Thursday, 30 May 2013

Guest Post: Gaiam TV

Hello Everyone!

So I am going to take a step back today and let someone else do the blogging. I was contacted my GaiamTV to ask if they could do a guest post on the blog and I thought it was a great idea! Gaiam TV gives you access to tons of videos on topics from fitness and yoga to happiness and relationships. I will be trying out a trial membership with their site (which I sadly have not had the time to take advantage of yet) and I will do a full review post later on with my thoughts on it.

When asked what topic the guest post should be on, I immediately thought of the workout ruts I often get stuck in and suggested writing some information about how to switch up your workout routine, especially during the summer months. So, here are some summer workout tips by Julie Winters, let me know what you guys think!

Tips for Summer-izing Your Workout

Summer is a great time to focus on fitness. Whether you're a diehard exerciser already or you're jumping on the fitness bandwagon for the first time, the warmer weather and longer days of summer can help make your workouts easier and more fun. That, in turn, can help you stick to your fitness regimen and stay motivated to work out.
Summer can bring some challenges to working out, however. Sun, heat and the temptations of the beach or evening happy hours can all shake your resolve. Don't worry; a few tips for summer-izing your workout routine will get you past those obstacles to maximize on the benefits of summer exercise.

Get Outside!

* Try an outdoor sport. This tip is perhaps the most obvious. Summer almost begs you to ditch the indoor treadmills and elliptical machines in favor of fresh air and sunshine. If the warm weather, bright sun and blue sky beckons you, don't skip your usual workout altogether. Instead, lace up your running or walking shoes, dig out those inline skates or round up some friends for beach volleyball or a game of tennis. A bike ride is another fun way to exercise outside. There are many ways to enjoy the outdoors and burn calories, too!

* Be smart about the sun. Depending on where you live, summer may be sweltering. That's no reason to avoid working out. Get creative with your exercise schedule to avoid the hottest part of the day. This may mean getting up early for a sunrise walk or run; alternatively, you could exercise outside in the evening. Even if the sun is still up, its rays won't be as blazing and strong as they are at noon.

* Join a class. If you've been to a gym lately, you may have noticed that outdoor fitness classes are a big trend in the workout world right now. Why not? Many fitness classes are easily conducive to outdoor settings, and a different environment can make exercise more fun. Outdoor yoga, strength training and boot camp-type classes are especially popular when the weather is good. Look for opportunities through local gyms, recreation centers, or start your own.

Combine Summer Fun and Exercise

* Exercise with your friends. One of the best parts of summer is socializing with friends at the beach, by the pool or on the patio. While these social activities are fun and can be a relaxing part of anyone's summer schedule, consider shaking up your socializing by making some of your get-togethers into workout sessions. A good walk-and-talk with friends or run along the beach with a pal can make summer exercise not just healthy but entertaining, too. What a great way to make a summer workout more fun!

* Get competitive--even if it's just with yourself. Have you ever watched a 5K run or charity walk and wondered if you could do that too? Summer is an ideal time to try. Challenge yourself by signing up for a race, charity bike ride or any other fitness event that will get you out in that beautiful summer weather and test your determination. Even if you're only competing with yourself to set a new PR or even just to get to the finish line, a race or ride will challenge your fitness and increase your self-esteem.

Schedule your workouts like social events on the calendar. Schedule them at a time of day that doesn’t conflict with all of the fun summer social activities so you’ll be less likely to ditch your workout in favor of a party. Schedule hikes and outdoor boot camps with friends as you would your social gatherings. If time is short, download a quick workout video online, and squeeze in 30 minutes at home. Many workouts can be done with no equipment and just your own body weight. Something is better than nothing, and eliminating travel time could be the difference between doing a workout and skipping it.

The most important part about working out in summer is simply to be consistent. With the tips above, you'll be inspired to embrace those warm-weather workouts and relish the season while keeping yourself fit and healthy.

Julie Winters is a wellness coach and works with GaiamTV. She likes go change up her own workouts with every season to keep them challenging and different.

I personally have been taking my yoga mat outside on nice days and practicing out there, but I want to try some new workouts just to keep it fun. I would love suggestions!

What are your favourite summer workouts?

How do you switch up your workouts when you start to get bored?

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Little Wins


Well, it seems like every time I say I am going to get back to blogging more often I...well, I don't.

I didn't blog much last week because I was busy and tired from work. I didn't blog on the weekend because I was busy trying to make the most of my time off by filling it with fun and sleep. And I haven't blogged yet this week because...well... I have had a lot of Arrested Development to watch...

I am actually proud of myself for not finishing the whole season in one day, but man is it good (am I right, Alex??). I was fully prepared to be disappointed if it didn't live up to the first 3 seasons, but luckily, it was everything I had hoped it would be.

Something else happened on the weekend that I consider a personal victory.

No, it was not the fact that I initiated yet another froyo trip (although I fully enjoyed that too).

I bought clothes!!! As in, I actually went into stores, tried on clothing in an actual dressing room (with those super flattering lights and mirrors) and felt good enough to make [quite] a few purchases!! This is the first time this has happened in over a year. 

I think the last time I actually bought clothes from a store I was about 20 lbs lighter, so getting ready to stand in front of those dressing room mirrors was not an easy task. However, I grew some balls and did it, and I ended up with some pretty cute outfits in the process. I took pictures of some of my favourites too :)

Now, I still haven't gotten the guts to buy pants (which I desperately need!). That is probably the 2nd scariest activity I can think of (2nd only to bathing suit shopping, eek!). Pants have very specific fits and sizing and I just didn't feel ready this time around. Plus, I was already trying on a million tops, so I didn't want to add more to my plate. 

Pants shopping (specifically for jeans) is something I think I need to reserve a special trip for. Chelsie gave me some great advice that she goes by. She said to take my hip and leg measurements first and then go to a store that sizes it's jeans in inches rather than 0, 2, 4 etc. This way, I am going by my actual size, not the size that I imagine (or wish) myself to be.

Even though I wasn't brave enough to venture past shirts, I am counting this weekend as a small win. I think it is the little wins that lead to real progress. If we are always holding out for big, dramatic victories, we will get frustrated too easily and be more likely to give in to old habits. Besides, lots of little wins add up fast, and I am looking forward to adding to my running total :)

Toodles! xoxo

Do you have any anxiety about buying clothes?

How do you deal with it?

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Ups, Downs, News and Fun

Hello! How are you all?

So, when I said that being done school and working full-time all summer would leave me plenty of time for blogging, I guess I was getting ahead of myself...

Don't get me wrong, my stress levels are lower, but by the time I finish commuting home at the end of the day, I don't seem to have the energy to sit on my butt and blog. I really am going to try to make an effort to blog more though, because I miss you guys!

I thought I would just update you on a few of the goings on in my life. Fun things, not so fun things, progress that I have noticed in the ED department. There is so much to catch up on!

First of all, I need to put in a shameless plug for my brother's band, Inlet Sound. They just came out with a new video and it is their best one yet!

Please watch it, you won't be disappointed!

Work is still great. I am out in the field every day now and I love it. I get to drive around, going to peoples' houses and talking to them about stormwater. It's pretty much the best job I could have right now. Plus, I get to wear this really snazzy fluorescent orange shirt with yellow stripes. I look like a traffic cone (pictures to follow eventually).

I also get to be active everyday, which is great. I am in and out of the car, running all over the city, plus I take the stairs up to my 9th floor office. Booyah!!

Little tidbit for anyone who like Simply Bars. I tried the new Chocolate Mint Simply Whey bar and it is amazing! Try it! Not quite as good as coconut, but nothing can ever be as good as coconut.

I am also loving having new roommates. I still miss a couple of my old ones, but there are a few that I definitely won't miss. I think that living with younger people has restored a little bit of the playfulness I had at the beginning of university. On Sunday night, me and a few of my roommates didn't feel like going downtown (seeing as it would have been the 3rd night in a row), so we decided to stay home and prank our other roommate. That involved writing obscene and/or funny pictures and phrases on about 200 sticky notes and decking out his room. Immature? Yes. Awesome? Definitely.

He should really lock his door...

Although things have mostly been good and I have really been on the right track, there has been the odd thing that sets me back in working through my ED. The last time I had a full-time job, I was restricting like crazy. I used to use the work day as an excuse to eat less, because I could just pack as much food as I was going to allow myself to have and not eat any more than that.

While I am not in the same place I was back then, I have still found myself wondering "how much" food to bring to work with me. If I don't bring enough and I don't have time (or want to spend the money) to go out and get something else, I am way too hungry. In the past, this would have been a convenient way to under-eat, but I am trying to break the association between working full-time and starvation.

There was also an incident in a thrift shop a week or so ago that bummed me out. I had had my eye on this cure lace dress for a while, and I finally decided to go try it on. As I was taking it into the change room, the sales girl said, "Umm, that dress is really small." The tone in here voice included the subtext, "And you are NOT."

This instantly made me very aware of my body and my size. I was determined to try it on anyway, but just as she had predicted, it did not fit. Not only that, but she took the liberty of telling exactly how much too small it was by indicating on my back how far the two zippers were from closing. I took it off and moved on, but everything I tried on after that just looked horrible in my own eyes.

It was a lot like this scene...

This is the kind of situation that could either throw someone into a relapse or make them stronger, and I am choosing the latter. I'm sorry, but when I was able to fit into that dress, I was weak, frail and hungry. I'll take strength over a dress any day.

Despite a few setbacks, I do feel like I am in a better place than I have been in a long time in terms of letting go of the anxiety around food. For example, I would have NEVER bought nuts 6 months ago, but now I always have a container of almonds in my cupboard and I eat them every day.

I have also been the one suggesting treats like froyo.

Recycled picture, but it captures all the deliciousness.

Even when I was starting to eat sugar again, I would only really have something dessert-like if another person offered it to me, and it was generally because I was trying not to be rude. However, lately I have been the one actually initiating trips to Menchies, or voluntarily having a cookie as a snack when they are around the house.

Cyclops cookie. Rawr.

How's that for progress?

Oh, and one more thing...


How do you deal with negative comments?

Favourite AD quote anyone??

Monday, 13 May 2013

Tuesday Fun


I have a few post ideas stewing in the back of my mind at the moment, but today I just felt like doing something fun. This is a survey I saw on a number of blogs a little while ago and I wanted to join in :)

a: age

I'm 22-years-old, and I just read this article telling me that it is the absolute best age to be, so I'm pretty content.

b: bed size

I sleep in a double. As much as I would love to have a queen, I'm a single lady at the moment, so my bed is perfect ;)

c: chore you dislike

Scrubbing the shower. It never gets clean!!

d: dogs

Love 'em. I am and always will be a dog person. Unfortunately, my dog doesn't live with me, but she gets lots of scratches behind the ears when I go to visit my parents.

In exciting news; I just got word that my parents are getting a new puppy!!! She's a little German Shepherd named Abira, or Abby for short (pictures to follow). For anyone who reads Sam, you may have had a similar reaction as me when you saw pictures of her new little squishy-faced stud. I have had puppies on the brain ever since then, so when my parents told me about Abby I almost died. Can't wait to meet her!

e: essential to your day

A good breakfast. Seriously, I don't know how people skip their first meal of the day, but if I don't get something hearty into me in the morning, I'm done for.

f: favourite colour

It's a tie between green and purple. The treehugger in me loves all things green, but sometimes nothing beats a vibrant purple.

One of my favourite t-shirts :)

g: gold or silver

When it comes to jewelry, definitely silver. Not that I own much of the real stuff...

h: height

5'1". Although I sometimes say 5'2" if it works in my favour. I'm probably somewhere in between. Whatever, I'm short, the extra half inch really doesn't make a huge difference.

i: interesting fact

I don't own nail polish. I can't remember the last time I painted my nails. I just really don't care.

j: job title

Usually, I am a student. However, this summer I will be a "Stormwater Inspector." Pretty cool, eh? Eh?? Well, I think it's cool :)

k: kids

No thank you :)

l: live

In Guelph, Ontario. This place has my heart right now.

m: mom's name


n: nicknames

I've never really been a big nickname girl. My parents call me Wev, and I think I mentioned in other posts that they used to call me Sausage. I'm not really eager to bring that one back...

o: overnight hospital stays

I don't think I have had any since I snapped my femur at the age of 2 and had to stay in the hospital for a long time.

p: pet peeves

1. People who walk too slowly on the sidewalk

2. Bottled water - It's EVIL

3. People who preach their own religions for their love and tolerance and then speak out against same-sex marriage. Seriously, it's 2013; homophobia should not exist.

q: quote from a movie

I do love movies, but to be honest, all of the quotes going through my head at the moment are from Arrested Development. I watch that show far too much and ever since I found out that the 4th season is coming out on May 26th, it is all I have been thinking about. Some of my favourite quotes?

Buster: That's what you do when life hands you the chance to be with someone special. You just need to grab that brownish area by its points and don't let go no matter what your mom says.

Lucille: Get me a vodka on the rocks.
Michael: Mom, it's breakfast.
Lucille: And a piece of toast.

Gob: I hear the jury's still out on science.

I apologize to anyone who doesn't watch the show, as those must be going right over your heads, but I know the fellow AD addicts will appreciate them :) After all, "There are dozens of us! DOZENS!"


r: righty or lefty

Righty; boring, I know

s: sibling

One big bro. Best bro ever. We're adorable.

That explains who got all the height...

t: time you wake up

I have always been a naturally early riser who had trouble sleeping in past 8am, even on weekends. However, my sleep schedule tends to be heavily dictated by light, so now that I have lived in a basement for a while, my weekend waking time keeps getting pushed later and later...

u: underwear

My vice. Frilly underwear is the one thing I always buy too much of. I have over 100 pairs; I have a problem.

v: vegetables you don't like

I wouldn't say there are any vegetable I exclusively hate. I can't stand the texture of eggplant, but I can deal with it in certain dishes and I love baba ganoush. I don't do raw onion, but I'm starting to really like it cooked. I hate almost everything containing beets, but then my mum makes this Moroccan pureed beet dish with cumin, cinnamon and a few other ingredients and it has to be one of my favourite things to eat ever! I'll post a recipe eventually.

w: what makes you run late

My bed. Why is it always so warm on the coldest days?

x: x-rays you've had

Probably lots. I can't remember all of them, but my last few have been to check out my spine. I have a mild case of scoliosis and those x-rays are freaky lookin'!!

y: yummy food you make

I always expect that the food I make only tastes good to me, but I know that these babies are palette pleasers for everyone ;)

z: zoo animal favourite

I guess I'll say the monkeys. How can you not love them? They're like little hairy people!

Have a wonderful Tuesday!


Thursday, 9 May 2013

Clearly, I Hate Stir-Fry

I was planning on starting this post by telling you how sore I still was from taking Danielle's bootcamp on Wednesday night, but unfortunately, luck was not on my side that evening.

I had been looking forward to it all day. I took my gym clothes and runners to work with me and everything in case I had to go straight there. Well, I had to make a stop on the way out of town and I ended up getting so lost that it took me an hour and a half to get home! My commute is usually 30 minutes, by the way...

Kitchener has a very confusing system of highways and I ended up on the wrong one multiple times! The whole time I was looking at the clock and swearing like a trucker. I finally made it back to Guelph, but I was way too late. Huge bummer!! This isn't the end though, Danielle gave me the date of the next bootcamp session and I am not going to miss it for anything!


Now, on to the title of this post. You know when you end up eating the same thing multiple times a week and you get totally sick of it? This is not one of those situations... I have been eating the same Asian-style peanut stir-fry what feels like every other day for a year and I love it more and more every time.

It is just so easy, tasty and healthy. It is also incredibly economical and versatile. I put in slightly different ingredients every time and I can just use up whatever I have in the fridge; so convenient! I thought it would be appropriate to share the recipe with you since it seems to be the only thing I eat these days!

Asian-style Peanut Stir-Fry
Serves 1

Ingredients (quantities are approximate, I tend to just throw ingredients into the pan):

Your choice of vegetables (I usually use broccoli slaw or cabbage, mushrooms and zucchini)
Protein (I like using shrimp or tofu)
1 tbs soy sauce 
1/2 tsp garlic powder OR 1 clove of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp sesame oil
2 tbs peanut flour


1. Sauté vegetables in a frying pan with soy sauce, sesame oil and garlic until tender
2. Add protein to the pan and cook for a few minutes (cooking time will vary depending on protein used).

3. In a separate bowl or cup, add water to peanut flour slowly and mix until it reaches a runny consistency
4. Pour peanut flour mixture over the contents of the pan and coat all vegetables and protein evenly
5. Continue to cook until whole mixture thickens
6. Serve over rice, quinoa or enjoy on its own and garnish with sesame seeds or crushed peanuts

You can also use peanut butter in place of peanut flour, but I like using peanut flour because I can control the consistency.

Yeah, I hate this stuff.

Gag me ;)

Have a lovely day everyone. TGIF!


Do you ever make the same thing over and over again and not get sick of it?

Monday, 6 May 2013

Don't Mind the Gap


So, many of you read my rant about instagram a few months back about how there are a lot of negative and disordered messages being spread. A lot of you were particularly appalled to find out that #thighgap was an actual hashtag that lead to a lot of pro-ana/thinspiration images.

This upset me too, as girls and women are being encouraged to strive for an extremely unhealthy indicator of weight on which they base their self-worth.

Let's be honest; which one looks healthier and sexier?
Well, a while back, I stumbled upon a new hashtag that made me very happy. #fuckthighgaps! This was started by Chantal over at Nutty4Nutrition and she totally rocked it.

Lately, I have been paying attention to my own body language and the way I handle my body when I am not comfortable in my own skin. I realized that sometime in the past 6 months, I picked up a really bizarre habit. I find that when I am bumming around my house in shorts, I walk like someone who just got off of a horse, with my legs apart (okay, it's not that bad, but I feel like I look ridiculous). I guess that when my thighs started to become a little meatier, I started walking differently to keep them from rubbing together.

Why did I start doing this?? Maybe I am more influenced by social media perpetuated physical ideals than I thought I was. The fact is, I am never going to have a thigh gap again and I really don't want one! It's not attractive and it's not realistic. Everybody is built differently and some people are more likely to have a thigh gap than others.

But really, why would you strive towards such an insignificant thing? It will not make you happier, your friends will not like you better and men are not going to find you more attractive (it's not the gap between your thighs that they're interested in). The sad thing is that the media has led us to believe that thigh gaps are beautiful and necessary, and so many people fall into that trap.

The photo above really bothered me because the middle picture has so clearly been photoshopped to enhance her thigh gap as though without it she would somehow be inferior.

Not to sound too corny, but girls, it's the size of your brains, your hearts and your smiles that really matters, not the size of your thigh gaps. 

Now, I am off to work, where I will walk like a normal person and my thighs will become friends rather than avoiding each other, I hope you all can happily do the same :)


Sunday, 5 May 2013

MIMM: It's a New Week!

Good Morning Friends,

Well, it's a new week, and for the first time maybe ever I was actually looking forward to going to work on this morning. I love my new job, my coworkers are FANTASTIC and even though I haven't done a lot yet, I am excited for what is to come. So, I thought I would use this post to tell you about some of the other marvelous things that I am thankful for at the moment.

1. I'm feisty and I have proof. I have been told that when I am in the field this summer I will be dealing with A LOT of disgruntled Kitchener residents and I may get yelled at regularly. Apparently, as I was told by the secretary at my office, when they were hiring for my position they chose me over the other applicants because they felt I would be able to handle difficult people better and hold my own. Basically, I came off as a feisty woman whom you would not want to mess with if you were trying to lie on your stormwater credit application. Score 1 for me!

2. I get to meet Danielle of Work It, Wear It, Eat It on Wednesday!! This girl is a fitness machine and she teaches bootcamp classes in my area, so she invited me to be her "friend" for Bring A Friend day on Wednesday. I am fully expecting her to kick my ass, but I am excited regardless :)

3. I found a new consignment store right by my parking garage at work, meaning I have to walk by it twice a day. I finally went in on Friday and it's amazing! They have the greatest little dresses, tops and shoes for really good prices. I decided to restrain myself on my first visit and I only bought a Steve Madden belt, but that place could be very bad for my wallet...

4. I have also been looking for fast/cheap/healthy/delicious lunch places close to my work so that I can walk somewhere quickly when I don't bring anything to eat. I found this great little vegetarian place about 2 blocks away that has really tasty-looking sandwiches, salads, burritos and quesadillas for dirt cheap prices. The decor inside is a little rough around the edges, but I have heard fabulous things about the food, and that's really what matters, right?

I also hope to be frequenting Thrive Juice Bar, where I got this masterpiece a few months ago.

Vegan pad Thai with grilled tempeh. Oh. My. God.

It's a little farther from my work than other places, so I will have to drive there, but trust me, this place is well worth going the distance.

5. Having a reason to get up bright and early and somewhere to go everyday has had a dramatic effect on my mood. I kept saying last semester that I was going through a "funk". That funk lasted for months, and even though I had some good days, what it really was was some form of depression. I didn't feel like I had a reason to get up in the morning, I didn't feel good about myself and I avoided leaving the house when it wasn't absolutely necessary. Well, I can actually say this time that the "funk" is lifting. I feel productive again, my self-esteem is 10 times better and I am enjoying what I am doing. I am so thankful that I am starting to feel like myself again and I hope to keep it this way :)

6. Speaking of self-esteem, I found some new old jeans! I dug up a pair of jeans yesterday that I used to love until that started falling off of me and making my ass look like a saggy pancake. Well, when I tried them on, I was surprised to see that they fit the way jeans are supposed to fit and they hug me in all the right places!

It's like getting new clothes without leaving your house or spending any money and it's a total body image win! It's things like this that reaffirm for me that getting bigger can actually be a good thing.

7. I finally got BlogLovin'! I don't know why I didn't do this a long time ago. I always read blogs by opening a million tabs and trying to multitask while everything loaded.

This is a way better system. I should be a lot more efficient at keeping up with everyone else's blog now.

8. I didn't realize it the other day, but I published my 100th post on Friday, making this post my 101st! I can't believe I have written that many posts; it feels pretty good to have stuck to something for this long, even if I have taken breaks.

I hope you all have a fantastic day!

Have you ever found old clothes that fit you better now than they used to?

Any other consignment/thrift store lover out there? 

Thursday, 2 May 2013

What a Way to Make a Livin'

Hello All!

I have been a little lazy about posting lately, but here I am! I am a full-time working girl now, so no more sleeping in for me :)

So far I really like my new job. I haven't really done much yet. So far there has been a lot of reading documents, signing things and getting acquainted with the people in my office. I probably have a few weeks of this and then I will be out in the field checking that the people of Kitchener are using good management practices :)

The weather has been beautiful for the last few days, so that has been a big plus too. My boss really encourages us to take all of our break, so I have been getting out and walking around in the sun about 3 times a day. It's great!

You know what else is great? My view! I work on the 9th floor and I get a view of the whole city from my desk.

You know what else I did recently?

There aren't as many topping as it looks like. It's a froyo illusion!

That's right, I lost my froyo virginity!

I feel like I see those bowls of self-serve froyo on someone's blog everyday, but I had never had it until a few days ago! Well, Guelph just got a Menchie's and it's my new favourite place. Not really, but I will be hitting it up for a treat every so often.

I have to admit, it exceeded my expectations. I had always thought it was an overpriced fad that was really just a bunch of sugary toppings masquerading as a healthy treat, and while I'm still not convinced that it's in any way healthy, I am convinced that it's delicious. Now I just want to go back to try every flavour... This could take a toll of my wallet.

Lastly, I haven't had a Jones Soda in years, but I found a place that sells the Zilch cream soda kind right near my work and bought one for a cool treat on the way home yesterday. I flipped the lid over to find this little gem...

I hope there is some truth to this. Lottery? True love? Awesome parking space?? Who knows what the future will bring...

Hope lady luck finds you too!