Finding a Healthy Balance

This is exactly why I started this blog – so I can help myself find a healthy balance in my life (it has been hard in the past).  This weekend, I think I found what I was looking for.

Friday night, hubby and I went out for a friend’s b-day at a new place in Denver called the PunchBowl.  We had a blast talking with our friends and having a drink.  We didn’t party hard, but still had a great time.

Saturday started with a great running workout:

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A delightful morning date with hubby to see:

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And then I made these (yes, I MADE them and they were delicious!):

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Sunday was a great hike with Jack and a good friend and her dog.  It was the first time they met and I was worried about Jack, but he surprised me and was amazing!

For the Super Bowl, I made some super-spicy chili and we went to a friend’s house to “watch” the game.  Really we played Cards Against Humanity during the game and watched the commercials until the second quarter.

I say I have found healthy balance because this weekend was the first time in a long time with me-time, hubby-time, friend-time, party-time, down-time, and puppy-time that didn’t make me feel overwhelmed and wanting to retreat to the house to take a breath.  It is a healthy balance because I ate well, but didn’t obsess about my food choices.  I skipped a solo bike workout to go hiking with a friend and didn’t feel like I had to justify it to myself.  I just wanted to take a moment to appreciate this about my life right now – because I haven’t felt this way in a long time and I want to remember it!

I want to create a healthy balance in my life.  And I think I am on my way to that.

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TGIF

I almost named this post “TGIFF.”  I will let you guess what the extra ‘F’ is for!  This week has been busy and laid back all at once.  Here’s why:

1. I finished the Whole30 program!  I’m still shocked that I was able to get through the whole 30 days (and 1 extra!) without many issues/cravings.  Of course there were a couple of things I did first thing this morning: I weighed myself (6 lbs gone!) and put my eggs and veggies on a whole wheat English muffin.  I know, I know: I’m not supposed to get my gluten on (even after the diet is through), but I wanted to see if gluten actually causes any hormonal/GI issues.  I figured that now was the time to find out (after my system has been cleaned out!).

2. Workout madness has made me unable to walk.  Ok, that was an exaggeration.  It just hurts to walk, or stand, or sit… So this is what I have been doing:

Wednesday Workout:

Biking: 8.51 miles in 32.30 mins and then some MAJOR stretching/yoga.  My legs were feeling it!

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Thursday Workout:

Strength Training (squats with shoulder press, pulsing lunges, rotating bicep curls, chest press, tri-kickback, tri-pulse – as many reps until failure x2) and then 3 mins on eliptical (because all the treadmills were full).  Then I ran 2.76 miles in 35 mins.

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Friday Workout:

Biking: 8.6 miles in 32.02 mins (hey, better than Wednesday…marginally) and then some ab work (standard crunches, side crunch with tri-lift, bicycles, banana/superman – P90X anyone?, leg drops, and more).

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I’m still on a swimming embargo until the new suit comes in (which should be today!!).

3. Eats: It may have been my last week on the Whole30, but I kept experimenting in the kitchen (for some huge wins).  Here are some of the new recipes I will be using again:

Spaghetti squash with spicy sausage and homemade tomato sauce (WIN)

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Balsamic marinated chicken with sweet potato fries (both are huge wins)

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Apple Chips (Super win!)

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That was a lot of cooking for someone considered a novice in the kitchen!  I’m not exaggerating when I say that my husband could count how many times I have cooked for him since getting together (8 years ago!) on one hand.  I blew that out of the water this last month!

Also, my love affair with smoothies continues: strawberry pineapple has been the winner this week (with strawberry banana close behind).  I love the whole frozen strawberries my husband got me – very handy for smoothies!

I leave you with my favorite thing to do when I’m done with the working out, cooking, working, cleaning, etc:

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Cuddle Time with Jack! (How could you not cuddle with that big goof butt?!)

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I Have None of the Luck

First of all, this was the view for my morning walk with the puppy:

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Absolutely gorgeous winter morning!

Now down to business.  I am currently nursing my finger and my pride.  I just seem to attract small misfortunes that make me feel a little like an idiot (or just slightly unlucky).  This was not nearly as embarrassing as the last incident (read about it here if you would like a good laugh), but it had the potential and I’m very happy it didn’t go that way.

I was happy to make it to the gym this morning, even after dealing with a blender that just didn’t want to blend this morning and icy roads.  I got started on the treadmill and enjoyed the first 15 mins just getting my run on (I felt awesome!).  Unfortuntately I wasn’t paying much attention to my swinging arms when I picked up the pace…or how close I was getting to the HR bar.  As a shorty, I always have to watch out for that stupid bar because it is at exactly waist height, which is where my arms swing.  I basically rammed my entire left hand into the bar, bent back my fingernail (son of a…that hurts!!) and proceeded to stumble on the treadmill going 6 mi/hr.  I know I flailed (a lot – limbs were going everywhere) and said a few choice words (more than a few – it was a good thing that there were no kids there, I would have felt bad!) before I was able to right myself and keep on going.  I’m VERY lucky I didn’t fall off of the treadmill or hit my head!  I heard a few snickers from the older gentlemen using the stationary bikes…I smiled and threw them a thumbs up sign and kept running.

I was able to finish my work out without further incident:

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Followed by 15 mins of ab work – which I am presently feeling just sitting down, so that is a good thing.

Smoothie of the Day: Blackberry Kiwi – which would have been amazing if there weren’t huge chunks of ice in it thanks to my lazy blender.

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Snowing in CO! (Finally)

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We haven’t gotten a lot of snow down here in the foothills. But this was unexpected! It was so nice this morning that I even forgot my coat! I had to wear my ugly sweater from last month (white elephant gift) to go to my car! I made it home safely and I’m going to make some hot tea to warm up. This is the first time I have wished to be off the Whole 30… I really would like some hot cocoa!

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Monday Motivation

After a weekend of work outs, good food, shopping, friends and family – it was hard to start of my day WITHOUT a workout.  Does anyone else find rest days hard when you are feeling motivated?!  I did today.  However, my sore muscles this morning told me that a rest day would be the best thing for them.  So I though I would post some motivating images to make up for my non-work out day.

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I decided I’m going to take a long walk after work – just to get the blood flowing!

Happy Motivation Monday!

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Saturday Randomness

1. Today’s Work Out: I was lucky enough to see a friend today that I haven’t seen in a long time.  And you know what I like the most about this friend?  She likes Zumba! (Ok, that is not what I like most, but she does get like 10 extra friend points!)  So instead of meeting up for food or drinks, we did a Zumba class today!  I love Zumba, but haven’t done it much in the last few months.  I really need to get back on that because it works out your entire body!  My head to my feet are sore from the 1 hour class – good news!

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2. Food and Drink:  After class, I continued my love afair with smoothies with another peach strawberry.  I’m working on lunch for the hubs now (Shredded Chicken Salad).  I cooked chicken thighs with Pace salsa in the crockpot last night for about 6 hours.  Then I shredded the chicken (which a spoon becauce I didn’t grab a fork and I’m lazy) and let it cook a little longer.  I warmed up the chicken and put it on a salad of romaine lettuce, added tomatoes and avocado.  YUMMMM!!!  Best lunch!

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3. Yesterday I did about 5.5 miles on the bike (I set it at 4 and kept the speed up).

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Then I did a lot of stretching because I was feeling very tight.  I felt much better afterwards.

4. Last night I did something I don’t normally do – went to a bar to listen to my family sing karaoke!

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That is my dad and my uncle singing at a dive bar in Lakewood.  I had a blast listening to them, talking with my mom and my cousin.  Such fun!

5. Avs are playing today – wish them luck!

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Embarrassing Work Out Moment

I made a training plan after a lot of research to reach my goals.  The training plan started last week and I have been loving it!  Unfortunately I have to suspend one aspect of my training  and change my training plan for a little bit because of one embarrassing moment.

So here is the story:

I haven’t actually been swimming since college.  I have been pricing swimwear, but they are not in stores just yet and I wanted to wait until I could try the suits on.  So when I was to start my swim training, I just grabbed my tankini bathing suit that covered me well and went to the pool.  Before I got into the pool, I noticed that the suit was a little big for me.  I’ll admit I was actually excited about this because that meant I had lost weight since last summer and did a little dance in my head.  I got into the water, put my goggles (that I had just purchased at the front desk) on and started swimming.  It was not pretty swimming, but I was able to go the whole length (25 yards) without stopping.  This was more than I thought I was going to be able to do (another happy dance in my head) and I was trying my hardest not to compare myself to the lifelong swimmers in other lanes.

After a couple of laps I looked down at myself while I took a breather and noticed something…I was not all in my swimming suit!  Yep, I definitely was flashing some boob to the entire pool…including the little old ladies, the 20-something lifeguard, and the old men passing by on their way to the sauna.   I’m sure my entire body turned red as I adjusted myself (as discreetly as possible) and quickly finished my laps – I was not going to let a little embarrasment keep me from my work out!

As soon as I was done, I rushed out of the pool area to the locker room to shower and leave as soon as I could.  I determined that I couldn’t wait for an athletic suit to get into the stores (that I could afford) and vowed to buy one that weekend.

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Speedo Endurance+ onepiece swimsuit!  That will keep the girls in!

Now that I have devulged my most embarrassing moment, I will tell you my modified training plan:

No swimming until I have the suit!!!

I will rotate other workouts until that time occurs and then re-evaluate the plan.

Today’s Workout

15 minutes on the treadmill going 3.8 mi/hr:

2 min @ 2 incline

8 min @ 15 incline

3 min @ 10 incline

2 min @ 5 incline

I could barely walk after that – holy calf workout!

Afterwards I did 10 min of ab work with this:

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It was a short workout today, but I felt it (and I am still feeling it!)

Smoothie of the Day:  Strawberry Kiwi (super tasty!)

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