Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Short & Sweet

Good evening Beautiful,

Originally I didn’t plan on writing tonight, but I decided to write something short but sweet, literally.
Today I had my regular coffee at my regular time (11am), but today I decided to add a packet of Splenda to my coffee which I usually take with just cream. The size of the coffee is big enough that I figured it’d only add a little bit of sweetness but it made it so sweet, I couldn’t even drink the whole thing. So that was fine, whatever… but then the kicker came about an hour later when I started feeling seriously uncomfortable in my stomach. It was grumbling, and gassy and well, I’ll leave it at that and bare you the details.
I was telling Jenny what I had ate and it was completely paleo and clean so there was no reason for my stomach to be so upset, but I remember that silly little packet of chemicals that I consumed an hour or so earlier….. There has been a ton of controversy about sweeteners lately and I don’t remember the last time I consumed Splenda. The last time I had a sweetener was when I used organic Krisda Stevia to bake my gluten free cupcakes, but it didn’t mess with my stomach like Splenda did. It was awful and lasted all afternoon – basically I learned the hard way that I’m no longer treating myself to sweet coffee anymore. BOO.
Today I was so damn sore from the workout Jenny and I did yesterday… I couldn’t even sit at 90degrees with my legs out straight without my hamstrings really pulling. We did 30 minutes on the stepper and then decided to take about 15 minutes to stretch, most of it on my legs. A short but sweet workout for today. I’m not sure if I’m going to be able/will want to exercise tomorrow… I’m meeting a lady I’ve known for years but haven’t seen in years for lunch tomorrow and it may (or may not be) my birthday so I might just come home after work and do nothing! At least that’s what I have planned for now!
Tonight for dinner I attempted to use the baby bok choy that I was telling you about yesterday and this is what I found/came up with:
Beef & Baby Bok Choy
1 package of baby bok choy
2 packages of cut up bits of extra lean beef
1.5 cups of organic chicken stock
Garlic, Minced to taste
1. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan.
2. Saute the garlic until it looks almost brown and then add the beef.
3. Don’t cook it completely, add the bok choy once the beef is about half done.
4. Add the chicken stock.
5. Let the chicken stock boil until the beef and the bok choy is cooked
6. You can add S&P to taste, or any other seasoning you’d prefer.

SUPER EASY. We ate it over rice tonight (late dinner, I was too lazy to make a clean carb for din.. whoops) and it was perfect on rice. Next time I’d try to make cauliflower rice to make the meal completely paleo.
Have you tried a new recipe this week yet? What was it?
Happy Halloween tomorrow if I don’t get a chance to post! If you want some tips about steering clear of sugar this Halloween, check out the blog I wrote for my company that was posted today. Click here to be taken to it directly, and share it if you like it. After all, sharing is caring!
Stay sweet.

Monday, October 29, 2012

From Deadlifts To Kale

Good afternoon Beautiful,

Happy Monday! Monday – ahh, my favourite day of the week. Mine flew by, what about yours? Work was kind of crazy, I had a meeting and a conference call and a bajillion emails that I should probably work on this evening but instead I’m blogging and watching Long Island Medium. Have you ever watched this tv show? I cry, ball, every time I watch it… but I keep watching it which is kind of stupid. I friggen love this show. Theresa is so sassy and so funny, it’s just hilarious. Her hair never moves, I swear. And I’ve never seen anyone with longer nails, I don’t know how she makes it through a day with those honkers.
I was excited for today because it’s day 1 of my weight training focus and I didn’t want to miss it. Jenny and I went to work out late this afternoon and it was super fun working out with her in the weight room. Normally we go running, but not anymore not just because I’m retiring from running for a while, but this hurricane weather does not make for good times when wanting to run outside. I had planned on doing a full body workout today but there were a few exercises I knew I really wanted to do; bench press, squats with an Olympic bar and rack and deadlifts. So we definitely did those. Our workout looked like this:
Bench Press, 3 sets, 10 reps. First set was just the bar, last 2 sets I added 2x2.5lbs plates (ha).
Deadlifts, 2 sets, 10 reps, 60lbs bar
Squats, 3 sets, 10 reps, 1st set on the Smith machine with bar + 20lbs, 2nd set was on Smith Machine with bar + 40lbs, 3rd set was just an Olympic bar not on the Smith Machine.
Hammer strength Chest Press, 3 sets, 10/10/8.5 reps, 20lbs on each arm first 2 sets, 15lbs on each arm last set.
Wall push-ups (in between each set of chest press, as many as possible until Jenny was done her set)
Arnold Press, 2 sets, 10 reps, 5lbs weights
Lateral Raises, 2 sets, 10 reps, 5lbs weights
Front Raises, 2 sets, 10 reps, 5lbs weights (these three were performed back to back twice without stopping)
Bicep Curl, 12.5lbs dumbbells, 2 sets, 10 reps on each arm
Tricep Dips, body weight, 2 sets, 10 reps
Bicep Curl with 20lbs bar, 2 sets, 10 reps
Ab crunches on ball with 12.5lbs dumbbell on chest, 5 sets, 10 reps
WHEEEEW… we packed a lot into one workout! My arms were very jelly like after the workout. You know it was good when!
Tonight on the way home from work I stopped to get some groceries because I wanted to pick up some fresh veggies for my meals this week. I picked up my usual avocado, kale, tomatoes, zucchini and then I grabbed a couple other things that are completely brand new to me, and might need help coming up with how to use. First off, I grabbed a small bag of baby bok choy. I’ve seen this used in a lot of paleo recipes before, so I have no doubt that I’ll be eating this and enjoying every bite of it! Secondly I bought a baggy of fresh cranberries. I have absolutely no idea what I’m going to do with this… all suggestions welcome. Thirdly, I bought a can of 100% pumpkin puree. This year has been my first year kind of diving into the realm of pumpkin. I had my first slice of pumpkin pie, my first pumpkin spiced latte… so I thought I’d keep the streak going. Only… I have no idea what the heck to use it for. I’m not big on baking and sweets… is there some way to use pumpkin puree without having to make cookies or pie?
I guess that’s another fun goal for me for this week. Figure out how to use fresh cranberries and pumpkin. I was also thinking in the grocery store… I know people love the taste of pumpkin, but what are the health benefits of pumpkin? Then I thought the same about cranberries because these are the two things that I’m really at a loss of how to use. So I Googled it.
Cranberries are most popular in the prevention of urinary tract infections and that’s partly related to the proanthocyanidins, their special nature acts as a barrier to bacteria that might otherwise latch onto the urinary tract lining. Fresh cranberries also help prevent cardiovascular disease and helps protect the liver, this is only in food form, not in an extract or anything. Also, the cancer preventive benefits of cranberries are now known to extend to cancers of the breast, colon, lung, and prostate.
Source here.
Pumpkins, because of their bright orange colour have a high amount of carotenoids which assist in staving off the free radicals in the body and help prevent premature aging (bonus!), cardiovascular diseases and other infections. It’s rich in vitamin A which helps to boost the immune system a lot. It’s full of vitamin C and that offers protection of various forms of cancer. It’s full of friggen EVERYTHING –
find out more here!
So all in all I picked up some pretty cool foods. I’m excited that I’m learning so much about foods since starting this blog, but this week I’m taking my knowledge to the next level. Well, I’m starting my journey on taking it to the next level. Today my first installment of my tuition was accepted, I got email confirmation that my school books are being sent to my house tomorrow with UPS, which means I should have them on Wednesday or Thursday, and I’ve been added to the online discussion forum for all of my classmates. So basically, the madness that is the next two years of my life has begun. I’m so FLIPPING excited! Guess what I’m going to do ALL WEEKEND? School work J Because I can of course! The lovely people at Vibrant Lifestyle, which is a health food store close to me told me to stop by anytime to get some advice if I want any. I’m going to make a visit there this weekend to pick up some fun foodie things I think. Then I’ll be able to share my findings with you and I’ll probably be whipping up a new recipe or two on the weekend (and before since I have cranberries, pumpkin and bok choy to use up) so I’ll be able to share that with you as well!
Tonight for dinner C is making us steaks (his steaks are the best I’ve ever had, besides my dad’s J) and I’m baking some butternut squash and KALE! I haven’t had kale in like a week and I’m dyyyyying! I’m pretty surprised at how much I enjoy kale. I don’t even want a new recipe (although I learned from Kasey at savvysassyme.com that she puts her kale and all her oil and garlic and salt into a baggie and mixes it up in the bag and pours it onto the baking sheet so it’s all completely covered) because I love the way my kale is… It’s not often you find a brand new food that becomes your favourite food instantly. Kale is mine!

So overall, this week is off to a good start. Check off my first workout of the week! I will be getting school books this week, and some foodie experimentations? You’re going to have to keep coming back here to see what I come up with!
PS – by now you’ve probably noticed my blog has a new facelift! Thanks to Caroline over at sweetcarolineblog.com who did this for me - I love it! Huge shout out to her for doing this for me! Let me know what you think about it!
PPS – I received a really nice email from a reader today, Steve at myfoodmyway.ca sent me a message introducing me to his website and letting me know that his whole office is a fan of my blog (YAY! Leave me a comment and introduce yourself!), and basically it’s kind of cool what they do. Check it out when you get a chance!
Stay sweet.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Just A Girl & Her Tea...

Good afternoon Beautiful,

Sadly, it’s already Sunday afternoon which means back to work tomorrow! This week coming up is a relatively easy week for me, no health fairs to attend so that means good things for this girl! I have a ton of annual renewals coming up for January 1 and I need to get them out to the prospective companies as soon as possible because you can basically not count the last two weeks of December as anything productive because most people are away… which means in order for these thousands of GoodLife members, we need to get their stuff done early so they don’t go into the gym on January 1 and come up as cancelled. Whoopsies!
Last night I ended up making that chicken stew that I had mentioned in my post yesterday and it turned out amazing! This weekend has kind of been a cheat weekend in terms of food, I had two slices of a baguette last night with the stew, and the stew contains a little bit of flour and a little bit of cheese/cream. It was soooo heavenly though! Here’s the recipe (WARNING: This recipe is NOT paleo although I believe if you wanted to, it would be just as delicious without the cheese and flour, but I wasn’t in the mood to experiment last night).
Chicken, Celery Root & Stilton Stew
3 tbsp of vegetable oil (I used coconut oil!)
4 chicken breasts, skinless and bone-in (I used 8 boneless skinless chicken thighs)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour (this is where you could use almond flour I think… I couldn’t find any to try with)
2 cups of dark ale
3 cups of onion, coarsely chopped
8 cups of celery root, peeled and coarsely chopped (I used 4 cups of celery root and 4 cups of celery)
1 cup of carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped (I didn’t peel them)
½ cup of Stilton Blue Cheese crumbled
½ cup of 35% cream (this is optional. I did not read that until now)
2 tbsp of garlic, minced
2 tbsp fresh thyme chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste
1. In a large sauté pan, heat the oil over medium high heat and sear chicken until it’s brown on all sides, about 10 minutes.
2. Remove the chicken from the pan, and place in the slow cooker, the chicken will not be cooked through at this point.
3. Add the flour to the reserved fat in the pan and stir until the flour has been absorbed by the oil.
4. Slowly add 1 cup of the ale to the pan and stir to combine while scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan.
5. Once the mixture comes to a boil, add it to the slow cooker.
6. Add the onion, celery root, carrot, second cup of ale, cheese, cream, garlic, thyme and salt and pepper
7. Cook on low for 7 hours. When finished, carefully shred the chicken meat off the bone, discard bones and place meat back into the stew. Gently stir the stew and serve.
The top is before it's cooked and the bottom is the finished product!
This recipe is originally from the LCBO’s Food&Drink Magazine, but you can also find the original recipe by clicking here which takes you to the online version of the magazine. It’s a great recipe, and it doesn’t usually take 7 hours to cook. Mines been done in about 6 hours both times I’ve made it, just check every couple of hours and see what you think. The first time I made it I used bone in chicken, but found that I had to pick bones out of it every time I would eat it, that’s why I opted for boneless this time around and I don’t think it made it taste any different. I also added in 1 sweet potato just to give it some clean carbs, and I just love sweet potatoes.
Just as a random side note I wanted to take a paragraph or so and just talk about blog etiquette, this will be fast, I promise (if you don’t write a blog you can skip this paragraph)! When you post a recipe, it’s probably stemmed from an original recipe you found online or something, right? Or if you take a picture from someone else’s website, you cite it, right? If a friend or blogging buddy of yours does a giveaway and you’re interested in doing the same one, you should ask them, and give them some credit in your giveaway, right (especially if it’s not one that’s popular and not everyone is doing it!)? If you didn’t answer yes to all of the above, well, you should have. Citing your resources and giving credit where credit is due is super important in the blogging world, so if you’re a writer, please source where you got your info and ask for permission before using stuff off of other blogs. It’s just the right thing to do, and no one is going to care if you got your recipe from “so and so” instead of coming up with it yourself, same with pictures and giveaways…  People will actually respect you more as a writer if you’re giving credit to other writers as well. Thank you!
Ok – now that that’s over, onto the fun stuff. Me and C went to the mall today because I needed to drop off my necklace to Tiffany’s to have it cleaned, and I also needed to pick up two baggies of my favourite tea from David’s Tea to send to my new buddy from the Healthy Living Blogs Tea Swap! After I dropped off my necklace we went to David’s Tea and couldn’t resist buying tea for myself as well as for the lady I’m sending tea to. Check it out – I got two cans of amazing tea:

Mmmm, one can is a black tea called Cranberry Pear and the other is a rooibos tea called Green & Fruity. In my cup I have the black tea and you can see the cranberries and pears floating at the top. I’m drinking it now and it’s SO GOOD. Do you drink tea? I prefer loose leaf tea as opposed to tea bags, but ultimately I’ll drink tea in any form! Here are some fun facts about different kinds of teas:
Green Tea
Green tea is rich in polyphenols which are powerful antioxidants. Besides inhibiting the growth of cancer cells, they help kill cancer cells without harming healthy tissues. It’s also been shown to help lower LCL cholesterol and inhibit the formation of blood clots, which decreases chances of stroke or heart attack. Source here.
Black Tea
There has been studies proving that increased black tea consumption results in a decrease of cardiovascular disease. It’s also got an abundance of antioxidants in it which, like green tea, helps reduce the risk of cancer and could help with the treatment of brain injury to hearing loss!
Source here.
White Tea
White tea is also full of antioxidants like the first two teas, and it also helps with heart protection by thinning the blood, lowering blood pressure, and reducing cholesterol. Researchers have shown that people who drink more than 2 cups of tea per day were 50% less likely to die from a heart attack. It also showed that people who drank tea regularly had a greater bone density than people who don’t (YAY strong bones!).
Source here.
Herbal Tea
Herbal tea obviously has a lot of different kinds of herbs in it. I’m not going to go through a ton of the different herbs,
but click here to find common ones and their health benefits as well!
Rooibos Tea
I love rooibos tea, and this may be why. Rooibos tea helps aid the liver tissue regeneration after prolonged intoxication. It helps liver disease and potentially has therapeutic effects for respiratory ailments. For a full list of how rooibos tea can help,
click here for the source I used.
I love tea! It’s got so many great things about it, it’s just so hard not to love it! Ok, I’m done my tea now it’s off to the gym with C. One sec and I’ll come tell you what we did J
Ok, so we only went down to our condo gym for 30 minutes but we got in a pretty good upper body workout! C is great at doing upper body and pushing me. If you’ve ever met him, he’s friggen JACKED so I can trust him when he tells me what to do for my upper body. We did 2 mini-circuits that went like this:
10 push-ups
10 bicep curls on each arm
10 Arnold presses (shoulder press and pec dec combined with a dumbbell)
Repeat three times
10 reps seated row machine
15 reps back extension holding a dumbbell
15 reps sit-ups on the ab bench
Repeat three times
During these while he was doing his sets I’d hold some form of a plank and while I was doing mine he would hold some sort of a plank. We started out on our toes and went to knees if we were getting too tired. It was so fun! I definitely worked up a sweat and so did he! Now because my running season is over I’ll be spending a lot more time in the weight room. I’m not going to stop running all together by any means, but I will be doing a lot more weight training and less running since the weather is turning bad! I’m pretty excited. Do you have any weight training programs I can try or look into? I’d love some recommendations.
This week in total this is what I’ve done:
Sunday – 10km run
Monday – WOD with Jenny
Tuesday – off
Wednesday – 5km run with Jenny
Thursday – Upper body weights
Friday – off
Saturday – Toronto Women’s 8km Race
Sunday – Upper body weights
Yaaaye! This past week was pretty slack though, the workouts weren’t intense, I didn’t run very much coming up to my race but I didn’t want to so that my legs were well rested for the actual race. I think this week might look something like this:
Monday – Resistance training, full body
Tuesday – WOD on my own
Wednesday – off (I’m using my lunch to have lunch with someone I used to work with and if I’m being realistic I probably won’t workout at all)
Thursday – Run (weather permitting, sprints inside if the weather is bad)
Friday – Resistance training, full body
Saturday – Hot yoga with Marina maybe? (Marina, if you’re reading this – LMK!)
Sunday – Either off or a small run or a quick workout. I like lazy Sundays.
What do you have planned for this week? Anything new and exciting? What were your workouts for this week? Did you hit your fitness goals? Let me know! I love to encourage and make your workouts a BIG DEAL! Because they totally are! J
Stay sweet.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

My Last Race of 2012

Good afternoon Beautiful,

Today was a bittersweet day… today was my last race of 2012, The Toronto Women's 8km Race! I’m actually kind of glad because this fall the weather has been absolute crap and my last 3 races that I’ve done have been in the rain. Today was no better, and to top it off it wasn’t even a little bit warm like the other races were… it was COLD. I got out of the car and the first thing I said was “Oh.. I can see my breath”. I’m lucky to have such a great and supportive boyfriend to come with me. He got just as soaked as I did while waiting for me to cross the finish line. Luckily the race was sponsored by GoodLife Fitness (for women!) so we knew a lot of people there so C was able to hang out with them while I was running!
I met up with Michelle right before we started and then we met up with two gals I work with as well! This was my bosses first road race ever, and she was sooo nervous and excited! She ended up doing really well too! The race consisted of 420 women running either a 5km run or an 8km run. It went through Sunnybrook Park in North York, and unfortunately due to the rain, some of the path that we were running on was flooded. It got to a point where I was just running through the puddles because I was already soaking wet, so why not? J.
One cool thing about this race is that there is a water station of firemen handing out water. I’ve seen pictures of this, and they’re topless wearing firefighting pants and suspenders, basically it’s super-hot, I love firemen… I had big hopes for this. I got there and they were FULLY CLOTHED! The nerve, I’m soaking my ass off and running and you can’t manage to hand me a glass of water with no shirt on? J. Needless to say… I yelled out “AREN’T YOU SUPPOSED TO BE TOPLESS??? WHAT THE HELLLLLL!”, they laughed and apologized for my lack of luck hahaha. At least they were in good humour.
Michelle and I started out the first half of the race together and I was getting so tired (we were running like 5 minute km’s for the first half!) so I slowed down and let her go ahead, I took a few extra (but short) walk breaks and I managed to cross the finish line in 46:50. My goal was to do it under 50 minutes, but closer to 45 minutes so I succeeded!! My GPS watch and Michelle’s GPS app told us the route was actually 8.2km, so I’m sure I finished the actual 8km in sub 46! Michelle did the whole race in like 45 minutes which is AMAZING too. The two fine ladies I work with were only a little bit behind me too so we all finished in and around the same time – so awesome!
Another awesome thing about this race was the race kits! They were easily the best race kit I’ve ever gotten. It included a Mizuno headband (the green ones seen in the photos below!), a water bottle, a cliff bar, endurance drink crystals, a running gel and then the typical flyers. HOW COOL! I wasn’t going to wear the headband today but I’m SO glad I did since it was so cold out.
Here are some pictures from the race!
Me, Brad (Marketing Manager For GoodLife!),
Mo (VP Operations for Group EX of GoodLife Fitness!)
and A GoodLife Instructor - I forget her name!

Me, Tammy (Director Corporate Wellness GoodLife),
Tammy's Dad!, and Kristen (Senior Sales Manager Corproate Wellness GoodLife!)

Me and Michelle!

Me and Michelle!

I’m not putting up any of me crossing the finish line because for whatever reason I look ridiculously unflattering and they just don’t need to go public at any time J. After the race I was soaked, and freezing, and my feet were muddy and my shoes were full of water so it was an amazing feeling to get home and into the shower ASAP. I stood under the water for like 30 minutes. Just standing there, doing nothing. It was great. Even now after being home for about an hour, my feet are still cold! Oh well.  It was a great 2012 in terms of races. I did a total of 6 – 1 Half-Marathon, 2x10km, 1x8km and 2x5km! Starting out this year as a “non-runner”, I’d say that’s pretty good!
Today is obviously a pretty crappy day… what am I going to do all day. I think I’m going to make slow cooker stew! I made this delicious recipe last year for chicken stew. It wasn’t paleo as it has Stilton Blue Cheese in it as well as some flour. I’m going to try and substitute the flour for almond flour or rice flour and just suck it up that I can’t make the stew completely paleo. I will be able to post the recipe later tonight or tomorrow, but needless to say it takes about 8hours to cook so I can’t include it in this post!  Stay tuned though because this stew is AMAZING.
I also kind of want to go to the mall to buy some tea for the tea swap I’m doing… I need to send my partner some tea STAT. David’s tea never fails, I’ll pick up a bit of my two fav tea’s and send it off to her on Monday. I also have a necklace from Tiffany’s that is in dire need of cleaning… like, really badly.
That’s all on my agenda today! What are you doing on this gloomy Saturday? Did you participate in any races today? How was the weather?
Stay sweet.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Most Non-Paleo Post I've Ever Written

Good evening Beautiful,

Today I faxed in my registration form for school. This is both nerve racking and really exciting. It’s nerve racking because I’ve basically just given up all of my free time for the next two years. It’s exciting because it means that after months of deliberation I’m finally pulling the trigger and doing something I’m beyond passionate about. When I think about starting school, I get really excited because I love buying binders and pens and paper and notebooks. Turns out, when you do an online course, you basically only need your laptop. I’m kind of disappointed by this because 1. I love office supplies and any excuse to buy them is a good one, and 2. I’m a visual learner and the actual process of writing things down on paper helps me learn it better. This is a brand new way of learning for me, self-motivated I mean. There is no teacher at the front of the classroom hinting at certain things I’ll need to know for the final exam. There’s no set time to be in class and no specific homework or reading I have to do by a certain date. This is all up to me, which is stressful motivating enough for me. This course is what I love and it’s money directly out of my pocket, so you KNOW I’m not going to piss it away… It will be great! Now I just have to wait for the payment to come out and get my books and then I’ll really be committed!
Today has been a crazy day otherwise. I woke up late, had to get ready super quick to head out to Mississauga for the health fair. Didn’t get to eat breakfast, so when I got to the office at 1 I instantly scarfed down some leftover Spaghetti Squash Spaghetti then had to leave right at 4:30 so I could get downtown in time to meet my financial investments guy. It was fun meeting him for the first time. He knows what he’s talking about and we have a strategic plan and he’s glad I’m starting to save at such a young age because then, well basically, I’ll be LOADED by the time retirement comes around (haha). Well, I’m hoping at least. Fingers crossed.
Needless to say I didn’t get a workout in today. Although, when I got home from my meeting, the building elevators were down (again) so I had to climb the 18 floors to get to my condo… that kind of counts as a workout, right? Tomorrow is Friday (TGIF!) and I don’t usually workout on Friday’s, but because today ended up being an “off-day” I will have to make up for it tomorrow. Basically I’ll be doing upper body because I want to keep my legs rested for my race on Saturday. It’s my last race of 2012 so I need to KILL IT! It’s an 8km race and anything under 50 minutes I’ll be happy with, and of course my 5th racing medal of my collection! Race bling will motivate me time and time again… I guess I’ll do anything for a little bling!
The 7-day paleo challenge that Michelle has been hosting has been going pretty well, I’d say I stuck to it about 90% of the time. It ends Saturday at dinner so I still have a couple days to go. I had to cheat a couple of times when my blood sugar went low in the middle of the night (no, I did not eat 1000 calories like that one time, I did manage to gain some self-control since then I suppose) and I had to drink fruit punch. Or like tonight when I got home and scarfed down the piece of cassava cake that C had bought me earlier this week and I was trying to avoid. Have you ever had cassava cake? It’s friggen delicious, it’s Jamaican (at least I think it is? They sell it at the Jamaican restaurant that C and I often frequent) and it’s like a dense vanilla sponge. Hmm, let me Google what it really is.
It consists of cassava, sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, coconut milk, coconut cream, sugar, eggs, and coconut. Basically everything that I shouldn’t eat was in the thing that I just ate. What is cassava you might ask? Let me look. According to food.com, it’s a root native to South America but is now primarily grown in Africa where it’s an important staple. It’s 6-12 inches long and 2-3 inches wide and is covered with a tough brown skin. The flesh is crisp and white and it’s either bitter or sweet. Bitter cassava is poisonous unless it’s cooked and is used in the making of tapioca. Interesting description, but that’s fine, I’m not one to judge. There is your food lesson from me for the day!
Tomorrow night is my friends Halloween party, and Alyssa (it’s her brother that’s hosting it) and Trevor (remember them? They got married a little while back) will be in TO attending. I think C and I are going to make an appearance dressed as non-other but OURSELVES J and see them for a while! I don’t want to drink and party the night before a race. I wonder if they’re in town all weekend long, or just Friday night. I should find out. Speaking of parties, I’m having my birthday party on November 10th. 11 days after my real birthday. My plan is to obviously be as skinny and great looking as possible, but on the night of I also don’t want to be sloppy and high on sugar from cocktails. I will be drinking vodka soda all night, however instead of your traditional birthday cake or cupcakes, I will be making everyone a Caketini. What is a caketini you ask? Please see below.

Basically, you rim the glass in cake frosting and sprinkles so it’s festive. The drink itself is 2oz of marshmallow vodka (or 1oz of marshmallow, 1oz of cake vodka), 2 oz of cherry soda (I don’t know what cherry soda is, I’ve never heard of it. I plan on using like, diet cran with some soda water?) and 1 maraschino cherry to top it off. HOW CUTE ARE THEY. I’m only making 1 per person (that’s a lie, if anyone wants more they can, I’m only having one as my “cake”) so that not everyone is super hung over because of me the next day J. Isn’t that such a fun idea? Thank you Pinterest.
How did your Thursday go? As crazy as mine? Sorry, this post is like the most non-paleo, non-fitness related post I've ever written… I hope you still enjoyed it! I guess this post classify's as the "mostly" part of it's title! :)
Have you ever done fun and different for your birthday? Ever made Caketini’s? What’s your favourite birthday cocktail?
Stay sweet.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

My Big Fun Exciting News!

Good evening Beautiful,

This week is flying by for me, and I’m sure tomorrow will as well. I’m heading out to Mississauga tomorrow morning for a health fair at General Mills where I get to promote all the fun things that General Mills has set up for their employees through GoodLife Fitness! It’s pretty cool to educate and answer questions of people who may or may not be just starting out on their fitness journey. I love to encourage people to be active and healthy, not necessarily by being a GoodLife member (although that’s preferred of course! J) but just by being active in general. At health fair’s in the summer I know a lot of people don’t want gym memberships because they’re outside and running all summer, which I can totally relate to! It’s cool to meet people who have so many different stories to tell! I’m looking forward to it, if you couldn’t tell! J Then tomorrow night I’m meeting with my financial planner. Basically I’m going to give him my savings, and he’s going to invest it in mutual funds for me so that I can make a decent return on my money long term. I know not many young people tend to really think about what they want when they retire. There’s one thing I can tell you – when I retire, I want to be STRESS FREE. I have had to deal with stress, am dealing with stress and WILL deal with A LOT of stress in my lifetime. When I retire, I want to do what I want, when I want. I want to be able to travel places for however long I want. I want to buy the things I want and not have to worry about money later on. That’s why I’m cracking down and getting my debt under control now, and start saving for retirement at the tender age of 23 (24 in 1 week!). I think it’s a good idea.
So speaking of the future… I’ve got some fun exciting news to share! This is basically what I was debating about yesterday, but today I was still thinking about it ALL day so I knew I wanted this to happen. I’ve been thinking about it for months, but in the last couple weeks have been really researching into it more and more and definitely more seriously, and it’s official. As of next week I will be going back to school part-time for the next two years, enrolled with the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition and I will be taking the Registered Holistic Nutritionist course. Isn’t that CRAZY!? Yesterday I was really debating back and forth the pros and cons of doing this and ultimately I came up with a ton more pros than cons. When I start the program, I will have 2 years to finish all of the courses, and an extra two months to study for and take the final exam. A friend of mine, who actually used to be my boss when I first started working at GoodLife 5 years ago, who is taking the course right now as well and so we’re going to be able to help each other out! Very cool timing J See – we know each other! This is Allison… say hello!
This picture was 5 years ago, 15lbs heavier (me) and
my hair was like 5 shades darker than now.
One of the major deciding factors of deciding to take this course was the financial part. And unfortunately… and this is REALLY upsetting… I had to use the money I saved for my Louboutins to use for my first payment, and I’m officially not saving for those shoes anymore, so that I can save enough to pay each installment of tuition. Le sigh. It’s a sad day. And the shoes are not forgotten… they’re just postponed slightly. Don’t worry Loubies…. You will be in mamma’s arms soon enough!  So yes, my life for the next two years is going to be busy to say the least. I wouldn’t be surprised if I start blogging every other day as opposed to every single day, but please don’t judge. I need to pass this course so I can have RHN behind my name (so cool, right?). Nutrition has always been a strength of mine. In college it was the one program I excelled at, and after college I took the canfitpro Nutrition and Wellness Course, although never took my exams. Now it's time to actually do something and learn more about the subject I'm most passionate about!

Saturday is my last race of the season; I’m running the Toronto Women’s 8km race with Michelle from Push.Pump.Progress. I’m going easy on myself this week because it was kind of concerning when I ran 10km on Sunday and had some ankle pain so I took a few days off and Jenny and I went out today to run an easy 5km. We were both kind of sore in our legs from the WOD we did yesterday so we were just going out to loosen some muscles up. We did exactly 5km in about 32 minutes. Not my fastest pace, but Jenny was having a rough day (I have MANY bad running days, so I could totally understand). The run was hard for her today, we had to walk a couple of times and she was lagging behind me in the last bit so I slowed down to help cheer her on! We pushed through it all though and finished the 5km we set out to do! I hate when I have days that I feel like the run is impossible. It happens more times than not so it’s so not Jenny’s fault. She will rock her next run, I know it! She’s got this fierce competitive spirit in her and I LOVE it! She’s currently trying to beat her boyfriend at running. I’m not sure how she’s tracking it, I think by speed… so that’s really motivating her right now haha. Whatever works, right? I’m going to take the next couple days off of running so I’m not sore on Saturday morning. I think I have better runs when I don’t run for a couple days before the race. Not sure why, but I’ve noticed it so I’m definitely going to be really aware of how I run on Saturday.
I’m making spaghetti out of spaghetti squash tonight. I’m also using my mom’s homemade spaghetti sauce which I’m super excited about – check it out. Mason jar and all. I LOVE it… it reminds me of home and the country and it’s made from fresh veggies from the Mennonites farm and I’m just really excited to use it and eat it.

And this is what everything looked like after it was cooked!

So a few fun things that happened today.
  1. I got my bracelet that I ordered off of Etsy a few weeks ago. Cute!

  1. I got my nails did… including some sparkles! Pretty!

  1. David Chilton (the author of The Wealthy Barber) sent me a direct message on Twitter thanking me for being UBER excited about him being a Dragon on Dragon’s Den tonight. Wicked!

I’d love to know one cool thing that you’ve done today/has happened to you today! Anything out of the ordinary? What do you think of me taking this two year course? I’d LOVE some feedback!
Stay sweet.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Crossfit Beginner Tips & I Need Some Advice!

Good evening Beautiful,

So I slept in this morning. What a perfect start to the day! I had my alarm set a bit later yesterday because I was working from home, and forgot to change it back to reflect the fact that I actually had to go to work today… I still made it out the door in decent time after I gathered everything from the fridge for breakfast/lunch and then couldn’t find my keys so I stole C’s. It took me 40 minutes to get to work this morning resulting in me being a couple of minutes late for work. It normally takes me about 15 minutes to get to work, so it was a bit concerning when I was in the car for 25 minutes and still hadn’t hit the highway. I managed to get to work at about 9:05, but my day was not off to the best start.
This morning was the first morning I was keeping a food journal (again) and weighing my food. For breakfast I had a quarter of a salmon fillet with brussel sprouts and green tea. Delish! The morning went by and then I let Jenny know that she was not working through lunch today, and she was coming up to workout with me! We made our way upstairs and did a WOD, short amount of time but intense at the same time. We did:
100 squats
100 push-ups
100 pull-ups
100 crunches
We did the WOD in 10 sets of 10 reps of each exercise and just kind of rotated through the exercises together and we were both pretty sweaty by the end of the WOD… It was fun! I’m glad we did it, it definitely put me in the right mindset for the rest of my day. While we were working out I told her that she should try a real crossfit class sometime. I was explaining how there is usually a time limit on the WODs but people stick around and cheer on the people who are finishing last. I know a lot of people are intimidated by CrossFit, and it’s really understandable. The Crossfit Box’s (the gyms) are really industrial looking full of weights and barbells and plates, and it would be really scary if you’ve never done it before. So I put together some things you can do if you’re looking to start doing Crossfit to make the beginning a little less scary for you J.
Keep in mind, I’m still pretty “new” to Crossfit as well, so I know these things from experience!
  1. Go with a friend. You can either take a friend who’s also never done Crossfit before, or if you know someone that does Crossfit, go with them! They’ll know how to help you set up your equipment, and will be able to introduce you to regulars in your Crossfit box!
  2. Check out YouTube. There are thousands of videos on YouTube of people doing Crossfit. If there is an exercise that you really don’t know much about, look it up and see how people perform the exercise, it will help you going into the WOD if you have a bit of an idea about what you’re doing.
  3. Check the Crossfit Box’s website the morning you plan on going. This is a good idea for more than 1 reason. The first is that you can see the exercises you will be doing in case you do need to research them before you go, and secondly if you absolutely HATE a certain exercise, you know to not go on that day. If you HATE running, or maybe you just have an injury, you will know if the WOD that day is a lot of running, or if there is no running that day.
Those are the top three things that come to mind for beginners, because this is what I did when I first started. The first Crossfit class I attended was with my friend Jason who is like this super crazy Crossfitter. Luckily for me I know one of the guys that owns the Crossfit Box I go to well so that helped make me a little less scared. The second time I attended I went with my friend Katie who’s also been doing it for a long time. Jason sent me a website after my first class showing me all of the workouts and sent me a link to a website explaining each exercise so I could learn the different exercises and be prepared/do the workouts on my own.
Needless to say though, because of that I tend to do WODs on my own because I find it hard to get to a class during the week. Even though I still enjoy doing them alone, the atmosphere at a Crossfit Box is like none other, so I would highly recommend you check it out!
Tonight for din we’re making a whole chicken in the oven and I’m also going to cook up some squash and some sort of green veggie that I have in the freezer. Another boring meal, I’m sorry! Perhaps tomorrow I will be a creative genius and whip something up in the kitchen. Maybe a soup of some sort, I haven’t done one of those in a while.
I’ve been having somewhat of a dilemma today because there’s something I want to do (I don’t want to tell you yet, once it’s confirmed I will post a big brag about it!) and for some reason I’m super nervous about it. I shouldn’t be, I should be totally excited, which I am sort of as well. I’d be a lot more busy (which may mean bi-weekly posts rather than daily posts, but not necessarily!) and I’d have to really watch my finances even more (not by A LOT, but a bit more than I am now). It’s a big/long commitment, and I know I should do it and will probably end up doing it, but I also had to get rid of my shoe savings and stop saving for the shoes so I could start saving for this. In the long run it will make me better and will take me farther than a pair of shoes will (although I still plan on buying them).
When you are facing a big decision, what do you take into consideration? If it’s something you’re super interested in and know it would be worth it… does that help sway your choice?
Let me know – I need some serious advice!
Stay sweet.

Monday, October 22, 2012

The Doctor Diaries - Part 2.

Good afternoon Beautiful,

What a wonderful day outside. I’m working from home today because I had a doctor’s appointment this afternoon downtown so it made sense not to go up to North York and come back, but to hang out and work from the comfort of my living room until it was time to go. There’s actually a little farmers market happening below me in a park (in the middle of downtown Toronto) that I’m thinking of going over to check out... Wonder if it will be real farmer’s market prices, or if it will be “veggies from downtown Toronto” prices?
Remember him? How could you forget!
Today, I had a doctor’s appointment. Yes, with the same doctor I wrote this post about (it's technically "The Doctor Diaries - Part 1, but I just thought of the name now, so too late... ). My most favourite doctor ever. Today I learned that he’s ran 3 marathons. Say what? Yes, three marathons. If I didn’t have a total crush on him before, I DO NOW! J. When I heard this, I was so impressed and so interested in how fast he runs, I had to look him up on Sport Stats and check him out hahaha. Don’t judge. He doesn’t really dive into the realm of personal information when we’re in our appointment together, but to give you an idea this year he did a 5km in 21 minutes. Sweet lord! I get excited about 28 minutes. He must float through these races. He did a full marathon in 3:49. AH. So fast… Obviously I need to listen to his advice more often seeing that he’s a fellow diabetic on an insulin pump, and a runner. We have so much in common! J I wish he would run a race with me someday. We could be pump wearing diabetic running best friends!
Anyways, I had some blood work done because he needed to see how the glucose in my blood is doing, and I wanted him to check me out (ha) because I’ve been so tired lately… Like, I could have a nap any time, need coffee to stay awake type tired. He checked my thyroid and I have to go back in a month to get it checked out again. I hope nothing too crazy comes from it, but I’d really love if I could get some energy… I don’t think I even know what it feels like to be energized. He also gave me this cool website that I can upload my insulin pump information onto so I don’t have to write it down anymore which is GREAT. I get to upload it once every couple of weeks, and then I can see the patterns and if he wants to he can go see in the patterns as well. Basically that means I need to be verrrry good with my sugars and testing. The goal until my next appointment is to measure and weigh all my food for very accurate carb counting, testing my blood sugar right before I go to bed (I know I’m supposed to, but since I usually eat so late I count that as “bed”.. turns out I’m wrong) and get blood work done in 1 month and then again early March. Go me! So I’m going to be following up weekly with you and letting you know if I’ve been really counting my carbs (via weighing all of my fresh foods on my food scale and seeing the carb count) and testing my blood sugars before bed.
Today I’m deciding not to exercise. Not because I didn’t want to, but because my legs are so stiff, that it hurts me to walk normally. During BodyPump on Saturday we did like 100+ squats and lunges and then mix that with my 10km run yesterday it resulted in concrete legs today. I’ve been stretching them out slowly all day and they’re getting a bit better, finally. So that’s all I have for you in terms of exercise today.
Tomorrow I’m planning on going for a small run, about 5km. I’m kind of nervous because I don’t want  my ankle to hurt. Today it’s still a bit tender but much less sore than after my run yesterday. I totally should have iced it when I got back from my run but at the time I didn’t think about it. I wore my compression socks all day yesterday after my run and my calves are feeling surprisingly fine! Same with my shins. I feel like I was thinking about it a lot during my run and I may have felt like my shins were getting a bit tender but I’m not sure if it really was them getting tender or if it was me thinking about it a lot. Do you ever find that? Where you all of a sudden have some pain somewhere because you just think about it too much? It’s kind of like the headache I had when I went into BodyPump on Saturday. I was thinking about it in the beginning, but the less I thought about it, the less it hurt and it was gone by the end of the class.
We’re 19 days out from my birthday party and I think I’ve been doing ok in terms of looking SHHHHMOOOKIN’ for my party! J Hahaha. I’ve been eating well, sticking to my paleo diet and getting in quite a few workouts. I think on the days that I run during my lunch break, I’m also going to start doing 30-45 minutes of resistance training as well. Two-a-daaaays!! Only a couple of times per week I think. They’re sometimes exhausting, and sometimes they wake me up after a long day. Do you go for the “two-a-day” often? If so, what do you do? Running/weights? Running/yoga? Yoga/weights? The possibilities are endless! I’d love to hear what you do!
Poor C is suffering from a flare up of gout. He gets these every so often and it's super painful for him. He can barely walk, the weight of a bed sheet is too much and causes his severe pain if it's on his foot. He's been trying everything to get rid of it, this morning he had a shot of apple cider vinegar, and then tonight he found a website about curing gout, and so now he's trying baking soda in water every 2 hours. I hope this works. He had me ask my hunky doctor what he should do and of course the doc told him he should go in and see someone about it. They would give him one type of meds that would make the flare up go away pretty quickly, and another med that would lower the uric acid in his body since he's having flare up's pretty frequently. I hope he feels better soon :(.
Tonight for dinner #3 of the 7-day paleo challenge that Michelle @ Push.Pump.Progress is hosting is a half of a salmon fillet, and brussel sprouts with some squash. It’s kind of a boring dinner because I’m not whipping up a new recipe today, but simple dinners are sometimes my favourite. The distinct taste of each individual food is amazing! It took me a while to realize how great and flavourful each food is, the sweetness of the squash, the saltiness of the salmon... YUM! I’m thinking of baking the brussel sprouts. I’ve seen people doing that here and there so I’m going to give it a shot!
For those who have never cooked up salmon before, you should. You can find the benefits here, and also because it’s really easy. You should buy fresh (it’s a bit more expensive but so worth it), and heat up a frying pan with some butter and minced garlic, put the salmon in once it’s hot, and sprinkle some chilli pepper flakes on top along with some either dried herbs or fresh herbs. I cook for about 7 minutes and then flip and sprinkle the same herbs/chilli flakes on top and wait until the bottom half is cooked, then remove from heat and sprinkle with some more fresh herbs! The fillets we get are HUGE so I end up eating about half. Voila!

What did you have for din tonight? Did you workout today, or rest like me?
Stay sweet.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

2 Workouts, 2 Recipes & 1 Great Weekend!

Good afternoon Beautiful,

I hope your weekend is going as great as mine has! Did you get sweaty on both days? At least one? Let me tell you what I did this weekend!
Friday night I basically did nothing. C and I stayed in, I had my martini (remember? J) and then we went to bed pretty early! It was lovely, because I was just pooped from the week. I had plans to go to Hot Yoga with my friend on Saturday morning, so I woke up to go to the gym on Saturday morning. Unfortunately though my friend was feeling under the weather so we decided to possibly go next weekend! However, I had gotten up, gotten ready for the gym, so I still wanted to go to the gym! Honestly, I couldn’t drag my butt to hot yoga, not only because it’s not something I’m super motivated to do, but I hate doing new things by myself so I’m going to wait for my friend to come with me! J Instead, I made my way over to Liberty Village and did a BodyPump class.
Have you ever heard of BodyPump or tried a class? It’s a 1-hour full body barbell class! It’s created by Les Mills which is a group fitness company based out of New Zealand and GoodLife Fitness has the exclusive rights to all Les Mills programming in Canada. I haven’t done a group fitness class in a really long time, and figured it would be a good alternative to hot yoga. I woke up with a pounding headache, so I took some Tylenol and drank a ton of water. When BodyPump started and I was doing the warm-up, my head was pounding with every down and up movement I made. I wasn’t going to leave the class, but it was going to be painful to get through it. Eventually though, I stopped thinking about it and my headache was gone by the end of the class! Fabulous! The class was fun, but the instructor wasn’t one of the better ones that I’ve had in the past… I found myself getting confused with what she wanted us to do, her cueing was off, and she wasn’t doing movements to the beat of the music so it was kind of frustrating, but I got over it quickly. The video below is all about BodyPump!
After the gym (C was working out in the weight room), we went to Best Buy because I’m fairly certain I accidentally threw away my iPod and headphones after my race last weekend. I’m so sad and upset about it. The iPod had some sentimental value to it, it was the best iPod I owned, clipped to my shirt while I was running, and my headphones were the best headphones because they stuck inside my ear, and didn’t fall out while running. I have other iPod’s but I needed new head phones. I managed to find some, and then we went over to Sport Chek because C wanted to grab some workout t-shirts. Of course, when I was there I needed to scout out the women’s section and managed to find a running jacket from Adidas that was on sale and some Adidas compression socks! I’ve wanted compression socks for a while now to see if it helps my calves and shins recover more quickly from my runs. I also picked up some more Nuun tablets to use for post-run goodness!
We got home and I had about an hour to get some writing tasks done and then I had to get ready because we went to the Toronto Marlies game last night! It was fun, a good replacement for NHL games for sure. The Marlies kicked Hamilton’s butt, I had some Caesars, some popcorn and we saw a friend from back in London! After the game, we (Me and C and our friend and his girlfriend) went to Williams Landing for some food and drinks. I stuck to vodka soda (it’s a fairly clean drink, no sugar!) and had a Chicken Cobb salad! It was delish and a perfect way to start off the 7-day Paleo Challenge that Michelle at www.pushpumpprogress.com is hosting!
We got home and were in bed by midnight! Last night was the best sleep I’ve had all week! I woke up this morning, had some chicken to eat, a green tea and some water, showered and got out on this gorgeous day for a run. Today is my “long run” day, so I decided to do anything from 8-10km today. My run started out amazing. The weather is gorgeous today, there’s a breeze which was lovely and there was tons of people out and about being active. My legs are incredibly sore from BodyPump yesterday so my goal wasn’t to try and run it quickly, but to loosen up my legs, and just put in the mileage. The first 5km was slow, my legs were stiff, and I finished it in about 33 minutes. The second half of the run was a bit more painful because my right hip was acting up and my left ankle was getting a bit sore. The end result of my run was 10.23km in 1 hour 7 minutes. It was nice to get out during this great day and burn some calories!
Speaking of running, I have my last race of the year this coming Saturday, so I’ll be doing some running at the beginning of this week, and taking a break from it for a couple days before the race. I’m also hoping to do some more strength training workouts… Just so you know J… and then MAYBE hot yoga on the Sunday morning after my race! My race is the Toronto Women’s 8km Race, and haha, there is a water station of firemen, topless, giving out water… and they give you chocolate at the end of the race too. Isn’t that AMAZING!! Mostly because I LOVE firemen!! :)

So in total this week, I did:
Monday - weights (chest, back, biceps, legs and shoulders)
Tuesday - Ran 5.24km
Wednesday - Full body weights and stretching
Thursday - Off
Friday - Upper body weights
Saturday - BodyPump
Sunday - 10.24km run
So after my run, we took a short drive to Live Food Bar here in Toronto. My friend Tara Noelle is a photographer and shot some photos of me about a year ago and she’s doing a show of them at Live Food Bar, so I thought it’d be fun to go check them out, and to see my photos hanging in a restaurant! Haha. Check it out!

I also ended up grabbing a vegan Cesar Salad made with kale. It wasn’t bad, it didn’t really taste like a cesar salad though, the bacon was made from coconut… weird, but not gross.
Tonight for dinner I’m doing two recipes for you! Here is the first.
Stuffed Mushrooms
1 cup parsley, chopped
½ cup sundried tomatoes
½ cup pine nuts
1 clove of garlic, chopped
1 tsp of lemon juice
¼ cup of olive oil
1 (8oz) package of mushrooms
1. In a food processer (or magic bullet), place parsley and pulse briefly.
2. Add sun dried tomatoes, pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice and salt then pulse until almost smooth.
3. Drizzle in olive oil and pulse again briefly to incorporate.
4. Remove stems from mushrooms and stuff with the pesto.
5. Bake at 350F for about 30-45 minutes.

And then there was the chicken.

Baked Mustard Lime Chicken
1 pound of skinless boneless chicken breast
½ cup fresh lime juice
½ cup of cilantro, chopped
¼ cup Dijon mustard
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp chilli powder
½ tsp sea salt
½ tsp pepper
1. Combine lime juice, cilantro, mustard, olive oil, chilli, salt and pepper in a food processer (or magic bullet).
2. Pulse until ingredients are well combined.
3. Rinse chicken breasts, pat dry and place in a 7x11 baking dish.
4. Pour marinade over chicken, cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes, up to 6 hours.
5. Bake at 350F for 18-20 minutes uncovered, or until an instant read thermometer reads 165degrees.
6. Serve with extra sauce spooned over top.

I love how delicious they look! They're both completely paleo as to go along with Michelle's 7-day Paleo Challenge which I told you about previously! Yay me! I'll also be having steamed broccoli with it, but it's not cool enough to take a photo of... :) For the stuffed mushrooms, I would probably only use about half the amount of sundried tomatoes because they were pretty overpowering. BUT still good! :)
If you haven’t seen my tweets, today my first post for my weekly column at Lifestyle & Strength went up – click here to head over and check it out! I’d love your opinion! I’ll be going up weekly, so stay tuned!
What did you do this weekend? And what are your fitness goals for the week?
Stay sweet.

Friday, October 19, 2012

My "Big Mess" Story

Good evening Beautiful,

HAPPY FRIDAY! It’s finally Friday – it couldn’t have come any slower if it tried!
As you all know, this week has been a bit intense for me… not really because anything intense happened, more because I was on the edge of burn out and needed a lot of rest, which in turn resulted less exercise and I ate some crap. The good news is that things like this happen, and it’s how you handle it that really matters. So if you didn’t guess it already, tonight’s post will focus on the big, bad burnout.
According to Google, burnout is defined as Physical or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress. I would say this is a perfect definition. Wikipedia also added that it includes diminished interest and has categorized burn out into 12 steps:
  1. The compulsion to prove oneself
  2. Working harder
  3. Neglecting their needs
  4. Displacement of conflicts
  5. Revision of Values
  6. Denial of emerging problems
  7. Withdrawl
  8. Obvious behavioral changes
  9. Depersonalization
  10. Inner emptiness
  11. Depression
  12. Burnout symdrome
Ok, so I wasn’t close to burnout, but I’ve had an exhausting week. Anyways, if you think you’re close to burn out, what can you do to cope? The most effective thing to do is rest, take a sick day and just rest, rest your body, rest your mind, and just do nothing. If you think it’s more serious than a day off of work, ask to have some of your work distributed to some other people and slowly rebuild your endurance to work. If you want to read more on burn out, you can click here to be taken directly to the Wikipedia page.
This morning was no better than yesterday. Last night I had to set my alarm for a 2:30am wakeup call so I could test my blood sugar to make sure my insulin levels are correct. Of course, I couldn’t get back to sleep after that, so I woke up groggy again today. I woke up early so I could go get blood work done for my doctor’s appointment on Monday with my most favourite doctor ever (click here to see him!). Do you know how wildly inconvenient it is to not have a credit card? Basically this morning I parked my car at the hospital, in a little parking lot with no people running it. Well frig, as soon as I was in the hospital I realized “Hmm, how am I going to get out of here with no credit card to pay for parking?”…. so by this point I still had to get the blood work done, so I did that, and made my way to the information desk. I’m sure the woman thought I was nuts for asking how I could pay for parking with no credit card. Well, she directed me some place that I couldn’t find, so if she didn’t already think I was crazy, I had to go back and get physically shown how to go where I needed to go, basically the opposite side of the hospital from where I parked.
I got to the parking office, and asked the guy behind the desk if I could pay for parking without a credit card. He seemed taken back that I didn’t have a credit card, and directed me in the direction of the bank. So I had to leave, walk to the bank, take out money and come back. He taught me to pay for parking with money (he used a machine, if I had known I just needed to do that, I’m sure I could have figured it out for myself, but thank you anyways sir) and I had to walk back to the hospital and when I walked in, decided to grab a coffee.
When I get coffee I usually pour it myself because I leave a lot of room for cream (the only thing I put diary in is my coffee), or if I’m at Starbucks and they give me too much I can pour some into the trash. This place didn’t leave me enough room nor did they have a trash bin. I filled up my coffee to my liking and proceeded to put a lid on it… which then made the coffee overflow everywhere. Not a little drop… everywhere. Anytime I moved the coffee, more spilled. I tried to open the lid, it overflowed through the little hole in the top. I made a HUGE mess. Unfortunately the women who served me was scary and not very approachable, and they also didn’t have napkins. Soooo, lady who was working at the coffee place I was at today (I don’t remember the name!) I’m very sorry I left a mess for you…. Please put napkins out in preparation for my next visit on Monday. Thanks… and sorry again.
So then I left the hospital (quickly, before anyone noticed I was the one that made the mess) and left the hospital to go back home! We actually even made it to work on time today which was nice. I devoured my breakfast though; fasting for 13 hours isn’t fun. I like food. So if I haven’t already mentioned this, I was super tired today (ha), but 1:15 came around and I decided to go workout to see if that helped me wake up. I did just upper body today, a light workout but I figured it was better than nothing. I won’t even bore you with the details because it was basically the same thing I’d done my last two workouts prior.
This week has really SUCKED in terms of running. I haven’t ran since like, Monday I think. I can’t even remember. No, it must have been Tuesday because I took Monday off of running. Tomorrow I have plans to go to hot yoga with my friend Marina, and we’re going to have lunch after. Then on Sunday I’m planning on doing a 10km run! Well, that’s the plan.
What do you have planned for the weekend? Any fitness fun? This is how I’m starting my weekend….
If you couldn't tell, this is a chocolate raspberry martini..!

… I love my “mostly” healthy life J. I think this martini is well deserved.
Stay sweet.

PS - Click here to see if you won the Gluten Free Goodies Giveaway!