Well really I should say weeks 2 and 3 because life got away from me a wee bit last week and I never got around to sharing last week’s so we’re summing up 2 and 3 today!
We’ve enjoyed some travels, some “not so Country Heat” approved meals and a heck of a lot of dancing!
A girls trip followed by a Leadership Retreat to Deep Creek MD meant a bit of improvising, planning, sacrificing, staying strong through the temptations and allowing myself to indulge along the way.
I can’t say I’ve been perfect but I will say I have made progress.
The workouts have been the “easy” part for me with no equipment needed I have been able to squeeze them in at hotels, on my patio iwth my kiddos, and everywhere in between!
The nutrition hasn’t been ON POINT but I know what I need to do to finish out my 30 days STRONG and the meal plan is where it all starts.
With my daughter’s first day of Kindergarten coming up (enter a few trickling tears) I’m planning two crockpot meals and a lot of repeats this week! Veggie Egg cups are one of my favorite “prep in advance” meals which can be a snack, breakfast or even lunch!
They’re great hot or cold and on-the-go or even prepped in a 9×13 baking pan for easy clean up!!!
I’m trying a new crockpot burrito bowl recipe (thanks Pinterest!) and focusing on my portions, planning and prep to get me through this final stretch!
I know how important nutrition is and I feel the push to regain my focus and prove to myself that I can be disciplined enough to FOLLOW my plan and finish strong!
Excited to see what the next phase brings!
If you’ve been interested in trying Country Heat and/or joining my upcoming Accountability group and the new Health Bet challenge group – simply fill out the application below for more information!
I’ve had a lot of people ask me about the next program I am going to complete.
I spent December – February rocking out to Hammer & Chisel (8 week program and 4 weeks of the Chisel guide) followed by 8 weeks of 22 Minute Hard Corps…so the big question is – what’s next?
This is honestly a tough one for me…and I’ve been thinking a lot about it.
At first, I was going to jump right into the 21-day fix. With summer fast approaching I know this program will get me to where I want to be. Its my “soulmate program”. The one that got me hooked on living a healthy balanced lifestyle and the one that helped me lose those post baby pounds!!!
Then I thought about PIYO. I’ve done this the last two summers and enjoy ditching the weights and using my own body weight to work myself towards new boundaries and find new strengths. It challenges me in a new ones – one like no other program and I get to combine my love of yoga with fat & calorie burning low impact cardio!
But when I got down to picking something to kick off with tomorrow – I opted for the dabble route!
There are so many amazing workouts at my finger tips with Beachbody On Demand through the Club Membership and I LOVE the change up. New trainers, new workouts, new muscles, new soreness, new results. I thrive on training my entire body and switching it up. And while the 21-day fix gets me there…I like the variety too and options available on demand!
On Demand offers a Challenge Du Jour so you can still “follow a program” but switch things up too! And honestly – that’s what I love about my home workout programs! I have the ability to choose what to do when to do it!
I have some of the best fitness trainers in the world at my fingertips to help me reach my goals!
But no matter what program I follow – the KEY is the nutrition.
I adapted the portion controlled “system” nearly 2 years ago and it has become my way of life.
Yes I sometimes veer of course.
Yes I splurge.
Yes I make mistakes.
And yes there are those really rare days that I just plain old eat like crap!
But I live and learn and move forward. So matter what tune I am exercising too – I will be fueling my body with the foods that make me feel like supermom…afterall – don’t we all need a little extra super powers here and there!!!
Tomorrow kicks off my DROP 10 Challenge and I want to invite YOU to join ME and a few other ladies as we prepare for the launch of SUMMER and finding that inner confidence to look and feel good this summer!
Ok, these may not sound amazing but don’t doubt me yet…
These little perfectly balanced protein pancakes – aka – MANCAKES have taken off in my house! It started when I was helping my hubby with his meal plan and was in the middle of a 3-day refresh. I watched him make them for 3 nights and decided this would be my first non-vegan food item when I was finished! And I have been hooked on them ever since!
Here’s the thing – they’re so versatile! You can add more or less oats…you can do just eggs, just egg whites or a combo of egg and egg whites…all depending on your own preferences and goals! Plus my little guy likes them so its a bonus score!
I’ll share with you the 21-day fix/Insanity Max: 30 approved recipe I use along with my husband’s.
WHAT YOU NEED
Her recipe (21 day fix approved) – Yields 4-5 pancakes
1/4 cup quick oats – 1 Yellow
4 Egg whites – 1/2 Red
1/2 cup berries or 1/4 of a banana – 1/2 Purple
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. cinnamon
His recipe – Yields 12 pancakes
1.5 cups oats
6 Egg whites
1 banana or 1 cup berries
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. cinnamon
WHAT YOU NEED TO DO:
Preheat pan to medium heat.
Combine the Egg/Egg whites, oats, vanilla and cinnamon. You can do this in a bowl if you want to leave the oats ‘whole’ or in a blender if you like a smoother, more pancake-like consistency. Stir or pulse a few times to combine.
Add fruit and pulse until you get the desired consistency you like!
Using a 1/4 cup, pour into pan, cooking each side about 2 minutes or until you see the edges forming. Flip once. Let cool and store in air tight container or eat immediately!
The one thing I LOVE about these is that you can eat them hot or cold, in the car, or running around – which fits my lifestyle perfectly!!!
My husband prefers a banana in his and blended smooth where I prefer the berries and more like a oat consistency.
Honestly though – you can’t go wrong! They’re so tasty and the fact that they’re also gluten free is just an added bonus!
If you’re ever looking for more clean eating meal ideas, tips, recipes or just motivation – join my next health and fitness accountability group! I’m a big believer – there’s power in numbers!!!
6 weeks down and 2 to go! I can’t believe I am in the homestretch!!!
This last week was a little different but challenging yet still!
I had an absolutely AMAZING weekend in the ‘burgh for Pittsburgh’s Super Friday and our Dream Team Celebration Saturday.
I got to meet our CEO Carl Daikeler:
I got to meet AND workout with the creator of the 21-day fix – Autumn Calabrese and try out her new 21-day fix EXTREME:
Of course we worked out…
But we also celebrated and ate, and ate, and ate some more!
So needless to say I needed a jumpstart for week 6 – enter a simple little cleanse – the 3-day REFRESH!
Sometimes its hard to get back in the swing of things. I’m a routine type of person. Keep me on my routine and I’m as happy as can be. Stray from that – and watch out! It wasn’t easy jumping back in…I could feel the bad nutrition choices lingering in my body but I knew the easiest way was to JUST DO IT – so I did!
Monday was a typical day and then I started the 3-day refresh on Tuesday. The guide says to do “moderate exercise” so I stayed with the modifier in Insanity Max: 30 on both Wednesday and Thursday but went full out Friday morning – what can I say I was feeling REFRESHED!!!
If you haven’t heard of this yet or given it a try – please consider it! I am not big on diets, cleanses etc… but this is different!
Let’s face it – sticking to any goal you’ve set for yourself, can be a challenge, but ones involving health and fitness tend to be the hardest.
There are temptations EVERYWHERE! School, work, birthday parties, kiddos snack bags, social gatherings, the gas station, grocery store etc… Luckily, there are some great tools available to help us keep closer tabs on how well we’re doing and make sure those goals become results!
I was recently talking to Andrea Powers of Oscar Health Insurance, a Health Insurance provider in the New York/New Jersey area who uses technology to make things simpler! She asked the question – “How has technology helped you manage your health” and it didn’t take long for me to come up my top 3 resources and subsequently 3 things that keep me going on a day to day basis!
1) Online Accountability Group
My 90 Day Challenge group results
I began my personal fitness journey March 2013, looking to shed a few post baby pounds and gain some energy so I could be more present in my kids lives!
I started with the 21-day fix home workout program, incorporated Shakeology and Clean Eating AND joined a Challenge group. Quickly something just clicked. I started looking at all food items in relation to the colored container they fell into and really learned portion control and I found myself setting my alarm daily so I could get my workout in and share with everyone else in the group when I completed it and how great it felt. I started seeing results…quickly! What was this secret sauce? THE COMBINATION OF ALL 3. That combination of regular, daily exercise, balanced, clean eating, and the accountability and support of a challenge group – GOT ME SUCCESS!
I had tried exercising but could never stick to it. I had (thought) I was eating healthy (although it wasn’t as “clean” as I thought) but I never had a group of people right there to help me and support me as well as guide me and give me tips on how to make this whole thing work!!!! After all, you can only eat so many steamed veggies and grilled chicken!!!!
You see, I had purchased my challenge pack under my Coach, and she immediately added me into this closed group on Facebook. Although unsure at first I found what had previously been missing from my fitness routine – Support & Accountability! Sure my husband was incredible support, but there was something about this private group. We were all working towards our goals, some the same and some different, but we all had goals in mind and we knew what we had to do to get there and we were going to do it – TOGETHER!
These little online accountability groups – all ran through a closed Facebook group – were the missing piece to my success! And I didn’t stop with my first one either! After seeing how this all fit together, I began coaching others and helping them become happier and healthier too! I continue to run these challenge groups and continue to thrive off the success of my challengers!!! And the ripple effect keeps on going!!!
Another BIG key to my success comes from being PREPARED.
2) Meal planning
Example Meal Plan
Yes – as simple as it may be, the meal plan word document I create each week helps me more than I could have ever thought! I’ll admit I wasn’t too excited about making a meal plan when it was suggested to me in my first challenge group, but after “winging” it more times than I’d like to admit I found out that I do a LOT better when I write it down. Typing it all out in a word document in one week increments and seeing the full week at a glance really helped me in the balancing each week. I am all about healthy, clean eating but I’m also all about balance in more ways than one. I am a busy mom and for some reason that 5:00 hour seems to be that time when the kids NEED everything and I’m TRYING to cook. Enter – meal prep and planning!!! The upfront time on Sunday or Monday is more than worth it later in the week plus it saves me $$$ too as I know exactly what I need to buy and helps reduce those impulse purchases at the store and/or wasting produce we don’t need! Its a win win all around!
There are a lot of great apps out there to track your daily food but I stuck with a simple meal plan!!! That’s what works for me!
3) Fit Bit
It didn’t take long for me to realize that healthy eating and regular exercise just made for a healthier family all around. My husband bought me a fitbit for Mother’s Day and it was months before that little band was taken off, with the exception of a quick overnight charge! Not only did the fitbit help me realize how much activity I had during the day, it also helped me guage my weight, and sleep! There is just something about that sense of accomplishment when you feel the buzzer go off when you’ve hit your daily goal!
In talking to Andrea she mentioned the MisFit program they offer their customers. These MisFit bands sync with their app which helps members earn up to $240 a year simply by hitting daily fitness goals! How cool is that – you get paid to WALK!
I hope you can see from the above that staying on track with your health and fitness goals doesn’t have to be complicated. It may take some upfront planning, some time, and a commitment that today is the day, but with a little support and the right tools, you have the opportunity to be the happiest and healthiest YOU!
If you would like to join my next challenge group or if you just have questions in general about getting started or jumping back in wherever it is that you left off, please fill out the application below and tell me a little bit more about you!
Whew – I am happy to say that the best of the holidays are almost behind me! I love the family gatherings and sharing in all the celebrations but my oh my there has been food EVERYWHERE!!! I have enjoyed every last bite but I am ready to gear up and get back fully focused for Week 4 of Insanity Max: 30!
I am also very happy to say, despite the holiday chatter – I didn’t miss a workout and I even scored a few accountability partners along the way! My mama joined me Christmas morning and my hubby and I jammed out together while out of town with our laptops side by side playing our different workouts! Hey – you gotta make it work!!!
I love when my healthy living lifestyle rubs off on others! And with a trip to Texas thrown in this week I was totally banking on an outdoor run with my mother-in-law but mother nature was not on our side 😦
The workout schedule followed a similar layout to weeks 1 and 2 but Tabata Power was replaced with Tabata Strength. So it had a similar concept with going hard for 20 seconds followed by a 10 second jog/break but just as challenging!!! I continue to max out on the push ups series but I will say that I am noticeably getting stronger and even though I max out I am able to take a quick break, or go to the modified for a short bit then I’m right back in it!!!
One question I keep getting is about the max out times…So WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO MAX OUT???
So…when you first press play on the DVD you will go as hard as you can for as long as you can. When your form breaks, when you need to stop and rest or when you have to jump down and start following the modifier – you have maxed out. But you’re not finished! You can pause the workout, take a drink but you get right back to it!!! Sometimes a quick water break is all it takes and I am able to jump right back where I left off and others I take that break and stick with the modifier for a bit – but regardless you still finish the full 30 minutes!!! I hope that helps!
I’m anxious to see how I can improve upon my times as this will be my last week in this phase before moving on to month 2!!!
My week 4 meal plan is similar to prior weeks adjusting for a travel day in the air and on the road for Monday and a few get togethers with friends later in the week! One thing I’ve learned is when you host events – you get to pick the meals!!! Our NYE dinner will be cooked at home, by yours truly, with some filets, risotto and green beans! No need to go out to enjoy a little splurge!!!
(Although this meal plan is titled “Insanity Max:30” it is also 21-day fix approved. The color coded portion control containers correlate to the nutrition guide of the 21-day fix and Insanity Max:30!)
And there you have it friends, week 3 is a wrap, week 4 is planned, and I am mentally gearing up to close out 2015 with a BANG!
If you’re ready to get started on your own journey or just need a fresh start for the new year, join my New Year, New You Accountability group!
Fill out the application below…we’ll hit the ground running on January 5th!!!
Another week down and another week stronger! I know it may sound silly but just two weeks in and I can already see improvements. My max out times are improving and there are moves that I couldn’t do in week 1 that I nailed in week 2. This seems crazy to me!
The workout schedule follows the same from WEEK 1:
Monday: Cardio Challenge
Tuesday/Thursday: Tabata Power
Wednesday: Sweat Intervals
Friday: Friday Fight Round 1
Saturday: Pulse and Abs
Sunday: (much anticipated) REST!!!
Needless to say, I am enjoying this program!!!!
I will admit – although I haven’t missed a workout, I had a few struggles this week with the nutrition department! I’m sure you can relate…A party here, dinner out there and the usual things that come with the week before Christmas! But boy, I can feel the difference! Even though I used my usual tactics like drinking my shakeology before I go and drinking more than my required amount of water, we had our MOMs Club Christmas party where I enjoyed a few too many cookies, we had a late afternoon trip to the mall that resulted in dinner out and a cheesecake shared with my hubby, a girls day lunch at the Olive Garde – THOSE BREADSTICKS!!!! Need I say more?! And I can’t tell you the last time I had nachos but Dave and Busters nailed that loaded platter – and my fingers can feel the increase in salt!!!
So here’s to week 3! I cannot change the week before but I can certainly focus on the week ahead! It will be another challenging one in regards to nutrition but that just means I’m going to need to really focus on the first half of the week and keep my goals on top of my mind through “the most wonderful time of the year!”
So what’s my plan????
Here is my HOLIDAY WEEK GAMEPLAN and my tips for you to help stay on track:
1) MORNING WORKOUTS – I’ll be continuing with my early morning workouts, and yes, even on Christmas morning! Why not? Just because its a holiday doesn’t mean you should sacrifice your own self health!
2) SHAKEOLOGY – I’ll still start EVERY morning off with Shakeology. I know how much it helps my energy and cravings…which will need a little extra control this week! It will go with me when I travel and I’ll keep packets with me so I don’t have any excuse not to eat healthy while we’re “busy” this week! Besides, it tastes like a treat anyway!!!
3) BE OPEN – I’ll share my plan with my family – and all of you! Having others to help keep me accountable always helps me reach my goals!!! Hopefully I’ll even have some company for my workouts!
4) BALANCE – I’ll be doing a little 80/20 with my nutrition. 80% of the time I am going to be SPOT and the other 20% I will enjoy my Christmas favorites!! But that’s it – JUST my favorites. I know there will be lots and lots of goodies all around but they’re not all my favorites. So I’ll pick and choose and enjoy my indulgences. I’ll pack my snacks, especially when traveling, and load up on the veggies every chance I get!
5) WATER – Keep up with my 1 gallon per day! I’ve been drinking about 1 gallon a day for a few weeks now. I fill my Shakeology shaker cup 6 times and I’m there. Keeping my water intake up helps avoid the mistake of thirst for hunger!
6) HAVE FUN! – I will enjoy the holidays. I will enjoy the time iwht my family, I will enjoy the energy I feel when I start my day off right and fuel my body, and I will enjoy those little buckeyes – in a reasonable portion 🙂
7) PACK THE DVDs – I’ll be traveling with my Insanity Max:30 DVDs. I love how portable my home workout programs are but this one is even easier as I don’t even have to worry about any equipment! I just need a little space and I’m all set!
Week 3’s meal plan is certainly a bit different but even with the holiday and travels I’m still planning out! I will not surrender and throw my hands up on the week in its entirety! (This meal plan is also 21-day fix approved in addition to Insanity Max:30 -just a little extra bonus!)
Remember – “A Sunday well spent brings a week of content”
Take a little time today to PLAN!!! I hope you all stay strong and have a VERY MERRY week!
All I can say is thank goodness today is REST DAY!
I am officially 1 week in on Insanity Max:30 and now I can see why Shaun T referred to this program once as “plauteu buster” – its amazing! Don’t get me wrong, its intense and hard and challenging but you can feel while you’re working out how you are using so many different muscle groups. You don’t just squat or just lunge or just hold a plank…you’re combining these moves and maximizing your results!!! My little secret to keep pushing forward:
I’d say the one muscle group I can feel working harder than before is my core – you use your core in so many of the moves and I am already starting to see changes in my body!!! SCORE!!!
So for those of you wondering a bit more about the program…week 1 went a little something like this:
I was a little disappointed in myself on Monday for maxing out almost one minute sooner than when I first tried the Cardio Challenge when my package arrived but I think it was just the extra excitement I had pushing me along the week before. But at the same time – I know I can do better and that is most definitely on my goal list for this week!!!
Tabata Power was twice this week and I was solid on the first part, week on the pushups, great on the core work but struggled on the tricep dips. Needless to say it was easy to identify my weak spot and know where I need to focus and strive to improve!!!
Sweat Intervals did just that – it made me SWEAT!
I’ll admit – I was a bit nervous to try the Friday Fight Round 1. I had heard it was “hard” but then again – this program is far from easy!!! I had to give myself my own little pep talk that morning and focus on how its all mind over matter. I remember reading how your mind quits far before your body – so keep pushing even when you don’t think you can do anymore. I told myself – “when I think I’m done – I’m going to do three more” and that mentality worked! I was exhausted but I maxed out in the 11th minute of this workout – much longer than any of the others. Granted I was really struggling to push myself after I first maxed out and did almost all modified for the remaining time but it really helped me realize – its a game – its MIND OVER MATTER!
Pulse is an optional Saturday (could be a rest) workout and although I when I finished FRIDAY FIGHT I was already set on a rest day Saturday, my body told me the stretch and low impact moves would help me recover. And let me say – it was 20 minutes well spent!!!! Plus I like to stick to my routine every day – not just during the week! I feel accomplished and energized to start my day. And despite getting up earlier than I “have” to – I am more productive and actually feel more energized!!!
And that brings us to today – Sunday – my first rest day of week 1. I am happy with how things went thankful to have the time to reflect and focus on week 2. These workouts are so great but I know you won’t get results without nailing the nutrition. Here’s my week 2 plan***:
***Remember all you 21-day fixers out there – this meal plan would also work for those of you in the first bracket of that nutrition guide – bonus 🙂
I kept a lot of things similar to week 1. I wanted to switch up some of the dinners and lunches, but my Shakeology for breakfast remains consistent. Shakeology is far and away my favorite meal of the day but any time I can get a green in first thing I am happy! So I’m sticking with the “if it isn’t broke don’t fix it” approach and leaving my breakfast the same!
I also continue my daily yogurt bowl for one snack and veggies and eggs for the other. The one thing I knew I would be repeating this week is zucchini pasta! Its become one of my favorite snacks, sides, meals – it does it all!
We have a busy weekend visiting friends one day and traveling to my home town for my Dad’s birthday but I will pack my healthy snacks and do my best to make good choices! Thankful for my 7-day Clean Eating accountability group for the Holidays group kicking off tomorrow…there’s power in numbers!!
And there you have it – week 1 is behind us and week 2 is ready to rock! Here’s to a fantastic week!!!!
If you are interested in Insanity Max:30 or any other Beachboy workout program and would like to get 1:1 coaching and support along with motivation and accountability, please fill out my challenge and accountability application below! I share tips and recipes and I will help you with the one thing I always found so difficult – MEAL PLANNING! Remember – your health and fitness success is 80% nutrition. You can get all the results and support you need right in your own home – and you don’t have to do it alone! My 7-day clean eating group starts tomorrow and my next 60 day full support group kicks off January 5th! Its not too early to reserve that spot!!!
My mother in law used to make the best squash and truthfully, that’s how I got hooked on this little veggie…cooked in butter, with a few eggs and topped with cheese – Ahmazing – tasting!!!! Problem is – as delicious as it was it just doesn’t fit into my lifestyle anymore. I saw some delicious bright yellow squash at the farmers market over the weekend and couldn’t help but snag a few up! I’m getting pretty good at taking a healthy spin on things so with a few tweaks this old favorite is back in the weekly rotation – as a new, improved, 21-day fix approved side dish!!!
WHAT YOU NEED:
Makes about 3-4 servings; 1 green container and 1 teaspoon on the 21-day fix meal plan (I don’t count the egg whites towards a red because there is so little!)
2-3 large squash, sliced
1 small onion
1 TBS olive oil
3 egg whites
Sea salt to taste
WHAT YOU NEED TO DO:
Heat the oil over medium heat for about 2 minutes
Add the squash and onion and place the lid on the pan. Cook for about 20 minutes, continually stirring and chopping as the veggies cook. You’ll notice the squash really cook down!
I like to cook it until all the water evaporates, but if you don’t like it cooked as long you could always drain out some water once the squash is cooked to your liking
Move the squash to the side of the pan and add the egg whites – scramble the egg whites and combine with squash. Top with a little sea salt if desired and you’re ready to go!
I love to serve this side with Turkey meatloaf and a baked sweet potato. I also eat it by itself as a side with lunch – you can’t go wrong!