Thursday, February 28, 2013

The D-word

Diet. Everyone who is trying to loose weight, well most people, are going on a diet or trying some sort of "quick fix" method. You hear people constantly saying they are on a diet but why not just change your life style instead of restricting yourself. Isn't that common sense?

To me the word diet has a negative connotation and people need to start thinking of food as fuel. Not something bad. Eating from stress or from experiencing different emotions whether they are good or bad isn't what food is for. In fact, I didn't even know the exact definition of diet, I'm looking it up...okay Wikipedia states that in the case of nutrition, diet is the amount of food consumed by a person. Wow! Diet is a basic concept and yet is has a really bad rap.

Society and companies have twisted the word diet into something trendy. We've all been there and tried different diets to look better for vacation or for New Years but the truth is, many and most don't stick to their resolution or diet plans. Diet is just how much food you consume and I will admit that I too was an emotional eater but now I've found peace with it and manage just fine. I know this because I can buy peanut butter and it's still in the fridge a week later and my hand isn't stuck in the jar. It was a real issue.

There are too many things to worry about and what you eat shouldn't be one of them unless you are deathly allergic to nuts! You should just eat raw and unprocessed foods as much as possible. Of course its okay to have a cupcake once in awhile because its a treat but not something you should have all the time. If you are on a path to losing weight, make sure your diet is sustainable and not restrictive because when it's over, you will be back at square one plus some.

Remember, diet isn't a bad word but what we make of it. It's how much food you consume. Stick to your goals and the important things and you will be fine.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

To compete or not compete...

That is the never ending question. I love competing and the way I feel but I just can't seem to commit right now. On Sunday, I even prepped and weighed out 3 protein meals for work and have been eating clean. I thought maybe I would test the waters a little and do a faux prep for 3 weeks and see how I feel and make a decision fro there.

I am really enjoying work and to be training in such a great environment would be awesome but there are other things I want to try. There is a guy in my office would is preparing for his first mini triathlon and it has really started to get my wheels spinning. Do I want to compete or try something new? Right now if I did decide to compete I would be in a great setting to do so being surrounded by so many health conscious and fit people. There is also a gym four floors down from me which would make training easy, well more accessible. I also have all the products I need at my finger tips.

Maybe all this uncertainty is a sign that I am not ready and that I should wait. The problem is, the competition I want to do is in 10 weeks so my program technically would have started on Sunday. Hence the prep. There is another competition I could do in July which would give me a little more time to get settled into my job and try some other things before I commit to 10 weeks of prepping and living at the gym. Not that I am complaining! I just want to be 100% ready.

I am definitely on the fence but with the season starting I am starting to get antsy. It's so hard spilling the beans because I don't want to come out and announce anything unless I am doing it for sure but I hard to get all this off my chest because it's been on my mind! To compete or not compete. That is the question! It might not be this show in May but maybe in July...TBD!

In other news, the March bootcamp looks like its going to be a big event! In fact, Saturday Boot Camps in general are going to be a lot of fun. Don't forget to sign up and put it on your calendar! March 30th at 9:30am. Douglas Park - Boot Camp with me with partial proceeds going to the Ride To Conquer Cancer in support of my sister!

So competing is undecided but other than that life is good :) This year is going to be a good year.

Love Love!


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Location update - Boot camp kick off March 30th - Holla

Bootcamps start Saturday March 30th!
Get your arms, butt and stomach ready for those summer tanks and bikini bottoms
March 30th will be the kick off at Minoru Park in Richmond (Meet in the Gateway Theater Parking lot off Gilbert Street). Due to the demand, we've created a second time for this event. Sign up will be required. See times below.
This camp is not only the kick off but 50% of the proceeds from this camp will be going to my sister who is fundraising for her Ride to Conquer Cancer. What's better than working out for a great cause. (If it rains, the April 13th session will be the kick off)
Cost: $10 drop
Time: 9:30 am or 11 am (rain = cancelled class) - please let me know if you can attend the kick off as I will have a small surprise.

**Please email me,, to sign up and tell me which time you'll be attending***

Duration: 1 hour
No camp April 6th
Starting April 13th:
Camps will be at 9 am every Saturday.
Monthly rate: $40, paid up the first session of the month and is unlimited.
Drop in: $12 (signup will be done every Thursday night - if you are attending)

Prizes every Saturday. Sometime great from Vega :)
Be ready to sweat and have fun

Never take your health for granted - Mark D.

Everybody has a different a different story on why they started their journey with fitness. For me fitness helped me find my voice and gain a sense of confidence that nobody could take from me. For others, fitness can be weight loss goals or lowering cholesterol but for whatever the reason our stories share similar instances when we realize that this is something we love.
When I first began competing and posting picture, people would message me on FB or via email after posting pictures and my daily experiences congratulating me on my journey. After a few months the messages started to change and people we telling me how they were inspired by my story and were now on a journey of their own. Today I would like to share the first story of a man named Mark D. 

To give you some background, Mark was born with a rare bone disease in his hip. This left him with one leg 3 inches shorter than the other. This brought on many challenges. A few years ago he was in a car accident that left him with a compound fracture on his shorter leg. In both cases, he spent almost a year on crutches. Needless to say, these experiences left him with an important lesson. Never take your health for granted. This lesson inspired Marc to join a gym after competing physiotherapy for his fractured leg and this is his story.

Physiotherapy helped Marc learn to strength the muscles around his hip that were compensating for the weaker muscles. He started to notice after doing exercises and stretches his massage therapist suggested that his balance was slowly improving. This was Mark's first fire when he realized that he could be pain free and exercising again by starting with the basics.

When his physio was finished he decided to joined a gym to continue his exercises. They were challenging because he would experience a lot of pain in his hip and struggled balancing which made normal activities difficult. At one point the pain was so bad that he wasn't able to tie his own shoes. These challenges weren't just physical but mental as well as his weight started to increase.

This inspired Mark to get into a routine and to stay on track because if he didn't, he would be back where he started and the pain would come back. Small changes have impacted his life and today he has lost 25 pounds! He is continuing on his journey and plans to loose 20-25 pounds and maintain his healthy new weight.

Mark wants to help inspire others by sharing his story and by telling anyone who is starting to just "get off the couch and do it. You could think of a 1000 excuses not to do it but you only need one reason to do it. Your health." I love that! You only need one excuses to go do what you want to do. There is nothing more important than your health. If you are just starting out, ease into a routine and do a little more each time. Too often people get discouraged and give up because they start too quickly and don't get instant gratification. Losing weight and creating a new habit takes time and patience.

It wasn't always easy. Procrastination is something that we all feel and Mark could attest by saying he's never wanted to give up but has had moments where he didn't want to do it. In this moment he remembers that his procrastination is what added to his weight gain uses that as motivation. He also uses other people inspiration as fuel to overcome these moments or when pushing through a workout. Mark admits to falling off the wagon, but we've all been there but it's what makes you get back on that makes you stronger. He uses visualization to get back on by thinking about people he knows training twice a day or by visualizing how good he will feel after a workout.

Mark's currently working on cardio to shed those initial pounds and does between 25 and 45 minutes on the elliptical every other day or two days on one day off. Finding balance is important and what works for you but the most crucial thing is to go. When he first started his cardio routine he was at level 6 but has worked his way up to level 14! Whenever he feels his workouts are getting easier he ups the tension and keeps going. In addition to cardio, he is also doing weights to strength his upper body. He naturally has a good build and wants to keep the muscle he currently has and maintain this regime.

Sharing your journey is like airing dirty laundry and takes a lot of guts but you never know how your story will inspire others. Mark is an inspiration and shows how doing a little planning and preparation can go a long way. Start off by making a weekly date with the gym and stick to it and cutting out one thing at a time can help you ease into your new routine. Mark's go to snack is a Mac Apple with a bit of peanut butter or some fresh pineapple.

I really enjoyed learning about Mark's journey and wanted to share his experience in hopes that it would inspire you with your goals. We all have goals but the difference it some people stick to theirs and others don't. It's okay to fall off the wagon but you have to get back on. It will get easier everyday and in no time you will be on your way.

Yours in health and fitness,


Tuesday, February 12, 2013 we go.

Yesterday my sister came over for family day and we made an awesome dinner and spent a lot of time discussing lent. My sister has decided to give up her love of chocolate for the next 40 days and it really got me thinking. What should I do for lent?!

The first thing that came to mind was sugar. I don't know why because I don't consume a lot of sugar and when I say sugar, I mean sugar that isn't naturally occurring. That would just be ridiculous! After I debated about the idea of giving up sugar, which would mean I wouldn't get my Vegan Cupcake from Whole Foods, I turned to coffee.

I love getting settled in the morning or writing on the weekend with a good cup of coffee. I can openly admit that I use coffee as a crutch when I am hitting a slump or need a good pick me up before the gym. I know I should ween myself off coffee and switch to tea which might be a lot easier in my new work environment. Tea is the thing to drink and I can always have a Vega pre-workout drink.

My rule of thumb as you know when it comes to sticking to a goal, is sharing it with the world. It helps keep you on the straight and narrow. Today is the first day and probably the easiest because you are all gung-hoe about it but for the next 40 days, I am going coffee free (and sugar free). Leave it to me to pick two things for lent but I need to do both.

I'm excited for the Easter Long weekend when it is over to see how it went. It's fun that my sister and I are both doing it. We tried talking Brett into it but he wasn't easily persuaded. Good thing I picked up Arlene Dickinson's book Persuasion this weekend at the library. Maybe I'll be better at persuasion next year and have him on board for Lent.

I hope you all had a great long weekend. If you have given something up for lent, I'd love to know. Leave a comment and share :) It helps keep you responsible.


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Start your day off with a smoothie...

Is how my first day of work started after a chipper conversation with, Sami, the other Inside Sales Rep. My manager and supervisor took us for a tour of the building but not after directing us to make a smoothie and to help ourselves to anything in the fridge! Berries, Kale, Almond milk and butter and Proteins galore! I think I’ve died and gone to heaven.
The environment in my new work place is AMAZE-tastic or as I would now like to say, VEGA-TASTIC! No more prepping food for me, breakfast and lunch provided by their supply of food and an in house chef Morgan who I'm sure I will be BFF's with by the end of the week. You know how much I love food. The rumor is her Pho creates a line through the office it is so delicious.
I wish Miss Frizzle was my shuttle driver...
After taking transit yesterday for the first time to get to work, it was pretty good. When I got to work I discovered that there is a shuttle bus from the sky train to work which got me here a little earlier today...The bus is great place to read and I have a few books I still need to read. The thing I have found most entertaining about going back into office world is that I know what I am going to wear the night before (usually stick to it), it takes me 5 minutes to put my face on but my dilly-dallying takes up most of my morning.
Last night I got to spend some time with my good friend Cassidy. We are both OB-sessed with the BL aka the Biggest Loser for those of you who don't know. We went for a long walk, grabbed sushi and put in a few hours watching the Bachelor (Tierra = cray cray) and the BL. Thank goodness for PVR. It has been great to be back in Vancouver but I've missed my bestie in Victoria and hanging with Cassidy was a good break.
I am super happy to be back in town, starting (my amazing) new job and bragging. My boyfriend just got 97% on his first test back at school this semester. And he was worried and to give you some insight he had a perfect GPA in his last semester. He has being my rock the last few months and I'm excited for us to start another new journey back at home.
Two things I need work on. My dilly dallying while hanging with Sophie Lui and Steve Darling and taking the bus. Have a great Tuesday :)