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Rainbows and Unicorns

© 2014 Zakeena. Licensed under CC-BY.

The past week has been full of milestones for Americans.  For a practical person, I suddenly feel like everything’s rainbows and unicorns!  What has me walking around with a silly grin?  Let’s cover the setinel events in alphabetical order.

Affordable Care Act

I’ve been in support of the ACA since the beginning. Too many Americans were going without medical care or going into serious debt becuase they didn’t have insurance.

Now over 16 million citizens previously unisured are now covered AND the number of uninsured dropped 35% as of March 2015.

Then there’s the cost savings.  The rate of spending increases has dramatically slowed.  It’s thought this is related to the fact that more people are insured leading to better health and more controlled prices.

Confederate Flags

When learning of the tragic, senseless deaths of the nine members of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina I was afraid nothing would change as a result.

While I doubt anything will change in terms of gun control,  their deaths have led to a sea change in terms of one particular symbol of hate. Within a week, numerous retailers pulled products with the Confederate flag design.

Even more surprising was the quick shift of conservative South Carolina politicans regarding the topic. It looks like they will be able to remove the confederate flag from flying on the capital grounds. Other states are taking a critical look and talking about potentially changing their flags.

What has been controversial and seemingly unchangeable for decades is just about to go by the wayside.  Yes, it is a part of our history and the proper place is in books and museums.

Gay Marriage

Sixty years ago when my father’s brother married out of his race to an Asian woman, my grandparents were not happy. Marrying anyone of another race was illegal in our country at one time.

I believe   they came to love my auntie but it took them getting to know her to change their racist viewpoint.  Now, there are many interracial marriages in my extended family.

Some day Americans will look back and wonder what the big deal was and what took so long.  I think a lot of the change was once the LGBT community came out we realized they were our family, friends, neighbors.  How could we deny them the right to marry the person they love?

It’s a pretty great time to be living in the United States and I’m proud of us for eventually getting to the right side of things even if it wasn’t easy or pretty.


Tales From the Scale: FitBloggin’ Bound


Just a few of the fantastic people I’ll be hugging tomorrow!

Tomorrow morning I’m Denver bound to attend Fitbloggin’ 15!  It’s my third time and what I’m most looking forward to is being with a fantastic group of people I only see once a year (or less).

Of course I’ll also get to make some new friends and eat bacon!  If you’re at the conference and checking out my blog, here’s my about page.

Food Plan

For the most part, I’m eating pretty healthy.  Just with one or two treats every day.  The treats might be ice cream or pistachios; it just depends.  Here are some of the meals I’ve had recently.


This was a burger from a business trip a couple of weeks ago.  I ate all the meat but half the bun and 1/3 of the fries. Delicious! (Dinner that night was a salad with chicken)

breakfast-buffetA healthy breakfast!  The egg white omelet was awesome!


Interestingly the conference served a vegetarian lunch to everyone.  The starter was a roasted tomato soup, followed by this salad with roasted vegetables wrap and berries for dessert.


I met Denise for breakfast after working out Saturday morning and had my favorites from Starbucks: nonfat coffee misto and spinach feta wrap.


I have to let you know I do eat at home so here’s a picture of one of the new Nutrisystem meals I tried.  It’s the steak with quinoa which was delicious!  I also sauteed some squash.


I haven’t weighed myself at all for three weeks and it’s been kind of liberating.  I know I’m not gaining much (if at all) because my clothes are fitting fine… even my tightest slacks. :)

I needed a break from focusing on weight, counting calories and such.  My break ends after 4th of July weekend so there will be future weigh-ins.



Not only did I make it to Kaia Fit for class every 5 am session last week but I also did a double on Saturday.  Woo hoo!  First time for everything.


After Monday’s workout.

I  will get in plenty of workouts this week as I usually make it to two a day at Fitbloggin’.

The highlight the past couple of weeks was when Kaia Fit founder, Nikki Warren, attended our 5 am class AND since we had an odd number doing partner workouts she was my partner.  Girl Crush!


She was motivating, fun and takes way better selfies than me!

Challenges Ahead

I’m relaxing and not considering these challenges but opportunities.  I’m traveling this week and again for the Fourth of July weekend.  I’m going to mix healthy eating with splurges.  My goal is to get enough movement in to balance the extra food.

How are you doing on your health and wellness journey?

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Active wear is a big part of my wardrobe and you’ve seen me wearing my favorite brand, Katie K. Active, not only here but on instagram, Facebook and twitter.  I started buying the tops and pants after seeing friends wearing them at last year’s Fitbloggin’.

That’s why I approached them asking to be one of their ambassadors this year.  Guess who was dancing around the house when she got the invitation? :)

5 Reasons to Buy Katie K Active


1. Quality. I can’t say enough about the quality of Katie K activewear.  I’ve worn my outfit I bought last July just about every week once or twice and they still look new.  I haven’t had any loose threads, seams tears, nothing.  They are extremely well made.

2. Value. Katie K Active is competitively priced and in fact probably less than other brands you’re familiar with.  Combine the prices with the quality and it’s a great value.  Trust me, I’m cheap and I’ve purchases outfits from them several times!

3. Sizes.  One of the reasons I was first attracted to Katie K is that they serve the plus size community with sizes ranging from S through 3X.  Not a lot of fitness wear companies do that.  There’s a handy dandy size chart so you can figure out which size to buy but I can tell you they are true to size.  I wear a size large top in regular clothing and also do with Katie K fitness tops.

4. Style. As you’ll see in the spring collection items I received the Katie K line is very stylish and this is a sample.  You’ll want to check out the entire collection and find your favorites.

5. Company. Katie K Active was founded by Katie Kozloff, an entrepreneur and personal trainer.  She  founded the company because she believed all women from size 2 to 24 hould have a beautiful, high-end option for clothing for exercise or a casual day out.  She’s also wants to connect women on their fitness and health journeys and started the #DefineBrave movement.  Join the Facebook group here!

BONUS: Use my ambassador code KAY15  when making a purchase and get 15% off with free shipping.

Before leaving for Italy I received some activewear from the Katie K. Spring 2015 collection and outside that two week period have been wearing them ever to Kaia Fit and one item goes with me everywhere!

Wearing Katie K Spring Collection

Wearing Katie K Spring Collection

Signature Open Back Tee



If you’ve been reading a while you know fashion is not my forte.  I decided to go for it and step outside my comfort zone (and #definebrave) with the new signature open back tee.  I should have done this a long time ago because I got so many compliments in class.  It’s cute and functional!

I personally would wear a tank under it when exercising or wear it over my fitness top after a workout.  It comes in your choice of three colors: coral as shown above, citrus and vivid blue!

Signature Urban Capri


My other Katie K bottoms only have color around the waist where they are covered by my workout top usually.  So I decided to bring on the color and selected the signature urban capris in coral.  There are contrast stripes along the side  of the sweat-wicking, semi-compression stretch capris.

The fabric is lightweight and the capris have my favorite feature – a generous side pocket  Other colors available are vivid blue, citrus and black.

Free Flow Cardigan


The free flow cardigan is the piece I wear everywhere.  It’s perfect for those cool mornings (it was only 60 degrees here when I went to class at 5 am) or when you’re stopping by the grocery store after a workout.


It has 6% spandex which helps it keep the shape but feels very cozy.   One cool feature is that it’s UV rated 40+.   This open front shawl is offered in coral or black.

Which piece would you buy first?


Snacking with Blue Diamond Almond Nut Thins

This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond Nut Thins.  As a member of the Blue Diamond Tastemakers I was given product for review purposes.  I’m not being compensated and all opinions expressed are 100% mine.


Blue Diamond almonds and almond milk are a regular part of my diet so I was looking forward to trying crackers made with almonds when asked.  When the boxes of Blue Diamond Nut & Rice Cracker Snacks arrived, I was ready to snack.


First I checked out the nutritional facts though.  I loved getting 16 crackers for 120 calories plus 3 grams of protein. Of course they’re made with real almonds and not only are they wheat free but even certified gluten-free.


For the first box I paired the crackers with my favorite “healthy” dip, Trader Joe’s Spinach and Kale Greek Yogurt dip.  The crackers were a perfect match for the dip and I loved the nutty, crunchy cracker.  This snack was perfect for late afternoon when my stomach wants dinner but it’s too early.

I had hummus on hand for the second box and it worked just as well. :) A word of advice is to count out the crackers and put the box away.  It’s hard to stop at one serving!

I think these cracker snacks work best with lighter toppings due to their thin nature.  If you’re a cook they’d make a wonderful cracker breading.

The crackers come in seven flavors (Almond, Hint of Sea Salt, Pecan, Smokehouse, Cheddar Cheese, Country Ranch and Pepper Jack Cheese) and I’m looking forward to trying them all.  What’s your favorite afternoon snack?


Tales from the Scale: Post Italy


It’s my first Monday back from vacation and the first day of June.  I think that makes it a perfect day to get back to my healthy habits in terms of nutrition and fitness.

Food Plan

The plan in Italy was to forget about any food plan.  I enjoyed all the …..










and bread — lots of carbs!



I didn’t do formal workouts while in Italy.  There just wasn’t time with the hectic pace of the tour.  But there was lots of walking including going up the steep Spanish steps.


Here’s a week in Italy per my Fitbit. The highest daily total was 20,271 steps for 8.3 miles on May 16th.  The lowest daily total (not including the day I was sick in bed) was 10,804 steps for 4.4 miles.

Today I’m going back to my Kaia Fit workouts.  It’s still BRIK but I’m going to just do 4 workouts a week for the remainder of the session to ease into it.


Not unexpectedly my scale does show a gain.  I’m just impressed it’s such a small amount given the amount of eating we did.  I gained three pounds bringing the total weight loss back to:

-46.6 Pounds

 Challenges Ahead

The challenge this week will be getting back on track in terms of food and exercise.  I have stocked up and have no social events so it’s quite doable.

Do you give yourself permission to indulge during vacations?

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