Sick Day Tea Remedy

As luck would have it, just as I was getting comfortable with my daily routine of work, school, gym and sleep, I got sick. Everyone at work and school is currently sick, so I suppose getting sick was inevitable. Still, it’s a pain to have to reschedule meetings, deadlines and Skype calls because of a non-stop dry cough and the chills.

influenza-156098_960_720

Since the bug has been making its rounds, I’ve decided to share with you all a sick day tea recipe that a friend shared with me last November when I was sick last.

You will need:
3 cups of water
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 of a lemon, juiced
1/2 tbsp. of tumeric
1/4 tsp. of cloves
1 pinch of cayenne pepper
3 slices of fresh ginger
1 1/2 tsp. of honey

The directions:
Add all the ingredients except for the honey into a pot and bring the pot to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, turn the heat down to simmer and let it sit for 10 minutes. Strain the mixture into a tea pot, add the honey to the liquid mixture, and drink it while it’s still hot.

If you’re sick, don’t forget to stay home (everyone will thank you for doing so!), keep hydrated, wash your hands regularly, and get plenty of rest. I know it’s tough, especially at the start of the year to slow down and take time off of your commitments, but your body will thank you for it. If you have any other sick day remedies to share with me, feel free to leave them in the comments section down below or tweet me @pandamoniumpink.

Keep smiling,
Kels

How To Set Attainable Goals

Can you believe that we’re almost halfway through the first month of the new year? It’s crazy how fast time flies when we’re busy trying to get out of winter vacation mode and back to reality. I personally can’t wait until the month is over because that means that my gym will start to quiet down and I will no longer have to wait in line to use any of the machines!

During this morning’s training session I was talking to my trainer about my 2016 health and fitness goals. 2015 was my year of recovery and now I want to build on my progress and work on creating a physically and mentally stronger version of myself. I posted a YouTube video last week briefly outlining my personal and fitness goals, since I’ve been told that I’m more likely to achieve my goals if I share them with people who can keep me accountable, but I’m now reviewing and editing each one of them so that they’re S.M.A.R.T goals.

If you’ve worked with a team of colleagues, have taken business or leadership classes, or have read up on goal setting, you’ve most likely come across the S.M.A.R.T acronym. S.M.A.R.T is a goal setting process that stands for specific, measurable, relevant and time based. The more defined and planned the goal is, the higher the chance that it will be met.

SMART-goals

Here’s what you need to think about while setting a S.M.A.R.T goal:

S – SPECIFIC
Define the goal as much as possible and think about:
Who is involved?
What do you want to accomplish?
Where will it be done?
Why am you doing this?
Which constraints or restrictions do you have?

M – MEASURABLE
Can you track and measure the outcome?
How will you know when the goal is accomplished?

A – ATTAINABLE
Make sure that the goal is not out of reach or below your standard performance.
Is the goal reasonable enough to be accomplished?

R – RELEVANT
Is the goal worthwhile and will it meet your needs?
Is your goal consistent with the other goals that you have made and will it fit in with your short or long term plans?

T- TIME BASED
Setting a time limit establishes a sense of urgency.
Think about the day/month/year that you want to complete your goal.

I hope this helps anyone who is setting 2016 goals and resolutions. Feel free to share your goals and resolutions with me in the comment section down below or on Twitter @pandamoniumpink. If you want to follow my health and fitness journey and keep me accountable, check out my health and fitness Instagram account @pandamoniumpinkfit.

Keep smiling,
Kels

Day 2 of #Blogmas – My Eating Disorder Recovery Story

In today’s post I’m going to open up about how my eating disorder developed and how I slowly recovered. I know that this is a very sensitive topic, so if you’re uncomfortable reading about my eating disorder and the recovery process, please skip this post and join me tomorrow for day 3 of The 12 Days of Blog-mas. Also, this post may be triggering, so please use your discretion when deciding whether or not to read this.

This is MY personal story, so please keep that in mind when you’re reading this.

***

While I was in elementary school and high school, I didn’t have bad body image. I didn’t think twice about what or how much food I was consuming, I didn’t care that my legs looked “overly musular”, and I never had negative thoughts when I looked at myself in the mirror. I didn’t wear makeup until the end of 12th grade and my main priorities included: sports, the cooking club, my grades, and having fun with my friends and family. I wasn’t full of myself and I didn’t think that I was or looked better than anyone else, I just accepted what I looked like and that was that.

I was pretty active growing up and in high school I ran long distance on a cross country team, ran relay races on a track and field team, played defence on 2 field hockey teams, and was in a rigorous conditioning program. In college I stayed active by running, playing recreational field hockey and dodgeball, dancing, and continuing with the conditioning program. While my friends went to the gym, I stayed home because in my mind I was already very active and going to the gym would have been redundant.

Halfway through my freshman year of college, I joined a sorority and got really into makeup. I started talking to some of my sisters about makeup and hair products and they opened my eyes to the wonderful world of beauty blogging. (PS, this was when phase 1 of pandamoniumpink.com was born.) I was happily blogging about beauty and skincare every single day and I eventually started a YouTube channel.

At this time, unfortunately, my grades started to suffer because I hated going to classes and I was no longer interested in my area of study. I didn’t know what I wanted to do career wise, I quit the majority of the sporting activities that I was a part of, I was put on probation in my sorority for poor grades, and my relationship with my boyfriend was struggling. It was a lot to deal with at 18 and back then, when things didn’t turn out the way that they should have, I shut down mentally.

The following December I withdrew my admission at college and I isolated myself from my friends and family. I gained weight, I had a lot of acne, and I spent most of my time cooped up in my room doing absolutely nothing. I still put on a happy face when I was blogging and YouTubing, but I wasn’t really the same person.

Half a year later, I went back to college and decided to give it another shot. I met a friend who was a gym enthusiast and I decided to join the community centre gym close to where I lived. I went purely to use the cardio machines in hopes to lose the extra weight that I had gained, and didn’t think twice about the free weights or any of the weight training machines. As I started to lose the weight, people started to notice. They complemented my efforts and I took that as a badge of approval.

I was happy that I had lost a significant amount of weight, but I knew that I that I could lose more. I did an excessive amount of cardio (2 hours a day) every single day, sometimes 2-3 times a day, and I eventually withered away to nothing. At the same time, I harshly restricted my eating by counting calories and skipping breakfast and lunch most days, I threw up anything that I had eaten that I thought was fatty, and I developed an unhealthy relationship with my body and food. I looked at the mirror whenever I had the chance and had negative thoughts racing through my head 24/7. In my mind, I wasn’t working hard enough. I still wasn’t skinny and I was failing all of my weight loss goals.

I was in therapy at the time being treated for anxiety and depression and whenever the topic of body image came up, I would lie and say that I was perfectly fine. I wore baggy sweatshirts to hide my extreme weight loss (plus, I was cold 24/7) and I used makeup and self tanning tricks to make my skin glow and appear healthy. I avoided any social gathering that revolved around food and I put myself on 2 liquid diets. I was down to weighing 85 pounds while being at the height of 5’5.

pandamoniumpink eating disorder recovery

Oh, I also ran a half marathon on an empty stomach while weighing 90 pounds. I do not recommend doing that AT ALL and it has to be one of the dumbest things that I have EVER done.

One day, I had dinner with a concerned friend and he said, “I’m not leaving until you finish my meal that I ordered.” I had ordered just a drink and he had ordered a bowl of chicken wings, a baked pasta, and a bread basket. Hearing him say that was my breaking point and I started crying right there at the table. I was crying because I knew that what I was doing to my body was wrong, I thought that I had let my family and friends down, and I was scared. I was really, really scared. 

pandamoniumpink eating disorder recovery

After that dinner, I got help. My therapy included eating disorder recovery and I went to my sessions 5-6 times a week, plus a group therapy session 1 time a week. My parents and friends monitored my eating habits and I stopped going to the gym. I started eating whole foods, and was slowly gaining the weight back.

After about 8 months of treatment, I stumbled upon my friend Amanda’s Instagram account. She was lifting heavy, eating properly to fuel her body, and was building muscle. She defied the stereotype that girls shouldn’t lift at the gym, and I was proud of her accomplishments and amazed that someone could transform their body in that way. She proved that going to the gym didn’t have to be a harmful activity and I literally said out loud to my therapist, “Amanda has inspired me to become healthy. I need to eat to get those kinds of results.”

pandamoniumpink eating disorder recovery

Long story short, I created an Instagram account and began my fitness journey to recovery. I ate 5 meals a day, I hired a personal trainer to work with me on strength training (I actually recommend working with a trainer or someone who knows what they’re doing if you’re someone who is just starting out at the gym. Not only will it benefit you in the long run, but you will also be less prone to injury.), and I didn’t really do any cardio. I met the most motivating and inspiring people on Instagram who I’m very fortunate to call my friends, family and life preservers.

As of December 2015, I have officially restored my weight. I’m currently sitting at 122 pounds and I’m feeling great about my body. I know that I’m mentally and physically in a healthy and good place and my body image is fantastic. I still get comments from people telling me that I’ve gained weight or that I look heavier than I used to, and honestly I take that as a complement because I NEEDED to gain weight.

Anyway, that’s my recovery story. I’m still on a mission to gain more weight, I’m still working hard at the gym, and I’m still going to therapy (2x a week). I have big, healthy goals for myself and I’m proud of my fitness journey thus far.

pandamoniumpink eating disorder recovery

If you want to follow  my fitness journey via picture form, check out my Instagram account because I post on there quite often!

I hope you enjoyed hearing my eating disorder recovery story and if you’re struggling with an eating disorder, know of someone who is, or want to talk to someone, please call 310-6789, which is the BC, Canada Crisis line that is open 24 hours a day. To learn more, check out: http://www.heretohelp.bc.ca/factsheet/eatingdisorders#sthash.9vuSPNFV.dpuf

Keep smiling,
Kels

How Drinking 96 oz of Water Daily Improved My Life – The Benefits of Drinking Water And Tips For How You Can Drink More!

One of my goals for the month of October was to drink 96 oz (12 cups) of water every single day. On average, I drink around 64 oz of water a day (I fill my 32oz Nalgene water bottle up twice), but my trainer challenged me to drink 32 more oz of water every day for 31 days to see how it would affect my body.

DOASFJKABenefits Of Drinking Water Pandamoniumpink

At first I thought that this challenge was going to be a no brainer. How hard could it be to up my water intake by another 32 oz? Well, after the first day of drinking 96 oz, I came to the conclusion that drinking 32 oz more water every day was A LOT harder to do than it sounds (Duh, Kels… it’s a challenge for a reason.)!

Although I was constantly running back and forth from my desk to the washroom, drinking more water helped me realize that during a meal I typically reached for soda or juice instead of water (which cost me extra money and upped my sugar intake), a lot of the times when I thought I was hungry, I was actually just thirsty, and I did a terrible job of replenishing my body with water after a workout.

Benefits Of Drinking Water Pandamoniumpink

So what were the benefits of upping my water consumption? Did I see any improvements? YES, drinking more water DEFINITELY improved my body and mind in the following ways:

1. I felt more awake and focused throughout the day.
I used to drink 8 cups of water and 4 cups of coffee per day, which made me feel drained and sluggish instead of wide-awake and wired. When I replaced those 4 cups of coffee with water, I was more focused on my tasks at work and I didn’t feel like I needed a nap when 3pm rolled around. I guess you could also say that water also helped me kick my caffeine addiction to the curb!

2. My acne disappeared.
When I drank more water, a lot of my acne disappeared and my complexion cleared up, which truly shocked me. The solution to get rid of my acne was SO simple, yet I seriously overlooked it. Goodbye harsh acne face washes and scrubs!

3. My headaches stopped.
I used to get headaches ALL THE TIME and instead of drinking more water, I would pop an Advil. When I upped my water intake, my headaches disappeared, which made me realize that I was poisoning my liver for no good reason.

4. It kept me regular.
Water helps with digestion and it prevents constipation. It helps move waste and toxins out of the body, so it’s a natural detox. Instead of turning to detox teas or supplements, grab some water instead!

5. I stopped snacking late at night.
Water fills the body up, raises the metabolism, and is a natural hunger suppressant. I used to snack a lot late at night (we’re talking 3am, here) because I was desperate for something salty or sweet, but once I started drinking more water, the cravings went away and I cut my late night snacking out all together.

6. My mood improved.
I was happier because I was more awake, I could focus easily on my tasks (YASSS to productivity!), my skin cleared up, and I didn’t get headaches anymore. Like I mentioned above, the solution to a lot of my problems was WATER, which is crazy to think about because it’s such a simple fix.

Benefits Of Drinking Water Pandamoniumpink

If you’re not drinking at least 8 cups of water per day, I HIGHLY recommend that you do so. I know that drinking water isn’t the easiest thing to do, so here are some tips and tricks that I learnt over the past 31 days:

1. Use a water bottle or water jug that has the measurements marked on the side.
The marked measurements will help you keep track of how much water you’ve consumed and how much you have left. I’m a visual person, so this tip helped me quite a bit. I suggest getting a Nalgene water bottle or Blender Bottle!

2. Make hourly water goals.
My trainer told me to break my water goal down and drink 19.2oz every 3 hours. I consumed 19.2oz by 9am, 38.4oz by 12pm, 57.6oz by 3pm, 76.8oz by 6pm, and 96oz by 9pm. This made my goal less intimidating and by the 15th day of the challenge, I even found myself drinking around 100oz per day.

3. Flavor your water with vegetables and fruit.
I’m not going to lie, I got bored of the taste of water really quickly. To remedy this, I avoided artificial water enhancers and added cucumber slices, lemon slices, orange slices, and frozen fruit to my water bottle to give the water some flavor. Drink your water out of a straw if your water bottle doesn’t have an infuser!

4. Stop drinking water 1 hour before you go to bed.
The worst feeling is when you’re finally comfortable in bed after a long day of running around and all of a sudden you have to get up and go to the washroom. I stopped drinking water an hour before I planned to go to bed to avoid multiple trips to the bathroom!

5. Give yourself Drink Water NOW reminders.

If you don’t want to make hourly water goals like I did, download a water app, set reminders on your phone, or write in your planner. When you’re busy and on the go, drinking water is sometimes the last thing that you’re thinking about.

Benefits Of Drinking Water Pandamoniumpink

I hope you all enjoyed reading about how consuming more water improved my daily life and I challenge you to consume 8-12 cups of water every day and see how it can change YOUR life! Feel free to share your experience in the comment section down below, on Twitter @pandamoniumpink, or on Instagram @pandamoniumpinkfit.

Keep smiling,
Kels

*Picture Credit:
1. I took this picture in August 2015 of my Nalgene water bottle with my iPhone 5s while hiking in Manning Park.
2. http://goo.gl/olQzpB
3. http://goo.gl/FOQrf2
4. http://goo.gl/DUh72b

Here’s To New Beginnings

Hello and welcome to Pandamoniumpink.com!

pandamoniumpink

My name is Kels and I’m in my 20’s. I enjoy eating fish tacos and sushi, reading Sophie Kinsella novels, pumping iron at the gym (honestly, I don’t think I’m #GymRat enough to use that phrase, but I’m just going to go with it), watching Netflix, and writing. I’m deathly afraid of carnival clowns (hello American Horror Story season 4!), my guilty pleasure TV show is The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, and I collect food themed socks. I’m the happiest when I’m outdoors and surrounded by nature, I have a pet hamster named Burger, and my favorite color is fire truck red. I have extremely supportive parents and friends, I despise the rain, and I can perfectly recite every line from Batman Begins.

Did I just share way too much information, way too soon? My apologies, you’ll learn quickly that I love to ramble.

5 years ago my boyfriend at the time encouraged me to start Pandamoniumpink.com to blog about beauty and fashion. I was going into my sophomore year of college and I was more infatuated with makeup, skincare, clothes and shoes than I was with computer science. I found a lot of joy in writing product reviews, sharing pictures of my purchases, and documenting my personal life.

1 later, I discovered the beauty community on YouTube. Even though I was a makeup fan girl and not a makeup artist, I decided to purchase a cheap digital camera, make a YouTube channel, and film beauty related videos. Honestly, I didn’t think much about my decision to start a YouTube channel until last year when I found myself sitting in a meeting room at my first “big girl” paid marketing job. YouTube introduced me to the world of marketing, specifically social and digital media marketing, and it has not only given me a job, but also a career.

pandamoniumpink

Since I was having a lot of fun filming, editing and uploading YouTube videos, 3 years ago I decided to enroll in business school. For the past 3 years I learnt about all the aspects of marketing (and I even dabbled into radio and broadcast communications) and now I work as a social and digital marketing manager and social media marketing content creator.

So what does this have to do with my blog?

Well, since I make a living creating and facilitating social and digital marketing plans for businesses and content creators, I think and talk a lot about blogs and blogging. This past year I neglected my own blog because I was too busy instructing other people how to make a blog, write blog posts, and stay on a posting schedule (which I know is very ironic), and I really missed it! Blogging is a fantastic creative outlet and for me it’s extremely therapeutic.

Last month I decided that I wanted to start blogging again and over the past few weeks I’ve spent a good amount of time staring at my blog wondering where to start. Every time I began writing a post about a makeup product that I’m currently trying out, I hit a mental roadblock. A week ago while I was at the gym, it hit me: I’m no longer interested in beauty and fashion. Sure I still wear makeup and I enjoy shopping for new clothes and shoes, but it doesn’t excite me like it used to. I realized that I’m much more passionate about health, fitness, and wellness, and I would much rather write about my health and fitness journey than beauty and fashion.

pandamoniumpink

Okay, well now what?

I’ve decided to take a leap a faith and re-brand my blog. I want to start fresh and take my blog in a new direction. I want to share my personal stories about overcoming an eating disorder, my current workout routine, healthy recipes that I use on a daily basis, fitness tips and tricks, and so much more. Sure I’m going to find it challenging at first to adjust to these blog changes and of course I might lose my subscribers and viewership, but I want to take the risk. I want to dive into this headfirst and if it fails miserably, at least I can say I gave it a shot.

pandamoniumpink
Top: Me at 115 lbs, Bottom: Me at 85 lb

Before I end this rather lengthy first post, I wanted to take the time to thank YOU the reader, the many brands and companies that I’ve had the chance to worth with over the past 5 years, and my management team. Pandamoniumpink.com has truly changed my life and it has allowed me to experience so many things that I wouldn’t have been able to do if it wasn’t for this blog. Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who has made this online adventure unforgettable and I hope you all will continue to follow my blog’s journey and posts on pandamoniumpink.com.

Don’t forget you can also connect with me on YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest and Periscope!

Keep smiling,
Kels