Real Food Fast

Working in the Fitness field, I am always bombarded with constant complaints about how hard it is to eat healthy on the go.

While I understand that it takes time to make a bunch of chicken breasts, cook up some Quinoa, roast sweet potatoes and chop veggies for the week, some things are just worth taking the time to do. And if you truly want to see results, this is one of those tasks that you must be willing to take on for the sake of your health, and all of your hard work in the gym.

However, for clients of mine who just can’t seem to find the motivation to do this (shame on you) I offer some helpful alternatives that make eating healthy seem a bit easier.

Wherever your day may lead, these are all great choices to take on the go. So grab a lunch box, shopping bag or purse, and pack it with these nutritious and filling foods that will keep your diet clean, lean, and on the right track.

Fruit: Bananas, Apples, Kiwi, and Citrus fruits..anything with Skin. You can also pack a small Tupperware container with Berries, Pineapple, Watermelon, etc.

Veggies: Celery sticks, Carrot Sticks, Sliced Bell Peppers, Grape Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Snap Peas, Asparagus Spears, Ziploc bags of Baby Spinach as a base for a salad, or Collard Greens used as a wrap.

Complex Carbs: Individual cups of Brown Rice. Rolled Oats. Whole Grain Wraps for a sandwich, Brown Rice Cakes, Microwave ready Sweet Potatoes

Protein: Can or Packet of Tuna/Salmon. Low Sodium Sliced Turkey Breast, Beans, Greek Yogurt, Cottage Cheese, Hard boiled eggs, Whey/Brown Rice Protein Powder.

Healthy Fats and Energy Boosting Snacks: Natural Almonds, Walnuts, Pistachios, Hemp/Flax/Chia/Sunflower seeds, Nut Butters, Hummus, Avocado, Coconut Oil/Flakes.

Combine a few to make a delicious Trail Mix that wards off afternoon hunger!

Bars: Lara Bar, Kind Bar, Think Thin Bar, Luna Bar

Hydration: Water, Green Tea, Seltzer Water.

Add Lemon, Lime, Mint, Cucumber, or frozen fruit for a natural sweetener throughout the day.

Instead of filling your fridge, pantry, and body with empty calories, choose nutrient packed foods that will keep you feeling fuller, longer!

“Grab and Go” does not have to mean fast food. It can mean healthy food…fast!

Throw It Away

SO..How was your Easter weekend?

Did you have to do a lot of Burpees?

I’ll be honest…I’m gonna be Burpeeing all week from eating lots of this..

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Pizzagaina

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Antipasto

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desserts, wine, and lots of sweet and salty snacks in between.

However, every bite was worth every burpee, and I’m back to my usual eating habits of nutrient packed breakfast smoothies, lean proteins, fruits, veggies, and the devil himself…the Stairmaster.

  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • 1 scoop vanilla sunwarrior protein
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 1 Tbsp ground flax
  • 1/2 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla coconut almond milk
  • ice

  • 1 frozen banana
  • 3/4 cup pasteurized liquid egg whites
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 1 tbsp. ground flax
  • 1 cup water
  • ice

Oh the Stairmaster. You kick my butt every time.

I am the type of person who enjoys food on the holiday itself, and then it’s back to regular eating.

Knowing that there is leftover pies, cookies, and salty side dishes sitting in my fridge is not something that I recommend, especially if you are the type of person who tends to mindlessly pick at them throughout the day,  which is most likely all of us.

If this is the case, GET RID OF IT!

Yes you may be wasting food, but that is no excuse to eat dessert for 5 days straight because you feel guilty that someone brought it.

The holiday is over…move on.

This is called tough love.

You’ll thank me later.

xoxo

Protein Cupcakes!

Dark Chocolate Coconut Protein Cupcakes.

  • 2 scoops Vanilla Sunwarrior Protein Powder
  • 1/4 cup Coconut Flour
  • 3 Tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips (or more Smile)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 3 egg whites
  • 2 Tbsp Agave Nectar
  • 2 Tbsp coconut extract
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla coconut almond milk

Pour ingredients into greased cupcake pan and bake for about 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

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Frosting

  • 2 Tbsp + 1 tsp Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter
  • 3 Tablespoons plain Fage 0% Greek yogurt
  • 1 packet of Stevia in the Raw.

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Shower with cinnamon, an additional dark chocolate chip, and enjoy!

Steel Cut Oats

I have been loving steel cut oats in the morning.

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mixed with egg whites, banana and peanut butter

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Vanilla Sunwarrior protein, cinnamon and blueberries

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Sunwarrior protein, peanut flour and chopped apple.

When it comes to Oats, there are three main types with three main differences,

Taste, Texture, and Time.

Starting from the least processed…

  • Steel Cut Oats- whole raw oats cut into chunks with a nutty flavor and chewy texture. Take longer to cook (15-20 mins)
  • Old Fashioned Rolled Oats- whole oats rolled flat, steamed slightly for quicker cooking (3-5 mins). Bland in flavor.
  • Quick cooking oats-slightly ground up oats for quick cooking (2-3 mins) Bland in flavor.

If you’re like me, and prefer a chewier bowl of oats, you will love the steel cut version.

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They are more dense that regular oats, and once cooked, have a similar texture to brown rice.

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To cut down on cooking time, mix 1/4 cup oats with 3/4 cups water and heat for 2 minutes in the microwave before placing it in the fridge overnight.

In the morning, heat your oats and add your favorite topping such as fruit, nuts, honey and spices for an all-star breakfast that will keep you feeling full and satisfied.

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Which type of oats do you prefer?

What’s On Your Plate?

Before we get to the wonderful world of food, here is a glimpse of this weeks Spin Playlist for you to rock out to during your next cardio session.

spin list

Yup, Ricky Martin is back and ready to help me push you through a killer workout!

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Woohoo!

Now let’s fuel shall we?…

Oats of all flavors…

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  • Oatmeal with egg whites, banana, cinnamon and peanut flour
  • Oat Bran with egg whites, chopped apple and Sunflower seed butter

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so addictive.

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Blueberry scone oats: mix raw oats, peanut flour, vanilla Sunwarrior (or protein of choice) and enough water to combine. Leave in the fridge overnight, and in the morning, top with blueberries.

Add more water if necessary. Heat or serve cold.

Ground Turkey with jalapenos and red bell pepper

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Sweet potatoes, my fav!

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Rainbow salads with kale, tilapia, veggies and hemp seeds. Topped with Rice Vinegar.

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And my go-to dessert…

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Hershey’s Dark chocolate cocoa powder mixed with water and stevia in the raw, poured over 1/2 cup of frozen mixed berries.

Top with a spoonful of plain Greek yogurt and slivered almonds or walnuts for extra staying power while you sleep!

Complex carbs, healthy fats, proteins and greens…I’ve got it covered!

So..What’s on your plate?

Peas and Crayons

Be Stronger Than Your Excuses

I will not mention the weather because I don’t want to jinx it, so lets move on….

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The hardest part about starting a workout program is finding the motivation to do so. We all have excuses as to why exercise and eating well is not a part of our weekly routine, but the truth is, no excuse is good enough when it comes to taking care of our body.

If you have to wake up an hour early, do it. If you have to come home an hour late, do it. If you have to cook a bunch of chicken and chop up vegetables for the week on Sunday, DO IT!

See the pattern here?

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Stop allowing your mind to tell you that you can’t, because eventually, if you keep neglecting your health, you really will not be able to.

As soon as you begin to head down the path towards a balanced life, everything will suddenly feel lighter, both mentally and physically.

Start now. If not now, when?

Here are some tips that I recommend to clients who are struggling with finding a healthy balance.

Figure out what works for you and stick to it.

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Put yourself first. Everything else can wait an hour until you are finished.

Make your breakfast the night before so that it is ready in the fridge for the following day. Oatmeal, eggs, green protein smoothies, or fruit with nuts and yogurt are all great “grab and go” meals.

Use your Sunday as prep. Make a batch of proteins such as chicken, lean ground turkey, beans, or hard boiled eggs. Chop all of your vegetables and set them in Tupperware containers, along with a carb such as brown rice, sweet potatoes, or quinoa. All you have to do is pick what you want, pack it up, and go.

  • Make sure to also add a healthy fat to each meal, such as almonds, flaxseeds, coconut oil, avocado, or hummus.

Craving sweets? Grab a piece of fruit with a small handful of mixed nuts, make a cup of sweet tea, or drink a glass of water.

  • Try and figure out why your sweet tooth is acting up, and fix the problem right then. Ask yourself: Did I eat enough at lunch? Drink enough water? Have a healthy fat with my meal? If so, and your body really just wants a taste of the good stuff, snack on a small piece of dark chocolate.

Acknowledge that you are eating it, savor it, and move on.

Spice up your life. You do not need to add cream sauces, butter, or high sodium marinades to your food. Herbs and spices, lemon juice, and fresh tomato sauce can add an abundance of flavor to any dish.

Check the Online menu. Before you head out to dinner, look over the online menu so that you have time to figure out what you want to eat. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for a vegetable medley or salad in place of pasta, or to change the way your meal is prepared. Most restaurants are more than happy to accommodate you.

GREEN FLAG

Baked
Boiled
Broiled
Fresh
Grilled
Red sauce
Roasted
Seasoned
Steamed
Vinaigrette
Whole Wheat

RED FLAG

Au gratin
Basted
Battered
Hollandaise
“Bet you can’t finish it”
Bottomless
Breaded
Buttery / Buttered
Casserole
Cheesy
Country-style
Covered
Creamed / Creamy
Crispy
Crunchy
Escalloped
Fried / Deep fried
Giant
Loaded
Platter
Smothered
Stewed
Stroganoff
Stuffed
Value
Volcano
White Sauce”

source

Your water bottle is your best friend. Always have it by your side.

  • Try adding lemon, cucumber, or orange slices for a refreshing boost of flavor, along with a cup of decaf tea throughout the day.

Always have a challenge in mind, and make it your mission to achieve it.

  • “I will run 1 extra minute today”. “I will try Yoga this weekend”. “I will perform a push up” “I will walk into the weight section with confidence, and bang out some bicep curls like the best of ‘em!”.

Pack your gym clothes for the next day in a bag by the front door, or lay them out so you can quickly get dressed and start your morning off right. Or…sleep in them!

Don’t think of exercise as a chore. It should be something that you enjoy because it makes you look and feel good. Figure out what type of exercise interests you, and use that as your starting point.

  • Incorporate cardio, strength training, and stretching into your routine, and if you are unsure about how to perform a certain movement, or how to work a piece of equipment, be sure to ask a trainer at your gym, or the class instructor. It is their JOB to help you.

If it feels too easy, it probably is.

  • If you don’t feel like you’re working out, then bump up the intensity. Don’t be afraid to sweat, or feel the burn when lifting weights. Those moments of discomfort are what change and challenge our body.

Realize that everyone is here for the same reason. The gym can be an intimidating place at first, but it’s important to realize that nobody is any better than another when it comes to exercise. Our goals may vary, but the fact that we are taking care of ourselves is what we all have in common.

All you need is yourself, and a little room. If you do not have a gym membership, use your living room as your workout area and your body as resistance. Push ups, squats, jumping jacks and mountain climbers are all challenging movements that target a large group of muscles and speed up the metabolism.

Remember why you are doing this. Whether it is for weight loss, muscle tone, lowering cholesterol, or stress management, remember why you are taking the time to workout and eat well. As the weeks pass, you will no longer need the reminder. It will become a part of your life that will continue to benefit you in more ways than one.

A healthy body is a happy body. Take care of yourself because no one else will. You are your own worst enemy, and best friend all in one. Become one with yourself, listen to your body, and begin to feel amazing.

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Peas and Crayons