spinach mushroom quinoa

spinach mushroom quinoa || Journey for JessiThis is such a simple, yet filling clean meal to cook.  I have been making A LOT of quinoa dishes lately, mostly because quinoa is a great vegan protein source and fills me up!  It is also so easy to make on my meal prep Sundays and store for the week.  Sometimes (a majority of the times), it is difficult for me to get a good “after” picture of my recipes.  This is attributed to my tendency to take tastes (eat the entire thing) before I snap a pic.  That just means it’s that good right?

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snacking on the go

snacking on the go || Journey for JessiYesterday was busy, busy for me.  I woke up at 5:30am to get to my cycling class at 6:30am (it is 100% worth it to me), and I did not get home until 7:30 PM!  Eep!  Thankfully, I am such a planner and I knew it was going to be a looong day on campus, so I was able to pack accordingly.  When I say “pack,”  I, of course, mean food and snacks to keep me going.  I usually like to sit down and enjoy my food without distractions, but sometimes, a girl has to multi-task.  

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hearts, hearts and more hearts

hearts, hearts and more hearts || Journey for JessiI have been both single and in relationships for Valentine’s day, so I speak from experience when I say that Valentine’s Day is a very weird holiday on both parts.  V-day has always just be eh for me.  I don’t hate it, I am not its number one fan.  In my opinion, it is just a holiday in which everyone gets all stressed out and–more often times than not–just straight up sad on the 14th.  Please people.  Calm down.  If you have a significant other, just relax.  Spend the day together.  Do not build these huge expectations of grandeur.  My best Valentine’s day with my boyfriend at the time was a night spend at home making dinner together and watching Scrubs.  If you are single, oh my gosh!  Enjoy it!  Once I embraced being single (and happy) this Valentine’s Day, I am more in favor of this day of love than I used to be.

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stuffy sleepy and sick

stuffy sleepy and sick || Journey for JessiI admit it.  I was sick last week.  Despite ALL of my precautions and sanitary behavior the week before, like my uptake in vitamin C for example.  I guess it is difficult to fight a college community teeming with infection.  It did not turn out to be the flu, thank goodness, although Wednesday (at my worst) had me worried.  I am feeling way better now, though still runny nose, my lethargy and head congestion are fading.  So how did I beat this week?  Here are my tips to take care of myself while staying on a fitness program.

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dear jessi

dear Jessi || Journey for JessiDear Jessi,

I have been thinking about you a lot lately, and that usually means I am missing you more so than usual.  Every little (or huge) reminder of your constant presence never ceases to bring me back.  It is truly amazing how much you are still touching my life.  I would not be the person I am now without you.  You have turned my life into an ever-shining bliss of happiness and sunshine.    You continue to inspire me to always be encouraging towards others.  In fact, I am now a Beachbody Coach helping and empowering others to find health and fitness–something that I never would have had the courage to pursue if it was not for your encouraging voice in the back of my mind throughout the process.  I want to help people just like you have/are helping me: that is to be the best version of myself no matter what, to always challenge myself in order to grow and to constantly strive to live life with heart, health and happiness.  

Recently, I have been too wrapped up in bringing light to others’ lives (which is amazing), but I only say “too wrapped up” because I started to settle back into my “comfort” zone again–not like before thank goodness, but enough to become a little too stressed and anxious like the old Emily (you know the one).  However, you saw this before I did and you intervened ASAP.  This may sound silly to others, but you know exactly what I am talking about.  You tricky trickster.  Last night at my cooking class training, I met the CSU’s “new” nutritionist–Kelsey.  I could not believe it!  Especially when she said she was teaching cycling again at the Rec.  When I heard this I knew.  I knew this was you reaching out to me.  It took everything in me to not bust out cry-laughing, but I managed not to (unlike now…)  You knew I needed this push because the truth is, I have not stepped into that cycling studio since you left.  I could not even imagine what would happen when I sat down next to your bike…

Regardless of my fears, I took your challenge.  This morning, I got up at 5:30 am and headed to Kelsey’s cycling class.  At first, it was a little overwhelming, but as class started, I felt stronger–physically from Kelsey’s crazy good cardio class of course, but also emotionally.  I overcame this emotional challenge of being in that studio–a place where our friendship really grew every Tuesday/Thursday at 7 am freshman and sophomore year.  It was good to be back, Jess.  I cannot thank you enough once again.  You inspire me, you encourage me and you challenge me every day to be a better human being.  No one else may understand or see the value of this victory, but to me, it is another page turned in the story of my “Journey for Jessi.”

love you always,

Em

cheat days don’t make you fat

cheat days don't make you fat || Journey for JessiYes.  I see you glorious plate of homemade Mary’s Mountain Cookies… Yes.  You did overcome my will power tonight.  Yes.  I am talking to cookies.  So I had an off day today–a “cheat day” if you please.  I am human after all.  A human living in a society filled with yummy goodies and sweets that seem to be at the center of every social event.  Even if that event is a Saturday night at home with the roommates and a friend brings over famously good treats.  This cheat day of mine involved a bite of each type of treat (plus a brownie and cookie quarter), 2 processed protein bars, and milk chocolate (with almonds if that makes it better?)  My cheat day won’t make me “fat,” however unhealthy these items are.  I won’t wake up tomorrow with my 7 pounds of fat back on my body.  It will make me stronger, though.  

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ski break

ski break || Journey for JessiLast weekend was a blast!  I went down to Winter Park for the weekend to go skiing–a typical pass time for the Colorado student I have discovered.  It was a nice break to exert some energy on the snowy mountains and be at one with nature and away from the crowded gym and college campus.  I love any type of vacation that involves a physical activity paired with it like skiing, surfing, hiking, biking, etc.  Although I did have a “cheat” weekend, I always made sure to keep everything in balance too.

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