Monday, July 30, 2012

Clean Eating Yam Protein Muffins

So, it's really hot outside. Middle of July in Arizona hot. Add monsoon season in there and random nights with lots of rain and get hot, muggy, sticky weather. Do you know the last thing I feel like doing in such conditions? Cooking! Turning on my oven in painful and so is going outside to grill... BUT the good news is in two short weeks I will be on the beach in San Diego for an entire week. And because of this glorious vacation I know I need to kick it up a notch the next two weeks so that I can be bathing suit ready! So, I sucked it up and turned on both the oven and grill yesterday-- quite the sacrifice, I know :) Over the next two weeks I'm going to drop my carbs down just a touch and swap out some of my oat-y,rice-y type carbs for yams and veggies. I will also be sure to get all my cardio in, lots of water, and kick the protein powder. 

A couple of my favorite ways to eat yams are shredding them on a grater and cooking them like hashbrowns or baking them and then adding some coconut oil and cinnamon. YUM x 2. After today though, I have a new favorite way of eating yams... Yam muffins! They're really simple, nothing fancy about them- but they are a great grab and go when you need carbs and protein but don't want something starchy.


Ingredients 
3 cups mashed yams
6 egg whites
2 scoops vanilla whey protein
1 T cinnamon
2 tsp all spice
1 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt 


Directions
1. Pierce 3-4 yams with a knife a few times and place in microwave for 10 minutes.
2. Place yams in mixer and mix until yams are mashed. The skin usually separates at this point and I take out about half the skin. 
3. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. 
4. Place mixture in muffin tins and bake for 20 minutes at 350. 

This made 12 muffins, each with about 70 calories, 10g carbs and 7g protein.

Keep in mind, the base of these is yams, not flour so they are not going to be your typical "muffin" consistency. 

What do you guys do to get ready for a beach vacation? 

Friday, July 27, 2012

Clean Eating Brown Rice Pudding & Rest Day Advice

I'm not sure if I've said this before (okay I've said it a hundred million times) but I hate rest days. As we were eating breakfast yesterday morning, B and I were talking about how we feel more tired on rest days than on days that we work out. It didn't make sense to me that we both felt that way, especially because we get to sleep in a bit on days that we don't hit the gym. I figured there was a logical explanation for it, so I asked one of my most trusted fitness resources, James Wilson. Here is what he had to say: 

" I honestly think it is a combo of things. Mentally we know the day will be a rest day, so I think that puts us in a more relaxed state. 
Also, as I am sure you are noticing, when the workouts get more intense, the body burns through nutrients more rapidly and creates a negative balance, this leans you out well, but it also creates a need for energy, so on that rest day, your body will be using more energy to repair and get the balance to normal. Because of the energy being used to repair, it draws from your overall levels and that may be why we feel more sleepy and fatigued.You are welcome to do yoga, go for walks or light jogs and this should help keep your energy higher." 

It all makes sense now, and you can bet your life I will be doing something on my rest days from now on, I hate when I feel tired and lazy!  

I thought I would be super nice and leave you with a recipe that was requested by the fiance. (Yes, it is so weird/cool to say that!) Rice pudding is one of his favorites, so I 
went to the drawing board and this is what I came up with!


Ingredients

1 cup brown rice, cooked
2 cups unsweentened almond milk
6 packets Truvia
3 tsp cinnamon
2 pasturized egg whites
1/4 cup sugar free maple syrup


 Directions

1. Place cooked rice in saucepan with almond milk and cook on low for about 20 minutes. Make sure to stir consistently to prevent sticking. At the end of the 20 minutes your rice should be thick and creamy, if it's not add a little more almond milk and continue cooking. 
2. Add in remainder of ingredients and stir/cook for another 2-3 minutes. 
3. Turn burner off and place a lid on sauce pan. Allow to steam and then cool. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

WIAW and Motivation

Now that I'm a little more than halfway through my current program, I realize that I really like being on a program and having a pre-set workout schedule. James' workouts are intense. Like, feel like you're going to puke then feel like you got ran over by a bus the next day, intense. I don't think I've pushed myself this hard in a while and I've determined it's because of the structured program. When I'm doing my own thing, I might stop at 8 reps when I could have done 10, or maybe not do a full 30 seconds of jump rope, etc. For some reason when James Wilson is telling me I have to do 3 sets of 10 reps with 15 spidermans on each side, I feel like I HAVE to do it! No option, James says. I of course know that it's all mental and I'm sure I could push myself on my own, but hey if it helps then I'll take it! Anyway, I thought I would let you all know that in case you feel like you may be lacking motivation in the gym, it might be time to jump into a program!





I started my day off with some blueberry pancakes and sugar free syrup! For those of you that follow me on Instagram, you know the recipe! 


Rice cake with peanut butter and cottage cheese for snack. Surprised? :)


Open faced tuna sandwich made with greek yogurt, mustard, and topped with tomato.


Turkey zucchini burger and baby carrots dipped in red bell pepper hummus for snack.


I had planned on making a new chicken recipe for dinner but when I got home from work my chicken hadn't defrosted so I had to resort to plan B. Seasoned up some salmon with pepper and lemon juice and threw it on the grill. I had broccoli and cauliflower on the side! 

Happy Wednesday! 









Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Clean Eating Tuna Salad with Creamy Avocado Dressing

I love my dog. I love my dog. I'm just going to keep telling myself that over and over. 


Yes. That was a Tom. 
B and I ran to get a Red Box after dinner last night and just jumped in the car quickly, not thinking about doing our usual close every door in the house routine. We travelled the whole quarter of a mile to the Red Box and came right back home, and in those 9 minutes my dear friend Charley snuck in to our closet and found my poor Tom. 
I love my dog. 

One good thing about my night was that dinner I mentioned was a good one! I threw together a salad with a dressing in this months Oxygen Magazine and we had dinner in less than 15 minutes. 


For the salad I mixed low sodium tuna in water with greek yogurt and pepper, and also added tomato and turkey bacon bits. It was so easy and you can easily play around with it by adding whatever veggies you like best. I didn't follow the original dressing recipe to a T, so here were my modifications:

Ingredients:
2 ripe avocado
1/4 cup EVOO
1/2 cucumber
1 T minced garlic
Pepper and salt to taste 

Toss all that in your food processor and you get a great creamy dressing without the cream, or a great alternative to mayo in a sandwich or wrap. I was sure to use it sparingly since it is a little high in fat, but they are the healthiest of fats, of course! 


Thursday, July 19, 2012

VLOG!

Quick Vlog to catch up on a couple things I've been wanting to tell you about!


Here is the link to the fat flush water. You should also be sure to enter the DA Active giveaway!  Have a great Thursday :)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

What I Ate Wednesday- Taste Testing!

This week marks week 6 of the Body Earned program and I kid you not, I wanted to cry at the gym yesterday. Week 6 starts with body part training and yesterday focused on shoulders. By my last set my arms were shaking so bad (but I refused to drop in weight, of course) that I can honestly say it was my  mind that pushed me through those last few reps, not my shoulders! Whew. Anyone else still trucking along and on week 6?




Food yesterday was a little out of the ordinary, well just lunch I guess :)


Breakfast started the day just as it always does, egg white scramble and oats!


Cottage cheese and brown rice cake with a little peanut butter for snack. Typically I have 2 rice cakes, but I didn't know what lunch would entail so I just stuck with 1.


B and I went to lunch at the venue that we are going to host our engagement party at! We had actually never eaten there before, so we tried a bunch of stuff- I only managed to take pictures of 4 things but we actually tried about 7 different appetizers. Everything was beyond amazing and I am SO excited for our party. So excited. 


Although I wasn't particularly hungry after our big taste testing lunch, I had leftover coconut chicken with spinach and a dollop of greek yogurt for a snack.


For dinner I brought back an old favorite, clean eating shepherds pie. Ketchup was added after this picture was taken. Why wouldn't it be?

Before bed I was having a hankering for cottage cheese for some reason, so I had a little of that with 1 tbsp peanut butter. 

If any newly weds have ANY wedding planning advise for me, I will gladly take it! 




Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Oxygen Magazine Coconut Lime Chicken

Our plane was delayed an hour on the way home from California over the weekend, so of course I spent that extra time planning out meals and finding new recipes to try. After reading my Oxygen from cover to cover (twice) I book marked 3 new recipes to try, this one being one of them. I love this recipe for a couple of reasons, first it requires minimum ingredients, second it requires minimum prep, and third it finally gave me an excuse to buy coconut flour. I've seen so many recipes that use coconut flour but I've just never got around to buying it... but now that I have it, watch out! I followed the original recipe almost to a T, but I did add my own touch (of course) with the Greek yogurt sauce.


Wraps (I used about 20 oz of chicken so I quadrupled this recipe) 
5oz chicken breasts
1tbsp coconut flour
1tbsp shredded unsweetened coconut
1 tsp coconut oil
Juice of 1/2 a lime
1 leaf Romaine lettuce

Directions
1. Place coconut flour and coconut into a bowl and set aside. 
2. Cube chicken then toss chicken in mixture until fully covered.
3. Heat skillet to medium and add coconut oil.
4. Add chicken and cook through, adding lime juice 1/2 way through. 
5. Place in lettuce leafs and add sauce. I served with brown rice.


Sauce:
1/4 cup Greek yogurt
Juice from 1/2 a lime
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder 


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

What I Ate Wednesday!

I know I say this every time I come back from vacation, but it feels so great to be back in my routine. I do have to say I did a great job eating clean while we were away even though we ate out often, but I will admit there were quite a few adult beverages consumed... as there should be! :) You only get engaged once (hopefully!) !
I have noticed since my photo shoot when I really leaned out, it has been much easier to stay lean. James Wilson's kick butt high intensity workout program probably has something to do with it too, but I'm eating lots of food and a good amount of carbs and still feel great and ready for the beach! Speaking of the beach, since I will be there this weekend I'm making sure to be 100% this week with nutrition and workouts... here's what my eats looked like yesterday. 



Breakfast was the usual. 4 egg whites scrambled with veggies and cinnamon toast



Meal 2 was cottage cheese and a brown rice cake with all natural peanut butter. Have I mentioned I'm newly obsessed with brown rice cakes? Well, I am.


Meal 3 was the usual too. Turkey zucchini burger and a yam with tiny bit of coconut oil and cinnamon. Never gets old! 


I switched up my beef and broccoli recipe just a little and did half steak half chicken and it turned out amazing!


Dinner was tilapia seasoned with Ms. Dash fiesta lime and a side of veggies. I was extremely tempted to make myself some of the fish tacos that B had for dinner, but then I though of myself in a bikini this weekend and opted for the veggie carbs instead. I will be having fish tacos for lunch today though! 


Casein pudding and 1 tbsp of peanut butter right before bed. 

I think I'm all caught up on emails and such, but I want to try to record a vlog for you guys in the next couple of days, so if there are any burning questions you have or anything you want covered please let me know by leaving a comment! Have an awesome Wednesday! 





Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Our Engagement Story!

AHHHH!!! I still can't even begin to wrap my head around the fact that we are engaged! It was such a surprise and it couldn't have gone any better. We landed in Monterey California on Wednesday morning and after dropping our luggage off at the beach house, my family, B and I headed to Big Sur California to go hike at Pfeifer Falls. It was about a 45 minute drive and looking back I don't know how he stayed so calm with the ring in his pocket! We got there and hiked for a while before we found the waterfall. The area where he actually popped the question was roped off and you weren't supposed to go up there but he insisted I went with him, so I figured what the heck. When we got up there I turned my back to him to step up on a rock so that we could take a picture and when I turned back around he was down on his knee. It took a minute for me to realize what was going on, but once I did I freaked and started crying like a baby. The best part was that my family was in the distance and were able to get some awesome pictures!







We are going on a celebratory trip to Southern California where I'm from to relax and hangout with two of my best friends, and then when we get back we'll start thinking about the million things we need to do to plan a wedding! Crazy! Here are a couple more pictures from our vacation.... 




And then of course there is the ring! It has been requested of B that I don't post a photo... yet. He had my band and halo custom designed and it hasn't come in yet! 2 weeks until I get it, I'm so excited! 




Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Clean Eating Peanut Butter Cookie Dough

I like things simple. If you've made any of my "clean treats" you've probably  noticed that they often contain the same ingredients, things that as a clean eater you probably already have in your pantry and fridge. Every once and a while I'll switch something up to keep it interesting, but if you're like me 1. You go to the grocery store way too often as it is and 2. When you see a recipe you want to try, you want to try it right then and there. Here's another Pinterest inspired recipe that you should have all the ingredients for, and you really don't even need a spoon, I've found my finger works great :)



Ingredients
1 cup oat flour
1 scoop protein powder
6 packets Truvia
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup all natural peanut butter
carob chips (optional)


Directions:
1. Place everything in mixer and mix well. 
2. Place in fridge for 30 minutes, and get your dipping finger ready! 

Monday, July 2, 2012

Double Trouble, JULY and Bulk Cooking

If you saw my instagram post yesterday, then you know I was a big dummie yesterday. I had planned on going to Pilates on Sunday afternoon, but in my head Pilates was stretching and maybe some light core exercises. Because of my misconstrued notion of Pilates, I went ahead and did the last workout for week 3 of James Wilson's Body Earned Program on Sunday morning. Big mistake! Pilates absolutely kicked my butt! It would have been challenging had I not already fatigued my muscles with full body circuits a few hours before, but oh my gosh, 10 minutes in I was already sweating and dying. Even though I was dead when it was over, I really liked it and definitely want to do it more often to build up my core strength and work on my flexibility.... I'll just have to make sure I count it as my workout that day!

Going to my first Pilates class got me thinking about how it is already July. JULY! Someone please tell me how that happened. Anyway, this means we are in the second half of the year and I always like to take some time to look back to January 1 and think about all the things I wanted to accomplish this year. I'm excited that I'm doing pretty well on my resolutions to step outside my comfort zone. Starting a new workout program that is a totally different style was a huge step outside my bubble, and in my personal life I made a big career change--totally out of the confort zone. Both of these decisions have made me SO happy I can honestly say I'm absolutely loving living out of my bubble. 

After realizing it was July 1st yesterday, I then realized that meant we are headed out of town in a couple days! My parents got a beach house in Norrhern, California so B and I are headed up there to celebrate the 4th of July. I could not be more excited. It is 65 degrees and sunny in CA... and it's like 112 degrees in AZ so it will be amazing to get out of the heat. I wanted to relax all day yesterday but when I realized our trip was quickly approaching and that I probably wasn't going to have time during the week to get stuff done, I decided doing a little bulk cooking was probably a good idea. 


I made banana coconut bread, apple cinnamon muffins, (I can't get enough of these lately) chicken fried rice, and some extra chicken breasts for lunches. This should easily get us through until Wednesday and I'll be able to take some of the muffins with us too. One huge perk of having my family on board with clean eating is I know the fridge at the beach house is already stocked with the foods I love! 


And here is the reason I don't bulk cook too often. It makes a huge mess out of my kitchen and gives me anxiety! Ahh!! 


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