Snaaaaaacks

Hey, I’m Ashley and I love food. This should not come as a surprise to anyone who knows me in real life, follows me on any type of social media, or if you have read any of my other posts.

Crunchy things are my weakness. Ice cream is my soulmate. Pizza is my best friend.

You get the picture, right?

How did the internet get this footage of me?

It’s so easy to sit on the couch and grab a bag of chips or popcorn and just munch away, not worried about portion size or calories. I’m guilty of it, even as I’ve been trying to be on this “healthy lifestyle”. I can often be found sneaky chips and crackers and other delicious things late at night knowing the only person I’m actually hiding from is myself. It’s ridiculous!

Lately I’ve been trying SO HARD to do better with my eating habits. It’s definitely working, but not without a little change in my thinking. This definitely includes snacks.

Instead of grabbing chips or something salty, I’ve been binging on fruits and veggies. Of course, sometimes you need a little bit more to go with those fruits and veggies…because that stuff gets boring real fast.

I’m obsessed with this little cuties. The amount of them I eat might be embarrassing if they weren’t so delicious.

I’ve been toying around with Greek yogurt (yuck) and have found that it’s tolerable when I put a lot of different stuff in it. It might sound crazy, and you’re probably thinking why don’t I just eat stuff I like? Well, I’m trying very hard to stick to my plan, so that means I need to get creative.

These three things and a dash of cinnamon…

…make for a delicious fruit dip!

 

Greek yogurt is a great breakfast food time. Of course, I like to mix in bananas, cocoa powder, and sometimes even a little natural sweetener because it isn’t something I can eat by itself. For veggies, I use the yogurt and a packet of ranch season to make a super light dip. So many things to do with it!

You might be able to guess by now that I also love dips of all kinds. Hummus and carrot sticks, crackers, or cucumbers is always filling… BUT, WAIT.

Did y’all know that chocolate hummus is a thing? Because it is and it ain’t half bad.

Get on this.

These are just a few things that I’m obsessed with right now. Also: mushy bananas because those are the best.

And coffee.

Is coffee a snack?

Anyway, if you have any tips or delicious treats you love, let me know! I’m always on the lookout for new things!

Back to the Grind

Okay. If you read my post about my Princess training fail and now you’re reading this one you might be thinking that I’m really bad at fitness. And commitment. And also staying on track with things.

Well, you’d be totally right about all of that! Life gets busy and I struggle to stay on track. Every. Single. Day. (As I write this I’m eating my last two Tagalongs.)

Health and fitness have been a huge focus in my life for a few years now. It started with healthy eating: changing habits, making better choices, more fruits and veggies. There are those things we should be doing but often forget to do.

I started running when I turned 30. I’d never been very athletic. I played sports when I was a kid but wasn’t very good at it. In high school I joined the cross country team for a season because a friend wanted me to. I hated running, so I’m not really sure why I thought I’d pick it up fifteen years later.

Running led to other fitness endeavors and I found myself in the best shape I’d been in for a long time.

Until lately, that is.

I’ve been on the struggle bus health and fitness wise since about September. Hurricane Irma caused a lot of problems down here in Southwest Florida, and not all of them were from the weather. I’m a nervous/anxious eater. I eat when I’m bored. Y’all. I just love food, okay? Being off of work and worried about friends and family was not good for me. After the storm things just went downhill from there. The holidays came, stress at work comes and goes, and I am just…tired.

Lately I’ve been looking for some motivation. I started a Facebook group with a few friends to keep us accountable for working out and being healthy because I thought it would help me if I were helping others. It worked for a while, but I’ve been slacking on it.

It’s hard to find the motivation to “get up and go” sometimes. Sometimes the couch is just much more fun than going to the gym, or out for a run or walk. Often times it’s easier to make and unhealthy meal choice than to take the time to cook something good and good for you. I’ve even started a Pinterest board to keep track of some at home workouts I can do. I’m really good at Pinning. Not so good at the working out just yet.

Talking to friends, it feels like we’re all in the same boat. We don’t like how we look in photos, how are clothes fit, and why are we so tired? Because we aren’t taking care of our bodies the way we’re supposed to be! Since becoming a Skirt Sports Ambassador I’ve met (online) so many amazing women. I see their posts every single day and I’m always amazing at what people can do. They motivate me each and every day with their pictures, videos, and words. That’s what I need and want. That’s what I hope to do for others one day.

Excuses are easy to come by, too. I’ve just written a ton of them! I’m definitely ready to get back to it, though. A lot of the times I am awed at the things my body can do, but I’m also always looking at ways to better myself- inside and out. As I write this it’s only Tuesday, but I’m feeling pretty good about this week. It’s already a busy one but I’m on track with eating healthy and working out. I mean, a little bit. Rome wasn’t built in a day, okay?

I just really like naps. 

If you have any tips on how to get motivated drop them below or hit me up on Twitter @thisgirlash_!

No Sugar Challenge Giveaway Winners

Our No Sugar Challenge wrapped up on Monday and so many of you participated! To say thanks, we’re announcing the winners of the giveaway.

Congrats to Jessica J., Krystal L., and Amanda G.! They’ll each get a bottle and a box of Tea Sport Keep Fit Green Tea to help keep up the great habits.

Personally speaking, the Challenge was great! For twenty-one days, I didn’t eat any chocolate, candy, or baked goods. For me, this is a big deal. Even my husband was impressed. I only had one serious moment of temptation, which I overcame like a champ.

The first eight days I didn’t have any sugar at all, and it was trying to say the least. After that, I limited myself to having one teaspoon of sugar in one cup of tea a day. I did this so I could remain married and not be kicked out of my parents’ house because I was getting…testy. Overall, this is a decrease in sugar intake of about 90%. I call that success!

The hardest things for me was feeling constantly hungry the first few days and I got tired of only drinking water. Oddly, that wasn’t a problem during the water challenge. What  learned is that I can live without scones and chocolate it’s not as hard or terrible as I thought. I think this will be the start of a less-sugar lifestyle!

 

Did you participate in the Challenge? How did it go for you? Are you doing other things that serve your health this new year? 

Hydration Challenge Wrap-Up

Our hydration challenge wrapped up last Friday, and personally speaking, it was a challenge! While I did get much more water in than usual, I got in my goal amount of 64 ounces less than I wanted, 8 days out of 21.

I averaged about 48 ounces a day, and found that I got bored with plain water pretty quickly. This was the most difficult thing for me. I used herbal and fruit teas to mix it up, but I craved my hot Earl Grey on the cold winter days. I didn’t get to try the fruit infusions like I hoped to, but that’s still something i feel would help me mix  it up in the variety department.

Some of my favorite herbal and fruit flavors. LOVE the Yogi Tea!

The challenge did help me create some new habits and ways of thinking, which in my opinion, makes it a complete success! Those habits include:

  • Being more conscious of keeping my water bottle with me.
  • Drinking less sugary beverages and tea
  • Learning that I need more flavor variety to meet my intake goal
  • Creating a habit of not drinking black tea after mid-morning (a big step for me).

Although I didn’t meet my goal every day, I feel like his was a success because of am drinking far more water than I was before, and overall I’m more conscious of what I’m putting in my body. As they say, perfection is impossible but improvement is success. (Actually, I just made that up, but it *sounds* true).

Time to re-fill!

Next week, I’m kicking off a sugar detox challenge and giveaway. Beginning New Year’s Day, I’m taking on a HUGE goal and attempting to cut sugar from my diet. I’d love it if you joined me! With the start of a new year, we can create new habits to carry with us always.

 

Did you achieve your hydration goals in December? What did you learn in the process? Share your tips and experiences in the comments!

#SugarScoot Sugar Detox & Water Intake Challenge Update

The good news is, I don’t have diabetes. The bad news is my glucose levels are still wonky. It’s time to up my clean eating game by cutting sugar and drinking more water. Are you in?

Guest Post: You Are Full of Power

Several months ago now, I ran a half marathon, and Kyle asked if I would be interested in writing something about my training process. I would sit down and type a little bit, only to feel dissatisfied with what I had written, and ultimately, I never responded to her request. I don’t know what prompted this realization, but this weekend I figured out why I was hiding from expressing my thoughts and feelings.Despite training for and completing the half marathon, over the past year I’ve regained 45 pounds of an 80-pound weight loss, and I have felt like a failure. I have been letting a setback eclipse a huge success. I don’t want to do that anymore. I want to celebrate my victories, and allow them to motivate me to rise up from my setbacks. From a lot of reflection this past weekend about the mental and emotional aspects of health and fitness, here are a few thoughts I want to hold onto, and want to share with others on the journey:

Every person on a health and fitness journey is qualified to be an encourager. My feelings of unworthiness to speak into someone else’s journey are based on a lie – that I have to “get there” before I can be a true encouragement to someone else. There are people who I find inspirational, who I look to for where I want to be, and then there are people who are or have been where I am now. Those people are just as important – they “get it”. They understand the frustration of having to redefine a relationship with food because it can’t be completely cut out. They understand the mental tightrope of eating to fuel your body vs. forcing yourself to exercise more than necessary so you can eat things in excess. We’re all walking this road together, and the people walking with you are just as qualified to speak into your journey as the people who go before you.

You are full of power. A friend told me this weekend that I engage in really negative self-talk, and that I should be kind to myself more often. Her son, a teenage boy in our church, had just been talking to me about my progress in my quest to learn how to play hockey, and he said to me, “Mrs. Katie…your body looks like you are full of power.” Sometimes I place so much importance on being honest about where I am and what I struggle with that I forget to repeat to myself the positive things that are true: I AM full of power. I am capable of reaching my goals. Fit your mantra to your season – my new season of self-improvement and self-empowerment, each lift and sprint and hockey drill, will be marked with a mantra of kindness to myself; the true and life-giving reminder that I am full of power.  

There are success factors in your life already. Give thanks for them, even as you struggle. I tend to get mentally trapped in the rut of what I can’t do and what I wish I could change. I think about how I’m not athletically inclined, not a person who loves yogurt and vegetables and healthy things, etc. But another realization I had this weekend is that in certain and really significant ways, I am set up for success. My husband will eat whatever Skinnytaste recipe I decide to make for dinner without complaining; he never pressures me to cheat on my meal plan; he will agree to make room in our budget for any and all fitness activities that I enjoy and think will help me progress. He never asks me to lose weight and only encourages me to do so for myself, so that I will feel better. He ran some really slow miles on his days off to help me get in my long runs during half marathon training. Whatever is against you – body type, health issues, busyness – remember that there are things that are working FOR you, and to give thanks for them. Gratefulness can combat the feeling of deprivation when you choose not to eat that thing that everyone else is eating. With regard to my half marathon – I ran the Savin Rock Half Marathon and despite the weight gain I’ve seen over the last year, I was able to finish and meet my two goals for the race in the process: to run/jog it all without stopping to walk and to do so in under 3 hours. I finished in 2 hours, 50 minutes and jogged every last insanely steep hill in the fierce spring winds of the Long Island Sound. One mental hurtle cleared, and now…I’m ready to crush my next goal, stick on the ice, head in the game, to be the first woman on my husband’s hockey team of Air Force bros. And I’m GOING to crush it, because I am full of power.

Alex’s Million Mile Team Kick-Off!

You know that us Chicks love to do good to feel good, and every September, we join super forces to help kids with with cancer keep fighting. Participating in Alex’s Million Mile event has become a tradition for us, and we’ve been ROCKSTARS in that we’ve raised almost $6000 for Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation.

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The great thing about Alex’s #Journey2aMilion event is that there are lost of ways to participate. We’ll be tracking all the miles we run, walk, and bike to count toward the worldwide goal of 1 million miles.  You should totally do it with us and join Team Scootadoot! It’s easy, free, and you’re already training for a race anyway, right? Why not “donate” those miles to a great cause? And bonus, donations are tax deductible!

SuperChicksAMMOn September 1st, we’ll be social media-ing our 1st Mile along with other participants around the world to kick off this years event. You’ll see us tweeting and Facebooking throughout the month, and there will be  prizes and giveaways at the end of the month, so

stay

 

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What’s Old is New Again

Back in 2012 PS (Pre-Scoot), I found my magic combination for weight loss/better fitness/improved health.

Weight Watchers. Running. And Zumba.

This combo saw me down almost 60 pounds from my highest weight.

Me, at my lowest weight in years, hanging out with Mer in Jersey.

Me, at my lowest weight in years, hanging out with Mer in Jersey.

This combo saw me finishing my first race ever.

Beyond proud of myself post Atlantic City 7K

Beyond proud of myself post Atlantic City 7K

 

I was feeling better than I had in years.

And then, I decided to add jumping into the mix. As in jumping right off that wagon and fleeing into a field of cookies. (Poetic license there, but you catch my drift).

That’s the thing, though. The rational thought is, if something is working, why would you stop doing it?

Because, life.

#soreal

#soreal

And then, I convinced myself that this combo, that was working for me, must have been inherently flawed, otherwise it would have kept right on working. And then, I though maybe the combo wasn’t flawed, I was.

In the following four years, I tried a lot of other things. I went to experts who told me that ‘diets don’t work’ and ‘Weight Watchers doesn’t work’. I tried tracking on My Fitness Pal. On paper. In spreadsheets. Not tracking at all. I tried 30 day walking challenges, and squat challenges. I tried to start running again. A few times.

And then, about a month ago, I decided to try this combo.

Weight Watchers. Running. And Zumba.

And it’s working.

#BOOM

#BOOM

 

And I’m working it.

Me and my workout buddy, Pitbull.

Me and my workout buddy, Pitbull.

 

I don’t know if this perfect combo will stay perfect forever. But I do know that right now, it’s working. I feel accomplished, and proud of my efforts. I see the effects on the scale. I see myself finishing races (we’ll talk more about that later) with that beaming look on my face.

For now, I’m partying like it’s 2012, and I’m loving it.

 

New Year Water Challenge

Many, many folks have done a 30 day water challenge wherein they commit to drinking the recommended 64 ounces a day for a month. But guess what? I’m doing the same thing! (Bazinga!)

IG

I drink a lot of water. A lot of flavored water. Flavored with leaves. Black leaves. Okay, Earl Grey. I drink a lot lot lot of hot Celestial Seasonings Earl Grey tea.  Somewhere in the neighborhood five, twenty ounce cups a day. That should count for my 64 ounces of water, honestly. HONESTLY. And really, it can’t be that bad because I sleep like a log all night, every night. Caffeine, schmaffeine.

It’s totally bad. I know.

The real problem with this  habit is the sugar. Basically, I’m consuming a small sugar cane plantation every month. A big can of white sugar sits beside the hot water dispenser at the office and I just pour it into my cup. It’s horrible, I know. Something needs to change or I will be diabetic in the very near future.

my addicition

I even have a cup (or stein, as you will) right before bed.

So why have I decided to be a follower? Great question! Well, aside from the aforementioned risk of diabetic shock descending at any moment, I’m curious to see the changes drinking 64 ounces a day will bring. If I can flush some toxins and get rid of the circles that have been under my eyes since childhood I will be so happy. I’m also hoping healthier skin will help fade my adolescent acne scars. Let’s not mention the laugh lines and crows feet entrenching themselves in my face. I turn forty this year and it’s starting to show. Water, nature’s cure-all, to the rescue!

The "Before"

The “Before”

The plan is to go from five or six cups of tea a day to two in the morning. Then I’ll divide the sixty-four ounce daily intake into eight ounce segments throughout the rest of the day. Using my favorite race sticker covered bottle, fruit infusions, and Nuun should help me say on track. In 30 days I’ll check in and let you know if my bags took a flight home. If you don’t hear from me, I’m laying on the kitchen floor in front of my electric teapot, slipping into a diabetic coma.

 

What’s your method for staying hydrated? Are you a water or sport drink person? Show us your water bottle on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!

#Journey2Million Round-Up (Hint, We Still Rock)

We know it’s not news, but Team Scootadoot continues to be amazing! We’ve logged over a thousand miles for Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation’s #Journey2aMillion event, and the month is not over yet!

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You guys own us. It’s true. To show our love, we’re handing out a few tokens of appreciation!

Mid-Month-Round-Up

The event wraps up next week, but we’ve still got 8 days to knock it out of the park. And we will, because we’re awesome like that! If you’d like to join us, it’s not too late to help us make an impact. We’re doing great things together here, folks.