I decided that I want to end every week with a kind of reflection. I want to make sure I document the highs and lows of each week so I can remember that even things get tough, there are always good times. Sometimes when bad things happen, it’s easy to feel like things will never get better but it’s important to remember that with the bad comes the good!
This week was a great week! Between taking a much needed rest on Sunday to getting some much needed yoga practice in, it’s been a productive week!
I created an eBook about healthy living and some awesome printables to help you organize your meal planning.
9 Ways to Jumpstart your Workout Routine
Thinking Thin// Abandoning the “Fat” Mentality
An Easy Breakfast Hash Recipe
Currently // March
This week I was finally able to use a gift I received that was very dear to me. My great-grandmother recently passed away at the young age of 103. She always had Franciscan Desert Rose China and my mom was able to track down some pieces with that pattern to give to my sisters and I (my great-grandmother’s actual China was with a family member somewhere I believe). I was given a teacup and saucer along with her old train case. It still smells like her! I finally was able to use my teacup this week and I love that I have that in my possession!
I will admit that I completely screwed up in terms of diet and exercise this week. I don’t know why, but I feel like I just haven’t been able to stick with things as much as I’d like. I took Sunday off like usual- Sunday is a rest day in our house- then worked out Monday, Tuesday, and this morning. I just haven’t felt like I’ve been pushing myself hard enough and my diet is so poor! It made me feel pretty awful about myself this week, to be honest.
For this week, my goal is to eat a healthier diet but, most importantly, not be so hard on myself if I don’t. I have a bad habit of feeling guilty for not having great nutrition all the time and that’s just silly and needs to stop!
What are some of your highs and lows of this week and what are your goals for next week?
I follow a slew of incredible blogs, but one of the blogs I frequent the most as of late is Dearest Love. I met Jenna in undergrad at Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship years ago. I have followed her blog since she started it and I am in love with it! Every month, she does a “Currently” post. In those posts, she mentions different things she is currently doing. It could be things she is doing, reading, wishing, dreaming, anything. Each month has it’s own topics. Other bloggers will write their currently posts and they all link together so we can see what everyone is doing. It’s a really cool little circle and I decided I wanted to take part!
Dreaming of warmer weather! We have had some amazing weather the past couple of days and I wish it would stick around! Sadly, I know that it’s going to get back to around 40 degrees on Friday. I will definitely be cherishing the 80 degree weather we’re going to have tomorrow!
Planning for a busy season at work. I will be back to back to back with appointments for the next couple of months. I love it, but it is going to be really busy so I have to be organized! Combine that with the fact that I’m moving offices soon… I’ve got a lot to plan for.
Making a new habit. I am really trying to get into the habit of practicing yoga at least 4 times a week. I did it almost every day for a week and then I got busy. I have been increasingly exhausted every day, so yoga is on the back of my mind, but I always feel better when I practice so I’m trying to do it more often.
Baking nothing at the moment, but I made no-bakes yesterday!
Watching Empire. I LOVE this show. Cookie Lyons is my Spirit Animal! She’s so fierce and I love it!
What are your currently’s?
Breakfast foods are some of my favorite foods. I’m not talking about your toast and fruit or yogurt and granola. I’m talking about good, hearty breakfast foods. Pancakes, waffles, crepes, eggs, eggs benedict, bacon, sausage, all of that. I love them!
In our house, we save good breakfasts for the weekend. During the week, a bowl of oatmeal or yogurt will suffice, but on the weekends we go all out! We usually wake up a little bit later and I’ll make donuts or eggs benedict or french toast.
This past weekend, I wanted to make something different. We had a potato leftover from the week before so I decided I would make a breakfast hash.
Let me tell you, it was easy and so delicious! It was the perfect amount of savory, along with being warm and filling. I curled up in a blanket, watched Friends on Netflix, and ate breakfast with my husband. It was such a little moment- eating breakfast- that really started my day off on a positive note and I want to continue that tradition.
Breakfast Hash for Two
1 russet potato- diced
1 onion (I used red)- diced
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tbs basil
1 tbs oregano
1 tbs parsley
1/2 tbs garlic powder
1-2 tbs olive oil
Heat 1-2 tbs olive oil in a pan on the stove (medium, high heat)
When the pan is hot, add your potato and onion
Add all seasonings
Cook for 10-15 minutes or until potatoes are done- stirring often.
Top with an egg or some bacon and enjoy!
What is your favorite meal tradition?
The desire to lose weight is one that many people can relate to. For some people, the goal is maybe 10 pounds. A difficult task, but definitely doable without any other sort of necessary changes. For others (myself included), those who have to lose 20, 30, or even over 100 pounds, there is more to lose than just weight. We also have to lose our “fat” mentality. We need to think thin (or curvy or healthy or whatever your goal is!).
Losing weight is hard, but it is often the mental aspect of weight loss that is harder. Let’s use a hypothetical example to explain. Jane needs to lose 50 pounds. Jane changes her habits and starts eating better and moving more. Her clothes get loose and she has to buy smaller sizes. She notices that her tummy is flatter and her arms are getting smaller. People comment on her weight loss and it makes her feel good. She gets to her goal weight and, while she sees the loss, she still doesn’t FEEL like she’s at her goal weight. Instead of being happy that she made it, she feels like she failed because she doesn’t look the way she thought or she still needs to make some changes here or there. She still feels fat. This is much different than an eating disorder or body dysmorphic disorder. Those diseases are exactly that, diseases. This is someone who has spent their life (or more recent life) as “fat” and now does not know how to identify as being not “fat.” That can be a tough time! I’ve been through it and it’s not fun at all!
It’s a tough thing to avoid, but it is possible. In order to avoid this way of thinking you have to be proactive and you have to learn how to stay positive. It is so much easier said than done, but if you put in the work to make your mind right, your body will follow and you will thank yourself later.
After I gained back a lot of the weight I lost initially, I worked hard to lose it again– the right way. I took it slow and didn’t over do it. I made my goals more realistic and I gave myself more wiggle room. More importantly, I adopted habits to keep me from feeling negatively about myself for gaining weight back.
Instead of focusing on the scale, I focused on what I was capable of. I became stronger and faster and I used that to push me to keep up my good work. I also made sure to (try) to balance out all negative thoughts with positive ones. If I thought something bad about myself, I would find one positive thing about myself so I could continue thinking positively.
Lately, I’ve found that yoga has really helped. Yoga is great for your muscles as exercise, but it is also great for your mind. It gives you an opportunity to just be with yourself for an hour (or however long your class is). How often do you have time to just be with yourself and focused on you for 100% of the time? It’s very rare. Meditation during shavasana (the last part of a yoga class, generally) can be a time that can really open your mind up to things that you may be too busy to realize otherwise. Use shavasana to reflect on positivity and mantras of self-worth and self-esteem. It will change the way you think!
Lastly, and most importantly, the best way to avoid the “fat” mentality is to set realistic goals. Don’t say “I’m going to weigh 120 pounds and have a 6 pack” because you don’t know that! Set goals like “I’m going to get stronger and I’m going to improve my blood pressure.” If you must set a goal that has to do with weight, don’t add anything. Talk with your doctor about a healthy weight. Don’t aim to be 110 pounds if you’re 6 feet tall because, for most people, that wouldn’t be healthy. Don’t put any aesthetic expectations with a weight because 120, 130, 150, 170 pounds will look different on everyone.
If you already are dealing with the “fat” mentality, I strongly encourage you to take some time to write out what you’re feeling and why you’re feeling it. When you put it all down on paper, you’ll see that that standards you set for yourself can be ridiculous. At the end of the day, what you are capable of is important and the only person who needs to love what you look like is YOU.
Even though it’s still cold and there are eleventybillion feet of snow up north, Spring Break is, in fact, almost here. After Spring Break comes Memorial Day and everyone knows Memorial Day is what kicks off the summer. It’s when you can start to wear white again (even though I wear white year-round- what a rebel), you start seeking out the friends of your friends that have boats, trips to the lake/beach/river become more common, and life just feels a little happier in general.
You know you acted like a bear and hibernated from the gym throughout the winter. I’m not judging you. It happens. We get cold and the warm bed is a lot more enticing than the gym in the mornings. What you CAN do, however, is shake of that mentality. It’s March! It’s time to wipe our winter-fogged eyes, pull out our sandals (even if they just sit there and look nice because, after all, it is still snowing in places), and get ready for summer.
Curvy, skinny, muscular, voluptuous, whatever skin you’re comfortable in, getting your butt to the gym for some post-winter sweat sessions will help you feel better and be more confident this summer.
It can be hard to get back into a routine if you’ve been out of one for awhile, so here are 9 ways you can jumpstart your workout routine!
- Join a gym
This seems obvious, but there’s a method to the obvious madness. When you buy something, you are committed to it. You will be more likely to go use something you pay for than you are just saying “I’m going to go running this week.” If you pay for a membership, you are invested and more likely to get your workout on.
- Find a class you enjoy
Most gyms offer classes to members, so find one you enjoy and get in there! Zumba, aerobics, cardio-lifting classes, yoga, kickboxing…whatever it is, get in there! You’ll be more inclined to go when you know you enjoy your workouts!
- Find a workout buddy
Things are always more fun with a friend! If you need that extra push to get to the gym, find someone who will go with you and keep each other accountable!
- Incentivize your workouts
Make a goal and reward yourself for meeting that goal. Did you go to the gym 4 times this week? Go get your toes done. Did you lose a pound? Put a dollar in a jar and save for some new shoes or a night out.
- Keep yourself accountable.
Set goals and don’t blow them off. It is really easy to say “well, I’m not going to meet my goal, so I’m gonna give up now.” DON’T DO THAT! Make smaller goals and think about them. The first week back, maybe aim to get to the gym 2-3 times. Be reasonable and keep yourself accountable!
- Try a pre-workout
Let me tell you something. Nothing will get me off my butt faster than a pre-workout. I recommend C4 by Cellucor. Pre-workouts can really help pump you up. I like C4 best because I don’t crash afterwards.
- Get a new outfit
New clothes always motivate me to workout! I always want to wear my new stuff so I like to go to TJ Maxx and look around for new workout clothes whenever I get in a rut.
- Find a program to follow
If you’re really lost and don’t know where to start, there are a ton of free workout programs out there. Bodybuilding.com has a ton of workouts on their site. Pick one you like and follow it!
- Always get dressed
This sounds like a “duh” point, but hear me out. Anytime I don’t know if I want to workout, I always put on my workout clothes. Shoes and everything. Once I do that, I very rarely ever stay home because I’ve already taken the time to get my clothes on. If you’re still not feeling it, get your stuff and get out the door. Then you really won’t turn around.
At the end of the day, you have to be determined. You need to commit. That run won’t happen if you don’t make it happen, but these tips will get you going on the days you feel like skipping out! If you want more tips and tricks, head over to the Shop tab and check out my new eBook!
I’m really excited about today!
Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve spent a lot of time creating a few things for you guys. First, an eBook! I get a lot of questions about how I lost weight, how I was able to stay healthy, and how I live a healthy lifestyle. I love responding to everyone, but I thought it may be nice to have all that information in one place, so I wrote an eBook about it!
This eBook includes some tips on living healthy, a short grocery list, some healthy cooking tips, and more!
I also created a few printables!
The first is a weekly meal planning printable that allows you to plan your meals for the week, write out a list of groceries you may need, and add some notes (like where to find a recipe).
The second is a monthly planning printable. I really like the monthly planning printable because it allows me to take the events I have planned into consideration when planning meals and grocery trips!
I’m really excited about these products because I find them really useful and I think you will too!
Let me know what you think!
I have a huge sweet tooth so I love making cookies. The problem with making cookies is that you have to make a lot of them and who can really only have one cookie when there is a plate full of them sitting on your kitchen counter? Most cookies aren’t very healthy either. While I am all for having fresh baked cookies in moderation, sometimes I just want something sweet that won’t throw me off track.
Enter: the cookie that will save your diet. The 4 ingredient chocolate chip no bake cookie that has no flour, no eggs, no oil, and no butter.
I posted this the other day and, let me tell you, I’ve made it twice since then. It is seriously awesome and so easy to make!
All it takes is 4 ingredients and 3 minutes of your time. Not too bad of a deal, huh?
- 1/4 cup quick oats
- 2 tbs PB2
- 2-3 tbs vanilla almond milk
- 1 tbs mini chocolate chips
- Mix together all ingredients except the chocolate chips- start with 2 tbs almond milk and add more as needed (it will be a sticky consistency- a little drier than regular cookie dough).
- Add chocolate chips.
- Microwave if you want to melt the chocolate chips
It is so good! And so easy!
It would also be good if you add vanilla.
Talk to me below!
What’s your favorite cookie?
I cannot believe that February is almost over! I feel like it was just New Years and here we are, almost into March. February is always such a sweet month and there were so many awesome things that I did and tried.
After reflecting on the month, I realized that I’ve sort of forgotten all of the great things from previous months. Because of that, I wanted to start a new segment on the blog that highlights some of my favorite things each month. I think it will be a good way to reflect on the positive things from the month and it will also give me a chance to share about new products (or old products) that I used and loved!
Each month will consist of 3 parts:
So, right now, let’s start with February Favorites!
Favorite Thing| Quest Nutrition Products
While Quest bars are usually always on my favorite things list, they were especially useful this month. With all the traveling I did, I really depended on Quest products to keep me on track. For example, I traveled from 3:00 until about 8:00 on my way to New York and I never had time to get something to eat. It would have been really easy to grab some chips from the airport, but I packed some Quest bars and some Quest chips so I didn’t have to be limited to whatever the convenience stores had. I got enough protein to keep me full until I was able to get a late dinner (it was 10:00 before I ate!) and I was able to “cheat clean” as Quest likes to say. +1 for Quest bars in February!
Favorite Moment| New York City
It’s no surprise that my favorite moment of February was traveling to New York City for Valentine’s day. The view from our place was amazing, I got to see Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, I ate amazing food from Shake Shack, Carlos Bakery, and Katz Deli, and I got my picture taken by Humans of New York at the Met. It was such an amazing trip! I had been to New York twice before this trip, but this was the first time I went that I was able to explore the city on my own terms and I really fell in love with the city during this trip. I can’t wait to go back (in the spring or summer time) and see more!
Favorite Food| Eggs Benedict
February was the month of the eggs benedict. Nearly every time we went to brunch, I got eggs benedict. Something about it just makes my heart really happy. It’s such a comfort food. I also ate the best eggs benedict I’ve ever had this month. North Beach Bar and Grill on Tybee Island, Ga added smoked salmon to their benedict and took away the bread. SO good.
Overall, I’d have to say February was an amazing month. Hopefully March follow suit!
Talk with me below!
What was your favorite thing, moment, and food of February?
After back to back weekends out of town, I am seriously feeling the sluggish effects of eating poorly. Last week, I had a tough time getting back on track after New York City and then last weekend I went to Atlanta to surprise my mom for her birthday. We went to a restaurant called McKendrick’s. It’s a really nice steakhouse and the food was AMAZING. They had this lobster mac n cheese that was to DIE for.
On Sunday, I met up with Becca for brunch at J. Cristophers. I got the Eggs Cristopher. It was like an eggs benedict, but it had tomato, bacon, and turkey. Based on my history with brunch, it’s obvious that I love eggs benedict.
The weekend was a lot of fun, but I was so stuffed full of rich and delicious food that I felt so blah.
I decided to come at this week hard, so I started the week off with a delicious smoothie. It was a protein packed vanilla peanut butter banana smoothie and it was AMAZING.
All I used was 1 packet of Summit Nutritions 100% Pure Whey Protein Isolate in Vanilla Alpine flavor, 1 cup of vanilla almond milk, 2 tbs of dry PB2, and 1 banana.
Summit Nutritions sent me some of their protein to try in exchange for an honest review so I decided to mix it into a couple of smoothies.
Summit Nutritions 100% Pure Whey Protein Isolate is a protein powder that has far less carbs and fat and the same amount of protein as other protein powder brands. It is gluten-free, lactose-free, has no GMO’s, and it is sweetened with Stevia.
I tried it mixed with 8 oz of water and, honestly, I wasn’t a fan. It is incredibly good for you, but the taste isn’t very strong. You would need to mix it with milk or almond milk. It IS however, amazing in smoothies. It has a faint sweet taste and is perfect for sweetening up a smoothie and adding a ton of protein.
I would definitely purchase this product again simply because it is a great way to add a lot of protein to something drastically changing the taste of what you’re trying to make. I think it would be great in iced coffee (NOT HOT- The whey will bake- YUCK).
Overall, I’d give this product a 7/10. It didn’t knock my socks off, but there were definitely more pro’s than con’s!
Do you use protein powders in your smoothies?
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above in exchange for an honest review of this product. I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
After a month of blogging and a feature on Humans of New York, I feel like it’s time for me to share a little more about me.
I don’t want to write a biography because that’s boring, so I thought I would put together a little list of things about me!
- I grew up in Northern California
- I have 2 younger sisters!
- I live in Savannah, Ga with my husband and 2 fur babies
- We’ve been married for almost 3 years.
- I battled anorexia from age 8 to age 16.
- From age 16 to age 20 I battled with binge eating.
- It took a doctors appointment telling me I had high cholesterol and was classified as pre-diabetic to get my ass into gear.
- I had a membership to a gym on campus but I paid for a gym off campus because that’s what I was comfortable with.
- I used MyFitnessPal to track my food.
- I ran. A LOT.
- My official starting weight in March 2011 was 163 lbs.
- I weighed 115 lbs in November of 2011.
- Over the next couple of years I gained back a lot of that weight due to losing it so quickly.
- After gaining back some of what I lost, I realized I needed to live healthy instead of aim for skinny.
- Now I maintain around 130 and I don’t stress!
- I’m no longer classified as pre-diabetes
- I’ve run multiple 5ks, 2 half marathons, a Warrior Dash, and a Tough Mudder.
- My pant sizes range from a 1 to a 12 (not even kidding- pant sizes are stupid)
- My favorite food is cheese and Cuban pastelitos.
- My favorite movie is Armageddon
- My second favorite movie is Die Hard.
- I have a Bachelors of Science in Psychology and a Masters of Education in Higher Education Administration
- I work as an academic advisor at a university and I LOVE it.
- I have a running buddy and she’s the BEST. We run on Tuesday’s after work.
- I have a pretty weird sense of humor.
- I don’t have a gallbladder or an appendix.
- I love to travel but I get really anxious about going places I haven’t been (SPOILER ALERT: I do it anyway).
- I still watch WWE (not even ashamed).
- Law and Order SVU and Criminal Minds are my go-to binge watching shows.
- I’ve seen every X-Men movie in theaters on opening weekend.
I tell yall this because I really am just a normal person who was obese, worked hard, and got healthy. When I say anyone can do it if I can do it, I really mean it! I wouldn’t sit in a gym parking lot, much less work out in a gym. I was able to change my life around and I sincerely hope I can motivate you as you live healthy with me!