I met Lorna Jane! …and an IDEA World Fitness BlogFest sneak peek…

I participated in countless challenges with Lorna Jane and Sweat Pink. I’m embarrassed to say I even had a shopping cart full and ready because I thought I rocked the #movenourishbelieve Pinterest Challenge – oops!

This time around, during the #activelivingchallenge, I’ve had a hard time keeping up, but for good reason! I’ve been so busy getting ready, attending BlogFest, and recovering from BlogFest.

It was an amazing experience!!

This will just have to be a teaser because, while I’m playing catch up, I have two posts for you and won’t get to a full BlogFest recap until next week.

Since I was at BlogFest, I did manage to get the best bonus challenge of all…

Meeting Lorna Jane #activeliving challenge

A picture with Ms. Lorna Jane herself! So cool! And she was incredibly sweet and so friendly!

I also realized during week two of the #activelivingchallenge that my kids are the answer to everything – they are my motivation, they are who/what I am grateful for, and they are my everything.

Putting myself first to be a better mom

You might think that means I don’t take care of myself, and that happens from time to time, but it has helped me realize something. I am so grateful for them that they motivate me to improve myself.

I’m inspired to take care of myself, eat healthy and stay active, so I will be the best mom possible and show them the best example possible.

I’m so blessed to be where I am right now, to have wonderful people in my life, and be presented with such amazing opportunities.

I can’t wait to fill you in on my most recent opportunity to meet inspiring women and share and learn together at IDEA World Fitness BlogFest with Sweat Pink!

Do you put your kids first, or have you realized you can better serve them when you put yourself first? Of course, this goes for putting all others first as well – even if you don’t have children – share! I want to know!

IDEA World BlogFest with Sweat Pink {I’m comin’ for ya!}

I guarantee you I was one of the first people registered for IDEA World BlogFest with SweatPink. I jumped on that opportunity so fast it left my whole family stunned! I’m a very frugal lady who either never spends money or doesn’t spend it without taking A LOT of time to think about it, but when that first email came out I talked it over with my mom and husband and decided to go for it that day!

IDEA World Fitness BlogFest with Sweat Pink

I cannot wait!

I’m so happy I signed up so fast because I also jumped at the chance to speak during the BlogFest Lightning Round and, thanks to you guys, I was chosen! I’m so excited for this chance because I will get the opportunity to introduce myself to every amazing person in that room all at one time!

Now, if only all my practice could get that presentation to cover all I want to say in five minutes without sounding like an auctioneer!

Blogfest lightning round

I also would feel a lot more calm if my packing was done and I felt confident I had everything I need. I’ve got my lists, did some shopping, and think I have a decent idea but I really hope I don’t forget something!

I also hope the fact that I left my shoes in the splash pad parking lot today for someone else to enjoy isn’t an indication that I have too much in my head to get any one thing right!

We have so many exciting opportunities available to us that week! Not only do we get to meet some amazing people, but we will learn so much and leave feeling completely empowered and ready to conquer the world. I most look forward to that feeling and how high I’ll be flying before I get back to reality of a SAHM of a 1 and 3 year old who works part-time from home and will be losing her nanny a week later…

The keynote speaker is Jillian Michaels, we will learn about building our brand with Cassie Ho from Blogilates, and we get to workout with Tony Horton! Besides all of that, everyone in attendance will be amazing bloggers who I have looked up to for the past year!

I can’t wait to meet the Fit Approach ladies – they are all so sweet and I’m sure they will be in person! They’re also having a meet and greet with Lorna Jane! She is so inspiring and I’ve gotten so much out of the Lorna Jane Challenges.

Speaking of challenges, this past week Sweat Pink and Lorna Jane began the #activelivingchallenge. I’ve been joining in each day with photos and have loved seeing everyone else post as well. That meet-and-greet will go along with this challenge, which is so exciting! If you’re not going to BlogFest you can still participate in the challenge and be in the running for a Lorna Jane gift card. Come follow me on Instagram and find out what all these photos are about!

#activelivingchallenge

If it isn’t extremely apparent – I feel like a hyper little poodle with all these exclamation points! – I’m pretty excited!

I’ve been looking forward to this for months now and can’t believe it’s only days away. I’m ready to be back in CA, and I can’t believe I’ve been twice this year! The last trip was a dream and I know this one will be great! I’m so ready to meet all the other Sweat Pink Ambassadors who will be there! I feel so fortunate to represent DietBetter while I am there – they have done so much for me personally with my weight loss and professionally supporting me and believing in me. I’m also very excited to support Amy with Momentum Jewelry at the Expo – it is such a small world that we live just minutes away from each other and will be meeting in California! It’s going to be amazing!

 

 

So, who will be at BlogFest??? And who will be wishing they were! I’ll keep you posted on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

 

 

20 Healthy Snacks Kids LOVE {and a lunch bag giveaway!}

I can’t even believe it’s back-to-school time already!

Whew! Those summers go fast! I’m definitely not rushing through the time we have left, but I am ready to get a jump start on planning for school lunches for my step-daughter, afternoon snacks for my new pre-schooler (insert Momma “my baby!” squeal here!), and anytime snacks for my snack-tastic little lady.

Fortunately, snacks are pretty common around here so we keep them as healthy as possible. It’s not uncommon for our lunches to look like snack time either.

Healthy Snacks lunch

So, I’ve compiled a list of all our favorite snacks for home and at school. Also, if you’re good on snack ideas but could use a new lunch bag, scroll to the end and enter to win a ThirtyOne lunch bag courtesy of Chiquita!

Healthy snacks Kids LOVE - great list of perfect snacks for kiddos (and they're healthy too... Shhh...)

20 Healthy Snacks Kids LOVE

1. Frozen Yogurt Fruit Bites

We just discovered these recently and gave it a try with fat-free vanilla yogurt and blueberries. It might not be a great school lunch snack unless you’re able to keep it very cold. For little ones or an after-school snack, these are great and could definitely pass for a dessert!

25 Healthy Snacks Kids LOVE - Blueberry Yogurt Bites

2. Banana

For some fun take a toothpick to the peel and write a message that will turn brown by lunchtime.

3. Fruit with Cottage Cheese

This is one my mom used to do. When I was younger canned peaches with cottage cheese was a common snack. There’s something about the canned peaches (not packed in syrup) that brings back childhood memories for me, but other fresh fruits would taste great too.

4. Frozen Grapes

5. Almonds

Almonds are one of our favorites. I suppose this wouldn’t work for but-free schools, but I like to take pre-portioned almonds as an on-the-go snack because they are so easy and there is no mess. The Dollar Tree has small plastic containers that are the perfect 1/4 cup serving size.

6. Homemade Smoothies

7. Celery Sticks (with nut butter for dipping)

8. String Cheese

My kiddos’ favorite! Also, pre-packaged snacks are so easy! My tip: stop buying “light” string cheese! The flavor of the regular ones more than makes up for the couple calories your saving and satisfies much more.

9. Dried Fruit

Healthy snacks kids LOVE - dried fruit

10. Applesauce Packets

11. Jazzed-Up Plain Yogurt

I love knowing exactly what is going into my kiddos’ little bodies.  One way to do that is to mix our own yogurt flavors with our own toppings.  I’ll take old small jars (pimento jars are the perfect size and have a mouth wide enough for a spoon) and fill with plain yogurt and top with whatever fresh fruit we have on hand, or send so e granola to throw in.  If we didn’t have fruit I’ve used jam, and as special treat I’ve sweetened with sprinkles in yellow and blue so they mix to green when stirred.

12. Pretzels

13. Cucumber Slices

My kiddos love cucumber slices plain, and I love that they are good for them and pretty mess-free. For something a little more exciting, I like to sprinkle them with a little lemon pepper, or you could spread some tuna mixed with cottage cheese on each slice.

14. Carrot Chips or Sticks

15. Fruit Leather

You can buy some real-fruit fruit leather, but I’m excited to give this a whirl in my new dehydrator! From my understanding, with a little applesauce base and some puréed fruit I can have some for my kiddos straight from our kitchen!

16. Granola or Fruit and Nut bars

Healthy snacks kids LOVE - fruit and nut bars

17. Broccoli “Trees”

18. Frozen Peas

My little ones to crazy for these! They love them frozen more than cooked, and they taste so sweet and probably feel great for young ones who are teething!

19. Raisins or Craisin packs

20. Chiquita Apple Bites

These are great because there are a few different varieties to choose from. The larger bags of sliced apples are great for my little ones when I don’t know if they’ll eat a whole apple. The individual servings of sliced red, green, or peeled apples are perfect for throwing into school lunches. For kiddos like mine who haven’t tasted the deliciousness of apples and caramel, the small bags of apples with little Carmel cups inside were a huge hit! I expected my little ones to use the apples as a spoon just for the caramel but they ate the whole bag of apples!

25 Healthy Snacks Kids LOVE - Chiquita Bites

My kiddos loved trying the Chiquita Bites! They will definitely be going in my step-daughter’s lunches once school starts up because they are so easy!

Speaking of lunches….

The folks at Chiquita want to make sure you go back-to-school with a snazzy new lunch bag, and they’re giving away an awesome ThirtyOne bag to one of you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck all!

I want to hear your favorite healthy snacks for kids in the comments – I love getting new ideas!

Zero Weight Loss without Tracking…

Ok, friends… I have stalled big time!

I’m slowly crawling out of it, but when I look back over the past 9 months, I’m so disappointed! I was in a great place last summer. I gave myself a break for the holidays that turned into nearly 6 months of struggling to get back on track. I did well with my bridesmaid motivation and it’s been downhill since then…

I’m working out, I’ve been buying the right food, I challenge myself to drink more water, and I’ve made some major changes from two years ago.

There is one thing that has been my downfall.

I am unable to keep myself on track without tracking.

If you’re friends with me on My Fitness Pal (2Momma2 Come find me!), you’ll have noticed I seem to log in most days, but I haven’t been tracking my food.

So, what the heck have I been doing?

Well, I have My Fitness Pal synced up to another app called EveryMove. Through EveryMove I get rewarded for logging my activity with donations to charities or product discounts.  I have the app in my ipad and my android phone.

Tracking activity with EveryMove

Reward me and I’ll do it! Remember, I have my MS in Behavior Analysis and Therapy… We do nothing without reinforcement!

EveryMove is all about rewards!

You share your activities and get rewarded with points and encouragement, and you earn larger rewards like discounts and donations to charity. I love all of that.

Earn rewards for being active and donate to charities with EveryMove

What I don’t love is that the rewards aren’t free. I have yet to find one where you do not need to make a purchase, which is why I typically go for the charity donations. I also don’t love that I don’t get rewarded for my steps like the Fitbit folks. The do have space for suggestions for devices and I’ve suggested adding the Polar Loop.

Despite that, the reward system EveryMove has works for me. I consistently track my activity to rack up my points, and that’s what it’s all about. I have to admit, I’ve been using EveryMove for nearly a year, but it became a lot more fun when the Sweat Pink Ambassadors began reviewing the site and I finally had friends to interact with. I signed up for the review since I already used the app, but as far as I can tell we get no reimbursement just to share our completely honest reviews.

Activity feedback with EveryMove

My plan to get back on track with tracking

I’ve started getting better with my tracking, and my plan to do more meal planning and tracking before or very soon after I eat. I’ve already been doing well, so this will continue and get me back to heading in the right direction to where I want to be.

Now, who’s going to reward me for not shoving that cookie in my mouth…???

 

 

 

Do you use EveryMove? Be sure to comment so I can add you!

Do you belong to another site that rewards you for activity? I’d love to hear it!

How do you #sweatpink?

Online Gym, but better than a gym!

A couple weeks ago I found a amazing opportunity through How Does She to try the online gym, Method 5 Fitness, free for a month. Check out their post on M5 Fitness because they explain what to expect better than I can.

M5 fitness online gym: join our team!

I didn’t expect anything great, but I did expect to get a few good workouts to help keep me on track. Boy, was I wrong! M5 Fitness is fantastic! I love the workouts – there are so many I won’t get to before the month is up. I’ve learned a lot from the nutrition videos, and have been motivated by the coaching videos. I love getting the email each morning telling me what is on my calendar for the day. The best part is the ability to connect with your team, motivate each other with encouraging comments, and cheer each other on with high fives.

It’s fantastic!

I love seeing my full calendar and checking the workouts off the list. There are different workouts to chose from and a variety of lengths and equipment needed. The different trainers are fantastic and I haven’t found a workout I haven’t liked.

M5fitness calendar The nutrition videos have been very informative and a fantastic way to brush up or learn a little more. M5 fitness nutrition

I also have gotten so much out of the coaching videos! I should watch them all daily. I especially need to re-watch the one about Fostering Commitment and Preventing Relapse.

The most important choice you will make is always the next one

I love that! The most important choice you’ll make is always the next one.

The encouragement along the way is fantastic. You set goals and see a chart of your progress. When you complete an activity it posts to the board and the other team members can comment or give you a virtual high five. I love that part – it’s so fun to encourage others.

M5 fitness goal tracking

So, since my month with the How Does She team is running out, I thought I’d take a chance and see if anyone would be interested in forming our own accountability team. It’s $20 a month, which is so worth the tools and support. Plus, once you join you get $10 for everyone you invite to join, so your monthly charge would be zero if you invited two friends.

What do you think?

Let’s do this together! Once you set up an account on the M5 Fitness site, add in the code 241 to join my team!

Besides the Refer a Friend bonus, I have gotten no compensation for this post. I’ve just really enjoyed my experience and want another team to keep it going. Join me!

HUGE Giveaway to Keep You Healthy and Active!

I can’t even tell you how excited I am for this! Lisa, from The Skinny on Health, put together a fantastic prize pack and I’m so excited to be a part of the amazing group making it happen.

Ok, for real, I’m more than a little sad I can’t win, but beyond happy one of you can!!

Health and fitness goodie bag giveaway

 

The box is full of our favorite products out there, like custom fitness DVDs, vitamins, workout supplements, super pretty jewelry and hair accessories, exercise equipment, and more, from companies like Grace Lace and Iron, PiYo Hardcore, Designer Whey, Vega Sport, Dr. Josh Axe, Shapeology, My Beauty Tea, Bach, Lorna Jane, Shred, Manitoba Harvest, Smarty Pants, FabFitFun, and BuluBox! I told you, this box is AMAZING.

Here are the amazing bloggers making this Health and Fitness Goodie Bag possible, you can enter to win it below! :)

Health and fitness goodie bag giveaway bloggers

- The Skinny on Health -

Lisa is a masters in public health nutrition and soon-to-be registered
dietitian with a passion for healthy living, delicious food, and
enjoying fitness. The Skinny on Health uses science to explain how to
live a healthy life to the fullest, with tips and tricks for weight
loss, glowing skin, productivity, cooking, and everything in between!

- Exploring Domesiticity -

Just a Momma trying to learn those domestic skills she never quite got
the hang of, and now trying to learn to be a healthy role model for
her two little ones. With kiddos who ask for broccoli and to do
squats, I think they’re doing better than I am!

- Style + Greens -

Style+Greens (formerly Illustrated Nutrition) is a lifestyle blog
unlike any other– with a focus on health and design. Kathryn is a
future registered dietitian with a love for nutrition and a lifelong
creative passion for fashion and interior design. Achieving a healthy
lifestyle doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your style in the
process!

- Hungry Healthy Girl -

I love to cook and bake healthy meals and snacks for my family. I
started blogging as a way to share my love for healthy cooking and
fitness. Come check out my blog for delicious, yet nutritious eats!

- Health Be a Hippie -

Health Be a Hippie is a blog dedicated toward empowering women to
embrace their true and best selves through natural, nutritious, and
active living.

- Fitful Focus -

Fitful Focus began as a way to document my journey to lead a healthier
life. The name stems from the three things I believe anyone needs to
achieve that challenge: getting FIT, keeping my tummy FULL of whole
food goodness, and staying FOCUSed on my goal of leading that
healthier, happier life. Over the last two years, I’ve lost 20 pounds,
became a marathoner, completed a Tough Mudder, beasted p90x and
Insanity, and am starting to get more into strength training and yoga.
I love trying new workouts, foods, and products and sharing all my
finds with everyone else. I’ve starting creating my own recipes,
sharing things that motivate me, and have met so many others that
inspire me and hold me accountable as I continue along this amazing
journey. I’m no longer dreaming about a better life, I’m living it!

- Lauren Lives Healthy -

Lauren Lives Healthy is a healthy living blog where Lauren shares her
tips and tricks for staying healthy in the Bay Area. She shares quick
and satisfying recipes, training tips for half marathons and
triathlons, and motivation to help you reach your health goals.

Let’s Do This! Good luck everyone!

Health and fitness goodie bag giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway