02-03-2016

My First Week Of WeightWatchers + My Grocery Store Picks

So I started WeightWatchers last week…and so far have lost 3 lbs.!! I have done WeightWatchers in the past but I was just calculating points based on calculators I found online. This time I decided to join the plan in order to get recipe ideas from them as well as their handy dandy app. Plus, I only really stuck with it for 3 weeks last time.

This time, I’m determined to lose at least 15 lbs. by summer. I just have not been feeling great about myself and need to lose fat. I store fat in my midsection which is even worse (this is the worst place to store fat).

Anyway, I decided to join WW with a friend. They’ve changed their point system to account more for added sugars and protein, which I really like. For example, one of their carrot cake snacks used to be 2 pts. and now it is 4. I think it’s important for people to cut down on their sugar intake.

So like I said, I lost 3 lbs in week one! This is a combination of my diet as well as working out way more than I have in recent times. I’ve been trying to do spin in the mornings and run in the evenings, though sometimes I run before spin, or I’ll do a run, then one of Ride & Reflect‘s 30/30 classes (30 min. spin and 30 min. yoga). This may seem like a lot but I have hit a plateau and knew I needed to switch things up and do more. I think many people, such as myself in the past, grossly overestimate how much they are burning in, let’s say, a 4-5 mile run…which leads to eating more, which leads to not losing weight.

I was running consistently, but definitely overeating. Here are a few things I’ve learned so far with WW:

  • My portions were too big. The first few days I was shocked by how “little” I was eating…definitely was not supposed to be eating that much pasta :) but I always justified it with, “I just worked out, I can eat this for dinner.”
  • When I’m tracking my food, I have more motivation to say no to things. I went to Starbucks and really wanted something, but all their snacks were at least 10 points or more! I knew that would leave me with very little for the rest of the day, so I said no.
  • Drinking tea helps. I’m sure you’ve all heard this, but drinking tea can help with cravings. So now before bed I drink this detox tea I bought, or a lemon ginger tea for digestion.

I’m really liking the program so far. I needed much more accountability with nutrition, and this is helping me stay on track. For some reason, if I’m just tracking calories on my own in MyFitnessPal, I just am not as motivated. Oh, I also got a food scale which I love! It’s been eye-opening seeing the actual portion sizes of things, like chicken or beef.

One last thing: I posted a new YouTube video on my channel today! It’s just a quick video of some of my favorite picks at the grocery store. Check it out:

And lastly, don’t forget to sign up for my 5 day fitness challenge! 5 days of workouts sent right to your inbox and one lucky winner will win a PlantFusion prize pack! You can sign up below:

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Let me know if you sign up!

Have you ever tried WeightWatchers or a similar program?

What is harder for you, consistent exercise or consistent healthy nutrition?

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02-11-2015

Health & Fitness Links To Get You Through The Day

Is it the weekend yet? This week is craawwlllinggggg. But at least today I get to pamper myself and go get a pedicure before this wedding I’m going to this weekend. Do you like getting pedis alone or with a friend? I prefer a friend but have to go alone today =’(

Anyway, here are some links for you to check out!

Featured: Red Velvet Cake Granola (NutriFit Mama)

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 9.30.47 AM
How perfect is this for Valentine’s Day? It sounds/looks delicious and I have yet to actually make my own granola. I think I’ll try this but minus the beet root powder, mainly because I’m too lazy to drive to the health food store to find it ;)

Do you like to take naps? For how long?

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01-28-2015

Health & Fitness Links To Get You Through The Day

Well, talk about an overhyped storm! For the past few days the media had been talking about this HISTORIC blizzard of 2015…we were going to get 25-30 inches! I think we ended up getting a total of 6ish haha. I don’t think it’s the meteorologists fault. Many are complaining about them and how they overhyped it, but I think it’s the media. The media was all over this storm and telling people to prepare, get their gas cans ready if needed, etc. etc. You’d think it was the apocalypse bu how they reported it. But whatever…I was just happy to get 2 snow days out of it ;)

Okay so let’s get into this week’s links! Some of the businesses I work with through my business are health & wellness related, so it’s fun perusing blogs and websites each day to curate content. Found a lot of great stuff over the past few days!

Featured: Vanilla Overnight Oats (24 Carrot Life)

vanilla-overnight-oats
I’ve actually never made overnight oats but keep meaning to. I am all about easy, on-the-go breakfasts. My usual is 2 hard boiled eggs that I eat in my car because I give myself just enough time in the morning to get ready and get out. Sleep > sit down breakfast :) Will definitely be trying this one soon!

I’ve been trying a lot of new recipes lately, experimenting with meatless ones. So if you have any favorite meatless recipes, please leave a link in the comments – I’d love to try it!

Do you already have races planned for 2015? Which ones? I haven’t made a race calendar yet.

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01-14-2015

Health & Fitness Links To Get You Through The Day

Have you ever tried a new workout and a few days later you’re STILL sore?? I started a new plan Monday and still can’t walk right! It’s more focused on time than sets and reps (aka you’re out of breath the whole time), so we’ll see how it goes. I’ll keep you posted!

I haven’t done a link roundup in a few weeks…I got all discombobulated with the holidays so let’s get back into it.

Featured: Apple Cinnamon Blender Waffles (The Lean Green Bean)

Apple-Cinnamon-Blender-Waffles
How amazing do those look? I have been wanting a waffle maker for a while…I seriously need to get one. This recipe is so simple and quick…perfect for those lazy weekend mornings.

  • 2 Steps To Make Healthy Eating A Reality (Love Live Surf) – Two great tips here. I need to do better with meal prep. Mainly lunches. Do any of you prepare all your meals ahead of time?
  • Hip Hugger Lower Body Burner (Running Escapades) – Definitely need to add this to my routine once I start running more. But anyone can benefit…strong hips = strong core!
  • Italian Chickpea Casserole (Strength & Sunshine) – This looks delicious and like the perfect meatless dish if you’re looking for one. I will be trying this for sure, especially now that Dan’s resolution is to eat healthier/more veggies :)
  • Make Your Gym Habits Stick (Dare You To…) – Did you make a New Year’s Resolution? These tips will help! I always prepare my gym clothes and bag the night before. Even though I’m not a morning exerciser, it’s right by the door so I don’t forget anything in that morning rush, and have it all ready to go for my workout later in the day.
  • Grocery Shopping On A Budget For One (Lake Shore Runner) – I’ve found that now that I’m mainly buying groceries for myself, it’s a totally different experience in terms of weekly budgeting, buying things that won’t go bad, etc. Question: If you live alone or with a roommate, how do you buy salad in the bags and have it not go bad??? Happens to me every week.

How do you prevent your groceries and veggies from going bad? Do you have a weekly grocery budget?

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11-20-2014

How to NOT Gain Weight During The Holidays

Holidays are here…can you believe Thanksgiving is next week? I’m excited to go out with friends for “Thanksgiving Eve” and then eat my favorite foods on Thanksgiving! I said I would do my Christmas shopping earlier this year but it hasn’t happened yet. Not sure if I’ll partake in Black Friday this year.

Anyway, the holiday season can mean lots of food…unhealthy food. People prepare themselves to gain weight and then plan on losing it in the new year. I know a lot of people who are okay with gaining weight and not working out as much during the holidays because “it’s the holidays.” What?? Why??

How To Not Gain Weight During The Holidays

“Holiday season” is usually two main holidays – Thanksgiving and Christmas. That is only 2 days. Why do we span it out over almost two months? Why is it okay to eat whatever you want for 2 months?

Trust me, I’ve been guilty of this too. I’m used to say, eh whatever I’ll just start back up after New Years. But if you don’t want to gain weight and don’t want to start over on Jan. 1, then don’t let the “holidays” take over. Here are a few tips:

Don’t go nuts for 2 months. I know people have office parties, and then you have your own parties, and then you have your friends’ parties. But really try to be mindful of what you’re eating. Choose the events where you really want to savor the food and company. For me that would be Thanksgiving and Christmas with my family. I’m actually going to “Thanksgiving dinner” with my sister tonight at her school, but plan on keeping portions small and loading up more on veggies than on stuffing. Don’t be complacent with eating whatever during the months of November and December.

Exercise. An obvious one right? If you do splurge, don’t make yourself feel guilty. It happens, and you don’t want to deprive yourself either during this time. But just make sure you counteract it with exercise. Stay active this winter. Try to go to the gym every day or every other day if possible and do whatever you love that makes you sweat. Going to the gym more often may actually help deter you from bad food choices too, because who wants to undo all that hard work??!

Sign up for a holiday race. This kind of goes with the above point, but find a Turkey Trot or a Santa Race and run with friends and family. Sure it’s cold, but it’s a great way to stay active and get others involved. Plus, running a 5K the morning of Thanksgiving means an extra serving of mashed potatoes right? ;)

Don’t wait until the new year. Why wait?? You can start now. Why do we always wait until Monday or “the new year” for a fresh start? What are your goals? Start working towards them now. By waiting until January you’re wasting a whole month you could be working on something! You’ll be ahead of the game once Jan. 1 comes around. If you do end up wanting to wait, then at least start writing down your goals now. Make a concrete plan of how you’re going to achieve those goals, so you’re not one of the high percentage of resolutioners who fall off around February or March.

Remember, the “holidays” are not every day from now until January. Use those days that are not a holiday to stay on track and you won’t gain weight this winter. I know it can be hard and tempting, but really think about what’s more important: staying healthy or indulging in food. And hey, if indulging is more important than go for it! But as I always say to my mom when I give her tough love, “don’t complain later on.” ;)

What tips would you add?

What’s your favorite holiday gathering and food?

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09-24-2014

Health & Fitness Links To Get You Through The Day

I really need to use this weekend to clean and do some fall decorating. Now that I have my own place, I’m excited to decorate for each season! Have you/do you do that too? Any tips on where to find stuff for cheap? :)

Anyway, here are your links for today! For some reason WordPress isn’t letting me upload photos so I can’t have a featured photo with Nicole’s link :(

Featured: How To Clean Wooden Cutting Boards (Simply Nicole)

Who knew? I really didn’t know how to clean a wooden cutting board, and I’m definitely sending this to my mom because that’s what she uses. Very handy.

  • Tuna Avocado Brown Rice Bowl (Run To The Finish) – I love all these things so I’m definitely pinning this to make. I’ve been making a list of recipes the past few days so I can get back on track with planning my meals.
  • Great Warm-Ups For Runners (Running Escapades) – Great video, and I do most of these things!
  • Easy Baked Apples (It’s A Harleyyy Life) – I’m going to a fall themed party this weekend so I may have to bake these up!
  • Healthy Tailgate Recipes (Almost Getting It Together) – Dan and I tailgate most weekends since we have season tickets to Rutgers football. I need to start making some healthier options, because so far it’s just been chips and dip, beer, and sandwiches :)

What do you bring to tailgates? Leave me some ideas please!

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08-27-2014

Health & Fitness Links To Get You Through The Day

Last week I mentioned how September is almost here. Well this week it is in the 90s…serves me right for getting too excited for fall to get here.

I’m going to try getting to the beach one more time for Labor Day Weekend – but we’ll see!

Here is today’s featured link:

This looks so delicious! I love cheese and avocados so this is perfect. I’ve made similar sandwiches where I layer turkey, cheese and avocados…yum. Might have to re-create this for lunch this week :)

Are you going anywhere for Labor Day Weekend? What are your plans?

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08-21-2014

Desk Posture Tips

Do you sit all day? Did you know that sitting all day at work can be as deadly as smoking?? While most of you are probably physically fit, I’ve read that even a 1 hour session at the gym after work doesn’t negate the 8 hours of sitting…which seems obvious.

So what do you do about it? Try to get up and take a 5 minute walk every hour. Think about it…that will be 40 minutes of walking in your work day. That’s a good start.

But this post won’t be about how to sit less. I’m going to talk about how to sit BETTER while you’re at work. Because posture plays a huge role in fitness as well. Having bad posture can lead to injuries and affect how efficient you are while exercising.

I have horrible posture – I’ll admit it. Which is why I wanted to write about this. I wanted to do the research and see how I can help myself be better at this.

Have you heard of upper crossed syndrome? Here’s a quick picture:

upper-crossed-syndrome

 

Source

Upper crossed syndrome is a muscular imbalance in your upper body, usually from sitting at a desk for prolonged periods of time. I have noticed that I have “forward head syndrome” which scares me because my neck bones have now been molded that way it seems!

Here’s what to look for with upper crossed syndrome:

  • Forward head posture – Picture the little old lady crossing the street who can’t see where she’s going because her head is jutting forward of her shoulders so she can only look to the ground in front of her and not up or ahead.

  • Increased cervical lordosis and thoracic kyphosis – The hunchback. Think about how your shoulders must compensate in the overhead position if you have a even the beginnings of a hunchback.

  • Elevated and protracted shoulders – This is when your pecs are so tight and your sub-scapular muscles (the ones between and below your shoulder blades) are too weak to hold your shoulders back so they round forward instead.

  • Rotation or abduction and winging of the scapula – Abduction means the (scapula) bone is moving away from the body which gives it a ‘wing’ looking effect when looking at it from the side or rear views. If someone can slide their fingers under your shoulder blade and grab on to it, your scapulae are winging.

A weak upperbody leads to shoulder tightness and weakness. I’ve seen it in clients before…where doing overhead presses is so hard for them because of their shoulder tightness. 

So how do we avoid all of these postural imbalances?

POSTURE TIPS

I did some Google research and found a few tips to help us all with our posture while at computers. Here’s what I found:

And I found this great infographic from Women’s Health:

posture-tips

Everyday I have to remind myself to do these things, whether it’s at my computer or just driving home in my car. I’m such a sloucher. But I don’t want to have permanent forward head syndrome (or as my sister calls it, “turtle back”) when I’m older.

Do you have good posture? What tips would you add?

If you’re a dancer or gymnast I’m jealous because you all have awesome posture!

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08-20-2014

Health & Fitness Links To Get You Through The Day

Can you believe August is over already? (Cue song August Is Over). I’m so ready for fall though. Surprisingly it’s been an okay summer temperature wise, but I just love the crisp fall weather. Plus, it’s perfect running weather.

Speaking of running, here is today’s featured link:

Featured: 6 Ways To Learn To Pace Yourself (Run To The Finish)

6 ways to learn to pace yourself_thumb[2]

These are great tips, especially if you have problems pacing myself (I still do sometimes). I like her tip about running with music so you’re more in tune with your breathing and effort…though I hate running without music for this very reason! :)

  • College Apartment Kitchen Shopping List (Lean Clean Brie) – Whether you’re in college or not this list will help you. I just moved into a new apartment, so I’ll be taking this on my first grocery shopping trip.
  • How To Work Out For Free (Nolie’s Place) – Working out doesn’t mean you need a gym membership. There are plenty of ways to be active for free.
  • Training Burnout (You Signed Up For What?!) – Such a great post that talks about exactly how I felt after NYC Marathon in November. Remember – it’s JUST a race!!
  • Training Tweaks For More Muscle Definition (Workout Nirvana) – Bookmarking this for myself because I really want to have more definition in my arms! I know I’m way stronger than I’ve ever been, but really want to see my triceps (as opposed to the “bat wings”)

Do you have a body part you’re working on for more definition?

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08-06-2014

Health & Fitness Links To Get You Through The Day

My birthday is exactly 1 week from today! But I don’t want to be 26 :( My friends and I are planning a beach trip for next weekend, so this week and next week just need to fly by ;)

Here are some great health & fitness links you need to check out!
 
Featured: 5 Ways To Speed Up Muscle Recovery (Marcia’s Healthy Slice) – These are great tips to utilize in your every day training. I totally agree with the supplements (and with all the tips), as I regularly take BCAAs and Glutamine to help recovery when I’m marathon training

  • 7 Ways To Stay Safe On A Run (Divas Run For Bling) – These are great to keep in mind next time you’re on a run. I’ve been reading too many articles about runners being attacked. It makes me kind of paranoid but also more aware of things I need to do for my own safety.
  • Swimming Tips For Beginners (Skinny Fitalicious) – I just started swimming last week. I’m sure my form is awful since I never took real lessons, so who knows what I’m doing. My goal is to swim once a week as cross-training!
  • Female Low Testosterone Epidemic (T-Nation) – This was a very interesting read on effects of birth control on testosterone.
  • Benefits Of Water Tracking Apps (Stay Healthy N Fit For You) – I really need to be better about drinking water. I love the concept of the Plant Nanny app!

Do you use a tracking app/any thing to track your water intake?

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