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Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Say Goodbye to Your Pre-baby Body

Putting pressure on yourself to get your body back to how it looked before you got pregnant is holding you back.

That's right. I said it.

We moms get so fixated on our bodies and what it isn't doing or what it isn't looking like. We stand for what surely amounts to hours, looking at ourselves in the mirror. We tug and pull at skin, find stretch marks we never saw before, question whether our boobs will forever be deflated after breastfeeding, have bellies that can't quite seem to get flat ... the list goes on.

And after these agonizing self-critiquing episodes, we usually walk away from the mirror, depressed, and throw on something that darn sure better not be form-fitting. "Flowy and loose," you tell yourself. A must. Heaven forbid we be reminded of our jiggles and fleshy parts as we navigate our days.

But what if we just forgot about what we used to look like?

What if we used this as an opportunity to be a new version of ourselves? Whatever that might be. Imagine how much better we would feel. Gone would be the pressure of looking the same way you did in those/that _____ (you fill in the blank). Right?

Because let's face it. Even if we do get back down to our pre-pregnancy weight, our bodies are not the same. For me, my stomach has loose skin. I have crazy veins in my legs that I didn't have before. My muscle tone darn sure isn't what it used to be -- to name a few.

After both of my pregnancies, I was so happy to finally hit that number. Geez, why do we put so much value on a stupid number? I did it. And I know better. But there's just something so satisfying about hitting that silly number. It's like a soap bubble that jumps into the air while you're doing dishes, and you catch it in your hand. Ha! Gotcha!

But oftentimes once we hit that number, we are immediately still dissatisfied because our bodies are different. Maybe it's the skin. Maybe it's the cellulite that wasn't there before. Maybe your posture sucks now. Or maybe your joints are all jacked up. Or maybe ... any of a number of things.

I'd like to suggest we look at pregnancy as an opportunity for us to become new versions of ourselves. And with each pregnancy, is another chance to be renewed.

I'm not suggesting you don't work hard to lose the baby weight. By all means work to do that, if that's what's important to you. But if it's not important to you, don't put pressure on yourself to force something you don't even want.

What's great is that we all have the freedom to decide what's best for us.

I'm just encouraging all of us moms to be kinder to ourselves. Don't stare at yourself in the mirror in shame or disappointment. Instead, embrace it. All of it. For you are an awesome woman who had a child and that-- all of that-- is beautiful.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Chocolate Avocado Mousse

Looking for a dessert that doesn't leave you feeling riddled with guilt? If you're new to this avocado spin on traditional mousse, the sound of avocado as the main ingredient may make you say, "euw." Don't worry, I understand. I was a little skeptical at first too.

But you're in for a major surprise -- it tastes nothing like avocado. If you're vegan or looking to reduce dairy from your diet, this is perfect. Swap out the dairy for heart-healthy avocado and enjoy this delicious treat!


1 large ripe avocado
1/4 cup almond milk
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup honey*
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch of sea salt
Optional toppings: assorted fruit, coconut flakes, whipped cream (or vegan whipped cream)

Directions: In a blender or food processor, add the almond milk, avocado, cocoa powder, honey, vanilla and salt. Blend for two minutes until smooth. Add to serving dishes and chill in the refrigerator for a minimum of 20 minutes. Then add toppings of choice (or have it plain) before serving.

*For a sugar free option, omit honey and use 15-20 drops of liquid stevia instead. You can also do a combo, say 1/2 tbsp of honey and sweeten with liquid stevia to taste.


Thursday, April 9, 2015

Quest Protein Chips Review

When it comes to new health food products, I'm a bit of a skeptic. I tend to raise my eyebrow, and wonder, "what's the catch?"

The possibilities of how I will have been duped take over my mind -- "It must taste awful." "OK, it's high in protein, but watch, it'll have loads of fat, carbs or whatever." "Oh wait, I know, it's full of sugar." "Yup, that's it. Gotcha!"

Enter Quest Protein Chips.

I first saw them on the Today Show with a bunch of other new fitness products on the market, about eight months ago. I made a mental note to try them -- but of course no rush, because you know, there's inevitably something going to be wrong with them.

Well, I finally got around to trying them this week. And only because they were right front of me on a display case situated next to the kids club at my gym. And because I drop my kids off there so I can go workout, I was going to bump right into them. (Good marketing there. Target those parents -- because what mom or dad doesn't want to reach for a bag of chips while dealing with the stresses of parenthood? Right?)

To my surprise, they weren't bad. I got the BBQ flavored, but there were also sour cream & onion, sea salt, cheddar & sour cream, and salt & vinegar. Each bag is 120 calories, has 5 grams of carbs and 21 grams of protein. Can you believe that? Let me repeat. 5 grams of carbs, and 21 grams of protein.


I will say, they aren't delicious. But they aren't bad either. They're kind of tasty if you stop thinking about what real potato chips taste like. They are definitely a better alternative to a regular bag of chips that has zero protein and 20-30 grams of carbs.

The one downside is the cost. For a small bag, they were $2.99. That's not a price I will pay very often. But if I'm feeling a craving for salty chips that won't destroy my diet, I certainly will hand over three bucks.

Overall impression: thumbs up. Good job Quest. Good job.

If you'd like to check out my video version of this review, click below. Go ahead and be entertained by my not-so-good-but-who-cares dance moves.