Thursday, December 13, 2012


Up at 6:30am, at the gym by 8am for my last session with Andrew of 2012. It was a great leg workout, only incorporated 2 exercises; squats and lunges but if you go big and hardcore, that's enough!

Workout went like this:
Squats- low as possible
135lbs for 10, 205lbs for 5, 6 and another 5, 155lbs for 8 and 135 again for 10

Walking Lunges- come right down
45lb dumb bells for 20, 50lb dumb bells for 20, 35lb dumb bells for 30.
*50lb dumb bells is another personal best*

Beating personal bests is so motivational. I love it! I have so far completed all my December goals except the hot yoga which I will have to roll over into a January goal, I think.

Staying motivated can be difficult, especially at this time of year, however setting small goals for yourself helps to stay focused and driven. All those small goals eventually come together as a part of your ultimate, bigger goal.

So work is done for 2012. Hooray! Kevin will be done today, we are driving tomorrow morning, hanging out at Kevin's parents on Saturday and flying on Sunday. So excited to go home!

The remainder of the day today will be spent doing laundry, packing and hanging out with my hubby when he gets home.

My back is still so stiff and sore that I think a nice hot bath will be much deserved. I feel pooped but so great. I am generally all about pushing myself, Andrew helps of course, but I have learned that without discipline, consistency, desire and a willingness to get out of ones comfort zone results will never be achieved.

Stay motivated!
Until next time!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Updates and Goals

Good Morning Everyone!

I’m on my last working day for 2012 and I can’t believe how fast another year has gone by. It has been a year filled with many blessings and accomplishments.

4 more sleeps until we leave to go home to see my family for the holidays. Yay!

So what’s new?
I have been thinking a lot about my fitness goals for the New Year and I think I would like to set my sites on completing a Warrior Dash; maybe, as well as competing in a couple shows, completing my personal training certification and trying out some new classes here and there, such as zumba, hot yoga and maybe a spin class.

For anyone interested in the Warrior Dash, here is their website:

I’m sore today; still stiff from my leg work out and Andrew and I trained my back last night; I got up to a 205lb dead lift for 3 reps so my back is stiff as well. Feels great!

Here is what we did:
Dead lifts x 4 sets (135 for 10, 165 for 10, 185 for 5 and 205 for 3)
Feet Elevated inverted body rows x 3 sets of 12-15reps
High mountain Row machine x 3 sets of 10 reps (55lbs each side)
Dumb bell Rows x 3 sets of 12 reps per hand (50lbs and 40lbs)
Straight Arm Pull Down x 3 sets of 12 reps (70lbs)
Additional 20 minutes of interval cardio

Nutrition and diet have been going really well. I have been feeling leaner in the last few days and so today I decided to step on the scale. I am sitting at 127lbs so I am pleased; crossing my fingers that I can keep my will power and motivation in check when I get home to eat clean and not go to crazy with holiday food. I think I’ll be fine.

I have my last appointment with Andrew for 2012 tomorrow morning at 8am. We have had a fabulous year of training and I have achieved some really great progress. Super happy and thankful for Andrew and all his help!

So I think that is it for today. Have a great Wednesday!

Until Next Time.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Squashing my December Goals

Super excited today after last night’s work out session.

I went to the gym with the intention of trying to beat my personal best barbell squat and I did it!!

Last night, I completed 8 reps of a 225lb barbell squat; that’s almost double my body weight. Yay me!

Now I need to practice coming down into the squat position a little further.

Here is the video of both myself and my hubby. He also made the 225lb squat his personal best for 10 reps.

It was a great night at the gym.

*Me comlpeting a 225lb barbell squats*

*Kevin completing 225lb barbell squats*

Our complete workout last night was as follows:
Barbell Squats x 4 sets
10 - 135lbs
10 - 185lbs
10 – 205lbs
8 – 225lbs (me) 10 – 225lbs (Kevin)

Leg Extension superset with lying hamstring curl x 3 sets
10 – 105lbs/ 10- 70lbs
10 – 120lbs/ 10- 70lbs
10 - 135lbs/ 10- 60lbs

Calf Raises
10- 45lbs
10- 55lbs
10- 65lbs

10 minute intervals on the stepper

I love beating personal bests.
That's another one of my December Goals conquered.


Monday, December 10, 2012

Fun Times

This weekend was one filled with fun times and happy moments. I am getting super excited about going home to see my family in 6 more sleeps and I am on day 1 of my 3 remaining working days; then I will be off until January 7th.

So what wonderful fun things did we get up to this weekend?

Friday night we had our annual Christmas party. I enjoyed getting dressed up with my hubby, going out and dancing. The meal was tasty; I had a bite of my hubby’s desert and even a couple glasses of red wine. (I paid for the red wine with a major headache later however; could also be because I was in dehydration mode for my photo shoot the next morning. Yet red wine, is supposed to help with vascularity so that’s why I allowed myself a couple of glasses).

Saturday morning, I had my shoot for 3 hours, got some great shots although I don’t have any of them yet. Rick was great to work with and I enjoyed the shoot overall. Check out his work at northern Exposure Photography-
The dehydration method seemed to work well because I think I was tighter overall and other than the headache, I believe that the red wine did what it was meant to as well.

The rest of the day Saturday was spent doing Christmas cleaning, running errands and then that night my hubby and I had our annual holiday cheat meal. Every year before we leave for Christmas vacation, we indulge in a cheat feast and curl up to watch a Christmas movie with popcorn and a box of chocolates.

This year our meal was Ground Chicken Nachos. Yummy! And we watched the movie ‘A Christmas Carol’ with Jim Carey.

Sunday, I was back to cleaning house, laundry, cooking for the week and my work out. I tried a couple of new recipes which I have already posted; Ground Chicken Breast Meatballs, Baked Oatmeal and then the normal food prep which consisted of shrimp, salads, chicken breast, veggies, omelets and protein muffins.

Workout was a total body variety with 100 push-ups, 100 leg raises, 100 lunges per leg, 100 squats and 100 1-leg hip thrusts.

Overall, this weekend was an enjoyable one. I feel like I accomplished a lot around the house; I still have packing to do but everything else is done.

Main Goal this week: Work out every day until I leave on Friday morning and fit one last work out in on Saturday as well in Innisfail before we fly on Sunday. I have appointments with Andrew on Tuesday and Thursday, tonight Kevin and I are hitting legs and on Wednesday I will likely do shoulders.

Keep Training Hard!
Until Next Time.

Ground Chicken Breast Meatballs

Here is another recipe I tried yesterday and they are delicious.

Ground chicken breast
Green pepper
Green onion

Make into balls, place on cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 20-25mins

*Note: you can use any veggies you like*

Baked Oatmeal

I wanted a change from my ordinary oatmeal so I decided to try this one. Also yummy!

2 cups dry oats
2 cups water
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup slivered almonds
Dash of natural honey
1 banana
1/2 cup berries (I used raspberries)

Combine ingredients and bake at 400 degrees for 20 mins

Friday, December 7, 2012

Pushing Hard

What should we talk about today?

I’m so tired….zzzzzzzzzz!

I have been pushing myself fairly hard at the gym and Andrew pushed me really hard last night with legs too, I thought I was going to puke.

We started with running 7 flights of stairs, 2 at a time for 5 sets. My times for each set ranged from 29.9sec for the first one to 35sec for the last. Not so bad, I don’t think. We continued from there with 3 sets of 20 high bench step-ups each leg, holding 10lb dumb bells, 20 slow squats (5 sec down, 5 sec up), 30 goblet squats and 20 jump squats. Hmmm….I wonder why I’m tired today….lol.

On Wednesday, I did shoulders & abs, here is that workout:
*Tip: Be sure to use enough weight to fatigue those muscles*
Part 1- repeat 3 times
10 dumb bells clean and press each arm
Feet elevated pushups to failure
Bicycle crunch (count to 40)

Part 2- repeat 3 times
10 dumb bells front raise
10 dumb bells lateral raise
20 bench v-sits

Part 3- repeat 3 times
10 standing dumb bell overhead press
20 Swiss ball leg raise
1 minute plank

Tonight there won’t be a workout because we are heading to my company Christmas party. I will have to be overly conscious of what I am putting into my body though because I have my photo shoot with Rick from Northern Exposure Photography on Saturday morning at 9am.

I got my spray tan for it last night, picked out some poses and got my wardrobe put together. I’m excited! Photo shoots makes me feel so great and I have so much fun with them.

Today, I am in dehydration mode, trying to flush out all the water between the skin and muscle. I started to reduce or at least be conscious of my carb intake since Tuesday but I have included some dry carbs today.

It seems my body is back on track now that I have had my period, stepped on the scale and I have only gained 3lbs in the 3 weeks since the show which I am happy about. As I said before some post competition weight gain is normal because no one can sustain the competition diet long term; it isn’t healthy.

Here is a blog that I thought was helpful about photo shoot prep tips as well. Take a look:

I guess the only other news I have is that I will be taking the weekend off work and am hoping to catch up with things around the house, cooking, laundry, decorating for the season and sleep. I have 9 more sleeps before we go home and 7 more sleeps before we leave to visit Kevin’s parents. So I need to start packing as well.

Oh and by the way, I made that chocolate protein peanut butter dish again two nights ago and it was so great. I love it as a treat every once in a while. Find the recipe here:

Until next time

I’ll leave you with this quote: “Proud but never Satisfied”

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Mind vs Body

Love this quote.  "That voice inside your head that says you can't; is a LIAR"


I have been pushing myself so hard for quite sometime now and you have no idea the number of times I have had to tell my inner voice to just SHUT

Fitness, getting out of your comfort is all a mind game. "The mind will quit a thousand times for the body does".

There are things that my body can do, weights I can lift, the amount I can handle in the gym that I never thought possible and there are so many times that my mind takes over and tries to tell me that I can't do it, I can't take it anymore, etc.

The trick is learning how to control that voice, learning how to fight it, take it on and prove it wrong!

Even the other night when I was working to beat my mile run time, that voice kicked in and said "you need to stop, you're tired, you can't do it!" So what did I do? I talked myself through it. I said, Melissa this is one of your December goals, PUSH, you got this, you can do it! And guess what? I did.

So next time that voice tries to take over your mind, remember your body is far stronger than the voice telling you to stop. Push and keep going just a little further, get out of that comfort zone and it'll leave you with the most exhilarating feeling of accomplishment.

Shopping was a Success

As previously mentioned, this past weekend was spent shopping, among other things of course and overall I would say it was a success. It started out to be more than a little frustrating but ended on a good note.

I shopped for myself mostly but picked up a few more Christmas gifts as well, however I was an early Christmas shopper this year so most of my presents are already bought.

The trip was mostly a splurge for me and a needed one because with my drop in size I had very little dress clothes left and what does one wear during the festive season if one has no dressy clothing. Exactly, nothing! So I shopped, spent too much money but got some things that I needed; and okay maybe a few things that I didn't.
I am still shocked by the size I fit, it baffles me!

So back to my purchases, I bought:
A wool jacket
3 pairs of jeans
3 pairs of dress pants
3 shirts
1 dressy sequinned tank
1 sweater
1 funky chain

And here it all is after I got it home.

Still need a few more things to add to my wardrobe, a new black pencil skirt for sure.

I just love shopping!!! but what girl doesn't?

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Keane Classic- A Testimonial

It is with great pride and gratitude that I can say that I took part in the first annual Keane Classic Fitness Competition held in Fort McMurray, Alberta on November 17, 2012. It was my first time competing but it will definitely not be my last.

                                      *Elissa, myself, Naomi and Olivia during my photo shoot
                                           with Tim Rollans at World Gym, Fort McMurray*

The show, the organizers, the other competitors as well as the community support and encouragement were all well above my expectations.

I decided when I first met my trainer, Andrew Bambury, back in October of 2011 that I wanted to compete. It was always my dream, so with Andrew’s help; I worked my butt off to get on that stage. I went through some very physically demanding training, an extremely restricted, natural diet and some emotional turmoil as well but I made it.

                                                     *First Posing Class at YMCA*

I didn’t place in my category but, for me, that doesn’t matter because I think I found my niche…lol and I had such a fun time. Life is all about improving and setting goals anyhow so for my next show the goal is to do better.

More to the point of this blog, the Keane Classic was one of the most exhilarating and amazing experiences of my life. I can say without any hesitation that I enjoyed everything about the show even the months of preparation. It was well organized; the Keane Classic girls (Naomi, Olivia and Elissa) were terrific. They went over and above with their support, encouragement and just overall attitudes.

                                      *The Keane Classic Team: Olivia, Elissa and Naomi*

I hope to see more community participation and involvement in the next one as it is a great event for the Fort McMurray fitness community. If you are thinking of competing it is taking place in October of 2013. My only advice is train hard, eat clean and always have fun with it.

Here are the links to the Keane Classic and Keane2befit facebook pages as well as the Keane2befit website:

A big thank you to the Keane Team for hosting and organizing the event, a shout out to the community for supporting the event and selling out both shows as well as a last big shout out to all the competitors for having the courage to rock the stage!

                                   *Athlete Meeting night before the show at Keyano Theatre*

Looking forward to the next one!

Reaching my Goals

Good Morning!

Happy Hump Day! It’s even hump day for me this week as I am taking this coming weekend off. Yay!

Killer workout last night; my husband and I met at the gym and completed a back workout that I had gotten from Andrew plus some abs. A little stiff today which as you know I love.

The workout was as follows:
Back:  4 x 12 seated cable row

          4 x 12 lat pull down

          3 x 10 trap rows superset with
          3 x 10 barbell upright rows

         3 x 10 supinated barbell row superset with
         3 x 10 pronated barbell row
         3 x 20 pull ups (assisted) superset with 3 x 20 straight arm pull down
Abs: 20 each of decline bench reverse crunch, decline bench regular crunch and hanging knee curls to chest
And then I did it! I completed one of my goals for the month already. Yep, I beat my mile run time and am now at 6 minutes and 50 seconds for a personal best. I will admit I thought I was going to die and throw up…lol or surely that my legs were going to give out but I pushed and persevered and I DID IT!!! Yay me!

Tonight I think will be shoulder night.
Let me see now, what else is new and exciting?
See my previous blog about my gift from my husband. So amazing!!

I found out today that my photo shoot is scheduled for Saturday at 9am. Super Excited about that! A little weary as I am not quite as lean as I was 3 weeks ago but still excited. This one is with a local photographer who wants to increase his fitness portfolio; Northern Exposure Photography by Rick Lynch.
Only 5 more work days left for me after today. 11 more sleeps until I see my family for Christmas. Really getting into the Christmas spirit now as well, I was listening to Christmas carols on the drive into work today and am hoping to make the outside of our house look festive over the weekend .
Here is my favorite Christmas carol: Silver Bells

Until next time!
Have a great day!

Best Gift Ever

I have the greatest husband for many reasons of course but last night he gave me the sweetest gift.

It’s a picture that I hadn’t yet seen of myself from my shoot with Andrew turned into a motivational print. It’s simply fabulous!

Check it out:

I knew there was something suspicious going on when Kevin asked me for Andrew’s email and phone number because he never contacts Andrew himself…lol…I always do.
Those two are such scammers but what a great surprise!

Can you tell I love it?

I have to thank Andrew as well for his part in all this. The picture with the quote was all his doing and it came out amazingly.

Here is the original:

 *Andrew Bambury Photography*

I feel so special and so loved. I knew I had Kevin’s support and encouragement, don’t get me wrong, but I learned last night that he is also very proud of my accomplishments and that truly means so much.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Personal Best- Walking Lunges with 45lb Dumb Bells

Another Personal Best Video.

Walking Lunges with 45lb Dumb Bells. You can tell by the video that it isn't

That's Andrew cheering me on and pushing me

Train Hard and Lift Heavy!

It's an amazing feeling!

Personal Best- 225lb Dead Lift

Here is a video of my 225lb dead lift- Personal Best to date

My form kind of gives out at the end but I got it up there. I love to lift!!

Setting New Goals

Today I am inspired to set new fitness goals for myself.

So I have decided that each month I am going to set out to accomplish something(s) and see if I can get there, push through and kick those things in the face.

So my December Fitness Goals will be as follows:

#1: Enjoy the holiday season, don’t over indulge too often but when I do; don’t feel guilty and paranoid. Instead enjoy it and take comfort that it’s only once in a while and that it’s a well-deserved treat

#2: Try Hot Yoga

#3: Beat my current mile run time of 7 minutes, 2 seconds

#4: Lift heavier and beat some of my personal bests; currently aiming to beat my barbell squat weight which is now at 205lbs

Well there they are for the month of December. I am headed to the gym tonight to start working on them. Tonight will be back and biceps as well as working on beating that run time.

It will be my first day back at the gym in 2 days because I haven’t been feeling well. I finally started my period and yes, as expected, it was a bad one but at least my body should be back on track now.

Today is also my first day back to work for the shift but it’s an exciting one because it is the last shift before Christmas break. 8 more days until but I am also taking the weekend off again so there are really only 6 more working days left for me. 12 more sleeps until my hubby and I fly home to see my family for Christmas. I can’t wait to see my niece opening her gifts on Christmas morning. Yay!!!

My work Christmas party is on Friday and I also have another fitness photo shoot on either Saturday or Sunday as well.

Which reminds me; I got some more pictures back from my shoot with Andrew. Take a look below:

Keep setting new goals for yourself to keep you motivated.
It’s a fun challenge!

Until next time.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Latest Life Updates

It's been a few days since I have updated the events of my life.

So what's new in my world?

Training: Working out is going really well. I am pushing hard, lifting heavier, beating personal bests and feeling great. Had a rest day on Wednesday. Thursday, however I was back at it with Andrew for legs and ow, my legs are still sore 2 days later. Friday, I had another rest day but I walked around the entire West Edmonton mall all day. Today, I worked shoulders and abs and tomorrows plan is a total body workout.

Diet: Keeping it clean and planning ahead. Wednesday, we had another Christmas gathering and being that it was just finger foods, I knew it wouldn't be healthy, so I ate before I left to avoid being hungry and indulging in things that would make me feel gross later. Plus I made sure to drink only water. We also left to go out of town on Thursday and again I prepped snacks for the drive to avoid the gas station junk food along the way. Being that we are away from home, I am working out at a gym here, which is nice, quiet and an overall great facility.

Energy levels and overall health: Energy levels have been high and I am doing well with improvements in lifting, etc. I admit to feeling bloated and gross a lot since the show and I have gained approximately 3-4lbs since, however Andrew tells me not to be paranoid and that a few pounds is normal. I should be proud that I haven't gorged so much and gained double that or more. Apparently a lot of people do post show and a lot of people also avoid going to the gym because they lose that desire after having worked so hard for months. I also haven't had a period since October and therefore I am bloated and that could also be leading to me weighing heavier. Missing periods during competition prep with the heavy training and diet in not uncommon however but I hope I start soon to get my body back on track.

Shopping: I am having a difficult time finding clothes that fit; pants and jeans especially. Why is it that when I was a 6, there always seemed to be sizes 0-2 readily available and yet now that I am that size, there are loads of size 6 available. Grrrrrr! I walked all over the West Edmonton Mall on Friday, only to get 2 pairs of dress pants and 1 pair of jeans. (Sigh!)

Upcoming goals for the week:
* train hard/ heavy
* beat my mile run time
* eat clean
* pack for home for Christmas
* try some new recipes
* prep for photo shoot on December 8 or 9
* stay clean at my Christmas party on December 7

Tuesday, will be the start of my last shift before Christmas break and then I am off until January 7th. I am also taking Saturday and Sunday off next weekend. I am happy to be going home for Christmas this year with my hubby to see my family. Hoping to be able to stay mostly clean when I go home and to hit the gym a few times while I am there.

Until next time, keep training and eat clean!

Training to Relieve Stress

How many of you have used training as a form of stress relief or have had moments where you are just so pissed that all you want to do is head to the gym and lift?

Personally, I find training the best form of stress relief, especially lifting and lifting heavy.

You must all be wondering by now where I am going with this blog and what happened to create it. Well without going into too much detail, I'll give you two words to sum it all up.....EX-WIFE!!
Enough said! Anyone who has one of these in their lives needs no more explanation to understand my frustration.

In one respect, even talking about it, would almost make it seem as though she is winning, however little does she know that the more she pisses me off, the more I push and the more drive and determination I have at the gym. So, in the long run, yes, she irritates me but the frustration gives me a desire to pump it out, making me feel better and fitter for both myself and my husband. All the better for me so......Yay Me!

My point with this post; is not to explain how frustratingly annoying selfish ex-wives can be.  The point, however, is to explain how great training can be as a method of stress relief.

Remember this; instead of over-eating, drinking or whatever other unhealthy habit and excuse you use to avoid training when you have a bad day; get to the gym, train hard, sweat and push all that negative energy out. I'll guarantee that you feel better afterwards!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Lifting Heavier and Running Faster

Last night was another night of personal bests. It was welcoming, encouraging and made me feel much better, after having not been feeling the best yesterday.

I am having issues of feeling really bloated and blah; although from what I have been reading this is normal post competition. It is really just your bodies’ reaction to the introduction of regular foods back into your diet and eating them more consistently.

So back to the personal bests, I trained my back last night (one of my favorite things to train) and I pushed myself to lift heavier.

My routine was as follows:
*5 sets of unassisted chin-ups (going to failure on each set); I managed 20 total
*3 sets of wide grip pull down superset with straight arm pull down; I managed 120lbs on the wide grip and 80lbs on the straight arm
*3 sets of dumb bell bent over rows; I managed 50lbs each arm
*3 sets of bent over barbell overs; I managed 90lbs

Next I completed my mile run and again beat my best time by 7 seconds; hey, it’s still improvement. My time last night was 7 minutes, 2 seconds. I got my speed on the treadmill up to 10mph; in order to beat this time, I need to start increasing my speed faster. Goal is still to get to Andrew’s record of a 6 minute mile. I am trying to give him a run for his money…lol.

Today is my last day of shift! After today, I am off for 5 days and we are heading out of town. I plan to finish up some Christmas shopping and shop for clothes for myself as well. I need pants and jeans very badly.

Tonight will be a rest night because we have another Christmas get together, I will be staying completely clean for this one however as there is no supper; so I’ll eat before I go and just drink water while there. It’s nice to get out, socialize and I love to dress up as well.

No new changes or news on the diet front. Still staying clean and feeling fit; I am taking my time introducing things back into my diet. Right now I am having a great time with my morning oatmeal, love having my protein shakes back, some pb, my Greek yogurt with berries and a steak here and there.

I am having my first training session in a week with Andrew tomorrow and we are going to work legs. I slowed down a bit on appointments with Andrew since the show, mainly for budget reasons, with it being so close to Christmas. In the New Year, we will get back to our normal routine and at least a couple of appointments a week.
I got back some of my stage shots from Photographer Tim Rollans; I’ll share some of them with you below.

Have a great day!
Until next time!


Squatting 205lbs

This is the first video I have shared of myself but here I am squatting 205lbs back on July 25th, 2012. My bum was so sore the next

Hoping to beat this very soon. Go Big or Go Home!!!

Push hard, Lift Heavy and Get out of your Comfort Zone!!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


I thought it would be a good idea to share some before and after photos.

Here I am February 2010 to November 2012.

There was a lot of sweat and hard work to get here but so worth it.


Is there any greater reward then the feeling you get after having accomplished something that you have put your mind, focus and energy into for so long?

This past competition (my first) was such an amazing experience. It taught me so much about myself and about what I can do when I put my mind to it.

I was thinking last night about how happy, how proud and how appreciative I am, to have walked into World Gym, Fort McMurray a little over a year ago with the intent of getting my body competition ready and having reached that goal.

I walked in there that first night, nervous; not knowing what to expect from Andrew, how the meeting would go, or if I would survive his work out…lol, but I knew it was time for a change and time to finally figure out how to make one of my dreams a reality.

At that time I was 156lbs and between a size 6-8 and now I am 125lbs and a size 0. Wow! I lift heavy, heavier than I ever thought I could; I mean my personal best squat is 205lbs, my deadlift 225lbs and so on. I can do probably 7-8 good chin-ups in a row. It all seems incredible to me how far I have come.

I have met some new, fantastic, like-minded people along the way; I have gained confidence, knowledge and a true passion for the healthy, clean, natural lifestyle.

And I think that I have also become a happier version of myself. How does that quote go; “you have to make yourself happy first; before you can make others happy”! Not that I was miserable before, but now I feel much more positive.

I am currently the happiest, fittest, healthiest version of myself. I have so much energy, and I only want to get better. So how will I do that? By continuously setting new goals and kicking them in the face; new competitions, beating personal bests, trying new things, completing my personal training certification, taking part in photo shoots, etc.

It is something I am so passionate about. When people ask me about my journey; they always say, I couldn’t do it; I don’t have the willpower for that. Funny thing is you have the willpower and drive inside you; you just have to want it bad enough. For me, it is something I want and definitely something I enjoy!

“One person with passion is better than forty people merely interested." — E. M. Forster.

Burpee Push-up Challenge

Burpee Push-up Challenge

Try this 10 minute challenge and let me know how you do.

Set a timer to count down for 10 minutes and try to complete as many burpee push-ups as possible within that time.

I did this the other day and got 67 total

*Remember this one is a burpee push-up combo*

Burpees are a great total body workout. Try this out and don’t forget to let me know your score.

How to perform burpee push-ups:

Start from a standing position, lowering down into a squat with hands on the floor in front of you
Kick feet back into push-up position

Complete push-up
Immediately return to squat position
Stand and jump up as high as possible

Preparation is Key

I haven't written anything in a few days because I have been busy with a few things.

I took the day off of work on Sunday, had some errands to run, training to do plus cooking, cleaning and laundry.

Preparation of food for the week went great, is so convenient and makes it much easier to stay on track. It took me about 2-3 hours and I cooked Chicken breast, ground chicken breast burgers, tilapia, asparagus, salads, zucchini and rice.

Training on Sunday, consisted of my burpee challenge (only push-up burpees this time) for 10 minutes. I got 67 plus I completed 10 sets of running stairs and 100 squats.

Due to the overindulgence the night before at my birthday supper, I limited my carb intake on Sunday to only veggies. Sunday night we went to Kevin’s Christmas party and had a great time, danced a bit and I managed to stay clean; other than one glass of wine.

Yesterday I was off to Calgary for work, only a day trip, but I still needed to be prepared and conscious of my diet plan. So I completed all of my prep and planning on Sunday.

It is so very important to be prepared, especially when travelling as there are not always that many healthy options on the go.

So how does one stay on track while away from home?

Prepare, pack your own, always have small, healthy snacks on hand and if you get caught with nothing always go with the healthiest options available.

So for me, on Sunday I developed a plan. How many times would I have to eat while away? What foods would I bring to stay within my allowable calories? Would I get up early enough to fit breakfast in before I left? And so on.

Here is what I did.  Being that as a general rule I eat every 2-3 hours, I knew that I would need about 3-4 small meals while away. I got up early enough to make and drink a quick protein shake, I put all my ingredients for oatmeal together the night before (you can get hot water anywhere), I pre-cut and bagged some veggies for snacks, took a protein bar and 1 piece of fruit.

Also being that I had been to Calgary before for work, I knew that there was a place nearby that I could get a quick healthy salad. We went to a salad bar where you can make your own and I just picked what I knew was in my limits, added some protein like chicken and a hardboiled egg with no dressing. This plan had me staying on track all day and I was full.

After flying back home, Kevin met me at the gym. I had pre-packed my bag the night before; we did a fabulous arm & abs workout as well as some cardio. It was a great night for beating personal bests. I got up to 195lbs on the seated triceps press down machine, I completed 3 sets of 10 unassisted triceps dips with 25lbs hanging from me and I BEAT my mile run time again; I am now up to 7 minutes, 9 seconds. Woot, Woot!

Remember when trying to reach goals and stay on track, preparation is the key, pushing yourself is also important as well as reminding yourself how great it feels to be healthy and fit.

Until next time.

Overindulging then feeling Guilty

I hate to admit it but I still feel paranoid and guilty every time I overindulge. I mean my body feels gross after, horrible in fact but do I really need to beat myself up over it?

I'll explain. Saturday night there was a change in plans and instead of heading to the gym, Kevin decided to take me out for that birthday supper. You know the one we missed on the actual day because I was in full competition mode. We had a great time, enjoyed each other's company and I enjoyed my meal and dessert.

*Chocolate Explosion dessert from Boston Pizza*

However, all the while I was thinking I shouldn't be eating this, I shouldn't have dessert and so on. So why is it that I still beat myself up, even after all that I have accomplished. I mean I KNOW for a fact that a little treat once in awhile is not going to do me any harm, so why? Is there really any need for me to be so paranoid?

I think that there are several reasons why I do this to myself:
1. I am scared that I will end up where I started and all this hard work will be wasted
2. I am scared because I don't know if I will be able to maintain and right now we are just playing around with calories, etc to see what works best for me
3. My body is strange and reacts differently sometimes than Andrew and I expect it to

But I also believe that I have to teach myself not to. I have to teach myself to enjoy those little indulgences as much as I enjoy my healthy carbs because really I don't allow myself those so called 'bad' things very often at all.

I guess the point of this blog is to both help me get past my fear and guilt of enjoying a little indulgence once in awhile and to help me learn to enjoy those times in life when I allow myself the luxury of a little treat. I DO NOT need to beat myself up over it.

After all, it's good for me to enjoy things like dessert once in awhile; especially for my birthday.

So make sure, you allow yourself treats from time to time and make sure you enjoy them. Don't spend any time after beating yourself up; just get back on track and move on; knowing that you enjoyed an incredible dessert and had fun doing so.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Photo Shoot with Tim Rollans

Last night I received my first picture of the photo shoot I had with Tim Rollans the day before the competition. I love the picture. I look

Check out Tim's work at

Here is my picture, what do you think?

Believe in yourself

I came across this video yesterday and wow, is it ever inspirational. This guy never gave up and he accomplished so much. It's a powerful story!

It is important to always have faith and to believe in ourselves. Stay positive and focused and never give up. "Fall 7 times, get up 8". This is true for all instances in life, not just fitness and health, and it made me think of how many times during my competition training that I thought I would never get through it. However, just with a change to a more positive attitude and focus, I pulled through and rocked it.

Check out the video and remember, Never give up and Always Believe in yourself!

I'll leave you with this.

Until next time.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Vote for Me--Contest

I entered my picture into a contest with a local makeup artist. The winner receives a photo shoot and make up plus will be the face of her new business cards and advertisements.
To vote all you have to do is click on the facebook link below, like my picture and like her page.
Voting will go until December 1st at 12:00am
Thanks for your support!

Ground Chicken Burgers

My husband and I love these and I usually cook up a big batch and either freeze them or keep them in the fridge to take for lunch. I don't have a bun with mine very often and they are good either way.

1pkg ground chicken breast
Sprinkle of feta cheese
Egg whites
Green Onion
green pepper
Chili pepper (optional)
Clove of garlic
4 tbsp whole wheat bread crumbs (optional)

Mix everything together in a bowl, form into burgers and cook. Good in the oven or grilled on the BBQ.

I do add the chili pepper for that extra kick but I don’t add the bread crumbs which makes them a little more difficult to keep from falling apart but it still works.

These are yummy!

The Power of Stretching

Yoga aimed to unite the mind, body and spirit!

I love stretching and I love yoga.


Stretching helps elongate muscles, improves flexibility, performance, posture and just feels really good.

How many people out there practice Yoga?

Me, I practice Yoga on my own time and although I have done classes, these days I just don’t have the time. So a couple of times a week, I will go into a quiet room in my house and practice some yoga poses at home. I enjoy this for the relaxation and stress relief as well as to reduce some of that muscle soreness that comes from lifting heavy at the gym. I probably don’t do it as often as I should, finding the time is difficult, but I do try and stay somewhat flexible and I enjoy it.

Typically, I shut off the world, put on some light or instrumental music, get in the zone and stretch. With each stretch I try to go a little further than the first time to increase my flexibility. My favorite though is practicing outside in the summer time or on the beach while on vacation; I just grab my mat and go.

                                       *cruise stop in Great Stirrup Quay-Bahamas in 2010*
                                                   My body has transformed since then!

I love trying new stretches or setting goals to learn new yoga poses. I set a goal about a year ago to learn how to complete this one and voila, I did it.

One thing that I am also interested in is 'Hot Yoga', I haven't tried it yet.

Has anyone? What did you think?