Friday, February 3, 2017

Favorites Friday

Favorite Workouts

1.  Upper Body Workout For People Who Get Bored Easily

So I was dumb and over-trained my lower body towards the end of last week (long story short, I didn't take a rest day when I should have and did a supposed total body workout that really was geared heavily towards the legs, which was not good since leg day was the previous day), and was feeling a lot of fatigue in my legs.  As a result I had to take a rest day and then switch out a leg workout for an arm workout.  I've done this arm workout before, but had kind of forgotten about it until I chose it for my schedule over the weekend.  It was exactly what I needed since it didn't involve the legs really at all.  It's challenging and had my arms quivering by the end, but I felt so empowered and accomplished by the end!  I love the "Bored Easily" series from Fitness Blender.  Even if there's something you hate in the routine, at least you only have to do it once, then you move on with your life!

The big win from this workout is that it gave an adjustment to certain lifting exercises that were making my back mad.  Typically for things like tricep kickbacks, closed rows, etc you bend at the waist with a flat back and do both arms at the same time.  Ever since I hurt my back earlier in January, these movements have bothered me immensely and put all kinds of pinching and pressure in my lower back.  In this video Kelli took a split stance and did one arm at a time with her back angled up a little more, and I found that I had zero pain when doing the exercises that way!

2.  No Equipment Butt and Thigh Workout

Kelli released this new workout on Monday and I immediately put it in my favorites list after I completed it!  I actually did do it with weights since I wanted to amp up the challenge, but even without weights it is quite the workout! (The set of squat holds immediately after a set of jump squats is just plain mean!)  I was sweating like crazy 5 minutes into the workout and felt really tired afterwards, so it's definitely a keeper.

Favorite Meals

1.  Avgolemono Chicken Soup with Rice

So this soup is very ugly, hence there being no personal picture of it, but it was pretty delicious!  It was one of those total comfort soups, and the combination of the lemon, egg and rice was pretty magical.  It was simple to make, filling and is very affordable to make.  It was also low calorie and high protein and I'll definitely be making it again.

Favorite Non-Fitness Stuff

1.  Jackie

This weekend we saw that movie "Jackie", which honestly I was kind of shoulder shrugging about because I'm not the biggest fan of Natalie Portman.  While I acknowledge that she is very pretty and a fairly decent actress, she just comes across as a bit snooty and borderline Gweneth Paltrow-ish and it grates on my nerves.  Anyway, I went into it expecting the movie to be like most of these biopics, adequate at best, a train wreck at worst, but ended up being pleasantly surprised.  It honestly is one of the top movies I've seen in the last few months!

I fully will eat crow here and give Natalie her due, she was really incredible in the film and I felt she really played Jackie quite well.  Thankfully she had a great script (which seems to be half the battle in these biopics), but she genuinely had a lot of range and played the role very well.  As I mentioned, the script was tight, smart and really focused on just the week or so after the JFK assassination.  There have been a million movies on JFK but none that have really focused on Jackie Kennedy, so it was very unique in that way.  Also, the girly girl part of me was swooning over every single outfit in the movie!  They did a fantastic job with the costumes.  Anyway, I can fully recommend the movie!

2.  Playing For Change

If you know anything about me or have followed the blog for a bit, music is a huge part of my life.  I 100% believe that music has the power to change lives (it has changed mine many times), inspire and yes, heal the things that are wrong in the world.  I can be cynical in a lot of ways, but my belief in the power of music has never wavered and if anyone thinks I'm a silly dreamer for that, so be it.  I had a moment this week where I just realized I needed a mental health break from social media, the news and getting swallowed in anger.  (It's a fine line to walk, staying informed while also not being consumed and overwhelmed.)  As I have many times I decided to turn to music, specifically Bob Marley, when I stumbled on this set of videos from this organization called Playing for Change.

I didn't realize how badly I needed to see/hear these until they were in front of me, and I definitely had a few emotional moments going through them...basically this organization has musicians from all over the world record a song together (each person records their part separately in their country and then it's all put together).  It's much more beautiful and eloquent than I'm describing, it's staggering how many countries participate and how many various instruments are used, but the end result is just absolutely breathtaking.  Seeing so many people from all over the world come together and create something beautiful put me in a better frame of mind.  They also teach music education around the world!

I've linked to a couple of the videos below, but you really should go check out their Youtube channel, there were so many wonderful and inspiring performances that it was hard to choose which ones to link!


  1. That gimme shelter song is beyond AMAZING with all those talented artists! Thanks for sharing.

    1. Isn't that wonderful? That's one of my favorite ones they did!