Smoothie Move | Fitness Friday

joythebaker

Before I started working out, getting a smoothie was a great way to relieve myself of calorie guilt after a particularly shitty day/week of eating.

Green smoothie? I’ll take it. Jesus, I’m a health food nut!”

Now? Smoothies are a quick and easy way for me to get all my nutrients that help me reap the benefits of the lifting I’ve been doing in the gym, as well as the vitamins that keep me healthy. I’m about 90% convinced that the reason I haven’t gotten a cold this winter is because of how many greens I’ve been consuming (and there’s hardly been a salad in sight).

Smoothies that I drink after working out are high in protein and full of fruits, vegetables and fiber. I’m still learning about the textures and flavors I like and have yet to dive into smoothie-aficionado additions, like wheatgrass and aminos (or something), but I’m pretty excited about the discoveries I’ve made so far. Check it:

smoothie

Spinach + Kiwi + Chia seed smoothie (from Joy the Baker)

makes 1 large or 2 small smoothies

For the Smoothie:

  • 1 1/2 cups almond milk, cold
  • 1 1/2 cups packed baby spinach leaves
  • 1 banana, cut into chunks and frozen
  • 1 ripe kiwi, peeled, cut into chunks

Awesome Extras:

  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 2 tablespoons wheat grass powder
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon maca powder

In a blender, combine almond milk, spinach leaves, frozen banana chunks, and kiwi chunks.  Add some of the awesome extras if you’re so inclined.  Blend until smooth.  Enjoy immediately.


Almond Butter + Banana Smoothie (+Protein)

makes 1 large or 2 small smoothies

  • 1 1/2 cups coconut+almond milk, cold
  • 1 1/2 cups packed spinach and kale leaves
  • 1 banana, cut into chunks
  • 1 scoop chocolate whey powder
  • 2 table spoons almond butter
  • Cinnamon to taste, I usually do about a teaspoon (+ great for metabolism)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon flax meal/seeds
  • 4 ice cubs (this is personal preference…room temp smoothies don’t cut it for me)

Combine all ingredients in blender and let ‘er rip! This smoothie is super high in protein and healthy fats so I find its a really hearty/healthy way to follow up intense workouts.


ABJ Smoothie (+Protein)

makes 1 large or 2 small smoothies

  • 1 1/2 cups coconut+almond milk, cold
  • 1 1/2 cups packed spinach and kale leaves
  • 1 cup frozen mixed berries
  • 1 scoop vanilla whey powder
  • 2 table spoons almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon flax meal/seeds

Again, put everything in the blender and goooooooo. This smoothie is a spin on PBJ sandwiches (obvs). I was feeling really clever when I got this tart treat all worked out.

Death by Ab Day | Fitness Friday

abdat

Today was a day defined by self-loathing, pain and hatred. It was a day when I thought “it really can’t get worse than this.” A day when I truly wondered if the hurt I was feeling was worth it or if I had made a grave mistake. Today…was ab day.

Ab day some of you may be thinking. What’s so terrible about a few rousing rounds of crunches? 

Let me set the scene:

Prior to a couple of months ago, the core workouts that I was frequently taking part in were the ones that I like to categorize into a group titled “everyday abdominals.” One ultra-popular move from this workout regimen was sit-ups–you know, where I’d be snacking on my couch and when I wanted another Dorito I’d use all my will power (and no hands) to sit up in order to get my arm into the depths of the not-so-distant chip bag. I’ve never felt accomplishment so sincere as I did in moments when I’d be retrieving the remnants of flavor dust from the corners of my newly oranged mouth.

Another move? The “I’m too lazy to get off the couch to reach the remote, so I’ll just stretch and contort my body until I can reach it” maneuver. You’ve heard of it? This yoga-like stretch really takes dedication, as the amount of effort it takes to test your limits in order to grab that clicker is most-likely more difficult than swinging your legs off of the couch and retrieving it the old fashioned way. Bonus fitness points if it’s under opposite side of the coffee table. Keep that core tight.

With all that being said, I’m sure you’ve gathered that my six pack was well underway.

Core days with Andrew are a little bit different than core days with me and my low tolerance for pain. This morning we did bicycle crunches, planks, downward dog hybrid crunches (i.e. Satan’s work), and this violent leg lift that essentially feels as if you’re air-skipping into your final moments. I left feeling 10% nauseous and 90% like I didn’t know if I could ever do it again…but I will.

So, maybe it does feel a little bit like you’re being branded with the hot stamp of a six-pack on your midsection; maybe the next day it feels like you’ve been repeatedly punched in the stomach and now laughing feels like a torture device; But maybe just maybe your results are closer than you think. Do those side planks and push through those godforsaken flutter kicks. If you keep at it, it’s gonna pay off in the end.*

*aaaaaaand If it doesn’t then I hear youtube has some pretty sick DIYs on faking abs with bronzer. You’re welcome.

I’m two weeks deep in personal training and there’s no looking back. Muscles I never knew I had are starting to gain tone and, dare I say, I feel stronger than I ever have (both physically and mentally).

So excited to keep you posted on how this is going.

Speak to you soon!

x

2015 | Fit Friday

fitfriday2

Monday morning–4:45A.M.  The twinkle-toned iPhone alarm I had chosen to “calmly wake myself up” seemed unbearably shrill, especially when I remembered why it was going off: my first 5:30A.M. appointment with my personal trainer. After trying to feign a hamstring injury brought on by an impending Charlie horse… I reluctantly rolled off of my half deflated air mattress and into my fleece lined running tights.

But, wow…am I glad I did.

Several weeks ago I decided that just going to the gym a few times a week really wasn’t getting me the results I was hoping for. (I wanted to see “Beyonce” but instead I was getting “Young mom who’s stopped drinking diet coke.”) After talking with several of my friends, who I consider to be professional gym rats, it was clear that a personal training program would be my best bet.

I was nervous. “Personal trainer?” I thought, “He’ll kill me. I’ll die. I’ll lay right out on the weight floor after leg day and take my last living breath.” Within the next few days I grew some balls and then nervously approached my soon-to-be torturer/trainer at the front desk. After about 20 minutes of discussion and signing papers it was official: for 3 times a week for the next three months I’d be seeing Andrew for lifting days and going an additional 2 more visits for cardio sessions. I walked out of the gym and promptly grabbed a snack to ease my stresses.

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Fast forward to now–8A.M. on Friday, January 2, 2015. Sitting at my kitchen table recovering from this morning’s shoulder + core + cardio session, sipping on an almond butter + berry protein shake concoction (that I call The PBJ) and feeling 100% sure that I have made one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

After 1 week of personal training I feel awesome; I’m sleeping better, I feel stronger (even if just a little), I’m driven to eat well, I’m drinking so much water, I’m happier, My brain is clearer and I have so many more opportunities to brag to my co-workers about how much I lifted at my early morning PT sesh. Andrew has really encouraged me to not just seek fitness, but also nutrition (full wellness). I’ve been dipping my fork into the key Paleo diet principles but with a few tweaks of my own.

With the arrival of a new year, I’ve also adapted a new mindset: investing in myself is just as important as investing in other things.

My fitness goals (not resolutions because those are for the weak) for 2015:

  • Know what it means to actually feel healthy and reap the benefits of that lifestyle.
  • Learn from my trainer how/why/what I need to do to work my muscles correctly and continue to do that even after training is over.
  • Feel strong, capable and empowered.
  • Become professional at feigning minor injuries so my break between ab sets can be longer.
  • Blog about fitness/lifestyle changes so other people can learn something/feel my pain.
  • Really try to contain biscuits to once a week (do the vegan ones count? Leaning towards no RN).
  • Oh right…and those Beyonce/Nicki/Azalea booty curves.*

*Andrew asked me what my fitness goals were and maybe that was my answer, but who really knows?

Speak to you guys soon! Happy new year!

x

Twerkout

Lululemon Future Varsity Bra Nike Muscle Tank Nike Muscle Tank (back) Calvin Klein tapered sweatpants Nike Windrunner Zipup VS Knockout tights Lululemon Yoga BagNike Dual Fusion - Crosstrain

Excuses are for chumps–and I am one so here goes: I haven’t posted in a hot minute because things got crazy. And when I say crazy, I really just mean that I had a lot of hugs to give and food to eat upon my return home to Nashville. The remainder of the trip was exquisite (afternoons in Amsterdam and exploring New York), but I was beyond ready to board my plane home. Something about having my own room again, and friends sending me sappy, all caps text messages.

Upon my return and reuniting with friends and familiar bars, I’ve  also put my game face on and have made an astoundingly strong return to my gym routine. My muscles are starting to get their strength back and my motivation for a healthy lifestyle doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.

As you’ve scrolled down this far, that means you’ve feasted your eyes upon my workout wishlist. It’s not an exaggeration when I say I have one pair of acceptable gym pants and a hand-me-down pair of tennis shoes that are about ready to run off of my feet. Fingers are crossed I’ll be able to invest in some new workout duds ASAP. Until then, my shopping carts on Nike and Lululemon are just going to continue expanding and then remain untouched until payday.

I hope I can be a little bit of a motivator for you guys to keep up with your fitness resolutions and newfound relationships with the gym (even if it’s just for the ripped dudes on the weight floor–I don’t hate it). Todays motivation doesn’t come in a quote or a picture of my (sort of not even a little) toned abs, but instead in a little playlist I like to call: TWERKOUT.

spotify:user:125034602:playlist:2Ms4tV2WijLSq6x6uAkzl2

Add these puppies to a Spotify playlist, or one you made in iTunes because you are my hero and already have all of these songs at your disposal, and crank the jams as you make your way around the weight floor.

You’re welcome.

x