I hope it’s perfectly fine with you if I talk about something other than Melania Trump, police brutality, Brexit, or Kanye West.  The news literally gets weirder and darker every single day.  With the exception of the Taylor/Kanye thing, which I fully plan to discuss my theories on that at some point this week.

However, let’s take a total right turn, and talk about something not awful and stormy, but something really really necessary for summer survival.  Hydration!

Okay, so I’ve always been pretty good about hydration, especially since I spent those summers at camp.  At camp, I was there before canteens really started coming out with any significant ounce-age (not a real word), so I started making a habit out of buying 101-oz Deer Park containers and just toting those with me to camp.  And then again when I started running seriously, water was crucial to avoid bonking on long runs and not damaging muscle terribly when I went for a run.

Now, I’m still super active, and lifting more, but my drive to stay hydrated isn’t just for the purposes of keeping me afloat (tee hee) in a long workout or during a long day of teaching classes, but it’s also to keep me from having contractions and to get into the habit of drinking constantly so that I can keep my breast milk supply up once the baby gets here.  Plus I think it helps with some of the headaches I was getting really badly in the first tri…which we can also chalk up to the first tri just being a miserable time in life.

First off, here’s the trick I was kind of given by a nurse 21 weeks or so in, when I was overdoing it, and ended up spending a day on the couch with my feet propped up.  On the phone, the nurse told me to try and get 30 oz. of water in before lunch, and then another 40 or so after lunch.  Sounds like a lot, but it’s plenty doable with a few tricks I’ve mastered over the past few weeks that totally help you get more clear stuff in.  Plus, with all that liquid in, getting diet soda in is harder.  My like main vice, even though I consider myself fairly healthy, and plenty active is artificial sweetener, but I figured at some point that that can’t be awesome for the baby, so I’ve backed off a lot.  Tricks to stay hydrated, especially in the summertime!

Get cute/large water bottles or canteens.  

I’m a big believer in keeping some sort of water bottle with you at all times, because there will never get to be a point in the day when you’re like CRAP, I’ve had nothing to drink all day long!  I tend to gravitate toward larger, double-walled ones that are pricier, but can keep things cold.  The thing about the price is that it’s something that you’re toting around daily, and you’re not reaching for plastic bottles consistently, which is really not great for you, or for the environment.  I have a S’well (24 oz.), another S’well (17 oz.), a Yeti (30 oz.), and  I’m in the market for a larger canteen since I’m drinking more lately.

Really quick.  The S’well is cute, and a fashion statement I kinda, think, but it’s hard to shove ice cubes in it.  I stick to plain water from one of those tappy things at the water fountain for this.  The Yeti is great because you can get ice in there and it can fit in most machines.  It’s not very pretty though, and I had to buy a separate lid with a straw in it so I wouldn’t have to sip out of it like a coffee mug.  I am totally open to suggestions for a slightly larger, double-walled canteen.  


Start early!

I do my best on water on days when I have to get up really early for class, and I have to drink to get through classes.  On Friday mornings, I get up around 5am to get to my 5:45am class, and typically can at least get a Yeti in during/after class.


I really love anything carbonated, but I can’t slam Diet Cokes all day.  Just no good.  So, when I’m really wanting  something super super cold and bubbly, I’ve done a few flavored seltzers, in the the form of Dasani Sparkling, but my absolute favorite thing is to stop by the Burger King and get plain seltzer out of their Coca-Cola remix machine.  It’s always super cold, and overcarbonated, so it really has the most delightful effect.


Monitor your pee.

This is a sorta-gross trick I picked up, that I start using heavily whenever I’m heavy into a training cycle for a marathon. This trick sort of also depends on what supplements you’re taking – a multivitamin or a prenatal can turn your pee BRIGHT yellow, but otherwise, you should be operating in light yellow territory. The darker it gets, the more your eyebrows should raise.

Those are the best I can do on a few tips to stay headache-free this summer.

  • What are your tricks to keep your water intake up?
  • Any suggestions on a slightly-larger canteen that I can start to use as I try and get in a few more ounces throughout the day?

Body Pump™ Cert Part 2

So….obviously, I haven’t been around for a few days which was probably really truly concern to all of you because ya girl can talk. But between starting my brand new job, which I will talk about in another post, getting myself married, and passing my certification in Body Pump it has been really hard to brush my teeth, let alone sit down in one spot, get to a computer and pour out out.

So let me pour.

So the last you heard of me, I was just finished up after my first day at the Les Mills Body Pump training process, but I didn’t get too deeply into it cause I wanted to keep you on the edge of your seat until today, so I hope that it worked.

Body Pump!

So like I told you the other night, I drove down to Wilmington on Friday night, and I wasn’t really sure what to expect.  I’ve been to a lot of different fitness trainings, but right off the bat, this one seemed different because it spanned over two days, and Les Mills had actually sent us music, a live class video, and choreography notes, as well as two of the songs that we were told to prepare for a presentation.

When I got to the student recreation center at UNCW, the training began promptly.  I was really surprised, rather than there being a room packed out, the group was intimate, and every single one of the folks there was incredibly in shape.  A lot of the trainings that I’d gone to had a whole smorgasbord of folks, from the ultra fit to the beginners, so it was interesting to be in a room full of folks who, for the most part, had either been taking classes for a long time, or had been teaching other formats for some time.

Body Pump Team
Suze is the little atomic bomb down in the front. But check out all of these folks, how awesome do they look?

So the training started promptly, and we started with some business, and moved right into our first class of the release, and of the weekend.  Our trainer, Susan was this teeny ball of energy, and she taught an awesome class with a sparkle in her eye, and immediately, the hooting and hollering started from the group.  We were already hurting, but we already were feeling so together, that we were whooping up a storm.  It was awesome.

Again, we went into business – Susan broke down some choreography and choreo notes for us, and we quickly ducked out for a lunch break.  After lunch, we started “studying” the tracks we were going to present to the class, and toward the end of that first day, we took the class a second time, each of us taking turns to teach our tracks, and supporting each other.  The skills that all of us came to the training with were really impressive – though all of us left that day with feedback given to us that we needed to work on, we all started from a really solid foundation.

After Susan let us go for the evening, I found some food at a burrito barn, and chilled with a beer and with ‘The Fault in Our Stars’.  My feet were killing from doing the equivalent of two 60-minute Body Pump classes, so I decided to head to the beach to walk on the sand so that I could get a little circulation into the nooks and crannies and my poor feet.  Fun fact: I hit Flaming Amy’s again after day two, because it was the only place I had the energy to really hunt out.  Plus it was reallllly cheap.

Flaming Amys
I did a vegetarian burrito and a $1.25 beer. Perfect way to end the day.
Beach Photo
The beach. I was really missing my husband-to-be at this part.

Day 2

Day 2, we immediately started by taking the class again – and again, each of us presented our tracks.  Where there were certainly areas to improve on that first day, it was clear that all of us had absorbed some of the feedback that Susan had given us the day before, and there was vast, vast improvement on the day before.

The Body Pump Challenge.

I’m going to keep a lot of these details to myself because the challenge was so incredible, so so incredible, that I will let you guys that want to go off and get your Body Pump cert see for yourself what it was about.  I will say this.  I actually got a little choked up once we finished the challenge, and I had such an incredible sense of accomplishment, one that rivaled the sense I got when I finished both marathons.

Finally, after some more business, we took our fourth and final class, which we all took turns teaching our last track.

And sooner than I would have liked, we were done.  Susan called us out one by one to let us know if we passed or not (I passed!) and we all gave each other hugs and promised that we would keep in touch.  The way the process goes is that I am currently doing a lot of team teaching, and within 60 days, I have to send Les Mills a vid of me teaching, and being competent.

The weekend was a beautiful, painful, sweaty, hardcore weekend of fitness magic, and I am so grateful to have done it.  Seriously, if anyone is thinking about doing this training, you HAVE to do it, and please please, send me questions if you have any about the training!

Pump Legs
I cannot believe these legs pumped out so much weight! Go me!

What did you do over the weekend?  

Wilmington, NC

I can’t tell you how incredibly just…happy I feel right now.

It kinda feels like all the pieces kinda are starting to fit together for the first time in a long time, and I feel happy, content, and incredibly grateful.

Let me backtrack, and this will explain, at least a little bit, what I’ve been up to for the past few days.

I told you guys a few days back that I’d gotten a new job, right?  Of course, the timing is pretty funny, what with our wedding being in a few weeks, but that’s life, right?  So on Thursday, I officially started my new job, and I totally hit the ground running helping out with a community wellness event.  I ended up spending the entire day teaching modified fitness classes to kids a variety of different ages, and of course, ended up sorer (is that a word?) than hell for the next few days.  When I came into work on Friday, I arrived to the sweetest sign, the sweetest basket full of goodies, and a day/schedule PACKED to the gills, but all with good stuff.  I know it might be early to call it, but I’m really thinking in my heart that this job is a really good fit.  I just want to do a great job and excel, and see where the health and wellness industry can take me.

photo 2

Body Pump Training Part One/My friends are the greatest

As if life weren’t crazy busy enough, I scheduled another wrinkle in time for this weekend, my Les Mills Body Pump training at UNCW.

First and foremost, my friends are incredible.  Realizing that the training was this weekend and that I had no place to stay, I group texted some friends, one of whom is a bridesmaid, asking frantically if we knew anyone in Wilmington.  Long story longer, bridesmaid did, and hooked me up a friend who opened his home up to me.  Added bonus?   There were no cats or poodles named Coco there to wake me up at regular intervals, and I had the best Friday night of sleep that I’ve almost ever had.

So I’m gonna totally recap the Body Pump training after all is said and done, but it’s a two-day training, and day one completely kicked my butt, but in the best way possible.  Today, we took the equivalent of like twoish 60 minute Body Pump classes, and we all presented a track that was assigned to us like two weeks ago.  I surprisingly don’t feel as bad as I thought I would – I think once your body shifts into that level of pain, it sort of resigns itself, and that’s what I’m feeling is happening here.  I’m also pretty sure I blacked out during my presentation because it was filmed, and I was like, who’s that tall chick clean and jerking?! Yeah, that was me so…

But my first day impressions are really cool.  The training is really really pushing me, the trainees are really already an active and well-prepped group, our trainer really knows what it is that she’s talking about , and I’m extremely impressed at the fact that rather than banging through exercises gratuitously, there is a ton of focus on form and technique, something I haven’t really experienced before in the many trainings I’ve attended.  And since I’m a total workout nerd, this has made me incredibly content as Saturday almost draws to a close.

This was pre-training, and pre-shoulder shredding workout!
This was pre-training, and pre-shoulder shredding workout!

So tonight, I’ll be reviewing more tracks, reading a book, missing my husband-to-be, and wondering what it is I’d do without these fantastic people in my life.

What are you up to for the rest of the weekend?

Body Pump!

So, for a few months now, Matthew and I, coworkers, have been waking up at the buttcrack of dawn to go do this Les Mills class called Body Pump.

Dramatty and me!

I liked it the first time, and with the first instructor I took it with.

And then I took it with Monica.

And I honestly hope Monica never reads this because I don’t want her to get skeeved out, but she is an incredible instructor.

For starters, she’s beautiful, and I’ve heard rumors that she has a few kids.  She wears her instructorhood well, and she’s muscular and still feminine, and it’s obvious that she maintains her activity level outside of the studio.  (There are some fitness instructors who NEVER work out – I definitely was one of them many many moons ago.)  So as I started to fall in love with Monica (and with the class), the fleeting thought crossed my mind a few times, that I should look into becoming a Body Pump instructor.

And then Gina at The Fitnessista posted about her experiences at her Body Pump instructor training.

And THEN, finally, the other day, I took a class where the instructor made a HUGE boo-boo.  She was really cute, and very energetic, but not the best instructor in the entire world (her cueing wasn’t great, and her form was pretty bad to be a teacher).  And in the middle of a weighted squat, which I am still very very sore from, she goes “Come on!  It’s bikini season!  You wanna fit into that bikini!”.  I will go into later why you never say that as a fitness instructor, but that very day, I started doing some research and poking around for information on how to become a Body Pump instructor.

So, here is the official announcement!  I’m demoing my skills as a teacher in general next week at the Rapid Fitness downtown, and then I officially start the process to become a Body Pump instructor!  Crossing my fingers and hoping that the training won’t come to Raleigh until AFTER we get married, but with my luck, I’ll be in training like a week before 🙂

Any of you guys taken Body Pump before?