Refresh Review and Results

This is a long one… but i think it’s important to provide a thorough review!!! 

Before

I think I have been researching cleanses for 2 years. I have read about them all, juice cleanses, elimination diets, even an egg cleanse? I didn’t know where to turn, and I found most of them disheartening because they require little to no actual eating for a prolonged period of time.

 

I already don’t eat enough foods due to dietary restrictions, why would I want to restrict myself to less food! The thought of NOT eating for days and just drinking juices scared me even more. I’ve seen plenty of people who have great results… but have I mentioned before that I’m a “texture” person? I like crunch and chewing.

When I was in Vegas recently, I heard about the launch for the 3-Day Refresh. It is a 3 day cleanse that combines the usage of Shakes and small meals. Not only was this a 3 days (who can’t do something for 3 days??) cleanse, but it also had food integrated into the plan! I could eat!

 

Here’s what I knew about the cleanse going in…

It is meant to be a jump start that will not only help you lose weight but also provide you some real life experience with healthier eating habits.

Unlike other cleanses, where the weight comes creeping back on, this one was created different. Most juice cleanses tax your organs, do a number on your metabolism and leave you feeling upset regardless of the results. Heck, I would think not eating for days would do a number on my emotions! Have you ever seen a Hangry girl??

The 3-Day Refresh was scientifically designed to do just this opposite of a normal cleanse. It was formulated to detoxify and cleanse, while also supporting your metabolism. No internal battles necessary. You eat, nutritious whole foods during the process to re-energize your organs. Because of the science behind it, you should not only lose weight, but feel better because your body is functioning more efficiently.

Interest peaked… so what does it mean? What do I have to do?

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The plan is simple, follow the exact same diet guidelines for 3 days! 3 Shakes a day, one fiber drink, loads of filtered water, 3 small meals and plenty of fruits and veggies to snack on through the day.

Now, here’s a small confession, I’m a review snob. I have to be. I work in healthcare, who has willy nilly amounts of $$ to go spend on things without seeing people’s results and real life experiences. So after leaving Vegas, I sort of lurked for a while. I know that sounds creepy… but not really! I just kept my eyes on my teammates results, reviews about the taste of the products… etc.

After 2 weeks of seeing people’s results, I just had to try it for myself. It seemed like the average loss was 3 lbs, 3 inches in 3 days.

 Now, I know most of you are thinking? What 3 lbs does Eiren have to lose?

When I was prepping for Vegas I was eating a SUPER restricted diet! Chicken and Sweet potatoes, egg whites, and that was pretty much IT!! I was leaning down for that Classic. (Must write a review on that experience too?)

When I got home, I got much more relaxed about my diet. My workouts were still killer, I got in that habit before I left. However, I was doing great during the workday… breakfast through lunch I gave myself gold stars. However, I found that I was snacking on a protein bar on the ride home. Did I need the ENTIRE bar? No. When I got home, first thing I did was open the pantry and grab a handful of tortilla chips. Then I’d do my afternoon workout. Then, not even a half hour before dinner, I would grab a small bowl of more tortilla chips, some baby carrots and asparagus, throw some shredded vegan cheese on and eat a mini bowl of nachos. Not even 45 minutes later I would be eating a gigunda bowl of veggies and protein for dinner. And some nights, I found that I was even eating another handful of tortilla chips. SIGH… In 4 weeks I put on 5 lbs. When you’re barely pushing 5’1, any lb makes a difference.

I thought, going into this, it would be a great wake up call for me. Get out of your head Eiren. Not only reset your body, but reset your mind.

So I pressed Add to basket.

 During…

I decided to start my cleanse on Monday, 7/21. I figured Monday’s were good. No weekend distractions, and I am always WAY more structured during the work week.

 I wasn’t feeling great all weekend, had the chills and body aches, but I thought I would push on. I can wish myself well!

  •  DAY 1

Monday morning, I got up, drank 8 oz of water and then did my normal workout – P90X3 Accelerator.

 After, I made my Shakeology “pudding” with mixed berries (through the plan) and then drank 16 oz of water to make up for the rest of the water I should have drank in the shake (I’m not a huge fan of shakes in the morning, so I improvised). I also had a very small, less than a cup, of coffee. Caffeine is discouraged, but I get up so early and it’s part of my day… so I figured a ½ a cup wouldn’t kill me!

shakeo

 By about 9 am, I started to get a little hungry, so I figured it was no time like the present to try the Fiber Sweep. Duh Duh Doh! What would this entail?? It wasn’t so bad! I mixed it up in my shaker at work with some cold water. I definitely think I would have benefit from a blender though. Apparently my guns aren’t as great as I thought. I was worried that I would be running to the bathroom though… nope.

I still wasn’t feeling great though, still had the chills through the day… I had meetings all afternoon, so I went down to the gym and did a half of a workout of arms thinking that I would sweat out whatever was nagging me. Didn’t work!

Lunch was a creative idea that I got… I decided on Sunday to make my Vanilla Fresh into a creation and then drink the water again like I did for the breakfast. I made #strangebutgood from Sprint2theTable jicama porridge! It was amazing! I added some cinnamon and ginger spices (free foods on the cleanse) and ½ an apple for some crunch. Amazingly delic!

jicama porridge

At this point, I wasn’t hungry at all by my usual 3 pm snack attack. But I ate anyways. I had baby carrots and hummus.

snack 1

By dinner, I knew I had my Vanilla Refresh to drink again, and I was trying to think about what to make for dinner. The kit comes with recipes to follow. I made a stir fry veggie bowl. I actually made this for all three nights! It was easy to fry the veggies up in one pan and then save and reheat them the next few nights. For the Shake I added a little more ice to make it like an ice cream and I ate it with a spoon.

stirfry dinner

  • Day 2:

Oh boy, I work up with the cold sweats and chills! I ended up taking a day off from work… well I worked from home, a day off from working out and just rested at home. I don’t think this was because of the cleanse, because I wasn’t feeling well starting on Saturday. But, I guess if anything, it was a smack in the face that I needed to actually REST completely! I didn’t have much of an appetite, but I did eat the plan as guided.

Meal 1: Shakeology pudding with mixed berries

Meal 2: Fiber Sweep

Meal 3: Vanilla Refresh with Avocado, Mango and Kale.

shake

shake 2

Meal 4: Mix of baby carrots and cherry tomatoes with some hummus.

Meal 5: Kale and tomatoes with coconut oil and a vanilla shake.

kale salad

I think I drank my body weight x2 in water on this day!!!

  • Day 3:

Like I said, I can “will myself well”. So I got up, and pretended it was business like usual. Went downstairs and did a light cardio workout for 30 minutes. I kept it light because I know this is a restricted diet to what I normally eat and what my body needs when I’m doing my usual workouts.

The only difference in meals between Day 2 and 3 was lunch… which was a horrible attempt at creating a recipe from the shake. I am the queen of baking with protein powders. I tried to make waffles… but stupid me, without a binder they won’t stick! I used pureed apple and green veggs to make what looked like a good batter. I had to leave them in the waffle iron for 15 minutes to get them off the iron! Lol! But I ate them anyways! I will not waste a shake.

I think the plan is supposed to follow the “vegan raw” diet. However, after a while, I need something else. So I mixed it up….

Oh and my afternoon snack was summer squash instead of carrots and tomatoes.

snack

 Review/Results:

  •  I wasn’t hungry!
  • I heard mixed reviews about the Fiber Sweep and Vanilla Refresh tasting funny… I didn’t think they were bad. I don’t think I would drink the fiber sweep on a daily basis! But it wasn’t horrid!
  • I actually enjoyed the vanilla refresh. I think if you make it properly and add certain foods to it, it blended well!
  • I think the one things that surprised me MOST about this… I wasn’t hungry that often! When I did get hungry, I drank more water. I actually drank A LOT more water than I usually do! I think this is something I need to continue on with!

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  • This one may be TMI for some, but I was SHOCKED at my digestion. I feel like it reset me completely. For the first time in a while, I had NO stomach pain on Day 1 or 3 (2 was iffy because of the sick situation) or gassy bloating. And I actually had normal BMs both day 3 and the day after!! Internally, my tummy feels fabulous!!!!!!!!!!!!

So let’s get down to the brass tax here… what you all want to know about the weight loss?

  • Start Weight: 126.5        End Weight: 119.6 = 6.9 lbs lost (my normal weight is usually around 122, so I’ll be happy around that!!!)
  • Inches lost:   Belly: 3.5 inches Natural Waist – 2.5 inches

 

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I am entirely aware that most of this is water weight, but what a great way to not only re-set your body but, if I’m ever in pinch for a big event or anything… I will DEFINITELY be doing this again!!!!

Lessons Learned and Tips

  1. It’s only 3 days, you can do anything!
  2. Don’t do a cleanse when you don’t feel well!! I was already “in it” and didn’t want to waste the packets and the $$ I spent on the kit.
  3. My portion control was OUT OF CONTROL! I am going to definitely scale back to normal sized bowls for one! And get back to measuring out foods.
  4. Don’t exercise during a cleanse. Give your body a full time to rest. Or if you are going to do something make it an active rest, ie walk or bike ride.
  5. I don’t need that much coffee, but I will continue to drink it anyways… (we all have our vices!) But I can cut out the afternoon runs to Starbucks! This will help save some extra $$ too!
  6. I need to drink MORE water!
  7. Find ways to get creative if you can… one thing I do is add flavor drops. My favorite are Capella’s Flavor Drops found on Netrition I love the Peanut butter and Green apple!! They have OOOOODLES of flavors too!

capellas drops

  1. Fully aware this is water weight, and I will probably gain some back!

 

Have you ever tried a cleanse?  How did you feel after? 

 

oxo

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Mind over Munch!

 

We have all been there… it’s 3 pm, we are walking by the office kitchen or “snack area” and we see the leftover cookies from lunch.  We see it, smell it, grab it, and just go.  There’s no thinking.
Or everytime we walk by the candy dish, we grab a handful of M&M’s.  After 5 trips by that bowl through the day, you’ve eaten a lot of sugar and calories without even thinking about it.
We have to train our brains to STOP mindless eating.  We are doing a disservice to ourselves and our bodies.
Mindless eating is defined as eating while distracted, hurried or in a state of high emotion (excitement is included in this!).  I have fallen prey to this multiple times.  It typically happens when watching TV for me!  Everything from an exciting football game, to the last minutes of a chopped challenge!  (how did they cook all of that food in 20 minutes?!?)
Mindless eating falls into a few categories,

  • distracted eating – when you’re not fully aware you’re doing it.  I sometimes will eat while i’m making dinner!  I don’t even realize that i’m not just tasting the food to see if it tastes right, no i’m full on eating an entire meal before my dinner!
  • emotional eating – most of us are women here! we eat when we’re sad, depressed… or if we’ve had a bad day and we need to “soothe” ourselves with something comforting.
  • stress eating – when we come home from work and just need to unwind, so we grab the first thing we can, sit down and just eat to forget the day.

So how can we get a handle on these chaotic eating habits??? And make it Mind over munch??
Slow Down!  Enjoy your meal or snacks vs. scarfing it down!  I heard once to actually chew your food.  Weird to think about it, but even having that quick reminder to yourself, will slow you down!
Limit distractions – turn off the tv, get off the phone.  This is also a great time to just enjoy the fruits of your labor of cooking too!  You’ll learn to enjoy the time with your family as well!
Eat sitting down – when we’re standing we tend to graze more! If you sit down with a plate, you’ll most likely eat only what’s on your plate.

If you feel the need to eat and it’s not a “meal”/”snack” time or you just ate.  Give yourself a few minutes, have a drink of water, go for a walk or do an activity.  Then ask yourself, am i still hungry?

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How do you get comfortable with being uncomfortable???

Okay, I get it. NO one likes to change.  Actually, we all have a physical reaction when something changes, good or bad.  We’ve all heard about the effects of stress on our bodies and the damage it can do?  Well what causes stress… CHANGE!  So any common sensed individual would be screaming right now, so WHY WOULD I WANT TO CHANGE?  Because some changes, while they may be difficult for us to go through in the moment will BENEFIT our overall health, both physical and emotional, long-term.  Sometimes we have to step back and think of the bigger picture…

What have you been wanting to change in your life?  There must be something!?  I am always a body in motion.  I am growing, learning and changing every single day.  Some may beg to differ that I will change in my personality, ahem ahem my father (who I live with!) lol, but for the most part, I am willing to adapt!  😛 Do you want to change your body?  Eat better? Give up smoking? Save more money? Get out of debt?  Well… you’re going to have to change something to get to that goal, because right now WHAT YOU’RE DOING ISN’T WORKING.  I don’t mean to CAPS yell at you.  Well, I guess I do, but it’s just so you can understand!  You really have to look internally and think about what the cause is.  Why isn’t what you’re doing to work toward your goal working?  Obviously something isn’t working!  We can all come up with excuses, “Well so and so brought in a cake last Friday, and I had to eat some or they would be offended” or “My friends wanted to go shopping, and I couldn’t just go and not buy something”.  There is always an excuse so that we don’t have to change.  It’s our “scapegoat”.  What we need to stop doing is looking at others and start looking at ourselves.  Because, for the most part, that’s where the stem of the problem is.  And if you aren’t willing to change your habit or behavior, then things will NEVER change, and could even get worse.  For example, bad eating habits… you keep eating poorly or making excuses, you’re going to continue to gain weight or, even worse, could develop a health condition.  If you don’t stop spending money, you’re just going to go further and further into debt.

We have to get a little uncomfortable to get what we want!

 

Now, I do a lot of personal development.  I listen to a lot of podcasts talking about this idea of change, and that we need to change.  We should work  to create new habits, etc.  Some of them get me so fired up, but then they don’t follow through on giving me the tools to do so!  I still love them though.  They’re like the cheerleaders to the tools that I’ve collected in other places!  I’m going to share some tips that have collected and that have worked for me.  They may not work for you… but I know I’m a pretty tough cookie to crack, so if they work for me, they might be worth a shot in giving them a try.  These are pretty amendable, so they could be transitioned for different situations.

·         You have to more than one goal.  I’ve said this before.  You can’t jump a staircase, or a mile.  You have to take it ONE STEP at a time.  What does one step entail?  It’s basic, I know.  It’s putting one foot in front of the other.  But each of those steps is a goal to get you to the end point.  I try to think of it like a staircase.  I start with my main goal.  And then I look at it in pieces, what is it going to take to get me to that goal?  I then think of a mid-point and then work my way out from there.  I take as many steps as I need to succeed.  It’s going to be individual for each of you.  As an example…. My dog needs to lose weight.  Here’s his step chart!

 

o   Lose 15 lbs Weight (2-3 months)

     §  Go for 2 10 minutes walks twice a day (week 4)

·              Cut back dog food by ½ cup (Week 3)

                      o   Go on a 10 minute walk twice a day (Week 2)

                              §  Cut back dog food ¼ cup in morning (week 2)

·                                        Walk fumble to the end of the driveway 3 x day (Week 1)

                                                    o   Cut back dog food ¼ cup in the evening (week 1)

As you can see… I created a step chart, and then I added a timeline for each item! I also set realistic timelines.  I have never had a dog lose weight before, let alone a 200 lb creature.  So… I set my goal time a little extended.  I knew how to manage his food, and I know his walk schedule and that we had to increase his resistance for walks.  Change was uncomfortable for him.  He hates walks.  He was starving and asking for more food.  BUT, I didn’t give into him begging.  It was uncomfortable for him because he was hungry and his schedule was messed up.  It was uncomfortable for me because A. I had to change my schedule to walk him, (as well as my dad) and B. we had to say “no” to him when he was begging.  I kept thinking that I wanted a dog that was going to be around longer… and then it hit me.  My goal wasn’t for him to lose 15 lbs.  It’s bigger than that, it’s for him to be around longer and enjoy his doggy life.

Now, I know this is a silly example.  But it’s easy to understand for the steps.  Does it?  Please let me know

·         YOU HAVE TO step out of your comfort zone.  One of my goals is to meet new people, and make some new friends.  I have to step out of my comfort zone and put myself out there to do this.  I’m not going to attract friends while sitting at my desk, or in my house on the weekends.  I have to constantly talk to strangers.  I KNOW this is something we are told not to do as children.  However, I know my Turbo Fire and Les Mills moves!  I can bring it if I need to! 😛 I also know who I shouldn’t just go up to and strike a conversation with! Lol.  I have also stepped out of my wheelhouse and have gone to a few meetups from meetup.com.  To me, this is the equivalent of blind dating for friends.  It is NOT easy! And it’s hard to do on your own, but I did it!!  And I will continue to attend them!  It’s a great way to meet new people!

·         Visualize.  We can all set action statements.  My goal is… However, I think it’s important to give a reason why.  And I think it’s important to rephrase into as much of a positive statement as possible.  When I succeed, I will… For example…. When I lose weight, I will be able to play with my children outside.  Put a reward to it!  Aren’t we all more apt to do something if there is a reward attached?  Pavlov’s Dog 101!

·           Make a competition for yourself!  Join an accountability group.  Do something that will hold you accountable daily.  This can be as simple as going to the dollar store and getting gold star stickers and putting a sticker on every day that you do some type of fitness!  You will enjoy putting that gold star on that calendar!  Or post your photos on IG.  It will be like a daily goal for you.  I can eat clean because I need to post my meals on Instagram!

·         Don’t stop learning.  Educate yourself as much as you can about behaviors, or things related to your goal.  I have podcasts galore on my iphone and I buy self-help audiobooks and listen to them when I’m driving to and from work.  Most audiobooks come with the book section as well for you to track your notes!

·         Try to surround yourself with people that won’t sabotage your success.  For example, if you’re trying to quit smoking, you won’t stand outside with your normal crowd for 10 minute breaks.  That would be like hanging a mouse in front of a cat!  You want to surround yourself with ‘Like-minded’ individuals.  Join a new club, or a book group!  Or join a walking or running group.  Most running shoe stores actually have running groups that you can join!

·         Manage your surroundings!  Don’t buy unhealthy food.  If it’s in your cabinet, it’s only going to whisper your name.  Eat me, Eiren.  Eat me, Eiren.  It’s like Alice and Wonderland in your cupboards.  I try not to buy anything with sugar.  If I want something, I have to go out and buy it.  And more than likely in that entire process, is the bar of chocolate REALLY that worth it for the gas it’s going to cost for me to go purchase it?  Sometimes yes, but most times no.

·         Set reminders on your phone.  You can even get creative and visual with this one!  For example.  I snack while I make dinner.  Well, most nights I make dinner at the same time.  I can always set up reminders to show myself photos of my “sweaty selfies” or that bikini that I’ve been eyeing to buy.  Those reminders will trigger me to STOP and think about my habit!

·         Invest in your goal.  For example, if you are trying to lose weight.  Give yourself a reward (this goes back to the reward concept) for every day that you ate 100% clean.  This may not be every day because, heck, I eat healthy and I’m not “clean” everyday!  So say for every day you put $5 in a jar.  Well, at the end of the year I bet you’ll have a nice little jar all set up for something to treat yourself to.  Or perhaps enough to go away for the night and celebrate that new little body you’ve been working hard for!

·         Know your triggers.  This is a hard one because you have to put some thought into it.  I’ve heard people say that they mindlessly eat when they watch tv.  Well, instead of eating while watching tv, pick up a new habit.  Learn to knit.  Or brush the dog.  Or get up and jump rope or do some pushups when you get that “food urge”.  Most of us don’t drink enough water through the day, so I turned my mindless eating habit into drinking water.  I’ll get up and go to the kitchen, but instead of filling a bowl, I refill my water bottle.

Always remember that you are more likely to succeed if you plan for your “future” self.  These may seem like a lot of steps and a lot of work to do upfront.  However, if you don’t make time and change, then you’ll never change!  And if you don’t change… you don’t succeed.

What’s the worst that can happen?  At least if you TRY, then you are setting the wheels into motion and YOU ARE ALREADY CHANGING AND GROWING.  You aren’t standing still any longer!!

I hope this rambling , long post made some sense!

Oxo

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What are some changes that you have struggled with before?

What are some tips that have worked for you to create new habits and grow?

What are some of your favorite personal development books that have helped you?

Happy New Year rung in with a little champs salsa!

Happy Happy Happy New Year!! (and I have to say, a HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY TWIN SISSY!)  We turned the BIG 3-0 yesterday. Yikes! hehe!

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I hope all of you had a safe and wonderful evening.  I what I wish, even more, is for a wonderful 2013 for you.  I was watching Piers Morgan the other morning and he had Pastor Rick Warren on.  Pastor Rick made a profound statement. Piers had asked him about the holidays and people who have had something bad happen.  Pastor Rick said that the easiest way to get over a bad memory surrounded by a holiday is to create a new positive memory.  I think that statement can be shifted beyond a holiday, and put onto the New Year.

New Year’s are blank slates.  We get to start anew.  No, we don’t erase our pasts, or forget the people that hurt us, struggles we had, or the ones we lost.  We will always carry those things in our hearts.  BUT, the important thing is to move beyond them.  Don’t let them control you, or those situations dictate your life.  You are the one that holds the key to your body, mind and soul.  Yes, I believe we have a bigger power who knows our master plan, BUT, we need to drive the car!  Without us driving it, we will stay in idle, neutral on a flat land.

A beautiful Tone it Up girl from IG, Stephytonesitup posted this photo yesterday and it was such a profound quote.

Write your next chapter… I am….

Well, okay now to my lil creation!  I think this is the first recipe i’ve come up with in a long time.  (i usually get into a habit and eat the same things day after day..)
I have the #elf4health challenge and Elle and Lindsay to thank for this one.  I was invited by my beautiful BFF and her hubby to spend New Years with them.  I wanted to make something that was healthy, festive, fun and something I could eat!  There are so few items on that list!

I came up with….

Watermelon Cranberry Champs Salsa!

2-3 cups chopped watermelon (seedless)1 c cranberries that I put in the Magic Bullet to chop
2-3 T jalapeno (diced, no seeds)
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup champagne
2 T lime juice
diced avocado (not shown)

Super easy! Mix!  Add the avocado at the end and serve!

Happy New Year!

Make 2013 Amazing!

oxo

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Happy Holidays… and a wish…

I just wanted to take a brief moment this morning and wish everyone a very Happy Holiday season… It’s the end of the year which sort of makes me reflect back for all of the things i love and am thankful for in 2012…

They are as follows.

**I am so amazingly grateful for a supportive and loving father.  He has taken over a role that my mother held (and will always hold) as not only a parent, but a best friend.  He has supported me in my crazy life decisions this past year.  Even as scary and outlandish as they sounded.  A great dad knows when to encourage and challenge you, and even if you don’t do what he thinks is best… always stands behind you with love and a hug to help if you fall.

** I am so thankful for my sissy.  She is my other half.  We have grown A LOT, and as twins that’s not an easy thing.  You are always used to the way things used to be for 28 years.  Then you grow apart, and start new, separate lives.  I am thankful to know that even 3000 miles away she is still my twin.  Through thick and thin, bickers, tears and laughs she will always be my other half.

**I am beyond lucky for my best friends.  We have a very special relationship.  Maybe some of you can relate?  We spent 4 years of college together.  We have our own lives now, but we always come back together, like we never left.  They have been there for me, picked me up when i’m down, and taught me how to laugh again…. I love you girls!!!

PS, addendum to this one… i am grateful for being a pseudo-auntiE too!! Merry Christmas M, N and B!! I know Santa will be good to you all!!!! I can’t wait to watch you all grow up too!

**This one may sound weird, but i CANNOT thank my social media family enough!!  I feel like I have gotten to know so many people through the Tone it Up, #Elf4health, Fitness and SweatPink community on IG, twitter and facebook.  It is so encouraging to finally see women who support one another!!!  I also still can’t believe that Karena from Tone It Up called me!!  What a dork I was on the phone!! LOL!  Gobsmacked and flustered in my celebrity nerves! hehe!

**Thankful for a new job!!!!  SO excited that one is happening! Phew… was getting nervous there for a moment!

**I’m proud of myself for putting myself out there in the community! I can’t wait to start to meet new people and create new relationships around me. Happy people are social.  I have been a hermit for too long!

**While my experience in NY was one that I will certainly take as a stepping stone, I can whole heartily say that I am so blessed to have gotten to know such an amazing group of people.  I think I have a cheerleading squad behind me for life!  They are selfless people who have an amazing gift that they not only shared with the patients that we worked with, but me as a person.

Lastly, I am thankful for the memories… This is a different kind of year for my family as we have left behind a huge physical piece of my mother… our house.  But a house is just a house, 4 walls.  It’s the people inside of it that make it a home.  I have the memories that will lead me through and help to remind me what the holidays are all about…  Love, hugs, memories, laughs (maybe some fights if you talk politics, hehe), but really, it’s just about being together!!

Happy Holidays….

What will 2013 bring to be thankful for????

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What are you most thankful for in 2012?

What is something you would like to accomplish in 2013?

#elf4health Update!!

 

 

So things have been busy the last week with the #elf4health challenge!! Elle and Lindsay have done an amazing job hosting this challenge.  And I think i read online that the number of participants is up to 800!! SHOCK!! WHAT!! Talk about leader! oxo!

I have loved doing this challenge to hold myself accountable! I have also loved getting to know my Elf! Alexandra from Loopy for Fruit! (LOVE THE NAME!) She is an amazingly bright young woman, who in my opinion, has an amazing future in front of her! You know when you can read someone through an email?  She exudes energy and just a solid ❤ of gold!  🙂 I am so lucky to have gotten to meet her through this challenge and I have a feeling we will stay in touch post!  At least i hope so! 🙂

So here’s my update so far!!  The first days of #elf4health!

Day 1: Meatless Monday.  Mine was my gigunda salad! Lots of veggies and topped with tahini! My only source of animal protein that day was egg whites.

Day 2: Write a note to a friend… (You saw my previous post about this one)

Day 3: Share a Fitness Routine! I shared Tone It Up’s #Holidayhottie routine!! love this one!!  I was so excited too because I got challenger of the day!!!

Day 4: Take a moment to reflect and meditate.  I love to just sit with the Fumbs during quiet moments.  There is something so soothing about the presence of an animal!

Day 5: A day of Rainbow Eats!!  I actually loved this day.  My fav color to eat is orange! aka Squash!  I ate purple tahini coleslaw, my big squash bowl, and even threw in some of this beautiful pepper into a salad!  Talk about rainbow vegg!

The weekend challenge was to get organized and donate some clothes!  I JUST cleaned out  my stuff before moving here!  So unfortunately, i didn’t have much to donate.  I saw a local pet shelter was taking donations, so we took advantage of that.  I do have a question about shoes?  Anyone have any good recommendations for an alternative to a rack?? My shoes are clumped up into boxes right now!  Ugh being a girl and having too many choices in the footwear.  #girlproblems! 😛

This week!!  Day 7: Fiber Day!!!  I loved this challenge because i am a fiber queen! Each of my meals totaled over 20 grams a meal!! Prob because i throw a little squash into everything!

Day 8! Yesterday, was make your own dressing!  I took Kasey‘s (Powercakes) Tahini nooch sauce and threw in some changes.  I added Apple Cider Vinegar, pumpkin, a dash of coconut aminos, and spiced paprika!  I actually put in a little too much ACV in mine, but there’s always room for improvement.  And well, it was just good for the digestion! 🙂

Today’s challenge was all about sharing.  Now I consider myself a champion of sharing.  Heck, I shared a mama’s very tiny belly with my beautiful sissy for 9 months!! 😛  I made a Dashing Dish Peanut Flour Micro muffin this am and then just split half with Big Steve.  He’s really lure him onto the healthy boat, even if it kills me!

Are you taking part in the #elf4health challenge?

What is your favorite day so far???

#beTRUEtoYOU Challenge

Okay, so between #holidayhottie and #elf4health, I am a challenge queen! 😛

And i’m not done yet…

This is an amazing challenge that’s being done by Kasey, at Powercakes!  If you follow my IG, you know that i love to test her recipes as i’m gluten/dairy free an mostly vegetarian.  She has a great combo of delicious flavors, and things that, on my own, I would have never thought of!

Well, Kasey is doing an amazing Challenge called #beTRUEtoYOU !

Kasey has a similar frame of reference as I do… like snowflakes (PS it snowed in Maine today for the first time! yah! :P), we are all different.  And instead of trying to conform to a trend, or do something someone else has done, we should embrace ourselves!  That can mean our bodies, our diet, fitness, personality traits (i’m quirky! :P), etc… You name it.  #beTRUEtoYOU!

In this challenge she asks… how are you true to yourself?

Wow, what a loaded question for me!!  If you’ve read my past blog posts you will know, that it took me a LONG time to find out who I am and be okay with that.  After struggling with disordered eating, the loss of my mom, my stupid health issues…It has been really difficult to find out and remember who I am, and what makes me happy!  I think in those struggles you almost lose a part of yourself.  It takes some serious self-reflection to come back to life.  I mean you’re always breathing, but not really living.  Sort of floating through life.

I think the BEST image that I have as proof for the #beTRUEtoYOU challenge has to be a photo I took this past summer.  It was a trip I took to Cape Cod, and I remember being out on the beach, by myself, at Sunrise.  I used to live on Cape Cod and my BEST thinking moments were at the beach.  I was out in West Dennis alone on the beach, and of course I was playing around. I leaned my lovely iphone on a lifeguard stand and took some jumping photos.  Yes, they are silly (my personality again!), but I also love them because this was the exact trip and moment that I decided I was going to STOP holding myself back.  Two years ago, I moved to a place that I didn’t know anyone, and even now, still barely knew anyone. I was ready to get my life started.  This was the morning I decided I was going to move.  I was going to stop saying it, and do it!  AND I did!!
1 month later, i put my notice into work, and a month and a half after that… Today, here i am!  Sitting in my house in Maine!  Yes, i still have struggles ahead, ie finding a job!  BUT, as I said in a post a few weeks ago… “dear happiness… i’ve missed you, welcome home”.  The happiness far outweighs the struggles ahead.

If you have a little faith, it can go a long way… Proof that everything happens for a reason.

I also want to just reiterate what i’ve said before in posts, and what Kasey is talking about in regards to everyone being different.  I am living proof of this.  I am an identical twin.  IDENTICAL.  We share the exact same DNA.  Our adult teeth even grew in the EXACT SAME WAY!  (yah, we even confused the orthodontist! Hehe).

  But, my sister and I are completely different in our adult lives.  We have VERY different body types. Where she can eat what she wants, I have gluten/dairy intolerance. You can’t compare yourself to someone else, or try to be like them.  Stop comparing, and just be the BEST YOU!  Find out what makes you tick, what makes you happy, who you are… and embrace it.  I am an odd duck, i have a quirky sense of humor, i have a dog that outweighs me for heavens sake!  I am okay with all of that.  Don’t get me wrong, it took me a LONG time to be okay with it, but i finally am!  And you should be too… because in the end, you’ll feel so much butter on the inside, and you’ll exude that confidence on the outside.  And confidence, my dears, is sooooo much more attractive than any size on a label!

oxo!

Do you compare yourself to other people? 

What is your favorite thing about yourself! (physical, personality..)?