HIIT it Like a Boss! {Gymboss Giveaway}

Every once in awhile I come up with a blog title that just makes me giggle.  Today’s one of those days.  In Friday’s post, I had briefly mentioned a new gadget that I’m loving: Gymboss Interval Timer.

timer

A few weeks ago I was asked by Gymboss to do a review / giveaway of their product.  Of course I said yes; it’s been on my wishlist for awhile now.  But before I get into the review, I want to talk a bit about HIIT workouts – no, I didn’t just misspell hit in my post title – because what good is a product review if you don’t know what to use the product for?

HIIT stands for high intensity interval training.  Briefly summed up, a HIIT workout is a short, balls to the walls workout.  You go through several cycles (intervals) of max intensity to fatigue your muscles followed with a brief low intensity break.  These workouts are highly favored for their fat burning and metabolism boosting properties.  The graphic below gives you a small idea about interval training but you should really check out the full infographic when you get a chance.

HIIT

To see the full HIIT infographic click here.

HIIT workouts are becoming more and more popular as we become busier and busier.  If you can get a 20 minute workout that reaps the same benefits as a 45 minute workout, you’d be all over it, right?  Uh, yeah.

Gymboss and kettlebells...a match made in masochistic heaven.

Gymboss and kettlebells…a match made in masochistic heaven.

Killer HIIT workout. {source}

Killer HIIT workout.
{source}

So how exactly does Gymboss fit into all of this HITT madness? Well because, my dear fitness friend, you need something to help track your effort.  Something to alert you when to start/stop both the high intensity and low intensity parts of your workout.

Sure, a basic stopwatch works for one round but you have to reset it for each high & low intensity interval.  This means that you’re having to start and stop your workout every time to fool with the dang stopwatch.  It’s really less than ideal when you think about it.  With Gymboss you just program your high intensity interval time, the low intensity time, how many reps you want to do and hit start. Voila, it does the rest.

Gymboss vibrates and alerts you with a loud beep every time you should switch from high to low (or vice versa).  And it’s really, really user friendly.  Seriously.  I hate reading instructions and I was able to figure out how to work it less than 30 seconds.

Here are some of the product features:

  • Program 1 or 2 intervals – 2 seconds to 99 minutes long
  • Intervals repeat up to 99 times
  • Beep or vibrate alarm settings
  • Compact Size (1 ¾ x 2 ¼ x ½ inches)
  • Stopwatch setting
  • Water resistant
  • Shock resistant
  • Belt clip (can be used to clip onto shirt, sports bra, wrist strap, shorts, shoes, etc.)

I’ve used this at the gym several times already and love not having to keep messing with the stopwatch on my phone.  I’m slightly a germaphobe so I love not having to touch my phone with gym hands (you know what I’m talking about) and then put the phone to my face later.   I don’t have to worry about sweating on the Gymboss or getting sand stuck in it like I do my phone.  It clips onto clothing, is roughly the size of a pager/beeper and is very light so you can’t even feel it.  And the best part of it? It comes in fabulous neon colors! Y’all know how much I love my neon colors.

gymboss

The Gymboss retails for $19.99 which is well worth it in my opinion and cheap compared to other fitness gadgets.  HOWEVER, one lucky Noshing on Asphalt reader is going to WIN a Gymboss interval timer.  Say what??  Yep, the lovely folks at Gymboss want you to win a timer so you can HIIT it like a boss, too.  There are several different ways to enter:

Mandatory Entry:  Leave a comment telling me how you would HIIT it like a boss if you won.

Additional entries (please leave a separate comment for each):

  • Follow Gymboss on Twitter.
  • Like them on Facebook.
  • Tweet about it, something like:  I want to HIIT it like a boss and win a @gymboss timer from @asphaltnosher! http://wp.me/p28bf6-Ni
  • Load a picture on Instagram of you getting after in your workout (make sure to tag both @asphaltnosher & @gymboss).

That’s 5 chances to enter! The contest closes Monday, June 17, 2013, at 12amCST and the winner will be announced Wednesday, June 19th.  Good luck!

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Sweat Like a Man….and Win a Shirt!

If you’ve ever had the pleasure of doing some sort of athletic endeavor with me, it’s no secret that I sweat like a man. But not like a stinky man. More like a dainty, feminine man. Hmmmm, not sure a sweaty feminine man is quite the visualization I was going for… Basically, I sweat a lot during workouts.

Taken: 1/29/13 Ignore my awesomely sweaty self.  That's what 7 miles of speed work does to me.

Proof I sweat like a man. I was trying to show off my baby bicep in this picture after 7 miles of speed work.

Before I really got inundated with the athletic community, I was actually a bit embarrassed to sweat in public. I mean after all, girls don’t sweat, they ‘glisten.’ Pfft. Whatever. I’m glad I got over that fear quickly. I’m actually quite proud of those little liquid drops of awesome that I produce; let’s me know I’ve done some work. {Side note…my Handana rocks the house for keeping sweat off of my face!}

Sweat is your body’s natural defense to heat. The more you sweat, the more efficiently your body is working to cool you down. If you’re not sweating, there’s most likely something wrong. (No joke.) A study conducted by the Gatorade Sports Science Institute found that the average runner will lose 2 to 4 pounds of sweat per hour while running in 85 degree heat and 40% humidity. That’s a LOT of sweat.

sweating3

Ok, I don’t sweat THAT much…. But it is a funny movie.

Since sweat basically keeps us alive in the summer (ok, slight exaggeration) shouldn’t we celebrate it? Well, the creative minds over at ViewSPORT certainly think we should. They’ve created a whole line of sweat activated athletic shirts. As you sweat it up in your workout, a secret message is revealed. The tagline for their shirts is “Motivation Revealed.”

When I received a shirt to review, I was super excited. Not only do I sweat like a man, I’m also incredibly easily amused and a sweat activated shirt is basically the entertainment equivalent of playing with your food.

shirt

The first thing I noticed about my shirt was how buttery soft it was.  It’s not a tech shirt but I didn’t have any problem running almost 9 miles in it; no chafing or irritation.  I wouldn’t recommend you take it on a 20 miler but it’s great for 10 and under.  It’s also great for gym workouts and every day wear.  I really dug the cut of the shirt, too.  I have a longer torso and this was the perfect length, not to mention it came in slightly at the waist and then relaxed over my hips. I hate wearing t-shirts that just hang all the way down.

shirt 3

Gotta love pre-run pictures where you’re still basically asleep.

I took my shirt for a test drive on my long run last Saturday and I probably drove my friend Mel crazy by asking her 27 million times ‘what does it look like?’ ‘can you see the hidden message?’ If you haven’t figured out the hidden message on my shirt appeared on the backside.

Well sure enough, by the end of the run I had managed to sweat enough to reveal “BOOM.”  I love it!  Finally, a shirt that rewards me for sweating like a man!

My spibelt sort of messed up the bottom of the O's but still, how awesome is that??

My spibelt sort of messed up the bottom of the O’s but it’s still awesome….
and gross that I sweat that much.

And the best part? ViewSPORT wants to reward one of you lucky readers for sweating like a man, too! They make both male and female shirts so for all the fellas out there, don’t be shy, this contest is for you, too.

Mandatory entry:  Leave a comment answering if you sweat like a man and are proud of it.

Additional Entries (leave a separate comment for each one you do):

  • Follow ViewSPORT on twitter
  • Tweet about the contest.  Ex. “I’m proud to get sweat like a man and want to win a @ViewSPORT shirt via @asphaltnosher. http://wp.me/p28bf6-IB”
  • Upload a picture to Instagram showing me you sweat like a man. Make sure to tag me @asphaltnosher and @viewsport.

That’s 4 chances to win an awesome shirt! Contest ends on at midnight (EST) on Wednesday, April 24th. The winner will be announced in Friday’s post.  Wish me luck, tomorrow I’m running my first Warrior Dash!!

Sparkly Soul Giveaway

Holy cow! Do y’all realize that we only have only four more days, 3 shopping days, until Christmas?! I hope you’re ready because if you’re a procrastinator it’s officially the last minute Not that I would be one of those people *cough cough* or anything. Ah, what can I say?  I’m my best under pressure.

Since this is really my last official post before Christmas, I want to do something special.  Annnnnd what’s more special than a giveaway?? Especially a sparkly giveaway?? {enter trumpet fanfare}

headbands

sparkle

Yep, that’s right! Thanks to the awesome ladies at Sparkly Soul, Inc., one of you will soon be the owner of your choice Sparkly Soul headband.  YAY! I wish I could give one to all of you, but sadly I’m still on the hunt for that money tree.  I know it’s somewhere, I just can’t find it.

The one thing you need to know about the headbands from Sparkly Soul it’s that they’re AWESOME! And I’m not just being nice because they’re letting me give one away.  I’ve gone through several different headbands and this is the first one that actually works for me.  I have a pretty tiny head, seriously, it’s child size, so I always end up having to bobby pin sports bands in place that way they don’t slide down during runs.

Looooove my green wide band!

Looooove my green wide band!

When I got my Sparkly Soul headband, I admit that I was a bit skeptical that it would stay on so I immediately tested it out.  I put it on and proceeded to thrash my head around like I was at a Metallica concert.  Eureka! They weren’t kidding about the no-slip grip!  Oh, what’s that?  You thought I’d test it by taking it for a run? How boring. There may or may not have been some air guitar involved, too… I’m so glad there’s no proof of this, uh, test.

Suffice to say, I was pretty darn pleased.  I think the secret to the stayputability is because it’s elastic all the way around, not just a portion of it. It’s also lined with super soft velvet so it doesn’t pull or get stuck in your hair like other bands.  I’ve worn it on several runs now (most recently the Pass to Bay 10k) and couldn’t be happier with it; in fact, I like it so much, I put it on my Runner’s Gift Guide.

sparkle

Me = happy
I didn’t have to mess with the band once during my 10k.

Sparkly Soul bands come in wide (5/8″) and thin (3/8″) styles in just about every sparkly color you can imagine.  They fit children from age 5 through adult which explains why I can wear them.  They aren’t just for workouts, either.  I’ve worn mine several times around town and always get compliments.

Now the fun part, how to enter the contest.

Mandatory entry:  Leave a comment with what style and color you would choose if you won. (You have to visit Sparkly Soul’s website first)

Optional entries (leave separate comments for each of the following):

  • Follow Sparkly Soul on Twitter
  • Follow me on Twitter
  • Tweet about it: ‘I want to win a @SPARKLYSOULINC band from @asphaltnosher! http://wp.me/p28bf6-w3’
  • Subscribe to my blog (you don’t want to miss anything right?)

That’s 5 chances to win!  The contest will go through next Friday, December 29th and the winner will be announced on Wednesday, January 2nd.

Want more Sparkly Soul? Make sure to follow all of their social media channels.  They’re always having awesome giveaways and posting things to keep you motivated.  On Facebook, Instagram/Pinterest/Tumblr (@SPARKLYSOULINC), on G+ (Sparkly Soul), and LinkedIn (Sparkly Soul, Inc.).

I was not compensated for this post.  I was provided with a band to giveaway to a reader.  All opinions about this product are my own.  I will never give a product a positive review unless it deserves it.

No Sugar Challenge Update & Vega Giveaway

Originally, I was going to wait until Monday to write this post but then I realized that this weekend is Veteran’s Day.  So instead of trying to cram two posts together, I figured I go ahead and do my week 1 update a few days early.  You don’t mind, right? I’m pretty sure nothing’s going to change between now and Monday.

So how has everyone been doing with the no sugar challenge? It’s definitely been a challenge for me these past few days.  Not challenging in the way that I’m tempted to ‘cheat’ but challenging instead because this is a HUGE inconvenience!  You don’t really realize how much sugar, even natural sugar, you rely on until it’s all been taken away from you.  [insert pitiful trombone noise here]

Giving up all forms of sugar means that I’ve given up most processed foods, even my ‘healthy’ processed foods.   Even my Kashi taste-like-cardboard-to-most-people cereal has evaporated cane juice in it.  So basically, if I want to eat something, I have to make it from scratch which, let’s face it, is insanely time consuming.  No wonder women from the early to mid 20th century didn’t work.  They couldn’t get out of the kitchen.  Throw in some kids and no washers or dryers and I’m exhausted just thinking about it!

On the plus side, I’m over the sugar cravings and I’ve stopped finding myself wandering aimlessly between the pantry and fridge.  The first few days I was starving and felt like I couldn’t fill up but that, too, has gone away.  It always amazes me at how much faster my body digests and uses the nutrients from whole foods vs. processed.  If I don’t eat every 2-3 hours I’m starved!

FYI – if you ever want to jump start your metabolism, make sure to eat at least 5-6 times a day; I prefer 6-7.  By only eating 3 meals a day your body goes into starvation mode and conserves calories from the food you ingest.  Feeding yourself 5-6 daily allows your body the peace of mind to go ahead and burn those calories since it knows you’ll be replacing them again.  Sorry, I digress.

I’ve also been detoxing my body with 20 oz of warm lemon water each morning.  The bitter flavor first thing in the morning took a bit of adjusting to but I’ve started to enjoy it.

So the benefits that I’ve seen so far? Really the only one I’ve noticed is that my skin has cleared up quite a bit.  I don’t know if it’s because of the no sugar / lemon water detox or because I’m not running as much as I was a few weeks ago.  Either way, I’m enjoying not looking like a teenage girl.  YAY!  The downside – it’s really, really affected my running.  That’s really the only time I physically notice the detox.

Wednesday night I hit the treadmill for the first time in months (literally, since July or August) and it. was. terrible.  I’m not sure when I started hating the treadmill so much? I guess maybe when I realized that I wouldn’t melt running in the elements.  But my night got 1,000% better with the arrival of a package from Vega.  (To read more about my thoughts on Vega, check out this review I wrote.)

Holy motherload! This is like $300 worth of product. Me = happy!

I won a photo contest back in September where I had to show them what energizes me.  Of course the photo had something to do with running… It’s actually from my first duathlon.

I’ll have to wait until the no sugar challenge is over to enjoy it but I want to share the love with you! I’m going give away a full size package of Vega’s Energizing Smoothie because I just adore y’all!

Mandatory Entry: Leave a comment below telling me what energizes you.
Additional Entries (leave a separate comment for each): 1) Subscribe to Noshing on Asphalt and tell me what e-mail you subscribed with.
2.) Follow me on Twitter
3.) Follow me on Instagram @asphaltnosher
4.) Like my Facebook page

The contest will run through Wednesday, November 14 at 11:59 cst and be selected through Random.org.  I will announce the winner on Friday, November 16.

What is True Beauty? – Forget What the Media Says

I’ve been having a great training week so far; I really think those mini-goals are keeping me focused! Last night I was able to stop by the cemetery and visit my brother which totally made my week.  I’ll have more about that on Monday’s recap.  But today I want to talk about something that’s really been bothering me.  Recently, the media has quite frankly been pissing me off.  With all of the awesomeness that the 2012 Olympics brought there are still news agencies (TV, newspaper, magazines, whatever) that have to point out flaws.  I mean these are kick butt, gold medal wearing Olympians and yet they’re still not good enough.  WTH?!? A few examples:

Gabby Douglas was reamed by the media about her hair.

Source

Melissa Franklin’s size 13 feet have been the butt of several media jokes.

Source

Australia’s triple Olympic breaststroke gold medalist Leisel Jones has been criticized for her weight.

Source

Let me mention again that these are gold medalists! The best of the best in the world and yet they’re not good enough? I get so tired of the media trying to force an ideal image on us.  How boring would life be if we were all cut from the same cloth? *YAWN*  And what really ruffles my feathers (oh yes, I did just say that) is that the media believes they actually understand beauty.  While in reality, what they are doing is perpetuating a stereotype of beauty; causing unnecessary feelings of inadequacy in the ‘average Joe’ (or Josette, in this case).  I can’t imagine how they would rip a person like me to shreds.

So what is beautiful?  For me, beauty is not something that can be judged from outside appearances alone.  True beauty comes from within and can’t be enhanced with lipstick or mascara.  It’s found in the genuineness of smile, an encouraging hug from a friend, the willingness to help a stranger in need.  It can be seen in the laugh lines that frame a face or the stretch marks and wide hips that once carried a child.  That is true beauty. Below is a picture of  a woman who exemplifies true beauty.  My grandmother.  Will she ever be on the cover of Vogue? No.  But she is one of the most beautiful people I know.  Her tired and stretched body brought 6 amazing children into this world.  Her calloused hands taught me the meaning of being a hard worker.  Her toothless smile (because, let’s face it…she only wears her dentures occasionally) lights up her face anytime I see her.  She is true beauty in motion.
So when you look in the mirror who do you see? Do you see the beautiful face staring back at you? If not, I encourage you to take a closer look. Do you see eyes accentuated with compassion? A beautifully shaped mouth that has a kind word to offer? Hair that is the perfect texture for a child to run their hands through? Ears that will listen to someone in their time of need? Starting to get the picture?
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When I start to get down on my appearance, which happens more often then I care to admit, I just look at myself through the eyes of my family and friends – especially my husband who thinks I hung the moon (well, most of the time).  They see past the media’s ideal of beauty and love me for what value I bring into their lives.  I truly believe that we all need to throw away the media’s idea of beauty; then and only then will we be able to stop worrying about what others think and embrace our full potential.  If you get nothing else out of this post, at least believe that no matter whatever your shape or size, you are beautiful!
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In honor of beautiful women, I’m having my first giveaway! The awesome girls behind Fit Approach also think every woman is beautiful and to celebrate that they sent me a pair of hot pink shoe laces so your shoes can be just as cute as you!

The rules are extremely simple:  Tell me in the comment section what your most beautiful feature is and why.  It can be physical feature or a characteristic.  For an extra entry you can tweet about it;  “I want to win #sweatpink laces from @asphaltnosher because I am beautiful!”.  Just let me know you did by leaving a separate comment.

The contest ends August 24th at midnight (EST) and the winner will be chosen at random and announced Monday August 27th.  Good luck!