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

Category Archives: Gym Time

After a few moments where I had a breakdown in front of my fridge this morning due to lack of meal prep, I pulled myself together and reminded myself it’s Friday. It’s not just Friday, it’s casual Friday and you have PR’s to hit in the gym today. This got me pumped up for my after work hours, but I got a lot done today in the office, so I’m pretty pleased.

Today’s workout was all weight lifting with a rotation of all the circuits I do. I took a few things out because it wouldn’t sense to do 150 front plate raises, when I’m clearly doing other workouts for the same muscle group. Here is a list of the workouts I did, and yes I was bad and did some deadlifts anyway:

Straight leg deadlifts

DB shoulder press

DB curls

DB tricep extensions

DB delt skier kickbacks

Plate front raise

One arm cable curl

Triceps kickback

Upright row

Alternating DB deltoid raise

Tricep rope pushdown

Barbell rear deltoid row

DB reverse fly

Glute pulses

Push ups

Cable pull through

DB pullover

Butt ups

Plank row

Captain’s Chair leg raises

Cable chest press

I was definitely able to fit a lot into an hour and a half. I hit two PR’s. The first was the Captain’s Chair 4 sets of 10 reps of leg raises. My core strength has improved a lot, but I have A LOT of room for more improvement.

My second PR was not flipping shit on the person who invaded my workout bubble when I was dead lifting. I was seriously considering dropping the barbell on their foot :] Instead I moved my weights, papers, bottles and protein bar over… they then proceeded to make a big deal about me moving. I’m sorry for being an asshole and needing my space to lift.

Moving on. Here are some pictures from today including my weightloss progress! I’m officially down another pound bring the total to 12.5 pounds lost in 36 days. I’m super excited about this because while it is a lot, it’s steadily coming off and I’m keeping it off. I’m eating well and often. I can say I’ve never been happier.







On Friday’s we flex


Not too shabby


Back progress! 36 days!


I hope you all had a successful Friday and a great weekend! I’m going to sleep good tonight!

❤ Cristina



I’ve lost about 12 pounds in the first 35 days of this crazy adventure, and with 28 pounds to go and a little less than 16 weeks, I’m deciding to be a little daring. I’ve always relied heavily on cardio to shed pounds, but aside from my new Beachbody DVD set, I’m going to be strict with my weights. I’ve also been experiencing some knee tightness lately, which my chiropractor said is  from over working the muscle. Her example was the muscle around the knee is in something like a Charlie Horse, which causing it to tighten depending on the movement.

Most of the problem movements are squats and hard cardio. So my goal for tomorrow is to mix up the 10 different circuits I do over the course of my typical 3 days of lifting, but remove the cardio elements in between each set. While I will do some leg work, I’m going to avoid deadlifts and leg curls because those aggravate my knee the most. I’m going to add more core strengthening, and hopefully increase some of my weights. Here’s to new PR’s!

Hopefully I’ll be able to get some interesting shots and do my weigh in! Until then here’s a gem from the other night’s lifting session. I am awful at pull ups and I’m still developing my upper body strength, so this is a big deal for me!


❤ Cristina

I’ve gotten over my fear of lifting at my home gym, but the layout isn’t really friendly to the circuits I do. Since the gym at work is closed on Sunday in the summer, I rewrote a quick one circuit back/core routine. I had planned on going to Zumba post lifting, but had forgot that class was canceled today :/

Here’s the circuit, repeat 4 times.

10 reps Reverse Fly 12lb DB

8 (on each side) Crossover Reverse Lunge

10 reps Hyperextension with 25lb plate

5 (on each side) Plank Row with Pushup 12lb DB

10 reps Bent Over Barbell Row 50lb preweighted barbell

10 reps Stiff Leg Deadlift with 60lb preweighted barebell

10 reps Bent Over Barbell Row 50lb preweighted barbell

10 reps Stiff Leg Deadlift with 60lb preweighted barebell

46 minutes and 355 calories later… not too shabby. PR’d with 60lb stiff leg deadlift at 10 reps. I’ve been lifting 60 pounds, but I can now finish a set of 10 reps. I’m pretty excited about that and I can’t wait to be able to increase the weight in a few weeks.

Now onto food prep and heading into work.

Hope you all have a great Sunday!


❤ Cristina

Go big or go home, right? It’s leg day!

Circuit 1

10 reps of Body squats
10 reps of weighted squats with 10 pound plate
20 reps quick leg press with 60 pounds
20 dumbbell lunges with 10 pound weights (10 on each side)
10 reps stiff legged deadlift with 60 pound barbell
20 reps cable leg kick back with 12.5 pounds (10 on each side)
4 minutes of cardio: 30 seconds of jumping jacks alternating with 30 seconds of push ups totaling 4 minutes

Repeat circuit 3 times before moving on to next circuit

Circuit 2:

10 reps lying leg curls with 12.5 pounds
20 reps cable leg raises (10 on each side)
40 glute pulses (20 on each side)
40 calf raises (20 on each side)
2 minutes of cardio: 30 seconds of jumping jacks alternating with 30 seconds of push ups totaling 2 minutes

Repeat circuit 3 times before moving to next circuit

Circuit 3

20 reps box squat with 25 pound barbell
10 reps dumbbell step ups with 10 pound dumbbell
20 reps cable pull through with 17.5 pounds
No cardio

Repeat circuit 3 times before stretching


I worked out with a friend today who’s brand new to lifting so I was showing her through the circuits I do. We lessened the cardio between sets so she could really become more comfortable with the weights. I’m sure I can push close to 1,000 calories next time.

How did you celebrate hump day?

❤️ Cristina

It has been a great week of workouts, conversations and new food; and hell am I sore! I officially announced on my Facebook page that I’m going to be prepping for the bikini competition in Boston this October. I know I have some fat to lose before I can really lean out, but I’m going to try my hardest. Looking at a calendar today, I have 16 weeks to get my body in shape and ready. I think I can do this, but at first I didn’t. Let’s back up to the beginning of my week.

First here’s my Transformation Tuesday picture. Halloween of my Senior Year of college in 2010 and June 10, 2014. Definitely visible changes, especially in my face.


Day 36: fruit on sale. I love watermelon! #sweetsummertime


I talked with my good friend Caryn on Tuesday and I mentioned that I was interested in taking two different classes at my gym that night, but wasn’t sure which one. They’re back to back so Caryn suggested I go to both. So I did. Zumba and then yoga. I forgot my heart rate monitor, but with my age, height and weight, I should’ve burned 754 between the two classes. I was definitely happy that I went. Below is a picture post classes. This was also my Day 37 of 100 Happy Days. I’m happy to be making more changes, and hopefully, my body will start reflecting them.


I definitely think this quote is going to play a huge role over the next few months.

I had Wednesday night off, so I scheduled myself to take a small group training class at my gym. I signed up with a trainer named Matt. I’ve taken his classes before and I was skeptical I would be able to keep up, but I did. I recognized some of the women from the class I took with Tiana Ta and they all said if I could take her class, then I could handle this one. Holy circuits! We did all the workouts on the floor, which usually would make me feel awkward, but there were 8 of us doing them together. So I didn’t feel so bad about it. Below is a picture of my HRM post class. I couldn’t believe I survived this class, but I would definitely do again!


Small group training with Matt

I had yesterday and today off from my full-time job (yay for vacation day hoarding!) so I tried to be as productive as possible! I did Bikram yoga in the morning and a class called “Kick and Flex” similar to cardio kick boxing with my friend Sarah. She’s seriously such a great person and she’s willing to try crazy classes with me! We’re taking “Body by Matt” this coming Wednesday. Matt is the same Matt that taught the group training class I said I took this past Wednesday. Oh yeah, we’re going to be dead! Since I’m taking this class with Sarah, I won’t be doing the small group training. The photo of Sarah and I was also used for my Day 38 of 100 Happy Days.



Heading to Bikram Thursday morning




Me and Sarah post Kick and Flex class Thursday night

After speaking with a childhood friend Glorianna, who has also been on her own weightloss journey and runs her own social media for it, about old clothing I decided to dig through a box of old tees I kept with the hopes they would fit again. Glorianna had shared a picture from when we were 12 and in the 6th grade for Throwback Thursday. She kept the shirt and now she swims in it! It’s crazy. Check out the photo she shared herees

This was my Throwback Thursday photo. The tee is from September 2007, my freshmen year of college. So while it wasn’t 13 years old like hers was, a 7-year-old shirt still feels pretty damn good.


I took today off from the gym, but I’ll be back in the morning. I did have a productive day anyway though. I met with a woman my age, who has competed in two bikini competitions. Her name is Immy and she only lives 25 minutes from me. I couldn’t believe it because I found her on Instagram and then I found her Facebook page. Talking with her was awesome. It validated that my decision to try competing in a bikini competition is the right thing for me. It will give me a goal to help push me with my weight/fat loss, it will help me build confidence and it’s something I know I will be proud of in the end, no matter if I place or not. She told me about how she got started and how her past relationships effected her workouts. We talked about the mental aspect of working out and eating well. I’m so glad I found her and I’m glad I was daring enough to message her. I definitely think it’s going to be a great friendship and I’, so glad to have her support.


Along with new classes and new goals, I have new foods that I’m going to be incorporating in my diet as well as a new carrying case to do so. The beauty below is a 3 meal bag from 6 pack bags. It holds 3 meals, supplements and 4 full sized water bottles. It came with the food containers, supplement container and ice packs to keep it cold. It’s completely insulated like a cooler and I can’t wait to use it this week at work. Talk about a life saver.



Before I started eating paleo, my friends Kristy had me try this granola and I thought it was fantastic, but I could never find it when I went to the store. When I started eating paleo, I cut all grains and gluten or most, out of my diet. Since my goals have changed for prepping for this competition I am adding some grains back into my diet, but trying to stay as gluten free as possible. I don’t have a gluten intolerance, but I feel less bloated when I don’t consume gluten or processed carbohydrates likes pastas and breads. I don’t eat dairy either, partly from the paleo diet and partly I’m lactose intolerant, but I do eat plain Greek yogurt. This is the only dairy that doesn’t bother my stomach and the enzymes help with gut health. So what does Greek yogurt have to do with the new grains I’m adding to my diet? I bought the granola just for my yogurt since I get plain.

This specific kind of Bare Naked has 130 calories, 5g of fat, 13g of carbohydrates (3g dietary fiber, 6g sugar)  and 10g of protein. This will help make my yogurt snack more rounded.



I’ve tried quinoa one time and I was NOT a fan at all. After some conversations, I’m going to give it a try again. I found this blend at the store and I figure it might help with the texture issue I have with quinoa. I’m excited to pair this with some of my chicken meals.


Brussels sprouts. One vegetable I’ve never tried before. They’re low in calories and fat, very high in Vitamin C, there’s also a little bit of carbs Band protein in there. I bought a bag from the frozen food aisle and I checked before buying it. It’s only ingredient are the Brussels sprouts; you’d be surprised at how many frozen veggies have salt or sugar added when it’s not necessary.


All these food items were made into a collage for Day 39 of 100 Happy Days. I love trying new things, hopefully I figure out the best ways to cook these new items.

I’m super excited to get the ball rolling. I started using My Fitness Pal to help calculate how much food I’m consuming, mostly so I can keep my ratios of protein, carbs and fat. I’m trying to keep it at 40%, 40% and 20%. When I can get the hang of that and my weight routine down, I will change it to 50%, 30%, 20%.

I hope everyone else had a great week. Fingers crossed for a great weekend too!

❤ Cristina



Ok, so I set some hefty goals for this morning, and while I didn’t hit all the marks. I did pretty damn good :]



Timed run: 20 minutes

Weighted Squats

  • Goblet squats: 3 sets of 20
  • Plie squats: 3 sets of 20
  • Braced squats: 3 sets of 20

Dumb Bell Workouts: 8lbs dumb bell, 3 sets of 10 for each

Plank Row

Shoulder Press

Lateral Raise

Deltoid Raise

Rear Deltoid Raise

Biceps Curl

Hammer Curl



20 minute endurance run- 1.74 miles

Weighted Squats

Goblet squats 2 sets of 20

Plie squats 2 sets of 20

Dumb bell workouts- 5lbs weight

Lateral Raises 2 sets of 10

Shoulder Press 3 sets of 20

Hammer Curl 2 sets of 20

Bicep Curl 2 sets of 20

Deltoid Fly 3 sets of 10

Standing Row 3 sets of 10



My legs were so jello-y that continuing to squats would’ve resulted in poor form and possible injury. So I’m pleased with the sets I did accomplish, I just need to work back up to where I was. The standing row replaced plank row because I knew I wouldn’t be able to have correct form with how my legs were feeling. While I pushed through the fire in my muscles I didn’t do the rear deltoid raises either.

After two days off from running and 6 days off from weights, I’m not going to beat myself up for my body having a WTF moment.

Here’s some pictures from today’s work out.


A size 8 is in sight!


No too shabby!


Vanilla Paleo Protein with Coconut Milk, frozen blueberries and almond butter. I earned my shake today!


What have you done to kick start your weekend?

❤ Cristina

A few weeks ago I had bronchitis and after a 3 day dose of Z pack, I was feeling better, but not 100%. I did a couple of runs and some really long showers and my lungs were definitely opening up, but since my tonsillectomy in January, I haven’t been anywhere near 100%. I went to the doctor and turns out because of my lack of immune system, my sinuses are swollen, which is causing a lot of gross stuff to prevent my throat from completely healing. I can’t tell you how much I want to be better. Being sick is already not fun, but feeling 70% all the time really puts a damper on my workouts and lately my sleeping.

I definitely power napped this evening, not afternoon, evening. I seriously feel like an old lady. But here’s the plan to get back to 100%. My doctor is suggesting I take Benadryl before bed, Claritin when I wake up and a medication for my nose to bring down the swelling in my sinuses.

It’s only the first day and I can breathe better. I’m going to try to run tomorrow. I have definitely been slacking this week, and I know I need to be better, but the dizzy spell after my run the other day made me nervous, so a few days off was needed.

Saturday’s plan:


Timed run: 20 minutes

Weighted Squats

  • Goblet squats: 3 sets of 20
  • Plie squats: 3 sets of 20
  • Braced squats: 3 sets of 20

Dumb Bell Workouts: 8lbs dumb bell, 3 sets of 10 for each

Plank Row

Shoulder Press

Lateral Raise

Deltoid Raise

Rear Deltoid Raise

Biceps Curl

Hammer Curl


This should take up a solid hour; bring on the morning workout!

Well I’m off to bed. Fingers crossed on my recouping :]

❤ Cristina