Sideshow || Anniversary

Life, Uncategorized

Today is my three year blogiversary with WordPress! My little blog was called “This Is My Year” at the time. I have to admit that 2013 was one kickin’ year, which included a trip to Italy, my 21st birthday (but that’s another story), living in two amazing housing situations; special weddings AND graduation from college.

Pre-story! I actually had a cutie-little blog, All About Cteve, which was launched my sophomore year of college; I ended that blog mainly because I ran out of free photo space on that page (I’m Dutch, need I say more?!).

I didn’t want to be vain, though, and knowing I was coming off of an amazing high which was college, I figured it would be a bit unrealistic to call 2014 “[This Is] My Year,” too, so I went with the general “sideshow” and have decided to stick with that name, for the time being at least.

When I fell in love with Gym (see what I did there?), I cut back on the #bloglyfe BIG TIME. But I missed blogging, and I still enjoy blogging, and I’m not ready to give up blogging. That being said, my posts are indeed fewer and farther between, but I also don’t intend for them to stop anytime soon. How’s thatΒ  for vague?

So I will continue with my little life blog. Stay tuned for whatever I want to share, whether it’s health tips or silly stories and fashion or songs or some new gig I may get into some day.

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Since this is a sentimental post already, here was my 2015 best nine (left to right and then top to bottom) Meeting Love & Theft | Becoming an Auntie | Time with my family | Time with my TRIO | Florida vacation | Visits from Brittany | Quality cousin time | Having a group of “local friends” | Summer memories including Allison’s visit and baseball games.

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New Month, New Shoes!

Health

Happy Saturday, y’all! I had a great fall day enjoying the crisp air, good nutrition and a thorough past-due cleaning of my room.

On another exciting note, I had great workout featuring brand new shoes I just busted out today! I bought the shoes over a month ago while shopping at an outlet mall with my mom. I made myself wait until September to start wearing them, but then in September I decided to hold out for just one more month. You know what they say, sometimes the anticipation is the best part. So now it’s October and thanks to my new shoes, I had a really fun workout today.

I’ve been trying to do more HIIT (high intensity interval training) which is a current trend but also quite effective. I love the interval concept because it makes every exercise seem more doable. I mean, doesn’t it seem easier to do ten push-ups three times rather than thirty push-ups? And breaking up the sets makes each set more thorough.

I’m finding that variety is the spice of life. If you’re tired of HIIT, hit the weights or start training for a race! But most importantly, stay active!

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Just sayin, I think my water bottle coordinates nicely with my new kicks. πŸ™‚

XOXO — sarah

Back on the Grind

Health, Life

As much as I truly love traveling, I also love being home, having my routine, and staying healthy. I put my best efforts to be healthy away from home, but it’s hard to be healthy while away, especially with pre-made meals served and packed schedules not accommodating time for exercise and ample sleep!

The healthiest-and most delicious-part of my trip was this amazing smoothie at an awesome juice place!

The healthiest-and most delicious-part of my trip was this amazing smoothie at an awesome juice place!

My mind and body do not appreciate taking breaks from my healthy routine. However, I do think taking little breaks have their benefits. I gain a new appreciation for my healthy choices. I can’t express how happy I was to eat oatmeal and egg whites this morning! Returning to the gym felt amazing; my body felt refreshed and ready to work hard. I have new and refreshed focus.

Let me be clear – taking a health break is a little fun – but getting back on track is extremely important and quite hard.

Here’s to jumping right back on the health train and doing what’s best for my mind and body!

Brunch Me

Life

The perfect Sunday, according to me, consists of church, time spent with Kara, a good workout, and a nap. Yesterday I accomplished three of the four… the only thing missing was a nap, but I got to bed early so I ain’t even mad!

In church we sang Found In You which speaks a lot of truth in my life right now. I also got to see a few friends from small group. I love that I’m beginning to recognize and know people from church when I go.

I had a good workout at the gym. Sunday is my favorite day to work out because the gym is a lot emptier and I can do my own thing without competing for space and equipment. I finished my workout by going on a short run outside. Even though it’s not warm out, the sun was shining and the temperature was good for running.

I’m so glad Kara came to church with me. I love spending time with her! We went downtown after church for brunch. The food was delicious and the time spent together was spectacular!

I like to think the wind adds a little character to the picture. It was a breezy, beautiful day!

I like to think the wind adds a little character to the picture. It was a breezy, beautiful day!

A Review On Making The Most Of Your Twenties

Life

I love reading blogs, and one blog I’ve recently discovered is Career Girl Daily. Because I’m new to CGD I just today found one of their articles from February, called How to make the most of your twenties. I figured that would be a good post for me to read, cuz hey-I’m in my twenties! And I want to make the most of them!

The following ten items are the tips as posted (all credit to Beth from CGD) and the review is mine.

I love working out on the weekends! I have to recommend buying yourself some earbuds or headphones that won't fall out (so that you can't hear yourself "huffing and puffing")!

I love working out on the weekends! I have to recommend buying yourself some earbuds or headphones that won’t fall out (so that you can’t hear yourself “huffing and puffing”)!

  1. Try to start healthy habits. I like how she said TRY because sometimes us twenty-somethings go to concerts and they typically start at like 10pm so sometimes by 3am you’re starved and the 24 hour diner has omelets. But in all seriousness, now is the time to start healthy habits and I’m so glad I have made my health a priority-and now a lifestyle that I quite enjoy.

    Truly this guitar is a beauty. With campfire season coming up, I've gotta brush up on my skills (and by BRUSH UP, I mean ACQUIRE skills).

    Truly this guitar is a beauty. With campfire season coming up, I’ve gotta brush up on my skills (and by BRUSH UP, I mean ACQUIRE skills).

  2. Learn new things. I swear I’m not going to make all ten points be about the gym. But I did learn a lot through my training program. On another note, I bought a guitar last summer so I have some major learning-opportunities in that department. Oh, and I am constantlyyyyyy learning at work (on so many levels).
  3. Follow your dreams. Am I the only one whose dreams tend to change 24/7? Apparently dream-following is something I need to figure out in the next few years…

    Mockingjay, anyone? This dressing room situation might have had us laughing harder than ever.

    Mockingjay, anyone? This dressing room situation had us laughing harder than ever.

  4. Find your true friends. Found ’em! Without name-dropping I’m just gonna say that (1) family is forever, (2) life-time friends ARE family, and (3) new friends can be true friends, too πŸ™‚
  5. Fight the fear. The twenties-decade is filled with NEW and CHANGE – so “fighting the fear” is inevitable, in my opinion. Shout-out to my college yoga instructor for teaching me how to hold myself in ways to physically calm my body down. Smile, breathe, and keep your feet planted on the ground! #yoga4lyfe πŸ˜‰
  6. Manage your time, and money. Post college I’ve discovered that (1) I’m an “at least 8 hours of sleep person” and (2) now I have to pay for everythinggg including toilet paper. I’m working on time-management and money-management but I think both of these areas could use lifelong assessment and improvement.
  7. Breathe. Back to yoga! Beth’s point in this item was not to be too hard on yourself; this is important for me to hear! Being a twenty-something means I am still establishing myself and grounding myself, so I can-and should-give myself grace. Noted.

    Livin the twenty-somethin dream, right here.

    Livin the twenty-somethin dream, right here.

  8. Be independent. Honest moment, coming right up. I honestly think I am too independent in some areas of life… but in others I’m probably still too dependent. As in so many things, balance is key here.
  9. Be vulnerable. *Insert Secondhand Serenade song here because if you’re in your twenties you totally jammed to that song in high school or college.* Humbly asking for advice or taking responsibility for the mistakes I make is a big deal-sometimes easier said than done but important nonetheless.

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    Striking a pose as all 23 year old besties should.

  10. Have fun. No wonder I love this article! Affirmation to work hard, and play hard too. Excellent.

Everybody Loves Snacks

Health

Hey y’all let’s talk about snacks! I think my diet is sustainable thanks to the snacks I was allowed to eat. I eat a snack a few hours after each meal; usually at 10:00 and at 3:00 (and again before bedtime).

Almost every day, I eat a Dannon Greek Light & Fit yogurt-they’re high in protein, fairly low in carbs and contain only 80 calories! Bonus points because they TASTE GOOD too! And they’re gluten-free! My favorite flavor is caramel macchiato but there are other good ones out there too (honorable mentions: toasted coconut, raspberry chocolate, salted caramel).

Sometimes, when I’m feeling wild and crazy (ha), I will have other snacks that were allowed:

  1. Protein bars or granola bars
    • Make sure they’re not loaded with sugar!
    • My favorite granola bars: KIND, Skinny Girl
    • My favorite protein bars: Quest, ThinkThin
  2. Fruit
    • Berries are especially healthy
    • Blending a frozen banana with cocoa makes an excellent treat
  3. Cottage cheese
    • Go for some kind of low-fat option
  4. Other yogurt
    • Regular yogurt (as opposed to Greek) is OK too
    • Chobani has a great 100 calorie Greek option
    • Plain Greek yogurt with fresh blueberries and cinnamon is great!
  5. Apple and 1 T peanut butter
    • Fun fact: apples boost your metabolism!
    • PB2 is a great lower calorie peanut-butter option
  6. Small handful of almonds or walnuts
    • Unsalted, no added sugars, and not too many!
  7. Protein shake
    • Add water (not milk) to protein powder
    • Buy a reputable brand, from your gym or GNC
    • Taste is best when blended with ice πŸ™‚
I posted this on Instagram using the hashtag #cutefruit because let's be honest, it is what it is!

I posted this on Instagram using the hashtag #cutefruit because let’s be honest, it is what it is!

My First Day At The Gym Was Scarier Than My First Day Of High School

Health

I had no clue what I was getting into when I walked into the gym! I never priced out gyms or considered other options. I just walked in and said I wanted to join.

Part of the sign-up process was scheduling a meeting about personal training.

[I have a thing when it comes to sales – I feel like I’m being manipulated. You know at the Buckle how the employees have to set goals for what they’re gonna sell each day? I’m all, “can I try on this shirt” and they’re all, “sure but you have to try on this belt too because it would look amazinggg with the shirt.” Um…]

Turns out the guy I talked to was not your typical salesman. He was, however, your typical gym manager. Picture a tall man wearing sweatpants and a sweatshirt, and a baseball hat (and he obviously has a beard, too). He says, “All girls freaking do at the gym is go on the elliptical or tread mill” [I’m thinking: that’s what I’m planning to do] “and freaking diet” [I’m also thinking: yeah I was gonna try that too] “and they freaking expect to get RESULTS” [why else would I join the stinkin gym?!] “and they DON’T GET THE FREAKING RESULTS” [Oh].

And in that moment I realized this guy had a point! And I was not about to waste time at the gym to yield no return!

But then he talks about the pricing. Training is freaking expensive.

This guy was real with me. So I decided to be real back.

“I really want to do this. I don’t want to waste my time at the gym and get no results. But it’s really expensive and I don’t know if this is a smart choice for me.”

So he replies, “Girls spend all this money accessorizing the outsides of their bodies with clothes and stuff.” [Being somewhat of a feminist, why am I agreeing with this guy?!] “Now you need to spend the time and money on the inside of your body–accessorize the inside of your body.”

Dang. This guy knows my life! He continues,

“You spent all this money on your mind-your college education. Now you should spend money educating yourself on your body-your fitness and health.

Now I want you to go home and think about it and take your time to decide. And I’m gonna give you a session with Steven because he’s really good with girls like you. And because all of Steven’s clients reach their goals. And you can come to the session or you can skip it. Just think about it; it’s up to you.”

I went home and thought about it. I asked family and friends. Of course, I received a variety of opinions. My family was supportive, though, and I ended up committing to three months of training with Steven. I would see him twice a week. I was given a cardio workout to do on my own, and I was put on a strict diet.

Spoiler here: the financial investment was one of my best investments thus far in life. What was such a tough decision initially became one of my favorite decisions I’ve made. But you know what they say, hindsight is always 20-20.

But forrrrreal. Can I get an AMEN!?

But forrrrreal.
Can I get an AMEN!?