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

Tag Archives: motivation

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It’s been almost a month since I last blogged. I have been busy working my butt off! Here’s a recap of what I’ve done since we’ve talked :]

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I bought fun workout clothes :]

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My transformation has surprised the hell out of me!

 

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October 26, 2014: same shirt, 1 year difference

 

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October 26, 2014 (night lifting): got called manly in the gym, pssh manly my butt!

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October 27, 2014: 5 day out from show. 150 pounds.

 

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From June to October: 24 pounds down!

 

I had a few rough weeks (Week 4th and 3rd out from show) where I was having a hard time mentally handlingmy contest prep. It took a lot of conversations with my friend Monolina and sleeping to get over it and push myself to the next level. I’m the lightest weight I have been in 5 years, and I’m a size 6 again, almost a 4. The last time I was a size 6 I weight 25 pounds lighter than I do now. My body composition is so different than it was before and I have a lot more muscle. I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished and what I have proven to myself that I can do. There’s a few shows this spring and since I’m 15 pounds away from my weight goal, I think I’m going to work over the winter to shed more fat, and then start training for a second competition.

I’m officially 4 days away, and while I knew in the beginning I wouldn’t be the smallest woman on stage, I’ve learned that my size doesn’t completely matter. This has been a journey about myself and trying new things. While the competition part is about my body, this is an experience not many can have. I’m 91 pounds down in 34 months and I couldn’t be happier.

 

❤ Cristina

 


Short and sweet. Tonight’s post is all about the important numbers on mind.

5 weeks until my show. I can’t believe it’s almost here. I’m practically in disbelief. I have been busting my butt like crazy all summer.

23 pounds down. I can’t believe that since June 12th I’ve lost 23 pounds. I’m now a lover of heavy lifting and I will never be a cardio bunny again.

2 weeks until my boyfriend comes home. He lives 900 miles away and we get to see each other every few weeks. He’s supportive, but doesn’t completely understand that this show isn’t about beauty with weightloss, but strength and the ability to accomplish something powerful that many can’t do.

151 pounds. The weight I currently am.

145 pounds. The weight that I am determined to be in time for my show.

95 pounds. The amount of weight I will have lost when I hit 145 pounds as my new weight.

40 grams of fat I eat each day in order to burn fat.

140 grams of carbs I eat because I need fuel.

157 grams of protein I eat because my muscles need to rebuild once I tear them apart.

Cheers to kicking my ass for another 5 weeks. I can’t wait to post photos over the next few weeks!

 

❤ Cristina


I’m going to start out by saying that when I started bikini prep in June, I was optimistic, but terrified. I am driven by deadlines and goals; I thrive on a challenge. However, I was worried that I was my goals were hefty. I originally wanted to get down to 135 for this competition. I started at 174 pounds and have lost 19.5 in 13 weeks. At 154.5 pounds I am wearing a 6/8 depending on the article of clothing and a small or medium top, again depending on what it is. I have clothes from my freshmen year of college that fit better now and I weight around 30 pounds heavier. I never realized how much lean muscle mass I actually have or had the potential to build. With that being said I re-evaluated my goals and decided 145 pounds for this show would be considered success. I have 9.5 more pounds to go until I reach this goal and 8 weeks until the competition. I believe I can do it, 8 weeks is a ton of time.

In the first 85 days of competition prep this is what I accomplished:

  • 19.5 pounds loss
  • 3.5″ loss in waist
  • Down 1-2 dress sizes depending on article of clothing
  • Gained knowledge about nutrition and food as fuel
  • Learned even better time management
  • Built relationships and developed connections with other gym lovers
  • Gained confidence in and out of the gym
  • Increased strength

There are so many other things I have gained from lifting that are not physical. I smile way more often than I used to and I have learned to love myself through my ups and downs. While I have been working on self love for a while, lifting has really pushed me to understand myself better. This summer has been amazing and it’s sad that it’s over, but this fall is going to be equally awesome.

So my question for all of you is, if you had time or if you learned to make time, what could you or would you do with it? I never would have thought that in 85 days I would lose almost 20 pounds and be on my way to my first bikini competition.

Below are some new photos of my progress. Bring on the next 8 weeks!

 

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September 5, 2014. 154.5 pounds. Size 6/8 pant.

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20140906-171008-61808182.jpg❤ 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 never thought I would run a mile.

I never thought I would lose 70 pounds.

I never thought I would survive like clean eating.

I never thought I could do pull ups.

I never thought I could lift weights.

I never thought the changes I made to help myself would inspire other people, but now I want to inspire other people. It’s all about baby steps and finding what works for you. When it gets tough don’t look at the road ahead, look at how far you’ve come. As for me, 6 am comes a little too early and tomorrow is a double lifting day. Two circuits of shoulders, biceps and triceps before work and another two sets on my lunch hour. If it’s important, you’ll find the time. Have a great Sunday night and Monday morning :]

inspire❤ Cristina

 

 


Today was my second 5K run and I was so ready. Run or Dye here I come! Clothes laid out last night, bag packed, fun t-shirts made and drying. So ready. Here are some pictures from last night/ this morning.

 

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My shirt, front and back

 

I used Jerri Elle’s hash tag on the back of my shirt and I couldn’t believe how many people came up to me during the run to tell me they liked my shirt. It was unexpected, but made me feel really good as I was running.

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Running memes are completely necessary the morning of a run. Slightly serious and always funny, I feel like I’m going to crush it just by putting on my shoes.

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Waiting in line for the race to start. Now let me explain the shirt. I thought people would get it, but clearly I was wrong. It’s supposed to be like “Run, Forrest, Run”. Kristy, however, was confused and goes “I didn’t get it. I kept thinking Run Evergreen, Run Christmas tree.” Once I explained it, it made sense. So much for trying to be creative.

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Me and Kristy pre-race. I made her shirt say “Will run for wine.” I’m brilliant sometimes.

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More pre-race photos. There were 3,500 people running today. Not as many as the last one I did, but still a good number for the location of the race.

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Me and Kristy running by our offices. Our co-worker, Diane, came out to watch us run and she snapped some photos are we ran by! It was great having her support us!

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Post-race. Hey look at them shoulders forming. #progress #makinggains

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Me and Kristy post-race. I wish I had more color on me, but the color stations weren’t well manned. I think they had fewer volunteers than they wanted/needed.

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Last post-race photo!

run or dye

Here’s the route of the race… I will say this race was very unorganized. Worcester didn’t even block off streets for runners. Do you know how scary it is sharing the road with a truck that won’t move over in the lane designated for them? There weren’t enough cops guiding traffic or keeping us safe. At the beginning of the race, about a half mile in, we were stopped by a cop so he could let traffic threw. If you’re going to commit to hosting a race, then fully commit. 3,500 extra people in the city spending their money and time is probably worth it. Regardless, we ran farther than a 5K, so I’m super proud of Kristy and I for running a 15:24 mile pace with her back injury. I’m running at a 9:45 mile pace, but this was a fun run and after talking about what pace we would keep, we decided to stick together.

Today was a super busy day in Worcester. Not only was the Run or Dye 5K going on at Institute Park, The Food Truck Festival was going from 11 to 4 pm today a few blocks away. I went home and striped in the kitchen- the only place without carpet in my apartment, showered and scrubbed. Thankfully, almost all of the color came off my body and out of my hair. I did get pink powder up my nose, so I will not be using my nose spray today. Bring on the pink boogies! After I cleaned up and threw back some post-run protein, I packed up my lunch and headed to the Food Truck Festival.

Now, I know the point of the festival is to pig out on all sorts of goodies, but I’m clean eating and with 133 days until competition with a lot to lose, I’m not trying to cheat. My curiosity did get me hooked and that’s why I went. I stayed for about an hour and a half, mind you it’s probably about a third of a mile stretch, but I walked up and down a lot. I also took a bunch of pictures and tried to have some fun while not binging on the surrounding goodies.

Here are some of my favorite trucks.

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This truck is a family owned restaurant and primarily serves the Boston area, but they travel to various food truck festivals. They a variety from meatballs to mac and cheese.

 

 

 

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The Happy Taco truck is out of Gloucester and has a variety of tacos from your typical beef taco to smoked duck and baja fish tacos.

 

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Yep, a cookie truck. They had HUGE cookies and even had cookie ice cream sandwiches. You have no idea how hard it was to resist.

The Cookie Monstah truck look freakin’ awesome, and it made me realize that I need to find an alternative for cookie dough if I’m going to expect to last another 133 days. It was also giving me ideas for my cheat meal post competition.

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A festival wouldn’t be complete without empanadas :]

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Aside from cookies, I would’ve binged on a good old hot dog.

I grew up eating hot dogs and burgers, what kid doesn’t. But I grew up putting practically everything on them. Sauerkraut, relish, mustard, ketchup, onions, hell even mushrooms and peppers if it was kabasi. This truck had every kind of hot dog topping combination possible. It smelled awesome walking by.

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Does this one need an explanation?

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This truck is an extension of a restaurant that I’m going to have to visit!

There’s calamari, haddock sandwich, lobster roll… this list keeps going. Seafood goodness is in this truck. I may need to trip down to Wellesley to enjoy the restaurant.

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Yay ice cream truck, but it’s all about supporting local, fair trade and the best ingredients.

While I was walking around, I saw this woman, probably about my age with the most insane tattoo. I introduced myself and asked if I could take a picture because the tattoo was seriously the most awesome thing I had ever seen. She laughed and said I could and that most peope don’t ask they just do it. She said she went to Brooklyn over Easter and it took 9 hours in the chair to finish it.

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Since I wasn’t indulging in the food, I tried to find myself some fun and free stuff. Hood Cream had free coffee and ice coffee.I haven’t had coffee in over 2 weeks, but these were tiny 4 ounce cups and one cup wouldn’t kill me. Ok, I may have had two 4 ounce cups, with one cream each. While I was standing around I noticed they had a few things at their table: a free photo booth and a spin the wheel to get a prize.

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I’m a special kind of crazy.

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After spinning the wheel, I landed on a measuring spoon. Silly I know, but I don’t think you can ever have enough kitchen gadgets. I will say I was hopeful for the oven mitt, hhaha. What does that say about me? I can’t wait to use my little measuring spoon.

All in all, today was pretty awesome. I caught a bunch of sun too. I can’t wait to be able to enjoy the greasy goodness next year, but my $5 for walking around was well spent. This qualifies for Day 48 of 100 Happy Days.

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What kind of Saturday have you been having?

 

❤ Cristina

 


My friend posted on instagram that we she was going to start cutting out alcohol, soda and coffee from her diet; all at once. This is a big deal for her, and a big deal in general. Cutting things that we find to be vices can be difficult for anyone, no matter what it is. Lately, I’ve been on a coffee and alcohol kick: Iced Caramel Macchiato to Saranac Shandy brew. When I saw her post, I commented and said we should do it together. While alcohol hasn’t been a big part of her diet, she said that soda and coffee is something she’s drinking just to drink something, not because she’s craving it, but just because ‘why not’?

Not only are there a million things in these drinks that we can’t pronounce, there are a lot of empty calories that we have the ability to consume than if we were to just drink water with fruit or cucumber slices in it.

So here’s the challenge:

  1. 30 days of increased water intake
  2. No soda, coffee or alcohol of any kind- light beer means nothing here
  3. At least 60 ounces a day
  4. Report to each other throughout the challenge

I’m hoping this helps me reset from all the cream and sugar loaded drinks I’ve been consuming lately. I also am hopeful that it will help be de-bloat a bit. Other benefits from drinking water aside from hydration can be clearer skin, eating less, helps energize your muscles, help kidney function. I’m sure the list can continue on.

This brings me to today’s 100 Happy Days post. Day 29: friends who support you and who you can support. Body resetting with my college freshmen roommate. Ohio to Massachusetts, we’ve got this! #healthylifestyle #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar #restyourgut

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Here’s yesterday’s post too. Day 28: fluffy pillows and comfortable bed after a long day! Not everyone has this luxury and I’m grateful for it.

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❤ Cristina


This weekend was amazing and upsetting all at the same time.

After work on Friday I went out to Boston for the night and met amazing people. Over the course of the night I became frustrated and happy all at once. I got to spend time with a pretty awesome person, who may have acted a little silly after a few drinks, but all in good fun. That’s what overall health is though, the balance. Have your cocktail and pretend to be an upstanding adult. With little sleep we ventured into Saturday, the downfall came much later in the night, but there’s no need to talk about it- it’s in the past. But it influenced my Day 19: be you.

Even though it was a great day, with an awesome person, I was still having some struggles with myself. I saw this last night when I was laying in bed. I need to learn this. I need to understand this. I need to love me first and hope that someone else can love me someday too; flaws and all. When I can understand this, I can truly be happy. #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar #love #gettoknowme #ihavepersonility #immorethanmyflaws

Life is a moshposh of misunderstandings, over-communicating, running out our frustrations, under-communicating, eating healthy, binge eating pizza to heal our hearts, Jack Daniels, friends who listen to you cry on the phone, Lindt 50% off chocolate and Leo DiCaprio movies.

Day 20: friends who listen to you crying at 1030 am. Friends who let you leave voicemails at 1 am. Friends who bring you processed carbs and convince you pizza is a good idea for the night. Friends who will do shots with you and let you be a ridiculous mess because the world is too heavy for that day. Friends who remind you you’re a beautiful soul. Friends that remind you that you deserve the best. Friends that agree with you that Leo Di Caprio deserves an Oscar. #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar #love #friends #soulmates @samijimi @karinamoran_rn @kmcc89 @annranc @ccarync881

Sunday wasn’t much better, but I figured it couldn’t get worse and Monday would be better.

Well, hello it’s Monday and I’m doing what I do best to mend a cracked heart: run, sweat, eat, repeat.

 

Quick morning run around my neighborhood. Almost a solid mile, but holy hills!

As you all know, most places are closed for the holiday, and my gym has limited accessibility, so after my run I worked out with my free weights and did exercises that are effective, but take little or no equipment: squats, lunges, mountain climbers, etc. This is my Day 21: at home work outs prevent me from making excuses.

Day 21: post-run at home work out. The gym is closed today, but I have some weights at home and there are plenty of exercises that can be done without equipment. “Exercise gives you endorphins. endorphins make you happy. Happy people don’t just shoot their husbands, they just don’t.”- Elle Woods #mouthsofbabes #endorphins #onthemend #sweatitout #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar

For the rest of the day, I’m cleaning up and working on mending this cracked heart of mine. I do believe a new recipe will come from this. What are some of your favorite health-ish things to pig out on when you’re down and out? Suggestions are always welcome!

 

❤ Cristina


There’s a high possibility that I either developed allergies (I’ve never had them before) or I’m getting sick (I have body aches). Today was the first day of my 7-day vacation and I had a plan. It was an awesome plan. Laundry. Cleaning. Post Office. Zumba. I can tell you right now that other than getting my gym clothes on nothing on that list was accomplished. I did get some dishes done, but I feel like complete crap. So I napped almost all day. While that may not have been the best use of my time, I have 6 more days off to get stuff done and be on point.

After rolling out of bed for the 4th time, I made my bed. I’m less likely to nap in it if it’s made- I guess I’m weird like that. I worked on a second to-do list. This list is for my length of vacation. It includes all things healthy from making a new recipe to drop it like a squat and walking around my city. I live in within downtown limits, but I NEVER walk around, so I’m going to take advantage of these days off.

I made 25 cards with different tasks on them that I have to accomplish from now until next Thursday when I go back to work. I’m great with lists and I believe this will really keep me on track as well as give me something to motivate me to think outside of the box.

This is also my day 17. I love to-do lists. It just happens that mine is currently on my wall and not on a piece of paper :]

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What keeps you on track? Do lists help or hinder your day?

❤ Cristina