All aboard with Big Train! GIVEAWAY!

Since I started writing in this lovely and motivational  blog, my sister Alyssa has been awesome enough to let me do some product reviews.  I first got to try out a bra from as you may remember from this funny story…  More recently however I have been fortunate enough to try out a protein shake from the company Big Train!


I started drinking my yummy drink last Wednesday after I had two hours of tennis and before I went on to another two hours of Pilates and yoga.  Since I started this crazy routine of mass amounts of exercise, my body has been craving some sort of pick-me-up that could actually keep me full through my mornings when I wasn’t able to snack.

The chocolate frappe protein shake has provided me with just the boost I’ve needed!  After my first shake last week I made it through the next classes with no problem of  my grumbling tummy disturbing my neighbors during quiet pranayama breathing routine.  Over the past five days I have been rotating between having the shake for either breakfast or lunch.  With the addition of the calories from my milk and the calorie count of only 130 kcal per 1/2 cup of mix, the shakes turn out to be a nice little meal substitute.

I had some issues in  the beginning with being able to thoroughly blend the powder into my milk, but that was before I asked you, the readers, what you did about that issue.  So many of you suggested  the blender ball so I promptly went out an bought a bottle of my own.   Over the weekend I actually had time to make a blended frozen shake with half a banana and it was so good I’m suddenly inspired to go make another one… Even though I already had my shake after tennis today!

April’s frozen shake with banana

The thing I like best about these Big Train shakes is that they don’t taste grainy or chalky like so many I have had before.  Plus I *really* like how it lasts me a good three hours or so before I start to get hungry again.  I’ve tried probably about six or seven different protein shakes and I have yet to find one that I would continue to use.  I might actually consider maintaining my use of the chocolate frappe once my bottle runs out.  I tend to be somewhat of a cheap ass so the $45 price tag will be what I would call an “investment” but when I think about it, the whole jug is enough to last me for about a month and comes out to to be about $1.50 a meal.  That’s pretty cheap when I think of it that way.

April and her first Big Train shake!

April and her first Big Train shake before she invested in a blender ball.

One of the cool things about this company is that they don’t just do protein shakes either.  In fact, they have a whole array of a bunch of different kinds of tasty convenient beverages for people.  They’ve got gluten free products, kids products, low carb, low sugar, no caffeine, seasonal products… all sorts of stuff!  They even have baked goods!

The folks over at Big Train were awesome enough to send me some goodies along with my shake mix to give away for our readers to try.

So tell me readers… Why should you be the winner of the Big Trail shake giveaway?
It’s super easy to enter… Pick one or all of the things below for your chance to win! Leave a comment for each thing you do, or if you only do one, that’s fine too – just make sure you leave a comment on this post that you did it! We will pick one random winner on Wednesday, April 10th at 11:59 PM PST. US and ages 18+ only, please. If you win, we’ll verify that you did certain things, so please be honest 🙂


In the meantime, I’ll continue drinking my shake every day and will report back in a few weeks with whether or not I feel it had an impact on my weight loss!

Enjoy your week!



Low-Cal Cocktail: The Rosy Reindeer Cooler

Hello friends, how was your weekend? I had a very busy weekend but slept in both days, which was JOYOUS. I love sleep. A few weeks ago I was offered some samples of Angry Orchard Hard Cider to review. In general, I’m not a huge beer drinker (it’s too bitter for me), so when I first discovered Hornsby Cider a year or so ago, I fell in love. Since then I’ve dabbled in Crispin Cisder, Hornsby and Widers, but had never tried Angry Orchard so I jumped at the chance. (PS – Lambic is also a great choice for people who aren’t quite into traditional beers yet!)

Best mail delivery EVER!

I was a very happy blogger when this delightful package showed up at my door, and even more so when I cracked open my first bottle at a cool 190 calories and sipped my way to relaxation. The samples came with the below recipe, hand crafted by world famous mixologist Hayley Jenson. I decided to take a crack at it, and with a few minor substitutions, I present to you, the first ever Double Chin Diary cooking show, complete with a misbehaving cat on the counter and i-phone reading awkwardness.

Rosy Reindeer Cooler


2 medium strawberries, quartered (8 cals) (2g)
2 basil leaves, julienned (cut into thin strips – I didn’t have this, oh well!) (0 cals) (0g)
2 lime slices (10 cals) (0.5g)
½ oz (1 tbsp) simple syrup (18 cals) (1g)
1 oz  (2 tbsp) vanilla vodka (I used regular – came out great!) (60 cals) (0g)
4 oz (8 tbsp) Crisp Apple Angry Orchard Cider (70 cals) (7.5g)

=166 calories, 11 grams of sugar

Mixology: Muddle strawberries & basil in simple syrup. Squeeze & add the 2 lime slices. Fill glass with ice . Add 4 oz cider. Stir to incorporate ingredients. Garnish with strawberry & lime slice.

If you prefer watching a professional, check out the official video Angry Orchard sent me.


You can also browse tons of other lighter cider cocktail recipes at their website here – I can’t get enough of the cool angry tree illustration. If you’re in the mood for something lighter than beer and a little sweeter, you should definitely check out Angry Orchard – they even have an apple ginger version that has a great spicy little kick to it.

I’m a huge fan of Bailey’s Irish Cream, but I can’t even think about that drink without packing on about 19 pounds, as one serving is general around 330 calories. I’ll stick to cider this season, thank you very much!

When it comes to boozy beverages, how do you keep yourself calorically in check?