Thursday, December 10, 2015

Healthy Holiday Dessert

I came across this recipe online, and it reminds me of something my grandmother used to make!

Best of all, it's LOW CALORIE and HEALTHY, and everyone still loves it. Fruit and Jell-O are the focus of this dessert, making it sweet and light, while Greek yogurt adds a tart creaminess, and packs in a bit of protein!

I use the sugar-free kind, which is made with sugar substitute.  However, I never eat sugar substitute any other time, but feel free to use full-sugar jello (this will increase the calorie count), the recipe doesn't change. Otherwise, there are just 6 ingredients!

The Butterfly Effect, Vanessa McLaughlin, Healthy dessert
INGREDIENTS

2 large boxes .60 oz of red Jell-O (I use a box of raspberry and black cherry, my grandmother used raspberry only)
2.5 Cups of boiling water
1 one pound bag of frozen mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries and raspberries)
1  17.6 oz container of plain 2% or full fat Greek yogurt
2-3 mashed bananas
1  8oz. can of crushed pineapple in its own juice (no sugar added)
1 non-stick bundt cake pan or other type of round pan with a whole in the middle

Butterfly Effect, Vanessa McLaughlin, Jello-Mold


1. Boil water.
2. Open packets of Jell-O and place powder in large bowl.
3. Pour 2.5 Cups of boiling water over the Jell-O powder.

Butterfly Effect, Vanessa McLaughlin, Jello-Mold
4. Stir until all Jell-O is dissolved.5.  Add frozen berries, mashed bananas and pineapple (with the juice) to the liquid Jell-O and stir.
6. Ladle 1/3 of the Jello/fruit mixture into the bundt pan.

Butterfly Effect, Vanessa McLaughlin, Jello-Mold



7. Place pan in the refrigerator for at least half an hour to let Jell-O mixture set.
8. While this is setting, keep the bowl with the other 2/3 mixture in it over a burner on the lowest heat setting, so that it does not set, but stays liquid.
9. When a half hour or more is over, spoon yogurt over the set Jell-O in the bundt pan, and spread evenly, making sure it touches the outer and inner edges.
10. Slowly ladle the rest of the mixture over the yogurt.
11. Let set for at least 2-3 hours.
12. To remove from pan, fill kitchen sink about 1/3 full with hot water.
13. Place pan in the water (jello side facing up).
14. While the pan is in the water, run a knife around the inner and outer edges.
15. Take a plate larger in circumference than the pan.
16. Take pan out of the water, and place plate on top of pan.
17. Quickly flip pan and plate over, keeping them together, in one swift motion.
18.  Jell-O mold should slide out of the pan.
19. Decorate on the sides and middle with fresh berries if desired.

NOTE:  If making in advance, keep Jell-O in bundt pan until at least an hour or less before serving.


Recipe Courtesy of: The Butterfly Effect

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Ready to get Hammered?? And Chiseled??


The wait is over! Christmas came early this year...Today is Hammer and Chisel release day! It's a new month, the end of an amazing year, and I know you have already starting planning your new year's goals. But why wait? Seriously? Because of Christmas? That's nonsense. Honestly, you can keep telling yourself that forever. There's always gonna be the next holiday, the next birthday, the next celebration. That's part of the hustle. And that's why you have to stop looking at getting fit and losing weight as short term. It has to be a lifestyle. You must embrace it. What does that mean? Enjoying everything in moderation. Following the 80/20 rule, eating clean 80% of the time and splurging the other 20%. Fitting in your workouts even on a holiday or special occasion. Its 30 minutes, you can totally do it!

I know my husband and I have been a bit too lax in the nutrition department, more like 50/50, not 80/20 thus we have both put on some unwanted lbs. And I'll be honest my husband is not too thrilled with cardio day in and day out. With 4 kids, its virtually impossible to spend an hour or more at the gym everyday, so this is the perfect solution! We can do this in our living room!

So what is this program all about?

The full name is The Master’s Hammer and Chisel, but who is keeping track! It was created by a mastermind Beachbody trainer team made up of  21 Day Fix's Autumn Calabrese and Body Beast's Sagi Kalev. They wanted to create a program that combined strength training, agility, core strength, cardio, tone and overall stamina to create a master workout. They wanted to create a program that would create a true athlete! That's just what they did! Autumn took her famous colored containers from the 21 Day Fix and 21 Day Fix Extreme and her new cook book, Fixate and incorporated them into the nutrition portion of the H & C program.

The program will include:
  • 30-40 minutes workouts
  • Weight Training & Cardio included in the program
  • 3 Different Meal plans to choose from.  Each meal plan varies for each individual and their goals.

Equipment needed:

  • Dumbbells (variety of weight depending on your personal fitness level)
  • Bench or stability ball
  • Band and door attachment or pull-up bar






Check out Tarah's results: >>>>>>>>>>>>>>
She had recently had a baby and is a mom of 3. She committed to the meal plan, the workouts, and went all in for 60 days. Incredible!






Want results like this?? 
And these <<<<<<<
You're in luck. I have been selected as a coach to host an exlcusive Test Group. What does this mean? This mean you can be the first to test this program and your results will be submitted to Beachbody headquarters. You will be registered to win $500 and have the chance to be featured in the Official Hammer & Chisel infomercial!




Fill out the application to apply below:
 
 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Black Friday Blowout!

 
Just had to share that Beachbody has released their annual Black Friday sales early and you don't want to miss these! I'm talking full fitness programs for prices you don't want to miss: Turbo Fire, Insanity, P90x3, and more 25%-85% OFF!! And there's tons of equipment and apparel on sale as well.



Just click here and choose Holiday Specials to check them out while they last! http://bit.ly/1MARS0X

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Parmesan Oat Crusted Chicken

Our clean eating alternative to a fried chicken. Perfect for the whole family!

Ingredients    
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 c. uncooked old fashioned rolled oats
  • 2/3 c. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 t. paprika
  • 1/2 t. ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil (optional)*
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (optional)*
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley (optional)*
  • 1/2 c. olive oil
  • 6-8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/2 thick all over
  • cooking spray


Directions
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Chop the garlic. Add oats, cheese, salt, paprika, & pepper (also basil, oregano & parsley, if desired, and mix. Pour olive oil in a shallow bowl or pie plate. Dip chicken in olive oil, let excess oil drip off, then roll chicken in oat mixture .  Place chicken in large, shallow baking dish coated with cooking spray. Pat the oat mixture into the chicken gently; this helps it make contact with the olive oil to help the coating brown and crisp. If it looks dry, give it a light coating of cooking spray. Bake uncovered for approx. 20-25 minutes until an instant-read thermometer registers an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Remove from oven, and let chicken rest for 5-10 minutes to allow juices to settle.  These freeze well, even coated with the oats first!
 
 
We even loved it served with Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce!
 
 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup mustard
  • 6 Tbs. honey (add more if desired)
  • Dash salt
  • Dash cayenne pepper

Directions:

Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl and store in the refrigerator. Use it as a dip, sauce, topping, dressing, or anything!

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Sweet Kale Salad

Oh my Kale!! Yes, that's right. I was afraid of kale but I decided to try it anyway. I put this salad together in about 10 minutes, and wah-LA!!! Divine. Seriously, even the kiddos loved it!


Ingredients
  • 1 bunch kale, ribs removed and finely chopped (about 4 cups packed)
  • 2 cups cabbage, shredded
  • 2 cups broccoli, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
 
    Poppyseed Dressing:
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, plain (I used 2%)
  • 1 tsp raw honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 lemon, zest and juice of
  • 1/2 small orange, juice of
  • 1 tbsp poppy seeds
  • 1/2 tsp garlic or onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt


Directions
  1. Add kale, cabbage, broccoli, brussels sprouts and endive (if using), cranberries to a large salad bowl. Toast pumpkin seeds in a small skillet on low-medium heat until lightly brown, about 2 minutes. Stir frequently and watch closely not to burn. Transfer to a salad bowl.
  2. In a small bowl or salad dressing shaker, add Poppyseed Dressing ingredients and whisk or shake to combine. Pour over salad, gently stir and serve.
  3.  
    Storage Instructions:
     
    Refrigerate assembled salad for up to 24 hours. Dressing can be refrigerated for up to 5 days and added to salad as needed.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Crockpot applesauce

This time of year, apples are delicious and why not make up a batch of homemade applesauce. Your kids will love it and your house will smell amazing! Super simple too!

**any apples will work, but this is the combo I prefer:

 favorite blend.

Ingredients

2 Honey Crisp apples5 Golden Delicious apples7 Gala apples2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from about 1 large lemon)1 teaspoon ground cinnamon1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Directions

Cut the apples into quarters and slice out the pieces of core in each one. Leaving the peels on or off is your choice. If leaving them on, be sure to wash the apples very well (even if buying organic). If you want a chunkier applesauce, I'd suggest peeling all the apples so you can leave the sauce with texture and not get bits of peel all over.

In a large, oval slow cooker (about 7- to 8-quarts), toss the apples with the lemon juice, cinnamon and nutmeg. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours.

Blend with a handheld immersion blender or by scooping the applesauce into a blender (may need to do this in batches - take care since hot foods expand in a blender so only fill it half full).

Serve warm, room temperature or chilled. This will keep well-covered in the refrigerator for a week or two and can be frozen for a couple of months

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Crockpot Pulled Pork Tacos



You know the feeling. You’re in the car on the way home from work and you start thinking about dinner… and how the thought of cooking a meal from scratch sounds like too much work. And there’s the Chipotle you are just about to pass by and wouldn’t that be so much easier than cooking something at home tonight…

Not if you have pulled pork cooking in your slow cooker, just waiting for you to arrive home and assemble the most delicious tacos you have ever had in a mere 15 minutes! Healthier, tastier, cheaper, and even more satisfying than picking up Chipotle. (Trust me.)

*I made a 6 lb pork shoulder because frankly, that was the smallest my grocery store had! This made enough for 3 meals for four people (8 tacos/meal). To freeze the leftovers, put the pulled pork in an airtight container and cover with the juices from the slow cooker (there will be a lot of them!). When ready to eat, defrost and drain the liquid.

 
 
Juicy pulled pork cooks to perfection in the slow cooker. Then, it's fried until crispy and topped with fixings in a toasted corn tortilla. Authentic, easy, and fresh!
 
Ingredients:
  • For the pulled pork:
  • 2-3 pound pork shoulder*
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • plenty of salt and pepper
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • juice and zest of one orange
  • For the tacos:
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • fixings (chopped cilantro, chopped onion, sour cream, salsa, hot sauce, avocado, etc.)
  •  
Instructions:
  1. Rinse and dry the pork shoulder.
  2. Mix together the cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.
  3. Rub pork with olive oil until coated, then rub the spice mixture all over the pork. Place in slow cooker.
  4. Mix together the onion, jalapeno, garlic, and orange zest. Spread on top of the pork.
  5. Squeeze the orange juice on top of the pork and place the orange rinds in the slow cooker.
  6. Cook on low for 8-10 hours or high for 4-5 hours.
  7. When the pork is done cooking, take the meat out (careful- it will be very fall-apart tender!) and place on a large platter or dish. Pull meat apart with two forks.
  8. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and fry the pork until crispy.
  9. Meanwhile, toast corn tortillas over gas burners, in the oven, or in a skillet.
  10. Add pork to tortillas and top with fixings.
Notes
*Pork shoulder is also called a picnic cut or a Boston butt. I don't know why. Also, I used a 6 pound shoulder and saved enough leftovers in my freezer for two meals. If you want to freeze, put the meat in an airtight container and top with the juices from the slow cooker. Defrost and drain when ready to use!

Crockpot Mexican Stuffed Peppers

These Crock Pot Mexican Stuffed Bell Peppers are easy and delicious, and you don’t need to turn on the stove or the oven to prepare them. Just chop and mix and they are ready to go. This is perfect because, you do not need to brown the ground beef ahead of time. When I use my slow cooker, I am always looking for a way to avoid precooking. The slow cooker insert takes up enough room in the dishwasher, I don’t want another pan in there too!

Finely dice 1/2 of a yellow onion. Pour a cup of prepared enchilada sauce into a heat proof measuring cup and add diced onion. Heat the onion/enchilada sauce mixture in the microwave for about 5 minutes to soften onions. I usually cover mine with a paper towel to avoid splatters.
Cut the tops off of four bell peppers, I use yellow, red or orange as the green bell peppers are not as sweet. Remove stems and seeds and dice the tops of the bell peppers.
Pour 1/3 of a cup of water into the bottom of the crock pot and nestle bell peppers in.

 
In a large mixing bowl, combine one pound of uncooked ground beef, onion/enchilada sauce mixture, diced bell peppers, 1 cup of shredded jack cheese, 3/4 cup of cooked mexican style rice, 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper.
 
Fill bell peppers with ground beef mixture and top with more cheese. Don’t forget that you need to have the water at the bottom of the crock pot.

 
Cook on low for about 6 hours.
 

The bell peppers are soft, but not too soft, and the filling is so flavorful. I kept my bell peppers kid friendly, but you can bump up the flavor by adding a little canned chipotle chile in adobo if you want more spice!
 
We topped ours with a little bit of plain greek yogurt and green onion, and had a simple salad on the side.
 


Serves 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours


Ingredients:
4 bell peppers
1 pound of 85 percent lean ground beef
1/2 of a yellow onion, diced
1 cup of canned enchilada sauce
1 1/4 cup of shredded jack cheese
3/4 cup of cooked (leftover) mexican rice
salt and pepper
sour cream and diced green onion for toppings


Directions:
1. Finely dice a 1/2 of a yellow onion. Pour a cup of prepared enchilada sauce into a heat proof measuring cup and add diced onion. Heat the onion/enchilada sauce mixture in the microwave for about 5 minutes to soften onions.
2. Cut the tops off of four bell peppers. Remove stems and seeds and dice the tops of the bell peppers.
3. Pour 1/3 of a cup of water into the bottom of the crock pot and nestle bell peppers in.
4. In a large mixing bowl, combine one pound of uncooked ground beef, onion/enchilada sauce mixture, diced bell peppers, 1 cup of shredded jack cheese, 3/4 cup of cooked rice, 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper.
5. Fill bell peppers with ground beef mixture and top with more cheese.
6. Cook on low for about 6 hours. You can test mixture with meat thermometer for doneness. It should be cooked to 160 degrees.
Note: You must used pre-cooked rice. I used leftover mexican rice,  but you can also use cooked white rice. Just bump up your seasoning so that the mixture is not too bland. You can add chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, chipotle in adobo. Whatever sounds good to you!

Clean eating while traveling


Speaking of travel, I’ve been receiving lots of requests recently from my health coaching clients and readers for a post about how to eat clean when away from home. I figured that if they’re wondering, some of you might be as well. So today, I’m giving you a peek into how I maintain my healthy eating regime while away from my own kitchen, as well as some tips to help you to do the same.

#1 Prep and Packing 
Again, it probably won’t shock you that I think about packing snacks before a single article of clothing goes into my suitcase. After years of traveling to and from my home in the Middle East each summer, I’ve become good at knowing which foods sit well in my stomach on plane rides and which ones cause problems. On any given flight, you’ll likely find these things in my hand luggage:


  • apples
  • baby carrots
  • sliced cucumbers, celery, and bell peppers
  • hummus
  • dried fruit
  • whole grain crackers
  • Simply Bars (dairy free, gluten free, vegan, non GMO, kosher protein bars) and/or Quest bars (no added sweeteners, gluten free, whey-based protein bars)
  • gum (not great for digestion but good for ear soreness when the plane takes off and lands)


  • #2 Scope Out the Surroundings

    The first thing I do once I find out I’m going to be visiting a new city is look for healthy food options near where I’ll be staying. (I know, I know – most regular people would probably look for other fun attractions but this is a foodie whose blog you’re reading!) Thanks to Google, food blogs, and restaurant review sites like UrbanSpoon, OpenTable, and Trip Advisorit’s really easy to find healthy places to eat before you arrive. But it’s not just restaurants I look for. I also map out grocery stores nearby so that I can stock up on fresh items like produce and yogurt when I arrive, and keep them in my hotel fridge.

    #3 The Grocery Store
    After getting settled in at my destination, I stock up on a few groceries at the nearest grocery store. If your hotel room has a fridge, clear it out and re-stock it with some of the following items:
    • pre-chopped veggies
    • fruit
    • Greek yogurt (or non-dairy yogurt if necessary)
    • hummus
    • salsa
    • tuna pouches
    • pre-cooked chicken strips (look for organic with no funny ingredients – can be an expensive option, but if you really don’t want to spend much money on eating out in restaurants, it’s important to have a good source of protein!)
     If you’re lucky enough to have a Whole Foods nearby, or another grocery store that has pre-made salads or a salad bar, you can package up a few things for yourself and store those in your fridge as well. Not having access to a cutting board and knife isn’t a good excuse for skipping your greens!

    #4 Always Eat Breakfast
    Breakfast is the most important meal of your day. Always start your day with a healthy breakfast. Eating a breakfast that includes whole grains, protein and nutrient-rich dairy foods gives you a boost of energy and jump-starts your metabolism. Your metabolism slows while you sleep because your body is not burning energy the same way it does when you are awake and active. Avoid the hotel breakfast buffet and stay away from the fast food places for breakfast. Locate a supermarket or health food store near your hotel or motel and stock up the mini-refrigerator with some low-fat milk and yogurt, fresh fruit and whole grains like granola. Breakfast shake drinks can also be a good choice, especially if you don’t have a refrigerator in your room, or if you are running late for an activity. Add some flavor and texture to your morning low-fat yogurt with granola and fresh fruit, such as blueberries. If you have to eat out for breakfast, choose a whole grain cereal with low-fat milk or a whole grain bagel.


    #5 Drink Up
    Stay hydrated, and make sure you take in enough fluids. The stale air circulating in airports makes me super dehydrated, so I always bring an empty shaker bottle with me through security to fill up at the drinking fountain before boarding my flight. I pack all my travel day meals in my carry-on so I'm set in case of any delays.

    #6 Eat a treat a day
    You’re on vacation, so of course you want to indulge. There’s nothing wrong with that, as long as you place limits on it. By committing to a single decadent treat per day, you won’t feel as though you missed out, nor will you feel uncomfortable by the end of the trip.



    Of course, nutrition goes hand in hand with fitness. While I don’t normally stress about workouts when I’m traveling (unless of course I’m doing a race!) I aim to make my holidays as active as possible. This typically means doing a lot of exploring by foot, or using a hotel gym if I happen to be staying in a hotel. 

    Wednesday, October 7, 2015

    Slow Cooker Chili Verde

    Perfect for a chilly, fall day. This chili recipe is a family favorite. It not only smells amazing, but its actually good for you!!
     
    Let me know what you think!
     
     
     
    Ingredients
    • 2 lbs. Tomatillos, husks removed
    • 2 Poblano or Anaheim Peppers
    • 2 T. Olive Oil
    • 3 lb. Pork Shoulder Roast, cut into 1" cubes
    • 2 Yellow Onions, cut into thick chunks
    • 5 Garlic Cloves, chopped
    • 1 t. Oregano
    • 1 T. Cumin
    • ½ t. Paprika
    • ½ t. Chili Powder
    • 2 t. Coarse Real Salt
    • 1 bunch Cilantro, bottom stems cut off
    • 4 oz. Can Green Chilis
    • 2½ C. Chicken Broth
    • Lime wedges, to garnish
    • Avocado Slices, to garnish
    Instructions
    1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with tin foil. Place the tomatillos(halve them if they are large) and the poblano or anaheim peppers on the lined baking sheet and place them on the top rack of the oven.
    2. Roast for 25-30 minutes, or until the tops are charred.
    3. While the tomatillos and peppers are roasting, heat the olive oil in a frying pan over high heat.
    4. Add the cubes of pork to the oil and brown on all sides. Place the pork in a slow cooker.
    5. Reduce the heat to medium/high and add the onion. Saute for 2 minutes, or until softened. Add the garlic, cumin, paprika, and salt and saute for another minute. Add the chicken broth, bring to a simmer and pour the mixture over the pork in the slow cooker.
    6. When the tomatillos and peppers have finished roasting, remove them from the oven. Remove the charred skin from the peppers and place them, and the tomatillos in a blender along with the cilantro and green chilis. Blend until smooth.
    7. Pour over the pork in the slow cooker.
    8. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.
    9. Check seasonings before serving and add more salt, if needed.

    Monday, September 14, 2015

    Slow Roasted Apple Pork

    I know you all wonder, how does she do it? Working mom of 4, business owner, fitness instructor, and she finds time to cook?!? Yep, I sure do. But the crockpot is my best friend. Seriously you just set it and forget it and you get to come home to a house that smells amazing! Today's dinner was a play on that fall teaser weather we had this weekend. Apples are in so here's what I came up with. Its Paleo, Clean Eating and Gluten Free! This recipe was so easy to prepare, it took me less than 10 minutes to assemble. It's delicious served with roasted veggies, we chose asparagus!


    Prep time: 
    Cook time: 
    Total time: 
    Serves: 6
     
    Ingredients
    • 1 (3-4 lb) pork tenderloin
    • 2 large granny smith apples. sliced
    • ½ cup honey
    • 2 tbsp cinnamon
    Instructions
    1. Slice slits in pork tenderloin.
    2. Place 1-2 apple slices per slit.
    3. Place ¾ of remaining apple slices in bottom of crockpot.
    4. Drizzle ½ of the honey over apple slices.
    5. Place pork on top of apple slices.
    6. Sprinkle cinnamon over everything.
    7. Place remaining apple slices on top and drizzle the remaining honey over everything.
    8. Place lid on and cook on low for 8 hours.
    9. Remove from slow cooker, slice and serve with apples on top.

    Friday, September 4, 2015

    Have you ever been in this place?





    You all know about my recent disclosures on my battle with binge eating and since coming out with that video, I have received countless messages of encouragement and support. BUT also surprising (and even comforting) were messages of others who have shared the same struggle I do! Many of us must be fighting those same demons.

    My coach gave me a book on Monday night..."Made to Crave," and let me tell you it has rocked my world and I've only just started it. I'm a religious person, I go to church and I love God. I rely on my faith to get me through life's up and downs. BUT there is more...Tell me if you can relate?

    ********************************************************************
    ~Has food become more about frustration than fulfillment?
    ~Do you desire to beak the cycle of “I’ll start again on Monday,” and feel good about yourself today?
    ~Do you wish you could stop agonizing over numbers on the scale and make peace with your body?
    ~Would you like to replace rationalization that leads to diet failure with wisdom that leads to victory?
    ~Do you want to reach your healthy goals and grow closer to God through the process?
    This book is the missing link between a woman’s desire to be healthy and the spiritual empowerment necessary to make that
    happen.
    *********************************************************************

    And then I got an idea! More purpose was born. Of course I love helping others lose weight and be active to reach their personal goals, but what if they are fighting the same struggle I am. We all know that clean eating and exercise are the keys to losing weight, but why then aren't we all successful?
    I know exactly where you are at...You know certain things about yourself need to change, but it is easier to make excuses.

     Rationalizations are appealing-
    -- I'm good in every other area.
    -- I make so many sacrifices in other areas already.
    -- I need treats as a comfort in this season of life; I'll deal with my issues later.
    -- I just can't give this up
    -- The Bible doesn't specifically say this is wrong.
    -- Its not really a problem. If I really wanted to make the change I could; I just don't want to right now.
    -- Oh for heaven's sake! Everyone has issues. So what if this is mine?
    And on and on and on.

    Excuses get us nowhere fast. So the cycle continues, day after day, week after week, year after year. Monday comes and goes. A whole lifetime could be spent making excuses, giving in, feeling guilty, resolving to do better, then mentally beating myself up for not sticking to my resolve, feeling like a failure, and then resigning to the fact that things can't change.

    If you are struggling with emotional eating and/or binge eating, if you can relate to my sentiments above ...this next group is for you. I'm going to help you find the “want to” in how to make healthy lifestyle changes. How?? Using this book and the principals I'm learning. This isn’t about becoming a smaller-sized person, but rather helping you become a person who craves Jesus and His truths as the ultimate filler of your heart. The rest is just a bonus!

    I’m inviting to join me and other women in taking a stand against Satan and his lies and come to really believe the truth that God is good and only through him, can we find fulfillment for those cravings. I'm inviting you to be encouraged. I’m inviting you to take a stand and fight. I’m inviting you to pursue God with all that you are just as he pursues you. I've never been more excited for a group, EVER! We start 9/21

    You in?
    If so, I'm buying the book for the first 10 people to commit.


    Now is the time, fill out the application below, and I will be in touch soon!


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    Friday, August 28, 2015

    My battle with B.E.D. -- Real, raw, & uncut



    binge eating disorder; binge; eating; struggle; bingeeating; B.E.D.; truth; inspire;So by now, you’ve probably watched my “coming out” video and you’re reading this, perhaps because maybe you can relate or maybe you have no idea what B.E.D. is.  You might be asking yourself  “Why now? Why is she sharing this now?” That answer is for many reasons. Have you ever lived with a secret and it literally eats you alive all day everyday. Your every move is an effort to conceal that secret  at all costs. It’s exhausting. Fear has been holding me back for quite some time. Over the past few days, a series of events led me to the decision to share my struggles. A gentle tugging on my heart from God initiated it, followed by random messages placed in my life to confirm what I thought I was being led to do. A fellow coach encouraged us to share our struggles as he did his, a message in a fortune cookie even spoke to me. My counsel has encouraged me to admit my struggling as that was the first step in overcoming it. So here I am, being vulnerable and spilling my truth.

    binge eating disorder; binge; eating; struggle; bingeeating; B.E.D.; truth; inspire; failure; succeed
     Up until now I have hidden my failures... because I thought if people knew they would see ME as a failure...

     But today --- I choose to flip my switch... and instead of thinking about who might judge, hate on, or dislike me... I thought about who might be inspired, who might SEE THEIR TRUTH and be compelled to make changes... who might join me and be an overcomer... who might see my past failures and see that success IS possible for them too...

     
    Let’s start with the basics. First, what is Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.)?

    Binge eating disorder is characterized by compulsive overeating in which people consume huge amounts of food while feeling out of control and powerless to stop. The symptoms of binge eating disorder usually begin in late adolescence or early adulthood, often after a major diet. A binge eating episode typically lasts around two hours, but some people binge on and off all day long. Binge eaters often eat even when they’re not hungry and continue eating long after they’re full. They may also gorge themselves as fast as they can while barely registering what they’re eating or tasting.

    The key features of binge eating disorder are:

    • Frequent episodes of uncontrollable binge eating.
    • Feeling extremely distressed or upset during or after bingeing.
    • Unlike bulimia, there are no regular attempts to “make up” for the binges through vomiting, fasting, or over-exercising.

    People with binge eating disorder struggle with feelings of guilt, disgust, and depression. They worry about what the compulsive eating will do to their bodies and beat themselves up for their lack of self-control. They desperately want to stop binge eating, but feel like they can’t.

    Binge eating may be comforting for a brief moment, but then reality sets back in, along with regret and self-loathing. Binge eating often leads to weight gain and obesity, which only reinforces compulsive eating. The worse a binge eater feels about themselves and their appearance, the more they use food to cope. It becomes a vicious cycle: eating to feel better, feeling even worse, and then turning back to food for relief.

    So now how does this look in my life. It comes and goes. This vicious cycle of my adult life has been yo yo dieting. Gaining, losing, gaining again, losing again.  The key with B.E.D. is literally losing control. I have been closet eating for some time, years. Understand that this is very embarrassing for me to admit, I’m ashamed of my behaviors. I’m talking a stop after work at the store to grab 2 candy bars and consume them before getting home (hiding the wrappers, the evidence).  I would hide in the bathroom to consume pop tarts, chips, ice cream, you name it! In excessive amounts. During the actual binge, I often feel numb, like I’m on auto-pilot. Many times I don’t even realize the excessive amount I just ate until it’s over. (Keep in mind, I don’t binge on broccoli and carrots. It’s always the unhealthy foods that give me the best high-a temporary high that leads to an overwhelming sense of guilt and disgust.) Sad thing is, usually this takes place at night, after I have had a beautiful day of eating good-for-you foods. I am sabotaging myself. ‘Why again?’ I’d say, ‘You have to be better tomorrow. This is going to be my last time.’ Problem is, I say that every time.  

    The symptoms of my B.E.D are behavioral and emotional. Behaviors include stockpiling or hiding food I can later eat in secret. I eat normally when I’m around others, but often gorge when I’m alone. Emotionally, if I’m feeling stressed or tension, the only relief I get is from eating.

    Part of the therapy to start overcoming my B.E.D. has been identifying my triggers. Mostly, my reasons for binge eating are an attempt to manage unpleasant emotions such as stress, depression, loneliness, fear, and anxiety. When I have a bad day, it can seem like food is my only comfort. Binge eating can temporarily make feelings such as stress, sadness, anxiety, depression, and boredom evaporate into thin air. But the relief is only very fleeting. Other triggers are certain places-convenience stores for sure, the mall…certain situations are as well—being home alone at night, having a date night with Jared, birthday parties.

    binge eating disorder; binge; eating; struggle; bingeeating; B.E.D.; truth; inspire; failure; succeed

    Another recommendation I’ve received is to get support.  You're more likely to succumb to binge eating triggers if you lack a solid support network. Talking helps, even if it’s not with a professional. I’m ready.

    It’s difficult to overcome binge eating and food addiction. Unlike other addictions, your “drug” is necessary for survival, so you don’t have the option of avoiding it. Instead, you must develop a healthier relationship with food—a relationship that’s based on meeting your nutritional needs, not your emotional ones.

    teambeachbody; tbb; healthcoach; coach; binge eating disorder; binge; eating; struggle; bingeeating; B.E.D.; truth; inspire; failure; succeed

     Maybe you’re struggling with the same thing. Maybe you have a completely different struggle. Either way, RADIATE your truth unapologetically, knowing that when you do... you are living God's purpose for your life.

    I whole-heartedly believe that God can turn every test into a TESTIMONY, every mess into a MESSAGE, every trial into a TRIUMPH, and ever victim into a VICTOR!

     Your story has a PURPOSE and oftentimes when shared with others, it not only heals YOUR LIFE by setting you free from the burden that comes with trying to keep it all together and play perfect... but it in turn helps set others free when they realize they are NOT ALONE in having a similar experience.
    binge eating disorder; binge; eating; struggle; bingeeating; B.E.D.; truth; inspire; failure; succeed; bebrave; brave
    If you're struggling and need support, let's battle this together.
     
    Fill out my application below to join me on a journey to healthier you. It won't be easy, but I promise, it will be worth it!
     

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    Wednesday, August 19, 2015

    Clean Buffalo Chicken Dip

    This is a family favorite and the options are endless -- top a salad, top a whole wheat pizza crust, throw in a wrap or on whole wheat bread or just stick some in a bowl and enjoy by itself!! It's good cold too!




    2 lbs. Chicken breast
    2 c. Plain Greek yogurt
    1/4 c. Hot sauce (or to taste)
    1/4 c. Cheddar cheese (or your choice)
    Seasonings to taste (garlic, onion, sea salt)

    Cook chicken in crockpot on low for 4-6 hours, shred, then add all other ingredients.Yummo!

    Tuesday, August 18, 2015

    Quick Kids Lunch- Turkey, Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato, & Avocado Roll ups

    busymom, kidslunch; back to school; cleaneating; paleo;


    I've spent the last few weeks preparing for something that I can pack in the kids lunches or grab as a quick bite for myself since starting our (almost 100%) grain free, dairy free, and sugar free lifestyle. Planning the transition from lunches with sandwiches to lunches without sandwiches was a task at first, but I’ve been surprised at how easy it is to make a lunch that doesn’t involve bread. Here's one for the first day of school! The kids can't wait to break in their new lunch boxes tomorrow. Turkey BLTA roll ups (Turkey, Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato, and Avocado). They're easy, the kids love them, and they fit perfectly into their lunches. Triple Bonus!


    Ingredients:


    4-6 slices Turkey Cold Cuts (Applegate or Boar's Head are my favorites)
    1 Plum Tomato, seeded and cut into strips
    2 slices Bacon, cooked and cut in half lengthwise and then cut in half width wise
    1 Avocado, sliced
    Baby Spinach Leaves

    Instructions: Lay out a turkey slice on a plate or cutting board (or whatever you want, you don't have to listen to me). Layer 3-6 spinach leaves (depending on size or how much you like spinach) in the center of the cold cut, width-wise across the short side (see picture above because I suck at explanations). Layer a few strips of tomato, 1-2 strips of bacon, and 1 slice of avocado on top of that. Starting at the left side, flip one end of the turkey slice to the right, over the layers you just added. Then roll that folded side over to the non-folded side on the right to create the roll. Just pick it up and eat it. No toothpicks necessary to hold it together. *NOTE* Be gentle with rolling so you don't rip the turkey slice or else food will start falling out.

    For more recipe ideas like this as well as tips for busy mamas on the go, fill out the application below to learn more about my Back to School Busy Mamas challenge starting 8/24!


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    My hair!!

    One of the things I've been getting asked about a lot is my hair. The color, the curls, how I had the courage to shave my head, LOL, it goes on and on. I have decided to do a few posts/tutorials on hair and makeup on my blog to share the love. I believe everyone is beautiful and confidence can be learned. Truly your hown happiness is what matters, and not what everyone else thinks, ya know? If you can get to a place where you're truly happy with yourself on the inside, it will radiate to the outside as well.

    Here's a quick demo of how I curl my hair with the straightener. The curls hold a lot longer and I love the look. It's honestly all in the wrist.





    What other beauty/health tips would you like to know more about??

    Wednesday, July 29, 2015

    Black & White No Bake Cookies

    Got this recipe from a fellow coach and these are a favorite in our house!!!! Like Dangerously good! When I make them I have to double this recipe or they're gone the same day. They're packed with protein,  antioxidants, and super foods and they actually freeze wonderfully with quick simple clean up. 


    What you need:

    • 1 scoop chocolate Shakeology
    • 1 scoop vanilla Shakeology
    • 1 cup natural peanut butter
    • 1/2 cup honey
    • 1 cup quick oats

    What you need to do:



    1. Melt peanut butter and honey in a medium sauce pan.
    2. Once melted, remove from heat.
    3. Add Shakeology, then oats and mix well with a rubber spoon.
    4. Spoon on to wax paper - form into balls and I flatten slightly with a fork.
    5. Optional - roll "cookie" into minced nuts or unsweetened coconut flakes.

    Tuesday, July 28, 2015

    Sweet Potato, Bacon, & Egg Salad






    Ingredients:

    1mediumsweet potato(es), diced
    2largeegg(s)
    8slice(s)bacon, diced
    4tablespoon(s)dill, fresh, finely chopped
    2tablespoon(s)mayonnaise, (you can make your own with this recipe)
    2tablespoon(s)lemon juice
    • Place eggs in small sauce pan, cover with cold water, cover pan and place over high heat until just before boiling.
    • Remove from heat and let sit, covered, for 13 minutes.
    • Immediately rinse in cold water, peel eggs, dice and set aside.
    • Meanwhile, dice sweet potato.
    • Heat skillet over medium-high. When hot, add bacon and cook for 5 minutes. Add diced sweet potato and continue to cook until potato is tender and bacon is fully cooked.
    • In a small bowl, mix dill, mayonnaise and lemon juice.
    • Add eggs, sweet potato and bacon, and mix. Serve warm or cold.

    Apple Breakfast Bake


    This one is delicious, not too sweet and perfect to make the night before and reheat in the morning. Something so filling and delicious about warm apples, cinnamon, pumpkin...Oh my!!
     
     
    Let me know what you think!
     
     
     
     
    Ingredients
    • 3 apples, chopped
    • 3 bananas
    • 8 eggs
    • 1 cup almond flour
    • 1 can pumpkin
    • 1 can coconut milk
    • ¼ – ½ cup maple syrup, to taste
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
    • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda
    • ¼ cup slivered almonds
    • ¼ cup coconut ribbons

    Instructions Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
    1. Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish with coconut oil.
    2. Spread chopped apples in the baking dish.
    3. Combine bananas, eggs, almond flour, pumpkin, coconut milk, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and baking soda in the Vitamix, and blend until smooth.
    4. Pour egg mixture over the apples in the baking dish.
    5. Sprinkle slivered almonds and coconut ribbons on top.
    6. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour or until the eggs are set.
     



     

    Tuna Salad


    Tuna Salad
     

    Here’s what you need: 

    6 cans (4-5 ounce) Tuna, drained

    1/2 cup Homemade Mayo

    1/3 cup Diced Pickles

    Salt

    Pepper

    Optional Ingredients: 

    3 Boiled Eggs, diced

    1 Apple, diced



    Here’s what you do: 

    1. Put tuna, mayo, relish and optional ingredients in bowl. Mix well.

    2. Add salt and pepper to taste.

    3. Eat with veggies, in a lettuce wrap, or as Jeremiah likes it, with a spoon!