My First Spa Day

All good things must come to an end!

That’s been our motto for the past couple of days as everyone staying at our Florida home has been going back to their real homes for work and school. Mom and I were the last two left, so we spent Saturday cleaning and packing up the house and all our belongings. Despite “closing up shop”, it’s been an awesome (and super long) vacation, so there is absolutely nothing to be sad about.

Friday

Especially when you end the vacation with a spa day! This was my first spa day since I’m eighteen years old now. All my little girl dreams came true.

Pre-spa breakfast was avocado toast with a dippy egg and a banana on the side.

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We went to the Ritz Carlton spa for the day (ooh la la, I know), and the staff was incredibly kind (like, sometimes I was uncomfortable with how nice they were). They even allowed my day at the spa to be free of charge since my mom and aunt were both paying for day passes and facials.

Four thumbs up for customer service (I’m counting my toe thumbs)!!

Our spa day started with moves at the fitness center. I ran for 20 minutes on the treadmill and then completed Hillary’s arm and ab superset workout with 10-20 burpees after each superset instead of kettlebell swings.

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Thanks for creeping on me during my workout, Madre 

I was feelin’ weeeeak by the end of my workout, so a nourishing lunch afterwards was just perfect.

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“Bento box” with seared ahi tuna, mixed greens, three bean salad, and farro salad

I savored every last bite of this plate since it was all so delicious and fresh. The price was also great for all this food (look at all that tuna)!

Following lunch, we showered in the snazzy spa showers, put on the classic white robes, and then chillaxed.

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You bet I had some of those yogurt pretzels

I attempted to go into the sauna, but I only stayed for 5 minutes because I felt like a baking cookie. And the steam room…lasted 5 seconds. I couldn’t see anything and I couldn’t breathe. Nuhthanks.

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The jacuzzi on the other hand…

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…yeah I could do that. I’m such a juvenile.

I spent my time in the jacuzzi for a bit, but I dried off and headed back to the empty studio in the fitness center to stretch while my mom and aunt were getting their faces lathered and massaged. I also kept snacking on the complimentary apples and snack mix, as well as the infused water. Alllllll the day. Strawberry-infused water was my favorite!

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I had a wonderful stretching session by my lonesome, and I even did a tiny bit of ballet at the barre. Oh how I miss it!

Is it sad that I was sore from stretching the next day? I guess I deprived my muscles of oxygen for a little too long during my deep stretches (after not having stretched in forever).

Eventually, our rejuvenating spa day came to an end. (Not that I really needed rejuvenation after a two-week vacation in Florida…) We later joined the dudes for dinner at a Vietnamese restaurant.

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Rice vermicelli with grilled shrimp and abundant herbs and veggies

Then we went home for ice cream to balance out all the greens eaten throughout the day. 😉

Saturday

Florida was super chilly (by Florida standards), so hot oats hit the spot for breakfast!

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½ c. quick oats cooked in ½ c. water and ½ c. 2% milk // half a sliced banana, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, vanilla protein powder, pinch of salt stirred in // glob of peanut butter on top

As I mentioned at the top of this post, mom and I spent the day cleaning and packing while also dropping off family members at the airport for their respective flights. We did take a shopping break at TJMaxx in the late morning though!

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I’m season-confused. I got a sweater and three pairs of shorts, and I’m going back to single-digit temperatures in Boston. Spring will come soon enough, right?

A clean-out-the-fridge lunch was in order that afternoon: avocado toast with our last egg + practically half a box of spinach with tons of feta cheese. Plus an unpictured clementine and a million veggie straws aka one of the most addicting snacks out there.

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Oh my goodness, too many leaves in my stomach. But I enjoyed this simple lunch nonetheless!

After a long day of cleaning (and church in the evening), Madre offered to take me out to dinner at Seasons 52, a restaurant we had both been wanting to try for a while. I gratefully agreed!

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To start: grilled chicken pesto flatbread

The flatbread was to die for. Everything was packed with flavor but not too salty— a balance that is hard to come by!

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Mom’s order: pork tenderloin with sweet potato mash and roasted vegetables

She shared a good hunk of pork tenderloin with me, and mannnn was it delicious. I think I closed my eyes at one point as I savored the tender, flavorful piece of meat. Dishes like these prevent me from becoming a vegetarian.

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My order: “Winter Vegetable Tasting” that included citrus farro quinoa salad, a black bean & veggie soft taco, roasted golden beets, broccoli rabe, and grilled tofu with fruit salsa

There was not a thing on this plate that we didn’t enjoy! The citrus farro quinoa salad was our favorite though. We must re-create it at home!

I totally saved room for dessert, since we kept seeing waiters and waitresses walk around to other tables with plates of dessert shots.

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They brought out an assortment of mini desserts in shot glasses from which you could choose. If I remember correctly, they had: carrot cake, chocolate peanut butter mousse, pecan pie, s’mores, caramel macchiato, strawberry cannoli, key lime pie, blueberry lemon custard, and raspberry brownie.

Talk about tough life choices.

Without much hesitation, I chose the carrot cake, and mom chose the raspberry brownie. I ended up eating all of mine and most of hers. They were mini, so it’s a little more acceptable to eat 1.5 desserts, yes?

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Thanks for the fabulous dinner, Madre!

Sunday

Since we went to church on Saturday evening, mom and I got to sleep in before doing some last minute cleaning of the house.

I was also able to squeeze in some moves outside as it started to drizzle a bit: 5 minute jump rope warmup + Purely Twins’ crazy burpee leg workout (loved this!!!) + 8 minute ab tabata.

The ab tabata was 4 rounds of 20 seconds work, 10 seconds rest of weighted Russian twists, modified V-ups, crossover knee to elbow planks, and spiderman planks.

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I washed that shirt before wearing it again, promise.

As always, a day of travel calls for overnight oats!

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Now we’re en route to New York, but this time we’re taking the auto train rather than road tripping like we did on our way down to Florida. There’s snow in the northeast and I’m not sure if our bodies are ready for the temperature shock.

I’ve obviously been spoiled silly on this vacation, but I am looking forward to school, schedules, and just feeling productive. Nevertheless, I am beyond thankful for the family time and amazing experiences we’ve had in Florida!

P.S. I used so many parentheses in this post. Sorry, I love asides apparently.

So tell me:

Have you ever had a spa day?

Have you ever gotten sore from stretching? Please say yes.

What is your favorite cold-weather food?

Which of the dessert shots would you choose?

Being Judgmental of Your Own Hunger Cues

I have concluded that video games/virtual worlds are not my cup o’ tea.

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“Oh I’m supposed to follow the arrow!”

My brother and I took our cousins to Disney Quest— Disney’s multi-floor arcade and video game attraction— for a fun “kids” day while our parents dined at a fancy restaurant. It was super fun spending time with the dudes, but I can only stare at colorful lights and crazy pixels for so long (ironic because I can look at a computer screen for quite a long time…but that’s different from looking at crashing cars and flashing neon lights).

I was literally saying Hail Mary’s before going into one of those virtual roller coaster things that require you to go into a capsule, be strapped in, and stare at a virtual roller coaster on a screen while you’re being tossed around inside the capsule. Bleccchhhhh.

It’s no wonder that I was perfectly content just drawing Minnie Mouse at the “Animation Academy” lesson.

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My cousin said she was a chubby Minnie. I call it baby Minnie.

Air hockey, giant Fruit Ninja, and Dance Dance Revolution were also pretty fun 🙂

We ended our night at Splitsville “Luxury Bowling” for dinner (even though we didn’t bowl). We shared fried calamari to start, and then I had the ahi tuna salad with Asian pear dressing. Tasty!

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Earlier yesterday morning, I ate a nice and filling breakfast that consisted of butt-end toasts with sunflower seed butter and peanut butter; plain Greek yogurt with honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, and banana slices; and some mango.

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I woke up at 8:30 after going to bed at 2:30 AM, so I actually went back to sleep for another hour after breakfast and some blog reading. When I re-awoke, I ate another banana and then tackled some moves. Yesterday was a 5 minute jump rope warmup, foam rolling, and this at-home chipper workout from Tina.

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{via}

This is a GREAT workout. Challenging, quick, and no equipment required! However, I did use a 36# barbell for 50 of the squats and an abmat for the sit-ups for a little bit of an extra challenge. I also did jump lunges instead of alternating lunges. My quads were Jell-O.

Lunch followed immediately after! I ate some bites of my mom’s leftover seafood mofongo from Tuesday night, and then I made myself avocado toast and two-egg scramble with spinach and feta. I also ate a clementine after this— they’re sweet and juicy this time of year!

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We ate outside because the weather was perfection. I expressed my love for this moment on Instagram 🙂

Now I want to put on my serious-ish face and talk to you about something. (Warning: some of the following content may be triggering to those struggling with eating disorders. Take care! ♥ )

judgmental hunger cues

Whenever I go on day-long outings with family and friends other than my immediate family, I tend to fall into the dreaded comparison trap when it comes to food (obviously not a fault of my family or friends whatsoever!). I’ve gotten over the comparison trap quite successfully in college, but new situations always seem to throw me right back into it.

For example, I love breakfast, so I’m going to eat a big and/or dense morning meal such as the one I ate yesterday. Then I’ll see that every other person is eating half a waffle with a glass of juice or just a bowl of cereal, and they’ll be completely satisfied. “Oh…”

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This is not to say that there is anything wrong with small breakfasts if that’s your jazz!

It’s easier for me to brush this off because I know I tend to have bigger breakfasts than most of my friends, but that’s what works and that’s what I love. However, three hours later I might be hungry for a snack while no one else is.

There are also times when I’ll be hungry, have a snack, but then at dinner be just as hungry as everyone else who did not eat a snack since lunch. And sometimes I’ve had a bigger lunch than them.

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“Is there something wrong with me? Am I just thinking of food too much? (possibly.) C’mon, Alison, you can’t be hungry right now. You shouldn’t be.”

Shouldn’t. The judgmental word that messes with my brain and results in me overcomplicating food even more.

When I start judging my hunger cues, I sometimes end up eating more than I usually would once mealtime comes, because I don’t want to feel snacky later when no one else feels snacky. I am tempted to restrict (on a much, much smaller scale than I did during my eating disorder) or “compensate”.

{Allow me to clearly say: I have thankfully come a long way from my eating disorder, and I believe that I am at a healthy place mentally and physically. However, I think I speak on behalf of many people who have experienced EDs when I say that there are occasionally residual struggles that never truly disappear.}

In realizing the harm of judging my own hunger cues, I have also come to realize that I do not have the right to judge others’ eating habits (of course, unless something was clearly concerning). I used to wonder why some of my friends weren’t as hungry during lunch in high school, and I would criticize them for not eating enough. In reality, I was insecure about my own eating habits, and I unfortunately took it out on others.

God has mercifully given me the strength to deal with the temptation of judgement of myself and others, and I have been able to trust my body’s hunger cues. I know what works for me. Some days it’s a lot of snacks, and some days it’s three square meals. Some days I eat every meal three hours later than “normal” meal times, and some days I have totally disorganized mealtimes.

Our bodies are smart cookies (or smart banana in my case 😉 ) that all work uniquely for each individual. Even then, the body works uniquely for a single individual on different days.

There’s no place for judgement.

I’d also like to reiterate here that I almost never show everything I eat throughout the day on the blog!

Alrighty, I’m done.

Hope you all have a beautiful day! Go easy on yourself.

So tell me:

Do you ever find yourself judging your own eating habits?

Do you like visual-motion/simulator rides?

What is one delicious thing you ate yesterday?