Recap: New Balance Girls Night Out – Shake It Up

As I mentioned last week, I was asked a while ago to host the most recent New Balance Girls Night Out event here in Boston. This event took place on Thursday evening, and I must say, it was incredible.

I arrived at the store at 5, quickly checked out the bikes being set up across the street in Copley Square (more on that in a bit), and headed into the store. Much to my surprise, I was greeted by a massive sign out front and there was my name, smack dab in the middle of it! I may have loved that sign so much that I kind of wanted to take it home, but alas, I knew Will probably wouldn’t be too happy with a 6 foot tall sign taking up residence in our living room. (What a party pooper, huh?)

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Ok, back to the night. Having gone to a few NBGNO events in the past, I knew what to expect. Being the host though, it was a whole different ball game — we were on a pretty tight schedule and I wanted to make sure that the ladies in attendance had the best time possible! I was super excited to have home friends, Boston friends, work friends, and blog friends in attendance, and was ecstatic to be able to share the night with them. I welcomed the girls first and gave them a little bit of a rundown about what NBGNO is all about. If you’re not familiar, you can read about it more in my previous posts here, here, and here. Basically, Girls Night Out is a new kind of ladies night out, one that brings together fun and fitness with the emerging fitness trends today.

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The theme of this particular event was Shake It Up — with the underlying theme of using dance and music to help motivate and shake up your fitness routine. Each GNO event begins with a workout, which always consists of a run as well as an alternative workout. The alternative workout this time may have just been the best one yet — A spin session in Copley Square with the famed Aly Raymer (New Balance Ambassador and lead spin instructor at B/Spoke studios here in Boston). Aly is famous for providing a “dance party on a bike” in her classes, and boy did she deliver at Girls Night Out!

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Aly CRUSHING it in Copley Square 

A group of girls headed out for a run through Beacon Hill, which I heard was amazing but also TOUGH. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to experience Aly’s dance party on a bike though, so I stuck with the spin group for the workout portion. Unfortunately, once we got out there and started getting everyone set up, we realized that we were one bike short. I was already feeling pretty spoiled as the host of the event so I gave my bike to another participant so that she could experience this awesome workout. It was too late for me to leave with the run group, but have no fear, I spent the whole time just dancing around the bikes to the live beats being dropped by the incredible DJ Brek.One. Seriously, whether you were on the bike or off, Copley Square turned into a dance party like no other.

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The girls on the bikes worked it, Aly was absolutely amazing, and the views were incredible. I felt so lucky to be a part of such an awesome event — and judging by the crowd we drew, it looked like a lot of other people wanted to be a part of it too!

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Once the workouts were over, we headed back to the New Balance store to continue with the event. Back in the store, we were hydrated by Essentia Water, the leading alkaline balanced and electrolyte infused water on the market. There were also some delicious cocktails, as well as smoothies from Thirst Juice Co., which is a local smoothie and juice bar here in Boston. The smoothies were out of this world, and I can’t wait to get my butt on down to Thirst sometime soon to try some different flavors!

Once everyone was back and settled from the run and spin workouts, Aly and I got to share a little bit with the crowd about what Shake It Up means to us. Aly spoke about shaking up your fitness routine, as well as your location. She talked to the crowd about traveling somewhere warm during the winter to get out of your winter rut and jumpstart your fitness. I can’t say that’s a bad idea — don’t we all wish we could escape every winter?

When I stood up, I talked about “shaking things up” in terms of trying new things and getting outside of your comfort zone. I briefly told the girls about my recent transformation from someone who is in the weight room 100% of the time, to someone who still enjoys lifting immensely, but who also has begun to enjoy running and spin. Last year, I pushed myself extremely far outside of my comfort zone by signing up to run the Falmouth Road Race, a 7 mile race in August. It terrified me and couldn’t be further from what I was used to doing — that is squatting and deadlifting in a power rack. But I took on the challenge because I knew that I was in a rut and needed to “shake things up”. I ended up loving the race, and honestly would love to run it again this year. I’ve found a new appreciation for running, and more recently for spinning.

It’s been interesting to watch myself go through this transformation. Honestly, if you’d told me 2 years ago that I’d be running and spinning regularly, I would have laughed in  your face. At the time, those things seemed like a waste of time for me, the weight room was the only part of training that was important. Now, I really treasure the variety in my training, and feel better mentally and physically than I have in years.

The important thing, and my main point on Thursday night, was that it’s ok to take yourself out of the little box that you’ve put yourself into. Before, I was a weight lifter. Now, I’m a weight lifting, running, spinning fitness enthusiast, and I’ve found the right balance for me at this time in my life. It’s ok to shake things up, and it’s ok (and encouraged!) to try new things every once in a while.

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This is one of my favorite pics because it makes me giggle — could we look any sassier? 

After our mini-speeches, the night continued with Brek.One spinning the beats, a little bit of dance floor action, and more tasty food, smoothies and cocktails. One other great feature of the night was the Instaprint station that New Balance had set up. Just by using the #NBGNO hashtag, Instagram photos would be printed out immediately in the store, so that you could take them home at the end of the night! This was very cool, also something that I think would be PERFECT at a wedding.

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The night finished up with the Swag “bag” giveaway, which were actually Swag Cups this time! The girls were lucky to head out with an NBGNO shaker cup that was filled with treats such as ear buds, a class pass to B/Spoke studios, a flash drive playlist from the amazing Brek.One, and some other awesome goodies. The ladies of this Girls Night Out lucked out, if you ask me!

Honestly, I can’t express how happy I was to be part of such a wonderful event. I am a huge believer in Girls Night Out and everything it stands for, so to be able to play a part and hopefully help the crowd have a great time that night was incredible. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for the next GNO event, and if you’re in Boston, maybe I’ll see you there! I would also like to give a huge thank you to New Balance for inviting me to host, and also to Aly for providing such a kick ass workout with such amazing energy.

For more pictures, check out the entire gallery HERE. There are some awesome pics!!

Readers: How do you shake up your workout routine? Does music and dance play any role in your fitness program, and how does it motivate you?

Disclaimer: I was compensated for hosting this event, and was also provided items from the New Balance spring and summer collection through my affiliation with Girls Night Out. As always, all opinions are my own. 

Blog Tour 2014

Good Monday Morning everyone!

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend with lots of rest and lots of delicious foods — I know I did! For some reason this was one of those weekends that just seems to go on forever, maybe because I packed so much into it. But anyway, I don’t even mind that it’s Monday right now, and that’s saying something!

Today I’m doing something a little bit different on the blog. I was nominated by Laura DeAngelis of Laura Loves Fitness to participate in my first Blog Tour. (As a side note, please take some time to read Laura’s blog if you don’t already. She is extremely motivational, inspirational, and her kind heart comes through very clearly in her posts.) This “tour” is essentially a set of questions that is rolling out across three blogs each week, where we discuss our writing style and writing process. It’s interesting to me, because I have only very recently started considering myself a writer — despite writing this blog for two years now. So to read about other’s processes helps me to define my own a little bit better, if that even makes any sense.

1. What am I working on? 

Right now I’m not working on anything in particular besides my normal blog posts. I’ve had an idea in my head for a while about a new series I want to start, but I really just need to sit down and really hash out how I want to do it. My goal is to start a “Strength Is…” series, where I highlight and feature different people who are all strong in their own way. I have a few ideas about directions I want to take it, but haven’t done anything concrete yet as far as writing goes. So I guess that’s not really what I’m working on, but more what I’m thinking about, but hopefully I’ll actually start working on it soon. 🙂

2. How does my work differ from others of it’s genre?

Lately I’ve actually been fortunate to hear from some of my readers about why they enjoy my blog. It always makes my day when someone tells me that they read my blog, let alone that they enjoy specific things about my particular corner of the internet! I was actually told by a couple of people this weekend that they really appreciate that I tend to highlight strength and health over skinniness and/or aesthetics. I think that is the biggest thing that sets me apart from a lot of health/fitness bloggers — of course we all want to look good, but I think that there are far more important things to focus most of your attention on. I don’t ever want this to turn into a blog that’s just about telling people how to look good, rather I want my focus to be about making my readers feel good in the body that they have now. I Train Therefore I Eat isn’t just about macronutrients and calories burned, it’s also about enjoying the life that we have, and doing whatever we can to make ourselves the best that we can be.

3. Why do I write what I do? 

I think that there are so many blogs, websites, and other media that focus on how we look, how many pounds we can lose, or just how skinny we can get. Especially as a woman, we are bombarded with programs and “specialists” telling us how to “get rid of that belly fat before summer!” or “lose that winter weight!”, that it becomes completely overwhelming. I write my blog so that I can hopefully be a refreshing respite from all of that — yes, as I said before, we all want to look good, but that’s not the only important thing. I see my blog as a place where people can hopefully become motivated to move a little more, eat a little better, and enjoy the whole process of it. I also have such a passion for strength training, especially when it comes to females, that I want to be able to show those who may be afraid of the weights that building strength really is an amazing thing, and that it’s not just “for the boys”. Ladies can lift too, darn it!

4. How does my writing process work? 

Honestly, I find inspiration everywhere. I see things in the gym, on the train, in the grocery store, at work, and anywhere else you can think of. Sometimes my inspiration comes out of rage (rant posts can be fun!), and sometimes it comes out of curiosity (hello, rock climbing!), and sometimes it’s just pure old science (I’m most definitely a nerd). The funny thing that I’ve noticed lately though, is that I tend to do my best writing away from my computer. Lately I’ve been carrying around a tiny little notebook everywhere I go –because blog ideas really do come to me at the most random times– and I jot ideas down as they come to me.  Sometimes I’ll start just writing a few ideas down, and before I know it I basically have my next two blog posts scribbled over the pages. I can sit in front of a blank computer screen for hours and not have anything to say, but put a pen and paper in front of me and the ideas start streaming out. It’s kind of ironic, since my writing platform exists because of computers, but oh well!

Who’s next..

Unfortunately, many bloggers that I reached out to let me know that they just have too much on their plate right now — and I totally understand that feeling!  No judgement here, as my schedule has left me feeling less than sane lately.  But hey, that’s ok! I do have one amazing blogger for you who will continue the tour next week, and that blogger is…

Athena! Athena blogs over at Fitness and Feta, and she is absolutely, hands down one of my favorite bloggers. She is extremely honest and down to earth, and similar to myself is not all about just helping you get skinny. . Athena works as a wellness director and group fitness instructor, and I would love to go to one of her classes sometimes! Along with fitness info and great workouts, Athena shares some delicious recipes — I can always count on her when I have a family function coming up and am not sure what to bring.

Since I was only able to secure one blogger to carry on the tour, I’m looking for two more! Please let me know in the comments below if you would like to continue the blog tour next Monday, and I’ll send you the details. Maybe it’s my nerdy side coming out, but I think hearing about people’s how and why of writing is really interesting. 🙂

ETA: We have a new blogger who will be continuing the Blog Tour! Alyssa, who blogs over at Home Field Fitness will be carrying on the tour with Athena next Monday. Alyssa is a personal trainer who has a special place in my heart because she started out her education/career path in athletic training (what I do!). Check out her blog for some great health, fitness and nutrition info — and keep your eyes peeled for her Blog Tour post next Monday!

Have a wonderful week, everyone!  

Readers: If you blog, where do you draw your inspiration from? Do you find that you write better at the computer or with pen/paper? Please let me know below if you’re interested in continuing this blog tour next week! 

2013 Recap: The Best of I Train Therefore I Eat

I can’t believe that in a couple of days, it’ll be 2014. This year absolutely flew by, although I say that every year I suppose. It feels like time this year was just a little bit quicker than normal though. Maybe it’s because it was a memorable year (to say the least), maybe it’s because I realized I’m nowhere close to being invincible (see: this incident and this incident), maybe it’s just because that’s what happens as you get older. Whatever the reason, and whether we like it or not, 2013 is quietly exiting, and 2014 is knocking at the door.

This past year was a big one in my life and on the blog. I had some posts that got a lot of attention, and some that just meant a lot to me personally. Today, I just want to recap some of my most successful (most viewed) posts of the year, and also some of my personal favorites, just in case you missed them. Later this week I’ll be back with a recap of last years goals and my new ones moving forward, because tracking progress is always fun, no?

Any-hoo, I present to you my year in blogging, 2013. Enjoy!

The 5 Most Popular Posts of 2013:

1. Athletic Training: Why I Love My Job – This was absolutely my most popular post of the year — and since I wrote it last January, I guess I peaked early in 2013? 🙂  This post circulated very well on social media, and I was very humbled by the response from other ATCs. I guess when you love what you do, it’s easy to express it well, huh?

2. The Lean Physique And Why It’s Dangerous – This was another post that I was very proud of. Being ultra lean isn’t always the healthiest or most realistic goal for people, and trying to attain that can be downright dangerous.

3. Top 5 Areas That You’re Probably Not Foam Rolling – I should probably do another piece on foam rolling, because there are some other techniques I didn’t cover in this post. I’m glad there’s such an interest in the topic though, I really do believe that it’s one of the most important parts of a fitness program!

4. A Stadium Workout – Apparently people want to be told what to do when they go to workout at a stadium. This is just one example of workouts you can do, but the possibilities are pretty endless!

5. Fitness Friday: How To Use Battling Ropes – One of my other favorite pieces of workout equipment, this is something that I think every gym should have. Relatively inexpensive, you can get a lot of bang for your buck with these, and they are a great tool to add something new into a circuit or conditioning day!

My Favorite Posts of 2013:

Along with the top two above, there are a handful of posts that I am especially fond of, whether they be recapping a personal experience, motivational, or just random thoughts. These posts may not always get the most attention, but they mean a lot to me and are important to my little corner of the blogosphere!

1. Moving And Healing – The Boston Marathon bombing was an event that I’ll never forget, and although we’ve moved on with our normal lives, we are all changed forever, at least a little bit. Healing continues, figuratively and very literally for some, and although it’s important to move on, it’s just as important to remember.

2. A Change In Perspective – Sometimes, all you need is a little change in perspective. Find something you can love and look forward to, and exercising becomes less of a chore.

3. 4 Tips To Improve Your Pullups – because whether you believe it or not, you can do pull ups. Yes, you. Just follow these tips, and work work work!

4. Healthy Living? I’m Not So Sure Anymore – I decided to take a step back from the Healthy Living Blog world this year, and even if it cost me a few readers, I’m ok with that. I still stand behind every word in this post.

5. My Name is Stephanie, and I’m a Quitter. – I’m including this one because I think it’s important for people to know that there is no one diet plan that is right for everyone. I enjoyed IF, but failed miserably at Carb Backloading. Ah well, live and learn, right?

6. Superman Walks: Part One and Part Two – Thomas Mills is such an inspirational man, I almost feel like I should post a link to this every day so that everyone can read his story!

7. The Scale is Not Your Friend – I’m not sure that the battle between women and their scales will ever end, but this was one little piece to try to stop the nonsense. The scale doesn’t matter, but you do!

8. The Great Leggings As Pants Debate – are they or aren’t they? For the record, I think they are, and I wear them proudly.

Hopefully in the coming year, I can continue writing posts that connect me to people like you, and I can continue to motivate people to lead healthier, happier lives. 2013, you were great, but it’s time to move on. Happy New Year everyone! 

A Mini Blog Break

:::Radio Silence:::

Sorry for the blog silence (and almost Twitter silence too) this week! I’m pretty sure the exact same thing happened right around the same time last year. It’s fall preseason for NCAA athletics, and any ATCs out there know exactly what I’m saying when I tell you it’s almost physically impossible for me to write anything meaningful this week.

My brain is mush.

To all of my fellow ATCs, good luck with preseason yourselves, we’re all in this together!

As for the rest of you, I’ll be back next week, I promise, and hopefully even with my brain intact.

I’ll leave you with this gem:

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Random Monday Thoughts

I don’t really have anything today that would make up a full post, but I just wanted to put a couple of thoughts out there.  Besides, I wouldn’t want to make you read anything too detailed or heavy when you’re trying so hard to recover from your St. Patricks Day shenanigans yesterday (Yes, you there with the raging hangover that all of your co-workers are pretending they don’t notice, I’m talking to you).

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Random Monday Thought #1:  I want to say a HUGE thank you for the response I got on my last post. I always love my readers, but I especially love it when we get such a good conversation going, especially about such an important topic. Everyone had excellent, thoughtful comments, and I’m glad that many of you seem to agree with my concerns about the HLB world. When I published that post, I tweeted it directly at Healthy Living Blogs themselves because I wanted to make sure they got to read it, in the hopes that it would draw some sort of response. You would think that the people who essentially own the HLB brand would be happy to address my concerns, and maybe even offer some answers to the questions I proposed. (Or at the very least, a cookie-cutter “we’re sorry you feel that way” type of reply). But no response yet, which to me just seems irresponsible. Maybe they want the HLB title to be associated with disordered eating and other unhealthy practices? I’m not sure, but I’m annoyed.

icanthearyouIgnoring the problem won’t make it go away. 

Random Monday Thought #2: I’m still ridiculously sore from my lift on Friday. So sore I’ve been walking like a cowboy all weekend, I call it my cowboy strut. After mangling my finger and being under no-sweating orders from my doctor for 2 weeks, I more than ready to go when I hit the weight room last week. Never mind that the finger splint I’m still in means that my grip is severely decreased, so I’m pretty much limited to back-loaded barbell stuff for now (Go ahead, try overhand-gripping a loaded barbell or heavy dumbbells without your index fingers. Not so easy, is it?) So Friday I finally got my butt back in the weight room, and to my delight, only lost 10 lb off my back squat after nearly 3 weeks off. Now though? I feel as though I’ve ripped every muscle from my pelvis. Me thinks I jumped in with a little too much too soon. Ah well, live and learn, right?

Random Monday Thought #3: In the past, I’ve talked about girls nights I have with a group of friends about once every  month. We pick a theme, pick someone to host, and then all make something (food or drink) according to the theme. Honestly, although we all have the best intentions, we often end up with a mix of bread, cheese, sugar, and wine, because that’s just the way it goes. (And there’s totally nothing wrong with that). We had one of these dinners this past weekend, and my lovely friend decided to make the theme Rules on Rules on Rules. Essentially, there was no sugar, butter, or flour allowed. And you know what? I really think it turned out to be our best dinner yet. We had vegetable spring rolls, spaghetti squash/black bean tacos, goat cheese stuffed dates, and risotto, and it was all absolutely delicious. Proof that get togethers don’t always have to be about junk food and alcohol, and that healthy eating can still be fun, creative, and delicious!

That is all for now! Enjoy your monday, and please, no napping at your desk. It’s not attractive. Especially if you’re still covered in green glitter and fake tattoos from your attempt at being Irish yesterday.

someecards.com - I'm respectfully devoting the day after St. Patrick's Day to eating Lucky Charms in my underwear

Would you expect the heads of HLB to respond to my last post? Have you ever gone back to the gym too hard too soon after an injury? Do you have any fun traditions with friends that involve food? 

Healthy Living? I’m Not So Sure Anymore

This post might get me in trouble in the blogging world. But I’ve been thinking about it for a while, so I have to get it out there.

I’m a part of a community called Healthy Living Blogs, which, by definition, should include blogs pertaining to all aspects of healthy living: nutrition, fitness, weight lifting, wellness, etc. While yes, there are many different types of blogs under the HLB umbrella, it seems that there is a certain (negative) perception about what an HLB is. And unfortunately,  many HLB blogs tend to live up (or down?) to that perception.

While there are many HLBs out there that promote true fitness, wellness, and nutrition, there seem to be just as many that promote much less healthy practices. It seems to me that the blogging world is full of disordered eating and other unhealthy practices, and that many readers look up to and even emulate these lifestyles.

There are countless blogs where people literally talk about eating “bird food”, or whose daily food consumption consists of raw veggies, PB2, and protein powder “pudding” (what the heck is that anyway?).  There are blogs out there with emaciated girls posting multiple pictures of themselves and their limited food daily, leading their readers to believe that that’s what healthy living looks like. There are bloggers who flood their Instagram feed with pictures of their emaciated bodies, and the worst part is the commenters who often say things like “I wish I had legs as skinny as yours!”  Some blogs make me cringe to click through their pages, seeming more like “pro-anorexia” blogs than promoters of healthy living.

And it’s not just one or two blogs that I’ve noticed with this same sort of message. There are a lot of them. Of course, there are some amazing Healthy Living Blogs out there, those that promote true fitness, nutrition, and overall health. But chatter around the internet (which is a smaller place than people think) leads me to believe that these people – myself included –  are the outliers in the HLB community. Or at least that is the perception. There is a lot of talk about what people think HLB’s are, and most of it is not positive.

So my question is this: Should I not be associated with HLBs? Is calling this a Healthy Living Blog tarnishing my reputation before I even write anything? I sure as heck don’t want to be associated with blogs that are promoting extremely unhealthy images and ideas under the guise of being healthy. I don’t want to be a part of something that can be triggering for young readers who may be struggling with disordered eating themselves. I don’t want to be a part of something that could potentially push a young, impressionable reader over the edge into a world of under-eating, over-exercising, and overall unhealthy practices.

What I do want is to reach people of all shapes and sizes, provide a little motivation, inspiration, and information, and help people to become better versions of themselves.  My blog is, as far as I’m concerned, about healthy living. Fitness, strength training, nutrition, and general wellness are all under the broad category of healthy living, are they not? But while I don’t want to be associated with the practices I listed above, I don’t want to completely get away from the HLB world either. For every reader who falls into the unhealthy-healthy-living trap, there has got to be one who is looking for real, true information. Instead of backing away from the HLB community, is it unrealistic to think that the perception of HLBs can be changed? If enough truly healthy bloggers emerge and speak up against those that are promoting unhealthy practices, maybe the HLB community can be seen as a truly inspirational group of bloggers, and not just a bunch of girls who compete to see who can eat less and workout more. 

Health is not about having unnaturally stick thin legs and hands that look too big on your arms. Healthy living is not about consuming zero carbs and weird concoctions made from protein powder and cottage cheese. Healthy eating does not mean fooling naive readers who believe everything they read on the internet, and leading them to believe that they too should be at a dangerously low body fat percentage. Health is not subsisting on dangerously low calorie levels each day while using food and camera trickery to make it look like you’re eating all day, every day, yet still maintaining an 80 lb frame.

These are things that are dangerous to readers who feel that whatever they’re doing is not good enough, because they can’t ever get their legs to be “that thin”. These are things that promote extremely unhealthy lifestyles, yet they’re proudly promoted by the HLB community. I guess my message here is to readers, bloggers, and the HLB world as a whole. When did those sort of blogs become the Healthy Living norm? And what can we do to change it?  If this gets me in trouble, and HLB wants me to take the badge off my blog, than so be it. But I think it’s an important question to put out there. When did healthy living become less about being healthy and more about being (dangerously) thin?

I Train Therefore I Eat Turns One!

Today, my friends, is a very important day.

Today is the day that I Train Therefore I Eat turns 1 year old! That’s right, it’s my blogiversary.

Funny-Birthday-Dog

My very first post was exactly one year from today, and it’s pretty amazing to see how far this little blog has come in just one year. I started out pretty sure that no one would read it, afterall, aren’t there thousands of healthy living/fitness/nutrition blogs out there? But I started it anyway, mostly as a place to get all of these crazy thoughts out of my head. And if others chose to read it? Well that was just a bonus.

The luckiest day on this blog happened in April, however, and that’s when this thing really started to kick into a higher gear. On April 15th, I was featured on the front page of WordPress.com as a “freshly pressed” blog. The exposure that created was a turning point in my blog, and I’m still very grateful to the editors at WordPress for somehow choosing me, and helping a whole new group of people to find my blog that day.

But far beyond that day in April, my readership has continued to expand, and for that I am thankful. In just one short year, this blog has grown in ways I never imagined. Who would have thought that I could have a blog that would be read by people all over the world? Who would have thought that I would get the chance to meet many other incredible bloggers, and have the chance to connect with so many amazing people (you)?

To celebrate this 1 year bloggy birthday, I thought today I would link you all up to some of my favorite posts from the past year of blogging. Trying to choose a handful of my favorites from 133 posts is tough, but there are definitely a few that stand out in my mind. Check them out if you’re a newer follower, as some of these are from way back when I’m pretty sure the only person reading was my mom. (Hi Mom!)

The Truth About Fat (And Part 2 of that post here)

Strength is Beautiful

My Battle With Womens Magazines

Motivation Monday and the Marathon

Strong For A Girl

No Bake Granola Bars 

Never Will I Ever

Work OutSide Wednesday

Whats In A Name 

Building A Home Gym On A Budget (And Part 2)

So where do we go from here?

This year, I’ve got some big plans for this blog. Here, in no particular order, are the ideas that I’ve been tossing around for quite some time now:

  • Self Hosting: Is it worth it? Do I need to be self hosted for people to take me more seriously or can I stick with this for now? I’m still completely on the fence about this one, so who knows what I’ll end up doing.
  • Blog Make Over: I am in desperate need of a makeover, and I’ve just been delaying the inevitable. I would love to pay to get a professionally done logo/header, but I haven’t come up with a concept for that yet. Other than that, I plan on redoing my About Me page very soon, as well as fixing up some of my other pages, because right now it’s all kind of in shambles. Lets be honest. I’ve been neglectful.
  • Personal Food Challenge: I’ve had a big idea swirling in my head for a while now. I wont give details until I’m ready to start, but lets just say it’s going to be a long term nutrition experiment on my part. It’ll be a series of posts, spaced out over a few months, in which I examine (and experience) different nutritional styles. It’ll be tough, but I think I’m ready for the challenge. Details soon!
  • More More More! I’m ready for a new year, with new ideas and new challenges. I would love to start incorporating more reader questions into my posts, because part of what I love so much about blogging is the interaction with you, my readers, and fellow bloggers. I also would like to start including some new topics into the blog, so that hopefully I can keep you interested enough to keep reading for another year.  I’m considering another Summer Fitness Challenge, but I’ll need a little more organization than last year if that’s going to go over well.

Finally, I just want to say a BIG Thank You to everyone who reads my blog. I write for people to read it, so without you there would be no blog. I appreciate each and every comment and question I receive, both on the blog and through email, so keep them coming! My only hope moving forward is to share a little insight with those who are seeking it, a little motivation to those who need it, and a little bit of laughter for everyone.  If I accomplish that for even a few people, than that’s a success. (Also world domination. But that can come later) 😉

So thank you, thank you for reading along and joining me on my silly blog journey! What was your favorite post this year? Are there any topics you’re dying to read about? Fellow bloggers, is it worth it for me to switch to self hosting, and is it necessary?