Life has ups and downs: We need to find the balance

This weekend was amazing and upsetting all at the same time.

After work on Friday I went out to Boston for the night and met amazing people. Over the course of the night I became frustrated and happy all at once. I got to spend time with a pretty awesome person, who may have acted a little silly after a few drinks, but all in good fun. That’s what overall health is though, the balance. Have your cocktail and pretend to be an upstanding adult. With little sleep we ventured into Saturday, the downfall came much later in the night, but there’s no need to talk about it- it’s in the past. But it influenced my Day 19: be you.

Even though it was a great day, with an awesome person, I was still having some struggles with myself. I saw this last night when I was laying in bed. I need to learn this. I need to understand this. I need to love me first and hope that someone else can love me someday too; flaws and all. When I can understand this, I can truly be happy. #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar #love #gettoknowme #ihavepersonility #immorethanmyflaws

Life is a moshposh of misunderstandings, over-communicating, running out our frustrations, under-communicating, eating healthy, binge eating pizza to heal our hearts, Jack Daniels, friends who listen to you cry on the phone, Lindt 50% off chocolate and Leo DiCaprio movies.

Day 20: friends who listen to you crying at 1030 am. Friends who let you leave voicemails at 1 am. Friends who bring you processed carbs and convince you pizza is a good idea for the night. Friends who will do shots with you and let you be a ridiculous mess because the world is too heavy for that day. Friends who remind you you’re a beautiful soul. Friends that remind you that you deserve the best. Friends that agree with you that Leo Di Caprio deserves an Oscar. #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar #love #friends #soulmates @samijimi @karinamoran_rn @kmcc89 @annranc @ccarync881

Sunday wasn’t much better, but I figured it couldn’t get worse and Monday would be better.

Well, hello it’s Monday and I’m doing what I do best to mend a cracked heart: run, sweat, eat, repeat.


Quick morning run around my neighborhood. Almost a solid mile, but holy hills!

As you all know, most places are closed for the holiday, and my gym has limited accessibility, so after my run I worked out with my free weights and did exercises that are effective, but take little or no equipment: squats, lunges, mountain climbers, etc. This is my Day 21: at home work outs prevent me from making excuses.

Day 21: post-run at home work out. The gym is closed today, but I have some weights at home and there are plenty of exercises that can be done without equipment. “Exercise gives you endorphins. endorphins make you happy. Happy people don’t just shoot their husbands, they just don’t.”- Elle Woods #mouthsofbabes #endorphins #onthemend #sweatitout #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar

For the rest of the day, I’m cleaning up and working on mending this cracked heart of mine. I do believe a new recipe will come from this. What are some of your favorite health-ish things to pig out on when you’re down and out? Suggestions are always welcome!


❤ Cristina


Mini adventures and Map My Walk

There are so many applications and software programs out there to help us track our workouts, calories, and pretty much everything in between. One of the things on my “to-do” list was to take a walk downtown. I know it sounds silly, but in the two year’s since I’ve moved here I’ve never given myself the time to walk downtown and explore. I’m about 5 blocks away from city hall and downtown, but never felt comfortable going alone.

Here’s what I discovered on my walk:

  • There’s a Dunkin Donuts and a Honey Dew Donut Shop down the street, across from each other
  • There’s a bunch of sit down and take out restaurants
  • A few cafe’s
  • A park behind city hall, which I knew was there, but never realized how close

Now that I know there’s food closer to me, I will have to resist!

I also met a girl named Francesca, who is working with Planned Parenthood on a grassroots effort to educate the public about new laws that officials are trying to pass down south that will make it harder for women to have access to facilities that provide STD screenings, birth control, annual screenings and yes, abortions. As a supporter of Planned Parenthood- it is more than an abortion clinic, I stopped and talked with her. I already donate to the organization and had no intention of doing so again today, but I know how hard cold calling can be, and I’m sure this is a similar pain. She’s 19 and was scheduled for a 5-hour shift. I bought her an ice coffee from the Dunkin I discovered.

After an hour of walking around and seeing what I could see on foot, I headed home. Straight to my computer, I searched for a software to map what I had walked. I found Map my Walk, very fitting. The computer version allows you to draw your map out, which is really easy. The cell phone application tracks you like a GPS. I created an account with my Facebook profile and got started on today’s walk.


Not too shabby if you ask me. And one thing to pull off the wall of things to accomplish this vacation. Here are some things I saw on my walk too!

This brings me to Day 18 of #100HappyDays: I love adventures. I’m big into sword fights, but obviously there are no pirates in Worcester, so I left my sword at home. I was armed with my cell phone camera though and a large ice coffee. Today’s adventure helped me see things that have been there all along, but I’ve never noticed.


❤ Cristina

Vacation days and to-do lists

There’s a high possibility that I either developed allergies (I’ve never had them before) or I’m getting sick (I have body aches). Today was the first day of my 7-day vacation and I had a plan. It was an awesome plan. Laundry. Cleaning. Post Office. Zumba. I can tell you right now that other than getting my gym clothes on nothing on that list was accomplished. I did get some dishes done, but I feel like complete crap. So I napped almost all day. While that may not have been the best use of my time, I have 6 more days off to get stuff done and be on point.

After rolling out of bed for the 4th time, I made my bed. I’m less likely to nap in it if it’s made- I guess I’m weird like that. I worked on a second to-do list. This list is for my length of vacation. It includes all things healthy from making a new recipe to drop it like a squat and walking around my city. I live in within downtown limits, but I NEVER walk around, so I’m going to take advantage of these days off.

I made 25 cards with different tasks on them that I have to accomplish from now until next Thursday when I go back to work. I’m great with lists and I believe this will really keep me on track as well as give me something to motivate me to think outside of the box.

This is also my day 17. I love to-do lists. It just happens that mine is currently on my wall and not on a piece of paper :]


What keeps you on track? Do lists help or hinder your day?

❤ Cristina

I said no to cake… It was red velvet

Today was one of those days where I made more work for myself when looking at data from different angles. I need to be less curious. I worked through lunch and needless I say I didn’t run today. It’s been rescheduled for tomorrow.

Since I had yesterday off, getting back into the office today was a little wonky and I feel like the to-do list was never ending. While I didn’t stick to my workout plan for today, my eating was on point. From my chicken breast and steamed veggies to my paleo banana muffins. I even said no to the red velvet cake in the break room at job número dos! Since getting back in track, I’ve definitely had some cravings and I know the first few days getting my butt in gear are the hardest, but jeez saying no to cake was a big deal. I kept talking about it too. Partly, it was a slow shift and I was bored, which made my cravings intensity. Partly, it was RED VELVET CAKE!

I continued to chew my gum and drink my water, which helped a little bit. When I got home tonight, I had no issues having some steamed broccoli and getting in bed with a water bottle. Being healthy really is mind over matter.

I still can’t believe I said no to cake.

What do you have trouble saying no to?

❤️ Cristina

Best Monday in a long time

First I’d like to say that my almost two week off from working out definitely set back. To start my day off today, I hit the gym: 30 minutes of free weights and 30 minutes of high resistance of the arc trainer. The weights weren’t so bad and I add some fun ballet kicks to stretch out; it was the cardio that killed me. I kept resistance between 60 and 75 on a scale of 1-100, and hung out on the arc trainer for 30 minutes.

Other than realizing I can’t slack on my workout routine, I learned that 10:30 am on a Monday is the popular time to go to the gym.

After relaxing for the afternoon, doing some laundry, grocery shopping and making another batch of crockpot apples and dates I headed to Bikram. Again, it’s been two weeks since I’ve gone, but I think I did pretty well tonight. I was able to get to the 530 class. Typically, I go to the 7 o’clock class, but I’m glad I went earlier. It gave me more time in the evening, but it’s also a totally different vibe. Everyone clapped at the end of class- which was awesome because NO ONE really does that in the 7 o’clock class.


Post Bikram! Nice and sweaty :]


Ground beef and salsa for post-Bikram dinner

Lastly, reflecting back on today, here’s my Day 14 of 100 Happy Days.

Day 14: Motivation Mondays push me to work harder. Seeing he progress of others who have a similar struggle or similar goals reminds me I’m not alone. Today’s my day and I started with 30 minutes of weights and 30 minutes of high resistance on the arc trainer. #happinessdoesntcomeinajar #100happydays #gymlife #fitfam #HRM #healthyliving #beastmode #earnyourbreakfast


While I don’t think today was my best workout, it was a good step in the right direction. I’m going for an endurance run tomorrow on lunch since I have to work tomorrow night. Yay, for slowly checking things off my two-week health list :]

I hope everyone else had a successful Monday, here’s to surviving the rest of the week.


❤ Cristina

When I conduct proper meal prep I feel like my life is together

Happy Sunday!

After a crazy week last week, I finally have some control over my days. Today I did some meal prep for the first half of the week. Lunches and dinners are prepared up until Wednesday. I may need to pick up some more produce, but I also have a sufficient amount of fruit to help supplement my food intake. Yesterday I made breakfast muffins, which might as well be coconut banana muffins. I tripled the batch because I had some ripe bananas in the fruit bowl and was able to make about 20 muffin. Bagged and in the fridge ready to be devoured!

Tomorrow I’m spending my morning doing some work in the gym :] And hopefully I won’t have to work tomorrow night so I can get my butt to Bikram in the evening too!

I’m going to really focus this week on getting back on track from the past two weeks of crazy and horrible eating. his is my plan for the next few days:


  • Morning Weights
  • Night Birkam class


  • Lunch run for endurance


  • Hour of Cardio
  • Food prep

This leads me to Day 13 of 100 Happy Days: Meal Prep.



This makes me feel like I have some control of my life, similar to making my bed every day. By making my meals ahead of time I know what I’m eating, I can get some extra sleep and I don’t need to panic about a meal a few hours from now. It’s all planned. #backontrack #paleo #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar #eathealthy #earnyourbreakfast

Have a great week!

❤ Cristina

This one is for Meagan and #100happydays catch-up

Today’s post is dedicated to someone I didn’t even know I had the opportunity to influence, but I guess that’s what makes social media so special. We can connect to so many and touch so many lives without realizing we’re doing it at all.

Meagan started #100HealthyDays, similar to #100HappyDays, but she’s truly focusing on her health. She does shakeology and is on her way to become a master to food prep, but I want her to remember a few things that I have to remind myself all the time:

1. Change is slow, so don’t discouraged

I have the hardest time with this, mostly because I love immediate results. Being healthy isn’t about immediacy, it’s about maintaining and time. You have to give yourself time to adjust to all of the changes you’re making and you have give yourself time to see the changes taking effect. This could be why I take so many selfies, it’s really the best way to see change- side by side comparison.

2. It’s okay to mess up every now and then

We have busy schedules, we get sick, we’re tired and while we think we’re super heroes, we’re not. You’re going to eat a donut just because or forget food prep one night. It happens and you can’t beat yourself up over the mistakes.  We don’t diet for a short time, we make a lifestyle change and we’re learning every day. I have definitely eaten a piece of cake for breakfast because I caved to my stress, but I’ve also eaten clean and I know what the two can do for my body.

3. If you’re tired, it’s okay to sleep

After a long work week or a long day at work, it’s okay to skip the gym once or twice. I’m not saying you should skip it all 7 days because you’re tired, but there are times when going to the gym and working out when you’re tired isn’t good for your body. You could injure yourself when you’re not paying attention. Sometimes yoga in the living room is a good choice.

4. Almond butter should be eaten in moderation

Yeah, I’m still getting the hang of this one.

5. Organic isn’t always better, watch your wallet

If you eat the skin, then go organic. If you cut the skin off, then it’s doesn’t matter much- depending on what it is. Organic can mean a number of things and it’s not always the best option. Watch your wallet, check for sale and buy in bulk. Clean, cut and freeze what you can- you will save so much more money and eating healthy won’t be as hard.


Also, here’s today’s #100HappyDays post. I talked about my career the other day, and in general in I LOVE my job, but these two students made it so much more amazing this academic year. Today was their graduation, so naturally we took a selfie backstage before they presented on stage :]



Day 12: I love my students. They work hard and make me excited to do my job, even though there are ups and downs I am so proud of them for everything they did this year. $26,906.42 and counting. 41% of the class. #wpi #100happydays #happinessdoesntcomeinajar #philanthropy #students #highered #ilovemyjob #careermove