What The Heck To Eat When Away From Home?

Some of the food I ate and was surrounded by on my travels 

This last weekend I was in Cleveland, well outside Cleveland, for my Registered Yoga Teacher Training. It was a weekend of both intense learning and physical activity. It was amazing and also both mentally and physically exhausting and exhilarating. I did multiple hours of physical activity for three days. And I gained 3 pounds!

I know what everyone is going to say, it’s muscle, it’s water, it’s imaginary. Or don’t get on the scale, there’s no point in getting on the scale, scales lie etc. And fine, I get it however for me the scale is my unit of measurement, I can wear my yoga pants for about a thirty pound weight fluctuation so they aren’t really a great tool. The point is I’ve done a few of these trainings and I ALWAYS gain weight every time. So what’s the deal?

Well first thing, I didn’t plan at all and I left with two protein bars and an apple on me so of course I didn’t have enough to eat. I was hungry most of the time and I overspent everywhere I went. Even water! Which at least in the end I bought 99 cent water gallons and drank that. I was dealing with two issues: wanting to conserve money and wanting to eat healthy. Here’s the thing there are ways to make it happen but most of the time you have to chose which one is more important money or health?

These are the bad choices I made, I had I was exhausted on Friday and I had French Fries from McDonalds. Then on my drive back Sunday I was exhausted and tired and hungry and I ate chicken nuggets as well as fries at Wendy’s. I felt disgusting and sad.

Oh and Friday night I ate a dark chocolate bar with pretzels. Saturday I ate a gluten free pumpkin donut. Both of these items were worth it but you can see why I gained weight can’t you? I’m honestly not sure what else I ate but it wasn’t good. And nothing is more upsetting than returning from a weekend of physical activity only to see the scale go up.

So next time I need a plan of action. I also need a change of mindset. Before this I would feel sorry for myself about the foods that I didn’t eat, but here’s the thing I’m making CHOICES. I’m choosing to eat healthy. I’m choosing to lose weight and to be an example of a health lifestyle. That means I can’t just eat every donut or piece of chocolate and I DO need a plan.

I have three more chances over the next four months to succeed at this and I need to make it happen and really show up for myself. I’ll be writing about my journey, the struggles and successes and I’ll let you know how it goes.

Let me know if you have any tips for eating when away from home in the comments below!


5lb Holiday Weight Gain Horror

Donuts = Sad Sugar Rush

Yesterday, was  Halloween and that marks the beginning of the Holiday Weight Gain!! (Cue the music from Psycho!) Studies vary on exactly how much weight the typical American gains but it seems to average anywhere from 5-9 pounds of gained weight between Halloween and New Years Day! The worst part of this Holiday Gain is that most people never take it off. That means that over 10 years you stand to gain between 50-90 pounds just from what you ate between Halloween and New Years every year.((

I for one do not intend to gain any weight this holiday season. In fact I am in the process of leaning up and I see no reason why with some focus and planning I can’t accomplish that.

Wellness Wisdom Wednesday

(Fine, I’m publishing this on Thursday, so I’m late. I got busy people! )

healthy cookie
Homemade Protein Cookie= Healthy Alternative

Try to be mindful of what you’re eating and the decisions that you’re making.

My personal choice this year is to indulge only on the actual holiday. This means I haven’t been eating candy all month and I wont be eating any mini snickers tomorrow morning or throughout November

Decide where and when it is worth it and keep it to a minimum.

I actually only had two bites of this donut for the photos and to be honest it was WAY too sweet. I have been eating very little sugar lately and now I can absolutely taste it when I do take a bite. But three more bites and I’m sure I would have gone on a full-blown sugar binge.

baking .jpg
Healthy Baking Ingredients 

Instead I went home and baked some PB cookies with protein, a few chocolate chips and only a minimal amount of honey in there, no sugar. I’ll be honest, they DO NOT taste like a traditional chocolate chip cookie. But they do help to satisfy that chocolate craving as well as that Halloween treat desire. Not to mention with the protein I will stay fuller longer. I’m noticing many positive benefits the more I cut out sugar, so for me this was the right choice. Also, maybe you stop craving these foods when you take away the sugar. The cookies were, ok, not great not bad but okay. It’s easy to not overindulge in something that is just ok.

Make whatever choices are right for you during the holidays. Just make sure they are choices and you aren’t mindlessly eating mini candies that if you are honest with yourself don’t even really taste all that good.

Have you gained holiday weight in the past and realized you never lost it? Comment with any tricks you use to help avoid that dreaded holiday weight gain.


I’ve been obsessively watching the latest season of Younger with Sutton Foster and Hilary Duff. Season Five just released onto Hulu and I am currently in a major binge.

At 42 is it time to hope I look Younger?

In case you haven’t seen the show before, here is the basic premise: a freshly divorced woman of about 40 finds herself single and in need of employment. Prior to marriage she was an editor and she wants to get back into the book editing business. However, that ruthless business (normally publishing is considered dull but not on this show) feels she’s too old for an entry level job and so instead of continuing her search she pretends to be, wait for it….Younger! (I believe she pretends to be in her mid 20’s. They have Duff cast as being around her same age, though Duff herself is 31 Everyone is younger on Younger.)

Sutton Foster and Hilary Duff Both Look Fantastic!

Ok, so let me first start by saying I really like this sort of dumb show. I think Foster is fun and personable, probably all the traits that made her a huge Broadway star. I spend too much time envying Duff’s glow and the supporting cast includes Debbie Mazar enough said. Part of me watches it for the sort of sad story lines and part of me just watches it because the clothing is great and I love looking at the clothing and the imaginary lifestyle.

Would it be easier if I said I was Younger?

That said, as I hit my 8th episode of Season 5 (I’ve watched all the seasons) I started thinking about what it means to be a woman over 40. Foster is currently playing 41 (she’s 43) and she’s passing in the show as being 27. First I ask, REALLY? I mean I am a very fortunate woman that whenever someone finds out my age they seem to be genuinely surprised but I highly doubt they think I’m in my 20’s. Foster looks great but next to Duff, who is IN her early 30’s, she looks well…Older. Not old, not bad, not anything negative but she does in fact look older, because she is. Is there anything wrong with both wanting to look younger as well as being proud of your age? I’m pretty damn proud of how I look at 42 but I am also glad that people don’t say, yup you look 42. I’m not sure why because I know a ton of HOT 40 something women. In fact I look the best I’ve looked in my adult life at 42 so I can only be excited for the years to come but that doesn’t mean that getting older is easy or aging is easy or that I feel awesome all the time when I realize I am not 30 years old.


In defense though of the characters situation I oddly enough find myself relating to her more than I realized. I’m not pretending to be in my 20’s but I am in my 40’s and beginning to attempt to change my career in a direction that is filled with much Younger people, fitness. So far I have been fortunate and no one has seemed to be put-off by my age. That said I still think about it. I wonder if they think I’m too old, or not in good enough shape (not knowing the journey) and also possibly they are wondering why now? All I can say is why not now?

Ok, I need to get back to my binging (tv binging is healthy, food binging not so much) of Younger. I’d love to hear what you guys think about aging, if you watch Younger, if so what you think about it, the challenges of aging, or even better I’d love to hear your own stories!

Xoxo Heather


Self-Care Day Declared

Self care day
Girl Power Mug and a Magazine= Self Care Day

What does Self-Care Even Mean?

I sit here on my couch, sipping my coffee writing this while episode 3 billion of Keeping Up with the Kardashians plays on my tv. (Kardashians apparently is so common of a word my spell check doesn’t question it.) and I’m thinking about what Self-Care means and what it should mean.

Yesterday, I had what was possibly one of the worst days ever in my “career” and I decided to take what I formally would have called a mental-health day but am now identifying as a self-care day.  What’s the difference? Well yes, my mental-health is taxed (hello wake up call! If you consider just getting in your car and never coming back it’s probably a bad sign. Take this advice for both jobs and relationships) I’ve decided to think of my “sick” day today as a Self-Care Day, I am doing it because taking care of myself is the MOST important thing I can do on a daily basis. Mental-health day seems to imply a weakness and Self-Care says no I am putting myself first. I’m approaching it with positivity and also my own personal wellness in mind. Hence I’m not ordering a giant pizza and shoving Doritos into my face (though that does sound fun).

What I intend to do with my day:

  1. Watch lots of Kardashians. Think about how I need to do a better job with my makeup like a Kardashian. Wonder about Kardashian butts.
  2. Work out: take time for my personal practice of Buti. Enjoy not feeling rushed to get to a job that I don’t even want to be at in the first place. (If you’re dragging your feet to get there, it’s a sign.)
  3. Drink too much coffee.
  4. Take a nice long bath (while watching the Kardashians).
  5. Spend too much time on the internet (probably researching Kardashians and Kardashian makeup, clothing, workouts, offspring, travel destinations).
  6. Read things I’m interested in reading.
  7. Focus on steps that take me towards the lifestyle I want to live.
  8. Try to not dwell on the fact that I will inevitably return to work tomorrow.
  9. Nap (when the Kardashians bore me I’m sure I’ll pass out).
  10. And if I’m honest, feel a little sad that tomorrow I must go back.


Every Day Should Be Self-Care Day

How are you caring for yourselves beyond the occasional “sick” day? I believe that every day should be a self-care day. How you take care of yourself every day is what leads to your happiness and your well-being. And this is all-encompassing. It goes beyond working out and eating healthy or getting a manicure. Though all those things are important. Are you showing up for yourself by making healthy food choices? By working out even when you might rather watch This is Us? Are you looking for a different job if the one you are at drains the life out of you? Are you getting enough sleep? Are you putting yourself first? All these things make the difference in this one short life you get to live.

It is not selfish to take care of yourself first. If you put the time and energy into yourself you will be rewarded.  Sometimes that isn’t easy for me to remember. But here I am sitting on the couch, drinking my coffee and feeling good.

Have a great day!





Diagnosis: Old Eyes

Welcome to 40 where you can no longer read anything:

With Glasses I can Read!!

Truths about aging no one bothers to tell you

It’s pretty clear to me now that anything I feel smug about in life will come back to bite me in the @ss. I used to feel so superior to everyone who needed to wear glasses because I could see and read things close up, things far away you name it I could read it and see it. And then I got old.

It started slowly as most aging seems seem to do. I remember sitting at Pret-A-Manger, (Oh how I miss the healthy fast-food you could find in NYC) having lunch with my best friend and I wanted to read the label on what was, let’s be honest most likely a brownie, and I had to pull this brownie wrapper further and further away from my face just to read it.

Being able to read it would now seem like a gift. In the past three years or so I have kissed reading any packages without glasses on, goodbye! Don’t even get me started on reading a credit card. I have to have glasses, extremely good light and utilize my sense of touch. It’s insane. Have you tried to read the phone number off a credit card? It’s practically One Point Font.

So now I have my new Warby Parker glasses. BTW Warby Parker is awesome and everyone should get their glasses. They have a store in the Summerset Mall so I was able to try on 100 pairs, approximately, and then of course choose the first pair I tried on.

But first I had to get an eye exam. Given that I actually have vision insurance, and also the sadly low rate of pay I receive means I spend my life attempting to utilize every last benefit dollar I have. (No sick day goes unused!) Here is what I learn from my ophthalmologist that might be of benefit to all:

Most people become far-sighted as they age.

This has caused me to often say, please will you hold this paper across the room from me so that I can read it, thanks. Apparently, our eyes lose their ability to change focus as quickly as they did when they were younger. Diagnosis: Old Eyes

Light will make a difference.

I noticed this when I was able to read a book without wearing glasses while sitting in my car on a very sunny day. It felt like a miracle moment as I sat there reading and charging my phone. Oh how I took the ability to read easily for granted.

It will keep getting worse, but how much each year no one knows!

So apparently my eyes will just continue to give up. They could get a lot worse one year or stay the same for a couple of years. Apparently it’s a fun game of wait and see! My doctor did reassure me that around 50 it will tapper off and I wont continue to lose my vision abilities. Woohoo, I wont be blind! I figure this sets me up to enter menopause at exactly the same time I no long can read anything without glasses.  I will presumably have even more hair on my face but will be completely unable to see them without my glasses. I suppose I should start calling them “My Readers.” But I refuse to sound like I am 100.

So here I am wearing glasses and able to read things! I probably need one of those old lady chains to wear around my neck because my current life involves taking them on and off about 700 times a day. I need to be more aware and use my Fitbit hand while doing so. At least I deserve a few steps added to my total.


Anyone else losing their vision with age? What have you learned about aging that no one warned you about? Drop a note in the comments and let me know.



21 Day Sugar Detox Disaster

Days 1-7 UGH

For the Love of Chocolate

Day One:

Easy, really too easy. I had food prepped I was ready to go. I was excited. I didn’t miss anything. My energy levels felt normal for a Monday.

Day Two:

Things start to get complicated. The morning starts fine. I’m not feeling hungry and though it’s not on the 21-day Sugar Detox I’m using this detox more as a way to jump-start my butt into dieting/ weight loss better eating mode. This means finally giving up processed foods. I’m avoiding even those ones that technically can make the cut for 21DSD and instead attempting to cook as much as possible. I delay eating my breakfast until about 9 at work. Then I am starving at lunch time and eat around 12. However, I’m not in the mood for the spaghetti squash I’ve packed and I eat most of it but the feel very tired of it quickly and toss part of it. The chicken sausage I packed, I devour. Immediately after lunch I want sweets. I drink water and try not to think about it.

2PM and I want to die. My coworker is on a weight loss boot camp program and we sit and talk about how we want coffee and are just dying. I can have coffee on my program but I don’t have any with me at work.

4 PM I have an hour before I need to leave to teach Buti. I drink a coffee and a huge glass of water and feel amazing. I start to eat part of the sweet potato I had saved from last nights dinner and I just don’t feel hungry. I decide, why eat when I’m not hungry. Though I do worry about having enough energy to teach my class.

7PM My class went amazing I had tons of energy and now I need to go to Trader Joe’s to get the most affordable Olive Oil there is. Inside TJs I realize I’m famished. My first instinct is to buy chocolate. I remind myself that’s a no. As well as protein bars which have all kinds of sweetners in them. I walk through the chip aisle trying to tell myself that I could have plantain chips technically. Then I remind myself I am changing my healthy junk food ways. I end up buying some cheese and some turkey meat and eat it like a mad woman on my drive home.

Day Three: 

I wake up not hungry again. At dinner last night , post meat and cheese eating in the car, I noticed I don’t have much of a taste for either vegetables or carbs. I just want protein! This morning feels the same and I’m struggling to pack my lunch because nothing sounds very good. Do I only like food when it doesn’t have sugar in it?

Lunch time: Hunger went from no hunger to HUNGER. I went into the teacher’s lounge to heat my lunch and a teacher was having pizza. I nearly had a melt down. As soon as I could I rushed out with my food and back to my classroom.

After work I stop by my mom’s and there is a pie there! My sister keeps offering me pie. My mom suggests I take it home to my boyfriend. Come on people! We all know if I took it home he’d never see that pie! He wouldn’t even know that pie ever existed. I resist. My mom comments that I seem crabby. Love you too MOM!!

Dinner: I have to return to work for an Open House that none of my student’s parents attend. I sit at my desk and eat a small meal. In the hallway are the cookies for parents. I am seriously tempted to eat them and they are crappy cookies I’d never eat, like Chips A’hoy. The struggle is real people.

Day Four:

Breakfast is chicken sausage and half of a potato. It’s really good but most food doesn’t even sound good to me at the moment.

At lunch all I can think about is how I feel both hungry and don’t want to eat anything. I spend some time on Instagram and see a dietician’s posting that shows two 400 Calorie options the first is a Snickers the second is a huge salad with avocado, chicken etc. All I can think is “I’d rather have the snickers.”

I stop by my mom’s house again after work. This time I take a piece of pie for my boyfriend. I text him that I want his pie so bad that I could cry. I tell him he better eat his pie before I get home from teaching my Buti class.

Day Five:

It’s Friday morning so I am happy no matter what. I’ve lost no weight. Zero pounds. What is the point of this?

I’m feeling tired of ALL foods I am allowed to eat. Maybe this is the key to weight loss, food boredom. I actually want vegetables less than I did before. For breakfast I have two eggs and some potatoes from last nights dinner. It’s ok. Food for fuel, whatever.

Later at Costco I keep avoiding all the free snacks. I am just so hungry with zero desire to eat anything. I go home and don’t even bother to eat dinner. I pass out at 8.

Day 6- OVER IT!

So, so, so hideously over it. I can’t even begin to describe this feeling of being over it. I mean WTF? I want an apple a stinking apple to survive on. I haven’t lost any weight and I’m actually eating less healthy than before because the idea of eating vegetables makes me feel sick.

At this point I have lost zero pounds and endured way, way too much torture. I debate sticking to it. I text my boyfriend all kinds of reasons why I should and shouldn’t do it and then I give in and accept reality, this program is just not in any way realistic for me.

What I learned

Well, not so much that I like sweets. I knew that already. But I did learn that weight loss is more than just giving up processed foods and sweetners. I nee

Continue reading “21 Day Sugar Detox Disaster”

Sugar is in Everything

Yummy yummy sugar

21-Day Sugar Detox

My boyfriend hates sugar. Really, he is always reading the sugar content on things and complaining if it has sugar in it. It reminds me of when everyone knew the grams of fat in their foods. Back when fat was the enemy and ironically we were all getting fatter because we started eating more sugar.   His obsession with sugar has had an impact on me and now I find myself worrying about consuming too much sugar.

If you haven’t seen any of the documentaries on the current amount of sugar consumption in the U.S. I suggest you do so, soon. That Sugar Film  on Amazon, is really entertaining while also being very scary when you start to think about the amount of sugar that is consumed by most Americans daily. Since watching this film I have cut out my daily chocolate intake. It was hard and during PMS times it is still kind of impossible not to consume. I do feel better, but I haven’t lost much weight from it, a couple pounds, which isn’t nothing, but right now I have a goal of around 30 pounds. That’s to my dream weight range, but you know what I want to live my dream!

Detoxing from Sugar for 21-Days

21 Day Detox
So excited to Sugar Detox and my hair is showing it!

Enter 21-Day Sugar Detox Daily Guide by Diane Sanfilippo. You might know of Sanfilippo as a co-host of the popular Balanced Bites podcast. In this book she’s broken all the detox steps down, day by day with beautiful pictures, helpful tips and lots of recipes. One I was so inspired by I started to make that day.

My hope is that I will not only get some of the added sugars out of my life but also that I’ll lose some pounds while doing so.


Currently, I’m in the pre-detox phase. Sanfilippo says that a key to success is taking a 7 day period prior to the detox to get ready. Though my tendency is to just jump right in, I do want to be successful at this and I’m pretty sure I can survive 21-Days doing this. So I’m going slowly. My plan is to begin Monday September 10th, so currently I’m 5 days pre-detox. It feels like I still have a lot of time. I’m attempting to not go crazy on the sugar before I begin. Right now my biggest fear is this is set to land me sugar free next time I’m PMS. BEWARE! This could get ugly. That said, I’m also finding myself already using the tools. I had just bought some Ranch dressing, and the second ingredient was sugar! Yuck. And it did taste too sweet, so I tossed it. There’s a recipe for Ranch in the book but I’m not sure if I want to buy all of the spices needed for the various recipes. Maybe slowly over time. Sanfilippo does sell her spices but at $16 a bottle I feel they’re a little too pricey for my tastes.

So here I am, five days to detox and I haven’t eaten one cookie today! I find that a success.

Has anyone else tried a sugar detox? Or a detox of any kind? If so tell me how it went.