Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Summer 2012 Challenges!

If you've read through my blog before, you would know that I love to take on x day challenges. I thrive in those environments!Especially when it's with other people, the support and the accountability, as well as my inner stubbornness, make for a great and awesome 30 or 40 days.

So this summer there are 2 that I am currently accomplishing.

The first is a 30 day 80/10/10, high carb low fat raw vegan challenge with Freelee from She has been a massive inspiration to so many people, including me. There are over 800 people taking on her challenge and the group is amazing! People from every background are attending, directly from SAD all the way to the high fat raw foodists and some 811 peeps too!

Everyone has a thread on the facebook event and posts their daily food, exercise, feeling, water and sleep. The ones who will post everyday for 30 days, not only succeed their goal but get to have freelee's next ebook as well.

Freelee's awesome b/a pics

We're on day three of this challenge and I feel amazing already. I really needed this extra push to get back into raw, where I feel my best! I'll be taking some before pics today and post them this week :)

The second challenge, which started at the same time, is a 40 day fitness challenge with my awesome friend Fruitilicious Jules! Basically a physical challenge while being raw, the goal is to get fit! Same postings as the other group but with a bigger emphasis on exercise.

These are my first 2 posts:

Day One almost done this side :)

I ran 3k in morning and did 20 mins of squats, crunches, lunges and plank in the evening.

Half a large watermelon
5 x-large banana smoothie
4 large nana and 2 med papaya smoothie
Large salad with tomato and 1/3 avo

2 liters of water

8.5 hours of sleep

Was intending a stronger workout at the gym but decided to stay home instead. I might still have another meal to end the day, since I'm only at 2300 cals right now :) Feeling great and excited about experiencing this challenge with everyone!

Day 2!!

Exercise: 1.5 hours at the gym. 103 flights of stairs, 11.2K on the bike, 32 assisted pullups, arm routine and some ab work.

Breakfast: 6 cups of grapes and 2 cups local strawberries
Lunch: 2x 7 large banana smoothie
After Workout: 4 large bananas
Dinner: Rainbow Chard Salad with tomato sauce and 3/4 of an avo
Calories: 3,422

Water: 3 Liters

Sleep: 9 hours

I had a great day :) Upping the cals and pushing more in my workout definitely helped my mood and overall feeling.

Day three is going great so far :) I was experiencing some headaches and craving the first day, which got better the second day and are now gone.

I'm really happy that these challenges came around at exactly the right time for me! Ask and you shall receive. Positive thinking is the key, as is the law of attraction!

Have a fruitastic day!

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

My Favorite Fitness Tools of the moment.

Fitness regimes can include the most minimal tools to the elaborate and complicated. My fitness routine is always changing, but I think that there are still a few things that are universal to good form and great workouts. I've been very consistent in my workouts lately and there are a few things that I can truly say helped get to working out 5-6 times a week, and wanting to do them.

Footwear is definitely number one in my books. Although I am very curious about barefoot running, working out in the gym requires some form of footwear. These were a birthday present to myself and I've put them to good use! It's amazing the difference that a fitted appropriate for you feet pair of shoes can make. My knees no longer hurt and neither do my feet. Having high arches I always thought that I needed then supported when really I needed neutral shoes with appropriate cushioning. I say that the investment is without a doubt worth it. My next purchase in this department will be five finger shoes, to try out the barefoot running style. I think that going to a dedicated fitness store with people who know what they're talking about and who can really help you with fit is anyone's best bet to an awesome pair of shoes.

Next on my newly discovered but now essential list are compression sleeves or socks. I always had issues with my calves "seizing" up after a really good run and it discouraged me from pushing harder. Turns out I have circulation issues from having been sedentary. These have made my workouts easier to recover from and no more tight calves!

Properly fitting clothes are without a doubt much better to work out in. Being comfortable at the gym should be much more important than the latest fashion or fitting into a certain size. I prefer shorts and sleeveless tops, and I make sure to have the appropriate support for the girls as well. This means a running bra for running, a sports bra at the gym or hiking, etc and maybe just a built-in for yoga or the like.

This one gets a ton of use in my fitness regiment, not only do I use my yoga mat for yoga itself, but also to do calisthenics, quick workouts and stretching. It's also great to sit on for meditation.

Having a set of weights or elastic bands are great to have around when you feel like focusing on specific muscles or want to add resistance to some body weight exercises. I like using them mostly for arm and chest workouts.

Those are  really the basics, the next ones are not necessarily essential. But they are my current "obsessions".

 I've become seriously acquainted with the stepper at my gym. I always climb a minimum of 1000 steps, up to 2000. It's my favorite workout at the moment and boy does it get me sweating! 

Ever since I trained for the rowing team, I've loved the rower as a full body cardio workout. Learning the proper form was a godsend and I've been pushing it on this machine ever since!

The rest of my workouts consist of yoga classes, strength training with either body weight exercises, free weights or the machines at the gym, tons of cardio including the two above as well as cycling and running. It's going very well for me because of the variety that I include in my schedule. I feel stronger and fitter, and it only gets better from here!