The Trend Is Turning: The “Clean Eating” Myths That Have Been Researched

Popular topic today: CLEAN EATING!! Nutrition is such a vital aspect of our well-being, so it’s no surprise that it has become such a focus in recent years. The internet has given us all the power to have more control of the food we eat and how it’s sourced than ever before. No longer do we just have to accept what’s on the back of a packet as being good for us – we can go and check, verify, and even test the claims that people make. But just like most popular subjects on the internet, there is SO MUCH information and it can be so easy to have no clue what is healthy and what is not.  

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Being healthy has always been important but it seems to be at a new level these days. How to be my healthiest self, constantly hearing of new healthy things and needing to try it, “fueling” our bodies, pinning hundreds of healthy recipes that we someday might try, this popular interest in healthy eating developed the over used term, “clean eating”. When this term was first thrown around it was all you would see on the popular blogs, all about living out a life with “clean eating”. It dominated the blogosphere which meant in time, it spilled into traditional media as well. Anyone who cared about their nutrition wanted to ensure that they were doing it in a “clean” way; they wanted to know what foods to shun, and what foods they should introduce into their diets. Honestly, as annoying as the phrase “clean eating” can be, because it is overused so much, what a great annoying phrase it is! Just like everything new, sparkly, and exciting, it was a bit over the top but really, what is wrong with people wanting to nourish their bodies with clean food and having a genuine interest in what they are putting into their bodies? The negative perceptions on clean eating in my opinion is not on actually eating clean, its on the annoying term CLEAN EATING. 

The tide is turning. There has been a backlash against clean eating for awhile now, to the point that some of its most famous proponents refuse to use the term. The reasons for concern are primarily psychological rather than in terms of nutrition (though there are dangers in this sphere, also). The idea that some food is inherently bad – i.e. dirty – is not a healthy way to think about food and not how we want our kiddos thinking of it either. Are we gross or bad for eating a cupcake? NO! Eat the darn cupcake, just do not eat 10 of them a day 🙂 

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Does “Clean Eating” work, or is it bad for you?

It’s not bad for you, but it can be if you take it too far. The idea of everything in moderation is one that applies strictly to clean eating, though people tend to forget that. It is not an all or nothing concept. Many people follow a “clean eating” lifestyle but remember that everyone is human and even those perfect eaters still indulge, just in moderation. 

When someone switches to a “clean” diet, they tend to have to throw out a lot of processed, high-sugar, bad-fat type food. Of course they feel better and lose weight when they do that! Anyone who reduces their intake of highly calorific food and replaces it with something more nutritious is going to feel the better. The benefits of removing processed food from your diet is undeniable. 

Why Change If It’s Not Broken?

This is a natural thing to wonder if you have been adhering to the “clean eating” rules for awhile now. The main problem with diving in 100% with the clean eating process is that it’s expensive; especially when you factor in all those “superfoods” we’re meant to want to eat or drink. It’s also time-consuming, which can lead to occasional fall-off-the-wagon moments when you’re rushed and it’s inconvenient to prepare a meal from scratch. This cycle isn’t eating in moderation which – remember – is the key.

What’s Wrong With Superfoods?

The problem with superfoods (as well as supplements and dietary additions) is that they don’t tend to be that well tested. Without scientific evidence, you can spend a lot of money for a benefit you’re never going to get.

Of course, some superfood, supplements, and dietary additions are indeed everything that they claim to be. The nutritional content of these foods can be checked and verified, or can be a solution to a genuine problem. So not all of these things are bad – in fact, some of them satisfy a genuine need, and shouldn’t be eliminated from your diet.

So Which Are Okay?

Again, it doesn’t have to be an all in, 100%, only taking in clean foods and eliminating everything else. This is not realistic and leads to frustration. If you want to supplement a healthy diet, then there are some foods and additions that can genuinely benefit your diet.

  • We know that chia seeds are high in protein, so they’re a fantastic source if you need a natural energy boost. 
  • Dietary additions such as sulfur crystals and magnesium flakes are also satisfying a need; the issues that industrial farming has brought to the nutrient quantity of our fruit and vegetables. This is a known fact, so using these items to try and replace what has been lost over the years is a great idea. I will say I have not personally tried this one but I had to share the research as it is very interesting. 
  • There’s a pretty great chart here which brings together all of the scientific evidence for the various superfoods. Garlic, olive oil, and omega 3 supplements all score well; superfood staples such as acai berries or alfalfa, meanwhile, are struggling. What?!? I thought acai bowls were an awesome thing, that’s what pinterest and instagram post have shown 😉 

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What Should Proper Nutrition Look Like, Then?

So how in the world do we know what is right and what is wrong? The opinions and research are overwhelming and often over the top. If adhering to the core principles of the “clean eating” movement isn’t the best idea and you don’t need to spend a fortune on unnecessary superfoods and supplements… what do you do?

The truth is that nutrition is a complicated science, which means there is no “one diet fits all” available. Instead, you have to listen to your body, especially if you’re trying to solve a health condition. You could try an elimination diet , which can help you identify the foods that you have an issue with. I was having stomach issues years ago and I used the elimination diet to find out that I have a sensitivity to lactose. 

If you just want to eat well for general health, then many of the principles of “clean eating” are good to follow – there’s just no need to call it clean eating, that might just annoy someone 😉 for the love!  Instead, think of it as proper nutrition and keep it simple! 

  • Plenty of vegetables
  • Not so many fruits, as fruits are notoriously high in sugar.
  • Opt for low-fructose fruits such as blackberries and blueberries if you do want to eat fruit.
  • Grains and nuts should be incorporated into your diet.
  • Avoid highly processed food on a regular basis – it’s fine for an occasional treat, but not for a nightly staple.

And there you have it. Clean eating has, to an extent, been busted. The superfoods that cruised on the back of the movement have definitely – with a few exceptions that satisfy other “need” criteria – been busted. You don’t need to spend a fortune on nutrition to feel and look good; you just have to practice moderation, and never let yourself be convinced that anything is inherently “dirty”. Sometimes we need to step back and just do what works best for YOU and ignore all the newest trends. Do your best, stay realistic, indulge in moderation, and don’t be too hard on yourself! 

Thanks for stopping by today! I hope you have a great first day of summer 🙂

On The GO Essentials (Starbucks Protein Box Review)

Helloooo! June continues to be a tad bit on the CRAYYYZAYYY side. I’m on the go go go but that is something I have been expecting so thankfully I’m trying my best to stay positive, rested, and ready! Some fresh flowers from my mother-in-law’s gorgeous backyard never hurt to keep the spirits up either

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Majority of the time, being the complete type A that I am, I have lunches packed the night before, dinner planned, and workouts scheduled. Lately I have fallen off that bus a little bit and catch myself skipping meals or not eating the best and blaming it on being so busy. No excuse! I’m not even a mom yet, I cannot be using the busy excuse already 😉

I have found if I leave the house with these essentials every morning, my day goes pretty smoothly!

  • water bottle
  • packed healthy lunch
  • plenty of healthy snacks
  • protein shake (shameless protein selfie below 😉 I did a FB challenge and posted this to the group one day when we had to talk about our intake for the day)
  • workout clothes
  • planner

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Preparation is key to successful on the go days for me. I did leave the house last week and realized I had to go to class directly after work. I packed a great lunch, but forgot to bring food for before class. YIKES! Here is where it would be so easy to swing through a gas station and grab some junk… BUT thankfully my bestie Starbucks came to the rescue! Introducing: My review on Starbucks Protein Box.

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For less than $5 I was able to quickly grab this awesome little protein box. It was really good! The grapes and apple slices were super fresh, the hard boiled egg was… well a hard boiled egg, and the little wheat roll was tasty with the packet of honey they give you. I skipped the cheese, but would have loved to have it if my stomach welcomed dairy. I would recommend this quick fix for when you are in a rush and still want to eat “clean”

Join in!! How do you prepare for a healthy day when you know you will be on the go all day?? I would love some ideas!

Jillian Michaels Detox Water Review!

Well Happy Thursday to you all! I hope you’re having an awesome week and are as excited for the weekend as I am. Today I’m discussing and giving a review on a natural detox cleanse I did a few weeks back. Don’t cringe too much you non cleanse believers, this one is pretty natural and doesn’t cut anything out of your diet! <—- We will jump back into that, first, how about some random camera roll Goodness going on as of late….
April has been a great month so far! Lots of projects taking place in the Elioff household and I can’t wait to share some of them with you all, relaxation when we get the chance, taking advantage of this beautiful weather and grilling, lots of workouts (next week is my LAST week of the BBG and her workouts are still leaving me on the floor), clean eats, and I’m currently putting two different 12 week workout plans together for girlfriends, and although it takes a ridiculous amount of time (I’m a perfectionist) I LOVE it! Lastly, Nick and I booked a trip for our 1 year anniversary and cannot wait. Having something like that to look forward to is so much fun. We will be soaking up this amazing view for a week!!
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Alright! I’m sorry for the picture overload, I feel like it’s been forever since I have blogged. Let’s dig into the real topic of today’s post… Detox Cleansing! What is your take on cleanses? I have heard and read both extreme opinions. I have MY personal opinion, which of course doesn’t make it right or wrong. I’m not a fan of cleanses where you do not eat. That has always been a crazy concept for me. I’m a believer if you are hungry you eat, in moderation. I will be the first to admit I am not experienced in the “cleansing” world but when I came across Jillian Michaels Detox Water Cleanse, I was interested.

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I had been feeling really concentrating on my water intake and trying to be better at staying hydrated. With this, I found myself feeling bloated and heavy. After some research, I found that the main purpose of Jillian’s natural cleanse is to flush out any extra water weight your body is holding onto and will help you feel less bloated, yes please! It sounded easy enough and would help me continue to focus on my water intake so I thought, what the heck, why not! I wasn’t aiming to drop any pounds or inches with this cleanse, I just wanted to FEEL better and less bloated. SUCCESS! This detox takes the place of your daily water intake. It’s just 60 ounces a day, for 7 days, of the below listed ingredients! I split each day into three separate water bottles, because that’s what worked best for me (many people put all 60 ounces in one container for the day) I drank one first thing in the morning before I put anything else in my body, one mid afternoon, and one in the evening.

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I stuck with the cleanse 100% for 7 days. I eat pretty healthy as it is, but the only thing I changed BY CHOICE throughout this seven days was I did not eat any sweets, and limited my coffee intake to 4 cups in 7 days. After 7 days, I felt refreshed and not bloated at ALL. I would definitely recommend this natural detox. Although I can’t say if I lost weight or inches (because I did not measure) I could FEEL a big difference and that’s enough for me 🙂

Ingredients:

60 oz of distilled water (if you’re still afraid to use distilled water, spring water will be fine)
1 Tbsp cranberry juice with as little of sugar as possible. I found this Diet Cranberry has less natural sugar than the organic Cranberry juice.
2 Tbsp lemon juice
Directions:
1. Brew the tea as listed on the box and let it cool to room temperature
2. Mix all ingredients together and add the tea (once cooled)
3. Drink the entire mixture each day for up to 7 days (you will make a new batch each day)
I actually liked the taste of this water but it is bitter! Took me a day to get used to, but then I wanted more of it after day 7!
Note – you can consume this drink every 12 to 16 weeks.
I have a girlfriend who is doing this detox right now and I can’t wait to hear what she thinks 🙂
What do you think of the cleanse trend? Is a more natural cleanse like this more realistic for you… or do you enjoy the no eating cleanses? Or is detoxing just not your thing?…. lets discuss 🙂

 

Moderation! PB2 Flourless Chocolate Brownies

Good Evening Beauties! We are sitting down for what seems like the first time this weekend. We have had a couple days full of yard work, landscaping, and family <3 I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. Lets jump right into tonight’s topic… “CLEAN EATING” & MODERATION

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I struggle to even use the words “clean eating” on My Goodness. I know the eye rolls and thoughts that can come along with the phrase. So what does it mean? What classifies you as a clean eater….opposed to what… a dirty eater 😉 In MY non professional opinion, clean eating is different for everyone. I know some people think if you say you eat clean, that you would NEVER pick up a french fry or eat chocolate. If that is you, more power to you, that is great! Although I do make healthy choices majority of the time with what I put into my body, I still eat french fries and sweets sometimes! For me, it’s all about moderation. No I do not eat fried food barely at all, and sweets isn’t a daily routine, but I think you can still be a clean eater and indulge in a vanilla mocha coffee, or hamburger sometimes.

The way I see it is, I work my booty off in the gym, and a cookie will not kill me! I will say a lot of processed food doesn’t agree well with me and I simply feel better when I make smart choices, but I don’t beat myself up when I indulge either. Lately I have had a sweet tooth, which is really unlike me. If I crave anything it’s usually FOOD like pizza, a big burger, a gigantic bowl of cereal, not sweets. Anywho…instead of buying candy bars and ice cream and feeling crappy afterwards, I took my wondering eye to Pinterest. I introduce, PB2 FLOURLESS CHOCOLATE BROWNIES!! What?! Amazing! I found these via Pinterest on Skinnytaste.com A friend at work introduced me to PB2 and to say that I’m obsessed is probably an understatement. PB2 is a powdered peanut butter, made by squeezing natural oils out of the peanut and then dehydrating what’s left, yielding a powder in which 90% of the fat is removed from the peanut. These brownies were loved by myself and my husband. They will be made again shortly 🙂 Indulging in moderation is key, and if you can indulge in a healthier way, such as these brownies… why not?! Enjoy!

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Ingredients:

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1 large egg
1 large egg white
1 cup PB2
1/2 cup dark cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 cup plus 1 tbsp water
1/2 cup raw honey
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup chocolate chips

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Directions:

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Spray a nonstick 9 x 9 inch baking pan with cooking spray.

Beat the egg and egg white in a small bowl with a whisk.

In a large bowl combine the PB2, dark cocoa powder, salt, baking soda and mix well with a spatula. Add the egg and egg whites and stir. Add water, honey, vanilla and stir with a spatula until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Pour the mixture into the prepared baking pan and bake about 30 minutes. Set aside to cool, then cut into 12 bars cutting 3 rows x 4 rows.

20 Minute Avocado Pasta Trial

Hi Friends! I wanted to share a new pasta dish I tried last week for a quick, easy, and healthy dinner. It was rainy and cold and Nick and I were both craving warm comfort food. PASTA obviously was the first thought to pop in my mind. Alfredo, was Nick’s first thought. Ugh Alfredo… LOVE it! But my dairy free stomach does not. BING, I remembered I found what looked to be a delicious avocado pasta recipe on Pinterest!

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I tweaked the recipe a bit to fit our likes and it was a hit! There are a few things I would change for next time… but it was so easy, and much more health conscious compared to alfredo pasta. Okay now that you have the back story… that was pointless to share 😉 lets jump into the Goodness!

“The easiest, most unbelievably creamy avocado pasta that everyone will love. And it’ll be on your dinner table in just 20 min!” I have left the original recipe I found visible, but added in my changes.

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INGREDIENTS

12 ounces spaghetti whole wheat noodles

2 ripe avocados, halved, seeded and peeled

1/2 cup fresh basil leaves

2 cloves garlic minced garlic we had in the fridge 😉

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1/3 cup olive oil

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved, and 1/2 cup of chopped sweet peppers

1/2 bag of steamed peas bag of steamed peas and I also steamed some spinach leaves for about 1 minute to add in!

1/2 cup canned corn kernels, drained and rinsed bag of steamed peas

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INSTRUCTIONS

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain well.
To make the avocado sauce, combine avocados, basil, garlic and lemon juice in the bowl of a food processor I mixed everything with a whisk because we don’t have a food processor; season with salt and pepper, to taste. With the motor running The motor of my hand was running ;), add olive oil in a slow stream until emulsified; set aside.
In a large bowl, combine pasta, avocado sauce, cherry tomatoes, peas, spinach, and peppers.
Serve immediately.

Nick and I really liked this pasta and had a few reviews for next time.

Adding grilled chicken to this would be really great! We want to try adding asparagus instead of peas next time, and it is such a fresh tasting pasta, that it is really good cold, kind of as a pasta salad as well. Enjoy!

Two New Quick & At Home HIIT Workouts!

It’s SUNDAY!! Although I love this day, I can’t say I love that I’m currently sitting in front of my sliding glass door watching the snow fall. YES, I said snow! I went to wearing flats on Friday to now it’s looking like I will be shoveling the driveway tomorrow morning. FOR THE LOVE! Even Guinness is confused with what the heck is going on outside!

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This weekend was full of friends, family, workouts, devotions, and prepping for the week ahead. Enjoy two new HIIT workouts that I did this weekend. Anything that you can do quickly at home, and feel the burn, is worth it to me!

FULL BODY ANYWHERE HIIT

AT HOME CORE BLAST

I quick ran to the store today for the quick must have’s for the week. YES, I did make energy bites again for this week… I’m just not sick of them yet 🙂

SUNDAY PREP

What are your health goals for the week ahead and how will you stay on track with them? 

My goals: Drink 80 oz of water each day, incorporate yoga at least once this week, and take the time to stretch after my workouts!

How I will stay on track: I’m making myself drink 20 oz of water before any coffee in the morning, I will chug right through that 20 oz!! I also have my workouts planned out for the week, and as of now, yoga is on that plan. When I workout over my lunch hour, I’m going to be sure I save at least 5 minutes at the end of each workout, to stretch.

Until next time! Wake up tomorrow and kick Mondays bootayyy!!

Friday Weekly Goodness

It’s FRIDAY and the sun is shining here in beautiful Minnesota! It’s 61 degrees here and the snow is pretty much all melted. This kind of weather in MN, in March of COURSE means the streets are flooded with people walking and running, people are wearing shorts and sandals, you will see 90% of people driving with their sunroofs open, and the whole “Minnesota Nice” is taken to a new level… everyone is happy 🙂

Below is a camera roll version of my favorite GOODNESS from this week. From puppies, to babies, workouts, to food, and lets not forget the new Almond dairy free creamer I came across?! YES please! Let’s add in my new favorite glass water bottle from a sweet girlfriend, fresh grapefruit from Arizona, and a much needed reminder and we are good! Have a great weekend all!! I hope some of my Goodness can put a smile on your face!

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Until next time <3

PREPARATION! Sunday Food Prep

Wacky Wednesday over here! I hope you are all having a great week so far! On crazy mornings like today, I’m very thankful for the time I take on Sunday’s to food prep for the week ahead. For me, consistent healthy eating is dependent on preparation. We don’t even have children yet and our weeks fill up so quickly, and it’s when we are rushed and not prepared that we make poor decisions with our food intake so I do my best to prepare us for success 😉 being completely honest though, we probably swing by Subway once every two weeks and just may sneak into Chipotle every once in awhile.

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Nick and I have made a habit out of grocery shopping every Sunday to stalk up on produce and weekly essentials. There are a few Sunday preparations that are staples for me, but I also love new ideas and trying new things for the week ahead so please share any ideas you may have 🙂 this last Sunday looked a little like this…

Energy Bites: I have been trying to make these on Sunday’s to have for the week. They are SO simple to grab on the go and really fix a sweet tooth! For breakfast or a snack, we love these!

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Egg White Muffins: This was a new one for me and was a success! These babies are ALL over Pinterest and I thought I would give them a try. These are crazy simple, healthy and taste so good.

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Spray muffin pan
  • Add in your favorite veggies to fill half of each muffin circle
  • Poor liquid egg white over your veggies
  • Bake for 30 minutes
  • Let fully cool and store in airtight container in the fridge throughout your week. Grab one and throw it in the microwave for 40 seconds and BOOM you have a healthy and delicious breakfast… or for Nick, you have a healthy breakfast, mid afternoon snack, and “bedtime snack” 😉

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Salads: I am QUEEN of buying way too much spinach and wasting a lot of it because it doesn’t stay fresh super long. To attempt to solve this issue, I have been prepping salads for Nick and I to have for lunch. They don’t stay super fresh so I only do 4 at a time to get us through Monday and Tuesday and then make more on Tuesday’s.

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Grilled Chicken:  Taking full advantage of this amazing weather, Nick is grilling chicken breast on Sundays, cutting it up, and marinating the chicken in three different flavors for the week. This makes it easy for us to throw together a wrap, salad, chicken taco’s, or a sandwich during the week for lunches or dinner.

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Other: Other little things such as Sunday grocery trips, packing individual baggies with fruits, veggies, wheat things, and pretzels, writing out each night’s dinner, packing individual containers of hummus and salad dressings, and cutting up lemons to put in my water bottle each morning to attempt to drink more water!

Each and every week is a little different and don’t be mistaken, there are weeks where my “preparation” isn’t all that great but I do believe taking the time to prep for our week results in a more healthier, money saving, fulfilled, and happier version of myself! I can’t image how Sunday prep will be once children are in the picture, kudos to you mommas! Plan for success 🙂

What are your favorite ways to prep for your week ahead? I would love some new ideas!! I’m really exited about some posts I have planned for the near future!! Prepare for HIIT workout central and new experiments in the kitchen!

Until next time…

Home version of Chipotle!

Happy Valentine’s Day I mean Happy Saturday!! <3

I won’t bore you just YET with our Valentine’s Day details. Nothing too exciting 😉 instead… let’s talk about bringing your favorite eating out meals, into the house!

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Nick and I have made a major effort to not eat out as much this year and boy oh boy!! It isn’t only helping our wallet, it’s helping our stomach’s as well. I’m the first to admit I crack under food presure and do not always make the best decisions when we eat out.  But let’s stay realistic… we have those eating out meals that we just NEED sometimes. One of ours is Chipotle! We are suckers for a huge burrito bowl. We attempted our own “healthier” version at home and Chipotle has nothing on us 😉

A ridiculously full bowl including a huge pile brown rice, grilled chicken, fresh peppers and onions, homemade salsa, and avocado.  I couldn’t add cheese or sour cream to mine, but Nick didn’t either as being home the temptation isn’t screaming at you! It was SO good and fresh tasting.

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We all have our favorite eating out hot spots and don’t get me wrong, I’m a full supporter in getting out there… in moderation! But when you are eating at home much more, you don’t have to settle for deli sandwiches or a pasta dish. Try healthier versions of your favorite eating out foods 🙂 Your stomach will thank you!

With all of that making healthy choices talk… go get a kick butt workout in and go eat some chocolate or dessert and cheers with a glass of wine! You deserve it!! Off for some more cuddles with these two Valentine’s then off to the gym.

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Until next time…. xoxo

Tired Body Tuesday!

I hope everyone is having a terrific Tuesday! I am feeling mentally and physically drained, but that was brought on by myself! Time for some relaxing tonight for a fresh start tomorrow.  Been married to this stud for 4 months today! WOOHOO!

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Still going strong on day 9 of the below junk food challenge. This one still hasn’t been a struggle for me, but there have been times where I have made a smarter decision because of this challenge, so it’s doing the job! Today consisted of….wait for it…. OATMEAL (surprise), banana with PB & granola, protein shake after lunch workout, two hard boiled eggs, string cheese, grapes, granola bar, and we are having fish for dinner. I do need to work on squeezing some more calories into my day while doing cardio, lifting, and HIIT workouts.

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Yesterday, although I did get my cardio and lift in, I did not get to Day 3 of the 30 day HIIT challenge that was scheduled for before bed. Shoot! I really want to keep on track with the challenges I take on so I jumped out of bed this morning to complete Day 3. BOY did this get my heart beating. It was pretty intense for jumping into after being out of bed for the time it took me to throw a sports bra and shorts on. OOFTA! It felt great though and I felt so good for completing it and being ready for Day 4 over my lunch break. Have you EVER regretted a workout? I haven’t! The only time I can see this happening is if you get injured or push yourself WAY too far where you are completely miserable and not smart.

DAY 3:

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Over my lunch hour I flew to the gym to complete my lift, which was Back & Bi, and finished with Day 4 of the 30 Day HIIT challenge. Hello Burpees! I incorporated a jump knee tuck with the burpees on every other set of this workout. All caught up and feeling great 🙂 I will admit with this 30 day HIIT challenge, I struggle with the rest times. I realistically probably do half of the rest time I’m supposed to and I know that is horrible. I will work on that! Does anyone else struggle with this?

Day 4:

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My lift and two HIIT workouts is most definitely the cause of my sleepiness this afternoon. But that’s okay! I would feel much worse skipping! My body isn’t screaming at me that I’ve done too much, she is just politely asking for a slow down and possible glass of wine tonight 😉 DEAL!