Friday, July 25, 2014

PiYo - Week 3

Well, I'm off to a much stronger start for week three.

Fail to plan, plan to fail? I started the week with a shopping trip to load up on my lunches for the week so I won't be tempted by all the smells of the restaurants around. Yes, they are instant/frozen lunches, but it's better than a chipotle burrito, no?

Monday - I did both Define: Lower Body and Define: Upper Body. Even though I haven't been going at this very well, I have noticed that the moves are already getting a little easier and I can hold them much longer.

Tuesday - I did both Define: Upper Body and Core. There's a lot of the same moves, so in the future if I double up, I don't think I'll put those two together. I like the variation in Core though. It's 30 minutes and you're going from moves on your back to a lot of plank moves so you get plenty of wrist rest (say that 3 times fast!). There are definitely some challenging moves, so I really like that they encourage you to start in beginner and see if you can go to advanced. If not, just keep working at it. There were so many times where I would think something in my head and then Chalene would answer it like she was there, which was actually weird. Yet, she made the program so she would know what people are thinking at different points, right?

Food intake was much better. I had a Healthy Choice Weight Watcher lunch, some multi grain crackers for an afternoon snack and dinner was baked chicken, pasta, broccoli and carrots in a garlic seasoning. Slowly but surly I'm getting the hang of this healthy-ish lifestyle.

Wednesday - I didn't work out on Wednesday. Tuesday I went to the Dr. had some blood drawn and a tetanus shot. The Dr. said my arm might be tender for a few days. Excuse me? Might? Tuesday my arm was great. I thought I wouldn't feel anything. Tuesday night everything changed. Anytime I rolled on to my arm, I sprung awake and cringed in pain. Needless to say, PiYo and pressure on the ol arm weren't going to happen. Instead I went and ate the most delicious bacon cheeseburger and watched the Aquatennial parade and life was great!

Thursday - Thursday was another day of rest because of my arm. Maybe I'm a baby, but seriously, tetanus shots hurt. It's Friday and the pain has subsided drastically so I plan on doubling up tonight with Sweat  and Define: Upper.

Even though I haven't followed the plan to a 'T', I'm definitely noticing some changes as far as how my clothes are fitting. When I went to the Aquatennial parade the other night I thought I'd try and slip on a pair of jeans that had always been uncomfortably tight and I'd have to wear them around and do some lunges to break them in before they were comfortable. Wednesday, I slid those bad boys on and no belly over hang :)

My outer thighs seem to be slimming down, stomach is not as lumpy and I'm noticing more tone in my arms. My eating hasn't been top notch by any means. I'm definitely going to take the upcoming weekend to make sure I have the right foods in the house. If I'm seeing small changes after just 3 weeks of ho-humming it, I know I'll see more drastic changes if I ace the food part and sticking to getting my work outs in daily.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

PiYo - Week 2

After the weekend I had I'm definitely struggling to get myself on track for week two.

Saturday I doubled up and did Define: Lower Body and Sweat. It was awesome! I was definitely sweating and after a week of doing the program, I was finally starting to feel like I could go through the moves rather smooth.

It's currently Tuesday and I haven't done a workout since, but I plan on doubling up again tonight by doing Define: Upper Body and Sweat, and on Wednesday I will do Define: Lower Body and whatever else is on the schedule for the day.

My food intake has been rather poor as of late as well. Part of it has to do that since I'm older, my hangovers last for 48 hours and no food sounds like it's going to stay with me for the day. But, with that being said, I'm getting in a ton of water.

When I went to a #POPSUGAR event a couple weeks ago, I was gifted this water bottle. It's pretty bomb. I've only used lemon so far, but would like to try a lime, or an orange perhaps.

I got in my workout on Wednesday before packing up and heading out of town for the rest of the weekend on Thursday. I had every intention on getting up to the cabin Thursday evening, popping in my DVD and rocking out a workout and doing the same on Friday morning. But when I arrived, the neighbors were out at their fire and I had to go say 'hey-o'. Then I stayed up way too late and the sparkling blue waters called to me Friday. So, big time fail.

I'm basically calling week 2 a complete wash. Let me sign off with my head hanging low. Very, very low.

Here's to week three and getting off on the right foot!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Weekend Review 18: 2nd Annual Cousins Cabin Weekend

Thursday after work I made the drive up to the cabin to take in the calm before the storm. A few neighbors were up so I spent the night at their fire before calling it a night. It was the first time I had ever been at the cabin alone, so it was comforting to know that there were people close by.

Friday morning started with a booze/ice run before relaxing in the sun all afternoon as I waited very impatiently for my cousins to arrive!

Mike and Jenna were the first to arrive followed closely by Miranda, then the newlyweds Pam and Doug. It didn't take long for the second wave of people to start arriving, Kari, Kayla and Joe, Marie and Dan and Carl, Cole and Megan, Pat and Summer and Ashley. Everyone set up their tents and headed down to the lake to get the fun started.

We started with a round of beer darts, which we luckily made it through without any injuries. Joe and Pat manned the grill and with a little help from everyone, we had quite the spread of side dishes.

We finished the first night of cousins weekend with the Kotoski's coming over from their cabin and celebrating the recent marriage of my cousin Pam to her new husband Doug with bubbly and cake and a dance party on the deck before making it to the fire, passing Boone's Farm and enjoying the fact that we all get along and are able to get together with no care in the world for the weekend.

This time last year I did not survive and there was a bit of a family emergency. So since I was the sober one on Saturday, I brought one of my cousins home and our weekend ended. Not this year. We both made it to Saturday and were the final few remaining.
The wind was a bit of an issue. Made playing games and taking the boat/toys out on the water a no-go, but a few of us still took advantage of being on the lake and spent some time on the rafts floating and swimming. There was a lot of giant jenga, bags and Kan Jam. A lot of party ball action, dance parties, good music, tons of amazing food and great company!
The 2nd Annual Cousins Cabin Weekend got totally Surgical and was one helluva good time. Can't wait until next year to do it all over again with the craziest mother effers I'm lucky enough to call my family.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Easy Peasy Chicken Fried Rice

Well folks, it's Wednesday and the city of Minneapolis is back to it's pretty 'ol self. The All Star Game ended last night and the wall paper hung about the city is being removed piece by piece. Minneapolis and Minnesota as a whole really represented itself well.

On the final day of the big event, I spent my lunch time watching the Red Carpet All Star Parade, then I had to go back to work with the rest of the locals.

Ron Gardenhire, Derek Jeter, Charlie Blackmon, Glen Perkins, Yu Darvish and Bullseye the Target dog 
Shout out to Glen Perkins and the Twins/AL for the awesome win!

After work, I met my parents at Seven for a drink before they headed off to the All Star Game. It got me hankering some Asian cuisine. On my bus ride home I tried to remember the 5 items I had stocked in my fridge and the biggest item was left over brown rice. It got me thinking that I could make some tasty fried rice since I also had a chicken breast, chopped carrots, eggs and half an onion. Those are were my five items in the fridge.

Since I needed just a couple more items and wine, I headed down to Trader Joe's for some soy sauce, edemame, corn and I threw in some pot stickers for good measure.

I love my new neighborhood, but all the walkable grocery stores are so expensive and the closest liquor store is cash only. So TJ's it was.

Here's what you'll need:
Olive oil
Veggies of your choosing (I used onions, corn, edemame)
Rice - old is best
2 Eggs
Soy sauce
First things first. Scramble up your eggs and set aside. Second, cook up your chicken and season to your liking. I used a little salt, chili pepper and cayenne pepper for a kick. Set your chicken aside with the eggs. Heck, why not get crazy and introduce the chicken to eggs. Guess we know which one came first!

Third things...well...third. Heat up about a tablespoon of some evoo in a warm pan and once it starts to sizzle, add that left over rice. That would be the stir fry part of the dish. Finally mix in whatever veggies you want and the chicken/egg combo. Pour a little soy sauce in and let the medley of deliciousness come together as it sits on the stove, on low with a cover on, for about 5 minutes or until your veggies are no longer frozen.

Dish up and enjoy!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Weekend Review 17

Hello world. Today is the biggest struggle ever, but the weekend was so worth it.

I went in to the weekend thinking I would be sleeping in and have early nights. Be able to finish settling in to my new place and just re-energize for the new week and maybe take in some All Star events. Boy-oh-boy was I wrong.

Friday evening I met some friends at Tin Fish for a little happy hour that turned in to a little bar crawl.

The nats were a bit too intense for us so we hopped over to Republic for some more beverages and later to Bone Yard to enjoy some patio time. We ordered a 'pitcher' of a drink with Blackberry tea and sage and next thing we know we were brought a giant drink dispenser.  Definitely not the 'pitcher' we were expecting.

Saturday morning I was able to sleep in a little bit and take my time during the day. I got in an awesome PiYo workout that I'm still feeling today. My friend Laura was in town so she came over and we did an UpTown bar crawl. She used to live near by and wanted to check out the new locations. Little did she know, almost everything is new!

We started at the rooftop of Amore Victoria since they didn't have a rooftop a couple years back. Our next stop was Coup D'etat, which used to be an old empty parking lot next to a cowboy bar.

A few friends met us out and we brought the party to Bar Louie where we found a lounge area outside and had a few drinks.

After Bar Louie, Laura and I made our way to Bone Yard to end the night.

Laura hung around for a bit on Sunday morning before having to tackle the 6+ hour car ride back to KC. I did not envy her one bit.

Sunday was the real doozie of the weekend. Barbette is a French restaurant a block from my apartment and they were hosting a Bastille Day block party. A few friends came over to my place late afternoon for some beverages and then we hopped across the street to take in the festivities.

It was so much fun. They had live music all day, vendors, food and just a whole lot of action. We found Sun Drop slushies with your choice of vodka or whisky and we stuck with those through the evening.

The music was a great lineup of popular Minnesota musicians and the night ended with a brass band and some fire twirlers.

Happy Bastille Day!

Friday, July 11, 2014

PiYo Challenge - Getting Started

These PiYo posts are basically a daily recap for myself each week to keep me in check and on schedule. If I post it, then it holds me accountable to finish. If you choose to read these and see me slacking, give me a virtual slap across the face and tell me to get my shiz in check! I will not turn down some tough love if it means I finish this program and go at it with all I've got.

Day 2. Tuesday I did the first real work out Define: Lower Body. It wasn't hard in the sense that you are fatigued and out of breath, it was hard in the sense that just holding your own body weight is exhausting. The workout was only 25 minutes, but it was enough to break a sweat for me. Plus, you really don't have an excuse to not give 25 minutes towards getting fit and healthy.

After the workout I had my first shakeology. I tried chocolate first and just blended it with water and a cup of frozen raspberries. I've tried other powders before, so I was prepared to try and gulp this down as fast as I possibly could. It was actually really delicious and I spent some time genuinely enjoying the drink while preparing some carrot sticks for the week.

*Side note: If there's one thing my mom has taught me, it's to buy organic carrots. Trust. It makes all the difference.

Day 3. Wednesday I started the day with another shakeology, only this time it was the greenberry. When I ordered my challenge pack, I thought I ordered chocolate and vanilla, so I was really disappointed when the package came and greenberry was inside. From all the reviews I read, it sounded like eating grass. I don't know about you, but when I put something in my mouth, I at least want it to taste good.  Unless I win Wimbledon of course, then I'll eat the grass.

Wednesday's workout was Define: Upper Body, and again is just 20-25 minutes. There was a lot of push-ups and planks. What I'm liking so far is that they show basically the three levels of each move. Beginner, intermediate and advanced. A few of the moves I can do the advanced, but most I'm going at beginner. Especially the push-ups. I have a very weak upper body and triceps push-ups are not my friend.

Day 4. Thursday has been a bit of a fail. Honestly, I feel like the third/fourth day of any new routine is the hardest day. Especially when it comes to food. I ran out of hard boiled eggs, so I just packed my greenberry shakeology, cantaloupe and carrots. Once lunch time rolled around, I could literally hear the food trucks calling my name. One in particular, Dandelion Kitchen, has the best ham & brie sandwich. So, I splurged. It's Farmers Market Thursday, I'm weak and I needed my fix. I'm sorry. Actually, no, I'm not sorry. Everything was organic and on the list of approved foods, except the ham.

I'm also going to a brewery birthday happy hour after work. I'm constantly telling myself I can only have one drink, then I must go home and get in day 4's routine which is Sculpt.

BREAKING NEWS: I had two beers and a buffalo chicken pizza. Then I went to Butcher and the Boar and had another beer. I then took the bus home and proceeded to have another drink while watching This Is 40 and I did not to the day 4 workout.

The plan? Double up on Saturday to get back on track with the schedule. This is the exact reason why starting next week, I'm going to get the workouts in before work. I like having my evenings open for socializing and patios.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Beachbody Challenge: PiYo

Remember last week when I said I had an exciting package waiting for me at home? It was my Beachbody PiYo Challenge pack complete with Shakeology, PiYo DVD's, workout calendar etc.

I really need to get my rear in gear and when I came across PiYo from Jessica's blog, I was really intrigued.  PiYo is No weights, No jumps, which is exactly what I need with my old lady knees.

The challenge starts today. Monday July 7th and I'm going to be coming here to share with you how I'm doing with the workouts, eating and toning/losing lbs.

It's a 60 day challenge which will bring me right up near my 30th birthday. I would love nothing more than to be able to really rock a bikini over Labor Day weekend with all my friends and family while celebrating entering a new decade.

The bonus about moving right before this challenge is that the only thing in my fridge at the moment is a pitcher of water, a bottle of prosecco, a box of hard cider and my left over flat bread from dinner. This gives me a completely clean platform to start from. I don't have to go through and purge all the bad food, I just have to keep the bad food from coming in to my home.

What I'm loving so far, is that Beachbody made this incredibly simple to understand as far as what I need to eat and how much. I worked out my servings and am heading to the grocery store to load up.

Coming attcha on Tuesday now...

I'm not exactly sure how I'll share this challenge whether it be daily or just whenever I flipping feel like it.

Last night I started with the Alignment DVD. I'm not a yogi so it was quite beneficial for someone like me who doesn't know what all the moves are, to sit and watch and practice each move.

Dinner was so-so. I made homemade chicken fajitas with onions and green peppers. If you are my mother reading this right now, no, you don't have to re-read that. Yes, onions and green peppers.That wasn't the so-so part. That would be the corn tortillas. I think I'll be bringing those to the cabin to feed to the fish. Next time it'll be a fajita salad.

My plan is to follow the workout calendar that came with the program. This week I'm going to do each workout at night while I'm still working on settling in and getting everything squared away (tonight I get to spend at Comcast. It's ok. You can be jealous).

Next week I'm really hoping that, since I have so much extra time living closer to work, I'll get my PiYo workouts in when I wake up so I have my evenings free to go on walks/runs around the lakes!

In the off chance that you want to see what I'm eating in more detail, you can check that out here.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Weekend Review 16: 4th of July

Wednesday after work I jumped in my car and headed North for a long holiday weekend. The drive was a breeze and with one stop to pick up some beer, I was at the cabin in just under two hours!
Hello Wisconsin!
We went to Jed's for dinner. I got the Jed's grilled cheese which is a grilled cheese sandwich loaded with cheese, bacon and pickles in the sandwich. For North woods food, they really do a fine job, the price tag isn't too shabby either. 10 drinks, 3 apps and 4 entrees = $50.00. Now, that's where it's at!

The whole weekend is starting to blur together. Each day started with mimosas in the sun, and a mix of country music, raft floating, paddleboarding, boat rides, Busch Light, fires with the neighbors, bags, delicious dinners, Butterscotch Schnaaps, fireworks, etc.


One night all the neighbors came over to our fire and we passed around a bottle of Butterscotch Schnaaps. The first night it came out, I passed, but quickly learned my lesson. That stuff is delicious and as everyone kept saying, it would be amazing on ice cream or pancakes!

There's no need to leave the comfort of your dock to find a good firework show when everyone on the lake is doing a stand up job. Every where you turned you'd see a sparkle in the sky and the rumble of the firework echo across the lake followed by applause and cheering for some awesome shows.


 Life at the lake... it's exhausting!

Sunday morning I was up bright and early to beat the traffic. I had a big day ahead of me. It was moving day! Earlier I had brought a couple car loads of clothes and smaller items to my new place, so Sunday Kari, my dad and I loaded up my furniture and hauled it 20 miles and up 2.5 flights of stairs to my new apartment in UpTown!

It's teeny tiny, but it's perfect for me. I get scared if I breathe too loud so having a little place is just fine. Less places to check for a boogey man before going to bed.