Life, workouts

Manifesta Activewear

Happy New Year!! I’m so excited for 2015. I love the feeling of a fresh start that comes with a new year. It may just be another day but the refreshing dose of motivation that comes with it is always welcome.

Around this time motivation for getting healthy is at an all time high. Along with the New Year’s motivation, I often find some motivation in wearing cute workout gear. A few weeks ago while browsing online I came across Manifesta. What attracted me to them was their positive, encouraging posts on Social Media. After digging a little bit deeper into the company I found their manifesta on their website and I fell in love.



We believe that every woman deserves to feel sexy.
We believe that every woman deserves to look amazing.
We believe that every woman deserves the chance to achieve greatness.
We believe that every woman deserves the opportunity to improve herself and her fitness.
We believe that the only valid judge of a woman is herself.

Manifesta is a body positive activewear company. I found out this was a small company founded by a fellow Crossfitter who simply got tired of not being able to find cute well fitting clothing to WOD in. I chatted with the founder, Rachel, for a bit and she offered to send me an outfit to try out. The first thing I noticed when I was looking through their products was the sizing. Manifesta wants women to stop being so caught up in a certain number on a label so they created their own sizing chart naming each size something unique like Lily, Rose, Poppy, & Violet. They also don’t just have conventional sizes, they have sizes that range from 0-24. She sent me the Sore Not Sorry Capri and the All the Right moves tank, both in Orchid.


I put these through the paces during a few WODs and I can say I really appreciate having a cute outfit that is sturdy and stays in place!  The material is thick enough to not show every flaw, but breathable enough to keep you cool during a tough WOD. All their clothing is made with the curvy woman in mind so it fits in the waist, thighs, and butt… typical problem areas for a curvy girl. The material is also sustainably sourced.

A photo posted by Courtney Norman (@courtnorm) on

Overall I’m super pleased with the quality and performance of manifesta activewear and I plan on expanding my collection! I’ve got my eye on this Keep Your Head Up Hoodie for my next purchase!


If you are looking for quality activewear made for curvy women, you have to try them out! They have been kind enough to offer my readers 25% off! Use the code Dreamer25 to get 25% off your purchase.

What do you look for in activewear?


Level 1 Apparel Review & Giveaway

CrossFitters are know for a lot of things… knee socks, sweat angels, & epic shirts are just a few. When it comes to CrossFit shirts the most common ones are those with hilarious sayings that seem to be in a foreign language (and may be slightly offensive to those who are unfamiliar with the terminology). Now, I’m one of the most immature people around and will be the first to make a “that’s what she said” joke but I can also appreciate a really well done graphic design. Level 1 Apparel goes beyond the hilariously inappropriate/motivational quote and incorporates some amazing graphic design into their apparel.


When I first saw their work I was instantly drawn to all the detail. The neon Death by Barbell tank is just as comfortable as it is cool. I fit comfortably in a large. I paired mine with my pink Fabletics Lima Capris


I also wore it during a humid day when the WOD included bear complexes… so yea, it was nearly death by barbell… The tanks they print on are super soft and have a looser fit, so if you are between sizes size down.

They have guys apparel also! One of my favorite guy designs is the Bear Complex t-shirt


I mean- how hard core is that, right? How can you not feel strong wearing something like that! Brian and his wife started this company in the Fall of 2012 after helping design shirts for their box. It turned out so well they started their own line and have continued to design for other boxes as well. I love what he has to say about designing apparel – “Our goal is to provide apparel for CrossFit athletes that includes more than just a catchy slogan, but is also a work of art. Each design is meticulously drawn and revised, with close attention paid to every detail.”

So if you are looking for a rockin tshirt or tank to wear during your next WOD be sure to hop over to the Level 1 Apparel site and check it out. Not only was Brian kind enough to send me a tank to try out, he wants to give away a gift certificate for one of you to pick out your own tank or tee from his line! Giveaway will be open through 4/15 and winner will be announed on 4/16.

 a Rafflecopter giveaway


It Works! Wrap Review (from a skeptic)

I’ve been on this health journey for quite sometime. I’ve lost a significant amount of fat and have been very open about my issues with sagging skin. I know there is no “miracle cure” and I’ve been a pretty hard core skeptic when it comes to products that claim to give miraculous results. I’ve also been known to have an intense dislike for anything in a Multi-Level Marketing format. So when I started seeing things for It Works! Products to say I was a skeptic would be a severe understatement.

When I saw one of my very level headed, intelligent, and hilarious friends, Angelina, start posting that she was a distributor for It Works! Products I immediately started interrogating asking her about the products. I knew she would blatantly honest with me about the products. She sent me some pictures of people she knew personally that had results. She told me that this would be a great product to along with a healthy diet and exercise regimen. She didn’t promise I would lost x amount of pounds or inches. She simply believed in the products and wanted me to try them for myself. Her and another distributor, Stephanie,  put together a package that included 1 treatment (4 wraps) of the It Works! wraps, 1 bottle of defining gel,and a few samples of their energy bars and greens.

I read through all the information looking for flaws and loopholes. I decided to try the first wrap during a day when I was hope. They say to leave it on for at least 45 minutes but up to 8 hours. I went with 3 hours. The application was easy, just open and unwrap the cloth and put it where you want to see results. I, of course, went with my tummy. I followed the instructions to a T… placed the wrap and used saran wrap to keep it in place. Totally hot, right?


Anyway, after the 3 hours I removed the wrap and massaged the leftover gel in. I was pleasantly surprised with the results.



Obviously, I have a major overhang of skin at the bottom of my abdomen. I also have had my skin scrunch up around my belly button. I’ve had super dark pink stretch marks across my middle abdomen (thanks, pregnancy). I measured before, right after removing and 72 hours later. Right after removing the wrap I had lost a total of 2 inches. 72 hours later my measurements were down 5.5 inches, with 3.5 of those inches being around my belly button… one of my problem areas.

While I was impressed with the change in my measurements I was interested to see if they would stay the same for a few days before I wrapped again. I noticed my waist and upper abdomen fluctuated up a few inches, while my lower abdomen actually went down an inch. The second wrap I did overnight.

IMG_3352 IMG_3353

I saw a significant change in the pictures but my measurements actually went up a bit. I think it was because I did it overnight and wasn’t drinking water like I did for the other one.

3 days later I tried wrap 3.

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The major differences I started to see was that the shade of my stretch marks got lighter, my skin felt tighter, and there wasn’t as much sagging around my belly button.

I got caught up in thanksgiving and life and didn’t do my last wrap for about a week and a half after the third one. My before wrap 4 measurements were about an inch more than they were after wrap 3, but uhm… hello, thanksgiving.



Again I noticed the lighter color of my stretch marks and more tightening of the skin around my belly button.

So, the final results….


So, my thoughts? I think this is a really good ACCESSORY. It does not replace a healthy diet and exercise program. I would not classify it as a weight loss product, it is more of a beauty product. It didn’t magically make me lose weight. I was eating clean and exercising during these few weeks of trying the products. I was lucky enough to have a distributor who didn’t try to sell me this product by telling me it would make my tummy flat in x amount of treatments. I still weigh the same as I did when I started these wraps, dang that 183 it just won’t go away. My measurements, however, did change.

Before Wrap 1-
Upper Abdomen: 33
Waist at Belly Button: 41
Lower Abdomen: 43

After Wrap 4-
Upper Abdomen: 32
Waist at Belly Button: 37
Lower Abdomen: 41

That’s a total of 7 inches lost!

AGAIN – I was eating (mostly) clean and doing CrossFit 6+ times a week while doing these wraps. The results I saw were a combonation of that along with the It Works! Products.

The Verdict? I’m pleased with my results and I think that they are worth the price. I’ll for sure become a loyal customer (you get better pricing as long as you order at least 1 product a month for 3 months) They actually have some holiday sales going on right now too if you want to check them out visit either Angelina or Stephanie’s website for more details.

Have you ever tried It Works Wraps? Why or Why Not?

Disclaimer – I was provided these products at no cost. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Reviews, Weight Loss

My Coffee History {CLICK Espresso Protein Review}

I love coffee. Like a lot. I never thought I would say that. I used to be so disgusted by the taste of coffee. Back when I was in high school I would be up at 5:30, at school by 6:15, stay after school until 4:30 with extra-curricular activities, go to work at 5:30 and be home after 10:30… and start all over again. I started drinking disgusting office coffee just to get through some of those late night hours of data entry/phone sales (yes, in my former life I was a telemarketer (a really good one)… please don’t stop reading my blog because of it!) Anyway… back to that disgusting office coffee… You know the kind I’m talking about… the kind that has the consistency (and taste) of tar. Add in the generic sugar and powdered non-dairy creamer they bought in bulk from costco… You know what i’m talking about…


I feel old even saying this, but starbucks didn’t seem to get popular until around my senior year or so. Once I tasted one of those heavenly white chocolate mochas I was hooked. Until I found out they had 500 calories (or more!) Now I like to think I’m balanced with my coffee addiction. I have graduated from strictly light roast blends with heavily flavored creamers to being able to drink most any blend with So Delicious Unflavored Coconut Creamer. I usually have one cup a day, but sometimes after a 4:20am wake up call for CrossFit I need a little something more in the afternoons as a pick me up.

I heard about CLICK Espresso protein from different blogs I read, as well as seeing it around Twitter and Facebook. I was intrigued at the idea. Protein curbs hunger and helps your muscles recover, add some coffee to that and it sounds like the perfect afternoon pick me up to me! I was excited when my CLICK review package showed up on my doorstep this weekend.

Click Espresso Protein

(disclosure: I was given this product in exchange for my honest review on the blog)

I received a full canister of CLICK Vanilla Latte Espresso Protein, a CLICK blender bottle, as well as samples of the CLICK Mocha and Decaf.

I mixed my CLICK with Almond milk and while I may sometimes drink strong coffee, the coffee flavor of this seemed especially strong. I did have to mix it a little longer than normal protein. I tried both the Vanilla Latte and the Mocha and it seemed like the Mocha had a better flavor to it. It has just 120 calories per serving, which is less than most regular lattes out there. The 15 grams of protein help curb hunger and my afternoon snacking tendencies, which will inevitably help with my weight loss. While this works great for an afternoon pick me up, I wouldn’t necessarily use it as my only post-workout protein. I feel like I need more than 15 grams of protein to help recovery after CrossFit.

Their website has tons of recipes you can use CLICK in also. You can have it iced, blended or hot. There is so much variety for every kind of coffee lover. They even have decaf available too. Overall It is a good product that I think will help me with my weight loss goals.

Are you a coffee lover or hater? How do you like your coffee?