Monday, November 23, 2015

Putting the FUN Back Into Fitness #holidaysweat

Putting the fun back into ftness has pretty much been my whole focus this year.  I have not worried about mileage or speed in my running, or reps and sets in my strength training.  I have not timed my planks nor have I paid much attention to the stats that come in my weekly FitBit reports.

This girl just wants to have fun!

These past few weeks, after finishing up a gruelling and tough 9 weeks of Metabolic Aftershock workouts, I concentrated on getting my food plan under control.  And while I was doing that, I only walked for exercise.... it was enough, given the carb depleting I was doing... but on Sunday, yesterday, I finally got out for a run and it felt just great!

The Captain and I did an easy 4 km loop around the park and along the Strait.  It was enough, after not having run at all for several weeks.  It took 30 minutes.  But that is okay.  It was just so exhiliarating to get out in the late morning sunshine and brisk breeze and move!

Running for the love of it... for FUN... has always been my main motivation.  In the past when I was in training for a particular event of some sort, running didn't feel like fun.  It was an obligation.  I had to do it. I had to keep to a schedule and get it done, whether I really wanted to or not, whether it was raining or windy... not fun for me and so I don't do it anymore.

And this week, starting today, I am back to doing some strength training, too.  I have decided to use the 21 Day Fix workouts again for a while. I really enjoy the Upper Body Fix and the Dirty 30 routines so those will be my main focus... should get me through the holidays... that and running!

And of course walking... there is always walking. This city has so many wonderful places to walk! And with the holidays quickly approaching, there are so many lovely and festive displays to take in as well.

What makes fitness FUN for you?

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Tommie Copper Contoured Compression Knee Sleeve Review and Giveaway

A few weeks ago I was given a new garment in the Tommie Copper lineup to wear test.  I was not asked for a blog review post, but have decided to go ahead and publish one anyway... I am always happy to share great finds and new products with my friends and readers... this is one of those great new products that just needs to be promoted.

It is a new knee sleeve.  Doesn't sound like anything too special, but this is a CONTOURED knee sleeve and it really is very special, and quite innovative.

It offers targeted isolated compression at the knee joint... and fits comfortably around the thigh and calf.  There is a soft elastic band around the thigh and an encased elastic band around the calf... no slipping... extremely comfortable.  Because it is contoured, there is less fabric behind the knee joint so there is no bunching.  It is sleek and fits easily under other garments.

I have been wearing it under tights as well as jeans and capris, and it is almost invisible.

If you have knee problems of any kind... and I know most runners do, from time to time, this just might be a great tool in your recovery arsenal.  The fabric promotes increased blow flow and it provides a soothing, calming warmth to the area of your body it covers.

The sleeve is made from patented Copper Znergy fabric combined copper and zinc for permanent anti-odor protection and is easy to care for. I admit to babying my Tommie Copper garments by hand washing them and hanging to dry... but you don't have to do that.

I think the the key to making this contoured knee sleeve work for you is to use the sizing chart and making sure you select the proper size. You don't want it to be too tight and you certainly don't want it to be so loose that it is falling down.

As with all of the Tommie Copper garments and gear I have tried, this is another winner in my books.

If you would like to try a women's sleeve or a men's sleeve, and live in Canada or the U.S., leave me a comment on this post.  I will pick a winner on November 30th and my contact at Tommie Copper will outfit you with a sleeve, too.  Make sure you leave contact information as well, because if I cannot notify you, you will not be the winner!

Check out the sleeve on the Tommie Copper web site.

Do ever have knee pain?  How do you deal with it?

Monday, November 9, 2015

Clean Lean Protein

For the past many many months, not a day has gone by when I have not consumed a protein supplement in some form, at some point during the day.

After I play tennis, or during a round of golf, it is convenient to unwrap a protein bar.  When I am on the fly and need a quick breakfast, I will put together a protein powder shake or make up a smoothie 'bowl'. When I have more time for breakfast I make waffles or pancakes or 'puffs' with protein powder and egg whites.

If I am wanting a little extra 'sweet' after my lunch or dinner, I may mix some protein powder with a bit of nut milk and add a handful of cashews or walnuts or almonds, and call it dessert.  And sometimes I mix protein powder with a bit of nut milk to make fruit dip.

But most importantly, after a tough workout, or a sweaty run, I make up a protein smoothie to help make sure I have a comfortable and healthy recovery.  I like to use a powder that mixes readily, and completely, that tastes great, and that has a favorable nutritional profile.

Well, have you met the latest and brightest star in the vegetable protein lineup?  It is pea protein.

A few weeks ago I was given the opportunity to sample a variety from Nu-Zest USA called CLEAN LEAN PROTEIN... they sent me 4 sample packs to test.   I was so happy with the taste and texture and nutritional information, that I decided to become an affiliate.  I liked the Wild Stawberry, the Rich Chocolate, and the Creamy Cappucino, but my favorite is always vanilla and this Smooth Vanilla is exceptional.  There is also an unflavored powder called Just Natural.

For me, the first test of a protein powder is how it tastes mixed with only water.  And these certainly passed that test.  I admit to liking them better mixed with coconut or almond milk, for the creaminess factor.... but in a pinch, water is fine. That makes them particularly handy to carry in you gym bag or purse so that you have a healthy snack or mini-meal at the ready.

And the second test is how long they stick to my ribs... whether they satisfy me for a few hours after I have consumed them. I have found that the CLEAN LEAN PROTEIN keeps me feeling full for at least 3 or 4 hours.  Great.

These powders are very high in protein, low in fat and low in carbohydrates.  They fit into a low-carb lifestyle such as mine, just perfectly.  CLEAN LEAN PROTEIN is formulated from European Golden Peas making it highly and readily digestible.  It is gluten free, dairy free, soy free, and GMO free.   It is a complete protein, containing all 9 essential amino acids.

I am happy to tell you that NuZest offers free shipping to Canada and the 48 mainland states in the U.S.A. on orders over $50.  Free shipping. That is always good news to Canadians because we pay outrageous fees here for postage and couriers.

Do have a look at the NuZest USA web site for yourself to read all the important and relevant information.  There are even some recipes there for you to try.  Sign up for an email subscription to get a free sample, too.  And there is a giveaway happening for two tubs as well. Don't miss that for sure!

And if you do decide to go ahead and buy, please use the code eatrunsail in order to receive a 15% discount on your purchase. Yes, I will earn a small commission.  But in all honesty, my blog is not about earning an income, and any money that does come to me from these sales, will be donated to my local SPCA.

Have you tried a pea protein yet?  What is your favorite way to use protein powder?  What do you eat after a workout or run to help with recovery?

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Holiday Sweat Challenge 2015

I have decided to take the plunge and join in the  2015 Holiday Sweat Challenge!

You may know this annual event from years gone by as the Holiday Bootie Buster Challenge that was started by Amanda Brooks from Run to the Finish... well now she has joined forces with Sweat Pink and is has gone through some changes.

It appears to be more fun and less competitive than it came to be in the past so I am looking forward to giving it a whirl.... if you are interested, click on the logo and find Amanda's post with all the details.

It promises to be an 8 week journey of workouts, prizes, support and community building. Sounds like a winner.  Use the hashtag #HolidaySweat to follow along and share your own sweaty efforts!

Won't you join me?  How do you plan to stay active through the holidays?

If you are looking for some ways to keep up with your fitness during the holiday season, check out this post for some other tips.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

So Long, October... It's Been Fun!

Yes, it truly has been a fun October!

The Captain and I  have finally completed 9 weeks of the Metabolic Aftershock workouts and I am so glad to see them come to an end. These workouts are organized in 3 phases. Each phase is a series of 3 different workouts to be done each week for 3 weeks. The phase 3 workouts are killer and even though the 15 minutes goes by pretty quickly, they are tough.  I really need the 30-minute walk after each to shake out my legs and stretch the muscles.  Sometimes we joke about taking bus fare in case we cannot walk for 30 minutes!

This is the second time through this series for us.  I like to alternate it with a few weeks of more traditional strength training just to keep things interesting, and the body challenged.  As much as I grouse about them, I love what these workouts do for my legs especially!

And, we have also done some golfing at a new-to-us course and have really been enjoying that. I do think that a golf course is one of the best places to be on a nice day!

I was introduced to NuZest's CLEAN LEAN PROTEIN and have fallen quite in love!  It comes in a few different flavors and I will be sharing more about it in the future. 

The Captain and I volunteered at our local GoodLife Fitness marathon again this year, handing out race participants' shirts at the expo on Friday night. It is a fun way to be involved in the race excitement and we always get a nice technical tee (New Balance) for our efforts.  I would like to run this race but honestly, with the probability of rain in October, I just cannot bring myself to commit. This year the runners really lucked out as the rain quit for several hours on Sunday morning for all the festivities!

I love the color!  And it is not a bad shirt even if a bit big... it also matches my Mizuno shoes so I used it as an overshirt on my Sunday morning run this week.  

Right now I am enjoying spicy tea in the afternoons. For some reason it seems like a Fall drink to me, especially if it is wet or gloomy outside my window!

I sometimes make a whole pot, but often just a cup at a time!  Do you do that, too?

I have been enjoying a lower-carb food program lately... carb cycling actually, and it seems to suit me very well.  It does mean that I am trying to eat more protein and a bit more fat, though.  And I am also working on eating enough at each meal so that I am not wanting to snack. So yesterday I made a little dessert after my lunch... I mixed some vanilla protein powder with coconut milk and natural peanut butter and a bit of cinnamon and spooned it on some apple slices.  YUMMERS!  It would make a great snack, too!

I love my new Reebok yoga mat. We picked up a couple of them at an outlet store in Burlington, WA when we were there at the end of  September.  The message is great... and it is also a nice sticky mat and I am quite happy with it.

So, how did October shape up for you?  Have you been snacking on Hallowe'en candy?  What are you looking forward to in November?