Hi guys! How is your week going so far? I can’t believe it is almost August. Where did the summer go?! Okay it’s obvs not done yet – I need at least one more scoop of pralines and cream before that happens. So I saw my doctor on Monday and got some really promising news re: my knee. Looks like my rest, swimming and icing worked well :) The inflammation is almost down and I should be back full force soon… yay! I’m going to CrossFit this morning, spinning tomorrow, resting and then testing out a run on Saturday. Keep your fingers crossed!

Also on Monday: I completed my second exam and thus my second course in the first part of my program (I’m doing 7 courses in total – but after 4 course I will be a certified nutritionist). I honestly did not love this course (Nutrition Studies and Applications) as the content seemed to be a bit biased but I certainly learned a lot. I’m onto my next course which I am super excited about…

Sports Nutrition Course

After Sports Nutrition, I take Vegetarian Nutrition and once I complete (and pass) those exams I will be done the first part of my program and officially a certified nutritionist. I’m hoping to start seeing clients and getting things up and running at Honey Bee Health and Nutrition in January 2015. Do you like the prospective name? I will still be completing three more courses in order to further my learning and get a higher certification (RNCP) but that’s my plan so stayed tuned! Phew okay, enough nutrition talk.

About a month ago, I posted my new goals and since I have been too busy to photograph a pancake recipe (I’m sorry!) I am checking in about my goals today. I suck. Don’t hate me. Pancakes coming soon.

1. Don’t let the little stuff bother me. I want to start off by saying that some goals aren’t just “tick a box” when complete because they might never actually get “completed” – this goal falls into this category. What I mean to say is that I am certainly progressing in this area. Sure sometimes something as small as chipping a nail bugs me, but making a conscious effort to just “roll with the punches” has been really positive.

2. Compartmentalize. See above.

3. Cook with a new ingredient/food/spice every week. I’ve actually been pretty good at this. I think food variety is important in order to get all of your nutrients in, but you also don’t need to go overboard. YI’m totally okay with eating leftovers, food prepping and eating a ton of zucchini right now because it’s in season. But I’m also always looking to expand my palette.

I am all about coleslaw lately - I buy a pre-shredded package from the Healthy Butcher (yup, the lazy-way-out) and then heat up a mix of apple cider vinegar, white wine vinegar, honey, salt and pepper then pour it on the cabbage mix and stick it in the fridge. Easy, delish and good for digestion. I’ve also been randomly into red onions lately. Ever since grillin’ them on the skewers I’ve discovered a love for these guys. The red onions added some delicious flavor to this bowl of beef bacon, brussels sprouts and clementines. Brussels in bacon fat is heavenly.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

4. Work on my double-unders and pull-ups for 5 minutes, 5-7 days per week. Well maybe 5-7 days per week was a bit ambitious but I have been working on them. A little less so on the double-unders as of late because of my wonky knee, but my pull-ups are getting there. The band is feeling so much easier so I’m working on my kipping motion. Yes I hope to look like a dying fish doing pull-ups.

5. Stand up for myself. I should amend this to say: don’t be a pushover. I’ve had success with this a few different times. It is hard and I hate saying “no” but I’m learning that it’s necessary for my own sanity, well-being and overall health.

6. Eat more before dinner/eat bigger meals. This has actually been overall successful. As you saw on Monday, an extra afternoon snack has been working well to make sure I get enough of what I need and help curb some sugar cravings/night-time snacking. I still enjoy some fruit for dessert (been eating the most delicious raspberries that Lesley hand-picked) but snacking on some fruit is a bit different than feeling starving at 8pm and cue snack attack. I forget what night it was, but I totally demolished fruit nut and seed granola [recipe] and five spoonfuls of almond butter while standing in the kitchen.

JK Gourmet

Firstly, my stomach killed. (I friggin love nuts and seeds but the phytic acid in them hates me). Secondly, I went back through what I ate that day and realized it wasn’t enough food. Therefore: eat.all.the.food. I should have had more of dinner but more beef and kale did not sound appetizing. I think (no, I know) that my calorie counting past led me to have a mentality of “saving calories” for dessert later in the day. No, no, no. Eating more food earlier has been soooo much better but obvs still working on this. I also want to work on incorporating/trying some more nutrient-dense foods in general… need to get liver back into the rotation.

7. Practice positive self talk. Definitely another work in progress. But, I think this reminder is fitting.

Consistency not Perfection

8. Find new running routes/running buddy. Since I haven’t really been running, this goal has been sucking a little. I have some new ideas for routes (I want to run along the water while it is still nice out) and I actually connected with another Saucony 26 Strong cadet who is from Toronto! A friend is also training for a marathon so we are going to coordinate some runs in the coming weeks.

9. Swim. Yup! Twice this past weekend is pretty great for me. I plan on getting in the water again on Friday and hopefully Sunday too. Dare I say that I am actually starting to like it… or at least like how it is making me feel. Gosh, my dad is going to have a field day with that comment.

10. Un-plugging. Soooo I haven’t been great at un-plugging. I really need to stop checking my phone before bed and aimlessly scrolling through Instagram. Who cares if I miss what someone ate earlier? Les – hold me to this.
Make it a great one!  

 

Questions of the day…

How are you doing with some of your goals or intentions?

What’s been the best part of your week so far?

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Hi guys! How was your weekend?

Remember when I used to do What I Ate Wednesday posts? I know you like snooping on my weekly eats but it’s been a hot minute (that means awhile) since I’ve shared a day of my plate – and boy how things have changed over the year. It’s crazy to look back on my meals/snacks. A bowl of steamed veggies with some beans for dinner? Oh my gosh, how that sounds unfathomable now… no wonder I was always hungry and nutrient-depleted.

I am constantly experimenting with my diet, my workouts and timing it all – trying to figure out what works best for me and my body. I made a few changes last week and actually found some success! So this is how things have been looking as of late. This is from Thursday.

I wake-up, (usually) eat a hard boiled egg (un-pictured), swallow my BCAAs, workout, swallow more BCAAs, then drink my post-workout smoothie [recipe]

Post workout smoothie

Shower, get dressed, drive to the office (or study at home) then have breakfast. I have been eliminating my sweet potato at breakfast (to hopefully curb my sugar cravings) and having a bigger tater at dinner… gotta get those carbs in!

Breakfast has been shredded chicken [recipe] zucchini and salsa all scrambled up….

Chicken zucc salsa

Breakfast part two is a hard boiled egg, baby carrots and broccoli.

Egg broccoli carrots

Then I work away or study or blog until it’s time for lunch: gound beef, egg, spaghetti squash, broccoli, spinach and an avocado.

Beef spag squash avo lunch

I have been having an extra snack (usually featuring protein and veggies) between lunch and dinner to get some more food in me throughout the day and hopefully eliminate my post-dinner snacking… it’s been mostly working! I thought the Epic Bar would be good for this but I really didn’t like the turkey flavor and it turned me off of trying another flavor. I’m sorry but they seriously look/smell like dog food. I’m not a jerky fan so maybe that’s why. Anyways, the smelly but delicious combo of tuna and pickles has been doing the trick.

Tuna and pickles

I drive home (if I’m at the office), relax a bit and make dinner. While I’m making dinner, I often nibble on cut up veggies – but Mom made pea soup (thanks Mom!) so I’ve been enjoyed that. Un-photogenic, but delish.

Pea soup

Dinner consists of meat/fish, green veg and starchy veg. Thursday was baked salmon [recipe], zucchini and sweet potato sauteed in coconut oil. Keep it simple.

Salmon zucc sweet potato

And that does it.

BUT… when I don’t eat enough prior to the evening I legit am hungry at 8 o’clock and cue snack attack. My body says “feed me” because it needs the food! Rather than handful after handful of nuts, seeds, whatever (which unfortunately hurts my stomach) I have been tryinggggg to condition myself to opt for more nutrient dense foods . It’s a work in progress but I’m trying. My biggest advice if you struggle with after-dinner-snacking, is to make sure you are getting what you need during the day.

That’s how things have been looking… but, sometimes (aka last night) my evening looks like this:

BQM Burger and Fries

Pralines and Cream

Burger and sweet potato fries from BQM Burger (delish) and pralines and cream from The Big Chill (also delish… obvs). Hashtag balance.

Here’s what my workouts looked like last week:

Monday

Spinning.

It’s been awhile since I’ve done a class at Spynga! I thought it would be a good way to ease back into my workouts after three days off.

 

Tuesday

CrossFit.

Stormtrooper


This WOD was a little intense. I scaled things back for my knee.

I did pike push-ups on the box for HSPU, the swings at 12kg, deadlifts at 85#, step-ups instead of box jumps and 50 air squats instead of double-unders. See I told you I scaled. Finished in 19:49 and still was drenched and exhausted.

 

Wednesday

CrossFit.

We worked on our dumb-bell snatches… eek they are hard!

Kanndy

Sean lovesssss combining WODs. I got 51 wall balls for the first part. I did a max effort row instead of Annie (knee) and got 1100m in the 6min – not bad! For Cindy, I did pull-ups with my trusty band and got through 6 rounds plus 3 push-ups. Pretty good morning.

 

Thursday

Spinning.

My mind (and training plan) said run but my body said spin. I listened to my body.

 

Friday

CrossFit.

We did a bunch of body strength and mobility work which was really good for my knee then did Helen.

Helen

I feel like I can be really good at Helen once I am a bit stronger and am in full force. I did the kettlebell swings as prescribed (35 lbs) but the pull-ups with a band of course. Finished in 14:04. Happy with that.

 

Saturday

Swimming! The exclamation mark is necessary because I’m excited that I got in the water again.

 

Sunday

Yesterday I planned on going for a walk but I really felt great so I went to Olympic Lifting.

Oly

That’s a lot of numbers right? I know. I went pretty light to work on my form. I also went light for the strength WOD:

Goliath

This was nasty.

Then I got back in the pool in the afternoon and did some more swimming. Who am I? It’s been helping my knee, I think.

Okay, sorry for the novel of a post. Hope you had a great weekend!

 

Questions of the day…

What did you do this weekend? Do you prefer a selection of eats or a day?

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Congrats to Gabrielle H. for winning the Swanson Vitamins gift certif. Please email me at littlehoneybeeblog@gmail.com to redeem your prize!

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Last week, I played basketball for the first time in what felt like forever. It was maybe a couple of months but that feels like forever for me. A bunch of guys were playing pick-up at a nearby court so I decided to join them. It was so much fun to run around again – definitely rusty but held my own. About 30 minutes in to playing, I jumped and landed a bit funny on my knee – the same knee that I hurt when training for my first half and the same knee that I still preventatively rehab. Knees suck. It felt a bit weird and wobbly but not painful so I played for another hour and a half, had fun and knocked down a few jumpers.

I got home, stretched, ate, iced and wore high compression socks to bed – to hopefully bring down any inflammation. Then I slept for 8 hours, got up, did my morning routine and went to CrossFit. I got to CrossFit and tried working on my double-unders. Ouch. That hurt. Then I tried jogging. Nope. Then I tried some kettle-bell swings. Heck no. Then I cried. Yup.

I totally felt like crap. It was one of those days where I just felt defeated. Like I failed myself and others around me because I was not 100%. Thankfully no-one let me cry alone. They re-assured me that it’s okay… these things happen. And they do. We are not perfect. It doesn’t make them less sucky but in the grand scheme of things: my silly knee is nothing in comparison to other problems. Sure it’s my problem but all you need to do is turn on CNN and put things in perspective.

Perspective

[Image source]

You know I’m a huge advocate for listening to your body. I am leaps and bounds better at doing this. A year ago, I would have pushed through the skipping or kettlebells. Last week, I did what was right to do and stopped but it is still an emotional struggle: I want to be able to do it all. Maybe I think I am indestructible. Maybe I think I am superhuman. I knew it would be stupid to run or workout while in Chicago so I didn’t pack my sneakers. I know my body needs time to heal but I am antsy. I love the feeling I get when I run or lift something kinda heavy or steal the ball from a guy who is 7 inches taller, 50 lbs heavier and well… a guy. When I see “10 miles” on our training schedule for Saturday July 19, I want to run those 10 miles. But I didn’t. And that’s sometimes hard.

When I cried at CrossFit, Sean gave me a big hug and told me this: consistency, not perfection. And he couldn’t be more right.

Overall, my marathon training has been going great and I have lots of time to prepare for the race. Overall, I eat a very nutritious diet but I eat ice-cream when I feel like it. Overall, I am very happy but sometimes I cry and feel crappy. I’m not perfect. I put a lot of my life out there for who the heck knows to see and read and judge and whatever. It’s sometimes scary and hard. I know you know I’m human and that it’s not always unicorns and rainbows but coming to terms with this myself is possibly the hardest part of it all. Telling the Internet that I’m running a marathon, that I love to eat “healthy”, go to CrossFit, feel comfortable in my own skin… is really scary (and impossible) if I aim for perfection. Because that is unattainable.

Consistency not Perfection

There are going to be bumps in the road and I need to come to terms with these bumps, embrace them, learn from them and move forward.

I have been trying to put a little less pressure on myself. My knee has been feeling a bit better so I’ve gone to CrossFit a few times this week but I have scaled the workouts. I wish I was doing them Rx. I didn’t run yesterday or Tuesday (heck I haven’t run in awhile) and I don’t think I will get my “long run” in this weekend and that’s hard for me to accept. I’m slowly learning to be okay with all of this. I am trying to focus on consistency and limit my negative self talk (one of my goals). I have instead been nourishing my body with delicious food and resting a bit more than usual. I have been trying not to get frustrated because my knee is not “perfect” yet. I know I need to take care of my body and I am trying to do that. I am seeing my doctor on Monday just in case. I need to remind myself that it’s (literally) a marathon and not a sprint.

And I also need to remind myself that I am striving for consistency, not perfection. And I want to remind you of that too.

 

 

No questions, just your thoughts. 

 

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Hi guys! Hope you are having a good week. Did you enter Monday’s giveaway? Don’t forget :)

So I know it’s Wednesday but I’ve yet to blog about my weekend in Chicago… and it was a good one! So here we go. I booked my flight to Chicago awhile ago to visit my friend Bonnie. Bonnie and I actually went to high school together but we didn’t actually become friends until college. Bonnie went to Emerson for grad school, I was there for undergrad. Yup, two girls from Toronto end up at the same small school and become friends in Boston. Lesley wanted to come to Chicago too so she came. Oh: this weekend was the first time Bonnie and Les met. Now they’re besties. I doubt you cared about any of that.

Bonnie picked us up from the airport on Friday afternoon and we got settled before heading downtown to Navy Pier. The pier is adorable. Yes tourist-y but amazing views of the city and of course the water.

Amy Les Navy Pier

Amy Bonnie Navy Pier

Amy Navy Pier Insta

We walked around for a bit before having dinner at City Porch (on the pier). It was yummy, the service was questionable, the company was wonderful. I got the chicken BLT (sans the bun) add sweet potato fries. Always add sweet potato fries.

City Porch Dinner

Then we went on Bonnie’s favorite attraction… the ferris wheel! Sooo fun. Loved it.

Ferris Wheel

We capped off the evening with a fabulous Architecture Boat Tour. It was amazing to see the city at night and we learned so much. Our tour guide was super knowledgable and even sounded like Richard Gere… kinda looked like him too.

Boat Tour1

Boat Tour2

Gorgeous views.

We made a delicious breakfast on Saturday morning at Bonnie’s apartment: scrambled eggs, avocado, tomato, watermelon, berries… perfection.

Saturday Breakfast

After breakfast, we hopped on the bus down Lakeshore Drive to Michigan Avenue. I couldn’t believe how BIG everything was. I felt tiny up against all of the huge buildings. I guess I didn’t expect Chicago to be that big. We walked down to Millenium Park to of course see the Bean! Really trippy. Really cool.

Amy Les Bean1

Les Bonnie Bean

Amy Wrigley Seats

Amy Les Bridge

After seeing a few sights, Les and Bonnie went to get deep dish pizza and I met Becky at Whole Foods - worked out perfectly. Yes, a blogger meet-up at Whole Foods is so cliche but Becky was kind enough to agree to it so I could shop for some “American products” I’ve been wanting to try.

Amy and Becky

We had a great time chatting, talking about marathon training – I know that if I lived in Chicago we’d run a lot and shop a lot together. I didn’t find everything I was looking for but did find Epic Bars (excited to try them!) and enjoyed a delish lunch from the hot bar.

Whole Foods Lunch

So great to meet you Becky :)

The rest of the day featured lots of shopping down Michigan Avenue. I didn’t buy anything… go me! Go budget!

For dinner, we got salads from Beezees.

Beezees Salad

But the real highlight was dessert.

Jeni's Ice Cream1

Jeni’s Ice Cream for a bit of a treat. I got “Brambleberry Crisp” on the top and “Brown Butter Almond Brittle” on the bottom. It was delicious. My stomach kinda hated me for it but oh well… so worth it.

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Sunday started off with an insane brunch at Avec. I’m so glad my sister is a foodie.

Avec4.

Like insane. If you are going to Chicago: go to Avec (and Jeni’s) fo sho.

Les got the breakfast pizza and Bonnie got the french toast.

Avec3

I got the butcher’s steak with leeks, kale and a fried egg plus a side of papas bravas (fried potatoes).

Avec1.

Avec2

We walked on Southport Ave in the afternoon (really cute street!) and also met up with our cousins. Oh and remember that budget? Yeah, that didn’t happen as I did some damage at Athleta and found some really cute pieces at Francesca’s. Oops.

Amy Les Chicago   Amy Bonnie Chicago

Amy Les Wrigley

We were pretty exhausted and didn’t feel like doing much on our last night but hanging out. I somehow convinced Bonnie and Les that dinner at Whole Foods was a genius idea. Obvs it is so that’s what we did.

Whole Foods Dinner

Yum. Bonnie and Les also had round two at Jeni’s but I stuck to fruit from WF. 

Then it was off to the airport the next morning and back home.

Airport Breakfast

I didn’t workout and didn’t eat a ton of vegetables or grass-fed meat. I stayed up late and enjoyed every moment. I ate gluten, dairy and sugar. I’m alive, well and had a blast with two of my favorite people! And now I’m ready for some veggies, bowls of food and sweaty workouts.

 

Questions of the day…

Have you ever been to Chicago? What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?! 

 

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I’m heading back to Toronto today after a fabulous weekend in Chicago – I’ll tell you all about it on Wednesday. But until then, how does a giveaway (and a quick chat about supplements) sound? Good? Yes I thought so too.

So I used to take a multi-vitamin everyday with breakfast. I didn’t really know much about vitamins or minerals back in the day, I just took it because I was too old for Flinstone chewables and thought I needed a little extra yabba-dabba-doo. Okay I’m totally kidding – I just thought popping a pill packed with good-for-you vitamins and minerals was a good thing to do, ya know? And it is. But last year I looked at the ingredients list of my multi: hydrogenated oils, artificial colors… say what?! In my multi-VITAMIN. Little did I know that many commercial vitamins contain all this added junk: colorants for a more appealing look, coatings for easier swallowing. No thank you. So I ditched my multi and yup, you guessed it: got to learning.

herbs

I did some research online (which taught me a bit) but have since learned a tonnnnnn about vitamins, minerals and other supplements since beginning my program. I’ve already read hundreds of pages, studies, articles on the subject and to be honest it is the most challenging area for me: remembering the names, knowing the difference in functions and knowing how we put them into practice in our everyday lives. It’s confusing and a lot of information – but I love it nonetheless. Among many things, I have learned that legit vitamins (without any junk) do exist and I’m excited to partner up with Swanson Health Products today for a chance to get your hands on some legit goodies.

I think you know that I don’t undertake any changes (be it food, fitness or otherwise) without doing my research. I questioned the paleo diet; I questioned CrossFit; I questioned long distance running; the list can go on. So I took the same approach with incorporating vitamins, minerals and supplements into my life but have since incorporated all three.

Of course I aim to get everything I need from real food but with the processing of our food and our modern ways, nutrients are lost and I need a little extra help in order to feel and perform my best. More often than not, I believe the right kind of supplementation is a really beneficial thing.

Supplements

Vitamins: I currently take a B complex (this one) at breakfast and dinner. B vitamins play an important role in our cell metabolism and many bodily functions. B vitamins are most abundant in animal products.

Minerals: I also take 30 mg of zinc (this one) in the morning and 270 mg of magnesium (this one) every evening before bed. Zinc is a trace mineral with many functions (athletic performance, skin, energy). Magnesium is a soothing mineral (helpful before bed) and also helps treat inflammation. I also use magnesium oil on my knees (darn running) and take baths in epsom salt (which is also a magnesium derivative) to keep inflammation down.

Supplements: I use protein powder in my post-workout smoothie almost daily - it has certainly helped with my muscle recovery and it is delicious. I also recently started taking 2 to 3 grams of BCAAs (branch chain amino acids) pre and post workout. I believe the BCAAs (I take these) are further aiding in my muscle recovery, growth and repair. They are also a lot more practical (and budget friendly) than devouring a steak.

BCAAs

So that’s what I have been taking/doing at this point in time (it might change) and what I am doing might not work for you. Please consult with a practitioner before making changes in order to determine what works for you and your body. But when it comes time for you to buy some vitamins, minerals, supplements, natural body care products, essential oils, herbs… Swanson has got you covered!

To celebrate Swanson Health Products‘ 45th anniversary, they are offering one Little Honey Bee reader a $45 gift certificate to shop til ya drop – well, until you spend $45. Swanson features thousands of health products and the giveaway is open worldwide until Thursday evening. Please enter using the Rafflecopter below.

Good luck and I’ll announce the winner on Friday!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Be sure to keep in touch with Swanson on FacebookTwitterPinterest and Instagram for lots of sweet deals, recipe ideas and updates.

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Keep in touch:

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