Leslie Sansone’s Thanksgiving Walk Challenge

Leslie Sansone’s Walk at Home workout videos have been a favorite of mine since I discovered them in 2009. They have been a great tool in helping me lose weight this time around as well since they are low impact and allow me to exercise indoors when I need to. I started using her DVDs by checking them out from my local library and alternating them every two weeks until I was finally able to buy my own. At that point I bought two of her DVDs and also ended up finding the one of hers that I had originally used (it’s funny how that works out huh?).

I just love her workouts because she is like a cheerleader, but not annoying about it. I love her encouraging words while doing the workouts in my living room and often will find myself answering or responding to her while I’m exercising! I just love her energy and enthusiasm! It’s clear she loves what she’s doing and she loves helping whoever is using her videos. I also really like how she involves the women she has in her videos and chats with them as they’re exercising. It makes me feel like it’s all some big group and we’re all working together.

Well, recently I saw someone posting about her walk challenge on another website and it got me curious. Why hadn’t I thought to like her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter before? So I did just that and am inspired that she is still very actively involved with her fans and following! This challenge is a great example of that and you can walk outside, indoors, wherever to get your walking in!

Here is one of her Tweets from today regarding the challenge:

Leslie is truly inspiring in more ways than one. She has made fitness and healthy living a way of life for herself and is spreading this love to others! If you’ve never checked out one of her videos, I encourage you to check out a video on YouTube if you can find one. Some of them get deleted quite often, but if you try it and like it you can always buy a DVD on Amazon or eBay for a low price!

If you would also like to follow Leslie Sansone on her pages, here is her Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LeslieSansone and here is her Twitter: https://twitter.com/LeslieWalks. Also just to be thorough, if you want to check out her actual website, you can find that here: http://www.walkathome.com/.

I hope you like her workouts (and her) as much as I do. I truly don’t know where I would be without her workout videos helping me get started and continue on my weight loss journey. For comparison, I have tried other walking videos and also regularly use the On Demand walking videos from XFINITY but I still prefer Leslie’s over all else and so do many other people!

~Bonnie~

Eventually Something Will Give

This is a great message!

Dream Big, Dream Often

Eventually something will give.  I often think about this when I see a car that is obviously being neglected.  Smoking out the tail pipe, bald tires and in need of a tune up.  Why does the owner continue to drive their car into the ground?  Do they realize that the short-term cost of maintenance far outweighs the devastation of long-term neglect?  Also, driving the car in a neglected state can put their life and families’ lives in danger.

credit: genius.com credit: genius.com

Obviously they have never considered these dangers, because it makes no sense to be aware of the danger, yet continue to subject their families to the risk.

And so it is with our health.  We only have one body in which we live.  I am not saying to completely eliminate donuts and lattes.  After all I have been very honest about my love affair with Burger King.  What I am saying is…

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Equilibrium

This is another great message. We all need to take time to practice self-love and caring for ourselves is an important way to do this. In all we do for others, it’s important to put ourselves first so that we CAN help others and accomplish all of our own goals.

honeyjoys

Recognising when I need self love. 

I have lost count of the number of times I have found myself bent over a snoring child, in the darkness of a quiet bedroom, showering her face with butterfly kisses while tears stream down my face. My heart filled with regret after a day that I have been overly negative or critical; nagged, berated and yelled too much.  I make heartfelt promises to be a better mom tomorrow and beg for her understanding and forgiveness. My child stirs. I accept this as an acknowledgement that she has heard my confession. I sit on the floor, in silence, as the weight of guilt lifts gradually from my aching shoulders. Eventually I get up, walk away slowly and close the door behind me, gently.

I don’t always have great days. It is especially on these exhausted evenings that I am reminded about balancing my passion with…

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Hope

Hope, such a simple yet powerful word with so many meanings to different people. It’s so important to have hope in our lives. If we didn’t have any hope for the future, what would we be living in the present for?

When I think of this word, I think of positivity and future. Sometimes I am just plain tired and that plays with my hope a bit but I manage to keep my hope high somehow by reminding myself that what I am feeling in the moment is only temporary… Tomorrow is a new and fresh day, full of possibilities and I can shape it in any way I feel like.

Hope pushes me to move forward. Hope gives me a reason to move forward. Whenever things aren’t going according to plan, I shift focus and remember that if I keep trying hard and doing my best, I will get where I want to go… or somewhere even better! That hope keeps me alive and happy in the moment.

In my opinion, it’s ideal to live in the present while looking to the future at the same time… and hope gives me the chance to practice this daily. I have hope that the future that it holds amazing things for me. I am confident in myself to make things happen, but I also know that wherever life takes me is where I’m meant to be. So I will just keep being me, keep holding onto hope for the future, and stay as positive as I can no matter what life throws at me.

What does the word hope conjure up in your mind? What do you have hope for?

~Bonnie~

Be the Best You Fitness Challenge

Be the Best You Fitness Challenge #BTBYfitnesschallenge
Be the Best You Fitness Challenge
#BTBYfitnesschallenge
Hey everyone, I’m starting a challenge with you all… Use the tag: #BTBYfitnesschallenge if you want to participate. You can tag on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

The challenge is pretty simple:

  1. For the rest of the month we will challenge ourselves to meet our exercise goals. We all have different ones so I’m going to challenge you to create one you can stick with!
  2. Set an exercise goal for yourself (public or private) for how many minutes each day, or whatever your goal is for your exercise.
  3. Use the hashtag above to post to social media.
  4. Tell us whether you met your goal or not, in any shape or form you feel like! You can say exactly what you did such as how many minutes and/or what type of exercise you did. You can also simply say that your goal was met.
  5. You can also post pictures or screenshots of your exercise! Sometimes that makes it more fun! (For example, I might personally do screenshots of my Fitbit stats).

I will also be posting for my own goals as well as checking in on yours on a regular basis to see how everyone’s doing. Have fun with it. Challenge yourself and push to meet your goals.

Feel free to tag my page in your posts as well, but only if you want to. As long as you’re using the hashtag above, we can all see how each other is doing!

Remember that you are strong and powerful, and you can conquer your goals!
My goals: 7500 steps and 30 min exercise minimum each day except for rest days.

~Bonnie~

10 Things I Like (about Healthy Living)

10 things I like (about healthy living):

  1. Exercise brings structure to my day, and I love planning my day around my exercise to make it a priority.
  2. Healthier skin and nails.
  3. Feeling more hydrated which in turn flows into other areas of health as well!
  4. Enjoying life more because my mind is clearer and I can truly appreciate the beauty surrounding me!
  5. While learning how to live a healthier life, I’ve learned so much about myself and life in general.
  6. Succeeding at healthy living (and weight loss) has seriously boosted my confidence in myself and my abilities.
  7. Doing something this hard proves to me that I am capable of anything I set my mind to!
  8. Better sleep… most of the time.
  9. Satisfaction and fulfillment, that my life is on the right track with a healthier basis!
  10. Weight loss, of course. That’s what I started this for but have learned to view it more as a healthy lifestyle!

~Bonnie~

Going Back to Basics

You know when you’re going along and things are smooth sailing, but then you hit a big bump in the road and everything goes haywire? Yeah, we all know how that goes!

Going back to basics

Sometimes it is completely necessary to take a step back and view the big picture again. We continuously need to reevaluate our goals in order to move forward. Sometimes it is also necessary to go back to the beginning, or another time when we were more successful before we hit a bump. Those times are when you try to pick up where you left off and move forward at the same rate but your body and mind fight you every step of the way. You’re not going to be successful if your mind is standing in your way or if you go too hard, too fast.

This is why we take a step back, start over, or simply go back to basics by employing the strategies and habits that helped us in the beginning. When were you the most successful with your weight loss, fitness, or healthy eating? What were you doing then? Take what you were doing and start doing it again now. You may have way more knowledge and abilities now, but if you take a step back it can help tremendously!

It kind of goes along with that saying, “Never forget where you came from.” We have to remember where we started when we’re losing weight and improving our health. Sometimes we just get so caught up in what we’re doing that we forget. The struggle is so all-consuming that we have tunnel vision, or we’re so wrapped up in the results that we forget that we need to focus on the other important stuff as well.


Now I’m going to share with you a bit about my life lately, because I have come to the point where I need to heed this advice. It is a little disappointing but exciting at the same time because I know it worked for me in the past.

October was a bad month for me. Sure, it got off to a great start with my 27th birthday and an absolutely wonderful one at that, but it went downhill fast from there.

The night before my birthday I started feeling sick, like sneezy and congested sick. Still my birthday itself was awesome, I spoiled myself and let myself eat basically what I wanted, and I was also spoiled by others. I received quite a few gifts, more than I had on my birthday in a long time!

However, letting myself basically eat what I wanted on my birthday and being sick at the same time resulted in me having bad cravings for carbs in the following days. It took me quite a while to get back to normal. Then I kind of took a lax approach with my eating the week after that because I was still sick and stressed out, and I didn’t want worrying about my eating to add to my stress.

The following week, just when I was getting back on track and had 3 good days under my belt, my uncle died unexpectedly and that hit me really hard. I wasn’t super close but he had always been such a positive role model in my life and it hurt so bad that he was gone. I let myself eat more again because I still didn’t want to add to my stress. It took a good week as well as a visit with my therapist to return to some sort of normalcy, emotions wise.

Now it’s been about five days since I started feeling more positive again. I have had two days where I went over my calories, but not by much. I have had three days where I was within range. I’m doing my best to stay on track and refocus. I also need to baby step back into working out and building muscle consistently again… because due a whole month of no strength training, and not much cardio during that time either, I have lost a majority of the muscle I worked so hard to gain.

So my goals for November:

  • Go back to what worked for me in the beginning with my eating: When I first started out, I made it a goal to be in my calorie range 5 days a week minimum, with two days a week where I could go over my calories by 300-500. This time I will keep it to 300 or less over my calories on those two days but the principle is the same… if I have those days to look forward to, eating within my range the other five will be easier and less overwhelming. It worked well for me before so I know it will help me now.
  • Baby steps to exercise and build muscle again: My plan is to take it easy on the elliptical at the gym, start slow with my half marathon training plan that I set up for myself, and to continue walking or doing walking videos but taking it easy with those too.
  • Exercise sessions/time:
    • Strength training will be 2 times a week, with two rounds of each exercise. I am going back to 3lb dumbbells, which makes me feel like a wimp because I had been using 5lbs and doing well with those, but today’s strength training session made me sore even with the smallest dumbbells available at the gym so it’s definitely necessary!
    • Elliptical will be 20 minutes to start with and 3 times a week, focusing on changing the resistance levels and not pushing too hard because that has caused me bone/joint pain when I try. I will step back up to 30 minutes on the elliptical when I know my body is ready.
    • Half marathon training will be 2 times a week to start: 15 seconds maximum jogging at a time, walking to warm up a minimum of 1 mile before doing the first jogging interval because I feel that’s what my muscles and feet need to ease into this.
    • Walking/walking videos will be 2-3 times a week with a goal of 30-45 minutes outside maximum, or 30 minutes maximum indoors with videos.

So there you have it, I still need to go back to basics sometimes. This isn’t necessarily all “basics” for me but you get the idea!

What are your goals for November? It will be a busy month for a lot of us but we are strong and powerful, and we can stick to our goals!

~Bonnie~

How to Beat the Motivation Slump

Everyone deals with that motivation slump from time to time. I know I personally deal with it at least once a week. It’s those days where nothing sounds appealing and you just can’t get motivated. It is especially tough when your bed is more appealing than going about your day. This type of day can be frustrating beyond words as you know that you have many things to do, and some of them are even desirable, but you can’t get yourself started with any of it.

motivation slump

Here are some ways I have found to beat that all compelling motivation slump:

  • Take a moment to drink coffee: Use your morning coffee as a chance to wake up and get motivated. Drink it a little slower to enjoy the moment and revive your mind after a night’s slumber. Read something you find motivational while you drink, such as a magazine, part of a book, uplifting news stories or articles, etc.
  • Fake it till you make it: Have you heard of this saying? Sometimes simply going through the motions of the day helps you find motivation to move forward again. Eventually something clicks and you feel better again, rejuvenated even!
  • Do something simple that brings you joy: A way to baby step your way into your day… find something simple and easy to do that also helps you move toward your goals. You can’t find the motivation to workout? Go on Pinterest and look at all the healthy living pins or read some blogs on the specific topic. You can’t find the motivation to work? Make a list of something related to your work that makes you happy.
  • Blog/Journal: Sometimes blogging or journaling helps as well, just working through your thoughts and emotions can help you process whatever has put up a “motivational roadblock” in your mind. Other times it brings to light a spark of interest in doing something you need to do because you thought of something completely new!
  • Listen to upbeat music: Listening to upbeat music, or simply your favorite music, is uplifting and inspirational! Try it sometime when your motivation is down the drain.
  • Go for a walk or exercise: Take a walk outside. The fresh air and sunshine will do you tons of good. All other types of exercise as well can help revitalize your body and mind at the same time.
  • Let loose: Act like a kid again, or simply let yourself be carefree. The release is amazing and can remind you why it’s worthwhile to just take action and live life!
  • Post on social media: The moment you post on social media that you don’t feel like doing something, you either get feedback that helps motivate you… or you feel motivated because you feel relieved, taking the pressure off. Sometimes even finding something positive to post on social media can help ignite a fire within you.

What do you personally do to get yourself motivated on a day where nothing seems appealing? I’m sure we could all use a whole arsenal of ideas to spur us to action on those days!

~Bonnie~