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Sunday, August 30, 2009

30 Days of Fitness- Week 4 Update

Last week I had the goal to refrain from eating past 6 pm. I had a really hard time with it and most of the days I did eat past 6. I decided to ease up on myself and just do whatever felt best. As soon as I let myself "off the hook" I suddenly lost the desire to eat past 6. Go figure! I think it has something to do with the mindset of "I MUST" versus "I CHOOSE". Heck, even I get confused by my mind. I can sympathize with the men on the weird workings of a woman's mind. :)

My Goals
Wk 1: walk 5 miles + 2 90 min yoga sessions
Wk 2: walk 10 miles + 90 min yoga sessions + drink 96 oz H20
Wk 3: walk 15 miles + 2 90 min yoga sessions+ no food past 6 pm
Wk 4: walk 20 miles + 2 90 min yoga sessions + try again on no food past 6 pm

Day 22
Completed a 4 mile walk
No food past 6 pm
96 oz H20

Day 23- Got my A$$ kicked in Power Yoga
2 mile walk
Completed 2 hours of power yoga - holy smokes I was drenched in sweat along w/ my mat & hand towel. I practically looked like I got out of the shower and put on my wet clothes straight out of the washing machine. Although this may sound gross to some of you, it felt like bliss. I was literally stoned on oxygen. I haven't been to my favorite Sunday class in ages and man, I was worked so intensely that I was seriously blissed out. I don't think anything could have upset me. I had no energy for it. Angry or frustrated peeps- give power yoga a shot. It'll take the fight right out of ya! ;)
96 oz H20
No food past 6 pm- I went to Raw by Juliano in Santa Monica. I haven't been in about 6 months. I shared a shake (dunno which one) which was really good, the Ariel salad (made w/ seaweeds and spirulina along w/ other greens (tasted fantastic), spring rolls (a fav of mine), and of course my all time fave: Strawberry Mousse (practically orgasmic!) I always get great raw food there!

Day 24- Feeling a bit sore from yoga
4 mile walk- I haven't been running lately because my knees have been a bit sore.
96 oz H20
No food past 6

Day 25- My friend told me my butt was looking perkier!
6 mile walk
96 oz H20
No food past 6

Day 26- A bit of fat held my appetite today
90 min yoga
4 mile walk
96 oz H20
No food past 6 - I actually ate a bit more fat this day and my last meal was at 1:15 pm. I made these yummy raw vegan "brownie bites" w/ my kids. The base was nut & I think it held my appetite longer. I had about 3 Tablespoons worth. Every now and then a little fat in the diet feels good as long as it's my last meal of the day. Plus I made a pesto (more fat) w/ beet noodles and marinara w/ zucchini noodles & then just mixed them together. Yum! I won't let too much fat be a regular part of my diet, just here and there.

Day 27- My tummy is looking flatter (prob because no food past 6 )
Walk- 6 miles
96 oz H20
No food past 6- I really wanted to eat late because I found that I am sleeping about 2 hours less a night by not consuming food past 6 pm. I just feel light and alert even into the late hours. I found it hard to sleep this night. I never felt like I really slept, just rested. Reminded me of how I felt on extended fasts and I slept very little perhaps 2-3 hours a night.

Day 28- I made it another week! Feeling like a champ right now.
Walk- 6 miles - My knees are still achey, either from adapting to all the walking or the fact that I am walking and was running on concrete.
96 oz H20
No food past 6 pm- Woo hoo! I made it a week without eating past 6. I have to say this does have a profound affect on my appetite, my energy, my metal clarity, and really aids in weight loss. This is definitely something that is crucial in my weight loss journey.

Completed Goals
Walk- 32 miles WOW! That's 12 miles more than I planned on getting in. I felt that I had to add more walking to make up for the fact that I wasn't running this week.
Yoga- 2 1/2 hours in 2 sessions
H20- 96 0z everyday! I felt best when I had 48 oz before I even had breakfast.
No food past 6 pm every day. This really made a difference in my gut health. I felt that this kept my appetite in control. Perhaps it allowed more time for my tummy to shrink. I am known to be able to eat major quantities of food, which is why 80/10/10 seems to work well when I adhere to it.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

30 Days of Fitness- Week 3 Update

This 30 Day Challenge was to get me to workout everyday for 30 days even if it was just a short walk everyday. I found that each week just inspired me to take one more step and to add another goal. Here is what I have added so far.

Week 1 Goal: walk 5 miles & do 2 90 min yoga sessions
Week 2: same as week 1, plus 5 miles & drink 96 oz H20
Week 3: same as week 2, plus 5 miles & no food past 6pm

Week 3 Goals
15 miles total run/walk
2- 90 min yoga sessions
96 oz H20 daily
No food past 6

Day 15
5 Mile walk/run in 53:50 WOO HOO!
(getting better everytime, but boy does it kick my booty!)
drank 96 oz H20
did not eat after 6- woo hoo!

Day 16
3 hour Acro Yoga Workshop
(SOOOO fun! Met 2 other girls there that live local & are raw foodists!)
drank 96 oz H2O
I ate a bowl of veggie soup around 7:30- oops! So much for no food past 6

Day 17
4 mile easy walk (not timed)
I didn't get all my water in for the day ( I think I had about 50 oz)
I ate past 6 again, darn it! This time it was social eating. I need to keep social activities ACTIVE and not revolving around food. Maybe tea would be a better way to sit and chat. :)

Day 18
5 mile run/walk: 54:35
Ate past six again & didn't drink all my water either

Day 19
90 min power yoga class
96 oz H20
I ate after 6 again. ;( I think this is a reason my weight isn't where I want it to be. I didn't know I ate after 6 so many times in the week.

Day 20
3 mile walk
2 mile run
Forgot to track water intake today
No food past 6 pm! WOO HOO!

Day 21
4 mile walk
Forgot to track water intake again...DOH!
I ate after 6 pm ...a weight gain culprit has been discovered.

23 mles total run/walk
1 - 90 min power yoga session
3 hour acro-yoga workshop
Messed up on water tracking
I ate past 6 most days of the week so I will be working on that again this week.

I am thrilled I have exercised 21 days consecutively! My cardio is improving faster than I expected. I know I didn't meet the goal of not eating past 6, but that's OK. I'll just be more aware of it this upcoming week. I'll evetually get there. ;)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Financial Slavery & Financial Freedom

Being born just an hour from Independence Day, I'd like to think I have a strong drive to live a free life. Going to school we were taught the horrid truth of slavery between nations. I would think to myself, "WOW, I am so glad I didn't have to live through that!" Then the thought years later occurred to me. I AM A SLAVE. I walked into the perfect trap set up by the system that runs our country. There are many forms of slavery and in this situation it is financial slavery.

Here is the Typical Trap
We go to school to get good grades to go to a great college to get a great career. Along the way, we find that we "need" a car and get ourselves a lovely little car payment. Then we get our school loans, but that's OK because we have 5 years before we have to start paying on them and we are sure we'll be rolling in the dough by that time. Some of us even decide that we aren't going to work so we can really focus on school. That's OK because we can just roll those expenses into the school loan. Somewhere along the road we find ourselves in love. We want a big white wedding. Uh oh....the parents aren't fronting the bill? That's OK, we can charge some of the items. Now it's time for a home with a cute little mortgage and how 'bout starting a family in a few years? That'll do the trick. Then how about a few vacations to "get away from it all". Or perhaps we feel so trapped or depressed we end up spending more money just trying to feel good. So, with this typical plan we find ourself with an auto loan, a couple credit cards, a mortgage, some student loans and heaven forbid we have any medical bills. It can take a lifetime to pay it off and ya know, that's exactly what they want you to do. ;)

Debt = Slavery
I was financially dumb. I learned the hard way. I definitely won't put my kids in that state of ignorance. Why is it that personal finance is not mandatory in our public school system? Simply because there is too much money to be made from people who are financially ignorant. It's time to take our finances into our own hands, because credit card debt is another form of slavery. Ignorance is not bliss, never has been, never will be.

My Story With Debt
I have personally experienced financial distress. I started feeling "grown up" with my very first credit card at 18 when I started college. My first year, I received 2 credit cards and a car loan. Over the next few years I had accumulated over 13 credit cards and 2 private loans. At the time I was an exotic dancer and felt that I could pay off each card at any time. Well, not much later I was pregnant and no longer able to continue dancing. So I went from about $13,ooo (over 12 years ago) a month to NOTHING. If I was smart I really could have put that money to good use rather than blowing it on who knows what. I stopped paying on all my credit cards and boy was I in a mess for about 10 years. Now I am out of the bad credit zone, but have accumulated some debt. It's amazing how just a small amount of debt can wear at one. It's like a little itch that you just can't get rid of.

Debt & Spirituality
As Wayne Dyer says,"Debt is decidedly unspiritual" and I couldn't agree more. It blocks the connection to spirit. Perhaps it has something to do with tension and tightening the DNA (as discussed in a previous blog: Science of Miracles) which closes us off to miracles.

Here is a documentary on financial slavery called "Maxed Out". Hope you enjoy it.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Part 8

Part 9

Now if you are still thinking about credit card debt. Read this article that I just received today.

New Credit Card Laws = Consumers getting screwed (again)!
Americans with the best credit may be hurt the most as the first phase of a credit-card reform bill takes effect tomorrow. Lenders are raising rates across the board, The market has changed so much in the past six months that many consumers shopping around for new cards will have trouble finding a better deal,. You may be better off holding onto your cards until the market settles down.
Rates are about 20 percent higher than in December with the lowest median rate at 11.99% now, compared with 9.99% in December. Another stab in the consumers back is that those who choose to reject a rate increase within 45 days will have two options at the banks discretion -- to pay off the balance in five years, or double the current minimum payment!
Banks have been raising rates on consumers at the same time that their own borrowing costs are decreasing, giving them bigger marginal lending rates and more profits, is all this part of that "spreading the wealth around"?
Credit will continue to be less available, borrowing limits will be lower and consumers will pay more. In addition, there will be more annual fees, higher fees for balance transfers and cash advances, and pared- back rewards programs. They (the credit card companies) are lowering limits and closing accounts to reduce their long-term risks.
Banks have already implemented parts of the credit card law and some of the major lenders have dropped "universal default", the practice of raising interest rates based on a missed payment with another company and have stopped double-cycle billing where lenders calculate finance charges based on more than one billing cycle.
So I guess we all need to keep a weary eye on our statements and perhaps the only way to get even is to stop doing business with those companies that are the worst. Even at the cost of lowering our credit scores!
Sad affair is it not?

A Great Solution by Dave Ramsey

I was directed to Dave Ramsey by my friend, Dhrumil. He has so much information out there about debt and living on cash only! Listen to this great call.

Can You Scream, "I AM DEBT FREE!"?
I can't right now, but I am getting close. I have until January until my car is fully paid off. I have made the commitment that I would keep my car until I could pay cash for a new one. Aside from that I have one credit card with a balance just over $9200. Earlier this year I had 3 credit cards, but this was the highest balance. I also sold my home. My children's father was looking to buy a home and I was looking to sell mine. It just seemed that the timing was right. The cool thing is that my kids get to stay in the same home that they have lived in the past 4 1/2 years. So it was a super simple transition. Little by little I am chipping away at my debt. Pretty soon I will be looking at accumulating wealth through multiple streams of passive income. I'll post more on that another time.

For me this is about getting myself out of all the little traps that I have created and walked into. Whether it is my health, my finances, my relationships, my career or so forth. It's about breaking free and living a life without boundaries and limits. It's about discovering and living true freedom. I think I am done breastfeeding off the system if you know what I mean. ;)

Until then... cheers to all forms of freedom!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

30 Days of Fitness- Week 2 Update

Week 2 Workout Wrap Up
I added another goal of consuming 96 oz. of water daily. It's summertime and with all the extra working out I really feel hydration is key. Normally I go for 1/2 my body weight in ounces, but find sometimes I stay out of the fridge more if I am drinking more water. :)

10 miles of walking/running
2- 90 min yoga sessions
Drink 96 oz water daily (weekly total: 5.25 gallons)

Completed Weekly Total
20 miles- Walk/Run
2- 90 min Yoga Sessions
1- pool cardio exercises,
1- 45 min easy stretch yoga
5.25 gallons of water

Day 8
3 mile walk
96 oz H2O

Day 9
5 mile run/walk in 60:05
96 oz H2O

Day 10
90 min yoga session
3 mile walk/run
96 oz H2O

Day 11
4 mile walk
96 H2O

Day 12
5 mile run/walk: 55:50
96 oz H2O

Day 13
90 min yoga session
96 oz H2O

Day 14
30 min pool workout
45 min easy yoga stretch class

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Science of Miracles

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3
Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

I watched this today and felt compelled to share this with you. I know sometimes we don't feel we have the time to sit and watch something like this, but I encourage you to find the time. It will be well spent.

Yesterday I was given two gifts from friends. One was called a "prayer box" necklace and another was a framed quote saying "All we need is love". The timing couldn't be more perfect to watch this film. I had my children watch it with me because I feel it is important for them to understand their own power in their lives.

For many of my growing up years of my life I felt unempowered. I felt if only circumstances were different then I could have the life I had dreamed of. Why was it I was given the hard knock life and others seems to be living it up? I would have thoughts like, " Oh, if I was just prettier" or "If I had more money", or "If I lived in a better community then I would have more opportunities in life". I felt like the power to live my dreams and life were beyond me and sent like a wish in a prayer.

Now, many years later I have been fortunate enough (or blessed) to stumble upon information that left me feeling empowered. Some of these resources are:
Power vs Force: The Hidden Determinants of Human Behavior
Being In Balance: 9 Principles for Creating Habits to Match Your Desires
Ask and It Is Given: Learning to Manifest Your Desires
The Secret
What the Bleep Do We Know!?
The 8th Habit Personal Workbook: Strategies to Take You from Effectiveness to Greatness
The Science of Getting Rich: The Original Guide to Manifesting Wealth Through the Secret Law of Attraction
The Mastery of Love: A Practical Guide to the Art of Relationship: A Toltec Wisdom Book

I feel like these resources gave me to tools to apply in my life and feel empowered. It has nothing to do with race, gender, age, appearance, money, status, or location. It is all within and that sensation is priceless.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

August 2009 Challenge 30 Days of Fitness

Week One Wrap Up

Weekly Goal
5 miles of walking
2- 90 min yoga sessions

Day 1
2 mile walk & circuit training: tricep dips off couch, 3 way partner ab/oblique exercise (where one person lies down & holds onto the ankles and raises up their legs while the standing partner pushes the feet down), modified push ups, & jumping jacks.

Day 2
Easy 6 mile walk over a 2 hour period (chat time)

Day 3
90 minutes of Sunrise Yoga Sweat
4 mile walk in 60 minutes

Day 4
5 mile walk

Day 5
2 mile walk

Day 6
90 minutes of Sunset Yoga

Day 7
2 mile walk

Total Completed
21 miles of walking
2- 90 min yoga sessions
1 circuit training session

How about you? Comment below your workout wrap up!

Monday, August 10, 2009

July 09 Fitness Analysis

In July, I tweeted that I did a Fitness Analysis. This is something I learned as part of my personal training education. You can learn how to perform your own fitness analysis by going to this link. It's great because it gives you a general idea of your fitness level. When you see my results below you'll see I added in a few extra elements to the test just to get a clearer picture of where I was.

I wasn't exactly thrilled with the results, but everyone needs to know their starting point. Isn't there a quote out there somewhere that says what gets measured improves? I have been more sedentary since I have been working online more so here are my humble results.

After reviewing my results, I was bummed that I relapsed and lost most of my efforts I was making on my bikini body challenge. My sedentary lifestyle is eating away my physical abilities and I really needed to step up my game. There is no reason that I shouldn't be in the top 95%ile in all areas. Obviously, I need to work on my upper body strength and cardiovascular ability. I decided it's time to get back on track & make some goals, create a support system and accountability.

Run an 8 minute mile. It isn't a fantastic time, but it is a big improvement to my current time.
Complete 40 consecutive modified push-ups and 20 consecutive full push ups
Reduce my BMI to 18

Plan of Action
August I started a 30 day challenge. The goal is to complete a workout everyday for 30 days.

Cardio Plan
Complete 1 mile 5x on week 1= Total 5 miles
Complete 2 miles 5x on week 2= Total 10 miles
Complete 3 miles 5x on week 3= Total 15 miles
Complete 4 miles 5x on week 4= Total 20 miles

Strength, Flexibility, Balance Plan
Perform Yoga 2x a week- 90 minutes each session adding in lots of push ups or chaturangas for upper body strength.

Support System & Accountability
I created a yoga bikini body boot camp group for women. I love helping others by solving my own problem! Together we are supporting each other to improve our levels of fitness. Another way to stay accountable is by posting blogs on my weekly workout wrap ups. So check in weekly to see if I am still going strong.

I have already completed 10 days this month. I haven't missed a day of doing some exercise everyday! Even better, my sister decided to join in on the 30 days of fitness challenge and has been walking 4 miles everyday! I love it!

Comment below and share with me your current weekly workout!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Raw Spaghetti w/ "Sausage"

A few months ago I bought a spirooli. I knew I was going to be growing zucchini so I wanted to be prepared to make one of my favorite raw dishes: spaghetti (it is not in accordance w/ 80/10/10 due to salt & seasonings, but still a nice dish). I have a mandolin and sometimes make noodles with that too, but I really like how long and thin this makes them. Even a grater works (see in the video below).

Click HERE to see how it works!

Here is what my noodles look like after I use the spirooli. I like them somewhat short since after the first time using it I realized I was making 5 ft long noodles! DOH! I sweat the noodles by adding salt and letting them sit for about 30 min. then drain the liquid.

I haven't made this recipe in about a year, so my memory is somewhat failing me, but here are the basics. It's super easy & practically impossible to mess up.

For the marinara I use this base from the Raw Body Twins. Then I add more spices inspired by the marinara sauce from"Raw Food Real World" by Matthew Kenney. It's a flexible thing and you can change it to meet your preferences. However, the marinara in the video above is fine just as it is.

1 C walnuts
2 Medjool dates, pitted
in the food processor and added
1/2 dried fennel
pinch of crush ground red pepper
1/4 tsp basil
1/4 tsp oregano
1/4 salt

Process walnuts in the food processor til chopped. Add everything else, including dates, & process until it comes together but still has texture.

You'll be blown away. It looks & tastes similar to cooked ground sausage. Crumble this over the top of the marinara & noodles.

This recipe is even better the next day after all the flavors have had a chance to mingle in the fridge!