Jan 2, 2017

New Year New Gear

All I want for Christmas is...endless pairs of yoga pants with an iPhone pocket. Oh, and I want to wear them to work. Is that to much to ask? 

It's 2017 - and you're going to see A LOT of "New Year, New Me" posts - with resolutions that most people will drop, forget or abandon by the end of January. So instead of being obsessed with my goals for next year - especially since I missed two this year - I want to share some of the new gear I have to help kick start my 2017 into high gear.

1) Have a diet/meal prep/healthy eating plan in place. Step 1 is always have a plan. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. So what's your poison? Personally, I think the best "jump all in" plan is to do the January Whole30. If you check their Instagram and web site they rally the troops to really ban together and do this as a group and get healthy together. I've had some great success with it and always advocate that if you want to try something new - to do this. But what am I doing? I am very excited to be doing the Renaissance Periodization for cutting. It's definitely more intense than anything I've ever done but I am excited to try something new and hopefully see some really great results.

2) Get some wearable fitness tech. Tracking your fitness is such a great way to track how you are doing. I love the Fitbit - as a user for may years it has never let me down. One of my favorite features is that you can do weekly challenges with friends and family. It keeps your own your toes and gives you that little extra push. I'm really exited to kick the year off with the new Charge HR2. I was happy to see that it helps track exercises other than running/jogging/walking better. I also managed to find a great sale on the FitBit Aria scale that helps track your weight and body-fat - plus sync with the app I already have. Score!

3) Buy some new gear....DUH! I love sales around Thanksgiving because if you watch a deal close enough, you'll get a really good deal. For Christmas I got a handful of Victoria Secret pants which are my ABSOLUTE favorite. I also got a few of the sports bras - all multi-colors which is the point of a good sports bra -amiright?  I was also pleased to get a ridiculous sale on Reebok CrossFit Transitions. "When the WOD calls for snatches, sprints, and rope climbs, you'll be proud to post your score with our CrossFit Transition. The strap closure means you can lock in tight for the heavy lifts, while added traction on the midsole gives you confidence 25-feet up." - according to the site, which I feel like it makes it so much easier.

4) Don't forget to take your supplements and your vitamins. Sometimes I feel like we fail to take our daily vitamins - I always remember to give my daughter hers but have to set reminders to take mine. I am also pumped to re-add protein shakes back into my routine. Shout out to Optimum for making such great products. 

What are you doing to kick start 2017? Share with me on Instagram!

Dec 30, 2016

Macro friendly Hungarian Beef Goulash

Courtesy of Bodybuilding.com


Olive oil: 1 tbsp.
Onion, chopped: 1 cup
Sweet paprika: 1/4 cup (Hungarian if you can find it)
Beef bottom round or tri-tip (lean only), cut into 1’’ pieces: 2 lb.
Garlic cloves, minced: 4
Bell pepper, chopped: 1
Canned organic diced tomatoes: 28 oz.
Celery, chopped: 1/2 cup
Beef broth: 1 cup
Worcestershire sauce: 2 tbsp.
Salt: 1 1/2 tsp.
Black pepper: 1/2 tsp.
Bay leaves: 2
Caraway seed, crushed: 1 tsp. (optional)

In a Dutch oven or large saucepot, cook onions with olive oil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until lightly browned.
Remove from heat, and stir in paprika (you don’t want the paprika to burn and turn bitter).
Add diced beef and minced garlic and return to heat. Cook for 15-30 minutes until tender and no longer pink (tougher cuts require more time).
Add bell pepper, diced tomatoes, celery, and remaining ingredients. (This is also where you would add other diced vegetables like carrots, parsnips, or potatoes).
Bring to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer for 30-40 minutes.
For meal prep, divide the batch into six portions. Enjoy!

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Dec 18, 2016

Sausage & Cheesy Potatoes

Perfect for this chilly December


3 cups idaho potatoes, peeled, boiled and cut into cubes when cool, approx. 1 lb
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1⁄4 teaspoon pepper
1⁄2 lb Velveeta cheese, diced
1⁄2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 lb skinless smoked sausage (Eckrich is my favorite brand)
1⁄8 teaspoon paprika


Cut skinless smoked sausage in half, lengthwise, and then chop into 1/2 inch "half moon" cuts. Cook in a frying pan for about 15 minutes, turning frequently to SLIGHTLY brown.
Meanwhile, put cooked & diced potatoes in 2 quart casserole. Add cooked meat and give it a gentle toss.
Mix all remaining ingredients (except for shredded cheddar cheese & the paprika) in a saucepan over medium heat until warm, melted and smooth. (Use a whisk and stir constantly.).
Pour white/cheese sauce over potatoes and meat. Sprinkle shredded sharp cheddar cheese on top, and then sprinkle paprika evenly over the top.
Bake in preheated 350°F oven for 35-45 minutes (watch, until golden brown on top).
NOTE: You can substitute: 1/2 lb. hot dogs, sliced into 1/2-inch slices OR 1/2 lb. ham diced into 1/2-inch dices OR 12 oz. can of Spam diced into 1/2-inch dices, instead of the smoked sausage.
Ready In 1 hr
Serves 4-6

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Dec 15, 2016

Sweet & Sour Chicken

Sweet and Sour Chicken (Paleo & Low FODMAP)
Sarah Nevins
Yields 3-4

Sweet and Sour Chicken made healthy with low fodmap, paleo ingredients free of additives and full of flavor.
10 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch chunks
1/2 cup (65 grams) arrowroot starch (or cornstarch)
1 large egg beaten
1/4 cup (55 grams) coconut oil
1/2 cup (100 grams) coconut sugar or regular white sugar
1/4 cup (60 ml) apple cider vinegar*
2 tablespoons coconut aminos (or gluten free soy sauce/tamari)
1/4 cup ketchup - for low fodmap ketchup see the notes
1/4 cup (60 ml) chicken stock
1 red pepper cut into chunks
1 cup pineapple chunks
3 spring onions stalks (green part only for low fodmap)
First prepare the sauce by adding the coconut sugar, vinegar, coconut aminos, chicken stock and ketchup to a medium sauce pan. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce to a low heat and leave until later.
Add chicken pieces and beaten egg to a large ziplock bag. Seal and shake to coat chicken. Then add the arrowroot starch to the bag, shaking again to lightly coat all the chicken pieces.
Drizzle a large pan or skillet with oil. Add the coated chicken. Fry over medium heat, a couple of minutes on each side until the coating begins to crisp. Add pepper and pineapple chunks. Continue to saute over medium heat until chicken is browned and cooked through.
Add the sauce to chicken and peppers. Cover and reduce the heat down to a simmer and allow the juices to soak into the chicken for a few minutes. Top with sliced green onions. Serve over rice and enjoy!
Recipe Type: Mains
Apple cider vinegar is considered low FODMAP under 2 tablespoons, but if you would prefer another alternative just to be on the safe side you can also use white wine or rice vinegar instead

Low fodmap ketchup recipe: http://www.asaucykitchen.com/low-fodmap-ketchup-diy/


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Dec 13, 2016

Avocado Chicken Skillet

This is one of my favorite meals. I am including the part where it adds CHEESE because that is how I usually cook it for my husband!


2 (10 - 11 oz each) boneless skinless chicken breasts, butterflied and halved

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp Italian seasoning

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 Tbsp olive oil

6 oz fresh mozzarella, cut into 8 slices

4 avocado slices (from a firm but ripe large avocado)

2 medium vine ripened tomatoes, sliced

3 Tbsp balsamic glaze (I used Bertolli)

1/3 cup chopped basil ribbons


In a bowl mix together garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Sprinkle mixture evenly over both sides of each chicken cutlet. Heat olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken (cover pan with a splatter screen if you have one) and cook until golden brown on bottom, about 4 - 6 minutes. Rotate and cook opposite side until chicken has nearly cooked though, reducing burner temperature just slightly if needed, about 4 - 5 minutes (it should be nearly 160 in center on an instant read thermometer) then add two slices of mozzarella to the top each cutlet, followed by one avocado slice, and 1 - 2 tomato slices. Cover pan with lid, return to heat and allow to cook 1 - 2 minutes longer until cheese has melted and chicken registers 165 in center.

Sprinkle chicken with pepper, drizzle with balsamic glaze and sprinkle with fresh basil. Serve warm.

Recipe source: Cooking Classy

Dec 12, 2016

Sausage egg roll bowl

So yummy

Sausage Egg Roll in a Bowl – Paleo, Low Carb, Whole30
Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 4 Servings

Per Serving - Calories: 255 | Fat: 18.7g | Protein: 14.8g | Total carbs: 8g | Fiber 3.8g | Net Carbs: 4.2g


2 tbsp sesame oil (get it here)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup onion, diced
5 green onions, sliced on a bias (white and green parts)
1 lb ground pork
1/2 tsp ground ginger (get it here)
sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1 tbsp Sriracha. more to taste
14 oz bag coleslaw
3 tbsp Coconut Aminos (get it here)
1 tbsp Rice Wine Vinegar (get it here)
2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

Heat sesame oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
Add the garlic, onion, and white portion of the green onions. Sauté until the onions are translucent and the garlic is fragrant.
Add the ground pork, ground ginger, sea salt, black pepper and Sriracha. Sauté until the pork is cooked through.
Add the coleslaw mix, coconut aminos, and rice wine vinegar. Sauté until the coleslaw is tender.
Top with green onions and sesame seeds before serving.

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Dec 11, 2016

Chicken spinach and pasta bake

Sorry not paleo. Or gluten free. Or dairy free. Toss the health book out for this one

It's been a bit of a frenzied week here in our house. My daughter's fourteenth birthday party is this Saturday. We have over thirty guests set to attend and I've been in my crazy party prep mode since the weekend. (My poor children and husband know what I'm talking about ... don't ya, guys?)

I still have most of the shopping to do and a bit of housework yet to get done. The always-present-the-week-before-a-major-party-event chore list has been posted on the fridge for several days ... color-coded according to each family member's respective day-to-day tasks for the week. (I know ... my OCD really comes out in full force at times such as these!) Since all of my children have their birthdays in the spring, we get ready for their parties and get much of our spring cleaning done all at the same time. (It's a win-win for this mom!)

I'm taking a brief break, however, to share this wonderfully scrumptious recipe with you. It's a very simple pasta bake that could be changed up to suit your tastes and to utilize what you have on hand. Swap out the spinach for some blanched broccoli. Add in some canned artichokes or fresh, chopped mushrooms. Want to make it a little more healthful? Use whole wheat pasta.

Yields 6 - 8 servings.


10 ounces dry pasta (I used a combination of rotini, farfalle and penne. Any similar size would work.)
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 ounces chive and onion cream cheese
1 cup sour cream (or plain Greek yogurt)
1 cup whole milk, heavy cream or half-and-half (I used half-and-half)
1/2 cup shredded or grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1 - 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh spinach
2 cups cooked chicken (cubed or shredded)
1/2 cup fresh tomatoes, cut into large chunks (Can use grape/cherry tomatoes sliced in half)
Fresh basil or parsley, for garnish


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Coat a medium casserole dish with non-stick spray. (Mine was a 10" round, but a 9 x 13 would work fine.)

Cook pasta in salted, boiling water to al dente. Drain and set aside.

While pasta is cooking, heat butter in a medium saute pan set to medium heat. Add in the onion and garlic. Cook for 3 - 4 minutes to slightly soften veggies. Do not brown.

Add in cream cheese and stir to melt. Reduce heat to low. Stir in sour cream, milk, Parmesan cheese, 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes (if using). Stir until everything is well-combined and melted. Turn off heat.

Combine the pasta, chicken, spinach and tomatoes in a large bowl.

Add in the sauce and gently stir to coat.

Pour into the prepared baking dish. (I drizzled in a little more half-and-half over the mixture once it was in the baking dish because it looked a little dry to me.)

Top with the remaining mozzarella.

Bake for 20-25 minutes

Original poster Here

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