I am so excited to be writing another Back to Fitness post. If you are new here, this series is not meant to be expert opinion or medical information. I share my struggles and triumphs along with some practical, helpful tips and suggestions. The whole purpose of my sharing these experiences is to give you gals some examples from what I’ve been through, as a three time mom, who has gone back to fitness full force again, and again. If I have done it, I know you have it in you to reach your goals as well.

You don’t really need to have been in the exact same situations as me either for us to support each other in our journey to a healthy& fit body and mind. I intend Theboxqueen’s Back to Fitness to be a warm and fuzzy place where you can ask me any questions you are curious about, ( and I feature them weekly) and your little happy fitness inspiration where someone is cheering you on with your workouts and nutritional changes.  I believe in girls being kind to one another, and we can get & stay healthy together!

In case you are new to theboxqueen fitness series, you may want to start from the beginning to read about my past athletic endeavors and how I started off to be active again after my little ones were born. ( Back to Fitness 1, 2, 3, 4 )

Theboxqueen's Back to Fitness

I have been away from the gym for about ten days ( the reason why fitness was missing last week. ) as my five year old son got a pretty nasty cold that needed quite a bit of pediatrician trips. The fact that I was exhausted and so worried about him combined with all the doc trips, really made me forget all about the gym for a moment there. Instead I went back to two of my calorie torching DVD’s for some home exercises. Actually when you think of it, this in itself is a mini away from fitness time. I know all the facts; in stressful times exercise is an amazing stress relief. Sometimes though facts don’t need to be followed. When you have other top priorities, in my experience my son, it is OK to stop for a while, take a breather, re-energize. Let yourself be OK with it ( because really when does beating yourself up works anyways? Like, never! ) and of course when you are ready; get back to fitness full force again.

When I was home with Bo, I went back to my home fitness days and did a couple workouts with my DVD’s.  Two of those never fail me.

  • The first one is Xtend Barre: Lean & Chiseled. This one is perfect for strength. Remember I told you here how the first year or so I was a hardcore home exerciser. This was one of the DVD’s that got me back to shape. If you like ballet, and cardio; this workout program is a mix of those two. It has done wonders for my legs and the back side of body, followed next by the arms. The arm exercises with 2 pounders feels like 50 pounds of dumbbells  (Yes really! My supportive hubby was just a tad sarcastic about the 2 pounds. I made the guy who seriously lifts at the gym try the arm routine, and he may have weeped a little- shush totally between you and me 🙂 ) This particular barre routine is different from other barre DVD’s as it’s fast paced and never boring.
  • The second DVD I did was my home cardio favorite; Amy Dixon Breathless Body 2: The Edge. Ladies, this workout is IN-TEN-SE and oh so amazing when you can’t get to the gym but want to do a serious gym like class. (This was fitness magazine’s top ten for 2013 too. ) Amy Dixon is so great at getting you started and then helping you stay committed. Brathless Body Edge is  a threshold training & high intensity interval workout. It consists of 4 major high intensity interval sets. Each set has 3 drills in them and at the end there is a 6 minute nonstop combination. Ladies, my polar heart rate machine tells me, I burn the most of calories I’ve ever burnt at home with this DVD. If you try it though, don’t be discouraged. The first time I tried this I was like a deer in headlights. At first you may or may not be able to finish the whole workout. Don’t worry and keep at it. Even 20 min. of this gem does wonders for your body. Tried and tested. 🙂

This week I went back to my fitness club. I started sharing with you in my last post some gym classes I’ve taken and loved. Here are two more I tried this week.

Group Ride

This class, having a pretty literal name, is a cycling class where you join a group of others in a cycling studio and pedal over hills, climb mountains, and work really hard to strengthen your lower body while burning a whole lot of calories. The one I tried was a 60 min. class with a really motivating instructor and pretty energizing music. Everything sounds so much fun right? (and I bet it is for a lot of people as the class is packed) For me though, sitting on that bike was unbelievably uncomfortable, like can’t feel body parts uncomfortable. I got the bike adjusted to my height too so I don’t think that’s the problem. I was able to get through the whole class, as I wanted to give the class a fair try. Honestly, in the end, I left feeling uninspired. I will give group ride a try once more and see if my mind changes. I wanted to share this experience with you as I feel we don’t have to like each workout program that’s out there. The key is to figure out what inspires you and what works for you! Group Ride may not be my thing; we’ll see.

Do you like cycling classes? Do you have any tips for me that would make the experience less painful? 🙂


Here we have another literal class name as Insanity is IN-SA-NE!!! You better believe it too, this class really is designed to whip you back into shape, and fast! I tried it a couple times at the end of last year with hubby. After a hiatus, I decided to give it another go. I used to own the home fitness system of the same brand! This in class option is just as effective. Insanity classes has non-stop intervals with strength, power, and core exercises. We went from jumping jacks, to push ups, to high jumps, and burpees. The whole class left me breathless, and was a total sweat-fest ( as gross as it may sound 🙂 and I LOVED it! I would recommend insanity classes to anyone wanting cardio that gets the job done.

Have you ever tried the Insanity workout? Did you like it?

This week I got a really nice e-mail from a reader with a great question. Keep in mind that if you rather chat privately you can always e-mail me.

Emma asked ” I am intrigued by journaling my nutrition and exercise. Can you give us an example of a day from your MyFitnessPal app including what you ate and that day’s workout” ?

I thought this was such a creative question and would love to share one of my full day MFP entries. I will also share what my calorie goals were for that day. (Please keep in mind that everyone’s daily intake goal differs depending on their height, weight etc and this is just an example of what I did to lose my extra weight after my youngest was born.)

This particular MFP entry is from last summer when I was actively trying to lose the last couple of pounds. Let me say here again; I think fitness is for health more than anything! In the meantime though losing a couple of the extra baby pounds was a big bonus! Here my daily goal was set at 1300 calories. ( I bought a simple kitchen scale for measuring my food to record in the journal)

 A Day in My Fitness Pal

This entry is from about ten months ago. Right now I am on maintenance but at that time was still seeking to lose. The way journaling works is you come up with total calories from your daily nutrition. Let’s say it comes to 1500 cal. If you workout that day and lose 400 calls you subtract it from the daily cal intake and your end of the day would come to 1100 (which would be too low if your goal was 1300 for the day. Remember this post where I talked about this in detail) You will see that I ate a lot but smartly and balanced it out with my workout. This is my favorite part about journaling; eating smart but enjoying your food!


New Seasons Whole Wheat seven grain bread: Three slices :240 cal

Kirkland Goat Cheese: 1.5 ounce 120 cal

Organic Blackberry Fruit Spread: 0.5 tbsp 23 cal

Total: 383


Organic Whole Wheat Tortilla 1:  110 cal

Fresh Romaine Salad: 1.6 cups : 16 cal

Chicken breast Fajita Strips: 3 oz. : 110 cal

Olive oil Extra Virgin: 1 teaspoon-: 40 cal

Total: 276


Eggs: 2.3 161 cal

Romaine Salad: 2 cups 20 cal

Extra Virgin Olive Oil: 1 tsp 40 cal

Total: 221 cals

Snacks throughout the day ( You didn’t think I would not eat snacks right 🙂 )

Almonds (5) Raisins (1/8 cup) : 100 cals

Organic Milk chocolate: 4 pieces 70 calls ( of course dark chocolate is better for you!)

Frozen berries: 140 grams 70 cals

Popcorn (popped in a pan- no butter): 2.4 tps 110 cal

2,5 apples throughout the day:  175 cals

Total: 525 cals

At this point my food intake for the whole day is: 1405 cals


This was a rest day so I did 30 min. of yoga at home. Calories burnt: 70

In the end 1405 calls eaten -70 burnt I equaled 1335 cals. Pretty close to my goals.

Emma I hope my example helped give you a better idea into journaling. I would love to hear your experiences!

Next week I will continue with some fitness fashion and more reader questions.

As always I would love to hear from you and talk fitness; drop me a note. I would like to see how you’ve been doing with your fitness goals, and your thoughts on your favorite exercise classes/programs! I love cheering you on in your fitness journey!

If you haven’t still joined theboxqueen make sure to sign up here on the blog to get all kinds of updates. You can also find all my social media below and reach me there or via my e-mail anytime!

It’s finally spring here! Get out there and have some fun outdoor workouts; you deserve it! 🙂 XOXO,


I am linking up with a fun party at Friday’s Fab Favorites. 

PS: This is not a sponsored post and features my own experiences and all the items I personally have and use. There are a couple affiliate links and if you’ve used them thank you!

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  • You’re doing a great job with this series. 🙂 I would LOVE to try an in-person Insanity class. I have the DVD series and sometimes my husband and I do it together with our own music…their music is so not motivating to me. But it is motivating to have another person pushing along with me, so I think a big class setting would be super fun but I’ve never seen them in my area.

    • Gina, thx so much; means a lot. These series has so much of my passion in them. 🙂 The class insanity is amazing; wish you can find it in your area. The people in the class are so dedicated too; it’s so inspiring. XOXO, Elif

  • sibel gultekin

    The most difficult part of losing weight is constantly monitor food intake. I am following your advise. Thanks

    • It sure is they say it is 80% food and I agree; nutrition is the key to losing weight. I am so happy you found some inspiration here! XOXO, Elif

  • You look great! Keep up the hard work.


  • Rachel G

    I’ve never tried a cycling class, though I really enjoy real biking outdoors! Certain kinds of bike seats are pretty uncomfortable, though.

    • I like biking too and those bike seats feel more comfy, maybe it’s the certain cycling bike seats that are so uncomfortable. XOXO, Elif

  • You look so nice in your funky fitness attire, Elif! 🙂
    I never calculate calories when eating. I know when I’m full, I’m full. I don’t eat too much any way. But I try to eat healthy and have a balanced diet of protein, carbs, minerals and vitamins.
    When I used to go to the gym, my favourite classes were “Core Stability” and “Power Pump”. The first one built serious strength in my core for the period I was going, while the other one was pain and building up. Now I don’t go to classes anymore, but I have the kit at home and do my workouts whenever I feel like.
    The summer is coming soon, so we’ve got 3 months to get in shape, right? ;))

    Lu ❤

    • Yes Lu, we need these three months to get into summer shape; we can do it!! Three months is actually pretty good amount of time for body change 🙂 I have done Core Stability type of classes before and they are hard but does amazing things for the abs for sure! <3 Have seen my gym friends try the Power Pump class but those weights look heavy and I am more of a cardio girl. Maybe time for me to try smt. new. Thx for the sweetness as always, XOXO, Elif

  • Tban

    Thank you for the encouragement, Elif. I have never counted calories. And sometimes can diet rather unhealthily without getting enough nutrients that are needed for your body to function well. As you said exercise and diet is about being healthy and happy to while you reach your fitness goals.

    • That’s exactly why I started journaling. I don’t do it everyday anymore just when I need to; but for a good two years I did it everyday, everything I ate I wrote. My goals was never to drop things I love from my diet( I LOVE food too much for that) but to learn how much of food is the right amount to stay fit, healthy. Journaling has taught me so much as the app I used showed the daily nutrition levels so I could form healthy eating habits learning what gives my body it’s needed nutrients. I am so HAPPY you are encouraged ; I am always here to cheer you on! XOXO, Elif

  • I have gone Paleo for the past 5 days and planning to do it for at least 30 days if not more. So far so good, I managed beautifully.. no cravings except for coffee. I’m hoping to loose a few pounds through this and some exercise I have always been doing. You are very motivated and that’s very encouraging 🙂 I’m following you on Instagram. Would love for you to check out my page too 🙂 (MRSC_2012)

    Mrs Jack Of All Trades

    • Mrs C, Paleo sounds really interesting; I have seen it, I believe on Dr. Oz show, before. I would LOVE to hear what your experiences with it will be this month or so! I am so happy you got encouraged coming here; that’s definitely my hope for this series! 🙂 Some girl power and support is the best for keeping up with fitness ( and anything in life really, right? <3) <3 Make sure to come back and tell me more about how this is all going! Kudos to you for staying so healthy and fit! <3<3 XOXO, Elif

  • Sophia

    I like how you shared a day from your MFP journal. It encouraged me to take a closer look at my entries. Also great home DVD suggestions. I looked at the extend barre one and will give that a try. Can’t wait for next week’s post.

    • Glad to hear the MFP entry was useful! 🙂 How do you use it? Daily? Are you trying to lose or to maintain? The Xtend Barre DVD is an excellent choice; never boring and intense strengthening/cardio mix! Let me know how you like it after you try the DVD! XOXO, Elif