Ugh, yet another month has gone by since my last blog. Why can’t I blog more often? Oh ya, too much good TV at night to squeeze blogging in. Omg how lazy am I? Well, the good news is that since my last clean eating blog post I’ve developed quite the menu of clean recipes I’ve tried, loved, and want to share with you! And not only have I been cooking up a storm in the kitchen, I’ve also found a really great way to push myself in the gym (and at home!) and I’m really seeing results, so let’s get into it, shall we?
I like a challenge group
Since the summer I’ve been sporadically joining some free online challenge groups with a Beachbody friend of mine from the gym, which has been great. It takes the guess work out of what I’m going to do at the gym that day because I just show up and check in on Facebook to see what that day’s work out is supposed to be. More recently I’ve discovered these 30-day fitness challenge groups on Facebook popping up everywhere. I completed a 30 day push-up challenge a few weeks ago where we ended on 60 push-ups for the month and I definitely saw results in my arms after that. I used to never do push-ups so it was great to build up that strength and ability to do 60 in one sitting!
I’m currently in THREE challenge groups, including an ab challenge (Think: 115 sit-ups, 180 crunches, 62 leg lifts, and a 110 second plank — KILLER!), a squat challenge (150 tomorrow, yikes!), and an arm challenge. The month is nearly up with these groups so the reps are really high, which takes a good 30 minutes to complete the entire set from each challenge. I always start out my gym time with cardio, such as a 30 minute jog, 45 minutes on the elliptical, or a challenging hour long cycling class. I like to mix it up so I don’t get bored. I’ve really been seeing results from these challenge groups, feeling leaner everyday!
And to top off all of this activity, I’ve been sucked back into the dreaded Fitbit challenge groups!!! AHH!! I’ve been in them for a few months now but they haven’t been challenging and sometimes I win by like 20,000 steps in a “workweek hustle”. That’s no fun. In the mood for a challenge I started one with some of my top stepping friends 3 weeks ago, and it’s been a blood bath since!! LOL! I lost the first week by less than 2,000 steps and I was all; Hey, I didn’t start this challenge group for someone ELSE to win! SO I had to rematch the next week. And it was ON LIKE DONKEY KONG. I was a psycho bitch that week, hitting 105,000 steps in 5 days to reach the gold, THANK YOU VERY MUCH!! My sister-in-law was on my tail though, pushing me all the way to the finish line with 100,000 steps behind me. I LOVE the competition. As it turns out, I’m super competitive and I can easily lose my mind in these challenge groups, ha! I laugh with a devilish grin! Well, after that I was so ready for a break. Aaaaannnnddd then my sister-in-law rematched again! She wanted to win! So I just finished my 3rd week of Fitbit challenge groups, and sister-in-law got her win, so I’m ready for a break this week!
Clean eating tastes GOOD
I feel like I’m finally coming into my own in the kitchen. It’s been 9 weeks since I began my clean eating lifestyle change (started from a challenge group, no less!) and not only have I maintained a 9 lb weight loss, but I feel happier and healthier since making the change. I have struck a nice balance between eating clean and allowing flexibility on the weekends which is the key to my success. I don’t drink alcohol Monday through Wednesday, which sounds easy because it’s only 3 days, but my fellow mamas out there know that’s A LOT OF DAYS WITHOUT WINE. I watch Scandal on Thursdays and wine is required during that show so my weekends start on Thursdays!
Here are some of my favorite and yummiest clean eating dishes since my last blog post. I’ve included links to the recipes in case you want to create these dishes yourself!
Putting the tacos in the oven makes the taco so crispy and it doesn’t just fall apart on your first bite like a lot of tacos do. I used ground turkey instead of ground beef to reduce calories and this recipe was a big winner! The recipe yields quite a bit of taco mixture so I was able to refrigerate and eat left overs the next day for lunch and it was even better!
The first time I attempted these eggrolls it was a disaster because I accidentally bought spring rolls vs. eggrolls! But the second time was the charm! I was really impressed with myself here, they pretty much rivaled Chili’s eggrolls, ha!
There’s just something about throwing a soup together in the slow cooker at lunch time and leaving for the afternoon and coming back later to a yummy smelling house and dinner is ready! With such light calories on this one you can afford to throw in some chips and homemade guacamole on the side!!
I’ve done this a few times now and my husband is a huge fan. The original recipe is meatless, but I’ve added chicken a couple times and grilled shrimp and it’s become a weekly staple in my house. My husband says it tastes like authentic Italian, go me! Bonus, my kids actually love this dish, which is very rare with my clean meals! (Pickyass eaters!)
Breakfast sandwich — my recipe!
Toast some Ezekiel bread, which is so healthy and it’s only 80 calories a slice! Scramble an egg with chopped veggies like onions and red peppers, and layer in some turkey bacon, cherry tomatoes, and fresh avocado spread. My avocado spread is 1/4 an avocado, mashed, a dash of extra virgin olive oil, a squeeze of lime, and sea salt and pepper. Sea salt is EVERYTHING!
Black Bean Spinach Quesadilla (add chicken)
I first tried this in its original recipe without chicken, but have since had it with chicken and it’s so much heartier. Who doesn’t love a good quesadilla? It’s just as good as a left over, just pop it in the oven and BAM, amaze low cal lunch!
I tried this once before but didn’t have asparagus at the time so I subbed green peppers and onions and it was still super yummy. But I personally thought the goat cheese wasn’t right for the dish. So the second time I made it I used asparagus and swapped fat free feta cheese and it was delish! My husband said it was “restaurant quality!” Whahoo!
My family used to have pizza Tuesdays every week with a take and bake from Papa Murphy’s. We still love pizza but now I make my own! I do a basic margherita pizza using a whole wheat flatizza crust which keeps the calories down. YUM. My daughter helps me make a little kiddie pepperoni pizza for her and her brother, such a budding little chef!
I made these the other night and it was thebomb.com. I was so pleased with myself for making such a yummy chicken enchilada!! Remember how I never cooked 9 weeks ago??? I made extra and refrigerated leftovers. I enjoyed the leftover enchilada for my Sunday lunch with some organic tortilla chips from Costco and salsa, such a yummy lunch!
You may have noticed that I make a lot of Mexican inspired dinners! I do love me some Mexican, and it’s just easy to use so many fresh ingredients and spices to whip up delicious meals like these. I hope I’ve inspired some of you to try clean eating and maybe check out some challenge groups on Facebook to get active and get some accountability! Being healthy feels AND tastes so good!