Time for a change!

Tomorrow, July 8th, marks ONE month since James arrived in our world. Where does the time go?!

I would say that I had a fairly easy pregnancy… actually, I take that back. No pregnancy is EASY, but I had zero health complications and for that I am grateful. I was pretty nauseous until midway through my pregnancy however. For me, nausea = ONLY consuming carb- and fat-filled foods like pizza, quesadillas, cheese, pizza, and more pizza. Did I mention pizza? Ha! I was on the carb-loading pregnancy train, and to be honest, I haven’t yet jumped off yet.

My eating is a bit better these days (by a bit I mean I don’t eat pizza once per day…) and I have more self-control now that my body isn’t being ravaged by crazy pregnancy hormones <– read: I don’t give into every. single. craving. my body throws my way these days. Thank goodness because with James, my cravings were NOT healthy, haha! But my eating still needs a major shift back to the healthy side.

I am *slowly* dropping some of my baby weight, or so I assume based on photos of myself. I won’t weigh myself again until my 6 week appointment in a few weeks. I’m thankful that breastfeeding helps me get back to my non-pregnancy normal. BUT I must say that I am more than ready to kick this postpartum booty into gear and get rid of the rest of my baby weight!

Here are my 2 week postpartum photos:

And my 4 week postpartum photos:

In case you’re wondering, nope, I definitely do NOT like these images of myself but these “before” photos are going to make my “after” photos even more rewarding!

Some may say that 2 months postpartum is far too early to focus on weight loss. I say to each their own! I feel good, James is already a much better sleeper than Dean ever was (knock on wood…), and I’m getting back into my fitness routine next week (Eek! Join me for BODYPUMP, Naples friends!). Eating well and losing the extra weight will only give me more energy to be a better mom and teach better classes!

On August 1st (yes, I know it is a Tuesday – I like starting with the number 1, LOL), I will be kicking off my postpartum 24 Day Challenge! I am ridiculously excited for it if you couldn’t tell ;-)

I know I’ve raved about AdvoCare often on this little blog of mine, but I absolutely believe in this program. It works if you work. Nope, it’s not a quick fix or a crash diet. You don’t starve your body. It is a real food program that teaches us how to incorporate healthy habits into a lifestyle. It is sustainable and you will see results if you follow the plan.

You can find my “Dean postpartum” AdvoCare results here.

Whole, healthy foods + supplements to fill in any nutritional gaps = A healthy, more energized YOU!

If you’re looking to lose a few pounds, find more energy, feel fantastic, or you just want to kickstart a healthy lifestyle, I’d LOVE to have you join me.

The products are safe and effective and my supportive and motivating AdvoCare community is the best! If 24 days isn’t your thang, there are plenty of other options – You can shoot me an email (becky@olivesnwine.com) for details or to join me.

I am super excited to start feeling healthy and energetic again and can’t wait for you to feel the same – Let’s do this together!

2016 – A new year!

I always get a little sentimental thinking of this day two years ago… Okay, today plus two days if we’re counting down to the last second ;)

Kyle and I were visiting Ames for an early Christmas celebration with my family and I remember sitting on my mom’s sofa cursing her slow internet connection as I was attempting to respond to an email from my friend, Lauren. She invited me to participate in a New Years’ challenge and I was so excited, I couldn’t wait to respond with “HECK YES, count me in!”

The thing is, I had been thinking about trying out Advocare for almost a year but I always found an excuse… time, money, prior commitments, skepticism… You name it, I listed it off as a “reason” to why I couldn’t/shouldn’t/wouldn’t try Advocare.

Thankfully, something changed when I read her email that afternoon. Maybe I just needed a little push in the right direction, a friend to help me along the way, someone to lead me toward something better…  It just so happened that I decided to finally make a change for the better in December 2013. 

A LOT has changed for us in the past two years – a big move south, The Deanster, leaving corporate America, and pursuing my passion in health and fitness.

Never once did it cross my mind that by saying yes to Advocare that cold December day I would be setting myself up for an incredible and (almost) unbelievable journey. Advocare has not only taught us how to live a balanced, healthy lifestyle but through A LOT of hard work it has provided residual income, an incredible group of friends, and an avenue for me to begin my personal training business. I’m not certain I will ever be able to give a big enough “thank you” to everyone who has helped me on this little journey of mine!

Oftentimes I kick myself for not starting sooner. Why did I wait an entire year to jump on board? I could have been one whole year further into my journey… But then I realize we start when we are ready. Maybe that is you, maybe you are ready to take the leap and start a healthier way of living in 2016.

All-In 2016

If you’ve been thinking about this Advo thing… Maybe thinking about it for a LONG time like I did… I’d love for you to join me for our 2016 ALL-IN challenge. The products are safe and effective. You will feel great and have loads of energy. And you never know, it may just change your life like it did mine.

If you’re ready to start and want to join us for our ALL-IN January 2016 24 Day Challenge, you can find more details here.

You can read more about my journey (and see some of my before/after photos!) here.

I’m always available (and I secretly LOVE it!) to chat about Advocare as well. If you’d like to chat, feel free to shoot me an email: becky@olivesnwine.com – We can talk about your goals and how Advocare can help you reach them in 2016 and beyond.

So let’s hear it, who is ALL IN with me for 2016?

Tips for getting the most out of your 24-Day Challenge!

Over 80,000 people are committing to a healthier lifestyle this week. EIGHTY THOUSAND!!! That is an incredible number and I am honestly blown away. The ALL-IN Challenge is the first nationwide challenge in AdvoCare’s history and everyone is PUMPED up!

Success Tips Collage

In the spirit of challenge week, I thought I’d share 21 tips on how to have a successful 24-Day Challenge. Yes, it takes work and a bit of planning, but your new healthy lifestyle will be 100% worth it in the end.

Now, grab your Spark and a pen, and take some notes on how to be successful over the next 24 days!

All-in challenge!

1. Commit – Commit, commit, COMMIT. You CAN do it. Use your coach, your friends, your family, the Facebook group (if you’re on my team) and everyone you meet to stay committed. Let them know that you’re participating in the challenge, that you are 100% committed, and that you appreciate any support they can provide!

2. Plan and prepare – Fail to plan, plan to fail… or however the saying goes! The key to success throughout the 24 days and beyond is to plan ahead. Figure out your meals for the week (I’m sharing a weekly plan each Sunday in January), understand your work and family demands, and schedule time to focus on you. These 24 days are all about self-improvement so you can be the best that YOU.

3. Don’t cheat – Really now, DON’T cheat! It’s ONLY 24 days… 3 weeks and 3 days. And like I said before, you CAN do it. If I can go 9 months without a sip of wine or a bite of sushi, you can do 24 days.

4. Ask questions – If this is your first rodeo you are going to have a few questions. This is totally normal and to be expected! Your coach will be a HUGE asset for you during this time for everything from flavor recommendations to when to take your supplements to what you should be eating!

5. Exercise – Movement is so good for your body and your mind and it doesn’t have to be anything intense. A 30-minute walk is all it takes to brighten your mood :) My favorite ways to move are BODYPUMP, running and the StairMaster, but pick one that is best for you! Find an activity that you like (<– very important!) and get some extra steps in your day. It will help to clear your mind and keep you focused on success!

6. Stock up on Spark – 28 servings come with your challenge bundle, but if you’re anything like the rest of us Advo-lovers, you’ll go through that in about 10 days – LOL. Buy a few extra boxes – or if you already have a favorite flavor, get a tub (they’re more cost effective!) and be prepared for the best energy of your life!

7. Add-on Catalyst – Speaking of things you’ll want to stock up on for your challenge, Catalyst is definitely one of them! It helps to preserve, tone and build lean muscle mass while burning extra fat. Catalyst is one of my favorite AdvoCare products… along with Spark. They call it “lipo in a bottle” for a reason ;)

8. Remember those before and after photos and measurements – Yes, your before photos might be painful to look at but it really helps to SEE a difference after those 24 days are complete. How you look and feel and how those old jeans fit mean a heck of a lot more than that number on the scale. Plus, if you’re adding in extra exercise and taking Catalyst, the scale might not decrease as much as you expected… However, your clothes will fit SO much better, you’ll have some extra muscle definition to show off, and you’ll see that difference in your photos!

9. If you slip up, take a breath and put it behind you – Mistakes happen to the best of us. Take a deep breath and don’t let it ruin the rest of your challenge. Start your next meal (yes, your next meal… NOT the next day) fresh and you’ll be good to go!

10. Become a distributor – No one should ever pay full price for their Spark! If you love the way you feel and all of that extra energy you have with your new AdvoCare lifestyle, ask your coach how to become a distributor. You will save yourself some serious money and have a 20-40% discount off of ALL Advo products. Heck yes! There is also a great business opportunity if you choose, although it is most definitely not required.

11. Watch your portions – Yes, chicken is healthy and recommended as a great protein source as are avocados for healthy fats, but a 20-ounce chicken breast served with an entire avocado isn’t the healthiest choice. Part of the challenge is learning how to eat well which includes correct portion sizes (our idea of a portion in the good ol’ US of A is completely out of whack) – Ask your coach if you have specific questions about this!

12. It’s a lifestyle, not a diet – AdvoCare doesn’t cut out any food groups (unless you count processed, bad-for-you foods as a food group…) The 24-Day Challenge teaches you how to live a healthy lifestyle by incorporating healthy food choices, moving your body, and supplementing to fill in any nutritional gaps. View it as a lifestyle and you will see continual success past those initial 24 days!

13. Try new foods – This challenge is all about self-exploration and allowing ourselves to feel the best that we can! Maybe you’ve been wanting to try pomegranate seeds for a few months or there is an interesting vegetable at Whole Foods that you’ve been eyeing… Try it out! You might just find your new favorite healthy food.

14. Drink water, LOTS of water – Extra water will help to flush your system. It will get your skin glowing sooner rather than later. And it will make you feel incredible. Drink at least half of your weight in ounces per day. I like to be an overachiever and aim for 100 ounces per day!

15. The Fiber Drink – Oh, that darn Fiber Drink. It’s bad, it just is. My advice? Plug and chug. And remember that you only have 6 to drink throughout the entire challenge – You can do it!

16. Have an accountability partner – Doing the challenge with a friend or family member or a coworker will make the experience SO much better. You can meal prep together, drink your Spark on Saturday mornings, meet up at your local gym… The opportunities are endless! Plus, there might be a time when you don’t want to eat the healthiest… Your accountability partner will be there to make sure you see the 24 days through!

17. Use that extra energy to your advantage – The first few days of the Max Phase (Days 11-13) are my favorite days on the challenge! You will have LOADS of extra energy from those awesome supplements, clean eating, Spark and Catalyst – Use them to your advantage! Have your house cleaned, the dog walked, your workout done and your weekly meals prepped by 7am on a Sunday <– Yes, this WILL happen – you will feel like you can take on the world and it is awesome!

18. Plan something special for all of the money you’ll save – Confused? Saving money, on what?! Without buying those daily coffees, booze-filled happy hours with coworkers, workday lunch outings (mine tend to be at least $10 daily!), and expensive wine dinners on Friday nights, you will save a boatload of money over the 24 days. I saved around $250 on my first challenge! I treated myself to a few new pieces of Lululemon (in a smaller size, I might add!) after my first challenge and the money I saved made me rethink my daily “fun money” budget.

19. But yes, you can still go out and have a good time – It will just be less expensive :) Of course, go out with friends, enjoy some soda water with lime at happy hour, grab that Chipotle salad once a week for lunch, and find a healthy restaurant for dinner (broiled fish + steamed veggies are my go-to when dining out on the 24DC!). A healthier lifestyle doesn’t mean stopping your life, it just means living it a better way.

20. Share the love – Do you have a friend that desperately needs energy? Or maybe you have a running partner that is looking to up their game? Share AdvoCare with them! Give them a Spark and tell them about your challenge and goals. I don’t think I’ve met a person who didn’t like Spark, you’ll have another accountability partner and you’ll be making their lives 100% better by helping them live a healthier lifestyle (or get that PR in their next race)!

21. Ask your coach about Day 25 – Halfway through the challenge you will be feeling great and all of a sudden the end of the 24 days will cross your mind. What do I do on Day 25?! I love this feeling, how do I keep it going? There are SO many options depending on your goals (continued weight loss, sports performance, energy, etc.) and your coach will steer you in the right direction. I always suggest that everyone continue with Spark and Catalyst, but the rest is determined by your personal goals!

As always, if you have any questions about AdvoCare or the 24-Day Challenge, please do not hesitate to reach out to me (becky@olivesnwine.com) – I am more than happy to help anyone!

If you want in on the challenge fun, you can purchase your bundle here.

Fellow challengers, what tips do you have to add to this list?

Seven days of healthy eats – Recipes and more!

Heard a lot about AdvoCare and the 24-Day Challenge? Ready to jump on board and begin an incredible journey to a healthier lifestyle? If you want in on the challenge fun, you can purchase your bundle here or reach out to me (becky@olivesnwine.com) for more information!

Since we’re kicking off the ALL-IN challenge on January 7th (THREE more days – who’s ready?!), I am starting a new Sunday post theme for the month of January. Each Sunday – the post will go live early Sunday morning, I was just behind this week! – I’ll share a full 7 days of breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack ideas to keep your meals exciting and healthy this month.

healthy eats Collage

I have to warn ya, I’m not too exciting when it comes to breakfast so coming up with 7 different breakfasts is a stretch for me. But hey, it’s good to challenge yourself, right?! Also, I will be listing leftovers as an option for lunch and/or dinner. A lot of the meals I recommend serve 4-6 and I don’t like wasting food ;)

Okay, onto the meal plan!

Breakfast:

  1. Root-Veggie Hash – Saute a sweet potato, beet and onion in 1 TBSP of coconut oil until tender. Serve with an egg on top! Serves 2-3.
  2. Avocado-Egg Salad – Mix 1/4 avocado with one hard boiled egg (HB egg). Spoon on top of a whole grain rice cake. Serves 1.
  3. 1 TBSP peanut butter on a whole grain rice cake + banana. Serves 1.
  4. MRS <– There is also a vegan option here. Serves 1.
  5. 1 cup mixed fruit salad (no added sugars or syrups) + HB egg. Serves 1.
  6. Protein Pancakes – 1/4 cups oatmeal, 1 scoop chocolate Muscle Gain, 1/4 cup water, 1 egg, dash of cinnamon; mix all ingredients and pour onto griddle. Cook one side for a few minutes before flipping. Top with 1 TBSP peanut butter and 1/2 cup fruit. Serves 1.
  7. Two Egg Omelet Scramble – Mix two eggs, 1/2 cup chopped peppers and onions and cook over medium heat until done.

Lunch:

  1. Dinner Leftovers  x3 <– Key to an easy work day!
  2. Black Bean-Avocado Salad with Shrimp – Mix 1 can black beans (rinsed) with 1 chopped avocado. Drizzle with juice of one lime. Top with 4 ounces of shrimp per serving. Serves 4.
  3. Quick ‘n Easy Salad – Chopped romaine, cherry tomatoes, diced carrots, celery and onion and one packet of tuna. Drizzle with lemon juice and 1/2 TBSP olive oil. Serves 1.
  4. Chicken-Avocado Salad – Mix 1 avocado with 8-10 ounces shredded or chopped chicken breast. Serve with whole grain rice cake and an apple. Serves 3-4.
  5. Mango Chicken Salad – 4 cups romaine salad, 1 pound cooked, shredded chicken, 1 mango – diced, 1/4 cup diced red onion <– mix together and top with dressing (1 TBSP dijon mustard, 3 TBSP olive oil, 1 chopped garlic clove, juice of 1/2 lemon) Serves 4.

Dinner:

  1. Chipotle Salad – BEST part of the challenge ;) Just leave off the dairy, use salsa as a “dressing” and stick with chicken! Serves 1.
  2. Turkey burger with baked sweet potato. 1 serving = 4 ounce burger
  3. Hummus Chicken
  4. Broiled Salmon with Lemon and Roasted Brussel Sprouts – Slice lemon and place on top of salmon filets. Broil 8-10 minutes, until fish is flaky. Chop sprouts in half and toss in 1 TBSP olive oil. Roast at 375 for 20-25 minutes, until brown and crispy. 1 serving = 4 ounces salmon and 1 cup sprouts
  5. Pesto Spaghetti Squash Casserole
  6. Romaine Leaf Tacos – Lean ground turkey or bison mixed with homemade taco seasoning (just leave out the sugar!), in lettuce leaves with chopped tomatoes, black beans, salsa and avocado. 1 serving – 4 ounces meat, 1/2 cup beans, 1/4 avocado.
  7. Leftovers <– You knew it was coming! We aren’t being wasteful this January ;)

Snacks:

  • Apple + 2 TBSP nut butter
  • 1/4 cup almonds
  • Carrots + 2 TBSP hummus
  • Small box of raisins
  • AdvoBar <– These taste like a caramel latte and have A TON of protein.
  • 1/2 cup oatmeal made with almond milk

Good luck to all of you challengers starting this week! You are going to rock your socks (and mine too!) – I hope this gives you a few extra meal ideas for this next week.

Challenge time!

Happy Memorial Day!

I’m getting ready to head out and enjoy the rest of my long weekend – I hope you are too :) I’m just popping in to share a quick post with y’all to let you know about an upcoming challenge. A bunch of you have reached out recently with questions about the AdvoCare 24-Day Challenge and now is a great time to jump in!

advo

My team has a large group challenge starting on June 9th and I’d love for you to join us!

The 24DC ends just before Independence Day and is a great way to help you kick of a healthy summer.

Reach out to me (becky@olivesnwine.com) if you have any questions. You can also find more specific product information here.

And if you get a chance, make sure to wish Katie a happy birthday today!

AdvoCare Cleanse Phase Recap & Review

Before I get into my AdvoCare update, y’all need to watch this video! Katie sent it to Carly and I this morning declaring that it will be us in 50 years <– I couldn’t stop laughing because it is so true, grandma’s twerking ;)

kcb

If I had to place each of us, I’d be the one in the middle trying to be rational (read: no fun – “Listen, your a$$es are old”), Carly would be on the right all confident in her bad old twerkin’ self and Katie would be on the left saying she wants to try it!

Okay, now that you’re back and had a good laugh-crying fit, let me tell you all about my first 10 days with AdvoCare!

The first 10 days are the Cleanse Phase of the challenge. This is the part of the challenge where you set yourself up for success in the final 2 weeks, the Max Phase. Parts of the challenge were easy and parts were extremely difficult for me… namely giving up my multiple daily servings of Nutella and all things peanut butter + chocolate (wish I were kidding!) and the whole no alcohol thing ;)

Advocare Challenge

Before I get into the pros and cons and my current results, I want to share with you the “schedule” of the phase. Below are what supplements I took and meals I ate, broken out by day/time:

Days 1-3:

  • Upon Waking: 1/2 serving Spark mixed in 24 oz water + 2 Catalyst, wait 20 minutes
  • Fiber Drink mixed with 10 oz water + 2-16 oz water, wait 30 minutes
  • Breakfast + OmegaPlex pills
  • Morning Snack
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon Snack
  • Dinner + OmegaPlex pills
  • Before Bed: Herbal Cleanse tablets

Days 4-7:

  • Upon Waking: 1/2 serving Spark mixed in 24 oz water + Probiotic Restore + 2 Catalyst, wait 30 minutes
  • Breakfast + OmegaPlex pills
  • Morning Snack
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon Snack
  • Dinner + OmegaPlex pills
  • Before Bed: Herbal Cleanse tablets

Days 8-10:

  • Upon Waking: 1/2 serving Spark mixed in 24 oz water + Probiotic Restore + 2 Catalyst, wait 20 minutes
  • Fiber Drink mixed with 10 oz water + 2-16 oz water, wait 30 minutes
  • Breakfast + OmegaPlex pills
  • Morning Snack
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon Snack
  • Dinner + OmegaPlex pills

I know the schedule and supplement regime seems like a lot but it really isn’t. Before AdvoCare I already took a lot of supplements (#HLBprobs) and it honestly wasn’t anymore than I was already taking.

So, what are the “pros” of the Cleanse Phase?

  • It removes toxins from your body – I felt (and still do) AMAZING during the cleanse phase. It might have been the fact that I was getting rid of the gallons of champagne and pounds of sugar I consumed over the holidays but I think healthy eating and beneficial supplements also played a major role.
  • It gets you back “in tune” with your hunger signals – I don’t know about you but I ate and ate and ate some more between Halloween and NYE and totally lost any concept of the feeling of hunger or fullness. Thankfully, this part of the challenge gets you back in touch with your body by offering adequate (not too little, not too much) portion sizes and keeping you hydrated.
  • Energy, energy, energy! – Holy smokes did I ever have energy during those 10 days! (I have heard the Max Phase gives you even more energy… watch out Chicago!) I woke up early, was productive at work and at home and fit in great workouts during those 10 days.
  • Feeling of lightness – Fiber drink – or as I like to call it, the fiber cocktail – need I say more? Plus I was able to eat a TON. I was never hungry and ate every 2-3 hours, my style of eating ;)
  • Ingredients – I am all about natural (except for my whole Nutella obsession, I get it…) and was very concerned about what AdvoCare entailed before trying it. I did a lot of research and asked Lauren a million and two questions (thanks Lauren!) and felt very comfortable with the types of nutrients and ingredients I was going to be consuming. I was also concerned about the products making me feel sick (I can’t take a multi-vitamin without getting nauseous and light-headed) but had NO negative reactions during the Cleanse Phase. I like to contribute that to the quality ingredients that go into all AdvoCare products.
  • Saving some serious dough – Okay, yes, the challenge is pricey (although it is on sale through the 21st – more on that at the end of the post!) but with how much I’m saving by not buying certain things, I’m actually saving more than I spent on the challenge itself! Here’s a breakdown: Coffee – $2-3/day ($50 total); Lunches out – $20/week ($60 total); Chocolate afternoon runs (don’t tell me you don’t do this too…) – $10/week ($30 total); Happy hours/Drinks – $30/week ($90 total) = A total of: $230 saved and this is on the conservative end – shopping here I come!

And what about the cons of the Cleanse Phase?

  • The Fiber Cocktail – Hello, gag reflex! (Insert #TWSS joke here) I am not a picky eater, I’ll even eat foods I don’t really like without an issue but this drink was awful. The flavor, the texture, it was all bad… Thankfully, there are only 6 of them and by the end, I found that mixing with 10 oz of water and chugging as quickly as humanely possible was the only way to get these down. Even then I was only able to get 80% down my trap. Thankfully, as you will see below, I still saw great results during the Cleanse Phase so don’t beat yourself up if you can’t choke this one down.
  • The caffeine content of Spark – I know that most of you don’t have issues with caffeine but I am super sensitive to it. All of those Starbucks Instagram photos you see are decaf! Anyways, Spark has about the same caffeine content as a cup of coffee so I was nervous about taking it. I cut the recommended Spark serving in half and also mixed it with 24 oz of water (that’s diluting it 6x more than what is recommended, haha…) and was totally fine. The flavor is amazing and I love the way it makes me feel but if you have any issues with caffeine, I recommend cutting the serving in half :)
  • Self-control is hard – Like realllllyyyyy hard guys <– Tell me I’m not the only one with this problem. Days 6 and 7 were difficult days at work, I didn’t drink enough water on Day 9, I was tired on Day 8 and by Day 10 I just wanted a dang beer and a plate of nachos with a side of chocolate cake on a Friday night. This is where motivation and extreme self-control kick in. It’s difficult, reallllyyyyy difficult but whenever I hit these bumps, I remembered how amazing I felt – both physically and emotionally, and how great a mimosa, a glass of champagne (or 3…) and a slice of chocolate cake are going to taste on my birthday weekend!

And now, my results! As a disclaimer, I did weigh myself on New Year’s Day following a #treatyourselfTuesday style NYE where I consumed a salty, 4-course meal along with my weight in champagne. Some of this loss is definitely what I like to call “the cookie layer” (doesn’t that sound so much better than bloat?) but I am also contributing a good portion of it to AdvoCare since it is filling me with healthy, quality nutrients.

  • Total Inches Lost: -7.5 
  • Total Pounds Lost: -6.2

To clarify (mainly because Kyle was worried I had lost over 7 inches from my waist in 10 days…), you measure 7 places on your body – including your hips, legs and arms – and add up the measurements to get to your total inches lost. So no, in case you were concerned, I am not turning into a Barbie-like figure with a disproportional waist ;)

Phew, that was a long post – Thanks for sticking with me! I wanted to give you all my honest review about the AdvoCare 24-Day Challenge (I’ll be doing a Max Phase review on the 25th after I’m complete!) before I shared the following news…

I’ve become an AdvoCare distributor! Okay, so it might not be as exciting as my previous news but still, I’m pretty darn excited about it!

Like I mentioned, the AdvoCare 24-Day Challenge is on sale now through January 21st (it is only offered at a discounted price once per year!) and I’m offering up an incentive for those of you interested in purchasing the challenge. I will send 3 samples of Strawberry SLAM (basically a condensed Spark that is great to drink before long runs or gym sessions – it won’t make your stomach feel full!) to the first 4 of my readers to purchase a 24-Day Challenge (or any AdvoCare product, they have great performance and wellness lines as well!) from me.

Please, please, PLEASE do not hesitate to reach out to me (becky@olivesnwine.com) if you have any questions, hesitations or just want to know more about AdvoCare! I’d love to fill you in on their great product line and help you find the right products for your health and fitness goals :) And, if you do decide to purchase the 24-Day Challenge from me, I’ll be available to you for the ENTIRE 24 days (You’ll also get added to a great Facebook group that provides TONS of encouragement for the challenge!) if you have any questions or need help or motivation!

Have you tried AdvoCare? If you were considering purchasing an AdvoCare product, what would you be looking for in the product (performance, wellness, weight loss, etc.)?

J. Law, Chicago PD, Chocolate and Sleep Smells

Since today is for Thinking Out Loud, this post consists of random thoughts that were running through my head while writing.

Enter at your own risk ;)

1. First of all, thank you all for your encouraging and uplifting comments about my job. I was having an intensely stressful, no good, very bad day so my disdain for the company was slightly exaggerated – albeit very honest – on Tuesday… I am now focusing on the positive (what I can learn from this job for my own personal and professional benefit) and am looking forward to opportunities that come knocking at my door! Plus, I may have offered up some very (How do I say it?) blunt feedback to my manager’s boss on Tuesday morning – Best. Feeling. Ever. :)

Everything you have been mad about, everyone who has let you down, all the things you have done and got nothing in return, all of the times you were criticized... remember that this is the ammo for success. Success is the greatest revenge.

2. Mitchell asked me to extend a quick hello sniff to his friends – Moose, Mizza and Bella that stopped by to say hi yesterday! And also to the new, nameless pup that he can’t wait to hear more about <3

Mitchell on Stone Arch

3. My AdvoCare 24-Day Challenge is going fabulously so far. Today is Day 9 and I plan on doing a quick update after Day 10, the last day of the Cleanse Phase, before I head into the Max Phase. I thought I would miss wine the most followed by my morning java and weekend daily pizza but what do I actually miss? CHOCOLATE. I have this habit of eating lots of chocolate after lunch each day at work. It’s mostly boredom- and/or frustration-driven but it has been the most difficult part of the challenge so far for me!

Advocare Challenge

4. Similar to Amanda, I have a very important decision on the cusp of its deadline. I need to decide what type of birthday cake I want. It needs to be simple since Chef Kyle will be making it – he’s a chef, not a baker, but I’d love suggestions on your favorite type of birthday treat! FYI – Chocolate MUST be involved ;)

chocolate cake

(Image source)

5. I have a strange (I think it’s completely normal but Kyle thinks I’m a freak…) habit of smelling my pillow before bed. The first time Kyle saw me pick my pillow up and smell the wonderful smell of sleep, he looked at me like I had gone bonkers. Whatever – to each their own, personally I like the smell of sleep and my pillow is one of the best smelling things in the world ;)

bed

6. It took almost 5 months but I think my hair has finally accepted an every other day washing schedule! The first two months were brutal but eventually my oily scalp calmed down (for the most part) and I can at least rock a pony on day 2. I am going to share my favorite dry shampoo (and other beauty favs) with y’all in an upcoming post!

7. The City of Chicago needs to learn to shovel their darn sidewalks. The ONLY sidewalks in the city (besides the ones in the shopping district) that are clear are the sidewalks owned by my gym. On the positive side, it’s a darn good leg workout attempting to get around by foot lately! Maybe that’s why my glutes and quads have been so sore…

8. On another Chicago note, it has been so cold that the river has frozen over. All I have to say is that it better thaw by March – I want to see a green St. Patrick’s Day river!

river

9. The new television show Chicago PD is filming in my apartment building today! My friend is a director on the set (She also worked on the set of the first Hunger Games film and is on a first name basis with my fav, J. Law – #ohmagawd!) and I have heard rumors that Steve from SATC is part of the cast… I’m hoping for some celebrity run-ins today ;)

jlaw

  •  Who’s your favorite celebrity? Jennifer Lawrence and Julia Roberts
  • What is your favorite “weird” smell? My pillow and auto fuel
  • What type of cake do you ask for when it is your birthday? Chocolate, anything with chocolate!
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