On this page I will post and review products that I've tired.
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GAP: 1969 Long and Lean Jeans
Okay, so these are not directly related to health or fitness but I had to post about how much I love these jeans. These are some of the most comfortable, most durable jeans I own. They're one of the few brands that fit wonderfully and last. I have an old pair that I finally told myself I had to stop wearing. They were a size too big and hung on me. I loved them so much I didn't want to part with them. Finally, a couple weeks ago, I went shopping and replaced them. I have no desire to attempt to wear the larger size. Now that I've been reminded of how amazing the correct size is, I couldn't wear the others.
Don't let the long and lean name mislead you. You do not have to be a 5'10" 105 pound super model to wear these jeans. They actually fit my curvy figure better than the curvy style jeans. They even fit better than GAP's boot cut style...I'm usually a boot cut kind of girl; boot cut is usually what works/looks best on me! These, by far, are my favorite and most flattering jeans. They hug my curves perfectly, but are also slimming. I like that they are a mid-rise jean. Some people think that means "Mom jean," but they are not. This style works for me because it hides that pesky skin-muffin top.
By the way... Ladies, if you have muffin top, STOP wearing the low (or even lower) rise jeans. They're very unflattering.
Anyway, the jeans... They're $59.95-$69.95 a pair. Watch for sales; GAP will often have their jeans on sale at 20%-30% off.
My Favorite Jeans
While I'm at it... The other jeans I really like are AE's Original Boot. They're very comfortable; second to my GAP jeans. AE also has a boyfriend style that are nice. The original boot style varies from $39.95-$49.95, so they are slightly cheaper than the GAP jeans. AE frequently has sales on jeans too.
My Second Favorite Jeans
Another Great Style
Rockin' Body DVDs by Beachbody
I have not yet tried ALL of the workouts on the DVDs but of the ones I tried I was in the middle as far as I feel about them (thus far).
The positives - The workouts were fun, energetic, and the moves were not too difficult. The instruction was good, so I knew what to do, which was helpful.
The negative - The calorie burn for the amount of time wasn't all that great. I worked up a good sweat but felt that the calories I burned for the time put in was just not what I wanted. If I'm working for a total of 80 calories, I should burn well over 500 calories... NOT in the 400s.
The workouts that I tried...
The Rock It Out workout was great for getting a little cardio/strength combo. I could definitely feel it in my muscles. This is a workout that's used more for toning than it is for cardio though, so my calorie burn was not impressive for 45 minutes worth of work.
I also did the Hard Core Abs workout. This was a short (ten minute) workout that mixed some dance type moves with abs. Again, it wasn't an impressive calorie burn, but I felt it in my abs when I was working... Not so much this morning, which isn't bad but it isn't good either. I LIKE to feel the soreness later. I was hoping to feel sore upon awakening....Not so much.
The last workout I did was the Party Express 25 minute dance workout. After 55 minutes of work, despite a low burn, I was starting to feel tired. This might be due to my body being crazy lately but I was getting tired.... I may not have put in as much effort which could've impacted on my burn (maybe). It was a decent workout, but again I felt my burn was a little low for what I did. .
There are still four workouts I haven't done. I'll likely wait until a day when I have time to do another workout too, just to get the burn that I need. I'm excited to try them but I don't have the highest expectations as far as the burn goes. I'm thinking that this is one of Beachbody's lower intensity workouts.... Not at all similar to what I've heard about workouts like TurboFire. Overall though, it was a nice change of pace. I like to mix it up when I workout, so this will most definitely have a place in my rotation.
The price that I paid (Groupon deal) was nice too!
I recently signed up for Team Beachbody, as a coach (feel free to contact me if you're interested in that, by the way). When I signed up I did the "free" challenge pack. Basically, unless I call and cancel/return the product, I'll pay for it later (but at a discounted price). I'm sure I won't be returning the workout DVD, but I'm already sure I'll be cancelling Shakeology. As a Team Beachbody Coach, I'm definitely (and honestly) recommending the product. I'd gladly replace my current protein shake with it. I know that from the Beachbody business perspective I should be trying to sell it, but if I didn't like it, I wouldn't. Instead, I'd just not say anything about it. The truth is that I LOVE it.
Don't get me wrong, Shakeology is WONDERFUL. It tastes amazing. Honestly it is one of the best tasting supplement/replacement shakes I've ever eaten. I got the chocolate and it's nice and thick when the ice and milk are added (some get too runny). It's like drinking a treat-type of shake. It has an awesome flavor that reminded me a bit of brownie batter. Oh, yes, it is to die for!
It is also filling. I had a shake this morning for breakfast and am just now starting to feel hungry and it's my snack time. It fits perfectly with my routine of eating small meals every few hours.
The reason I'm cancelling? The price. At the discounted coach price it is $89 for a 30 day supply. For me, that's too much. I can get an "okay" powder for a fraction of the price and at this point in time, that's what makes sense for me (remember, I am a single girl paying all of my bills, including a recent surgery bill, independently). If my Beachbody coaching proves to be something profitable, I'd probably spend the "extra" income on Shakeology. It just doesn't fit into my budget right now.
However, if you can afford it, I HIGHLY recommend it. I
You can find these in the frozen section at the grocery store. Yoplait has put out little pouches that contain frozen fruit and chunks of yogurt. You use half the package in the blender, with a cup of milk, and you have a smoothie. When I made one, I felt that it was too thin for my liking. I will probably use half a cup of milk next time. I might even start with a quarter cup and add to it as needed. I also added a scoop of protein powder to mine. I like to have a protein shake post-workout, and this definitely hit the spot! I tried the strawberry-banana and will try other flavors in the future. My protein powder is chocolate so I'll stick to fruits that chocolate compliments.
Polar Heart Rate Monitors
I have a basic HRM, the Polar FT7. It's not fancy. It's not very pretty. It was pretty cheap as far as HRMs go. It does what I need it to, and probably more. I love my HRM and have not had any problems with it. I bought in the Spring or Summer of 2011 and it works well. There are fancier, prettier models but this one is okay with me. I couldn't see spending a lot more money for a different one simply because I liked how it looked. The color pink is not worth that much money! I would definitely recommend the Polar FT7 for someone who wants a basic HRM. If you want something more, check into the other products Polar offers.
I have been hearing about this wonderful thing called PB2 for quite a while. Bell Plantation makes this product and it is dry peanut butter... At far fewer calories and much less fat that regular peanut butter (even reduced fat). All you have to do is mix two tablespoons of PB2 with one tablespoon of water, and you have the consistency of peanut butter. It comes in both regular and chocolate. Both are really good! My jar of regular is about gone. PB2 is not carried in mainstream grocery stores. You can find it at sites online, as well as in some specialty stores (visit the Bell Plantation website to find a retailer near you).
I highly recommend this product. You can enjoy the taste of peanut butter (you can also use it for recipes!) at a fraction of the calories and 85% less fat than regular peanut butter.
Omron HBF-306C Fat Loss Monitor
This is the latest gadget (okay, TOY) I've purchased. I love it! I originally thought about buying one of these to monitor my fat percentage and fat loss. I've been way too focused on BMI, which is an important measure, but I have issues with BMI. BMI does not take into account muscle and skin. BMI will give you a value based on height and weight. That's it. You can be healthy but your BMI might say you are overweight because you have so much muscle. BMI is a decent measure, but I think it's a little outdated. The fat loss monitor shows you what your percentage of body fat is. This one also includes a card that shows you where you fall in terms of what's "normal" and such.. According to my BMI, I'm still overweight. My body fat is in the healthy range. I feel that measuring my body fat percentage is a more accurate measure for me. I work out. I have muscle. I also have extra skin. I'm still working toward weight loss and my weight is higher than I'd like, but it is comforting to know that when it comes to body fat, I'm considered "normal." I'm healthy!
I saw this particular monitor on a fellow SP user, Katie's website. She has also accomplished a significant weight loss, and is a great inspiration. Check out her page sometime (I'm not getting paid for that; I just like her page!). About the monitor...I liked what I saw, liked the price, and decided to give it a try. So far? I love it! I probably play with it a little too often (more often than I should be measuring my fat percentage, I'm sure) but I think that's because it's new. New toys are fun, right kids?!
Vitalicious does not even begin to describe these amazing little treats!! Due to me watching my carbs, I do not eat these daily, but ohhhh are they a nice treat. They're also good for breakfast (especially any of the chocolate varieties with some PB2). I try to get my main carb in the morning, at breakfast time. The rest of the day I eat carbs, but not usually foods that are high carb. Anyway, these are an awesome treat that is not high in calories. They are definitely worth changing a few things around to enjoy. They are available in stores and on the product website but I ordered mine from Amazon. This was a huge sampler pack and included a box of their brownies (also amazing). If you haven't tried them before, this is a great way to see what you like, and what you don't (if such a thing in Vitaland exists!). As of now I have not found one that I do not like.