Friday Faves

Hi friends! Happy Friday! How was the week? I hope you had a great one. I don’t know about you, but this week has been a blur. I feel like I was scrambling around more than usual – Miss P got pink eye, poor girl – and feel like today is a sigh of relief. I’m definitely ready for some downtime and having another adult around the house. 


(These two just make my heart so happy. P wore the flight suit for about 2 minutes so I could take pics, but was quickly back into her beloved Elena costume she wears 24/7.)

What do you have going on this weekend? I’d love to hear what you’re up to! We’re just chilling here at home, possibly taking a day trip to Jacksonville (yay, Trader Joe’s!), and taking Livi on a dinner date. We haven’t taken her out on her own in quite a while, and it’s something she always looks forward to. 

It’s time for the weekly Friday Faves roundup! This is where I share some of the best eats, reads, finds, fitness tips and random faves from the week. It’s always so much fun to hear about your faves too, so please join in the party in the comments section if you would like.


Wrapping up Week 2 of Winter Shape Up! The challenge is still rockin’ – your check-ins have been so motivating and inspirational. Yesterday, Katie led a live Pilates class in our Facebook group. The group has been such a great spot to share meal ideas and fitness successes with each other. Keep up the great work! 

The Fitnessista's Winter Shape Up Workout 1

(Get the full workout video + the details here!)

Check out this jogging and walking workout.

A post-workout yoga flow video.

Upper body and core workout.


We’re going to San Diego in a few weeks! The Pilot has to go to SD for a work trip, so naturally, the girls and I are crashing the party. There’s no way we could skip a trip out to see some of our SD friends, enjoy the beach, and swim in some poke bowls, Tiki Port and Better Buzz. I CAN’T WAIT. If anything new has opened up since we left, please let me know! We’ll definitely be hitting up some of the faves on this list, this list, and this list.

La Jolla


First beach day


This Is Us. I’m not going to post spoilers or anything, but the other night, I was standing in front of the TV, hand over my mouth, whispering, “No, no, no, no.”

The show gets into my SOUL every.single.week. Like, I cry every single episode and find myself wondering/worrying about the characters like they’re my real-life friends. (So, I may have a problem. NBD.) Anyone else seriously invested in the show? And don’t worry, you have plenty of time to binge watch all of the episodes on demand before the Feb 4 big show. Ugh, it’s just so good.

This is Us

Photo source

Eats + recipes:

Mushroom hot cacao mix. It’s not too sweet, and while I enjoy it in warm almond milk, I’ve also been loving it in my afternoon smoothies. It gives it a mild cacao taste, and thankfully, no hint of mushroom flavor.


I’ve included a few of the Four Sigmatic products in previous Friday Faves posts (all ordered through Thrive Market), but I think this one may take the cake. 

Ina cake

Speaking of cake, I made this Ina Garten recipe for girls’ night (cooking club!) the other night. I was assigned dessert and wanted to try out a recipe that was entirely new. This cake had glowing five-star reviews, so I had to see if it lived up to the hype.

Ina cake

The frosting was a dream come true, but as far as the cake goes, I think I may have messed something up. The texture was lovely but a little too sponge-y instead of moist (<— least favorite word ever) and fudgy (<— second least favorite word ever).  It was really good, but it wasn’t like omg this is the best cake ever. (And that’s coming from someone who REALLY REALLY LIKES CAKE and adores Ina Garten. I wish we could hang out.) I weighed all of the ingredients and followed the recipe step by step, but it wasn’t perfect, and her recipes usually are, so I’m blaming it on user error. We will try again, cake.

Two more new recipes I made this past week for an event at the Pilot’s work:

These prosciutto tartines (I used homemade sourdough I had in the freezer)


and these brownies.

I don’t want to be one of those people who are like, “I’ll never use boxed mix again” but this kicked boxed mix in the face. (And I really like boxed mix.) So as you can probably see, No Sugar January ended a bit prematurely. I’ve mentioned that we’ve been going through a challenging time around here – it’s not my story to tell, so I won’t be blogging about it. But it’s been a time of tears, overwhelm and learning. Thankfully things have been turning up a little bit – and I’m not going to say that sweet treats are always the answer, but sometimes, you really need a brownie. Or three. I’m still working to really minimize sugar because I feel better when I’m not drowning in it, but will likely be back to my intuitive eating kind of ways.

Good reads:

My friend Julie shared the best news this week. <3

J Lo’s fit tips. 

Becoming a better group fitness instructor. 

Fashion + beauty:

My favorite booties are on super sale! Snag ‘em here. They’re super comfy with just a little bit of height, and they match everything. 

favorite booties

(Found the dress online here and it’s also on sale! I’ve been wearing it so much this winter.)

This contour set. I shouted it out in Friday Faves when I first bought it, and that was when I hadn’t used it much yet. I wanted to report back that I love it. I still don’t really know what I’m doing yet with the whole contour thing – aka expect a makeup tutorial never – but it helps take some of the winter zombie look away. The eyeshadow colors have subtle hints of orange and pink but are still very neutral. 

Hope you have a happy Friday! I’ll see ya on Sunday with Week 3 of the Winter Shape Up. (Don’t forget to enter the Sunbasket giveaway here + the bonus giveaway here.)

Thanks so much for stopping by the blog today.



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  1. Micki on January 26, 2018 at 7:07 am

    Hi Gina,

    I am totally invested in This Is Us too and spent my midnight wake up thinking about them last night! I was bawling on this week’s episode. we totally need a discussion group

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:28 pm

      we do!! i wonder how i can set this up??

  2. Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious on January 26, 2018 at 7:23 am

    My mom keeps saying I need to watch that show but I don’t have the patience to wait week to week.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:28 pm

      you need to binge all the episodes and then watch the one on the 4th!

  3. Cassie on January 26, 2018 at 7:33 am

    Oh my, I did the same thing this week with This Is Us. I immediately wanted to call my mother and talk about it but she hadn’t watched it yet.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:23 pm

      same! i called her and was like “call me back after you watch it”

  4. Stephanie S. on January 26, 2018 at 8:17 am

    Tonight my husband and I are going to see The Post, and tomorrow my mom, sister, and I are going to see Love Never Dies (the sequel to Phantom of the Opera) and then out to dinner – that was our Christmas gift to my mom, and we’re all really excited for it. Hopefully Sunday will be relaxed – this week has been kind of crazy for us, as well, so I feel like I need some time to get caught up on things. And also make a nice dinner for us!

    P is looking so big – and her hair is so long! That picture of the girls is really adorable <3 I'm an episode behind on This Is Us – gotta get caught up!! But yes, I definitely cry during every episode. My husband is always listening for my telltale sniff, haha. I'm loving WSU!!! Thank you so much for putting that together and for everything that goes into it. Have a great weekend!!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:22 pm

      how was it?! that sounds like such a wonderful day <3
      the girls are getting so big. it's crazy! they play together more and more, too, which is a lot of fun to watch 🙂
      so so happy you're enjoying WSU, too!!

      • Stephanie S. on January 29, 2018 at 4:15 pm

        Love Never Dies was really good! It was a great show, really entertaining, the set was incredible – I’d definitely recommend it. I need to listen to the soundtrack more now! It was a great day 🙂

  5. Lori S H on January 26, 2018 at 8:26 am

    What a pretty dress! I just recently noticed that your hair has gotten so long! What’s your secret? It looks fantastic!!

  6. Nicole Kump on January 26, 2018 at 8:52 am

    First off, love the flight suit! Second, I had some free time yesterday during which my internet was actually cooperating so I binged the last three episodes of This Is Us. I gotta say I am so glad I have my own dorm so I can get like a baby in private! I can’t get through a show without crying. Every time! It’s such a good show! Do you watch it solo or does Peta watch it too? I got the hubby to watch it with me but I actually prefer to watch it alone so I can cry with zero judgment haha. Have a great weekend, and thank you again for the care package!! 🙂

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:20 pm

      so so happy it made it there! let me know if you think of any more treats you miss!
      tom watches them with me, thank goodness. even though i try not to cry about it in front of him. i wait until i’m alone to think about jack and process my feelings hahah

      • Nicole Kump on January 28, 2018 at 8:36 am

        I’m expecting the next episode to be rough. I love Jack! Well, I love them all Really! Hope you have a good week! <3

  7. Sue on January 26, 2018 at 9:30 am

    Every week this is us leaves me wanting more! The story line just sucks you in! Can’t wait until feb 4th. Thanks for all you do!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:19 pm

      thank you <3
      and yes! every episode sucks me in. i feel like i could watch it for hours

  8. Milania Dela cruz on January 26, 2018 at 9:39 am

    Omgggg This Is Us!!! I can’t even deal. Each week I need to process it.
    Cute booties!!! This weekend I do one shift at the VA hospital to moonlight so tomorrow is my day… then work out go to ikea and rent movies! Have fun at Jacksonville!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:18 pm

      hope you enjoyed the workout, ikea and movies. that sounds like the best combo

  9. Emily @ Pizza & Pull-Ups on January 26, 2018 at 9:53 am

    I have not seen This Is Us but seems like I need to start watching it. Hope you have a great weekend!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:18 pm

      you would LOVE it

  10. Jennifer on January 26, 2018 at 10:06 am

    Love the flight suit and the tutu! So adorable.

    I hope things mellow out for you- but hey sometimes you need brownies right?

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:17 pm

      amen to that <3

  11. Jen on January 26, 2018 at 10:29 am

    Sending your family so much love Gina. xo

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:17 pm

      thank you, sweet friend

  12. Hillary on January 26, 2018 at 10:45 am

    Yes, totally invested in TIU — greatest show to hit TV! #waterworks

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:17 pm

      totally agree. every episode makes me feel like i watched the most beautiful movie

  13. Fiona @ Get Fit Fiona on January 26, 2018 at 11:57 am

    I totally got sucked into This Is Us on Netflix. While I haven’t been very good at watching the newest season on TV, I have watched the last few episodes. I’m seriously looking forward to the episode after the Super Bowl.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:17 pm

      it’s going to be so heartbreaking and intense. AHH

  14. VR on January 26, 2018 at 12:29 pm

    Your daughters are growing up so fast! They’re beautiful 😀

    Yes I am definitely emotionally invested in the characters of This Is Us. 🙁 I don’t think I am going to like what’s coming up in the next few episodes, my heart feels sad.

    That cake looks great! I do not like the word Fudgy as well.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:16 pm

      thank you so much!
      yes! i feel like i know them and find myself randomly wondering about them haha
      hope you’re enjoying the weekend!

  15. Grace on January 26, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    Love those booties. Maybe they will restock the grey color in my size. I do have to say that the JLo fit tips are very click baity and the epitome of dangerous diet culture. She considers working out a “job” and follows an insanely rigid diet. That sounds miserable. Homegirl looks great, but growing older and having a changing body is inevitable. If you want to look 30 forever you’re in for a very frustrating life.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:15 pm

      i totally see where you’re coming from. at the same time, i appreciate the fact that she says she works extremely hard to be “j lo” and everything involved with that. it’s kind of refreshing to hear celebrities say they work hard to stay in shape because a lot of models and celebs are like, “oh it’s just genetics and i don’t workout and just eat cheeseburgers all day.”

  16. Lauren on January 26, 2018 at 2:00 pm

    This Is Us is such an amazing show, and I don’t know how I’ll work on February 5th, feeling like I’ve lost a member of my family!!! In other news, I was SO excited to hear about Julie’s pregnancy!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:13 pm

      i seriously wonder how many people will call in sick on the 5th
      and same!! it made my heart so happy <3

  17. angie on January 26, 2018 at 2:12 pm

    YESSSS i am soo excited for you guys to come visit SD 😀 You have to try Lil Farmers Cafe on Garnet 😀 I love their falafel bowl but with chicken 😀
    How long will guys be in town?

    This is Us is definitely Top Notch of shows. I am sooo invested in it. I am sooo dreading seeing Jack die..He is my fave character. I havent seen this weeks episode yet either. i planned to watch it tonight.

    Super excited for Julie too!!!
    That flight suit on P 😀 sooo cute!!!

    • angie on January 26, 2018 at 2:14 pm

      By the way, i finally tried GOAT cheese and LOVEEEEEE IT!! SOO obsessed. I made a recreation of the Portobello and asparagus salad from BJ’s and used goat cheese. Sooo amazing and soft. melts in your melt.

      • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:12 pm

        what an awesome idea! i LOVE that salad

        • angie on January 27, 2018 at 11:46 pm

          For the balsamic dressing I used the Bolthouse Farms creamy balsamic dressing…soooo good

    • Juliana on January 26, 2018 at 4:22 pm

      Is this place new? I must go here!

      • angie on January 27, 2018 at 11:45 pm

        Lil Farmers cafe not sure. i know theres one on Garnet/cass st and one in Kearny Mesa across the street from In-n-out. Its soooo good. The prices are great too.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:13 pm

      we will definitely check that out- thank you!
      and totally agree. i love jack so much and will be super sad probably all week that week.

  18. Tracy on January 26, 2018 at 3:36 pm

    This Is Us. No words. Every episode takes so much out of me!

    The dress is darling! There’s no link? The “on sale” link takes me to a page without the dress. I’m very interested!

    Hope things keep heading up for you! This to shall pass. Hang in there.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:12 pm

      i feel like i need a therapy session after each episode haha
      i just updated the link, too. here it is:
      thank you for the kind words, too. i appreciate it so much <3

  19. Juliana on January 26, 2018 at 4:21 pm

    Was the poke place in Liberty Station open the last time you were here? It’s right across from Tender Greens and I literally never noticed it until one day TG was too crowded and I looked in a different direction (I know, tunnel vision). If not it’s worth checking out! Also there’s a new noodle bar in Coronado that just opened, I haven’t been yet but I’ve heard great things!

    • Juliana on January 26, 2018 at 4:23 pm

      Oh the place on Coronado is Westpac Noodle Bar. Whoops!

      • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:09 pm

        AHHH we will look for it!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:10 pm

      no, it opened like a few months after we left and i was like NOOOOO
      we are definitely going to try it!

  20. Jennifer M on January 26, 2018 at 7:55 pm

    I asked my husband to watch the next one with me so he could hold my hand. He told me that show is too much drama. Men! Guess I’ll be crying on the couch by myself.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:09 pm

      ahhhh! i couldn’t watch it alone

  21. Pamela Stewart on January 27, 2018 at 6:48 pm

    I LOVE the dress and shoes!!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2018 at 11:08 pm

      thank you! <3

  22. Catrina on January 30, 2018 at 1:26 pm

    If you’re in OB you should checkout TapShack Kombucha Bar! They have Kombucha, Cold Brew and Ginger Beer on tap, feel like it might be up your alley!

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