Monday, April 13, 2015

Why I'm doing Round 3 of BBG & What I'm adding in!

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Have you ever loved something, or someone associated with something, so you really wanted to jump into it full force, even though you know in the back of your mind it's not for you? I've been a Tone it Up plan member for a few years. I love the girls, I love their workouts, and before I committed to any specific workout format, I did them a few times a week. They were a great change from my past TAM habit! I own the first two DVD's and would regularly mix them in with my weekly workouts on the fly. I even love those girls so much, I watched and adored their show on Bravo (which I really hope comes back!). But just like the age old saying.... "just because you love something, it doesn't always mean it's good for you." I mean, I'm sure the workouts in general are very good for me! Just not necessarily good for my overall fitness plan.

So last week I had posted that I was committing to the latest TIU challenge - The Bikini Series. I was super excited and was so ready to be part of another challenge with girls all over the world. I posted a pic of my workout calendar the other day and diligently filled out each day with Karena & Katrina's 8 weeks of workouts. I was pumped! But there was this teeny little voice in the back of my mind that I was trying my best to ignore. So I just kept the momentum going. This morning I was so excited for Day 1 that I promptly posted a pic on my Instagram announcing my excitement!

Fast forward to this afternoon when I get done work. I go on my blissful 3mi LISS in the park and I come home and start my first Bikini Series workout. But have you ever done something and you just know that the actual format of it, just isn't for you? I finished the first day (adding some other bits in as well) but I just didn't feel happy like I always did while doing the BBG. Don't get me wrong, it was a great workout! My abs were burning and it was working, I just didn't have the motivation and enjoyment doing it that I have when I do any of Kayla Itsines workouts.  In all my years of working out and trying various methods, I've never found anything that works as well, as fast, and that I like as much as the BBG. Sometimes I guess you just find the right fitness format that works for you and that's what you should stay with!

So I've decided to do Round 3 of BBG! But this time I'm going to make some changes. I'll be adding in Lauren Gleisberg's (who I also love, and focuses on my 2nd fav type of workout - weights!!!) current challenge, and on the 3 days of LISS only, I'll be adding in whatever workout I feel like doing that day! Most likely some TIU, some Yoga, or maybe some Blogilates and back to my beloved TAM a couple times a week! I'm also planning on focusing more on accuracy and movement rather than trying to go really fast, and adding some more weight as well. When you know, you just know.

I'm looking forward to this last round and prepping myself to finally do BBG 2.0 this summer! Good luck to all you BBG veterans and newbies! I hope you stop by my blog again and check in! =)

DISCLAIMER: This post is not a sponsored review. All sites featured are due to my own personal experience and preference and are not affiliate sites. I have not received any compensation for this post. 

Monday, March 30, 2015

What I've been up to....

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Hi Lovelies! Oh my gosh, I seriously cannot believe it's been so long since my last post. I'm actually embarrassed that I've neglected my blog so badly!! It never ceases to amaze me how fast the months fly by. I've been making a mental note to start prioritizing and getting back into a blogging routine for a while now (obviously) and I'm really planning on doing that now! I've missed posting and most of all, I've missed all of you! So what I've been up to.....

I just recently celebrated a year at my part-time job! This was a huge milestone for me. This is the first job I've had since being a SAHM for many years. It was something I put off doing for quite some time because I was never able to find the right fit. And after a year of searching, I was lucky enough to kind of accidentally come across a listing for my job. I am so glad I took the leap and applied and even more glad that they offered it to me. I didn't just get myself back into the working world, I also gained another family. Which is something I'll be forever thankful for!

Aside from working, I really jumped headfirst back into a regimented fitness routine, as I had posted about here. It's been quite a few months and while I'm not quite where I would like to be at this point (I'm a perfectionist), I'm satisfied with my progress so far. I still have quite a way to go and this is a permanent lifestyle change for. It's something that I'm so happy I did, and absolutely love! I'll be posting a more in-depth update very soon!

And when I'm not busy working out or just working, I've been trying to make time to read, catch up on some Netflix, hello binges.... and test out some healthy recipes! I'm looking forward to posting about all of these things soon. I have lots of great things planned and I can't wait to get into my routine again!!!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Save 35% on ALL Faire Collection!

So I am MAJORLY excited to tell you about this amazing sale from Faire Collection! If you haven't been by in a while, you might not have seen that twice a month Faire Collection has been offering select items at up to 70% off through their Friday Flash Sales. But this week is a little different. Not only can you snag the entire Fall/Winter Collection at 35% off, but the code is good on sale items as well!

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I will definitely be grabbing a few favorites that I've had my eye on for a while! The items currently on my "Lust List" .....

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These gorgeous Alpaca Highland Shawls were on sale during the last Flash Sale, and it looks like they are still on sale! At 70% off they are already a steal, but with the additional 35% off they are only $28.27! I'm in love with the Creme, but I also love the olive as well!

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Tagua Bib (L) $46.80 with Discount ~ Galapagos Necklace (R) $44.59 with Discount

The last couple items on my wishlist are these two lovelies here. I have a tagua seed necklace, the Catalina necklace to be exact. And I wear it constantly. I love how it adds a pop of color to some of my neutral work attire and I get complimented on it daily. These two Tagua necklaces are perfect! The Tagua Bib Necklace is actually the first item I fell in love with from Faire Collection! I adore the Teal, but I'm also torn over the Berry as well. And the Galapagos Necklace in Pacific Blue is gorgeous with all those bright colors! I love that they both have tie necks which allows you to wear them at different lengths as well. I'll most definitely be grabbing one of these beauties!!!

Make sure to stop by the Faire Collection site today through 11:59pm EST on Monday to grab your Fair Trade pretties before the sale is over! Use code FLASHFAIRE at checkout to get your 35% discount! The best part? Not only are you grabbing Style for a Steal, but your Shopping with Purpose as well! =) Want to see the story behind Faire Collection? Check out my first review here.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Faire Collection's Flash Friday - Winter Accessories!!

I had posted a couple months back about a company I fell in love with HERE and the love affair has continued the more I learn about them!  Faire Collection is offering their special Flash Sale again tomorrow & Saturday, as well as every 1st & 3rd Friday until November for 24 hours only! What does this mean? You can snag select drool-worthy, fair trade lovelies at up to 70% off! I love the craftsmanship & quality of each piece and the love that I know goes into each one from the amazing Artisan that created it! Another positive about these pieces beyond the unique styles and the support they offer to Artisan Partners and their families, is the fact that these pieces will stand the test of time. Most are made of polished and dyed seeds that won't tarnish and go in the trash after a year. I simply ADORE all of my Faire Collection pieces!

Get early access to Faire Collection's Winter Must-Have Flash Sale right here!

Monday, October 6, 2014

What I'm Loving - Face & Body Edition

Hi Lovelies!

I hope you all had a great weekend! As I had mentioned here, I've been really busy the last couple months doing this amazing fitness program. I've been into living a healthy lifestyle for years, but I kind of fell off the wagon for a while as far as physical activity was concerned, so I really threw myself into it the end of the summer. It's been so great for me. Some days are hard, not gonna lie, but more so because I'm committed to making the time to do it and sometimes I have to fit it in where it's not the most convenient. Anyway, even though I've been living a chemical-free lifestyle for a long time, I've been trying out some new stuff since being so active takes it to a whole other level. I thought I would share some of the latest fav's for the Face & Body with you!

Obviously when you're working out regularly, that means sweat and lots of it. This can definitely take it's toll on facial skin, my own included. I've been fighting breakouts by making sure I remember to wash my face beforehand and using a clean towel to blot my face with. I shower as soon as I'm done and I use my Clarisonic Mia (a must-have for me for the last 6 years) coupled with a good cleanser.

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I've been using Sibu's Beauty Bar on and off for years and it's definitely a favorite for me. It doesn't break me out, which seems to be a major issue with most facial washes I use, and it lasts a really long time. Sibu was so kind to send me a Facial Cleanser recently and I loved this as well! This is a great, non-greasy cleanser that offers a little bit more moisture than the cleansing bar. It's a good option for this that are looking for an in-between cleanser that won't dry them out, but isn't too thick either. I also love that Sibu products aren't filled with icky ingredients that I stay away from and are gmo-free, fair trade, and cruelty-free (an absolute must for me!).

Shea Terra Organics is another favorite of mine, as I've mentioned here, here, and here in the past. I recently just placed another order with them and have been using the BlackSeed & Propolis bar for my face. My face has been a tiny bit dry, but it could be due to the recent drop in temps here too. So far it seems to be working pretty well! My face feels clean without feeling stripped!

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Another recent purchase that I just have to mention as part of a regular regimen is this amazing beauty gadget that I'm smitten over! I've been wanting this machine for so long now and I was so lucky to get enough birthday money from my parents to buy it! It's called the Riiviva Microderm and it's seriously the most wonderful thing. It's a professional grade microderm machine that you can use at home and it has diamond tips, just like they use in the spa or medspa! At first glance it seems pretty pricey, but it quickly makes up for the cost when you think about how much a microderm treatment costs in your area. And in addition to that, it also has Cellulite attachments and body attachments to help slough away stretch marks! So far I've only used it on my face, but I adore it! I had purchased the PMD a couple months back and I just didn't feel like it was working very well, so I sent it back. However, my skin has been on overdrive from working out and I really need to the treatments regularly! I'll be reporting back in a couple weeks to let you know the results! Ps - As a Riiviva Consultant, I can extend a special exclusive coupon! Use code NJ0101 at checkout to save 10% + Free Shipping!

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As I had mentioned above with the facial breakouts, this can also be an issue with the body as well when you're sweating a lot. As gross as that is, it's a reality. I like to use skin-nourishing body soaps that make me feel clean and refreshed! Shea Terra makes a liquid black soap in menthe that I've been using for years! But I never noticed that they make a bar version. I tend to be lest wasteful with bar soaps. I usually cut them into 3's and they last a really long time!! I recently purchased the Menthe Bar Soap and it's perfect for me. The black soap keeps breakouts at bay and the mint makes me feel clean and rejuvenated.

Another important aspect of living a healthy lifestyle is making sure to detox every week. I like to take an Epsom Salt bath weekly to soothe my tired muscles and get an extra dose of magnesium. I buy mine at Whole Foods, but a lot of places sell them! Just make sure they are pure and don't contain added synthetics, preservatives, or fragrance! Scrubs are also a great way to detox the body while also feeling a little indulgent - like a little spa treatment in your own shower.

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Kaeng Raeng, a Detox company I've worked with in the past, was so generous to send me a sample of their brand new Detoxfoliant! In my opinion, a good quality salt scrub is hard to find and it's necessary when you're looking to purge some of those built up toxins lurking in your skin. This scrub not only contains Dead Sea Salt, but Himalayan Pink Salt as well! There's also some lovely essential oils and nourishing ingredients in there. It smells amazing and my skin felt so soft after using it! I also highly recommend the cleanse (check out my Cleanse Diary here) as well ; )

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The last product I want to mention is something I haven't tried, but is on my current lust list. I can't believe I'm sharing this across the internet, but I've noticed lately that I have more cellulite than I did a few months ago. I really would love to be able to get regular deep-tissue massages, but that's just not in the budget for me right now. So this Babybelle body buffer is top on my list and the 1st Gen model is only $150! It helps break down metabolic-waste and ease muscle cramping. The fact that cellulite improves with this type of stimulation is just an amazing side-effect!

So that's my latest round up of fav's! I'll be back tomorrow to share my progress with Kayla Itsines BBG Program and also later in the week with some more fav's! (Hair & Fitness Style)

DISCLAIMER: All products mentioned above, with the exception of the Sibu Facial Cleanser and Kaeng Raeng Detoxfoliant (which the companies generously provided samples of), were purchased by me. My opinion is my own and I received no compensation for this post.