What I wore to Pure Barre:
Alo coated high-waisted leggings (medium)
Let’s Get Physical tank | Courtesy of Barre Socks (medium)
sportsbra – probably C9 from Target, I have 4 of these that I’ve had for 5 years
5:30 AM : alarm goes off, I snooze it for 8 minutes then get up. Take a CLEAN probiotic with water when I go downstairs, get the kettle ready for coffee and take Dagny outside.
6:00 AM : Get on the foam roller for 10-15 minutes, prepare my coffee (black, in a Chemex pour-over), and then sit down to write my morning pages (I use evernote for this on the computer, I tried writing by hand and my fingers cramped up LOL, and I write only what I have to say, I don’t try to do it for a certain number of minutes or whatever).
6:30 AM : Start working – eat half or 3/4 of a Macro bar for breakfast. I’m not usually very hungry in the morning – it depends on how much, what, and how late I ate dinner the night before, but I have to eat something before Pure Barre.
8:00 AM : leave for my 8:30 Pure Barre Class (it was platform – cardio – yesterday. oy)
9:45 AM : home from class, prepare my shake/smoothie: CLEAN nutritional vanilla shake mix, 1/2 tsp Ashwaghanda (because Gwyneth said so), 1/2 cup frozen organic blueberries, 1/2 cup coconut water, 1/2 cup water, and as much spinach as I can stuff in the container (it’s usually about as much as one of those prepared bags of spinach – 3-4 cups worth). I drink that and finish the rest of my bar. Then I work for several more hours.
Noon : ate half a vegan/gluten free italian cream cookie because I was hungry and it was there 🙁 – at this point, I would usually take Dagny out again for a few minutes (or as long as she wants, let’s be honest), but Leo was home so he did it. Took a shower, got dressed. Actually didn’t take a photo of my outfit, but I was wearing Frame Le Garcon jeans, Everlane muscle tank and Organic by John Patrick potato sweater.
1:00 PM : ate lunch – leftover dinner last night: roasted chicken (I just can’t eat very much meat, maybe half a serving) and cauliflower that I steamed and then tossed in melted butter (an indulgence, but it’s so good…we use kerrygold grass fed butter), with lots of curry powder and lime juice with some roasted cashews. For dessert, I ate an apple and drank some green tea.
Worked a bit more, then went to the post office. Came back and set up my “studio” for SLOWRE photo shoots in the garage and photographed new arrivals for today.
3:30 PM : snack – about 3/4 cup 2% Fage Greek yogurt with Apricot preserves (no sugar added, just fruit) and almond butter. SO GOOD. I try not to eat yogurt every day (I used to) but eat a little every once in awhile for the calcium, and fat. This combo, with a little fruit and the almond butter, keeps me very satisfied for several hours. It’s the kind of thing I eat and then completely forget about food for a long time, which is good, and not normal for me LOL. I usually get ravenous for something crunchy at around 5 – 5:30, but wasn’t yesterday.
4:30 PM : took Dagny out for a quick walk between rain showers
6:00 PM : started making dinner – this fish chowder. and ate around 7. The chowder was SO GOOD. Even Leo liked it, and he’s not easy to please. It was also super-easy to make, although I subbed lite coconut milk for regular and added a little vegetable broth. And used more fish (I used sustainable cod). Next time I make it I’ll make more because there wasn’t enough for both of us to have leftovers for lunch today 🙁
7:30 PM : ate 2-3 small squares of 70% dark chocolate and drank some peppermint tea. Sat down to watch an episode of the Grand Tour with Leo and tried to work on a crossword puzzle, failing miserably. I’ve been trying to work a crossword puzzle or REAL puzzle while I watch TV so I don’t fall asleep as soon as I sit down…it works, but I’m still ready for bed at 9.
9:00 PM : went upstairs, read for a bit, fell asleep 🙂 A few nights a week I soak in a hot bath with lots of epsom salts and read or watch something on Netflix.
So, that was my day yesterday. It’s a pretty typical day for me in terms of food/exercise, except when it’s sunny, I’ll take Dagny out at 4 for about a 45 minute walk. I go to a Pure Barre class at least 5 days a week, sometimes 6, and try to make Platform (the cardio class) two of those classes. I follow the teachers I like between the two studios I can go to with my membership, so I sometimes go to an 8:15 class, sometimes 8:30 and sometimes 9:45. I am most productive for work between 6:30 and 9:30 though, so I’m going to have to try and do exclusively 9:45 classes again, but that will mean having to “settle” for teachers I like less. Not a significant problem, but some teachers push me harder than others, and they choose more challenging routines, so I gravitate towards them.
Notes on food/nutrition, and some other things I eat during the week;
- Quinoa with dried fruit – I cook 1/4 cup quinoa with 3/4 cup coconut milk, some maple syrup, dried fruit (without added sugar), TONS of cinnamon, some ground cardamom, and cashews. I always want this to turn into a porridge, but it doesn’t, it’s more like regular quinoa with fruit in it. Not bad, but I’m going to keep trying to make it creamier.
- Lentil dal with sweet potatoes
- once a week for dinner I make these meatballs, but with grass-fed beef (because Leo won’t eat turkey). I serve them with Cauliflower or broccoli, or if I’m feeling fancy, I’ll cook some brown rice pasta and serve them with pasta and sauce
- I always have carrots cut up in the fridge (try cutting up “real” carrots instead of using baby carrots, it’s SO WORTH IT. They actually taste like carrots!) that I eat with hummus as a snack sometimes. I love the Whole Foods brand hummus. I’ve made hummus myself many times, but I like WF better! I also eat some Mary’s Gone Crackers with it, or maybe a rice cake.
- Vitamins/etc., that I take (the Prescription for Nutritional Healing is my BIBLE – right now I’m focusing on getting my body ready for going through menopause – not that I am, I’m just trying to get ready…): CoQ10, Calcium, multivitamin, Vitamin d, Evening primrose oil and a probiotic in the morning. I use Whole Foods brands for most of my supplements.
- In general, I try to eat as clean as possible, meaning I avoid dairy, corn, wheat, and sugar. I feel better when I avoid those things, especially corn – I don’t eat popcorn or chips & salsa anymore. And dairy + sugar is the END for me; that combo makes me feel horrible. Gluten in general doesn’t bother me much, in moderation, but I don’t eat it every day, at most I eat it once a week.
- Sometimes for lunch I’ll go to Panera and get their 1/2 modern greek quinoa salad with an asiago bagel. Only on platform days though, because whatever calories I eat I’ve already burned off. I tell myself that anyway LOL
- What seems to work best for me, is eating between 200-250 calories at a time. I just can’t seem to handle more than that on a regular basis. Specifically, I have a problem with too much protein or fat in one “meal.”
- sometimes I’ll make a “tea” of apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, hot water and TONS of ground cinnamon and ground ginger
- When I have these vegan/gluten-free/no sugar-added cookies, I’ll eat one or two with some tea in the afternoon for a snack. They’re SO GOOD, and only available at one grocery store here and I don’t go there that often.
- I always have a bar (any of the Macro Bar flavors are good) with me for “emergencies” because I tend to get hangry and I won’t just eat whatever
- my biggest “treat” is NadaMoo “ice cream” and I usually will buy a pint for the weekend and eat some Friday and Saturday nights. It’s my favorite non-dairy ice cream and I appreciate that they use agave, or coconut sugar in their flavors, which are all good. It’s a local product though, so not easy to find outside of Texas. Believe me, I try …
- I’ve been making this paleo bread every week lately – it’s good toasted in a pan with some apricot preserves on it.
If you had asked me ten years ago, or even five years ago, if I thought I’d be able to lose weight and keep it off, I would have laughed in your face. I have spent YEARS – most of my life – loosing and gaining THE SAME weight, and then gaining even more, so I didn’t have high hopes for changing that as I entered my 40’s, but here I am, and I’ve hovered at around 140-150 pounds for 4 years. I could lose more, but my body seem to be happiest at about 140 and it becomes nearly impossible to go lower.
What has worked for me is two things, but also taking a lot of “choice” or chance out of it – I do the same exercise and eat the same things every week:
- finding an exercise routine I can stick with daily, that I enjoy, and truly shows results. Pure Barre has been that for me, more than anything else I’ve ever tried. Our focus in class tends to be on thighs, seat and outer thighs, which are my biggest “problem” areas. Doing Pure Barre for nearly five years has changed my body in ways I never thought possible. It’s also my community, and a “constant” from one city to the next, and part of my daily routine.
- changing the way I eat. This has been the weirdest thing. For some reason, I’ve just been able to shift my thinking about food a lot over the last several years. I will eat a “treat” every once in awhile, but it has to be worth it, worth the calories and worth how I’ll feel after. And honestly, now, nothing, not even sour jelly belly jelly beans (my biggest weakness), is worth the calories or the way they make me feel, so I just don’t eat them anymore. Or WANT them. Another thing that helps? Not shopping at Trader Joe’s. There are too many snack-y things there I love and would eat if they were in the house, but that make me feel bad, so I just stopped going.
So there you have it: what has worked for me. I’m still rather shocked when I look in the mirror at my relatively new body; I honestly never thought I’d live in a body I felt so good in. Yes, I like the way I look, but more than that I just feel SO GOOD; strong, healthy, sore a lot of the time from Pure Barre, but overall, just GOOD. I wish that for everyone, and I am so grateful I’ve been able to find what works for me, so far.
What has worked for you? Have you found an exercise/nutrition routine that makes you feel good?