Monday, June 20, 2016

Clean Body 28 Day Natural Tea Cleanse - A Review

Hi babes! Well it's the first day of summer, and I couldn't be happier! I don't get summer off work, but my schedule does change a bit. And even though I'm not a huge fan of the balmy jersey heat, I still love the adventure that summer brings with all my outdoor workouts, hikes, and the occasional trips to the beach. My daily workouts are in full swing and I try to get outside for about an hour each day - even when it's 90+ degrees! 

Obviously, this doesn't all just happen magically. I need to be on a bit of a schedule. And as much as I don't like to plan every aspect of my life, sometimes it's just necessary to make things happen. Which brings me to the reason for this post. A couple months ago I was sent a lovely package from a Tea Company to try out and I was beyond excited. I do love my rather large morning cup of coffee, but when I'm at work for the morning, I love to drink several cups of tea. It curbs my appetite, keeps me alert (not all the cups I drink contain caffeine), and just gives me a general feeling of well-being. 

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Lisa from Full Leaf Tea Company was so generous to send me a few sample sizes of their loose fruit flavored teas - these are great for work! And what I've been loving most of all.... The Clean Body 28 Day Natural Tea Cleanse. There are Two different teas included in the kit and there's enough tea for, well... 28 days. The first Tea is...

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Rich organic oolong tea is blended to perfection with ginger root and cinnamon chips giving a kick-start to your metabolism when you need it most.  All ingredients are proven to help in weight loss and all have metabolism boosting properties. 
and the other is ....

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Enjoy a gentle detox throughout the day or while you sleep. This herbal blend of holy basil (tulsi), spearmint, rose hips, lemon myrtle and linden blossoms creates a sweet mint and citrus flavor for all day enjoyment. Detox Rejuvenation is a nutrient-dense, alkaline forming blend which aids in digestion and internal purification. It will help cleanse and balance both body and mind.  

Ok, so my initial thoughts on the Cleanse before I even got them. If you're on Instagram, you've probably seen a million "Tea-Toxes", especially if you're into following fitness-related accounts. I have nothing against these Tea-toxes. Prior to receiving this package, I've never even tried one. I know a lot of people seem to like them. But when I've looked over the ingredients in the past, I've seen some that contain concerning ingredients in the nighttime blends (mostly the teas that claim to cleanse the colon) and this is scary for me. I've tried similar products in the past and they were uncomfortable and caused issues for me. That being said, not all of these Tea-toxes have this, just be careful and read your ingredients. 

So I initially started out using this like your average Cleanse program. I would wake in the morning and have my normal cup of coffee, and then bring the Skinny Me tea with me to work. If you look on the Full Leaf website, you will see that it states that Filtered Water must be used with this tea and can effect taste. Well let me tell you.... That's an understatement! We have a water cooler at work with Spring water, and it majorly effected the taste of the tea. I brought a fruit tea with me to work and used the cooler, and it did NOT taste good. But using my 3-stage filtration system at home, it tasted really good! Just keep that in mind if you place an order. So with this issue, rather than bringing a jug of my own water with me, I started drinking the tea at home. And this actually worked out to be better! 

I came across an article not too long ago (I read so many that I can't remember where I saw it), about the benefits of Oolong Tea about an hour or so before a workout. Now as you saw on the little blurb about the Skinny Me tea, this tea is said to boost your metabolism, and maybe that's true drinking it in the morning and going about your day. But using it as a pre-workout of sorts is said to have TONS of benefits. Since I can't have my tea in the morning, and my workouts tend to be mid-afternoon, this is what I started doing. And I love it!!! 

Now on to the nighttime Detox Tea. I love this tea so much for several reasons. If it is detoxing, I don't feel any ill effects like I have from other "detox" teas in the past. I love love love the taste. And it's the perfect way for me to get myself prepared for sleep. I don't have issues sleeping, but sometimes I do have trouble unwinding. This isn't like a "sleepy time" tea. It doesn't make you drowsy, it just makes you really relaxed. It has a very nice taste - I love Tulsi and Spearmint! It's honestly hard to describe, but it's just a nice way to end the night. I usually drink my cup with a tiny bit of raw honey while I'm just sitting down to watch my 9pm show before bed. I love that I feel relaxed and ready to go to sleep by the end, but not all zonked out, like I can't finish my show. 

I would absolutely recommend these blends! I think they fit very well in my daily routine and I would definitely buy them when I run out. I can't make any claims as far as weight-loss. I personally did not lose any weight. But I feel like if they are worked into a healthy eating, and good fitness regimen, they would be a huge benefit! Especially since they're mild, but effective. I love that!

Want to win a 28 Day Cleanse of your own? Make sure to stop over to my Instragram Feed where I'm giving away a Full Size, 28 day cleanse to one lucky winner! You can only access this giveaway on there, so look for the post and check out the directions - I keep it pretty simple ; )

Good Luck!!! And if you try any of Lisa's amazing blends, stop back and let me know! 

DISCLAIMER: In exchange for my honest opinion, as stated above, I was sent a sample of product to try. All opinions are my own and I was not financially compensated in any way. The giveaway specified is not affiliated with blogger or instagram.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Sunwarrior Protein - A Review

I'm so happy it's Friday. It's always so nice to have a 4 day week following a long weekend. It's like a bonus! I wanted to make sure to kick off the weekend with a review and also a couple healthy recipes! A while back I was sent a package from Sunwarrior, a company I'm already familiar with and like very much. Even though I have purchased their protein in the past, I was excited because I was sent a few envelopes in assorted flavors and blends to try. Long ago, when I was Vegetarian for a spell, I relied heavily on protein powder every single day to meet my protein needs - Sunwarrior was my go-to! Though ultimately I decided that I need a little meat in my diet (we'll save that for a future post) , I still like to consume protein in snack form or as a post-workout meal replacement. I also love to add it to muffins, pancakes, etc to make quick breakfasts or protein laced snacks for my son.

Though I'm not a huge fan of Stevia, it's extremely difficult to find a protein powder without it. If you do, you risk high sugar content as well. I just don't love the taste. But it's not super detectable in this protein and there are ways to help cut the taste as well. My past purchase was the Chocolate Warrior Blend - a raw vegan protein that contains pea protein, cranberry protein, and hemp seed protein, as well as cherry extract, medium chain triglycerides, and a few other ingredients.

I was also sent the Classic & Classic Plus proteins as well. The Classic contains Brown Rice protein as the protein form. The Plus is very similar but also contains pea, quinoa, chia seed, and amaranth in addition to the brown rice in it's protein blend. The overall winner for me is still the Warrior Blend in Chocolate. I feel that Chocolate often hides that protein flavor a lot of powders have and though I think that quinoa, amaranth, and rice proteins can be a great addition to a diet, I do try to watch my grain intake. Grains can be very difficult for me to digest.

Warrior Blend tastes pretty good and I really find that the ingredients work well for me! With 17g of protein, it's an awesome quick breakfast or recovery snack! It's still my fav =)

Make sure to check out this recent post where I shared my son's favorite snack incorporating the Warrior Blend - Protein Cookies!!! You could easily swap this out for the Classic or Classic Plus! And the most simple, but my favorite.....  The recipe for my quick and tasty Post-Workout Protein Pudding. I eat this after a heavy workout or when I'm craving something sweet and want to feel like I'm eating something bad! I love it because it's quick, easy, and you can easily add in little mix-ins of your choice!

Easy Protein Pudding
serves 1 

~ 1 packet or scoop of Chocolate protein powder - I like Warrior Blend, but you can use any blend or flavor! 

~ 1/2 a large banana

~ Dash of Cinnamon

~ 1 Tsp Cacao powder (I like mine chocolaty)

~ Pinch of Sea Salt

~ 1 tsp sunbutter or almond butter

~ 1/4 cup of filtered water

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour in a small bowl or ramekin and add the mix-ins of your choice. Maybe a little dried fruit, puffed rice, slivered almonds - whatever you love! 

If you try it! Make sure to stop back and let me know what you think!! And make sure to check out the Sunwarrior website! Happy Weekend!!!

DISCLAIMER: I was provided a PR Sample package in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own. I was not compensated for this post. 

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Easy Protein Cookies

Hi Loves!

I know it's been forever, and I don't usually post on weekends. I do have so much amazing news to share, but I wanted to make sure to get on here to post my protein cookies I made tonight. Have I had protein cookies before? Sure! Look on Pinterest and you'll find a thousand recipes easily!!! But the thing that stands out in these cookies is the protein. I'm a huge fan of disguising healthy snacks as something completely junkie. I have a 13 year old boy and anything healthy I can get past his lips is a HUGE plus in my eyes!!! Cue the cookies. So using a clean protein is a must. You can click through in the recipe below to find what I'm using. So here we go....

12 servings 

~ 1 scoop or packet Plant Protein - I like Sunwarrior Warrior Blend!
~ 2 bananas, mashed until pretty mushy
~ 3/4 - 1 cup rolled oats, I used Bob's Red Mill to keep it Gluten-free
~ 1 tsp Cinnamon
~ 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
~ pinch of sea salt
~ 1 tsp aluminum-free, gluten-free Baking Powder
~ 1/4 cup of mix-in of your choice. I used Enjoy Life Choc Chips!

Preheat your oven to 350F. Mix all ingredients together until well mixed. There's no real science here. I started with the mashed bananas, then added the oats and other dry ingredients. Once they're all mixed, grab a spoon and scoop onto a parchment covered baking sheet. You should come out with 12. Depending on your oven, they should take anywhere from 15 to 20 minutes or so. I flipped them over close to the end. Just cook until they reach your desired crispiness.

PS - this is not a crispy cookie. It's got more of a chewy consistency, but will crisp a bit on the outside. Just a small price to pay for a cookie with very limited ingredients and a bit of protein! By the way, these cookies are also vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free, non-gmo, and free of artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives! Yay!!!

So that's it! Super simple & healthy! If you end up trying them or adding a fun mix-in, stop back and let me know what you think!!!

DISLAIMER: I was provided with sample packets of a few flavors of Sunwarrior for my review. All opinions are my own. I was not compensated for this post. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Why I need a NuFace Trinity - A Review

Happy New Year! I can't believe it's been so long since my last post. The holidays flew by!!! I hope all of you had an amazing Holiday =)I'm so excited to share this post with you!!! I have been lusting after, actually coveting really, this one specific beauty device for quite some time. After a summer spent running outside with no added sunblock and furrowing from the sun, and a 35th birthday this past September, my skin has been left looking like a hot mess.

More specifically a vertical line starting to form above my left brow (the more active of the two) and a small indent starting to form above the center of my brows from constant furrowing. In 100% complete transparency, I considered Botox. It's like these little shits appeared almost overnight. Not even kidding!!! But after reading and reading about Botox, and also because of the Holistic-minded lifestyle I lead, I decided I'm not going that route without at least trying some alternatives first. And only when I'm just completely unhappy when I look in the mirror.

So one of the top items on my list was the Nuface Trinity. Now this little beauty's main function isn't really just wrinkles. It's more about fine lines, toning & tightening the skin and muscles on the face with something referred to as Microcurrent, or the "5 minute facial-lift". Retraining them in a way. I took this logic as possibly being able to soften my bulgy looking muscles in my forehead by "training them" to move in the opposite direction. My main issue was my forehead and just some very tiny little pucker lines starting to form on one side of my lips. Also, maybe a little lift of the brows as well.

I poured over the website, reviews, and youtube videos for months. I read as much as I could on this little gadget and all the benefits of microcurrent for the face. It seemed that the Trinity, more specifically the Ele attachment, was what I needed. However, even with my Christmas money from my parents, it just wasn't in my budget. So I hesitantly pulled the trigger on the limited edition rose gold NuFace mini. I had hopes that this would work on my issues, and even though I knew deep inside the Trinity was the better option, I hoped maybe this version would buy me some time until I could afford the big guns.

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I ended up purchasing my mini from skinstore and they shipped it really quickly! I had to charge it the day I got it, so I didn't get to use it until the next day. That morning I woke up, gave my face a quick wash and immediately sat at my vanity and slathered the nuface primer gel all over my face. I was a little nervous, but turned it on the medium setting and glided it across my lower jaw per the instructions. I felt a tiny sensation, but nothing uncomfortable. I did all the quadrants of my face as suggested. The only adjustment I did do was move the nuface from those little bulges above my brows, outward, in hopes of relaxing them a bit. And let me tell you...... it worked! The indent that I hated so much was gone and I did notice a subtle difference in my face!!

I was extremely happy with the immediate results, and got the same results the next couple times I used the device. I did get a very tiny bit of muscle fatigue, but I'm assuming this would decrease in time. Ok, so this is where it appears that this review is taking a turn for the worst. But I assure you, this is not a negative review in the slightest.

I did return the NuFace mini. I know, I knooooow =( But I promise that I didn't return it because I was unhappy with it. Actually it was the opposite! So here is my immediate reasoning. The Trinity's price tag is a little on the high side, which is why I tried to cut corners by purchasing the mini. You can buy it from some approved retailers that offer coupons, making the price a little less steep, which I would suggest. But I so desperately wanted to try this little miracle, that I bought the version that wasn't really suited for me. So lets review my main skin issues:

~ very slight horizontal lines across the forehead
~ a vertical line forming off of my left brow
~ overactive muscles due to furrowing, creating an indent
~ slightly saggy brow muscles in need of some tightening

While the mini does address these concerns, I felt the large balls aka the face trainer (insert inappropriate humor here) were slightly difficult to maneuver on my face. I have a smaller face with delicate features and felt like some areas were getting double treatment. I felt like the biggest area of my face that would benefit from the mini, would be my cheek and jaw areas, which I feel are also the least of my concerns currently.

So why did I ultimately return it even though it was working for me?

Because I need the Trinity. Period. There's no cutting corners here ladies.

And I unfortunately just don't have the funds to keep the mini until I can afford the Trinity. I think if your main concern is loss of elasticity and feeling like your cheek and jaw area is saggy, the mini is great! I'm not saying it's not an amazing little device. It truly is, and if you're someone that just needs this little powerhouse (maybe someone that has already had Botox? Then you need it. I'll get into that later next week) and don't have the budget for the Trinity, then by all means.... pull that trigger. But I need that Ele attachment, which the mini doesn't have. Why do I need the Ele? It will be so much easier to use on those problem areas and to really get under my tiny little brows. And also, I feel like I need that more advanced, 15 minute facial-lift. This really and truly was too difficult to see without actually trying the mini.

So after reading this long novel of a post, I hope you see that this is a positive review and I hope that if you've been considering purchasing either the mini or the trinity, this has helped you! Even though I'm currently mourning the loss of my little rose gold beauty, I'm really really looking forward to getting my hands on that Trinity, hopefully in the very near future! I highly recommend this device and hope it works as well for you as it did for me!!!

Ps - I've been doing all kinds of research for natural alternatives to Botox & facelifts, and am planning a series to launch hopefully next week! I'm looking at devices, treatments, skin products, and more. If you know of a product or device that you would recommend for someone that only uses safe, non-toxic ingredients, please feel free to contact me!

DISCLAIMER: This review is based on a product I personally purchased. I was not provided with a sample or financial compensation for this post. All opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

What I'm Loving Wednesday - Thirdlove Bra review

Happy Wednesday Lovelies! Today's "What I'm Loving" is actually a review, because it's something that I've been loving so much, that I just have to share with you! A few weeks ago I was introduced to a company through Sweat Pink, as I'm an Ambassador. The company I'm referring to is called Thirdlove, and they offer a gorgeous array of daily wear lingerie with a Best Fit guarantee. What makes this company different from the slew of bra companies out there? Well, to put it quite simply, their product really backs the design and guarantee claims.

Without going into embarrassing detail, after I had my son many years ago, I struggled with finding a quality, good fitting bra that was still sexy, but can be worn under an assortment of clothing daily. Victoria's Secret didn't seem to fit me well anymore, and I like inexpensive bras from Target, but while they might be kinder to your wallet, they don't really last the test of time, and can be quite finicky with fit. I found it especially difficult after I lost quite a bit of fat in a couple month period doing the BBG. A hefty dose of that fat seemed to be located in my chest region, sigh*** And while I only lost a size, I found myself dealing with a plethora of bra woes once again.

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So when Thirdlove offered to send me a box of a few of their bestsellers, I, of course, accepted! Us Fitgirls like to feel pretty too! =) Once I received my package, I was not disappointed. First, it was wrapped so pretty inside, it was like receiving a gift. I'm kind of a sucker for branding, packaging, and the like. If something arrives to me in a plastic bag shoved in a shipping box, I might not be ordering from you again, Just sayin' . It's all part of the whole image. That impressed me a lot!

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In my box, I received The Feather Light Spacer bra in Nude with a matching mesh bikini, and a Plunge Perfect Bra in Stormy Lilac with matching Mesh Thong. There was also a little satin bag included as well. Both Bras were a perfect fit! They are both really pretty, as well as practical. They look flattering under a shirt. Which is important to me because some bras can make you look like you have pointy boobs. I hate that! The Plunge Perfect is a beautiful color and does fit well, but the Feather Light bra is the best fitting bra I have ever tried and it's so comfortable! I absolutely LOVE it and definitely plan on ordering another! So with all the love aside, I'm going to be honest with you..... The prices are a little on the mid to high end, but comparable to Victoria's Secret. This kind of scared me when I first looked at the company to review. But after trying the bras, I would absolutely spend the money. They are great quality and with proper care, should last a while. Beauty & Comfort is a hard combo to find in the lingerie world.

The last and coolest thing I want to mention, is the App! Thirdlove has a an app where you can be virtually fitted. I seriously thought this would be totally bogus. I've tried the questionnaires on other bra sites and they are so WAY off base as far as recommended size, it's laughable. This app relies on a series of private photo's you take within the app. Don't worry, they aren't saved anywhere. So I tried it out fully expecting to get the normal, ridiculous recommendation I've gotten in the past. But this genius little invention was spot on! I don't know how it does it, but it was completely accurate. So if you've had similar bra shopping struggles as me, I highly recommend trying out Thirdlove! If you do decide to give them a try, make sure to enter in code TLVIPCE10 at checkout to get $10 off your purchase of $50 or more! And don't forget to stop back to let me know how much you love your new bras!!! =) 

They offer a guarantee, so what do you have to lose! Other than those uncomfortable, icky bras you currently own, of course ; ) Make sure to check them out on Twitter, FB, Pinterest, and on their gorgeous Instagram feed!!! 

DISCLAIMER: As previously mentioned, a sample box of products was provided to me for review purposes. I was not financially compensated in any way. All opinions are my own.