Very Berry Shakeology Protein Power Bars

I’ve found a lot of Shakeology bar recipes for chocolate and vanilla flavors but not many for Strawberry, so I wanted to come up with one!

I am a huge fan of these power bars because they are packed with protein. I also love the Nuts ‘n More cranberry sesame nut butter because it has whey and it has cranberries in it! But you can use whatever nut butter you prefer. Hope you enjoy!

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1 scoop Strawberry Shakeology

1/2 cup sliced almonds

2 cups quick oats

3/4 of a cup Canberry Sesame Nut ‘n More Nut Butter – or nut butter of choice

1/2 cup Almond Milk


1. Mix Shakeology, almonds and quick oats in a large bowl.

2. Add nut butter and mix together well.

3. Add almond milk – it should make the mixture moist.

4. Put the mixture in an 8″ by 8″ baking dish and chill for 30 minutes.

5. Cut into squares and enjoy!!!

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All About the 21 Day Fix Extreme Challenge…

Hi everyone!

So a lot of you have been asking me about the 21 Day Health Challenge I’m going to be running on Facebook!

Honeycomb (1)The Challenge centers around 21 Day Fix Extreme, a BeachBody program that comes with an easy to follow nutrition component and daily fitness DVDs!

Check out this video where I explain more about it:

21 Day Fix Extreme has become one of my favorite programs because it’s relatively short and you get results FAST!

I’m doing 21 Day Fix Extreme right now with a group of people who are all seeing amazing results on the scale, but also in that their clothes are fitting better and they are more confident!!

If you are interested in trying this program I would love to talk to you more about it! Please add me as a friend on Facebook: so we can talk about your fitness goals and if 21 Day Fix Extreme is the right choice for you!

I look forward to keeping you accountable and supporting you every step of the way!!


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5 Steps to Finding Your ‘Aha Moment’

In the weight loss world (or I guess just the post-Oprah Winfrey world) a lot of people talk about their “aha” moment when they knew they had to make a change in their lives to get healthier.

Mine was in 2010 after I was Facebooking and aw some pictures of myself that I hated:

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How did that happen? How did I allow myself to get to this horrible place where I hated how I looked and I was uncomfortable in my own body? The girl in those photos did not accurately represent who I really was on the inside.

I hated what I saw so much, and because of that I was driven and motivated to make a change. I wanted it so badly and I was willing to make all the sacrificed I knew I needed to make to be successful.

But do you really want to get healthier? For so long I spent a lot of time on the fence. I knew I wanted a healthier lifestyle but I didn’t necessarily want to put the work into it. And I didn’t know where to start. (I should have started by putting down the pizza.) But then I had my “aha moment” and I got it. 

Here are my 5 steps to finding your aha moment:

1. Make goals for yourself. I know this sounds like a no-brainer, but really sit down and write three goals for yourself that relate to your health and fitness, Make them measurable. Make them things you think you would be reasonably capable of, but things you want with a passion.  Think about things that you feel would be so incredibly awesome and would make you so happy if they happened. Here are some examples:

*I would be SOOO happy to finish a half marathon.

*I would be ecstatic to fit into my skinny jeans.

*I would be over the moon if I lost 30lbs.

2. Think about the State of your Health. You’ve heard of the State of the Union, so – and I’m completely serious when I say I want you to sit down with a pen and paper and write – and write a few sentences about the State of Your Health.

How do you feel in your body currently? Are you proud of your body, or are you insecure? Do you happy to be in pictures or do you conveniently hide parts of your body? Do you avoid mirrors? Do you feel out of control of your health? Really dig and write about how you are feeling. Here was mine from 2010:

*I feel uncomfortable in my own body

*I hate most of the pictures that are taken of me

*I don’t know how to stop spiraling out of control with the food I’m eating

*I avoid pictures  as much as possible because I hate my double chin

*I dress in a way that I feel (hope) makes me look thinner and I constantly worry about how I can make myself look thinner with clothes, in pictures, etc.

*I have anxiety and insecurities when it comes to being around friends of mine who are healthy because I know I am not on their level

3. Write your why. So now that you know where you are in life and where you want to go, what you need next is your why. Why do you want to reach your goals? It will probably tie into the State of Your Health a little bit, but take some time to think about why you want what you want.

My why for being healthy:

I cannot continue on this self-destructive path. I do not want to look at pictures of myself and hate what I see, because I feel the person in those pictures is not truly who I am. I do not want to accept those pictures as who I am. I want to feel confident about my body. I want to be able to shop in stores that carry my size because I’m wearing a normal size and not a plus size. I do not want to worry about being able to find clothes in a certain store. I do not want to worry about whether an article of clothing makes me look fat or about how I can make myself look thinner. I do not want to be constantly insecure around other women because of how I look, and how different I look from them. I want my body to be an example of how strong I am on the inside.

4. Get ready to do work. Here’s the thing: nobody can want this for you. Nobody can do the work for you. As a fitness coach, I know I can’t work with anyone “on the fence.” You have to want it for yourself. And it does require work. You will need to make sacrifices to get what you want. You will need to work hard at the gym and in the kitchen. You will need to make yourself as a priority in your own life, because that is what it requires. If you’re not ready to make yourself a priority, make some sacrifices and do some work, you aren’t ready for the journey.

And if you’re ready, and you’ve got nothing left to lose and you’ve got a fire in your belly, let’s do this.

5. Pick three non-negotiables. These are the things you can’t live without and will have a place in your health and fitness journey, no matter what. Mine are peanut butter, bananas, and sushi. These are things I need to remain a happy human being. Of course these things in the wrong portions are not good and that is why I need to work them into my diet with moderation. For peanut butter, I need to watch portions; for bananas, I need to watch frequency; and for sushi I also watch my frequency, eating it once a week or once every two weeks.

You’ll notice alcohol is not on that list for me. I’ve cut alcohol out of my diet because I do not feel like I need alcohol; but a lot of women feel like they need alcohol, and that’s okay! It’s okay if that is one of your non-negotiables; you just need to figure out how to work it into your healthy lifestyle with moderation. You can have a glass of wine or two every week! Notice I said glass and not a bottle, and I said one or two a week, not daily or once every three days.

Decide on your three non-negotiables, list them, and right next to them, list how you will keep those non-negotiables in check, either through portion control, frequency, etc.

I hope these steps help you get more focused in your fitness journey and make you realize that you can go from miserable and uncomfortable – like I was – to confident and strong.

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Chicago Marathon Memories

I wrote this blog post over and over in my head yesterday. I had some great stuff going on, but I think I left it out there on the streets of Chicago, because now I’m finding it hard to gather my thoughts. But I don’t want to forget my experience yesterday so I am going to do my best to recount it.

There’s something about a marathon that is the ultimate test of body and mind resiliency. How much will your body give, and how much will your own mind try to sabotage you? It’s all a game with many moving parts. Mile by mile it changes.

I toed the starting line of the Chicago Marathon at 8 a.m. yesterday. I originally lined up with a 5:45 pace group which I was totally confident about at the time.

Of course I had a horrible time training for this race. I have severe plantar fasciitis in both feet, and after a cortisone shot in each foot and weeks of physical therapy, they were still screaming at me at the start line. I knew this was not going to a be a pretty 26.2.

I lost my pacing group a couple of miles in, mostly because I felt like running more than a 5:1 ratio of running/walking at the beginning. As time went on and my calves starting cramping at mile 7, I knew the day was going to be a long one. Luckily the cramping didn’t get too bad but it was enough to be annoying and slow me down.

Mile 11 really stuck out to me as a tough mile, because my injuries were killing me and I knew I had to slow down if I was going to give myself a chance to finish. As I passed the half marathon mark, I thought, wouldn’t it be so great to stop right here and now? A half marathon just seems like a walk in the park, such a great distance. But nope…I had to keep running. So I tried my best but eventually started walking around mile 14-15.

At mile 16 I finally felt like I could “count down” the last 10.2 miles instead of counting up. It’s a nice milestone to make it to and finally made it seem like I could finish, despite the fact that I wasn’t going to get anywhere near a finish time I had hoped for. Every fiber of my body from the knees down was in so much pain.

I’m not going to lie, a lot of negative thoughts entered my head during miles 16-19. Mostly – why do I keep doing this distance? I’m never going to have a great marathon. My first marathon was bombed, my second marathon was incredibly hot, and now I’m the most injured I have ever been. Why does this keep happening to me? Why won’t this ever work for me? WHEN will I get a good race and get a time I can be satisfied with? It is so frustrating.

I hit a point where I just felt like I had nothing left to give. My body was failing me. I kept pushing and pushing and it felt like I was going nowhere.

Mile 19 was a game changer. I took my iPod off because I was running through a very Spanish type of neighborhood, and everyone was out and about. The people were so amazing. They had everything a runner could ask for…tissues, water, food. They were all out in the streets dancing to music and it was such an uplifting thing just when I needed it. Randomly “Chelsea Dagger” came on their giant speakers and I took it as I sign; I silently told my injuries to F off, over and over and over again. I told them: we have 7 more miles to go, feet, so you better shut the F up because we are doing this. We are not giving up now.

I was able to push the pain out of my mind for the next few miles but my body would only allow me to move so fast. I kept feeling like I was moving faster than I actually was because of the amount of energy I was putting out; in reality I wasn’t going very fast at all. It was so weird. My body just would not listen to my mind when I told it to move. I pretty much felt this way for the rest of the race. I just did the best I could and kept moving forward. It was not a question that I would finish. I kept telling myself that.

Largely the race was as flat as advertised, of course the one exception was the .2 of the 26.2, which was up a bridge ramp, of course. But I made it.

As I walked through the finish line chute, I got some water and a sweet older man volunteer put a medal around my neck. I always get emotional at this part (not that I have a lot of experience with it, having only run 2ish marathons before this). It had just been a really, really long day, filled with unbearable physical pain. My body had failed me in the worst way and I still finished.

“I think you need a hug,” he said to me as I teared up, and he put my medal around my neck. I gladly accepted his hug and thanked him for it.

I learned a lot about myself yesterday. I learned that you can be given the worst of circumstances in any given situation and still find a way to survive, to fight your way through it. Everyone goes through struggles in life, and you will find a way. You will always find a way. The body is a resilient thing when it syncs up with your mind.

Now that it’s over, I know my body needs rest…a lot of rest. I need to respect that aspect of my recovery. I want to be able to run well into my 70s and 80s, and that means I need to take care of myself now. And that’s okay with me 🙂

Until next time, 26.2…much love, much respect.

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Running Bucket List

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged (shame on me) but I’m back in action. It’s been on my mind a lot lately, so I wanted to start writing more! I’ve seen some great stuff lately and it has really made me miss writing on a regular basis.

Anyway since I’ve never done this, I wanted to make a list of my racing bucket list. Since I’ve checked off Boston and (soon to be) Chicago in about two weeks, I have been thinking about what could be next for me. Even though getting it all done may take an entire lifetime, here are some of the races I’d really like to run.

1. Marine Corps Marathon. This one always falls near or even on my birthday, and what better way to ring in another year of life than running 26.2 miles in a city as great as Washington DC?

2. Big Sur International Marathon. I’m absolutely terrified of heights but the views in this marathon would make facing my fears totally worth it. The course also sounds kind of challenging and it has a time limit which kind of scares me.

3. New York City Marathon. I want to add another World Marathon Major to my list! Chances are I won’t get to Tokyo or Berlin (or maybe even London) so to get all three in the United States finished would be pretty cool.

4. Pell Bridge Run. Again with the absolutely terrifying but awesome views. This one is in my “kinda” home state of Rhode Island and unless things change on my end, I plan on being in Jamaica this year during the race, which also is the day before my birthday this year.

5. Napa to Sonoma Wine Country Half Marathon.  Wine and running are two of my favorite things so I’m really not sure how I haven’t taken more of an initiative on this yet.

6. A Disney race. For someone who loves Disney as much as I do, I have never done a Disney race. Marathon, half marathon, the Goofy, the Dopey, I don’t care, I’d do it all! How can you be sad when you’re running with Mickey Mouse?

7. A sprint triathlon. Doesn’t matter when or where, but hopefully next season I’ll get to do one.

8. Hot Chocolate 5 / 15k. I mean really guys…come to Boston. This sounds amazing. What are you waiting for?

What’s on your running bucket list?

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Thankful: Hockey Player Edition

We all have a lot to be thankful for, but I think anyone in the hockey business – whether you play in it, work in it, or both – can take some time and reflect on all they have to be thankful for. Here are some things that ring true in my life, I’m sure you can relate!

1. A husband who understands my need to feed my passion for the sport.



Working in hockey means working LONG and crazy hours, and I often work split shifts (office during the day, rink at night) in addition to junior games on the weekend. That means I’m in and out of the house a lot and sometimes it feels like our quality time together can suffer because of the amount of time I spend at the rink. Luckily my husband understands and supports me following my passion. Even as a hockey player –  going to the rink once a week to play YOUR game is important, and if you have a spouse and/or family who understands your need to get out there and escape from normal life into hockey – that is definitely something to be thankful for. 

2. An amazing group of group of friends.



Nobody understands you quite like the people you play hockey with. The friendships I’ve made are pretty amazing.  I’m so thankful that I can go to the rink on Tuesdays and see all my favorite girls!

3. My job. I’m thankful to have one to begin with, but thankful to get paid to do what I love. Sometimes it just amazes me.

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My juniors – my main guys! I spend my weekends making sure everyone is updated on what is going on in the world of Northern States Junior Hockey League, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

4. My health.

I’m coming up on a personal milestone of three years since I decided to get healthy. Through hockey, running, and not eating garbage, I’ve lost 70ish pounds and kept it off (minus some fluctuation, which is normal, unfortunately…haha). It’s not always easy, that’s for sure, but sometimes you just come to the realization that you have to make health a priority. 


 Sometimes you need to remember where you were to appreciate how far you’ve come. 

Obviously lots more things to be thankful for – but those are just a few of the things on my mind today. Happy Thanksgiving!





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Four months later….

I remember thinking on my run this morning that the marathon was on a day just like today. It’s been an unseasonably chilly August, but I’m not complaining. It was just like today – one of those days with a brisk morning, comfortable for running but otherwise might require a light jacket.

When “Thift Shop” by Macklemore came on my iPod as I was running by the Merrimack River, in my head I was suddenly back at Athlete’s Village in Hopkinton. I remember that song playing on the loudspeakers and thousands of runners laid out on their blankets and trash bags, reading, stretching out or standing in line for the porta potty. I remember looking around, feeling overwhelmed at the volume of people there. Where do I check my bag? Where do I find the church where Dana Farber runners gather? Should I get in line for the porta potty again?

I remember following some fellow runners to the church and checking my phone one last time. It was a text from my sister telling me she’d see me at Wellesley Public Library but she’d have to leave in the afternoon because she had a meeting at work. I didn’t think she’d see me running because I was in one of the very last waves in the race. I told her not to worry about it if I didn’t see her, and tried not to get my hopes up. I turned off my phone and put it in my bag, and then checked it. I wouldn’t see it again until I picked up my bag and medal three days later in a much different city of Boston.

As I kept running, I was trying to remember the happy moments from that day. When I saw my sister’s face at Wellesley Library I was so thrilled. My parents were on vacation in Florida and I knew I was going to have friends at the finish line, but seeing friends and family on the course is so special. You just see a familiar face and know that at least for that moment, everything is okay. It is something I will never forget. I will always feel touched that she stuck around to watch me run by her, despite it taking me what probably felt like forever for me to get to mile 13.

I remembered running through the Wellesley scream tunnel. I can’t put it into words except that it made me feel like a rockstar. It was so uplifting…the whole entire mile of girls just screaming your name at the top of their lungs. It pushed me through and after I remember thinking that I would run Boston over and over again just for that mile.

Unfortunately that’s really where the happy memories end for that day. I am reminded of the chaos after I got to mile 20. The tears in the days to follow.

I remember finally getting to my phone that I’d checked after my trip into Boston and listening to a frantic voicemail from my fiancee. He thought I was in an earlier wave that day, so he thought I would have been finishing around the time the bombs went off. I listened to the first few seconds and deleted it. He was talking on my voicemail thinking his future wife could be dead.

Then I remembered the Rolling Stone cover. I remembered the bomber’s recent arraignment. My stomach churned. I remembered the nightmare I had just two days prior to seeing that magazine cover…the Boston Marathon bomber, trying to kill me.

I am reminded that the bomber is being held about a mile from where my fiancee works at Ft. Devens.

My thoughts shift to the victims. I became thankful that I wasn’t killed, or hurt, and that I could still run. So thankful that I can run. I love it so much. I am reminded that my problems could be worse.

I thought about next year. Registration for those who didn’t finish is August 19. What will the 2014 Boston Marathon hold for me? My mind wanders visualizing what it will be like. I find myself running with a smile on my face.

I thought about the word I had written on my arm that day, meant to be my mantra to get me through the marathon: “believe.”

Next April I don’t have to write my new mantra on my arm. It’s already there.


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