The Queen is Back…

It has been a while, I am moving my way back to the blogging scene. After travelling the world, marriage, 2 kiddos, life in the corporate world, I am entering the world of powerlifting again by offering virtual personal training. The availability is limited to a few hours a week, so get ahold of me if you would like powerlifting/weightlifting form critique. I will also start posting more YouTube videos of lifting technique, tips and a few tricks to just feel cool in the gym. I have a few recent pics on Instagram, so check that too.

Changing the Site!

It is time for me to get some resolve and get Responsive!  Responsive means that my website will have an optimal viewing experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices (from mobile phones to desktop computer monitors). I totally stole that definition from the “Wikipedia Responsive web design“” page.  This has taken my wordpress world to a new level.  So, bare with me as I tweak and twist until I am happy.

Lifting or Cardio First?

Here is an article that explains a lot about slow twitch and fast twitch muscles and what they are used for. Our bodies use carbohydrates before they use fat for energy. So, from this article we can see doing weightlifting first will burn up the carbohydrates. Then, when you do low intensity cardio, you should be burning fat. Good luck!

The muscles that hold your skeleton together and allow you to move are called skeletal muscles. They work voluntarily, meaning you consciously control their movement. Skeletal muscle is divided into fast- and slow-twitch fibers; fast-twitch muscles provide short bursts of power while slow-twitch fibers endure longer use without fatigue. The fibers will appear red or white, depending on their composition. While each has its own attributes, your body needs both types for optimal function.

Skeletal Muscle Fiber
The fibers in your skeletal muscles are striated; they have alternating light and dark bands that run perpendicular to the length of the fiber itself. Muscle fibers also differ in color based on the amount of myoglobin — a substance that stores oxygen until it is needed by the cell — they contain. Fibers also have different contraction rates, based on their ability to split the energy molecule ATP. Slow-twitch fibers, or type I fibers, contract as the name suggests — slowly. Fast twitch fibers are sub-divided into type IIA and type IIB fibers, both of which split ATP quickly.

Red Fibers
Type I and type IIA fibers contain high amounts of myoglobin and are capillary-rich, making them red in color. Both fibers generate energy aerobically, or with oxygen. Aerobic respiration produces little lactic acid, which fatigues muscles, allowing these muscle fibers to withstand longer use. Type I fibers, however, contract and split ATP more slowly than type IIA fibers and have lower amounts of creatine phosphate, a molecule needed for quick, explosive movements. Slow-twitch fibers are found in muscles used often, like those in the neck. Type IIA red fibers have high amounts of creatine phosphate and split ATP faster, making them more useful during sprints or jumping to dunk a basketball.

White Muscle Fibers
Type II B fibers are considered “white” muscle fibers due to their low content of myoglobin and fewer capillaries. They contain large amounts of glycogen, a stored form of carbohydrate energy that your body depends on for intense activity. Muscles use glycogen during weight or resistance training, for instance. White muscles generate ATP anaerobically, or without oxygen; this process leads to fatigue more quickly than red muscle fibers. Type II B fibers do, however, split ATP quickly and contract rapidly. The muscles in your arms are largely composed of type II B fibers.

Balance in the Body
Both white and red muscle fibers are needed by your body. You can, however, hone the amounts of certain types to suit your athletic endeavors. Sprinters and power lifters, for instance, need higher amounts of fast — white or red — fibers, while a marathon runner benefits most from large amounts of slow-twitch fibers. For the average person, however, performing activities that target both types is beneficial. Overuse of one type can break down muscles, tendons and ligaments, leaving you prone to injury; mixing up your workouts can prevent over-training.

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Big Life Changes

I have not posted in a while. It is because I have been reshaping of my life. It was a big process, but basically, every endeavor I took on over the last few years left me desiring one thing… A FAMILY! I made some big changes for my search, including downsizing my muscle. Most people thought I was looking for a man with big huge muscles, a “meat-head”. But, it was just the opposite. I wanted a man with brains and humor and at least an athletic body to pass on to our one day children.

Over the last 5 years, I had been chatting with a fan I met on facebook. And ever since I remember he had been asking me to marry him. There were times I even ignored him because I never thought we would meet in person and I wanted him to carry out his life. Well, he wouldn’t have that, and continued sending me messages of kindness and love. I am so glad he was persistent!

During those 5 years, he made some serious changes at the chance we would meet. He got a student visa to the United Kingdom, not an easy process for a young man from Pakistan. Then, he got accepted into the last group of people ever to be granted a Post Study Work visa for the UK, another great feat for him. Meanwhile, I finally agreed to come meet him in London. That was Sept 20, 2011. Our time together was better than I could have ever imagined.

Over the course of the next year, I knew if we were to end up together, I would have to make some serious decisions. One of which was leaving my new life in California, where I was waiting for my dream job to start. Another, was smoothing over the differences my close friends and family saw in my relationship with a Muslim man from Pakistan who was 10 years younger than I. I tackled this subject armed with patience and grace. It all worked out as I had hoped. Another mental obstacle to overcome was marrying a man who lived abroad and accepting the fact that it would be a process to bring him home to the USA.

I am into taking chances and if my friends proved me wrong, I am no longer afraid of making mistakes. A year after we met in person, we registered to be married. On Oct 16, 2012, we tied the knot in London. You know what, it was the best decision I have ever made. I am happily married to a man who loves me and respects me more than I ever thought possible.

To top it all off, our wedding night brought us a gift for a life time, as we are expecting our first child in July 2013. Dreams really do come true. And it may sound silly, but I feel like this goal was equivalent to becoming the Strongest Woman Ever. It took time and energy and life changes just the same. The reward, however, is much, much greater! I am blessed!