Wednesday, September 4, 2013


So I know it's like bittersweet being September and all, but I feel like I'm reaping all the benefits here in VA.  Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte is out as well as their delicatessen treats, Dunkin Donuts' Pumpkin Swirl coffee is out, and it's 80 degrees and sunny today.  WINNING.  OMG I DIDN'T EVEN MENTION ALL THE PUMPKIN BEERS WE'VE TRIED.  I think we're up to at least 9 at this point, which is a whole nother blog subject in itself, but just for your reference Schlafly Pumpkin Ale is our #1 (sorry PA peeps, I was informed you can't get it there), and Dogfish Head Punkin Ale is definitely my close second anyway.  You get more bang for your buck from Schlafly; Dogfish does their typical four pack.  STILL WORTH IT THOUGH.

Anyways, I love rambling, if someone knows of any jobs that are looking for anything along those lines, I'm obv their girl.  So, I found a pumpkin brownie recipe on pinterest--Two Ingredient Brownies
and because I always want to bake things but feel like I never have enough time and rarely do I have enough money to buy the ingredients (why would I spend money on food when I can buy a shirt or something? i have problems) I thought this would be PERFECT if they ended up coming out okay.  It can be my like go to recipe.  So, I had Steve pickup my ingredients last week, literally all you need is a 15oz can of pumpkin (not pumpkin pie, just straight pumpkin, although the pie kind might taste good--probably end up too sweet though which may or may not be a problem) (who puts these long of sentences in a parenthesis? i may as well put them at the beginning and end of my blog) a box of brownie mix, I chose a dark chocolate double fudge kind, and that's it really, but I also had him grab some chocolate chips because I LOVE chocochips in my brownies!  The only other thing I ended up throwing in was a teaspoon of cinnamon, because I love cinnamon and it pairs well with both chocolate and pumpkin, obviously.

So, in case you don't want to read all of the in between word nonsense I love to throw in, the recipe is:

1 15 oz. can of Pumpkin
1 box of brownie mix of choice
1/2 bag of chocolate chips (give or take)
1 tsp. of cinnamon

As the recipe above via Pinterest states:  DO NOT ADD OIL OR EGGS THAT BROWNIE MIX MAY CALL FOR.  I don't know what that would do, but they definitely don't need it.

So mix them up and basically follow the cooking instructions otherwise.  Mine called for 350 and the cooking times depended on the pan size.

I started with a muffin pan because I like how you don't have to cut them or anything and they're just ready to go, but they don't shape up as they cook, they literally cook and stay exactly as you drop them in, so I cooked the rest in a glass dish.  Here is what the two looked like:


Either way they were delicious!  Super moist and you'd never know they're missing the egg or oil.  The pumpkin isn't overwhelming at all, it's literally just right.  I ate mine with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream and I was in heaven for the five seconds it took me to eat them.  I calculated them to be about 160 calories each (I got 6 muffin sized and 12 in the dish as you can see).  The muffin sized were a little bigger so they may be pushing 200, so we'll just average it at a good 180 which is nothing for a brownie, in my opinion.  If you omit the chocolate chips or don't add as many, you sinner you, then that would cut a good amount of calories as well.  Some of us were happy to be able to omit the oil and eggs though :)  I highly recommend!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

ADVOCARE 24 DAY CHALLENGE--it's time to tighten the booty

HEY GUYS.  I'm still alive.  I feel like I say that way too much...aka I'm not writing enough!  That could be good and could be bad.  It's probably a little bit of both--I'm content and yet I'm busy!  I have had some comments on my weight loss, which I am quite surprised because it's only about 5 lbs on average and I'm barely down a size but I'll take 'em!  Remember that moderation thing...yeah, still slowly working!  I plan on being here for a good bit of time yet to continue to see results so I'm happy with my path.

So the food is good and the exercise is okay, but still trying to keep up.  I recently just got promoted to Assistant Manager at my Under Armour (woot woot) which has been much anticipated.  So I'll finally have a decent amount of dough flowing through my bank account.  It's a good feeling moving up with a company that you've put so much into and no offense to those, but it feels good passing people by who have been in one position for as long as I've been in two and now onto my third.  HARD WORK AND PATIENCE PAYS OFF GUYS.  I feel like people act like it's not cool to work hard and like take your job seriously; it actually really pisses me off because it's actually really lame to suck at your job and still expect to get paid for sucking when other people are doing the same job, not sucking, and getting paid the same.  Anyways, mini rant was obviously necessary, so that's going well and I started my second to last semester so I'm almost done with school.  I finally feel like I'm in a good place! YAY.

So, now that you're updated, whoever even reads this, I am trying to get people to do a 24 day challenge with me!  Steve and I have started an 8 week growth program (muscle growth that is, I shouldn't have to clarify should I?)  The program is one I attached on a previous blog post if you're interested.  Along with that, I'm going to do a 24 day challenge nutrition supplement weight loss/tighten up program through AdvoCare after we get back from wedding season/vacation.  I'm trying to recruit some people to do it with me to hold each other accountable!!  AdvoCare basically supplies nutritional products for anyone from meal replacement bars/shakes for weight loss, to energy supplements, vitamins, protein, etc.  It's all about becoming better and performing better and maintaining a healthy lifestyle!  The average weight loss for those who do the challenge is 12 pounds, 11 inches.  Which is awesome, and you still get to eat food, which is extremely necessary to my life.  That and shopping, but that's another blog in itself.

If you're interested, comment or find me socially and I'll fill you in!  Here's some links to check it out:

AdvoCare 24 Day Challenge Information/Meal Plans

If you want to check out some of the products:

Advocare Products and Info

I shall be back with updates and I will be posting day to day when I start the challenge.  I know you all can't wait.  My life is so exciting!

Monday, July 15, 2013

straight forward--BE HAPPY

so i've really been working on being happy.  as much as i hate my job right now and can't do much about that, i am finally in a good place with my fitness, my eating, my love, and my life.  i wanted to post this "progress" picture from after my run today to basically say that regardless of if you are like me and continuing a life long process of beating my eating disorder into the ground or are new to fitness and want to lose weight or tone up, all you need is patience and a positive outlook.  losing weight isn't a five minute issue.  it is a life change if you want to keep it off.  it is about being consistent and allowing yourself to make mistakes.

case and point:  i have been moderating everything recently, but last night i had TWO homemade burgers and baked curly fries.  i have never eaten two burgers in my life haha and i remember thinking that on my second, but i was starving because i didn't get a chance to eat at work.  regardless i am not ashamed because i will never do that repeatedly.  that's a one time thing.  and maybe i'll pig out in like a month.  who cares.  that's life.  you cannot and will not succeed if you expect to be perfect for the rest of your life, every damn day.  if that's what you want to do, i'm not hating, go for it, but if you like beer and burgers and ice cream, let yourself slip up.  life is more fun that way.

that's all. happy summer

Monday, April 15, 2013

spaghetti squash just blew my mind. meatless monday

so i've seen a lot of posts on pinterest about using spaghetti squash as,well, spaghetti.  i have to say i was somewhat skeptical.  i mean i love all squash, but in place of pasta?!  like seriously, there's no replacement for pasta.  so we bought a spaghetti squash at the store one day, which was surprisingly steve's idea, and i finally cooked it today.  the results literally blew. my. mind!  and it was extremely easy to make, although you really gotta put some muscle into splitting it in half.  the texture is perfect for spaghetti and for those trying to incorporate vegetables into their diets, it's the perfect substitution!

all i did to cook mine was preheat the oven to 375, spray a baking sheet with some cooking spray, put the squash rind side up, and pop it in the oven for 30 minutes.  depending on the size of your squash, the cooking time may be increased or decreased. then once it's cool enough to handle, take a fork and essentially scratch at the squash and it just turns into this spaghetti-ish, strandy, vegetable.  it's great!  i tasted it with a little salt and it tastes good too.  still has that vegetable taste, but for those starting to eat healthier it's something you have to adjust to anyway.

i sauteed up some peppers and mushrooms, added meat crumbles, and some sauce and voila dinner is served!

Monday, April 8, 2013


well it's april.  and apparently april in virginia is like july in pennsylvania.  do you know what that means?  I HAVE WASTED SO MUCH TIME!  apparently here you have to get into shape right after christmas.  i am so not ready for this weather.  i have been eating like a fat cow.  and by that i have been eating fat cow aka burgers.  way too many greasy, delicious burgers.  and what is a burger without a beer.  i am awful!  but it tastes so good!

so, seriously, it's officially time to get my ass into summer/bikini/minimal clothing at all times shape.  i really do blame my shape right now on lack of nutrition being put into my body.  i mean there's been a lot of food shoved down my pie hole but not nutrition.  and that's probably being hard on myself.  i really try not to eat like the typical american does these days.  i don't eat fast food unless it's like chipotle or subway or pot belly, which okay still fast food, but not mcfatassolds or any of those joints.  i keep my fast food classy?  there's me justifying my choices again.  but seriously i probably eat better than the average bear, but that's not how i want to eat.  i know what's right and i know what's wrong and there's no problem in indulging, but not everyday! or even every other day!  like once a week if i'm gonna try and be hot and healthy.

so since today's weather blew my mind.  i need to start blowing my body away.  i think i'm going to attempt a juice cleanse next week.  i've done it before where it's been straight juice with fruits and vegetables thrown in when i need something solid.  the time i did it i lasted about a week.  the only reason i quit was because i just wanted like a real meal.  but honestly you feel pretty good on them because of all the nutrients you get.  now when i say juice, you have to include juice with vegetables.  nowa days there's plenty of options out there.  when i did my first one i chose mostly naked juices for on the go and i would blend up frozen fruit when i had the time.  i'm not sure how many calories i was taking in, probably under 1000, but they were nutrient dense calories which does make a difference.

has anyone heard or tried the Blue Print Cleanse ?  I've heard tid bits about it and did some research and it seems pretty sound.  it is pretty expensive though so i don't think i'll be doing it for more than 3 days. but i really want to try it, just to see how an actual cleanse makes me feel.  like i said i felt pretty good on my other one and that was back in my freshman year of college when i was playing volleyball/working out pretty regularly.  i don't want to cleanse just to lose weight or really because of that at all.  i want to prepare my body for a new diet and by diet i just mean cutting out the crap.  i also want my energy back.  it's amazing how you can tell your body is responding to what you're eating.  i already know i don't sleep well when i eat close to bed time, but yesterday, let's just say i had two bad meals, and i probably had about 4 hours between eating and going to bed and i slept horribly.  that shit is not doing anything for my functioning especially when that's working 50 hours a week and doing my school work and cleaning and cooking and working out.  i need energy!!  so cleanse i shall and prepare i am.  (yoda?)

so i ran outside today, obviously.  i didn't make it very far because i'm still not super trust worthy of my area just in the sense i don't know it well enough.  but it felt good none the less and now i am making a scrumptious, summertime-esque meal--strawberry chicken salad. YUM!

MY strawberry chicken salad--

I tend to look at recipes and just kind of go off of them--i'm sure i've said that 5 times now. so today's salad had:

chicken breast--enough for two or three because steve eats for two--you can bake or sautee however you please.  i only seasoned mine with a tiny bit of blackening for some kick and salt and pepper
strawberries roughly chopped
mixed greens of your choice--i have organic 50/50 baby spinach and spring mix and the more the merrier!
chopped pecans
fresh goat cheese--you could probably substitute with others.  i was looking for gorganzola but i couldn't find any.  i'm happy with the goat though, it's so creamy!

raspberry vinaigrette would have been my go to dressing but steve is extremely strange and doesn't have a big sweet tooth so i just made a balsamic vinaigrette--1 part balsamic vinegar 3 parts oil--salt and pepper, a smidgen of sugar, and some garlic powder (fresh garlic would be better but we're out--terrible)

throw it all together and voila, easy, delicious, summertime meal.  and if you have left over chicken, it'd be an easy lunch or on the go/take to work meal. SO GOOD.

Friday, February 22, 2013

oatmeal banana raisin pancakes!

i absolutely love starchy breakfast foods--waffles pancakes muffins.  it's a guilty pleasure for sure.  nowadays, my guilty conscience doesn't really let me eat those foods though unless i know exactly what's in them or i feel like i'm going to like offend someone ha.  so today i was craving pancakes, which happens a whole hell of a lot.  i've been experimenting with recipes, more using protein powder for like a post workout snack or something to have instead of chocolate, but i wanted something a little more legit for breakfast.  i have seen the recipe for the biggest loser's oatmeal pancakes so i can't take complete credit for my recipe, but i definitely just used that to go off of.

Here's the link for that recipe:
Biggest Loser Oatmeal Pancakes

So it basically calls for oats egg whites cottage cheese and some flavoring--cinnamon, vanilla.

MY recipe, I used:

1 cup steel cut oats (just what I have here in the kitchen)
1 cup liquid egg whites (about 4 egg whites)
1 egg
1 banana (this is in place of cottage cheese since we don't have any, could try greek yogurt too)
2 tbsp PB2 (I seriously put this in everything)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup/a handful of raisins

Turn the skillet to medium heat and spray your pan with PAM or whatever you want to use.  Butter is always good, I just wanted to avoid the extra calories.

Mash up the banana in a bowl, doesn't have to be super smooth.  You can also put the ingredients in a blender; unfortunately the only one I have is small and probably wouldn't fit, so I just do it by hand. Either works.  Add the oats, egg, egg whites and PB2 and whisk until combined.  Then stir in the cinnamon and raisins.

Cook them up in the skillet and voila, you have a healthy pancake alternative.  The only thing I think would make a difference in my recipe is using actual egg whites from eggs.  Liquid egg whites caused mine to spread away from the oat mixture when I poured them in the pan.  I think using real egg whites would help keep it all together better.

Mine made 4 pancakes, I made them rather big though.  Probably should make about 6, or 3 servings, as per the Biggest Loser recipe.

If you make them big like I did, about 4 pancakes, it's about 257 calories per pancake.  If you make them the normal size, ha, it's only about 171 calories per pancake.  If you don't want the raisins, that would make them less caloric as well.  Either way, a healthy alternative to regular full fat, processed flour pancakes.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

healthy changes in the kitchen

so having to buy my own groceries has been fun yet way too tempting.  i have to admit that in the first two weeks of moving out of my parents house we bought some...for lack of a more perfect word...shit.  like i actually let us buy doritos.  i'm so ashamed.  anyways, we got that kick out of the way.  i'm sure none of that helped with my whole weight thing, which i'm obviously realizing, so now we and by we it's probably more me since guys can eat whatever the hell they want and like lose weight, buying healthy foods.

today has been a good day to start.  i decided instead of dieting which literally lasted like 3 days, i'm just going back to enjoying food and just trying to lose the whole cow-grazing syndrome i tend to get into, especially when i'm bored.  i woke up extra early today--don't work till 1 so i normally sleep in till about 8--but i got up around 630 before steve left so i could get my HW done and get a sensible workout in.  i'm on this big english muffin kick.  like i don't know what it is about them, i legitimately have to have them in the mornings or i'm not a good person to be around.  it must be those nooks and crannies.  who doesn't love those. that's gross i'm sorry.

anyways, they've been having some good sales on english muffins at the g-store and normally we get the whole wheat/light whole wheat ones, but unfortunately those ones weren't included in this weeks sale, so we got the cinnamon raisin and the whole grain (if you don't know whole grain doesn't mean much--you really do want to look for WHOLE WHEAT).   so i started the day with a cinnamon raisin EM with peanut butter and a banana. very budget friendly and within my healthy but good means.

after that i hit the books and got some BS done and then headed to gym.  i do love that i can walk to the gym.  it's legit like under half a mile away.  i got a half an hour done on the bike while i read some info for my other class (exercise phys is legit ripping me a new one).  then i did a pretty tough leg workout--

started in the smith machine with some lunges--3 sets of 10, started with 20 lbs on the bar and then went to 40 and then 50.  i really want to get some sexy legs so i need to push the weights.

then i did the leg press--3 sets of 12 followed by 3 sets of 12 calf raises on the same machine.

then since i wasn't with steve i did some girly things.  i did the add and abductor machine (inner and outer thighs/hip flexor machine--or the im spreading my legs please dont look at me machine--or simply put the slut machine).  then i did some kettle bell single leg cross dead lifts (i may have made that up but i don't feel like looking up the actual name; i know exactly what i'm saying, HA) and finished with some hamstring ball curls.

overall a decent workout.  i want to get in a routine so that i'm willing to spend a little more time at the gym though.  baby steps.

as i mentioned before, i've been on a protein smoothie kick.  today's menu consisted of a mocha protein shake

i have seen recipes on pinterest for these but never really thought to try it, mainly because i like to get some fruit in there.  but i gave it a whirl because i had left over coffee from this morning.

basically it consisted of:

1 c coffee
1 healthy choice vanilla frozen greek yogurt
1 scoop chocolate protein
4 ice cubes (needed more but i had none, naturally)
splash of half and half and dash of cinnamon

under 300 calories-depending on your protein-which is what i try to stick to

as i'm sitting here writing this i am on to lunch and i must say i did a good job.  i made a tuna sandwich--nothing fancy, just a basic sandwich.  i do use mayo i just try to do equal parts mayo and mustard to lower the cals a lil bit.  add tomato, spinach, and a pickle and that was that.

i had some edamame in the fridge that needed using up (we have so many vegetables it like forces me to eat them--try it, if you're poor you'll feel guilty wasting it)

so it threw those in a saute pan with a tsp of oil, some cajun seasoning and ranch seasoning and i have to say, they are DELICIOUS.  some thing i definitely plan on making again.  you really can make vegetables fun, seriously, i'm not lying.

this is the half eaten lunch--i couldn't resist, i was hungry.

Monday, February 18, 2013


oh hey blog, where have you been all my life? (you have to sing that like rihanna).  so clearly, i haven't blogged since, ohhh, 'nam.  it has been brought to my attention (cough cough ally--shoutout, i miss you!) and i suppose a lot has changed so i should probably get back to it.

so i don't live in PA anymore, yay!  check that wish off the list.  steve and i moved down here, arlington, va, end of november.  he got his first PT job in college park, MD and they gave him a potential start date of nov 19th-ish, so i freaked out and looked into transferring to a UA down here.  well that happened, i am still an associate manager and i am working at the potomac mills mall in woodbridge, va.  i pretty much started working, scratch that, I DID start working the morning after we got here.  we didn't even get to move into our apartment that night because we hit traffic and missed the realtor's hours.  so that was annoying.  steve actually didn't start working until we had lived here for about a month because it was a pain in the ass to get his PA license transferred to MD.  so we were legitimately living off of my income, which let me just tell you what i make in a month is what our rent costs--not including electric, for the first month.  that and our credit cards, so it wasn't the easiest start.

needless to say it is what it is and here we are.  we live off of columbia pike, about two miles from arlington and honestly it's great.  we can walk to pretty much anything we need--gym, groceries, bars, etc., so that's awesome.  our apartment is small but perfect really.  just a one bedroom, which due to the lack of couch that we own, is really a studio with a huge empty closet/laundry room without the washer/dryer part.  so our bed has been in the living room since we got here or else we'd be doing it hippy style and watching tv from the floor on the beautiful rug i thankfully splurged on.

this is a picture of the outside when we moved here in the fall.  pretty classy joint eh?

anyways, steve finally started working and making money.  he got a nice little sign on bonus so we have lived somewhat comfortably, but with the bills and trying to get out of credit card debt we've got a ways to go there.

as far as my fitness and eating goes, i've been okay, but the stress has been eating me alive and i've actually gained like 7 lbs since i moved.  i cannot express to you how bitter i am about that either.  WE WALK EVERYWHERE WTF IS GOING ON.  sorry rage black out.  no but really the store i transferred to has been like hanging by a thread since i got there.  i came in and basically all of the previous management staff had left, so there was the assistant manager who had only been there a week or two when i got there and another associate manager who had been there for going on 5 or 6 months. so staff wise we were okay, but the ASM had already worked her ass of to get the store in some kind of  shape and she did a great job but she was basically doing it all by herself.  i like to think i helped when i got there, giving that i have a pretty smart head on my shoulders and know how things go since i've been with the company for almost 2 years.  so things were okay, frustrating, but okay.  then the other associate manager ended up being let go so there was only two of us.  that's somewhat where the stress started for me.  knowing there were only 2 of us meant working more hours and taking on more responsibility. it was just us 2 running the store for about two weeks.  we had a store manager that we were just eagerly waiting to start, but even then, the first week he was there was just going to be training so it'd basically be another week of really just us two working.

don't get me wrong, i love UA and the products, but i do not love working in retail.  it pays well and is somewhat easy to move up into, but honestly if i were to get promoted i'm not sure i would take it.  especially moving to a store down here since corporate is right around the corner.  there are a lot more random visits and visits in general and i don't care enough to have the pressure on my shoulders all the time.  i can definitely see myself working in corporate, i just hope i can wait it out for as long as that may take.

anyways, so work has been stressful and meanwhile all this is happening, obviously i'm in school, and classes started up again, which is just one more thing i have to worry about, and then there's the cleaning and the cooking.  it has definitely been a lot to jump into and i'm not settled in enough that i've been able to get my head straight on my weight and food.

i have had a couple episodes of binging, which has led me to really want to diet, and i do want to diet, but i don't think that i'm far along enough in my journey to recovery to be able to restrict my eating.  i really need to just get into a routine and not stress so much.  i'm hoping i'll finally be able to take some PTO soon; i legitimately haven't had more than one full weekend off since i moved, and that's been rough especially since steve has weekends off.

on a positive note, i've been quite the little chef lately!  i've been on a big protein smoothie kick for post workouts and making protein pancakes/muffins for sweets instead of constantly craving chocolate and indulging in those cravings.  i've also been a good housewife and made some yummy meals that have been healthy but boyfriend approved.

hopefully i'll be able to take some time out of my days to share some of my recipes with you--i'm definitely cooking more than i used to and i don't like to follow recipes, so i just wing it, and come up with some good stuff that i'd love to share :)  stay tuned!