’m okay with that.  I’d rather be happy and at a healthy weight than constantly depriving and fighting with myself. I do try to eat clean and healthy, but I love the occasional glass of wine and chunk of cheese. Those are two things I will never give up, they’re just too damn good.

So I wanted to share a few great exercises and apps that I have tried over this past year which have helped me stay engaged even while away from the gym.

Hundred Push-Ups –  (iTunes) – This app is awesome. It guides you through a workout plan that helps you get to finishing 100 push-ups over a number of weeks.  If you’re weak like me, I could barely do one proper push-up so I needed to start at the beginning. It shows you proper form and has a planned workout with reminders. Very cool.

Fitocracy – (iTunes) – This app motivates and empowers you to succeed a fitness. It’s kind of like Yelp, where the more you track and log, the more badges you unlock, earn points and beat quests. It’s a whole community that empowers you to be the fit person you were meant to be.

MyFitnessPal (iTunes) – I’ve been using this app for a year now. It started with a work fitness challenge and now we are all on it. I use it to track my daily food calories and fitness calories burned. You can see other’s food logs (if they allow it) and you can comment on people’s progress as they can yours. Great forums and chat topics and overall support from the community.

There are a whack of great body-weight exercises you can do at home which require very little space:

(images courtesy of Women’s Health Magasine)

T Stabilization – T Stabilization

Squat Jump– Squat Jump

Seated Rotation – Seated Rotation

Plie Squat– Plie Squat

  • One of my favourite exercises is the Mountain Climber: Starting on your hands and knees, bring the left foot forward directly under the chest while straightening the right leg. Keeping the hands on the ground and core tight, jump and switch legs. The left leg should now be extended behind the body with the right knee forward. Next up? Everest.
  • The Plank: Ohhh how I used to hate the plank. Now I can hold it for a minute, but when I first started I could do maaaaybe 10 seconds. There are many variations, which is great because there’s always a new challenge. I also really love this one for strengthening me for low-plank in yoga. Now that’s an awesome move. 

What are some of your favourite body-weight exercises? Do you have an app that you can’t live without? I’d love to hear about it! Sharing is caring, please leave a comment 🙂

Cheers!