Thrive Across America in Canada

So my work is participating in this challenge called Thrive Across America. You make teams with your coworkers and then log exercise minutes; the minutes translate into miles across a virtual path that goes from coast-to-coast and everywhere in between. Needless to say, my team is in the top place and I’m second overall. It’s kind of annoying that the only person who is beating me is my boss and I’m the one who logs his progress–we’re now having a friendly competition of our own.

I’m not really sure if I find the contest more motivating than usual. I don’t like that it only focuses on active minutes, rather than intensity and I don’t like that there are no points deducted for days missed or junk food consumed. I’d probably give people points for making healthy food choices, too. 

Here’s to being in the top spot and perhaps overthrowing my boss sometime in the not-so-distant future.

High Intensity Interval Training: Better than Lipo

It may not seem like a lot, but when your body fat percentage is low to begin with, losing 5 lbs takes a lot of work! I’ve been doing HIIT training and it has been working like a charm. In between each set of weight training, I do one minute of really intense, all-out cardio. 

Some benefits of HIIT are outlined in Shape Magazine, they include: increased metabolism, fat loss and muscle gains, results in less time–just to name a few.

I like doing HIIT because I find that my 50 minute workouts fly by and I actually feel like I challenged my body by the end of the session. 

Try this: include one minute of vigorous jumping jacks or jumping rope in between each set during your next workout. If one minute is too much, start at 30 seconds.

 

5 Lunches and Counting

I got really smart last Friday. “Self,” I said, “if you’re too tired to go to the gym by the time you get home, why wait until you get home to go to the gym?”

I joined the 24 hour gym next to my work. Yes, it’s another $40/month, on top of the family gym pass I have at the local rec centre, but I’m thinking of it as more of an investment than another expense.

I have gone 5 lunch hours in a row and I’m feeling great! I take my pre-workout at 11:30, then by 12 I’m out of the office and back by 1. I find I don’t hit the 3pm wall–my afternoons are focused and I’m able to be productive all day. My mood has also lifted significantly, overall. I am eating well–I don’t want to undo all my good work.

The other day, I watched as the girls from another department all went out for lunch…at first I was a bit bummed that I hadn’t gotten an invite (I’m a department of one, so it can be a bit solitary)…but then I was actually and genuinely thankful that I didn’t have to consult with anyone and that my plans weren’t derailed in any way; being a lone wolf has its benefits.

 

 

 

Thursday Inspiration: Ashley Horner

Yes, originally I was biased toward posting about Ashley Horner because obviously her name is awesome (my last name is Horner, I haven’t met very many Horners), but she does the name proud! She is amazingly fit, inspirational, and a totally dedicated hardbody. I follow her Instagram feed, but you can check out her website here.

Not only does Ashley contribute to MMA Uncaged and Fit & FIrm, but she is busy building a brand that is as stellar as her body; she has training programs, nutrition programs, life coaching services, and cookbooks. What is even more impressive is that Ashley is a single mother of two boys. 

Every moment has a purpose. We are given 1,440 minutes in a day, these minutes can not be put in a savings account and they don’t roll over to the next day, once that moment has passed we cant take it back.

                           –Ashley Horner

Image

I found this image online doing a Google search, it’s not mine, I didn’t take it and I will gladly give credit to the person who took it. I have not altered it in any way–she just looks that good! 🙂

Reality Bites

I’m a little bummed out today; I vowed after the last competition that I wouldn’t let myself go and that I’d keep working hard…I didn’t. Now, I’m paying for it. That is not to diminish the strides I’m making toward my goal of competing and placing on June 15, but the fact is that I’m further away from my goal than I was at this point before my last competition. This is just motivation to be more dedicated and work as hard as I can. I guess I’m just disappointed in myself for doing the things I said I wouldn’t. 

I’ve beaten me up enough about it, time to move forward.

Double-Dog Dares

My partner and I are trying to motivate each-other through a little friendly competition:

The person that loses 10lbs first gets to treat themselves to an indulgence of their choice–a new pair of shoes, new jeans, fancy haircut, etc.

I’m at 153.8 lbs–my heaviest in awhile, in fact, I’m about 10 lbs away from my usual weight. 

My reward will probably be an eyebrow threading and a hair colour (at a salon, not the DIY kits I usually buy). 

Mojo Returns!

I’ve gotten my mojo back!

This past week, something has inspired me. I’ve read that champions are not made during the holiday season, and that may be true, but I’ve definitely felt more myself this week than I have in awhile.

Three major causes of the turnaround:

1. My partner is competing in a martial arts tournament at the end of January, so he is dropping 20lbs to compete in a different weight-class. I figure I have about 20lbs to drop to get to competition weight. What a happy coincidence.

2. Again, my partner is not just a supporter, but a great motivator: my Christmas gifts were one-month unlimited hot yoga; coaching sessions with a bikini pro (someone I admire very much and is regularly featured in the health/fitness/meathead magazines I read and subscribe to); and Arnold Schwarzenegger‘s biography. I can’t think of a more inspiring set of gifts!

3. I’ve offered to start training a friend of mine, pro bono, to help her prepare for a trip she’s taking in May. I’m so excited to help her get started on her health and fitness goals! I’m building her a program this week and then we’re getting together to discuss, tweak, and get-started. I’m very much a practice-what-you-preach person–so I’d better start adhering to my health and fitness philosophies, if I’m going to be coaching someone else.

My next post, I’m going to share the program I’m building for my friend–stay tuned!

 

Inspiration: Justine Munro

Justine Munro is not only built, she’s Canadian!

 Just a few accomplishments…

  • 2012 IFBB Greater Gulf States Pro – 2nd Bikini
  • 2012 IFBB Toronto Pro Supershow – 6th Bikini
  • 2012 IFBB Musclecontest.com Pro Bikini – 2nd Bikini
  • 2011 IFBB Olympia – 10th Bikini
  • 2011 IFBB Toronto Pro Supershow – 3rd Bikini
  • 2011 IFBB Pittsburgh Pro Figure and Bikini
  • 2011 IFBB Arnold Classic – 8th Bikini
  • 2010 IFBB Fort Lauderdale Pro – 2nd Bikini
  • 2010 CBBF Canadian National Figure, Fitness & Masters Championships – 1st Bikini Tall & Overall (Pro Card)
  • 2010 OPA Ontario Provincial Championships – 1st Bikini Tall & Overall

And this weekend, Justine placed 8th in the Las Vegas Olympia.

Rant

I feel like such a monster!

I’ve been cutting my calories and carbs so I can get super lean and I’ve been making every workout my best workout. I’m tired and hungry. Tired is actually an understatement, exhausted is more apt. All I can think about is the competition–I’ve booked my hair appointment, I’ve been getting my tan on, I’ve been consistent with supplements (and workouts and diet)…but I feel frustrated, nonetheless: what if I’m just not ready by October 20?

I’m so moody and bitchy. I don’t even want to be around me, I can’t imagine how everyone else in my life must feel. Sure I am looking good, but I’m a cunt of the highest order right now.

5 weeks ago, I felt like October 20th was so far away–now it’s around the corner and I’m freaking ou

Also: Nathalia Melo is the new bikini champ, Olympia 2012, Las Vegas.