Friday Favorites #31

It has been a hot minute since I have done a Friday Favorites post. I am looking forward to the weekend that will be fitness focused. On Saturday, I am teaching my usual cycle class before driving up north for my niece’s birthday. On Sunday, I am not teaching my usual Orangetheory classes because I have TRX Training! I have been wanting to get my certification for quite some time. The certification is a full 8 hour day but I love learning so I am looking forward to it. Before the weekend starts, I am sharing some of my favorites from this week! Play along and share your favorites in the comments.

Jamba Juice Island Pitaya Bowls – I am obsessed – I have had 3 this week! The fresh fruit (3 of my favs) on the top is perfection. Perfect breakfast and start to my day!


“Eat, Sleep, OTF” Shirt – This shirt has my life summed up perfectly. I have been all about OTF lately. Since coming back from my trip, I have been playing catch up. Spending a little more time than usual just means I have done an Orangetheory workout almost everyday.


Craft Time – As we are still in the processing our decorating our home, I finally gathered all of the maps I have been collecting. I purchased new frames this week and went to town cutting the maps to fit the frame. I love having all of the places I have visited framed to see everyday. My plan is to put them as a gallery wall at the top of our stairs so I can see them every single day!


Pump Day – YES, just yes!


Home of Spoiled Dog – My favorite housewarming gift! Lets be honest, it’s Emma’s house, we just live there.


Lululemon Fringe Fighter Headbands – I posted about these bad boys a weeks ago on Instagram. I cannot get enough. They are reversible, comfortable and super cute. My headband collection just continues to grow!


Tell me: What were your favorites from the week? What is your favorite fruit? 

 

Cycle Workout & Playlist

Although it seems my life has been all Orangetheory lately, I have actually still been teaching cycle twice a week. Cycle was my first love and will always be one of my favorite group exercise formats to teach. After teaching for over 3 years, sometimes it seems like I have heard some of the same “workout” songs a million times (I am talking to you Sandstorm). The other day I made a point of picking artists that have a song I normally use in playlists. This time I looked for songs that aren’t as common or overplayed. I ended up not only finding new songs that have high energy and a strong beat but being reminded of songs that I had not heard in a while. Today I am sharing my latest cycle workout and playlist.

Cycle Workout & Playlist
Cycle Workout & Playlist

Warm- up / Hey Brother – Avicii 
Standing Climb / Hair – Little Mix
Jumps (up/down) / Heart Attack – Demi Lovato
Seated Climb / Kids – One Republic
Standing Sprints on the Chorus / I Cry – Flo Rida
Jumps (up/across the saddle) / A-YO – Lady Gaga
Across the Saddle Climb / Into You – Ariana Grande
Jumps (up/across the saddle/ down) / Bring It Back – Shy Carter
Seated Climb / Tightrope – Walk The Moon
Seated Sprints on the Chorus / Find You – Zedd
Jumps (up/down) – HandClap – Fitz and the Tantrums
Standing Sprints on the Chorus / Applause – Lady Gaga
Seated Climb –> Standing Climb / In My Head – Jason Derulo
Jumps (20 secs up/ 20 secs down) / Somebody Loves You – Betty Who
Cooldown on the Bike / Try Me – Jennifer Lopez & Jason Derulo
Cooldown off the Bike/ I Love You Always Forever – Betty Who

Tell me: What was your first love when you started working out? 

Reflecting on 2016 after our last trip

I am having major post travel blues. We just returned from 10 days in Spain and it was glorious. As seen on Instagram, we were in both Madrid and Barcelona. I am hoping to get my recaps up as soon as possible before every detail slips my mind but for now I am going to revel in my trip as much as possible. Before the trip I did some major reminiscing of our past trips which made me think a lot about the past year.

Reflecting on 2016

I have to admit, when I re-read my goals for 2016 I laughed out loud. Besides traveling, I did not complete much of what I set out to. However, 2016 most certainly did not turn out as I expected when I made those goals. At the end of the day, that is the best part about life. What has come from the unexpected and unplanned goals was some memorable life moments. Also although we did not get as many trips as last year, we still had an epic honeymoon in New York, Greece and Boston. We also were able to visit Napa Valley in the summer.  Just because I did not succeed in the fitness goals I set for the year, does not mean I did not accomplish anything throughout the year.

  1. Got my dream job in the fitness industry 
  2. Became an Orangetheory coach
  3. Completed 130 burpees for charity 
  4. Finished Hell Week at Orangetheory 
  5. Ran 2 half marathons (OC Half and Run Revel)

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So what about 2017? To be honest, I am not sure I want to put goals down on paper and have next year be the same thing. However, having New Year goals is beneficial in trying to get my year to look like how I want. But I want to be open to change in case this year turns out like the last. Obviously I am traveling as we just returned from Spain. This is the first time though we have NO idea where we will head for the rest of the year. I have some fitness goals I know I will accomplish like the OC Half Marathon and continuing to coach. There are some things like another triathlon that has been put on the back burner too long.

Tell me: Did you complete your 2016 New Year’s Resolutions?

2016: The Year of Growth

It only took a week into 2016 to recap. At the rate I have been going, I would call this a success. My “Year of Traveling in Love” led into a year that would be one of my own most challenging. 2016 was in short, a very trying year. I have learned a lot about myself and how much I can handle. I have also learned about what I want in life which inevitably lead to my dream job. My year of many struggles can easily be summed up into –  “The Year of Growth.” Despite some hardships, this year was also filled with many wonderful memories and exciting opportunities.

2016

Highlights of 2016:

Landing my dream job
Becoming an Orangetheory Coach
Wine Tasting in Temecula
Two USC Games
My only brother got married
Purchasing our first home

Two races completed: OC Half and Run Revel

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Two vacations taken: Our Honeymoon and Napa Valley

One country visited: Greece

Delos Greece

Three states visited: Massachusetts, New York and Connecticut

Brooklyn New York Botanical Gardens

 

Three types of group fitness taught: Cycle, Bootcamp and Orangetheory

The worst moment of 2016: Being stuck in a job where I was unhappy 

The best moment of 2016: Our travel themed wedding

Travel Themed Wedding

Here’s to hoping 2017 is another year filled with adventure, travel and growth!

Workout Wednesday: 12 Days of Christmas

Happy Workout Wednesday! I can’t believe we only have 4 days until Christmas. Luckily, I am pretty much done with shopping and starting Friday I get to enjoy some time with family. One of the hardest things during the holidays is to continue eating healthy and getting workouts in. During the holidays, however is the time you should be working out to control your stress level. Today, for Workout Wednesday, I am sharing a workout that you can do in your home in between wrapping those presents and prepping for the season. You do not need anything more than a set of dumbbells to complete this holiday themed workout.

Equipment Needed: Dumbbells
Directions: Complete 2-3 rounds of the exercises, top to bottom

12 Days of Christmas

12 bicep curls
11 shoulder presses
10 tricep dips
9 dumbbell lunges
8 dumbbell squats
7 bent rows
6 reverse crunches
5 side dips (each side)
4 straight leg crunches
3 pushups
2 mountain climbers
1 burpee

Added challenge: Complete this challenge as a add-on workout. Starting at 1 burpee, complete 1 burpee. Then complete 1 burpee + 2 mountain climbers. Move on to 1 burpee + 2 mountain climbers + 3 pushups until you have worked through the workout. 

Tell me: Have you completed all your Christmas shopping?

Life.

Where do I start? 

In a matter of one week, I left the corporate world, moved out of our apartment, moved into our first home and started a new job. Needless to say, it has been a very exciting, eventful and busy few months. Truth be told, I will gladly take a little insanity because I am so genuinely happy for my next chapter. The next chapter however comes from a place of gratefulness that everything works out in the end.

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The truth is for many months, I was very unhappy. I was struggling at my job. I did not love what I was doing. I was unhappy with the work life balance. I was letting the stress eat away at me. I knew something needed to change but most of the time I felt like I was drowning. I got through some of the roughest times because I constantly reminded myself of my blessings: my husband, my friends, my health and getting to still teaching group fitness during the week. Then in November, a prayer was answered. I was offered the job of studio manager of the Orangetheory studio I coach at. My passion of fitness had actually turned into a full time job. In the past, the husband and I had discussed my love of Orangetheory and how to make it into an actual job. Here that dream job landed in my lap. It was like I saw all the work I had invested in fitness over the past two years all paid off and led me to this job.

Today, I finally feel like I can take a full breath. I have settled into my new job. We are unpacked and starting the fun part of decorating. I actually have a night off during the week to do whatever I want and am still able to coach. As a whole, I feel lighter, happier, less stressed out. Now being on the other side of the valley I was in, I can appreciate what I have been through in the last year. Even more, I am excited for 2017. With a new mindset and environment, I am excited for new resolutions. One of course is to dust off the blog and start writing again! So, I hope you stick around.. There will be more workouts, fitness and of course travel.

Have a great Monday! 

Run Revel Recap

As I sit writing up this recap, I am sporting compression socks and KT Tape after having just taken some ibuprofen. On the same note, I am still riding the high of getting a half marathon PR at the Run Revel Canyon City Half Marathon! I went into this race with the goal to utilize the net loss on this course and finally get that new PR.

Revel Race Start

On Saturday morning we made our way to the race at 4:30am to be bused up to the start line. Boy was it cold at the start but the race provided blankets (wow did they work), beanies and throw away gloves. The sunrise from the start was beautiful as we made our way to the start line. I read from past runners that the race just starts without warning. Even despite my constant warnings to my husband to be ready to just start running, I was still shocked when someone at the start line shouted “we are going.” The first few miles I was expecting rolling hills so I told myself to take it easy for the first few miles. Although the first 4 miles had a lot of downhill, there was a net gain which I felt early on. But I stuck with telling myself to maintain slow and steady through the first 6 miles and evaluate how I feel after.

A Rough Finish

After miles 6 there was a net loss but still some notable climbing and where my shins starting feeling the rolling hills I had done. At this point, I was still on track to hit a PR with a few minutes to spare so until miles 10, my goal was to maintain a steady pace and leave myself at least 5 minutes to work with in that last 5K. Thank goodness I had that buffer because it saved me in the last 2 miles. At miles 11, I started hurting. I would alternate walking and running but at this point, everything started to hurt. My knees would hurt when I ran but my shins and feet hurt when walking. When I got to mile 12 I realized this was going to be a push to the last second. As I rounded the corner in the last mile, there was a small climb in front of me and I thought my PR was out the door. Thankfully, the hubby finished (he PR’d again this half) before me and told me that after the last small climb it was a downhill finish. I chugged (VERY very slowly) up the last climb and gave everything I had in the last .20 miles into the finish line. I have never run so fast and as I crossed that finish line, I am so happy I did because I PR’d by 3 seconds. Seconds are seconds and it was a PR no matter what.


Although tough at times, this definitely is one of my favorite races. It was very well organized, offered a beautiful course and heavily supported. The expo was very easy to get in and out (even though it was more like a packet pick-up with limited amount of vendors). In the bag received with my bib, I also go the cold weather items mentioned above which came in handy at the start line. There were aid stations about every 2 miles with water, Gatorade and some offered fuel. Although the mountains did not allow for spectators until the last 1 miles, the scenery more than made up for that. I stopped a few times to snap a picture because it was so gorgeous. Overall, this was one of the best races I have participated in and the new PR only made it better!

Tell me: Would you rather run downhill or uphill? I always thought I loved downhill but with my knees and shin problems, I would prefer uphill!

“Those are just excuses”

“I haven’t worked out in 4 days”

“My legs, arms, mouth, fill in the blank are sore”

“I am tired”

“It’s too late”

These are just a few of the statements my husband heard on our run last night. While some of them were true, half way through I started spouting off some of them to him. He simply said, “Those are just excuses.” And yes they were. He said that, I started running again and did not stop until we finished. Did I struggle? Yes. Was I tired and sore? Definitely. But did I finish? YES! I tried to use my excuses to justify not doing it when I was capable just standing in my own way.

In the first mile I started telling myself there was no way I would be able to do the half marathon (Run Revel) on Saturday if I was struggling already. My negative thoughts spiraled into thinking that I haven’t trained enough and I should back out of the race. Until my husband snapped me back (as he does 99.784715% of the time I act mildly crazy), I was letting my excuses lead my thinking because of one tough run. Sometimes we try and reason with ourselves by making excuses. What does that get you? Absolutely nothing. So the next time you feel the excuses starting (this applies to everything beyond fitness), stop and ask yourself – Are these just excuses? to stop the cycle and focus yourself back on track.

OC Marathon Coupon Code 

I am not in training mode for the OC Half Marathon yet but it will be here before you know it. The OC Half and Full Marathon 2017 prices increased on November 1st but if you missed the price increase, I have a coupon code to share with you today. You can get the same price before the price increase by using the coupon code below:

oc-half-marathon-coupon-code-2017

Tell me: What is your most used excuse? Mine is always “I am too tired”

Weekly Workouts: Revel & OC Half Training

 

Happy Monday! This weekend was a nice weekend filled with some family traditions and plenty of working out. On Saturday, I taught cycle class before heading to the pumpkin patch with the husband, my mom and sister. We have a yearly tradition to visit a local pumpkin patch as well as go apple picking so we got both done in one day.

The weather was absolutely perfect with clear skies and warm weather. Although I would prefer to be wearing flannels and boots while doing fall activities, the warm Cali weather is a good second choice. The husband and I enjoyed a nice dinner at Brio (their grilled salmon is to die for) to finish off our Saturday. My Sunday started nice and early teaching 4 classes at Orangetheory. The rest of the day was low key with relaxing, packing and napping.

weekly-workouts

This upcoming week is going to be a rough one of workouts. It is Hell Week at Orangetheory this week. I got a glimpse into the workouts of the week and needless to say, it will be a week of intense workouts. This past week, my running really got skipped over. This next week, even with Hell Week workouts, I need to ensure I get plenty of mileage in with Run Revel only 2 weeks away.

Monday – Rest Day

Tuesday – 1 hour cycle class followed by arm workout

Wednesday – Orangetheory class

Thursday – Shoulder and back workout, 20 min elliptical workout

FridayAb workout, 3 mile run

Saturday – 1 hour cycle class

Sunday – Rest Day

Tell me: Have you been to a pumpkin patch or apple picking this year?

Staying Healthy in Sin City

You’ve worked out consistently for weeks, ate every green vegetable you could think of and drank water like crazy – all in preparation for your upcoming vacation. You go on vacation, eat whatever you want and forget about the gym the second you hit the pool. When you get home from vacation, you step on the scale to realize you have not only gained back what you lost but brought a few extra souvenir pounds with you. Who else has been there??

Sadly this used to be a regular occurrence when traveling. I have learned however that a vacation doesn’t have to be the end to a healthy lifestyle. Now when I travel, I want to be able to enjoy my travels but maintain the hard work I have put in. While it requires a little planning, staying healthy while traveling is important and something you will appreciate yourself for after the fact.

staying-healthy-in

But how do you stay healthy in a city that is known for buffets, alcohol and lounging by the pool? Well as you are planning your next trip to Sin City, check out some of the best deals for hotels on Vegas.com for hotels and activities in Las Vegas.

To ensure you keep up your lifestyle, here are 4 tips for staying healthy in Las Vegas, Nevada:

Set aside time for a workout

You don’t want to let your hard work go down the drain so start your day off on the right foot with a sweat session. Whether you visit the hotel gym or fitness studio in the area, make sure you set aside time to workout (I know I plan to visit the Orangetheory in Vegas the next time I’m there). Whether you love to workout at the barre or have a gym membership, find a workout that you love to do so you will stick with your workout routine through vacation. Better yet, set your next full or half marathon to be in Vegas (Rock “N” Roll Vegas was one of the best I have done) so you can enjoy a runcation. If all else fails, dance some calories off by hitting up one of the night clubs! Even if you don’t want to leave the hotel room (and may have enjoyed your night out a little too much) use a no equipment needed workout to get your heart pumping and burn some calories.

Use your feet to explore

I can’t tell you how many times I have walked up and down the strip. With traffic and congestion on the Strip, walking to your destination is the way to go! This has led to also finding great bars, restaurants and casinos along the way. A great way to get your steps in while exploring Sin City is walking around the city. Another fun activity? Walking to get a bird’s eye view of Vegas on the stairs to the top of the Stratosphere! Remember walking may not get you sweaty but you are burning calories to prepare you for the time you will spend sitting at the tables or next to the pool.

Allow yourself one cheat meal

Like I mentioned, Vegas is known for delicious food. Vegas has some of the most amazing restaurants (now my mouth is watering for some Grand Lux Cafe!!!) but they could also pack your daily calories into one meal! This is why people gain back the weight they lost if not more when on vacation. They simply take in more calories than they are burning. Allow yourself one meal, drink or dessert that you will indulge in (I got through my half marathon telling myself I would get a Sprinkles cupcake after). It is all about balance so make sure to keep your 80/20 rule so you are only indulging 20% of the time. The 80% of the time when you are not eating a cheat meal, utilize some of the healthier food options that Vegas does have like Skinny Fats, Canyon Ranch Grill and Protein House.

Take an active day trip

Vegas really is the center location from a lot of national parks. You are a fairly short drive to Red Rock (the closest), Zion, Bryce and Grand Canyon. Why not take a day trip to enjoy nature? Hiking in some of the most beautiful parks around the US is a great way to further expand your trip and get your heart pumping. In addition, Vegas is close to Lake Mead, Laughlin and Havasu where you can enjoy water activities like wake boarding, water skiing, boating and kayaking. Especially during the warmer months, you get to burn some calories and cool off in the water! Even if you do not want to drive, you can set up a tour (Vegas.com) to get you to one of the nearby destinations to do some exploring!


Tell me: Do you work out when you go on vacation?