Thursday, June 27, 2013

My Diet & Fitness Program: 30 & Fit!

I apologize for the length of this's going to be a long one:

Last month I decided I wanted to be in the best shape of my life. I've decided this many many many.....oh so many times before, but this time I finally stuck to it.

I'm 30, and the mother of twins and a little girl. Obviously motherhood brings some major changes to your body, especially when you carry 7.3lb and 6.15lb twins to term! (Oh how miserable I was!)

The first time I decided I was going to change my eating and fitness habits was last year (2012) when I tried out the Dukan Diet.

I started out at 135 (I'm 5'5 and a half), and I ended up at 128. I didn't do any exercising at all the first time I did the diet. The second time around (my weight had gone back up to 130), I added in 20-30 minutes on my elliptical every day and quickly went from 130 to 118. I was pretty excited about that!

The winter came and went with bad eating and no exercise, and on June 4th 2013, I stepped on the scale and it read 125. I decided I wanted to get in shape and hit a goal weight of 115 (Still healthy for my height and frame). I also decided that the number on the scale didn't matter as much as the inches lost and the changes I wanted to see in the mirror. This is how I went from 125 to 115, healthy and fit, and still working towards my goals:

I crave sugar and carbs like no one's business, and my blood sugar also dips way low throughout the day. I'm one of those types of people who need to eat or they get physically sick (angry, lightheaded, nauseous and dizzy). I can always tell when my blood sugar drops. Because of this, I wanted to find something that would help level out my blood sugar, be safe to take, natural and would give me energy without the jitters.

After searching high and low, looking at shakes and supplements (most containing soy, artificial sweeteners and other ingredients I personally wanted to stay away from), I found Plexus Slim. I was contacted by Plexus Slim Ambassador Holly Boze (such a sweet and helpful fellow mommy) and she sent me the Plexus Slim/Accelerator Combo.
Plexus Slim is the all-natural way to lose weight and inches by burning fat, not muscle. Plexus Slim also helps keep blood sugar, cholesterol and lipids at healthy levels. In addition, Slim helps reduce binge eating and increases your willpower over food. 
You pour it into a bottle of water, shake it up and drink it 30 minutes before a meal. I did this first thing in the morning before I ate breakfast. I then took one Accelerator pill after I ate breakfast.
The taste reminds me of Crystal Light and I really enjoy my "pink drink" in the am and late afternoons.
Here are the features and benefits of Plexus Slim drink mix:
  • Safe and effective weight control
  • Helps regulate blood sugars
  • Helps maintain healthy blood pressure
  • Promotes beneficial cholesterol and lipid levels
  • Proven ingredients—including Alpha Lipoic Acid, Chlorogenic Acid, Garcinia Cambogia—that address all areas of weight loss
  • No caffeine
  • No stimulants
  • No meal replacements
  • No shakes
  • Fast and easy
  • Saves you time
  • A simple solution combined with water to help you succeed
Here are the features and benefits of the Accelerator pill:
  • Boosts weight loss safely and effectively
  • Proven ingredients—dark chocolate, green tea, and natural caffeine—to boost metabolism, suppress appetite and accelerate weight loss
  • Increases energy
  • Suppresses appetite
  • Speeds up weight loss in fat and inches
  • Synergistic benefits help increase the effectiveness of Plexus Slim
  • Convenient and easy to use
  • Great 3-day and 7-day packs to sample the products 
I no longer have to rely on my morning coffee to function anymore. It also contains Calcium, Magnesium and Vitamin B6 which I love!

I'm usually pretty skeptical when it comes to weight loss products, but I can say with 100% confidence that Plexus Slim works! I combined using Plexus Slim/Accelerator Combo with a low carb diet, 20-30 minutes on the elliptical at least 3 days a week and I also do an arm and leg workout that I'll talk about below.

 Here is a photo of my calendar for day to day weights while using Plexus Slim
Click on photo to enlarge
As you can see I started out at 125 lbs and very quickly shed the pounds as the days came and went.
I meant to take a photo of all my weights but only took a few. Just so you believe that I did lose the weight, here are a few photos of my scale and my scale at my parents house when I went to PA at the end of the month:
So I apologize about the photo qualities and also my need for a pedicure, but you get the picture. ;)
I dropped from 125 to 115 in less than 3 weeks time! I haven't been 115 since I was in high school!

Thanks to Plexus Slim I no longer have those carb cravings, I feel satisfied with smaller portions, I'm not hungry all the time, have lots of energy, and those low blood sugar dips are a thing of the past. 

I've been asked to sell many many products that I review for my blog, but this is the first time I actually contacted Holly and said "SIGN ME UP!!!" That's how much I believe in this product.

For my arm workout I've been doing Tracey Campoli's Perfect Arms Workout:

 I do this workout every other day, and in 3 weeks I was able to see a big change in my arms. This is a killer arm workout that you can do in the comfort of your own home and you're sure to see results!

For my legs I've been doing Brazil Butt Lift High & Tight.

This has helped sculpt my thighs, especially my inner thighs, which is an area I really wanted to work on.

 I do on days that I don't do arms (every other day).

So that's how I went from 125lbs to 115lbs in less than 3 weeks time.

Now I know no short term program will last forever, so I have made the decision to make this routine my new lifestyle. A low carb, high protein diet is easy for me to follow (thanks to the help from Plexus Slim), the workouts (arms, legs and 20-30 minutes on my elliptical) are convenient for my busy life and I'm enjoying being 30 and fit.

I don't concentrate on my abs much due to my umbilical hernia that I had repaired last year, but I haven't needed to since my other workouts all engage my core. I've lost the inches there as well.

Also, remember to drink lots of water!

If you have any questions for me at all, please feel free to comment below or message me on Facebook any time. I'm happy to help. 

Disclaimer: I'm not a doctor, nutritionist or personal trainer, so please consult your doctor before starting any diet/exercise program. What works for me might not work exactly the same for you (although I certainly hope it does). I've given my honest opinions above and hope if anything this will inspire you to make a goal to be in the best shape of your life.  

UPDATE 5/1/2014
 It's been 10 months since I last updated about my routine so I wanted to tell you all now what I'm doing:

  • I am still using the Plexus Slim pink drink, and I now take 2 of the X Factor multivitamins with my Plexus Slim (I use 8-10oz of water) first thing in the mornings.

  • I eat a low carb breakfast (usually egg whites and vegetables of some sort) and I have my coffee with all natural Stevia as my sweetener.

  • For lunch I usually eat a salad with turkey and hard boiled eggs mixed in the tomatoes and cheese and low carb dressing. Sometimes I have eggs of some kind, sometimes fish. 

  • Mid afternoon snack is usually a rice cake with a cocoa nut spread on top. So good!

  • Then at nap time, after I've started Grace on her homeschool work, I hop on my elliptical on a fat burning program for 30 minutes. Don't go for speed, but for harder resistance (burns more fat).

  • After my workout I mix a chocolate Plexus 96 protein shake with 8 oz. of unsweetened almond milk and drink that. It's soooo good and has 15 grams of protein in it and only 2 carbs (sweetened with Stevia).
  • Dinner is also low carb/high protein, usually chicken or meat of some sort with veggies. There are so many low carb/high protein recipes online. 
  • Monday, Wednesday and Friday I do the following arm workout with 2-3 lb. free weights. Don't use 5 lb's too much.
  • Monday and Friday I do Tracey Campoli's Perfect Arms Workout (it's also posted above, but I'll post it below again) 

  • On Wednesday I do this workout called Ten Minutes To Tone, using my 5 lb weights and my 2-3 lb weights:

  • Tuesday and Thursdays I do butt/leg exercises and I have really liked this video (excuse her "mildly pornographic" thumbnail, I promise she doesn't even wear that in the video lol)

  • After my night workouts, I immediately eat 1-2 hard boiled egg whites for the protein. Eat it right away.
  • For a late night snack, sometimes I eat another rice cake with nut butter on it, or I eat green pepper sticks with ranch dressing, or maybe a cheese stick, or salad, or hard boiled egg white or anything I can find that's low carb :)
  • I then take 2 Probio5 probiotics before bed.

  • Sundays are usually cheat days for me and I usually eat what I want within reason...just don't go overboard. That's pretty much it. I don't do anything for my abs since I have Diastasis Recti and am unable to perform conventional exercises. I have done this Post Natal Rehab (for Diastasis Rectus) a few times and like these ab exercises.

  • I've found I've gained the abdominal definition from my elliptical and also from holding my core tight while performing my arm and leg exercises. 

There you have it. If I've missed anything or you have any other questions, please feel free to comment below or message me on Facebook

Just remember ladies....YOU CAN DO THIS! It's doesn't take much time and with a little bit of effort, you can be in the best shape of your life!

Disclaimer: I'm not a doctor, nutritionist or personal trainer, so please consult your doctor before starting any diet/exercise program. What works for me might not work exactly the same for you (although I certainly hope it does). I've given my honest opinions above and hope if anything this will inspire you to make a goal to be in the best shape of your life. 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Moon & Stars Fire Pit Giveaway! lets you buy the gift your loved ones really want.
Anyone can create a FREE registry for any occasion and you will know exactly what to get them!

Life Songs Of A Busy Mom is so excited to co-host this giveaway! What's better on a cool summer night than sitting around a fire with your family enjoying roasted marshmallows and s'mores?

How to be Eligible to Win
Create a registry with at least 3 gifts or add to an existing registry. {sign-up with one click using your Facebook info} ~ When you sign up please use the letters “MPM” in the “Referred By” box.

One lucky winner will receive the Landmann Big Sky Steel Fire Pit *!!

Organized by: Mom Powered Media
Giveaway ends July 4th at 11:59pm, open to US residents, ages 18+. To enter please use the Rafflecopter form below. Good luck!
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*Sponsor may substitute similar item if exact style is not available
Disclosure: To be eligible to win this giveaway you must create an account and add at least three items in your registry. If you already have a MyPerfectGift registry just add a gift to your existing registry to be eligible for this giveaway. I received no compensation for this publication. My opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own. Life Songs Of A Busy Mom is not responsible for sponsor prize shipment. This event was organized by MomPoweredMedia please contact with questions or to see your business or blog featured on the next big event!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Pennymeade Classic Children's Clothing Review & Giveaway

Pennymeade offers classic children's clothing for the practical parent.  Modeled after the classic English style, the clothing is beautifully made, comfortable, and just plain adorable!

Designer Monica Noone has always taken pleasure and pride in dressing her young children in classic, coordinating childrenswear. But with four little ones, the joy of putting together the perfect ensemble quickly became an expensive endeavor. Tiring of paying hundreds of dollars for even casual collections, Monica launched Pennymeade with the goal of providing families like hers with the high-quality, classic clothes she loves, at a price point even a mom of four could appreciate. The Pennymeade brand is designed to be comfortable and practical, yet still timeless and treasured, with quality that ensures today’s favorites will become a handed down delight for the next child.

I was able to review two pieces from Pennymeade's Silhouette Collection and I have to say the quality blew me away. You would expect to pay a lot more for this type of clothing if purchased anywhere else. The fabric designs are clean and crisp, yet the fabric is soft and very comfortable.

My twin boys are wearing the Silhouette Button Down in a 100% cotton, summer sage design. These outfits are perfect for church or any outing where you want a dressy-casual look. I also love how you can coordinate the looks between girls and boys.

My daughter is wearing the Silhouette 'Lillian' Dress with matching baby doll dress. This apron-styled dress offers a 100% cotton, pink and green floral design and will be a favorite all summer. 

Elasticized back and two button positions on the straps will keep this dress fitting well throughout the year. The dress is also fully lined.

The cuteness is too much for words! 

I received so many compliments when I took the kids to church in their Pennymeade outfits. You just can't help but love this clothing line!

Pennymeade also offers monogramming for a small fee to further personalize your children's clothing, making them treasured keepsakes. 

Both pieces are offered in sizes 12 months through 8 years.
Pennymeade is also offering a monogrammed 'Lillian' Dress from their Bulldog collection to one lucky reader (a $48 value)! 
Giveaway is open to US residents, ages 18 and over. 
Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter.
Good Luck! :) 

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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Summer Fun Giveaway Event!

Summer Fun Giveaway Event

Organized by: Mom to Bed by 8

Life Songs Of A Busy Mom is so super excited to co-host this fabulous summer fun giveaway!
5 lucky winners will each win one of the above prizes to help kick off their summer fun.
So take a gander at the wonderful prizes being offered:
Prize Package Includes:
Skywalker Bounce-N-Learn Trampoline
Your little ones will love to get their bounce on in the Skywalker Trampolines 5-ft. Seaside Adventure Bouncer, which features a fun ocean theme and excellent bouncing capability. This fun bouncer offers a steel frame construction, woven jump mat with numbers, dual zipper enclosure. It's recommended for children 6-8 years of age and has a weight capacity of up to 100-pounds. Kids will love to jump and play as the secure elastic stretch bands provide bouncing fun.
Intex 10' x 30" Metal Frame Swimming Pool
Easy to set up, this Intex 10' x 30" Metal Frame Pool is supported by strong, durable steel frames, which are powder coated for rust resistance and beauty. Triple strong, super-tough laminated sidewalls of the Intex Metal Frame Swimming Pool are reinforced with an all-around band to keep frame legs firmly in place. For clean, refreshing water, connect the new economical and environmentally friendly Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter Pump. The Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter is an added safety feature that shuts off the pump if electrical current is exposed to water.
Glenmeadow 6-Piece Folding Patio Dining Set with Umbrella
The Glenmeadow 6-Piece Patio Dining Set comes with four chairs that fold flat for storage, a glass-top table and an umbrella that is easy to open and close. This patio dining set with umbrella is covered in 100-percent outdoor furniture sling fabric that is UV-rated fade-resistant and constructed of durable, powder-coated steel. Each chair of this patio dining set with umbrella holds up to 200 lbs and comes with a safety lock feature. The table is tempered glass and scratch resistant. Your folding dining set cleans easily with soap and water.
Flexible Flyer Swing Free Metal Swing Set
The Flexible Flyer Swing Free Metal Swing Set will provide backyard fun all summer long. This swing set allows your kids to play and get some exercise at the same time. It comes with four different activities that can keep up to six kids busy and active. The sturdy, steel frame of this backyard swing set is built to last and can have parents feeling confident that their kids are safe. The swings, trapeze swing, air glider and slide provide plenty of opportunities for outdoor fun.
20" Huffy Rock It Boys' Bike
The Huffy Rock It 20" Boys' Bike has just what he needs to have a great adventure. It has a quick adjustable seat post for your growing teen and the padded seat is fully decorated with the logo on it. The heavy duty steel black frame makes it sturdy, durable, and stylish. A single speed bicycle in black and blazing orange, it is fully equipped with coaster brakes for instant control while racing at high speeds. The attractive orange blast handlebars and rich black pedals with orange blast 28-spoke rims add to its trendy look. This steel frame bicycle is easy to assemble and includes the instruction manual. Thank you to each reader who is taking the time to visit, read and entering to win this amazing summer fun prize package. Please take a moment to also visit our lovely co-hosts whom without them great things such as these would not be possible: 365 Things to Do In Southwest Florida, Celebrate Woman Today, My Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Life, Coupons In Motion, The Stuff of Success, Budget Earth and Baby Costcutters.

Five lucky people will win! Each receiving one of the following: Skywalker Bounce-N-Learn Trampoline, Intex 10' x 30" Metal Frame Swimming Pool, Glenmeadow 6-Piece Folding Patio Dining Set with Umbrella, Flexible Flyer Swing Free Metal Swing Set & 20" Huffy Rock It Boys' Bike!

Giveaway ends June 24th at 11:59pm, open to US residents, ages 18+. To enter please use the Rafflecopter form below. Good luck.
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Disclosure: I received no compensation for this publication. My opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own. Life Songs Of A Busy Mom is not responsible for sponsor prize shipment. Please contact with questions or to see your business or blog featured on the next big event!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Best Home Furnishings Recliner Review - Made in the USA

Best Home Furnishings started back in 1962 with just 2 men. Now, over 50 years later, this family-owned and operated facility is quickly growing to become one of the largest furniture manufacturers in the world!

They offer chairs, recliners, glider rockers, sofas and more, and are proud to have their furniture made right here in the USA.

About a month or so ago, I was given the opportunity to review The Beast recliner in Roscoe.
Best Home Furnishings offers many different shapes, colors and sizes of recliners, and I picked The Beast since my husband is 6'6 and has a hard time comfortably fitting into any piece of furniture as it is.

The Beast takes oversized recliners to new lengths. The extra-large, hand-assembled hardwood frame reclines to a full 83" and is tested to withstand more than 400 pounds of everyday use (per their website).
As you can see from this photo above, my 6'6 husband has no problem getting comfortable in this recliner! In fact, I hardly ever get the chance to sit in it because he won't sit anywhere else!
It's also my children's favorite place to sit. 
So if you're looking for the perfect Father's Day gift (and what man doesn't love a recliner?), visit your local furniture store who carries Best Home Furnishings or click here to find a retailer near you.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Mary Helen Clothing Review & Giveaway!

Mary Helen Clothing truly captures a child's playful spirit. Whimsical styles feature bright colors, unique patterns, accented with lots of ruffles and bows!

Mary Helen believes that her clothing "will lead girls into a life of high self-worth and beauty through fun loving, age appropriate clothing that makes them feel beautiful, confident and proud."

 The clothing is not only soft and comortable; it's absolutely beautiful! It's also handmade right here in the USA!

Photo courtesy Mary Helen Cothing

Mary Helen Clothing features dresses, tops, bottoms, jackets, outerwear, accessories, and she even has a womens and boys line.

I was able to review her Kinley dress and my daghter and I absolutely fell in love with it!

"Sassy and flouncy, kinley has a ruffled tiered skirt with a lively purple peacock print and a purple leopard print. her top is a comfy purple jersey with ruffled sleeves and a matching belt. this dress is sure to make your girl stand out from the crowd"

So girly and fun, I just love this dress!

Mary Helen is also giving my readers a chance to WIN a $50 Gift Card! I'm so excited for whoever wins, and I know the winner is going to be so happy with anything they pick from the site.

Giveaway is open to US residents, ages 18 and over.
Please let the Rafflecopter widget fully load below:

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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Rylee Faith Designs Mommy-n-Me Necklace Review & Giveaway!

Rylee Faith Designs makes adorable, handcrafted, chunky beaded necklaces and bracelets.
You can choose from a wide variety of styles or send them a message with your very own custom order. 
I was able to review their Mommy-n-Me necklace set in mint and white (so hot right now), and the necklaces are just too cute for words!
 The matching Mommy-n-Me necklaces come in the adult size (approximately 19"), and the child size (approximately 16"), with both sizes having a 2-3 inch extender.
Glam up those cute little outfits with matching Rylee Faith Designs accessories!

So make sure to stop by Rylee Faith Designs Facebook page for more info and to order!
Want to WIN your very own Mommy-n-Me Mint Necklace Set?
Enter below!
(Open to US residents, ages 18 and over)

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