OPERATION SKINNY JEANS

Happy Tuesday!!! You know, the thing I love most about health and fitness is it’s always a journey, there is always something new to experiment with. And that is what I did this last 90 days. I started experimenting with macros. What I noticed were two things, as someone who is just recovering from an eating disorder (1 year now, 6 month purge free) tracking my calories was causing me HUGE anxiety and the number on the scale kept going up. I’m not much of a numbers girl, tracking calories just isn’t for me and I don’t care to see the number on the scale because it doesn’t DEFINE me. I go by how my clothes fit me, but I do know where I’m most comfortable at. So with 1 week left in my 90 day challenge I decided to pull the plug on counting macros and go back to what has been working for me the CCS, CONTAINER COUNTING SYSTEM, this system ENSURES I’m eating ENOUGH food and that is where my struggle is. After just 1 week I’m very excited to be feeling leaner and less anxious. Nutrition is still a huge hurdle for me and the color coded system takes the anxiety away. As long as I’m journaling my containers, I’m staying on track. When I was counting macros my nutrition about 50/50, counting calories caused to much anxiety and I was noticing myself skipping meals. I can honestly say that I was lacking energy, I was not feeling my usual vibrant and motivated self and I’m pretty sure it had to do with the fact that I wasn’t eating enough food, maybe a little too much processed food and not enough water! When you eat clean, even after just a week and then you have a little backslide your body is going to let you know it for sure!
After a week of being back to the CCS and no processed foods I feel AMAZING and decided enough is enough! I am ready to continue this and am going to start fresh on Monday. I’m committed to doing Body Beast to a T!

My GOALS:

1. Keep the sugar cravings away for good.
2. Start consistently getting in my water intake for the day. 1/2 my body weight in ounces of water daily.
3. Use my tracking sheet and journaling to make sure I get in my daily recommendation of foods.
4. Take time each day to read my personal development to keep my mind fresh.
5. Get at least 7 hours of sleep each night.

Nothing better than a little PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY to keep me on track! I’m hoping that together we can keep each other accountable! I know that no one is perfect, we are all human and we all get off course but what matters is we get back on the HEALTHY LIVING train. Being able to share my own personal struggles with you and inspire you to keep going in the right direction is what keeps me going!

pic-monkey

What season is here? You got it, jeans and sweater season! Yes, it is time to pull those skinny jeans back out of the closet and I am here to give you EXTRA accountability because there is nothing worse than pulling up those jeans and feeling your muffin top ooze over the top of your pants! UGH…the frustration, it’s like instant bad because you don’t like the way that you feel.
I want to help you find confidence and happiness again just like I was able to do. I want to show you how to how you can have your cake and eat it too! I want to provide you with the same support that my coach gave to me!

I am going to be kicking off the plan and prep week to my 6 week Operation Skinny Jeans Group on Monday September 19th. This is a 6 week closed online support and accountability group. My goal is to teach you how to meal plan, how to make healthier, higher quality food choices, help you to manage your cravings for sweets, deal with the temptations of the approaching Halloween Holiday, how to handle eating out, traveling and everything else life throws our way.
I like to start out the first week with no workouts but really focusing on your mindset. I want to help you set realistic and achievable goals for yourself, I want to teach you about nutrition and healthy choices, give you sample meal plans, snack ideas and more.

A full Skinny JEANS MEAL PLAN for you!!!

Then we will start the workouts! There are so many workout choices available to you and a lot of the programs are 30 minutes or less! Choose any Team Beachbody Fitness program, don’t worry I will help you choose the one that is right for you based on your own fitness level and current needs. The 21 Day Fix is by far my favorite because it will help you overhaul your nutrition, whether your eating too much or like me not eating enough, and the CCS can be use with any workout program even NON Beachbody! Plus the 21 Day Fix workouts are great, they give you modifications at each and every level.

Also the next requirement is that I am your Team Beachbody Coach. To have me as your coach it is free of charge and you would just create an account on my site! Then, I would walk you through the next steps to get started.

Lastly, each person is required to replace 1 meal a day with Shakeology for the 6 weeks of the group. The reason is this. Shakeology is not a protein shake. Its not comparable to Slim Fast or any other shake! It’s like comparing apples to oranges. When you look at Shakeology you are seeing high quality ingredients that are not processed, there are no artificial sweeteners or flavorings and it is going to help you lose weight because it’s portion controlled and it has the right carb to protein ratio that your body needs to make up a complete meal. You can choose any meal during the day to replace with Shakeology. I always suggest you choose the meal that you struggle with the most, for me that’s breakfast! YOU DON’T HAVE TO COMMIT FOREVER, but give it 30 days! It will help the transition to clean eating easier, it will help you get better results because your body is getting proper nutrition and can recover faster and at the end of the 6 weeks we can re evaluate to see where to go from here!
Each day you will log into the closed online accountability group. There will be a daily post from me. The posts will have either a tip on clean eating, a recipe, motivation or accountability. Each person is required to check in each day and report their day for accountability.

It is a safe place to come and know that you have people just like you to help get you through any obstacles that come with reaching your health and fitness goals. Honestly if it wasn’t for the challenge groups for me I personally would not be where I am today! It’s hard to look back and remember that person in those before pictures! But, if I can do it. So can you!!!
So are you in??? I know I AM! I spent some time this morning looking around Pinterest for some skinny jeans inspiration and here is what I found! I created myself a skinny jeans collage for my own fall fashion! It gave me some new style ideas and it gave me something to look forward to! Are you in? Just because we are Moms, or almost 40 or have busy lives, doesn’t mean we still can’t rock our skinny jeans! Lets do this!!! Are you with me?!

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To reserve a spot in my Skinny Jeans Challenge Group please complete the application below! There is a limited number of spaces and its first come first get!

Why I Shakeo

shakeology-poster
I have to be honest. I did not start Beachbody drinking Shakeology, I started P90X in 2009 continuing on for 6 years without Shakeology. I have another confession: I’m cheap when it comes to me, not my kids just me. I don’t spend money on nice purses, getting my nails done or even expensive clothes….Well, unless they are workout clothes and I even always look for deals for those too!!! I admit, I do splurge on running shoes, but still, I wait until they are on sale. I save coupons, shop the bargain bins, I wait for sales, Yup, I’m not really one of those types that runs out and spends a lot of money on themselves.

So why am I willing to spend $130 a month (less if you’re a coach) on a meal replacement shake? Because my body deserves to be spoiled after all that it is doing for me.

When you break it down, it comes out to less than $4 a day. Think of all the days you run to Duncan Donuts or Starbucks. How about when you got out and grab a “healthy” sandwich? The average 6 inch sub is at least $5 (but we all know the good ones are way more!!). Four dollars a day for a healthy meal! That’s INSANELY cheap!

The formula is a combination of amino acids, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, enzymes, phytonutrients and rare adaptogens. To get all that in one place is insanity!! Think about if you bought all those items separtely? You would be spending well above $130 a month.

mcdonalds

Well when your health fails and you know it’s in your hands and it’s now or never, it’s time to get healthy again, you’ll listen, you’ll believe and you’ll try anything right? MAYBE! I made a commitment to give Shakeology a shot. And guess what? I did, for 3 FREIKEN days!! TRUTH be told, I wasn’t ready to commit to a better me! After 2 months of still not feeling well I decided to REALLY try Shakeology……Once I gave it a “REAL” try and committed to it for 30 days, I LOVED it! I loved the taste, I loved the glow it gave me, I loved the energy it gave me, I loved my skin and my hair, and now after being on it a full year I LOVE that I no longer suffer from incapacitating migraines. I love knowing all the nutrients it is providing my body with.

Each serving packs up to 17g of protein along with whole-food nutrition from some of the most nutrient-dense superfoods on the planet; does your current protein shake pack that kind of punch?

So when do I Shakeo? I usually have my Shakeology for breakfast right after my workout.

Another advantage – the many flavors (including vegan options). There are a TONS of recipe ideas on Pinterest (well all over the Internet really). Does your protein Shake allow for a daily change in flavor? Probably not. I’m going to guess you’re drinking the same flavor EVERY DAY!
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What’s in Shakeology?
Protein and Essential Amino Acids to help build muscle and reduce food cravings*

[Whey, Pea, Chia, Quinoa, Amaranth, Flax, Sacha Inchi; Vegan Protein Blend also includes Pea, Rice, and Oat Protein.]
• Help build and repair muscles
• Reduce hunger and food cravings
• Promote healthy skin, hair, and nails
Prebiotics, Probiotics and Digestive Enzymes, which aid in improving digestion, regularity, and nutrient absorption*
[Yacon Root, Chicory Root, Lactobacillus, Sporogenes , Amylase, Cellulase, Lactase, Glucoamlase, Alpha-Galactosidase, Invertase]
• Aids digestion
• Support a healthy intestinal tract
• Increase absorption of nutrients
• Shakeology contains many ingredients that are beneficial to the digestive system.
• Prebiotics, natural components of certain plants, help support the “friendly” bacteria in your digestive tract.
• Probiotics are strains of live good bacteria that help with the digestive process. They assist the body in absorbing nutrients and minerals, bring an overall balance to the digestive tract, and help support the immune system.
• Digestive enzymes, from sources such as pineapples and papayas, help your body break down food into its individual components, making the nutrients easier to absorb.
Adaptogens
[Maca, Astragalus, Ashwagandha, Maitake Mushroom, Cordyceps, Reishi Mushroom, Schisandra, Ginkgo, Tulsi (Holy Basil)]
• Help promote a strong immune system
• Help increase energy
• Help protect the body from stress
• Help balance endocrine hormones and the immune system
Antioxidants and phytonutrients (plant-sourced ingredients) may help maintain health*
[Cacao, Acerola Cherry, Pomegranate, Camu-Camu, Bilberry, Goji Berry, Blueberry, Acai, Green Tea, Rose Hips, Cinnamon, Luo Han Guo, Moringa, Chlorella, Spirulina, Spinach, Kale]
• Help neutralize harmful free radicals
• Help decrease inflammation
• Help maintain the immune system
• Potentially decrease the risk of degenerative diseases
23 Vitamins and Minerals your body needs to function for optimal health*
• Get a wide range of essential nutrients
• Get your necessary vitamins every day
• Make up for dietary deficiencies

So here’s the question: Are you worth it?

Summer Strong Online Fitness Accountability Group

summer strong pic monkey

Have you done the DREADED winter to summer swap out yet? You know, where you put away all the bulky sweaters and oversized coats in exchange for tanks and shorts. I know the warmer temps and the sunshine are wonderful but does not knowing if last years wardrobe will fit cause you unneeded stress? Imagine, not having to go through the stress of this year after year………

transformation
Although I had the fitness side of things down I needed help and accountability with nutrition. I had started my journey last March, to learn how to eat “right” and I was feeling more energized and happier! I joined a challenge group with my coach and learned the basics of clean eating and how to meal prep.
Sure it was a struggle at first, old habits and routines are hard to break but I wasn’t giving up. I saw these amazing transformation pictures from other people in the support group and all I could think was that if THEY could do it, well then why not me!!!

secret keep going

So I started my journey that would ultimately lead me to change my entire life.

I don’t have a weight loss story to share because I have been into fitness for over 20 years, an avid runner & working out with Beachbody programs since 2009, but what I will share is what I gained through all this. Not only did my body transform and I became a leaner and more muscular version of myself, I have been able to learn to eat again. I no longer skip meals or deprive myself of food that I used to tell myself I hated. I have learned to fuel my body instead of starve my body. I used to be the person who would buy a new Beachbody program & the first thing I would do is throw out the meal plan.  NOT ANYMORE!!!!  Programs like the 21 Day Fix helped me make sure I was eating the right foods and the right portions at each meal. And by incorporating Shakeology, not only does it ensure I’m getting the right nutrients, it has alleviated my migraines and I have been able to significantly reduce my daily migraine medication. I have also incorporated clean eating into my FAMILIES life, helping my husband lose over 40lbs and help reduce my 11 year olds migraines. Not only do I eat clean, I have done just about EVERY Beachbody program available starting with P90X in 2009 and continuing on from there (P90X2, P90X3, Hip Hop Abs, Piyo, Turbofire, Chalean Extreme, Insanity, Insanity Aslyum, 21 Day Fix, 21 Day Fix Extreme, Cize, 22 Minute Hard Corps, Hammer & Chisel, Body Beast.and Focus T25.) Seriously, there are SO MANY to try and I know they have given people all over the world amazing results. So I’m never going to run out of ideas of what to do next!! I have transformed my own life, my husbands life, my mom’s life and now even some of my friends lives!! It’s been an experience that I wouldn’t change for the world.

TJ

My mission is to use my own experience to continue to educate others on how to lead healthy and fulfilling lives. My goal is to teach YOU how to live a balanced life. It’s not about giving up everything that you want, feeling deprived, like you aren’t really living! It’s about picking and choosing what you want most verses what you can take a pass on.

With the summer fast approaching I know that we all want to look and feel our best in our summer clothes. But, BUTTTTTT…. we don’t want to give up ice cream, picnic foods, and fun drinks!! So how do we essentially have our cake and eat it too?

Well that is what I’m going to share!
• I have successfully been able to vacation without gaining weight.

• I have been able to take road trips and not fall off the wagon.

• I have been able to come up with great cleaned up version of our favorite summer treats. (Pizza, Pina Coladas, Margaritas, Ice Cream, Muffins, Buffalo Chicken Dip)

• I have learned how to change my workouts to get the results I want.

• I live the 80-20 rule….I eat clean 80% of the time and 20% I enjoy within reason.
I’m going to teach you how to do all of it!! If you are looking to jump start your fitness results or you want to break a plateau then this is for you!

I’m launching the SUMMER STRONG Accountability & Support Group on the 6th of June! For 60 days we are going to work together & I am going to share sample meal plans, give you recipes, meal ideas, snack ideas, daily accountability, motivation, a workout program that will fit your needs and ability level and well balanced nutrition! You are going to have a community of support to answer your questions 24/7 and the most important thing is that this is MEANT TO BE A LIFESTYLE CHANGE AND NOT A CRASH DIET! This is not something you do for 60 days and go back to your old ways. This is easily a part of who you are!

So, if you are committed and ready to MAKE A CHANGE and you want support along the way then lets do this! I mean honestly… how many times have you signed up for a gym membership, a class, or bought a program and it ends up being money flushed down the drain because you haven’t finished the program or gone to the classes??

Well here is the difference, you have ME to keep you accountable! We will set realistic and achievable goals, we will work together to help you start and finish a program and if you hit roadblocks along the way my job is to help you see through it!!

We are a TEAM and we are in this together!

So it’s time… It’s time for you to get Summer Strong & Healthy!

Fill out the application below to get into this exclusive group!

Workouts officially begin on June 6th!!

• Each person will have a customized fitness program to meet their needs from the Beachbody Library.
• Each person will replace 1 meal a day with Shakeology for the duration of the group. The reason is that when you are changing your habits, it’s so much easier to have 1 meal a day that you don’t have to think about. It’s proper portion control, it’s packed with energy boosting, immune fighting antioxidants that will help to keep you full for 2 1/2 to 3 hours.
• Each person is required to make ME their coach!
• Then you are required to check in daily, rate your day, stay accountable and start and complete the program! Hey you can do anything you put your mind too!

So are you in?! Now is the time!!!!

 

Veggie soup

Springtime Veggie Soup

Ugh, what’s for dinner?  The dreaded question, after coming home from grocery shopping!  With the rain and a definite chill in the air a BIG pot of soup sounded perfect.  As I was putting the new produce away I was also cleaning out old and I had a lot of veggies that needed to be cooked or eaten!

Good life decision on my part. More veggies = happy me. And an ABSOLUTELY delicious minestrone. There’s so much flavor loaded into this pot, I swear your tastebuds will be dancing  with joy.

The great thing about minestrone soup is you can add ANY veggie you want or have available, it’s so adaptable. Out of celery? Throw in some extra carrots. Don’t have spinach? Toss in a few handfuls of kale!

Of course, for the vegetarian you have the option of leaving the chicken out!  Your soup, your choice!

Loaded with tons of spring veggies and packed with a BIG flavor, you won’t believe it only took 30 minutes to make!

INGREDIENTS:  (all organic produce)

  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 2 cups zucchini, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons organic tomato paste
  • 1 can (28 oz) organic diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (15 oz) organic cannellini white kidney beans, drained
  • 8 cups organic vegetable broth
  • Italian seasoning
  • Onion powder
  • 2 cups baby spinach, coarsely chopped
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • Grilled Chicken Breast

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a large pot over medium-high heat, add olive oil, carrots, celery,  zucchini, minced garlic and sprinkle with onion powder.  Saute until just barely tender. Reduce heat to medium and stir in tomato paste, tomatoes, and beans.
  2. Add vegetable broth and Italian seasoning. Bring to a low simmer, stirring occasionally. Stir in spinach, then let soup simmer until veggies are tender, about 7 minutes. Season minestrone with salt and pepper and serve warm.
  3. We added shredded grilled chicken to each individual bowl……..
  4. Topped with a little freshly grated parmesan cheese!!!!

 

child of God

Day 7 – Knowing Your Worth – You Are A Child of God

 

As a child, you don’t always understand why your parents make you do certain things and even though you don’t understand it, there are reasons behind their instructions & warnings. As you mature, you start to understand why certain rules are put into place. You begin to understand that your parents rules were put there because they love you & they care about your safety. Many people don’t understand the value of being a child of God because they don’t realize that God loves them as an individual. We have to realize that the bible isn’t a book rules being forced on us by a religious dictator, but by a loving Father who has provided a way through Jesus for them not to live in destruction.

In order to know what you’re worth, you have to know that your life is not doomed to being some lost soul, floating through life that nobody cares about. You have to know that you are the child of a loving Father. Even when:

1. You don’t feel like you’re getting love from the person you’re investing all of your time in
2. It seems like the person that does claim to love you doesn’t take the time to show it
3. You don’t know what it means to have a loving earthly father
4. You’re tired of waiting for answers when it comes to really big things you’re dealing with right now

In these moments when you feel like there’s no hope for you and that you might as well settle or give up, remember that just like a child of a loving parents begins to grow and see the bigger picture, as a child of God, you will continue to grow in your faith the more you come to know Him as your Father. If you truly want to embrace your worth, come to know God as your Father!

Your-Past-is-just-a-Story1

Day 6 – Knowing Your Worth – Your Past Is Not Your Identity

First let me say how everyday of this challenge is really hitting home with me. I have been defined by my past my entire life. I never looked at myself as a survivor or a warrior, just never good enough! You can read my story here.

My challenge today is to write down what kind of reputation do I think you have amongst the people in your life?

I would say most people probably think I’m a bitch because I stick to myself. That’s not the case though, I am extremely introverted and very unsure of myself. I’m not very talkative (my fear of saying something stupid or something wrong keeps me quiet) or outgoing,and making friends isn’t as easy for me. I spend all of my time with my kids. I know it is good to have friendships and believe me I would love to have a best friend but I am terrified of relationships. People tend to let me down and I have major trust issues. It’s funny because this wasn’t me before my eating disorder, before getting raped, before a suicide attempt and before an abusive marriage…….At 17 my entire life changed and my past has had complete control over my life.

Jesus doesn’t hold my name to things I’ve done. He didn’t abandon me when I sinned against the Father. He didn’t make me wear a scarlet letter. In fact, He wore the shame of my sins for me.

I have to remember that Jesus has set me free from the bondage of my sin. He has cleared my name, and because of this, I can walk confidently in my new identity that is found in Him.

honor God

Day 5 – You Were Bought With A Price

Day 5 – Knowing Your Worth – You Were Bought With A Price

Today was a hard reading for me and although I hate to admit it, one I identify with so well.

You were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. – 1 Corinthians 6:20 (NIV)

God provided the ULTIMATE sacrifice by sending Jesus to die for our sins, we must learn to honor Him with our bodies. What this means is, when our lives were without value, God was gracious enough to add value to ours lives by sending His Son Jesus so that we could be close to God. This sacrifice isn’t anything to be taken for granted, God made this sacrifice because he loves us and we must ALWAYS remember this to be true.

Do you ever feel pressured to dress to impress, or have your hair or make-up a certain way? I know I do ALL the time. This has been a HUGE battle for me since my surgery. None of my clothes fit me since my surgery, I have ran out of most of my make-up and I can’t keep up with my hair like I used to! Because of all of this I HATE leaving the house. I even hate posting workout pictures because I’m always in the same workout gear and my skin and hair look bad. TJ lost his job in September and we just can’t afford to buy these things and I have let this basically run how I’ve lived my life the past 6 months. The way I dress or look, sure it makes me feel good, but I can’t let that become my identiy or dictate how I feel about myself. It doesn’t really matter how other people see me, I need to learn to honor and respect God with my body because that is far more valuable and important to my worth than how others perceive me.

God has given me this one body and it is my job to take care of it. He created me in his image & with a PURPOSE. Even when my schedule is busy and even when I’m not feeling my best, I pray for strength in the Lord to take care of this body he has given me!

This week I will honor God with my body by going back to church and by going to my kids activities again. I will not let the way I look keep holding me back.

0001527_you-are-loved

Day 4 – You Are Love By God

Day 4 of 31 Knowing Your Worth – You Are Loved By God

Love can be a messy thing. It has definitely broken my heart. It is the thing that keeps me up at night, questioning my worth, my security and my faith.

Right now I am in marriage (separated) where I am constantly and continuously being told I love you but I don’t feel like my husband means it. His actions, now and in the past, don’t seem to line up with the whole “I love you” thing. I am constantly asking myself “if you really loved me, then why would you do this or act like that?”

Although romantic love is rewarding it IS NOT my identity. Of course, God honors the union between a man & a wife and uses us to multiply the earth but God’s love demonstrated to us through Jesus Christ is what truly changes our lives & our hearts. It is his love that sought after me when I am at my worst. It is his love that WILL NOT let me down. So at this time in my life when I am being let down once again by human love & my heart is broken I will return to the arms of Jesus and learn what the ultimate “I love you” means. This is where I will find my identity and my worth when it comes to what it means to be loved

Day 3 – You Belong To Jesus

Day 3 of 31 Knowing Your Worth – You Belong To Jesus

It is Christ that makes us alive. When I was doomed to nothingness, He saved me and gave my life meaning. He gave me a sense of belonging that I cannot find in the arms of even a husband that I love dearly. He gave me a security that I will never find by saving money or going to the right college. My worth as a women is in knowing Him. My worth is knowing that I belong to Him and knowing that that what Jesus offers is far more valuable than belonging to anyone or anything else on this earth!

 

worth

Day 2 – You Are Fearfully & Wonderfully Made

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
Psalm 139:14 (NIV)

Your worth is not in the life you’ve made but in The One who made you. Know that God looks at you lovingly and says “look what I made” and that’s what matters, and he doesn’t need human validation for that to be true. Don’t let your life become a pursuit of validation from anyone but the Lord, the One who created you.