Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Buh Bye Blogger

Well folks, now's the time for that announcement:

I have a new website: Please visit me there.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Book Worm

Ever since I was a kid I've loved reading. While most kids would get in trouble for watching TV at the dinner table, I would get in trouble for reading my book at the dinner table.

I went through a period in college where I wasn't reading for entertainment. Far too much reading for learning purposes which made me not want to read much more when the day was done. I've since gotten into the habit of reading before bed, which isn't always as much time as I'd hope, but it's the best I can do with my busy schedule.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Running vs Walking

There’s no denying that cardio should be an important part of your fitness regime. Not only does it keep your heart strong, but it’s a great calorie burner. I have always gone for a short run around my neighborhood after my evening class. 
My Running Trail

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Weekend Report

After months of harassing my cousin (who's pretty much like a brother to me) to come visit, he finally made the trip down from Calgary to hang out and catch up. Apparently having a girlfriend has become more of a priority than hanging with his favorite cuz....Pfft. I still don't think this girl exists outside of photos since I haven't had the pleasure of meeting her yet.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Sweet Caramel

A coworker brought me a little surprise the other day. She picked up these little sweet treats at Nutters and gave me a couple packs to try.

I take my coffee black as adding sugar and cream, while delicious, add so many extra and unnecessary calories to your morning caffeine fix. If I'm looking for a sweet fix, I keep some packets of Stevia in my desk at work but I may just be hooked on these little delights. Before pouring in my coffee I decided to try a little taste first. I nearly died. So much caramel sweetness. Half of a package is a perfect amount for one cup and even tastes delicious in a cup of Keurig brewed French Vanilla.

It's not quite the same as my frappachino or latte addictions from Starbucks, but those are only once in awhile treats and the Krisda Cafe Caramel will make a fine substitute in the mean time. They even come in almond and vanilla flavors, which I may have to pick up now.

Speaking of Starbucks: from now until May 15 it's Frappachino Happy Hour (1/2 price frapps!) from 3-5pm. I've been finding it very hard not to go everyday now that they have my ultimate favorite the Mocha Coconut, which I discovered only previously existed in Hawaii. I'm holding out until my weekend cheat day but I'm dreaming about it daily until then. If only they didn't have calories.....
My daily fix in Hawaii

Stay Tuned!

I'm very very very excited for an exciting announcement regarding this blog!
Stay tuned to find out more...

Or if you're really curious I will accept bribes!

Orrrr maybe I'll tell you when I reach 4000 hits to this thing?

Monday, May 9, 2011

May Showers

Saturday was a very special day, my best friends bridal shower. I was very fortunate that her boss and coworker who are very close friends to her decided they wanted to take over the planning for this. They did a wonderful job hosting and made for a very memorable day. I'm so honored to have such an amazing best friend and to be a part of this precious time in her life.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Spring Cleanup

Hey guys

I have had so many things I've wanted to blog about the past few weeks but my life is so hectic right now I just can't seem to find the few minutes to sit down write!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Not Feeling the Love

Dear Friends and Loyal Readers:

I know you're there lurking. I've discovered I can check the stats of my blog. See where you found me, where you're visiting from, what you're looking at. Super exciting stuff! I know how many people creep me daily but I'm just not feeling any love from you guys.

There's a serious lack of comments, lack of feedback, lack of anything aside from creeping. I really want to continue to entertain you, share my love of music and quest for total health and fitness and all the fun stuff in between. I want to know what you think, who you are and what keeps you coming back!

So please, share the love, leave some comments!

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Worst Concert Experience EVER

Every time I go to the concert I leave on this natural high thinking to myself that it was the BEST concert I had ever been to. Of all the bands and artists I've gone to see live, I couldn't pick out one favorite show as they all bring a unique experience.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Show Me Your Fit

Today's blog is inspired by the Fitnessista. She put out a call to her readers to send in pictures of what they do to keep fit, whether it's something they eat, wear or them doing something active. I wanted to submit something myself but couldn't decide on one thing to include, so I decided to put together a little pictorial of a typical day for me.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Earth Day!

Tomorrow is Earth Day and in celebration both Starbucks and Good Earth Cafe are giving away free coffee or tea when you bring in a travel mug.

I've never tried Good Earth's coffee before but I'm headed there right now to try it out and plan on taking a walk down to Starbucks tomorrow.

Friday, April 15, 2011

La Casa Pergola

Today I attended a lunch with my department for a coworker who’s off to get married (Congrats Kyra!). We went to a locally owned Italian restaurant, La Casa Pergola, right across the street, which has always been a great choice. I was a little concerned about what to order today as I wanted to keep it clean after a little indulgence yesterday. I was informed that the owner trains at the same gym I go to and that she would be happy to cook me a clean meal. I mentioned this to my server and she was very accommodating and happy to custom make me something fit for my eating requirements. It was a refreshing change from dreading all the things I ask them to change with my meals!

I ended up with a half order of Insalata Mista (artisan greens, tomato, cucumber, red onion & kalamata olives), grilled salmon made with no oil or butter and a custom made balsamic dressing with hot sauce (I can’t remember the other things she said she threw in there). It was perfect and so delicious!

As I was out with coworkers, I didn’t think it was acceptable to whip out my phone for a snapshot, so my apologies for no picture of my salad creation.
I wish customizing food orders was this easy and un-intimidating at all restaurants, it would definitely make eating out a lot less stressful for me.
If you are ever looking for a nicer meal, clean or not, La Casa Pergola is wonderful and their staff are amazing! Go check them out!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Stay Classy

East Coast hip hop artist Classified made a stop in Red Deer last night while promoting his latest album 'Handshakes and Middle Fingers'. I was excited to see how Class has progressed since I last saw him at play at Shark's Garage on Canada Day, 2007.

Canada Day 2007 Me, Classified, Ashley

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Yesterday marked my parents 25th wedding anniversary. With today's divorce rates being so high, it's so refreshing to see couples reach milestone anniversary dates. While my parents might not be perfect, they get mad at each other and disagree with each other once in awhile, these things are completely normal and at the end of the day I know they still love each other. They are each other's best friends and when the time comes I aspire to have a long lasting marriage like they've had. Here's to 25 more guys!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Bucket List: Be Involved With a Charity

Back in January I hinted that I was working on crossing a couple things off my Bucket List . I'm happy to finally share with you one of those things today!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Stuffed French Toast

I follow a pretty strict diet like I've discussed on here before. But the key to not going insane is letting myself have a cheat meal once a week. I usually do this at Sunday morning when I go for brunch with my favorite people. It's one of my favorite things to look forward to, not just because I go crazy eating whatever I want, but spending time with people I love.

We usually try somewhere new for brunch. If we really like somewhere we might go a couple times. This past Sunday we went to Glenn's Family Restaurant.. Glenn's is a locally owned restaurant that has a very extensive tea menu and a large home cooked food menu.

This weekend they were at the Red Deer Health and Wellness Show  Vegan cafe, so if you are looking for Vegan options in Red Deer, Glenn's is a great place to try.

My meal for the morning was no where near vegan however. I always have a hard time ordering healthy breakfast as eggs give me horrible stomach aches which makes breakfast choices very limited. I decided to roll with the Stuffed French Toast with extra blueberries on top. It comes stuffed with cream cheese, topped with mixed berries and grilled to perfection. To me, anything with cream cheese is perfection.

It was obviously delicious because it sure didn't last on the plate long.

If you are ever in Red Deer looking for a good home-cooked meal, breakfast or not, try Glenn's, I guarantee you won't be disappointed.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Five: Albums I'm Listening to Right Now

Alright folks, it's been awhile since I've talked music so I thought I'd share the top 5 albums that I can't get enough of right now. It's a pretty eclectic mix, as all my music is.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Recipe: Amazeballs!

So thanks to fellow Rocky Mountain Houser Danielle's addicting blog, I've now added another blog obsession to my daily must reads, Fitnessista. Gina is an adorable girl down in the States who blogs twice daily with recipes, workouts, etc. I'm obsessed.

A reoccurring food item in daily eats is something she calls 'amazeballs', which are little balls of protein goodness that I've always wanted to try and make. The look and some DE-LISH!

Well, the time has come. Yesterday my nutrition guy switched up some of meals to give me better pre and post workout meals. My pre-workout meal was a new recipe for a protein bar which is very similar to Gina's Amazeballz. Whilst making them I was a little skeptical of how they would taste but after a small sample I knew they were amazing. And hence, I now have my own amazeballz that I can't wait to consume before my daily workout. I'm obsessed.

Here's the amazeball recipe for you all to try and fall in love with:

4 cups oats, dry
4 oz unsweetened shredded coconut
4 tablespoons natural peanut butter
4 scoops Whey protein (I have vanilla but I think a chocolate would be super good too)
2 cups cottage cheese

Combine all ingredients in large bowl and mix with hands.

Roll into 24 balls (they will be a bit larger than a golf ball). I put them all on a cookie sheet and then popped them into the fridge to harden overnight but you can stick them into individual bags, or whatever storage you like.

No need to bake them, just mix, roll, chill and enjoy before your workout!

Nutrition Info for 1 ball:
150 calories
11g protein
5 g fat
14g carbs
1g fiber
2.8g saturated fats
2 g sugar
80mg sodium
14mg cholesterol
20mg calcium

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

5: Things to Do For Spring

I have a few projects I want to work on in the coming months since I accomplished all my January goals.

1. Create a travel collage of places I've been and places I want to go. I want this created around a world map. A good friend of mine created something similar with a map on corkboard with colored pins for where she's been and wants to go with photos along the edge and I think it's amazing! I want to create something to showcase photos from trips I've been on as well as remind me of where I want to go (and that I need to save like crazy to get there).

2. Create an inspiration board. For those of you that don't know what this is, it's basically a collage of inspiring words, pictures, etc to remind you of your goals. A visual reminder that you can assist you with reaching your goals. I want one beside my vanity where I will see it every morning when I get ready for my day.

3. Clean out closet. There's alot of clothes I don't wear anymore and I really want to buy some new spring clothes. I want to clean everything I haven't worn in the past year out, take it to Plato's Closet and hopefully get some cash for it, donate the rest and then go treat myself to some new spring/summer gear!

4. Run 5k. By the end of the fall I had reached 5k which was a feat for me given I'm not a great runner. I haven't ran all winter and I really want to make more progress this year so I want to work to reach that 5k mark earlier in the season so I can maybe reach 10 by the end of the season!

5. Look into getting a website again. A few years ago I used to blog to Word Press and I loved my little personal site. I really want to have that again so I can have better layouts, backgrounds, etc and also to separate my fitness/diet posts from my regular life/music posts as I would really like to blog more about my health and fitness journey but don't want the other posts to get lost in the shuffle. I also have some plans for the future that could really benefit from a personal site as well if I get that off the ground so it would be an investment in the future. I need to look into hosting and give a special friend a ring about doing some design work for me.

So there you have it, a few little goals for me this spring. Along with those I want to make sure I'm keeping my budget under check. I've found I had to reduce my monthly spending allowance as I was running short at the end of the pay period when it came to groceries. I'm not sure if that was because I've been spending too much on my groceries or what was going on, but I took away $40 so I have $100 weekly.

I'm also working really hard on my eating, now working with a nutrition coach (who happens to be my boyfriends best friend which makes cheating really hard to get away with). My goal isn't to lose weight (it never is), but to become more lean and let the muscles I've been working so hard to build shine!

Do you have any spring time goals? I'd love to hear them!

Monday, March 28, 2011

3000 Letters for Japan

Hello Dear Friends,

You are all more than aware of the recent events in Japan, as I'm sure you are being constantly bombarded by devastating images of north-eastern Japan. Thousands of people are left without a home, school, and missing family members after last weeks tsunami. I live so close to the devastated area, but am hardly affected at all by it, and I feel like doing something proactive to help those most affected would be far more productive than constantly watching and reading the news.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

My Fitness Journey

I often get comments that I'm obsessed with working out. It's true, I'd rather go to the gym than go out drinking. I'd rather spend an evening pre-cooking and measuring meals for the week than dining on leftover Chinese. I thrive on the burn of sore muscles and am pour of the stack of empty cottage cheese containers I compile in a week.

But I haven't always been this way.

Friday, March 11, 2011


I woke up this morning to hear news of an 8.9 magnitude earthquake hitting Japan, followed by over 30 aftershocks and a massive tsunami. This earthquake is the largest ever to hit Japan, and the 5th largest in the world. Death tolls are expected to be over 1,000.

This news breaks my heart - Japan is one of my biggest loves. I spent 4 years throughout high school studying the language and culture. During the time I became close with both sensei's, hosted an exchange student and became friends with other students from Japan. My dream for the past ten years has been to travel there.

While the schools we dealt with in high school were on a different island further north, I hope that everyone I have met over the years is safe and unaffected by this tragic event. My heart is heavy thinking of the devastation to this country.

Because of this I have donated $100 from my travel fund to the Canadian Red Cross to help with relief efforts. I urge you to donate as well, even if it's only $5, it can help in some way.

It only takes a few minutes to do online by Paypal or credit card - Canadian Red Cross - Japan Earthquake/Asia-Pacific Tsunami 

This weekend one of my best friends, Ashley, is donating half her tips from her waitressing job and her boss is matching whatever amount she raises.

My talented mother selling is ten 36"x24" stretched canvas prints for $195 (trust me, this is a steal of a deal) until March 17 will portion of the proceeds honoring the victims of the earthquake/tsunami. Details here

Pacifica Charity Print

What are you doing to help?

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Say NO To Sugar Substitutes!

No thanks! I think I'll stick to homemade goodies sweetened with Stevia.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Young Talent

On Friday, February 11, Lady Gaga released her latest single 'Born This Way'. Not a week later Lady Gaga posted a Youtube video on her Twitter stating "Can't stop crying watching this. This is why I make music. She is the future."

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Pay Yourself First

As I've mentioned before, my company provides courses for personal financial planning. The latest installment that I've taken was on Investment Planning. It talked about different investment products and strategies and what options are best for risk takers or more conservative investors.

It is something that I definitely want to allocate some extra money too when I am able to add it into my monthly budget. To start I want to incorporate one of the most basic investment strategies we talked about, Pay Yourself First.

With this strategy you save the equivalent of one hour's pay (this may take some calculation if you are on a yearly salary), and you put that money aside before you pay your mortgage/rent/bills/groceries/etc. It's up to you whether you want to collect this on a weekly or monthly basis, whatever works for you. Set up an automatic transfer for this before you can even think about spending it on anything else.

Instead of putting this aside into a savings account, where it won't accumulate much interest, put this into an investment account whether it's RSP's, long term investments or short term investments. Go sit down with a financial planner to figure out your options. It will bring you a much bigger pay out in the future. And really, who can argue with turning a little bit into a lot more money down the road?

Monday, February 14, 2011

Recipe: Banana Protein Muffins

As promised, here is the recipe for the banana protein muffins I made to take with me for the weekend. They taste JUST like regular banana muffins and will probably become a new staple snack for me.

1 banana
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup cottage cheese
8 egg whites
5 single serving packs of Stevia (available at Costco)
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp nutmeg
2 tbsp Agave nectar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Eating Out

I feel like I'm constantly taking two steps forward and one step back with my clean eating. I do so well during the week when I'm at home in my regular routine but the moment I have to eat out or go away for a weekend I fail and I fail horribly.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Five: Things to Show That Special Someone How Much You Care

 I've never been much of a supporter of Valentine’s Day. In fact over the years I've down right hated the holiday, despite being single or taken. These days I’m just becoming indifferent to it. I personally believe that you don’t need one day to show someone you care, you should do it all throughout the year. That being said, here are my ideas for ways to show your special someone just how much you care. There are so many different little things you can aside from the standard flowers, chocolates. While still appreciated and nice gestures, I think I can say that thinking outside the box will score you way more points. 

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Recipe: Protein Pancakes

For anyone following my blog that is interested in eating healthier, I wanted to share a recipe passed on to me from my wonderful boyfriend, Adam.

When I first saw this recipe I thought these were going to be disgusting, but they are easily my favorite meal. Not only do they taste great, but they are SO simple to make. Enjoy!

1/3 cup oatmeal
1/3 cup cottage cheese
3 egg whites

Blend together until it resembles a pancake batter. I throw it all in my magic bullet to blend in seconds.

Now here is when you get to be a little creative. You can add some cocoa powder or cinnamon and blend in some fruit for a bit of flavor. Be careful of what fruit you use though. I once tried blending in some frozen blueberries and it came out way too runny and wouldn't cook properly (they were a really pretty purple color though!).

Personally, once my pancakes are cooked I like to spread a tiny bit of natural peanut butter over them and top with a sliced up banana.  Yum!

What is your favorite healthy recipe? I'm always looking for some new ideas, so please share!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Be Accountable

Hello Friends! Can you believe we are already a week into February? Where is time going?!

I wanted to give you a little update on the progress of some of my goals so far.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Five: New Fitness Classes to Try

When I first started working out, I had no idea what to do. I would go to the gym, use the cardio equipement a little and watch the people on the weight machines wishing I knew how to use them properly to more out of my gym membership. Luckily the Collicut Centre here in Red Deer will set up a program with you where they go through all the equipment, show you how to use it properly, what settings and weights work best for you and design it based on your needs. However soon that became boring and I wasn't feeling I was getting enough from my workouts.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Stay Tuned!

I'm really excited to tell you all that I'm currently working on getting not one but TWO items crossed my bucket list in the coming months! You will have to keep reading to find out what those are!

If you want to take a guess at what the two items could be, check out the list here and leave me a comment!

In the mean time I wanted to share this rockin' song that just got released today. Travis Barker featuring Swizz Beatz, Lil Wayne & Rick Ross "Can a Drummer Get Some". I cannot wait for this album!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Cheer Leading Session!

I can't believe it's already the middle of January! It feels like just yesterday I was cursing all the delicious food that I couldn't stop eating over Christmas, making my goals for the year and getting back into my workout and diet routine.

For those that know me, you'd know I worked really hard for five weeks leading up to my family vaca in Hawaii. I was eating clean every day, leaving myself one day a week to eat normal, getting in some extra cardio before my daily workout, etc. I was happy with the results once those five weeks were over but they all went out the door as soon as I landed in Hawaii. I figured I was on vacation and could eat whatever I wanted without worry. That caught up with me before I even made it back to Canada and unfortunately lasted for two months right through to the Christmas season. It's amazing how five weeks of hard work can be reversed in a few short days.

Once the holiday festivities were over I told myself I wanted to go back to eating clean all the time, not just in preparation for anything. I reworked my meal plans to include more variety and more yummy recipes. Things were going great until this past week. I'm blaming part of it on the weather, it's been cloudy, snowy and friggin cold! My mood was in the dumps and I was craving chocolate like a mad woman. Conveniently I had a Costco size bag of chocolate chips in my cupboard from Christmas baking and found myself going for handful every day after lunch. If my mood wasn't bad enough, it was getting worse because I felt guilty for ruining day's eating with those extra calories. At times I questioned whether I was really going to follow through with this whole eating clean thing and miss out on all the delicious (and unhealthy) food there is out there.

It was a really bad week and I'm happy it's the weekend so I can relax, go for a guilt free brunch with some of my best friends and prepare for a better week. The sun is shining and I feel better already. I've even put that damn chocolate in a grocery bag and put it in a different cupboard to try and remove the temptation.

I'm not going to give up, I'm just going to accept the fact that it was a bad week and those happen sometimes. It doesn't mean I failed by any means.

For those of you have set goals or resolutions for yourselves this years, stick to it. Make your goals small, achievable and attainable. If you have a bad week like I did, don't beat yourself up over it. Acknowledge your mistakes and keep trying. You're capable of anything!

So now that I've gotten my motivational cheer leading out of the way, I thought I'd share with you my top 5 songs of the moment.

1) Shad & Dallas - Live Forever
2) Shad & Dallas - Listen
3) Grits - Ooh Ahh (My Life Be Like)
4) Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros - Home
5) Kanye West - All of the Lights

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Five: Anticipated Albums for 2011

With a new year comes an onslaught of new music to look forward to. I've already circled calendar dates waiting for certain albums to drop. The following are my five most anticipated albums for 2011.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Surviving Bikram Yoga Red Deer

Hello Friends,

I've just completed my very first session of yoga at the new Bikram Yoga Red Deer. Previously I practiced hot yoga at the Amaryllis Centre but it does not compare AT ALL to this yoga. I've already had a few people ask me how it differs and what to expect so here is the low down.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Welcome 2011

I can't believe it's the start of a new year already. It seems like just yesterday I was reviewing an entire decade and here we are, another year has flown by!

Have you made your resolutions?

Happy New Years!