5.31.2013

Operation Red Bikini and a New Challenge

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I'm sorry, I just couldn't help myself. It's been on my brainz for awhile now and needed to get it outta there. Ha!

Anyway...

It's officially the end of Operation Red Bikini. SAD DAY! I have loved participating with the girls over at Southern Girl Gets Fit and ElleNoel, and the hashtag #operationredbikini has been fun to follow as well.

Initially, I participated in ORB to help me stay motivated and as inspiration for Rams Cheerleaders try outs. It's so much easier staying on track when you surround yourself with things that will help you work towards your goals, like ORB. I worked really hard and got down to 21.5% body fat, and I was and still am so proud of myself!

After try outs were over, I stopped working out regularly and wasn't as concerned with the food choices I was making, and I gained 6 lbs. It doesn't sound like a lot, but I am short, so its noticeable. And, you know how it goes...6 lbs turns into 10 then 15 and on and on. It's gotta stop!

I haven't checked my body fat percentage, but I can most definitely tell you that I am not at 21.5%. Honestly, I was burned out and disappointed.

BUT NOT ANYMORE!

Operation Red Bikini may be over, but I am ready to get back on track and work towards my goals.

Here's what's up:

  • I want to get down to 16% body fat. 
  • I want to be able to do an unassisted pull up.
  • I want to get down to 120lbs.

I am doing a 30-day challenge with some friends at work, and it starts tomorrow. Each of us picked something we want to do everyday during the month of June, and I chose to do yoga. I decided on this for a couple reasons. First, its an amazing workout. Second, it helps me de-stress and stay focused. And, of course, doing yoga everyday will help me achieve my goals. Up until this point, I have only ever done yoga once a week, so I am really excited to see how my body transforms during the challenge.

Side note: Our 30-day challenge was inspired by this TED Talk. Check it out, and if you want to join the challenge, let me know! I would be happy to be your accountability partner, and it doesn't have to be fitness related if you don't want it to be.

Here's my pre-30 Day Challenge photo:


My face is fuller, my arms and tummy are softer, and I can see that I have slacked lately. Here's to a new challenge and achieving goals!

5.30.2013

The Pintester Movement

First, welcome fellow Pintestes! Happy Pintester Movement day!

For everyone else...

Are any of you familiar with The Pintester? If not, you should be. Sonja (the Pintester) tries out a bunch of stuff found on Pinterest and blogs about it. IT'S FREAKIN' HILARIOUS! I kid you not, I about pee my pants every time I read her posts because it's so funny.


Sonja is hosting the Pintester Movement, where a bunch of people are trying out pins and posting about it on the same day (today). Most of you know about my love of Pinterest, so I just couldn't NOT participate. So here it goes!

The Jane Not So Plain Pin Test: 

Image and original project by AppleJane
I know you've seen a million of these projects on Pinterest. So, I figured it's the perfect pin test.  I wanted to spiff up a wine bottle or ten to decorate my bookcases. So if it turns out, then I will use it as planned. If not, I can use my stash of wine bottles for something better!

The original pin calls for an empty wine bottle, yarn and packing tape. Well, good news guys, I have an empty wine bottle just waiting to be wrapped up. Bad news: I don't have packing tape or yarn, so I used hot glue and raffia instead. Listen, the Pintester herself doesn't use the called-for "ingredients," so why should I?

Here's how my version turned out:



Overall, I think it was a really easy project, and it pretty much turned out how I expected. The raffia is forgiving, so it easily hides imperfections. Tori-1, Wine Bottle- 0...go team!


My raffia-wrapped wine bottle now happily sits on my bookcase, keeping my cookbooks company while they collect dust aren't in use.

A couple tips:
  • Try not to burn your fingers on the hot glue gun if you want to keep your finger prints.
  • Wrap the raffia tight and slightly overlap the layers. 
  • Of course, you've gotta glue the beginnings and ends of the strings of raffia, but it also helps to add hot glue here and there in the middle too.
  • And, you may as well empty another bottle drink a glass of wine while crafting. Wine makes everything more fun ;) 

What do you think? Success or fail?


Go here and see who else joined the Pintester Movement!


And, don't forget to vote for me in the search for the next Fox Sports Midwest girl! It's the last day to vote, and the winner will be announced on June 5th!


5.29.2013

Weigh In Wednesday

Pretty Strong Medicine

Today, I'm linking up with Heather, Ash, Bailey, and Amy for Weigh In Wednesday. I thought long and hard about whether I really wanted to do this or not, but in the end I think it will be good for me. You see, I haven't been eating well or working out, so I've gained. Not a lot, but I am still up from where I was at the beginning of April.


On the plus side, this will not only give me accountability, but I also decided that today is the day that I get back on track. I have my meals planned out, and I will be doing a yoga class today to kick off my renewed commitment to exercising regularly.

Head over to the link up and check out what everyone else has to say. I am sure there will be a ton of great tips and inspiration!

Don't forget to vote for me in the search for the next FOX Sports Midwest girl! Thanks again for your support!


5.24.2013

Fitness Fridays: 5.24.13

Happy Friday, JNSPers, and hello 3-day weekend! I have a few health/fitness/lifestyle things I want to share with you today:

1. Almond Milk

Have I told you guys how much I LOVE almond milk, yet? Well, let me tell ya, it's the bee's knees. Seriously. I use Silk Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk for everything...in protein shakes, as coffee creamer, on my cereal. (I have only bought Silk, so I can't vouch for the taste of the others. But, I am sure they comparable.)

Before I discovered the nectar of the gods, I was a strict skim milk user, and I will probably never go back to using skim milk on a regular basis. Take a look at the differences between the two:

Almond Milk vs. Skim Milk

Information via MyFitnessPal
I prefer almond milk because it has less calories, less carbs, and more calcium. And, almond milk is thicker than skim milk, so that's a another plus to me.


2. Self Tanner

Like I said yesterday, I look better with a little color. When I can't or don't get a spray tan, I use Jergens Natural Glow moisturizer. But, here's the trick: I mix it with regular lotion, 2 parts self-tanner and 1 part lotion. I think the color turns out more evenly, and I don't get the tell-tale funky self-tanner hands when I do this. WIN!


3. Fox Sports Midwest Girls

SUPER EXCITING NEWS in my world...I am a top 10 finalist in the search for the next Fox Sports Midwest Girl! I am way beyond excited, and so honored to have made it this far.

Click on the photo above to watch the video I submitted!
The winner is determined in part by online voting, so if you have a spare second, please vote for me here. And, if you feel compelled to do so, please spread the word and help a sister out!

Thank you so much in advance for your support!

5.22.2013

Life Hacks

When you're on the go a lot, sometimes things get left at home or forgotten about or don't get done or...

The list goes on. Between two jobs, grad school and the constant battle of wanting to live a healthy life style, I sometimes I feel like I am walking around like a chicken with its head cut off.

Side note: props to all the ladies and gents who do all of this and have kids. You rock!

Do you feel this way sometimes, too? Here are a couple tricks to make a busy life seem less overwhelming and more pleasant:

1. Coffee Ice Cubes

I got this trick from my sister, Sarah; she's pretty much a genius. Now that it's a lot warmer in the Midwest, I like to drink iced coffee in the mornings. Mama needs her coffee to get the day started, or grumpy Tori gets unleashed...

Here's the problem though, I don't have time in morning to let the coffee cool completely before pouring it over ice. When you pour hot coffee over regular H20 ice, it gets watery and kind of gross.

Solution: half coffee cubes, half regular ice cubes. It stays delicious and doesn't get watered down. WIN!

Side note: an 8oz cup of coffee makes an entire tray of ice cubes.

2. Powdered Blush as a Lip Color

I had an audition after work one day, so I brought my "stage" makeup with me, but I forgot something for my lips. I improvised using chapstick, powdered blush, and cream highlighter.

Here's the quick fix:

  • Put on a layer of chapstick
  • Wet your finger and rub it in the blush to get some pigment.
  • Run your pigment-covered finger over your lips.
  • Dab a little highlighter in the center of the top and bottom lip and blend outward.
Voila! Instant lip color; it's subtle, but better than nothing!

3. A Spray Tan

Most people, myself included, look better with a little color. I try to stay out of tanning beds because of the risk of skin cancer, so I spray tan instead! I don't get them regularly, but when I do get them, I LOVE it.

Another major plus? It makes my skin look more even and clear, so I wear less makeup while I am bronzed. We all know what that means, less makeup = less time getting ready in the morning! Another WIN!

Oklahoma

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In all seriousness, my heart is broken for the men, women and kids who have lost everything in the recent storms in Oklahoma. Things like this make me realize how lucky I am to have a roof over my head, clothes on my back, and the opportunity to be so crazy busy.

If you would like to help, check out my post on Totally Stitchin' for some ideas!


5.09.2013

Finish This Sentence Part 4

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Unlike my sibling(s) (that I love very much).... I am more outspoken and sassy. My sister, Sarah, has the patience of a saint and is wise beyond her years.

My best friend says tells...the best stories. Andrea's stories are impeccably detailed and always hysterical. It's funny because Kyra tells stories just like Andrea. Coincidence? I think not.

People call me...Tori Marie, Tortellini, Tort, Torti, Nado (as in Tornado), the list goes on...

I most often dream...that I have to go back to high school and take a bunch of classes over again. I also regularly dream that I still have a paper due for a class I took in Undergrad. HOLY SCHOOL ANXIETY!

The best part of my day...is when Kyra gets home.

I get really annoyed...when the DVR cuts off the previews for next week's show. It's like, HELLO! I only got to see half the preview!

There's nothing like a... a glass of wine and a bubble bath to wrap up a long day of work and/or class. 

Lately, I can't get enough...iced coffee in the morning. Instead of spending five million dollars every year going to Starbuck's, I am using my Keurig and making my own. Money in tha bank!

One thing I am NOT is...half-assed, literally and figuratively. Mama's got some junk in the trunk! But seriously, I am very detail-oriented, so nothing I do is done halfway. I may procrastinate, but I WILL get it done and it WILL be done to the best of my ability.

I spent too much money on...my hair. I've been dying my hair since 8th grade, got extensions last year, and have purchased A LOT of hair product/tools over the years. 

I want to learn...how to speak Spanish. I know some of the basics, but I would love to become fluent! Funny story, my sister (the same one mentioned above) taught me my first Spanish sentence when I was like 10 or something..."Mi hermana es una vaca," which translates to "My sister is a cow." Nice, eh?

I can't stop...watching Friends. No lie, I watch it every night before I go to bed and die laughing. Even if I have seen an episode 10+ times, it's still so funny! How you doin'?

Never have I ever...seen The Sound of Music or Mary Poppins. I'm not sheltered, I swear!

Reese Witherspoon...is more like America's Sassy Sweetheart. 


5.08.2013

Work Out Wednesday with Skinny Meg

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Happy Wednesday, JNSPers! Today, I am linking up with Skinny Meg for Workout Wednesday. As most of you know, I love Pinterest for healthy eating and work out inspiration, but there are a couple other things that I use to keep me on track.

1. MyFitnessPal

Most of you are probably familiar with MyFitnessPal, but it really is a great tool to help you keep track of calories in and out by logging food and exercise. I am not religious about logging every single food item or exercise session, but I love using it to look up calorie counts of various foods. I get into routines with what I am eating, so after awhile, I know about how many calories I am consuming without logging them into MFP.

If you have MyFitnessPal, let's be friends...find me here.

2. Nike Training Club



Nike Training Club (NTC) is a free app for iOS and Android that has a ton of different workouts. Since there are over 100 workouts in NTC, you can choose the length, level of difficulty, and focus area of the workout. Each workout is designed to be completed with minimal equipment and can easily be done at home. This is great if you are super busy and can't make it to the gym!

3. The People Around Me

Of course, this is more than just a tool I can use to help me on my health and wellness journey. For me, when I look at the people around me who are working to make their lives better, I am inspired to do the same. For example, my mom ran her first 5K over the weekend, and she did great! She set a goal, worked hard, and accomplished what she set out to do.

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Another example, I love following health and wellness blogs, like Elle Noel and Rabbit Food for My Bunny Teeth. I may not be a runner like LeighAnn, but she is a rockstar and so inspiring. I especially love reading her workout tips and food ideas. And, Catherine has a ton of healthy eating ideas and recipes. Both great resources for getting motivated and staying on track!




How do you stay on track?


5.03.2013

Pumpkin Parfait

Happy Friday, JNSPers! I am here for another Fitness Friday with a recipe that would be a great snack or quick & easy breakfast. I guess this isn't technically a fitness tip, but we all know that half the battle is fought in the kitchen! This mini meal has 17g Protein and 229 calories with healthy doses of fiber, calcium and Vitamin D.  I have for you the delicious Pumpkin Parfait!


Ingredients:

  • 1 single-serving container of vanilla Greek yogurt (Or, about 2/3 cup if you buy bigger containers)
  • 1/2 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup Pumpkin Flax Granola
  • Dash of Pumpkin Pie Spice
Directions:

  • Grab a mason jar and layer ingredients. Start with the Greek yogurt, add the pureed pumpkin, then top with the granola and a sprinkle of Pumpkin Pie Spice.
I like to take this as a snack for work, so I don't immediately add the granola. I put it in a separate container or baggie, then add it when I am ready to eat the parfait. I do this so the granola doesn't get soggy.

Nutritional Information:


Nutritional Information from MyFitnessPal.


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