Thursday, August 21, 2014

What motivates you?

Is it the feeling you get when you're done, how your clothes feel or knowing you're adding years to your life?

Would you feel extra motivated if you knew you'd lose money skipping a workout or not getting in all your veggies? 

 I was intrigued when I read about a new app called Pact.  When you fulfill your 'pact', you're rewarded with money that comes from people who fail to honor their pact.  I was curious about how everything worked so I decided test it out.  After you download the free Pact app, you need to link it to your PayPal account or a credit card.  You then set your goals such as the number of times a week you want to exercise or eat healthy.   Once you decide what you're going to focus on, you decide the penalty you are willing to pay if you don't keep up your 'pact'.  The minimum penalty is $5.
When all said and done, my biggest question was how the app would know if I was exercising or eating healthy.  Most of the tracking is done via other apps such as My Fitness Pal, fitness tracking apps, including Jawbone UP, FitBit Flex, RunKeeper, and MapMyFitness.  

When it comes to exercising, I'm not personally motivated by money but rather how I look and feel.  We all have our own drivers to why we do things.  If money is a factor is you getting healthier then this seems like the perfect APP.  Pact has said that their app has helped their members have hit 92% of their goals resulting in over 5 million healthy activities.   

Anything that helps people get healthier is a win in my books.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Strawberry Flank Steak Salad

The first day of school has approached and I'm having such emotions- happy, sad, disbelief and nervous.  As a mom its difficult to admit that I'm ready for school to begin.  I love my children with all my heart but the lack of routine, them being at each others throats is driving me crazy!  I hate being the mom who always seems short with their kids and I'm ready to get back to the mom who's full of patience.  

By 3:00pm, I'm so excited to see my girl get off the bus to hear what her day has been like.  Our conversation usually lasts for only 10 minutes during the warmer months until she's ready to run outside to play with her sister and friends.  I've been lucky to still have our family dinners but know these will soon changes too.  Our after school activities have already started to leave our house pretty busy at night.  Instead of fussing over an elaborate dinner during these hectic times, I'd much rather spend the time with my family.  
{Enter the Perfect Meal}

I love this summer salad because it's so versatile and can be made ahead of time or on the run.

Strawberry Salad with Spinach, Feta and Flank Steak

Yields 4 Servings @ 365 calories per serving

8 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
4 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
3 tsp. dry mustard
2 tsp. poppy seeds
8 cups fresh baby spinach
3 cup sliced strawberries
1 green onion, finely chopped
1 tsp. ground black pepper
4 Tbsp. crumbled feta cheese
8 tsp. sliced raw almonds
12 oz. flank steak
Juice from 1 Lime

1. Preheat oven broiler or grill.
2. Marinate flank steak in lime juice, salt and pepper. Do this right on the paper the steak comes wrapped in for easy clean up.
3. Place on broiler pan and cook, turning once until medium rare, about 4 to 5 minutes per side.
4. Remove to a cutting board to rest.
5. Combine oil, vinegar, mustard, and poppy seeds in a small bowl; whisk to blend. Set aside.
6. Combine spinach, strawberries, and green onion in a large serving bowl; mix well.
7. Slice steak
8. Drizzle salad with dressing. Season with pepper; toss gently to blend.
9. Top with cheese and almonds.

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Danger of Comparison

A couple of days ago I posted a quote on Facebook that seemed to strike a cord with a lot of women.

It got me thinking.... 
Instead of feeling confident about where we are, why do we doubt ourselves?
So many of us are exposed to photos 24/7 due to Instagram, TimeHop and Facebook.  When I'm having a great day, these photos are wonderful to look at but when I'm having a bad day looking at the photos makes me feel like I'm not good enough.

 Am I failing as a mother because part of me is excited for them to go back to school?  
Have I done something wrong that my girls are yelling at each other all day? 
Am I a less than par wife because I don't get butterflies every time my husband walks through the door?

It's easy to look at people and assume they have the perfect life- happy Facebook photos, smiling kiddos, and always wonderful things to say about their significant other.  I will admit that I have gotten sucked into these 'perfect' pictures and started questioning if I was doing something wrong.  After posting this quote and my feelings, I was amazed by how many other women felt the same way. I realized that I'm not alone.

Most of us have internal struggles, rough moments with their kids and ups and downs in their personal life. We need to stop comparing ourselves to how others appear from social media.  A photo can be retaken hundreds of times before the perfect one is posted, most kids will smile every time someone takes their photo even if they're halfway through a tantrum and a couple smiling in their selfie is probably because they're enjoying some kid free time.

The next time you start comparing your life to other based on photos, stop and take a look at the photos you've posted.  You'll see love, fun times and the awesome life you're creating for yourself. 
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