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Friday, 28 November 2014


Have you heard of Lamily?  No? Have you heard of Barbie? Pretty sure thats a yes.

Well..Lamily is the "Barbie" made with the proportions of the average american teenager.

I have included the post below and encourage you to check it out! Did you know it would be physically impossible for a human to ha e the measurements of a barbie doll?

Are our children influenced by this toy? Did you play with them? Is thisnpitting pressure on young women to meet insane standards and how does it affect their body image?

Personally.. I played with them... and i would have played with Lamily too without even thinking about her hips or waist size..especially if it was easier to get thise damn cloths on! Kids look with different eyes..what child doesn't think their mother is beautiful??  It is only when we start putting our ideas of beauty on them that they begin to develope an attitude of what is "perfect" .

If my daughter constantly hears how I hate my thighs need to be smaller and my boobs need to be bigger.. then of course they are going to also project those ideas on themselves. Do I want my kids to be healthy, eat right, and stay active? Of course! That takes educating them and encouraging them.

Simple negative remarks about ourselves (or them!!!) creates the vision of what beauty is for our kids.

Be a positive influence..teach your kids (and yourself!) What beauty really is → confidence, health, a positive attitude, their smiling face, being active, caring about yourself enough look your best at the same time being happy with your body and whatever journey you are on.

Be the light for your kids to see



So.. I feel like I have been monopolizing Jacobs time and decided that instead of the ladder I will make a mob to the stair master for my HIIT... and im happy I did!

I love changing things up (im sure you know this by now) and hitting the stair master was a great way to so that.  So basically you set the speed and walk/run/jump up the steps as they come down. You xan how onto the side railings, which if you are a beginner I definitely suggest doing.  Like all cardio type machines, it is a little wierd when you at moving.. but not going anywhere!

Personally i do 5min warm up at a decent pace..  and by that time I am board out of my tree.. even with music so I start doing 1min intervals → looks something like this

1min of each of the following:
Side steps right
Side steps left
Knee lifts before step
Power jump up a step then quick jump up a step (hold the railings!!!!)
Skip a step
Hamstring curl before step
Crank up 3stepping levels

Between each minute I step regular for 30seconds .. repeat these 3times and you will be drenched in sweat, your heart will be pounding, and in a short amount of time you will go into serious calorie burning.. SWEET!

if you at focusing on your minute (or your 30 rest! Ha!) Then the time really doesfly by rather then drag on like typical cardio..


Obviously the stair master hits a major way - quads, hams, calves, and butt.. and sure.. technically you could do this on the stairs at your house ... so if thats your only option... go to it!!! But we are talking hundreds of steps here so.. the machine is a lot more convenient for that... and it also doesn't give you much choice.. the stairs are coming so can either step or fall off!

Change things up, challenge your body, dont settle, find what works for you and have fun!!


Thursday, 27 November 2014


Peanut Butter.

With dark chocolate,  with jam, with honey, on toast, on apples, on celery, on a spoon..

One of the best clean eating foods going and I often add it to smoothies,  and always to my protein ball recipie, PB is the bomb!

I have attached some pictures becasue it is so easy to make at home, tastes so much better and you can control what (if anything! ) you put into it.

Have you ever actually looked at a Peanut butter label? Nope.. not just nuts. Soy, sugar, preservatives, emulsifiers, corn or soy oil,  corn syrup, sodium and often many things I can't even pronounce. Should peanut butter not just be mashed up peanuts? ? I certainly think so!

If you have a food processor it couldn't be easier.. throw in the nuts and whirl it up till its smooth.. the natural oils will.come out and make ut extra creamy if ti u at patient enough.  I have a hand blender amd like my PB chunky and thick so I just mash it up and throw it in a TupperwAre and into the fridge. Easy peasy, cheap and tastes SO much better! 

If you are no where close to being Betty Crocker..  sure.. go out and buy some natural peanut butter. You need to mix the oils (no crap to keep it emulsified! Ya!!) And keep it in the fridge.. but honestly.. give making your own a go.. its worth it and fun for kids too :)

Any nuts will work too..  almonds, hazelnuts. . You pick!  Oh.. I should talk a little about why peanut butter is so good right? :/ protein, iron, vitamins b, d, zinc, filling, delicious.....the list goes on :)  enjoy!

♥ Kara

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Snow day yoga!

I kind of had an idea that it may be a snow day today... living in Northern Ontario  .. we get a few. I am very blessed to have my Arbonne business that allows me to be able to stay at home with my kiddos when this (often) happens and not be struggling for daycare or braving the icy roads to get to my j.o.b.

Blake, Gracie and I get to spend the day cooking, playing and doing whatever we want. . looking at this snow day as a gift rather then a pain in the butt.

I do have to modify my workouts a bit tho..but with the internet at my fingers I can come up with a decent home workout.

Yesterday was HIIT ( and Jake again this time with 40bar sprint intervals..holy sweating!!!!) And legs.  U was super stoked as it was the first time I did actual squats is Forever since knee surgery.  Sure it was pretty light but I dont care.. I did the full range of motion  and without pain.. and even today, not much swelling. Last night I had a couple reflexology sessions and finished up around 8:30pm...  ... with my kids already being in bed I guilt free hitting the gym again.

I dont often work out twice in a day except when I seperate cardio and weights.. but knowing today may be a write off, and frankly I typically do team sports at night..without these I have been going a little crazy :p.

Last and glutes.. not a huge workout but enough to get sweating and I didnt hit glutes when doin legs in the morning.

Today the kids and I did a yoga workout off of youtube.. 30min. Then I did some pushups & crunchies. Basic stuff but gets you moving!  On to crafting, dancing and outside playing :D

Be thankful for today!

Monday, 24 November 2014

Chocolate dipped Strawberry Protein Bars

I swear this is not a cruel joke.. I'm not lying to you either.

These are Heaven.

I have been doing my very best to stay out of the kids Halloween candy and frankly,  its been going quite well but only becasue I have come up with a plan... make healthy treats!

I have made my fair share of protein balls to curb the sweet cravings and though I absolutly love them and make them slightly different each time.. I needed a change... and well.. here it is!

Simple, few ingredients, no bake, and so yummy ..... pretty proud of this!

21/2c strawberries (I only had frozen on hand.. thawed and they worked great) blend till smooth
1cup of each coconut flour and vegan vanilla protein powder.. mix together till forms a soft dough and spread it on wax paper on sheet.. thickness is up to you.

Place in fridge and melt 1c (ish ;) ) dark chocolate  and spread over strawberry protein base.

I added sliced almonds to half leaving the other clear so kiddos could pack it in their lunches (no nut school policy) .

Once dark chocolate has hardened up, remove from fridge, cut into bars or squares, pack up and back to fridge...

Try them!

*** other protein powders will work ok too but the pea & brown rice combo of Arbonne really is better for flavour and easily digestible.  It is also vegan, gmo free, and doesnt contain artificial colour or flavours. The flavour of your protein is paramount in this recipie!!!


Thursday, 20 November 2014

Going heavy

LOVE LOVE LOVE the new workouts!!!!

Today was shoulders, biceps and triceps and I was feeling the pain by the end.

Almost every exercise was switched up so that I did one set of 12 then one sure heavy set of between 3-8 reps depending on what I was working... and it felt awesome to grab soemthing super heavy and really tear things up! :) a couple examples:

Triceps push down on the cable machine.. on a typical day I would do this super set with a bicep.. maybe dumbbell curls with the tri being 25lbs, and the bi being 15lbs. I would do 3 sets with of 12-15reps.

This new workout I did not superset...

Triceps push down was 12 reps at 30 rest 1min then push down for 8reps at 45lbs. Rest repeat,  rest, repeat.

Then change exercises to bicep..
12reps of 15lbs rest then 6 reps of 25 . 
I have never curled 25!!! Felt awesome and my body is going to respond with some gains in size and strength and I cant wait!.

Today is leg day which will be interesting and I will modify as I am still not able to add weight to most exercises.. so a super heavy set is obviously out... but I'm definitely keeping the heavy sets in for any body part I am able!!!

Woop woop

(Yeah.. this kinda thing gets me excited :)

Embrace change and challenges!!!

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Date with Jake

Great workout today! Started off with my Jake.. love that thing! 15min with intervals  and then switched Maddy for another 15 on the bike... (I dont like sharing him, but I will always share with my Derby wife Merciless Maddy ;) )

It got us sweating so we hit back and chest.. pull ups, pull downs, flys, seated row, bent over rows, bench press, and Divebomb pushups...

Divebombs are insane and hit your shoulders and core as well.. see pictures below! Its live diving down under a fence and then he a up and reverse. . down and back up is one rep..

It has been working out that Maddy and I do chest and back on tuesdays.. but we always change up the exercises to keep ot interesting,  keep our bodies guessing,  and also becasue she has a stronger chest and I have a stronger back... so we push eachother with our weights and reps.

A good (& buff!) friend gave me some workouts to try so we will jump into those tomorrow and I will let you know how we make out.  Thanks Jeff! Looking forward to switching things up again.

Monday, 17 November 2014

Protein Powder Myths

Protein powder is one of my favorite foods  as a shake and certainly past a shake too. I will go deeper into protein recipes as I blog but we need to start with finding the right kind..and also a little chit chat on some.protein myths.

First → protein powder is in fact "Real Food" and certainly part of a clean eating diet. I am not telling you to consume only protein as your body does need vitamins, nutrients, minerals, carbs and fats from a  large variety of sources.  Protein powders are derived from food. Hemp protein is made from the production of hemp seed oil for example; it is simply made more convenient by turning it into a powder form. Look for naturally sourced proteins when shopping.

Second → they are all full of artificial ingredients.. this is like saying all popcorn is bad for you based on the overly salted, too much melted margarine type from the theater.  Are some proteins chalk full artifical flavours,  refine sugars, aspartame and fillers? You bet.. it is up to you to ask, read labels and research; and by all means.. just becasue an athlete is sponsoring a certain product line does not make this null and void.. nor does it mean they actually use the products..all it does mean is that they were paid a karge amount of cashola, get the product for free and wear the shirt. RESEARCH.

Third→ Protein Powder is for men only who want to bulk up.  Wow.. and here I thought we were past that... but ok.. so.. regardless of what is between your legs, if you have muscles..regardless what size they are, they need amino acids to repair and build. Amino acids are only found in protein and that is why you always see the word "essential" in front of it. Your body does not make these and you need to consume protein for your body to use them. We are talking biceps, glutes, abs as well as muscles such as your heart.. all need essential amino acids to work properly. Protein will not make your muscles bulk up. That is based on a combination of exercise program, sleep and a specifically designed diet.

Fourth → The protein is destroyed when heated. This is all over the internet and people love to throw around the word "denatured" .. so.. really lets look at this. Does the protein structure change when  it is cooked? Sure. Just like eating a raw egg rather then scrambling it. Does the quantity of protein or the nutritional value change? NOPE. Does your body absorb the same amount of amino acids? YEP.

Now that the myths are out of the way.. the next post we can talk Types! W oohoo!

Clean choices my friends!

Just becasue you're wearing earphones, doesnt make your farts silent

Wow.. gym etiquette to me is typically common sense stuff and though it definitely deserves its own post. . and will get one.. I just want touch on one in particular. .. bodily gases.

Here's the thing.. when doing squats and one accidentally squeezes one out.. we can all look the other way and pretend nothing happened. .I mean that is a genuine mistake and with all that pushing~ its bound to happen to every gym rat at some point.

Im talking about constant repetitive gas.. like the "you need to go take a crap right now" kind of gas.. sure, you are eating more protein and clean carbs then normal, butt (ha!) Just go shit already and save the rest of us from smelling it through every rep.

Common sense.

Did you also know that just becasue you are wearing earphones and the music is cranked, and you can't hear yourself singing..and by default cant hear the machine gun coming out of your butt? We still can.

Here is a funny story from a few days ago.  .. ... well sort of funny, and made me puke in my mouth a little too. Post workout I love to really sweat in the sauna.. I said "bonjour" to the two ladies that were waiting to swim and proceeded into the lovely heat.  While relaxing, these ladies began a farting war.... and nope, they were not little lady squeakers. . these were full on Farts with a capital F! Proceeded by giggling and chatting which I was happy to not be able to translate.. i stayed in the sauna until I was absolutely dripping becasue I didnt think I could look them in the eye without a disgusted look on my face.. So.. all the power to them.. im sure I will see them again and im sure they wont care one bit.. possibly even do it again. . Who knows. I held my breath when l headed to the showers, got dressed back in the sauna, and held it again while leaving.. me and my weak stomach would have hurled for sure if the smell was anything like the sound :/ .

Funny story.

In kindness and consideration to others,

The humble potatoe

Why do potatoes get such a bad wrap?

I don't get it.

It may be true that potatoes contain a lot less nutrients then what they used to.. but this is due to commercial farming, and genetic modifications to make them whiter, bigger (or smaller!) , with thinner skins and quick maturing rates.. but guess what.. they are still an EXCELLENT source of many thibgs and should not be overlooked in a clean eating diet.

No cholesterol, low calorie and low in fats.

Excellent source of vitamin C (healthy bones, teeth,  gums, hair, and skin)

Vitamin B6 & B1- healthy nervous system and increased energy

Iron, zinc and copper for healthy blood, bones and teeth

Potassium for blood pressure

Folic acid requirement for making new cells and blood health. . Hugely important for pregnant mothers

Rich in fiber.. keeps you regular and feeling full

Clean carbohydrate that gives your body and brain energy

These are incredible health benefits,  add in some sweet potatoes or purple ones and you can add to that list now..  dont ignore taters! !!

Now.. you know im not talking french fries, tater tots, or mashed with huge quantity of butter and cream... they can taste delish "friend" with a touch of olive oil in the oven, baked with some unsweetened greek yogurt (I fool my family with this all the time!!), or mash them up but easy on the additions :D.

We grow potatoes in out small side garden and besides being incredibly fun for the kiddos to dig up, they are super easy (plan and leave them till fall), they taste SO much better then store bought and they last a long time in cool temperatures.   When we run out I also like to buy locally grown ones from Craig Haven farms (we also get our eggs and.some veges there too along with pumpkins and hay rides :) ) .. the beautiful pink potatoes below are from them. Try to buy locally.. it is typically cheaper and much better for you!!! Or even.. grow your own :) .

Way to go Potatoe.

Eat clean, train dirty :)

Back to the gym

So.. it has been over a week since I have been to the gym :( and it has killed me just a little bit.

Monday and tuesday last week were snow days and besides playign outside with the kids.. we mostly did crafts and baking. Wednesday I spent 7.5 hours in a friends tattoo chair getting a coverup for a fairy tattoo on my ankle that I have had since I was 15 (not getting into how many years ago that was).

I absolutly LOVE it ~ see pictures below :D

It did however derail the few days post. So I spent most of Wednesday clenching every muscle in my body and considered that a decent workout.

The next 2days it started to swell my ankle and was still a little goopy, pretty sore and I slept on the couch propped up on pillows as I was scared I would wake up stuck to my bed sheets . ha! but seriously I was scared. Friday night we had an awesome roller derby fundraiser dance where I... of course... still squeezed my cankle (not a typo)  into my 3" heels.. and did some dancing...

Saturday & Sunday I was feeling the pain (and should have taken photos of the size of my foot!)  and had a full two days of hockey tournament with my son Blake.. no time for hitting the gym.. though with the up and down and jumping around in my seat I still burned a few calories :p

And here we are.. Monday and finally the tattoo is starting to dry up and scab over and though it still feels a little tight,(& bloody itcht!) im not so concerned about getting a little sweat on it.. and we all know.. when I come to workout, I come to sweat!

Still a bit of work to be done on the tattoo but nothing as major as Wednesday and im probably NEVER going to get anything close to my achilles again.. (rather birth a third child then do that again... ;)

Some pics below of the work in progress as well as the swelling! Worth it in the end, just make sure to plan any work you are getting done so you can put life on hold a bit after.

Back on schedule!! And loving it ♥ Did an hour on the bike to start the week off right then some legs and core .



Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Healthy mind Healthy body

The World Health Organization states " there is no health without mental health".

We really tend to look at these (mind and body) as two separate things when they are in fact so intertwined they NEED to be addressed as one.

When I feel stressed,  it is always in my stomach. From mild butterflys to grab me a bucket becasue im going to hurl.  I didnt realize this until not long ago as is the case so often.. we need outside eyes, a journal, a third party to help us make those connections sometimes. once you recognize it, it is easier to change and heal.

Head aches, high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma, depression, insomnia, chest pain, ulcers, these are but a few problems that are directly linked to stress and emotional disorders. 

A few signs you may need help dealing with stress: chronic headaches,  anxiousness, changes in sleep patterns and appetite, irritable, cant concentrate, body aches and sickness are recurring. As always, talk to your doctor if you find you are always in that constant stressed out state of mind.. and do this BEFORE you start seeing some really bad physical outcomes.

How well do you handle stress? do you pour a glass of wine (or a bottle?) Do you go for a walk/hit the gym or vegetate with a bag of chips and a soap opera? do you post random "poor me" facebook status updates or do you have a close friend/family member that has an ear to listen? 

Everyone has stress. Its a part of life. Sometimes we bring it on ourselves and sometimes it is out of our hands. The key is how you can deal with it.

Some tips for living with stress: (you will note they are the same tips for being healthy!!)

-get enough zzzzzz's
-eat healthy
-drink water
-find a buddy (to talk to/work out with)

Remember too that not all stress is bad! Sometimes stress can motivate you, make you focus, give you energy, good stress also helps the immune system, and is the cause of our "fight or flight" response system. 

Seom of my personal favorite things that beat stress - gym time, boxing, roller derby, getting outside, tea, hot shower/bath, time with friends and family ... I dare you to do any of these and tell me you feel just as wound up as before you gave them a go :). 

Below is a link to an excellent study showing how various emotions affect the body.