Summer Lovin’ Fruit

You’re mission, should you choose to accept it:

Eat seasonal produce.

Seriously, it’s that simple. The more foods that you don’t have to cook, that don’t come in packages, the better. Try getting produce from local farmer’s markets, local grocers that contract with local farmers, and companies like Farm Fresh To You that deliver fresh local produce to your door. The more you can eat what grows seasonally, the better your body will respond to the micro-nutrients.

Fruit is more prevalent in the summer simply because our bodies need a bit more help cooling off in warmer weather. And since central air conditioning wasn’t readily available for most of our history, we’ve needed some way of beatin’ the heat.

If you live in an area that’s been bombarded by hot weather recently (and here I’ve been complaining that we’ve had weather in the 80*s, pfft. i’m kinda spoiled), pick fruits that are experts in hydration:

 

And, as always, try to eat organic. I know it can get expensive if you’re not careful and selective, but try whenever you can to buy USDA approved organic foods. Sometimes our budgets demand that we pick and choose which foods we can buy organically, so it helps to refer to the Clean 15 and the Dirty Dozen.

 

Do you have any favorite fruits? we always have apples (granny smith and fugi) and bananas, but my son loves raspberries and watermelon and blueberries, so summer is always a happy eating time at our house! 

Fort Mason, San Francisco

Saturday started out as a great morning. . . I had been to the Britannia Arms (an English pub near my house) with my cousin and a couple friends Friday night, getting home around 1am. So I expected to be a bit tired come Sat morn but I woke up raring and ready to go! (a benefit to not drinking: no hangover!)

The plan was to volunteer at the Wipro San Francisco Marathon’s Expo from noon to 5pm. Since it’s a bit of a drive to SF, I wanted to have the family packed in the car by about 9:30, so that way I would have plenty of time to drive, get caught in traffic, get lost, find my way there, find parking, and walk up to the Expo. Have you ever tried to drive and park in San Francisco? Yeah, good luck with that. It’s like a traffic scene from The Fifth Element. Insane.

All the way up to SF, the boys were amazingly well-behaved. This was surprising to me. There were no tantrums, “are we there yet”s, and no barking at other cars. Not that my son would bark at other cars. . .

 

As we were driving, I noticed that it was getting a little hard to talk. My throat was sore and scratchy and the junction of my throat/mouth was stinging. Crap. Well, as usual, I made a comment about and then promptly ignored it. It took about 45 minutes for the rest of my body to start yelling at me. We were just outside South San Francisco when I admitted that all I wanted to do was crawl into bed and nurse my aching body. Awesome. Thank you, Universe, I love being sick on the weekends during the summer. Yay.

So instead of spreading my sickie germies to a bunch of marathoners, we decided to just take a walk and get some fresh air, since we were pretty much in San Francisco. We went to Fort Mason (I highly suggest going there if you’re in San Francisco!) and visited a Swiss Mountain Dog event. Just an informal barbecue with lots of Swiss doggies. Chewie was in heaven. Puppies and hot dogs?!?! SCORE!!! He was one of the only 2 Saint Bernards there, which are the biggest of the Swiss breeds, so he got lots of attention.

Since I wasn’t feeling up to socializing, (oh hell, I wasn’t up for even smiling. by this point, i felt like dog poop) we started out for a little walk around Fort Mason and down to the water’s edge.

Little history lesson: Fort Mason was built in 1864, and used as a defense for the San Francisco Bay during the Civil War. Yes, you read that right. The Civil-frickin-War. Needless to say, Fort Mason is old and has some great history to it. If you’re interested in learning more about it, click here.

So here are some of the pics from Fort Mason:

There’s a public garden on Fort Mason that was beautiful and it had an amazing view of the city. 

The garden and the garden’s view.

Since the Fort is a Historical Point, there were lots of signs around describing different aspects of what the Fort used to do/serve as. 

Leve it to my son to find the artillery.

Just hanging out with a cannon, Mom, nbd. 

The Golden Gate Bridge. And fog. Can’t go to San Francisco and not expect the fog. 

From 1909 and through WWII, soldiers were shipped out to war from Fort Mason, helping the US to become a global power. Wow, that just sounded like a book report or history homework, didn’t it? Sorry about that. 😉

See that group of people down there? Yeah, that’s a BEER FESTIVAL. That’s cruel, Universe, to make me sick and tease me with a Beer Fest. Just cruel.

For everyone outside of California, San Francisco was destroyed in 1906 by a major earthquake. The city made a huge recovery and hosted the World Fair in 1915. Does the World Fair even still exist? Add that to my “Google it” list. . . 

Anyone up for a swim to Alcatraz?

It wasn’t long before I was at my limit, so we headed back to the car. Whenever I’m sick I crave french fries, so after a trip to In-N-Out, we were back on the road, heading home. And apparently, I missed the memo that it was nap time.

When we got home, it was time to snuggle on the couch and watch the Olympics. This is my son’s first time really watching the summer olympics (he was too young to stay up late for the Beijing broadcasts) and he’s really into the swimming! Time to get him back into the pool! 😉 So I’ve been on the couch since Saturday night, recuperating from whatever I’ve got. While I’m not healthy yet, I am feeling better, so we’re going to brave the park today. My son can play for a bit and then hang out while I walk up and down the hill. My Nike+ Running app is going to yell at me for slacking in the speed department, but hey, you’ve always got to take care of your body and come back into exercising slowly.

How was your weekend? Do anything interesting? Racing? Traveling? 

Muscle Blast Ballet and Jazzercise

Last night (Wednesday) I taught my Muscle Blast class at 24 Hour Fitness. Typically, we do a combination of ballet, Pilates, and yoga, with an emphasis on Pilates. As a ramp-up-to-summer, though, I changed it to a slightly different format for 4 weeks. Last night was session numéro un.

While keeping with pliés and curtseys and Pilates arm strengthening, I added in barbells. Oh yeah, I’m that mean. 😉 Plus, what’s a better way to get summer-licious than by making it core and ab focused?

a wide plié stance. And while we typically use chairs, we did not for this class.

Class started with a warmup of pliés, romanian dead lifts, overhead reaches, trunk rotations, more pliés. After that, 5 whole stinking minutes of planks and side planks (with hips dips and toe touches.) Then the torture fun began! Here’s my set list from class last night after the warmup and planks (spending 3:30 per exercise):

  • Curtsey Lunges
  • Weighted Mermaids and Pliés
  • Barbell: Romanian dead lift
  • V-arm circles, forward and backward
  • Barbell: Plié with overhead press
  • Barbell: Bridge lift

Then the last 20 minutes of class was all ABS!

  • crunches
  • bicycle crunches
  • bicycle 7-count pulse crunches
  • hat take-off
  • heels to heaven (straight leg reverse crunch)
  • Passé leg lift
  • V-sit knee pulls
  • V-sit crunchie frogs

the Passé leg lift

Followed by a quick stretch.

Conclusion?

Yowza!!!

I’m sore from last night’s class in my quads, glutes, and obliques. . . And I saw everyone’s facial expressions, so I’m guessing they’re sore, too! 😉 I get paid to torture people for a living! Can life get any better?! 😉

So this morning I joined my aunt, Robin, at Jazzercise. Monday was my first ever Jazzercise class, so I was excited to try it again (today was a different instructor.) And just like everywhere else, different instructors can teach the same thing but it’s a whole different class. That’s one of the reasons why I LOVE LOVE LOVE group exercise! 🙂

The class on Monday and the class today was the traditional Jazzercise class: floor cardio (both high and low impact) that’s dance oriented for 30 minutes, light weights for 15 minutes, and a cool down and stretch. I must say, I worked harder today than I did on Monday, but I’m thinking that it was because today had more complex choreography (though still simple: think along the same lines as Zumba, but not as twirly). I liked the routines more, so I put more energy into it.

this isn’t the class we did, but I totally wish it was!! Yeah, baby!! Grrrr! 😉

this gives you a general idea of what the cardio section of the class is like, tho

(HINT: the best exercise is not what’s a fad at the moment, but what you truly enjoy and are willing to put effort into.)

If you’re interested in trying Jazzercise, click here to search for classes and deals in your area!

My advice: try every form of exercise. Don’t give up on finding something active that you love to do! There’s something out there for everyone!!! And even if you’ve already found your passion, try new things anyways! It’ll keep your muscles activated and make what you love more effective!

So now I’m home, contemplating how I want to fix my breakfast/protein smoothie and ignoring the fact that I need to vacuum. 😉

true story! 😉

What are your exercise plans for today?!

What’s your favorite protein smoothie recipe?!

‘Fatkini’ Trend

Oh, I sure hope this stays around!!!

We all come in different packages, and we need to love our bodies! True health comes from a combination of proper nutrition, physical activity, and great mental attitude.

Gabi Gregg, Blogger Who Started ‘Fatkini’ Photos, Talks Body Image On The ‘Today’ Show (VIDEO).

Run Run Run to Lululemon’s Run Club

Tuesday night I went to Lululemon (yeah, I told you I’d do it!) to check out their run club. Lululemon Santana Row was having a social hour/Q&A session. No running shoes required! Thank goodness, because I was freakin exhausted! And they had cookies!!!

 

As per usual with Lulu, I made sure I had time to shop. And as per usual, I went a bit overboard. Hey, don’t blame me! It’s so easy to do!! I mean, come on, this is the company that I want to work for. Do really expect me to control myself in their stores? Pfft. Yeah right.

My loot? Thought you’d never ask!

 

A running dress?!?! YES!!! And it’s way more flattering on a curvy figure, if I do say so myself. So lightweight and comfy!!! 

 

I don’t know how I never got the Run: Swiftly tank before now. Awesome. Seriously awesome. 

 

The cutest and most flattering board shorts you’ll ever own. Each color is reversible to a solid and a print. I got the black simply because my fave bikini is all black. Matchy matchy.

 

A handheld with pocket for my short/short-ish runs. 

And the piece that I’ve been wanting for a while now, the hydration belt! 3 bottles, iPhone carrier, reflective race bib holder. Yes. Heather’s running in style now!!

Before this shopping trip, I had no actual hydration system for my runs. Which is pretty important. So, really, it wasn’t all that hard to spend the bucks on both a hand-held and a belt Amphipod.

 

Anyway, back to the run club!

The Santana Row Lulu meets up on Wednesday nights for track work and Saturday mornings for long runs. Which has 2 drawbacks. (I refuse to say ‘problems’)

First, their schedule is set to coincide with the Lululemon SeaWheeze Half Marathon. So since my half is about a month before the SeaWheeze, the scheduling is a bit off for my training. And second, I teach on Wednesday nights. Greeaaaaaat. So I’ll only be able to do their long runs on Saturdays. I’m hoping that once the weather starts really heating up the time on Wednesday night gets pushed another hour back. Then, I could teach AND run with Lulu!! Yay!

This will be my first time running with a run club. . . I’m kinda scared for the people I’ll be running with. 😉 I’m really looking forward to it!

 

Do any of you run with run clubs? Formal or otherwise? Any suggestions on what to expect? How to behave? How to secretly pick a wedgie or your nose? 😉

Risks and Rewards

“Doing risk sport had taught me another important lesson: never exceed your limits. You push the envelope and you live for those moments when you’re right on the edge, but you don’t go over. You have to be true to yourself; you have to know your strengths and limitations and live within your means.”

Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia, Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman

Push yourself, go after those big goals and lofty dreams! But when you’re injured or not up to the physical challenge, don’t kill yourself. Reevaluate what you’re doing and modify your goals.

Here’s to a week of great workouts!!!

If you’re stumped on how to mix up your routine this week, try throwing this in! Your legs will hate love you!!! Keep your abs in tight and push your knees outward when you squat. Have fun!!

The Best Summer Salad

This is the best non-salad salad, and it’s perfect for summer! I say “non-salad” because there’s no lettuce. Seriously. None. But you can add lettuce if you want to, I’m not judging! 😉

This is the perfect salad for summer– refreshing, cold, and goes great with barbecue! Personally, I eat it all on it’s own, but I don’t turn down bbq, either. 😉

Ingredients (for either 1 personal salad, or 2 side salads):

1 Avocado

1 large or 2 medium tomatoes (but I’ve done a kick a$$ version of this with a handful of cherry tomatoes cut in halves!)

1/2 medium cucumber

Canola oil to taste (it has more Omega-3s than Olive Oil per serving!)

Salt and Pepper to taste

Optional: Pinch of freshly chopped Basil leaves. I do this when I’m feeling feisty. 🙂

Cut up avocado, tomatoes, and cucumber into bite-sized pieces. Place in bowl, drizzle with canola oil and salt/pepper. Mix gently but thoroughly. Careful, if you mix it too much, you’re going to have something that looks like baby barf. It’s the avocado. Be gentle! 😉

Enjoy!!!

What’s your workout today?! 🙂 How are you kicking off a healthy weekend?!

I started my morning by doing Megan‘s kickboxing class, and then moved to the pool, where I taught Aqua Aerobics and Toning. 🙂 It’s been fun subbing the aqua classes! (I will say, though, that I’m looking forward to not having the smell of chlorine in my nose all day.)

Wishing you a happy and healthy weekend!!!  ❤

bummer, dude.

Today was awesome! Not to gloat, buuuuuuut…

Woke up today and dropped off my son at school, then made my way to the gym to take Megan‘s kickboxing class.

check out your local 24 HF for a free pass and membership promos!

Got a great butt-whoopin’ and was riding an endorphin high!

With awesome hot summer weather and the crazy-good mood I was in, I went into a cleaning frenzy around the house (side note: you will probably never hear about me doing that again. this is kind of a one-time event.)

I even cleaned all of my make-up brushes. Wow, Heather, slow down! Gettin crazy with da cleaning! 😉

After getting the cleaning done, and some homework out of the way, I laid out in the sun and got some much-needed vitamin D. And a wittle bit of cowa on my legs 😉

I ended up making some yogurt popsicles for my son, and some berry ice cubes for my soda water.

Wow, Heather gettin all crazy again! this endorphin high was just going and going and going and going… I was loving it!!!

My son loved the popsicles and started eating the berry ice cubes like his life depended on it… I guess he was hot. 😉

I received an email yesterday from Volkswagen with a promo to join their team in the Bay to Breakers Race in San Francisco. Psyched? Uh, YEAH!!! So I went today to register… and the event was sold out. DANG IT!!! So, there was my one bummer of the day. 😦

So while I was getting really psyched about running in the Bay to Breakers, I’m not going to let it ruin my day! I’m bookmarking the event’s website so that I can run it next year!

And now I know when I see an email that I want to act on during Accounting class, I shall excuse myself from class to get it taken care of right then and there. Lesson learned. (like I’m ever going to receive another invite to run with VW, pffft!) Here’s hoping for another chance!!!!!

Have any of you run the Bay to Breakers? 

 

Maintenance

It’s baaAAAAaack!

Crap.

Week #2 of my half marathon training and my left foot is being a whiny little wimp. Luckily and thankfully, it’s just whining that it’s tired and doesn’t feel like running. So I’ve started the “maintenance” to keep it from really yelling at me that it hurts.

driving and icing–multitasking awesomeness!! thankfully i don’t drive a stick shift… and apparently I need some body lotion…

I’m taking comfort in the fact that it’s not “painful” yet… my foot’s just “talking” to me right now… AND working in the athletic training room = as much ice as my little heart foot desires!

So Tuesday was a typical rest day, yesterday I cancelled my run but I still taught Pilates, and today… well, I’m still trying to convince myself that taking off one more day is actually a good thing… it’s just so dang boring!!!

That’s the part of injures that no one tells you about: it’s freaking boring!!!!!! There’s a lot of time spent doing nothing. Yeah yeah, you have exercises and stretches to do, but I’d much rather go running or do kickboxing than sit my butt on a bicycle…

So I know I’ve already mentioned that it’s feeling a lot like summer out here, but I just thought I’d share some more pics of what my pretty little hippy town is lookin like 🙂

Tomorrow I’ll do some kickboxing, some running, some yoga… and ice my foot. A couple times. Maybe even take some Advil. 😉

Hopefully everyone is enjoying a beautiful week and running a lot!!!!

 

Blissed-out yoga body!!!

Is it just me, or does it feel like summer?

Today in yoga class, beautiful Ms. Megan asked us to “pay attention to how your body is feeling”, noting that some areas of our body may “feel blissed-out.” Blissed-out?! I am all for made up words! Awesome! I swear, I had the hardest time not chuckling in class!

But there’s a truth in “blissed-out!” One of the best feelings in the world is to have your legs shaking, your arms jelly, and then melting into the floor during savasana. So today, I’m giving you a yoga routine that will kick your bootay, tone your muscles, and de-stress your Manic Monday! The pictures and descriptions are from Slim Calm Sexy Yoga by Tara Stiles, but I have put together the sequence myself

You will need a mat and water, a wall, and if you’re feeling it, some music. at the end of the workout, i’ve listed some songs that i love to play during my yoga practice

Sequence:

Start on your hands and knees, back in a neutral position, neck nice and long. Hold each position for 3 deep breaths, unless otherwise noted.

Come into Plank

Half push up

Side plank, right

Half push up

Side plank, left

Come in to Downward Facing dog

Down dog split, right

Down dog side split, right

Down dog split, left

Down dog side split, left

Slowly come up into Warrior 3 hands on shins, right

slowly drop left leg down into Peaceful warrior

Stand and come into Warrior 3 hands on shins, left

slowly drop right leg down into Peaceful warrior

bring left leg back and come into Plank

Downward facing dog

Knee to forehead, right

knee to forehead, left

knee cross lift, right

knee cross lift, left

gently roll on to onto your back, Legs up wall

scoot away from wall, Hip release, right

Hip release, left

Corpse (10 deep breaths, don’t rush it!)

So now for some muuuuuuuusic! Here are some songs that I like to listen to while practicing yoga. Remember when I said that I want to teach a Pilates class to movie scores? (if not, click here) Well, the music that I use during yoga is from movie scores. You’re welcome. 😉


So now that your body is Blissed-Out, go out into the world and be your awesome self! ❤