Monday, October 27, 2014

Taking the Cheribundi Challenge

Last Monday I had mentioned I was starting a 7 day challenge with Cheribundi. 
For those of you who may not know what Cheribundi is, it's a company that makes a variety of cherry juices. They have everything from REBUILD which contains protein for that post workout muscle recovery to RELAX that has L-Theanine which aids in relaxing your brain after a long day at work, which lets face it, is always helpful.

I have to admit, before taking on this challenge I had little knowledge of the benefits cherries/cherry juice could have if taken regularly. Here are few things I learned that may be news to you as well, if you are not a regular cherry juice drinker:

- Tart cherries contain phytonutrients and anthocyanins (SCIENCE!) which makes them a natural way to manage pain/common ailments such as gout and arthritis.
-Cherries are a natural source of melatonin. Therefore drinking cherry juice has been shown to encourage melatonin production naturally, resulting in deeper and longer nights sleep.
-Tart cherries are full of antioxidants that have been proven to increase the speed of recovery by reducing pain and muscle soreness. 

As someone who suffers from Osteoarthritis in both of my knees this was a real eye opener, if I could avoid pain during/after my workouts by drinking a Cheribundi every day that would save me a lot of money in ice and Advil!

Although I haven't felt the effects of cherry juice helping in my arthritis pain, I know it will take me longer then a week to feel relief. I definitely can tell a difference in my muscle soreness and recovery time. There was not a single day last week I felt fatigued from sore, achy muscles. 

I am also someone that struggles with getting a full nights sleep, and I must say that during this week that I was drinking 2 Cheribundi's daily I felt more rested.

After taking this challenge and learning all of the benefits cherry juice has to offer I plan on keeping it as part of my daily routine. I am hoping after a few weeks I will see the benefits more so on the pain management side then the improved sleep. I'll definitely keep you guys "in the know" on how it's going and if I feel more of a difference as time goes by.

Do you drink cherry juice?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Mind Over Matter

A few weeks ago I wrote about finding my new "fitness home" here in Alexandria.

However, right after that post went live I decided not to join that gym. I loved the Tabata class I took with my mom, but the second class I tried during my 3 day guest pass I wasn't as impressed with.

After weighing the Pros and Cons of everything I ended up joining the dreaded [by me] Planet Fitness. The reasons behind this decision were easy: Eddie as well as my friend that lives in our complex are members there, I was trying to replicate the relationship I had at my gym back home but realized that wasn't going to happen, I need to incorporate more lifting into my life, and most importantly, the cost.

I have been a member of Planet Fitness for three weeks now and I don't hate it nearly as much as I expected. I lift 4x a week and have 2 days dedicated to cardio.

Which leads to my next order of business. Since joining PF I have started running again. At first I was nervous, I wasn't sure how my knee or IT band would handle it as I am still having so many issues with squats, lunges, stairs, etc. Eddie actually got on the treadmill next to me, I started with a brisk walk and once he started jogging I decided to just go for it.

And then I just kept running.
It felt great.
I left the gym feeling sweaty but mostly, accomplished.

Although running was never something I loved to do, there was a time I was enjoying it and participated in races before I had knee pain. Now here I am 4 months post knee surgery and I am running 2-3x a week on the treadmill.

To keep things interesting I have been finding different HIIT interval workouts on Pinterest, and I am LOVING it! The time passes by really quickly and I don't find myself being tortured or miserable about the fact I am confined to a dreadmill.

Now that I am getting myself back into the running groove, I may even sign up for a few 5ks in the future.

I also started a 7 Day challenge with Cheribundi today, I'll have more details about it next week but I wanted to share my thoughts on the first drink I tried after this mornings run. The REBUILD was a great addition to my usual oatmeal breakfast.  This little guy has 8g of protein, and because it is so small it is perfect to throw into your bag for those times you are hungry and on the go.

What was your workout today?

Saturday, October 4, 2014

A Sea Of Pink [Giveaway]

The month of October represents a lot of things: Sweater weather, the return of Football, Halloween and most importantly, Breast Cancer Awareness month.

We are reminded of this at every store we walk into and every website we visit by an overwhelming sea of pink. 
Don't get me wrong, as a lover of the color I love seeing it everywhere, but I think we often forget the true meaning of Breast Cancer Awareness month in the process.

Although there are several companies, stores and websites that do in fact donate to foundations, or research there are many that don't and instead make money off of this terrible disease by just turning their products pink in some way.

One website that does help raise awareness is The Breast Cancer Site. It was founded to help fund free mammograms for women in need — women for whom early detection would not otherwise be possible. Since its launch in October 2000, the site has established itself as a leader in online activism and in the fight to prevent breast cancer deaths.

Throughout the month of October every item purchased at the Breast Cancer Site store, 3% to 50% of the retail price is donated to fund free mammograms for women in need, breast cancer research, and care for women with the disease.

In addition to that, they are hosting a giveaway. By entering you will have a chance to win an Embroidered Hope Pink Ribbon Hooded Sweatshirt, and they will make a $500 donation to help provide treatment for breast cancer patients. Nine runners-up will each also receive a sweatshirt, and everyone gets four free “Pink Ribbon Army” pins to wear and share.

All you have to do is visit the link below and enter your e-mail address for a chance to win and more importantly, a chance to help women in need.

 To enter the giveaway, click here: Breast Cancer Site Giveaway

Friday, October 3, 2014

Finding My New Fitness "Home"

One of the most difficult parts about moving for me was not leaving my friends, family or job, it was leaving my gym. It's no secret that I loved my classes and trainers there, it was my home away from home.

I started researching gyms down in Alexandria as soon as I knew I would be moving because working out is my therapy. There is nothing a sweat session cannot fix. After several weeks of searching online and reading reviews I decided to try a gym called "The Energy Club." 

I immediately fell in love with the location. The gym is tucked away inside a little village that is just off of the highway. It's so peaceful you forget you're just outside of a busy city.
The employees were all more then happy to show my mom and I around their gym, while asking us about our background. They didn't seem to be only concerned with our fitness background but who we were as individuals which was really comforting. 

What really drew me to this particular gym is the fact that it is privately owned, which is what I was also used to at home. It gives you a much more personal relationship with the trainers as well as the employees and I've found it allows you to build relationships that can carry on outside of the gym walls.

The first class I attended was Tabata. I was told the teacher was incredible and that he had just finished his third Ironman just last week! I have to admit that even though I am used to a tough workout regime 5-6 times a week this little fact about him intimidated me a bit. We were able to meet the instructor, Matt, before class and he was extremely sweet which made me feel a bit better.

Off we went to the rooftop of a 5 level car park where the class was taking place, and it was crowded! 

 The views were incredible and it made me feel like I was right back in Power X with my fitfam from back home :)

The class itself was T-O-U-G-H, but Matt was encouraging all of us to modify where we needed and to only worry about our own workout, not what anyone else was doing.
He even called both my mom and I out on several occasions and at the end of the class he came up to both of us and said how great we did with a BIG hug.

I knew right then and there that this would be the gym for me.
This is what I was used to.
This is what I needed.

And my calorie burn wasn't too shabby either ;)

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

New Beginnings

Is it really October already?
Time seems to move faster and faster with each passing day, especially as of late.

With this new month brings many new beginnings for me. I am in my new home, in my new state (Virginia) and today I am starting a new job and *crosses fingers* joining a new gym.
I am setting new goals for myself as well. I want to blog 3-4 times a week like I have in the past as well as get back on track with daily vlogging over on my YouTube channel.

Today I wanted to share some pictures of our new home from move in day, we have unpacked our entire place since taking these photos but not everything has found its final resting place here just yet. I will definitely do an updated post once everything is finished!

Master Bathroom

 View from our front door, there were no lights when we moved in so some of the pictures are dark :(
 My bathroom/guest bathroom
 Living Room

 Dining Room



The dogs seem to be adjusting well, they're loving their new view and almost everyone in our complex seems to have a dog, so there are lots of new friends to bark at!

What is one goal you're setting for October?