Thursday, April 30, 2015

Duo Brush On Adhesive

For someone who has worn faux eyelashes 3 times in her life, I sure have a lot of pairs taking up space in my drawer. From semi-casual to outrageous. I've decided to invest in a tube of lash glue, because the pairs that I own didn't come with any.
Quick scan of the choices at Sephora and I chose the predictable Duo. I think the price was right $12 CAD (I really have no gauge on what's an acceptable price for lash glue); and I liked that it's a brush applicator and not a squeeze tube.
Upon opening it had no discernible scent and it was easy to use... I managed to navigate my lashes into place... and they stayed on all day.

Duo... a solid product that delivered... I'm happy with my choice :)

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Holt Renfrew Spring Beauty Bag

Spring is here and another edition of Holt Renfrew's spring beauty bag in on. I see it and I can't pass it up. It's $35 for a cute bag and some minis to play with.
 Inside the pretty white lipstick bag a smaller pretty mint green bag... I'm confused, but the bags feel well made and will house my vacation beauty essentials on my next get away.
 Now for the minis... let me give you the rundown of all the bits.
Kiehl's -  Powerful-Strength Line Reducing Concentrate and Midnight Recovery Concentrate - very curious about the first but really excited about the second (so many people love it... hope to join the club)

Dior Lipgloss in Bonheur and Lipstick in Rouge 999 with a mini lip brush - looking forward to this. The little red envelope is magnetic, nice touch, but doesn't feel very durable.

Tom Ford Velvet Orchid - Too Tom for my blood. I don't like it, much less love it.

Deborah Lippmann in Modern Love - I can't resist a bottle of polish :)

Erno Laszlo White Marble Treatment Bar - it came with instructions on how to use it... yup... instructions on how to use a bar of soap... seems I've been doing it wrong for years...

Molton Brown Orange & Bergamot Body Wash - smells delicious.

Clinique Superprimer Universal Face Primer - looking forward to playing with this... it would be nice if it was "super" :)

YSL BabyDoll Mascara - a mascara mini is always welcome.

Lastly there was a $10 coupon included as well... already spent :) Walked out of HR with the beauty bag and a treat I applied the coupon towards :)

This little beauty bag is not the best in terms of samples compared to ones released in by past by HR, but I'm liking... liking it a lot... mostly for the nail polish and the bags themselves, so pretty, so girly, so spring :)

Sunday, April 26, 2015

BBG - Pre-Training Week 1

Monday - Legs & Cardio
Here is the drill. Kyla provides two quick sets with 4 exercises in each. You go through the first set as many times as you can in 7 minutes. Then you rest for 30 to 90 seconds (I chose 60), then you go thorough the second set as many times as you can in 7 minutes… break for 30 to 90 (60 in my case) and repeat set 1 and set 2.

But omg… did I ever work. Moves look simple and straightforward on paper (or laptop) in my case. But I was sweating, and I mean dripping sweating… beads of moisture rolling of my whole body… and at one point, I didn’t think I’d make it to the end.

One of the moves required a jumping rope. I have one, but no room in my living space to swing it. So I jumped a pretend jumping rope. Still got my heart rate up, and did not have to stop to untangle the rope from between my feet (I’m not really good are rope jumping).

So 4 sets of 7min and 3 breaks of 1 min... all in all 31 minutes and I’m done. Sounds easy enough.

Tuesday: LISS (low intensity steady state)
Kyla explains that this can be basically a brisk 35-45 minute walk at 6-6.6kmph (3.7-3.9mph). I really don’t know how fast that is (it’s probably my jogging speed :)). But I walked home from work as fast as I could… hope that counts.

By the way my bum and legs are feeling Monday’s workout.

Wednesday: Arms and Abs.
I could barely roll out of bed this morning for Tracy. Upper thighs are feeling the Monday workout burn double today. I thought I was in better shape than this :).

Arms and abs rocked. My upper body needs some serious strengthening. Need to learn to love push-ups :)

Thursday: LISS (low intensity steady state)
Same as Tuesday, walked home from work. Didn't have the burn in arms that I did in legs the next day... but I did have telltale ache... Did I work hard enough? :)
Friday : Full Body (optional)
So seeing "optional" had me a bit tempted to skip it... because it seems that just as with legs the real impact of my workout doesn't make itself apparent the day after but two days after. Sweet burn in arms and abs on Friday from Wednesday's routine.

But I re-grouped and went for it; and "full body" is just that... 8 moves targeting everything. I took it easy with squats because I had strange tightness in the back of upper right tight (just below the bum) and powered through everything else..... and pre-training week one is done.

Saturday Kayla recommends stretching and rehabilitation... ummmm so you know for me that just meant an extra hour of rolling around in bed :)

Friday, April 24, 2015

BBG - Bikini Body Guide by Kayla Itsines

So on day 31 of my second time around with Tracy Anderson Metamorphosis I decided to change it up, and start up a new routine. This is because of Instagram. Radom browsing led me to Kayla Itsines and more “before and after” shots than I could scroll through. So after some further online research. I pulled out my visa and forked over hard earned cash for a digital guide to my bikini body.

The program is 12 weeks, but this guide also contains 4 weeks of pre-training if you’re new to fitness or Kayla’s method. (She also has a free week on her site, for those who want to try before paying). I decided to start with the initial 4 weeks before moving on to the program (getting my money’s worth out of every single page)

Things that sold me on this program:
- It’s digital, easy to take with on a device or in print form
- I can do it in the comfort of my own home (major selling point for me, as I can’t stand gyms).
- Created by a woman for women… no one knows our bodies better.
- Before and after shots are killer motivation.
- It only requires an approximate 30 min commitment from me (Mon - Fri)… stretch on Sat.

So just like with Tracy’s method I decided to document my Kayla progress. However unlike my Tracy experience, I won’t do it at the end after I’ve completed the program, I’ll share my progress as I’m going trough it, starting with the 4 weeks of pre-training.

I started on Monday April 20th, and after I complete each week I’ll post a writeup about my experience… you may find it informative, you may find it not… but I’m committing my journey to the world wide web… and if things work out, maybe at the end of it all you’ll get a shot of my before and after :) Which should be Aug 3rd if I stick with it.

So here’s my plan. Tracy in the morning before work, Kyla in the evening after work… killer bikini body unavoidable hahahahaha

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar / Matte in Lydia

This is my second lip tar purchase. First one being Memento.  I have to say that I've looked at this in Sephora before. Never swatched it because it seemed too dark and purple in the tube.

But one day watching a makeup tutorial the youtuber puts this on her lips as a finishing touch... and I suddenly needed, needed, needed to have this. It took a couple of months of stalking Sephora website before I got it, as majority of OCC products were sold out for the longest time. They are once again sold out of most of the shades .... spring sale :)
This is a matte opaque shade, described as "darkroom plum" online.
And it is pretty. I didn't think of myself as a plum lover... but here I am proved wrong. Wore this a few times, with a touch of gloss on top; because I haven't caught up with the matte trend yet :)

Monday, April 20, 2015

B. Balenciaga - perfum thoughts

I ordered this perfume out of curiosity. It was all over the internet and beauty/fashion magazines at the end of 2014 and into 2015. The scent described as "green and woody" with lily of the valley and edamame just had such delicious temptation for me. 

At first I could not find it in any Toronto stores, and instead of being patient and waiting until it was... I justified a rollerball purchase. Because based on all the scent descriptions and reviews I read I was convinced that I was going to love it... and it was going to become my "it" scent.

Well it arrived and I don't and it isn't. I don't hate it, but I don't have any love for it either. I will use it up on vacations and odd weekends, but it's not something I think to reach for when I want to apply some scent. 

I would describe this fragrance as "bright", "fresh", and yes "green"... I don't know why I don't love it... something about it just doesn't do it for me... It's beautiful and the packaging (for the full sized version) is stunning... I understand why it has mass appeal, but I'm not part of the group.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Metamorphosis by Tracy - Abcentric - Day 81 to 90

I can't believe I made it. Dance cardio is second nature (even if I still can't follow a couple of moves)... dancer I am not. But with my music in my ears, sometimes my mind starts to wander and before I know it 30 min is up.

At the beginning of toning sequence Tracy congratulates you on making this far and warns that you're about to be challenged. Arms and abs I found comparable to previous weeks. But the leg sequence left my butt and thighs trembling... felt that sweet "I just toned my muscles" pain a day after as well. I could do all the leg moves, I just couldn't do the same amount of reps as Tracy before my weak thighs gave out :)

Tracy finishes the toning part with a few quick arm reps. I didn't get it, I prefer the two arm stretch moves she usually ends with :) I don't get it, but I also don't switch it up... after all she's the fit expert and I want to be fit :)

So what's my body like at the end of this program?

Better than I started with, but not quite where I'd like it to be. Calves and arms are pretty solid, everything in between is a work in progress.

I'm going to re-start this 90 day sequence once again, and hoping to complete it in a reasonable amount of time :) So by the time you're reading this I'll be way into round 2. Then I'll consider moving on and ordering  Metamorphosis continuity program.

The style of this program is definitely not for everyone (just google some other reviews), but I found my groove and for now I'm sticking with it.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Metamorphosis by Tracy - Abcentric - Day 71 to 80

So after day 73 I went to Cuba for a week. Came back, and could not bring myself to let go of the lazy vacation mode. Took me 4 days (12 with vacation), to press play again.

I felt it. I felt it during the cardio, and I definitely felt it during the toning.

Tracy changes it up a bit. There is something like warm-up/ stretching prior to the arm sequence :) Then the whole arm portion is done kneeling. Back to standing for "standing abs"... I will never get this. On your back for more abs, and back to knees for legs.

The arm sequence felt a bit easier and faster than usual. That's because there is a bit of arm work involved once we shift to leg toning (push-ups regardless of type, are not my strength).

As well, when you start the leg sequence Tracy explains each move, except for the last one (which has 3 modification... so maybe no notice of transition or explanation for the last 3 moves). I wasn't aware until I fatigued from a move and glanced at the screen, to see how she's holding up... and there was Tracy on her back, doing something completely different. It's the little things.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

and here we go....

I seriously thought it would be at least August  before I reached this milestone... but no, I have greatly underestimated my Sephora problem :) Spring sale has come, and after 2 online orders and one in-store visit I'm there...

It's a very pretty Marc Jacobs shade... I promised myself to wear it... and limit my Sephora purchases to needs only... until November... here is to lack of will :)

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Sephora Sale - time to shop :)

I tried to register an hour after I received this email... all 3 Sephora's that are within reasonable travelling distance for me were already filled up. So no "closed-door" shopping for me; that's alright, I took my time to finesse my shopping list and placed my order online.... now let's hope it won't take a month to get here :)

Friday, April 10, 2015

Metamorphosis by Tracy - Abcentric - Day 61 to 70

Let me tell you listening to your own music is key. I’ve gotten good at the dance cardio (Lucy good, meaning I would never do this in public). But I would not be able to motivate myself to do it if I had to listen to the same Tracy music day in and day out. With my playlist and the fact that my body knows the moves (most of the time) time flies by.

Love the arm, ab, and leg sequence in this 10 day segment. I struggle with a  couple of exercises, but I’m not discouraged.

I must point out that I got sick during this stretch, and took a week off. When I got back to my routine after an 8 day break, my body sure felt it… and muscles had a good fitness ache for a couple of days.

During the toning section, Tracy mentions that I should be "pretty good" at these exercises at this point and be seeing incredible results. For the first one, I'm a superstar now, compared to my 1st day (but only in the privacy of my own home, with the cat as my only witness). For the 2nd... well... here is the thing. Maybe if I stuck to her diet and pressed play 6 days a week I would be seeing better results. But I didn't and so I don't. I feel nice definition in my arms and my calves... but my bum still has a way to climb before I can classify it as semi-perky and my "toned" abs, are just an idea right now... currently I still have just the one jelly ab.

Still for all my negativity,  I'm liking my 5am Tracy Anderson routine... and I think once I actually finish the 90 day program, I'll re-start it again before I commit to the continuity program.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Metamorphosis by Tracy - Abcentric - Day 51 to 60

I’m always a bit excited and I bit nervous to start a new toning routine. I give Tracy props for changing it up every 10 days. It keeps me motivated, interested, and most importantly challenged.

I’m excited to see and try new moves. I’m nervous that I won’t be able to execute them, and that I won’t be able to follow and keep in sync with her, especially during the arms and abs sequence.

I didn’t do as bad as I expected on my first day. I guess 50 days of Tracy, got me in a bit of Tracy groove. I get better over the next 9.
I continue to fail during the standing ab moves, and feel relieved when we move down to the floor.

Leg and bum moves while explained by Tracy, are challenging; for me particularly anything that involves balancing at the same time is that much harder. But also because several moves are only 10 reps, so it’s fast paced, and you’re onto the next lift/crunch/squeeze/kick just when you thought you had this one down.

I don't find myself frustrated with her workout style. I like it.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Metamorphosis by Tracy - Abcentric - Day 41 to 50

The arms and abs sequence speed up considerably. According to Tracy I should welcome the change and have no issues adapting. Obviously we haven’t met. I struggle for the first 5 days, then I sort of find my rhythm. Sort of. I feel majority of my arm definition is coming from the leg and butt sequence. You spend a lot of your time on your hands and knees, or plank position.

I enjoyed the ab moves during this phase. One move was impossible for me to do correctly, but I do hope I stimulated enough ab tissue to one day succeed.

Legs are my favorite Tracy moves. One because you do 20-40 of them so it’s easy to transition; and two I like to think my bum is lifting and firming. The last 2 moves are a challenge as I have no sense of balance. As well the last move on the left side is slightly different form the last move on the right side. While on one side Tracy lifts her leg up and down, on the other side she bends her leg in and out. I flip and flop between those on my days, but always do the same thing on both sides.