Friday, August 31, 2012

Foodie Penpals - Month 1 :)

So August was a crazy month for me -- lots of changes and new things.  One of my favorite things I did this month was sign up for Foodie Penpals over at The Lean Green Bean -- here are the rules:

Here’s a detailed explanation of the program:
-On the 5th of the month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email. It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal and get their mailing address and any other information you might need like allergies or dietary restrictions.
-You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail. On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal!
-The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treats! The spending limit is $15. The box must also include something written. This can be anything from a note explaining what’s in the box, to a fun recipe…use your imagination!
-You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size and how fragile they are. (Don’t forget about flat rate boxes!)
-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers. If you’re a reader and you get paired with a blogger, you can choose to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received. If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for that month.
- Foodie Penpals is open to US, Canadian residents & UK residents. 

Click HERE to join the fun :)

So now for my FUN part!!

This month I was paired to send to Lindsay -- you can find her at Cotter Crunch to see what I sent to her! I had Stacy from Creating Sweet Smiles who sent stuff to me!

When I opened my box -- here is what I saw :)

Ok - so look above. That is all my AWESOMENESS (yes, I am still using that word).  So she sent me an awesome note...
...which told me how I pushed her outside of the normal thinking for her by stating I was going Paleo :)  I loved the note! MADE my day!!  Part of it told me about these...
...those are totally DELICIOUS cookies that she did not send me the recipe for because she wasn't sure they were 100% paleo (ps I still want the recipe b/c they were AMAZING and I'm sure not a bad cheat treat).  The main thing to know is chocolate and almond flour = HEAVEN!! Let me we have green chile beef jerky..., if you know me, you know how I do with spicy; however, this is good! A little hot, but really good! Next up, chili powder...
...what was cool about this is Stacy sent me some recipes to try with the powder.  The eggs were fabulous!! I'll post that later today! I am also looking forward to trying this on some of my meat! There is still some stuff to go (amazing, right? And all of it was NEW to me)...
This is a first for me. I had not had roasted seaweed, but it was really good.  A nice option for a snack and major goodness in it to.  The next item...
was very exciting for me as I've been wanting to try coconut milk for a while now.  This gave me a open shot to trying it.  I am definitely hooked and looking forward to trying to drink this and put it in other things. Last, but not least (and I honestly haven't tried it yet...I'm too nervous for what to put it on)... fabulous is this?!? I have heard nothing but awesome stuff about this brand and about almond butter in general (hazelnut butter is new to me). 

Honestly, this whole process was way better and a lot more fun then I thought! It was like Christmas morning getting my box from Stacy and getting stuff together for Lindsay!

Can't wait for September :)



The Lean Green Bean

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Well Fed -- Paleo Recipes for People Who LOVE to Eat

Have you ever been to a book signing? I hadn't...till tonight! It was AWESOME.  Alycia informed us about the opportunity to meet Melissa Joulwan.  She is FANTASTIC! She is the author of the blog --> The Clothes Make the Girl and the paleo cook book -- Well Fed - Paleo Recipes for People Who LOVE to Eat.  I've been following her blog for a while now.  Her & her husband follow the Whole 30.  After the recommendation from Alycia I read the book "It Starts with Food"  by Melissa & Dallas Hartwig.  It was awesome and really helped me to see somethings that I do with food and steps I need to change.

Anyways - side step there -- Melissa Joulwan was awesome.  Super friendly and personable.  There were some food and snacks, Paleo of course :)  She then told us how she got to where she is.  Kinda of cool too because she also started with Weight Watchers. After that, she told us how she has done the Whole30 (which I start mine September 10th). She took questions from the crowd, gave us her favorite recipe from the book and some tips.

She was awesome! She also talked about the question and thoughts on girls and how they look at their self.  If you aren't happy with yourself, then nothing will matter.  There is not a set look.  I know the public tells us what we "should" look like, but if you are healthy and taking care of yourself, then you should be happy with that.  I look forward to keeping up with her journey and seeing where she goes (and me too!!).

Jill, Cathy, Melissa, Me & Alycia
How COOL is that!!!
Ok -- that is all for now! I will keep you posted on how the book works! Like she said - I'm starting simple the first week or two!! :)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Stressing Life...

We all have it.  Days that feel like nothing can go right.  Today was that day for me.  Funny too, because today really wasn't that bad.  But I got to talking to my mother about my budget and finances which always send me over the TOP!  I sometimes feel as though all I do is work.  Between both jobs, it can be slightly overwhelming.  Now don't get me wrong -- I love BOTH my jobs; however, sometimes there are days you just need a break.

I am sick of feeling like I am never catching up.  I have really got to buckle down and get smarter with my spending habits and goals.  I need to make a better determination between wants vs. needs.  I need to realize obtainable goals and ones that need to wait till I have a little more cushion in my life.  The end of 2012 seems to be bringing some awesome changes in my life....getting more financial savvy seems to be on the list too (as well as not stressing as much haha) :)

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Superhero Sunday

Whoever thought that I would be so happy changing my life to this extreme? I know I have said it once, twice or maybe three times; however, I LOVE CrossFit Aspire. It is the best decision I ever made. I think it is hard when you head into something like CrossFit.  I get it a lot from people -- I can't believe you do that, I could never do it, how hard is it, it's not for people like me, I don't want to get bulky, etc.  I'm not bulky - I'm not amazingly strong - I'm not a Superhero...YET!  They key is yet! I may not be able to do a pull-up or a full push-up; however, I know it WILL happen.  A lot of hard work and hopefully changing my diet/nutrition will pay off.  I know some people get overwhelmed at the thought of it, but anyone could do it.  That's the beauty of CrossFit. You can scale any movement to your ability, and once you get the movements down you'll kick tail!! Today (THANKS to Sharon for being a HUGE help and a kick ass judge) I got down the clean - got up to 100#!!!!!!! I am BEYOND stoked and very ready to push myself to new levels.

PS - I also want to just tell you how AMAZING of a group they are at CrossFit Aspire. I love it - making friends, and getting to know other people.  And to get to push everyone who in turn pushes you back! Today was a FABULOUS day!

Weekend workout recap --

Saturday started out with a awesome run with my Fleet Feet Marlton half marathon group -- we are now three weeks out from Rock 'n' Roll Philly -- and I can NOT wait to see this group run!! I love my interval ladies -- they really are amazing.  I've talked one of them, Jen, into running with me more and doing the Disney full marathon with me in January. Now, both Jen and Lauren are doing the Cooper Norcross Run the Bridge with me in November. 

Today's competition was OUTSTANDING!!

WOD 1 --> 750m row and push press till fail at 65#.

WOD 2 --> you had 10 minutes to do 4 rounds: 20 Wallballs (25#), 15 wallballs (14lbs -- for the record, they kicked my tail but as Justin said "you have to start pushing somewhere") and 10 burpees.  Ok - first, without Sharon, I would have NEVER finished the part I did.  Did I finish? No, I did not. I am not mad nor upset about it. I gave my all and that's all I want to do.  Funny how this WOD alone kicked my butt harder then my 8 mile run Saturday! haha

WOD 3 --> 6 minutes to get up to your max clean. It took me a while, but I did it.  Again, I had Sharon for my judge and she was my God send.  She helped pushed me and figure out.  Her help on my form made it 10x easier.  I got up to 100# and feel like I might have gotten more, but the time I figured it out time was up.

I didn't come in last so that was helpful :)

Paleo starts soon -- still trying to finish my book. TrueBlood & The Newsroom are over so bed time!



Friday, August 24, 2012

Friday Night Party...Or Not :)

I am for sure that I am no longer willing to stay where I am.  The more I read and try to learn about the world of food, the more I am sure that I am ready to make the next step.  I am ready to get better, stronger, faster at CrossFit and change my diet for good.  I am really excited for the nutrition information session at CrossFit Aspire and the 30 day challenge.  I am also currently reading It Starts With Food  -- it is very informational and I want to know more.  I am only up to the part on dairy, but I can't wait to read more!

Tomorrow is a nice run with my Fleet Feet Marlton half marathon program group.  We are 23 days our from the Philly Rock-n-Roll -- below is what our medals will look like.  I can not wait to see my group rock it! For some of them, it will be their first half marathon; however, for others it will be another race.

So, random for you - Brian called me Tuesday night and asked me to go the the Phillies game with him.  Of course I went (easy decision since they were playing my Reds).  It was a good time.  Brian is a good friend and I enjoy his company.  We seem to always have a good time when we hang out.

Ok -- that's all -- just thought I'd post a lil something :)  Ps look what we got for the store

How awesome are those? If you know me, you know how obsessed I am with cozies.  Also, Nicolella from school has got me HOOKED on Game of Thrones -- 5 episodes into season 1 and I love it!

Enjoy your Friday!


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Paleo Flow

Alycia at CrossFit Aspire is FABULOUS! She is always giving me the best information and advice.  Our box will be hosting some fun stuff come up --

  • Superhero Competition --> This Sunday we are having a in-house competition -- superhero style! haha! I honestly love my box and can't wait. It will be fun to compete against each other and hang out, push each other.

AND *drumroll please*

  • The 8th of September we are having a nutrition information session. I am very excited about this. I need to desperately change my eating and food habits.  After the session, we will have a 30-day Paleo challenge.  I honestly can't wait!  Alycia (in all her fabulousness *yes, I made that up*) recommended some good reading.  I've started with "It Starts With Food".  I am not that far in, but so far I am amazed at everything I have learned.
There is a lot to know about Paleo and I am trying my best.  I think my biggest weakness in my diet is my planning and food shopping.  I wish I had more time and someone who could help :)

Keep your fingers crossed -- I need to make my move to a better life and a healthier system.



New Math?

Tell me that didn't make you smile :) Ah, summer is coming to an end. I have mixed emotions, technically I've only been out of school for 22 days since I taught summer school.  But here is what I know so far about this year:
  1. I LOVE my job -- honestly, I know people say that but don't really mean it.  I can not express in words how much I love working in my district and especially at my school. 
  2. I'm moving back up to middle school --> WootWoot!! This is amazing news!
  3. We have a new math program --> this could be good or bad right? Well, I think we have a lot of good potential in this program and I am excited to use it!!
  4. Last, but not least, I LOVE my staff --> we are fabulous! Summer school was great because I got to know more people that I don't typically know. I feel a lot better about being at school and can't wait to see how this year rolls now that we are all closer.
Ok - yes, I had to brag for a bit about school and how amazing it is! :)



Monday, August 20, 2012

Do It For You

So, from if you read my last post (here) you may get that people may be stressing me out. They are, but not all of it is bad stress (is there really such a thing as good stress??). I really do have some awesome people in my life who push me and encourage me.  I have twitter friends that push me and always check in and see how things are going (Jeris, Andrew, my whole plank crew, etc.). I have friends who I've known for years that support me and encourage me (Sandy, Fam, Christa, Court, Tessa, etc.).  I want them to know that I really appreciate it.

3 months into CrossFit -- I'm hooked.  As of this week I am moving to an unlimited package and plan to go 3 days on 1 day off. I want to get stronger, faster and healthier.  I am not in it to become "skinnier", I do NOT want to lose my curves and I don't think I'm going crazy.  I think I have found the one thing I have been missing in my life since softball is over.

This post isn't amazing or super exciting.  It's really more for me to thank those who love me, support me and want me to be the best me I can be, even if at times they don't get it!  I've been told I'm starting to help people make some changes for themselves.  AWESOME!! That's why I share this awesome life changing adventure...just it for YOU :)

Now back to researching more Paleo ideas -- 30 day Paleo challenge starts in 2 weeks --> semi nervous :)



Sunday, August 19, 2012

Only a 5K Left for My FFM Ladies

So, obviously Friday's drive did't go as plan.  My normally 10.5 hour drive took almost 13 HOURS!!! Minus me wanting to let Scarlet go run and play in the Baltimore traffic since she barked for most of the 1.5 hours we sat....side note -- I would never let that happen...I was MISERABLE. My back hurt, my wrist & arms were done.  I was OVER being in the car.  By the time I got home, I pretty much ate a salad and called it a night (after catching up on TrueBlood & Grimm...I'm slightly obsessed). All I could think of was our 10 miler in the am --

Wish I would have known that before I started haha -- Saturday morning came WAY quicker then I thought.  It was crappy our - that greyish cloudy semi-raining but not enough to really be a reason to not go. I almost texted Mike to be like - hey, I'm not coming.  But I thought that would be pretty silly.

I headed out for my 10 miles.  Lauren & Jen were my only girls who showed -- I warned them from the start that I would not be the best coach that morning.  My legs and hips were tight.  After the first few miles, I could instantly tell I had not had enough water (imagine that, not enough drinking on a car ride with limited bathroom breaks haha). My girls got me through those 10 miles.  We had a good conversation - always do.  And a bonus is I think Jen may join me at Disney in January for the full!!!!

So...heres the and life.  I have had some AWESOME compliments over the past week or two.  That I seem WAY happier with life, that I'm glowing, looking better, etc.  I am VERY appreciative of all the kind words -- I'm working my butt off and really trying to make it a lifestyle change.  Now for the other side -- if you do not like what I am doing, don't understand why I am changing, think I'm NUTS or "doing too much" -- please keep the thoughts to yourself.  I am doing this for ME! This is not about you and never was.  I was sick of living day by day and not being truly happy. If you want to join me or ask me questions - I'm all for it.  But do NOT come at me with all your negativity -- please, miss me with that.

That picture is stolen from a friend of a friend on twitter -- > I LOVE it. Pretty much sums life up.  I've done well with getting into the fitness plan.  Now, I need a LOT of nutrition help. Any thoughts or ideas, please share :)

Till next time

~ xoxo M

PS I am SO stoked to hit CrossFit Aspire tomorrow

End Of An Era

Knoxville. Good 'old Rocky Top. It's my home. It's the longest place I ever called home. Yet, lately it's different every time I go. I know right now, Knoxville is not home. I miss my family that is there, my friends and my Fleet Feet Knoxville family, probably more then they know. It may become my home one day, but only time will tell!!

The end of my trip was fabulous. Lots of time with friends and family -- dinner with Sarah & Paul one night, Travis another, the crew another. Lots of catching up and fun. The dinner with my crew on Wednesday -- LOVE them.  They are my biggest fans and best supports.  They don't always get why I run or skip nights out to be ready to get up for a run or CrossFit, but they always support me.  I honestly wish they were closer.  I need more of that in my life!

Spent the evening before I left with just family. Nothing better to end on :)

Here are some pics -
Ms. O - early morning play time :)
Relaxing at lunch :)

Love this baby SO much!
First time trying yogurt
BiaBia & Me
One of my best & me
Tessa & me
Court & me
Crew Love
My Sisters from another mister ;)
My friend Veera's little one - Ms. Sophie :)
Ms. O wearing my necklace
7 am start to drive back to Jerz :(
BEAUTIFUL isn't it :)
Little morning pick me up :)
Girls were like this unless....
She was over my shoulder creeping haha

Xoxo~ M

Friday, August 17, 2012

ViewSPORT Tanks

Ok - so before I post about the end of my trip...I have to share a new obsession I found.  So, I LOVE twitter (I mean really, who doesn't?) and follow some pretty slick people - one of them being FitFluential (@FitFluential). They like to host chats and conversations with people - and the other day I caught them tweeting with ViewSport (@ViewSport). Once I figured out they were talking about workout clothes, I had to know more!!  Click their name to learn more -- but the gist is when you sweat, the shirts have a message that appear!! Check out the three I ordered!

Looks like my shipment should be in tomorrow!! HOLY SMOKES! I am SO excited!!

~xoxo M