We are on Day 17 and officially over halfway done with Whole30! This round has really been easier than the previous one we did. I haven’t had any major cravings or miss anything too terribly. The meals we have made have been pretty good, we haven’t had any major flops. I have tried making meals I never thought I would and can be creative with the ingredients I have on hand. I’ve also introduced new spices and seasoning that I wouldn’t have looked twice at in the grocery store.

I can tell my stamina is getting better at the gym. I’m much more alert in class and can push farther than I ever could before. My muscle strength still needs improvement but I can at least keep up at a pace I am happy with. I made it to the gym 4 times last week, which is my ultimate records thus far. The classes are pretty intense, so my body is usually sore after each one. That coupled with laziness had me going twice a week, maybe three times if I pushed it. I think I have figured out a good routine and hope I can stick with it. Being more refreshed and alert in the mornings has helped. Even when I wake up tired, I am ready to go within 10 minutes. My body doesn’t like me sleeping in past 7 anymore either.

The moodiness definitely lingered longer than I anticipated. I’m slowly starting to feel better about it but every so often I’ll get a snarky feeling. I don’t have a great temper so I have been trying to catch myself before it gets to any terrible point. Exercising more has helped keep the endorphins high and the moodiness at bay.

We tried some pretty great meals this past week. I also got to break out the veggetti which was fun. Cauliflower has also been my staple in meals this week.

Chicken Tikka Masala – this was a homerun for us. I have never cooked Indian food before so I was a bit nervous but this recipe was delicious. I would absolutely make this again.

 

Cauliflower Pizza – we could take this or leave this. The recipe was good, but I don’t think it is really up our alley. We put proscuttio, spinach and mushrooms on ours.

 

Pork Two Different Ways – we did a Chimichurri Pork Belly and a regular roasted pork tenderloin. Both were really good. I don’t usually cook with pork unless it is sausage or bacon so it was a nice change. We broiled both and paired it with cauliflower mash and asparagus.

 
Beef Bulgogi – this will also make it into our normal rotation of recipes. It was delicious! I didn’t make the spicy mayo but the beau did put an egg and sriracha on his and absolutely loved it. I also accidentally grabbed squash instead of a cucumber for the picked cucumbers. It surprisingly worked out pretty well.

They are telling us there will be a huge snow storm on Friday through the weekend, we’ll see how much we actually end up getting. The good thing with Whole30 is that our fridge is pretty stocked so we will be alright if we are snowed in for a few days. Quite honestly, I wouldn’t hate it.


Today is Day 8 and I am officially in my cranky/moody phase. Everything annoys me. It’s not that I don’t feel good – I can definitely feel the changes starting (I feel better physically, I am sleeping better, etc.) but I can’t shake the annoyance. I know it’s just a phase but, man, it gets you sometimes. AND my office has bagel Monday every week.. STAYING STRONG!

The rest of the week went well. I am slowly getting back into a routine again. I made it to the gym 3 times last week and I’m hoping to increase that to 4 this week. On days I went to the gym, I made sure to go to bed at a decent hour and it absolutely made a difference. I wasn’t sluggish, I felt alert and was well rested. I attempted to do the same last night, but ended up not going to bed until about 12:30am. I was afraid I wouldn’t get up at 5:30am for my class but I was surprisingly just as alert as I had been all last week. That’s the biggest change I have noticed thus far.

I lost the workweek FitBit challenge, but I did hit 10,000 steps two days in a row! It was a feat to get those two days, let me tell you. I spent the evening doing laps around the condo with the dog following me thinking it was a game haha. The winner had over 66,000 steps M-F… I don’t think I hit 40,000. It was nice to have the little competition though to keep me motivated to walk.

Yesterday (day 7) tested my patience every so slightly. I knew the crankiness was looming and wanted to do nothing more than be left alone with my book, dog and a blanket. The beau went to the Caps game (anyone see Ovi score his 500th goal? it was beautiful) so I had the house to myself for the evening. I started meal prepping for the week/dinner that evening and everything was going as it should…. until I started making the breakfast sausages. Our smoke alarms are really sensitive and we have vaulted ceilings, so they are virtually impossible to shut up once they get going. We have tried various methods to try and prevent it (leaving the balcony door open, having a fan going, having someone hold the fan as close to the smoke detector as possible) but they will inevitably go off. Yesterday, I was by myself tackle this lovely chore. How many times could it possibly go off in one meal? I lost count after 11. I was racing between the kitchen and the smoke detector to hold the fan up to it to make it stop… it was a disaster. I eventually gave up and put the breakfast sausages away to cook for another day and left my green beans extra crisp. At least my pork came out pretty well?

Check out what we have been eating and some great new recipes to try!

Day 3 – 1/6
Breakfast – Chia Seed Pudding
Lunch – Beef stew, cauliflower rice, roasted brussels sprouts (leftovers)
Dinner – Lettuce wrapped burgers topped with bacon and guacamole, roasted potatoes

Day 4 – 1/7
Breakfast – Aidell’s sausage and sauteed spinach
Lunch – Lettuce wrapped burgers topped with bacon and guacamole, roasted potatoes (leftovers)
DinnerPizza Spaghetti Squash Pie with some sauteed broccoli
I used this recipe to make the Italian sausage, I highly recommend it!

Day 5 – 1/8
Breakfast – Chia Seed Pudding
Lunch – Pizza Spaghetti Squash Pie (leftovers)
Dinner – Leftovers

Day 6 – 1/9
Breakfast – Aidell’s sausage and spinach / apple
Lunch – Steak with cauli mash and roasted broccoli (The beau makes AMAZING steak, I devoured it before I thought to take a photo of it…)
DinnerLemon and basil pork chops with cauli mash and roasted broccoli

We broiled instead of baked. I LOVE using the broiler. I think it keeps the meat juicy and tender while adding a nice crisp. 9/10, if it says to bake, we will use the broiler.

Day 7 – 1/10
I will admittedly say this was not the greatest eating day. I was cranky and feeling very snacky. I stayed compliant in everything I had, but the day consisted of chia seed pudding, roasted potatoes, plantain chips, carrots and guac. I did cook a great pork tenderloin (based on this recipe with my tweaks) for dinner, but in the midst of the fire alarms did not have the energy to get a photo.

I think I’m going to need to find a substitute for the chia seed pudding, it is not agreeing well with my stomach. I am also starting to think potatoes are my kryptonite and I might need to start re-evaluating how much I use them… which will be heartbreaking.

This coming week we are trying all new recipes, I’m excited to add some new meals to our collection.


Day 2 – 1/5
Breakfast – Aidells chicken and apple sausage, spinach and roasted potatoes / mini egg frittatas
Lunch – Steak fajita salads with roasted peppers and guacamole and plantain chips (leftovers)
Dinner – Spinach and shrimp stuffed salmon, roasted veggies, cauliflower rice

I still cannot come around to eggs, so the Aidells sausages are a staple for me when it comes to breakfast. I will usually make homemade sausage patties, but I don’t like to make them too too often and us get sick of them so I alternate. This week I made a big batch of sausage and spinach for breakfasts and will supplement with a chia seed pudding. The beau loves eggs and I found this great recipe from NomNomPaleo (definitely check her out) for mini egg frittatas wrapped in prosciutto. Huge hit with him! Super easy to make, convenient to bring to work, and delicious and filling.


I woke up this morning with a lot of energy surprisingly. My BFF and I are determined to start going to the gym again and I was eager to make sure we made it this morning. Ever since her wedding last September we have been struggling to get back on the exercise train. We started going to this fantastic gym in the area – they are just classes and each are focused on core, cardio and weights, similar to CrossFit. Each class is different and it kicks.your.butt. The first class we ever went to last April had us sore for 4 days and we were weirdly hooked. It pushes your limits and forces you to get out of your comfort zone and focus on mind over matter. I hadn’t been in about a week and have been very lax for too long. Needless to say it kicked my butt this morning. I’m looking forward to seeing how Whole30 will effect my performance and ability in class.

A friend of mine started a work week FitBit challenge and there are some competitive people in this race! I got my FitBit over Christmas and I am realizing just how little I move in a given day, especially when I’m at work. I spent the evening doing laps around the house just to get my step count up! I have the Charge HR and it’s been a great tool to see track my workouts and my sleep as well. I highly recommend it!

 


I have mixed feelings about you, Week 1. I am excited and scared and anxious. I guess it’s easier this time around because we know better of what to expect but the anticipation of it all gets to you sometimes. I know preparation is key and I will be very tired of the kitchen by the time we are done, but I’m excited for the challenge. I think the detoxing makes Week 1 the hardest and it gets slightly easier after that.

Pre-Whole30 – Grocery shopping for Whole30 is no joke. The beau and I spent 2.5 hours in 4 different grocery stores in order to get everything we needed. Costco for all the bulk items, Trader Joe’s for the smaller produce and any TJ specific items, WholeFoods for the more obscure items, and Giant for anything we couldn’t find in the above mentioned stores. We didn’t have any of the basics (coconut oil, ghee, etc), so this grocery trip was for everything we would ever need.

Once we got home, we cleared out everything in the fridge and cupboards that we weren’t going to eat or would not be good after 30 days. We then arranged our fridge. I wish I took a picture of it, the overly organized/OCD in me was very happy.

One of my favorite purchases of the day was the SodaStream Play. We go through so much sparkling water, the cost and the amount of plastic we were wasting was driving me nuts. Not to mention, we live on the third floor, so carrying the huge cases was no fun either. All in all it was more cost effective for us to buy the SodaStream. We were in Costco and they had it for the right price (does anyone else get a high from getting things cheaper at Costco?!). The beau fought me a bit because we do have limited counterspace but in the end he realized it would be a better investment for us. Needless to say, we love it. I can make sparkling water whenever I want and it tastes practically the same as the fancy waters. I have also recently learned (which I’m sure is really old news and I am slow to the party) that you can exchange the carbonators at local retailers for cheaper. This blew my mind and made my life. I fully plan on taking advantage of BB&B’s 20% coupons whenever I need a refill.

Day 1 – 1/4/16
Breakfast – Aidells chicken and apple sausage , spinach and roasted potatoes
Lunch – Crockpot beef stew with cauliflower mash (one of our favorites to make)
Dinner – Steak fajita salads with roasted peppers and guacamole and plantain chips from Trader Joe’s (also a favorite staple)


I cannot stress this enough to you, you HAVE to try the seasoning we used for the fajitas. It is something we will probably put into weekly rotation. We got the skirt steak from Whole Foods (damn you Whole Foods for having such incredible meat), marinated it overnight and threw it on the grill when we were ready for dinner. AMAZING.

A lovely find we had from the previous Whole30 was the power of the Ninja. It’s the only thing I use if I need to mash or dice or chop anything. It is especially usefully when we make cauli mash – it makes it extra smooth and creamy. We just have the little one and it works perfectly for us.

Day 1 was pretty easy, but it is probably the easiest day. Last time, I was extremely exhausted from the carbs detox and I expect I will have the same this time. It’s much easier cooking for two than four, I will say that. And the beau is very helpful in the kitchen, whether it be prepping something or cleaning. It makes it a lot easier and more manageable than doing it alone.

I think this post is long enough… week 1 to be continued.


Clearly I suck at the blogging thing… or maybe I just don’t have enough to write about. Whatever it is, I’m back again for another go at this. Just in time for:

WHOLE30 ROUND 2

Yep, we are starting again. This time it is just me and the beau (who I have officially moved in with) and we are on a mission for a healthy 2016. We both let ourselves go in the second half of last year and it’s time to get back in the swing of things. I took my measurements for the first time since we did Whole30 last year and they weren’t pretty. But I have confidence that we will start feeling better soon.

After Whole30 the first time (read about it here) we felt so great about ourselves! We had so much more energy, no bloating, etc. Our downfall was we didn’t do the reintroduction period, we just jumped in eating whatever we wanted. So we don’t know exactly how our bodies reacted to certain foods. With that, the cravings came back and as life got busier, we stopped paying attention to what we ate and just ran with whatever was in front of us. Fast forward to now and you have two bloated, cranky folks. We are committed to doing it right this time, including the reintroduction phase. These are lifestyle changes that I believe we can take and stay consistent in doing.

We officially began January 4th. We are sticking mainly to the recipes we are familiar with this week, but have a whole rack of new ones waiting to be tested. Thank you Pinterest!

Check back for updates and how we fared through Week 1!


I can’t believe it is June already! This year has been a whirlwind. My entire life fell apart over a year ago at this point. And it took me a minute to recognize that I didn’t even realize it. The thing I thought was going to destroy me was the best decision I ever made for myself. It’s amazing what a year can do and how quickly it can pass. I have learned more about myself, what I want and what I don’t. And what I will stand for and finding my own voice. I’ve learned that it’s okay for me to go after what I want and I don’t have to stay in one place just because it’s the norm. And that is not just in relationships, but in all aspects of life. I’ve taken more risks and really sat down and thought about what I want from the future. I met a man who loves me and challenges me and makes me want to be better, not just for him, but for myself. I have found some of my forever friends and realized it’s okay if people fade away. Sometimes they are only there for a chapter, not your entire story. I have cherished my family more, every hardship has made us closer. I have a new sense of adventure and passion that I want to follow. I am happier than I have been in a long time. I finally remember what it feels like to be me.

I wouldn’t be where I am without my family and friends. Their support through all this has been unfathomable and I will never be able to thank them enough. I can only hope I am there for them as much as they have been there for me.

2015 is going to be a big year for everyone. Friends are getting married, others are buy houses and doing more grown-up things. Life is falling into place and I couldn’t be happier or more excited for everyone. There is a new breath of life in the air and it is so refreshing.

I hope everyone else is having just as great of a 2015 thus far, I cannot wait to see what the future holds.


Life is Good

16Mar15

There comes a point when you are so far down a hole that you cannot possibly think you will ever see the light again. That you cannot possibly go one more day through this because it is eating every part of your soul.

But guess what? That day does come. And when you realize that day is here, it is the most exhilarating feeling you could imagine.

I am finally at a point in my life that I can say I’m happy. Through all the turmoil, there is finally a steady peace. It hit me all of a sudden one day – life is good, there is no stress and life is moving forward.

There are amazing people in my life and I continue to meet new and exciting friends. I started a new job and gaining new experience. My family is of the utmost importance to me and I will try everyday to make their lives better. The ex left and I blocked all communication to keep that chapter closed. Two of my best friends are getting married and I get to be a part of the process. I am slowly getting to a place where I am financially okay and I am not stressing every second of every day. And last but not least, I have an incredible man in my life who makes every experience that much better.

I don’t know what I did to get so lucky, but I am incredibly thankful for all of the blessings that have been brought to my life.




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