Over the past two and a half years, I’ve lost weight. I’ve gone from the biggest I’ve ever been (size 28) to the smallest I’ve ever been (size 18).
So many of you were inspired by my Quinoa for Breakfast post, I thought I’d bring you a new healthy breakfast option, brown rice for breakfast!
Why Brown Rice?
Worlds Healthiest Foods sums it up well: The health benefits of brown rice continue with its fiber, which has been shown to reduce high cholesterol levels, one more way brown rice helps prevent atherosclerosis. Fiber also helps out by keeping blood sugar levels under control (PCOS girls, take note!)
I am obsessed with this recipe because it’s super easy, customizable and delicious. For me, the toasted sesame oil is the secret flavor here, but I’ll let you try it out and decide for yourself.
I’ll give you the rundown of how I made my brown rice breakfast bowl and I’ve got a few additional tips for you down below!
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced, plus more for garnish
- 8 ounces curly spinach, stemmed (8 packed cups)
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds, plus more for garnish (I didn’t have sesame seeds, so I added sunflower seeds for crunch)
- 4 cups cooked brown rice, warm
- 1 avocado, thinly sliced
- 4 radishes, thinly sliced
Cook the scallions in a large skillet over medium, add the spinach, salt, and pepper and cook just until wilted, about 1 minute. Note: I cooked my brown rice ahead of time, so I warmed it up in the skillet during this step.
Whisk the oil, vinegar, and sesame seeds in a small bowl. I didn’t have sesame seeds so I used sunflower seeds.
Slice radishes and avocado, thinly
Divide the brown rice, spinach mixture, avocado, and radishes in the bowls. Garnish with scallions and sesame seeds. Drizzle with the sesame dressing and serve warm, with more dressing on the side.
Top with a fried egg for protein!
Additional Tips: If you want to save time, make a pot of brown rice the night before and reheat once the other ingredients are ready. If you’re making this for one or two people, you could also get frozen brown rice from your grocery store, I like frozen brown rice because it has smaller portions and cooks in a few minutes.
You can also, try other green vegetables in your bowl: Broccoli, zucchini, and Swiss chard all work well.
Is this something you would eat? If you try this recipe be sure to tag me on instagram @CeCeOlisa
Modified from a Real Simple recipe
It’s pretty exciting to watch my internet friends do amazing things.
It’s even more exciting when they ask me to be a part of it.
Kelsey Miller has just released a book called, “Big Girl: How I Gave Up Dieting and Got a Life” and I am so incredibly proud of her. I’ve read the book and it is so open and honest… I feel like there’s a little piece of all of us inside of her storytelling.
If you don’t know Kelsey, she’s the creator of the Anti-Diet project on Refinery29. She’s been super supportive of me in countless ways, so when she asked if I would be a speaker on a body image panel during her book launch, I immediately said yes.
Check out my video recap below and order “Big Girl” here
Kelsey hand-selcted four powerful female voices from around the internet…
From left to right:
- Jessamyn Stanley, known for her body positive yoga instagram account
- Me, hi!
- Tess Holiday, plus size model and internet breaker
- Jordan Younger, author of “Breaking Vegan“
What I wore…
The Woman of the Hour…
Kelsey is the best! Soon after joining the staff of Refinery29, she created The Anti-Diet Project, one of the website’s most popular franchises. She is currently a Senior Features Writer and lives in Brooklyn.
The Conversation (Video Recap)…
If you’d like me to come speak at your school, sorority, event, etc. click here to contact me!
If I were the type of person who said things like “This is gonna be my year!” I would have said it on January 1, 2015. But I’m not that kind of person, so I just giddily looked ahead. I was confident that at the end of 2015 I would love myself and my life in a completely different way than I did in 2014.
Welp– I can confidently say that I was right, but… um… my version of 2015 was all roses and what really happened was roses and thorns… lots of thorns (shout out to Brett Michaels, you called it bro).
Loving yourself and living a life you love are beautiful goals. The results are always worth it, but what it takes? Noooo… I wasn’t ready!!!!!!!
Anyway, here are a few crazy ways that I loved myself in 2015, in no particular order…
I Quit My Job
For a long time, I had this blog, my YouTube channel, #PSPfit, friends, family, a boo thang and a full-time job. For about two years I’d work nights and weekends on my passions and then spend Monday-Friday, 9-5 sitting at my day job with my stomach in knots. I had great co-workers and an awesome work environment, but I knew I wasn’t doing what I was supposed to do.
A year ago this week I said good-bye my corporate job, my paid vacation and my guaranteed paycheck (!) so that I could go “all in” with the work I do online.
From the moment I moved to NYC, I’d been working for the validation of other people. I’d been hoping and praying for someone to take a chance on me, to choose me, to pick me out from a crowd and say wow that girl has something.
This time, I did that.
I chose me.
I bet on me.
I decided that a steady paycheck was good, but what I had to offer the world was more valuable than a consistent direct deposit.
For the full story of how I quit my job click here
I Stopped Dating Robert
Yes, your girl is back on the market.
Shout out to those of you who figured it out on social media (some of ya’ll don’t miss a beat, sheesh!), Anyway– I’m sorry I ignored your questions– I just wasn’t in the mood to discuss it.
I only have good things to say about Robert and the time I spent with him. Ending things was pretty simple: I needed more than Robert could give me, so it was up to me to tap out.
But here’s the deal– It took me a LONG TIME to get up the courage to call things off.
As women, we talk a lot about finding love/relationships but not a lot about losing love/relationships, so I will definitely be digging more into this topic; but for now, I’ll say that ending a relationship that isn’t serving you is a huge act of self love (especially if the person is awesome, augh!). If you’ve done it, I am giving you the biggest hug and high five. If you know you need to do it, I’m telling you now that it’s painful and annoying, but the life and love you deserve are on the other side, I promise.
I Started Therapy
I’ve always been curious about therapy. I didn’t have a particular reason to go, but once I started? Oh Em Gee! There’s so much to unpack!! It’s been really helpful to explore why I struggle with certain things or why I have certain patterns in relationships with friends and dating. It took me a few tries to find the right therapist for me, but now that I’ve found a good fit I look forward to exploring myself each week and growing up a bit.
Therapy is like the gym… for your heart and soul! #PSPfit
If you’re curious about therapy, I highly recommend InYourCornerOnline.com it’s skype Therapy so you can choose people who specialize in what you need help with and you can do your sessions from anywhere!
I Helped Others
Do you Remember “Dear CeCe: I’m Single, What am I Doing Wrong??” Well, in that post I broke down how to find purpose in your single life.
Not dating Robert anymore meant that suddenly our standing date nights were open on my calendar. I could have “started wearing less and going out more” on those days, but I didn’t.
Okay– I kinda did…
But I ALSO made sure to walk in my purpose and find ways to help people. Instead of having a date night with Robert every Tuesday, I started #PSPfit WERKshop, a Tuesday night workout class for my NYC readers and it was amazing!
The girls that showed up were so beautiful and positive– they had no idea they were helping me through an awkward time in my life. I taught them workouts and they taught me that when you have a purpose, you can fill any void in your life.
I Looked Up, Waaaaaay Up!
*some say Universe, I say God (or Jesusssss *praise break*)
I set out to love myself more in 2015 and I was thinking like massages, manicures and two piece bathing suits in Jamaica would cover it. Little did I know that there were deeper lessons God had on deck for me in 2015.
A huge part of loving myself is my relationship with God. I could preach to you and say we are fearfully and wonderfully made… but instead I’ll just say, God don’t make no junk. God wants the best for me and is always looking out for my best interest even when it doesn’t feel good. Some amazing reminders of this have come from the following religious and non-religious places, No matter what your beliefs are, I think you can find some great inspiration with:
The Alchemist, a Life changing book
Jesus Calling a quick daily devotional that is so beautiful and speaks to my soul every day. It’s basically 365 days of love.
Intentional I think I listened to this song for like three days straight
Keep on Singing My Song Christina at her best singing from the depths of her soul, yes LORD! Lyrics include:
‘Cause I’m about to
Say farewell to every single lie
& All the fears I’ve held too long inside
Every time I felt I couldn’t cry
All the negativity I had inside
For too long I’ve been struggling. I couldn’t go on
But now I’ve found I’m feeling strong and moving on
I Stopped Being Mean to Myself
During all of these wacky loving myself moments, I was still dealing with a multitude of other personal issues, the stress that came in my first year of working for myself aaaand I was signing with a literary agent, starting the process of publishing a book, launching the first ever conference for women size 10+, theCURVYcon, etc. etc.
See, soooo many roses <3
So, instead of knocking out these last few pounds I wanted to drop, I’ve been holding on for dear life to maintain.
I’m nowhere near my starting weight and my body is still operating in the benefits of having lost dozens of pounds, thank God. But instead of hitting my personal goal scale-wise in 2015, I’ve been gaining and losing the same 10 pounds.
For a minute there I was so mean to myself. Everytime I posted an outfit picture, I’d harshly criticize it and tell myself I should be way farther along.
But, I work hard to love myself.
Right now loving myself means that I do the best that I can in a year of transition.
This year, the best that I can do is: following my dreams, letting go of things that weren’t right for me, healing emotional wounds, starting new projects and helping others along the way. Even though changing numbers on the scale didn’t make the cut, I’d still say that 2015 wasn’t too shabby.
Anyway, I often get emails asking How do I Love Myself? Here’s a snapshot of what it looked like for me– I always keep it real with you and this post is no different. All the beautiful rosey things you see me doing are rooted in making decisions out of love for myself (even when they weren’t fun decisions).
I’m grateful for all of it *sigh*
Do you have some “love yourself” tough decisions to make?
Guess who did her first 5K last weekend…? This girl!!
A big part of being able to do a 5K is me taking special care of my knees. Be sure to download the free “How to Get Fit with Bad Knees” videos.
Here’s the story of how I ended up doing it and five tips being plus size and doing a 5K as a Plus Size Princess. (press play to watch me run)
A video posted by CeCe Olisa (PlusSizePrincess) (@ceceolisa) on
I don’t particularly love running, but I work on my running so that I can have a workout in my back pocket that I can do anytime, anyplace *Janet Jackson voice*.
So, even though I’ve been training and working my way up to a 5K, I didn’t actually have a date, time or place for actually doing a 5K race. So, when my friends sent me a text basically saying “Hey girl, we’re doing a 5K this Saturday #PSPfit, right?” I couldn’t say no.
We did the Kevin Hart #runwithhart 5K in Philadelphia. The best part is how supportive my friends were.
(press play to watch Floyd, the number one #PSPfit supporter in the tri-state area lol. )
A video posted by CeCe Olisa (PlusSizePrincess) (@ceceolisa) on
What is a 5K?
A 5K run is 3.1 miles. It’s actually the recommended “beginner’s run” distance, so don’t let the “5K” title intimidate you.
How Should I Train for a 5K?
I used the Couch to 5K training app, I can’t remember if I did a free or paid version. The app plays over whatever music you’re listening to and basically tells you when to walk or run. You start out running for 15 seconds or so and within weeks you’re running at five minute intervals. It’s cool to see how your body gets used to it!
How long Should I Train for a 5K?
I technically am not done training for my 5K, but I did it anyway because the race we signed up for encouraged all levels and walking too. So, sign up for one that’s supportive and when the date comes just do your best. I actually let my couch to 5K app guide me for the first part of the race, then I did my own intervals for the second half. I definitely didn’t run consistently the whole way, but I ran more than I ever have in my entire life.
What Should I Wear for a 5K?
Wear clothes that won’t move. You don’t want to be tugging on shorts or worrying about a shirt riding up. Make sure you have deep pockets or pockets with a zipper so your phone/keys don’t go flying out. Wear shoes you’ve been running in for a while already. Wear deodorant lol.
Am I ready to do a 5K?
In my opinion, if you have the desire to do a 5K then that makes you ready! Again, you can walk if you need to but it’s nice to have something to train for. Just run it by your doctor and then get moving! If you’d like a boost with the free “How to Get Fit with Bad Knees” videos, click the button below to grab them
Thanks to my friend Jasmine for pushing me to do this, can’t wait for the next one!
Thank you so much to everyone who participated in the #PSPfit #LiviLaunch party this weekend at their local Lane Bryant store, I’m working on an event recap now… stay tuned! Now for today’s post:
Every few weeks an unfamiliar face will approach me at the gym. The conversation usually goes something like this,
Them: Hi! So, I just wanted to come over and tell you what an amazing job you’re doing. Keep it up, okay? You’ll get there!
Me: Ummm…okay, thanks!
You see, I am a super-active girl who enjoys dancing, sports, and various bootcamps. I am also plus-size. Most of the regulars at my gym know that I’m the plus-size girl who works out like a beast, so they let me do my thing. But, the people who have recently joined the gym treat me like I’m a walking “before” picture from an episode of The Biggest Loser. But some of us are fat — and fit.
One thing big girls often hear is something to the tune of, “you need to get healthy and lose weight.” It’s usually said as one word: “gethealthyandloseweight.” Statements like this make the assumption that fat and fit are mutually exclusive. They are not. Statements like this make the assumption that skinny and healthy are synonymous. They are not. There are skinny people who have heart attacks, high blood pressure and diabetes. There are fat people who run 5K races, avoid junk food, and get clean bills of health from their doctors.
When I began the healthy curves journey that I call #PSPfit, Plus Size Princess Fitness. I set three goals for myself: eat clean, train dirty, and love myself at any size. I had been working hard to be the skinniest version of myself since I was 12 years old (spoiler alert: I gained more weight than I ever lost), so my commitment to those three things completely changed my mindset and I set out to be the healthiest version of myself.
I was already in the gym four times a week, so that was an easy habit to keep, but I amped up my workouts by adding intense cardio and tons of strength training. Then, I put on an apron and got cooking to ensure processed foods were eliminated from my diet. I also made regular mani/pedi appointments and went shopping for cute plus-size gym clothes (Yep, I took the “love myself” partvery seriously).
My health began to improve in unexpected ways: My skin cleared up, my period became more regular, my eczema went away, my sleep improved, and my energy skyrocketed. Oh, and I lost 55 pounds.
Sure, weight loss was a part of my health improvements, but here’s the thing: In the past, I’ve lost more than 80 pounds and still had bad skin, annoying eczema, and terrible sleep patterns. So, weight isn’t everything. It’s certainly something, but it’s not everything.
I can do jumping jacks, pushups, planks, side planks, swim laps, and keep up in bootcamp classes galore. I eat green smoothies and cook yummy, clean recipes. I life a fit lifestyle, I’ve shed dozens of pounds, and I’m still a big girl. Even though the numbers on the scale continue to slide down, I’m pretty sure that I’ll always be a big girl. So, what does that mean? Is being fit what you look like, or how you live? Is it what size you wear, or what you can do in the gym?
I’m starting to realize that a healthy, fit lifestyle will enable my body to find the appropriate weight for my optimal health. Being healthy and fit is about choices and I’m making good ones. So, the next time a newbie at the gym assures me that I’ll “get there,” I can remind myself that I am already.
Read more of my articles for Refinery29 here
I hope you’re all feeling as pumped as I am for what’s ahead in 2015! There is so much potential in the air, I can feel it…. We’re doing a #PSPfit January Challenge and our theme is Body Love. We’re going to work with a professional Nutrition Coach, cook clean recipes and exercise out of love for our bodies, not hate.
Registration is open from January 1-January 15th, but you know I can’t wait till then to get moving, so I’ve got a New Years work out for us. Do this workout as many times as you want 🙂 Details on my Livi Active Gym Clothes below!
Someone said “Bang Bang” “Bang Bang” by Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj is the new “Lady Marmelade” circa 2004. Lady Marmelade was pretty epic, but “Bang Bang” has definitely been on my workout playlist for a while now. This week, I linked up with trainer, Ashley Fettig to create another One Song Workout for us to “Bang Bang”!
We thought we’d found a secluded corner of the park to make this little video, but then a wedding party showed up and started watching us… I kept going but I was so nervous to have them watching. I assumed they were judging like “why is that big girl working out in front of a camera??” but to my surprise they were totally into it… you can even hear them cheering at the end!
You can workout with me using the video below. Rewind it and do the routine a few times for a longer workout or click here to get some plus size fitness technique tips from Ashley so that we do this plus size workout video with good form!
Last weekend during our #PSPfit Team NYC workout, we learned the “Come Get it Bae” workout before we started training, it was fun to do the dance all together and to know that my #PSPfit girls who don’t live in NYC are doing it too (if you make a video of yourself, tag me and #PSPfit so we can all cheer you on!
Don’t wait on your weight to live a Healthy & Happy Life!
Question: Is the idea of “weight loss” a bad thing to you?
Here’s why I’m asking: last weekend I posted this photo on Instagram…
Someone left a comment saying You can HAVE what ever desert you want. It’s the desert you prefer or should eat.
A few days later, someone on Facebook asked me why my “Plus Size Fitness: How to do a Push-Up” post had the words “weight loss” in the link description. I answered saying that we’re all on different journeys and I want never want to exclude anyone, but I felt like my answer wasn’t enough.
I think we all know the ugly side of diet culture. I know what its like to be the youngest girl at weight watchers meetings. I know what its like to be given unsolicited diet advice from strangers. I know what its like to deprive myself, obsess over the scale and still feel like I’m failing. I can confidently say that dieting and engaging with my body in a negative way has never done me any good. That’s what’s so amazing to me about being body positive. Shifting my goals from “get skinny” to “get healthy” was the most liberating decision I could have made. I finally understand that the most valuable results I can strive for are health related, not scale related.
#PSPfit is a space that is inclusive to any healthy curves journey. Most of us have been judged for not being thin, so maybe we should be careful not to become judge of women for their health goals, whatever that may be.
Maybe words like “Have” and “Weight Loss” are triggers for those of us who have been bruised by diet culture but as I celebrate Healthy Curves at Every Size, those words don’t have power over me anymore. I know that I will always be a big girl, but I also know that my PCOS becomes more manageable when I shed a few pounds *shrugs*
At this point I can understand that “Lose Weight” doesn’t mean “Get Skinny”. I can say I “can’t have” chocolate cake and know that what I’m really saying is “chocolate cake is not supportive to my body right now” and I think its okay to say things like that.
I am body positive, I love myself and I love my body at any size but sometimes I need structure. Sometimes I need to challenge myself to fill up on yummy healthy hearty foods so that I don’t even consider eating something that’s made in a factory and comes out of a crinkly bag. That’s why we’re starting another #PSPfit online bootcamp next week, because remembering how much my body loves clean eating will help me to make better choices during the holiday season.
I think part of being being body positive is loving your body through working out and eating healthy. Sometimes that means saying no to indulgent foods and sometimes your body sheds a little weight too… but that’s just me!
In July I went to the see Beyonce and her Hubby for the On the Run tour with some girlfriends. Everyone was going crazy, singing along and throwing up that dynasty sign, and I was standing there looking at Bey and thinking… I gotta start training harder in the gym.
While Bey’s body is banging, her figure wasn’t what inspired me– her stamina did. She’s a young mom with a demanding career and family and she’s physically able to tear up the stage for hours that’s fitness to me. I want to be able to tackle my life and have a little energy left to spare. I want to be agile and flexible… basically I dont want my body to fall apart.
In that moment Beyonce randomly motivated me.
My fitness motivation comes from different places (often from you guys on instagram, heyyy). But I know some people do things like vision boards, photos, etc.
As we start prepping for #PSPfit bootcamp, I’d love to offer my girls some ideas on where to look for inspiration when we feel like giving up…. any suggestions?
This week, to find inspiration, I filmed myself working out its actually kinda funny to see how I look when I’m in the zone, so I made it into a little workout vlog. Maybe in a few months I’ll be jumping higher than I am here…
p.s. you still have time to order your #PSPfit Tshirt here our shirts ship internationally! Supporting our next set of workout videos with a shirt also gets you a chance to win a Fall online bootcamp membership (you can join from anywhere!) You can reserve a shirt here