Thursday, March 2, 2017

My Newest Hydration Obsession...

Hi Babes! Wow.... I seriously can't believe my last post was in November!!!! That's crazy. Between the holidays and catching up after, time just flew by. I actually meant to get organized to start actively blogging again after the New Year, and then a difficult family situation came up and we've been going through such a hard time since then. All the days and weeks kind of run together, and I have just had what feels like zero time to sit down and write.

But I'm so happy I'm finally easing back into a schedule, because I have the most amazing water to tell you about. I know what you're thinking.... "Water? C'mon Christy, it's water, how amazing can it really be??" Am I right? Well this type of water was new to me and I love it! A few weeks ago I was so lucky to receive some Essence PH10 water to try out. If you're not familiar with Essence PH10, here's some info in a nutshell:

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"Essence pH10 is a premium alkaline water that contains 10% of the daily recommended allowance of calcium, magnesium, and zinc acetate. Additionally, we add organic hibiscus making this the only nutritional water on the market. This patented formula is designed to produce a sustainable pH10 that helps to restore the bodies pH balance. Essence pH10 is 100% sodium free."

I was immediately intrigued! Knowing all the benefits of an Alkaline diet, I was stoked to finally try some Alkaline water!!! I have to be honest, I didn't try it for a few days. You see, one of the key things is that Alkaline water can disrupt the stomach acid which is what your body uses to digest food. Because of this, you shouldn't drink it less than 30 minutes before and/or up to 2.5 hours after meals. I kept forgetting to try it during some windows of time. Then I ended up getting a stomach virus and was beyond sick. I was struggling to keep anything down and my stomach just felt so acidic with nothing in it. Then I remembered my Alkaline water and decided to give that a go. Within a couple hours I was able to keep some liquids down and started to feel much better. I attribute this to the water neutralizing all the nasties in my gut! That's not medical advice - just my little two cents ; )

I also recently tried it on a long, 5 miles of Sprint Intervals and it was perfect! It didn't run right through me like regular water seems to do and I felt really really hydrated. I also love that the Hibiscus (which is tasteless by the way) helps to neutralize free radicals. Win! 

This water is amazing, and after just getting back into my workout routine, I'm so excited to have it to properly hydrate. I really feel like it's going to help me step up my game!!! So after hearing all the fantastic benefits of Essence PH10, how would you like a chance to win some of your own?! Essence PH10 will be giving one lucky winner a whole case of Alkaline water to try! 

For your chance to win, simply leave a blog comment below telling me why you would love to win your own case of Essence Ph10 & what activities you think it would help you hydrate for, then go through the Gleam widget and enter your info! This MUST be done or I will not be able to include you in the drawing- there's also opportunity for extra entries! And don't forget to check them out on their website, twitter, facebook, and Instagram  - sorry, this giveaway is available to US residents only


Essence PH10 Giveaway








DISCLAIMER: While a product sample was provided to me for my honest review, I was not financially compensated in any way. All opinions are honest and are my own.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

My thoughts on the FasciaBlaster - Part 2

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Quite a while ago I had written a post about my experience with the FasciaBlaster. With every intention of writing a follow-up post, time obviously got away from me, and I never ended up doing so. But after many emails peppered with questions, and requests to post my latest thoughts.... here I am. I can't believe it's been well over a year since I started blasting, but it has! And while I don't have the earth shattering results that some others have, that's due to my own lack of effort to blast regularly. I currently only use my FasciaBlaster about once per week, because it is a little time consuming and labor-intensive. But it does work!!! Here are my thoughts broken down.....

Usage & Tips...

- You absolutely WILL bruise and it most likely will be uncomfortable. Go on Ashley Black's YouTube and watch as many videos and tutorials as possible to prep yourself on methods, reasoning, and pain/bruising expectation. I will say that I still bruise occasionally now, but it definitely does improve and I'm sure if I used the FB as much as I would like, I wouldn't bruise at all. 

- The pain also gets better. When you have all that gravely fascia under the skin, it doesn't feel so nice to break it up. Just go easy per Ashely's recommendations and be patient. I won't say that it feels good at this point, though some areas do and some areas are still sensitive (helloooo calves!) - but the pain will decrease over time as well. 

- Make time to use the FB and schedule it in. I think if I did this, I would use it more regularly and have more pronounced results. I personally prefer to use it in the shower with Body Wash. It gives a better slip. But it's like an upper body workout and being that I would typically blast after a workout session, it can be really tiring. I've started using a towel and sitting on my floor with some oil and though I feel like this isn't as good of a Blast, I do feel like it's a bit easier to work in sections and I can take my time.



What I've used it with...


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- I've used a body oil by Shea Moisture. They make several and you can pick it up at Target. But I ultimately switched because the smell was a bit too strong for me.



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- I love to use Acure Organics Energizing body wash in the shower. It has some amazing ingredients for your skin, it's not filled with hormone-disrupting chemicals, and it works really well! Plus it smells a little like dessert!! And now they make a large bottle - LOVE!



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- Now when I blast outside of the shower, I love Desert Essence Organic Jojoba & Coffee Oil. This stuff is AMAZING! It works so well for blasting, it has some great ingredients, and the scent is soooo good. Plus, I was hoping that maybe the coffee would provide some tightening effects. I highly recommend this one. It's not a giant bottle, but you can pick it up online, often with a discount.


My Final Thoughts...

So you're probably wondering if I feel that the FasciaBlaster is worth $89? The short answer -  Yes... ABSOLUTELY. I think it's worth every penny and then some. It has tightened up my skin, improved some dimply areas, and has helped the fat pockets above my knees that I loathe. It also helps with recovery after my strenuous workouts (I train 6 days per week). I'm not nearly as sore when I use it after a tough leg day. Oh, and my Achilles Tendonitis that I developed last year? Thanks to the FB & a new pair of Brooks Ghost 8's, GONE! 

I receive no compensation for this post or any orders placed through a single link on this site. I would only ever recommend a product that I truly believe in. I've seen the results on myself, and also on many photo's shared on Ashley's Facebook group. It's truly amazing how this invention of hers works and it has helped so many people - myself included. 

ps - I may have heard through the grapevine that there's a super Black Friday sale coming up that includes a FaceBlaster with purchase of a glossy black FasciaBlaster (until supplies last)! Jump on it!!! I haven't been lucky enough to try to the FaceBlaster, but let me tell you.... I've seen photo's shared directly from the individuals using it, and also videos and the results are phenomenal!

Hopefully I'll feel brave enough to share some before & after photo's in the future! Until then, keep the questions, comments, and emails coming! Happy Blasting!!!


DISCLAIMER: I was not compensated for this post in any way. All links provided are not affiliate links. All opinions are my own and I was not financially influenced.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Birthday Wishlist/Fall Must-Haves ...

Happy Tuesday, Babes! I hope you all enjoyed the long weekend! My boy is starting 7th grade today and it's bittersweet. It's really a wonderful thing to watch your "baby" grow up into a young adult. They have their own beliefs, start to show independence (which can be a total PIA sometimes!), and the values that you raised them with really start to show. I just can't believe how quickly the time flies by. If you're reading this after you just dropped your little's off for the day, enjoy it and give them a big hug when they get home. Relish that time, because they'll be in Middle School before you know it! =)

Another thing that the end of the long weekend and start of school signifies is Fall. Ahhhhh, Fall, sweet Fall. My favorite time of year. The time for sweaters, boots, crunchy leaves, and too many PSL's to count! Yes, I know I'm supposed to be a "health nut", but we all have our vices right?! And along with Fall comes my birthday. The day I love to hate. The reminder that my time is flying by as well, and the reality of aging sets in. I'd be lying if I said that isn't a struggle at times. No one likes to look old - especially women! But my commitment to living a Healthy Lifestyle truly helps me with this hurdle. And it makes me better able to appreciate that I get another year on this amazing earth, rather than focusing on vanity.

I've obviously already started bookmarking some of my favorite Fall Must-Haves a few weeks ago. But it really kicks into high gear around this time. When I have my Birthday on my mind and it's the one day I allow myself to be a little bit spoiled. So..... I had to put together a list for you of some of my favorite finds. All the items I already have or hope to be scooping up for the season very very soon. Ahem.... Husband, are you reading this?! ; )

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My first grouping contains this amazing High/Low Sweater I found on Super Sale at Nordstrom! I love a really loose fitting, slouchy sweater that isn't too thick. I actually picked this one up in both grey and the oatmeal color. I haven't gotten them yet, but I'm crossing my fingers that they're flattering!

I also had to include a few pieces from Madewell that I already own and love. I think they're the perfect everyday pieces for your collection, and at a great price point as well. These bar earrings are edgy, but simple at the same time. I love to add mine with a tiny earring in my second hole, or to just wear them alone. And these little gemline studs are adorable and so chic. They're like a mini ear crawler. Just enough for someone to notice that they're a little different, but without the commitment of a larger, edgier earring. And the ensign necklace, one of my most loved pieces of jewelry that I own. I got this necklace last year and I've worn it 80% of the time since. I actually just grabbed a back up during this past weekends sale, since I don't know what I would do if I ever lost it!

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Here are a few casual tops that I'm hoping to add to my fall wardrobe. I like to keep it simple, but I like to have a little something going on with what I wear. Some little detail that makes it a little different than a plain top. Like this Thermal shirt in a camo print. I absolutely love Camo. Like leopard, it's the perfect neutral. And I can't wait to try out one of this season's fav trends, the cold shoulder top. Aerie actually has them for only $29! Even better if you grab during a sale. And this super cozy cardi, also from Aerie,  is top on my list.


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And I saved the best for last. These are 3 items that I'm so in love with. I bought a parka from American Eagle a few years ago and I loved it so much, it's starting to get a little ratty. It's definitely time for a replacement. This one from Abercrombie fits the bill and is actually even a bit nicer, and heavier than my own. Abercrombie also has this Butterfly sweater, and being that I'm a sucker for Intarsia, I fell in lust with it immediately. It would be the perfect pop of color to my work wardrobe! And my most favorite item, something I've been coveting for a while now..... This bag from Duluth Trading is my most wanted Fall item. A couple years ago I reviewed another bag from Duluth (that I still wear daily by the way), and it's holding up so well. I always get compliments on it. And while I'm not the biggest fan of wearing a lot of leather, this is a lifetime leather bag. Which means it will get better with age! And if you're like me, if you find something you love, you'll wear it to death - which means less to buy, and less waste. I'm absolutely head over heels for this color. It's perfection!!!

So that wraps up my latest round up of fav's. I hope to be updating you in a couple weeks with possible reviews of a couple of these products!





DISCLAIMER: while this is not a sponsored post, this post does contain some affiliate links. No product is influenced by the links, they are featured because of my own personal preference. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Hey Babes! I haven't done one of these posts in a while and since there's so many products that I've been buying and trying, I thought it was time to do a new round up of my current fav's. So here we go.....


At the very top of my list is a product I've been dying to try! I actually just received it the other day, but it's already a favorite. The product is Eye+ by SkinOwl. Why do I love this product? Well where do I start?! Lucky enough, I don't have a ton of wrinkles around my eyes just yet. There's some thin skin, a bit of crepe skin going on, and some very fine feathery lines in my undereye. I did have dark circles, but a recent discovery is that this was due to a minor food allergy. A quick little tidbit of info for you.... If you have itching in the corner of your inner eyes, and/or a blue or purple tinge under your eyes (also known as allergic shiners), chances are you're consuming something causing you major inflammation. In my case, peanuts. Do I have a peanut allergy? Not that I'm aware of. But I definitely have some kind of issue with them. After eliminating them from my diet, the shiners disappeared. So on to why I love this product. It's cooling and so soothing to your eyes. It just feels so nice going on. Like a little mini spa treatment. And it depuffs/tightens almost immediately. My skin is already starting to look so much better, after just a few days of use. I did notice that I don't like the way my concealer sits on top of it, due to the tightening effect. But this is easily solved by applying the Eye+ first, and then using my daily daytime moisturizer a few minutes later! I'm absolutely dying to try Neck+. It's top on my Must-Try list!!!

Which brings me to my next find....



Andalou Naturals is one of my favorite green beauty brands. Not only are the ingredients really good, but it's one of the few lines that has a few products that my skin can tolerate. But it's priced really well! I've been using this Acai + White Tea Oil-Free Moisturizer with no breakouts at all, for a couple months now. It works great as a primer and doesn't make my skin exceptionally oily throughout the day like most creams tend to do! It's also full of antioxidants like acai, white tea, and other fruit extracts, which help to fight free radical damage throughout the day. It doesn't do much for me as far as the hairline wrinkles across my forehead. You would need something a little stronger for that. But as far as keeping my skin hydrated, protected, and prepped for makeup - it fits the bill perfectly.


Another Andalou product that I've been using for a while and love, is the Purple Carrot + C Luminous night cream. This cream is amazing during the winter months. It is so nourishing, brightening, and doesn't break me out at all. Which is not easy to find, let me tell you! There was a period of time that my skin got so bad because every cream I tried either gave me dermatitis, or caused major acne and clogged pores. For a while I wasn't using anything, because nothing would work. I tried this in a discovery kit and lucky for me, it was a winner! It works great alone in the winter months, applied before I go to bed. And during the summer I like to add a bit of Shea Terra Organics Cape Aloe to lighten it up a little. Oh, and it smells really good too! Bonus!!



Next up are the new Shampoo & Conditioner I've been using. Acure Organics came out with a Straightening line fairly recently. I finally found it on Vitacost and I love it! Acure's hair products tend to dry my finicky hair a bit, so these are not everyday products for me. However, when I feel like my hair needs a change or I'm getting some build up, it works fantastic. Oh and they smell delicious. Like a coconutty, gourmand type scent. I'm currently using them every few days, alternating with my other fav's - Shea Moistures Manuka Shampoo and Kids Mango + Carrot Conditioner. This seems to keep my naturally curly to straight hair moisturized and clean feeling.


The last product on my list is something I purchased in the beginning of the summer, and have since repurchased! If you're a green beauty user, I'm sure you're no stranger to Schmidt's. I've been using natural deodorant for years and let me tell you.... This is one of the best that I've tried. It works really well and it smells really good. And just a couple months ago, they created a stick form! I use the Bergamot + Lime scent and love it. And I saw that a new scent was released - Rose + Vanilla. I would love to hear from someone that's tried this! I'm not a huge fan of florals, but this sounds like it would smell nice!

Ps - Here's a major tip for you. All of the items listed here (with the exception of the Acure Straightening products), as well as many items I've featured in the past, are purchased from Pharmaca! They offer 6% cashback through ebates, lots of promo codes almost regularly, and a low free shipping minimum. I buy a lot of green beauty products, personal care, and supplements through them monthly. They're awesome and have exceptional customer service as well! I'm not an affiliate, I've just been using them for so long, that I really love the sales, pricing, and selection =)

So that's my latest roundup of items. I would love to hear some of your current fav's!!! I'm always adding to my list!





DISCLAIMER: All items featured above were purchased by me. None are samples and I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are my own and have not been influenced in any way.

Friday, July 29, 2016

My Thoughts on Protein Powders - A Review

Hi Loves! Happy Friday!!! The weekend is almost here! I've been really enjoying my weekends this summer and have been devoting a lot of my time to fitness, spending quality time with my family, and relaxing. I'm not one for hot weather, so that's been my agenda lately. So I posted recently about a protein powder I've been using and I wanted to post a follow-up. I'm typically not a huge fan of protein powders, as I usually have some issues digesting them. But they are super convenient and when you aren't great at getting protein in (heeeeyyy), they can make an amazing snack option. Since my last post I've been using Bob's Red Mill Protein Boosters almost every day and I really like them! As I had also mentioned in my Hormone post a couple weeks ago, I was going to try carb cycling. Well I did try it and I started that day!!! I just decided to take the plunge and jump right in, and I'm so glad I did. What does this protein powder have to do with my carb cycling? I'm not sure it would be working for me without them. Read on....

I'm sure you're wondering.... "Well is it working so far? Did you lose any weight?!" And the answer is yes. Carb Cycling has absolutely been working for me. I'm still tweaking and playing around with the rotation of days, as well as percentage of macros on said days - but I'm happy to say that I've lost 6lbs since my post almost 3 weeks ago. Which might not seem like a lot to most people, but for someone like me that's been struggling major hormonal issues, and not been able to drop so much as a pound in several months, it's a pretty big deal.

And like I said before, this way of eating would be pretty difficult without a protein powder. I currently get my shake ready in the morning and bring it in a shaker bottle to work. It's my mid-morning snack and I would really struggle without it! It's especially perfect for my higher carb days. And it's especially delicious with a little PB Fit added in for an extra shot of protein & flavor =)



So what have I been doing with it? I have no crazy complicated recipes. Some of my favorite ways to use it are in overnight oats, chia protein pudding, adding fruit like cherries, kiwi, peaches etc, and adjusting the thickness to make my ultimate favorite - protein pudding! I just get creative playing around with flavor combo's - vanilla pb&j anyone?

One thing to keep in mind, this is a slightly higher carb protein powder. It's not bad in the sense that if you drink it on it's own (it's one of the few I've tried that actually tastes great with only filtered water), but that if you add fruit in the mix, it will most certainly make that carb & sugar amount increase.But the amounts of macros in this powder does make it a good option for a pretty balanced meal replacement - just on it's own! Chocolate is still my favorite out of all of them, with Vanilla being a close second.

I did try baking with the protein, but I find that it's difficult to completely replace a flour with the protein, so I just add some to it until I get the batter texture I prefer. I'm so thankful to Bob's Red Mill for sending me that amazing package and allowing me to try it. I'll most definitely continue to purchase my favorite chocolate flavor so that I can keep making my protein pudding post workout snacks =)

Ps - stop by my Instagram - I'm doing a Flash Giveaway where you can win 1 bag of protein. But hurry, there's just a few hours left!!! ps - snag a coupon here!

Enjoy your weekend, babes!!!!