Staying on Track Over the Weekend

Today I’m sharing some tips and tricks for staying on track with food and fitness over the weekend.

Have a plan

I find that if I have a plan for what I’ll be doing over the weekend, it really helps keeping my healthy lifestyle going during the weekend. If I know I’m going to go out with friends for a girl’s night our or a date night with my boyfriend, I can plan to splurge during those meals and try to stay on track for breakfast and lunch. I’ll eat regularly earlier in the day so that I”m not famished by the time dinner rolls around.

I like to meal plan and plan out my workouts for the week on Sundays. That way I have a plan. Knowing what I’m going to cook and when/where I’m going to workout makes all the difference when it’s Wednesday, it’s busy, and I don’t want to have to think about what I’m going to do in terms of food and workouts.

If you’re looking for some tips on meal planning, you can find a few posts I’ve written here, here, and here.

80/20 rule

I love the concept of the 80/20 rule. The idea is that you stay on track 80% of the time and live life the other 20%. I stay on track and make healthy choices most of the time, and allow myself to eat whatever I want the rest of the time. I think it’s what I do the majority of the time that matters, not the occasional splurge or skipped workout.

Gym Elliptical

Giving myself permission to be imperfect makes it so much easier to stay on track. I know perfection is impossible, but it’s so easy to be hard on myself and expect myself to be perfect. Having that little bit of wiggle room makes eating healthy most of the time doable.

The 80/20 rule applies to workouts too. I’m happy if I get my workouts in 80% of the time. I know I’m going to have off days, low energy days, or days when I’m just not feeling 100% because of an injury or a bad night of sleep. Sometimes those are the days when I need to embrace rest instead of a hard workout.

Have healthy options available

If I don’t have healthy options in my kitchen, then I’m much more likely to order take out or get food delivered. It takes a lot more effort to make healthy decisions if there’s only junk food in the house.

I like to have the staples for a meal or two in the kitchen at all times. In my house that’s usually beef stroganoff and homemade hamburger helper. I keep the meat in the freezer, pasta and egg noodles in the pantry, other shelf stable ingredients in the pantry.

Make workout dates with friends

By the time the weekend rolls around I’m ready to relax and have some fun. I’m more likely to get in a workout if I’m combining it with some quality friend time. I’m also more likely to make it to the gym for a group fitness class or yoga studio if I know that someone is counting on me to show up.

I used to take weekly walks with a friend and her kids and dogs. We got to talk and catch up while being active at the same time. If you need some tips on scheduling workouts in your week, check out this post.

Self Care

I can be worn out and depleted of energy by the time Friday night arrives at the end of a long week. If I’m tired I’m much less likely to make good choices when it comes to food and workouts. Doing something good for myself puts me in a better frame of mind to make healthy decisions.

Using the Headspace App to Meditate

For me, that means spending some time on my own, reading, meditation, taking a quick nap, or yoga. Once I do some self care I’m re-energized and ready to live my healthiest life. If you’re interested in using the Headspace app to meditate, check out this post.

How to you stay on track and make healthy choices over the weekend?

Weekend Recap February 18 2019

Happy Tuesday! If you had the day off yesterday for the long weekend I hope you enjoyed your time off. I know I did. Today I’m sharing some highlights of my weekend.

I spent Friday night with my dad and brother. We decided that we didn’t feel like going out, so we ordered Skip the Dishes instead. We went with food from out favorite neighborhood pub. I ordered a hamburger and onion rings. Both were delicious!

Saturday afternoon I headed over to my boyfriend’s place for a date night. It was so cold and snowy out that I decided to take the train downtown instead of risk driving and getting into an accident.

I stopped at pet store on the way to get a couple treats for my boyfriend’s bulldog Winston. I was very glad once I got to my boyfriend’s place cause it was so cold out.

We ended up taking Winston for a walk in the parkade under his building. He wouldn’t have gotten very far outside, but being a puppy, he needs to get out his excess energy. I don’t think Winston cared that he wasn’t outside as long as he got his walk.

My boyfriend talked me into walking a few blocks to go get dinner instead of ordering delivery. Needless to say, leaving his place meant bundling up and leaving as little skin exposed as possible.

When we walked into Vagabond we were the only ones there. Apparently it had been pretty quiet because of the terrible weather and road conditions. It’s a good thing that we had been there before and knew that the food was good because I would have been suspicious of a restaurant that was empty.

When we got back to his place we watched Wreck It Ralph. I hadn’t seen it before but it was pretty cute. I thought John C Reilly was the perfect person to voice Ralph.

I took an Uber home for the first time! I don’t know how or why it took me so long to take an Uber – they’ve been in Calgary for a few years now. I was very glad that I didn’t have to drive and I got home safely.

I had actually forgotten that Monday was a holiday until my boyfriend mentioned it on Saturday. It’s always a nice surprise when you realize you have a long weekend. I did some menu planning, which included scheduling french toast with blueberries on top for dinner on Monday. They were delicious.

Now that you know about the highlights of my weekend, share one of yours in the comments below.

Friday Favorites February 15 2019

Today I’m sharing some of my favorite things from the past week.

Calgary is still in the midst of a deep freeze. It’s been over a week now with cold temperatures and snow. We’re supposed to get more snow this weekend. I’m more than ready for a break from the cold and snow, ugh. If anyone lives somewhere warm and is willing to share some warmer temperatures send it my way!

I hope everyone had a good Valentine’s Day yesterday. I wasn’t able to see my boyfriend yesterday, but we have plans to get together this weekend. He doesn’t read the blog, so I can share that I got him some chocolate and a little something for his bulldog puppy.

If you’re not in a relationship, I hope you were still able to have a good day. I know it can be tough when you’re single and it feels like everyone is celebrating their partner. It can feel super lonely. Treating yourself to a glass of wine or a beer while watching a favorite movie or getting takeout at your favorite restaurant can make all the difference.

Gap Workout tops

Last week I bough two workout tops from the Gap’s website. They were on sale and there was a promo code for an additional 20% off sale prices. I was very happy when they arrived quickly and I was able to wear them at yoga teacher training.

Now that I’ve worn both of them and practiced yoga in them, I’m really like the shirts. They’re comfy and held up during the yoga practices without pulling or anything. If you’re looking to buy some new workout clothes, definitely check out Gap. They wouldn’t have been the first place I would have thought of to get workout clothes, but I know I’ll be getting more from the Gap in the future.

Guacamole

My dad bought me some guacamole this week, and it’s been absolutely delicious! It’s been awhile since I last had it and I’d forgotten how good it is. I’ve been putting guacamole on everything – from baked potatoes to chips to sandwiches. My dad makes some pretty good guacamole, so I’ll have to ask him to make it for me the next time I’m craving it.

Thoughts of Dog twitter account

If you still use twitter like I do, you’ll want to make sure that you follow Thoughts of Dog. It’s seriously the best account out there if you’re a dog lover. It makes me smile every time I read a new tweet. If you need a little pick me up, go read a few of Thoughts of Dog’s tweets. There’s quite the cast of characters, the human, the stuffed friend Sebastian (who is a stuffed elephant), and the skittle under the fridge.

What’s a favorite thing of yours from the past week?

Resources for Yoga Teachers in Training

Happy Valentine’s Day! I hope you get to spend some time with your valentine today or this weekend. And if you don’t have a valentine this year I hope you spend some time to spoil yourself.

I was thinking the other day that since I’ve started yoga teacher training I’ve managed to find quite a few resources that have been really useful to me. I figured they might be useful for someone else too so I’m sharing them here. If you’re looking for some books for yoga teachers, I wrote a post about it here.

Yoga Anatomy by Leslie Kaminoff and Amy Matthews

There’s so many great details on the muscles that are used in poses. The illustrations really help to visualize which muscles are stretched or contracted, as well as how modifications can affect the body. I think Yoga Anatomy (affiliate link) would be helpful even if you’re a seasoned yoga teacher. There’s always something to learn when it comes to anatomy.

Podcasts

I could probably do a whole post just on the great podcasts that I’ve found specifically for yoga teachers, but I’ll just share my two favorite ones here.

The Connected Yoga Teacher has new episodes every week. Shannon Crow hosts and always seems to ask her guests the questions that I’m thinking myself. Episodes include “Creating Professional Yoga Videos” and “trauma Sensitive Yoga”.

The Teacher Resource Podcast is a podcast that I recently discovered a month or two ago. Hosted by Mado Hesselink, she releases new episodes every Thursday. Recent episodes include “Plan Your Classes Like a Pro” and “sales for Yoga Teachers”.

Your classmates

This might seem like an obvious one, but I completely overlooked it until I was already half way through yoga teacher training. We’ve connected online through a Facebook group so we can share notes or ask questions. They’re also a great group to bounce ideas off of. Not sure about a transition from one pose to another works? Ask them how it feels when they try it. Ask if they’d be willing to look over a class outline for you. Vent about how nervous you are before teacher and you’ll probably find someone who understands.

Yoga Notes

I’ve mentioned this ebook before, but I thought it would be worth adding here too. Being able to sketch poses instead of just writing out the names is so helpful to me when I’m planning out a class. It’s easier for me to put sequences together. I bought the ebook, but you can also get a physical book as well. The ebook was super easy to print out and it didn’t take a ton of ink.

Facebook groups

I’m a member of a few yoga teacher groups – both based here in Calgary and global ones – and they’ve all been great. People are so willing to share their knowledge and advice when questions are asked. No matter what kind of teaching situation to find yourself in, there’s always someone who’s experienced something similar and will share what worked for them.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting my blog – I appreciate it!

Upper Body Workout

Today I’m sharing an upper body strength workout.

Good morning! I hope you all got more sleep than I did last night. I stayed up late reading The Pillars of the Earth (affiliate link). I kept telling myself I’d only read to the end of the chapter, but then I couldn’t put it down.

I love big, epic books, and Pillars of the Earth definitely fits that bill. It’s actually the first book in a trilogy. I already have the second book, World Without End (affiliate link), to read, and I have a gift card that I got for Christmas that I’m going to use to buy A Column of Fire (affiliate link), the last book in the series.

All three books focus on the village of Kingsbridge in England during medieval times – first with the building of the cathedral, and then following the residents of Kingsbridge.

What good books are you reading right now? I’m always looking for suggestions. I’ve listed some of my favorite books on my books page here.

And now onto today’s workout.

This upper body workout can be done at home if you have a couple pairs of dumbbells – you’ll want to use heavier ones for the bench press and lighter ones for the tricep kickbacks. I like these ones (affiliate link) from Amazon.

Starting with the first workout, you’ll do 12 reps and three sets before moving onto the next exercise. Between each exercise rest for 1 minute. As for the weight that you should be using, use one that will be challenging but you can still have proper form on the last rep. It’s tempting to go with a higher weight, but correct form should be your top priority.

For more workouts, check out my workouts page. I have them organized by body part (upper or lower body) and type of workout (cardio, strength, HIIT).

Dumbbell bench press

With a pair of dumbbells sit on a bench, and slowly lay down. Bring the dumbbells straight over your shoulders with your arms extended. Slowly bring them down to your torso and then up back to the starting position.

Overhead press

Stand with your feet hip width apart with a dumbbell in each hand. With your upper arms in a 90 degree angle to your torso and your hands directly above your elbows, lift your hands straight up so that your arms are straight above your head. Slowly lower your hands back down to the starting position. 

Chest flyes

With a dumbbell in each hand, lie on a bench or the floor with your elbows slightly bent. Move the dumbbells in a semi circular motion above you until they meet directly above your chest. Return to the starting position by moving the dumbbells with control so that your arms are extended again. 

Bicep curls

Start with the feet hip width apart, and back in a neutral position. With a dumbbell in each hand, keep your elbows in close to your side and raise the dumbbell upwards. Movement should be at the elbow, not the wrist. Lower the dumbbell with a controlled movement, not allowing gravity to take over.

Tricep kickbacks

With a dumbbell in each hand, flex at the ankles, knees, and hips so that your torso is leaning forward slightly. Bring your arms close to your body with your elbows back slightly. Start with your forearm in a 90 degree angle to your upper arm and slowly extend your forearm until your entire arm is straight and your triceps muscles are contracted. Slowly reverse the movement so that your arm is once again at a 90 degree angle.

Talk to your doctor before beginning to workout. Honor your body and modify this workout as needed for you.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting my blog – I really appreciate it!