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xoxo, Kerri O.

What I Did Over Summer Vacation

Long time no update! A few of you have noticed my absence, so I thought I'd explain. Can you imagine not being able to use your phone for almost 6 months?? Well, that's where I've been...

Odd as it may sound, I'm touch typing this with the screen off and plan to edit it in short sessions. You see, I've been completely off my blog and social media for about 6 months. I haven't been able to use my phone at all. I also have not been able to text, email, blog, facebook, watch Netflix with my kids...anything involving a screen really. I had to take a break. A long one. Not because I wanted to, but because I had to. I've been dealing with some super weird health problems. A severe case of something called Neuro-Ocular Vestibular Dysfunction (NOVD) or "See Sick Syndrome" to be exact. Basically, my vestibular system is completely on the fritz and not communicating properly. Weird stuff makes me feel completely sea sick and I often go into dizzy spells so severe I can't do anything but go to bed, close my eyes, and pray for them to go away. Besides screens, the weirdest things can be a problem. LED lights, patterns, movement, the trees on a windy day, things that spin, etc etc. 

It started slowly. Over years. By the time we finally got figured out what it was it was so severe I was popping Dramamine like tic tacs and it felt completely debilitating. Like I said, I couldn't be on my phone at all and realized just how much of my life revolved around that thing. My social life, my work. Shopping and communication. I had to have my husband text people and check my emails. I was right in the middle of preparing to launch a new keto food blog and cooking show and had to just stop. With FitViews I've had to completely stop any work. I've had to ignore tons of pitches and offers of sponsored work and collabs. 

It's been rough. The worst has been the isolation I've felt and the complete inability to work. 

So, anyway, I've been doing exercises(this is a pdf all about See Sick Syndrome and the exercises if you're interested) to help correct it, and am beginning to feel better. I still cannot do much on my phone, but I can do a little. 

I'm allowing myself one instagram post a day currently (which also goes to my facebook). I check my emails very occasionally and have my husband do everything else still. I can't watch a movie or YouTube or anything like that yet, but windy days don't send me running to my room with the shades drawn, so I'm grateful to be progressing. Though, slowly. I'd love to get back to YouTube and IG Stories, but just can't deal with video at all yet-too much  movement. Especially when trying to edit a YouTube video. Hopefully soon though. Until then, I'm keeping myself to IG, this blog (because I can do the bulk of the work with the screen off), and a little Twitter. I've also decided to no longer do one-off sponsored content or freebies/pr copies etc. This was in the works already. I was only accepting very little sponsored content the last few years. I will still accept more long-term partnerships, but I just don't see the value of putting the effort in the one-off stuff with the way I have to limit my screen time right now. I am however going to increase my blogging, so in the hopes of paying the fees and things it takes to keep a blog running, I have decided to still affiliate link on FitViews (see disclaimer at the top of this blog) and use my Amazon Influencer page

I'm getting better, but it will be a slow road. 

I've also had people asking for an update on my last post 165 by June 25 and wanted to do that here as well.

So, the weight loss...

Well, basically when I started getting nauseous and dizzy from any time spent on my phone I had to quit tracking on MFP and was pretty lost for a while. I tried just eating what I thought was about right for portions, calories, etc and that went over like a lead balloon. In fact, I gained a couple pounds by the beginning of June. As much as I want to be one of those people that can watch portions and lose weight: I'm not. I need to track when I'm trying to lose weight. I decided I had to find another way to track if I was going to get this figured out, and went back to an old school journal. I started using a Diet Minder. I actually really like it. It's worked well for me the last few months. 

I didn't do the Body By Science program all the way through. With everything else I was dealing with I just decided to stop. Instead I did daily long walks with my husband. I did 4 to 6 miles every day all summer long (with the occasional rest day, but not weekly).

So, tracking back in full force, and optimizing the ketogenic diet with what I've learned over the years, I lost 9 pounds in June. After that I slacked off a bit on tracking calories again and my rate of loss of course slowed down. I lost 6 pounds July, August, and September total. So, 2 pounds a month. 

All in all I got in a pretty good groove for the summer with consistency and though my rate of loss was less than I'd like it was a move in the right direction. I really feel like June showed me exactly where I need to be with this. That's a lot in one month for me.

Now that I'm starting to feel better I'm ready to get back to some more intense workouts and shake up things a bit. I just got this book...

and this too...

and am thinking of dabbling in a little at-home crossfit-type workouts. I want to get back in a groove with running too, but with colder mornings coming on I think indoor workouts are my best move. Being completely honest with myself I know I won't get out in sub zero temps for a run. I hope to keep my walks up in the afternoons as well and transition back to running by spring. We'll see...

I'm not setting any hard goals. I am focused on improving my overall health and optimizing keto to get the rest of this weight off!

I'll keep you posted...

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KETO Cocktails: The Lemon Drop

I love a good glass of red wine now and then, I mean it's practically a health food, right? ;) But sometimes I just want a cocktail. I'm all for moderation and having a drink now and then, but I'm just not down with the calorie, carb, and sugar counts of some of my favorites. Seriously, have you ever looked them up? Eek. So, I've set to work at converting my favorite cocktail recipes to be more keto diet friendly!

The first cocktail recipe I'm tackling is the lemon drop. I used to love these, but haven't had one in years because of the sugar in them. In my early twenties I had a friend who used to make them for me all the time. We would have a shaker full of these, a good dinner, and a chick flick on a weeknight, it was kind of bliss. Her recipe called for so. much. SUGAR though! Looking back I think she may have used a wee bit more sugar than most, but they were really good.

I think my keto-ized recipe comes pretty dang close to those delicious memories! It'…

30 Easy Prep and Pack Whole30 Lunch Recipes

The Whole30Program is amazing. I highly recommend it. Every time I've done a Whole 30 I have felt AMAZING by the end. It's a very empowering experience. It is not however an easy one. Mostly because the food prep can take much more time if you're used to grab and go options. A little planning ahead and you can definitely make it through the 30 days.

When it comes to Whole30 lunches, 3 things worked best for me:

Quick and easy salads.Prepping food on Sunday.Cooking too much at dinner and eating leftovers for lunch the next day.
I thought I'd share 30 of the awesome Whole30 lunch recipes I've found from my favorite bloggers (and a few from me!). I've included all three options I listed above. Some quick and easy salads, some to prep an entire recipe on the weekend and then portion them for lunches that week, and some to be cooked for dinner and the leftovers packed for lunch the next day. Play around and see what works best for you.

This list of 30 Whole30 Lunch Reci…

Keto Paleo Friendly Coffee Creamer Recipe

Going keto paleo has me missing one thing: the organic grass-fed half-and-half I'd been having in my coffee. Since going paleo over a year ago I've searched and searched and just never found anything else I love in my coffee. I'd just about given up on a keto paleo-friendly coffee creamer!

I was almost to resign myself to black coffee forever, but then I decided to resort again to trying to make my own. This version is simple and quite delicious. Not only is it keto paleo, but Whole30 and 21 Day Sugar Detox friendly as well.

Keto Paleo Cinnamon Vanilla Coffee Creamer
1 can Organic Canned Coconut Milk(the kind in the carton just won't do it)
1 teaspoon Cinnamon Vietnamese Organic
1 teaspoon Organic Pure Vanilla for 100% Whole30 compliant swap for vanilla powder
2 teaspoons raw local honey or Organic Maple Syrup (optional, leave out for KETO, Whole30, or 21DSD)

Blend all ingredients well in your blender. Store in the refrigerator (the cinnamon tends to set…

Easy Paleo Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Growing up the only encounter I had with sweet potatoes was at Thanksgiving dinner. I hesitate to even call them sweet potatoes though. They were more like sugar coated sugar, with a side of sugar. Seriously!
The recipe was to coat a baking dish in margarine, add diced sweet potatoes, top with more margarine and a healthy heaping of brown sugar. Bake. And then? At the end you top the whole thing with a bag of marshmallows and bake again.
Blech! Needless to say I was never fond of sweet potatoes.
When I first went paleo I decided to reacquaint myself with sweet potatoes. They’re a great paleo-friendly carb source. I must confess the thought made me shudder, but I persevered. I tried them simple. Baked. I was so shocked. They're so good!
Now, I love sweet potatoes. They’re a go-to side dish for family dinners. Not only are they delicious, but they’re good for us and easy to make. The funny thing about sweet potatoes is they taste amazing all on their own. When it comes to sweet potato r…

Jillian Michaels BodyShred Full Review

I have to say my two months of BodyShred flew by! It seems like I just started yesterday. Ah, time flies while you're having fun. Right? OK, in this full review post, I hope to give you a good overview of exactly what the BodyShred program is as well as my thoughts and opinions on the program. So, is Jillian Michaels BodyShred hype or help? Let's chat...

Jillian Michaels BODYSHRED is Jillian's latest total-package fitness program. This set includes:

What's in the box:BodyShred Fitness Guide
BodyShred Meal Plan
BodyShred Rotational Calendar
BodyShred "Let Them See You Sweat" Workout Towel
     8 - Shred Style Circuit Workouts
       1. Launch
       2. Rise
       3. Amplify
       4. Escalate
       5. Conquer
       6. Triumph 
       7. Zenith
       8. Apex
     2 - Straight Cardio Workouts
       1. Fire Up
       2. Ignite
    Plus, bonus workout Opus and a disc on the cast and teaching the moves. So, a total of 12 DVDs are included in this set.

The BodyShred Workouts

Paleo Smoky Grilled Pineapple Burgers

Since going Paleo my family has fallen even more in love with our grill. Paleo and grilling just work well together. The past couple of years I've even been stepping outside my grilling comfort zone more and more. Grilling things I'd never thought to have grilled before and trying new flavor combinations. I have to say I'm pretty thrilled with the results of most of my flavor experiments. 

In the past I'd never have thought to grill fruit, but it's amazing. Grilling fruit and adding it to traditionally savory dishes? Brilliant.

Oh yes, and? New rule: every burger recipe for the rest of forever must contain grilled pineapple. OK, maybe more of a guideline. It's a seriously delicious combination though.

This Smoky Grilled Pineapple Burger is always a crowd-pleaser at my house. It's not only Paleo, but Whole30, glutenfree, lower carb, and clean eating friendly. I promise you won't miss the bun! 

paleo, grilled pineapple burger, smoky grilled pineapple burger,…

Paleo Peppermint Mocha Coffee Creamer Recipe

It's just not the holidays for me without a Starbucks peppermint mocha (or white chocolate peppermint mocha, mmm). I generally splurge once or twice during the holiday season with the real thing. Since going keto paleo, however, I'm not sure if I will. Sometimes the sugar just isn't worth it!

Problem is I like them, miss them, and would really enjoy them all season long!
So..... I decided I wanted to tackle the peppermint mocha and come up with Paleo-friendly version. With this simple recipe, I can have a peppermint mocha anytime.

Not only is this recipe Paleo, but it's also Whole30, gluten-free, vegan, primal, and 100% junk-free. Paleo Peppermint Mocha RecipeIngredients:
1 can Organic Canned Coconut Milk(Regular, NOT light. Seriously, ew.)
1/3 cup Organic Cocoa Powder
2 to 3 Tablespoons Organic Grade B Maple Syrup (Optional, leave out for keto or Whole30.)
1/2 to 1 teaspoon Organic Peppermint Extract(Depending how pepperminty you like it. I do 1/2 teaspoon)
1 teaspoon Organic …

KETO Hot Cocoa Pancakes

OK, I know I've been on quite the low carb pancake tangent lately, but THESE! Seriously, these are yummtastic. Yummazing? Ya, they're really good. They just might be my favorite recipe I've ever done. Ever. OK, that might be my paleo apple crisp recipe, but that's not low, I wonder if I could tweak that low carb...

That would be brilliant!

You know, bloggers area always talking seo this and seo that (seo stands for search engine optimization if you're not a blogger) and I'm just over here yammering. I'm pretty sure when google's spider crawlers (anyone shiver at that word picture? eesh) get to FitViews they just think, "Yeesh, move along. Nothing to see here." Ha ha ha!

Anyway, pancakes. KETO Hot Cocoa Low Carb Pancakes no less. So good. 

As I've mentioned before I'm back to low carb (keto actually) and developing new recipes to make it easier to stick with. I find I just plain feel great when I eat ketogenic, and I definitely h…

Paleo Spaghetti and Meat Sauce

Have you ever blown up a spaghetti squash in the microwave? I have. Multiple times. I don't recommend it. It's quite the mess to clean up. And the noise? Will likely make you jump.
I kept seeing people say to just cook the whole spaghetti squash in the microwave. Don't bother cutting it, they said, it's so quick and easy, they raved. 
Ya, no. I blow it up.
So. You've been warned. If you do dare to put the thing whole in your microwave, at least make sure you have the camera set up...
Oh, and maybe poke a "vent" hole in it very carefully with a knife.
Paleo (Whole30) Spaghetti with Meat Sauce:

Ingredients1 spaghetti squash
2 lbs lean grass-fed ground beef
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 (14.5 oz) can organic fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1 (6 oz) can organic tomato paste
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 teaspoons Himalayan pink salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons organic basil
2 teaspoons organic oregano
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon organic granulated garlic


Hype or Help: Jillian Michaels Body Revolution Final Program Review

*This post contains affiliate links. I make a small commission if you purchase items by clicking these links. It costs you no more.
Disclaimer: I received Jillian Michaels Body Revolutionfor review purposes. As always opinions are 100% honest and my own.

After three long months of testing this program I'm finally down to the review! I've had so many questions, and I hope to answer them all here.
So, is it hype or help? Have a seat, let's talk about that...

What you will need for these workouts:
A set of light, medium, and heavy hand weights to suit your ability level.

What's Included with Jillian Michaels Body Revolution: 15 Workout DVDsResistance CableFitness Guide BookFat Burning Meal Plan7 Day Kick-Start Your Metabolism Plan90 Day JournalBookmark
What's in the box? My unboxing video if you want to see it all:
The Body Revolution Diet Plan I've had a lot of questions on what exactly the diet plan for Body Revolution is. Let me break it down... The diet for this program…