Sunday, December 21, 2014

Pennsylvania So Far...

Man, it's good to be home. I definitely don't take this time for granted since we live 14 hours away.

On the drive home we listened to the podcast Serial. What an AWESOME way to pass time!!! We were definitely obsessed with following along and listening to episode after episode. So we binged on all 8.5 hours of the podcast. If you've listened to it I really want to know who you think did it or what happened. Joe and I've had a few conversations, but pretty much can't come to a decision. A few of my friends want him acquitted, but I just don't know!!

Once we got 10 hours into the drive we stayed the night at Joe's mom's house. We got in at 3am and I've never slept so soundly! It was too bad we had to get up by 8am to finish out the drive. But after another 4 hours we were in Hershey :)

Both my puppy and my aunt's dog were here, so I was in dog heaven.

Then, on Saturday I went wedding dress shopping!! Yes, I found one! No, I'm not going to show you any pictures haha. What an experience that was. I guess it was my first "in-person" wedding planning event. I can definitely tell you that I'm not good at being the center of attention. When everyone was looking at me…even though they're my best friends and family, I was nervous and turning red! Lol. I really have to build up my abilities by next October.

The dress store was called Cocoa Couture in Hershey, PA. They had beautiful dresses. My cousin who just got married came with and helped me talk through the gowns. Every time I came out in a dress she asked "what do you like, what don't you like." That line of questioning made me realize that I HATED one aspect of all the dresses that I thought I loved. I ended up getting something that I didn't totally expect, but I'm obsessed! Now my #sweatingforthewedding motivation is even more than before!! Haha.

So for now I'm relieved that I found a dress I love. Next up is a food tasting at our venue tomorrow! And working out. Lots of working out.


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

INDULGENT Holiday Recipe

AKA…not a healthy recipe haha. Because during the holidays you have to enjoy yourself…and to me there's no better way than Pudding Shots!

I found this recipe when I was in college at a tailgate. Then I made them for my friends that I went on Spring Break with and they were a total hit! I could sit here and try to make them into a "healthier" version…but lets get serious. It's an alcoholic pudding shot. There's no way to make it "clean." And life doesn't always have to be perfect and healthy because that would be extremely boring. So I hope you enjoy this recipe and share it with friends!

Jess's Pudding Shots

  • 1/2 cup Pinnacle Whipped
  • 1/2 cup Bailey's
  • 4oz packed Instant Chocolate Pudding Mix
  • 1/2 cup Milk
  • 1 cup Lite Whipped Cream
  • Mini Ice Cream Cones
  • Mix vodka, Bailey's, pudding mix, and milk together.
  • Slowly mix in whipped cream and stir until well combined.
  • Pour liquid batter into ziploc bags (I use 1/2 gallon bags)
  • Freeze for at least 4 hours!
  • Cut the corner of the bag and "pipe" into mini-ice cream cones and serve immediately.


My bearded fiance. 


Monday, December 15, 2014

FREE Weight Loss Tracker

Today I want to share something special with all of you!

As 2014 comes to an end, everyone begins to transition into this crazy resolution mode! While I'm all about resolutions, many people don't have the proper tools to help them map out their attack on the #1 New Year's Resolution: Weight Loss. So, fill out the Google Doc below and I'll send you my Free Weight Loss Tracker ASAP!

Enjoy and Merry Christmas!


Thursday, December 11, 2014


If you've ever met my mom then you know she's the sweetest human ever.

Not to be outdone, she bought me the COOLEST birthday present today! A microdermabrasion!

I was originally going to get it done at home in Hershey while I was back for Christmas. But I found out that my local beauty studio does it for $25 CHEAPER! Tis the season to save, so I went this afternoon.

A microdermabrasion exfoliates the top layer of the skin and reduces lines, wrinkles and PORE SIZE (that's what I was most excited about!) If you're local to Madison I can't recommend Modish Studios ENOUGH! Marie (the licensed esthetician and skin care line creator) is incredibly knowledgable and helpful. Hearing her describe how the skin works and how to keep it hydrated, healthy and young looking was fascinating to me. Better yet, she makes it all make sense. It's funny, I've always been so diligent with feeding my body correctly and getting my vitamins and minerals in…but when it came to my skin I never thought about it. And if I've learned anything from talking to Marie, it's that ignoring your skin is stupid! Your skin is so important and if you want to look younger for longer… then you have to take care of it.

Here's my BEFORE (no foundation) and AFTER (still no foundation)

So you can see, just a little redness. But my nose pores are a lot smaller! :) It felt like a cats tongue was licking my face. Oddest description, but totally on point! After the microderm, she gave me an enzyme treatment and then a mask. My skin feels so smooth right now!

This studio is also where I get all my spray tanning done. Since I've grown up, I've realized paying for a spray tan now is much healthier than paying for skin cancer later. Heather (the owner) and her staff all do a great job. I've never left feeling orange, streaky or awkward looking. They know what they're doing and use top of the line products (which helps, believe me). In college I tried getting a spray tan at California Tan. It was a booth. It was awful. I sweated off orange at the gym 3 days later and was so embarrassed! I promise you that this won't happen if you go to Modish!

Now I'm ready to head home for the holiday's with my super fresh and healthy skin :)

Have you ever had a facial, microdermabrasion or enzyme treatment done?


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

T25 vs. Insanity MAX:30

After my post yesterday, I got a lot of questions!! Mostly about the difference between Insanity Max: 30 and Focus T25. Although both programs were created by Shaun T, they’re very different!

First, Focus T25 is much more choreographed. It’s based on a count system so when Shaun T’s teaching you…he’s thinking rhythms and 8 counts. This can be hard for some people to get the hang of (I know it was for me!). It usually takes about a week to figure it all out and be able to do the workouts without stopping and thinking “what arm and leg go up at the same time??” Insanity Max: 30 on the other hand, is very drill based. It’s all about speed and agility. You do tuck jumps, burpees and planks. It’s a “go-go-go---you gotta get this done because your life depends on it” kind of feeling during the workout. A sense of urgency for sure!

Focus T25 is a 25 minute program, 5 days a week with a double day on Friday’s. So the Friday workout is really 50 minutes total. Insanity Max: 30 is a 30 minute program, 5 days a week. There is an optional recovery workout called Pulse that you can do on Saturday’s, but it’s not required. I like to move most days of the week so I’m definitely going to be doing it!

T25 uses weights in the second month of the program (and in the Gamma phase if you purchase those 5 workouts). I definitely LOVED the weighted workouts. I used free weights rather than the band they send you. Max: 30 is all YOU. No weights or bands. This is great for me at this time of the year since I travel home and don’t always have access to any equipment (although a band fits fine in a suitcase!)

Both have modifiers, but Beachbody did something really great in Max: 30 that I’ve never seen before…they have a play option on the home screen called “Show Modifier.” SOOOO, when you select this option you see a regular version of the program on the left and then you ALWAYS see the modifier on the right!! Kind of like picture in picture. This has been great the past 2 days since I frequently max out and have to do the modified move. I never find myself waiting around until they show it again because it’s always right there. Bravo, Beachbody.

Since I JUST started Max: 30 I can’t give an overall opinion because I still have workouts to do! But, here’s my advice. If you’ve NEVER done a DVD workout program…start with T25. It’s a great way to learn basic moves, get faster, stronger and more confident in your skills. If you workout regularly or have already done T25 and want a shock to the system, then go with Max: 30! It’s one of those workouts that I know I’ll keep coming back to (just like the regular Insanity). Both are short, sweet and effective!


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Insanity Max:30 Day 1

Day 1. Yep, I started Insanity Max:30!

The best part of this Insanity workout is that it's only 30 minutes!!

So it made it a lot easier to get out of bed this morning when I knew it wasn't a whole hour like the previous Insanity.

This first workout is considered the fit test. So we do it weekly and measure progress on the calendar.

Insanity Max is different from regular Insanity, because you measure your "max out" time. This is the minute mark in the workout where you can no longer keep up and have to take a break. Shaun T reminds you it's OKAY to max out..since that's the whole point of the workout. I maxed out at 4:10 today. And honestly, it was because of my calfs!! The warm up section is a lot of jumping movements and my calfs are way out of shape. Once you max out you jot it down on the tracking calendar…then JUMP BACK IN.

The moves in the workout are really dynamic…meaning lots of muscle groups all at once. My favorite was definitely Chair Squat Jumps. It's like a really mean twist on chair pose in yoga and burns your inner thighs!!

Like all Beachbody programs, Max:30 comes with a nutrition guide. The REALLY cool part of this nutrition guide is that it utilizes the container system! And the containers are the same ones used in the 21 Day Fix!! You certainly don't need them..but it's such an awesome way to link together the programs and keep you thinking about eating well. It shows you how to advance past the 21 days of the fix and into a lifetime of health!! Even if you don't have the 21 Day Fix, you can buy the containers separately here.

Overall, I'm impressed with the first workout, the nutrition guide, the eating out guide and the inspiration from Shaun T before and during the workout!! I'll be keeping you updated as I progress through :)

If you're interested in Insanity Max:30, fill out the form below!


Thursday, December 4, 2014

Crockpot Chicken Meatballs

This has felt like a really busy week! I got behind on a project at work and had to stay up until 1am on Monday night finishing it. I blame that 1 night for the constant feeling of busy I've had since! I'm a very regimented (okay, old lady) when it comes to my sleep. Sunday through Thursday I like to go to bed by 10pm and sleep until at least 5:45am. One messed up night and I'm all outta whack.  I have NO IDEA how mom's do it. I'm pretty sure some of them sleep like 4 hours a night and call that "good." So not ready to be a parent yet.

Anyway, tonight I'm sharing a really easy and really delicious recipe! This is perfect for any holiday potluck or New Years Eve celebration. Of course it's healthy too.

Sweet Chicken Meatballs

-2 pounds Ground Chicken
-2 egg whites
-1/2 cup 1-minute Oats
-1 bottle BBQ Sauce (try to choose a lower sugar kind. Like <8g Sugar per 2 Tbsp)
-1 Jar Grape Jelly (I used Welch's Reduced Sugar)

-Mix ground chicken, egg whites and oats in a large bowl. Use your hands to combine together very well.
-Heat large pan on stovetop to medium-high. Spray pan with baking spray.
-Roll chicken mixture into small meatballs. (People will want to eat these in one bite, so the smaller the better!)
-After rolling meatballs, place them in the heated pan. Brown the outside.
-Meanwhile, combine BBQ Sauce and Jelly in a crockpot on high.
-After meatballs are browned, add them to the crockpot. Cook for an additional 20 minutes (or until fully cooked) in the crockpot.
-Hold hot until you serve them!


Monday, December 1, 2014

Bikini Competitor?

As a fitness lover and Instagram obsessed girl (come on, I know I'm not the only one!!) I've seen TONS of my fellow fit friends start training for bikini competitions. For a long time I had ZERO interest and couldn't fathom how people had that much dedication to eat so much protein while cutting back SO LOW on their carbohydrates. The inner dietitian came out and I thought that they're wrecking their digestive system for this silly competition.

But then I started Flexible Dieting (IIFYM) and thought that if I could eat like THIS for a competition, why not? Still, it was just a thought and I didn't really focus in on it longer than 10 seconds.

THEN, my fit friend Arielle posted her before and after and entered her first competition. (You can find her on Instagram @relletonesup).

I mean, come on! How freaking awesome is this? Yes, its a butt shot and can be awkward. But I choose to look at her back muscles and how much she has toned up! I started thinking that if SHE'S overcome confidence issues and is able to give it her all, so can I!

So right now, I'm SERIOUSLY THINKING about it. I won't say I'm doing it. But a possible show is in June of 2015 and I have Arielle doing that one and another friend of mine that is a newbie :)

The only problem with all of this is that competing is really expensive. There's tons of stuff to buy, you have to learn how to pose LOL and you need a coach for that. I really don't want to pay money for any of it! But maybe once I start seeing my hard work turn into lean muscle and results, my mind will change. As always, Joe is really supportive and will help me with anything I want to do. I love that guy :)

So for now, I'm going to do Insanity Max:30 to kick off the leaning out portion (Join Me Doing Insanity Max:30 HERE!). Then I'm going to start Les Mils Pump (if my momma and daddy listened to my request for a present haha) to build more muscle. After those 2 programs, I'm going to reevaluate my plan the weekend of February 7th! 

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