Thursday, August 20, 2015


Is it just me, or does everyone else spend WAY too much time looking at blogs and Pinterest trying to find the most delicious, healthy looking meals that aren't a pain in the butt to make?

These are just some of the ones that I've scoured the internet for, or that I got the recipe from a good friend, and I've been seriously loving them lately! I love being able to eat healthy food that doesn't taste like grass! I hope you like these!!

Pineapple Coconut Chicken
[Recipe from Missy Reber]
{Makes about 6 servings, 1/2 c rice & 1/2 c pineapple mixture}
This picture doesn't really make it look too appealing so you'll have to trust me on this one!

-2 large chicken breasts
-1/2 onion, sliced
-1/4 cup (low sodium) teriyaki sauce 
-2 tbsp coconut oil 
-1/2 c unsweetened coconut flakes
-20oz can crushed pineapple

-Quinoa or brown rice.. whichever you prefer or have on hand!

1. Start making brown rice or quinoa, or if you already have some made, SCORE!! My rice cooker usually takes around 25 minutes to finish, and the rest of the meal probably only takes about 10.. So just make sure you know your appliances! (If you have to reheat your rice/quinoa, it'll taste the same!)

2. Season chicken with salt and pepper and bake for about 15-20 minutes (or until it's no longer pink in the middle) at 350*. 

3. In a large pan, steam onions, pineapple, and coconut oil at medium heat.
4. When chicken is done, slice, cube, or shred it (I just shred mine in the kitchen aid!!), and then add it to the pan, along with the teriyaki sauce. 

5. Stir it all up and simmer for 5 minutes. 

6. Add coconut flakes, then serve over brown rice or quinoa. (I also take out the onion slices before eating it, but that's just a personal preference!) 

Chicken Cacciatore
[Recipe from the TurboFire nutrition guide!]
{Makes 6 servings.. about 2 1/2 cups each}

-6 raw chicken breasts, boneless, skinless
-6 cups dry pasta (I used a veggie pasta that I found on sale one day!)(But you can use any whole wheat pasta)
-1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
-1 medium chopped onion (whenever onions are mentioned in recipes, I always half or quarter the amount and put that in instead.. not a huge onion fan!)
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-3 cups low sodium tomato sauce
-1 tsp. Italian seasoning (no salt added)
-3-4 medium zucchini, cut into 1-inch slices

1. Preheat oven to 350*.
2. Place chicken breasts in single layer in a baking pan lightly coated with spray. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink in the middle. Cut into 1-inch cubes; set aside.
3. While chicken is baking, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain; set aside. Keep warm.
4. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.
5. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes, or until soft.
6. Add tomato sauce and Italian seasoning; bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook at a gentle boil for 5-7 minutes.
7. Add chicken and zucchini; cook for 5-7 minutes.
8. Serve chicken-tomato sauce mixture over pasta.

Fruity Green Salad
This probably doesn't need a recipe, but whatever.
-Handful or two of spinach/kale (I buy the pre-bagged baby kale and baby spinach bag from the grocery store)
-2 Tbsp raspberry vinaigrette 
-Shredded carrots

1. Chop up all of your fruits/veggies and throw them in a bowl! Like I said, super simple, but I can't get enough of fruit in a green salad these days, especially when you add in a couple tablespoons of a delicious and healthy(er) dressing! You can also add apples, pomegranate, or any other fruits you can think of! (Probably not bananas though.. that would probably be really weird.)

Turkey Lettuce Wraps
-3 slices of turkey breast, preferably the kind from the deli so that it's fresh without added preservatives.. But I didn't have any on hand, so I just used the pre-packaged stuff. Whatever, it won't kill you.
-1/2 of an avocado. Or a whole, depending on how much you like them!
-2 slices of a tomato
-handful of spinach/kale (I buy the pre-bagged baby kale and baby spinach bag from the grocery store)
-toothpicks (about 3.. maybe more if you have unruly turkey wraps)

1. Cut your tomato slices into strips, as well as your avocado.
2. Place turkey on a cutting board/plate
3. Put spinach/kale down, tomatoes, then avocado. Roll up turkey wraps and stick a toothpick in to keep it rolled up!

Are you getting the "super simple" vibe from all of these meals so far?! This one surprised the heck out of me. It has SO MUCH FLAVOR and I wasn't expecting that because I usually need bread and mayo to feel like it's a good lunch. But no, these were absolutely delicious!!

Mini Turkey Meatloaf Muffins
[original recipe from Skinny Mom.. I adapted it]
{Makes 20 muffins, serving size=2 muffins}

-2 lbs ground turkey
-1 egg
-2 egg whites
-1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
-1/4 of an onion, diced
-1/4 cup green pepper, diced
-1/2 cup carrot, grated
(GO THROUGH YOUR VEGGIE DRAWER AND GRAB ONE OF EVERYTHING! This is where I improvised and added my own veggies!)
-1/4 cup cucumbers, diced
-1/4 cup cauliflower, diced
-1/2 cup spinach/kale, diced
-1/2 cup ketchup
-1 tsp Dijon mustard
-2 tsp minced garlic
-1 Tbsp Worchestershire sauce
-1 tsp onion powder
-1/2 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp pepper
-1/4 cup BBQ sauce
-1 Tbsp honey
-2 tsp Worchestershire sauce
(I actually read the recipe wrong and added these last three ingredients into the meatloaf mixture when I was just supposed to use it as the sauce.. I think it helped make them even more delicious to add them into the meatloafs though!)

-1/4 cup BBQ sauce
-1 Tbsp honey
-2 tsp Worchestershire sauce

1. Preheat oven to 400*. Lightly coat a 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray, set aside.
2. In a large bowl, mix all meatloaf ingredients with your hands. Once mixture is thoroughly combined, fill each muffin tin with 1/4 cup of turkey mixture.
3. In a small bowl, whisk sauce ingredients. Brush onto the tops of each turkey muffin.
4. Cover the pan with a piece of aluminum foil. Cook for 15 minutes.
5. Remove from oven and remove aluminum foil, then cook for another 20 minutes uncovered.

I served mine with green beans and applesauce! Ty ate one as long as it was smothered in apple sauce, but hey.. This kid never eats meat, so I'll take it any way that I can! I also didn't tell Cody what was in them and asked what he thought about the taste, and he said over and over again, "These are amazing!!" When I told him all the veggies that I put in it, he laughed and said, "I can't even taste any of those! It tastes just like normal meatloaf!" 

Also, instead of chopping up every vegetable individually, I used this FANTASTIC mini food processor.. This is the first blender/food processor that I've used that doesn't scare the crap out of Ty and make him start screaming! I think it was a wedding gift, but it is so useful and doesn't take up much space in the kitchen! Plus you can use it to mix frozen juice, use the whisk instead of bringing out the blender, and it comes with a measuring cup!

Healthy Pancakes
-1 cup egg whites (about 6 egg whites)
-1 cup low fat cottage cheese
-1 cup whole grain oats (not instant)
-1 Tbsp cinnamon
-1 tsp raw sugar/stevia
-1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Blend all the ingredients together in a blender, then make just like regular pancakes! I topped mine with light whipped cream and strawberries!

Panko Crusted Fish Sticks
[Recipe from Martha Stewart]
-1 large egg, lightly beaten
-salt and pepper
-two cups Panko (I got mine at walmart!)
-2 Tbsp olive oil
-1 Tbsp Old Bay seasoning (I didn't have it so I just googled the spices that were in it.. I think it was ground mustard, bay leaves, paprika, salt, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, celery salt. I had all of those on hand, so I just sprinkled a little bit of each to make my own 1 Tbsp of Old Bay seasoning)
-1 1/2 pounds tilapia fillets, cut into wide strips (I actually used Cod, and it wasn't fishy tasting at all.. which I loved!!)

1. Preheat oven to 475*. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. Place egg in a wide, shallow bowl and season with salt and pepper. In another bowl, combine panko, old bay seasoning, and oil.
3. Dip fish into egg, shaking off excess, then into panko mixture, pressing to adhere. Place on prepared baking sheet.
4. Bake until lightly browned, about 12-15 minutes.

We really enjoyed these! We actually naughtily bought them thinking they were pre-breaded, but it gave me the chance to find a healthy recipe instead!!

Chocolate Shakeology
I can't NOT mention shakeology, since it's been a daily meal replacement for me for OVER A YEAR NOW!! I can't get enough of it. It satisfies my chocolate cravings (which I get ALL the time now that I'm pregnant!!), keeps me full, and is full of REAL food with over 70 vitamins, minerals, and superfoods!!

-1 scoop chocolate shakeology
-5 ice cubes
-1/2 cup water
-1/4 cup milk

Blend all together and drink the most delicious, healthy chocolate shake you will ever find!!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Thoughts on the 30 Day Plank Challenge

I FINISHED THE 30 DAY PLANK CHALLENGE!! I saw so many improvements in myself that I wasn't expecting, and I learned a few things about myself too.

First of all, if you're going to embark on a 30 day fitness challenge, you have to be IN IT. And you're going to WANT to be in it, because your body will transform in ways that will surprise you! For me, I was expecting to be able to get better at holding the plank. And maybe a little bit stronger of a core, whatever that meant. OH MAN, was I surprised when I noticed that my upper back, mid back, lower back, shoulders, deltoids, thighs, obliques, front of my ankles, calves, and triceps (and probably more) were sore, and then STRONG!!

I also learned, yet again, that my mind is a powerful tool for influencing my decisions and actions!! I had to believe that I could do it, every single day. I had to believe that I could get stronger and hold the plank for longer amounts of time. I had to keep saying good things about myself and not tear myself down!! Remember the stupid phrase, "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me!"? Well that's a bunch of crap!!

How many of us complain about something on our bodies, something we don't like about our personality? Our minds REMEMBER SO MUCH!! Especially the negative things! But it CAN be changed!! Start giving yourself one compliment a day, reading personal development books, and just believing in yourself!! You are amazing, you are beautiful, YOU CAN DO INCREDIBLE THINGS!!

I saw this amazing quote that I think everyone could benefit from seeing, and it goes along with thinking positively about yourself. A lot of us think that we need to shed a few pounds, or maybe more than a few, but we take it too far and start letting our weight hold us back and affect our moods.. but remember this quote next time you're feeling that way!! Instead of saying you're fat and need to lose weight, say that you are beautiful and you're setting a goal to eat healthier 2 times a day, or exercise one more time a week!

Have I emphasized how important positive thinking is?! Okay, good. I'll move on.

When I decided to start doing the 30 day plank challenge, I found this picture on Pinterest and thought it looked like a good schedule to follow.
I followed it for the first two weeks. but then it got very difficult to keep up with the huge time jumps. I ended up learning that my body reacts a lot better when I increase the time by the smallest amounts, not 30 seconds a day. It was also a mental challenge, because I'd start getting tired less than halfway through the scheduled time and knowing how much time I still had to go made me mentally check out and feel like I was incapable of finishing. If I knew that before starting, my schedule would probably look like this (click to enlarge):

I also learned that my body needed a small break. I was getting to the point where I could barely hold a plank for 30 seconds without feeling like I was breaking in half. So for a couple of days, I did smaller time increments, then took a rest day, and the next day I held the plank for 1 minute and 25 seconds!!

Overall, it was TOTALLY worth it! I would recommend this to EVERYONE I know, you will not regret it!!

I had a couple people ask if I had seen any difference in my stomach, and I have to start by saying that I haven't been the best with my foods this past month, and I know very well that "abs are made in the kitchen". So I've stayed the same weight and didn't think I'd see much of a difference in my body, but then I took an "after" picture of my stomach and compared it to the picture I took a month before, and here's what I saw!

Not the biggest visual change, but there is some serious muscle underneath the flab that's still on my stomach! Anyways, thanks for reading my thoughts, and I hope this inspires you to do the plank challenge for yourself!!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Some of my favorite meals!

One thing that I didn't mention in my last post (that gave easy tips for those who are starting/wanting to eat healthy) was how important it is to make sure you're getting enough calories in for the day. Sure, you have a list of healthy meals ready to go, but just because they're healthy doesn't mean it'll be enough for you!! I have had this problem so many times and all day I'm feeling extra hungry, but I followed my meal plan, so I don't think much of it. That is, until I put everything I ate into My Fitness Pal and I realize that I should have eaten at least 300 more calories.. Whoops!!

One thing that I've found really helpful is to have your list of meals in front of you and put them into My Fitness Pal before your day begins.. you can even do it for the whole week if you want, and then just edit the days if anything changes! That way you can see how much more or less you should be eating so that you can feel satisfied throughout the whole day. There's nothing worse (okay, yes there is) than thinking that you have to be starving all day if you're eating healthy. NO WAY is that correct! Eat the right amount of calories from healthy food, and you will be happy, healthy, AND full!

A good way to keep track of how much you're eating is to invest in a food scale! I have a little cheap-o one from like walmart, but it works! You can measure everything you eat just by putting it on a scale rather than trying to figure out how much one cup of chicken is (especially if it's a chicken breast.. no need to stuff the chicken into a measuring cup!!)((Although, let's be honest.. that would be really funny to see!))

Here's the link to my Pinterest board of healthy foods, and hopefully I'll be able to test some of those out soon and let you know what I think!!

As far as tried and true recipes, here are my favorites so far!!

Chicken, brown rice, steamed veggies!

Chicken Breasts
Frozen vegetables
Brown rice + water + rice cooker
Italian seasoning

FOR THE RICE: I like to make my rice ahead of time in my rice cooker, put it in the fridge, and then heat it up whenever I need it. If you have a rice cooker, add 1 cup of brown rice and up to line 2 of water. Press "Start" and serve when the switch turns from "Start" to "Warm". If you don't have a rice cooker, you're out of luck. KIDDING! I've just never made rice on the stove before, but here's a tutorial for you!

FOR THE CHICKEN: Preheat your oven to 350*. Grab a cookie pan (or any pan with taller sides), spray it with pam, place chicken on the pan and season with Italian seasoning. Put in the oven for 20 minutes, or until it's no longer pink. I just made this last night, but I added parmesan cheese before baking it.. YUM!! The options are endless! Try to find seasonings with low or no sodium!

FOR THE VEGGIES: My rice cooker also steams foods, so it's another super easy thing for me to do. If you have one similar to this, add a cup of water to the bottom portion, place the steamer tray on top, add frozen veggies, and cook for 20 minutes. (SCORE! Veggies and chicken cook for the same time! Here's how you can steam veggies without a steamer.

Sweet Potato Fries
(I feel the need to say that this is not a complete meal. This is just a side dish!)

Peeled and cut sweet potatoes
Coconut Oil

These seriously couldn't be easier to make! Preheat oven to 400*. Peel your sweet potato and cut it into "fries" (I have the hardest time cutting sweet potatoes.. is it just me?!). Heat up a couple of tablespoons of coconut oil in the microwave and then toss your fries in it, place them on the pan, and cook them for about 20 minutes. Serve them with ketchup! I'M IN LOVE WITH THESE! Honestly, I can't get enough. I might just need to buy sweet potatoes by the truck load.

Peach Cobbler Oatmeal

This is Crystal's recipe! She makes other variations as well, but this is the only one I've tried so far! (Crystal is my coach, and is the one that inspired me to make a change in my life! She is absolutely amazing, and one of the sweetest people ever!)

1/2 cup of cooked oats
dash of almond milk
(mine is homemade in this picture, hence the waterbottle)
small dash of vanilla extract
dash of cinnamon
half a packet of milled flax seed
5 crushed almonds (or about 3/4 tbsp) (not pictured)

Mix it all together and enjoy a healthy, filling, delicious breakfast!

Chocolate Shakeology

Chocolate Shakeology
4-5 ice cubes
1-2 cups of milk (cow, soy, almond, etc.)

I'm not going to lie, this might be my favorite meal every day. I'm all about easy meals, and this couldn't be easier. I mix one scoop with 4 or 5 ice cubes, and about a cup or a little more or milk. Put in a blender and mix until smooth! (Almond milk or other healthier milks are obviously healthier than regular milk, but if you only have regular cow milk, that's totally fine too!)

I actually bought a little shaker cup because cleaning my blender everyday was getting annoying. So now, I put about 8oz milk in the cup, 4oz water, one scoop of shakeology, and mix it all up! It's not as good as when I blend it, but it's the perfect lazy solution!

Also, if you blend it with half a banana, it tastes like banana bread with chocolate chips in it. HOLY DELICIOUS!!

Philly Cheesesteak Sloppy Joe
This is not my picture or my recipe. Here is the website where you can find the recipe!

I made a few changes to her recipe, but I made them simply because this was a last minute dinner, and I didn't have all of the ingredients. 

I didn't add an onion.
Instead of a green bell pepper, I used a yellow one.
I used mozzerella cheese instead of provolone.

This was amazingly delicious!! I had it for left overs a couple more times, and I was in love every time!! SOO so good!

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole
I didn't take a picture of this when it was in the pan, so here's one serving of it!!

This stuff was amazing and super easy to make! Find the recipe here!!

Cottage Cheese and Fruit
This is such a quick and delicious breakfast or snack!! My favorite fruits to pair cottage cheese with are peaches and pears. Probably pears, but those are my favorite fruit ever! Add a piece of whole grain toast and you're good to go!

Sweet Potato Pizza Crust
Again, I didn't take a picture of just the crust.. but here's what our pizza looked like right out of the oven!
The cool thing was that it didn't taste like sweet potatoes! I wouldn't have minded if it did, but you're able to put whatever toppings you want on the pizza without having to worry about competing flavors! The recipe (which you can find here) calls for almond flour to make it gluten free and probably a little healthier, but I have a 5 gallon bucket of flour, so I couldn't justify buying the almond flour. It's definitely a healthier option than ordering from Dominos though!!

One thing I would suggest is to spread it out pretty thin on your pizza stone because this one rose quite a bit in the oven. It was pretty thick to begin with, so it just got even bigger and the pizza was very bready.

Easy Breakfast Casserole
You'd think I would have learned to start taking pictures of my food when I make it so I don't have to use other people's.. but I didn't. This is obviously from the blog Four Fit Sisters and you can find the recipe in video form here.
This is a great thing to make on Sunday night and then just cut it up and put it in individual containers for breakfast everyday the next week!! I LOVE it!! I've been having it for the past few days and it's so nice to have it pre-made and HEALTHY!!!

Anyways, this seems pretty long. Although when it comes to finding good recipes, I feel like I can never get enough!! I'm going to be trying some more new recipes this week, like these turkey meatballs with roasted zucchini, these sweet potato, apple, and cinnamon pancakes, lemon raspberry pancakes, and make ahead baked pancakes. (I just really like breakfast foods, I guess!)

I'll write another "Favorite meals" blog post when I gather a few more delicious recipes, but here's a good jump start for you! As always, try to stay within your suggested caloric intake number, and strive to eat healthier than you did yesterday! Pair it with a good workout, and you'll feel even better!

As always, let me know if you ever have any questions, and I'll do the best I can to answer them!!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Beginners guide to eating healthy

When I decided to buy Focus T25 and Shakeology, I knew that I would also have to start eating healthier to see any results. That freaked me out! I have tried to eat healthy before, and when I can't find anything fast and easy or healthy at all, I would start skipping meals, become starving, and then eat anything that I could find. 

In hopes to help you out and get you started on your eating healthy goal, I thought I'd give you some helpful tips that I've learned these past 4 months!

  • Start off by finding some good recipes! Here is my healthy food board on Pinterest that focuses on main dishes, and I have a few other healthy food boards as well! Pinterest is a wonderful website for you to find pretty much anything, so type in "Healthy meals" or something, and you'll find a ton of results!! 
  • Once you've found some good recipes (don't skimp out on this part and think you'll be able to find something later.. Do your research NOW! Unless you're hungry.. if that's the case, eat something, then come back and do your research.), MAKE YOUR MEAL PLAN! It's better to eat 5-6 smaller meals a day rather than 3 large ones. Download a meal planner, or make your own! I use a calendar white board from Walmart and each column is one day. So I have Breakfast, Snack, Lunch, Snack, Dinner. Some people add an extra snack after dinner, but I've found that most days I don't need one.. and I don't have room on this calendar! If I ever do need an after dinner snack, scrambled egg whites are my fall back!

If you have your meal plan somewhere that you can easily see it, you will be more likely to plan ahead if you need to and not have to wonder what you can eat!
  • That's the next tip.. plan ahead!! Do all of your grocery shopping for the week!! It's going to be hard to make crock pot orange chicken for dinner if you don't have oranges or chicken! I decided to make a three bean salad that has green beans, kidney beans, white beans, vinegar, and olive oil for some snacks this week. I mixed it all together and put it in the fridge. Now I know that I can just get 1/2 cup of it when it's snack time! (I would have put it into individual tupperware containers, but I don't have enough for that.) If I didn't already have that prepped, by the time I was hungry, I probably wouldn't want to make it. But if it's easy to grab and it's healthy, you're all set!! A lot of people make a handful of their meals on one day and put them in individual containers for the week... this is really helpful if you're out of the house for most of the day!
  • When grocery shopping, buy more fruits and veggies than processed food (try not to buy processed food at all). If it's pre-packaged, it's most likely going to be way more unhealthy than a few apples. Make the produce section your best friend!

  • Now that you have a bunch of food ready, GET RID OF THE JUNK FOOD!! If you're like me, then you're going to need to eat the junk food in your house if it's there.. I just can't help it! Donate it to a friend, or just help everyone out and throw it away. You don't need any temptations!!!
  • Don't skip any meals!! You should be eating within an hour of waking up, and then every meal should be 2-3 hours after your last meal. When you skip meals, your metabolism slows down thinking that you're starving, so instead of burning the food you eat, it stores it into fat. NO GOOD! 

  • When you're first starting out, there might be a few meals that just never end up sounding good to you.. This is another circumstance where planning your meals a week out helps! If Tuesday's dinner doesn't sound good, and you've already bought all the ingredients for the super yummy dinner you had planned for Thursday, make Thursday's dinner instead!! I do this all the time, because my taste buds are quite spontaneous.
  • Always have a water bottle with you!! In one of my challenge groups, I won a camelbak water bottle that holds like 26 ounces, and it is always by me! It's a lot easier to make sure you get your water in if you have a cute water bottle that holds more than the typical "16oz" disposable water bottles. ALSO, cut out all your other beverages!! No more soda, coffee, juice, just water!! You might feel like you need the other drinks, but cut them out for two weeks and you'll see that water is really what you need!

  • If you have a smart phone, download the "My Fitness Pal" app. It allows you to search for foods, scan the barcode of your store-bought foods, or put in the nutritional information on your own. You can put in everything you ate and drank for the day, as well as how much water you drank! At the end of the day, you can hit "complete entry" and it tells you how much you would weigh in 5 weeks if you kept eating/drinking/exercising like you did that day!! It's also really nice to stay accountable, and if you're going to be documenting what you eat, you're more likely to skip those five candy bars in your cupboard! (Although if you threw the junk food away, you won't have this problem!)
  • There are so many other things I could say, but one last thing is how to reward yourself. We are in the type of society where we feel the need to celebrate with food. You got awesome grades? Let's go out to a fancy dinner! It's your 3 month anniversary? Get donuts!!

    WRONG!! Skip the food and reward yourself in other ways!! When I completed working out for a month straight, I bought myself some new clothes! You can get a pedicure, buy new shoes, get your hair done, buy that special face mask that you've been wanting to try. Get your mind out of the habit of thinking that food is the best way to treat yourself. 

You can do this!! You will feel better when you eat better, I promise!! If you need any help or motivation, feel free to email me (, text me, leave a comment, anything!! I want you to feel healthier!! If you missed my transformation post, check it out here!

Also, make sure to come back next week for a few of my favorite meals!!

My Fitness Story + Before and Afters!!

Growing up and all through high school/college, I never really thought of myself as overweight. I was never "skinny" or what I wanted to look like, but I wasn't upset with my weight or body type. I was generally between 135-140 pounds. I never worked at it, and I never had good eating habits, but I guess all the dance parties and random outings with friends had me more active and kept me within that weight range. When I got married at the beginning of 2012, it seemed like it was overnight that I gained a few pounds, and then a few more pounds. And then all of a sudden I was 169 pounds. Um, what?! I was super self conscious, hated the way I looked, the way clothes fit me, and my energy levels were dirt!! But did I care enough to do anything about it then? NOPE! I was just super complainy.. (not a word, I know.) POOR ME! I'M SO CHUBBY!!

Then I got pregnant, and for most people, that's when they decide to start eating healthier.. Yanno, for the baby! That wasn't the case for me! I figured I'd been living just fine eating the way I did, and I wasn't about to give up all of my candy and junk food! NO WAY!

But then I had Ty. And when we finally got to bring him home, of course I was tired, I just had a baby! He was eating every two hours! I wanted to stare at him every second! But I was sleeping until 1:00 in the afternoon, taking naps all the time, and just never had the energy to do hardly anything.

I was at a family gathering and watched my sister-in-law's daughter reach for vegetables that were on the table before she reached for the candy right next to it. WHAT?! I didn't even reach for veggies.. EVER!! I thought about Ty growing up and how I wished, more than anything, that he would be a healthier eater than I was, and maybe even enjoy eating vegetables. And that's when it hit me. He's not ever going to learn to love them if they aren't even in the house! I was the one that was going to have to be his example. It all had to start with me.

I tried looking around at different weight loss programs, but I knew I wanted to do something that would help me change my habits instead of going on a "diet". I needed this to be a lifestyle change. Everything that I saw was either super expensive, looked stupid, or I knew it wasn't going to stick with me.

So I decided to look on Pinterest for easy at-home workouts and I thought that I might consider doing. In the middle of June, I was browsing Facebook and came across a post that mentioned this girl who had a workout page where she posted healthy recipes and a few short videos of her working out. I checked out her page and thought to myself, "If I ever get motivated enough to workout at home, these workouts seem like a good start!" I 'liked' her page, and then she messaged me asking about my fitness goals and wanted to get to know me! So we started talking back and forth, I told her that I just had a baby and I wanted to get back in shape, and she told me about a fitness challenge group that she was going to be doing the next month, and after telling her that I suck at eating healthy, she invited me to a "Clean Eating" group that she held every month. I happily accepted, and learned that eating healthy doesn't have to be hard!

I ended up really liking the accountability of having a group on Facebook where I had to say what I ate everyday. There was no way that I was going to let everyone know that I had sugar cereal for breakfast, chips as a snack, pb&j for lunch, and so on. I also got a lot of food inspiration from the other people posting everyday!! It was awesome. So then I asked about her challenge group that she was doing. She told me that I'd need to buy a fitness program, Shakeology, and I'd have one-on-one help from her, be in an accountability group on facebook where I'd need to post everyday, and I would have access to Beachbody's Online Gym!

I was super excited because that seemed perfect for me! If I'm not accountable to someone, I will never finish anything. And even sometimes if I am accountable, I still don't finish. I'm kind of well known (by myself) as the girl who never finishes anything!!  But I decided to give this a try, and I wanted it badly enough that I WAS GOING TO MAKE IT, DANG IT! I started looking around the Beachbody website, looked at the products, and I was kind of reserved on the price, but I knew I still wanted to do it. It looked amazing! I read a ton of success stories and saw a lot of "before and after" pictures, and I was ready!

I went ahead and bought a challenge pack, which came with a 30 serving bag of Shakeology and my workout program; I chose Focus T25. It said it was only going to be 25 minutes a day, and with a two month old, time was not on my side!

One of the coolest things for me was being in the facebook group. My coach had written up a bunch of her favorite healthy recipes and that was the best starting point to eating healthy, along with the sample meal plans that came with Focus T25. It helped me realize that eating healthy wasn't hard, it just took preparation.

I was told to take pictures of my body to have as my "before" pictures. For someone like me that never finishes anything, I was skeptical about the whole thing, STILL, and was worried that I was going to take these INSANELY embarrassing pictures and still look the same a month or two later. BUT, I'm so glad I took them. NEVER skip the before pictures!!!

So I started working out, eating healthier, and drinking Shakeology in place of one meal a day. Because of my serious addiction to sugar, I made the commitment to give up all treats for the first month, which might not be your preferred method to do things, but I HAD to give it all up to start with. And I lost 7 pounds in the first week!! It was probably just water weight, but freak, it was 7 POUNDS! If that doesn't motivate you to keep going, I don't know what will! So I kept going, working out, drinking Shakeology (which curbed a lot of my cravings!), and I just kept seeing the pounds disappear from the scale! One month went by and I was down 10 pounds! And then after two months, with almost consistent healthy eating, drinking Shakeology, and working out everyday, my weight was 151!!! I had lost 18 pounds, I felt A MILLION times more energized, I was so much happier and friendly to my husband, and I wasn't nearly as embarrassed about what my body looked like!

As far as Focus T25 is concerned, I FREAKING LOVED THESE WORK OUTS!! In fact, I'm doing them all over again, and they are still challenging to me! I get bored really easily with workouts, which is why I never stuck with Pinterest workouts or other ones that I found on youtube.. I needed something new everyday, and I also REALLY needed a schedule to follow EVERY DAY. When you buy the workout program, it comes with a rather large calendar with the designated workouts for each day and then little boxes for you to rate how you did during the workout whether you "nailed it" or "barely made it"! I loved filling in each box everyday, and I'll be honest, almost every day was "barely made it" haha. I'm sure this applies to every other type of workout, but I love that I could customize the level of workout I was getting! In the beginning, I was really overweight and couldn't jump a lot, so I followed the modifier and sometimes even went a step lower, but I was still getting a great workout! These workouts really are great for every body in any physical shape!!

Honestly, Beachbody helped me get my life back. I workout every morning and still have LOADS of energy to play with Ty all day long! Sure, I still get tired (because I go to bed around 12..) but I'm no where close to how tired I was when I ate like crap, never exercised, and got enough sleep.

It has now been 3 1/2 months since I started this whole journey, and I am down 23 pounds and have lost 17 inches from my body!! I mentioned on instagram the other day that I finally enjoy the process of going shopping and seeing how clothes actually FIT and look cute, for the first time in at least 2 years!!

I learned two very important things through this process:

1. No one can make you workout or get back into shape. You have to be ready to change and make that decision on your own. 

2. You can't out exercise a bad diet. Seeing weight loss comes from  70-80% eating healthy and 20-30% exercising. So don't think that you can see results with working out everyday and eating mac & cheese, chips, candy, and pizza everyday. (Although a few cheats here and there won't hurt! Key words being "here and there".)

I hope this gives someone the confidence and courage to make a change in their life. If you have any questions about Beachbody, their workout programs, Shakeology, or anything else, I'd be more than happy to answer them for you!! You can email me at . If you want to look for yourself, check out their website! Please know that I'm not at the fitness level that I want to be at, but I am still working toward my goal!! Want to join me? What's there to lose? (Besides inches and pounds, of course!!)