WHOLE…. 15?

Sooooo I accidentally oopsed on the whole Whole30 thing. (It’s not ALL my fault, I swear!) Long story short is I took a bit of something someone else cooked and tasted cheese and was just like… meh, two weeks was fun and all but I’m over it.

Realistically, the Whole 30 is stupid restrictive. Like, to the point of life no longer being worth living. Don’t get me wrong, it’s awesome as a reset for your body, but eating like this for more than a couple of weeks is just not sustainable. You’ll hate everyone and everything and essentially just be a total grump.

There are some things I really liked about it, though. For one, it was very strict in helping me avoid added/refined sugars. Sugar is a nemesis for pretty much everyone and it’s in freakin’ EVERYTHING, so being strict really helped eliminate sugar from my diet. After the initial sugar detox migraine, I felt really good – less tummy troubles than usual (I have a fairly sensitive digestive system) and no 2:30pm-falling-asleep-at-my-desk sugar crash. It really pointed out for me that I DO have an issue with sugar and, by extension, with dairy. (TRAGIC.) I ate ice cream after the cheese incident because #YOLO and let’s just say I regretted it later. Big time. In the last two days I have kinda been testing things out on myself, and it seems like cheese and yogurt are cool (in that they don’t give me bloating or make me feel ill) but other forms of dairy are not. C’est la vie, I suppose. I also noticed that by about 1.5 weeks in, I didn’t really want to eat sweets anymore. My coworker brought leftover cookies into the office and I was like, nah, I’m good, thanks. Same thing happened a few days later with cake. I think eating like this has given me perspective on what is WORTH cheating for (sooo like cinnamon buns, ice cream, pizza, etc.) and what will just end up being ‘meh’. I realized that I often eat sugar for the sake of it but end up not really enjoying it – so from now on I can be more mindful about my treats and make sure I’m using them for something that I really, really enjoy.

In terms of what I didn’t like about the Whole 30 experience – it’s boring. You have to eat the same thing over and over again because realistically there’s not a whole lot of diversity available. If you’re a person who doesn’t love all veggies, this will be even tougher for you. I think the elimination of grains was what I struggled with most – you don’t realize how much of your diet is made up of grains until you’re not allowed to have them anymore. So many snacks are grain-based. So many side dishes. So much everything. I know I don’t have a gluten intolerance, so this seemed a bit overkill to me. HOWEVER, it did make me realize how many calories tend to accompany grains. By not being able to eat grains, it forced me to attempt to replace those calories with either protein or fruit/veggies, and that’s harder than it seems! I found I was just eating fewer calories and eating MORE food because grains were not included in what I could eat. Going forward, though, I think I might allow myself the inclusion of one kind of grain per day (that means I can eat sushi again, THANK GOODNESS). As it turns out, a lot of grain products contain a lot of added sugar, which is where I think a lot of weight-gain issues come from. So I think by limiting myself to one serving of grains a day and ensuring it’s a type that has little to no added sugar, I’ll be ok.

This is probably a good time to tell you that I’ve decide to continue for the next two weeks with what I will refer to as Whole30-ish. I will add back in a small amount of dairy (like 1/2 to 1 serving at most per day) because I feel like not eating it somehow makes my intolerance worse? Like my body forgets what to do with dairy products? Idk. I’ll also limit myself to one serving of a grain-based product per day, and be chill with legumes. I will also allow myself one ‘cheat’ meal per week where I can eat whatever the heck I want and not give a damn, because maintaining your sanity is important, friends. Other than that, the rules still apply, because I really have seen success with this.

I weighed myself the morning of the slip up and I had shed 10 pounds in 2 weeks, which is pretty nuts. Guys, I cannot stress this enough – I really, really, REALLY think it’s the refined sugar. I’m going to go on a tangent for a second – I’ll probably make this a separate post at some point and I’ll link it here – but there is scientific evidence that sugar is substantially worse for our health and more responsible for weight gain than actual fat is. The whole ‘low fat’ crap is an elaborate conspiracy orchestrated by sugar producers so that people would keep consuming their products. They paid for studies to show that fat was bad and it caught on and we are only now realizing how wrong those (very biased) studies were. This is true, I am making none of this up. Google it. ANYWAY. Refined sugar is bad, and for me anyway, it makes me gain weight like you would not believe. So, buh-bye sugar (except for my one cheat meal per week, ’cause a girl’s gotta live a little).

TL/DR, the Whole 30 is a bit overkill but helpful if you need a reset or if you think you may have a food intolerance. 6/10 would recommend. (Realistically, you could do a 2-week sugar cleanse and get most of the benefits, assuming you aren’t testing for food issues.)

So, do any of you think you’ll give Whole 30 a try? Let me know! (I also have a couple of recipes I can share if you need them!)

 

XO,

J

FRIED POTATOES OF DEATH

Okay guys, so I read something this morning that SHOOK ME TO MY VERY CORE. This headline greeted me this morning:

“Eating fried potatoes linked to higher risk of death, study shows” 

(Apparently regular, non-fried spuds are chill tho.)

And, like, quite frankly, I feel personally victimized by this news.

After thinking about it for a very short period of time, though, this is my reaction:e12

Forget fries before guys…. FRIES BEFORE EVERYTHING!

(I’m obviously kidding… mostly.)

In all seriousness though, people read headlines like this everyday and freak out. One day it’s dairy, the next it’s red meat, the next it’s fries. Clearly we all know that fries aren’t that good for us, and we should definitely not be eating them every day. But most of us sensible humans also know that moderation is key, and that treating ourselves to fries every now and again isn’t going to do us much harm. Scare tactics like this are silly.

There is no reason you can’t enjoy your favourite foods in moderation, even if they are fried potatoes of death.

(I am so sorry – I’m all over the place today with my sense of humour and my posts have been cray at best. I’ll be back to normal after the weekend, promise. 😉 )

XO,

J

THE DEFINITIVE LIST OF ANNOYING FITNESS THINGS

It’s Friday, I’m tired, its been raining all week, I haven’t eaten any bread in 13 WHOLE DAYS …. I think a silly post is in order.

I’m going to list below everything I find annoying about the fitness world. Maybe another day I’ll elaborate on these annoyances… just to be a super irritating complainer. You’re welcome.

THE DEFINITIVE LIST OF ANNOYING FITNESS THINGS.

  1. Attempting to remove/getting stuck in a sweaty sports bra after a particularly strenuous arm workout
    giphy-downsized
  2. People who sit and ‘stretch’ for a million years in the gym (by stretching I mean making use of a smart phone)
  3. Stairs/hills/toilets after leg day
  4. Doing laundry 12 times a week to wash all that workout gear
  5. Salad
  6. People who try to sell you shitty diet pills/wraps/shakes on Instagramgiphy-downsized (5)
  7. People who try to recruit you to pyramid schemes on Instagram
  8. People who really believe they will get rich via the pyramid scheme they joined on Instagram
  9. “Coaches” who have absolutely zero qualifications to give fitness and health advice, but decided to give it anyway… you guessed it – on Instagram!
  10. Really, really, really fit people
  11. Not being able to freely consume pizza whenever and wherever the mood strikesgiphy-downsized (1)
  12. Knowing the exact nutrition facts of what you’re about to consume when you’re treating yourself and feeling tragic about it
  13. People around you who know you’re trying to be healthier constantly commenting on how ‘you look thinner!’ even though you know for sure that you don’t
  14. Coworkers bringing cake/cookies/muffins/snacks into the office and sharing them
  15. Watching your coworkers eat said snack as you cry into your lean protein and veggies, alone at your deskgiphy-downsized (4)
  16. Burpees
  17. Getting hangry when there’s no accessible healthy food in your vicinity
  18. Meal planning
  19. Spending a million dollars at the grocery store every Sunday
  20. Saying to yourself “I feel really lean today!” and then having the scale completely ruin it for yougiphy
  21. Conflicting information (mostly about nutrition but also about exercise)
  22. Fad diets
  23. People who try to convince you to do fad diets
  24. Falling for fad diets and regretting it later
  25. People with naturally fast metabolisms (especially ones who brag about it)
  26. Reading about how your favourite food is apparently now horrible for you (RIP french fries – Fried-Potatoes of Death)
  27. Cardiogiphy-downsized (3)
  28. The price of athletic clothing
  29. The price of a gym membership
  30. Unsolicited advice from LITERALLY EVERY PERSON ON EARTH about losing weight/gaining muscle/ toning up/ etc etc etc
  31. Being so well-hydrated that you have to get up to pee every half hour
  32. People questioning your life choices all the time, and having to constantly justify why you’re doing what you’re doing
  33. Getting up stupidly early to go to the gym before workgiphy-downsized (2)
  34. Feeling like you wasted a day if you haven’t worked out
  35. Forgetting your Fitbit at home and not realizing until you get to the gym (I mean really, what’s even the POINT?)
  36. When your Fitbit decides spontaneously that it no longer wants to record your heart rate in the middle of a workout
  37. Doing something embarrassing in front of everyone at the gym (like the time I almost fell off of a treadmill after dropping my phone #hotmess)giphy (1)
  38. Being the party pooper who always wants to go home early to get those 8 hours of sleep in
  39. Juice cleanses. Actually, all cleanses. (True fact: the only ‘cleanse’ you need is a functioning liver. You’re welcome.)
  40. People who promote detox teas that are really just laxatives. (GROSS.)

Did I miss any? Add yours in a comment and we’ll keep the list going!

(Obviously this is all in good fun and not meant to offend anyone! #jokes We’re all in this together, and sometimes it’s fun to commiserate and make fun of ourselves a little!)

Happy FRI-YAY!!

XO,

J

RESTAURANT/FAST FOOD RAGE

Ok – we all know by now that I love pizza. This is a fact. I’m also a fairly social human who likes to go out for meals and dates with the boyfriend, so I frequent restaurants semi-regularly.

BUT I’M ANGRY.

Why, you ask?

WELL.

(Fasten your seatbelts, this may become a rant veeeery quickly.)

Listen, I understand that restaurants are businesses. To be successful in getting people to buy your food (and keep on buyin’ it), it has to taste good. It has to be an experience that bears repeating. And realistically, the majority of the population doesn’t eat purely for fuel – we’re only human, and we like to enjoy our food! But, as I think I’ve mentioned before, we’ve been entirely let down by our education and our upbringings when it comes to food. Most people are sadly lacking critical information about the importance of proper nutrition, and how to achieve it.

Where is this going, you ask? I’m getting there.

Restaurants have positioned themselves in our society as an option. I know that’s a weird way of phrasing that, but it’s the most accurate way I can think of to describe it. Restaurants and fast food joins market themselves as viable options for people – whether you don’t feel like cooking or don’t have time to cook, it’s totally chill to sub in purchased food.

Well, it’s NOT.

Eating at restaurants is supposed to be a treat. A once-in-a-while occurrence. And this normalization of eating out is quite literally killing us all. (DRAMA!) As mentioned previously, the number one goal of a restaurant is to make it’s food taste amazing. And, as most of us know, amazing-tasting food is often achieved by filling it full of calories, fat, and sugar. And again, this would all be totally FINE if restaurants were positioning themselves as ‘treats’. But instead, we see them as a viable option for ourselves on an every-day basis as we attempt to navigate our busy lives. For example – when I was young, my mom thought very little of feeding my sister and myself fast food once a week or so. We were busy kids and had tons of dance and soccer practices, and we needed something quick. This was back before nutrition information was as readily available as it is now (not that many people really consult it anyway, especially in Canada where we don’t legally have to display it on our menus), and there seemed to be this perception that eating a burger from a fast food restaurant was the same as eating a burger from home. I think this perception still exists.

Those of us who have gone out of our way to inform ourselves about nutrition know the truth. We know that a homemade burger and potato wedges is going to run us about 500 – 600 calories, if we make the appropriate substitutions, whereas a fast food version (or restaurant version, for that matter – restaurants are no better!) is going to be more in the 1200 – 1500 calorie region. In fact, I have STRUGGLED BIG TIME to find a restaurant meal (this is INCLUDING salads, people!) that has less than 500 calories to it. And that’s just icky. Where the hell are they hiding these calories?!

We shouldn’t be in a situation where we go to a restaurant seeking a healthy option and find nothing – or find something that seems healthy but has a million hidden calories/grams of sugar/grams of fat etc. And we also shouldn’t be sitting down to a meal that consists of our ENTIRE calorie budget for the day along with twice the fat. It’s just unethical! It’s no wonder we have a worldwide obesity epidemic. Between the cultural factors (pressure to lead a busy life, socializing over food/drinks, accessibility of restaurant food based on price, etc.) and the lack of wholesome, nutritional food available in restaurants, we’re basically screwed.

For some people, a lot of this doesn’t matter much. It didn’t matter to me, back in the day, when I was young and had a nice, speedy metabolism, and wasn’t working a desk job that kept me immobile in a chair for 8 hours a day. I couldn’t physically SEE the effects of what I was eating, so it didn’t matter – I was free to continue to indulge for the sake of my social life and realistically, for my own enjoyment. I think a lot of people are in this boat – carefree because they don’t physically see the effects of this lifestyle, and are never told that they should be doing anything differently. So many women in my age range can still go out Friday and Saturday nights, drink a bunch, eat fast food on the way home, and maintain their weight. Unluckily (although it’s probably lucky in the long run), I’m not one of those people and I’ve had to face what I’m putting into my body head-on.

I come from the “Lunchable” generation – we ate packaged crap for lunch every day, from Nutri-Grain bars to Fruit Leathers to Gushers to Dunkaroos. Luckily, my mom was both thrifty and somewhat concerned for my health, so she limited my intake of these things. (As a kid, I was SO MAD at my mom for never letting me have Lunchables. But looking back, I’m thanking her! Those things are full of chemicals and sugar and who knows what.) It wasn’t our parents’ fault – they didn’t have access to information that suggested that we should be doing this differently. Now people make fun of millennial parents all the time for sending their kids to school with home-cooked, organic, kale-filled nonsense or for making their own baby food at home, but realistically, they’re doing a much better job of looking out for their kids’ health than previous generations did.

I guess what I’m trying to say is this: unfortunately, for now, it’s up to us to stay informed about our nutrition and make healthy choices, even though they aren’t often the ‘fun’ choices. Calling food manufacturers out on their crap helps, but so long as marketing and mass-production exists, we will continue to experience this problem. Avoiding processed/packaged/purchased (meaning restaurant/fast food) items is really the only way to truly know what you’re eating. I’m not saying we should forgo delicious restaurants altogether – we just need to treat them as the ‘treats’ they are, and limit them to once a month or so.

Phew… glad I could get all that off my chest. Sorry for the Wednesday rant!

 

xo,

J

A WHOLE DANG WEEK OF WHOLE 30

I’m over a week into this.

I know, whaaaat? How am I doing this? Even I have no idea.

But today is day 9 of 30 (oh my god 21 days still seems like such a long time help) and I’m still here. So far, I’m down over 6 pounds – and that’s with very little exercise. (I gave myself a break the first week to let my body adjust to the lack of sugar/carbs before attempting any truly difficult workouts.) I did hit up spin class on Saturday morning, and while I very nearly died (just kidding… mostly) I felt pretty good!

I’m going to see Wonder Woman tonight (FINALLY) so send me all your positive vibes so that I’ll be strong enough to avoid the beautiful, buttery popcorn.

Also – I’m feeling like I’m going to have to implement some kind of reward system in order to keep up with this, so leave me any great ideas you’ve got for non-food-based rewards. I’m thinking at the end of this week, I deserve a mani-pedi… am I right?

Hope you’re all surviving and thriving this Monday morning!

 

xo,

J

WHOLE 30 – DAY 4 UPDATE

Don’t worry guys and gals… this is not a post about how I’ve already failed. (I know, I’m as surprised as you are!)

I’m actually just here to say – so far, so good! My sugar-deprivation migraine only really lasted one afternoon, and now I’m smooth sailing.

I’ve been eating about 1400 calories a day – as it turns out, it’s kinda hard to eat more than that when basically all you eat is veggies. Complex carbs are bae, don’t get me wrong, but they’re also hella caloric. If it wasn’t for the meat I’m eating I would neeeever meet my calorie goals.

Also, thank goodness for fruit. I know, I know, you’re not supposed to rely on fruit to help you get through the sugar cravings. You’re not supposed to rely on Larabars or RX bars to get you through. (Even though they are Whole30 approved… MAKE UP YOUR MIND, WHOLE30.) Honestly though I dgaf and I’m eating them anyway. I’ve been keeping it to 2-3 servings of fruit a day and only 1 Larabar, so it’s not like they’re EVERYTHING I’m eating. Sometimes you just need something different to break up the monotony of meat, eggs, and veggies, kay? I NEED DIS.

In other news, my coworkers think I’m insane and I’m pretty sure the boyfriend does too (although he really liked a couple of the meals I’ve cooked for him that were Whole30-approved!) but I’m surviving!

I’m also breaking another rule by weighing myself every couple of days, because I’m a rebel. And also I need the motivation that results from losing weight because otherwise I’ll say screw it and head to my nearest Dairy Queen ASAP. (I’m kidding… mostly.) So in the spirit of that.. I’ve lost 4 pounds! Yay!

I’ll keep you all posted, but so far Whole30 is not too shabby. And my wallet is really happy too, considering I have not been buying any food while at work.

 

xo,

J

MY WHOLE 30 ADVENTURE

Hey friends! If you haven’t yet heard of Whole 30…. well, you’re about to.

Whole 30 is a suuuuper paired down eating plan designed to reduce inflammation and irritation as a result of what you’re eating. For me, it is basically an exercise in sugar detoxification. My birthday was last week and as usual, I got a little overzealous with the whole celebrating thing, and my eating went down the toilet. It was a glorious, glorious week of pie, ice cream, pizza, and pasta…. but as per usual for me, once I spiral a bit I REALLY spiral. So Whole 30 is my way of reigning myself back in a bit and focusing on nutrition. The idea is that you eat very carefully but very simply for 30 days, and once that time is up start reintroducing food groups one at a time to see how your body reacts. The Whole 30 no-no groups are, loosely categorized:

  • Grains. (This includes oatmeal (sadface), bread (NOOOOO), and even quinoa and brown rice.)
  • Legumes. (Including beans (so long to my fav clean recipe, turkey chili), chickpeas (hummus! waaaaaah), and soy.)
  • Dairy. (We have a love-hate relationship already so I can kiiiinda live with this one. Coconut milk is bae.)
  • Added sugar. (It’s in everything. Seriously.)

And that’s it! So basically I can eat veggies, lean protein, and fruit. That’s it, that’s all, folks! I started yesterday, June 4th, and h’oh boy. I have done a sugar detox before, which is precisely why I decided to start this on a Sunday. I anticipated a migraine and I was correct! I spent allllll afternoon yesterday on the couch with my head feeling like it was being split open by a meat cleaver. (Gilmore Girls was some comfort, but being allowed to eat sugar probably would’ve been better.) There came a point at which I wanted to eat a cookie – not because I actually wanted the cookie itself, but because I knew eating sugar would make my headache go away. (I even had some grapes to try to help the situation, and they didn’t do the trick. Refined sugar is a hell of a drug.) If you don’t believe that a sugar addiction is real, try a sugar detox. It will make you a believer, my friend. (And like, not in a good way.)

The good news is that I feel like a new woman after having my coffee this morning. I’m hydrated, I’m not crazy hungry, and my headache is gone! I’m also less bloated than I’ve been in weeks.

So essentially you can all start taking bets on how long I’ll make it. I feel like if I can keep this up for 30 days, I can probably do anything, so we’ll see. Maybe I’ll be Wonder Woman by the end of this? Or at least be as fit as she is? A girl can dream.

At the end of the 30 days I’ll be reintroducing foods, probably starting with grains because I love them and they are wonderful, and then moving through all of the food groups. My hope is that I’ll be able to keep away from the refined sugars for the most part, as I find my overall health is waaaaay better when I’m not eating them. Once the sugar addiction is broken I find it’s actually pretty easy to stay away – things start tasting sooo sweet when all you’ve been eating is fruit for sweetness. I don’t believe in long-term restrictive diets, as I’ve made very clear, so this is purely a reset to curb my sugar issues, not a long-term plan. NOBODY SHOULD BE FORCED TO LIVE WITHOUT BREAD, OKAY? (Sorry celiacs 😦 )

Anyways, that’s that. I’ve weighed myself before starting, as well as taken some pictures for reference, and we’ll see what magic the Whole 30 has in store for me over the next month! People say it’s life changing and that they feel great afterwards…. so we’ll see if it lives up to the hype.

For now, the countdown is on. Day 2/30.

 

Send me good vibes, peeps!

 

XO,

J

GREEK PASTA SALAD

Sorry, low-carb peeps. This is not the recipe for you. I mean, honestly speaking, this is probably not the blog for you. I love carbs and I don’t care who knows it! I’ve found that my body also responds really well to carbs, so I’m embracing the heck out of it.

This pasta salad is super easy, super simple, and is perfect as a take-to-work lunch. As usual, it’s one of those things that I kinda just throw together, so forgive me if the measurements are a bit off. (Realistically I probably wouldn’t have posted this recipe if someone hadn’t asked me for it!)

So here we go!

unnamed

Greek Pasta Salad

Ingredients:

1 – 2 large tomatoes, diced

1 small cucumber, diced

1/4 of a red onion, diced

1 Cup Whole wheat fusili pasta (cooked)

1/4 Cup crumbled light feta cheese

(You could add olives or green bell peppers if you like those things – they’re not my favourite so I leave them out!)

Dressing:

1 tsp vinegar (or red wine vinegar, if you have it)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp lemon juice

1 tsp red wine (if you don’t have red wine vinegar)

1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar

1/2 tsp oregano

1 clove of garlic, crushed

salt + pepper, to taste

Chop up all the veggies and throw them in a bowl together. Then, mix the ingredients for the dressing thoroughly (it takes some doing because of the whole oil/vinegar thing) and pour over the salad.

It will keep nicely for a couple of days in the fridge, so you can make a big batch ahead of time for meal prep and have your lunch sorted out for a few days! The whole thing is really quick and easy, and it’s a deeeeelicious way to get some of your veggies in. I’m not really too much of a salad lover, but dang I love me some Greek salad.

xo,

J

THE GREAT PEANUT BUTTER DILEMMA

It’s a fact: fitness people love peanut butter. It’s everywhere, in everything, with people professing their pb love all over the place.

What’s also interesting is how this food has gained a reputation as a ‘healthy’ indulgence. I’ll see Instagram photos of apple slices and some JIF peanut butter tagged with #healthysnack on the daily, and it really made me think about which food we perceive to be ‘healthy’ and whether or not that perception is accurate.

Because here’s the thing: peanut butter is a landmine. We keep hearing that nut butters are wonderful and healthy, but there are some major stipulations to that assertion. I’m going to ruin your life by throwing some of them down below.

First of all, when people refer to healthy nut butters, they mean natural ones. So that’s an almond butter without any additives (literally just ground up almonds) or all natural peanut butter. ‘Peanut butter’ like Kraft, Jif, or Skippy DO NOT FALL INTO THIS CATEGORY!! Check out the label for Kraft smooth peanut butter below:

kraft-creamy-pb

Just looooook at all of those added oils and sugars. Not. Healthy.

The second thing to consider is serving size. Most of us could go to town on a spoonful or five of peanut butter, thinking we’re giving ourselves a healthy treat. Well, friends, you gotta slow your roll. Most natural peanut butters have a serving size of 1-2 tablespoons. And in that 1-2 tablespoons, you can expect to eat over 100 calories along with a significant portion of your daily fat. (It’s healthier fat, but still, it’s fat.) It’s incredibly easy to accidentally eat 350 calories worth of peanut butter without noticing – and it’s little things like this that sabotage weight loss efforts.

Nuts are wonderful things to incorporate into your diet – they are super rich in nutrients and are very filling – but sticking to the serving size (10 almonds. 10 ALMONDS IS ONE SERVING. JUST LET THAT SINK IN.) is critical to ensure that you’re not over-eating and ingesting a bunch of extra fat and calories. The unfortunate thing is that many people aren’t aware of this.

I see the same thing happening with other foods that have earned the ‘healthy’ label. People mindlessly eat them, assuming that since they are ‘healthy’ they won’t cause them to gain weight and they can’t be bad for you. Even with nutrient-rich items, moderation is absolutely key. (I’m lookin’ at you, avocado. Seriously, google how many calories/how much fat is in a whole avocado. Do it. I’m ruining your life again.) Sorry dudes, but literally the only thing you can eat endlessly and with reckless abandon is green veggies. It sucks, I know.

Most people also don’t think critically about the food they’re eating. We are trusting by nature, and so we assume that when a product is marketed to us as being ‘healthy’, it must be true. Unfortunately, it’s usually not true. Company marketing departments everywhere are fully aware of the health trend that we’re seeing around the world as a response to the obesity epidemic. They’re smart – they know that people will be more likely to buy something if it’s shown to be healthy. Brands like Special K, Nutri-Grain, etc. have all positioned themselves in the market as healthy snack alternatives, but in reality, they’re full of processed junk and sugar.

The absolute best thing you can do to fight this is to be aware. Read labels, and look up nutrition information for absolutely everything. If you feel like you need to, measure your food to make sure you’re eating the appropriate serving sizes. You’ll think twice about eating that whole avocado once you know that [spoiler alert] you’re eating 350 calories and about 30 grams of fat. Don’t let the big marketing companies win! You are in charge of your food and your health!

So…. yeah. Sorry to everyone who loves Kraft Smooth PB. 😦 I don’t take pleasure in bursting nutrition bubbles, believe me, but I think stuff like this is super important to share. It has taken me 5 years of my life to learn all of this – so I figure I’ll save you some of the trouble. I promise, natural nut butters are also delicious and satisfying – and you can even make them yourself at home!

Happy Friday everyone!

xo,

J

 

DISNEYLAND FITNESS DISCOVERIES

So I realized – I never really shared about my Disneyland trip!

I was nervous about the trip initially because I associate Disneyland with FOOD. (I mean, and magical childhood wonder, of course.) I always leave trips like this feeling bloated and basically malnourished. Did you know you can’t survive off of churros alone? Shocking, right?

Well anyway… I actually discovered that my Disneyland trip was a lot healthier than I was anticipating, and it made me reflect on some other things in my day to day life. While at Disney, I wore my Fitbit. Since this is a recent purchase, I’ve never been able to see my steps while on vacation before. And like, I knew I was going to be doing a lot of walking, but DAMN! I was consistently walking over 25,000 steps a day (11.5 or more miles!) and burning approximately 4000 – 4500 calories. For reference, on a normal day here at home, I’m lucky if I burn 2700 calories. It really made me think because honestly, I wasn’t really ‘exercising’ – or at least I didn’t think so. I was just walking around the park, standing in line… the usual. But the difference between that and a day at my desk job blew my mind. Suddenly, I was a little less concerned about the extra calories I was eating. (Oh, and I weighed myself post-vacation, and I’ve only gained back 1.5lbs, so I’m pretty proud of myself!)

I’ve often wondered what is causing me to have so much trouble losing weight this time around. After my Disneyland findings, I’m thinking that a large contributor is definitely my desk job. I try my best to get up and walk around as much as possible, but I usually only end the work day with about 4000 steps. Back when I was in great shape before, I was eating similarly and exercising similarly…. BUT I was working in retail. So essentially I was standing and/or walking around for 8 hours a day. And looking at what the standing/walking combo does for the calorie burn, and thus very likely the metabolism… it’s all starting to add up. (Literally.)

Unfortunately, there’s not a whole lot I can do to remedy this situation. I like my job and my career path, so I’m not going to go and change it just for the steps. And there are only so many opportunities for me to get steps in during my workday…. so I guess I’m just going to have to make the most of them.

It just goes to show how much walking and meeting your step goal can affect your calorie burn and your health!

If you need me, I’ll be pacing back and forth in my office, lol.

 

xo,

J