My name is Amanda and my passion is to lead a healthy and active life while still enjoying all of life’s luxuries. Growing up I was a competitive athlete but stopped competing once I began college. After growing tired of the gym routine, I rediscovered my inner athlete in 2007. I signed up for an Olympic distance triathlon with Team in Training and my life was forever changed. Since then I have completed a 100-mile century bike ride, four half marathons and have no intention of stopping. To keep myself motivated, I constantly vary my routine and sign up for races. Having a goal in mind keeps me on track.
In addition to my love of fitness, I have an extreme passion for all things delicious. I love cooking, creating new, interesting and healthy dishes.
I am constantly trying to learn – whether it be reading articles, magazines, other blogs, or just observing and interpreting. And I am always sharing what I learn with family and friends. I hope this blog will help me continue to learn and grow, as well as share my ideas and views with the world.
I believe that leading a healthy, balanced, active life should be our nation’s top priority. I have found that everything in life is easier and more enjoyable when I am taking care of my health.
I am Italian and a love of food is part of who I am. While I try to eat healthfully as often as possible, I also like to enjoy life and all the food that goes along with it. My diet is centered around whole, unprocessed foods that are as close to nature as possible. I try to avoid packaged food, and if I don’t understand something on a label, it goes back on the shelf. Like most people, I do not have a money tree in my backyard (or a backyard for that matter), so it is my mission to show that healthy eating can be delicious, simple, and not cost an arm and a leg.
In January 2008, I began training for a century ride with Team in Training – a 100 mile bike ride around Lake Tahoe. As our training rides got longer and longer I began to look at food in a new way – as fuel. When cycling for 8 hours in the summer heat you quickly learn what your body needs to survive – carbs, protein, fat and water. I learned so much from my coaches, teammates, and researching and reading constantly. While my nutrition needs are not as scientific as they were during my training days, I still carry that philosophy with me.
I am not a vegetarian, vegan, raw foodist, or strict anything. I am a young woman trying to fuel my body with the best foods I can while still enjoying eating out, going on vacation, having dessert, and splurging from time to time.
Growing up I was always an athlete. In my youth, my friends and I would be shuttled from swim practice to soccer practice and then to volleyball practice. It was my parents’ goal to expose me to as many activities as possible so I could find what I was passionate about. I loved playing sports and being part of a team. In High School I focused on water polo and soccer, but had to stop playing soccer at 14 when I tore BOTH of my hip flexors in a game and could barely walk for 6 months, let alone run. Luckily I was still able to play water polo
When I went off to college in Colorado, I struggled to fit in fitness with everything else that college had to offer. Not having structured practice schedules, I had to figure it out on my own.
After 4 years off from running, I was able to pick it up again. I still remember my first run since the injury. It was the summer after my Freshman year of college and I ran from my parents’ house to my school and ran on the field where I collapsed over 4 years earlier. It was a great moment in my running life.
Today I am a runner again. I have completed 4 half marathons in less than a year and look forward to more races. I balance running with strength training using free weights, machines and body weight exercises, and cardio at the gym. I have been taking spinning classes for 12 years, and it is the one aerobic class I never get sick of.
My fitness philosophy centers around variety and balance. I mix things up to keep myself from getting bored, and to keep my body on its toes!
It is my goal, through this blog, to share with you what works for me, offer tips and tricks, and answer any questions that might help you in your food and fitness adventures.