Category Archives: inspiration

Simple Suppers

I am not sure about you, but I love simplicity in my day to day life!  Sure I spend more time on the weekends with clothing, makeup, meals, etc. – BUT – during the week I like to keep things in life as simple as possible.

When I am finished with a busy work day followed by gym time, spending hours in the kitchen to prepare food is not what I want to do.  I am usually starving by the time I finish a workout.  Which means that I want my food to ready in a snap!  Sure it is so easy to run through a drive through, pick up an order, or even grab something quick and easy in the grocery…..but let’s be real – how healthy is that?  I have several go to options that I like to keep things simple while also being healthy and tasty.

One thing I really rely on weekly are what we call bowl meals.  Most everyone has heard of this, but I am talking beyond salads/soups/chili.  I am talking about literally just throwing what is available into a bowl.  I always make sure that each bowl contains all three required nutrients – protein, carbs, and healthy fats.  It is not unusual to place meat of choice, grain of choice, and roasted veggies into a bowl then top with seasonings, oil/avocado, or a sauce.  I stir it all together and dig in!

So a few of my weekly staples that I like to have on hand include:

Ground Beef – saute with salt, pepper, onion, and garlic.  Grilled/Roasted Chicken – drizzle with an oil and add seasoning.  Grilled roasted fish/shrimp – again just drizzle with oil and seasoning.  Cook a batch of each on Sunday’s to place in the fridge – from here you can reheat with any seasoning/sauces you would like.  So what are the options for this?

  • tacos/burritos
  • salads
  • pasta/sauce
  • stir fry
  • mixed with roasted veggies
  • on top of toast

Some other items I like to have on hand in the fridge weekly include roasted veggies, rice/quinoa cooked in broth, boiled eggs, raw veggies, greens for salads, tuna, olives, deli meats, and variety of cheeses.

Because let’s be honest – sometimes a cheese board is dinner!




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Filed under DINNER, favorites, healthy eating, inspiration, Uncategorized

Enjoying Everyday Living

Are you “stuck” in a mundane daily life?  I will be honest with you guys……I have been!  I am working very hard to turn that around.

Just think about your daily life.  Your daily life is the ways in which you act, think, and feel on a daily basis.  Now think about the meaning of mundane – lacking interest or excitement; dull.  My daily life has been pretty dull.  Sure there have been days when I have had excitement.  Great things have happened, but let’s be honest those days are few and far between.  Day to day my life consists of the same routines.  The same outcomes.  Just the same…..but I am tired of feeling that my day is mundane.  I want to enjoy my life!

As you know I have been on a journey (yes a journey because this takes time and effort) to better myself not only physically; but emotionally and spiritually as well.  All is in an effort to simplify my life and enjoy everyday living.  So today I would like to share with you some of the things I have been doing daily to make my everyday not so mundane.  To be able to say that I enjoy everyday living!


I started by making a list of the things that I enjoy the most.  In order to enjoy your daily life it needs to be filled with the things that you love to do/have.  Here is my list:

  • Morning self-care routine
  • Waking an hour earlier to complete my morning routine
  • Enjoying a favorite coffee
  • Daily devotional
  • Daily bible reading/prayer
  • Stocking some of my favorite teas to drink throughout the day
  • Following a well-rounded, healthy, clean eating plan
  • Surrounding my space with things that make me happy – pictures, scriptures, quotes, etc.
  • Exercising/gym time
  • Evening self-care routine
  • Limiting social media
  • Evening reading
  • Journaling
  • Evening cup of Natural Calm before bed

Are all of these things basic, everyday habits?  Yes of course they are!  I have found that if I make sure to get all of the things that I enjoy into my day, it is no longer mundane.  While it is a routine (I am a creature of habit) they are all things that make me happy.

Before this I would just wake up, wash my face, make some coffee, go to get dressed, and head to work.  Then I would go through my day eating whatever I had time for, go home to start dinner, and immediately jump in to cleaning house/laundry.  Finally cleaning up after the day to jump into bed and do it all again.


I will be honest and say that this has taken time to put into action.  I started by sitting down and making a list of things that I would enjoy daily, or things that I would like to start incorporating into my day.  I also read several books on various topics to gain insight/ideas.  After making my list, I simply put things into action.   Here are some things that I did in order to ensure that I would follow my list:

  • I invested in some great natural beauty products
  • I buy my favorite coffee blends or flavored creamers just for me.
  • I buy my favorite teas (like matcha) so I can enjoy them daily.
  • I pre-plan my weekly meals to ensure healthy eating.
  • I purchased a new bible so that I could highlight/write in it instead of using an app
  • I try to get into the gym daily, even if it is only for 20-30 minutes
  • I have vision boards now in both my closet, on my fridge, and one hanging above my desk at work
  • I allow myself to check social media 4 times daily – morning, lunch, while having my afternoon snack, and once again while enjoying my evening bath.
    • Disclaimer: Sometimes I do check this more frequently if my day is not as busy, but I try to stick with this routine so I am not sucked into a world of negativity – because let’s be honest, social media is so full of negativity.
  • I have unfollowed many people/sights that are not fulfilling to my life on social media
  • I have made a habit of reading before bed – mainly concentrating on self-help books lately
  • Taking time to journal and reflect on my day – along with this I also have an ongoing list in my iPhone of something good that happened that day. Every night before bed I add something good from the day to the list.  At the end of the year I will be able to reflect on all of the blessings I had!

Most of these things are just second nature to me now.  If you are just starting this, and you decide to use my method of listing (I am obsessed with lists), you may find yourself having to actually check things off until they are habit.  I did have to make it into a to-do list when I started.  After some time, this list will become the norm. You will complete the list without even thinking about it, but it will make your day more enjoyable since you are doing/incorporating things that you enjoy!


Sounds simple right?  It does sound simple, but be prepared to have to consciously focus on this for a little while.  It is so easy to slip back into the same old routine of aimlessly going through your day.  You know the saying…..sometimes the simplest things are the hardest!

So leave me a comment below on things that you currently like or would like to incorporate into your daily life to make if more enjoyable.  I am always looking for inspiration from others, and I love to communicate with my readers!

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Waste Nothing

In an attempt to better myself I have been working hard to clean up my diet.  If you are a long time reader, you know that I was a big clean eating advocate.  After all that is what the start of the blog was based on.  However, life happened!  Job changes, schedule changes, babies turning into teenagers…..all the things that make slipping into old, yucky habits resurface!

So I went back in my archives, re-read some books that I had from the start of my journey long ago, and made my plan to become a healthier version of me.  Let’s be honest it all has to start with a plan.  As the saying goes – “If you fail to plan, plan to fail”.  Part of the planning process is writing out a menu, deciding what snacks will be needed for the week, and making your grocery list.  Without that list anything and everything will end up in the cart!

Now to make life easier I try to stick with the same breakfast for several days.  This is so I can pre-cook it to save time in the mornings.  I also have to eat pretty early in order to make my 3 hour between meals work with my scheduled lunch break at school.  Having breakfast in the refrigerator is key to my 5:15 meal time!


One of my favorite go to breakfasts is the breakfast bowl.  No not the one you get a Waffle House with eggs, hash browns, cheese, etc.  A much healthier version.  The varieties for this is endless.  Choose a meat, choose a veggie, and put that on a bed of greens!  I tend to stick with ground sausage, but you can use links as well.  Eggs are also a great addition if you eat them.  Veggie options are endless, but I will tell you know that sweet potatoes are my favorite, and of course you can add any toppings/sauces that you wish.


For this week’s bowls broccoli is on the menu.  I purchased a couple heads of broccoli to roast for dinner one night, and in keeping with my simplifying life attitude you waste nothing.  What do I mean?  Do not throw those broccoli stalks away!  Oh no, those stalks are good and nutritious!    So use them in other dishes like sautés, soups, and slaws!


You will need to cut the ends off.  They are kind of like asparagus, the very end of the stalk is tough and nasty.  Slice the stalk at the point of tenderness – in other words do not force the cut.  If your knife doesn’t cut through easily, then cut that baby a little higher.  Once you get the ends off take a vegetable peeler and give them a once over…..then chop, steam, or process.  Also makes a great broccoli rice J

  • Broccoli stalks (2)
  • Turkey sausage (ground)
  • Spinach & Arugula mix
  • Ghee
  • Salt
  • Pepper


Once my stems were chopped I placed them in a pan with some ghee, salt, and pepper.  Gave them a little sauté, added my pre-cooked ground turkey sausage, then divided the mixture into separate bowl on top of a spinach and arugula mix (my fav).  When I wake up in the morning I pop the bowl in the microwave, which steams the greens, and breakfast is ready in 1.5 minutes.  You can’t get any easier than that!

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Filed under Breakfast, favorites, healthy eating, inspiration, meal plans, Uncategorized


  • Serious thought or consideration

You may be wondering why I am starting a blog post with a definition, especially one that is so commonly known to all???


Everyone typically spends time before/after the New Year reflecting on their life, goals, decisions, etc.  After all it is a new year and a great time to make a change.  My change goes a little deeper than evaluating one’s goals.  My change has to deal with evaluating my heart, my emotions, and my outlook on life.

I am so very sorry to my loyal readers for not posting in the past few months –I have to admit to you guys that my heart just was not in it!

As you know I had to endure the loss of my father last October.  This came after a grueling six months of watching him deteriorate from liver cancer.  Needless to say it was a very stressful and emotional year!

Losing a loved one is the most stressful event to have to go through, and it throws you into an emotional crisis.  I didn’t want to write any more.  I didn’t want to share.  If I am being honest I really didn’t want to do much of anything for a while.  I tried to ignore the pain.  Pretend that all was right in my life.  Carry on with my day to day activities as if nothing in the world had changed.  That was exhausting.  Just getting out of bed to go to work, try to have a “normal” day, and carry on my family responsibilities was a task.  To even think about sharing something on a blog was almost impossible.  I would sit at the computer with all intentions of typing out a post only to stare at the blank screen.  Absolutely nothing came to mind, and when things did come to mind I just didn’t want to “talk” about them.


Ignoring the pain was getting me nowhere.  You have to acknowledge the pain in order to heal.  As I sat in a restaurant on a date night with my husband shortly after Christmas I realized I couldn’t ignore it anymore.  Half way through our meal something was mentioned that made me think about the state my life was in, it took everything inside of me to make it through the remainder of that meal before the water works were turned on.  I cried……..for two days!


That is when I realized that ignoring my feelings was only prolonging the grieving process.  I had to accept it and face it in order to get myself back on track.  I had to REFLECT on what had happened, and the affect the loss had on me.  Which is what I did.

I have taken the past couple of weeks to really work on getting back to a better version of me.  I have read a couple of books, started opening myself to God again, and really doing my best to move forward.  I have made several changes with my daily routines that have helped me to move forward.  For the most part I feel that I am finally at peace with the loss. I am ready to get back out into the world.  To share, to love, and to enjoy everything that this life has to offer.


The emotions will still creep up on occasion, like when a certain song is playing, but now I allow myself time to be sad.  I allow myself to cry and not fight the tears.  Then I say a small prayer thanking God for giving me grace, being by my side, and for calling my dad to Heaven with him.  Because if I am being honest – that is the absolute best place he could be!



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Fall has arrived,

But truth be told it will be gone soon.  For my long time readers you know in past posts I have often talked of how Louisiana basically has one season……HOT!

We will have a few weeks of actual fall like weather, it will turn hot again, and then we will have a very brief winter before it is…….you guessed it – hot again!

This very bipolar weather doesn’t really give this girl much of an opportunity to have a fall or winter wardrobe.  I basically concentrate more on lighter-outer layers as opposed to sweaters or thick outer wear.  Chances are I will be shedding those sleeves by noon, but my love for fashion makes me drool over the winter options my fellow bloggers and out of state friends/family get to wear.

So in honor of our two weeks of a breeze fall season I wanted to share a few of the pieces I have purchased recently, as well as some that I would LOVE to have if only it was practical for me!





I hope you like some of the pieces I have recently incorporated into my wardrobe, and that they could be an option for you in your fall season.  You can find all of the pieces (and many that are similar) at NORDSTROM!

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Filed under FASHION, favorites, inspiration, Uncategorized

A Life of Simplicity

I have been contemplating writing this post for so long now!  It is after all one of the things that made me want to get back into blogging in the first place.  With so much going through my thoughts, and going on with my life lately……I have just really been craving simplicity.


The realization that I am craving simplicity in my life didn’t happen overnight.  It has been and will continue being a process.  If you know me personally then you know that I live life at 100 mph. All. The. Time!  I have always been constantly doing something, going somewhere, making plans, etc.  I started 2017 off with the same mindset and habits.

Then I boarded a plane in July with my husband, and we spent a week on the island of Grand Cayman for our 10th anniversary.  Life is different on an island.  It is simple.  Peaceful.


No one cares about busyness.  As a matter of fact the only thing you are required to do on the island is liming.  Which simply just means the art of doing nothing! Everything moves at a much slower pace. People aren’t in a huge rush to get somewhere, they take time to savor and enjoy life.   All the stress and anxiety from life at home just melts away.

I lay on the beach day after day listening to the peaceful sound of slow waves rolling in, enjoying time spent with my husband, and time spent with people we met at our resort.  It all began to wear on me, I was exhausted with life.  I was tired of being tired.  I wanted change……something has to change!  I longed to have that same simplicity in my day to day life.


Over the past several weeks I have been really looking at my life.  Everything from habits I have (good and bad), material things I have, what I put in my body, what I put on my body, and how I spend my time.  I started thinking of things that needed to change.

Designing a simple life means having fewer distractions in your life, so you can focus on what matters.  As I work to simplify my life, I want to be intentional about choices that I make.  I want to remove what I do not need in all areas – home, food, products, schedules, thoughts, etc. – and add things that are meaningful to me, loved, and valued.

I decided that I would chronicle my baby steps to simplicity here.  After all this will be a process, and all processes usually start with “why”?  So step one……..

What is my why?  To have a stress-free, meaningful life.  To live intentionally, to have peace, and to have more gratitude.

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HN weekly menu & happenings

Let the countdown begin!!  I am starting my last two weeks of therapy today for the 2012/2013 school year, and counting down the last 19 days of work until the summer break 🙂  Whoop Whoop!!

I tell you things are getting exciting around here.  They are also  a pain in the behind.  Like literally!

You see last week I had a random rash break out on the very lower, left side of my back.  It popped up as a tiny little spot on Sunday, was worse by Monday, and I thought what the heck come Tuesday!  That lovely little rash was irritating the dickens out of me.

It didn’t itch.  Nope not at all.  Oh but did it burn like crazy, and the position……yeah right where the panties/pants hit.  So it was brushed against all day long.  I was thinking I picked up some random yuckiness from the tanning bed (yes I know that is bad for me), and decided not to finish my week out.  I was convinced that a little cortisone cream and time out of the heat would do the trick.  So I made my last workout on Wednesday for the week…..

I ended up at the walk in clinic Thursday afternoon.  Still convinced that it was a bad reaction to something I just needed relief from the burn.  Well that yucky little rash that I was convinced came from the tanning bed didn’t come from that at all.   Oh no, I have an atypical case of……..wait for it……….wait for it………the shingles!!


Yep, the shingles.  So here go the questions –

  1. Did you have chicken pox as a child?  Yes.
  2. Have you had a recent cold?  Yes. 
  3. Have you had any signs of fever blisters?  Yes.
  4. Have you been under any stress lately?  Uh why yes of course.  I work with special education in the school system, it’s the end of the school year, I am adjusting still to my hubster’s crazy new work schedule, and I am a single mom for half of the month…..


Now I am thinking….what in the world does all of this have to do with my dang shingles?  Well those bad boys as you know are a result of the chicken pox virus that stays in the body after you have had them.  For the rest of your life, but not just anywhere in your body.  It lives in your nerve cells.  Which is why the shingles are painful.  So basically between the stress and cold I have no immune system, put that back on top of more stress, and I break out in the friggin shingles!

Things are just peachy  burning around here!

So needless to say I am in no mood for exercise.  I am in no mood to be in the kitchen.  However, we all must eat so I have come up with an easy breezy menu for this week!

  • Monday – philly steak sloppy joes w/ tator tots
  • Tuesday – tilapia with pasta salad
  • Wednesday – stuffed backstrap with greens & roasted potatoes (hubby cooks)
  • Thursday – boiled shrimp & salad (hubby cooks again)
  • Friday – crockpot chicken cacciatore
  • Saturday – tuna sandwiches
  • Sunday – lasagna

It is the hubster’s long work week so I will have to cook over the weekend in order for him to have “lunch” to take with him to work.  We unfortunately have eaten out too much this past weekend, and on top of that I have been eating really crappy snacks lately so this has got to stop.  With things being so busy, adjusting to everything, I have been grabbing things to eat on the go which are not healthy options.  Let me tell you my body can tell and is showing the difference.  I have to start being more conscious of my snack and drink choices.  Those lovely little granola thins that my friend passed on to me because she didn’t like them must go! 

I am also determined to get some exercise in this week regardless of the crazy shingles epidemic.  Taking in extra calories while burning none is a complete disaster for this chic!  It is amazing how horrible you feel when eating whatever with no activity when you are so use to a healthy lifestyle.

  • Monday – two mile+ run (maybe more depends on how I feel)
  • Tuesday – lower body and cardio of choice
  • Wednesday – two mile+  run, upper body
  • Thursday – rest day/wine tasting 🙂
  • Friday – upper body, run
  • Saturday – rest day
  • Sunday –  lower body, cardio of choice

I really need to get back into my strength training.  I use to strength train a minimum of four days a week, I can’t tell you the last time I followed that schedule!  It is hard to fit it in lately with our crazy schedules.  I know that is no excuse…..I just need to purchase some weights and things for home.  You see on nights the hubster works I have to fit my workout into  a one hour window…..seriously!  I get home at 3:45, change, give boys a snack, and leave.  I am usually at the gym around 4ish, quick workout then race back home to make some sort of dinner so I can wake the hubster up at 5  to eat before he leaves for work at 6!  So literally I have very little time.  Since my kiddos aren’t old enough to really leave them at home I have to work with what I’ve got!

If any of you have any favorite products/workouts for at home I would love to hear from you 🙂

p.s. don’t forget to enter the giveaway, winner will be chosen on Thursday!!


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Monday Morning Blues

Where did my weekend go?  I mean really, blew in and out so quickly I promise I missed it!  I say I need a do over again… know since I really didn’t have one.

We had such a super busy weekend that I am so depressed that it is Monday already.  I spent the entire day Saturday cleaning in my house.  Or should I say cleaning in the two boys’ rooms.  While Sunday was spent at a birthday party and finishing said rooms.

We decided to convert the “play room” into a guest room since the boys only go in there for the Wii.  They are usually in their bedroom with the Xbox or toys.  Even though the toy box was in the play room, they would still pack them across to their bedroom.  So now the only thing left his the one game system.  Which I wanted to move to their room as well until Kohl convinced me to leave it in the guest room.  You know in case one wanted to play the Wii while the other plays Xbox.  Even though they rarely play separate games!

So what am I going to do with the guest room?  It is undecided yet.  We are basically using it for the hubster’s hunting/fishing gear… know storage.  We just threw a bed in to call it a guest room.  So I will do an update once I actually figure it all out.

 blog photos 113           

But my weekend did start great!  When I came home on Friday I had a lovely little box waiting for me from a wonderful blogger that has become not only an inspiration to me, but also a confidant and friend 🙂

blog photos 114

Farrah from over at Fairy Healthy Life had a give away on her blog that I won, which contained all of her favorites in it.  Just look at all of the goodies!  I was so super excited to open the box….and so super excited when I saw what was inside!!

blog photos 125

She of course included this adorable card inside with a personal message written in it.  I just love to get cards with personal messages, and yes I do say that the frogs are the two of us “stuck together” as friends, hehe!!

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In the box was some nutritious and very sustaining foods for me to enjoy 🙂  I have already made some of the tabouli, which is also today’s lunch, and will have the pasta later this week for dinner.  I loved the tabouli!  I is so super easy to throw together with other ingredient for a quick and very great meal.  Last night (as well as today) I have it mixed with some cannellini beans, lettuce, and a lovely Tuscan herb dressing to go with it.  Quick salad and so filling!

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Next up she added some spice in the mix!  I love things that have big,  bold flavors and spice.  I had some of the hot sauce with my salad mix last night, and plan to start using it in many meals to come.  As for the chipotle cubes……so excited to try this!  I haven’t seen these in our grocery stores so I was very intrigued by them.  I am thinking maybe a good chili???  I don’t know what do you guys think?

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A few snacks to keep me sane 🙂  I loved the sesame seed nuggets.  They were perfect to throw into my purse for a quick and easy snack while out shopping for a new sheets/blanket for the boys’ bed on Saturday.  As for the candies……she knows me all to well!  Haha….okay I can’t take credit for that since they were included in the giveaway, but I do love any and all things coffee 🙂

blog photos 119

This I can’t wait to try!  I placed it immediately in the fridge after snapping a quick pic.  I have decided to have some this afternoon after my run.  I thought that would be a great treat after a good run 🙂 

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It was a nice surprise to see this adorable little note pad in the box.  It is perfect for my purse!  I always search for paper when I am out in public to write on, and I have been saying for a while now that I needed to get a little notepad for my purse.  How adorable is this?  Oh and it is about having a cocktail…..see I told you guys she knew me well!!

blog photos 115

Now as if all of the other things weren’t enough already, Farah baked me some of her protein cookies so I would have a little treat with my package.  I mean big treat!  Two zip locks of cookies!  They are so, so yummy.  I immediately had one for my afternoon snack with my iced coffee.  If you follow me on instagram then you would have seen the pic.  I feel in love with these cookies at first bite!  So much so that I immediately went to her blog to look for the recipe so I could make more at home.  I have to admit these babies have been my go to snack in between meals!

So I would like to say THANK YOU to Farrah for such a wonderful box of goodies, and especially for all of the personal touches that she added to the box.  It was such a wonderful treat.  I have come to really cherish her friendship and guidance the past couple of years, and I truly hope to one day meet her and hang out!  She has such an adorable little family, is such an inspiration in fitness, and is becoming the queen of yoga.  Head over to her blog and check her out!


Now for this weeks menu plan

  • Monday – enchiladas………….Mama Peas sweet potato, black bean enchiladas!!!!!!
  • Tuesday – backstrap and baked potato.  Hubster request….that and trying the new oven, will have review on it soon!
  • Wednesday – white beans, rice, and cornbread……just so I can eat some of that hot sauce!
  • Thursday – meatballs and marinara with my lovely pasta!!
  • Friday – leftovers
  • Saturday – eating out most likely
  • Sunday – RIVER DAY – can you tell I’m excited, haha!!

Now as for the workouts this week

  • 3 mile run
  • legs and cardio of choice at gym
  • 4 mile run
  • arms and cardio of choice at gym
  • 2 mile run
  • at home work out, maybe quick run???
  • rest day

I really need to get more consistent with my workouts so I was thinking if I started listing them on blog I would be more likely to follow the plan.  You know how it is, if it is written down it will get done 🙂

Now I am off to work and plan all the house updates I need to plan.  Now I just need to win a lottery to fund said house updates, lol! 

Have a great week!!!


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Two for Tuesday

So how are you guys doing with your fitness goals so far?  Hopefully great!  While I may not be off to the wonderful start I was hoping for (hello sickness and yuckiness) I have continues to push forward with my fitness, as I know many of you are as well!

So today let me share with you some motivational quotes to keep you pumped (no pun intended) up to continue and not give in to the January slump….

You know what I am talking about!  Gyms are always full when the new year hits, but by the end of the month they are back to the usual regulars with a few new ones added!

I guess the main thing I am trying to say today is DONT. BE. A. STATISTIC.

Fitness takes dedication, time, you have to put it as a priority.  It is not going to just work itself out like many would want it to.  You have to make it a part of your life, your routine 🙂

You get out of what you put in.  So you aren’t at your ideal size, weight, level of strength?  Well I am  not where I want to be either!  I am not talking about the number on the scale or  in your jeans.  But I do want to improve my fitness in many ways.  I do want a better body, and I will work for that!

Your body will not change because you wish it that way, trust me I have tried that technique, your body is what you make of it!  So let’s promise ourselves that we will make it the best it can be 🙂


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