Saturday, March 8, 2014

Holy Buckets…I'm Back!!! Updates GALORE!!

I think my life has finally settled down enough to allow me to start blogging again.

Since my last post I had started looking for a job, living pay check to pay check, and real life decided to kick me in the a$$ with my student loan bills!  I probably put on close to 15lbs of "who cares" weight and I had no motivation to workout besides when I taught cycling 5x a week.  I felt overwhelmed, stressed out, and disappointed in myself.

Needless to say the last half of 2013 was a struggle, but 2014 turned around for me!  At the very beginning of the year I was offered a job which helped with a lot of my stress.  I had also decided in 2014 that I wanted to conquer some goals.  I wanted to tackle things I had never tried before.  I was sick of being "down."

In February one such goal kind of threw itself into my lap.  I ran into someone at a bar in town who also happened to be a fitness competition coach.  Well I was probably over revealing because I had a few too many shots and talked to him about how I'd been wanting to do a competition for years, but just didn't know how to start, what to do, how it all worked, etc.

Well about a week later I ended up meeting with him to go over prep and how contests work.  I had a contest already picked out- NPC Duel of Champions here in Omaha on June 7th, 2014 (the day after my birthday).  I had always thought I would do a bikini competition, but he thought I'd do better in a figure since I am built broader.  We took some measurements and body fat percentage.  I started at 138lbs and a little over 24% body fat.  I check in with him every two weeks for measurements.  After a month I am down to 17.95% body fat and 130lbs.  This last time I went in I had my shoes, so I also got to practice posing for the first time.  Let me tell you it looks way easier than it actually is.  I've been practicing while sitting at work or driving in the car.  I want to do as well as I possibly can.

My shoes!
That is why I have been quite diligent with my prep I figure if I'm in this and I'm going to walk on stage in 13 weeks (OMG!!) why not go for it?  And so far I am loving it.  It has given me something to work for.  I am motivated again.  Not only are my clothes fitting again (which is always nice), but I feel better and I have more energy because I'm no longer eating whatever crap.

I know some people will think I'm crazy for doing it or wonder why.  The reason I'm doing this and have wanted to is to say I did it.  The dedication and will power it takes to compete is amazing to me and I want to prove to myself I have that same dedication and will power!  I have the most amazing support group around me to push me through this.  When I told a small group of my friends they didn't judge and immediately asked if they could come cheer me on when I walk on stage.

My awesome cheerleaders after one of my races- they were the loudest ones!

The biggest issue that has popped up so far is gum.  I started chewing gum to crave my sweet tooth.  Well apparently one day I chewed too many pieces of gum (yes, it's possible).  In case you didn't know there is an ingredient in sugar free gum called Xylitol, I believe.  Well it can't really be digested by your stomach and so the bacteria in your stomach feeds on it which can cause gas in your stomach.  That gas can then turn into massive, horrible stomach cramps.  It was awful- it didn't help to lay down, it didn't help to stand up.  Nothing made it feel better.  Well, I learned my lesson and backed WAY WAY off my gum chewing habits.  

Well, I think that is enough updating for now.  Watch out for my next post!  I'm going to review a brand new product (at least to me) and a couple of possible giveaways coming your way!!!

I'll leave you with this recent quote from Academy Award winner, Lupita Nyong'o.  I think it's quite fitting, don't you?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

I'M BACK!!! (Omaha Blogger Meet-up)

I'm back..FINALLY!!  Sorry, but I had decided to take a break from blogging while I finished my last semester in college.  I was already stressed beyond my limits; why add to it?  Well now that that's over with I can get back to blogging!  First, I'll update everything that has happened recently!

First, in May I walked the stage for graduation!  Technically, I didn't graduate until this month because I had to take one class in June, but UNO has no ceremony for August graduates.

That's my family!  My parents, my brothers, my sis-in-law, and my brother's girlfriend!
I graduated with a Bachelor's in Business Administration, specializing in Small Business Management and a Minor in Marketing.  OF COURSE I celebrated after the ceremony with my friends

..and with a WOD- Burpees and Deadlifts.  FYI- late nights, shots, and crossfit don't mix!

Almost right after graduation I headed to visit my boyfriend in Davenport, IA.  He's currently playing for one of Houston Astros Single A teams.  I got to spend 6 days with him and it was exactly what I needed.  We hadn't seen each other since he left for spring training in March, I was stressed and overwhelmed by my last semester, and he is about the only person that I can completely and totally relax/be silly with and have 100% fun!  To say I needed to see him is an understatement!  Sadly, it went way too fast and had to head back to Omaha and get ready for my friend's wedding.

I was so excited because most of the "college" friends I have, I made at my first college.  I didn't really meet a whole lot of people at UNO since I already had so many friends from high school in town and I was entering in a year after everyone else had established their "cliques."  She was one of my closest friends because we had SO much in common!  We both had a love of history, which is actually where we met- World Civ II and where she met her husband!  She is my first friend to get married and I was so excited when she asked me to be a part of her big day!

Yeah, she has GREAT style.  I loved our dresses.

Then, since I don't technically get my degree until this month; I took a nannying job for the summer.  It was a ROUGH job- I spent hours by the pool catching some rays!  I also loved the fact that their mom was a dietician and therefore, I received LOTS and LOTS of fresh veggies from their garden!

July is when I started applying for jobs, so that I would hopefully be gainfully employed by the time I was finished nannying.  I interviewed at some local places and a couple that were out of town and finally decided to take a position with an insurance company in town.  In order to begin my career I had to study and pass FOUR licensing exams this weekend!  Guess what?!?

I DID IT!!!!!!  I passed them, holy crap I was stressed, sweaty, and all around FREAKING out, but I DID IT!!

This summer I completed ONLY two races and both were 5Ks.  This is pretty big for me considering I'm used to doing at least ONE marathon along with other races during the spring/summer.  It is definitely paying off though.  By focusing more on crossfit, I have put on A LOT of muscle and I'm not in pain as much!

My mom and I before the "Road to Omaha Run."  A 5K that coincided with The College World Series

My sis-in-law and I before "Midnight Madness 5K" in Ames, IA
I have another race planned in September.  Another 5K, but this one is FREE because Lululemon is AWESOME!!  They are offering a run down by the river followed by yoga, at no cost.  How awesome is that?!?

Most recently, I had the pleasure of meeting other local bloggers in the Omaha Metro Area!  Erin from wanted to connect to other local bloggers since she had just moved to the midwest and didn't really know anyone.  Well, she's awesome and got a bunch of us together for lunch at Ingredient Restaurant in Midtown Omaha.

It was so great meeting all these women!  No, we're not all fitness based which is awesome because we all have different interests and strengths.  I am more than excited to start picking their brains (especially beauty and fashion)!  We have all agreed that a once a month meet-up would be great, so expect updates to come....maybe even some fashion advice ;)  (well maybe if it contains spandex).

Okay, okay I've been dragging on but here's the LAST point I wanted to mention.  I always have this "bucket" list going on in my head.  I'm always mentally editing and adding all sorts of activities.  Amongst some of the activities have been: marathons (check), triathlon (check), be a bleach blonde (check), be a red head (check), be awesome (duh! check), graduate college (check)...okay I think you get the deal.  Well, there's been something lingering on my list for a couple years now and I've never gone for it because of fear.  Fear of failing, fear of being judged, and fear of the unknown.  Around my birthday I decided what the hell?  Who cares if I'm afraid?  I've learned that when I am afraid of scared of something, it's usually something I need to go after.  When I push past my fears, I find this whole other side of me I didn't know existed.  SOOO here it May of 2014 I will be doing a bikini competition.

I have told two people in my life- my sister-in-law and one of my best friends.  I honestly don't care what people have to say about it.  I'm not doing it for the body, for a trophy (I don't even plan on winning), or anything like that.  I want to do it to prove to myself I can.  In high school, I remember telling my cross country coach I wanted to do a tri and run a marathon, but never thought I would.  Well now I have 5 marathons, 3 halfs, and a sprint tri under my belt.  Well, the same applies here.  I've always wanted to commit myself to something so completely- it's 100% physical and 100% mental just like my races.

I want to do it for myself.  I want to strut on that stage with an insane amount of confidence.  I've always been a little self-concious when it comes to my looks because of my skin condition.  I have Keratis Pilaris.  It is usually seen on the backs of people's arms.  They are little pimple-looking red/white bumps.  It is an overproduction of keratin causing "plugs" to clog the hair follicle.  At least that's what I've been told.  It is a condition that actually 75% of the population has, but mine happens to be one of the worst cases my dermatologist has seen.  It not only covers my arms, but also covers my legs.  Unfortunately, there is nothing I can do about it other than deal.  Of course growing up when people would point it out, I'd get a little defensive.  There are times when I don't want to wear anything other than long sleeves and pants because I thought they looked so gross.  Well, I've decided to say "screw it" and no longer let me insecurity win.

I know this process will be long, sucky, and just plain brutal.  Well that sounds exactly like training for a marathon- grueling miles by myself, having to realize exactly what will happen when I put certain foods into my body and how it will affect my run.  I have already asked for guidance from the guys at Nutrishop Omaha.  They've started me out on a very healthy/well balanced diet.  I'm excited to see how this process will turn out and I will documenting all the ups and downs right here!

Well, that's everything. I think I caught you up on my crazy/hectic life since this spring..I can't believe that has all happened in less than 3 months!!  Til next time....

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Spring Cleaning

If you don't want to know anything personal about me...don't read this post.  It's not about crossfit, running, pictures, or eating healthy.  It's actually not even about "cleaning" in the usual context. I'm about to reveal some "realness"...clean out my closet...

If you know me personally, you know I'm not a believer in coincidence.  When similar things happen in a common period, I believe it's usually the universe or someone trying to tell you to get your act together and do something. 

A few things have happened within the last couple of weeks that are just too weird to be "coincidence": 

1. Somebody told me that they didn't want "big legs like mine." (I will explain why this bothered me). 
2. I learned about some people involved in some not so good relationships  (won't be expanding on this because its not my story to tell).
4. Others have told me to make sure I don't get "too big and manly because I am getting bigger."
5. Lastly, and what sent me off the edge- I read an online magazine article (, where the author said the girl in the Steubenville rape case should have been locked in her room for allowing herself to get that drunk. Full Story Here

(Okay, here's where the realness hits..Please be warned that I have literally told no one in my life this entire story..) 

It was about 6 years ago... 

I was 16, could finally drive, a junior in high school, and had my first "real" boyfriend (meaning my parents didn't have to drive me to dates).  I thought I had a pretty legit life.  Well, after about 2 weeks my "boyfriend" showed his real personality...

I was a cliche teenage girl.  I went after the "bad boy."  He was a bad boy, like a real bad boy.  He'd been in and out of the local boys' homes. My dad and my brothers couldn't stand him and my mom was just trying to be polite.  They thought he was too cocky, too childish, and not good enough.  I thought I could be the girl to "fix" him and in return he would love me.  Well, obviously in no universe would that happen...

He started pointing out "problems" on me: my genetic skin condition that covers my arms and legs, he nicknamed me "jell-o" because different parts of me would jiggle a little when he poked, or he would pinch my stomach and leg fat.  He would tell me that given the opportunity he would try and "get with" my best friends because they either had better bodies or a prettier face than me.  On a few occasions, he called my friends to proposition them!  He would put me down, but then he would call me back and talk about how he cared about me and that he was just trying to be honest.  I figured this was normal, if I could just wait this out.  If I could lose a few pounds, wear my hair and my clothes like "my pretty friends," he wouldn't make fun of me.  I thought if I just fixed myself, that he'd like me..I'd be enough for him...

I think I cried  I'm not talking a few tear drops.  I'm talking all out, you lose your breath, your makeup is smeared all over your face, ugly cry.  (And if you know me at all, you know I'm not a crier.  I really don't cry unless I'm completely exhausted and then something sends me over the edge).  I was miserable because I felt worthless, that clearly I had done something wrong or else how could someone be that mean? 

Well, after about 2-3 months of this we were at his house and he was talking about how hot my best friend was and how I should figure out how to look like that.  Meanwhile, another one of my friends texted me, asking me where I was because my "boyfriend" was texting her; asking to hook up.  I was fed up and didn't say another word other than that I was leaving to go hang out with my friends at my high school's basketball game.  He rolled his eyes and smirked, saying I was overreacting and shoved me onto his bed, saying I wouldn't go to the game and my friends were all lying.  The only problem was that this wasn't a play shove, but a meaningful, put some muscle into it, shove.  

I have no idea what happened inside of me.  I don't know if I finally woke up or what.  He had hit some internal nerve I didn't even know I had.  He had tried to hurt me, physically this time, and I was done...forever.  I walked out of his room, out of his house, and out of his life.  I was blessed enough to have met him when I was 16; when it was easy to leave.  We hadn't started a life together, we didn't have any mutual property, or (thank goodness) children.  

I cried my eyes out the entire way to the basketball game, but no one at the basketball game knew what had happened.  I put on a happy face and smiled/laughed my whole way through.   Afterwards, I just went home and again cried my eyes out.   

For a couple weeks, he would text or call me, but I did everything in my power to not answer.  I deleted his number from my phone and I labeled different numbers he would try and call me from as, "Don't Answer."  Then, the calls stopped.  I started to slowly put myself back together.  I came to realize that I wasn't the ugly one and I wasn't the one that needed to change.

Was this a long relationship, no it actually only lasted a few months, but it still stung as bad.  Each word, each dig pushed me further down.  

To this day I still have to remind myself that I AM ENOUGH.  That I am strong, I am beautiful, and no one can make me feel differently.  I have to remind myself that no matter what others think, I AM ENOUGH.

I think this is why I get so defensive when people make comments about my looks (or even other people's looks) or when people judge others for their personal relationships.  Saying that they should handle it in private, that it must be the victim's fault, why didn't they come forward sooner, or that the victim is just "overreacting."  Until, you can witness first hand this kind of relationship or you have been in one, you cannot judge another.  It's a horrible, wretched place to me physically and mentally.  You feel completely helpless, as though it's all your doing and,  "goddamnit, if I could just lose those 5lbs..he wouldn't think I'm so gross."  You don't go looking for help at first because he apologizes, he does something nice, you think you're overreacting, or (like me) you truly believe it's your fault.  

I don't like being put in those types of situations because it brings me back to that time in my life, however short lived.  So, even though it hurt to be brought back to that place by recent events (I have to constantly watch myself- make sure I'm not judging too harshly or putting myself down); it helps others.  Other people need to know that they are not alone.  They need to hear that ANY kind of abuse- physical and emotional are NEVER acceptable.  People need to know that whether are not there are bruises left or that they don't have to wear sunglasses or longsleeves to hide the marks, it's still NOT ACCEPTABLE!

I do thank whoever is watching over me that at least that part of my life is in the past.  I never plan on going back there or letting anything similar happen again.  Finally, I make sure to support anyone going through a similar situation.  

There it spring "realness"

Many people know I love Marilyn Monroe, but no one knows that this is the experience that inspired my tattoo

Friday, March 15, 2013

The Positives in Failures

Another post/rant about why I LOVE Crossfit.  I know you probably see these all over the place and I know I've written about it, but hey maybe there's something to this..maybe Crossfit is really THAT great! 

The reason I started crossfit (deep down the REAL, god honest reason):
I wanted to LOOK HOT.  Let's be honest everyone wants to look good.  People want to be that person that the crowd turns around and takes a double take because they can't believe their eyes.  We're all a little vain..and there's nothing wrong with this.  When I originally started crossfit, I wanted to look like Ms. Justine Munroe (pictured- found on

I wanted to compete in a competition because I wanted those abs.  I never have had abs, so I figured I'd be happy if I could just get those cuts.  Well I found out quickly that my priorities changed....

What I got from crossfit (it wasn't the hot bod):  Okay, yes my muscles have grown and I am a little more toned, but not in any extreme fashion.  What I got from crossfit was something totally different:
- I became stronger
- I became more flexible
- I feel stronger, more independent
- I feel more confident in my own skin
- I feel more confident on my views
- I am more determined and have a stronger will power

Why I stay, even though I fail: People have asked me why I do crossfit- I'm not as strong (or will ever be) as many of the elite.  I have many goats (weaknesses) and am still working on...well, everything (pull-ups, lifts, gymnastics, etc.).  My response/defense is that I wasn't ever going to win a marathon, not even close, but I still ran because why let failure stop you?

If we avoided things we weren't good at or failed at; how would we grow?  How would we find out what we're good at?  That's why I love crossfit.  Many of the people at my box will never compete in The Games or even be considered a "contender."  I'm okay with that because even though we fail at one point or another, we're always there for each other!!

Even though I may not complete a WOD, I can tell I'm progressing. I didn't finish Monday's WOD:
3 Rounds-
10 Pullups
30 Double Unders.

At first, I was pissed.  I wanted to walk away and mope, but then I had to think of something to take away.  What did I decide to take away??  It was my first WOD EVER I did unassisted pull-ups.  I always had to use some sort of band, even a really really thin one.   But I did this one all on my own and I was pretty damn proud of myself!

The final point and reason behind my post: The Open

The Crossfit Open is 1 WOD a week from March 5-April 7.  You can try each WOD as many times that week, as you would like.  Just make sure your score is in by that Sunday.  Nothing can be scaled, so if you can't lift a weight; you just keep trying and trying. 

I was terrified last week.

WOD Week 1:
17min AMRAP
40 Burpees
30 Snatches (45#)
30 Burpees
30 Snatches (75#)
20 Burpees
30 Snatches (100#)
10 Burpees
As Many Snatches at 120# for remainder of time

I had only ever snatched 73# and it was THAT Thursday!  How in the world was I going to do 75# two days later?  Well, I didn't but it was a great learning experience and I couldn't be happier that I did it.  Did I do well..hell no, but my friends from my box were still cheering me on.  How could you want to be a part of that community?
Tomorrow I'll be trying Week 2 WOD:
10min AMRAP:
5 Shoulder to Overhead (75#)--thank god I just got 100# on my split jerk!
10 Deadlifts (same weight)
15 Box Jumps (20in)
I know it doesn't look difficult, but I think my biggest struggle will be fatigue.  It's easy to get cocky and think I'll knock this out, but going too quick on deadlifts could ruin my box jumps.  I guess only time will tell...literally.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Cowtown 5K and Half Marathon

Two races in one weekend?  No run training since December?  Hey...why not?
These were my exact thoughts going into my 5K and Half Marathon race weekend in Fort Worth, TX....

Okay, so I had this AMAZING post written out and apparently my computer didn't save it.  I really don't have the energy to write it all over again, so I'll just explain it through my pictures!!

Our flight had gotten cancelled because of the snow storm from hell
They got us on the PLANE!!
Roger from Southwest got us rerouted from Omaha-Orlando-New Mexico-Dallas

We were alright with the stop in FL..we went from negative temps to 81!

We thought my sis-in-law needed some bling before we got to TX
Who doesn't want a shirt with wolves?!
During the weekend we ate at a food truck park!  Have you heard of these places?!  Well, they're pretty much the coolest thing EVER!!  My sis-in-law and I ate at the Gluten-Free truck..we both have sensitive tummies!

We didn't eat here, but had to take a dad belongs to the German American Society!

Picnic with my aunt, sis-in-law, and brother

Before my half..had my EnergyBits with me and took them at mile 8.  

The half and full racers!  My uncle, me, and sis-in-law did the half.  My brother rocked the full!
If you do one of the races (half, full, ultra) for 5 years in a row your medals form the Texas Star.  My uncle just did his 5th this's his star!!

This may be my motivation to come back to this race!!  Other than having to deal with two snowstorms from hell while we were trying to travel back and forth from Texas, it was an AMAZING weekend.  The course was awesome, the crowd was fantastic, and not to mention hanging out with my family was great!  

Have you run any races recently?  What's your favorite?? 

Friday, March 8, 2013

Suzie Homemaker Alert!!

This crazy thing has been happening this past weekend.  I've been spending more time in the kitchen (insert sexist joke here).  I've decided that I want to save WAY more money, so that I can possibly move away from Omaha after I get my degree.  I noticed I tend to spend the most amount of wasted money on food from Panera or Blue Planet Natural Grill (a local restaurant that only makes food from fresh ingredients and doesn't fry anything!).  

They are both AMAZE-BALLS, but let's face it..they're not saving me anything.  I started searching on Pinterest and the internet for healthy, easy-to-make meals for myself.  Here's what I've come up with so far:

Grain Free Tortillas and Tacos

Makes 1 large tortilla or 2 small

2 tbsp almond flour
1/2 tbsp water
1 egg
Mix together and cook on med heat skillet.  Flip when golden brown (about 3min). Cook for another 2-3min

Top with choice of meat, veggies, and other taco toppers.  In this picture I have ground turkey, lettuce, and organic salsa

Naked Turkey Burgers (from Muscle and Fitness Hers)

Makes 7 small turkey burgers

1lb ground turkey
1egg white
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 garlic powder
1/4 poultry seasoning
2tsp Dijon mustard
(I also added 1/4 cup bread crumbs)

Combine all ingredients and divide into patties
Cook on skillet or grill! (It was too cold to fire up the grill so I opted for the skillet)

Sweet Potato Chips

1 sweet potato
1tsp olive oil

Cut thin with mandolin (I LOVE MY MANDOLIN!)
Toss with olive oil and spread on cooking sheet (make sure they don't overlap)
Cook at 400 for 25-30min

Also, I made the turkey burgers and sweet potato chips on the same day, so I decided to top the burgers with some chips.  My only remark--WHY DID I NOT THINK OF THIS BEFORE?!?

Avocado, Egg, and Bacon Bake (from Pinterest- not sure who made it)

It's pretty simple:
Cut avocado, take out pit and about 3/4 of the insides and save for meals
Put in cooking pan WITH LIPS!! (this is so the avocado doesn't roll over and dump out the egg). 
CAREFULLY pour egg in each side of the avocado.
Sprinkle on top UNCOOKED bacon
Bake at 425 for at least 15min (more if you like your egg cooked well- like me)

...Oh and for anyone that thinks eating little to nothing is the way to go..well here's my answer..

YEAH..I eat a lot of food!!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Pre-Cowtown Jitters

It's finally here...race week!!!

Of course it can't come without some impending Winter Storm Q (yeah, apparently weather guys up here were getting upset that our big storms don't get names..) that's supposed to drop a foot of snow the day I am supposed to leave for Texas.  While writing this we decided to leave a day early to just not play with fate or Mother Nature (she's a real testy lady). Also, if I haven't mentioned my training for this half marathon has been (put on your ear muffs) a total shit storm.  I've been teaching cycling classes 4x a week, take college classes 4x a week, and do crossfit 4-6x a week.  Plus last week I got the 'end of the world, I hate my life, put me down now' stomach flu.  I was pretty much on a Gatorade diet from Tuesday-Sunday.

I'm hoping some serious adrenaline will kick in and my new strong muscles will carry me through the 5K on Saturday and 13.1 miles on Sunday (did I mentioned I signed up for the Cowtown Challenge..yeah it comes with a sick medal)!

I have no plans or estimated finishing time for this race, just because of how poorly this training has gone.  I just want to go out there, maybe without my watch (?!), and hopefully fall in love with running again.  I want to enjoy the company of my family and the scenery of Fort Worth (yes, I'm serious..I LOVE Fort Worth). I'm kind of excited just to have fun and no pressure on this race!!

I plan on using ENERGYBits about halfway through to help me finish this race!  I'll let you know how it goes!

Do you have any big races or events coming up? How do you deal with obstacles that come up?