Mindset: Lynn’s Story

I love me a good mindset story.  I really do.  Because I write about fitness, nutrition, movement, and my own journey with that, and sometimes I find myself super aware of other people and THEIR journeys and what is happening for them that they maybe realize, or maybe DON’T realize.  

I think it’s important for you to know that loving yourself, prioritizing yourself, trusting yourself, and realizing YOU ARE ENOUGH are essential to building a healthy mindset.  But I think you have to take baby steps to get to that healthy mindset space in chunks of information that you can manage and receive that make sense for you (yes, I know that sounds weird).  I think lots of things can come out of that journey, perhaps a physical transformation, or maybe just ultimately realizing “I AM ENOUGH” and perhaps feeling the most capable you have ever felt in your entire life.  Each journey is individual and specific.  There isn’t “a way” to do things.  More often, it seems, we learn when we are ready to receive information.

My friend Lynn has made a bit of a physical transformation in the past few months.  Pieces of it I know about and ask about (because I am lucky enough to be a coach with her fitness and nutrition) and pieces of it are her own doing.  Of course, I sometimes ask questions and am nosey and ask about her view on things and “what’s different” with her mindset or her internal dialogue now?  And how did she make that shift?  Lynn has worked with me for some time.  Back in 2013 we did a small nutrition group focused on building a few healthy habits.  She did a great job practicing those habits.  You will hear her talk about this in her interview.  After our time together was over, old things crept back in (you know, life happens, plus old habits die hard).  To be honest, as a coach, this happens sometimes.  And it doesn’t make us “bad people” to take a step or two back sometimes.  Success isn’t usually linear….it shoots up for a bit in a positive direction, then takes a tumble, then confidence is found and gained and it climbs up a few more steps, and then possibly a step backwards, and then climbs again.  This repeats over and over and over.  It’s called learning how to incorporate your habits in LIFE and finding your way back to your habits sometimes.  This is NORMAL.

So Lynn was gracious enough to answer some questions for me (PUBLICLY!!!) and put herself “out there.”

Lynn & Trevor!
Lynn & Trevor!

Want to hear about it?  Read on.

What changed mindset wise between 2013 and now?

When I did the first round of nutrition coaching I was successful –  I lost some weight and got stronger and followed the plan.  Then between 2014 and part of 2015 I just kind of gave up all those guidelines and tools, ate like I was a powerlifter or something, or would say to myself “Well I worked out today so I have to eat to replace and make gains.”  Not true. I knew what to do as far as the nutrition tools went but my heart wasn’t in it. I didn’t follow what had worked before for some reason, I knew what I needed to do but just didn’t do it.

How is your mindset different now?  

There is a major difference in having the tools and knowing what to do with them and actually wanting to do them. This time around I wanted to do them.  I was ready for them in my mind and my heart. I had a physical in May 2015, saw that when I stepped on the scale I gained back everything I lost plus some, and that was it this time.  I was making a change for good, I wasn’t going to just half-ass things this time.  I didn’t feel good about myself and had a shitty attitude towards everything. So I went back to the key habits that I had been given (and practiced) before and this time really focusing on them and taking them seriously. I also started tracking my calorie intake as well. Previously I would just eat and guess on portion size or use that “well I worked out today, so I can have this or I need to eat this way of thinking.”

**Insert from Amanda:  Lynn learned what she was taking in to get her to the place she was.  She created a deficit in her calories (by following some healthy habits she has picked up along the way and using appropriate portion sizes for her activity level) to begin the process of dropping some pounds.  By consistently exercising about 4-5 times per week for 45 minutes (give or take), she created a bit more of a deficit and this has led to a fairly healthy weight loss over the course of a few months.  

Is your home environment supportive of the change?

This last time I came home after my doctor appointment and said to Trevor, “We have to do something. I need your help, do this with me.   We aren’t 20 anymore, we have to change our habits.”  He was noticing changes in weight as well so I thought it would be good to ask him to make changes with me.  Having him do these habits with me and making the change to be healthier makes it so much easier. We support each other and push each other when the other one doesn’t feel like going out for a run/workout or just wants to be lazy and order something that really doesn’t fit in to what we should be doing to keep up our success. I honestly think the support I have from my husband is the major reason I am having so much success this time around.  He was supportive the last nutrition round too, but he wasn’t actually following the habits with me. This time we are both doing them and everything is clicking and making sense.  It’s fun to see that progress each other makes.

**Insert from Amanda: The more you can surround yourself with people who support you and are like minded, the better.  Build yourself a tribe that thinks and acts the same way you do, and that builds you up.

Views on Lynn now vs. Lynn then:

I am kind of embarrassed to write about me then.  Looking back, I had a bad attitude for my workouts, at home, and even at work.  I wasn’t happy with myself, I didn’t care about things, and I was just going through the motions.  I think a lot of that stems back to feeling bad about myself, gaining weight, “working out and not seeing results,” all these totally impacted everything in my life.  Me now: I am much happier, I have more confidence, I am a better wife, and I have a better attitude towards everything (maybe not everything – running on days where it’s hot and humid still makes me a little pissy!).  I enjoy going to my workouts and running and eating food that makes me feel good, unlike previous me where we would eat out all the time and just eat crap and I’d feel gross and bloated with an icky tummy after and then wonder why my workouts weren’t as good as they could have been.

Lynn, WHY are you happier now? Is it because you lost weight? Is it because you shifted your priorities, what?

I am happier now because I got my priorities in line.  I am always so willing to put everyone else first and commit to everything else that I forget to make myself a priority.  Now it’s me first then commit to just a few things, though that’s still a struggle because I want to do everything, help everyone and volunteer for this and that, but I’m working on that.  Losing weight did make me happy but it was in a different mindset this time around.   Before when I would try to lose weight it was for an event or something.  Now it’s for my health and to just feel more confident.  I feel better in my skin, I’m not dressing in all black anymore…. I actually want to go shopping and pick out the bright colors and it’s not just the weight I lost but my workouts have changed the way my body looks.  I never ever would wear tank tops out/to the gym and now I wear them all the time because I have a little gun show going on and it’s awesome, and let’s not forget about those glutes when you squat/deadlift like we do in class.  Of course I’m going to show that off too!

Prioritizing the habits 2013 vs now, what is different?:

I would say there is a big difference in the habits now vs. then. “Then” I was just going about it by haphazardly cooking each day and just trying to hit maybe a few of the habits. Now,  I make sure to plan out our meals 1 to 2 weeks at a time to make sure that we always have protein, veggies and carbs and a little healthy fat. I buy in bulk and also prep for the week’s lunches.

Do you have guidelines? Ones that let you know you need work or that you are straying off your path?:

Sort of.  I go by sleep, mood and how my workouts feel. For example,  if I have been low on protein I can tell that my workouts aren’t as good and I’m hungry and want to eat everything.  Same goes for sleep.  if I don’t get a decent amount of sleep, I’m on the struggle bus the next day.

How do you deal with emotions of guilt, such as food and workout guilt?

Food guilt has gotten better over time, and although it’s a tough one to deal with, I am still working on it, trying not to criticize every little thing I eat. I am much more aware about the food I eat than what I was before.  If there are treats or something in the break room (which happens every week, I have good work moms that like to bake and buy candy!),  my thought process now is do I really need/want that or is it just because everyone else is having it and I feel this pressure to eat it.  Previously  I would just eat everything they brought in and feel like crap after because “oh I shouldn’t have ate that or that’s gonna add some weight.” I’d rather have a treat that means something once in while versus just all the time.  I focus on eating food that is good for me and going to make me feel good (physically and mentally). You shouldn’t ever feel guilty about eating something, if it’s something you love, go and enjoy it!  Practice that in moderation.   Just because I love wine, cupcakes, and chocolate doesn’t mean I should sit down and binge on those things. Eat them in the moment, enjoy them and move on.  Make it for something special, a night out with the girls or a treat with your husband/family. Workout guilt I struggle with because I want to keep seeing the progress I’ve been having so if I miss a workout or skip it because I’m feeling a little lazy, I’ll beat myself up a little about it, but then just know that tomorrow or next work out I’ll move on and have a good workout. I like working out, it’s my time to unwind, and clear my head so doing my workouts is important to me. They are high up on my priority list.  But sometimes you just need to rest,  you can’t be going balls to the wall all time and your body will show you that and you need to listen to it. There is nothing wrong with a light day of just going for a walk because you are still moving and being active and it’s giving your muscles a chance to recover.

Do you love yourself? Why? What do you love the most?

Honestly…yes, but there’s more work to be done.  Old habits die hard and sometimes those icky body shaming mind-games creep back in and I have to work really hard to not let them mess with me. I love myself because of the transformations I’ve made over the last 3ish years.  I’m doing things I never thought I would have – two Tough Mudders, multiple 5ks, crushing goals at the gym and have a whole different attitude that brings out the person I was always meant to be, not one that’s stuck in the trap of body shaming, negativity and an unhealthy lifestyle. I’m not sure what I love most.  I think its’ how strong I’ve become, both physically and mentally. Maybe more so mentally, having a positive outlook on things is really a game changer.  I no longer have the time or will to deal with any form of negativity. As for the physically strong, who doesn’t want to hear their husband say “Thank God you work out so we can lift this heavy ass elliptical up from the basement without an argument.”  Or, you know, I’m 45 pounds away from being able to deadlift my husband’s weight 😉

How are you going to keep practicing self love, whether your physical body changes in the future or not?

I am actually in the middle of a good book on this, on  how to find peace and be at home in your skin.  It’s very eye opening and is helping a lot to keep my current mindset going.  If I can learn and practice those habits in this book I think I will be ok with any changes that come my way. Also I’ll ask for help, if I’m stuck.   I’ll reach out to Amanda or whomever to help me. Also, I don’t want to go back to life the way it was before now, so I have that reminder in the back of my head, that was negative and unhealthy. I want to keep moving forward.

Thank you Lynn for putting yourself “out there” and giving us a little glimpse into how you think.  It is very helpful to learn from your journey!

You guys, this is deep stuff.  Change can be FUN and NEW and SHINY.  But usually the biggest part of the change happens during the struggle.  When you are knee deep in the shittiest part, and you are learning to KEEP GOING and take steps forward.  Those parts are the struggle and NOT FUN, and are oh so easy to give up, but those steps are VITAL for growth and learning and moving forward.

Moral of the story (and I think Lynn might say this too)….keep going through the struggle.  Be relentless at keeping YOU on your priority list.  Find a person (or two, or three, or a whole 5AM lifting class) that is YOUR tribe and that makes YOU better.  Keep taking steps forward.  Those that are successful keep taking step after step after step.  And remember, sometimes those are steps in the wrong direction, but they are still steps and you will learn.  Keep plugging.  You got this.


A Case For More Food: Hello 3000

Yo, if you are reading this little series, you know that I’m eating more food.

And that’s pretty much the story.

I’ll catch you up on the other stuff though, like Cliff’s Notes so you don’t have to cycle back through my blog and wonder what the heck this is all about.

Basically, I’ve been an under-eater for a long, long, long time. Sometimes because I had a diet mindset and was continuously on a diet of some sort.  Other times because I was trying to listen to my body and all that jazz, only because I had a previous diet mindset, I didn’t ACTUALLY know what my body was telling me all the time.

So, insert times of more intense workouts and I started feeling low energy, yuck, sleeping shitty, and NOT wanting to workout (and I love to workout).

So, I started eating more.

And I’ve been continuing to ramp that up “more” while I can maintain a stable weight, feel good, sleep, good AND perform well in the gym (and in life).

I’m saying hello to 3000 calories on workout days right now.  And about 2600 on rest days.  And I think this is still not quite enough.

BUT, I’m going to keep going.

Let me tell you why.

Basically, I’ve in some form or fashion been on a diet whether intentionally (“doing” a diet) or unintentionally (not being able to read signals my body was giving me about adequate food intake) for a long ass time.  I basically down-regulated my body’s ability to perform at a high level, and I’ve taught it to get used to running at half capacity with half fuel (that low-calorie dieting bit).  So, I’m incrementally feeding it more to UN-diet, or to find that sweet spot where it runs on HIGH, moves well, feels good, etc.

I’m still climbing.

My weight dropped another pound.  Which is funny, because don’t we learn that we must eat less to lose weight?

What am I learning then?  That maybe I wasn’t feeding it enough so it didn’t have weight to lose?  Hmmmmmmmmmm.

Look, I’m not saying to lose weight you don’t have to eat less.  But I think I’m beginning to make a case for under-eating and NOT being able to lose weight.  Which might mean making the case for more food for a lot more people.  Even those that feel fluffy and like they eat “bad” and stuff.  My guess is….a lot of those folks might not eat ENOUGH.  Enough calories, enough protein, enough fat, enough carbs.  Plain old ENOUGH.

This is a hard thing to wrap your brain around, but whatevs.

I’m just going to keep plugging away.

If you need me, I’ll be eating :)  About 150 grams of protein, 95 grams of fat, and 385 grams of carbs on workout days.  CARBS.  Because, you know, they’re the devil.  I have photo proof too, like progress pics.  I’m leaning out, and dropping a little poundage SLOW.  I’m just not quite so sure I’m comfortable posting them online yet :)

Body Image: One Lifter’s View

If you have some icky body image demons, you might get some hope from my post.  Or you might not be ready to hear what I have to say…..yet.

“I just want to tone up, I don’t want to lift heavy weight because I’m afraid I will get bulky.”


As a lover of lifting and moving heavy pieces of iron, or simply my own bodyweight, this statement jacks me the eff up.

And I’m annoyed that it jacks me up because I also used to say such things.

And because I’m annoyed that I used to say those things…..I’m now doubly annoyed.

As you can see, we are probably going nowhere with this post.  :)

As a weightlifter, I LOVE the feeling that moving a bunch of heavy things gives me.  I absolutely love it.  It reminds me how capable I am.  How strong I am.  How I can do things and not think about them because I train my strength.  It makes me wonder how much things weigh so I can compare them to what I deadlift.  I regularly wonder if I could lay things flat across my back like a barbell, could I squat them?  And many times when I’m struggling to move a heavy load, I’m learning a lesson.  And then when I find myself in life outside the gym, and struggling, I remember that I have to move through the struggle, and stop avoiding it,  and that I CAN.

Those things all sound fabulous and sound like I have life by the balls and everything is rosy and I love myself and my body and blah, blah, blah unicorns.

Except, if you know me, you know that body image has been an issue for me in the past.  And even though I love myself, that doesn’t mean that every day feels magical and that I don’t have icky body image thoughts along the way.

And, dare I say it, developing a love of moving heavy stuff has brought out many of those old insecurities and body image demons.  Because when you lift, you get muscles.  Muscles are GREAT!  Building muscle is really just a physical reflection of alllllllll that hard work you are doing in the gym.

But if you squat a few times a week, deadlift lots, and do a bunch of other strength-y things like pressing and pull-ups, you might just develop some quads.  And those quads may not fit into your favorite jeans so well (if at all).  And those shoulders that you have been working so hard on…..well, it is probably time to say goodbye to those cute fitted sleeve shirts.  Because you will rip those to shreds if you wear them.  And while I now think these things are GREAT and FUNNY and I joke about them, those things caused me some SERIOUS body image ickies for quite some time.

Because when you begin to put on clothes that might feel tight, alllllllll those feelings of “you’re getting fat” or the panic of having to buy a different size, even if it is just ONE body part that doesn’t fit (the usual culprits for weightlifters are quads, ass and shoulders), well….that comes with some mental baggage that you might need to deal with if you have ever had the body image ickies.  And the sooner you begin to deal with those icky thoughts, the better off you are (in my opinion).

The thing is, for me….I don’t want to sacrifice the feelings I get and alllllll the mental and physical benefits lifting has given me for some pair of jeans that don’t quite fit my effing fabulous quads anymore.   I’m not willing to trade Big Confidence and Big Self Love for small jeans.   It is not worth it to me to run as fast as I can into the next 12 week diet where I cut my food intake (and probably tank my lifting ability) just to see my high school skinny jeans (that are no longer in style anyway) fit again.  When I see my reflection in the mirror, I love THIS me.  And I spend a fair amount of time in front of mirrors these days flexing.  More than a fair amount.  In fact, my husband really doesn’t bat an eye at it anymore.


I don’t expect my muscles to get much bigger unless I decide to take on some crazy mass building plan, but who knows, maybe I will turn green and into The Hulk by Christmas.  I also know that I’m not turning around and getting off this path either, I love it too much, and it has led me through a bunch of crazy dark places and times that were NOT healthy, and I’ve found my way into a place that I love with a body that I love.

So, for me…..it makes sense to ditch the jeans that I wasn’t so absolutely in love with anyway for another pair that fits my quads better.  And I’m ok with that.  Now.  That took me a bit to embrace though.  And actually, I’m better than ok with that now, I’m actually pretty jazzed about it.  But I say that because if you struggle with body image AND you are lifting and growing fabulous quads, I want you to know that it is ok for you too.  And even if you don’t feel amazing about it right now, you have to lean into this little struggle and find your way (which might not be the same as mine, and that’s ok too).

I have a bunch of pairs of super cute jeans that I can’t wear.  And not because I’m “too fat” or “too big”  or “too bulky.”  But because my body composition has very much moved around a bit and things get bigger here and there, and looser here and there.  But I also look at those cute jeans and think “I wasn’t an RKC when I was wearing those jeans.  I wasn’t able to pick up and carry my 30 pounds toddler around on my back very easy then.  And I also didn’t have traps like I do know when I was wearing them either.”  So really, is it the end of the world that I’ve given them to a fabulous recipient that might just be on her own journey of building fabulous quads too?  Nope, it’s not.  Not in my book.

Just because your quads have gotten bigger, and don’t fit into your jeans….that doesn’t make you a failure or a bad person, you know?  It just means you have effing amazing quads, and you might need to jeans to match them.  That’s it.  It doesn’t have to mean a ton of mental body image icky mind games.  There is a good chance you might get bigger quads while you are getting pretty dang lean.  Your shoulders might get bigger too.  And you might wonder if your ass crack will ever fit in normal jeans again or if you are destined to higher waisted pants (the answer is probably saying no to low-rise jeans if you are a lifter because crack is whack).

My advice for you would be to lean in to the struggle (thanks Brene Brown!), and maybe stop making up stories about getting bulky and choose to tell yourself how freaking good you look.

And remember, if jeans are causing you this much heartache with your new and fabulous weightlifter quads, there’s always leggings!





Dear TM: I Know What To Do But Don’t

As a personal trainer and nutrition coach, I hear the following statement often:

I KNOW what to do, I just don’t do it.  I KNOW I need to eat more veggies, I just don’t.  I KNOW I should work out, but I find myself skipping it each day.

This is sometimes accompanied by statements that may or may not be talking down to ones self about NOT doing the thing they want to do, or beating themselves up about it.  Such as:

I KNOW I should work out in the morning before work so I don’t skip it later in the day….but I’m too lazy.  So I don’t.

So, in these cases, there are one to two things happening that immediately leap out at me.

The first one is KNOWING but lacking the DOING.  Many of us (me!!) know what changes we’d like to make, but we get stuck there.  We spend a lot of time learning how to make changes and spend a lot of energy looking at the changes that would serve us…..and then get trapped in that spot.  We miss the next piece which is taking an action.

The second one can happen to the best of us – feeling defeated about NOT doing something, and talking down to ourselves.

So, here are some things I think about in these instances.

Often times, yes, we KNOW what to do.  We know we should eat vegetables and we know we should workout a few times  a week.  We just don’t.  Often times, in my experience, we don’t DO because we try to tackle TOO MUCH.  We have all these things we know we SHOULD do, and it is easy to get overwhelmed and not do anything, because it feels easier to say that we will do it tomorrow.  Which leads to tomorrow, and possibly saying tomorrow that we will do it TOMORROW.  It just gets really easy at putting off things into the future because taking on them ALL seems overwhelming.

Here is how I might approach this one (and I do approach things like this in my own life.  I also recommend things like this to my clients).  Pick ONE small thing to tackle.  For instance, let’s say you want to incorporate vegetables into your life.  Instead of going all in and all “I’m going to eat 9 servings of organic, free range, gluten-free, hormone free, non-GMO, grass-fed veggies every damn day,”……..(I kid, but the way people describe their food sometimes just gets me)….try committing to JUST eating a serving of vegetables for dinner each night this week.  And, if that feels like too dang much, maybe commit to eating a serving of veggies on Monday, Wednesdays and Thursday if that feels more possible.  Make sense?  Pick something small that you KNOW you can nail.  You don’t have to commit to going all in, and in fact, in my experience….trying to go all in from the get-go often leads to feeling overwhelmed.  Do JUST ENOUGH that it is a tiny stretch, but you KNOW you can nail it.  Capisce?  This is an important step because it is moving you from KNOWING to DOING.

Now let’s address the second instance from above – feeling defeated from NOT doing what we set out to do, and the possibility of talking down to ourselves.

First things first, you aren’t a bad person, a criminal, or a deadbeat if you missed a veggie serving on Thursday night this week.  In the big picture, does that half a cup of peas matter?  Maybe not so much.  BUT, these veggies, they still are important to you.  So here is how I try to look at it when I miss sometimes:

1) Why was I unable to complete my action?  Most often, it’s because I didn’t plan so well.  And I can see that having a plan for those veggies is the key to actually EATING them.  So, I learned here.  I just need to plan a little better next week.

2) Or, maybe….life just happened, and you were caught late at work so grabbed the best choice you could make with the options you were given, and called it good.  In THAT case, you really just need to decide that some things are out of your control, and life happened.

There might be more things to consider here, but most importantly, instead of feeling defeated, it is important to LEARN the WHY.

Which leads to the last thing – the potential talking down to ourselves if we don’t complete something we set out to.

Calling yourself lazy or unproductive or a failure or WHATEVER for NOT DOING something sometimes isn’t really going to help you.  Actually, it will do the opposite – it will probably lay a thick slab of guilt in your conscience.  Guilt in these cased doesn’t do a whole lot of good.  It is easy to get stuck in the cycle of feeling guilt, then making choices to make the guilt feelings go away, which generally aren’t super productive, and then we get trapped in a cycle like that.  You need to decide that you did your best, you learned, and that you are moving on.  Telling yourself “Hey you lazy slug, you skipped your veggies last night, OMG YOU ARE SO WORTHLESS” isn’t the answer and it will not help ANYTHING.  Instead, something like “Hey, I missed my veggies today, maybe I’ll take 5 minutes right now and chop some fresh ones up and put them in single serving baggies so I have some choices tomorrow”….well, go on with your bad self, getting all prepared for tomorrow by taking ACTION.  That tiny little action probably just netted you some confidence for tomorrow!

Here is the Cliff’s Notes version:  choose a SMALL change that you KNOW you can nail.  Do JUST that for a bit.  When its comfortable, bite off another small change and chew that one til it’s comfortable.  Rinse and repeat.

Oh, and ditch the guilt cycle.  Choose action over guilt.

A little self-compassion never hurt anyone either 😉


A Case For More Food: Holy Calories Batman

I should rename this series “Amanda Eats The Food.”

As you know, I’ve been trying to stay very weight stable for a while, but continue to push my energy intake (calories) UP to a point where I’m actually taking in what I burn, while keeping a stable weight.  I wouldn’t consider myself a highly active person.  These days, I’m hitting a 45 minute workout 3-4 times per week, primarily focusing on strength/volume.  Other than that, about 2-3 days of my week, because of my job, make me pretty active, and the remainder of the week I try to move throughout the day and take easy walks here and there, play with my kid, etc……but that probably isn’t the definition of super active.  And some days (usually Sundays), I like to be a total slug and be lazy, and I love it, and I don’t feel guilty :).

Here is why I’m doing this:  I have a LONG HISTORY of diet mindsets.  My brain seems to get confused by what kind of food intake is “enough” and what is not and how not to feel guilty about the “enough” part.  Which has totally gotten better, but it also has left me with things to work on.  Right now, I want my body to be able to handle life.  To do this, I need to continuously fill up my cup each day by eating enough, taking time for self-care and enjoyment, SLEEPING, daily movement (don’t read that as structured workouts and beast mode), and managing stress.  If you think about it, the holes or leaks in my cups each day/week are normal life stress, not enough sleep, workouts (they ARE a stressor and you do need to manage them) potential undereating, etc.  Make sense?  I am trying to give my body WHAT IT NEEDS to thrive.  Not survive.

So, I was feeling sassy a few weeks ago, and upgraded my Fitbit Flex to a Fitbit Charge HR.  Basically, I wanted something that told me a more accurate picture of what kind of energy I need to eat each day.  The Flex is great, but because it doesn’t attach to your heart rate throughout the day, the energy expenditure (calorie count) from the Flex is likely a bit low.  I don’t actually care how many calories I burn during workouts – those things are sort of easy to calculate – 45 minutes for a person my size is probably 300-500 calories.  Boom.  BUT……those other 23 hours and 15 minutes every day, what does THAT burn.

Holy bananas, it burns quite a bit it turns out.  On workout days (which tend to be the same as my higher activity job days), I’m burning about 3300-3600 calories every day just by doing LIFE.  Theoretically (obviously all this has that slight margin of error from estimations and stuff), I need to eat 3300-3600 calories on those workout and high activity days just to maintain my weight.

Except, I’m not.  I’ve been eating closer to 2700 calories.  But my weight has stayed stable.  This doesn’t make sense, right?  If I expend more than I eat, I should lose weight.  Except I’m not.  Could be a variety of things – maybe my tracking sucks.  Maybe my Fitbit sucks.  Maybe a combo of both.  Maybe I ate a lot of sodium for a few days so I’m bloated.

Or, maybe, just maybe…….I’m really effing efficient at processing 2700 calories and so my body isn’t running at full capacity.  And maybe that’s why I have been waking up in the middle of the night unable to sleep sometimes, or feeling restless during sleep.  Or maybe that’s why my cycle has been a little odd for a few months.  Or maybe that’s why I’ve been feeling lazy, like I literally don’t want to go for walks and play too much.  I’m tired (from not sleeping as well, and from not having enough energy).

You guys, I don’t have the answer.  I just have a bunch of guesses, and I just have myself to experiment on.  I’m in #labrat status right now.

But I will tell you something weird.

Over the past few days I’ve increased my calories up about 100 (that whole increase is all coming from carbs by the way, I’m getting enough protein and fat already).  I literally have had bowls of cheerios before bed the past week because I was hungry, and because I was trying to eat more.  BEFORE BED!!  When every guru on the blocks says don’t eat after 6PM or whatever, and especially not carbs because you will get fat.  And the Paleo people will tell me I’m about to get diabeetus from the grains and carbs, and I’m going to die soon because OMG gluten (PS – if you really DO have gluten issues, don’t eat gluten).

I lost two pounds.  Two effing pounds.  From eating more food.  I have no idea where they went, but they are gone.  And I didn’t try to lose them.  In fact, when I was eating a hair less, my weight was stable every damn day.  So why the drop when I was eating MORE?  And I feel this is important to note as well, my workouts have felt pretty great this week.  Even during “that” week of the month when I’m normally tired.

This doesn’t make sense, does it?  From every diet guru on the interwebz claiming just eat less and move more.  Eff that noise.

So, I’ll tell you what I’m going to do.  I’m gonna push up to about 2900 calories on those workout/high activity days (and push up my non workout days as well by about 100 calories all in the form of carbs).  I’ll let you know what happens, maybe I’ll turn into an oompa loompa, or maybe I’ll stay weight stable.  Who knows.

Just so you can see, here is a screen shot of what my Monday looked like – a high activity work day PLUS a workout day.


Over time I’m trying to increase my food intake to match my output (that 3,432 calories burned number).  I could do it all in one swoop, but I suspect even though it sounds like a dream to eat “all the food”……well, going from 0 to 60 overnight could come with a tummy ache and some bloating.  And probably some mind games as well.  Like I’ve been saying, I’m trying to stay weight stable.  So it has to be a bit of a gentle process.  Literally, I’m doing the opposite of dieting.

And here’s how I feel about it:

IMG_0659My muscles are coming along nicely – I have a nice “meat shelf” on my back to rest my barbell on for squats.  And my muscles wink at the people walking behind me.  And the smile is LEGIT body love.

Here is what I’m hoping to accomplish from all this jazz – I WANT to know what I SHOULD eat to rock my life, and so I’m teaching myself that very thing right now.  Which is why I’m doing the pain in the ass job of tracking calories.  I DON’T want to track calories.  But I also have trouble when I don’t track because I don’t know what hungry and full always feels like because of a weird and shady diet mindset.  I’m LEARNING this all over again.  I’m also learning that I should never ever feel guilty for feeding myself more when I’m hungry, or having high activity days or whatever.  This is literally food freedom.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not just throwing Cheetos down my throat to get this done, but I AM making sure I’m eating enough calories, paying attention to getting plenty of whole foods, and that leaves room for all those other fun things!  Literally, moderation.

*I’m not saying YOU should do what I’m doing, I’m simply running a little experiment on myself.  If you decide to do something like this, please consult a professional in the form of a certified nutrition coach for basic strategies or a Registered Dietitian for specific nutrition advice and meal plans.  Please don’t consult your local “health coach” that sells a line of supplements on how to eat to fuel your awesome life because you will likely leave underfed, and with a lot less money in your wallet from buying their shitty products.  Oh, and you will probably have a lot of baggage to deal with down the road.  And one more thing…if you really DO have some serious eating disorders happening, please consult a professional who is credentialed to help you address those things as well.  Eating disorders are FOR REAL and you should get the very best care that you are able.*


Review: Original Strength Press Reset Workshop

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to attend the Original Strength Press Reset workshop.  I was SO PUMPED about being able to participate in this workshop!  I’ve read some of the Original Strength books in the past, and had some of the resets programmed into my RKC training this spring.  I have also incorporated resets from time to time during the day or as warm-ups/cool-downs for my own workouts.  However, I learn in depth information best  hands on, and attending an eight hour workshop where I was taught how to go through these resets correctly, and learn regressions and progressions and how they might apply to my training (and life!!) and others….well not gonna lie, I get jazz hands about stuff like that.

The Co-Founders of Original Strength are Tim Anderson and Geoff Neupert.  Which is ALSO fascinating to me because they are both kettlebell guys (and you KNOW how much I dig my ‘bells).  And they were also folks who were sick of feeling beat up from their training.  In fact, one of the first things we learned at the workshop was that one day Tim Anderson prayed to God for a way for him to no longer feel like he had a broken body, and through a variety of ways, this prayer was answered, and the OS system was born.

Basically, OS is a system designed for us to get our reflexive strength “turned on.”  We are born with reflexive strength – everyone is…..it’s not something that you are lucky to get by having a body that moves well, or even if you are “naturally athletic.”  Everyone is born with reflexive strength.  Reflexive strength is basically how your body controls your movement – how your brain knows how to signal your feet to walk, how you prepare yourself to get out of a chair or up from the floor, how to anticipate a fall if you trip (you know, your body just reacts naturally).  The problem with being born with it….and then all the stuff that happened to you in your life between birth and NOW – like sitting at your desk job 8+ hours a day for 15 years, that nasty spill you took that caused you to jam your shoulder way back when, or beating yourself into a pulp in the gym without regard to how your body is actually FEELING and MOVING….all those things add up.  And, they can potentially cause your reflexive strength (or some parts of it) to turn off a bit.  And without it, you might notice you have “normal aches and pains.”  Or, that ankle doesn’t really move so well.  Or, you might watch yourself move once in the mirror and realize it’s a little like Frankenstein – a little jerky and not so graceful and pretty.  Because your body has learned how to get stability from other sources that possibly weren’t intended to provide that stability (and you learn not as pretty movement patterns).

The OS system helps you turn your reflexive strength back on by using diaphragmatic breathing (belly breathing versus chest breathing), activating your Vestibular system (the system that works a lot of things at once in your body to keep you balanced and upright in gravity), and helps you engage cross body patterns and midline crossing movements (walking by swinging your right arm and left leg at the same time, or basically teaching right and left brain to talk to each other).

So, anyway, we basically started our workshop by testing a movement that we do frequently.  I chose goblet squats because I do them often, and I know how I feel when I do them.  I tested like 4-5, and they felt like my normal goblet squats.

So, we began learning the breathing resets.  We all laid down on the floor and practiced 10 breaths by using our diaphragm and not our belly.  Then tested our movement again (goblet squats).  Uh, mine felt BETTER.  Like, they were smoother, and that weird right knee didn’t feel like it had to move out as much anymore.  Just from “turning on” my inner core.  We then spent another hour or so testing different types of positions (regressions and progressions) to do our breathing resets.  It was very interesting.  The ones that tested well for me (the ones that improved my goblet squats) were ones that had my arms above my head where I was a bit more stretched out.  Which was exactly opposite of the person working next to me….those positions made her tested movement WORSE.   So, it is very specific to YOUR body, and there isn’t “a way that is best” or cookie cutter approach to anyone.

After breathing resets we moved to neck nods and head control.  Basically doing nods in various positions like the breathing resets, and then testing which positions made us move/feel better.  Our instructors were very clear that the resets should not cause tension or pain or feeling uncomfortable while doing them, they should feel easy.  If we felt any tension/pain or anything “off” that reset was not a good fit for us at this time.  As you can imagine, all of us had different resets that were good for us and some that we weren’t quite ready for.  I have to say, I have some weird shoulder things on my right side.  I don’t have pain in my right shoulder (although it wasn’t “right” for awhile doing some pressing movements).  However, as a right hand-er, one would think my right side would be my strongest side, and that just isn’t the case.  Once we started doing the neck nods and looking back over our shoulder to turn on our lats….I felt like right side “turn on” like woah.  In fact, it was working so hard for a bit I almost thought I might cramp my lat up, and I got that special little shaky feeling when a muscle is working/has worked very hard.  I can see this reset being important for me when warming up for overhead pressing and get-ups, and also possibly incorporating them in between sets.

After nods and head control, we moved onto rolling resets.  Basically, rolling “ties the X together” or tying opposite shoulder to opposite hip.  This helps us handle rotational force.  Coolest thing here – your eyes lead everything.  Basically, you LOOK first, then your head moves, and because your head is heavy (all those brains in there!!), your body follows.  We learned some cool rolls, but again, always testing and re-testing against our chosen movement (goblet squats for me).

I’m going to take a bit of a diversion here away from resets and let you learn a secret.  Goblet squats were my chosen movement because they make me feel safe.  That big kettlebell acts as a counter balance so I don’t feel like I’m going to tip over when I’m sitting down in the bottom of my squat.  I chose NOT to test regular bodyweight squats because I’ve never been awesome at them.  Is my form great?  Yes, but my depth in bodyweight squats is always weird because I don’t have STABILITY.  And by this point, I threw the kettlebell to the side and started testing bodyweight squats and was hitting crazy depth with no problem, and they were smoooooooth too.  I was actually sorta impressed, one of the instructors noticed too, and said “those are looking pretty awesome.”  Hell yes!!  I was turning my reflexive strength back ON!! 

Back to the review.  Rocking positions were next.  What do you do when a baby is upset?  You rock it :).  Of COURSE rocking is a reset.  Other than it being calming/soothing, rocking is important because the vestibular system is again activated because the head is UP.  We kept testing reset variations, and foot positions again our baseline movement (now the pretty awesome feeling bodyweight squat).  There were a few that my body didn’t really like so much, so those resets aren’t for me right now.  Maybe they will be someday.  Lego rocking and one legged rocking actually kind of work for me (and might fit nicely in between deadlifts and squats or even single leg work).

After rocking we moved into crawling.  Baby crawling.  The backwards baby crawling (side note, 3 minutes straight of backwards baby crawling had my shoulders and triceps fired up like WOAH!!).  Not everyone can crawl like a baby!  Some folks have trouble working left leg/right arm together and vice versa.  So, there are plenty of regressions (and progressions) from baby crawling.  Baby crawling turned my newly developing bodyweight squats into hands overhead bodyweight squats :)  So I think I might be doing some baby crawling in the future (and maybe incorporating it into a game with my daughter).  Lateral crawling had my brain all tied up and not knowing which direction was up.  But I can see this being important for me as well, since I spend a lot of time in one plane of motion when I train.

Crawling is basically mastering the gait so you can walk, skip, run, sprint.  We did some of those as well.  They were actually pretty fun.

All in all, I had fun at this workshop, and learned so much it’s insane.  And it’s SIMPLE and makes sense.  I have to say, though, that I like a defined set of exercises – IE tell me to do 3 sets of 10, and I’m golden.  This system will have to help me get away from that as I learned how to test resets and movements that make ME better, not just make me move for a prescribed rep count.  I’m excited to share this with my clients as well.  I can see a huge benefit of using the resets as part of warm-up, cool-down and actually I can see a ton of value programming resets between different exercises during classes.  I think people might be surprised by how much benefit they get out of something that seems so simple.

This system is NOT magic.  You are using the resets to turn all of your reflexive strength back on.  For some, this might happen pretty quickly, and for others….this might take a while if they have been beat up, you know?  But there are very simple things that you can do DAILY to feel great and move great.  After doing resets all day, my body felt pretty amazing.  I can see this becoming built in my normal day somehow, or just taking 5 minutes each day to do resets.  I can seriously see this is being a part of a self-care habit.  And the resets are gentle, and can be modified HOWEVER you need to modify.  Even if you can’t get on the floor, you can do a reset, you just have to get creative.  So amazing.

Give the books a whirl if you want an interesting read.  They are pretty easy to understand, even if you don’t interested/have knowledge in anatomy.  Or just hit a workshop.  Or, give me a shout :)




Meal Prep: Tacos Fix A Lot

Yikes!  I think I missed a week in the meal prep posts!!  I just looked through my foodie pics, and there is quite a gap here, so I’ll try to remember what we all had.

There are two basic themes in this post, so let’s start there:

  1. I have been trying to do some “make ahead/freeze and grab and go” meals for both myself and my husband in the morning for breakfast so we know we are getting a good dose of protein PLUS it is super quick to reheat/make.
  2. Tacos fix a lot of things and make shiz easy in the meal planning department.

So, let’s address theme one first – make ahead meals/breakfasts.

IMG_0514This was a pretty tasty turkey sausage and hashbrown egg bake.  Pretty much the recipe is brown two pounds turkey sausage (we used a spicy variety).  Add it to the bottom of a greased 9 x 13 pan.  Layer on an entire bag of frozen hashbrowns (like 24oz bag).  Then, mix together 8 eggs, 2 cups milk, 2 cups cheese, and one smaller carton of egg whites.  Season with salt and pepper, and pour over the hashbrown/sausage mixture.  Bake at 375 until done.

**This was GOOD, but I was trying to not go crazy on fat in this recipe.  And it was actually a little under what I like in the fat department.  So if I were you, here is what I’d change…..I would use one pound spicy turkey sausage and one pound spicy pork sausage for the meat mixture.  It will likely jazz it up quite nicely for you.  Oh, and you can brown the hashbrowns before you add them to the pan if you want….it just takes extra time (but would be worth it in my opinion).  Oh, and I’m sharing this with someone who doesn’t enjoy veggies much, so I didn’t add my usual staples like peppers, onions, or maybe even asparagus.  Those would all be tasty in here too!**

I ate this twice for breakfast – once alongside a pile of asparagus and tomatoes and once with peppers and onions poured over the top with fruit on the side.


Make ahead breakfast sandwiches!  I stole this idea from a couple of people that are in my habits group.  Basically, toast a whole package of whole grain english muffins.  Make the same amount of eggs as you have muffins.  Add two ounces of sliced ham and a slice of cheese.  Put the sandwiches together, and wrap in tin foil and store in the freezer.  My hubs has been taking them out the night before and leaving them in the fridge and then tossing them in the oven at 350 for a half-ish hour while he does his morning routine before bringing them with to work.  They are yum!  This sandwich is perfect for me with a side or two….and men might need to eat two!

IMG_0507Final make ahead breakfast…..blueberry yogurt pancakes!  OMG, pretty tasty (but just a hair low in the protein department for me so I have to add a bit).

Basically, the recipe for these is……mix 2 cups plain Greek yogurt (use 2% or full fat if you want your recipe to have a little staying power), 1 cup milk (and if you use Fairlife, you get a little extra boost of protein), 2 cups white or wheat flour and 1 egg until incorporated.  Then fold in a cup or two of blueberries.  Then make them how you’d make regular pancakes.  This made about 10 pancakes, or 5 servings.  I just stored them in tupperware, and take out two when I want them and reheat.  Pretty yum!

OK, next theme – tacos fix a lot of things :)


Seriously.  When all else fails, make like 2-3 pounds of taco meat and you are golden.  I had this meal about 3-4 times in two weeks.  I also had “taco eggs” which is just taco fixings scrambled with eggs and salsa over the top.  I heart tacos.  They are just so yum.  So I think tacos might be the easiest thing ever to make a lot of.  And I don’t know anyone that doesn’t like them :)

Alright, then here are some “fill-ins” of things we ate during the past two weeks that aren’t super crazy recipes….but are pretty typical of food around our house:

IMG_0432BBQ chicken salad (I made a huge batch of chicken breast tenders on the grill one day, and this was just a few of them mixed lightly with BBQ sauce and reheated).  Also on the salad – a pile of romaine, red onion, croutons, corn, a little shredded cheese, and mushrooms.  Probably ended topping it with Marzetti’s light ranch.

IMG_0513Made ahead of time grilled chicken, french fries (except they are baked and just cut to look like fries), and a huge ass tomato on the side.

IMG_0571Beef roast with mushrooms and sugar snap peas and mashed potatoes on the side.  So yum!  But see next picture to see how it was even MORE yum…..

IMG_0575Beef roast and onions over fried eggs.  Oh, and that big white thing on the side?  Leftover mashed potatoes fried into a pancake.  With a tablespoon of leftover jalapeno popper dip on top from a party :)  This breakfast did NOT suck :)

IMG_0454And this salad is like everything but the kitchen sink because I was HANGRY and running low on protein that day.  So it’s typical salad ingredients PLUS a diced apple.  And a “bomb” of protein which is basically an entire can of tuna mixed with cottage cheese and ranch seasoning.  Sounds gross, but is YUM!  Oh, and peanut butter toast on the side.

**MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION YOU MAY HAVE EVER BEEN ASKED…….is it a MUST to make sure that peanut butter is spread way out to the corners?  Because I’m getting into #toastwars on Instagram (follow me!) about how to spread the topping!


Rant Warning: Assess This

Yeah………….I get a little jacked up about the old BMI topic.

I got a little jacked up again today.  I read THIS ARTICLE by The New York Times.  

Super interesting.

I don’t understand the point of assessing everyone by BMI if we don’t assess individual habits/behavior/lifestyle.  Like, you can go to the doctor’s office and find out your are obese only to be told that you need to lose weight, potentially without guidance of how to lose weight (safely, effectively, sustainably).  Or, you can go online and calculate your own BMI and find out it is in the “healthy” range, only, in the back of your head, you know something is going on because you can’t sleep through the night without waking up stressed to the max about a 100 different things happening in your life right now and can’t imagine waking up on Monday morning with dread because you are going to a job that you loathe.

I mean, what if I’m a healthy BMI but live off diet coke and Marlboros? Will I cost less to my insurer even if my BMI is on point?

Or what if BMI says “Yo, you’re obese,” and I have the healthiest relationship to food or exercise that I have ever had, and manage stress well and sleep at night?

Or what if BMI says healthy and I eat well, sleep well, move well?

Or what if BMI says “Yo, you’re obese,” and I don’t care about the fact that I’m obese?

This assessment doesn’t make any sense to me, because it measures weight against height and that’s it, but it is the end all be all assessment because it is the easiest to measure.  It doesn’t measure if I’m happy, depressed, successful, miserably performing at my job because I hate it, have piles of credit card debt from shopping because instead of eating my feelings, I’m shopping them, or if I just gave birth to my daughter and I decided that I will not let her have a mommy who doesn’t love herself so she learns to love herself so she can raise a daughter who loves HER self.

What if instead of lumping us into groups of healthy, overweight, semi-obese (or whatever it is), and obese….we measured by 1) eats appropriately 2) moves often 3) takes steps to maintain life balance and 4) likes the person that they are?  And if the measurements are off, how about a little guidance on who to take steps to get to that point so when we assess AGAIN in the future, there is a change in a positive direction instead of just assessing for the sake of assessing.

I don’t enjoy measurements for the sake of taking measurements. Obviously.  And it doesn’t end with BMI :)

Do you?

A Case For More Food: Update And Increase!

Here is a brief update from my initial post – A Case For More Food: My Story (so far)…..

Really, here is what I want you to know.  I LOVE my eating habits.  Because of my “diet mindset” history and always focusing on less versus more or expansion, I have trouble “getting enough” in the food department.  That is literally the basis of this whole little science experiment.  I don’t *want* to NOT be awesome in the gym and in the food department, I just don’t always know how to listen yet to the right signals my body is giving me….because I ignored them for so many years.   So, I have been experimenting with actually counting calories, and not so much focusing on the calorie number (although this is where alllll the other things I do keep an eye on point to), but rather I tend to focus on the macro nutrients that support that overall calorie number.

(and, I’ll be bold….I don’t think I’m alone in this little game)

Anyways….I believe it’s been about a week and a half since I posted last.  Here is BASICALLY the gist of what I’m doing.  I’m trying to get a decent amount of protein in (roughly .7 grams per pound of my body weight).  I’m trying to get 80-90 grams of fat per day, focusing on those ones we *know* are good for us – avocado, cooking with EVOO/walnut oil (I’d love to cook with coconut oil but I can’t find one that gives me jazz hands), nuts and some nut butters, etc.  “The rest” belongs to carbohydrates.  I’m stacking them around workouts, and eating an even amount per meals that aren’t stacked around my workouts.  And some days I’m just eating them and not worrying about stacking them.  So there’s that.  The basics are…..I’ve been at about 2600-2700 calories on workout days for some time….like since April/May.  Rest days are generally 2000-2200 since that same time frame.

In the past week and a half I’ve started to ramp both of those up.  Mostly because I want to see where I can go for a bit.  So, I’ve been upping my carbohydrates just slightly on rest and workout days, roughly trying to get more like 2700-2800 calories on workout days, and 2200-2300 on rest days.  Like, let’s push the envelope a little.  I hope to do this for a few more weeks.  Then, possibly if I feel good about it and up to it, spending a focused period of time….like 8-ish weeks, on pure fat loss, and dropping those workout day intakes and rest day intakes just slightly.

Look, I’m strong as an ox.  I have enough muscle.  The training I do supports muscle, and even if I do decide to eat a bit less, I’m not too worried about maintaining that muscle gold that I have.  Feeding myself a little less during that time….well, that will take care of the body fat a bit.  And just for that little window of time.  Then I will ramp up those calories again.  You know, science experiment.

The thing that I want to write about here is this.  I’m basically on a reverse diet right now.  I spent a good 4-ish months ramping up to and eating an “amount” that supports my current weight, activity, habits, and the rest of my life.  I’ve stayed here deliberately without changing things for a couples of reasons – I want to “learn” what an appropriate intake feels like for me.  I want to know how I feel and am SUPPOSED to feel.  I want my body to feel very safe and know it’s getting fed every day.  I want to be so comfortable here that I know the signs of NOT feeling this way so I can identify when I get off base down the road.  You know?  I am LEARNING how to be here.

My weight has remained very stable during this time, without crazy swings, which tells me I am sort of at an appropriate intake.  Even while eating at a level that is “maintenance” for me….I have still made body comp changes.  I’m building muscle, and losing a little fat along the way.  Without really trying at all.  Which I love.

I’m experimenting with eating slightly more right now because my Fitbit tells me I have a LOT more activity than I’m actually eating for some days.  and I know Fitbits are NOT 100% accurate, but some days I really DO move a ton, in non-exercise fashion, that really does take a lot of energy.  Then there are some days where I am not moving as much and some days I find myself being a total slug.  I’m sorta trying to decide if I’m being a slug because my body actually needs a little more energy some days, or if it’s because some days I just want to be a slug :)

The other two non-exercise or food related things I’m focused on right now are managing stress through journaling and taking down time and also trying to average 7-8 hours of sleep per night.  I’d like to push that sleep number up a bit, but I’m feeling pretty good right now with what is happening currently, because my sleep has been quality sleep.

I have to say, 10 years ago, when I first started seriously working out and dabbling in the diet department, I would never DREAM of eating this amount of food.  And feeling good about it, and feeling good about myself……because I thought you had to suffer to “be there.”  And, “this amount” of food isn’t too much food, it’s actually just an appropriate intake that I’m not used to because of that stupid diet mindset for so long. Those days, I was all “if I’m not exhausted at the end of the workout” it wasn’t enough of a workout.  If I wasn’t keeping my food intake low, I was “going to get fat.” I wish me then would have known what Me now knows, because we could have saved a lot of drama.  I also wished I would have worked on stress management and sleeping in those days too :).  Sleeping when you are dead is NOT a good motto to live by, and that used to be my go-to.

Bottom line, you don’t need to starve yourself.  Even if you aren’t exercising to be an athlete.  Even if you are just picking up toddlers and kiddos all day long, and jamming out to Shrek and Despicable Me.  All movement counts and matters.  Eating an intake that supports YOU and YOUR LIFE and YOUR WEIGHT and YOUR ACTIVITY matters.  This isn’t sexy and isn’t what sells but it absolutely works and is sustainable and probably the most relaxed I’ve felt about any of this in a very, very, VERY long time.

Peace out!

Meal Prep: Half Prepared?

Last week was pretty typical over here.  We were HALF prepared.  Meaning, we made a LOT of one or two things, and went from there for the week.  And, we sorta ate out a little more than ideal too.  Like, to the point that eating out isn’t a “treat” but more because we haven’t prioritized mealtime at home so much.  Which I think will get back in line :)


We grilled a bunch of chicken breasts…..


Also made this week…..a “noodle salad base” which is essentially a whole box of penne (your choice on whole grain or which kind of pasta you like), 4 tablespoons olive oil mayo, and a few squirts of mustard, salt and pepper, and some peas.  All mixed together and cooled, and ready to mix with whatever protein you have post workout.  AND….cucumber salad – sliced cucumbers and onion, and equal parts vinegar and sugar, and some salt and pepper, left to soak for an hour or so before eating.

So, here are variations of all that…..





(sometimes you just have to have a bowl of oatmeal for desert after your meal of chicken and cucumber salad)

We are also a fan of oatmeal sausage (Gritzwurst?) and eat it from time to time….homemade….from my grandparents.  Definitely not the leanest of proteins, but dang it is YUM.  So here it is….alongside leftover beef roast, with beans and tomatoes….YUMMMMMM.


Then, I got my hands on some beets this week!  YUM.  So I roasted them (tossed with EVOO, salt and pepper first), and we ate them a variety of ways.  Most importantly, I told my kid they taste like candy and she believed me :)




And finally, a fun protein pancake recipe that TASTED good, but wasn’t quite enough food for breakfast (for me, after a few days of working out).  I need to figure out how to make one and a half times this recipe I think……

IMG_0411Recipe for the pancakes are 1/2 scoop oats, 1/4 c milk, 1/2 a scoop of vanilla protein powder, 1 egg, and half a banana….all whirred together in the blender and then regular pancake making rules apply…..pour in thin layers in a pan with some oil in it….flip when tops are beginning to bubble, and finish cooking on the second side.  Pretty yummy!  Not dry at all like typical protein pancake recipes….give these a whirl!

So this week, I don’t have ANYTHING prepped, aside from a chicken breast we still have to eat, and some ham steak pulled out for the grill.  But we have plenty of veggies and starchy stuff (potatoes and rice) on hand to eat, so I’m sure SOMETHING will get made in the next couple days to help us out.

How are YOU meal prepping this week?  Or what are your favorite go to meals when you are hard up for something yummo to eat?


Originally this was my journey to Tough Mudder…now it's my record of all things fitness and health!


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