MONDAY MOTIVATION: 5 WAYS TO SHAKE UP YOUR DIET

Happy Monday! I woke up at 5, had a client at 6, and then walked home at 7. Ben was getting ready to head to the gym, so I quickly changed my shirt and walked to Starbucks with him, where his iced coffee was waiting for him, and he introduced me to his Starbucks 'Guy,' Matthew. WTF? Here I thought I was the Starbucks Star in our house... Apparently not...

So, I've been home from Greece exactly a week today, and I'm just now STARTING to feel I'm getting back into the swing of things, with one major exception. I'm dealing with a setback right now. I haven't talked about this on the blog, but I have mild scoliosis and live mostly pain-free, but every few years it seems to rear its ugly head. In college, I had bad back pain and went to the clinic, where the doctor there gave me some mysterious medicine shrink wrapped in plastic, like candy. To this day I have no idea what the hell it was, but I took it and the pain disappeared. In 2012, when I was doing a lot of SoulCycle, the pain came back and I went to a chiropractor for 6 weeks, and the pain went away again. In 2014, right after my mom died, I had so much neck and shoulder pain from the grief; there were days I literally couldn't pick my head up. I went to physical therapy for 6 weeks, and voila, better.

So there's definitely a pattern when it comes to my back, and I'm always careful. But shit happens, and now I have a bulging disc in my lumbar spine. UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. I just finished my pack of high dosage anti-inflammatory steroids and I'm in physical therapy. This could be so much worse and I'm grateful that the issue is solvable without surgery. But it definitely put a damper on our vacation and it's putting a serious cramp in my style. I haven't been exercising because I'd rather wait until I get clearance from my doctor. It's not worth it to me. But I'm going a little crazy right now. 

Getting to or being at your idea weight comes from two factors: diet and exercise. So if you're not seeing the scale budge but feel like you're giving it your all in the gym, here are 5 ways to shake up your diet.

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1. Eliminate something. At the beginning of this year, I cut out grains for two weeks and it pretty much changed my life. I have since learned that my body much prefers to live without gluten. I'm not celiac but there's no denying how much my joints ache after having bread or most any other kind of grain. I feel awful! Currently I'm trying to live without dairy as well which is much more challenging for me. If you're thinking of going Paleo, trying Whole30, or something else along those lines, consider eliminating one thing (grains, dairy, or gluten perhaps) for two weeks and seeing how you feel.

2. Redefine your 'healthy' choices. Health is subjective, and the foods you choose should reflect what you want in your life, whether that's to sleep better, lose weight or gain mass. The more I talk to clients, the more I realize that we could all stand to scrutinize what we're eating (how on earth did Kind bars and avocado toast get the reps of "superfoods"...) and rethink some of our choices. Personally, I'm no longer buying gluten-free cereals because I realized it was a mindless food for me and wasn't really giving me anything other than something to munch on when I was bored. What foods in your refrigerator or pantry could you stand to replace?

3. Change your meal scheme. Right now I'm trying to focus on eating three square meals, because I feel like when I eat mini meals, I end up eating more than I need because I'm eating every few hours.

4. Cut out alcohol. This is everyone's least favorite, but I highly recommend trying this. Give yourself a set amount of time. If you're not quite ready to delve into Whole30, make your own 'Semi30' and cut out alcohol and one other thing for a month. Chances are you'll see a difference in how you look, feel and perform in 30 days!

5. Follow me on Snapchat. Here's the shameless plug you've been waiting for! I post most of my meals on Snapchat (username = teddisetgo). I see that some of you have been screen-shotting my meals which excites me. That's awesome. I eat a lot of different things (mostly Paleo/Paleo-ish) that I hope will inspire you in your own kitchen. Screen shot away! But if you screen shot a selfie of me, like someone did on Saturday, I will block you. Because that's just odd.

P.S. The first photo is the view we had from breakfast each day at our resort in Santorini and the second photo is takeout from Pitogyros (and the best tzatziki I've ever had!). I miss pita, but I do not miss how sluggish I felt after eating it... 

Gluten. You bastard.

FRIDAY FIVE {8/19/2016}

I'm baaa-aaack! I have SO much to tell you guys but for now I'll just chat about my five favorite beauty related items this week (all products I brought to Greece) and next week I'll try to get my head on straight and get back to our (somewhat) regularly scheduled programming.

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1. Redken Beach Envy Wave Aid This saved me in Greece! I didn't bring any electric styling tools with me for fear that it'd be a waste of space (Perri once ruined an expensive flat iron abroad, and none of my tools worked in Israel). It also just felt like a way for me to sort of unwind and not worry about what my hair looked like. This (paired with the travel sized shampoo and conditioner) gave my hair a little bit of life in a VERY humid climate.

2. Burt's Bees Sensitive Facial Cleansing Towelettes I've talked about these before but have to reiterate my love. I use these to remove face makeup and to scrub off the remainders of an old spray tan. It works MUCH better than an exfoliator. 

3. Tarte Clay Pot Waterproof Liner & Double Ended Liner Brush I don't wear mascara or any makeup on my top lid because of my eyelash extensions, but putting a thin line of this on my lower lash line makes a WORLD of difference and stays in put during long days on the gym floor.

4. SCUNCI Headbands These are my latest secret hair weapon, and I can't believe it took me almost 32 years to figure out this hack. *hangs head in shame* If I don't have time to heat style my hair, the first thing I do after combing through my wet hair is slip on one of these headbands. The product I use varies (sometimes it's the Wave Aid, other times I layer Bumble & bumble Defrizz, Don't Blow It and Surf Infusion) but keeping on the headband until my hair dries ensures the top and front of my hair is smooth and frizz free. UGH why did it take so long for me to figure that out?!

5. Sephora Eyebrow Editor Complete Brow Kit I love this brow kit because it houses everything you need in one neat little compact - perfect for throwing into your gym bag or daily tote!

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Linking up with Heather. Thanks for hosting!

Happy Friday! Thank you for reading! Have a wonderful weekend and I'll see ya next week.

P.S. The winner of my Super Saturday giveaway has been drawn and contacted. Congrats, Caitlin!

FRIDAY FIVE {8/5/2016}

Wow! What a difference a week makes! This was a great one and I'm excited to see what August and the end of summer brings. Almost 10 months to the day after our wedding, Ben and I are taking a much-anticipated honeymoon, so be sure to follow along on Instagram and Snapchat (username is teddisetgo). 

Here are my favs this week...

1. Nike 'Pro - Classic' Sports Bra Even though I'm a full-fledged member of the IBTC, I LOVE how supported this bra makes me feel. I usually don't use the pads that these came with, but I do like having the option. (Psst...I pair this bra with this top that is also included in the Nordstrom sale right now!)

2. Michael Stars Cami Open Back Dress I scored this at Super Saturday (in purple) and found it at an awesome sale price for you, too!

3. Gorjana 'Mika' Crystal Ear Jackets Have you entered my giveaway yet? The gift bag may or may not include a gorgeous pair of earrings that look like these...

4. Pintrill I'm kind of obsessing over these little enamel pins I keep seeing everywhere. My dad and Perri picked up a few at Urban Outfitters last weekend, and then I received one in my POPSUGAR Must Have Box. I put it on my denim jacket...too cute.

5. Leith Ruffle Tank I bought this over the weekend. Blush pink + ruffles = can't go wrong.

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Linking up with Heather. Thanks for hosting!

Thank you for reading. Have a wonderful weekend!

SUMMER STYLE: SUPER SATURDAY {GIVEAWAY!!!}

Super Saturday is hands down one of my favorite weekends of the year. This year was the first year that I stopped and noticed all the little kids there and thought about bringing my own baby with me some year. It's an incredible charity event that's become a tradition in our family and a part of our lives. (Read about my experience there last year.)

It was extra fun for me this year to decide what to wear, as I spend 95% of my time in either black spandex or pajamas. (Honestly I prefer to sleep sans PJs in the summer like the true Floridian I am, but Ben keeps it so cold in our apartment that I'm forced to wear the whole enchilada, including socks. Yes, SOCKS!) I settled on a fun top and shorts set, comfortable wedges and a cross body bag for easy movement.

{On me: Top, Shorts, Earrings, Bag, Shoes. On Perri: Romper, Bag.}

I think the food may have been my favorite part of the day. Sant Ambroeus caters and it's just fantastic. If the buffet line hadn't been so long, I definitely would've gone back for seconds (and thirds). Instead, I hightailed it to the dessert table after this plate below was finished and had a grand ole time.

My dad was kind enough to donate his VIP gift bag (thanks, Dad!) to TSG, which means, yes, one of you lucky ladies (or lads) will be winning the amazing swag bag Perri is holding in the picture below!

The gift bag has tons of fun stuff in it including products from Carolee, Donna KaranDr. HauschkaGorjana, John Masters Organics, Sol de Janeiro and more.

So what are you waiting for? Enter below!

US residents only, please. This bag is HEAVY and will be costly to ship. Thanks for understanding!

FRIDAY FIVE {7/29/2016}

It's been a weird few weeks between what would've been my mom's 59th birthday, battling awful summer allergies, and generally trying to live a balanced life. Summer is weird because they gym quiets down a bit, as much of our clientele travels for the season. I haven't been quite as busy with work so I've really been making the most of my extra free time, working out more, taking long walks, getting things done around the apartment and brainstorming ways to set my business on fire come fall. This weekend is an exciting one, and I've got a great giveaway coming your way soon. I bet some of you can guess what it is... But for now, here are a few of my favorite things this week!

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Lululemon 'Beat The Heat' Bra + 'Fly Away Tamer' Headband  The top is perfect for a hot and sweaty summer workout, not to mention motivating to get those abs chiseled. And I love a good match set!

Show Me Your Mumu 'Casita' Mini Dress I had my eyes on this for months and finally bit the bullet. I see what all the hype is about: the cut is spot on, the fit is flattering and the print is the perfect balance of color and floral. Nailed it. (I originally wanted it in this print but ended up with the print in the photo above.)

Free People 'Turnout' Tie Up Leggings These remind me of a pair of Fabletics leggings I own, but I like how the bow is a bit more substantial on these. (Love these too.)

Onecklace Sterling Silver Roman Numeral Engraved Bar Necklace I've been wanting a "date" necklace for quite some time, so when Onecklace reached out to me and generously offered to send me a piece of their jewelry, I knew exactly what to choose. I've always thought of Roman Numerals as regal, and I love that the meaning behind the numbers (our wedding date) is not immediately obvious. I'm impressed with the quality and the price point is awesome.

Burt's Bees 'Pink Blossom' Tinted Lip Balm When it comes to makeup, and when I'm on the gym floor, I always want to look like I tried, but not too hard. This lip balm is the best shade of pink (not too "baby" and not too garish). The price is so good that I've bought several and tucked them into different bags. 

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Linking up with Heather. Thanks for hosting!

Thank you for stopping by. Have a wonderful weekend!

FRIDAY FIVE - #NSALE {7/15/2016}

Growing up in Miami in the 1980s/90s, I knew a thing or two about shopping. I knew Chanel was the fancy brand that Grandma liked. (The day I broke my pretzels into two C shapes during snack time, interlocked them, and said, "Look! I made Chanel!" was a classic story at Beth Am for years. I was 3.) I knew that Mommy had a big job in fashion. (She was the fashion director for Burdines. Anyone remember Burdines?!) When my parents announced we were moving to Dallas in 1998, I cried for days, weeks, months. My mom tried desperately to cheer me up by pointing out the pros of our new city. 

"They have Nordstrom!" she said with conviction.

"What's Nordstrom?" I said.

"Nordstrom is fabulous," she said. 

She was right.

Nordstrom ended up being a go-to for me in the years to come: it's where I bought my first school dance dress; it's where I got my makeup done for countless formals. I love Nordstrom to this day and every time I shop there, I think of her. And I think it's insane that they have this reverse sale each year where they mark down NEW stuff, when everyone else still does it the other way around. Just crazy. Here are my picks...

1. Stuart Weitzman 'Perfection' Bootie My mom did not do heels (Chanel flats only) but she would've loved these for me. The rich color, the little bow... these really are perfect!

2. 7 For All Mankind 'Slim Illusion Luxe' Skinny Jeans I've been wearing 7 since high school and there are few things I love more in my closet than a great pair of dark skinny jeans. Plus, 50% off?! Can't beat it.

3. Burberry 'Leightonbury' Jacket Love the cross between fashion (slim fit, classic nova check lining) and function (hood!!!) here.

4. Gorjana 'Power Stone' Bracelet I think what I love most about this, other than the symbolism behind it (black onyx is said to offer protection and stress relief) is the fact that it comes with two. And I definitely know who I'd give the second one to ;)

5. Nike 'Juvenate' Sneakers Floral print Nikes? No explanation necessary. 

The sale is open now to those of you lucky ducks with Nordstrom credit cards...the rest of us chickens will have to wait until next Friday. Or open a Nordstrom credit card today. Whatevs. Just a thought. A really good one...

Happy Friday!

Linking up with Heather. Thanks for hosting!

WHAT I ATE & 5 WAYS TO STAY ON TRACK ON THE GO

Yesterday I woke up on the right side of the bed. Monday was really frustrating for so many reasons, but yesterday I got up and was determined to have a good, full, productive day. I got a decent night's sleep and felt ready to take on the world. 

My alarm went off at 5:45am for my first session at 6:30am. I got dressed, pulled my breakfast together for the road and stopped at CVS for a few bottles of water before heading to the gym.

I had a 30 minute break between my first and second sessions, so I ate breakfast: a cup of plain Chobani with organic blackberries, half a GFB bar chopped up and about half a serving of PaleoKrunch. And by the way, this GoStak snack container is one of the best things I've purchased this year. No lie. (It comes with four compartments.)

After my last morning session, I got an email from my manager that Gregory's Coffee was offering any size cold brew for $1, one day only. In the words of Cher Horwitz, well, you can guess what happened next. I caught up on email with a large CB and ate half a thinkThin bar before heading back to the gym for my workout.

I stopped at Lululemon first and used a gift card to buy the Festival 2 cross body bag. I got the original version of the bag last year and wore it almost daily, but it doesn't fit my iPad. The new one is almost identical but just slightly larger and fits my iPad perfectly. (Side note: does anyone want the "old" one?! It's SUCH a great bag and in good condition! Seems silly for me to keep both.)

After my workout, I headed home to eat lunch: a chopped salad of baby spinach, deli turkey, garbanzo beans, roasted broccoli, dried cranberries and sunflower seeds. 

Aaaaaand a big serving of Blue Diamond nut thin crackers with a little almond butter and a lot of strawberry jam! Yum.

I spent the afternoon working at the computer and made a smoothie of Slap chocolate protein, frozen banana, almond milk and PB2 around 3:30pm. I drank about half before heading back to the gym (and saved the other half for later).

My plan was to make eggs for dinner since Ben would be out at a work event, but when I asked my last client of the day what she was having for dinner and she said, "Sushi," I decided that's what I wanted too! I was really hungry so I ordered two rolls and a chicken satay appetizer. I ate all of the sushi and half of the chicken.

Craving something sweet, I ate a small bunch of grapes before getting ready for bed. Wednesdays and Fridays are my earliest days (I wake up around 5) which means I try to get to bed earliest on Tuesday and Thursday nights.

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5 ways to stay on track with your nutrition goals when your schedule is crazy:

1. Fill a GoStak with fresh or dried berries, nuts, Paleokrunch, etc the night before a long day. All of these foods can be enjoyed on their own or work well as toppings on oatmeal or yogurt.

2. Speaking of oatmeal, keep a few cups (I like Glutenfreeda or thinkThin) or packets (make sure you also have access to a bowl and spoon) in your desk or locker at work. If your office has a heated water dispenser, you've got breakfast!

3. Take your smoothie to go either by blending it directly into a cup (I use my Vitamix To Go cup) or pouring it into a cup that's either easy to carry around or disposable (so you can chuck it when you're done if you don't feel like lugging it all over town).

4. Keep a protein bar in your bag/desk drawer/car at all times. Never give yourself a reason to hit the vending machine. My favorite brands are thinkThin (chunky peanut butter) and OhYeah! ONE (birthday cake). I love GFB but they're a bit higher in sugar so I usually eat half at a time in plain yogurt. (They make these great bites too when you just want a little bit of something rather than  a whole bar.)

5. If you're a coffee person who never has the time or energy for breakfast, grab a Blender Bottle and some coffee protein powder (either individual packets, or use the storage compartment). Best of both worlds!

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Happy Wellness Wednesday! Thanks for reading. Now go be your brilliant self.