February Favorites

Happy Monday, fresh start to a new week and {almost} Spring! Have you seen all the butterflies flying around? San Diego has had them all over the city had me so happy and excited about what this season has to bring – new beginnings, more colors outside, more sunshine and more daylight in the day.

If you are new here, every month I share my favorite products that helped make my life a little better or a little more fun. I did a video on my January favorites here.

I am so excited to share my monthly faves for February and hope that they get you inspired for the season!

  1. Siete Foods Grain-Free Chips – The Mexicana in me dances inside with these! It’s almost impossible to miss these on my Instagram stories lately, but these chips have been life-changing. As I am on my {slow} journey to try and leave all processed flour, it has gotten tougher and tougher when I can’t have my tortillas or chips with guac. These chips have allowed me to still keep some Mexican in me and have my chips and guac. The even better news is that the brand used to only be online, but now it is in Ralph’s and Costco (that I have seen). They taste like normal tortilla chips and are UH-MAZING!IMG_9397.HEIC
  2. Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask – I have VERY dry skin and this mask has helped me so much because the lotion is so thick, moisturizing and soothing. I also really love the Origins brand itself because it is eco-friendly and they try to use as many naturally-existing ingredients/base for their products as possible.IMG_9399.HEIC
  3. Origins Super Spot Remover – This product has really helped me with active blemishes. When I wash my face at night, I put on my moisturizer {above} then add this on to the pimples that I have either just popped, or I feel are coming up.  The next morning there is a significant reduction in swelling and growth. This product especially becomes relevant as we start sweating more in the spring weather,
  4. Cutwater Lime Margarita – Like I said.. The sun is coming out, and so are the parties! I found this canned margarita which is super delicious and gluten-free! They are sold in 4-packs, and although pricey (typically $15), they are 12.5% alcohol, so you definitely don’t need any more than the 4 in the pack. I do not drink beer, so this is a nice alternative for tailgating, bringing to a party or even just having at home. These are sold at your local grocery store, near the other canned alcoholic beverages like the -Ritas.IMG_9395.HEIC
  5. Liquid IV – You need something to hydrate after the Margs, right? Liquid IV is SO good and so easy to use. They come in packets that you can just add to 16oz of water. Every packet provides 3x the hydration of a normal glass of water and replenishes your electrolytes. We initially bought these for our Grand Canyon camping trip, as they were referred to us, but now we just use them any day that we haven’t been drinking enough water, are hungover, or had a really tough workout. The citrus flavor is the only one I have tried and really like it.IMG_9398.HEIC
  6. Pump up song from February: Say my name – David Guetta, J Balvin and Bebe Rexha


I hope you go out and try some of these products and I am so curious to hear what you think! Leave your comments below.




Thailand Itinerary pt. 3

Hi friend!

Thank you for following along this amazing journey with me and sticking through the three part series of my Thailand Itinerary. You can see the first and second parts of this blog prior to reading this blog to learn more pre-planning and what to expect from Bangkok and Chiang Mai.

In this final blog I will focus on our last two cities which were Phuket and Phi Phi Islands. I LOVE island vacations, so I am super excited to share more about my experience here!!


  • There are three main beaches in Phuket and we stayed at Patong beach which is the most northern of them. They say this is the “least” nicest because it is the party town. We spent all our time here, and I wish we would have spent one night at Kata beach to explore it, as we heard it is the nicest one. The beaches are close enough to each other to where you can take a boat or rent a moped. The boats were too expensive for two people to rent for a day trip and I was way too terrified for a moped, so we just stayed local. We stayed at the Patong Signature Hotel which was cheap, right across the street from the beach and walking distance from Bangla Road (party street).
  • We decided to buy a tour through “Raya Princess” which was recommended to us by our hotel and it was horrible! Do not use them. Despite what the hotels may say, TripAdvisor is a great resource to use when deciding what company to book your tour with. Although the tour company wasn’t great, Raya beach was absolutely beautiful! The water was the clearest I have ever seen (I have been to the Bahamas, Cancun and Hawaii)! The only negative part about the beach is that it gets really crowded (like most tourist beaches), so I recommend you go early.


  • The next day we went on the John Grey’s Sea Canoe which was amazing! We took the starlight tour because we wanted the night activity. You start off your day with lunch and then go kayak through different caves. At night you make a Krathong, which is a little floating plant designed for you and you get to put it in the water with a little candle and make a wish. The process of making the Krathong was so awesome because we used leaves and flowers to make a little planter looking thing. We also got to see the glowing plankton at night. This is a much more simplistic version of what we saw, but it was breathtaking to be able to be kayaking through the water with the giant rocks, going through caves and making memories. The only negative on this trip was that I got a stomach ache from it. I am not sure if it was from the food (they have very fresh delicious food) or the water I was drinking. Considering everything is made on the boat, I recommend you take your own water and only eat cooked things if your stomach is delicate.


  • Once we got back, we made sure to go check out the nightlife. Bangla Road is the place to be! It is unfortunate that lady boys are so prevalent over there which promotes prostitution, but overall there were many choices in regards to bars and clubs. We walked the road once just to observe, then re-walked it to see where we should stop. Needless to say, the people watching is great! This road also had an upscale club called Illuzion that had celebrity DJ’s. Although “upscale” it was interesting because the night we went it was free cover so we went to check it out.

Phi Phi

  • Our final stop on the trip was Phi Phi Islands. We bought a ferry ticket with transport from the Phuket port to Phi Phi. This also included a shuttle when we got back from the islands to take us to the airport which is approximately 1 hour away. One thing to note about ‘Thai time” is that they generally run 10-15 minutes late, so if you are running a little late, you should be fine.
  • Once in Phi Phi, we took another small boat to our hotel at the Viking Nature Resort and walked into the town which was about 15 minutes away during the day and about 25 minutes away in the dark because of all the uneven pavement and lack of lighting. The resort itself was pretty cool and creepy at the same time! I was insistent on staying in a treehouse and that is what I got – a treehouse. It was pretty cool the way things were put together, but there wasn’t a high level of security with your room so I would recommend to take a lock with your luggage; although we and our things were 100% fine the whole time. There was also a chance you would have bugs in your room, which they warn you about. This was the main reason I took heavy duty bug spray and protected myself. But hey, you’re in the jungle right? We had hammocks in our room patio which was super nice and relaxing until the gecko’s were hanging out on the lamp above us LOL The resort itself also has, what felt like, a village as part of the property which is a little weird. The guys would play soccer around 5pm, and if your room was by them, you would hear their game for about an hour. I would stay here again, but only for 2 nights and spend the rest of my time in the little town/city to be closer to more activities.
  • We found out that you can Padi scuba dive through a company called PP Aquanauts. They give you a short tutorial the morning of your dive, then you get some training in the water the next day and you get let into the water. I recommend you book this tour on the first day you get to the islands because they can get booked up and they start very early. This was such an amazing experience for us because we usually only snorkel, not dive. Being that deep under water changed my perspective of the sea and I was so glad that we did it! We saw some breathtaking coral and other sea life. That night we took at cooking class at Pum’s cooking school which was also really fun to learn how to make traditional Thai dishes. During the class we met a woman who showed us around the nightlife in the town and on the beach. It was wild to see fire shows and partying all along the beach. There were bars and clubs with a variety of different music, so you will for sure find something that fits your taste. The night scene here was very wild; definitely the most wild we have ever seen. However, if you want something chill, you can also find a lounge!



Overall, this trip was in my top two favorites EVER! It was life-changing and Thailand gave me all the mystical vibes I was hoping for. I learned so much about another culture, got to try new experiences I never had before and got to fully plan our first overseas trip alone for the first time. Throughout the trip we met so many great people, so if you are someone who will travel alone, don’t worry! There are plenty of nice people along the way.

Curious to hear your thoughts about the trip and any of your favorite Thailand memories!




Thailand Itinerary pt. 2

Hey friend!

I hope that you enjoyed the first part of my Thailand itinerary and are ready for even more adventure from our trip! Today I will be sharing about the next city we visited which was Chiang Mai. I was originally going to share this in two blogs, but after writing it all out, three felt better as Phuket and Phi Phi are all water activities.

I wanted to clarify that, throughout the blog when I mention that we flew between cities, we used Air Asia for all our flights and had no issue with them. I would compare them to a Spirit Airlines in America, except a little more upscale.

Chiang Mai

  • This was where my trip really started to take a turn for the best! We took an early flight from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and stayed at a nearby hotel called Villa de Chiang Mai. It was a villa-home style and very close to the airport and other tourist areas. We very much went the economical route on this hotel, and it was a spacious, clean room so we were happy.
  • On our first day we had a scary adventure, and went to the Wat Phra That Doi Kham temple which is at the top of this mountain. It is gorgeous, but on top of this giant mountain where there was no transportation unless you had a car take you there or you were with a tour. Knowing that, we offered the Uber extra money to wait for us and told him to give us a few minutes and we would be out. He left us stranded! We didn’t really have phone service and it was getting dark, so I started to panic. Despite the fact there were many people there, they were either local or in a tour bus that wouldn’t accept us in their car. Somehow we ended up getting lucky and an Uber decided to pick us up before it got dark. Lesson learned – go with a tour group. This temple was beautiful though, and the different monuments and architecture are impressive.


  • Once back at our hotel, we went to walk the night bazaar which is overwhelmingly HUGE! It’s blocks and blocks long. We ended up at the bazaar two nights because there was so much to see. There are street vendors, food, performances and it is such a neat way to experience the Thai culture. This is also the best place to buy souvenirs, so make sure to get them all here.



  • The next day we took a tour to Chiang Rai. This was an all day tour (7:30am – 8:30pm) with 4 stops. Our first stop was at a hot spring. The hot springs were impressive, as I had never seen boiling natural water before. The odd part though was that it was in the middle of a shopping bazaar – I guess that is a good way to make money LOL. The water was SO hot that they were boiling eggs in it within a couple minutes. The next stop was the White Temple, which is the most famous in Chiang Rai. It was by far the most impressive temple we saw the entire trip. The amount of immaculate detail that was put into it, both inside and outside was so impressive. If you have a day to visit the temple, I would definitely recommend it. The next stop was the Golden Triangle which is the river where Myanmar, Thailand and Laos meet. This was more of a cool thing to see, but not a must-see in my book since we didn’t enter either of the countries, rather took a boat trip and just got off at the border of Laos at the little shops. Our final stop was at the Long Neck Karen Village. This is an absolute must-see! People in this village still live in huts and the women, per their decision (we were told) still choose to expand their necks with rings. The neck extension practice started back when women were the ones out hunting for their families. Their neck extension was intended to protect their necks from vicious animals and to look taller and more intimidating.



  • The next day we booked a rafting and elephant tour with Siam River Adventure. This was the most EPIC day of the trip. A van picks you up and takes you to the forest – the furthest place in the forest that I was able to see. You are in a very rural area whereas the other tours you see along the way have many people at them and it is more populated. The tour guide spoke limited English so it was intimidating sometimes trying to communicate with a language barrier and have no idea where you are going. However, when we arrived at the elephant camp, it was really nice and surreal to get intimate with the elephants. It took me some time to relax and realize what was going on – I was next to, and playing with a gigantic animal that I am only used to seeing at a zoo several feet away. We got to feed them, bathe them, and walk through the forest wit them. It was pure magic! We had lunch and then went rafting. Our raft was a 3 person raft which had my husband and I and our guide. He controlled the raft for us as we went through the rough spots in the water. It was amazing to be in a raft through the jungle, passing elephants- these gentle giants. It was also very safe, as there were many other guides along the tour.  
  • That night we went to dinner at a fancy restaurant called David’s Kitchen. I strongly recommend this place, as it was recommended to us. However, I didn’t know it was fine dining and you needed a reservation. Make sure you reserve in advance and have a nice outfit to wear. It is worth it! We got lucky and the owner was there, gave us a table and accepted us in flip flops (NOT the appropriate attire). He was generous and all of the dishes were AMAZING! Our favorites were the spicy fish apple salad and tuna + mango salad.
  • Our final day we decided to sleep in and head over to the airport. This airport is BUSY! Make sure you give yourself enough time to get to it and through the many confusing lines to board your plane on time. Also, if you choose to fly Air Asia, check in 24 hours in advance to sit with your partner/group for free.

Chiang Mai is a must-see and do in Thailand! I highly recommend it and it is very affordable.

I will be releasing the third and final part of this series on Thursday.







Thailand Itinerary pt. 1

Hi friend!

I am SO excited about today’s post because it is ALL about my Thailand trip and what I did over the course of 12 days! We self-planned our trip, so it was an adventure in and of itself that I wanted to share. I will be releasing all the details in two posts so I can share our Thailand 12 day itinerary and all the tips in smaller, digestible pieces.

This is one of the only trips where I kept a travel journal every step of the way and it has been a nice little reminder to ensure I keep that on my next trip. It was also one of my top two favorite trips I have EVER taken – the people were great, the prices were cheap, there was so much culture, nature, a great nightlife and overall a ton of new things we had never seen. Personally, I would have liked to stay in Phuket maybe one more day and got rid of Bangkok, but Bangkok tends to be the cheapest city to fly into, so we took advantage and spent a day there.

12 day Thailand Itinerary

  • Day 0/1 – LAX to Bangkok – red eye, arrive at 2am and get going right after a short nap
  • Day 2-3 – Chiang Mai
  • Day 4-8 – Phuket
  • Day 9-11 – Phi Phi Islands
  • Day 12 – BKK back to LAX

Getting ready to go to Thailand

I started off my journal entry to the trip talking about the things to take with you on a plane which I wrote more about in my other blog entry. A few other things that I want to add in for international flights are:

  • A face mask – You are in circulating air for hours at a time, so it it helps to keep yourself healthy. We took multiple flights within Thailand so it was even more important.
  • Stretch before you go – You will be sitting for many hours. Also make sure you force yourself to get up at least every 2 hours to ensure circulation.
  • Buy water ahead of time – The water bottles you typically get from the airlines are small. If you are a heavy water drinker like I am, getting larger bottles is worth it.

Other things to prepare:

  • Check the weather – We thought that because it wasn’t winter we didn’t need to take a jacket, but come to find out it still rains so it was worth it to pack a light rain jacket.
  • Prepare for the temples – You will need to be covered up for many of the temples, so carry socks (sometimes you also have to take off your shoes), a long skirt/pants, something that covers your shoulders and a Hydroflask if you have one to stay hydrated and allow your water to stay cool in the humid weather. This is also why it is is a good idea to carry a bag/backpack large enough to carry these extra things with you. If you get really light clothing, the bag will not need to be too big and you can roll your clothes in there.
  • Shots – Although shots aren’t required, we got ours just to be safe.
  • Food pills – We bought Travelan to take prior to eating several meals to ensure we didn’t get sick. The two times we got sick was because we ate too many consecutive meals without taking the pills.
  • Hand sanitizer – Many times there isn’t soap available, so make sure you have a way to keep your hands clean.
  • Tissue – Some bathrooms we went to didn’t have toilet paper, so take some with you in small tissues.
  • Safety – While I was there, I felt very safe although at times I did panic for my safety in uncomfortable situations (it was all in my head). It was interesting that throughout the entire trip we only saw 2 cops. Police aren’t very prevalent there, but if you have an emergency they have the tour police you can call at: 1155.
  • Phone Service – Ensure your carrier works over there. You can use Uber and make calls as needed if you have service.
  • Quick dry towel – If you are going to any of the islands or beach cities, I recommend you take one of these so that you aren’t carrying around a heavy wet towel with you.



  • We flew from LAX to BKK airport and arrived at 2am. We almost got mugged and someone tried to say they were a taxi and they were NOT! Be careful and ensure that you double check who you are riding with and if things feel fishy, they likely ARE!
  • We stayed at the Baan Wanglang Riverside hotel because we wanted to be near the Grand Palace. The view was nice and near the river, so it was nice to experience water transportation which is very prevalent there. The downside/upside is that this was in the locals area. It was in the middle of a market and a bunch of little shops. You got to see how families and businesses were ran – they woke up at 4am to start cooking so they can sell fresh food at their restaurants. There is a more touristy area but we didn’t stay there because we were more interested in being close to the Palace since we were there just for one day.
  • Grand Palace – This was our first tourist spot and by far the most intimidating, beautiful and impressive. There were thousands of people there and the lines were separated by locals and tourists. Make sure that you go into the tourist line, as it tends to be shorter. The palace itself was majestic and had so much to see and learn from. It is definitely a must-see in Thailand.
  • The Golden Buddah – This temple was OK in my view, there wasn’t a ton to see and felt more like a tourist trap.
  • Wat Arun – This is the original location of the capital and had ancient temples. It is right by Pier 2, so you can take a water taxi there. The nice thing about these tourist locations is that most of them are right by each other. One thing to keep in mind when in Bangkok is that the traffic is crazy and they have tuk tuks (mopeds), cars, trucks and bikes all sharing one lane so going from one place to another can take a long time depending on the time of day.
  • Massages – You can get a great deal on a massage. We got a full body 60 minute one for $20. Not gonna lie – they take the term “full body” very seriously and at a point I didn’t feel uncomfortable, but as soon as I told them, they stopped.
  • Food – There are so many food options! Many of them which are small restaurants or even street food. They have a lot of fresh fruit everywhere, but be careful as the water that is used to clean the fruit is not the best for you. Just always be aware of how sanitary things look. If you take a pill before eating them, you should be fine.
  • Nightlife – Bangkok’s nightlife was so much more than I expected. Khao San Road is a long boulevard with everything from small dive bars, hostels, clubs, massages, street food, fried bugs (this is very common there) and the BEST people watching. If anything, get a drink and sit down at a bar to watch all of the people walking by. We got the best Pad Thai on our trip from a street vendor here.


I hope that you enjoyed this post! I look forward to sharing more on my blog part 2 next week! 🙂


Part 2

Part 3




How journaling changed my life

Hey friend!

I cannot believe that I am officially 3 months into my blogging journey and that it has came this far. I am SO thankful to you for reading and contributing to the conversation!! My blog stemmed from two things: my desire to help people and my enjoyment of writing. I found my enjoyment through getting into journaling.

When I tried new workout plans, the trainer would always encourage me to write down my intentions for the workout plan in order to better connect to my results. I also got into journaling when I got more into personal development. Part of the journey of improving yourself, is understanding yourself. I’ve found that by writing things down I could better understand the core of what I am feeling, thinking, or even attempting to say but still searching for the words. Writing allows me to dig deep and discover things about myself that I didn’t know.

I am an extrovert. I love hanging out with my friends and documenting every moment (let’s be friends on Instagram to see all the deets), but I also take time for myself on a daily basis to get into my journal and write. If you are trying to find an outlet for stress relief, creativity or even just starting a new gratitude practice, I would strongly recommend you get into journaling.. It is life changing.

So, how do you start? Here are a few prompts you can use over the next week to begin your day writing and getting your thoughts on paper:

  1. What three things am I grateful for today?
  2. What am I most looking forward to this week?
  3. What was the trigger that got me upset this week? Is there any way I could have avoided it? How can I better deal with it next time?
  4. What is something I said recently to someone I love that I should have said in a more caring way? Write down what SHOULD have been said and correct it with the person if possible.
  5. How am I feeling today? Why?
  6. What affirmations do I need to here today to be successful?

You’ll notice that all of these questions are in very real-time, or short-term time spans. That is because you want to get more in-tune with where you are now before you start getting too deep into the past or future. These are all pretty simple prompts, but if you sit down and truly answer the question, you will find great things! You will also find yourself “blabbing” a lot in your writing and that is normal; allow you brain to dump things out and you will get to where you need to be with your journal practice.

Do you have a journal practice? What are some prompts you use to get started?




Disneyland Tips

Hey, friend!

Guess what season it is?! DISNEY SoCal season! I am a huge Disney fan and although I no longer have my passes, I still make it out every year during the Disney SoCal sale because you are getting 2 tickets for the price of 1.5. I usually get the park hopper since we don’t have kids and enjoy the rush of going on as many rides as possible while we are there. However, if you are going with children I highly recommend you save the money on getting a park hopper and get one park per day to thoroughly enjoy all rides and shows at their pace. Afterall, the kid rides and character meet and greets have the longest lines, so you will spend time there.

Here are a few tips and tricks to help you navigate the nuances of Disneyland, save some money and hopefully have a little more fun!

  1. Download the Disney App: It has improved so much over the past few years and is now an essential tool we use on our trip. You can delete it after your visit to conserve the space on your phone, but definitely make sure that you have it with you for the trip. In the app you can see what your dining options are (quick or fancy food), wait times, show times, the park maps and you can even purchase your photo package and MAXPASS. It is one easy go-to place for all the things you need for your trip.
  2. Get a MAXPASS: If you want to maximize your day, get a MAXPASS. Although Disneyland still offers free FastPass with a ticket, a MAXPASS saves you energy by not having to run from one ride to another all around the park. The concept of FastPass is that you put your ticket into a machine for your desired ride. The machine spits out a return time and you can return to that ride at that time and wait a minimal amount in line. This requires you to be running all over the park to get your next pass, and since every pass has a blackout waiting period until your next one, you cannot get all your FastPasses at once. If you are going this route, it is worth getting the FastPass for the latest ride and the two night shows, World of Color** and Fantasmic! first thing in the morning to ensure you get on the ride and get good sets for the shows. The MAXPASS is the FastPass 2.0. It costs $15 per person, per day, but it is WORTH IT! You manage all passes from your phone, without running around and you get access to all the photos you took while at the park, for free! Their photopass alone is pretty pricey, so it is worth the additional investment to get them linked in your app. You can then email them to yourself and download them. With this convenient feature, you also get to enjoy your time while at the park because you aren’t running around for your next pass.
  3. Pack snacks and water bottles: It is going to be a long day. We typically go to Disneyland for 13 hours, and need to stay fueled. You can take food into the park, so we make sure to take enough snacks to hold us over throughout the day. Don’t get me wrong – the funnel cakes are great and you should get one. However, that is just one snack in your entire day. We eat a hearty breakfast before going in so we can start our day immediately, and have snacks for the day. We also take water bottles because they have water fountains all over the park so you can easily refill. If you have a canteen, this is even better, especially in summer, so your drinks stay cool even if you buy water there.
  4. Take warm clothes, regardless of the season: In my experience, it is always cold at night. If you plan to stay past 7pm, take a jacket and/or more clothes as needed. There are lockers, so you can save your clothes there or you can carry them in your backpack. Backpacks are essential to the trip as well, to save snacks, water and your clothes.
  5. Reserve nighttime seating: If you want the ultimate experience, reserve nighttime seating to watch World of Color and Fantasmic! Reservations can typically be made 60 days in advance, and trust me.. You will need the 60 days, as everything Disney gets filled up so quickly. Ariel’s Grotto in California Adventure just got remodeled and is now Lamplight Lounge which will be the alternate, fancier seating choice for World of Color. At Disneyland, Fantasmic! has preferred seating at the Blue Bayou and River Belle Terrace restaurants.
  6. Take the girls to the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique: Yes, it is worth it! I took my sisters here and they had the ultimate princess experience. You can choose to just get their hair done, or go all out and get them a new outfit while you are there. The “fairy godmothers” that style of them are of course in character and make the experience SO fun! Reservations do need to be made in advance, so plan it ahead of time to ensure you get a spot because they fill up quickly.
  7. If you like something, buy it! Especially if it is limited edition: It has happened to my friends and I before – you see the one pin that is limited edition at 8am when you walk in, then it is sold out by noon. If it is something easily found, then you can buy it at the end of the day so that you don’t have to carry it. However, if it is limited edition, snag it while you can!
  8. Magic Morning: The SoCal pass includes one Magic Morning with your ticket, so take advantage! It allows you to enter the park one hour earlier than general admission and you can get your day started with less crowds. Use this time to go on highly-desired rides like the newest ride, or any ride in Disney’s Fantasyland (especially Peter Pan and Dumbo), as those tend to have the longest lines.

My personal must-see shows are:

  • Mickey’s Magical Map – Disneyland
  • Fantasmic! – Disneyland
  • World of Color – CA Adventure
  • Frozen/ Anything at The Hyperon Theater – CA Adventure
  • Disneyland’s parades – These are seasonal and rotate, but they are so impressive and a nice break in your day to sit down and eat.
  • California Adventures parades – These are more geared towards children, so if you are going with kids, make it a priority to watch them.

Disneyland is so magical and has so much to offer, so enjoy and savor every moment. I hope that these tips help make your next trip run smoothly and maximize your time and money.




** NOTE: World of Color is currently not operating, but once it is back on I would highly recommend it!

PS – here are some of the free photos we got with our MAXPASS.

IMG_4358IMG_4359 2IMG_4354


What workout plan is best for me?

Hi friend!!!

Happy Monday and beginning to a whole new week and end of February.. Isn’t it insane that we are already headed into the third month of the year? CRAY! I just finished my BBG 12 week workout plan and my #30daychallenge to close my rings and am so proud and pumped to keep going down this fitness journey. The end of this challenge also has me thinking about what workout plan I want to begin next\. I am working on my tri training, but strength training is also needed.

With this in mind, I wanted to focus today’s blog on talking about different gyms/workout options and about my experience with several different plans throughout the past years, as it is a common question I get when I am going to a new gym.

I most commonly get asked which gym/workout plan I think produces the best results. I would like to start by saying ALL gyms and plans WORK if YOU do! Plain and simple. If you are putting in the consistent work and are following a healthy meal plan, there is no reason why one workout plan won’t work for you vs the other. Remember, working out is truly a treat. Our bodies are strong and able enough to workout and we should be grateful for that, therefore make working out a FUN time in our days! Investing time in finding which plan makes you HAPPY and keeps your engaged is worth it!  

Here are my thoughts on different studios and workout plans which I hope will help you navigate the hundreds of classes going on right now.

  • F45  
    • Pros: It is mainly weight based. There are cardio days, but they are bodyweight and isometric type of workouts. You will get stronger and more fit by lifting. They give you workout towels and cool down towels after your workout. It is quick and only 45 minutes!
    • Cons: They only use bikes and rowers, no treadmills (for some, this is a pro). There is no cool down stretch. If you want to stay after and stretch on your own, you can but it isn’t something that is guided or done as part of the class.
    • Price: Unless there is a sale, they are the priciest gym that I have seen out there for $45 per week.
  • Orange Theory Fitness
    • Pros: You do a little bit of everything. It is a rotation of three main stations: treadmill, rower and weights. This gym helped my running pace get so much faster because of the different intervals from every class. These are pretty intense classes, so you really only need to go 4 times per week. The gym I went to had a great community, events outside of class and every 2 months there was a 90 minute class which was a nice challenge.
    • Cons: I am not a big fan of the rower; however, you will row every time. The weights are only dumbbells so you have to limit you workouts to those types of weights.
    • Price: Higher side – Typically $170/month + your initial heart rate monitor investment of $60.
  • Yoga
    • Pros: I have gone to several bikram yoga studios including Corepower and other local ones. Hot yoga is SO relaxing, challenging both to the body and mind and overall great for you. Even if you aren’t doing yoga as your primary workout, it is so helpful and needed for recovery. I hurt my ankle and went to yoga for a month and was a whole new human both inside and out because of it.
    • Cons: It is low intensity. The highest intensity class I have found was the sculpt class at Corepower which was intense, but it is yoga and lower intensity that your normal cardio class.
    • Price: Depends on the studio, but usually around $120 per month.
  • Pure Barre
    • Pros: Multiple repetitions and you get stronger with a lot of isometric work. Your booty is being worked out A LOT, so it helps in that area (which I need) for sure! You also work on your posture and breathing, which overall is great for you.
    • Cons: It is a slower paced workout. As you can tell by now, I am more of a high intensity workout person, so the classes that I took were too slow for my taste.
    • Price: $120-$140 + socks, but you can get those on your own.
  • Title Boxing
    • Pros: High intensity, dynamic moves that help release aggression and get your blood flowing. Depending on the gym, you can take classes that are more or less physical with the bags. Title isn’t just boxing. You can take boxing, kickboxing or MMA classes, all which are a mix of body weight, cardio and punching bags. Here, coaches make a big difference compared to other gyms I have attached because they are typically pushing you harder and are very encouraging which make me want to push my limits and get ouside my comfort zone. They’re even willing to take you aside and work with you on improving your technique.
    • Cons: Washing your equipment after class. I know this sounds lazy, but your hand wraps and gloves need to be washed and disinfected after class. It is just one more step that you need to take care of after class.
    • Price: Depends on the sales, but typically $70 per month + initial gloves and wraps which total can be ~$30, depending how fancy you want your gloves.
  • At-home – BBG, TIU, Beachbody (and others, but I have only tried these three)
    • Pros: You workout at your own time, at your own pace and they aren’t very long (typically). For the most part, not much equipment is needed and you can workout in the comfort of your living room not caring what you look like and nobody needs to know. It is very convenient, and there are online communities to keep you accountable. My favorite combo of these is either pure Beachbody, or BBG workouts following the TIU meal plan and recipes.
    • Cons: There are no in-person trainers to push you. If you are working out at home or following these self-guided programs, you need to motivate yourself, and/or be active on social media with these communities. If you have access to a gym and can do them there, sometimes that is better if you want to increase your weights and not spend on buying a heavier weight set.
    • Price: Depends on the plan. BBG now has the Sweat app that you can get for $20 per month, TIU also has their workout app, but not sure how much that is and it is offered in addition to SO many free resources online. Beachbody varies and I only did it back when the DVD’s existed so they vary. In addition to this, you may need a starter kit of weights and a few other things, but no more than $50.

A few ways to get started on finding what fits your schedule without spending a ton of money:

  • Classpass – they usually have a free month for new members
  • Groupon – a lot of gyms use it to give you a lower priced first month
  • Gym’s/programs actual site/app – Orange Theory only uses their one free class. Other gyms have even better sales through them, so try them directly. The at-home workouts also typically have a 1 week – 1 month free trial.

I am yet to try a cycling studio, pilates studio and Barry’s Bootcamp to review those. Have you tried them? What feedback do you have about these gyms and workout programs? What is your favorite?

Leave your comments below! 🙂






How to make chores easier

Hi, friend!

I wanted to share something that the husbie and I have been trying to get better at lately which is keeping our house clean on a more regular schedule, rather than spending our days off cleaning. It has literally been the topic of conversation more often than I would like to admit because #adultingsucks! How do people have time to have a full time job, have a side hustle, start a businesses, maintain social commitments, be healthy, make family time AND still scrub the shower and pair socks?! Like who are these super humans?! We are still trying to figure out how to make it all fit in 24 hours.. It’s hard. Our current biggest struggle is keeping the house clean without it absorbing an entire day! However, your physical environment is so important to your productivity and all facets in your life, so maintaining a clean organized home should be prioritized.

In our old home, we had a chore list that made our lives so much easier! Our house was smaller, but this list made our lives SO much manageable. We are bringing it back and are starting to see positive changes. We broke down our weekly chores by day to ensure that cleaning/keeping our home tidy doesn’t take longer than 30 minutes per day, unless it is a meal prep day. By doing small things every day, you free up your day off to do things that you actually enjoy, rather than spend hours cleaning/washing/doing all the things you need to do around the house. We don’t have a yard or weekly pet duties, but yard work and pet duties would also be listed here. You can see what a sample chart looks like in the file attached.

In addition to planning chores, we have started to organize our weeks by daily activities to maximize our time. For example, we will have two days per week set as our “working” days knowing that we will spend those working the entire afternoon. If it is not one of those days, we have the afternoon free to ourselves and either watch TV or do another hobby, meet up with friends, go to date night, etc.

By being more conscious with small daily tasks, it allows more overall flexibility and happiness in our lives. How do you stay on top of your home chores and tasks?

I hope this chart helped, and if you would like the excel format, I am more than happy to share with you, just leave a comment below 🙂

Weekly chore list




Carry-on Essentials

Hi friend!

On today’s blog post I wanted to share some of my favorite carry-ons when I travel because getting there is half the fun, right! I am not big on buying Wifi on the plane unless I have to, so I choose to plan ahead and prep some things in advance. I try to use my time on the plane to slow down and do some of my favorite things that I don’t always have time to do, so it adds more excitement, enjoyment and relaxation when traveling.

Here are a few things I take for entertainment:

  • Music – I download all my favorite songs on my phone so that I can listen to them.
  • Podcasts – I also download a couple podcasts so that I can listen to them while I am on the plane. I tend to pick longer ones, or ones that I have been wanting to go back to and take detailed notes on because there was so much great content.
  • Book or Audiobook – Depending what I am reading at the time, I will take my book with me.
  • Headphones – I like traveling with the big headphones like Beats in order to cancel out all the noise around me and just focus on what I am listening to.
  • Journal and pen – I like to take notes on my Podcasts, or just journal in general and take time to really check in with how I am feeling.
  • Coloring book and color pencils – I love to color and think it is so relaxing. I will color on the plane while listening to any of the above.
  • Plane pillow – We all need naps, so of course I pack this!

I also take a few things for personal hygiene because I have been stuck in unexpected travel conditions where I don’t have access to my bags, so I now pack an emergency hygiene kit in my carry-on of:

  • Toothbrush & toothpaste – After traveling for over 6 hours your mouth starts feeling a little weird, so take it with you! Of course check the travel regulations on the size that you can take as a carry-on.
  • Deodorant – A given!
  • Undies – If your flight is over 10 hours and you have access to airport lounges, you may want to freshen up!
  • Lotion – Both for your body and face. I really enjoy this  moisturizer. Your skin gets so dry, so make sure to take care of it.
  • Facial wipes – Another thing to ensure that your face is taken care of because being in planes for extended periods of time can be uncomfortable.
  • Lysol wipes – Just in case your seat tray is dirty or anything else is on your trip needs a little extra sanitation.

What are some things you take with you as carry-ons to help make your trip more fun and/or more comfortable?




Valentine’s Day Self-Love Challenge

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Today is the designated day to show love, but the reality is.. EVERY DAY is a great day to show love. Especially to yourself! I wanted to dedicate a post to self-care because the reality is that you cannot really love others, until you love yourself! ❤ Although today is Valentine’s Day, I challenge you to show YOURSELF some love today AND through the end of the month by completing at least 3 of the activities below! You have 2 weeks girl, you can do this! Post them on Instagram and tag me! I would love to see you take this challenge to take care of yourself!

  1. Workout! But don’t do a workout you half-like. Do something you LOVE! Dance, go for a long run, lift heavy weights, take a yoga class.. Heck! Try a new pole dancing class.. Get out there, and move your body doing something YOU LOVE!
  2. Wine and mask – Take some time aside in your day to drink some wine while your mask is on. Sheet masks are so easily available and affordable that this can be an easy one. If you rather drink sparkling water or kombucha in a wine glass, do that instead!
  3. Take a nap! Sleep is SO important to living your best life. Set some time aside on your day off to take a nap when you need it.. It’s life changing!
  4. Tell someone you love them. Yes, TELL, not text. Not just anyone.. Someone in your life that you haven’t told in a long time! Maybe it’s your brother, your aunt, your friend, your parents or even your significant other. Saying the words “I love you” are so powerful both for you and them.
  5. Journal – Take some time aside for journaling. How are you feeling? What are you grateful for? What things are making you happy right now? What are some goals you are crushing and want to recognize yourself for?
  6. Put on lipstick! Yaaaass girl! Lipstick is SO empowering. It gets so many of us out of our comfort zone but it is such a great way to make yourself stand out and show a little more boldness than your usual self. Wear it and rock it with confidence!
  7. Dress up! I don’t mean in your prom dress.. But take one night, or even day, to put a little more into your outfit for the day. Maybe wear wedges vs flats, wear a dress instead of pants, actually do your hair vs putting it up, or even just add some accessories to your outfit.
  8. Take a bath – set some time side for yourself and get in the bathtub. Get a bath bomb to make it a little more fun, or just hang out in the bath with a candle and chill.
  9. Get your nails did! Go to the nail shop to get a mani, pedi or if you prefer, paint your own nails and rock a fresh new color!
  10. Post a selfie! You are GORG! Show off that beauty and confidence with a selfie on social media. EXTRA CREDIT: Write one reason you love yourself in that post. It can be anything from having a healthy body, to having a great hair day. Show yourself some love publically.

I hope to see you tagging me in your posts and using the rest of February (including today) to love yourself!