Some Good Things Are in Store…

Life has been a wee bit crazy this past month or two…lots of changes. Good changes though…I can’t wait to tell you ALL about them. Until then…here is a sneak peak. :) Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

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How to Travel & Keep Up Your Healthy Habits

I love to travel. I love weekend getaways. I love day trips. I love adventures just about anywhere, near or far. Most people think of vacations, and they tend to think of vacationing from all responsibility, including any healthy habits they may have. While I do think that there is a time and a place for indulgence, I also think that making good health a part of your lifestyle wherever you are will make you happier (and healthier) in the long run. Don’t get me wrong, vacations are meant to be enjoyed. You should try wonderful food, and indulge every now and then, but if you can keep to some healthy habits along the way you may find that you enjoy those wonderful foods and indulgences far more!

1. BYOB. Bring your own breakfast. Breakfast is usually the hardest meal on vacation because going out to breakfast more than likely means pastries, pancakes, heavy syrup, cheesy eggs, and donuts. It is easy to bring along some protein bars, fresh fruit, oatmeal packets, almonds, nut butter, jerky, and other packable items that you can eat for breakfast that will start your day on a better note than an excessive blood sugar high.

2. Find something active to do everyday. It is amazing what you can do with your surroundings. Go out for a morning walk and explore wherever you may be. Utilize the hotel gym. Do a simple and quick circuit in your hotel room. Go for a run. Plan some activities in your day that require some walking so you are sure to get some exercise in. vacationThere are a lot of cities that offer awesome bike tours, or that have fun parks and gardens to explore. Walking around town is great exercise!

3. Don’t be afraid to make use of your surroundings. alexandersbeachThere are park benches, hills, playgrounds, and all sorts of sidewalks everywhere you go that you can make use of. It is a matter of going and doing!

4. Choose healthy eats. I am one hundred percent convinced that you can eat healthy just about anywhere. It is jus a matter of being willing to look for healthy options. Bring snacks with you if you are worried that there aren’t going to be options that you will eat. It is better to be prepared than to find yourself starving, leaving you likely to eat whatever you  can get your hands on. It is also a good idea to bring your own healthy snacks to have on hand for in-between times! Protein bars, nuts, popcorn, jerky, string cheese, dried fruit, fresh fruit, baby carrots, fresh veggies…etc. Even if you may not be able to exercise like you would normally, you can still make good eating decisions.

5. Make your healthy lifestyle the norm. If you do your best to stick to your normal healthy habits while you are away from home, it won’t be a big effort to get back into your routine when you get home. Remember that everyday you choose to eat what you eat, to exercise or not, to make healthy decisions vs. unhealthy ones…so decide to be healthy. Make it who you are. I promise you will benefit from it.

6. Enjoy some R&R. As much as exercise and being active is healthy, relaxation is healthy too. It may be good for you to rest a bit if need be. Take advantage of getting some good sleep, resting up, and relaxing on your vacations too. It’s all about a healthy balance!

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Full Body Circuit Workout

It’s a good day for a circuit workout! {frame 1: rotating jump squats, 2: walkout push-ups, 3: wide oblique high knees, 4: side to side push-ups, 5: v crunches, 6: single leg squats with a high knee} Do 1 minute of each exercise 3-5 times through, splitting the last minute of single leg squats into 30 seconds per leg. Add weights to increase intensity on the jump squats & single leg squats.

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Ten Fitness Products I Cannot Live Without

A few months ago, I was on a hike with some of my amazing friends…these friends…Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 7.06.23 PMand we started chatting about our top 10 “must have” lists, or favorites, if you will…favorite beauty products, favorite articles of clothing, favorite home items…etc. Since then I have constantly find myself making mental notes of “favorite thing” lists all of the time. I wanted to share my favorite fitness products that I currently cannot live without.

  1. Lululemon speed shorts. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 7.09.10 PMI fought the Lululemon phenomenon for a long time because their stuff is pricey, and I knew the second i tried it I would fall in love. Well, I was right. I am a HUGE fan of their stuff, particularly their speed shorts. They fit AWESOME. I love the waistband. They are so comfortable, plus they are darling.
  2. GapFit mesh tank. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 7.10.04 PMI may or may not own this tank in 4 different colors. I LOVE it. It fits so well. It breathes. It is super comfortable. It is cute. It washes well. It’s awesome. Get one…or 4.
  3. Nike Roshe RunnersScreen Shot 2014-07-14 at 7.10.34 PM While I wouldn’t recommend these for running. I LOVE them for lifting weights, cross training, and just kicking around town. They are like walking on clouds. So comfortable. Plus, anything green and neon I am always on board with.
  4. Skullcandy Jib Earbuds.Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 7.12.18 PMI have mentioned several times that I love music. It is what gets me through my workouts. I have been completely converted to these earbuds because they stay put, and they are extremely comfortable, even when i’m sweating like crazy. They also block out outside noise which I love. It helps me to focus on the current show I am hooked on. Which brings me to my next must have.
  5. Netflix. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 7.14.06 PMYou may not consider this a “fitness product” but I totally do. If you are trying to figure out how to make it through your cardio, stop staring trying to entertain yourself by people watching (oh wait, I still do that too…) and find a good series to watch on Netflix. I try to keep my TV watching to a minimum, so it is a total treat to me to get my intervals on while watching Serena and Blair duke it out, or Meredith and McDreamy reconcile differences…again, or allowing old episodes of One Tree Hill to take me away. Worth it.
  6. TRX trainer. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 7.11.39 PMAnyone who has worked out with me knows my love for the TRX. It is a simple contraption that uses straps to work with your own body weight to get a KILLER workout. I use them to train my clients all the time. They are fantastic because they are portable, so you can literally use them anywhere. They are great for people who are rehabbing injuries because they allow you to displace weight when necessary. They are awesome.
  7. Garmin. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 10.58.44 PMWhile I may not be doing much distance running these days, I LOVE my Garmin. I own the Garmin Forerunner 210. It is a GPS enabled Garmin that tracks distance, calories, pace, time, etc. I love it because I can clock my heart rate, time my outdoor intervals, and see how hard I am really working. It’s fantastic.
  8. HMDX Jam Wireless Speaker. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 11.02.37 PMI have this tiny speaker, and it BLOWS me away with how loud this little thing is. I will use this when I’m working out outdoors with my clients and it helps so much to keep some tunes blasting while we do so.
  9. GapFit Gfast Leggings. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 11.19.04 PMWhen I find a good pair of leggings I get really excited about it. These GapFit leggings are just the right thickness, they wash well, and they are really comfortable. They also frequently go on sale, which makes me love them even more. :)
  10. Shaka Laka Chapstick. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 11.23.07 PMThis is another one you may not consider a fitness product, but I %100 do. I cannot workout with chapped lips. It ruins my whole workout. My niece turned me on to this AMAZING chapstick that makes me want to lick my lips. I love the Maui Mint and the Coconut. This product can be a bit hard to find. If you live in Utah county, it is available at Will’s Pit Stop in Provo. Otherwise, you may want to get it online. It is real good.

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Product Review: eShakti Clothing

Let’s just start by saying this may be my favorite product review to date. The wonderful people over at eShakti.com asked me if I would choose an article of clothing from their site to do a review for them. Me & Shopping? Yes please. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetI instantly fell in love with this darling skirt. I have a hard time finding skirts that are a length that I like, and this one was perfect. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetIt has a super flattering fit, and POCKETS. Hello. I love anything that i can wear with black that has pockets. Win/win/win. I love the fit and high waisted style, and I love the material it is made out of. This particular skirt is a cotton/poly blend that gives it some structure. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetI feel like you could dress it up, dress it down. Wear it with tights for winter, or lighten it up for summer. In short, I absolutely love it.

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Muncher Cruncher Monday Melt Down

Tomorrow is Monday! Sometimes I get a little of what I call Sundanxiety on Sunday nights because I love the weekend, so much, BUT I do love getting a fresh start on my workouts and my eating. Mondays tend to bring that on. I want YOU to start your Monday off right as well…with an awesome sweat session. Here is a killer circuit workout to melt your weekend woes away. MunchercrunchermondaymeltdownExercise Details:

  • Squat Jumps w/high knees – Squat down low, and jump back up trying to get your knees as high off the ground as you can.
  • Squat Curl Presses w/DB – Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Squat down low, return to standing, curl your dumbbells, and press overhead.
  • Alternating Elevated Side Pushups – Place one arm up on a basketball, med ball, dumbbell, or step to elevate one side up. Do a full pushup. Alternate from one side to the next if you can. If you can’t do all 10 on one side, and then finish with 10 on the other side.
  • Deep Reverse Lunges w/DB – Stand in place with one DB in your left hand. Step back in to a deep lunge with your left leg. You want your left knee to touch the ground, and your DB to touch the floor. Return to standing, and repeat all 20 on the same side.
  • Triceps Pushups – These are pushups with your elbows as close to the sides of your body as possible.
  • Plank Knees (front, side diagonal) – Get into a plank pushup position. Alternate bringing one knee to your chest, followed by the other knee. Do 10 of each. Next, bring one knee to your outside elbow. Alternate 10 of these on each side. Finish by bringing your knee across your chest, to your opposite elbow. Do 10 of each of these.

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Easy Dietary Changes That Will Change How You “Diet” Forever

For a lot of people who have ever wanted to improve the way that they look and feel, the first thing that usually happens is an attempt at some crazy diet. Unfortunately, the second thing that usually happens is the extreme attempts become too much to handle, and old habits return far too quickly. This cycle can be so frustrating. It can also be very hard on a person’s metabolism, making it even more difficult for them to lose weight or maintain a healthier lifestyle. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

So, what is an overweight, frustrated, unhealthy person to do? STOP DIETING…and start making dietary changes that will be lasting. I know that this seems impossible to some, but it isn’t I promise. Look at this list, pick something that you can start with and stick to it. When this change becomes habitual, add something else to it, and so on…until you’ve reached your goals!

  • Drink 100 oz of water per day.
  • Cut out processed sugars
  • Make sure you eat 4-8 servings of veggies per day
  • Increase your lean protein intake. Women: 100 grams Men: 150 (Note: This doesn’t mean adding in a bunch more calories by ramping up your protein, but replace some of the food choices that aren’t great with lean protein)
  • Decrease your sugar intake (This will make all the difference. I promise. Remember that fruit has sugar in it to, so decreasing your fruit intake may be beneficial)
  • Eat a diet of whole foods. Get rid of the processed garbage.
  • Eat fresh. Enjoy seasonal produce! It’s so good!
  • Cut out the excessive snacking. Extra calories make for extra pounds. This means grocery store samples, licking the brownie batter bowl, finishing off your kids meals, etc.
  • Start your morning with protein. If you can get 25-30 grams of protein in first thing in the morning, you will get your metabolism going, stay more full throughout the day, regulate your blood sugar, and you will be likely to make better decisions throughout the day.
  • Cut out the treats. Maybe you don’t need a bowl of ice cream before bed every night? Just saying.
  • Cut down on your refined carbohydrates.
  • Cut out full sugar soda.
  • Make sure you always have healthy go-to foods on hand. This will keep you from snacking on empty calories that won’t benefit your goals.
  • Change the way you eat out. There is a common mindset that people have that every time they eat out is a free for all to unhealthy options. If you think this way, it’s likely that you will be packing on the extra pounds. Instead, keep your healthy choices consistent, and save indulgences for occasional meals! Skip the bread bowls, the chips and salsa, and the appetizers. Almost every restaurant has healthy options if you are willing to look!

These tips are all very simple, but they can make a HUGE difference in the way you look and feel!

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Ten Things That will Keep Your Summer Healthy

Summer is the best. I love the weather. I love the fun family times. I love the holidays. I love the fresh produce. I love the fun vacations. I love the outdoor activities. I love it ALL!! However, With all of this goodness that I love comes a busy schedule that often lends itself to missed workouts, increased summer treats, and excuses for not living the healthy way you are wanting to be living. Make this summer different! The following are some tips that can help you to have a fun, happy, and HEALTHY summer.

1. Pre plan your meals. With summer being so busy, having an idea of what you want to eat for the week can help you to keep yourself on track with healthy meals.

2. Plan meals that are quick & easy. Planning your meals is important, but I find myself wanting to be in a hot kitchen as little as possible. Are you the same way? With that being said, I would make your meals easy and simple. Make healthy salads. Use your crock pot. Capitalize on all the fresh produce that is around. It is so good!aug14132

3. Stock up on healthy snacks you can grab. Having healthy snacks on hand (veggies & hummus, fruit, popcorn, Larabars, Questbars, nuts, etc) allows you to have healthy stuff to take with you on the go on all of your summer adventures. Instead of getting cheese fries and nachos at the pool, bring your own goods and you will be well prepared! 

4. Get your workouts done in the morning. Summer is hot. When you get your workouts done early in the morning, you will not have to worry about sweating during the heat of the day. Summer mornings are magical. The sun rises early and it is beautiful outside! Getting your workout out of the way will allow you to enjoy your busy summer activities without having the need to workout hanging over your head.

5. Get Grilling. Oh, how I love grilling in the summertime. It is the best. You can whip up some amazing healthy options on the grill. Experiment grilling your chicken, fish, and lean cuts of beef with different marinades and rubs. Make shish kabobs. Grill your veggies. The possibilities are endless. The cleanup is minimal, and the taste is off the charts. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

6. Hydrate. The heat of summer means an increase in sweat. Don’t forget to stay hydrated. Bring a water bottle with you wherever you go. It will help to keep you cool and hydrated!

7. Make your summer ACTivities ACTive. Find things to do outside to enjoy the beautiful summer weather. Go on hikes. Explore your surroundings. Ride bikes. Go for walks. Go paddle boarding. Just go! You will burn calories and make awesome memories. IMG_7499

8. Choose your “cool treats” wisely. One of the hardest things for me during the summer is to not want to dive into a giant waffle cone of ice cream or shave ice every single day. It is just what sounds good to me with the hot weather. I’m not saying you can’t dig into these delights every now and again, but I’d do so sparingly. These cool treats tend to be backed with sugar, which isn’t going to help you reach your goals. Go for frozen yogurt instead, make your own fruit smoothies, make your own banana ice cream, etc.

9. Change your transportation. Instead of driving everywhere ride your bike or walk! You will up your calorie burn, and you will see your surroundings in a whole new way!

10. Don’t use vacations as an excuse. Summer vacations are the best. I get that. However, going from one vacation to the next with a “vacation mentality” is going to kill your goals. Decide to stay healthy and active while you are on vacation. Keep moving. Make healthy eating choices. You can do it. You just have to decide to do so!

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Product Review: Lesser Evil Popcorn

It’s a real good day when a box of popcorn shows up on my doorstep to be reviewed. I’ve become a bit of a popcorn snob in my quest to find healthy snacks that are gluten free. I’ve found that there are actually a lot of pre-popped popcorn options that are available out there, which is GREAT. I’ve also found that they are not all tasty or healthy. The wonderful people over at Lesser Evil were kind enough to send me some of their products to test out. IMG_7614 I tend to like the popcorn that is made with sunflower oil or coconut oil the best. Read your product labels my friends! This product ABSOLUTELY fit the bill. I mean, LOOK at these ingredients…Organic non-GMO popcorn, organic coconut oil, & himalayan salt? YES PLEASE. IMG_7619 The four flavors that I tried were; Himalayan Pink (basically a salty popcorn), Himalayan Sweetness (a sweet and salty popcorn), Chia Pop: Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper, and Chia Pop: Aged White Cheddar. I was a fan of all four. 
IMG_7617You can’t go wrong with these two “Buddha Bowl” flavors. They were light, and delicious. They had a great taste, and they weren’t dry like some bagged popcorn can be. The coconut oil gave it a hint of sweetness, which was delightful. Loved it. IMG_7618The nutrition facts were also right on point. 37 calories per cup? Yes, I think that sounds great. The Himalayan Sweetness was the perfect mix of salty and sweet. I would consider this more of a treat because the sugar content is a little higher, but it was very good.IMG_7620 I had never had anything like the chia popcorn before, and I thought it was wonderful. The Sea Salt and Cracked Pepper popcorn was dusted with seasonings that gave it a savory/peppery flavor…SO good. The aged White Cheddar was also very flavorful…finger licking good, if you will. :) It felt like an indulgence, and yet it was just a tasty & healthy snack.

I found these Lesser Evil products at my local Sprouts. Click HERE to find where you might be able to find this delicious product near you!

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Healthy Disneyland Food: It’s Possible.

Disneyland is the best. It just is. The wonderful rides, the nostalgia, the scent of churros, the magic of it all, and every other amazing detail that makes Disneyland fantastic. I love it. It’s hard not to feel like a kid again when you are walking right down the middle of main street USA. munchercruncherdisney3I write all the time about moderation. I think that eating healthy the majority of the time and indulging in something you love every now and again is absolutely fine. However, most people live with the opposite mindset; eating whatever they want the majority of the time…occasionally dipping into the healthy stuff every now and again. I can promise you, if you want to see any type of progress in your health and weight loss you HAVE to consistently eat well. It is just the way it is.

With that being said, I thought I’d give you some tips on how to be healthy at the happiest place on earth.

1. Pack your own goods. If you are worried about finding healthy options that you will like in the park, or if you just want to save some cash on food…bring your own food! We brought a small cooler pack with our own lunch. I had turkey, hummus, and veggies. It was delicious. I also brought a Questbar, fruit, nuts, popcorn, and water to snack on throughout the day. munchercruncherdisneylandIf you don’t want to carry your cooler, put it in a locker outside the park. It’s like $7, and you won’t have to worry about lugging it around. I would also suggest Larabars, apples, bananas, nuts, dried fruit, turkey jerky, and cut up fresh veggies if you don’t want a cooler because they are easy to carry around.

2. Seek out the healthy restaurants. Believe it or not, there are actually some good finds in the park as far as eating is concerned. munchercruncherdisney2I had grilled chicken and veggie kebabs that were at the restaurant right across from the Indiana Jones ride. These were delicious, and moderately priced as well. Amanda found a similar option with Mediterranean skewers in California Adventure at the Paradise Garden Grill, located on Paradise Pier. Hers came with a cilantro sauce that looked divine.

3. Look for the healthy snack stands. There are kiosks all over Disneyland and California Adventure that offer snack sized fruit bowls, packs of nuts, pineapple spears, apples, bananas, hummus, cut up vegetables,  and vitamin waters. The key here is looking for these options. It is very easy to find yourself starving and reaching for the quickest, (and most heavenly smelling) option that is close by. Plan ahead. Set yourself up for success, not failure.

4. Choose your indulgences wisely. If there is something that you can’t live without at Disneyland, the dole whip, the churro, the chocolate dipped banana…whatever it may be…choose to make the majority of your day as healthy as you can and then enjoy every bite of that waffle cone. Instead of feeling sick after your day of fun, you’ll be proud of yourself for walking like a fool and practicing some self control. It will make your indulgences taste that much better!

Oh…and FYI: On average…Park Hoppers who spend the whole day at Disneyland walk between 15-20 miles, burning 180-350 calories per hour, depending on how much you are walking. THAT is awesome.

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