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Weight Loss

Weight Loss

Losing 10 Lbs Is Easier Than You Think

August 4, 2014

I am so excited to share today about my gal pal Heylee! She is no stranger to my blog and has already made a few fabulous appearances. I was so excited when she reached out to me for encouragement and accountability to make positive clean changes in her lifestyle with diet and exercise.

My life has changed so much since committing to clean eating and exercise and wanted to share this tremendous gift with a friend and document her progress! It has been awesome to watch Heylee commit herself to these positive changes and her hard work is beginning to pay off!

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Heylee is absolutely stunning and since she’s been juicing and cleaning up her diet she is glowing! I did a little session with her back when I first introduced her to the blog in March and thought this would be perfect to show how much she has already progressed. Heylee has lost 10 lbs and you can certainly see the difference!

(March)

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(July)

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I knew that if I could make positive changes in my life that certainly anyone could too! Heylee has the right attitude and desire for change and now she is seeing the fruits of her labor! While I have been able to encourage her, help her eliminate foods and replace with clean foods and workout together this is certainly been her own discipline and determination. I am so incredibly proud of her and excited to see her reach her goal!

Look for more of Heylee on the blog when she hits her 20lb mark!!

Health, Weight Loss

How To Jump Start Your Day

July 16, 2014

If you are coffee lover then sit back while I rock your world. Charlie and I have been learning so much about the importance of regularly consuming “good fat” in your diet. As a matter of fact, we eat a generous amount of healthy fat daily. Avocados, almonds & cashews, coconut oil, and raw butter & milk. There has been a huge misconception that fat, like in butter, is bad for you and will cause you to gain weight and clog your arteries. This is simply not true and there is “very little evidence to support the contention that a diet low in cholesterol and saturated fat actually reduces death from heart disease or in any way increases one’s life span.” I highly encourage you to read this article by Dr. Axe on The Truth About Saturated Fat.

Charlie and I are a testament that good fat burns fat! We have been consuming good fat on a daily basis for a year and we are still shedding pounds! One of the ways that Charlie get’s his good fat in is by putting raw butter in his coffee!

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He had learned that by putting raw butter (best) or organic grass-fed butter in your coffee that it would give you a swift kick in the pants of energy, focus and alertness. He decided to put this theory to test a few weeks ago and let me just say the dude is in love! While the combo may seem gross, the taste is certainly not. In fact, once the butter melts it looks like a creamy latte.

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Since Charlie has been doing the butter + coffee combo what he notices most has been:

  • Incredible alertness after just 1 cup of coffee. Which is something he might get after 2-3 cups, in turn has helped him drink much less in the morning.
  • He also noticed the alertness was consistent throughout the day without a crash mid morning
  • He loves the taste and is thoroughly enjoying the health benefits

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Other benefits of coffee + raw butter or grass fed butter are:

  • Grass-fed butter has the best ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids (which reduces body fat) and is a good source of vitamin K
  • It provides healthy fats for your brain and body to create cell walls (membranes) and hormones.
  • Drinking it each morning puts your body in the routine to burn fat all day, helping you trim down overall. (YAY!)
  • gives you energy as well as increase cognitive function that you can literally feel when it kicks in for about six hours- and without the crash.

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Another awesome way to receive the good fat benefit is to also add organic coconut oil to your coffee. By adding coconut it really rev’s up your drink and produce ketones, which are created when your body creates energy from fat rather than carbohydrates.

The butter you use MUST be organic grass fed (Kerrygold Irish Butter is a great choice and easy to find in grocery stores) or even BETTER Raw Butter (research online for local farmers to purchase raw butter)! The reason for this is Most cows are corn or soy fed. It’s cheap and filling, but cows aren’t actually meant to eat that! They can’t even digest it properly and their milk produces the kinds of fats you don’t want in your body.

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Here’s the recipe for your Superman Java:

  • High quality coffee (unless you enjoy a daily dose of pesticides in your morning cup, stick to organic coffee)
  • 1-2 teaspoons of raw butter or grass fed butter (look for kerrygold irish butter)
  • Optional but certainly recommended 1 teaspoon of coconut oil
  • Need a sweet kick? Add a few drop of Stevia Extract or organic vanilla

Mix with a spoon or blend all ingredients in a food processor and ENJOY!

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Health, Weight Loss

How To Turn The Outdoors Into a Gym

July 15, 2014

If you think the only way to burn fat and gain muscle is with a gym membership then let me set the record straight for ya, it just ain’t true. I’m sorry if I burst your excuse bubble but if we can lose weight and gain muscle tone without ever stepping foot in a gym, so can you! For the first year that we started on this journey we didn’t have the extra money in our budget to workout at a gym. We knew we would have to use will power and a little creativity to accomplish our goals. When I wrote my post on How to lose weight without a gym membership, I laid out all the ways you can significantly get results at home through free online video’s. Charlie, who’s main goal has been to gain muscle had to get a little more creative as the weights we had bought for home use just weren’t cutting it.

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Charlie has been running for the past 4-5 months. On one of his runs he ran by the factory here in Franklin. He saw an opportunity to get an extra burst out of his workout by using some of the old trains. Burst exercising is 90%-100% of your maximum effort for 30-60 seconds in order to burn your body’s stored sugar, followed by 30-60 seconds of low impact for recovery. This causes your body to burn fat for the next 36 hours to replace your body’s vital energy stores. This signals fat burning enzymes and aids in muscle mass development (Burst Training, Dr.Axe)

Charlie turned this old train scene into a few intense burst workouts.Talk about an awesome lower & upper body workout and a serious sweat feast.

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Jumping jacks and push up’s if done with full effort is an excellent way to burst exercise and can be done anywhere!

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You don’t have to spend money on workout gear for your house. Look around your home surroundings and there is a good chance you can find things like a pull up bar or even weights made from cinder blocks. A lot of parks with walking tracks have built in workout bars sections.

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If there is a will there is certainly a way. This is a scene that we see a lot at our house. The kids love taking turns to be daddy’s weights. You would be surprised how much of a workout the extra 20-30 lbs gives.

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Utilize the resources around you, parks, buildings even the corner of your kitchen counter can be turned into an arm workout! Check out free workout program’s like Fitness Blender, start running, kick boxing etc..! Just move!! Don’t let anything get in the way of accomplishing your goals!

Health, Weight Loss

New Season, New Challenge

July 11, 2014

I have entered into a new season of working out and I’m pretty darn excited about it. I am still exercising with HIIT and Tabata style routines through Fitness Blender‘s free online workouts but my new found adventure and challenge has been running. Even more exciting is that I have a workout buddy!! In the past, I never really enjoyed running but with the help of Insanity and HIIT routines I have built stamina and endurance that has made it so much easier. I have been exercising alone for the past year and I can’t tell you how thrilling it is to have my very good friend Heylee joining me in this new venture!

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Yesterday we completed our first 5 mile run together and we were quite proud of this new milestone. We keep each other accountable to get up, meet and encourage each other to keep going during those last miles. I’m thrilled at her desire to make changes in her personal health and excited to see her reach her goals!

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Working out isn’t only about weight loss for me anymore. When I go without I feel a physical difference in my daily performance. I’m addicted to the chemical reaction that I have from sweating,raising my heart rate and releasing endorphins. I am more productive, effective and ready for my day as opposed to the days that I don’t move. My attitude and behavior are significantly different when I get up and workout. For the first time ever I am setting goals that I never thought I could achieve and even more exciting is that I get to encourage Heylee in the same way and celebrate over our victories together.

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Working out alone this past year has solidified my commitment to health and exercise. I realize now the important role it plays in my life. In the same way that I understand diet to be crucial to a healthy lifestyle, moving and raising your core temperature, sweating out toxins, bringing in new oxygen and burning fat is simply how God has created the body to function. We have been given amazing vessels that can be fine tuned to perform for us! I have never felt better in my life!

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Health, Weight Loss

Deflating

June 16, 2014

I am the queen of splurging. Even after a year of revamping my diet and discipling myself to live differently and intentionally about how I eat, I still can go wild and consume food like the world is ending. This month has been particularly hard for me because we have had lots of reason to celebrate, like my birthday, Father’s day and usually that means eating…a lot.

This past weekend we spent the majority of our meals eating processed junk. I’m not really excited to admit that but we did. The one big difference about how we eat now compared to before is that at some point we always get back on track.

I have learned to become pretty in tune with my body, especially when I can tell I am building up some toxicity after eating processed food a few days in a row. Some of the clues that our bodies begin to give us warning signs are with symptoms such as:

  • Sugar Cravings
  • Low energy
  • Bloating or gas
  • Mood swing
  • Brain Fog
  • Fluid retention
  • Migraines or headaches

Going out to eat makes it incredibly hard to control or know the quality of food that you eating. Which is why when we splurge and eat out a few consecutive nights in a row, I begin feeling my quality of life diminish.

Bloating and sugar cravings are usually my first warning signs. Here are some ways I jump back on the band wagon, enable detox, and kick the sugar cravings.

I first start my morning when I’m suffering with heavy bloating with activated charcoal.

“Most toxic substances in your gastrointestinal tract, like the chemicals in processed foods, carry a positive charge. One of the main benefits of activated carbon is that it has a strong negative charge that literally draws these chemicals, traces of heavy metals and other undesirable contaminants into its structure. It has even been shown to absorb and trap hydrogen sulphide, also known as ‘rotten egg gas’ for good reason. Importantly, activated carbon is not metabolized in your body in any way. It passes through your digestive tract like a million microscopic vacuum cleaners, hoovering up toxins as it goes. However, since it’s so good at it’s job, it’s necessary to take it only at certain times and in a certain way.” (Health Ambition, Activated Charcoal http://tinyurl.com/oks5r28)

It is important to note that charcoal will absorb everything in your digestive tract. Take activated carbon on an empty stomach with a large glass of water, well away from meals, supplements and particularly medications.

A couple hours after this I normally begin feeling tremendous relief from bloating or gas. I then will make a shot glass of apple cider vinegar. It’s benefits are amazing and numerous and will chase away any left over bloating sensations. ACV help slow digestion of starch which is the cause in blood sugar spikes after meals. Apple cider vinegar also, works as a detox and will help to break down fats, and improves bowel workings.

To make this shot glass use 2-3 Tablespoons of ACV, dilute with purified water to your liking, add raw honey or stevia and cinnamon to help cut the vinegar taste.

I am usually reset at this point and can make healthy decisions about what I eat and much more inclined to have motivation to do a high intense workout allowing me to sweat out more toxins.

Give your body breaks and rest especially when you go on a splurge. Splurges are inevitable but try and reduce the consistency and get back on track quickly after!

Today I begin my deflating and jumping back on the bandwagon. Just because we get off track momentarily does’t mean all is lost! Getting back on is one of the greatest ways to encourage you that you are much more disciplined than you realized!

Weight Loss

Progress Report: Healing The Gap

May 15, 2014

Back in October I wrote my first post on my diastasis recti and how I had been working to heal my 3 finger gap. A diastasis is pretty common especially among pregnant women as our growing bellies make room for our babies and often the abdominal wall doesn’t fuse back together leaving you looking pregnant after you’ve had the baby months to years after birth. Thankfully with weight loss, diet change and exercise, my gap is about half a finger to being closed! It is absolutely possible to heal your gap closed without ever needing surgery. My process has taken a year but has been easier than I ever realized it would be.

In my first 6 months I revamped my diet and began carefully practicing safe healing exercise methods and started seeing results. At the time I was using the Dia Method so that I could be sure not to damage or widen my gap any further.

Slowly but surely I continued to use the methods in my normal workout routines modifying moves like abdimonal crunches (as these are prohibited with a diastasis). With time and high intense workouts (Insanity) I have gone from a 3 finger gap to barely being able to squeeze my finger in between my abdominal wall.

All in all the progress has been huge. I still want to continue to heal until I can no longer fit any fingers in between my abs. Time and consistency of exercise will help my achieve this goal.

There are wonderful programs out there like the Dia method, lots of tutorials on youtube that teach you how to correctly heal your gap without damaging it any further. It is possible to heal your abdominal wall after pregnancy without ever needing surgery and should always be your first method in healing your diastasis. Our bodies ability to heal, if given the right tools, is truly magnificent!

Health, Weight Loss

The Insanity is OVER!!

April 16, 2014

I am so glad to be finally finished with Insanity. It was an amazing 60 days and I’m so proud that I did it! Overall, I feel strong and my body has really changed. I am beginning to see so much more toning and Improvement in my endurance.

I have hit a hard place in weight loss. I would love to shed these last 10 lbs and I still hope to reach my goal but as I get closer to that number I am noticing that it is taking much longer than in the beginning! During Insanity I only lost 5 pounds but I also realize I have gained muscle.

But overall I am so thrilled at my progress! Working out has become a part of my ritual. It’s like my coffee in that if I don’t do it my day feels off. When I began this crazy weight loss ride almost a year ago I was shopping for XL tops and wearing 14/16 size pants. It still takes me off guard when I see small’s and mediums in my dressing room and now wearing size 8/10 pants.

My 8 month progress:

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8 months of hard work…

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I have not only made strides in my physical appearance but also my overall health. To me this is even more important than what is shown through my physique. My goal is to continue to alkaline my body, rid myself of toxicity and achieve optimal health through eating raw whole and clean foods.

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I am no one extraordinary. I’m just a mom with 3 kids trying to do my best to achieve great health. This all started with a decision and a plan. I’ve had up’s and down’s along the way, I’ve messed up or had to alter my diet. But overall, my greatest success was that I never stopped moving forward. I didn’t allow one cheat day to mess everything up and get off track. I continued to focus on the prize ahead. I’m closer now that I have been in a very long time. Every sacrifice has been worth it in the end. This is not a diet, this is my life. I am confident I will continue to move forward.

Weight Loss

Pure Insanity

March 13, 2014

I have reached the half way point of this 60 day journey with Insanity. This has been by far one of the most sweat intense, give it my all, tough challenging workouts I have ever attempted. I have grown stronger, gained more momentum and can push myself harder. Its crazy and I love it! I wanted to give my personal review and show my progress as a result from taking this 60 day challenge!

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Insanity is tough but I believe that most people could do this workout. By modifying and working at your own pace you can still achieve great results. Month 1 consist of 30 min Interval and circuit training workouts. The first week you are focusing on learning the moves and sweating a whole lot. By the 2nd and 3rd week I was able to keep up with the video without stopping. Month 2 every workout starts with the word max and that is exactly what it is. You are working at your MAX! I’m on my first week of month 2 and it’s been brutal. It’s a new a challenge to beat and everyday I try to get a little better. Once you are finished you feel incredible and exhausted at the same time.

When you take the insanity challenge they encourage you to take photos to help show your results. You take a before, middle and after shot. At first I thought it was a little silly until over the past weekend I took my half way mark photo. I truly couldn’t believe how much my body has already changed in 30 days.

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I’m incredibly encouraged and anxious to reach the end! I am trying to keep my diet as clean as I can. I have always allowed myself to be more relaxed and eat out on weekends but because my 10 year anniversary is just around the corner I am being abnormally strict and allowing 1 “cheat” meal a week. I eat lots of clean and nutritious foods all week long. Insanity makes me hungry all the time so I have stocked my cabinets full of various nuts and fruits for constant snacking options. This is by no means a diet this is my lifestyle now. I am just restricting eating out to achieve my weight loss.

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If you are hesitant to do Insanity because you have heard how hard it is be encouraged that someone like me who has never been much into working out is half way through this 60 day challenge and loving it. It’s awesome to see yourself work harder and get better. Take the challenge it’s worth it!

Weight Loss

Lose Weight Without a Gym Membership

February 25, 2014

I  lost 45 lbs in 8.5 months and I didn’t once step foot in a gym. I don’t say this to brag by any means I mean this as encouragement! A lot of people do not have the extra funds to go towards a gym membership nor do they need one to accomplish weight loss. I completely understand the desire of working out with a community of others set out wanting the same goal. It’s not a bad thing by any means and can certainly contribute to weight loss but it IS absolutely possible to dramatically change your weight all from home.

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Weight loss from my experience is completely behavioral and emotional. I have lived on the roller coaster ride of emotions that come with “wanting” to lose weight. I wanted to be thinner and healthier but my behavior wanted a burger and a coke. It takes self-will, determination and all the self-control you can muster up. It starts with your diet before anything else. Controlling and disciplining your eating habits first will enable you to commit to consistent exercising. I give 90% credit of my weight loss to my diet. It wasn’t until I was already losing weight that I began exercising. Disciplining my diet made working out a natural next step.

We live in a world where so much is available to us at our fingertips. YouTube alone has thousands of workout videos available to you right now implementing some of the same exercise routines in gyms. You can find dance, cardio & aerobic, HIIT, tababta, yoga, pilates, barre and so on. Pinterest takes the guess work out of searching YouTube and allows you to start pining your favorite workout videos where you could potentially build your own exercise program. You can get killer workouts and amazing results from FREE workouts like FitnessBlenderBody Rock TV, and even an awesome new app called Hot5 Fitness that are fast and effective workouts for people on the go.

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If your still not convinced check out this awesome list I found from a blogger names Beautifully Bella Faith

ABS

Abs All Night Challenge

Abtacular Pilates Workout

As Long As You Love Me Love Handles Challenge

Best Lower Ab Workout Ever

Bikini Blaster 5: MUFFINTOPLESS!

Corset Workout for a Slim Waist

Fabulous Flat Abs for Beginners

Good Time Abs Challenge

Kill That Muffintop for Beginners

Love Your Abs Routine

POP Pilates: Abominable Abdominals

POP Pilates: Hot Abs!

POP Pilates: Intense Ab Workout

POP Pilates: Miley Cyrus Ab Workout

POP Pilates: Muffintop Meltdown

POP Pilates: TOUGH LOVE Handles Workout

Sleek & Slender Abs

Superstar Abs Workout

Targeting Love Handles

Victoria Secret Model Ab Workout

VSX Sport Presents the Sexiest Workout Ever: Core

Waist Slimming POP Pilates to Wings by Little Mix

You’ve Got Abs! Flat Abs Pilates Workout

 ARMS

5 Minute Arms

Fine Toning Arm Routine

Get Madonna’s Arms

Love Your Arms Routine

Makeover Workout: Toned Arms in 2013

Plank Workout for Flat Abs and Toned Arms

Sleek and Sexy Arms for Beginners

Tank Top Arms Workout

Victoria Secret Angel Arm Slimming Workout

VSX Sport Presents the Sexiest Workout Ever: Arms

Want U Back Arms Challenge

BUTT

Beautiful Booty Workout

Bikini Blaster 6: Booty Booty Booty

Brooke Burke’s Butt Workout

Bubble Butt (Clenching my Booty) Workout

Butt Lift Pilates Workout for Beginners

Lift & Tone Booty Routine

Love Your Booty Routine

POP Pilates: Bikini Booty Thong Workout

POP Pilates: Pippa’s Butt Workout

Quiet Cardio Shhh! with Coach Nicole & Casey Ho

Scarlett Johannson Best Butt Workout

Victoria Secret Bombshell Butt Workout

VSX Sport Presents the Sexiest Workout Ever: Butt

What Makes You Bootyful Butt Challenge

CARDIO

Fat Burning Cardio Warm Up (POP Cardio)

Food Baby HIIT Workout (POP Cardio)

Full Body Cardio Core 20 Min Workout

Heartbeat Heaven HIIT Workout

Insanity 20 Min Workout

Like Money Apartment Friendly POP Cardio

One More Night Cardio Challenge

POP Cardio Carnage! – Invade London

POP CARDIO: Fat Melting Routine

POP Kicks: Total Body Cardio Kickboxing

Victoria’s Secret Model Workout: 10-Minute Fat Blasting Circuit

CHEST

Chest Exercises to Bust Bra Fat

LEGS

Bikini Blaster 2: Sexy Legs Workout Part 1

Call Me Maybe Mighty Squat Challenge

Drive By Inner Thighs Challenge

HIITilates: My Thighs are Dying!

Live While We’re Young Inner Thigh Workout

Lolo Jones Legs ‘n Lunges Challenge

Long, Lean Dancer’s Legs Pilates Workout

Love Your Legs Workout

POP Pilates: Beginner Inner Thighs: Invade London

POP Pilates: Inner Thigh Insanity

POP Pilates: Perky Butt ‘n Long Lean Legs

Victoria Secret Supermodel Stilleto Legs Workout

VSX Sport Presents the Sexiest Workout Ever: Legs

YOGA

5 Minute Workout

Core Strength

Full Body Yoga Routine

Hard Poses Made Easy

Jillian Michaels: Yoga Meltdown Level 1

Morning Energy Yoga

Morning Routine

Routine for Stress Relief

Strong Abs Routine

Yoga for Relaxation

Another way to get the best bang for your buck is to to see which workout videos your buddies have. Maybe even have a get together with a few friends and bring all your exercise videos and swap for a few months. There are always ways to start implementing healthy habits into your life.

If your on a tight budget or trying to become debt free use the money you have been using on a gym and put it towards debt. Workout from home, clean up your diet and achieve weight loss without ever leaving home or spending unnecessary money. Becoming healthy doesn’t have to start with a gym membership it begins with a personal decision of commitment, discipline and self-control. If you have a will to change your life and you want it bad enough, you will find a way.

Weight Loss

Weight Loss Update: Inch by Inch

February 3, 2014

I am learning that sometimes getting on the scale isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be. I have been stuck at the same weight now for a little over a month even though I have not stopped working out 5-6 days a week and eating well. At first I was a little discouraged and thought maybe my body was comfortable and this would be my grand finale but I have found that the “muscle weighs more than fat” theory is pretty true. I bought this dress a few months back in hopes that I would successfully be able to wear it after loosing more weight. It was rather tight when I bought it and I knew i wouldn’t feel comfortable wearing it out until it was substantially looser. Recently I have noticed that my pants have been fitting more roomy and I began to realize that even though the scale wasn’t dropping I was still loosing inches. Last week I tried this dress on and was surprised to find how much looser it was. Ok, I was more like ecstatic, elated, excited, and enthralled!! Progress is motivating and I am pretty determined to finish this race.

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