Monday, September 22, 2014

Kayla’s Zucchini Avo-Fredo (Alfredo)

Hello everyone!

Last night I was scrambling for something to eat for dinner.  I had no idea what to make, I was getting hungrier by the minute, and I needed something quick and easy.

No big deal right?

Well, I took to Pintrest.  Naturally. 

What I found was a whole lot of Gluten Free imitation versions of casseroles that made me go… ICK!  The tricky thing with gluten free versions of gluten ridden foods, is they often have higher calorie, carb, and additive numbers.  I wanted something fast, but I didn’t want to sacrifice quality or nutrition.

I found inspiration from a few different recipes and came up with something that I thought I would enjoy!  Here is my recipe, I hope you enjoy!

Kayla’s Zucchini Avo-Fredo (Alfredo)
Serves 2
-          ½ medium avocado
-          2 tbsp ricotta cheese
-          1 handful fresh basil
-          ¼ cup Chicken stock
o   Used to thin out the sauce.  You want it to coat the back of a spoon, but not too thick
-          2 tsp lemon juice
-          Sea salt

-          1-2 medium zucchinis
o   Made zucchini noodles with your zucchinis
-          1 medium tomato

-          1 chicken breast

-          Make noodles out of your zucchini, set aside
-          Chop your tomato, set aside
-          In a Vitamix Blender, add:
o   Basil
o   Avocado
o   Lemon juice
o   Half of the amount of chicken stock
-          Blend until thick and smooth
-          Add in your ricotta cheese, blend
-          If needed, add remaining chicken stock
o   You want your sauce to be thick and creamy, not soupy!
-          Warm a large saucepan on medium heat
-          Add your Avo-Fredo sauce and gently warm
-          Once warmed through, add your zucchini and toss in the sauce until coated and zucchini warmed through
o   You still want some crunch to the zucchini
-          Toss fresh tomatoes in
-          If you are using chicken, toss in your chopped, cooked chicken breast
-          PLATE AND ENJOY!

This was absolutely DELICIOUS and tasted just like Fettuccini Alfredo, my fave pasta dish!  It was creamy, dreamy, and very satisfying!  I used 1 medium zucchini and 1 chicken breast and ate all of it.  It was fantastic!

Please let me know if you try it and what you think!



Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Breakfast Smoothie

Hey everyone!

Thought I would share a new recipe for a delicious breakfast smoothie!


1 red apple
1 banana
Greek yogurt
Almond milk
Ground cinnamon
Almond butter
Protein powder of your choice

Chop the apple and add ingredients to a blender (I use the Vitamix). Blend until you reach the consistency you like!

It tastes and smells like apple fritters from the St. Jacobs Farmers Market!

Very filling and absolutely delicious!!!

Enjoy :)

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Why do I write the way I do?

Hey everyone,

I have had a few people comment on my writing style, so I just thought I would talk a bit more about my style and who I think about when I write.  My style is relaxed and “conversational”.  I don’t want you to feel like you are reading a novel, more like you are sitting down and talking to me.  I write very similarly to the way I speak.  My English degree does not help me here :)

Before I began my journey, I would turn to the internet for inspiration.  I mainly found that in women who had already reached their fitness goals.  I could not find a blog or photos from women that were “in progress”.  I didn’t like that very much.  When I began my journey, I wanted to be that person for someone who wasn’t “there” yet, and wanted to read about the process.  You must enjoy the process, it is not just about the finish line. 

Whether you are at the very beginning of your journey or nearing the end, I hope that you find inspiration here :)

Thank you for reading,


Friday, May 30, 2014

Bootcamp, Self Esteem, and Body Image

Hey everyone,

Wow, what an incredible 6 weeks!  Bootcamp ended last night and I was filled with SO many emotions.  Last night we did hill runs, walking lunges up hill, and even walking/running backward uphill.  It was hard, probably my hardest workout ever during those 6 weeks.  I pushed myself and groaned and cursed but when the hour was up I felt SO accomplished!  I know many of the girls felt the same.  #FUManhole

Once I got back to my car after we finished training, I was overcome with emotion.  I was so grateful for the women I now call friends and for my Coach, Sandra.  These ladies push each other and cheer each other on, it is so heartwarming.  Thank you for that :)  I also felt so proud of myself (and this is hard to admit because I feel like I am bragging, but I think I need to get over that…), it was a very challenging workout and I paced myself but I never gave up.  I am learning with each passing day that I am strong, mentally and physically.  I can push myself further and harder than I ever thought possible.  I felt like nothing could stop me, I felt like a warrior.

They say that it is your mind that actually stops you from pushing past your comfort zone, not your body.  It is SO true.  My legs were shaking, my knee was tight, and my lungs felt like they might explode; but I was OK.  I could safely push on and give it 100%.  My mind was telling me I should slow down or take a breather, but I knew I was OK.  I guess I am learning to listen to my body, not just my mind. 

Joining Sandra’s bootcamp is easily one of the best decisions I have made on my Health & Fitness Journey.  I have truly learned so much about myself in the last 6 weeks and I am really looking forward to starting up again on June 17th!  I can’t wait to see what goals we can achieve over the summer!

Now, there is another thing I wanted to talk about.  If you follow me on Facebook you may remember I had a “Light bulb Moment” about loving your body.  This was all sparked by a Kickstarter video shared by Taryn Brumfitt.  She shares her story, which is all too familiar, about not loving her body.  It affects her relationships and social life.  Sound familiar?  It does to me.  She thought she was alone, so she decided to ask 100 women to describe their bodies in one word.  The responses brought tears to my eyes… wobbly, imperfect, stumpy, very average, not nice to look at, gross, disgusting, disgusting, disgusting…  Taryn realized that she had an even bigger issue on her hands.  She had a young daughter and she wondered how she would teach that little girl to love her body, if she didn’t even love her own.  She entered herself into a body building competition and achieved the “perfect body” but quickly realized that the outside is only half of the battle.  Nothing changed about the way she looked at herself or how she felt about her body.  It is just as much a mental change as it is physical.  She decided to start a movement; The Body Image Movement.  Taryn wants women to start loving their bodies just as they are right this very moment.  EveryBODY is beautiful.  It starts from within; you need to learn to love, embrace, and accept your body exactly the way it looks and feels right now.  That’s not to say you can’t improve the exterior by going to the gym or doing yoga etc.  There is nothing wrong with that.  It is all up to you, but just remember that it starts on the inside first.  You can achieve the “perfect” body, but if you haven’t spent the time to love yourself, flaws and all, nothing will change.  You will still find something “wrong” with yourself. 

Her video really got me thinking, but it was the comments section of her video that truly lit a fire within me.  There were so many trolls saying that she was promoting an unhealthy lifestyle by telling “fat people” to love themselves.  It crushed me!  Everyone and everyBODY is deserving of love no matter what size, shape, colour, or gender.  Taryn was not suggesting that everyone throw caution to the wind and stuff their faces without regard for their health.  No matter what the scale says, you are beautiful and you should love your body. 

My journey has never been about reaching a certain number on the scale or a certain dress size.  I just want to be healthy and happy and have the outside match the inside.  I am getting there, one day at a time!  It is very exciting and I am having a lot of fun on this ride.  It is hard but it is so worth it :)  I love my body and I am so thankful for it.  I treat my body with respect now; I eat well, exercise, and have realistic expectations and goals.  This is a lifestyle change for me and I have never been happier!

If you take only one thing from this post, I hope it is this… You are beautiful, just as you are.  You don’t need makeup or Spanx to achieve it.  You are already beautiful.  Take a look at yourself and remove the cruel, judgmental lens.  Embrace the body you have, be grateful for it and love it. 


Tuesday, May 6, 2014


Bootcamp - May 6

Wow where do I begin!  Tonight was absolutely amazing.  We did some circuit work tonight and one of the things we had to do was pull-ups. Now, I will be the first to admit that those are not my strong suit. Sandra was with me every step of the way, but she made me do the work. She was there when I needed her but she wasn't going to make it easy. That's not her style. She teaches you to believe in yourself and have faith that you will succeed. My legs were shaking like there was an earthquake under my feet. I was terrified, but that wasn't going to stop me. I immediately thought of one of my Instagram posts - NO FUCKING LIMITS!  #GoHard

So that's what I did. It wasn't pretty, it wasn't a 10/10 but I did it and I am so proud of myself!  I knew deep down that I wasn't going to let myself fall. But it was very comforting knowing I had my coach right behind me. I could hear her whispering and encouraging me. It meant more than I can put into words. Thank you :)

I nearly burst into tears when so many of the bootcamp girls gave me a high five or said encouraging words to me. I was blown away by their kindness and support. Everyone is so quick to cheer each other on, it was heartwarming :)

Near the end of the night we were pushing the sled outside, one at a time and surprisingly I wasn't nervous at all. The old me would've been way to nervous to do the task and I probably would've purposely sucked at it as to not draw attention to myself. Twisted eh?  Nah not anymore!  I pushed that thing with all of my might and got a lineup of high fives when I was done!  It felt amazing!  I absolutely love bootcamp. I love the challenge AND I love making new friends!  I don't want this last part to sound sappy, but I have never had people cheer me on before. It's largely because I didn't do sports or anything as a kid so the support of a team feels absolutely incredible. Thank you ladies!  I hope I can encourage you just as much :)

My final fave of the night was looking at my palms and realizing I was getting my callouses back. I wear them like a badge of honour. I love them. They are a physical reminder of how hard I am pushing myself. I don't really care if anyone else likes them or thinks they are gross. They are cool to me :)

Tonight was really challenging but it was also so much fun. I had a great night and I cannot wait for Thursday :) I can't wait to see what other challenges I can face and accomplish!

I also posted another picture on Instagram saying that Fear is a Liar and it is SO true!  My fear used to hold me back in so many parts of my life. Fear is alike a little birdie in your ear telling you that you can't do it. But please don't believe it. Don't listen to your fear, it's all lies. If you want something and you are scared; that's ok!  Do your best, push hard. But never give up. Heck I even signed up for my first 5K on my birthday (June 14). Can I run that much?  No way!  Am I going to try?  Yes, absolutely!  I know I will walk a lot of it, but that isn't what matters. I am setting goals and demolishing them. I am saying yes when my fear wants me to say no. It is changing my LIFE. I have never been happier and I'm not even close to my goal weight or physique. Suddenly my body isn't what determines my happiness (I always used to think that I'd be happy when I was "skinny"). I decided to be happy by choosing to say YES more often.

If you can take one thing from this, please let it be this. You have one life - please don't let your fear limit how you live it. Say yes even when you are afraid (within reason of course lol) and start LIVING :) try something new. Do something you might normally shy away from. Soon you will realize that you CAN do it!  Whatever you put your mind to. You can accomplish :)


Friday, March 7, 2014

Bootcamp with Sandra Compton

Hey everyone!

Wow, what an incredible week!  Everything from my toes to my eyelashes hurt from bootcamp, but I love it!  Initially I wasn’t going to write about my experience until after the 6 weeks were over, but there is just too much to say.  I would end up writing a novel if I waited! 

So I guess I should begin with how I decided to do Sandra’s bootcamp.  She has been telling me about it for a very long time.  It always sounded so nice, but for other people.  I was too scared to join!  I thought I had to be fit to do a bootcamp.  I didn’t think I would be able to do it, so why bother signing up for something if you already “know” you are going to fail?  Right?  WRONG!

Sandra and I went for coffee and had a major gab session which ended in me telling her I would do her bootcamp :)  I was still scared out of my mind, but I decided I needed her help to achieve my fitness goals.  Then Sylvia shared that poster (Bootcamp Poster) on Facebook and she asked “Who is coming with me?!” and I decided to make the commitment (you know, Facebook Official LOL) and I commented saying that I would see her there!  Immediately I went out and bought some tops and new socks.  What can I say, I love shopping, for any reason.  Going to bootcamp?  You need some new socks, girl.  Yup, I said it!

I paid the fees and then started bootcamp on March 4th!

When I walked in the doors, I was certain that I wouldn’t know anyone but there was Jennifer and she gave me a hug and welcomed me.  It was so nice to see a familiar face as soon as I walked in!  I ended up knowing quite a few ladies, so that was really nice!  Although it doesn’t much matter, in case you are a newbie considering coming to the next session of bootcamp, and don’t know anyone, you are so busy doing your own thing, that you don’t have a chance to feel like a loaner :P

Our first task was to run 5 laps and I thought ok let’s go balls to the wall!  Bad idea lol.  I was toast after 2 laps.  I brought myself back to reality and reminded myself that I needed to ease into things.  Slow and steady wins the race, right?

Sandra offered many encouraging words throughout the evening – one of my favourites being: “Do not cheat yourself; this is YOUR workout, not mine!”  It made me push myself that extra bit further.  She was right; I shouldn’t cheat myself out of a great workout and the results that will inevitably follow, by half-assing it.  I needed to find my comfort zone and safely push past it.  I won’t get the results I want, unless I FIGHT for it!  I ended that first night of bootcamp in happy tears.  It was really hard but there I was; I finished!  I didn’t sit anything out, I didn’t let my insecurities get in the way of my goals and my dreams.  I made a promise to myself and I was sticking with it.  It felt so good :)

I had two bubble baths between Tuesday night and Thursday night; wow I was so sore!  But I LOVED it!  It was a reminder of the effort I put into my workout and it made me feel proud!

Then we had our second night, just this past Thursday and I was pumped.  Aside from the stinky boxing gloves (inner germaphobe FREAKING OUT here!) it was an incredible night.  We worked together and pushed each other to succeed.  It truly is a team of incredible women in there who are all working toward the same goal.  We ended the night with some yoga and this is where it hit me.  I had a new found respect for my coach.  I absolutely love Sandra and truly believe that she was put in my life for a reason.  And on Thursday night it clicked and I realized I hadn’t seen her in her element before.  I had only heard her talk about it.  It was beautiful and I could feel how passionate she is about her calling in life.  At that moment, during yoga, the tears began to silently fall and I was just overcome with emotion, adoration, and respect for my friend.  I am blessed to call her my friend and grateful to call her my coach.  I wouldn’t want anyone other than her beside me through this journey – love you girl!

Then there is Peaches ;) Girl, you make me laugh and make me feel SO comfortable, THANK YOU!  I told you that I think I can learn a lot from you, and I meant it.  Even though we haven’t known each other that long, I feel like you are the big sister I never had and that you are going to teach me how to be more sure of myself and be a little crazy – not so sweet and quiet all the time lol!  On the first night of bootcamp, I was one of the last to finish my walking lunges and even though you were done with your 3 laps, you came back and did them with me to the finish line so I didn’t finish alone.  You will never know how much that meant to me.  I truly appreciate your friendship, and I hope it lasts a lifetime!

Ladies, if any of you reading this are looking for a way to get out there and get healthy – I highly recommend that you join the next session of bootcamp.  I know I have only been at it for one week, but I guarantee if you sign up, you won’t regret it.  I don't need 5 more weeks to be confident in that statement.  This is a team of women who are here to support each other and work on their goals.  There is no drama, no BS.  It is hard, but if you come in ready to give it your all, you will have an entire room filled with women who will help you achieve your goals – you never finish alone.

To all of the ladies attending this session of camp, I really look forward to getting to know you better :)



Thursday, February 27, 2014


OK, it is story time…Last week I was at an event and had an unfortunate encounter with a tray of red wine.  It went everywhere.  I understand shit happens, but it is how you handle it that makes all the difference.

It was handled poorly by the person who spilled the tray on me and, in my opinion; management has also done a poor job of handling this.

For the first time in my life I have experienced what feels like inferiority because of my gender.  It’s a bold statement, I know.  When conversing with the management at this establishment – we will call it Venue A – I felt like I was being brushed off, not taken seriously.  It really bothered me!  My father knows the president of Venue A and once they began talking, I was completely cut out of the conversation.  It was no longer about me, it was all about him.  They wouldn't address me; they didn't ask what I thought.  I was no longer a key player here.  This is MY STUFF we are talking about here and somehow I have been pushed out of the conversation.

In my gut it feels like Venue A just wants the “men to talk it over” and leave the “emotional one” out of it.

Even when they came to pick up my damaged items at the office, they didn’t acknowledge me.  At first I thought it was because I hadn't introduced myself – fair enough.  But once I said OK here is my purse, wallet, and shoes… still nothing!  Shook my father’s hand, but not mine.It bothers me that I wasn't able to get anywhere with Venue A and it required my father’s involvement to make any headway.  I am a strong woman who should be able to handle her own business!

This has sparked a fire in me and a lot of things are going to start changing!  As you might know, I am starting bootcamp with Sandra on Tuesday March 4th and I decided this was my time.  I am finally going to give it 100% and stick with it until I get the body I know is hiding under there.  But this will also be an attitude change for me.  

I have always loved this quote from Zooey Deschanel –

I have always been the nice girl and while that won’t change, my “vibe” will.  I vow to work on my health, fitness, body, mind, and spirit.  I will always be nice, but there will no longer be any question regarding my strength as a person.  I will continue to be tender and open.  I will cry if something moves me to do so, I wont change any of that.  

I have so many goals and plans for bootcamp, it is really an exciting time for me and marks a new chapter in my life.  Things are going to change – physically and mentally – I hope you stick by me through the journey and go along for the ride with me!

This post doesn’t say everything I want to say about Venue A… but I vented enough to be able to draw a connection and find meaning in the situation and find a way to better myself as a result.  That is enough for me :)

Life is all about finding ways to learn lessons from your experiences and coming out of the situation a better person. 

I hope that everything works out with my personal belongings and starting today, I will be taking lead on all conversations going forward.  I am not one to be hushed any longer…