Oh hi, Boulder. I think I love you.

Hello from the Fitness & Health Bloggers Conference in beautiful Boulder, CO!

Oh Hai, Rockies!

It’s kind of awesome here. I might keep it. 😉

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This is me! If this is your first visit to the blog, I encourage you to read a little bit about me, catch up on my background with weight, health, and starting this blog, and peruse a few of my top posts.

I started off my day bright & early with an 8:30 flight out of DC, killing time on the flight by laughing my ass off (much to the delight of my seat-neighbors, I’m sure.)

Bossypants

Buy this book. Seriously. I’m only four chapters in and I already have a cramp from trying to hold in my laughter on the plane! After waiting forevvvver for the Super Shuttle (and meeting up with a couple of other conference-goers on the way!) I arrived in Boulder!

Welcome to Colorado!

I’m rooming with Casey, and our room is on the Concierge floor of the hotel – complete with breakfast buffet access (sweet!) and the most amazing sundeck. I haven’t had time to check it out yet, but you can bet that I will be snapping some pics of the fantastic view later!

Strawbs.

Right now I’m munching on some Driscoll’s strawbs (I’m sooo hungry – no time for lunch!) and listening to the keynote presentation by Shellie Pfohl, the Executive Director of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, & Nutrition.

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She was appointed by Prez Obama himself, and is discussing the state of the US’s health (note: it ain’t good.) and what the government is trying to implement in order to change that. Very intersting, but saddening statistics! Well, at least we’re in the healthiest state in the country while listening to it, haha!

I’ll be back with plenty more updates as the conference continues (working on my multitasking skillz, yo!) If you’re attending the conference, be sure to flag me down and say hi!

Daily Eats – 6/23/11

Breakfast

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Kashi Heart to Heart + Special K Pecan cereal + chia seeds
Almond Milk

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A granny smith apple + Justin’s Maple Almond Butter

Snack

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Popchips!

Lunch

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Veggietastic turkey patty (the last one! SOB!) + asparagus and taters

Snack

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A few pieces of ritter dark chocolate with whole hazelnuts

Dinner

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Rice bowl!
– Brown rice
– Orange and yellow peppers
– Broccoli
– Shrimpies
– Homemade peanut sauce (PB, soy sauce, sesame oil, fish sauce)
– Dusted with shredded coconut

NOM!

Plus, an unpictured corn on the cob. MMMMM.

Too lazy for calculating. MUST PACK FOR CO!

Boulder or Bust!

Howdy howdy, folks! Happy Thursday! Except, it’s really like Happy Friday for me (YAYYYYYYYYY!) because bright & early tomorrow I’m boarding a plane bound for Denver, CO! Why? For the Fitness & Health Bloggers Conference taking place in Boulder, of course! I am very excited to be attending my second blogging conference, and am sure that I’ll be coming back with even more inspiration and passion for this li’l ol’ blog of mine (lucky you, eh? Hahaha.)

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I’ll be rooming with Casey, and am really looking forward to meeting more people, as well as reuniting with some of my Fitbloggin’ pals! I just have to make sure I pack my bag much more mindfully, since I don’t have the luxury of driving back with all my swaaaag this time, hahaha.

Since I’ve been doing so much traveling lately , I have to admit that the condition of my room has been, uh, less than stellar. After all, what’s the point of unpacking a suitcase if you’ll just be packing it back up the next weekend, right? This week I did finally hit the breaking point of my slovenly living though, and it was time to finally do something about the warzone-room flashbacks I was having. I even ended up scrubbing my bathroom from top to bottom! And bonus? I got supah sweaty cleaning up, so I’m totally counting it as my workout for the day. 😉

AVERT YOUR EYES!

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Atrocious, I know. But! Have faith, my friends! It wasn’t long before all of that became all of this:

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And the suitcase HAD to stay out, since I’m doing that whole traveling thing again starting tomorrow. But at least it’s not buried under a pile of dirty clothes anymore. Progress, right?

The bro and I took the pups over to the ‘rents for family dinner (another money-saving tip, in case you missed yesterday’s Weight Loss 101 installment!)

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I think my mama would be very pleased with my productive afternoon.

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Total resemblence, right? Hahahahahaha.

Who else is going to the conference in Boulder this weekend? Shout out! And for those of you who aren’t going to be there, what are your tips for staying healthy while traveling? I think it’s pretty obvious that if I continue spending as much time away from home as I have been, I need to start implementing some much better practices. This weekend I’m specifically traveling to a conference that centers around health & fitness, so I’m hoping the damage won’t be too bad, but still! Can’t hurt to have some tips/tricks to pull out of my pocket!

Daily Eats – 6/22/11

Breakfast

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Fresh juice! Juicing is back!
– 1 granny smith apple
– 1/2 cucumber
– Slice o’ lemon

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Lemon Zest Luna Bar

Snack

Pop chips!

Popchipppps

Lunch

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Veg’d up turkey burger
Asparagus
‘Taters

Snack

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I got hit with a MAJOR sweets craving this afternoon… which doesn’t usually happen to me. And I didn’t have anything healthy on-hand so I went to the deli downstairs and got… a cookie. Except, they automatically come in packages of 2. So I was just gonna eat the one…

But then I ate the other one, too.

Oops. I need to find the Popchips equivalent of cookies.

Dinner

Family dinner night at the ‘rents!

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Baby carrots & TJ’s tomato-basil hummus

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Carrot & cilantro soup (um… yeah.)

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Sweet & sour pork

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Shrimp & veggies

All on top of about a half-cup of white rice.

Dessert

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Grapes and cantaloupe!

Weight Loss 101: Eat Real Food, Not Your Savings

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So lately I’ve been thinking a lot about eating healthy and finances. As in, how do you eat REAL food without going REALLY broke? And then yesterday Ali tweeted at me that she had similar concerns: How do you eat healthy without going bankrupt at the grocery store? Which obviously got me thinking about it even more. I’ll be the first to admit (and I’m sure that my sister will be the second, haha!) that I am not exactly the most frugally minded person. Sure, I can appreciate a good deal as much as the next person, but for the most part I adhere to the mindset that I would rather pay more for better quality, faster service, or convenience, than have to deal with the opposites of those things. Don’t get me wrong, I can appreciate a rockin’ deal as much as the next person, but some things aren’t worth the hassle to me. Hence why it’s more likely you’d find me leisurely perusing the displays at Nordstrom than getting sweaty and harried pawing through the racks at Marshall’s, haha.

That being said, I’m not exactly rolling in it over here. And real food is expensive! Ramen is cheap, produce is not. So while I often ignore my own advice, I do feel like this is an area where saving money really matters. And I feel there are some surefire ways to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck when it comes to healthy eating.

Number 1: Eat at home.

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Uh, duh. This should probably go without saying, but I’m gonna say it anyway: If you want to save money, don’t go out to eat. Shop for your own groceries, and prepare your own food. I spent just over $20 at the store yesterday and will be covered for meals for three days. When you break that amount down, you’re talking about something like $2 – $3 a meal!

Number 2: Meal plan.

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I’ve admitted in the past that I’m not very good at creating and following meal plans. I try to pretend it’s because I’m all spontaneous and like to be creative with my meals, but really I’m just lazy and unorganized hahaha. This week I tried to make an exception, however, because I’m taking off for the Fitness & Health Bloggers Conference in Boulder, CO on Friday morning! So going grocery shopping mid-week, while a complete necessity given the state of food options in my house, wasn’t the most ideal situation. I didn’t want to buy things that were just going to spoil when I left! I feel that the biggest money-suck when it comes to eating real food is having it spoil because you weren’t able to utilize it in time. Meal planning is the absolute best way to avoid this.

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Number 3: Make (and stick to!) a grocery list.

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My list yesterday was super short because I was literally only shopping for a few days’ worth of food. But if I hadn’t done up a list, I would have walked out with so much unnecessary, unusable food.

Number 4: Buy generic.

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Stacy’s pita chips are priced at $2.99 a bag. Giant’s Nature’s Promise brand pita chips at priced at $2.49 a bag. Which product should you purchase? Seems like it should be a no-brainer, right? I mean, sure 50 cents might not seem like that much, but it adds up. Fast. And this rule applies across the spectrum: groceries, pharmacy items, etc. People will pay a lot more just for a particular brand slapped on the packaging, when the generic version is just as good (and oftentimes, the same manufacturer makes both products anyway. So you are LITERALLY just choosing between a branded and a generic version of the exact same thing.)

Number 5: Stretch your meat.

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There are lots of creative ways to make the expensive items you buy, like meat, last longer. Cara gave me the tip of adding ~2 cups of mashed chickpeas (which you can snag for about $0.89 a can!) to turkey burgers to bulk ’em up and stretch ’em out. I took that tip as inspiration for my own dinner last night, which involved bulking up my T-burgers with tons of veggies that I already had!

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I chopped up green onion, red onion, button mushrooms, and grated baby carrots and added it all to the mix. Not only did it make for big, thick patties, the mushrooms kept the meat SUPER moist (often a complaint when it comes to turkey burgers — thanks for that tip, Aunt Lynda!), but the meal was healthified with the addition of extra veggies, AND it helped alleviate that whole food-spoilage thing mentioned previously by letting me use up more items that were just waiting to spoil in the fridge! Win-win-win.

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With the addition of asparagus that I subbed the grocery-listed bibb lettuce for because it was a much better deal, and potatoes that I already had lying around, we have a complete meal, with enough leftovers to last me for lunch today AND tomorrow (and would have lasted another dinner, too, if I hadn’t been a piggy and had two patties last night. Whoops! Hahaha.)

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I really need to get on this meal-planning train much more regularly. That way I’ll have more money leftover for the massages I apparently desperately need! 😉

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What are your tips for saving money but still eating healthy? Another thing I should probably look into doing more is deal-shopping (going to different stores for specific items) and couponing, two things I’m terrible at! Any advice on those fronts?