7.22.2014

my 30x30

i am officially 26 and 1/2 years old today, which means only 3.5 years until i'm 30!
i feel ridiculously old...
 
 
...and then i feel even more ridiculous because neither 26.5 nor 30 is old.
 
when they said young people think they're immortal, i chuckled at the idiots who thought they would never age. joke's on me.
 
anywho, it has been a little over four years since i graduated from college and SO many things have happened. my life is drastically different than i ever would have imagined! and since i know just how much can be accomplished in a year, i am convinced i can cross all of these babies off by january 22, 2018. 
wish me luck!

1. obtain a masters degree in higher education.
2. grow my hair to terminal length. 
3. complete a successful spending freeze.
4. participate in the 3.2 run in remembrance.
5. learn to speak a new language and live in the country of origin for a while.
6. work on an organic farm through wwoof.
*i will most likely complete 6 in accordance with 5*
 
7. scratch three destinations off of my travel list.
8. attend mardi gras.
9. try something i never thought i would do.
10. plan a major event.
11. go bungee jumping.
12. attend at least five concerts/festivals.
            planned thus far: trillectro DC - aug 2014 | music midtown atlanta - sept 2014
 
13. rent a houseboat.
14. live within six hours of a vineyard (about how far my car goes on a full tank).
15. perform on stage again.
16. downsize enough to fit all of my belongings in my car.
17. work in a bookstore/library.
18. learn how to cornrow.
 
19. be completely consumer debt-free.
20. learn how to record and create amazing HD videos for capturing special moments.
21. attend the graduations of all of my former Houstonian students.
22. finish and publish my book.
23. go to a naked spa or a nude beach.
24. learn how to double dutch.
 
25. master 10 hatha asanas.
26. go scuba diving and/or snorkeling. 
27. become a resident tourist: go on 41 outings in whatever city in which i happen to reside (one per month beginning august 2014)
28. ride in a hot air balloon.
29. completely throw out my scale.
30. get a tattoo/nose piercing.


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7.18.2014

fitness friday #20 | confessions of a chronic dieting psycho





fitness friday was born when like-minded bloggers desired a place to discuss hair and health goals and to remain accountable to themselves and each other for reaching those goals. 
tune into this and your hosts' blogs every friday to be inspired and to inspire.

fitness friday has been really great at holding me accountable to health, and keeping me pretty much off of the crazy train of perpetual yo-yo dieting. unfortunately, i'm pretty sure it hasn't made me any saner.



i have been "on a diet" since i was 5 years old. virtually none of them have worked in the past 21 years, but i always have to consciously stop myself from dialing the number in the infomercial.


i don't hate many things more than i hate running, yet i keep signing up for races/runs in the hopes that one day i can become a runner...

...except my legs are braced with laziness. and defeat.

if i wasn't trying to be healthy, i can't say with 100% assurance that i would not consume absolutely every granule of sugar in the world...

... all in one sitting.

please tell me i'm not alone...
any health/fitness confessions?

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fitness friday linkup rules
  1. follow your hosts: SavingOurStrandsLonging4Length, and One&20 via Bloglovin'.
  2. fitness is the theme. entries completely unrelated to the theme or linked to your homepage will be deleted.
  3. inspire the Fitness Friday contributor that linked up directly before you with an encouraging comment. we are each here to support each other and build a community of determined women and hair-friends.
  4. share it! your blog post must link back to this site so that others can become involved. this nifty button below links back to the Fitness Friday page! just copy and drop the code below into your blog post.
One&20




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+

7.16.2014

guest post | go green even while glamping by sara upton

as a nature-lover, camping is one of my favorite activities! i haven't yet gone glamping, as i'm used to the roughin' it style, but i think it's a pretty cool way to transition from indoors to out a little more comfortably than traditional camping.
i have journalist sara upton on the blog today discussing how to glamp in a responsible and sustainable way. 

source

Go Green Even While Glamping
by Sara Upton

One of the most rewarding experiences for any outdoor lover is a camping trip. There's nothing like roughing it for a few days to make one realize just how glorious the outdoor life can really be. Whether for exercise purposes or just pure love of the rugged life, taking your vacation to next level is as easy as pitching a tent and living off the land for a few days at your favorite outdoor location.

For most, it's important to keep the camping environment in its original state once you've left and going green (per MNN's list) is the way to describe this thought process. Going green doesn't necessarily mean going without your favorite tech, and that's where the term glamping comes into play.

Today, many people don't simply go camping, they go "glamping." This is a term that's defined as "adding modern amenities to a camping experience or creating a fully equipped, five-star worthy campsite," as noted by Verizon Wireless in this post on the topic. Maybe you've been glamping all along and never knew it!

Among the most efficient ways to keep your tech up and running during an extended outdoor stay is to charge your accessories with solar power, be it a phone or tablet. Solar power's uses go much farther than powering your phone on long trips with no outlets, so much so that major companies (like Apple!) are even researching the topic for future product lines, according to CNET.

Other ways to keep your glamping trip green include staying on the beaten path to keep your impact on the surrounding environment minimal. Picking a spot to pitch your tent and build your fire is equally important, whether you're able to stick to a trail or not. Choosing places that are on gravel or harder surfaces will seriously lessen your impact on the environment and will keep your fire away from small plants and flora that may facilitate widespread growth when left unchecked. Because let's face it: if you're glamping, you're probably not always watching the fire.

Another word on fires: keeping them safe involves more work than you may think. Always be sure that your fire is contained in a fire pit and not surrounded by small plants, especially dead ones in certain seasons. When building it up, be sure not to burn too many materials and do your best to avoid burning hazardous materials that emit harmful chemicals including CFCs. Putting out a fire at least 45 minutes in advance of going to bed or leaving the campsite is the best practice to ensure the fire is actually out and stays out.

You should even consider your cookware as part of your glamping trip. You won't be throwing away your good dishes, so bring along reusable dishes and silverware to ensure that no one acts upon the urge to toss plastic or styrofoam dishes away in the wild. Also, bring along plastic bags to store items that you may dispose of, like plastic food wrappers and, yes, even used toilet paper. The "leave no trace" saying literally includes all of the above!

Even while taking your serious tech out into the wild, you must remember to keep your trip as green as possible to ensure the outdoor enjoyment of everyone around you. Glamping is a fun way to spend your vacation, no matter where you end up. And taking the proper steps to ensure that you glam up your camping trip with top-of-the-line outdoor accommodations safely and in an eco-friendly way will ensure that your trip is as rewarding as it can possibly be. Happy glamping!



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7.15.2014

summer lovin' #5 | uncork'd dc

the past few days have been an utter whirlwind of activity from a day spent with my mom to helping my father pick out some new home improvement projects.
so far, this summer has been all about family and friends (or 'framily?'), and i have truly been loving spending time with those i hold near and dear.
last week, three of my friends and i went on a spontaneous trip to uncork'd art in adams morgan in dc, and i discovered that i'm pretty much picasso after two glasses of cab.
not really, but considering how potent the cab was, i'm surprised i was able to sit upright as long as i did on those stools AND without knocking over my easel (#win)! i actually expected my painting to look like pure crap, but i was mildly impressed at being able to recreate the model.
i never realized how therapeutic painting is when you let go of trying to be perfect, and i definitely plan to do it a lot more often. my favorite part of the painting is the tree and bush. luckily for me, there are PLENTY of trees and bushes in blacksburg for inspiration!
how are you loving summer so far?
any newfound talents?
One&20
the summer lovin' series rules:
every tuesday at 9am central from june 10 to august 26 
write a blog post or share a link to a tweet/twitpic of a happy summer moment you've captured - this can be anything!
grab a button  or link back if you're blogging | mention @oneand20 and #summerlovin on twitter.
show me some summer lovin' by following on bloglovin' 
relish in all of the beautiful summer moments shared by fellow linkers!



linking up with the dwelling tree and a harvest of blessing


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7.11.2014

fitness friday #19 | why i gave up low carbing (+ the african heritage diet)





fitness friday was born when like-minded bloggers desired a place to discuss hair and health goals and to remain accountable to themselves and each other for reaching those goals. 
tune into this and your hosts' blogs every friday to be inspired and to inspire.

ebony is clearly the trendsetter around here. just like i followed her juice detox with a green smoothie one, she posted about going vegan for 30 days, and i immediately wondered what kinds of dietary changes i could make in that same time frame.

but before i get into that, i mentioned last week how i gave up my ketogenic diet plan.
i got amazing results very quickly and without exercise. the diet was easy to follow, and i loved being completely water retention-free for the first time in my life.
so why give it up?
because i was tired of putting crap in my body.

i was eating virtually zero carbs most days and missing out on valuable nutrition that i had to supplement through pills. and then came the onslaught of "sugar-free" chemical-laden junk i was eating to bring some sort "variety" into my life.
don't get me wrong - meat, fat, and i are very good friends. for the most part, i did okay, but the times i had a serious carb craving were completely detrimental.

i still think a ketogenic diet is effective, but the sacrifices made for quick weight loss just weren't cutting it for me anymore. i want to be proud of the things i put in my body - hell, i want to be able to pronounce them all. and i will never forget how quickly my life changed when i went primal. i didn't drop a bunch of weight right away (which is why i quit before i gave it a chance) but even in that first week, my memory was on point, my head was completely clear, my allergy breakouts were gone, and my body just felt good.

so, i abandoned my desire for rapid weight loss for a slower, steadier weight loss while feeling completely fantastic the entire time. no "low carb  flu," no rumbly stomach and unfortunate bathroom sessions after too much sugar alcohol in frankenfood.

i've been loosely following a more natural approach to eating, but have decided to commit to my own 30-day challenge to become a bit stricter.
instead of following the traditional primal blueprint, i've begun following the blueprint of the traditional african heritage diet which has a heavy emphasis on greens, starches, fish, and other produce. i believe this is a surefire method for finally finding my forever way of eating.



it does include some things that the primal diet does not permit, but my wheat allergy eliminates many of them and i don't tend to overeat other primal no-nos like rice and beans anyway. moreover, with over half of my plate containing greens, there's really not enough space in my stomach to load up on them. i will listen to my body and use my best judgment - i want to keep things as clean and simple as i possibly can. 

i will also be going dairy-free - the breakouts and gas i've been experiencing can no longer be ignored after last night's horrible run-in with milk. this will be hard for me (i could write a whole post about my love for cheese, but that seems counterproductive).

so, for the next 30 days, i am focusing on getting back to my roots through the diet, training for my first 5K, and completing strength training workouts. consequently, i am shifting away from some of my hair and body goals (the mini twists are here to stay, though!). though i know i could definitely use a crash course in consistency, i think it's more important that i make LESS goals upon which i can focus MORE - especially since i am making such a drastic change from no carbs to a good amount of carbs and from being pretty much inactive to very active. i know that both my hair and body will automatically benefit just from a better diet and an increase in activity - anything else i do will be the icing.

any summer fitness resolutions?

////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

fitness friday linkup rules
  1. follow your hosts: SavingOurStrandsLonging4Length, and One&20 via Bloglovin'.
  2. fitness is the theme. entries completely unrelated to the theme or linked to your homepage will be deleted.
  3. inspire the Fitness Friday contributor that linked up directly before you with an encouraging comment. we are each here to support each other and build a community of determined women and hair-friends.
  4. share it! your blog post must link back to this site so that others can become involved. this nifty button below links back to the Fitness Friday page! just copy and drop the code below into your blog post.
One&20


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+