5 Improvements I’m Making on my Daily Routine

5 Improvements I’m Making on my Daily Routine

My first post of this year consisted of nine goals I had for myself for this year. The number one goal on that list is to take better care of myself, which is something I’ve been focusing on a lot lately. Self care is so important; without it you won’t be performing at your best in work or school, or in life period. I always feel at the top of my game after a day of self care. It doesn’t even have to be a day; take at least an hour for yourself a day to help you feel refreshed and rejuvenated.

In the process of taking better care of myself, I’ve added a few new steps to my daily routine to see what fits in with my lifestyle. Here are five that I’ve found aid me immensely throughout the day, week, and so on:

One // Taking better care of my skin.

In my previous blog post, I discussed how I’ve finally found a skin care routine that works for me. Every night I set aside a half hour to floss, brush, and do my brand new routine. I’ve discovered that if I use certain products or cake on makeup multiple days in a row, my skin likes to retaliate and break out. It’s totally okay to give your skin a break and only throw on some mascara and lip gloss for a day at the office.

Two // Taking the time to eat breakfast

There’s no denying how much I love to sleep and how I will soak up every last ounce of it I can get. That being said, I wouldn’t always eat breakfast before leaving for work. When I realized just how much skipping breakfast was affecting me. This Reader’s Digest article explains the negative effects of not eating breakfast on a daily basis.

Three // Ensuring I take small “brain breaks” throughout the day

The older I get, the more I find it difficult to sit or stay focused for long periods of time.  I always ensure that I allow myself to get up and take a brisk walk around the office to keep semi-active throughout the day, and give myself a break from staring at my computer. Also, during lunch I’ll bring a book or work on my blog to take my mind off of work for a bit.

Four // Reading before bed instead of checking my socials

I’ve always been a big reader, but during my college years, I found little to no time to read between coursework, sorority events, dance team and work. I decided to try to dedicate at least 30 minutes to read for enjoyment before bed – it didn’t always happen. However, in the last few years, I have discovered that I get a much better night’s sleep if I read rather than checking social media.

Five // Going to bed at a decent time

Every night (save for some weekends), I’m in bed by 9pm. I know this makes me sound like a grandma, but I am super cranky if I don’t get enough sleep. Every morning I wake up at 4:30am preceding my hour commute to work so going to bed at a decent time in order to get the recommended 7-8 hours is crucial for me.

What are some things you do to improve your daily routine? Leave a comment below, I’d love to hear from you!

-K.

50 Ways to Practice Self Care

50 Ways to Practice Self Care

Self love is a huge buzzword lately. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I recently shared a post stating that I have always struggled with it. Once I reflected a bit on my post and thoughts about the topic, I really started to think about what things I currently do and what I could do to aid with my practice. I consulted some of my closest friends on ways that they cope with the bad days, and practice self care. Creating self love takes time, but practicing everyday helps to improve it little by little.

Here are 50 ways that my friends and I practice self care:

  1. Take a bubble bath
  2. Read a book
  3. Treat yourself to a mani/pedi
  4. Yoga
  5. Meditation
  6. Turn on some of your favorite music and have a solo dance party (or with your friends if you so choose)
  7. Light one of your favorite scented candles
  8. Unplug for at least an hour
  9. Go for a walk or run
  10. Do a hair or face mask (or both!)
  11. Splurge on that item you’ve been eye-ing to help amp up your wardrobe
  12. Ask for help from friends and family
  13. Write out your thoughts and feelings
  14. Focus your energy into a workout
  15. Clean and organize
  16. Watch one of your favorite movies
  17. Have a glass of wine
  18. Cuddle with your pet or a loved one
  19. Laugh – put on one of your favorite comedy movies or tv shows
  20. Stop comparing yourself to others
  21. Keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water
  22. Forgive yourself
  23. Remove toxic people from your life
  24. Go on an adventure to a place you’ve always wanted to visit
  25. Stop making excuses
  26. Search for the positives in every situation, regardless of how hard that may be
  27. Take an online (or in-person, if you prefer) class to expand your knowledge on a topic
  28. Allow yourself to feel whatever it is you may be feeling, even cry if you need to
  29. Pray if it fits your beliefs
  30. Take a nap
  31. Indulge in a sweet treat
  32. Plan a girls’ night out with your best friends
  33. Eat healthy
  34. Get creative and try your hand at a Pinterest craft
  35. Have a night in with your SO
  36. Check an item off of your to do list that you’ve been avoiding
  37. Try something new be it an activity, recipe or restaurant
  38. Practice gratitude
  39. Bring the outdoors indoors and buy yourself some flowers or a house plant
  40. Get a massage
  41. Watch the sunset
  42. Recite positive affirmations to yourself
  43. Change up your look with a new hairdo or applying your makeup differently
  44. Play a relaxation Pandora station
  45. Cook a meal featuring your favorite comfort foods
  46. Be mindful
  47. Call a loved one you haven’t spoken to in a while
  48. Stop feeling guilty for taking some time for yourself
  49. Switch things up by creating a new routine
  50. Remember that you’re doing the best you can, and focus on your progress

 

Do you have some self care tips that didn’t make the list? Leave a comment below!

-K.

Keeping It Healthy: Snack Options

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Do you want to lead a healthier lifestyle? Do you have a problem succumbing to your unrelenting sweet tooth? Well keep on reading because I have a list of healthy and delicious snacks that’ll help kick that sweet tooth and unhealthy cravings to the curb! As I mentioned in my first post of the year, I’m trying to live a healthier lifestyle, and one way I’m doing that is swapping out my Cheetos and Sweettarts for some healthier options. So, without further ado, here are some healthy snacks I’ve been eating to curb my cravings!

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Roasted or lightly salted almonds

Clementines

Luna protein bar — my favorite is the chocolate chip cookie dough; it tastes like a candy bar!

RX Bars

Cliff Crunch Granola Bars — my favorite is the chocolate peanut butter

Organic tortilla chips & guacamole — Wholly Guacamole makes 100 calorie containers to take on the go. It’s perfect for midday snack at the office!

Apple slices & peanut butter

Fresh fruit salad — berries, pineapple, and watermelon are a few of my favorites

Greek yogurt — add a little crunch with some homemade granola

Roasted chick peas — I’ve actually started craving these more than chips these days

Graham crackers & peanut butter

Carrots, celery & ranch — to make this healthier, buy a Ranch dry mix packet & mix it with 8 oz. of plain Greek yogurt

Brown rice triscuits & babybell cheese

String mozzarella cheese

Dehydrated fruit rings, specifically apple rings

Haagen-Daas Raspberry Sorbet — okay, so maybe this isn’t necessarily a healthy snack, but I like to talk myself into believing it is!

Leave a comment below with some of your favorite healthy snacks & recipes. I’d love to try some new ones!

-K.

Ch-ch-ch-changes

Ch-ch-ch-changes

In a recent post, I briefly stated that I was making a number of changes in my life. My goal is to live a more positive, healthy, happy life by making small changes now to help me achieve bigger goals and chase bigger dreams.

Working a desk job, I don’t have much ability to be active throughout the day. After being able to be active while at school (walking across campus to class, dance practices, free gym access, etc), I realized I could not maintain my old habits. With the help of my boyfriend Ryan, I’ve devised a plan consisting of a few lifestyle changes in order to help me stay in shape and, ultimately live a more positive and happy life.

  • My FitBit is my new best friend. For my birthday a few weeks ago, Ryan bought me a FitBit Alta per my request.  While I have yet to reach my daily goal of 10,000 steps, it has motivated me to get up and get moving. At work I tend to take the long route when walking to the water fountain, bathroom and my colleagues offices in order to get the most out of my steps. It also helps a lot with tracking my calorie intake on the app; it’s free and downloads to your phone while activating your FitBit after purchase.
  • Absolutely no fast food. Ryan and I decided to use the buddy system with this one. By cutting out all fast food, we are cutting out the option of taking the easy way out when it comes to lunch breaks. While I tend crave McDonald’s fries and tacos from Taco Bell, I’m breaking the habit by choosing healthier snack options such as Skinny Pop and baked chips. I also allow myself the occasional bit of Dove dark chocolate and chocolate milk when my sweet tooth is acting up.
  • Limit caffeine/drinking your calories. We also came up with the idea of limiting my caffeine intake to 2-3 times a week since I have a serious coffee and Coca~Cola addiction. Something that’s really helping me drink more water is the ability to track your water intake daily on the FitBit app. I’ve also been turning to sparkling water to help get the carbonation I often crave from pop.
  • Thinking positive thoughts. In a previous post I discussed my desire to live an overall more positive life and discussed the various ways I was doing so. You can check out that post here.
  • Make a daily routine. Right now I’m still trying to get the hang of my new sleeping schedule, but I have a sort-of routine that I’ve been sticking to as of late. The whole point of it for me, personally is to make sure I achieved all I needed to in the day.

What do you do to make sure you stick to your goals? Also, anyone with tips to quit biting your nail pleaseeee comment because that is my next goal.

-K

These are a few of my favorite things

Happy Thursday!

This past month or so I’ve made a few discoveries that have changed my life for the better. In fact, I have grown pretty obsessed with these items. So much so that I decided that I just needed to share them with y’all.

  • Lululemon’s Flow & Go Crop: Upon retiring a pair of Victoria’s Secret crop leggings, and since I’ve been doing really well with sticking to my current workout routine for the second time in my life, I decided to purchase my second pair of Lulu leggings in the color Alberta Lake (teal). They’re a super comfy fit and the fabric hugs your body in all of the right places. Though I have heard some mixed reviews, I’ve only worn them for running errands and one HIIT workout and have yet to have an issue.
  • Tropical Smoothie Café: Okay, so I know I’ve posted about it before, but I have not tasted anything nearly as fantastic as their  açaí berry boost smoothie. If you love super fruits as much as I do, then you’ll love this smoothie! Warning: highly addictive and mind the seeds as they tend to get stuck in your teeth.
  • Shine texts: While recently scrolling through my Facebook feed, I noticed a link to Shine which sends you daily tips for self-fulfillment every morning around 8:30 a.m. Complete with gifs, the texts really help start your day off on the right foot and help you maintain a positive mindset. Check it out for yourself and sign up here!
  • Alex and Ani spoon ring: my dear friend (and fellow blogger) Bri bought me the lotus ring for graduation and I am absolutely obsessed with it! You can follow Bri’s blog here!
  • Kayla Itsines’s BBG Program: For a while I’ve struggled finding a good workout program that really helped me get into shape and that fit into my hectic schedule. With the help of social media and a friend, I discovered Kayla Itsines’s BBG Program; a 12-week program that resembles that of a HIIT workout that can be done in the comfort of your own home. I’m only in the middle of my second full week on the program and I’m already seeing results!

Let me know what y’all are up to lately and what you’re obsessed with at the moment. I’d also love to hear your feedback if you guys have tried any of my latest obsessions!

-K

Top Fitness Blogs

Top Fitness Blogs

Hey there! As previously mentioned, I’ve decided to make a few lifestyle changes as a means to live a healthier life. I began following a wide range of health, fitness, and nutrition blogs a few months ago and decided to share a number of my absolute favorites with y’all.

FitSugar// Is there anything PopSugar can’t do? From pop culture to fashion to food, and, my personal favorite, fitness, they have it all. If I only have a short period of time to read, Fitsugar is my go-to site for anything and everything.

The Fashionably Fit// This UK-based blog combines fashion and fitness into one of the most aesthetically pleasing layouts I’ve ever laid my eyes on. Recipes, gym wear, everyday fashion, Jidy provides it all!

Yoga by Candace// I absolutely love yoga so it’s quite fitting that I follow a blog about it. Candace also provides recipes, clothing shops, and 30-day programs for FREE! Did I mention that she also has her own app to take with you on the go?

Lululemon Blog// I just love Lululemon and everything they do. Not only do they have fabulous articles, but they also have great podcasts.

Namasté!

-K

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