Getting Fit · Uncategorized

Fitness Friday – Fitting in Fitness

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This past week I have been visiting my family out of town. I am sure you can all relate when I say that vacations and fitness often do not go hand in hand. Finding the time and motivation to stay on track when you are not on your normal routine can often be difficult. For me, on a regular week there are times it is hard to stay on track, so when away it can be even harder.

This week, I tried to focus on fitting in fitness in smaller units. Instead of an hour workout, I tried several 10 minute increments. Whether it was running up and down the stairs or walking places instead of driving or a few squats here and there, I was consciously trying to get exercise in when I could. Even when I took my son to the local pool, I made sure I was doing a few laps or running on the spot in the water while he played. A little bit adds up when you consciously think about it.  Luckily, I was also able to fit in an Aquafit class there as well.  I also have to thank Pokemon Go this week as we did quite a bit of walking around town trying to  “catch them all.”

Food, however, wasn’t the easiest to keep on track.  I was on vacation, so of course I was tempted on a daily basis to indulge.  Thank goodness for the MyFitnessPal app for keeping me pretty much on track.  Recording everything I was consuming made it much easier to realize when it was time to pull back to reigns and snack on some veggies sticks instead.

While away, I probably spent 90% of my time in my bathing suit and for the first time since I can remember, I didn’t feel like I needed to cover up.  I was perfectly fine walking around without throwing something over my suit.  I am finally starting to feel comfortable in my own skin.  Sure I still have a bunch of weight to lose and my legs have way more cellulite than I would like but such is life.  It was even to the point that I was comfortable enough to ask my Mom to actually take a photo of me in my bathing suit.  And, I wasn’t even horrified with the result.  I was actually quite ok with it.

swimsuit

Getting back into my normal routine after vacation is never easy but this time I am more determined than ever to stick with this health/fitness kick.  Back to healthier eating and back to the gym for me.  Wish me luck.

Weekly Accountability

Exercise:  2 x gym visits, 1 x 45 minute walk, 1x Aquafit class
Food Management:  Stayed on track 5 of the 7 days (Not always the best choices but will do better this week)

This is also the final week the Team #fabFITbloggers are a part of the Kindness in Demand July fitness challenge.  I am excited to see how we stacked up!!!

 

Parenting/Life · Uncategorized

Why we just can’t get enough of the beach.

toes in the sand

Toes in the sand, warm all over, the sound of the waves, what isn’t there to love about the beach?  Correct me if I am wrong, but you don’t often hear people wanting to take cold, arctic vacations do you?

On a whim, we decided to take advantage of the warm weather and head to our local sand and surf.  We’re almost (sadly) halfway through the summer and we haven’t had nearly as many visits I would have liked.  There is just something about enjoying the day at the beach that never gets old with me.

Our essentials:

  • Sunscreen (our beach trip won’t even start without a SPF 60)
  • Sunglasses
  • Bathing suits
  • Towels
  • Hats
  • Blanket
  • Foldable chair
  • Water bottles
  • Buckets, shovels and other sandcastle/water toys
  • Snacks

We learned the hard way that if you want to purchase any snacks, be sure to have cash on you.  None of the on site vendors had debit (and I never seem to carry cash).  And if there has been significant rain recently, be sure to check to see that there aren’t any water quality issues.  Nothing worse than going to the beach and not being able to swim.

Within moments of unpacking and getting somewhat settled, my son was heading to the water.  No matter how cold that water was, he was going in.  Sounds good, but if it’s just the two of us, if he goes in I am going in too.  This time luckily the water was quite enjoyable.  We waded out to the sandbar where the water was a bit warmer too.  I think he could have spent hours out there if I’d let him.

When I decided to head out of the water, he was more than happy to start creating his sandcastle masterpiece.  Within a few moments, he had made acquaintances with a little boy from nearby and they had a blast with their creation.

Sandcastle

And I could sit back and relax and just enjoy my surroundings.  Aside from the photos I took, my phone was on silent and put away.  Purely unplugged and enjoying the time together.   My favorite part of the day was when I told my son it was time to reapply the sunscreen, he ran into the water to get himself wet and then rolled in the sand.  That was his version of sunscreen.

Sandy boy

The long, miserable Canadian winters have us taking every advantage of the few summer days we get to enjoy.  At the end of the day, it was hard for either of us to drag ourselves away.  It was only the promise that we would return the next possible day that made it better.

Beach life

If you need to reach me this summer, you might just find me at the beach.

 

Getting Fit · Uncategorized

Fitness Friday – Don’t trust the scale

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Anyone who has ever been on a fitness journey will probably agree the scale is not always your friend.  In my case, a lot of times, it is not my friend at all.  I will work so hard and at the end of the week, barely any movement.  It definitely can be discouraging.

Only in the past year or so I have begun to only use the scale as a reference point and not something to base my motivation on.   I try to base my success on how my clothes feel and comments from other people.  In the past week alone, I have had several people comment on me losing weight.  However, I step on the scale and it has barely moved.

Scale

I know there is the age old statement of “muscle weighs more than fat”.  By no means am I any sort of fitness expert, but a 1lb of fat weighs the same as a 1lb of muscle.  They both weigh 1lb.  From what I understand is that muscle is leaner than fat, so a 1lb of muscle takes up less space than a 1lb of fat.    Therefore, if you lose  1lb of fat but gain 1lb of muscle, the scale will not show a loss of any sort but your body will have changed.

It’s all just a numbers game.  Not one I am happy to play.

Nothing feels better than putting on something that use to be tight fitting only to find it lose on you.  To me, that is more motivating and rewarding than anything else.  Being able to wear a size smaller feels so much better than saying you lost 5lbs.  It is something real, something tangible.

Fit

I have been faithfully tracking my food and exercise but now I think I really should be tracking my measurements.  Maybe I am totally missing it, but I can’t seem to find somewhere to track it on the Fitbit or MyFitnessPal apps.  However, I have just found I can track it on my PC via the MyFitnessPal website.  (If anyone knows how to on either app, please let me know.)  I look forward to seeing these results.

Tape measure

This next week I am taking a much needed vacation from work.  Pretty much a stay-cation but being out of my normal 9-5 routine, I am sure staying on track will have it’s challenges.  I am pledging to try and make good choices with my food.  As for exercise, we downloaded PokemonGO when it finally became available in Canada, so I am sure we will be taking a lot of long walks to catch some Pokemon.

Weekly Accountability

Exercise:  4x gym visits, 2 x 20 minute walk
Food Management:  Stayed on track 5 of the 7 days (Sunday was definitely a cheat day and the calories in 3 slices of pizza sure add up)

Don’t forget to keep cheering on Team #fabFITbloggers!!!

 

Recipes · Uncategorized

Versatile Veggie/Ham Egg “burgers”

 

finished

After going through my refrigerator the other day and was seeing what I had to use up before they went bad,  I found had a 1/2 dozen eggs,  a bunch of veggies and some leftover ham.  Also wanting to be able to make something I could use for several meals this week, I through together these egg “burgers”.  Using a larger muffin tin, the end product was a burger size patty that I find gives it much more versatility.    They can be eaten as a main with some additional veggies on the side or as part of a sandwich/burger.

These freeze quite nicely and can be reheated easily in the microwave or thawed overnight and reheated in the oven.

With harvest season soon upon us, there are so many variations of this recipe that you could make depending on what veggies you have on hand.  I have seen similar recipes where grated cheese has been added.  For this recipe, I opted out of the cheese, planning to add it to my “burger” instead.

 

Veggie/Ham Egg "burgers"

Stuffed with veggies and ham, this egg “burger” can be used for any meal of the day.

  • 6 each eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup diced sweet peppers ((I used a bit of each for a variety of color))
  • 1/4 cup green onions
  • 1/2 cup diced spinach
  • 1/3 cup diced ham
  • 1 tsp spices ((I used Epicure's Fine Herbs))
  1. Preheat oven to 375. Dice sweet peppers, onions, spinach and ham.
  2. In a medium heated pan with a bit of Pam, add the peppers and saute for a minute or 2, then add the onion and ham. After another minute or 2 add the spinach. Stir and remove from heat.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, milk and spices.
  4. Pour equal amounts of the egg mixture into a well greased muffin tin. I used the larger muffin tin (6 per pan) as I want the end product more “burger” size. Add equal amounts of the veggie/ham mixture to each muffin.
  5. Cook for 20 minutes or until toothpick comes clean.
  6. Let sit until cooled and remove from pan. If you wish to freeze, let them cool completely.

Parenting/Life · Uncategorized

#ProjectStandForLove

Lately it seems like I am constantly reading posts from fellow bloggers about how this world has brought them to tears and it breaks my heart.  We are worried about the world that we are having to bring our children up in and what the future holds for them.  Thankfully there are people like Bethanie from The Garcia Diaries, Rah of Wire and Honey and Mandy of The Blue Evelope in this world, that want to make it a better place.  They have come up with the #ProjectStandForLove initiative that I was more that happy to promote and take part in.

Project-Stand-for-Love

In their words …“All you have to do is write a sweet note, deliver it to a friend/neighbor/stranger, and share the act on social media with the hashtag #projectstandforlove! By following these simple steps, you are SPREADING KINDNESS AND LOVE! It’s so easy and it’s life changing!

Yesterday, my son and I decide to try and make our little bit of difference in the world.  We decided that we wanted to show our local firefighters how much we appreciate them putting their lives on the line day in and day out for us.  We decided to bring them some cookies that we could enjoy on their down time.  We arrived at the firehouse and the firefighter that greeted us seemed genuinely shocked and grateful for our little delivery.  To my son’s delight, we were invited in to see the firetrucks.  We were just stepping into the garage when the bells starting ringing that they had a call to go on.  The firefighter was so apologetic that they had to leave and invited us back for another visit anytime.  I am not sure what was more exciting for my son, seeing the fire truck or being there when they actually got a call to go out to!  We hope the firefighters all returned safely from their call.

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Remember, it doesn’t take a lot to show a friend, a neighbor or a complete stranger that there is kindness and love in the world.  If you would like to do your part, print out this note, add your own words of kindness and perform an act of kindness!  It’s that easy to help change the world!

Getting Fit · Uncategorized

Fitness Friday – Staying Motivated

Bloggers

Yup, it’s about that time in every fitness journey that I have tried that something throws me off track and I lose all motivation.  It could be a really bad eating day or a several day stretch where I can’t get my exercise in and I get completely derailed.  I am not going to lie, at the beginning of the week, I started to feel this way but this time I didn’t let it defeat me.

On Track

I have a bit more motivation this time having to blog about it each week.   Being accountable to someone other than myself have really helped me stay motivated and wanting to stay on track.   I am also thankful for keeping my FitBit charged and on my wrist constantly.   Today I am on track to be 10,000+ steps for 13 days in a row.  Historically, if at bedtime, I wasn’t at my 10,000 steps I would chalked it up as a busy day at work and not able to leave my desk and just go to bed.  The past 2 nights I haven’t been even near my goal and wasn’t about to let my track record be broken so instead of sitting on the couch watching TV, I have walked in place to get those steps in.  Sure it’s not high impact cardio, but I can at least say that I did it!

Another big motivator this week came from the Kindness In Demand #DidSomething campaign.  If you recall, last week I mentioned that This Messy Season blogger and I had teamed up to be apart of their fitness challenge for the month of July.  And we found out on Monday that we were the Week 1 high scorers!!!!  It definitely gave me some motivation to keep on track this week.  Yeah Team #fabFITbloggers!!!!!

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So at this point,  I feel like I have my exercise game down and able to keep it on track.  Now, it’s my healthy eating that really needs some focus and work.  I have been very conscious about my grocery shopping and trying to only bring good, healthy foods into the house.  If it isn’t there to be eaten, I can’t eat it.  With harvest season soon upon us, it’s going to make meals full of fresh locally grown fruits and vegetables so much easier and tastier.  However, it’s been a stinking hot week and have had no ambition to turn the stove on to make it even warmer in the house.  It’s times like that that it is just too easy to go out and let someone else cook.  Having a bit of a meal plan this week and thinking about making dinners that didn’t involve a lot of cooking has helped a lot, but there have been a few trips for ice cream to cool us off.    A little treat here and there is fine, I just need to make sure I stay on track and accounting for it each day.

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Once again this week, in the spirit of accountability, since my last post:
Exercise:  4x gym visits, a nice of dancing with friends (great exercise),  30 minute walk
Food Management:  Stayed on track 6 of the 7 days (Nobody’s perfect all the time, that is how life is!)

Hope you all have a great week and don’t forget to cheer on Team #fabFITbloggers!!!

Parenting/Life · Uncategorized

A Single Mom’s Pity Party


The other day I had a party.  Guest count = 1.

It was one of those days when I just wanted to wallow and feel sorry for myself.  I wanted to think about everything that I wasn’t happy about in my life and about and be miserable about it.  I didn’t want to put on my smiley face and pretend everything was perfect.   I didn’t invite anyone to my party, I didn’t want them there either.  I wanted to feel even lonelier and having people there wouldn’t help.  I didn’t want to leave the house.  I just wanted to be 100% miserable!

My very own personal pity party!!

Poor me

What was I so upset about?  I was sick of feeling alone, I was tired of seeing everyone else with their significant others all happy and loving and I didn’t have my own person, I was missing my boy as it was Daddy’s weekend, I was mad about that whole situation and how there is nothing I can do to change it, I was tired of constantly feeling tired,  I was tired of losing the same 5lbs only over and over again, I was tired of looking in the mirror and not being happy what I saw, I was unhappy about not having enough money ever, I was tired of feeling like a broken record with my complaints to my family and friends, I was tired of seeing all the bad things happening in the world on TV.  It was everything and anything.

And then, like a kid’s birthday party, it was over in a couple of hours.

I got up, brushed myself off and said “damn it, get over it”.   Sure, everything isn’t picture perfect, but I have so many things in my life to happy and thankful about.

I have:

  1. A son who is my absolute world.  Just thinking about him brings the biggest smile to my face and warms my heart.
  2. A family that is always there to listen to me and love me, no matter what.
  3. Friends that listen to my broken record and always make me feel welcome.  No 5th wheel.
  4. A roof over my head, food in my belly and clothes on my back.
  5. A job to go to each day so I can provide for myself and my son.
  6. My health and so much more……..

There are so many others out there that can’t say they have some of or any of these things, so I am truly blessed.  Dwelling what I don’t have, doesn’t solve anything and is no way to live life and definitely not a kind of life I ever want my son to be subjected too.

It was a great party that I needed to have and now it is over.  My only last complaint, I didn’t get a looty bag at the end of this party.  😦

empty-present-1306483-1599x1066

Getting Fit · Uncategorized

Fitness Friday + Kindness in Demand team up

Bloggers

With a holiday weekend and travelling, it isn’t always easy to stay on track.  I tried my best and even when I didn’t make the best of choices,  I still made sure I tracked it so I wouldn’t fall so far off the wagon that I couldn’t find my way back.  Monday, I started with a clean slate and hauled myself back to the gym.  Hey, everyone is allowed to fall of the wagon once and a while, it is only human nature.  You just need to be sure to get up, brush yourself off and get back on track.

All me

 

This week,  This Messy Season and I have teamed up (Team #fabFITbloggers) and participating in the July #Didsomething Initiative with Kindness In Demand.  For the month of July we, along with 3 other teams, will be focusing on our health and fitness.  Each week we will calculate our points, using the preset point system.  The team with the highest ending points will be the “winners” for the week.    We will be using to hashtag #DidSomething as part of this campaign so you can follow along and cheer Team #fabFITbloggers along this month!

Photo courtesy of @kindness.in.demand (be sure to follow them on Instagram)
Photo courtesy of @kindness.in.demand (be sure to follow them on Instagram)

This whole fitness/eating right and losing some weight has really gotten real for me now.  Between teaming up with all of the #fabFITbloggers for our weekly fitness posts and now being a part of the Kindness In Demand #DidSomethingCampaign,  I am not only accountable to myself, I am accountable to anyone who reads my blog and anyone else’s blog who is involved.  I definitely don’t want to fail publicly so this is GREAT motivation.  Doing it on my own behind close doors, it is so easy to push it all off to tomorrow.  Now, there is no escape.  Thanks everyone for helping me out this with journey!

I have definitely noticed that I actually stop and think about what I am making for my meals these days and if I have to stop while I am out to get something to eat, I am making better choices.  For example, the other day, I had forgotten my lunch and instead of hitting the drive thru, I went to our local Farm Boy and picked up this amazing Detox Salad.  If you haven’t tried, it is a must!!!!

Salad

And with my fitness, again, I am making better choices.  Earlier this week, the hydro went out at my office building.  Not sure how long it was going to be off, I decided to make the best of my time and walk on the spot and get my steps in while I was waiting.  Before I knew it, 40 minutes had past.  In doing that, I got my 10,000 steps in shortly after noon.  On a work day, that is nearly impossible for me.  I am truly trying to adopt the whole #DidSomething attitude.

Once again this week, in the spirit of accountability, since my last post:
Exercise:  2x gym visits, 1- 40 minute walking on spot in office, 2- 20 minute walks
Food Management:  Stayed on track 7 of the 7 days (Not always the best choices but stayed in calorie range.)

Hope you all have a great week and don’t forget to cheer on Team #fabFITbloggers!!!