Marc Megna Phase 2

Hey Guys!

I am on my 4th week of the Marc Megna Amp Trainer and have been loving it!! If you read my last update during the 1st Phase you’ll know that I was in a total fitness rut and need a boost and this 8 week trainer was a welcome change.

During the phase 1 I did 3 days of total body lifting days and 2 steady state cardio days & it was a fun change to my previous 5 day split lifting schedule. Phase 2 is a little different in its set up, I’m still doing 3 days of total body lifting but now its 3 days of different cardio breakdowns.

Marc Megna Phase 2

The total body days this round went from 4 sets of 5reps (for most lifts) to 4 sets of 8 reps. So my focus switched from hitting max weight & sometimes failing during my 4th set. To really focusing on form during each lift and making sure that I could hit 8 reps (sometimes 6, dang bench press) with excellent form at a challenging weight.

Marc Megna Phase 2 Marc Megna Phase 2

I also love that there is 1 primarily bodyweight workout during the total body days. I sometimes have  difficulty balancing lifting and bodyweight exercises but know the importance of bodyweight exercises because they are super important for maintaining healthy joint alignment and stabilization. I also SERIOUSLY felt those single leg deadlifts, one of my favorite exercises that I do not do enough!

Marc Megna Phase 2

The cardio days are a welcome change to my routine as well. I loved phase 1 steady state cardio and getting to do some personal development reading when on the elliptical. Phase 2 brought a change to the cardio routine and I kind of love it! Lets be real…. I am terrible at motivating myself to do cardio, especially indoor cardio, so having a program “force” me to do the cardio is absolutely wonderful!

Marc Megna Phase 2

During this phase there is 1 day of “Alactic Aerobic Intervals” which is basically 10 seconds of all out work and 50 seconds of recovery/rest for 16 & 18 minutes (depending on the week). I’ve done two of these workouts so far, one on the treadmill & one on the rowing machine. For both of these workouts I upped the work period to 15 seconds and then did an active recovery rather than a straight rest because lets be real, I wouldn’t get back on the treadmill 😉

Marc Megna Phase 2

The other two days of cardio includes a steady state session & then a “Cardiac Power” session. The cardiac power session is a prolonged work/recovery interval session. Doing 2 minutes of hard-but-manageable-work and 4 minutes of active-recovery, 6 times for a 36minute workout. Ive done this once and oh man was it hard! Its pretty sad to say that 2 minutes of hard running is a serious challenge but thats my current reality. I pushed myself through the workout which is EXACTLY why I am doing this program to push myself outside of my comfort zone and previous “gym box”.

I am excited for Phase 3 & 4 because I am truly loving this program and can’t wait to see the results of these 8 weeks.

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Getting Back on Track

Hey Guys!

With all of the traveling and weekends away this fall I’ve been feeling really off when it comes to the gym and the food that I’ve been putting in my body. I think everyone goes through periods of time when food and fitness become a chore rather than a pleasure and thats where I am suck right now.

image source @keri_lynn_badach on Instagram

I have been struggling with wanting to love my workouts and have been eating the same boring food for months and while they are healthy they don’t really satisfy us so often I find that we go out to grab “a snack” or opt out of eating at home and grab takeout or a sandwich. All of this leads to a vicious circle of being upset and angry with myself and playing that dreaded comparison game.

image source @keri_lynn_badach on Instagram

A few weeks ago I talked about how I was going to get back to GPP as I really do love the programming and the workouts, I had a great week of workouts following the programming and making them work but then we went on vacation and didn’t workout (but we walked a lot) and then I got sick. So here I am almost 4 weeks later feeling the same as I did then.

WELP its time to recommit and get focused finding my inner happiness which I know can come from a good workout and positive talking.

Image source @keri_lynn_badach on Instagram

I was chatting with my friend Keri about this on Friday when I was feeling less than motivated to get my sweat on at the gym. She reminded me that I can never achieve the goals that I have in my head if I can’t find inner happiness first. Its one thing for someone else to tell you that you’re strong, fit and amazing and its another thing to FEEL those feelings yourself.

Since my seriously cleansing chat with Keri I decided to give up on this negative “i can’t” “I’m not” “i wish” talk that I kept finding myself going to and start to DO the things that make me happy.

image source @keri_lynn_badach on Instagram

SO I getting back on track by cleaning up my diet & cleaning up my attitude at the gym. Even if my workouts still struggle, because a rut sometimes is just a rut, I am going to COMMIT to getting to the gym & doing the best that I can during the rest of the hours of the day.

I challenge you to spread POSITIVE talk to yourself and remember that YOU are AMAZING no matter what the social media pressure wants to tell you, no matter what that reflection in the mirror or the amount of weight on the stack shows, YOU are here doing the BEST that you can and ROCKING IT!

Image Source @keri_lynn_badach on Instagram

Also if you are still in need of some positive talking and help in finding the best healthy way for you, check out Keri’s website & her new blog, she is a certified holistic health coach and a seriously amazing person with the best spirit and energy possible!

With Love & Positivity,

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Cue Rant

hi guys,

I wasn’t planning on posting today but something that happened last night at the gym prompted this post and well I just couldn’t contain myself.

So as a physical therapist & being married to a gym rat who is meticulous about form I have come to be a BIT anal about form and more often than not find my self cringing at people in the gym. I usually contain myself from giving glares, saying something or whispering to Brent about the person.

But sometimes it’s JUST.TO.BAD. and I feel that it’s my professional obligation to help the poor soul out. I mean my biggest fear, and the biggest fear of so many others, is that I am doing something that I think is right completely wrong & look a foul so I would hope someone would politely give me a hand, rather than staring like a jerk.

Last night was a case of the latter. Brent and I were half way through our chest workout when this young kid started to do single arm rows at the bench next to us. I first noticed him because he was a pretty small kid and pretty far down the dumbbell weight rack so I was impressed….

Then I saw his first pull, all lower back rotation & no upper back pull, a disaster in the making. But it didn’t stop there, he continued to heave the dumbbell up with his shoulders and traps then finish the movement with a lower back twist and hike. He followed these spectacular rows with some standing “skull crushers” at wayyy too much weight where I was pretty sure if he continued to do them he would most definitely tear his arms right out of the socket.

After about 3 rounds of this cringe worthy exercise routine & a couple visits from his friend, who I can only assume was telling him how to correct his form, the guy on the bench next to us told the kid “hey lower your weight and do the movement correctly” to which the kid said “this is how we train

At this point Brent jumped in and said “he’s right buddy, if you lower the weight you’ll be able to perform the lift properly” the kid scoffed at this as well & we both said “seriously you’re going to hurt yourself if you don’t lower your weight!”

Then the kid said the kicker… “Dude I’m 15!”

Ah Ha! This made my skin crawl! Not that kids shouldn’t be in the weight room, because I really advocate that and think that SAFE lifting is great for development, muscular growth, bone & joint health, along with a great confidence booster!

BUT, and this is a big BUT, if you are lifting incorrectly & aren’t going to take advice from others around you who are genuinely trying to help you out than you have no business in the weightroom.

If you are in the weightroom OWN it and if someone tries to give you tips listen. If you need tips reach out and I’d be happy to help!
Okay end rant!

I hope you all have a WONDERFUL Tuesday!

A Weekend Workout!

This 20minute treadmill workout will work up a sweat &
you’ll burn tons of calories without running a step!

Happy Monday Friends!

This was the last weekend for a while where we didn’t have anything on the books and we took good advantage of the RELAXation part of the weekend. We have really enjoyed the past 6 weeks without traveling and getting to see friends and do things around Chicago but I am getting really excited for the fall and football! I am not super excited about driving multiple weekends in a row but HEY you take the good with the not so good!

Anyway’s this weekend started dreadfully slow… We woke up on saturday morning to roll over, turn the TV on and continue to laze for a few more hours. Honestly I made breakfast and then lounged on the couch until about 1:00 when we decided to be functioning humans.

Weekend Workout

I cannot tell you the last time my day started at 1:00 and honestly don’t know when it will happen again. While I loved getting some extra rest, my body was not very happy at my lack of moving and treated me with a mighty headache…. nothing a little caffeine and cardio couldnt fix!

I snapped my daily shaker contents while making this... make sure you follow me on snapchat for more behind the scenes!

I snapped my daily shaker contents while making this…
make sure you follow me on snapchat (mywellnessland) for more behind the scenes!

We decided to go to do some cardio before lunch so we walked over to the gym since it was cloudy and rainy outside. We did about 12 minutes on the stationary bike to warm up and burn a few calories. Then we decided to hit the treadmill.

Brent & I have been “enjoying” walking on the treadmill on an incline during our cardio sessions lately. We both have been having a hard time fitting cardio into our lifting and like I said in my fitness recap we have been really working to focus on adding more cardio each week.

So after our bike session we did this fun and KILLER treadmill workout, where we WALKED!!! yep no running required and you’ll still burn a tonnnnn of calories in just 20 minutes.

Incline Treadmill Workout

If your treadmill doesn’t go up to 30, then just max it out and slowly decrease the incline for the first 10 minutes and then go back up the second 10 minutes.

After our cardio workout we had some lunch and went to a coffee shop for a little Barbell shrugged & photoshop work. It was a productive afternoon after a lazy morning. We ended our night with a fun shoulder lifting session at the gym.

Weekend Workout

I worked on some hang cleans & power cleans then focused on my strict press. I have been stuck at the same weight on strict press for a while so I was going to focus on my form while increasing my weight. I was feeling pretty good so I decided to record myself at 85# and was able to get 2 solid reps, then I decided that I was going to try 90# & guess what y’all I GOT IT!!!!!!!! I definitely struggled when pressing it up which is super apparent but I was able to hold it together and PRESS through, resulting in a 10# PR!!!! Yep 85# would’ve been a PR so I got a 2xPR! BOOM!!!!

Weekend Workout

you can see my 90# lift on Instagram!

 

Sunday we did our usual Sunday stuff to get ready for the week. We have been getting to COSTCO at 9:30 because of when our church gets out so we legit sit in the parking lot for 15-20 minutes before they let us in and are almost always out before 10:10 when they technically open at 10:00. Its awesome and kind of erie at the same time. BUT NO LINES = WINNING everyday!

I have been wanting to try La Croix for a longggggg time but never bite the bullet, well for the past few weeks I have mentioned to Brent each week at the store that i wanted to try it. SO this week we decided to go for it. I blame him for “letting” me get it but I am just as skeptic about trying new things….

Weekend Workout

linking up with Katie for Marvelous In My Monday!

Weekend Workout

The verdict… La Croix + Spark (or La Croix + Rehydrate) = AMAAAZINGGG!!! Its like having a POP without all the crap… I have missed the carbonation more than I knew I did, and its a nice treat!

When I was food prepping I turned the TV to ABC Family and it was the start of Twilight. I have never seen or had the desire to see any of the series but I have to admit the first movie was pretty good & definitely kept me interested when i was cooking!

To finish my sunday I got a phone call to do some “impromptu babysitting”… well actually I got a FaceTime from my step-mom, who I really thought was accidentally FaceTiming me, and when I answered i saw my baby niece cooing away! It was a fun little 5 minute chat with the babe & my parents while they were babysitting for my sister & brother in law. I haven’t seen that lil girl in almost a month and am definitely in need of a baby fix!

Weekend Workout

p.s don’t mind that I look super hit in the picture… I did it for the baby! 

Hope you all have a great start to your week and the Holiday Weekend!!!

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Fitness Lately

Hey Guys!

So I have been having some serious technical issues. I am really bummed that my post’s from last week have been mysteriously deleted from cyber space but instead of dwelling on the past I am picking up from where I left off and starting the week new.

I had a Fitness Friday post planned last week, but since that did not happen we will have a Fitness Lately post instead…

Over the past month Brent & I made a pact to bump up our lifting routine and really put the most into each session. Previously while we were hitting the gym regularly and lifting “hard” there was a key component missing and it felt like we were just going through the motions half of the time. After we cut out the junk from our diet, started focusing on managing our macros around our lifting days and adjusting our lifts to challenge ourselves a little bit more we both started to see and feel a huge difference.

Fitness Lately

Some fun hill sprints!!

So heres what we have been doing for the past month…

Traditional Split
Monday – Chest Day
Tuesday – Back Day
Wednesday – Arms & Abs
Thursday – Legs
Friday – Shoulders
Saturday – Make Up or Rest
Sunday – Play Day!

PLUS 10-20minutes of HIIT cardio at the end of most days

This is our Standard lifting routine, working up in weight performing 4-10 reps or until failure, usually we get 3-4 sets in before we can’t get 1 clean rep, some lifts are differnet but this is the general goal. Primarily starting with barbell lifts and then moving into dumbbells, the pretty standard lifts nothing fancy.

Most of the time we do our barbell work together, spotting each other and motivating each other to lift more, push harder. Dumbbell lifts half the time are free game, I like to do lighter weight stabilization lifts and Brent enjoys going heavier and harder. We will do some together and some apart, this is our “gym freedom” time.

Fitness Lately

Surrender Squats

Leg day is again another “free” day. We both do our legs differently, primarily due to my hip issues that I have been working through, and because its easier to have two different bars than constantly changing the 400+ pounds that Brent throws around! I love it this way though, we are able to just do our things, work hard side by side & still push each other when things get tough.

Last week after a fun Sunday Olympic Lifting day we decided to incorporate more olympic lifts into our regular routine.

Oly Addition
Monday – No Oly
Tuesday – Front Squats
Wednesday – Snatch
Thursday – Back Squats
Friday – Cleans
Saturday – Deadlifts & OH Squats
Sunday – PLAY DAY!!!!

The addition of the olympic lifts has made a HUGE change, I know its hard to say that after a week but doing an additional lift has been really challenging and makes you use your WHOLE body to stabilize the bar after taxing one muscle group/area. We did a lot of Oly lifts when we were doing CrossFit regularly so its been fun to add them back in to our routine. My upper traps are definitely reminding me that I haven’t been working them as hard lately.

Fitness Lately

So there you have it, the basis of our lifting routine. We do try to change it up a little bit each day but if you would be interested in our lifts and splits let me know and I will be happy to share!

Happy Lifting!

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The Gym Bully

Its Thursday and I typically don’t post but I had something happen to me this morning and since its Thursday and I have an awesome platform to think out loud I felt moved to share… The Gym Bully, you know you’ve had one before. 

Thank YOU Amanda for this platform!

Thank YOU Amanda for this platform!

Brent & I have been lifting together a few mornings a week to target specific muscle groups and get our #swoll on…. really we just wanted a change and Brent is a heavy lifter by nature.

I have been really reluctant to workout at the “box” gym that we belong to because I don’t like working out in super crowded “meathead” gyms. I hate to stereotype lifters but the first two times I went to the gym the “jock guys” there had such a persona of “betterness” that my skin crawled and I had serious anxiety about lifting.

We switched to lifting in the morning which helped me take a big deep breath and feel less anxious because the gym was about 1/4 as full as during “peak” hours. I have been really loving lifting heavy and seeing my weights increase over the weeks, while I love my crossfit & GPP workouts I often need to change things up, and right now lifting heavy with a little mix of crossfit is working best for me.

This morning we headed to the gym to do legs. Last week when we lifted legs together we worked on the same squat rack, as the other one was occupied. Now if you know Brent & I at all you will realize that working on the same squat rack provides multiple challenges.

you can see our height difference here...

you can see our height difference here…

The Two BIG ONES!!!
1. Brent is 5’7, I am 6’0… the height of the bar is significantly different between the two of us
2. Brent’s PR squat is 455#, and on most days hits 425#… my back squat PR is 225#, and on most days only hit 155# (yeah my squat needs work!)

This means we are changing weight regularly,
and I have to start in a squat position to just unpack the bar….

Today when we got to the gym both racks were open and the gym was pretty empty, so we both took a rack and got to work. After our first warm up set I saw this guy walk up and stand behind us, I could tell that he was wanting our bars, but obviously they were both empty and we just walked to put weight on them, so he would get the point right?

WRONG! The guy just stood there for a few minutes, trying to intimidate ME, before walking away after a few minutes he comes back up behind us and stares us down a little more.
Then he walks up to Brent (as he is approaching the bar to start a lift) and says “You just startin bro?” after Brent tells him he was just starting.
The guy walks up to me (as I am now approaching the bar) and says “Uhhh you almost done here?” I quickly tell him No I was just starting and have both back and front squat to perform. He walks away again goes over to his “friend” another serious wanna-be-meathead and does some shoulder presses while mean-mugging the s*** outta me.

After a few minutes he walks back up to me and goes “Yo you mind if I work in with you?” I said “uh sure…” while I secretly wanted to say “NO GO DO YOUR OWN WORKOUT!” but I am not that mean! So he does a few squats, stands back and is talking to his friend who is not lifting at all, just standing there, the two of them giving me a dirty look as I continue to do my workout, working up in weight and trying not to let them get under my skin.

After a few rounds of “working in together” I finally turn to the guy and said “HI I’m Allison…” I figure if the fool is going to “workout” with me than he should know my name. He works up to a pretty light weight (just 40# more than I was lifting) and then goes “alright I’m done, thanks” and walks away.

Brent turned to me and said “Way to hold your own babe!” At that point I didn’t even think about how the guy was trying to intimidate me off the bar, I was focused on lifting and working on my workout and didn’t really care what this stupid guy had to say about it. But at the same time I know I felt motivated and “safe” by knowing that Brent was standing right there, if the guy tried to pull something I knew I had backup!

But it got me thinking and the Super Bowl commercial #likeagirl just kept playing through my head.

Why is it OKAY for guys to bully females at the gym? I can lift heavy things, I definitely performed more quality lifts than he did and I was willing to let him work in with me, and increase his weight as he wanted. But still he was trying to pressure me out of the squat rack so he could have a more quality workout? Why does his workout matter more than mine?

I think this above situation is why soo many females avoid the free-weight sections of the gym. This is not the first time I have felt the “eyes” of a guy on me trying to edge me out of the squat rack, off a machine, off a bar… and I’d like to think I am in pretty good shape and lift moderate to heavy amounts of weight.

So I guess the moral of the story is to be proud of being a female in the gym. Be proud of lifting heavy things and working on your fitness, be strong & hold your ground ladies because bullies exist even in the gym. But at the end of the day letting someone walk all over you at the gym is only going to result in you having a bad workout and being upset.

540# Leg Press

I’m PROUD of this 540# Leg Press x2… #likeagirl

From back day earlier in the week.

I’m PROUD of this back progress & definition #likeagirl

Lift #likeagirl & Be Proud!

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Stop Striving Start Thriving Challenge

Happy Friday!!! I don’t know about you but this cold weather has been making this week feel forever long… I sort of feel like that each week until Friday comes and then the weekend goes by super fast, whats up with that?! Okay enough on the moaning about the cold…

2015 Intention

Remember that intention I set for myself on New Years day to practice more Self Love in 2015. I want to love who I am, where I am and achieve a healthier relationship with myself.

When I started my blog I was so incredibly inspired by Kasey, her blog and her story really resonated with me & inspired me to not only start my own blog but find peace with my diet & food rules. Kasey led me to Heather, whose messages always seem to be right on target with my feelings & struggles.

When I heard about Heather & Kasey’s book BODYpeace I knew that I wanted to get it and read it. I knew that if nothing else it would open my eyes to the areas in my life that I still struggle with. When I was given the opportunity to receive the E-Book through my ambassadorship with FitFluential I signed up about as fast as I was able.

Now by e-version of BODYpeace has been sitting in my inbox waiting for me to take the plunge… I just couldn’t find it in me to open the book. WHY?!

On Monday January 12th Heather & Kasey are starting a 30 day challenge called Stop Striving Start Thriving. Its like they read my mind! What better way to start the new year and practice some extra self love than through 30 days of inspiration and motivation?

** Starting Jan 12th!! **

** Starting Jan 12th!! **

Heres the official information on #stopstrivingstartthriving from Kasey:

Do you feel ridden with anxiety, fixate on body parts you hate, obsessively count calories, restrict your food intake, binge uncontrollably, compare yourself to other women’s bodies, eat foods to look a certain way, or deny yourself of food and exercise that brings you pleasure? If so, then I have two words for you: welcome home.
 
SURPRISE!
So many of you have asked for a BODYpeace challenge to ring in the New Year and so we made it happen for you. Join us starting NEXT Monday, January 12th, for the Stop Striving Start Thriving challenge!
 
Kasey and Heather spent YEARS experiencing all the above BODYshame symptoms and, over the past four years, have gone through a major BODYpeace transformation ourselves. And we want the same for you! Everything that we outline in BODYpeace is EXACTLY what we did to reach this place of freedom today. We want you to make 2015 your best year yet! LET’S DO THIS!
 
This is unlike any other New Years’ challenge out there, BODYpeace babe! This is a 30-day challenge in which you will go along with us for the BODYpeace ride. Heather & Kasey will be by your side the whole way as you journey through the BODYpeace book yourself and receive daily tips, motivation, and inspiration straight from us! We’re here to guide you to finally reach that place of BODYpeace that you’ve been longing for.
 
Are you ready to STOP letting your obsessions with your body, food, and exercise run your life?!
WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT
  • Amazing daily challenges to help you release BODYshame and achieve BODYpeace
  • Accountability and support from the incredible BODYpeace community
  • Giveaways from some of our favorite companies!
WHAT YOU NEED TO DO
  • Grab a copy of BODYpeace. Here is the link: http://amzn.to/1xAKicq. (Ebooks are coming VERY soon too!)
  • Get yourself a special journal just for this challenge
  • Join the BODYpeace Facebook group Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/bodypeace/. All of the challenges, motivation, tips, and giveaways will be given to you right here, so make sure you’re in! 
When you complete your daily BODYpeace challenges, you’ll be posting them in the community and on Instagram for extra entries! We will be using the hashtags #bodypeacemovement and #StopStrivingStartThriving and don’t forget to tag us @heatherwaxman and @powercakes!
 
Tag a soul sister here to join you! It’s always better with your girls by your side. We couldn’t have reached BODYpeace without each other. Its been a huge part of our journeys too!
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So what do you think? Will you join with me and practice a little more self love the next 30 days with the help of BODYpeace.
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Weekending III

Happy Monday!!!

I have to say that I am not super excited about having to work a FULL week this week. It was really nice to have a day off in the middle of last week & three days off the week before. Oh Holidays why do you have to go by so quickly!?

Friday night we watched Biggest Loser and I worked on a little DIY craft which I will be sharing with you guys later this week. My fit female friends will LOVE it!

A little DIY to end the week!

A little DIY to end the week!

Saturday started like most do with open gym at EPC. There is something about open gym and getting to work on different moves that is a lot of fun. The chill vibe of the gym and just being able to hangout, chat and throw down some heavy weight is something that I really love about our CrossFit gym & community. Our Olympic lift workout for the day was snatches and power clean & jerks. I worked on both for a while getting a 95# snatch & 105# C&J then I decided to work on my biggest weaknesses. Pull Ups & Handstands.

Action shots are my favorite!

Action shots are my favorite!

I did rounds of pull up negatives with a band (started with green then moved to blue) holding chin above bar for 10-20seconds then in super slow motion lowered to the bottom. During my “rest” I did a handstand & held the position for a while (I couldn’t see the clock) until my arms got jello-y. I focused on getting my core tight and body in more of a straight line. I continued this cycle of pull up, handstand for 6-8 rounds making sure I took some good rest after the handstand.

Overcoming a fear & channeling my inner athlete to perfect the skill!

Overcoming a fear & channeling my inner athlete to perfect the skill!

Concurring my fear of falling on my head during a handstand and being able to start focusing on the skill of the movement was more exciting than I thought it would be. I  still need to get the confidence of finding the wall each time but I no longer fear falling or killing myself, which is AWESOME!

Last week I mentioned to Brent that I wanted to start making a conscious effort to have a date night each week (or at least every other week). We spend a lot of time together but some times I don’t think it is the most quality time, so by focusing on having a date night where we can connect, talk and do something fun we will be hitting all those key relationship factors!

Sometimes I take the extra time to actually put on makeup and wear cute clothing... and I kinda like when I do :)

Sometimes I take the extra time to actually put on makeup and wear cute clothing… and I kinda like when I do 🙂

So Saturday night we got our date night cloths on and headed to Coopers Hawk for dinner & wine. We are Wine of the Month members but didnt want a white wine with dinner so we swapped our wine for a Malbec (Brents favorite wine ever). The Malbec was delicious and so was dinner! I ordered the Soy Ginger Salmon & Brent got the Jambalaya both dishes were amazing and so filling.

Coopers Hawk

Coopers Hawk my Salmon dinner!

Coopers Hawk

Coopers Hawk

After dinner we headed to the tasting room to taste the January wines. We got to sample 8 different wines and surprisingly enjoyed most of them, even the whites! We are definitely a red house hold! We were chatting with the bar tender and asked if they saved the corks, this landed us with a big bag full of corks, WIN!!!

Date Night Selfies!

Date Night Selfies!

Date Night Selfies

Date Night Selfies are MARVELOUS!

Sunday was a chill day, sorta. We are starting our second (my third) AdvoCare 24 Day Challenge & so Sunday included a trip to Costco & the grocery store followed by a few hours of meal prep.

I decided to add a little extra challenge by including the principles of the Whole30 (Paleo based diet) to our 24DC. Brent & I eat pretty clean during the week, with the exceptions of work demons and weekends, so I wanted to give our bodys a bit of a change and challenge. I think it is really important to change up your diet every once and a while, it helps your see bigger changes in your body and gives you more variety in life.

ARE YOU ALL IN!?

ARE YOU ALL IN!?

I intend on sticking to the Whole30 principles pretty closely, with the exception of one sauce I made this week with peanut butter (sorry $12 on sunflower seed butter just wasn’t going to happen when i have some PB in the cupboard!) For this week to give myself a boost I am following the week 1 meal plan by Melissa. She has a killer website with SO MUCH Whole30 knowledge, and while I could use my brain and pinterest, I decided to stick to someone who was successful and let it go from there. I did make some modifications to the meals & mashed up my own stuff, because following a recipe to a T is way too easy!

Heres our meal plan for the week:
Breakfast – veggie quiche (larger version of these mini quiches)
Lunch & Dinners –
Carnitas Power Bowls (sautéed veggies, spaghetti squash & Melissa’s Carnitas)
Chicken Pad Thai
Chocolate Chili

Hope you have a wonderful week, and good luck to all my friends starting the 24DC this week!

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Have any good date night ideas? 

2015… Setting Intentions

Happy New Year!!

I really cannot believe that it is 2015 already! I feel like for so many years my life was waiting for 2013, the year I graduated from PT school, and now two years later it is 2015 and so much has changed.

In 2014 I made a list of things that I wanted to achieve in 2014. While that list was great, I did not reference back to it hardly at all, I did on occasion mentally but never looked to it when I was trying to make my next goal or pursue the next thing in my life. 2014 handed me a lot of adversity, a lot of stress and a lot of excitement. I moved 2 times in 3 months, changed my fitness from GPP to running to crossfit, changed clinics and job titles (a few times) and found that at the end of the day amongst all the uncertainty I will still have the love of my life at home to give me a big hug when I need it most.

I had zero intentions of writing a 2015 Resolution or Goals post today because I felt that my 2014 post was a hoax of lies and deceptions (and I hate failing) so I was just going to skip the whole thing and resolve to have a new year full of new experiences rather than expectations. Then I went to a Bikram Yoga class yesterday.

I have never been to a true hot yoga class before and was invited by a coworker to start the new year with one. So I went & at the beginning of the class the instructor took us through a New Year Meditation. At the end of the meditation she said to set an intention for 2015. Set something, a word, a phrase, a goal, anything. Commit to something to make 2015 the best year, give it intention to live by.

I sat there breathing in, repeating her mantra and then I set my intention to the first thing that popped in my head…

To be honest I was shocked that this is what came to me. I have an extremely hard time with connecting to meditations, connecting to intentions and connecting to the “light” during spiritually guided practices but at that time and during that moment my body 100% connected and committed to my 2015 intention.

2015 Intention

In 2015 I intend to practice more Self Love

Self Love is rather all encompassing, and in my mind can include all those typical new years resolutions. It will adapt to what the year has in store for me and will allow me to take a step back and reconnect with myself.

I have a lot of goals for this life and I have a lot of goals for the near future but putting a label on them and a timeframe right now is not the ideal for me.

So rather in 2015 I will practice self love. I will love my body, my mind, my soul & my life with every fiber of my being. I will work on my self and let 2015 provide me with the growth and maturation to become the best version of me.

Heres to 364 days of love!
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Set an intention & share it with me! 

Cranberry Orange Granola

This Cranberry Orange Granola is gluten-free and full of flavor, the perfect addition to your breakfast table.

Cranberry Orange Granola

Lately breakfast food has been my favorite, and I have been obsessing over homemade granola. I can eat the whole jar without blinking an eye, but give me some yogurt and I am done for. This is why I started making my own to have myself some money and control the ingredients in it.

I love store bought granola, the clusters, robust flavors and crunch is something I long for in my own granola. However most times to get that really amazing flavor & texture you have to bake it up. well this girl doesn’t have time for that because when the granola monster strikes at 7am there isn’t any time for baking, stirring, and baking some more.

Thankfully my stove top recipe from last year has come to the rescue time & time again. The basics of my original recipe stay true but the best thing is playing with the ingredients to change the flavor to whatever you want!

Last week I played with my granola flavors and whipped up a winter flavored batch of Cranberry Orange Granola!

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I seriously love the lighting and photographs of the cranberry orange granola.

Once we devoured all of the cranberry orange deliciousness & I felt a little guilty because I promised the recipe for my granola to a coworker I made another batch but this time mixed it up and made some Oatmeal Raisin Cookie inspired granola. The process for the granola is the same just different ingredients.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Granola

2.5cup Old Fashion Oats
1.5cup Chopped Pecans
1.5tbsp coconut oil
1/4cup ground flax seed
2tbsp ground cinnamon
1/4cup honey
1/4cup dark brown sugar
1.5cup raisins

I packaged up the granola in a cute little mason jar for my coworker. I love that the burlap ribbon took this simple jar of granola into a cute & festive little gift!

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Granola

Now I have a craving for yogurt & granola…

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Whats your favorite flavor of granola?