Apr 4, 2018

Clean-Eating Cucumber & Tomato Salad

I’m a firm believer that side dishes should be kept simple. Well, anything that I make is pretty simple! I like my main dish to be the star of the show, and who wants to make dinner any more complicated? Not this momma of four! 
So, when I was contemplating a side for my burger last week, I knew I wanted something simple and fresh. This healthy Tomato Cucumber Salad was a perfect match. The light and bright flavors of fresh tomato and cucumber perfectly contrast the deeper flavors of a burger, steak, chicken...pretty much anything!  As we get closer to summer, I know I'll have fresh cucumbers and tomatoes from my garden to use! 
I love showcasing very “basic” recipes like this for the new cooks in my audience. Why are simple recipes like this great? Because they’re SO easy to build on! The salad presented below is bare bones and, while delicious as is, can be taken to the next level with any number of add-ins. Give it a Greek flare with some feta, olives, or even toasted pieces of pita bread to soak up that delicious dressing. If you’re feeling adventurous, try adding some cubed watermelon for a nice sweet-salty contrast. Got fresh herbs? Toss them in there. And of course, you can customize the dressing by using different vinegars or lemon juice, infused oils, or by adding fresh garlic. Learning a basic recipe like this is the first step towards getting creative in the kitchen and adding minor changes to a great recipe to give it a different flare, depending on what mood you're in!


Mar 28, 2018

Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

This recipe is so simple and healthy, and with the right kitchen tools, can be literally made in minutes! It's the perfect side dish to nearly any meal, is low-carb and low-calorie, and there are lots of fun variations you can use to change it up so that you don't ever get bored with it!



As a busy mom of 4, I don't spend a ton of time in the kitchen, but that doesn't mean we resort to eating pre-packaged/prepared convenience foods! It just means that over the years, I've gotten smart as to what "gadgets" to have in my kitchen to make food prep a breeze! This Pampered Chef Micro-Cooker for one, is a kitchen essential! Steamed food is not only super yummy, but more nutritious because you're not cooking the nutrients out of your veggies in the water, as with boiling. Plus it's easy to clean, and with the veggie setting on my microwave, it literally takes minutes! 

I use it for potatoes (peel, chop, cook, mash - done!), squash, and pretty much any and every fresh produce, with only a few exceptions (asparagus being one of them - I prefer those roasted :). 

The other kitchen appliance I use every single day is my NutriBullet 900 series. I've had it for over 4 years, and it still works the same as it did on day one. I use it for my health shakes and smoothies, soups, sauces, and recipes like this one! 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/3 head cauliflower (depending on how many servings you're wanting)
  • 1 tsp. Coconut oil
  • 1 clove garlic, mashed and sautéed
  • Sea Salt to taste
  • Pepper, Dill Weed (optiona)l, to taste
  • Other optional ingredients: roasted sweet peppers, sun dried tomatoes, sautéed onions, etc.

DIRECTIONS:



  1. Clean cauliflower, break into sections and steam in the microwave in your Micro-Cooker.
  2. Meanwhile, sauté garlic and other veggies in EVOO if using. 
  3. Transfer the cauliflower to a food processor (I love my NutriBullet) along with garlic, seasonings and coconut oil. Puree until smooth and creamy. Stir in any remaining optional veggies. Enjoy! 

Feb 16, 2018

80 Day Obession Meal Plan C

Sometimes no matter how much we plan and prepare, we don't get it right the first time, and we need to take a step back to revisit the plan. That's what happened to me as I started Phase 2 of the newest Beachbody workout program, 80 Day Obsession. I started out thinking I should be in Plan A for my nutrition, but I was feeling super hungry all the time, tired, irritable, and I just felt overall like my body wasn't getting enough nutrition. My results were showing little to no progress in terms of weight loss, so I went back to the start and recalculated my intake. 

Meal #3:Tilapia, Brussels Sprouts/Broccoli, Whole Grains

For the first time ever, I am finding myself veering away from Bracket A, and heading into unknown territory with Plan C. I'm going to stick it out for the duration of the 50-some remaining days of the program to see what my results will yield! A few days in, and I can tell you I already feel like a different person. For the first time EVER, in a meal plan I am eating 4 servings of carbs per day! Talk about feeling SPOILED! Ha!! 

On a side-note, these containers make meal prep a complete breeze! They are dishwasher safe, microwave safe, and stack up so nicely in my fridge! Click HERE to check them out! I first ordered myself a set of 7 (for dinners, one per day for every day of the week), then later decided to order a second set so I now have enough to use for my lunches AND dinners for an entire week. 

So as I begin Phase 2, on meal plan C, here is what I'm eating in case you want to follow along! 


And if you are interested in joining me with a community of other ladies all working towards our health and fitness goals, I am currently taking enrollments for my next virtual support and accountability group that starts on Monday, February 19th!  Don't wait, the spots are filling up fast! Apply here for more information!

Feb 2, 2018

80 Day Obsession Resistance Loops

You might or might not have heard about Beachbody's newest in-home fitness program, 80 Day Obsession. Today I'm on day 19, and just like trainer Autumn Calabrese said, I've already torn through my first set of resistance loops! 

As the replacement loops are not yet available in the product catalog, I resorted to finding a set that will work for these workouts. 


In case you are in the same position as myself and need replacement loops stat, I wanted to share with you what I am using so that you have the equipment you need to keep going with your workouts and keep working towards your fitness goals! This Belus set of 4 loop bands comes in 2 different color options, and have varying options for resistance, from light to extra heavy. 

And if you are interested in joining me with a community of other ladies, I am currently taking enrollments for my next virtual support and accountability group that starts on Monday, February 5th! Apply here for more information!




I have been planning and preparing for weeks for the start of the brand new in-home workout program, 80 Day Obsession created by Super Trainer Autumn Calabrese! If you are familiar with her other previous fitness programs, 21 Day Fix, 21 Day Fix Extreme, The Master's Hammer and Chisel, you might also be just as excited as I am! 

If you are someone who already works out regularly and you are looking for a new challenge, this program is going to be right up your alley! As Autumn says, it will challenge you to change you, it will force you outside of your comfort zone, and when you combine the 80 DIFFERENT workout routines with Timed Nutrition, you will really amp up your results! 

I have been working with my customers and coaching team to prepare for this program, both with following A Little Obsessed workouts, and getting a clear understanding about what Timed Nutrition entails!

The program in it's entirety is actually 97 days long total, consisting of 80 workouts, and 17 rest days. I really love that she planned the rest days on Sundays! 

The nutrition portion is spelled out exactly for you, based on your unique and individual goals (weight loss, maintenance, build muscle or weight gain). The plan tells you what containers (aka food groups) to eat at what times, and how much of each to use, along with the specific foods to eat for each food group. It seriously cannot get ANY easier than this! All we need to do is FOLLOW THE PLAN! Sounds pretty simple, right? 

This program is best suited for someone who is already familiar with the Fixate/Portion Fix nutrition plan, and is at an intermediate to advanced fitness level. If you are new to regular exercise and consider yourself a beginner fitness level, or are pregnant, I would suggest joining a fitness accountability group with me and start out with a more entry-level program and work your way up to completing 80 Day Obsession. 

You will need some basic equipment for this program. I recommend light, medium and heavy weights (such as 10's, 15's and 20's), the sliders and resistance loops (they come in light, medium and heavy resistance), a floor mat, and roller (optional). To participate and join into my online support and accountability groups, you will need to have me as your free coach and place your order through me so that I can add you to my next accountability support group! If you are interested in this program, please take a few minutes to fill out my form and I will get back to you with the details ASAP! 

The next 80 Day Obsession is now open for enrollment, and will begin Prep Week on January 29th, with the official day 1 and workouts beginning on Monday, February 5th. 

Hurry and fill out the application before the spots are all gone! 

80 DAY OBSESSION MEAL PLAN

The 80 Day Obsession meal plan is extremely detailed, and at first glance might seem fairly complex. But Autumn designed it super specific so that there wouldn't be much room for doubt or question. Once you take the time to learn it and get the hang of it, you will find yourself sliding right into a new routine and habit with your eating that will be easy to maintain for the long haul!

I wanted to give you a sample of my plan. Each person will use the provided formula to figure out what Plan is right for you, based on weight, goals, and activity level. Then you will simply log into your Beachbody On Demand, download the plan that's right for you, and plug in your foods/meals accordingly! You will notice that I use the Beachbody Performance Line supplements. I strongly recommend using them for the duration of this program, because they will help your body to train and perform at it's best! These workouts will challenge your body, and you will benefit from using the supplements by reducing muscle soreness and decreasing recovery time between your workouts.

I hope that this sample plan gives you some guidance!

1 red (protein), 1/2 green (veggie) per 2 egg muffin cups in this photo


1 red, 1 yellow (carb), 1 green, 1 blue (healthy fat)


1 1/4 green, 1/2 red,  1 blue and 1 tsp.

                                 2 purple (fruit), 1 tsp. 

Here is a sample of a day's meals with my plan. Basically I will eat the same times and containers each day, and I alternate every other day with the main meals (breakfast, lunches and dinners) per week, so I'm prepping 2 different breakfasts, 2 lunches and 2 dinners for the whole week, which keeps things super simple and manageable for me!



I tweaked my plan already from the first couple days, to add the shakeology as my pre-workout meal because I just felt like eating eggs and oats right away at 5AM was way too much food that early in the morning, and right before a workout. I just felt way too full and a tad bit sluggish. For people who are waiting the full 60-90 minutes to work out after eating, it would probably work just fine...but for me, with 4 kiddos and a busy schedule, I didn't want to put my workout off past 5:30 or 6:00. 

So far I'm finding that my group is getting the hang of Timed Nutrition, and they are loving the workouts as well! Probably the biggest concern I am getting from people is the length of the workouts. Day 1 and 2 were nearly an hour long, but honestly the time went by super fast, and it sure as heck didn't seem like an hour had passed! I love the routines, they are slow and paced, but effective moves that leave me feeling it the next day...which is always the goal so you know it's working! Am I right? 



I am currently accepting enrollments for my February 80 Day Obsession group, if this is something that you are wanting to do for yourself or better yet, with a friend, share this post and complete my application HERE


Hope to see you in my next online accountability group!!!! 

Jan 2, 2018

Weight Training Equipment - My Top Picks

One of the questions I get asked all the time is, what do I recommend for a weight-lifting set? 


When I first started cross training, I didn't have a huge budget. I used bands, along with the bare essentials - which at the time consisted of a set of 10 pound weights, 15's and 20's. Since you can expect to pay about $1.00 per pound, those 3 sets of weights cost me around $90 plus tax. As I got stronger, I oftentimes found myself wanting heavier weights... so as funny is it sounds, at times I was holding 2 weights at the same time for some of the lower body exercises. 

When that got old, and my business income from Health Coaching started picking up, I was ready to invest in something that was more suitable to what I needed, with less clutter in my workout space. After checking product reviews and asking around in my fitness circles, I decided to invest in Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable weights. To me, it is a far better value for your money, as you have so much more options with the weights. With what takes up the space as 2 dumbbells, you have the flexibility and option to use 5's, 7.5's, 10's, 12.5's, 15's, 17.5's, 20's, 25's, 30's, 35's, 40's, 45's, 50's and 52.5's!  The only downside to them is for certain moves, they tend to feel a bit bulky. I also decided to keep my dumbbells for drop sets and for those times I have a workout buddy join me for a workout. 


I am so happy with my investment, that I want to share with you in case you are in the same situation as I was, looking for a nice user-friendly upgrade! If you decide to invest in these for your health and fitness goals, comment back and let me know what you think of them! 

The second question I get asked all the time when creating a home gym space is, is what flooring surface do I use? Before I created my workout space, I was sweating on my living room rug. It always made me cringe to see my sweat dripping all over the area where my kids played. So once I was able to create my own home gym, I was so excited to move into a more suitable workout space that allowed for my own workout flooring! My top pick is this rubber interlocking square flooring. They are durable, super easy to install, clean up well, and give the PERFECT amount of cushioning during your workouts! I love that I don't need to use a mat for floor exercises, my workout bench doesn't slide around on me when lifting, and my knees have the perfect level of support when I'm doing high-intensity jumping exercises. All around, I have zero complaints or issues with this floor! Check it out here, 


Good luck and have FUN creating your PERFECT workout space in your home!! 

If you are looking for a fun online community to support you on your fitness journey, if you are wanting to join in my next Fitness Bootcamp, or if you're wanting to learn more about what I do as a Health Coach, click HERE to connect! 

Dec 12, 2017

80 DAY OBSESSION REVIEW - EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW!

Do you want to build up a firm, rounded butt AND burn away fat to reveal leaner, flatter abs? At the same time?!?  What if I told you YOU COULD!?! 

Introducing the newest in-home fitness program created by Autumn Calabrese, 80 Day Obsession, which was designed to help you burn fat and get lean! Click here to get it first! AVAILABLE DEC. 14TH 2017.

Read on to learn what you can expect from this extreme home workout (complete with a modifier so ANYONE can do it!)!!


WHAT IS THE 80 DAY OBSESSION?

It is the newest streamable workout program complete with a scientifically developed meal plan designed for advanced exercisers who want to build their strength and lean out their flattest abs ever. The 80 Day Obsession promises a firm, rounded booty and flat stomach. YES PLEASE! While Autumn's not new to in-home workouts, she's taking this one to a whole new level, with 80 different workouts filmed live, so you never repeat a workout! 

She talked about the program saying, "it's all about the right workouts in the right sequence, plus a targeted approach to nutrition". Because it takes both the right workouts along with the appropriate nutrition to get results, I am confident with this complete package, this is the solution to help you finally achieve the health and fitness goals you've been looking for! 

WHAT OTHER PROGRAMS HAS AUTUMN DEVELOPED?

WHO SHOULD DO 80 DAY OBSESSION?

ANYONE wanting to:
  • build a leaner, tighter body
  • add curves without bulking up
  • get those fitness model abs
  • get an extreme workout in the comfort of your own home
The workouts range from 45-60 minutes per day, 6 days per week. Enjoy a rest day once per week! The meal plan is a professionally, scientifically calibrated timed nutrition plan designed to get you max results each week of the program so that you're never left guessing what to eat.

It's going to require hard work, and this is not for everyone, BUT you'll be training like an athlete and fitness competitor, and be working every day with a super trainer to get max results!

WHAT ARE THE 80 DAY OBSESSION WORKOUTS LIKE?

The 80 Day Obsession workouts include 80 unique workouts that are designed for experienced exercisers, and each routine also includes a modifier to follow as you build up your strength and endurance, making it doable for ANY fitness level!  You will see total body workouts using weights, compound exercises, and plyo moves. These workouts are available exclusively on Beachbody On Demand (think Netflix of the Fitness World), and not on DVD. The program is divided into 3 phases that last about a month each to help you sculpt and tone your entire body. 

PHASE 1

In Phase 1, you learn the moves and proper form using your resistance bands and sliders. The focus is on building up strength and practicing good form for maximum results. 


PHASE 2

In Phase 2, you'll begin adding in compound moves to make the most use of your workout, by working multiple muscle groups at the same time. You'll also be adding more weights in this series, but you'll still be using your body weight for resistance in certain workouts as well. 


PHASE 3

The final phase is the most intense (as you might expect!). In Phase 3, you'll begin mixing in plyo moves to those compound exercises you learned in Phase 2. 


WHAT YOU'LL LOVE ABOUT THE WORKOUTS

If you are a person who experiences workout boredom, you'll especially love how no 2 workouts are the same! Even if it's the same moves, you're changing up the reps or weights you use. You can forget about being bored, and you'll always feel challenged! This program will truly feel like you're working out with your very own personal trainer because of the variety and challenge. 

WORKOUT LENGTH: 45-60 MINUTES

CALENDAR: Workout 6 days per week, with Sunday as a rest day. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED: 

80 DAY OBSESSION NUTRITION AND MEAL PLAN

If you are familiar with the 21 Day Fix, you already know Autumn's attention to nutrition is one of the reasons this program did, and continues to do so well with helping people reach their weight loss goals. She made the meal plan simple and effective, and people's results were on POINT. 

You'll be happy to know that the 80 Day Obsession meal plan is no different! 

DOES THE 80 DAY OBSESSION HAVE CONTAINERS?

Yes it does, because we all know how important portion control is with our eating, but Autumn wanted to give us a tool to help us eat EXACTLY like she does, and therefore added in timed nutrition

Just as in 21 Day Fix, you'll calculate your calorie bracket (A, B, C, or D) based on your current weight and goals. This bracket tells you how many containers of each food group to eat per day. Autumn then takes things a step further by incorporating WHEN it's the ideal time to eat certain foods, aka timed nutrition

You'll follow this simple approach to Timed Nutrition using the portion fix containers (included with your Challenge Pack) to maximize muscle recovery and performance. The nutrition guide outlines what the best foods are to have during the time of day and around your workouts. 

You'll be eating small meals throughout the day (5-6 mini-meals), and you'll never go beyond 3 hours without eating. Since the workouts are advanced, it's also recommended to use the Performance Supplements. You're going to want to help feed your muscles and help them to recover from the intense workouts!

You are also allowed a "RE-FEED DAY" which helps you refuel your muscles with energy, On this day, you'll be given more carbs to build up glycogen. This starts in week 6, and continues every few weeks after. You'll be happy to know that the 80 Day Obsession meal plan can be customized for any dietary need, like vegan or food allergies as well. 

TIMED NUTRITION

You'll use a pre-workout meal an hour before you work out, and your pre-workout supplement, Energize, about 15 minutes before you start working out to prime your body. After your workout, you'll want to have your post-workout supplement, Recover, within an hour. Then you'll eat another small meal within 2 hours of your workout. 

You'll be happy to know that you have the option to get the entire program along with the nutrition and supplements in a bundled and discounted option HERE!

DO YOU NEED WORKOUT SUPPLEMENTS?

As mentioned above, Autumn does recommend using the Performance Line Supplements because of the intensity of each workout. Taking Energize before your workout will help you continue to push through your cardio and strength workouts, as it improves your endurance. Recover after your workout helps to reduce muscle soreness and rebuild muscle. Then you can also incorporate Recharge before bed if you're still feeling sore so that you're able to push yourself the following day with your workout routine. 

While you can see results without using supplements, they can help accelerate your results, fuel your body and help you get through the workouts with greater intensity and with less soreness. You'll thank yourself for using them! 

HERE'S A PREVIEW OF THE PROGRAM


WHEN WILL THE 80 DAY OBSESSION WORKOUTS AND MEAL PLAN BE AVAILABLE?

The 80 Day Obsession workouts will be available to stream 1 workout per day starting on January 15th, 2018. There will be one new workout released Monday through Saturday. The meal plan will also be released one week ahead of time on Beachbody On Demand so that you can meal prep before starting the workouts on January 15th. 

If you start after the 15th, you'll have access to each of the workouts that have been released to date. 

THE GOOD NEWS IS BEACHBODY ON DEMAND IS ONLY $99 FOR A WHOLE YEAR, AND YOU GET TO ACCESS OVER 700+ WORKOUTS!

80 DAY OBSESSION RESULTS 

The results from the Coach Test Group for this program have been nothing short of incredible! The before and after pictures featured below are from 1 round of 80 Day Obsession. 

These results are REAL and this program is truly life-changing. If you want to see even more photos, check out my album here.  Its incredible what you can accomplish when you put your mind to a nutrition plan and fitness program for the full 80 days!  I know that you are going to rock these results too!




MY EXCLUSIVE 80 DAY OBSESSION SUPPORT GROUP

I hope you're feeling truly inspired and EXCITED about Autumn Calabrese's new workout program, and cannot wait to do this right along WITH YOU! I'd love to have you join me! 

IF YOU ARE READY TO ROCK THE RESULTS, HERE IS WHAT I NEED YOU TO DO NEXT:
  1. FILL OUT THE APPLICATION HERE or AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS POST IN THE LINK
  2. STAY UP TO DATE ON THE LATEST INFO BY JOINING MY OFFICIAL 80 DAY OBSESSION LAUNCH GROUP ON FACEBOOK
  3. TOGETHER WE WILL PICK OUT WHAT PACKAGE IS BEST FOR YOU SO THAT YOU CAN ORDER ON DECEMBER 14TH!
Remember this is a BETA TEST GROUP which means you will be the FIRST to go through the program! You have the opportunity to win $500 for completing the program and submitting your results plus you have the opportunity to become a Beachbody Challenge Winner and earn additional money for your transformation.

Myself and Team Fit4mation United would love to have you join our Elite Team for an exclusive 80 Day Obsession Group starting soon...but why wait for a New Year? 

Did you know we have a private Facebook group AND and upcoming Challenge in the Beachbody Challenger Tracker App? We'd love to help you get set up for either one, depending on your preferences. 

While the workouts don't come out until January 15th, we do have A Little Obsessed starting soon, and it's never too early to add me as your Beachbody Coach if you aren't already working with someone! If you let me know what your goals are, I can help you find the best workouts to fit your needs, and I'd love to include you in our year-round challenge! 


Contact me HERE so that I can help you get started TODAY!