6 Meals To Add To Your Weekly Meal Prep

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Today is Meal Prep Monday! Sometimes I prep on Sunday, it honestly just depends on when I’m able to make it to the store. Here is what I am eating this week. Hopefully this will give you ideas for this week or your future meal prep! I’m also sharing what time of the day I eat everything.

5:45am Breakfast: Protein Coffee.
I usually drink this on the way to work. I’m not super hungry when I wake up in the morning (at 4:30am!), so this will hold me over until my break time where I eat an actual meal. If you are starving when you wake up in the morning, then this probably won’t keep you full for very long!
Here is how I make it:
6oz cold coffee (I make mine the night before and put it in the fridge for the next morning)
6oz unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 scoop of vanilla protein powder (I use LadyBoss Lean, but you can use any kind)
1 splash of sugar free hazelnut Torani.
Just mix all the ingredients in a shaker cup and enjoy! I have found that if I mix the protein powder with the almond milk first it mixes better!

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8:00am Snack: Overnight Protein Oats.
I usually prep this only 2 days out so the fruit doesn’t go bad. It’s super filling and lasts me for hours!
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
1 tablespoon peanut butter or almond butter
3 sliced strawberries or any fruit (or more to your liking)
First, combine the oats, almond milk and protein powder. Mix well until the protein powder clumps are gone. Add peanut butter and mix well. Top with Strawberries. Let sit overnight in the fridge and enjoy the next day! No need to heat, these are meant to be eaten cold!

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12:00pm Lunch: Spinach Salad and Skinny Pop popcorn.
I have made this for my lunch almost every week! It’s so good and super easy to make. I can also prep it for the whole work week. Here is how to make the salad:
2 cups spinach
1/4 cup diced chicken
6 baby carrots, chopped
1/4 cup chickpeas
1 tablespoon feta cheese
1/2 tablespoon sunflower seeds (without the shells)
2 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette (I like the Panera one!)

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4:00pm Snack: Rice Cakes and Peanut Butter
I usually eat this after my workout! If I’m really hungry after work then I will eat it before I workout. I may also have a One Bar or Larabar!

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6:00pm Dinner: Crockpot Taco Chicken Chili.
*Makes enough for 2 people for about 3-4 days.
Perfect for cold days and easy to make!
6 thin sliced chicken breasts (or 3 large ones)
1 package frozen corn
4 cans Rotel with green chilies
1 15oz can tomato sauce, no salt added
1 15oz can black beans
1 packet low sodium taco seasoning
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
Add all ingredients in Crock Pot besides the chicken and mix well. Once all ingredients are mixed, add the chicken and make sure it is completely covered by the mixture. Cook on high for 4 hours (possibly 5 if you have larger chicken breasts). After it is finished, remove the chicken and pull apart with forks. Add the chicken back into the Crock Pot and mix well. Cook for an additional 30 minutes on high.

7:30pm Snack: Halo Top or Dark Chocolate
I don’t usually make anything for my last snack of the day. Sometimes I don’t even need one, just depends on if I am craving something sweet after dinner. But I usually just have 1 serving of Halo Top or 2 squares of dark chocolate. I always make sure my dark chocolate is 70% cacao or more.

I buy all my groceries at Walmart and sometimes Aldi. In the spring and summer I try to get my fruits and veggies from the farmers market on the weekend. My meal prep usually stays the same every week, besides the dinner. I’m always looking for new meal ideas, so feel free to share them with me!

Do you enjoy seeing food posts like this? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

Valerie

25 Weight Loss Tips To Start Now

25 Weight Loss Tips

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As most of you know, I have been going through a weightloss journey since January. So far I am down around 48 pounds! I have about 20 more to lose (or maybe a bit less). Keep in mind I’m repurposing these photos! I took them back in July, and have lost quite a bit since then!

Before I decided to finally take charge of my health, I had no self confidence whatsoever. I would always wear baggy clothes to cover myself up, and would eat junk food because that’s what would make me happy. I had an unhealthy relationship with food. One day I went into Target and tried on dresses for an event I had coming up, and nothing would fit me. I had enough and decided it was time to change. I started after New Years and made it my resolution to finally get my body confidence back up, and I never looked back. My New Years resolution turned into a lifestyle that I don’t plan on giving up. My confidence is coming back, I have more energy, and my time of the month is actually normal again. I made eating healthy and working out a habit, not something I dread every day.

Because I have been doing so well with my weightloss, I wanted to add more fitness posts to the blog and Instagram to motivate you to love your body again. I not only want to lose weight, but I want to be toned and have muscle as well. Which is why I don’t exactly have a goal weight. After the 10 months I have been doing this, I’ve learned quickly what works and doesn’t work, so I’m going to share some tips that will help you with your journey! Please keep in mind that everyone is different and some of these tips might not work for you! This is just what is currently working for me :).

  1. Throw out the scale. It lies. I weigh myself maybe once every two weeks. It’s best to measure yourself, because the scale can reflect everything from not using the restroom, or that time of the month.
  2. Lift weights! No you won’t get bulky, and it will help you lose inches faster!
  3. Keep workout equipment at home. This way you won’t have an excuse to not workout. (I only do workouts at home. Maybe someday I will join a gym again. I’ll share all my at home workout equipment in a future post.)
  4. Don’t beat yourself up after a bad meal. Just move on with your day like it never happened. DO NOT say you will start over tomorrow. Start over right away.
  5. Replace a meal or snack with a protein shake. I do this in the morning and mix it with my coffee to drink on the way to work, since I’m not usually hungry for a few hours after I wake up. (Here’s my recipe: 6 oz unsweetened vanilla almond milk, 1 scoop vanilla protein powder, 8 oz of coffee, or the large cup option on a Keurig. I make my coffee the night before so it’s cold in the morning.)
  6. Don’t deprive yourself. One cookie will not break your weight loss. But having multiple cookies multiple times a week will.
  7. Don’t keep unhealthy foods in the house. If your significant other insists, just have them hide it from you!
  8. Have a fitness planner. That way you can plan out your meals and workouts for the week and keep track of what you are eating.
  9. Join a community. This helped me the most! I’m in one on Facebook, and the support is what kept me going.
  10. Join or start a weightloss challenge online or with friends and coworkers.
  11. Watch a good show or listen to music while working out. I love watching Gossip Girl while I workout, haha!
  12. Set goals for EVERYTHING each week, like working out, drinking water, food, steps, ect.
  13. Reward yourself for hitting your weightloss goals (pounds or inches lost). I like rewarding myself with a new pair of shoes or a mani/pedi! Create a list of rewards to each goal and keep it on your fridge.
  14. Fitbit challenges! I join one every week with my coworkers. I also have a challenge for myself to get 250 steps every hour at work. This makes me get up and move around.
  15. Take supplements like probiotics and vitamins. I’ll share more in a future post about which ones I use and recommend.
  16. If you are having cravings after a meal, brush your teeth! It will help fight those pesky cravings.
  17. If you are starting to get hungry between meals, chew a piece of gum. I always have two packs of gum in my purse at a time! Haha.
  18. Workout 6 days a week. 5 days I lift weights and workout a certain part of my body, then do 30 minutes of cardio. On the 6th day I just do cardio and sometimes abs. I try to make sure and workout my abs 3 days a week and will just add it on to my workout. I’ll share more about my workout schedule in a future post! I’ll also start sharing my workouts for the day on Insta Stories, so make sure to check that daily.
  19. Walk to the farthest bathroom while at work (or do squats if you are at home).
  20. Prep all your food for the week. I usually pick Sunday or Monday. I’ll share more about this in a future post.
  21. Wash your face before and after you workout. I learned this the hard way after breaking out horribly once I started working out hard.
  22. Keep dark chocolate chips (at least 70%) on hand for chocolate cravings. This will help deter you away from a candy bar! Also, a little bit of dark chocolate a day is apparently good for your heart.
  23. Have cute workout clothes! It will help motivate you to workout. I’ll share some of my favorite places to find cute gear in a future post!
  24. Get plenty of sleep! I’m sure you have heard this multiple times, but it’s true.
  25. Follow fitness accounts on social media to keep you motivated.

I have so many more weight loss/fitness posts planned out for you that I can’t wait to share! If you have anything you would like to see, let me know! I’m always looking for ideas.

Do you have any tips for fitness/weightloss? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

Valerie

Gym Essentials For Men & Women

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Since the weather is getting nice, and summer is approaching, now is the time to step up your workout game. I’m going to show you some of my favorite products to keep in your gym bag for men and women!

Women:

1. C9 Sports Bra from Target: Since I am bigger in the chest area, a sports bra is key for me to have during a workout. When I received this bra from Influenster for testing purposes, I was skeptical because a lot of them don’t seem to work out for me. But after trying this one I fell in love. It was the perfect amount of support that I needed. It does run a tad small, so make sure you size up one size.

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IMG_23922. Not Your Mother’s Clean Freak Dry Shampoo: this stuff is perfect if you are trying to get a quick workout in before work, or have errands to run afterwards. Just spray it on your roots, and your hair looks like it was just washed! I use this on the days I don’t wash my hair.

3. Olay Makeup Remover Wipes: I love to use these to get the sweat off my face after a good workout. The travel size is perfect to throw in my gym bag or purse for on the go!

4. Water Bottle: Right now I’m loving infused water. I found this water bottle from Amazon! My favorite things to throw in there are lemons, cucumbers and mint leaves! So refreshing!

5. Headphones: I love my purple Beats by Dre! Music helps me get through a tough workout. What are some of your favorite songs to listen to while working out?

6. Workout Planner: I got this planner from Blogilates (sadly they are sold out). It helps me track my food consumption and my workouts!

7. Deodorant: I always use the Dove Refresh, and it keeps me dry all day and even during my workouts!

Men (from the viewpoint of my boyfriend 🙂 ):

1. Headphones: My boyfriend loves his Green Beats by Dre!

2. Shoes: Nike’s. They give the support you need for cardio and heavy lifting.

3. Deodorant: We received the Dove Men + Care Extra Fresh deodorant complimentary thanks to Influenster! If anyone knows my boyfriend, you know how picky he is with everything.  He likes the brands he uses, and never strays away from them. So when I asked him to test this, he was skeptical. I made sure he put it on before going to work (he moves around a lot at his job). He told me that the smell of the deodorant was very refreshing (I smelled it for myself, and loved it!). He also said that it kept him dry all day, and he would use it again!

What other things to do you like to keep in your gym bag? Let me know in the comments!

Valerie

C9 Sports Bra and Dove Men + Care Extra Fresh deodorant received complimentary for testing purposes thanks to Influenster. All opinions are my own.

Workout Time!

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Happy Tuesday, loves! I hope everyone had a great weekend. My bestie moved about two hours away from me, so I spent the weekend at her new place and visited some of her favorite wineries (this town is FULL of wineries). I had a blast, but I’m so sad she is so far away now. At least it’s an excuse for me to get out of town for a weekend!

I made a goal for myself to start being more active, and to walk/run more this fall (since it’s way too hot to do it now). To get myself motivated, I decided to do a little “fall” workout gear shopping! I’m really bad about motivating myself to workout, so I thought shopping would give me a little boost (and seeing this new gear sitting in my bedroom would haunt me).

To me, the perfect fall workout outfit consists of yoga pants (it’s hard to tell in the photo, but these pants have a light zebra print!), a light weight “dry fit” tee and jacket, and a pair of comfortable running shoes. I bought all of these a little while back, and are no longer in stock, so I tagged similar items!

Top // Jacket // Pants // Shoes

Have a great week!

XoXo Valerie