Discomfort Zone is the Magical Spot Where Results Actually Happen

 

Losing weight is pretty hard shit.

It seems like it is easy enough, especially with all the billions of ways that tend to flood the internet and our minds with ways of losing weight in X amount of days, weeks, months, etc.

But let’s be real. It isn’t that easy. If it was there wouldn’t be such a high obesity rate, the health and fitness industry wouldn’t be bringing in billions of dollars each and every single year, and we wouldn’t be personally struggling with losing the weight and melting the fat in the first damn place.

I spent so many years trying myself.  I went on my first diet when I was in high school and from that point on I was pretty much always concerned and focused on my weight and my body. It was the very thing that I put so much energy into and yet I didn’t truly become successful in my life until age 34.

Don’t get me wrong. I did lose some weight here and there when I would go on these diets. But, I would always gain it back. I could never keep it off. The weight lost would be anywhere between 10 to 15 lbs, with the most ever being 40 lbs at one point.

But it ALWAYS came back. And brought more with it.

And while I would follow these diets as instructed, I could never get the “rules” to stick. Which was the problem. The rules. It was always about deprivation and restriction. Pushing through the will power and just working to ignore the hunger and eat a shit ton less and workout a shit ton more. And not the reasonable amount either. I am talking about the extreme amount.

And while I spent many, MANY years believing that I was just doing it wrong and that I wasn’t capable of making this work while every single person around me (in my own mind) was able to do it, the fact of the matter is that these diets?  They are all about the quick and dirty instant gratification.

And I must confess that I always wanted the weight gone as soon as I made up my mind to get healthy and lose the weight in the first place.  I was so tired of feeling so fat and ugly; so tired of feeling lethargic & low energy & not getting good sleep; as well as feeling so depressed and unhappy and anxious.

As well as ashamed and embarrassed of the way I looked and feeling like every one who stared at me could only see the fat.

All of these diets thrive on one thing and one thing alone; our struggles and our self loathing and our deepest and darkest emotions, as well as the need for us to feel better already right now this very instant.  And think about this for a moment. We live in a world where anything we could ever want can be given to us right now. We don’t have to wait for it. We don’t have to put in much work or effort. If we want it it is given to us right now. And we expect this with everything in our lives from food, happiness, money, materialistic things, etc.

We want it all and we want it right now.

But our bodies? They don’t work like this.  As soon as our bodies realize that we are using more energy than we are giving back, it shuts down. It goes right into survival mode. Because our bodies aren’t concerned with looking better and wearing smaller clothes and appearing thin and beautiful and being accepted by our peers.

Their main concern and job is to keep us ALIVE.

And if at any point it feels like we are starving, it’s going to take every single bite of food and store it so that we can continue to remain alive.  So even if we are eating 1200 calories a day of fruits and vegetables and never eating any junk food, all while we are working out for 2 hours every single day, it just doesn’t care.  Because to our bodies we are starving and losing precious energy and so it goes into let’s keep this chick alive mode until we are able to obtain more food because right now we are in scarcity mode.  Our bodies are super smart. They know what’s up. They don’t know that we have an abundance of food at our disposal.

So what does all of this talk about diets have to do with discomfort?

Every thing actually. See, we are comfortable with going along with what everyone else is doing. With following the masses and ignoring who we truly are. Because at first we don’t really want to put in the work; we would rather have someone else do it for us and tell us what to do. Which is exactly what all of these programs and diets do for us. They tell us what to do and we just are supposed to show up and do it and then results just happen.

But that isn’t how it goes. And we know this. Because we have done this shit over and over and over again and yet we always get the same result; which is NO sound results. It never stays. It never lasts.  So those smaller clothes we once used to wear now how to go to the back of the closet until we can do it all over again. And the cycle continues.

My absolute favorite Brene Brown quote is one that I refer back to often when I need to own up to what I am doing that just isn’t serving me or creating the changes that I need to make.

In her book, The Gifts of Imperfection, she says this, “ We don’t want to be uncomfortable. We want a quick and dirty “how-to” list for happiness. We don’t change, we don’t grow, and we don’t move forward without the work. If we really want to live a joyful, connected, and meaningful life, we MUST talk about the things that get in the way.”

When I first read this it stopped me dead in my tracks. And I realized that this was the very thing I had been doing all along.  This realization actually came to me during the fall of 2014 as I had already been on my personal health and weight loss journey since December 2013. And while I had lost some weight and had some results up to this point, I was noticing that I was reverting back to my good old dieter’s mindset ways.  I was obsessively counting my calories and macros. I was working out at the gym for 2 hours 6 days a week.  Progress was slowing down & was pretty much at the point of non-existent. And I was getting angry and frustrated over it.

So this quote came at the perfect time because I was not allowing myself to get uncomfortable in this process.  I was staying in the comfort zone of dieting hell because I was too afraid to own my shit and get uncomfortable and try something that was taking me into the realm of the unknown.

But I knew that if I didn’t, this journey I had embarked on was going to end up the same as all the other times. And when I decided back in December of 2013 that weighing 245 lbs was just NOT GOING TO DO any longer, I vowed that this was going to be the very last time as the weight and fat was going to be gone forever.

And I just couldn’t allow for this to happen.

So, I got super real and honest with myself, got out my journal, and I wrote down all the bullshit I was telling myself up to that point. And then I got super uncomfortable and I wrote down all my fears and what was really stopping me from going all in with this journey.

Because in order to be all in and dedicated, we have to own our bullshit stories we tell ourselves.  We have to get super clear and become really aware of all the things that we were allowing to get in the way of the whole reason why we are doing this losing weight gig in the first damn place.

And once we do this, we take that one step into the discomfort zone, and begin taking action. We begin to put in the work every single day. We own our story and who we are and what we are about. We are completely aware of our actions and choices that we make. And we provide ourselves the self-love and compassion and empathy and know that no matter what, we are doing enough every single day. And we tell ourselves that we are awesome and amazing and that we are going to reach these goals.

Even if we have to fake it before we make it.

And then the hard work we put in?  It ends up feeling easier and easier. Before we know it, we are just automatically making the choices. And then one day we look in the mirror and we see the results we have been desperately seeking.

And we realize all along that we had the capability all along.  We just had to own our bullshit and get out of our own way.


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Why I don’t do traditional cardio

To do cardio,

or to not do cardio.

It’s the age old question isn’t it?  

Do we do cardio before we strength train?  Do we do cardio after we strength train?  Do we do cardio on a complete separate day? Do we just do nothing but cardio and not even lift weights?

These questions are just some of the questions I have asked myself over the years, and I am sure that you have asked yourself the same.

 

But we get so caught up in all the specifics don’t we?  We want to badly to make sure we are doing everything we possibly can in order to get to our goals.  We want to do the right kind of exercise for the right amount of time in the right amount of order for the week.

We just want to make sure that we are doing all we can because otherwise, what are we even doing this for?

I get it.  I honestly do.  I recall these same feelings as I have had them for years and years and years.

And if I am being totally upfront and honest, I still do from time to time.  After all, I am  human.

But getting all caught up in the specifics of all of this has us missing the big picture.  We are so focused on being so perfect that we become paralyzed from taking any action; we are trying so hard to make sense of all of this so we make sure we don’t fail.

And while we believe this is the route to take, we are only hurting ourselves by NOT taking action.

Which is why I stopped worrying so much about this cardio thing, and instead just started to focus on moving my body.

I am not a huge fan of cardio anyways.  I honestly find it boring and when I would do it in the past, I would totally dread it.

And by dreading it, I would just loathe the time it would take to do it, and I would hate every single moment of it.

So, I made a change.  I mean, I dreaded doing it, I hated it, I never liked it when I was doing it, so…..If I disliked it so much, then why on earth would I even continue to do something that I don’t really like?

Because in the past, I have found that I would do these things for a while because I thought I had to, but there would always come a time when I would give it up because I just couldn’t bear to do it any longer.

So I made a choice.  I mean, I never really did anything I didn’t like and enjoy, so what if instead I chose to workout in a manner that I actually liked?  I mean, what is the worst thing that could come of this decision?

So, I made the choice to just give it up and instead focus on exercise that I really enjoyed doing.

Know what happened? I kept showing up.  I enjoyed what I did and I kept showing up for more.

And then, consistency happened.  And with consistency came the results.

This healthy lifestyle thing has got to bring actual joy to our lives for it to stick.  Otherwise, we are doing the same old damn thing that we have done for years and years and yet, it never even gave us the results we were seeking.

So don’t you think it is about time we start thinking outside of the box and try something new?

 

And while I do not do cardio, I do enjoy doing some HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) from time to time.  I get my heart rate up, it is always a quickie workout, and I sweat my ass off.  Not to mention I can do some strength training in the mix (which is my favorite) and I am one happy sweaty gal!

Now HIIT gets this rap that we need to be vomiting by the time we are finished.  And that shit just isn’t true.  We move at our level.  We take rest when we need and we put forth the effort that our bodies can handle at that time.   Besides, we make our own rules when it comes to living healthy and we have to work with our own unique life and situation.

So today I am going to share a workout with you!  It is one of the HIIT workouts that I personally do myself.

All you need to do is have an interval timer ready to go (I use the app Seconds on my phone!), set it up, and go to work!

Make sure to come back and comment how this workout with for you!

And most important, have fun with this!

 


HIIT 20 minute cardio quickie workout!

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JX1YNdhVAmV9hXglfwC-FzrTMO4Q43IVE6K7XcpLSkM/pub


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Why Diets Fail US

I can honestly say that I have been on a diet for years; literally years, up until about a year ago.

When we put it like that, that’s a pretty long ass time isn’t it?

But I desperately wanted to feel better and wear smaller clothes and look attractive to other people. I wanted to fit in with other people who were smaller than I was.

Everywhere I would look I would feel like the biggest and fattest person in the room.  There was even a time when I was actually looking for someone that was larger than me so I wouldn’t feel so much like the odd ball.

Now whether or not this was actually true, it was certainly how I felt. And because I felt this way, it was the actual reality of my life.

And while I am certain that people did look at me as being the fat and lazy girl in the room, no one judged more than myself.  I would say and think some pretty nasty things about my body.

You know, the body that has one of the biggest jobs EVER…..keeping me alive and all.

And yet I would punish it by starving it and restricting my caloric intake. Because that is what diets have us do, and that is what we think we have to do in order to become, well, smaller.

And regardless of the signs my body was telling me, I never really listened.  I would just keep pressing on. Even though I would become ravenous and want to eat all of the things and binge out like no other (because my body is seriously trying to tell me that I need to eat more because well hey lady we have to stay alive!)

I just always believed that it was me.  I was too weak and didn’t have enough willpower in order to make it through the damn plan.  Every one else seemed to do good (I mean those before and after photos are totally legit and that bitch did it), so why couldn’t I??

Because diets are meant to be short term.  They are created to give us that quick fix we are seeking.  They aren’t meant to be a total lifestyle change or to really even get us to our goals. And if we do happen to be the 1% that reaches our goals on a diet, well then we do tend to gain it back.  

Why?

Because our bodies are smarter than us.  That’s why in a nutshell.  We can’t restrict calories forever. Our bodies only allow so much.  And at any time when it senses that we are trying to starve it, it will slow down our metabolism and store every damn thing that we are eating because, hello!  We have to stay alive and everything has to function in order for this to occur!

And think about it.  Diets will always keep us coming back.  Because they know that we are not going to stay that way for long, and we are going to need them again and again and again.

It took me such a long time to realize this. But when I finally decided to take in what I was learning from other women who had ditched the diet and decided to play by a new set of rules (their own) a pretty amazing thing happened.

I started to lose weight and have fat loss, and yet wasn’t feeling restricted or ravenous or any of those things I always felt on a diet.   Which told me that my body was happy with how I was choosing to nourish it.  So since I was giving it what it needed, it was taking care of everything else for me!  

Why the hell didn’t I team up with my body before?!?!?!

Oh yeah, because I hated it.

So the counting the calories and the restriction and the weird meal plans that diets give us as being the “successful way to lose the weight’?????

Because they were created with failure in mind. They don’t teach us what we need to know in order to WORK WITH our bodies; they pretty much teach us how to WORK AGAINST our bodies.  And our bodies fight back.  Ever heard of a plateau?  Biggest defense mechanism our body has.  It’s just the way that our bodies tell us that enough is enough and you have got to stop.

It took me a long time to figure this out and learn to honor and trust my own body.  I can’t even begin to tell you just how freeing it was to stop obsessing so much over my food and whether or not eating something was going to make or break me reaching my personal weight loss goals.

As much as we want to be able to feel more comfortable in our own skin and wear smaller clothes and have less fat on our body, stressing over every little thing to get there doesn’t sound like the happiness we were hoping for, now does it?  

Are you tired of stressing over every little bite that goes in your mouth and yet no progress has been seen by doing this?  Are you tired of all of trying all of these diets and still feel like you haven’t gotten as far as the diets promised? Are you just ready to feel better and feel more comfortable in your clothes and your skin?

Then maybe it is time to take a different approach.

I have been putting my heart and soul into this little project as I too understand exactly what it feels like to be struggling with weight loss for years and years and yet seem to be getting nowhere.   

My Fat 2 Fitabulous Coaching Club is more about ditching the diet and ditching the exercise for hours mentality.  We are breaking all the damn diet rules and are instead going to work together to create our own rules that fit within our life and not constantly work against it.

So if you are ready to ditch the diets and finally learn how you can reach your weight loss goals then I invite you to join us.  It’s the support, sisterhood, no-nonsense, community that you have been searching for. Your spot is waiting, and we can’t wait to meet you!

 

 

 

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Work it Out Wednesday! Beginner’s Workout Included!!

 

In the beginning we all want the “perfect plan”; we want the “perfect workout” so that we can finally reach those goals!  But what we really don’t realize is the fact that there is no such thing.

 

Movement is Movement.

 

Take for instance my father.  He has worked in construction since age 14.  Everyday he is carrying supplies and climbing up and down ladders.  He is on his feet all day long and walking around and picking things up; He is moving his body.  So therefore, he is pretty strong!

And guess what?  He doesn’t go and workout at the gym each and every day nor does he do any workouts at home.

His job is his workout because of what he does all day.

Let’s take this a step further.  What about when we were children.  We didn’t set up a play date to work our abs our do a Hiit class now did we?  NO!  We were riding our bikes and running around in the yard; we were playing house or restaurant or playing with cars and dolls, etc.

We were just moving our bodies.

 

This is the mindset that we need to work on; this is the change that needs to happen and we just need to focus on doing some movement; and that can be whatever that is for you.  So if you like to take a class or you enjoy working with weights at home or at the gym then do it!  If you enjoy nature hikes or bike rides then do that too.

 

My point is that we just need to start moving our bodies in the beginning.  Forget trying to figure out this perfect workout that will give you the most amazing butt ever.  IF you want booty gains then worry about that later once you have created the habit of MOVING YOUR BODY!

 

To get you started I have a fun core workout to share with you today! It is super important to have a strong core as it helps us to do every day tasks.  This workout is including dynamic core exercises as well as static.  The difference?  Static exercises, also known as isometrics, greatly exerts muscles without requirement movement of the joints.  Dynamic exercises keep both joints and muscles moving and they work the abdominal and stabilizer muscle.

 

Be sure to scroll down to grab your core workout for today!  This can be done by itself or add it to the end of your own workout!  And above all, HAVE FUN!!!


CORE WORKOUT!

 

HERE’S WHAT YOU WILL NEED!

  • A TIMER
  • A STABILITY BALL

HERE’S WHAT YOU GOTTA DO!

Perform each exercises with the recommend hold times and reps.  Do at least a couple of rounds if adding to the end of the workout.  If this is THE workout you are doing, do as many rounds as you can for 20 minutes!


Exercises

✮ Chair Pose: (Start by standing in an upright position. Raise your hands over your head, bend your knees, and extend your upper body forward to an approximate 45-degree angle.  Keep your feet flat and push through your heels.  Hold for 1 minute

 

✮ Sitting Balance: (Sit on a stability ball, with your hands resting on the ball at your sides. Raise your right leg parallel to the ground; repeat with left leg) Hold for 1 minute each leg

 

✮ Forearm Plank: (Position yourself on all fours, then plant your forearms on the floor parallel to one another, with 90-degree bends at the elbows. Raise your knees off the ground, and lengthen your legs until they are in line with your body.   Hold for 30s if beginner; 2 minutes for intermediate

 

✮Hip Circles on Stability Ball: (Sit on a stability ball with your hands on your hips and feet close together. Keeping your core braced, use your hips to rotate the ball in small circular motions in a counterclockwise position.    Perform 10 hip circles counterclockwise and then clockwise

 

✮ Reverse Bridge Rotation: (Sit on a stability ball with your feet on the floor, shoulder-width apart; walk forward slowly while rolling your body along the stability ball until your upper back is supported by the ball. Extend your arms fully, holding your hands clasped directly above your chest. Rotate your upper body toward the left and up onto the left shoulder, then return to the center position and continue the movement over to the right.   Complete a set of 15 on the right and on the left side

 

✮ Straight Leg Raise: (lie on your back with your arms at your sides, parallel to your body. lift your legs slightly off the floor. Then raise both legs until they are nearly vertical to the floor, the lower them just short of the floor.   Do a set of 20


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Nutrition Tips for Healthy Eating on the Weekends!

I asked 12 of my favorite health & fitness ladies to share  their #1 nutrition tip for eating healthy on the weekends!

 

The struggle has always been that we eat relatively healthy Monday through Friday; but when the weekend hits, that’s when we tend to stray from the way of eating that makes us feel so good and satisfied….. to a weekend full of overeating all the things that we didn’t “allow” to be on our plate during the week. This is a cycle that so many of us tend to struggle with, but have yet to find the solution to. So we remain on the same cycle over and over and over again; and while on this cycle we tend to not be making any head way on our personal weight loss goals.

And it’s about time that this shit stops.

We don’t have to live this way.  And now it’s time for us to take action and gain some new tools to keep in our back pocket for this health and fitness lifestyle we are working so hard to achieve!  

So grab a cup of coffee or tea, grab a comfy spot, and take some time to read what each of these badass babes had to say pertaining to the question “What’s your #1 nutrition tip for eating healthy on the weekends!

Then take the time to implement them one by one to find the “thing” that works super well for you and your life!


Jill Coleman

Founder and Owner of Jill Fit

https://www.facebook.com/JillFit/

My #1 nutrition tip for eating healthy on the weekends is being more strategic during the week as a preemptive approach. So many women overindulgence or overeat on the weekends because it feels like a “relief” from the deprivation or dieting they white-knuckled their way through all week long. Which is common but the key to taking the edge off feeling deprived is to strategically use small nutritional gimmes earlier in the week so that when the weekend hits, you feel satisfied enough to stay consistent with healthy eating. It’s an evening out of the highs and lows in the week so that you eventually eat the same on Saturday that you do on Monday.


Natalie Jill

Founder and Owner of Natalie Jill Fit

https://www.facebook.com/nataliejillfit/

 

Think ADDITION vs. Subtraction — Look at all of the things you CAN and should have as opposed to focusing on the things you shouldn’t have! Eat more of the good things and make less room for the bad. Make it a challenge for yourself to get in as many fresh vegetables, healthy seasonal fruits, lean proteins, healthy fats, and lots and lots of water every single day! When we focus on what we can add instead of what we shouldn’t have, it is more positive, empowering, and easy to stick to.


Michelle Rycroft

Founder and Owner of Ripped By Rycroft

https://www.facebook.com/RippedbyRycroft

My #1 tip for eating healthy during weekend is to remember that Saturday and Sunday are just like any other day of the week.  Just because it’s the weekend, doesn’t mean our goals take time off like we do from our job.  Of course, what works best for me in order to live this out is to stick to a routine as much as possible.  I will prepare the same types of meals I have during the week.  This means heavy on the protein and veggies for 80-90% of my meals while also simultaneously allowing for some treats when the hubs and I go on date night or if we have a family gathering.  Skip the cheat meal and perfection pitfalls and instead practice mindfulness around the weekend just being an extension of the “work week”.


Melanie Lund

Founder and Owner of Real Strong Mom

https://www.facebook.com/realstrongmom/

 

Eating on the weekends, at events, parties, in the summer, and on vacation.. CAN and SHOULD be just the same as everyday. If you are enjoying what you eat today and everyday then there will be less binging and no restricting. This is a lifestyle of eating food you love ALL of the time with balance and moderation. Using balance and moderation means that we eat the same during the week as we do on the weekends. It also means we enjoy the foods we love moderately and often instead of binging them. So my #1 tip here is to follow the 80/20 rule everyday. Eat nutritious foods 80% of the time and allow yourself to indulge the other 20% of the time.


Jennifer Mickendrow

Founder and Owner of Fit Mom Strong Mom

https://www.facebook.com/Fitmomstrongmom/

My #1 tip for eating healthy on weekends is to make sure you keep drinking your water! Often times weekends are filled with birthday parties, weddings, or date nights and those events usually include foods high in sugar, fat, and salt…(and let’s not forget alcohol!) Keeping your water intake up will help you from overindulging or if you do happen to overindulge it will help you through your food hangover the next day.



Melanie Knights

Founder and Owner of Melanie Knights

https://www.facebook.com/melanieknights87/

 

My #1 tip for you is to stop allowing the weekend to hold so much power over your choices. With the traditional low calorie diets, and these plans where you show up each week to be weighed in [ahem no names] there is this common theme where you are encouraged to save your calories, points or syns and then use them throughout the weekend. This just sets most people up for failure, because you’re being encouraged to binge, and it’s sooooooooo much more difficult to get ‘back on track’ come Monday morning, isn’t it?

If instead you actually practice getting the basics in place [veggies, lean protein, water] first, it is way easier to progress to a place of moderation throughout the week. The more you sprinkle these ‘fun foods’ into your diet, the easier it is to not need the 48 hour binge each week.

You’ll eventually find you won’t need to fuel your restriction on a weekend, because you’re satisfied 7 days a week.


Meredith Diglio

Founder and Owner of LOV Fitness 

https://www.facebook.com/lovfitnessclub/

 

Stay true to your style of eating…no different than any other day 😉.

 

 

 


Sarah E Howard

Founder and Owner of S.E. How I Do It Fitness

https://www.facebook.com/SEHowIDoItFit/

I eat the same way during the weekend as during the week. Dates usually happen Friday or Saturday, so I’ll eat something different then, but I get right back to my regularly scheduled food the next meal.

 

 

 


 

 

Janel Wilson Sack

Founder and Owner of Janel Sack Movement

https://www.facebook.com/JanelSackMovement/

Practice moving away from the “I’ll start on Monday” mindset that allows us to eat whatever we want all weekend, but ultimately makes us unhappy in the long run. It won’t happen over night, or in one weekend, and you must practice to get there. Allow your self the things you want, glass of wine, chocolate, salty chips, but practice doing so in a way that doesn’t have you needing to “start over” with restrictive eating on Monday


 

Sarah Wright Gossett

Founder and Owner of Flexed and Focused: Fitness After 40

https://www.facebook.com/flexedandfocused/

Eating real food, aka pizza or a burger, but only if I’m hungry, no finishing stuff if I’m not truly hungry or just “getting rid of it”. The disposal can truly get rid of stuff if you just can’t stand to have it around. Or the dog!

 

 


 

 

Stacey Dimmler

Founder and Owner of Fixed on Food

https://www.facebook.com/fixedonfood/

If you remove the extremes associated with any diet plan, the weekend becomes just another day. A Monday is just like a Saturday when you allow yourself to eat without a strict set of rules that drive you to the point of feeling deprived. Listen to your body, eat when you’re hungry, eat what you’re hungry for and fully enjoy it, and stop when you’re satisfied- every day of the week.


 

 

 

Kande Jones

Founder and Owner of Literally Healthy with Kande

https://www.facebook.com/literallyhealthywithkande/

 Easy peasy and no cleanup! I live for quick and easy or else I will end up at the drive-thru all day, everyday. This is my new fave “recipe”.Basically, in my “expert” opinion, don’t let your fear of doing it the “wrong” way keep you from doing it how you want. I think microwaveable meals get a bad wrap sometimes because people think cheat foods or junk food, but there’s a growing market for healthy stuff that isn’t artificially juiced with a ton of sodium. We have to get out of the 90’s 00’s mindset of what microwaveable food used to be.But I also “cooked” Little Caesar’s Hot and Ready last night, because balance. No shame in my mom game.


 

 

Stacy Hobson

Founder and Owner of Fat 2 Fitabulous Stacy Hobson

https://www.facebook.com/fat2fitabulous/

My #1 tip for eating healthy on the weekends is to pick 3 food  goals that are easily attainable for you, as well as ridiculously simple, and make them a non-negotiable for your day.  For example, I choose to make sure that I am getting a serving of protein and water at each meal, and at least one serving of veggies for that day. For example, breakfast I may shoot for scrambled eggs with some cheese, then for lunch I may go for a salad with some chicken or lunch meat or fried chicken strips on top (protein + veggies), and then for supper I may choose to have some pizza with the family (with some pepperoni or ham on it because protein), or barbecue pork with a side of sweet potato fries (again protein), or chicken tacos on a corn tortilla (protein here again).

It’s not about ever being perfect (because let’s face it, perfect doesn’t actually exist), but it’s more about doing our best for that day, having some balance in our life, and not feeling so damn restricted all the time. Enjoying pizza with our family or tacos for dinner is not going to ruin our progress.  It’s one meal. That’s eat.  We don’t get fat from one meal, just like we don’t lose weight from one meal.  Progress comes with being consistent.  Consistent just means showing up about 80% of the time focusing on eating healthy foods that we freaking love to eat; so much so that we just do it without really thinking too hard about it.  Then the remaining 20% we are living our life and enjoying that ice cream cone with our kids; Saturday night pizza nights with the family, margaritas and tacos with the girls.  Once we begin to let go of this whole “perfectionist mindset” and thinking that we have to follow this meal plan that was created for a one size fits all crowd in order to reach our weight and fat loss goals, is when we truly start to ease up, stress less, and actually see these results that we have been so desperately trying to achieve.  Just remember to *KISS*:  Keep It Super Simple!  The easier it is, the more we do it, the sooner the results come!!    


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We’ve got to start Removing the Rules

 

I seriously can’t believe what I saw  when this drink was released!

So many people are getting their panties in a bunch over a drink.

Sharing this graphic (that has been shared on SM so much yesterday) is contributing to the problem, not solving it.
Sharing this & acting like this is “bad” food and stating that they are going to stay away from this because “team healthy” isn’t being healthy.
It’s disordered thinking when it comes to food; being so restrictive and labeling food is a disordered way of eating and is a disordered mentality when it comes to viewing food and our relationship with food.
Acting like food is the enemy is a bunch of shit and I am just over it. I am tired of this way of thinking being thrown around and making sure that people are “educated.”
Guess what? Sharing an image like this is not educating the public. It isn’t making them “aware”.
It’s just adding more fuel to the bullshit fire that surrounds the health & fitness industry.
Would I suggest having this drink every single day to my clients? Highly unlikely.
BUT, if my clients told me they totally tried one know what I would say? “That’s awe

some! I am so glad you had a treat! How was it?”
And yes, I am a CERTIFIED NUTRITION COACH & I totally encourage my clients to enjoy treats from time to time.
It’s called living life.

People want to call certain foods the villain; they want to create all of these rules and put the fear of food god into people.

No wonder diets thrive so hard.  People are not going to let these quick fixes go anytime soon. And due to the ways that a simple little thing is taken overboard shows just how little of education there is when it comes to food.

Our bodies don’t know the difference between sugar from a drink to sugar from fruit.  Sugar is sugar to our bodies and it will process it as such.  And while I do encourage my clients to eat more Whole Foods, a treat like this drink from Starbucks every once in a while is not going to ruin their progress. What it is going to do is allow them to feel freedom in their food choices and not have them feeling like they they are restricted to the point that they are going to go off on a huge binge.

Food is food.  Rules have a time and a place, but not when it comes to food.

It’s time to start removing the rules, getting more education on how to eat as a lifestyle and ditch this quick results bullshit once and for all.

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Good Enough instead of Perfect

 

Nutrition in the health and fitness world is a funny thing.  These meal plans that exist have everyone feeling as they they have to meet some sort of deadline every day with their food.

 

A meal plan is created with a list of the food that we are going to eat at every meal, complete with the measurements of how much food is to be eaten at each time.

 

So when someone goes to follow this, it isn’t considered to be a guide; it’s more like they believe it is set in stone.  

 

So even if they hate to eat certain foods that are listed, they eat them anyways.  IF they get hungry before they are to have their next meal, they white knuckle through it until it is time to eat again.

 

Because the meal plan said.

 

And if we stray from what the meal plan said then Oh no!  

 

What on earth are we going to do?  

 

Nothing.  Absolutely nothing.  

 

We are going to take it a meal at at time.  We are going to figure out what we are going to eat and move on with life.

 

Because nothing will happen whatsoever.

 

Meal plans are guides.  That is it.  It is a suggestion of how we can try and create our meals, but it isn’t a hard and fast rule.  All of our bodies are different and we are going to get hungry differently; we are going to process foods differently.

 

And let’s get real.  We like foods differently.

 

So there is no way that a meal plan that is created is a “one size fits all”.

 

I am not even sure one size fits all is even a true statement when it comes to, well, anything! Haha.

 

So we need to take the time to investigate.  Learn the basic principles of sound nutrition.  Learn basic cooking skills. Play with seasonings.

 

Take the time to see if the hype over Kale is for real.

 

Because if we don’t love how our food tastes; if we don’t enjoy it then after a while we are not going to eat it.  And then guess what?  We are going to drive through McDonald’s and pick up a number 1 with fries and a sweet tea.

 

Then we are right back into that damn diet cycle where we “fall off the wagon.”

 

And all because we were trying really hard to follow a meal plan that promised us results because we got really sick and tired of the way we looked and the way we felt.  

 

So instead of trying to follow something exactly the way it is written, take what you love, throw out what you don’t, and make that good enough. If it called for Kale, but you really love corn, then eat the corn and not the kale.

 

Because whatever we like, we will keep doing.  And that has to be good enough. Because if it is what gets us to being consistent?  Well then that is a breakthrough in and of itself!

 

If this resonates with you and you are looking for a way to simplify exercise and nutrition so that it fits within your life to finally reach your goals, then download my FREE Healthier U Get Started Kit!  With 4 total workouts plus nutrition guidance, it’s the the guide you have been waiting for!

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Limiting Factor #1: FOOD CHOICES

 

Most of my dieting years were stuck behind fads and phases.  I followed what Cosmopolitan said I should be doing to “feel sexy and lose weight in so many days.”

I mean, a magazine wouldn’t actually LIE to me, right?? 😉

Anyways, I was just stuck in the same cycle over and over and over again.  I was counting calories, I was doing cardio, I was restricting the “bad” food and choosing more of the “good” food that I had read so much about.

And yet, my progress was minimal, and then I would become stagnant.  

I never really understood it honestly.  I would follow exactly what was told to me to a T, until I would feel so restricted and controlled that I would eventually break and go hog wild on all the things that I was told that I couldn’t have.

I honestly felt like a prisoner in my own life.  I kept wondering how any of this was going to make me feel alive and happier again, and yet I would continue to do it because, well, I didn’t think I actually knew the right way.  And since this was advertised as being the very best way to handle this situation, and that was what everyone was doing, and the magazines and internet said so, well, I would go for it.

I fell for this shit every single time!

Even in the beginning of this journey I started back in 2013.

THe only difference between then and now is that I may have started out this way, but I chose to learn more and take that knowledge and apply it to my own life.

I didn’t want the short term quick fixes any longer. I wanted to be like this for life!

What we don’t realize when we embark on this journey is that we can sabotage our own efforts without even realizing it.  There are limiting factors that can go into not receiving results like we would like to see, and while we can work to be doing all the right things in our own minds, there are actually quite a lot of things that we are missing that we don’t even think about, because we are so focused on just the nutrition and exercise portion of it.

But like I always say, they is so much more to this than food and movement.  We have to work in just as much as we work out, and our mindset is a huge factor in all of this.

So today I am going to share the first of eight limiting factors that, that are actually quite common for us all, but we don’t actually realize it.


Limiting factor #1: Food choices.

Ok, so this one is one of the obvious ones, but not as obvious as one might think; especially if we are calorie counting by doing my fitness pal or doing weight watchers or just tracking our calories on a sheet of paper.

Food Choices:

  • Eating too many processed foods

  • Not eating enough nutritious, whole, minimally processed foods

  • Not meeting basic nutrition needs (macronutrients and micronutrients)

  • Getting Dehydrated

  • Drinking too many sugar-sweetened drinks

  • Drinking too much alcohol; “drunkorexia”

  • Not feeling satisfied by their meals

Here’s the problem.  Processed foods make it really hard for us to know when we are physically hungry or full.  It is easy to overeat them, and we still want more of it (which is how they are designed). And because we are eating so many processed foods, we are not eating enough nutrient-rich, whole, minimally processed foods like fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains, beans and legumes, whole, fresh cuts of meat or poultry,etc.

And here is the kicker out of all of this.  Eating too many processed foods in the culprit for all the other food choices listed.  

And let’s face it, everywhere we look there is a damn commercial for processed foods.  They even make some of these foods appear to be healthy by saying they are high in fiber or protein, etc.

So how do we get past this?  

We have to just keep it simple, make it easy, and take it one step at a time.  We can’t just say screw processed foods and go all or nothing.  We both know where that ends up taking us.

Instead, we need to focus on just a little bit better.  So for instance here is how we can make this easy and doable for every day moms like us.

  • Buy pre-washed vegetables or salad greens

  • Ready-to-eat vegetables

  • Fresh, easy prep fruit (like apples or fresh berries) or pre-cut fruit like pineapple or melon.

  • Canned beans or lentils

  • A whole rotisserie chicken

  • Boiling up a pot of eggs or potatoes to have on hand

  • Whole grains done overnight in the slow cooker

  • Buy frozen steamable bagged veggies and frozen fruit

Plus learning some cooking and food prep techniques like:

  • Using a slow cooker

  • Chop and store vegetables in bulk

  • Roast or grill meat or vegetables

  • Steam vegetables

  • Make a super shake

  • Make a basic salad

It is all about knowledge.  We have to learn this new way of life we are trying to make for ourselves.  And while this feels very uncomfortable and can throw us into discomfort mode super quick, we have to remember that we are a beginner, this is new, and we have to take it one step at a time.  There is no reason to go and do this all at once; it is just learning to replace the processed foods a little here and there with the more nutritious options.

So, we need to pick one thing, get really super good at it, and then before we know it, it becomes a part of us.  And then, we just choose the next thing and go from there.

I know this can seem like a super daunting thing, and reading this list right away can make us feel like we need to do all of this right now this very moment.  But we don’t have to.  It isn’t necessary actually.  We will still be making our progress and getting results.  But we have to also learn to be extremely patient with this process and take the time we need.  BEcause we didn’t gain the weight over night, we didn’t put on the fat over night.  This was due to years and years of the habits that we once had.  So now we have to work slowly, to start making these changes.  

The results will come.  Maybe not as quick as we would like, but they will happen sooner than you might believe.

Have faith and trust yourself and most of all, learn to trust this process.  

 

 

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It’s SUPER IMPORTANT to like how We Eat!

Most of us have typical goals we are trying to accomplish when it comes to losing weight and changing our body composition.

 

We want things like:

 

  • More Energy
  • Feeling Better
  • Look Better
  • Lose Weight
  • Lose Body Fat
  • Get in shape and tone up
  • Get stronger
  • Have more energy and vitality
  • Learn regular health and sustainable habits
  • Sleep better, etc

 

But making all these changes to reach these kind of goals?  TOTALLY OVERWHELMING when we think about it all!   Because all we can think about is the end result, and just how badly we want to be there; like, RIGHT THIS MOMENT!

 

So many times we want to do a total life overhaul.  We want it right now this very instant!  And most of the time, we will do almost anything to get there.

 

Which is the very reason why I alone have done so many diets, tried the quick fixes, tried the programs that promised me that I would lose X amount of weight in 21 days or a month. I desperately wanted to look and feel better, and I really thought this was the ONLY way to do it.

 

I get it. We want it and we want it right now.  But, this weight we have gained and the fat we have accumulated, we have been living with certain habits for many years now haven’t we?  We have been eating out for dinner, we have been eating many processed foods, we have not been feeling satisfied by our meals and drinking too many sugar-sweetened drinks.

 

Not only this, but each of us have been eating too quickly and while we are distracted, we have been practicing irregular eating habits and having trouble recognizing our physical hunger and fullness cues.

 

As well as the eating we do when we are stressed and feeling sad, mad, happy, etc.

 

We haven’t been doing all of these things just recently, right??  Of course not!  We have ALL been doing these things for YEARS.

 

I mean, this has been our actual LIFE.  This is how we live EVERY SINGLE DAY.

 

So if we take the time to think about this, to think about the food choices we make every single day, we need to ask ourselves WHY?  Why do we eat this each day?  What is the reason that we do this?

 

And most importantly, do we even LIKE HOW WE ARE EATING?

 

Even if we think these things taste delicious, we never really love how we are eating.  We are eating this way for many other reasons besides liking it.

 

We are busy, we are stressed, we don’t actually understand the basics of nutrition, we don’t know the basics of cooking or having the confidence in the kitchen; not having basic shopping and food awareness skills, etc.

 

I honestly could list a ton of things but I think you get the idea.  

 

But as much as all of these things seem to hinder us in the beginning (and more than likely our excuses as well), we can totally change this.

 

It wasn’t that long ago that I too, was a beginner in all of this.  I had no idea what I was doing or what direction this was going to take me.  All I knew is that I wanted to make this change; I HAD TO MAKE THIS CHANGE.  I had finally told myself there was no valid excuse for the way I was treating my body, and myself. And while I did not believe for a moment that I deserved better (at that time), I knew that I did as I felt it in every single fiber of my own soul.

 

So, I took action.  I obtained knowledge, I tried different things. Found what worked for a while and what didn’t.  

 

It is total trial and error.  

 

But now I have arrived at a place where I love the way that I eat.  I love the food choices I make and because of this, it has become a total no brainer to fix my meals.  I don’t even have to give it another thought honestly. And that is all because I have found the types of foods that I think taste delicious, and prepare them as such.

 

Best part?

 

This “liking how I eat” gig actually has given me the most progress to date.  I am nourishing my body and giving it what it needs on the daily, BUT, I am also enjoying it so much that i just can’t imagine eating any other way!

 

So I can honestly say that I can do this every day…for LIFE.

And THAT is what we always need to ask ourselves through the process.  Do I love this?  Is this easy and attainable?  Can I see myself doing this for life?  If you answer NO to ANY of these questions, then it isn’t a good fit for you.  So get rid of it, and keep working until you find what you love.

 

I promise that once you do, you will totally know. Because it won’t feel so much like work. 😉  And that is when we know we have made the change we have been searching for!

 

So keep pushing on, keep failing forward, and definitely don’t give up!  Good things always come to those who wait!
If this resonates with you & you are ready to finally learn how to eat in a way that you actually LOVE and can live with for the rest of your life, then grab my FREE Healthier U Get Started Guide where I share with you a list of healthy foods as well as how to take those healthy foods you enjoy eating and create a healthy meal each and every single time!

Best Part?  No guesswork as I have done the work for you! Woot!

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Diets are not the way

I used to follow diets.

I used to follow them a lot actually.

It was the only way I knew how to lose the weight at the time. It was what everyone else was doing and talking about. I recall friends trying a couple of the diets and having such amazing progress. They just seemed to look so happy too.

I mean, I wanted some of that!

So I would follow a diet. I have followed Weight Watchers, Atkins, Paleo, slim fast; counted my calories and counted my macros. Hell I even did the whole I am not eating and restricting so many things diet.

All of this did give me a bit of progress.

But only for a while.

It honestly didn’t do a whole lot for me except cause me anguish and make me feel like a complete and total failure.

And let’s be honest, we don’t really enjoy feeling this way. It was just a vicious cycle non-stop. I would begin, do well, fall off, feel like shit, start up again, do the same, and then say screw it and eat everything I could get my hands on.

It was pretty exhausting and made me feel like a loser. I honestly thought that I was going to be obese forever. I was never going to lose the weight and that I was just meant to be this way. I believed that for whatever reason I just didn’t have the magic that every else did when it came to hitting their own personal goals.

Now I know this is just a bunch of crap, but at the time I didn’t know. this was all I was ever told and what I always read. I didn’t know any other way, nor that there was a better and simpler way. And every one around me was doing the exact same thing as well. So how did I even know better?

And did I ever really enjoy dieting??

Hell NO I didn’t! I didn’t love it at all. The food always tasted bland and boring and I didn’t really enjoy being hungry all of the time. I thought that I had to just allow my stomach to shrink because I had eaten so much shit that I had enlarged it and being hungry was the process that I just had to deal with.

Yeah…NO.

Diets are short term. That is what they are meant to be. Just something to do for “right now”. Something to get us quick results because that is how we are in this world today. No longer do we seem to have the patience for taking our time and just being consistent. We want to feel good and look good right now in this very moment!

And while these feelings are a whole other topic in and of itself (and a topic for another time completely), let me just say that this is exactly why they exist.

We thrive on this. We want to be able to get instant results and so these things are created so we do. And once we get fed up then we are going to move on to the very next thing because this other diet didn’t work and this one promises to be different.

But it isn’t. It isn’t different whatsoever.

It is the same, just in different packaging.

As long as we stay on this cycle, we are not going to get very far at all. We are going to keep going and going and going until we learn to get educated and understand why this shit doesn’t work.

I know because I tried. I tried for many, many, MANY years.

It wasn’t until I finally learned a different approach; that I took the time to educate myself that I finally understood why I needed to create my own plan and stop trying to follow something that wasn’t fitting into my daily life.

The question that I would often ask myself would be, “Can I see myself doing this for life?”

If the answer was yes, then I would totally continue to do it. If the answer was no, I would toss it out and continue the work to find something that would.

First step to jump off this diet train?

Trust yourself. You need to trust yourself and trust that you can ultimately reach your goals. it isn’t following some plan. it is taking the time to learn who we are and what is needed in our life.

For example, do we love to cook and want to make time to meal prep on the weekend? Then totally do it if that is what helps you show up to eat healthy. However, if you don’t love to cook and aren’t all about that meal prep life then make it easy on yourself and spend the couple extra dollars to buy pre-cut fruits and veggies, pre-cooked chicken like rotisserie chickens. Buy minute white rice in the cups for easy to cook access.

My point is that we have to do what works for us and our life. That is the only way this is going to work. Otherwise we are going to be going in circles non stop until we finally lose our shit and say screw this I am done.

And we deserve more than this. We deserve to understand that we don’t have to follow some special plan. That we can eat whatever we enjoy in a healthy manner, cook it in a way that is delicious to us, and then just keep doing more of THAT.

Trust me. I know that you have what it takes. We all do. we just have to step out of the shadow of the millions of dollars that the fitness industry is trying to make off of us instead of teaching us the right way to handle this.

 

 

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