Monday, May 27, 2013

Things I've learned from my Boyfriend

Steve got me this shirt....It's my favorite

Here's a closer look. Women always compliment me on this shirt.
In honor of my one year anniversary wiff my Boo, I wanted to impart all the things I've learned over this past year with him....Let's go back in time....actually, more like 10 months ago...*enter '80s dream Harp music*

Before we went on our first date, we text (constantly) and called each other for about a month and a half. Obviously, you get to know someone very well by then so I was aware of his healthy diet and strong fitness background. I was a hot mess. Well, what I thought was healthy really wasn't but of course, I had convinced myself that because I THOUGHT I was healthy it was going to magically matriculate into healthy habits. If that sounds convoluted, it's because IT IS! 

If I can't hear you tell me I'm not healthy, it's not true. FACT. 

Steve planned our entire first date. Our first stop was a small diner that had breakfast food served all day. My effing favorite because who doesn't love pancakes at all hours of the day? The devil. that's who. Anywho, I took a peek at the menu and set my eyes on something I knew was sent from the heaven's above, The Ultimate Platter. It was basically a platter for Champions like myself. It consisted of 2 eggs, sausage, homestyle potatoes, bacon, and a short order of pancakes the size of Shaq's face. Oh yeah....oh shiz, should I pretend to eat healthy here? Nah, it's a date, we're supposed to eat desserts and strawberries and decadent sexy stuff, right? (bacon's sexy. Don't question me.) He asks me what I'm having and I tell him my about my pork dream platter. "The Ultimate sounds pretty good!" Steve assured. When the waiter came around, he took my order and Steve ordered his, "I'll have the steamed salmon with 2 egg whites, 2 bacon and a side of fresh fruit." 

I knew it when I heard it. I was Bamboozled. He did the ol' switcheroo on me. Tryna Ack better than me! Oh Hellz no! All of the sudden I was offended! I thought to myself, 'Why didn't he order what I ordered? Didn't he know that was going to make me feel uncomfortable?' then it hit me. This guy wasn't here to impressed me, he was just going to be himself.      I. was. impressed.    For the first time, I realized I was being insecure and wanted him to validate my bad habits through excuses I thought were socially permissible.    I still had to question just to make sure this wasn't a facade. "Why didn't you order The Ultimate." Steve: "I don't eat that stuff."  *GASP!*     !!SHOCK!     !!AWE!!!!    *A kitten being thrown into bath water!* (I'm trying to paint the drama of the situation)     So, hold up, hold up, hold up...You don't EAT that stuff? That doesn't make sense. That's not even science. We were on a first date. Does that mean nothing to him? Then, another revelation... 'Why the hell would it?! It's a friggin' date, not his last meal.' I knew I would learn a lot from him just on that first date. It's been a year now and I'd like to bestow on you some wisdom that might be your paradigm. 

1) Don't let people around you dictate what you eat. 
This was hard for me to understand. As women, we're naturally nurturing. We want everyone to feel comfortable and not be a bother to anyone. Who wants to be the wet blanket ordering grilled chicken breast with a side of steamed vegetables on a double date? no one. Steve's train of thought "who gives crap what they think, it's my food going into my body!" He is so much right! No one else but me is going to feel the effects of a greasy burger with double cheese and chilli fries. For what? so THEY don't feel uncomfortable eating garbage? That's just their insecurities disguised as common courtesy. 

Not my problem, Bish!

2) You can really eat anywhere. really. 
This was my second trap. Every time we went out, I would argue, "You should pick. You're the one that eats healthy!" and he would always assure me that it was fine, he can really eat anywhere. I wasn't until I noticed that no matter where we went, crappy diner, hole in the wall restaurant, Pork Palace, he would modify a semi decent dish into a healthy meal....ANYWHERE. At first it was like magic, then I caught on. Oh, no cheese. Two sides of veggies, please. Just chicken breast, no sauce. Water, always. No apps, no 'sserts (parks and rec reference for you boring folks.) The modifications weren't outrageous either, it's not like he had the waiter ask the chef if the bean sprouts were Organic and fair trade. So seriously, after a year of eating out A LOT, we haven't found a place where we couldn't eat within our Paleo lifestyle. 

3) Stop being spoiled by food. 
Back when I was a tot, my gangster ass mom would cook different meals every night. Slaving over a hot kitchen making meals from scratch. For some reason, it never occurred to me that I could have "simple dinners" (as Steve referred it to, I called it boring) several times a week...and even at RESTAURANTS! The Horror! Fish and veggies?! at Red Lobster?! NO CHEESE BISCUITS? Why are we even calling ourselves American!? This was mind blowing...until I realized that we weren't paying people for a fine dining experience, we were paying for the convenience of someone making food we were too lazy to make. So many times I feel like I should order what my gut heart yearns for because this is special! I'm out with my boyfriend on a date....until of course, you realize you go out several times a week. Reevaluate what you consider special....just like your mom did with you. HA! jk

4) Push yourself every time you work out.... Hard. from the back. 
There were days I'd go out for a 3 mile jog and come back looking like a fresh daisy, take a shower and be done with my "workout". When Steve works out, if he's not sweating like a Miami hooker on night shift, he's not done with his workout. Since he introduced me to Crossfit, there hasn't been a workout where I didn't sweat through every piece of clothing on me and halfway through a cold shower. If you know you don't have the ability to push yourself like you need to, I strongly suggest Crossfit. Not only do the classes provide you with confidence and excellent training, they teach you to program workouts for yourself when you're not around a box (Crossfit gym). 

Overall, I've learned so much more but these were the ones that really hit it home for me. I'm so grateful for his patience with my subborness, his kindness, and his love. He has never been frustrated with my slow progression or berated me into fitness like so many other guys have tried. He's everything I've ever looked for, not just in a partner but a person. He has made me a better person in a way I never thought was possible. 

Steve, I love you so much. Happy Anniversary. 

Friday, May 24, 2013

OPERATION TiredAsPhuck: An After Action Report

I'd like to start of by saying that I don't even know how I'm awake right now. You know that feeling as your falling asleep when you're in and out of dreaming but you're not sure which state you're in? One minute you're thinking about what you have planned for tomorrow "Let's see I gotta get some groceries, don't forget the foot cream and drop off your mom's birthday present from last month at the post office." then BAM! "You know what, the car is too slow. I'm going to take the flying dragon from Avatar. Everything will be done before I have lunch with Sinbad." That's my life, since last week. Everything was going so well and out of nowhere, I get called up to do a week long work event where have to take the night shift. 10pm to 730am and a full college course load. Driving an hour to and from work and going to school only left me available for naps and snacks. That's right...not even a full nights sleep. Here's how I did it.

1) Sleep was my #1 priority. The magic number of minutes you need to be productive is a 30 minutes. Any less, you will feel MORE tired; any more, you'll end up groggy for hours. No matter how little time I had between work, school and one job interview, I tried to get a nap in. I would hop in some yoga pants, soft tank top, set up the timer on my phone and apologetically take a nap. It's enough time for your brain to rest effectively but not go into a deep sleep where it's hard for your body to bounce back from drowsy-ness. You will pop up out of bed and be good to go for hours. Make sure the room is DARK as possible (wear an eye mask if you have it), get into your most comfortable clothes and indulge in a nap. When I had 4 1/2 hours to sleep, I did the same thing so my body knew what time it was.

If its a meme, it has to be true

2) Eat as Healthy as possible. This was easier than it sounds because of my sleeping habits. I wasn't dying of sleepiness so I didn't have to succumb to eating junk food for energy. Instead of going to fast food places near by or eating at restaurants, I looked for grocery stores. A quick wrap, a premade salad with Deli Turkey slices, apples, Broccoli florets, protein shakes and almonds were a constant source of sustenance while I had Munchies at 4 am. If I was eating out of boredom, I made sure I was mindlessly eating healthy food. Whenever someone offered me junk, I said, "No thank you, I don't eat junk food" Instantly so people know I was 100% about business, 100% of the time. You might think about how hard it is to stay healthy is a stressful situation but think of it this way, of all the times you need to be healthy, this is it! In a situation where it is acceptable to fall apart understandably, you need to be stronger than ever. Just like when someone passes away, everyone would understand if you wanted to lay in bed all day and cry but what you really need to do is be strong and take care of your kids/home/spouse or what have you. I found it in myself to really put things in perspective and maintain control when everything felt like it was falling apart.

These were FREE and available to anyone who wanted them...all of them were "share" size. Why is the world cruel?

3) Eat as little Carbs as possible. Like I said before, eating healthy is important but the type of healthy food was important to my sugar levels. I refrained from brown rice, the tortilla part of a wrap, and anything remotely starchy. My sugar levels never dipped or sky-rocketed...couple that with good sleep and I was never starving for anything. Did you know that if you're sleepy, your body craves carbs for that immediate sugar high of energy? Well, the vicious cycle is that you come down quickly as well and it starts over again...I wasn't going to let myself be the hamster in that circle.

4) Limit the Caffeine. I know, it sounds sacrilegious but I would only have one source of caffeine in the "morning" (10 pm) and the rest of the time I felt tired, I would either eat or nap. My concept for these shenanigans is that I needed to sleep better than I needed to stay awake. Make sense? When I needed to nap, I really needed to be able to do it at the drop of a hat. And boy did I ever! As soon as my noggin hit that cool pillow, I was out... like a tits in a low cut tank. no wait, not the right expression but you need to understand how imperative it was to get sleep in when I had the time to do it. Otherwise, I would probably be laying in bed wide awake, and end up drooling in class.

5) Work out even a little bit. I didn't have time to go to crossfit but I did have time to workout at home. Some days it was a full WOD other days? maybe 50 air squats. Was it beneficial? I don't know. Maybe. But the fact is, I didn't want to lose the habit. Maintaining that habit will help you through a myriad of problems. It lets your brain and body know that you're NOT going to let a schedule change affect your workout habits. Even with all the VALID excuses I had, they were still excuses and I didn't want it to roll into an avalanche of excuses over time. The benefit was that I got better sleep, more energy, and I even felt the nice sting of soreness which is an excellent reminder of accomplishment.

6) Be Nice! When I had the chance to be kind, I was. It wasn't just a stressful time for me but for everyone I worked with and everyone had their own demons to battle while they were exhausted and frustrated. If I could offer some comic relief, I would try to be chipper and crack a few jokes to break the tension. This also helped out when I needed to leave early to go to class or people would cut me a break when I needed to come in a few minutes late. At home, my wonderful BF made sure to make me meals when he was around or take care of my dog when I was running around switching my out of work clothes, yoga pants back into regular clothes twice a day. He also had my apartment cleaned up, stocked the fridge and kept the dog quiet while I napped. I'm not sure if it was because I didn't bitch about every single miserable moment of my day but I'm sure it helped. He's also just kind of amazing all on his there's that. Regardless of how you're feeling, you're not going to get ahead by being an A$$hole. That I know for sure.

7) Being Grateful. When you feel like you never have enough time, food or sleep, it's easy to forget all your blessings. When things were getting out of control, I took about 5-10 mins to think about all the good things I had going on. I was getting paid GOOD money to go to work. I had the finances and opportunity to buy and eat healthy food. I had a nice comfortable bed to sleep in when I needed it. My car got me to and from work  quickly and efficiently. My professors were really funny and made me enjoy the class (even Organic Chemistry...someone give that guy a medal). My boyfriend was extremely supportive and all around incredible. It made everything else seem insignificant and lightened my mood which in turn made all of these rules a lot more manageable.

Now it's all over, I think I broke a personal sleep record of 12 hours and I haven't gained a single pound! Matter of fact, I think I can see more of my abs and lost the fat above my belly button. I would take a picture but I'm stinking tired and I still have that lunch date with Sinbad.......

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Str8 Flexin'

I was surfing my favorite fitblr accounts today, most consisting of healthy eating habits and really hot chicks with bad ass muscle definition. Then I was thinking about how unrealistic it is for someone, especially a woman to be ripped ALL THE TIME. It's possible, but not likely on most women. I have a few friends who compete in bodybuilding. They work out like beasts for 2-3 hours a day, 6 days a week and basically eat chicken, yams and spinach for every single meal. They are straight jacked on stage. There's no other way to put it. When they are in regular clothes, other than shapely legs and defined arms, they look normal. You can't see their abs through their shirt and they aren't ripping off their pants like NBA players in the playoffs. The truth is, just like fashion magazines, fitness magazines are filled with unrealistic standards. I used to cut out my favorite fitness models and post them up in my kitchen cabinets for motivation, unknowing that these models themselves didn't look like THAT all year round either. They are PAID to look like that. I remember taking down those cutouts when one of my favorite fitness models address the topic in an interview and basically laid it out there for everyone to know that most fitness models go through "seasons" where a magazine with book them for the "AB" issue and she would have to eat extra clean and work her abs more often. The magazine basically paid for a look and then add whatever they want to the cover to lure you in..."Lose 10 pounds by Friday!" "Best exercise regime for a six pack"...all enticing you to think if you read those articles, you'll look like that model.

The point is, I don't want that to be me. Obviously, I'm not saying I'm no where near looking like a fitness model but I want to be completely honest in my gains and losses. If I get more muscle, I want to show it and if I gain some weight, you're also going to see those and not even in my best light. It's a torturous feeling to look at someone's progress and wonder why you're the only one going through ups and downs but not knowing that the picture you're looking at is #75 of the day in the best light. It's not right nor is it motivating and that's not what I want this blog to be able. It's honest, everyday health and fitness.

So without further ado, here are some progress pictures of me this morning.

Not too shabby, huh? Well, I'm flexing and this was like my twelfth photo before my abs told me I could go Eff myself.  

Ok, now here's the one of me just standing a lazy no good bum. 

Don't get me wrong, I really like the way I look when I'm not flexing. But the fact is, I don't get very defined anything when I'm just relaxing. It's very possible to get there but those aren't my goals right now. I would have to lose about 7-10 pounds and that's just not what this gangster wants to look like at this moment. I'll post my goals (and why they are goals) some time in the future. 

For now, quit looking at pictures and thinking that silly little tricks in your diet (like NOT getting fries with your burger) are going to get you those rock hard abs or a thinking you're going to look like Gwen Stefani once you've dropped all that weight. You're not. You're going to look like a better version of yourself and you're going to love it. 

Now for the day's events where I scarfed down a bunch of food items in my gullet and almost ripped off my hand calluses. 

Paleo Pancakes from Paleocupboard with honey
2 scrambled eggs

Strawberry banana smoothie

Raw bar made with coconuts, almonds, dates, dark chocolate and something else, can't remember (all organic...that's what matters right?!)

Rotisserie chicken spinach salad with grilled veggies and Fresh Guac
Chai Tea wiff honey
"diet food"


20 Back squats @ 105#'s
25 burpees (why aren't these called suicides?)
30 Toes to Bar
25 burpees (this is when I really thought I was trying to kill myself)
20 Back squat @ 105#'s

then lay on the floor, dead, until your spirit decides it's okay to enter back into your worthless body. 

Monday, May 13, 2013

WOD and Meals


As Many Rounds As Possible (AMRAP) in 20 mins

5 Handstand Pushups
10 Pistol Squats
15 Pullups

I got 7 rounds and 18 reps....barely because I lost my grip on my last Handstand push up and almost busted my face to which I could only imagine would look like this....

"Yeah, I RX'd. It wasn't nothin' but a chicken wing on a string.."

Mango/Papaya Smoothie made with Almond milk, Spirulina, Cod liver oil with DHA,Vanilla Protein Powder and Ice. (sounds gross but tastes like mango creamsicle.

Mid-morning Meal:
2 Eggs and 2 bacon slices

Blueberry Vanilla Raw bar

handful of almonds

Spicy Chicken with Green beans and Guacamole
Raspberry Green Tea (Hot) with Honey

Beats out greasy take out food any day

Sunday, May 12, 2013

WOD and Meals

I'm going to try to post my Work Out of the Day and Meals. This is going to help me gauge where I need improvement to achieve my goals, get me in the habit of posting more often and hopefully give you ideas on health and fitness. I do promise that I will be honest!

Paleo Granola with Vanilla Almond milk (recipe found here: Granola Recipe)
Coffee with Coconut creamer and Stevia

Leftover Paleo "fried rice" (right cheer: Cauliflower fried Rice)

Southwest Chipotle Fish tacos with Coconut flour tortillas (Heaven Sent Paleo Tortillas)
Pico de Gallo

Don't be deceived. I had two of them before I realized I should take a picture....

Fruit salad with mint
Chai Tea
Mint settles the stomach and gets rid of your ratchet breaf!


Find 3 rep max on bench press (ended up at 85#'s...ugh, 10#'s less than my PR)

For time:
500m Row
30 bench press @ 65#
1000m Row
20 bench press
2000m Row
10 bench press

Saturday, May 11, 2013

How to eat healthy while traveling

I just came back from a week long stay in California to visit my mother. I had a layover flight in Memphis, TN, then it was straight to LAX. Everything was all good and well as I had prepared beforehand with a little trip to the grocery store where I bought Larabars and brought my own reusable water bottle. I ended up eating the Larabar ON THE WAY TO THE AIRPORT so in Memphis, a Tuna salad on wilted butter lettuce had to do ($3.99...not bad for airport prices). Feeling all accomplished and victorious from my last unprepared (or deviated) action plan, I figured LAX would have even better options because us Californians are all vain and always hopping onto any food that will allow us to fit into the latest fashion trend. I stopped at The Lemonade Stand that boasted fresh fruit and egg white Chorizo Quiches! I added a coffee to that....$17.99. You know how many bags of Almond flour I could buy with that!??!?! TWO! Yeah...this is the only time I've regretted being insistent on eating Paleo. That's what I get for NOT preparing for traveling and food. There is a list I thought of as I savored every bit of my $18 breakfast.

  • An Apple with a Justin's Almond Butter (sample size sold in peanut butter section individually..perfect for travel)
  • Banana with raw almonds in a snack size bag
  • a Larabar
  • Homemade Larabar! (check out for simple delicious variety!)
  • Paleo Banana Muffins ( excellent with hot coffee on an early flight! Gives you that comfort food you crave.
  • Rolled up Turkey slices with some mustard in the middle...maybe even a pickle because IDGAF about bad breath on a flight. It keeps the weirdos at a comfortable distance.
  • Fruit Salad with a few mint leaves sprinkled in (just in case you do care about your breath, this is sweet and very refreshing...even slightly warm!)
  • Cucumber slices with Lime and salt (a little hot sauce gives it that I'm-really-eating-a-decent-meal feeling)
  • Hard Boiled eggs
  • A snack size bag of Protein Powder to be mixed in with a water bottle
  • Homemade Sweet Potato Chips with Guacamole (travel size guac can be found in the deli isle of the grocery store. The chips can be found in the fruit isle as well but check the label...per usual)
  • Make Pumpkin Paleo pancakes the night before and bring them in a plastic bag. spread some almond butter on the living hell out of them in front of someone eating a greasy overpriced sandwich
  • Chopped up Oranges and apples with lime juice all over them...I put hot sauce on that sucker too because I'm Mexican and I can't taste things unless it's burned into my tongue.
  • Mango know the drill...lime and hot sauce. Or lime and honey! (wuss)
  • Blueberries or cantaloupe/melon slices with prosciutto 
  • Brazil nuts with a peach (preferably sliced up)
  • Be Kind Bar
  • Beef Jerky or a less greasy version - Turkey Jerky
  • Jicama with watermelon with lime juice ESPECIALLY on hot trips! So refreshing, crunchy and overall mouthwatering. 
  • Low Carb Tortillas with hummus and turkey rolled up
  • Cucumber with cilantro jalapeno hummus (so that it's not so plain)
  • Any fruit with a babybel Cheese or even try goat cheese for a creamier more decadent taste
  • Snack size bag of pretzels with laughing cow cheese
  • spiced chickpeas
  • Salted soynuts--They make wasabi soynuts but they were too hot for me've been hereby warned!
  • Low carb tortilla with refried beans...super Mexican but if you're traveling to Cali or Texas you will probably blend in pretty well and make new friends. Oh, it's also high in protein and fiber so yeah, there's that.
You might say I missed a few ideas but really, I was trying to avoid anything I wouldn't eat warm (have you ever tried to eat warm yogurt? Ew, dude. Get that out of my face faster than ASAP!), anything that crumbles, anything that drips or needs napkins, all things super high calorie (read: granola), all things that make your hands sticky because the airport or riding in a car with sticky hands makes me feel like I'm a fresh fly trap except for germs. A disgusting Germ Trap. 

Alright, lets say you decided to ignore all of my snack ideas and you love throwing up cash money at airport terminals as if you're a high roller at a Vegas Strip club. Here are some tips from a former (as of this last trip) high roller:
  • You're going to spend money...lots of it. Might as well be healthy right? Go for the chicken salads sans cheese and creamy dressing. There are plenty of healthy spots sprouting up at airport terminals, look for them and find broth based soups or high veggie sandwiches.
  • Magazine stores always have small snack items. Go for Larabars, BeKind bars, those drinks with a fruit veggie combo, or a small package of raw almonds.
  • Starbucks has new Protein Snack boxes. They look pretty legit. Pair that up with hot coffee. (regular coffee. I know you think you're on vacation but really, you're on the WAY to your vacation. Cut the foo-foo crap out until you get to your destination. Save the extra money for that tequilla shot you'll be taking off a hot cabana boy in Cancun.)
  • At Smootie king, they have a smoothie called a Pep Up. It's a protein, caffeine laden fruit smoothie that tastes amazing and fills you up...go for it. For $5? You should definitely try it. 
  • If all else fails, just think Meat and Veggies. Really stick to it. You have your entire vacation to eat crap food, don't start at the airport. 
This is my list so far, I'll be updating with other ideas as they come to me. I hope it helps out and that you stay healthy even though you have a strange urge to binge eat junk food during long trips (is that just me?). One last thing...Bring a reusable water bottle. Make sure it's empty when you pass the TSA but you can fill it up at the water fountain. It's cheap, reminds you to stay hydrated and acts as an appetite suppressant. Bon Voyage, B!