Tag Archives: health and fitness

365 Days of Fitness – The Halfway Point!!

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Yup!! This morning’s Strong Curves workout marked day 183 and the halfway point of my 365 Days of Fitness!! This is when the going gets tough and the tough get going (to work)!! Time to make my breakthrough. For the last decade, I have started falling off after 6 months of exercising regularly and eating well.  And, this year, I am committed to breaking that pattern!! My new mantra is: “If you’re tired of starting over again, stop quitting.” I will also be reminding myself, “It’s a LOT easier to STAY in shape than it is to GET BACK INTO shape.” Because, at 41 years of age, it’s definitely getting even harder!! The ol’ joints just aren’t what they used to be!!!

On another note, I picked up a Polar FT4 heart rate monitor watch from Amazon about a month ago and am really liking it!! I purchased it after reading many positive reviews about it from my curlfriends on IG!! I’ll have to do a review soon. But, quickly, you wear a chest strap and then input your height, weight, and sex into the “watch” to get a more accurate reading for calories burned during your workout. And, you can monitor whether you are training inside or outside of your optimal heart rate zone.

Finally, here are a couple progress pics from the beginning of my challenge to now. The first one speaks for itself.

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Next up is a collage of pics that show where I was in August 2011 and wanted to get back to when I started this is a 28 Day Challenge back in February. The middle picture was essentially my starting point when I weighed 148.5 pounds. And, the last pic is Day 172 seen above, where I am down about 23 pounds. I actually weigh more in the August 2013 pic than I do in the August 2011 pic, but think I look more muscular. So, I’m cool with that!!

Progression

This last pic is from a night out last Friday. I looked like a lumpy sausage stuffed badly in its casing when I purchased this dress last November after seeing Folake of Style Pantry rocking it here! So, it hung in the closet until last week, when I was looking for another dress and stumbled across it. Let’s just say, I was pretty dang pleased when I saw how it fits now (I know, it doesn’t look like it, but I was!!! LOL!! :)). #WINNING

Ellidresscollage(The dress is from Elli, but is no longer available. Sorry!!)

And, just because … this cracked me up when I saw it, because I hop out of bed around 5:30 am every weekday morning, give Wei a kiss, and then hit the basement for my workout (well, after a leisurely cup of coffee). So, I could relate. LOL!!

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For a daily dose of 365 Days of Fitness (plus hair, food, and random acts of nerdiness), follow me on Instagram and/or Facebook!!

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Have you been on a roller coaster ride with your health and fitness? What have you done or are you doing to “stop the madness?”

 

Oooooppps … I Forgot to Pick a Winner

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weusi jumping ropeby Weusi

I had this LOOONNNNG post about why I forgot to pick a winner for my Workout Giveaway and blamed it on my work schedule, technology and my selective memory.

But, for real … in the end … I JUST FOR FORGOT!

So, with no further ado … (drumroll) … the winner is …

APRIL WELLS

E-mail your address to hairscapades@gmail.com and you’ll have a jump rope coming your way!

And just for the record, I expect that there will be a report of some kind that comes out in the next year or two that says jumping rope is one of the top 5, easiest, economical, most effective, and efficient exercises EVER! When it comes out, remember where you heard it first!

Stay safe and eat healthy over the hoildays …
PATRIOTIC_food
(Click the picture to see more!)
HAPPY JUMPING APRIL!!!
SHiNE

Progress and Stepping It Up!

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Okay, sorry. Another fitness post. I know. Promise, there will be a hair one soon. But, I just had to share my progress!! So, hope that you don’t mind!! I’m down to about 130/131 pounds (varies when I step on the scale ;)) from my starting point of 148.5 back on 2/18/13!! And, my dedication and consistency  (can’t even call it hard work as I’ve exercised a LOT harder in the past – 2 hours a day 5-6 days a week + 100% clean eating) are really paying off!!

weigh-in (5-12-13)Got off, got back on and it said 131.5. Go figure.

Now, I will say this, I lose weight on my upper body far more quickly than my lower body. So, the last 10 or so pounds that I want to lose is mostly on my lower half and I pulled out the big guns last week to help me lose it!

1. Pre-workout breakfast smoothie (see this article on the importance of fueling up before a work out).

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I had not been eating before my morning workouts. I would just have a cup of coffee and hit the basement with my water bottle. I have always hated the feeling of a full stomach when working out and didn’t feel I had the time needed to allow a breakfast to digest properly before working out (30-60 minutes). However, given that I’d begun running for longer periods and wanted to improve my performance all around, I knew I needed to start fueling up. Enter the quick digesting, pre-workout breakfast green smoothie!! I knew I wanted oatmeal in my smoothie, so I did some research and cobbled together the following recipe from a few that I found online.

Pre-workout Breakfast Green Smoothie

1 c. fresh spinach, kale or collard greens (omega 3s/magnesium)
1/2 frozen banana (simple carb/potassium)
1/4 c. frozen strawberries (simple carb/potassium)
1/4 cup ground oatmeal (the NutriBullet mill does this in SECONDS!!) (complex carb/fiber/magnesium)
1 scoop Nectar Vanilla Bean Torte OR Strawberry Mousse protein Powder
3/4 c. unsweetened almond milk
1/4 c. water

2. My new NordicTrack C700 treadmill (3 week nightmare that it was to get it :().

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3. My Delfin Spa Bio-Ceramic Anti-Cellulite shorts (I have 3 pair).

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They beat the Zaggora in my opinion as you don’t feel the sweat until you remove them.
With Zaggora, the sweat drips out of the legs as you work out! Ewwwwww!!!

4. Green Coffee Bean Extract (purchased a LivingSocial deal after watching a Dr. Oz segment on its effectiveness).

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To see the Dr. Oz segment, click here. There are 5 clips total, but the last 4 are very short.

I know the first two things will work, as they are tried and true for me. But, the coffee bean extract is the unknown. I first learned about green coffee bean extract back in November and ordered some online. But, within seconds of placing my order, I realized that I may have been scammed. The source was an unauthorized Dr. Oz Facebook page and there were some forced internet pages, so I cancelled my order AND my credit card. Then, I did more research and found that green coffee bean extract is legit, that Dr. Oz doesn’t endorse any particular brand, but he does provide strict guidelines for buying an authentic product (part 5 of video series): 1. Must be pure (zero fillers, zero binders, zero artificial ingredients) √, 2. Must contain at least 45% chlorogenic acids √, 3. Must say Svetol® or GCA √.  He also indicated that the capsules can range in size from 200 to 800 mg, which is fine. Anywho, the studies and his experiment showed that this product enables people to lose up to 2 pounds a week without changing anything in their diet or exercise routine!!

So, when I saw the LivingSocial deal for The Official GreenCoffeeBean Extract brand ($29 for a 3 month supply) and checked out the site to validate the “must haves,” I decided to try again. The pills arrived last Friday and I started taking them that very night. Since Saturday, I have taken them twice a day, 30 minutes before breakfast and dinner. The pills have less caffeine than 1/2 a cup of coffee and, so far, I haven’t experienced any jitters, sleeplessness or side effects. I’m hoping that with continued daily workouts and eating cleanly, I’ll see some great results over the next few weeks and will be able to show you some lean and mean legs too ;)! You know that I’ll keep you guys posted!!

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What big guns do you pull out of your arsenal when trying to lose those last 10 lbs?

I Did That!!

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Last week was marked with achievement for me as it relates to my ongoing personal fitness goals!! It began the Sunday before last when I was able to do side crow for the first time ever in hot yoga!!!

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“OMGosh! OMGosh! I can’t believe I’m doing this!!”

And, I didn’t do it just once; I did it THREE times!!! I was able to do it on both sides during practice and then my bestie/yoga buddy take this pic of me doing it again after class ended!! Okay … so, I haven’t been able to do it since … but, I now know that I can do it and can do it again!! I also tried scorpion (assisted against the wall and with my arms strapped around my elbows) for the first time! And, it was pretty good for a first try!! Woot Woot!!

So, at the end of yoga, my bestie tells me about this Superhero 5K in Morristown the following Saturday. She knew I finished C25K (she was 5 weeks in and we were talking about signing up for the Morristown Warriors Dash). She is also well aware of my love of comics/cartoons and knew this would be right up my alley. How fitting would it be that my first 5K in life be superhero themed?!?! So, when I got home, I looked it up and saw that the 5K was not only fun, but to raise money to bring clean water to Africa and Central America. Superhero-themed and for a good cause? Sign me up and call me Batman!!

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Oh! How could I forget?! Part of the reason this came up was because of a belated birthday gift from my buddy Fernando! Batsocks!!

And so, this past Saturday, I ran my first ever 5K!! And, I did not walk once!!

(Click pics to enlarge/read captions)

 

Let me tell you, those hills are a b@#$!! LOL!! But, I am very pleased to say that I ran it in 34:40.92 minutes, which was an  11:09 mph pace! So, this is right about on par with the 5.5 mph pace I’ve been running on the treadmill! And, I was came in 114th place out of 498 women!!! Woot Woot squared!! LOL! My goal is to be able to run a 5K in 30 minutes or less … but one day at a time :).

So yeah … great week for me personal fitness challenge wise :)! And, as of yesterday, I’m 3 months/84 days into this working out for at least 10 minutes every day!! When I started this, I was just trying to get past the 3 week hurdle. I am totally ecstatic that I’ve come this far and don’t see myself stopping now!

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Have you recently accomplished a health and/or fitness goal? Dish!!

Thank You!!

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NB1Move over Osterizer, there’s a new kid in town!!

Okay, so I’m home today … was feeling horrible this morning due to a severe allergy attack that began late last week, so I took the day from work. Finally got some much-needed Sudafed earlier this morning (you know, the behind the counter, pseudoephedrine containing, we need your name, ID and a blood sample before we’ll let you buy this kind) and have begun to feel like myself again.

So, a little while ago, I bust open the birthday gift that arrived on my doorstep yesterday. And so, I just wanted to pop on really quickly to share it and send my future in-laws a huge:

THANK YOU!!!

If you read the comments around here, you may see “Dad” commenting now and again. That’s Wei’s dad :)!! He and Wei’s mom check in on Wei and me here regularly :). I was going to text a pic and thank them, but my sister suggested a post!! And, I thought, “That’s even better!!” Love you both and I am so grateful and blessed to be able to call you family!!

So, yeah, that’s it. Oh, and here are pics of the un-boxing and me putting it through its paces for the first time!! Love it!

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Yeah, I know, doesn’t look that good, but it was! Tried chia seeds for the first time! Can’t wait to put this puppy into action with some more green smoothie recipes!!
Thank you again!!

Green Smoothies: Frozen Veggies Better Than Fresh?

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Okay, so now that I’m on the “eating clean” game, I’m trying to incorporate green smoothies into my diet. In the past, I found it difficult to be consistent as I HATE grocery shopping weekly to get fresh produce … and I never have enough time to do all the rinsing/washing/ peeling/de-stalking, etc. that is required. So, stuff inevitably spoils and has to be trashed (I HATE being wasteful of my money and food even more than I hate grocery shopping).

So, when someone suggested I use frozen veggies in my smoothies to eliminate the need for ice, I had an “Ah Ha” moment!! Forget not using ice. From what I’d read, frozen veggies might be even better than fresh!!

via LiveStrong.com

The nutrients of fresh vegetables begin to deteriorate from the instant they are harvested. Results from the Institute of Food Research presented in the NY Daily News reveals that fresh vegetables such as green beans lose 45 percent of their nutrients; broccoli and cauliflower, 25 percent; carrots, 10 percent; and peas up to 15 percent after 16 days of storage. With fresh vegetables, you never know how long it has been since they were picked and the amount of nutrients that were lost en route to the market unless you are buying from a local farmer. With vegetables that are frozen in their prime, you can savor most of the nutrients that were present at the time of freezing.

As much as I use frozen veggies to supplement my Lean Cuisines, I don’t know why I never thought to use them for smoothies! DUH!!!! I mean, they are frozen at the peak of ripeness, hence nutrient rich. They are already washed and cut. They can last for months in the freezer!! And most of the time, they cost far less than fresh produce!! How much more economical, quick and convenient can you get?!?!?

That being said, I picked up some frozen spinach (which I always keep in the freezer) and kale at the grocery store last week and whipped up the green smoothie above last Saturday! With protein, fiber, Omega-6, potassium and a variety of other vitamins and minerals, it was a perfect post-workout recovery meal!

SPINACH, KALE, BANANA, PROTEIN GREEN SMOOTHIE RECIPE

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8 oz. water

6 oz. almond milk (30 cal)

1 lightly thawed frozen banana (100 cal)
(suggestion: PEEL first, then freeze! LOL!)

1/2 c. frozen spinach (15 cal)

1 c. frozen kale (25 cal)

1 tbsp flax seeds (47 cal)

1 scoop Nectar Strawberry Mousse Whey Protein (100 cal)

Total:  317 Calories

HEALTHY and DELICIOUS!! 

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Do you use fresh or frozen veggies in your green smoothies? If you use both, which do you prefer fresh and which do you prefer frozen and why?

28 Day Fitness Challenge: Days 22-28

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Day28

YES!! I did it!! I worked out for a minimum of 10 minutes a day for 28 consecutive days!! And, I’m feeling so good, I plan to keep it going for another 28!! I’m really on a mission to lose this weight maaaaaang!!! LOL!

On the diet front, I was really challenged food-wise this weekend too. If you don’t know, I am a massive buttercream icing FIEND!! Like, I’ve eaten it straight out of the tub #dontjudgeme. So, I’m not kidding you when I tell you I had to exercise great will power to not indulge in even one slice of the desserts that abounded at my sister’s house this weekend. I went down for a surprise going away party for my bro-in-laws best friend on Saturday night and a girls’ book club meeting on Sunday. I knew that this would be a real test, but I was dedicated to succeeding as I felt this week 4 was so critical for me in regard to staying on the path to losing this weight. So, I did not partake of the carrot cake, carrot cake cupcakes, banana pudding, vanilla cupcakes or red velvet cake. Okay, wait, I did eat one spoonful of my sister’s low fat banana pudding … no cookie in it though. But that was it!! On Saturday, I mostly ate fruit and veggies and took small portions of shrimp, a spoonful of an Asian chicken salad, two turkey meatballs and two spinach balls. On Sunday, it was fruit and veggies again, one small boneless BBQ wing and the insides of two roast beef, grilled onions, pepper and arugula sandwiches.

Why did my sister make me take the cake to bring to work?!? She’s killing me!!

So yeah, as of this morning, I’ve lost 9 pounds. Woot! Woot!! Have you ever noticed that the same exact weight looks and feels different on the way down versus on the way up? When I’m gaining weight, it is “sloppy,” because I’m inactive and eating badly. So, my stomach protrudes, my posture isn’t great and I’m bloated. When I’m losing weight, my body starts getting tighter, my posture is better because my core is getting stronger and I don’t retain as much “water weight.” So the same exact weight that felt sucky on the way up, feels so much slimmer on the way down. Go figure!!

Anywho, getting through the first 4 weeks of exercising and diet is so critical for me. From here on out, it should get a little easier as I’ve gotten used to the morning exercise routine, I’m getting in bed by 11 pm, I’m not hungry all of the time and I feel good!! So, yeah, I’m pretty psyched and feeling really motivated!! C25K Week 4 starts today and I’m going up from 9 minutes of running to 16 though!! Dang!! They just changed it up on a sista!! But, that’s okay. ‘Cuz, I’m gonna get ‘er done!! 😉

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Time for 28 Day Fitness Challenge, Round TWO!! Who’s with me?!?!

28 Day Fitness Challenge: Days 8-14

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Hair

Alright, I know this is a hair blog, so I’ll open this with a little hair update. LOL!! I’ve been doing the least as my priority right now is getting my body/health back in order … hair is secondary. But, it still has its needs ;). So, last weekend, I did the following:

  • Pre-pooed with Vatika Oil mixed with Aubrey Honeysuckle Rose conditioner overnight.
  • Shampooed with diluted Shea Moisture Raw Shea Moisture Retention shampoo.
  • Conditioned and finger detangled with Herbal Essences Hello Hydration (HE HH) and rinsed.
  • Deep conditioned with Jessicurl Weekly Deep Treatment with added EVOO, JBCO and VCO.
  • Cooled and sealed with diluted HE HH.
  • Applied a modified kimmaytube leave-in conditioner (2 tbsp KCKT, 2 tbsp AVJ, 2 tsp JBCO/EVOO).
  • Set my hair in 8 twists (I think … I’m going off memory at this point).

On Monday, I wore my twists up and on Tuesday night, I removed them to stretch my hair further by placing it into 6 braids. Tuesday, I wore my hair in a low bun. On Wednesday, I placed it in a mid-height bun using a banana clip made two big twists, and wrapped and pinned them around the banana clip. I wore my hair like that through this past Sunday, re-setting it twice.

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It stayed well-moisturized, which was a relief. My ends in the back crown had been feeling rough and dry lately, so this was a welcome result. I’m definitely back to the kimmaytube leave-in and protective styling … oh yeah, I was supposed to be extending that bun challenge to right about now, wasn’t I?!?! LOL!! Well, it continues.

Oh, and I didn’t wash it this weekend … had the henna thawed for the second time in two weeks … but, just wasn’t feeling like dealing with an all day hair event and didn’t even feel like washing it period. I will definitely have to do something this weekend … henna may not make the cut again however, even though it’s sorely needed. But, for now, I put it in four braids after henna and it’ll be in another bun for the week … maybe even the same one! I should try to be more creative though, shouldn’t I? *shrugs*

Health & Fitness

Okay, now to my real focus for the week :). I’m at the halfway point of my personal 28 Day Fitness Challenge!!! I’ve lost 5-5.5 lbs since starting 2 weeks ago and I’m feeling better and motivated. Morning work-outs are definitely a necessity for me right now as I am so burned out after work. I know that although I might start the day with the best intentions, at the pace I’m going right now, there is no way I’d have the energy or motivation to get it done after work. It also feels really good to be done exercising shortly after starting my day. The one thing that sucks is that I can’t workout longer when I’m feeling good as I have to get to work. Right now I’m getting up at 5:30 a.m. to give myself 30 minutes to get my cup of coffee in and wake-up. But, I always end up taking 45 minutes to get it together. So, I may need to get up a little bit earlier if I want to get a little extra in.

Anywho, here is how week 2 went down (click on pics to enlarge and read captions). If you follow Hairscapades on Instagram or Facebook, you can skip this part as you’ve seen these already ;).

Okay, that was the fitness, this is the health. For me, weight loss has always required both exercise and a good diet. They work hand-in-hand and I think contribute equally to allowing me to reach my goals. This is because mentally they are tied together for me. If I’m not eating well, I don’t exercise … if I don’t exercise, I don’t eat well. So, I’ve definitely been focused on making certain that I eat breakfast every day, bring a healthy lunch and snacks to work and eat a balanced dinner. I’ve also been drinking a protein shake and taking my vitamins with my cereal post my morning work-out.

The thing is, because my body has gotten used to more calories, I’m hungry, so I’ve incorporated a few snacks that I’ll eventually wean out.

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The Bakery on Main Gluten Free Granola is to die for!! OMGosh, this stuff is so good … and so easy to overeat with a serving being only 1/3 of a cup (140 calories/6-7 g of fat). The Cranberry Orange Cashew tastes like crunchy nuggets of Fruity Pebbles!! Ooooooh weeeeeh!! But, I’m trying to keep it together … I wasn’t even planning on buying anymore of this stuff … until I saw it in the line of Marshall’s for $1 less than it cost me in Shop-rite! DANG!! Oh, and the dry roasted edamame is about the same calories, but with a lot more fiber. Also, it’s not so sweet and delicious, so it’s easier to control my serving size. That’ll be my longer term snack as it doesn’t set off my sugar/carb addiction!

Blueberry, Banana, Strawberry Mousse Protein Smoothie

And finally, I want to start incorporating some smoothies, especially green ones, into my diet. I don’t think I’ll do them daily, but I can at least make time to mix some up a couple of days a week. This Sunday, I made a nice strawberry, banana, blueberry protein smoothie to power me up for hot yoga and it was awesome!!

proteinsmoothie

8 oz. almond milk (40 cals)
8 oz. water
1 scoop Nectar Strawberry Mousse protein powder (100 cals)
1 banana (105 cals)
1 c. frozen Dole blueberries (70 cals)
1 tbsp whole flaxseeds (47 cals)
2 ice cubes
Total: 362 calories

I debated throwing some frozen spinach into the mix, but didn’t want to take the chance that it would make it nasty. But, I’ll give it a try on a smaller batch on another day. In fact, this was a LOT of smoothie, more than 2 large cup fulls. So, I can definitely half the recipe and save some calories! I need to hit the grocery store (should have done that yesterday) to get some fruit and veggies with which to experiment. I’m going with frozen as much as possible as I like the convenience and shelf life. More importantly, I’ve also read that frozen fruits and veggies tend to retain more nutrients as they are picked and frozen at the peak of ripeness, whereas fresh fruits and veggies are picked early to allow them to make it from farm to shelf without spoiling.

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Alright, I’m starting C25K Week 2 this morning!! How did my 28 Day Fitness Challenge ladies do this week? What day are you on? Are you feeling better? Seeing any changes?

Bunning Challenge: Week 3 Recap

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Hair

Nothing much to report on the hair front! I pretty much wore a high or mid-height bun all last week. I did try a new shampoo and deep conditioner on wash day. I’d bought the Shea Moisture Yucca & Baobab Thickening Shampoo and Anti-Breakage Mask at a CVS BOGO sale a couple of months ago, if you recall. Well, after a less than illustrious start with the Y&B Thickening Hair Growth Milk, purchased during the same sale (see this post if you missed my review of that), I decided to return the whole line without even trying the shampoo or maks. They were sitting in a bag in my car for the last month waiting for me to make time to make that stop (well, also waiting for me to find the MIA receipt too!). Then, “What happened,” you ask? Well, first, CurlyNikki talked about how awesome the Y & C shampoo is in this post and then, TheManeObjective talked about how amazing the Mask is in this one. *Sigh* What’s a PJ to do? Bring the products back in the house *hangs head in shame.*

So yeah, I used those on wash day. And, they were fine. And, I can use them. But, nothing spectacular happened, so my PJ curiosity is quelled. And, other than applying the “mystery” product to my scalp and learning something about shedding (which will be shared shortly, like in a day or two … just need to write the post), nothing new in the hair category.

But, I’ll share a few more pics of hair goings on throughout last week (besides the ones that you already saw. ;)):

prepoobunThis was a pre-poo bun that I wore to work Monday.

photo 4-7This was my Wednesday and/or Thursday bun, I think! It’s all a blur now!

photo 2Friday night I put my hair into two braids as I debated whether I was pre-pooing. I opted out.

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On Saturday morning, I experimented with making my two ponytails into a crown braid. But, they started
too far apart to make it around my head. I’ll have to try it again with them set close together at my nape.

prepoo_workoutSaturday night, I applied a pre-poo of Vatika Oil mixed with Aubrey GPB. Used my thermal heat wrap for about an hour, then hit the sack. Sunday morning, gave the pre-poo some more heat while I got my kettlebell with Angie Miller on.

Operation “Get Right”

Yup, that is correct. I’m at it again! And Lord knows that I need to be. On Monday, I started the day horribly depressed. I had to return to the house to change out of my “fat-fat” jeans because they were suffocating my thighs and butt. These are the same jeans that were a little snug, but not choking the life out of my pear-shape two to three weeks ago. Forget the fact that I’ve worn the inner thighs of some of my favorite jeans so thin that they’re almost see through and I’m afraid to wear them before I can apply patches for fear that I’ll have a “wardrobe malfunction!!” Can you say, “Disgust?”

Thick_legged_girl_problemshttp://instagram.com/p/SiT9W1s1a3/

Needless to say, I ate properly that day and the rest of the week, with very few exceptions. I even tried to eat halfway decent when I went out for a birthday dinner with my college friends on Saturday night. We went to a soul food restaurant in New Brunswick called Delta’s. Y’all know that there ain’t much healthy about soul food. But, I did the best I could absent eating a plain garden salad and drinking water. I had grilled salmon, sweet potatoes and collard greens (I ordered macaroni and cheese first … and boy did it look good … but I stopped myself and switched to the greens). Ummm … *whispering* I did have a piece of cornbread … it was small though! LOL!

Anywho, so yeah, I’m back to alternating C25K with kettlebell workouts (3 days of each a week). Just gotta keep motivated, because not fitting into my vast wardrobe is NOT cute.

And here are my “health and fitness” pics of the week ;)! LOL!

photo 5-5Like my ladybug earbuds?? 

 I’ve been killing this right now!! This is my first download to in over 2 years! Long story.
Ed_Sheeran
Want to know why? Frickin’ LOVE this song!! And Kiss Me. And U.N.I. and A-Team and …

“And if your DVD breaks today, should have got a VCR, because I never owned a Blu-ray. True say.”

photo 3-8Getting my meals and snacks together.

healthymealMy tips for eating healthy frozen meals? Place the contents on a plate and fill half the plate with frozen veggies
(I always keep broccoli florets, sugar snap snow peas and spinach in the freezer)!!!
1. It looks more appetizing on a real plate (plus I try to avoid cooking in plastic in the microwave).
2. There is so much sauce in these meals, the veggies allow break it up.
3. Get 1-2 servings of vitamin-packed and fibrous veggies!
4. Adding veggies make the meal more filling.

SupplementsStarted to take my vitamins and supplements again too.

I have to say that I’ve been feeling better, happier and more energetic every day that I’ve eaten right and the exercise helps even more!! I also know that my skin and hair, in addition to my physical and mental health, were suffering because of lack of proper nutrition and exercise. Seeing as how we’re on this bunning challenge to gain some new lengths, I know that it is just as important for me to protect my health and well-being as it is to protect my ends if I want to see progress! Also, buns are the perfect, easy peasy lemon squeezey style for exercising!! SCORE! SCORE!

Finally, I’ll leave you with an inspirational and motivational video that I came across this weekend.

via DivaSlimsDown

This video is from 2011. Currently, she’s lost over 180 pounds and weighs 157.2. Let’s just say, I subscribed.

Happy Monday!!

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Okay, my bunning ladies, there were, like, SIXTY of you!! Where you at?!?! How is everything going? Any questions you want to ask? Topics that you’d like addressed? Challenges with bunning? Everything going great and you wish you’d done it sooner ;)?

Final GOC Update: Mershauna (#14)

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by Mershauna of The Dancing Optimist

Man, where has the time gone? Two senior showcases and countless midterms later I am finally able to get a feel of having a life again. Sadly, my busy schedule has limited the frequency of my updates. I am, however, excited to hear about this new bunning challenge. I’m always down for a challenge lol. But, back to the subject at hand, my final update.

Hair
To be honest, I haven’t measured my length since October when I straightened my hair. My hair is past the bottom of my sports bra, so I have been retaining length.

I’ve stuck with twists to protect and stretch my hair. I’ve been wearing mostly buns since I dance everyday, so my hair has been protected. Recently I started experimenting with gels to keep my hair tamed and hopefully cut down on tangles, which cause me the most breakage. I’m really considering Donna Marie’s Miracurl Styling Gelly. All of the reviews I read said it was good, but had too much hold, which sounds perfect for my hair.

Health & Fitness
I have not been able to get to the gym. But when I have free time to workout, I tend to run. It’s not as bad as I use to think. The iPhone app Zombies, Run!, keeps things interesting. I managed to lose a few pounds also. I now weigh 133 pounds, which is a great feat for me. My diet has helped a lot with this. Eating more seems to be boosting my metabolism and the way I feel.

Want to see where it all began with the first GOC? Find Mershauna’s entrée into the first GOC in June 2011 here.

Check out the rest of Mershauna’s GOC – The Sequel posts here:

Initial Submission
April-July Update