6 Tips for a Workout Newbie

Hello beautiful souls,

The other day I was coming back from the gym and a light switched in my brain. Or maybe it was the rush of endorphins running through my body. I don’t think I can pin point it. All I know is that I wanted to share with the world how I started this interesting journey of working out on a regular basis. Because here’s a little secret (that everyone knows): You will feel ten times more amazing after working out than how you felt before. TRUTH.

Before we get into the specifics, I want to give you a bit of a background on me and my health state prior to being conscious about it. I started gaining weight when I was about 9 years old. Which meant that during most of my primary school days and all of my secondary education (which would be middle school in the United States) I was overweight. Not fun for anyone. Nevertheless, thank God for puberty. At least in my case it really was a blessing. During the summer break, right before starting highschool, my body changed and I lost a bunch of weight without really doing anything different. I was never the sporty kind or an athletic girl, so I never had a fit body.

Therefore, and despite that marvelous moment of hormonal craziness, the weight came back when I started college. Yes, the Freshman 15 made an appearance in my life. Times three. For some people, that may not be a lot of kilograms, but for a 1.57 m (~5’1″) woman, it is a lot. What a joy!

WOW that was a long intro!… Sorry about that. But I do believe it’s important to know the history to understand the present.  

After living with the extra weight for about 4 or 5 years I made a rather quick decision one day. I will start exercising. No excuses. No workout buddies required. No promises to anyone. No nothing. Just me and my brain deciding to join the gym and work out. One day I said it and the next day I joined in. Man, that was a very, VERY, difficult first week. There was a lot of pain, suffering, many aches, sweat and even tears. And of course, a bunch of thoughts of this is not for me, it’s very difficult, I can’t do it, I will die!… With all that in mind, here’s my first piece of advice:

1. Do not over think

Don’t give your brain the chance to make that dreaded pro/con list about starting a workout routine. Because rest assure, it will find a reason why it is not a good idea to do it. Instead, take the plunge, just go over there and have fun at it. Take it for what it is, a new experience. It’s OK to suck at first.

It is never easy  to start a new adventure. It takes courage, determination and heart. But once you endure the hardest part, the rest of it is truly magnificent. 

I believe that applies to working out just as much as any other adventure in life. For me, exercising was not about having a thin figure or to be prettier, have a smaller waistline or loose X amount of weight. For me, it was about being fit. I  wanted to stop feeling sluggish, slow and heavy. I did not like the lack of stamina and energy.

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So my second piece of advice is:

2. Set a realistic end goal

I believe that one of the key factors that helped me in my path towards better health is that I decided that my end goal would be to get healthier. That’s it. It is easier to achieve better health just by moving more everyday, than wanting to lose 5 kg in one month.

By doing this, I did not have to convince myself everyday to go, because I already wanted to do it. The sense of heaviness became smaller each day that passed. I was hooked!

3. Try different things until you find a workout that is right FOR YOU

There are a number of options out there. Going to the gym, having a personal trainer, running outside, working out at home or taking classes like Sumba, kickboxing or Pilates. I will not list all of them because I probably don’t know every option out there. Instead, do a web search of the alternatives closer to you and start from there. Each person is good at something, and each feels good by doing something in particular. Find what tickles your fancy. It’s fun!

4. Set a goal of workouts per week

I still remember hearing people say that you had to do five workouts every week in order to be fully committed. That if you wanted to see results you had to be hardcore and do it seven times a week for best results. What a load of BS. That is not true! You don’t have to over work your body to get great results. You don’t need to kill yourself in the gym everyday to be in the right path. You have to find out what feels right FOR YOU. Pay attention to your body and set a personal goal for you. For me, it was at least three times a week. With that, I felt like I was on the health path that best served me and my fitness end goal.

5. Wear workout clothes that make you feel confident in your own body

This may sound like and obvious one, but for some reason not everyone gives it the attention it needs. For example, I believe that wearing pants that are tight and don’t let everything jiggle is important. I enjoy looking at my fun colored sneakers in the mirror when I’m taking a Pilates class. I love wearing comfortable sports bras that give me freedom to move freely during my exercises. It does matter, so choose what works for you. You will thank yourself later.

6. Give yourself credit every time you do a workout 

I think this is the easiest one of them all. Of course, you are going to be so happy after a workout because you did it that you will look at yourself in the mirror and think “I’m proud of myself for doing this”. Never fails! I do not know anyone that after a workout has said they wished they hadn’t done it. It’s always a rush and a sense of accomplishment. So give yourself the much deserved TLC and pad in the back. YOU DID IT!

I hope today’s post inspire you in some way to go after what you want. If not, I hope you at least enjoyed it. If you have any comments, please let me know =) Best of luck in your adventures. And remember:

to-do

With love,

Ale

My favorite healthy dishes

Hello beautiful people!

After yesterday’s post I decided to focus on what I do love about good healthy choices, so I’m showing you some of my favorite dishes.

Welcome to a new day in my life. As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve been so busy running around chasing this dream of mine, that I haven’t really had time to fully commit myself to writing. This is me trying to hehe. Because I like to write. Especially when it comes to the things that make me happy. And let me tell you, lately I have been giving SO many chances to be happy that my cheeks are tired from all the smiling.

But as usual I’m moving away from what I want to write. What inspires me about a healthier lifestyle is the beautiful colors that are created with each dish. It truly is like a work of art in a way. I love its beauty, colors, benefits, how healthy it is and of course how good it tastes. So here they are:

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Mexican squash noodles with tomato, basil, onion “sauce”, extra virgen olive oil and broccoli sprouts

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Homemade granola… still drooling sorry heheh. It has oats, almonds, sesame seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, coconut oil, almond butter and a bit of raw honey. Recipe credit form this lovely lady: HealthNut Nutrition

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Orange peppers stuffed with chickpea and fresh veggies mash

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My version of tostadas using black bean hummus, cucumbers, spinach and avocado on a baked sprouted grain tortilla

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Gluten free pasta with sauteed veggies and a side of chickpea/spinach mash

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Mexican squash noodles with beet sauce

These are just a few. Sorry for the picture quality. I promise I will get better!

Have a good one people.

With love,

Ale

Giving it a second thought

Hello there reader,

I’ve been hesitant about writing this post because it kind of contradicts what I said in my last blog about rosacea and the alkaline diet. Many things have happened since that post. I came back to Mexico, I went to Mexico city to the Swedish Embassy as part of my whole migration process (YAY!!!!) and my boyfriend came to visit me to spend the summer with me.. So yeah, things can get pretty out of hand with everything that’s happening in my life. And sometimes, circumstances don’t present opportunities to make good and healthy food choices.

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Catedral Metropolitana de la Ciudad de Mexico

2016-06-22 13.01.08.jpgTogether once again!

On top of that, I’ve been in a rollercoaster of emotions, thoughts and adventures with myself, my family/friends and my boyfriend. It’s amazing having him with me once again. But again, eating the healthiest does not become a priority in such cases. We’re both trying our best to make smart choices when it comes to food (most of the time), because I know first hand what it can do when I do it right. However, there’s a part of me that’s conflicted with the whole giving up almost everything that means so much to me. The small things in life that matter to me. I’m a foodie, what can I say?

I guess this post is about just that. Trying to figure out where the balance is. The balance between happiness and health. I said it, happiness. Because food and everyday rituals have that power. At least in my life.

For instance and first of the list: coffee. For years now, I’ve considered a morning cup of coffee like ONE OF the greatest pleasures in my life. There’s something special about it. Its smell, darkness and flavour. Needless to say, I used to drink mine black with no sugar added (That’s how much I love coffee!).

Secondly, alcohol. White wine in particular. For me, white wine is one of those things that completes a nice relaxing evening in. Watching a movie with a snack and a chilled glass of white wine…yuuummm. Oh! man those were the days…

To sum up, those two are included in every top 5 list of foods to avoid when you suffer from rosacea *heart shatters*

Because of that reason, and others I tried going all out with my eating habits and change them completely. I took all the recommendations, supplements, new foods and left out every single food/habit that “isn’t good” and incorporated what is good. Conclusion: it is not impossible. However, it gets tricky and complicated when I start having those quiet evenings or pampering sessions and all I can think of to top it all off is that glass of wine. Or when I’m out exploring a new town or having breakfast in a new place and I can smell the scent of fresh brewed coffee. It feels more like a heavy burden than an improved health matter.

It’s not about the cookies and cakes and sugar. It is not about doing it all the time and going crazy. It is only about those sparsely distributed underrated doses of happiness that brighten my day.  

What’s life about then? Is it not about enjoying it every chance you get? Even with the tiny details? I don’t like thinking that I’m depriving myself from the simple beauties and indulgences of life. Makes me sad to a certain extent. The more one reads and learns, the more complicated life gets.

What do you think? Tell me…

With love,

Ale

Another new adventure

Hello people out there! I want to talk about something different on this post. Because this is something very important for me:

Good, no not good, AMAZING Health.

I’ve been wanting to write about this new adventure I’m embarking on. No, it does not involve traveling, nor moving (just yet) or a new job. It is about the ever changing, constantly evolving process of self aware, mind and body health.

For a little over two years I have been struggling with rosacea. It started just before I went to sweden the first time and it progressed for the worse over the following months. The first thing I tried was, of course, a dermatologist. He immediately assured me I had rosacea and prescribed antibiotics, spot cream, heavy duty sunscreen and rosacea day cream. Long story short, nothing never made it go away.

As the time went on, I looked for natural remedies, different approaches for dealing with these issues, and bottom line was: There is NO CURE. Heartbreaking. Because as much as I am aware that it is something “superficial”; I could never explain what it’s like to have it. Always. No matter what. Not being able to feel comfortable in your own skin. What an awful idea.

A couple of weeks ago I came across a blog that mentioned the alkaline diet as a way of helping with rosacea. So I, of course, googled for hours about this new (to me) lifestyle. I found the book The pH Miracle Diet in my local library and checked it out the very next day.

I’m still reading it, because it’s FULL of amazing information that I want to fully understand. But just from reading the first 5 pages I was hooked! I decided to try it out. I mean, what’s the harm right?

I love cooking. Love traying new dishes and combinations. Love trying new things.

So now, I believe I’m finishing my second week with this new lifestyle and let me tell you I FEEL AMAZING! I started seeing results since day three of doing things differently. For example, I’ve been wanting to go out for morning walks for years now. I’ve tried it before but it never lasted. However, lately it is SO different. My body LITERALLY wakes me up in the morning, around 5:40-6:00 am. And I do mean wakes me up! I’m all ready for the day the minute my eyes are open. It is just wonderful. So I decided to start my day with a morning walk. I get to see the breathtaking sunrise as a wake up call. What a gift!

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Throughout the day I have more energy then ever before and my face is clearing up! I can see it already. It gives me hope that I’m doing what is right for me and my body and, as a plus, it’s giving me more self confidence 🙂

Seriously, living an alkalizing lifestyle is NOT a difficult thing. Cooking healthy and nutritious foods can be FUN! Make it fun! Experiment and be creative. I know I am trying to be hehehe… And it’s SOOOOO worth it!

So if in later posts you see my cooking inventions please, don’t judge  hehehe

I’ve been doing a lot of reading, checking out blogs, finding new recipes and just trying to be more educated on the subject.

This two websites are my favorite at the moment:

Live Energized

Alkaline Sisters

See you in my next one,

With love,

Ale