Monday, September 16, 2013

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Day 71

I definitely got back into the grind today, and I am feeling good!  I didn't stress over my weight gain today, and I actually felt pretty thin this morning.  The scale still had a higher number, but my measurements haven't changed, except for my hips.  This leads me to believe that the weight I gained isn't necessarily all fat, because if it was my waist measurements would definitely be larger.  I think my hips were about an inch bigger due to the double leg days I've been doing.  Squats are definitely doing their job!  Gains in all the right places!  I didn't feel deprived of food at all today.  I ate when I was hungry and had about 5 meals in total.

New workouts started this week as well, and the active rests and sprints have been replaced by super intense circuits.  Circuits are groups of exercises done in succession without resting in between.  You rest for 2-5 minutes after the circuit is complete before doing the circuit all the way through again.  I'm talking 150 reps per circuit, done 4 times.  I am not kidding when I say I felt like I was going to either puke or pass out through most of the workout.  My heart rate got to 173, which for me is extremely high, because my heart rate recovers fairly quickly.  It didn't go much lower than 140 throughout the entire workout, so I was definitely well within the fat loss zone!  If you want a kick ass leg workout, try this out for size:

Circuit (3-4 rounds--I did 4.):

  • Barbell Squats: 30 reps
  • Leg Press: 30 reps
  • Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift: 30 reps
  • Barbell Lunges: 30 reps
  • Calf Press on the Leg Press Machine: 30 reps
The only thing I had to adjust was the Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift.  During the first circuit at about rep 27 of deadlifts, my lower back started seizing up and my right hip got all tingly, so rather than pushing it, I dropped the deadlift reps down to 15 for the rest of the circuits.  I didn't have any problem after that, and I don't think it took much away from the intensity.  I also could have kept it at 30 reps and lowered the weight on the barbell for the same effect.  In about 45 minutes, I completed 4 rounds of the circuit and burned 396 calories.  Once the throw up feeling went away, I felt pretty good.  I am interested to see how the rest of the circuits will go this week.  I definitely like the intensity of them, and they seem to go by pretty fast.  The only trouble with circuits is in a busy gym, sometimes someone jumps on one of your machines when you're doing another part of the circuit.

Hope everyone had a successful start to their week.  I am just hoping mine goes by quickly, because I am super looking forward to Saturday already!  But first I have to get through 4 more workouts, an overnight, and two other work shifts!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Day 65-70

Honesty time.

I fell off the diet band wagon majorly this week.  I could list a ton of excuses, but I'm not going to.  The fact is I was just tired and sick of eating the same thing everyday.  I got a taste of high carb day after three days of eating less than 85 grams of carbs and couldn't get enough.  My body loves carbs, and I don't think it is best for me to lower my intake of them so much.  I should've realized this a long time ago.  I tried the Atkin's diet once, and it made me sick to my stomach not eating carbs.  So basically I haven't been tracking or eating as healthy for the past few days.  I went to a friend's wedding reception and had a few drinks and cake.  I may have gone a little overboard with the sweets, but when my body craves something, it craves it until it is completely satiated.

Therefore, I have been doing a lot of research.  Initially it started as research for what I plan on doing after the 12 week trainer is up, but I may choose to begin the diet portion of it slightly earlier.  The carb cycling is just not working for me.  I have been gaining weight, and I think it may be because of the binge eating mainly but also because I'm not used to eating the higher amount of calories.  This led me to believe that I may have done some damage to my metabolism by eating such low calorie amounts and exercising so intensely.  In order to fuel my metabolism fire, I found a more flexible diet that gradually increases caloric intake and carb intake in order to boost metabolism and lose weight.  It is part of the IIFYM movement or If It Fits Your Macros.  Check out for more details.  Basically macronutrients (carbs, proteins, fats) are scientifically calculated to fit your daily needs.  You eat mainly nutrient dense "healthy" foods, but you are allowed to fit in treats, or foods that are generally considered "bad" or "unhealthy" as long as they fit into your macros.  It is a more flexible diet plan that allows for life to happen.  With the cutting dieting I've been doing, I've struggled so much with feeling like I can't go out with friends or have dinner with my family, because there would be too much temptation.  I want to learn moderation and control.  I want to control the food, not let the food control me.

I am currently waiting for my personalized macros.  I had them calculated by an online coach.  The calculations will give me my macronutrient build-up through reverse dieting, then fat loss macros until I reach my goal weight.  It will be a longer process, but I think that will be better for me as well.  I don't have a deadline with reverse dieting to meet my goal weight, because it is more of a lifestyle change.  Whereas with this trainer, as the end of the 12 weeks gets nearer, I stress more and more over the fact that I haven't lost any weight, then I end up depriving myself more.  Deprivation is not the answer for me, because it just causes my body to rebel and binge.

I will be finishing out the trainer, but my posts for the next two weeks will be mostly about the workouts rather than the diet.  I won't be following the diet as closely in regard to the carb cycling.  I will be eating healthier again in order to fuel my body.  When my macro calculations come in, I will begin them.  I will also have a post about it in more detail when I know how it will work for me personally.  It is still pretty new to me, but I have seen the results in a lot of people.  Calories are calories no matter where they come from.  I need to learn how to properly feed my body and stoke the metabolic fire in order to promote better weight loss and meet my goals.  I'm building next summer's bikini body starting now!

Monday, September 9, 2013

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Day 64

I struggled to wake up today, but once I got up, I was ready to get back to the grind after a very satisfying cheat day.  The workout for today was the same as Monday of last week.  The only real change was in the diet plan.  For the last three weeks of the trainer, Jamie has you on a carb cycle.  You calculate how many carbs you eat for low carb days and high carb days on the website and then strive to meet those macros each day without going over.

Today was a low carb day, so my calculator told me to eat:

  • 1700 calories
  • 85 grams of carbs
  • 238 grams of protein
  • 45 grams of fat
I was extremely busy today with volunteering at the fair, so I did not get to these numbers.  I did not break my diet though, even when surrounded by all of that delicious fried fair food.  I'm a little behind on meal prep and need to do some grocery shopping, but I will do my best tomorrow with what I have and will not go over the macros.  Then Wednesday I am planning on doing some major meal prepping, so I can follow the diet exactly for the rest of the trainer.  I want to have the energy to complete the workouts and fuel my body.
I mentioned that I would have new goals after my cheat day, so here they are:

  • I am going to challenge myself to not eat peanut butter for three weeks, because I have a problem with moderation when it comes to peanut butter.  I am only going to allow myself PB2, which I mostly use in my protein shakes.
  • I will not go over my macros for any of the days in the next three weeks, and I will try to get as close to meeting them as possible.
  • By the end of the three weeks, I want to have a set plan in place for what I will do afterward.

I know this is an extremely short post, but I have been walking around and on my feet all day.  I am beat and ready for bed!

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Day 63

I was in need of this rest day, as well as the planned cheat day.  All week I was dragging and had zero energy.  But let me just tell you after smashing on some Olive Garden, I had the most energy I had all week.  I could have run a mile!

I started off my cheat day by heading to Starbucks before work for a Pumpkin Spice Latte and a Pumpkin Cheesecake muffin.  Both were absolutely delicious.  I had brown sugar pop tarts at work around lunch time, because I was saving up some belly room for my dinner.

I was insanely hungry and ready for Olive Garden.  We got our food, and I inhaled it so fast that I forgot to take a picture to post on here!  I enjoyed almost the entire plate plus two bowls of salad and four breadsticks.

After Olive Garden, we walked around the mall and did a little shopping to work off some of our food, so I could fully enjoy some Menchie's frozen yogurt.  Upon walking into Menchie's, my cheat day could not have become any more epic until I saw signs on the wall that said Peanut Butter Cup and Banana.

Yes you are seeing that correctly!  Some genius at Menchie's decided to combine the banana and PB cup flavors into a twist!  My three favorite flavors all in one!!  You best believe I was super excited for this, and it did not disappoint!

I had the banana/PB cup twist frozen yogurt and some cake batter yogurt, then I topped it off with cookie dough, brownie bits, Reese's pieces, Reese's cups, Andes mints, marshmallow fluff, peanut butter, hot fudge, and turtles.  I think that's everything!

Put a check mark next to this as a successful cheat day!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Days 61 & 62

This is going to be a brief post, because I am just absolutely mentally and physically exhausted!  This has been the hardest week of the trainer for me thus far.  I have fallen off the wagon the last couple of days with diet, because I just haven't had the energy to move.  And all I can think about his food.  Tomorrow's rest and epic cheat day is much needed.  I have never looked forward to NOT going to the gym so much in my life.  Don't get me wrong, I love working out, and the first couple days of this week, I felt amazing.  However, as the week drug on, I just got more and more sluggish and sore.  The workouts became harder and harder to complete.  I did them all though.  The only thing I chose not to do was the sprints for today.  I chose to do 15 minutes on the bike instead, because my knees had been taking a beating this week.  I felt they needed a little break.  I really don't want to re-injure myself.

I am hoping that after tomorrow I will be ready to go for Monday.  The diet plan changes on the trainer to a greater variety of foods, so I'm hoping that will help me out as well.  I will be doing my food prep on Monday, because I have the day off work and plan on doing nothing tomorrow but work and eat.  I will be posting about my cheat day with some lovely food porn photos.  Also, look forward to Monday's post with a look at the new changes in the diet plan and my new goals for the final three weeks!  Adios ladies and gentlemen!  This chick is going to bed!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Low Carb Snickers Cake

This is yet another Instagram recipe that I tried out on my co-workers during an overnight.  This recipe comes from @fitleankrystine.  Check her out for more yummy recipes.  I absolutely loved this cake.  I only made one, but on her Instagram, she made two cakes and layered them for a yummy looking double decker cake.

1/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 c coconut flour
1.5 t baking powder
1/2 t cinnamon

1/4 c melted coconut oil
4 eggs
3 T sugar free maple syrup, honey or agave (I used about 6 T Walden Farms pancake syrup, because I didn't think it was sweet enough with only 3.)
1 t vanilla extract (I used butter extract, because I was out of vanilla.)

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.  Combine the dry ingredients in a medium size bowl.  Next add in each of the wet ingredients and mix well with a hand blender.  Once the mixture is smooth, pour into an 8 inch round greased cake pan.  I don't have any round cake pans, so I just used a 9 x 9 square pan.  Fitleankrystine says to bake for 40 minutes in the 8 inch pan, but I only needed to bake mine for about 20 minutes before a knife came out clean.  So keep a close eye on it and take it out when you can stick a knife or tooth pick in the middle without any residue left on it when it is pulled out.

Next is my favorite part: the icing!  Be sure to let the cake cool completely before topping.  I baked mine, went to the gym, and then added the topping when I got home.

1/2 c plain non fat Greek yogurt
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
Stevia to taste
2 T Walden Farms caramel syrup

1 oz. crushed peanuts
2 T Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips

Since the cake is chocolate, the icing brings in the caramel element of a yummy Snickers bar.  Mix the yogurt, protein powder, Stevia and caramel syrup together.  Let it set in the fridge for roughly an hour.
I would suggest waiting to top the cake until right before you are going to serve it, because Greek yogurt can be very sensitive and separates.  Spoon the icing over the top of the cake.  Crush up your peanuts.  I put the peanuts in a Ziploc baggie and then smash it with the peanut container.
Finally sprinkle the peanuts and chocolate chips over the top of the icing.  Cut into 8 pieces and enjoy!

I highly suggest trying this recipe.  It is right up there with some of my favorite healthy desserts!

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Day 60

I cannot express how glad I was that today was leg day, and I didn't have to do sprints.  After working an overnight, I was super tired, and my body just aches from the last three days of workouts.  My legs were still sore from Monday, but I pushed through it and did a few extra stretches prior to working out.  I am feeling pretty okay right now sitting on my couch, but I will definitely be taking a warm, soothing bath and going to bed early.  I have to get up for work tomorrow and then working out right after, so I have a busy day tomorrow.

Today's leg workout has a pretty good focus on the glutes.  Now my butt is my favorite part of my body, and I have already noticed some BIG changes taking place in that area throughout this trainer.  With workouts like this, it will only get better!  I burned over 500 calories in an hour with this workout.  I know that I will be sore tomorrow, but I hope I won't be too sore.  Otherwise, sprints will be like death!  Wish me luck!

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Day 59

Day 59 was Chest, Shoulders, Abs and Sprints.  The thing I like most about phase 3 is the focus on specific muscle groups.  I have never been so sore in my life, but I am definitely starting to see more changes, especially in my face.  The workouts are killer, and to be honest, I dread going to the gym every day.  However once I'm there and I get started, I love it!!  I feel awesome sweating my ass off.  But I am counting down the days until a rest day.  I cannot wait.

I have had to make some adjustments, especially today, due to my knee.  I push myself to get through sprints, but I do adjust a little with the lifting.  For example, I tried to do the Plyo Kettlebell Push-ups, but the kettlebells at my gym aren't very stable to jump around on.  I chose to do regular push ups instead, so that I didn't miss the bell and smash my face on the ground.

I love the fact that I am dripping sweat after these workouts, and every day I cannot wait to see how I look by the end of this.  I have already lost a pound since my weigh in on Sunday.  I'm hoping to lose 2-3 pounds per week, but I am not going to get discouraged if that doesn't happen.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Day 58

Day 2 of Phase 3!  After yesterday's intense workout, I was a little bit iffy about today's workout, but I knew I had to get my butt into the gym and do it!  I was least looking forward to the sprints at the end.  Although I am quite proud of myself with how far I have come from the beginning of this trainer.  I feel like I am in really decent shape, and despite my knee hurting slightly during the sprints, I was surprised with how well I completed it.

For the back, arms, abs, and sprint workout, I again had to lower my weights a little with higher reps.  I also had to adjust a little bit with sprints due to my knee.  I don't want to over-stress my knee and re-injure it, so rather than doing my sprints at level 8, I moved it down to level 7, which was still intense but manageable.  Jamie says in the trainer that if you have joint problems, these higher intensity workouts can be taxing on them, so you should adjust to your needs.

I am icing my knee as I type this as an extra precaution as well, because I am bound and determined to make it through these four weeks at my best effort!  See you tomorrow with my daily workout as well as a recipe for Low Carb Snickers Cake!

LiveFit Trainer Phase 3 Day 57

Guess what!!!  It's Phase 3!!
Before I talk about day 57, I will talk briefly about the ideas behind phase 3.  Phase 3 combines weightlifting, high intensity interval training, and plyometrics.  All of the workouts include supersets and/or active rests.  An active rest means that rather than resting between sets of an exercise, you do some sort of plyometric or cardiovascular exercise like jump roping, burpees, squat jumps, or ab work.  The combination of exercises in such a way keeps your heart rate up and running to burn as much fat as possible.  Then on top of all of those heart pumping exercises, every day but leg days adds in high intensity interval training, which is a fancy way of saying you're going to do sprints (30 seconds on/30 seconds off).  The exercises are more specified to body parts, and once I get into week 10, I will begin carb cycling, which I will definitely describe in more detail when I get to that point.

Day 57's workout was Quads and Calves, a.k.a LEG DAY!!!  Let me just tell you that this workout was intense.  The workouts are also getting longer.

Throughout the whole thing, I was sure that the devil had created this workout, because I was dying!  However, after the workout was over, I felt absolutely AMAZING!  I was so proud of myself for finishing it!

I brought my own jump rope to the gym with me, because I didn't exactly know where the jump ropes were in my gym and didn't want to go searching for them.  I did have to lower some of my weights, since the reps were a lot higher than what I've been doing with these workouts.  Going from 8 reps to 15, 20 or 30 really drops the weight down.

I have not necessarily set any goals for the end of the trainer as yet.  I know that with these workouts I will definitely be using weight if I stay on point with my diet.  I may not meet my original goal of 125 pounds, but I am hoping to be in the 130's.

My main goal for this week is to complete all of the workouts and keep my diet on point with no slip ups even with an overnight mid week, because I am having another cheat day on my rest day this week.  My friends and I made plans to go to Olive Garden after phase 2 ended back when I completed Warrior Dash.  Olive Garden is my favorite restaurant, and I can't wait to go.  However, I want to put my all into this week, so I can deserve such a delicious cheat meal.  Then after that it is 3 more weeks left.  I already have plans to celebrate with my cousin in Columbus once my trainer is complete as well!

Have a great week everyone!  I can't believe I've made it to 3000 views!  Thank you for reading!

LiveFit Trainer Phase 2 Days 54-56

I have been super behind in posts lately due to working some odd shifts, but I am going to do roughly 3 posts today to make up for it and catch up!  The last three days of phase 2 were a piece of cake.  The workout for day 54 was legs, then on day 55 it was back/cardio with a rest day on day 56.  If you would like to look at the specific workouts check back in my feed, because they are the same as the workouts for week 7.

I worked my butt off all week and focused on my diet as much as possible this week.  I struggled with working a couple of overnights, because for some reason, if I don't get enough sleep, my body decides that it is super hungry and wants all the food!!!  I had a little mini binge on natural peanut butter, bananas, and Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel bread on day 54, but I tracked it in myfitnesspal and set a goal to burn off all of those extra calories with some additional cardio in the gym.  I have noticed that as I up my calories on the trainer, I don't feel the need to binge as much.  I am considering looking into reverse dieting to fix up my metabolism after this trainer is over in order to continue to up my calories and carb intake in order to make a more sustainable lifestyle change.

Well since phase 2 is over, I'm guessing some of you are wondering if I met my goal of not weighing myself for four weeks.  I did.  It was really hard, but I didn't weigh myself at all throughout phase 2.  When I did finally weigh myself on the final day, I realized exactly how much I care about that little number and how much I let it get to me when it shouldn't.  According to the scale, I gained 3.6 pounds in four weeks, which I was kind of disappointed about, but then I thought about my workouts and how I'm lifting A LOT more than I ever have.  I am seeing muscles I've never seen before on my body.  Therefore, I have determined that they are 3.6 pounds of muscle.  The fact that my measurements didn't get any bigger also leads me to believe I gained muscle rather than fat.

The biggest change I notice in my stomach is from the side view, but I know the next four weeks of phase 3 will just stoke the fat burning furnace and show off all of the muscle I've been gaining!  I cannot wait to see my results at the end!  Only 4 more weeks left!  Phase 3 here I come!