Monday, December 29, 2008

Fabulous Food Find

You know that I get excited about finding new awesome products, and here is yet another. I was at the store looking for the best whole wheat tortilla and I found these, La Tortilla, Brand tortillas that I have never seen before. I looked at the nutrition facts and seriously couldn't believe what I was reading. Here are the stats: for one tortilla 80 calories, 3 grams of fat, 12 grams of fiber...yeah WOW, i know...and 8 grams of protein. Can you believe that? I just had one for dinner and it was really good. Try it. You won't be sorry.
**I bought these at Albertson's, so i'm not sure where they are available. BUT you can go on the STORE LOCATOR and type in what product you are looking for and your zip code and it will list the nearest stores that have them. Nice work La Tortilla.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Should auld aquantaince be forgot....

With the Christmas tree coming down and three days left until the New Year it's time to put such phrases as, "Next Year I'll be better at..." or "I'll start working on that once the holidays are over..." into action. I've all thought about them; New Years Resolution. I think it's a safe bet to say that there is a heath related resolution or two on everyone's list. I think its also safe to say that a lot of the time these are the ones that are quickest to fail...Go to the gym everyday, lose 30 lbs, start an exercise program, stop eating junk, etc. There are endless ways we want to improve ourselves, and big plans that many of us have to "be better next year." Well....make this year the year that it actually happens. Don't just think about it. PUT IT INTO ACTION! You can do it. You really can. Here are a few tips to help you on your way...
-Write it down. A goal that is floating around in your mind is going to quickly be forgotten. Write it down. Commit to it. Sign it.
-Put it somewhere you can see it. Make yourself a sticky-note reminder and put it on your fridge, your mirror, your nightstand; wherever you'll see it and remember it.
-make it feasible. Don't try to make it to the gym every day if your schedule only allows three times a week. Your destining yourself to fail. Evaluate what you really can do, and start small.
-Baby steps. Don't try to eat perfectly, workout three times a day, start yoga, begin a weight lifting program, cut out junk food, all at once. There may be a few of you out there who can keep all those commitments, but chances are one at a time you'll fail at one or two causing you to give up entirely. Pick one thing, focus on it, accomplish it. Pick something else, focus on it, accomplish it. You get the pattern. Lots of baby steps can get you a long way.
-If at first you don't succeed...(you know the rest.) Chances are you'll slip up every now and again. You'll miss a day at the gym, you'll eat that bag of candy, you'll sleep through a morning run. BUT success doesn't come from perfection. More often than not success comes from a series of failings and the willingness to keep on trying. So...KEEP ON TRYING. After all, you really CAN do it.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!!

Have a Happy Healthy Holidays!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Exercise of the Week: Plank with Tricep Kickbacks.

This weeks exercise comes with a disclaimer. A reminder, if you will, about why I do things the way I do. :)

Ever since I injured my lower back a few years ago, I've been really involving core training into my workouts. After trying to ignore the injury for a few months I decided it wasn't going to go away, and if I wanted to continue working out pain free I needed to get rid of it. I tried everything, Dr.'s, chiropractors, massages, and nothing seemed to help me. I decided to take matters into my own hands. (Not something I recommend in most injury situations, but I was at the end of my rope.) I began to study more about the body's core, and core training. I implemented core exercises more and more into my routines and surprisingly the pain started to subside. In some amazing way, strengthening my core muscles diminished the pain in my lower back, and it hasn't returned since. I now do core training as a part of all of my clients workouts, and two that have previously experienced severe back pain have had the same great results as I have. I can't promise this to be the case with everyone, but it is most definitely worth a shot! So...having that said. I like to take a lot of my exercises and add something to them, so they use your core; testing your balance, working your abs, making you concentrate on which muscles you're using. It can only benefit you. I promise!

Grab one dumbbell; I would say a 8-10 pounder. Get down on the ground in plank position with your arms fully extended. Grab the weight in one hand bring that elbow back, balancing all your weight on the opposing hand. Do regular triceps kickbacks with the arm holding the weight. Aim to do 12 to 15. Repeat on the other side.
*Things to think about
-aim to keep your hips down in line with your body
-avoid opening your hip that on the side you're working to your arm. You'll feel it more in your abs if your hips are turned down, abs fully engaged.
-think about that triceps muscle as your are squeezing that arm all the way back straight.
-if you aren't feeling it in the back of your arm try holding at the full extension for a second or two and then release slowly

Good luck!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Here it Goes!!

Ok, so. I talk a lot about goal setting and having things to work towards. I also talk a lot about following a program, something you can stick to. Well...if you're looking for a great opportunity to take my advice here it goes. April 18th...around 18 weeks away. What does this significant day mark? Well the Salt Lake City Marathon/Half Marathon of course. I have done the half marathon the past two years in a row, and I'm popping for the full size this year. I HIGHLY reccomend the Salt Lake City half marathon for those of you who aren't ready for the full, and who are looking for a way to challenge themselves. Here is a few things I must tell you...

1) You CAN do it. I know, you hate running, you don't have the time, blah blah blah blah blah...i've heard it ALL I promise. Suck it up and try. You'll be surprised at what you can do.
2) 99.9% of running is mental. Ok maybe not that much but a huge part of it is. Really. The hardest part is getting yourself started, you'd be surprised at what you can do if you really push yourself. I have proof of this. Just ask BENITA, NICHOLE, ELAINE...among many others! (back me up here guys!)
3) You will feel amazing. Yes, it will be difficult. Yep some of the days you'll probably be asking yourself, "Why am I doing this again?" But I can promise you, you'll feel SO great once you cross that finish line. You'll feel accomplished, empowered, able...and a little bit tired ;)
4) I really like the training program's on Hal Higdon's website.
5) The Salt Lake Marathon and Half Marathon is a great one to start with if you're a beginner. The course is great, the whole program is setup really well, and it's close to home. You get a cool shirt and medal too...yep i know, i'm talking you right into this!
6) Training starts this week/next. If you have questions about the programs, shoes, routes, music, injuries, food, etc etc etc PLEASE ask. You can leave a comment or email me directly @

It is SUCH an awesome experience. Set a goal for yourself. Try something new! Who's with me!?!?!?

Biggest Loser Finale!!

Yeah for Michelle! So I absolutely LOVE The Biggest Loser, and I was really excited about the outcome of the show. All of the contestants looked SO great. The winner was Michelle, dropping a total of 110 lbs, with an ending weight of 132 lbs. WOW! SO great. I love this show because they work SO hard. They change their lifestyles which ends up changing their lives. I think that is something we can all take away from this.One of my favorite quotes is simple, but profound. "Nothing changes if nothing changes." If you expect to see a difference in the way you look and feel you have to be willing to make changes!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Exercise of the Week: Time Saver Workout

The Situation: You get to the gym with limited time. You'd like to do some cardio as well as get some weight lifting in, but it's got to be quick. Here is a quick workout that will benefit you, burn some calories, and will be well worth your time.

The Regimen
First: Hit the weights

Your weight routine should look something like this. (Don't worry I'll explain myself.)

1 set of 12-15 Squats with Shoulder press.
1 set of 15 pushups
1 minute in plank position
(repeat this 3 times)

Next: Get in your cardio
(you can choose whichever machine you like. I'd suggest the treadmill or stairs if possible)

2 min warm up

3 min intensive high - we're talking really push yourself, sprint, go uphill, increase resistance, do whatever it is you need to do to get that heart rate pumping!
1 min breather - take the intensity down, catch that breath.
(repeat this without the warm up to fill the amount of time you have remaining)

end with a 2 min cool down

The explanation: As you've heard me say time and time again. I LOVE squats. Why do I love them so much? Because they are effective. They work every muscle in your lower body. When you do the squat with a shoulder press you are working your shoulders and some of the muscles in your biceps and upper back as well, making this exercise a definite multitasker! Make sure you keep your feet shoulder width apart, avoid letting your knees go over your toes, and sit low! Try and get those thighs in line with the ground. Make your weight heavy enough to really work you! Remember, you're trying to get your bang for your buck here. When doing your pushups, push yourself! Try to start doing some on your toes and then go to your knees once they get to hard. With your plank push yourself there as well. if a regular plank is too easy for you add some weight to your back or lift one foot up in the air. With these three exercises you're working every muscle in your body!
With your cardio this interval program will have you burning maximum calories in your short time frame. Really try and push yourself during your up intervals, and then scale it back and catch your breath for a minute. Weather you are able to do these intervals for 10 mins or 40 you should feel the workout!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Crock Pot Corn Chowder

With winter CLEARLY on it's way I tend to crave warm foods. Soups, in particular. At this point in the holiday season there is always so much going on it seems like cooking is almost too much! The answer...the crock pot of course. I found this recipe on, and I haven't had time to try it, but I think it looks so delicious and SO easy! I plan on making it this week. With maybe a side of homemade whole wheat bread or cornbread? yum! Oh..and you can't beat those nutrition facts!


1 lb frozen whole kernel corn
1 large onion, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
1 tbsp butter or margarine
1 ½ cups potatoes, diced
1 cup water
2 tsp chicken bouillon granules
½ tsp dried thyme
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
½ tsp dried dill
6 tbsp flour
3 cups fat free milk
Combine all ingredients except flour and milk in a 3 ½ or 4 quart slow cooker. Cook on low 8-9 hours, or until potatoes are tender.In a separate bowl, mix flour and milk until smooth. Stir slowly into corn chowder until thickened. Makes 7 servings - each serving contains: 180 calories, 2.5 grams fat, 3 grams fiber. 3 WW points

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Project Domestication Guest Post

My darling friend Becky is the author of Project Domestication. It's a fantastic blog devoted to her quest for discovering and perfecting all things domestic. From cooking, to shopping, to'll love it I promise!

She asked me to give a Holiday Gift Guide for the health nut...or even the aspiring health nut. Check it out my guest post for some great gift ideas for your loved ones, or even for yourself!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Exercise of the Week: Single Leg Squats

I love my squats, and so in turn I pretty much love any variation of the squat as well. Single leg squats are great, and you'll feel them even if you don't hold any sort of weight which means they are a great one to do at home if needed. Stand on one leg, and get your balance, tightening those abs. Keeping that knee in the same place sit your hips back into a squat. Your goal is to have this look like a regular squat, just on one leg. Try not to allow those knees to shift forward. You'll feel them more in your glutes if your hips are back. Try to go down as low as you can, keeping that balance and straighten back up. Keep that foot up the whole time. Do 12-15 reps on each leg. Happy squatting!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Megan's Workout Jams

I've told you before how much I love my music while I'm working out. It can be the only thing that keeps me going on those hard days!! Here is my current workout playlist.

Just Dance ft. Colby Odonis - Lady Gaga
Great DJ - The Ting Tings
Closer - Ne-Yo
Live Your Life - T.I.
Gives You Hell - All American Rejects
About a Girl - The Academy Is
Womanizer - Britney Spears
In the Ayer ft. Will.I.Am - Flo-Rida
Kelsey - Metro Station
Send Me an Angel - Real Life *who doesn't love sweatin' to some good 80's music??
Cookie Jar - Gym Class Heroes
Fly on the Wall - Miley Cyrus
Rehab - Rihanna
Do You Love Me - The Supremes *Another Classic

Hopefully these give you some new tunes to work out to!! If you need more ideas check out my previous playlists HERE. Enjoy :)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Deck the Halls with Holiday Goodies

The Holidays are most definitely upon us. From holiday parties adorned with endless trays of goodies, to holiday-cheer filled neighbors adorning your door step with endless goodies it's like being stuck in Willy Wonka's Chocolate factory for a month. A word to the careful. Don't let all your hard work go by the wayside. The average American eats a surplus of about 600 calories PER DAY during the holiday season. No, those two zero's aren't a type-o. 600 it is. Remember 3,500 calories = 1lb. You do the math. So what's a holiday lovin' girl (or boy, of course) to do? Here's a few thoughts...
1. Keep up your workout regimen. Times get even busier during the holidays its true. BUT don't let that throw off your workout routine. Keep burning those calories! Remember that eating more + burning less = uh oh....
2. De-junkify your environment. Have you ever found yourself aimlessly snacking on something that you don't even like just because it's there in front of you? You may love the Johnson family, but you don't have to show it by eating every single cookie on their gifted plate. Your options?
-Freeze them. Most baked goods will last a good three months when frozen. Then you can enjoy them with portion control in mind.
-Gather up all your goodies and take them to a holiday party. Everyone will think your uber-generous, and your home will be calorie-ridden!
-Throw them away (GASP!!!!) I know, I know. It sounds harsh and horrible, but the truth is....if it's sitting in front of you, you're probably going to eat it.
3. Pick your indulgences wisely. If you have a favorite holiday treat wait for it! I'm not trying to tell you that you can't have holiday goodies every now and again, but every holiday goodie that crosses your path??? Not so much. Limit yourself to one dessert. If you know you'll be indulging in some traditional holiday sweets towards the end of the week, be super good during the week. It's doable!
4. Don't Go Hungry. If you show up to a holiday soiree on an empty stomach you'll probably eat, snack, and taste test your way through the evening. Cheese, Egg-nog, Chocolate, Sugar Cookies, and the like. All of these things are surrounded by little red flags screaming "CALORIES!!" My advice to you. Eat a healthy meal beforehand. This doesn't give you the go ahead to eat two meals. But, if you arrive full you'll be less likely to make mindless eating choices from your stomach not your head.
5. Set some goals. There is NO written law anywhere saying you must gain weight during the holidays. I feel like a lot of people just give into the the Christmastime chaos and don't even try. Don't surrender! Why not continue to lose weight during the holidays? Set some goals to prove yourself right... Some examples could be; Attending the gym a certain number of times during the week, not eating sugar, only having one dessert day in the week, continuing to keep track of your calories, etc. You'll find that once you set a concrete goal instead of just saying "I'm going to try and do my best." You'll make progress!

These are just a few ideas. There are many things we can do to keep ourselves off the naughty list. Yes, New Years is close and it's great to set new health goals for ourselves when the resolutions come around. BUT, why not start now? Show the gingerbread man who's boss!