You’re Invited…

Be Your Best Self November


I’m stepping out of my comfort zone, listening to my heart and putting everything I am into something totally new next month, so of course I wanted to invite my readers to be a part of it. :)

Do you ever feel like you’re someone who…

+ Tells yourself, I can’t do that?
+ Wants to find a balance between eating well and not driving yourself crazy?
+ Wants to lose weight, but feels stuck?
+ Doesn’t want to count calories or become obsessed with every bite of food?
+ Likes have a little “wiggle room” for her favorite treats?
+ Wishes she could love herself, but doesn’t know where to start?
+ Thinks you’re too busy to workout?
+ Has struggled with disordered eating?
+ Needs accountability?
+ Needs a mentor, coach and friend?
+ Wants to be a part of something bigger than herself?
+ Wants to be supported by like-minded women who just “get” you?

If any of these resonate with you (they do with me!), then you know you were meant to read this post.

I’ve been running challenge groups for almost a year, but this month I’m taking things further – this isn’t about losing weight. This is about overcoming fears, ridding yourself of anxieties, finding balance, and being the authentic, beautiful you that is ready to shine.

I’m stepping out on a limb in November, and I’m asking you to do the same. Starting November 2nd, I’ll be doing a 4-week “Be Your Best Self” challenge and I would love for you to join me.

What To Expect:
+ Four weeks (28 days) of group + individual online support (with ongoing weekly email check-ins after your Challenge is over)
+ An email every M, W, and F with a topic and journal prompt to get you thinking and digging deeper.
+ A resource vault with recipe e-books, meal planning strategies, and all the information you need to feel successful and prepared.
+ A real food nutrition plan and workout strategy that’s customized to fit YOU. Whether you’re a single girl in the city, or a busy working mom, whether you want to lose a few lbs, get over your sugar addiction, or just feel good in your skin.
+ Access to our (optional) private Facebook community to share your journey with women on a similar path.
+ Two (optional) calls with me to work out anything you’re struggling with, ask questions or just vent and chat!

Expectations of You:
+ Drink Shakeology every day for the duration of the Challenge (nourish your body from the inside out!)
+ Be ready to put in a little work – this challenge is about self-discovery, so you need to OPEN and ready to push yourself out of + your comfort zone.
+ Get MOVING with a workout program of your choice (Beachbody, TIU, gym, classes, race training, whatever YOU love!)

Are you excited? Nervous? WITH ME? Because I am here with you, every step of the way. I’ll not only be participating right along-side you, but I am your one on one personal coach to encourage you, help you and show you that you are worthy of your dreams.

If you’re ready to fall in love with yourself, sign up here:

If you have friends who you think would enjoy or benefit from this challenge, please forward along. If you have any questions, feel free to email me at The deadline to sign up is Tuesday, October 27th!

Now go have an amazing Friday :)

May 2014 | Page 4 of 6 | La Dolce Vita:

BBC Week 2–Workout Roundup

Hey everyone! I hope you’re all having a great weekend, I’m writing this ahead of time, so I don’t know if I am or not! Ha, let’s hope so. Anyway, this weekend was the end of week 2 (of 8) of Tina’s Best Body Bootcamp, and the end of the first of four phases! I liked this phase a lot because we did a lot with dumbells, which is helpful for balancing out each side. I also loved workout C, which was about building balanced leg strength (something I really need to work on!).

Alright, let’s take a look at last week’s workouts. I didn’t workout on Sunday, so a few days got shifted around:

Sunday Monday – Workout A (strength) plus 20 minutes of steady state cardio

Monday  Tuesday – Cardio intervals (on the BBC plan)

Tuesday Wednesday – Workout B (strength) plus 20 minutes of steady state cardio

Wednesday Thursday – Cardio intervals (on the BBC plan)

Thursday – ZUMBA! 50 minutes elliptical and incline walking…

FridayREST DAY Workout C + 10 min elliptical + 10 min rowing

SaturdayMuddy Monk 10K! 50 minutes easy elliptical/biking/walking

As you can see above I had to back out of the Muddy Monk 10K. My IT band flared up after running 4 miles on Tuesday and did not improve in the slightest. I knew even attempting it would be stupid so I chose not to run it. Not going to lie, I was frustrated and upset. But that’s life, right?


Here is a look at next week’s workouts:


Sunday – REST

Monday – Workout A + Cardio intervals

Tuesday – Cardio + Core workout

Wednesday – Workout B + 20 minutes steady state cardio

Thursday – Cardio + Core workout (Zumba only if my IT band is better)

Friday – Workout C + Cardio intervals

Saturday – ??? depends on IT band or REST

Sunday – REST

I’m excited to try the workouts in this phase because we use pulsing reps… I don’t think I’ve ever done this kind of workout before so it will be interesting to try! I know they’re very effective in strength classes I’ve taken!

And just so I don’t leave you all hanging, here’s a sneak peak into my weekend…

photo 369542

PROM DRESS! Awkward closet selfie… I had to show Kelsey after I bought it since she was very involved in my dress search…


What’s the best thing you did this weekend?


Don’t forget, if you want your book review of The Life You’ve Imagined included send me an email with a link to your post or your review!

Chocolate Oat Bran & BBC Week 1

Good morning everyone! I hope you’re all having a good weekend! Mine is going well, although I have to say my throat is not so happy – still not showing much improvement although I did get it checked and at least it’s not strep! Just have to ride it out I guess… obnoxious.

You know what makes up for it though? This AMAZING Chocolate Protein Oatbran I’ve been eating since spring break a few weeks ago! I made it every single day while I was there and I’m FINALLY sharing the recipe today! First though, let’s take a look at last week’s workouts and then what I have coming up for this week. As you all remember, I started Best Body Boot Camp at the beginning of last week and so far so good! My only complaint – my legs are SO SORE! Haha it makes running harder (as does my throat) so I ended up skipping out on a LOT of running/cardio this week.

Sunday – Workout A (strength) plus 20 minutes of steady state cardio

Monday – Cardio intervals (on the BBC plan)

Tuesday – Workout B (strength) plus 20 minutes of steady state cardio

WednesdayCardio intervals (on the BBC plan) REST DAY (my throat needed it)

ThursdayRest Day (maybe a yoga class or zumba…) ZUMBA! + 15 min elliptical

Friday5-6 mile run Workout C + 10 min elliptical + 15 min incline walking

SaturdayWorkout C (circuit style workout) “REST DAY”

As you can see, I still managed to get 5 official workouts in, including all three strength workouts for boot camp. I put “rest day” on Saturday in quotation marks because I spent 4 hours Friday and 6 hours Saturday on my feet walking around tying to find a dress for an event I’m going to. No luck, but I was exhausted and my feet hurt. Hence the bonus rest day on Saturday. When I got home I only had about 2.5 hours until I needed to leave and meet up with Lindsay to watch the Michigan game, so I took those hours to lay down. Throat + shopping + unexpectedly waking up at 4am three days in a row was not conducive to a workout. Haha it was conducive to watching Once Upon a Time/attempting to nap.

Here is what I have coming up for this week:

april 7th

Sunday – Workout A (strength) plus 20 minutes of steady state cardio

Monday – Cardio intervals (on the BBC plan)

Tuesday – Workout B (strength) plus 20 minutes of steady state cardio

Wednesday – Cardio intervals (on the BBC plan)

Thursday – ZUMBA!

Friday – REST DAY

Saturday – Muddy Monk 10K!


Saturday is the Muddy Monk Double Down 10K/20K, which I’m nervous about since I haven’t actually been running too much recently, but I know it will be fun which is the whole point. It’s a 10K course and while you’re running you can choose to either stop at 10K or do the loop a second time for 20K. Obviously I’m only doing 10… but it’s a fun concept plus I LOVE trail races so it should be fun.

Now, what I know you were all waiting for – the recipe!

photo 1 (11)

Chocolate Protein Oat Bran


1/3-1/2 Cup Oat Bran

1/2 cup milk (I use almond milk)

1 cup water (+ more if necessary)

1 tsp psyllium husk (optional)

1 T cocoa powder

1 scoop protein powder (can also use 3 egg whites or 1 whole egg)

1 packet stevia (2 if using psyllium husk)


Heat oat bran, milk and water on stove until it’s partially cooked (still plenty of liquid left). Mix in stevia, cocoa powder and psyllium husk. If using the psyllium husk, after a minute or so it will significantly thicken your oat bran. I often add a bit more water at this point so there is enough to help mix in the protein powder, usually about 1/4 cup. Add in protein powder and mix until at your desired thickness. Top with PB/AB and fruit, and serve!


If using the psyllium husk, it does give it a bit more of a “weird” taste, which is why I add an extra packet of stevia. Why do I add psyllium husk? Well, personally, it helps with my digestion, plus I like the bonus volume. You could also use flax or chia seeds instead if that’s what you have, since those are great sources of Omega 3s. Mess with mix-ins and toppings – this is a pretty basic recipe that you can do anything with!


Do you workout much when you have a sore throat/cough? How do you handle it?

Ever have chocolate for breakfast? What flavor oat bran would you invent if you could make any flavor?

Best Body Boot Camp Review

HAPPY FRIDAY!!! I hope you all have had a good week, and that those of you who celebrate Christmas are gearing up for a great long weekend! I am SO EXCITED For today to be OVER! I have my last final tonight at 6pm (seriously, could we drag this out any longer??) and then it’s home to finish packing, get some sleep and head to KANSAS CITY in the morning! Who wouldn’t be pumped for 8 hours in the car with this face?:


Granted, she’ll probably look more like this:


Basically, I’m excited. Just ready to go home and enjoy my last ever winter break! I do, however, have a serious hurdle to get over before I go home: I am sick. Legitimate fever last night, couldn’t sleep, want to die, whole body hurts, sick. I have 4 things I have to do today and they all sound daunting: walk Neville (my goldfish) to my brother’s apartment so they can take care of him while I’m gone for a month, pick up a prescription, pack, and go all the way down to school to take a final. I’m really hoping I start feeling better… Right now I’m going to try and go back to bed… Wish me luck!

So I mentioned on Sunday that I’d do a final re-cap of Tina’s Best Body Boot Camp this week, so here we go!


From Tina’s Site:

The Best Body Fitness site focuses on all around health and wellness. I firmly believe that a body treated well and challenged to achieve new heights is our own, personal “best body”. Stronger or leaner may be a side effect, but the focus is on a healthier and happier you through living a fit lifestyle. I want to extend that goal and motivation to all people, while also showing that fitness can be FUN. Enter Best Body Bootcamp!

Bootcamp is an 8 week program, broken up into 4 phases, each lasting two weeks long. For each phase we are given 3 strength workouts: A, B, & C. We do them in one week, and then repeat them in the second week of that phase. She also gives us up to two cardio workouts a week. These are some of my favorite because I can make up my own HIIT workouts, but I prefer following ones that she’s put together. Finally, the 6th day of the week is cardio of choice or an extra rest day, and the 7th day is a rest day.

A great part about Tina’s Bootcamp is how flexible it is. At the end of each workout document she sends out she includes modifications for each move depending on if you want to make it easier, harder or do it at home without gym equipment.

Another thing I love? The accountability. There is a facebook group where we can all ask questions and encourage one another. I find myself checking it all the time! We also are each sent a google document where kept track of 2 goals per week and our workouts. You earn points for filling out the form and can win prizes, including a cash prize at the end. Here’s an example of one of my weeks:


I enjoy participating in the bootcamp for both the accountability and it’s a great way to mix up my workout routine. I don’t always love the workouts (as I mentioned in previous posts, the circuit/burpee phase was not my favorite) but that’s okay, because I modified it for myself. Then there are other phases where I learn new techniques that I absolutely love! Plus, it’s only eight weeks so I feel like the constant change in phases makes time fly by!

If you’re interested in participating in the next phase of Bootcamp (ALL NEW workouts – she doesn’t recycle!) then visit THIS SITE for more information. It’s only $25 for 8 weeks and part of that goes towards the $$ prizes at the end.

The next round of bootcamp begins January 7th and registration closes on December 31st! If you have more questions, check out the FAQ page.


Have you ever followed an organized workout plan?


Are you a part of an facebook group pages that you participate in a lot?

BBC–Week 6

I hope you’re all having a great weekend! I have a very busy weekend, but everything planned is a lot of fun and I get to see a lot of people, so it’s alright by me! I’m also excited because this upcoming week is my last week of classes and they’re all make-up days for the days we missed over the semester for holidays. In other words, several are cancelled because the teachers didn’t need the extra day!


This past week was week 6 for Tina’s Best Body Boot Camp, which means we only have 2 weeks and one phase left! As I mentioned last week, I’m editing the workouts for this week. Although I’m following the general plan of 3 days of strength and then cardio/intervals, I’m not really doing the workouts… As I said before I’m not a circuit/burpee fan so if I’m dreading the workout then that just doesn’t make it fun for me. Am I being a baby about it? Yea. Am I okay with that? Yea. Right now I have too much stress to not look forward to my workouts!

Anyway, speech over. Here were my workouts this past week:

Monday – 20 minute elliptical warm up, then a full body strength workout. I love making up my own strength workouts while I’m at the gym. My only rule is that I do supersets, which means I do exercise A, then exercise B, then back to A for set 2 and so on until I do 3 sets of each exercise. That way I’m not sitting between sets, much more efficient!

Tuesday – 50 minutes of cardio on various machines. This included a .5 mile run after which I decided not to run for 2 weeks… ugh.

Wednesday – 30 minutes of upper-body supersets with cardio mixed in. To keep my heart rate up, I did 10 minutes of warm up on the elliptical, then after each superset I jumped back on for 5 minutes. Did 30 minutes total on the elliptical.

Thursday – Spinning! I needed to workout super early Thursday so I could shower and then walk to my PT appointment at 7:30, so I figured the 5:45am spinning class would get my butt out the door. Unfortunately afterwards my PT told me spinning is doing no favors to my IT band… So no more of that.

Friday – REST

Saturday – Yoga Sculpt at Core Power Yoga. I’ll talk more about this when I re-cap my weekend, but I went to a sculpt class since I’d gone a few times last year thinking it would be fun. Oh it was fun, and ROUGH! Haha I am so sore this morning!

Sunday – ?? Haven’t decided! As I’m writing this I kind of want to just go get some school work done since I’ve done zero this weekend before the events I have to attend later. So today might be another rest day, or I might try and work in some long walks. Either way I think I’ll be taking it easier, I just want to move a bit to help with my soreness.


Here is my workout plan for next week:

Dec 3 workouts

We got the FINAL PHASE from Tina a few days ago and I’m really excited about it! This phase includes several tabata style workouts, and I love that because you only have to do the move for 20 seconds (with 10 seconds rest) a few times. For some reason it seems so much more manageable to me if you just have to push it for 20 seconds and then you get a break!

I’m also traveling to Charleston, SC on Thursday evening this week for a wedding on Saturday, and then coming back on Sunday afternoon. I don’t know what my plans are on Friday yet, so if I can work in an at-home version of Workout C from Boot camp, that’s great. Or I might try and take a class for fun because I think they have a barre class studio on the roof of a building! And if I don’t workout? That’s okay too.

Saturday I know I’m going to Jazzercise with my friend Amy Lee. We went for a little over a year together about 4 times a week and loved it. I miss going with her! Then Sunday I know I’ll be booked so I’m calling that a rest day so I can focus on enjoying my time there and not worrying about exercise.

I’m excited! It will be a busy week but hopefully a good one!


What’s your favorite exercise class?

Do you try and plan workouts when you travel, or do you take off?