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Things I Learned in the First Month of 2011

I suck at setting long-term fitness goals, and that’s okay. I’m a lot more successful when making simple short-term healthy switches.

I’m not invincible. After spending two weeks this month being seriously sick, I learned that I have to be more careful with my health. Being “healthy” and actually being healthy are two different things.

Poutine pizza is alright. But poutine pizza with donair sauce could be fantastic. Maritimers? You with me?

Sometimes I feel pressure to fit into a certain “blog category.” Is it a fitness blog? Is it a food blog? Is it a lifestyle blog? Daily journal? Photography? Wordy? Who gives a crap. It’s my blog and all it is, is a reflection of me and my intentions.

There was a point when I had a serious chocolate tooth. These days, I seem to have an insatiable butter tooth.

 

I know 25 is still young. But why does it feel so old?

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Because I go to shows featuring a band that was popular 10 years ago. And I now wake up after a punk show feeling like I’ve been run over by a truck. I don’t recover from cheap beer and loud guitars as well as I used to…

I have A LOT I still need to see, eat and experience in this city. Time is running out!!

Mini pies are the new macarons. Which are the new cupcakes. Nice try whoopie pies.

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I can not workout for 10 days and not gain weight. Instead, I can gain weight by eating copious amounts of birthday pie.

Personal training is what I want to do. In some sense anyways. I get a complete high off teaching people and motivating them. When I first started, I was warned by a past PT that it was addicting. I can now see why.

Bonjour Bonjour Brioche on Queen E. has the best French toast I’ve ever tasted. French toast made with leftover pastries – such as this flaky chocolate swirl bread.

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Meeting other bloggers is always an amazing and fun experience.

But meeting Twitter friends is pretty cool too!

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Taking a break from high intensity exercise this month was one of the best decisions I’ve made for my body in a long time. Especially after 5 months of hitting the weights and intervals hard.

I miss my hometown like WOAH.

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And I miss being around my family.

Yoga. Is. Bliss. Even in the moments when I’m cursing the instructor for making me vinyasa for the 50th time. I want everyone to be able to experience happiness in movement, and that’s why I’m supporting Power of Movement in this upcoming month. Click here to read my post about why I’m participating in the world’s largest yoga fundraiser, and click here to donate $5 to a very worthy cause.

 

Starting February off right with a VLOG tomorrow and the Simply Bar giveaway winner! See ya then!

Question of the Day: What did you learn in January?

Starting The Week Off Right

No better way to start off the week than with a plate of pancakes.

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Dairy-Free (ish) Protein Pancakes to be exact. I almost scrambled them in my pre-coffee Monday morning daze. But I managed to save them and ended up with crispy edges instead. Score!

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Dipped in 1 tbsp cashew butter whisked with 3 tbsp sugar-free syrup.

Then for my mid-morning snack I had an amazing combo – rosemary biscuit + pear cardamom butter.

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I whipped up a batch of these rosemary biscuits for the crew at the running store this weekend. The flavour paired amazingly with the spiced pear butter. I luuuuurve rosemary!!

Finally, I thought this was an odd thing to find at the grocery store last week:

IMG_5208 Frozen figs! I’ve seen fresh ones, but never packaged frozen ones. Seems like an odd fruit to freeze because of the mushy centre…no?

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They aren’t the little figs either. In fact, quite ginormous.

I defrosted one in the microwave and chopped up the mushy fruit to add to a yogurt mess.

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The usual – yogurt, protein powder, chia seeds, raw oats, cinnamon, almond butter and maple syrup. And of course – fig! The frozen kind was only $2.75 a bag and would probably be decent for cooking or baking with.

 

Simply Switch Check-In

It’s been a week since I talked about the switches I committed to, inspired by The Simply Bar. Time to re-visit them to stay on track!

1. Switch out sugary desserts with natural sweets.

I was thinking today about how much my sugar intake has decreased even in the first two weeks of this year. I can now go full days without any sort of chocolate, which was virtually unheard of just a few weeks ago. I still have a piece here and there, and I still have dessert when the occasion allows. But I don’t feel like I need something sweet after every single meal. And if I do want something, I grab a clementine or small handful of grapes instead.

2. Switch out 5 minutes of internet time for meditation time.

I am struggling the most with this one. I’ve probably only done this one-third of the days so far. It’s not so much giving up the internet time, but sitting and doing nothing for 5 minutes that feels difficult. It’s hard channelling energy inward when I’m so used to sending it outward!

3. Switch out one workout a week with yoga.

I was doing this until I fell onto my death bed with ebola or whatever illness it was that I had. Then I didn’t workout for 10 days. I’m currently working on group coupons for three different yoga studios in Toronto, and I’m reeeealy excited about all of them. So I don’t see this being all that challenging!

4. Switch out unreplied e-mails for replied ones!

This is taking a very conscious effort on my part. It’s like my inherent messy and lazy nature is seeping into how I manage my online inbox as well. Most days when I read an e-mail I have to talk myself into responding to it right away. But I am doing it. Except on weekends. My clients joke that I am unreachable on weekends because I just don’t have the attention span or time to sit down at the computer until Monday mornings.

 

Other switches include grabbing healthier snacks – check! Exploring my city more – got an itinerary planned for the week! Switching my morning munching with my morning vitamins – check! And switching out my afternoon coffee or tea with more water instead – check!

How about you guys? What are your Simply Switches this month and how are you doing with them?

A December Goal Check-In

Hello and happy Waffle Wednesday friends!

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I have a non-protein version to share with you today. Whipping up waffle/pancake batters are easy peasy. All you need is a flour-like substance, baking powder to fluff it up, egg to hold it together and a liquid to get the right consistency!

A Whole-Wheat Waffle For One:

  • 6 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 stevia packet (if you like it sweet)
  • 3 tbsp egg whites (double the recipe and use a whole egg)
  • 1/3 cup almond milk

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One waffle is 255 calories, 2g fat, 42g carbs, 4g fibre and 13g protein. Not bad for a decadent breakfast, no?

I topped mine with smoked salmon cream cheese, scrambled eggs and a drizzle of maple syrup.

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My first time buying the Philadelphia smoked salmon cream cheese flavour and I really like it! It’s a great way to add that smoky flavour to things. It was a fabulous pairing with the waffle, eggs and syrup. Definitely a winning combo :)

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We are now officially halfway through the month of December. That means it’s time to check in on that December goal I set two weeks ago:

So instead, I am entering the month of December with one important goal. One that will take a lot concentrated effort to accomplish. Something I will have to nag myself about several times daily, but also help me end the month feeling like I’ve done a lot to better myself.

For me, December will be all about ending fat talk.

Ha. I can’t believe I just quoted myself :P

I wasn’t joking when I said this was a very important goal to me. That’s why I wanted to dedicate a whole post to it as a reminder to stick to it!

One thing I forgot to mention in the original post is that I don’t participate in fat talk vocally. For me, it’s all about the inner dialogue that is always going on in my brain.

I’ve never been one of those girls who turns to people and complains about my chubby tummy or most recent face breakout. But I am one of those girls who will look in the mirror and think to myself “Susan, you look awful today.”

These thoughts are not okay. I can exercise and eat as well as I want, but internally berating myself like this is probably the least healthy thing I could do.

After setting this goal two weeks ago, I made a concerted effort to tell myself I looked good every time I looked in the mirror. It wasn’t easy. It often felt contrived. But at least I was doing it and that was progress.

Towards the end of Week 1 I lost it. I forgot to consistently make the effort and I found myself looking down at my body and critiquing it.

In Week 2 I managed to snap out of it. I recognized that it would take more than just saying good things to myself. I had to do things that made me feel better too.

1. Wearing flattering clothing. My work uniforms are not flattering at all. This is a big contributing factor to my always thinking I look like poo. But I’m working on it! Wearing nice shirts underneath or cute jackets. My legs are my best quality, so showing them off in leggings or shorts at the gym.

2. Dressing up when I’m not at work. This is probably the opposite situation from most people. But I purposely have to dress down for my jobs. I essentially live in yoga pants. Mega comfy, but leaves me feeling like a shlump a lot. I don’t care if I’m overdressed on my days off – I wear my nice jeans, nice tops, do my hair and make-up. It leaves me feeling like a million bucks.

3. Eating fruits and veggies. Even when I’m chowing down on the world’s best pancake, surrounding it with snacks filled with fresh produce leave me feeling better about my indulgences. When I put good things in my body, I subsequently feel, well, good about my body!

4. Being active and not working out. Wearing a pedometer woke me up to the fact that while I may spend an hour working out 5 days a week, I don’t move my body much outside of those allotted 60 minutes. In the past two weeks I’ve been thinking more in terms of “what did I do to move my body today?” Sometimes it’s a sweaty cardio sesh, other times it’s a heavy lifting workout. But most of the time it’s walking, light elliptical, yoga. I feel better about my body when I move it consistency over the course of the day, rather than just killing it in one small chunk of time.

So that is where I’m at! Still a lot of work to do in the coming weeks. Especially seeing as I’m going home TOMORROW and will be facing a whole new set of challenges. I can already say I feel way better about myself than I did two weeks ago. This December goal couldn’t have come at a better time for me :)

 

Question of the Day:

1) How are you doing on your December goals?
2) What sort of things do you like to do to feel good about yourself?

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