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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It’s a New Year!!

if not now, when

I can’t believe how much time has past since I’ve lost wrote a blog post. It’s crazy how the time just seems to zip by. I kept wanting too, but it just didn’t feel right to be one of those bloggers that only occasionally and randomly post things. I notice for me want to follow someones blog, I want someone who is consistent. Your basically following there life and when they just stop blogging all of sudden, you begin to wonder what happened to them and it gets annoying to check the blog and still see the same thing you read last month.

So guys.. new years resolution is to bring this blog back into ACTION! And to actually hopefully succeed past my original goals of having a blog. I want to use this blog has a way to reach people and share my passions with food and fitness and health. I hope to inspire others and answer questions. I want to show you that I’m human and I’m not always healthy and things come up and that doesn’t mean you just shut down your blog and not share those things.

So here is to a new year, a new blog and hopefully providing you with a little bit of joy, laughter and information along the way!

Lets start by sharing last years accomplishments in a nut shell.

  • I completed 2 half marathons – one in napa valley and one in seattle
  • I completed 1 full marathon – NYC BABY! Finally after 2 years of dedication, I did it!
  • I traveled to Kauai, Maui, Vegas, Napa Valley and New York City
  • I ran a lot, laughed a lot, cried some, overcame injuries, and learned a lot

I’m sure there is more that happened last year, but frankly I can’t remember and I’m just ready to move forward into this new year!

This year my focus is finding the balance in life. Focusing more on ME and what my loves and passions are. So let’s start by listing them out.

Here are my goals:

  • build an even stronger fitness foundation
  • stay focused and motivated to do more and be more at work
  • eating clean
  • finding the balance in a having a healthy lifestyle
  • growing more in my faith
  • growing more in love with myself and the people in my life
  • to learn something new this year
  • to try something new this year
  • to run more for fun
  • to run somewhere different or new

To start accomplishing these goals I have joined a crossfit gym and am currently taking part in a 60 day fitness/health challenge with a friend who just started her business with beachbody. The challenge is keeping me honest and helping me eat better. I want to see true results this year. I don’t want to yo-yo back in forth between diets or cleanses or eating strict. I want to truly make a lifestyle change that just happens because it’s who I am. We are 9 days in to the new year and I feel like I’ve made a good start.

I think you find that I’ll be talking quite bit about crossfit and the paleo lifestyle. These two seem to go hand in hand, kind of like peanut butter and jelly and it really isn’t just a “fab” or something people do because they think it’s “healthy”. It’s the real deal and I hope over time and through my blog post I can share the facts and the reasons why these two things are things to fall in love with.

Don’t worry I’ll still talk a lot about running I’m sure.. Just hit a hiatus with running since NYC Marathon and I’m trying to get back into, just seeming to have a hard time finding the time and the motivation. But my love for running has not gone away and It will become more of a focus for me in the near future.

It starts with food..

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The day after labor day last year is when I began the Whole30 program for the first time. I was new to the whole paleo thing. Going from an intense 15 day juice cleanse in December to a mostly vegetarian diet for the 8 months after with constant roller coaster of ups and downs with my battle with food. I was working out a lot, running and still not seeing the results I wanted. Sure I was lean, but were was the muscle and tone from 8 months of running and lifting?! The whole30 opened my eyes to food in a way i’d never thought about it before. Watching and feeling my body transform from eating clean whole foods for 30 days was one of the most rewarding and beneficial things I’ve ever done for myself. So fast forward 8 months later and I’ve maintained a mostly paleo diet. Doing the whole30 changed the way I thought about food and made it more natural to just cook whole clean foods, but the sugar demon is still there, the roller coaster of good food/bad food decisions are still at war and I can feel when my body is not burning fuel from fat, but from the nasty sugars that I just “had” to have that day.

I decided it was time to do the whole30 program again. Remind myself why I choose paleo over sandwiches or cookies and I thought it would also be good to re-read “It Starts With Food” since I’m more familiar and can relate more now then when I first read it. I love Dallas and Melissa Hartwig and I think there book and there program is such a life-changing experience. It really is true what a difference eating whole foods can do to you. As I was sitting on the bus on my way home, reading the book, I thought for one second what the bus would feel like if every single person on the bus was doing the whole30 program together and what a difference the bus ride home would be. I laughed and pushed the thought away and got back to the book.

So this week I’m doing what I’m calling the pre-season or warm up. Since for every great sport or run, in order to succeed and have a good year, you need to warm up, practice and a test run. I’m reading the book as a part of my warm-up, stocking my pantry with only whole30 approved foods, meal planning for the weeks to come, checking my schedule and making sure not to schedule anything that involves non-whole30 approved activities and just simply getting my mind and body ready for the challenge. So there isn’t any excuse to fail. I’m also test running, by doing my absolute best to eat 100% paleo. I made it all of Monday and failed today by eating 2 small bites of a oatmeal-cranberry raisin cookie that a co-worker had. And yes it was delicious, but in the end not worth it-but a great reminder for the next time my brain decides it thinks a cookie is a good idea. I will begin the whole30 program officially next Tuesday, June 28th.

I’m excited to see the changes both mentally and physically and see how it improves my fitness and running as I approach the beginning of my marathon training and my 2nd half marathon of the year.

Whole30 is a great program with really high success rates. I highly recommend you check it out and join me on this challenge. I will give weekly updates on how I’m doing and try and remember to post new recipes that I try along the way.

Paleo Strawberry & Spinach Salad Recipe!

What a crazy week I’ve had so far! I can’t believe tomorrow is already Friday. It’s been a good week for my workouts and running. I’ve been able to run more miles this week and try some new workouts so it’s been a lot of fun.

I was able to set a new PR during last night’s track work out running 4 miles at 7:47 pace! I was dying and don’t think I could keep that up, but it was sure fun to push myself and get a good workout in.

The evenings have been really nice here so I’ve been wanting to stick to only using my BBQ and cooking light along with it. Last night I grilled a steak and paired with it a lovely spinach and strawberry salad. It ended up being one of those salads that is just so good I had to share it with you guys.

Strawberry & Spinach Salad

Strawberry & Spinach Salad

Strawberry & Spinach Salad with apple cider-dijon vinaigrette
1 bunch spinach
4-6 cut strawberries
1/2 avocado, sliced
1/2 sliced and grilled red onion
small handful of toasted sliced almonds
For the Dressing…whisk or blend the following ingredients and drizzle over salad
1/4 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
salt & pepper

 

I’m planning on making it again tonight, but adding a little cooked bacon as my protein.

Today’s workout was a circuit of hips, core, and shoulders. It was a quick and fun 45 min work out and was a perfect cross-training day. Tomorrow is an easy 3 mile run with 150 squats for day 17 of the 30 day challenge! I’m running Saturday and am doing The Color Run 5k on Sunday so wanted to keep tomorrow light since I won’t have a dedicated rest day this week.

Track Work Out, Qualifying for Boston?, Core Circuit.

I had my first track work out last night and I definitely felt like the new kid in school. It’s funny what a small world the running community can be. I ended up recognizing a handful of the people from just seeing them at races. We had to alter the workout because there was a soccer game at 6:30 and we needed to be off the track. So we did a 2 x 1 mile splits with a 400m recovery run in between and a 800m recovery run after. My first split I did in 7:20 and my second split I did in 7:01. Since I wasn’t totally sure what we were doing when we started I stayed with a group of ladies for the first split so I could make sure I was doing the right thing. Once I figured it out I did the 2nd one a little faster, only issue is that I didn’t count my laps right on the 2nd mile and I sprinted to the finish just to learn that I still had one more lap to go. I tried to keep the same sprint, but I think I lost it a little. I loved the track work out though and can tell what a difference it’s going to have on my training this year and tackling the NYC Marathon.

I officially registered for the NYC Marathon today. Even though I’ve known I was going to run it since it was cancelled last year, going through the registration put it in perspective and made it seem more real. I was just looking at my training plan for from last year and can’t believe I started training on May 28th! Since I’ve already been running I don’t think I’ll start actually training until after the Rock N Roll half on June 22nd. This year I put a goal time of 3:35:00. Coincident that is the time to qualifying time for 2014 Boston? No! but not sure it’s realistic yet either. It’s definitely a fun goal to try for though.

Normally I run on Thursdays, but after yesterday’s morning strength training and the track work out last night I decided to keep it light today and my body was thankful. I focused on my core today and made sure to sneak in the 100 squats for day 9 of the 30 day squat challenge.

Core & Squat Circuit

Core & Squat Circuit

Core & Squat Circuit
4 sets of 25 each
1. 50lb barbell squat
2a. Right Side Oblique Crunch, holding 15lb dumbbell
2b. Left Side Oblique Crunch, holding 15lb dumbbell
3. Back Extensions, holding 25lb plate
4. 1 min plank, balancing on each leg for 15 sec each during the min and then hold for 30

TGTIF (thank goodness tomorrow is friday) 🙂