Thursday, May 30, 2013

A Good Ass Workout

You know when you realize that you have had a good ass workout...

It is when you begin today's workout, and you can feel every single muscle trying to push through the first minute of starting that the DAY BEFORE workout was awesome!

Yesterday workout:
(25) min bicycle - I biked 5.75 miles
(3/25) sets/reps of squats w/ 20 lb free weights
(3/16) sets/reps of walking lunges w/ 15 lb free weights
(3/15) sets/reps on each leg of step ups w/ 15 lb free weights
(10) min stair climber - I climbed 50 floors
(15) min stretching

Whew..... My legs and shoulders were screaming today, but I had to push through. This is what I did today:

(30) min treadmill - As I started on the treadmill, the first minute was the hardest. My legs were screaming at me. It hurt, but it felt so good all at the same time. I know. I'm weird. I'm My average pace was 8:29. I ran 8 minutes of the 30 at HMP. I went from 6 to 8. Not bad in a week. I so wanted to go for 9 minutes, but the person next to me. Oh my....He smelled so bad. Like it's great that you want to shower before a workout. I know I smell kind of awful afterwards, so I can appreciate someone wanting to be clean, but he went a little overboard. He smelled like a cologne factory. Ugh. I could barely breathe. I have never wished for someone to finish on the treadmill as much as I was wishing he would. Luckily he only stayed on for 10 min, but it definitely through my groove and goals off.
(3/10) sets/reps sitting arnolds w/ 15 lb free weights
(3/12) sets/reps lateral raises w/ 10 lb free weights
(3/20) sets/reps push-ups
(3/30) sets/reps bicycles
(3/10) sets/reps side plank raises (each side)
And then I did 3 sets of 10 on 3 different leg specific machines.
(10) min of stretching

I am tired! But my body feels great. And hopefully this great feeling will keep me going through the weekend because I will not be able to work out, but that's okay. I'm going to be walking around all day doing stuff with my daughter, so I will be able to get some exercise in each day. Also, my body needs a break. Always remember to take a break sometimes.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

7 Day Challenge - Abs (Day 7)

So I totally finished the Day 7 a couple of days ago, but I am just getting a chance to write about it:

Side Plank – 20 (10 each side)
Rest – 10 seconds
Side Burpees – 10 reps (5 each side)
Rest – 30 seconds
Plank – Hold 1 minute
No rest
Mason Twist – 50 reps (25 each side)

I was being ambitious with this day. I think it was because it was the last day, but I went through this 3 times. Planks for a minute --- whew....This was my first time doing Side burpees. If I didn't hate regular burpees, well, side ones have definitely topped that! I loved the challenge, but more importantly, this regime got me working out again. I had lost that somewhere, but I am back on the wagon and loving it.

For results from this challenge. Yeah, I probably should have been better about that. People want to know if they put themselves through this pain and suffering, will I get results. Well, I'm really not sure. For me, I was doing a couple of things like running and following a Special K diet, so I cannot truly say that this Ab challenge will make you lose "x" amount of pounds and inches. What I can report on is with the additional things going on PLUS this ab challenge, this is what I lost:

Weight - 1.5 lbs loss
Waist - 0.25 inches loss

This is definitely not a science, but I will say what this challenge did help:

1. Feeling motivated and getting back on track
2. Having a new ab routine
3. Setting a goal and accomplishing that goal

With those 3 things, the weight and inches are really the icing on the cake!

I think I found a new challenge. I received an email from Fitness Magazine containing this article:

Wow Abs Now: The Two-Week Ab Makeover Workout

I flipped through the slides, and wow. It looks like a challenge. But I'm totally down for challenges, and it's definitely swimsuit season, so why not?? Watch out for my posts for this 2 week ab makeover, and let's see if I have the balls to post my ab photos online. 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

7 Day Challenge - Abs (Day 6)

Day 6 is the same as Day 2. Just as challenging.

The difference about this day was that Mommy A was doing it with me! She was awesome. I didn't do any other type of exercise since having a kid, you can't go to the gym together -- you have to take turns. So I stayed at home while Mommy A worked out. We will have to try out some system or days where she can work out and then I can work out.

No food to comment today because we went out for sushi. I heart sushi! It was great because usually at this new place, we order their 3 item bento box and an extra roll. So with our meal we are getting the following:

Miso Soup
(1) 8 pc California Roll
(1) Mixed Tempura
(1) Teriyaki Chicken
Extra 8 pc roll.

If we didn't have our daughter with us, we probably would not get the chicken, but they come in little strips and they are great for her little hands and for her to chew.

Well this time, we decided to NOT get the extra 8 pc roll. The other times we have been there, we have stuffed our face and felt pretty awful leaving. This time was different. We ate our food, and we were totally satisfied. Even with those items, we were feeling pretty stuffed. It saves money and keeps the calories down. Now only if we didn't like mixed tempura so much...haha.

I'm excited to wrap this challenge up tomorrow. I can't wait to do a final review of this challenge.

Friday, May 24, 2013

7 Day Challenge - Abs (Day 5)

It was a pretty good day (5) back:

Flutter Kicks – 30 reps (15 each side)
Side V-ups – 20 reps (10 each side)
Push Through – 30 reps
Complete 3 times

Time: 8 min

It was a good coming back. It was weird because I usually take Fridays off from working out, but other than that, I thought I had a great workout. Before the abs, I ran outside. I was itching to get outside. I didn't care how cold it was. So I ran faster to get my body warm and also ran faster to try to avoid the rain. It never came (it's Southern California for crying out loud), but it felt good tackling 3 hills and running it a little bit faster. 

No additional food post. Just did leftovers. Saving money...

I only have 2 more days of the challenge! I'm excited to finish his one up!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Special K Challenge - Day 1

I know, right?!?!

Who does this anymore. I remember as a kid seeing all of the Special K commercials and all the special food and drinks that you had to buy. I never knew anyone that actually did the challenge, but now I am that person leading the way.

The main parts of the Special K Challenge is that for the next 2 weeks, this is what you are supposed to do:

Meal No.1 - Special K cereal w/ skim milk and favorite fruit
Meal No.2 - Special K Protein Shake. Also this meal could be the Special K Protein Meal Bar or another serving of Special K cereal
Snacks - Choose 2 Special K snacks to enjoy throughout the entire day. Those could be the following: Protein snack bars, cereal bars, cracker chips, pastry crisps and crackers. Consume fruit and vegetables for additional snacks. Drink beverages as you normally do.
Meal No.3 - Eat 3rd meal as you normally do. If you check out their website,, you can check out recipes.

Mommy A saw the challenge on the back of the cracker chips, and she said, "I want to do it." Me not wanting her to do it alone, I said, "I'll do it with you." So I went out to the store and bought Southwest Ranch cracker chips, 2 different kinds of their pastry crisps: Chocolate & Caramel and Cookies & Cream, and 2 of their shakes: Strawberry Banana and French Vanilla.

Cookies & Cream Pastry Crisp:
There are 2 crisps per packet for 100 calories. It was really good and filling. I wanted another packet, but I knew that I had to wait until another day.

Sweet & Salty Pop Corn Chips:
Well, I couldn't tell if it was sweet. The batch of ones I just ate might have been stale, but it was good to have 28 of them for 110 calories. That's nice. Especially for someone that needs that chewing and biting and knowing that I am eating something.

French Vanilla Shake:
My thing with any type of protein shake is that you're not eating anything. I avoided them this whole year with my weight loss because for me, I like eating. I like making it and eating it. With protein shakes, you have to hope that you stay full because if not, then the shake almost becomes pointless. Any way, I had to run and be somewhere this morning, but my plan was to put the shakes in the fridge, so they would be cold by the time I got back home. I forgot. My backup plan was just to pour it over ice. I smelled it warm, and I almost threw up. It smelled so gross. But I knew I was in it to win it, so I reluctantly poured it over the ice, let it sit for a minute, so it would be get cold, and then drank it. Pleasantly surprised! It tasted exactly like a Vanilla shake. I had it 3 hours ago, and I'm still feeling full. I kind of forced myself to have the afternoon snack because I didn't want to be so low in my calories, so I'm excited to try the Strawberry Banana tomorrow. Don't worry -- all the shakes are in the fridge now.

I doubt I will drop a jean size, but I know that this will help my body learn again the proper amount for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. This program is really just to add more fiber and protein to the diet. In this way, it really makes you listen to your body of how full you are and when you should stop eating. Like I said, I forced myself to eat the Corn Chips, but it was more out of necessity to keep my metabolism high and not be super hungry later for dinner and dessert.

I'm not sure if we are going to do the Challenge for the full 2 weeks. We are definitely going to do at least a week. We are going to go on a mini vacation next week, so I'm not sure how that would work (especially since our room does not have a fridge), but taking the snacks and making sure we are eating fruits and vegetables and drinking lots of water are all good things. In addition, while we are out and about, we will share meals and take doggy bags and the same healthy lifestyle type of stuff!

7 Day Challenge - Abs (Day 4)

I love Day 4!


But I did get up and have the intention to go running, but the bed looked so nice, and my body was tired, so I went back to bed. I can feel it in my abs though. It hurts to laugh or sneeze or cough. I don't know if it's actually doing anything physically, but mentally, I am definitely feeling better about myself and even if the pounds aren't coming off the scale, having self-confidence is even a bigger success!

Also I'm proud that I am half way through this task. It looks like I have a tough 3 days ahead of me, but I'm excited! I can't wait to get started on it.

Oh, last night, I made a chicken stir fry. Nothing too exciting or adventurous. It was easy and quick. I just used a packet of stir fry veggies and diced up some chicken. Made a side of noodles and tossed all those things in low sodium soy sauce and oyster sauce. It was very delicious and kept me full for most of the night.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

7 Day Challenge - Abs (Day 3)

So Day 3 was whew... Haha

Routine #1
Mountain Climbers – 20 seconds
Rest – 10 seconds
Scissors – 20 seconds
Rest – 10 seconds
Knees In and Out – 20 seconds
Rest – 10 seconds
V-Ups – 20 seconds
Rest – 1 minute
Routine #2Toe Touch – 20 seconds
Rest – 10 seconds
Air Bike – 20 seconds
Rest – 10 seconds
4 Time Abs – 20 seconds
Rest – 10 seconds
Prone Plank – 20 seconds
Rest – 10 seconds
Do each routine 2 times
Time: 10 min
I was exhausted by the end of this round. This was coupled with before this routine, I had ran 30 minutes on the treadmill doing the same speed routine that I did yesterday (which btw I felt better at doing). My legs were spent and all of these exercises require your legs to work out your abs. Haha. I made it through though. 
There won't be any additional posts about food from last night because we went out. Mommy A is a secret diner for restaurants and we rate them mainly on their service -- how fast do they greet and how fast does the food come out. After the meal is done, you fill out paperwork rating the service and food, send it to the rep with the receipt, and they will send you a check in the mail reimbursing you the meal. Free meal essentially. We have been doing this for the past 2 years, and we haven't ran into any issues. 
It was a learning sign last night. My pasta meal was bad. It was the special too: Pesto sauce with Pine nuts sauteed in your choice of pasta. I order the Pesto w/ fettuccine and for an additional $2, I get the grilled chicken. Totally excited about this dish. Pasta is over cooked and tough, and the chicken is dry, even sitting in the pesto. I took a couple of bites, and then tried Mommy A's meal since she, too, had fettuccine, and I just wanted to make sure I wasn't crazy. Nope. Not crazy. Her pasta was cooked to perfection, and my pasta was a total fail. I sat it at the end of the table and didn't take another bite. 
This was a HUGE kudos to me. In the past, I would have sucked it up and ate it because I would have been hungry. We bought an appetizer (which was stupid good), and our meal came with salads. Before the pasta was even there, I was already saying I was way too full. My old self would have ate that bad pasta because I would be hungry and wouldn't have said anything. The transformed me knew that if I was going to eat badly, the food needed to be good. Also, I was feeling really full, and I did not want to force myself to eat it. The manager was kind of enough to come over and ask if there was something that I wanted the kitchen to make, but I declined. It was very sweet, but I did not need ton and ton of pasta to come home to me. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Stuffed Vegetable Portobello Mushrooms w/ Maryland-Style Potatoes

For Meatless Monday yesterday, it was a serious "what veggies do I have in the fridge?" kind of meal. There are a lot of additional mix-ins you can do like tomatoes, red peppers and black beans.  This is what I came up with:

3 - Portobello mushroom caps
1/4 - zucchini, diced
1/4 - squash, diced
1/2 cup - broccoli, diced
2 tbls - onion, diced
5 - black olives
1 tsp - Dried basil
1 tsp - Paprika
1 oz - gruyere cheese
1/4 cup - Panko crumbs
2 tsp - olive oil

Preheat oven to 425. Cleaned out caps by removing caps and cleaning on black with a spoon. Place caps on a cookie sheet. Drizzle 1 tsp of olive oil on caps. Place in oven for 5 min. After 5 min, remove from oven, but keep the oven on. 

Warm up a pan. Placed all vegetables being used in a bowl. Drizzle remaining olive oil. Add basil and paprika. Mix ingredients. Add to hot pan and heat through for 5 min or until vegetables are soft. 

Remove vegetables from heat and put into same bowl used. Add cheese. Mix cheese in mixture. Scoop veggie mixture into caps. Evenly distribute panko crumbs on top of each cap. Place in oven for 5 min.  

Serve warm. 
Servings: 3
Calories: 104 per serving

For the potatoes, there wasn't really anything special. I used 2 potatoes. Cut them into chunks and stove cooked them. I added a tsp of olive oil and a whole lot of OLD BAY seasoning. That's what makes them Maryland style. I should post the Cauliflower soup I made. That was good. Maybe I should make that for dinner sometime this week. 

Sorry, I digressed. The whole meal came out to: 

7 Day Challenge - Abs (Day 2)

Day 2 is always the hardest, right?

Oh was a challenge. Here is what I did:

Foot to Foot Crunch – 30 reps
Alternating Curls – 30 reps
Recovery – 30 seconds
Push Through – 30 reps
4 Time Abs – 30 reps
Recovery – 30 seconds
Arm Reaching Crunch – 30 reps
Leg Up Touch Crunch – 30 reps
Recovery – 30 seconds
Cross On Crunch – 30 reps
Double Crunch – 30 reps

Time: 10 min

The rest/recovery was nice for the 2nd and last set, but the for the other two, it did not seem like I needed it, but I know that my abs did. I really suck at abs, so the fact that I'm even doing this is pretty awesome of me.

Here was the rest of my workout:
25 min on treadmill
5 min of stretching

I got a late start this morning. I set the alarm for 5:15am and finally got out of bed at 6:15. My first thought was, "I'm late. I can't go," but I knew I needed to go and that I wouldn't have anytime later today to do this. I really wanted to do 50 min on the treadmill, run through the ab routine twice and 10 min of stretching, but oh well. I was proud that I went to the gym and did it =)

For the treadmill...ugh. I have a love/hate relationship with it. Hate because I get bored with it really quickly, but love since I can train to keep at a particular pace and learn to focus on the music when I am getting tired. Usually when I am on the treadmill, I do interval work to help me keep focus and not get bored with what I am doing. Today, I was working as I was training for a sub 1:30 half marathon. Haha...I would never get to that type of time since that requires a 6:52/mi pace for 13.1 miles, but it doesn't hurt to try, right? So, on the treadmill, I ran my first mile at 8:30/mi, and then after the first mile, I ran 0.5 at half marathon pace (HMP). I was really surprised that I ran a half mile at that pace. I was only anticipating 0.25, so I surprised myself. Then I turned it back down to 8:30/mi until mile 2 and repeated. I only ran to 3 miles due to time, but I thought it was a great start. Maybe doing this speed work will help me get to a faster pace which would be awesome.

Anyway, can't wait to keep this ab party going with tomorrow's workout!

Monday, May 20, 2013

My Half Marathon Race Results

I just wanted to take the time to post my race results before they disappear forever :)

Long Beach - Oct 2012
Half Marathon
Runner DetailsRace Results
Name:Monique Boone
Hometown:Long Beach, CA
Overall:6789 out of 11267
Women:3335 out of 6589
F 25-29:587 out of 1005
Age/Grade:41.69% Place: 7090
Finish:2:37:56 Pace: 12:03
Tag Time:2:37:56
Gun Time:3:08:39
Split Times
5 Km:33:10 Pace: 10:41
10 Km:1:07:48 Pace: 10:55
10 Mile:1:54:37 Pace: 11:28
10.9 Mile:Pace:

Huntington Beach - Feb 2013
Half Marathon
Runner DetailsRace Results
Name:Monique Boone
Hometown:Long Beach, CA
Overall:4628 out of 14792
Women:1984 out of 8860
F 25-29:299 out of 1236
Age/Grade:51.75% Place: 4945
Finish:2:07:14 Pace: 9:43
Tag Time:2:07:14
Gun Time:2:52:08
Split Times
3 Mi:29:58 Pace: 10:00
6 Mi:1:00:04 Pace: 10:01
9 Mi:1:28:38 Pace: 9:51
11 Mi:1:46:22 Pace: 9:41

OC - May 2013
Half Marathon

Runner DetailsRace Results
Name:Monique Boone
Hometown:Long Beach, CA
Overall:1819 out of 10069
Women:613 out of 6041
F 25-29:126 out of 1006
Age/Grade:56.48% Place: 1808
Finish:1:56:35 Pace: 8:54
Tag Time:1:56:35
Gun Time:2:12:46
Split Times
5 Km:28:05 Pace: 9:03
10 Km:53:32 Pace: 8:37
11 Mi:1:37:56 Pace: 8:55

It's amazing to see that I definitely got faster. And yes, each race is different and unique, but I know that I am faster and feel much better when running longer distances. Haha...Long Beach, I stopped at 11 miles. I had hit a wall. And then my goal for Huntington Beach was to not stop. And I didn't. For OC, my new goal was to be under 2 hours. I beat that goal by almost 4 minutes. From Long Beach to OC, I have improved my time by almost 40 minutes. It's amazing to see what I have accomplished. Sometimes it just makes me speechless...

7 Day Challenge - Abs (Day 1)

I looked at the calendar and realized yesterday that I start training for the Long Beach Marathon in a month -----eeeek! I was able to find a 16 week - Marathon for beginners - training schedule. It is a similar training schedule that I used for all 3 half marathons.

But I do not just want to start the marathon training. I love lifting weights and doing drills, reps, and sets, so I was able to find these 7 Day challenges put together by Skinny Ms.

Skinny Ms. is a fabulous website with slow cooker recipes and weekly fitness challenges. The one that I started today is the Abs 7 Day challenge where it takes from top fitness trainers (i.e. Bob Harper) and other videos from online and put together a great workout. They have videos explaining all the moves, so you do not have to feel lost. I have to admit that this is my first 7 Day challenge, but I managed to get through the first one today, and it was a great workout.

Monday workout:
(25) sitted, straight arm body twists w/ feet on ground
(25) sitted, straight arm body twists w/ feet lifted
(25) in and outs
(30 sec) isolation
(25) bicycles
(10 sec) isolation of each leg
(25) crunches
(25) leg lifts
(25) body throughs

Total time: 8 min

For the feet lifted, I put my feet on the wall since it was uncomfortable for me to keep my legs up and still twist. I started to really feel it during the in and outs and then there is a sprinkle of isolation. And with the leg lists, slower IS better. It really works your abs. I'm excited for tomorrow and how I feel then, but I'm glad that I'm excited.

For the rest of my workout this morning, this is what I did:

(25 min) Sitting bicycle machine
(8 min) Ab challenge
(10 min) Free weights - interval circuit - Arms
(10 min) Stretch

Total time: 53 min

Not too crazy today. Just kind of getting back into the swing of things since I took a week off from the half marathon and then being too busy and tired to commit to working out, but now that I have a plan, I can definitely get back on track.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Chicken Pot Pie Muffins

I heart this recipe!

It's healthy, cheap, fast, and delicious! The best 4 words for dinner.

Kitchen Tools:
Large bowl
Muffin tin
Spoon for mixing
Small pan

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 15 min

Can of biscuits (MUST BE A SERVING of 10. I have found this at the 99 cent only store and I would check Food4Less/Savon or any type of discount store)
Cooked shredded chicken (You can boil 1 breast of chicken and shred or buy a can of shredded chicken
1 stalk of celery chopped
2 small carrots chopped
1/2 onion (You can do more or less. I love onions)
1/2 cup of cream of chicken
1 cup of shredded gouda cheese (If you cannot find gouda, use mozzarella or WW cheese)
Dash of red vinegar

Preheat oven to 425 degrees
Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray
Press biscuits into each hole by forming a cup. Spread the dough up the sides.
In a small pan, saute the vegetables with a dash of red vinegar for 5 minutes.
Mix saute vegetables with cheese, shredded chicken and cream of chicken.
Scoop a spoonful into each hole in muffin tin where you placed a biscuit. Make sure that they are even.
Bake for 12-15 minutes. You want the tops to be brown.
Pop the muffins out and they are ready to serve.

Per muffin:


So you could have 2 muffins and a side salad and have an awesome dinner.