Tag: wellness


I Think We Should Take a Break Fitness

This post is honestly mostly for me to sort out my thoughts, but I know I’m not the only one who’s going through what I’m going through so I thought I’d make it a blog post.

If you’ve been following me on my other social media accounts, you know that my weight loss isn’t exactly going well. Not from my lack of trying, either. I ate at a calorie goal and did well, then it stalled. Then I switched it up and started eating a more plant based diet. GAINED weight. Gave the plant based thing some more time since it can be a big adjustment for your body. Nope. Still a gain. The other day, I mentioned eating based on the IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros) method and I started logging yesterday and today. Epic failure.

I know what you’re thinking. I couldn’t have possibly seen results from 2 days of IIFYM. You’re right! The reason it was an epic failure was because of how time consuming figuring all that out was. On top of being time consuming, I was started to get irritated at the lack of flexibility there was. Sure, you can eat to fit your macros, but if you don’t have a ton of calories to work with, there is very little flexibility.

That’s when I realized: why the fluff am I trying to go through all of this trouble? What is the point? What is my end-game and what is the long term plan?

To answer those fairly quickly:

  • I want to look good.
  • The point is to look good after having a baby.
  • The end game is to look good.
  • The long term plan is to look good.

 

See the problem?

I am so focused on wanting to look good that I am completely ignoring all of the OTHER things (and frankly, more important things) my body can do.

Before I get a bunch of  “I told you so’s” hear me out.

It is ingrained in us to like what we see. We want people to like what they see when they look at us. And that’s not a bad thing some times. What IS a bad thing is when the focus and the priority of your day is looking good. I will be the first to admit that, over the past few weeks, that has been my focus. I still go through my daily routine and I completed the tasks I need to complete. I’m a good wife and a good mom. Outside of those priorities, though, my brain was 100% focused on what I could do to look better. I hated my body.

In church today, I was thinking about the past couple weeks and how I’ve just been bummed out and depressed because of my lack of progress. That’s when I got hit like a ton of bricks.

wonderfullymade

Me hating my body is telling God that I hate the body he gave me. It’s me saying the work he did to create me before I was even a thought is worthless and garbage. I am made in His image and hating my own body is like hating Him. Let that kick you in the gut for a minute.

It would be like someone painting a piece of art specifically for you just for you to focus all day on the fact that you hate it. In reality, it’s a piece of art that was wonderfully made. It’s made up of all the same things as other paintings- paint, canvas, brush strokes- but it has a different look that is totally it’s own and it is beautiful.

Truth be told, the body I have is NOT garbage. My body can do amazing things. I can run, jump, squat, press, and climb. It carried, grew, and kept a baby alive before it brought that baby into the world. It can run on no sleep efficiently and it can recharge when it needs to. Does it look the way I would like it to? No. And I don’t think it ever will. But I am learning that that’s ok. I am NOT an elite athlete or a physique or bikini competitor. I don’t model. I don’t have a job that requires me to look a certain way so I don’t need to look the way the way people who have those jobs do.

All of this being said, being happy with my body is not an excuse to not take care of it. I was given this body for a reason, so I need to take care of it the best I can. In my case, that does mean I need to lose a few pounds. Those pounds don’t have to be gone overnight, however. I don’t need to do anything crazy to lose that weight. I don’t need to spend hours at the gym or count my calories or be strict on my macros. Those things will make me look good, but how long can I actually keep that up? 1 month? 6 months? 1 year? Certainly not forever. All I need to do is find balance. Make healthy choices. Stay active. Go back to basics. Those things can be made into lifelong habits.

 

I have been counting calories/macros for 5 years. 5 YEARS. I know what’s good for me and what isn’t. I know healthy habits. I just need to put them into practice. That’s why, macros and calorie counting, I think we need a break.


Weekends and Walks Life

This weekend was a good one for me. Since having M home, I’ve had one trip out of the house without her. Other than that one trip, I’ve spent every day either at home with her or out running errands with her and Mike. It’s not a bad thing and it has become a [very welcome] new normal, but have a baby doesn’t mean I don’t need some time to myself. This weekend, Mike watched M while I went to a baby shower for a friend. It was the first time I’d picked out a cute outfit, put on makeup, and did my hair since my baby shower the week before M was born!

fall outfit

I bought this shirt at Burlington in the maternity section (no shame! It was cute!), the pants are yoga pants from Target, and the shoes are from Burlington as well. The scarf I’ve had for years and probably got at Target. The purse is Michael Kors and the sunglasses are Moscot. Mike bought the glasses for me when he was out of town and I am in LOVE with them. They’re extra special because they’re a limited edition line made by Myles Kennedy- the lead singer of one of my favorite bands, Alter Bridge.

On Monday, I finally made it out of the house to the park! I had been itching to take M on walks but never was able to get out of the house due to rain. I was so happy that Monday was such a gorgeous day! I went to a local park and walked around the lake. It’s a 1.4 mile loop. I would be lying if I didn’t say I was a little sore. It’s kind of pathetic, but I walked pretty quickly and haven’t moved that much in a long time!

park walk

When I got home, I threw together a chicken Caesar salad for lunch and called it a day.

caesar salad

I’m hoping to be able to get another walk in this week! I have my 6 week post-partum check up on Monday and I’m hoping I’ll be cleared to exercise after that. Thanksgiving is next week and I’d love to get started back running!


What’s Your Excuse? Fitness

During the first half of my pregnancy, I worked out a decent amount. I would go to the gym 2 or 3 times a week for an hour or so. It paled in comparison to my usual 4 to 6 times a week but I was pregnant and exhausted so I let myself take an extra day or so off. I posted pictures and updates fairly often and I remember posting one tweet that said something having to do with feeling sick and being pregnant but still working out. I hashtagged “what’s your excuse?”

Over the past few months, I’ve come to learn that I HATE that phrase.

After being put on bedrest, I wanted to work out but I couldn’t. I physically was unable and forbidden to do more than walk to the bathroom. Seriously, I was told that if I wanted to use the bathroom and shower right after, I would need to sit in the shower. Otherwise, I was told to use the bathroom, go back to bed and lay down, THEN go take a shower. I would log in to Facebook and Instagram and see posts like “35 weeks pregnant and crushing my gym session! What’s your excuse?” or “This guy has one leg/is 90 years old/has been in a wheelchair for 2 years, what’s your excuse?” These posts really hurt my feelings and, frankly, they made me feel like shit. I had an excuse. A damn good one too. But, somehow, I felt like it wasn’t enough of an excuse to not be in the gym. I missed running so much- I still do! As someone who has spent the last 4 years consistently in the gym, it was crushing to not only be unable to exercise, but see others rub my inability to exercise in my face. It really sucked.

Now, I understand the sentiment behind the phrase. It’s supposed to be motivating. A kick in the ass to people who are just lazy, right? And, sure, maybe I was emotional and that led to my feelings being hurt by these posts, but the phrase itself is judgmental. It assumes that you’re just making excuses if you’re not out there beasting a workout every day and that’s not the case. Why not just, “Hey, if I can do it, so can you!” If someone had asked me in person what my excuse was, I wonder how they would react if I’d told them. Well, my blood pressure is so high that I could end up having a seizure which could kill me and my unborn child. Is that a good enough excuse for you? It’s ridiculous.

Moving forward, I’m going to eliminate those types of phrases from my vocabulary. Not everyone has the ability to do what I can do and I don’t have the ability to do what other people do. It’s not a sign of weakness, it’s just the way things are and that’s ok!

 

 


18 Week Bump Update // Thoughts on Weight Gain Family

Happy hump day!

Across the internet, there’s a “thing” for pregnant women called “Hump Day Bump Day.” Wednesdays are the days pregnant ladies post their bump photos. Wednesday also happens to be the day that my weeks start over! Now that I’m almost halfway through pregnancy (what?!), I want to start participating in Hump Day Bump Day (HDBD) on the blog. I’ll also use it as a weekly update to let yall in on what’s been going on with me in general! Here’s this week’s bump update!

 

How far along? 18 weeks!

Total weight gain: 13 pounds (I don’t even want to talk about it– but I will below)

Maternity clothes? Yep! Maternity pants are super comfy. I have mostly been wearing a lot of maxi skirts and dresses which haven’t been maternity, though.

Stretch marks? None yet!

Sleep? I’m functioning off less sleep than I was in the first trimester, which is great. Sleep is tough, though. Between sciatic nerve pain and needing to use the bathroom 2-4x a night, my sleep is interrupted.

Rings on or off? On, but it’s a replacement set. My hands are the only things on my body that swell right now. I’m pretty sure it’s the heat.

Best moment this week?  Yesterday! We heard the baby’s heartbeat again. It was strong and high due to a lot of movement. This baby is very active in the morning!

Cravings: None really. I’m glad my food aversions have gone away. I’m more the type to really want something that is mentioned rather than crave something random. Usually that feeling goes away after a little while!

Symptoms: Back pain is my biggest symptom right now. If I walk/stand for a long time my lower back starts to hurt and I get pretty nasty sciatic pain at the end of the day. I also have some pretty killer acid reflux. Hooray!

Nutrition? Definitely could be better! That’s something at the top of my list between now and my next appointment.

Workouts? I’m working out 2-3x per week. Mostly 2x a week but last week I hit 3x and it felt good so I’m thinking I’ll be able to continue with that. I mostly do cardio but I’ve also started to include some light weight training.

Belly button in or out? In.

Looking forward to? Next Monday! We found out if Baby C is a boy or a girl!

 

Now. The big weight gain talk.

Pregnancy is so different for every person. My OB says “Some girls eat like pigs and don’t gain anything while others eat like fleas and gain a lot.” I’m somewhere in the middle as far as eating goes, but I’ve gained 13 pounds in 18 weeks. At my last appointment, my doctor wasn’t overly concerned but it was something she mentioned to keep an eye on so I’m making that a priority for the next month or so. Weight gain up to about 35 pounds is healthy for a pregnancy but my weight can’t continue to increase at this rate.

It is really hard to see the scale go up after losing a lot of weight. When you are mentally used to see the scale decrease, any increase is hard, much less a pound a week. It has been a big adjustment, but I am focusing on the fact that our baby is healthy. As long as our baby is healthy, I’ll be ok seeing the scale go up.

 

 


The Best At Home Workouts! Fitness

affiliatelinkdisclaimer

Sometimes, it’s really hard to get to the gym. Maybe the hours aren’t ideal some days. Maybe you’re a stay at home parents and you’re not sure if you can stay at the gym for an hour. Or maybe the weather gets ridiculous (Northern Winters and Southern Summers, I’m looking at you) and working out outside is nearly impossible.

What do you do on those days? You could pop in a Jillian Michaels DVD or go on YouTube to find workout videos, but those get boring after watching the same video everyday.

Or, you could go to a website that is constantly updating their workouts, has workout challenges and programs, offers advice from trainers, and actually has some great workouts for less than $10 a month.

I’d go with option 2 and, luckily, that website exists! Cosmopolitan magazine has created CosmoBody. It’s like Netflix, but for workouts.

7wmG30BOwCHPkXzvUii0_IRWNv7waw7TnjmEvtUcoUg

Before I go any further, I want to say that I don’t endorse things I don’t love. I actually really dislike promoting workout/diet plans because I feel like a lot of them are scams to get you to consistently pay a good amount of money for something like a shake or workout DVD’s that end up sitting on a shelf somewhere. Some people have been very successful on those plans, but I am uncomfortable promoting them. This program, however, is so different. When CosmoBody first contacted me about promoting their website, I was a little hesistant because I didn’t know if it would be one of those “pay money and don’t get your money’s worth” things. I can honestly tell you that it’s not. To be honest, $10 a month is really cheap for the amount of resources they offer. There are a ton of different options for workouts on CosmoBody.

There are cardio videos like:

Cardio Dance (Hip Hop Dance 101 is a great video to get started!)
Kickboxing
Endurance workouts

even a workout that you do on a set of stairs!

Weight workouts/body conditioning workouts like:

10-2-10 Workout: 12 minute workout that works your entire body and leaves you sweaty. It incorporates plyo and some dumbbell work for a full workout. This workout was really tough!

Multiple yoga videos, interval training, and (my favorite part) challenges!

The Challenges are workout programs like:

30 Day Summer Action Plan
21 Day Total Body Makeover
5 Day Maintain Don’t Gain program

 

The workouts range from 5 minutes to over 30 minutes so there is a workout for any situation. One of the best things is that the workouts require minimal equipment. If you dont have any equipment at home, don’t worry! There are plenty of body weight workouts. Only have dumbbells? No problem. You don’t need a full set of weights or any machines for CosmoBody workouts. It truly is the Holy Grail of workout websites.

I am really looking forward to using this post-partum!

CosmoBody is letting you try it for free for 10 days, after that, it’s only $9.95 per month! To me, $10 a month is worth being able to stream workouts wherever you are.

Click here to sign up!

If you do sign up, let me know what you think! I am loving it!

Carrie Signature

 


18 Weight Loss Truths Fitness

weight loss truths

  1. Incorporating exercise into your routine is HARD at first.
  2. Running feels nearly impossible at the beginning.
  3. Completing a workout is extremely rewarding.
  4. You know how many calories are in pretty much anything.
  5. Calorie “sticker shock” is a real thing.
  6. Shopping for groceries is hard. (I will not buy Oreos. I will not buy Oreos.)
  7. Shopping for clothes is fun…(smaller sizes, YES)
  8. Shopping for clothes can make you cry. (goodbye, bank account)
  9. When people start to notice your weight loss? Win.
  10. You cry. Mostly at the beginning. (It’s hard to work hard and see little or no change!)
  11. You learn what determination is.
  12. You learn how to perservere.
  13. You find out more about who you are.
  14. You grow as a person.
  15. You become more confident.
  16. NSV’s become more important the longer you’re losing weight (weight loss has stalled? Well I still fit into a smaller jean size today!)
  17. Sometimes you get mad that you have to watch what you eat when everyone else seems to be able to eat whatever they want without a problem…
  18. But then you remember that everyone is different and that you are awesome!

 

What are some other weight loss truths you’ve experienced?

Carrie Signature


Healthy Buffalo Chicken Bites Fitness

The past few weeks have been incredibly busy for our family. Between family coming into town and Mike being out of town a couple of weekends, I haven’t really had the most steady routine which makes things hard for me. Couple that with the fact that I haven’t been feeling good and I am just all kinds of a mess.

Without a routine, it is really easy to fall into bad habits. I was able to stay active this weekend, thanks to a 5k I ran.

5k

It wasn’t my fastest 5k ever, but it felt good to get outside and run. I haven’t run in a few weeks and I really missed it! My running buddy, Gen, had a goal for time so she went on without me and she CRUSHED her goal. I was super proud of her!

Once I finished the 5k, my friend and I went to Waffle House for some breakfast and then I went home and went straight to bed. I was exhausted.

While the 5k kept me active this weekend, part of me really wanted to just sleep and eat junk. It’s really easy to use a race or an active weekend as an excuse to eat poorly. “I ran 5 miles, so I can totally eat this burger, large fries, and large shake, right?!” Wrong. Maybe once in awhile, but out of habit? No way. What you CAN do, however, is find a way to make that junk food healthy.

Enter: Healthy Buffalo Chicken Bites.

Frozen buffalo chicken bites used to be huge in our house, but not anymore. They are so horrible for you and who knows what percentage of them is actually chicken. We stopped buying them but, lucky for Mike, I made up a recipe for Buffalo Chicken Bites that was healthy and still delicious. All you need is chicken, panko, some flour, some spices, and your favorite hot sauce. It’s super easy and you (or your kids) will love them!

healthy  buffalo chicken bites

Healthy Buffalo Chicken Bites
originally posted on A Guiltless Glutton

Servings: 2

Amount per serving: 245 calories—18g carbs—2g fat—40g protein

Ingredients:

**: nutrition information reflects ½ of the amount of the ingredient listed due to excess shaken off or not used during the process.

  • 12 oz chicken breast (it was about 3 chicken breasts for me)
  • ¼ cup flour**
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon onion salt
  • ½ cup Franks Red Hot or other buffalo sauce**
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs**
  • cooking spray

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cut up your chicken breast into bite sized pieces.
  3. Mix together flour, garlic powder, and onion salt into a bowl.
  4. Pour the Franks Red Hot in another bowl.
  5. Pour the Panko into another bowl.
  6. Move each piece of chicken from the flour mixture to the buffalo sauce to the Panko then onto a greased (nonstick spray) baking sheet.
  7. Lightly spray the top of the bites and bake for 5 minutes. Flip, respray, and bake for another 5 minutes.
  8. Serve with a dressing of choice and dig in!

healthy buffalo chicken bites


Staying Active on the Weekend Fitness

affiliatelinkdisclaimer

Raise your hand if you’ve ever stayed on track with workouts and nutrition during the week and then spent the weekend eating junk and watching Netflix. *raises hand.* 

How miserable is that feeling? Monday morning rolls around and you feel awful because your body is filled with junk and you didn’t move as much as you should have. Those weekends can often roll over into weeks and then months until you wonder what you’re doing with life. Not a fun way to live!

This past week I’ve done so well eating right and exercising. I made some healthy banana chocolate chip muffins to satisfy my sweet tooth, I’ve made healthy choices when going out to eat, and I’ve included healthy meals into this week’s meal plan. I also worked out 4 days this week and I’ll be working out tomorrow too. It has been a very successful week!

All that being said, it’s Friday and, while I would love to just sit and do nothing and relax this weekend, it’s important to stay active! Here are some FUN things you can do to make sure you’re staying active this weekend!

staying active on the weekend

Hiking
The weather has been amazing here lately so it’s perfect for a good hike or walk on the beach. We don’t have mountains close to us, but we do have a lot of good places to walk like Fort Pulaski and Tybee Island.  Going hiking is a great way to get some fresh air, spend time with someone, and get in a good workout.

hiking for fitness

Gym Class
If it’s not quite warm enough for hiking, try going to a class you haven’t tried yet! While classes at the gym are often fewer during the weekends, gyms usually offer the staples like aerobics, spin, and yoga. Check your gyms class schedule and try one you haven’t done before!

Pickup Games
Have some friends and a Frisbee? Find a park and start a game of Ultimate Frisbee! If you can find a basketball court, volleyball net, or soccer field, get some people together and make a day out of being active together. Go to the beach and throw around a football! Some of my favorite summer memories are going to a friend’s house, having dinner and a beer, then walking over to a neighborhood park and playing a pickup game of soccer with some small nets our friend has. It’s a great way to stay active and enjoy the spring and summer weather while it lasts!

staying active

Shop
This may sound stupid, but shopping is a good way to get off your butt. Yeah, you’re not exerting a ton of energy but if you go to the mall for a couple of hours, that’s a couple of hours you’ve spent walking on your feet and not sitting watching a movie. Imagine how many FitBit steps that would be!

 

Whatever you decide to do, make sure you do something to keep you moving this weekend. Your body will thank you for it!

What is your favorite weekend activity?

Carrie Signature


Thinking Thin // Abandoning the “Fat” Mentality Fitness

The desire to lose weight is one that many people can relate to. For some people, the goal is maybe 10 pounds. A difficult task, but definitely doable without any other sort of necessary changes. For others (myself included), those who have to lose 20, 30, or even over 100 pounds, there is more to lose than just weight. We also have to lose our “fat” mentality. We need to think thin (or curvy or healthy or whatever your goal is!).

think thin

Losing weight is hard, but it is often the mental aspect of weight loss that is harder. Let’s use a hypothetical example to explain. Jane needs to lose 50 pounds. Jane changes her habits and starts eating better and moving more. Her clothes get loose and she has to buy smaller sizes. She notices that her tummy is flatter and her arms are getting smaller. People comment on her weight loss and it makes her feel good. She gets to her goal weight and, while she sees the loss, she still doesn’t FEEL like she’s at her goal weight. Instead of being happy that she made it, she feels like she failed because she doesn’t look the way she thought or she still needs to make some changes here or there. She still feels fat. This is much different than an eating disorder or body dysmorphic disorder. Those diseases are exactly that, diseases. This is someone who has spent their life (or more recent life) as “fat” and now does not know how to identify as being not “fat.” That can be a tough time! I’ve been through it and it’s not fun at all!

 

It’s a tough thing to avoid, but it is possible. In order to avoid this way of thinking you have to be proactive and you have to learn how to stay positive. It is so much easier said than done, but if you put in the work to make your mind right, your body will follow and you will thank yourself later.

 

After I gained back a lot of the weight I lost initially, I worked hard to lose it again– the right way. I took it slow and didn’t over do it. I made my goals more realistic and I gave myself more wiggle room. More importantly, I adopted habits to keep me from feeling negatively about myself for gaining weight back.

 

Instead of focusing on the scale, I focused on what I was capable of. I became stronger and faster and I used that to push me to keep up my good work. I also made sure to (try) to balance out all negative thoughts with positive ones. If I thought something bad about myself, I would find one positive thing about myself so I could continue thinking positively.

 

Lately, I’ve found that yoga has really helped. Yoga is great for your muscles as exercise, but it is also great for your mind. It gives you an opportunity to just be with yourself for an hour (or however long your class is). How often do you have time to just be with yourself and focused on you for 100% of the time? It’s very rare. Meditation during shavasana (the last part of a yoga class, generally) can be a time that can really open your mind up to things that you may be too busy to realize otherwise. Use shavasana to reflect on positivity and mantras of self-worth and self-esteem. It will change the way you think!

 

Lastly, and most importantly, the best way to avoid the “fat” mentality is to set realistic goals. Don’t say “I’m going to weigh 120 pounds and have a 6 pack” because you don’t know that! Set goals like “I’m going to get stronger and I’m going to improve my blood pressure.” If you must set a goal that has to do with weight, don’t add anything. Talk with your doctor about a healthy weight. Don’t aim to be 110 pounds if you’re 6 feet tall because, for most people, that wouldn’t be healthy. Don’t put any aesthetic expectations with a weight because 120, 130, 150, 170 pounds will look different on everyone.

 

If you already are dealing with the “fat” mentality, I strongly encourage you to take some time to write out what you’re feeling and why you’re feeling it. When you put it all down on paper, you’ll see that that standards you set for yourself can be ridiculous. At the end of the day, what you are capable of is important and the only person who needs to love what you look like is YOU.

Carrie Signature



Page 1 of 212