Okay so yeah I have been an Influenster kind of girl for a while. I read about the site on someone's blog and while I couldn't snag an invite from them, a few weeks after I initially tried to sign up I was sent an invite. Not too long after that I was sent my first VoxBox and could say without a doubt that the program was super duper free and legit. There's never been a dime exchanged between us and I have managed to get a fair number of products to review, use, and in quite a few cases make part of my staple products. The food in particular has been great. Even the things that I haven't loved someone in my house (usually my mom) or network really enjoys them. We all LOVED the Nonni products. We were sent the THINAddictives and woosah they were amazing which led to the biscotti and other things. The hair care, skin, and nail products have been good as well to see how my mood and palette work with things I wouldn't have normally bought myself.
I think that's one of the best things about Influenster truth be told. They don't send you things you'd never use but they attempt to push you beyond your standard fare. As someone who was committed to doing better this year in that regard Influenster is a big asset to that. Even when I had an issue because I moved to like super small town in not a Wal-mart kind of state they worked to get me the product so that I could review it and I have to say it's been the best foot care product I've had in a while. My feet are always silky smooth after I use Freeman Barefoot Spa line. I heart it.
I have invited quite a few friends to join and I'll be honest for some it's harder to commit to the process of getting products, reviewing them and trying to speak about them in a good honest way. I talk too much as it is so there's not a huge issue there for me. I was worried that a negative review would smack me on the hand for future boxes but in my experience they want honest feedback While the CC cream I was sent didn't match my skin tone in the slightest I was able to say that AND talk about what it was able to do for me regardless.
Best product from them EVER is probably not one that anyone else would think of really. Last year I was sent a Goody product, I've gotten those before and like the brand outside of reviewing, that was a new Dri Wick like product that was made into a headband. Now I'm not a super pink kind of gal but i was excited at the idea of this headband as I tend to sweat a LOT and mostly in my scalp when I workout. If little baby angels could have descended from heaven and sang after that first workout they would have. While the rest of my body was definitely in sweat mode and my face was glistening no sweat came from my scalp onto my face. No it doesn't stop my scalp from going yeah exercise and downpour but it definitely isolates it and makes me less of a mess post workout.
All in all I can say it's been a great ride with Influenster and if you are interested and not part of the program yet please let me know. I'd be happy to invite you. We can review off into the sunset together. Like for serious, just let me know.
Have a good night all.
November 18, 2014
November 14, 2014
So I officially started with my trainer on the 2nd but I totally forgot about the 90 million things I had on tap for last week so it meant I didn't really get a full week in on the training schedule and managing my diet without a lot of distractions. I'm going to give you a sectional update as I think I will make more sense than blabbing for the next few paragraphs.
Meal Plan: Is actually really flexible and is helping me work on eating 1) on schedule and 2) enough so that I'm not starving and 3) not so much that I'm overindulging. Tracking everything I eat has shown me some days I'm hungrier than others but have managed to stay within my allotted daily calories all but one day and I was 20 ish calories over that day but really who has ONE fajita and goes to bed? Best of all I'm learning a lot of fantastic new recipes that still indulge my major food craves but aren't horrible unhealthy.
Workouts: When I was having a better time of things at the gym this year I was there three to four times a week for at least an hour and while I got a good sweat in I was also getting bored and losing motivation often. I've managed to make it all three scheduled days this week and each was a different challenge but perfect at the same time. Although I'm slow sometimes it seems like Monday is more of an ab and upper body day plus cardio. Wednesday is a good general workout day. Today is a butt and cardio day. All of it was good. I think I was sore a few weeks ago because I hadn't been at the gym regularly in a WHILE. This week my body feels great, I can tell what the exercises are honing in on and I feel accomplished when I'm done. Sweaty too but accomplished.
Trainer/Elizabeth: She rocks, not a lot else to say but who am I to stop talking prematurely. She's very encouraging, supportive and answers my questions about workouts and food like super fast. I know it's early in the process but she really is fantastic. And if nothing else it seems like I'm losing weight. Things aren't fitting the same and six pounds isn't enough to account for all of it. Can you lose weight in your feet? Cause really shoes are feeling a little BIG lately. Regardless this feels like the best present I've given to myself in a while.
How goes your journey to healthy?
November 10, 2014
So I haven't checked in for a few days my bad. I mentioned in my last posts (October 31 and today) that I had hired a trainer from fitorbit. I need the guilt/encouragement/guidance of my trainer. Yep I'm claiming her. Before our week together really started I made sure to start cutting back on what I was eating and how I was eating and I made sure to get into the gym because I was pretty sure I wasn't going to be able to squeeze in the full workout this past Friday and Saturday because of work stuff. From that sad weight I posted a few weeks ago I am officially down six pounds. I have already had six workouts, including abbreviated ones on Friday and Saturday when I was in conference mode. If I hadn't stumbled upon the brownies I MIGHT have done better with the weight loss this week but any weight off is great at this point. This week I can focus again and attend to both diet and workout. Today felt great and while I'm a little sore but feeling great. Back to the gym on Wednesday and Friday and Saturday. Let's see what the next weigh in gives us. How's life treating your workouts?
Well except I don't. If I'm being perfectly honest I'm glad there is still hair on my head. Ulta is the only salon that has my preferred Affirm Fibre Guard relaxer. And I had found a great hairdresser that I trusted to do it. When I went in for a random styling I found out that she was gone and likely would not be back. Turns out most of the staff has bolted from Ulta. I know that kind of thing happens but seriously my hair and patience were at an end so I had to trust a new girl with the process. Issue #1 came with them having my relaxer but nothing else to take care of it. None of the other components were there so I had to go with Mizani which my hair fights like it's a robber trying to steal something from an old lady. Even leaving it on much longer than intended there was still a bit of texture that I wasn't wanting as I do like my hair BONE straight post relaxer. She did listen to me about that part though and was pliable if that is the right word. She clearly hadn't done very many relaxers and was even more out of sorts when it came to the blow out and flat iron process which to me seems like a no brainer. I coached her threw that and left satisfied if not bone straight.
After the last relaxer did kind of the same thing cause she was rushing I am feeling more texlaxed than anything else. My hair fully on my shoulders but does need to be evened out some more so that's the plan for the next few months. I am pretty sure that after swim classes end I'm going to shoot for some braids so I can work out without it being stress on my hair trying to style and put up out of the sweat. I'm still uneasy about swimming in braids but want to check with a few people to make sure I'm not freaking out unnecessarily. I refuse to let my growing and graying hair slow down the fitness train. More on that in the next post. How was your last wash day?
October 31, 2014
So this blog is meant to document both my hair journey, which I am usually pretty good about, and my fitness journey which let's face it has been hit or miss. I have lamented many times that I would love a trainer. Preferably one that was already at my gym so I didn't have to travel to yet another gym to get trained. When I joined the Y so that I could take classes in addition to the swimming I thought I could find a trainer there but literally no one has ever called me about it so I was getting discouraged again. Yep I had added the yoga classes to my swimming classes but two hours a week of sweating and moving my body wasn't putting a dent in the spare set of tires around my belly. I was still wanting plan B to come together but I wasn't putting much effort in after getting no where with local folks for months.
As I was tending to Influenster and my participation in the Vidal Sassoon campaign, I noticed another relatively new thing on there called VoxPerks. I clicked on it and actually paid attention to the one I had scrolled over before for a website called FitOrbit.com. Influenster was offering a discount on registration so I said what the hell let me check it out. Turns out I was pretty impressed with the program and went through the registration. The sign up is easy enough and actually more detailed than I would have thought. From there you are given your top three matches but can keep looking at others if you don't think you will click with the ones they suggested. Oh and if you hate your trainer you can switch to another one which I thought was great too.
I chose my trainer, Elizabeth, because she seemed to be good at all the things I wanted to work on and was friendly. We started narrowing down my wants, interests, routines and habits even more as well as any food limitations I have. She's been great in the few days we've been working together so that I can officially start on Sunday. I spent part of the day working on part of what will become my Friday workouts. I went partially because I haven't been in a while and partially because next Friday and Saturday I will have to work to get a good workout in because I will be at a conference. I totally forgot about that when I picked the 2nd as my start date but I will do something even if it's a short workout. It was great to be moving again at the gym that got my lazy behind off the sofa in the first place but woosah it was a killer and I didn't even finish it all. It's good to know that it's set up to be a good sweaty workout and as feared I need to mix them up instead of doing them in order because my upper thighs hate me right now lol.
I spent the rest of my afternoon/evening shopping for the things on my new meal plan--that's right no guessing what to eat on top of the workouts--that I didn't already have at home. I did switch out a few things that were allowed switches (yeah I kinda hate broccoli) but for the most part I have the ingredients I need to start things off well. I will still hit the pool and yoga in the morning. And then Sunday morning both Maroon 5 and I will be singing a new tune. In case you have no idea what I'm talking about with my estranged scruffy tattooed yoga enthusiast Jewish rockstar husband I will leave what I mean at the end of this post.
Who has a trainer? Or had one? Or has questions? See ya for the next wash day.
October 26, 2014
This week, as I mentioned in my Fitness Friday post, has been ridiculous. You would think with having two days off I would have had some down time to unwind and let my brain go to happy places but yeah not so much. The end of the week was filled with meetings and exams and awkward conversations, I mean DAMN they were awkward. However, that was done and I was looking out for the weekend workout so that I could get to the last wash day of the week. I'm sure you're wondering what it was the last well let me get to that in a second. I would be remiss to say that the weekend ended up much better with a massage, mani/pedi and that wash day but let's just say I earned it lol.
First wash day was Monday/Tuesday when I had to wash out the results of the previous Saturday's trip to make my body more active. It wasn't bad but because I had been a lazy bum the days following the pool there were way too many tangles and I lost the most hair I have in this stretch. I was sad but knew it was temporary because I was going in for the second wash day to make my hair straight with some heat.
Second wash day came on Wednesday night with someone who seems comfortable with black hair but did mine not so great. Mind you I'm ten weeks post so I'm not expecting miracles but she was giving me volume when I needed straight. The first day afterwards was a mess cause it felt like it was growing by the hour. I set it on flexi rods that night and my hair looked great on day two. Made me mad I hadn't done something to it when I got home and knew it wasn't quite right. That left me primed and ready for Saturday's outing to the Y.
Workout went fine, great even but then I was rushing for the 10 minutes I had to get from the Y to the day spa. Day spa was fantastic and even though I had a new girl doing my hair it felt and looked great when I was done PLUS she gave me a few samples in order to help maintain that during spells between stretches that may hair started looking a mess. I would have taken a photo but I was flipping exhausted at that point and it was time to sleep as much as possible so I did. It would be unfair to take a photo now with sleep all over it but trust me it was good.
So I meant to write this post last week but life got away from me again. I haven't been working out much during the week because it's been ridiculously busy more days than I care to remember right now. But most weekends I've made up for it by hitting the Y for longer than normal workouts. I do yoga for an hour and then go to swim class for 45 minutes at least but I try to stay for an hour. So I have been doing that when I'm not working on the weekend. It's fantastic and I feel great when I get back home. I need to get back to work on the mid week workouts, either by hitting some classes or just doing my solo workout at the gym. I need some more motivation because my levels all came back a tick above the acceptable range when I just had some blood work done. And I need to get back on my better eating habits. Anyone have any suggestions.
October 6, 2014
I was contacted a few weeks ago to give a review of an online eyeglass store, Firmoo.com. In exchange for a free pair of glasses I was just asked to give an honest review of the process, glasses themselves and so on. I was also asked if I knew any bloggers that my like to partake in the offer and honestly I wasn't sure if anyone would or if anyone needed a pair of glasses so I have yet to follow up with that piece. However, if after seeing these glasses you are interested let me know and I'll pass on your name. Even if you don't want to do a review, Firmoo has reinstated their free first pair program so if you want to explore their options please do.
I was due for an eye exam otherwise I would have probably gotten these before the end of September as I was contacted early in the month. I got a new script and the change was negligible again but I felt better having a more accurate view of well my vision. That night I came home and ordered my free pair of glasses. They would have totally been free had I not upgraded the lenses to progressives and the fingerprint resistant coating. All told though even with those upgrades the glasses themselves were 45 bucks. Compared to the pair I got at the store, totally cute retro glasses lol, I paid about a fifth of the price for the same type of glasses. The process was pretty seamless but unless you are good at measuring things like your pupil distance or are fairly certain of your prescription I would recommend having all that measured by a professional before you start. Payment is through Paypal so you don't have to pony up a credit card. The company is based in China so while the glasses are made and shipped quickly it could take a few weeks for your glasses to arrive. By my estimate it was under two from shipping to delivery, maybe a little over a week. They are shipped well in a hard case and protected in a wiping cloth.
This review will focus on my current glasses and the new firmoo pair but when the others come in I will revisit the whole shebang. Now the first thing I noticed was the difference in weight between my old glasses and the firmoo pair. I haven't had plastic frames in years so I was unprepared for how light they felt. These frames are also wider than my current pair so I would need to have them adjusted to wear long term so they stayed in place without me readjusting them. Other than that though the prescription was a tiny bit sharper as it should have been and thus gave me the requisite headache that always comes with new glasses. This is another reason why I am holding off on the final comparison.
The lens thickness looked about the same as my current glasses. There was a little overhang I think because the lenses are plastic but it wasn't something that would make the glasses unwearable. And they also included replacement screws and nose pads which is great as well. So far so good on the firmoo glasses.
There was only one thing that I wasn't expecting and it could be the result of the new coating, or using my camera phone, that is not on my current glasses. As I was preparing to take the up close and personal shots of the frames on my face I noticed that I could see myself in them and their was a green haze to it that I couldn't explain. I walked around the bedroom and through different parts of the house to see if it got better and for the most part it did not. I finally had mom take a photo of me in the new frames to minimize the green thing the most. I only saw that when looking through the phone though and didn't notice it otherwise. I will check it out again when the new lenses come as they have a similar coating on them. I look asleep in the top photo with the new frames and cranky in the photo with the old frames lol.
All in all I think these are decent glasses and as soon as I'm ready to transition over to the new script they will be part of the rotation. I think Firmoo.com would be a good option for those that want a glasses to go with their personalities without having to break the bank when a new mood struck. Or for those that are in need of a new pair but not wanting to shell out a few hundred on designer frames. Be careful with fitting and measurements but otherwise I can see why others have used the site repeatedly. I seriously had no issues from the start of the process to the end. The new glasses should be in hopefully this week and then I can follow up with the more complete review.
Who needs a new pair?