BEAUTIFUL YOGA MATS

Beautiful Yoga Mats

Magic Carpet Yoga Mats Traditional Mat // NamaSpace Dream Catcher Mat // Lululemon The Mat (no slip) // YetiYoga Stripe Mat // Magic Carpet Yoga Mat Turquoise/Deco // La Vie Boheme Yoga Mandala Travel Yoga Rug (pre-order) // SKLZ Trainer Mat (not pretty, but helpful!)

Beautiful mats that help you find your inner peace & guidance. That way you can you can yoga on or meditate with ease (I absolutely LOVE the La Vie Boheme rug!)

And if you’d like to get more into Yoga, you can try some of these fun Star Wars Yoga poses! I’m a meditation girl, but I might have to do yoga more in Boba Fett’s poses. I do love doing the Warrior II (& Warrior III) pose!

[How to clean your Lululemon mat straight from a Lululemon rep thatI just contacted for this purpose (and probably a good way to clean most of them this way): "The best wash method for your yoga mat is to take a damp cloth to clean your mat. You may use the cleaning spray which your studio may have or any cleaner that doesn't contain any solvents. Also, we recommend soaking your mat about once a month in water and baking soda. It is best to lay flat to dry for your mat."]

WEEKENDER

Instagram Life Coach

1 | Weekend reads. I’ve been learning a lot and absolutely love becoming a student of life. See point 5.
2 | Dancing. I’m starting to dance things out in life. I take 10 to 20 mins out of my day, put on some jams, and just release. It’s wonderfully therapeutic and Thor of course joins in (he has a love/hate relationship with dancing). I get that this sounds silly, but there’s nothing like dancing… and I can’t dance.
3 | Can’t leave my dog alone because this is what happens. So many destroyed items in one hour. This boy needs a therapist. He has issues.
4 | There’s been a few new changes (actually, lots) this week including realizing if I wake up at 5am I have 3 hours of peace & quiet. Serenity. The time when most of LA is still asleep, and here I am enjoying the stillness, the quiet, the cool breeze before the day gets hot, the smell of the morning and the smell of bakeries enriching the air, and my own contentness. It’s my favorite time and I feel like it starts my day perfectly.
5 | Well here you have it. What I am working towards in my life.
6 | You might roll your eyes and think I’m some new age “weirdo”, but stay with me on this… There are things in life I’m drawn to and always have been. One being numbers, and the second being stones. I don’t talk about either much because they’re personal (no big reason why, but why say “Hey! I love stones!”). I think both have a very interesting scientific and spiritual connection.
7 | Such a theme this week! It’s definitely been a lot more spiritual and finding happy in the world (like roller coasters, I love them and yet I close my eyes on them. There’s something about having no control over something and just being in the moment)
8 | I love you oatmeal. Especially when you taste like hazelnut chocolate cake. A custom blend I made over at MyOatmeal.com
9 | Uh. Because I always need new notebooks (my simpsons moleskine that I just got, and a donut notebook from paper source). Perfect combo… especially when I can’t eat donuts right now.

[more images & progress images can be found on my instagram @kirstencupcake]

Happy in Everyday

Happy Moments in Your Everyday life

What am I doing talking about happiness?! Where are fitness and health posts!? Well, I think getting happy is ultra important in our wellness & fitness journey, so a good handful of posts each month will be talking about positivity, health, wellness, and anything else that feeds your soul and makes you smile. I believe in achieving a happy life because a happy life leads you to be the best you can be (an unhappy person will find it hard to work on themselves and that means your gym motivation or eating habits will be affected negatively).

When you’re happy you want to live more and experience more. In order to work on the outside you have to work on the inside. There’s nothing more true than that statement.  I’m going to create a list of things that make me happy I then want you to follow my instructions below that list to find your own happiness that you can use on a rough day.


the smell of vanilla  heart  waking up with perfect hair  heart  the feeling when a new idea strikes me  heart  when it’s cool and peaceful at night while I’m walking my dog  heart  finding forgotten about dollar bills in your pocket or purse  heart  eating your favorite meal of the day  heart  when I smell the ocean 15 miles inland because it’s smell to the wind  heart  seeing palm trees dance against a blue sky  heart  my moms nourishing words  heart  a cool, refreshing shower to remove the daily sweat  heart  when I walk in the door and my dog is happy to see me like he hasn’t seen me for days  heart  finishing up my work to do list  heart  when a book moves you that you have a happy emotional response  heart  having a great gym workout  heart  shorts on a hot day  heart  puppies  heart  having your favorite Instagram or Twitter account respond to your comments  heart  the smell of clean laundry  heart  snuggling in lots of blankets on a cold day  heart  the smell of fresh bread  heart  when an item you wanted to buy that day ends up on a mega sale  heart  seeing an old favorite movie for the first time in years again  heart  the first bite of a perfectly ripe pineapple  heart  eating pizza for the first time in months  heart  seeing the stars at night  heart  when there’s time left on the meter you just pulled up to  heart  when the mailman brings you a package of awesome things  heart  the sound of a thunderstorm at night while you’re inside in the comfort of your warm home  heart  laughing so hard it hurts your sides  heart  dancing alone at home  heart  randomly remembering something funny and laughing out loud  heart  your favorite book being made in to a movie  heart  waking up to the smell of coffee (can replace coffee with bacon)  heart summer carnivals with the one(s) you love

This weekend (or whenever you can) I want you to set aside an hour of “me” time and grab a seat in a comfortable spot, have a cup of coffee or tea, find your favorite pen, your journal or a piece of paper (although, I do prefer a cherished notebook because it’s then written in a happy spot that you can’t mistake for trash and not in the midst of budgeting and to do list scribbles) and start writing things down that make you happy in your daily life. It could be personal moments like the way your child waves goodbye before he leaves for school or the smell of fresh cut grass. And when life seems like it’s giving you lemons and nothing is going right I want you to turn to these notes, grab a comfortable seat, and just relax. Ponder over your list and with one item on your list at a time (one that stands out to you) I want you to close your eyes and think about a few questions about that item… Why did you write down that happy moment? What is it about that item that makes you smile? What visuals does this bring up? Is there a smell that’s attached to a wonderful memory? Repeat for as many as you want, but don’t just stop with one. Keep going!

 

 

Curb Your Tastebuds

Here are some great ideas that I use almost everyday to help curb my delicious carb & fat food thoughts. Which should tell you right there that if you’re like me and love those sweets that it will always be a battle of willpower. But don’t fret, you’re not failing if you need a little help from other items. It’s completely normal to not be able to shut down those cravings completely and replace them with desires for healthy options like kale.

dessertgum

1I’ve talked about gum before, but I’m not sure I broke down the reasons why I love it. I think people who love food and eat just because, have an oral fixation. When we eat without even feeling hungry we’re eating because we’re attaching it to a feeling and at the time it might be the only solution we can think of to take our mind off of those feelings (boredom, stress, anger, upset). So we eat because we want the taste (a pleasure) & chew (an action)… not because we’re filling our tummies. Sugar-free gum offers all of that, and it comes in all types of flavors including dessert flavors (the cinnamon roll flavor is NOT gross). Sometimes I eat the dessert gum (it actually helps if you do have a meal coming up and don’t want to taint the flavor) or if I want to ruin all cravings of sugar I’ll eat mint gum. Mint gum prevents me from following it with a chocolate bar.

articzero

2

Have you heard of this ice cream brand? If you have a sweet tooth and feel like you need a quick fix that’s a little more than gum or maybe you want to join all your friends and family this summer during a hot day with a bowl of your own (not cone!), then this brand is of you. The container (a pint) is the same size as Ben & Jerry’s, but about 900 calories less. The whole pint is 150 calories! It comes in all sorts of flavors like Sea Salt Caramel, Coconut, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Cookies & Cream, and many more. It does contain milk products (added protein), and the texture isn’t quite the same as normal ice cream (remember, it’s the healthy option and sacrifices had to be made), but it’s as good as you’re going to get in the ice cream world unless you can figure out how to cream ice cubes.

flavoredcoffee

3

My best friend, Mrs. Coffee. Not only is it a great drink to have pre-workout (it amps up your energy helping you burn more calories), but it’s great all the time! I used to be a coffee snob before I really got into fitness, and while I could have remained one (and that would have been fine) it wouldn’t have led me to dessert flavored coffees. I know, I know, I have a problem with desserts, but hey… if I can curb it with these items, I’m ok! I just bought a Keurig system to have instant coffee that isn’t instant coffee. I needed to be able to not grind my beans anymore and make them in a French Press (my old coffee snob ways). I needed my drink, fast. If you have a coffee machine and aren’t a coffee snob (and do enjoy flavored coffees) then I recommend Dunken Donut’s Chocolate Donut. If you have a Keurig my recommendations go to Cinnabon’s Cinnamon Roll, or Green Mountain Coffee’s Mocha Coconut (another doughnut flavor — I LOVE doughnuts!)

kernelseasons4

One of the least healthy curbings on this list, but I do my best sometimes and sometimes my best needs a bad faux cheat. I don’t eat a lot of it because it’s pretty much all chemicals (I’m hanging my head in shame right now, don’t judge me!). Kernel Season’s popcorn seasoning is low in calories (0 to 5 calories depending on the flavor), and is mediocre in sodium levels, but because I don’t use the recommended amount I’m actually getting a lot less. This stuff on egg whites or your green beans (I actually use a tiny shake or 3 of Ranch seasoning on the beans) kicks it in the pants a bit. I want to do the whole kissing of my fingers to the air and say “bellissimo!”… But I won’t (I think only a quality meal deserves that phrase and not a chemical enriched meal). I’ve been eating plain egg whites for over a year now (every day about 5 to 6 egg whites depending on my eating plan that month), so after a while plain egg whites got really REALLY boring and so did all the salt-free spices I used with them. I go in taste rotations. Next month I could love plain egg whites again and do that for a while.

mustards

5

MUSTARD! The fitness person’s go-to for condiments! I’m not even kidding on this one. In my fridge I have about 5-8 different types of mustard (dijon, spicy brown, sweet hot, horseradish mustard, etc.). I just discovered this brilliant brand called Beaver who makes Hickory Bacon Mustard. It’s 10 calories for a tsp so you have to be nice about using it, but it’s low in sodium as far as mustards go. It’s my splurging mustard (is that sad to admit?). I maybe use a tsp of this as that favorite flavor I save till last and the rest of my meal is eaten with yellow mustard. By the way, did you know you can improve your yellow mustard by mixing it with a little Sriracha or adding a little bit of paprika, onion powder, some water, and a sweetener of choice (like stevia)? It’s damn good. I dare you to go experiment!

ToraniSugarFree

6

Sugar-free Torani Syrups. Oh yes, you are a perfect addition to my coffee. I know they make other sugar-free syrups that would be great with club soda (i.e. cherry lime, peach, etc — have you tried this out? I’d love to give that a go one day), but for now I strictly stick to sugar-free vanilla. A little bit of this, a sweetener (stevia), and a few shakes of cinnamon in one of my specialty dessert coffee flavors and its mind-blowing.

 

 

waldenfarmssyrup

7

Zero calorie syrups by Walden Farms. YUM! Pancake, chocolate, strawberry and blueberry syrup are great in plain oatmeal. Just drizzle a little on top, add some cinnamon (maybe not for the strawberry flavor), and it brings your healthy oatmeal to a whole new level. They’re not really packed with crazy chemicals except for the flavors used to create these. Obviously, all these curbing foods I’ve suggested have chemicals in them to keep them low to no calories, so it’s a decision you need to make for yourself if you want to go this route. I applaud you and bow to you if you can make kale your go to curbing. Walden Farm’s also makes BBQ sauce (which everyone I know loves) and zero calorie salad dressings (the best are thousand island dressing and sesame ginger).

waterenchancers

8

A little water love. Not too much to say about these because they are what they are. If you need to drink that extra flavor, you have a lot of options here. I love the Arnold Palmer Half & Half to drink and the Crush Grape flavor to make into popsicles (in disposable paper cups since regular popsicle molds won’t work — there’s no sugar or gelatin in these). Those of course being the really unhealthy versions. Then there’s the Skinnygirl brands which are made with Stevia! Just don’t go drinking your daily water gallon filled with these… I think that would be like considering diet soda apart of your gallon. Just doesn’t work like that, unfortunately!

zeviasoda9I do love my Zevia! Made with Stevia (get it?!) and sold now at most grocery stores. They make a handful of imitation flavors to rival big brand beverages (cola, root beer, mountain zevia, grape, cream soda), and they’re all quite delicious. I drink these when I need that extra refreshing carbonation zing.

July 25, 2014 - 7:09 am

Link Love & Special Deliveries | Fit for a Bride - […] up some tips to Curb Your Tastebuds from Fit Plus […]

Healthy Sweet Potato Fries

fit_plus_fab-clean_sweet_potato_friesHealthy Recipe FriesClean Sweet Potato Fries Recipe

I know there are a ton of sweet potato fry recipes out there, so I thought I might as well show you my take on the very HEALTHY carb. It’s an unbelievably clean and flavorful recipe that goes great with a side of green veggies and your protein of choice (maybe a turkey burger!).

INGREDIENTS (makes enough for 2)

  • 1 lg. sweet potato (well, really it’s a garnet yam)
  • water
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder (can substitute for fresh minced garlic, 1-2 cloves)
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/8 to 1/4 tsp cayenne (depending how spicy you want them)
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • olive oil spray

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 375°F
  • Cut your sweet potatoes into wedges.
  • In a sauce pan, boil some water and add in your sweet potato wedges. Make sure the water covers your sweet potatoes. Bring it back to a boil and let cook for 10 mins uncovered (or until tender). Drain.
  • Line a baking sheet with foil and coat it with a light spray of olive oil. Place the wedges on the sheet (careful they could be hot) and make sure they’re separated.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the cumin, garlic, paprika and cayenne and then sprinkle half the spice mixture evenly on the wedges (no need to worry about coating the other side in this step).
  • Bake in the oven for 15-20 mins.
  • Remove baking sheet from the oven and start flipping over the wedges (they’re hot!). Sprinkle the remaining mixture on the flipped side, and place them back in the oven. Bake for another 15-20 mins.
  • Remove from oven and sprinkle oregano over the wedges. No need to flip them for this as it’s just an added garnish.
  • Ta-Da! Clean sweet potatoes with minimal oil, and no salt!