Fitness Friday: from gym to home

My absolute favorite thing to do at the gym is the stair climber. I love that machine! It burns a ton of calories and builds almost every muscle in your legs while working core muscles at the same time. I usually do it for 30 minutes. I climb around 130 flights. But, since we are living the quarantine life, I’ve had to improvise. This is what my new stair routine looks like. Not pretty but it gets the job done.


I climbed 56 flights in 30 minutes. Not quite what I get done on the stair climber but it will have to do. I put on my favorite true crime podcasts and climbed away.

I recently started using the rowing machine at the gym. It’s a great all over workout but I still prefer the stairs. I only do 15 minutes on the rowing machine. I cannot replicate this machine at home without actually buying a rower. If anyone has one that they could recommend, I would love to hear all about it. 🙂

After I do my cardio, I move to weights. I alternate the body parts I work. One day is arms/shoulders. The next day is legs/booty. Abs can be done everyday. I belong to Planet Fitness and just work my way through the machines. I spend about and hour and a half at the gym.

Now that I’m home, I’ve been using resistance bands and dumbbells. I watch You Tube videos of my favorite fitness accounts …Mr. and Mrs. Muscle and 12 Minutes to Toned are my top two. You pick an area of the body on which you want to work and there is a video for it.

I have tons of workouts and ideas on my Healthy Living Pinterest board. You can find them under Ramona Turzio. Sometimes I pick a couple and do those exercises just to switch it up a bit.

Yesterday I did arms and shoulders with a routine by Kelsey Wells from the Sweat App. You should check out her Instagram. Its fantastic. I also just discovered Kayla Itsines She is also a Sweat trainer and the creator of BBG. Where have I been living? I could have been doing these workouts for the past month I’ve been in isolation. I also absolutely love @squats, @mkfitness, and @fitstylegrace on Instagram. They offer tons of free workouts.

Everybody is different. What works for me might not work for someone else. I just found what habits and routines work for me and if I stick with it, I can maintain my weight give or take 2-3 lbs.

Do I miss going to the gym? Yes. Do I see a difference in my body since being home? Yes. I’m just trying to give myself some grace and not be too hard on myself. This too shall pass. In the meantime, check out those accounts I mentioned above. You wont be disappointed. Trust me.

Happy Exercising!

Skin Care: the two-step cleansing edit

I have learned several things about myself during this period of self-isolation and quarantine. I learned that I really enjoy taking care of my skin and trying new skin care products. My usual routine is, more often than not, a rush to cleanse and moisturize. I tend to pay more attention on the weekends when I have more time.

Since we have lots of time on our hands these days, I’ve been doing tons of reading and researching and comparing and contrasting products. I also have learned so much about anti-aging products and things I should be doing to keep my skin looking its best.

In this post, I’m only covering the importance of the two-step cleansing process and products geared towards that. Let me give you a little background … about 5 years ago, I was in Sephora and had points to use. The sales associate suggested I get the skin care sample kit from Amore Pacific, a Korean skincare company. He told me the Koreans are the best when it comes to skincare. Well, I wish I knew his name because I want to praise and thank him! This was my first foray into the two-step cleansing process and Korean skincare.

The double cleanse routine is a cleansing method used by Korean women for ages to keep their skin clear. It involves two steps … first you wash your face with an oil-based cleanser which cleans the impurities from your skin such as SPF or pollutants and the second step uses a water-based cleanser which cleans sweat and dirt.

After using the free sample kit, there was a noticeable difference in my skin’s appearance and feel. I thought my skin looked and felt younger too! I went to repurchase the full size products and was scared off by the price … just not in my skincare budget. So, I only purchased the creme cleanser and have been on the hunt for affordable products that do the same job.

That’s where I found Mamonde which is a South Korean skincare and cosmetics brand owned by Amore Pacific!

I recently purchased this…

This is for those of us who are short on time but love the results of the double cleansing method. It is an oil to foam cleanser. The oil formula transforms into a creamy foam when activated with water! You press one or two pumps onto your fingers and smooth onto dry skin in a circular motion for about 30 seconds. Apply just a small amount of water to your face, bring it to a lather and massage for another 30 seconds. Rinse and voila … you’re done! And at $21.00 I figured it was worth a try. It received great reviews

I also purchased the Mamonde Rose Water Toner. After cleansing, put a small amount on a cotton pad and gently sweep across face. It also got rave reviews on Ulta nearly all were 5 star.

Now, if you’re anything like me, you like to switch products every now and again to keep things interesting. Several people I know use the Colleen Rothschild cleansing balm but I went on the hunt for a product that did the same thing but was more affordable. I found Banila Co Clean It Zero Revitalizing Cleansing Balm. You can get it on Amazon for $18.44!

I chose the revitalizing balm because it is formulated to combat signs of aging. Alas, I am not 25 anymore. :/ I plan to use this with my Amore Pacific creme cleanser and switch off between the two products. But, Banila also makes a Clean It Zero foam cleanser for $14.00. I may give it a try when I run out of my Amore Pacific creme cleanser. So, if you are not using the double-cleansing method, trust me … you should start ASAP.

Simple But Satisfying Self-Care Solutions (Mask Edition)

I, like most of you, are practicing self quarantining and safe social distancing during these scary uncertain times. I am a preschool teacher, therefore I cannot work at all. It’s a little hard to do what I do online. Unemployment here I come. So, I am staying in and trying not to online shop my bank account away. LOL

I decided the best way for me to stay sane and afloat is to indulge in a little self-care. And, it doesn’t have to break the bank at all. I find that you can get great results from affordable products that you can purchase at the drugstore, Sephora, Ulta or, now more importantly, online at Amazon.

I know self-care looks differently for everyone. For some it is painting your nails or taking a bubble bath and for others it may be reading a book or magazine and enjoying a hot cup of tea. Below are some great ideas, most cost little or nothing, for you to try.

For me, self-care is applying a favorite face mask and watching really good reality tv. I compiled a few products that I have been enjoying lately.

These are two new face masks that came highly recommended…

Turmeric has many amazing skin benefits…has anti-inflammatory properties, fights acne, reduces dark circles, protects against sun damage & aging, reduces the appearance of stretch marks and soothes dry skin. Whoa! This mask is $45.00 for a really good size jar.

Now this one is a bit pricier at $58.00 but a little goes a long way. I love a good clay mask. I think they are my favorite. I feel like my skin looks so much more even-toned after application.

My little secret indulgence though are these individual mask packets from Yesto. Most are around $3.00. I get mine at Target but they also sell them at Walmart and just about every major drugstore chain.

My favorites are …

I always use a mask applicator when applying my masks. It makes getting an even all over application easy and quick. It’s a whole less mess and definitely less waste.

I hope you are finding this time at home alone or with loved ones as a positive experience. And if you are feeling it a bit stressful, put on a face mask, grab a book and soak in a hot bubble bath.

I would love to hear any face masks you are loving right now. I am sure I will be wearing them more than make up right now. 😉

First day of school 

Today was my first day of school.  I always buy a new dress for my first day.  As soon as I saw this beauty at Loft, I knew I had to have it.  The sleeves are so fun!!!

There aren’t too many things that I pay full price for at Loft, but this dress and the shirt I’m going to wear tomorrow were the exception.  I just couldn’t wait for a sale!!

So, have YOU started school yet?  What did you wear?

A Very Versatile Dress

Did you ever love an item of clothing so much that you tried to wear it all year long no matter the season?  If you said yes, then you’re my kinda girl.

That is exactly how I feel about this Old Navy dress I picked up last fall. I wore it a ton throughout the fall. I wore it with booties and tall boots. My accessories were neutral and muted.

Just like this …

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Fast forward to today and it finally feels like spring in NY.  I’m talking sunny and mid 50’s. While I was looking through my closet for what to wear, I came across this dress and passed by it because I thought wrong season.

But, I kept coming back to it so I thought about making it work. I had the idea to change things up by adding brightly colored accessories, wearing ballet flats and lightening up my lipstick to take this fall dress into spring.

What do you think?

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Sunday Shopping

Yesterday my daughter and I found ourselves with a free day , so, we did what we girls do best … shop  🙂

My son is graduating in a couple of weeks and I need something to wear.

We are fortunate to live near one of the greatest TJ Maxx stores in the area.  It’s a runway store so in addition to all the amazing things that regular TJ Maxx stores have, it carries high end designers as well.  We never leave empty handed.  😉

I went into the dressing room with 8 items and I seriously could have bought 7 out of the 8!  This cute little pink dress was only $29.99!  I figure with cute white wedges and some fun jewelry it would be perfect for graduation.  Then I tried on the white dress and I was torn.  It is so me and I can see myself getting tons of use out of it.  It was $49.99.  My daughter thought the pink one was more appropriate for the occasion and as much as I didn’t want to agree with her, I ended up putting the white one back?!  Truth be told, I am having non buyers remorse over it.  😦

And, just for fun, I picked up this cable & gauge tee for the summer months.

So, what do you think?  Should I go back and get the white dress?

Banana Republic scores

imageimageimageSo, while I was at the mall finally doing my Christmas returns, I wandered into Banana Republic…and boy, am I glad I did.

I found a few goodies that had been in and out of my online shopping cart several times this holiday season.  I walked away with this sequin pencil skirt, fringe top and frilly sweater.  All were on super-duper sale.  I can’t wait for an excuse to wear that skirt.

Don’t you just love After-Christmas sales?!?!

Links:

Ruffle inset top

Crepe fringe blouse

Sequin pencil skirt

 

note: The online price of the sequin skirt is WAY higher than what I paid.  I only paid $21.  It was marked down to $39.99 in the store.