MOTIVATION MONDAY: Preparing is the Key to Success!

Alright, it’s Monday and I know we all need a little motivation at the start of the week! So today I wanted to share a few things that I have learnt on my journey that have helped keep me successful and on track! I believe being prepared is key when beginning or continuing to live a healthy lifestyle. I

The first is my Crock Pot. Thank the Lord for this thing! It can create a lot of food with minimal work and time. I use it to make everything from my Sweet & Sour chicken to steel cut oats. I just turn it on before bed, and in the morning have a delicious meal. When preparing chicken, chili, oats, roast or whatever you decide to make, make it worth it and cook lots. If you know you are going to have busy week ahead, freeze whatever won’t be eaten with a few days and take it out as needed. If you have children, it is a great way to have meals prepared and prevent having to visit the drive-thru.

The second, is my Vitamix. Although it is a little pricey, it has paid for itself over and over. I use it to make smoothies, oat flour, almond flour, almond milk, dips, batter, chopping almonds,  almond butter, juices, ice cream, the possibilities are endless! It enables me to make my own food, so I know exactly what ingredients are in them! Even my husband has agreed he couldn’t live without it!

You don’t need to run out and buy a Vitamix, you can use any high-powered blender to create delicious smoothies and other recipes!

The third, is my rice cooker. I use it for the times I don’t have time to make sweet potatoes. It has saved me MANY times. It does all the work for me, and I can prepare other things without having to sit over the stove top and watch it.

The fourth, is my vegetable steamer. I love any handy inventions where I can just set the timer and do other things.

All of these tools make it easier in the kitchen for me when I am needing to prepare meals for the week ahead. They are tools that you can set and go on to do other things. Use them to your full advantage, make lots of food that will enable to grab a pre-made container, throw it in your or your families lunches and send them out the door!

Here is my husband preparing Jamies Turkey Meatloaf Muffins.  He ended up making 48 muffins and froze half of them to use later in the week. He used them for his morning and/or afternoon snacks! I put them into plastic baggies for him, so he could just grab them and go.

We use no excuses when it comes to eating healthy. We do whatever it takes to stay on track and be prepared.

FFIT TIPS

1. If you aren’t able to make it home for lunch during your work day or have limited time on your break, take your snacks and lunch with you to work, or have lunch pre-made in the morning. If you commute after work, bring your supper along with you in your cooler. This way you won’t either have the urge to stop at the drive-thru on the way home or when you arrive home you won’t be tempted to eat whatever is readily available.

2. If you go to the gym after work, take a pre-workout snack along with you.

3. If you have children to pick up from school and take to their after school activities, bring snacks along for them and yourself. Don’t rely on vending machines for snacks.

4. If you have running around to do, bring snacks or your lunch along with you. Even when I have a hair appointment, which is a half an hour highway drive from my home, I bring my lunch and snacks along with me.

5. If you are traveling bring a large cooler along with you. Pack snacks, sandwiches, homemade granola bars, fruit, vegetables or anything that will prevent you from having to stop at the next gas station for lunch or snacks.

I always pack my lunch the night before, so I can ever use the excuse “I don’t have time”. I take 15 minutes before bed to pack everything I need for the next day, and can just grab and go 🙂

Not only does being prepared make living a healthy lifestyle easier, it always saves you money!

I know I have said this before, but it is still scary to post pictures of myself! The thought of my picture being out there for people to judge and criticize are daunting. But I am SO thankful to everyone that reads my blog, and Facebook page for their overwhelming positivity and encouragement. I share pictures, because I want to be able to share my journey and transformation with others. I share them for those reasons only. I want to show others, that if I can do it, anyone can! I can honestly say I LOVE blogging and sharing my journey. My blog is a place where I can come and share the information I have gained with others. A place where I feel safe in sharing my opinion, pictures, recipes, ideas and whatever else I feel like sharing that day :), and I hope others can feel the same way. Below is a picture I had recently taken of me. The reason why I wanted to get pictures done, is to document my journey. Remind myself of the hard work I have put in and to once again step out of my box. Once again, it is scary to share new pictures, but I knew my blog would be the perfect place to share them. I am so glad I was brave enough to do it, as it was one of the best experiences of my life. I would like to thank Kris Josef for making it that kind of experience for me. He is an amazing photographer, that does amazing work!

Once again I have done something that terrifies me! But was it worth it? Absolutely! I would do it again? In heart beat. I believe in documenting your journey, and experiencing some pretty cool things along the way :). I hope one day I will get over this fear, but for right now, it is just part of who I am :).

I hope you all have wonderful Monday!!

Tis’ The Season

FOR PUMPKIN! I am lagging behind all of the other bloggers about posting a pumpkin based recipe. One of my faults is not being able to make a decision on what I am going to create and what I think everyone will enjoy most! I have been thinking about it for the last couple of weeks and finally decided last night what I was going to make. Once I make a decision I need to execute it ASAP or I forget. So last nights creation was….

Peanut Butter Pumpkin Protein Cookies (say that 5 times fast)

2 cups oat flour (can use any flour)

2 scoops Progressive Harmonized Vanilla protein

1 cup 100% pumpkin puree (only ingredient is pumpkin)

1 ripe banana

1/2 cup peanut/almond butter

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

2 tbsp Holy Crap cereal (you can substitute chia or hemp)

2 tbsp cacao nibs

4 packets of Stevia

8 drops liquid stevia

*I was going to use honey (1/4 cup) instead of stevia, but I forgot to buy some! You could also you maple syrup (1/4 cup). You can add more if you want a sweeter cookie.

PREHEAT TO 350 DEGREES

1. Combine all wet ingredients into a large bowl and combine well.

2. Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl and combine well.

3. Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until well combined. Recipe will yield 12 large cookies.

4. Cook for approximately 15 minutes. I don’t pay attention to time as much as I do texture, so if you like a more dry texture, you can cook for longer.

Enjoy!!

Workout Update

I have decided to take 5 days off of training to let my body have some time to heal and rest. Since we train often and intense, I want to continue to see results and not injuries!

This past month has brought many exciting things into my life, including going outside my box once again and starting my own online supplement store http://thefitlife.vitahub.com/ through www.vitahub.com. It offers a large variety of products including protein, vitamins and so many other things to contribute to health and wellness. Shipping is free for any purchases over $99 and extremely fast. I haven’t had to wait more than 2 days for my products to arrive! Make sure to check it out!

Since I am always sharing information, I would like you to share some information with me. What kinds of posts are you wanting to see more of? Recipes, workouts, snack ideas?? Let me know what you would like to see!

I LOVE the below picture! It is so true. A diet is never sustainable for your entire life, but clean eating as a lifestyle definitely is :).

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Have a wonderful Sunday!!!

Go Bananas

Today was just on of those days where I really wanted to bake, but had NOTHING in my house! Nothing was going to stop me and I haven’t created a new recipe in what seems like forever, and was dying to get something new to you guys! So I rounded up what I could find and made a Banana Oatmeal loaf. I don’t know why, but I usually end up using my batter as muffins instead of a loaf, so today I wanted to be kind of crazy and switch it up. But if you would like to use this batter for muffins instead, have a party (it’s a free country ;)). This recipe is great as a snack or even can be used as breakfast is you are pressed for time in the a.m.

Banana Oatmeal Loaf (Muffins) with Granola Topping

2 ripe bananas

1/2 cup almond milk

1/2 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt

1 cup oat flour (I used rolled oats ground up in my blender)

1 cup rolled oats

1 tbsp chia seeds

2 scoops vanilla protein (you can omit, but add 1/4 cup honey)

2 tsp cinnamon

3 packets of stevia

1 tsp baking soda

Granola Topping (who doesn’t love granola?)

1 tbsp melted coconut oil (can be found at local grocery or health food store)

1 tbsp melted almond/peanut butter

1 tbsp chia seeds

2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 cup rolled oats

3 packets stevia

*I don’t make my baking overly sweet, so if you enjoy a sweetner taste, I would recommend adding some honey or more stevia to this recipe.

DIRECTIONS (Who really needs em’? You could be like me and mix them all together at once, sometimes diasterous, but it all looks the same in the end doesn’t it? ;))

PREHEAT OVEN TO 350 DEGREES

1. For the banana bread batter, combine wet ingredients into a bowl and stir until well combined.

2. Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl and stir until well combined.

3. Pour dry ingredients into the bowl of wet ingredients and stir until well combined.

4. Place batter into a loaf pan OR muffin tin

5. For the granola topping, combine all ingredients and place on top of banana bread batter in loaf pan.

6. Bake for 45-50 minutes. I like mine with a chewier texture, so I usually only bake for 45 minutes.

And most of all, ENJOY!

Today was Day 43 on the Livefit Trainer. You can see my husband in the back waiting for me to be done my workout, I am kind of pokey, but that’s the story of my life ;).

My post-workout meal today was my protein pancake, which is by far my favorite meal of the day! It’s simple and quick!

Protein Pancake

1/2 cup rolled oats

4 egg whites

1 egg

2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce

boatload of cinnamon

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup blueberries

1. Place all ingredients EXCEPT the blueberries into a blender and blend until well combined.

2. Pour mixture into a pan and cook like a regular pancake.

3. I always heat up my blueberries and smush them on top of my pancake to make a sort of jam and add some more cinnamon.

What is your favorite post-workout meal? I would love to hear your ideas, and be sure to include a photo so I can share your ideas on here!

If there is something you would like to see me post about, please email me at tif_walker@hotmail.com or Facebook me ;).