Horrible. Yes I said it. Who thought this no carb thing was a good idea? I don’t know what I was thinking. I can understand minimizing the amount of carbs you eat, but completely stopping has left me feeling blah. I don’t know if it is because I stopped cold turkey or what, but this just isn’t going to work for me.

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I missed my quinoa and brown rice. Last week I only ate chicken, wild salmon, eggs, nitrate free turkey bacon, dairy (eggs and cheese), and vegetables (spinach and whole green beans). The food was delicious, but I just felt bloated. In hindsight, maybe I should have gone off the carbs gradually. I do know one thing, and that is I am never doing that again. Or maybe I should do more research…

bloating

After doing some research, I realized that I was missing something key in my diet that I get from my carbs and that is fiber! I came to this revelation after reading this Live Strong article about gas and bloating.

fiber

Benefits of Fiber (Source)

1. Normalizes bowel movements. Dietary fiber increases the weight and size of your stool and softens it.

2. Helps maintain bowel health. A high-fiber diet may lower your risk of developing hemorrhoids and small pouches in your colon (diverticular disease). Some fiber is fermented in the colon.

3. Lowers cholesterol levels. Soluble fiber found in beans, oats, flaxseed and oat bran may help lower total blood cholesterol levels by lowering low-density lipoprotein, or “bad,” cholesterol levels. Studies also have shown that fiber may have other heart-health benefits, such as reducing blood pressure and inflammation.

4. Helps control blood sugar levels. In people with diabetes, fiber — particularly soluble fiber — can slow the absorption of sugar and help improve blood sugar levels. A healthy diet that includes insoluble fiber may also reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

5. Aids in achieving healthy weight. High-fiber foods generally require more chewing time, which gives your body time to register when you’re no longer hungry, so you’re less likely to overeat. Also, a high-fiber diet tends to make a meal feel larger and linger longer, so you stay full for a greater amount of time. And high-fiber diets also tend to be less “energy dense,” which means they have fewer calories for the same volume of food.

Here is a list of foods that are high in fiber from MayoClinic.org

  1. Raspberries
  2. Pears (with skin)
  3. Apples (with skin)
  4. Bananas
  5. Whole wheat pasta
  6. Bran
  7. Oatmeal
  8. Whole wheat or multi-grain bread
  9. Lentils
  10. Black beans
  11. Lima beans
  12. Almonds
  13. Pistachios
  14. Artichoke
  15. Green peas
  16. Broccoli
  17. Sweet corn
  18. Brussel sprouts
  19. Carrots
  20. Baked potatoes (with skin)

 Most of the items were essential parts of my diet. I don’t know what I was thinking this week. I know not to have those thoughts anymore lol. I guess the real reason is that I wanted to drop 2-3 lbs before my trip, since I know I will gain about 5lbs lol.

I think I get in my own way. I know what I need to do, I just need to rid the urges of immediate results and become comfortable with delayed gratification. I know I said I won’t ever do that again, but who knows…now that I know the foods that have fiber and are low carb, I may feel better. Maybe I didn’t let my body get used to the change. Whatever it is, I don’t want to ever feel like this again..=

If the low-carb thing works for you…God. Bless. You.

Have any of you ever tried these diet fads?

Every year I try to buy myself something for Christmas, I treat myself quite well throughout the year, so this year I decided to give myself a little something different, and guess what it didn’t cost me anything (How awesome is that!)

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1. Me Time- I am EXTREMELY busy nowadays. I seem to only have time for work and school. So this Christmas I am giving myself one of God’s most precious gifts…Time. I need to find balance to do things that make me happy and that help build my relationships. I know because of my schedule I don’t have lots of time, but at least once a week I will focus on me whether it’s a pampering session, reading a book,  or just spending quality time with family and friends.

2. Proper Nutrition and Exercise- Remember my Workout Wednesday posts? Yeah I know that it has been FOREVER and that’s because I have fallen off significantly. My eating habits have become terrible. All I do is snack…I have put on a little bit of weight that I am not too pleased about because of how my clothes fit and my overall appearance so I plan on fixing that ASAP. I need to be healthy, not just for my physical appearance, but just to live a longer life. I don’t want to worry about diabetes, high blood pressure, or anything else that could happen as a result of my diet.

3. Spiritual Renewal- For the last few months my spiritual life has been suffering. I thank God for his grace and mercy everyday, because if it was up to me to maintain his unconditional love and unmerited favor I would be in trouble. I don’t have an excuse or reason for why this has happened, but I have been experiencing great blessings, but also many spiritual convictions that have been weighing on my spirit, because of my lack of discipline and obedience to God’s word. I know what I need to do to get back on track spiritually and that will happen immediately.

4. Joy and Happiness- I wrote a post about joy and happiness back and February and I needed a reminder of what I wrote. Joy is internal and happiness is external. I need to do the things that bring long lasting joy, but also happiness in the moment. I feel like this is something that I am missing.

5. Love- I love me some me and I need to really walk in that mindset. I have to stop rejecting the love of others because I am afraid. I have to truly accept God’s unconditional love and appreciate the people that He brought into my life. I have to truly love my neighbor as myself, no matter the circumstances. I have to give my time, talents, and abilities that God has blessed me with because of his love for me.

So there you have my Christmas list. What’s on yours?

Once a week I workout with a personal trainer. He’s actually my coworker and he offered to train the entire staff. Only 4 of us took advantage of his offer and I don’t mind at all. We work out on Tuesdays and each week he targets a different area. This week the main focus besides my triceps was my abs.

abworkout
I will post an update next week on my results so far but my core was one of the main areas I wanted to focus on. The workout was on Tuesday and two days later I am still feeling the soreness! I guess my pervious ab workouts weren’t intense enough. He told me that one problem that many people have is that when they feel a little pain or burn in their muscles they rest and that is the worst thing to do. You must be consistent with the workout so your muscles can become stronger. If you take too long of a break it’s like you are starting from scratch again. It is ok to pause in between sets but it should not be too long to where your muscles return to their original state. Ok that was this weeks lesson now below you will find a list of the ab activities I did for my workout. I didn’t do all circuits straight through. I would work on my arms, shoulders, and hips in between. He says, “always let one muscle rest while you focus on the other.” So in between my ab circuits I would do other activities to rest my core.

Circuit 1 (3 reps)
1. 20 full sit ups
2. 20 half sit ups
3. 15 knee lifts in the captains chair
4. 20 side ab crunches (10 on each side)

Circuit 2 (2 reps)
1. Squat/Core rotation with 5 lb. weight (go in squat position hold 5 lb weight with both hands center for 2 counts, then to the right for 2 counts, then to the left for 2 counts, then back to the center for 2 counts) Do this 5x
2. 30 second superman
3. 30 second plank

Circuit 3 (2 reps)
1. 30 second plank touching knees simultaneously
2. 30 second superman with shoulder rotations
3. 30 second plank touching knees with alternating hands

Circuit 4 (3 reps)
1. 20 full sit ups
2. 20 half sit ups
3. 15 knee raises in captains chair
4. 20 side ab crunches (10 on each side)

Imagine this in addition to everything else I did. I dread Tuesdays! When it comes to targeting your abs you have to do more than sit-ups to see actual results. If you decide to try this workout let me know how it works out for you.

Hey my loves,

I have finally written down my workout goals and taking the necessary steps to achieve them. I took my measurements and everything. So here are my goals and I want to accomplish all of this by the end of April. I think that’s a fair timeline.

Goal Weight: 130 lbs- I gain most of my weight in my upper body. My face has gotten fatter, my arms are getting bigger and it’s not muscle, and my midsection is not bikini ready.

Target Areas for Toning: Thighs, Arms, Abs- this will require lots of cardio and strength training. I’ve been consistent the last week with my strength training, but I can’t tone muscle if it is covered in fat and so I need to step my cardio game up. I’ve been consistent with my lower body workout as well. The amount of squats and lunges I do is record breaking for me. I also started this ab challenge to tone that area. Dr. Oz says that a waist size over 32 inches means that you are at greater risk for heart disease. So I would like to lose about  3″-5″ off of my waist. I want to make sure that I am below 32. That’s the largest that it should be.

Miscellaneous: Improve my eating habits. I’ve really gotten better with this over the last month or so. I did have a few set backs, like when I went to Philly and one day at work when I was bombarded with every carb you could imagine. Since my small slip ups I’ve been increasing my water intake, my protein intake, and minimizing the amount of bad fat in my diet.

I’m seeing small results, but I am seeing something. I’m surprised at how much my upper body strength has improved. I gain most of my weight in my upper body so cardio is important and also strengthening my core, arms and shoulders.

I’m using my Prabal Gurung for Target dresses as measurements of progress. Both dresses were a little tight in the upper body so hopefully I see results soon because as soon as it gets warm I’m wearing those dresses!

Here is the new cardio circuit that I’m going to try. This is in between workouts that I have at my job’s bootcamp. The trainer said we need to do at lead 2-3 workouts in between our sessions. I had to go on YouTube to figure out how to do some of the moves but I have them down now. So here is the new circuit I’m starting today. I’ll do this 3 times this week in addition to other strengthening and core workouts.  I found it on Instagram by the way lol

I’ll report back next week on my progress.
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What are some of your fitness goals?

“Fitness is always in Fashion”

Ok so I was doing my daily rounds on my favorite blogs and magazine sites and came across this great video about making heels more comfortable. I know for me, sometimes when iw ear heels I can only last a few hours because my feet are killing me. Some of my heels are extremely comfortable, others are definitely just heels that you wear from the car to the dinner table at a restaurant.

Many of us will sacrifice our comfort for those 4inch, 5 or even 6inch heels. So on Glamour they posted a video showing an interesting way to rid the pain of heels and make them more comfortable. I can’t post the video but the trick is to tape your 3rd and 4th toe together before putting on heels. Yes tape your toes together with either scotch tape or medical tape. This reportedly allows at least another 30minutes of standing time in your heels. Of course this can only work with closed toe heels or boots and some peep-toes, so please do not tape your toes in sandals.

I will try this trick in the near future and see if it works.

Click here to watch the video.