Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Tips on Enjoying Thanksgiving without Ruining your Diet

Are you someone that's freaking out about Thanksgiving tomorrow? Let's do a quick run down and hopefully calm those turkey day fears. 

First, I won't even pretend like I've ever cooked a Thanksgiving meal because I definitely haven't, but I did find some bloggers much more  versed in healthy turkey dinners. 

Here blogger Vared literally did everything except cook the meal for you. There is a menu, grocery list, and even suggestions on when and what order to cook things.


You can never go wrong with recipes from The Gracious Pantry, here is her Clean Eating Thanksgiving Dinner. 

And if you're just in charge of a side like me, I would check out these Baked Asparagus Fries, Honey Glazed Baby Carrots, Parmesan Garlic Roasted Mushrooms, and this Apple Cranberry Walnut Salad.  



Now that you have your recipes, how do you prevent derailing all your hard earned progress? First and foremost, Thanksgiving should be ONE meal. If you're eating at an odd hour (like I know we typically do) then make sure you plan ahead. If you're eating at 2pm then it's likely you'll be hungry again by 6 or 7-- so throw a protein bar or a piece of fruit and a protein shake in your bag. This will prevent you from going back for Thanksgiving dinner, round 2. Second, learn how to create your plate: Protein first, then salad and veggies and with the small area left on your plate you can take a few bites of the 'bad stuff' aka mashed potatoes, stuffing, biscuits etc. This allows you to eat a little of everything while still being mindful. When it comes time for pie, choose your favorite and have a small slice- or even just a bite. If you're still too full, skip it!  Next, do your best to get a workout in Thursday morning- most gyms have holiday hours so get in and get a good sweat, I know I'll be doing legs tomorrow! Lastly, leave the leftovers. Unless you're just taking home some plain turkey, there's no need to continue eating calorie laden food. Like I said above, Thanksgiving should be ONE meal, and if it is you'll be just fine! 

Happy Turkey Day! 

Monday, November 24, 2014

Shoulder and Tricep Workout + Winter Workout Plan

Happy Monday and happy 3 day work week! This week started a little different than most since we decided to get our heavy leg day in yesterday, so we took it a little easier this morning with a shoulder and tricep workout. I've been doing my best to hit both shoulders and legs twice a week lately since those are the muscle groups I'm really wanting to grow. I've noticed big changes in my shoulders and I'm excited to keep working them hard over the next few months. 

Speaking of the next few months, Bryan and I are possibly going to Playa del Carmen in mid-February which means we are likely going to have to 'diet' throughout the winter months which is not something we are accustomed to. Usually we use the winter months to eat more and lift heavy to try to gain as much muscle as possible, but I know we'll both want to look our best come February if we do end up going to paradise! So, if anyone wants to join me in keeping your diet in check, workouts intense, and getting cardio in 3-5 times a week, let me know! I'll definitely need some accountability partners especially when it comes to the cardio part, yuck!


Give this workout a try and don't forget to squeeze those triceps! 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Cold Weather Clean Eats

As I mentioned on Facebook yesterday, it's finally cold in AZ- and by cold I mean 72 is the high. While fighting the tail end of my cold and the cold mornings and nights, the only thing that sounded good for dinner was some homemade soup. So, I literally searched my blog for soup recipes and came across this one that I pretty much followed to a T, only thing that I did differently was add some whole wheat noodles this time. 


It was late when we finally sat down for dinner so this picture doesn't do it justice, but OH my goodness it was so darn good. I like adding a little cholula to mine for a little spice and it was just perfect. I'll definitely be making this many more times over the winter. 


I also wanted to share with you guys what I did with the other half of my cabbage (since the recipe only calls for 1/2). I honestly was inches away from throwing it in the garbage- terrible I know- but decided to keep it and figure out something to do with it. After poking around pinterest I saw lots of different grilled cabbage recipes so that's what I did, and it came out really tender and really took away that harsh cabbage taste. 


All I did was spray it with olive oil and sprinkled garlic salt and pepper on top then wrapped in foil and threw it on the grill on medium-high heat. I left it on for about 10 minutes and then flipped them over and did another 10 minutes. (For those of you dealing with actual cold weather, this can easily be done in the oven on 400 degrees.) We'll eat this with some marinated chicken and brown rice this week, along with our soup and turkey spaghetti sauce. Luckily, I'm back to normal workouts now that I'm feeling better so I will share tomorrows back workout with you guys once I come up with it! 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

12 Healthy Holiday Appetizer Ideas

This post is sponsored by foodie.com

The holidays are just about here and I know that honestly freaks a lot of people out, but it shouldn't! If you stick to your plan and get your workouts in, a festive Thanksgiving meal will not set you back. I do know however that oftentimes there are other gatherings and parties that happen around the holidays so it's not just one meal, and for those times it's important to have a healthy go-to. Check out these 12 recipes from Foodie.com for some healthy holiday appetizer ideas! 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Arm Workout + Friday Thoughts

Happy Friday!! Since my birthday is on Monday (yay!) I have a super fun weekend planned so I knew I needed to get my workout in this morning, even though sleeping in sounded so much better. While I was at the gym my Timehop popped up on my phone and one of the photos from this day last year was the one on the right (below). Even though I was working back today I couldn't help taking a photo to compare my progress over the last year. Although the lighting is different I am so excited to see my triceps making some great progress! This made me think of the past year and exactly what I've done to keep my progress up, and the biggest thing that comes to mind is I just kept going. Sure, changing up your workouts, periodizing, nutrition, etc. etc. etc. is all important, but really the most important thing you an do is JUST KEEP GOING. Have I been perfect over the past year? Heck no. Could my progress be much more if I wouldn't have taken days off, drank wine, eaten In-N-Out and been more diligent about supplementation, sure! But guess what, I'm happy with myself because regardless of set backs, I kept doing my best. I guess my message is you don't have to be perfect to see progress-- so in the words of Dory the fish, just keep swimming :) 


I'll leave you guys with an arm workout to try over the weekend! 


(I've been focusing on building triceps so I do those first, if you would rather focus on biceps, do those exercises first) 

Skull Crushers 4 x 10
V bar pushdowns 3 x 12 
Single arm reverse pushdowns 4 x 10 
Overhead rope tricep extension 3 x 10 super set dips to failure 
Machine preacher curls 4 x 10 
Alternating hammer curls 3 x 10 super set seated curls 3 x 10 
Overhead cable curls 3 x 12 
Rope hammer curls 3 x 10 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

High Rep Leg Day

As promised on Instagram, here's yesterdays leg workout! I try to alternate between super heavy leg days and lighter weight higher rep days to keep my muscles guessing and growing. This is obviously a high rep day so don't be surprised if you have to drop your weight pretty significantly. Also make sure you are focusing on squeezing during each exercise, don't just go through the motions. 


Give it a shot and let me know what you think! 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Meal Prep

I have some more food prep ideas for you! This week I wanted to keep things simple, mostly because I knew it was going to be a busy week and sometimes keeping it simple is the best way to stay on track. So, B and I decided it was going to be a "chicken and rice" kind of week but I did spice it up a little. I found this new spice packet (or maybe it isn't new but it's new to me) called Just Add Juice and basically they recommend a juice to add to the spices that come in the packet and you let it all marinate overnight and then grill. The one I tried (chicken pictured in the middle photo below) was garlic and herb marinated in 1/2 cup lemon juice. It's SO good. We bought a couple other flavors to try but I think this may be my new go-to seasoning. 


I also did taco meat and a green chili salsa chicken. For that I just used a can of green chills and a can of jalapenos in the crock pot. It's a nice change from regular salsa chicken and tastes really good on top of brown rice. I also cooked up some begins this week and much to my surprise we have almost eaten them all! Go us! Lastly I baked a bunch of red potatoes to switch up our breakfast a little. We were both getting burnt out on toast and egg whites so we are doing scrambles this week; potato, turkey sausage, spinach, and egg whites. Hope these blog posts are helpful for you guys! :)

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