Sunday, July 31, 2016

Funny Things During a Workout, Carb Cycling Round 2 and GIVEAWAY ALERTS!

I've got some really great giveaway alerts for you at the end of this post that you don't want to miss out on!

But first, I woke up SUPER early this morning (5 AM!) and since I couldn't fall back to sleep I made some coffee to take out on the back deck. It was a nice until it started raining.

mrC did not have the same problem. I had to wake him up for church. We had big plans to walk there (it's only about .25 mile from the house), but the rain... Side note: I love, love my new skirt

After church we decided to do an indoor workout for carb cycling feast day.  I like Jillian Michaels workout videos because she takes you through a dynamic warm up and static cool down.

I'm always looking for new ways to modify cardio exercises to keep my knee happy. JM showed me that squat punches is a great option.

Three funny things commonly happen when I workout with mrC:

1) he closes his eyes during intervals  - I look over during lunges and it looks like he's sleeping!

2) he high fives after each circuit - he's a happy guy ;)

3) when he bangs into something (like today he sort of punched the drop ceiling), he never reacts - I nearly jump out of my skin at the noise, look over, and he's just jumping away. It's like he's trying to say, wasn't me. Haha.

Speaking of carb cycling, today was also the last day of round 2 which means we took measurements. Full disclosure, I was not as faithful to the eating plan as I was during round 1. I could blame all the travel, but it really came down to the fact that I let myself cheat and cheat and cheat.

THE RESULTS: My weight stayed the same but I gained (eek) 4.75 inches!

+.50 bust
+.25 hips
0 waist
+1.5 thighs
+1.5 calves
+1.5 biceps

mrC says gaining in some places (like my biceps) is a good thing. I agree, although half heartedly, because I really wanted to lose another 4 pounds and slim down my hips and thighs.

FINAL THOUGHTS: You get out what you put in. I have signed up for a 30 Day Shred and I'm making a promise to myself to stick to the plan.

The sun came out after lunchtime, so we walked to the beach to enjoy a little sun, sand and waves.  I highly recommend a beach day if you are feeling bummed.

Before I sign off, I want to share links to GIVEAWAYS going on now. There have been so many lately that I couldn't keep them to myself.

Win a Bib to the Falmouth Road Race from Carrots n Cake 

Live Free and Run Giveaway: TWO entries to a ZOOMA Run Event (for you and a friend)

Win a pair of compression socks from The Fit Fork

Lean, Clean, and Brie is hosting a Bob's Red Mill Giveaway

Win IdealFit Protein Powder from The Bikini Experiment

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Sprints and Sprinting to the Cape!

Yesterday I flipped low calorie day with low carb day to make sure we did not miss our sprint workout before heading to the Cape. mrC and I were at the gym at 6:15 to do the final sprint workout of carb cycling round two.

Sprinting for 15 minutes using the 20:20 ratio equals 23 intervals! It's all fun and games when you start, but the last three (extra) are tough.

I spent the rest of the day getting ready for our trip: laundry, prepping kid "care packages" and organizing my suitcase. My SIL's dog has become my little shadow, especially when I'm enjoying some low carb day turkey breast slices.

Our landlord contacted us the night before to let us know the house was ready and invited us to go a day early. We thought, HECK YEA! We can't get there fast enough! When mrC got back from work, we loaded everything into the car and sprinted off.

We enjoyed an easy traffic-free drive. After a quick stop for some dinner, we arrived around 9PM. Waking up in the Cape House (instead of being in the Saturday morning mad dash) was fantabulous.

Here are a few pics to show you why :)

The kids arrive tomorrow (can't wait!), but this little guy must have decided I needed some company.

Happy Saturday!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Backyard Workout and Random Fun Stuff

My body is still working its way through my 12 time zones journey. Today I slept until 7:30 (which never happens!), but I finally felt refreshed when I woke up.

I grabbed some weights, my iPad, and a towel and hit the backyard for my workout.

Today I was feeling spunky, so I choose a Jillian Michael's workout video. It's called an ab workout, but it is really for your whole body. Even she says so. The hardest exercise is a side plank knee twist move. It works the obliques and the inner thighs. My inner thighs need A LOT of work.

My favorite exercise today was a reverse lunge. Normally lunges and squats are uncomfortable for my bad knee, but today they felt ok. I think that doing the workout on grass may have helped.

To cool off after the workout I jumped into the pool again. I've been searching for a new tankini to replace the one I've had for four summers now and yesterday I found one at Dick's Sporting Goods when we were picking up a bike rack for the rental car. It's from Calia by Carrie Underwood and it's super cute. The description fit me perfectly: "Keep it casual and classic this swim season with this flattering design. The CALIA™ by Carrie Underwood Solid Strappy Tankini Top has all of the swim-ready features you need without sacrificing style"

All good workouts should be rewarded, so I helped myself to one of my SIL's gluten free muffins before enjoying some scrambled eggs prepared by mrC.

Other fun moments from the day...

I voted absentee in the primary!

I picked up some gifts at Giftology while mrC was at Verizon.

And then I booked my tickets to Orlando and Cincinnati! I can't wait to see my parents and more of my family.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Get After It

Feast day is a fun day...for eating.

The feast day workout is not my favorite. It consists of an arm circuit and a leg circuit. The arm circuit is hard 10 sets of 10 pushups, plank pushups, and tricep dips. I can do all the tricep dips, but I have to modify the other two. I usually do 5 sets of 10 and then 5 sets of 5. I do what I can to get through it.

The leg circuit is easier, but my knee is not a fan. There are lots of squats and lunges. I power through as much as I can and modify where necessary.

Feast day means I can eat all the fruit and knowing that helps get me through the feast day workout. I'm taking full advantage of my sister-in-law's Ninja blender and enjoying the new Bob's Red Mill protein powder. I named today's recipe Bob's Protein Berry Smoothie.

We store our bikes in my SIL's garage, so while mrC was at work I took a two mile ride down the road to Wilbraham Monson Academy campus. It was a really nice ride, even on a warm summer day, and I ran into my nephew who is working on campus this summer.

The ride back was much harder mostly because it was uphill, but I'm pretty sure I stink at putting air in the tires, too. The thought of jumping in the swimming pool was enough to keep me going.

PS - I'm loving my new bikini!

After a refreshing dip in the pool, I made myself some lunch. I've been using the dairy free cheese that I picked up recently and honestly, I'm undecided. I have cut back my cheese consumption while on the carb cycling program and feel pretty good as a result which is what made me try this. 

And then I ate all the gluten free cheese pizza at dinner. 

What's your least favorite workout?
What gets you through a tough workout?
Have you tried dairy free cheese? 

Monday, July 25, 2016

Weekend in Newport

Just like our weekend in Newport, I am stuffing as much as I can into this blog post. There's just so much to do and too little time.

We always make a point to visit our favorite diner while we are in town. It's a small place right outside the naval base gate and since we stay on base it is super convenient. They have a great menu, great prices, and great service. 

We met up with my father-in-law and brother-in-law at the marina after breakfast on Saturday for some sailing. It was a picture perfect day for sailing and being on the water is so relaxing.

The Deck at the O'Club is one of our favorite places to eat when we don't want to go to downtown Newport because it has an amazing view and a great menu. In the summer it's even better with live music. Since our last visit, they have expanded the deck to make it even bigger. More room for people to eat and watch sunsets!

We walked to the fitness center on base to do our full body workout on Sunday morning. This center opened about three years ago, but this was our first time going inside. It is AMAZING! The machines are all high-tech. I even emailed my warmup summary to myself from the treadmill. At the end we used the blood pressure unit. 

After a little shopping at the Navy Exchange, we drove to the Cliff Walk. It had been awhile since we had been there, so we had some fun while we explored the trail.  

The Forty Steps is a popular place to get a closer view of the cliff side and ocean. Brave souls even climb on the rocks to enjoy swimming or just relax and enjoy the view.

There are many places along the Cliff Walk where you can walk and/or climb a little to get a better view and even dip your toes in the water. We weren't shy about venturing out and enjoying some of those places. 

Back in town, mrC scored a prime parking spot downtown, so we headed to The Red Parrot for lunch. We always have a good meal here and this time we even got a coveted seat at the window looking right out onto lower Thames Street, home to Newport's thriving atmosphere.

One thing I really enjoy about downtown Newport is that you never know what you're are going to see, but it is usually amusing. We loved the look of this cool dog!

That's a wrap on our weekend in Newport. We are hoping to make it back once more before our return to China, but it will just depend on the timing of things.

Ever spent time in Newport, RI?
Favorite summertime place?
Funniest thing you've seen recently?

Friday, July 22, 2016

Friday Favorites: USA Edition

After a long day of travel, we arrived in the USA late Tuesday night. The first couple days of our return always seem a little crazy with that running on fumes feeling. It's totally worth it though. We are visiting mrC's family (crashing at my sister-in-law's house) until we go to the Cape for a family vacation and this weekend we headed to Newport.

Today I'm sharing some of my favorite things about being back in the USA.

Hanging out with LittleC. She drove in from Boston to hang out with us on her day off. It was short and sweet, but we will have her for two weeks on the Cape soon. (what I'm wearing: tank and shorts)

Roaming around the grocery to see what new things are on the shelves is super fun. We discovered some dairy free cheese that I've been wanting to try. It smelled terrible to me when I opened the package, but it tasted just like regular cheese sprinkled on my salad.

Easy to make smoothies. I make smoothies all the time in China, but nothing compares to a Ninja blender. I was also excited to use more of the new line of Bob's Red Mill protein powders. It was really good.

My sister-in-law has a pool and even though I didn't swim (just got my hair cut and colored), I love just hanging out with my feet in the water while everyone else takes a dip.

Morning workouts outside. I've been missing this a lot lately. It's just too hot in China to do outdoor workouts. This morning I fired up the iPad and did a Fitness Blender video right there on my SIL's patio. It was awesome!

Newport. One of my favorite places. It's where we got married. I love coming back here. Today we went back to City Hall to get a certified copy of our marriage certificate for our Hong Kong resident permit applications.

We ended the day on sunset watch at Castle Hill. Some much to love here: cocktails, Adirondacks, and gorgeous views. I appropraitely wore my pineapple tank since I'm in the city of hospitality. Shop my look here, here, and here.

Our weekend plans include sailing and bike riding. We shall see!

Dairy free products: yay or nay?
Can you do outdoor workouts where you live?
Does your city have an official symbol?