NAM NATIONALS is in 13 DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!
I've been working so hard recently getting everything ready and packed, and this includes getting in shape. I'm trying to make really healthy food choices, make working out a natural part of my day, and forcing myself to get some sleep. With three tests before I leave, the last one is sometimes the hardest.
But I'd like to focus on working out because that's something I've struggled with before in getting ready for pageants. I don't work out to necessary lose weight. I do it to get in shape and feel better. Yes, it's always an extra bonus when the dress fits a little bit better or the suit hangs in a different way but working out is meant to keep your entire body healthy, body and soul. When the stress of school and my schedule get a little too much, I've recently found an escape by hopping on the treadmill and blasting some music. However, in previous years this has been a struggle as my endurance was low and I was quickly out of breath.
This year is different and for awhile, I didn't understand why I wasn't dying. Then it hit me: I bike everywhere on campus. The University of Minnesota has such a large campus and for these last couple months, my path has literally been a triangle across campus most days. There was just no way I could walk or take the bus across campus because I didn't have the time. Instead, I've been biking everywhere. To class, work, and back home. Because I bike everyday, most days totaling between 30 and 40 minutes, my stamina has increased. And that means when I get to running on the treadmill or doing a stair step climber, I can do it!
So here's to being healthy, working out, and a prayer for no snow so I can continue to bike on campus until Nationals. Which, by the way, is only 13 days out. 13! That's less than two weeks. Wow, 13 days and I'm in California. 13 days until I see palm trees. 13 days to get everything packed, forms filled out, garments altered. 13 days! (Can you guess what's on my mind?)

July 1st marks the start of a new month, but it also marks the start of my new getting-ready-for-pageant routine. I'm eating healthy, working out a LOT, and getting to bed on time. I'm not trying to lose weight, but I'm trying to tone...a lot. So what better way than to start with a 2 and 1/2 hour workout at my favorite fitness center, Lifetime fitness. Oh goodness I'm going to be dead tomorrow, but it'll be worth it.
To help me stay on track, I finally registered online with my Lifetime card and found out classes like Yoga, Pilates, Hip Hop and some types of Martial Arts are totally free to members. Guess where I'll be living until pageant? I've recently taking a liking to yoga and I'm really excited to try Pilates.
In addition, I downloaded a health app to track what I eat just so I can keep myself accountable. And of course, I perfected my workout playlist. Need to update your own? Here are just a few I added to get my list to get myself moving and to cool down.

Working Out
  • Mr. Saxobeat by Alexandra Stan
  • Wild Ones by Flo Rider
  • The One that Got Away by Katy Perry
  • Sexy and I know It by LMFAO
  • Love you like a Lovesong by Selena Gomez
  • Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO
  • Say Hey (I love you) by Michael Franti
  • Diva by Beyonce
  • Check on It by Beyonce
  • Shake It by Metro Station
  • The Time by Black Eyed Peas
  • United States of Pop by DJ Earworm
Cool Down
  • 1234 by Plain White Tees
  • Put your Record On by Corinne Bailey Rae
  • Cut Myself Some Slack by City Series
  • Clumsy by Fergie
  • Potential Breakup Song by Aly and AJ
  • Halo by Beyonce
  • 5 O' Clock by T-Pain
  • Fireflies by Owl City
  • Say Ok by Vanessa Hudgens
  • Your Love by Niki Minaj
Listening to my motivational new playlist, I did a medium intensity workout with running, stair stepping, abs, weights, biking etc. When I was good and worn out, I took a 5 minute break and then hit the hard stuff. A Hip-hop class taught by a 33 year old intense dancer. Wow. I couldn't keep up but I did my best and it was really fun.
Awkward moment of the day when a guy (props to him) joined our class and attempted to do our booty shaking, hip circling moves. Bless his heart he really did try.
Exhausted after an hour, I finally called it quits then enjoyed a well-deserved dinner of sushi and a white peach.

So here's to working out, being healthy, and shedding those extra pounds. If you're attempting the same journey, I'm right there with ya.

Remember, you can always find an excuse for anything you don't want to do and you can always find a reason for anything you do want to do. You decide...then get your butt out to run!