Friday, February 5, 2016

5 Easy Power Bowl Recipes

Oh hey Friday! It's you again; I must say that I'm happy to see you because you brought my husband back from traveling for the second week in a row. These weeks alone with Chloe aren't always the easiest, but we're pulling though. The one good thing about being home alone is that I can eat what I want and not have to worry about whether or not JP will like it! This week I participated in a 5 day healthy eating challenge with one of the awesome members at my gym! She asked if I would be interested in participating, and I jumped on it because I know that my eating habits haven't been the best lately. Plus, I would get new recipes to try and a group of challengers for encouragement. This challenge inspired me to cook up some new power bowls for lunch. I made up a few recipes, used an old one and borrowed one from another challenger. I thought I'd share 5 of my favorite bowls with y'all to try out and use on your healthy eating journeys!


one.

Roasted Sweet Potato and Spinach Bowl!
1 lb ground turkey {brown on stove}
1-2 sweet potatoes cut into 1 inch cubes {roast in oven at 425* for 20 minutes}
2 cups spinach {sauté on stove with just a bit of olive oil}
1 small can of sautéed mushrooms {optional}

Combine all ingredients in large pan on stove. Add about 1/2 cup of chicken broth and stir. Allow to simmer on low for 3-7 minutes or until chicken broth has cooked down. 
Separate into 4 containers then eat or serve!



two.

Burrito Power Bowl!
**You can use different types of meat for this one: shredded chicken, diced steak, ground turkey. I used ground turkey on this one because I split the batch to make two different meals!**

1 lb meat of choice **see above**
3/4 cup frozen or fresh corn 
3/4 cup unshelled edamame
1/4 cup salsa
1 packet taco seasoning
2 cups cauliflower rice {You can sub 2 cups cooked rice of choice}

Cook meat of choice. Heat corn and edamame according to packaging. Combine all ingredients in pan on stove. Add 1/2 cup of water. Stir together and let simmer on low as water cooks off.
**I didn't have corn when I made mine the other day and used mushrooms from the first power bowl!**
  


three.

Turkey Taco Bags!
1 lb ground turkey {brown on the stove}
1 cup quinoa {before cooking, cook according to packaging}
1 cup unshelled edamame {heat in microwave or on stove}
1 packet taco seasoning {season fully cooked browned turkey}
4 quart sized baggies
Once all ingredients are cooked, combine and stir together. Then evenly distribute between 4 baggies or less if you plan on eating it right away. Place in freezer to store for next meal!


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four.

Southwest Chicken Power Bowl!
**This is clearly not my picture. I'm not that good. I have made this bowl before, but with some tweaks that I plan on sharing with y'all! Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of mine. Or maybe fortunately because this looks much prettier than mine!**

1.25 lb boneless skinless chicken breast {grilled or cooked in crockpot, your preference}
2 cups brown rice {cook according to packaging}
Juice from one lime
1 can black beans {drained and rinsed}
1 cup frozen {thawed} or fresh corn
1 large avocado {pitted and diced}
1 cup grape tomatoes {sliced in half}

Pour lime juice over cooked rice and mix thoroughly to coat all rice. In four separate containers, split each of the ingredients evenly. Serve or store in an air tight container and enjoy!


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five.

PB&J Breakfast Bowl!
**Again, not my picture. I made this one quite a while ago and if I remember correctly, it was not beautiful looking. There was yogurt on the edges and my peanuts were not placed so beautifully. Oh well, that's what food bloggers are for, taking pictures of food that actually makes you want to eat it.**

6-8oz non-fat Greek yogurt
1 Tbsp of natural peanut butter {I love honey roasted from Whole Foods!}
1 Tbsp jam of choice {I used strawberry}
Small handful of peanuts
Pinch of sea salt

Mix ingredients together in a bowl and enjoy! Feel free to add in some fresh fruit as well. I added sliced strawberries to this one. This is great for a busy momma trying to keep a little baby entertained! You can make it quickly and munch on it as you're keeping the little one entertained.



Here are my tips for making healthy, hearty power bowls:

  • Choose a protein and how you want to cook it; slow cooker, grill, stove, oven. Eggs are also an option for protein; boiled, scrambled, however you want it.
  • All veggies are game! Choose your veggies based on what your body is craving or add together your favorites. The more the merrier. It's also a great way to try a veggie you may not usually eat.
  • Fresh, frozen, canned. Don't discriminate! Chop up fresh veggies ahead of time to make it easier. Thaw out your frozen ones and rinse your canned ones to eliminate some of the added sodium.
  • Don't forget the fruit. Fruit is great for breakfast bowls! Try to stick to fruits with more fiber like apples, oranges, pears. 
  • Rice, quinoa, sweet potatoes, cauliflower rice and get ways to beef up your bowl without spiking your blood sugar.
  • Combine your choice of ingredients. Mix them all together or place them on top of rice or quinoa. 
  • Try different combinations. You'll find lots of things you like together.
  • Split up your protein and make two different bowls at the same time. You can create them for the week and have a couple options if you don't like eating the same thing every day!

Chloe has been having her own version of power bowls this week! We started solids and so far some of her favorite combinations are oatmeal & banana, oatmeal & squash, and banana & avocado! Sweet potatoes and green beans have also been a hit. Not together. Separately. I'm not sure about adding those together, but who knows what crazy concoctions she'll enjoy!



Don't forget to check out the links under the last two pictures for even more delicious recipes. I like these food bloggers!

Happy Friday and have a wonderful weekend y'all!

Do you like to prep power bowls for the week?
What are your favorite ingredients to mix together?




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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Marathon to Mom: How my running has changed.

Marathon.
I am a runner. I started running with the goal of completing a half marathon because why not? I was in my last semester of college with some free time on my hands. I was in great shape thanks to my jobs as a gymnastics coach and group fitness instructor. I wanted to challenge myself to something new. Something more. The day that I crossed my first finish line, I became a runner.



Sometimes it's hard for me to believe that just 3 years ago I completed my first marathon. Not only did I run it, but I ran it in 4:01:51. A 4 hour marathoner. Then I turned around and ran another in 2014 with a 4:03:39! I earned the title of marathoner and remember the pride and joy I felt back then. I was a runner on a mission to conquer my goals and push my limits. I signed up for the 2015 Chevron Houston marathon ready to do it again. This time, I wanted to break that evil 4 hour barrier that I was hovering around and become a sub-4 hour marathoner. God had another plan for me and gave me something much greater than a sub-4 hour marathon time. He gave me the gift of life and made me a mommy.



During my first trimester, I pulled back and decided to still run the half marathon. I wrote about how running in my first trimester effected my training. As we got closer to the race, the harder it was for me to run. My morning sickness was pretty intense and made running for longer than 30 minutes nearly impossible. I learned that my pregnancy pace was quite different than my pre-pregnancy pace. Now I'm still learning that my post-pregnancy pace is quite different again!

A few weeks into my second trimester, I severely sprained my ankle while running. This halted my running during pregnancy. {Except for a 5K that I walked with my boot on despite being told to rest!} I was hoping to be able to run up until the end, but clearly God again had other plans for me. Growing this little baby was far more important than running.



The lack of running during pregnancy made getting back into the swing of running quite challenging post delivery. I wrote a post about getting back to running postpartum and after re-reading it, I feel like these words couldn't be more true! Mommas, don't get discouraged. It's hard to find your rhythm with your new body and new routine. Take it slow and steady. Your body needs time to fully recover, and I've learned now that it will.

Mom.
So where am I now? My baby girl is 6 months old, and my body has had 6 months to heal and begin to return to its new normal. I think I jumped into things too fast which caused some additional injuries and slowed my healing process. I started running again about a month postpartum. Now don't get me wrong, I didn't try to get out there and do what I used to do. I started slow with short distances. I returned to work at 9 weeks postpartum and started physical therapy 10 weeks postpartum. I believe that a combination of all these different types of activities didn't allow my ligaments to continue healing. I ended up staying in physical therapy for 7 weeks to deal with ankle and hip problems. The hip pain I dealt with in October and November halted my running and training completely.



Thankfully, I'm past the pain and injuries and back into my new racing shape. I finished two half marathons this January at 5 and 5 1/2 months postpartum, and plan to continue on this journey.

Here's how my running has truly changed:

  • My new race pace is between 9:15-9:30 minutes per mile. It used to be sub 9:00. 
  • My new easy distance is 3 miles. I used to be able to knock out 5-6 with no problems. These days that distance takes it out of me. Not to mention it takes quite a bit of time!
  • My body aches post run. My hips and hip flexors are tight and need serious stretching post run. 
  • I try to run 3 days per week. I used to run 5 days per week! 
  • Some of my runs are actually run/walks. I'll walk a bit with Chloe, then run for a little while, and go back to power walking. It makes running more enjoyable when I'm not constantly pushing my body and my lungs to their limits these days!
  • When I hit a killer pace, these days it must be documented!



There you have it. I'm far from a momma superstar that magically jumped back into her post baby body. I've worked and pushed for it, and it wasn't easy. I'm still trying to learn my new normal and when to dial back. Pushing my limits isn't something that I want to do as often as I used to. I'm sure I'll get back there eventually, but I have to remember I'm still in the healing process for another few months. After the injuries I've dealt with, I don't want to over do it!

For now, I'm going to continue running. I'm hoping to find a half marathon that I want to run in March or April before it gets too hot in Texas. I'm also participating in the 2,016 miles in 2016 with my friends Julie and Danielle! As a team, we're going to run a total of 2,016 miles this year. That comes to 168 miles per month per team. Individually, we have to try and get in 56 miles a month on average. I finished 60 miles last month! I think the 2 half marathons I finished helped a lot there. I've started February with a solid 3.4 and plan to keep on track each month. It's nice to have a reason to "count" that 2 mile run I did at the gym or the walk/jog I did on the bayou with Chloe. It makes every time I get out there feel like it has a purpose.

Happy running y'all!

Did y'all have any issues with running post baby?
Have you ever had something happen in life that altered your fitness "normal"?

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Monday, February 1, 2016

Chloe Grace: 6 Months Old



On Friday, my little ChloWorm celebrated her half birthday! 6 months y'all! It's hard to believe that she's been here with us for half a year already. They say that time goes by in the blink of an eye when you have little ones, and I'm learning that those are too true. My little wiggle worm is getting bigger and growing into a little lady before my eyes!



After the craziness of traveling and the holidays, this past month has been a little more low key. Well, the second half of the month it was low key. Chloe started her 5 month going BACK to Disney World! I have a Disney baby, what can I say? This second trip was a bit different then the first. It was longer, there were more people in our group, we ran some races and most importantly, Daddy came with us! Here are a few of our Disney recap posts if you missed them! {here, here, here}



Once we returned from Disney, nearly half the month had passed! This is when things slowed WAY down. Thank goodness! We stayed home during the weekends and spent quality time together going on walks, playing in Chloe's room, practicing Chloe's sitting skills, playing with our puppies and just snuggling.



These days Chloe loves to sit up all by herself! She has mastered the skill and can even pull herself from sitting to standing while holding onto my fingers. Slow down little one! I think her ability to sit on her own has increased her interest in the toys around her. She really started to enjoy playing this past month. She has become very grabby and wants to get ahold of everything! Her Exersaucer is still a favorite spot for self entertainment. Now she can actually press on the animals and buttons to see the cause and effect. For example, she can press on the elephant to make him trumpet or pull the helicopter to make a sound. Typing it out, it seems like such a little thing, but as a momma, it's those little things that make your heart soar. I love watching her interact with people and things. She studies everything with more intentions now, and I can tell her little brain is working so hard!



Chloe has been teething for the past few months. She drools everywhere and loves to put everything in that little mouth of her. Speaking of putting things in her mouth, we started solids on her 6 month birthday! Our first attempt was oatmeal mixed with breastmilk. As you can see above, she wasn't too sure about it. The next morning, we tried sweet potatoes and they were a success! We've also given her fresh banana in her mesh feeder which I'm pretty sure is her favorite so far. I've been making food for her over this past week in our Baby Bullet, and it's so fun! I have sweet potatoes mixed with breast milk, bananas, squash and zucchini in the freezer right now. After we try these basic starters, I'll work on getting more creative. The Baby Bullet came with a recipe book and a grocery guide which I know will be so helpful!



Since she's a busy, growing girl, trying solid food wasn't the only first this month! This month's firsts:
  • First wedding {Collin and Maggie}
  • First family vacation
  • First time at a race expo {She actually went to 2 this month!}
  • First time to sit casually!
  • First night in her own crib {though unsuccessful}
  • First week without Daddy
  • First time in a swing at the park
  • First solid foods!


My Darling Chloe Grace,

Another month has gone by and you continue to amaze me. You grow, change and learn so much in a mere 30 days! This past month you have met so many milestones from learning to sit up like a big girl to intentionally reaching for toys and people. I love the way your eyes light up when I come into a the room or when I come home from work. It makes me so happy to know that you love me just as much as I love you! You're a special little girl with the most beautiful personality in the whole world!

This past month was exciting! We went to Disney World again and you were so good on our trip. It was exhausting, but worth it. When we came home, I tried to get you to start sleeping in your own room. Let's just say, that didn't happen. After 3 nights of Mommy getting up 3 times and you ending up in our bed in the end, I decided you just weren't ready yet. While I love our nightly cuddle sessions, I think it's time we work on weening you off of those. Since you started eating real food this week, I hope that your little tummy will hold off longer each night. We'll see what happens and maybe you'll be in your room by the end of this month. We'll know when you're ready!

You are such a happy girl these days, and you have so many favorite things! Bath time is your favorite, so I can't wait to get you started in swim lessons in the next few months. You also love story time while we rock together in your room. Lately, we've been playing in your room a lot! You love your play gym especially now that you can interact with it so much more. All the different sounds you can make while you move around keeps you entertained for quite a while.  You're constantly working and trying to grab a hold of anything you can get your hands on! You really like Mommy's hair, Daddy's arm hair and Maggie's head. I have to start watching you at the store so you don't grab ahold of things on the shelves. Your movements are becoming quite calculated, and I'm going to be in trouble with your curiosity once you're on the move. I'm okay with that though. Curiosity is one of the best ways to learn.

As always, I can't believe how fast time is flying and what a big girl you're becoming. You'll always be my little baby though. I love you more and more each day. It's hard to believe that a heart can hold that much love for someone else! I know that it will only continue to grow just as you do. Baby girl, keep learning and growing while you become your own person. I am so blessed to be your mommy and your best friend. I love you to the moon and back. Keep being you, little bug!

I love you forever,
Momma

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Friday, January 29, 2016

Oh Hey Friday!



one. This little lady is celebrating her 6 month birthday today. Half a year y'all! Didn't I just give birth? Apparently not, that was 6 months ago. Today we have her 6 month appointment and I'm excited to hear her stats. She's definitely a healthy little girl! I'm proud to say that in 6 months we exclusively breastfed (breastmilk in a bottle when I work) and she never got sick. I'll share her full 6 month update on Monday!


two. This puppy loves her baby and this baby loves her puppy. Maggie isn't always that gentle around people, so we were nervous about how she would handle Chloe. It is so sweet how gentle and kind she is! She licks her face a little more often then I'd like, but she's just being momma pup and getting the drool off her face. Now that Chloe is reaching and grabbing, Maggie doesn't even flinch when Chlo gets a fist full of her fur. It's just the best. I can't wait to watch these two as she grows.
{Don't worry, Moose is still around, he's just less interested in Chloe these days! Plus he's hard to take pictures of unless he's outside.}


three. I can't stop laughing. Thank you Snapchat for giving me this filter to take way too many ridiculous pictures of my daughter. Enough said.





four. We survived Daddy's first trip away from us! That's right, JP has been gone since Monday afternoon and didn't get back until LATE last night. We were already asleep in bed. I had been dreading this trip for weeks because I like having him here and I wasn't sure how I'd do without him. We managed, but not without lots of help from Auntie Annie, Leah, my mom, Matt and Emily! I appreciate y'all more than you know! 


Yesterday, Emily, Chlo and I had a relaxing girls day. Since it was so beautiful, we took Chloe to Pecan Park near my parents' house. She had a few firsts on her last day as a 5 month old...she went in the swing and down the slide for the first time! You go girl. It's safe to say she loved it.



five. Recipe time! This time, I chose a breakfast recipe. A twist on a classic that didn't disappoint at all! Last week, I made breakfast for dinner. I've made a few Trader Joe's runs lately and decided to pull something together with a lot of the ingredients I bought there.

Cinnamon Raisin French Toast

Ingredients
4 slices of Cinnamon Raisin bread {The bread at TJ's is thick and amazing}
1/2 cup of Egg Beaters {Sub: 2 large eggs}
1/2 tsp Vanilla
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
Splash of Almond Milk
Coconut Oil Spray {Sub: Preferred cooking spray}
Butter
Powdered Sugar
Maple Syrup



Directions
Heat a skillet with cooking spray on medium heat.
Mix together the egg, vanilla, cinnamon and milk with a whisk until combined.
Dip the bread into the mixture. Let it sit for a moment to let it soak in. Flip and coat other side.
Place dipped bread in skillet and cook for about 2-3 minutes or until golden brown. Flip and cook other side.
Serve with your choice of toppings. I love a little butter and powdered sugar!

Making French toast with a different type of bread is delicious and I HIGHLY recommend it. It's even better when you eat it for dinner!

Have a great weekend y'all!
Linking up:



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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

2016 Aramco Houston Half Marathon Recap

Another day, another half marathon recap post! I figured since I ran back to back weekends, it was only appropriate to share recap back to back weeks.



EXPO
The race expo was as always at George R. Brown Convention Center. It's nice that it's there because that's also where you're supposed to go race day morning. It gives you the opportunity to figure out where to park on race day and where you need to be if you haven't run the race before. Luckily for us, this is my 6th year and JP's 3rd to run in Houston. We decided to tackle the expo Friday late afternoon around 3:30pm.


I was very impressed by this year's expo. The Houston Marathon expo usually doesn't disappoint. There are always lots of vendors, tons of freebies and quite a few samples, but this year's just seemed to be even better. The vendors weren't necessarily different, and samples were about the same; a few hydration samples, Cliff bar and some fruit can always be expected. But the freebies and interactive activities were on point. Aramco handed out nice drawstring bags, ABB handed out gloves for race day that you can throw away, Chevron handed out posters and bam bam sticks for supporters in the crowds and Dick's Sporting Goods had all sorts of stuff! There were giant 13.1 or 26.2 numbers that you could take pictures with. They even included signs to make for your pictures! Dick's also had a giant dice game that you rolled to see what activity you got like push ups, balancing, hopping, sit ups, etc. Once you completed the activity based on what your age group should be capable of completing, you rolled another dice to see what prize you won! I thought it was a fun addition to the whole expo experience.


The expo itself was organized and set up beautifully. We didn't have any trouble with packet pick up or getting our t-shirts. As always, the expo flow was smooth and they really had it all together. Since we went Friday, it was much less crowded which I'm sure made the experience even better for us.



RACE DAY
Race day morning, our alarm went off at 5:00am. Kind of early, but nothing out of the ordinary for me. Not to mention, this was 2 hours later than our Disney wake up call. We got up, moving an quickly got ready. Chloe spent the night at my parents' house (her first night away from momma!), so I had to pump before we took off. Oh the joys of being a breastfeeding momma. But trust me, it's beyond worth it! We had laid our gear out the night before, so getting ready was a breeze and we were out the door by 5:45am.

We live just outside of downtown, so it was an easy 10 minute drive in to find parking. Beware! Parking can be super expensive around the convention center.. There were lots for up to $30. If you don't mind walking a little further post race, then you can go down some side streets and find parking for closer to $15. Still expensive, but half as much. Since we were running the half, it didn't bother me to walk a bit farther. Had I been running the full, I would have requested a better parking spot for sure! Once we parked, we briskly walked in the 40 degree air to George R Brown. Signs were out leading the way, so we had no trouble corralling our way in. Once inside, it was organized chaos. It was chaotic be causes there were so many runners. The lines for the port-o-potties were pretty long, but we had time so we waited. By the time we were done, we decided to just head out and get to our corral!


It was 6:40am at this point and Corral A just closed its gates. We were in Corral B and they didn't have nearly enough people checking bibs because it took us 5 minutes just to get in! It was definitely a mess, but we made it in just in time for the National Anthem to start. This at least minimized the
amount of standing around in the cold. We got a quick stretch in and were ready to go!


 The race run went off at 7:00am and we crossed the start line at 7:12! Our plan was to run a 10:00 pace per mile, similar to what we did at Disney the week before. We knew it was slower than our usual pace, but manageable given our lack of training. The weather was in our favor! It was cold, but the sun was out and there was low humidity. This is so rare for Houston but a welcome treat. I think this and the adrenaline of race day that had us running a bit faster than planned. Nothing crazy, 9:45 for the first mile. We felt fine, so I just held us at that pace for a bit. Just after the first mile, my shoe came untied! That was weird since I had literally double knotted them in the convention center! We had to pull over so I could quickly re-tie and tuck in my shoe laces. It worked because I didn't have any problems after that!

Mile 2 was a bit slower thanks to our random pit stop, but other than that, we maintained roughly a 9:50 pace. It was fun running through the streets that we drive down almost every day! This was my 6th Houston marathon weekend race. I ran the half in 2011 & 2012, the full in 2013 & 2014 and back to the half in 2015 & 2016. Every year I love the course and it never gets old. The crowds in Houston are AMAZING! There are people throughout a majority of the course supporting all the runners. It's pretty awesome and it's part of the reason I keep coming. Back year after year.

At mile 8 near Rice University and the medical center, the marathoners veer right and the half marathoners keep going straight! It is such a wonderful sight as a half marathoner. It's nice to know that I didn't sign up to run 26.2 miles this year. I wouldn't have been prepared at all. Once the half marathoners are on our own, we head down Montrose Boulevard. These are mine and JPs stomping grounds! We run several miles down Montrose and even pass our street before hitting Mile 11 and turning onto Allen Parkway for the home stretch. At Mile 11, I was feeling fantastic! We had kept our steady pace for a while, but here I picked up a bit. I didn't realize it, but JP did! He told me that if I was feeling good to just keep going. So I did. 

I saw some friends from college as we turned onto Allen and I was in the zone. I picked up to a 9:20-9:30 pace. Still slower than I used to run, but faster then I had been! I was able to maintain it all the way into downtown. When the finish line was in sight, I picked it up and sped into the finish! I don't know where the extra energy came from, but it felt amazing. I had such a rush as I crossed the finish line. My official race time was 2:06:53 and JP came in only 45 seconds after me! We shaved 6 minutes off of our Disney watch time in just one week!

 
We were definitely sore and achy after our finish, so we hobbled into the convention center to get all our gear! Finisher shirts, bananas, ice cream, hot breakfast, chocolate milk, and so much more! The hHouston marathon doesn't disappoint when it comes to post race goodies. After we stretched, ate breakfast and took a necessary finisher selfie, we headed to the car so we could get home to our baby girl!


I was so proud of us yet again for another strong race! It's wonderful to be able to do things like this with my husband. We haven't let having a baby rule our lives. We still do the things we love, hang out with friends and enjoy life...it's just a little different. And we may need a little extra help. Life is so much better with her in it and she makes me better! I've officially ran 2 half marathons post baby and I'm ready to keep going and keep improving. 

As always, I'm ready to sign up for Houston again next year! They put on too good of a race not to keep coming back for more!



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Monday, January 25, 2016

5 years ago...

...I woke up and decided to start a blog! It's crazy to think that (a) I've been doing this for that long, (b) I didn't quit, and (c) that there are people still around reading my random musings!

Five years is a long time. I mean, people have "5 year plans." In five years, I could have...

  • attended college and graduated. (Good thing I already had that one under my belt.)
  • had a few babies. (I did have one!)
  • moved across the country. (Oh wait, I did that.)
  • changed careers. (Yeah, I did that too.)
  • achieved world domination. (I didn't get started seriously until about 3 years ago, so I've got some time.)

I know that the past few years, I haven't been posting as often and lately my content can be kind of Chloe focused, but hey, that's life right? And this is a blog all about finding a balance in life. I thought it would be fun to take a look back at how I got into this space and how it's changed over the past 5 years!



2011
It's all started with this little post. JP and I moved to Pittsburgh and I realized right away that telling the same story over and over again was kind of a hassle. I literally started this blog as a way to keep my family and friends updated on our lives from across the country. That's how A Glimpse of the Gouglers was born. I shared my posts on Facebook for people to read, but that was about it until that fall when I actually found and connected with "the blogging world." Pinterest was new and all the rage. I began crafting and cooking more in my free time and found my blogs view and number expanding beyond family and friends!



2012
We moved back to Texas with our pup Maggie. I was very invested in the blog at this point and loved interacting with the blogging community. I started going to blogger meet ups and making new "blog friends" around Houston. Blog talk and just girl talk with other bloggers helped to boost my creativity and find new blogs to follow. It's funny how much more invested you are when you know the people that are reading your blog and you know the face behind the site when you're reading. 



2013
Midway through the year, I decided to rename my blog A Balancing Act. It was no longer simply about my family, but more of a healthy living, lifestyle blog. A place to find the balance of a healthy, happy life! I became even more invested in healthy living when I took a risk, quit my job in sales operations, took the NASM CPT and became a full time fitness specialist. This career change solidified the focus of my blog around family, friends, food, fitness and fun. Who knew there were so many awesome and appropriate F words right?


A Balancing Act


2014
This was sort of a weird year for me. I was settling into my new career and my new EARLY morning wake up calls. I didn't have a computer always at my disposal which made blogging kind of difficult. Being a fitness professional requires different than "normal" hours, you're constantly physically active and you're mentally and emotionally drained since we sort of work as therapists as well. It makes for an exhausting day, so this blog was getting pushed aside for rest and other home/dog chores when I made it home for the day. I still loved it, but I was loosing steam. I didn't get guest bloggers when I was traveling. I didn't have any posts scheduled ahead of time. I just needed a "break" in order to find out my new blogging normal.




2015
I became pregnant and continued my fitness career and blogging about workouts, recipes, life experiences and healthy living, but added a whole new component, bumpdates! While growing Chloe Grace, I wanted to document every feeling, each week and all my emotions. My blog served as the perfect place to do this and it was definitely a hit with my readers! It's turns out that people love to read about pregnancy. I know that I always read when my favorite bloggers became pregnant and posted updates! As my pregnancy went on, my posting became more sparse. I was pretty exhausted from early mornings at work and my creative juices were limited. But Chloe eventually came and then the blog was A LOT about her. That and getting back to my new normal post pregnancy. 




2016
My goal for this year is to continue blogging, but to be more regular on my posting! I hope to blog at least 3 times a week and to get my posts scheduled ahead of time. I know we're only a month in, but so far so good. I plan to keep blogging about life in general. Balancing posts on Chloe, recipes, workouts, funny stories, race recaps and just life updates! I want this to be a place that I continue to enjoy writing and sharing my journey. I hope you all continue to stick around and enjoy this ride of life with me. Juggling everything can be pretty crazy, but after all, isn't life A Balancing Act?

Thanks for joining me on this awesome ride. I can't wait to see what else this blog has in store for me! Stay tuned for something extra special this week. You'll be glad you did!

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