3 Years

It’s so hard to imagine that it’s been 3 years since I started this little blog. I was a freshman in college, still trying to figure out college life. Now, I’m a senior.  I can honestly say that I’m a completely different person now than I was when I started my blog. New struggles have arisen, but more have been resolved. This blogiversary is especially bittersweet solely due to the fact that I am a senior, and I will be graduating this year (well, fingers crossed-still plenty of time to fail a class!). Having a blog through some of the life shaping years has been a blessing. I love being able to peak into my freshman self’s mind on a day to day basis, although some of the things I find certainly make me cringe!

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(Also-look how far iPhone technology has come!)

In the theme of my blogiversaries past, I’m going to go through the 12 things that have changed in the past year.

  1. My career path. As in, I have one. This time last year I was just starting to figure out I wanted to go to veterinary school, but had yet to take any steps to get closer to that goal. Between then and now, I’ve worked at a veterinarian, taken animal physiology, gone to pre-vet conferences, gotten a better sense of what I need to do, and am actually considering what specialty I might want. And I’ve never once doubted that this was the right decision.0F1A3085
  2. Gotten really sick and totally changed what I eat and how I view food. In February, I developed what I lovingly call a mysterious stomach condition. From February to May, it was very severe and majorly impacted my life. From May-August it was significantly reduced but would occasionally flare up pretty bad, with the climax flare right before school started leading to a last minute endoscopy. Since then, I completely cut out gluten and it actually helped a lot—there are times I still feel off but I haven’t really had any all out flares. As a result of all this though, when I choose food more often than not I don’t choose it for the nutritional value, I choose it for how I think it’ll make my stomach feel. Choosing crackers over brussels sprouts may not always be the most nutritionally sound, but if that’s what I think is going to make me feel the best, I’ll go with that. I’ve also been forced to be super in tune with my body. I have certain senses about specific foods and I trust my body that what I feel won’t make me feel good is not something I should eat. That being said, I definitely don’t always listen to these because this girl likes her desserts too!IMG_4212                        At the senior welcome during a flare up.
  3. I have become head over heels obsessed with cows. I realize this is a little less serious of a change, but everyone who knows me knows this. I studied them quite a bit last winter and think they have the coolest physiology. Maybe it’s because of my interest in nutrition or my complicated stomach issues, but their 4 stomachs are the coolest thing ever to me. At this point I’m not sure if/what specialty I would potentially want to go into, but I would tend to say either large animals or gastroenterology.IMG_4454
  4. I turned 21. I’ve officially passed all the big adult milestone birthdays! In all seriousness though, this is a big one. While I’m not a big drinker by any means, being legal allows me to socialize and network in important ways that I wouldn’t otherwise. For example, at the IDEA conference, had I not been 21 I would not have had to opportunity to meet and talk to as many people.IMG_3479
  5. I got a puppy and watched her grow up. This may not exactly be a change for me directly per say, but as someone who wants to work with animals as a career, it was a really good experience to raise a (difficult) puppy. I learned a lot and got some insight into the behaviors and changes to expect in a dog’s maturation.             IMG_2780                                                                      What a baby—and those huge feet!
  6. I suffered my first serious injury. At the beginning of September, I did something bad to my shoulder. It is quite likely I partially dislocated it. It was really bad for quite a while. I could’t do ANYTHING. It’s still not 100% but doesn’t hinder everyday life and I can do most of the things I want to in Crossfit. This was a frustrating, humbling experience, especially since I spent the summer getting really strong; I went from PRing almost all my lifts to not even being able to lift a 2 lbs dumbbell overhead. This forced me to take a step back and reevaluate how I approach fitness.                                                                   IMG_0052                                                                 Feeding goats post-injury with my little left chicken arm because it hurt to have my arm straight.
  7. Sort of a result of 6, but I reevaluated my fitness and training. I came to the realization that if I continued to put the stress I was putting on my body, I wouldn’t be able to do all these things I love 20,30,40 years from now. With my exercise physiology project training for a 400m sprint, I realized I could train more efficiently. I needed to run with fewer footsteps, and I needed to stress my body less with weightlifting/Crossfit. I decided I didn’t need to run as many miles, especially if I focused on speed and quality. I limited myself to only 3x/week of Crossfit. I did more spinning (see 8). My body responded amazingly. I felt so much fitter. My times on everything were improving, and when I went to my home Crossfit, I felt so light on my feet. (The irony of this is I feel tired/heavy/sore right now because I didn’t listen to my own advice last week!) I busted out the Turkey Trot 10k 30s faster this year, without killing myself. I also started doing my everyday runs faster just these last couple of weeks, and I’m actually able to do them. Less fatigue makes it possible for me to choose to run faster, and apparently when I choose to run faster I can do it!IMG_5035            Yesterday’s run. Definitely didn’t know I had this in me.
  8. I took a bit of a step away from the blog world. This was somewhat intentional and somewhat not. Part of it is other things have become more important. Part of it is I’ve gotten less motivated. But honestly, a big part of it is I feel like I have nothing to say or add. Because of said health issues+the college lifestyle, nutrition has gotten less important to me and talking about it on here sometimes feels inauthentic. I still struggle each day to eat well, and still haven’t totally solved the ideal way to eat in college. Or in life. And sometimes food is the most frustrating thing in the world to me, because either I want it and can’t eat it, or I feel terrible and think it’s from food but it’s so complicated and I have no idea why. I’ve also gotten really lazy about commenting on other blogs. This is mainly just because I’ve switched to almost exclusively reading them on my phone though!
  9. I started teaching spin classes regularly. During this time, I got my own classes at 2 different gyms (one of which I had to give up this quarter due to my school schedule). I’m now teaching 2x/week at my school gym, and it’s been absolutely incredible. The first day, I was so nervous despite the fact I had been teaching at a smaller gym for almost a year. It’s hard to imagine that those nerves will ever go away, but now I’m definitely in my element. I’ve had the pleasure of teaching completely full classes, and I have regulars. The most rewarding thing to be though is all the first time spinners that have come to my classes. A lot of people will be a bit tentative and nervous at first, but I see them come back week after week and the difference is stunning.   IMG_4832                                                                   Clearly I was comfortable enough to wear a turkey hat to class.
  10. I came into my identity as a leader. I truly think that a leader is in my personality, but I wasn’t always confident enough to take charge. The development of this characteristic is incredibly important in what I hope is my future career. I think a lot of this confidence comes from teaching spin and commanding a class. I love encouraging people to work harder and get better. I also find myself taking charge in other aspects of my life. Even with my friends, I have no problem planning an event myself (or inviting myself over). This summer, I went to IDEA World Fitness conference. On my own. The conference was incredibly rewarding and I had no problem flying myself out there and taking advantage of the workshops, the workouts, and the people. Even with my job this summer when I definitely didn’t know all the ins and outs, I happily talked to clients and led new employees through the ropes.IMG_3048 IMG_3059                                                                          As seen at IDEA World.
  11. I saw more of the world. This summer, I travelled a lot! I went to DC with family (and reaffirmed that this is where I want to spend the year after graduation), I went to downtown LA for the first time (I had been to other parts of LA and SoCal a lot thought), I went to Hawaii, and I went to New York City for the first time! New York was awesome just because going is a key life experience that I had never had. It was fun to see all the things I had heard about and seen many times in movies.IMG_0061_2                                                                   Friends fountain
  12. I started to really appreciate my school. My first couple of years were demoralizing as I struggled through my biology and chemistry prerequisites. I questioned everything. I didn’t have much time for fun. My junior year was much better, and since then I’ve enjoyed my academics a lot more. Because I’m a senior, everything is becoming more real for me and I’m struck with the awe of an admit. I’m finally realizing how truly amazing it is here and how lucky I am. I’m appreciating all my schools traditions and quirks, and I made the most of football season this year! It’s crazy to think that in a few months it will all be over, so I’m trying to embrace the little time I have left. IMG_0186                                                                        PAC 12 CHAMPS!


1 Day Until My Blogiversary!

Once, again, we are approaching my Blogiversary. 3 years…how did 3 years pass so quickly? I know I haven’t been posting as much as I would like lately but it’s finals week so it is what it is! Today I thought I’d throw it back and repost my blogiversary post from 2 years ago in preparation. It’s interesting to see how much as changes even since then! Expect an ACTUAL blogiversary post on Wednesday though! For more 12 days of Christmas, check out the tab!

12 Things That Have Changed in the Last Year

Today is the last day of Christmas! You know what that means? It’s officially my blogiversary! Yay! I hope you guys have liked these last 12 days of posting. I certainly have had a ton of fun writing them. And forcing myself to be creative in the kitchen-it’s been way too long since I spent any time there!

I want to use this last day to reflect on the past year. I feel like so much has changed, but I think it’s all for the better. If you’re curious, here’s my first post. It’s not as embarrassing as I was expecting. My next few those? Yeesh. (Why would I name a post 1,2,3, Testing?) Also, can we take a minute to talk about how my writing voice has changed? For some reason last spring quarter I was so sarcastic. Not that I’m not now, but I feel like every word was dripping with it. Interesting….Also-check out this food picture from one of my first posts…work of art right there folks.


So without further ado-12 things that have changed in the past year.

1. I quit rowing. To put it quit frankly, I was drowning. Fall quarter, it was such an awesome experience. To this day I miss the girls on my team. Winter quarter we moved in with varsity, and I just didn’t love it anymore. Plus, the time commitment increased-it was about 5 hours a day. I had a tougher class schedule, and was rapidly falling behind. Plus, after being one of the fastest over the fall, I just wasn’t improving and couldn’t keep up. This all took a huge toll on me-but that’s not (directly) why I quit. I was determined to finish the year with my commitment, or at least the quarter. My body had other plans though and I got a really bad case of mono (which actually changed my life a lot for many different reasons). Long story short-2 ER visits, crazy high fevers for WEEKS (101 on Advil and Tylenol), inability to get out of bed for 2-3 weeks, and ALL of Friends. Like, all 10 seasons. It was really awful and I had to go home-fun fact, while I had mono, I also caught the stomach flu, strep throat, and a week later, a cold and cough that developed into an ear and sinus infection. I think it’s fair to say that’s by far the sickest I’ve been in my life. At that point, it would be nearly impossible to gain my strength back in time for racing season, plus I took it all as a sign that what I was trying to do was just not sustainable for me. When I got back to school, I had such an amazing time because I actually had time for a social life, not to mention time to study (I know a lot of collegiate athletes do fine, but it just wasn’t working for me for a sport that I didn’t absolutely love.)


2. I ran 2 half marathons! I have entirely the blog world to thank for this. Before discovering this amazing community, the only people I knew who ran half marathons were my spin teachers, and it seemed absolutely insane. After seeing so many bloggers do it, it didn’t seem so unattainable, and here I am now, a half marathoner! Heck, I even ran 16 miles once! One year ago me would have thought that was impossible.


3. I realized that I’m semi-allergic to nuts. Or at least have a sensitivity to them and they cause my face to break out like crazy (or the newest thing-now they’re causing itchy rashes.) The irony is I ate peanut butter (only like a tablespoon) for the first time in many months the other day and now my skin is rebelling…ANYWAYS-this is kind of a big deal because if you read my blog way back when this was started, the amount of peanut butter I was eating was insane.


4. I got spin certified! This was something I’ve been really wanting to do for a while, but if it wasn’t for the blog world, I wouldn’t have had the courage to actually do it! This would have been so much of a better point if I actually had a job teaching already, but I can’t even THINK about that until after finals.


5. My outlook on life has changed. Blogging has made me so much more thankful for everything in my life, and I appreciate the little things so much more. I’ve always loved the holidays, but I never celebrated fall in the same way (or ate so much pumpkin…) Last year around the holidays I felt really homesick, but not at all this year. Maybe it’s because I’m older and have more friends, but I think it’s also because through my blog I can still celebrate.


6.  My weight. This is definitely not something I discuss a lot here on the blog, but it’s definitely a change. I avoided the dreaded Freshman 15 in the fall through rowing and being too busy to eat any free goodies, but the stress of winter quarter and stress eating, then dropping a lot of weight while I was sick and gorging to put it back on plus some-and going a little crazy in spring quarter (I’m not talking alcohol calories, I’m talking giant yogurt bowl calories and late night snacks with friends calories), I wasn’t in the best place with my eating habits or body going into the summer. I’ve figured so much out since then, and am slowly getting back to where I want to be, but it’s definitely a process. I still haven’t totally figured out college eating-especially with all the free food and stress dead week offers-but I’m definitely in a better place and know I’ll get there eventually.


7. My training (aka my workouts) have changed drastically as well. When I was rowing, that was pretty much all I was doing. We did team weights and some running/spinning, but it wasn’t the same as hitting the weight room hard on my own, or going to my favorite spin classes-unless I wanted to wake up at 5am and add a spin class to my 2 hour erg workout (which I did once..never again).  In general, I have to be training for something. I used to always be training for softball, then for rowing. Now-I guess it’s for running. I trained for 2 halfs (yay!), started Crossfit, and am now attempting to gain some speed for 5ks. I’m actually really, really enjoying 5k training. Running fast (ish) is fun! Plus it makes my feet much, much happier. I definitely still crave the long runs though! The thing about 5ks…I think I actually have the potential to be decently fast. I think if my training and my NUTRITION (heh heh) was on point, I would actually be able to go out there and race pretty competitively (i’m talking local 5ks, not collegiate championships). And it helps I’m still in an age group with relatively few runners…But I just don’t see myself ever being remotely fast in long distances like halfs.


Last year’s Santa Run 5k

8. I started Crossfit! It really is so much fun. I’ve always loved weight lifting so this is right up my alley. I really miss the people at my home box…only a week until I’m back there!

1460991_607294419306736_1407940927_n9. I just feel like mentally I’m in a much better place than I was last year. I’m not a freshman desperately trying to make friends, and although I’ve had a pretty heavy workout this quarter, I feel like I have my life together pretty well-something that when I was rowing was definitely not the case. Now I’m the person getting homework done days before it’s due (this does not apply to all my classes though…)


10. My fitness level has changed. Although only this weekend’s 5k will tell the tale…I was in really good shape last fall while rowing, I did actually lose quite a bit of strength though because I wasn’t lifting hardly at all. Mono completely killed any fitness I had ever gained-after not being able to even sit up in bed for weeks, EVERYTHING made my abs sore. I never really regained any of my running shape until I started training for my half though-since then plus Crossfit, my endurance has skyrocketed! I PRed my second half by 3 minutes, despite the course being much hillier. I think I would actually be in decent rowing shape as well-since I can’t mentally force myself to do another 6k test, I did a 3k test, and was right where I wanted to be without totally killing myself.


11. I have so many blog friends now! Though I haven’t met hardly any in real life, they really do mean a lot to me, and every single comment really does brighten my day and bring a smile to my face. I also feel so lucky to not have gotten any of those negative commenters. I really do love each and every one of you! I seriously do get so much joy out of blogging. I love interacting with all of you and I love following along on your lives!



12. I am so much more confident than I was a year ago. I’m another year mature, sure. I drive myself around places and live as an independent adult. But I also feel like spewing my thoughts to a bunch of strangers on a daily basis has also helped this. Reading inspirational stories from so many beautiful and strong women has helped this. I’m confident in who I am as a person-sure my body isn’t 100% where I want it to be, but that doesn’t bother me-I know I’m getting stronger and will get there eventually, and for the most part I don’t stress about it. I think about how far I have come in the last year. I’m so much stronger than I was a year ago, physically and mentally. The experiences of the last year have shaped who I am today, and I couldn’t be happier, whether they were good or bad (like Mono-it stunk but made me stronger in the long run). And I couldn’t be more grateful to have you guys by my side. Here’s to next year!


One Year Ago



Study Break

It’s dead week. I can’t believe tomorrow is the last day of fall quarter classes! My last fall quarter here. Gulp. I’m currently sitting under a blanket of exercise physiology class notes, but I met my studying goal for the day so here I am!

What is it about exams that make us want to eat ALL THE THINGS? I’m not even stressed! (—yet. I have nothing due until next week so the good old strew response driven productivity has not kicked in yet.) I’m doing my very best to not eat ALL THE JUNK and at least shove food into my mouth that wan’t cause too much damage-leftovers of actual food, granola bars, banana with carob chips.

So what’s been up lately? How’s this for college life: I stayed up late crafting a colorful flat faceless human, and we currently have a cricket under a cup duct taped to our floor.

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I had to make an anthology for my Native American Literature class, so I made a physical representation of a human made up of stories. I lovely refer to him as my flat faceless human.

On the workout front, I’ve done some running, some spin, some Crossfit. I taught my last couple of spin classes until the next session starts up in January!

I also went to a spin class at a nearby studio. It was fun—it’s always nice to go to a class other than my own! This was the view post-class:


To start the week, I had a couple of chilly runs.


One 4 miler, one track workout—6x400m. Since my official training for my class is over, I’m trying to slowly increase the number of repeats I do to get in 5k speed shape.


I am firmly on the yogurt bandwagon. Lately, I’ve been putting jam in it. I usually eat breakfast immediately post-workout, so I want the quick carbs!


Yogurt with sun butter and raspberry jam, plus some leftover roasted sweet potatoes.


Yogurt with persimmon and sun butter.



I packed a lunch because I didn’t have time to go back to the house. This was leftover quinoa with butternut squash and dijon roasted brussels sprouts. We have temporary chef right now who is fantastic! I actually miss packing lunches—I feel like I end up with a better amount/mix of food so I generally feel better throughout the day!


Chicken, wild rice salad, fruit. Plus tomato basil bisque with cheddar cheese. If you don’t eat tomato soup with cheddar, you’re doing it wrong. This was perfect for a rainy day!




This was a snack before spin-a persimmon and a Luna bar. I also had a couple of tortilla chips with leftover guacamole.



Chicken piccata, salad, and veggie chili over greens. I think I could have used some more meat though because I found myself snacking the rest of the evening!

Oh-one last note. My blogiversary is coming up! As you may or may not have noticed or cared, I’m not doing 12 days of Christmas this year. While it has been super fun to do, at this point my blogging isn’t as regular as it once was and therefore it doesn’t merit the time that goes into putting that together! I will still likely celebrate my blogiversary though 🙂 Can you believe it’s almost been 3 years??

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas My True Love Gave to Me…

12 things that have changed in the past year.

Here’s last year’s post.

Yayy! We’ve reached the 12th day of Christmas, and it’s officially my blogiversary! And this is one of my favorite posts to right because I think it is really interesting what has changed in a year. It’s absolutely crazy to me that I now have TWO YEARS of my life documented on the Internet. Thank you all so much for reading and commenting-your comments never fail to make my day! Stick around to the end of the post for a little something fun. So, let’s dive in!

1. I’m teaching spin now! Last year it was a big deal for me to be certified, but I never was too ambitious with applying anywhere. I finally took the leap, and am so, so glad I did. It’s so incredibly rewarding.

2. I actually have a more clear picture of what I want to do with my life that I’m happy with, and I’m laying out plans to get there. This one has been a constant struggle for the past 2+ years, so this is a major change. I don’t want to talk specifically about what it is yet because I have changed my mind a lot in the past, but I will say I’ve mentioned it here a while ago before.

3. I eat fewer “products.” Granted, this is partially because there are about 2 protein bars out there with nuts, so those are mostly out the window, but when I was thinking about last year’s giveaway post, I couldn’t even begin to think of my favorite items! This isn’t particularly bad or good, it’s just different.

4. I figured out how to eat ideally for my body. And then learned why it wasn’t sustainable. After avoiding processed foods completely for two weeks, I felt amazing. But it wasn’t necessarily practical for where I am now, and the backlash was pretty bad. I basically went crazy on sugar afterwards and basically undid any positive health changes.


5. I discovered roasted vegetables. Why I never really explored them before is beyond me. Roasted carrots are life. My roommate happened to be randomly roasting them one day and it changed my life.

6. I lived like a “real person” for the first time. I jetted off to DC this summer and worked a 9-5. I lived in the city for the first time. And loved every minute.


7. I’ve gotten more perspective. I’ve become friends with people who help me grow as a person. I’ve lived in a different place, and I traveled around the East Coast a bit and saw the world from different perspectives. I became a much more open person in college, but I think more than ever in the past year.


8. I firmly stopped believing in nutrition trends and fad diets. While I know they can be effective for some people, I felt like in the past I was either looking for a quick fix, or would believe anything. More often than not, when I see a headline I just roll my eyes now. I trust myself and my nutrition knowledge and research more than some over dramatized headline.

9. My interests have shifted. Don’t get me wrong, I still love nutrition and metabolism, but I guess I feel there isn’t that much there left to know, that much deeper to dig. I know there’s still so much we don’t know in this field, but maybe I’m a little burned out. I feel disillusioned or something. Blog content won’t change-don’t worry-but I don’t see that as necessarily being my life direction. Which, honestly, I see as even more of a reason to keep my blog up and going. If that’s not my career, I need it to be my hobby.

10. I HARDCORE avoid nuts now. After finally confirming my suspicions with an allergy test, I’ve been pretty good at avoiding them. And I know quite cleared when I screwed up. Did you know that a lot of Thai food is cooked in peanut oil? Yeah.

11. I broke my addiction to coffee. Or something. I definitely had it this morning…But I drink it significantly less. Partly it’s because I don’t live near close coffee and partly it’s because I actually get a decent amount of sleep, but after getting sort of caffeine dependent this summer and then getting over caffeinated to the point it was scary, I really try not to make it a habit. After that one incident, I had to go through a caffeine detox which was not fun. Versus last fall when I had a crazy school load and drank it about every day.



12. I’ve met some crazy awesome people in the past year! Whether through the Internet/my blog, or in real life. Seriously! It has been a great year! So I think it’s time I share a little something with you all.

What’s the one product I still eat very regularly?

Sunflower seed butter! I’ve gone on and on about how I love the amazing flavors from the Farmer’s Market, so to show my thanks, I will be giving away 2 jars to on lucky person.


The flavors are Cinnamon Brown Sugar Sunflower seed butter (amazing) and Chocolate Chip Cookie Almond butter (which I haven’t tried for obvious reasons but sounds amazing!).


So, here’s how it will work. There are 3 ways to enter.

1. Comment on this post with your favorite nut/seed butter or something that changed for you this past year.

2. Instagram the following picture and tag me! fitnessissweet

3. Tweet about it and include the following picture, and tag me! @fitnessissweet. Alternatively, you can retweet my tweet about the giveaway.

Each person can enter each way once (so up to 3x). I will chose a winner 12 days from now, at 5pm on the 21st of December!

2nd blog giveaway

Good luck!

On the Eleventh Day of Christmas my True Love Gave to Me…

11 cats!

I know this is a total cop-out post but this is finals week and I spent all day in the library working on a take home test that I still need to finish tonight. Either way, be sure to check here on Tuesday for something fun 🙂


1. IMG_5667




3. Twins!







6. My visit to the kitten nursery this summer.



7. This is my cousins’ cat! He’s 19!



8. This was the night I came home from DC after being gone all summer.



9. This is why is took me a good two weeks to unpack once I came home from DC…

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