Cute Workout Clothes for CHEAP!

Hello Everyone!

So every girl (or guy) who works out knows the struggle: cute workout clothes are so expensive! If you walk into the Nike outlet, Lululemon, or any sporting goods store, a good pair of leggings could be something like 80 dollars or more. I’m sorry, but you will never see me spending that much money on just one pair of leggings.

However, over the years, I’ve discovered some other places that have clothes that are just as cute and inexpensive!

This top is from Reebok, and I got it from Goodwill. It wasn’t used, and still had the original tags on when I picked it up! Now, be warned, when you shop the activewear section in Goodwill or Community Aid, you really need to pick through and inspect everything because a lot of the stuff can be pretty gross. However, there are usually a few items that aren’t used or were barely worn, and those are of course the ones you want to pick up! I have gotten my favorite Adidas shorts from Goodwill, along with a few workout tops and sports bras. Again, be careful and take a good look at everything, but don’t discount Goodwill. You never know what you will find!

I got these RBX leggings from TJ Maxx. Now if you know me (or have read any of my past posts), you will know that half of my wardrobe is from TJ Maxx. And my workout clothes drawer is no different. I think I spent about 15 dollars on these capri-leggings! The price range for leggings at TJ Maxx that I’ve seen can be between 12-25 dollars, depending on the brand, for leggings at TJ Maxx. I have also gotten some of my favorite full length, high waisted leggings from Target. It’s been a while, but I’m pretty sure they can be in the 20 dollar range at Target.

Now, sneakers can be pretty tricky when if comes to affordability. You can get sneakers at any Target or Kmart, but I’ve been there and I’ve done that and I do not recommend it. If you’re serious about your workouts, you really need the technology and support from Nike or Adidas or something like that. Now, you don’t have to spend a million dollars, either, if you do some smart shopping! I got my favorite gym shoes, which are black Adidas sneakers, for about 40 dollars at TJ Maxx last summer! That, and if you go to an outlet store and go to the clearance rack, you can find some cute sneakers that are at a pretty good price.

Lastly, whenever I’m running I need to wear a baseball cap to keep my hair in place! I recently bought this hat from the Morgainz Collection, and I love it! The Morgainz Collection was started by my blogger friend Morgan, and all of her hats are super cute and inexpensive! That, and she is expanding her line very soon! She will also be stocking leggings and crop tops, and the leggings will be up on her website soon! So, if you are interested in supporting her super cute brand, you can use my 10% off coupon code!! It’s gingerintrovert 🙂

Let me know if you guys also have any tips for saving money on workout clothes, I would love to hear them!

XOXO

L

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Exercising on Vacation?

Hello Everyone!

Today is the first day of summer! And since it’s summertime and almost everyone has at least one trip planned, I thought I would write a little bit about how you can exercise while you’re on vacation. Even if it is the last thing you might want to do while you’re supposed to be relaxing and having fun, but I know that I at least want to be a little proactive with my fitness goals, even on vacation. So, I thought about it, and these are some of the things that I have done in the past to keep myself on track, without a gym nearby to count on.

Research ahead of time.

A week or two before you go on vacation, do a little bit of research. If you’re going to a hotel, does it have a gym or a pool you can swim laps in? Are the roads near where you’re staying safe for running? Also, maybe look on YouTube and find some hotel-friendly workout videos! I highly suggest Ballet Beautiful and Blogilates, they’re both Pilates based mat workouts that don’t need equipment and don’t take up an awful lot of space.

Combine site-seeing with your workouts.

This kind of goes hand-in-hand with doing your research. See if there are some hiking trails with beautiful views you could go see. If you’re going to the beach, go for a run on the beach! Rent a bike and ride it around the town where you’re staying. It’s also fun (and usually surprisingly inexpensive) to rent a canoe on a lake, too!

Come prepared.

Whenever I travel, I usually pack an exercise band or a resistance band in my suitcase, because working out with those in a hotel or a house can be pretty challenging! Also (and stick with me on this one), gliding disks don’t take up a lot of space in your suitcase, and those workouts are always plenty challenging for me. If you don’t have disks, use paper plates, plastic baggies that you can tie around your feet, or even those dumb bra inserts that they always put in swimsuits that I usually just pull out and throw away (and they work surprisingly well, under the circumstances). Bring along small things like this and stick to them if you don’t want to run or bike, but don’t have a hotel gym. They do the trick for short periods of time, like a week long vacation!

Work with what you’ve got.

Even if you forget (which has happened to me plenty of times), there’s still lots you can do with a beach/bath towel (as a makeshift yoga mat) and a smartphone. YouTube has been a lifesaver many many times! Just look up “hotel workout” or “apartment workout” and plenty of options will appear.

Be realistic.

Let’s be real for a minute. We all have the best intentions to keep up with our workouts, but sometimes it just doesn’t pan out the way we thought. And that’s okay! Don’t beat yourself up about it, especially if you’re on a trip to a place like Disney or Orlando where you’re already doing a lot of walking. HAVE FUN!! It’s your vacation! If you want to work out that’s one thing. However, if it’s making you miserable to keep up with your workouts and you feel like you’re missing out on experiences that you paid to be on vacation to experience, just don’t do it! You can always get back on track once you get home, but that’s a whole other blog post 🙂

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I hope this helps! If you have any tricks or tips for keeping track on vacation, please feel free to share them in the comments. I would love to see! And to help you guys out, here are some YoutTube videos that I’ve used in the past, and recommend for you guys… Not just for vacay use, but any time!

 

Tone It Up Love Your Body HIIT 

Blogilates

Rebecca Louise “How To Get A Summer Body” 

Ballet Beautiful 

I use each of these workouts and channels often, and love all of them! I hope you like them, too!

XOXO

L

Summer 2017 Workout Playlist!!

Hello Everyone!

During the summer, my main exercise that I do is running, since I’m home and I can run around our town. That, and it’s so easy to go running on vacation (ex. Running on the beach, etc.). I don’t know about the rest of you, but I find that  putting together a good playlist is crucial to a good workout/running session! I firmly believe that putting together a good playlist is an art… Just like Barney Stinson says about his “Get Psyched” playlist,”It should be all rise!” (If you can’t already tell, How I Met Your Mother has been my binge-watching show of the summer so far.) So, just like last year, I thought I would share it with you!

“Everyday” by Ariana Grande
“Paris” by The Chainsmokers
“Shout Out To My Ex” by Little Mix
“Something Like This” by The Chainsmokers and Coldplay
“Touch” by Little Mix
“Colors” by Halsey
“Bad Liar” by Selena Gomez
“Hair” by Little Mix
“Malibu” by Miley Cyrus
“Most Girls” by Hailee Steinfeld
“Stay” by Zedd and Alessia Cara
“Now or Never” by Halsey
“That’s What I Like” by Bruno Mars
“Shape of You” by Ed Sheeran

I know what you’re thinking… This is definitely a Little Mix heavy playlist! I’ve been really into their music again lately. I go through phases with artists and groups that I’m obsessed with (as I’m sure everyone else does), and I went through a huge Little Mix kick a few years ago in high school. However, they have a lot of great new stuff out now, and those three songs “Hair,” “Touch,” and “Shout Out To My Ex” are my favorites.

If you want to check out my playlist, it is on my Spotify! My username is writerchic 🙂 Come follow me on there, and you’ll see all the weird stuff I like to listen to.

Also, if you were wondering, there are “Barney’s Get Psyched” playlists. If you’re as obsessed with How I Met Your Mother as I am. (I know I’m not the only one!)

Happy running and exercising, everyone!

XOXO

L

Motivation in a fitness rut?

Sometimes, getting up the gumption to work out is difficult.

Whether you’re too tired, too sore, or generally don’t have a whole lot of interest in working out, getting up that motivation can be difficult.

In the last two years, there were multiple (and I mean multiple) times where I wouldn’t work out for a week or two because I just wasn’t feeling it. I’ll admit that I just had a significant period of time pass by without working out regularly. However, I went to Universal to see The Wizarding World of Harry Potter over spring break, and my hotel had a really amazing gym that was usually pretty empty. I went to the gym both of the full days that I was there, and it reminded me how much I love exercising! I’ve kept it up for about a week and a half now, but it is definitely hard to establish the habit like I had before. But it’s so, so worth it! I can’t believe I forgot how much I love exercising, and how amazing it feels to successfully complete a workout.

I feel like a huge part of the problem was that I just wasn’t motivated like I was. I lost the weight and I got comfortable. Too comfortable. It’s so crazy how easily I fell out of a habit I had worked so hard to establish, but the fire just wasn’t there anymore. However, I have recently discovered a couple of things that kindle that fire to work out again. Here are a few of the tricks I have used in the past to motivate myself to get up and get moving when I really don’t feel like it.

Buying new exercise clothes.

Don’t go too crazy, but it’s great incentive to use them and exercise if you spent your hard-earned money on a new tank or pair of sneakers!

Setting out all your clothes and gear ahead of time.

If I set out my bag and my outfit the night before, I am way more likely to get up and out to the gym. It’s one less excuse, because if it’s all picked out already then you don’t have to rummage through your drawers and waste energy on picking out an outfit.

Getting a friend in on the fun!

I always prefer to go to the gym with a friend, and this way you can keep each other accountable. My friend Missy and I go for runs or to the gym together sometimes, and it’s the best motivator to get myself up and out of bed if she’s texting me to get my butt up!

Setting aside your work outs as your “me-time.”

As an introvert, my “me-time” and emotional-recharge time is so important to me. However, I also feel guilty if I just lay like a lump on my bed watching Netflix doing nothing. However, if I go to the gym and watch Netflix on the elliptical, then I’m being productive as well as getting my mind off of my work.

Watching fitness videos and vlogs.

I love it when other people find happiness and joy in fitness as well, and I love to watch videos on health and fitness. I’m not sure why, but I find them so inspiring.

I hope this helped you if you’re in a rut with your workout routine! If you have any tricks as well, please feel free to share in the comments!

XOXO

L

P.S. Want to read more about my weight loss journey? Read about it HERE!

Summer Workout Playlist

Well, Hello!

I don’t know about you, but when I’m out running, I need to listen to songs that I love and can sing along to and just make me want to dance. Because if a song doesn’t make you want to break down and dance it out, what’s the point, right?!? These songs pump me up and get me in the zone, and most importantly, they distract me from the fact that RUNNING SUCKS. Like, it really really sucks. But it’s good for me, so I do it anyway, and these songs have been getting me through those hellish runs in the scorching (beautiful) heat this summer!

Can’t Stop the Feeling!- Justin Timberlake

I. Adore. This. Song. Every time I hear it, I feel the need to dance like a crazy person, even if I’m driving. If you want incredibly fun workouts to do at home, I found this amazing YouTube channel called Saskia’s Dansschool, and they choreographed a Zumba routine to this song! It’s so so much fun, so if you want to check it out, CLICK HERE!!

Good Intentions- Chainsmokers feat BullySongs

The lyrics on this song kind of suck if you really listen. But when you’re running, it’s all about that beat, and this song has a rocking sound to it.

Work from Home- Fifth Harmony

All of Fifth Harmony’s songs have this heat to them, and this song is no exception. This song makes me want to work it and slay that last mile.

Toothbrush- DNCE

I am in love with DNCE’s new EP, all of the songs are so upbeat and fun!

Rock Bottom- Hailee Steinfeld

This song is just beautiful and it also features DNCE, which is another new favorite of mine, as previously mentioned.

Hymn for the Weekend- Coldplay

I love Coldplay’s new sound in this! Drop that beat.

Sit Still, Look Pretty- Daya

This song speaks to me, and makes me push myself to be a Queen who don’t need no man to run her miles for her!

No Money- Galantis

Again, this song speaks to me. On a spiritual level.

YOUTH- Troye Sivan

This song is so smooth that it gets me in the cool down mood. And Troye is amazing. Have you seen the music video? It’s seriously amazing. Go watch it.

Hide Away- Daya

This is such a good cool down song. When I was at school, they played this song during the cool down at my Zumba class and it is so soothing to stretch to.

Head on over to my Spotify account to listen! My username is Writerchic, and the playlist is called Summer 2016 Workout Playlist!

So go ahead, hit play, work it out, and let me know what you think! I also reserve the right to add songs to this playlist, so if you want, you can follow the playlist on Spotify and see what all I add this summer! I’ll post music updates here on the blog, too.

Happy Running!

L

P.S. If you want, you can head over to my Twitter and my Instagram and follow me there, too!

 

Losing It: My journey from 185 to 115 pounds

Hello everyone! Long time, no blog.

I’ve been wanting to write a post about my weight loss for a very long time, and I think that I am finally in a place where I not only feel like I am able to write about the journey fully, but I really want to. So buckle your seat belts, ladies and gents. This is going to be a loong one.

Here are some pictures documenting my weightloss, with my most recent “after” picture in the top left and the “before” picture in the bottom right.

I had always been bigger, I was one of those girls people would call “bigger boned” or, my personal favorite, “stocky.” Blame it on genetics and the fact that I had absolutely no knowledge of what a balanced and nutritious meal looked like. The self-esteem issues, which should really have their own blog post documenting them, started pretty early for me… Around the time I started to go through puberty, which for me started in the fourth grade, was when I started to think that I was different. I was convinced that all of the girls in my school were smaller and thinner than me, and I convinced myself that I was fat. I wasn’t obese at the time, but I was bigger. I was not, however, the biggest girl in my class, like I was convinced that I was. I have never been diagnosed, but as I look back on my memories of how miserable I made myself, I think I had BDD (Body Dysmorphic Disorder), and it is still something I struggle with to this day. But as I said before, I will write another blog post about my struggles with self-image and confidence.

Because of this, ever since the sixth grade, I have gone through two week to month stints of crash diets and intense workout programs that I would find online or in Seventeen magazine. They never lasted long. I would eventually grow tired of these and I would revert back to my unhealthy eating habits. We’re talking rich mac and cheese or TV dinners as after school snacks. I would drink coke like water. My weight increased steadily until I reached 185 pounds in my junior year of high school. I wasn’t happy with how I looked, and I would look in the mirror and cry. I made myself so miserable.

A night in February, 2014 was when it all changed. I can’t explain it, but one night after I finished my homework, I decided that I wanted to work out. There was no pivotal moment where I thought to myself now is the time where I make a change, like in all the other weight loss transformations I’ve watched and read before. I just wanted to work out. I have a picture of what I did that first night in my first fitness journal that I started that night, along with the February 2014 calendar:

And for some reason, it stuck. I started exercising every night after dinner, doing YouTube videos in my room on my beat up violet yoga mat. After school, instead of snacking, I would ride the exercise bike my father had bought at Kmart some months before. I went from biking one mile to two to eventually fifteen miles every day, all the while documenting my completed exercise routines in various fitness journals and calendar printouts, such as these:

calendars

I can also attribute a lot of my weight loss journey to the girls over at Tone It Up. I discovered them through Lauren Conrad’s Bikini Boot Camp (one of the programs I attempted to complete multiple years in a row but was never successful with) while I was in middle school, probably around 2011. I fell in love with the workouts that they posted on YouTube, and in 2014 I started following their Weekly Schedule, which they post on their website (click here to check them out!) I’ve followed them ever since. I should really write an entire post/review about them and their products, because besides their free content on their website and their YouTube, they have published a great book and put out multiple workout DVDs that I’ve used and found really helpful. Tone It Up really kept me in line with my workout routines and kept me accountable, especially when I made a TIU Instagram account. The women in the Tone It Up community are all such incredible, supportive and beautiful people and I would not have been able to accomplish what I have without their support. This, along with the inspiration that Karena and Katrina, the TIU creators, provide.

However, when I went to college in the fall, my lifestyle changed tremendously. I started going to the free gym provided for us in the student center and running around the lake on campus to keep up with my fitness. Thanks to this, I was able to swerve the freshman fifteen. The biggest challenge was finding something good to eat amidst a wide selection of all different types of food. That, and not eating ice cream with every meal just because it was there. I will write more about how to keep fit in college soon. Maybe right before school starts again in August?

Ever since I have gotten back home from school, I have gotten back to following the Tone It Up Weekly Schedule. Right now, they are doing their Bikini Series, which is an exciting 8 week program that they do every year. This is my third year following the program, and even though I had a late start due to finals week, I’ve been able to keep up on the workouts. I just haven’t been so religious with my Insta check-ins this time around… Oops!

I would like to say that I am in no way perfect. I am, however, more confident and physically fit than I ever have been before. I can run a mile in about ten minutes pretty easily. I  learned what foods are healthy to eat and how to work out regularly. I am even planning on some day soon getting my personal training certification! But most importantly, I’m happy. And one of the biggest lessons I have learned through all of this is that if something makes you happy, you have to work toward it and fight for it, no matter what.

L

P.S. If you want, you can follow my fitness Instagram account @ellietonesitup, and we can keep each other accountable!