If you're like me, you really enjoy sweets, and you'll love this recipe!
The key to enjoying sweets without undermining your "feel good" or weight loss efforts is by eating sweets that also include fiber, protein, and other nutrients that ultimately tame your cravings for MORE sweets and enhance your efforts to feel your best!
Sweets have a bad rap because the most popular choices include candy, cookies, chocolate bars, icecream, cakes, and other highly processed desserts. Along with being loaded with sugar and fat, these options are cheap, easy, and convenient. That's why most people get hooked on them!
But what if a better, healthier choice was available for you the next time your body craved something on the sweet scale?
By baking healthy sweet treats you make that possible! Instead of denying yourself of what your body craves (OR give in to eating something loaded with empty calories) you can choose instead to indulge in a delicious, healthy, nutrient dense treat.
I have many healthy sweet treats to share with you, but this week I'm sharing my current obsession:
Chunky Apple Blueberry Muffins that will satisfy your sweet tooth and also fuel your body with energy!
I combine oats, chunky applesauce, blueberries, flaxseed, almond milk, and a little coconut sugar for a healthy, protein & fiber filled muffin that you can enjoy as a snack, a part of breakfast, or an after lunch or dinner dessert. Eat warm or cold! I don't know how long they last because this recipe makes 12, and they are gone within 3 days! :)
Enjoy with a cup of tea or almond milk!
Below are my top 4 "go to" simple healthy meals. They also easily convert into lunch the next day.
No bells or whistles - just simple and nutrient filled dinners to make sure that you and your family are happy, healthy campers!
Monday: BBQ Pulled chicken sandwiches, served with a side salad
BBQ chicken: Put 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast in crockpot. Cover with 1 cup of BBQ sauce. Cook on low approximately 5 hours.
Rolls: Arnold’s Sandwich Thin rolls (Toasted!), or whole grain/healthy roll of choice.
Create Sandwich: 1 toasted roll with approximately 2/3 cup pulled chicken. (chicken will easily shred). Additional toppings: tomato slices, avocado slices
Salad: Natures Promise Organic Spring Mix, slice cucumbers, tomato, red peppers, carrots. Dressing: lightly coat with olive oil & vinegar, or low cal dressing of choice.
Lower the cals: Use only 1/2 roll, or omit roll completely. Serve BBQ pulled chicken over salad.
Tuesday: Turkey Tacos, served with a side salad
Turkey meat: Coat frying pan in a little olive oil. Sautee 1 large onion, and 2 small garlic cloves until golden. Mix in 2lbs lean turkey chop meat. Cook through approximately 10 minutes. Add 28oz can tomato sauce. Keep flame going until turkey is completely cooked through. If you like spicy, add a few green chiles, or sprinkle chilli powder and/or paprika to desired liking.
Tortillas: (Aim for one that is around 100-120 calories). Stop & Shop Whole Wheat Flour (option), OR Lavish bread (I like it toasted!)
Create Taco: 2/3 cup meat, 1 tortilla.
Additional toppings: Salsa, avocado slices, diced tomatoes, black beans, low fat sour cream
Salad: same as before
Lower the cals: Use only 1/2 tortilla, or omit tortilla completely. Serve taco meat over salad.
Wednesday: Baked Chicken Pasta, serve with roasted veggies
Chicken: Cube 2 lbs chicken breast. Coat frying pan in a little olive oil. Sautee 1 large onion, and 2 small garlic cloves until golden. Mix in chicken breast until cooked through. Add 28oz can diced tomato.
Pasta: Cook approximately 4-5 cups brown rice or whole grain pasta. Drain. COMBINE Pasta and Chicken mix. Pour into baking dish. Sprinkle with a dusting of breadcrumbs and part skim mozz cheese (optional). Baked 350 for 20-30 minutes.
Roasted Veggies: Pour frozen or fresh veggie mixture (Broccoli, Cauliflower, carrots,ect) in baking dish. Lightly coat with olive oil. Sprinkle with a sea salt, pepper, garlic power. Baked 350 for about 45 minutes- 1 hour or longer depending on crispiness preference.
Lower the cals: Enjoy small portion of chicken/pasta over a nice big portion of the veggies!
Thursday: Turkey Burgers and Salad
Turkey Meat Burger: Mix 2 lbs lean ground turkey, mix with 1/4 cup bread crumbs (or panko), 1 chopped onion, 2 lightly beaten egg whites, add salt & pepper. Form into patties. Cook on grill or frying pan optional (coat pan in a little bit of olive oil).
Rolls: Arnold Sandwich Thin Rolls (toasted), or whole grain/healthy bun of choice!
Create burger: Additional toppings: Lettuce, tomato slices, avocado slices, a little bit of ketchup or BBQ sauce.
Salad: same as above.
Low cal option: Use only 1/2 roll, or omit roll completely. Serve burger over salad.
Exercise and eating well should be apart of your lifestyle, but I'll be the first to admit that exciting events (and outfits!) spark a certain flame of determination to look and feel your best.
Whether you have a wedding, prom, or the approaching Summer season to incite your fitness fire, below is an awesome full body circuit that you can do at home or at the gym.
This workout does require free weights. If you're just starting off, try 3-5lbs. If that is too light, try 7.5lbs.
If your really strong and have experience with strength training, go for 10lb- 15lbs.
Below is a video for you to follow along with Amanda.
Underneath is PDF file of all the moves (print it out, and use it as guide).
Start with a 5-10 minute cardio warm up. Options (10 minutes on treadmill, ellipitical OR one of my 10 Minute Quickies.
Do Amanda's Prom Workout! Repeat the circuit 2-3 more times.
Stretch/Cool down after.
As always, do your best!
Does it feel like you are barely making progress in your efforts to lose weight, get fit, or simply feel better?
There is something you can blame if you're feeling stuck, not seeing results, or peddling backwards.
YOUR HABITS. This includes your obvious habits, along with the much less obvious habits that your big habits are made up of. You may find the root of why you are stuck once you acknowledge the less obvious habits.
Here is the main challenge: discovering exactly what they are.
What habits are contributing to your efforts to to feel better, happy and healthier?
What habits are holding you back or causing you to peddle backwards?
These realizations must be observed over time. Give yourself a week, or two, or even more.
Observe yourself without judgement,
with wide open and brutally honest eyes,
from a place of love and curiosity.
Once you uncover what your habits are, you can then determine whether or not they are serving you.
Here are a few things to consider as you observe your habits this week:
The next step will be figuring out the ways to create and/or incorporate more of the habits that serve you, and eliminate the ones that don’t.
Brutal honesty with yourself will be the toughest part. Trust me on that! This exercise won't work if you're not ready to take off your blinders.
Habits are so incredibly powerful because they become second nature. They make up your lifestyle.
They are the things you do and the thoughts you think without even realizing it or second guessing it.
Like asking for the dressing on the side, and using only a little bit,
or ordering a side salad instead of french fries,
or taking the stairs instead of the elevator,
or making the time to pack a healthy lunch,
or working out as soon as you wake up.
Because that one cupcake you ate at the birthday party, or the one workout you had to miss because of a Doctors appointment is not the reason you gained weight.
It's your habits. It's the accumulation of all the little things and daily rituals that you think and do over and over again over a long stretch of time.
Your habits are little tiny steps that ultimately lead to your giant leaps!
The good news is that you can change habits that don't serve you. Of course, this requires hard work and continuous conscious effort. But when you do it over and over again, the effort transforms into a habit. This is when it becomes golden! You no longer have to think about it. You just DO it.