Today was a great day...but it was definitely all thanks to the Lord! I woke up early this morning to get my workout in before heading to my internship. Many people ask me how I wake up so early to get my run in. It actually has surprised me that I am able to get up early and run as early as I do! A few things motivate me to do this, and I'll share them with you now! 1.) I make sure to sleep early. Sleeping is key!!! Since I have an early shift at the hospital (7am-3:30pm), with an hour-long commute, I make sure to be in bed by 8:30/9pm. I know this sounds EXTRA early, but considering how early I wake up, it's perfect for me.
2.) Running and working out is a priority for me. It is something I look forward to when I crawl into bed at night and am excited for when my alarm goes off in the early morning. I make sure that my sleeping, meals, and schedules are all conductive to making sure that I can wake up feeling rested and ready to enjoy my workout!
3.) I make sure to eat before I workout. I am one of those people that just does not function too well on fasting cardio. I usually eat a hard boiled egg, a protein muffin/bar (like my cocoa brownie muffins I baked last night!), or a banana before my workout for some extra energy and strength.
With that being said, this morning I woke up from a very restful night's sleep, spent some time with Jesus, and ate my cocoa brownie muffin before hitting the gym!
I did a 4 mile run at the gym, then did a quick 10 minute back and bicep workout. I use a heart rate monitor to track my workouts and make sure I am working my heart in a healthy cardio zone. I left my monitor on during my strength training session as well and was pleasantly surprised at how high my heart rate stayed during my workout! I think strength training after cardio is key to keeping your heart rate up and burning some of those extra calories!
My breakfast at work today was an egg and 3 egg whites, strawberries, and some tea. This is usually a pretty filling breakfast for me, but by the time 11:30am rolled around, I was starving!!! The Mexican special in the cafeteria today was Chili Lime Chicken Tacos, so I decided to just get the chicken taco meat and top it on a salad! It tasted great and was extra spicy!
Since I had lunch so early, I started feeling hunger pangs around 2:30pm. I usually like to distract myself from these because I tend to be a HUGE afternoon snacker and have a "once I start, I can't stop!" mentality. However, I've learned that if I prepack and preplan a snack, I am less likely to give in to that familiar snack attack feeling. I had packed a quest bar just in case this type of thing happened and decided to listen to my body and have my bar at my desk.
I got home from work around 4:30pm and was still feeling hungry. I knew it was too early to have dinner, but all I wanted was something to snack on! I decided to, again, listen to my body and have a small snack now instead of inevitably overindulging later on in the evening. I've learned that the longer I keep myself hungry, the more easily my brain and appetite will gravitate towards less healthy foods. I decided to have my special nut mix. I love trail mix but I am not a fan of dried fruit, so I tend to stay away from the store-bought mixes. I usually make my own mix by dry roasted almonds, cashews, and dark chocolate sea salt almonds I buy from Trader Joe's to get a little chocolate fix in there as well! I shake this all up in a tupperware and measure out about 1/4 cup of my trail mix as a snack!
That's a deep shot of my tupperware, since I ate my portion of nuts before snapping my picture :) This snack definitely did the trick for me and filled me up enough to keep my hunger feelings at bay throughout the rest of the afternoon! I decided to watch Grey's Anatomy while working on my resume. I don't know why but working in a hospital, even though I am not a doctor, makes me miss watching this show! Around 6:30pm, I decided to have dinner since I was meeting my cousin for tea at 7! I had my leftover Turkey Marinara and added some carrots and hummus for a side of extra veggies and healthy fat!
Side note, I LOVE these pre-portioned plates! My friend found them at Wal-Mart last year to use as a gift for the kids that participated in our fitness and nutrition camp! We had some plates left over and use them all the time as a fun way to portion out our meals. These plates have become more popular since last year and I have seen them sold at Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, and many other stores!
The evening ended with a very much needed catch up session with my cousin! I just got home and am exhausted...so bed time for me so I can be up and running tomorrow!!!