Wearing the Monday Blues & How I Don’t Die of Boredom on the Stairmaster

The Monday blues were in full effect yesterday. I rocked my new thermal Duke blue scarf yesterday, along with dark wash jeans, and my blue TOMs. I refuse to admit that the cold weather is here and am wearing these until snow becomes the norm.

wearing-the-blues

Yesterday’s snack –> 4 oz of turkey, 1 perfectly-cooked hard-boiled egg, and 2 oz sweet potatoes.

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Yesterday was a rest day for me, so I tried to keep as busy as possible, which meant window shopping at Target. Found this clutch. TOMs just launched their new line with Target on Sunday – thanks Jen! – and I want this so badly. Not for going out-out, but I can picture myself going to Starbucks on a cold afternoon, and storing essentials in this. Future me is so cute! Mom — Christmas list! I believe it’s $12 or $15, which I consider a steal.TOMs-clutch-Target

Last week I had written a post that touched upon the fact that I survived 23 minutes on the Stairmaster, and lived to tell the tale. Some of you were saying how it terrifies you, that you get so bored, etc etc. I have really enjoyed going to the gym after work and getting on the stair master for 20ish minutes or so.

Stairmaster-Ecard

Chris, of I Failed Fran, had asked why I wanted to do double workouts if I had done CrossFit in the morning. Well, CrossFit didn’t really leave me exhausted, and since I had sat at my desk for 9 hours after CrossFit, I really wanted to move around. I knew that if I went straight home after work, I would just be sitting again on the couch for a few hours.

Instead, I’ve found that getting on the stairs allows me to be active. It’s low impact, so it isn’t as taxing as if I wanted to go for a run after work. Plus, it gives you a lot of bang for your buck! Cardio, toning, and working your core, calves, hamstrings and glutes. I can go for that!

So yes, some days the Stairmaster is going to be boring, but I’ve found a handful of ways that I stay entertained on it, while also having the time fly by.

1) If you go after work, ALL of the men are there, and because you are high up and looking over the weights like the Queen of the Gym, you literally HAVE to look at all of the men and their amazing arms. Or if you’re a guy, you get to drool over all of the ladies and their firm buns of steel. If that’s not motivation for getting on those damn stairs, I don’t know what is!

2) Talk to someone. Bring a friend. It’s easy! If you go to the gym on your lunch, encourage the Stairmaster to your coworker to try with you. You can chat about that hottie in accounting, or vent about your work day. Time flies by. I will sometimes just have a text convo going, and as long as I’m on the recovering part of my HIIT workout, I will respond.

3) Watch TV —- Bring an iPad, or watch the TV at the gym. Most machines allow you to plug your headphones in, so watching a show will make it go by quicker!

4) This is sick that it’s my favorite way, okay I lied, #1 was my favorite reason, but this is #2. HIIT on the stairs. Yes it sucks, but it makes you feel badass, AND gets the workout done quicker. I will warm up for a few minutes on the stairs, and then start a HIIT workout. I will typically increase the speed from a 6 to a 12 and go at 12 for 30 seconds. I recover for a minute, and then begin at 12 again. The sprints actually go by quicker, and I find myself wanting the next sprint to start. I typically do this until I hit the 20 minute mark, and then cool down for a few more minutes at an ultra slow speed.

If I have time for only 10 minutes on the Stairmaster, I like doing a 3 minute warm-up, followed by HIIT >> 30 seconds fast, and this time a 45 second recovery >> so I typically end up doing the HIIT for only 4 minutes, but because the recovery is a bit less, it feels like a harder workout! Always include the cool down as well!

I want to try this stair master workout next!

What are your exact thoughts about the Stairmaster? Yay or nay?

Cable’s Back = Geeking Out

We finally have our cable back which means I can blog again from my computer! So happy I’m geeking out! 🙂

Let’s get to this afternoon’s eats.

Lunch:

For lunch I enjoyed Sara Lee Low Sodium Turkey roll-ups with cherry tomatoes. I wanted something light and filling since I was skipping my lunch to leave work an hour early.

An hour later I sprinkled a little bit of PB2 on the sweet potato slices for a sweet afternoon snack.

I might have celebrated Halloween a day early with a Cookies & Cream Hershey’s fun-size bar.

Okay, so we really had the fun-sized candy in the marketing department for a trade show tomorrow, but we’ll just go with the Halloween idea. 😉

Todays outfit:

Plaid Button-Down: J.Crew

Black Jeggings: American Eagle

Cheetah Flats: Bandolino (DSW)

Purse: Steve Madden

After leaving work an hour early, I went for a 1-mile warm up run and followed it with the P90X Pylometrics workout.

I was a freakin’ beast! I literally rung sweat from that mofo. My legs were extremely tight, especially after running outside all weekend, so I plopped myself into a much-needed ice bath.

My little legs are so sore and my eyes are getting heavy. Time to chip away at Gone Girl. It was due today and I’m not allowed to renew it since there’s a long wait for it so I’m trying to read it quickly. Stinkin’ late fees are no fun!

Holy Schnikes

You know what’s good? Life. That’s what’s good.

I was a Class A rebel last night by staying up a good 2 hours past my normal bedtime. I might have hit snooze one too many times this morning, and had a more difficult run, but it was worth it.

Morning Workout

  • 3.7 mile run
  • Ab Ripper X Workout
  • 100’s Ab
  • Stretching

Another sweaty workout that has left my body feeling like a rock star.

A rock star in cheetah-print flats, that’s what!

Today’s Outfit:

  • Fuchsia Shrug Top: Express
  • Skinny Belt: American Eagle
  • Khakis: American Eagle
  • Cheetah Flats: Bandolino (DSW)
  • Black & Gold Bracelet: J.Crew
  • Earrings: Hunk

This morning while I was waiting for my computer to start-up, I was flipping through the October edition of Runner’s World Magazine, and came across a tip on how to fix impatience.

If you read last night’s post, you’ll remember that I only lasted 25 of the 90 minute P90X yoga workout. I immediately decided to cross that workout off the list, but after reading the advice in Runner’s World, I changed my thinking and didn’t want to give up that easily.

“THE FIX: SET MINI GOALS Newbies tend to get discouraged by their “slow” progress (remember?). Have your friend focus on increasing the time spent running each week. At first, this may be just a minute or two, but these increments will grow. There’s nothing quite as empowering as being able to run longer and farther.”

While this advice is geared specifically towards runners, it can easily be translated to any aspect of your life, whether it revolves around working out or not. How am I going to incorporate this into my yoga workouts? Easy. I’ll gradually work my way up to the 90 minutes. So I did 25 minutes this week? Okay, next week I’ll aim for longer, whether it is an additional 10 or 20 minutes, all depending on how I feel.

Change, change, change. My body is changing, my mood is changing, and my breakfast is changing. Well, kind of. Don’t be fooled, I’m still going with the Mango Overnight Oats, but this morning instead of the typical raspberries on top, I went for the fresh blackberries that were in the fridge.

While it was a nice change, I still prefer the raspberries. The blackberries didn’t produce enough of a flavor punch for my liking. In the future, I think placing the blackberries on the oats the night before would be better, as I’m thinking the juices from the blackberries would settle into the oats more. That or frozen blackberries. Add that to my shopping list for this weekend.

Speaking of change, my man Obama is the next street over giving a speech in the park. I don’t talk politics. I know who I want to lead us, so I really could care less about the debates and so forth. As much as it should interest me, I have no say in what decisions are made once a new President is elected. I can only cast my vote and hope for the best. Seriously though, how am I supposed to focus and get work done when Obama is in my hood?!

Afternoon Workout

  •  1.5 mile run
  • 10 minutes elliptical
  • 10 minutes additional cardio

Lunch

What’s that you smell for lunch? CHANGE. Again, holy schnikes Lewis. In an attempt to not eat the same exact meals every day, I spiced it up today with Gorton’s Grilled Tilapia on a bed of broccoli and brown rice.

This meal was delicious! With 15 grams of protein and 2 grams each of carbs and fat in the tilapia, this was a great post-workout meal.

Tonight I have a hot date with my best friend, Allie, where we’ll be cooking dinner together and catching up. She just got back Monday from her Orlando vacation, so I’ve been missing her quite tremendously. I’m excited to hear all about her time under the sun!

Feeling Fresh to Death

Last night I took it easy in hopes of kicking my Fall cold, so I threw on my 3 sizes too big sweatpants, my ratty college sweatshirt, and plopped myself down on my big leather couch and watched the first episode of 666 Park Avenue. Holy mother of everything, that show was creepy and intense. I’m not a big fan of watching TV, but I’m officially HOOKED!

I called it an early night and read a little of my October issue of Shape Magazine. Did you know that if you eat one handful of candy corn (20 pieces, 150 calories), you would have to walk for 37 minutes to burn off that small handful? Since candy corn is a candy that I can only enjoy a few of before getting sick to my stomach, I think that small fact is enough to keep me away from the candy. Sorry candy corn, you’re not worth it. However, the candy corn flavored Hershey kisses would get me walking miles to inhale those tasty candies.

I woke up feeling refreshed and back to my normal self, and was ready to tackle my run. My legs weren’t on the same page. 2 back to back days of HIIT running took its toll on my midget legs and I have to admit, that had to have been the most painful 3 miles I’ve run in a long time. Usually when I have a rough start to my run, I kick that feeling by the end of the first mile and find my groove. Unfortunately, it took a little more than 2 mile to get there.

My arms have been sore from a lot of the upper body work I’ve incorporated into my regime this week. I’m thinking the increase in push-ups could be the culprit. I love the feeling of muscle pain, and didn’t let the burn stop these arms from doing their thing.

Morning Workout

  • 3 miserable miles
  • 3 sets of 15 stair push-ups
  • 1 minute plank hold
  • 2 sets of 20 rock climbers
  • 50 crunches & 50 side-to-side crunches
  • 2 sets of 13 skiing dumbbell squats
  • 2 sets of 13 standing dumbbell side crunches
  • Stretching

It’s another rainy day here in New Hampshire, and why not make my day even colder by enjoying a bowl of  Raspberry Mango Overnight Oats. These oats are so good, bring on the cold!

 

Raspberry Mango Overnight Oats

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 Chobani Mango yogurt
  • 1/3 cup Almond Milk unsweetened vanilla
  • handful of frozen raspberries
  • chia seeds– I sprinkled my heart away, not sure how much went in

Speaking of rain. I forgot that my American Eagle canvas slip-ons don’t do well with rain.

I went from cute and sophisticated (yes my mirror is too low and I’m kneeling), to fashion fail.

Gotta keep those men on their toes when they try to figure out my style! 😉

Jen and I have RIPPED at noon today so it’ll be nice to mix up my lunch workout. Ohhhh these muscles are going to be crying tomorrow!

In Trouble with the IT Gods

What a day what a day! So many good things have already happen that it destroys my crappy morning. I hit snooze an extra time this morning, silencing that annoying alarm. I was exhausted and decided my body desired that extra 8 minutes of shut-eye. I woke with the return of yesterdays’ pain in my inner right thigh; really hoping it doesn’t turn into the sprained groin I suffered ran through last spring.

I wanted to take it easy on my run this morning, and knew I absolutely had to get cardio in since I enjoyed peanut butter smeared on grapes and saltines. Wow, healthy night. Oh, the health fest continued with Twizzlers and a Reese’s peanut butter cup. I’m sorry, I HAD to. Emphasis on caps and bold, you know I mean business.

I ended up finishing at 3 miles, which doesn’t include the short walk and stretch breaks I took randomly throughout my run. Last spring when I sprained my groin I was stubborn and ran through the pain. Big mistake, as it forced me to go to physical therapy and took about 5 months to heal, and it wasn’t even fully healed at that point. My stretching will be lengthened and the cardio I choose to do will be better examined. I have a race soon so I can’t let it sideline me!

Morning Workout

  • 3 mile run
  • 2 sets of 20 mountain climbers
  • 3 sets of 1 minute plank holds
  • 100 jumping jacks
  • Stretching

2 of those plank holds were done at work.. I’m almost at my daily goal of 5 minutes of daily planking. Only 2 more minutes to go and I have 12 hours to get it done in. Totally doable, right guys?

I enjoyed this mouth-watering strawberry banana breeze protein smoothie I picked up last night before my meeting at Primetime Wellness. So good, but apparently there wasn’t enough protein to satisfy me.

Yesterday I also scored a pretty kick ass deal from LivingSocial and claimed 2 offers from Starbucks, which was spend $5 and get a $10 gift card. So for $10 I now have $20 to drop at Starbucks. Boo-yah bitches!

I also received my cookies & cream protein from Herbalife last night. I’m looking forward to finding some smoothie recipes for that powder, as I’d believe it’d be too sweet on its own. If you have any recipes you recommend, throw them at me!

Today is also payday! I love when payday comes after a long weekend. Not only does the work week fly by (hello it’s seriously almost Friday?!), but it’s a nice surprise to get that check, whether big or small.

Check out my favorite new bracelet I was telling you guys about that I ordered on practically quadruple sale from J.Crew. I love love love it!

I had to include a diva-ish pose in the modeling of the new bracelet. Mandatory.

To break all the above good news, IT just called me and scolded me for hogging all the bandwidth. Why yes I have YouTube open, no I’m not watching videos, I’m listening to music sillies! Since Pandora is only available from noon until 1 pm, I have taken advantage of listening to music on YouTube for the past 4 months. Looks like no more David Nail today.

On that note, since I can now hear breathing from the opposite end of the office, I will find another way to rebel against the IT Gods.

Sleepless in New Hampshire

Last week J.Crew Outlets emailed me “personally” 😉 to tell me that there was a 30% off sale on tops, including the clearance price. I freaked out and dropped everything I was doing to see if the shirt I bought last weekend was on sale. Guess what, it was! I got the shirt in a red, white and blue scheme, along with a very pretty bracelet for a grand total of $50 dollars. Steal! My package arrived last night so of course I HAD to wear the new top today. I feel like such a cowgirl!

Going Cray for my New J.Crew Shirt!

Okay, moving along past the excitement.  Last night I went to Primetime Wellness after getting my rump kicked in spinning, and downed a Reese’s Peanut Butter smoothie while talking with David and Melyssa about the company and becoming a distributor of Herbalife. Well, I joined, and will now be spreading the love and success of Herbalife to everyone and anyone, I’m so excited about this new venture! I will get into the company a little later on when I have more time to sit down and discuss it in full-depth.

Along with my smoothie, I received a tea, which I’m PRETTTTTTTY positive was laced with caffeine, which resulted in me waking up at 3am for a trip to the bathroom and kept me awake until 5am. Really cool, especially since my alarm went off at 5:35am. I’m a zombie, and will probably be skipping spinning tonight since I’m exhausted and feel like I could throw up. If I get sick before seeing Kip tomorrow night, I will tear shit up! Watch out immune system, don’t mess with me!

I snoozed an extra time this morning, as I deserved it after last night’s torture, and only lost a few minutes from my normal running period. I struggled through 3.1 miles, part due to my lack of sleep and also due to my little legs getting owned in spinning.

Morning Workout

  • 3.1 mile run
  • 2 sets of 1 minute planks
  • 2 sets of 20 mountain climbers
  • 50 crunches and 50 side-to-side crunches
  • 2 sets of 13 squats with overhead dumbbell press, 8 lbs.
  • 2 sets of 13 deadlifts with chest extension, 8 lbs. dumbbells
  • 2 sets of 13 standing side crunches, 8 lbs. dumbbells
  • Stretching

The core work felt extremely good, and I’m looking forward to tackling a cardio hodgepodge session today during lunch. Hope everyone is having a more “alert” Tuesday than I am.

Gypsy Weekend with the College Girls

Like I said earlier, this weekend has been cray cray. My former college roomies came up to NH this weekend for our Gypsy Weekend, and it was quite the event! It was so good seeing those girls. Lindsay lives the next town over from me so we’re always together, but I hadn’t seen Michelle since October, and Nicole since last June!

Michelle came Friday night, but because I was in RI seeing Chris, Linds and Michelle went out, and I headed to Lindsay’s Saturday after my 4.2 mile run.

We ended up going to the Merrimack Outlets, which just opened up several months ago, to buy some cute new clothes. We all made out with some very cute purchase, which I’m excited about! I was good with my money and only bought one shirt from J.Crew. I SO could have spent hundreds there, but since I’m so good with my money, I simply treated myself to one top, which I’m IN LOVE with.

J. Crew Button Down

After that, we hit up the grocery store where we bought ingredients to bake Nicole birthday cupcakes. Her birthday is Tuesday! Upon getting back to Lindsay’s condo, we started baking up a storm and thought it’d be fun to experiment with food coloring to make pretty frosting.

Linds and Michelle Posing Mid Baking

We then had fun with some sprinkles!

Who Doesn’t Love Sprinkles?!

After baking, we all showered and got dolled up before heading downtown for a couple of beers at my favorite bar, Murphy’s. There, we met a couple of guys, talked, had a blast, and we ran into the boy I had my first kiss with. What a small world!

 

My Girls

Today, Nicole came up, as she was busy Saturday and couldn’t make it, so once she arrived, we went out for a yummy lunch at The Puritan (the girls wanted their famous mudslides), and we caught up for a long time before heading back to Lindsay’s. We then devoured the cupcakes (after making Nicole blow out her candles first), and continued to catch up before the girls had to start their drives home to Boston and CT.

Birthday Cupcakes

Time for me to catch up on laundry, my messes around the house and editing several pictures from Friday night. Hope you all had a great weekend!