Tuesday, August 25, 2015

When Life Gives you Lemons...

...Make lemon water!

I grew up in a Hispanic household drinking café con leche on a regular basis. For those of you unfamiliar with cuban coffee, I'll let Ralphie May explain:

So, back to lemon water.

It's fantastic!

Among the endless benefits of drinking lemon water - one of them is the burst of energy you get, which helps you ween off caffeine dependence. If you watched Ralphie May explain the affect of Cuban coffee, I think you'll understand how powerful lemon water actually is - especially when I say that it works! I've been able to cut back my caffeine intake without the pesky headaches I was getting.

I won't pretend to know all the benefits of lemon water, so I'll just leave this here for your edification:


Sunday, August 23, 2015


Food: the quintessential vehicle for absorbing nutrients into our bodies. So we can read, breathe, run, sleep and keep sustaining life on this bountiful planet.

Since the start of the industrialized society - food has taken a rotten turn. It's been tampered with, re- engineered, over processed, redistributed and wasted. Documentaries like Food Inc. started to peel back the facade of our concept of oversupply of food. The reality is that many of us first worlder's actually suffer from nutrient deficient diets.

I'm lucky that others have paved the way to a food awakening and revolution. My household can now join the collective conscious movement around consuming whole foods, natural foods, as well as supporting local and sustainable. Sharing some of the meals I've made recently (all gluten-free and homemade, and try to keep it all organic/local.)

Pad Thai: Prep before it all came together. I used shrimp. Love these colors

Protein and Green: Homemade Kale chips, Zucchini Parm Fritters, Honey Garlic chicken.

Korean Bibimap Bowl: Rice, Brussel Sprouts, Carrots, Spinach, Bugolgi Beef, Mushrooms and Egg Here's the recipe I used.

Hispanic Brunch: Rice and Beans, Tostones, Eggs with a side of avocado and grapes. Super simple 
Gluten-free Oatmeal w/ Almond Milk, blueberries and walnuts

Oven-baked Avocado w/ smoked salmon.

Kale Quinoa salad w/ Avocado, Pomegranate seeds  w/ homemade lemon vinaigrette.

Friday, August 14, 2015

HONY in Pakistan

There are many times I get the urge to share something that has moved me - and I quickly pull up this blog before I forget. For the last couple of weeks I've been completely captivated by Brandon's latest Humans of New York posts on Pakistan. To the point, that some stories have nearly brought me to tears. Or I can't control a smile after reading one of the posts. I've re-read my favorites multiple times. The landscape is so breathtaking.  And the comments are so touching. People from across the world expressing how happy they are to see their country portrayed in a non-war setting. People realizing how incredibly beautiful Pakistan actually is. It really is beautiful.

I came across this Business Insider post on their favorite posts from Pakistan thus far, which are EXACTLY the posts that really resonated with me as well, so I thought I'd share.

Since the Business Insider released that article, HONY in Pakistan concluded with, arguably, the most uplifting story yet. Through the page's awareness of the cruelty of the brick kilns in Pakistan, the HONY community helped raise over $2 million to help Fatima's efforts to defend and protect captives of this industry.

Even if you're not a supporter of social media, or haven't been on Facebook recently - if you're human - this is for you.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Consistently Inconsistent: Building New Habits

Being consistent hasn't always been my forte. Which is a shame, because it's the key ingredient in losing weight and getting into shape (and for a blog. Note my last entry was in Feb ;).)

But I digress. After trying a couple of different diets and workout routines for the last couple of years (post moving in with my boyfriend-now-husband and gaining weight) I finally cracked the right mix for me.

Intermittent Fasting

Loosing or gaining weight is 80% diet they say. Not sure who they is, or if they is right, but over the last couple of years, I've been weaning off of processed foods (mainly because of my gluten-free allergy) including all cereals, chips, pastas, breads etc. I've tried an all-Keto diet and my body was like: NO. So I've stuck to the cardinal rule, of eating what mother nature provides.

That aside, I wasn't particularly loosing  or gaining weight. I tried using MyFitness Pal App (on and off) and counting calories just made me hungrier because my brain felt lit was being food deprived... which in turn made me crave all sorts of unhealthy stuff. Definitely not sustainable long-term.

When I turned 26 earlier this year, I was determined to make a fundamental change. Essentially, I needed to build a new habit. I came across the idea of Intermittent fasting. Particularly I found this schedule of working out as soon as you wake up and not eating until noon and having your last meal before 8 p.m. My diet was pretty solid, it was just a matter of eating at the right times. This new eating habit has been pretty easy for me considering I never have time to eat breakfast anyway. The key was to workout in the morning to propel my body into burning it's own fat to avoid being crazy hungry before my first meal.

6 months in - I consider this a success.

Fitness Blender

Praise be to the free full-length workout videos by the amazing Kelly and Daniel. Not only are they high-quality, free and list all calories burned- but they even have workout schedules you can buy for like $6.00. Worth!

They make it insanely easy for you to follow-along, play your own music, customize your workout schedule and there is minimal equipment required (mainly a mat, and some dumbbells and maybe the occasional medicine ball.) Primarily, they focus on body weight workouts and do a great job of providing calorie burn estimates, and easy search function for working out target areas (as seen below.)

Highly recommend. Again, this is the sustainable combination that worked for ME, but I'd say there are numerous free diet and workout guides for your personal preference. I found a couple of other free workout vids available on YouTube as well for your perusal. I'll likely upload some before and after pics in upcoming posts. So far, I'm down 10 lbs! Good luck!