8 Down, 40 To Go!

Last Friday I hiked Mt. Lincoln & Mt. Lafayette with my dad.  It was much more challenging than I think either of us expected.  It was very steep, especially on the way up.  We passed several waterfalls along the way which were beautiful, but not always easy to cross.

Image

We took several short breaks to catch our breath and refuel with gatorade and snacks and eventually made our way up.  Before reaching the peak of Little Haystack we took a short detour to Shining Rock  which we had both read and heard about from others.  It was basically a gigantic rock glistening in the sun along with a nice view.

Image

As we hiked up Haystack I turned back many times to admire the views.  This kept me going as I imagined the top to be even better and it was!  The views from Little Haystack and all along the ridge were incredible!  We lucked out with a perfect day – sunny and clear skies.

Image

After eating our lunch we continued on along the ridge to Mt. Lincoln.  It started off as a pretty flat walk but soon turned out to be similiar to the hike up Little Haystack – lots of rocks and several steep parts.  We took a few short breaks to catch our breath, sip some gatorade, & take pictures.  We took one longer break when I was able to lay down on a giant rock and rest my head on my packs & my Dad sat against the rock.  It was amazing to lay down and stare out at the cloudless skies and what seemed like 100’s of mountains.  Sometimes we rush through life, not paying attention and are too busy to take a minute to stop and really breathe in what’s happening around us.  I’m so grateful that we decided to take this longer break and not rush through the hike.  It was so relaxing and peaceful!

ImageImageImageImage

By the time we got to Mt. Lafayette we were pretty tired.  We took pictures at the sign and were admiring the views at all angles, taking more pictures, re-hydrating, and enjoying ourselves…not paying much attention to the trail sign…and we accidentally continued along the ridge and not down the correct trail.  Dad eventually figured out that we were getting further away from the hut and we turned around to head back toward Lafayette and down toward the hut.  It was very hot as we were completely exposed to the sun from the time we reached Haystack until we were past the Greenleaf Hut.  After checking out the hut, filling up on water, and getting out of the sun for a few minutes we headed back down the mountain.  We were both exhausted, legs shaking, but were determined to get to the truck and even more determined to get to the Woodstock Inn and enjoy a refreshing beverage.  We completed the descent quicker than expected, cleaned up a bit, changed out of our boots, and almost immediately headed to the Inn.   After dinner we headed to camp and neither one of us did much other than to relax at the lake for the remainder of the weekend (even walking was painful!).

Overall, it was a very challenging hike, but well worth it!  I made a great memory with my dad, the views were incredible, and I got back the invigorating rush I’d been missing for so long.  I’m so thankful that my dad suggested this hike.  It was the perfect one to motivate me to continue on with this journey!

Image

Image

Image

Image

Keep on Truckin’

Bad news: I’ve had a few “slip-ups” this week as far as eating healthy goes.

Good news:  I haven’t allowed those slips ups to ruin my entire day or to throw me into a downward spiral of over-eating unhealthy foods at every meal and not exercising.  I have been consistent with working out and it’s finally starting to feel like a routine again.  I’m starting to enjoy heading to the gym and going for runs again and that feels good!

 

Image

 

Do something today to make yourself proud.  Eat a healthy breakfast, go for a long walk, drink a glass of water instead of a can of soda.  Small steps add up and we have to be proud of those small efforts and move past the little mistakes that are going to happen.

 

Image

Happy Easter!

Image

 

We hope you all have a great day with family and friends!  Try to make healthy choices but make sure to enjoy the day.  It’s okay to have a treat every once in a while 🙂

When I’m headed to a gathering I make sure to do a few things in order to help me be successful.  First, I make sure to bring a healthy dish to the party. That way I know that there will be at least one healthy option for me to rely on and to munch on throughout the party.  Today I’m bringing fruit salad to my cousin’s Easter party – one of my favorites!  

Image 

I also eat healthy meals right up until I leave.  Today I’ll be eating my daily oatmeal for breakfast, a protein shake, and two spinach burgers with plain greek yogurt and an ezekiel english muffin.  I never leave the house hungry; that way I don’t arrive at a party starving and surrounded by unhealthy, tempting foods.  I also got up early today so that I’d be able to fit in a run before heading to my cousin’s house.  I know myself and that I will not be motivated or desire going to the gym after traveling and spending the day relaxing with family.  I’ll definitely be enjoying a few goodies today with my family but I’ll be making a more conscious decision than I have in the past to stick to the healthier options and to not go overboard with the treats.

Enjoy your day and be thankful for all that you have: family, friends, health, & happiness.  Happy Easter everyone!

 

We’ve fallen and we WILL get back up!

We have fallen off of the healthy train.  You might be thinking that we haven’t been on that train long enough to fall off already but it happened and we’re being honest.  How did this happen?  

Rachel:  Two weeks ago I was home sick for almost a week with what the doctor called “residual tonsilitis.”  I laid in bed for 5 days eating nothing but popsicles & ice cream and eventually worked my way up to applesauce and saltines.  I didn’t exercise for a week and took it slow the following week.  Then, my best friend came back home last weekend and I decided to allow myself to take it easy as far as diet and exercise were concerned.  Unfortunately, I am now so out of my healthy habits that I’m really struggling to get to the gym and to eat healthy.  I want to keep eating chocolate chip pancakes and bacon for breakfast and to eat 950 calories worth of ice cream every night (yes, I ate that last weekend AFTER eating a cheeseburger, tater tots, and corn for dinner – wops!).  

Ashley:   I started playing indoor soccer on Monday evenings and let me tell you I got my butt handed to me.  I felt like a truck hit me afterward. I wasn’t expecting the games to be so intense.  I thought it would just be messing around & having fun. Boy was I wrong!  I pulled my left quad muscle and I didn’t want to hurt myself more, so I thought it would be best to take the week off.  Bad idea!  During that time, I had a friend visit from college and we acted like we were still in college.  While she was here I proceeded to drink heavily and eat heavily.  Once she left I still could not get motivated.  I kept saying tomorrow will be better…I’m going to go back to the gym Wednesday…but I never went and to make matters worse, I was eating like I would never see food again. I will be honest, I’m still struggling to get back on the wagon, but I started at a new gym today which includes a nutrition program.  I will tell you more later, but I am really working hard at getting back at this!

Image

So, what now?  We’ve decided to stop making excuses for ourselves and to get back to how we felt when we started this blog: motivated, happy, healthy, proud, & strong.  We’ve come up with a few ideas to help us get back on the healthy train:

  • Check in with each other every Sunday.  Sunday is our prep day for the week.  We both cook meals in bulk and get our personal things ready for the week ahead.  Bulk cooking and planning is important when it comes to eating healthy.  We’ve decided that on Sundays we’re going to sit down for a few minutes with each other and “check in.”  We’ll talk about how our weeks went, what our workouts included, any struggles we’re having, along with recipes we’re planning to make that day and goals for the following week.
  • Weigh in every Sunday.  We may have different goals but we agree that recording our weight every week will help to keep us on track.
  • Record workouts for the week in a planner.  I used to do this and found that it kept me focused.  I never had to question what I was doing for a workout.  I looked at my planner each morning and all day I knew that after work I would be heading to the gym, hopping on the elliptical for 20 minutes, and then doing strength training for my legs.  If it’s in the planner, it’s happening, no ifs, ands, or buts.  
  • Keep a food journal.  We have both been tracking what we eat in our own food journals, but we haven’t been completely honest with ourselves when writing down what we eat.  We either forget to use our journals and then forget what and when we ate or we don’t record what we’ve eaten because it is so bad.
  • Be committed to our blog.  You may have noticed we’ve gone missing over the past couple of weeks.  Unfortunately, along with losing motivation to continue our healthy lifestyle, we lost the motivation to blog.  Fret no longer!  We’re back on track and plan to each write at least one blog a week.

Image

Lemon Protein Bread

This recipe is from http://www.littlebshealthyhabits.com/.  We’ve mentioned her blog before and we love it!  She has such a delicious variety of recipes and is a relatable girl with great advice!  We make a different version of protein bread each week and her blog is a good resource for trying new recipes!

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cup oat flour + 1/4 cup oat flour

1/2 cup non fat greek yogurt

2 scoops vanilla protein powder

1/4 cup Stevia in the raw

Juice from 2 lemons*

Zest of one lemon*

1 tsp baking soda

4 egg whites

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 cup blueberries

* I didn’t use True Lemon (because I didn’t have any), you can if you want to though just remove the lemon juice and zest*

Glaze: 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder, 1 packet Truvia, 1 tbsp almond milk

Directions:

1. Combine all ingredients except blueberries and additional 1/4c oat flour in mixing bowl and mix well.

2. Pour batter into a prepared loaf pan.

3. Sprinkle blueberries with water then roll in 1/4 cup oat flour until coated. Gently drop blueberries into batter.

4. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

5. In a small bowl mix protein powder and Truvia for glaze. SLOWLY begin to pour in almond milk and mix well until you have a frosting type consistency.

6. Coat top of loaf with glaze while still warm.

 

 

Changes we made:

  • We used 4 True Lemon packets in place of the lemon, which you can find at your local grocery store next to Crystal Light.
  • We didn’t make the glaze and it tasted great..but we bet the glaze would make it amazing!  We’ll try that next time!
  • Ashley had a few raspberries left over so we added those too – delicious!
  • Little Bee’s directions say to sprinkle the blueberries with water and roll them in oat flour…we didn’t do this and all of the blueberries and raspberries sank to the bottom of the loaf.  We learned our lesson and will take the extra 2 minutes to do this next time 🙂

You could also try her lemon raspberry protein bars:

http://www.littlebshealthyhabits.com/2011/11/lemon-raspberry-protein-bars.html