When did you first start blogging and why?
I started blogging at the end of June 2013. I had been a huge avid blog reader for years and I thought it would be a great time to finally get more involved and become a bigger part in the community of healthy living/food/fitness. I loved the strong, beautiful, and confident women in this blogging community and they all made me want to take my health and fitness to the next level each and every day.
What is your most helpful blogging tip?
My most helpful tip would be to blog for yourself first! Don’t worry about accumulating hundreds or thousands of readers. Don’t get caught up in numbers and sponsorships. Write from your heart and write what you love. Your blog is yours first and foremost and should be a reflection of the true you, not some ideal you are trying to imitate. When readers see your genuine posts, that is what they will come back for and all that follows is just icing on the (gluten-free) cake 😉
What is your favorite fitness activity?
When I first started to really get into healthy-living and fitness (post 13 years of being a competitive dancer) I started out with strength training. Lifting weights made me feel so powerful and confident. I love that it allows me to shut my mind off and just zone out counting reps and feeling the burn!
But then I found my love of yoga a year or two later and that has become my most favorite form of fitness. It is not only a fitness activity or workout for me. Yoga is so beautiful and never fails to leave me feeling confident, beautiful, and so stronger (even stronger than when I lift!).
What motivates you?
I want to be the best I can possibly be. That all starts with living a healthy life. I have big dreams for my future and I want to be able to accomplish them. Completing an Ironman, getting my yoga teacher certification, going off to college next year and starting my journey to my dream career. All of these things require me to work hard and take care of my mind, body, and spirit!
What has fitness changed about your life?
Fitness was changed my life in so many ways. After I “retired” from my dance career of 13 years, I was in a bad place mentally. Dance was the only thing I knew and now I needed to find something else to occupy my time. When I discovered strength training and yoga later on I also discovered hoe much I love my body. It amazes me everyday with what it can do. Fitness fills me with energy, joy, and peace. I never feel bad after a workout! I need it everyday, no matter what it is, I need some form of fitness because I would never trade those wonderful feelings it gives me for anything.
What is your favorite pump up song?
I actually hate listening to music when I workout! I know you might think I am crazy, but I am just not a big music person to begin with. I do most of my workouts at home so I like to actually put on CNN and listen to the news while I am pumping iron 😉 I usually don’t pay much attention though and really just fall into my own thoughts and counting reps and sets while blocking everything else out.
What is your favorite running distance?
I have had a long history with exercise induced asthma so I have not run in many years. But I have been conditioning my lungs for awhile now with HIIT cardio and cycling so I am now looking into starting a running plan in the next few months. I am also looking into doing a 5k this summer and have found a few options that might just work out.
What is your favorite motivational quote/mantra?
I am not a big quote or mantra fan. I find them pretty mundane, but I do have a few words that I try to life by. Strength, stability, and confidence. I think these 3 words are so important and when you can find all three within yourself I believe you can be unstoppable.
What is your favorite piece of running/fitness gear?
My favorite piece of fitness gear would be my yellow Aurorae yoga mat! I received it for Christmas last year and fell in love. I was in dire need of a new mat as my old pink one was literally falling apart. This yoga mat is awesome! Soft, durable, no-slip, and I love the sunny color. It makes my yoga practices that much better
What is your favorite “treat”?
I really don’t eat many things that you would call “treats.” First of all I really hate sweets and candy. Junk/processed foods are not my thing. But what I do call my “healthy treat” is a big beautiful apple and some sort of nut butter. I love having this as my before bed snack. Give me an apple and nut butter any day and I will be your best friend forever!
What is a long term running or fitness goal you have for yourself?
As I mentioned before I have always dreamed of doing an Ironman. But first I need to start running and learn how to swim. Big goals right there, but I have time and need to accomplish smaller things (like a 5k) first! More realistic though is getting my 200 hour yoga teacher certification this summer before I go off to college. This is something real that I will be accomplishing and I can not wait!
Tell us something unique about yourself.
As I have mentioned above, I was a competitive dancer for 13 years of my life. But within that I was also a twirler. Baton twirling was fading out when I started, but I was still able to catch the tail end of it and continued for all my 13 years. It it a beautiful sport and I wish more people would try it. I am a 1st place NJ state champion in the novice and beginner level and would have moved up if I had continued going to the state competitions. It takes so much skill and patience to learn new moves and I have not picked up my baton in 3 years now. I probably have lost most of my ability now, but who knows, it might just be like riding a bike…you never forget!
If you could give one piece of advice to someone who is starting out running, what would it be?
I will switch this question around to fit all forms of fitness since I am no running expert, haha! If you want to start you really just have to go for it! Don’t be scared of what other people will think, don’t let your own fear get in the way either. Test out all kinds of fitness until you find what truly makes you happy and wanting more. Then just keep doing it, practicing, and pushing yourself further and further.
How do you find/make time to train?
Being a high school senior with multiple AP classes, in the college process, running my own blog, and having to simple live can really stress me out. But I know I have to have time to workout or I would go insane! Right when I wake-up I like to get in my morning core routine. Then on the days I lift I like to do my lower body right when I come home from school and upper body later after I have had dinner. For my yoga days I just practice at night after dinner. And when I do my 2 weekly HIIT sessions I like to knock them out right when I get home from school as well. Fitness is a priority for me so I always am able to make time for it.
What’s an accomplishment you are most proud of?
The accomplishment I am most proud of is my blog! I never imagined all the opportunity and connections it have brought me when I hit publish on my first post. I look forward everyday to sharing my passion for health, fitness, and food with everyone in and outside the blogging community. I still find it amazing to see someone post a photo of one of my recipes that they tried out to instagram. It seems so surreal! Who knew this 17 year-old, yoga loving, Celiac foodie would be inspiring people through her rambles! I love that I am able to connect with so many wonderful people, companies, and brands! This blog even landed me my first job which is with Plant Fusion! Not a day goes by now that something amazing happens with my blog or someone reaches out and bring a smile to my face! I love it and I am so proud and happy that I finally took that leap of faith and started my own blog journey!
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