photo-16Lately, cycling has been my cardio workout of choice outside of the gym.  I love cycling classes because they are an intense workout, and I feel full of energy afterwards.  It sounds counterintuitive, but it is true!  Gotta love the endorphins you get after a sweaty, challenging class!  I especially love doing a cycling class in the morning or noon because I feel ready to tackle the rest of my day after I am done.

This was my first time at Beyond Pedaling.  It had been on my list to try for a while, and I was excited to “Go Beyond”.  So, last week I signed up for 9:30am class with Adria.  First off, I loved the design of the studio and the sleek Keiser bikes.  The way that the studio was lit, and the platform the instructor teaches from reminded me of being at a club listening to live music.  Kind of like a rockstar playing for an audience!  Fitting…since Adria pretty much is a rockstar instructor!  I loved how she led the class, full of energy and motivation.  Her playlist was awesome, it really pushed me along during class.  I liked that she kept us aware of our posture and body alignment throughout the class.  Sometimes I tend to stiffen up my upper body too much during cycling, but her cues to move around a bit and engage the trunk helped me keep it loose. The class was a fun mix of sprints and climbs, and included a short segment of arm/upper body movements with light dumbbells. Overall, my first experience at Beyond Pedaling was great!  I got the energy boost I needed and enjoyed the class.  Looking forward to returning soon…

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Go:  6814 Snider Plaza, University Park TX, 75205  //  Web: thebeyondstudios.com  //  Call:  214.361.1171

What I wore:  Camo Cool Racerback Tank, Cut the Crops (on sale!!), Pirouette Headband, all from Lululemon

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WHOLE 15 UPDATE!

April 22, 2014

photo-14As most of you who have been reading L&L for a while know, I have talked about the Whole 30 quite a bit.  It has been such a great thing for me and I have seen several benefits from sticking to the plan.  A couple of weeks ago I decided to do half of a Whole 30, a Whole 15, to refocus my habits.  Just a few thoughts/updates on that…

1.  It ended up lasting 9 days instead of 15, and that is okay because it served its purpose.  I wanted to get back on track, and curb those cravings for sweets.  Nine days of strict Whole 30 eating helped me do that.  I was able to renew, refocus, and reset. If you are wondering why I cut it short, basically, I was at a friend’s ranch on Friday night.  It was a perfect, beautiful Texas evening.  It just felt right to enjoy a glass of wine on the patio before dinner!  Dinner was W30 compatible, steaks and grilled veggies;-)

2.  It really never ceases to amaze me how the body responds to clean, whole foods.  For me, I feel satisfied, and my cravings for sugary treats are laid to rest.  Fruit tastes delightfully sweet enough.  Digestion is smooth, no bloating!

3.  I can truly say that I am happily “off-roading.”  For me, it is sticking close to Whole 30 guidelines most of the time, and indulging in favorite or special foods occasionally.  It has become very comfortable for me, and I love it!  One of the best attributes of this program is that it is sustainable.  It is not a quick fix, it is a healthy lifestyle!

4.  If you are thinking of doing a Whole 30 for the first time, I would not recommend doing an abbreviated version.  For your first time, you should (in my opinion) give it a full 30 days to see how your body feels and responds.  Then, after that you can experiment with what life looks like after Whole 30.  My nine days is just an example of how you can go back to the guidelines to get yourself back on track when you need it!

5.  I think I want to do another complete Whole 30 soon.  Not sure when I will start, maybe sometime in May.  I’ll keep y’all posted!

Drea-Signature

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Last week, I shared some of my favorite back exercises to add to your workout routine.  Now, time to shop for tops and dresses to show off that strong, sculpted back!  In the summertime, I like to wear tops and dresses that have fun details in the back, like cutouts, unique straps, or draping.  Here is a round-up of some pieces I have my eye on for summer, plus some great underpinnings that are pretty enough to let peek out a bit.  Just click on the images above or below for product information….

MORE TANKS:

MORE DRESSES:

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LIEBSTER AWARD

April 17, 2014

photo-12If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen my post about the Liebster Award.  Not sure how this originated, but basically it is a way to share the blogging love and discover new blogs.  How it works:  You are nominated by a blogger who follows you, and they give you some questions to answer to help others get to know you/your blog a little better.  Then, you post the answers and nominate other bloggers to do the same.  Fun!  I was nominated recently by my friend Natalie, of thirtyeightfive.  She and I  have guest posted for each other before, talking about the Whole 30 and Whole 30 Autoimmune Protocol.  Natalie’s blog is great, definitely check it out!  She writes about her health and wellness journey with Ulcerative Colitis, and her adventures in nursing (she is a trauma ICU nurse).  She also posts favorite recipes that she has created, as well as from her favorite sites and cookbooks.  I love sharing ideas and recipes with her, she always is coming up with something yummy.  We came to Paleo and Whole 30 for very different reasons, so it is interesting to hear her perspective and approach to it.  I have really enjoyed getting to know her!

Here are the questions Natalie asked me:

Q:  What motivated you to transition to a healthier/more alternative way of eating?

A:  I have always been interested in healthy eating, and when I heard about Paleo and Whole 30, I was curious.  But, I didn’t think I wanted to try it because I thought I was already eating pretty clean, and I did not have any health issues requiring me to change my diet.  Then, I read It Starts with Food” and realized that while I did eat a lot of whole, unprocessed foods, I was eating too many “diet” foods with fake ingredients.  In addition, I craved sweets/sugar often.  Another motivation was to make eating/trying new vegetables more of a priority for our family meals.

Q:  What is your favorite quick and easy meal?

A:  We all love the recipe/template for Curry fromIt Starts with Food.”  It is SO easy.  You choose the protein, type of curry, and veggies.  My fave combo is Red Curry with chicken, broccoli, red bell pepper, zucchini, and mushroom.  The sauce is made with coconut milk, so it is super creamy and delicious!  I usually make a double batch of it so we have leftovers for lunches.  A close second is Green Curry with Shrimp and whatever veggies we have on hand.

Q.  What is something you want others to know about you and your blog?

A:  I started this blog to share my passion for all things fitness and style related.  I try to post about a wide range of things that I like.  Hopefully it helps people discover ways to be active, ideas for healthy eating, and great shopping finds.  I am a mom and wife, doing my best to keep myself and my family healthy and active.

I am going to nominate two of my favorite fellow bloggers , who also happen to be sisters!  I am inspired by both of these women to be more creative in general and to keep consistent with blogging.  Here they are:

Steph @crazygoodmama:  This mama does it all, and she does it with style.  In addition to her blog, Steph has a design company, Joy Creative Shop, specializing in Graphic Design and Paper Goods.  I love, love her personalized note cards!  They are one of my fave gifts to give.  Check out her Joy Creative Etsy Shop for designs.  She has taught me so much since I began this blogging journey, and I am thankful to have her as a friend.

Kristen @inkfoods:  Kristen’s blog, Ink Foods is a one stop shop for decadent treats, ideas for decor, and helpful cooking tips.  She is a trained pastry chef, and has a knack for making a beautiful tablescape.  Kristen recently created a delicious Paleo dessert recipe for L&L.  She is so fun to work with!

I am going to keep it simple as well, and ask only 3 questions:

1.  How did you come up with the name for your blog, or is there a story behind it?

2.  What is the most important thing you want others to know about you and your blog?

3.  And just for fun, which recipe or restaurant are you loving lately?

Check out crazygoodmama.com and inkfoods.com for their answers to these questions…..

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WORK IT OUT WEDNESDAY: “BACK” TO TANKS!

April 16, 2014

One of my favorite (clothing-related) things about summer is all of the great tank and dress options out there to show off a strong back.  Whether it is strappy, racerback, halter, backless…you name it, I love it!  The only challenge is to find a compatible bra, but this season it seems that there are plenty […]

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FRIDAY FINDS: LOW WEDGES

April 11, 2014

I love sky high wedges in the summer as much as the next girl, but there are some days that call for a lower, more walkable wedge.  For example, an afternoon spent with my toddler, when I know I might be required to break into a sprint at any given moment!  Or, a day walking […]

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WHOLE 15…READY, SET, GO!

April 9, 2014

I completed my most recent Whole 30 at the end of January.  It helped me re-calibrate myself after the holidays and start off the new year right.  Since then, I have been eating Whole 30ish the majority of the time.  I don’t have any allergies or conditions that require me to eat this way.  I […]

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ON THE FRINGE…

April 7, 2014

As a child of the 80′s and 90′s, the very first time I saw Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, I fell in love with Sloane Peterson’s white leather fringe jacket.  And, her high-waisted paper bag waist shorts, but that is a whole other blog post!  I remember telling my mom that I needed that jacket!  Ever since then, I have […]

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FLYWHEEL SPORTS: JILLIAN MICHAELS & MARK SHIPMAN

April 5, 2014

Wow…can’t wait to fill you all in on this!  I was one of the lucky 45 that had the opportunity to ride with Jillian Michaels at Flywheel in Highland Park on Friday. It was amazing, to say the least!  She was in Dallas for her Maximize Your Life tour, and stopped by to teach a […]

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BODYBAR: POWER TOWER with KRISTEN HAWKINSON

April 3, 2014

This was not my first visit to bodybar in Dallas, but it had been a while since I had been in!  For my first-time experience, click here.  This time, I was invited by a friend who is a bodybar instructor, Kristen Hawkinson, to try one of her classes.  I signed up for the “Power Tower” […]

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