I challenge you, 2015!

Like many, I LOVE fitness challenges because they help encourage me to get up and out the door. Honestly, I feel like most of the time my BMOREtoned gals or Tone It Up community work as my alarm clock, coach and cheerleader!

Being January (the time when everyone is looking to make changes) there are lots of fun fitness challenges popping up – my friend Jami did a great Challenge Roundup over on BMOREtoned!

tone-it-up-love-your-body-series-100-by-v-day-100 I’ve done it for a few years and I’m excited to do the Tone It Up Love Your Body challenge again this year. It’s always a great way to get new workouts, try new healthy recipes and all-over just love yourself more! This challenge lasts for 6 weeks (ending with Valentine’s Day) and has daily/weekly challenges to help you stay engaged. Also, we have an overall goal of completely 100 miles (run/walk/bike/etc.) by the end. Running isn’t my strong suit, so I love this because it pushes me to get out there!

I’ve decided to go-big-or-go-home this year…and I’m doing two challenges! I’m also joining the Map My Fitness Workout Games! For the games, you are challenged to log or record at least 30 workouts, each 20 minutes or longer, until February 8! I typically use Map My Fitness for running – by having my phone on me while I’m running, I can find out my approximate pace, distance and elevation. This challenge will definitely push me to run more, but there’s also an opportunity to log my strength training workouts with them. It’s a great way to keep track of what I’m doing. This fits in perfectly with my TIU challenge because I can log those workouts too. I’ve backlogged a few from December, and I’m looking forward to keeping track of my workouts over the next month!

mapymyfitness workout games | sunshine & the bear

The new year presents an awesome opportunity. Fitness challenges present the perfect chance for me/you/anyone to get out there do it!

Who wants to join me?! 

 

Love your life in 2015!

Happy New Year!

Let’s take a moment…right now, we have a great opportunity to reflect and look forward! It’s a new chapter in your book – you know all the things coming will somehow build on what’s already happened but you also get to start fresh and experience all new things!

dont live the same life quote

With a new year comes the tradition of resolutions. I’ve learned through trial and error that the important thing when it comes to resolutions (and goals in general) is to fight the urge to make them lofty and unattainable. Goals are wonderful…but only if they are smart, motivating and attainable! Don’t get me wrong, I also would like to add Chris Evans to my list, if that was plausible…

You need direction, focus and motivation to change. And let’s not forget that change is rarely the flip of a switch…it comes with WORK. You need to stick with it! I read a quote that always stuck with me – “The road to success is always under construction.” In other words, even with a goal in mind you’re bound to hit a few road blocks or detours. If you can work toward expecting it, you can be prepared to make another move.

This year, I’m setting new goals for the season, which I’m going to try to revisit in the spring. Check them out below:

  • tone it up love your body quote | sunshine & the bear Find & love: I want to find my version of happiness with myself and ACCEPT IT. There’s is so much pressure to keep up with the proverbial Joneses! We’re always pressured to be skinnier, wealthier, more popular, etc. etc. But are those measures of “happiness” mine? I know the things that make ME happy and I know what I love. I just need to focus on finding and appreciating those things. :)
    Which is another reason I’m so glad the Tone It Up Love Your Body Challenge is coming back – If you know me, you know I enjoy basically every TIU challenge…but I really love this one because it’s not just about working out and eating well, it’s really about making a happy and healthy lifestyle that helps you love yourself!
  • Disconnect: This might be for 5 minutes or it might be for the whole day…I’ve become so tied to my phone, my computer, the TV, etc. We’re checking emails at dinner, scrolling Twitter on the couch…every moment is something. I want to step away from it all and try harder to be present! I want to tune in. Clear out the chaos. And return to that peaceful place again and again.
  • katekatebear letsgetflexy yoga Home yoga routine: I’ve learned to love yoga but I can’t always make it to a class. I want to start regularly practicing at home, if even for a few minutes. Yoga helps me focus, stress less and sleep better!
  • Eat at the table: It seems like a simple thing, but we almost never eat at our kitchen table. We pile books, bags, groceries, packages…everything on our table, except our food! In doing so, we end up eating in front of the TV. I want to get away from that this year!
  • Moderate: So many people are resolving to eat healthier to lose weight (2012 survey estimated that the number of American adults who are dieting jumps from 34 million during the holidays to 50 million in the first two weeks of January!), to undo indulgences, or to simply feel healthier/happier…but I’ve found that never comes from a stark diet change. No need to go cold turkey. The key is moderation.

My wish for your this year is try new things and get out there to do the things that motivate you! Take a break from hating/judging yourself. Meet new people. See new places. Try new things (even if they’re scary). Seek inspiration. Explore the world around you.

Cheers & all the best to you in 2015! ♡

 

Healthy(ish) Boozing Tips + Recipes

blue agave spicy guavarita | sunshine & the bear Getting ready for a big (or small) New Year’s Eve always gives me a little bit of anxiety. Going out with friends is amazing and one of my favorite things to do, but there’s only so many places you can go that don’t push you to spend tons of money and calories on drinks!

It’s so interesting how the tides have turned and I’ve grown past my college ‘just going out to the bar’ days. I have nothing against drinking, and you can definitely do it in a healthy way, but I’ve changed how and how much I intake now that I’m living a healthier lifestyle. :)

Again, you CAN have a few cocktails and not ruin your healthy lifestyle…Some research has indicated that drinking in moderation can be heart healthy by lowering blood pressure, helping circulatory blood flow and increasing the HDL (aka “good” cholesterol). Keep in mind “moderation” is the key word here. And it means 1 drink per day for women, 2 per day for men. 

My Tone It Up trainers and the talented people at Greatist have some good tips to help keep us on track for healthier boozing:

  • Always drink water between each cocktail, sticking to a 1:1 ratio.
  • Avoid pre-made mixes and always use fresh squeezed juices – this helps reduce added sugars!
  • Limit to no more than 2-3 cocktails a night, only a couple times a week.
  • Watch your drink size and keep it to 8oz or less. Watch out for those fishbowl-sized cocktails!
  • Avoid simple syrup (it’s basically just a code name for sugar).
  • Be sure to eat a healthy dinner before you enjoy your favorite cocktails.

Recently, Popsugar shared a post about what it takes to burn off your cocktails and it was definitely enlightening! Did you know it takes almost an hour and a half to burn off those three margaritas that were so easy to drink?

So what can you drink!? I’ve put together a short list of five easy drinks to purchase or make at home that you won’t feel guilty about! Keep this short list in the back of your mind when you know you’ll be heading to a bar or hosting a party and you’ll be all set!

Five healthy(ish) drinks to enjoy!

  • cucumber gimlet | BMOREtoned Spiced Cider: With only about 150 calories, this warm drink is perfect for the cold days and nights we’re seeing this time of year! Add some orange and cloves to give it a winter twist.
  • White sangria: This is an easy way to jazz up your drink if you don’t just feel like having a glass of wine. I’ve included an easy recipe below!
  • Yuengling Light Lager: Looking for a non-watered down beer that’s still light on calories? Yuengling managed to combine the health benefits of a lager with a lower carb count. At only 99 calories, this is a solid selection for a healthier classic brew.
  • Berries Bubbles: Enjoy your champagne treat for less than 100 calories! Add strawberries, blackberries or raspberries to an OJ/champagne mix for a Berry Mimosa. Add pomegranate juice and some seeds for a delightful Pomegranate Punch!
  • Cucumber Gimlet: Add some refreshing cucumber and use agave to get this drink to about 150 calories. Find the full recipe here. In the winter, we also recommend spicing it up with basil leaves!

Originally post on BMOREtoned :) 

Happy Holidays!

Merry merry merry Christmas Eve everyone!

With all the bad, sad & scary things in the news today, spending the holidays with family & friends is an amazing gift! I am so grateful and the holidays seems like the perfect time to recap and thank those around you. It’s been such a brilliant year…

I married to my best friend & spent a beautiful honeymoon in Antigua!

pete redel photography - bmorerowe wedding - katekatebear thefrontrowe

…launched BMOREtoned with two of my best friends!

bmoretoned kate annie jami

…made new besties at the Tone It Up Retreat!

tone it up retreat 2014

…started teaching Surfset classes at Beachfit!

beachfit baltimore surfset | sunshine & the bear

… joined for Molly’s (now mommy to be!) gorgeous wedding!

molly brant wedding | sunshine & the bear

…discovered my love of yoga with the help of new, inspiring friends from M. Power Studio

mpower yoga studio katekatebear | sunshine & the bear

and so much more…

things you cant buy in stores | sunshine & the bear

So grateful to have such incredible, supportive, loving people in my life.

Wishing you and yours the best this holiday!

Svelte protein shake recipes!

excited oprah You get some Svelte! You get some Svelte! You all get some Svelte! HAHA I feel like Oprah right now…

I’m so excited to be the winner of one of Svelte‘s #FitnessFriday contests. The company was so generous and they recently sent me five cases of my favorite flavors! (Tom is also excited haha)

They let me choose my flavors, so I picked a few old favorites (vanilla and cappuccino), one for Tom (chocolate) and an exciting new flavor (banana creme)! I’m so pumped to have these because they’re gluten free, dairy free, organic and, let’s not forget, tasty ways to get protein when I might not otherwise get it. PLUS they have a reclosable cap (which means a lot more than you think!). I’m always on the go with work at the Aquarium, work at the gym, workouts, meetups with my BMOREtoned crew and just…life. These easy shakes are there for me when I don’t have time to throw something together.

svelte cases | sunshine & the bear

I love these, but there is SO much! haha I’m not sure I can actually drink them all (I absolutely can). Don’t get me wrong…like I said, Svelte shakes taste great and are good for a quick meal on-the-go BUT they also work perfect for smoothies as a tasty nutritious boost!

One of my favorite smoothies uses the vanilla Svelte (my Pina Colada Smoothie) but I wanted to expand my horizons…I found an awesome new tropical smoothie from the Svelte Pinterest Page to warm up my insides while it’s freezing out – check out the easy recipe below!

svelte kiwi pineapple smoothie | sunshine & the bear Kiwi Pineapple Smoothie
Ingredients:

  • 1 banana Svelte protein shake
  • 2 C fresh spinach
  • 1 C fresh kiwi
  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 C pineapple

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients together.
  2. Imagine you’re in a tropical place…
  3. And enjoy!

So tasty! I have a lot of smoothies to make… I’m also looking for/trying to create some new recipes with the use of these shakes. They are creamy and flavored and I think they could be really great for some sauces, dips, baked goods, etc. Let the experimenting begin…haha (insert mad scientist laugh)

Cappuccino Chia Pudding Snack
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 C cappuccino Svelte protein shake
  • ¼ C chia seeds
Instructions
  1. Whisk chia seeds into Svelte and set aside for 3 minutes.
  2. Whisk mixture again.
  3. Refrigerate for 3 hours to overnight.
  4. Enjoy!

My next move is to try using Svelte to make some flavored ice cream…we’ll see how that goes! :)

Have an idea on how I can use these shakes? Let me know in the comments!