A blog about happiness and healthy living...

Monday, January 7, 2013

3 Silly Things That Keep Me Motivated To Work Out

Funny story…

I was planning on doing this post about things that give me an extra boost of motivation to workout which in itself motivated me to kick butt at the gym last night. I did some really intense intervals on the treadmill. In the past intervals have really helped me with increasing my running speed, which is something I have recently wanted to focus on again.

Then maybe five minutes after getting home I RAMMED my knee into the corner of my coffee table. And I mean RAMMED. Luckily I could bend it after a while and nothing felt like it snapped (which honestly surprised me because I RAMMED it) but that sucker swelled up like a balloon. Nothing some frozen veggies couldn’t fix, but just enough to keep me from the gym for a few days. Ugh.

Luckily this morning when I woke up I was pleasantly surprised that it was only a little bit sore and nicely black and blue.

Anyways… onto what I had planned on writing about:

I find with fitness only 10% of the challenge is the actual workouts. The remaining 90% is in keeping motivated.

While I like to think that the elusive concepts of “being healthy” and “taking care of myself”  are my core motivators, I find more times than not it is the little things that keep me enthusiastic about hitting the gym.

Here are three things that have been working like a charm for me lately.

#1 Cute Workout “Stuff”

A sleek new water bottle, some new running shoes with funky laces, or my personal current favorite some super cute sports bras. I got these for Christmas, and yes that top one is indeed SPARKLEY.

#2 A New Playlist

I love having new music to work out to. Putting together a new combo of old favorites or buying a new album always gets me nice and excited. I am a weirdo and typically prefer more easy going calm songs when I am working out over the typical “Eye of the Tiger,” and here are some that I have been loving for the gym:

Near To You, A Fine Frenzy

You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome, Miley Cyrus

Today, Joshua Radin

Your Body Is a Wonderland, John Mayer

#3 Having a treat waiting at home for me

It is no secret that I love tea J So a big glass of iced tea is the perfect thing for me when I am done sweating. I have been brewing some before I leave for the gym to pop into the fridge so that it is nice and cold when I get back. It gives me a tangible short term sense of accomplishment for working out which is always a great motivator.




What silly little things keep you motivated to work out?

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Gingerbread Pancakes

Hello all. I hope everyone had a good weekend. This is a new recipe I tried on Saturday morning for gingerbread pancakes that I figured I would share because it was so so delicious.

This recipe has no butter or oil in it and it still manages to taste nice and rich thanks to the molasses and Greek yogurt.

1 ½ cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 egg

1 ¼ cups milk

¼ cup molasses

2 tablespoons Greek yogurt

These amounts will make you around 8 pancakes depending on how large you make them.

Combine all the dry ingredients in a small mixing bowl, and combine the wet ingredients into a large mixing bowl . Add dry ingredients little by little into the wet.

The batter smells absolutely HEAVENLY even before it is cooked.

Set your burner to medium heat to cook these. It took me a few tries to get the cooking quite right but just keep in mind that these are quite dense pancakes so they need to be cooked long enough to get the centers fully cooked. However, the heat needs to be gentle enough so as not to burn the outside.

I ate mine plain with some fresh strawberries on the side and it was delicious that way, but the gingerbread flavor in this is mild enough that syrup or peanut butter would be yummy on top. I also think for a treat mixing in some semi-sweet chocolate chips would be delish.

Once again, I hope everyone had a great weekend and is enjoying the New Year thus far!


Friday, January 4, 2013

Five Friday Favorites 1/4

After Eight Mints
I mentioned these in my last post, and I’ll mention them again. Yep. They really are THAT good. They are dark chocolate and mint and are perfect for when I am craving something sweet.

My Fish Cup

This I bought for Michael for Christmas because I wanted it. I think this is hysterical. The only kicker is when I drink anthing besides plain old water the fish look like they are swimming in a very dirty tank.

Jasmine Tropica Tea Blend

Aka: The perfect thing to drink out of my fish cup. This is a Teavana tea that I got during their after Christmas Sale in a set. It is easily my favorite of them. It smells like a sweat perfume and has a really light fruity taste. I used to prefer my Candy Cane Lane tea hands down to everything and thought I would never find another love… but this stuff is so nice.


Aveeno Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturizer

I have really sensitive dry skin that the cold New England winter weather takes a beating on each year. This stuff really does the trick for me. No flakey skin here! An added bonus is that it has spf built right into it. Usually facial lotions with sunscreen in them get really greasy but that is not the case with this one. Oh, and it is all natural.


I find writing to be a fantastic release for difficult emotions. It is really satisfying to spill them onto the page and then have the ability to shut the journal and walk away. I used to not “know” how to journal. I would start and then stop because I felt like I was doing it “wrong” or it would simply turn into a list of things that I did each day. I find it much easier to go into it answering the question “How do I feel?” That is my magic question that makes me write and write and write. I could probably go all day long if I let myself.


I hope everyone had a good week, and has an even better weekend!


What are some of your favorite things lately?
Any fun weekend plans?

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Curbing My Nighttime Cravings

Hey, remember how my New Year’s resolution was to cook from home more often?

Well tonight I burned my mixing spoon because I left it on the stove top over a burner on high. Oopsies.

So far this is going well…

Anyway, I have mentioned before that I am a horrible night snacker. I will do really well all day, and then boom, come eight o’clock it is time for nachos and popcorn galore. Ok, not every night, but it is definitely a habit of mine that I am trying to keep under control. Here are a couple things that have been working for me:
Fresh Fruit

If I am going to snack at night, at least it can be something healthy that isn’t too heavy in my belly. I buy the pre-cut fruit salad from the grocery store because it makes it more “snackable” to me. It is easy to grab and eat and I know myself well enough to say that I will always pick fresh fruit over junk food so long as there is no extra work for me.

These Yummy Mints

I had never heard of these until recently, but there are basically a slim square shaped York. I love anything mint so one of these guys satisfies my sweet tooth perfectly. Just enough to hit the craving J



For Christmas one of my presents was a tea maker and I have been LOVING it. I found a few delicious fruity blends, like this pineapple one from Teavana, that have been great. Tea is my choice night time drink because it is nice and light.

Philosophy Soaps

And when all else fails...I love these because they come in so many delicious dessert flavors and are a completely guilt-free way of indulging. Seriously, they smell just like what they say they will. They are expensive for body wash in my opinion, but I find that TJ Maxx carries them all the time at good discounts so that’s where I get mine.

And that’s everything!

I hope 2013 is serving everyone well thus far and only continues to get better J


Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year's Eve

I had a quaint night in for New Year's Eve this year. Michael picked up a TON of stuff from the dollar store like noise makers and confetti guns and we ate ice cream and cupcakes. Michael's parent's dog, Jamie, also spent the evening with us. We made sure she had fun.

Here are some photos from the night:

(2013 is VERY exciting)

I hope everyone enjoyed their New Year's Eve!