Yesterday’s workout: 25 min. lap swim, 45 min. walk, 25 min. circuit training.

There are a handful of health, fitness and running blogs that I read on a regular basis, and this morning I noticed a common theme among a few of my favorites:

“Do what you can with the day that you have.”

Not every day is perfect, and that’s OK.

SkinnyRunner wrote, “Not every day is going to be easy or a ‘good’ eating day or un-stressful, but try to make the best choices that you can today. And then let it be. Let go of the ‘I should be perfect and I’m not’ guilt!

I think I needed to read that this morning. More specifically related to fitness things, but also for life in general. In general, I’m good at not worrying about tomorrow… but I hang on to the guilt or frustration or disappointment fdreamrom all the yesterdays.

This isn’t even about making the best of today. Some days just won’t win the best medal, period. It’s about doing what I can with the time, energy and inspiration I have for this day. And then moving forward.

Another blogger/runner favorite, Dorothy Beal at Miles Posts, wrote: “It’s more than easy to let minor set backs in your fitness or weight shove you down. I’ve let it happen to me way too many times. Hope is not lost. Decide to pick yourself up and start fresh from that day forward. You are worth it.”

I am worth it, and I am making progress, and I am growing. I also know that I am not where I want to be and that progress is slower than I would like. I tend – OK, not tend – I am more of an instant–gratification person. I need to be see growth, I need to have measurable progress. And while fitness goals are pretty easy to measure, there are plenty of things in life that are only slightly more obscure.

I don’t do well with obscure. I like concrete. I like point A and point B. I like lists that I can check off. So I struggle some when those points change, or when the list is added to faster than I can check off. I am a goal–oriented person; the internal tension comes when those goals naturally shift.

“I decided that maybe I was holding on to DREAMS that weren’t meant for me and that by holding on to the wrong DREAM I wasn’t open to the right DREAM,” wrote Beal on Mile Posts.

I’m fairly certain Dorothy stepped inside my head this week.

Finally, Blogilates writer and YouTube host Cassey Ho hit on a similar fitness–journey topic: “Don’t let the definition of your abs dictate your feelings of self-worth. Instead, look deeper. Enjoy the journey to your fitter self… [but]  you got more our of this than just pounds lost. You’ve got skill, you’ve got technique, and you’ve mastered the power of molding your own destiny. Try to find what you want in sculpting a happier YOU. Not just sculpting a more toned bod.”

So my goal for this weekend:

Focus on the progress I’ve made and let go of the “off” days.

Because there has been lots of progress. In my fitness goals, in my relationship, in practical things like wedding planning and getting ready to move. The reality is that this is a very busy, very expensive, very stressful… and very important… summer. Safe to say that it’s normal to feel some extra tension, extra anxiety, and to be extra hard on myself.

I need to be extra careful to let myself off that emotional hook I like to hang on to.

“I do my best. My best is always enough
and it’s always what it needs to be at that moment.”

– Katie at MsFitRunner

Yesterday’s workout: 20 min. lap swim, 30 min. walk, 25 min. circuit training.

Definitely a lighter workout day, but it’s hard to do much high intensity stuff when I’m not supposed to be jumping or pounding on my foot and knee. I keep being on the verge of telling myself it’s ok, but that foot and knee still ache, so I’m sticking to my low–impact work for now.

I’m also feeling really worn out this week, so I suppose it’s good to be taking it easier workout–wise. I fell asleep from 8 to 9 last night, and then decided to stop fighting the sleepiness, got ready for bed, and hit the sack. About 10 hours of sleep in the books. Crazy times.

Unrelated, I decided it’s time for a few random facts about me! Brace yourself…

1. I hate raisins. As in loathe. As in will never ever ever ever eat them, or anything that’s been in a package with them. That, and these are just terrifying:

2. I’m kind of in love with the hip hop, misogynistic, party people everywhere junk on the radio. Seriously, I know it’s junk. I know that. But deep down, there’s a hip hop dance diva just dying to come out. I feel a little bit closer to that alter ego when listening to Flo Rida. Judge away. Also, this graphic exactly explains how I feel during workouts, and the gangsta rap part is right on point.

3. Despite number two, I identify with many feminist ideas. Jon asks me semi regularly how I can listen to the above “music” and not get mad about the lyrics. I don’t have a good answer, so let me know if you figure that one out. I will say, though, that the latest Usher song is a bit too much for me. “Now relax and get on your back if you wanna scream…” aren’t lyrics my inner diva can really get in to. I might marry him if he sang something like this instead:

4. I have an obsession with even numbers. Except for 11, 13, 17 and 27. Those are the only tolerable odd numbers. I feel like this obsession may come out most when I’m eating colored candy. I have to eat it in pairs of the same color. Like, I can’t have a green and a purple skittle. I have to eat two green and then two purple, or all four together. Yes, I know I’m mildly OCD. No, I don’t care.

5. I have a thing for motivational and inspiration quotes. Pinterest will be the death of me, I swear. I have printouts posted all over my apartment and I have an entire bulletin board in my office dedicated to quotes. Like this one:

Or  sometimes I need a little funny. Funny quotes get me through long days. Like this gem:

Thank you Photoshop. Just thank you.

I feel so much better already. That’s all for today! 🙂

Yesterday’s Workout: 30 mins. circuit training.

I have determined that this is the worst week of the year.

This is the week between my birthday and my favorite day of the year, July 4th.

Well, technically there are two weeks between those two important dates, but the week of anything exciting makes the whole week exciting. So this week in between is completely blah and I’m writing this on humpday, so it’s exceptionally blah.

On the bright side, we are having a hotter than hell week, which I love (heat, not hell). Three days pushing 100+ degrees, the rest high 90s. And while the lack of rain this spring has led to horrible fires and plenty of problems around the country, it has also served to keep our suffocating Missouri humidity on the lower end. Tiny shimmer of a silver lining maybe.

And on another bright side, I’m officially half way through my month ban from running! As much as I’m enjoying swimming instead, I really want a good morning jog. Can’t wait until I can alternate jogging and swimming days. Can. Not. Wait.

But I am waiting or I’ll suffer a serious talking to by Jon about needing to take care of by body, let it fully heal, listen to the doctor, etc. He takes care of me, even when I don’t like it.

Fireworks next week will help get me through the end of this no–running purgatory!

Almost two weeks ago now I had my first real bike accident.

To make this seem like the huge and exaggerated deal that it is, I have been riding a bike since I was, like, six. One of my best childhood memories is my dad getting out all of our bikes every spring and getting them all tuned up. And we rode those things all summer long.

In my adult life, I have made it a pretty solid habit to walk/bike/bus as much as I can. Which means I have spent my fair share of time on a bike. I’ve been cut off, nearly side swiped by vehicles, honked at and engine-revved-at by an impatient douche bag at a stop light, had chains fall off, brakes completely fail, and more.

And never had a serious fall.

Perhaps I injured my pride more than anything else. It’s not like I was hit or anything. My foot just casually slipped forward off the pedal as I was accelerating…. and lodged between some spokes in the front tire. Which effectively stopped all forward motion and sent me sailing over the handlebars. At least as far as my body could go with my foot still stuck. It was quite the sight I’m sure!

Complete with some pretty bruises to show for it:

Pardon the quality; I took these with a tablet camera.

I finally went to the doc last week, after getting tired of Jon telling me to, and was told that I shouldn’t run for four weeks. (I’m almost half way there at least!) Lately I’ve been running every morning, biking to work, then doing strength training many evenings – so the last 1.5 weeks of no running and biking have been terrible.

But really this post is about starting to swim as my daily workout.

Finally tired of less activity, I started to swim laps this weekend. My wonderful neighborhood park is complete with running trails (which miss me something awful right now) and a lake with a lap swim area roped off. It’s definitely not the best swimming location, but it works. And man! I forgot how hard swimming is! I swam competitively as a kid, but certainly haven’t done any serious laps in 5564324759 years. Great full–body workout and I get to spend these warm summer mornings in the water.

Pretty darn great.

Also, I’m nearly certain I look like this:

I’ve done a detox several times, and I’m in the middle of one now, so I thought it was worth a post.

To start, let’s look at what a detox, or cleanse, does:

Webster’s Dictionary defines detoxification as “the process of removing toxic substances or qualities.” According to Gaiam Life, a detox “is about resting, cleaning and nourishing the body from the inside out.” Over at, Jennifer Terry wrote that “detoxification programs provide you with the ability to rid your body of toxins, waste and undigested foods.”

Basically, a detox helps eliminate toxins, balances the PH levels, cleans out waste that is “stuck” in your colon and liver, and more. Gaiam Life lists five main benefits you gain from a detox:

1) Resting the organs through fasting;
2) Stimulating the liver to drive toxins from the body;
3) Promoting elimination through the intestines, kidneys and skin;
4) Improving circulation of the blood; and
5) Refueling the body with healthy nutrients.

From personal experience, I’m telling you, my body feels amazing afterward. Its like starting fresh, clean slate, renewed body.

Lemon detox

There are all sorts of detox diets, and many of them are not healthy or safe. Well, in reality, the diets themselves may be fine; it’s the time period you’re on a detox diet that can be unsafe. A popular detox – and my favorite (get to that later) – is the lemon water detox. The problem is that people do just the lemon water for weeks at a time (a friend of a friend did a month!). The standard I find is seven days, but I tend to stick to two or three days max of only the lemon water.

My conclusion, after plenty of online exploration but with no medical expertise to back it up, is that five to seven days is just about right. However, doing only water or lemon water for that full-time isn’t so good. You can do juices (all natural, NOT the sugar, processed crap), smoothies, fresh fruits and veggies, and more.

So! My preferred detox goes something like this:
  • One to two days of lemon water only (recipe below)
  • One to two days adding all-natural juices and smoothies (my favorite below)
  • One to three days adding fresh fruits and veggies
  • Finally, no carb/sugar binging at the end!

Depending on my schedule, I don’t usually get through a full seven days. Three to five is more normal for me. I’ve also read that you should do a full detox at least once a year. Recently I’ve done one about every four months, so it’s probably not good to go a full week anyway. I find that three to five days makes me feel great!

Coworker and I with our lemon waters.

Some final thoughts:

A less intense and long-term method of detoxifying your body is doing a general “cleaning up” of you diet. Eliminate (or at least minimize) things with lots of chemicals and toxins: lose ALL the sodas, stay away from bleached and refined flower products (white bread, rice, crackers, pasta, etc. Basically avoid “white” foods), cut out fake sugars (if you must have sweets, like me, keep it natural), and more. I’ll follow-up with a later post about “clean eating.”

Also, avoid the fad pill detoxes. Everything about that sounds terrible. And finally, a detox or cleanse is not an effective weight loss tool. You will probably lose some weight during, mainly because you’re not taking a ton into your body, but will likely gain that right back when you start eating again. Weight loss is not the goal of a detox; cleaning out your body is the goal.

So those are my (current) two cents on detoxing. Has anyone else ever done a detox? What did you do, and how did you like it? I’m definitely open to feedback and ideas, as I’m still exploring all of this.

Lemon detox recipe:
  • Two tablespoons lemon juice.
  • Two tablespoonspure maple syrup. I’ve also seen honey or Madal Ball tree syrup (a blend of maple and palm tree saps).
  • A dash of Cayenne pepper.
  • Tall glass of water (8-12 ounces). Can be hot or cold, but I usually prefer cold with some ice.

My favorite smoothie recipe:

  • One cup frozen fruit (I like mixed berries)
  • 1/2 to one cup of water (experiment for the consistency you like)
  • One cup spinach
  • Spitz of lemon juice
  • Dash of vanilla
  • Optional: squirt of honey
  • Optional: 1/2 to one tablespoon of natural peanut butter (it’s a strong flavor, so you may want less)
  • Optional: Protein powder – amount of your choice

There are literally tons of great smoothies out there! And I know many people are into home juicing as well. I was gifted a juicer, but I haven’t tried anything yet.