Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Spinning; A History.....

Have I mentioned my love affair with Spinning yet? No? Allow me to enlighten you all.

It all started in New Jersey.  I used to live there.  In fact, my first son (Jeremiah) was actually born in New Jersey.  Although I really didn't care too much for Jersey in general, it will always hold a special place in my heart because of the great things I accomplished while I lived there.  I had my first child, I finished my Associates Degree, AND I lost over 90lbs.

Many of you have been following me (and this blog) since I first started to focus on health, fitness and weight loss after I had Jeremiah.  As such, many of you know that I was big into running and gym life in general.  Although, I'm not sure I have talked at length about my Spinning obsession.  Like I said, it all began in New Jersey.  I switched to a very nice, big gym called Tilton Fitness ( I was previously attending a facility called 'Island Gym' where I was pretty much reduced to tears of shame by a trainer on the day I first signed up, so I was very happy to find a bigger, MUCH better gym where the people were much nicer).  Anyway, my husband's co-worker's wife realized that we both attended this same gym and asked if I had ever tried Spin before. Now, at this time, I had walked past the Spin classroom many times while a class was in session and I will admit, my first thought was, "Wow. Those people are NUTS!" After receiving this invitation to try a Spin class with a friendly face, someone I knew, I thought... 'okay, what the heck? Why not give it a shot?' So I went.

At first, my butt hurt REALLY bad.  I like to call this "Spinner's Butt".  Its because your booty is not particularly used to the seat of the bike (and it may not be very muscular) and after the class is over, you kind of feel like you're bruised in the crotch/butt area.  Kind of like someone was just punching you repeatedly down there.  BUT, what I loved was the atmosphere in that room.  AND I really liked the instructor.  I remember when the class first started, she was so peppy and upbeat and all, "Yeah! Lets get ready to work!" and I remember thinking, 'is this lady on crack?!!!?!?!?!' But she was really great! I think she kind of specialized in teaching beginners and man, she was good at getting you hooked.  After that first class, I became addicted.

I started attending Spin classes three days a week.  I remember the schedule was Mondays and Wednesdays at noon (sometimes I would come back in the evenings for a night class too), and then on Fridays I came to the evening class after dinner.  I continued to attend Spin classes on a regular basis like that for well over a year.  I even watched a couple regular Spin Class attendees become certified and then THEY taught classes, and that was really cool to see. I even continued to spin there at Tilton Fitness up until I was about 4 months pregnant with Jonah!(My second beautiful boy) Then we moved, so I was no longer able to continue, but if we hadn't moved, I would still be there to this day, spinning my legs to my heart's content.

So I tell you all of this history so that you can understand where this 'New Life Goal' of mine is coming from.  I have decided that once I get within 20lbs of my goal weight, I will start the process of becoming a certified Spin Instructor.  Another aspect of that goal is to get hired as an instructor somewhere.  I don't care if its just teaching one class a week, thats good enough for me.

I think its so important to have goals in life.  Whether they're fitness related or not, it doesn't matter.  I believe we become better people when we're working towards something we are really passionate about or interested in.  If we all just lived our lives without ever creating and reaching goals, wouldn't that be a pretty boring life? Why not challenge yourself? Why not prove to yourself (as well as others) that you CAN do whatever you put your mind to? I know it sounds totally cliche, but, in the words of ShayCarl (Google him if you don't know who that is) "The secrets to life are hidden behind the word, 'cliche'. "

Until next time, kiddos. ;)

Monday, January 27, 2014

Happy Happy Monday!!!!

Am I the only one who LOVES Mondays? Maybe its because I no longer work in an office setting (for the time being, but those days will be back...and that right soon), but I LOVE the fact that Mondays signify a new week which is also a new chance to get things right! What could be better? Technically, every new day is another chance to get things right, however I try to start Mondays off with the same belief system.

So, above you will note a pretty cool quote (no, I did not intend on making that last bit rhyme).  I came across this image/quote this morning whilst "Google-ing" some inspirational images.  This one is just awesome.  Its almost the same idea as the definition of insanity.  I believe the definition of 'insanity' is: 'doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results' (of course, that's me paraphrasing).  And to me, that is exactly what the above quote is getting at.  If we continue to do the same things we have always done (i.e., eat unhealthy, not working out, sitting around, remaining stagnant, being unhappy, etc) then we will continue to get what we've always gotten (i.e. unhappiness, obesity, anger, depression, etc).

I'm reminded of a conversation I had with a classmate in High School. Yes, I said HIGH SCHOOL. Today, I can't even remember this girl's name, but her face is forever burned in my brain because of the wisdom she dropped on me one day.  She was a Russian girl who I helped a lot in English and History classes, as she had a hard time grasping the concepts and the language differences.  She was cute! I would not call her chubby, but she told me that in her family and in her culture, she was considered "the chubby one".  This totally blew my mind because she was pretty much beautiful to me, and I was a good 4 inches taller and about 100lbs heavier than her (in high school remember, yes, I was a big girl back then too).  Anyway, she was reading a magazine one day in class when we had down time and she asked me to explain a phrase to her that she didn't quite understand (it was something about exercise or dieting).  This is how the conversation went:

Me- "Are you doing this diet/exercise stuff?"
Her- " No, I'm kind of doing my own thing, but I decided to change myself"
Me- "Change yourself?"
Her- "Yes.  I am unhappy with my appearance and I want to change it. So I am."
Me- *while giggling a little* "Oh, its just the easy, huh?"
Her- *genuinely confused by my laughter* "Yes, it is! If you don't like something about yourself, you don't have to just accept it.  You can change it.  If you want to change, then do it. Its that simple."

Mind Blown. Yep. I was pretty much speechless after she said that.  It was at the end of our Senior year and I was at an all time high weight (for my age then, I've since surpassed that after having my babies), and I was unhappy with my appearance and lack of physical health/fitness in general. Her words hit home with me and that summer, I started to 'change me' as she put it. Before I started college that next fall, I had lost almost 50lbs and never felt better.

Its funny how this story and those words of wisdom from her are coming back to me now.  Its the first thing I thought of when I read that quote this morning. Funny how that works, isn't it?  I feel great that this is the mindset I now have.  Its not so much about changing who I am as a person on the inside - because that person is pretty frickin' awesome and I love her to pieces - its more about changing my outward appearance to reflect that awesome person inside.  There's nothing wrong with that.

So, if you haven't already started on your resolutions/goals for the New Year, do it now! What better day to start than on a Monday? Every day is a chance to do things right, better, work harder, get more results. Remember that, and keep on going.

Until next time kiddos! ;)

Friday, January 24, 2014



- I'm tired.
- I think I should take another day of rest after being sick.....just to be safe. (This is also known as "playing the sick card").
- Its getting late and I won't have enough time to get a "full" workout in before having to pick up J from school. 
- The husband even thinks I should just stay home and chill on the couch. 
- My coffee tastes so good, my slippers are so nice and warm and it is freaking COLD outside.
- I want to just play on the computer and not do anything. 
- Did I mention, I'm tired.....?
- I went to bed late and didn't get enough sleep. 
- I feel slightly nauseous, (again..."playing the sick card"...)


Because my goals are worth more than my EXCUSES. 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Am I an Extremist???

ex·trem·ist  (k-strmst)
One who advocates or resorts to measures beyond the norm, especially in politics.
Hmmmm...... well I'm sure I'm not a political extremist, but the rest of the definition definitely suits me. See, a lot of people think I take things too far, do too much, or become too hard core with certain things, but I'm starting to believe that it might not be such a bad thing!
For those of you that may not know me very well, I have a very harsh personality.  Now, if you were to meet me for a few minutes, you obviously would not think this were true, but that is simply because I am well aware of social graces and I conduct myself very well when meeting and befriending new people. I guess what I mean is, I have been told that I am very relatable and approachable, but nothing could be further from the truth when you get to know the real me. I'm opinionated.....VERY opinionated. When I'm around friends (and I use the term friends in its proper definition.  PEOPLE, someone you met once, twice, or even THREE TIMES, and you may have spoken with for a few minutes each time....they are NOT your friend. Just because you 'friend' someone on Facebook, does not mean you are actually friends.  Please keep this in mind for future reference.)  Again, when I'm around my actual friends, I tend to let my mouth fly off and speak what I believe to be true, and share my opinions without caution, and defend those opinions as well. On another note, I am fiercely loyal and will rip the head off of anyone who will try to speak ill of my loved ones. So, like I said, its a bit of a harsh personality.
In regards to my fitness, I think I'm a bit of an extremist there as well.  Merely going to the gym once a day is not nearly enough for me.  This is not to say that those of you who do go once a day are wrong.  I am simply saying that its not enough for ME to only go once. It has to be 2-a-days, and if for some reason I end up only going once in a day, I get angry at myself because I know the reason I was unable to go in a second time was bogus.  I am a big calorie counter, I'm not obsessive with it, but I am an avid tracker of things that I eat and I guess this can be considered a bit extreme as well.
In my home life, again, Extremism.  I am a clean freak. Well, as much as you can be with 2 small children running around.  My husband makes fun of me sometimes and claims I have 'OCD' (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) because I have certain nightly routines that I do.  I'm sorry, but I will NOT go to bed with my house a mess. And no, I can't sleep if the pillows on the couch are not arranged in the right way. And yes, it IS important to have no dishes in the sink and the coffee prepped and ready to go for the morning before I lay my head down for the night. Yeah......Extremism.
But here's my question: Is being an Extremist a bad thing?
In my opinion, I don't think so.  Being an Extremist has brought me a lot of success in my life.  I think many of us that are categorized as 'Go-Getters' are probably within this category of Extremists.  But since when is it a bad thing to get off your a** and WORK for what it is that you want? The way I see it, my Extremism has enabled me to have the best, real friends a person could as for, a very nice and clean home, and personal goals that I actually MEET! So, if being an Extremist has helped me to get to where I am, and living the life that I do, then how can it be bad? I don't think it is. 
Since this is primarily a fitness/weight loss blog, I suppose I should relate this topic more towards that spectrum.  So, here's what I'm getting at.  Maybe we all could benefit from a bit of Extremism in our lives.  Don't half a** your workout! Be an Extremist.  Go hard!  Do your workout like you initially intended.  Balls to the wall.  Let the sweat POUR off your face.  Work the machines. NEVER SURRENDERRRRRRR!!!!!!!! <-----I may have gotten a little carried away there.......

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Week #1...DOMINATED!

Well hello there lovelies! Check this out, a mere 5 days after my last blog post and I'm back.  I think this means I'm OFFICIALLY back to blogging.  Woot woot. Okay....lets talk about this past week, shall we?

So the first week of 2014 is officially over and you know what's missing? 4.9lbs!!!!! Woot woot, HOLLA!!!!!!! Yeah I pretty much killed it this first week and I intend on continuing this momentum for next week's weigh in.  Although, I have to admit that it seems to be a little bit of a daunting task since I am so sore right now. Yeah, just sitting on the toilet proves to be a difficult process for me at this point. Oh Leg Day...I love you, yet hate you at the same time.  You will eventually tone my booty and tighten up these thighs, but for now, all you are is PAIN!!!! (Yes, I may have lost it....just a little).

For those of you that remember, my goal loss each month for this year is 6lbs. So, in the first week I've already lost 4.9lbs and this means all I have to do is lose another 1.1lbs and I have met my monthly goal! That is DEFINITELY an attainable loss in the next 3 weeks, and I do believe that I will surpass my goal, which is pretty cool too.  This is why its so important to set REALISTIC and ATTAINABLE goals.  I feel like way too many people start off the New Year thinking that if they work out for a few days and practically starve themselves they'll reach their weight goal in less than a month. It just doesn't work that way people! If there's one thing I learned the last time around, its that consistency and time are key factors in fitness/weight loss success.

I have this friend who is entering a natural fitness competition and I look at her to be such a good example to me.  She is consistent with her eating, her workouts and her weight training.  Just the other day she posted a picture of her body transformation thus far, and it is really amazing to see the changes. She is more defined, toned and just muscular in general.  Instead of looking at her pictures and being green with envy, (which I will readily admit, I was a little envious of her AMAZING body, I mean who wouldn't be?) I thought to myself, 'what great inspiration and motivation for me'.  She has put in so much work, countless workouts, GALLONS of water (haha), and THIS is what comes from it.....Results.  That should be a testament to all of us. 

What I really think I'm trying to say here is this: We should all work hard and consistently to achieve whatever it is we want in life.  If we all just put in small amounts of effort, and did that sporadically, nothing would come of it.  And I realize now that this is what I have been doing for the last year.  This last year, when I SHOULD have been focusing and working to achieve my goals, I was just putting in effort for a week or so and then giving up. Then trying again for another week, then giving up. NO WONDER I didn't get anywhere! I mean, duh! But this year? This year is different.  I'm seeing things in a whole new light. I hope the rest of you are as well.

I'll leave you with this nice little quote:
     " There are only two options regarding commitment.  You're either IN or you're OUT.  There's no such thing as life in-between." - Pat Riley

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Plan....

As with any goal one may have in one's life, there is a need to come up with a plan, a "course of action" so to speak, that will enable you to tackle that goal.  That is what this post is about.  This is about my plan.

Sadly, there's not much a plan to blog about, not yet.  I've allowed my day-to-day responsibilities to pile up and therefore, have not had much time to come up with an actual "Plan".  But I do have what I would call, an outline to a plan. And it is as follows.

Seeing as how I would like to lose about 70lbs in a year (which is 12 months), this means that each month I would need to lose about 6lbs.  And yes, I DID just pull out my calculator to figure that out - don't judge me by my terrible, non existent math skills - In keeping with said logic, I am therefore placing a monthly weight loss goal of about 6lbs. 

My second goal for this year was to run two 5ks and two 10ks.  A good friend of mine gave me the advice that I should go ahead and sign up for these races now.  That way I will have something to work towards that I KNOW I have to do, seeing as I've already paid for it.  Well, I have begun researching local races and races where my parents live (about 2 hours away from me).  My outline to meet this goal is this:  In total I'm going to run 4 races this year. Being as there are 12 months in this year, this means I will need to run a race every 3 months. And no, I did NOT need my calculator for that one. Keeping with said logic, I will need to run my first race either at the end of March or the very beginning of April, the second race by the end of June or beginning of July, and so on and so on.  I think you get the idea.  I will be sure to keep this blog updated when I register for these races.

The third goal I set for myself this year was to begin my schooling for my Bachelor's Degree in Law/Legal Studies.  This goal is very easy.  Before the New Year, I already submitted all my information and now I'm simply waiting on the school to let me know if there is room for me in the program for this semester (Spring) or if I'll have to wait until the next semester (Summer).  Look at that! Goal already met! .....well, almost.

Lastly, I made a goal to start Daily Meditations.  Well, I'm here to say that it is 4 (almost 5) days into the year and I have not meditated...not even ONCE! Oh man....I'm failing at this goal already. I downloaded the app.....I have the time....I just have not done it.  Well, that's going to change.  I have decided to start having 5 minutes (at least) of meditation in the mornings BEFORE I get the kids out of bed.  THAT is my plan to achieve this goal. 

So there you have it.  My outline to my master plan of how I'm going to achieve these 4 goals I have set out for myself this year.  I am a big believer in planning.  But as my brother once said, having a plan is great, but WORKING THE PLAN is what gets you results. 

How true, how true.

Until next time kiddos....