Be Inspired. Be Motivated.

Inspiration: the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative

Motivation: the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way — thanks Oxford dictionaries.

 

Every individual on earth has their own reasons for doing the things they do, saying the things they say and thinking the way they think. Fact. There’s a reason for everything. When it comes to fitness, many people are motivated or inspired to start on a journey by different things. It isn’t always an athlete, but sometimes an event, or a health situation, or a mid-life crisis. We’ve all been there.

So, what’s my motivation for my healthy living/fitness journey?

I’m not going to lie I want my body to look good. After getting slender from running so many miles and loving it, I wanted to have more definition within my muscles. Why? Because to me, in my eyes, strong is the new sexy. I started looking to see which athletes, or individuals had a physique that I would want mines to look like, and I came across some pretty impressive ones – at least from my standpoint. But what really hooked me on to some of the people that I admire and that motivate me, was not just how awesome their abs looked, but their outlook on life. The way they handled their situations, their setback, their temptations. People whom, yes have a great healthy lifestyle, but also want their followers and their fans to have one as well.

Who motivates me?

Massy aka Mankofit. Her body? Amazing. Her spirit? Amazing. I discovered her through Instagram, and she lives for motivating people. Inspiring them with her amazing physique, but motivating them through (not quotes, which is cliché and everyone does) but through speaking to her followers and telling them how it’s helped her overcome her emotional past. Though I haven’t found out what exact turmoil she went through, I can relate to her because I too have had a rough time emotionally (beating myself up mentally for not excelling to the heights that I should, or for comparing my successes with another). She lets us in and frankly we relate, I relate.  Also, she’s Dominican, and so am I. I basically fell in love with her. She motivates and inspires me to be a better person, have a healthier lifestyle, be a physically fit goddess and have fun while doing it all! 

I mean, cause, why not?

Alysha Clayton is my next girl. Oh, she is absolutely amazing. I also discovered her through Instagram. Why did I start following her? What about her motivates my fitness journey? Her body. It’s amazing. I want my strong to look like that, and watching her exercises, healthy recipes and falling down and getting back up, adds along to her whole package as an individual who motivates and inspires me to be a better me. Plus, her booty makes people that get butt injections look foolish. Don’t be afraid to squat.

Still, just because I’m a girl, doesn’t mean I only get inspired and motivated by girls; Seahawks quarterback, Russell Wilson inspires me too. This guy was a third draft round pick, and took his team to the superbowl in two years. Talk about awesome. Yes, ofcourse he had great coaching, and an amazing team, but he defied the odds. And where people doubted him because of his height (5’11, pretty short for a quarterback) he worked harder to prove his skills were all that mattered. So if he can do it, and beat the odds, why can’t I? That’s how I was inspired.

I’m inspired and motivated by a lot of things. Athletes, non- athletes, personal life events, you name and I’m motivated (and inspired). Those are just some of the people that I follow daily to help me continue to see my potential and my growth. I know that one day, soon, I will have my competition body and my health is already being worked on from the inside out. Everyday I’m feeling more mentally, physically and emotionally healthy, not only because of these people but because I took the initiative to take that first step – three years ago.

Plus, her booty makes people that get butt injections look foolish. Don’t be afraid to squat.

Aside from all of those amazing body individuals, who are super healthy and have had a hard time in their lives where fitness saved them, literally, I see people who take their first baby steps, or leaps, into a fitness journey as inspiration and motivation.  Doing something your afraid to do, and never thinking you could is amazing and though it may seem like nothing compared to someone elses success, it definitely is inspiring and motivating to others, and better yet to yourself. Be inspired and be motivated because this is a lifelong journey to a healthier life, and one that is sooo worth it.

– Alba

Aunt Flow Interrupts Workout Time, We Make it Work …

Caution: This post is strictly for the ladies. So, unless you really want to know about our Aunt Flow and how she likes to visit once a month, I would NOT continue reading. You’ve been warned.

Now that’s out of the way, it’s that time of the month again! The time when Aunt Flow likes to remind us of how vibrant, fertile and very much full of life we all are! You know, we get the joys (because we got it this month), we get the pains – mostly the pains – and just the knowledge that for the next week or so, we’ll be tending to good ol’ Aunt Flow. And by tending I mean wearing secure protection, taking the necessary meds for pain, getting very emotional and trying not eat all the sweets in sight. Normally, women who are starting out on their path to fitness may tend to skip the first day (or few) of a workout which is understandable, but once we get the strength to hit up the gym or start working out again – depending on the protection – there are a few clothing articles that we should avoid altogether. There are also different clothes that will work regardless of the type of protection we use.

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Image Provided via Tumblr @theladyoflooseends

Since, I’ve been living an active physically fit lifestyle for the past three years or so, I’ve found what works for me through trial, error and embarrassment – oh you don’t know the half of it!

**One time I wore a pad for protection with some cotton grey tights. I had a high intensity workout and you know, I was doing my thing. I said to myself, “Once I start working out, I won’t even think about my monthly.” And it was true, I didn’t. However, after I was done, my tights were soaked, shirt drenched, and worst of all so was my underwear — except for my protection! Can you imagine? The whole outline of my protection was completely dry and visible, needless to say I was super embarrassed. Super duper embarrassed (but at least I had a good work out, right?).**

With that being said, I have come up with a go to list for what to wear around that time of the month.  As women, we must overcome these treacherous obstacles – like good ol’ Aunt Flow – and prove to ourselves that we’re in this for the long haul and nothing will stop us. It’s not a fad or something temporary, it’s a way of life; and lets be honest with ourselves, Aunt Flow will be with us for awhile.

Tip # 1 – For high intensity workouts (such as: running, elliptical, cycling etc…) use a tampon, low intensity use a pad. The type of clothing will not matter as much, as long as your “protected” and “non-showing.” If you prefer using a pad at all times, then read tip # 2.

Tip # 2 – If using a pad, regardless of the workout, wear clothing that will keep you dry, like compression shorts under regular nylon/cotton shorts, or compressions leggings (they resemble the kind that football players wear, or runners that run in the cold).  I stick to Under Armour’s Compression Leggings, they’re just a good fit. Also, most fabrics that state to be “moisture wicking” are a plus because it keeps the moisture off (almost like sucking out all of the sweat from the body). Livestrong  explains how this type of fabric works. Some brands that particularly specialize in this include: Capilene, COOLMAX, and Dri-FIT.

Tip # 3- Try to avoid cotton on skin at all costs. I had to learn the hard way. Even if it’s not that time of the month, just avoid it. Cotton will absorb the sweat and not release it as quickly through evaporation. It. Will. Take. Its. Time.

All in all, to combat Aunt Flow, we need to keep dry and comfortable, not sticky and wet; so lets make it work and show Aunt Flow who’s boss. Period.

– Alba 

 

You Got It? Flaunt It!…but do it RIGHT!

When it comes to workout clothes, I pretty much only go to one place that has variety and affordable prices and that’s Marshalls. Marshalls is heaven sent for me because I generally am a big bargain shopper. The most important thing when it comes to work out clothes is the fit. There is nothing worse than a camel toe, breast spilling out of your sports bra, or constantly picking up your pants or shorts because they are too big.

Ladies: I’m probably a little too blessed and have a natural bra size of a 32GShopping at Marshalls aka back ache. With that being said, I am forced to either wear two sports bras to keep the girls secured or splurge on a good sports bra. Moving Comfort is the brand that works for me, though a bit pricey, it’s well worth the investment. I am able to wear this bra without having to double up with another bra and it holds me really well. Nothing is better than having a sports bra that is comfortable, adjustable, and of course, cute. I feel like I could run around doing handstands and cart wheels – but I can’t, so I won’t.

Pants, I’m also pretty blessed in the rear but being smaller in the waist creates a problem for me. That’s why I take my plump rear to Marshalls where I can get brands such as Jockey, Under Armor, Yoga Girl, and Avia. Even though I have a bit (okay a lot) of junk in the trunk, I still get a size Medium because of my waist being smaller and also because your pants stretch throughout your workout. If your pants get loose throughout your workout, you could be focusing more on pulling up your pants rather than your form. Getting a good length is also very important. I love that in general, clothes designers have finally realized that not everyone is going to be able to wear the same length or style. Everyone is different and there are different body shapes. I’m standing at a proud fun sized height of 5’3 ( I think I’m really 5’2 but I had them write 5’3 on my license, so 5’3 it is) and because of my fun sized height, I usually op for pants that are ankle length or that hit just below my knee. Those lengths keep me from looking stocky and also not stepping on the back of my pant legs.

Shorts are not really my favorite option but hey if you have legs for days, then flaunt them. I am working on my legs, definitely my biggest challenge but once I get them toned and muscular then I will probably rock them all the time! I personally believe that it is essential to wear compression shorts when you’re wearing shorts, especially when running. Nike has the coolest and funky colors that I love.

Men: You guys can pretty much wear anything to the gym. You don’t really care what matches or how it looks so I think that just proves more so why your lives are easier than the ladies.

Overall: When you look good, you feel good, but it’s a process. You might not see 5lbs dropped or definition in your muscles yet but knowing that you’re doing at least something every day – even if it’s choosing an apple over a chocolate bar – that’s progress. Embrace your body, love it and yourself.

Xoxo

Jasmine