Friday, April 29, 2011

Do You Lose "Workout Steam" on Fridays?

I do...Actually, I NEVER workout on Saturdays and I rarely work out on Sundays.  I'm GREAT M-Th.  Then by Friday morning, I begin talking myself out of going to the gym.  However, I stop myself quickly because I have been victim to that voice in my head trying to convince me to stay home to catch up on work instead. Can't you picture it?...Jane Fonda with her leg warmers on my right shoulder telling me to work out.  Then there is Richard Simmons with a pitchfork on my left shoulder, telling me that I can just sweat to the oldies tomorrow.  This morning was one of those mornings!  I had a long, tiring week, just like the rest of you.  So I peeled myself out of bed and got dressed immediately.  If I went downstairs in my PJ's first, Richard Simmons would have won.  Before I even went downstairs I put my contacts in, brushed my teeth, and put on my workout clothes.  That was a step in the right direction!  As soon as the kids were on the bus, I was GONE!  I was still tired and needed a bit of motivation once I got to the Y. So as soon as I arrived, I hopped on the elliptical.  It was 8a.m and do YOU know what is on A&E at 8:00 a.m.?  Reruns of THE SOPRANOS! Dang, I love that show!  So, while EVERYONE else at the Y was watching the boring kiss between William and Kate over and over and over again,  I burned over 400 cals in 30 minutes of Mafia Massacre.  During the commercials, I kicked it up an extra notch for some interval training.  By the time my 30 minutes were up, I had plenty of energy so I hit the track for some lunges.  I put on my Bethany Beach playlist (to remind me that i need to be in a bikini in 3 months) and I ended up doing 25 minutes of walking lunges around the track.  It felt great! I also kept thinking about my sister's wedding coming up in 3 weeks from today!  I can't wait.  Did you see my shoes yet?  Here is a picture, just in case you haven't seen them.  Anyone want to teach me how to walk in them?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Touchy Subject...When Can Exercise Become Obsessive

I'm embarking on dangerous waters here...some readers may disagree with what I'm about to say.  However, my views on this subject are my true beliefs.  They come from personal and professional experience.  I am speaking from my heart and my brain here, so you can't be mad at me for that right?  Remember, we need to agree to disagree.  So, when IS exercise too much?  When does it become obsessive?  When does it become a problem?  When does it lie on the fine line of exercise bulimia?  Here it goes...again, I'm speaking from my personal experience and from what I have witnessed through years of being a Personal Trainer.  First off, exercise should be fun.  It should not be dreadful.  Are we always going to have a HUGE smile on our face at 5 a.m. when we drag ourselves out of bed to workout?  Heck no...However, when we are finished, we should feel energetic, happy, and accomplished. Healthy competition with ourselves and each other is good for us.  However, there is a fine line.  Take my "interest" (or obsession) with 5k races.  Though I never have thought of myself as a "true runner", I enjoyed running as part of my cross training and as part of my fitness routine.  Then something "snapped" about 7 years ago.  I used to run 5k races often. For some reason though, right after my second son was born, I found this dire need to "win" the 5k races.  It was some kind of a battle within myself.  I'm still uncertain why, but I became truly obsessed.  If I missed a day of running at the gym, I would be so angry and disappointed in myself.  I started signing up for every 5k race I could find.  Finally after all of my hard work, I placed first in my age group!  I ran it in just over 24 minutes (i don't even remember the time) and I won a trophy!  However, whatever void I thought "winning" would fill, it didn't.  Therefore, I thought I need to work harder and to improve my time.  So, there I was.  On the vicious cycle of obsession and unhealthy competition within myself.  NO ONE cared whether I won or got a stupid trophy.  Why did it matter so much?  I still cannot answer that.  All I know is that I started to HATE running.  I began to run everyday, faster and faster, to the point where I wanted to puke or cry. My best race, I ran in 23'10 and came in second place overall.  Again, it didn't matter.  It didn't fill the void.  My hip started to hurt and my back started to hurt.  I felt terrible, physically, but kept at it.  Finally, after about a year of this, I realized enough was enough.  I wanted to enjoy running again and I wanted to recover from my hip injury and my back pain.  I was simply exhausted.  I talked to my husband about my problem and, like always, he totally made me see the light and helped me through it.  I decided to set a new goal.  I told myself that I would NEVER do that to myself again and I haven't.  I started "jogging" for distance rather than time.  I slowed down and signed up for a few 10ks, 15ks and eventually a half marathon.  In 6 years, I haven't looked at my time when crossing the finish line.  People always ask at the end of my races "how did you do?".  What they are really asking is "what was your time, Miss Fitness Trainer...?"  I tell them "I did great!  I finished!".  I am proud to say that many of my clients have become runners and enter races with me often.  I am also proud to say that most of them run right past me during the race!  I always cheer them on and encourage them.  However, I also preach to them often about healthy competition, versus obsession and that they need to be careful.  My advice to anyone reading this....if you beat yourself up when you miss a workout, run/workout through pain of any kind and feel like all you do is think and talk about exercise, then take a step back to see if this could be a problem.  We want to exercise to be healthy!  Balance is what it's all about.  I workout 5 days per week.  I cross train....i lift weights, run, elliptical, cycle, spin...I just put my 5k a day to rest because my ankle and back have been bothering me from pounding the treadmill.  I have made a pact with myself to give up running for one month to heal.  I am FINE with that.  It's nice to be doing some different forms of cardio.  This is an important message....I hope you got something out of it....


Monday, April 25, 2011

Power Packed Breakfast

Hello blog readers!  Sorry I haven't blogged in over a week.  My kids were home last week do I decided to limit my time on the computer.  What a great week and a great holiday.  Now it's time to get back into work mode and workOUT mode.  My back was bothering me yet again last week, so my exercise was limited to only 3x.  I feel great now and just came back from a full weight training/cardio workout at the gym!  I was dreaming about my egg white/spinach and cheese omelet that I was going to make, only soon realizing that the kids colored all of my eggs and then ate them.  I have ZERO eggs in the house. How depressing!  All I found were cheerios and I need to eat an entire box of cheerios to feel satiated.  Then....I spotted the new canister of oatmeal I just bought!  Woot woot!  I go in out and of Oatmeal phases.  I haven't had oats in a while, so I decided that I would have them for my post-workout breakfast this morning.  I forgot how good they are and how healthy they are!  Be CAREFUL!  When I say "oatmeal", I DO NOT mean the instant packets loaded with sugar and artificial flavor.  I mean the steel cut oats or the five grain cereal that I bought.  The ingredients in my canister are:  100% natural oats, rye, barely, golden flax and triticale (triticale is a hybrid grain by crossing wheat and rye packed with protein).  I cooked it in water, added salt, a teaspoon of real sugar and some ground cinnamon.  YUM!  I feel plenty satiated and just put some serious nutrients into my body.  Here is the nutritional value:

Cals:  160
Fat:    2.5 g
Carbs:  28 g
Fiber:    6 g
Sugars:   4.2 (would be zero if i didn't add sugar)
Protein:   6 grams

I have attached a picture.  I bought it in the organic section of Hannaford.  Tastier then plain old Oats.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Boot Camp Challenge Spring Camps!

So, these are two of my Drill Sergeants in the Warrior Dash last year.  Yes, here in Boot Camp Challenge, we, the Instructors practice what we preach!  DS Janet can give you the workout of your life in Clifton Park, and DS 205 (because she can bench press 205 lbs) can give you a true Boot Camp Challenge experience in Schenectady at the JCC.  Don't forget my other locations:  DS Rock in Malta, DS Tina in Colonie, DS Nikki in Troy and DS Mel (that's me!) in Clifton Park.  This program is for EVERYONE.  We take men and women of all ages and all fitness levels.  Our boot camps are taught by professional, seasoned, CERTIFIED Personal Trainers and we can truly accommodate the beginner, intermediate and advanced exerciser in each camp.  We run our camps OUTDOORS on this awesome weather and most camps meet for 6 weeks, 3x per week in the early morning.  There is also a nutritional component and all clients are measured and tested the first and last day of camp so you can walk out with TANGIBLE results!  Camps are filling fast and starting soon, so why not step out of your comfort zone and give it a shot?  You CAN do this and you WILL have the best summer of your life if you do :) 

DS Mel and DS Rock

BCC Clifton Park!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Autism Gala 2011

Last night was the 9th Annual Autism Society of America Gala.  What an amazing event.  This was our 6th year attending and it was the best yet. The event took place at Glen Sanders Mansion in Scotia. What a place...the food was absolutely superb (as always).  Every year, this event gives us a chance to sit back and reflect on the gift that God has given us...our amazing son, Anthony.  The Autism community of the Capital District gets together to celebrate the differences of our children.  Parents, teachers, family members, local programs,  and many others who support and advocate for our children are given the opportunity to gather and celebrate.  Last year we raised $70,000 at the Gala and I'm sure we are close to that this year as well.  Matt and I got all decked out, ate, drank, networked and spent way more money than anticipated on the silent auction.  I swore that this year we would NOT bid on ANYTHING.  The trip for 4 to Sturbridge Village and the Howe Cavern tickets that we spend hundreds of dollars on last year are sitting in my office, expired, collecting dust.  But, this year....after 2 gin and tonics, that Empire State Building framed painting looked damn good!  we HAD to get that for Anthony who is obsessed with the Empire State Building.  So,  $80 later, here we are with a framed painting.  Anthony does think it's cool, but he thought the chocolate puzzle piece favor that probably cost 50 cents was MUCH cooler.  One thing that last night's Gala helped me to  realize was how lucky I am to be married to the man that I am married to.  The diagnosis of Autism can make or break a marriage.  We are so lucky that it has "made" our marriage.  Matt and I have become so much closer over the years as we figure our way through this journey. He really is the best husband in the world and I am so lucky to have him.  We had a blast last night.  Just the two of us...dancing, hanging, talking, and reflecting on our lives and our family.  I am blessed to have him (even though he is always late, can't keep a secret if his life depended on it, and is extremely forgetful...but who's keeping track).  Anyway, life is good....I can't complain.  Now....time for wedding shower mode.  the Waterslide Wedding Shower is next Saturday!  Lots to do and lots to report on, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Benefits of Journaling your Food and Mel's RESULTS!

Keeping a food/exercise journal last week was great!  It was such a pain, but no one ever said this fitness stuff would be easy.  If we want results, we need to work for it!  I am no different than my clients.  I know quite a bit about exercise and nutrition.  However, the ice-cream monster still lingers often in my closets and my pantries.  I crave junk too!  Journaling forced me to face head-on, my weaknesses.  I am a pretzel and ice cream junkie.  I cut the pretzels out, but I just cannot and will not cut the ice-cream out.  These are the types of choices we need to make.  If we want to be healthy, we must make sacrifices.  We don't need to be perfect by any means.  However, journaling your food will make you AWARE!  It certainly made me aware!  So, what were my results?

I rarely weigh myself and I truly believe that our society needs to throw our scales out the window.  However, I weighed myself before and after my journaling experiment and I lost THREE pounds!  For my little, miniature frame, 3 lbs is GREAT!  I'm very pleased with that.  I'll just throw it all out there.  I started the week at 128 lbs and after 7 days I weighed 125.  That includes 5 days of moderate-vigorous exercise.  Please remember how important exercise is!  GET IT IN! 

Though I'm not journaling this week, I am still working on being very aware of my food intake and my exercise.  My dress fitting is coming up for the Waterslide Wedding and I want to feel like a 20 yr old bridesmaid!  I know I can do it!

Sunday, April 3, 2011


1 slice of cin. raisin Ezekiel Toast with natural PB and 8 oz of skim milk
CALS:  230

CALS BURNED:  about 600

11:00 a.m. BREAKFAST
5 eggwhite omelet with 2 slices of American cheese (thin) and 1 serving of baby spinach.  One slice of whole wheat toast and 1 tbsp of LOL whipped butter.
CALS:  385

1:00 LUNCH
half of roasted chicken breast sandwich on whole wheat with light mayo and one slice of amercian cheese.  with 1 serving of Indiana Sea Salt Popcorn.
CALS:  510

3:00 SNACK
Chobani greek yogurt
CALS:  140

5:30 SNACK
cheese and crackers with my wine....
CALS:  240

1/2 serving of pasta with homemade sauce, too much spiral ham, lots of salad with low cal lime dressing YUM, few black berries
(ham probably added up to 350...yikes)
2 white wines
CALS:  700 Man o adds up fast....


Stay tuned tomorrow for my summary of the week with my stats!

Saturday...Where Are You Fruits and Veggies? On a Long Weekend Getaway?

REST DAY:  NO EXERCISE.  Actually,  I shouldn't say that.  I got the snot pounded out of me in Boot Camp Challenge this morning while holding the boxing pads so my clients could throw punches.  Boy are they strong! My arms felt like jelly after an hour of that!  Probably burned about 150 cals.

10:15 BREAKFAST (way too late)
whole wheat Bruegger's bagel with a teeny smear of cream cheese, an egg white and sliced tomatoes
CALS:  about 400

12:45 LUNCH
Can of Tuna in water, 1 TBSP of light mayo, slice of American on a whole wheat sandwich thin.  1/2 serving of Indiana Sea Salt Popcorn
CALS:  430

2 glasses of white wine, HUGE salad with greens, cherry tomatoes and onions, with roasted turkey breast a little American cheese and a 1/2 serving of blue cheese dressing.  One small piece of Italian bread and butter (out to dinner...can you tell?)
CALS:  about 750 (yikes!)

8:00 SNACK
Edy's slow churned light drumstick flavor.  so good
it's hard to have one serving though...i had a bout 1/5
CALS:  200


Today I did NOT eat often enough and not enough fruits and veggies. Weekends are so busy that it's hard to focus on good nutrition.  I did have a salad though at Venenzia when the rest of my family had pizza and meatball heroes.  We have to make sacrifices if we want to be fit!  Stay tuned for my LAST day of my weekly exercise and food journal. 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Friday's Food and Exercise...this is my weak spot...

Weekends are hard for me, just like they are hard for most people.  Please keep in mind that I am a human being too :)


9:30 a.m. BREAKFAST
5 egg white omelet with baby spinach and 2 slice of cheese.  Slice of Ezek. toast with 1 serving of LOL whipped butter.
CALS:  395

at 11:00 a.m. I left to go to Channel 13 for my News Segment.  After 3 years, I'm still nervous to go on live TV and always have butterflies the morning of my segment.  Therefore, I do not fuel well on Fitness Friday days....

mini york peppermint patty
CALS:  60

2:30 p.m. LUNCH
4 oz grilled white fish on one slice of whole wheat with a smear of tartar sauce and one slice of American
CALS:   330

3:30 pm SNACK
Indiana Organic Sea Salt Popcorn 1/2 serving
CALS:   60

5:30 pm HAPPY HOUR?
2 glasses of white wine  (300)
cheese and crackers  (200 (estimate))
CALS:  500

7:00 pm DINNER
Tuna noodle casserole homemade with whole grain, high fiber egg noodles, tuna in water, peas and low fat cream of mushroom soup with a green salad on the side with a teeny bit of lite ranch dressing
CALS:  530

9:00 SNACK
raspberry sorbet
CALS: 120

BEVERAGES:  2 cups of coffee, 50 oz water, 1 diet coke


I need to work on my water intake AND increase my fruits and veggies.  No fruit today!  Yikes!