Superhero Challenge Day 11: Time Matters…?

3 Oct

Today’s challenge asked us to log not only what we eat, but also what time we eat, so here it goes:

Breakfast, 6:45am:
Bowl of honey nut granola cereal with a cup of coffee with vanilla almond milk

Snack/Breakfast part 2, 7:30am: (already? haha)
Small baggie of frozen grapes in the car on the drive to work

Lunch, 12:15:
Cauliflower lasagna, 5 small turkey meatballs and salad

Postworkout, 615:
Pumpkin vanilla whey protein shake

Dinner in the car on the way to bowling (no I wasn’t driving), 645-655:
Turkey burger, over easy egg, salsa, avocado… ate too fast and was hurting through bowling

Bedtime snack (like a child), 10:
Grapes

image

Fitting in a squat between strikes!

Since I had bowling I wasn’t able to go to crossfit so I tried to create a mini version of the WOD by doing 50 air squats, 25 knee push ups (I know, I need to work up to standard push ups) then a mile run. I did this twice. My first mile was 8:50 and my second was 9:40 and I felt like I was sprinting. I definitely have to work on my running and keeping my heart rate up for longer periods of time without wanting to puke.

Bowling was fun tonight. I switched from a 10 pounder to a 12er at the second game. It was nice to use a heavier ball and not have to throw my entire body down the lane to get a strike.

I am worried about my shoulder though. Last winter or spring I strained it pretty bad and it was awful dealing with the pain every day. It felt sore yesterday, I think from a thruster where I lost my balance a bit. I felt fine this morning but I was sore after bowling. I guess I’ll just have to focus on safe lifting techniques and keep an eye on it.

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Superhero Challenge Day 10: Oh Hey There Second Wind

2 Oct

I was worried today would be awful since I only got about 5.5 hours of sleep last night (really quick side note — I went to The Neighbourhood concert and it was awesome.

The Neighbourhood Show and Set List

Thankful for the shadowy lighting to hide my post-run hair. I’m pretty sure there were gnats embedded in my strands (gotta love running by a lake at sunset!).

Per the challenge guidelines, I didn’t even have one drink, not even a sip of wine, which helped me still feel decent this morning). Oh and did I mention I went home with a set list? Yea buddy!!!!

To my surprise, once I was up and moving and had a mug of coffee in me I felt great! I was shocked at my energy level. I was determined to make it to the 5:30 CrossFit class to keep the momentum going but go figure right as I’m a mere few blocks away, I get stuck waiting for a train for over 10 minutes and missed it. My attitude walking in to the 6:30 class was less than ideal, ok fine it was awful. My over tired emotions were starting to get the best of me but thankfully I snapped out of it during the warm up. I even found that I was pushing myself more than usual, both with trying the heavier weights for strength portions and mentally. Instead of resting to catch my breath I pushed myself to do just one more, which turned in to finishing another set. I even go a second wind during the second set of the WOD… something I haven’t felt in FOR-EV-ER! Even when I got home I had the energy to prep my lunch for tomorrow, make a post workout pumpkin vanilla whey shake AND type up this blog post 🙂

I’ll spare the boring details of my repeat meals for the day and just tell you what I had for dinner, which was new: Turkey burger topped with salsa and an over easy egg… with plantain chips and a chunkier pico salsa on the side. Yum yum! Oh and some frozen grapes.

My eyelids are getting heavy though so I think this will be it for tonight. Time for snuggles with the pup.

Day 10 Workout: (PS Day 9 Workout was a 3ish mile run)

Warm-up:

Kettlebell Warmup

Strength:

1a: Shoulder Press (5 @ 65%, 5 @ 70%, 5 @ 75%, 5 @ 80%) (Finished at 55# and seeing as I thought 60 was my max, I think it’s time to find out what my new one rep max is!)

1b: GHD Situps (4 X 8) (These still terrify me)

WOD:

7 Min AMRAP (Finished at 3 +10)
7 Thruster (115/75) (I went with 55# and that was pushing it…)
7 Knee to Elbow
7 KB Swing (53/35)

Rest 2 Min

7 Min AMRAP (Finished at 3 +11… felt a second wind with 5 minutes left)
7 Wall Ball (20/14)
7 Burpee
7 Wall Ball Sit Up (20/14)

Superhero Challenge – Day 8: One Week Down, Two to Go

30 Sep

One week down and I would like to say I can feel a difference. Today my energy level was great, even though I got under 8 hours of sleep, which is one thing I’ve been working on doing (getting 8 hours that is). Today’s workout even felt ok, despite feeling like my legs were a bit weak and tight. I hadn’t done dead lifts since I learned how to do them at the Elements class though, and my lower back is sure feeling it now. I definitely need to work on technique so I don’t do some serious damage with that move. On the bright side, I tried a post workout vanilla whey pumpkin smoothie that I’ve been meaning to try for a week or so now.

Something about blogging makes me want to take selfies, so I apologize... but it was so good I finished every last drop!

Something about blogging makes me want to take selfies, so I apologize… but it was so good I finished every last drop!

The picture makes it look more yellow than it was but it was a fun orange pumpkin color. I added tons of cinnamon (per the recipe's suggestion), which made me happy because I love me some cinnamon.

The picture makes it look more yellow than it was but it was a fun orange pumpkin color. I added tons of cinnamon (per the recipe’s suggestion), which made me happy because I love me some cinnamon.

I got the recipe from Emily Schromm’s blog and I am hooked! It was super easy and had just enough flavor for my taste. Tis the season for pumpkin delciousness! You can find the recipe here, but I cut it in half for my first batch since I wasn’t sure how I would like it (I did keep the full scoop of whey thought).

Oh and how could I forget to report back on the cauliflower lasagna I made last night… it was AMAZING! A few of the bites had more cauliflower flavor, but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. The consistency of the cauliflower layer was noodley enough for me. I will absolutely be making this one again! Well, that’s all for tonight, I need to get back to watching Breaking Bad. I just started season 4 and am determined to finish this season and season 5 before I am exposed to any of the series finale spoilers. I haven’t seen any yet and it’s been glorious. I also haven’t been on Twitter since last night so that’s probably why.

Day 8 Workout:

Warm-up

Goblet Squats, Y/T/W

3 Rounds
10 Goblet Squats
5 Each Y/T/Ws
10 Glute Bridge per side

Strength

1a: Back Squat (5 @ 65%, 5 @ 70%, 5 @ 75%, 5 @ 80%) (Worked off of a 100# max so I ended at 85#. I felt like I could have done more but my form wasn’t the greatest today so I need to work on that.)

1b: Weighted Pull-ups (4 x 8) (Using a green band)

WOD

3 RFT
30 Double Under (Still struggle with the ol DUs so I did 60 regular jumps instead, which I still missed jump more than I’d like to admit… did I miss my childhood recess jump rope initiation or what?)
20 Pull Up (RX+ is C2B) (Started with green and red band but that was too much help, I felt like Peter Pan when I’d fling up the in air so I dropped to green and purple, a good decision for this many reps.)
10 Deadlift (225/155) (300/200) (This made for an interesting workout since I haven’t done dead lifts in 1.5-2 months. I went with 85# and that was plenty, as I was still working on my form, which is evident from my sore lower back today. Not a huge fan of these just because I’m nervous about tweaking my lower back but I’m sure I’ll get more comfortable the more I do them.)

Day 8 Meals:
Breakfast: Bowl of the granola cereal I made yesterday with a splash of vanilla almond milk

Lunch: Slice of cauliflower lasagna with a spinach salad on the side.

Post Workout: Pumpkin Vanilla Whey protein smoothie

Dinner: (I actually wasn’t that hungry after the smoothie but I actually am a bit hungry as I’m typing, so lesson learned, plan appropriately) Spinach artichoke dip with Trader Joe’s mild salsa mixed in and plantain chips and an apple for a evening snack.

Tomorrow’s goal — water intake… I’m going to be a stickler on 64+ oz of water (which I personally find exhausting but I know it’s the right thing to do).

Superhero Challenge – Day 7: Weekend Update

29 Sep
How can cooking not be a blast when you have a sidekick like this in the kitchen?

Keeping it classy in my parents’ kicthen. How can cooking not be a blast when you have a sidekick like this in the kitchen?

No, I didn’t perish from almond butter overdose. I just had an awesome weekend and am now sitting down to share it. I spent time with some of my best friends, caught up on rest, spent time enjoying the beautiful fall weather and got to hang out with my family today while I tried out some new recipes. It was fun to get my family involved so they can see that I truly haven’t lost it and that this whole paleo thing isn’t that crazy.

Even my 4 year old nephew lent a helping hand with making Honey Nut Granola Cereal (see the recipe link below). He discovered his love of Aunt Alyssa’s not so cheap dried blueberries, but look at that kid, how could I say no?

Tired pups

If only they were always this tired and innocent.

I will say the best part was checking out a nearby dog park with my roommate and her dog. I’ve been meaning to go for months but was always afraid to go by myself so we tag teamed it and it was awesome! Tired pups make for happy owners, that’s for sure.

The other highlight of my weekend was FINALLY getting a hanging 3 tier produce basket. I absolutely love it and can’t wait to fill it with things. Yep. That’s right. Things, not even limiting it to produce. I feel like a responsible adult when I buy things like this. I have my wonderful coworker to thank for that, as she was the one who actually found it whilst out on her own shopping trip. She actually has an AWESOME blog you should check out for some mouthwatering recipes… I would know since she often brings her creations in to the office for us (seriously, I get so jealous of her cooking skillz).

Workout wise, I just went on some long walks yesterday and today. My legs were pretty weak after Friday’s WOD. And by weak I mean it absolutely kicked my ass twice over. Oh… what’s that… you want to see what put me to shame? Well, since we’re all friends here…

WARM-UP:
KB Warm Up
Dynamic Warm Up/Stretch
3 Round
5 SDHP
5 Thruster
5 Front Squat
5 OHS

STRENGTH:
1) Strict Press
4 @ 75% – 4 @ 80% – 4 @ 80% – 4 @ 85% (I maxed out at 55#, which I was pretty impressed with since earlier this week my 1 rep max was just under 60)
2) Front Squat (I hadn’t maxed out in awhile so just went off of what my partner was doing. I ended at 75# and was content with that for now.)
5 @ 65% – 4 @ 75% – 4 @ 80% – 4 @ 85%

WOD:
“Air Force WOD”
20 Thruster (95/65) (This is where I wilted like a flower, after my first one I had to drop from 55# and tried doing 45#… and ended up having to switch to the training bar and go with 25# for the workout… eventually dropping to only 3 burpees per minute an only 15 reps of each. I looked like a flopping fish out of water doing those burpess by the end, but such is life (In this video, you can see me struggling and those are my fellow crossfitters trying to cheer me on). Sure it hurt my ego BUT I was able to finish the workout AND definitely pushed myself even with that weight. Hopefully my body has adjusted to this new diet and getting back in to the whole crossfit routine that next week I’ll feel stronger).
20 SDHP
20 Push Jerk
20 OHS
20 Front Squat
*Perform 4 burpees at the start of each minute

Like I mentioned above, I did try out a few new recipes and of course I took photos (duh). Check them out below!

Paleo Spinach Artichoke Dip

As I’ve mentioned before, spinach artichoke dip is my weakness (especially Applebees). Well thanks to the magical powers of Google, I was able to find a paleo friendly recipe that actually didn’t taste half bad! I actually really liked it. I brought it to a birthday party Friday and served it with veggies… I discovered Trader Joe’s plaintain chips today and it took this tip to a whole new level! Click here for the delicious recipe.

Honey Nut Granola Cereal

I go back and forth between craving hot breakfasts and cold ones… last week I was all about the eggs. This week I thought I’d try out this cereal with almond milk to satisfy my cereal craving. Spoiler alert, this photo was not taken in my kitchen, but one day I hope to own such fine kitchen decorative pieces. Click here for the quick and easy recipe.

Cauliflower Lasagna

I have to give a shout out to my mom for helping me create this delicious Italian paleo alternative. It was fun to cook together, even though I took all of the food to feed myself over the next few days, I did promise to make my parents a batch if it’s a success. This recipe uses cauliflower instead of noodles. I haven’t tried it yet but am bringing it for lunch tomorrow so I’ll be sure to report back. It smelled like perfection though so I have a good feeling. Click here for this paleo friendly lasagna recipe.

Week 2 starts tomorrow… feeling recharged and ready to conquer it!! Goodnight all 🙂

Superhero Challenge – Day 4: No More Almond Butter

26 Sep

This is going to be short and not so sweet. Today sucked. Big time. Not sure if it’s because I was dehydrated or because my body just didn’t like mix of foods I ate for dinner and breakfast but I felt extremely nauseous until about noon today. I blame the almond butter I had for dessert and breakfast this morning (with strawberries). Why do I blame it? Because for some reason after loving it last night, just the thought makes me cringe. Maybe I need to tone down my fat intake (bacon, avocados, coconut oil, almond butter) and find a happy medium. At any rate, on exhausted BUT I did stay strong despite almost convincing myself Qdoba was the only thing that would make me feel better. I had some lunchtime support from a coworker, which was a huge help. Of course my mom has been great too. Normally she would be the one encouraging me to go for it and do what makes me happy (even in to my 20s she still tries to fatten me up). I am so grateful she understands how important this challenge is for me and how it’s about more than just eating certain foods and more of proving to myself I have the willpower.

Taking it one day at a time and hoping tomorrow is better. At least my “workout” for the day, bowling was fun. Even thought we lost, laughing helped me get focused again.

I sure do love all my people! Here’s to a better day tomorrow!

(Pardon the typos, this was written on my non iPhone phone… right before going to bed… did I mention I’m exhausted? 🙂 )

Superhero Challenge – Day 3: Sometimes You Just Need to Rock a Santa Shirt

25 Sep

So today is day 3… still going strong, although today I did catch myself day dreaming about Qdoba queso and chips and Applebee’s Spinach Artichoke dip BUT I stayed strong so that’s what counts, right? RIGHT GUYS?!?

I woke up with enough time to make breakfast today, but I still didn’t give myself enough time to eat like a civilized person so was shoveling food in even as I let my dog out before heading to work. Maybe that makes me even more paleo.

The best part of the day was my energy level this afternoon. I usually hit a wall between 2:00-3:30 but today it didn’t hit me. Hopefully that’s a result of the change in diet, but I also have been having an overall kick ass week thus far, so that could easily be why. I also was really excited to go to cross fit today. I’m just really motivated to get back at it and keep getting stronger and stronger. I did yoga this past weekend and I noticed my body shaking even just supporting my own weight in downward dog so building my strength is a necessity.

Day 3 Workout:
WARM-UP:
400 M Run
Stretch Stretching my arm/shoulders with a band felt AMAZING today… I could have spent the whole hour just letting my arm dangle from that sweet, sweet elastic band
3 Round
5 Press
5 Hang Clean
6 OH Lunge Step

STRENGTH:
1a) Strict Press
5 @ 70% – 5 @ 80% – 3 @ 85% – 2 @ 90% – 1 @ 100% (Rest 60 sec) Tried doing my 1 rep max at 60 today (my previous max was 57) and couldn’t quite do it… something to work towards though!
1b) GHD These benches still terrify me, despite seeing giant men twice my size throwing their bodies back and forth I’m still convinced one day I’m just going to fling back.
5 x 10 (Rest 60 sec)

Santa Hustle Shirt Selfie

Pardon the selfie here, just wanted to show you the Santa shirt I wore to keep things interesting today. Sometimes you just need to rock a Santa shirt. And yes I’m balancing on the tub.

WOD:
10 Hang CleanWARM-UP:
400 M Run
Stretch
3 Round
5 Press
5 Hang Clean
6 OH Lunge Step

STRENGTH:
1a) Strict Press
5 @ 70% – 5 @ 80% – 3 @ 85% – 2 @ 90% – 1 @ 100% (Rest 60 sec)
1b) GHD
5 x 10 (Rest 60 sec)

WOD: Time was 3:06overall felt GREAT after… glad I stuck with 55# but next time want to bump it up
10 Hang Clean (55#)
30’ OH Carry
8 Hang Clean
30’ OH Carry
6 Hang Clean
30’ OH Carry
4 Hang Clean Felt like puking momentarily when I started doing the set of 4… boy would that have been embarrassing.
30’ OH Carry
2 Hang Clean
30’ OH Carry

Day 3 Meals:
Breakfast: I threw some veggies (cauliflower, carrots, broccoli) on a pan with some coconut oil and seasoned them with a bit of garlic powder and seasoning salt… then I poured it in a bowl with a couple pieces of bacon and topped with 2 over easy eggs. I liked the crunch it added plus it was SUPER filling… note to self – allow more than 4 minutes to devour.

Lunch: So far my favorite of the week – Turkey (from the deli), bacon, tomatoes and half an avocado on lettuce wraps. LOVED it and it filled me up the perfect amount for lunch.Turkey, Bacon, Avocado, Tomato on Lettuce Wraps

Dinner: Paleo tacos (again)… don’t worry guys I finally finished up the meat, with the exception of a spoonful I plan on mixing up with some eggs for breakfast tomorrow. Also, I think I found a little treat that may have changed my life, seriously. I heated up a couple spoonfuls of almond butter in the microwave then threw in some cut up strawberries (so thankful Tuesday night Alyssa decided to take the time to cut up the strawberries for the sake of Wednesday Alyssa). It. Was. AMAZING. Seriously I’m already excited to treat myself to it again tomorrow.

I feel very centered as I crawl in to bed to watch part 2 of the Real World/Road Rules Challenge finale (gotta support my girl Emily since she’s the motivation behind this 21 day challenge). It is truly amazing what a good workout can do to my mood. Feeling good, feeling great – let’s see how day 4 goes!!

Superhero Challenge – Day 2

24 Sep

Well, day 2 and I haven’t quit yet. That’s a good sign, right? Overall today was good. I made sure to make time for breakfast this morning, even though I ended up being a bit late for work (sorry about that boss)! I still struggled getting out of bed, but once I was up and moving I felt great. My shins have bruises scattered all over, a true tell sign that I’m back at cross fit. I also noticed by lunch time I was STARVING, a bit different from yesterday but I think it’s because I didn’t get to eat all of my breakfast due to the whole driving and trying to use a fork during morning commute thing. I’ll have to work on that 😉 (kidding, I’ll be safe).

I found myself at the grocery store again tonight, day 3 in a row, but I actually don’t dread it. I get excited about getting fresh produce and preparing to try new recipes. Thanks to a friend I have some pretty tasty breakfast recipes coming up (didn’t get to it tonight). My biggest challenge happened when I went to get bacon. I never really paid much attention to bacon because I usually get morning star veggie bacon. I wrote down that I should look for “Natural Bacon” and even wrote down a brand name (don’t ask me, I already threw away my list), but was discouraged to see that every package I picked up included sugar in the list of ingredients the bacon was “cured” in. I guess I’ll have to do more research on this. If anyone has any suggestions, please, suggest away!

Day 2 Workout:
My shoulders and hamstrings were a bit sore today so I’m glad I got to take it easy with kickball. Side note — shout out to the Pumped Up Kicks for the ultimate come back being down 4-7 at the top of the 9th and scoring 4 runs and holding the lead for the win (holla)! At any rate… I had fun tonight but am excited to get in a good WOD tomorrow!

Day 2 Meals:
Breakfast: Butter coffee, this time with vanilla and sugar and cut back on the coconut oil and butter. Unfortunately I’m such a spazz in the morning I accidentally dumped way too much vanilla in. Third time’s a charm right? Hopefully? Check back tomorrow and see. I scrambled 2 eggs with tomato, onion and guacamole but like I said above I didn’t get to eat much of it.

Lunch: Spaghetti squash, tomatoes, basil and salad with Olive Oil & Vinegar dressing along with leftover guacamole and plantain chips (they didn’t ever really “crunch” up so I’ll have to see how it goes with my next batch)

Dinner: Leftover paleo tacos with a few bites of bacon while it was cooking for the rest of the week’s meals (couldn’t help myself… bacon is so good!)

Feeling good, feeling great… however I have a feeling it’ll get tough as week one goes on. Encouragement welcome! Sorry for any typos… too tired to grammar check (the journalism major in me is cringing).