Monday, June 5, 2017

Run, HIIT, Run

My morning workout was tough.

Whether it was the 85 degrees or the fact that I tried a juice cleanse for the first time yesterday, I don't know. It was hard, but I got through it.

Week 2 - Low Carb day 1 - the workout

Shoes, shorts, tank, water bottle

Run - Last week I did the 7 Up 7 Down speed bursts, but I don't think my knee liked it very much. Today I choose to modify the sprint workout to do my intervals: run/walk. Really I just ran until there was a steep downhill, then I walked. I ran about a mile to a spot to do the next part of the workout.

HIIT - This body weight circuit was the same as last week, but it felt harder. I'm guessing part of that was because I was doing it outside in the heat. It just seemed silly to go into the fitness center when I didn't need any of the machines. It was a struggle to get through just about every exercise and I only did 2 out of 3 rounds again.

Run - After a quick bathroom break, I ran a mile back to the apartment. It was hard. I didn't even run up the big hill and it was still hard. There were a lot of walk breaks in that mile, but it felt so good to finish.

Low Carb day - the meals

Broke fast at 11:00 - 3 scrambled eggs and pb&j rice cake

Lunch - 4 turkey rollups ---> could have eaten more calories here, but wasn't hungry

Dinner - Italian chicken breast, green beans, and salad

Snack - 2 pb&j rice cakes

I'm still struggling to eat all the calories on low carb days. I honestly thought I would be ravenous today after doing the juice cleanse yesterday, but I wasn't. I didn't even wake up hungry. Today I had over 700 calories leftover. My coach says I will gradually start eating more food, so I will trust the process.

Do you eat more or less when you are following a training plan?

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Weekly Wrap - A Fitness Plan

FASTer Way To Fat Loss week one kicked off and kicked my butt. It was awesome!

I'm a sucker for a schedule, a routine, a plan. Maybe it's the former teacher in me, but I just like to know where I'm going and what I'm doing when I have a goal. I think that is why I like the carb cycling programs so much. The plan is designed for people like me who want to lose fat and gain strength. People who already work out, but need to shake things up a bit to move past a plateau.

I like following the plan. For me, there is a great mix between running, HIIT, strength, and recovery.

Here's what week 1 looked like:

Monday - Speed burst and HIIT

Tuesday - Speed burst and LISS

Wednesday - Strength training

Thursday - More strength training

Friday - Active recovery yoga

Saturday - Strength training - leg day!

Sunday - I tried a juice cleanse

Do you follow a training plan or prefer to be spontaneous with your workouts?

Linking up with Tricia and Holly for the Weekly Wrap!

I Tried a Juice Cleanse and This Is What Happened

I like food. I also like carb cycling. The fasting part of the FASTer Way To Fat Loss®️ program has always been the hard part for me, but since it is a key component (it's when your body reaches into its fat stores) I always give my best effort. I've read that a juice cleanse is an effective way to extend your fasting window (because your body stays in digestive rest), so I thought this would be my ticket to a successful fast.

We ended up at Nood, a juicery right off the Mid-Levels escalator in Central. With the help of Justin, we were able to put together a one-day cleanse and purchase from the ready made stock in the shop.

This is what happened when I tried a one day juice cleanse:

6:30 - wake up and drink my usual bottle of water. No coffee on cleanse day. I have 6 bottles to drink throughout the day, so I wait to start so that the last bottle will be due at 7PM, the end of my eating window on a normal day.

8:00 - drink another bottle of water as prep for the first juice bottle. I will continue to do this every hour between bottles.

9:00 - Bottle #1. Hydrating and anti-inflammatory effects to start the day. I was terrified that it would taste disgusting, but it wasn't bad. It was a sweet lemonade flavor and easy to drink. The fun part was the slight sting left on my lips like when I eat spicy food.

11:00 - Bottle #2 - Even better than the first and I was eager to drink it because I was feeling hungry and sleepy.  According to Nood, this was a little bottle of energy. It reminded me of the lemon grass tea mrC and I had at the spa on our trip to Phuket.

1:00 - Bottle #3. EWWW! This bottle aims to balance fruits and greens, but all I could taste was cucumber and I am not a fan. This was not easy to drink, but the ingredients make it good for post workout recovery and fighting inflammation.

3:00 - Bottle #4. Ewww again, although not as bad as bottle 3. This was another balance of fruits and greens. It looked like it would taste good (the color fooled me), but between the beetroot and cucumber, it was hard to finish.

4:00 - All I could think about was solid food. My energy was super low. I was sleepy and napping off and on. I'm pretty sure I was on a carb overdose. I broke my fast with some left-over buffalo chicken quinoa and a rice cake.

I wouldn't say I failed the juice cleanse completely because I did extend my fast and that was the point.

mrC convinced me to go for a walk and stretch our sore legs from yesterday's strength training session. Even though I got bit by a mosquito in about 30 seconds and it was warm, I'm glad I put on my comfy walking sandals and got some air.

Have you ever done a cleanse?

Friday, June 2, 2017

Recovery Yoga and A Little Fashion Friday

My muscles must be growing because they're sore. At least that is what I told myself all day.

Enter yoga.

I swear every pose in flow yoga stretches something good. The best yoga videos are from Yoga with Adriene. If you do yoga and don't know her or are thinking about starting yoga, Google her.

After my second day of strength training, my arms and shoulders were really tight. By the time I finished the yoga video I was already feeling better. It's a perfect active recovery workout for low calorie days, too. Win, win.

Afterwards, we grabbed our passports and crossed the border for some shopping at Luohu Commercial City in Shenzhen. A friend referred me to a tailor who is making me copies of my favorite dress. The fun part was searching for the right fabric in the fabric market.

Speaking of fashion, I thought I'd share some of my recent favorite finds. Some are fitness gear, some are affiliate links (meaning I make a few cents if you click and/or make a purchase - no obligation!), and some are on my wish list.

Picked up this dress at J.Crew (can't wait to wear it at the Cape), a couple of these super soft drapey tanks (on the hanger in the photo below) and put this tank on my wishlist (it's just so tropical).

And I think these espadrille slip-ons would be perfect with the dress or just about anything this summer.

I took mrC to Lululemon. One pair of workout shorts wasn't enough anymore. While he was shopping, I found this long sleeve top on sale for myself and picked up this new sports bra.

Low Calorie Day - the meals

Lunch - broke my fast around 11:30 at the Lee Yuen Restaurant. BBQ pork, fried rice, sweet & sour chicken and dim sum (for mrC).

Dinner - leftover quinoa and tuna

Snack - 4 turkey rollups

My macros were pretty good for the day, but I was hungry. I need to eat more fiber to feel full on low calorie days.

How often do you yoga?
Do you have a favorite clothing item you would copy?
Can you eat with chopsticks?

PS - I'm linking up with Nicole for the Fit & Fashionable Friday link-up 

Thursday, June 1, 2017

May Miles and More Strength Training

It's funny how fast time can fly sometimes. The week, the month, the year! It's hard to believe it's already time to add up the miles for the month of May.

I'm still amazed at the number of miles I have been putting on my Mizunos considering I was almost certain my running days were over when my old, cranky knee got even crankier last year. The month of May was good to me: 7 runs (I usually go twice a week) and 23.16 miles. This is a little less than April, but at least I can blame the weather and not an injury. My runs got shorter as the days got warmer.

Heading into June, I'm not sure what my goal is for running while I'm carb cycling. There will be some sprints and hopefully I'll figure out where to work in at least one moderate run each week.

Regular Calorie Day 2 - the workout

We joined the fitness center last November when we moved to Discovery Bay, but have really only used the treadmill and elliptical. It's been one part fun and one part frustration trying to find the machines we need to use for strength workouts. Plus it gets crowded after school drop off time and I prefer working out before the rush (hint, hint ;) mrC). 

Warm up - walked to the fitness center

Strength -  Today was all about the upper body and mostly arms. My shoulder still bothers me a little on some of the exercises (reverse fly) and I discovered that I'm between 5 and 10 or 10 and 15 pounds on many of the exercises ---> what's wrong with having an 8 or 12 pound dumbbell lying around? My solution was to go heavier on the first set and lighter on the second and hope I could finish. It wasn't always pretty, but I did it. Except the pulls-up. I didn't even try those. I need the assisted pull-up machine for that and we don't have one.

Cool down - walked back to the apartment

Regular Calorie Day 2 - the meals

Broke fast at 11:30 - Bob's Red Mill pancakes and scrambled eggs with ham

Lunch - 4 turkey rollups and red grapes

Dinner - quinoa and tuna

Snack - gluten free brownie

My goal for the week has been to hit my macros and I was so excited by how well I did today keeping my fats down. I still have some work to do, but using My Fitness Pal to track what I eat makes it so easy.

How many miles did you run in May?
Do you prefer having the gym to yourself or working out with a crowd?
Do you track your macros/calories/food at all?