If You Could Be Any Candy…

…what would you be??

I got asked this question a few weeks ago and I had to sit and think of my answer for a few minutes. Do you know how many types of candy are out there?? HA!

The question was asked to me in regards to what my personality is like. While my favorite candy is Reese’s (in any form), I knew it didn’t describe me well.

After careful consideration for a few minutes, I went with Almond Joy.

Personally, I don’t have these often. I like them, but they aren’t my favorite, so I actually tend to forget about them at times.

I am an almond joy because if you don’t know what is on the inside yet, all you see is an average chocolate bar/candy. But once you take a bite, you get a little bit of sweet (coconut), and a little bit of nutty (from the almonds)!

For many people, once they get to know me more, I open up more and you will see my nutty/goofy side as well. I’m no class clown, but I have my goofy quirks and I can be weird. 🙂

QUESTION FOR YOU!

If YOU could be any candy, what would you be??

Please comment below, or if you clicked on this through Facebook, comment on there if you wish. I would LOVE to hear your answers and get to know people more. Plus, I think it’s fun to answer about your own personality!

😀

Haircut, Weekend Happenings, + Eats

Hello all!

My apologies for only one post last week. U-Verse (AT&T) was out so I couldn’t do anything online!

I figured I’d start this week with a quick little weekend recap, even though the weekend isn’t quite done yet.

Saturday morning started with the usual coffee while I watched the recent episode of The Alienist. This is a new show that started the other week on TNT and it is amazing! It is set in the 19th century (right up my alley), and is all about solving a crime/mystery. If you are looking for a new show, I highly recommend it!

I had a birthday cake protein bar for breakfast while finishing watching the episode, and I ate a banana with almond butter before I headed out for my haircut at 10am.

Before and after!

I was SO overdue for a haircut it wasn’t even funny! I just got it trimmed and had the lady add some long layers. It immediately felt 10x better! It may not be a huge difference to most, but it is to me and I love it!

For lunch I had leftover steak my dad grilled on top of some greens + a taste of turkey sausage he grilled with the steak as well.

In between some blogging and reading, I decided to try my hand at some protein donuts! I made some a few years ago, and I wasn’t crazy over the recipe I went by.

These chocolate protein donuts turned out great! Be on the lookout for this recipe soon!

For the rest of the afternoon, I did some more blogging, put up laundry, and got some things done around the house.

For dinner, mom and dad suggested Olive Garden, so I went straight for their minestrone soup…my favorite soup of theirs! I had half a breadstick with it too. It hit the spot!

The rest of the evening was spent relaxing and before bed I got into the bag of valentine Reese’s I bought myself. 😀

Reese’s are my absolute FAVORITE candy, and these little hearts did not disappoint, like all their others! I have already found the Easter eggs they put out…and let me tell you, I don’t know what it is about those, but they are the best out of them all!

Sunday morning I got up and did some light stretching, and enjoyed my morning coffee while catching up on some reading and other blogs. I had another protein bar for breakfast like I did Saturday morning.

I’m not very stylish, but on days where I don’t have to wear my workout clothes, I try to put more effort into my outfit. Sunday I wore my jeans (from Walmart), a light pink lacy top (from JCPenny), and a lightweight black cardigan on top (from old navy). As you can tell I am a skilled model…haha, not! Awkward poses are my thing…

I was excited to wear my new necklace I picked up after my haircut on Saturday. The salon I went to had a lady selling some clothes and jewelry and this necklace caught my eye. I’m not a huge jewelry wearer, but I do enjoy longer necklaces, bracelets, and rings.

After church, Granny and I headed out to lunch at Dale’s Southern Grill over in Hoover. I enjoyed their blackened tilapia with a side of squash and zucchini.

I also had a side of their carrot soufflé, which is so delicious, as my dessert.

When I got back home I had plans on meal prepping some veggies that I needed to cook before going bad.

I baked/roasted cauliflower and carrots at 400 for 30 minutes, and baked a spaghetti squash at 400 for 45 minutes.

I love spaghetti squash because you can pair it with most things: ground beef/turkey, chicken, etc. I plan on putting some pasta sauce on it later this week and adding some chicken!

As soon as those were done cooking, I wanted to get a low key jog in on the treadmill to move around a little, since it was cold, rainy, and dreary outside.

I ran 2 miles on the treadmill while watching an episode of Supernatural, and walked half a mile to cool down. Nothing fancy, but just what I needed. My lower back was still sore from some deadlifts I did the other day at the gym.

Post run was one of these chocolate protein donuts I made, with a little peanut butter on top. (I’m telling you, I’m a sucker for chocolate + peanut butter)

I made some fresh coffee for dad and I, and finished up with this post and plan to do some other work/reading I wanted to get to today.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 Some good and positive changes are happening in my life, and I have been happier now than I have been in quite some time. Sometimes it takes hardships in life to realize what you are missing in life…as well as what ( or who) you need to get out of your life!!

I hope you all have a wonderful week, and be looking for a great post on Wednesday that will share more of my personal story! 🙂

How to Clean Your Makeup Brushes

Happy Monday to you all!

I can’t believe we are in the end of January. February starts this week!! That just means it’s closer to spring, am I right?

So, yesterday I finally put my foot down to wash my makeup brushes…because, believe it or not, I’ve never cleaned my makeup brushes! Any of the ones I’ve owned over the years I have never cleaned…and I know that is BAD for my skin. I don’t wear a ton of makeup, and I don’t have a lot of brushes like some girls do, but I knew it was time to do it!

I’m so embarrassed by my foundation brush, you guys!!

There are many things out there on how you should clean your makeup brushes, but I just wanted something simple, easy, and not many steps involved. Who wants to use up too much time just to clean your makeup brushes?

I have one brush just for my foundation, and one brush for my powder, so I knew once I got going it wouldn’t take me too long!

Here’s what you’ll need:

-Your brushes

-small plate or bowl

-Warm water

-dish soap

Step One: mix water and dish soap on your plate or bowl

Step Two: Swirl brush around in liquid mixture until clean (water will turn the color of your makeup, and you may need to do this step a few times depending on your brush)

I had to repeat this second step 4-5 times with my foundation brush!!

Step 3: Rinse out thoroughly under sink + lay out to dry.

Easy Peasy! With one of my two brushes only used for powder, it was easy to clean and not much to come off, but the foundation brush on the other hand… I will have to keep this a regular habit. You are supposed to clean your makeup brushes at least Once every couple of weeks (I’ve heard) so I will have to stay on top of this!

It’s good for your brushes and good for your skin!! 😀

10 Thing You May Not Know About Me

Happy Friday guys!

Today’s post I am sharing 10 facts you may (or may not) have known about me.

1.Before majoring in Exercise Science, I was an art major (photography + graphic design)

(I still love taking pictures!)

2.Sunrises vs Sunsets? Sunrises!

3.I love most crime shows + at one point seriously thought about going into forensics. 

4.My little dog, Jack, is my sweet baby 

5.I enjoy going to the shooting range with my dad.

6.Christmas was my favorite holiday as a girl 

(Halloween + Thanksgiving + Christmas…top 3 in order)

7.My favorite type of food is Mexican, with Chinese as a close second.

8.My current favorite movie is Anchorman…because I only saw it for the first time a few weeks ago! 

9.I love Succelents

10. No matter where life takes me, I always know God has a plan for my life and loves me unconditionally! 

Healthier Takeout Pizza?

Pizza is one of those popular foods, that just about everybody loves. At a young age, we see pizza serves in schools, at classroom parties, birthday parties, sleepovers, trips, etc. It is just one of those staple foods that is such a good go-to and is usually delicious.

Even as I am older, I still love me some pizza, but I don’t always feel like eating the classic pepperoni + cheese, Hawaiian, or meat lovers.

Some days I am craving pizza, but just want a little bit healthier version of it, and I don’t always want a frozen pizza, either.

Never fear, though! Pizza places are offering more and more options where you can make your pizza just a little bit healthier.

The pizza above is from Pizza Hut, and is thin crust, no cheese, lighter sauce, spinach, onions, and pineapple. I made my own and customized it to how I wanted it.

When a pizza can be that customized, you know the pizza company wants to accommodate what you need/want. Some people are lactose intolerant, and can’t do cheese. I can’t do a lot of it, so I opted for none.

You can pick and choose what you want as your toppings. Don’t like pineapple? No problem! Want only a certain meat and one veggie? Or maybe regular crust? Go for it!

Over the weekend when pizza was ordered at my parents, they got a regular pizza meat lovers and I ordered my (above) pizza. You bet I enjoyed a slice of that too, along with 2 slices of my own…and maybe half a cheese stick! (Balance, am I right?)

So don’t feel like you should take out pizza all together if you are on a healthy lifestyle journey, because you can definitely keep it involved!

QUESTIONS FOR YOU:

-what’s your all time favorite pizza?

-if you were to customize a healthier pizza, how would you make it? 

3 Reasons Why Diets Don’t Work

We are not even one week into 2018 and I am already so sick + tired of seeing all of these diet + weight loss ads being advertised.

Yes, a lot of people have goals at the first of the year to lose weight, tone up, or just be healthier; but with all of these companies promising you quick weight loss if you eat this, count this, or buy their product, it’s no wonder people get confused and/or fall off the bandwagon shortly into the year.

(Strawberry smoothie from Neighborhood Brew, off Valleydale)

I’ve fallen into diet traps before in my lifetime, researching different approaches, eliminating certain foods, and of course, calorie counting. All of these got me in bad places and was NOT good for my health, both physically and mentally.

Our bodies are incredible machines. I mean, God made us, how could they not be?

Food is fuel to our bodies. We need it not only for energy, but for our bodies even to be able to function. We must feed our organs too! Food is also meant to be enjoyed.

(Buffalo Wild Wings: Wings + bacon cheese fries)

It is important we have a balance of exercise, feeding our bodies nutritious food, but also feeding our bodies food for pleasure. It can confuse our minds if we fall into all of these diet traps. I am practicing every day to follow more of this healthy balanced, intuitive eating lifestyle, and each day with each step forward, I am finding it more freeing

(night time cereal combo of Vanilla Chex + Fruit Loops)

So, why do diets NOT work?

I’m here to give you 3 reasons why.

1.Diets essentially slow down the process of losing weight. 

But, wait! Aren’t diets supposed to help us lose weight faster? NO. When we put our bodies through any kind of “diet”, it is actually a stressor to (and on) our bodies. Our bodies tend to fight against us when we are going through something like this. That should be our first clue! Extreme dieting, eliminating food groups, and being so restrictive is not what our bodies were made to do or be put through. Dieting just causes our stress hormones (adrenaline + cortisol) to increase.

So, all this time you were thinking going on a diet would relieve some stress? Think again.

(Salad I put together with leftover chicken tenders + orange pieces)

2.They usually don’t work long term/Aren’t always sustainable.

If someone goes on a diet to lose “X” amount of pounds, and they had to eliminate a food group, be restrictive, sacrifice going out with friends + family, and maybe even had a to take a certain company’s product, what happens when this person reaches their goals?

Are they going to continue to miss out on enjoying dinner out with family + friends? Are they willing to continue to pay for the product or eliminate a certain food group the rest of their life?

Realistically, it doesn’t always work.

In many cases, people end up gaining weight back after reaching their goal and getting off the diet, but their happiness may be through the roof if they are able to enjoy things they missed out on before.

Of course, I say everything in moderation, but we must also consider our happiness. Want to enjoy a date night with your significant other and enjoy a good meal + dessert? Go for it!

A lot of this falls under intuitive eating, which I will talk more abut in future posts. All in all, think about going through a particular “diet” for the rest of your life. I’m sorry, but I don’t want that for my life!

(Panera Bread: Side salad, Butternut squash soup, and baguette)

3.Diets usually are NO FUN!

Let’s be real…when has a “diet” ever been rainbows + unicorns? NEVER. There may be some excitement in the beginning, because, hey…I have goals and I want to reach them…but soon that dies off when you are craving a piece of bread, a glass of milk, or even a piece of chocolate. Nine times out of ten, when you eliminate something and tell yourself you aren’t allowed to have it, the cravings for that will only get stronger and stronger. So much strong, that you just might give in, ruin your “diet”, you get down + frustrated with yourself, and you feel you have to start over.

Who wants to live like that?

I used to think I ruined things if I gave in to eating something that I truly wanted. I no longer want to be like that. It DID stress me out, I got frustrated with myself, and it’s not worth it. If you want a food, it should be enjoyed!!

Having a balanced lifestyle of both healthy + nutritious foods, and those foods that give us pleasure, is what it’s about. I am 4 year out from 30 (oh lawd) and I am at the point where I want to give my body the nutritious food it needs to function, but also enjoy foods I love, try new things, and NOT be stressed about it.

(Ice cream of all kinds is good. I have always enjoyed Arctic Zero for a healthier option)

So before you sign up for this “diet” or buy this product, think twice about long term and your happiness and health.

If you need someone to guide you through it, or need someone to help reach your goals without going on a diet, please contact me! I am starting this year as a health coach and I want to help you get where you want to be without falling for these gimmicks and false hopes.

Whether it is for personal training or health coaching, you can always email me at toloveandliveblog@gmail.com.

My 2018 Goals + How to Make Yours Successful in the New Year

Hello my friends and welcome back to a new post after all the Christmas happening!

I hope you all had a wonderful time with family and friends and enjoyed the Christmas season with everyone.

Now that we have experienced Christmas and it is the end of December, we start to look upon a new year and what we want to accomplish.

To me, a new year is full of excitement, new beginning, a refreshed start, and a chance to set goals for yourself.

For many people, though, their New Year’s goals (I don’t like the word resolution) may not last long throughout the year if they don’t set it the right (and healthy) way.

You must be SMART about making your goals in 2018.

What do I mean by SMART? Having SMART goals means setting yourself up for success throughout the whole year.

SMART Goal is this:

S: specific

M: measurable

A: attainable

R: realistic

T: time-bound

Most people just write down their New Year’s goals on a piece of paper in list form, and while there is nothing wrong with that, a way you can be sure you stick to + are successful with those goals, is to go through each one and answer each of these questions for each letter:

S-specific: Who is Involved? What is it that I want to accomplish? Establish a time frame + pick a location. You’re “why”–purpose or benefits.

M-measurable: How much? How long/many? How will I know I have accomplished it?

A-attainable:  plan your steps for this goal wisely and come up with a time frame that will allow you to carry out those steps. (How can I plan my steps?)

R-realistic: Does my goal represent an objective toward which I am willing and able to work for?

T-time bound: When? (In 6 weeks I want to…, By June I want to…..)

If you take each of your goals and follow these SMART guidelines, you are setting yourself up for success in 2018.

An example of this can be a big goal or a small goal:

Say you want to start a health + fitness journey in 2018. Using SMART:

Specific: I want to start eating smaller portions and start working out 3 days a week at my local gym.

Measurable: In 4 weeks I want to be consistent with walking 2-3 mornings before work, and by 3 months bump up to 4 mornings.

Attainable: I will start with small changes in my eating and a couple days a week at the gym. My next step is to bump up my days at the gym and start eating out less. After that, I will try a group class and try new healthy recipes in the kitchen.

Realistic: It is most important to me to be healthy so I can chase my kids around and be around when they get older. Along the way I can lose weight and become stronger and feel better each day.

Time bound: When can I achieve this? By the end of the year I want to be on continuous journey to staying healthy and have it come naturally.

As you can see above, following these guidelines for a goal such as this can help one to be successful even after 2018 is done.

                         My 2018 goals look something like this:

-Read 1 book each month

-Continue to grow my blog

-Become a health coach + help others

-Gain more personal training clients

-Train for another half marathon with Matt

-Be more spontaneous! (I plan things too often)

-Be more present

-Write an ebook (for you guys!)

-Enjoy life, love every moment + everyone in it!

Lessons From a Christmas Tree

Merry Christmas Eve Eve everybody!

It’s hard to believe it’s finally here. This year has seriously gone by fast.

I hope you all have wonderful plans for this weekend, will be able to be around friends and family, and to celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ!

I came across this thing about lessons we can learn from a Christmas tree.

I wanted to share it with you guys today because I thought it was not only cute, but had some great little tips!

Lessons From a Christmas Tree

1.Be a Light in the Darkness.

2.We all Fall Over Sometimes. 

Psalm 145:14-16

3.You can never wear to much glitter.

Afraid or doubting your worth and what you can or want to do? You are SO worthy and loved by a God who created you to do outstanding things. Never doubt that. Put on that glitter! 

4.Bring Joy to Others 

5.Sparkle + Twinkle as Often as Possible

You never know when your sparkle can inspire or touch someone else. When you have God inside of you, you will not fail!

6.It’s OK to be a Little Tilted.

When I came across these on Pinterest, I had to kick off the Christmas weekend with this for you guys. Sparkle + shine this Christmas, give joy, be a light, and be true to who you are, even we are a little tilted or weird!

😀

Merry Christmas!