How to pick the best bread choice


I only eat Ezekiel bread, it's made with no flour, no refined sugar, no preservatives (so you'll find it in your grocery's freezer). What it does have going for it is that it's a complete protein because it's made from a special blend of grains and legumes, contains 18 amino acids and is high in fiber. I like the cinnamon raisin flavor which surprisingly doesn't need butter to be enjoyed, the raisins make it moist enough. Or sometimes I'll put a little Trader Joe's apple/pumpkin/cranberry butter on it. The best part is if you read the label, you can identify every ingredient which is important if you're trying to eat clean.
Organic Sprouted Wheat, Filtered Water, Organic Raisins, Organic Sprouted Barley, Organic Sprouted Millet, Organic Malted Barley, Organic Sprouted Lentils, Organic Sprouted Soybeans, Organic Sprouted Spelt, Fresh Yeast, Organic Wheat Gluten, Sea Salt, Organic Cinnamon

They also have a full line of gluten free breads to choose from! 
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Men - meet your new shirt

I got a comment that my blog is just for women so I wanted to post a couple items that make men look incredible at the gym. The thing you should know about lululemon is that they basically keep the same model style but release new colors every few months, so just remember the name of the product you like and keep checking back for new colors. Lululemon is a bit pricey, but the quality of their fabrics really makes it worth it! Sure these items come in basic black and blue, but pick some fun spring/summery colors!

I think this is a great style shirt to train in and looks sexy on men! The Metal Vent Tech Sleeveless is made with moisture-wicking, anti-stink material. The reviews affirm that by saying, "this is a superior product that lives up to all expectations." It comes in 7 colors so it should definitely become a staple in your wardrobe! Definitely try the shirt on first as it seems to run large in sizing. For best care, hang it to dry in the shower, don't put it in the dryer, it shouldn't take more than 20 min for it to air dry.

The Pace Breaker Short is one of their best selling models. It comes in 4 colors. They're a lightweight stretchy fabric with an athletic fit. It features built in boxer brief liner to keep everything in place. It also has a drawstring waist, 2 deep side pockets, and one zippered pocket at the bottom of the shorts - how awesome is that! The 9" length is so perfect for a sporty and functional look. 

Always check out their sale section which has very limited inventory and everything does not end up there, but sometimes you can get a nice treat. 

If you're looking for an armband for your iphone check out this one that fits the bare iPhone 4/4S or this one that fits the Otterbox iPhone 5. 

If you're looking for the best post workout drink to help build your muscles check out this post.



All About Aqua

J.Crew's bubble necklace seems to be the most popular item they've made! I bought mine a few years ago but since then so many copycat artists are making them at a fraction of the cost!

What I'm most excited about to share is these Aqua Spritz shorts I purchased when the LOFT was having a sale. Drum roll please ..... I put on my first pair of size 2 shorts!!!!! Course I had to check the inside label to see if perhaps the outside price tag label was mistakenly placed on the wrong sized shorts, but no! Hopefully these aren't just a rogue sized pair of shorts, but either way I'll take it! It was super exciting for me considering I used to be a size 14! Never in my wildest dreams I could ever imagine being a size 2! Would it be wrong of me to keep the tag on so everyone can see the size?! lol
Loft in blue



Meatless tacos



I served this for a meat eating friend and she said she couldn't tell the difference that there was no meat in it, she said the texture was similar to beef but the taste was lighter like ground turkey. Best of all this has 0 cholesterol! There are a couple brands that make a "meatless ground" product, but I prefer the taste of Yves. Yves does make another meatless ground with the name "taco stuffers" which I don't care for because they over spice it. This is super simple to make, there's not even a recipe. Just fry it up in the pan, add additional seasonings if desired (though not necessary with Yves), then pour into taco shells and top with your favorite toppings. I served it with a side of chayote (Latin American pear squash).

Clean Taco Seasoning, this makes 5 servings, you only need one serving for this package.

2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon chili powder



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Benefits of water


If you want to lose weight then you must drink a lot of water each and everyday and no soda or juice. Water plays an important role not only in our hydration but also for maintaining a healthy weight. Always drink before you eat because we often mistake hunger for thirst so your body may just be thirsty and not hungry; and it will help you reduce the amount of food you eat. Drink water as soon as you wake up to kick your metabolism in gear. Drinking water speeds up your metabolism and if you don't drink enough water your body actually holds onto water weight.

Water helps your kidney and liver function more efficiently to flush out waste.  Water helps energize muscles so that they perform better and keeps your skin looking good. Drinking water regularly suppresses your appetite. Regular intake of water increases your metabolic rate and improves your digestive system. Try to get in 8 glasses of water a day and if you can't keep track download an app!

Waterlogged is a free iphone app, but in-app purchases ($2 per year or $3 forever) buy you no ads, with unlimited reminders, and detailed tracking drinking graphs. It will also let you set reminders so you don't go too long without something to drink.
Water Your Body is a google app that allows you to schedule reminders during the day so that when it's time for a drink, there is a  water pouring sound effect from your phone!

Tracking is really easy because every time you drink a (partial) glass or bottle of water you can just choose it from a list (completely with photos, if you add them) and it will be added to your tally.
This is my water bottle at work, it's a Tervis Tumbler, I put it in the fridge when I leave the office so that my first glass of water  in the morning is super cold.

If you need flavored water trying squeezing lemons into an ice cube tray so you can easily pop them into your water! My favorite flavored water is cucumber water!

Cucumber Water Recipe 

Ingredients
1 cucumber
3 gallons water
ice

Directions
Slice cucumber into thin slices. Place in a beverage dispenser and fill half way with water. Let the cucumber perfume the water for an hour then fill with ice and serve.




A friend of mine flavors her water with lavender! She puts fresh lavender in boiled water and lets it steep for hours before putting it in the fridge.


Awesome Zoya deal!



If you've been wanting to try out Zoya nail polish, they are offering them at half price for a limited time!
Zoya is helping you do a little spring cleaning with the return of the Earth Day Zoya Nail Polish Exchange* for 2013. Clean out your nail polish wardrobe and get rid of old nail polish that may not be BIG5FREE (Free of Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin, Toluene, DBP and Camphor) and exchange it for a greener alternative. 
To clarify the exchange: You do not have to send us the exact amount of bottles that you are ordering. You can send any quantity up to that amount. You can also donate. If you decide you don't want to do either, it's ok "Offer is not contingent on customer returning polish" we will still love you and will send the Zoya polishes... we'll just send you on a guilt trip for a while :)

Green cleaning products

I've  been into green cleaning products for awhile now for my home.  But then I read an article in Allure magazine last year with an interview with a hand model who said she brought her own hand soap into public bathrooms to not damage her nails, that's when I made the switch to natural hand soap as well. I use both Method  and Mrs Meyers hand soaps and household cleaners. Both are ammonia and bleach free cleaners, do not contain  petroleum distillates, made of plant based solvents and not tested on animals. I used to work at a yoga studio and the first thing I suggested to them was to switch to natural cleaners. I thought they shouldn't use windex on the mirrors because when you spray the toxic chemicals on the mirror it hits you back in the face and no one should be breathing that or risk getting it in their eyes.

This weekend Mrs Meyers is offering free shipping in honor of Earth Day!  In December I used their pine scent since its Christmasy and my other favorite is geranium scent, the essential oil is very strong but amazing! This week's Target ad is having a sale on Method cleaning products.

Method's stylish bottles are made from 100% recyclable material and you can find it at Target, Safeway & Whole Foods. I really like their bathroom cleaning products and wood floor cleaner. Many of their products come in refill pouches so you can save on plastic. And they disclose all of their ingredients which many products claiming to be "green" do not.

How to eat healthy at ihop

With the weekend approaching, let's talk about what you should eat if you end up at ihop at 3am. Did you know the Original Stack of buttermilk pancakes has 880 calories and 50 grams of fat?! The Harvest Grain ‘N Nut pancakes has even more! All the entree salads have upwards of 800 calories, the crepes are 1200 calories and the Crispy Chicken Strips are 1800 calories!

Choose from their Simple and Fit menu which have under 600 calories and be picky!  Ask them to hold the butter, hold the cheese or ask for less, ask for dressings on the side, ask for egg whites, and they have sugar free syrup! The omletes are your best bet for low cal coming in at 320-420 calories. The Two x Two x Two combo gives you one of everything for 400 calories however it does have 1,450mg sodium. The fruit crepes on the Simple and Fit Menu are 580 calories with 24g fat, so be sure to skip that! The Simple & Fit Whole Wheat pancakes have more fat than the S&F buttermilk pancakes. I would stay away from the S&F Turkey Bacon Omelette which is still pretty high in fat and the S&F Blueberry Harvest Grain 'N Nut Combo which is 560 cal. All of the pancake platters at IHOP are pretty high in sodium.

In short try not to eat your entire plate or split your plate with someone.

While turkey bacon definitely contains less fat and sodium than regular pork bacon, this does not mean it is a healthy food. It is a bit healthier, but both types of bacon are processed meats that are cured with sodium nitrate. A study performed by the American Institute for Cancer Research clearly showed that regularly eating processed meats containing sodium nitrates, including turkey bacon and regular bacon, increases the risk of developing certain cancers. Turkey bacon and regular bacon are best enjoyed occasionally, and should not be part of your everyday diet. - Livestrong
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Results and Recovery Formula

If you're doing a hard core workout like Insanity, P90X, Turbofire, etc. have you tried Results and Recovery Formula? I'm not kidding this stuff is awesome and tastes great in an orange cream flavor! It will help to reduce muscle soreness and replace what electrolytes you lost during an intense workout. Studies have shown that this one hour "window of opportunity" is the key to muscle recovery. With the right balance of nutrients you can improve your body's ability to recover by 100%!  The product comes in single packets of powder which you simply mix with water, no blender needed. It provides all of the nutrients that your body needs to recover quickly after intense workouts so that you’ll maximize the benefits gained from any workout by helping your body rebuild, recover, and refuel. And if you're still thinking why bother with a recovery drink, here's the technical breakdown of why it's important:
The goal of post-exercise nutrition is to replenish the glycogen stores and to encourage protein synthesis. Carbohydrates are the body’s main source of glucose, the molecule used to build glycogen. By ingesting carbohydrates, you rapidly replenish your glycogen stores. This is important because consistently low glycogen stores lead to a breakdown of muscle protein and a loss of muscle mass. Carbohydrates increase the body’s insulin concentration. Insulin is essential for glycogen and protein synthesis. Carbohydrates also promote the release of growth hormone, which promotes protein synthesis, which in turn leads to increased muscle mass. Finally, carbohydrates decrease cortisol concentration. Cortisol, also known as a “stress hormone,” is released in response to both physical and psychological stress. During a workout, cortisol levels are increased, causing muscle protein to break down. - Dr. Seaton
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Hate running? Well walking is all sorts of good for you!


I've never been much of a runner, at least not outdoors, just occasionally on the treadmill. I'm a city girl, so I grew up walking everywhere and my parents are big walkers as well. This article says that "a brisk walk may be just as good as a run for keeping the the heart healthy." So for those who think they’re out of luck because they can’t run or don’t want to run, you don’t have to! Plus with walking the risk of me getting an injury is much lower.

Pears



I feel like pears are a neglected fruit, do you eat them? But I do think pears are gaining in popularity, I see pear martinis and even pear applesauce. Pears are a great snack because they are low in sugar and high in fiber. I feel so full after eating a pear because of all that fiber!

Pears contain Vitamins A, C, K, B2, B3, B6, folate, calcium, magnesium, potassium, copper, and manganese. The flesh of the pear contains many nutrients such as antioxidants, anti-inflammatory flavonoids, and potentially anti-cancer phytonutrients (lowering the risk of gastric and esophageal cancers). Flavonoids help improve insulin sensitivity which means they can help lower risk of type 2 diabetes. It's easily digestible that's why its recommended as one of the first fruits to give a baby.

When shopping for pears pick ones that are hard so they can ripen at home. You can always throw them in a paper bag to ripen faster. They should be kept on the counter until ripen, then you can keep them in the fridge so they last a few more days. Don't store them next to onions or garlic because they absorb smells easily. Make sure they have space between pears otherwise they ripen too fast.

Every week I always buy berries for breakfast and 5 of one fruit for my afternoon snack at work. This week's fruit selection was pears!


Have you tried Trader Joe's pear tart?
It's absolutely delicious so I had to find a sugar free version and found this recipe that I can't wait to try. In addition to baking pears you can serve them raw by slicing the pear in half, scoop out the core with a melon ball cutter, and put in the center ricotta mixed with a little honey. Or you can slice a pear up and throw it into a spinach salad.

Which is your favorite pear- bosc, anjou, or bartlett?

The Diet Cycle



The truth of the matter is diets don't work, they're temporarily and they are designed to fail. You might have short term losses but not long term. They're simply flawed and all you're doing is hurting your body and metabolism. See this is how it works, you start a new diet, you’re not enjoying the process, it only lasts about 2 weeks until you go out somewhere and say "screw this" and fall off the wagon and then you feel guilty. Am I right? When you're dieting, you have to cut your calories down, so how do you maximize a full day of nutrition now that you've cut your calories down? You don't.You screwed up your metabolism because you keep decreasing your calories so low, you’re also nutritionally void so it makes the whole process harder. It’s the whole lack of energy and cravings that makes diets a repeat business. Did you know that 69% of Americans are overweight and obese? source. Eating Clean is the last "diet" you need to do. You need to say to yourself, no more diets, you are going to change your whole lifestyle and relationship with food.

If you don't eat well or are chronically stressed out, where do you end up, in that 69% statistic worrying about your health in the future. You can boost your longevity by changing what you eat. Yes you have control over what you eat! Do you struggle with feeling tired all the time, do you need caffeine to perk you up, do you have trouble sleeping, well those are all signs of chronic malnutrition/ lack of nutrients. Vegetables are the most nutritional food group, and no eating a side salad of iceberg lettuce (drenched in dressing) is not enough to cover your daily requirements.

My friends know that I've been talking about vitamins for years and how the quality of the vitamin is important. Not all vitamins are the same and unlike with medicine there's no requirements that the label must actually match what's in the pill. See most vitamins don't fully release for absorption into your body plus our body best absorbs nutrients when its a whole food. This lab test found defects in 40% of the multivitamins it tested! It said some of the vitamins had up to 30% less than the advertised amount of a vitamin.  

Shakeology is my new vitamin. The reason why this is better than taking a man made chemical vitamin is because it's all natural and absorbs into your body. In just one drink Shakeology would be like eating 5 salads...amazing right! I have so much energy just by getting the right nutrients everyday! It's a power packed meal with all the vitamins and superfoods that give you energy. You are getting the most bang for your buck with one meal with shakeology! Now Shakeology alone won’t make you lose weight, but it’s the best tool in your toolbelt, making the whole weight loss process easier, if you feel great and those sugar cravings go away, you’ll stick with it.

I’d heard that shakeology takes away sweet cravings and I thought that was crazy, but once I started drinking it daily it really did it for me! I'm no longer eating all the cookies at work. Shakeology isn't just a weight loss drink, yes that's a great perk, along with more energy/stamina, and lowering cholesterol and risk of heart disease, the benefits are endless, but the best reason of all is that Shakeology is the healthiest meal of the day packed with all your essential nutrients and it's all natural! Any product you compare it to you'll see has artificial sugar or other chemicals in it. There's no other shake on the market that is 100% whole foods and 70 ingredients!

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Pretty in Pink

I keep my closet arranged by color and noticed there wasn't much in the pink section. I have a long standing no hot pink policy, I don't wear hot pink colored clothing, lipstick, or nail polish. I love light pink but not all shades are complimentary to my hair color, I usually go with beigey pinks. I stopped by Ann Taylor LOFT and they had ton of light pink stuff! As soon as they have a sale I'm definitely getting the linen shorts! I'm on the fence about the Striped Terry Drawstring Waist Dress, the color is a bit too neon for me.
pinkalicious



In the meantime I just got the sateen Marissa ankle pants which are such a pretty shade of pink, not too pale, and matches my purse and shoes! It also goes with my favorite nail polish color - Zoya Amanda which is more beige than pink but it's perfect with my tan skin tone.
pretty in pink

Target beach towels

Target has beach towels and aren't they cute?! Plus they're all under $15! I will be spending a lot of time by my pool this summer, can't wait for summer! Are you ready for swimsuit season?!

Target beach towels


Shakeology Cost

Starting April 15th I will be hosting a clean eating and Shakeology private online support group. For 30 days I will teach you how to plan out your meals, grocery shop, choose healthy meals and snacks and incorporate Shakeology as one meal a day. I will teach you the basics of proper nutrition, fueling your body for energy and not for comfort and dealing with all the temptations that surround us on a daily basis. All the support and guidance you need to truly make a lifestyle change. Because 80% of your weight loss comes from nutrition, so why waste all those hours in the gym if your nutrition isn't right?  Do you want to make a change? Are you afraid to start? Well this is the perfect place to go! Contact me for details.


If you buy lunch everyday at Cosi, Chipotle, Panera Bread, Corner Bakery, Au Bon Pain, or Pret a Manager you're spending $7.50 on a sandwich or burrito, add on tax and drink you're up to $9 a day! The majority of the foods trucks downtown are $8 a plate and do you know how many calories are in your plate?  Shakeology is a quick and easy way to get all the nutrients you would from a bowl of fruit and vegetables. Perfect for a meal replacement prepared in less than one minute if you're too busy to cook breakfast. Or if you're on the go running errands around town or on a long car trip so you don't have to eat gas station food. For college students its an easy healthy late night snack. It's a great after gym protein shake as it helps increase energy, build and repair muscles, its full of antioxidants and will help you to maintain a healthy weight. It’s high in vitamin C (thanks to the camu camu) and zinc so if you're prone to get sick often shakeology will make your immune system stronger; I rarely get sick. I've also heard from many people that the vitamin content in the shake has helped with their migraines. If used daily for three months its been shown to lower your cholesterol. And it will kill your sweet cravings.

Carl Daikeler, CEO of Beachbody, personally went around all over the world for 70 different ingredients from one lot farmers to make sure the integrity was perfect, not chemically altered, the soil wasn't depleted, and negotiated importing each of them, now that's a lot of work! Its not taking the cheap easy way to make a shake of 70 whole foods vs synthetic chemically manufactured ingredients. There’s not much of a profit margin to the company with shakeology and the science to put it into a bag and keep it fresh is just amazing! It comes in four flavors: Greenberry, Chocolate (whey), Chocolate (vegan) or Tropical (vegan). Beachbody gives 25% discount to active duty military, ask me how to set that up for you.

I’ve been into superfoods for a long time and there's really no other product on the market that compares to its ingredient list which include Brown rice protein, Pea protein, Maca root, Chia, Quinoa, Yacon root, Spirulina, Chlorella, Pomegranate, Goji berry, A├žai, Camu-Camu, Himalayan salt, Strawberry, Banana, Pineapple, Papaya, Green tea, Maitake & Reishi mushrooms (used for centuries for medicinal purposes), Barley grass juice, Kamut grass juice, Spinach, Holy basil, Wheat grass juice (2 oz of wheat grass is equivalent to eating 4 lbs of green vegetables), Ginkgo biloba just to name a few. When you look at all the amazing ingredients Shakeology has you'll see it's more than just a protein shake, its a nutrient bomb in a glass. You can't get all these ingredients from just healthy eating and it blows your regular multi-vitamin out the water!