Monday, October 31, 2016

MEGA Favourites Round Up: Blogtober

Today is the last day of Blogtober, and I must say I am feeling a little sad! It has been so much fun brainstorming content for this little bloggy of mine, so I am thinking I am going to keep it rolling and continue blogging as much as possible. That being said, I wanted to do a round up of some of my favourites from this month. It's a mixture of food, fashion, skincare, blog posts - a BIG range of goodies comin' your way!

Let's get started : )

Blog posts I loved writing this month:

Still in love with these under eye masks to make your eyes feel refreshed and more awake!

Fall sunsets and sunrises

A little fall shopping haul ; )

Lots of snuggle time with the pup and a good book.

Healthy morning habits to start now. Easy to add into your current morning routine!

Trail dates with Nala bear : )

Getting my hair refreshed for fall!


I hope you guys enjoyed Blogtober. I want to thank everyone who read even one post this month. I truly do love bringing you guys fun content, so please let me know what YOU would like to see next on the blog : ) Chat with you all soon!

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Recipe: Buddha Bowl for the Soul

Alright folks, we are nearing the end of Blogtober so I figured it was time to share a warm and comforting bowl of deliciousness that is a tasty lunch or dinner. The nights are getting chillier and it's about this time where I feel more inclined for comfort food dishes. However, some comfort foods aren't exactly the healthiest. Although I'd like to eat pasta every night for dinner, I know it would leave me feeling groggy.

I made this the other night for dinner and (shockingly) it was a hit. Ryan typically isn't a huge fan of the "hippie granola" things I make, though he added a little twist to his Buddha bowl to make it more his style. Of course, the whole idea was the same, but you can truly customize this according to your liking.

Ingredients you will need:

1/2 cup - 1 cup quinoa or rice
Sauteed kale (or a green of your choice)
Sauteed purple cabbage
Roasted beets
Roasted carrots
A touch of roasted yellow onion
1 scoop of kimchi (or sauerkraut)
1/2 cup chickpeas
(I warmed mine up in the oven for about 5 minutes with some garlic powder, salt & pepper)

For the dressing:

Add as many of these ingredients to your liking.
- Raw apple cider vinegar
- Tamari
- Water (to thin out)
- Nutritional yeast
- Garlic (I used two cloves)

Blend it all up and pour over your bowl. Once everything was plated, it looked something like this:

I ended up making two more servings of this to take to work for an easy lunch. It is filled with healthy fats, good carbs & protein from both the quinoa and chickpeas. You can use any protein of your liking, and can swap out the roasted beets for sweet potato or squash, if you like. It really is super easy to make your own, so feel free to experiment!


I hope you all enjoyed! Let me know if you try the recipe or if you have a go-to Buddha bowl combination : )

Saturday, October 29, 2016

The Peppermint Tea Obsession is REAL!

SOOO. If you haven't guessed, I am having a love affair with peppermint tea. Yes, I'm still a coffee fan. Yes, I love me some hot chocolate on a cold winter's night, but lately I have been totally into peppermint tea.

I chatted about a few reasons why I love it in my post with five tips to kill the bloat, but I wanted to elaborate and show you what I have been drinking & some honorable mentions.

So why peppermint? Peppermint is caffeine free, so it's perfect to drink before bed. It can help with digestion, reduce bloating, and is extremely calming. Plus, the smell of peppermint can be both uplifting and relaxing.

Some other benefits:

- Reduce inflammation
- Calming for the digestive system
- Reduces the chances of sickness/nausea
- Antibacterial, excellent at killing germs
- Supports the immune system
- Can help suppress appetite
- Provides relief for stomach cramps, gas, and stomach discomfort
- Helps relieve mental stress

That being said, here's some that I keep in my tea arsenal:

 While I try to stick to organic teas as much as possible, Tetley has been my go to. I may or may not have one in my filing cabinet work as well so I can have peppermint tea all day every day at work.

You also can't go wrong with some good ol' DavidsTea. This one is a combination of green tea and peppermint and has some spices such as ginger and fennel as well. Super tasty and lots of health benefits with the addition of these healing spices.

I reserve this one for the holiday time as it has hints of white chocolate and spearmint. It is super festive for Christmas and is an old favourite from a year or so ago.


Are you a tea fan? What's your favourite kind? Any I should try!?

Friday, October 28, 2016

Five Things Friday: Fall Changes Edition

Good morning!

It is Friiiiiday, which means it is almost the weekend. I've got one more day of work and then the weekend is here! As usual, I am sharing five things that I have been loving this weekend. Let me know in the comments what YOU have been loving this week - try anything new? Eat something delicious? Buy some cute shoes? I wanna know! : )

First things first, this is an exciting change for my hair! I am not the type to get my hair done often, so when I do I like to make it special. Seriously. The last time I got my hair trimmed was over six months ago, and the last time it was coloured was when I did the whole ombre scenario over a year ago. Not only was my hair in need of freshening up, but I figured now was the best time to make a colour change, too! I am so happy with how it turned out. Funny how a new hair do can make you feel like a new person! : )

Ooh, yes. The coveted Blundstone boots I have been wanting for the last year. Ryan and I celebrated our anniversary on Tuesday, and this was a thoughtful gift that he knew I would love. Now it's time to break them in!

Mmm, Monday night's dinner was cauliflower crust pizza! Have you guys tried this before? It is amazing. The only downside is the cheese, BUT that is my own fault for adding more on top. Ha, ha. I used veggie pepperoni on mine, whereas Ryan cooked up some chicken breast for his pizza. This picture was taken pre-oven, so picture this all hot and melty. Ooh, yah!

So Nala still kills me. Seriously. She is so cute. Look at those puppy dog eyes! It made my at home yoga practice on Monday night difficult with her trying to get in there too. It's safe to say she is the real master of downward facing dog, no matter how hard I try.

So it's not exactly a Christmas mug, but it's close enough. For now. This has been my go to mug lately for any hot beverages, accompanied of course by my candy cane pajama pants and red, green, and white striped socks. I know. Too soon, Holly. Too soon. I can't help myself!


Hope you guys enjoyed! Catch ya tomorrow : )

Thursday, October 27, 2016

How to Make RUNNING Suck LESS!

Running is hard. You know this, I know this, we all know this. You may have a super hard run where it feels as if your head and legs are not on the same page. You may try a new route that is filled with hills and be exhausted after. However, on the other hand there are great runs out there waiting for you, too! You gotta take the good days with the bad days, because with anything, they are bound  to happen. That being said, today I wanted to share a few ways to make running suck less.

1. Create a custom playlist OR listen to a podcast: I am a huge advocate for listening to music that you love while on the run. During the Victoria Half Marathon I tuned into a playlist I made on Spotify. If you are interested, you can check out my running beats playlist here. Alternatively, during a run is a prime time to check out a podcast to pass the time. A few favourites of mine are The Skinny Confidential Him & Her podcast and The Bitch Bible. Be sure to check them out - they will keep you thoroughly entertained!

2. Take walk breaks. Running for 20, 30, 40+ minutes can be hard whether you are a newbie runner or if you have been running for a while. Don't be afraid to take walk breaks! This helps mentally break up the run, that way you can run for 9 minutes, say, and know that you have a 1 minute break coming up. I took this approach during the Victoria Half Marathon and it was an excellent way to give my mind and body a bit of a break. Plus I was able to refuel and rehydrate during this time, too!

3. Find a workout buddy. Running is easier with a friend. That is, if you like running with someone else. Your running partner can help make you accountable, and there is nothing better than chit chatting and catching up with a friend (or family member!) while you are getting your sweat on. Time tends to pass by when you are sharing stories too, and if you are racing, you have crushed a goal together, too!

4. Buy some cute workout gear. No, seriously. Having nice workout clothing gets me pumped up. There are few things I love more than shopping for exercise clothes. If you had to choose between a baggy pair of old sweat pants and a new pair of Lululemon capris, which ones would you pick? I know the answer is different for everyone, but I'd reach for the Lulu's and kill my run with confidence. Now, I'm not saying go by a new pair of shorts or a top every time you want to work out. No, treat yourself to something here and there to help keep you feel motivated. It's all part of that feel good, look good plan.

5. Document your journey. For me, I like to document my running journey on this blog. For others it may be a journal, a planner, or in list form. Whatever it is, keeping track will allow you to visually see your progress, and you can always look back and reflect on your journey. It's important to give yourself credit for all of your hard work, and seeing all the great things written down on paper will help you look forward to another good run later on!


For all the runners out there, what are some things YOU do to make running suck less?

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

How to Turn a Setback into a Comeback


We have all been there. You're on a roll with your clean eating and exercise, the sun is shining, birds are chirping, and suddenly it all falls apart. Maybe something happened at work to cause you to go off track. Maybe you suddenly got hit real hard with LIFE and all that it can entail, and maybe you're just feeling unmotivated and down in the dumps.

Well friends, I'm here to chat about how you can deal with setbacks. Yeah, they suck. BUT they are a part of life and it's important to acknowledge it and carry on. What do you do when you face a setback, though? What's the first step you take to get yourself back in that right direction again? Here's a few things I try to keep in mind.

1. It is only temporary. You have the ability to make a choice that will either further your progress or hinder it. I could get extra sad, wallow away with a pizza and feel even worse, OR I could do something that makes my soul happy. You want to do things that fill your happy bucket, whether that's painting your nails, doing a face mask, taking a nap, reading a book - whatever it is, do it!

2. PLAN and prioritize. I am a huge advocate for planning and prioritizing what needs to be done. If you are searching for a new work out plan, maybe that's just the thing to pull you out of a slump. Or perhaps you simply need to plan out your day, week, month in your planner to wrap your head around a hectic schedule. Making a plan is one of the first steps for turning a setback into a comeback!

3. Make a list. This goes along with the second point above, but I love me a good list. I probably write at least three lists per day, whether that's with work, personal life, or what I aim to accomplish on the blog. Try dividing your list into categories. Leave work at work and focus on what you can check off for your personal and mental health.

4. Motivate yourself. Yes, we all need an extra dose of motivation sometimes. Every so often I will sit down with my notebook and revisit my goals. Revisiting my goals allows me to see what needs to be done, and that alone can motivate me to just get up and DO IT. If motivation doesn't come all that easy to you, take to YouTube and watch some motivational videos to get you pumped up. Check out some new bloggers, listen to a podcast, or buy yourself a new workout outfit if that's what it takes to get you back in the gym and feeling good (if that's your goal). On a similar note, surrounding yourself with a group of people who lift you up is great motivation as well!

5. Celebrate your accomplishments, whether they are big or small. You don't have to scream it to the top of the mountains (though by all means if you are comfortable doing that), but take a moment to THANK YOURSELF and celebrate a job well done. This could be buying a new lipstick, or even just taking 20 minutes to relax in a bath and relish in your accomplishments. Often times self-love is overlooked, so take a bit of downtime as a celebration of your hard work. You deserve it, and it will leave you recharged for your comeback!


What are your tips for turning a setback into a comeback?

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Some Tippity-Tips for Staying On Track

Staying on track can be one of the hardest things when you are on a health and fitness journey. It is simple enough to get started with a new work out plan, or eating more wholesome foods, but eventually that love wears off and you eventually feel STUCK. Sure, that feeling is temporary and you can move on, but how do you even start the process of moving forward? While I was brainstorming for this post I compiled five of my go-to tips that I like to use when I am either feeling low on motivation or just need an extra boost. Of course, be sure to share in the comments if there is anything that you find yourself drawn to!

Let's get to it : )

1. Find a buddy. It is so powerful to find someone to help keep you accountable, whether it's with being consistent with your workout or not being tempted by junk food. Your buddy can be a good friend, a family member, and there are tons of online communities where people can connect to other like-minded individuals.

2. Meal prep & eat lots of fruits and veggies. When I have meals ready or have packed my lunch ahead of the time, I feel a million times better about the choices I make throughout the day. It keeps your meals organized, and by planning ahead of time (I like to include snacks throughout the work day as well), you take the guesswork out of it. On the days when I have nothing prepared, I am more prone to grabbing some beet crackers and hummus and calling it a day. Mixing lots of veggies and fruits into your meals and snacks will help satisfy a sweet tooth (a little apple and peanut butter moment never hurt nobody) and the fibre will help keep you full. Of course, be mindful of your activity level for the day too. If you are doing a long run or lifting at the gym, plan your meals around this to ensure you are getting the proper carbs, protein, and fats for your post-workout recovery.

3. Treat yourself to a bite. I am a huge dessert fan. Apparently a couple Fridays ago it was national dessert day, so you better believe that I took part in that. However, dessert when you are out at a restaurant or at a birthday party is considered a special occasion, whereas at home my dessert might be some homemade applesauce with frozen blueberries (trust me, this combination is amazing!). However, if you really want to try something, have a bite! Why not? Sometimes when I am tempted to have a dessert I will cut a small bite first, then that will allow me to test it and see if it is truly worthwhile.

4. Write it down. When I first embarked on my fitness journey I used a journal to document my food choices and workouts. I even tracked how much water I was drinking to ensure I stayed hydrated. Now, I am more intuitive when it comes to my eating and drinking style. I know how much water I need to feel good, and I know what types of foods help me feel my best. That being said, however, it never hurts to jot things down to keep yourself in check. There is something about visually seeing and physically writing things down that triggers your brain and gut to re-think that extra cookie, or two cookies, or the box... You get it!

5. Have fun with it. There is no need to stay in the same ol' routine day in and day out if you are becoming bored of it. Switch up your workouts and try new recipes to keep things interesting! There are so many ways to put a healthy twist on some not-so healthy favourites. Besides, it is always fun experimenting in the kitchen!


Stay tuned for a new post tomorrow that chats about how to turn a setback into a comeback!