Tag: fitness

Starting again with the 52 week challenge

The 52 week challenge is based off of the book by Brett Blumenthal: 52 small changes: One year to a happier, healthier you. I had started this challenge back in August of last year when I had finished the book, and had tried to post almost daily on how I was doing with the different challenges, and then I slowly stopped doing it.

So I’m going to take the challenge back up (the book never stated when you had to start—just that it may take longer than a year to get each challenge in). So in addition to the photography challenge, I’m going to (hopefully) post a recap for each week to share how I’ve done with that particular challenge.

The first challenge is the water challenge. This is a topic that everyone has an opinion—some agree that you should just drink the 8 to 10 glasses of 8oz (which will have you roughly somewhere between 64 and 80 oz of water a day), while others suggest that you try to drink half your body weight in water a day. Me—I’m in the first camp—I usually try to aim for at least 70oz of water a day (weekends are a particular challenging time for me in the regard). The main reason why I go with at least 70oz of water a day, I’ve tried to drink half my body weight in water a day, and usually fell short by 5 or more ounces (so its easier for me to say–get to at least 70 and you can stop for the day).

While I’m at work, I have a 20oz mug that I will fill up as close to the top as I can from the water fountain and drink from that (and I don’t refill until the mug is totally empty). I try to ensure that I drink at least three mugs (four if I can swing it) before heading home. Then when I’m at home I try to drink another 16 oz or so before, during, and after my workouts.

Like I said the weekends at times are the hardest for me in this regards because I sleep in (therefore am already at least an hour behind on the water), and I’m usually not on my feet as much, so therefore I’m at times not as thirsty. Though I have figured out that if I take the water bottles (when we have them) back to my room, that is motivation for me to try to drink them all before bed.

I also have tea (twice a day—caffeinated in the morning, and herbal at night), plus I put almond milk in my shakes—but I don’t really count those towards my daily hydration.

So I think I’m going strong with my water intake (plus I have it on my weekly habit tracker, that I try to drink at least 70oz a day, and if I fall short I make a note of how much I drank that day). So while I keep up with the water, I’m going to start trying to plan for the second challenge: which is making sure that you get enough sleep.

How do you make sure that you get enough water?

No Comments HealthPersonal Development Challenges

Living with HME (a silent and rare disorder)

So as I mentioned in a previous post, I was going to start sharing more of both my personal and professional development (to a degree).

One of the topics that I’ve touched on here and there on the blog is fitness. I’ve reviewed a program from Beachbody (Shift Shop), have shared one or two shakeology recipes, and mentioned how much I enjoy the programs.

Getting into the “best shape of my life” is both on my 101+ goal list, and just a basic goal in general. I’m not aiming at getting down to a size 2 or 0 (that isn’t in my bone structure), but just getting to a point where I’m happy with what I see in the mirror (so a size 8 or 10 [maybe a size 6] is what I’m aiming at).

So, where is this going you may ask? If we crossed paths on the streets, or if we’d gone to school together, you wouldn’t know just by looking that I’m dealing with a silent and rare disorder that affects 1 out about 75,000 people in the Western world. This disorder is one of the many reasons for my frustrations during public school years, and one reason why I never tried to participate in any type of team sports. It is also why I prefer doing workouts in the privacy of my own home. Read More

No Comments fitnessHealth

Tried the sneak peak of 80 Day Obsession, and planning my minimizing self challenge

Well this week Beachbody is doing something different with their on-demand workout platform. They are giving a week long streaming sneak peak of the new workout program that is coming in January, that is called 80 Day Obsession. This is Autumn Calabrese’s latest workout program for Beachbody. Now I have a love/hate relationship with Autumn’s 21 Day Fix and 21 Day Fix Extreme workout programs–I love them, but at the same time I hate them.

This is one of my more favorite memes when it comes to her workouts–during both 21 Day Fix and 21 Day Fix Extreme–the workouts were one minute–but it is one long minute.

So her newest program is of a similar fashion–but its 80 DAYS, instead of 21. The sneak peak today was a core focused workout–and I only managed about half of it (and that was even more modified than what the modifier was doing). I think this is going to be a really cool program, but since I’ve neglected my fitness regime for the past year or so–I know that I need to work up to doing this program.  Currently I’m doing a second round of T25 with Shawn T, and will be restarting week 3 tomorrow (last week wasn’t a good week). After I get through all three rounds of T25, I’m going to move on probably a hybrid program that will mix cardio with weight training (something that I miss doing), and hopefully by the summer be able to give Autumn’s new workout program the attention that it deserves.

So the other thing that I’m going to be trying to plan this week is a minimization challenge. I’ve realized that depending on how the job hunt goes (I do have a slightly informal job offer, and an Skype interview next week), I could be moving within the next two months. Now I have a lot of stuff in my storage unit that needs to get repacked, due to the fact that the boxes have been sitting in that storage unit for almost 5 years now, and the boxes are starting to fall in on themselves and the tape is starting to come off. The thing is I don’t want to be adding another 15-20 boxes into that jumble, and I’m not sure right now how many boxes it would take to pack up everything that I’ve acquired since moving in with my parents.

Over the next few weeks I’m going to work on lessening the amount of things I have to pack, though right now majority of it is clothes (which may be a little harder for me to part with), but we shall see what I’m able to do (or at least how I’m able to do creative packing). 🙂 Nothing is ever a quick fix, fast route, or easy solution. Trying to figure out where we should be, our dream job(s), and what our life should look like takes time, and the roads at time can curve back around and it will seem that we’ve ended up back at square one.

It isn’t square one in the same sense–you’ve been there before, and now can chose a different door (or window). Remember we are all in charge of our own futures (even if it doesn’t always seem that way).

No Comments fitnessPersonal Development

Another week to get back on track

Well somehow we’re halfway through October already?!? Two weeks from tomorrow is Halloween, and then there are only two months left in 2017. I’d realized this morning, that I’m probably not going to be hitting many of the goals that I set at the end of September for this month–the burpee challenge is going to get restarted come Nov–since I totally didn’t do any burpees while I was in London. Who knows where I will end up step wise–I’ve realized that on weekends that that there is a high probability that I’m going to spend most of it sitting on my butt and not get that many steps in.

Monday Motivation

But I am slowly getting back into to a routine–baby step by baby step. Today decided that I needed to pick a program that I know I can stick with–so I’m doing another round of Focus T25.

What is Focus T25 you ask?  It is a beachbody program that was designed by Shaun T a little over three years ago.  It was actually the first program (that I followed) that I saw weight loss with. It has three stages–alpha, beta, and gamma. Alpha and Beta are five week stages, and then Gamma is the last four week period–so yes, this is a fourteen week program–if you have all three rounds, which I do.

The workouts are only 25 minutes long (Hence the name T25), and vary–you have cardio, core, upper body, lower body, and then the full body workouts. What I love about these workouts is that there is a modifier, and I usually end up modifying a little bit more than she does, due to various reasons.  Lunges–nope, I try to figure out what to replace those with to make sure I’m working the same muscles, since the feet protest the pressure at times.

One thing about the first two rounds (alpha and beta) is that Fridays are a double workout–yep, instead of 25 minutes of hardcore workout–you have 50 minutes. Though you can always do the second workout on a Saturday if you aren’t able to do the double (which is what I’ll probably do at least for the first week or so).

I know that I also need to start getting my nutrition back on track as well. One problem that I have is that I have a really bad sweet tooth–and while I know I can get it under control, if I give it a little bit of leg room, it will take a mile. So one goal is to slowly start getting the sweet tooth under control and cutting back on the snacks (that aren’t healthy–fruits and nuts and such) will help.

Diet is one word that needs to get replaced in conversations–when trying to get healthy and fit–we need to say we’re trying to make a lifestyle change. We’re trying to change the way we eat. Am I still going to have sweets–probably, but I’ll try to make them a little healthier than what I did in the past.

That has been the number one reason why I think I’ve gained all the weight (and then a little extra) back–I didn’t exchange diet for lifestyle change.

But baby steps are being taken, as I remind myself–this is a journey–it doesn’t matter how slow I take it–there is no finish line to race towards, but a path that is an adventure that I need to slow down and enjoy.


No Comments fitnessHealthPersonal Development

October Fitness Challenge

Well since tomorrow is a new month–new challenge.  I decided that I’d try to focus on an exercise that I didn’t like mainly because I wasn’t that good at it. So this month its going to be burpees.  There are two ways that one can do the burpees–squat down, and then jump back into the plank position and then jump back into the squat and jump up (this is what I’m calling the advanced form and what I’m hoping I may be able to do at the end of the month–at least being able to do a 1/5 of them this way) and then the more basic–squat down, and then step back into the plank position, and then step back into the squat and then do a calf raise (or you can do a mini jump).

The fitness challenge for the month of October–Burpees.
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Reflecting back on September…….

Well tomorrow is yet another new month, the planet continues it orbit around the sun (though I’d swear some days are longer than others)—but where did the month go??? According to the calendar we’ve entered the fall season, which is my second favorite season (right behind spring). Hopefully the temperatures will start to agree and stay out of the 90s.

Sunset caught after getting of the T one night in Boston.

Though one thing this month I didn’t do was actually committing to a workout program—I just couldn’t find the mindset or the workout that appealed to me (Going to be working on this one for awhile). I’m thinking that I’ve probably gained a pound or two back this month—stress and worry can do that, especially when you have a sweet tooth that you let run wild.

I did make it through the monthly squat challenge—today was actually a combo day to get the last two days in (though I did managed some yesterday)—so yes I basically did 200 squats throughout the day today.

I again came close to my monthly step goal of 300,000. Again stress and worry had me sitting on my butt a couple of days (and I have realized that I tend to be more sedentary on the weekends), and I’m basically down two days (more or less). If I manage 12,000 steps/day for the rest of the year I may be able to break 4 million by Dec 31st.

It was also my birthday this month, which means that I’m yet another year older, but not any closer to figuring out what I want to do with my life. I’ve been doing both personal and professional development this month working on that question, and I’m not sure I’m any closer to figuring out the answer today than I was at the beginning of the month. Read More

No Comments Month in ReviewPersonal Development

Reflecting on the past year……

I bet you’ve clicked on this post because of the title—right? Or I may be wrong. But it is a catchy title…

So Wednesday was the birthday, and I’ve taken the past couple of days trying to reflect on the past year, how things have gone, what I want to change (or what needs to change), and where would I like to be by my birthday next year. I’ve been doing a lot of reading of personal development books since the job ended July 31st, and several of them have gotten me thinking about my career.


I love science, the research (not so much the hours or low pay), the collaborative environment that most academic places have, and just always getting to meet new people. One drawback on that is—scientific research is really the only thing I know (not counting the paper route that I had as a kid), I’ve been doing research in some form since I was a senior in high school—so basically half my life (or a little over that now) has been spent in a lab doing something.  Read More

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