Saturday, November 30, 2013

Staying Motivated During Holidays

Things get busy as soon as December hits.  To stay motivated, schedule in your workouts.  Things can always get in the way, if you don't make exercise a priority.

For me, the hard part will be all of the treats that will start arriving at our door.  I am going to make sugar cookies again next week and probably cookies & cream popcorn, but after that I am not planning on baking for the rest of the month.  My birthday is this week, but I had enough treats, I don't want any right now.

I didn't do any Black Friday shopping.  I slept instead.  I did find some deals online.  Cyber Monday will be when I finish most of my shopping for Christmas.  I like getting presents for people especially when they don't expect it. Surprises are fun!

Milk Chocolate LINDOR Truffles 75-pc Bag
Lindt chocolates
The gym was nice and quiet today.  Some days it is so busy, the machines I want to use, that I get annoyed.  Today was not that way.  Which was great because I was low on sleep last night, it would have made me grouchy. My husband and I went to Costco and they were handing out chocolate samples, good chocolate.  What a nice treat!

10 minutes--AMT--warm-up
20 minutes--lifting--leg extension, hamstring curl, alt. lunges, abs
41 minutes--treadmill--5.2 miles @ 0.5 incline

Friday, November 29, 2013


I think I ate too much.  My gut is not happy with me today.  Next year, I think I will add more color to the meal.  The traditional food is just a lot of bread and starch and brown.  It tasted good, but my body does not like it.  Fruit and eggs and meat and veggies today.  It will probably take 3 days to feel normal again.

We hit the gym yesterday and this morning. I felt good yesterday. Today, not so much. Food really affects my energy levels.

Thankful for the family I have been a part of all my life and the one I gained when I married my husband.  Thankful for kids that keep me on my toes and give love freely.  Thankful for a strong body that helps me do things I want to do.  Thankful for the peace I have in my home because we know and love our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Treadmill--5 miles @ 1.0 incline

36 minutes--AMT--16/18 Interval
16 minutes--treadmill--2 miles @ 1.0 incline

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Lead By Example

I had a gym friend tell me they were going to do whatever I did today. Actually, he just did the AMT for as long as I did it. That is where it starts. Do what you can at whatever level you're at. He had been telling me that he needed to do cardio, but he only ever lifted weights. This week, he started adding cardio and he signed up for classes. This guy is 60+ and isn't in bad shape, but he wants to lose his gut. I hope he sticks with it.

The trainer asked me if I was going to pig out tomorrow.  I am not planning on it. I will have some of everything, but I don't want to come home feeling ill. If there is a sour cream lemon pie, I might take it to the car.

10 minutes--warm-up-- high knees, fast squats, push-ups
40 minutes--lifting--legs, gluteus

  • Squats with kettle bell 
  • 50 lb. easy bar squats
  • 35 lb. sumo squat
  • Jump squat w/ 6 lb. medicine ball overhead 
  • PliĆ© squat 
  • Reverse squat
  • Deep squat
35 minutes--AMT--16/18 interval
7:35 minutes--treadmill--1 mile


The day I delivered my first baby, I weighed 235.

5 months later, I still weighed over 200.

2 years later, started running, I was 180.

I finally started exercising in a gym and eating better-- 162.

2 more babies--196 at delivery then down to 158.

Running, lifting, cleanse down to 151.

Increased weightlifting, ran faster--147.

It took 4 years for me to decide that my happiness was worth the effort.  I am so grateful that I was able to spend time on me and reach some fitness goals.  Weight doesn't matter so much now.  But I remember when it did. Work hard, be consistent, changes will come.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Kneader's Sugar Cookies

I first saw this recipe on HungryRunnerGirl. She says it is her most favorite sugar cookie.  I am kind of a snob when it comes to sugar cookies, but I knew Kneader's has a good reputation, so I made them.

Taste test results.  The cookies are great.  The recipe I normally use has to be chilled at least 3 hours.  I usually chill them overnight. So these work for me because they are faster and even softer than my traditional recipe. The frosting was not a hit with anyone.  I made a batch of my own vanilla buttercream recipe (at bottom).

So here is the recipe.  Icing at your own risk.

Kneaders Sugar Cookies found here
adapted by From Cupboard to Cupboard

2 cups butter
2 ¼ cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup milk
7 ¾ cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp lemon flavor ( I used 1/4 tsp lemon extract)
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp nutmeg
1 Tbsp honey

1. Cream together butter and sugar until fluffy.
2. Add eggs, then milk.  Scrape the sides of the bowl often.
3. Stir in remaining ingredients.  Dough will be soft and sticky.
4. Place dough on well floured pastry cloth or workspace.
5. Knead in just enough flour to make dough workable.  Dough will be very soft.  It is best to knead with a rolling motion so you have a smooth surface and you will not get cracks on the tops of your cookies.
6. Gently roll out to 3/8 inch thick.
7. Cut into desired shapes and place on baking sheet lined with parchment.
8. Bake at 325 for 10-12 minutes (12 minutes was perfect for me) or until just the edges barely start to change colors. Makes approx. 4 dozen.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
3/4 c. butter
3 1/4 powdered sugar
2 T. milk
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla

Refueling the Wrong Way

After  the gym today, all I wanted to eat was white bread toast with butter. So I did.  I know, it's not healthy, but it tastes good every once in a while.

McKenzieFrmsNat copy
Franz Bakery

I got asked to make sugar cookies for Thanksgiving.  The kids will get to decorate their own cookies for dessert.  I have a go to sugar cookie recipe, but I am going to try a new one.  If it disappoints, I won't post it.  If it is great, I will post it for sure.

10 minutes--AMT--warm-up
40 minutes--lifting
  • assisted pull-ups
  • captain's chair leg lift (abs)
  • 20 lb. single arm snatch
  • lateral raise
  • single arm shoulder press
  • kettlebell swing--single arm and double
  • plank with shoulder taps
27:30 minutes--treadmill--3 miles easy with 1.0 incline


Monday, November 25, 2013

Sometimes Church Is Awesome!

It seems like every time we are about to go to church the little guy starts to throw a fit. Yesterday was as bad as it has ever been.  Just when you think you want to find some duct tape, the most awesome thing comes screaming out of his mouth.

"I got to go poop!"

Not once or twice, but like 10 times!  He is still in diapers and has only used the potty a few times.  Yes, church is awesome...awesomely embarrassing!


20 minutes--AMT--16/18 Interval
10 minutes--lat. pulls, rows
10 minutes--single-legged jumping, side to side and back and forth
                  --one-legged squats
40 minutes--treadmill--Fartlek sprints (4.5 miles)
15 minutes--stretch

Things You Might Not Know--Growing Up

Starting way back in Kindergarten.

  • I wanted to be a professional basketball player or a brain surgeon.
  • I used to take requests on the bus and sing the whole way home.
  • I used to wear my church shoes to school and kick boys in the shins when they bugged me.

1st-2nd grade
  • Played soccer with the boys almost every recess.

In 3rd-4th grade
  • I wore hot pink spandex capris my mom sewed for me and loved them.
  • Obsessed with Debbie Gibson and NKOTB.
  • Loved 4 square.

5th-6th grade
  • Got 2nd place in the Spelling Bee. Missed word--committee.
  • Cried when this boy I didn't like hugged me on the playground.  I had to go to the principal's office and face the hugger.

7th-8th grade
  • Won the Spelling Bee. Redemption.
  • Mickey Mouse obsessed. Watches, clothes, drawing him on my book covers.
  • Basketball MVP. These 2 guys called me "Baby Shaq."
  • Helped get caged pop machines so we could buy pop at lunchtime. ASB Pres.

High School
  • Loved Basketball.
  • Played recorder with my nose for team talent show.
  • Almost failed my driving test.
  • Toilet papered my husband's car when he had out of town football games.
  • Put $80 worth of pennies into our class jar so we could win 1 competition for homecoming.
  • Worked on a farm, at an RV park, and a soil lab.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Cookies & Cream Popcorn

Super easy and fast.  Give to neighbors for the holidays.  Tastes great!

Cookies & Cream Popcorn
1/2 c. popcorn
1 lb. vanilla melties or white chocolate chips
1 ream of Oreos (15 cookies)
dash of salt
Pop popcorn and separate unpopped kernals.

Crush Oreos with cup or rolling pin.
I like to crush each cookie on one side, then flip it over and crush again.
That way the chunks are still large and not too powdery.

Melt chocolate in microwave--2 min. at 70% or use double boiler. Pour chocolate over popcorn, add salt and large crushed Oreos. Stir till coated.

 Pour on greased pan or wax paper to cool.
*This is one of my favorites to receive or take to gatherings. Everyone I have given it to has loved it.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Too Cold

It was 12 degrees at 8 am.  I checked the weather again and the high at 10 am was supposed tbe be 24 degrees. So I skipped the race.  Not sad about it at all.  But I do want to do a race.  I think 32 degrees is the threshold for coldness.

My husband and I went to the gym instead.  It was pretty empty which is nice when you want to lift weights.  I did a short ARMS workout and then ran a 5K.

The goal was sub 24. I ran 23:40.  Not bad.

I started my Christmas shopping online last night.  I am not sure if I want to go out on Black Friday.  I do want to get the $500 gift card from Sports Authority. I probably have to get up a 3 am to have a chance at any gift card.  I have been waking up at that time anyway.  I haven't looked for any deals yet.
What deals are you looking for on Black Friday?

Friday, November 22, 2013

Iron Rhino

I saw this on Facebook. IRON RHINO click this link for video demos.
The hardest part was the Burpees.  I did 50 and then I was done.

50 jump rope or high knees
20 squats
50 jump rope or high knees
20 push-ups
50 jump rope or high knees
20 V sit-ups (alt. legs)

Circuit 1
200 deep body weight squats (100-150 for beginners)

Circuit 2--3 rounds of 50 reps
50 crunches
50 sec plank
50 shoulder press w/ 10# weights (I did 6 # for the last 2 rounds)

Circuit 3--Do as many cycles as you can in 1minute, Repeat 4x, with 30 second rest between round
10 Mountain climbers
10 Speed skaters
10 Uchi Mata push-up

Circuit 4--Timed Challenge
100 Burpees w/o push-up

300 abs--I just did several different ab moves up to 300 total

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Today's Run

I felt great today while I was running, despite being woken up 3 times in the night and "getting up" at 5:30.

I have decided to not lift for the next few days, so I don't aggravate my hip or calves. Now that I have no pain, I realize how uncomfortable I felt.

I checked the weather for the JingleBellRun. It starts at 9:50, so there might be time for it to reach 32 degrees before we run.  BRRRR. But, it's a 5K so at least it's short.

This is a costume optional run.  I don't have any Christmas clothing and I probably won't go buy any.  And my husband won't want to be seen with me if I am costumed.  Maybe next time.


15 minutes--AMT--warm-up
5 minutes--one-legged squats
Mile 1: 8:34
Mile 2: 8:00
Mile 3:8:00
Mile 4: 7:28

Running Shoe Deal Sites

I recommend getting "fitted" at a store when you first choose a running shoe.  Once you know what you like, don't pay full price.  Here is a list of deal site that I always check before I buy full price. The great deals are usually on last year's model.

Running Warehouse
 PureFlow2's for $69.93 instead of $100

Awesome deal on Glycerin 10

Men's & Women's  Running, Walking & Jogging Shoes and Clothing at Road Runner Sports w/ Free Shipping!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Making Me Happy Today!

This Chapstick. 

candy cane chapstick

Remember when a little pot of Carmex was cool.  That stuff did not smell good, but it worked.

I gave in and went to the Chiropractor after giving my foot an ice bath. He adjusted my foot and my hip. Then he massaged the knot out of my calf. Ouch!

Ran without pain for a good 7 miles. 

One-legged hamstring curls, leg extension, leg press. The chiropractor told me to strengthen my left side, so I did.

Saw this bumper sticker on my way home.
(2x) got bon jovi? Sticker Die Cut Decal vinyl

You can have one too!

What's making you happy today?
10 minutes--AMT--warm-up
28 minutes--treadmill--3 miles
15 minutes--left leg lifting
36 minutes--treadmill--4 miles

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Running Tips

These are from 101 Tips for Runners. I just picked a few that I really like.

Be a minuteman "The biggest mistake that new runners make is that they tend to think in mile increments-1 mile, 2 miles, 3 miles. Beginning runners need to think in minutes, not miles." -Budd Coates, four-time U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier/coach
Relax to the max "When running, let your jaw hang loose, don't bunch up your shoulders close to your ears, and occasionally shake out your hands and arms to stay relaxed." -Dave Martin, Ph.D., exercise physiologist
Come ready to play "Fitness has to be fun. If it isn't, there will be no fitness. Play is the process. Fitness is merely the product." -Dr. George Sheehan
Make time for a quickie "If 15 minutes is all the time I have, I still run. Fifteen minutes of running is better than not running at all." -Dr. Duncan Macdonald, former U.S. record holder at 5000 (set when he was in medical school)
Go for the goal "I believe in using races as motivators. It's hard to keep on an exercise program if you don't have a significant goal in sight." -Bob Greene, personal trainer of Oprah Winfrey
Go steady "Day to day consistency is more important than big mileage. Then you're never shot the next day." -John Campbell, former masters running star from New Zealand
Have fun on your easy runs "I make sure I have some really enjoyable training runs, remembering to 'smell the roses' along the way. That way I don't become caught up in the training-is-everything syndrome." -Sue Stricklin, top masters runner from the 1970s
Don't always watch the watch "I don't wear a watch during my long runs. That way I'm not tempted to compare my time from week to week." -Lynn Jennings, three-time World Cross-Country champion
Get over it "If you have a bad workout or run a bad race, allow yourself exactly 1 hour to stew about it-then move on." -Steve Scott, coach and U.S. record holder in the mile
Be vigilant "During the hard training phase, never be afraid to take a day off. If your legs are feeling unduly stiff and sore, rest. If you're at all sluggish, rest. Whenever you're in doubt, rest." -Bruce Fordyce, nine-time Comrades Marathon champion from South Africa
But do what you must do "If one can stick to training throughout many long years, then willpower is no longer a problem. It's raining? That doesn't matter. I'm tired? That's beside the point. It's simply that I have to." -Emil Zatopek 


Our 5 year old daughter likes to come into the bedroom at night. She isn't awake and says some funny things.

"I had that cheesy thing. The cheese on cheese. The chunk of cheese that you cut. You know that thing?"

"I gotta spin my wheels."

"I had to come in.  I had a dream and then it was on a commercial so I had to come in."

If I am going to be woken up in the middle of the night, at least it is entertaining.

My leg still hurts. I iced and I super stretched today and I didn't run. When I got home from the gym, I grabbed a drumstick (from RockBand) and used it to massage my leg--inner thigh and calf.  It worked, but it killed. I put my heel on the back of the couch and stretched my hamstring.  That really felt good when I was done.  More ice and stretching throughout the day. And maybe a hot bath.

Family Fitness

When we are all together in the evening we sometimes do family workouts.  Not really a workout, but get the kids moving. It doesn't happen that often, but it is fun.

They like to do PUSH-UPS


DOWN-UPS--We tried burpees, but they were too hard. So now they lay on the ground, get up, and jump.

RUN AROUND THE ISLAND--the 3 kids follow the leader around the kitchen.

Starting them young


20 minutes--foam roller and stretch
35 minutes--AMT--16/18 Interval
15 minutes--foam roller and stretch

Monday, November 18, 2013

Early Wakeup and a Workout

 I woke up at 5 this morning for no reason.  The little man woke up at 5:30 and we watched Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas together.  I LOVE that movie.  It makes me smile that he likes it too.

After cleaning up the kitchen, I headed to the gym.  The schedule was 3 miles, but that never seems like enough. I really had to stretch my calves so I could run.  I will be icing again tonight.  The goal for this week--Remember to Stretch.

10 minutes--AMT--warm-up
24 minutes--treadmill--3 miles
30 minutes--shoulders, biceps
  • Standing bicep curl to overhead press
  • Shoulder press
  • Front raise
  • Lateral raise
  • Outer bicep curl
7:45--treadmill--1 mile
7:15--treadmill--1 miles
10 minutes--stretch

UPDATE: The guy who passed out at the gym returned today.  I watched him out of the corner of my eye for a few seconds, but didn't talk to him.  He must be okay.

What are your plans for Thanksgiving? Any Turkey Trots?

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Sleepless Saturday

Not sleeping really messes with you. I had only been getting about 2 nights a week without being woken up.  Then last week I was 5 for 7 and the last 3 night have not been great--like 4 hrs. at night, all chopped up. Luckily I don't exercise on Sunday.  Here's to sleeping babies and warm blankets.

This week, ramp up the running. I have been running at 7.8 instead of 7.5 and it feels good.  My stride actually feels most natural between 8.2-8.5 miles an hour.  It will take a while to get up to 3 miles at that pace.  Right now, I think I can do maybe 1.5 miles at that speed.

Monday: 3 miles and lift
Tuesday: 5 miles Fartlek
Wednesday: 3 miles and lift
Thursday: 6 miles
Friday: 3 miles and lift light
Saturday:  6 miles

I feel like I ran into a brick wall. Hopefully sleep will fix that and I am not getting sick.

Runner's World (Full article) has a list of foods every runner should add to their grocery cart.
  1. Almonds and other nuts
  2. Eggs
  3. Sweet Potatoes
  4. Whole grain Cereal with Protein
  5. Oranges
  6. Canned Black Beans
  7. Mixed Salad Greens
  8. Salmon
  9. Whole-Grain Breads
  10. Frozen Stir-Fry Vegetables
  11. Whole Grain Pasta
  12. Chicken
  13. Frozen Mixed Berries
  14. Dark Chocolate
  15. Low-fat Yogurt
I eat all of these things frequently, except for yogurt.  I used to be a yogurt girl, but I have been cutting out most dairy and I just feel better. I tend to  go overboard on nuts, so I don't buy them too often, but I do like almond butter. I'm still trying to figure out the calories I need to support my workouts.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

When It Hurts, Stretch

I felt really tight this morning when I woke up.  Tight right down my inner thighs.  I stretched a little yesterday, but obviously not enough. I did a bunch of heavy-for-me sumo squats with a 65 lb. dumbbell and they were tough.  I knew I would be sore, but I hadn't done a heavy leg day in a while.

Anyway, the tightness made the inside of my foot hurt when I tried to run today.  I had to stop and stretch and massage my feet.  I did get 2.5 miles in, but it didn't feel great. I also lifted my back some. Short and sweet 50 minute workout. Later today, I am going to use the frozen water bottle and work my foot.  Hopefully I will be able to do a good run on Monday.

When I got home, I cleaned for about 2 hrs. The tops of my cabinets hadn't been wiped down for a while (a year) and my microwave was nasty.  Got the toilets cleaned, vacuumed, did the dishes, wiped down some walls and doors. Still need to mop and dust my room. I need to come up with a system that I actually follow.

10 minutes--AMT--warm-up
20 minutes--back
  • rear deltoid row
  • assisted pull-ups
  • lat pulldown
20 minutes--treadmill--run, walk mix--2.5 miles

Friday, November 15, 2013

Educating Myself

I have been jumping around to different running blogs and trying to learn better ways of doing things.  Sometimes I feel like I workout hard and so I should have dramatic changes--in speed, muscle, inches, weight, whatever.

The truth is that it is quality of a workout and not quantity.  More is not always better. I tend to go for a long time.  If I lift hard and I run far then that must be a good workout.  I should probably alternate running and lifting if I want to build more muscle.  I need to make sure I refuel immediately after I exercise. I can tell that my body wants to shut down when I don't get enough food or rest. I tried to cut my time at the gym a bit this week. I think it helped me have more energy throughout the day.

This week I have felt some improvement in speed and form and quicker recovery. I am trying to maintain a certain level of fitness and make it easier to do the half marathon in February. Hopefully it all works out.  I'm planning on running the JingleBell 5K next week.

35 minutes--AMT
40 minutes--legs/glutes (usually 3 sets of 12)
  • squat with neutral shoulder press
  • modified hack squat
  • sumo squat
  • step-up on bench w/ 15 lb. dumbbells
  • Bulgarian split squat--no weight
  • squat with 20 lb. kettlebell
  • shoulder tap planks

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Cardio Day--Thinking

Today was an almost all cardio day, which means that I did a lot of thinking.  And some day dreaming.  I read 2 magazines while I used the AMT for 35 minutes. I can't remember what I read except that Carrie Underwood works out 1.5 hrs. per day and she eats mostly vegan. I ran on the treadmill for 32:30 and went 4.2 miles.  I did stop after 2 miles to use the restroom. You do what you gotta do. I finished with some planks, crunches, and mountain climbers.

What was I thinking about?  Christmas, Thanksgiving, jury duty, kids, the house, friends. I tried to make sure I had good posture when I was running. I wondered why more people aren't at the gym.  I thought about asking if I could rent the gym on my birthday or have a zumba or bodypump class party.  I wonder if they would do that ? Some of the songs I heard while running today made me want to dance.  And I don't dance. I guess I need to change things up.  Good thing they are adding those classes next month.

I have jury duty the week of Thanksgiving.  I think that means I won't get called in that week. But the next week is my birthday.  That would be the BEST birthday!

I tried to encourage a friend to join the gym this week.  I am not sure if I convinced her. I just know that she would be happier with herself if she worked out hard for a while and I am happy to help her.  She said she didn't want people to watch her and she wasn't sure about leaving her child in a daycare room. So, I offered to let her little boy play with mine while she works out.

Yesterday was so nice outside.  We played with cousins and neighbors for several hours. I went to parent/teacher conferences in the evening.  Both of our girls are good students.  It makes life a lot easier.  Our conferences were quick.  That was nice. 

Trying to keep myself from putting up Christmas stuff.  I think I can wait another week.  That's pretty good, right?

When do you start decorating for Christmas? Real or fake tree?

Good Running Form

I don't think I have the greatest form when I run.  When I ran with my husband and my SIL I noticed that they have the same running form.  They don't even look like they are trying.  They spring off the ground and kick their bums with every step. I know if I improve my form, my speed will improve. And I can help prevent injuries.


 But then again, the winner of the New York Marathon looked like she was out of control a lot of the time. She finished the race in just over 2:25! That's only a few minutes longer than my first half marathon time.


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Breakfast of Champions

Breakfast: High Fiber Maple and Brown Sugar Oatmeal and Blackberries
Lunch: Arugula and Spinach Salad w/ mushrooms, chicken, and avocado
Dinner: Roast and Broccoli
10 minutes--elliptical--warm-up
40 minutes--lifting --arms and shoulders
  • overhead shoulder press with a twist
  • lateral raises
  • front raises
  • iron cross
  • hammer curl
  • outer bicep curl
  • triceps pushdown--cable machine
37 minutes--treadmill--.25 mile repeats with 1-2 minutes walking recovery

Arms Workouts

Workout 1:

Easy Bar Bicep Curl: Outer grip 8 reps, immediately followed by Inner Grip 8 reps. Repeat 3 times.
Demo (not me)

Cable Hammer Curl: 3 sets of 12--machine or dumbbells

Inner Bicep Curl (elbows at side, arms bent 90 degrees, hands rotated out to sides): 3 sets of 12

Workout 2:

Triceps Pushdown (split rope grip--cable): 3 sets of 12

Bench Dip: 3 sets of 10
*bend knees if straight leg is too difficult

Skull Crushers: 3 sets of 12

Taking the Plunge


Why wait until New Year's? We all know things that we can do better to improve our health.  Why don't we do them?  Are we afraid to fail or look funny? I can tell you that the results are worth the effort and the possible embarrassment.  Get started.  One step at a time, one workout at a time.  One meal at a time.

Write down goals and keep track of speeds, inches, number of days that you exercise--something that will help you see progress.  Give yourself rewards--gold stars, new clothes, shoes, or workout DVD. Race yourself. Compare yourself to yourself. 

Starting new things is hard, but we can all do hard things. Put yourself on your "to do" list. Changes take time, they don't happen overnight. Being consistent is the key.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Brooks EZ T long sleeve

I thought this shirt was cute, but I wasn't sure about the length. It is a little short, but not if I use it as a layering piece.  I would have gotten a large if they had it for added length. I wore it to the gym and got super sweaty, but not overheated. The tag said it is a cold weather shirt, so I can use it to run outside. Now I just need some cold weather tights.

12 minutes--AMT--warm-up
35 minutes--quads

  • Squat w/20 lb. kettle bell
  • Hack squat holding 15 lb. dumb bells, heels on half foam roller
  • Jump squat w/ 6 lb. medicine ball
  • Squat with front kick
  • Squat with side leg raise
  • Squat ( no weight)
20 minutes--AMT--12/16 interval
8 minutes--stairclimber--25 floors
10 minutes--treadmill--1 mile at 8:00, walk 2 minutes
10 minute--abs

Quads Workout

Leg Extensions (really squeeze at the top): 3 sets of 12--machine

Leg Press: 3 sets of 12--machine

Bulgarian Split Squat (foot on bench): 3 sets of 12-- demo

Modified Hack Squat (stand w/heels on 25 lb. plate weight): 3 sets of 12--demo

Burnout Move: Do as many of an "easy" move as you can at the end of a workout.

Quad Shuffle: This is like a defensive slide in basketball. Wide stance, bend knees, lowering backside until parallel to the ground. Slide 8 steps to the right and return 8 steps to the left. Try to repeat 3x. Band at shins is not necessary, but makes it harder. demo

Monday, November 11, 2013

New Shirt

Sometimes the best deals are on the MEN'S clearance rack.  I grabbed a few ladies shirts and then scanned the men's rack.  I found this shirt. Simple and comfortable. And on sale.

10 minutes--AMT--warm-up
40 minutes--lifting--back
  • back extensions
  • assisted pull-ups
  • 2 armed bent-over row
  • chainsaws
  • tricep dips
  • tricep pushdowns
34 minutes--treadmill
  • 1 mile 8:22
  • 2 mile 7:41
  • 3 mile 7:41
  • 4 mile 8:00
  • cool down 

Glutes Workout

These were exercises given to me by my trainer. 

Reverse Squat: 3 sets of 12--Feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart. Squat as low to the ground as you can comfortably. Push back up until knees are at 90 degrees, then go down again.


Step Up to Lunge Back: 3 sets of 12--Step up on bench with both feet.  Return to the ground and lunge back with right foot. Repeat. 12 on one side, 12 on the other.

Plie Squat: 3 sets of 12--Wide stance, feet pointing out. Squat down and up, squeezing glutes.

Hamstring Curl: 3 sets of 12---machine

Butt Ups (single leg bridge): 3 sets of 12 (each leg)

disclaimer: I am not a trainer or a doctor. Do at your own risk. Start without added weight.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Pain Relief Tools

Frozen water bottle--I use this to massage the bottom of my foot or hold it under my arch. I also like to roll my Achilles and calves with it.
Ice pack--regular ice packs are good for on top of the knees or hips.  Sometimes I sleep on an ice pack if I have a pinched nerve in my back.

Icy Hot--I switched from BioFreeze to Icy Hot recently and I like it better.  This dispenser is a little messy, but it works well. To relieve tight muscles.
Ibuprofen--I don't use this a lot. When I can't sleep or sit without pain, I will take some.
Hot bath--Just to relax.  It feels so good after a hard run or lifting session.  Or when it is freezing outside.

Ankle rotations
Foam roller
Chiropractic care

My Night

We had six kids sleeping in the house last night.  There was a lot of noise.  I really respect those of you who have that many kids of your own. They all wanted to sleep together, so we created "Bed Land" in the smallest bedroom in the house. The 5 oldest smashed into this room. 

  Luckily, this guy slept in his crib AND slept all night.

And today is Sunday. A day of rest. I may need a nap.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Trying On Different Shoes

I have been wearing the same running shoes for at least 3 years.  I have heard that it is good to have at least 2 pairs to rotate for running and working out.  I thought I would try the Brooks PureFlow2 because they are not a minimalist shoe, but a step down from a cushion shoe, going toward minimalist.  I would never go to a bare foot shoe because I know high mileage is hard on my joints, but I am interested in improving my speed and strengthening my muscles to help meet that goal.
Brooks PureFlow2

A few of the runner bloggers that I read like the PureFlow 2, but they felt so weird on my feet.  The heel drop was so pronounced and I didn't like it.  It would take a long time to get used to it and I might not like it anyway.  So I tried on Brooks Ghost, which is still a neutral cushion shoe, but not as cushiony as the Glycerin. 
Ghost 6
Brooks Ghost 6

I think I have found the shoe I like and if I am going to get a 2nd pair I will probably stick with the Glycerin. The owner of the shoe store said I am on the verge of fast.  So, I guess I need to push a little harder.  This week I am going to try running 7.8 mph (instead of 7.5 mph) on the treadmill and see if I can do a 5K at that speed. I think I have 2 weeks before I need to start the actual half marathon training.

7 minutes--AMT--warm-up
30 minutes--weights--squats, lunges, sumo squat, calf raises, leg extension, hamstring curl.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Easy Run

I am just starting to add distance to my runs.  An easy run is running 1:30-2:00 slower than your desired pace time. The crazy thing about "easy runs" is they are difficult.  I have a hard time going slowly because it feels like I am running in the mud or something.

10 minutes--AMT--warm-up
60 minutes--treadmill--6.75 miles--about 9 minute miles

Why Are Easy Runs Important?
I found this graphic on that explains some of the benefits of easy runs. Click the link to read the article that gives an explanation for each bubble.


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Give Thanks--Smile

There is a gentleman at the gym who is probably 75+.  He has white hair and keeps it slick and parted to the side.  He rides the bike and lifts some weights.  He is one of my gym friends. I ask him how his new knee is doing and he asks me how my races are going.

Today, he said he knows that I am doing well because I am smiling more.  It is true.  I feel strong and more confident.  More capable of doing new things. I appreciate all of the kind people at the gym. I have lots of reasons to smile.  I am trying to do it more often and be more grateful.  We have a comfortable life and are blessed with good family and friends. Can't ask for much more.

Ruffled Sunshine

To Go or Not to Go?

There are a few things I could get done this morning if I skip the gym. Argh!
Target to look at lamps and knobs for the kitchen.
Try on the Brooks PureFlow2 and some shirts.
Hit Costco.
I can't do it all before the bus comes with my kindergartener.
Maybe I should go to the GYM.
Then try on shoes.
Come home and have lunch.
Head to Costco.
It is a lot easier with only one child. Hmmm.

All right. Gym it is. That wasn't so hard.

35 minutes--AMT--16/18 interval--4.4 miles
15 minutes--ab machines, decline
10 minutes--step ups on 9" step
10 minutes--kettlebell swings
10 minutes--treadmill--1 min. sprint (9mph), 1 min. walk(4.0mph). Last sprint 10 mph.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Making Time to Exercise

You make time for things that are important to you.  If you love sports, you attend athletic events or watch them on TV.  If you love food, you make time to grocery shop and look up recipes and cook.  If you love clothes, you make time to shop.  If you love your family, you make time to play and talk with them.  If you love books, you find the time to read.

It might not be possible to make time for exercise every day.  But a few times a week is a good start.  Make time and I am sure that you will feel better.  More alive. Sleep better. Able to handle stress.  There are so many benefits.  
The trainer put this quote on the wall.


My birthday and Christmas are coming up, so here is a list of items I wouldn't mind finding under the tree.

Paisley Chaturanga™ Tight
paisley chatarunga tight $69

EZ T LS Run Happy
Run Happy EZ T long sleeve $26 for select colors

Forerunner® 10
Garmin Forerunner 10 $129.99
The Garmin website is showing a sale pre-Thanksgiving

Under Armour Run shirt $24.99

15 minutes--AMT--16/18 interval
30 minutes--lifting--legs
  • leg extension
  • leg press
  • squats w/ 20 lb. kettlebell
  • squats w/o weight
  • jump squats
  • single leg squats
25 triceps push-ups
46 minutes--treadmill--5 miles fartlek (sprinting)

Monday, November 4, 2013

Excitement at the Gym

Everything was normal when I first got to the gym.  All the regulars were there.  I warmed up and then got on the treadmill.  4 miles  in 32:30 minutes. A 70 year old man was walking next to me.  We started chatting about heart rate and he said that he could only walk because he had had 5 heart attacks. I told him to keep it up.  Do what you can do, just keep moving and watch your heart rate.

I move on to lifting weights.  Shoulders only.  I had planned on going to the store too, so I didn't stay as long.  When I walked over to get my jacket, I saw a man(a different gentleman) on the floor, leaning against some equipment.  He said that he fainted, but that he felt fine.  Several of us started asking him questions.  I told the gym worker that the lady in the corner was a nurse.  She stopped her workout and came over to evaluate him.  Turns out he is on blood pressure meds and is Type 2 diabetic. They give him some water and move him from the floor to a chair. When he gets to the chair, he starts seizing. Scary.  His wife kept saying, "I told him to drink water, I told him to eat more."  She was not happy or worried.  At that point we all yelled call 911! I waited until the ambulance got there.  Hopefully he is doing well. 

I am grateful that I have friends at the gym and that I know some things about them.  Maybe they didn't need her help, but I think it was comforting for them to know there was a nurse helping them. This lady was in the right place at the right time AND willing to serve.  An Angel.

Matthew 25:40
And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have adone it unto one of the bleast of these my cbrethren, ye have done it unto me.

Washing Workout Clothes

Let's face it, after a hard workout, we all stink.  And our clothes stink too. 

For a long time, I just used regular Tide or All or some other normal laundry detergent.  The last time I went to Sports Authority, they had sweat specific detergent, but I didn't get any because I have been happy with Tide with Febreze.

It really works to get out stinky pit smell. I now wash all of our clothes with that detergent and the kids with All Free and Clear.  I try to wash clothes every other day, but if stuff is really stinky, I throw it right in.

How do you keep your workout gear smelling fresh?

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Make your Waist and Hips Look Smaller

If you want to make your waist and hips look smaller, build the muscles in your shoulders. My favorite shoulder lifts are the seated shoulder press with a twist and lateral raises.

I had frequently done standing shoulder presses with dumbbells to tone my shoulders, but they weren't really working.  When I added the twist, the changes were pretty dramatic.

Seated Overhead Shoulder Press with a Twist:   Sit on the edge of a bench or chair. Make sure you are sitting up straight and holding in your abs.  Hold dumbbell in each hand, palms facing your sides and raise to shoulder level. Press to head level, then twist arms so palms are facing forward.  Press arms straight above head.  Lower arms to head, twist again, palms facing sides and return to shoulder level. If you are just starting, 5-8 lb. weights should be enough. Once that weight is too easy, continue to up weight to build muscle. Try to do 12 reps building to 3 sets of 12 reps.

Lateral Raises: Standing, hold dumbbells down  at your sides. Raise arms simultaneously to shoulder level, keeping arms straight. Lower back to sides. Start with 5 lb. dumbbells.  Work up to 3 sets of 12 reps.

My husband said I should have "pumped up" before I took pictures. Maybe next time.

Local Winter Races

November 23--Jingle Bell Run 5K
November 28--Turkey Trot 5K
December 21--Cable Bridge Run 5K/10K
For more races go to
Just thinking about these races make me feel cold.  Better get some cold weather gear.
The next half marathon is February 22.

Friday, November 1, 2013

What Is a Fartlek?

Here is an explanation from Runner's World.

"Fartlek Workouts are not only fun to say out loud, but they're fun to run. Fartlek is Swedish for "speed play," and that is exactly what it’s all about. Unlike tempo and interval work, fartlek is unstructured and alternates moderate-to-hard efforts with easy throughout. After a warmup, you play with speed by running at faster efforts for short periods of time (to that tree, to the sign) followed by easy-effort running to recover. It’s fun in a group setting as you can alternate the leader and mix up the pace and time. And in doing so, you reap the mental benefits of being pushed by your buddies through an unpredictable workout. The goal is to keep it free-flowing so you’re untethered to the watch or a plan, and to run at harder efforts but not a specific pace."

10 minutes--AMT warm-up
35 minutes--lifting--leg extension, squat rack, sumo squat, reverse squat.
45 minutes--treadmill, easy run--5 miles
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