Love + Health = Happiness

I can’t believe we are already into the 3rd week of January. It doesn’t help that I spent almost the first 2 whole weeks sicker than a dog. That expression is weird, cause my dog is never sick so I’m not even sure what it means.. but yea starting the new year off sick is no fun! I’m happy to say that I finally feel like I’ve got 100% of my energy back. I feel happy and alive again!

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Today I want to talk a little about loving yourself and being healthy! I have found in recent months that making sure you truly love yourself is how you will find the ultimate happiness. What makes me love myself is by working out and eating healthy. Doing both of those things makes me feel good and when I feel good I am happy! When I’m happy and have positive energy then I notice that work gets easier and the people in my life seem to be happier and drive off my energy. This just motivates me more. I want to lead my example so those closes to me can be positively effected by my happiness.

Here are few tips to live a healthier, happier lifestyle:

  • create a workout routine and stick with it
  • never plan more than a week out in advance, take your goals just one week at time
  • plan your meals every week, prep ahead of time so your less likely to eat out when your in a hurry
  • pack your own lunches
  • cut the negativity
  • follow people that inspire you to be a better you

My goals for the week are to workout every day with an active recovery day on sunday and to drink more water. I decided I wanted to try and go to crossfit all 5 days of the work week. I’m going skiing on Saturday so that will be my workout for Saturday and for my active recovery on Sunday I plan to either go to hot yoga or take my dog on a walk. Maybe both depending on how sore I am from my first day up skiing this year. My schedule has been all over the place this week, but I have managed to make it to crossfit both monday and tuesday and have mapped out the rest of my week so I can make sure to fit in a class each day. Now I just have to remember to drink more water! That seems to be a harder task, but I’m finding creative ways to remind myself to drink more water and I’ve started out every morning with drinking a full glass of water before I do anything else.

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One More Week.

My life has been busy busy busy. The days and months just skip by without me even noticing. I’ll think I just finishing working on a project and see that the last time it was opened was 2 weeks ago. I swear it was just march and I blinked and we are half way through April.

Work is still going great. Been working on all of the spring changes for the restaurants along with an opening of a new restaurant and and a few other projects. I’ve been consistent with my workouts and runs and my diet has been okay, but could be much better.

I love the spring for so many reasons, but mainly because all my favorite produce comes back in season and just gets better through the summer. And it’s time to focus on good produce and get ready for bikini season. 🙂

This weekend I’ll be in napa valley to run my first half marathon of the year. I’m ready to start racing again and I’m hoping it will provide some much needed motivation to get kick start my running season. I haven’t ran more than 10 miles since I completely the marathon back in November and I’m ready to start logging some more miles!

Back when I started this blog, I was juicing a lot and when I learned about paleo, juicing was put on the back burner, but I see the benefits in both juicing and eating whole foods so I’d like to incorporate both into my spring diet.

So here is today’s juice recipe:

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Fruity Greens
1/2 pineapple
1/2 sweet potato
2 apples
2 celery
1/2 cucumber
1 bunch Italian kale (provides the best juice)
1 handful strawberries

It made 28oz of juice and I drank it along with my paleo-friendly steak, eggs, & sweet potato hash. Hash is a great way to eat left overs for breakfast. And a great post work out meal if you workout in the mornings.

I hope to most more often. I hope not to blink and have another month go by. It is after all the season to eat clean, train mean, and live lean.

Lets enjoy spring together!

**Update** I wrote this post this morning and am just not getting around to posting it. I wrote it before the terror attacks on the Boston Marathon. As a fellow runner, my heart goes out to all of those affected by the explosions and all those who trained so hard to have it cut short at the end. I can only imagine how awful and scary that must have been. Having run a marathon before, I know how emotionally and physically tired you are as you near the finish line and too have something as horrific as the explosions interrupt is seriously horrible to even think about. I’m praying for the families who lost love ones, for the injured runners and spectators, and for all marathon runners who were affected by this, including those not in Boston. 

Spring running

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I’m excited that its day light savings this weekend that means we are that much closer to spring! Warmer weather, longer days, less rain (hopefully). It also means time to start planning my spring races and to figure out my training programs. I’m excited to announce that I’ve signed up for my first half marathon of for the year in Napa Valley, California! I’ve only been to Napa once and we were just driving through on our way somewhere else, so I’m so excited to stay for a few days and enjoy all of what wine country has to offer.

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The half is on April 21st, so I’ve put together my training program for this first race. This race I just want to have fun with and enjoy every mile and use this race as the starting point for the rest of the season and to set my PR for my next half and eventually figure out my pace for the NYC marathon later this year.

I’m in my 2nd week of training so far and it’s been going well. I haven’t been able to lift as much as I’ve been getting tired from the runs, but hoping by next week I’ll be able to balance out my lifting and running schedule. I also have an opportunity to lift with a girlfriend of mine a few days a week so I will probably have to alternate my training schedule a little.

First week into the 14 day cleanse and it’s been going good. Definitely on track with how it said it would be. I have found that I’m more hungry throughout the day, but I think that could be a little from the running as well.

It’s supposed to be nice here this weekend so I’m hoping to enjoy my saturday run and hopefully some outdoor fun with my pup.

Where does the time go?

Balloons we sent to Sami

Balloons we sent to Sami.

Yesterday marked the 10th anniversary of when my sister left this world and went to heaven to watch over our family. I can not believe it’s been 10 years. Grief is a mysterious thing you go through when you lose someone. The things your mind decides to remember and forget I will never understand. We decided in her memory to go through old photo albums and just try and remember her the way we knew her. I can’t believe how much my childhood I’ve blocked out. It seems that I only can remember the days leading up to her death and everything after. Looking at the pictures of us playing as little kids, holding hands, hugging and even some sneaking shots my mom took of me cheering her on while she was swimming or playing softball made my heart heavy with both happy and sad thoughts. The happiness came from knowing from being able to see how close we were and how much fun we had as little girls, but the sadness came from realizing that I don’t remember a lot of those times and only have pictures to know that they happened. I wish my memory served me better and I didn’t have the view of losing her so fresh in my mind. I want the memories of our childhood together to burn through the memories of my final days with her. Sami was such a wonderful, caring, perfect little sister and looking at those pictures yesterday reminded me how much I cared about her and how I would have done anything for her. A sister bond is unlike anything else. I sure do miss her and wonder what she would like if she was here today, but I take comfort in knowing that she has helped shape the person I am today and that I get to have a beautiful sweet guardian angel watching over me everyday.

A little update with other things going on. I just started Week 3 of Jamie Eason’s LiveFit Program and I’m feeling really good. The workouts are tougher this week and I’m excited for the challenge. I realized this morning that I need to challenge myself a little more with adding more weight and not being able to get through all my reps. I’m going to try that tomorrow and see if I notice a difference. I’m nervous this week has 2 days of legs and both are pretty intense leg days. I’m hoping to do add in a couple runs this week, but we’ll see how my legs are holding up.

Eating Clean has been going pretty well, definitely harder on the weekends and I find myself being a little more relaxed on the weekends. It’s all about finding the healthy balance. The weekend went by too fast and I have a feeling this week is going to go by pretty fast as well.

Happy Monday! I hope you guys are able to find your motivation to get back in the gym and continue to eat clean and train mean!

Monday Fitness, Meal Planning and some Paleo eats..

Today was day 1 of the Jamie Eason’s LiveFit Program and I woke up at 5:15am ready to go! Finally mentally and physically back at it. It was a great workout and I hope the rest of the week mirrors today. I added a little cardio and some abs to her day 1 chest and tricep work out.

Here is what Monday’s workout looked like:

Chest & Triceps – 3 sets of 12 reps

  • Wide Pushups
  • Barbell Bench Press
  • Dumbbell Flys
  • Narrow Pushups
  • Overhead Tricep extensions
  • Cable Tricep Pushdowns

Abs – 2 sets of 50 reps

  • Vertical Crunch
  • Bike Crunch
  • Reg Crunches
  • 1 set of 50: vertical knee raises
Meal Planning: All the groceries I got for the week for $86!

Meal Planning: All the groceries I got for the week for $86!

When you want to eat clean, the #1 thing you need to do to guarantee success is meal planning. I know everyone has there way of doing it, but I thought I’d share mine. I put together what I call a master grocery list, separated out by 3 categories: Fruits/Vegetables, Proteins, and Pantry. I then between looking at blogs for recipes, checking out my saved bookmarks, looking in cookbooks and/or just knowing what I want to make or sounds good I put everything on the list that I’ll want to get. The next step takes a little work. I then check my schedule and see when how often I’ll be able to cook or will need to cook ahead and then plan on what meals I want to make. This week I decided on 3 dinners, plus breakfast. I knew that the 3 dinners planned would produce leftovers that I could eat for lunch the next day. After I figured out what I wanted to cook I looked over the ingredients needed and narrowed down my grocery list for those items. It gets easier the more you do it and the more meals you have on your list of go too. I like to stock up on my pantry ingredients when I have a little extra money that way when I’m meal planning all I’m needing to buy is the vegetables and proteins. Things that I think are must to have in your pantry: coconut oil, coconut milk, olive oil, dried spices, seasonings, chicken broth, larabars and almonds. The best news is that my meal planning actually paid off this week. I had a budget of $100 to spend on groceries for the week and I was able to get everything I needed for $86! Meal Planning does work if you allow enough time for the planning process.

For lunch today, I was running low on everything as I was getting ready to go to the store, but I know better than to go to the grocery store hungry so I grabbed a chicken thigh I was saving for dinner this week and the little bit of broccoli I had left and I ended up making the most delicious quick lunch ever. If you want something quick for lunch or dinner or after a work out I suggest you try my Sautéed Balsamic Chicken and Broccoli.

Balsamic Chicken and Broccoli: Quick Delicious Lunch

Balsamic Chicken and Broccoli: Quick Delicious Lunch

Sautéed Balsamic Chicken and Broccoli
1 Chicken Thigh – Cut into bite size pieces
2 garlic cloves – Chopped
1 large broccoli bunch – cut into florets
Garlic Powder
Chile Flake
Salt & Pepper
Sriracha
Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar

 

 

 

 

 

Here is what I did: Heat enough olive oil to coat my cast iron skillet, add chicken and cook until starting to turn white, add broccoli, garlic powder, chile flake, salt and pepper and cook until chicken is completely cooked and broccoli is tender. Add a little squeeze of sriracha and a splash of balsamic and stir pan until chicken is well coated in balsamic. Eat up! *note: I do not measure my seasonings ever, just eyeball and add enough to add flavor but not overpower. This meal took about 15 mins all said and done and was delicious!

Spaghetti Squash, Kale, Sausage Casserole: Picture doesn't do this delicious meal justice.

Spaghetti Squash, Kale, Sausage Casserole: Picture doesn’t do this delicious meal justice.

Tonight for dinner, I decided to try paleoOMG’s Sqaghetti Squash, Sausage and Kale Casserole. It was absolutely delicious! I changed up the seasoning a little. Instead of tarragon, I chose to use thyme and fennel salt. Her recipes are always so good and this one is no different. The picture doesn’t do it justice, the flavors were awesome!