Day 8 – Eat Clean Meltdown…

So yesterday…wasn’t my best day in this eating clean journey. I started out pretty strong…with a banana, handful of almonds, and a scoop of peanut butter. Had greek yogurt for my mid morning snack and lunch was tilapia from Sunday night with grapes. And that’s where the good news ends.

I went to the doctor yesterday morning because I’ve been having back problems for a while now. I have a pulled muscle in my back between the ribs and not allowed to do upper body weights or workouts for 3-4 weeks. Anything that makes it hurt…stop doing. Well that’s going to be difficult, because everything makes it hurt! It’s in the worst spot possible, mid back (thoracic) right where you would turn or breathe, or do anything besides sleep. Which – that is uncomfortable too. So, now I’m icing it and sleeping on my right side…which I don’t like! I’m a left side sleep…just am. haha.

Anyway, so that put me in a piss poor mood. I dealt with it via a little self-destuctive behavior. In the form of very unclean foods, a jalapeno cheddar hotdog and spicy nacho dorito chips, on my way to class last night. I’m so ashamed! did make me feel better. And that’s not all of it…I ate a snickers (yes, a snickers!) during my last class. Ugh. Considering the fact that I can’t really workout to my fullest ability right now, don’t you think I wouldn’t eat bad foods?! I guess we all get a little crazy in the moment.

Well, that little episode and the thought of having to post it, for all who read to see, has made me determined to nix the behavior before letting it swallow me. I’m going to focus on my running (that’s lower body!) and my leg workouts. I’ll be a little unbalanced…maybe, but at least I won’t be sitting around eating bon bons or snickers! 🙂 One good thing I did yesterday was sign-up for Dam-to-Dam! It’s a 20K on June 1, 2013….scary!! The longest race I’ve done was a 7K about a year ago..and it was hell! I usually stick to 5K distances. So, I joined a new running group out of Ankeny to help me stay consistent with training and I look forward to meeting on Saturdays for runs and doing fun runs with them this summer!!

Tonight I’ll be running 3.5 miles after work and focusing on being smart about food choices!

Focus, Kristin. Focus.

Have a healthy day and stay strong!

Here’s a little motivation to me and you going. 🙂





Eat Clean – Weekend Review!

This last weekend was fairly successful. The boyfriend and I made a few new things, but not what we had planned to make! 🙂 He made some delicious chocolate, granola and blueberry cookies. Except I think we both ate too many! 🙂 Most of the meals this weekend consisted of adding vegetables to things already cooked earlier in the week. I had some ground beef that had been browned. We added vegetables to that one meal and then next meal put it in with some eggs and veggies. We finished leftover meatloaf and sweet potatoes and splurged on popcorn for movie night.

I did make some tilapia and sweet potato chips on Sunday night. They were simply devine!! It was super easy and quick to the make the tilapia – although I think I needed to cook it a little longer. The next day (Monday) when I reheated it for lunch, it actually tasted better than the night before!! I also worked on my food photography this weekend, so hopefully my picture quality will start improving!

We also experimented with juicing this weekend. It wasn’t nearly as bad as I anticipated. First we did a few shots of different items before combining. We tasted carrots, beets, and ginger – then mixed it together. It wasn’t bad! But we added a little bit too much ginger…but still not a bad drink. I had 2 or 3 more juice drinks over the weekend. The boyfriend juiced right before teaching fitness classes and said it gave him crazy good energy all the way through!

Make good choices! 🙂


Juiced Carrot Shots!


Juiced Apple – it’s orange b/c we didn’t wash it out after the carrots. It was delicious! 🙂


Baked Tilapia! Yuuuum!! Nice and spicy. 🙂


5am Workout? No Way!!

If you know my personally, you may know that I’m not a morning person. I’m a up-all-night, sleep-all-day kind of girl. At least, I was. For those of you that don’t know me, I’m sure you know someone just like me or maybe this describes you. Here’s what went through my head in the evenings:

“It’s 10:00pm and my favorite show just started on TV. Well, it’s not my favorite but I do love it. Ok, I don’t love it but I do enjoy it. Alright, what else is on. Oh crap! It’s 11:00pm ‘all of the sudden.’ (we all know that was NOT ‘all of the sudden’, what did you think would happen after watching an hour long show??) Alright, if I go to bed right now and wake up at 7am…1, 2, 3, 4, 5..I’ll get 8 hours of sleep! Oh that’s pretty good, one more show. The next morning roles around…7am alarm clock. The “I want to die” feeling flows through my soul. And I would say to myself, dangit…I did it again, I really need to go to bed earlier.”

This was my routine every. single. night. until about 1 year ago. At that time, I decided that it would be a good idea to act like an adult and wake up at a decent time. When I decided that I would like to be an adult and rise at a normal time..I had to make small changes. It would have been unreasonable to immediately start waking up at 5am everyday and work out before work.

My first goal was 7:45am. Just wake up at 7:45am. Once I accomplished that for 2+ weeks, my goal was 7:30am…just wake up and get out of bed at 7:30am. I wasn’t completely alone on this journey either. About half-way through, I found a running partner who wanted to do 6:00am runs. I was used to waking up at 7am by then, so I figured that 6am wouldn’t be too far off. Plus, I had someone depending on me to show-up (this made a HUGE difference for me). My latest venture (teaching a 5am group fitness class) really forces me to wake up and be alert and energetic in the wee hours of the morning. Not only are people counting on me to show-up and lead them in a work-out, but my job depends on it. Talk about motivation! Nowadays, if I’m teaching I wake up at 3:30am and if just working out I push it back to 4/4:15am. If you really want something, you can most certainly do it. Find your own motivations and encouragements to make it happen!

It has taken about a year, but if I had given up a year ago or tried to do too much at once I’d still be where I started a year ago, waking up at 8am and late for work every day. Even though it took a long time (in my eyes), I’ve reached my goal!

What goal do you have that seems overwhelming or impossible? Can it be broken down into small steps that are accomplished over time? Remember, life isn’t about getting it perfect and a weight-loss, budget plan, or self-improvement journey is just that – a journey. If you reach the end goal as soon as you start, what was the point of taking the ride? Have patience with yourself and every month, every week, and every day strive for improvement. Be better than you were yesterday. Not perfect, but better.

Live well,

Personal Mantra

Hard to overcome cravings on the weekends? Don’t have the energy to exercise? Develop a personal mantra to repeat to yourself whenever you are feeling down in the dumps or unmotivated!

My personal mantra:

If you want something you’ve never had, you’ve got to do something you’ve never done. (i.e. get out of bed at 5am!) Sometimes, I shorten it to: Do something you’ve don’t do! It took me about a year, but I’ve been working out at 5am consistently for the past several weeks and even teach a 5am yoga class now!!!


Another personal mantra:

“Fighters don’t quit, fighters don’t whine, they don’t complain. They do the work. DO THE WORK!” -Adapted from something Dolvett said to a contestant on Biggest Loser. I repeat this mantra when I feel lazy! =)

What’s your personal mantra???

Here are some of my favorites:

Healthy Budget

Healthy living is not only about your body, the amount and type of exercise, and the food you eat. It’s about your whole life. Everything that makes up your sphere of experience. Money is a very important element in everybody’s sphere. If it isn’t, lucky you. Whether you adore the world’s paper form of barter or you simply rely on it for survival, yet despise it, we all need it. Unless you live in the woods and actually use a traditional barter system, then you probably wouldn’t be reading this post anyway. However, even in an old-fashioned or traditional barter system, managing your goods so that you have plenty to supply your family and homestead with needs is budgeting. The term is up to you, budgeting, managing, organizing, it’s all relative and plays a vitall role in quality of life and satisfation with life.

Budgets typically scare most people. They are annoying, time consuming, stupid, and HARD! Why are budgets so difficult? It’s because putting every dime on paper forces you to be extremely honest with how juvenile we all act with money. It’s much like facing the scale after Thanksgiving and realizing how poorly disciplined you have been for the last month. Let’s face it, we all rationalize the couple weeks before and after Thanksgiving as Thanksgiving. It’s very difficult to change old habits and to fix ourselves. I find it even harder to “fix” myself when someone is pushing me to do it, because my foolish pride wants it to be my decision and not someone forcing me. It will take time to turn your pocketbook around, get out of debt, and live a financially healthy life. But! You CAN do it. I know you can.

It took me several years to put all the info I absorbed into motion. Of course, I could fool myself and pretend that I was dealing with money well. But once I sat down and added up all the numbers: income, fixed expenses, and spending. I looked around and asked myself, where the heck am I getting money to pay everything?!! I pay more in expenses than I earn every month – how is that possible?? Oh that’s right…I have a credit card. And that bill is…well was very large. I’ve always wanted to be good with money, but it never really hit home exactly how to do so until I started listening to financial podcasts while working. They automatically download on iTunes, they are free, and they don’t take up any extra time. I just hit play and go about my daily work while having a little budgeting wizard constantly in my ear. After about a month of listening, I finally sat down and put things on paper. For me, paper = an Excel document. Do it however suits you. I’m not saying I’m perfect, but since June 2011, I’ve paid off almost $12,000 in debt. I’m $2,000 away from being debt-free except for the house and I can’t wait!! Here are a few tips to getting started:

Budgeting Tip #1: Budgeting Friend

Find a program, mentor, or friend that will be in your corner as you go through the journey to becoming debt-free. It is going to be long, arduous, and very difficult. At times, you’ll want to throw in the towel and run up every credit card you can get your hands on. Other times, you will just want to cry because you’re working working working and still not done. In those moments, you need a resource to revive you. Personally, I listen to Dave Ramsey ( daily and in those moments of desperation. He almost always has at least one caller that is celebrating their journey to debt freedom. It reminds me that I was to do my debt-free scream so bad that I get right back on track!

Budgeting Tip #2: Be Honest

Once you find a mentor to follow and inspire you and/or a friend to turn to for budgeting advice and support, it is important to take a very honest took at your spending habits and the reason behind those habits. Just like many people gain weight to hide other insecurites and traumas, many people do the same with money. When I was growing up, I had a single working mom with a modest income. While we weren’t dirt poor, money was tight most of the time. We did all those little tricks to save money. When I turned 18 and had the power of credit cards at my fingertips with the siren songs of credit card companies with 0% interest, 5% cash back, etc. incentives…I went into a spending frenzy! Looking back, I think I did that because I always had to say ‘no’ to friends and coming along on trips, etc and so I never wanted to do that as an adult. However, I didn’t have any money!!! I really had to do some soul searching and be brutally honest with myself and why I was on this potentially destructive debt building path.

Budgeting Tip #3: Be Vocal

It’s important that the people in your life, friends and family, understand your goals for the future. That includes your financial goals and how those goals will affect them. I don’t recommend sending them on a guilt trip to despise city, but it is important to share with those closest to you how important it is for you to stay steadfast in your goals. The pursuit of those goals does mean that you can’t go out to eat, you can’t go on a family vacation, and it may even mean you can’t get gifts and presents for every birthday and holiday. Sometimes, you will have to tell the same people no several times. Don’t be too hard on them, they aren’t on the same journey as you so their perspective is different. A gentle reminder of your goals should be enough to call the wolves off.

While you are being honest with yourself and vocal about your goals to others, keep in mind that you are not going to be perfect…but don’t let that be your excuse to fail. It’s a delicate balance between being flexible enough to readjust (I’ve tried several different budgeting techniques and it ever few months) but not allowing yourself to give into defeat. Feel free to share your stories below and I would be happy to support and mentor anyone in need!

Live Healthy,