Posted in: Fooducation, Q & A, Weight Loss

It’s the new year and everyone is jazzed about hitting the gym to workout. That’s not the only part about maintaining a healthy lifestyle.  In fact, working out might actually be the easy part because maintaining a healthy diet in a world of unhealthy convenient options can be tough.

#breakfast and #lunch #foodprep done for the week. Dinner and snacks on the way. Don't know what I'm going to do about food at #fitbloggin. What are you prepping for the week? It's time to start thinking about your food plan. #fitfluential #healthyeats

I’m going to be doing several posts on meal prep over the coming weeks and I want to know what are your biggest questions on prepping meals. I want to help everyone master the meal prep because it’s such an important thing. You can work out all you want but if you’re not eating right, it won’t do any good. Please take the time to respond to this because I really want to help everyone in the best way and I don’t want to tell you information you don’t need. Leave your questions in the comments or you can shoot me an e-mail.

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Where are you going?

Posted in: Daily Life, Goals, Motivations

It’s Monday! It’s time to get moving and get active. But we must always remember one thing:

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You can’t know where you’re going without knowing where you’ve been.

Just think about it. The drive to move forward comes from the places we’ve been. I run because I knew it was something I never thought I would do. I’m living my most healthy life right now because in the past I didn’t always do that. And the list will go on…

The past influences the future.

I wouldn’t change anything about the past if I could because I know that makes me the person I am today. The good, the bad and the ugly have built my core foundation. Changing even the smallest part of that would change me now…and in the future.

There are rough times in life but those are the times that really define who we are as people. Those are the times when lessons are learned and wisdom is gained. It’s not always going to be fun. It’s not always going to be easy. But it will always be a new experience for you where you will learn something.

If you’re going after new goals, just think about why you set those goals. What made you want to achieve those goals? Did the past have anything to do with your new goals?

Don’t forget the Mamma Chia giveaway ends tomorrow! You still have a chance to enter. I am looking forward to working on the site this week and doing some posts on meal prepping/planning/grocery shopping.

Posted in: In The News, Running, Tips, Working Out

Last week a woman was running in the wee hours of the morning and she was attacked. Her attacker tried to pull her in the bushes but she went all karate kid on him and got away. I don’t know if I could have done that. I can tell you one thing, I don’t want to find out. This terrifies me because I’ve been known to go running at 3:30 am! I did this without telling my husband where I would be running and I would be gone for hours at a time. He never would have known if I was attacked or even hurt. I think a couple of times, I even went out without my phone.

I’m a very scary person when it comes to things like this because I was victimized when I was in my single digits. I’m always looking for suspicious situations and sometimes I go all Jason Bourne and knows exit routes in most situations.

I like to exercise outside and many of you might feel the same way. It’s always better to workout in the fresh air, right? There are things that we need to do to protect ourselves when we take our workouts outside no matter what time of day. Don’t be fooled into thinking you’re at a less greater risk of becoming a victim of attack because it’s daylight. Always be on guard.

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Here are some suggestions for staying safe when you take your workout outside:

1. Always have a plan and tell someone your plan. Do regular check-ins with people to know so they know you are ok.
2. Always carry your phone with you. If you notice something suspicious or just need help, you know you can always call someone.
3. Take a self defense class. (I must admit I didn’t go to the self-defense class offered for runners and I regretted it ever since. I’m going to get in a class ASAP though.)
4. Carry some pepper spray or a stun gun or stick…something. Yes you can use it to defend yourself against people, but sometimes people let pets roam free and you can use it in that situation too. I know someone who got bit by dog last week when she was out getting her workout on.
5. Be aware of your surroundings. That might mean you no music or keeping it low. That means be on watch for cars on the road that may not even be near you. Always know where you are just in case you need to call for help.
6. If you go out in the dark, make sure you’re wearing reflective gear. Invest in a head light or anything that will make you visible.
7. Try to stay to populated areas where you will always be seen.
8. Have a workout buddy to go with you. That way you’re not alone and there’s always someone else to call for help just in case you can’t.

What other tips do you have for staying safe when working out outside?

Posted in: Race Recap, Running

I had no skin in the game here.  I just ran the Mississippi Blues Marathon the week before and I just wanted to finish.  I won’t lie when I tell you, I chose to run the marathon so I could eat some of the delicious food at the finisher festival.  Spoiler alert:  I was too tired and worn out when I finished to enjoy any of the food.

As the week went on, I just wanted to do better than I did last year.  I finished last year in 4:57:53 so coming in at 4:56:59 would have been plenty for me.  I’ve been having some issues while running lately so I’ve been trying to do some things different.  First thing different this race was using Honey Stinger instead of my normal GU! I liked the stingers because they aren’t as thick as the GU.  I’ve been getting to points in races where I just don’t want to take the GUs anymore, like wanting to skip them all together.

Picked up our race stuff! We're ready to #geauxrunla this weekend! #teamchocolatemilk #nuunlove #buildit

We went to the expo to pick up our packets on Friday evening, but there seemed to be a mix up.  It took us about 30 minutes for them to locate our packets.  When we finally got our packets we went on about our business.  The expo was very small so it didn’t take us too long to get through it all.

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Race morning was cool but not as cold as the day before. I was ready to run. I was armed with the GoPro again and Willie was ready to roll. When we were lining up in our corrals, Willie told me he was going to run a three hour half marathon and he was right. I really just wanted to have a good time and enjoy this race.

This year the race had corrals which was wonderful. In past years you kind of just took off and it was a total mess. There was a wave start and everything seemed to go much more smoothly. I was really glad about this because I was able to get into my groove quickly. The first few miles of the race went by very quickly. The next thing I knew we were running by the lake and hitting LSU’s campus. I can’t stress enough the beauty of this course. That’s probably why the miles just rolled on by.

At the half marathon split, I decided it was probably time to turn on my interval timer for a little bit. I was feeling a little tired but not spent. I knew my second half of the race couldn’t go on at the same pace as my first half. The race started off cool, but it got hot. There was full sunlight which made it difficult for me, but I kept chugging on.

At mile 15, I passed the spot where I fell down the previous year. I moved to the center of the road so I wouldn’t have anything like that happen again. I enjoyed seeing all the people on the side cheering for their family and friends. I got pick me ups when I would see children/significant others spot their person and run with them for a while. I’ve never had this happen to me so I would imagine it feels great. I took joy in the moments of others to push me through the miles. The run/walk timer saved me in moments because it kept me moving, even when I didn’t want to. It killed me sometimes because I felt obligated to stop running when the timer went off when I felt I should keep moving.

By the time I got back to the overpass at mile 25, it was hot! I was really ready to be done. Because I struggled so much from mile 14 -25, I didn’t think I would be able to come in better than last year. I rounded the final corner and pushed as hard as I could to cross the finish line. My watch was off on the miles probably because I took some of the road splits but of course the time was still accurate.

Louisiana marathon 2015

I ended up finishing the marathon in 4:52:23 which was a 3 minute marathon PR over St. Jude. I wasn’t expecting that but I was happy. I think I’m finally learning how to do this marathon thing. It’s been a learning process but I feel like I’m moving in the positive direction and learning more every race.

Louisiana marathon 2015

And I have to say, this is good quality bling. This is a race you should run if you’re a traveling runner. Good people. Great course. Tasty food.

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Totally had a blast at this race!

Posted in: Race Recap, Running

The Louisiana Marathon race weekend is one of my favorites of the year. I can’t explain why but it just is. Maybe it’s the energy, the friendly people, the beautiful course and even the great finisher festival. It’s a race I don’t think I’ll be missing.

Willie and I usually run the 5K the day before our big races. This year I was running the 5K and the full. Willie was running the 5K and the half. This year the race included the quarter marathon (6.55 miles) and I wish I would have signed up for that instead of the 5k. The price to change my race was a little too expensive so I stuck with the 5k.

Louisiana Marathon 2015

Something unusual happen this year, we actually knew a lot of people running this race. It was a nice reunion before we started the run. And like usual, it was a little chilly before the start.

Last year Willie and I ran the 5K together, but this year he told me he wasn’t having it. He felt like he wasn’t trained for running a faster race. That was fine. I was in the run for fun. When we took off, it was a mess. People were walking and blocking the way. I had to dodge people and run on the sidewalks. It wasn’t a pleasant experience but after the first mile things seem to even out.

Finished the 5k! I think I sailed my way to a new PR! Unofficial time is 28:29! #geauxrunla #teamchocolatemilk #nuunlove #headsweats #fitfluential #runhappy

Running down Park Blvd in Baton Rouge is the best. It’s so nice and pretty. I just love trees. This was just a nice run for me. I ended up with a PR of 28:14. I don’t know how that happened but it did.

After we were done, we headed to to finisher festival to enjoy the good eats.  Read Willie’s blog to find out more about all the cajun treats we had.

Posted in: Foodie, Fooducation, Product Review

It’s the new year so I’ve been trying out new ideas for a snack.  It’s hard for me because I am a creature of habit and I really like what I like.

I received this Mamma Chia Clean Energy drink a while back.  I wanted to talk about them earlier but I needed to make sure it was something I would approve.  I don’t want to lead you guys in the wrong direction.

Trying out a new #snack today. @mammachia squeeze is pretty good. I don't hate it. #healthyeats #eatclean #tiuteam #fitfluential #fitbloggin

I’m already a big fan of the chia squeeze.

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Today’s mid-morning snack was a Mamma Chia Clean Energy Cherry Charge and it’s good.  I must admit, the texture is a little weird for me.  It took me a little while to get use to it.  It’s due to the plumping of the chia seeds, but other than that, this stuff is good! Most importantly, the drink held me over until it was time to eat lunch.  That is always something I worry about, but this snack really was a great snack.  The cherry charge has to be my favorite flavor!

Here’s a little bit more info about the Mamma Chia Clean Energy drink.   It is the FIRST beverage that combines the power of chia with the clean energy of guayusa (gwhy-you-sa) resulting in a truly healthful, fulfilling and delicious energy beverage that nourishes your entire body and soul. Made with refreshing organic fruit juices and lightly sweetened with only 14 grams of organic cane sugar, one bottle of MammaChia Clean Energy (10 oz.) delivers:

  • More than an entire day’s worth of Omega-3s (2500 mg)
  • 25 percent of one’s daily fiber (6 grams)
  • 4 grams of complete protein
  • 90 mg of natural caffeine (about as much in an 8 oz. cup of coffee)
  • Twice the antioxidants of a cup of green tea
  • Calcium, powerful antioxidants and valuable minerals
  • 120 calories

Chia seeds are a superfood!  That’s always a plus.  Clean Energy Drinks are Non-GMO Verified, gluten-free, vegan, Kosher and USDA Certified Organic.

Retailing for $2.99, the Clean Energy organic beverages are available in four flavors and will be available at select retailers, including Whole Foods, Safeway and Target.

Because I like the clean energy drinks so much, I am hosting a giveaway for some cool stuff.  This is what you’ll get if you win:

  • One week supply of Clean Energy beverages
  • One week supply of Chia Squeezes
  • Mamma Chia Camelbak water bottle

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don’t forget to leave a comment on the blog post about what flavor energy drink you think you’d like the most!

 

The truth about life

Posted in: Daily Life

You may have noticed the blog was a little scarce last week.  I hate when that happens.  I’m not one to schedule posts and send them through the loop.  Maybe I should do that in times like this but I like to stay authentic to my readers and post real stuff.  This past week I’ve failed to do so because I’ve just been stressed.

I will be honest.  Things have been really stressful since November and since then things have just started to pile up.  The past two weeks have probably been the most stressful of my life in a long time.  I really wish I could elaborate more, but it’s best to just leave it stuck in the grey area.  I will say this stressful part of life has nothing to do with my marriage.  I don’t want people floating rumors around the internet that simply aren’t true.

How have I been dealing with my stress?  Not by eating my emotions.  But I will admit last Wednesday I came home and I was really upset.  I was REALLY upset and opened up a box of Puffins while venting to my husband without even knowing it.  I had only eaten 3 pieces of cereal before I noticed what happened.  That was really the only emotional eating slip up I had and I wouldn’t even call that a big deal.

Positive

Otherwise, I’ve been focusing on staying positive.  I’ve been stepping back and saying, “This is happening right now, but this could happen to make it better.” I haven’t really let things go out of control and I’ve just been handling one obstacle at a time.

Headed back to Texas in my #headsweats hat and drinking my @nuunhydration! Gotta love the @thelamarathon. The medal is so cute! #nuunlove #teamnuun #headsweats #running #marathonmaniacs

I’ve always been working out to help with the stress.  Luckily last week was launch week at the gym because that gave me some extra reasons to go to the gym.  And of course, I’ve been running.  Three marathons in three weeks helps keeps me sane and mentally strong.

Things are looking up because I have great people helping and supporting me.  Things are looking up because I’ve had a very positive attitude.  But most importantly, things are looking up because I’m not letting it drag me down.

I just wanted to give you the update on what’s been going through my mind and life and I’m asking you to understand the small dip in posts.  I don’t want to leave you in the dark.  I look forward to doing more on the blog now and I’ll be working on some videos.

I hope everyone has a great Monday and a great week!  What’s the one thing you’re going to be positive about this week? 

Posted in: Daily Life, Working Out

I’ve been a little MIA this week.  It’s been a busy busy week with my full-time and part-time job.  I haven’t been doing a good job at keeping you informed with what I’ve been doing.

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First off, it’s launch week at the gym which keeps me busy.  That means more teaching in my schedule.  It’s kind of a bummer I didn’t have enough time to go to all the classes I wanted to attend.  I’ll just pick it up next week.  This morning I got to team teach with my buddy. She made our shirts which were so cute!

I’ve been meal prepping I just haven’t been talking about it because I’ve eaten the same thing for the past two weeks.

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I know you’re dying to know that we’ve been eating veggies, swai and black beans!

Mamma chia

I’ve been trying out these Mamma Chia energy drinks.  I’m not a huge fan of drinking my calories but I thought I would give them a try. I’ll have a product review coming soon…I think.

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So this isn’t really healthy but it’s been cold lately. I’ve been playing around with my scarves. I watched one of those fancy videos and learned some new ties. Please excuse my messy desk at work.

Don’t forget if you want to be one of the 2-3 random people who get mail from me each month, don’t forget to sign up on the list.

Lastly, when you’re busy, how do you stay healthy?

Posted in: Race Recap, Running, The Quest, Travel

This past weekend, I ran the Mississippi Blues Marathon in Jackson, MS.  This race made Runner’s World Best Marathons to run this year.  I was highly intrigued about this race making the list.  Jackson isn’t exactly the travel hot spot so I really wondered what the fuss was about.  I quickly learned but I’ll get to that later.

This race was also the marathon maniac reunion race of 2015!  Last year the reunion race was The Louisiana Marathon, but I was just running my first marathon at that race.  It was exciting to be a Marathon Maniac this year and to see how far that I’ve come.  There was a pasta party the night before and it was great for me to see people I had seen throughout the year.  This was a special moment and I got to share it with Jes too.  Besties that run together, stay crazy together!  At least that’s what I think!

I tried my best to video the entire weekend but it wasn’t the best job.  I wasn’t comfortable carrying around the camera and filming everything that I should have filmed.  When I returned home, I was a little disappointed in myself for not taking advantage of the situation.  But I did video and Willie edited it.

This was the hardest marathon course I’ve ever run.  It was super hilly.  Did you see everyone walking behind me when I was filming on that big hill?  It was a little rough.  I had high expectations for the race because the weather was a little cooler than normal.  It was supposed to be 25 degrees but it was 30 degrees.  I didn’t take into account that the hills would be murder on my quads and hamstrings.  Oh, and the roads weren’t in the best condition in a lot of spots.  There was a constant need to dodge some serious pot holes.

It's cold but not as cold as we thought it would be. Ready to race Mississippi Blues Marathon! #mymsblues #marathonmaniacs #50states #teamchocolatemilk #nuunlove

The race started at 7am so it was pretty frigid out there. My favorite part of the race was running through Jackson State University.  They have done amazing things with that campus and it was so great to see it.  The hills just kept coming and coming, I wondered when it was going to end. The race had a seven hour time limit and I see why.

Highlights of the race:

  • Instead of race shirt, you got a race vest
  • Really nice volunteers.  Every time I told someone thank you, they told me thank you back for running the race.
  • Swag included a harmonica and blues mixed CD
  • A few cool bands on course
  • A really cool finisher medal

Cons of the race:

  • Horrible roads
  • Hilly course

I thought I was out on course a lot longer than what I was.  Toward the end I looked down at my watch at my 24, it said 4:50:07.  I really thought I had been on the course for way longer than that.  I didn’t PR the race but I finished in 5:14:47 which I will take.  The course was hard and I was ready to be done.

I'm done! Watch says 5:15:01 and I hope that's true. This was a difficult marathon course! #mississippiblues #marathonmaniacs #teamchocolatemilk #nuunlove #fitfluential #noexcuses

But I got this cool medal.

Besties that run together, stay crazy together! #marathonmaniacs #runhappy #mymsblues #mississippiblues #marathon

Would I run this race again? Yes, but I don’t see myself running it again next year.  I need a break from the torment of the hills.  I would definitely do this race for fun and not for time.  It was a great race with great people.

This race was all about being a Marathon Maniac but that doesn’t mean we weren’t searching for lowfat chocolate milk when it was done.  I didn’t see any at the finish line, but I saw people with it.  On the way home, we stopped to pick some up. Recovery is key because there’s another marathon on the horizon.

Another state has been checked off the list…

Posted in: Goals, Motivations

I don’t know why but this morning I woke up thinking about the things that people said I should/would never do. It’s easy to get wrapped up I. The idea of what others think and say about us. I could sit here and tell you that you shouldn’t care, but I know it’s easier said than done. If I told you I lived like that, it would be a lie.

Truth is I do care, but I think that is wrapped up in insecurities. I let it creep into my head and ruin some pretty proud moments for myself. Truth is, I shouldn’t care to the point where it sometimes does affect me the way it does. I feel like I’ve gotten better at the whole thing, but I’m 60% emotional and 40% logical.

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But I’m wasting time and energy thinking about that kind of stuff. Insecurities bring self doubt and worry about what others think brings on feelings of guilt and non acceptance. Those are all things that we need to shed from our lives.

Most importantly, letting those things become an obstacle for something we want to do is nonsense. It’s time to stop the cycle and just believe those things will happen. But those things will only happen if we try.

No one can stop you from accomplishing whatever you want to do. Stay focused. Develop a plan. Move forward and never look back. Find a people who will support you. Support doesn’t always mean those people will always understand. Support means they will be there to listen and lift you up when an ear is needed. It’s also important to surround with people who do understand. It helps to talk to those people to gain perspective.

I say this because it’s a new year and people are trying new things and embarking on new journeys. It’s never going easy but having the confidence to see the journey to the end. Everything is possible, it just depends on how hard you.>