Let's Talk, Episode Two: Online Exercise Videos!

Now that the weather's warming up, I have really started being more active! It's really hard to walk your dog in -7 degree temperatures, right?! Poor puppy must have thought I forgot what a walk was, or thought that the few times we did go on a walk, that her owner looked like a giant balloon in all her layers. 

But here's the thing: I don't do gyms. I can't find any nearby that are worth the price. Sure, there are a few that are only $10 a month, but none of them are all that close to either work or my apartment. During January and February I was going to a yoga class twice a week, but then my teacher opened her own studio way out in West County, and out of the way for any drive. I do miss the class atmosphere, but gas is too expensive these days. For me, I don't see the point in driving 20 minutes out of the way to walk on a treadmill or lift weights... because I can just exercise at home! 

I've really gotten into it lately. Last year, I did them on and off again, but never really committed. I just wasn't feeling super motivated. I walked Cher, maybe did a video or two a week, but couldn't bring myself to get into the (healthy) habit of making it a priority. 

In January of this year, I started researching videos online. I first discovered Cassey Ho and her Blogilates website and video channel

She is one of my favorites! She's just too stinking cute. Her POP Pilates videos are especially fun to do because she uses pop music in the background, and heavens knows I am a child of pop music. Some of her videos that I love to do are: POP Cardio: Summer Sweatfest, Victoria's Secret Angel Arm Slimming Workout, and the Flat Belly Fat Burner. That last one is pretty intense, and after doing it maybe once or twice a week for about a month, I can do it smoothly without struggling! Before finding Cassey, I'd never heard of HIIT workouts. The last video link is a HIIT workout - which stands for High Intensity Interval Training. That's why it was so tough for me. I think I'm used to training with similar workout intensity levels throughout my entire exercise times. 

Another sexy lady I follow on YouTube is Keaira LaShae.

She is fit and fabulous, and even has videos about how to sexy dance in stilettos (you know I've tried that one, stilettos and all!). She is also a singer and performer, so I'm going to download some of her music later this week to start practicing DJing with. Support the ladies! But Keaira has some really fun workout videos on her Superhero Fitness channel. The Fun Latin Soca Dance Workout is perfect for me because I've really gotten into reggae/dancehall/soca music lately. I also have done her appropriately-titled video 10 Min Workout From Hell to Make Your Body Look Like Heaven. THIS VIDEO IS NOT JOKING AROUND. The quality isn't the best on the production, but I barely finished this workout the first time. I'm pretty sure my upstairs neighbor was thinking I was having a cussing fit for no reason. The last video I do frequently from Keaira is the 10 Minute Fat Burning Kickboxing one. Can you tell I like short videos? Keaira announced recently that she is expecting (8months along!), and I'm very happy for her, although that means we won't be seeing new videos soon, shoot!

Okay, y'all, wanna know what my secret weapon video series is? It's the absolutely hysterically weird and retro 8 Minute series. You can find them all on the IAMFITNESS4LIFE video channel. This crazy ripped guy who looks like a GI Joe figurine shouts "Hey, gang!" at you and has some goofy catch quips that he drops ("Imagine what you want the buttocks to look like!"). Not to mention this crazy getup: 

What in the heck...
The ones I do almost every other day are 8 Minute Abs, 8 Minute Buns, and 8 Minute Arms. I don't worry about the legs one because I get enough of that with Keaira's videos and walking puppy.

As for how all of this is going... very well! Since about last January, I've lost approximately 12lbs, which I can attribute mostly to adopting Cher. Look, being momma to a fur baby is healthy! I knew one of the reasons I wanted a dog was to have a walking/jogging companion, especially being a young woman who often walks/jogs after dark. It definitely helped! My mom has started to comment that I'm looking noticeably more fit, and that's good news. One motivator I've kept loosely in mind is hoping to maybe make it back to my high school weight. I'm fairly close, but I have some work cut out for me if I'm going to make that goal! To get back there, I know I'm going to have to seriously focus on cardio because I know that I maintained a steady lower weight (I was the same weight from about the age of 14-18) from being active in sports. Another big motivator is that my body changes quickly. I love to see how I can sculpt a certain part. My arms are finally starting to show some significant definition, which really excites me because my arms are short and stubby! For instance, here is a comparison of the same side of my body with a similar pose. The photograph on the top is from August 24th, 2013. This was taken at the A Tad of Plaid party that London Calling held. That's the fellah I often talk about, Nick. He used to DJ at London Calling so I was there a lot. Aside from a bit thicker, I was also blonder, how about that! The photograph on the bottom is from last Thursday with my lovely friend Lexi. You can also tell that my face has thinned out a little bit as that sort-of dimple on my left cheek is more apparent. It's pretty cool to see my progress showing up in photos! One very noticeable thing that's happening with my arms is that bone on the very top. It's totally sticking out now, and is pretty pointy. I don't think Nick will want to be getting cuddly on my shoulders anymore...  

The new ink is from Lauren Busiere!
I'm not gonna lie, I actually did take some "before" photos about a month ago, and wanted to use them for comparison later, but then I accidentally deleted them off my phone. I forgot that when you delete images out of one photo album on your iPhone, they typically are erased from any other album that they live in. Oops! I'll warn you though and I will likely be totally vain little lady and post some photos later after I've really hit where I want to be at. Sorry in advance for any bikini pictures that surface later. Booyah!

Do you do any videos at home? Or do you prefer the gym? Everyone has their preferences!