A Lesson on Balance & Comfort – Brought to you by my crockpot.

For a while now I’ve been using my crockpot as storage. The most action it’s gotten in the past few months have been the bottom of miscellaneous stacked bowls. This also goes for my gym membership. For awhile, my $39.99 membership mine as well had been cash I dropped on the ground. I wasn’t going. I couldn’t get myself up to go before work, and couldn’t get myself to go after. I had been a morning person before, so I knew, eventually, I’d be back at it. But it took time. I am four months into my first big girl job and I have finally nailed down my schedule and daily routines. As I continue to get used to my new schedule, I’m slowly learning how to balance my time in order to keep a balanced diet and a balanced social life. I wasn’t really sure what clicked. It could have been seeing the dust on my crock pot, realizing that I don’t cook anymore. It could have been that I work for a denim company, and that denim was getting a little tighter as the holidays drew closer. It also could have been my swollen face from taking in way too much sodium, which made me realize I didn’t have to participate in every happy hour special, no matter how good $5 beers and half off nachos tasted. I realized I was missing this little thing called moderation, self discipline and general comfort in my clothing. In the past few years, I’ve gradually graduated from the phase of wanting to be a size 4, to focusing on comfort and overall health and happiness.

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So – I’ve laced up my shoes, given in to my alarm clocks, and made a few moderate changes that have gone a long way. My energy has already improved a long with my attitude. Results take time, but I feel them coming (I know, just in time for me to have four helpings of eggplant parmesan on Christmas). Sundays, for me, are crucial. As are my weekends. I have started to make the best out of my Sundays. I make sure to make a trip to the gym, whether it’s a good or bad workout, it’s a workout, and I always feel great after it. I make sure to not binge on fried food and carbs, and allow myself to eat something I love, in moderation, like the sushi roll and gluten free cookie I had yesterday. I grocery shop, make sure I’m outside even if it’s just a walk to the gym or store, and cook up some food for the week. The only thing I let myself binge on is Netflix. It is Sunday, after all.

I have been using my crock pot a lot recently. Meal prepping for the week has me in the kitchen like a spazz and using the crockpot has really calmed down the process. I throw a few different ingredients into my crockpot – leave it for a few hours – and there I have it. Dinner or lunch for every day of the week.

Chicken Chili Soup

Don’t worry – it tastes better than it looks. Confession – this wasn’t supposed to be a soup. I decided to wing it and threw the below ingredients into my crock pot. Though I was hoping for a chili, it turned out a bit soupy. (Is soupy a word?) It could have easily thickened over night / throughout the course of the day but for now – I’ll call it a soup. Update: It was perfect. Absolutely perfect. 

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1 lb. Chicken Breast
1 cup Chicken Broth (low sodium)
1 can Refried Black Beans
1/2 bag mixed veggies (carrots, peas, corn)

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Makes about 4 servings.

1 serving:
326 calories
6 g Fat
28 g Carbohydrates
38 g Protein
(6 g Fiber , 5 g Sugar)

Chicken & Vegetable Soup (with or without Rice)

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3/4 lb Chicken Breast
2 Cup Chicken Broth (low sodium)
1 bag mixed vegetables (cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, corn)

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Makes 3-4 servings.

1 Serving:
254 Calories
3 g Fat
10 g Carb
35 g Protein

Optional: Make your soup into 4 servings and add rice. I cooked quinoa and brown rice and mixed it together – switching it up every now and then is important! (Recommended serving size – 1/2 cup cooked rice)

Sundays in Chelsea

Holy moly – has it been awhile or what?! I apologize for my absence, I know the world was quite effected by my lack of posts. I wanted to do a fun, picture based, post to get myself back into this thing! So as I have blogged & ranted about before, Sundays were always a bit of a rut. Well, now that I’m not a bobcat anymore (tear), I decided that my Sundays need to be productive & positive (or filled with mimosas & waffles)! Not to mention, I am currently living in New York City. There’s never not something to do. So sometimes Sundays are filled with brunch, grocery shopping or scoping out street markets. This sunday was filled with beautiful sunshine, some cardio and some cookies!

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Take a look at my adventure through my lovely neighborhood of Chelsea, as I run a long the chelsea piers, lay out a long the Hudson River, and take a bite out of somethings scrumptious!

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IMG_1172So – This was my Sunday! Grabbed some groceries on my way home and found some new almond butter to try! I am going to try to post more. I am cooking, but I am unfortunately not cooking anything recipe worthy – so those will be lacking! I am going to try to post about my adventures in NYC. Where I go, what I eat & what I see! Stay tuned 🙂

Yours Truly,

Stef

Advocare 24 Day Challenge & Easy Meals

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If you follow me on my other various social networks, you know that I have recently started the ADVOCARE 24 DAY CHALLENGE! How exciting. I’ve spent months and months wondering what the heck Advocare was, and thinking it was some silly little fad-diet where they tell you to eat nothing and go on a liquid diet and take fat burner pills etc etc etc. After a couple of phone calls with Drew, one of my crossfit coaches, he explained everything Advocare has to offer! On my own, I learned that Advocare sells quality products that are not only extremely reliable, but they WORK! I spent time going through personal Advocare success stories on the internet and other social networks, and decided that Advocare was just what I needed! Now that I have graduated college, I’ve decided it’s time to finally beat my plateau! It’s been about two years since I’ve been at my most comfortable weight, and I’m done with settling with the uncomfortable!

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So, it’s Day Two of the challenge and I’m already feeling great! The first ten days is the cleanse phase. I will do more updates as the days go on, as two days is almost too early to talk about too many results – but so far I’m feeling good! Today, I got a procedure done on my lower leg and have to lay low for a while. My doctor told me that I need to go two weeks minimum without workout out, and we will reevaluate then. Meanwhile, I need to wait one month until I squat, all so I don’t tear my stitches apart. I was pretty bummed out that this was all happening around the challenge. Though, I figure it’s a good sign because the challenge will keep me on track while I am not active! I hope to start working out my first weekend of work. I make the big move to NYC next week and I am so excited to start my internship. I’m hoping Advocare will help keep my energy high for those long work hours! Other than Advocare, I like to make sure that my food is also my fuel for the day. Here are a few meals I’ve had since I’ve started the challenge:

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1/2 Cup Quick Oats, microwaved for 2 minutes with 1 cup of Water. 1 Tablespoon Slivered Almonds. 1 Large Strawberry. 1 Cup Egg Whites, with some dollops of horseradish mustard & hot sauce!

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This was 1/4 cup (uncooked) Quinoa, 5 oz Ground Turkey, and 1 cup Mushrooms, 1/2 cup Zucchini, 1/2 Large Tomato, sautéed!

For lunch today, I had 3/4 cup Brown Rice, 6 oz Chicken Breast, 1 cup Mushrooms, 1/2 Large Tomato, and 2 tbsp Hummus! I wish I took a picture of that because it was delicious. The hummus was a perfect addition to my meal!

Stay tuned for more easy meal ideas and inspiration during my 24 Day Challenge!

Yours Truly,

Stef

 

Cookie Dough Quest Bar Cereal

If you haven’t realized, I’ve recently become an unofficial spokesperson for Quest Bars. I talk about them almost daily, I recommend them to those with a sweet tooth, and I just generally praise their existence. Almost as much as peanut butter, but that’s pushing it.

Okay, so Quest Bars are no chocolate lava cake, but they are the closest thing you will get to that while still keeping your diet clean. They don’t taste like any ordinary-100 ingredient list-high calorie-no protein-just carbs-diet bar. Each flavor tastes amazing, you almost feel like you’re cheating on your diet! But don’t worry, you’re not. Each Quest Bar has 160-190 calories, 4 net carbs, a ridiculous amount of fiber (rock on), and a weird amount of protein. Weird, as in freakin’ awesome, that is. Where does the protein come from? I’ll list the ingredients for the Cookie Dough Quest Bar, and then you’ll see.

-Protein Blend (Whey Protein Isolate, Milk Protein Isolate)
-Isomalto-Oligosaccharides (100% Natural Prebiotic Fiber)
-Almonds
-Water
– Unsweetened Chocolate
-Cocoa Butter
-Erythritol

It may look like I skimped on the ingredient list, but I’ll give you some proof.

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The first time I heard about Quest Bars I could have sworn they were going to taste like plastic. I got a Cinnamon Roll Quest Bar and ate it. It was delicious, but I was still not THAT impressed. Why was everyone raving about them? I then realized that my quest bar was practically frozen, so it was a little harder than it should have been. I put it in the microwave, and it’s all a blur from there.

Quest Bar Nutrition’s instagram posts 15 second recipe videos, which can also be found on youtube. I want to start trying almost all of them! Which takes me to my first experiment. Quest Bar Cereal. Who doesn’t love cereal? The other day I saw someone eating Reeses Cereal and I haven’t stopped thinking about it since. My inner fat girl was crying to come out. Anywho, this happened:

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-1 Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Quest Bar
-1 Rice Cake
-1 Small Banana
-1/2 Cup Unsweetened Almond Milk

The instructions are also very simple. Set your oven to 350 degrees. Cut your Quest Bar into tiny pieces. I’d say bite size but, I take big bites. I cut my quest bar into pieces the size of peanut M&M’s (yum). Lay your quest bar pieces on a cookie sheet, or a piece of tin foil (I didn’t feel like doing dishes). Once your oven is preheated, put your quest bar in your oven and set your timer for 4 MINUTES. No more, no less. Once that 4 minutes is up, take out your quest bar and “stir”. Put your quest bar back in the over for another 4 MINUTES. No more, no less. Once my four minutes were up I put my quest bar pieces directly in the freezer for another four minutes. I chopped up my rice cake into cereal-like pieces, cut up my banana, and took my Quest Bar Cereal out of the freezer and added it to the bowl! Add your milk and enjoy 🙂 

Yours Truly,

Stef

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For a video of how to do this, click here!

Quick Meals & Sweet Snacks

Before you read; This post isn’t all about chicken. But naturally, I rant about it for a solid half hour.

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Chicken is a pretty touchy subject for those who eat it all the time. When I first started becoming more aware of my eating habits, my focus was mostly on counting calories. Chicken seemed to be something that fit my macros appropriately. I could also eat a larger portion of chicken for a lower amount of calories than, say, ground beef. I always favored chicken… chicken breast, chicken thighs. I’d have chicken for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Chicken for days. And I mean…DAYS. So here I am, making my grocery list, and realizing that I have to buy some chicken. Buzzkill of the century. It’s more the thought of chicken that’s been pissing me off. In reality, when I sit down and eat it, it’s not that bad. I go through stages with my diet. Sometimes my go-to is chicken and sometimes it isn’t. I realized it’s because I never really experimented enough with chicken. Pictured above is chicken I seasoned with Lemon Juice, Mrs. Dash Chicken Seasoning & Mrs. Dash Spicy Seasoning. The lemon juice adds some moisture to it, and the mix of seasonings keep it exciting.

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Pictured above is a dish that looks a lot more fancy that it is. It is, simply, 5 cups of Kale, 2 cups of Mushrooms, under 1 pound of chicken, seasoned with Lemon Juice & Mrs. Dash Chicken Seasoning.

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I cooked this dish on 400 degrees for I don’t know how long. Estimate 25-30 minutes. Depending on the intensity of your oven. Anywho, I cut the chicken up into slices, added more lemon juice, and put it back in the oven for another 5-10 minutes to ensure that the chicken was fully cooked. (I realize I need to start writing things down when I cook them so I don’t forget how to cook them. On my way to be the number one cooking blog in America..)

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I served my dish over a mixture of brown & wild rice and quinoa. It was very tasty and the chicken kept it’s moisture! Nobody likes dry chicken.

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This chicken dish was prepared in my cute little crockpot. I stared at my chicken for a solid ten minutes because I couldn’t figure out how to cook it and the last thing I wanted to do was cook these babies whole. Shredded chicken was my best bet. I put a pound and a half of chicken in my crock pot with 1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth. I added Lemon Juice (obvi), Basil leaves, and Mrs. Dash Italian Blend seasoning. You haven’t lived until you’ve used Mrs. Dash Italian Blend seasoning… it’s a game changer. I let it cook on low for about 8 hours. I then changed it to warm and let it sit, which is something I’m never gonna do again because it wasn’t nearly as juicy as it should have been. So, next time, I’ll probably cook it on high for about 5 hours max and take it out. In the middle of the day, I slowly started shredding the chicken. Once it was cooked through, I shredded it completely and let it sit. The flavor was perfect but the chicken was slightly overcooked. I think I’m gonna try again today. I would have taken pictures of the finishing project but it was gone in 60 seconds or less. I’ll document when I’m more successful.

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Oh, tilapia. I have the same opinion about tilapia as I do with chicken. I cooked 7 ounces of Tilapia in Mrs. Dash Italian Blend seasoning and lemon juice. I put my tilapia over sliced celery, and a delicious slaw I’ve been buying from Kroger! I added lemon juice, hot sauce and horseradish mustard to the top and mixed it like a salad. It was delicious! I’ve been doing this with my tuna, too. The slaw adds a perfect crunch!

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I cooked about 3 pounds of Ground Turkey meat with Lemon Juice, Basil Leaves and a blend of italian seasonings that my mother gave me while I was home last weekend. The seasoning is delicious and has no sodium! Pictured above is just 6 oz of Ground Turkey with asparagus and carrots. I added hot sauce to my ground turkey. Perfectly portioned meal. Meat & veggies, you can’t go wrong!

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Pictured above is the same ground turkey meat I cooked, over rice and veggies, and a little bit of Mia’s Basil Marinara sauce! This meal gave me my italian fix, without the splurge! This was about 6 oz Ground Turkey, 3/4 cup rice, and two cups veggies! When I eat rice I typically eat 1/2 cup (measured cooked) brown rice.

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Onto some more “sweeter” options. Everybody likes a sweet every now and then. We’re only human. Sweet potatoes aren’t exactly a “sweet”, but they taste like candy when cooked to perfection! I turn my oven on 400 degrees and let my sweet potato sit for about an hour. I take it out when it starts oozing. (Oozing? Ew.) I haven’t made sweet potatoes in awhile, but I’m back on that bandwagon.

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Rice cakes have been my go-to snack lately. It may be one of those obsessions that I will soon get tired of, but right now I’m on a roll. I have been limiting my nut butter to, barely, twice a week. Rice cakes are also a great snack choice when eating nut butter because you are less likely to overeat. I just spread one tablespoon of nut butter on one rice cake, add some jelly, and I get my peanut butter and jelly fix! I haven’t been eating nut butter because it is so easy to overeat. You’d be lying if you said you’ve never sat there with a spoon and your jar of peanut or almond butter. Once I stop eating nut butter for a week or two, I stop craving it. Allowing myself to have it every now and then keeps me disciplined. I know I can eat it, but the less I have it, the more likely I am to have it in moderation. Portion control.

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I might do a whole blog post about Quest Bars, so I’m going to keep this light. This is a Cinnamon Roll Quest Bar, baked in the oven on 350 for 6 minutes, with 1 tbsp Nut Butter & 1 tbsp Jelly on top. I’d talk about it, but all you have to do is look, and you get the picture.

IMG_5296Last but not least… Cucumbers? As many of you know, there is a huge community of “fitness freaks” on the social media site, instagram. #FitFam #EatClean #InstaFit I recently saw someone post a bowl of cucumbers with…cinnamon? I thought it was weird, but then I heard from a friend how delicious it really was. So I cut up my cucumbers, added cinnamon and liquid stevia, and holy crap it was good!

As you can see, all of these meals are very healthy, easy, and diet friendly! Eating healthy doesn’t have to be a chore. It can be fun! You just have to get in the right mindset and you’re halfway there. Enjoy!

Yours Truly,

Stef

Mushroom & Basil Turkey Muffins – Simple & Healthy!

Plain ground turkey meat is not all that appetizing. What makes it so delicious is the seasonings, flavors, and salt that you can add to it! But what do you do if you’re like me and you’re trying to keep your salt to a minimum and your diet as clean as possible (without going stir crazy)? So I’ve been following a very strict “plan” and am ready to experiment just how strict I can stay while still adding loads of flavor. Below is the ingredients & cooking instructions for my delicious mushroom and basil turkey muffins! Before you scroll down, keep in mind this was during one of my cooking binges. Anyone else go on cooking binges? I was bored, in general and with my diet, so all of the sudden I cooked up everything I just bought at the grocery store into three GREAT dishes, this one included, that I will be sharing with you all! When I go on these cooking “binges”, I typically just eye everything. I have become very good at eye-ing ingredients, so don’t be worried – you can trust me.

Mushroom & Basil Turkey Muffins!

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Approx. 1 pound Ground Turkey Meat
2 cups cut up Mushrooms

Mrs. Dash Italian Medley Seasoning
Lemon Juice
Basil

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Combine all ingredients into a bowl (or your meat container, I honestly just didn’t want to do dishes). This is where eye-ing your ingredients comes in handy. Do you want the flavor overloaded with Basil? Go ahead, girl, sprinkle as much as you want! The same goes for the lemon juice and italian medley seasoning. (I know I said “girl” but, dudes can make this recipe too, in case you were wondering)

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Mush (professional cooking terms) your ingredients together until everything looks portioned. This is a good time to decide if you need to add more basil, lemon juice, or Mrs. Dash.

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Portion your “mush” into muffin tins. Mine fit perfectly into six muffin cups! (Don’t forget to use Pam!)
Cook on 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes! Cooking time may vary, as my oven is pretty strong.

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To make sure they are done, place your fork in them, if they slide right out and are nice and firm – they are finished! If not, put them in for another 5 minutes.

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Makes 3 Servings
Serving Size: 4 oz (two muffins)
Approx. 170 Calories, 9 g Fat, 1 Carb, 23 g Protein

You really can’t go wrong with this recipe! If you prefer ground beef, go for it! These muffins are great on-the-go and portioned perfectly! For all of you heavy lifters, all six of these muffins may be your whole dinner. For some, two muffins is just enough! I ate my portion with 1/2 cup Brown Rice and 2 cups of broccoli. Hash tag eat clean, hash tag meat for dayz.

Yours Truly,

Stef

 

If You’re Going Through Hell, Keep Going

So we’ve all been there. We start a diet and don’t finish it. We try everything, slim fast, adkins, diet pills, and the ever so nauseating cottage cheese diet. (Why?) Well finally, people are catching on to the whole eat clean “fad”. And I hope this fad turns into a lifestyle for many people, until death do them part. Yoyo dieting, the reason why everyone fails. One week of a strict diet plan, whatever it may be, and then a weekend of cupcakes and pasta. “Because I deserve it” What exactly are we trying to accomplish here? I am completely down with the whole treating yourself concept, but I find it bizarre that we feel we need to reward ourselves with food.
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As if I’m not guilty of the feeling and craving to cheat on your diet, I simply find it hard to do. The diet starts and you’re motivated as anything. I mean, that’s why you started it in the first place isn’t it? Because you’re ready to change. Some people say the first week in is miserable. If it’s miserable, you haven’t mentally committed to your new lifestyle. You should be excited that first week. Trying out new foods, new healthy snack & dinner options. It’s fun. (or am I crazy?) You’re starting to feel detoxed and you’re finally noticing that you can do it. “Hey, this isn’t that bad” Now, I can’t blame you for feeling frustrated during say…week 2 or 3. That’s where I am right now. And speaking from experience, I hate this part. You haven’t cheated, you crave certain foods, and you wonder why you’re not at you’re goal weight yet. I’m such an idiot for having these thoughts, but I’m human, and we all, unfortunately, think this way. We have no patience. Therefore, I’m creating steps to get you through the days of hell that come with dieting. Dieting is a really personal experience. You get to know yourself more than you ever thought you could. You learn your emotions, trigger points, and methods for success. This post may get a little personal but, controlling your emotions is the first step to controlling your life. That is, if you have emotion.

Step One; Patience
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You have to remember that results don’t happen overnight. It doesn’t take one week of eating plain chicken and veggies to reach your goals. And it doesn’t take countless hours on the elliptical machine, with no change in diet, to get there either. Last night I was feeling anxious, and impatient. I was sitting and second guessing myself. Wondering if I was doing everything I could to get where I needed to be, and why I wasn’t there yet. My friend and fellow Crossfitter sent me a quote,

It takes 4 weeks for you to see your body changing, 8 weeks for your friends and family, and 12 weeks for the rest of the world. Keep Going.

When you run out of patience, it triggers a lot of emotion. You feel like you want to give in and raid your pantry. You wake up and lose motivation to get out there and workout. You look at yourself and see no difference, when really, the most important difference starts with inside. The first month is a huge test of mind over matter. You’re testing out how badly you want to change, and how badly you want to feel better. They say results are 80% diet and 20% exercise. I completely agree. Though, in my opinion, your results count more on your mentality than anything.

Step Two; Change your Thoughts
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I’m trying this new thing where I practice what I preach. I’m great at giving advice, but not so good at taking my own. I sometimes let my thoughts ruin my progress. Once I lose patience, my thoughts wander and my mind blows up. It moves a mile a minute and I typically want to give up. Recently I’ve trained my mind to stop thinking so negatively. When those thoughts pop up, I find many ways to distract and motivate myself (which will be talked about in the rest of the steps). If you’re feeling sluggish before a workout, take a breather and think about how good you’ll feel when it’s all over. Remember the feeling you get when you’re finished that run, and crave it.

Step Three; Breathe
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If you’re feeling anxious, defeated, or hungry; breathe. Those lungs we have? Use them, control them. Lay down on your bed and just calm the hell down. What is so different about yesterday, say, a day you were feeling great about yourself, than today? Nothing except your lack of patience and crazy thoughts. So, we covered patience and the importance of controlling our thoughts. Now to control the ever so effortless act of breathing. Not only does the act of breathing keep you alive…it calms you down. I’m trying to explain what it does to your brain but I’m not a neurologist so… what I’m trying to say is that it helps your brain come back to reality. Breathe in with your nose, out with your mouth, and remember where you were when you started. Whether you’re 20 pounds down, 2 pounds down, on mile 2, or nothing, you’re doing a whole lot more than you were before you decided to change your life.

Step Four; Embrace Yourself
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This is about to sound so corny but… if you feel like crap, try to reverse those feelings by reminding yourself how beautiful you are. Whether it’s in actions, or physically. Do something nice for someone. Surprise someone. But don’t forget about yourself. Here’s the weird part. I always had this little motto that I use, “Look good, feel good”. It’s not always the case with everyone, but it helps. If you really feel stressed from your new found lifestyle, put on a cute friggin outfit and go out to lunch or something. Take an obnoxious selfie. Take a picture of yourself in your sports bra. Or shorts, men. Don’t look at how far you have to go, look at how far you’ve come. And smile. Put on some makeup, if you’re into that. Try on some outfits, and think about how good you look, and how much better you’ll eventually look, and feel, if you keep going and fight off the craving to cheat. It sounds egotistical, and little high maintenance, but if you don’t think you’re awesome, no one else will. So…work it. Hair flip.

Step Five; Don’t Cheat
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A moment on the lips is forever on the hips. Haha, but really. You’re that much closer to reaching your goals. Is it all really worth it? Food is damn good, but being healthy and happy is a lot better. You can do anything for a week, but can you do it for a month? Two months? You’re a certified bad ass if you can do that. It’s tough work. Mentally, physically, and emotionally draining. But it’s worth it. Plus, you wouldn’t cheat on your boyfriend would you? So don’t cheat on your diet. Same concept. Each lead you to lonely nights with Ben and Jerry, once again.

Step Six; If You Can’t Eat It, Don’t Buy It
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There is no better idea to set yourself up for failure than to buy yourself unhealthy food for “later” or your “cheat meal”. Why the hell would you buy a pop tart, or ice cream, or a donut, if all you are gonna do is stare at it and dream about eating it? Hello, welcome to mid-diet torture. The only food you should keep around the house is the food that will make you better. There’s a time and a place for everything, and right now, nobody has time for Oreos that you’re saving to binge out on after you’ve lost five pounds. If it’s not around, you won’t eat it. If you have nothing unhealthy in your house to snack on, you won’t cheat. There is already enough temptation throughout everyday life, you don’t need to add it in the comfort of your own home.

Step Seven; Know Your Trigger Points
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Just because you’re dieting doesn’t mean you have to skip out on social interaction. If you’re friends are making a quick trip to McDonalds for lunch, or your favorite restaurant with your favorite greasy food, I’d say that there are times when you can choose not to go. Sometimes you can go for the experience, to hang out with your friends, but not eat. But sometimes it’s not worth hearing people beg you to eat or telling you that one piece of pizza won’t kill you. Sure, it won’t, but it won’t help you. Know your trigger points. Know what restaurants to avoid. If there’s places you know you’ll slip at, avoid them. Suggest healthier restaurants, suggest your friends eat lunch at home. Also, stop looking at yourself. If you look at yourself long enough, you’ll create flaws, gain ten pounds, and probably grow a mustache. I know I stated before that you should take selfies, smile at yourself, and make yourself feel beautiful, but don’t get carried away. Mirrors are trigger points, they will either make or break you, depending on how long you look at yourself. And if you look long enough, you might change your view of yourself just enough to break that mirror. That’s seven years bad luck, and not to mention, embarrassing. Another thing that can stress you out while dieting is certain clothes. Don’t go to a store and try on products that you know have never flattered you, and expect to miraculously look like a super model one week after your diet starts. The most frustrating thing is to try on clothes and have them not fit, or just generally make you look horrible. You’re gonna want to sprint straight to the food court and get yourself a happy meal, or better yet, some Chinese food.

Step Eight; Don’t Listen To Anyone But Yourself
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Your friends & family may not always be the best support system. You’re friends will tell you to skip the gym and go get pizza and beer, you’re family will wonder why you HAVE to workout. They will constantly ask you if you want seconds, if you want sweets, if you want this or that. They don’t understand that you have mentally committed to something, something that they may not be strong enough or willing to commit to. That’s completely fine with you, they don’t have to change their lifestyle, and they don’t necessarily have to support you. That’s what I mean when I say that this journey gives you the opportunity to really get to know ones self. You know how to say no, you know your trigger points, and you know what you want. And that’s change.

Last but not least, I’ll end this post with my absolute favorite pinterest find I stumbled upon awhile back.
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Stay strong and one day you’ll turn into somebody else’s motivation.