If You Fail to Plan, You Plan To Fail

If you’re starting out this year with a resolution to focus on a healthier you, my best tip is to set yourself up for success. Day in and day out we have our responsibilities like work and family but we forget that YOU are a priority too.  It takes effort to create the time to work out and eat healthy so here are some suggestions to keep you focused on your resolution…

Meal Prep

Preparing your meals in advance has its advantages.  Not only are you saving time during the busy week days, you are also setting yourself up to make healthier choices.  I have made the mistake of not eating several times a day.  My blood sugar drops and my brain immediately starts to think of sugary foods I need RIGHT NOW!  Fast food is the easiest go-to meal for the fix but it won’t sustain you until your next meal, your blood sugar will spike, not to mention it’s really bad for you.  If you have meals prepped to go in the morning to take to work then you don’t need fast food to hold you over.

Sundays is my meal prep day.  It’s a day to relax and stay at home which allows the opportunity to get all the ingredients you need, cook them, and portion everything out for the week.  You can find meal prep ideas on Pinterest and one site I like for healthy recipes is www.skinnytaste.com meal prep

Simply make your proteins (chicken, fish, turkey, etc) in big amounts as well as veggies and snacks.  Once they are all made, just portion them out in your favorite containers so you can grab and go in the morning.  I have also read about snack drawers for your fridge for you to grab pre-portioned veggies, humus and nuts.

What you’d find me cooking on a Sunday:  several chicken breasts, roasted veggies and sweet potatoes.  You can also cut up raw veggies for the week to prep salads as you go.

Fitness

At work you have a calendar of meetings, conference calls and tasks so why not schedule your workouts?  This will help you plan out your week, fit the workouts in when you can and serve as a reminder to take care of YOU!  Here is a schedule I put together for a friend…

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In real life, things come up and you can’t make a workout.  Don’t stress yourself out but find something you can do at home!  A lot of people do the P90X or T25 at home so carve out the time and make it work for you!

Goals

Goals are probably the most important piece of the whole plan.  By setting goals for yourself you have something to work towards.  Here are a few goal suggestions:

  • Workout a minimum of 3 days a week for 45-60 minutes
  • Prepare meals in advance and only eat out once a week as a cheat meal
  • Run a mile or 5K without stopping
  • Accomplish 20 pushups, 50 sit ups, etc

goals

By setting smaller goals for yourself that are attainable you will feel the accomplishment.  When I set weight goals for myself it’s self sabotage.  That doesn’t work for me but it may work for someone else so figure out what works for you.

Everything mentioned above is about trial and error.  It works for me to meal prep on Sundays but it may work better for you on Saturdays.  Find a workout you like otherwise you won’t do it.  Set goals that work for you and your schedule but challenge yourself!

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Obesity: A Vicious Cycle

obesity

Today I came across this article (http://shine.yahoo.com/at-home/live-off-dollar-store-week-50-budget-184100222.html) teaching us how to stretch the dollar when it comes to food.   Yes, going to the grocery store is expensive and looking for sales and using coupons is a great idea.  But, did you notice that the menu in the article is all boxed or canned items?  Not one of these items is natural or chemical free.

The FLOTUS is an advocate for exercise and healthy eating.  She goes around promoting to “Let’s Move” (http://www.letsmove.gov/) and she  grows (probably a landscaper) a sweet little garden on The White House grounds.  But what do people in the real world do to eat healthy in a sh*tty economy?

It seems to me that obesity (and other life threatening diseases) is an endless cycle created by big corporations that produce processed foods at a cheap price.  If we don’t have the funds to eat healthy we are forced to buy unhealthy food.  If we continue to consume unhealthy food we are more likely to develop a myriad of life threatening diseases and the insurance companies get richer.

I am not one to discuss government but I find this very sick and twisted.  What are your thoughts?

Commitment

Commitment

Yesterday at the end of my Zone 360 class I was approached by one of my coaches to talk about my progress and see if I needed any help.  I’m still down only 10 pounds and should be more around 16 after 2 months.  I said that I’ve had recent food temptations with family dinners and parties and did cheat more than I should and I also admitted that I should be taking more classes.

My coach suggested that I take some time to think about it and decide if I’m really committed or not.

After thinking about it I was really upset to where I wanted to cry.  I had just completed a class that was really tough but got through it, I have changed many things in my diet and I’ve come so far from where I was.  How could I possibly do even more than I already am?

Then I got angry.

How can anyone put a pound on how much I should be at?  This has been a big life change for me and I’m not doing enough?  I’ve struggled so much with pain, planning and monitoring my food, and getting myself to the gym.  I’ve had 34 years of bad habits and you expect me be perfect?

At that point I came to my senses and realized that I’m not doing this for anyone but me.  If I am dedicated to getting healthy through fitness and diet then I need to re-commit myself to what I wanted when this began.

“Commit: to pledge (oneself) to a position on an issue or question;express (one’s intention, feeling, etc.)”  It’s time for me to fully commit myself to reach my goals and I hope you’re all still with me…

So here is my plan to hold myself accountable:

Week 8

Total weight loss: 10 lbs

# of days to commit to working out: 4

Incorporating more fruits and veggies into my diet.  Eating less carbohydrates and more proteins.

 

Here we go….

 

Food On The Go

Healthy Fast Food

When I started going through this new regiment of working out and changing my eating habits I was gung ho about following the diet that I was given.  One thing I found was the amount of time it takes to prepare.  I go to two different stores for food to save money and then bring it home to cook for a few hours over the weekend so I can grab and go during the week.

I have to admit I have become lazy especially in the mornings.  Typically I will switch up my days of a cooked breakfast (eggs, turkey sausage, toast) with cereal.  More recently I don’t do either and just grab a banana and a Nature Valley Protein bar that I keep on hand as snacks.

I’ve noticed that more and more fast food places are offering healthy options which is great for me because I can still have a hot breakfast without falling off the wagon.

Wawa – They are now offering a Sizzli which is a ham, egg white, cheese and multi-grain English muffin at 240 calories.  Not too shabby!  Stay away from the 2 for $3 offer though because you only need one!  Wawa’s salads are also really good but stay away from the soft pretzels.  They are my weakness!

McDonald’s – Who would have thought that McDonald’s would offer something relatively healthy in this generation?  I grew up going to McDonald’s on the Belmar boardwalk and in fact had my 5th birthday there with a Grimmace birthday cake.  Who doesn’t love their amazing fries?  And the sauce on their Big Mac – wow!  But now that I’m an adult, smart choices are a must.  McDonald’s offers an under 400 calorie menu but be careful not to mix it with fries because it will set you over!  I’ve heard they are offering egg white McMuffins but they aren’t available around me yet.

Burger King – Who doesn’t love the golden crown at Burger King?  When I was a kid my dad would take me here all the time.  I remember he would always get the Whopper and I’d get a BK kids meal with a new toy and a crown!  Burger King is updating their menu by offering a veggie burger that is 410 calories.

Wendy’s – Wendy’s seems to be behind the ball here with healthier options and they don’t highlight their lower calorie options which they should!  I did find some options below 550 calories such as salads, chili and a baked potato.

Most importantly I DO NOT suggest eating at these places everyday.  These items are still high in sodium and sugars. If you are just too busy to make a warm meal atleast you know there are options out there without losing control of your goal.

Happy eating!

Food: Take 3

What do I think about every day?  Food!  I’m sure most people do especially if they are trying to make better changes for themselves.

I try to make it easier on myself to prepare everything in advance that way I don’t make bad choices but also not having to cook after the gym.  On the weekends I’ll hit up my local farm market for produce and then Walmart to get the staples like turkey meat, chicken, eggs, egg whites, quinoa, tomato sauce or whatever ingredients I need for the new recipes I’m trying. On Sundays I’ll prepare all my meals at once to get it all done for the week.

This weekend I found SkinnyTaste.com  and scoured the site for recipes to fit my diet.  There are so many recipes to choose from depending on your diet, the meal type, occasion and beverages!  I also found them on Pinterest because I like to eat with my eyes (not literally of course!)

Last night I made the Spinach Lasagna Rolls Ups which are super easy to make!

Spinach Lasagna Rolls Ups

I also made the Turkey Meatballs and spaghetti squash for a nice dinner during the week.  The turkey meatballs were pretty easy as well.  Just had to mix all the ingredients, then browned them in a saute pan with olive oil and transferred to the crock pot with the sauce and sit on low for about 3.5 hours.

While my meatballs were cooking up I also cooked a few sweet potatoes by poking them with a fork, rolling them up in foil and putting them in a 400 degree oven for 1.5 hours.  They will actually caramelize inside to have a sweeter taste!

I AM A Rockstar

strength

Today was Week 4 Day 1 and I can’t believe I got through it all.  I completed 2 rounds of about 7 stations varying in pushing the sled then 5 burpees, squats with bicep curls, skaters on the TRX, slamming the medicine ball, rowing, pushups on the bosu, and another medicine ball workout.

Then we got into teams of 2 and had to do 20 sit ups while our teammate holds our feet down and we touch their shoulders.  Then my teammate, Jackie, had to run 20 meters with a medicine ball above her head and we switched for 5 rounds.  It was hard as hell but we completed it…2nd to last but dammit we did it!

At the end of class my coach, Melissa, gave me a t-shirt because I was near completion of a month being there.  I was pretty shocked and proud at the same time.  One of my classmaters who I haven’t met yet asked if I was the girl with the blog.  Wow!!  That means so much to me!

I need to give a HUGE shout out to my friend Stacey for getting me into the gym and my awesome coaches Melissa and Eddie at Ultimate Fit Zone.  They push me every time and cheer me on to do better.  Special mention to Nikki who is a big inspiration as well as my classmates who cheer me on!

Thanks for all my friends and family that read my blog and encourage me as well.  Thanks to Chelsea M. for reminding me that I AM a rockstar!

I Had A Bad Day Again

Dr. Seuss

So my sickness turned into a 24+ stomach bug which put me behind in classes this week.  I missed my first class tonight but it’s an opportunity to rest up and go at it again even stronger.

The one thing that has gotten me through my bad days is talking about it.  I talk to my friends who are always reminding me that I’m doing great and encouraging me to keep going.  The text messages and Facebook messages are more appreciated than you may know.

As I was thinking about today’s update and old song came to mind which inspired the title: 

Thanks for continuing to encourage me and others….You are a part of this as much as I am.