Its been a couple days since my last post and honestly its because I couldn't decide if I want to post this or not. A lot of people have noticed and I wasn't sure if I had to address it. I don't think I owe anyone an explanation, but I figured I would.
Over the last 2 months, I have gained weight. It is not something I'm ashamed of or concerned about. I realized one day that I was so obsessed with healthy living that I wasn't being fair to my body. I was limiting food extremely and skipping meals. I was so unhappy. I have always struggled with my body image. I felt that I had to look like all the other girls to be happy. I gained weight and I am happy. I decided I will lose some of the weight I've gained, but if I do I want to do it the right way.
This topic is something that is really hard for me. Self-love has been a difficult journey. Through middle school and high school, I struggled a lot with wanting to be bone skinny. It simply isn't me. Even when I was as skinny as I dreamed... I was so unhappy. I was unhealthy, and I killed my body in the process.
When I lost weight, I was underweight. I was sick, I was unhappy and confused. I truly believe I was more in love with the illusion of being skinny rather than the action. It finally hit me that I didn't want to fit the mold society tells you to be. The second I changed my attitude and my thoughts. I decided that I will be whoever I want. I will wear whatever size I need to, and I will embrace it.
I can't wait to share my journey of self-love and updates on my health.
Thank you for reading,
One Last Thing: Don't be afraid to make your own decisions, do what makes you happy and stop falling into the mold.
Growing up meat was such an important factor in my eating diet. Coming from a Hispanic background meat is largely used in everyday diets. Getting certified as a nutritionist helped me learn a lot about different diets and macros. Over the past year, I have lost weight and gained some. I find that forcing myself into a diet never works. I am just trying to find what works best for me. I decided to slowly transition over to Veganism for a month. Okay, okay. I know what you are thinking. Why Vegan? Why only a month? Are you going to stay a vegan?
I felt the need to transition into a healthier lifestyle. I love my body and I don't mind the couple pounds I gained during weight training. I just want to feel comfortable with myself, and know what I am eating is good for me. To start off this was no easy. I do not drink milk, so that helped. I am not a huge meat eater compared to my family, so that helped. I simply wanted to find a way to incorporate healthy foods into my diet. (the fun way) Although there is certainly indulgences that are just so hard to give up.
Why only a month?
I don't know if I could full on be a vegan. At least not right now.
THE BASICS: Support System / Groceries
To start this journey, I had to have the right things in my fridge. Also, make sure I don't have that many temptations in my pantry. Luckily parents decided to this alongside me. Making this whole process way easier. I was fortunate to have a bit of a support system. If you don't have someone in your family, look for a friend. Even if they aren't vegan they can keep you accountable. ( try an app for reminders )
Second, is what you keep in your fridge. I've learned that veggies and fruits are so much cheaper than all that junk and frozen food. Plan your meals! It will make things 100% easier than you think. Pack lunches and make sure what you decided to eat makes you excited. The more excited the less you'll want to linger by the pantry.
Here are 3 breakfast-dinner vegan options!
What I bought: Breakfast
Frozen: Strawberries, mangos, peaches, pineapples. (Add almond milk and ice for the best morning smoothies. You can also add protein power is you are hitting a workout or chia seeds for a great source of fiber.
Oatmeal: good for overnight oats, add agave to sweeten and done! (peanut butter and bananas for a twist)
Avocados/ Chickpea Toast: I got this recommendation from a fellow blogger. I have to say it is amazing. I left the link below.
What I bought: Lunch
Quinoa Bowls: ( strawberries/ blueberries/mango) I know this combination may sound crazy, but it is amazing. I actually started eating this before the whole vegan for a month because my mom makes it weekly. So great for a light lunch.
Sushi: Not all sushi is vegan so make sure if you are buying to check that out. I learned how to make my own sushi and personally its way easier than waiting in Dallas' top sushi restaurant for 45 + minutes for one roll.
Pho: Lemongrass Pho is great for those colder days where you need soup to warm the soul. Below I shared my favorite Vegan Pho recipe.
What I bought: Dinner
Tacos: Tofu, mango tacos may not sound appetizing, but they are. I would not even try tofu before this let alone in a taco. Finding the right recipe and seasoning make an important difference.
Avocado Pesto Pasta: As a pasta lover finding a good pasta made without butter, eggs, milk, etc was a task. I think I hit the spot with this pasta. I had bowtie pasta and added the pureed avocado sauce. It makes the perfect combination.
Homemade Dumplings: There are nights where I would rather eat light so I like to pair my kale salad with homemade dumplings.
Fruit, almonds, roasted chickpeas, dried mangos, kale chips.
Are you going to stay vegan?
Personally, I loved the experience. I loved finding better ways to make healthy food fun. Being vegan does not mean you just eat rabbit food. There are so many options and stores that offer what you need. As of right now I think I will keep some vegan eating habits in my life, and not others. I already don't eat meat or drink cows milk. Eating vegan made me feel overall better. I never felt that yucky feeling after a bag of chips or way too greasy pizza. I just think this was a big step towards better eating.
One Last Thing: Stay tuned for my nutrition plan outs coming out soon! So glad I got to share this journey.
Creating healthy habits is one of the most beneficial things you can do for yourself. I started my health journey a little over a year ago. Over this course of time I have learned a lot. I have built multiple healthy habits that have helped me stay consistent, motivated, and overall feeling better.
# 1 Make a meal plan/ grocery list.
As a busy person I found that planning my meals at least 5 out of the 7 days helped me so much. I never overate. It ate the right amount of fruits, veggies, carbs, and proteins. Sit down on a Sunday/ Grocery shopping day and write down realistically what you need vs want. STOP buying things you know will temp you. Fill you cart with yummy healthy foods rather than buying the cookies and tempting later. We all know you aren't just going to have one cookie. If the junk isn't there you wont be able eat it!
#2 Stop setting unrealistic goals.
Trust me you aren't going to lose 20 pounds in 3 days. It just doesn't happen. Stop forcing yourself into unrealistic diets that end up making things worse. If you want to reach a goal set milestones. Set up a point system. Something that helped me was a dollar per 8 ounces of water I drank. It sounds like nothing but when you have that extra money to use on what you please you will feel accomplished and happy.
#3 60 minuetes a day really does make a difference.
Set time for a work out. It does not need to mean go to the gym. You can get a great wrokout from home. We all know there is at least 30-60 minuetes where you aren't doing much during the day. Set that time to do yoga, meditate, follow videos off of youtube, etc. On a busy day where the gym just wasn't possible some of my favorite things to do is us my resistance bands while I make dinner, and end the night by doing a HIT workout.
My Favorite Fitness youtuber:
#4 Have water with you at all times.
Everyone says it, "drink water". Its true. I know sometime drinking regular water gets boring so add lemon, lime, fruits, etc. One of my favorite things to do is use all natural veggie/ fruit squeeze tubes in my water. This helps me get my vitamins in and my water.
#5 Find something you love, something to be passionate about. I can't even stress this enough. I dreaded going to the gym because cardio sucked. As a former boxer, weight training and boxing became my now workouts. I really love doing it. Thats the goal find something that you won't go in say " I hate this, maybe another day." Try new things wether its trying paleo, vegan diets, or yoga, pilates, and weight training. You're bound to love something.
One Last Thing: Don't compare yourself. It won't help at all.
Sooo its that time of the year again where everyone swears to lose weight and eat healthy. Well lets be real, not happening. Being healthy and living fit is a lifestyle and NOT A DIET. I learned this the hard way. You are never going to lose weight or become healthier if you are simply saying and not doing. Dieting all the time is not the way. If you start changing small things in your diet to become healthier at a slow pace this will help you and you body turn that into positive goodness!!! Throughout 2017 I lost a lot of weight and gained some. Its all about making it a lifestyle. In honor of the typical New Years Resolution, I am inviting you all to join me on my reset. I typically already do this 4 month out of the year spread out, but we are starting fresh January 1st. Here it is...
One Last Thing: I want to thank everyone who entered and sumbitted into my giveaways! It was a success with sending a total of 504 Books and Toys to the Chicagoland Area! I picked the bonus winner by seeing who was active and supporting!
BONUS WINNER: @iamdayanna
As a busy person I like to have my gym-bag packed and ready to go. The majority of the time it stays in my car and I swap items out. These are my top essentials that I NEED to be able to get my week of workouts done.
#1 JBL E45BT Wireless Headphones: These are my holy grail, I got them as a gift and I was super impressed. They stay on through all my HIT workouts and zone out everything around me. They help me focus on my workout and only that.
#2 Belus Resistance Bands: Belus sent me these bands to review and I love them! They are a essential in my bag, and help me kill a leg day. They are really great quality and easy to use. I also love the fact that they come in a carry on baggie that fits in my purpse and gym bag.
#3 MIRA Insulated Water Bottle: I got the marble MIRA waterbottle a while back and found it recently. It keeps my water ice cold for hours. One of my biggest pet peeves is hitting a workout without cold water to keep me hydrated, with MIRA its never a problem.
#4 Gaiam Medallion Yoga Mat: Yoga isn't something I do usually daily. I use the mat mainly when I am doing any sort of dumbbell work, weights, etc. I like keeping a mat with me just because its cleaner than using in gym mats. It also is really easy to use anywhere and everywhere.
#5 Burts Bees Facial Cleansing Towelettes: Before a workout I usually have makeup or at least mascara on. Personally working out with makeup on usually make me break out, so I prefer a clean face and these towelettes clean up the mess and help freshen up so fast.
#6 Peacock Flare Mascara: Yes, I know I said I don't wear makeup while working out. BUT, I always keep an extra mascara just in case I end up needing to head out post workout. I have days where in the middle of a workout I have another meeting to catch. This is my favorite Covergirl Mascara, check it out!
#7 Coco Butter Vaseline: These mini lip balms are in almost all of my bags because they work so well. Keeping me moisturized and glossy all day.
#8 Mio Skincare Gym Kit: This is the one thing that without a double will be in my bag! ALWAYS. The workout swipes are golden. They help when I have a random errand or meeting to catch after a workout. Helps me look fresh and GLOW. I cannot stress how much these make your skin GLOW. Definitely a must try!
One Last Thing: Always carry an extra pair of leggings!!
For the longest time I could never accept the truth. Now its something I talk about freely because I stopped letting anxiety control me. I remember at a young age feeling my heart thump at even the thought of getting up to sharpen a pencil. A million thoughts ran through my head. What if everyone looks at me? Do I look funny? Will I attract unwanted attention? I would rather sit in class without a pen or pencil than getting up to sharper one. I grew up with a constant bubble of what if's over my head. For so long everyone said its just stress... It's not just stress. It is a battle within yourself.
In 8th grade I had some of the most amazing friends who helped me realize I was bigger than my anxiety. It may sound silly, but the begining of the end began when I let someone who was just a face in my class read a memoir that meant the world to me. I refused to let anyone near my writing. I couldn't open up like that in fear of being judged. On a random day I made the random decision to stop letting this anxiety control EVERYTHING. He read my memoir and I remember thinking, "Well...this is the end." In reality it wasn't. He read the whole thing as I scanned his paper on Dwayne Wade. I feared his reaction, the humiliation I would face. I could hear the clock tick and eyes stare as they watched. I didn't face any of that. It's something I talk about to this day because the moment he told me he liked it, everything changed. How can this boy I don't know understand? How can he like what I wrote? Is he saying that to be nice? He was the first person I ever shared my writing with. He was also the first person to assure me that none of those worries mattered. I didn't have to live my life yearning to please anyone.
Now I take that and use it in my every day life. I don't have to be perfect. I don't have to please anyone. I do have days where my negative thoughts spirl in circles around my head. I do have days where I feel like the world is against me. I do have days where my anxiety is so bad breathing feels like running a marathon.
It wasn't until sophmore year that I controlled it.
Today I am able to manage and I started finding the silver lining in everything. I do my best to plan and organzie. I find that writing and expressing myself in different ways helps me calm myself. I won't lie and say everything is better now. It's not I am a full time student, have a full time job, run a blog, and do a million and other things. I've accepted that not everyone is going to be like the boy in 8th grade. Not everyone will support me and not everyone will understand what its like to live with anxiety. It's upon myself to overcome and battle my way to becoming a better person.
One Last Thing: Don't let anyone tell you mental health is not important.
This is a real tough topics to write about. Everyone has their days where you simply are munching on crackers, cookies, and anything you can get your hands on. I cant lie and say I don't have those day, especially these days. Aside from the holiday madness I have been Alternate Intermittent Fasting. I have been doing this for over a year off an on. I burn fat so quickly by doing this, but it isn't something I could do year round. As a kid I grew up eating really well balanced meals, I just was never as skinny as all the other girls around me. I grew to love myself and my body before I made the decision to lose weight. I didn't make the decision for anybody, but myself. SO HERE IT IS...
Intermittent Fasting is not a diet. I do tend to eat healthier when I am intermittent fasting. It is a habit of eating. I don't so this all the time, but when I do it helps me feel great.
8am - 12pm: Eating period.
I usually wake up around 6:15 on work days, although I stay in bed until 7/7:30. I take that time to work on any blog related, homework, marketing, or scouting emails that need to be done. One of the hardest things for me is drinking water. I try to keep a water bottle by my bed. Recently I have doubled my water intake and it has helped keep me so energized. I started my eating period by drinking water and preparing breakfast. Everyday is different, but more commonly I drink a green smoothie, chia pudding, and or bowl of fruit with agave. By 9 I am on my way to work. Around 11:00/ 11:30 I grab a granola bar to finish of my last hour of my eating period. My favorites are KIND; granola bars in cinnamon oat, or Bobo oat bars.
During this time I am much to busy to be eating so it is easy for me... on most days. I am constantly drinking water. Sometimes water gets boring so I add lemon, lime, and strawberries for a twist. If I have time I get a workout in focusing on my areas I need most work in.
At this time I am USUALLY home from work or on my way home. I try my best to meal prep so I don't cheat my time when I am fasting. At this time I munch down on a strawberry kale salad, salmon, quinoa, and a glass of almond milk. Those 4 things are my go to fast and easy dinner choices.
After dinner I keep myself busy, and prep for my night time routine. I continue to drink tea or water until before bed. I do use supplements like vitamin c, iron, and fish oil.
Each day I have a certain time block to eat in. There are so many different ways to do intermittent fasting. Make sure to do your research before jumping in. When I am fasting I make sure I am getting a full 7-8 hours of rest. You don't want to overwork your body. I find that this method has really worked for me. It was helped me better my eating habits and overall lose weight. So thats my story, but best believe the health and fitness journey is not over yet.
One Last Thing:
"Love your body, and teach your mind to respect it."
I've been a Chicago Bulls fan for as long as I can remember. Growing up in Chicago being a Bulls fan was something you're born with, like the color of your eyes. Yeah, as I grew other teams caught my attention and I'm a fan of other teams and players, but my heart belongs to the BULLS. Having relatives in Indiana, and California brought the Pacers and Golden State Warriors into my life. After a long wait I was finally given the opportunity to head to game here and watch what all the Dallas folks rave about. Of course I was a little down the game wasn't v.s. the Bulls, but the Spurs. It was still an amazing experience. So here's a little bit about how my day went.
Around 2:50pm my brother Samuel and I were headed home to grab a bite before the game. Sounds pretty early considering the game started at 7. Reaching the city around 5 we toured the American Airlines Stadium inside and out as well as Downtown Dallas.
By 6 pm we were up close and personal on the sidelines checking out Danny Green shoot around preping for game night. At 6:30 we were scanning for out seats and roaming the stadium for a tour. Game time started it was a blast. Not being a major true fan of the teams did have me a little off, although Samuel decided to rep a Spurs hat.
4th quarter and the Mavs and Spurs were head and head. Spurs ending up winning the game, throwing all the Mavs fan for a spin when they nailed 3's one after another in the last couple mintues of the game. The Buzzer went off and we slimmed 6 rows down from out seats to get aonce again get up close and personal with media, espn, and Dirk in his odd beige suit. Overall the experiecne was worth wild. I was so greatful for the tickets and plan to return. Maybe next time it will be against the Bulls...