Thursday, January 31, 2013

February 2013 Goals

January is over.  Can you believe it?  That month flew by.  I still have so many things I need to do to make 2013 great...plan a vacation, plan a 60th birthday party for my dad, organize my finances...but I will get around to those later.  First, some fitness goals for February.  Not going to lie...I am a little ambitious this month.

1. Run 70 miles. 

I succesfully ran 66 (plus some change) in January, so it is time to up the goal to prepare for my upcoming half marathon.  I'm hoping the weather will warm up in February so I can run outside all the time.  Cold weather is not an excuse.

January Success with my Garmin

2. Do yoga or extra stretching for 60 minutes each week.

This is a repeat goal from January.  I did do yoga a total of 5 times last month, but I think I missed a week and it wasn't always 60 minutes.  So this month I'm going to keep closer track for fitting-it-all-in's "Flexible February" challenge. Stretching is going to be extra imporatant with the added miles.

3. Complete a plank a day 5 times a week.

Here is another February challenge-inspired goal hosted by ericadhouse. This is also to compliment runlikeagrl's "Abs By April" challenge that I began participating in (currently on week 2). Improving core strength will help with running and these challenges keep me motivated.

4. Complete 3 fitmixer workouts per week.

fitmixer boot camp sends workouts 5 days a week.  I have yet to complete 5 workouts in a week.  As you can see from the above goals, I have a lot of fitness interests (running, yoga, planking...wait is planking considered an interest?) and I don't want to completely burn myself out and have no social life.  But for February, I am requiring myself to do at least 3 fitmixer workouts per week because they are great strength training.  The good news is they count for stretching and planking a lot of times.

5. Eat 3 servings of vegetables a day.

This one is pretty simple.  I think I do this already, but sometimes it seems that all the snacks I take to work are fruit and the smoothies I make are all fruit.  To battle the fruit overload temptation I will count my daily veggies.

What are your February goals?  How many vegeatables do you eat a day?  Do you follow any online challenges?  Check out my challenge progress on twitter (@Julie13point1).

Monday, January 28, 2013

New Moves

Today I realized I'm getting more out of fitmixer boot camp than I first thought.  When the bootcamp started, I was following along with the daily workouts, trying the products, and sometimes tracking my calories on myfitnesspal.  Nothing seemed new or shocking to my body.  The workouts were a compilation of moves I was mostly familiar with (although it was nice not to have to plan a workout myself).  The products were good (although I'm not sold on supplements just yet).  And the calorie counting was enlightening (but this was not my first time).

All of my doubts changed today when I did the "Evolution" workout (Day 15).  The theory behind this workout targeted 4 different muscle groups.  Each muscle group had a set of 3-5 exercises.  The first set was always a simple form of the exercise (ie. wall sit).  Each additional set added on a variation to make the exercise a little harder (ie. keeps your heels off the ground or lift one leg up).  I was able to do these more advanced moves that I wouldn't have been able to dive right into by itself.

My favorite move of the night was the one-legged deadlift.  It was so challenging and I could feel my muscles burning.  It was amazing!  Plus it incorporated a lot of balance which I know is strengthening my joints/smaller muscles for running.

After realizing my body was being challenged, I thought of other things I've learned from fitmixer bootcamp.  I learned how to do the Running Man (yes, think 80s dance).  I probably look ridiculous when I try, but this move was a fun way to fit cardio into an at-home workout. I've also grown to love the fitmixer aminos.  I'm giving up soda this year and the extra energy supplements in the aminos gets me going in the morning when I'm dragging.  I also have learned a lot about balancing proteins, carbs, and fats.  I'm really focusing on increasing my protein intake so my body can recover and be more energized.

I wish I had moves like Will

Week 2 of boot camp was a big success.  I haven't seen a lot of physical results yet, but I've noticed my running is improving and I'm out of my exercise rut.  I've gone to work with sore calves, arms, glutes, it must be working!  What is a new move you have learned this month?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Goals & Progress

January is nearly over, so I have been reflecting on my goals this week.  For the new year 2013, it was hard for me to think of 'resolutions' that would last me all year.  Instead I resolved to make monthly goals that will measure my fitness progress as well as life growth.  Here is a list of my January goals:

1. Run 65 miles by the end of the month.

To train for my half marathon, I want to increase my mileage. I am trying to do so gradually.  So far, I've been adding about 5 miles per month to my monthly total. As of today I've run 48 miles, so I am on track to hit 65!

2. Do yoga or extra stretching for 60 minutes each week.

Last summer when I was doing yoga consistently for a month at Yoga Tree, I saw improvement in my running performance.  Daniel has been focused on injury prevention for the past few months, so this was a great opportunity to introduce him to yoga and help myself.  So far I have stayed consistent with this by doing Tara Stiles DVDs and fitmixer boot camp has been great at providing daily warm-ups and cool-downs that emphasize stretching and recovery.

3. Run the Resolution Run 10k in under an hour.

Drumroll please!  As promised in the last post, my race results.  Chip time - 58:16.  The race began at Stonebridge Beach Club in McKinney and the first half of the race was uphill.  This course was tougher than I remember.  I did the same course last May and my time was 1:06:52.  I improved my time by over 8 minutes in 8 months.  I was so excited and proud of myself.  I even got a medal in my age group.  This is a first for me!  *Disclaimer: it was a small race*

Gold medal, baby!

As for the rest of 2013, my major goals/plans are to run 2 half marathons and eliminate my need for soda (this goal is coming along nicely).  Coming soon, I need to work on my February goals.  Do any of you regularly set monthly goals?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Fitmixer Bootcamp Week 1

January 14 started the beginning of the Fitmixer boot camp that I won a spot in thanks to Running with Sass.  Fitmixer is sending me a personalized diet plan (1400 calories/day) and emailing me a daily workout (5 days a week).  Also, I get to try their great line of products - Sculpt, Skinny (both protein powders), and aminos (basically an energy/vitamin drink). I will periodically post my thoughts on the program.

My sister was still in town Monday, so I'm one day behind on workouts (we went rock climbing instead), but I was anxious to try all of the products I had received.  For an afternoon snack I tried the vanilla 'Sculpt' protein.  It had a slightly strange taste, so I want to experiment with the amount of water I added.  A few members said ice helps a lot or mixing in a few pieces of fruit.  It's been a hectic week, so I haven't tried it again.

My breakfast on Tuesday was a chocolate 'Skinny' protein shake.  This was tasty and kept me feeling more full than my normal breakfast.  The first workout was a fitness test.  I did 3 sets of the following.  Each exercise was how many reps in 1 minute or how long can you hold.  I torqued my knee a bit on the first set so I rested a good amount between sets and iced my knee when I was done.

1. Burpees - 18, 16, 18
2. Supermans - 30, 29, 30
3. Plyometic Lunges - 38, 42, 38
4. Tricep Push-ups - 24, 19, 19
5. Hover - 62s, 58s, 59s
6. Chest Push-ups - 21, 20, 18
7. Wall Sit - 60s, 60s, 57s
8. High Knee Runs (per leg) - 76, 74, 78
9. Jumping Jacks - 68, 67, 68
10. Side Hover Dips (per side) - 25, 25, 28

After this test, I knew where to focus my energy during this boot camp (arms and core!).

Wednesday I was sore...this is working! I actually did a lot better with the diet plan because I had time to go to the grocery store.  I ate lots of fruits (nectarines, clementines, grapes, banana), almonds, and whole grains.  I barely felt hungry.  I do know I need to add in more vegetables.  The workout was some isometric strength moves which I enjoyed.  I also fit in a 4 mile run with pickups to prepare for my 10k race this weekend.

Today was a tabata day.  We did 8 rounds of each exercise and by halfway through each round my body was screaming.  There were a total of 5 different exercise.  I was thankful this was over quickly.  My run today was quick too. 2.5 miles at 9:30 pace (that's my goal pace for Saturday).

I stil have some work to do during this 2 month boot camp.  Like they say, "Change is Uncomfortable" but it's worth it!  My race this Saturday is called the Resolution Run.  Perhaps after the race, I will finally get around to posting my 2013 resolutions. 
Upcoming 10k Goal: Finish under 60 mins.