Wednesday, November 9, 2011

For Real



You know those fitness magazine articles where those women with their perfectly sculpted bodies - wearing the most chic workout attire - try to illustrate exercises in pictures that really just piss you off?  This post is basically my answer to those articles.  This is the anti-sculpted, anti-chic, REAL woman workout post.  This is just me, on a very typical weekend day, going to the park to get some exercise and enjoy the beautiful weather.  No cute outfit, no makeup, clearly without having done anything to my hair other than getting it out of my face.  Ironically enough, this post came at a time when there has been a lot of Twitter buzz around what bloggers 'really' look like, how unglamorous our lives probably really are, etc. I had decided that I want to start documenting some things in my life that are behind the scenes of my blog that definitely contribute to it. Since mentioning weight loss in my About Me page, I've been asked lots of questions over e-mail and Twitter about how I lost weight. If you've come here looking for a weight loss secret, you will certainly be disappointed. Come to find out, there is no substitute for eating well and working out. (I know, bummer).  If it's any comfort, I struggle with this every. single. day.

Please understand: I don't like working out. Yes, I feel great afterward and of course I have more energy when I work out regularly, but I am a holy terror when it comes to exactly 2 things: 1) waking up in the morning and 2) working out. (FINE, I'm a terror when it comes to more than just those 2 things. But for the purpose of this blog post, only those 2 are relevant. Unless I think of more.)  I have tried virtually every group fitness and cult fave fitness bandwagon there is, and nothing ever really stuck. I finally found a recipe of things that work for me when it comes to maintaining the weight where I'm most comfortable being (+ or - 5 lbs.  happens to be in the +5 range right about now. ish. swimsuit season is over, give me a break.) Seriously... the main thing is that I have a great partner in this who is as invested as I am in being more healthy. He inspires me to make better choices. We have off days, and we get it back on track... together. We hold each other accountable and call each other out on our crap when we're trying to have cupcakes for breakfast. I think you have to put yourself into a situation that plays to your natural strengths.  For example, I have no willpower at all. Like - zero. It's scary.  But I am a really supportive, protective friend when it comes to certain things.  I may not always make the best decision when it comes to myself, but when I feel that someone I care about is depending on me to make better decisions - it's a game changer.

The other factor in this that is so, SO crucial for me is a personal trainer.  (If you're in Nashville, do yourself a favor and give this guy a call.  I cannot say enough great things about him.) It really isn't what I thought it would be... he doesn't bark orders at us or push us to do more than we are comfortable with.  He's just an awesome guy, who tells you what workouts to do/watches to make sure you're doing them correctly.  He tells you which foods to eat and which to avoid.  He asks what you ate recently - which actually does factor in to my decision when I'm faced with the fried food line vs the salad bar in the cafeteria at work.  He asks about your day, your family, your job, your life... and before you know it, you've been working out for an hour.  I actually find that if we cut back our workouts to less than twice a week, I'm anxious that we will have more than an hour worth of 'stuff' to update our trainer on when we see him.  I understand that having a personal trainer isn't going to work for everyone.  It is expensive - we had to decide that it was an investment we were making that is more important than paying more rent or having a nicer vehicle.  (Funny how having a nicer YOU is the last thing most people factor into their financial planning).  Also, not everyone will get as lucky as we did and find someone as a trainer who is a great match for us.

I took the opportunity to do some of the exercises that our trainer makes us do in the gym while enjoying the day at the park.  So this is me, really doing these exercises.  I have tons of room to try to keep improving, I'm just sharing what is working for me.  Hope this helps.        



Yes, I HAD to do the whole Rocky thing after running those stairs...









Park bench push ups.  PS: push ups are my least favorite thing. They hurt.






Aaaah plank pose.  It seems easy enough until you're about 20 seconds into it.  Once your whole body starts shaking, you only have about 10 more seconds to hold it ;)

43 comments:

  1. LOVE this post Sarah and enjoyed reading it so much! The photos are great and the post is so sincere and real :)

    xxx,

    Fashion Fractions

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  2. Such a good point re: "Funny how having a nicer YOU is the last thing most people factor into their financial planning". So true - I've never really thought about it that way!

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  3. Love you for posting this and being real! These are GREAT pictures - you look way more glamorous than I do when I'm working out :)

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  4. What a wonderful post! I truly love your style but what I love most about your blog is your honesty. Every picture that you post, everything that you write just screams sincerity. I read every single day, even on those days when I just whiz by other blogs that I follow.

    http://theleatherskirt.blogspot.com/

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  5. I loved this post! I love how real you are. I really have to push myself to work out. I know I have to do it, and I know I should do it, but I just really don't want to some days. And plank pose ... sheer torture. My physical therapist has me doing those and side planks and my whole body just shakes and I almost collapse. But I guess he knows what he's talking about ...

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  6. I loved this post as well, it's well thought and honest and I can relate to a lot of the things you're saying. I've finally managed to establish a routine for working out regularly, and for me it's jogging, I've really come to like it.

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  7. I love this post. Very encouraging. I just did a weightloss post on my blog but I didn't really talk about exercise as much as diet...mainly because I hate exercise...and love it all at the same time. But I prefer exercising outside in the fresh air, and your pictures are quite inspiring. :)

    xx Jessica

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  8. Such a refreshing read :)

    www.southmoltonststyle.com

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  9. I just got back from a run and came across this post, which inspired me to attempt some of these move! Thanks for the inspiration :)

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  10. Really loved this post! I should definitely start working out again!
    It's nice to see an outfit, different from what bloggers usually wear in their posts.

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  11. Love this post!! Thanks...and love the fitness outfit...kisses from Brazil ~.~

    http://www.diariodocoquefrouxo.blogspot.com/

    @MissJota

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  12. great post :)

    http://forallthatjas.blogspot.com/

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  13. Great post! Keep up the good work. Oh and I love the behind the scenes stuff.

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  14. I really loved this post. We are exactly the same. I HATE mornings, and HATE working out. I just met with my trainer for the first time in weeks (between being sick and vacation, it had been a while.) We did push-ups and I wanted to kill myself. But in the end, it's all worth it... I look and feel so much better!

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  15. You're adorable! Love this! I've never been an 'active' girl. Wasn't in sports, didn't run, exercise. Dreaded the mile runs we had to do through junior high and high school. It wasn't until after I had my son that I decided to take some steps to get into shape. Like I tell people, yes I'm petite but I want to be toned too! That's why I work out. THE hardest thing for me is cutting out the sweets (I'm typing this as I devour a pancake.) I really do need to cut out sugar. :(

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  16. I would never allow a photo of me planking! You are bold. I feel like I'm fortunate to have found exercise that I really do like and can lose myself in, but then, it probably doesn't burn as many calories or toughen me up as much as running stairs would.

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  17. I love this post- you are adorable!

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  18. you look beautiful in that first pic. really really pretty. i HATE working out and the last time i worked out was probably about 6mo ago...which is why i look like a 90 year old woman from behind and may be the reason i have not worn a bikini in 2 years. i may never wear a bikini again...lol. i will be like kris jenner and wear fancy moo moo flowy dresses to the beach instead. =) you look like you really know what you are doing in your pics. and you look very in shape. i love this post. thanks for sharing!

    p.s. the reason you don't see bags under my eyes in my post today is because i erased them so that i am almost unrecognizable. LOL

    xoxo, jenn
    the stylish housewife

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  19. Ahh yeah that plank gets me every time! I have to say I love how raw this post was. Just because some of us may look glam on camera doe snot mean our lives follow suit.
    I have always debated weather or not to get a personal trainer but like you said it is expensive and I always thought they yelled and make you work so hard that I was intimidated. This gives me a slight push to look into it. I also am not a lets go work out it's fun kind of person so thank you for this post. I am trying pole dancing class tonight and can't wait to see what it's really like.
    Cheers,
    Bre

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  20. You look great lady!!! Keep up the hard work and you are not only with struggling with it everyday. But I've learned that it's okay to have off days and to take it easy because it makes me even more appreciative and motivated of how good I feel when I am making the right choices!

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  21. What a fabulous post! Working out is definitely a major part of my life too! I'm trying to stay motiviated with this time change though! It's so hard to hit the gym after work when it's dark out! xo www.casualglamorous.com

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  22. Love this post, I love seeing the 'real' side of bloggers. Though you still manage to look super put together, even when working out! I'd love to read more posts like this, thanks!


    xx
    thistimeisacharm.blogspot.com
    triangle necklace giveaway

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  23. Love this post! The plank is my least favorite thing on the planet. You look great in your workout gear.

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  24. You're adorable! And I know exactly what you mean about those magazine pictures. No one I have ever met in real life (including the very sculpted, very beautiful woman who teaches my kickboxing class) works out in nothing but a sports bra. It just irritates me.

    It looks like your workouts in the park are a lot of fun! (Push ups aside... push ups are my LEAST favorite part of working out, too.)

    GlamCake

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  25. I couldn't agree more...working out is the DEVIL and don't even get me started on working out in the morning! Suck fest. But it's all about how you feel after right?! My justification for the day! x

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  26. I love this post!! You are awesome - it's sooo hard to get myself to work out. Having a partner is so helpful. :)

    And I love your aviators! Adorable.

    Best
    CK

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  27. I had a personal trainer before too, and all this is true. We talk and talk and the hour is gone! And the plank pose aarrgh. But you really feel like you have worked out, and feel really great afterwards, he helps you to be motivated, and stay motivated. And the fact that someone is actually waiting for you to come in and work out - it makes you go - no way to avoid!

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  28. Sarah, you are the best. I'm so happy you're a blogger. :)

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  29. What a great post. When I first saw the aviators I thought we were going to be taking a "ride into the danger zone" but then I'm hearing the "Rocky" theme while your running up the stairs (nice stairs) and I'm getting idea for some great workout music.
    You look great in that under armor. I have to disagree with you. It IS a cute outfit and you DO look glamorous.

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  30. These photos are so beautiful, I like them! And you look so pretty!!!

    Please, follow me on Cosa mi metto???
    If you already don’t!

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  31. It’s incredible that you’re still stylish even when breaking a sweat. Keep up the hard work!


    http://whichmewillibetoday.wordpress.com

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  32. ATÉ NOS ESPORTES VOCê É CHIQUE

    AMEI

    bjokas

    http://coisasdethalitha.blogspot.com

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  33. Not enough words for how much I love this post. A little while ago I came to this realization: of course actresses look amazing, even those with 3 kids. THEIR JOBS RELY ON THEM LOOKING HOT. If my ability to earn a living was based on my body fat percentage, I'd look like them.

    It really is about eating well, exercising, and sharing the truth, which is that normal women don't look like the girls in magazines. And for the record, you look great in your workout clothes!

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  34. You go Sarah! These pictures are great...and I am also a terror with the wake up thing.

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  35. What a great post. And you still look fabulous in those work out clothes.

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  36. Awesome plank, girl! You have good form! :)

    -B
    With Love From Michigan

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  37. This is my new favorite post of all time. You could not have said it any better. PLUS I think that we really ARE twinsies! I am a TERROR with waking up and working out too! I have completed two weeks of 3x/week training sessions with my new trainer. I have zero self discipline and having a trainer is the only thing that works for me.

    You are a hottie in those work out clothes ;)

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  38. New follower. I like how honest you are in your post. I hate those fitness magazine because they make working out and eating healthy so easy when its really not. When I was younger I use to workout 2 hours a day and looked like those ladies in the magazine. Fast forward 10 years later I'm still struggling with those 5-10 pounds that I can't tend to lose for nothing.

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  39. Hi! I just found your blog via Katya's twitter where you said you had added her to your blog roll. Awesome. She is the greatest blog friend I have to date and I just love her! Anyway, I did not expect to find this when I popped over to your site--this is so fantastic and honest. I love it. First of all, it makes me feel like a lazy piece of crap. Two, it makes me want to talk to my hub about our battle with weight loss. We've both been saying we need to, and he has perfect will power where I have none. It's scary. So reading about your story may be the little push I need. More power to you girl! I am so inspired by this. By the way, you look absolutely beautiful. The first picture is gorgeous.

    Courtney
    I Can Be Many Things

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  40. I was doing the plank pose just today, and I couldn't believe how much my body was shaking. Eek.

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  41. Love how you're rocking all these fitness moves for us! I have no willpower and have the same issues with waking up early and working out. Awesome that you have such a supportive partner to keep you motivated!! Definitely keep sharing more behind-the-scenes fun.

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