Friday, January 14, 2011

Chowey does Pilates Reformer!

This year I wanted to try something new with fitness, so I signed up for a reformer class. I have taken two sessions and already LOVE IT! Lets get real though, I used to teach Pilates, PiYo and yoga so I am a little biased towards these types of exercises. Nonetheless, I think the class is something a lot of people can enjoy.

Here are the basics; Pilates reformer focuses on strength flexibility by using a reformer machine. Please note the machine below:


Its really hard to explain how the machine works. Here is a video that shows how the machine works:

At first it seems a little disorienting,  but I really grew to love it! I like this class because it combines moves I already love from mat Pilates, but adds a little more resistance. The machine provides more challenge for strength moves and allows the exercisers to get further in to stretches as well.

The biggest problem about these classes are they are EXPENSIVE. For me to take 6 classes at Urban Active it was around 120 dollars, I can’t remember the exact amount. At Pilates studios it can be even more.

Is the money worth it? I guess it depends on how much you like the class. For me, it is a nice change from mat Pilates, but I also think you can get use good of a work out in a mat class (maybe even harder) as well.

On a random note, I am really proud of the dinner me and Kevin made last night.

We boiled some broccoli and then shocked it in cold water. This is the first time I have EVER boiled broccoli. I know, I am a little behind on my cooking skills!


While the broc was cooking I also boiled sweet potatoes. After a few minutes I took them out and fried them in olive oil, garlic salt and black pepper.


To top it off we marinated some tofu in BBQ sauce and teriyaki sauce and threw it on the grill. It was SUPER filling and really good!


I am off to Toledo now, talk later!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Numbers to Happiness

WARNING: if you suffer from any type of disordered eating this post might be triggering, as it mentions issues surrounding ideal weight and weight loss.
Historically speaking, as the new begins I set a weight loss goal. Well, this year I am setting a new kinds of goal, that is more nebulously related to my weight, but with a  positive twist.

2011 is going to be about finding my happy weight. 2011 is going to be about creating my own plan.

My life up till this point has been about reaching a number, a weight.  Depending on my weight at the time, my goal weight has changed, but in the back of my mind I always wanted to return to my lowest weight, which is 137.


My lowest weight is this constant thought in the back of my mind. I always have this voice telling me that I need to reach that number again. It feels like there is something magical about it. Somewhere deep inside me, I believe that reaching that number will solve all my problems in life. I will be filled with confidence, self love, and happiness.

This makes no sense. When I was 137 I was probably less happy then I am now. I feel pretty good now, do I even need to lose weight? Medically speaking, I would be at lower risk for certain negative health outcomes if I was within in my healthy weight range, but still, maybe this is the best weight for me.


There is plenty of research on what is the “healthiest” weight for a person to be at, but like with other health choices, you have to weigh the pros and cons. If I am going to be unhappy living the lifestyle needed to remain within the “healthy” range is it worth the decreased risk? Is it worth it to live a lifestyle to increases my risk for negative outcomes, if the increase risk is slight, maybe even negligible?

This discussion will continue, but for now back to my goals!

My challenge is to find my happy weight and the healthy happy lifestyle that goes along with it.

For so long I felt that my focus should be reaching that number. For so long I felt that the problem was that I couldn’t follow my exercise routines and diets close enough. I was the problem, and the ultimate end goal was a number. Maybe the problem was that my routines and plans were unrealistic for me. Maybe using weight as a goal isn’t what’s best for me. Maybe I stop try something new.

My new plan is to find balance. I know what it takes to be healthy and take care of myself. I am going to try to let go of arbitrary markers of “good health” or an ideal figure go. This is going to be hard for me, and I still have so much to say on this topic, but this is where I am going to live it for now.
I look forward to sharing more as my journey continues.

Oh, and I want to run a marathon this year, but we will talk about that later too!

Monday, January 10, 2011

2010: Time for learning, time for change

2010 has been a CRAZY year for me. Lets take a look back …


Basically January till July I was exhausted from school and teaching group exercise. July till September I lost hope in my dreams of working in reproductive health advocacy. September through November my passion for advocacy was rejuvenated, but I was exhausted from the election, school, and being away from Kevin. November till now was all about wrapping up the loose ends.


At the beginning of the school year I had to make some difficult decisions. I had to decide to leave Columbus sooner than I originally planned. I had to quit my job, and begin trying to find something new. I was scared. I knew my way around Columbus, I had a job there, I had school, volunteer positions, and friends. In the end I had to decide what was important to me, and in the end decided the “easier” choice wasn’t the “happy” choice for me.

I hope to write a post about my experience with weight watchers and weight loss this past year. This was another point where I had to make a decision between what I was comfortable with, and what would actually make me happy.

I also will write a post on my engagement experience. It was an interesting transition going from girlfriend to fiancé, and it taught me a lot about myself, about my partner and my beliefs about relationships.

A lot of these experiences taught me to follow my heart and do what is best for me, no matter my own expectations.

Some of my good fortune this year was luck. Getting my job was part luck, but it was part me too. I can’t control what jobs are out there, but I can control my background of experiences, and the connections I have. I think if you work hard, the luck/being in the right place at the right time all comes together.

Also I had to take risks this year, I had to do something with out being certain what would happen. I am a girl who likes to plan, so doing something with out a plan scares me to DEATH, but I took a chance and everything turned out great.

In the end, I am so happy. I really do feel like the girl who has it all. While there are new challenges ahead, I just want to take this moment to feel completely and utterly thankful for all that I have in my life, and the amazing journey I have taken the past year to get here.

2011, here I come!

Welcome home!

Ok, I have been gone a long time! Rest assure, I will be back soon though. Here is a little video of our new home in Cleveland.

Welcome home, Kevin and Ashley!