Advertisements

Finding the balance of physical and mental health through adventures and fitness

Monthly Archives: August 2015

Advertisements

Holy cow this week went by so fast! I mean work flew by, my workout flew by and I can’t believe today starts Week 3 of BBG. 

Let’s quickly recap, shall we? 

I start the new week of BBG on Saturdays, but some fun events had me double my workouts on Sunday. However, my Saturday was eventful and putting together furniture is actually a pretty good workout. 

My friend Jess was coming over for breakfast food for lunch, so naturally I had lunch food for breakfast. 

  

A burger made sense because I followed it up at lunch time with…

  
Round one was cardio at the gym and because it was a gorgeous day and I was able to get my BBG workout done at the park. Seriously, best idea I’ve had in a while. Awesome view and the breeze was great while I was drenched and dying. 

  
There was new art added to the Art in Park exhibit… It was interesting. 

  
I started the work week right with Pancake Monday. I tried a new flavor: peppermint mocha by Stack’d pancakes, pretty tasty and even better topped by Sweet Spreads Mint Chhocolate coconutter 😍😍😍😍😍 When Monday morning breakfast is on point I know that’s going to start the week off right. 

  
I also bought a new notebook for my workouts… I mean yes, this got me pumped.
    

Needless to say my Monday night threw me through a loop, but with some good friends I got my butt to Zumba and put in a 2 miler run. From Monday on though, my week has been strong. We all have our ups and downs and having my support system has made the difference. 

Transformation Tuesday with bed head was on point.

  

Until I got to my workout and I had forgotten my shirt… I sucked it up and got my workout in anyway. This kind of triggered a string of “brave” events. 
 

It led to my post on being brave and I’m proud to say some of my friends have been sharing their brave moments. Here’s mine: 

  
Our bodies are all different and make changes at different paces. I’m prod to say I’m a little less fluffy that I was 3 weeks ago (see photo below)

 
I’m figuring out how to balance my food, my workouts, work and date night. In fact last night was date night and I’m really freaking proud of myself. I was in control and felt great after yummy food consumption. This was dessert and we split it and brought the other cupcake home. 

  
Well, time to get my butt moving. Week 3 legs I’m coming for you. 

❤ Cristina 


My name is Cristina and I’m just like everyone else. I’ve had my ups and downs. I’ve had great successes and great failures. Sometimes I gather my courage and I pretend that I’m brave. I pretend I have confidence because maybe if I pretend enough, I’ll start believing it.

Here’s a glimpse at story.

The first photo is from my freshman year of college. I was 127 pounds and a size 5/6. College was the first time I wasn’t told what I could or couldn’t eat. It was the first time that I wasn’t told when to workout or when to practice. I did go cheerleading practice, but it wasn’t like middle school or high school when I danced competitively. Ultimately, hurting myself, not realizing that normal people who don’t dance 6 days a week need to be active and that I can’t just eat what I want because I want to, I put on a lot of weight – about 115 pounds. That’s a lot of weight

 

After packing on the pounds, I never thought I would be able to get it off, not even a little bit. Not only was I hard on myself, but others around me were hard on me too. It was easier to just keep eating and laugh it off. Looking back I realize I had an issue with binging. It was my way of coping, but at the time I didn’t see it that way.

This second picture is at the IGC hosted Midnight Breakfast my senior year of college. It was the end of the fall semester and the breakfast is an annual party hosted for the whole student body to relax. Think waffled from 9 pm to 1 am and lots of music. As you can see I was a very different person than I was during football season my freshman year. But that wasn’t the end of it.

I kept bringing on more pounds, and the heavier I got, the more convinced strangers were that I was pregnant. This not only made me feel horrible because I wasn’t, it made me realize that I was heavier than I was seeing in the mirror. Below is a photo from my senior ball in May 2011. I don’t even recognize that girl.

I wish I could say that the photo above was the worst, but I know it’s not. Below is a photo from my undergraduate commencement ceremony. She’s not the same girl, not physically, and she definitely wasn’t mentally. It’s easy to laugh things off, but inside I just couldn’t believe I had let it get to this point. I couldn’t believe that I was that hard on my body, that I just ate everything in sight. That I didn’t take the time to learn about health or nutrition. I didn’t even try. I just wanted to have a good time and that meant my body felt the consequences.

I take an awful lot of selfies, and I do so because I’m proud of the body Ive earned so far. There are definitely days when I’m not happy with myself, I’m not happy with this body, but then I see where I was and where I could still be and I realize that my bad today is no where near the bad it was before.

Today I was brave because I thought other people on this journey should see and understand that health looks different on so many people. Not everyone is perfect, and we’re not meant to be. Below is the picture I posted on my instagram account. I have loose skin form my weightloss because I hold my weight in my stomach. There’s some loose skin in my thighs too, but it’s not as noticeable. This body is frustrating, don’t get me wrong, but it’s mine and I’ve worked hard for it.

So today I was brave and showed you what I look like, what my real self looks like. Follow me on instagram at @runsweateatrepeat and tag me in a photo that you believe you’re being brave in. Show me your brave.

❤ Cristina

The other day I was asked what fuels my workouts. My immediate thought was food, food fuels my workouts – Oreo and pancake gains over here. The longer I thought about this I thought of a million different answers. So here are some of the ways I want to answer the question.

1. Fire in my heart fuels my workouts. Having grown up pretty thin as a teenager because of dancing I never thought I would gain weight in college and if I did, I never thought it would be so much. Once the weight started piling on I never thought it would be possible to lose it all or even a little of bit. Seeing my progress in the first few months of my journey where all I did was cut out food items that I didn’t truly need to nourish and fuel me such as pasta, soda, juice, chips and candy; I knew I could accomplish something small and maybe it had potential to turn into something great. There’s fire in me to achieve great things, not necessarily great by others’ standards, but great by my own because I had doubted myself just like those around me. I’m not willing to let myself down. I have standards that are too high for that nonsense.

2. Food fuels my workouts. Last summer when I first decided to prep for a competition I researched everything I could about bikini and bodybuilding shows. I realized I couldn’t afford everything, but I could make up for some things. I couldn’t afford a coach, but I could have conversations with people and then develop my own training based on personal progress and what others have tried. I had been given advice to try a fat burner, many competitors use them and they’re legal. I figured why not, it couldn’t hurt. Well, if you’re not hydrated enough nothing says hurt like a headache from your fat burner. Holy fuck. Now food fuels me. Black coffee is a great pre-workout for someone who wants a little boost in their fasted-cardio. A well-rounded nutrient dense meal can help rebuild your muscle fibers, prevent straining and injury and give you the energy you need to smash leg day. I do drink a protein powder – I prefer Cellucor’s whey. It’s easy on my stomach and the flavors are really good. It also dissolves really well in a blender bottle. Some other brands not so much. I follow flexible dieting, but mostly eat clean and try to eat 3-5 servings of fruits and veggies a day.

3. Other people sharing their journey’s pushes me to try new things, train harder and smarter. It inspires me that people who know what I’ve gone through, not just physically, but mentally, are on a similar path toward a healthier life. When I was at my heaviest I was told that I was never going to be skinny again. When I started lifting I was told I should stick to cardio. When I start training for my first 5K I was told yoga would be easier on a body my size. When I decided I wanted to compete I was told I was too fat to do so. Regardless of sharing my story on social media, I have heard a lot of “you can’t” sentences in real life. The people I have connected with on social media have heard similar things as well and we hear them more often because we’re so open with our journey’s. It’s not that “haters” don’t fuel my workout, but those who believe in me fuel it more. My friend Sarah – fit_badger15 on Instagram is a long-distance friend. We met on IG and actually text most days. When I feel like pushing through the last set is hard, she’s in my head. “What’s one more rep? Let’s finish the set. You can rest when you’re done.”

I’m sure for some people it’s a simple answer. “I use such and such pre-workout. I use such and such product. I’m a coach for such and such brand.” For me there’s more than a shake that fuels my workout, my lifestyle.

What fuels you?

❤ Cristina


I have a sweet tooth, but I try to keep it tame. I had been researching protein mug cakes on Pinterest because where else would I look for recipes like that. In my time searching I found two different pre-made, buy it now microwave muffins. The first is made by the fabulous people who bring us Power Cakes and Kodiak Cakes Pancake mix.

With a number of flavors on the shelf, my basic white girl came out and I immediately grabbed the pumpkin muffin… I may have also grabbed double chocolate because YES. Keep in mind this isn’t a type muffin that you bake in the oven. It’s much more dense and wayyy more moist. Add a little water, stir and microwave for 1 minute, give or take a few seconds and viola! Perfect pumpkin muffin and it’s only August.

Makers of Kodiak Cakes now make muffins!

The second muffin is one I actively sought out because it’s from Flap Jacked the makers of protein pancake mix that I buy religiously. These take 30 seconds in the microwave and are super fluffy and moist. They’re a lot more filling than you would imagine, but I suspect all that protein has something to do with it. Now if only they had a carrot cake one or pumpkin one with that much protein and I would be in heaven. These are new to their product line up, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed for new flavors in the future!

❤ Cristina


Today closes the first week back into BBG mode. I’m pleased with the circuits and totally forgot how much leg and cardio combo day kicks my ass. It’s not that I can’t handle squats or lunges, but the design of the circuit is definitely a mind-fuck for your legs. Before they realize what they’re doing, you’re done with the circuit and wipe out. My legs were a good sore until about Tuesday, but so be it. Progress doesn’t happen from sitting on your peach.

For two cardio days, I worked on running intervals. I have a timer that I use to set rounds. I do 20 rounds, 45 seconds of running with a 15 second break. Depending on how my legs and hips feel – mostly my hips – I vary the pace. Most days I start with a 6.1 or 6.2 on the treadmill and add .1 mph every few rounds until about 7.0. Other days I will stay between 6.2 and 6.7 and be happy. Regardless I try to get at least 2 miles in, even if it means a good run when the rounds are done. 4.14 miles added to my shoes this week.

My goal is to make all my cardio days, running days. I also want to start adding a few more rounds every few weeks to the intervals. I like how I feel when I run and finish a solid distance in good time. It’s the same feeling I get when I hit a new PR in lifting. Completely satisfied and ready to set a new goal.

I’ve planned out my meals for tomorrow and Saturday, and I will be working on Sunday’s meal plan tomorrow – since I do my grocery shopping on Saturdays.

Here’s my week in photos. What have you accomplished this week that you’re excited about?

 

#TransformationTuesday

#yolkporn

Post-run “my outfit is awesome” selfie


Baby biceps


#ThrowbackThursday post: Left- 240+, Middle: 175, Right: 153ish


Two weeks difference: July 21 v August 4

 

New goodies to try

 
❤ Cristina


My whole journey has been a string of figuring out what works for me at a specific time. Once I’ve figured it I stick to the plan as much as possible until it doesn’t work anymore and then I figure out what is going to work from there. The past month like I mentioned last time had been a pretty crazy roller coaster and I finally feel like I have a handle on things. This past week was great as far as food and workouts and I now have a plan going forward.

I had tried the Bikini Body Guide in April and had pretty great results, but I had gotten bored around week 10 because I missed heavy lifting. I had wanted to stick to the guide so much that I wasn’t doing much of my own workouts outside of the guides. That drove me crazy.

I decide to restart BBG because I’m not happy with the little donut that is around my lower waist. I have a few pieces of clothing that aren’t as comfortable as they were before and I know that I can’t just stay stagnant and hope that shit changes itself. You want change, you have to change. Well the past week I got a handle on my meals and yesterday I re-started BBG 1.0 with Legs and Cardio, my right glute is especially feeling it today. I also wrote out my meal plan for the week. There’s a woman I follow on IG, her handle is @leanneislosingit, and I’m taking a play from her book. She has pretty much the same menu every day. I’ve decided to do this for Monday through Thursday because if I know my macros are perfect, why mess with them. I will have a little more fun with my macros on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Monday

Breakfast

  • Kodiak Power Cakes + egg white in the mix
  • 1 whole egg + egg white on the side

Lunch

  • 1/4 brown rice
  • 6 ounces chicken breast
  • 85g broccoli
  • Wholly guacamole

Dinner

  • Healthy multigrain sandwich thin
  • Turkey burger
  • 1 slice of pepper jack cheese
  • 1/2T sriracha mayo
  • 85g brussels sprouts + 100g asparagus

Snacks

  • apple + 2T peanut butter
  • light and fit strawberry Greek yogurt
  • Whey protein shake
  • 15g caramel rice crisps

 

Tuesday – Thursday

Breakfast

  • 2 egg whites + 1 whole egg
  • Joseph’s pita + 2T fat free cream cheese + fresh salsa
  • 100g sweet potatoes

Lunch

  • 1/4 brown rice
  • 6 ounces chicken breast
  • 85g broccoli
  • Wholly guacamole

Dinner

  • Healthy multigrain sandwich thin
  • Turkey burger
  • 1 slice of pepper jack cheese
  • 1/2T sriracha mayo
  • 85g brussels sprouts + 100g asparagus

Snacks

  • apple + 2T peanut butter
  • light and fit strawberry Greek yogurt
  • Whey protein shake
  • 15g caramel rice crisps

After two weeks of driving to work with a real commute, I now have a good idea of what the evening drive looks like so I have a plan for my workout schedule.

Saturday is my day 1, or the equivalent of Monday’s on the guides, which means Friday is my rest day. This is pretty much perfect because evening traffic on a Friday in Massachusetts is about as much fun as having drinks in Hell. For the first six weeks of the guides I will be able to still fit in Zumba on Monday nights because Monday workouts are the equivalent to Wednesday’s Arms and Ab days, so my legs will be ready to go for some shimmy and shaking. Wednesday is equivalent to Friday’s total body workout and this is where I figured out I can add 3 sets of heavy squats and 3 sets of deadlifts. I may be a little extra sore on Thursday’s, but I can stretch it out during cardio. If I feel that I want to get more arm work done as well I can add some arm work on Sunday’s before cardio, since it’s after legs. I prefer to rotate the muscle groups I work and that’s why I was so nervous to add anything last time because when I did, I was crawling to the bathroom for a few days… No bueno.

 

First 6 Weeks

Saturday – legs and cardio

Sunday – cardio

Monday – arms and abs, Zumba class at night

Tuesday – cardio

Wednesday – full body, added squats and deadlifts

Thursday – cardio

Friday – rest day

As far cardio, the guides suggest light cardio especially for those who aren’t used to working out, but I prefer HIIT or interval running and sprints. I will probably add a lot more miles on my shoes this time around, but I know low intensity isn’t always a bad things either.

So here’s my comparison photos. The left is when I started BBG the first time, the middle is when I finished and the right is Day 1 – yesterday.


I’m basically back to where I was in April and it’s only a few pound difference from June, but I gain my weight in my middle. My goal is to get rid of the donut around my lower waist. It’s also to balance lifting and these guides. As my body gets adjusted to the soreness of the circuits again, I can better determine where else I can add in lifting. I don’t want to lose strength like I did last time, it was devastating to have to build back up to where I was and even now I don’t feel as confident that I’ve built back completely.

A last addition to my overall health is to set outside of fitness goals like giving myself time to read or going to the museum. Since I have one job now, I have a lot of time and because I’m getting my workouts in during the day on my lunch hour I have even more time at night. I’m hoping these goals will help keep me occupied and on track because I eat when I’m bored, let’s be honest a lot of us do.

August goals:

  1. better balance of lifting and BBG workouts
  2. hit macros every day
  3. discover a new hiking trail
  4. visit a new art museum
  5. consume at least 4 fruits and veggies a day
  6. blog moreeffectively

What are your goals for August? 

❤ Cristina