Friday, August 31, 2012

Happy Friday/Food PenPal Reveal

Good afternoon Beautiful,
Happy Friday! I’m super excited because it’s Friday but I’m super sad because it’s basically the last weekend of summer. It’s been a crazy summer and it has flown by like nobody’s business. As much as I love the hustle and bustle of summer, I like going into fall because it means 1. It’s getting close to my birthday (I’m a Halloween baby – any others out there? J) and 2. Life in general calms down. Summer is always go, go, go so I’m glad it’s going to start slowing down and I’ll have more “me” time.
After I ran on Wednesday, I was pretty convinced I was going to be a zombie on Thursday, not being able to bend in any sort of way, but surprisingly I was feeling good! I mean, I was obviously a bit tight and tender, but I channeled my inner marathoner and decided I needed to run again yesterday, except this time I was going to go at an easy pace, and I brought JENNY with me! J. Jenny has never run before so I could tell she was a bit nervous, but she did unbelievable! We managed to jog our way through a 5km run with only taking 1 walk break! We kept conversation going the whole time, so it took my mind off the actual run. I’ve NEVER ran with a buddy before. For real, even during my half-marathon training I’d prefer running alone. It was definitely a nice change, and hopefully I can convince Jenny to keep running with me!
I’m planning on going for a longer run on Sunday, I’m going to do an hour of 10 and 1’s (run 10 minutes, walk 1 minute) and see how it goes. It feels good to get back into running. I’m not sure if I’m ready to commit to another half-marathon quite yet, but this 10km race is definitely getting me there! Loving it so far! Poor Michelle (who I’m doing the race with) is still sick! I feel awful, it sounds horrible what she has… She told me she’s going running today even if it kills her. My response was obviously “please don’t die!” she laughedJ. I hope she gets through it ok!
Today Jenny and I did TRX and it kicked my arse! Remember at the beginning of this training how I was concerned it wasn’t going to be hard enough for me? I TAKE IT BACK! It’s pleeeeenty hard now. I know that I at least did 107 (give or take) one-legged lunges on each leg today; my legs are like friggen jelly AND concrete at the same time. Is that possible? My arms aren’t too bad. We had to do a lot of push-ups and chest presses, but I think it was the push-ups that got me. I refused to do them on my knees, so I pumped out at least 40 push-ups on my toes today. Plus some speed squats, floor jacks, TRX burpees, and TRX mountain climbers which neither Jenny nor I could accomplish. Do you know how exhausting it is to try and do something you can’t do 20 different times!? It’s hard. On a good note however, I totally earned my rest day tomorrow – and it’s going to be glorious!
Today is a super fun day because it’s Foodie Pen Pals Reveal Day!

My Foodie Pen Pal this month was Danielle Hogey from DishandDash.com, and this box was SO COOL! She’s actually moving to Peru soon (how cool is that?) so she’s hoping she can continue her Foodie Pen Pal while she’s there! In the box Danielle sent me was three different types of tea, a tea steeper, an all organic bar (I’m sorry I can’t remember the brand because I already ate it!
J), some super cute tea towels, a wine stand and a cute little book with some delicious paleo recipes written inside! She is totally creative, and I never in a million years would have thought to put stuff like that in my Foodie package! Check it out! (The bar is missing, aka in my belly, and the wine stand is in use so I forgot to include it in the photo!).

 
I tea samples are Black Currant Black Tea, Pomegranate Rosehip Tea and Chinese Green Tea. I had a cup of the Black Currant Black Tea this morning and it’s DELICIOUS. I’m a huge tea fan, and I didn’t even tell her this – so she did SOOO good with this box!  Thank you Danielle! You rock!
If you’re curious about becoming part of the Foodie Pen Pal group, here are the details:
-          On the 5th of every month you receive notification of who has you and who you have to send food to. It’s your own responsibility to contact your pen pal, find out what they like, don’t like, are allergic to and the address to ship the package to.
-          You have until the 15th of the month to gather your goodies, and on the 15th you mail it out.
-          On the last day of the month you write a blog post about what you received in your box this month!
-          The spending limit is $15.
-          It must include something written, a letter to your pal or even a recipe!
For a more detailed look at the program, click here and you can also sign up if you’re interested!
I’m going to take a break from Foodie Pen Pals for a month or two, I have a ton of stuff on my plate right now so I need to figure out what to cut, and unfortunately Foodie Pen Pals made the cut list – BUT not forever, I will for sure be back!! J
For all of my fellow paleo go-ers, I’m looking for a recipe to try this weekend, and I’m curious, what’s your favourite recipe?? I want to expand my cooking pallet and I’m hoping you guys can help! I want to make something fun, delicious and totally healthy this weekend so let me know if you have anything in mind you’d think I’d like to try! J.
Do you have any big plans for this long weekend? Honestly, I’m really hoping that the whole weekend is low-key. I know C and I might hit up William’s Landing in Liberty Village or maybe check out Grace O’Malley’s and their live music on some night. We actually have to babysit my little cousins on Sunday afternoon, I’m pretty excited! Babysitting to me means catching a kids flick at the movies, and hoping they sit nicely and watch. J. I’m honestly the worst babysitter ever. Maybe I’ll come up with something creative. Not totally sure yet. Wish me luck….
Anyways, I’m off to make some more Black Currant tea, read some more of It Starts with Food and prepare my next GIVEAWAY! That’s right! On Monday I’m going to post my next giveaway, and it’s very much going to be delicious. I’m actually jealous of whoever wins it! Stay tuned friends!
Also – in case you didn’t know, for those of you who read my blog and like it, please also like my Facebook page so I can update you in real time! I actually need to start posting more on my Facebook page, so the more likes I get the more I’m going to be updating! You guys rock!
Stay sweet.
xoxo

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Made It Through My First Zoo Race Training Run! And A Product Review

Good afternoon Beautiful,
I told you briefly that myself and Michelle from Push.Pump.Progress  are doing the Canadian Running Series Toronto Zoo Run on September 22. I also mentioned I’ve kind of been avoiding running since my half-marathon in May. Like, a lot avoiding it. I’ve ran outside once since May 6, so today (and for about a week) I thought I better get out and hit the pavement and see how much of my running endurance I’ve lost.
First things first. I always bring my workout clothes with me to work so I can run/workout/TRX on my lunch breaks, it’s great! I remember this morning, picking out a black tank top I wanted to wear because I knew I was going running outside (black is slimming don’t ya know!) and I went to grab everything from my bag at lunch, and alas – no tank top. I’m actually somewhat concerned, I’m either going insane, or I’ve lost one of my lulu tanks. I’m hoping the first, as I hate losing clothes…
Anyways, thank GOD I work in a gym where they sell gym clothes, so I found an Adidas tank top that would suffice, bought it, and out I went. I had made a sweet playlist because I really needed motivation to get up and going. I had a $15 iTunes gift card, so this was the perfect time to use it! My playlist had everything from Nicki Minage to Train to Alabama (my country roots!) and it was glorious! I have a route that I do at work, and it’s about 2.5km in length, so depending on the day I do either 2 laps (5km) or 3 laps (7.5km). Today I did 2 because I haven’t done it in months.
My sweaty self after my run! My arms look
really long....
The weather was SO great, and there was a nice breeze to keep me cool-ish while I was running. I finished my first lap in pretty good time, only stopping twice because of stop lights, but I could definitely tell I was getting tired. I went into this run with high hopes, hoping I could totally run the whole 5km without stopping – HA. So wrong…. In the second lap I stopped to walk twice not including stop lights (1 this time). The good news is I think I got a bit of colour on my arms, and that I managed to knock out the 5km in a little over 27 minutes. I am very happy with this time!! I definitely thought the walk breaks had put me behind a bit. I think the fact that my neon yellow shoes are the same colour as the ones everyone was wearing during the Olympics, they made me faster. Another great thing was that I felt SO good after finishing my run today. I totally wanted to do another lap but didn’t because I didn’t want to push myself too hard right now. I sweat a ton once I was done running, and now my skin feels so soft, and I just feel so refreshed! There’s a good chance I may get the running bug once again (depending how sore I am tomorrow I suppose!).
The bad news about this is that since I haven’t ran in months, my body is no longer used to running. It’s been like 3 hours since I ran and I’m already really tight and can tell I’m going to be sore tomorrow. My legs were already sore from yesterday’s horrific TRX session (horrific in the most amazing way possible, it was SO HARD I was crawling on the ground at some points!) so I honestly thought the run would help loosen everything up. I just feel tighter now; I even spent a few minutes stretching at the end (which I never used to do for such short runs).
My goal for the Zoo Run is to finish under an hour. I thought about trying to beat my current 10km personal best of 55 minutes, but the 10km race I did that time in was mostly downhill or pretty level ground. The Zoo Run is a lot of hills, so I’m not sure how well I’m going to do. Which reminds me, I should probably schedule in some hill training before this race and get myself somewhat prepared. The first 10km race I did I was so over prepared because it was right near the end of my half-marathon training, and I used the 10km race as one of my taper runs. This time, not so much. I ran the entire 10km race last time, and I’m hoping to do the same again, but I’m not sure how “hilly” the course is so I guess I’ll find out at the race and adjust my goals accordingly. J. From now until then (3 weeks) I’m going to be running 3x/week, twice during the week and a longer run on the weekends.
I made it through the Zoo Training Run #1!!
A little while back I was given a jar of BioCore Foods MICROgreens to try from the wonderful and generous David Levy from BioCore Foods in order to provide you with my first hand opinion on this product.
To be honest, I was a bit nervous when I first got the product because it’s really dark green powder. If you’ve ever had greens before, they’re somewhat similar. I got over the nervousness quickly and soon became really excited to try a new product. I started it the day after I got it, and had it every single day, first thing in the morning (as advised by David) until the jar was empty. I am SO in love with this product. I could easily tell I had more energy throughout the day, the taste wasn’t bad AT ALL, and I actually found myself excited to have it in the morning. I can tell that my energy has gone way down since I finished the greens, and that sucks! J. I guess that’s how they keep you coming back, no? Well, at least I can say I vouch for this product.
Where can you buy MICROgreens? Let me tell you! This product is interesting because you can’t buy it in stores, you have to buy it through a health care practitioner. With that being said, they’re very loose with the term “health care professional” and it could be anyone from a doctor, to a yoga instructor. If you’ve never heard of this product before and are interested in purchasing some, you can visit their website here, and let them know you’re looking to buy and they will put you in touch with the closest provider in your area.

I read a bit more of It Starts With Food last night, and I learned something new that I’ve been dying to share with you all (I was telling Jenny this at work today!). I learned the reason why people can eat and eat and eat crappy foods until they barf, but people tend to feel fuller after a delicious healthy meal. Crappy, processed “franken-foods” have ZERO nutritional value to them. They do not provide vitamins, they don’t provide minerals, they do nothing but sit in your stomach. Because they provide no nutrients, you’re body doesn’t really know what to do with it, because it can’t absorb anything from these foods, so the hormones in your body don’t go to brain and don’t tell you how full you are, until literally your stomach is so full that you want to vomit. Foods with a lot of nutrients in them are absorbed by the body, and the hormones in your body realize “Hey! I’ve got enough food now – thank you very much!” and sends a signal to the brain telling you that you are full.
ISN’T THE BODY SO COOL!  I might be more excited about learning this than the average person, but I wanted to share none the less, so that you learn as well and can look super cool/smart in a random conversation about food someday. You’re welcome J.
I just wanted to take a minute and give a huge shout out to Jenny (my co-worker, I’ve written about her before) AND her roommate Steph. They’ve both recently become SO EXCITED about getting healthy and fit, and it’s totally awesome! Jenny has completely quit smoking and she’s starting to eat paleo as well as doing TRX with me 2-3x/week and working out with me in the gym on other days! Steph has also recently taken to the paleo diet and she sounds SO EXCITED about it!! She has some medical issues and has researched about how the paleo diet has helped so many people go symptom free for so long so she’s super pumped to start that! So WAY TO GO GIRLS! You’re doing so well, and I’m so happy and excited for you!!
Anyways – I’m off to finish cooking dinner (I’m making Chicken Divan again… see recipe here!) and to eat. My legs are getting more sore as the hours go on, so please pray that I’m able to walk tomorrow. If I’m not TOO sore, I’m for sure running again tomorrow.
Stay sweet.
xoxo

Monday, August 27, 2012

Alyssa's Bachelorette & My Guide To Start Eating Clean!

Good evening Beautiful,

It’s been SO long since I last wrote and to be honest, I kind of wanted to skip volleyball tonight to write my post, but I didn’t. Today was the last day of summer volleyball for me, and well, we lost horribly, but it was still really fun! We had some drinks and food after (I had 1 glass of white wine sangria and a hamburger sans bun with a side salad!) and it started to POUR!! Like, when I say pour, I’m talking about torrential down pouring. Raining so hard, I had no idea how I was going to make it to my car without all of me plus my phone and keys becoming so soaked that they probably wouldn’t work anymore. Luckily a team mate of mine parked close and drove me and a couple of the other girls to our cars. I tried running to his car, but couldn’t because the water in the parking lot was so deep… that’s how hard it was raining!
ANYWAYS I need to get to the good stuff. My last post left you off at me going to Wasaga Beach for the weekend for Alyssa’s bachelorette party. It was intense to say the least. Alyssa’s cousin Whitney was there and I knew her because we went to highschool together, and I drove down with Alyssa’s brother Justin, so I knew a couple people going into it. Whitney and I had both worked on Friday so we were pooped, and the other girls went out to a club while Whit and I went to bed. I’m kind of glad I did because I wanted to save my energy for Saturday. On Saturday morning Whitney and I woke up before everyone and went shopping along the beach and sun tanned for a while. It was really fun, but we eventually left to go wake everyone up. So we did and we all had lunch and ventured back to the beach where I layed in the sweet, sweet sunshine for the afternoon.
Saturday night was the big night, so we went home and all started to get ready. After dinner while we were getting ready we had Alyssa open up her presents, and there were a lot of rather interesting presents to say the least ;). We continued drinking and taking pictures and getting to know each other then we ventured back down to the beach and to Bananas where we decided to spend our evening. I’m not going to get into details because well, what happens in Wasaga, stays in Wasaga. We got to bed around 4am, and Justin and I made our way back to Toronto around 10. It was an amazing weekend, and I can’t believe it was actually Alyssa’s bachelorette party! She’s getting married in two weeks and I know I’m going to be a wreck. So emotional J. She’ll make a beautiful bride!

I had mentioned before how I was trying really hard to stick to my paleo diet, and I succeeded ALL WEEKEND…. Until the drive back to Toronto when I was 100% hung over and not caring about life in general and Justin and I stopped at McDonalds. Yep. The one restaurant I detest more than anything in life, and I went there, and ate 10 McNuggets and a double cheese burger. Needless to say, I paid for it in the afternoon when I occupied the washroom on multiple occasions. Seriously – I don’t know why I eat there. It’s so disgusting and makes me feel like ass. I never learn…
So I’ve been a big advocate of the paleo diet for the majority of this year, and I’ve had a lot of questions about it. Most recently I’ve had people asking how to get started and how to get motivated to eat paleo (or be more strict about it if they already kind of have the concept). Whenever anyone asks me this, one of the first things I always say is that I’m not perfect, and I don’t eat paleo sometimes. Sometimes I cheat (aka McDonalds) but I always end up feeling like ass when I do. I make it very clear that there are many people much more strict about it than I am, but I can definitely give some helpful tips because of the research I’ve done on it. The next thing I always recommend is purchasing the book The Paleo Solution. I don’t think it’s good to dive into something when you’ve done zero research on it. Robb Wolf is the author of this book and he’s one of the leading experts on the paleo diet, and he knows EVERYTHING about it – I’m not even kidding. I can tweet him when I have a random question and he gets back to me every friggen time… It’s unreal! He’s amazing. The book not only explains the paleo diet, but it also gives a meal plan for 4 weeks of meals that you can easily attempt (it includes leftovers so it’s not like you’re spending a million dollars making a new recipe for every meal you eat). I would highly, HIGHLY recommend reading this when you start on your paleo/eating clean journey.
The second thing I would recommend is researching some wicked paleo recipes. There are apps on iPad/iPhone with tons of paleo recipes, and I’ve used my app on multiple occasions to get recipes. My mussels recipe, my chicken divan recipe, a chicken thigh recipe, and I think a few more I’ve done have come from the app. Check it out – it will totally get you motivated and in the right mind set for eating paleo!
There are tons of resources for eating clean/eating paleo. Charles Poliquin, Tosca Reno, Dallas & Melissa Hartwig are just a few I can name off the top of my head. I’m a huge fan of all three! You can check out Charles on his website found here, Tosca has 15 books you can get and read (If you’re just starting on your journey to eat clean, I’d recommend The Eat CleanDiet Recharged found here), and Dallas & Melissa Hartwig have a book that I’m currently reading called It Starts With Food and you can find that book here.
Next on my list would be to suck it up and go through your cupboards, fridge and freezer, and get rid of ALL processed foods, foods with sugar, foods with wheat/gluten and foods that contain dairy (with the exception of butter). I know, I know… this sounds crazy right? It’s probably quite a few dollars’ worth of food that you’ll be throwing out, but trust me…. Out of sight, out of mind. I experienced this whole thing today. After work and before volleyball, I ventured into the convenience store below my building because C needed advil. No problem… except I also bought a pack of Skittles. Seriously. In my head I said “it’s totally fine, I’ll eat perfect tomorrow”. NO – don’t tell yourself this!! Once you’ve made the decision to eat clean, JUST START NOW! I had 15 minutes to spare after I got ready for volleyball so I read a few pages from It Starts With Food, and how processed sugary foods trick your mind and causes your body a lot of stress, and I went over to the bag with the Skittles in it and threw them away. Ugh – there goes $2 for no good reason.
One thing that is so, so important when eating clean is to stop being lazy and preparing your food in advanced. Just like how I bought a ton of food to take to Wasaga with me, you need to do the same in your everyday life. You need to break bad habits of buying your lunch every day from the restaurant at work, and bring food that you’ve cooked, and only food that you’ve cooked. I find that most people don’t mind cooking dinner, so I always recommend making a little bit more at dinner, and taking it for left overs for lunch. It’s a perfect set up – no prep in the morning, and it’s no different than making dinner. Make sure you have enough Tupperware to hold all of your leftovers! I also recommend veggies and fruit because let’s face it, you can eat almost any veggies raw, the only prep those need is being chopped up, and fruit basically comes in its own packaging anyways. How easy is it to throw a whole orange in your purse and not worry about it? How much less work is possible!?
I love learning about food and nutrition more than anything, so if you ever have nutrition or clean eating questions, please ask!! If I don’t know the answer, then I will find out and let you know and then I’ll get to learn something new as well! I hope that my advice on here helps you get a start on eating clean. I really do think this way of eating will help so many people feel so much better physically and mentally. It’s such an ego boost when someone comments “wow… you eat so healthy!” and it’s so motivating to feel just so great and full of energy. I promise, even if you crave carbs like crazy for the first few weeks it will be sooooo worth it once you get past that part. So cheers to clean eating and getting started on the rest of your life!
Let me know if you’ve just started eating clean/paleo – what’s been the hardest part for you? Or if you’ve been eating clean/paleo for a while, what’s been the biggest difference for you? I’d love to hear your thoughts/opinions!
Stay sweet.
xoxo

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Heading Into A Weekend At The Beach!

Good evening Beautiful,
I know what you’re probably thinking. It’s SO late, why is Sarah writing a blog post right now? Well, I leave tomorrow for a weekend at Wasaga Beach doing fun Bachelorette things because it’s one of my best friends Bachelorette Party! I’ve talked about Alyssa before – it’s her bachelorette party! I’m excited to go, but because I want to stick to my paleo diet, it does require some prep, so currently there is chicken in the oven, cooking, so I can cut it up and take it with me to eat on the weekend.
Alyssa’s sister is supposed to be picking up food for the weekend, and we’re to chip in for the food. Totally cool – not a problem! But the one problem is that I don’t eat wheat (gluten) or dairy. So I bought a bunch of fruit/veggies/gluten free somewhat cheat snackies to take with me. I hope no one minds. I’ve had enough of people judging what I eat as it is this week (for anyone who actually cares, I do thoroughly enjoy brussel sprouts for breakfast. I don’t see a difference between that and people who eat bacon and eggs for dinner, do you?).  I think the people that are coming to the weekend getaway will be cool and understand why I brought my own food. Well, at least I hope. I even got organic vodka to take, because let’s face it… There will be drinking happening this weekend so I might as well make it organic. I will always be honest on my blog, so I'm not denying that I will be drinking a lot on Saturday night, and consuming who knows what. My chances of sticking to my paleo diet are much greater since I have a lot of food planned out to eat, but again.. you never know, and YES - I will tell you if I succeed or not, hence "My (Mostly)  Healthy Life" :).

Here’s a sneak peak into my foodie bag that I’m taking with me too….
Some bananas, oranges, gluten free prezels, lara bars
nectarines, and there will be chicken :)
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking this week about my weekend at canfitpro and what I’ve learned, and the stuff that resonates with me the most is the nutritional information I learned from Tosca Reno. She said something that really stuck with me.. “There’s a difference between feeding your body and nourishing your body, we need to be nourishing out bodies.” and that has been in my head all week.

I’ve had a book waiting for me to read it for about 3 months now, but I’ve been busy reading all three of the 50 Shades of Grey books so I haven’t gotten to this book yet, but the good news is today I finished book 3 of the 50 SoG series so I can start on this book this weekend! The book is called It Starts With Food. I know you’ve probably all already heard of it because it’s so popular, so if you have any advice (if you can give advice?) on this book it would be great to hear your thoughts!

I finally got internet back to my laptop in my condo, and thank the sweet lord. That’s another reason why I’m writing a post this late at night, it feels good to lounge on my couch and just write again!
This week has been somewhat bad in terms of workouts and diet. I’m not sure why my diet has sucked, but I’ve been feeling so lethargic and lazy, and because I’ve felt so crappy, I could easily justify having spaghetti/garlic bread/Caesar salad for dinner last night. BARF!! I ate the two things I advise against ALL THE TIME! Gluten and dairy!! I swear to god, after I ate it I became SO gassy and burpy, so moody and SO TIRED. I was also really tired today and it just wasn’t good. I had planned on working out today, doing resistance training for my legs/abs, but alas, because of my lack of energy I managed to make it 45 minutes on the elliptical. Not what I had planned, but at least I mustered up the energy to do something.
I had mentioned in a previous post that Michelle from Push.Pump.Progress and I will be running the 10km Zoo Run here in Toronto next month. It’s literally 1 month away minus a day. Want to know how much I’ve been running? About zero. Zero running is what has happened since my half-marathon and I’m getting a touch nervous. For whatever reason I’m nervous that the 10km run is going to suck and I’m going to have a crap time, but so far I’m so not motivated to get out and work on my speed, or my hill training (there are a lot of hills in this run) or just my endurance in general. I need something to motivate me. I think Michelle and I agreed that we’re going to do 10 and 1’s, so run 10 minutes, walk 1 minute, so this weekend I’m going to bring my Gymboss timer and my J76CW clothes (the capris are great to run in!) and go for a run on the beach on Saturday morning. I’m going to not do so much drinking on Friday so I can get up and run 7-9ish km via 10 and 1’s. Wish me luck! I’d also love some motivating words, as so far nothing has been helping L.

On a fun note however, I got 4 Lara Bar samples in the mail today and I plan on tasting them over the weekend, so I'll be able to write a solid review (some of them you can't buy in Canada yet!) and then guess what - GIVEAWAY! You know how much I love Lara Bars because I talk about them all the time, but just wait for this giveaway, it's AWESOME! You will DIE. In the best way possible of course :).

Anyways my loves, I think I’m going to call this a nice short bloggy update and also call it a night. Maybe get a start on my book and see if that helps the lack of motivation!
Stay sweet.
xoxo

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

"Alice" Photoshoot Photos

Good Afternoon Beautiful,

I mentioned about a month or so ago that I did a photoshoot with an "Alice in Wonderland" theme to it. I've gotten a few photos back so I've decided to show you!

The photographer is amazing, her name is Tara Noelle and you can go directly to her website by clicking her badge on the right hand side of my blog. Check these out and let me know your thoughts!

The Rabbit

The White Queen

The Mad Hatter

The Mad Hatter

The Rabbit

Alice

The Rabbit

The Rabbit
Tara said the photos of the rabbit are her favourite :). I can't wait to see more. So far on Facebook the close up of me in the hat has been the winner!

Stay sweet.
xoxo

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

canfitpro Weekend & The Awards Gala!

Good evening Beautiful,

I’m sorry I haven’t blogged in a long time. I have so much to share with you, but for some reason my laptop won’t connect to the internet in my condo and it’s suuuuper frustrating, so I’m going into work early tomorrow to post my blog!
This past weekend was a whirlwind of amazing things! Let’s start with Friday. I got to the annual Toronto canfitpro conference around 9, and the Opening Ceremonies were at 9:45. I sat and talked to my old bosses husband while I waited for C to do his thing in his first meet and greet session after grabbing us a couple of Starbucks coffee’s. We met up with some friends outside of the opening ceremonies, and when we got in found a seat comfortably in the back. I watched some of the presenters that I used to work with go on stage and present other new/returning presenters with the annual awards. Lawrence Biscontini (findlawrence.com) was the Master of Ceremonies and did an amazing job – he’s always so entertaining and made me laugh the entire time!
Simon Whitfield, the Olympic Triathlete from Canada was the Keynote speaker this year. He walked us through each Olympics and shared with us his secrets of how he made it through. There were definitely a few things/quotes that stuck with me from his speech. The first is “Think is spacious ways” and the second is “Get obsessed. Stay obsessed.”. The first quote came from when he had first decided to compete in the triathlon as a team, as opposed to only one person from the country. It helped them win and the year after, other countries did the same thing (unfortunately for them). “Get obsessed. Stay obsessed” was a quote that his father used to tell him. This quote should be used when you want to accomplish a goal more than anything, which Simon did. He became obsessed with training, and he stayed obsessed till … well… he still is. At the end he talked about how he crashed in the past London Olympics, and his collar bone was still actually broken. He was definitely an inspiration and an amazing opening to the whole weekend. What a great way to just get the cranks turning in my mind. After his speech I couldn’t wait to get going on my sessions for the rest of the weekend.
After the Opening Ceremonies were over, C and I grabbed a bite to eat with about 13 other people (I was good and had salad with a salmon fillet!) and then one of C’s employees and I went to the tradeshow together because everyone else had a session starting at a different time than we did. The tradeshow was amazing this year. I always enjoy it because I always run into a ton of people I know and haven’t seen all year, but this year they had a huge section blocked off for a live Crossfit competition. If you’ve ever seen Crossfit, you’ll know how the guys look sans their shirts… well, this was a lot of them. It was faaaantastic. I also got to check out some new and different products that I’d never seen, different protein bars and protein shakes, and even got some samples to take home with me.
My only other session on Friday was a session put on by GoodLife’s CEO and President, David Patchell-Evans. I’ve seen and listened to him speak many times, but I enjoy going to his sessions because 1. He motivates me big time and 2. I’ve known him literally since I was about 6 years old and I always like to show him my support! I shared my hopes and my dreams with my partner in crime (C’s employee) and took some great notes about “My Roadmap to Success”. On a side note - I got A TON of compliments on my J76CW top that I wore on Friday. I got to tell a few people about how it's Canadian made - they were impressed! Check out the link on the side of my blog to be taken to their website - they have a ton of great products, even some clothes made from bamboo!! I hope the people I spoke with check it out...
Friday night after the conference I went out for dinner with a couple good friends, Marina and Gillian and came home and called it a night. C was out with his fellow co-workers so I crashed when I got in!
Saturday I had to be up and at a session for 9:30am. I 1000% was not missing this session because the session was about eating clean and the speaker was the Eat Clean Queen herself, Tosca Reno. I was super excited to finally hear her speak in person, and it was everything I’d hoped and more. She’s so motivational and she puts things in a “no bullshit” manner, it’s exactly what I needed to get that spark back in me. After her session I made the trek across the entire convention center, bought one of her books and waited in line for probably half an hour to get her to sign it, meet her in person and snap a quick photo with her… see!

Can you believe this woman is 53 years old?? She’s competing in a bikini competition in October – I KNOW… I’m 23 years old and wish I looked as good as she does. I guess I have 30 years to get there though J. Just kidding. Tosca has recently given up eating grains and dairy as well and I’m SO PUMPED that she mentioned it! She didn’t say she was paleo, but that’s basically what she is now and I LOVE IT! Not only will I be able to use more of her recipes without having to tweek them, but when I tweet any questions I might have to her, I know she won’t recommend any grains or dairy. Score! She is seriously amazing.
After I met her and got my book signed I went to another session of 5 amazing women in the fitness industry. They did a panel presentation, and the women were Lynne Brick from Brick Bodies in the US, Molly Napolitano from GlobalFit in the US, Shannon Fable from Sunshine Fitness Solutions in the US, Amanda Vogel from Canada, Mo Hagan from GoodLife Fitness in Canada and then the special speaker was Tosca again. They each gave a little 10 minute blurb about their expertise in the fitness industry, and then Tosca talked for about half an hour which left time for Q&A at the end. I took a ton away from this session and I’m so thankful I went to it.
After that session I went for coffee with Molly because her and I have known each other for years and we wanted to catch up. It was nice talking to her, she’s such a great woman. You can check out her blog here, and you’ll see how great she is!
Saturday night was the GoodLife’s annual Awards Gala, the one night I’ve been super excited for, for MONTHS. It was so much fun getting dressed up, doing my hair, getting my dress on and rocking my hot pink pumps. I got to see A TON of people I don’t see on a regular basis and catch up. Unfortunately I didn’t realize this at the time, but C and I took zero photos together. The only real photos I have are these two:
Rocking out!! :)

Myself and Amanda

Amanda and I were roommates in college, she was my very first roommate actually, so it’s always super fun to see her at work functions, if only briefly. I saw a lot of old friends from London. There was a fellow SPA there, but I don’t think she saw me. I tried waving to her, but she didn’t see, so we didn’t get to snap a photo together. No biggie!
J.
Unfortunately I didn’t make it to any of my Sunday sessions because I literally didn’t get out of bed until 5pm. SO BAD!! I may have had a few drinks at the Gala, and woke up with a super headache. C had to go to another event that night for our company, so even though he was really hurting too, he mustered up the energy and got his behind to the event. I on the other hand, decided to nap. When I woke up I felt 1000% better, and decided to go to the grocery store to pick up some food for dinner. I picked out a recipe before I went and decided to make a paleo version of Chicken Divan.
This is the recipe I used:
Ingredients
- 1.5 lbs of boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 4 cups of broccoli florets cut into bite size pieces
- 1 cup of sliced mushrooms cut up
- ½ cup onions finely diced
- 1 cup of canned coconut milk
- ½ teaspoon of sea salt (more or less to taste)
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon of curry powder
- 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
- sliced almonds (or cashews)
Directions
1. Pre-heat the oven to 350.
2. Place the raw chicken in a pan and cover with water. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Bring the water to a boil and let it cook for 12-15 minutes.



3. Remove the chicken and boil the broccoli for about 5 minutes in the same water.
4. Drain the broccoli, place in a big mixing bowl. Cut the chicken into bite size pieces and add to bowl, as well as the mushrooms, onions, the coconut milk and all spices.

5. Mix well, then spread into a 9x11 baking dish and sprinkle the top with sliced almonds (I used crushed cashews because I didn’t have almonds).
6. Bake for 30 minutes.

It was really easy and it’s sooooo goooooooood. I’ve ate it for 3 meals already. I used mild curry powder for this recipe, next time I might using half hot and half mild just to give it an extra kick.
Fun news! I signed up for the Toronto Oasis Zoo Run today. It’s a 10km race, 5km of it is around the Toronto Zoo, and the other 5 is through the Toronto Zoo. I’ve heard there’s a ton of hills, so that should be fun (ah, not really). So I have to actually start running outside now. I’m at my friends bachelorette party all weekend in Wasaga Beach so I’m getting up on Saturday morning to go running, hopefully the weather is nice!

There is a ton in this post, so I’m going to call it a night. I hope everyone had a great weekend! Let me know what you did, and if you went to canfitpro tell me what you thought! J
Stay sweet.
xoxo

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

It's FINALLY canfitpro Weekend!! GYMBOSS Giveaway Winner!

Happy Hump Day Beautiful,

I hope the first half of your week went well! Mine has gone by slower than I would like but that makes sense, I’ve been REALLY excited for this weekend for months. In my opinion, it’s my favourite weekend of the whole year. It’s the canfitpro International Conference and Tradeshow ALL WEEKEND LONG! That means fitness, fitness and MORE fitness! I get to see a lot of old friends, meet up with new friends, and the best part is our company’s annual awards gala that happens on Saturday night. I’m so excited to get all dressed up and go and enjoy myself with thousands of fellow co-workers.
I've got a start on my snacks for the weekend! No time for
a whole meal when I'm running from session to session!
On Friday, I’m going to meet up with C because he has to be there long before I do, and him, myself and some friends are going to go to the Opening Ceremonies where we’ll be seeing Simon Whitfield speak, and see some presenters from last year awarded with the annual awards for “best presenter” in a bunch of different categories. Hopefully I will know some of them from when I worked at canfitpro and will be able to congratulate them in person! Then we’ll probably check out the tradeshow (it’s HUGE!) and then I’m off to my sessions for my day. I’m going to a special session on Friday night with some of my close co-workers called “Change Anything”. It’s for Goodlife associates specifically. It’s going to be so motivating… !! I’m having a couple of my friends over on Friday night for some girl chat and some wine, so I’m definitely looking forward to that.
I have sessions all day on Saturday, and I’m going to a panel on Women in the Fitness Industry in the afternoon, and I’m actually going for coffee with one of the speakers on the panel afterwards to catch up, and I’m really looking forward to that. Molly Napolitano (you can check out her blog here!) and I have known each other for a few years now because of working at canfitpro, and she’s honestly, one of the sweetest, most genuine people I know. I look forward to seeing her every year; she’s one of the only presenters from canfitpro that I still stay in touch with. So there’s that. Then I have some more sessions, and then I get to go home and get ready for the gala! I promise you all I will have A TON of pictures. A fellow Sweat Pink Ambassador will be there, so maybe we’ll snap a photo together so you can see how great we look all gussied up and not in gym clothes! ;)
Sunday, well… that all depends on how the gala goes. There will be some drinks. And then probably some more drinks, but there is one session I don’t want to miss. Peter Twist, founder of Twist Conditioning is doing a session as a “closing ceremonies” type of thing. He’s a great speaker and I can’t wait to hear his very motivating words. This whole weekend is going to be one to recharge my batteries and remotivate the CRAP out of me! All of the energy is always so contagious, being around people who make fitness their entire life. Seeing people who are in such good shape, people who value the importance of exercise and nutrition as much as I do, and people who love improving themselves in every way possible. If you’ve never gone to this amazing event you need to check it out. They hold about 10 different conferences across Canada (I’m not sure of the specific number, and Toronto is the largest in the country) so you should be able to find one in your area – you can see the upcoming conferences on their website here.
Because this weekend is this massive weekend full of fitness, obviously I want to look and feel my best, so I’ve been reeeeally good with my diet and workouts lately. I started running outside on the weekend, although I haven’t ran outside all week. I have done TRX twice, and I took a rest day because I was feeling very run down.  I’m glad I did because today I feel 1000% better. I’ve been eating so clean. A lot of chicken, and a lot of tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini and kale. No alcohol, lots of water and green tea and a Lara Bar here and there for snack. Oh, and some bananas J. SO GOOD. And I feel amazing!! Ah – so much energy. This is what this coming weekend does to me!
Ok... so now the fun stuff (as if the previous wasn’t fun… ahem.. so fun!). The GYMBOSS Interval Timer GIVEAWAY WINNER IS….
Dah dah dah daaaaaaaaaaaaah…….
Lori Beneteau from Journey to Fit & Healthy! Lori, you have 48 hours to email me your mailing information at sarah.ohm@hotmail.ca! A big thank you to GYMBOSS for generously agreeing to send a interval timer to the winner! Keep us in the loop Laurie, and let us know how you like it! Congrats! I expect to see some pictures of you doing your HIIT/planks with your new timer! :) xoxo
I have some more really amazing giveaways in the next couple of months, so make sure you stay tuned for when I post them! You WON'T want to miss out on them!
So this is the kind of thing I've been eating religiously these past couple of weeks... tonight I'm making shrimp with spaghetti squash and kale for dinner, fried up in a litte balsmaic/chilli pepper EVOO cooking oil. I haven't actually made it yet, but it's working out nciely in my mind. Ok... give me an hour or so, I'll track my recipe and share it with you AS SOON as I'm done!!.... Uno momento :)............................................................................................................................................
Bite size pieces of kale :)
Ingredients
- 1 spaghetti squash, whole
- Fresh kale, about 1/4 - 1/2 a bunch, leaves cut up into bite size pieces
- 1 bag of shrimp
- 1 tbsp of minced garlic
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- dried chilli peppers to taste
Squash and kale in pan cooking
Directions
- Put the spaghetti squash whole, in a roasting pan, in the oven at 375 for 1 hour.
- When the squash is done, take it out and let it cool off.
- Cut it in half length wise, but be careful, it might still be really hot inside.
- Scoop out the "guts" that include the seeds and super stringy stuff.
- Drizzle the olive oil and balsamic vinegar in a pan and heat it up to medium heat.
- Add the kale, and string out half of the squash into the pan.
- Add the garlic and the chilli peppers.
- Stir around, mix it up and let it cook for about 10 minutes.
- Cook the shrimp in another pan in some butter and garlic.
- When the shrimp is cooked, add it to the kale and squash.
- Once the kale and squash are cooked enough, remove from heat and enjoy!
This is the finished product, as you can probably
tell I've already helped myself to some and it was delish!
With all recipes just adjust to personal preferance. I literally have never made this before, nor was it a recipe I found online. I was thinking about what to eat for dinner tonight, and I remembered that I had to use up the squash and the kale because they were going to go bad. It was actually pretty good! I enjoy cooking and creating fun things like this. Makes me feel proud!
Anyways, I hope you enjoy the recipe if you decide to try it! Congrats to Lori again for winning the GYMBOSS giveaway, and stay tuned for more canfitpro updates!
Stay sweet.
xoxo

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Guest Post! Josephine from Plant Based Runner

Good afternoon Beautiful,

I'm excited to be featuring a fellow Sweat Pink Ambassador on my blog today. Meet Josephine! I'm so excited that she's given me (and you) some smoothy recipes because 1. I LOVE smoothies, and 2. they are so great after a run when you don't feel like eating anything heavy and since I just started running again, what more motivation do I need to hit the pavement than to know that one of these sweet smoothies is there waiting for me? I'd use an althernative to cow's milk as well since I don't eat dairy, so I'm really glad she included that. I hope you enjoy her post!

My name is Josephine I love running and I blog over at Plant Based Runner this is my first time doing a blog swap and I am lucky to be paired with Sarah!
Not much can compete with a post run or post work out smoothie. The cold, refreshing, replenishing sweetness is just what I want and need. I’m not sure who he or she was but I love the creator of the post workout smoothie trend.

I generally make a smoothie by combining a serving (or ½ serving) of protein powder, a handful of frozen fruit and a cup or so of milk. Simple, effective and delicious.  I don’t digest cows milk products very well so I use soy, almond or coconut milk and hemp protein or a non-dairy blend of proteins such as Vega (hemp, pea and rice).  I have had others ‘test’ my smoothie recipes with cow’s milk and whey protein and they tasted delicious.

Below are two of my go to recipes:
Chocolate Nutty Butter Banana Punch!
Chocolate Nutty Butter Banana Punch
1 Cup Chocolate Milk  (Cows, Soy or Almond)
1/2 - full serving of chocolate protein powder (Whey, Hemp, Vega or you favorite)
1 tablespoon of nut butter  (Peanut, Cashew, Almond, etc)
1/2 to a full frozen banana (frozen is optimal it creates a thicker smoothie)
Blend all ingredients for 20-30 seconds or until blended and enjoy!

Blueberry Strawberry Banana Chia Seed Smoothie
1 Cup of Milk. (Almond Vanilla is my favorite for this)
Blueberry Strawberry
Banana Chia Seed Smoothie
1/2 to a full serving of protein powder (I like to use Vega Vanilla but any vanilla or chocolate protein will work)
1 tablespoon of Chia Seeds
1/2 to a full frozen banana.
1 Big handful of frozen strawberries and blueberries (1 total or 4-6 strawberries & 10-15 blueberries)
Blend all ingredients.
Slurp down.

Depending on the milk, protein and nut butter you use this shake should yield one serving with 200-300 calories, 8-18 grams protein, 5-12 fat, and 5-12 fiber. The perfect post run recovery. What do you put into your favorite smoothies?
If you’d like to hear more about me, my slow running, my love for smoothies & other plant based foods or my dog I can be found on twitter @joesahfeen for awesome photos I am @josephine on instagram or check out my blog here.

REMEMBER! Only 1 day left to enter my GYMBOSS Giveaway!
Mandatory
1. Like My (Mostly) Healthy Life on Facebook.
2. Like Gymboss on Facebook and leave me a comment on here when you have done so telling me HOW you would use a GYMBOSS Interval Timer!


Extra Entries
1. Follow me (@sarahohm) and Gymboss (@GYMBOSS) on Twitter.
2. Like My (Mostly) Healthy Life via Google Friend Connect on my blog (click "Join This Site").
3. Tweet about my giveaway, cut & paste the following "I just entered @sarahohm #giveaway for a @GYMBOSS interval timer on my mostlyhealthylife.blogspot.com!"
4. Share this giveaway on your Facebook page and tag myself and GYMBOSS in the post!
This adds up to a possible 7 entries into my giveaway! Please leave one comment per entry on this post after completing each entry. This contest closes on Wednesday August 15, at 9:00PM (Toronto time!). I will announce the winner the following day! Contest is open to Canada & US residents! GOOD LUCK!

Stay sweet.
xoxo

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Sorry If The Flow Of This Post Is Strange.

Good evening Beautiful,
How did your weekend go? Did you do anything fun? See anyone special? Lucky for me, I did both! Yesterday morning my mom, dad and sister drove two hours to come spend the day/night in Toronto! It’s always fun when they come to visit. I love seeing my family; I wish they could come visit more often! They got here around 11, and then I took my mom to Liberty Village to a fun kitchen store where she found a fun new lunch bag and a paring knife. It was fun to take her to a store she’s never been to before.
When we got back, we all headed out into the rain to walk to the Rogers center to catch the Jays vs Yankees game. We dropped some tickets off at will call because even more family was coming to meet us. Eventually they all arrived and there was 11 of us in total at the baseball game. My sister and I left early to go grab some food and beverages (aka beer) for everyone after the game when they all came back to our house. We got to visit with some family we don’t usually see unless it’s a holiday, so that was super nice. Then 2 cousins left to go catch a birthday dinner and we all headed up to our other cousins house to have a delicious dinner! We had burgers and salmon, so I opted for the paleo version, a bbq hamburger patty, a salmon fillet and a TON of salad. I even passed up on desert, chocolate cake, vanilla ice cream, homemade whipped cream and cherries.
C and I had plans to go home and go out for a couple drinks last night, so we left my cousins house around 9:30 and when we got home, decided we were SO POOPED and opted for bed instead. What an intense Saturday night… just kidding J.
I’m glad we went to bed early because today I got up BEFORE 9am and decided to go for a run. I looked outside and the sun was shining and I knew I just had to get out there. This was my first outdoor run since my half-marathon in May, so I was a bit nervous to see how I did. I didn’t time myself because I just wanted to hit the pavement and enjoy my time outside. I actually felt surprisingly comfortable running outside still. I did a classic route that I did a lot when I was doing short runs for my half-marathon, so I kept it simple to see how it felt compared to when I was running more. I surprised myself and did almost 7km in abouuuut 35-40 minutes (I wasn’t watching the clock). I only needed to walk 2-3 times (plus the breaks I was FORCED to take at stoplights J) and the best part for me was when I came to the end, there was always a hill I needed to sprint up and really focus and concentrate  because it would always kill my legs. It felt SO EASY today!! I was SHOCKED! But I’m super happy about it – obviously J. Although this afternoon my one hip has been a bit sore… not sure if it’s just not used to running, I don’t think I did anything to it, but I’ll keep you posted.
I love being able to go out and just run for 45 minutes, or an hour, just because. It’s great alone time, it’s good to relieve stress, it’s so much fun to run throughout the downtown core of Toronto. For all of my new readers, in the very beginning of my training, I was running downtown and actually ran past Stacy McKenzie, one of the judges on Canada’s Next Top Model. I tweeted to her and she tweeted me back and told me next time to stop her and say hello! How sweet… I will probably never see her again L. I always seem to find fun bars, or restaurants that I’ve never seen before (mostly because when I’m in that area it’s usually at night, after a few beverages… maybe…) so I always find fun places to check out. I love running down Queen St too, I get to make a list of fun new trends I enjoy and want to try, just from some brief window shopping… man I love Toronto J.
Also, today was a big day because I WENT BLONDE AGAIN!! I was blonde for years, but one day last winter decided it would be cool to go dark (which I had been for years before I went blonde). Needless to say, I regretted going dark instantly, so today was a great day… this is how my hair looks now J. 

It’s a short week at work for me this week because Friday is the first day of the annual canfitpro conference in Toronto. Friday morning I’m going to get up, go to the convention center, and will watch, along with 5000 other fitness enthusiasts and professionals, Simon Whitfield, the Olympian, speak on stage. Lucky for me I worked for canfitpro for 4 years, and I’m still in touch with the Education Director, Maureen Hagan, on a semi-regular basis (I’ve known her since I was 13…) and asked if it would be at all possible to get a picture with her and Simon for my blog readers. She told me when and where to be, and she’ll try her best… so we’ll see! Fingers crossed for me please! I will also be meeting the Eat Clean Queen herself, Tosca Reno. Can you tell I’m only a little bit excited!? I know for a fact that she’s read this blog, because I posted about her, tweeted to her, and then she followed me on Twitter. Ah-mazing!
Unfortunately in terms of this blog post, I have nothing more to write. I only managed to get in 1 workout this weekend (my run) and I didn’t actually make anything new and exciting for food. What a bummer. I promise some more good things soon – I have a TRX workout tomorrow and Tuesday, some beach volleyball, possibly fit in a run somewhere, and then I’ll have TONS to tell you and show you next weekend including photos from the awards gala I’ve been ranting and raving about for months. You’ll finally be able to see the outfit I bought! I know how excited you are J.
I’m on #runchat tonight so I’m writing in patches. Sorry if the flow of this post is strange. :)

For those who haven't already done so, or have been living under a rock - ENTER MY GIVEAWAY! Only a few days left! You can win a sick wicked interval timer from GYMBOSS that looks like this...



Mandatory
1. Like My (Mostly) Healthy Life on Facebook.
2. Like Gymboss on Facebook and leave me a comment on here when you have done so telling me HOW you would use a GYMBOSS Interval Timer!


Extra Entries
1. Follow me (@sarahohm) and Gymboss (@GYMBOSS) on Twitter.
2. Like My (Mostly) Healthy Life via Google Friend Connect on my blog (click "Join This Site").
3. Tweet about my giveaway, cut & paste the following "I just entered @sarahohm #giveaway for a @GYMBOSS interval timer on my mostlyhealthylife.blogspot.com!"
4. Share this giveaway on your Facebook page and tag myself and GYMBOSS in the post!
This adds up to a possible 7 entries into my giveaway! Please leave one comment per entry on this post after completing each entry. This contest closes on Wednesday August 15, at 9:00PM (Toronto time!). I will announce the winner the following day! Contest is open to Canada & US residents! GOOD LUCK!
Stay sweet.
xoxo