Monday, November 17, 2014

It's almost TURKEY time...prepare yourself!

Looking forward to the Thanksgiving meal but dreading the bloat, possible weight gain and sleepiness afterwards? The average Thanksgiving dinner clocks in at 3.000 calories…gasp!! So follow these simple tips and swap outs and be thankful for a fun filled, guilt-free day of celebration!

1. Start the day off right with a metabolism boosting workout like a Thankgiving Day 5K or an at home gut busting burn.

2. Fill up on the good stuff.
  • Start with soup…yep…hot liquids make you feel fuller, so scoop up a healthy bowl full of goodness like this festive butternut squash soup.
  • White meat turkey (15% less calories than it’s dark counterpart)
  • Raw, steamed, grilled or roasted veggies like these tasty Brussels sprouts
  • “Lighter” mashed potatoes (make yours with Butterbuds to save a hundred calories and several grams of fat per serving)
  • Gravy…that’s right, I said gravy. It’s only about 80 calories per 2 tbsp and is more than half the calories of the sugary cranberries.
  • Bring a protein and fiber packed dish like quinoa. I make a yummy one with sweet potatoes and black beans; you have to try it!
  • Pumpkin Pie (180 calories vs. 250 in apple and up to 700 in pecan!!)
3. Skip the bad stuff.

  • Bread…you can eat bread any day…don’t waste your Thanksgiving calories on bread
  • Butter…there is butter in nearly everything on Thanksgiving so give your mashed potatoes the benefit of the doubt (that they taste great) and leave the butter on the table
  • Pass on the green bean casserole…yes, this tasty dish contains veggies, BUT it’s not enough to count this dish as a side vegetable what with all the fried onions and cream. Grab the steamed for fresh veggies instead

4. Ditch the drinks…just kidding. But remember that alcohol lowers your inhibition with what you put in your mouth (as well as what comes out of it) so just be careful.

5. Stay awake. While napping during the game might seem like a good idea, a better idea for increased energy is to go on a brisk, post-feast walk. Not only will you get your blood circulating, heart rate up and thus an avalanche of energy, but you’ll also be burning off some of the pie you just ate!

6. Relax…it’s a holiday. Although you don’t need to overindulge so much you make yourself sick, it’s still a holiday with some special food that is a one-day-deal. So, take a bite of everything that’s special to you and skip the stuff that’s not.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Warm up while you slim down in five minutes flat

Are you like me and just can't seem to warm up when winter comes calling? You don't need to wear 5 sweaters and a hat inside 24/7 when you integrate this 5 minute warm-up workout several times a day! Plus, it's double duty: burn calories all day long AND save on your gas bill.

  • 25 jumping jacks
  • 15 push ups
  • 50 walking lunges
  • 10 jump squats
Repeat twice and revel in your toastiness!

Chicken corn chowder: warm up while you slim down

Looking for a hearty and soul warming meal for these cold nights? My client, E.M., shared this amazing recipe with me and I adapted it for my own purposes as can you. The point is, ditch the calorie bomb comfort food and make something just as satisfying and slimming at the same time.

What you need: 

  • 1.5 lbs chopped chicken breast (I definitely recommended taking it off a rotisserie chicken...great flavor)
  • 2 red bell peppers chopped
  • 1/2 yellow onion chopped
  • 1.5 cups fresh corn cut off Cobb (frozen if in a pinch)
  • 1 small can green chilis
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic 
  • 4 cups far free chicken stock
  • Few dashes of Tabasco 
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • 2 tbsp heavy whipping cream
  • Fresh cilantro 
  • Salt and pepper to taste

What to do; 
  1. Put chicken, peppers, onions, corn, chilis, garlic, chicken stock, and tabasco in a crock pot and cook on low all day or on high for 3-4 hours.
  2. 30 minutes before serving, whisk together cream and corn starch untill smooth and stir into crockpot
  3. Chop cilantro and stir in right before serving
That's it! :) 

It's still a delicious soup without the cream/cornstarch, so don't disregard this recipe if you are dairy-free, just leave the dairy out of it.

Each cup serving (makes about 10) has some pretty awesome nutrition facts: 140 calories, 3.5 grams fat, 18 grams protein, 8 grams carbs, 1 gram fiber.

Just as with any soup, you could totally change this recipe time I'm going to add a ton of celery and maybe some carrots and perhaps a few diced potatoes to thicken it up even more...yummy!