The Miles Ahead

It is acceptable to say that I am a confident person.  I have been called strong-willed by multiple people, and to me, that is a HUGE compliment.  It is atypical to become a strong-willed person overnight.  Almost always, a strong-willed person has had to overcome a myriad of obstacles that served to mold them into a down and dirty, teeth-clenching, goal-setting maniac.

Image

If everything in life was in our favor what a world this would be!  We would never have bad mornings that created a spiraling and terrible rest of the day.  My hair would always look as though I cared enough to fix it.  Results from a new fitness regimen would be instantaneous; there would be no weight gain or debilitating muscle soreness and fatigue.  There have been days that I have been so sore that it was excruciating to walk – these were the moments I began to wonder if I was determined or just plain crazy.

Image

I have struggled many times during my journey to re-awaken my inner athlete.  When I began “running” in May of 2012, I couldn’t run more than a couple of minutes at a time.  Thank goodness for Couch to 5K on my iPhone (I highly recommend this for the beginner – I promise it works!).  I have to admit that I was extremely jelly of the random “runner” on my neighborhood path.  There she was, bounding along with her perfect ponytail and strong stride, leaving me in the proverbial dust.

Image

There were days that I prayed for the strength to walk out my front door.

I kept at it.  I told myself that any time I spent on the pavement was beneficial.  I started to appreciate simpler things like sunny days and the smell of laundry as I passed houses in my neighborhood.  As I connected with the outside world, being perfect didn’t seem that important.  I ran my first 5K in July of 2012, and had a blast!

Image

Running can provide life with a lot of perspective.  Joel Osteen, a popular televangelist, has an excellent way of relating running to life.  He says that while running you must focus on here and now.  The past is obviously behind you, and if you look back too often you risk stumbling and scraping your knees.  If you focus too far into the future, or upon how many miles you have left to go, it’s incredibly easy to become overwhelmed and tempted to give up.

So as I look forward to my longest race ever tomorrow, I must remind myself that I am prepared for here and now.

Image

And hey, when you are running your first race of a particular distance, you’ve automatically achieved a PR.

Here’s to that finish line,

Audrey

Image

Advertisements

Bunny Friendly Beauty

I’ve been asked by a few lovely ladies to divulge my scoop on transitioning to a cruelty free beauty regimen.  The full move to all vegan products can be daunting, and it is something I’m still experimenting with.  All of this is based on my personal research, and I always recommend doing research before you try/buy.

Here are the goods I think are best so far:

Shampoo, Conditioner, Body Wash & Body Lotion

Yes to Carrots – available at Wal-Mart and Walgreens

Image

gud (made by Burt’s Bees) – my fave is Pearanormal Activity

Image

St. Ives Daily Hydrating Lotion – it has a clean scent, and leaves my skin very soft.

Image

Kiss my Face Peaceful Patchouli Body Lotion – I promise you won’t smell like too much like a hippie (wink wink).

Image

Deodorant

Tom’s of Maine – the best is Wild Lavender; buy 2 to keep one on hand because this does not have antiperspirant.  Aluminum is bad for your boobies, and face it ladies – sweat is a natural human function.

Image

Toothpaste

Tom’s of Maine – the Wicked Fresh Cool Peppermint kind tastes the best, and has the longest lasting freshness.

Image

Lip Care

Burt’s Bees – some vegans may give you stink face over the beeswax, but I’m not one of them.  Some of their products (i.e. body wash) has milk ingredients, so read the label before venturing into other products.  Also, Yes to Carrots has colored gloss that’s good.

Image

Sunblock

Image

Kinesys is simply the best by far for poolside, sport and everyday use.  I unfortunately learned this the hard way as you can see in the above picture.

Image

Face

Nature’s Gate – I like their acne line.  It is very gentle and soothing.

Image

Yes to Carrots – I use their Yes to Cucumbers Calming Moisturizer and make-up removing wipes (this one won an Allure award).  Also, I use Yes to Blueberries Firming Eye Cream.

Image

And finally, make-up.  This one has been rough!  I’ve been through multiple brands and make-up meltdowns to give you the down and dirty.

Concealer, Base, Blush, Bronzer, Eye Color & Brushes

Everyday Minerals – this brand is the stuff online shopping dreams are made of.  They send you free samples so you can find your shade, and they have super-fast shipping.  It’s very gentle for my sensitive skin, and has staying power.  Their matte-base is buildable and gives Bare Minerals a serious run for their money (without the icky chemicals).

Image

Mascara, Eye Color & Primers

e.l.f (eyes lips face) – yes, this brand, found at Target, is cheap as dirt and awesome!  I use their waterproof mascara for long-lasting lashes and bronzer for my décolletage.

Image

Urban Decay – available online or at Sephora.  Their Primer Potion is part of my everyday routine.  My fave shade is Sin, which can be worn alone or with shadow.  It’s a rose gold shade, which is trending now.  All of their eye colors are vivid, long lasting and well worth the money.  Their vegan friendly products are identified clearly on the package.

Image

I hope you find this guide helpful in your journey.  Remember, don’t be overwhelmed – it’s best to transition gradually to avoid emptying your bank account.  Keep in mind that any one choice you make to make the lives of animals better and the future of our Earth brighter is making a difference.  Good luck!

Ahimsa,

Audrey