Tag Archives: German Shepherd

The New Spartan Challenge + The Most Effective Squat Workout From Fitness Blender – Drop It Like A Squat!

Good morning darlings!

I apologize for not checking in with you for a few days. As I mentioned last week, I am really preoccupied with what’s been happening in Ukraine, especially with my trip there only a bit over a month away *my hubby is not excited about me having to go there without him at all*. Plus, I was not in my top physical shape, that’s for sure. Anyhow, let’s forget all about it, it’s a new week.

take what you need

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Obviously, there are many updates. Come on, don’t underestimate me!

First of all, in my quest to lower sugar intake, I decided to give up all chocolate and cookies for Lent. *There, in your face, sugar!*

I love chocolate but it makes my clothes shrink

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Our 4-month old German Shepherd puppy is a big girl now. She had her first training class… and she lost her first 2 teeth! Aweeee! *Just in case, these 2 events were NOT related! Haha! Imagine!*

Toothless Bella - German Shepherd comic

Oh, and I made poached eggs for the first time in my life! *I know, what a shame. But then, it’ better later than never, right?!* Sorry, there is no picture. I was too hungry, plus my hubby made some delicious hash potatoes. Yum!

Also, do you remember my recent post on squats? The timing was perfect. Why? Because, there is a new 30-day challenge from the Spartan Race!!! Woop woop, I looooove love love those!!! (you can see previous challenges here and here).

So this time around is… DRUM ROLL… 30 squats for 30 days!!!

30FOR30_SQUAT

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Even though the challenge started on March 5, don’t hesitate to take it on. All you have to do is to do at least 30 squats per day for 30 consecutive days. EASY PEASY!

If in doubt, here is how to perform a correct bodyweight squat:

That being said, you are not limited to a particular type of a squat. Therefore, you can change it up every day and work different muscles.

What else is important to remember is that “Many people find that they cannot perform this movement until they increase their mobility. A quick warmup and gentle stretch can help to you feel ready to attempt a bodyweight squat. The full squat requires sufficient core stability and glute activation, so be patient and focus on quality not quantity.”, according to the challenge organizers.

Feel like challenging yourself even more? Try this 100 squat workout from Fitness Blender one of these days, or maybe even to conclude the Spartan challenge. Why not?!

How was your weekend? Will you join in on the Spartan squat challenge? What are the ways you like to challenge yourself from time to time?

xoxo
Olena

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Filed under Fitness, Health, Puppy Love

HIIT Training & The New Spartan 30-Day Challenge

Happy Monday all!

Okay, fine, I’m pretty sure not everyone is super excited to go back to work after 2 weeks of holidays or short work weeks. But hey, we gotta stay POSITIVE!

I had a wonderful weekend. The definite highlight of it was a 10 km run on Sunday, my first run this year! After running, I feel re-energized, inspired and relaxed. Oh, and let’s not forget about the runner’s high! LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT! What about you?

In addition, I started using dailymile to track and share my workouts. It is a pretty awesome tool because there is a big community of active people behind it, who support each other, inspire and get inspired, not to mention that it’s absolutely free. I also love that it shows how many donuts you’ve burnt. I mean, how AWESOME is that?! If you decide to join or have already joined this community, make sure to add  me (just click on the link above or on the right panel of my blog), so that we can motivate each other!

dailymile

I was also super excited and pumped for the new Spartan Challenge: 1 Mile a Day for 30 Days. I know, it’s super easy, all you have to do is  walk/run 1 mile every day for 30 days; however, the main purpose is ‘ to get everybody off the couch and living like Spartans with small daily challenges’ or, in other words, to stay active and consistent . You can join the movement here.

1 mile a day for 30 days

On a side note, the Spartan Race has got a very talented design team. I LOVE their pictures! They are so simple and creative: I get blown away every single morning when I receive their WOD (Workout of the Day) & FOD (Food of the Day) emails.

While training for the Spartan Race, I realized the importance of HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). It takes fitness to the next level while not sacrificing any extra time at the gym. It is super easy to incorporate in your daily workout:

  • If you are going for a run, every so often start sprinting as fast as you can, then jog for a minute, then sprint again, and so forth.
  • What you could also do is run a mile then do some high-intensity exercises such as burpees, push-ups, squat jumps or mountain climbers (as many reps as you can in a minute each), then repeat: run and do exercises as many times as your fitness level allows.

It’s definitely tough, but it’s worth it! You’ll see results very quickly ,BUT you’ve got to be CONSISTENT.

Here are some of the benefits of HIIT training.

Benefits of HIIT Training

Finally, I came across the following video. It is super inspirational. I thought I’d share it with you today to start the week off on the right foot: full of energy and confidence in your abilities.

And some words of inspiration from Bella…

Dream Big and believe in yourself

Now it’s your turn. What’s your biggest fitness achievement this year so far? What is your favourite HIIT workout?

xoxo
Olena

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Filed under Fitness, Motivation

Barre Burner + Samba Dromme Super Fun Workout At Home

It was a suppppeeeer duppppeeeeer cold day in Montreal yesterday!

Montreal weather

Thank God, it was a day off and I didn’t have to go to work! I am pretty sure that you won’t judge me if I told you that I opted for a workout at home. *Don’t you dare judge me! Haha!*

Also, I saw this picture on another blog and it inspired me to do something different today, just to prove myself once and for all that I don’t need winter clothes to hide anything!

Winter benefits

I decided to go for a 10-minute Barre Burner workout to make my legs shake a bit. I guess, it’s an addiction of mine ever since my first choreography class back in my rhythmic gymnastics days. But then, who doesn’t love that feeling, right?!

I also coupled it with a Samba Dromme dance workout.

Solibeat

I bought this CD a couple of months back, because it was released by one of my favorite bloggers, Gina. In my opinion, it is worth every single penny I paid for it: it’s super fun, energetic and definitely gets your heart pumping! And the live music is just incredible! If you’d like, you can find and purchase it here.  I thought you might want to get a glimpse of it, so here is a teaser I found on Youtube.

By the way, just in case you’re wondering, the previous video was done by her too!

Anyhow, by the end of the workout, I felt absolutely great and sweaty. I decided to finish it off with a stretching session that I shared with you last month.

FUN FACT: Since our puppy is only 8 weeks old, she gets SUPER excited about EVERYTHING. As a result, I figured I’d workout in a spare room on the second floor to make sure she doesn’t run around after me and I can get a quality training session. Guess what?! The little munchkin climbed the stairs all by herself for the first time just to see me! *That’s what I call TRUE love!*

German Shepherd - 8 weeks - stairs

Please, disregard the poor quality of the picture, I had to react fast to the excited screaming of my husband! Haha!

What are your favorite dance workouts? What do you do to keep your pets away while you’re exercising?

xoxo
Olena

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Let’s Foam Roll This Year Off Right!

Happy New Year my dear friends! I wish you all much happiness, joy, success and HEALTH! Why did I put ‘health’ in capital letters? Because I find that being healthy and fit is detrimental to everything else. When we are fit, we are happy, we spread more love, which makes everyone else happy, and wouldn’t you call it success? Haha! Anyhow, you get it!

It’s been a while since I wanted to share with you a favorite toy of mine. OKAY, maybe it’s not a toy, it’s just a foam roller, but what still holds true is that I LOVE it! So I figured, what could be better than starting off this year with a nice foam rolling session?!

German Shepherd - 8 weeks

You see? Even Bella loves is! *Fine! There might have been some liver treats involved…*

There are many benefits to foam rolling, especially for runners.

Benefits of Foam Rolling

I also found this image on Pinterest to help you get started on different techniques.

Foam Roller

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What are your favorite ways to foam roll?

xoxo
Olena

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A Puppy A Day Melts My Heart Away

I’m telling you! My heart literally melted away over this weekend! I’m totally smitten and in love with our new puppy, Bella.

Bella - German Shepherd

She is truly a beauty! And if you think that this pretty face is a darling, you are mistaken! She is a little troublemaker and a daredevil!

Bella playing - German Shepherd

Bella doesn’t discriminate against anything! She’ll bite whatever comes her way: fingers, noses and ears included.

Bella sleeping - German Shepherd

Bella can be a pretty sweet lady, though; when she sleeps…

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… or when she eats!

And now after yet another running-around-the-house ‘workout’ session, we are due to sleep some more!

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Nighty night!

xoxo
Olena

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Filed under Puppy Love

Puppy Love

Do you remember last week’s December To Do list? I mentioned that I kept I couple of things secret from you. Well, I wasn’t lying! And I’m about to share big news with you!

We’re EXPECTING… a puppy! GOTCHA! In about 3 weeks from now, we will become parents to a cutie puttootti German Shepherd puppy! And her name will be… DRUM ROLL… Bella!!! How cute is that?! You see? I wasn’t lying about my love for Italian language either! Haha!

I must admit, it is a pretty big deal for me to get a puppy right now. Last January, my family dog, Sanda, passed away after living with us for close to 14 years. I was heartbroken and couldn’t even look at puppies without getting emotional and breaking down crying. I’m sure that many of you can relate to that. You’re not only losing a dog, you’re losing a friend, a family member.

German Shephed

German Shepherd

German Shepherd

Wasn’t she a beauty?!

Sanda was indeed a big part of our family. We loved her so much, and I miss her greatly. I still kind of hope that there is a doggy heaven, where she is happy playing with a ball, swimming after ducks and running after squirrels. Do you?

Without a doubt, it’s been super hard to move on, and I am not quiet sure if I ever will. But I am certain that our baby Bella will be a great addition to my own little family!

To be fair, I’m definitely not excited about the poopie part of the puppyhood! Haha! And I am nervous about training her on my own, since before it was my dad who took care of training. But I’m super excited for the new adventure and new FRIENDSHIP. Eventually, Bella will become my running buddy too! Ah… Can’t wait!

And yet, there are SO MANY things we have to take care of before meeting our puppy for the first time! Gosh, I’m getting overwhelmed to the point that I don’t even know where to start!!!!

Do you have a dog? Is it a big breed too? Please, do tell me about your training experiences and tricks that work for you!

xoxo
Olena

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