Selfless Saturday

When I began this blog in 2013 I had two intentions, to lose weight and get as fit as possible and to help charities with each ten pounds. I accomplished much in the time between July 2013 and May 2017. My hiatus and weight gain after 2017 was the result of a few personal losses.

Here I am approaching 2020 and beginning again like it’s a brand new journey. I still have some personal struggles I’m dealing with, but the point is I’m getting through and getting back on track. Life happens to all of us, it’s how we react and take action that shows who we really are. I’m first navigating through the holidays then really setting my intentions on my goals for 2020.

I want to start Selfless Saturday’s beginning today, so here’s my first contribution to my weekly Selfless Saturday. Feel free to join in and let me know how you are celebrating paying it forward on Saturday, this one has a bit of a backstory.

As my weight loss journey evolved coffee is still my non-negotiable. People have said to me, now you must stop drinking coffee. That didn’t happen in 2013 and it’s not happening now. I also believe in kindness, giving back and paying it forward; all while fueled on my delicious morning java. One cup is usually my limit, with an occasional second cup when I visit book stores and coffee shops.

Of course sometimes disaster strikes in the form of a broken down coffee maker. This happened back when we first moved to San Francisco in November 2014, my new co-worker Alba sold me a brand new coffee maker for just ten bucks, and she put what seemed like a years worth of coffee in the bag for me.  That coffee maker made delicious coffee and kept me going for a few years.

The dreaded broken down coffee maker moment happened to me again last week. I woke up and my coffee maker just stopped working. We are on a budget and a new coffee maker was not in the cards. Cue my dearest friend Kristen who happened to have two coffee makers she never uses. Do you believe Kristen doesn’t like coffee? Yes, neither did I, but her wonderful qualities outweigh her lack of coffee love. The one coffee maker I chose to use is working perfectly and it turns off automatically, which is needed because I tend to be just a slight bit neurotic. The other coffee maker is a two cup single use coffee maker, a black and decker.

I was at work this week and one of my co-workers was brewing coffee and I mentioned how delicious it smelled. He told me he agreed, and how his coffee maker recently just stopped working. I, of all people understand the horror of a broken down coffee maker. I mentioned the extra coffee maker Kristen gifted me with, so today I’m taking it in for him so he doesn’t have to purchase a new coffee maker. I’m sure he would rather spend the extra cash on Christmas gifts for his daughter. The beauty of the ricochet effect. That’s what I call when people share kindness and pay it forward, it comes back to you ten fold. I’m grateful to Kristen for helping me fuel my mornings with my much needed cup of caffeinated joy. This is my first Selfless Saturday and it wasn’t even planned. Kristen started it and I’m just paying it forward.

My hopes for you this Holiday season is that people share their kindness with an open heart, and you go forward doing it for someone who may need an extra smile or just a cup of deliciousness found in coffee. It warms the heart and soul. Happy Selfless Saturday. Love and light Rose 

 

 

 

 

Chick Pea Salad Sandwiches

Happy Friday to all. I cannot believe it’s December 6, 2019. Time is truly flying by. I’m totally inspired for 2020 and my goal for the holidays is to try my best to lose but still enjoy some vegan holiday food. This time of year is the hardest time to try to get back on track,  but here I am. I convinced my hubby James to eat clean Whole Foods plant based in January. We will be eating clean vegan six days of the week with one day with vegan fun foods (within reason). As someone who had eating disorders this gives me the balanced and healthy lifestyle I’ve been striving for. I usually eat this way but my hubby does not as often. After the holidays we will be on the same page. Through the holiday season I will be posting some vegan fun holiday recipes as well as the healthy meals I eat most of the time.

Chick Pea Salad Sandwiches are a staple in my house, and so easy to make. We eat them on Food For Life Ezekiel Toast or whole grain crackers. They are delicious served in an avocado or over leafy greens. This is my version of the popular recipe.


You will need three cans of no salt Garbanzo Beans, drained and rinsed and mashed with a potato masher. I cup chopped celery, one large yellow onion chopped or a handful of scallions chopped. Two tablespoons of Dijon mustard. Two tablespoons of dill relish. Ground pepper. Paprika. Three tablespoons of vegan mayo. Mix all ingredients together and Pepper and add paprika to taste. You can switch up the vegan mayo with vegan yogurt and or mashed avocado. I am generous with my paprika. We like to build our sandwiches with leafy greens and big slices of beefsteak tomatoes. Sometimes we use roasted rep peppers, and add kalamata olives to the mixture.

You can really personalize these sandwiches. They are delicious on crackers with a bit of vegan cream cheese for a pate like appetizer. A wonderful meal and completely budget friendly. I’m on WW blue plan. I thought I could change to the purple plan but I feel blue works for me. I may change back. If you do WW and count points the garbanzo beans are free on blue and purple plans. Count the vegan mayo and the Ezekiel bread through the app. All the vegetables are free except the avocado. Crackers and vegan cream cheese must all be counted on the app.

Let me know if you try the sandwiches. Oh, fun fact, our cat Max was meowing like crazy when I made these sandwiches, apparently he thought I was making tuna sandwiches. Happy Plant Based Eating.

Happy Weekend to all. Love and light, Rose

 

WEIGH IN WEEK FIVE


Happy Monday to all. Today begins my week five and it’s also weigh in day. Today my weight is 172 lbs and I lost another 1 lb and 5 lbs total in 4 weeks. My true focus has been on consistency and balance. My fitness goals are revolved around progress not perfection. My short term goals with my workouts are to be able to do all the exercises with ease. I want to be able to hold planks and side planks longer. I once planked for over five minutes and I hope to do that again. I want to be able to do 20 pushups, first the easy versions and later the more difficult pushups. I’m focusing on fitness and clean eating and allowing my Monday’s to be my vegan splurge days. Like I said, consistency and balance.

This week I’m going to take my #benderfitness workouts up a notch with more intensity and three rounds of workouts, and if it’s warmer I’m planning on taking my cardio outdoors. I’m going to add a little running to my cardio. It’s been four weeks and my joints feel better, I already feel more flexible and I do not get winded going up stairs. I have more energy and overall I feel like my wellness is returning. On my work days I eat clean vegan food and I meal prep so I never go hungry. I have found my stride but I also understand this is only the beginning and the last four weeks were a warm up for the real work that is to come.

If you are on a fitness and weight loss journey I would love to hear from you. What inspires you to keep going and overcome obstacles and challenges to get to your goals? I love feeling healthy and ageless, so fitness and nutrition are so important for my life. Life can be messy but consistency is truly rewarding. That feels like the biggest accomplishment, the fact we keep going no matter what comes our way. Bonus points for those sharing smiles to whoever comes in our paths. Yes, it’s a challenge. Yes, we can do it.
Love and light to all. Rose 

NON SCALE VICTORIES

Happy Friday. I’m celebrating small nsv’s, that means non-scale victories. It’s week three of my #benderfitness workouts and I’m going strong and getting stronger. I’m working out 5-6 days a week, and I can see improvement in my strength. My push ups are a little bit lower, I’m holding my planks a little bit longer. My lunges are not as scary or as difficult. My flexibility is improving and my joints are no longer aching. A body in motion stays in motion, a body at rest stays at rest. Newton’s law. I’m doing these workouts for either six weeks or 12 weeks, and later I will switch it up.

To me this is the beginning of success, the little improvements and the commitment to put in the hard work day after day, despite the struggles and disappointments of life. As humans we tend to only view success in the grand accomplishments. Money, cars, awards, followers; material gains and huge accolades are often looked upon as more important than the non material and smaller wins. We tend to congratulate someone without knowing the background of the blood, sweat and tears that got them there. It takes hard work to accomplish dreams and goals, but that hard work in the beginning should never be looked upon as insignificant. When someone who’s never exercised in their life finally walks a block, that’s success to me. It’s getting the guts to get up and go, to jump hurdles and leap over anything that gets in your way; and a lot of time we are tripping over our own two feet. Our insecurities hold us back, our perception of what others think holds us back. Don’t do that.

My life right now has issues, but I’m not letting that hold me back, and I understand that’s life for all of us. There is fear, uncertainty and some sadness; but through it all I’m a survivor who loves life and is grateful for another day. So each day, no matter what’s going on I will commit to my small daily goals because that’s how I’m getting to where I’m going. Small goals one day will become big accomplishments. No one is clapping when I hold my plank 1 minute at 1 am in the morning, but I’m giving my commitment to making it happen a standing ovation. That’s all the accolades I need, the satisfaction of showing up and getting it done despite what comes my way. In one year I will look back at this moment with immense pride because I refused to give up.

Do you believe in coming back after failure? Do you believe in second and third chances to get something right after falling on your face multiples times? I find it really inspiring when someone makes a come back after failure after failure. After all failure is just a word we created, and we don’t have to let that word define us. Every brand new day is a chance to try again, and get it right. Let’s get it right, let’s work hard and show ourselves we can and will do it. Let’s define and rewrite our definition of success. Most important point to remember is to remember to make time for others when you are out in the world trying to make a name for yourself. No one is an island. Kindness and giving should always be a given in the sequence of chasing success. We all are here for one another. Let’s chase success together and rise each other up. Everyone who tries deserves thunderous applause. Show up and give yourself a standing ovation. 

Love and light,
 Rose 

 

 

 

 

WEDNESDAY WISDOM

Happy Wednesday. Above is the photo of my before and after on my first part of my weight loss blog journey 2013-2017. For anyone new reading this I started my blog to lose weight and support a new charity with each ten pounds I lost in 2013.  I reached my lowest weight of 159 lbs in May 2017 and helped many charities in Los Angeles and San Francisco. In my life really got really crazy. My Mother became ill and died May 21st, 2017. Two weeks later we moved from LA to Houston TX, and in December 2017 we lost our beloved Siamese Rascal after months of trying to save him. It was a rough year to say the least.

In 2018 we had some major life challenges and my blog really came to a halt. I would start and quit, mostly because those changes left scars on me, just like the Elton John song lyrics from the Funeral for a friend song. Those lyrics really speak to me. Sometimes changes in the form of challenges result in scars. For me those scars took on the form of excuses, and I just didn’t put in the work like I did in the past. I ended up gaining half my weight back and I was truly unhappy for the first time in a long time.

Now it’s the end of 2019 and I’ve come to the conclusion there’s always going to be challenges. Scars fade eventually and you will get new challenges with new scars, that’s life. I’ve decided to go after all of my goals, beginning here with my wellness, fitness and weight loss. I’m at it every day because when the new scars fade I won’t have to feel bad for quitting. Quitting is not in my vocabulary anymore. I was strong through my move from LA to San Francisco in 2014 and I kept going, and that’s what I’m doing now. I’m taking inspiration from my former self, with new scars motivating me to overcome new challenges.

It’s my new week three and I feel wonderful. Transitioning to night workouts is a game changer for me. There’s a peace about the gym at that time. I’m up late because I work late and my energy is high, so I’m utilizing that fact to go after my fitness goals instead of using work as an excuse. Last night I noticed my planks are getting stronger, and my balance doing warrior 3 is really improving. These are the changes that start my progress. I’m very proud of getting to where I am in my mindset, and proud I’m no longer using life’s problems as excuses. I’m doing all this as an even prouder vegan, I transitioned to veganism in 2018. It’s who I am and that I got right. I’m living my most authentic life.

You can choose happiness or misery, and I choose happiness. I’m no longer an excuse maker. I’m a goal setter and getter. I’m on the road to becoming an after, taking it one mile at a time. There are no shortcuts, nor will I veer off the road and head in a different direction. This is my journey and my positive mindset gets to decide where I’m going.

Happy Wednesday to all. Love and light, Rose 

WEIGH IN MONDAY

Happy Monday. It’s week three since I’ve totally recommitted to my fitness and health, it’s also weigh in. Today I lost 2 lbs and my weight is 174 lbs. I’ve lost 3 lbs since I started over. It’s also week three of consistent #benderfitness workouts with cardio. Working out late is a game changer for me. I’m doing it my way on my time, and I believe that’s one of the secrets to achieving my fitness goals. I’m no longer skipping or making excuses. So far I feel fantastic.

Last night when I went to work I forgot my dinner, but I had my hemp smoothie. I was so hungry when I got home so I had to eat a quick bite of tofu scramble. There was a second I almost skipped my workout, but I walked out that door and got it done to a new fun playlist. I’m in Texas for now and they use the term Y’all a lot. It kind of grows on you. So I’m here to tell you, make it fun y’all. Make what you are doing fun, make it a game, use music, get excited. That’s what I’m doing and it’s working so far.

Well I’m off for the day. Crush those goals y’all!! Happy Motivational Monday to all. With Gratitude, Rose

BMI GOALS

Happy Saturday. It’s coffee time, and a moment to reflect on long term weight goals. My BMI went back up in the obese range when I gained half my weight back. So I did a chart to see what weight I need to be to transition to overweight BMI, and finally to a normal BMI number. I’m not in any hurry to get there. I’m trying to really focus on overall health, fitness, strength and flexibility; as well as building up my stamina. I understand I am not a number, but at the same time I need to have a healthy weight I’m working towards. It’s a guideline for me. My short term goal is 169 lbs and the next short term goal is 159 lbs. My ultimate goal is 141 lbs.

This week concludes my second week of consistent #benderfitness workouts, and cardio. I’m definitely feeling slightly stronger this week. I’ve noticed some improvements in the way I perform the exercises. Friday’s workout was the best so far, I was super energized and my planks were on point. I’m taking on day, one meal, one workout, and one weigh in at a time. I hope you are crushing your goals, no matter what your level is. Starting is half the battle. I’m proud that I’m continuing on despite challenges that may come my way. I’m on the road to being an after.
Happy Weekend love and light Rose

 

NOVEMBER ALREADY

Happy November, is it really November already? Today is also World Vegan Day. Let me start out this post by saying going vegan is my most proud thing I’ve done, I’m living my most authentic life. Happy World Vegan.

Are you team Thanksgiving or are you the type to fast track to Christmas? I’m a little of both, we love the whole time from October to January, it’s so festive. The weather here is a little cooler which adds to the ambience.

The Holiday season is not the easiest time to make a weight loss journey a success, but I’m going to get through it working out daily and with weight loss. Yesterday was Halloween, so I enjoyed a little treat within reason. Like I mentioned a few weeks ago when I began blogging on the regular again that I would be balanced in my approach. No more craziness and unhealthy ways to lose. That’s disordered eating and not part of my plan.

I began my day with avocado toast, topped with nuts, cherry tomatoes and Siracha sauce. In the past if I knew I was having a vegan splurge I would have skipped all meals, but not anymore. I know how important nutrition is, so no skipping for this gal.

My splurge was a lettuce and tomato sub, topped with Tofurky, vegan provolone and potato chips. I chose to drink sparkling water and I had a bit of dark chocolate. A lot of people would say that’s not a splurge, but for me it is. I’m eating cleaner whole plant based foods with minimum sodium, and the vegan turkey and cheese is high in sodium which makes it a occasional treat for me. We had a great Halloween and I don’t feel like my Journey has been derailed. I’m in this for the long haul.

My next splurge will be Thanksgiving. Tonight I work late and after work I will do my #benderfitness workout. The late night workouts are really working out for my schedule. I didn’t meal plan enough which makes my weekend a challenge but I will get through it. I realized I really love the convenience of vegan protein bars with my coffee. I’m a complete zombie when I awaken. Maybe I should make protein balls to have with my coffee. Well I’m off for the day, coffee is calling and I’m going to have quiet time before work with some kitty cuddles. Perhaps a sneak peak at the Hallmark Channel. 

Happy November, let’s crush some goals during this holiday season, and do it with gratitude.
Love and light, Rose

 

 

 

WEDNESDAY WISDOM

Happy Wednesday to all. I am here to say I have not missed a workout since I started brand new last week, and my food is on point. Last night my hubby James and I went to a movie and when we got home he decided he was taking a rest day. It was tempting to blow off one workout, but I declined and followed through with my commitment. That’s the theme of this new journey, following through with commitments.

I took before photos last week and I’m thinking about when I should take my next round of photos to chart progress. I’m thinking three months. That would be the end of January. What do you think? Do you feel three months can show progress?

Tomorrow is Halloween and I’m having a vegan cheat meal, a Tofurky sub and some potato chips. It’s my first cheat meal in two weeks, but I’m not going to call it a cheat meal any longer; it’s a splurge. I’m using my extra WW points so I’m not going off track, it’s just not completely clean vegan and that’s ok with me. I’m going to enjoy my vegan sub and chips, and have a little dark chocolate too.

I’m living life happy as I lose weight and get fit. It’s all about achieving a healthy mind, body and spirit. To get that you need balance. I will post a photo of my sub on Halloween. I’m eating fun foods and spending the day with my hubby, but I’m not skipping my Thursday workout. Back to the importance of commitments and building a solid routine, keeping that momentum going strong.

Do you love Halloween? We love the time between September and January, it really is festive. We hung orange lights and everything at home is illuminated. Yesterday our building had trick or treaters, it was so cute to leave out candy and see the smiles on the kiddies faces!!  No matter what you are going through, making others smile is definitely healing.

Off to work for the day, my food is packed for tonight I’m doing my Wednesday #benderfitness workout after I get home. No more excuses. Please give me your thoughts about the next time I should take full body photos to chart my progress. Have a wonderful Halloween Eve.
With Gratitude, Rose

TACO TUESDAY

It’s Taco Tuesday again, and ever since I found these cute mini corn/wheat tortillas on sale  I’ve been making vegan tacos.
It’s a perfect food to meal prep and take to work. 
Last week I roasted vegetables, tofu and sweet potato with thyme and a teaspoon of olive oil. I used a little vegan mayo and a little vegan sour cream mixed with Trader Joe’s Siracha to make a sauce.

I also made tacos from Trader Joe’s Steamed Lentils. I bought a big container of pre-cut veggies from Trader Joe’s and sautéed them in very little olive oil. I added the Steamed Lentils and Siracha Sauce. Two mini tacos was my serving with the sauce I made and steamed spinach. Pretty delicious if I must say, easy and high protein and low in WW points. It’s so easy to take leftovers to work. Instead of skipping dinner and eating super late night I eat at work so I have fuel for my after work #benderfitness workouts. 

I’m late to the Taco Tuesday party because up until now I admit I just wasn’t a taco fan. Now I have two vegan taco recipes in rotation. What will I come up with next week? Hmmm stay tuned!!

Gracias, Rose