Hunger in Your Belly

I met a dancer once. The fittest person I’ve ever met in my life. Part of her job and livelihood meant staying fit and keeping in the best shape she possibly could. As a basic American girl who has long been exposed to the false narrative that beautiful boils down to skinnier…plain and simple, I wanted to know some of her secrets. And she gave me advice I’ll never forget.

She didn’t tell me what all the diet plans and fitness routines will tell you…move more, eat less. No, instead she told me she goes to bed every night with a hunger in her belly. I think about that advice a lot.

I don’t think she meant “don’t eat before bed” like a lot of fitness gurus will tell you, although it’s good advice. I don’t think she meant “stop eating after a certain time at night” or “no midnight snacks” which is also advice you’ll read about on fitness blogs and in health magazines. So maybe that’s all decent advice for staying fit or losing weight. But that’s not what she meant.

Even though she was talking about a biological need like “hunger” I think she meant something far more emotional and philosophical than the act of eating or not eating. Think about times when you have been well and truly fed. I mean full to the bottom of your heels.

Picture a Thanksgiving day…maybe it’s the evening and you’ve just had all the things at the holiday buffet. The turkey, the stuffing, the mashed potatoes, the brussels sprouts, the salad, the bread, the cranberry sauce, the pie…all of it. You know the feeling I’m coming to next…it’s not just being content. It’s being absolutely stuffed. You feel lethargic. You feel lazy. Maybe you lie around for the rest of the night in a state of light coma with the rest of your clan.

We’ve all been there. And it’s not even a bad experience on occasions like Thanksgiving. Holidays are meant to be treated with a little looser fist, giving yourself more grace and allowing yourself an extra helping of Granny’s apple pie, after all Granny may not be around to make it much longer. So eat that pie!

But still, it’s not even the physical act of being hungry that she was talking about. When you’re hungry, truly hungry, you have something to fight for. There is a primal instinct inside of us when we have a basic need like hunger that comes out. Some cave person imperative that we didn’t even know we had. And this is what she meant.

When this dancer friend told me she goes to bed with a hunger in her belly every night, she meant that she keeps that instinct alive. She doesn’t kill it off with complacency and comfort and a full Thanksgiving stomach. She doesn’t appease the dragon inside of her giving it what it wants till it goes to sleep and stops breathing fire. No, she keeps the dragon hungry so the dragon has something to fight for. Something to live for.

Dragon Fire Health and Fitness blog

I believe this is the best health advice I’ve ever gotten in my life. And there have been seasons in my life when I’ve followed this advice to the letter. I’ve never been as fit or as healthy as I was during the times when I actively went to bed with a hunger in my belly every single night. I had a poorly fed dragon in my belly and that was motivation to get out for a run every single morning. It was motivation to pursue dreams like starting my own blog or a side hustle or a web series. Those are times in my life that I can look back on and see that the hunger was there in my belly and it made me better.

I wish I could tap into that every single day for ever and ever. There are people who do a good job of going to bed with a hunger in their belly more nights than they go to bed with a well fed dragon in there. There are people who are paid to keep the hunger in their belly and that is a powerful motivator, for sure. There are people, like my dancer friend, who have taught themselves that there is no other way to live than to have the hunger in their belly.

This doesn’t mean that the people with a hunger in their belly are all skinny and perfectly fit and walking around with the flawless bodies on the planet or the most perfect lives. Not even my dancer friend is free of flaws. We are all human. And we all have to be ok with that!

But, for my dancer friend, her hunger translated into fitness and physical movement, which led to a very physically fit body. For others that can translate into health and fitness of a different kind. Healthy careers, healthy parenting, healthy relationships, healthy whatever. There are all kinds of ways the hungry dragon in your belly can motivate you and make you want to get up and fight for something bigger every single day.

Lately, my dragon has been overfed…he’s fat and he’s lazy and he sits around all day dreaming of things he’ll never actually do unless something changes.

Well, dragon…little buddy…I feel a change in the wind, says I and I think it’s time to stop feeding you so many times a day.

#InfinityGauntletFitness – Intro

It’s that time again! The fog of the holidays has finally lifted (the older I get the longer it lingers.) The weather has been turning warmer and warmer down here in Florida and it’s time to gear up for a brand new fitness series!!

Themed fitness series have been the best thing for me in regards to getting on track with my personal health and fitness. From my #AvengerinTraining series to my #PrincessBootCamp, each one has motivated me beyond just meal plans and fitness routines. These are opportunities to break bad habits, discover new things and make real, lasting lifestyle changes. Even if you only take away 1 or 2 things from each series, that builds up to a really good life. And as my friend Renita always says, #babystepstogreatness.

With Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War on the horizon, I thought I’d start with the franchise that motivates me more than any other franchise out there. Do I think I could be a superhero one day? Yes! Do I think I have some work to do before I achieve superhero status? You betcha. But I don’t like to recycle fitness plans. The thing that worked for me 4 years ago with #AvengerinTraining won’t work for me now. My life is different. My schedule is different. And my body is older. So I have to move at a pace that works for today’s me, not yesterday’s me.

But like my #AvengerinTraining series, I wanted to use Marvel as my inspo. So I came up with a series based on the Infinity Stones. Which have been peppered throughout the Marvel Cinematic Universe for years, if you’ve been watching closely. The stones are the McGuffins that Thanos himself has been seeking since The Avengers hit movie theaters in 2012. They are all powerful gemstones that are tied to all the power in the universe. Each one has a different property and purpose, but when they are all combined in the Infinity Gauntlet, they grant the user…

With that in mind, I devised a 7 week series. 1 week for each of the 6 Infinity Stones (Space, Reality, Power, Mind, Time and Soul Stones) and a 7th week for the full Infinity Gauntlet!

Stay tuned for a full week by week breakdown, starting with Week 1: The Space Stone.

But here’s a little tip if you want to dive into a new fitness series, or anything really…put your money where your dreams are! I’m starting each week by purchasing all my fitness classes up front and creating my schedule right off the bat. That way, I have no excuses. The money has been put aside, the classes have been purchased and it’s just up to me to do the things I say I want to do. So…stay tuned!!

Star Wars Book Camp: Week 2

Week 2 of Star Wars Boot Camp has begun! But before I give you a sneak peek into how Week 2 is going, let’s review Week 1, shall we!

Week 1 of Star Wars Boot Camp was all about the Dark Side, but specifically: Anakin Skywalker. Jedi Padawan and Dark Apprentice. The boy walks the line for sure! And while we find Anakin teetering between the Dark and Light for a lot of the prequel trilogy and know that ultimately his end game is redemption, I’m focusing on his Dark Side this week.

My goal for Week 1 was to work out 6 out of 7 days in the week…CHECK! As well as add on a couple extra workouts here and there…CHECK, CHECK! And as far as food goes, my goal was to normalize better eating habits such as choosing un-buttered popcorn, as a snack, over McDonald’s french fries…BIG CHECK! But because we’re dealing with the Sith in Week 1, it’s important to flirt with your temptations. So, I kept dark chocolate and red wine on my list of approved foods. That will follow me into Week 2, as I’m still firmly settled in with the Dark Side of the Force.

Another distinction about Sith Apprentice Week is that I worked only with what I had available to me. You Tube videos, free weights, runs outside and exercises that utilized my own body weight.

Here’s another look at my morning routine, which I accomplished 5 days of the week and on the 6th day, I swapped my routine out for a cleansing run around my neighborhood and some weights.

Week 1:

  • 1 min of each (3 reps)
    • Jumping Jacks
    • High Knees
    • Squats
    • Butt Kickers
    • Leg Lunges
    • Jog in Place
    • Crunches
    • High Kicks
    • Plank
    • Jump Rope

As we head into Week 2: Sith Lord Week, I have to be honest…I haven’t been as motivated and my early mornings have suffered from Snooze Button Syndrome!! But instead of getting mad at myself (something I do way too regularly) I am forgiving myself and taking the opportunity to give my body a little rest. Apparently, it needed it and when your body is screaming that it needs something and you don’t give it what it needs, eventually it will take it any way it can get it! Sometimes that manifests itself in the form of illness or injury. Which we don’t want!!

So…Monday, Day 1 of Week 2 was spent frolicking at Universal Studios with my friends Courtney and Courtney! We walked 20,000+ steps and ate delicious foods and I let myself enjoy it instead of being a stickler about my Dark Side meal plan. And while I’m happy with that decision it led to…

Tuesday, Day 2 of Week 2. I definitely slept through that alarm and while I ate really well throughout the day (WIN!) and had every intention of working out when I got home from work…I didn’t do that. I put my running shoes on, sat on my bed and then woke up an hour later. The sun was gone, the hour was late and I was groggy from an ill-timed nap. That’s not what I wanted to do. But it’s what happened. And no workout was had.

Which led to Wednesday, Day 3 of Week 2 and another alarm that I slept right on through…this trend was not boding well for my “jump back on the band wagon” state of mind. It was looking more and more like I’d fallen off the band wagon. But I will not let this morning madness deter my determination!

My goal this week is to get 5 workouts in and if I have to double up…I will.

That is the goal I’ve set. That is what will happen. And since I reached my goal in Week 1, I know that this is attainable! In fact, I’m simply building on to what I started doing in Week 1. My morning routine will remain the same with 1 min of each exercise, but instead of 3 reps, I’ll do 4.

If you want to keep up to date on my progress, come on over to my Instagram where I’m letting you in on my daily wins and also my daily losses! Basically the whole thought process through all 6 weeks of Star Wars Boot Camp are right there for you to engage with in my Insta Story!!

Here’s to clearing out the cobwebs and getting back on track!!!

Star Wars Boot Camp Redo

Star WArs boot Camp fitness series

Well, the best laid plans of mice and men…amiright?

The day I decided to start my brand new Boot Camp series was the day that we found out our friend Wally had died. After attempting to keep on keeping on despite the mounting grief washing through my soul, I finally came to the point where I couldn’t just keep on. I had to stop. Stop what I was doing. Stop and take stock of why I was doing it. And in the aftermath of tragedy, my body didn’t care about getting back into shape. The Dark Side had taken over.

I’d be lying if I said that the Darkness has left…it hasn’t.

But this past Monday, I decided to give my Star Wars Boot Camp a do-over. The desire to tune my body back to healthy has resurfaced and I feel extra motivated to make the best of my life. Especially remembering that there are people who don’t get one more day. It really does put your grief into perspective. It puts your fears and failures into perspective. And for me, it makes me stronger. It makes me want to fight for the best life I can have.

Enter…

Week 1: Sith Apprentice Week (Anakin Skywalker)

I’m altering the routine I had previously shared just a bit (pray I don’t alter it further.) šŸ˜‰

Here’s a look at my morning routine, which I will do every morning this week:

1 min of each

  • Jumping Jacks
  • High Knees
  • Squats
  • Butt Kickers
  • Leg Lunges
  • Jog in Place
  • Crunches
  • High Kicks
  • Plank
  • Jump Rope

Arm Routine

  • Dumbbell Shoulder Press (4 sets, 8 reps)
  • Standing Dumbbell Curls (3 sets, 12 reps)
  • Reverse Curls (3 sets, 12 reps)
  • Dumbbell Lateral Raises (3 sets, 12 reps)
  • Hammer Curls (2 sets, 15 reps)
  • Tricep Press (3 sets, 12 reps)
  • Upright Dumbbell Row (3 sets, 12 reps)

Here’s another look at my playlist this week:

 

Bonus Rounds

To add a little extra oomph to this week’s workouts, I’m adding some YouTube videos that will focus onĀ some Sith skills, such as lightsaber combat, Kendo and martial arts.Ā  I chose one of these 4 days out of the week to try. Take a look:

No guarantee that I’ll master these in a week…in fact, it’s a safe bet to say that I won’t. But that’s not really the point of Boot Camp. This Boot Camp is supposed to give me focus. Every morning, I’ll be narrowing in on what’s happening with my body. Where the pain is, where I need to push myself. And by focusing on those things, it will take my eyes off of the unhealthy habits I’ve been forming in the last month or so.

As of today, I’m 2 days into it and I’ve had successful morning and evening workouts each day since starting! Now it’s time to add on these extra bonus workouts and push more…just like a Sith Apprentice would. Channeling my inner Anakin!

tenor.gif

Here’s a look at some of the training Hayden Christensen did for Episode III to get you inspired!

Star Wars Boot Camp

Well, once again I’m standing at the start of a workout series. The last one was very successful. I felt good, I felt fit and then life interjected and while I haven’t completely regressed, I have not been at the level of fitness I’d like to be. The kind of level that energizes me. The kind of level that has me feeling my muscles in the good way!

So…here we go. But this time I want to invite you all into the process. Instead of showing you the results and breaking it down after 6 weeks of hard work, you are going to be my inspiration, my accountability, my reason for staying true to my 6:30am alarm each day!!!

If you want to follow along on the whole journey, come on over to my Instagram and keep an eye out for my stories each day. I’ll show you what workouts I’ll be doing and whether or not I actually do them. As well as daily inspiration to get me going and keep me going!

But I’ve gotten ahead of myself. What is this workout, you ask? I’m glad you did!! Cause it may just be my best idea yet. It’s a Star Wars Boot Camp!! That’s right…I said Star Wars!! The franchise that beats all other franchises IMHO!

You know my deep and abiding love for that galaxy far, far away. Now it’s turn that love into some fitness currency and put that love to work! Here’s a rough outline of week 1, but I’m leaving myself room to adjust each week as I need to.

I’ll be sharing my journey with you as I go and as usual, if you have any thoughts, let me know in the comments below or email me (nerdinthecity01@gmail.com)!! I’d love to hear your thoughts!!

Week 1: Anakin Skywalker (Sith Apprentice)

Week 1 is all about Anakin’s Dark Side, his fight with the ways of the Sith. I’m following the Sith Code this week:

Peace is a lie,

There is only Passion.

Through passion, I gain Strength.

Through strength, I gain Power.

Through power, I gain Victory.

Through victory, my chains are broken.

The Force shall set me free.

This week is all about Passion, Power, Strength and Victory. And since this is Sith Apprentice week, everything I do will be at home utilizing the resources I have at my disposal. You Tube videos, apps, weights, bodyweight exercises. This week is all about quantity over quality. Reps, reps, reps! Going till I can’t go anymore. Channeling my anger and my passions into strong fitness routines that will be explosive. Just like Anakin Skywalker and his decent into the Dark Side.

Here’s my playlist for Week 1:

Let’s talk food. This week I’m going to be eating lots of protein and cutting out all those foods that weigh me down: dairy, bread, bad sugars. And replacing those things with dark greens, black beans, black berries, red raspberries, black lentils, black teas, basically anything dark, black, red, bitter, etc. Things that will keep me on the path to the Dark Side.Ā 

Here is a look at my morning power workout. I’ll be doing this every morning and pairing it with workouts like Power Yoga, Boxing, Arm Workouts and Tumbling/ Acrobatics.

Morning Routine:

-1 min indoor jog

-1 min mountain climbers

-1 min jump rope

-1 min jumping jacks

-1 min skiers

-1 min front kicks

-1 min power skips

-1 min high knees

-1 min squats

-1 min butt kickersĀ 

(Repeat 3 times)

Embrace your Dark Side and together…we can rule the galaxy!!!

#PrincessBootCamp Recap

Disney Princess boot Camp recap blog post fitness Lizzie Nerd in the City happy nerd

Princess Boot Camp Disney Inspiration Fitness Plan Blog Series

So…8 weeks ago I embarked on an adventure to share with you my homemade fitness plan: Disney Princess Boot Camp. I told you at the beginningĀ that I wouldn’t be stepping foot on a scale and I haven’t…for the whole of this 8 week plan, I have listened to my body and really relied on my senses to guide me.

Foods that didn’t sit well got cut out, surprisingly that included a lot of breads and dairies. Foods that energized me will be added to my permanent shopping list, like spinach and pork cutlets and all things coconut.


Here’s a recap of each week’s theme and fitness:

Week 1: Cinderella Week

Princess Boot Camp Cinderella Week Fitness Blog series

This week I shopped the diet of a 18th century peasant, lots of staple foods, very lean cuts of meat and fruits and vegetables that might be grown in an English garden. And the fitness routine this week included: deep cleaning my parent’s garage and pool, running down stairs and ball room dancing.

Week 2: Ariel Week

Princess Boot Camp Ariel Week Disney Fitness Blog

This week’s meal plan was all about the ocean. Fish, seafood, seaweed, vegetables that might translate like cabbage and lettuce. And the only activity I did was swimming. But I utilized a variety of strokes in order to change things up. This was the week that my arms really started to feel the burn!!

Week 3: Pocahontas Week

Disney Princess Boot Camp fitness Pocahontas WEek nerd blog post

For Pocahontas Week, I faithfully followed a traditional Native American diet. Lots of foods that come from the Earth. Nuts, grains, game meats like pork, berries and vegetables that might be grown by Native Americans like Pocahontas. The activities this week included rowing, running and canoeing. And I fell in love with canoeing. I really felt like it was the kind of full body workout that was both energizing and relaxing at the same time!

Week 4: Mulan Week

Disney Princess Boot Camp Mulan Week stick fighting nerd fitness blog post

This week I paid homage to China. The foods they eat, Chinese movies and fitness that one might find in China. My shopping list included things I had never eaten before like: bitter melon, rambutan, lychee, ya pears, bok choy and napa cabbage. The fitness routines this week really kicked my ass as I tried Tai Chi and Shaolin Kung Fu!!

Week 5: Rapunzel Week

IMG_6528

This week, my shopping list had a lot of items inspired by Rapunzel and the Disney movie Tangled, more than an actual diet Rapunzel might have eaten. Whimsical things like angel hair pasta (get it!) and flax seed items (a food that promotes hair growth) as well as other proteins good for hair growth and of course, Rapunzel’s favorite, hazelnut soup! For fitness I tried rock climbing and folk dancing (line dancing…I live in the South!)

Week 6: Merida Week

Disney Princess Boot Camp Merida Week meal plan nerd blog post fitness

Merida Week was spent eating a classic Scottish diet consisting of cabbage, leeks, berries, shellfish, wild game meats and yes, even Haggis. And while Merida didn’t exhibit a love for Scottish dancing in her movie, Brave, I felt I just had to add it to my fitness plan after seeing an ad at the local community center! As well as Scottish dancing, I went horseback riding and tried archery. This week was very active and exciting!

Week 7: Elsa Week

Disney Princess Boot Camp Elsa Week nerd blog post fitness

I thought Elsa Week might prove a little harder for a Florida girl like me, seeing as how Elsa is all Frozen and stuff and in the middle of summer, a cool breeze is hard to come by in the sunshine state. But with a Scandinavian diet of foods like: root vegetables, nordic yogurt, whole grains, beans and fish and the surprising discovery of a virtual reality Winter Ski Club as well as ice skating at the RDV Sport’s Complex, I felt all those cool, frosty, Frozen vibes even in the midst of a balmy Florida summer!

Week 8: Moana Week

IMG_6567

I finished my plan strong with Moana week and a Polynesian diet of tropical fruits like pineapple and mango, chicken, pork, fish, coconut, starchy fruits and nuts. For fitness this week, I did a lot of paddle boarding and hot hula. This was one of my favorite weeks!


Because I’d given up weighing myself from day 1, I can’t actually tell you how much weight I lost. I like not weighing myself. I like listening to my body and not some number on a scale. Don’t ever forget that muscle weighs more than fat and numbers don’t tell the whole story!! I’m gonna go ahead and estimate it to around 20-25 pounds. What I can tell you is how I feel. I feel stronger. I feel happier in my own skin. I dropped 2.5 pant sizes and feel confident when I look in the mirror that what I’m seeing in myself is what I’m presenting to others.

Don’t read this and think that you need to change! Don’t read this and think that I don’t believe with all my heart that all sizes and shapes are beautiful…they are and I do believe that! But I also know that I wasn’t comfortable in my own skin anymore. The 20-30 pounds I had gained were from stress and sadness. And I couldn’t seem to get over the hump of releasing that garbage from my soul and from my body.

Leave it to Disney to inspire me to get off my ass and get fit in a really fun and magical way (it’s not like magic is their thing or anything!) But listen, this worked for me!

I’m not a doctor…don’t do what I said and think that this is medical research. But guess what…if you take the pressure off of yourself by putting your focus on something fun, eat a moderate and healthy amount of foods that are good for you and up your fitness level…you’ll probably lose a little weight or at the very least feel a little happier in your own skin. That’s all I can offer. That’s all that I did! And damn…it feels good!

Disney Princess boot Camp recap blog post fitness Lizzie Nerd in the City happy nerd

If you want to try my Disney Princess Boot Camp, let me know!! I am a great encourager and would be happy to send thoughts, memes, gifs, encouragement and inspiration your way, as well as offer the tips and tricks I used to stay motivated!! If I can feel this good…you can too!

#PrincessBootCamp – Moana Week Inspo

Disney Princess Boot Camp Moana Week inspo music movies list nerd blog post

Princess Boot Camp Moana Week Nerd Disney Fitness Blog

This week’s playlist is populated with selections from the Moana soundtrack, naturally, as well as songs about water and the ocean. It great for a lazy day at the beach or to get you pumped for Hula class or even to take paddle boarding with you!

  1. Deep Wide Ocean – The Jezabels
  2. Orinoco Flow – Enya
  3. The Ocean – Mike Perry, Shy Martin
  4. The Ocean, The Wild Wind
  5. We Move Like the Ocean – Bad Suns
  6. Walk on the Ocean – Toad the Wet Sprocket
  7. Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride – Mark Keali’i Ho’omalu
  8. Hawaiian Air – Friendly Fires
  9. Tuloa Tagaloa – Olivia Foa’i
  10. Where You Are – Christopher Jackson
  11. How Far I’ll Go – Auli’i Cravalho
  12. We Know the Way – Lin-Manuel Miranda
  13. How Far I’ll Go (Reprise) – Auli’i Cravalho
  14. I Am Moana (Song of the Ancestors) – Rachel House, Auli’i Cravalho
  15. Know Who You Are – Auli’i Cravalho
  16. We Know the Way Finale – Lin-Manuel Miranda
  17. How Far I’ll Go – Alessia Cara
  18. Only Time – Enya
  19. Caribbean Blue – Enya
  20. Dark Sky Island – Enya
  21. Brighter than the Sun – Colbie Caillat
  22. Something in the Water – Carrie Underwood

Moana

homepage_trailerthumbnail_moana_720_f3266261.jpeg

This movie was long anticipated. But I had no idea how much I would love Moana till I went and saw it in theaters…three times! Moana is the story of a young girl, the daughter of a chief. With her very birth comes the expectations of family and tradition. But Moana’s heart feels that #wanderlust and she wants to do out beyond the borders of her island life. Her meddlesome Gran is in her corner, but the call of her family is strong. And something just keeps holding her back. Until her true destiny is thrust into her hands by her Gran, who on her death bed tells her she has to follow her heart! Moana follows it past the shores of her island. She follows it to the demigod Maui. She follows it into the unknown, where she fights monsters and wrestles with her true nature. If you still haven’t seen it, what are you waiting for? It’s on Netflix…go on, I’ll wait!

Life of Pi

maxresdefault-1.jpg

Life of Pi has a lot in common with Moana. Where Moana’s story is one of discovery, Pi’s story is one of survival. But they both have familial expectations to wrestle with and come to terms with. Pi’s family is lost on a voyage across the ocean. And only him and the family’s zoo tiger, Richard Parker, survive. This movie’s visuals are stunning! Definitely worth a watch, especially during Moana Week!!

Cast Away

chucknoland.jpg

Cast Away may seem like a strange choice for Moana Week. But when you look deeper into the story of Cast Away and the way that Tom Hanks has to survive insurmountable odds, there are a lot of similarities to draw upon. Plus can’t you just see the similarities between Moana’s silly chicken Hei-Hei and Tom Hanks’ volleyball companion, Wilson!!

Journey 2: Mysterious Island

journey-2-the-mysterious-island-1920.jpg

Ok I mainly chose this one because it’s a fun little movie and has The Rock in common with Moana. There aren’t a lot of comparisons to draw between Journey 2: Mysterious Island and Moana. But Josh Hutcherson and the Rock are dreamy and there’s an island and I could go on, but I’m really just stretching here! Watch it for fun!

Waterworld

Waterworld-DI.jpg

Ok…Waterworld. I know…I know, worst movie ever made. Huge inflated budget, one of the most expensive films ever made. And what’s worse..it tanked at the box office. But have you gone back and watched Waterworld? I don’t think it’s as horrible as we all seem to think/remember. I’m not saying it deserves Oscars or anything, though it was actually nominated for one. I’m just saying, I wanted a reason to watch it and it really only seemed to fit on my Moana Watch List for Princess Boot Camp. So here it is… Waterworld. The story of a post-apocalyptic, dystopian future where the polar ice caps have melted and the world is submerged underwater, forcing the remaining citizens of Earth to survive in the perpetual ocean…the water world, if you will (yep, I did that.)

Atlantis: The Lost Empire

atlantis-the-lost-empire-facts.jpg

Who among us isn’t captured by stories of Atlantis? Have you ever dreamed of being among those who find the lost empire? I know I have! And Atlantis made me think a little of Moana. Both stories have that element of the search for something, the journey taken and the fellowships we make along the way to our destination. Did you know that Disney had plans for an underwater park based on Atlantis, but since the movie didn’t overwhelm at the box office, they cancelled it? I’m sad about that! I would love to go to an underwater theme park with an Atlantis theme!!

 

Swiss Family Robinson

swiss-family-robinson-1024.jpg

There’s a theme on this watch list and it’s survival. Which is not really what Moana is about at all. When Moana leaves her island of Motunui, it isn’t survival that is first on her mind, it is mission. But with adding ocean and island tales to my list, survival themes just seem to come naturally with that. Swiss Family Robinson is the story of a shipwrecked family…the Robinsons. Who are forced to survive on an island together. And to rebuild their lives in the face of overwhelming odds. And there are pirates.

Muppet Treasure Island

181164_full.jpg

Speaking of pirates. I added Muppet Treasure Island as a little visual and musical treat for everyone. It wouldn’t be right not to have another musical selection on the list. And this movie has lots of ocean and islands and journey through oceans to islands. Incidentally, it’s also one of my family’s favorite movies to quote. Enjoy!

#PrincessBootCamp – Moana Fitness Plan

Princess Boot Camp Moana Week Nerd Disney Fitness Blog

I am a summer girl through and through. So Moana Week is right up my alley with the beachiness, the tropical food and the love of water. Next to Pocahontas, I think Moana is the next Disney Princess that I most connect to.

Disney Princess Boot Camp Moana Week fitness blog post

The call of the unknown certainly calls to me and sometimes I feel like I don’t have the freedom to just pick up and follow that call. But also like Moana, I continue to learn over and over again that “the call isn’t out there at all, it’s inside me. It’s like the tide always rising and falling!”

In order to get fit like Moana, this week, here’s a look at the activities that will help you channel the spirit of Moana:

Surfing

1920x1080_schultz_t_0160.jpg
Picture from Patagonia.com

I wasn’t actually able to take surf lessons this week. But it’s on my master bucket list of things to do one day. And, I think, if surfing was an option on the tiny island of Motunui, Moana would really be great at it. It’s similar to our next fitness activity, but much harder. The reason I decided not to go through with a singular lesson, is because it’s an activity that needs a lot more dedicated lessons and practice to really get down. One day!

Paddle Boarding

paddleboarding-752x500.jpg
Picture from paddleboardthrills.com

Paddle Boarding is having a serious moment this summer. It’s a cousin to surfing and utilizes a lot of the same muscles groups, but is far easier. You don’t have to be as attuned to the ebb and flow of the tide for paddle boarding. In fact, I did all my paddle boarding this week in a lake. So no need for tides at all! What I love about paddle boarding is that you can do it a couple different ways. You can stand and paddle or sit down or be on your knees. You can also go on full paddle boarding adventures and take breaks during the day. I packed a little lunch, threw it onto my board and had some really amazing moments out on the water. No one else was around and it was relaxing and energizing at the same time. I went out on the water 3 times this week. This is an activity that can feel like you aren’t burning as much as you are…I was sore, to say the least! The good kind of sore!

Hula Dancing

454304977_1280x720.jpg
Picture from Vimeo.com

To finish out the activities this week, I added Hula Dancing to my list. Hot Hula to be exact. There was actually a hula class at the community center that I wanted to try out, since the community center had worked for me during other weeks. But the scheduling didn’t work out. I think I will try it some time in the future, though. And if you have a live class available to you, I encourage you to try it. I always prefer a class of other human beings over a video at home. There’s something great about doing something new with people. It helps you create new connections. But this week, it was videos for me. Specifically these on You Tube:

 

Enjoy!!

#PrincessBootCamp – Moana Meal Plan

Disney Princess Boot Camp Moana Week Meal Plan fitness blog post

Princess Boot Camp Moana Week Nerd Disney Fitness Blog

“See that line where the sky meets the sea…it calls me!”

Moana Week had to be my very favorite week of all 8 Disney Princess Boot Camp weeks. And as it rounded out the end of my fitness plan, I was able to get really energized and finish strong!

If you haven’t seen the movie Moana yet, it is recently on Netflix and is a delightful addition to the Disney Princess canon of movies! When we first meet Moana, she is just a baby, daughter of the chief and her destiny is basically laid out in front of her. Her path is set, her future decided. But Moana has a wandering spirit and she just wants to see what is beyond the shoals of her tiny island.

Moana Week
Photo by Cristina Fowler @thelittlestfowler

Her wise old grandmother is constantly telling her to seek her own future, make her own choices. But the call of duty is very strong for Moana as well. She does not want to let her family down. It isn’t until a deep sickness threatens the island of Motunui and her grandmother’s dying words encourage her to follow her heart, that Moana finally seeks her true destiny to find the demigod Maui and restore the heart of Te Fiti.

Since Moana is raised on the little Polynesian island of Motunui, this week’s menu follows a Pacific Islander’s diet. Here’s the shopping list:

-Seafood

-Chicken

-Pork

-Coconut and Coconut Milk

-Tropical Fruits (pineapple, mango, kiwi, etc.)

-Nuts (macadamia, peanuts, lichi)

-Root Veggies

-Starchy Fruits (green bananas, cassava, breadfruit, taro)

-Ginger

-Lemon and Lime

-Garlic

-Onions and Scallions

I really enjoyed this menu. So many delicious flavors, I wasn’t bored with any of my meals this week! I hope you enjoy it!