Friday, October 19, 2012

October Playlist

First of all, thank you all SO MUCH for your sweet, amazing, kind & motivating comments on my last post. They really meant a lot to me and will continue to fuel my fire!

Second, I just realized I haven't posted a new playlist in a hot minute LONG time, so here you go:

taylor swift - red
hunter hayes - wanted
nicki minaj - pound the alarm
mumford & sons - i will wait
chris brown - don't wake me up
eli young band - even if it breaks your heart
josh turner - time is love
casting crowns - Jesus friend of sinners
jason aldean - take a little ride
imagine dragons - it's time
jason gray - remind me who i am
owl city & carley rae jepson - good time
maroon 5 - lucky strike

what are you listening to right now???

Friday, October 12, 2012

Fitness Poynters Extreme Fat Destruction::::Recap & Review

In January of this year I started a weight loss journey [for what seems like the millionth time]. I checked in with you all and also competed in a challenge at the gym. I did extremely well until May, having lost 18 pounds total. At this point the dreaded plateau crept up on me and I did what any completely irrational person would do... I gave up.

When the going got tough, I crumbled. I often found myself saying, "There just must be something wrong with me, because I'm doing all the work and it's not coming off." So after about a week or two of the same number on the scale, I started to back slide. 

I gained back 7 of the pounds I'd worked so hard to lose. And I'm talking QUICK. 

Then came vacation. Honestly vacation had been a huge motivator for me. I didn't want to feel self conscious all week, I wanted to enjoy it. But I was already in the negative mind set so not only was I self conscious all week, I sabotaged myself even more. Eating and drinking what I wanted. 

The one good thing [health-wise] I did was I did something active almost every day: running while my mom biked, biking with her, WOD with my brother, or stand up paddle boarding. But that was apparently beside the point. I really just used it to fuel the thoughts that I worked hard so I deserved to play hard also. 

When all was said and done, I gained back the complete 18 pounds, plus two more. It only took two months to completely undo what had taken me 5 months to do. Needless to say I was in a horrible place. I talked to my brother and he encouraged me to get in touch with Steve Poynter of Fitness Poynters. Matthew had worked with Steve a year or so ago when he decided to transition out of power lifting into a more lean muscle build. He spoke positively of his experience and I thought, well what do I have to lose. I knew I had to do something. 

I got in touch with Steve and he sent me a questionnaire asking my fitness goals. I was completely honest with him about my struggles and what I wanted. I want to lose weight, but I also want lean muscle mass. I don't want to be a twig, I want muscle! 

Steve had my plan to me within the week [He is extremely timely.... Any email I sent him was answered within a day, but very often it was much sooner]. I chose the Extreme Fat Destruction Plan ($64.99*), which comes with a workout plan and a meal plan. 

My first impressions::::
  • I would need to plan ahead. I ended up grocery shopping on Sundays then making everything I'd need for the week. I made a lot of turkey burgers, Brad grilled chicken for me, I steamed huge amounts of green veggies. 
  • Wow, I can actually eat carbs.
  • I loved how everything was spelled out exactly for me. Yes there were places that I had options as to what to eat, but it wasn't overwhelming. 
  • I'm going to be living in the gym. 
How it actually went::::
  • I do really well with strict directions. I'm a people pleaser and I didn't want to check in with Steve and have to tell him I cheated [which in case you're wondering, I did cheat some, but I was honest with Steve about it. and he didn't sugar coat it for me]. 
  • The meals filled me up. During the first few weeks I was stuffed, which was VERY different from any other meal plan I'd used previously. 
  • The workouts didn't actually take as long as I thought. I got into a good routine of getting up before work to get my workouts in. 
The Results::::
  • I've lost 20 pounds in 12 weeks. 
  • I really wish I'd done measurements before, but I didn't. But I can tell a HUGE difference in how my clothes fit. When I lost the 18 pounds earlier this year, a lot of my smaller clothes were starting to fit. Now they're big on me. So I know I've gained lean muscle in the process, which makes me so happy. 
  • Because I did so well, Steve is doing my next plan for free. He told me to take this week off [from lifting, I'm still eating clean] and we'll start it again next week. I'm so excited to continue this journey with him! 
And I'm beyond mortified to put this picture out there, but I feel like I need to. Please be nice! 

If you have any questions about Fitness Poynters, please let me know! Check out their site and testimonies, they're amazing!

*I received a discounted rate in exchange for blogging about my experience. All opinions are my own. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

rear view mirror:::: september 2012

after a slow two months, i picked it up [a little]. finished with 38 miles for the month, but more important than the numbers, i finished my first half since july. i was beyond worried that i would struggle [new meal plan, new workout plan, etc] but as Jill mentioned to me, apparently cross training suits me! 

i finished the cherokee harvest half marathon, which was number 7 of 12 in 2012. it really hit me this month (the one year anniversary of my first half marathon) how far i've come. this time last year i'd just finished my first half and who knew i'd have finished 8 total now! it really is proof that you can do what you want. i used to think running a half was crazy talk. now i've signed up for my first full [and that IS crazy talk! lol]

weight training::::
september wrapped up my 11th week of my new training plan. i am losing the weight slowly but surely. it's crazy how strong i feel though! i really wish i had one of those things to measure body fat percentage... I think it'd be very interesting to see how much that has changed. another interesting thing, i actually weighed what i do right now around april of this year [then managed to gain back the 18 pounds i'd lost plus some] but my clothes fit SO differently from how they did then. i put on a pair of capris yesterday and they literally almost fell off. it was awesome! so even though the scale might be moving a little slower than i'd like, i know i'm gaining lean muscle in the process and that's VERY important to me!

crossed:  i am really enjoying this series but unfortunately the last book doesn't come out until november. it's a cross between the hunger games and the maze runner series. set in the future where the government has decided that we are overstimulated and it keeps us from reaching our full potential. so they get rid of so much  art, writings, etc and leave them with the 100 paintings, 100 songs, so on and so forth. they also match them with their mates and kill the citizens on their 70th birthdays. but there is an uprising and a love story involved. 

this is why you're fat: i downloaded this book while i was in tybee in june. i was out of books and i was also mad at myself for how i'd let all the weight i'd lost come right back. i quit reading it when i decided to try the fitness poynters plan. i went back and finished it when i realized that the third book in the crossed series wasn't out yet! it all made a lot of sense, but i didn't agree with everything in it. her meal plan is pretty good though. if you want it though, i'd recommend getting it in printed form vs. the digital copy. it's a book you'd need readily available and want to be able to flip through it. 

left behind & tribulation force: i am really enjoying this series. i'd started reading it a few years back [my mom had read them and recommended them] but honestly they scared me and i wasn't ready to read them. now i can't put them down but when i do it's mostly to spend more time reading the Bible. i know they're just one person's interpretation of the end of times, but i've really enjoyed them and they've helped me to become more focused on my walk with God. 


  • my best friend got married last month! we traveled to ky for the beautiful ceremony which was in a vineyard. it was so wonderful to celebrate with friends that have become family over the years.
  • we were able to drive up to cincinnati after the wedding and watch the reds play with brad's parents. they're in the playoffs so brad's pretty pumped. 
  • i held a bridal shower at my house for another one of my friends that's getting married. it was the first thing like that i've ever hosted and i was pretty pleased with how it turned out. 
  • i got to drive home and see my family and also my sweet aunt who is battling breast cancer. i always love time with the fam and it was especially great to see sherri. she's an amazing person who's fighting a battle right now. it would mean the world to me if you all would keep her in your prayers.
  • brad took me to the pumpkin patch (my favorite fall activity)!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Cherokee Harvest Half Marathon 2012:::: Race Recap & Review

cherokee harvest half marathon & 5k
half mary # 8
race# 7 of 12 in 2012
time:  2:16:21 
overall:  140/185
age group: 9/13

to my knowledge, there was no expo for this race. race day packet pick up was available (always a plus in my opinion). 

race morning:
i got up early to make the drive to cherokee. this guy was super excited about my race!

more like he was super excited to get fed :)

 cherokee is about an hour outside of asheville and i'd never been there before so i wanted to make sure i'd have plenty of time to get there. i had trouble finding the start line/packet pick up area. i would have definitely appreciated some signs! parking was great, packet pick up took 5 minutes and the volunteers were super friendly and helpful. there weren't a lot of port-o-potties, but the lines weren't long, so i'd say there were plenty. 

personally this race morning was a little different. typically my race morning breakfast is a clif bar and some G2. with my new eating plan i was up in the air as to what to eat. i typically eat egg whites, a slice of ezekiel bread, and a half a banana. for race morning the only thing i changed was that i added about a teaspoon of natural PB on my bread. it seemed to work pretty well for me. i didn't have any stomach upset and i wasn't hungry immediately. 

my goals for this race were pretty broad. i really wanted to finish in under 2:30. but i wasn't going to be crushed if it didn't happen. i'd shared it with you all... august and september have been VERY LOW mileage months. 

the race:
if i could describe this race in one word... it'd be BEAUTIFUL. talk about beautiful scenery. rivers, streams, leaves, trees... beautiful! the volunteers were amazing. so helpful and friendly! as you can tell from the pictures, it was dreary and rainy during the race. those volunteers were out in the rain with us with smiles on their faces. you've gotta appreciate that! 

there were water stops every 2 miles, they gave out hammer gels around mile 8, they had water and gatorade and pretzels at some stops. great course support!

the race measured a little short on my garmin, coming in around 12.65 miles. the course was mostly flat aside from one BIG hill around mile 6 (i think). and you better believe i walked up that baby!

my race:
this race went amazingly well for me considering my low mileage. apparently all that cross training has been very effective at keeping me in shape! the first five miles went really well, and i was able to follow my usual fuel plan and took 1 shot blok every mile starting at mile 7. i didn't take any gatorade during the race [i usually do after mile 5 or so] and i feel like it affected me. i'm going to experiment with salt tabs because i felt a little crampy after the race. i also got that dehydrated feeling towards the end so i started taking 2 waters at the stops. 

we received awesome handmade medals at the finish line. 

we also got a long sleeved technical shirt that i'm loving, but it's a little big on me. brad is trying to steal it like none other. i told him absolutely not! because i was in the first 300 racers to register, I also got some extra swag:  a Nike N7 shirt, a drawstring bag, and a fleece toboggan. All extremely nice, especially for such a small race!

i am really looking forward to doing this race again next year. it was a great time, a beautiful course, and it was very well supplied. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Cherokee Harvest Half Marathon in Pictures

I'll get to the race recap asap, but in the meantime, here are the photos from Saturday's race:  [Christopher Graphics Even Photography].