Double Chin Diary Digest: It’s Friday!

Hello everybody, happy Friday! I’m writing to you from the future… well, not really, I’m writing this on a Thursday night and scheduling it for Friday. I’m away at FitBloggin’ today having an amazing time! This is just a quicky to announce our winners, I’ll be back on Monday.

It’s time to announce our winners! The winner of the Spandits! giveaway is Monique Gonzalez! Congrats, Mo! This girl has been working out hardcore so I know she’ll put this cute headband to good use.

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And, the winner of the quick Krave Jerky giveaway is my very own Aunt Ginny! No, I promise I didn’t rig it… she won fair and square according to random.org. Nice work guys – I’ll be sending you e-mails so you can get your prize! If you didn’t win this time, don’t worry — There will be TONS of giveaways coming up in the near future. I can’t wait to share my latest finds with you!
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Thailand 20 Tuesday: Week 1 Results

Hello friends! Today marks the first week complete of my Thailand 20 Tuesday and I am happy to report I am starting the week right on track with a loss of two pounds!

McCormick Fiesta Citrus Salt Free Seasoning on Cucumbers

This week I made lots of changes that helped me be successful – like eating tons of veggies! For lunch one day, I paired my turkey sandwich with some fiesta style cucumber slices – just cucumbers, lime juice and McCormick Citrus Fiesta seasoning I got from FitBloggin’. Yum.

Then for dinner, I bulked up my meals again with yummy things like roasted peppers and brussels sprouts with a spritz of Balsamic vinegar. Of course, I tracked everything on MyFitnessPal, too.

Brussels sprouts on the stalk! Just mist with EVOO and balsamic vinegarette and roast at 400!

I also stayed true to my word of entering “beast mode” and exercising as much as I possibly could! Not only did I hit the gym, but I did things around the house like washing the cars, weeding and doing laundry.

Sweaty and pink from a great cardio workout!

A couple other small things I did: I started a new vitamin regimen (more on that later), I drank tons of water and tea and tried to cut out my beloved diet coke (Sad.), and I was mindful of being hungry when I ate – not just bored or looking for a fix.

All in all I’m thrilled that week one was a great start – and now it’s time to keep it up for week two! Yay!

PopChips Tortilla Chips Giveaway!

Enter for your chance to win a case of Popchips tortilla chips!

When I was in college, my fabulous dietitian had samples of PopChips in her office. I very clearly remember taking a sample, because hey, who doesn’t love free stuff, but thinking “Oh boy, another low fat fakey.” Well, I was wrong – because the crunchy, salty potato-y goodness of PopChips kept me coming back. I’ve been a fan of them for several years and usually replenish my stash at Costco, and my favorite flavor is definitely the BBQ. My husband even likes them, and that’s saying a lot as he is definitely a fan of good old fashioned fatty boom boom BBQ potato chips. (Who’s not, right?!)

A happy girl with a happy PopChips snack at FitBloggin’ 12!

This year at FitBloggin’, I was psyched to get to try out the new PopChips Tortilla Chips! There are four flavors – Nacho Cheese, Ranch, Salsa and Chili Limon. My favorites are definitely ranch and chili limon – they’re slightly spicy, salty and tangy and are perfect on their own. With half the fat of fried or flavored tortilla chips and 0 grams of saturated fat, these are a chip you can feel good about eating. I also love that they’re all natural – they’re Non-GMO and have no preservatives or fake flavors and colors. I think this goes a long way in snacking, because I don’t feel as “heavy” when I eat natural snacks. My only request to PopChips is that they make a plain tortilla version – I’d love to have a lower calorie tortilla chip for guacamole or salsa or light nachos.(Nerdy industry sidenote: They have the cutest writing on the bags. Props to their copywriter and marketing comms team! I’m so much more inclined to buy a lighter food product if the attitude is fun! (I know, I’m weird.))

Nacho Cheese PopChips – a lighter version of Doritos that I think taste better! These would be great crunched up in a lightened up Taco Salad. Yum, I might make that tonight!

Today, you get to enter for a chance to try tortilla PopChips for yourself – because PopChips has generously offered to give away a case of PopChips Tortilla Chips to one lucky Double Chin Diary reader! To enter, leave a comment below telling me which flavor you’d most like to try (Salsa, Ranch, Nacho or Chili Limon), and if you’re feeling lucky, score additional entries by “liking” popchips on Facebook, following PopChips on Twitter and sharing this giveaway with your friends on Twitter. (Please use RaffleCopter to tell me you did it – embedded below.) The contest will end at midnight on Friday, October 12, and one lucky US reader will win by random drawing – so get to it!

Let’s get poppin’! Good luck!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

“You’re Real! – In which I meet other bloggers I admire. FitBloggin’ Part 2

Me and Kenz!

One of my favorite things about being a drone of the internet webs (in day job and blog life!) is that you make some amazing connections online. I still remember the first time I met “blog friends” in real life – I was meeting up with Kenlie from All The Weigh and Alexa from The Curvy Nerd. I got lost on the way there and my frazzled nerves were all worried about “Will we have awkward silences? Will they judge me if I eat bread? What if I want seconds at the salad bar? Do you think I can reveal my sarcastic sense of humor?” Of course, once I met them and we eased into conversation, it was so much fun – and they were both exactly like the people they were online. No big sweat. I got to see Kenlie again at FitBloggin’ and she was her usual sparky and enigmatic self. Isn’t that a fabulous dress on her?!

Skinny Emmie and Double Chin Diary rock!

I also got the pleasure of meeting Skinny Emmie – a weight loss blogger who’s lost over 100 pounds and works in social media. She’s very charming in real life and has a sweet little Southern twang. Aren’t we cute? Emmie petted my shirt, claiming that she loves textiles. It is a nice shirt, if I do say so myself – soft, stretchy and flattering to those with large… erm.. parts.

 

 

Me and Tara from Media Remedial

I also met Tara, from Media Remedial on my first day at the conference. I was jet lagged and disoriented, and after I got my lunch, I felt like a grade-school student looking for a place to sit in the cafeteria. All around me people were busy having conversations and eating their quinoa with gusto, so I felt a little lost. Tara cleared off a seat for me, looked up at me with a big smile and invited me to sit down. She’s a genuinely warm person and I was so happy to get to meet her and hang out with her through out the weekend. (Bonus points: Like me, she’s also a crazy cat lady and harsh media critic. It was love at first sight.)

Alyssa and Fat Girl Vs World Duke It Out

I was also lucky enough to meet Robby, from Fat Girl Vs. World. Robby and I have been Twitter pals for quite some time, and I actually started following her because she did boxing. At the time when I started boxing for fitness, I felt like not many females did it, so it was fun to find somebody who shared my enthusiasm. She always provided me tips on posture and hand position, so that’s why we’re “duking it out” in this pic. As usual, my wrists decided to go back to flute-player style, so I’m workin’ on that. Robby was super nice and funny in person – just like her blog.

Alyssa, Shelly and Beth

Two more lovely ladies I met were Shelly, or “Egg Face“, and Beth, from Melting Mama. I also met Nikki from Bariatric Foodie, but I didn’t get a pic with her! I first met the awesomeness that are Shelly and Beth because I was live blogging a session and Beth referred to now-skinny people as “former fatties”. As someone who uses humor to blog daily, I found her sassiness refreshing, and like a moth to a flame, I was drawn to her! I’ve already conversed with all these gals several times since the conference, and they’re the perfect example of why I need to attend conferences like this. It’s all about finding people with common interests who can help you remember what’s important – and for me, that’s losing the weight in any way I can, even if it’s slooooow like molasses. I’ll get there! 🙂

How about you? Have you ever met blog or internet friends in real life? Would you? I still have a few on my “must meet” list,  one of them being KJ Pugs!

 

FitBloggin’ Recaps Day Two – Joyful Shimmy, Janet Ober, Hank Hannah and Jack Fit

The Gang's all here! FitBloggin 2012!

Hello everybody! I am home from Baltimore and slowly getting back into the routine. First things first – I’m lucky to be able to travel as much as I do, but MAN, do I miss cooking when I’m on the road! I just made a delicccccious wheat pasta with a charred broccoli and onion sauce, mixed with lean bacon bits and small mozarella pearls. Super tasty, fairly light (if I keep the serving right!) and homemade. Best of all, I managed to scrape that together before going to the grocery store. Whew!

Laura from Joyful Shimmy learned to love her body by getting naked!

Friday night at FitBloggin’, we had an ignite fitness keynote session. What this meant was instead of the usual boring 1 hour keynote, there was 15 speakers, each broken up into 5 minutes with 15 slides. It was fun, fast-paced and kept us entertained – especially with stories like those from Laura, of Joyful Shimmy, a recovered bulimic who learned to love her body through burlesque! I loved Laura because she was actually the first blogger I met while decorating my badge, and she was friendly, approachable and funny – a perfect introduction to my first fitbloggin’ ever.

Image from JanetOber.com. Click to read her story and buy her book.

There were also really moving stories, like Janet’s. Janet was hit by 5 semi trucks at a time – leaving her leg mangled and nearly destroyed. Despite crippling depression and the serious physical trauma, Janet overcame her struggle and now runs marathons. Her speech was EXACTLY what I wanted to get from FitBloggin’. I’m always the mayor of excuses village, and if Janet can overcome nearly losing her leg, suffering major depression… and then continue to run MARATHONS, I can lose this weight. Excuses are not valid. Janet is a powerful speaker, and her words shook me to the core – not with fear or pressure, but with complete inspiration and validation that if you work hard enough, anything is possible. (Except finding a comfortable bra. I have decided that is impossible.)

 

 

Hank was sick of being the fat guy - so he took charge and shed over 100 pounds.

There were also light and humorous presentations, like Hank’s, from the Business of Losing Weight. Hank has lost over 100 pounds, and to illustrate his points, he did each of his slides in paint. Check out this awesome artwork  – a valiant effort, right?! I don’t think I could do that in Paint!

 

 

 

Jack's No Flack Jump the Track Creative Smack Attack

One of the show stealers of the night was definitely (and not surprisingly) Jack Sh*t. Jack Sh*t is well known in the weight loss blogging community for his offbeat and hilarious blogging style. Jack put together a funny and random slide show with things like slides of iced tea, and things that spark his creativity… including Mentos. Towards the end of his presentation, he magically procured a 2-liter bottle of coke from behind the podium, and dumped in two mentos. It was awesome, and was like the Ozzy-Osbourne bat-eating event of FitBloggin’. I raise my hat to you, mr. gettin’ fit.

There were so many other amazing speakers this weekend, but if I keep going, my jet-lagged body will never have time to sleep! Stay tuned tomorrow to find out about my Twitter Community live blog, and also, which fantastic fitbloggin’ folks I met and chatted with.

 

I’m a FitBloggin’ Live Blogger!

Hey bloggies! This is the first of two pieces of very good news, the second that I’ll share in a couple days (just crossing some T’s and dotting some i’s…). When I first started blogging about my attempts to lose weight, I noticed that all the “big league” bloggers like Skinny Emmie, All The Weigh and Jack Sh*t Gettin’ Fit were talking about FitBloggin’. After some internet sleuthing I found out that it’s a super cool health, fitness and weight loss blogging conference in Baltimore, Maryland. I considered going but wasn’t sure if a small bloggy fish like me in such a big bloggy pond would fit in. Then, there was the cost. As y’all know from my frequent complaining, I’m a grad student by night, so I don’t often have a couple hundred dollars just laying around. With the cost of airfare, hotel and the conference ticket it was just a bit too pricey for me to swing with August’s text books looming! I asked about FitBloggin’ scholarships and then I found out the founder, Roni, had just implemented a new volunteer program. If you were willing to live blog a conference session, you could get a scholarship to attend the conference for free!

I applied, crossed my fingers, did a little rain dance and then I got the email Tuesday morning that I had made it in!!! I’ll be joining 29 other bloggers in September and covering one of the event sessions on the blog as it happens! I am SO excited, and I love that my love of blogging and new media and journalism is converging in such a cool way. Matt is also thrilled because he’ll be coming along with me to Maryland, where he’ll explore DC while I mingle with other fit-minded people, eat granola, do exercise classes and learn about growing the little old Double Chin Diary. YAY!

So tell me, friends – I can’t be the only one getting good news in July. What has rocked your world so far this month?