Half way point…

Hello all,

Here we are at week 4 of 8. The half way point. Sticking to eating high protein and healthy has been hard for me. I love food! I live to eat. I’m always hungry. My appetite has intensified with working out. I’ve wanted to eat everything in sight for the last 4 weeks.

This week I’m trying to meal prep again. My diet will consist of chicken burrito bowls, chicken teriyaki bowls, boiled eggs and protein pancakes! I’m trying to narrow down my recipes before making them tomorrow. I’ll share them after I decide! I will also confess that I have let myself enjoy ice cream more than I should’ve this weekend.

I’m sticking to my pure barre work outs. I have to say it is kicking my ass! Tonight I took the empower class with my girl Jordyn, Jojo, teaching and holy cow!!! I am sore already. I am taking more classes this week than the previous two weeks. Tonight, tomorrow, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday! I’m going to let Friday be my rest day for the week. Saturday I am going to do a workout myself consisting of :

50 jumping jacks

20 push ups (these are still difficult for me with the pacemaker getting in the way)

25 squats

25 sumo squats

25 crunches

30 bicycle crunches

15 Russian twists

And a 40 second plank

It’s not the most intense but it’s effective! I’m starting to notice small differences with my body and my muscles. I’m accepting the fact that I’m building muscle, but I will probably always have chicken legs. I promised some progress photos. While I can see the changes, because I look at everyday and know my body, you may not be able to see it. That’s okay because we’re just now in week 4 of 8. I can’t wait to see what becoming a little stricter with my diet and adding more routine workouts will do! While I’ve always been thin and I’m still thin with working out but, I am building muscle. I am becoming healthier and I am feeling better. I’ve lost inches and gained muscle. My scale is reading 136 and my pants are tighter in the thighs but loose in the waist. It’s all incredibly rewarding and worth the effort!

Keep an eye out for my chosen recipes tomorrow and a new song of the week on the blog!

Recapping and moving on…

I slacked on posting about week 2 for my fitness challenge and I’m sorry guys! Week one I stuck to my diet, minus the delicious wedding cake 🍰, and did more than enough exercising. I was really proud of myself for sticking to my plan whilst traveling. Week 2 was not as great as week 1.

I came home from my trip and ended up sick. I spent an evening in the ER and it took me almost all week to recoup. I didn’t stick to my high protein low sugar diet. Unfortunately I had a bland food diet. By Thursday however I was back exercising. I did a lot of cardio last week and signed up for pure barre. I’ve decided that on top of the workouts I set for myself weekly, I needed a little more guidance and a little more oomph.

After only 2 classes of pure barre I’ve had to take 3 Epsom salt baths. I’m loving it! I might be sore but I know it’s worth it for me to finally feel comfortable with my body. This week, week 3, I am doing 3 pure barre classes and yoga. Last week was a high cardio week so I’ve decided this week should be stretching and working on core strength. That whole do yoga with your dog thing…not as fun as you might think. Since I’m paying for pure barre I did not want to pay for yoga as well. Instead I downloaded the Yoga Studio app and I am doing yoga at home. It has videos for beginners, intermediate and all kinds of classes for target areas. It’s worth the download if you don’t want to or can’t afford to pay for classes.

I’ll also be meal prepping tonight! My mornings are consisting of cottage cheese and fruit or Greek yogurt with fruit. My lunches will have turkey, cheese, and veggies. My dinners for the next few days will be turkey zucchini meatloaf bites, with sweet potato and broccoli. It’s all honestly not as bad as it may sound to some. I’ll post my turkey zucchini meat loaf recipe tonight if anyone is interested in trying it!

Week 4 will have updated progress photos. I am already starting to see a difference in my body. And I promise to keep posting each week. Last week I was too exhausted to even think!

Hustle for that muscle- Week 1

Today starts week one of the 8 week fitness challenge I have set for myself. In my previous blog, “Bikini body not ready”, I talked about body image issues and how people of every size, make and build have them. My body issues stem from being, in my opinion, too thin. I am doing this challenge and setting these goals for myself. Letting you in on my journey is a big step for me. It makes me feel vulnerable and I hate to be vulnerable.

Week one is always the hardest. You are starting new habits and creating a different schedule for yourself. Week one is going to be even harder for me because I won’t be in my normal routine. I am traveling this week to a wedding. I wanted to make sure that the workout I started out this challenge with was one I could do anywhere, so I don’t have any excuses. I also need to ease myself into getting back into shape.

My main goal is not to lose weight but rather gain muscle and tone. In order to gain muscle I need to change my diet. I soaked that in this past week and might have over indulged with Easter candy and girl scout cookies. I plan on meal prepping for the rest of this challenge but this week that isn’t going to happen. I know that I have to increase my protein intake to help with my muscle gain. Also I have to eat less of those sweet sweet thin mints. So I am going to challenge myself, while traveling, to eat the healthiest possible. I did start out today with a healthy breakfast. I also made a healthy dinner.

So here is my work out for week one:

10 Jumping Lunges

10 Burpees

10 Jump squats

20 Sit-ups

20 Mountain climbers

20 Calf raises

30 Russian twists

30 Jumping jacks

30 High Kness

and a 1 minute wall sit

Repeat x3 ( that one I will ease myself into)

Every fitness challenge needs before, during and after photos. I am going to post these photos but please excuse my messy hair, no make up and complete vulnerability.


Bikini body not ready

The summer season is upon us and I am yet again struggling to be comfortable half naked in front of others. I know, we all suffer from body image issues. Damn that media for all those unwanted thoughts of not being “perfect” enough. Shame on all of us who tear down others because we are not secure with our bodies. For those of you who know me and are thinking, “What is she talking about? She’s so skinny!” STOP CALLING ME SKINNY! It is almost as insulting as calling someone fat. My body image issues stem from years of being told I have chicken legs, being called skinny, and being told I need to eat a cheeseburger. Up until 3 years ago I ate all the damn cheeseburgers I wanted and it didn’t help.

Do you know what I want to be called? Healthy! I want to be complimented on how healthy I look. Not on how thin I am. I want muscle definition, I want to have stamina, and I want to know that I am in the best shape I can be in. How does one achieve this goal? First of all get off my ass and eat a healthy diet. But I don’t want to be one of those people who eats to live. I live to eat and would like to keep it that way. My sweet tooth is almost as out of control as my constant hankering for cheese. I know I need to better understand a healthy balance for my diet, as I write this I am eating a box of thin mints. What? I’m not perfect.

I want to feel good about myself physically. Over the next few weeks I am going to write about my health journey. I try to be healthy and lord knows I need to be. Having heart failure is a constant reminder of needing to be in the best health possible. Starting Monday I am going to do an 8 week fitness challenge. I’ve got to give myself the weekend to finish off my girl scout cookies and Easter candy. Don’t judge. I will do different work outs, have a healthier diet, and get myself into a healthier state. If you have any suggestions as to what worked for you please feel free to send me them. If you want someone to be healthier and feel more confident, but you need someone to lay it out for you then I am your gal. Time to feel better about getting half naked in front of my peers!

Healthy food, healthy lifestyle and healthier health?

Bonjour friends!

Most of you that read this know me, I doubt my blog audience has expanded to the eyes of strangers. If it has then for those of you who don’t know me, I’m Madelyn and I have a longggg list of medical issues. As I inch closer to my 30’s I’ve noticed changes, a list almost as long as my health issues, with my body. From wrinkles to a change in my energy levels and metabolism. Bouncing back from a hangover went from a few hours to a few days. No thanks. Being in my late twenties my wants and needs have changed and my state of mind is constantly changing as well.

I no longer see things the same way I did a few years ago. Hell a year ago. I focus more on the bigger picture and have started to let go of little stressers. I have found myself focusing more and more on my physical and mental health. The things that are fun and the things that aren’t. I want to wake up and feel good. Sometimes you have to make decisions between the fried chicken and the veggies. A night out and a night in. I’ve recently been making changes to my lifestyle in order to be healthier.

I have to take my fair share of medications in order to keep my heart and hormones healthy. So if I can do anything on my own to keep myself healthy and strong, I’m willing to do it. Before I felt I was invincible despite my issues. I felt if I had made it through all my heart surgeries I could make it through anything. I now realize that was a childish outlook.

I have been known to be judgy and make my mind up before giving things a chance. That is something I’ve been working on a lot lately. One of those things I judged was my peers trying plexus. I thought this is one of those pyramid schemes and how can it really help? Just eat healthy and you’ll feel better. After months and months of seeing stories on Facebook I started to think “maybe this is legit.” A friend of mine Lauren is who sold me on it. I have been struggling with hormones and all that comes with it. Break outs, mood swings, and weight gain. Her testimony made me think I should give it a shot. I have to say after a few months of giving it a try…wow! I have a healthy gut finally. I rarely bloat, my weight is staying steady and healthy. I feel better. I’ve also been eating healthier, walking, practicing a healthier routine for my skin care, and trying to be active. I also realize how important it is to actually rest. I’m trying to not be go go go! To live more simply. I’m half way through my 30 day minimalism challenge. It’s been hard than I expected but that’s neither here or there.

Taking a probiotic and a multivitamin has helped me tremendously. I want to get to the point where I can feel comfortable going barefaced. This is one of the steps to that point. Fixing my gut, balancing my hormones, and making sure I’m getting the right vitamins. My Obgyn said I need a calcium supplement but I don’t want to buy something that’s not beneficial. Suggestions are welcome friends. Aside from taking care of myself internally I have developed a good skin care regimen.

I try to be conscious about what products I am using. I’m going for a more natural and environmentally safe products. I use aluminum free deodorant and it works better than any deodorant I’ve used before. Cold pressed aloe is a must have for my whole body! No dyes, sulfates and parabens are being used anymore. I’m cutting out brands that test on animals. I made sure my face wash is ph balanced. Sunscreen and moisturizer is my best friend. I want to live long and not look like leather. I want to feel good physically and mentally. I want to make a small difference by using American made, natural, and cruelty free products. Most of these products are more affordable too.

Getting my diet balanced has been a challenge. I cut out red meat after I had my pacemaker put in. It made a noticeable difference in how I felt, my digestion and my heart. I’ve been eating less meat and more veggies and fruits. March 1st I’m setting myself a new goal. I’m saying goodbye to pork. I have a sweet tooth and I can’t seem to break it. I love chocolate, fro yo, and candy! I’m trying to force myself to not eat it as much. It’s much harder than it sounds. Fingers crossed I can find a healthy balance.

I’m going to get healthier physically and mentally with my remaining years of my twenties. I’m going to go into my thirties feeling great. Below are a few pictures of the products I use, in case you want to give them a try!