Tag Archives: 40before40s

#18 Weigh the Weight Listed On My Driver’s License

17 Sep

This is a goal that I wasn’t sure was even possible. I have never updated my driver’s license and thus it’s set at the weight I was in high school….a time when you can eat whatever you want and not gain a pound.

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After getting engaged at the end of September 2017, I knew I wanted to lose some weight and get toned for the wedding. The dreary San Francisco weather had gotten me accustomed to comfort food and cozy sweaters. And once we decided on a destination wedding (read: spending time with all our friends and family in a bikini 👙) I was dead set on getting abs. So at the start of the year, I set a wedding resolution, not a New Year’s resolution because statistically those don’t typically work, to get into shape.

My whole life I have never really cared about weight per say. The numbers on the scale can make you feel really bad about yourself when you actually look great. And we all know that muscle weighs more than fat, so if you’re strong, your weight won’t necessarily be as low as you might like. All that aside though, I had set this goal on my list and I figured this was the most likely time to check it off. I made sure to keep my ultimate goal in mind though because while it would be great to accomplish the weight loss, I wanted to be strong, not skinny.

Generally, I’m a pretty motivated person. If I set an absolute like, “I’m not eating any sweets,” I’m pretty good at sticking to it. I know myself well enough to know that I need these absolutes in the beginning to get myself on the right track. So that’s where I started…no sweets and cook dinner at home at least three times per week. (Thankfully I live with a very talented chef, so the cooking part wasn’t as challenging as it could have been.) Then we added in a couple of other things like making our own pizzas on a healthy crust instead of eating out and, probably the most difficult one for me, limiting tortilla chips (my fav!).

I also started bumping up my workout routine, but I approached it in a different way than I had in the past. I tried everything and never did the same thing in one week. I did Pilates, yoga, Mychael’s Fit Phases program, Barry’s Bootcamp, Orangetheory, Body by Simone, circuit workouts in Mychael’s gym, running, swimming, spinning, dance classes…you name it. It was really fun switching things up so much and trying new things. I planned my workouts for the week on Sunday, but kept things flexible and just did whatever I was feeling that day.

The food part is much more difficult for me in general. If I could work out twice per day and live on pizza and tortilla chips, I’d be in heaven. Unfortunately though, that’s not the way it works. So I started food logging. It was surprising to see how many calories were in some of my favorite foods. After logging all the separate ingredients in one of my go-to take-out salads, I might as well have just had pizza. It was very eye opening and forced me to make some additional changes to my diet.

I actually started logging everything in the Fitbit app. I pretty much lived by it. (Full disclosure, I work at Fitbit, but aside from having access to Fitbit trackers, there really isn’t any advantage there.) I made sure to drink at least 100 ounces of water per day; tried REALLY hard to get at least 7 hours of sleep each night; almost always got my 10,000 daily steps; and kept track of my exercise. This was all gradual though. I didn’t just jump right into all these big changes, but worked my way up to hitting all these goals.

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By food logging in the app and using the connected scale (Fitbit Aria 2), I was able to make sure I was staying at a calorie deficit. That’s not to say I didn’t have cheat days. I allowed myself to indulge on special occasions…I had Susie Cakes at my bridal shower, margaritas at my bachelorette, Mexican food on my birthday, etc. I didn’t take anything to a crazy extreme and allowed myself to take a break, but then jumped right back into my healthy habits afterwards. Overall I did more good than bad. By giving myself plenty of time to reach my goal, I had room for cheat days, which is a much more realistic and sustainable way to approach weight loss and fitness.

In the beginning it was really difficult. I’m sure there were changes happening on the inside, but I wasn’t seeing the immediate results I was hoping for. What the heck?! At the encouragement of my motivating and super cute trainer, I kept at it. And eventually, I started to see results. I very clearly remember the first time I saw my abs starting to come out. 💪

I weighed myself every Friday morning for consistency and started to see the numbers slowly go down. And on Friday, September 14, I hit my goal! 120 pounds!

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Weight

Scale image is from Friday, Sept. 14. I weighed myself again on the 17th and it went down a little bit, but I didn’t have my phone handy to get another pic, hence the slight discrepancy.

So, I’m sorry to say that there’s no trick, no secret pill, no special diet that got me here. The “trick” is everything you already know – move every day, don’t eat crap, drink water and get sleep. And while it took some time to adjust, now it’s just a new lifestyle…one that is sustainable and not a crash wedding diet.

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I’m really proud of all the work I put in and the progress I made. Mexico here I come!

Strong

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#38 Take an epic road trip

16 Sep

Being in a relationship means you have to make some compromises, and this becomes very apparent during the holidays. When I was single, I went home for every major holiday, but now with Mychael in the picture, he wants to spend some of them with his family as well…imagine that! So now it’s a trade-off and we spent Christmas 2017 in Indiana. We had a great time with his daughter and parents, and we even got some snow, which you don’t see in Sacramento.

Mychael, being the money-conscious adventurer he is, typically drives home for the holidays. He saves tons of money on flights and gets to stop and see new things on his way to Indiana. I’m usually more of a “let’s just get there” sort of girl, so I typically fly, but this last year my curiosity got to me and I decided to join Mychael for an epic road trip from Indiana to California.

I’d always loved the idea of a road trip, but that just wasn’t the way my family typically travelled. Fortunately, I had a pro taking me out on the road for this adventure.

The first day we drove and drove and drove. Most of the places we wanted to stop were a little further along the route, so we tried to knock out as many miles as possible that first day. We did make one pretty awesome stop at the largest truck stop in the world. It was actually impressive….they had everything, a doctor, a food court, and even a big rig INSIDE the building.

That day we made it all the way to Lincoln, Nebraska, but arrived in the middle of a snowstorm. We were driving at the same speed I run so we decided to call it a night and stay there. We found a cute restaurant for dinner and a nice little motel and once we weren’t driving in it we could appreciate how pretty the snow was.

The next day we got up early and hit the road for Wyoming. Neither of us had spent much time there, so we weren’t really sure what to expect. IMG_3222

We didn’t have time to go north to Jackson, so we ended up at the Terry Bison Ranch in Cheyenne. This place was so interesting. It felt a bit like a dude ranch mixed with a zoo of exotic animals. Not only did they have bison, but they also had camels, emus, lamas and ostriches, among other things. We rode a stuffed buffalo and jackalope, posed for photos in front of the western façade, met some animals and got some sweet t-shirts. We even saw a wedding. It was such a unique, fun stop.

Following that, we got back on the road and spent the night just outside Salt Lake City, Utah.

The next morning we were on a mission to find hot springs. Mychael is a hot springs expert so he already had one all planned out for us – Fifth Water Hot Springs. We could drive to the parking lot outside the hiking trail, hike two miles and get to a really beautiful springs. Well, when we arrived, part of the road was closed due to the snow, but we just went for it anyway…ended up being a six-mile hike each way. We didn’t really have the right shoes for such a long snow hike, and Mychael was of course in shorts, but we made it work.

And man, was it worth it. The hot springs were incredible. They were bright teal and turquoise and looked almost fake against the bright white snow. There were a surprising amount of people up there too, given how far the hike was. But hey, we all got our exercise for the day. We hung out for a while and made some new friends, then decided to make the trek back.

Following that, we had to make up some time so we did another long afternoon of driving to Nevada. That night we stayed at the scariest hotel I’ve ever been to in Wells. To be fair, it’s a really small town and there just aren’t a lot of options, but this was a run-down hotel that I’m pretty sure was used in a horror movie. We were so tired though that we just didn’t think about it and went to sleep.

The next morning we drove just out of town to the 12-Mile Hot Springs. This place was so cool that it was worth the creepy hotel stay. We drove down a deserted road, past a ghost town, out into the middle of nowhere.

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At one point the road got so bad that we couldn’t drive anymore, so we parked our car just randomly in the middle of a field and covered the rest on foot (Mychael, still in shorts of course).

The hike was nothing compared to the other day and when we got to the hot spring, there were only two people there who were leaving. This one was so different than what we had seen the day prior. It was in beautiful valley with nothing else around. We ended up having the springs all to ourselves for quite a while until we decided to get back on the road.

 

From there, we wrapped up our trip with a stop by my parents’ house in Sacramento to celebrate my dad’s birthday/New Year’s Eve.

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We had the best time on our road trip. Even the time we spent just driving in the car was a blast. Together, we have so much fun no matter what we’re doing. And I’m sold on this road trip thing. Can’t wait for the next one!

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BONUS–Sleep in a Treehouse

25 Feb

I’m big on surprises. I’m not sure who enjoys them more, the person planning the surprise or the person being surprised. It’s fun for everyone!

For Mychael’s 39th birthday I wanted to do something fun; something he would never think of, but would never forget.

Mychael is really outdoorsy and he’s slowly converting me, but I’ve always been more of a hotel & spa day sort of girl. It was his day though, so I tried to come up with something that was more up his alley. I remembered hearing about these cool yurts in Big Sur, so I started doing some research and found that the Treebones Resort had yurts, but also a really unique treehouse. It was the perfect once-in-a-lifetime surprise I was looking for!

Fortunately I’m a crazy planner because this place books up FAST! I booked in February for our stay in September and was lucky to secure Mychael’s birthday weekend in the treehouse.

The week of his birthday I left a poem clue and a small gift behind for him each day when I went to work:

  • Monday – Small potted tree
  • Tuesday – Superman robe & slippers
  • Wednesday – Big Sur photography book
  • Thursday – Travel toiletries

On Friday of his birthday weekend we started our journey down to Big Sur, making a stop at an amazing restaurant called Nepenthe. The restaurant has been open for 69 years and sits perched on a cliff, providing a picturesque ocean backdrop for lunch and the perfect start to our weekend.

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Following lunch, we continued down the road to Treebones.

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The resort is comprised of a bunch of campsites, some yurts, the treehouse and the nest, a very appropriately named human-sized bird’s nest, as well as two restaurants. We checked in and immediately went to check out our sweet weekend home, situated at the edge of the resort with breathtaking views.

We crossed the suspension bridge and settled into the treehouse.

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We spent the weekend relaxing, checking out the elephant seals in San Simeon, kayaking, walking down the beach, hiking to waterfalls and taking tons of pictures.

We had the best time relaxing and spending time together. It was the perfect weekend birthday celebration. If you ever have the opportunity to stay in a treehouse, I highly recommend it!

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#4 In a Nutshell – The Cycle Project’s First News Article

7 Jul

The Cycle Project's First News Article

Check out this article I coordinated for our team in the Santa Monica Mirror. It took some serious work, but I’m glad I could help promote the mission of our team. 🙂

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