Monthly Archives: March 2013

Monthly Goals

I believe that the most important thing that we can do in order to contribute to the growth of our character is to set measurable, realistic goals for ourselves and hold ourselves accountable. Measurable goals allow us to avoid getting caught up in the insignificant and allow for a much clearer view of our paths, development, and growth.
At the beginning of every month I sit down with my note book and outline my goals for the upcoming 4 weeks. I divide my list in three categories: Personal Goals, Fitness Goals, and Business Goals.  
Personal Goals:

My “Personal Goals” category usually contains goals connected to “character” and “soul”. For instance, a few months ago when I was having a hard time keeping my head above water, my personal goals included the following:
Think of one great thing that distinguishes you from the rest of the world every morning.
Think of three things that happened today that you are grateful for at night.  
Simple things like that allowed me to more effectively deal with the challenges that I was facing and made me concentrate on the positive things that were going on in my life instead of the storm of difficulties that I was dealing with.
Fitness Goals:
I did not use to separate my Fitness Goals from my Personal Goals until I realized that I allowed my Fitness Goals to overtake my Personal Goals. So, I gave my Fitness Goals their own place to live and found that it kept me even more on track. During the last few months, my Fitness Goals included:
Eat less cheese (a little back story here, my goals for the year included eliminating all processed food from my diet. I pick a processed food every month, and try to break the habit of eating it)
Decrease my 5K time by 2 minutes
Increase my maximum squat weight by 10lbs
Setting Fitness Goals allows me to figure out what I am going to concentrate on during the next month and helps me plan my workouts. It also allows for a more measurable result at the end of the month when I do my self evaluation.
Business Goals:

 Just like Personal and Fitness this is a very important category for me that I know I need work in. Setting measurable monthly goals in this category can make a difference between toiling away to get a paycheck and living. These monthly, in-depth evaluations allow me to better prioritize during the upcoming month, keep me on top of my deadlines, and to make sure that I have a good foundation that will allow growth and development.
Of course just simply setting measurable monthly goals is not going to help you, unless you review them frequently. It is important to keep yourself on track and tuned in to your daily progress as well as the overall monthly, quarterly, and yearly progress. You should be realistic about setting your goals to prevent discouragement. If your goals are not evolving month to month, every quarter, or every year, then you are not setting measurable and realistic goals. Get to planning, people. It is going to be the best thing you ever do for yourself next to drinking plenty of water.
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A Much Kneaded Reflief

Ah, spring is finally here! To celebrate this spring day I decided that I am going to get a massage. It wasn’t until I got to the massage place and got on the table that I realized how much my muscles needed to be taken care of. I walked out of the room an hour later finally able to move and lay flat on my back! I definitely should consider getting  massage and doing yoga more often. It is very liberating to finally be pain free and able to stretch and move in ways I haven’t been able to in months. 

Challenge Excepted.

Yesterday one of my dear friends and trainers has announced that she is committing to loosing 10% body fat in 11 weeks. Well, being a good friend and wanting to loose roughly the same amount of body fat, I decided that I am going to support her on her quest to a better, harder, more chiseled body.

Today, I am publicly announcing that I have been on a quest for a hard, chiseled look since June of last year.  In case you were wondering, here is a picture of me from my vacation in June of 2012. In this picture I am 170 lbs and have 30% body fat.

170 lbs 30% BF

Was I down on myself then? Yes. Did I treat myself right? No. Did I often fall victim to the sweet song of  a frosty lager, or a slightly chilled porter? Yes. As other beer lovers and brewers will tell you, it is hard to keep a six pack in your hands as well as on your body. So, what did I do? I discovered this wonderful thing called moderation, heavy lifting, and support.

To some degree, I am still slightly embarrased about posting this next picture online for all to see. Mostly because I am not quite where I want to be, but nonetheless, I choose to celebrate my achievement today and announce that in 11 weeks I will be loosing 7-10% body fat. Here I am, today, at 163 lbs, 25.9% body fat. Let the shred begin!

163 lbs and 25.9% body fat

FINALLY!

I can’t tell you how excited I am today. I finally felt good enough to go to the gym and lift some weights! Yay!

When I got to the gym I felt like a child that was released into the candy store. I wanted to do everything all at once. The voice of reason, however, reminded me that I must not give in to my fitness ADD and just stick to the program. So, I stuck to it.

Today was my upper body day. After going through my first set of exercises  I felt a touch “fried”. I think I over zealously pushed myself a little harder then I should have after a long absence. Second and third set of exercises I breezed through, which tells me that I probably need to increase the weight or the number of reps, and finally when I got around to training my biceps, I was completely bored. I need to come up with a more creative ways to train my biceps or at least get them engaged when I am doing my lower body. Finally, I trained abs today as well. Again, I need a more creative way to train abs. I am very bored with my Russian Twists and V-ups and Captain’s Chair exercises…

The more I continue working out at the small, private gym that I go to, the more I realize how much I miss having  someone to spot me, talk to, and workout with. I use to dislike training with other people, now I feel like I need a pack.

I think I am going to start looking for an excepting bunch of body builders to take me under their wing. I think it is time to be part of a group.

Living Vicariously Through My Friends


I think I already said this before, but being sick or having to stay away from my normal workout routine due to an injury turns me into  an incredibly grumpy person. I am on day four of forced rest and I am itching to go back to the gym. Logically I understand that rest is required, that I will be able to come back to my routines quicker if I give myself time to rest and rejuvenate, but emotionally I am a mess. Over the last few years I have gotten use to leaving my stress at the gym, and although there were moments of self doubt about my fitness progress, I never doubted one thing — working towards my fitness goals made me very happy.
Since I could not go to the gym this morning due to this incessant sinus infection, I decided to relive some stress by doing simple meditation. Granted, I haven’t meditated in a long while, but I have to say, it has nothing on lifting heavy weights or doing 30 burpees. It just isn’t the same for me. I am really looking forward to finally being able to keep my date with the Smith machine at some point this week.  
So, dear friends, since I can’t be out there doing pullups, pushups, squats, and deadlifts, get off your butts and go do something active for me. A few pushups, a few bench dips, some jumping jacks, superman planks, and burpees will totally make your day! Seriously, go do it, then call me and tell me all about it. ’cause I AM DYING HERE!!!! 🙂 

6 Ps of Success.


I am still pretty sick, but today was a planned rest day anyway. As usual, every Sunday is my planning, packing, and shopping day. On Sundays I make sure that I am prepped for the rest of the week. After all, Proper Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance. It also prevents emotional eating, slipping off your diet, skipping on workouts, and bending your schedule during the week.  I am not  advocating inflexibility, but you are less likely to make excuses if you have a clear plan of action.  So, get to planning and if you slip, make sure that you built in a fail safe. 

Forced Break. Darn it!


As I was afraid of yesterday, I had to cancel my date with Murph this morning. Unfortunately, I feel incredibly sick. I went to the doctor today and received a subsequent cocktail of meds  to make me feel better by tomorrow morning (fingers crossed). Ordinarily, I wouldn’t even think of running a race sick, but I am holding out hope that I will feel better tomorrow morning. Yes, I know, I can see the disapproving looks already, but after the week that I had, a nice, exhausting run is the only thing that will make me feel better.  I guess vodka could also make me feel better, but I hear that abs and vodka don’t go well together.
Since I clearly can’t workout right now, I want to talk about nutrition.  If you are like me and can’t even think of eating food when you get sick, I recommend trying to drink it. I usually have three or four antioxidant and vitamin packed smoothies a day when I am sick since the thought of chewing food makes me even sicker then I already am. Here are my favorites:

RASPBERRY SMOOTHIE

8 oz. Coconut Water or Orange Juice* or both
1 Cup Raspberries
1 Banana
1 tbsp. Flax Seed Meal
1 tbsp. Almond Butter
½ cup Baby Spinach
2 tbsp Lemon Juice

Blend until smooth. If you want your throat soothed, I recommend adding a few ice cubes and  some fresh mint leaves into the mix. Not only will it add an enticing aroma to your smoothie, it is also high in potassium and manganese.

GREEN GODDESS JUICE

4 12″ Stalks of Celery
1 Cup Kale
3 Large Carrots
2 Medium Green Pears 1 Lemon Pealed
1 Large Cucumber Pealed

Juice and enjoy. I add ice cubes and blend the juice in the blender to get more of a slushy consistency.  Be warned this will make roughly 4 glasses of juice. I generally use this juice to swallow my pills and in the morning to get an extra boost of vitamin C, beta keratin, and  antioxidants. Also, if added to the aforementioned Raspberry Smoothie instead of Coconut Water or Orange Juice it makes for a more vitamin enriched breakfast smoothie (also has more calories)

ORANGE EXPLOSION

1/2 Green Apple
2 Oranges Pealed and separated into slices
1 Cup Mango
1 Cup Pineapple
1 tbsp Coconut Oil

I think this one is my favorite of them all. Sometimes I add 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder to make sure that I get enough protein during those “hard to eat moments”.

BLUEBERRY BLISS

1/2 Cup Mango
1 Cup Blueberries
1/2 cup Kale or Spinach (your call)
1-2 Tbsp Lemon
1/2 Avocado
1 Cup Pineapple or Orange Juice*

Blend and enjoy.
Keep in mind that these shakes are calorie reach  on purpose. They are meant as substitutes for entire meals not accompaniments. Each of the shakes are roughly 400 calories depending on how heavy handed you are in cutting up your fruit and vegetables.

*When I refer to Orange Juice in this recipe I mean freshly squeezed juice from real oranges. I don’t recommend buying processed versions of fruit juices as they are packed with sugar and other preservatives that are more harmful then helpful.

Allergies? Cold? Weight lifting? Crossfit?

Although I am not too sure if I am having a really bad case of allergies or if I am beginning to get sick. Regardless, I pushed through my cardio today just in case it is allergies. I regret nothing! Well, maybe I regret that I only had 20 minutes… Either way, it is so unfair to feel this under the weather just days before my race. If I don’t feel absolutely horrible tomorrow, I have a date with Murph and hopefully some sore back muscles afterwards. I guess when lifting doesn’t get you sore, turn to crossfit! I have high hopes for you, Murph! Don’t let me down!

Call Me "Sleepy" Kay!

I made an extra effort yesterday to go to bed at a reasonable time. I even spelt well for a change! Alas, I ran into the same problem today as I kept running into a week before. I couldn’t keep my eyes open! It took two cups of green tea and an extra helping of Spark to get my butt going. Finally after a long struggle to get functional I went to the gym.
The workout was good, albeit pretty hard. I sure hope I am sore tomorrow or I am not sure what I am going to do to myself on Friday for my next weight lifting day!

All I Need is 20 Minutes to Feel Human Again.

In the last few days my workout times have been all over the road. I am a person of routine and consistency, I got my body use to having a natural boost of endorphins in the morning and having to work out at night have turned me into a grumpy, stressed, mean girl. I am making it an effort to get my workouts back on normal morning schedule. Even if it means getting to the gym at 5 am.  
That being said, I dont know what I would have done to the world today if it had been for my 20 minutes of cardio this evening. I wish I had the time for a full 45, but 20 is all I had to spare. I guess you have to get it in where you can, right?