It’s official – I weigh the same…

Ok that’s not an exciting headline UNLESS you spent 5 days on a island! haha
We just got back from a 5 (well 6 because we got “stuck” there) day vacation on an island beach – it was as wonderful as it sounds :)

While I was there I was prepared to gain weight – mostly because I was NOT prepared to eat “sensibly”, sorry just wasn’t in the mood.  And there is a domestic beer there… that is cheap… and we had an ice chest…

So I came back and after giving a few days for bloat to go away and glycogen to come back to the muscles after a few workouts I weighed in – and I was exactly the same as right before I left!

I thought this was a slight miracle, and I am still kinda wondering how that happened – there was a LOT of beer over the week, we ate at the pizza joint twice, and I had fried tacos. BUT then I started to realize a few things that went RIGHT, yes even on vacation, and yes without me even really trying!  THAT is the most awesome part – it’s so engrained that I didn’t even really have to try (or suffer for that matter).

So what went right while I was gone for 6 days?

  • my breakfast was spot on every single morning – either eggs or oats, this was our “base” for the day
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    oats and coffee :)

  • I can count 3 dinners that I had grilled meat and veggies just because it looked good on the menu – tuna steak once, ceviche several times
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    ceviche – fish and peppers and onions and lime

  • lunch was often a simple sandwich (even if I had 3 lunches that day because exploring and beaching takes a lot out of you and you need to stay fed)
  • every day had a lot of activity – we walked at least 3 miles one day, trekked up a mountain another, paddle boarded another, swam in the waves in between bouts of total lounge chairing
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    paddle boards!


    3 mile walk – and flex :)


    trek up and down the mountain :)


    total lounging


    flex time during another walk :)

  • and while we did buy snack foods for the condo, you can only eat what you have there so it was a saving grace some nights to run out of chips early ;)

This must have been enough to offset the indulgances, which when looking back weren’t constant, maybe one per day.  Which is a great record when you have not put a limit on yourself!

I’ve written about being on vacation or on holidays before (search the blog for New Orleans or Thanksgiving) and you know that I don’t believe you can just go hog wild without consequences – indulging is not the point of this post.  I realized that even though I had not intentionally been “good”, there are enough habits in place that the consequences aren’t as drastic as they could have been :)   It’s important to have habits in place – and when they are it’s not as painful.  I ordered a grilled tuna without even feeling like I was making a “responsible choice” – it just looked good and I enjoyed my dinner – I didn’t feel like I was being left out of something :)

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Project Glutes!

I vowed to start writing here more often (I like the daily posting/musing on the FB page but I know some of you don’t see that every day).
I thought I’d start with a how-I’ve-been and what’s my most recent epiphany type post but decided to just jump in simple like with some tips for glutes!

If you DO follow the FB page I posted this non-scale-victory, and how sitting in lounge chairs right after weight loss, the skin used to make sort of a puddle under my butt … (now let me be clear about something- extra/loose skin IS a victory because it means you worked your a** off to burn off what WAS filling it up! but it is exciting when you figure out how to disguise it  too ;)   that is a great job for muscle, another post about that later)

I digress – back to the lounge chair story – thanks to patience and weight lifting, lots of that puddle has disappeared! It’s now supported by no-puddle muscle ;)   And I’m not even flexing!! Yay!


When I posted this, someone asked me how I got rid of (lessened) my “puddle”  … answer:
time mostly (I’ve been lifting for 4 yrs and there is no way around patience) but specifically for glutes I love bridges, hip thrusts, and my very FAVORITE (and for me most effective) is the GLUTE EXTENSION
[video of how I do them with links to instructions so you are using glutes, not back - if video not showing go visit the FB page, it's under videos ]

These are what I call glute extensions, because I do all the work with glute and ham, not lower back. The bench is lowered so I can bend at hips not back and Very careful to keep my lower back neutral so it doesn’t take the load, esp with this weight. I should feel the burn in my butt and legs.  I’ll credit these and a few other exercises for the glutes finally starting to develop. Nia Shanks has great instructions:

I also like single leg exercises – leg press, split squat
here is the split squat:


I know squats and lunges are popular, but I haven’t squatted with heavy weight in a long time, usually just use squats as finishers, and my body just doesn’t agree with lunges.

*you’ll also enjoy reading Bret Contreras (Fitness Page) – he specializes in glute development*


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Fitographer blog test

Hey there!

I’ve recently updated the service that handles the blog subscriptions and I *hope* all the subscriber names got transferred correctly :)   I am posting this blog as a test…

While I’ve got ya – I have it set to email the latest blog post at 7am central (only on days there is actually a post).  Does that seem like a good time of day or will it get lost in your overnight mess of emails?  My reading time is in the am but I might be minority :)

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Short doses in between blog posts…

The introduction of nursing school, operating my studio, and (quite honestly) a frustrating string of injuries have resulted in blog posts few and far between… good news (I hope!) is that I am almost on break from school so will have much more brain left over for blog topics in the coming months! ;)

BUT in the mean time, you can get shorter doses on my facebook page – I am pretty good about posting there daily (and I love the interaction!).  Plus it gives me ideas for what to blog about that’s helpful to you!

Alas, if you just can’t live without my (much too) wordy blog posts, there are almost 200 to read here already, and I dare say they are still relevant to those looking to get in shape, starting a weight loss journey, the fitness enthusiast… or the working-on-becoming enthusiast ;)


And for pure entertainment value… it’s things like this that you are missing out on if you don’t head over to the FB page!


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Fitographer awesome giveaway!

Fit-ographer Giveaway!

Enter to win one of these super-cool fleece jackets :)

jacket1 jacket3333 jacket22

This is an awesome prize so you have to do some awesome work for the entry!  My husband had a unique inscription placed inside my wedding ring – you guess what it says (in the giveaway entry)!  I may or may not post hints on the FB page

Make sure you subscribe to this here blog (mandatory – winners have been disqualifed before because they did not complete this step).  Then you can earn optional entries AND you can come back once a day to make additional guesses.  Correct (or closest) guess wins, but if there is no clear winner, I’ll draw from all entries so earn as many as you can!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

**alternate prize given if jacket is  not your size**

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Fitness advice from a business magazine!

I’m telling you guys (you follow me on facebook RIGHT?) , you NEED to also follow Entrepreneur – they put out TONS of articles, yes about business, but trade out “money” for “fitness” or “your business” for “your health” and many of those articles have concrete advice for achievement in general!!

A few gems I saw today

Transforming your life in 6 minutes a day – you have 6 minutes right????

Negative thinking that is keeping your from your goals:
do any of these ring a bell? I’ve been guilty of all 5 but #1 gets me a lot…

Another great article at Entrepreneur… substitute money with fitness/health/weight loss and you’ve got some great steps to getting more of it:

some quotes:
“stop doing what you’ve been doing” cuz it ain’t workin

“Your self worth has nothing to do with your finances” *weight*

“you’ll become a lot like the people you spend the most time with. Their belief systems, their ways of being and their attitudes are contagious. You’re either surrounding yourself with those who hold you accountable, or let you off the hook”

“The energy and time you spend on creative excuses is better invested in thinking of actual solutions”

read it for yourself!

YOUR favorite sentence from the article???

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Just get your shoes on

Got this article in my email – loved it – simple, true, no messin’ around… it’s not “easy” for anyone!!  “Laces tight” ladies (and gents) !!!

sharing with permission from Susan Hyatt

Just get your shoes on.

Want to know a dirty little secret?

Even after hundreds of hours of training from some of the best minds in the personal development industry (Dr. Martha Beck, Brooke Castillo, I’m looking at you)…

Even after being immersed in the world of “motivational speaking” and “life coaching” for 8 years, personally coaching thousands of clients to get major results…

Even after dropping — and keeping off — thirty-five pounds and becoming a Crossfit athlete (which I never EVER thought would happen)…

It still requires a TON of effort, discipline and grit to peel myself out of bed, into my workout clothes, and out the door for a run.


I wish I could tell you: “It gets easy, eventually — trust me!” or “I bounce out of bed at 5am like a cloud of sugar-dusted positivity, ready to sprint down the street!”

But that’s not actually true.

The reality is: Challenging yourself never gets “easy.”

That’s why it’s called a “challenge.”

Running is hard and uncomfortable and even TO THIS DAY, my mind resists it.

My mind tries to convince me not to it.

And yet… I do it.


Because I put my effing shoes on.

I don’t think about it. I don’t make up a big story about it. I don’t allow myself to have an internal debate about it.

My alarm clock goes off. I groan. I slam it down. I check in with my inner life coach. She tells me: “You always feel so proud when you are done. Your best ideas come to you while running.” (She’s smart like that.) I get up. I put my shoes on.

Once I actually have my shoes on, I know:

This is happening.

Im going for a run.

That’s the advice I give to all of my clients and friends when they are struggling to do things that make them feel scared, vulnerable and uncomfortable.

Just get your shoes on, first.

That’s all.

You can decide not to go AFTER you have your shoes on, if you want.

But you’re not going to do that. Because once you have your shoes on, you will remember: Whatever hard, challenging thing you’re about to do? You are always so proud of yourself when it’s over.

This hard, challenging thing will give you tons of energy.

It will make your whole day flow better.

If you don’t do it? You know how the day is gonna feel…

So, shoes on, girlfriend.

Laces tight.

Doing this hard, challenging thing is THE choice that’s going to get your day started right.


PS. Obviously, running might not be your “thing.” But you can apply this same attitude — shoes on! — to anything you want to do. Writing, blogging, marketing your business, having a tough conversation with someone you love… shoes on, girlfriend. Turn off your chatterbox-brain and just get your shoes on, first. THEN decide if you are going to back out. You won’t.


Copyright © 2015 Susan Hyatt

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Got some great recipes for ya that we posted on the Fitographer FB page today…
buffalo dip, chili, stew, and spinach turkey!  Enjoy!!
**and don’t forget – there is a link straight to Recipes at the top of this blog so you can always find them in a hurry!**



good with chips OR broccoli ;)



1 lb meat (ground turkey here), 2 cans diced tomato w juice, 1 can drained beans, 2 tb chili powder, 1 tsp cumin, .5 tsp garlic, 1 tsp worcestershire, shake powdered onion, salt, pepper – simmers about 30 min





frozen spinach (prob 1/2 a bag), peppers, can of roasted tomatoes (with the juice), 1/2 lb leftover turkey, sour cream and spices (chili powder, garlic, pepper, salt)
let it cook down a bit
wish I could be more exact but i threw stuff in a pan and it was GOOOOOD



Recipe is equal parts cottage cheese, egg whites, oat bran (or oatmeal). for pancakes I use 1/2 cup each (that’s a big serving btw), for bars I use 2 cups each in a cake pan

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Almost the New Year! are you ready?!

Do you have a New Year’s resolution?  Some people hate those because “why wait for the New Year? what better time to start than today?”  I can get on board with that, but at the same time I don’t think there is anything wrong with a little prep time before a big task.  JUST make sure you are actually prepping! :)

*I* made my own start date – January 3rd.  That’s when all the hubbub would be done, the kids went back to school, and it was a Monday ;)  I planned for it to be HARD and I didn’t want any excuses… I won’t lie it was difficult – I had withdrawal headaches for several days and probably wouldn’t have done well with a full house of holiday cheer ;)

But you know what else?  I had been working on my plan for 2 months!  Preparing mentally, reading, figuring out how I would schedule my meals, buying containers for my food, revamping my grocery list for the new foods, starting to clear out pantry items, figuring out some recipes.   AND I started to hit the gym, not hard core, just eased into it to get familiar with some exercises, figure the best times for me to go, get used to the atmosphere… and frankly get used to the idea of exercising before I was ALSO dealing with the food issues and the withdrawal!

I think planning/prepping takes away at least a few excuses – you don’t just encounter an obstacle and give up because you’ve already thought of this and you have it covered ;)


PS – I hope I haven’t scared you away talking about the changes being difficult – but the things I talk about preparing for are so easily part of my day now (ie eating 6 times  a day, buying different items at the grocery store) but in the beginning it did take some planning and getting used to ;)   For ME it was important to acknowledge and prepare for the fact that it would be difficult, otherwise I would have run the other way when it smacked me in the face!!


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Fitographer’s Black Friday (sort of)

Don’t forget – one more day to get this necklace at 45% off with code “fitnix”

*also – if you have been missing any facebook posts – did you know you can get them summarized in your email, one time a day?  go here*


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