Friday, March 29, 2013


Hi loves! I'm off today for Good Friday so I'm skipping our regularly scheduled Friday's Letters. Instead I'm going to direct your attention over to Ms. Manda's blog where I am guest posting for her today about my spring wants.
I am going to spend my day cleaning, doing a little shopping and hitting up a Body Combat workout class later today. Happy long weekend and Happy Easter! Don't forget that Jesus is the reason for this season and take a moment to be thankful!


Thursday, March 28, 2013

30 Miles in 30 Days - March Is Dunzo

And just like that, it's OVER! (...Well technically you have 3 more days to finish up your miles if you need that time.) I have gotten enough comments from people saying they would be interested in linking up if we did this challenge again in April, plus I need the extra motivation too. So if you missed out on March then GET IN ON APRIL! 30 Miles in 30 Days is the challenge. You can get the miles in any way that is comfortable for your fitness level - running, jogging, walking, elliptical, bike. The whole point of the challenge is to motivate each other to get active.

Don't forget to show some love to the sweet Ms. Sarah who created this super cute button for the link up!
So button up and let's keep each other motivated!
The Pink Growl Link Up  
Manda is on vacay this week so she killed all her miles before she left, even though she's at Disney right now so she's getting all kinds of a heads up on April.  
Updates on This Week's Progress:
  • I had a GREAT week, BUT it has been busy! I'm working on a huge project at work that has really tied up my schedule and kept me working lots of hours. Good for keeping my mind busy, bad for getting in bed early, getting up for morning workouts and making time for exercise.
  • My goal was to lose 8 lbs in March, and I failed miserably - booooo! I haven't weighed since last week but I'm pretty sure I'll end up only losing 2 lbs.
  • My Fitness Pal & My Polar FT4 HRM are GREAT motivational tools for me! If you want to friend me on MFP my username is {nikkibradley918}.
  • Pinterest has been a great source to find some at-home 30 min or less circuit workouts! If I fail to get out of bed at 5am and get to the gym, and I have plans in the evening I can always squeeze one of those quick workouts in. Makes me feel better to at least do something even if I can't hit the gym.
My total miles for week 4:
Monday 3/25
~2 miles walk/jog on treadmill
 = 2 miles total

Tuesday 3/26
~4 miles stationary bike
= 4 miles total
Wednesday 3/27
~1.5 miles treadmill
~3 miles stationary bike
= 4.5 miles total

TOTAL MILES FOR WEEK 4: 10.5 miles!
Total Miles for Challenge: 31 miles!
Going into the challenge again for April, I have a better idea about how to prioritize my miles in my schedule and make it work. The challenge honestly did keep me working out on days that I didn't feel like it. Plus, I really got into doing circuit workouts in March at home outside the gym and I love them! Definitely looking forward to getting some outdoor runs in for April and more long distance runs. I felt like I was doing all of mine a mile at a time and I can do better than that! 
What were your challenges this week? Thank you to everyone who linked up last week, I loved reading your posts!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

In Which I Begin To Date Again...

We haven't had real talk in a minute so I thought now would be as good of a time as any. If you are new to following me then you might think my life is quite the emotional roller coaster hot mess these days. You would be pretty much accurate! I try to be honest about my feelings, and maybe if you've ever been through a similar situation then you can relate. If not then God bless your soul you are one of the lucky ones! I want to keep it real that way maybe my story can help someone else not feel alone. Feeling all the ups & downs along the way is just part of it.

Anyhow I'm starting to date again...slowly but surely. Here's the breakdown for you:
8 - total number of dates
4 - number of boys I've been on dates with
4- number of other boys who have asked me out but I have cancelled on them
3 - number of fireman included
2 - number of boys who have taken me on dates who I dated casually in high school 
1 - number of recurring boy toys (date numbers do NOT include him since he's a constant)
1 - number of boys who I want to go out with but my brother has refused to allow it
Dating is complicated ya'll! Or maybe I just make it that way. I'm a relationship kinda girl. I've been in two serious relationships in my life. One started in high school and lasted off & on for 2.5 years. Then I met Skye after being single for only a couple months and he and I jumped in head first. 7 years, 11 months and one engagement ring later we all know how that ended. I've been a single girl for almost 5 months now. It has been quite the adjustment period for me - and I'm still adjusting!
I'm not a good casual dater. Being in this casual relationship with this boy toy fella has really opened my eyes and sometimes it's complicated, but it's also been really a blessing in disguise for me. Typically I feel like it's a waste of time for me to entertain the idea of dating anyone who I couldn't picture myself being in a relationship with. But then again, some boys were just made to enjoy right?? I go back and forth on that concept at least weekly. I definitely feel pressure to settle down sooner rather than later. Pressure because I'm 28, pressure because Skye has had 3409374 girlfriends since we broke up, pressure because I am traditionally a relationship person and everybody knows it. I have to admit that Skye and I had a damn near perfect relationship. He was a pretty great boyfriend most of the time and he knew me so well; so I have expectations in my mind that not all boys can live up to. I'm not in any sort of rush to jump back into a relationship though so I am just trying to take my time and make the right decisions, and have a little fun along the way. I mean I have gotten a Luke Bryan concert out of this dating thing so that ain't half bad in my book!

Honestly, I have faith in God's perfect timing for me. Getting back involved in church has really helped me relax with life's timing and just not worry about what lies ahead. That includes dating and finding my perfect man.

Meanwhile I will just wait on this guy to come sweep me off my feet....
Oh HEEEEEEEEEEY Adam Levine! I saw you lookin all hot playin those drums last night on The Voice premiere!


Monday, March 25, 2013

Weekend Update

Monday... I am totally hating on Monday today! I am just not interested in playing the Monday game. It's snowing today...the average high for this time of the year is low 60's and today it's snowing. This never ending winter weather has me in a funk and I just want to hibernate.
Craft night was a success Friday! I was pretty proud of my little creation. The rest of the weekend I was lazy like it was my job. I managed to drag myself out of the house for a few errands on Saturday, church & grocery shopping on Sunday but other than that I was a homebody. The weather was grey & rainy all weekend so that definitely did not help matters. I stuffed my face and didn't work out at all...oops! I am in a PMS-induced, weather funk and I need it to go away!
I am becoming the queen of low key weekends, and I can't say that I hate it. Here's a peek at my weekend via Instagram {nikkib918} -
Love this quote!
The beginnings of a fabulous craft night with my work girls

My button canvas masterpiece

I just can't get enough of motivational quotes lately

Typical Tilly and I - lazy, blanket, cuddles, TV
My newest additions to my book pile - We are about to start the Joel Osteen book in my small group. I used to read all Nicholas Sparks books, but then got over the lovey nature of them. I guess I felt like I needed some love in my life!

Lastly, hop on over to Melissa's blog and enter yourself in this giveaway to win $150 in giftcards to all your fav places! Yours truly is giving away a sweet little prize to Forever21!
Group giveaway
1 // Sarah  // $15 Starbucks Gift Card
2 // Brianne // $20 Etsy Gift Card
3 // Meghan // $25 Victoria Secrets Gift Card
4 // Maia // $10 Target Gift Card
5 // Gia // $10 Starbucks Gift Card + $5 Sponsor Spot
6 // Kristine // $10 Target Gift Card
7 // Rebecca //  $20 Amazon Gift Card + 1 month large Ad Space
8 // Angela // $15 itunes Gift Card
9 // Nikki // Forever 21 Gift Card
10 // Chloe // $10 Barnes & Nobles Gift Card
11 // Melissa // $10 Francesca's Gift Card

Friday, March 22, 2013

Friday's Letters


Dear "so-called" Spring Time - get with the program! 50 degrees is NOT spring. I want last weekend back with it's sun and 75 degree days. Dear Week - You were pretty good to me, so I can't major breakdowns, no cavities, 2 dates, joined a new small group and you flew by. Kudos! Dear Next Week - I am ready to conquer your little ass already! After next week, my work stress should end because the project I've been working on will be over Thursday. Plus, 4 day work week - HOLLLLLLA! Dear Girls Craft Night Tonight - I'm so excited to create a masterpiece! bahaha that's probably taking it a bit far...Here's what we are making so hopefully they will turn out fabulous -
Dear Mexican Food - I have a new lust for you. It's not good for my diet, but you are just so yummy to me these days. Dear Throwback Thursday #tbt- I got my brother good yesterday! His booty circa 1990 is now all over Instagram. He loves me!
Dear 30 Miles in 30 Days Challenge - I am coming for you strong this coming week so I can be proud of myself in my own challenge. Also, for those of you interested - I will be hosting the link up again on Thursdays in April. Let's challenge ourselves to get at least another 30 miles in before summer! For those more advanced who do like 30 miles in a week - I invite you to link up too! I just like reading the stories of all fitness levels for inspiration!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

30 Miles in 30 Days Challenge Update - Week 3

I can't believe we are facing winding down week 3 of this challenge. Honestly, it makes me sad. I like this little extra push of motivation and I will probably keep it up for the month of April. What do y'all think of that? Would you participate if I kept the link up going for another 30 days?

Don't forget to show some love to the sweet Ms. Sarah who created this super cute button for the link up!
So button up and let's keep each other motivated!
The Pink Growl Link Up  
Manda and I are keeping daily tabs on each other and texting for support & motivation. It really helps to have someone hold you accountable and offer some words of encouragement. If you need us to do this for you, just holla! And I am posting some updates via Twitter & Instagram {nikkib918} too.
Updates on This Week's Progress:
  • I had a minor set back last week in the form of a stressful day. Those things are dangerous for me at this point. Thursday's stress spiraled into Friday & Saturday and I got behind on exercise and definitely stuffed my face. 
  • I gained back the 2 lbs that I lost, but I have since lost them back this week. So even though I had a goal to lose 8 lbs in March, I'm only at 2 so far. But I'm going to keep pushing! I would be very happy with 5 lbs at this point.
  • My Fitness Pal & My Polar FT4 HRM are GREAT motivational tools for me! If you want to friend me on MFP my username is {nikkibradley918}.
  • Pinterest has been a great source to find some at-home 30 min or less circuit workouts! If I fail to get out of bed at 5am and get to the gym, and I have plans in the evening I can always squeeze one of those quick workouts in. Makes me feel better to at least do something even if I can't hit the gym.
My total miles for week 3:
Sunday 3/17
~struggled through the HARDEST most painful 1 mile of my life jogging outside
 = 1 mile total

Wednesday 3/20 
~4 miles stationary bike
= 4 miles total
Thursday 3/21
~1 mile on treadmill
= 1 miles total

Total Miles for Challenge: 20.5 miles!
Only 9.5 more to go in 10 days!
Honestly going into this challenge I thought I would be WAY over 30 miles by the 30 day mark. With extra work hours, friend time, dating, joining a new small group at church and just general running around - It's been tougher than I realized to get these miles in 1 & 2 miles at a time. Knowing this challenge was in progress has definitely been a good motivator for me on the days when I've slacked off though. I will probably end up right at 30 miles by the end of the month, but dangit I will finish. And maybe for April I will have a more realistic timeline for pacing myself throughout the month.
What were your challenges this week? Thank you to everyone who linked up last week, I loved reading your posts!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Random Wednesday

Let's face it, if you know Shanna, then you love her. I adore her so much! She is so sweet to me and is ALWAYS uplifting me and/or making me giggle. I want to squeeze her fashionable little self in real life one day! But for now we'll just link up with her for Random Wednesday.
Have you guys tried the new Hazelnut Machiatto from Starbucks? OOOOMMMMGGG it's like Heaven in a cup, and I know that's blasphemous to say but my word it's true. So yummy. And of course I prefer the iced version...also for 10 less calories. But at $3.90 a pop for a tall this girl will definitely not be making this a regular purchase. #balleronabudget
I know all you girls feel me on the JT train.... That boy just does no wrong! He will always have my heart because he's a good ole Tennessee boy! I am loving his new cd so far!
I went to the dentist for my 6 month cleaning/checkup yesterday and I was cavity free. I am soooo thankful for this because a) I have been eating large amounts of junk food/diet cokes lately and b) I have severe dentist anxiety so getting a filling would probably send me over the edge right now.
It's been a great week for me, so far! I am swamped at work again this week and will I get this grant project turned in next Thursday, but the days are flying by. And I've been keeping busy after work too, which helps me not binge eat and helps me keep a positive attitude to surround myself with friends. Today is the first day of spring too and how can you not be excited about that??

Don't forget to link up tomorrow for the 30 Miles in 30 Day Challenge Week 3 Update!
Happy Hump Day!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Weekend Update

First of all, thank you ALL for your sweet & encouraging comments to me after my woe is me post on Friday! I've said it before, but it's SO TRUE that your support means so much to me and it always makes me feel better.

Move to BlogLovin' Update: I did manage to get all my blogs imported from Google Reader into BlogLovin' YAY! That was easy enough. However....I have a problem with my blog's RSS feed so when my blog shows up on their platform it's a older version? I'm not really into all this technical crap so I have no idea how to fix it. If anyone can help - I would really appreciate it!
This weekend I needed some time to connect with myself and get my head in the right place. It was an absolutely gorgeous weekend in Knoxville - 75 and sunny on Saturday. I actually got a sunburn! I spent a lot of time with my family and felt very uplifted and productive. Since I'm trying to save money these days I didn't venture out and about to really celebrate St. Patty's day - which sucks to see everyone else having fun, but I knew I needed to be responsible. Ugh! I have a busy week ahead of me, which should keep my mind busy. I struggled through the absolute hardest mile of my life yesterday. My body was just not into it. My back, shins and calves were just screaming at me to stop. Hopefully tonight when I hit the gym, that little problem will not greet me again. It was awful! But we still have 2 weeks to go in the 30 Miles in 30 Days Challenge so I've got to keep moving forward.
Here's a glimpse at my uneventful weekend - via Instagram {nikkib918}
My gorgeous bracelet I got in the mail Friday from my sweet friend Manda - she is such a treasure in my life!

Running around town Saturday with my little 15&14 year old step-brothers - much needed sunroof sunshine & family time

After church snack on Sunday - I could drink these all day long

Sweet Tilly waiting on mama to quit working on Sunday so we could play outside
And here's a little motivation for your Monday (probably more for myself than you, but here you go anyhow) - Simple, yet hard to remember during a stressful moment.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Friday WTFs

All I have to say today my friends is TGIF & Go Vols! Well that's not really ALL I have to say...but the only nice thing really.
Yesterday was a very stressful day for me. My work life is very hectic and high stress right now - and yesterday I collapsed under the pressure. I ate 2 cupcakes, M&Ms, drank like 5 Diet Cokes and several snacks from my desk stash - that was in on top of regular meals. Then I got home and I ate some more, including ice cream, and cried. I should have come home and gone for a long run, but I didn't. WHYYYYYY do I stress eat? Why did yesterday just dominate my ass? Why can't I control it? I've had a really positive two weeks with eating and working out. I had lost 2 lbs, and I felt great. Yesterday just made me feel awful about myself and miserable because I caved under that stress. For the next 3-4 weeks I have projects at work that are going to be stressful and will monopolize my time, and I must learn to control these triggers. I've never struggled with these problems until after my engagement ended back in early November...which is a whole different level of frustrating to understand. Lack of control is a huge theme in my life right sad as that is to admit. If you're the praying kind, then please just send a tiny one up for me.
Today is a new day though. I cannot will not allow the stress to get the best of me.
THEN, I realize that my Facebook layout has changed completely and I have to switch over to BlogLovin' because Google Reader is going away in July. I created a BlogLovin' account wwwwayyyy back when and now when I try to claim my blog it shows my recent posts as ones from Feb 2012. I can't even begin to deal with that I'm not going to. If anyone has easy tips on how to make the BlogLovin' switch, please let me know and I will try to work on that this weekend. UGH!
My Vols are playing Game 2 today in the SEC Tourney. This makes me feel a little happiness! And I see a glass of wine in my future this evening so there's that glimmer of hope too...
Here's to a HAPPY WEEKEND!


Thursday, March 14, 2013

30 Miles in 30 Days Challenge - Week 2 Update

Another week down and we are at the halfway point with our 30 Miles in 30 Days Challenge! I am trying to think of a challenge for April too, so if you have any ideas let me know.

Don't forget to show some love to the sweet Ms. Sarah who created this super cute button for the link up!
So button up and let's keep each other motivated!
The Pink Growl Link Up  
Manda and I are keeping daily tabs on each other and texting for support & motivation. It really helps to have someone hold you accountable and offer some words of encouragement. If you need us to do this for you, just holla! And I am posting some updates via Twitter & Instagram {nikkib918} too.
Updates on This Week's Progress:
  • I wore some old running shoes to Zumba class one night this week and they gave me KILLER shin splints! No good!
  • My body does NOT like to go to bed early. Even though 3-4 days of the work week I am getting up at 5am, I cannot seem to fall asleep before 11-11:30pm. I feel tired, but I'm hoping once I get more adjusted that will pass.
  • I lost 2 lbs last week! Only 6 more to go to reach my March weight goal!
  • I am over my sickness...knock on wood!
  • My Fitness Pal & My Polar FT4 HRM are GREAT motivational tools for me! If you want to friend me on MFP my username is {nikkibradley918}.
  • Workout Schedule: I am doing 1-2 60 minute Zumba classes a week (depending on my work schedule), 4-5 60 minute workouts in the gym (cardio & strength training) and trying to fit in at least one at home circuit training mini-workout. Below is the one I did this week - I burned about 55 calories per set and did 3 sets. It only took me 17.5 minutes to burn 161 calories - easy enough, but I was sore the next day. I found this on Pinterest.

My total miles for week 2:
Sunday 3/10
~walked .5 on treadmill as warm-up pre-workout (3.5mph pace)
~ran 1.1 miles on treadmill (avg 5.8 mph pace)
 = 1.6 miles total

Tuesday 3/12 
~1.6 miles warm-up on stationary bike
~2.4 miles on stationary bike
= 4 miles total
Thursday 3/7
~1.4 miles on treadmill (5.9 mph pace)
= 1.4 miles total

Total Miles for Challenge: 14.5 miles!
Only 15.5 more to go!
I was hoping to be a little bit further ahead than this by now, but I'm okay with it. I have really focused on doing strength training workouts this week instead of getting my miles in. I plan on going for a nice jog outside tonight after work though so hopefully that will help my overall total.
Where did you end up for Week 2? What were your challenges this week? Thank you to everyone who linked up last week, I loved reading your posts!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Currently - March Edition

Listening...Luke Bryan's new Spring Break cd, makes me so pumped for the lake this summer! And I am obsessed with Lady A's new Downtown song. Still on my country kick apparently.

Eating... healthy this week, no cheating, even if it kills me. I need to see some results with weight loss! Why is it that it's sooooo easy to pack on the pounds but hard as hell to work them back off? Healthy Choice Frozen Greek Yogurt in Vanilla Bean is definitely one of my fav snacks - only 100 cals and tastes like ice cream!
One of my favs...especially since I struggle with mindless "binge" eating
Drinking... I am diet mountain dew fiend! I know I should go easy on the aspartame, but damn that stuff is delicious! Also, definitely making an effort to drink less alcohol these days for the sole purpose of not drinking my calories.

Wearing.... bright pink polish on my nails & toes - getting ready for spring!

Feeling...sore, but in a good way. Satisfied that I pushed myself to get out of my warm bed and to the gym this morning. Fulfilled & Thankful! Looking forward to my dinner & movie date tomorrow night with my work girls and happy hour Thursday night with old friends!

Weather...54 and cloudy today, but supposed to be sunny and warm again by the weekend. And speaking of warmer weather this girl needs a tan...BAD! find a money tree. Anybody know where I can find one? To find out what happens in Beautiful Redemption (Book 4 of the Beautiful Creatures series)! I finished reading Beautiful Chaos last night and holy cliffhanger, I am dying to see what happens, even though I don't think it will be the obvious answer. 

Thinking...about relationships in my life and how I can be a better sister/daughter/friend (deep, I know haha) social media fixes, my current surge of willpower, my Polar HRM, unlimited text messages, my blog friends and all the love and support you guys offer me


Monday, March 11, 2013

Weekend Update

Can we rewind this thing and pretend like it's Friday again? I had a fabulous weekend y'all! I finally felt like "myself" again - as in not sick & happy! And that's a good feeling! I ended up going out to a whole in the wall bar unexpectedly Friday night with my aunt (who is more like my mama) and ran into some people I knew too and drank too much just had a great time! Then Saturday I was in recovery mode - oops! Yesterday I got up for church and checked so much stuff off my to do list. Yes, I am that person who has a to do list every weekend and it felt so good. Oh and I got caught up on 4 weeks worth of laundry - yay for clean undies! Not to mention the weather in Knoxville was very spring like - sunny, warm and 60's - you can't have a bad weekend with weather like that! I lost 2 lbs last week, which is great, but I know I could have eaten a little better and maybe lost an extra one. Probably shouldn't have had all that beer Friday night. Here's to a successful this week!
Don't forget I will be doing the 30 Miles in 30 Days Challenge Link up again on Thursday so update me on your progress if you are playing along!
Here's a peek at my weekend via Instagram - find me yo! {nikkib918}
T-shirts from the whole in the wall bar Friday night - I thought they were hilarious!

Friendly Saturday Reminder

Tilly had major bed head Sunday AM - someone needs a haircut!

Sunday workout powered by Miley Cyrus - The guy on the treadmill next to me liked it because he told me "good choice"

Target Clearance rack haul - 2 sports bras and workout top for $25! Can't beat that!
That's my story for today. Happy Monday to all my girls!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Friday's Letters


Dear Sunshine - You make my day! Nothing makes me happier than having to break out the sunglasses on the way into work because the beautiful sun is showing her lovely face. (I say nothing makes me happier, but the only thing that does is also hearing Rocky Top on the radio while driving into work with the sun shining - which totally happened today!) Dear 30milesin30days link up - Thank you to everyone who linked up (or plans to next week)! It's such a motivation to me so read your stories for the week and I love that we are staying active and reaching our goals TOGETHER! Warms my little heart!
This might be Tilly & I before too long....bahahaha
Dear Weekend - I have big plans for you - cleaning, laundry, hella workouts, time with friends, church...I can't wait! I am so ready for the time change, & 65 and sunny on Sunday! Dear Caffeine - I love you - mostly in Starbucks & Diet Mt Dew/Diet Coke form, but I really just love you!
Delicious extra boost this morning - totally worth the 210 calories to me
Dear Motivation - I am so happy that we are friends again. This week has presented me with a couple challenges, but I have managed to overcome them and stay steady in my workouts, eating healthy & praying. I feel so accomplished and I love that feeling! Dear Janelle from American Idol - I'm not typically an A.I. fan, but Janelle Arthur is from Oliver Springs, TN and she's my good friend's cousin. Plus, she's a great singer and she's a good old country gal! It's pretty cool to hear them talking about small town TN on national TV.
Happy Weekend my loves! Make a little time to get in your miles!