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I was supposed to be de-stashing.

Instead I bought these:

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They were cheap. I couldn’t resist. The patterns were $1 each. How could I resist?

I have plans, though. Big plans and small plans. Plans that include these patterns, and plans for THIS:

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(Photo and instructions from http://www.mesewcrazy.com/2013/08/running-belt-diy.html)

I’m using the grey swimsuit fabric above, with a fun patterned teal elastic. I think it’ll be awesome, if I ever get a chance to work on it. Priorities, right?

 

 

 

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Orange Theory Fitness

So, a few weeks ago I joined a fitness club of sorts. I mentioned it in passing, but haven’t had any time to go into it with more depth.

Unlike a gym, OTF has scheduled one-hour classes with limited space that are run by two fitness trainers. Classes aren’t over 24 people in size, and they are ideal at around 18. They use a pretty basic High Intensity Interval Training method, combined with heart rate monitors. The class is divided into two groups, one on treadmills and one doing circuits of strength-training floor exercises with a rowing machine. The heart rate monitors show you your current heart rate, at what (approximate) percentage of maximum heart rate you are at, and your approximate calories burned as you go. The “Theory” behind Orange Theory Fitness is that by spending 12-25 minutes at or above 85% max heart rate, you will trigger the longer-lasting afterburn that HIIT is known for. There is nothing revolutionary about it. It is basic, it is based on personal level, and for me, it is worth every penny spent (and it costs a pretty penny compared to a lot of gyms out there).

I had a 24 hour gym membership a few years ago. It cost me $24 a month, and allowed me access to most of their gyms, including the ones with pools. I never went. Every month that passed without me going, I told myself, “well, that is like two movie tickets. It isn’t THAT much. I’ll make up for it next month.” I never did. I’m pretty sure the most I went was four times in a month.

After having my son, I prepaid for 8 classes at a mommy-and-baby yoga class locally. My husband works a lot, and my family is in another state, so physical activities that allow me to take my baby always sound appealing. The problem was he became an excuse to not go, and since the prepaid classes were EVEN CHEAPER than 24 hour fitness, it really didn’t seem like a big deal if it took me longer to get through them. I went 4 times in 8 months. I officially had to stop going because my son could walk and was getting into too much trouble for me (Or the other mommies) to get a good yoga workout. Plus, yoga doesn’t really build endurance or help you lose weight, which are two things I need from an exercise program.

OTF costs enough that I am freaking out a little about the classes I have missed over the past two weeks from being sick. My membership is for 8 classes a month, but unused classes don’t rollover. I’m pretty sure I am not going to be able to have my hubby watch my son that much next week so I can cram in 4+ classes. The nice thing about this financial guilt is it is very motivating. I was motivated to run by my 5k run date, and I am motivated to go to OTF by the pricetag. While I am there, though, I love it. I really do.

First of all, I love that I don’t have to think about anything. I am told what to do, and when. I love that there are two trainers, so I never have to worry about form when doing any exercises. The second my form wavers, I have a trainer coming to assist, and giving me feedback to keep at it. I’m too busy working to pay attention to other people, which in turn means I am not self-conscious because everyone else is too busy to be looking at me. When I sprint on the treadmill, and I hit a new personal record, no one rolls their eyes that my speed was 2 mph less than the person next to me. And, no one notices that my shirt rode up and my squishy, stretch-mark scarred belly is showing. No one cares.

I also love that I have access to things that I normally wouldn’t have access to, equipment-wise. I’m sure some gyms have all of the equipment OTF has, but I haven’t personally seen this, and if I did, I wouldn’t know how to use any of it. In the handful of classes I have been to, I have used the usual equipment (treadmill, rower, free weights, etc.) but I have also used a Bosu and TRX straps. I think that is pretty awesome.

Will I stay at OTF forever? No, I can’t afford that. Will I make the most of it while I am a member? You’d better believe I will! If you live near me and want to try it for one free class, come workout with me. If you aren’t local, they’ll let you try a free class at any of their locations. I’m a fan.

WP_20140302_002 There is, after all, a smile on this post-workout face.


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My first 5k!

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After months of training, including a park run with my sister while visiting her out of state (and then managing to leave my jogging stroller behind, in that other state…), I can now say I have run my first ever 5K!

My two goals for it were to “run” the whole time, even if it would be faster to walk, and to complete it in under 40 minutes. With some amazing running buddies keeping me moving, and several motivational text messages (yes, I totally texted during a race, but for the record, I was just racing myself, and I did say they were MOTIVATIONAL texts), and my amazing husband and baby waiting for me at the finish line to cheer me on, I can say I MET BOTH OF THOSE GOALS. And, by 7 seconds, too! I’m really proud of myself.

Then I went to the grocery store, then I went home and showered, and then I went to a park and helped throw an amazing first birthday party for my son and his two baby friends. And I felt amazing and proud and like nothing could stop me.

And then I got sick. I think maybe my body was telling me I needed some rest. I’m just hoping to get my stroller and health back before it gets too warm to run for the summer. My next 5K is picked out for September!!


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Work Space!!!

So, everyone needs a place to get stuff done. I am certainly no exception. I live in a two story house with the master suite downstairs and two bedrooms with a bathroom upstairs. When we moved in, my husband claimed one of the upstairs rooms as his office, and we (shabbily) furnished the other room as a “guest” room. We live in a destination city, but we rarely get guests.

When our son was born a year ago, we decided we were far from comfortable having him sleep upstairs alone with us downstairs. Everything is downstairs. It is sort of like the upper story could be removed and we wouldn’t be effected, except that upstairs is literally the only storage in the house. There is one “utility” closet downstairs, and the closet in our room, but that is it. The kitchen is so small, we have extra appliances and oversized items stored, in plain sight, on top of the limited cabinets. After a year of trying to work on sewing projects in various rooms based on my son’s sleep schedule, and carrying the fabric and notions from room to room, I had a little breakdown.

Everyone needs a space to get stuff done. Everyone.

Sorry guests, but you will now be sharing a room with my sewing supplies. I am building an awesome desk with storage and I couldn’t be more excited!

Before I show you the mock up of my new work space, I need to share my current situation, if for no other reason than to vent. I think you will be as excited as I am after seeing these pictures!

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This is how my fabric was stored: in a set of hanging closet organizers. I have Pinterest to thank for that idea. Unfortunately, not all of my stash fit into the two, and what was crammed in was a little heavy…

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So this happened. The top ripped straight through. Obviously that isn’t practical for storage, and with a toddler wandering around, it isn’t safe either.

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So, now, my entire stash, and all patterns, books, and notions, are in the guest room that will soon be more organized and useful.

Across the room from that mess (pretty much where I was standing to take this sad picture) is a blank, windowed wall, that will soon house something along the lines of this:

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It will actually all be wider than this, when complete. The desktop is 80″ x 24″, the upper shelves are almost a foot almost square, and the lower cabinets are about two feet wide, with shelves inside. If this isn’t enough space, I think it means it is time to finish some projects, so I can destash. (As if I won’t just buy more fabric along the way. HA!)

I can’t wait!!!

 

 


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Slow Progress.

I have always been a physically strong person, even when out of shape. At a smidge below 5’5″, My lean body mass was 130 last fall, before I started working out. To be at a recommended 20% body fat, I was supposed to weigh in at about 160 lbs. It isn’t surprising that I also fall into the category of women who “bulk up” when doing a lot of strength-building exercises.

I have always, also, had a tendency to gain weight quickly, and always before losing any.

I guess it’s no surprise that I magically gained 4 pounds last week, and the thighs of my jeans are tighter, despite a smaller waist and no changes to diet. The change is a hike with my family and two Orange Theory Fitness classes. It’s a good thing I’m doing this more for fitness and health than numbers on a scale…