Certified Personal Trainer – Renewed

Two years ago, after I had already lost 70 pounds and was beginning to take fitness and working out more serious, I became a Certified Personal Trainer.

I didn’t have a plan to do anything with the certification, but it provided me with knowledge and gave me a lot more confidence in what I was doing and how I was attempting to get more fit.

Renewal time came up and I did not intend on renewing my certification, but during the stay at home orders and with the gyms closed I’ve been working out a lot harder at home and lifting more weights. I started to fall in love with working out again.

I’m Official!

I renewed my certification. I believe when the gyms open back up, I may apply for a part-time trainer position. Looking forward to it.

The Streak is Over

With the recent pandemic came the shut down and cancelation of most public gatherings and events. Although not super important in the wide scope of everything that is going on, to me organized 5K charity races had become a huge part of my fitness journey and an accomplishment I was very proud of.

I participated in a 5K every month since I started my journey in January 2017 until the last one in March 2020. That was 39 5Ks in 39 months. WOW.

I walked and huffed and puffed though that first one, while weighing 200+ pounds. Each month I walked a little faster and my legs and ankles hurt a little less. Eventually I began to jog a little, that turned into a run/walk combo with my finish time getting a bit faster each time. As my fitness level increased and I could complete the event without feeling so completely drained and sore, I was realizing that I actually COULD do it, so I began to push myself.

By August 2019 I was able to run the entire 3.1 miles without stopping. I never thought I would be able to do that. In fact, that was not a goal at all. I enjoyed getting some exercise outdoors and attending a fun celebration event afterward.

Since all organized events across the country were canceled and the gyms even shut down, I didn’t want to lose my momentum so I got out and ran in my neighborhood. Now I’m running a 5K on a weekly basis.

I have been able to keep up my fitness regimen and not just give up by turning to food, even in these bizarre and difficult times we are all facing. This is reassurance to me that I am a different person than I was 70 pounds ago and I prefer the healthier version of myself.

Smarter at Home

I have been working remotely since March 16th and my local gym shut down that same day. Being the creature of routine that I am, I felt quite a bit of anxiety at the very beginning of all this.

  • Now what am I going to do?
  • Now I can’t workout.
  • Now I can’t eat properly since the grocery stores are impossible to navigate.
  • Now I’m doomed.

Fortunately, that didn’t last long. I was able to actually focus on my nutrition and fitness more than ever before. I’ve been able to become more active in the social media groups that I belong to and even find some new influencers to follow.

My workout routine has really changed during this time of social distancing and I needed that!! I had fallen into a major rut at the gym, doing the same things every day. I’ve begun to focus more on strength training as I do have a small home gym with kettlebells and dumbbells varying in weight from 2-25lbs, strength bands, a weight bench, a stability ball, a Fit Board and a mini trampoline. It was time to dust off all my equipment and use it the way I always wanted to.

I did many work-outs from online sources, such as Planet Fitness, Erica Lugo’s Fit Love Squad, Jillian Michaels DVDs and YouTube.

The weather here in Southern California has been beautiful, on most days I was able to get outside first thing in the morning for a run or a walk, then come home to complete my workout with some strength training all without the time restraints of having to get ready for work.

Now I wonder what I’ll do when our local gym re-opens. Do I really need to go 6 days a week like I’ve done for 3+ years?

I received word from the school district that I work for that we will be working in the office most days in June, probably 4 days a week, then back to regular schedule in July.

Now I’m a bit anxious about how that will affect my new routine. I’ve fallen in love with exercise again and I like having that as my major focus. I guess it’s time to adjust again. Which I’m trying to be excited about.

(shhh… I don’t really want to go back to work!)

Weight maintenance remains my main goal and focus and during these 11 or 12 weeks of State “Safer-at-Home” orders my scale has not moved, but I feel better than ever and I know I became must “Smarter-at-Home.”

Twelve 5Ks in 12-months!

Not bad for someone who started 2017 over 60 pounds heavier and could hardly walk without getting winded. I’m not saying I ran all 12 of the 5Ks this year, not even close, it was only the last two that I did more running than walking.

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My goal for 2018 is to run an entire 5K (with no walking), and then maybe just maybe, attempt a 10K. I doubt I’ll ever go for any longer distances, but it is a great workout and it’s nice to get out of the gym once in a while and get some fresh air.

I have quite a nice collection of T-shirts and medals from 2017, some are super cute 🙂

Changing Plans

Well I did it, I survived my summer vacation. It is amazing how fast 4 weeks goes when you are on vacation. There was no big trip this year, so all the fun was kept local. I was worried about staying on my plan while being at home most of time and outside of my normal routine. I’m so proud of myself, I did great. If fact, I lost an additional 5 pounds while I was off work.

Not only did I on stay on plan, I also had some time to reflect. Although I love Weight Watchers and would recommend their program to anyone starting out on their weight loss journey, I began to think that perhaps I’ve outgrown Weight Watchers. Their Smart Points program is simple, fun and there is lots of support within the online Connect community, but I think I’m ready for more. I want to be more aware of what I’m actually eating, as in protein, fat, carbs, sugar, etc.

Last week I began transitioning from Weight Watchers to My Fitness Pal. The food tracker is very similar to WW, except that you get the details of how many calories you are eating and how many grams of Generation yprotein, carbs, fat and sugar. The mobile app is user friendly and My FitBit workouts are transferred to My Fitness Pal which creates a calorie adjustment.  It’s only been about a week, but so far I like this program, and it’s FREE 🙂

Summer is Here!

My summer vacation is finally here. I am an 11 month employee and that last month of work is always the hardest to get through, but I got through it, and now I’m off! I always plan to do all my chores and errands during the first week or two that I’m on vacation, so that I can have a good solid two weeks OFF doing nothing.free_15451417

Let’s see, what should I do with myself this summer while I’m off? Definitely the usual, shampoo my carpet, spend time with my mom, a trip to the outlet mall with my daughter, a beach weekend with my husband, and that’s about it! I’ll still have plenty of homework from my summer classes (I’m a full-time student, too), but the remainder of the time off will be spent just chilling out.

I am a bit concerned about how I will stay on my plan. I do very well with routines and consistency. I’ve managed to incorporate meal planning and prepping and daily workouts into my very busy work/school schedule. I want to keep it all up and I’m just worried that too much down-time will result in snacking and overeating or laziness.

My new healthy lifestyle has been pretty easy and even fun, but the next 4 weeks will be my first true test without a set schedule to follow, can I stay on plan? I think so, I’m confident that I have the correct mindset and can maintain on my plan during my 4 weeks of vacation. Wish me luck!

When Something “clicks”

Everyone has had the moment, that moment when something just “clicks” and you know it’s time. Time for what? Well that’s different for everyone. Maybe it’s the moment you realize it’s time to find a new job or end a bad relationship or go back to school or lose weight.

The moment for me began this past Thanksgiving 2016 when my sister-in-law posted a very unflattering picture of me on Facebook and tagged me! I was horrified. And sad. Had I really gotten that fat? Then, in early December, I needed to attend an evening event and not one pair of long pants fit me. I had to purchase a size 16, I cried. I hated those pants and the tag inside that read 16. By the time my birthday came around in later December, something finally clicked in my brain and I decided, “starting right now, I’m done with this crap!” Who’s in control of my life anyway? Me. I took responsibility on December 18, 2016 and now I take care of me and my body first, before everything else.

The timing couldn’t have been worse, it was just before Christmas, but I didn’t care. Taking control of my life and my health were more important to me than cheddar potatoes, or glazed ham, or the endless spread of Christmas cookies and treats. Come to find out it really wasn’t that hard to get through the holiday events, because something was different in my head this time. I didn’t want to put an excess of bad stuff in this body that I was trying to change. (Well, I did eat one tamale that my goddaughter made for her first time, and it was worth it.)

Even after about 6 months, I really don’t find it difficult to stay on track. I’m continuing to use the Weight Watchers method of counting points and really can eat whatever I want (if I have the points for it), but on most days I don’t want anything unhealthy. I’m trying to teach myself a new healthier way of eating and living, I’m not trying to quickly fix a weight problem, that part is coming along on its own naturally.

When that moment comes for you, and you will know when it does, listen to it.

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I can’t believe I’m posting this. Thanksgiving 2016

Take a Hike!

Who knew there was an inner hiker in me that wanted to get out? Definitely not me. I’ve never been the “outdoorsy” type, I’m more of the indoor, air-conditioning type and even for a work out I prefer the controlled temp and conditions of a commercial gym.

After my husband and I completed a few 5Ks this year, we both realized we needed to take our weekend workouts up a notch, nothing too crazy but we wanted to challenge ourselves a little more. Someone suggested a local hike. I’ve heard about this hike before, everyone has done it so it’s probably not that bad, so we decided to give it a try.

Arriving at the base of the hike a 5:30am we were quite surprised to see the amount of people there. There are 2 different paths to take, go to the left and around the mountain is supposed to be a little easier and the suggested path for beginners.  Most people were going to the left. But we’ve been working about for 5 months and lost 70+ pounds between us, surely we could take the more difficult path and go to the right. Having never been on a hike before, I did not know what to expect on this 5 mile trek, I figured it would be like a walk only in the wilderness instead of the street or treadmill.

Mile 1 was pretty steep, I was surprised how steep in fact. It was dirt and loose gravel which was a challenge in a couple of places, you have to watch where you step to avoid tripping. I was breathing pretty hard during this first mile, by Mile 2 I could not catch my breath or breathe normally. This second mile seemed like it went on forever, it was so steep with very little leveling out. There were plenty of places to stop along the way, even some benches, or you can just stop to take in the view (which was beautiful), but I couldn’t stop.  I did not want to lose my momentum. I just kept going. The summit is around two and half miles up, there’s a gazebo to rest or take scenic photos. One quick selfie for us and we were back our way. The remainder of the way was more level and down-hill, I even ran in some spots.

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Claremont Loop

It took me about an hour and half to complete. I was exhausted, my legs were dead, I was drenched in sweat, and starving. But all I could think about was next weekend and doing it again!

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Our first hike 5/28/17

Celebrating Goals

A piece of advice I was given early on was to reward yourself for the small victories. All along the way I’ve rewarded myself with non-food related items as I reach each goal of losing 15 pounds, 20 pounds, 25, 30, etc.  I’ve given myself things like a manicure or new pair of work out pants or sneakers. At 30 pounds I celebrated by going to a local hot springs spa for the day.

This week I hit my first major goal … 40 pounds released forever!

I’ve already scheduled my reward of a facial for Friday.

I can’t believe I lost 40 pounds already, time to set a new goal … 10 more!

Meal Prep’n

I’ve come to love meal prepping! I look forward to Sundays when I spend some therapeutic time preparing lunches for the week for both me and my husband.

Each week, we will both have a huge salad, plus a smaller side lunch. We vary it from week to week, from chicken burritos to a meatball with veggies or as I made this week (my favorite) BBQ shredded chicken with roasted veggies.

   

Yes this amount of prep does take some time, but oh the time it saves during the work week! It’s such a relief to know I have a healthy (WW point friendly) meal for lunch everyday.

I also “plan” out my dinners for each night of the week, however I rarely prepare them in advance. I have plenty of time to cook, since I get home before my husband.

This method of planning and prepping has been key to my weight loss journey so far. I’m able to plan out my meal (and SmartPoints) for the week and this has helped me stay on track. I’ll even plan days ahead if we’re planning to attend a Dodger Game or Concert or a family event.