The older I get, the more sensitive my skin has become. I have always had an obsession with clear (no freckles, brown spots or scars), healthy, wrinkle free skin (especially on my face), and have spent a lot of time and money investing in the prefect skin. I use to primarily use glycolic acid, rentinol and lactic acid on my face, but noticed as of late it was actually making things worse for me. I started breaking out because my skin was overly dry from using such harsh products. I spend a lot of time outdoors and needed to revamp my skin care routine and line quickly. For someone who is so obsessed with having the prefect skin, acne was soon becoming my biggest nightmare.
After countless of hours of research, I was looking for all natural products to simulate what my other products were originally doing. I created this face mask based on all the reading I have done, and have been my very own guinea pig for the past few months. I can personally tell you, this is the best face mask I have ever used.
I remember the first time I saw a group of women in the LUNA jerseys riding mountain bikes, I couldn’t have been older than 20, I had pulled over on the trail to let them pass and just stared in awe. They looked confident and skilled, and were very friendly. And I had thought it would be neat to be a part of their team. Sadly, I didn’t have much confidence or skill at that time and thought I would probably never be able to ride my mountain bike so well much less be part of a team. Fast forward a decade, with more solo and group rides than I can count, over a handful of clinics and private lessons, and lots of big smiles and fun adventures along the way – and I am officially a team member of the Bay Area LUNA Chix Mountain Bike Team.
The LUNA Chix program brings together women interested in learning new sports, staying active and inspiring others to do the same. They organize and lead women only group rides (for all levels), clinics and fundraise for the Breast Cancer Fund. This is truly something I am proud to be a part of – click here to learn more.
This has been a challenging year for me. I spent the winter of 2011 and the first quarter of 2012 training and riding almost 200+ miles a week on my mountain bike. 2012 was going to be the year I started racing competitively— I even signed up and paid for a couple of races in advance. Well, all of that was abruptly put on hold when we were rear ended and suffered severe whiplash during a 6 car pile up on Hwy 17. Several long months later, and I am just now starting to feel my mojo and getting back out there as much my body permits.
One of my favorite things to do now that I am feeling a bit better, is going on group rides. I get to ride bikes at whatever intensity level I am able to handle that day and socialize – sounds like a win-win to me. I especially love the rides put on by my local mountain bike club – the Bicycle Trails Council of the East Bay. Besides occasionally leading the Intermediate+ Ride Like a Girl ride, I also enjoy attending the monthly Gala Ride. It gives me an opportunity to ride areas I may not normally seek out myself. It is also a great networking opportunity and constantly introduces me to new people to ride bikes with.
Not only am I am part of the Bikeskills Norcal team working as the Marketing Coordinator – but I am also a student that has attended just about every monthly trail riding clinic. It’s a perk that I would be foolish to not take advantage of – especially after the car accident earlier this year.
I am thrilled with my progression – I finally feel like I control the bike, moving it constantly underneath me instead of just being on top of it. It’s neat to see pictures of yourself riding with proper form and to have friends commenting on how much you’ve improved – so much so – they have also signed up for a Bikeskills clinic.
Health wise, this has been a tough year for me. We were involved in a car accident that has left me with a lot of inflammation in my body which causes a considerable amount of pain. I’ve always been one to seek out holistic healing first instead of western medicine – which can often include harmful side effects.
I’ve know about the amazing benefits of turmeric for a number of years now (click here to read more) – and use this spice regularly in my daily cooking routine. After the car accident, I knew I needed to increase my daily intake of turmeric – a potent anti-inflammatory – to help relieve some of my pain.
It’s been a tough season for me; I’ve had several ups and downs with my fitness routine (primarily due to the lack of time), a couple of solid crashes and plenty of soreness. So why do I keep on pushing myself? I can’t imagine not doing so, I thrive on the pain.
Not only am I cyclist but I am an overall fitness junkie. I spend several days a week running, sessioning hundreds of stairs near my home, weight lifting in the gym and yoga at home. It’s taken me years to build a cycling fitness as well as an overall muscle base. It’s even harder for me because I am an Ectomorph, giving me quite a challenge to look like an athlete. While I’ve spent many years discouraged by the lack of a chiseled body, I’ve finally come to grips with it. I’ve revamped my thinking and enjoy giving my competitors the element of surprise. Hey, who knew this girl was actually fit?
It’s summer! For me, that means spending as much time outdoors as possible (soaking up the glorious vitamin D). I could give you several really great excuses as to why I am not blogging, but the reality is I am having fun.
Hope you are having as awesome of a summer as I am!
This week was an incredibly busy week. After experiencing mental and physical fatigue, I needed to take a step back. Usually in my world, taking a step back means spending a therapeutic amount of time cooking in the kitchen. I’ve never thought of cooking as a chore but more of an enjoyment. I love getting creative with local fresh produce and whipping up something that is healthy, colorful and most importantly, delicious.
Tonight’s dinner – gluten free ground turkey breast burgers, homemade sweet potato fries and a spring mix salad.
Easter was a wonderful day; the weather sunny and warm, and we were in the company of good friends and delicious food (all gluten free). My friend Danielle (who recently went through an extensive culinary program), cooked a Moroccan lamb dish over saffron quinoa. For desert, she baked a polenta, almond, lemon cake with lemon carmel icing. I contributed with a couple bottles of red wine and an organic spring mix salad with radishes, tomatoes, red onion, strawberries and balasmic dressing. Mielle and Chris made stuffed pears with goat cheese and candied walnuts. What a feast!
Danielle has a beautiful backyard that is prefect for a photo shoot. Lucky for me, Jason brought his camera along. I am obsessed with mixing patterns and especially stripes with florals. That is one of my favorite combinations and it happens to be one of the trends for this spring and summer.
My floral, draped, silk skirt is from Orion London and the striped top is from Tart. Since it wasn’t quite warm enough to go without stockings, I opted for a solid pair of black tights and my Jeffrey Campbell wedged booties. For an extra layer, I added a solid black knit blazer from 7forallmandkind. I didn’t want to look like a hot mess with too many patterns and colors so I purposely stuck with all black solids.
This week’s recipe is Italian chicken sausage cooked in a red bell pepper sauce with chopped broccoli, sliced bell peppers and brown rice, served with a side herb salad. Another healthy, tasty meal under 30 minutes.