My Fitness Journey So Far Part 2

Last week I was meant to start the TIU Bikini Series once again but it coincided with my trip to Chester. The hotel we stayed at had a gym but once I ventured down to it on Tuesday, I never ventured down there again! It was so tiny with no dumbbells so I had to do purely cardio which I hate doing!

Starting tomorrow I am going to attempt to try the Bikini Series again; I might not be able to make it through the 8 weeks as on the final week, I start my full-time college course. Provided how I feel tomorrow, I may add in the Fit, Fierce, Fab challenges too. Over the past couple of weeks, my weight has stayed the same but I feel a lot more tired and less energised because of the amount of junk food I've been eating.

On the plus side, I basically spent Monday-Thursday weekdays on my feet walking around various locations and lost a whole load of calories due to my extra walking, less snacking and insane water intake!

I've got the next 12 days off work so I'm hoping the next fortnight that I can get as many workouts in as possible as I have nothing else to do! I'll probably try working out and watching TV at the same time (Pretty Little Liars is my current obsession, I'm starting from the beginning!) as I love how my workouts seem to fly by!

If anyone wants to join me, just send me a tweet (@sianreed93) or send me an email (sian,reed93@gmail.com); I need more TIU girls to talk to!


My Graduation

After a very long three years, last Monday I finally graduated from Hull Uni. It has been an up and down three years and I cannot tell you how relieved I am to finally get out of there. Graduation day itself was also a rollercoaster of rushing about and running from place to place to get everything ready in time.

Of course the most important thing about graduation day is the outfit! I had planned on wearing a different outfit but changed my mind at last minute. I ended up wearing a black and blue floral dress from Dorothy Perkins with my gorgeous new Shoe Zone* heels. For the first time of wearing them, they only ached after a fair few hours. The plus side is they'll also go with everything! I'm not used to wearing heels anymore so I may have been in pain in the end!

I've done posts before about uni and my experience (see my previous posts here, here and here) (I feel like an air hostess writing that!) but I've always mentioned the past and never my future.

As of September, I will be going to Sheffield College to study the NCTJ course to gain my journalism qualifications; I've thought about doing this course for nearly two years now but until a few months ago I thought I would have to travel to Manchester. I also thought about leaving university to do the course but then decided to stick with uni to not waste money/time. However, I had my interview for my Sheffield course way back in January and I think ever since then, my mind has been focused on it. I'm so excited to start the next chapter of my life and actually want September to hurry up and get here!

(Disclaimer: *Shoe Zone sent me these shoes to review for free but the reviews are all my own opinion.)


My Fitness Journey So Far

This week didn't go to plan at all and I only managed to workout on Thursday. Graduation could've classed as a workout as I had to walk in heels all day long!

Starting Monday, I'll be re-doing the 8-week Bikini Series even though I'll be away Monday-Thursday. The hotel we're staying in has a small gym so I shall be taking my sports bras, sneakers and shorts to motivate myself! Hopefully I will try and squeeze in the current weekly schedule workouts too when I can do.

The main reason I love Tone It Up is the amazing online community; I also have met some amazing girls on Instagram too and we are always encouraging each other with our daily workouts. For all you who want to try the programme, I would because it's free. I don't bother paying the money to buy the nutritional program, I literally just use the free online workout schedules. If there isn't enough exercise in them for you, you can always add additional videos and workouts.

I'm pleased that I seem to at least maintaining my weight rather than gaining it even though initially I was losing about a pound a week. Hopefully this week, I will be doing lots of walking around and less snacking! I also like to take my basic measurements and weight first thing on a Monday when I wake up.

If you want to follow my journey, follow me on Instagram where I try to post daily (see the sidebar) or drop me an email if you want to join me in the Bikini Series; I could do with a fellow TIU buddy to keep me on track!


My Fitness Journey: #FitFierceFab Week 4

So the final week begins. After last week's less than pleasing measurements, I'm determined to give this week everything I have because it's the last week!

Day 22 (Monday):

Not overly impressed by this week's measurements but just means I'll push harder this week!
8.10: Be Fit Challenge: Take and record measurements
9.10-9.30: Morning Booty Call from book: Dance it out (I chose to do my DCC Calorie Blasting Dance DVD. As I already know the dance, I now do the warm-up, the completed dance section, the cool down and the added bonus section of dancing it in full cheerleader speed!)
9.35-10.00: Morning Booty Call from online: 25 minutes of cardio (I chose to do my DCC Hard Body Boot Camp DVD and did the high-impact full body routine which is an absolute killer!)
1.00-3.00: Be Fierce Challenge: Have a dance party! (I spent these two hours cleaning the spare bedroom/de-cluttering and found myself having a dance and sing to my Girl Power playlist- it's basically just Britney, Rihanna, Demi and Selena!)

Day 23 (Tuesday):

1. Before my MBC. 2. After I twisted my knee :(

8.25-8.40: Morning Booty Call: Amazing Arms and Abs routine once through
4.40-4.50: Bikini Arms video from online schedule done once

After this, I twisted my knee (I slipped on the patio after it had been raining, what a doughnut!) and haven't been able to exercise since! I'm pretty gutted to be ending my Fit, Fierce, Fab journey in this fashion because I was going on track. I'd been happy with my progress in terms of measurements and exercise regime; I'm hoping the past few days off haven't completely derailed everything!

Next up for me, I'm going to start the 8-week Bikini Series all over again starting on Tuesday as I have my graduation tomorrow and doubt I'll have any time to exercise! Here is the link to Week 1; I might be able to do some toning tomorrow but I doubt it will be much! I may try and incorporate the current weekly schedule in if I have spare time too. I'm determined that over the next 9 weeks (I'm taking a week off when I go on holiday) I can get physically and mentally fit and confident too!

Here's how my next 9 weeks look:

  • 13th July-19th July: Week 1 Bikini Series
  • 20th July-26th July: Week off, I'm away Monday-Thursday and working Friday-Sunday. I'll try to incorporate either the current weekly schedule or some workout DVDs in.
  • 27th July-2nd August: Week 2 Bikini Series
  • 3rd August-9th August: Week 3 Bikini Series; Days 1-7 of Fit, Fierce, Fab; Days 1-7 of a few 30-day challenges
  • 10th August-16th August: Week 4 Bikini Series; Days 8-14 of Fit, Fierce, Fab; Days 8-14 of a few 30-day challenges
  • 17th August-23rd August: Week 5 Bikini Series; Days 15-21 of Fit, Fierce, Fab; Days 15-21 of a few 30-day challenges
  • 24th August-30th August: Week 6 Bikini Series; Days 22-28 of Fit, Fierce, Fab; Days 22-28 of a few 30-day challenges
  • 31st August-6th September: Week 7 Bikini Series; Days 29-30 of a few 30-day challenges; Days 1-7 of my 14-day emergency shred (Women's Health)
  • 7th September-13th September: Week 8 Bikini Series; Days 8-14 of my 14-day emergency shred (Women's Health)
I'm realllly hoping I can stick to this; I'm not working a huge amount over the next 9 weeks so I think I've got the time to stick to this plan. I know it seems like a lot of exercise but the 30-day challenges won't take very long and I tend to operate better with a structured plan! I'm very excited to start the Fit, Fierce, Fab journey again as well as the Bikini Series. 


My Fitness Journey: #FitFierceFab Week 3

I was meant to post this last night but I had a brain lapse and totally forgot! This week wasn't as successful as other but nevertheless I still managed to get in most of my workouts!

Day 15 (Monday):

Today's #ootd.
8.25-8.40: Morning Booty Call from book: Amazing Arms and Abs routine twice
11.00-11.30: Daily Fitness Challenge: Bombshell Bonanza routine three times
3.25-4.00: Love Your Booty workout done twice through
All Day: Be Fierce Challenge: Live in the moment!

Day 16 (Tuesday):

1. Pre-sunbathing (I got bored after 30 minutes! 2. Before going to Zumba with my mum.
8.00-8.10: Morning Booty Call from book: Booty Shorts routine twice
8.50-8.55: The Best Ab Routine done one through
6.20-6.30: Walk to village hall
6.30-7.30: Zumba class
7.30-7.40: Walk home from village hall

Day 17 (Wednesday):

Watching the rugby with my dad.
I spent the day at work and didn't get home until about 7 and rugby started at 8 so it was just great to chill out for the evening!
All day: Be Fierce Challenge: Don't react with everyone/everything (which is very hard with some of our customers at my work!)

Day 18 (Thursday):

1. Getting back on track after yesterday's rest day. 2. Trying out Sleek Technique!
2.25-2.45: DCC Calorie Blasting Dance DVD
3.30-3.50: Monday's Be Fierce Challenge: Shake up your routine today: Sleek Technique DVD: Ballet Bootcamp 1
5.00-5.10: Daily Fitness Challenge: Bombshell Bonanze routine done once

Day 19 (Friday):

I like hair accessories, thanks to Blair Waldorf.
2.45-4.45: Daily Fitness Challenge: Cardio: Fly Me To The Moon (I had a massive ceebs today but I did spend the afternoon walking around shops)

Day 20 (Saturday):

Super early morning workout for me today before heading to work.
6.20-6.30: Morning Booty Call: Booty Shorts routine twice through
6.15-6.30: 3 Minute Thighs routine from Monday done through twice
All day at work: Be Fabulous Challenge: Confidence is key: I may have flirted with a couple of customers today ;-)
6.35-6.45: Itty Bitty Abs routine from Friday

Day 21 (Sunday):

Another early workout before getting ready to head to work.
6.55-7.05: Bikini Arms routine from Friday
7.05-7.15: Morning Booty Call: HIIT & Run from Tuesday
2.30-3.00: 30 minute walk around the shops after work

It hasn't been my best week as I weighed myself this morning (Monday) and have put 1lb back on but with next week being the final week, I will give my journey one last huge push! See you all next week! :)


Striving for Perfection

Disclaimer: This is a personal post.

Yesterday, I got my final results from university. I got a 2:1. For many people this is great news. For me, I was very disappointed in myself. Last years' dismal results didn't help so I had to work my arse off this year just to get a 2:1. However, I'm still annoyed with myself. You see, I'm one of those people who wants to be the best at everything I do. I'm not saying I want to be first place in everything but I want to achieve the most that I can in my life. I know my own strengths and how much effort I have to give in certain aspects of my life.

Education has always been a strong point for me. I finished school with 16 and a half GCSE's all A*-C and I worked incredibly hard for those grades after no help from most of my teachers whatsoever; during this time I had to balance studying with dance classes pretty much every weeknight. I've always been lucky that I'm pretty academic and I actually enjoy learning about new things, I don't think that will ever change, but I have a need to be the best. So when I got my results yesterday, I was satisfied but not happy. The main problem is my university journey didn't go quite to plan (I wrote a post on this last year) and seeing my grade today just established that I should never have gone to university in the first place.

I know for many professions you need a degree but I'm starting college in September to study journalism, something that I'm really passionate about and will put all of my energy into it. For this course I'll be getting a train every day at 6am every weekday to travel to Sheffield from September until March so I'd say that's some pretty hardcore dedication already. Also, I passed the entrance exam straight away and the lecturers are so much more attentive that they are at my university. I think because of my focus on this, I put less energy into my university work. It doesn't mean I didn't try, because I did, but I just felt that no matter how hard I tried, the grades didn't seem to match the effort. That's why I hate those people who never or barely study and get top grades.

I would say my university experience has been less than great. Living at home and not drinking alcohol at all has probably hindered my experience but I don't really care about that. I've made a couple of great friends on my course and joined a society in which I love every single member and am so grateful for these. However, the academic side was sub par. The course was poorly organised, lecturers were a nightmare to get a hold of and when you did get in contact with them, they rarely gave you any help or advice. Because of this, my attendance was poor; I didn't feel valued as a student of my subject. Instead of attending lectures, I would read the relevant chapters and look online at articles on the subject too so I was doing more productive work rather than listening to a lecturer ramble on for two hours of my life.

I'm someone who's very proud of everything they've accomplished but there is always room for improvement. As of September, I am solely focused on passing my journalism course with flying colours and starting a new chapter in my life, one of which I should have started instead of going to uni. I'm one of the most ambitious people I know; I want to be successful and make a difference in a career that I love. And sometimes I've been made to feel bad for being ambitious. Is it so wrong to put my career before everything in my life? Having a good career that I'm happy with will allow me to be able to afford to get married, start a family and own a great home. As girls, I feel like we're not allowed to dream big or be ambitious in fear of being laughed at. I'm not someone who is going to settle for anything less than perfect in any aspect of my life. I'm very independent too so I think that allows me to go after what I want.

At the end of the day, I'm graduating from uni with a fairly decent grade and I've managed to balance studying with a part-time job since I was 16. I'm going to continue to grow and evolve as a human being and continue on with the next chapter in my life.


Top 5 Car Essentials

I've been driving just over a year now and have had my own car for nearly a year. For quite a while, I had nothing in my car other than my glasses and a couple of cloths. Then I put together my own car kit of all those essentials that you often need but don't want to carry them around in your bag everyday.

Small purse of coins- I don't know about you but I pay for almost everything on debit card apart from car parking! It costs me £2.40 a day to park in the city centre so my small purse is full of £1 coins and 20ps. Every time I'm out and about and break into a note, if I have any £1s and 20ps, I make sure I transfer them when I get home.

Umbrella- In the trusty British weather, especially in summer, we can never rely on the sun. One minute, it's roasting and the next, it's pouring down. I keep a £1 from Poundland in the boot of my car so just in case I leave it somewhere, it doesn't really matter! It's plain and black but it does the job of keeping me dry!

Foldaway shopper bag- Being a blogger and a girl, I love shopping but I get frustrated when I have a few carrier bags to carry. If I know I'll be buying a few items, I'll transfer the shopper bag from my car to my handbag so I just have one large bag to carry rather than several.

A change of shoes- Not all of the time, but often I keep a pair of Keds in the boot because they are so comfy! I have to work in pumps and sometimes my feet kill afterwards that I change them for my Keds before I set off home!

Toiletry bag- I'm not one of those girls who carries around a huge toiletry bag in my handbag because it just weighs you down and you don't even end up using half of the things in it! In my car, I keep a small bottle of perfume, deodorant and spray, a hairbrush and comb, ibuprofen tablets, tissues, Vaseline and antibacterial handwash. (You know the ones that don't require soap?) 

(All images from Google images)