Friday, January 24, 2014

Fitness Log: 1/24/2014 No Equipment Workout

Another crazy Friday... another unmotivated Friday.  However, I sucked it up and gave this No-Equipment Workout from FitSugar a try.  Instead of doing 3 rounds of each circuit, I only did it once through, which proved to be sufficient.  Man, do I have some shaping up to do.

Let me just say - this circuit plan is outstanding.  I highly recommend this routine for those who are trying to jumpstart their workout plan and motivation.  Do as many as you can physically handle.  Embrace the sweat and challenge.

An extra bonus:
The lateral plank walk takes a little brain power - making this routine perfect for a morning workout.  I challenge you, for the first couple of reps, to pull this off without really having to think about what your feet and your arms are doing.  I am willing to bet you cross your feet...

Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Keep Moving!

Conference Calls in Real Life

You've almost made it through the work week and if your week was anything like mine, you need a little giggle to pick you up for these last 8 hours.  A coworker sent me this video under the tagline "Seems a Bit Familiar".  This is my workday... every. day.  Hopefully you'll find it as humorous as I did.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

#tbt Our First Trip Together

The first time my {now} husband and I took a trip was for New Year's 2009.  A friend and his wife invited us to Mammoth Mountain, California for four days of snowboarding and frivolous fun. Total, there were four couples sharing a condo up on the mountain. Why wouldn't we go?

Oh, that's right. I had never snowboarded.  In fact, I had never really been in snow. Yes, Arizona girl through and through. 

I pieced together gear from friends - except for the sweet Volcom snow jacket.  I also got "How to Get Off a Ski Lift" lessons from a friend, using dining room chairs and a lot of sarcasm. 

My biggest fear was not the snow, ski lift or snowboarding though. I feared how my significant other would do having to teach me a new skill. I can be {ahem} stubborn and whiny when learning something new.  I'm a frustrating perfectionist and give up very easily.  I wasn't quite sure how he would handle that side of me, in addition to our first trip away together.

Much to my surprise, we both did better than I thought.  He was so wonderfully patient with me on the slope and I tried extra hard so as not to waste his time.  He was very empathetic to my fears and patiently helped me maneuver my way down the mountain.

This trip was a major turning point in our relationship. Without having to say so, we were both all-in on the relationship.  Our commitment to each other became prevalent in our actions - especially our vulnerabilities.  After our trip, the door was open to try new things for both of us.  This has been the foundation for our relationship, a sturdy one at that. <3

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Fitness Log: 1/21/2014 Mini Circuit

This morning, I was short on time but still wanted to get a workout in.  Being short on time is no excuse to miss out some exercising.  So, I made my own mini circuit that was quick and effective.

I used 2 5-lb weights for the moves dumbbells. 

Do 3-5 times through

20 Jumping Jacks
20 Deadlifts 

It's not a killer workout, but it was better than laying around.  :)

Keep Moving!

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Fitness Log: 1/18/2014 - Self Magazine Workout Card Board

I've subscribed to Self Magazine for the past 10 years.  Roughly 90% of what I know about fitness, health and nutrition comes from this magazine.  One of my favorite aspects of the magazine are their pull out workout cards.  
Much to no one's surprise, I actually rip these out and keep them.  I go to my box of them for fitness inspiration and quick routines.  Don't get me wrong - Pinterest, FitSugar, Videos Online... they are all great.  However, sometimes I just want to unplug and simply workout.

I've hung a corkboard in our rec room where I can piece together a workout.  I like to start with cardio moves and mix in focuses on different body zones.  6-8 cards will do it.

Here is a close up of the workout I did this morning:

My abs and legs are already hurting and it has only been a few hours!  Give this sequence a try and let me know how it goes!
Keep Moving!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Do More of What Makes You Happy - Phone Background

Free Phone Background!  
Open this link on your phone, snag the image and enjoy!

Fitness Log: 1/17/2014 - Treadmill and Strength

I won't sugar coat it.  Today's workout was awful.  I've had a particularly stressful week, which has spilled over into poor sleep, diet and hydration.  All this came to a head when I hopped on the treadmill this evening.  Seven minutes into the run my hip started cramping up, which stressed my knee and my ankle.  I think it's important to acknowledge that I was able to run for seven minutes straight though.  I wouldn't have been able to say that a few weeks ago.  Unfortunately, the tension in my body forced me to give up on the treadmill earlier than I wanted to.  A little strength training only exacerbated the issue.  When I got home, I focused on 20 minutes of stretching and breathing to relieve tension throughout my body.  And there it was... I had been clenching my teeth.  Thinking back I realized I had been clenching my teeth through my run, my lifting, the stretching.  Recalling even further back, teeth clenching is probably what led to my neck cramps and poor sleep last night.  Ugh!  Stress is taking over my life.  As sad as I am that my stress has affected my body to this extent, I'm happy I focused on unraveling some of this mess.  Not a great workout - but a workout nonetheless.

Treadmill - 20 minutes @ 4-5mph

Biceps Curl - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs
Triceps Extension - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs
Seated Row - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 45lbs
Shoulder Press - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs
Chest Press - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs
Back Extension - 25 reps x 2 sets (no added weight)
Ab Crunch Bench - 5 reps x 5 sets (no added weight)

And I leave you for the day with my awkward gym selfie.  You're welcome.

Keep Moving!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Sassy Shoes

Some days, you just have to pull out your sassy shoes and strut your stuff.  I found these magenta, suede pumps at JC Penney about 3 years ago on super, super clearance.  Guess how much they were.  Seriously, guess!  Only $11.  Oh yes, only eleven American dollars.  They are only 2 1/2 inches high (perfect for 5'10" me) and wonderfully padded.  The magenta is the perfect pop of color without being overwhelming.  Plus, magenta works in every season!

Do you have your own sassy shoes?  Tell me about them!

Knitted Infinity Scarf

What I'm Wearing
Cardigan - Gap / White Tank Top - Banana Republic / Awesome Scarf - The Creative Cubby

I knitted this infinity scarf the other night and I'm still so obsessed with it.  I mean, really, I made it!

I can't bring myself to buy knitted scarves.  Knitting may seem intimidating, but once you get the general gist of the motions and proper tensions, it's one of the easiest crafts to pick up.  Plus, you can make unique, personalized fashion accessories for fall and winter.

Want to give it a try?  Check out my tutorial over at The Creative Cubby for this Knitted Infinity Scarf.

Ja'mie Private School Girl

I first read about the HBO show Ja'mie Private School Girl (pronounced juh-may) in Elle magazine.  I was intrigued by its catty comparison to Mean Girls.  Honestly, who wouldn't be?  That movie was hilarious.  I was also looking for new, interesting shows to watch.  So, what the heck?  Why not?

The show revolves around Ja'mie (Chris Lilley) and her friends who attend Hilford private school in Sydney, Australia.  Shot reality show style, the episodes are full of awkward camera angles and strange confessionals/narration.  Designed to satirize teenage girl life, the show deals with drama on a whole new level.  Frankly, I wasn't prepared for what I was about to experience.

Ja'mie is wealthy, foul-mouthed, vulgar... and completely unlikeable.  First, it's important to note if you don't know who comedian Chris Lilley is... he's a dude.  Yes, it's a grown man dressed as a teenage girl.  That fact alone takes some reconciling while watching.

Every problem s(he) has fits fully within the category "Rich White Girl Problems", like reinventing her image to get over a break-up.  S(he) decides to be a rebel by wearing a pile of bracelets, hoop earrings, knee-highs and hair extensions.  Ooo, so rebellious.

Like every mean girl, s(he) has her clan of minions - known as the Prefects.  They verbally assault nearly everyone who offends their senses and take it upon themselves to solve the world's problems (like people showing up to events uninvited).  Worse yet - s(he) pretends it's all altruistic.  Barf.

In addition to ridiculously overblown incidents, the dialogue includes some seriously offensive terms (read: racist) and foul language.  The "F" word is spoken every 10 words.

I watched three 30-minute episodes.  I'm surprised I made it through so many.  I would love to use the "track wreck" analogy, but it was worse than that.  Let's equate it to watching two dogs fight.  I know it's bad for everyone involved.  It was sad and painful to watch.  I had the power to stop it.  But I wanted to see how it would end up.

I will never get that hour and half back in my life and I so desperately want it.  Maybe Chris Lilley's humor isn't for me.  Maybe I don't understand why life is sooo haaard for an Australian Private School girl... who is also a man.  Whatever it may have been, my hope is this saves you from making the same mistake I did.

You're welcome.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Fitness Log: 1/15/2014 - Jillian Michaels' Top 5

Two days off and it almost ruined my fitness motivation.  So fragile!  "Almost" is the operative word.  Today, I tried Jillian Michaels' Top 5 Shape- Up Moves from  
 This exercise set gets two thumbs up.  It's quick, low impact and crazy hard.  Would you expect anything else from Jillian? 

Not too shockingly, I struggled with the Push-Up to an Unstable Plank.  Like, most women, my upper body just isn't strong enough.  Because I felt like I was awful at it, I did an extra set of push-ups and a 30-sec plank.  You know... just so Jillian wouldn't be disappointed in me.  :)

Give it a shot!
Keep Moving!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Fashion Find: Tusk Donington Wallet

 Rue La La has some truly amazing deals.  If you've never heard of Rue La La, that's a shame.  In my humble opinion, it is the best website to find stellar deals on fashion pieces - from shoes to luggage, from dresses to occasional housewares.  Previously, I showed you a watch that I found there.  Today, I share with you my beautiful Tusk Donington Wallet. 
 Originally $108, the wallet was offered for $34.90.  Lucky for me, I had a $30 shop credit from the "Shipping Catastrophe of 2013".  My watch shipment was delayed due to poor weather the weekend before Christmas.  To make amends, Rue La La offered me some free money.  Woot Woot!  Thank you, Mother Nature.
I've never owed a wallet that was REAL leather.  It has that glorious real leather smell.  I keep opening and closing it just so I can smell the amazingness.
I love that Rue La La makes quality affordable.  Now I have this pretty grown up wallet that I schlep everywhere with me. Maybe one day my wardrobe will match.  :)

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Fashion Log: 1/12/2014 - The Football Fan Treadmill Workout

I wasn't feeling very motivated to get to the gym today.  It's the NFL Playoffs and my boys, the one and only San Francisco 49ers, were taking on the Carolina Panthers.  Usually, I spend my time planted in front of the tv, gritting my teeth and saying silent prayers of success.  Unfortunately, I was very lazy this morning and didn't make it to the gym.  The guilt began to settle in halfway through the second quarter.  It was time to strap up the tennis shoes and make it happen.  Off to the fitness center!

During Halftime, I did my strength work.

Seated Row - 20 reps x 3 sets @ 45lbs
Seated Bicep Curls - 20 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs
Tricep Curls - 20 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs
Shoulder Press - 20 reps x 3 sets @ 15lbs
Chest Press - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs

Once the game was back on, it was go time!
The workout is simple.  When your team of choice has the ball, you run/jog.  When the other team has the ball, you walk at high speed (between 4.0 and 4.5). 

Not good enough for you - up the incline.  That should fix ya.

My 49ers had a particularly good day - so I ran a lot!  I actually found this to be a great interval for a new runner like me.  Instead of watching the time on the dash, I was watching the game (keeping my posture upright and my focus forward).  The 45 minute session FLEW by - plus I didn't have to miss the game! 

I feel amazing.  Exhausted, but amazing!  I don't know what I'll do after football season is over, but I'll have to figure something out.  :)

Keep Moving!

Fitness Log: 1/11/2014 - Treadmill and Strength

Oh. My. Word.  My body is still very sore from my Thursday workout.  However, I made it to the gym anyways.  Not a great workout, but it did warm up and loosen the muscles even further.

Treadmill -  20 minutes @ ave. 4.5 speed, 2% incline

Biceps Curl - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs
Triceps Extension - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 30lbs
Seated Row - 10 reps x 3 sets @ 45lbs

I finished my workout with 15 minutes of stretching at the barre in our studio.  I love using the barre for assisted stretching.  I was able to target my glutes and hamstrings by placing my shin on the barre (so my leg creates a "7" or "L" shape) and lunging my back leg.  It. Felt. So. Good.  Like, crazy good.
Not a good workout - but I'm happy I got my body moving around.  I would hate for soreness to demotivate me from exercising.  That doesn't make much sense, does it?

Keep Moving!

Fitness Log: 1/10/2014 - Neighborhood Walk

I woke up feeling extremely sore and tight... in my tush.  My body was finally feeling the full impact of my workout on Thursday morning.  Specially, the bridge.  My hamstrings and butt were sooo sore.

In the morning, I focused on stretching.  After 30 minutes, I felt a little looser but still there was a deep tightness.  Apparently my butt needed that workout.

By the end of the work day, I was struggling.  Sitting in an desk chair is not synonymous with keeping my muscles warm.  I was walking around like I had ridden a bull.  Haha!  Awesome.

Thankfully, a good friend who lives in my neighborhood agreed to go for an evening walk.  I love going for walks with friends.  It's a win-win.  You get in some gab time as well as a low impact workout.  We walked 2 miles in roughly 37 minutes, which means we had a pretty decent pace.  There were times when I felt a little winded talking and walking at the same time - how did that happen?

Regardless, I'm heading to bed still very sore.  I really need to power through it.  We'll see how tomorrow goes.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Preppy Friday

It's Friday and I simply can't bring myself to get too casual in the office.  After a really hard week, all I wanted to do was strap on my Converse shoes and a hoodie.  Instead, I opted for preppy casual and comfy.
What I'm Wearing:
Sweater and Bracelets - Brooks Brothers

I have second day, lazy hair going on today.  My only saving grace is the wave twist on the front.  I don't know where I learned this or why I started doing it, but I've found that it really works for my face shape.
Essentially, I just grab the front portion of my hair and pull it back as if I was going to pin it back.  Then, I twist in one direction, allowing the center of the twist to follow to one side.  When it is twisted to my satisfaction, I hold the end of the twist flat against the top of my head and push it a smidge forward - just to give it a little lift.  No Snooki bumps here.  Use bobby pins to secure.
  I pulled the rest of my hair into a ponytail - and ta-da!  I somewhat look put together.  Fridays are all about finishing the week out strong, right?  Ha - sure.  
Here's hoping my preppy outfit gives me the pep in my step to make it through the rest of the week!  (Just a few more hours!)

Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Simpsons - Best. Lego. Set. Ever.

I make no effort in my daily life to hide that I am a Simpsons fan.  I was a born a Simpsons fan.  I will die a Simpsons fan.  Daily, I play The Simpsons Tapped Out on my iPhone (friend me! jeneevans109).  I'm not a creepy fan - I just like what I like.  I like ridiculously sarcastic cultural humor.  The Simpsooooooons.

So!  You can imagine my sheer bliss then when I heard that Lego was releasing a Simpsons Lego set.  I literally squealed with excitement.  Yesterday, Gizmodo released the Official Photos of the Lego Simpsons House.  I about died!

What an amazing set to bring joy to your household!!!  Yes, I am a grown ass adult and I will be buying this set.  Don't judge me.  This is 25 years in the making and I will indulge.

Are you excited for The Simpsons set?

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