A week ago, I lost my best friend.
It still doesn't feel real.
There are moments when I am angry, moments when I am sad, moments when I am confused. But mostly, there are moments where I smile.
I want to be mad and sad all the time and feel like I should be, but I just can't. I am so fortunate to have had someone like Z in my life. She taught me the true meaning of friendship and I can never thank her enough for doing that.
So when I think things are getting dark and am missing her more than I can handle, I think of all the wonderful times together and all the things she brought into my life. And then I smile...
I smile because I was lucky enough to have this girl in my life for 22 years.
And I smile because I know wherever she is now she having that same affect on someone else.
Z, I will miss you more than you know. Thanks for being the best friend a girl could ever have. While I can never replace you, I will always strive to have friends as true as you were to me and to be that friend in return.
Until we meet again, my friend...
I love you now and always. You are always in my heart.
Now that I have cute new workout clothes (thanks Fabletics) and a new perspective on my actual workouts (focus more, workout harder), I decided to make a workout schedule to follow for the week.
My issue is I always do whatever at the gym. No specific routine except that I usually do cardio first and then weights. I am not a fitness expert but I heard that you burn more calories if you do weight training after your cardio.
With that said, I decided to put together a schedule that helps me stay on track and work different muscles groups each day. I go off a 6 day schedule (one day to rest) because I that's what I aim for each week. I like to hit the gym at least 5 days a week and then do a class or other workout one day. This could be a barre class at my gym, regular or Pilates sculpt at my local Pilates studio, or a home workout like T25 or some of the TIU You Tube workouts. By the way, if you have not seen it, the Tone it Up ladies (TIU) have a new show on Bravo. Definitely watch it...it will inspire you to not only work out, but also start a multi-million dollar business with your best friend! Oh and the guys don't mind having it on in the background...lots of hot girls running around in little workout outfits. :)
Ok back to the schedule... My schedule consists of 20-30 minutes of cardio (you can do more if you want) and then muscle work. I try to stick to the days as listed, however, if there is a class I want to do on day 2, I will move things around. Also, there are those days where honestly, you just don't want to do squats, right??
For "free weights" I do a series of arm workouts using 7.5 to 10 lbs weights. Here's a great arm workout video to use. Thanks TIU ladies. :)
For "kettle bells," I do this workout (seen here).
For "ball" workouts (so creatively named, I know), I use the big workout ball and do a series of sit ups, pushups, leg squeezes and side/oblique crunches.
"Crunches" can be standard crunches or you can do this awesome workout which I LOVE.
The first move is a great workout for your abs and your arms & chest! Yay for Jillian Michaels!
I am no fitness expert but hopefully you can use this a guide to plan out some of your workouts. I made a separate image for my iPhone to keep on the lock screen and wallpaper to keep me on track.No excuses!
Feel free to download it by clicking here or on the image below...(there's a big white border around it so it scales on the iphone5 - it's supposed to be there!)
Needless to say, I know I have an addiction. But when one has an addiction to something and is trying to quit, they try to find something to help fill the void and ease the pain.
Smokers can smoke those new electronic cigarettes (confession, I kind of want to try the non-nicotine blue ones...they look so cool). Drinkers can drink non-alcoholic beers or virgin margaritas (SO not the same - says Tequila fan Jill) to least get the taste part covered.
But what do Lulu addicts do?
I'll tell you. We try to find substitutions. Pieces that look good, are high quality (like the Lulu of old) and that are not as expensive. However, this search can be frustrating due to the lack of options out there that fit this criteria. The closest I have found is Zella at Nordstrom. I do love their stuff but the selection is not as vast and I have not really fallen in love with their colors/patterns.
Fabletics is hands down, my new favorite substitute (note I said sub, not replacement - I cannot make a permanent switch yet).
If you are not familiar with Fabletics, here's the scoop direct from their website (also because I am too lazy to re-type it):
Fabletics is an exciting new collaboration between actress Kate Hudson and the founders of JustFab. Fabletics delivers high-performance athletic wear at an affordable price. Fabletics apparel focuses on fit, function and style, offering complete, coordinated Outfits for your workout and beyond. All of our high-quality apparel and accessories are designed in sunny Los Angeles.
The best part of Fabletics is their VIP program. Basically, you join for free and once you sign up and become a VIP member, you pay $49.95 a month to get a 2-3 piece outfit of your choice. I mean, you can't really even buy a top at Lulu for that much and with Fabletics you get at least two items (top and bottom). '
On the first of the month, you get a email showing you selected outfits for the month. You then get to choose an outfit (note most are $49.95 but some might be more if they have more items), pick from the available colors and patterns and then it's sent to you within a week. You do have to click to see the options because the main photo of the outfit they show you is not limited to the colors in the picture. You can choose from so many other colors/patterns and totally customize your look.
How fun is that?
Want to now know the BEST part??? If you don't love any of the outfits selected, you can skip the month and are not charged anything. You just have to skip by the 10th of the month otherwise, you will be charged. And you can cancel at anytime, just let them know before the next billing cycle and you're out.
Ok now there is even something BETTER than all of that...Ready for it??
When you sign up, you get 50% off your first outfit!! Seriously. An entire outfit for $25!!
On my first month, I got the following pieces and LOVE them!!
I got the pants in a black snakeskin pattern, though, and they are awesome. Everything was high quality, not sheer and comfy. The jacket is super light and soft but very breathable. Similar to the Lululemon Swiftlys but with a zipper...oh and half the price! :)
I just ordered my second outfit for Jan and am super excited. I got this cute little get up but chose the camo capris and a blue headband instead! Yay!!
Fabletics Lima Capri - Camo
So go ahead and try them and if you do, use this link to help a sister out! Full disclosure, I do get referral credits for anyone who signs up with this link. But know that I was not compensated to write this post...this is my true opinion and I just wanted to share my excitedness with all of you! PS - I know that's not a word but when you are excited, weird things happen.
Try it. Try it. Try it. Then let me know your thoughts, k??
Have you ever tried Fabletics? Share your opinions below if so! If not, what subscriptions do you recommend?
Words to Live By is my pinterest board where I post all my favorite quotes. The one above is my newest addition.
"When the light disappears, our true colors shine."
I have never in my life believed this as much as I do now. Rough times bring out the best and the worst in people. It's during these times that you see people for who they really are.
Sometimes you are impressed because you see someone shine that you maybe never noticed before.
Other times you are let down by people so consumed with themselves and their image that they forget the real meaning of friendship.
And sometimes you are just reminded that your true friends are true for a reason.
True friends, I love you for who you are - beautiful inside and out. You mean the world to me.
Happy Friday everyone!
One of the things I love most about a new year are all the endless possibilities laying ahead. It's our time to look at the past year and realize all the things we accomplished (yay) and all the things we never did (oops).
I gave up making new years resolutions years ago because, frankly, I never remembered them after the first two weeks of the year. I mean, it's easy to remember to "work out more" and "eat better" but those are things we should be doing all year long. And if we don't remember those in our every day life, we will definitely feel the consequences.
The past month and a half has been really difficult for me as one of my closet friends is battling for her life (stupid cancer). While some people are turning to religion to comfort themselves, I am using her spirit and how she lives her life to inspire me and get me through the day.
So in honor of her, I am not making resolutions, but new personal goals; not just for 2014 but for life. All inspired by my beloved, Z - the best friend a girl could have. I am going to call them Zoals ("Z" goals) and am going to continue to work on them throughout the years.
Zoal #1 - Be a Better Friend. I am listing this for numerous reasons but really because in this trying time, I have realized the importance of friendships; specifically old friends (parents, sisters and husbands count here too). It is these people who know you well and have seen you grow. They know what you have been through and why you are the way you are today. When you really think about that, it's pretty cool to have that. Z has been my best friend since we were 12 years old. We have been through good and bad and still love each other through it all. It's a special relationship: one that takes work, yet it so natural at the same time. There is potential to have this with all my friends so I need to be better friend to them, to get it in return.
So how do I be a better friend, you ask? Reach out more. Call more. Check in. And most definitely, make plans to see each other. You never know when you are not going to have that chance again so it's so important to do it. Also, one thing I have learned to live by...don't hold too high of expectations for your friends. Everyone is different and there is no "best friend" mold. Appreciate them for who they are and how they enrich your life. If you start to do this more, you will be able to maintain and keep lasting relationships.
"Wherever you are...it is your friends who make your world"
Posted on the actual champagne bottle label I sent to Z asking her to be a bridesmaid in 2009.
Zoal #2 - MAKE the time to do what you love. Writing is passion of mine and something I love to do. I also love being creative whether it's making and selling necklaces, creating arts and craft projects, or painting. When I do these things, I feel at ease. My stress seems to melt away and I'm happy. So why would I NOT do something that I love? Great question. Time. There's never enough time. But that's not an excuse. If I have learned anything from Z's ordeal is that we have to take advantage of the time we have. We have to appreciate what we have now, because we won't have it forever. With that said...expect a lot of DIYS, recipes, new Etsy store items and hopefully more consistent blog posts in the near future.
Zoal #3 - Take Care of Yourself/Your Body. I know what you are saying...a work out/diet goal. But this one is different. There's a saying that basically says...you only have one body so take care of it while you have it. We do this with material objects, children and pets...why would we not do it for ourselves? It's a known fact that if you eat well and exercise, you will improve your health. In Z's case, she is focused on exercise and nutrition and there is no doubt that has helped her in her struggle and recovery. We only get one chance to take care of ourselves so why not take some extra effort and learn how to do it right? From now on, I vow to work out harder and focus more on the actual workout and the benefits to my body/health. As for eating...thank goodness I love Chia Seeds and Kale (amazing recipes to come).
Re-using this pic again but seriously, it's really not that hard to do if you want it!
Zoal #4 - Stress Less. Seeing a loved one battle what Z has been going through is honestly one of the most horrible things to witness. I so admire her strength throughout this fight and although I wish I could take the pain away and cure her, I can't. What I can do is be inspired by her persistence to get through this trying time. I can look at what she is going through and put my little dramas in perspective. The little things are not worth stressing over. There are much bigger and worse things to deal with. If/when I do come across those bigger things, whether this year or really, ever, I hope to take them on with as much strength, determination and grace as Z is doing right now.
So there you have it, my Zoals for 2014 and beyond. I hope that by writing them down and reading them every day, I can really work on making them a reality each and every day. I also hope I can inspire some of you to do some of these things as well. If not for me, then for my beloved Z!
Happy New Year everyone! Feel free to share your "Zoals", goals or resolutions below! Love you all!