Wednesday, January 30, 2013

What I Ate Wednesday!

I thought I would jump back on the WIAW train this week so that you can see how my eats will change over the next 7 weeks leading up to my shoot. Not a whole lot will change until the end, but it's interesting for me to look back at too! I actually just looked back at the last time I did this to refresh my brain and get some ideas. 
 
Started the day with the usual. Followed by a pumpkin protein shake for PWO.
 

Mid morning snack was 1/2 cup greek yogurt with cinnamon and truvia and 2 slices of cinnamon toast.


My new favorite (super easy) mixutre of turkey, zucchini, asparagus, carrots and brown rice. Cover this in hot sauce and you're good to go :)


2 Chicken fingers, yams, and baked green beans for snack #2. Remember last week when I said I wasn't a huge fan of green beans? They're growing on me.


Oh, look. There they are again! Bison burger with almond cheese for dinner! My fav!!

The day ended with casein pudding + peanut butter.

I think this will be my last week not counting calories. blaaahhh. Actually, it won't be too bad and I'll fill you on how I'm going to do it next week!


Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Clean Eating Savory Chicken Crepes

This is the ultimate low carb recipe, and I love it. B actually inspired me to make it when we were out to eat at one of our favorite restaurants. He always orders the Philly Chicken Crepe from Pita Jungle (if you're ever in AZ you HAVE to eat here) and is absolutely in love with it, so I wanted to try to recreate it at home. I think I got pretty darn close!  The best part about this recipe is you can literally eat if for any meal, from breakfast to dinner, and it makes a lot so we've had leftovers for a couple days.
 
 
 
Ingredients
3 Chicken breasts, cubed
2 T EVOO
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
2 T fat free creme cheese (Optional)
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1/2 T onions powder
1/2 T paprika
1tsp ground parsley
pepper to taste 
 
For Crepe:
2 T almond flour
3 egg whites
splash of almond milk
1/2T garlic powder
 
 
Directions:
1. Place olive oil in pan with chicken and all spices
2. Cook chicken until about 1/2 way done, then add mushroom, onion, and bell pepper.
3. Continue to cook until chicken is cooked through and onions are translucent.
4. For crepe, combine egg whites, almond flour, and almond milk in a bowl and whisk together.
5. Heat a pan over low heat, then add crepe mixture. Make sure the mixture spreads across the pan as thin as possible.
6. Slowly cook crepe until it begins to bubble, then using a spatula, flip it over as you would a pancake.
7. Cook for another 2-3 minutes then place on plate adding chicken mixure. Add 1 T creme cheese (I obviously skipped the creme cheese) then fold in half. Add more chicken and more creme cheese on top of the crepe and serve.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Getting Ready for Spring Break!

I WISH I was getting ready for spring break! Sheesh.

I went to dinner with my sister Bree on Friday night and she asked me to come up with a Spring Break workout plan for her and her roommates who are off to Mexico for spring break. (Rough life.) I figured there are others that can benefit from a few guidelines to getting in spring break shape, so-- here it is!

Disclaimer: For those of you that typically follow me, you know that this isn't necessarily the way I eat or work out-- my workouts can be found here and my recipes here. Below are just guidelines for someone who doesn't typically work out but wants to put some effort in to it over the next 6 weeks or so. I do not support crash diets and would much rather people go about toning up the right way. Of course, I always encourage a fit and healthy lifestyle but I'm also realistic and know that I was a college student once too, and counting calories and macros were pretty much the last thing on my mind :)

Nutrition Guidelines
Kick the Top Ramen and beer. Just kidding. But seriously. You don't need to go on any crazy diets, just start doing your best to eat protein, healthy fats, healthy carbs, and lots of veggies. Here's what a days worth of food may look like (remember, this is just a suggestion):
Breakfast: Oatmeal with blueberries or diced apples and scrambled egg whites. Make your oatmeal with unsweetened almond milk, and add Truvia and cinnamon to spice it up a bit. Throw some hot sauce on your eggs, and you're all set!
Snack: Apple and a handful of almonds. Not an almond fan? Try cashews or peanuts, just make sure they're unsalted.
Lunch: Grilled chicken salad with a light balsamic vinaigrette dressing, and half an avocado.
Snack: Think Thin bar. (I don't typically recommend store bought bars, but I know as a student you're always on the go, and these are the best option out there). If you do have time to do a little baking, try out my cinnamon apple muffins, or chocolate peanut butter bars. Just toss 2 of these in a ziplock and throw them in your purse. They're a perfect snack to eat between classes.
Dinner: Any protein source you like, chicken, fish, steak, turkey, shrimp etc. with veggies and brown rice. 
The most important part is going to be making this realistic for your lifestyle. Chances are you're not going to have time to make a full dinner every night. So, maybe you and your roommate throw your Betty Crocker hats on Sunday night and power through a few things that can hold you over throughout the week. Make a big batch of brown rice, grill or bake up a bunch of chicken breasts, and chop all your veggies into pre portioned little baggies. Anything that's going to make your life easier during the week, and keep you from buying that bag of Hot Cheetos (cough cough, Bree) when you're hungry.
Notice I put the nutrition guidelines first. 80% of the results you see will come from the way you eat over the next couple months. Just something to think about!

Workouts

I've split the workout plan into an upper body and a lower body. I suggest taking a day off in between each one, so your schedule would look something like this: Monday-upper Tuesday-lower Wed- off Thurs- upper Friday- lower Saturday- off Sunday- your choice. Maybe you hit up a yoga class, take a jog with your roommate, or maybe you take another day of rest.

Upper body:

- 3 sets of 10 bicep curls



- 3 sets of 10 tricep kickbacks

Standing Bent-Over One-Arm Dumbbell Triceps Extension

- 3 sets of 10 shoulder press

Dumbbell Shoulder Press

- 3 sets of 10 lat pull down

Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown

- 3 sets of 10 pushups
- abs: do these back to back as many times as you can, 3 sets
            crunches, bicycle crunches, leg raises
- Cardio- 20 minutes of incline walking OR 12 minutes of HIIT- 30 seconds sprints followed by 30 second rests

Lower body:
- 3 sets of 10 jump squats (squat down and then push off your heels and jump as high as you can, then land in squat position and repeat)
- 3 sets of 10 walking lunges, hold dumbbells in your hands for an extra challenge.

Walking Lunges with Dumbbells

- 3 sets of 10 leg extensions

Leg Extensions

- 3 sets of 10 hamstring curls

Lying Leg Curls

- 3 sets of 10 calf raises

* Remember to eat protein and carbs both before and after your workout, even if it's just a little something.

(Photos courtesy of Bodybuilding.com)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Vlog! Your Questions Answered!

1. Sorry about my cell phone going off in the middle. 
2. Tell me how dumb I am for looking for my phone when it goes off. I was recording the vlog on my phone. Oh my. 



Don't forget to leave your questions below! 


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

SO Frustrated with the Fitness Industry

I am so frustrated I could cry.

This country is facing a problem of epic proportions and the people that are supposed to be helping, are making things worse and it’s seriously pissing me off.

I watch a trainer at the gym every morning do everything except pay attention to his client. He talks to other people, works out himself, or is on his phone nearly every time I look over at him. This morning, the person he was training was doing a move with dumbbells in her hand, and I literally couldn’t tell what exactly she was supposed to be doing. Maybe a bicep curl, maybe a shoulder press, I still don’t know and he just stood there and did nothing. This person is overweight, and at the gym at 6am consistently, and her trainer doesn’t care enough to correct her form. SERIOUSLY!? Do you know what is going to happen after a few months of this? She isn’t going to see results, and she will give up.

Then yesterday a friend was talking about a nutrition plan her trainer sent her. Out of curiosity, I asked her to send it to me and all I could do was laugh. He has her eating 1200 calories a day. 1200! Breakfast is toast and orange juice, and 2 of her other 5 meals are store bought bars. Of course, he has her working out on top of this so basically her body is running on empty, 24/7. So, what happens when she plateaus? Eat less? More cardio? What happens when her metabolism is so shot from this extremely low calorie diet that her body stores everything she eats? She too, will give up.



WHAT IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE!? Clients are paying money and putting trust in people that are truly only making things worse. It angers me so much to see those willing to make a change   be put on a plan that is designed to make them fail.

I of course told my friend that the plan was outrageous, and I know that's one person, but I know there are so, so many others being fed this ridiculous information.

I want to fix this so badly. I couldn’t sleep last night thinking about what I could do to make this better. I don’t have the answer, yet. But my brain is far from being done thinking about it.

End rant.

Monday, January 21, 2013

McMuffins for Breakfast...Clean of Course!

Yesterday was another Sunday chock full of clean eats! I think I have mentioned them once or twice before, but Food For Life brown rice English Muffins are the sh*t. They taste awesome with coconut oil and cinnamon, but they are also perfect to make "McMuffins". This is one of B's very favorite breakfasts because of course he feels like he is eating something that's not good for him, but in reality they're not bad at all! I just cook a couple eggs over medium, a couple slices of Applegate (no nitrate) turkey bacon, and a couple slices of cheese (or almond cheese for me). If you're ever having that McDonalds craving give this a shot! 


After breakfast we did a whole lot of nothing until I decided it was time to get cookin'. Food prep this week wasn't much, but I did Zucchini bread and substituted 1/2 cup of the oat flour for 2 scoops of protein powder. I had 2 slices this morning before the gym with some greek yogurt on top. 


It was perfect. 


I also did a batch of brown rice made with 1/2 water and 1/2 low sodium chicken broth. And lastly, a big turkey/veggie/egg white mixture to have for lunches throughout the week. 


I picked up some fettucine style brown rice noodles when I bought the elbow ones for the chicken noodle soup, so I decided to throw together a little pasta dish yesterday afternoon. I just used Monte Bene pasta sauce and added some turkey and a few extra Italian spices. I ate mine with lots of broccoli and cauliflower. Yum!

Thank you so much for all the vlog questions! I'll get to those this week!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Clean Eating Crock Pot Chicken Noodle

It isn't very often B asks for a specific dinner, unless he wants me to create mac n cheese that tastes like Kraft, or ice cream. Both realistic of course. But, since it's been so cold here in AZ (Yes, COLD! You can't tell me 28 degrees is not cold!) he's been on a soup thing. He bought canned soup over the weekend (yuck) and asked me on Monday if I had a chicken noodle recipe. I didn't, but I couldn't bare to see him eat more junk soup so I came up with this! It really hit the spot-- especially after I added hot sauce to mine! 


Ingredients
 Boneless chicken breasts
3 cups low sodium, organic chicken broth
1 package brown rice noodles
1/2 a low sodium bullion cube 
3 cups water
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 bag baby carrots, chopped in half
1 small onion, chopped
1T garlic powder
1T onion powder
1 T dill
1T rosemary

These are the noodles I bought...



Any brand is fine, just make sure these are the only ingredients! 

Directions
1. Place all ingredients except noodles in crock pot. Chicken breasts should be whole. 
2. Cook on high for 7 hours. 
3. About 20 minutes before serving, boil water for the noodles. 
4. Take chicken breasts out of crock pot and cut-- it's a little hard because it tends to shred, but just try ;)
5. When noodles are soft, add to crock pot along with chopped chicken. Mix well and serve! 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

A Green What I Ate Wednesday

So last weeks What I Ate Wednesday I totally failed and getting my veggies in, so I made that I priority for this week. It was so cool looking at my pics from the day and seeing all the green! 

Surprised? Me either. 2 1/2 Apple Cinnamon Protein Muffins before our heavy back day. I'm not getting tired of these yet, but I think I may try out zucchini bread next week- it sounds awesome right now! 


PWO big green protein shake! Protein powder, oats, almond milk, spinach, Truvia, and Cinnamon.



Oats, almond milk, cottage cheese, and blueberries for snack. Don't forget the cinnamon and sprinkle of protein powder! 


Lunch was an extra large turkey muffin with sweet potato fries and green beans. I'm really not a huge fan of green beans. But I ate them. 


My afternoon snack was super random- 4 hard boiled egg whites, carrots, a small salad and some slivered almonds. Weird.


I had a steak craving on the way home from work, so I stopped and picked up a couple to throw on the grill. I also sauteed spinach, mushrooms and onions, and stole 2 green beans off B's plate. You know, because I don't like them very much.... 


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

My Favorite Arm Workout Yet!

For some reason it's always been a challenge for me to make my biceps sore. I walk out of the gym feeling like my arms are going to pop, and then wake up with super sore triceps, but my biceps are fine. NOT ANYMORE! I've done this workout 3 times now, and it freakin' kills me each time.All I have to say is good luck! :)

Skull Crushers- 3 sets of 10; I use 50lbs with a spot

Lying Triceps Press

Single arm tricep kickbacks- 3 sets of 10; I use 10lbs

Standing Bent-Over One-Arm Dumbbell Triceps Extension

Cable pushdown super set with dips- 3 sets of 10. I did 30lbs for my cable push downs.

Triceps Pushdown
Dips - Triceps Version

This is where things get interesting. Bryan likes to call this the "devils chair" haha because it's really stinkin' hard.

3 sets of 8 alternating bicep curls on incline bench. With each set, drop your weight 2 times. So, I start with 15lbs, do that 8 times then grab the 10lbs do that 8 times, then grab 5 lbs, and do that 8 times. My biceps hurt just typing this.

Incline Dumbbell Curl

Reverse curls- 3 sets of 10; I used the 20lb bar.

Reverse Barbell Curl

Cable rope hammer curls- 3 sets of 8; I did 30lbs

Cable Hammer Curls - Rope Attachment

PS- I'm watching The Biggest Loser right now, and as much as I LOVE this show, it devastates me to see people so upset about losing 2lbs a week. 2 lbs is amazing and to feel bad about that is such a shame. Throw away the scales, they mean nothing!

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Weekend I Said YES to the Dress!

Wooohoooo! After just one day of shopping and 6 or 7 dresses, I found my dress! I had the best time ever with my friends and family and it will be a weekend I never ever forget. 


I was so lucky to have 2 of my bridesmaids in from out of town, and thanks to FaceTime, I got to have all the most important people there with me. 


Thank goodness my mom was there with me, because she was the one that suggested I try on a different type of dress than I had been trying on all day. I had overheard another lady talking about a dress that just happened to be the style my mom wanted me to try, so I decided to listen to my mom and just go for it. All day I had just been feeling eh about all the dresses-- they were beautiful and pretty much just what I had in mind, but nothing was blowing me away. Then I tried on THE dress and it is so true that you just know! It was one of the best feelings. 


After a super fun but tiring weekend, the last thing in the world I wanted to do last night was cook. I sat on the couch and tried to figure out how I was going to make the week work without doing any bulk cooking and realized, it just wasn't going to happen. Especially now that I'm on a lean out mission for mid March, I need to make sure I always have clean foods ready to go. 


So, I sucked it up and made carob chip banana muffins, apple cinnamon protein muffins, turkey muffins, and rosemary garlic sweet potato fries. This will take care of breakfast and lunch all week, which is a huge relief and I'm so glad it's done now! I'll pick back up tomorrow with the rest of the workouts I owe you! 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Lesson Learned and Leg Day!

I wanted to re-post the photo of my eats yesterday because I learned a biiiig lesson.

Photo: Super simple eats today. Cottage cheese and oats, turkey chili, and baked chicken with a spinach salad.

I mentioned that my meals 2-4 were super simple, but that's not the bad part. The bad part is that I did not eat enough carbs yesterday and my body totally freaked out. Before these meals I had 2 apple cinnamon protein muffins and my PWO shake with pumpkin and oats, but that with the oats in the picture just wasn't enough. By 2:30 I was STARVING for my 3pm meal, but then when I went to eat it, it just didn't sound good. All I wanted was peanut butter M&M's! I very, very rarely have cravings for bad foods so it was so weird to feel that way. I had planned on making stir fry for dinner and that just sounded blah too. I ended up having egg whites and a almond meal pancake which luckily hit the spot, but moral of the story is eat your carbs! Your body will crave them if you don't, and your body doesn't know the difference between brown rice or white pasta, so 9 times out of 10 it will crave the bad stuff!

Moving on to leg day.

It’s so funny to think I used to absolutely despise leg day. I would read about other people loving their leg days and want to puke because I just hated it so much. Now, believe it or not, they’re on of my favorite days! I have noticed a pretty big difference in my legs lately, and I really hope that while I’m leaning out some of my leg muscle will really pop! One day, I might even have a little quad separation ;)
Wide squats- 3 sets of 10-12; I started at 95lbs, and ended at 125lbs.

Barbell Full Squat

One legged leg press- 3 sets of 10; I did 50lbs (I think)

Leg Press

Leg extensions- 3 sets of 10, last set drop set to failure; I did 70lbs, dropped to 40, 30, and 20. And then almost cried.



Seated Leg Curl- 3 sets of 10; I did 50lbs- I prefer the lying leg curl over the seated, but I tweaked my knee snowboarding and it’s still sore, so the lying machine hurt L

Seated Leg Curl

Glute kickback machine- 3 sets of 10 last set drop set- I did 75lbs and dropped to 40 for the drop set.

Glute Kickback

Make sure you stretch, especially after leg day!

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