when you begin a new adventure, the novelty of everything is intoxicating. it’s exciting to have an unfamiliar feeling, whether it’s the pride of crossing your first finish line or the simple joy of pulling that perfect pie out of the oven on your fifth try.
i started this blog because i wanted a tangible reminder of why i am on this journey to become my best self — something to remind me how exhilarating that feeling of accomplishment is when i take a step closer to finding that a healthy and balanced life.
now, almost two years later, i’ve graduated school, landed a great writing job, but most importantly, i wake up every day and don’t hesitate about going to the gym or eating a healthy lunch. i don’t hesitate over every single meal choice (at least not every day). the auto-reminder that i’m trying to be healthy and trying to reach a goal of feeling great every day has transitioned from an active thought to a true habit, semi-conscious in the back of my mind.
i imagine anyone who is able to find balance in their life would say it is a full-time job to maintain that happiness, but now it no longer feels like work.
so, with that, i am sad to say this is the close of cupcakes and carrot sticks. i will never end the journey of trying to maintain a healthy and balanced life or lose the desire to share the tricks i pick up along the way — as i will never love anything quite as much as writing about healthy eating and living. But after two years of sharing my excitement and learnings here, it’s time for me to seek out new challenges to add to my life.
because, like i already said, nothing is as nonintoxicating joyful as new beginnings, especially when you’re not running from something, but just looking to add more to a life you’re already delighted with.
Posted in loving it all, loving the balance | Leave a Comment »
coffee is a godsend on sluggish mornings, but your daily cup of joe may be an even better perk-up than you think.
a new study from harvard revealed that women who drink two or more cups of coffee a day are less likely to get depressed.
while scientists aren’t sure exactly why it might have this effect, they do know that decaffeinated coffee didn’t have the same effect.
this means you can add happiness to the list of excuses to brew a pot every morning, a list which already includes high antioxidant benefits and lower risk for alzheimer’s disease, parkinson’s disease and cardiovascular diseases.
be sure to drink your morning brew black, otherwise the calories in sugar and creamer can cancel out the perks of your perk-up.
Posted in loving it all | Tagged caffeine lowers depression, coffee and depression, coffee lowers depression, health benefits of coffee | Leave a Comment »
a dessert that’s delicious and good for you? what could be better.
how about five minute preparation time, and no baking?
these almond butter chews are incredibly easy to make, and aren’t just low in calories—they actually benefit your health.
almond butter is good for your heart, controls blood sugar and is rich in antioxidants. plus, nuts are high in protein, fiber, and monounsaturated fats, which actually helps you stay fuller longer and avoid weight gain.
these little balls of joy come from oh she glows, and are vegan and easily adaptable to a gluten-free diet.
head to the kitchen, cause this will probably be the most five minutes has rewarded you all day.
for almond butter chews, you’ll need:
- 1/4 c. chunky all-natural almond butter
- 3 tbsp. organic brown rice syrup
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 c. puffed rice cereal
- 1 tbsp. cacao nibs or chopped chocolate
- line a plate with parchment paper. in a medium microwave safe bowl, stir together almond butter, brown rice syrup and vanilla. microwave on high for 35-45 seconds. stir; immediately add cereal and cacao nibs. stir until fully mixed.
- wet hands thoroughly and shape the mixture into golf ball-sized spheres. press mixture together firmly. place the balls onto plate and freeze for five minutes. store in an airtight container.
per serving: 112 calories, 6g fat, 14g carbs, 9g sugar, 2g protein
Posted in baking, loving the food | Tagged almond butter chews, almond butter dessert recipe, almond butter recipe, easy dessert recipe, healthy dessert, healthy dessert recipe, no bake dessert, oh she glows, vegan dessert | Leave a Comment »
what do madonna, olivia wilde, courtney cox and nicole richie all have in common? they all owe their rockin’ bods to the same trainer: tracy anderson.
celebrities have long touted anderson’s ability to work magic on their bodies. she sculpted madonna’s famous arms, “redesigned” gwyneth paltrows’ behind, and now can also claim fame to cox’s svelte shape.
the cougar town actress, who appears on the new cover of new beauty, revealed to the magazine that she uses the tracy anderson method four times a week to keep her 47-year-old body looking decades younger.
the good news? anderson’s workouts come on an endless number of dvds so you can get a celebrity body in your own home.
the bad news: these wonder workouts aren’t realistic for us average janes (her fitness plan involves three-hour workouts a day!) and may not be as healthy as you’d hope (one user almost passed out from the regime and found out she was only consuming 700 calories a day by following the plan!).
don’t run back to the couch yet though. while anderson’s get-fit plan may not be the best option for most, you can adapt the foundation of her regime to your own workout plan to get a toned torso.
anderson’s fat-melting magic lies in:
- changing up workouts instead of sticking to one routine, which keeps your body guessing and your muscles working.
- looking for small ways to burn extra calories, such as heating up a workout room.
- pilates-inspired moves, which tone your core and leave you with lean muscles.
- customizing workouts to your body type so you’re spending time on the parts of you body that need them most.
- cooking everything grilled, steamed or poached, and limiting starches, fat and red meat.
also check out these custom-designed moves from tracy anderson on self.com to get gwyneth’s sexy arms and abs.
with these tricks and moves, you won’t need anderson at your side to get a body worthy of the paparazzi.
Posted in random | Tagged courtney cox, courtney cox body, courtney cox workout, gwyneth paltrow, gwyneth paltrow abs, gwyneth paltrow body, gwyneth paltrow self, gwyneth paltrow workout, tips from tracy anderson diet, tracy anderson, tracy anderson diet, tracy anderson dvd, tracy anderson workout | 1 Comment »
there is no better snack than one that feels like an indulgence but is actually healthy.
my favorite is pita and hummus — which just so happens to also be a winning combination of carbs and protein.
the only thing that can make such an irresistible snack better? why, homemade pita of course.
i had the most amazing fresh pita from a farmer’s market near my parents house in roswell, georgia this summer. of course, since tasting such deliciousness, my favorite snack has had a little less umph with store-bought ingredients.
thankfully, i came across this homemade pita recipe on from me to you. while the fresh loaf recipe requires a little bit of commitment, if mine will turn out like from me to you’s mouth-watering photographs (see below), i’m ready to devote the time and reap eat the benefits.
for fresh loaf’s pita, you’ll need:
- 3 cups flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoons honey
- 1 packet of yeast
- 1 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- if you are using active dry yeast, follow the instructions on the packet to active it (see the note on yeast above). otherwise, mix the yeast in with the flour, salt, and sugar. add the olive oil and 1 1/4 cup water and stir together with a wooden spoon. the ingredients should mix together to form a ball. if some of the flour will not stick to the ball, add more water (about 1/4 cup).
- place the ball on a clean work surface work surface (such as a cutting board or countertop) and knead the dough for approximately 10 minutes. you can also use an electric mixer at low speed for 10 minutes. make sure to knead thoroughly to ensure the dough will be stretchy and rise well in the oven.
- once dough is sufficiently kneaded, form into a ball and place it in a bowl that has been lightly coated with oil (either as a spray or spread around with your fingers). roll the ball of dough around in the bowl so that it has a light coat of oil on all sides. cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel and set aside to rise until it has doubled in size, approximately 90 minutes.
- once it has risen, punch the dough down to release some of the trapped gases and divide it into 8 pieces.
- roll each piece into a ball, cover the balls with a damp kitchen towel, and let them rest for 20 minutes.
- while the dough is resting, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. if you have a baking stone, put it in the oven to preheat as well. if you do not have a baking stone, turn a cookie sheet upside down and place it on the middle rack of the oven while you are preheating the oven. this will be the surface on which you bake your pitas.
- after the dough has relaxed for 20 minutes, spread a light coating of flour on a work surface and place one of the balls of dough there. sprinkle a little bit of flour on top of the dough and use a rolling pin or your hands to stretch and flatten the dough. you should be able to roll it out to between 1/8 and 1/4 inch thick. if the dough does not stretch sufficiently you can cover it with the damp towel and let it rest 5 to 10 minutes before trying again.
- with a spray bottle, lightly mist your baking surface in the oven let it sit with the oven door shut for 30 seconds.
- open the oven and place as many pitas as you can fit on the hot baking surface. they should be baked through and puffy after 3 minutes. if you want your pitas to be crispy and brown you can bake them for an additional 3 to 5 minutes.
servings: 8 pitas
per serving: 182 calories, 35 g carbs. 3.5 g fiber, 1.5 g sugar, 6 g protein
Posted in baking | Tagged easy snack recipe, fresh loaf pita recipe, from me to you pita, healthy pita recipe, healthy snack recipe, healthy snacks, homemade pita, hummus and pita | Leave a Comment »
there’s nothing better than throwing all the leftover food from your fridge together into a delicious meal.
this asparagus avocado wrap is incredibly easy to make before work and stays well in the fridge until lunch.
asparagus will give you a vitamin k boost, as well as a good amount of protein, and avocados are high in fiber and the good kind of fat our bodies need.
there are a couple other asparagus avocado wrap recipes out there which involve rice, yogurt and other ingredients, but the best part about this easy recipe is that you can alter it to what you already have in your fridge. a great addition to my recipe below would be cilantro, if you have some lying around.
for the asparagus avocado wrap, you’ll need:
- 10 stalks asparagus, ends cut and stalks chopped in half
- 1/2 avocado, pitted and peeled
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup fat-free feta
- 1/8 cup onion, chopped
- 1 whole wheat tortilla wrap
- in a medium saucepan over high heat, bring 2 inches water to a boil. place the asparagus in a steamer basket, cover, and steam until just tender (6-8 minutes). remove the asparagus and immediately rinse in cold water to stop the cooking. drain thoroughly.
in a small bowl, mash the avocado, lime juice, and garlic into a coarse puree.
heat a dry large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. heat the tortilla in the hot pan until softened, about 20 seconds per side.
lay the tortillas flat on a clean work surface. spread the avocado mixture on half the tortilla. top with onions, feta and asparagus.
either simply fold over, or fold in both sides and the bottom of each tortilla up over the filling, then roll to close. if made in advance, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 1 hour. return to room temperature before serving.
- cut in half and serve.
per serving: 364 calories, 37 carbs, 18g fat, 16g protein
Posted in cooking, loving the food | Tagged avocado asparagus wrap, easy vegetable wrap recipe, easy vegetarian recipe, easy wrap recipe, healthy easy lunch recipe, healthy vegetarian recipe, healthy wrap recipe, vegetarian lunch recipe | Leave a Comment »
stopping to talk over the water cooler may add years to your life, new research from tel aviv university in isreal shows.
the study tracked working adults for 20 years and found that those who believed they had a good social support system at work actually lived longer.
you may think they’re just your coworkers, but most people spend more time with people at the office than their family during the week, so why not upgrade them to being your friend?
additionally, overworked women were 70 percent more likely to die than those who did not feel overwhelmed by their tasks and workflow.
next time you take a coffee break — and from that startling statistic above, a lot of women need a break — invite an office mate to tag along!
Posted in random | Tagged adding years to your life, benefit of friends, benefit of friends at work, coworkers, friends at work lengthen life, getting along with coworkers, living longer, living longer with friends at work, study from tel aviv university | Leave a Comment »