Fitness Pet Peeves: a rant

Hi! Sorry I’ve been so quiet lately! With school starting up and the big move looming, I’ve been a little preoccupied. I thought today I would share my top 10 fitness let peeves:

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10. No gym etiquette: re-rack your weights. Wipe down your machine. No hogging dumbbells. Come on…be nice!

9. Using machines incorrectly: I’m really not much of a machine user, but if you insist on using the tricep push down machine, stop hunching your shoulders. If you’re using the bicep curl machine, stop flinging your hips around. Got it? Good.

8. Trainers that spend more time looking in the mirror than at their clients: there’s a trainer at my gym that literally fixes her hair for the entire 50 min session with clients. I’ve watched clients attempts exercises that were WAY too difficult, but she was busy addressing her ponytail. I was appalled. Remember: trainers are not all created equal. Research what you want and don’t be afraid to move around until you find a good match!

7. Talking on the phone: I know really important things are happening…but please stop yaking on the phone next to me on the treadmill. I don’t care about whatever gossip you’re spreading, you’re distracting and #basic.

6. Girls that don’t sweat: WTF??? I literally start sweating as soon as I get out if my car in the parking lot…why isn’t your mascara running down your cheeks like a normal human?? These chicks might be the 8th wonder of the world.

5. Lifting weight that’s too heavy: if you want to get an injury, totally lift an obscene amount of weight with horrible form. Make sure to make a ton of grunting sounds, too, so everyone makes sure to see you.

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4. Lifting weight that’s too light: “I lift 3 times a week with 3 pound weights! I don’t know why I’m not seeing any results!”. This is seriously a huge issue for me as a trainer. LADIES: heavy weights will not make you a man. Being “toned” isn’t a thing. You need to build lean muscle for definition, which means lifting weights. You should pick a weight that you can complete each exercise for 10-12 reps. The last 2-3 should be hard, without sacrificing form. I PROMISE you won’t get huge. Unless you start taking testosterone supplements…then that’s your problem. You can read more into my heavy lifting rant here.

3. Unsolicited advice: I know I might look like a helpless little chick in the weight room and you probably think that I don’t know what I’m doing, but unless I ask for help, don’t give me advice on curl form while you swing your hips around like a weirdo. I got this, ok?

2. Cardio bunnies: stop doing program 3 at level 4 five days a week and complaining that you’re not seeing results. Your body will adapt and soon that identical workout everyday is basically useless. Also, stability, flexibility and strength training will increase your overall health and fitness level, not just burn x amount of calories.

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1. Justifying a meal with a workout: this is a tough one. Sure, exercising burns calories. You can eat more when you exercise more. Your metabolism increases as your lean muscle mass increases. But PLEASE don’t make excuses to eat something delicious. If you want that piece of cake, or slice of pizza, or entire bag of jelly belly’s, you should eat it because you want it. You do not need to justify that treat to anyone. Working out should be fun and satisfying on its own, it shouldn’t be a torture device to justify eating food and being a human.

What are your biggest fitness pet peeves?? Leave them in the comments!

xoR

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My Top 5 Foods

Hello! Happy Tuesday. Since I’m following a workout plan that I did not write, I figured I’d talk to you about my second love: FOOD. With that, here are my top 5 foods, without which I’d drop dead (or possibly something less dramatic).

1. Oats

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I eat oats pretty much every day. My breakfast is almost always the following:

  • .33 cup rolled oats
  • .66 cup water
  • .25 cup liquid egg whites
  • .5 banana
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 tsp chia seeds

Cook oats in water in microwave for 1 minute. Whisk in egg whites, zap for additional 30 secs. Top with banana, PB, and chia seeds.

Oats are awesome because they are a good source if soluble fiber, which has been shown to reduce cholesterol and lower blood pressure. That fiber also keeps you full longer than other cereals, plus it tastes damn good (in my bumble opinion). Source

2.  Speaking of peanut butter: Peanut Butter:

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I’ve raved about the benefits of this delicious butter of the gods, but in case you forgot:

“Each 2-tablespoon serving of peanut butter contains more than 8 grams of protein, nearly 2 grams of dietary fiber, 208 milligrams of potassium, more than half a gram of iron, 24 micromilligrams of folate, 188 calories and 3 grams of sugars. The fat content is 16 grams per serving, but only 3 grams of those are saturated. The rest of the fats are mono- and polyunsaturated, which have proven benefits for heart and muscle health. While the amounts of protein and fiber are not large, every bit counts when managing your macronutrients.” Source

3. Coffee:

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Real talk: I’m addicted to coffee. Not even good coffee. Just any resemblance of coffee-like drink will do. I’m no snob (although I would never say no to coffee!). I start every day with my eggy oats and exactly 2 cups of black coffee. My brain doesn’t function otherwise.  Caffeine is a stimulant, and there have been numerous studies confirming the benefits of coffee from increased energy to lower risk of Parkinson’s! Check out this article for more! (You can trust HuffPost. They only publish really awesome articles by very good looking people ;))

4. Hummus:

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Ok, I know this makes me a total #basicbitch, but if I had to marry a food it would be hummus. I eat it by the bucketful.

A 2-tablespoon serving of hummus contains 50 calories, 2 grams of protein, 3 grams of fat and 4 grams of carbohydrates, including 2 grams of fiber. Only 0.4 grams of fat is saturated. This combination of protein and fiber will help keep you feeling full for longer than a high-fat dip that doesn’t contain much fiber, such as a full-fat ranch dip. Source

5. Champagne:

Some say there are health benefits to champagne. Honestly, I don’t care. I just wanna drink bubbles all day, everyday.

xoR

AMRAP Workout and GIVEAWAY!

Hello! What a crazy week it’s been! School has officially started and I am TIRED! Zzzzz.

lets talk AMRAP. AMRAP is an acronym for As Many Rounds/Reps As Possible. It’s a pretty awesome workout format that is exactly what you think: a series or circuit workout that you just complete as many times as possible for a set amount of time. It’s no joke and really forces you to work ruhl hard.

Here’s an AMRAP workout I wrote earlier this week. I did this as a finisher to my lower body workout and made it through 2 rounds. It was a lot harder than I thought! Give it a try and let me know how many rounds you made it through!

AMRAP Body Weight Workout

complete as many rounds as you can of the following circuit for 6 minutes straight

  • 10 jump squats
  • 15 pushups
  • 20 KB swings
  • 15 inchworms
  • 10 burpees

Speaking of AMRAP, I was invited to try some new protein bars by AMRAP USA. HOLY YUM these things are awesome! Here’s what AMRAP has to say:

The 100% Paleo, Non­GMO, gluten­free, dairy­free, preservative and artificial anything­free, high fat to carb ratio, high protein bar designed by experts, athletes, enthusiasts, discerning moms and health nuts.

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They are jam packed with real food and nutrition power houses! They’re great for a snack, preworkout, post workout, or meal supplement! Even Chris ate one by mistake and rave about how delish it was! They’re a little on the sticky side,  but otherwise have a really nice smooth texture, no chalky aftertaste, and REALLY filling! Since there’s no artificial sweeteners, there’s no belly ache, and since they’re sweetened with fruit, they keep you full!

Aaaaaaand it’s your lucky day! I’m giving away a free box of AMRAP bars (a $48 value!). A winner will be chosen at random next Thursday! Click the rafflecopter link below to enter!
*UPDATE!* there will be 3 winners! Each winner will receive an 8-pack of bars in your choice of flavor!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Make sure to follow AMRAP on Facebook,  twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

have a fab day!

xoR

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disclaimer: I was provided with the aforementioned product for free in return for a review. All opinions are my own.

Bye Bye Summer: the ups and downs

Hi! Happy Labor Day! It’s my last official day of summer vacation (#sadface), so I thought I’d give you a little wrap up and perspective as we ease into fall.

As as you might remember, summer was a little rocky for me. See here and here for more info about how summer impacted my recovery this year. It wasn’t all fun and games this season. I certainly had my share of ED dips, but coincidentally, I also feel the most recovered ever. I’ve learned so much about myself this year and have made a very clear and conscious decision to leave ED in the past. Sure, I had tough moments, but I also had a kickass time living my life! I did tons of traveling, eating, and drinking, plus I fit fitness into my life without compromise.

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No, I did not achieve everything on my bucket list, but it did push me outside of my routine! I ran a super muddy/foamy 5k. I went to new fitness classes like boot camp and spin, went to Miami with a bunch of hot chicks, Newport with the hubs, and lived through and earthquake in Napa. Plus I landed an awesome new job and we bought our dream house! So yeah, this summer rocked.

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All in all, a fab summer! We rounded out the summer by going to a UMass football game (our alma mater!), eating many brownies at a BBQ, and going to the beach for one last hurrah. Have a fab holiday!

Change is Good…right???

Morning! It’s Friday and also my last official day of summer vacation :( I start my new job in Tuesday (which is exciting!), and things are about to get super crazy.

If we’re friends on FB you already know, but Chris and I bought a house! We’re super pumped and can’t wait to move to our new town and get situated, but there are several road bumps already along the way. For example, our lease was extended to 9/30, but we don’t close on our new house until 10/31…uhhh…so my fabulous parents are gaining two human and two feline roommates for a few weeks. Thanks mom and dad!

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As I said above, I’m also starting a new job. New job and new house within a few weeks of one another would have previously been a recipe for disaster for me (although last time I moved and started a job, I also got married within a week). So many transitions can be anxiety provoking, and don’t get me wrong, I am definitely anxious. However, I’m not allowing these exciting memories to be overshadowed by stress and self-loathing. I’m letting it stay fun, and trying to just ride out the anxiety.

Yes, I’ve already thought about what gym I’ll join in the interim and what gym I’ll join in our new town. I’m sad to leave Gymit, since it’s cheap and awesome, but I’m sure something else will turn up!

Speaking of gyms, now that school is starting back up, Chris and I will hopefully get back into our morning workout routine and I will start sharing more workouts with you all again. I’m thinking about starting this cutting plan this weekend for the next 6 weeks until Rachel’s wedding!

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Anyone interested in joining me?? I like the combo of standard weight training, super sets and plyometrics in this program. Let’s do it!

So, all in all, transitions can be hard and scary, but they are also exciting and new! I’m going with the latter and can’t wait to see what this new year brings! Yay for change!

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Happy Labor Day! Stay safe and have a good time!

xoR

Napa Valley: Wine, Food, and Earthquakes

Hi everyone! I’m back from Cali and I have TONS to share. Guess I’ll start at the beginning!

I arrived in SFO/Napa on Wednesday morning to see my brother. We drank tons of wine, ate delicious food and saw beautiful sites. Here are some pics from Mumm (bubbles!), Sinskey (snacks!) and Scribe (Hipsters!):

that beagle is my new friend Lady. She is basically my spirit animals. She only paid attention to me when I fed her cheese.

On Saturday, Ben brought me up to Somerston, where he works. Holy gorgeous! It was insanely scenic and fabulous. We had the whole place to ourselves, so we drove around in a fire engine red ATV, drank wine, ate pears and strawberries and took in the views!

For whatever reason, we decided to stay in on Saturday night and watch a movie with Ben’s friends. Lucky we did because come 3:20 AM, I was awoken to the world shaking all around me. I can’t really remember exactly what happened because I had been sleeping so deeply, but I hopped off the couch, screamed for Ben and ran toward his doorway. The earthquake lasted between 30-60 seconds, but it felt like an eternity. Between my screams, glass shattering, the house flexing all the plaster from the walls, and the ground literally shoving itself into my feet, the din was overwhelming. When it finally ended, I found my footing, grabbed some shoes and got outside. I’m not exactly sure how the events sequenced because I sort of remember seeing Ben’s face, but the electricity was out, and I remember running to the door, but then fell down the stairs on the way out because my legs were still shaking. I proceeded to sit on the ground for a long time with my insides churning. We were nervous to go inside without the lights on, so we decided to head into town and survey the damage. There was glass and rubble everywhere. Bleary-eyed neighbors checked in on one another and wandered around, not sure what to do next.

When the sun finally came up, we headed home to see the damage. Every wall had cracked and hurled everything toward the middle of the rooms. It was interesting to see what broke and what stood. Wine bottles shattered on the floor, but stemmed glasses stood as it nothing had happened. The walls buckled, exposing beams underneath, but the TV didn’t even tip. So odd.

There was nothing left to do but drink some champagne, eat some cookie butter and feel lucky to be safe and unharmed.

I headed back to Boston on Sunday evening with tons of stories and a new found sense of WTF??? What I really realized is that worrying about bullshit like pizza and wine instead of enjoying every second while we’re here is plain stupid. I really, honestly!, feel like this has to be the end of all my anxieties. Sure, I could wander around being afraid of earthquakes, but what purpose does that serve me? Drink some bubbles, eat some cookie butter and chill. Cheers!

xoR

The Heavy Lifter’s Dilemma

Goooood morning!

Its absolutely GORGEOUS out today here in MA, so I’m hoping to post this bright and early and get outside!

I’ve been feeling a little lost at the gym lately. Actually scratch that. I haven’t been to the gym much lately. I’ve been trying to get outside as much as I can before school starts up again, so I’ve been doing some running (almost got that 4 mile mark!) and some group classes including spin and yoga. I realize that those are not outside, but it’s been such a nice way to mix up my regular routine of workouts. That being said, I really love lifting heavy shit…and I haven’t been doing much of that at all. I’m trying to make a more reasonable schedule for myself this fall since I’m starting a new job in a new town and I was so busy last year that I lost all focus. What that really means is being  more flexible…and we all know how easy that is for me. Well, I’ll give it a try. I’m hoping to lift, spin, and be merry in the not too distant future.

Anyway, speaking of the gym, here’s another upper body workout that I did last night. Since I’ve been taking a lot of spin classes, I’ve definitely been skimping in leg day…which is counterintuitive because stronger legs would make those hills and sprints much easier….my legs are just so tired! Oh well I’m sure quadzilla will make her return eventually.

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I finished off with tabata sprints on the treadmill

1. walk 1 min at 4.0

2. sprint 20s at 8.0-9.0

3. hop on side rails for 10s

4. repeat steps 2-3 for a total of 4 mins or 8 rounds.

5. Walk 1 min 3.0

That’s about it for me today. I’m off to California tomorrow to visit my bro, so don’t miss me too much! Make sure to keep tabs on my Instagram and twitter while I’m away. Both links are on the sidebar!

xoR