fitness. motherhood. life & style.

Vacation Eating Tips

Hi everyone! So I'm pretty excited my blog has been viewed almost 500 times in 6 countries!!!!!! Thank you to everyone for reading :) I was sitting in the Phoenix airport when I started writing this and dwelling over the fact that my body didn't feel 100%  after a few days off of my typical meals. I was in AZ for my ASU MBA orientation which included provided meals like salad but also a few meals that included burgers and pizza. A few months ago, I would't have touched these meals and I would have been stressing over what to do because I was hungry or I would have over ate and stressed over what to do because I felt awful. Now, I am not concerned about these meals and I'm not going to go hungry because I'm stressed about eating pizza (how silly does that sound when you really think about it, but at the time it was a reality for me). I'm also not going to pass up these free catered meals :)

In the past few days I've also had a few people ask me about cheat meals/traveling/etc. I love to travel but for awhile I dreaded it because vacation means cheat meals and at that time for me, it also meant guilt. A lot of people go on vacation and it's an endless buffet for them just because of the word "vacation". For some that is okay but for others trying to still keep their fitness goals in line, that is a disaster waiting to happen. I would be ridiculous to say that people don't want to enjoy themselves on vacation but I would also be ridiculous to say that you can't. Yes, I believe there is a happy balance even when it comes to vacation.

First of all, go out on vacation and enjoy yourself! That is the whole point of a vacation. Enjoy the new foods and drinks but in moderation. If you are use to a healthy diet you may feel somewhat crappy coming home but that's typically just bloating and water retention unless you eat everything in sight. This is how I'm currently feeling but I know I didn't go overboard and I'll work out tomorrow and be fine.
Second, pack some healthy snacks. I use to try and pack meals on vacation but that did not work for me as it may for others. Typically, I would pack meals and they would be disgusting by the time I landed and went to consume them. Packing meals just made me resentful that I couldn’t enjoy a vacation like everyone else and, once again, it caused me to become more obsessive with food. Your best choice is to pack a few healthy snacks that will give you some good options if you don’t want to eat something that is provided.

Something else to keep in mind while traveling is moderation. Think about items that you really want to indulge on and skip the ones you can live without. If you practice moderation, you won't feel so full but you will also get to enjoy the things you really want. Denying a craving on vacation, in my opinion, is the means to a bad vacation. Life is too short not to enjoy little things. Also eat slowly and keep in mind when your body is telling you it is full. Portion control is one of the best things to practice when living a healthy lifestyle and stuffing yourself only leaves you feeling crappy.
The last thing to keep in mind is DON'T FEEL GUILTY! You're only human and humans like to indulge, just be smart about it and enjoy yourself. Guilt is what brought on a lot of my past misery and I refuse to let those feelings sink in again. As soon as they do, I remind myself that I will be back on a normal routine when I'm home. Once I'm home, I typically like to use the sauna for a few days and use my essential oil, DigestZen, to help aid my body in getting rid of any water weight I'm holding on to. The DigestZen (you can search for this through the link) is a new find of mine and it's really helpful when I'm feeling not 100% after vacation. I just rub a little on my stomach and add some to my morning coffee and it seems to get my digestive system right back on track.


Hopefully this helps anyone on vacation! Happy travels!

katie lynn

Essential Oil Shaving Cream

Happy Monday! This weekend I was exploring Pinterest and playing with my oils and came across this awesome shaving cream idea! Due to our dry climate, I've always dealt with having dry skin and I also have sensitive skin. Most shave creams really irritate me and I had yet to find one that didn't bother my skin. After using this one, my skin felt awesome and it wasn't irritated at all!! Win!

To make this shave cream you will need:
-2/3 cup pure Shea butter, 2/3 cup organic coconut oil, 1/4 cup organic olive oil, 10 drops of lavender essential oil and 10 drops of peppermint essential oil (these two oils I also added to my lotion and it helps to soothe my skin, good for eczema as well), and 2 tbsp of baking soda.
I melted the Shea butter and coconut oil then took them off the heat. I then added the olive oil and essential oils. Once everything was mixed, I set the mixture in the fridge to harden. After it was mostly hard, I took it out of the fridge, added the baking soda, and mixed everything together with an electric mixer (can also use a whisk). The mixture should be fluffy and it'll keep for a month! It works perfectly and it's free of all the crap in other shave creams. I found this recipe here.
Enjoy :)


Six Day Detox

Hi everyone! Thank you for sharing my blog and my first post :) I'm really excited about this blog and all the responses meant a lot to me! This week I completed a six day detox that was prescribed by my holistic doctor (her name is Elizabeth, check out her website). So I wanted to touch on detoxing, essential oils, and supplements.

After incorrectly dieting for what felt like forever, my body was really off balance so I started seeing a nutritionist and then a holistic doctor. For those of you that don't know what the holistic practice is, you can learn about it here. I may have found somewhat of a balance between life and fitness but my body has some recovering to do. My nutritionist (Deanna, contact me for her info) had me take a blood test to see just what my body was doing. My blood test showed that I had a lot of hormone issues, some digestive issues, and I was actually lacking a lot of nutrients. I found out that a lot of the vitamins I was taking from places like Walgreens and Walmart either had bad ingredients or lacked what I really needed. If you are going to invest in supplements, make sure you research them! There is no such thing as a "skinny pill" so don't believe any gimmicks. Supplements are meant to benefit your body but they can't be relied on solely to lose weight, etc. Organic supplements are the best and make sure you read the labels. If you have access to a professional, ask for their recommendations.


Some of my staple supplements are a good multi vitamin, vitamin C to strengthen my immune system, a probiotic for healthy digestion, amino's for my muscle recovery/development, iron since I don't eat a lot of red meat, and omega 3 for cardiovascular and joint health. I also added Holy Basil and Maca powder for awhile to regulate some hormone levels like testosterone, estrogen, and cortisol (the stress hormone that makes it hard to lose weight and holy basil can lower it). Vitamin Shoppe has a good selection of organic vitamins to chose from. My nutritionist came up with some natural supplements to try and get my body back on track. She's also been extremely helpful in teaching me how to eat/train smarter instead of harder (that topic will be another post in itself). I then began seeing Elizabeth so that she would be able to read my body and help me find total body balance. By using holistic practices she was able to find out what my body needed in order to recover. If you don't believe in holistic practices let me tell you she was able to read my body and give me the same results that my blood test had given me. She recently had me complete a six day detox to clear my digestive system so that I would have a healthier digestive system and be able to absorb nutrients again. No point in buying all these supplements if I can't benefit from them!


I believe that you have to go through a professional to have access to this detox, but that really is the safest way to detox. When detoxing, you have to be very careful with what you use. I used to use dieter's tea on a regular basis and that has Senna in it which really causes more harm to your digestive system than it does benefit. I also tried a few detox's I found at a local health foods stores and they caused me a lot of stomach pain, nausea, etc. A lot of the "skinny teas" you see online are really a gimmick and can cause a lot of harm to your body. Make sure you look into the ingredients of a detox and make sure it is something that will be gentle on your body. Juicing is a good way to detox because it doesn't make you sick and it's using natures fruits and veggies.

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The first three days of my six day detox consisted of eating only grains, fruits, and veggies. The reason for this is to take some strain off of my digestive system. Sometimes the best part about a detox is giving your digestive system a break! It is a very hard working part of your body. The last three days of my detox, I was able to resume my normal healthy diet but I kept out any heavy food, red meat, etc. Over time, there are things that your body can't digest and they end up just sitting in your body (lots of red meats, nuts, some beans and dairy, etc.) This detox essentially reset my digestive system. I also used essential oils throughout these six days in order to help the process. I added lemon essential oil to my daily gallon of water because it helps in body purification. It's way stronger than just squeezing a lemon in your water because it takes 3000 lemons to make a kilo of this oil! I also used oregano oil to flavor my veggies because it's antibacterial/anti-fungal/antiviral and it helps with digestion and metabolic balance. The third oil I used in my water is called Slim & Sassy and it helped to keep my metabolism going while curbing any cravings I had (it's hard to eat vegan for three days!!) After the detox and the oils, my body is already feeling better (no bloating!). Link to these oils is on my contact info page and here.
My dieting, binging, etc. left my digestive system very overworked and my nutritionist believed I had a little bit of leaky gut syndrome also from consuming a lot of whey protein (I have cut this protein out of my diet because it is so heavy on your stomach). It caused me to have a lack in nutrients because you typically absorb nutrients through your digestive system. Having these digestive problems is just another reason to avoid unhealthy dieting and eating habits. Now that I completed my detox, I should be able to absorb all of the nutrients from my supplements and they will benefit my body to the fullest extent. I'm one step closer to having a healthier body! I strongly recommend a healthy detox to anyone. It's good to detox your life and your body and rid yourself of all of the toxins that gather up over time. I also recommend taking supplements as long as you have researched them and you believe you will benefit from them.


Hopefully this helps some of you who are a little lost when it comes to all the supplements, detox's, etc. on the market. If you every have any questions, feel free to contact me :)

katie lynn

Hello World, This is My Journey to Self Love

Hi everyone! So excited to start blogging! I figured I would start out by talking a little bit about my own fitness journey and how I became so passionate about fitness, health, and self love.

Like any college student, I liked to party. College parties all week long also came with hangovers, late night eating, barely working out, and weight gain! Woo! I'm pretty sure most of us can relate. However, at one point I realized how unhappy I was with myself and February 2013 (after I took that picture below) is when I made the decision to strive for a healthier lifestyle.


I started working out (which really just consisted of cardio) and eating what I thought was healthy (what I saw on social media as "clean food".) I stopped drinking so much as well, lol. The weight started falling off and this worked for me, however, I wasn't always happy. First off, I hate cardio and I hate cardio equipment. If you're a distance runner, we are of a different breed :) Working out was miserable and my first clean recipes tasted awful because I had cut so much out of my diet (even olive oil). I became obsessed with losing weight, punished myself for eating something "bad", avoided social gatherings because of the food and alcohol, and I weighed myself daily while punishing myself for not seeing the scale numbers change. I even recorded my weight on my mirror (picture below) and while this may be motivation for some, it made me obsessive. This lifestyle would never be maintainable but I was determined.


I finally started seeing a trainer (Marisa Hausenfleck) so that I could learn how to lift weights and get some strength back like I had in my cheerleading days. She also taught me how much consistency paid off and I was able to reach my original weight while working with her. I then decided that I wanted to train for a fitness show in order to show off my year long hard work. My friend Jenny (jenny_chuchu on insta) helped to train me and teach me the ins and outs of competing because she was a successful competitor. In March 2014, I successfully competed in a local OCB show and I was the skinniest I had ever been. I was proud of how I looked and how dedicated I was and it was a HUGE accomplishment, but I still wasn't happy.


I felt like I had lost some friendships because I avoided social situations so much. I was so dedicated I even went to Vegas and packed all of my healthy food. Eat some grilled chicken while watching your friends eat In and Out and tell me how you like that, lol. After my show I wanted to build muscle and strength but I couldn't find any kind of balance in my life. it's hard to explain just how miserable I was at this point and it's something a lot of competitors may be able to relate to. I couldn't find motivation to work out, I wanted to eat healthy but hated it at the same time, I lost all portion control (binge and restrict pattern), I would eat badly then just try to get it out of my body, my strict dieting had messed up my hormones and I gained weight much quicker than I ever had, I wanted to go out and have a social life again but I would feel guilty for eating or drinking with everyone else. Being so strict and hard on myself for over a year was what brought me to this point. The only good thing about my struggles, were that I knew I wanted this healthy lifestyle and I wasn't going to give up on it.

Looking back I also realize that my self image was completely distorted. I remember taking the picture above and thinking I was fat. It all was a vicious cycle but I was determined to get out of it and come out on top. I started working with Berenice Salazar (ladyfit is her instagram) because she had gone through this same type of what I would consider an eating disorder. She told me something that changed a lot for me. She told me to focus on my health and not on just what I looked like. I realized this whole time I was working on my "health journey" I really was just trying to look good and I wasn't in it for the right reasons. This includes mental health. Being miserable wasn't worth being really skinny.

I started doing what I loved like hanging out with friends, weight lifting/sprints, and cooking healthy but tasty meals with healthy food I enjoyed (I used to not even eat bananas because they had too much sugar and that is ridiculous!) I wrote recipes for the blog Sparkling from the Inside Out. I kept traveling and enjoying life. I started seeing a nutritionist and holistic doctor to try and find out what I needed to get past this mentally and how to get my hormones regulated from the damage I had caused myself. Instead of being hard on myself I started focusing on self love. It took me up until a few weeks ago to finally feel like I had balance in my life. I'm strong, I enjoy weight lifting (you have to find a workout you enjoy) and coming up with new healthy recipes, I eat lots of good whole foods and enjoy some "unhealthy" foods every now and then (but in the right portions and without guilt). I don't feel guilty and I'm completely happy with myself and being strong not stick thin. My hormones have finally regulated and I was able to lose some of the fat I had gained while being stuck in my vicious cycle.

I remember a few months ago feeling like there was no light at the end of this tunnel. That I would forever be unhappy and I would never be able to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Now, feeling much better these last few weeks I decided to create this blog. I know there are girls out there struggling with some kind of body issues due to the media in our society and I see you. There is light at the end of this tunnel. You can be healthy and happy. Never give up on what you want! My "health journey" wasn't always glamorous but it taught me a lot and brought me to the point where I can live a balanced lifestyle and love how I look and how I feel. :)

katie lynn
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