21 Day Fix Banana Pancake Recipe

Happy January everyone!  Just another snow day here in Central PA.  I’m really grateful for the Turbo charged ice scraper/snow brush my hubby got me for Christmas.  It has an extension button that makes it up to 50″ long and a rotating brush so you can reach all the snow on your SUV.

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I officially finished the 21 Day Portion Fix yesterday and I am starting on the maintenance program today.  If you are someone that is looking for a way to lose extra pounds that is healthy and is NOT a crazy impossible diet, this one works.  I lost the Christmas weight I wanted to lose.  I did not starve or eat weird things for weeks on end.  There are many tasty recipes (aka Pinterest) you can find.  Just search “21 day fix”.  The best thing is most of them are really simple.  I can whip one up in 30 minutes or less.

Since school was cancelled again, I used my extra time to modify a recipe I found for Banana Pancakes.  It wasn’t fluffy enough for me so I changed it a little.  The pancakes were much better and they were worth 1 fruit, 1 carb, 1 protein and one teaspoon. Try it and see if you like it.

bananapancakes

1 banana

2 eggs

1/2 yellow container of oatmeal, 1/2 yellow  container of Bisquik (this is my change to make them fluffier)

1 tsp of butter

  1. Mix the first three ingredients in a blender until batter consistency
  2. Grease an electric skillet with butter
  3. Pour two pancakes from the blender
  4. Cook and serve with the remaining butter

These pancakes are sweet enough that you don’t need syrup.  I think the next time I see some good blueberries in the store, I will try this recipe with blueberries in place of the banana and see how it goes.

Comment and let me know if you like them!

Nutrition, Recipes, Weight Loss

21 Day Fix Breakfast Recipe

I’m in my third week of Portion Fix.  It’s going well, I’ve lost the Christmas weight.  The best part is I feel a lot better.  I think it’s the fact that I am eating a LOT less sugar.  I’ve noticed that my workouts are easier. That in itself will keep me eating this way!

Anyway, I said I would be posting some of my own recipes.  Here’s an easy breakfast recipe that will keep you full all morning.  It’s a veggie omelet.  You need:

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1/2 blue of cheddar cheese

1/2 green of green pepper and tomatoes

1 red of Egg Beaters

  1. Chop green peppers and cherry tomatoes
  2. Spray a medium sized pan with PAM
  3. Saute the peppers and onions until tender
  4. Pour the egg Beaters over the peppers and onions
  5. Cook until Egg Beaters are solidified
  6. Sprinkle cheese over the top of the omelet
  7. Fold over and cook just until cheese melts
  8. Top with salsa if desired and enjoy!

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Recipes , ,

Do a Spartan Race in 2015!

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A new year is a chance to try something new, to challenge yourself, to step up your game. If you are into extreme racing, my friends at Spartan Racing are offering tons of things to make this your best extreme racing year ever.

  • They are introducing the Annual Race Pass.  For one fee you can enter any race, any time and race any heat at no extra charge. Plus you’ll get extra perks when you travel to a race like free bag check, discounts on hotels, rental cars and more.
  • The spectacular Spartan World Championship is slated for October in Lake Tahoe . This year, over $500,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded.
  • The Spartans will be taking A CRUISE March 6-9.  It leaves Miami and heads to the Bahamas for a tropical Spartan Sprint.  There will be $50,000 in prizes. You will get the chance to meet the founder and CEO of Spartan Racing, Joe Desana on the ship and listen to expert speakers as you make your way to the race site. Once there, make new friends at the Spartan Party on the Beach. Then get ready! Your kids can compete in the free kids course and you can test your grit on Spartan Racing’s exclusive island course.
  • 2015 introduces the Spartan podcast. Founder Joe Desana travels the globe to interview leaders in the worlds of publishing, academics, business, athletics and high adventure to uncover the secrets to success in life. Biggest news?  It’s free! All you have to do is sign up to get advice from some pretty heavy hitters.

To get even more information, or to sign up for races, the cruise, podcast or annual pass. go to spartanracemedia.com. Oh and HAPPY NEW YEAR!  I have another race code to give away so you can compete in a Spartan Race for FREE! Leave a comment on this post telling us what Spartan Race activity you are going to challenge yourself with during 2015. One lucky winner will be chosen on January 31.

Plus, here’s a discount code to get you 10% off when you register for your next Spartan Race.  The code is SPARTANBLOGGER.  Have an extreme 2015!

Fitness , ,

Simple Portion Control

Happy 2015! A brand new year is a chance to wipe the slate clean and start again.  A chance to make new goals and a plan to reach them. Do you want to lose weight, become healthier and more fit, challenge yourself with something you need to prepare for? January is a great time to start.

21 day fix

This year my goal is to lose the holiday weight that crept on.  It’s much harder to do now that I am older.  I need a definite portion control plan. For the next three weeks, I’m using Portion Fix to help me cut the junk and eat the right amount of nutrients without overeating. Portion fix is a system to help you cut back on the calories without actually counting calories (which I hate). It used to be part of an exercise program called 21 Day Fix, but you can buy the containers seperately now (Yay!) The concept is simple, it’s just a series of containers that are colored according to the types of food you eat.  Green is for veggies, purple for fruit, red for protein, yellow for carbs, blue for healthy fats like milk and cheese. orange for salad dressings, seeds etc. and teaspoons for oils and nut butters.  You get to eat certain amounts (containers) of each type of food depending on your weight and if you want to lose or maintain your weight.

The very cool and helpful thing I discovered is that Pinterest is filled with recipes using this concept.  If you just search Pinterest with the phrase “21 day fix”  you will find tons of information and recipes.  You can make your own board and pin the recipes that appeal to you.  It makes cooking dinner pretty easy.  I have tried to keep lunch simple by buying some lean meats and canned veggies.  Then I just filled the containers, mixed the meat and veggies so I can microwave them at work and take another container of my favorite fruits. Breakfast is usually a protein shake for me, but you can find a lot of breakfast and lunch recipes, as well as snack ideas on Pinterest too. Here’s a link to follow my board if you’d like to.  I may even try to create a few of my own recipes or change the ones I try.  I’ll keep you posted.

Do you have any 21 Day Fix recipes to share?  Put a link in the comments!

 

Nutrition, personal training, Weight Loss , , ,

How to Lose the Christmas Weight

The hard core holiday party circuit has begun.  I don’t know about you, but I gain more weight that needs to come off between Thanksgiving and New Years than I do any other time of the year. Holidays mean sticky gooey sugar laden simple carbs, special holiday drinks and high calorie casseroles.  You know the drill. I cringe at the trip to the scales.

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So what to do when the parties stop and you want to get back to normal?  My answer to fastest excess weight loss (at least for me) is to cut way back on the simple carbs.

Here are two recipes that you can try for  dinner that could help.  The key is lean protein and vegetables.  Ax the bread, pasta, rice and potatoes, at least for the short term.  Serve meat with vegetables and a salad for dinner.  You will feel satisfied and you will be happier the next time you step on the scales.

Bar-g-q chip baked chicken (this one is my own creation)

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You will need:

1 package of chicken parts

1 bag Cape Cod Chips (the 40% less fat version)

2 Tbsp bar-b-q powdered seasoning (I used Hartley’s bar-b-q seaoning)

One cup fat free milk

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Skin the chicken parts, set aside
  3. Crush the potato chips. I used a food processor, then finished with my wooden meat tenderizer. Put the chips in a shallow bowl
  4. Add the bar-b-q seasoning to the crushed chips
  5. Coat each chicken part with milk
  6. Roll in the chip mixture and place in a baking dish
  7. Bake the chicken for one hour

Serve the chicken with a romaine lettuce salad and a fresh or frozen vegetable of your choice.

Grilled Marinated Steak (get more great recipes like this at eDiets.com)

You will need: (per person)steak

3 oz of sirloin beef

3 tsp of balsamic vinegar

1 clove garlic

2 tsp oregano

1/4 tsp black pepper

1 tsp onion powder

1 1/2 tsp of olive oil

  1. Mince garlic
  2. Combine vinegar, olive oil, oregano, onion powder, black pepper and garlic in a shallow pie plate or dish
  3. Add steak and marinate, refridgerated, for about 30 minutes, turning meat once
  4. Preheat grill or broiler and cook steak on highest oven rack for 4-6 minutes
  5. Turn, brush with remaining marinade an grill 3 to 4 minutes
  6. Serve with your favorite fresh salad with a clear dressing

Do you have any suggestions for dropping the Christmas weight?  Please share!

 

Fitness, Weight Loss ,

How Can I Work Out When I’m So Busy?

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Whew!  The weeks between Christmas and New Years are killer on my workout routine.  It’s tough to squeeze in workouts between shopping and making gifts, family get-togethers, parties with friends, work obligations, travelling, concerts, plays and volunteering. (That exhausted me just rereading all that stuff!)  It would be so easy to just scrap it till after the New Year.

BUT this is when I need my workouts most.  All this extra activity means added stress, not to mention extra calorie intake. So.. here’s the plan.  I’ll need to chunk my workouts. I may need to squeeze it in at 15 minute increments throughout the day. I may need to do a mini workout during my plan period at school.

Here’s just one example:  I usually do a strength workout 2 times per week.  It lasts about 40 minutes.  I do a 5-10 minute warm-up.  That’s followed by three sets of 2 strength moves, then 3 sets of two new moves, then 3 sets of a third pair of moves. I finish up with 8 minutes on the stationary bike and about a 5-10 minute cool down.

On these busy days that same workout may look more like this:  A 2 minute warm-up first thing in the morning, 3 sets of 2 strength moves, a quick stretch and I’m off to work.  During plan period at school, I squeeze in another quick warm-up and 3 more sets of two new moves, cool down, then get ready for my next class.  Then after work, I get the third set in, take the dog for a quick walk around the block and cool down with some stretches before we head out to a Christmas party.

If you need some ideas on squeezing your workouts in during these busy times, check out these 15 minute workouts.  Pick the one(s) that suit you best.  Want to work out around the commercials during all those Hallmark Channel Christmas movies?  Try these 30 second commercial length workouts.

Thanks Tony Horton!

Have some good ideas for working out during busy times?  Please share!

Exercise, Fitness, quick workouts

How To Vary Your Workout

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Are you getting everything into your workout that you need? Did you know that to be healthy you need to do cardio, strength training and flexibility?  You have to mix it up. it keeps your heart, lungs and muscles strong and flexible.  You need it all.

I recently finished a round of PiYo.  It’s a program I really like, but I do need to change it up after 8 weeks.  Here’s a sample of my weekly schedule.  I try to cover, cardio, strength,  and flexibility.  I have incorporated one day where I can put any workout in that I would like.  Trying something new each week keeps me motivated to keep working out.

Monday:  PiYo workout (strength, flexibility, cardio)

Tuesday:  Strength workout, concentrating on back  (there are a lot of push-ups in PiYo) and legs.

Wednesday:  Elliptical and stationary bike (cardio)

Thursday: Strength workout (a different one from Tuesday focusing on the same muscles)

Friday:  PiYo workout (strength, flexibility, cardio)

Saturday:  This is the day reserved for any new or interesting workout I would like to try.  So far, I’ve tried Turbo Fire Low HIIT 20 and an ACE stability ball workout.  They were both fun and I looked forward to them once I picked them.

Sunday:  Rest day. If I have to skip a different day during the week, I use Sunday as a make-up day.

So within 30 to 45 minutes per day, I can keep my entire body healthy and have a different workout every time I step into my home gym.

How do you vary your workouts?

Exercise, Fitness, Home Gym, personal training ,

PiYo Review

 

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About 10 weeks ago, I started a new home workout program called PiYo. I told myself I would do a review here when I had completed the program so here it is!

The Pros

  1. It starts you out slowly- The first three weeks get you started with lower intensity workouts.  These workouts are the building blocks, strengthening your muscles for the higher intensity workouts that begin to be included in week four. By week five the workouts are more intense, but your body is ready for it.  This cuts down on the muscle soreness which causes you to walk strangely, especially up and down steps!
  2. There are built in modifications- I have been working out consistently for a long time.  If this was my very first workout experience, even the low intensity workouts could have been a challenge.  Chalene Johnson planned for this and has a class member demonstrate modifications for every exercise.  You can follow the modifications until you’re ready for a little more intensity.
  3. No equipment needed-None, zero, nada. Every exercise is done with your own body weight.  This is good news for your bank account.
  4. No/low impact-If you don’t want all the joint jarring jumping in your workout, but still want the intensity, PiYo is it.
  5. Keeps you flexible and well balanced-  If you are getting older (and who isn’t?) these yoga inspired workouts will keep Father Time from robbing you of these two important body qualities.
  6. Fun-I get bored with the same old, same old.  This is something different and challenging.

The Cons

  1. Lack of upper body pulling movements- The upper body exercises have to rely on pushing movements only, mainly because there is no equipment (see pro #3). This can leave you with tight pecs and rounded shoulders.  See my post next week to see how I compensated for this.
  2. A lot of sweating when you are upside down- (downward dog position).  Highly uncomfortable.  Keep a towel handy that you can grab quickly.
  3. Hard to see the instructor when you are upside down-  Make sure you WATCH the Allign video first and then try the exercises. Watching each of the videos before you actually try them would be helpful too.

The really good thing about PiYo is there are live classes all over the country.  If you are not sure you would like this program, go to a local fitness center that offers PiYo classes and try a few.  If you like the live classes, the PiYo basic workout is a great buy.  I got mine for under $50.  I get a discount because I’m a coach, but the regular price is beween $50 and $60.  Once you have it, you can use it forever…or at least until your DVD player breaks down!

Let me know what YOU think of PiYo after you try it.

Exercise, Fitness, Reviews, Strength Training , ,

Fitness Challenge Idea: Charity Challenge

 

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With Thanksgiving and Christmas just around the corner, I was thinking about ways to keep my fitness group motivated during holiday parties and family get-togethers.  At this time of year, I also think about giving a little extra to those charities that are important to me.  This year, I think I have found a way to blend the two together.

I’m calling it the Charity Challenge.  This would be something easy for you to do with any group you might be working with.  Here’s how it works.  We’ll be using the Fitness Challenge Point Tracker we have used in the past to assign points to the workouts we do.  For every 100 points each of us earn, we have pledged to donate one dollar to the charity of our choice.  I am playing for World Vision.  Some of the other Charities that members have chosen are The American Cancer Society, Cradle for Christianity, and Donna’s Good Things.  Some of us have also set point goals to keep us motivated.  We are going to compete in teams, even though we are donating individually.  That will give us some bragging rights at the end of the challenge!

It’s been fun to post our charities on our private Facebook Fitness group.  I’m sure it will be fun to watch the dollars accumulate too.

You could use this idea to do lots of different things.  How about donating a can of food for every 100 points? You could donate mittens or hats to decorate a giving tree.  The possibilities could be endless.  What are your ideas on how to create a Charity Fitness Challenge?

 

 

 

Fitness Challenges ,

Why do YOU Exercise?

When most people start an exercise program, the reason they give is “to lose weight”.  It’s no wonder. Our culture is obsessed with thinness and equates being thin with being happy.

If you ask someone who has made exercise and fitness a part of their lifestyle, you will get a very different answer.  Did you know that money, looks and status contribute to only 10% of our happiness?  (Idea Fitness Journal, “The Skinny on Happiness”)

A long-term exerciser will have other reasons as to why they continue to work out. They feel healthier, more relaxed or less stressed.  They have more energy, more focus, are more productive at work. They can keep up with their kids or grandchildren.  They experience a reduction in chronic pain. They are training for a future fitness event. They have made a new set of friends they enjoy.  And the list can go on.

Here’s just one example of the  reasons I exercise almost every day.  On October 18th, my oldest daughter got married.  We have been planning and preparing for this day for almost a year.  The weekend involved a trip to Pittsburgh for my side of the family.  On Saturday morning, I woke up with an overabundance of energy.  I’m not one to show my excitement on the outside.  It all builds up on the inside.  By 7 a.m. I felt like I was about to jump out of my skin.

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Thank goodness the hotel had a nice size gym.  A half hour on the elliptical and the stationary bike and I was much calmer.  Good thing..as later in the day we were stuck in a traffic jam getting back from hair and make-up and it was touch and go on the decision about an outdoor service.  Thanks to my workout, I was able to stay much calmer and really enjoy such an important day.

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So what are YOUR reasons for working out regularly?  If you  haven’t started yet, why do you want to get started? #notjustweightloss

Exercise, Fitness, Online Fitness coaching, personal training, Weight Loss , , , , , ,