Tag Archives: exercise

SUMMER RECAP: Fitspiration

Just like last year, I took a break from blogging for a few months – I mean, summer IS the prime season for social events and outdoor activities. But apart from that, it gave me the opportunity to dabble in a side job, reprioritize my life, set aside some much-needed time for myself, and improve some aspects of my lifestyle that I wasn’t satisfied with. But since I can’t recap my entire summer in a single post, I’ve decided to do a series of entries to get all my followers caught up. Enjoy! :)

I think it’s about time I make a confession – something I haven’t been fully honest about to even some of my closest friends. During my senior year of college I was diagnosed with body dysmorphia, brought on by my already existing generalized anxiety disorder and mild obsessive compulsive disorder. 80% of the time, I look in the mirror and see myself anywhere from 20 to 60 lbs heavier. Some nights, I will still spend hours at a time poring over my facial imperfections in photos uploaded on Facebook. It’s only under very rare and specific conditions that I see myself accurately. And when I do, I end up spending the whole night crying.

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With that said, over the past few summer months a friend introduced me to the concept of fitspiration. It became popular after pro-anorexia and pro-bulimia blogs started getting banned from Tumblr. The idea is to see “fitness” as the goal, not “skinny”. Since then, I’ve been eating a lot cleaner, and focusing more on toning. And although the number on the scale has remained the same, I can definitely see the change in my body. Most importantly, I’ve learned that being fit is not a fad that you do temporarily until you’re happy with yourself; it’s an entire lifestyle change.

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Three things I’ve recently added into my regimen are: oatmeal, biking, and light weight training. Every morning for breakfast, I used to have yogurt with granola. And while it’s a fantastic option, it doesn’t fill me up. And because I can’t take a break for a small snack on busy work days, I would always end up overeating during my lunch break. Oatmeal is plenty filling and contains soluble fiber, of which I otherwise don’t get much of throughout the rest of the day. It’s great for your heart and digestive system, and tastes so good with some fruit, walnuts, and a dash of brown sugar! But personally, I prefer the texture of the old-fashioned rolled oats over the all-too-mushy instant oatmeal.

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As for biking, my boyfriend and I go for about 5 or 6 miles every Sunday morning – usually in a local scenic spot like Alley Pond Park or Bayside Marina near Fort Totten. It’s a great addition to our weekly schedule, and it’s so much easier to get motivated to exercise when you have a workout buddy. Unfortunately, my old bicycle that I used to cruise around my college campus with is now a dilapidated mess. Not fit for riding anymore, I’ve been borrowing my brother’s. I plan to invest in a speedy new one in the near future, though. :)

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And last, but not least, is light weight training. It all started when my regular Zumba instructor was out for the whole month of August. The substitute incorporated dumbbells into our dance moves, and you can really feel the resistance and burn in your arms after a few minutes! I was able to score a weight set on Amazon for an amazing deal, so every other night I do a bunch of reps for a more toned upper body. And in the relatively short time I’ve been doing it, I can already see more defined biceps! I really want to keep this up, since it takes more work to get rid of the dreaded “bra bulge”. Wish me luck!
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Bicycle > Car

I was planning to retake my road exam this summer, and hopefully earn myself a driver’s license, but I just don’t see the point. I live in New York City, where public transportation will save me more money in the long run than paying for gas ever will. I don’t even think I’ll be able to afford a car for a really long time.

Which is why I’ve made the decision to invest in a new bicycle. I haven’t ridden my old mountain bike in over six years, and with good reason – the frame is rusted, the tires have holes, the leaning-forward position that it forces my body into is uncomfortable, and the handlebar brakes are difficult for my tiny hands to use. It’s been sitting in the garage for what seems like forever.

Last night, I spent hours researching online and came to the conclusion that a comfort or cruiser bicycle would fit my lifestyle the best. It’s not like I’m going to be riding this thing through the woods, dirt, or grass. :P After browsing many brands and models on the internet, I found the Huffy 24″ Burgundy Girls’ Cranbrook Cruiser Bike for only $89.97! :o At first, I was suspicious of the really cheap price tag, but the reviews on the website convinced me that this would be a great deal for its value. :DAlthough I don’t plan to purchase it until mid Summer, despite its free shipping and pick-up at my local Wal-Mart, I’m already way too excited. :P I can already imagine how useful it will be to me!

1) I won’t ever have to walk around campus next semester – bike racks are plentiful outside of every residential and academic building. All my classes will be at the hospital next year, too, which isn’t the most enjoyable or convenient walk from my dorm room. But biking there would be a breeze! :D

2) I would be able to travel between my building and Michael’s apartment in no time without walking through the sketchy path in the woods on a hill that students have dubbed “the rape trail”. >.<;

3) I’d have the coolest bicycle on campus, obviously. Or at least my entire quad. I love the old-fashioned, retro look of this bike. To be honest, I can’t imagine myself riding one that looked any sportier. XD It’s simple and single-geared, which I adore. And did I mention that red is one of my favorite colors? :o

4) Recreational rides around the town. Enough said. :D The fact that it’s a 24″ bicycle, not the standard adult-sized 26″, is also great! I’m only 4’11” tall, so getting a full-sized bike probably wouldn’t be the best idea. :P

Should I buy a basket to attach to the front? ; )

Gaining Weight Sucks

I’m tired of my constant weight fluctuations. I’m still not sure if it’s mostly water or not, but I stepped on the scale last night to find myself a whole five pounds heavier than last week. :'( So I’ve come to the conclusion that this must end. What I did during a couple semesters ago, to keep myself from gaining the “freshman fifteen”, was good old calorie counting. I kept a small notepad in my purse wherever I went, wrote down everything I ate that day, and an estimation of how many calories they were worth. I tried to keep below a 1400-calorie total on most days, drank only water, and it worked out pretty well for me.

Unfortunately, my binge eating has increased to a dangerous rate. There’s been a heat wave for the past couple of days – leading me to live on a diet comprised solely of ice cream, Italian ice, Nutella sandwiches, and sweetened beverages. >.<; For the next two months, I’ll just try to watch what I eat, and go out for longer power walks around my neighborhood in the evening. My daily goal is about 1200 or under, since I spend most days just sitting around and working indoors. Hopefully, the pounds will melt right off in this ridiculous heat. x_x

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Here’s my log for today, to show you guys an example:

[7.7.2010]
200 – cereal & milk
160 – turkey & wheat bread
600 – salad, rice, & bbq pork
180 – Neapolitan ice cream
000 – Diet Peach Iced Tea
1140 total calories