Tuesday, February 28, 2017

NEDAwareness Week

Well, here I am, attempting to blog. What better way to kick off an almost two year hiatus than during National Eating Disorder Awareness Week. The goal of #NEDAwareness Week is to shine the spotlight on eating disorders and put life-saving resources into the hand of those in need. This year's theme is It's Time to Talk About It and that's exactly what my intentions are with today's important blog post. For those that have never suffered from an eating disorder, you probably wonder why someone would subject themselves to limited calorie intake, over eating or even purging, but the reality is, eating disorders are controlling, just like alcoholism, drug abuse or smoking. The difference with an eating disorder, is you are not able to just quit eating. You cannot go to rehab, change your environment or group of friends and hope you never come in contact with food again. Everyone must eat, and in order to fully recover, you must learn to live a life WITH your trigger still a main focus. Imagine telling an alcoholic that they don't need to stop drinking, just adjust to a healthier relationship with alcohol! No! You wouldn't do that, so you can see why having an eating disorder is a total mental mind fuck. My eating disorder started in 2002. I was adjusting to a single life after a break-up and working as a manager for Bank of America. I worked long days. Matter of fact, I preferred to work as many hours as I possibly could. I would start my day with coffee, and typically grab a second coffee during lunch hours. After work I would grab drinks with friends and eventually get fast food at late hours. I was sleeping only 5ish hours a night. This went on for months. My weight started to drop, and other people started to notice how my work slacks were becoming baggy. I didn't see it as a problem and would just buy smaller pants. I went from a 10 to an 8 and then a 6. By the time I was wearing a 4 and eventually a 2, my mom started asking if I was okay. She accused me of purging after meals, but the reality was, I just wasn't eating enough. She pointed out that someone who was 5'10" probably should weigh more than 130lbs. Still, I didn't see it. I was actually angry that she would accuse me of throwing my food up. Then on 4th of July in 2003, I went to a party with friends. It was a potluck and I couldn't stop eating all the delicious foods my friends had made. I remember how sick I felt on the car ride home, and as soon as they dropped me off, I tossed my cookies. The next day I couldn't eat at all. This was around the same time I had become friends with my (now) husband. He noticed I hadn't eaten the day before, so he bought me a huge lunch. I was hungry, so I scarfed everything down. You can imagine how sick I felt, and somehow I remember the relief I had gotten the day before, so that is when my vicious cycle began. One day I would barely eat, and the next I would over eat (binge). This went on for years. Often unnoticed by others. Matter of fact, I had put some weight on my thin frame, and my mom stopped accusing me of throwing up. My disorder was controlling me, but it was also something that no one could control for me. No one really knew, and if they did, how could they stop me? My binging and purging took a back seat for sometime during both pregnancies. It was during this time that I felt comfortable talking about it for the first time with my family. I think since I had some recovery under my belt I could get it off my chest. Of course this just made for more concern and speculation, especially from my mom. Finally in September 2016, I finally hit rock bottom with my disorder. I was throwing up 2-5 times a day, and stopping at the grocery store to buy pints of ice cream to devour in hiding. I woke up on September 22nd, my husband's birthday, and couldn't hold it together. I was weak and worn out. I couldn't get through my work-out and didn't want to ruin my husband's day with my roller coaster of emotions. I called my mom and confessed how bad it had been for months. I don't know exactly what has kept me in recovery mode since that day, but I have over five months clean and continue to fight for my health every single day. There are days that are easier than others, but every day I eat and almost every day I have to think about what kind of relationship I want to have with food. It is difficult and there have definitely been days that I still stand in the pantry and eat several cookies in one sitting, but I remind myself of how I felt that morning in September and know I don't want to be there again, so I will do whatever i takes to not go back there. I am a huge advocate for loving yourself and body positivity, but the truth is, even I have days that I don't like my body. I try to love everything about it, but I refuse to let these minor setbacks trigger other issues. I know I will suffer from this demon for the rest of my life, but I also know I am a fighter. I will not give up, and hopefully I can help someone else with my story. If you, or someone you know, suffers form an eating disorder, call the national helpline at 1 (800) 931-2237 or visit www.nedawareness.org xo Shan

Monday, February 27, 2017

I'm bacccccck! 👋🏽

Hi! Are you still with me? If you are, bravo! I have starting working on a new project and figured it would be a great time to revamp my blog and get it up to date. I will be putting pen to paper and releasing all of my recent ideas, recipes and workouts soon!!! Stay tuned! Xo Shan

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Peanut Free Protein Balls

What do you do when you find a box of stale cereal? Usually I would throw it away, but being that I was hungry and in a creative mood, I decided to make protein bars. Halfway through mixing ingredients, I realized the consistency was perfect for no bake protein power balls instead, so that is exactly what we ended up with! 

Here are the simple ingredients;
4 servings Special K protein flakes, ground in the Vitamix. 
2 tbsp Chia Seeds
40 grams Dayes, pitted
3tbsp WowButter peanut free soy butter
1/4c Walden Farms Pancake Syrup

I started by mixing the Special K cereal in the Vitamix. 
Then added my chia seeds

I emptied the contents in my KitchenAid and then put my dates with a few tablespoons of water and the walden farms syrup in the Vitamix and blended until almost smooth. I added the WowButter and blended again, then added that to the dry mix in the KitchenAid. I mixed all the ingredients until well incorporated. The mixture was exactly 300 grams, so I rolled them into 10 equal 30gram balls. Before placing them in my fridge, I ate one to make sure it was safe. It was! Crunchy from the Gia seeds, so if you don't like the crunch, you can wet your chia first for a few minutes, use only 1tbsp or omit them all together. 

Hope you enjoy! 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Chick Pea Blondies

Once upon a time I was sitting standing in my kitchen when my ravenous sweet craving came rearing it's ugly head. I walked to the pantry and eyed the peanut butter. Just last week I had an inappropriate relationship with said peanut butter jar (who shall remain nameless for now), so I knew that taking even a "tablespoon" of this magical mixture would become problematic for a girl who has been diligent about counting her macros, so, I started dreaming of healthy brownies instead. I have made my black bean brownies in the past, and that sounded great, but I didn't have the same chocolate fudge protein powder I had previously used and didn't want to be disappointed by the taste. What could I make? Chick peas! Maybe healthy cookie dough? No, still tempted to eat the entire bowl. Hmmmm, how about a healthy blondie? Would my kids try it? Sprinkles. Yes, everyone loves sprinkles! 

So, the healthy, protein, chick pea, birthday blondie was born. So good. So yummy, and I could portion them. So smart! 

I used ingredients I had in the cabinet, but believe me, you can you a huge variety of items you already have to make these. Don't be stumped by the items I've used! ...and please, share your own recipes if you have good ones!!!

Here's mine. 

🔸1 can Chick Peas, drained and rinsed. 
🍁1/2c Walden Farms Pancake Syrup (can use honey, agave, or another sweetener of choice)
🍶1/4 tsp butter extract
🍨2tbsp vanilla protein powder 
🎉3tsp Sprinkles, plus additional 1tsp for topping. 
(Optional 🍁1/4tsp maple extract)

Preheat oven to 350°. Line 8x8 pan with parchment paper or butter sides and bottom. 

Purée chickpeas until smooth texture. Mix in all ingredients. Pour in to pan and sprinkle remaining 🎉1tsp sprinkles on top. Bake in oven for 20-25 minutes depending on the gooeyness of your choice! 

Let cool for about 30 minutes. Cut in to portions, 8 or 16. I did 16 but still ate two right away!!!! Hope you enjoy! 

Visit my InstaGram @LivingSemiCrunchy

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Egg Muffins

Always tweaking past recipes to make them better. I don't think these could be any better. Simple, easy and a great breakfast item to have on hand for busy morbings, camping or any other traveling. Hope you enjoy. 

🌱1 bunch green onions, chopped
🍎1 red bell pepper, diced
🍚1 cup grated cheese
🐷1/2c bacon pieces (optional)
🍳4 egg yolks
🍳8-10 egg whites. 

Preheat oven to 350°. In a separate bowl, mix egg yolks and whites. In a cupcake pan, layer green onions, bell pepper, cheese and bacon bits. Pour egg mixture over top of each "cupcake/muffin." Place in oven between 20-30 minutes depending on how crispy you want the outside. I did 30 minutes and they were delicious! 


Xo Shan 

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Let's get personal...

Since my last Instagram post, I have received a few emails regarding my personal story and I realized I've never written out the journey I've been on over the last decade. Perhaps i didn't think anyone would really have an interest, but mostly I haven't written it because it isn't easy to talk about. Today, I will break my silence and hopefully someone can relate to my struggles and find the light that I have. 

2003 started with a break up. I had too much time to get myself in trouble. I was devoting most my waking hours to my career, and as soon as I was out of the office, I was out partying as hard as I had been working.  I was hitting the bottle hard, and not taking care of my body.  At the time I didn't realize, but I was wasting away. Coffee for breakfast, often skipping lunch or barely eating a late lunch and drinking alcohol as my dinner. I was getting to bed late and scraping myself out of bed the following morning to do it all again. The gym was a joke back then. I was definitely not working out, although I continued to pay for my 24 Hour Fitness membership just so I could say I belonged to a gym. These behaviors lasted for several months. I lost weight rapidly, eventually people started asking me if I was okay. At 5'10" I was hovering around 130 pounds. No muscle, no butt, clothes falling off. My normal size 8 jeans went down to a 4, and I thought it was great. This anorexia lasted several months until one night changed me forever. It was 4th of July and my friends were throwing a party. There was a smorgasbord of appetizers and treats. I hadn't been around so much readily available food in quite a while. I ate. I ate, and I ate, and I ate. I ate so much, that I felt terrible sick. I remember the car ride home. The sick feeling I felt from over eating, and I was hoping I would make it home and not succumb to this car sick feeling I felt. As soon as I was dropped off I ran to the bathroom, and my relief was immediate. I didn't know then that the feeling I felt would become addictive. That feeling created a new pattern of destructive behaviors. A few days of low calories, mostly from coffee and alcohol, followed by a day of binging and purging. Within a few months the effects of my behaviors had taken a toll.  Debilitating migraines, tooth decay, hair loss and my skin was grey. I had insomnia and was frequently disoriented. 

During this time I met my husband. We worked together and he quickly saw I wasn't eating well. His family owned a deli and he would bring me sandwiches at lunch. He thought he could save me with food, but that would be like saving an alcoholic with beers. The thing about eating disorders as opposed to other addictions is you cannot eliminate or avoid it. Everyone must eat. Every day. Several times per day. 

Within a couple months of marriage, I found out we were expecting. I thought carrying my precious child would stop my purging, and it did mostly. I know there was at least once I could not stay strong enough and gave in to the relieving feeling of purging. As a mom, I definitely scaled back my problem, but food was still a necessity, and if I ever over ate, I knew there was a way out from that feeling. 

Over the following 6 years or so, I yo-yo'd my weight. Gaining during pregnancies, and continuing to gain more weight even after pregnancy, at one point weighing 170lbs. I was unhappy, unhealthy, tired, and just over all miserable. 

Then in the summer of 2013, I came across the "If It Fits Your Macros" diet. During the first three months of incorporating iifym, I gained a 6 pack (okay, maybe a 2-pack), and realized I NEVER once over ate, felt "too full," or purged. It was the first time I was able to eat, without restrictions, and not fear food or what would happen when I ate. I am not "cured" from this disorder. It is with me forever, but I can control it far better than I ever have. My skin is a normal color, my teeth are the healthiest they have ever been, my hair stopped falling out, and my migraines have not made an appearance in a couple years. My over all health is noticeably better than 10 years ago. 

I have feared talking about my eating disorder for years. I'm not even sure my closest friends are privy to this information. I was ashamed and knew better, but couldn't stop, but I feel like talking about it helps hold me accountable, and also may help someone else who struggles with similar issues. 

Eating disorders are serious, life-threatening illnesses that impact 8 million people each year in the United States. If you, or someone you know, suffers from an eating disorder, visit www.ANewJourney.net or call 1-844-348-6212

Xo Shan 

Friday, December 12, 2014

Healthy Cookie Dough

I took another stab at this healthy version of my favorite sweet treat! I love cookie dough, and can't seem to keep my fingers out of the batter while mixing, so it's such a treat to be able to devour this GUILT FREE! 

This recipe can easily be adjusted with ingredients you currently have at home. 


🍚1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
🍨1 scoop vanilla protein powder
🍯8 tbsp nut butter of your choice (I used Maranatha Maple Almond Butter)
🍁1/4 cup Walden Farms Pancake Syrup
(Can use honey, agave, or even maple extract)
🍞1/4 tsp butter extract (optional)
🍫14g Dark Chocolate Chips (I used Lily's sweetened with stevia)

Mix all ingredients (sans chips) together and add water if you desire a runnier texture. Fold in chocolate chips and enjoy. 

Xo Shan