Lose weight all day? Sure!

While I was recently browsing through my daily morning Yahoo articles, I came across one that instantly caught my eye. “How to lose weight all day long.” Uh, Hello! Of course I’m going to read that! I was expecting the same old “don’t do this, run a lot, don’t eat this” sort of thing, but I have to say I was more than pleasantly surprised. I read the article about a week ago and I have been following it’s guidelines along with my fellow blogger, Sandi’s tips and 100 workout. So far, only in a week I have lost 2 pounds and I feel so much better already! Amazing? I know. Who knew what a little bit of advice and self-discipline could do !  So let me share these awesome tips with you!

You should try as best you can to keep your body on the same schedule.  Within an hour of waking up and before you eat breakfast, squeeze in 20 minutes of cardio. If  you can do this outside, even better. Research has shown that early morning sunlight can help your body set itself on a healthier sleep and wake schedule.

Photo Courtesy motiveweight.tumblr.com/

Before and after every meal drink 8 ounces of water.  This will help you get filled up faster and help your metabolism speed up.  After your cardio, don’t keep your body’s “feed me” scream hanging on for too long.  Make sure you eat within an hour of waking up and after your cardio.  If you put off eating breakfast for too long, it will make you even more hungry as time ticks by.

Photo Courtesy motiveweight.tumblr.com

I was not a believer in this next one until I finally did it right.  Eat every 3-4 hours.  That hunger scream comes back once you really get into the swing of the cardio in the morning because your metabolism will be faster. Keep the hunger suppressed and have a snack every few hours. I have found that snacking on things with a texture to them psycologically is better to me. Things like carrots, celery and green peppers have been my snack of choice due to the “crunch factor”.

Photo Courtesy motiveweight.tumblr.com

Around 3:30 pm is the time where if you feel you need a boost, now is the time to drink your last cup of joe!Drinking coffee after 4:00 PM disturbs your sleep cycle and can keep you from falling asleep.

From 4:00PM -8:00 PM is the best time to do your strength training. This is because it’s when your body temperature is the highest, so you’re ready for your best performance in the gym yet!

Photo Courtesy Les Mills Body Pump

To make sure you don’t have those late night cravings, eat dinner somewhere between 5:00PM and 7:00PM.

It’s crucial for your body to stay on a regular sleep schedule. Of course, we have later nights than others, but you should try to limit the number of those nights.  Your body feels more refreshed and energized when it’s on a regular sleep schedule.  So around 10:00 each night, stop texting,  turn off Jersey Shore and go to sleep!

Stick to this plan, and I can guarantee you will see results!

Progress Report

Just a quick little check in! I’ve been on my “lifestyle change” diet for about a week now and have some positive results thus far. I’ve lost 7 pounds already! Now, before you get excited because of this miracle, it was that time of the month for me last week (sorry, TMI) so I’d guess that 2-3 of those pounds are legit.

Regardless, this is good news! Way to boost my ego to help me keep on trucking.

A reminder on what I’ve been doing:

-low carb (basically no processed carbs, sugar, flour-based products)
-no artificial ANYTHING
-only drinking water
-lots of fruits and veggies
-turkey and tuna for a big portion of my animal based protein
-no soy!

I’ve been doing the 100 workout basically everyday with different forms of cardio thrown in.

Give it a whirl! It’s definitely worth the effort.

Free Pilates!

Pilates is a great workout!  It’s great for toning, strengthening, and lengthening your muscles and body.  But no matter where you live, the classes are very expensive!  Privates can be $90.00+ a session where memberships for group floor classes are around $200.00 a month.

Fortunately for all of the broke gals and boys out there, I have discovered Blogilates.  One-woman show Cassey Ho runs this great blog as well as YouTube Channel showcasing her tutorials and at-home use videos.  She is knowledgeable, bubbly, and really gets you sweating.

I have done two sessions so far and both were great!  They are free, accessible, and actually give you a great workout!  I highly recommend checking her out and giving them a try :)

First is Summer Slim-down.  It is a two part workout; definitely do both back to back for the desired result! I found this to be very core/back/arm intensive.

Second is New Body Makeover.  This one was ridiculous (In a good way, Cassey!).  It works out your arms, legs, and abs.  For days after, I especially felt it in my inner thighs; it was super leg intensive which is what I am always looking for!

She has a wide array of videos on her YouTube Channel and website.  I’m excited to have found her and will be following her for quite a long time!

Blueprint Cleanse on the Cheap!

Juicing diets and cleanses are really on the incline lately…you know what?  So are yuppies and hipsters….connection between the two?  Nah.  There are articlesstudies, and slim down plans galore explaining this trendster fad.

Many of you have heard of the Blueprint Cleanse where you can have a juice cleanse delivered to your door.  You have options for choosing what kind of “plan” you want to go on.  Basically ranging from beginner, intermediate, to amazingly pompous advanced plans.  They are fresh, tasty, and do make you feel better; especially if you choose a 3-5 day plan.  The major set back of course is price.  One day is $60.00!  If you do a 3-day cleanse (which is recommended for the minimum), you are already spending $180.00 + shipping.  WTF, right?

How about a $17.87 cleanse?  Lucky for me, my roommate just bought a juicer!  We went out to our local grocery and bought the following:

  • 1 pineapple
  • 3 pears
  • 4 apples
  • 3 oranges
  • 1 bag of spinach
  • 1 bunch of celery
  • 2 cucumbers
  • 1 yam
  • a chunk of ginger
I actually only ended up using 2/3’s of those purchases, so call it a $12.00 project!
We are obviously leaning more towards a tasty juice rather than a serious cleansing tonic.  You can do whatever combination you would like.  I recommend putting some apples in if you are going all green (kale, spinach, broccoli, etc) to add a touch of sweet.  Either way, it is fun to do and tasty to drink!
We got the fruit ready according to the juicers instructions.  For some reason you need to peal cucumbers but not zucchini; peal oranges but can toss a lemon in whole; remove mango skin but can throw bunch of grapes (stem and all) straight into the chute!   Point being, read your machine’s instructions; they might surprise you and save you a lot of grief.  We skinned & chopped up the pineapple, skinned the cuke, peeled the oranges, chopped the pears, apples, and yams (with skin).

We were ready to go!

Carefully and slowly juice the ingredients in small batches.  We usually have some large glasses nearby to pour the juice out in these small amounts.

Warning!  The mess is pretty bad.  Seriously bad.

Voila! JUICE!  It’s clearly cheaper than the BPC but to my suprise, is also a cheaper option than a 12 oz $4.50 Odwalla or Naked Juice any day!

Of course, to even begin to rival the BPC, you would need to dedicate yourself to some sort of a plan.  You can’t just drink juice one night and think you are going to wake up 7 pounds thinner…that would be amazing though.  Read up on juice cleanses, fasts, and of course ALWAYS speak with your doctor before starting any diet :)

Healthy, Cheap and Quick Dinner!

It seems like there is a new “magic diet” every 5 minutes. A majority of these diets require you to cook elaborate meals with ingredients that are nearly impossible to pronounce or find.   Yes, I have succombed to some and tried them.  Did they work? Momentarily maybe. Did 95% of them include food that had taste and was delicious? Eh, no. Not to mention, they take more time than most would like. I’ve done my fair share of research on trying to find healthy,easy and of course budget friendly recipes all while including some deliciousness in my meals. Working a 9-5 job and trying to find energy to cook dinner afterwards seems nearly impossible on some days. That’s when things like ramen noodles and salads come into play. But let’s face it, I’m not in college anymore and I can’t live off of ramen.

I came across a great recipe for pesto chicken which checked off all the boxes I wanted: Healthy, easy and cheap! Score! You can pair this recipe with just about anything.  I decided to match it with some mushrooms,zucchini and asparagus. Here’s how you do it:

You will need:

Prep time : 5 minutes

Cook time: 30-35 minutes

  • Thawed boneless,skinless chicken breasts (about 4 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup Pesto
  • Mushrooms (whole or sliced)
  • 1 Zucchini
  • Bundle of asparagus
  • Smart Balance Butter
  • Salt
  • Pepper

    Ingredients

First, place the chicken breasts into a bowl and toss with pesto until all chicken breasts are completely covered.  Let the chicken marinate in pesto for about 5-10 minutes (I poke holes in the chicken with a fork so it absorbs the pesto for a better taste).  While the chicken is marinating, pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F.

Next, place the chicken into a baking dish and put into oven for 25-30 minutes. At about 15 minutes,  start the vegetables.  Slice the zucchini however desired.  If you are using whole mushrooms, slice the mushrooms as well.  Cut off the bottom half of the asparagus.  Place  the zucchini and mushrooms into the same pan with a tsp of your smart balance butter. Turn pan on medium heat.  Place the asparagus into a separate pan on medium heat with tsp of smart balance butter.

Salt and pepper to taste for both the zucchini and mushrooms as well as the asparagus.  However, we are keeping this healthy, so make sure you don’t put too much salt in! I usually do just a pinch in each.  Cook the vegetables for about 15 minutes or under desired tenderness.

At 30 minutes, check on the chicken.  I usually cut a piece to make sure it is fully cooked.  Once the chicken is fully cooked, all that’s left to do is serve it and enjoy!

This recipe is delicious and I quote my boyfriend “one of my new favorites!” You can dress it up a little bit if you’d like and add tomatoes or cheese.  This is also paired well with pasta.