Wow! What a difference a week can make! I’m so excited to share the details of my super awesome training session with you, but first I want to review what I’ve been up to for the week in between sessions.
As you may recall from the last blog post, “Personal Trainer Week 2: setting goals and creating what you want to be a part of” I was given homework by my trainer. One of the homework challenges was to make some changes in my diet, which I’m proud to say I’ve been following quite nicely. I’ve increased my daily protein, with the help of Raw Protein from Garden of Life™ and enjoy a smoothie or shake a couple times per day on top of a healthy diet of whole, non processed foods.
The biggest homework challenge for me was increasing my fiber level to the minimum of 30g per day my trainer suggested. Although I eat a lot of organic veggies and fruit, that much of an increase was hard for me to do, so I am supplementing with Raw Fiber from Garden of Life™. I add one scoop to my smoothie which increases my fiber intake by 9g. It’s great for the digestive system, but it does make me a bit gassy. That unpleasant side effect seems to be getting better as time goes on. I think my poor body may be in shock from all of the changes!
I’m very lucky that my husband is so supportive and completely on board in joining me in this new lifestyle journey. We go to the gym together to work out a couple of times a week and even went on a wonderful Father’s Day bike ride on the beautiful Colorado scenic trails. I can’t imagine doing all of this without his love and support.
We’ve been experimenting with healthy recipes too! Thank goodness for Pinterest™. This wonderful online bulletin board website has oodles of healthy recipes to choose from! Our favorite this week was Quinoa Salad With Cucumbers and Feta, originally pinned from www.tastykitchen.com. I made some modifications to the original recipe and it was super yummy and very filling. So here’s my version:
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1 whole cucumber peeled and diced
1 whole red pepper, cored and diced
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, minced (could use parsley or dill as well)
1/4 cup green onion, finely minced
1/4 cup shallot, finely chopped
1/2 left over New York Strip steak, cut into thin strips
crumbled feta (I’m avoiding dairy so I left the feta out of mine, but my husband added it to his)
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 1/2 Tblsp Madhava Honey™
1 Tblsp Dijon mustard
fresh ground black pepper to taste
Combine the dressing ingredients. Set aside.
Rinse quinoa well before cooking to remove slightly bitter coating. Place quinoa and water in a pan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Place in a large bowl and allow to cool to room temperature.
In a large bowl, combine chopped vegetables including chopped herbs of your choice. Add quinoa, and cheese and gently mix.
Add dressing, gently toss again, adding more salt and pepper if needed. Cover and chill for 1 to 2 hours to allow flavors to blend.
Garnish with fresh herbs or sliced tomatoes.
Quinoa is a healthy alternative to processed food like pasta. Try it! You’ll love it!
This Week’s Training Session
It’s been VERY hot and dry here in Colorado and the heat was really zapping my energy. I had to force myself to go to this session and I’m SO glad that I did! The first thing I noticed is that I was MUCH stronger than the week before! We added an additional rep of the difficult exercises and even increased the weight on a couple of them. It was by no means easy, but like Erica says to me every week, “nothing worth having is ever easy”. I did fill with a sense of pride and accomplishment when she gave me a high-five and told me I “had an AWESOME plank”! I had added approx. 15 sec to my time the week before and it felt G-O-O-D! YES! I’m getting stronger!
We the ended my workout with interval or burst training on the stationary bike and I was pretty wiped out! My whole body felt like a limp noodle, but I was so proud of myself for everything that I had accomplished. As we finished the stretching routine I stood up and suddenly felt MUCH more flexible than I had ever felt. Taking advantage of the new-found feeling I bent over slowly and came just millimeters from touching my toes.
What’s the big deal about touching my toes you ask? Well, it’s really not a big deal to most people, but for me it’s something I’ve never been able to do. Seriously. I don’t remember a time when I’ve ever been able to put my feet together, bend over at the waist and touch my toes. Erica saw my excitement, had me do a few additional stretches and told me to try again. Guess what? I DID IT!!!! I was one excited lady dancing around the gym, all because I had touched my toes!
You see, you have to celebrate the small successes along the way or it will be a VERY long journey. That spark of excitement and energy I got from that one small accomplishment had charged me for the next week. I couldn’t wait to tell my husband, or anyone that would listen for that matter! Let’s sum up my small success this week:
- I am eating healthy with increased fiber and protein
- I am still off of caffeine
- I am working out regularly with my husband and independently
- I have “an AWESOME plank”
- I added additional weight and reps to my workout routine
- and most exciting of all in my opinion: I can now touch my toes!!!
Next week my hubby and I are going back to “The Motherland” to celebrate our October 2011 wedding with our Midwestern family and friends. It will be a challenge to continue with the diet and exercise goals, but both Steve and I are up for that challenge!
In the meantime I challenge YOU to celebrate YOUR small successes whatever they may be!