3-Day Refresh Experience: Day 2

Alright! I’ve almost made it through Day 2 of the 3-Day Refresh!! To be honest, I am SO proud of myself so far! I have not strayed, AT ALL, from the program plan. This is probably a first for me in a long time. I feel like in recent years and months I often find myself giving up, quitting early and not finishing what I start- so this is already a big accomplishment for me. I’m definitely ready to finish Day 3 strong tomorrow!

This Refresh has also honestly been a great thing for my mind.  I’ve already decided this winter is going to be a “season of change” for me… no more bad habits, no more excuses, no more disorganization or unnecessary splurges, it’s time for a new me!! A me who follows through, stays positive, and makes beneficial changes in my life where needed. For some reason this 3-Day Refresh has been a good start for me mentally! It’s helped me get my head in the right place, feel focused and eager to take on my life. These are definitely side effects I was not expecting! 🙂 So without further ado… my thoughts on Day 2!!!!

Day 2 Measurements:

I weighed in at 137.4 this morning-2 lb difference. I think we can all agree, seeing the numbers on the scale drop, definitely keeps you motivated!

3-Day Refresh: Day 2 Weigh-in
3-Day Refresh: Day 2 Weigh-in… Down 2 lbs!

Day 2 Menu:

Water: 32 oz x 2 (as of 630pm), trying to get in more before bed.

Tea: 1 Chamomile-Ginger tea, 9:45am

Coffee: 1/2 cup coffee, 7am

Breakfast, 730am: Chocolate Shakeology with cinnamon, 1/2 banana

Mid-morning, 11am: Fiber Sweep

Lunch, 12pm: Vanilla Fresh Shake, 1/2 banana, 5 baby carrots, 2 tbsp of hummus

Afternoon snack: 5 carrots with 2 tbsp hummus

Dinner, 6pm: Coconut Steamed Veggies from Guidebook, Vanilla Fresh Shake, 1 cup chicken broth

3-Day Refresh: Day 2 Dinner Recipe
3-Day Refresh: Day 2 Dinner Recipe

Dinner was much more tasty than I was expecting!! I scarfed it down pretty quickly, not quite savoring things like I was yesterday!

DAY 2 HUNGER LEVEL: MODERATE

Day 2 was definitely different!  I was a little more hungry but most importantly took MAJOR notice of how much I STRESS EAT!! I work from home so it’s very easy for me to leave my computer and go straight to my fridge for a quick brain break when I’m feeling overwhelmed..which is often. Don’t worry though- I didn’t give in!! BUT I definitely had several urges throughout the day where I literally felt myself about to get up from my seat to go to the fridge and within seconds realized what I was doing! This is something I totally would have followed through with on a normal day and now I’m wondering just HOW MANY CALORIES have I been eating each day, just because I was stressed?! A piece of cheese here, a spoonful of peanut butter there, leftover chicken nuggets… you name it and I’m probably stress-munching on it! So glad to be aware of that terrible habit now! Today, since I couldn’t go for food, I would just drink water or breathe or just stand up and take a step outside for a sec.. whew!

TAKEAWAYS FROM DAY 2:

Eating is often emotional! Are there areas of your life that cause you to stress eat? A relationship, a job, a recent failure, etc? Next time you find yourself walking mindlessly toward the fridge- ask yourself, “Am I ACTUALLY hungry?” “Is it ACTUALLY time for a snack or meal?” “Have I drank enough water today?” Then shut the fridge, take a breathe and find something else to do to relieve the pain!

I realized another problem I might also want to watch out for is using food to reward myself. Today also made me realize how often I like to reward myself with food and drinks….  I LOVE food so if I do something good (exercise, work hard all day, etc) then I feel like I “deserve” a treat. Like recently when I ran a marathon…

“I’m running a marathon tomorrow, I can drink a margarita and eat lots of bread and pasta!”

“I ran a marathon today, I can drink lots of beer and eat pizza!”

“I ran a marathon yesterday, I can eat more pasta!”

“I ran a marathon last week– surely I deserve to keep eating pizza!!”

Where did that land me? 10 lbs heavier than I was… Anyway- Today was a major realization for me that I need to be good to my body ALL the time and that treating it well by working out or working hard, doesn’t mean I should reward it with junk food. Maybe next time I’ll reward myself with some delicious chicken and spinach salad or maybe grilled shrimp & asparagus- things I totally LOVE that would also seem like a treat!

DAY 2 BIGGEST TEMPTATIONS:

  • Cheeeeeese staring me in the face.
  • Veggies! I had already cut up avocado, tomato and peppers from yesterday and man I just wanted to scarf those down. Decided to stick to my plan though, only 1 more day!
  • I babysit a 4-yr-old sometimes… don’t get scared, I didn’t want to eat him…. hahahha… but I did want to eat his popcorn!!

But guess what, temptations have nothing on me today! I’m still on track with Day 2. Going to try to down more water and get to bed before any frozen pizzas hop out of the freezer and start chasing me around the house 😉

DAY 2 HELPFUL TACTICS TO STAY ON TRACK

  • THINK before you eat.
  • Drink water! Sometimes you aren’t hungry, you’re thirsty!

So there it is- my experience on Day 2 of the 3-Day Refresh. Not nearly as horrible as I expected. Just need to get through day 3 tomorrow and I’m done! Can’t wait to share my final results!

Would love to hear if you can relate to any of my emotional eating issues. Maybe we can help each other navigate that challenge together 🙂

Thanks for listening!

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5 Ways I Helped Myself Recover from a Gluttonous Vacation

As you may or may not know, I am originally from the Philadelphia area and I’ll tell you what- they have amazing F##$%#$#%’ing food. Everywhere. It doesn’t matter what type of eating establishment you go to, 9 times out of 10, it’s going to be pretty dang good. Upscale restaurants, road-side food trucks, mom & pop pizza shops, convenient stores (Can I get a HELL YEAH for WAWA?!), your cousin’s house for a party, if it’s in the PA-NJ-NY tri-state area, there is going to be SOMETHING good to eat. That being said, I have been living in Colorado for 4  years now and their food is a bit “eh”… So every time I go back to PA, which is a few times a year, I plan to PIG OUT. And I’m totally ok with that. And you should be too. You live once so you should spend most of the time treating your body right and spend some of the time indulging in your most fantastic favorite things 🙂

Buffalo Chicken Cheesesteak
Buffalo Chicken Cheesesteak

But as you can imagine, pigging out for almost 2 weeks is going to WRECK your body. I tried to drink water (FAIL), tried to stay active (FAIL), but mostly I tried to enjoy myself. Getting your body back in line after that can be tough. So without further ado, here are 5 ways to kick start that healthy body back into shape after a VERY gluttonous vacation 🙂

  1. DRINK WATER

The absolute best thing you can do to start ridding your body of toxins and getting your system working properly again is drinking water. Seems like an obvious one but it’s hard for most of us to stay on top of. My first day back from vacation I pounded water. This flushes your system, keeps you alert and awake, helps your bodily functions (i.e. taking a poo), makes you look fresh, feel fresh and helps get you back in the mindset of healthy living. It might be hard that first day if you were pounding soda and beer all week, but I have faith in  you 🙂 My goal was to drink 32oz by 11am, by 3pm and by 8pm for a whopping total of 96 oz of water per day.

2. MOVE

Feeling sluggish after all that time sitting on your butt? Me too. An object at rest likes to keep resting dammit. It’s physics! BUT the only way to fight the urge to stay on your BUTT, is to get OFF YOUR BUTT. I totally didn’t want to and I totally felt like crap during and after the 40-minute workout I did at the park, but guess what- I did it anyway. Because I’m awesome like that 😉 Just kidding- kind of. But for real – get your ass moving, the sooner the better. I promise, the next day you’ll be wanting to move again… it’s physics!

3. GET AN ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER

This is a big one for me! Having someone who is counting on you to show up works wonders! Especially if it’s a “new” friend. You may likely tell your best friend of 20 yrs to screw off if she’s texting you at 6am about the run you are supposed to go on…. zzzZZZzzzZZZ. But if you make plans with a new acquaintance or a new friend you’ll be much less likely to bail 😉 I can’t even tell you the amount of workouts I’ve done this summer at a park, in my living room or elsewhere for the simple reason that SOMEONE ELSE WAS EXPECTING ME TO DO IT! Whether I promised to show up virtually or in person, someone was counting on me. Find someone to count on to get your butt moving! If you need help in that area, keep your eyes peeled for the fitness & nutrition accountability groups I’ll be offering this coming fall/winter. I have a whole crew of people waiting to keep you on track and support and encourage you through your fitness journey.

4. DON’T PUT PIE IN YOUR PIEHOLE

Abs are made in the kitchen. So are cookies, pie, pizza, cake, ice cream and burritos 😉 Guess what- if you keep stuffing your face with crap, you are going to look and feel like crap! It’s physics! Just kidding- but it is a fact. You are what you eat whether you like it or not. Treat your body like the holy temple that it is and start feeding it delicious and healthy stuff. No, I don’t eat healthy 100% of the time, but I do eat healthy about 80% of the time. My body is amazing and it proves that fact time and time again when I watch it do crazy things like run a marathon, birth a child, climb a mountain, etc. It’s a beautiful creation and the only person with the ability to treat it as such is YOU. No one is going to do it for you.  My body is my vehicle to all the awesome stuff in the world and I intend to treat it nicely so it keeps motoring me more and more cool places 🙂

5. REPEAT…

…for life. Seriously though- eating healthy and staying fit shouldn’t be a one-time deal. You can’t do it for 6 months and then never again. It’s a lifetime commitment. A commitment to yourself, to treat yourself with respect and LOVE. No matter what you look like right now or in the future, you are worth loving, respecting and treating well. Doing all these things should be a treat, not a punishment. Drinking more water, moving, eating healthy food, and finding like-minded friends to do all of the above with IS A GIFT. None of it is to make you feel miserable, all of it is to make you feel great. Does that mean it’s easy to repeat all this for life? No. But it’s worth it. I promise.

So there you have it- my 5 tips for recovering after a gluttonous vacation. Remember, the first few days can be tough but so are you. So just throw that water down the hatch, shake that booty, grab a friend, eat an apple and stay healthy for life because YOU ARE WORTH IT and I promise you won’t regret it 🙂

mbf

Being a “No Excuse Mom” Goes Further Than Health & Fitness

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE excuses. I love them so much that I pretty much have an excuse for everything. I often have so many excuses that I have to share them with someone else. Need excuses to not workout? I have a ton. Need excuses to not choose healthy food? I have some for that too. Need excuses to not try something new? You have waaayy too much going on to try something new!!! Here, take a pocket full of my excuses and get on your way! Or don’t, because you don’t have to do anything when you have an excuse for everything.

But you guys are smart, I bet you can you guess where excuses get you. That’s right… NOWHERE. And the beauty of them is that they get you there pretty damn quick. Instead of me taking time, energy, resources, strength, willpower & discipline to get something important or magical done, I can just hop on the Express Train to Nowhere with my One-Way, All-Excuses-Paid ticket. Sadly, as of late, I think I’ve been a season pass holder on that train.

As a personal master of excuses, you can imagine I was intrigued when I started hearing about No Excuse Mom, Maria Kang. You may have heard of her because she was brutally bashed in the media for her profile picture on Facebook which read “What’s Your Excuse?” and shows her in a sports bra and shorts with her 3 young children.

excuse

For me, that image was such an inspiration. Here was a woman who had 3 little boys in a very short amount of time and she looked way more healthy and more fit than I ever had. You’d start to think that maybe she spent a lot of time at the gym and not enough time with her children but if you followed her on social media, especially Instagram, you’d quickly see that wasn’t the case. She was often fitting in quick but beneficial workouts when she could, on top of making healthy eating a priority for herself and her family. She was running a business, working out and eating healthy all with kids in tow. This was something I could believe in. This was someone who did not let excuses get in her way, a concept I hadn’t thought of for quite some time.

In an effort to socialize with other moms in her neighborhood while staying fit, Maria started a No Excuse Mom workout group in her town. No Excuse Mom is now a global movement where mothers and caretakers all over the world are meeting together one or more times per week to do a FREE 30 minute workout together. Anybody can lead the group, no fitness experience necessary- you just need a desire to socialize and get fit! What an awesome way to meet other moms and workout at the same time!

Coincidentally I’d just moved to a new town where I didn’t know a soul. I’d be having my first baby in just a couple months and the only other moms I knew lived several hours away or on the east coast. That’s great for a late night phone call but where was I going to find local friends who would meet me for coffee? Or who would listen to me whine when I felt like I just couldn’t handle it anymore? I had to find friends, and I had to find them fast…

In the past I’d met friends through classes at school or by going out to the bar. Now, as a 31-year-old married, pregnant woman, I quickly realized my old friend-making avenues were no longer viable. So instead I went on Meetup.com and found a local play date group in my town. I didn’t have a kid yet but I would soon so I thought it’d be a great place to start. I met a few awesome ladies very quickly. Pretty cool!

So I thought what better time to start a “No Excuse Mom” group than now? There wasn’t one in my town already… There were definitely moms in the area looking for friends and I imagined some, if not all, of them would be interested in getting fit.

Well guess what I had ready to aim and fire? EXCUSES. And I had lots of them as always. What if no one is interested? What if they don’t like me? What if I TOTALLY SUCK at leading a fitness group? What if they don’t like my workout style? Do I have a workout style? What if I have no clue what I’m doing? (Oh right… I don’t). But guess what- these were all excuses I had pulled out of my pocket and spread out on the table. I looked at each of them and continued to respond to each one with the same question- Does it matter? Does it matter if no one is interested? Does it matter if they don’t like me? Does it matter if I totally suck at leading a fitness group? Does it matter if I don’t have a workout style or know what I’m doing? Does any of it matter? No, not really. Sure some of those things might help my cause but at the end of the day, what I wanted to do was something good and I doubted people would hate me for it. So it was settled, I emailed the “No Excuse Mom” Regional Director for my area and told her I wanted to start a group in my town. I received a quick response, signed up (no fitness experience needed) and I was on my way.

Or was I?

Now came the hard part- starting the group! I had only met a couple ladies and  I was new to town so was terrified to suggest the idea. But I worked up the courage and I suggested the idea to my local Meetup.com play date group leader. I literally had the email in my drafts for a couple days before I worked up the courage to even send it. What was I afraid of? Well I was mostly afraid it would come to fruition and then I’d have to follow through and actually run the group! Terrifying. But I knew deep down that it’s when we take a step outside our comfort zone that magical and amazing things happen. It might be scary at first but it’s often worth it. The rare time it’s not worth it, just means we’ve had a chance to learn, grow, and try something different next time.

So I sent the email and the group leader loved the idea! She posted it on Meetup.com and we had the date of our first meetup set. As you can imagine, I was feeling incredibly nervous in the days leading up to our first meeting. Oddly, a couple days beforehand, I stumbled across this article. As I read the following words, I knew I had to get rid of my excuses:

“Before you are able to be good at something and do something important, you must first suck at something and have no clue what you’re doing. That’s pretty obvious. And in order to suck at something and have no clue what you’re doing, you must embarrass yourself in some shape or form, often repeatedly. And most people try to avoid embarrassing themselves, namely because it sucks. Ergo, due to the transitive property of awesomeness, if you avoid anything that could potentially embarrass you, then you will never end up doing something that feels important.” -Mark Manson

Wow. You can’t get great at something if you never try it. Pretty basic common sense right? But not something on the forefront of my mind as I planned this group.

So guess what- I went for it. We held our first Bayfield, Colorado No Excuse Mom group on September 24th. It was awesome! 3 moms showed up and I led a 25 minute workout that everyone seemed to enjoy. The best part is the No Excuse Mom organization provides you with a lot of tools for running your groups- event flyers, workout plans, location ideas, etc. A great resource for me has been VCNFitness, an official No Excuse Mom personal trainer.

NEM
First Meetup for the No Excuse Moms in Bayfield, Colorado

I’m not sure where our Bayfield group will go from here but I know I have a few moms excited about the opportunity to socialize and work on fitness together. Even if it just continues to be the 4 of us and no one else joins in, at least we have each other and are making a difference in our lives and in turn, the lives of our families. This endeavor has made my husband more healthy as well, seeing as I’ve made him do the workouts with me before I unveil them to the group.

If I had held on to my excuses of fear, embarrassment, lack of confidence, etc then I would never get to hang out with these awesome women weekly and better my life. We can all make excuses for why we don’t want to workout or eat healthy. I learned that a lot of my excuses leak into other areas of my life as well, not just health and fitness. I also make excuses for why I shouldn’t try new things, or apply for that new job, or say hi to that new person. I hope that this is the start of me letting go of my excuses, not only in health & fitness but in other areas of my life as well.  I’ve begun slowly pulling my excuses out of my pocket and throwing them in the trashcan as I head out the door. I encourage anyone who is scared to become a No Excuse Mom group leader to JUST DO IT. You don’t have to be the next rock-star fitness trainer, you don’t need fitness experience at all. All you need is a willingness to put yourself out there, connect with other people and help each other learn and grow along the way. Believe me- that big scary world out there is often way less judgmental than you think.

MamaBurnsFat

Greatist.com’s September Pushup Challenge

Quick & Easy 30-day Pushup Challenge by Greatist.com!

Greatist.com is an awesome fitness & health site that I’ve been following. They offer super helpful workout plans and healthy food ideas. This month they posted their September Pushup Challenge. Being 7 months pregnant, I’m not really in the mood for a hard core workout so something like this is just what I need to have a goal, keep moving, and work on staying strong. It’s just 30 seconds per day of pushups! Anyone can do that, even a pregnant chick 🙂 If you don’t normally do pushups, or struggle with them, please consult with your physician and use caution if you decide to try this challenge.

Monthly Challenge Push-Ups Calendar

I didn’t find this challenge until Sept 2nd so started on Sept 3rd with the Staggered Pushups. I did 15 seconds with my right arm forward and 15 seconds with my left arm forward. I was able to do quite a few before dropping to my knees to finish out the set. Again, use caution and modifications where necessary if you are pregnant. I WOULD NOT try the explosive pushups when pregnant. Instead of explosive pushups I’ll be doing some triple threat pushups: 1 regular pushup, 1 wide-armed/wide-legged pushup, & 1 tricep pushup, repeat for 30 seconds.

The best part of this is it only takes 30 seconds but you definitely feel the burn. I also was able to get my husband to join me. In hopes of becoming more productive and healthy (we’ve really fallen off track recently), we decided to set 3 new goals for this month:

1. Drink at least 96 oz of water per day. I’ll be drinking 24 oz before each meal, plus some more in between to reach this goal.

2.  Do the Greatist Pushup Challenge 

3. Study for 1.5 hours per night (Monday- Thursday only). My husband is taking an online real estate course & I’m studying for my personal trainer certification and we’ve both been slacking in the study department.

We even set up a little calendar in the kitchen where we are marking off when we complete each goal for the day. Accountability is HUGE when it comes to health and fitness and it definitely helps even more if someone in your very own house is doing it along with you. Of course many of us might be in situations where our partner or roommate doesn’t want to participate. You can try to combat this by bringing an element of fun to the challenges. For example, whoever completes all 3 goals for the day first gets some sort of reward. Another big help can be explaining why its beneficial for the person to do these challenges (drinking lots of water = great looking skin! etc) or you can always let your friend/partner know that with their support you are way more likely to succeed so if nothing else, could they do it for you? Who can say no to that?

Starting out with small, achievable goals is the best way to change your habits. Do I need to do more than 30 seconds of pushups per day? Yes. But is 30 seconds of pushups per day something I know I can likely accomplish? YES! Small changes made over time will inevitably create bigger changes and more drive later. Try it out! Grab a buddy, write down 3 small daily goals for this month and get it done!

I look forward to hearing how it goes 🙂

MamaBurnsFat

 

5 Tips For Staying Fit While Pregnant

The first thing I said to myself when I got pregnant was that I wasn’t going to be one of “those” pregnant women… you know the kind- who take being pregnant as a free pass to eat EVERYTHING & ANYTHING, ALL-THE-TIME. Ha! Great endeavor for someone who has never been pregnant before, but now that I’m 6 months into it, I can tell you that your honorable intentions all go out the window- or at least mine did. You are tired, you are hungry, you are stressed and you can’t have booze! Next best thing for me is some delicious food and I’ve had my fair share of it over the last 6 months. That being said, I still don’t want to come out on the other end of this looking like a whale… So here are a few things I keep in mind in order to keep myself semi-fit AND sane during this time 🙂

1. Don’t beat yourself up!

I had been in the swing of losing some weight and staying consistently active when I found out I was pregnant. I told myself being pregnant wasn’t going to be an excuse for not exercising. I did good for awhile, especially in the 1st trimester when I continued a boot camp class I had been going to, but slowly and surely exercise became a little less important. Instead of making myself feel guilty when I’d skip a workout (or a whole week of workouts!), I’d just appreciate that my body was going through a change, that it was OK to be tired and stressed and not be hardcore every day. Again, we shouldn’t use it as an excuse but don’t beat yourself up when you need a rest or a break. Feeling guilty won’t make skipping that workout any better- use that time to take a nap, read a book or do something else on your to-do list!

2. Stay Consistent

While rest days are definitely needed, especially when pregnant, consistency is always the key with fitness. Long spurts of minimal or no exercise really lowers your strength and cardio ability very quickly. While taking a break here and there is OK, staying consistently active over these months is going to be key. Even if you are too tired for a hardcore workout, you can always fit in a short walk and a few pushups or squats. Something is always better than nothing! Sometimes I even do a few squats in the shower or while I’m brushing my teeth. Don’t let your body forget what it feels like to sweat and move. Do something daily, no matter how small. If you still find yourself going more than a few days without a workout, see Tip #1!

3. Drink Water!!

Water is so, so, so important. Even when we aren’t pregnant we often never get enough water each day. I also live at altitude (8900ft!) so I need even more water than the average person + even more than that when I’m pregnant. I seriously can’t get enough water into my system it seems. Keep a water bottle on your desk, in your purse, or in the fridge. Always opt for water with meals and skip the soda & juice. If you don’t like water (I know personally it can often be an acquired taste) then you need to be drinking more until you do like it. I swear it works! Of course there are great tricks to making water more tasty if you really struggle with getting it down- here are some awesome recipes I found. Water not only will hydrate you and your baby but also provides lots of other benefits like great looking skin, fewer headaches, and better digestion.

4. Choose Healthy Alternatives for Snacks

I haven’t been an ice cream person in recent years, salty things have always been my snack of choice but after getting pregnant ice cream is the only thing on my radar. I’ve given into the craving far too many times the last few months and swear I could feel my cheeks getting fatter as I ate each spoonful. I knew for my own health and the health of my baby, I couldn’t continue that way. So instead of completely denying myself this treat- I thought of a tasty alternative. Instead of a bowl of ice cream, I started eating yogurt drizzled lightly with chocolate syrup. Might sound gross and is surely not a replacement for the tastiness of ice cream but the chocolate on top tricks my mouth.  Obviously not the best tactic but still better than a bowl of ice cream!

5. Feed the Need

Sometimes (or more than sometimes) you have to give in to your cravings. Let’s be honest, being pregnant is not fun. Sure it’s very exciting to be growing a human being, but what it does to your body is not exciting at all. If I restricted myself to ONLY healthy food the whole time, I’d think I’d be in an insane asylum. So Kit-Kat bars, ice cream, big juicy cheeseburgers, or delicious bowls of pasta have definitely made it on my menu. And guess what I don’t feel bad about it! (See Tip #1) Plus your little one needs the extra calories! Not a ton, but in moderation! Since I can’t have booze to relieve my stress, a Kit-Kat bar and big glass of milk has been the next best thing for me 🙂 No matter what, pregnancy is a long and tough time. We want to do what we can to make things easy for ourselves but also healthy for our baby. Taking a break and giving into temptation (within reason) here and there is not going to cause major effects on us or our children. I’m a big fan of everything in moderation- that goes for treats, exercise, & rest. Enjoy this special time in your life,  try to make good decisions most of the time, and the rest of the time kick, back, relax, have some ice cream and chocolate and enjoy every bite!