It’s Okay To Take Rest Day: 6 Ways to Know When It’s Time to Give Yourself a Break

21 Aug

We all need days off– to let our muscles recover and repair and to mentally give ourselves a break from the routine. Most people schedule their rest days into their week. But, how do you know if you need one?

1)      You feel the “twinge” that something isn’t right: I mentioned yesterday that on Sunday when I was working out my lower back started not feeling right. I continued my workout as low impact but high intensity as possible, and when I didn’t see much positive progress with it yesterday I made it a rest day. It’s okay to switch around when your rest day is based on when your body is asking for it.

2)      You’re lethargic or you have trouble sleeping: Sometimes, becoming overly lethargic throughout the day or not being able to sleep soundly at night is an indicator of over training.

3)      You absolutely dread working out: Now, there’s a difference between the usual “ugh I don’t want to get out of bed and go running this morning!” and the absolute dread associated with exercise burn out. Make sure you’re sure that it’s the later before you give yourself a rest day—and don’t let it turn into a regular excuse.

4)      Progress has slowed significantly: This may seem counter intuitive but sometimes if your progress has slowed or come to a halt it might be that your body needs a rest.

5)      You’re sick: If you’re suffering from a terrible cold or other illness, it’s okay to give yourself some time off to heal. Just make sure that as soon as you’re feeling better you get back into it!

6)      You’re becoming obsessed: Remember it’s about balance. If you are overdoing it and exercising is all you can think about, it might be time to give yourself a break and reconnect with your friends, families, and other hobbies or interests you may have neglected.

This all comes down to listening to your body! And, as always, don’t be afraid to talk to your doctor about any concerns you may have. Remember, just because you took one day off doesn’t mean you’re going to fall off the wagon completely. Rest days should be a part of your regular exercise routine. You can also do active recovery on those days, like light walking, stretching, or yoga.

How often do you take rest days? 

Accountable Monday: Weigh-in Results & TurboFire Month 2 Beginnings

20 Aug

Good Morning! Monday is weigh-in day around here, and today I saw 155.

That’s one pound down since last week and 7 overall since the start of TurboFire. I’m quite pleased.

Month 2 of TurboFire has been off with a bang. The workouts are longer than last month’s on a whole, and there are none of the HIIT workouts on the horizon. My endurance is building but I’m still struggling through the longer workouts. I did something funny last night, apparently, and my left lower back is not so happy today. I’m going to have to take it a little easier until that goes away but I’m going to make sure I’m still getting my heart rate up.

English: SAN DIEGO (Sept. 3, 2009) Fred Fusili...

 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Additionally, my lovely SO who certainly has nothing but the best of intentions gave me a “tip” today after I stepped off the scale that my weight loss results would be better if I didn’t eat so much crap. True, yes, but my diet has significantly improved and I’m trying to make this a lifestyle change. I know that if I cut out everything I’m craving it will not be sustainable. I’m cutting down on those indulgences not eliminating them completely.

Maybe I won’t lose weight as quickly as I would if I were eliminating anything remotely unhealthy from my diet. But, I’m proud of the progress I’m making and am looking forward to finding ways to still enjoy life but be more mindful and healthy as I do so.

Sunday Cooking & Looking For A Lunch Tote

19 Aug

Sunday’s my cooking day. I try to make something extra yummy for dinner (aka something that takes a little longer to cook) as well as get my meals planned for the week ahead. This includes a lot of the prep work and as much cooking for that as possible!

But one thing I’ve been struggling with is selecting transportable options. I take the subway to work so it has to be portable and able to survive 45 minutes of possibly being squished between many human beings rushing to work. (They aren’t joking when they call it the rush hour!) And, I’m ashamed to say, I mostly take what I can fit in my purse.

It’s about time I invest in a lunch bag. They always made me think of elementary school but it’s about time that I suck it up for practicality’s sake. The one’s I’ve liked so far cost more than I’d like to spend and ideally, I want one with a long enough strap to throw over my shoulder. This isn’t necessarily a deal breaker though.

Does anyone have one that they like and that they’d recommend?

Thermos Raya Lunch Tote: Picture from Amazon.com

And what am I cooking today? Currently, I’ve got a healthier version of Buffalo Chicken Dip in the Crock Pot (from SkinnyTaste, I’ve made it before and it’s a total winner!).  I’m also planning on doing some baking and maybe a couscous dish. The extra Buffalo Chicken Dip will make some great lettuce (or regular) wraps this week!

Lifestyle Change: Taking Care of Myself Overall/Essie Marathin

18 Aug

I’m currently sporting a pretty pink Essie nail polish color called “Marathin”* which previously would have been totally out of character for me. Coincidentally (or not) it’s from Essie’s new fall 2012 “Yogaga” collection. I have no idea why they have a Yoga themed nail polish collection. The collection includes names like Spinning Again, Pilates Hottie, and Gym Dandy. Most of the colors are pretty soft and muted, but I’m telling you, this pink is out of my comfort zone. My fingers are screaming, look at me! (At least in my mind.) Which is the complete opposite of what I’m usually trying to do—which is hide.

Ever since I’ve been taking better care of myself—eating healthier, drinking more water, exercising regularly (you know the drill), I’ve been doing lots of other little things that I had let go by the wayside.

Marathin from Essie’s Fall 2012 Yogaga Nail polish Collection

I never really wore much makeup; but now, I’m taking 2 minutes in the morning to look in the mirror. I’ve gotten manicures and stopped biting my nails. I’ve worn headbands more than once.  It’s not that I’m becoming consumed with my appearance. I’m just making myself a priority again. I’m letting myself feel beautiful and confident.

For so long, I just wanted to blend into the background so no one would look at me. And for me, that was a way to be less accountable. If I hid behind my “lazy” I didn’t have to face reality—I felt like I could just “disappear” and all would be okay.

Most importantly, I’m learning/accepting that it is okay to feel beautiful and comfortable in my own skin.

*Disclaimer: I don’t want to be thin, I want to be healthy and fit.  I wish they named it Marafit!

Are your nails painted? If so, what color are you currently wearing?

That’s it! Thursdays: Sometimes It’s Okay To Say No

16 Aug

Earlier this week I was complaining about feeling like I was spreading myself too thin. So, for this week’s That’s it! Thursday, I’m vowing to say “no” to the things I don’t really want to do/don’t have the capacity to do.

English: Hot air balloon back-lit by early sun...

English: Hot air balloon back-lit by early sunrise during SkyFest 2010 in Cedar City, Utah (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As a people pleaser, it’s easy to say yes, yes, yes, when people you care about ask you for favors or ask you to do things. But sometimes, it’s okay to say no. It’s okay to say you can’t make it that BBQ or that you can’t take on that extra project right now based on your workload.

I have to be honest with myself. Because sometimes, it’s okay to say no.

Never Been So Happy To Schedule A Doctor’s Appointment!

15 Aug

I’ve posted before about the following: 1) I hate going to the doctor 2) I have a doctor I really like that I found through ZocDoc. So, you can imagine my distress when I went to schedule my regular appointment with my doctor to see his page had disappeared all together from ZocDoc!

I, being the worrywart (with a flair for jumping to the worst-possible conclusion) decided he must have left the practice or even the left the City and I’d have to start from scratching finding a new doctor. I was immediately worried I’d get a doctor that’d make me take insulin and pills to lose weight, disregard all my wishes, and make me cry regularly. (Yes, I cry at the doctors. I can be such a baby– I’m so sensitive!)

Figuring I’d call the office first thing in the morning just to be sure– I nearly jumped out of my seat when his page was back the next morning! Phew!

Image representing Zoc Doc as depicted in Crun...

ZocDoc Website (Image via CrunchBase)

So, I’ve got my next visit scheduled: September 27th at 8am. I’m hoping to lose a few more pounds by then and that my blood pressure and lab work all come back showing significant improvements.

It’s now been two years since I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. My health is still improving, but I know I’ve made vast strides since then. In the next few days I’ll be posting about my last two years living with Diabetes so be on the lookout for that.

When’s your next Doctor’s appointment? Do you have any goals you want to reach before then?

Spreading Myself Too Thin

14 Aug

Warning: this post is kind of whiny–

But, If I’m being brutally honest (and there’s no reason not to be here, right?) I’ve been exhausted lately.  I think I’m spreading myself too thin and I feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day to do all that I want to do.

Try as I might, I can’t add more hours. So, I’ve got to do something about this. I can’t keep going the way I am or I know I’m going to burn out. And, importantly, I’m not letting my working out go to the wayside. Something else has to budge instead because getting healthier is way too important, not only right now, but for the rest of my life. I have to move that up on the priorities list and decide what is a bit lower down that I can cut out.

Nevada shore of Lake Tahoe around the barge li...

Nevada shore of Lake Tahoe around the barge line and terminus of the flume (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sometimes I think I can do everything. But, I’m tired. I can’t. Something’s got to give.

Sorry for the lack of positivity in my post today, but I’m hoping that the honesty makes up for it?

Accountable Monday: TurboFire Month 1 Results & Weigh-in

13 Aug

Yesterday, I posted about my thoughts of the first month of TurboFire. Notably, however, I left out my weight loss results– which I’m sure many of you were eager to see. I know I was.

I started TurboFire on  at 162 pounds on July 15th, 2012.

As of today, August 13th, 2012, I weight 156 pounds.

That’s six pounds down!  

Of course, it’s not as much as I would have liked. (Got to love those unrealistic expectations and lofty goals!) But, I know I’m well on my way and moving in the right direction. I’m building muscle, getting stronger, and I’m sure I’m loosing inches along the way. Measurements in a couple of weeks will tell me for sure.

My goal was 15 pounds by the end of TurboFire on November 4th– that’d make me 147…. 9 to go! That feels do-able. I like breaking it down it more bite-sized goals like that.

Did you weigh in this week? How were your results? What are you going to do this week to make it even better?

TurboFire Month 1 in Review

12 Aug

I just finished my first month of Turbo Fire and I’m incredibly proud of myself for getting into the routine and pushing beyond my comfort zone. I thought now would be a good time to reflect on the first month of the program and my thoughts and results so far.

I haven’t done the program absolutely perfectly (switched some days around, etc.) but have completed each of the sessions prescribed for the last month within the month time frame. I’ve been conscious of my food intake, though not perfect. I’ve also significantly increased my water intake which I’m happy about but still working on.

Beachbody

Beachbody (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Impressions:

  • Changing it up: I love how the workouts change regularly and you’re never doing the same thing two days in a row. This was a problem I had had with other programs like 30 Day Shred. I haven’t gotten bored with the routines yet because they’re challenging (keeps me on my toes physically and in terms of the choreography) and all different.
  • Increasing Intensity: I’m also really liking that there are always way to improve on the same workout as you get stronger: jumping higher, push harder, etc.  The level of intensity you bring to the workout really changes things so the workouts can increase in difficulty as your fitness level increases as well– so they’ll keep being challenging!
  • Sculpt & Tone: So far it seems like she’s throwing in one sculpt/tone strength building class a week. I almost wish they were more frequent as I really enjoy them and feel the burn from them. I’m loving the resistance bands and again– they provide a way to keep the workouts challenging as you can always increase your resistance level for the workouts.
  • Stretch: I don’t love the stretch portions. For the days that the Stretch 10 or Stretch 40 aren’t scheduled, it does’t seem like the workouts on their own provide enough before/after stretching. I’ve been doing more on my own in order to prevent any possible injury. The Stretch 10 is okay, but I get bored of it quickly. Stretch 40 I have a lot of trouble getting through so I’ve been doing a lot more stretching on my own. I’m familiar with a lot of stretches due to all the sports I played growing up, so I guess I think I have down a routine that works well for me.
  • Cast & Production: I don’t really love the cast– primarily you only see the three on stage and I wish it was reversed so you could see the rest of the group like in some of the other TurboJam videos. Sometimes I don’t know what I’m supposed to be doing because they’re zoomed in on Chalene. Chalene is tolerable– but I don’t seem to love her as much as some people do.

Results: 

  • Clothes are fitting better: My stomach is definitely flatter and that’s always been my biggest trouble spot.
  • I’m getting stronger: I swear to you I surprised myself at work the other day when I realized how strong my triceps were getting! My muscles are responding– I even got a compliment on how muscular my calves are the other day.
  • My endurance is growing: I still have trouble with the longer workouts, but I’m getting there. I can see the progress and I know I’ll only get better if I keep pushing myself regularly. I still prefer the HIIT workouts though!
  • Weight/Inches lost: I weigh in tomorrow so we’ll see what the number looks like then and inches in a couple weeks, but I am pleased with the progress I’m making so far and am excited to see where it will go from here.

Bring it on Month Two!

Diabetic vs. Living with Diabetes

11 Aug

You might have noticed that I often refer to myself as a person with diabetes, or living with diabetes. But, I’ve never once referred to myself as a diabetic. Sure, by definition, I am. But– that’s not what I identify as.

It might seem like a subtle difference and just a difference in nomenclature; however, it’s a significant one.

In college, one of my majors was in Psychology. I remember in my Abnormal Psychology class they addressed the importance of this difference with regards to mental illnesses. It should be a person who suffers from schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, not a schizophrenic. A person is so much more than their illness– whether mental or physical.

By saying that I am diabetic, it makes it sound like that is all of my being. It is a part of me and my life, yes, but there is so much more to me than that. I am also a daughter, sister, friend, coworker, reader, blue-eyed, and freckled. Get the idea?

It’s amazing the implications of such small differences in the way we say things. I’m working on being much more conscious of things like this… in how I think about myself and how I think about others.