Thursday, April 4, 2013

Drinking the CrossFit Kool-aid

It's been far too long since I've posted. Really, when I started this blog in 2011, I had high hopes for it. I thought I would be updating at least a couple times a week. Womp womp!  I suck again. What happened you ask? Well, I got pregnant. I worked to the bone. I quit my job in May to start a 40 hour a week internship at a VA hospital 50 miles away. I graduated with my Masters. I later got a paying job at the VA. My family moved one county over. Oh and, let me just say it again. I got pregnant. <--- Not for the weak.  AND, I had my baby. Yeah... busy girl here.

Okay, so now on to the topic of this post. CrossFit. After years of being a cardio junky and rarely giving strength training a chance, I've decided to change my gears and focus on CrossFit. Oh, and training for the Marine Corps Marathon. Yeah, I'm a little crazy. My husband started doing CrossFit back in 2008 when we were stationed in Okinawa, Japan. After only a couple of months from doing it, he became pretty ripped.  It wasn't until this year that I decided to make a major change to my fitness regimine. Yes, I still love to run and yes, I'm running two half marathons (1 down, 1 to go) and a full marathon this year. But I feel that CrossFit will make me a stronger runner and an overall stronger individual as a whole. This past tuesday I completed my first on ramp class. I am required to complete four on ramp classes total, however the trainer has a feeling that I can possibly complete all the required courses in three classes and jump right into the WODs (workout of the day) immediately. Day 1 WOD was pretty fun. It was a real eye opener. I started off doing a warm up that included various movements with the ropes. Next the trainer walked me through 4 simple movements which were going to be included in my day 1 WOD: walking lunches, squats, ring pulls and push ups. After he "showed" me how to do these movements with the proper form, it was time for the WOD. 3..2..1.. go! I started off doing so many meters of walking lunges. Then, 15 squats, ring pulls and pushups. Then, 12 reps of those three exercises. Then, 9 reps... After I completed these movements, I had to repeat the walking lunges and done! So it about 7 minutes, I was completely smoked and done with my workout of the day! It's that simple. Well, simple is an understatement. CrossFit is NOT easy and not for the faint of heart. But it's effective and quick. And that's why I like it so much!

CrossFit round 2 tonight!

Have you ever tried CrossFit?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Change is a beautiful thing

It's been so incredibly long since I've last posted. Why? Well, to sum it up, I've had a busy 2012. In chronological order, I have gotten pregnant after I miscarried, continued taking graduate-level classes towards my masters degree, I landed and completed a full-time internship at the Bay Pines VA Medical Center, I graduated with my Masters degree in Social Work from FSU, and most importantly, I had my handsome little boy on September 14, 2012. Oh, and I got a fabulous job where I completed my internship. The mack-daddy of all Social Work jobs. This job is the cream of the crop for social workers.

It HAS been a busy year. It's also been one of the greatest years of my life. So much has happened. When I look back at my life, I've had such a difficult time with change. I think it's what finally sent me into a total whirlwind and lead to the development of my eating disorder in 2007/2008. I hated being out of control and trying to manage all the change around me. Yet, five years later I am welcoming the changes in my life with open arms. I am blessed with all the changes that have recently happened in my life.

So with that being said, I want to introduce the best thing that has ever happened to me. My son, Michael.

Michael was born on September 14, 2012 at 3:43pm. He was 8 lbs, 12 oz and was 22 inches long. He's going to be a tall boy! Labor lasted approximately 12 hours. It started at around 3am. I had my first contraction then and 30 minutes later I had another. Another 30 minutes went by and I had my third contraction. After that third contraction, they literally went from 30 minutes a part to 5 minutes apart. I timed the contractions for exactly an hour. In which they remained 5 minutes apart. At 5am, I called the doctor to let her know that was going on. She said it was time to head to the hospital. And off we went! A normally 45 minute drive took my husband about a 25 minutes. :) After we arrived, they admitted me to triage. I stayed in triage until about 11am. We had to wait for a room in Labor and Delivery to open up. I refused to take a wheelchair to Labor and Delivery. I wanted to walk because I heard that brought on the labor faster. And boy did it bring it on. As soon as I walked into my room, I had an extremely painful contraction. Good thing I was hanging on to my husband or I would have hit the floor. Between the time I entered the room and 3pm, I had my water broken, an epidural (at 5cm) and a shot of pitocin. The epidural only worked on my left side at first. The nurses had to keep rotating my body to get the epidural to flow to the other side. They also had to up the level of the epidural because they felt that the anesthesiologist didn't give me enough to correlate with my height. After about an hour of rotating me back and forth on the bed, the epidural took on my right side. After that, labor was virtually pain free. However, the epidural gave me the shakes pretty bad. My mother in law thought that I was cold and needed a blanket. lol I told her that I was actually burning up and wanted to air condition dropped even lower! At a little after 3, the nurse felt it was time to start pushing. I was 10 cm and 100 percent effaced. As I was about to start pushing, the doctor walked in. We honestly wanted our nurse Dani to deliver the baby. Seeing as how she was there with us from the get go. The doctor was only with us for a few minutes from the time we were sent to delivery and labor. At about my third to last round of pushes, I felt like I needed to vomit. And that I did. lol My husband thought it was from pure exhaustion. After that I felt fine. A couple rounds of pushing later, out came my little boy! 3:43pm exactly! They plopped him on my body for a few seconds, dried him off and took him over to the warmer to suction out his mouth. About 10 minutes later, they put him back on my chest. That was the most amazing moment of my life... the first time they put him on me. It was love at first sight. He looked straight up at me. I will never forget that moment.

Now, here we are a month later and I can honestly say that I love being a mother. I love him with all my heart. He is such a great baby. He's already growing like a weed. I cannot wait to watch him grow and watch him develop a personality. What a wild and amazing ride...

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Day 1 Phase 1 of LiveFit Trainer

Heyyyyy guys. Well Day 1 Phase 1 of Jamie Eason's LiveFit Trainer is in the record books. Overall, it went well although I can tell that my left arm is definitely weaker than my right. Is that normal? I know I'm right side dominant so I guess it kind of makes sense. Tomorrow is my back and biceps workout. We'll see how that goes. If you don't know who Jamie Eason is, here she is...

If you take a look at her website, she is a fitness expert, fitness model and philanthropist. She is also the amazing woman in this picture above.

LiveFit is a 3-phase program where Jamie shares with you an exercise program, nutrition plan and supplement tips. Phase 1 is all about introducing your body to clean eating and weight training. In phase 2 you add cardio to your exercise program and cut carbs to sculpt muscle and burn fat. Phase 3 is all about HIIT training, carb-cycling, super-setting and saying a welcome hello to your new body! There are lots of free tools such as recipes, approved food list, a support community and much more. 

I honestly don't know if I can stick to the strict program but I can tell you that I certainly will try. I'm also adding in a little cardio to the first phase, but I'm trying not to over do it because I know phase 1 really needs to be introducing the body to weight bearing exercises. 

Have you guys ever tried a fitness program such as this? If so, share the love!

Monday, December 19, 2011

A day of "news"

Korean dictator Kim Jong II died. A local Police officer in Florida gets shot. Those were just a few things that were in the headlines yesterday. But not only were there a bunch of news, there was also a bunch of new things happening in the Deputy (my husband's) and my life yesterday. 

The first new thing was a breakfast that I made for the Deputy yesterday. Introducing... Egg in the Hole.
Foreign beer glass

Find a glass with at least a 2" diameter rim and press into the topic of a slice a bread

Remove circle and set aside

Then you're going to add a tad of butter to a non-stick pan and set to  a medium heat. Toast the slide of bread until a light golden brown. Then crack an egg into the center hold and fry for roughly 2 minutes. Flip and fry the other side for 2 more minutes. Meanwhile, during this last two minutes, fry the remaining piece of bread (circle) on both sides. Remove from pan and sprinkle a dash of paprika for presentation. Viola! Egg in the Hold!
Another new was a gift from my in-laws. About a year ago, they bought an electric fireplace/TV stand for their home. I fell in love the moment I laid my eyes on it. On thankgiving, while we were browsing the Christmas ads I came across a couple fireplaces in the home depot, lowes, kmart, and big lots ads. I thoughtfully mentioned the fireplaces to my husband while my in-laws were in hearing distance. :)  So yesterday, for an early christmas present... you get the picture! Isn't it cool!? And since we had a really cool fireplace and TV stand, we just had to get a new TV to go with it. LOL It was about time anyways that we purchased a new TV. Our old one was so outdated. It was probably going on 6 years. Plus, Best Buy had a fabulous financing option. 36 months, no interest.

Another new for us was the gun safe that my in laws purchased for my husband. For years, my husband has been asking for a safe for his rifles and pistols. My husband has been into pistols and rifles since he was a little boy. He got his first 9mm beretta when he was just 17 years old. Since then, he's collected a handful of weapons (for personal and work use). Being a Marine/Police Officer, it's pretty common :) It was nice to get the safe yesterday because up until then, he's scattered weapons all throughout the house. Everywhere you looked, there one was. Ha! So now, they are stored in a nice, safe location.

What's are the "news" in your life? Whether it's news or something new, explain.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Merry Christmas to me!

Hello friends! How is everyone doing on this fine saturday night? Michael and I decided to open one christmas gift each tonight. Honestly, we've both have not been in the Christmas spirit whatsoever. So to boost our morale I guess; to lift our spirits, we decided to open a little gift a week (and a day) early. I've had my eye set on one gift in particular. I knew what it was because my husband slipped one night. Not literally; he didn't fall. But he ended up telling me what it was. I've been asking for a gym membership for months now. And sure enough, he got me a membership to Anytime Fitness, which is about 5 minutes down the road from our house. Now, it's not as nice (and big) as LA Fitness but it's more convenient. It's a pretty decent size and it has showers (I've heard).

Michael ended up opening the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office money clip that I got him. I was in Patricks Uniform store a few weeks ago to pick up some shirt stays for him when I saw the clip in the glass case. I knew he'd like it and appreciate it so I purchased it. I also purchased one for his dad that says Dad on a HCSO badge. Michael's is silver and says deputy. It's like a mini HCSO badge (star). It definitely made my husband smile, which makes me happy.

On another note, I ended up making "Santa's Sacks" tonight for dessert. I originally saw it on Cely's ( blog.

Finished product
Before placing them in the oven

Before "bundling" the sacks :)
They turned out mighty spectacular if you ask me. Mike and I even invited the Sheriff's Deputy (who was doing some "off duty" work in our neighborhood) over to grab a Santa's Sack. :) He enjoyed the gooey goodness too!

Here's the recipe if you're interested...


Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets (Comes 2 in a box) - thawed

Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips (or another filling)

Directions: Make sure that the pastry sheets are thawed but not too thawed where they are warm and they just stick to everything. Lay the sheet out on a flat surface covered with flower. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough to where it's almost transparent. So make it nice and thin. Cut one sheet into fours. So you'll make four separate mini squares. If you're using both sheets that came in the package, you'll obviously have 8 squares total.

In each square, add a little bit of your filling. In my case, I used 2 spoonfuls of chocolate chips. You can use cherries, apple pie filling, etc.

Next, to make the sack bring the opposite corners together and pinch them together. Next, bring the other corners to the middle and continue to press firmly. Once all four side are together, press the dough until it sticks together and maintains the “sack” shape. Also go around and press the seams down and push together any gaping sections until it looks like the insides aren’t going to leak out while you are cooking them. Place the sacks on an ungreased baking sheet and bake @ 400 for 16-18 minutes until golden. You want them to be golden on the outside, yet cooked long enough to be done in the middle . Let them cool for about 5 minutes and sprinkle some powered sugar on top. Enjoy!!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Appointment cancellations can sometimes be a blessing

Lately, I've made it a point to not over exert myself with my job. Yes, overachieving is great and all. Maybe it reflects good on you in your boss's eyes but in my job, it can lead to what they typically call social work "burnout." A little over one year of being a degreed Social Worker, being burned out is not a good thing. Maslach and Leiter define burnout as: "the index of the dislocation between what people are and what they have to do. It represents an erosion of values, dignity, spirit and will-- an erosion of the human soul. It is a malady that spreads gradually and continuously over time, putting people into a downward spiral."

So why do Social Workers get burned out so easily? Well... crazy work hours and intense workdays (check!), mismanagement (check!), schedule imbalances (check!), chronic fear of downsizing (check!), lack of appreciation (check!), personal risk, office and inter-agency policies, and lack of professional projects (uhh.. I need less projects lol).

Needless to say, I've been striving to not work more than 40 hours a week. I need me time. I need time to spend with my husband, my dogs and time to exercise. I had an appointment scheduled at 5pm tonight. My appointments generally last one hour. This would have put me at about 42 hours. Luckily, my appointment cancelled on me due to my foster teen being on the "run." Though him running is not a good thing, I feel somewhat releaved that I don't have to work late. Is that horrible of me?

What do you do to avoid burnout with your work? (Work can be being a full time parent and student too!)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Start of something new

I honestly don't know what my intentions are with this blog. I've been inspired people people like Gina from The Fitnessista and Kaitlin from Healthy Tipping Point. They've managed to attract tons of people who enjoy the same things that they do (me included!): food and exercise. Now I know that I'll never get the amount of traffic that these inspirational ladies do, I would like to get at least a few faithful followers.

My main goal for this blog is to have a place to jot down my thoughts regarding anything that goes on in my life. Typically, I can't stand journaling. This is due to a couple of different reasons. One is because I felt somewhat forced to journal when I was hospitalized at Sheppard Pratt. Okay, okay. I wasn't forced. But I felt obligated to journal. Almost all the girls around me there journaled. Additionally, when we had free time there we weren't allowed to go outside and run around. We were expected to sit. And sit. And sit some more. So what can you do while sitting? Journaling sounded good. One of our classes was "Journaling." Needless to say, I got my fair share of journaling there. Another reason why I hate "journaling" is because I can't stand writing a lot. I mean, I like to write but when my hand gets tired, my penmanship starts to get sloppy. Now, I'm a perfectionist (isn't everybody?!). When I look back at my journal entries, I can't stand looking at my writing going from perfect to something that looks like a doctors script pad.

Online journaling is a little more appealing to me. My perfect penmanship doesn't take a turn for the worse and my focus of this blog is not to write and fester in my old disordered thoughts. I want this blog to be a place where I can write about life in general. Yes, my passion is exercise so a big part of my blog will be about running, fitness gear and my sweat and tears. Along with exercise needs to come a good refueling system: food. While I don't see myself as a "food blogger," I will be posting some pictures of my meals and recipes. My blog will also touch upon other aspects of my life. The most important aspect is my husband. I will talk about him, a lot. He's my rock. He's my guardian angel. We are trying to get pregnant so there are days where I'll drop some TTC (Trying to Conceive) topics and abbreviations. My dogs and my job are other topics that I will engage.

I have high hopes for this blog. I've started a couple in the past and for some reason, they just haven't worked out. This one however, I feel will be a source of comfort for me. An outlet.

Striving for Strides: Striving to reach the highest level is something I've done since a little girl. Whether it was striving for all A's or perfect attendance in school or whether it was striving to making All Conference for High school Softball or making the Show Band at the University of South Florida.... I've always strived to the highest level. By definition, a stride is "to reach the point or level at which one functions most competently and consistently." There in lies the title of my little blog. :)