Monday, May 30, 2016

Week Eight: Peak 10 Challenge #5

Oh my goodness!  This is the last week of my fifth Peak 10 Challenge!  Incredible!

Time has just flown by since life has been crazy these past two months.  I'm amazed that this Challenge is almost over.  Afterward, I'll have a week until vacation....and bikinis!

Monday: Peak Fit Pure Cardio + walk

I'm going to miss this workout after the Challenge.  It's so good and a lot of fun...until the lunge jumps start.  Ha!  After my rest day yesterday, I was good to go today so I hit this one hard.  And it felt good!  At lunch, I walked at the rec center.  I need to burn those calories like crazy this week!

Tuesday: Dozois' Total Body Cardio and Strength + weights

Time for strength today.  I really do love Michelle's C+S workout.  It works your entire body in 45 minutes - and you get the added benefit of cardio!  This morning it felt good to move and I even did the high-impact moves.  At lunch, I did weights at the rec and boy, those are effective.  I was feeling it before I even left the rec center.  

Wednesday: PeakFit Anytime Anywhere

Oh, boy.  The only thing that got me through this workout was knowing I was doing it for the last time for a long time.  After eight weeks, it still gets me.  It still almost kills me.  And it was especially harder this morning because the house was so hot.  Ugh.  At least I lost a lot of water weight.  At lunch, I walked outside for 20 minutes.

Thursday: Barrett's Grace and Gusto + stretch

I felt really bad this morning after a night of an upset stomach.  Thankfully, I'd planned on doing my stretch/light workout today instead of Friday.  Ellen Barrett's workout was perfect - not too much movement.  I did about 25 minutes of that workout and then had a nice, long stretch.  It felt good!

Friday:  Peak 10 Cardio Strength - Fat Blaster

A trip to the doctor this morning meant I had a bit more time….enough to squeeze in my weekly CS.  I chose to do this Fat Blaster edition because the peaks are a bit easier to conquer at 5:30am.  But overall, this is a tough workout.  And I can tell my body is getting tired after 8 weeks of Peak 10.  Let's hope it can make it another week before a week of vacation!

Saturday: PeakFit Fit Test + Peak 10 Cardio Interval Burn Remix

I had the whole weekend to do my Fit Test but I wanted to do it early enough so that I'd be a bit more energized.  So today it is.  I was happy with the results, though my numbers didn't increase all that much.  And that's okay.  I think my fitness level is just so much higher than it used to be….and it can't increase much more.  After that 25 minutes of peaks (whew!), I did 40 minutes of my favorite CIB.  I didn't do the peak moves but I kept up the intensity throughout.  But I was tired.  Ten minutes of stretching and planking and I was done.

Sunday: PeakFit Cardio Strength 2 + Ilyse's Groovy Dance Party

I was a bit short on time this morning but I managed to get in this CS - challenging but fun - and 15 minutes of Ilyse's dance workout.  It's amazing to me how much more difficult these workouts are in the summer, when the house is so much hotter.  I usually lose a pound of water weight in a workout.  Dang!

Calorie Counts:

I had four good days this week but then some bad ones.  With everything going on, it's just too hard to be good every day.  Sigh.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Two Weeks

In two weeks - well, actually, less than two weeks - we'll be in paradise!  

We have a birthday to celebrate as well as five years of marriage.  I'm hoping it'll be a great, relaxing time because we both need the break.  

Monday, May 23, 2016

Week Seven: Peak 10 Challenge #5

Oh my goodness....only two weeks left!   

After my trip to San Francisco, I'm really worrying about my weight.  And the next three weeks before vacation are going to be insane - social things and meals out... Sigh.  Let's hope I can find a balance.  

Monday: Dozois' Tip Top Shape + weights

I was not feeling well this morning. Thankfully, I made this workout as low-impact as possible....and still sweated up a storm!  Though I shouldn't do two weight sessions in one day, I did. I needed to get out of the office so I went and did weights at the rec.  It felt good since I still felt guilty about missing last week.  Ha!

Tuesday: Amy's Intervals + Cardio Intervals + walk

Time to alternate from Pure Cardio this week.  Amy's Intervals is so very different from Michelle's PeakFit.  And that's why I like it!  Twenty second on, 10 seconds off.  On and on....  It's tiring but a nice change of pace.  At lunch, I walked down to our favorite cafe near campus to meet a friend.  I like sneaking in 20 minutes of exercise!

Wednesday:  McLean's HIIT - Bodyweight Circuits

Ugh, Wednesdays.  This is the day I have to not think, just do.  And it works, usually.  I got through this workout with minimal pain but lots of sweat.  And it was the last time I'll have to do it for a while!  Yes!

Thursday: Dozois' Cardio Strength 1 + walk

So, life is happening.  I can't get an evening workout in this week so my additional CS had to happen this morning.  It's very difficult doing these on a weekday morning. And I can't get through it all....  But I did as much as time would allow.  And I'll try to do some extra work on Saturday.  I walked at the rec at lunch - a good break!

Friday: Peak 10 More Cardio Interval Burn + walk

I will not have time to work out on Sunday so that workout got shifted to today.  Yay.  None of the CSs or CIBs are easy in the morning, including this one.  But I really like it, which helps.  At lunch, I walked at the rec since the number on the scale scared me this morning.  

Saturday:  Peak 10 Cardio Strength

Wow, this morning was a challenge.  I warmed up for about 3-4 minutes before doing all of this CS.  Then, I finished the past two workouts I hadn't completed.  So, 10 minutes for CS 1 on Glo and 15 minutes from More CIB.  I cooled down by doing my own cardio and lunges for 5 minutes.  Then, ten minutes of stretching and ab work.  So, that's 90 minutes of cardio total.  Whew.  But I needed it because tomorrow….

Sunday: REST

….is a too-busy-to-workout-forced-rest-day.  I hate these.  But because of family obligations, I could not work out today.  Honestly, I think my body really needed to rest, though, so I won't complain too much.

Calorie Counts:

I had some really good eating days this week, staying below 1200 calories for three days.  When I weighed on Sunday morning, I was happy with the number, thought it's still not in my former "normal" range - by 1.9 pounds.  Sigh.  The problem is that life cannot be controlled and it's at it's craziest these days between work and home.  I'm happy I'm doing as well as I am when I can, honestly.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

San Francisco, Part 2

My tour of San Francisco was great.  One of our stops was Twin Peaks - a great place to see the city in all of its glory.  

Monday, May 16, 2016

Week Six: Peak 10 Challenge #5

Only three more weeks left in this Challenge!  And four weeks until I'm in a bikini!  Eek!

I'm going to be out of town Tuesday through Friday (San Francisco for a conference), so it'll be interesting to see how this works.  Usually, I have no problem getting up and working out, even on a trip.  Let's hope that trend continues.

Monday: Dozois' Total Body Cardio and Strength

This may be my only day with weights this week (except for the weekend) so I did Michelle's fun workout.  I love it....and I really love how easy plank walk ups are for me now!  Cool!  I meant to go the rec for more weights at lunch but work was crazy.  

Tuesday:  PeakFit Pure Cardio

A traveling day.  Once I got to San Francisco, I checked in early (thank goodness they had a room) and did Pure Cardio before my tour of the city began. I was crunched for time but I'm glad I got it done!  It wasn't easy since I did the whole thing (I usually have to skip 5 minutes) so I was proud of myself for getting through it.  

Wednesday: PeakFit Anytime Anywhere

My system is all screwed up with the time change.  I went to bed early so I got up early and did this workout.  I was going to do an additional Glo workout but the internet wouldn't work. So I did my own bodyweight exercises for ten minutes and then stretched.  Still a good workout!

Thursday:  Peak10 Cardio Interval Burn - Fat Blaster

Since I'm missing my additional Cardio Strength this week (I couldn't bring along my free weights to San Francisco), I did an additional CIB instead.  And let me tell you, in order to get up early while out of town to work out, there has to be very little dread factor in said workout.  So I chose to do this CIB again - though I'd done it over the weekend.  It really is a lot of fun and truly enjoy it.  So, 55 minutes of cardio followed by 10 minutes of stretching and abs.  

Friday:  Dozois' Barre Fusion

Ah, a light day.  I did this workout and added on a bit of stretching for 35 minutes of work.  This Fusion is like a condensed BodyFit 360.  Very good without being too long.  At the end, Michelle throws in some arm and ab work.  I wish there was a bit more stretching but overall, it's very good!

Saturday:  PeakFit Cardio Strength 2 + McLean's Cardio Hip Hop

After eating bad in San Francisco, I was back home today and ready to work hard.  This CS is tough but I really like it.  The last circuit always gets me - so very challenging!  I then did 25 minutes of McLean's dance, making as much high impact as I could.  I wanted to work hard and I did!  Then, 5 minutes with the 12-pound weights, ab work and a stretch.  

Sunday: Peak 10 Cardio Interval Burn

I didn't have as much time today to work out but I got through this CIB.  Whew!  It's another one of my favorites and it's tough. The peaks really get me, for some reason.  I did a full 10 minute stretch afterward.  

We're just not going to talk about calories this week.

Friday, May 13, 2016

San Francisco

Today I leave San Francisco.  I didn't get to see and do everything I wanted to (stupid work!), but to get to go for free is pretty neat.  All in all, I have a pretty great employer.  

Monday, May 9, 2016

Week Five: Peak 10 Challenge #5

I've made it halfway!  Wow!  Now comes the hard part.....

An additional Cardio Strength workout is needed these last four weeks.  I may miss one next week, due to a conference trip, so I did an extra last week.  But with the addition of that workout, my energy level really starts to suffer.  

So.....wish me luck!

Monday: Peak 10 Cardio Strength + walk

I was home sick from work today.  Ugh.  However, by the evening, I felt like I could get through a workout.  I chose to do my additional CS today since I had the time.  This CS was my first Peak workout ever so it holds a dear place in my heart.......and it usually tries to kill me.  Ha!  After the first 2 circuits, it gets a bit easier, but...ow.  I took a fifteen minute walk outside once I finished because the weather was just perfect.

Tuesday: Amy's Intervals + Cardio Intervals

This morning, after a rough night of sleep, I was noticeably lethargic.  I made my legs work, though, and got through all of Amy's Intervals.  Dang!  Then, about 10-15 minutes of Cardio Intervals to make up my 45-minute workout.  It's always nice to use these workouts as an alternate to Pure Cardio.  

Wednesday: McLean's HIIT - Bodyweight Circuits

Thankfully, I was well rested when I began this workout because it's such a challenge.  I shortened some of the floor work moves to get more steps with standing cardio.  It's cheating, in a way, since the floor work is what really makes this one so difficult for me...  So at some point I'll have to suck it up and do it all.  But this workout still gets me every time!

Thursday:  Dozois' Tip Top Shape + weights

No, I'm not supposed to do two rounds of weights in a day but sometimes it can't be helped.  I tried to take it easier this morning.  I jumped a bit but not too much.  But I just love Michelle's workout. At lunch, I dragged myself to the rec to do weights.  Every time, I'm so glad when it's over!

Friday:  Ilyse's Sweaty, Sassy, and Strong + BodyFit 360: Vol 3 - Athletic Conditioning (stretch) + walk

I basically warmed up today with 15 minutes of Ilyse's fun dance workout.  It's so light and fun….a great way to get moving at 5:30am.  Then, I did the full 20 minute stretch on the third volume of BodyFit 360.  I love it!  At lunch, I took a 20 minute walk outside.  Another gorgeous spring day!

Saturday:  Peak 10 Cardio Strength - Fat Blaster + Ilyse's Heart-Pumping Groove

Time to burn some serious calories!  I switched it up today with the CS Fat Blaster - the newest of Michelle's Peak 10 line.  It's highly choreographed but after a lot of times going through it, I finally feel comfortable with the moves.  But beware - the last circuit is the hardest!  Yikes!  After that, I did 20 minutes of Ilyse's dance workout.  Then, five minutes with my heavy weights followed by a nice stretch and sit-ups.

Sunday: Peak 10 Cardio Interval Burn - Fat Blaster

After doing the CS - Fat Blaster yesterday, it seemed only natural to do the CIB today.  And it was so much more fun than I remembered!  Some of the moves are from the CS and therefore familiar which is helpful considering the more complicated choreography.  But I had fun and that's always nice when working out!  Ab work and a stretch followed.

Calorie Counts:

Monday - 1192
Tuesday - 1440
Wednesday - 1198
Thursday - 1198
Friday - BAD
Saturday - 1235
Sunday - 1198

I had some good days this week - and some not too good.  It'll be worse next week, when I'm out of town so the last two weeks of this Challenge will have to be super healthy!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Sweet Potato Hash with Sage

Almost every Saturday, I cook a light meal for Mr. Higgins.  In the winter, it's usually soup and cornbread.  In the summer, it's generally veggies and potatoes or something.  We don't eat a lot of meat.

This past weekend, I wanted something different.  I happened upon a recipe for Sweet Potato Hash with Sage and thought to give it a try.

I made some substitutions/changes....  Red onion instead of green; no ham but a sprinkling of bacon bits.  I served the hash with some scrambled eggs.  

For my first hash, I claim this to be very successful.  Mr. Higgins gobbled it up and then took some from my plate.  I wasn't blown away by the sage and I thought it could have used a little something else....  But I'll keep this recipe and use it again!  

Give it a try at your next brunch or breakfast for dinner!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Week Four: Peak 10 Challenge #5

Almost halfway through this Challenge!  And six weeks until our vacation in the U.S.V.I.  Wow!!  That means it's time to buckle down and eat crazy healthy!!

Monday: Ilyse's Dance Intervals 101 + Heart-Pumping Groove

I'm so glad Ilyse was on my schedule this morning since I hardly slept at all last night.  I was exhausted.  But Ilyse got me moving very quickly with her intervals - so much jumping and running right away!  Whew!  I did all of that workout and then switched over to her Groove, which is much less intense.  I still tried to jump and jog to keep my heart rate up.  At lunch, I stayed in since I was so tired.

Tuesday:  PeakFit Pure Cardio + weights

Back to Pure Cardio this week!  I skipped to the end to get in all of the last circuit, which I usually have to cut short due to time.  That last circuit is the one with lunge jumps.  Oy.  But I did them all and moved on.  Yay!  At lunch I did weights at the rec center.  I still have no love of them but at least the weight room was relatively empty today.

Wednesday:  PeakFit Anytime Anywhere

I was so tired this morning - thankfully from sleeping very deeply - that this workout seemed impossible when I started.  But I persevered and got through it all!  I can't say it was easy, at least mentally, but it felt great afterward!  At lunch, I went to a talk about flexibility training - very interesting.

Thursday:  Dozois' Total Body Cardio and Strength + Cardio Strength 1 on Glo

So this morning, I got up and did Michelle's weight workout and kept it low-impact - super low because......  I realized I need to start my additional CS this week since I'll be at a conference in a few weeks and may miss that one.  Ugh.  I hate adding in the additional CS workout.  This is when I really start to feel this Challenge.  I got through it, after work, but it wasn't easy.  This CS was appealing because I did it over the weekend and hoped it would still be fresh in my mind.  It mostly was.

Friday: Bob Harper's Yoga for the Warrior

I needed little to no movement today and yoga sounded good. Bob Harper's yoga is effective without being too intense.  The link above is a clip since I still haven't reviewed it (sigh).  

Saturday:  PeakFit Cardio Strength 2 + Amy's Metabolic Meltdown

Tomorrow, my workout time will be limited so I need to hit it hard today.  I started with Michelle's CS….which may be my favorite CS ever.  Really, it's so well put together without having complex choreography.  Just a good workout!  After that, I did 25 minutes of Amy's cardio drills.  Whew!  Then, five minutes with the 12-pound dumbbells followed by abs and a nice stretch.  What a day!

Sunday:  Peak 10 More Cardio Interval Burn

I didn't have much time today so I had to work hard and work quickly.  This CIB does the trick - making me feel like death after the first circuit.  Ha!  It's a fun one, though, and after the first two circuits, I really enjoy it.   After that 55 minutes, I stretched, did some sit-ups, and called it a day.

Calorie Counts:

Monday - 1192
Tuesday - 1192
Wednesday - 1229
Thursday - 1445
Friday - 1198
Saturday - 1288
Sunday - BAD

Before my bad day on Sunday, I weighed - and I've finally lost weight!  Two pounds.  Awesome!!  If I can have my one splurge day, I'm good.  Yay!