It’s Only Been 1 1/2 Weeks?!

By golly, my stats are suffering! I haven’t written in what seems like a millennium, but I’m pretty sure its been a week and a half. I’ve been busy wrapping up the quarter with my essays getting more difficult, more chapters of reading assigned weekly, and math making less and less sense to me. 2 more weeks! Holy crap!

Registration for Winter Quarter classes opened this morning. I thought I would have the pick of the crop, but I was surprised that damn near every English 201 online class was FULL! I settled for an online English 201 Research Paper class by a professor who was rated a B- on RateMyProfessors.com. In all fairness, he scored higher than my current English 101 teacher who has a C+. So far I have a 95% in my current English 101 class, so I’m not completely distraught.

I also registered for Biology 108 – Human Biology. Another online class that fulfills my lab requirement. Biology 108 is worth 6 credits. I was going to take Biology 100, but the only online teacher available received such terrible scores on RateMyProfessors.com that I couldn’t bring myself to register for it.

I will also be taking Math098 on campus Mondays and Wednesdays 5:30pm – 7:40pm. Looks like I will be keeping the same schedule for Winter Quarter! So psyched to keep my same routine, it’s actually not so bad.

I’ve been keeping busy hitting my fitness and health goals. I feel like some weeks this quarter I completely let myself go and only reached 3 weekly workouts. Sometimes it’s difficult to stay on top of school and training. I’ve been making it a goal to physically GO to the gym at least twice a week, and the other 2-3 days I can choose the gym or do HIIT Zuzka videos at home.

Last week I made it to the gym twice, did a killer leg session on Tuesday and an upper body, ab, and cardio workout on Thursday. On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday I did Zuzka videos at home. Holy crap her new content is KILLER! You’ll never believe it, I actually spoke with her via email directly last week!

Her original website was taken over by her previous employers and re-named Sweat Factor with new trainers added. I tried it out for a few weeks but when I noticed she wasn’t posting new videos I was upset and worried. I reached out to Sweat Factor asking where she went, and they abruptly told me my membership was cancelled and Zuzka was no longer a part of Sweat Factor. I managed to find her NEW site and tried using my old login which was invalid. I emailed her new site and was honored to speak to Z herself! I asked her what happened and she explained the whole story about her working for Sweat Factor under a work visa, how they owned all her old content, videos, etc. Now she has her own company and I love her new website layout and workouts. I might actually get a feature on her blog too!

zuzka2

On top of that great news, I resigned my athlete contract with Femme Nutrition and received new Peach skin tightening cream for my tush, and their new supplement line of pre-workout, carnitine, and BCAA’s! This month I didn’t receive the carnitine supplement but I received 2 flavors of their pre-workout. The Passion Fruit flavor is to die for! It gives me good clean energy without the anxiety and jitters afterwards. I used to get really bad anxiety from pre-workout like Red Line, Speed Stack, and Endo Rush. The Pineapple BCAA’s are also super tasty, I’m very pleased with the taste and quality Femme Nutrition has produced. As a sponsored athlete I receive monthly packages from them and features on their blog.

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MORE GREAT NEWS!

I was nominated as the lucky grand prize winner on Influenster for the Victoria’s Secret VoxBox! My YouTube Review of the Incredible Victoria’s Secret Sport Bra and workout crops landed me a $500 Victoria’s Secret Gift Card! I was absolutely thrilled when I opened the email last week! I literally had to rub my eyes to make sure I was reading the amount correctly. Apparently there were fifty $50 gift card winners and one $500 gift card winner. I feel so blessed that I was chosen!

VS2All and all its been a pretty great week and a half since I last wrote. This week is a 3 day work week, we have a 4 day weekend with plenty of food, sleep, family time, and time spent with the hubby! 2 more weeks until Christmas break, so excited! I hope everyone has a great holiday weekend spent being grateful with family 🙂

~Jess

DISCLAIMER: I have received ‘Influenster’ products complimentary for testing purposes

Cardio & Lifting Challenge!

Today I’m going to be trying out this new cardio workout as a warm up to my lifting session. I’ve never tried it before, but it looks like it will get your sweaty, keep your heart rate elevated, and focus on your glutes.

Lately I’ve been using exercise combos during my plyometric warm ups to focus on my glutes and I can tell a HUGE difference! I don’t know if I’m just looking for booty gains and hallucinating, but my butt definitely looks and feels perkier, rounder, and lifted.

For my lift I want to try this Leg Superset. It looks like a challenge, but I’m more than willing to accept so I can reap the benefits of having a stronger lower half and of course a nice booty 🙂 I’ve been a little obsessed with the muscle gains I’ve been making and I’m interested to see where I can take my body physically in strength WHILE….. also maintaining lean body mass and agility.

NLA

Derek and I have decided that we want to run a half marathon on Thanksgiving day before the gluttonous festivities! I haven’t ran outdoors for a few weeks now and the weather has only gotten worse. I will have to take my training indoors soon. We won’t be registering for a race, him and I will run 13.1 miles around our house. Better start training!

Try these workouts if you dare! Has anyone tried incorporating Pistol Squats into their workouts yet? Let me know!

~Jess

Confession Time

*Le siiiiigh* Yes, my usual conundrum. Of course I didn’t workout yesterday, yesterday was a Monday! Why do I still schedule a workout for Monday? I have no clue.

That’s not the worse bit. I also didn’t go to the gym TODAY…. yes I know, I know. BOoooo Jess, boooo. I have an excuse though, a really good one! I hardly caught a wink of sleep last night, it was horrendous. Tossing and turning all night long, couldn’t seem to calm my mind. Too much brain stimuli. Right when I was on the verge of sleep I would jerk back awake and lie there kicking myself. At first I told myself, “You know what, NO excuses, it doesn’t matter how much sleep you get, get your ass on out of bed.” At that point, I assumed I would fall asleep at SOME point, but I hardly did.

4am rolls around and of course I was lying awake before Derek’s alarm went off. His alarm starts to go off and I just moan in agony and frustration. He asks me what’s wrong and I tell him I didn’t sleep all night. So I made the decision to sleep in a few hours so as not to be an unpleasant B**** at work. I slept a lot heavier until 7am. When I woke up and got out of bed I packed up to head to the gym. NOT to workout but to take a shower instead because our water heater erupted last night! NO WATER! I use water for everything! My coffee, washing my face, brushing my teeth, hydrating myself, and showering!

So I’m sitting here at work feeling groggy and disappointed I didn’t make it to the gym like I had hoped. I haven’t had coffee today, so I’m making ends meet with green tea instead. My friend Kat was sweet enough to buy me Sleepy Time tea for me to try tonight. Tonight I’m going to go to bed earlier, and make sure I’m not on my computer or phone an hour before bed. I got so caught up on Instagram last night and this new Kik app.

I think my sleep schedule might be thrown off from having the past 5 days off to sleep in and workout later in the day. I’ve also been thinking about my new suit NONE STOP! So stoked! Woo hoo! Haha! Yesterday I wasn’t feeling well from having too much caffeine and not enough food. My tummy was super nauseous. I had my usual cup of coffee in the morning at home, 2 bags of green tea when I got to work, and another Grande coffee at lunch time. YIKES! Caffeine addiction much?

I will finish the week out strong though! I’ll be working out Wednesday through Sunday, 5 days this week. I needed at least one rest day (yesterday) since I reached my goal of 6 workouts last week. An extra day might have been needed, if not for my physical well being, at least my mental well being. GIVEUP

On a more positive note, I’m really excited about my progress even through the Thanksgiving feasting! I feel leaner than I ever have, definitely have a solid core and my upper body is coming in so nicely. So excited for January to roll around so I can kick it into high gear! 6 days a week no excuses! An hour of cardio and an hour of lifting! Trying to imagine what my show shape will be like and my tummy is getting butterflies again! EEEEEK! I feel a win in April…. I really feel it.

Little reminder in the picture on the right…..

~Jess ♥

Great Thanksgiving and Great Workouts!

I hope everyone else’s Thanksgiving was as awesome as mine! I had a really great time with family that I hadn’t seen in 15 years! Great grandparents, great Aunts and Uncles, cousins, second cousins, halves of this and halves of that…. WHEW! Hard to keep track of the family tree, especially since I’m so “new” to it. If you know anything about me, or have read past posts, you’ll know that I was adopted at age 7, and lost all contact with my biological family until the summer of this year. I definitely have some history, good, bad, ugly, and just plain bizarre. I might write a book about it one day!

Anyways, I met a lot of relatives and had an awesome time! There’s so much that I’m thankful for this year, and one of the number one things I’m thankful for is reconnecting with my biological family. They are all so kind and gracious, so quick to call me family and accept me back as one of their own. They have been looking for me for years! I honestly never thought I would see them or hear from them again. I am definitely blessed beyond measure.

I would say there were about….. 20 people there, it was a very big group! Kaienna made friends with my Great Uncle Scott’s daughter named Nora, I guess that would make her my second cousin? I think? Kaienna is 4 years old and Nora is 5 years old. They had a great time! Kaienna was glued to Nora’s hip all night, they played together really well. My Uncle Rob was there and he brought 2 types of beer that he brewed, both were absolutely delicious AND potent! I was very impressed, he’s also a really funny cool guy. My Great Aunt Cheryl was there with her fiance Barry and his 3 kids, as well as her 2 kids Ryan and Amber which would make them my second cousins again? There were just a lot of people! I don’t want to embarrass myself and continue listing everyone, just in case I forget some people.

The food was GREAT! I only had one round of dinner since I had such a small breakfast and I’m sure my stomach has shrunk over time. Mind you, it was a very large plateful! There was turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, marshmallow coconut candied sweet potatoes, cranberry and pecan fruit salad with whip cream, dinner rolls, and this delicious broccoli, egg, onion, cheddar casserole….. mmmm good! Whew, my belly wasn’t quite ready to pop until after dessert. I had some of Aunt Cheryl’s pumpkin spice, walnut bars with whip cream. Soooooo good! It had a light fluffy texture and she added just the right amount of spices, ’twas amazing! Man…. after dessert I was about to POP! Good thing I was smart and wore stretchy yoga pants.

After a full day of drinking, eating, laughter, meeting new relatives, and great conversation, we headed home around 7:30pm. We rented Monster’s University and enjoyed a slice of my leftover apple pie before turning in for the night. It was a really great day, I can’t stress how perfect it was given how crazy my past has been. Unfortunately I was unable to get any pictures, but that’s alright, I was too busy soaking in and enjoying the moment.

In case you were wondering, YES I did workout Thanksgiving day and YES I did work out today, the day after the carb-load feast! Yesterday’s workout was designed to boost my metabolism for hours after working out, so I could burn more of that Thanksgiving meal. HIIT, cardio, plyos, you name it! I wanted to back off my legs today since Leg Day on Wednesday killed them and they seemed to hurt WORSE this morning! Today I did a mile warm up and did super sets of triceps, shoulders, and chest. I was short on time so I was unable to fit that 15-20 minute run in afterwards like I usually do. Tomorrow I will be adjusting my pre-written workout to use resistance bands at home since Derek will be training clients in the morning and will need me to stay at the house to watch Kaienna. Tomorrow is core, back, and biceps!

Today was the last day of my David Barton Gym 2 week trial membership, I’m pretty sad about it, but I’m also thankful to be getting my basketball court back at L.A. Fitness for sprints! I enjoyed my 2 weeks there, now I’m even more motivated to smash Emerald Cup and earn my PT cert so I can work there one day. All of the people there are so friendly, very personable, and not once did I feel like they were after my money. I can definitely feel their passion for bodybuilding, health, and fitness. I got to meet a couple of really cool people too.

I wanted to address something in this post that I’ve been thinking about today. The definition of ‘bodybuilding.’ People typically think of bodybuilders as cocky juice heads who pick up heavy things and put them down. People think they strictly lift weights, bulk up, and smash things. I want to redefine what bodybuilding personally means to ME. To me, bodybuilding is an art, it takes true perseverance and dedication to rock at this sport. It doesn’t mean you strictly lift, or you have to take roids, or you have to take supplements, powders, and eat hardly anything. It doesn’t even mean you have to win! It means that you’re an artist and you can take control and sculpt your body into ANYTHING you want. You can push your body to the limits and literally create something. It’s so freakin’ cool! Creating a beautiful shape isn’t even the limit, you can push beyond that and make your body perform to the max, push past any resistance, create mental strength as well as physical strength.

I can’t wait to see where I can take my body, watch it transform, watch my mind transform as well. I will never mistreat my body, I won’t pour crap into it, I won’t starve myself, I’m going to do this the healthy way. People are going to notice that something unique, and it’s going to be because I trained different. Yes, there are going to be rough patches and I’ll mentally and physically be at the lowest of lows, but I’m going to get up so high too and that’s worth it! The diet WILL be crazy, but I’m not going to be malnourished, I will give my body what it needs. People will recognize the difference, and hopefully I will love this sport, rock at it, and continue performing with my own style.

Whew…. sorry for the rant, but that’s what I’ve been thinking about today after meeting some really cool people at David Barton. I wish I knew more people and could network better, this is something I love and I wish other people loved it as much as me. We’ll see what the future holds! Have a great weekend everybody, stay tuned! XOXO

~Jess ♥

 

Productive Hump Day!

Today was VERY productive, regardless of how late I actually slept in. I know, I know! I said I would get out of bed early to take on the day and have that many more hours blah, blah, blah. I ended up getting out of bed at 9am, enjoyed my coffee, read up on my social media and left the house for the David Barton Gym at 11am. I missed my bus! I literally watched it leave me…. boohoo. The next one wasn’t going to come for another 16 minutes, so I decided to walk there. I beat the bus too! Typically I like to take the bus since 8th street is so damn busy, but in this case it seemed fitting to walk on my day off. Pretty stressful walk! Half the time there weren’t any cross walks or pedestrian lights, so it was a gamble not getting hit by cars coming on and off the freeway ramp. I like to live on the edge…..

Leaning out!

Leaning out!

Had a KILLER workout! Loved it, hamstrings are on FIRE! Incorporating the HIIT cardio plyometric body weight exercises was a plus, just what I needed. Really trying to lean out and keep that bulk at bay. Not to mention, the more out of breathe I feel, the harder I feel like I’m working. I feel I get the best results that way.

After killin’ it at the gym, I went and tanned at Seattle Sun Tan and I actually didn’t burn! Feel like I have a pretty good chance of getting a base color going without frying my skin first. After I went tanning I took a pair of Lululemons I scored at a consignment store into the Lulu store to get hemmed. Finally! I’ve been wanting to do that, I probably never would have if I didn’t do it today. I took the bus home and took Keyda for a walk BACK into Bellevue, this time going down 12th street. I took her to a park for a brief moment, but the owner of another older dog asked me to ‘call my dog’ because his dog likes doing her own thing…. too bad his dog was following mine, not the other way around. That sorta put me in a stink mood. She’s a good dog, sheesh! It’s a public park, other people are going to have their dogs off leash too….

Keyda and I walked back home and stopped by Whole Foods to pick up some apples for the apple pie I’m bringing for Thanksgiving at my Great Grandparents tomorrow. Right now my pie is cooling down, I hope it’s good! I forgot to peel half the apples, so hopefully the skins don’t make a huge difference…. OOoops! I’m excited for tomorrow! Going to stuff my face and spend time with the FamBam! You can bet I’m waking up bright and early to workout too. I actually rearranged my workouts so better suit my mass consumption of Thanksgiving food. Instead of doing chest, shoulders, and back tomorrow I’m picking up the pace and sweating more with cardio, core, and glutes. Yippeeee, make room for mashed tatters!

Anywho, I better call it a night, Happy Thanksgiving everybody! XOXO

~Jess ♥

 

It’s my Friday…. AGAIN!

Today’s my Friiiidaaaaay again! So excited to have the next 5 days off, I have plans to relax as well as be productive. I’m going to wake up at 4am regardless, I’m not going to waste my day sleeping in! Tomorrow I’m doing body weight exercises, plyometrics, cardio and LEGS! Gonna feel the buuuuuurn, really take time to focus on my muscles and core engagement.

groundturkey

Tonight I had one of my easy favorites for dinner! Derek and I love making Ground Turkey & Quinoa Whole Wheat Wraps. Here is the recipe:

1. Bring 1 cup of dry quinoa to a boil in a sauce pan, place lid on sauce pan and let steam on low.

2. In separate medium sauce pan, cook 1lb – 1.5lbs ground turkey with Paprika, Cayenne Pepper, and Garlic Salt. lafactoria

 

3. Once both the quinoa and ground turkey are fully cooked, combine in one pan with an 11oz can of drained corn and a 15oz can of drained black beans. Keep warm on low to serve. 

4. Use ‘LaTortilla Factory‘ Low Carb Whole Wheat tortilla wraps to make a burrito and add shredded cheese! MMmmm delicious! 

 

Try the recipe out and let me know what you think! If you guys have any suggestions for new recipes, please let me know, I’m always open to new ideas for healthy eats.

Right now I’m enjoying some Ginger Tea and honey watching 30 Rock making plans for tomorrow. Aside from working out I’m going to go tanning, getting my Lululemons from ‘Between Friends Consignment’ hemmed, paying some bills, running some errands, and baking an apple pie for Thanksgiving at my Great Grandparents.

I’m so thankful for this time of the year! Spending quality time with the family and relaxing before the craziness ensues again. I definitely need the mental break! Life has been so insane. Finances, moving, work, working out, goals, and losing track of time. Time has been flying by so quickly! January is going to roll around the corner any minute, and I want to be ready for it. The next month I’m going to clear my mind, learn to enjoy and live in the moment, set my priorities, and focus on my goals. I want January 2014 to start fresh and I want to be so motivated to take on challenges and succeed!

With that being said, I better head to bed so I can wake up 4am to crush the day. Good night everybody! Hope everyone had a great Tuesday XOXO

~Jess ♥