>Why I do what I do…

>I never set out to be a motivational speaker or a cheerleader for health and exercise. It just kinda happened one day. You know how when you are happy, you want everybody to be happy…or when you find the perfect man/woman, you want all your friends to have the same thing…well I guess that is how I developed my passion for health.

Being healthy is an absolutely conscious decision. Many people want to talk about all the reasons why their health is where it is. I want to challenge you to figure out why you want to be/stay healthy.

Excuses for ill-health:

  1. I don’t have enough time.
  2. Healthy food is too expensive.
  3. My kids drain my energy…keep me up too late…have too many activities.
  4. All of my family is big.
  5. I have bad knees/thyroid problems/”the pressha.”

Reasons to be healthy:

  1. I want more time with my family.
  2. Buying medications and bigger clothes all the time is too expensive.
  3. I want more energy to play and keep up with my kids as they grow.
  4. I want to help my family change.
  5. If I lose this weight maybe my knee pain/thyroid problem/”pressha” would subside.

Make your decision. Either you are gonna make excuses or find reasons. Regardless, it is your choice. No amount of talking from me, your doctor, your kids will ever help until you make the decision to act. And it is such a shame that it will probably take some life threatening incident to make most folks change their habits…but maybe, just maybe, someone will read this and prevent those issues.

LaQuesha

>Why are you here?

>There is this big dude at my gym. He is just a large mammal. His name is Brian and he is one of the trainers. He and a couple of other trainers at the gym do a bootcamp with a group of people. For the people who have made the conscious decision to actually workout with these people are knowingly submitting to some form of torture. But these trainers actually help get people to their goals…and they are hilarious, at least to me because I am just an onlooker. But I definitely take pointers from them.

When I first started working out there, I was in utter amazement because this group is LOUD. You can always hear grunts, screams, and folks barking orders…and people pay for this! But a few sayings that Brian has definitely stays with me. He says, “This is the weight room. This ain’t the break room.” And if folks are just standing around talking he says, “Get her phone number or email address.” And these two statements are the basis for my commentary. Why are you coming to the gym if the only thing you are doing is socializing or standing around? You can burn the exact same amount of calories snuggled up at home in your bed. If you gonna make the conscious decision to wake up, get dressed, eat a good breakfast, and hit the gym…MAKE IT COUNT! Just going to the gym does not mean anything, you actually have to do the work.

It amazes when I see people just leisurely strolling strolling on the treadmill. Ain’t nearly broke a sweat, and probably won’t in the 30 minutes they are on it. Not even a drop of sweat on their brow. Why even come? Why waste the gas?

What is even sillier are the people that work out with the trainers and whine and complain the whole time. Clearly you needed the help, otherwise you wouldn’t be paying this person almost $50 a session, so why would you fight them the whole session? I see people negotiating with their trainers: “Can I just do 7 reps, instead of 10 right now?” or “This is too harrrrdddd! (In a terribly whiney voice.)” or “How much longer?” Sorry ladies, but women are notorious for these behaviors. I see women crying and stuff and I just wanna yell, “MAN THE EFF UP!” But women are way to sensitive and wanna have a hug fest at the gym and talk about feelings. I just want them to try. Men will at least try to do the workout without so much complaining.

The folks that come into the gym and just half-ass it, actually do more harm to themselves than good…in my opinion. These people are actually thinking that since they are “working out” AKA showing up to the gym, they can eat that extra slice of cake or that whole Chipotle burrito. They justify eating more or bad things because they did their sad leisurely stroll, that they considered a workout. I can speak for myself on this one because I have gained weight even while consistently working out. The thing is, food should be fuel. And if you are not actually using that fuel, maybe you should not keep filling up your tank…that why the tank is overflowing into all available compartments of the car. So if you gonna be there, make it count and break a sweat.

LaQuesha

>My 700 Calorie Burn Day…

>Now that I have my Bodybugg, I can track which workouts are most effective. I have found that running completely blasts calories to oblivion. Yesterday my workout partner, (Jaiz the boyfriend) and I did a cardio day of running. In 40 minutes I burned 450 calories. Clearly I wasn’t being all cutesy and walking, while holding on to the handles. We were actually jogging for a while, then running, then all out sprinting for a little while…so this workout was quick and intense. When I figured out how many calories I could burn by running, I decided that that would be my cardio from here on out.

My daily workouts usually consist of weight training, 30 minutes of cardio, abs, and stretching. I am able to get all of this in in just about 2 hours. When I say that we are very structured with our workouts, I mean VERY structured.

Mondays are chest day.
Tuesdays are back day.
Wednesdays are shoulders and calf day.
Thursdays are biceps and triceps.
Fridays are leg day.

So you see, we have a plan. There is never any just walking into the gym all willy nilly and trying to figure it out on the fly.

Anyways…onto today’s workout. I killed it today for real. (Giving myself a pat on the back.) Last week we changed the workout up just a little. We are now doing 21 sets of 5 reps on different weight training exercises…and yes, I just said 21 sets. I am not sure if we are crazy or not, but so far I am still alive and kicking 🙂 I did 3 different workouts today of 21 sets. Now I am not using really heavy weight. I am using weights that are heavy enough that by the half way point I am getting fatigued, but can make it through. If I am not tired halfway through, then my weight must not have been heavy enough. The important thing is to know your body and actually try and push yourself. Until you are truly pushing yourself, you will never know what you are capable of.

I also managed to get in 2.75 miles today on the treadmill in 31 minutes. I am aiming for 3 miles a day, but time kinda got away from me today…We will see if I hit my goal later on this week. Stay tuned…

LaQuesha

Must Haves…

A few must haves of mine:

  1. Goals- I want to be get to 150 lbs and a true size 10 in jeans. (I can size 10 dress pants now.)
  2. Journal- I record my workouts everyday. I also record my weight and measurements periodically. If you really want to to be accurate, you may also want to record your food intake.
  3. Diet- This is very, very important. Please remember that food is your fuel. You have to eat. I eat when I am hungry, I do not starve myself EVER. Actually I eat at least 4 meals a day. I do not eat fried foods, fast food, pork, or red meat. I do eat a lot of proteins, fruits and veggies, and good carbs. Figure out what your body really needs to function properly and efficiently.
  4. A plan- I have my gym bag packed with my workout gloves, journal and pen, earphones and music, and whatever else is necessary. I am also consistent with when I eat, sleep, and time that I workout. (I am not a robot, but your body does get trained to do what you want.)
  5. Proper Gym Attire- The gym is to sweat, not for a fashion show..y’all know what I mean. (I’m sure that you have seen those matchy-matchy women.) Anyways, make sure that you have proper shoes, sports bras (as applicable), and clothes.

Bonuses:

  1. Workout partner- I have a workout partner, (my boyfriend.) While our workouts are somewhat different, the important thing is we keep each other motivated and hold ourselves accountable.
  2. Bodybugg- I have a Bodybugg from 24 Hour Fitness, which can be bought from their website, that counts the amount of calories that I burn. This Bodybugg also comes with an online program where you can monitor your calorie intake. Basically I am able to watch what I eat vs. what I am burning. This is awesome because I am able to make adjustments as necessary. While the Bodybugg and the online program may be kind of expensive, a sports watch that monitors your heart rate may do similar things. (A few ladies at the gym wear those sports watches. I have not personally tried them out.)

Make a plan, have some realistic and attainable goals, and actually hold yourself accountable. This is your life and your only body…take care of it. We are about to enter this journey together guys. What are your goals??

LaQuesha

My Journey

I did not just wake up one day and decide that I was going to be a health freak. I also did not have health fanatics for role models that taught me what I now know from an early age. Everything that I know now came through trial and error, research, and asking questions. It is not reasonable for someone reading my journey to up and think that they can accomplish what I have overnight. It would probably drive you crazy. But small steps, if you are serious, will get you to your destination.

I have been a regular in the gym since my college years, so it was never a big deal for me to get in the gym. Where I actually needed the help was having a goal and changing up my eating habits. My boyfriend told me that not having a goal was like sailing with no compass or map. That really stuck with me and now I set goals and actually track my progress.

(For full disclosure, I am gonna do what many women would NEVER do. I am going to share my weight progress. Maybe showing exactly what I do and my exact results will help someone else.)

As of December 1, 2008, I weighed 172 lbs and I am 5’1. And I just weighed myself this morning and I weighed 157…I am honestly very excited because I had been hovering around 160 lbs for months now and I finally busted through that. (I don’t want to get too excited though, I could very well be tricking myself since I haven’t eaten today…but we will see.) Each week I will weigh in and post my results on Wednesday. Tracking your results is of ultimate importance when trying to hit a goal. It has been very helpful for me.

Anyways, feel free to follow my journey…post your thoughts, feelings, or questions…or just take a few tidbits here and there.

LaQuesha