Thursday, May 28, 2015

Help My Kid is Overweight! 9 Tools to Help a Child Achieve a HealthyWeight




How to Build a Kid's Healthy Weight Toolbox

When working with children to achieve a healthy weight it is important to use a "toolbox approach" instead of a narrow linear one. A toolbox approach is to gather tools and ideas that you can collect, sharpen and polish and use in different stages and times in life. Our children will grow into adults and will soon learn that life is full of twists and turns. The more tools they have to achieve and maintain a healthy weight the better equipped they will be to succeed through life's challenges.

A tool is an attitude, habit, environmental feature or action that can help us achieve our goals. If you find that one tool works better than others temporarily it is okay to focus on using that tool to the fullest while trying to continually build other tools in order to solidify behaviors. You may discover that one tool is more effective than others and makes all the difference. Most likely, however, you will need and use several tools to help your child obtain and maintain a healthy weight. No matter your child's age it is wise to focus on building an entire tool box which will help provide a scaffolding to hold your child's positive behaviors in place. 

9 healthy weight tools are listed below.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Marathon Monday

Today I wanted to write a quick blog post about marathons. I should call this post, "How to Run a Marathon in 4 Easy Steps." ;) But there's really no easy way to run a marathon actually because....

"Running a marathon is like having a baby."
- Merri K. Hackett

Step 1 - Pick a race and register

Just like when deciding to have a baby, you and your spouse have to talk about it. Is this marathon during a good time? Is your spouse willing and able to support you? When you can both agree, it's go time!
This is one of my pinterest boards. It's great to register early because you get in a lot cheaper. So I save my races here and refer back to it often.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Chocolate Protein Waffles


This recipe is modified from Heidi Powell's protein waffles and from our very own protein pancakes! Super good combo and packed with a protein punch.

Serves 4

Ingredients:
1 cup cottage cheese
4 eggs
1 cup water
4 teaspoon olive oil
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 2/3 cup oatmeal
2 teaspoon baking powder
1 tbsp Cocoa
1 tbsp chocolate protein powder

I just throw all of my ingredients into my blendtec and blend until smooth! You can also store these in the fridge or freezer and pop them in the toaster when you're ready to eat them.

Sometimes I take frozen berries and melt them in the microwave and then drizzle on top. Other times I put some healthy whipped cream and berries. Sometimes I will drizzle a little agave with some berries and bananas! Kid tested and mom approved!

Merri

Friday, May 15, 2015

Fiesta Lime Cauliflower Rice


On Mother's Day my sister in law invited our family over for Tacos. She said I could bring whatever I had on hand. I wanted to bring something that would go well with tacos. And here's what I came up with! Super good and good for you! Although it might be a bit hot/spicy for some. It just depends on what RoTel you use.

1 head cauliflower
Cilantro
RoTel tomatoes (or generic brand)
1 Can black beans - drained and rinsed
1 Cup frozen corn

Shred cauliflower with a food processor or salad shooter. Cook in microwave safe dish, covered for 4 minutes. (I had some cauliflower rice already pre-made in my fridge.) Put caulirice into a sauce pan, add the rest of the ingredients and cook until heated through. I think garlic would have been a nice addition as well.

Leave me a comment if you tried this recipe! I would love to hear what you think.

Merri

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Avocado Cheese Burger Salad

This salad was so good! It was seriously better than a cheese burger!!!  This recipe is really a burger without the bun and a lot more lettuce.

Grilled turkey burger
Chopped lettuce
Scoop of avocado
Ketchup
Mustard
Mozzarella cheese

I grilled a turkey burger on my foreman grill.  Once it was done I cut it into smaller pieces and put it into a bowl. I added my chopped lettuce, a scoop of mashed up avocado, a squirt of ketchup, a squirt of mustard, and some low fat mozzarella cheese. I stirred it all together and it was yummy! A diced tomato and/or some onions would be great as well! Think, "anything you would normally put on a burger can go in this salad!"

~Merri

If you liked this recipe and want more healthy recipes fit for a family please sign up for my free meal plan here! 

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Lean and Green Caulirice Chicken Salad

This recipe comes from Susan's sister Jackie. It's lean and green and looks super tasty!!!


Directions:

Cilantro lime caulirice
lettuce
grilled chicken
protein ranch (fat free cottage cheese blended with a packet of ranch and a little milk)

Cilantro lime caulirice on the bottom of the plate, top with lettuce and grilled chicken. Dressing is a homemade healthier protein ranch.

290 cal 18 carbs, 39 protein and 4.2 fat.

If you liked this recipe and want more healthy recipes fit for a family please sign up for my free meal plan here! 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Cilantro Lime Cauli-rice

Cilantro Lime Cauli-rice (cauliflower rice)
Serves 4




Ingredients:
2 Cup Cauli-rice (cauliflower made to look like rice)
2 tsp lime zest
4 Tbsp fresh lime juice
3/4 C chopped cilantro

Directions:
Take 1 head cauliflower and chop finely with a food processor, salad shooter, food chopper or a knife. Put in microwaveable glass bowl cover and cook WITHOUT water for approximately 4 to 5 minutes. 

Stir the lime zest, lime juice, and cilantro into the cooked cauliflower rice just before serving.

If you liked this recipe and want more healthy recipes fit for a family please sign up for my free meal plan here! 

Monday, May 11, 2015

Meal Plan Monday

The Benefit of Small Frequent Meals

We have heard it for years, “small frequent meals help with metabolism and are better for digestion”. New research shows that meals that have roughly the same amount of calories and are eaten at the same time each day are even more beneficial in training the body to burn calories.

Make sure you are using correct measurements! Get out the measuring cups for items that need to be measured!

Example Meal Plan

7 am Post workout - Chocolate Banana Smoothie, 250 cal

8 am Breakfast - Jalepeno Eggs, 280 cal

10 am Snack - Cheese wrapped in lunch meat & a fruit, 175 cal

1 pm Lunch - 2 Cucumber boats, 250 cal

3 pm Snack - Almond Churro mix and fruit, 219 cal

5 pm Dinner - Chili, 250 cal

8 pm night time - Greek yogurt, 130 cal

For a free 2 week pdf Meal Plan Fit for a Fam, just enter your name and email below. An awesome download will be emailed to you almost immediately.

Happy Healthy Eating!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Motivation and Balance


Recently a friend shared the following and asked a question that I am sure a lot of us have wondered.


"I am struggling with my motivation to keep those healthy habits lately. Juggling a busy home life with growing children, homeschooling, church work, etc., it feels so overwhelming! I feel like I don't have the energy to keep a food journal, exercise more than 30 min, etc. 
How do you stay balanced? How do you keep motivated when your enthusiasm wanes? What do you use to reward yourself that is budget-friendly & non-food related? Please share!"
Here was my answer:

How do I usually stay balanced? One thing I know for sure is if I don't make exercise a priority then something else will take its place. In order to have balance in my life I actually have to fight for my exercise time other wise everything is off balance because I won't get it in. I have to do it first thing in the morning because once the kids are up my "me time" is history.

Is it selfish? I wouldn't send my kids across the county in a broken down vehicle. I would make the maintenance of the vehicle a priority because their safety and health hinges on it. The same is with me. I'm the vehicle of my children's childhood. One of the best things I can do to improve their environment is to stay healthy strong and happy and it directly impacts them for the better.



Rewards don't work for me. I'm not sure why but social pressure does. If I have someone waiting on me I am more likely to go because I don't let people down. If I tell someone about my goals and report back then I'm more likely to keep them. 

I've heard of people doing personal photo shoots and cruises. One girl bought a cute workout out fit that was just a tiny bit small for her and she hung it where she could see it.

What are some great ideas you have for keeping motivation and balance?

Happy healthy habits!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Chocolate Covered Strawberries Protein Shake

In honor of Mother's Day on Sunday, I wanted to share a healthy version of chocolate covered strawberries! Call this her breakfast in bed! I know the cup is pretty cool, but really it's what's inside that counts. :)


Ingredients:
1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1/4 banana
1/4 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)
2 tbsp chocolate protein powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tbsp cocoa
1 squirt of agave or other natural sweetener
1/2 cup ice

Blend well and enjoy!

Merri

If you liked this recipe and want more healthy recipes fit for a family please sign up for my free meal plan here! 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Healthy Chicken Enchilada Soup Recipe

Here's a picture of a bulk prep I did for my husband and me. It's chicken enchilada soup and salsa chicken with red potatoes and green beans. Both are delicious!


Chicken Enchilada Soup

Ingredients:
5 chicken breasts
1 can diced tomatoes
two small cans or one large can of mild green enchilada sauce
1-2 cans chicken broth
1 small can of diced green chilies
2 small zucchini diced thin
1 cup frozen corn
1 tsp cumin
6-8 green onions chopped finely
salt to taste
1/2 to 1 bunch of cilantro, all dumped in a crock pot.

The chicken breast I used was frozen so mine took 8 hours- it made 10 servings an I'm guessing it is almost 20 grams of protein but I'm not sure on the carbs or fat yet. Both will be pretty minimal.

I like that it tastes even better the 2nd and 3rd day after they flavors are all set. You can also add beans if you would like.

Salsa Chicken
Get your favorite salsa, pour over frozen chicken breast in crock pot, then cook on low 8 hours.

Reader question: How long will cooked chicken, etc stay good in the fridge? Mine always gets tossed before I eat it all!

Answer: It seems like mine loses its taste after three days. These meals are split between me and my hubby so we each have 5 days worth of two of our meals a day. I have a friend who cooks all of her chicken then freezes half of it and on the third day thaws it out. I find that slow cooked meats seem to taste better longer in the fridge. But that is just my opinion.

If you liked this recipe and want more healthy recipes fit for a family please sign up for my free meal plan here! 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Lean Beef Salsa Salad

This was by far one of the yummiest meals I've ever had! That includes healthy and non healthy meals!


Ingredients:
2.3 oz of Slow cooked extra lean beef simmered in salsa and flavored with homemade taco seasoning.

Cilantro protein low calorie ranch which was to die for!

All on a bed of greens garnished with red sweet peppers.

I may or may not have licked the plate!

Calories- 234, protein-24, carbs-10, fat-9
Nutrition Stats include 1/4 cup of the ranch

Happy Healthy Eating!
Susan

If you liked this recipe and want more healthy recipes fit for a family please sign up for my free meal plan here! 

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Frozen Protein Fudge Bar

This was a yummy closet treat I had tonight. I call it a closet treat since I made only one and all the kids wanted it so I had to eat it in secret. Even though I told them it was made of cottage cheese! I'll make more next time!
Frozen Protein Fudge Bar
Ingredients
1/2 C Cottage Cheese
1 Tbsp PB2 Powder
2 g sugar free chocolate jello powder
Sweetener to taste

Instructions:

Blend until smooth and freeze!
Calories 103, Carbs 9, Fat 1, Protein 15

Happy Healthy Eating!


Susan


If you liked this recipe and want more healthy recipes fit for a family please sign up for my free meal plan here! 

Monday, May 4, 2015

A Day With Healthy Habits

Are you curious about what an average day looks like when you're trying to be healthy? Here's a basic layout sample. Of course you can modify to it to fit your needs. You might need more or less calories, protein, water, etc. 



Basic Day layout Sample:

Early morning workout 

Meals and  Goal Calories 

7 am Post workout 250 cal Example: Chocolate Spinach Protein Shake

8 am Breakfast 250 cal ExampleProtein Pancakes

10 am Morning Snack 150 cal Example: String Cheese wrapped in a 45 calorie slice of turkey and a piece of fruit.

1 pm Lunch 250 cal Example: Grilled Chicken Avocado Wrap

3 pm Afternoon Snack 150 cal Example: Cheese and Veggies. Laughing cow cheese wedge light variety (30 cal) and veggies. 

5 pm Dinner 300 cal Example: Cilantro Lime Fajitas 

8 pm Night Snack 150 cal Example: Plain Greek yogurt with 1 gm or less of sugar free jello and a sugar substitute to sweeten. Eat soft or prepare beforehand by blending and freezing to make ice cream. OR use Dannon Greek vanilla flavored yogurt.

Total Calories: 1500-1600 cal 
Total Protein Goal: 120 grams 
Total Carb Goal: Below 150 grams 

Daily Habits 
 10 min meditation and mental plan 
 64 oz water minimum
 Sleep 7.5 - 9 hours 
 Exercise 6 Days 
 No Junk 
 No Cheat meals/licks, bites or tastes
 Veggies are free 

Once a week prep 
 Measurements: hips, waist, chest, body fat, weight 
 Before Picture 

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Chest workout for women

Back in the good old days Susan and I used to live by each other and we worked out together every day. We usually would meet at my house, run to the gym, lift and run home.  We were quite the site showing up to the gym with our big, bright reflector vests on. We were called crossing guards a lot and teased a little, but better safe than sorry.

I thought it would be fun to share a few of our weight lifting sessions with you.  Every day of the week we had assigned a different body part to.  Here's how we set it up. It doesn't really matter what order you go in. And honestly we were trying to work around a few other people in the gym and their workouts.  We wanted to make sure our "leg day" was not the same as others so we weren't fighting over equipment.

Monday - Shoulders
Tuesday - Arms (bicep/tricep)
Wednesday - Legs
Thursday - Back
Friday - Chest 
Saturday - Legs 

We would also throw a few ab workouts 2 times a week.

Today I'm sharing one of our chest workouts. We have lots of different workouts, we would vary them each Friday. Susan had a cool iPhone app she would use to help us think of new ways to work the same muscle.


*Remember to always start with a warm up. We were already warmed up because remember we ran 2.5 miles to get to the gym.

Bench Press - 4 sets starting with 12 reps, 10 reps, 8 reps, 8 reps. The weight I used on this day was 55 lbs. 

Push ups - 4 sets again starting with 12 reps, 10, 8, 8

Chest squeeze with low round up (we always laughed at our technical names) - This is a little hard to explain and I tried to find a YouTube video, but I am so unimpressed with the raunchy dressed men/women in weight lifting videos. I am planning on having someone film me doing this tomorrow and I'll upload the video.

I used 30 lbs and did the 12, 10, 8, 8 rep like above. You stand in between to adjustable cables. bring your hands (squeezing your chest) together to your waist then lift up to shoulder and go back to starting position.

Cable Scoop - 25 lbs with reps 12, 10, 8, 8
Similar to chest squeeze with low round up but this time lower the adjustable cables all the way to the floor. Grab the cables and scoop your arms up to chest height and repeat. Usually this piece of gym equipment is in front of a mirror and you will see your chest muscles pop! If I can't find a video for you I will have some one film me doing it.

Abs:
Knees up abs
We actually did this on a taller machine. And started with no weights, the next set we held an 8 lb dumbbell between our feet for 10 reps, then next we held a 10 lbs dumbbell for 8 reps and the last 8 reps we held a 12 lbs dumbbell between our feet. 

At the end or our weight session we would do a burn out. This day it was a fly 15 reps 7 times.



By the time you're finished you should literally be burned out!!!! Don't forget to cool down and stretch.

I hope you enjoyed this little snippet into our chest workout for women! More workouts will be coming so share this with a friend and we'll keeping bringing you great tips and tricks for women and weights.

Merri

We are currently in the middle of creating a 7 Day Weight Lifting Guide for Women. If you would like to be one of the first to receive this FREE pdf file, just enter your name and email below!
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