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Every Workout Wardrobe Needs: A Great Fleece Jacket

Disclaimer: PrAna sent me the Drea jacket that was inspiration for this post.

As fall is here and winter just around the corner many of us don't want to be chased inside for all of our workouts. I love working out outside and I've found a great fleece jacket is the perfect way to keep my workouts outdoors! Whether walking, hiking, or running a fleece is a great way to stay warm and toasty without the bulk of some other jackets. It's definitely a must-have for any fitness wardrobe.

These days there are fleece jackets in every size and shape. There's one to suit just about any workout you'd want to take outside.

Things to consider when searching for your perfect fleece jacket

Do you prefer a pullover or full-zip jacket? 

For your purposes would a collar or hoodie style work better? 
PrAna's Dee Dee Jacket

Do the pockets zip? For me this is a must for all fitness jackets. Nothing worse than losing something out of your pocket on a run.

Do you need a moisture wicking fleece? If I plan to use it for running this is a must. 

Is it quality? A good fleece will last you years. Definitely go for quality here.

Is it a color you love? Sure fitness fashion needs to be functional, but it can be cute too!

Do you prefer more fitted/less fitted? 

Can you see yourself loving it and wearing it again and again? Like I said a good fleece should last you years, so you want to love the one you choose.

My perfect fleece jacket

My perfect fleece jacket is the PrAna Drea. It fits all of my preferences to a T. I love the hoodie and fold-over cuffs (I am forever losing one glove on runs). The quality is exceptional and the style equally so. The fit is perfect (fitted without being clingy or tight), the pockets zip, and it's made from wicking performance fleece. I can wear it for walks, hikes, or runs (or let's face it, to the grocery store). It's warm and cozy and cute and... perfect.

Have you found your perfect fleece jacket?

Paleo Through The Holidays - October's #PaleoChat

The holiday season is almost upon us. (HOW did that happen?!) This time of year can be especially challenging to those trying to eat Paleo, Primal, or gluten-free.

Join me Wednesday, October 2nd at 9 PM Eastern (on twitter) for October's #PaleoChat. We'll be discussing being Paleo through the holidays.

One lucky chatter will win a copy of:

PERFECT for the holidays!
And YES this month's chat giveaway is open to our Canadian chatters as well!

Please note: this will be the last chat of 2013. There will be NO #paleochat for November and December. Chats will resume in January 2014.

Hope to see you there!

Happy National Coffee Day!

Disclaimer: Starbucks sent me a bag of their newest coffee. I was under no obligation to post or share and am not compensated for this post. To know me is to know I love coffee and I love Starbucks. Period.

Tomorrow is National Coffee Day. AKA my favorite holiday AKA a day that is most celebrated among my people.

My fitness philosophy.

I'm often asked if coffee is Paleo. My short answer: I don't care. My long answer: I am absolutely convinced that cavepeople of my lineage were roasting coffee beans over a campfire, smashing them with rocks, and pouring hot water over them. Obviously.

If we're friends on Instagramtwitterfacebook... OK, pretty much anywhere, you are well aware of my passion for coffee. Yes, yes I've been known to call it happy-rainbow-unicorn-sunshine-juice. You also may be vaguely aware of my love of all things Starbucks.

I call that little photo montage "Tuesday".

Let's just say I was mildly excited when Starbucks wanted to send me a bag of their newest coffee to celebrate with this National Coffee Day.

 A little info on this new coffee and Starbucks National Coffee Day promotions:

Starbucks honors the birthplace of coffee with the global introduction of Ethiopia, an enchanting single-origin steeped in history and flavor

Ethiopia, a new packaged, whole bean coffee from Starbucks, celebrates the country’s rich heritage as the birthplace of coffee. Extraordinary beans combined with Starbucks expertise in roasting give Ethiopia a uniquely delicious flavor, featuring soft, velvety notes of dark chocolate, peppery spice, and sweet citrus. This single-origin, medium roast is available in company-operated and participating licensed stores in the U.S. and Canada, as well as on beginning October 1, 2013. One-pound packages of Ethiopia coffee retail for $13.95 U.S.
Ethiopia Commemorative Tasting Cup
National Coffee Day, Sept. 29: Free Ethiopia Tastings and Commemorative Ceramic Cups
Starbucks will honor the rich, timeless tradition of coffee in Ethiopia with free Ethiopia coffee tastings in participating Starbucks® stores in the U.S. Sept. 29, National Coffee Day. On that day, customers who purchase a 1-lb. bag of Ethiopia coffee will receive a complimentary Ethiopian-inspired commemorative ceramic cup, while supplies last. In addition, Ethiopia will be brewed in stores for two weeks following National Coffee Day.

Might I recommend a little Paleo-friendly cinnamon vanilla coffee creamer with that?

How will you be celebrating National Coffee Day??

Dick's Sporting Goods and Rage Fitness Invite You To...

Hey Colorado friends! Just wanted to share some info on a fun event:

DICK’S Sporting Goods and Rage Fitness Invite
Denver-Area Residents to Train with Top Local CrossFit Instructors
WHO:  Top CrossFit instructors from throughout the Denver area, including CrossFit Stapleton, CrossFit Cielo, Qi Extreme and CrossFit Eminence.

WHAT:  An interactive demonstration and workout with local CrossFit coaches, showcasing the latest Functional Fitness training programs and products.

This free in-store activity is geared toward active individuals looking for a different type of workout, or people who simply want to start a new fitness program.

Local trainers will lead instruction and exercises, share their experiences and training tips and provide demonstrations of Rage Fitness products.

Rage Fitness is the exclusive provider of Functional Fitness equipment to DICK’S Sporting Goods and on the day of the event, the Broomfield store will offer shoppers a 20% discount on Rage Fitness products.

                   WHEN:  Saturday, September 28, 2013
                                10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

                   WHERE:  DICK’S Sporting Goods
               31 W. Flatiron Crossing Dr.
               Broomfield, CO

Sounds like fun!

Body After Baby 13 Weeks Postpartum UPDATE

Finished 30 Day PUSH
Focus. It's an easy thing to lose. I have to say that the online 30 Day PUSH challenge helped me immensely with this. Not only in my health/fitness, but even more so with other aspects of my life. Definitely recommend this challenge to all of my blogger friends.

A Jillian DietBet
In an effort to encourage focus I've joined a friend in the Jillian Michaels Dietbet. People have been asking what I think about Dietbet in general; I'll give a full review at the end.

Daily Eats
I've had several requests for an overview of what I eat, what a day of Paleo looks like for me, etc. You can always follow me on instagram, I try to share meals there, but here is yesterday:
Breakfast: Paleo Pumpkin Pancakes and Applegate turkey bacon.
Lunch part 1: deli chicken and a roma tomato.
Lunch part 2: smoothie.
Dinner: BBQ Beef and Smashed Cauliflower.
 New Scale
It seemed a new scale was in order for the Dietbet. Just wasn't convinced my old scale is entirely reliable. I of course picked the pink one at Target. Meet Taylor:
 Taylor sadly weighs me a pound heavier than my old scale. So, my initial Dietbet weigh in was 196.2. Moving on...

What's Beautiful
Loving the What's Beautiful site. I will get back in 5k shape!! My current game plan:

Body Revolution Round 2
Still trucking with Body Revolution. I missed two workouts this week. See what I mean about focus? It is so easy to let the craziness of daily life edge out the things I want. Self care as a mom is a constant process...

In case you missed it...
I reviewed my new workout capri obsession yesterday.

How's your week?

Fitness Fashion Review: MARIKA

Disclaimer: Marika sent me this outfit for review purposes.
Last time I was working on losing baby weight it took me a very long time to buy new workout clothes. I made do with what I could squeeze into, I borrowed my husbands t-shirts, I didn't think it mattered.

Then, even though I wasn't at my goal weight, I bought some cute workout clothesLet me tell you: IT MATTERS.

Not only do good workout clothes simply perform better, but they also change my entire attitude. I FEEL better in cute workout clothes. Sorry, not sorry.

Since that epiphany I will always have fitness clothes that fit. Whether I'm at my 'goal' or not. It's so worth it; I'm so worth it.

Recently Marika sent me the following to review:

I have to say I love them all, but I'm obsessed with the capris! I can't gush enough about them. The fabric is amazing, the fit is perfect, they have a key pocket in the waistband, and are they ever cuuuute... I. Love. These. Capris.

They also come in purple. I definitely need these next.
The tech tee is the perfect for my preferences. It's long enough, but not too long. The sleeves aren't cap sleeves (I hate when the sleeves are too short), they hit at the perfect length. It doesn't cling, but it's not too baggy either. It's lightweight so I don't overheat. Perfect. Plus, the color is awesome. I love the bit of contrast in the seams and the triangle on the back. 

The sports bra is super cute and comfy too. It's well constructed and adjusts at the band which is awesome for a pullover style. Although it is their high impact bra, if you're larger chested like me you may not want it for plyo or sprints, etc. (Though I know everyone is different, I tend to prefer really constricting bras for those activities.) 

I have to say I'm impressed with what I've tried from Marika so far and I've already been perusing their site drooling over more. 

I will definitely be rocking this entire outfit again and again in my Body After Baby quest. A little cute fitness fashion = tons of workout  motivation for me!  
Do you procrastinate buying good workout clothes when you're not at your happy weight?

You can like Marika on facebook here

** Contains affiliate links

Tracking Progress: Goal Outfit VS The Scale

A while back NUX USA featured me as Inspirational Woman of the Week during their Fit Mom's Month. (A huge thank you to NUX for choosing me, I was honored). 

Are you following NUX USA on instagram?
As part of that they sent me a beautiful NUX outfit.
Isn't it gorgeous?! The fabric is so soft. Did you know NUX is made in the USA? Love that.
Even though I was pregnant at the time and knew full well I wouldn't be my regular size immediately post-baby I chose to have them send it in my regular size.


To track my progress.

Yes, I weigh, I measure, I track my progress in many ways. But...

There's just nothing like having that GOAL OUTFIT.

A goal outfit calls to me. It entices me in a way the scale cannot. "You know you want to wear me," it says. "We'll have such a wonderful time doing yoga together," it coaxes. "You and I are going to look so amazing together," it tempts. Somehow it manages to keep my mindset in a more positive place than scale watching.

A goal outfit also makes the finish line so much more tangible than some number floating out in space. I can see where I'm going with a goal outfit. I can try it on and see how far I've come, how far I need to go. 

To me having a goal outfit is just all around a more positive way to track my progress than only focusing on the scale. We all know how the scale can mess with our heads!

How do you track your progress? Do you have a goal outfit?

I will rock that outfit. Just you wait. Oh yes, there will be pics...

PS like NUX on Facebook. They shared this preview of their fall collection:
One word: droolworthy!

Body After Baby 12 Weeks Postpartum UPDATE

Holy. Cow. 12 weeks postpartum?! How did that happen?

It's definitely taken me much longer than I expected to get my, ahem, stuff together. But I feel like I'm finally in the groove and even... making progress!!

My stats:
Weight: starting-196 current-195
Bust: starting-44 1/2 current-44
Waist: starting-37 current-37
Hips: starting-44 current-44
Clothing Size: starting-13/14 current-13/14

Hooray for progress. One pound down and 1/2 inch down, I'll take it!

I think my new-found forward momentum is mostly attributed to sleep. My little one is sleeping much better and usually only wakes once in the night. Sweet, beautiful sleep. It makes me feel like I can conquer the world! Well, at least this postpartum weight loss thing.

Round 2 of Body Revolution is going really well. It's just what I needed right now. The workouts are only 30 minutes, it's a structured/planned out program, and it's weights and cardio together. Perfect.

I've substituted runs for all of the cardio only workouts. I'm still only getting in two runs that way. With my goal to get back into 5k shape I may need to add more runs later, but we shall see. My schedule looks like this:

Feeling great. Feeling determined. I WILL get there!

Gaiam - As Seen on TV

Body Revolution for Beginners

Is Jillian Michael's Body Revolution for beginners? Would you recommend Body Revolution for a beginner? Can I modify Body Revolution to suit a more beginner fitness level? These are questions I've gotten a lot since blogging through Body Revolution last year.

Before I begin answering these questions I want to point out: I am not a doctor, trainer, or any type of health professional. What I am giving are my thoughts and opinions. Always check with your health care provider before beginning a new exercise program.

Gaiam - As Seen on TV 
When I did Body Revolution for the first round I was at a more advanced fitness level. Straight from the beginning I was doing most of the moves at the most advanced level Jillian shows. Adding weights, jumping, whatever.

However, now I am doing Body Revolution again at a much diminished fitness level post-baby and feel better equipped to answer the questions on how people at a more beginner fitness level will fare with this program.

Here are my thoughts...

  1. I do not think Body Revolution is for absolute exercise beginners (as in have never exercised) or those with limiting injuries. The program steadily gets harder and at the end there is tons of plyo and crazy body-twisting moves that I feel exclude these folks.
  2. That said I love how Body Revolution starts easier the first few weeks and gradually gets harder. For my diminished fitness level post-baby it is perfect! It begins with building strength, balance, and form and works up in intensity throughout the program.
  3. I believe modification and listening to your body is key. Do the moves at the beginner levels Jillian shows, use lighter or even no weights, go at your own pace. Weeks 1 and 2 are much more beginner friendly than the rest of the set. My best advice is to hang out there as long as you need to. Then, likewise, as you move up through the program hang out at any level for extra time if you're not ready to advance to the next.
Every workout program isn't for everybody. It's all about finding what we love and will do. I personally like Body Revolution and that's why I went back to it. I love that it's only 30 minutes a day. I love that it's weights and cardio. I love it's intensity. And right now, most of all, I love the fact that I can do it even though I'm not at my normal fitness level. 

Bottom line? I think Body Revolution is doable for most beginners. (Again, check with your health care provider as everyone's situation is different.)

Are you a beginner that has tried Body Revolution? Would love your thoughts!