Super Food!

When did it get so dark in the mornings? 

Today is my day off, from workouts, and I thoroughly enjoyed “sleeping in” until 6:30AM.  I actually could not figure out what that noise was at 6:30AM until I realized that my alarm had been going off for 5 minutes.  I feel awake and refreshed though… ready to tackle the day. But first, a little cup of joy…

My mornings have forever changed with the creation of Dunkin Donuts K-Cups!  Their coffee is such a treat and it’s making me uber happy these days.  In other news, I am striving to drink my coffee with only a splash of fat free half and half.  It’s easy to add a packet of splenda or a little sugar, but I love how coffee tastes so why sweeten it?  I also think Neal’s theories on artificial sweeteners is starting to get to me.

Do you use artificial sweeteners?  Any thoughts?

I’ve also been drinking 12 oz. of water each morning with 2 scoops of Amazing Grass‘ GREENSuperFood in Orange Dreamsicle.

I won these two products at the Healthy Living Summit conference back in August.  This week is the first week I’ve tried them and I’m honestly in love.  They also have a fantastic website where I signed up for their 2 week challenge.  I can’t say that I feel different (in three days), but the drink powder is really tasty and it feels great knowing that I’m putting such wonderful nutrients into my body.

Today looks to be a good day, rainy but good.  After work I need to go to a coffee shop to get some reading done.  (Anyone in DC recommend a cute coffee shop near a metro stop that isn’t Starbucks?)  Last night I had this grand plan to get all of my graduate work done for one of my classes but by the time I got home I was pooped.  Instead I watched Modern Family, which was awesome, and half of Law and Order SVU, not so awesome.  I love SVU, but last night’s episode was really odd and was too much like the real life case of Dominique-Strauss Kahn and the NYC maid.  It kinda bothered me that it was so close to that story.

Have a very happy Thursday and continue to make healthy living choices!

What are some of the healthy living choices you’ve made this week?  Now’s your time to brag!

I Want To Be The Biggest Loser

Staying motivated is an extremely important part of losing weight.  Back in 2006-2007 when I set out to lose weight, I had loving friends and family around me to support me, but my biggest motivator was actually the show The Biggest Loser.  Tonight, season 12 of the Biggest Loser, Battle of the Ages, starts.  Over the next 3-4 months, we will watch as these contestants work their butts off, literally, in the quest to win the battle over obesity.



As The Biggest Loser starts tonight, I hope to rekindle the motivation they gave me 5 years ago and to set out on a journey with them again.  I want to continue aspects of my scaleless summer, focusing on how my body feels and really looking at what’s on my plate.  In addition, I will continue to track my calories online, eating 1500 calories each day.  Starting today, I will weight myself every Tuesday morning along with the Biggest Loser competitors!

Starting Weight: 226.6 (I am shocked to see it in the 220’s)

My goal, for some time now, has been to break 200 pounds and I know I can do that!!  I want to lose more body fat and to get into even better shape.  I’m not too far off and I know I can reach this by the end of the year!  Who’s with me?

This Week’s Plan







Off– sick

Oatmeal with fig butter and pumpkin butter

Butter lettuce with northern beans, mozzarella cheese, fat free balsamic dressing

Chicken burger with ½ slice of cheese, ketchup, mustard and chips with salsa

Resting and graduate work


Spin AM

Banana and Orange Dreamsicle SuperFood Pre-Workout, Oatmeal with pumpkin butter and peanut butter post-workout

Leftover salmon and asparagus, apple sauce

Homemade pizza (cheese, onion and bell pepper)

The Biggest Loser


3 mile run

1 egg, 2 egg whites, English muffin,  laughing cow cheese, and Orange Dreamsicle SuperFood

Leftover salmon and asparagus, apple sauce

Leftover homemade pizza

graduate work


Spin AM

Banana and Orange Dreamsicle SuperFood Pre-Workout, Oatmeal with pumpkin butter and peanut butter post-workout

Progresso light soup

Gnocchi with light alfredo sauce

graduate work


30 min run

1 egg, 2 egg whites, English muffin,  laughing cow cheese, and Orange Dreamsicle SuperFood

Progresso light soup

Dinner at Nats game

Nationals baseball game with Team in Training buddies



Breakfast at Amish Market

Lunch at Iowa game


Amish Market with my Aunt, Iowa vs. ULM game


4 mile run

Protein bar pre workout, post workout ??



plenty of graduate work (big paper to write)

I hope that each of you are having an amazing week and are enjoying premiere week!

What TV shows have you been looking forward to watching this fall?

Here’s my fall DVR line up:

  • Castle
  • The Biggest Loser
  • The New Girl
  • Modern Family
  • Law and Order: SVU
  • Grey’s Anatomy
  • The Office
  • Pan Am

WOW– that’s 7.5 hours of TV… I’m thinking a few of those shows are going to have to give.

Football, Beer, and Shaving

It is a beautiful day here in Washington, DC.  The sun is shinning and there is no rain in sight!

Last night I watched the September 11 Dateline special ‘America Remembers‘ and let me tell you, I was a hot mess.  Although it is hard to watch, it’s important to remember where we all were 10 years ago and to think about all of the people affected by this tragedy.  I had planned to go to bed early last night, but I was sucked into this special and was glad I stayed up to watch it.


After sleeping in until 8AM this morning, I made a big ol’ glass of iced coffee, poured a bowl of Weetabix with some vanilla almond milk, and began to tackle some graduate work.

It’s really amazing to me how much you can accomplish when you just put your mind to it.  Sometimes it’s so easy to wallow in the thought of how much work you have to do, but if you actually sit down to do it you’ll be amazing how much you can get done in a short amount of time.  I cranked out 1 reading assignment and 3 writing assignments in a little under 2 hours… which was awesome!

I then did something I should have done a LONG time ago…. I shaved my legs.  God bless Neal and his patience with me and my lack of shaving.  I hate shaving.  Hate it.  Again, it doesn’t actually take that long, but it’s such a hassle.  I’m always amazed by women who shave their legs every day… how the heck do you do that?

Now she shaved with confidence!

After a quick run to Whole Foods to pick up some ground beef, hamburger buns, and Fat Tire Neal and I settled in at his apartment to watch the Iowa vs. Iowa State football game.

I love watching sports with Neal, though his stomach is usually in knots when we watch the Hawkeyes.  Over the past three years I’ve learned how to watch games with him…. I leave him alone.  If he wants to talk, he’ll talk.  If he wants something to eat, he’ll ask.  One piece of advice ladies… learned how to watch sports with your loved one.   You’ll both be happier, trust me 🙂 (source)

Happy Saturday!! What are y’all up to today?

Mission Wake Up

Mission “wake up when my alarm goes off and do not jump back into bed” is going really well this week.  Some mornings have been tougher than others, but the challenge to fight both the mental and physical in order to stick to my plan has been good.  I am finding that the nights I begin getting ready for bed by 10PM, thus getting me into bed around 10:30PM, leave me feeling awake and refreshed in the morning.  My toughest mornings tend to come after Neal and I have have hung out, whether we’ve been out at a ballgame (last night) or have stayed up late watching the shows we have on the DVR.  It is no fault of his, but I rarely get to bed before 11:30PM when we hang out.

So far this week I have set my alarm between 5:00AM and 6:00AM depending on when I have needed to be at the gym.  As soon as I acknowledge my alarm clock I popped out of bed, turn off the alarm and leave my bedroom before giving myself a change to think about going back to bed.  I also turn on lights around the house, which has been really helpful.  Training myself to wake up has fallen at a perfect time as I start graduate classes again on Monday and don’t want to miss out on going to the gym before work.

This fall looks to be a busy one, but I’m going into it with a clear head and a fantastic agenda.  I don’t know how it is for y’all, but the fall is a crazy season/time of year for me.  Everything seems to fall (no pun intended) between the months of September and December for me.

At the 'Art on the Ave' street festival in Del Ray last year

  • 2 graduate classes
  • Starting to prep my capstone project for my Masters
  • Work (fall is the busiest season at work as well)
  • Neal’s sister is having a baby
  • Training for Hot Chocolate 15K 
  • Possibly other road races (Wicked 10K, Turkey Trot 5K, Jingle All the Way 10K)
  • Baseball season continues
  • Football season (NFL and college)
  • Fantasy Football (in two leagues this year)
  • Fall TV starts (so excited about Biggest Loser, New Girl, Modern Family, Grey’s Anatomy, and Pan Am)
  • LOTS of birthdays (I swear, I have a gazillion friends with birthdays in the fall)
  • DC street festivals, markets, fall festivities (I love this website for DC area events)
  • Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas prep

At a Washington Redskins game

The fall is definitely my favorite time of year, but I have to go into it prepped and organized or it can become overwhelming.  Listing out the things I have going on, as I did above, is really helpful.  It gives me a rough draft of what I have coming up and what my focus will be on.  I then import the various events into my Google calendar.  I’m a huge fan of calendars and I love being able to categorize events and color code things.  On a weekly basis I make a list of to dos, especially for graduate school.  Lastly I’ll set reminders or “tasks” in Google calendar of things I need to get done on certain days, for example buying some cards today or sending out various emails.

In the end though, it’s about having fun and enjoying life.  Neal has taught me this!  It’s so easy for me to plan, plan, plan and not look at what’s right in front of me or what’s going on today.  Neal is great about living life one day at a time and I love him for that.  He helps me to enjoy every moment and not stress about the future.

Today should be a great day.  First on the agenda, getting my next few sets of Invisalign trays.  I am 6 trays in, so halfway done with my bottom teeth and 1/3 way done with my top!  After work I am meeting up with Matt and going to see Final Destination 5.  I’m nervous already, but that’s part of the thrill.  I’m definitely the kind of person who watches scary movies through her hands, but it’s like a roller coaster ride to me.  You get nervous, you get scared, but afterwards you want to do it all over again!

What is your favorite time of year?  What helps you to plan/organize your schedule?  If you live in DC, what fall event are you most looking forward to?

Key Lime Pie Throwdown!

Neal and I have a few traditions, which I love!

  • Watching Peanuts movies on various holidays each year like It’s the Great Pumpkin, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and  Be My Valentine… and secretly I’m hoping we’re watching Snoopy’s Getting Married soon 😉
  • Wickedly awesome Wednesdays… Neal’s turkey burgers and our DVR (Top Chef, Chopped, and Next Food Network Star tend to be on the docket, though I have an evil plan to get Project Runway on the Wednesday night lineup)

But one of my new favorite traditions falls on our anniversary each year.  Over the past two years, Neal and I have found ourselves each July conducting our very own throwdown!!  Last year for our anniversary we went to Philly and found ourselves having a Philly cheesesteak throwdown.  It was awesome!

So this year when we went to the Florida Keys, I just knew a key lime pie throwdown was in order.

We made our way down Duval Street in Key West and found 2 unique key lime pie shops, The Key Lime Pie Company and Kermit’s Key West Lime Shoppe.

We bought 1 piece of original key lime pie from each store and found a nearby bench to conduct the throwdown.

The Key Lime Pie Company (seen on left) was light and creamy, perfectly sweet and tart at the same time.  Kermit’s Key Lime Pie (seen on right) was a completely different constancy, having a thicker consistency with a tarter filling.  They were both fantastic and yet so different.

Neal was in heaven and I couldn’t complain either!!

In the end, the Key West Key Lime Pie Company was the clear winner.  It was so creamy, well balanced, and had a wonderful graham cracker crust.  It also happened to win Bobby Flay’s Throwdown, which is awesome (Neal has a man crush on Bobby Flay).

Neal and I had a blast conducting our second anniversary throwdown and I can’t wait to see where year 3 takes us.

Extreme Weight Loss

Tonight, ABC aired the show Extreme Makeover Weight Loss Edition.  I wasn’t sure what to expect but based on the previews, here is what I expected to see…

1.  One contestant per episode

2.  Each contestant has a couple hundred pounds to lose

3.  Each contestant will be under the supervision of trainer, Chris Powell

4.  Each episode will show the contestant over 1 year (365 days)

5.  An extreme transformation

Trainer: Chris Powell

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