A Few of my Favorite Things-Gym Edition

My Favorite things- gym edition

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Here is a list of a few of my favorite things that I use at the gym that I absolutely cannot live without!

Before Workout-

  • Quest Bars-I grab one of these on my way out of the door and they are perfect to eat on the way to the gym AND give me plenty of energy for my workout!
  • L-Carnintine- This is a great amino acid that helps boost metabolism.  I take 2 before my workout every day.  If you prefer liquid, I have tried this kind before and liked it too!  You can take it with food or on an empty stomach if you prefer to train fasted.

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How to Keep Flexible Dieting Flexible

Keep Flexible Dieting Flexible

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I firmly believe if a diet isn’t sustainable you won’t stick to it.  How long can you really go with no carbs or no sugar?  I know I didn’t last long on either of those.  A week….Maybe??  Then I felt so miserable, I gave in and ate everything in my house.

If you are too uptight about your diet, you won’t be able to stick with it no matter how good of a diet it is and believe it or not, that INCLUDES counting macros!  There is a time and place to be super strict on your diet.  For me, I was super duper strict for the first 9-10 months.  I had a cheat meal once a week and I had non-tracking days on holidays only but other than that, I was 100%.  And I needed that at first.  It really worked for me while I was first starting and learning. But now that I know everything I do about flexible dieting and my body, I know I can be a little more lenient.  I am not seeing results as fast, but it’s also more sustainable for me and my lifestyle.  I am still very good at hitting my macros but if we are at a bbq or a business dinner, or something unplanned comes up,  I don’t freak out. I live life in that moment and get right back on track the second that moment is over.  I don’t let myself stay off track for long and that is the key.  You can have times where you don’t count or days where you are feeling extra hungry and want to eat everything, but you better get right back on track the next meal or day.  There is no starting on Monday and binging through the weekend.  That’s when things start to get bad.  Allow yourself a little leniency from time to time and the other times, stick with the diet.  I stay on track the best I can 90% of the time so I can allow myself some room to live the other 10%.

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Non-Scale Victories

Non-Scale Victories

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Non-Scale Victories (NSV) are the little or big changes we see in our bodies, our lives and our fitness abilities along our journey to a healthy and more physically fit life.  Non scale victories are the BEST kind of victories and should be celebrated with ice cream (that, of course, fits into our macros!)

In the world of dieting/healthy eating/fitness there is more to progress than just seeing the numbers on the scale go down or up.  There are many other (and much better) ways to track your progress besides the scale.  Taking measurements and pictures is the best way to see results in my opinion. The scale is just a small and unreliable way people use to measure your progress, yet it’s the most heavily relied upon tool for progress. Ironically, I have seen so many people who don’t lose a single pound but their before and after pictures look so incredibly different.

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A Full Day of Eating

full day of eating macros

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I thought it would be beneficial for you to see what a day of eating looks like for me.  I will do these often because I don’t eat the same things everyday.  Also, I am not a big planner at all.  I am more of a fly by the seat of my pants kind of gal.  I don’t ever meal prep (not that it’s bad to do so, it just doesn’t work with my life). As long as I have macro friendly foods around, I can hit my macros. I know a lot of people have a hard time hitting their protein, so hopefully this will give you an idea of what it takes to hit your protein numbers.  To be honest, most days the hardest macro for me to hit is fat!  Weird I know!

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At Home Ab Workout- No Equipment Needed!

At Home Abs Workout

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Here is one of my current at home ab workouts.  In the interest of time, I usually do my ab workouts at home.  There are a few machines or weighted exercises that I like to do at the gym, but I save the bulk of my ab workout for later. I go to the gym before my kids go to school which leaves me only about an hour of time at the gym before I need to get home to get them off to school.   Most days, by the time I do all of my other workouts, I am out of time.  After I get them off to school, I will get in some abs at home usually 1-2x per week, but I would like to increase that to 3x per week.

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Why you shouldn’t eat back the calories you burn from exercising.

Why you shouldn't eat back the calories you burn from exercising

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Should you eat back the calories that you burn from exercising?  This is a common question and something that is often misunderstood.  People often think “I am eating in a calorie deficit (eating less than your body burns) and then I am exercising on top of that. Shouldn’t I eat back the calories I burn?”

When I first started counting macros I wondered the same thing. However, what most people don’t understand is that your exercise calories are already calculated into your macros. So if you are eating your exercise calories back, you are effectively eating at maintenance or even a calorie surplus and will most likely not see any weight/fat loss, if not even some weight/fat gain!

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What is Macro Tracking?

What is Macro Tracking and Why you Should be Doing It

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You’re probably wondering what the heck macro tracking is and why you keep hearing about it everywhere right? You may have also heard the terms iifym or flexible dieting as well.  They all refer to the same lifestyle and way of eating. IIFYM stands for “if it fits your macros”. The concept of iifym is that you can eat anything you want as long as “it fits your macros.” (Yep, even donuts!)

Basically iifym or tracking macros is a way of counting calories by eating a certain amount of protein, carbs and fat.

“Macros” is short for macronutrients.

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Create a Workout Schedule That Works For You!

create a workout schedule 4

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It is SO important to write a workout schedule for yourself.  If you just plan to go wing it everyday, chances are you won’t see the results you want  If you don’t have a set plan, it’ll be easier to talk yourself out of going and pushing yourself and it will be hard to track your progress.  I downloaded an app called Strong a few weeks ago and have been tracking my progress in the gym and I swear, I have been SO sore lately! I am also seeing a new level of progress that I haven’t seen before. With the app I am able to track my lifts, how many sets I do and how much weight I use. It’s really challenging me to beat my progress from the previous week. I am really pushing myself to a new level I am loving it!

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Macro Friendly Food Review- Halo Top vs. Dreyers Slow Churned

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There are a lot flexible dieters out there that swear by Halo Top Ice Cream.  Let me back up…. there are a lot of flexible dieters out there that swear by Arctic Zero Ice Cream but I have had that and it in no way tastes like ice cream but is more comparable to air.  It is expensive and I wouldn’t recommend it.  So for this post I am just comparing to Halo Top.  And don’t get me wrong, Halo Top is good!  It has the taste and consistency of normal ice cream with great macros but being a frugal person, I can’t always justify the cost.  So I went on the hunt to find an ice cream with comparable macros but for a better price.  Little did I know, I was already buying that very ice cream.  I have been buying Dreyers Slow Churned for a long time and it’s actually my ice cream of choice because MACROS!  So I decided to put the two to the test.

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50 High Fiber Foods

high fiber food ideas

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If I am being completely honest, fiber is the hardest macro for me to hit.  Women need around 25 grams of fiber a day and men should have around 35-40 grams a day.  For some reason that is just tough for me!  For one reason, I am allergic to a lot of fruit so I can’t use that to help me.  However, I recently I found out that Quest Bars have around 15g of fiber per bar so I have been eating one of those every day and am able to hit my fiber.  So if you’re anything like me, you need a little help in this area!

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