New Favorite Veggie!

I love trying new foods, especially fruits and vegetables.

I’ll be honest, I thought I had tried all the fruits and veggies out there until one of my client’s asked me if I had ever had Jicama.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I thought about it, and realized I had not.

So the next time I was at the grocery store, I decided to pick up some and try it out for myself.

The result?

My absolute favorite new veggie!

If you have never tried jicama before, it’s a root vegetable that has the texture of an apple, crunch like a carrot and is a bit sweet.

It’s a great source of fiber and it has a ton of vitamin C!

I eat it raw and I love to have it on hand to snack on.

And if you are a “snacker” like me, this a great veggie to snack on and not worry about the calories or expanding your waistline.

It’s super easy to prepare.

Here are the simple steps to cut up a jicama.

Cut whole jicama in half

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cut skin off like you would a pineapple. I tried using a peeler like I would a potato, but the skin is too tough and thick for the type of peeler I have.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cut jicama up into sticks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And lastly…ENJOY!

I am going to look at some recipes that the jicama is cooked to see how I like it like that. But for right now, I am loving this simple veggie as a snack throughout the day.

If you are a person who likes to snack, this is the veggie for you.

Hope you try it, or maybe go back to it if you have already tried it, and let me know how you like it by commenting below!

Happy eating! 🙂

4 Ways to Deal With Temptation for Fat Loss

Can you relate?

Yesterday I was at the store picking up some Easter stuff for Parker.

Every year we have an Easter egg hunt for her in the house.

We put candy in plastic eggs, she looks around for them and we all have a lot of fun.

So as I was looking at all the different candy to put in the plastic eggs, I found myself thinking…

“OH! I love these!! I’ll get them!”

I did this 3 different times.

Then it hit me.

The candy is NOT for me, yet there I was wanting to get P all the types of candy I love to eat.

I’m more of a chocolate person, as P likes candy like jelly beans and candies of those sorts.

And I know that if I get her the candy I like, the temptation WILL be there for me to eat a lot, if not most of it.

Have you ever been there?

The temptation is right in front of you and all will power is about to fly out the window?

What do you do?

Do you give in?

Do you walk away?

Yesterday, for me, I put back 2 of the “favorite candy” bags and picked up only 1 bag of P’s favorite candy.

But I’ll be honest, that doesn’t always happen.

And this is a question I get from clients a lot.

“How do I stop temptation?”

There are a dozen and a half different ways, but I’ll give you my top 4.

  1. Keep it out of sight!
    If it’s not in front of you or in the vicinity, then you have a better chance of not giving into temptation.One rule we have in our house is, if we want a treat like ice cream or cookies or pizza, then we go out and get just just enough for that one sitting, not an entire week’s worth. Because we too give into temptation and if it’s in the house, you can bet we will be eating it until it’s gone.So in simpler terms, just don’t buy it. And if it is at work, make sure you don’t keep walking around it or by it.
  2. Fill up on the good stuff first.
    If you are craving sweets or chips or candy, tell yourself you will eat a piece of fruit first or a big salad or a bunch of veggies or even drink 20 oz of water and THEN you can have the temptation.This does one of two things.First, it fills you up so you are less likely to eat a lot of the craving/temptation then you would have if you didn’t eat/drink the good stuff first.Second, the craving/temptation might go away all together. Sometimes people are actually dehydrated rather then hungry. Or if you do have something to eat, it will raise your blood sugar (in a good way) and that’s all you needed.
  3. Have a pep-talk with yourself.
    One thing I always ask myself when I want to give into temptation is “Is this going help me get me to my next goal?”More times than not, it won’t.You have to decide… Is it worth it? Is this going to sabotage my hard work?Ninety-nine percent of the time, the answers to the above are: No and Yes. No, it’s not worth it and yes, it probably will sabotage my hard work.So then if those are the answers, I tell myself I need to walk away.
  4. Just give in!
    Sometimes that’s what needs to happen.I have had times where nothing, and I mean NOTHING, will stop me from having a cookie (or 5) or digging into the bag of chips or even eating a few too many pieces of pizza.It happens.Don’t beat yourself up about it and don’t feel guilty.

    But what you don’t want to do is turn that one temptation meal/snack into an all out binge for days, weeks or even months.

    Just give in for that one time, I promise you, the world will not end.

So the next time you have temptation sitting right in front of you, go through this list in your head.

And no matter what you decide, be happy with the decision.

Again, 1 bump in the road will not keep you from your goals.

If you stumble on that bump, get back up ASAP, wipe yourself off and get back to it!

 

 

 

Getting Back On Track

First I want to apologize for being MIA.

I have been in quite a funk when it comes to my training.

I’ve been training, but in all honesty it hasn’t been something I’ve wanted to do or really put my heart into it.

I guess you can say I have just been going through the motions with my training.

This happens, even to a fitness professional like myself.

Sometimes your heart and head are just not into it.

And as much as I hate it, I understand that in the end it will make me better.

I’m sure you’re asking why/how it will make me better especially since being in a “funk” could lead to undoing all my hard work.

Well in a couple different ways.

  1. I take this as my body telling me to slow down and take a break from what I am doing at the moment.
  2. It also tells me that maybe I need to look at new goals. That maybe this goal I am working towards at the moment is not the best one for my body and/or mind. But just because I might stop working towards this goal does not mean I will never go back to it. It just means I am taking a break from it.
  3. And lastly, I feel this will make me better because I will be learning more about my body. With every goal that I work towards I am always wanting to learn more about my body and how it reacts to different training and/or eating. Because the more I know, the better I can do the next time around.

So with all this being said I have gotten my groove back 😉

I feel that I am out of my funk and ready to really jump back into my training and hit my next goal.

I will be posting progress over the next couple of months, but really I want to go more in depth about what I am doing and why, not necessarily the end result.

 

Easy Way to Stop Throwing Out Produce!

One of my biggest pet peeves is throwing away food that has gone bad.

Especially fresh fruits and veggies.

One thing that seems to go bad quickly for us is spinach.

A couple of weeks ago my husband bought 3 big bags of spinach because it was on sale

We go through a lot of spinach for our smoothies.

But this time we didn’t since I had to go out of town for 4 days and last week while looking in the fridge, I saw all the spinach he bought was going bad and getting slimy 🙁

So instead of throwing all that away, and wasting it, I came up with a plan.

I decided since this spinach was going to be used for smoothies, why not just freeze it?

But I didn’t want to just throw the bags in the freezer and let them be.

I decided to blend all 3 bags up (basically liquify them) and freeze them in ice cube trays.

And I’ll admit, I’m pretty happy with the results 🙂

Here’s what I did….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I took all 3 bags and placed handfuls at a time, along with a little water, in the blender.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I then kept adding the spinach until all 3 bags were liquid.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I poured the liquid into the ice cube trays.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now when I need the spinach for my smoothies, I just take out 4-5 cubes and blend it in with the rest of the fruits and veggies!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m looking at trying other veggies to do this with. Not only to be able to keep them longer, but to add more to my smoothie.

Hope you try it and if you do, make sure you comment below how it turned out!

Maintaining is Leading to Fat Loss???

Just like everyone else, I usually gain anywhere from 5-8 pounds over the holiday season.

Cookies, rich foods, candy, etc.

I love them ALL!

Yet this time…I actually lost fat and leaned out.

Here are pics taken from December 20th (the two on the left) and pics taken from yesterday, January 11th (the two on the right).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m not going to go into HOW I did it….that will be saved for another post 😉

But I will tell you what I DIDN’T do.

  1. I didn’t diet. AT ALL! I ate real whole foods that would allow me to have the fuel for my training and give me the nutrients I need to be healthy.
  2. I didn’t do any type of “detox” or cleanse. Around this time of year I see ads and commercials for detox/cleanse supplements, shakes, pills, juices, etc. Because you have a liver and kidneys your body naturally detoxes and cleans itself. If you want to “detox” by getting rid of the bad stuff, eat whole nutritious foods, drink a lot of water each day and limit the junk that is out there. Pills, juices, supplements, etc don’t need to be added and in some cases are just plain junk.
  3. I didn’t stick to my nutrition 100%. I think this one will shock a lot of people. If you’re like me you think you need to be “all or nothing”, when in fact as long as you are 80-90% compliant, you WILL see results. It was the holidays, my brother and sister-in-law were in town and my mom makes the most WONDERFUL desserts. I was not about to pass up on those. And seconds. And thirds. Well you see where I’m going with this. LOL
  4. I didn’t do TONS of cardio or run myself into the ground with strenuous training everyday. In fact, I didn’t do cardio at all. I stuck to my strength training and heart rate monitored conditioning during the week. I even missed about 4 days of training due to getting a nasty sinus infection. I didn’t let that bother me because I knew I needed to rest.

I do want you to know that right now I don’t have any specific goals, which if you are familiar with my blog, you know I usually always have a goal.

Right now I’m concentrating on being healthy and making sure my nutrition is on point for my nutrition.

Take a look at what you want to achieve.

Can you commit to eating real whole foods?

Can you commit to 80-90% compliance?

Can you commit to not running yourself into the ground with each training session?

Make sure you check back to see what I DID do to achieve my results so far!

 

“You want me to eat WHAT?!?”

“You want me to eat WHAT?!?!”

That is the most common question I get when I suggest this simple, fast and healthy snack.

And here it is…baby food.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, I’m sure you are saying the exact same thing I wrote above, but hear me out.

About 2 years ago I was traveling with my husband and daughter flying to Wisconsin to visit our family. While on the plane, my husband and I both became hungry and realized we hadn’t brought any snacks with us except for the pouches of fruit and veggie baby food and some other baby snacks for our daughter. (**little side note…the TSA will not let you bring these on a flight if you do not have a baby/toddler with you. They are considered “liquid”.)

So with Parker eating the other snacks, we decided to each try one of the baby food fruit/veggie pouches.

And you know what?

They are pretty good.

Since then, they have become a staple in our household for not only Parker, but for us as well.

I love to have them on hand since they are not only quick and portable, but because they are healthy as well. Also, if I am keeping them at my desk at the gym, I know that they won’t go bad sitting out.

If I know I’m going to be running errands all day or going on a long road trip, I make sure to have a couple fruit/veggie pouches along with a small bag of almonds and viola! A great snack to hold me over until my next meal.

I always recommend to my clients to keep a couple at their desk at work just in case they forget their snacks at home or if they are extra hungry that day. Keeping these there helps fight the temptation to go to the vending machine and grab a candy bar or anything with tons of sugar.

If you are weary about eating baby food, then there are pouches like these in stores for adults. Some of them have extra stuff in them such as chia seeds or flax, but are still very good.

I hope you try these, as they are a great way to keep your nutrition in check while getting your servings of fruit and veggies. 🙂

 

8 Weeks of Maintenance…What I’ve Learned

I’m the first to admit, maintaining fat loss after hitting a goal is the hardest thing for me.

I can hit my goals when I work towards them.

I can keep my head in the game and turn away junk food or make sure I get my butt in the gym when I need to.

But when it comes to maintaining….I fall short.

I used to think it was because I was on the “wrong” maintenance plan for nutrition and/or program. And I would try every maintenance program and nutrition out there. I was convinced it had to be that.

But I was wrong and I finally realize that.

These pics are from yesterday morning…P decided she needed to join in on the fun 😉

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Over the past 8 weeks I really have taken a look at ME and why I gain the weight/fat back after hitting my goals.

I have found out that I am an “All or nothing” type of person when it comes to my nutrition.

When I’m working towards my goals, I know what I can and cannot eat.

I have a plan in place.

I know when I can have those “reward” meals and when I need to pass up the cookies that I am offered.

Then after I hit my goal….I tell myself, “Good job! Now EAT!!!” And I let myself eat whatever, whenever.

I rationalize and I ruin all the hard work I put in while working towards my goal.

So this time I decided I needed a better plan.

I needed a plan that let me eat what I want, but not whenever I want.

And that’s exactly what I have been doing over the past 8 weeks and it has worked.

Since hitting my last goal 8 weeks ago, I have only gained back 3 pounds.

Now you might be saying…”But you still gained scale weight back!”

True, but only gaining 3 pounds instead of the usual 10-15 (yes…that much), is a HUGE success. Remember…baby steps.

I have “softened” up a little, but that is to be expected. I’m not training the same way as I was leading up to the photo shoot back in October. And I am not eating 100% clean, meaning I am having 2-3 reward meals a week instead of only 1 or none.

So what exactly have I learned???

  1. I have learned that it doesn’t need to be “All or Nothing” when it comes to maintenance nutrition. I can…as cliche as it sounds, have my cake and eat it too. 😉
  2. I have learned just like I need a plan for reaching a goal, I need an even better plan for maintaining that goal. I can’t just leave it to chance and let myself eat, eat and eat!
  3. Lastly, I have learned that I need to keep myself just as accountable to maintaining as I do for reaching my goals.

I have heard from a lot of clients and other women and men that this too is probably the hardest part for them when it comes to fat loss. This is one of the reasons why I like to talk about it.

Make sure you check back next week when I go over exactly what I have been doing to maintain and why I chose this way.

 

 

 

Recipe: Vegetable Soup-Pressure Cooker

As an early Christmas present, I got a new pressure cooker. I have been wanting to get one of these for awhile now and I was so excited to start using it.

I haven’t tried cooking a lot in it, but I can tell already it will become a staple in my weekly meal prepping.

Last week I posted a picture of a vegetable soup I made in the pressure cooker on my personal Instagram and I got a lot of inquiries on what the exact recipe was.

Well, if you have read any of my recipe posts, you know that I hardly follow recipes when it comes to cooking. Most of the time I use whatever we have on hand, and that is exactly what I did with this soup.

Here is the “recipe” I put together for the vegetable soup.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients:
4-5 Carrots peeled and chopped
1/2 onion chopped
4-5 potatoes chopped (depending on how big)
1 bunch of celery chopped
1 can of Rotel **not pictured**
1 red pepper chopped **no pictured**
1 cup lentils
1 tbl of garlic
1 bay leaf
1 tbl of oregano
1 bouillon cube of chicken stock
4 cups of water
salt/pepper

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Put all the chopped veggies, except the potatoes, in a pan and saute for about 5 min. (I know I can saute in my pressure cooker, but I haven’t explored that yet lol)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once the veggies are cooked a little, add all ingredients to the pressure cooker. I had cooked the first batch for 20 minutes, which turned out to be too long and the lentils basically turned to mush. So yesterday I only cooked it for 18 minutes and it turned out perfectly!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This has become one of our favorite soups already and with the cold front coming this weekend (only reaching a high of 30!!!! ), I will probably be making it again LOL.

 

It Doesn’t Happen Overnight

Over the past week I have gotten a lot of women reach out to me and congratulate me on not only reaching my goal, but being the leanest I have ever been.

This was taken last week the morning of my shoot.

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I’ve also gotten a lot of questions from those women, as well as others, on how can they get that lean by “X” date and exactly what “diet” I did to reach my goal. And since I have gotten so many of those questions, I wanted to take the time to answer them here.

First and foremost, I want everyone to know that this might have been a 16 week goal that I was working towards, but it took over 2 years to reach this point.

Two years of ups and downs.

Two years of going through frustrations (oh, there were plenty) and celebrations.

Two years of hard work and saying “No” to some of those very much craved foods and sweets.

What I’m trying to get at here is that in a world that is all about “instant gratification”, getting to your fat loss goal/body composition goal is not something that can happen overnight or maybe even this year.

It takes time.

And something I have always told my clients, and I’m sure you have heard it as well, is that it didn’t come on overnight, it’s not going to leave overnight.

As for the question about what “diet” I did, I want to put a huge emphasis on the fact that I have not been dieting or restricting my calories the entire 2 years.

If I had been doing that, I would not have reached my goals.

What I have been doing is what we like to call “sprinting” and “jogging” when it comes to my nutrition.

Think of “sprinting” as the actual “dieting down” part of the plan.

This is where I am restricting calories, but nothing too serious, taking certain foods out, or eating less of them and having zero cheat meals.

This part of the plan can only be done for 6-8 weeks for myself. Anything more than 6-8 weeks, and my body will turn against me and the fat loss will stop.

For some, they can sprint up to 12 weeks if needed. But again, it’s not something that is long term or something you continue to do all your life.

The other phase of the plan is the “jogging”.

This can be anywhere from 4-16 weeks, possibly longer, just depending on what your goals are.

The “jogging” phase is where you are still conscience of what you are eating, sticking to a great plan, but there is more wiggle room, if you will. But this is not an “all you can eat” phase. If you are not careful, you will gain a good amount of fat back and sometimes more.

You need to raise your calories slowly and slow the pace or you’ll burn out. This can be a hard mental shift, but it’s necessary.

The scale will go up a little, but that isn’t failure. You body needs to rest and get used to its “new normal”. You can try to keep dieting, but it won’t work and you’ll do more damage than good.

I think this is the easiest way for anyone to start reaching their goals.

Breaking up the plan into “sprints” and “jogs” will not only help mentally but physically as well.

If you are interested in getting more information on how “sprinting” and “jogging”, and other ways to help reach your goals, make sure you sign up for my newsletter!!

16 Week Goal=Completed!

First, sorry I have been MIA for the past 4 weeks. A lot going on with the business and getting ready for the completion of my goal.

I am so excited to say I have reached my 16 week goal and the results are amazing! If I do say so myself 😉

The photos on the left were from 16 weeks ago and the photos on the right from yesterday morning. What you can’t see in the photo might shock you. Keep reading to find out what that is!

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If you didn’t already know, my goal was to get lean for a photo shoot.

I know what you are probably saying….”ANOTHER photo shoot?!”

Yes, but this time it wasn’t just for the fun of it, all if it is for this blog and my Train Like A Girl program (coming soon!!!).

I needed to get more “fitness related” photos and so that meant I needed to find a photographer that specialized in just that.

And that is exactly what I did.

I follow a lot of fitness models on Instagram and the one photographer I kept seeing pop up in their accounts, and the pics were/are phenomenal, was Michael Neveux.

Michael has been photographing fitness models and professionals for over two decades. You have probably seen a lot of his work on fitness magazine covers and articles inside the magazines.

I was lucky enough to get an opportunity to work with him and I jumped right on it! And I couldn’t be happier with the pictures I have seen so far!

But in order to be able to do the shoot, I needed to get my nutrition and training back on track. So I set that 16 week goal.

If you have been reading my blog, you know I’ve had some ups and some downs during the 16 weeks.

I’ll be honest…I’m not that surprised.

No matter how great the nutrition and training program is, you will ALWAYS have at least 1 day where you want to give up because you are that frustrated.

But the key to success…is pushing through those frustrations and keep on going.

I think the one thing I think you will be EXTREMELY surprised at, because honestly…I was, is that I only lost 5 pounds of scale weight from start to finish during the 16 weeks.

Yes! ONLY 5 POUNDS!!!

But as you can see from the pics above, the difference between the two is huge.

Once again this just shows how false a scale can be.

It doesn’t track your true results.

I want to thank you for keeping up with my posts about getting to my goal. Whether you know it or not, you are the ones keeping me accountable…and I thank you and appreciate you for it.

Make sure to check back later this week to see what I am doing next and another little tidbit about my journey so far!