Midsummer Shape Up Challenge Starts Today!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Wake up, friends! Today is a very exciting day!!!

The Midsummer Shape Up begins today and I'm very excited that so many of you are up for the challenge!

The "rules" are simple: get your body moving EVERY SINGLE DAY for 30 days. The best part is you can do ANYTHING you want - you just need to move. Yoga, running, walking, lifting, swimming, a bike ride with your kids! There are so many options! Take this opportunity to try something new and really push yourself.

I love this challenge because you have do it in conjunction with any fitness program you are on or any other challenges you are taking part in! I'm doing Skinny Meg's challenge with Val - Fab Chick Gets Fit concurrently. No problem!

Why a workout challenge? Because most Americans have sedentary lifestyles. Many of us sit at desks all day, then we come home and sit on the couch. Research has shown that inactivity leads to many of our most common and alarming health problems - high blood pressure, high cholesterol (more LDL, less HDL -the "good" kind), high body fat (obesity). 

I think of exercise as a gateway to other healthier choices. I am more likely to make smarter food choices after I just kicked my butt in the gym. I am happier when I consistently workout - thanks, endorphins! When I'm happier, I stress less. Less stress means I'm more productive, more enjoyable to be around, and more likely to stay on top of my commitments. It's a win, win! Does anyone else feel like this? I never, ever regret a workout but I sure regret the ones I don't do!

Don't read me wrong on this - I'm not saying "go hard" in the gym 7 days a week with no rest. Mix up your intensity, try a variety of activities, and incorporate more lifestyle related movement in your day - take the stairs, walk after dinner, clean your house, etc. 

I highly encourage you to take before/after photos and measurements! (Even if you aren't trying to lose weight) The scale only tells part of the story. Monitor your progress somehow and you may be amazed at the results. I will be posting mine on WIW!

I CANNOT wait to see you all checking in, inspiring your loved ones, and becoming healthier, happier people! Tag me in your posts and use our hashtag #midsummer30for30.

On another note, we had a great weekend back home in Cincinnati. I really wanted to make sure I made good food choices while I was home so I prepped some meals! (salsa chicken, ground turkey, veggies, and quinoa/brown rice) People kind of poked fun at me for bringing my own food home but oh well...not everyone "understands" this journey or how HARD it is! That's ok. 

We still had a few meals out but it was nice that I was able to indulge purposefully because I made smarter choices earlier in the day. It's all about balance and I did SO MUCH BETTER than weekends home in the past.

On Saturday morning we hit the gym with Nick's parents - I love the rowing machine! I forgot to print off a routine so I just did what I felt like while focusing on the back. 

I set a new goal for myself to be able to do an unassisted pullup. Right now I'm working on the pull up machine but I hope to graduate to a bar and resistance bands soon. Currently I need about 130 lbs to do multiple pull ups - only lifting about 70 lbs of my body weight. Dismal but it's a start!

We found some athletic training tables (I would say manipulation tables) at the gym so I was able to practice a little OMT on my husband - I'm so rusty! His lower back was bothering him a bit so I popped and stretched it using HVLA and soft tissue manipulation -- "A chance to pop is a chance to cure." It's a good feeling knowing I can help someone after only a year of school! Obviously I can't do much but I feel like I've already learned A LOT thanks to my school!

In the evening we headed downtown for the Jason Aldean concert featuring Miranda Lambert, Florida-Georgia Line, & Tyler Farr. Such a good time! You all know I LOVE country music! Now I'm pumped for our next country concert - Luke Bryan - at the end of August in Indy!

The concert was held at Great American Ballpark which was such an improvement to Riverbend where most concerts are held. Regardless, the people watching was prime - one of my favorite activities. Can we talk about the high waisted, butt cheek showing, jean panties girls are wearing these days? Call me old school but I just don't get that trend. I hate sounding judgemental. Stop, Heather.

Our seats were down on the field which was a very, very cool place to be - we're big Cincinnati Reds fans! How awesome is it to stand where our favorite baseball players stand?

Miranda may have been the best part! I just love her and her hair was adorable! I heard she's playing in Indy with my other favorite - Thomas Rhett - but sadly, I have an exam to study for that weekend.

I'm pretty sure my phone was dead by the time Jason Aldean came out but he was also amazing! I forgot how many good songs he and Miranda have.  It was a great night and probably our last planned time in Cincinnati for a while. 

On Sunday morning, we embraced our inner married couple and went to Findlay Market after mass. Findlay Market is an awesome Cincinnati landmark located in Over-the-Rhine & one of the most diverse locations in the city. On weekends they feature a farmer's market in addition to their regular shops and markets. 

We basically did our grocery shopping for the next two weeks - sweet potatoes, tomatoes, peaches, green beans, gold potatoes. YUMMY! We also bought some chicken sausage, bacon, and cottage ham! 

With our new goodies, I'll get my meal planning done for the week - green beans, potatoes, and ham in the crockpot will cover us for a few dinners and lunches this week (with some leftovers from last week). Later in the week we will do a mini shrimp boil with the sausage and potatoes (plus corn) and salad. Next week I'll make a gumbo or jambalya - somehow I'll make it healthier :). We just have to be creative!

Supporting local business and knowing where you food comes from - I love farmer's markets! Can't wait to check out the City Market here in Indy!

Finally, on Sunday evening we hung out with the in-laws for dinner and tried a new place we've never been to (don't remember the name either). I got the zucchini "pasta" dish with tomatoes, onions, peppers, pesto, and grilled chicken! The portion was HUGE so I brought it home to have for lunch today. I would love to make this at home (albeit with less olive oil - it was a little excessive). 

How was your weekend? 

Are you participating in the Midsummer Shape Up? Any suggestions?


  1. LOVE this. I'm totally participating. Tennis tonight! :)

  2. This looks like a wonderful weekend! And so jealous about the concert!

  3. it sounds like you had a great weekend. I went to Chicago this weekend for the Rock n Roll race weekend, and I had a great weekend. I unintentionally ran a half marathon this weekend- the story is on my blog: http://www.thelittlethingsblog.com !

  4. I am most definitely participating even though I'm getting off on a sour note. But I will make it happen the remaining 29 days. I have a plan and I will stick to it! Part of my new found motivation or reason to be determined is actually one of the things you mentioned about inactivity. I had my cholesterol checked at my last appointment with my doctor and it wasn't pretty. It's gotten worse since the last time it was checked and my numbers are definitely in need of some improvement. Definitely a wake up call! But thankfully I have this wonderful challenge to help get me started again!

    I'm so jealous you got to see Jason Aldean (and everyone else)! I wanted to see him at Nationals Stadium when he's there this month but I couldn't get off work for it. Huge bummer because he's on my list of people I must see in concert yet.

  5. Got my run on! Damn I did #midsummerfit30for30! Oh well, I'm new to the hashtags. XOX

  6. I am going to do this. I started a 100 mile walking challenge yesterday, so this will work out perfectly. I am excited.

  7. I am participating for I totally forgot to check in and take measurements. I'll start doing that today :)