One Last Note

Good morning, sunshine :) I began writing this post several times. I’ve kept it a draft for a while, fine-tuning and nit-picking. But here it is:

For a little over three years now, I’ve written hundreds of blog posts with thousands of pictures. It’s become a scrapbook for me, documenting my own journey through college and finding balance with a healthy lifestyle. I’m very proud of some of the work I’ve produced (and trust me, I cringe at some of my work too…) Today, though, I’m closing my chapter on Strong Like My Coffee. Today marks the end of my blogging career while I pursue my other passions :)

Southport Beach NC Swings Safe Haven

I still love writing. I still love taking pictures. I still love health and fitness, running, weight lifting, and hiking. I love learning about the body and exercise science, and finding new challenges. I love creating healthy beautiful recipes, I love learning about nutrition and the healthiest ways to fuel our bodies. I just don’t necessarily feel the need the share it all so publically. My heart hasn’t really been into blogging for some time.

Writing new posts turned into a “chore” when it meant giving up a couple precious hours of “free time” I had each week. My blog’s focus is on health and fitness, so any splurge on ice cream or Cheez-its left me feeling guilty of being a hypocrite.

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My About Me page needed a total re-haul, updating the fact that I am no longer 21, a college student, a sports marketing intern or a cross country athlete. The entire “theme” of Strong Like My Coffee has circulated around Healthy College Girl….I’m still healthy and I’m still a girl but 33% of that equation is no longer accurate. I’m not a food blogger, a fitness blogger or a lifestyle blogger. I lost my niche. And I had no interest in finding a new one. As I realized the need to update my “About” page and my overall theme, I knew that I was actually ready to be done.

After opening my personal fitness journey up to the world wide web, I’m gaining an appreciation for privacy. For keeping my journey my own. So for now, I’m focusing on training for November’s marathon, studying for my personal training certification, continuing my marketing career, and figuring out independency as a 22-year old who’s been too spoiled for her own good :)


When I started this “project, ” blogging was a hobby to distract myself during my recovery from surgery. I think it served its purpose. I found new passions in creating healthy recipes, trying new forms of workouts, learning about fitness trends and following some pretty cool other bloggers. I’m ready for my next projects/distractions, whatever they may be.

Thank you for reading and supporting Strong Like My Coffee for these past three years! I hope you have a happy, healthy and wonderful start to your new week :)

Love, Kenzie

Following Fitness Accounts on Social Media

On Monday night, I skipped the gym to study for the NASM CPT exam. Earlier that morning, I got in a decent recovery run after Sunday’s 17-miler and the rest of the day was total rest for my body. My brain on the other hand got quite a workout with anatomy vocabulary ;)

This morning began at 4:30 as usual, a cup of coffee and a HIIT workout with a few new-to-me exercises. My current favorite Instagram fitness account is Sugary Six Pack…her workouts are intense and have such variety! My HIIT routines tend to all incorporate the same 10 exercises so its awesome to find something brand new and challenging. When you read every fitness magazine, follow dozens of fitness blogs, read every fitness article, study fitness textbooks, and people-watch in the gym on the daily, you eventually feel like you’ve “seen it all” when it comes to exercises. Learning about a totally new exercise or technique is almost as exciting as finding a new ice cream flavor or discovering a new color :D

New Blog Post Following Fitness Accounts on Social Media Healthy or Harmful

Now I’m not extremely active on social media, but I do love Instagram. I’ve deactivated Facebook, abandoned my school-required Twitter account, deleted my Pinterest app, and avoided any affiliation with Tinder, Snapchat, and Youtube. But for some reason, those glossy flawlessly-filtered photos on Instagram with their clever captions and enviable composition keep me coming back for more. I’m constantly comparing my own oatmeal breakfast with the food bloggers’ gorgeously plated avocado toast that is way too green to be natural. Finding a new fitness account leads to scrolling through weeks’ worth of pictures of perfectly chiseled abs in a bathroom mirror selfie and redundant hashtags. I know I’m not the only one.

Sometimes, I catch myself in comparison mode and force myself to take a break from the social media binges. I’ve unfollowed several accounts that were inundating my feed with transformation posts, gym selfies, and workout recaps. Constantly seeing muscular fitness fanatics made me start to question my own credibility in the gym.

There are hundreds of thousands of accounts out there with their “fitspo” theme: fitness inspiration. Seeing healthy breakfast ideas, fun new workout clothes, and your best friend’s new heart rate monitor is great! But at what point do the same sports-bra-and-spandex selfies start to lose their “inspiring” powers? In finance classes we learn about the Law of Diminishing Returns. Inevitably at some point, your input will start to yield less and less output. Huh? Well my teacher gave an example of free Starbucks lattes…

At first, you’re like SCORE. Bring on the salted caramel mocha. Don’t hold back with that whip cream. Three cups later, and that free latte is still yummy but not as incredible as the first two. Five lattes later and you are DONE. You wouldn’t accept another latte right now even though it’s free. At some point, the free gift becomes unwanted. You’ve worn out the novelty.

lady starbucks

Does that law apply to the media and all of the content we fill our brains with? It’s no doubt inspiring to see such a community building around sharing fitness success and journeys. Sharing a healthy homemade smoothie trumps sharing that heart attack breakfast sandwich. Fruit tends to photograph better than greasy “potatoes” anyways. ;) BUT how much is too much? Is there such a thing as too much? Could an endless feed of “perfect bodies” meant to inspire have an opposite effect? Or am I way overthinking this?

Following Fitspo Accounts on Social Media New Blog Posts

I think we have to be smart about the content and media we feed our brain. If you recognize that the content you follow leads to unhealthy comparisons or an obsession with sharing your fitness journey then maybe we can take a little break from the social media saga. This week I unfollowed all but three of the “fitness” accounts that I subscribed to. Same with the healthy recipe accounts and life style bloggers. Much respect to the incredible food bloggers, fitness competitors and lifestyle guru’s who have mastered the art of sharing their passions. I just think that these “perfect” pictures can sometimes diminish the imperfectly perfect reality that we are in.

What are your thoughts on healthy communities on social media? :)

Seventeen Miles and Some Southern Cookin’ (Happy Birthday, Daddy!)

Hope you’re feeling fresh this Monday morning for a brand new week :) If not, well…there’s always coffee.

Health's Kitchen Brunch and Coffee |

My dad’s birthday fell on Sunday….traditional long run day for marathon training. He’s been my long run buddy, tackling the miles right along side me on his bike.  I offered to switch this week’s 17-miler to Saturday, or let him sleep in and head out by myself. But he insisted that he didn’t mind starting off his special day just like every Sunday for the past month. He’s a special kind of weird. :)

When he turned 50, he and I did a half-century bike ride together…50 miles to the beach. Last year, my “present” to him was hiking the Cactus to Clouds trail near palm springs. My little not-so-subtle reminder that age is just a number and being active is the best counter to aging. Plus I just like spending time outside with him. ANYWAYS, back to the run…

Of course it also happened to be 104 degrees on Sunday (Hey, Happy First Day of Autumn!). You can sleep in or you can escape the heat, you cannot have both. When I woke up to start the coffee pot, it was still dark out. By 7am, we were cruising around the neighborhood as I tried to piece together seventeen miles that were mostly shady, paved, and did not include running multiple loops.

Marathon Training Long Run 17 miler |

I made it through the run with three water stops and a tangerine gu, replaying my most adrenaline-inducing playlist. Two hours later, I had logged my longest run since 2014’s marathon. 17 miles, 2 hours and 4 minutes, 7:18 average mile pace. Complete success to me, considering I felt like I had plenty left in the tank as I cooled down and stretched. But all the marathon research I’ve done has been very clear about one thing: be patient, because you do not want to “peak” to early or fatigue yourself before the actual race. So I crossed that major task off my to-do list and re-focused my energy on new birthday recipes!

Typically my dad likes Mexican food on his birthday but this year’s request came way out of left field: homemade chicken & waffles, with peach cobbler a la mode. A southern meal that is pretty far from anything I’ve ever made before. I’ll take the opportunity for practice getting ready for southern living in the Carolina’s!

Homemade Chicken and Waffles for Dinner

The meal is slightly healthified with some modifications. Not to be confused with “healthy.” There is nothing healthy about this meal, just keeping it real. Even future personal trainers break the clean-eating diet for special occasions :)

We oven-baked the chicken, made whole wheat waffles, and kept portions in check with a green salad. Success, y’all!

Homemade Chicken and Waffles

And no,  I didn’t make my dad complete a Spartan race, an Ironman, or anything crazy for his birthday. Nope, we actually kept it low-key with a guilt-free relaxing afternoon, iced coffees, Mad Men episodes, football, NASCAR (okay, I totally Pinterest-ed during that part) and some presents.

We LOVED our cinnamon-y peach cobbler, and I promise there were candles but it was a little difficult to make the crumbly peachy mixture appetizing in a photograph. You can take my word for it ;)

Birthday Peach Cobbler

This week I’m starting serious studying for the NASM exam, mixing in some speed and tempo workouts for the marathon training and getting back into clean-eating mode. See you here again soon! :)


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