Well the Rest of Fall Quarter and Winter Break

Apparently, since I dropped off the face of the blogging world during the latter half of fall quarter, I feel I should give an update.  I tend to ramble in my blogs, so I am going to try and keep it quick and simple (we’ll see how that goes).

So first, I feel like I need to explain my absence of postings.  I feel actually bad.  But I am attributing this to two things.  One, my job has gotten more intense, so the adjustment of working and going to school was taking it’s toll on my free time…sort of.  Though this hasn’t been the hardest quarter I have had(ish) academically, I just lost all energy to do anything once I got home from either work or class.  The main reason I took summer classes was to make sure that I kept on going with the program.  I honestly thought if I had any kind of mental break that I would not return to the program.  I am starting to realize that I should have actually taken the summer off.  I think without having time to rest and soothe my brain, it seeped into fall quarter and made me way lazier than I wanted to be.  I may go further into this in another blog, but I don’t want to give any particular advice on taking summer classes (if able based on internship location).  However, I only had to take 2 classes for the fall and only have to take 2 in the spring.  Technically I only have to take 2 in the winter, but all 3 are required so that should be fun for my life.

Ok back to not rambling. Though I felt kind of lazy in how I was approaching my academics last quarter I ended up doing really well.  I got a 3.77 for the quarter.  I was extremely proud of my internship paper.  With writing and appendices, it was approximately 140 pages!  I’ve never wrote something that extensive by myself in my life.  I was not really sure about how to approach it so, once again I need to make a note to myself to refer to this blog for future material.

As far as my winter break goes, it has actually been “meh. ” Since I work for a college, as SOON as I go on break, I get swamped with hiring for instructors to teach in the winter quarter.  I thought I would get some kind of break from it all with my academic break, but to no avail.

Outside of work, I have been using the time not in classes to work out more.  I am participating in a “Maintain Not Gain” wellness challenge at Columbus State.  Between the week of Thanksgiving, until the end of the first week of the New Year, the goal for employees is not to lose any weight but maintain your weight.  Between all the gorging people do at Thanksgiving, various December holidays, New Years, and holiday potlucks/parties in between, it is pretty hard to do.  I’ve taken the challenge a little bit more seriously, and have been trying to lose weight.  I’ve been getting rave reviews on my progress, and can’t wait to see my results for my final weigh in!

The other thing I’ve been doing is watching Switched at Birth.  It is show obviously on ABC Family.  SUCH A GOOD SHOW…I cannot wait until the winter premiere.

Ok that’s about it.  Just for memory sake, I am going to outline future topics for me to write about for memory purposes (and for you guys to hold me to later)!

1. New Year’s Resolutions

2. To take or not take summer classes

3. Writing your internship paper

4. Maintain Not Gain results and my new found healthiness

5. The sanity I achieve from my cable TV

6. Classes

7.  My planned winter quarter study structure

That’s seven topics and I am sure more will pop up, so I should be good for almost all of winter!  I’m not going to lie that I kind of was struggling with topics last quarter, so I am glad I was able to brainstorm some while writing this winter break blog.

Happy Holidays Everyone!


PS-I wrote this last week and never actually published it so by the way my holidays were very happy!

Staying Fit

I’m writing this right now because I have yet to find the motivation for working out today.  I’ve already summarized the chapters for my upcoming Staffing quiz, returned e-mails, Facebooked and read my blogs.  The only distraction left is this.  But I’m hoping that writing about this will help motivate me!

I’ve been hearing a lot of talk in the halls and classrooms of Gerlach Hall lately about how people think they’re so fat, out of shape, or not at their target fitness level yet.  Even though it’s been rainy and cold and nasty out for the last several weeks, Spring Fever has set in, and people are thinking about their beach bods.  I know I am.  My favorite line from the Fox comedy, American Dad, is “I’m straight skinny, but I’m gay fat.”

So, how do you find the time to work, study, go to class, and still find time for your fitness?  I have no idea, because I haven’t quite struck that balance, but here are my tips:

1. Don’t eat after class.  I know it’s tempting.  But eating a full meal, like I used to do, at 9:30 after getting home from class is awful for your body and your goals.  Bring food to class with you, and eat then, not later.

2. Don’t eat out.  This is a tough one too, but when you eat out, you have no control over your caloric intake or the ingredients.  That Tai’s chicken sure tastes good, but the sauce is full of sugar, oil and chemicals.  I make three days worth of meals every Sunday evening.  It’s a good way for me to end my weekend on a nice mellow note, I blast some music, get lost in the process and I get full control over what’s going into my body.  I bring these meals with me to class and the temptation to stuff my face afterward is gone.

3. Choose healthy snacks and stop drinking soda, even if it’s diet.  There are studies that show that diet sodas can actually contribute to weight gain and make your body process sugars differently in other foods you eat.  I strictly drink water and for snacks, I either eat rice cakes or almonds.  Sometimes 100 calorie granola bars as a treat.  Keep ONE small portion on hand for class for when you’re really really tempted and your self control has been battered by a seriously long lecture.

4. Cut back on that booze and carbs.  I’ll admit, I love a glass of wine after class.  That paired with the full meals I was eating was wreaking havoc on my body.  I’m not saying totally abstain, but find another stress reliever for the end of the night.  Cut back on those carbs too.  If you’re sitting on the sofa with a belly full of carbs, you’re in trouble.  I’ve been substituting sweet potatoes for bread or rice.  Just wash, wrap in saran and nuke for 6 minutes and you’ve got a sweet, tasty, filling substitute.  If you really can’t give up carbs, try quinoa.  It’s similar to rice in carb values and texture, but is a complete protein, the only one of its kind in the plant world.  It’s also nice and filling.

5. I’ll admit, I’m the worst about this one.  Drink lots of water.  When you’re dehydrated, your body’s metabolism goes on the fritz and you start to retain water.  I add a splash of lemon to mine to liven it up.

6. Work out.  Duh.  This is a tough one when it comes to time constraints.  I normally don’t get a workout in on Monday’s and Wednesday’s because I have an earlier class, but I try.  Get a few in at least every week.  Get P90X and some weight bands and you have an instant gym in any of your rooms and a very effective, 45 minute workout.  Run up the stairs of Gerlach with your abs contracted, two steps at a time.  Jump rope every day.  It’s a full body workout and you can burn as much as 15 calories per minute.  It’s not much, but it’s something.

7. Have something to work toward.  For me, I’m going to Orlando in 15 days where I will be lounging around pools and beaches for 5 glorious days.  That’s my goal and it’s kept me motivated.  If you’re not heading anywhere for the break, try thinking about a target waist size or shirt size.  (Remember, losing pounds doesn’t always mean getting fit.)

8. EAT.  This seems contradictory to a lot of people, but starving yourself will kill your metabolism.  Eat a large, healthy lunch, don’t forget breakfast, and snack throughout the day.  This will keep your metabolism roaring like the furnace that it should be.  Also allow yourself one “bad day” a week, where you just get a ton of calories.  This will prevent your metabolism from plateauing and is a good way to celebrate your day off from your work outs and reward yourself for your hard work.

Those are my tips.  And now it’s time for me to go work out and put my money where my mouth is.

PS – I dropped two waist sizes in three weeks following this plan

Zumba Zumba

Because I didn’t write a blog last week, this week there is a BONUS blog from me!

This past Sunday, I tried Zumba for the first time. I had heard from friends and family that it is so much fun, exhausting, but it really is a fun workout. And for the longest time, I had been so freaked out to try it that I put it off and put off. Well finally, in an effort to prepare for the Fisher 5k (preview and advertisement for next week’s blog) and with the encouragement from my friends I decided to get up the nerve to do it.

To figure out how I was going to try Zumba, I did some research online as to where they have classes, times, and prices. I heard and somewhat knew that at the RPAC (the most amazing university gym in the country) they offer all different types of fitness classes. You can either pay per class, which is $5 per class, or $50 for an entire quarter and you can go to any class you want at any time. These are prices for students who are currently paying tuition in that quarter. I have yet to figure out what will happen in the summer if I want to take classes…. However, this, for me, is an EXCELLENT price and they also offer so many different classes at pretty convenient times too.

Anyway, back to Zumba… my friend and I went to the class on Sunday from 5:30-6:30pm. All you have to do, if you are paying per class, is go to the Welcome Center at the RPAC, then go downstairs to the South Gym. They have different instructors depending on the day, but the lady that taught our class was named Amanda and she was AWESOME. She told us at the beginning that if we couldn’t hear her, to just put our hands to our ears so she could see and she would turn her mic up. She did the moves with us the whole time and she would always show you what to do first, before we actually started the song. What this means is that it was really easy to pick up, especially considering it was my friend’s and my first time. Of course, we stood in the back, but neither of us felt left behind or that we weren’t capable of doing whatever it was we were supposed to be doing.

As far as the actual workout, it is INTENSE. It is all cardio, although, you can add weights if you want to. You are constantly bouncing on your feet, jumping, and moving your hips. It certainly lives up to its’ “fitness party” tagline. The music is played pretty loud, which is fun (way too much fun), and you incorporate dance moves into the cardio routine, based on the music. The music is a mix of reggae ton, hip hop, Latin, and pop music.

I cannot say enough about Zumba. I’ve never thoroughly “enjoyed” working out unless it was for a sport, but this is so much fun! It’s a great way to get out and relieve some stress, especially on Sundays, it is a perfect way to start the week!