Sunday, September 22, 2013

How to eat clean while eating out at a restaurant.

Eating OUT! It's something that we all do and should enjoy. I don't want it to be a source of frustration or anxiety. When I was trying to find the balance between clean eating & when to allow a cheat meal I became "no fun to go out with anymore" according to my husband because I would stress so much about a restaurant menu. But once I learned a coping skills eating out became much easier for me again.
*If possible, check out the menu online before every leaving the house. Look for the most "clean" menu item. That way when you walk in the restaurant you won't even have to open up the menu & be tempted by those pictures & scrumptious-sounding descriptions.
*Look for words like BAKED, GRILLED, BROILED. Avoid words like smothered, fried, scampi, creamy.
*If a dish comes with sauce request to leave the sauce off or have it served on the side.
*Opt for oil & vinegar for your salad or a vinegrette. Bypass the creamy dressings & don't be fooled by "fat-free"...that just means "filled with chemicals"....blah!
*Pass the bread basket - it's just empty calories!
*Skip the soda or sweet tea...get a big glass of WATER with a nice wedge of lemon. If you want some tea go for the unsweetened variety. I actually carry packets of Stevia in my purse now to sweeten my own tea & coffee on the occasion that I get it when I'm out.
*Look for half-portions or order from the appetizer menu. If that's not an option, don't be afraid to leave some on your plate or take home a doggy bag. I know I was brought up to be part of the "clean plate club"& not to waste food. Eat slowly & listen to your body. Don't keep stuffing yourself just because it tastes good. Eat what you know is an appropriate portion & push the plate away.
*If you REALLY want a bite of something sweet after dinner share a dessert & adhere to the "three bite rule"...three bites should be enough to satisfy that sweet tooth. Then put down your fork & walk away!

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Southwest Quinoa Salad

I love quinoa & am always trying it in new recipes. Today I was feeling the flavors of the Southwest. It turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself. 
Southwest Quinoa Salad
Bring 2 cups water & 1 cup quinoa to a boil. Lower heat to low .& simmer about 10 mins. Remove from heat & allow to cool.
In a bowl whisk together 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, 2 tsp. chili powder, 2 tsp. cumin, black pepper & sea salt to taste, & 1 tsp. blackstrap molasses.
Dice 1 small onion, 1 cucumber, 1 cup cherry tomatoes. Drain & rinse 1 can black beans. Thaw 1 cup frozen corn in a colander by running hot water over it.
Combine all ingredients & mix well.

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Friday, September 13, 2013

Baked Fajitas

Dinner is prepped & ready to pop in the oven. I have been looking forward to this meal all week! 
Baked Fajitas
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced into 1 inch strips
2 bell peppers, sliced
1 - 2 onions, sliced
Juice of 1 lime
Juice of 1 lemon
1 Tbls. chili powder
2 Tbls. Cumin
1 Tbls. Garlic powder
1 - 2 Tbls. extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste.
Cover & allow to marinate at least 1 hour.
Bake at 375 for approx. 35 mins. or until chicken is cooked through.
Serve on whole wheat tortillas with fresh chopped tomatoes, avocado, & plain Greek yogurt (in place of sour cream)

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Sunday, September 8, 2013

Turkey Chili

Football season is upon us!  One of my favorite times of the year.  One food that I always think of when I'm watching football is chili.  I have taken this family favorite & made it healthier with lean ground turkey & loading it up with tons of veggie goodness.  It is full of flavor & aims to please all the hungry football fans in your house!

Turkey Chili
1. Brown 1 lb. extra lean ground turkey seasoned with 1 tsp. sea salt, 1 Tbls. garlic powder OR 1 crushed clove of fresh garlic, & fresh ground black pepper to taste.
2. Add 1 chopped bell pepper (any color you like) & 1 diced onion.  Allow to soften slightly.
3. Add one can diced tomatoes (no salt added) & one can tomato sauce (no salt added).  Stir in 1 cup frozen (or fresh if in season) corn kernels, 1 can black beans (drained & rinsed).  If you want to amp up the spice, add a diced banana or jalepeno pepper.
4. Add 2 Tbls. no salt added chili powder, 1 Tbls. cumin, black pepper to taste, 2 tsp. garlic powder, 1 tsp. sea salt.  If you want some more spice add some red pepper flakes & / or some paprika.
5. Simmer on low heat for at least 1 hour to let the flavors develop.  Top with a spoonful of plain Greek yogurt in place of the traditional sour cream & a sprinkle of freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese.  

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Focus T25 Beta begins!

Well, it took me six weeks to get through the Alpha phase of Focus T25 instead of five (I re-did week 3) & I have finally started the Beta phase yesterday!  Focus T25 is such a well-built workout.  Shaun T has set it up so that you really build the foundation in Alpha before you move onto Beta.  Yesterday I did Core Cardio - it had many familiar moves from Alpha Cardio, but kicked up a notch & a few new moves thrown in there.  Today I did Speed 2.0 - once again, many familiar moves from Speed 1.0, but taken to the next level.  No stretch "breaks" in this workout!  I did find it hard to move my feet fast enough at some points, so I would take a few steps with the modifier, Tania, and then get back to full-force with Shaun T & the rest of the crew.
Are you looking to take your fitness to the next level?  How are you challenging yourself?  I'd love to help you reach your health & fitness goals!  Contact me on Facebook at