So it appears as if my mobile posts aren’t posting….

I was wondering why I’ve been having such little activity, but I haven’t been able to get on a computer for a few days and I’ve been posting solely from mobile- and NOTHING HAS POSTED. So this is how I’m feeling about that right about now…:

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I’ve been posting some AWESOME recipes the past few days, so my posts haven’t been long. DON’T WORRY. I’ll be re-posting those recipes!!!

Remember how I told you all how I’ve been doing a fitness transformation? Well, I just started my third week… So the end of this week will mark my halfway point! I’ve got an update picture for you guys…. And I apologize in advance for how horrible of quality it is. I go to Planet Fitness instead of my work gym now, so I feel weird about taking pictures in a busy gym. Also, my apartment doesn’t have a single big mirror, and so I had to settle for the only big mirror in my parent’s house (I visited them yesterday).

The top picture is of my stomach ~3 weeks ago, which I didn’t want to post because I was embarrassed. Still kind of am, but my progress is making me feel better because I can see, and most importantly feel, a difference!

 

Then:

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Now (Yes, my shirt says God Has a Man Bun. I bought it as a joke and now it’s my sleep shirt):

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Clearly my BodyBuilding.com workout plan is working out for me! I’ve made quite a few modifications, so it’s unlike the program you’ll see on their site. Anyone interested in my plan? I’ll post it here!

Funny story- I weighed myself two days ago and it told me I weighed 145 lbs… Which would be a 17 pound increase in 3 weeks. I immediately laughed and got off the scale. If that doesn’t prove to all of you that scales CAN be wrong, then nothing will!

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Have I mentioned that I have a Twitter? Follow me at @SierraGratale! I mainly tweet and retweet stuff related to feminism and tech, but occasionally I’ll include some fitness stuff… The problem is, I don’t know any fitness influencers on Twitter. Any suggestions???

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FINALLY FRIDAY

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Wow, cannot believe this is my third (or is it fourth?) post of the day.

First, some awesome news: my boyfriend, who had surgery in October, is FINALLY cleared to get back to working out! And by a stroke of luck, I started my “transformation” only a week before him, so we’re in this together! Stay tuned for a joint blog and/or Instagram. He’s super knowledgeable when it comes to fitness, so he’s going to be a great addition to the fitness community! Unfortunately guys, he doesn’t run. I know, it was almost a deal breaker for me….. But he’s a really incredible biker, so I settled. ­čśë

A lot of friends of mine from college, work, high school, etc. are getting into fitness now, which is GREAT! I hate people who discourage and/or mock people who are trying to make a change with their lives. Of course, some stuff should stay off social media (personally, all of my social media accounts aren’t fitness-based at all), but if someone wishes to share their journey then I 100% support them.

This being said, I’ve noticed SO MANY of these girls are not eating to fuel their bodies at all. They think eating a handful of spinach with a hardboiled egg is considered a nutritious and fueling lunch (am I the only one who cringed while reading that?). Now, I grew up with parents who were always very into healthy eating- my father is a chef who specializes in nutritional meals, and my mother is a nutritional baker (and the only person who can replace oils and sugars and butter with applesauce and greek yogurt and somehow make it taste BETTER), so luckily I’ve always been exposed to awesome meals that are extremely healthy. I cringe when I watch people eat plain brown rice with plain chicken breast. WHERE IS THE SEASONING?

So before I show you what I had for lunch, I want to be clear on my eating habits. I used to eat “american style”- big breakfast, small lunch, big dinner (and of course snacks in between), but I work for a German company and was exposed to the European culture, which is a big breakfast, big lunch, and a small dinner. Changing to this lifestyle did WONDERS for my weight, my health, and my energy. So here’s what I had for lunch today. (Lucky for me, I work at a healthcare company, so a huge focus in the cafe is “FIT” foods):

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This beautiful creation you see above is Beef and Lentil Bolognese with Roasted Potatoes and LOTS of spices (garlic, red pepper flakes, pepper… the list goes on and on), and of course, parm cheese. If you’re the type of person who doesn’t put parm cheese on their food for a fear of adding extra calories, then you are crazy and need to stop that right now. PARM CHEESE IS AMAZING.

Do you think this tastes as good as I think it tastes? WELL I HAVE GREAT NEWS. I asked the chef for the recipe, and within 20 minutes he emailed it to me and now I am the lucky owner of one of the most amazing meals I’ve ever had. And lucky for you, I’m willing to share!

1/4 cup Oil, Olive
3/4 pound Onions, Yellow, Fresh, Diced
1/2 pound Carrots, Fresh, Diced
1 pound Beef, Ground, 80/20, Raw
1/4 cup Garlic Cloves, Peeled, Fresh, Minced
1/4 cup Seasoning, Italian
1/2 cup Tomato Paste, Canned
3 quart Tomato Puree, Canned
1 tsp Salt, Kosher
1/2 tsp Spice, Pepper, Black, Ground
12 ounce Ingredient: Cooked Lentils
2 tbsp Vinegar, Balsamic
Preparation
Method
In a large pan, heat olive oil and saute the onions and carrots until soft and onions are golden, about 10 minutes. Add the ground beef and cook until fully cooked. Add the garlic and Italian seasoning and cook a minute. Add the tomato paste and cook stirring until the paste is caramelized, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato puree or crushed tomatoes and season with salt and black pepper. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, cook the lentils until very tender. Drain and crush slightly by pulsing in a food processor. Add to sauce and season with balsamic vinegar.Portion size: 1 cup

 

I cannot wait to make this this weekend. Anyone else try an awesome recipe today? I’m always looking for new recipes!

 

DAY 2!

Interested in my WOD today? Here it is!:
But first… I am in SO much pain from yesterday! I went from a solid 0 straight to 100 in terms of lifting. Struggling to walk. So a run is not happening… I did some light biking and might go on another bike later, but definitely need to work on mending these SORE muscles first! But not running on a treadmill today made me feel like this…:
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I am going crazy waiting for it to be warm enough to run outside again!!!

Barbell Bench Press- Medium Grip

  • Muscle Targeted: Chest
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: Smith Machine (The instructions said to use a barbell, but my gym only has a Smith Machine).
  • 5 sets of 12 reps, total of 60 reps

Triceps Pushdown

  • Muscle Targeted: Triceps
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: Cable
  • 4 sets of 12, total of 48 reps

Cable Crossover

  • Muscle Targeted: Chest
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: Cable
  • 4 sets of 12, total of 48 reps

Lying Triceps Press (in high school we called these Skull Crushers..)

  • Muscle Targeted: Triceps
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: E-Z Curl Bar
  • 4 sets of 12, total of 48 reps

Bosu Ball Push-Ups

  • Til failure
  • ****The plan called for medicine ball push-ups, but I am WAY too weak for that atm ­čśŽ

Is anyone interested in following some of these workouts? If so, I can post pictures / videos!

DAY 1

I completed DAY 1 of my transformation and didn’t pass out! (Almost, though……). Today was leg day, and this is how I’m feeling right now….:

leg day

As a distance runner, my leg day has always consisted of 8+ mile runs. I’ve lifted before, but it was always for maintenance/strength rather than toning. My first year of college I was a D1 athlete, and although I had great access to top trainers, it was still strength-focused. I’m excited to start my first toning plan!

Interested in what I did that has me dying as I walk? Here’s my WOD (I promise I don’t do crossfit):

2 Miles @goal race pace

  • 7:55 splits, which is just slightly above my ultimate goal race pace (7:42.00), but below my expected race pace (which is 8:00.42)

Barbell Squat

  • Muscle Targeted: Quads
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: Barbell
  • 5 sets of 12 reps: total of 60

Dumbbell Rear Lunge

  • Muscle Targeted: Quads
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: Barbell (Accidentally misread and used a Barbell instead of a Dumbell!)
  • 4 sets of 12 on each side: total of 96

Single Leg Box Squat

  • Muscle Targeted: Quads
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: I used a bench!
  • 4 sets of 12 on each side

Plank With Band Row

*This is meant to be done with a partner, but since I don’t have one, I looped the band around a pole on a machine and it worked just as well!

  • Muscle Targeted: Middle Back
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: Band, Exercise Mat
  • 3 sets of 10 on each side

Leg Raises

  • Muscle Targeted: Abs
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: Your body!

And finally, everyone’s favorite…. Russian Twists

  • Muscle Targeted: Abs
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Type: Your body! And a medicine ball (I used 5 lbs, definitely could’ve done more.)

*Ran out of time, so later tonight after class I’ll be finishing up another 2 mile run. If I can stay awake that long….

 

Seems easy, right? Yeah, I thought so too, until I wanted to pass out mid-lunges. Keep in mind I’m your typical weak runner, so this is probably harder for me than it is for others who have more strength. Here’s a before pic:

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I’m new to this whole “progress pic” thing, so I’m thinking I’ll prob post a progress pic every Monday. Is that reasonable, or is that too much? Anyway, day 1 down, 41 days to go! Hope some of you will join me!

Also, I stumbled upon this article today. I already knew what 5lbs muscle looks like compared to fat, but that pic NEVER gets old for me. Hope you all enjoy that article as much as I do, it’s quite the inspiration!

Well, it’s time for me to leave work and head out to 5 hours of class (as if Mondays already weren’t bad enough). Happy Monday/Leap Day running! Are any of you ladies proposing to your significant other today, Irish style?

 

 

 

I’ve been MIA… But there’s a reason, I swear!

Hey guys! I apologize for being MIA, but like I said, there’s good reason! I’ve been at a training conference, learning about innovation, creativity, and brainstorming and how to integrate all of this into the workplace while reducing workplace stress. It probably sounds boring, but it was actually really really really awesome.

Anyway! I haven’t been on the run for 4 days due to that, and still suffering from those shin splints ­čśŽ However, yesterday was BEAUTIFUL and I was able to get outside and go on a long hike with my puppy. Here is a picture of him and his first ever hike:

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I’ve decided I want to try to transform my body from the typical “runner body” into something much more different. I found help from a friend who introduced me to Bodybuilding.com (how did I not know how AWESOME this site is?!) which matched me up with a personalized program to transform my body. I chose a 6 week program because my half marathon is in 7 weeks and I want to have some results before that and see if I PR with a totally different body type than ever before! I just started this awesome plan and I’m PSYCHED, but please keep in mind that this is personalized towards my goals! You can always head over to Bodybuilding.com and take the quiz to find out what is best personalized for your goals. And if you end up getting the same as me, let’s be Fitness PenPals!

Interested in what I’ll be snacking on during this transformation? Check out my MyFitnessPal profile, and follow me on there if you want! It’s a brand new profile specifically tailored to my ~transformation~, so as of now it’s empty!

OH, and I almost forgot- Happy Leap Year! Is anyone a Leap Year baby? If so, when do you go out for your 21st if it is on a year that isn’t a Leap Year? I’ve always wondered.

good news

Happy running, guys! And if you can’t get a run in today, don’t feel bad, because normally you only get 365 days a year to run anyway!!