Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Make Lunch Happen Fast

One of the questions that I get from a lot of my clients is what they should eat for lunch. Breakfast is usually fairly easy because it is easy to whip up a quick and healthy breakfast for one. Dinner is usually cooked for a bigger group, which can be easier to plan for. Lunch, on the other hand, oftentimes requires thinking of something that is portioned for one. If you are trying to find healthy things you can eat at work, or even if you are trying to make something healthy for yourself while you are busy with kids during the day, trying to determine quick meals that fit the bill can be hard to do.

The easy thing to do when you are hungry for lunch might be to...take a bite of the kids mac n' cheese, run through the drive through, or grab handfuls of whatever is closest to you (enter goldfish, cereal, Doritos, wheat thins, etc. etc. etc.) While all of the things you are grabbing may not be unhealthy, they are not portion controlled, and just grabbing whatever you see might never fill you up. You could end up eating hundreds of unwanted calories. Being prepared for lunch is a great way to avoid binging on unhealthy items, and will keep you in control of your diet.

Healthy Lunchtime Do's...
- Purposely double your healthy dinner recipes, and save some leftovers with lunch in mind.
- Prepare some "go to items" for me this is grilled chicken, vegetables, and salad fixings.
- Fix the same food for you and your kids. No, this doesn't mean you should eat dino nuggets and mini corn dogs too. Maybe it means THEY should be eating fresh fruits and veggies & homemade hummus, a wrap, or sandwich on whole grain bread. A lot of the time parents assume their kids won't eat healthy foods without ever even offering them the chance. Expand their palates and test their taste buds!
- Crock pot it. Some of my all time favorite meals come in crock pot form. Have you made my crock pot cream cheese chicken chili yet? You's kinda my favorite. It also makes AWESOME leftovers.
- Keep quick items on hand. La tortilla factory wrap + PB + Banana slices = quick and healthy. Other items like whole wheat bagel or sandwich thins are great. I always have cottage cheese, string cheese, almonds, and fruits and veggies on hand that I can throw together. Keeping some good protein on hand at all times is smart too. Easy quick high protein lunches? Easy cheesy chili & Pesto Chicken Salad. There are a lot of great soup options that you can whip out in an instant and will make life much easier.
- Plan or pack your lunch the night before. If you are getting lunches ready for your kids or hubby, take the time to get one ready for you too. Preparation is the key to weight loss!
- If you have no time, don't let the drive through dictate your diet. Determine some healthy places you can get a quick salad (make it a healthy salad, read HERE for smart salad tips) or a whole wheat sandwich packed with lean protein and veggies.

Make an effort to make your lunches healthy. You will feel better, you will be able to make it through the day with more energy, and you won't be ravenous at dinner! Oh and if you are going to make Mac N' least make it Healthy Mac N' Cheese!

What is your go to lunch option? Do you eat leftovers a lot? Will your kids eat health foods?

Don't forget...only a few more days to enter the March Musicality Mix Giveaway!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Inagural Bike Ride and a Return to Paleo

The weather this weekend was awesome. I loved it. All I wanted to do was be outside. (Happy sigh) Because the weather was so great outside I got to dust of my sweet lil' beach cruiser, and SB and I for the first bike ride of the season! It was so much fun.
It made me almost wish I lived in a little place where I could just ride my bike allover all day...until we came home and I remembered that my pleasant bike ride quickly turns into what could be a hard core spin class. My bike has no gears, so hills give your legs a workout!

I started feeling much better on Saturday, and was actually able to eat. Awesome, I know. I stocked up on fresh goods at Costco, and I picked back up where I left off Paleo-wise. It seems like the majority of my diet is consisting of eggs, chicken, and roasted veggies.
 I have always loved roasted veggies, but I can't get enough these days. When time is short, and you want to be able to eat healthy just roast a big batch, and divvy them out for the days to come. Today I did a medley of broccoli, cauliflower, yellow squash, zucchini, carrots, and a sweet potato. SO GOOD. Try THIS recipe here. You will be so glad you did, promise.

Workout for the day
Cardio: 20 minutes of intervals on the elliptical
Weights: 50 minutes of full body

- 3 sets of 15 assisted pullups

3 sets of each alternating between each exercise:
- 12 single leg squats with a bicep curl on the left (15 lb)
- 12 single leg squats with a bicep curl on the right (15 lb)
- 12 squats with dumbbells (20 lb db)

3 sets of each alternating between each exercise:
- 12 chest flies with dumbbells (20 lb db)
- 12 triceps kick backs with dumbbells (15 lb db)
- 1 minute plank with 25 lb plate on my back

3 sets of each alternating between each exercise:
- 12 upright row to a dead lift
- 12 step ups on the right leg (quick tempo)
- 12 step ups on the left (quick tempo)

Ab Work
15 leg extension hip raises
20 leg climbers
15 pilates crunches
40 cherry pickers
20 v-sits


Have you been able to get outside and enjoy the warm weather yet? Do you like roasted veggies? If you have never tried them you really really need to!

Don't forget to enter my March Musicality Mix Giveaway! You have until Friday March 30th at Midnight!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

March Musicality Mix Giveaway!

Warmer temps than normal, sunshine, and a little bit of hope for summer...March is shaping up to be A-OK. Warmer temps means that running outside is actually an option! Running outside means there is a definite need for some new jams. Here is March's Mix Giveaway!!

So Good - B.O.B.
Wild Ones feat. Sia - Flo Rida
Is Anybody Out There feat. Nelly - Knaan
Part of Me - Kay Perry
Give Me All Your Luvin feat. M.I.A. - Madonna
Rack City - Tyga
Cinema feat. Gary Go & Skrillex - Benny Benassi
It's Time - Imagine Dragons
Some Nights - Fun.
Take Care feat. Rihanna - Drake
We Are Young feat. Janelle Monae - Fun.
Beautiful Killer - Madonna
Glad You Came - The Wanted
La La - The Cab
Simple Song - The Shins
U Know It Ain't Love feat. Pitbull - R.J.
Breakn' A Sweat - Skrillex
Eyes Open - Taylor Swift

To enter to win this month's playlist...
1) Become a follower (& leave a comment, or tell me you already are one!)
2) Tell me why YOU are happy for warmer weather.
3) Tweet about it, Facebook it, blog about it, pin it...etc. and tell me about it.

Good Luck!!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Friday Happy Thoughts

Things that are making me reaaaally happy today... 
- Last night I was invited to go Yogurtland's premier of Hunger Games. 
It was AWESOME. I was surprised at how much I really liked it. I am usually a pretty tough critic of books that are made into movies, and I thought they did a great job. My friends and I like to play the game of "would they make it as a pioneer crossing the plains..." and I always like to think that I would. I'm pretty tough...I can hold my own. After watching The Hunger Games and seeing their survival skills in the wilderness I have since changed my mind. I don't think I'd last. Is there a Pizza Factory Salad Bar Wagon on the wagon train??? Anyways...the movie rocked. Go see it, and Go get some yogurt from Yogurtland too. It's the best. Thank you Yogurtland!!

- I am feeling WAY better. I haven't been able to work out in a week, and I'm missing it. I've got my fingers crossed that tomorrow I'll be able to get in a good workout. I still don't have much of an appetite which is so weird to me. Normal Megan is ALWAYS hungry.

- It is Friday. Duh.

- I have been jamming to some great new tunes that are sure to make March's Playlist Giveaway...coming to you Sunday. New music + warm weather + windows down + sunshine = happiness. 

- The weather forecast for tomorrow and Sunday is saying 70 and 71. Yes please. You may just see me laying out in my grass. Just saying.

- I have found some amazing new healthy recipes to try via Pinterest. Do you pinterest? You can follow my healthy recipes board HERE my motivational board HERE, or my paleo board HERE.

Just a reminder that tomorrow is our last free Saturday Restore Yoga class at The Lab 7:30 AM. Be there! EVERYONE is invited. If you have questions about it, let me know!

What is making you happy today? Are you as excited about this awesome weather as I am? 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

One Stomach Flu Away From My Goal Weight...

I had a friend say that one time as a joke. I laughed pretty hard. After this week I don't think it's so funny. I caught the stomach flu Tuesday, and had to conquer that beast while flying on an airplane. I can tell you this much...I hope to never have to do that again. Ever. I have polished off a sleeve of saltine crackers this week and two sprite zero's from sonic...and that is about it.
I'm sure cavemen ate saltines, right?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Quick and Healthy Chicken Kabobs

One thing I miss about being home is the grill. My family loves to bbq. While I was home this week we had a meal that made me wish I had a grill of my own. We made delicious chicken kabobs with roasted veggies and they were so easy and delicious.
Chicken Kabobs:
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut up into one inch pieces
- zucchini
- yellow squash
- mushrooms
- onions
- red, yellow, and green peppers
- whatever other veggies you'd like to skewer.

Fire up your grill. Stack your veggies and meat on a skewer stick. Place them on the grill and season away. My brother in law seasoned ours with olive oil, salt, pepper, lowry's, and garlic salt. 
Allow your kabobs to cook for 8-10 minutes or until the chicken is cooked.
So tasty!
We had a greek salad on the side. Lettuce, avocados, tomatoes, red onion, yellow tomatoes, cucumbers, feta, and a sprinkle of parmesan. Topped with a dressing made of olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic seasoning, salt, and pepper. SO tasty. 
As the weather warms up and the bbq's come out, this is the perfect healthy go to meal. You can whip these up in moments, and it always hits the spot! You really can use any meat and vegetables that you like. Kabobs are also a fun meal for kids to help with because they will love helping to build their skewers!

What is your favorite quick way to fix up your meat?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Paleo On The Go (And other travel friendly eating tips)

I was surprised at how I was able to keep the paleo going over the weekend away. I had no idea what my eating situations were going to be, so I was pleasantly surprised. I know not all of you are looking to eat paleo, but because eating paleo could be synonymous with eating clean in many situations I think these tips could give some of you a few ideas of how to make eating out a little easier.

I personally think breakfast is the hardest meal when you are traveling or on the go. We had some continental breakfast options, so I was able to get some eggs. I also had some almonds and turkey jerky that I had brought with me in case I needed them.
Sometimes bringing your own goods is the only way to know you are going to be prepared. You CAN bring nuts, fruit, and jerky in your suitcase with you. Other non-paleo options...oatmeal packets, protein bars, pre-made healthy muffins. Avoid having to go to the convenience store. Look around for restaurants or locations that serve healthy breakfast options.
Stop in at Starbucks, Denny's or even Mcdonalds for some oatmeal. Just promise to skip over the hotcakes...
We went to a nearby Whole Foods one morning for breakfast and it was SO GOOD.
I ended up with some eggs, fruit, grilled zucchini, and some pulled chicken with a little Teriyaki sauce. It was tasty.  

Lunch and dinner could probably be one and the same as far as do's and don'ts, but I'll split them up for the purpose of showing food you can choose vs. food that has been ordered for you. It just so happens that for both lunches in San Diego we had Mexican food. In eating out, I am a believer that you can find something just about anywhere you go. You simply have to be willing to stick to your plan. 

Lunch #1 was at Chipotle. I had never been there before and it was SO delicious. I ordered the chicken salad, with no beans and no rice. I added in grilled vegetables, and told them to load on the fresh salsa. Salsa is an AWESOME option when it comes to adding flavor without calories. I topped it off with some guacamole. YUM. This was perfectly paleo.

 Lunch #2 was at some hole in the wall mexican restaurant. You know, the kind where everything is doused in cheese and basted in lard. A definite caloric disaster in the making. Things to avoid in these scenarios...the chip basket, excess cheese, tortillas, and depending on the rest of your diet...rice and beans. Most restaurants cook their beans and tortillas with lard. If you are eating paleo the rice, beans, and tortillas aren't an option anyways, so it doesn't matter. I avoided the chips and salsa, and ordered another chicken salad. The salad came in a tostada shell which I left alone. I ordered my salad without beans and cheese. It came with lettuce, grilled chicken, veggies, salsa, fresh avocado slices, and tomatoes. It was tasty!
When ordering out I'd suggest you skip the bread baskets. Pick options that have a good amount of protein and lower amounts of carbs. Ask how meals are prepared if you are watching certain ingredients and don't be afraid to make special requests. Also, feel free to oder a combo of sides to make up your meal.

Today my mom and I went to one of my favorite places, Pita Jungle, for lunch. I ordered a side of grilled chicken and a side of grilled veggies. It was AWESOME.
Dinner: For both dinner options we had food pre ordered for us. Sometimes this is life. Not being in control of what you are ordering doesn't have to mean you go buckwild and ruin your good eating streak.
For our first meal we had bruchetta with artichoke dip, a green salad with chicken and veggies, a few different choices of pizza, and cake. I bypassed the bruchetta, loaded up on the salad, took a small piece of bbq chicken pizza, and bypassed the cake. I actually just ate the chicken off the pizza and didn't eat the rest of it. Nobody took note of what I was or wasn't eating. It is just a matter of sticking to what you are trying to accomplish.
Our second dinner was a dinner roll, a small dinner salad, chicken, green beans, potatoes, and wedding cake. I didn't take a roll, ate my salad, ate my chicken and green beans and passed on the potatoes and cake. I was perfectly fine, and once again, nobody took notice of what I did and didn't eat. Now, in some scenarios you may not have options that coincide with your health eating plan. In these situations, just do the best you can. Don't overdo it on the bread baskets or desserts. If you know your main course is something that doesn't align with your usual diet, don't make matters worse by caving completely into your appetizer and dessert.

Do the best you can, and you will be glad you did!

Do you have a hard time eating on vacation? Which meals seem to be the most difficult for you? How do you get by when you have food ordered for you?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

She's a MRS. !!!

She did it. I had SUCH a fun weekend in San Diego with some of my best friends in the whole world as we watched Benita get married!

Here are some of my instagram highlights!  Doesn't she look beautiful? They are a DARLING couple!
 I even managed to keep up my Paleo eating while I was there. I'll be giving you the run down of my menu later.

Unfortunately, the weather decided to disagree with us all weekend. It was pretty chilly and rainy! I'm in AZ now...ready for some sun to shine!

Bon Voyage

Best friend.
San Diego here I come. My best friend, Miss Benita is getting married!!!!!
Take off.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A KILLER TUESDAY Circuit. Why? Because I said so.

Isn't it about time for a new circuit? That is what I thought. Today's circuit is an AWESOME calorie burner. It will have you sweating, burning tons of calories, and burning fat. All. Good. Things. The point of this circuit is for you to keep your heart rate high the WHOLE time. The quicker you bust through these exercises, the better. My recommendation? Pump up the energizing jams and picture yourself busting through these exercises like the athlete you are. Get ready...this is a fun one. :)

5 minute warm up (jog, elliptical, jumping jacks, etc.)

- 20 Box Jumps (You can do these on a bench/stairs/chair/or box platform. You want to jump up and land with both feet on the bench and then back down on the ground. No resting!)
- 15 Up downs (standing position, hands on the ground, jump feet back laying body flat on the ground face down, feet jump in and stand up)
- 15 push ups

- 40 high knees (20 on each side)
- 15 Squat curl presses with dumbbells/bar/medicine ball
- 1-2 minute plank

- 20 squat jumps
- 20 walking lunges holding dumbbells
- 15 burpees (standing position, jump back to push up position, pushup, feet jump in, jump up hands in the air)

- 15 push ups
- 15 cherry pickers on each side
- 40 quick mountain climbers

Wipe of your sweat, and pat yourself on the back because YOU'RE DONE!!
This will be a KILLER, but it is so doable. These are the types of workouts that give you results because your heart rate is high, you are burning calories, you are working ALL of your muscle groups, and you are busting out that cardio all at the same time. TRY IT!!

Oh...and do you know what is glorious...this is.

Do you like circuit workouts? Do you want more of them??  I am a huge fan because they are so efficient, and I think they are a heck of a lot more fun to do!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Family Sunday and a New Circuit Workout

It has been an incredibly beautiful weekend here in UT. My family came in town for the weekend, and we decided to go up to Salt Lake for the day yesterday to hang out with my brother, and enjoy the sunshine. We went to music and the spoken word at temple square in the morning.

 It was so awesome. If you are ever visiting Utah over a weekend you should totally go.

 Even the kiddies enjoyed themselves.
 It was such a pretty day just to walk around temple square and enjoy the amazing blue sky. If you are ever in Utah you should pay this pretty place a visit. 
 I love whenever my family comes in town. This occasion was no different. :) We are constantly laughing. Such a good time.

 My family is just as camera happy as I am.
 We finished the afternoon at my brothers house reading the Guinness book of world records, and playing with some hula hoops. Turns out hula hooping is a total core workout! How long has it been since you've hula hooped it up?
Did you know that the record for number of push ups done in a 24 hour period is 46,001? My family calculated out how this is even humanly possible, and how one might train to accomplish this goal. INSANE.

The record for non stop push ups is 10,507.
Push ups done in one hour? 3,877
One armed push ups done in 5 hours? 8,794 Seriously...can you even imagine that?
and my favorite...
The number of push ups done with hands on raw eggs? 312 How is that even possible?
(Facts found HERE.

One thing I always test with my clients is the number of push ups they can do. Push ups are an AWESOME indication of upper body strength. It allows both me and my client to see how they are progressing. Take this push up strength test, and see how you measure up!

- Begin in push up position with your hands shoulder width apart, palms flat, on your toes. (You can modify this by dropping to your knees, but you have to be sure your hips are in line with your body. No butts up in the air!)
- Do a push up so your elbows reach a full 90 degree angle.
- Push back up to starting position.
This counts as one rep. Do as many reps in a row without stopping as you can.
This chart will help you determine your strength levels. 

Do you hate push ups? Love them? How many can you do?? You should learn to love them if you don't because they are the BEST upper body workout. They work that core like crazy too!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

The Yoga Lab and a Paleo Update

Happy Saturday! This morning I started off my day bright and early at The Yoga Lab (at The Lab) with some restorative yoga. I honestly don't think I couldn't have started my day ANY better. I forget how much I really like yoga until I take the time to do it. It always feels so good to really stretch and strengthen your body, and to have the time to do some relaxation and meditation. SO SO SO great.
If you are in Utah county, or if you are looking for a road should come do some Saturday yoga with me! We are offering free a free restorative Yoga Class every Saturday morning from 7:30-8:45 for the month of March. The teacher is AWESOME, and It really will start your Saturday off right. If you'd like more info about it leave me your email address!

I had planned to do a long run today, but I decided to mix it up a bit. I did 95 minutes of intervals on the elliptical instead. I watched this past week's episode of The Biggest Loser while I worked out, and I was completely captivated. If you are looking for something to motivate you while you are working out that will certainly do the trick.

I have had a few of you ask for some updates on how my first week of paleo has gone. Here it goes in bullet-ted form...because that is just the way I do things. 
- Breakfast was the hardest transition for me. This week I have either had 3 whole eggs or 3 oz of turkey jerky and some berries. Turkey jerkey for breakfast? I know...weird. Cody gave me the tip to check out Costco's natural turkey jerky. It is the Oh Boy Oberto! brand,  and it is so good. It is a great snack you can take with you for those of you who are looking to eat some protein on the go.
- I haven't felt hungry. I am eating a TON of veggies, fruits, and lean proteins. Ok, I should rephrase that...I get hungry when it is time to eat, but I eat my good meals and then I feel satisfied. I don't go to bed feeling hungry in the slightest.
- There have definitely been ups and downs. It hasn't been entirely easy. The food plan itself requires will power, planning, and determination to stick to it. My philosophy in life with a healthy diet is the 80 percent rule. I think that 80 percent of how you look is diet, and 20 percent is exercise. I also think that if you can eat perfectly 80 percent of the time, you can stand to be not so perfect the other 20 percent. I'd say with this past week I have been pretty on my game. I did not tell myself I was going to give up my diet dr pepper one hundred percent, because I was already feeling like I was giving up a LOT. So, I told myself I was going to do my absolute best to not drink it because all artificial sweeteners are out in the paleo plan, and I think it is better to not drink it. I am pretty proud of myself in that area. I went all week without even a drop. I did have one today though, and I sure did savor it.
- I have HAD to be prepared. I had to be sure I had fresh produce and good protein. Funny how all of the convenience foods are the foods we should probably eat less of, and yet we usually end up eating more.
- I have eaten a LOT of chicken. It's times like these that I wish I liked fish... 
- I am down two pounds on the scale
- I am loving that I have coworkers and clients doing this with me. It is always so great to have a support system to bounce ideas off of.
- I think the first week of anything is the hardest! So, I'm excited to see how next week treats me :)

Do you practice yoga? Do you have any awesome healthy chicken recipes that I should be trying to mix things up??

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Crock pot Coconut Chicken Curry

I have been doing some experimenting with my food these past couple days. I have been strapped for time, and wanting to eat good home cooked meals, so I of course turned to my right hand man, the crock pot. Last night's menu consisted of something way out of my norm, curry anyone? Sure. I couldn't find a recipe I loved, so I just did what I do best and created my own.

Crock pot Coconut Chicken Curry
Serves 4

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 medium yellow onion chopped
2 medium tomatoes chopped (you could use 1 can of diced tomatoes) 
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp of chili powder (you can increase this if you like more heat)
1 can of coconut milk
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
3 TBS curry powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1 TBS olive oil

Combine these ingredients in the crock pot and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8. I ate mine all by it's lonesome, but you could easily serve it over brown rice to make it a little more hearty. I think that it would be delicious to add some diced yellow and red peppers, carrots, or potatoes to up the veggie count as well. This would be a great meal to make ahead for a busy week. I actually really liked the taste of it reheated because the flavors had a chance to set in.

Do you like curry? Do you have a go to recipe? I could insert a rhyme here about how this is curry is perfect meal when you're in a hurry...but I won't. ;)

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Paleo Day 1...check.

Thanks so much for your comments, tips, and concerns with my last post. I know that everyone has had different experiences with the way the choose to eat and exercise, and I love hearing all about it! I know some people are wondering what exactly I will be eating for the next 21 days as I explore the Paleo way of life. I won't be posting all of it, but I have a great feeling that some good new recipes will be coming out of this, so I'm going to share some of my eating with y'all.

3 whole eggs with some seasoning sprinkled on top
A handful of grape tomatoes

A Big Ole' Salad
Organic baby spinach, lightly steamed broccoli and carrots, 4 oz of hormone free diced chicken, 1/4 small hass avocado, and some salsa for dressing. 
a handful of blackberries

a medium sized braeburn apple

Grilled Chicken
roasted asparagus drizzled in olive oil sprinkled with sea salt and garlic
and about 6 almonds and some grape tomatoes I snacked on while I waited for dinner to cook

sliced strawberries and a few blackberries
I wasn't hungry when I went to bed, but I did find myself wishing I had some frozen yogurt. Not out of  hunger, but out of a love for the cold goodness! 

My workout for the day was a two mile recovery run...and that is it. 
I exercised my mouth a lot as we GASPED at the bachelor's women tell all last night. My goodness, welcome to crazy town. 

Do you ever use salsa in place of dressing? I used to all the time, and I kinda forgot about it. SO delicious. 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Prime{al} Time

You know that I am not one of those people who is in to fad diets. Not in the slightest. I have always believed that following healthy eating principles is the way to go. I always try to help my clients get into the habit of eating foods closest to their natural forms. In doing this you rid your diet of processed foods that can be full of added chemicals, sugars, and additives that can be extremely unhealthy for you. Consistency of good habits is where it's at people.

I have had a lot of friends and coworkers in the past few years that have decided to follow a Paleolithic form of eating. This idea is very similar to the method of eating that I have already been following, but with some added strictness. The basic idea behind paleo eating is to follow the basic diet that a caveman would eat. I have been reading up on this type of lifestyle, and have never really thought I would be able to stick to it because, as you know, I don't love meat. However, I have been wanting to get a little more strict with my diet, and change up my exercise routine, and I feel like adapting what I eat closer to this method may be beneficial for me.
I have been reading a book called The Primal Blueprint, and the main idea this book expresses that the paleo way of eating is cutting out ALL processed foods and sugar. Yep...all of them. In doing so you help your body to become a fat burning machine instead of always just burning up the carbohydrates that we tend to feed ourselves day in and day out.

Now, I still believe in whole grains. BUT, I am also always willing to give something new, that sounds reasonable and healthy, a shot. of TODAY I plan to...
- Eliminate all processed foods. Harder than it may sound. No sweeteners, no sugar free anything, not even any honey.
- Build my meals around lean protein, fresh veggies, fresh fruits, nuts, and good fats.
- Eliminate grains and legumes (This is going to be the hardest part for me. No oatmeal, no peanut butter, no beans, no Kashi cereal when I need something quick. YIKES.) The reasoning behind this is because of the way they are processed. Oftentimes these items activate an insulin response which can cause your body to store fat.
- Increase good fats. This is a crazy one for me as well because although I do include some good fats in my diet, I generally keep my fat percentages on the low end. The primal way of eating encourages a higher fat content with the notion that as you cut out the excess carbohydrates and sugar, your body then uses fat as fuel. The fear of fats that has been instilled in our overweight population has come from the fact that most high fat diets are also high in sugar and refined carbohydrates. The combination of a great deal of sugar, refined carbs, AND a great deal of fat can be deadly.
- Decrease chronic exercise. This is also a really tough thing for me to wrap my mind around, but I'm going to try it. (At least for 21 days.) Exercise is my stress relief, but I have also just always counted it as part of my job. I exercise everyday for sometimes two hours a day. According to a lot of reading I've done both recently, and in the past, the body can become almost numb to these high amounts of exercise. I am still training for my marathon, so I will have some endurance workouts still. BUT not everyday. I'm going to change up my routine.

My shopping list today looked like this...
- hormone free chicken
- eggs
- greek yogurt
- almonds
- broccoli
- carrots
- onion
- asparagus
- berries
- bananas
- baby spinach
- cherry tomatoes
- lemon
- apples
- balsamic vinegar
- salsa

Looks pretty tasty right? goes nothing. I am excited to challenge myself with something new. I may hate this and go back to my normal bowl of oatmeal for breakfast, but AT LEAST the next twenty-one days I'm committed to sticking to this way of eating as much as I possibly can. I really don't think of this as a fad diet, but a VERY very VERY clean way of eating.

Have you ever eaten Paleo? What did you love or hate about it? Any tips for me?

Saturday, March 3, 2012

February Photo Challenge In Review

I have already told you how much I adore Instagram. You can follow my photos HERE. Last month I did the photo a day challenge, and I loved it.
 Fun stuff. 
Do you Instagram?