Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Joining a Running Group!

Maggie, Jamie, Nicole and I after running the Hudy 14k

Have you thought about starting to run or train for a race but the thought of weeks of training is intimidating? Or have you tried to start an exercise plan but gave up after three or four mornings of rolling over and hitting the snooze button?  These are just some of the reasons you may want to consider joining a running group!

I had been running on my own for about 6 months when I joined a running group last January in order to train for the Cincinnati Flying Pig Half-Marathon. Let me just say that joining a running group was one of the best decisions that I made during this health and wellness journey! While I still enjoy running on my own two times a week, the group runs for my other two runs during the week are by far my favorite.   Here are some of the benefits that I have found to joining a running group:
  • There is a set training schedule which focuses on gradually and properly training your body to run.  At the beginning of every month, my running group sends out a calendar with the month’s planned runs- including suggested mileage for the non-group running days.  That makes it very easy for me to know exactly what I should be doing on each day.

  • Group hanging out before the race!
    Long Runs: Being a part of a running group has made long running days so much easier.  First of all, I hate carrying water with me when I run- I have tried a variety of different methods for carrying water with me and I really do not like any of them.  The running group that I train with not only plans the routes for the long runs (which is extremely helpful in preventing the boredom that comes with running the same route over and over), they also set up water stops along the run. On our extra long runs, they also provide Gatorade and energy supplements like GU and Bloks.  
  • Becoming a faster, stronger runner:  I fully credit running with a running group to making me a stronger and faster runner.  Let’s be honest, if I had to pick a running route, I would pick the flattest course available and I would go the same pace every time.  However, as part of our training , the running group coaches include specified hill days or speed work days- and while I usually whine and complain about them during the run, I know that those are the days that I improve the most and those are also the type of runs I would probably never do on my own. Also, I do not care how long you  have been running, there are going to be times you really want to stop and walk- but there is something about not wanting to be the only one in the group walking that always keeps me running! 

  • Exploring different areas: Even though I grew up in Cincinnati, there are so many areas of town that I never saw until I started running with Bob Roncker’s.  Plus, when you are running with a group of people you can run in areas that you could never run in alone- especially at night. One of the coolest experiences was last winter when we would run from Newport across the Ohio River bridges into downtown at night while the city was all lit up.


  • Nicole, Jamie and I trying to look serious before UC game
     Accountability/Friendships: When I first joined Bob Roncker’s Running group, the only person I knew out of the hundreds of runners was my friend Jonna.  Talk about intimidating! However over the course of the year I have gotten to know so many different people from all different walks of life- and have even made some good friends that I have done things with outside of running! I cannot tell you how many times I have been tempted to not get up at 6:00 on a Saturday morning (especially when it is cold or raining- OR BOTH!), but because I know that my running group buddies will be there waiting for me and will notice if I am not there it is much easier to roll out of bed and lace up my running shoes.  Plus, the miles go a lot faster when you are chatting with friends than when you are just running by yourself!

There are running groups in almost every city- a good place to start is by checking out the local running stores and asking if they sponsor a running group or whether they know of any established running groups.  You can also check out meetup.com to find running groups- or if all fails, just use the trusty standby google!  Some running groups are set up to train for a specific race/distance, while other running groups might train all year round. Also, some groups cost money while others are free. I train year-round with Bob Roncker's in Cincinnati: this year for $250 I get training plans for the entire year, 2 weekly coach led group runs, 4 technical shirts, 3 pair of running socks, running shorts, running vest, free happy hours/barbeques, 10% discount at the running store and entry fees paid for 3 area races.  It has been well worth it! 


Scott & I before our 5K- he has become a total rockstar runner!
If there is not a running group in your area, another idea to stay on track is to find a friend who will support you and encourage you- even if they are in a different city.  One of my best friends from college, Scott, started running a few months ago as well and even though he and his wife Alli live in North Carolina it has been really fun to text each other with our runs and we even met up to do a 5k together in July.  Our next race will be the Turkey Trot in Cincinnati and a half-marathon together is in the near future!  Do not let the fear of failure or lack of accountability stop you from being successful- join a group, find a friend, do whatever it takes to get started and stay with it! 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Two in One Recipes

I like hummus, but I am also picky.  I like it to have lots of flavor, but I also hate artificial flavors & colorings.  Upon some serious label reading I realized it’s just easier to make my own.  Since a jar of tahini (one of the main ingredients in hummus) is about $10, I was thrilled to find a recipe for tahini that was chemical/preservative free and costs just a fraction of the price! 

Tahini Recipe
 To make 1 cup of tahini, you'll need:
  • 1 cup sesame seeds
  • 1/6 cup (or 8 teaspoons) of olive oil

Processing the seeds into Tahini
  1. Heat a heavy, wide-bottomed sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the sesame seeds and toast lightly - about 2 minutes, shaking the pan so they toast evenly.  Keep a careful eye on the sesame seeds as they go from toasted to burnt really quickly. As soon as they start to brown, they are done.
  3. Transfer to a bowl and let cool completely.

Next, you'll process the toasted seeds with the olive oil.
  1. Put the toasted sesame seeds in a food processor and pour in the olive oil.
  2. Pulse for 3-5 minutes, or until it's as smooth as you can get it.  (if it's not smooth enough you can add a little more olive oil)
  3. Remove from food processor and store in the refrigerator.

You can use this basic tahini in any hummus recipe, but one of my favorites is below. 

Sweet Potato Hummus Recipe
2-3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed

olive oil

sea salt

2 cups chickpeas

1/3 cup tahini

3 cloves garlic

juice of 1 lemon
3 tablespoons olive oil

sea salt
freshly ground pepper

cayenne and cumin (optional)


Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Toss the cubed sweet potato with olive oil and a generous dash of sea salt. Roast for about 30 minutes, or until tender. Once it's tender, transfer it to a food processor or blender and add the chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, olive oil and garlic. Process until it's creamy, adding a little more oil if necessary. Season with salt, freshly ground pepper and a little bit of cumin or cayenne, if you like. Serve with julienned raw veggies or pita.

Makes about 3 cups of hummus and it will keep in the refridgerator for about 2 weeks. 
My favorite things to dip into hummus are carrot sticks, snap peas, raw green beans and celery.  Just about any crunchy raw veggie I can dunk/dip. I make a batch and separate it into smaller containers and cut up some vegetables so I have a quick go to option in my fridge without being tempted by something less healthy. 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Tips for Suriving a Half-Marathon!




Mary Ann, myself, Jamie, Taylor, and Nicole before the race!
This past Saturday, I ran in the 17th Annual Indianapolis Half Marathon with some of my friends from Bob Roncker's running group.  It was a fantastic race and I would recommend it to anyone!  The race was extremely well organized, the course was beautiful- we ran through Ft. Harrison state park and the autumn foliage was gorgeous- and the race volunteers were extremely friendly and encouraging. After over 5 months of training, it was great to be able to have the accomplishment of finishing a half-marathon with a personal record time of 2:16.25.

I know that some of you may be signed up for a half-marathon or interested in running one in the future, so I thought I would share some of my and my running friends' favorite tips on how to survive a half-marathon.

Pre- Race:

  • Eat and drink properly the week before the race, not just the night before:  Everyone has heard about carb loading the night before the race, but it is important to eat extra carbs and drink extra water in the days leading up to the race to get your body prepared.
  • Get prepared the night before:  Lay out all of your race gear and make sure you have everything.  I usually go ahead and put my timing chip on my shoe and pin my race bib to my shirt or belt, just so it is one less thing I have to worry about. Also, it might not be a bad idea to set two alarms just in case!
  • Glide is your friend:  To prevent chafing, Glide is awesome! It looks like a roll of deodorant and you can use it on your feet, legs, sports bra area, arms, etc… And according to my friend Ann, if chafing does occur, use Caramex!
  • Dress for the run, not for the pre-race waiting period.  The absolute worst part of a race is getting there early and waiting for the actual race to start, especially when it is cold. Even though it is tempting to put on extra layers in the chilly morning, you should always dress as if the temperature is 20 degrees hotter than it is, because once you start running you will warm up fast. 
  • Look at the course ahead of time: You do not need to memorize the course, but you should have an idea of what the elevation looks like – if you know there are a few hills at the end you may want to save some of your energy or not kick into gear as quickly.  
During the Run:
After the race- we survived!
  • Pacing: Of all the tips, I think pacing yourself during a half-marathon is the most important. It is critical not to start out too fast! It is really easy to do, because you have pre-race adrenaline and also you are running with a bunch of other runners and it is easy to get caught up in matching their pace.  And trust me, while you may be able to match the pace of a 6 minute runner for a few hundred feet, you will never survive the entire race that way! If you don’t have a group to run with, or a running watch to pace yourself by, look for a pacer at the start of your race so you can achieve your race time goal and run a steady pace!  
  •  Drink water at water stops- especially in the beginning it is tempting to skip the water stops because you might not feel thirsty.  However, remember you have 13.1 miles to run, your body is going to need the hydration- you do not need to gulp down tons of water, but at least get a quick sip.
  • GU’s/Energy Supplements: There are a ton of different energy supplements out there which you can take during the race to replace your depleted glycogen supplies during an endurance run.   During a half marathon,  I usually take a Gu around mile 5 and around mile 10.  I like the Vanilla Bean flavored Gu’s, but some of the other energy supplements that my running friends and I like are Stinger Organic Chews and Clif’s shot bloks.
  • Run with your friends: Seriously, joining a running group or committing to run a race with a friend (s) can make all of the difference in the world.  The miles fly by when you have friends to talk with or to encourage one another.  Also, it makes pre-and post race more fun!
  • Push through mental blocks:  Running for over 2 hours is a really long time- and many times your mind will give out before your body does.  When the little voice inside your head starts to tell you that you cannot finish or that you need to walk- IGNORE IT! Do whatever you need to do to silence that voice!  More than anything remind yourself that you have trained for this, you are ready for this, and your body can do this.  
  • The last mile (or even tenth of a mile): In every race that I have run, this last mile has always been the worst. This is the time when I really have to push myself and I start measuring the distance left it in terms of tenths of miles. This is the time where you just have to push yourself as hard as you can, knowing it will be over soon!  
-After the Run: 
Finished with a personal best time!
  •  Celebrate: This is a huge accomplishment! Savor the moment and wear your medal proudly!
  •  Ice Baths: This suggestion comes entirely from Nicole, because I have not been brave enough to try it- after a race all I want is a hot shower! However, Nicole swears by ice baths after a race to reduce any pain or soreness!
  • Stretching/Foam rolling: Stretching and using a foam roller can also help prevent aches and injuries and get you ready to start training for the next race!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Eating Healthy in OKC


Oklahoma is known for some great things including the OKC Thunder, football, beautiful sunsets and affordable living.  Embarrassingly it is also one of the fattiest states in the nation.  What do you expect when we make our state meal fried okra, squash, cornbread, barbecue pork, biscuits, sausage and gravy, grits, corn, strawberries, chicken fried steak, pecan pie, and black-eyed peas?  Seriously?  That's not a meal, that's a week's worth of calories!  Despite that I have found some great healthy & local options in OKC that we support on a regular basis. 



Wrap & Cous Cous from Cool Greens
Brian & I eat at Cool Greens at least once a week, every week, and we never get tired of it.  There are 5 locations all around the metro and you have to try really hard to not get something healthy or delicious.  These aren’t light salads that leave you hungry in an hour.  Their proteins are grilled chicken breast, tuna, shrimp and tofu.  I usually stick with a build your own salad, but when I am feeling adventurous I do the whole wheat wrap or flatbread pizza, both of which are amazing.  You get to pick your greens from a choice of spinach, arugula, romaine and mixed greens (no iceberg here!) and there are about 50 toppings ranging from artichoke hearts, peppadew peppers, spiced pecans, sundried tomatoes, snap peas, fresh mozzarella, hearts of palm, capers and so many more.  The possibilities are endless.  They also make their own dressings and most are under 25 calories an ounce.  My favorite is jalapeno lime vinaigrette and it’s only 16 calories an ounce!  Their website nutritional information is very thorough and lists calories, fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium, fiber, carbohydrates, sugar and protein.  Their frozen yogurt and soup are also tasty and they don’t offer soda (poison). 

 


Delicous & Local Wedge Pizzeria
When we want to splurge and have pizza, our first choice is always The Wedge.  There are two locations in OKC.  I personally have the Wedge to thank for introducing me to Brussels sprouts and figs, neither of which would have crossed my plate before we went there.  They focus on using only the freshest products available, making everything from scratch daily.  Their flourishing garden out front provides basil, rosemary, spring mix and arugula for many of their dishes.  Some of my personal favorites are:

·         Prosciutto Wrapped Pears-with goat cheese and drizzled aged balsamic

·         Marinated Mozzarella Salad-arugula, sundried tomatoes, toasted pine nuts

·         Brussels Sprout Salad-shaved brussels sprouts, pancetta, sundried tomatoes, toasted pine nuts

·         The Napoli Pizza-toasted walnuts, asiago cheese, arugula, rosemary, pancetta

You can build your own, but I like to leave it to the experts and trust their judgement for pairings on pizza toppings.  You can get a marinara pizza with pepperoni, but why would you want to?  Their topping selection includes some unique flavors like: capicolla, kalamata olives, roasted fennel, and goat cheese.  I challenge you to go outside your standard flavor profile and try something new!



Dragon Roll at Matthew Kenney
If you are really ready to try something new, how about something raw?  Or everything raw?  Try Matthew Kenney in Classen Curve.  They employ innovative techniques and creative thinking to prepare minimally processed, plant-based cuisine, that is delicious, vibrant and nutritious.  The menu changes quarterly and the current offering include: Zuchinni Hummus, Corn Mint Pesto, Pine Nut Ricotta, and Raspberry Avocado Gelato.  The presentations really are a work of art.  You don’t have to be a vegan to enjoy Matthew Kenney, but you do need a sense of adventure.  There are so many unique flavors and items I have never experienced and their staff is always great about explaining the items.  They also operate a world renowned raw food culinary academy and a small pantry section where you can purchase your favorite items to go.  I was pleasantly surprised to enjoy cold raw lasagna sans traditional noodles, ground beef and loads of cheese.  They do use dehydrators for some of the ‘cooking’ but nearly all the items are served in a cold state.  Brian is a big fan of their sushi, made with jicama ‘rice’, turnips and spinach.  If you aren’t in OKC (The Land of Perfect) you can also check them out in Chicago or Santa Monica. 

What are your favorite healthy eats in your hometown?  I'm always up for a road trip!


 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

It is not easy, but it is worth it

The other day I was browsing Pinterest (is anyone else besides Lexy and I addicted to Pinterest?) when I came across the quote “I’m not telling you it is going to be easy, I’m telling you it is going to be worth it.” The past few days, I have been reflecting on that quote a lot because what it says is so powerful about what it takes to be really successful not only at this health and fitness journey, but just life in general. 

I think this quote is poignant because at our core we really do want things to come easy.  Who can honestly say that they don’t wish that they could take a magic pill and all of the weight would fall away no matter how many Oreos you consumed?   Or that before entering a new relationship you would know with 100% certainty that it was going to be smooth sailing and that everything was going to end up perfectly? Or that the perfect job that paid over six figures while at the same time making you feel fulfilled would just fall into your lap? 
When people ask me how I lost 119 lbs and what my advice is for starting out on such a journey, I wish that I could tell them, “oh its no, big deal, it is going to be easy. You are going to start eating apples and never want ice cream again. And you are going to love to exercise so much that waking up at 6:00 on a cold Saturday morning to run is going to be no problem. Trust me, it will be easy.”  However, the one thing I have learned over the past 16 months is that it is not easy! Sure, it gets easier- exercise routines become habits and healthy, non-processed food does taste better…but it never gets easy.  There are still days when the thought of running 3 miles or doing walking lunges with weights sounds absolutely painful and miserable.  But you know what- 99.9% of the time I still do it- and I can honestly say I have never once regretted a run after it was complete.   And while these past 16 months have not been easy, they have absolutely,  without a doubt, been worth it.  I am a happier, healthier, stronger, more confident person because  of this journey-  but when I started this journey I had no idea that those things would happen or how I would change in the process.  I had no idea that all of those days when I made myself go running or when I turned down a piece of chocolate cake would lead to me becoming the person I am today. In fact, I think it is because the journey was not always easy is what makes the accomplishment so much more satisfying.  It may be totally cliché, but if it was easy, everyone would do it and then it would not mean anything. 
Are you embarking on a new venture in your life? Is there something in your life that you want to change, but you are scared to try because it might not work out the way that you want it to?  The best advice I can give you is to stop being afraid, take a risk, and put yourself out there knowing that no matter what happens you are strong enough to handle it.  No, it probably won’t always be easy.  But at the end of the day, it will be worth it.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Asian Lettuce Wraps

I used to love P.F Changs or Pei Wei and devoured their saucy & messy lettuce wraps.  Once I realized they were over 500 calories and I could make them healthier, tastier and cheaper at home I was sold!  I have seen variations with bamboo shoots, mushrooms and cucumbers; I don’t particularly like those, so I omitted them.  Make sure to have plenty of napkins ready because these are messy, but delicious! 

Makes 4 (2-wrap) servings

1 can (8 ounces) water chestnuts, drained and minced
3 tablespoons sherry
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon unsalted almond butter (could
      use peanut butter if you wanted)
2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons hot-pepper sauce (like Sriracha)
2 packets (.035 ounce each) sweetener (I used
      truvia)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 cup minced onion
1/2 pound chicken breast cut in strips (could
     also use ground turkey)
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
8 leaves butter lettuce
1 whole green onion, chopped
1 cup shredded carrots
½ cup slivered almonds (could also use peanuts)

In a medium bowl, combine the water chestnuts, sherry, hoisin sauce, almond butter, soy sauce, hot-pepper sauce, and sweetener. Mix well. Set aside.

Mist a large, nonstick skillet with olive oil spray and set over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes, or until fragrant. Add the onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 to 4 minutes, or until tender and just starting to brown. Increase the heat to medium-high. Add the chicken, ginger, and salt. Cook the chicken for 3 to 4 minutes, or until no longer pink. Add the reserved water chestnut mixture. Cook for 2 minutes, or until hot. Stir in the sesame oil. Remove the pan from the heat. Spoon the chicken mixture, evenly divided, into the lettuce leaves. Set on a serving dish. Top with green onion, carrots and slivered almonds. Serve immediately.  (Each wrap has about 100 calories)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Can playing on crutches be a curse?

We have another guest post today, this one is from Sarah Rohrer, Lexy's sister in law and Carrie's friend.  She is also the talent behind our fun website header and a frequent commenter on the blog.  We have all known each other for nearly 20 years.  Sarah, her husband and their beautiful daughters are on their own health journey and enjoy celebrating their successes along the way. 


My husband recently hurt his knee and was given crutches.  Since I’ve never injured myself, I thought it would be fun to see what crutches feel like to use.  My husband immediately told me, “don’t play on my crutches, it is bad luck!”  I thought OH FUEY!

Well, two weeks later, while walking…yes just walking around the corner, I rolled my ankle and sprained it.  The curse came true.  My hubby is so sweet; he never once said told you so.

I had to wear a boot for two weeks and start physical therapy once the boot came off.  In physical therapy I learned that I have very weak ankles.  The ankle exercises I was given are great for building strength in your ankles.  Of course, if you actually sprain, fracture, or break your ankle, ignore these tips and go directly to your doctor.  I’m only providing these exercises as a preventive measure for ankle injuries.

I typically completed the exercises once or twice a day.

The first two exercises are easy and can be done without any equipment:

Ankle Circles – rotate your foot at the ankle in a circular motion.  Do this clockwise and counter clockwise.  I typically did twenty in each direction on both sides.

Ankle Alphabet – write the alphabet with your foot and ankle in the air.  I imagined that my big toe had a pencil attached to it.  Write A to Z once on both sides.

The rest of the exercises require resistance bands.  Mine were Thera-Bands given to me through physical therapy, but you can easily find them.  Here is just one example from Amazon.  I started out with a light band, moved to medium, and then hard.

Resisted Plantar Flexion – Wrap the band around the bottom of the foot, pull the band towards the body and press down on the foot.  I did this twenty times on both sides.

Resisted Eversion – Wrap the band around the bottom of the foot, wrap both sides of the band around the outside of the other foot, pull the band towards the body, and turn the first foot outward.  I did this twenty times on both sides.
Resisted Inversion – Wrap the band around the bottom of the foot, cross the other leg over the first leg, wrap both sides of the band around the side of the second foot, pull the band towards the body, and turn the first foot inward.  I did this twenty times on both sides.

I was surprised to find that these very easy exercises really helped to make my ankles stronger.  I’m happy to say that I’m completely healed and able to wear my high heels again!

Do you have any funny injury stories?  What exercises were you given?

Monday, October 8, 2012

Congratulations Tracey!

Congratulations Tracey Frederick, you won the 10,000 hits giveaway!  A snack attack goodie pack awaits!!  Thanks to everyone who entered and to all our loyal readers. 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

But I deserve this!

The past couple of weeks have been really stressful and difficult for me. I do not need to go into specific details, because I imagine that most of us have experienced one or more of the following- riding an emotional roller coaster, trying to juggle a million different commitments without dropping one, feeling the stress piling up, struggling to decide what direction to go- or basically just feeling plain run down and exhausted.  (Not to mention trying to appear perfect and put together during all of this!).  That, my friends, has been my September.

Even after losing 119 lbs and switching my entire health and fitness routine, when I am having a stressful or bad day (s), week (s) or in this case month, I am still immediately tempted to resort to food to comfort or reward myself. Not only that, but a little inner voice starts trying to convince me that instead of running or exercising, I will just feel better if I take a night off to relax and do nothing.  After the day you have had, you deserve this, that little voice says. Do not be so rigid, you deserve this.

Now, is there anything wrong with indulging in a splurge treat or taking a night off to veg in sweats and watch dvr’d tv episodes? Absolutely not. However, what I have found is the problem is not that - the problem is that this behavior starts leading down a slippery slope of reverting to old habits of skipping more than one run or having a “treat” every night. Then not only are you feeling stressed, tired, and overwhelmed- now you are also feeling guilty!

What I have discovered is that little voice inside my head that is telling me that I will feel better by rewarding myself with food or a “night off” is a liar.  No amount of ice cream or chocolate or bread or pasta will magically elevate my mood or make my problems go away.  And unless I am sick or injured, taking a night off of exercise is not going to “heal” me- in fact it is the opposite- I am convinced that the extra endorphins and stress relief from running is one of the primary reasons that I was able to handle this month as well as I did. 

While I was certainly not perfect, I am really proud of how successfully I was able to fight the urge to return to my old modus operandi of using food to cope with stress or emotional situations- while I certainly had some days that I ate more than I normally do, I was able to emerge from this difficult season without gaining any of my weight back.  It was definitely not easy, but here are some tricks or tips that I learned from this experience:
  •  Do not obsess if you overindulge one day or “slip up.”  Instead of feeling guilty over something you cannot fix, focus getting right back on track immediately. One way to do this is to increase calorie burn to compensate for the extra calories eaten the day before. 
  •           Do not bring any of your comfort foods into your house- even if they are healthy! I love granola, and while I normally am able to control my portion size since it is high calorie, during this month I noticed I was talking myself into an extra serving almost every time.  So I had to stop buying it for right nowJ
  •          Remind yourself constantly of how far you have come and how much you do NOT want to go back and how rewarding yourself with food is a part of that old life that did NOT make you happy before so why would it make you happy now?
  •           KEEP TRACKING.  Especially during maintenance phase, when things get busy it is easy to stop tracking your calories or exercise. By now I know the calorie counts of most things that I eat, but I would find myself saying, oh its no big deal, its only 200 extra calories- which is true until you do that 10 times!  I made a promise to myself that I could eat whatever I wanted but I HAD to write it down in myfitnesspal. Trust me, that stopped a lot of overindulging before it happenedJ
  • Measure your portions: I recently got out of the habit of this and I cannot tell you how much a difference it makes.  What I think a TBSP of almond butter is and how big a TBSP of almond butter actually is are often very different! Just yesterday, I recommitted myself to measuring out my food again to make sure I stay on track.
 

At the end of the day, I have to keep reminding myself that I do deserve something- but what I deserve has nothing to do with how many calories I eat or how many miles I run or do not run.  I deserve to be happy, healthy, confident and proud of myself and my accomplishments.  I deserve to give myself grace and allow myself to not always be perfect.  I deserve to feel loved and special and important.  And all the candy bars in the world cannot make me feel those things.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

It's another contest!

We are so thrilled that over 10,000 of you have visited our page, especially since we just started 6 months ago.  We are giving away a snack pack of all of our favorite healthy goodies.  There will be some larabars, almond butter, unsweetened dried fruit and other clean snacks that we have fallen in love with and hope you like too! 

All you need to do to enter is leave us a comment on this post about 1 thing that you learned from our blog or 1 tip you have put into practice.  We appreciate our faithful readers and want to give you the information you are looking for, so tell us what topics you want to make sure we cover. 

The contest will run until midnight on the 6th, so be sure to post now!