Covering Up, protect yourself from the sun.

I was never a huge fan of excessive & long exposure to the sun.  I was never someone that craved tanning.  I never laid out at the beach lathering myself with oil, versus sunblock.  Instead, I always tried to cover up.

And now, the older and smarter I grow, I want even less sun, even less skin damage.

I wear my alma mater’s hat every time I eave my house.  And because I have a 1 & 4 year old, I have to be outside.  They love the outdoors, as they should, and at this time, I need to be out there with them – whether its in the pool, at the park, going for a walk, or going for a bike ride.  And so, hat on.  Glasses on.  My favorite face sunscreen is Olay’s SPF 15.  I put this on my FACE, on my upper lip, and also on my neck & exposed chest area.

And so with the sunglasses, the hat, the sun screen, I still truly couldn’t get covered up enough.  Regardless of the t-shirt or shirt I wore, my chest/neck area were always exposed.  And so I went into my closet and realized that my gf gave me an Old Navy denim-like shirt she did not want anymore.

And poof – this is the cutest thing since miniature poodles and gluten free cupcakes.  I have this exact shirt and it looks so good with a bathing-suit or bikini, it looks so cute with my Nike leggings, or shorts, or anything really that you want to wear while biking, running, or walking, or just CHASING after the kids.  I can button it all the way up to my neck, without actually having to wear a turtleneck, and my skin stays sun-free & wrinkle free.

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I’m not afraid of getting older, I’m psyched about it – but I want to protect my skin, take care of it – and enjoy the journey.  Looking good – is an absolute bonus.

I already don’t smoke, I already drink lots of water, I already don’t tan, and I already wear hats & sunglasses.  Now it was time for more full body protection.  And I’m excited to discover more and more ways to slow down aging.  Aging is chronic.  It’s going to get us all.  But until it does, prevent as much as you can, and we might as well love & enjoy the rewards of NOT tanning, NOT smoking, NOT sunning ourselves to an early departure.

Cheers, and stay uber motivated in your BEAUTIFUL goals.

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Eat more raw/plants, and beating cravings.

Last Tuesday (exactly 1 week ago), my town hosted an open air farmers market, full of local farmers selling fresh veggies & fruit.  And it was fabulous!  I ended up putting both of my little people in my stroller, picking up my neighbor & great girlfriend on the way, and we trekked the 1 mile to get to the market.  It was my first time visiting & patronizing the stands and I took a shiny $10 with me.

I purchased two cucumbers, a zucchini, a yellow squash, 4 HUGE tomatoes, kale and 5 jalapenos, all for $10.  As soon as I got home, I sauteed the kale, and sauteed the zucchini.  I ended up cutting up a tomato an sprinkling some salt on it, and then grilling up a jalapeno for my husband.

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It was truly the most lovely din din!  And full of whole food.

Today is Tuesday again, and the market is on – again!!! I’m looking forward to pushing the stroller all of the way to the market, to see what raw goodies we can purchase.  I’m psyched to be supporting local farmers, and I’m even more psyched to be able to eat and make delicious real food.

Yesterday, I had a salad for lunch, and a salad for dinner.  I had a salad for lunch today, and I plan on having a combo of the above raw/plant food for dinner.  My husband, has also been eating the same.  He’s looking to get a bit leaner.  And the scale is moving south for him – because of more plant food, more green food, less processed food, and more whole food – in his meals & daily diet.

As soon as I finished my salad today at lunch, I was still hungry.  Not truly hunger, as I just ate a whole bowl of romaine lettuce,and carrot and tomato, etc, with a few pieces of rotisserie chicken, but hungry as in:  I really want to FILL my stomach with grub.  Not healthy grub either.  I was eyeing the pretzels, or the Clif bars, and some other snacks my office keeps and all of the sudden I said: NO WAY JOSE, NOT THIS TIME.

I’m on Day 14 of my Whole30 plan, and I refuse to give into the crap, give into the cravings, and give into my triggers.  I am both bored, stressed, and anxious about work – depending on the minute, on the email, but such is my current work situation, and I refuse to add UNHEALTHY, UNHAPPY to that list – because of poor food choices.

And so I cut up a few more pieces of my rotisserie chicken, and I ate until I was TRULY full!!!  And the cravings went away.  I REFUSE to be a victim to cravings.  I refuse to be a victim to emotion, triggers and crap that truly would ONLY make me feel worst, not better.

For the past several months I have been starting & restarting Whole30.  And after day 7 or day 8, I tend to GIVE IN and start the sugar binge.  But not this time, not anymore.  I’m taking it 1 day at a time, and today is Day 14, and I will finish strong.  I just made myself a super hot cup of green tea, and I’m determined to finish off my day with a plant based and mostly raw dinner.  Why?  Because I know this is the absolute BEST for me.  It’s not a Clif bar, it’s not sugar, it’s not succumbing to a craving because of a trigger.  Instead, I choose health.  I choose better, because I KNOW better.  And so – here we go.

Stay strong my friends, stay extremely strong, and be wise for yourselves.  Know what is trying to knock you down, knock you off, and say:  Hell no, not today Felicia!

 

 

Live Your Future, right now.

Sometimes our goals are so far away, that we have no idea how to get there, if we ever will, and is it right to be so absolutely focused on our goals?  Does this take away from the present?

Today, my goals make my present absolutely enjoyable.  I was so happy that I spent my weekend at home, at our community pool, taking so many walks with my children in the stroller, a few solo & family bike rides – all in lots of sunshine.  It was all free.  Free everyday fun where the outside and nature provided 100% of the entertainment.

I made the most delicious iced coffees, with whip creme on top with sprinkled cinnamon.  I don’t need to go to Starbucks, or a local coffee shop to get my fix!  I can make my very own, and share it with those I love.  I made one for neighbor, my husband and my step daughter.  They were delicious, fun, and truly full of LOVE.  I opened up my kitchen cabinets and said, “Okay – what do we have?” And I used what we had to create deliciousness.

Just right now, I was taking a lil break at work, taking a stroll around our office building, and I said to myself:  Just keep putting one foot in front of the other, and the goals will come together.  My main two goals are my goals of HEALTH and WEALTH.  I want to continue to eat healthy & Whole30 each and every day – and I want to continue to reduce my expenses, and build up my savings, so we have 1M invested/saved.  These two are huge goals.  The journey to reaching them is actually the fun part.  It will be absolutely AWESOME to get there, and LIVE my life and make the decisions I need, when we get there – but right now right here, this past weekend, this is the journey.  It’s fun and exhilarating, and awesome, and hard, and motivating and most of all:  worth it!

Know exactly what you want, how you want to live, what you want to learn and explore and experience – and go after it.  I’m just so absolutely psyched to practice exactly what I need, to live exactly as I want to – right now (while mimicking my future).  The key is to create your daily life EXACTLY as your current goals & dream future.  Make your future your present and your happiness a daily present.

 

 

Cash Only, breaking up with the charge card.

I convinced myself that using my Amazon Chase Visa credit card, and paying the entire balance off each month is the way to go.  Usually, I receive a $30-$60 statement credit for using the cards, and this is well worth it.  No more.

I overspend using the credit cards.  I have no limit (as the credit card has no limit) and I let myself buy ANYTHING (mostly anything) I want at the grocery store, versus buying within a budget.  I am not mindful when using the credit card.  Instead, I buy what I need & want and what looks good, and I tell myself I’ll pay it off later.  If I have a grocery list, I go over it, and buy what is advertised and marketed, what I thought I forgot to add to the list, and so many extra items end up in the cart.

I instead, I am going to start using cash for my grocery purchases, and gas, and anything else that needs to be purchased.  This will cause me to be extremely more mindful and thoughtful.  I’m breaking up with the charge card!

Saturday morning I drove to Aldi, and I brought $140 cash with me (I have not been there for 2 weeks).  I ended up buying less, I put in 1 bag of chips, versus 2, I put in 1 ketchup bottles instead of 2, I ended up getting 1 package of burgers instead of 3, and so on.  Once I got to the register, I told the cashier that I only had $140 so to please warn me if we went over.  Instead, I was $20 under.  This was a win, as it seems my Aldi check out bill kept getting larger and larger each week.

Sunday night, I drove to the grocery store to buy some seltzer water, and romaine lettuce.  But, once I got to the store, I realized that I left my $20 at home, and I did not have any credit cards on me.  Oh well, no big deal, even though I had to go home empty handed, I did not spend any money on things I did not need.  We already had plenty of food and water to drink & eat at home.  Instead, I used that $20 on gas for the car this morning.

It’s nice to log onto my Chase credit card this morning, and not see a single item charged all weekend.  This is a win win win, and I’m psyched to continue to use CASH versus CREDIT.

 

 

Down 6lbs, thank you Whole30, Day 9.

I got up on the scale this morning, and I’m down to 159.  I ended up just having some cucumber for dinner, and basically chowing down on an apple standing up.  Instead of a dining room, we have a big island that connects our kitchen to the family room.  The kids sit & eat around this island, and my husband likes to eat after the kids go to sleep, which is around 8/9pm.  This is too late for me, so instead, I either eat with the kids, always standing up, watching over the little birds.

I was so hungry at lunch yesterday, that I ate what I needed to (a combo of sauteed kale, zucchini, tomato, peanuts & raisins w/ salad dressing), and then a really cold delicious banana, and my hunger/appetite subsided for dinner.  I really don’t need to do dinner each and every night, especially if I eat enough at lunch and in the afternoon, which makes sleeping more pleasant (less digestion) and I certainty don’t need the calories for the next 7-8 hours of rest.

Creating the healthiest diet lifestyle for ourselves truly involves figuring out what exactly works for us.  It’s not always three meals per day, it’s not always 6 mini meals.  It’s what works for you, for that day, for that meal.  Yesterday for me, this meant eating a larger lunch, and a tiny dinner.  It’s easy to get upset with our minds, our bods, when we aren’t able to go along with what we think we should do/eat, but instead, make up your own rules – from the evidence you have – your life.   And keep pushing forward.

Health is the goal.  Feeling fit.  Feeling good.  Feeling well.  Feeling rested, and being all of the above is more important than perfection.  Get it done, and do it right – whatever is right for you.

 

Day 6, Whole 30

I am not 100% compliant with the Whole 30 plan.  I guess I’m using the IDEA of Whole 30, their rules, and their plan, and just adjusting, customizing it a bit, meal per meal.

I like to say, oh I follow Whole 30.  For some reason this makes me feel comfortable and confident that success will ensue.  So many of us need a PLAN, and then we can take it from there.  I also feel that Whole 30 was 100% responsible for my SUCCESS when I lost weight and gained health – with it, in the past.  (Even thought I was not 100% compliant day in and day out.)

What do I eat/drink that is non-compliant?

salad dressings – whatever is available
wine – red wine, white wine, social occasions on the weekends, always with seltzer, always with lots of ice (yes, even red)
peanuts – this is my snack at work, and I also like to add to my salads
cappuccinos – coffee that is not black, if the opportunity is there, not daily
cheese –  if added onto already in a salad or a piece of chicken, not daily

I could stress these, but I choose not to, instead I keep on going and keep on trekking!  On most days, I have eggs for breakfast, either scrambled or hard boiled.  Then banana, apples, any type of fruit.  I have been eating salads for lunch, usually romaine lettuce & spinach, with tomato, and broccoli and raisins & peanuts.  Afternoon snack, more fruit – apple, banana (cold from the fridge tastes so good), and then a HOT herbal tea.  For dinner, I have been flexible.  Last night I had a bunch of cherries and strawberries at the pool with the kids, and then I had a small piece of tuna steak with a little bit of Caesar dressing.

I continue to wake up each day feeling better and better, stronger and stronger, and with less and less cravings.  The most important part is to not find yourself HUNGRY or without food, at special events or social outings.  Because when out and about, when hunger strikes, we’re much more likely to have those few handfuls of chips, or fried this or fried that.  Instead, eat those hard boiled eggs, apples, bananas, and stay full on WHOLE FOOD.

This is my plan so far. Down from 165 to 161, and the goal is 139.  This mama is going to make it!

 

Obsessed with Seltzer

Sometimes, water just doesn’t do it for me.  Sometimes, when you are REALLY hungry, and just probably thirsty, or truly actually HUNGERS, which turns to HANGRY, it’s time to jazz it up!

I start off my day with a big cup/glass of ICE & SELTZER (and tap/filtered water if there is room).  Even though I don’t enjoy spending the extra cash-flow on cans, I really really really love my seltzer, and it keeps me in line with my HEALTH goals.

My body, first thing in the morning, instead of craving pancakes or waffles, or bland water, I drink this up!  (And especially when I AM craving things I should not be!) And right before bed, right after I brush my teeth (which I do sometimes too early), I fill up on a can of seltzer & lots and lots of ice.  It keeps my stomach full, and my body on point, and heading towards the right direction.

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I buy most of my selzer at Aldi‘s.  They have the best prices at 12 cans for $2.99, but lately another grocery store had a great special, 24 cans for $3.99.  Hard to pass this up.  I love all of the flavors, and the more the merrier.  I try to limit myself to one or two per day at my house, and my office also has plenty of seltzer water available.  Makes it easier to stick to my beloved Whole30, especially when post lunch munchies start to wake up.  I also like to fill up on mint tea, and hot water with lemon.

We have to stay absolutely hydrated, and full on zero cal fluids.  We have to flush out the toxins, the cravings, the sugar, and the grub, crap we no longer want in our bodies.  Our bodies are gorgeous, really incredible machines, and we have to DRINK UP THE WATER to make sure we get to the EXACT goals we have committed to, and the EXACT LIFE that is ahead.

My goal is to hit 139lbs.  I’m currently 5’6 and weigh 161.  I started Whole30 Day 6, at 165lbs.  I’m 33 years old, and it’s certainly time to be & live at my healthiest weight, and healthiest body.  I’m down 4lbs, and we have 22lbs to go!!!  I know I can do it – so thank you for READING.  Wishing you absolutely ALL of the success possible.

If you have not yet tried Whole30 – do it.  I’ts truly an incredible LIFE plan.  Similar to ATKINS (I would assume from mediocre knowledge of Atkins, but it eliminates DAIRY/cheese, but you can do POTATOES)!  Not too bad of a trade off.

Whole30, how to eat well even during weekend fun.

The last two days, I did well eating mostly veggies, fruits and lean meats & eggs – even through some social situations and weekend fun.  Last night, was Friday night, and my brother in law stopped over.  I wanted to eat EVERYTHING.  Not because he was here, but because it was Friday night, and I just wanted to let loose, and eat a few cookies, chips, etc.  But I stuck with my plan and decided against it!!!  I ended up having a small piece of salmon with capers for din din, and I finished off Day 3 of my Whole30, by going on a bike ride around my beautiful neighborhood, once my little 21.5 month old cupcake went to sleep.

I woke up feeling GREAT today, and I’m proud of myself for sticking to da plan.  I also noticed that I’m not having as much trouble going back to sleep, once I wake up in the middle of the night, as I did previously (when eating a diet high in sugar & processed carbs.)

Today we celebrated my friend’s son’s 1st birthday.  The party had everything and anything, anyone could possibility wanted.  Lovely snack array, pretzels, little Chic Filet chicken nuggets, pizza, mac & cheese, chips, and then the DESSERTS came out!!  So delicious and so fun.  I first had a plate of VEGGIES  and then I had a red cup of fresh cut up FRUIT.  And I also had a few pieces of the chicken!  I could have avoided the chicken completely (as it was fried with some breadcrumbs) but I did better than I would have done any other day!!! I certainly WANTED all of the sweets, but I wasn’t CRAVING them.  I didn’t have a physical/psychological need for them.  Anyone who is addicted to sugar, and has a sweet tooth, would understand.

Sometimes you just can’t stop, can’t NOT have something.  But because I’ve been eating Whole30, and clean the last 4 days, I no longer CRAVED the sweets. I certainly WANTED them, but wanting something is much less weaker than craving something.  The cravings grow weaker and weaker as the program continues!

As soon as we got home from the b-day party, I brushed & flossed my teeth – poured myself a big cup of water and made myself a salad full of romaine lettuce & spinach, topped with raisins and a small piece of salmon.  I’m proud of myself for not losing control, but instead making conscious and good choices, and sticking to my plan!  I love feeling well (who doesn’t), but sometimes it is sooo incredibly hard to keep it going.  We have to stay uber motivated, and stay on point, on track, and do exactly what is right for us.

 

 

Day 2 – Whole30 + glass of wine

Breakfast:
lemon with warm water
coffee, black
3 hard boiled organic eggs

Lunch:
peanuts, dry roasted, no salt
raisins
romaine lettuce, tomato, broccoli salad
w/Caesar dressing
w/ 2 chicken drumsticks

Dinner:
apple
handful of grapes, a few strawberries
1.5 glasses, white wine

Yesterday was another SCORCHER!!!  So hot, so humid. My mom ended coming by in the evening to spend time with the children.  She brought over grapes and strawberries and chocolate chip cookies which I passed on!  I had some wine with her, and it was such a lovely evening.

I notice when I’m overeating, I’m not craving alcohol or wine, but when I’m “eating healthy” or “eating less” I certainly want a glass.  Not sure why that is.  Is it perhaps the sugar that my body wants?  Is it the COLD that my bod wants,since it’s so hot out?  Is it because it was a social situation (my mom & her boyfriend that came by) and I just wanted to “relax” & socialize a bit?  Either way, I’m way past any type of over-drinking phase of my life.  Now I just really have no issues drinking slowly, sipping, throwing in a bunch of ICE, and really watering it down as much as possible.  Drinking a glass also allows me to keep my hands busy, versus leaving them open and reaching for grub, junk food.

Also want to mention that wine/alcohol, peanuts, and Caesar dressing are NOT Whole30 compliant.

Dallas Violence, Wealth Disparity

Last night, my daughter woke up at 331am, and I fed her a whole bottle of the spinach/banana/almond milk mix that she drinks (instead of just milk), and I changed her diaper, and I put her back to bed.  She fell right asleep, but then my husband saw on his newsfeed the awful needs about Dallas.  At first I just saw a few of my PO friends on FB posting we stand with Dallas PD and DART and I had no clue what was going on.  Such incredible sad news.

So much of this violence comes down to the wealth disparity in this country.  The fact that the poor are so poor, and so many people so angry and desperate, really creates a vicious cycle that we have seen play out over and over again – so often resulting in murder.  Innocent people are killed because of so much anger so many of us carry inside.  I’m a white-pretty-educated-33 year old mom/wife/employed woman living in a clean safe well educated community.  I have NO CLUE how others feel, especially those who are different than me.  I have felt discrimination first hand for being a woman, and a pregnant woman in the workplace, but honestly, I have let it go. It’s absolute NOT how people should handle discrimination, but I dealt with it the best way I could, at the time.

Have you seen this video?

It’s sad, but it’s real.  It’s getting rougher for people out there.  And for most humans in this world.  I believe the Orlando shooter was also poor, and angry.  I believe that black people living in poor communities do what they can, what they feel they have to do to  get by.  Many times it’s illegal and dangerous and the police are also forced & many times choose to deal with this violent/dangerous/illegal backlash with violence.

It all comes down to money.  And when you follow the money trail, you realize that it has nothing to do with racism, it has nothing to do with the fact that humans don’t love each other and care for each other.  It comes down to the fact that we are growing poorer, and the very few are getting richer and richer.  So much of the most recent violence is a direct result of the wealth disparity in this country.

How can we stop this?  How can we distribute the wealth, jobs, opportunities, education, and benefits to all of our citizens?  How can we share the wealth without creating communism or socialism?  How can we be fair?  How can we make sure every single child has the right to an education, has the right to gain and grow confidence?  How can we make sure every single citizen in this country prospers in their own way, in their own life, without hurting others, without minimizing others, without taking advantage of others – and instead – becomes stronger because of their generosity?