Health

I did a 100 Burpees for 2 weeks challenge

I love challenging myself and when I hear about something new, fitness related, I have to try it.

I do not like burpees at all. I am one to always skip the burpees and do something else instead. However, I want to be stronger and decided that I can do 100 burpees a day for two weeks and time myself to see how long I can do them and to see how I would feel.

If you did not know burpees can be great for cardio. I would do cardio such as running or the elliptical then go into a racquet ball court (or anywhere where you won’t be distracted) and I set my timer. I decided to do burpees in sets of 10 and would rest in between 10. One day I did 10 burpees, ran a lap, did 10 burpees, ran a lap and did this off and on until I got to 100. You will feel so good and like you’re dying at the same time but when you’re done you’ll have the burpees completed and cardio! It took me about 45 minutes.

The first day I did 100 burpees in 15 minutes. I was so sore the second day but did them in 13 minutes. I wanted to get under 10 and knew I had to speed up. I would think of them in sets of 20. 20-40-60-80-100. That would make things speed up. I would get so pumped up about completing them and I told people about them to keep myself going.

By day 4 I was doing them in 9 minutes and as time went on I kept going down in time. I’ll admit, I had some days I didn’t want to do them but I knew I had to. I would do them even on rest days. I didn’t go to the gym one day because I had a rest day but that night I did my burpees before I showered. You will pour sweat, it’s high intensity but you feel so amazing afterwards.

One day I was working on projects and had meetings so I didn’t get to do them until 11 o’clock at night- what a workout that was. I also did them one day after I did cardio and had leg day in the weight room. It was funny because I was in pain from the weights and was so tired and I was basically crawling up by the time I got to 100 burpees.

I learned that this isn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I would do them alone, with my sister who is also doing this and my boyfriend even jumped in and did them with me. Try them with anyone, turn on music and get pumped up. They are actually really fun! Challenging yourself is always fun and you will feel so accomplished.

Although 2 weeks are over I’m still doing these. Even though it’s not every day I’m doing it several times a week. I feel like because of these my legs have been more toned, my arms and back are toned and it works your core. It’s a total body workout. I can now say that I don’t hate burpees and I don’t mind doing them. If you try this you may change your mind about them.

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Health

Cutting out sugar, dairy and gluten. Here’s what happened.

Starting Out:

I am never one to want fast food, I never order french fries and I don’t crave fried food. I just never want it. However, my sugar intake has always been much harder to control.  I would eat something sweet almost every day and even though it wasn’t binge eating it was more of a reaching for a cookie randomly during the day and not thinking much about it.

I noticed whenever I eat more sweets I would be slower at the gym the following day and I would feel sluggish if I did eat a lot of sweets at one time. I was bloated and my face would break out and I did not feel good at all.

About a month ago I decided that I wanted to up my energy levels, have less stress and feel much about myself. That’s when I decided to try cutting out all added sugar (processed foods, sweets, artificial sweeteners, etc), dairy and gluten. Everyone knows that starting a new habit is always hard the first week and gets easier as time goes on. Around the third day I felt like I was going insane and if someone covered their hand in chocolate I could probably lick it off. I questioned why I am doing this to myself but remembered why I started in the first place, I wanted to better myself. I found myself constantly thinking about sweets and I would look at pictures on Pinterest of desserts even if I couldn’t have them. I used to eat cheese and yogurt a lot and bread and none of that bothered me it was just the sweets.

I decided that if I only do this for a month I am going to go wild with sweets once this is over, so I modified it. I cannot eat sugar, dairy or gluten 6 days a week but on Friday OR Saturday I am allowed to eat normal, just not go crazy. I decided to continue this forever as part of my lifestyle as it is not hard to do and I feel really good and not guilty about the one day a week that I can indulge and treat myself with friends and family.

How I feel now:

I feel amazing now. My energy levels are much higher than before, I am sleeping better, I am not craving sweets anymore like I used to and sometimes when that one day a week comes around I don’t feel like a cookie or ice cream and won’t eat it. I haven’t had regular milk and will reach for soy or almond.

I don’t even want added sugar anymore! The best thing ever is that my sugar craving went away and I do not want it, when I have a coffee I think sugar does not taste good in it now. I will get plain black coffee with soy milk and I won’t order drinks with sugar in them. My stomach is not bloated like it was and I feel much better about myself. My skin is clearer than ever, really it will clear your skin, and I feel so much healthier overall. I will continue doing this for life. It is not hard once you are used to it.

You can do it to:

Remember the saying that it takes 21 days to break a habit? Go hard and remember why you started. If you want clearer skin, less bloat and to have more energy why not change your lifestyle and focus on your health. Think about cutting out all the bad food and added sugar that your body doesn’t want anyways and it will thank you.

It will be challenging at first, you could keep a calendar or post it note or motivational quotes written down on your desk or phone. Tell your friends or family or partner what you are doing and why. Encourage them to do it with you! Do some research and educate yourself. Believe me when I say that it will feel amazing and you WILL shed a few pounds of the unnecessary bloat that you have been holding on to. Set your cheat day for the weekend. Go strong during the week and look forward to Friday/Saturday where you can have what you have been wanting. Remember you can splurge and have some dark chocolate or sugar-free ice cream.  It only gets easier and in no time you won’t be reaching for that cookie in the pantry anymore.

Remember I was only doing this for a month but it changed my whole mindset about sweets and it can change yours too.

Health

10 Delicious Starbucks Drinks Under 150 Calories

Let’s be honest: when you visit Starbucks you are not thinking too much about the calories and sugar in that Double Chocolate Chip Frappuccino that you are about to order. A (tall) 12 oz DCC Frappuccino has 310 calories and 38g of sugar. As a devoted drinker of Starbucks I have had several healthier options to start off my morning or for my afternoon pick me up drink. Being health conscious I stray away from Frappuccino’s and drinks filled with sugar. Here are 10 drinks that you should try at your next Starbucks stop.

1. Caffe Americano

A Caffe Americano is a shot of espresso and hot water. A tall Americano contains 11 calories and will give you enough energy to get through that long busy day.

2. Iced Skinny Vanilla Latte

A personal favorite drink. This can be ordered in hot or iced and contains full-bodied espresso, nonfat milk and sugar-free flavored syrup for only 60 calories for a tall.

3. Chai Tea Latte

For all the tea drinkers this warm drink can be something to satisfy those taste buds for only 103 calories with skimmed milk.

4. Skinny Caramel Macchiato

My all time favorite Starbucks drink. Can be ordered hot or cold. A Skinny Carmel Macchiato has nonfat milk, sugar-free vanilla, espresso and drizzled with caramel for some extra sweetness. A tall is only 100 calories- yum.

5. Cappuccino

If you want a stronger coffee taste without all the sweetness and syrups this yummy drink is only 91 calories when served with skimmed milk. Enough coffee for that energy pick me up.

6. Flat White

Two shots of espresso mixed with creamy whole milk. It is only 119 calories.

7. Iced Cold Brew

Starbucks’ custom blend of beans handcrafted daily and slow-steeped in cool water for 20 hours. 0 calories for any size served black.

8. Caffe Misto

Half coffee and half heated milk. A Tall Caffe Misto with soy milk is only 63 calories.

9. Mocha Frappuccino

For those intense sweet cravings there’s a new However You Want It Frappuccino range. The Mocha Frappuccino will satisfy your taste buds. With no whipped cream and skimmed milk it’s a 96 calorie treat.

10. Crème Brulee Macchiato

The Crème Brulee Macchiato adds Crème Brulee flavoured syrup to a traditional Macchiato. A skimmed Tall drink contains 127 calories.