Stress-Filled Days & The Weekend

These last few days have been a blur. I was extremely not just work, running, working out, yoga, and then some. I have also taken on an exciting opportunity that will let me tackle fitness coaching...but more on that in the future!

Anyway, I described in my last post that I was going a little insane at work and how running & yoga have been an absolute necessity to keep myself from exploding. With the days that followed, there was not much relief. So I stuck close to my workout plan to help relieve the anxiety that has been developing! This added stress is also a motivator to start working towards my own life goals. Every day something doesn't go my way is another reason why I need to really pursue my dreams.

I was thankful when 5:00 came on Friday. I had homemade pizza and wine to enjoy. In fact, I incorporated my Chardonnay into my yoga session on Friday night. I think I may start making this a weekly tradition.

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

On Saturday, I took it easy in the morning.

Then my sister and I joined a few other ladies out at a small restaurant called Pure & Simple. We were having a meet up for those who have joined an accountability group I created in late December. Because everyone was working hard, I thought it would be awesome to meet up and discuss what we have accomplished while eating a healthy meal!

I had a Veggie & Hummus wrap with guacamole added. :)

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

It was da bomb and I intend on having our next month's meet up there as well! Some suggested we go bi-weekly! :o)

Later that day, I managed to get a run in. It was warmer that afternoon, so I was able to hit the streets rather than subject myself to another treadmill run! I decided to switch my long run day to Sunday and do 6.2 miles that afternoon since I still had a ton of stuff to do around the house. No harm done.

But once our day began to settle, I got around to making this gem.

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

This was great! I, personally, would lighten up on the cheese in the future. But that's just me. You can find the recipe here if you want to give it a try!

So new week equals new food plans and workout plans, but I will share the details tomorrow. Right now, I gotta hit my yoga mat for one last practice at Yoga Camp. *sigh*

Keep it real, guys!

Do you do wine and yoga practices? 

Do you have any local restaurants that are all about clean eating? What do they serve?

What was a good meal that you ate this weekend? Recipes please!!!

Take a Brain Break!!

Your job can be undeniably stressful. There are times where you can feel that you are being stretched to your limit and are on the brink of a mental breakdown.

I left the office yesterday feeling fuzzy. My brain was exhausted from being overworked. It was numbing itself from the demands that were placed on it. I knew that I had a choice to make. I would either veg out and let the residual stress of my day linger OR run it off. For me, sitting around would have left my mind to dwell on the workday to come. So I decided that I truly needed to release some endorphins into my body to ease the tension in my brain.

I jumped into my run without much hesitation. Usually when I get on the treadmill, I am not looking forward to the miles ahead. Yesterday, I just kept telling myself that this is what I needed physically, but most importantly, I needed it mentally.

I kicked out 5 miles of varying speeds and inclines. It helped keep my mind busy by throwing in the speed and hill work.

It really did help with my previous mental state. My brain fog had lifted and my energy returned. It was an absolute relief that I had the weight that was squishing my brain eliminated.

Shortly after finishing up, I started to make dinner and let me tell you, this may be one of my top 5 favorite meals.

I grabbed this recipe from SkinnyTaste and this will forever be a part of my life. The combination of flavors from the seasonings made this smell and taste phenomenal. No, not phenomenal. ORGASMIC.

I was thinking of using the meat mixture for other recipes as well. It would go great in soft or hard taco shells, spaghetti squash, and I really want to try it as a burger. I am seriously thinking about buying a huge thing of meat and just making that, freezing it, and having it available when I am craving it. *melts in pleasure*

Following dinner, I made it to my yoga mat for some more mind and body TLC.

A video posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

I am really going to miss Adriene once these 30 days are up, but I may use some of her other practices later and keep the streak going. They do really help ease my mind.

Speaking of yoga, I am off to do today's practice. Another stressful day at work has prompted need for a brain break!!!

Take care!!!

How do you cope with stress?

Do you feel that yoga is not only a benefit to your body, but also your mind?

1 Month of No Added Sugar...Here's What's Up!

I cannot believe that it has been a month since I have started eating better. As bad as I thought it was going to be, I am surviving and doing so with ease!

I have removed about 95% of added sugars from my diet. That other 5% was mainly accidental because I overlooked sugar in the label. Other than those few minor hiccups, I have kept with my goals of dramatically reducing my sugar intake.

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

After this month, I do plan on reintroducing higher sugar fruits and some natural sweeteners. This will allow me to start making some protein shakes that I have been craving after some of my workouts. But, these items will be in controlled quantities. I don't want to end up going off the deep end like I did around the holidays. But if I do find that I am having a hard time resisting, I will step back again! I want to make sure my sugar addiction is under control.

I am going to still abstain from all desserts just a bit longer because I am not sure I can trust myself after just one month. I do plan to treat myself with a chocolate bar, however. They sell 70%-85% chocolate at my grocery store! It keeps calling my name every time I pass it! But I resist. I think it would taste better once I get through Phase One of P90X though.

There is one thing I feel I am having possible trouble with through all of this. During this past month, I feel like I have been grazing more, but mainly on mixed nuts. Though I do have snacks in my plan, I find myself sneaking in a couple of nuts here and there. I am just not certain if I am actually hungry or if I am trying to make up for the sugary snacks I have taken out.

The thing about me is that I rarely ever *feel* hungry. I think I destroyed my stomach from an illness I had for 2 years in my teens, then I had an eating disorder in my early 20s. So stomach growling is an absolute rare occurrence! Weird, right!? So I am not sure how to really measure hunger. I have a pretty solid eating schedule, but with the added weight training from P90X3, I am just wondering if my body is just craving the extra protein.

Anyway, regardless of having a few extra calories in nuts, I am still proud of myself and what I have accomplished. I have honestly never felt better. I have had zero issues with bloating, which has helped flatten out my tummy a bit!

The top is before, the bottom is from the 22nd. I think there's a difference!

Who wouldn't want that, right?! Also, on the TMI end, I have become VERY REGULAR. Almost clockwork! Before, I was going once every few days and that's just not good for you!!!

My results just make me wonder what would happen after 2 months of being completely natural and healthy with my meals. So stay tuned! :)

What percentage of food do you eat that has added sugar? Do you look read your labels?

How dark do you like your chocolate?

How do you measure hunger?

When you crave certain foods, do you think your body is trying to tell you something or is it your mind? How can you tell the difference?

Let's be honest, are you a regular pooper? 

The Blizzard of 2016, Week In Review, What's to Come

As much as I wish my house was shielded from the wrath of Jonas, we were hit pretty hard.

A photo posted by Peter Szakacs (@szakacs.peter) on

The snow came down on Friday afternoon and dumped on us until late Saturday. Overall, we have over 2 feet of snow.

Because conditions were awful, I had to stay inside to run my 15 miler. I am sure it goes without saying that I did not want to run that far on the treadmill! But I tried to entertain myself with movies like Mary Poppins and Frozen.

Unfortunately something was up with my iTunes account and it would stop the movies 30 minutes in. So I resorted to Orange is the New Black.

After running a little over 10 miles, my treadmill stopped (it auto stops at 1:40:00) and I took the time to free my feet from their sweaty socks, chug water, and eat lunch. Within an hour, I was back at it again to finish out the remaining 5 miles.

In the end, I was satisfied that I was able to get through it. The treadmill destroyed my feet and they were uber sensitive for the remainder of the day. Anyone else have that problem after running for a long time on the treadmill?

I also got in my yoga workout. Wine included.

I skipped my planned P90X3 Dynamix workout because last week, it hurt my knee. I was having knee problems which were going away until I did this workout. So I will not be including it in my weekly plans for the time being.

Anyway...enough about last week...we're already in a new week! Let's move forward!

Here are the meals I've prepped for the week!

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

Food Plan
SUNDAY: Lentil Sweet Potato and Kale Soup  
MONDAY: Bow Ties with Tomato, Basil and Avocado Sauce - RW Meals on the Run 
TUESDAY: Taco Stuffed Zucchini Boats 
WEDNESDAY: Butternut Pasta Casserole 
THURSDAY: Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken 
FRIDAY: Homemade Pizza 
SATURDAY: Baked Spaghetti Squash and Cheese
I think I have a great lineup here. As I was prepping, everything looked super delicious and I couldn't decide which I wanted to have first in the week!

Luckily, we started with the soup! I use the word "luckily" because 1) it is super cold here and 2) it was delicious! I think we are off to a great start!

But what really got me excited as I prepped was Wednesday's Butternut Pasta Casserole. I prepared the creamy butternut sauce and OH. MY. was hard for me not to take spoonfuls of it.

I love cashews and butternut squash so with their powers combined, I was in heaven. I am thinking about using this in my own recipes in the future! Stay tuned!

So enough about food (I'm drooling!), let's talk about fitness for the week!

Workout Plan
Yoga With Adriene
Ab Ripper X3
6.2 Mile Run
Yoga With Adriene
Total Synergistics
Yoga With Adriene
5 Mile Run
Yoga With Adriene
The Challenge
Yoga With Adriene
5 Mile Run
Ab Ripper X3
Yoga With Adriene
Yoga With Adriene
10-12 Mile Run

This is my last week doing this plan. I will be moving out of phase one after this week and having a sort of rest/transitional week. This will also be my last week doing Yoga with Adriene. The 30 days ends on Sunday :o( . I need to find something to replace the yoga, so send me your suggestions on yoga videos! I may end up doing her 30 days from last year.

This week also has a shorter long run. I'm letting my body recover a little and then kicking it back up again next week! I've really had to fudge this marathon plan since Peter and I were injured early in the game, but we are catching up!

So that's all I got! It's going to be a great week...especially in the food department! I can't wait to share the outcome!

How did you survive snowstorm Jonas? Did you end up running/working out?

What are your go-to shows/movies when running on the dreadmill?

Who has some delicious meals prepped up for the week? Share your recipes!!!

Any youtube Yoga recommendations?

The Results are Showing & Winter Storm Blues

So let me just say that these P90X3 workouts are delicious! I cannot stress enough how awesome it is to have an effective 30 minute workout in the morning. When I was doing P90X, it was harder for me to wake up in the morning and find motivation to do an hour+ long workout. So I have had no problems showing up to my living room at 5 am to get my workouts in.

I have also started to notice some changes!!!

Getting closer and closer to that goal every day!

I also purchased the Hammer & Chisel Challenge Pack, which is another Beachbody Program.

After my 90 Day Program with Tony, I want to switch it up to this. The results I have seen from others has really caught my attention and I figured, why not!

Anyway, enough about Beachbody! On to running!

Last night, I went on a group run with CFAR. Though I try not to run outside in anything under 30 degrees to avoid Raynaud's flare ups, I decided to brave the 20 degree temps. It was the last opportunity I had to run outside before snowstorm Jonas so I figured I would just deal with it if a flare up occured. I did make an effort to layer up. I had an Under Armor mock under a long sleeved tee, then a jacket to top it off. I also wore two pairs of gloves and a heavy hat. I was certain I was going to sweat.

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

I ran in the back of the pack, which was faster than what I have been running. In fact, I was able to finish just under 45 minutes! Now my times are starting to look somewhat decent for myself!

Peter on the other hand kicked my ass for the very first time! He beat me by about 2.5 minutes and shattered his best 5 mile time by 3 minutes.

A photo posted by Peter Szakacs (@szakacs.peter) on

I was proud of him. I knew that he had it in him and I knew that there would be a day he would outrun me. *sigh*

Shortly following the run, my Raynaud's flare up began. Though we had the heat in the car on full blast, I was so tense from the cold and my fingers were in and out of having full circulation. When I got home, I went straight to the shower near tears. I put the water on the hottest setting and just stood in there for about 20 minutes. The hot water dried out my skin and it started to peel. But anything less  than scolding left me shivering.

I feel it is getting worse with every day, but I'm working through it the best I can. I scheduled a doctor's appointment, but I can't get in until March. It is pretty ridiculous if you ask me! Still, I waited this long to have it evaluated and I know that it needs addressed. I will wait it out and suck it up.

But speaking of miserable cold, we are now in full blizzard mode.

I hope all of you who are in this storm's path are staying safe! Hope you all retain your electricity and keep warm! We are just gonna chill and watch movies all weekend...oh and manage 15 milers in between. :)

Have a  good, safe weekend, all!

Which Beachbody fitness plan has interested you in the past?

What clothes do you depend on to keep you warm on your cold outdoor runs? Please include brand specifics so I can check em out!!! :)

Anyone dealing with the snow storm? Running outside or in?

My Love/Hate Relationship with the Treadmill

I hit the treadmill again last night. When temps begin to dip into the 20s, I make the call to stay indoors. My poor hands and feet would have a Raynaud's attack if I were to brave the cold. This wasn't always the case in the past, but it has gotten worse over the years.

Last night, I had a flare up just from simply turning the shower handle since it was cold.

So because of my Raynaud's, I've had to swallow back my negative feelings towards the treadmill and just deal with it. I guess I should at least be happy I have another option rather saying "Screw it!"

I truly wanted to skip last night, but my goals and obligations weigh heavier than my desire to be lazy. I need the cardio to balance my strength training so I can achieve my goal body. So I have been constantly reminding myself that the hardest part is just getting dressed, showing up, and getting started. Whatever follows is better than nothing at all.

This brought on some major deja vu. I've done this before. I train myself for these spring marathons and wonder why I subject myself to it every year. I live on the northeast coast where cold and snow are bound to happen! Yet here I am, training for my 3rd spring marathon and pissed off at the fact that winter came yet again. I must experience memory loss in the fall when I sign myself up for these things.

Anyway, during my run I turned on "Orange is the New Black." I have barely made a dent into the 3rd season so I figured this would be my treadmill show. I kept my pace slow and didn't bother with inclines. Again, I was in lazy girl mode so the fact that I even started running was good enough for me.

Not my best time recently, but I'll take it. I know I will power through a good run Thursday when I meet up with the CFAR team. It will make up for this slow one.

In addition to my running, I put in a yoga workout. Though I felt out of sync and my dog crushed my hand in the beginning, I am still glad I did it.

A video posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

It was not my best practice, but at least I gave my mind and body a 30 minute treat. I'm hoping for a better practice this evening.

Anyway, the snow is still in the forecast for the I decided my forecast sounded a lot better.

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

I am pretty sure my 15 miler will be on the treadmill. That's equal to about 3 Orange is the New Black Episodes. Doesn't really sound so bad when you put it in those terms, right?

For those of you in the storm's path, be safe and run smart!

What's your temperature tolerance before hitting the treadmill?

What TV shows or movies are your favorite to watch while 'milling it?

Are you in snowstorm Jonas' path?

My First Yoga Class

As promised, I am going to share with you my first experience in a LIVE yoga class! That's right! I managed to work up the courage to attend a public yoga experience.

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

The instructor, Willow, and I met through previous races and group runs. I have always wanted to take a class from her because she really knows her stuff, but I would usually let the opportunities pass me by.

That is, until now! Well...not the fart thing, but following through with my goals. In 2016, I want to be more outgoing and try new things and although yoga isn't necessarily new to me, doing it in a public setting is. I really need to break out of this shell I grew on my back!

Anyway, when I first walked in, I was immediately intimidated by two yogis who were already showing off their moves. They were obviously more experienced than myself, but I couldn't help but compare my amateur self to them. I mean, I felt a bit silly sitting silently on my mat doing neck rolls next to a woman was able to stretch her leg straight up by her head! I couldn't be like, "Well, feast your eyes on my fierce neck circles!"

When the class began, we cycled through some poses I knew and have done before (thanks Yoga with Adriene)! In fact, I felt that Willow's teaching methods were very similar to Adriene's and it made me feel more comfortable and confident. I have been doing this in my living room for weeks now!

A video posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

Sure, my poses have a long way to go, but I felt that I was doing half decent. It made me realize that I have been making progress. Doing yoga every day was paying off in this practice.

After the class, I realized that yoga was no longer a workout. Instead, it was a habit. I look forward to it like I do my afternoon tea or my evening snack. It relaxes me. It challenges me. It just gives both my body and mind a treat. Though I am not certain if I will do yoga every day after I'm finished with my 30 day challenge, I sure as hell know I will do it more often than I used to!

Have you ever taken yoga class?

This Week's Agenda

I've been looking forward to this week since I hopped on board with food prepping. Because we never halve meals to accommodate our family of two, we always get tons of leftovers. However, instead of trying to eat them all within the week, we recently started to freeze them back until we had enough to get us both through a whole week of eating.

That week is this one! I only had to pick up some veggies, milk, and cheese from the store and we are good to go! So our meals will be leftovers from the past 3 weeks. Yay for the break from prepping and cooking!

Now on to the fitness schedule!

The plan pretty much matches what I did last week with exception of the long distance run.

Workout Plan
Yoga With Adriene
Ab Ripper X3
6.2 Mile Run
Yoga With Adriene
Total Synergistics
Yoga With Adriene
5 Mile Run
Yoga With Adriene
The Challenge
Yoga With Adriene
5 Mile Run
Ab Ripper X3
Yoga With Adriene
Yoga With Adriene
15 Mile Run

I've already finished Sunday and Monday's plan, but I still have yet another yoga workout this evening. I have never been to a live yoga class, so it will be an experience to say the least. I worry that I will make a total ass out of myself, but we will get to that one tomorrow!

I am also a little worried about the long run to come. We are supposed to have a snowstorm Friday into Saturday, which could potentially be heavy.

This is why I have told myself never to train for a spring marathon in the past. Yet, here I for a spring marathon.

I need to move to California. That way I don't have to suffer through snowstorms or Raynaud's. Too bad my job doesn't transfer or accept a doctor's note about why I need to work remotely in CA. Still, it doesn't stop me from looking at houses. *sigh*

Anyway, that's my upcoming week in a nutshell! Posting this will help me stay accountable to what I planned.

What is on your workout agenda this week?

What are your thoughts about training in the snow?

Do you freeze back meals? 

Have you ever been to a live yoga class? What would you tell a first timer like me?

Weekly Recap: The Food, Fitness, and Results!

Wow! Another successful week is over and I am very proud of myself.

Although I have been OD'ing on nuts, I have stayed very healthy with all meals, including snacks. I have also attended every workout that I planned and killed each of them! So let me rewind through the highlights of my week and what I accomplished! :)

Food Recap
I stuck with the meal plan I shared with you last week! Leftovers from dinners served as lunches the next day and all that remained was frozen. Here were some of our favs from the week!

Quinoa Pizza Casserole - Who would have thought that soaked cashews blended up would be so YUM!

Spiced Chickpeas with Spinach - We've had this before and LOVED it. So we had to have it yet again! I recommend this meal to everyone!

Pesto Chicken Bake - I personally didn't take a picture (I was really hungry), but you can surely check out the deliciousness from SkinnyTaste. And her pesto is to die for!

Chipotle Cocoa BBQ Burgers - This was kind of a cheat meal because it did have sugar in the BBQ sauce, but I made sure it was as minimal as possible and used less than what was called for. I also didn't put in as many of the chipotle peppers. Next time I won't do it with the adoba sauce. Oops!

Picture from Runner's World Meals on the Run

Ours didn't look like the above, which is why I took their picture. :)

The other meals weren't bad, BUT they didn't really tickle our tastebuds like we would have liked so we will not be adding them into our list of meals to make again.

So what did I notice after week 3 of my clean up? Well my skin is clearer...

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

I have officially stopped wearing my Arbonne Mineral Powder because I don't feel like I need it. I still moisturize on a daily basis because it is winter and I dry up like a raisin. But if I don't have to wear makeup, I'm not going to. I've honesty just been sticking with mascara and lip gloss.

I also reintroduced alcohol to my life. I did my research on which wines had the least amount of residual sugar and chose a pinot grigio. I was surprised that even though it contained < .5 grams of residual sugar per serving, it tasted like dessert to me! I guess that's what happens when you don't eat sweets and remove added sugar!

Fitness Recap
Like the meal plan, I was able to stick to the fitness plan as well. I started my modified P90X3 schedule this week so I could start building towards that muscular build I have always wanted.

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

My thoughts so far is that I need heavier weights. Though my 5 and 10 pound dumbbells serve well for some of the moves, but I feel like it's nothing for others. As I mentioned in a previous post, I just went ahead and bought the Bowflex dumbbells and am awaiting their arrival.

I also am awaiting for my equalizer bars to arrive. I bought these primarily to serve as a way to be a substitute to a pull up bar. I hope that my purchases will allow me to really excel at P90X3 as we continue.

I also stuck to my running routine. I run 4 days a week compared to 5 like I used to. I feel that with the cross-training, 5 days may be over-doing it. Besides, I like giving my body a break after each weekday run. It has really helped me keep from burn out. This week I ran 6.2, 5, 5, and 13.1!

A photo posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

Finally, I have been killing it at Yoga Camp. Sure, my moves may not scream "I'm a yoga pro" but the fact that I do show up to my mat on a daily basis is something I am really proud of! Today was Day 15 so that means I am halfway through my streak. Awesome!

A video posted by Lindsey (Run Freckles Run) (@lindseyszakacs) on

So after a week of weights, running, and yoga, do I notice a difference? Well, I'm sore if that counts. But no physical changes regarding muscle growth. Of course, a week of P90X3 is not going to show through after 1 week. So I will more than likely do a 4 week check in on this side of things, or unless I notice changes occurring.

Anyway, I am already into my next week but I will share more about that tomorrow! Stay turned to see what's ahead! :)

What yummy, healthy meals did you make this past week?

What changes have you noticed when you eat healthier?

What exercises did you get into? 
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