A 5'3 Perspective

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Fabulous Finds Friday

With only a few hours until the weekend I thought it might be fun to share a few of my favourite products and things with you. If this entry is hit then I may make Fabulous Finds Friday a recurring event!

Without further ado, here are five of my most fabulous finds as of late:

1. Philosophy Sweet Talk Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath

This body wash smells amazing! It is sweet without being sickening and still leaves you feeling fresh and clean. Your bathroom and shower [and body] will smell like pure bliss after using it! Oh and did I mention you can use it as shampoo?

2. Trek 1.5 Women’s Road Bike

I know I don’t write much about biking on my blog, but it is something I do almost every day. I bike to and from work – rain or shine – and this baby lets me make the 6.5km trek in record time. If you can afford a road bike [new or used] you should really consider getting one. It is the best investment I’ve made for my wallet, the environment, and my health. A morning bike ride starts every day off right [even if you show up at work drenched from the rain]. I love pushing myself to pass other cyclists on the path and the burn in my legs when I get home from work is one of the best feelings.

3. NARS Illuminator

I received this product in a beauty bonus package from Sephora – just a little tester sized tube – and I wasn’t really convinced I would use it. Until a few months ago I had never used an illuminator in my beauty routine, I didn’t really see the point [clearly I didn’t know how to use it]. After doing some research I found out that a few strategically placed dots of illuminator can completely transform your face. Use it sparingly because you don’t want to have a shiny face, but make sure to highlight your upper cheek bones, your temples and your brow bone. These spots will give you the most bang for your buck and you’ll walk around with a natural glow all day.

4. Panda All Natural Soft Licorice

As a kid I hated black licorice – probably more than anything else. I don’t know what prompted me to try it again, or to choose this brand but boy am I thankful I did. With only four all natural ingredients, they are fairly allergen free and healthy [as long as you don’t eat the whole box in one sitting – not that I have done that before…]. They are chewy and just sweet enough to satisfy your sugary cravings. If you don’t like black licorice there are many other flavours to choose from but I highly recommend giving these a try, you might change your mind like I did!

5. Girls on HBO

I swear this isn’t just another show about a group of rich girls doing fabulous things in New York. This show is funny and easy to relate to. The first episode is a little strange but by the end of episode two you will be hooked. Trust me!

Anyways, that’s all for today, I hope you guys enjoy checking out a few of my favourite things!


Workout Inspiration

Just a few days ago my city was filled with over 40,000 runners, joggers, and walkers – all participating in the Ottawa Race Weekend. With a wide range of race lengths, there really is something for everyone, from a kids 2km race to a full marathon.

Many of my friends participated in the events but something about running with such a large number of people makes me anxious – so I chose to cheer from the sidelines. The energy in the city is incredible during the event and I quickly became disappointed in myself that I let my nerves get the best of me.

On Sunday evening, I was feeling beyond inspired and set out to run a 5km route – which turned into a 10km in a personal best time of 55:38. This was only my second run of that length ever – needless to say I was kicking myself for not entering the Ottawa Race Weekend event.

But, let me give you a bit of background. My father is a runner, has been for more than half of his life. He just finished his 8th marathon this weekend – and his first marathon at age 60 [sorry for outing you dad!] placing 10th in his age category and qualifying once again for the Boston Marathon. Now I know he is my dad which makes me a little biased but you must admit – it is pretty amazing. He has always been my inspiration to run, but running does not come easy to me. One day I will run a half marathon – mark my words – I just don’t know when yet.

Over the past few years I have run distances of 5km fairly consistently but it isn’t often that I push the envelope much farther. I had not been progressing much in my training, and to be honest, I had pretty much given up on running. As many of you know I have recently turned to weight lifting and HIIT for my workouts. I cannot stress how much this type of exercise has helped me. I am in the best shape of my life, I am stronger than ever and I feel great. But what really impressed me was that I could go out, with no “training” and run 10km in quite a respectable time. This just goes to show that my new workout routines are really paying off. So I’d like to share a few ideas with you, in case you were thinking of switching things up at the gym.

My Workouts

I lift weights and do cardio 4 times a week, usually on the same days [that way I get 3 active rest days each week]. My schedule looks something like this:

Monday – TABATA cardio session and upper body weights (routine A).

Tuesday – HIIT run and lower body weights (routine A).

Wednesday – Active rest day [I usually bike to and from work every day and go for walks at night].

Thursday – TABATA cardio session and upper body weights (routine B).

Friday – HIIT run and lower body weights (routine B).

Saturday and Sunday are active rest days.

Sounds easy right? It is. I follow a workout from bodybuiling.com which can be found here. I do not emulate it completely because I try to do what feels best for my body, but at the beginning it is great framework. Make sure you lift heavy weights to see the best results – and NO, you will not look like a body builder just from following this plan so don’t bother worrying about “bulking”. For my TABATA workouts I do 20 seconds of work 10 seconds of rest for a total of 20 minutes. I know it doesn’t sound like much but I dare you to try it.

My go to TABATA work out. Cycle through 1 – 10 four times to complete a 20 minute session.

My advice, start slow and listen to your body. If you miss a day, don’t worry about it, make it up the next day. Once you find a routine that works for you you’ll catch your stride. I am by no means a personal trainer so take my advice with a grain of salt – but I hope you enjoy it!