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How To Eat MORE and Weigh LESS

Eat 1800 calories a day AND lose weight???

How in the world was I EVER going to do that???

I remember thinking that to myself as I sat there on the sofa in our living room, going through the Insanity nutrition guide, and following the calculation that it gave me to figure out how many calories I needed to consume every day while doing that fitness program.

Any time I’d wanted to lose weight in the past, I’d exercised and limited myself to 1200 calories a day. That had always worked!

Now I was supposed to eat 600 MORE a day! Following my basic math of 3500 calories equals one pound, I quickly tallied up that over the course of a 9-week program, that was NINE EXTRA POUNDS that I now wasn’t gonna lose!

I was less than thrilled at the idea, but the whole reason I was doing Insanity in the first place was because what I had been doing for years wasn’t working for me anymore.

I had finally admitted to myself that I wasn’t a fitness and nutrition expert, and if I was gonna be following someone else’s fitness program for the next nine weeks, then I figured I may as well do it 100% all-in and follow their nutrition program too.

So 1800 calories a day it was…luckily I didn’t do the Month 2 calculation at the time, which put me at a whopping 2000 calories!

Over the next nine weeks, I defied the odds (in my brain anyway). I ate between 1800 and 2000 calories every single day, and I lost 11 lbs and double digit inches of fat on top of it!

HOW THE HELL DID THIS JUST HAPPEN???

I was intrigued by my results, and I wanted to continue to expand upon them too, so I figured I’d better learn something about this whole calories consumed/weight loss thing.

The first thing that I learned is what a calorie even is – it’s a unit used to measure the amount of energy that your body generates from the food that you eat.

That energy goes not only towards things that you decide to do, like walking, talking, and working out, but also to things that just happen naturally, like breathing, digesting, and your heart beating.

These functions all require a certain amount of energy, so if you consume MORE calories than is required to do them, your body turns them into fat for future use. On the flip side, when you eat FEWER calories than you use, your body typically taps into that stored fat and burns it.

The latter of those two processes was what I was already familiar with, and what I think most other people are too. So it’s easy to think that if you want to lose weight, you’ll just consumer fewer calories, and burn through your fat storage FASTER, right?

WRONG!

Apparently if your calorie deficit gets too large, you can actually do more HARM, than GOOD…WHAAAAAT? This thought process was completely foreign to me.

Yes, your body will tap into your stored fat. But at the same time, it might also start breaking down your muscle for fuel.

Considering that muscle tissue burns calories at about 2.5 times the rate that body fat does (even while you’re RESTING!), it’s pretty easy to conclude that you want as much muscle in your body as possible. Um, wait….I can burn calories while SLEEPING??? I’m in!

I also learned that when you put fewer calories in your body, your metabolism sometimes slows down in an effort to conserve energy, which means that your body is once again burning even FEWER calories.

The general consensus seemed to be that you don’t want to drop below a 500 calorie a day deficit. Great – but what number was I even supposed to subtract 500 calories from?

I did a little bit of research and found a super simple calculator that I could use for everyday purposes.

I sit at a desk all day, which means that my lifestyle is considered “Sedentary.” My current weight in pounds x 12 = My Maintenance Caloric Needs.

If I changed jobs to one where I’m on my feet all day, or if I decided to start doing a moderate workout program, then my lifestyle would become “Moderately active.” My current weight in pounds x 13 = My Maintenance Caloric Needs.

If I changed jobs to one where I did manual labor (I know, I know….HIGHLY unlikely), or if I decided to do Insanity again, or one of Beachbody’s other advanced workout programs, then my lifestyle would become “Highly active.” My current weight in pounds x 14 = My Maintenance Caloric Needs.

If I’m happy with my current weight and just want to maintain it, then that’s the calorie number that I should stick with.

But if I’ve got more work to do, or even just a bender of a weekend like is known to happen from time to time, then I should subtract 500 calories from that number instead. Apparently you never want to drop below 1200 though.

But I’ve gotta tell ya…I can’t even imagine eating ONLY 1200 calories a day now!

It’s funny how perceptions change…in just 60 days I went from being horrified at the thought of “stuffing” 1800 calories into my body, to being horrified at the thought of eating “only” 1200 calories.

I don’t know about you, but it seems like an easy decision to me. Eat LESS food and weigh MORE, or eat MORE food and weigh LESS….hm…

Comment below and let me know what YOU think!

Katie-before November 2011 Pic
 

How To Turn 5 Hours Into 23

Time management, shmime management!

You can’t manage time – it’s going to pass, one way or another. All that you can do is manage your PRIORITIES.

So when I first decided to start my online health and fitness coaching business, my mentor asked me how many hours a week I thought I had to spend on it.

I was pretty quick to respond – five. I thought I was SOOOOOOOOOOOOO busy! Don’t we all 😉

But within the first week, I realized how much I LOVED what I was doing. And so I quickly found ways to grab an extra hour here, and another thirty minutes there. Before I knew it, I had an extra TWENTY THREE hours in my week to work on building my business!

So whether you’re wanting to get in shape, start a business of your own, or just can’t seem to find enough hours in the day for whatever it is that you want to do…here are six things that I started doing that you can too (tomorrow!) to help you reach your goals!

Stopped Hitting SnoozeStop hitting snooze - Kreate the Life you Krave

I LOVE me some sleep!

I really do…this was a tough one for me, but I view it as a short-term sacrifice for something that will pay me back with a very worthwhile return on investment.

So I suck it up, and set my alarm for an hour earlier than I used to so that I have time to work out in the morning before work.

Now I know that I’m getting my workout done before life has a chance to get in the way later that day (and considering that my fitness IS MY BUSINESS, that’s kinda an important piece of the equation!)

But getting my workout done early also means that I have that extra time when I get home that afternoon to work on my business.

Kicked Country To The Curb

Johnjay and Rich in the morning on KISS FM, followed by country music on my way home…

That was my daily radio lineup on my drive to and from work every day.

But it didn’t take long after starting my business for me to realize that car time was precious time that could be spent on my business. That’s about five hours a week RIGHT THERE!

So I quickly decided to turn off the radio…ANY TIME spent driving in the car quickly became time for me to listen to webinars, training videos, or personal development. Calls with clients and mentoring other coaches on my team could easily be fit into this space too.

Bottom line…I found a way to fill any time spent doing mindless activities with mindFUL activities. I know, I know…driving isn’t mindless…but you know what I mean 😉

No More Shopping For The Sake Of Shopping

I bring my lunch to work every day, so I have no need to leave the office to go get food. But I definitely still need to break away for a bit just to maintain my sanity!

So I used to spend my lunch break wandering through Marshalls or TJ Maxx, running errands, or getting my nails done.

But once again, I realized pretty fast that there was ANOTHER five hours each week that I could spend on my business. Instead of SPENDING money, I could be MAKING it.

So now I spend my lunch break doing more productive things, like sitting in my car getting goofy looks from coworkers (with the air conditioning blasting on me in the summer), checking in with my clients, and inviting others to become one. Or kicking it in my office and typing up a blog post – just like I’m doing right now!

Do I still get my nails done? Of course…they’re just a little more grown out at times (okay, okay…a lot more) than they used to be while I wait for the weekend when I have more time 🙂

 

Turned Off The Boob Tube

Jon and I were never big TV watchers to begin with, but we did used to like watching a pre-recorded episode or two of Modern Family before bed. And sometimes we still do…but it’s pretty rare.

It probably added up to another three hours a week on average…you know where I’m going with this by now?

All of a sudden that became ANOTHER three hours that I could spend making money instead…DONE!

 

Just Say No!

I can’t do it all. I had to come to terms with that.

My evenings are when I have time to work on my business. So it’s just not reasonable for me to go to a wine dinner on Monday, happy hour on Tuesday, and then girl’s night on Wednesday.

I had to start planning out my social life in advance, and unless something special was going on, limit it to one event a week too.

Right up there with sleep, this was a tough one for me. But once again, I just keep telling myself that it’s a short-term sacrifice – one that if I make now, will allow for me to spend as much time as I want with the people that I love in the not-too-far-off future.

 

Let It Go!

So….I’m a little bit of a control freak. There are things that I absolutely HATE doing…but I just like them done MY way SO much, that I’ll do them anyway.

Yeah that had to change, haha! STAT!

I learned that “done” is better than “perfect.” Maybe it wasn’t done EXACTLY the way that I would’ve done it, but at the end of the day, at least it was done.

If I’d had to do it, then what else would NOT have gotten done? And to be perfectly honest, a lot of times the people who I ask to help me with something are even BETTER than me at what I ask them to help me with!

So I took baby steps…first, Jon took over laundry duty. Then his daughter Hayley started making dinner every night. Next I started asking other coaches who I mentor to help co-run our health and fitness online accountability groups. When I was ready to get my website and marketing set up, I asked a friend who is a web designer to help me.

Moral of the story…OUTSOURCE!

Laundry and dinner alone saves me AT LEAST five hours a week. Anything that I specifically didn’t have to be the one doing, and I could find someone else to help me with….I did.

I realized that if my time was so precious and limited, then I needed to be making the most of it.

 

Something’s Gotta Give

As much as I wish it weren’t true, you just can’t create more hours in the day. So if you’re gonna add something else to your plate, what are you gonna take OFF it?

How to make more time - Kreate the Life you KraveThat’s the way it works guys – it’s nothing earth shattering, it’s just something that most people aren’t willing to do.

So how do I stick with it? It’s simple really…every time I need a swift kick in the rear, I tell myself this:

“Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can have what others won’t have.”

Your dreams don’t work unless YOU do!

Pork Tacos with Spicy Sriracha Peanut Sauce

Who loves tacos????

IMG_2947I know….dumb question 🙂

These Pork Tacos with Spicy Sriracha Peanut Sauce are UH-mazing! I’d honestly eat them every single day, and it still boggles my mind that these are healthy with how freakin delicious they are!

Give ‘em a try and see for yourself! Not a pork fan? That’s okay – just swap it out for chicken (I prefer chicken thighs in a crockpot because they stay more “M-word” that I hate and refuse to say).

Oh and I know that this looks like it might take forever to make based on the ingredients list, but honestly, we’re talking 10 minutes of prep time on your end, if that!

 

Ingredients for Marinade:

1/2 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder

1/4 cup soy sauce

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1/4 cup sweet and sour sauce

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon sriracha

1 tablespoon sesame oil

 

Ingredients for Tacos:

3 pounds boneless pork shoulder

Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

16 small corn tortillas OR 8 whole wheat tortillas

4 cups shredded romaine

4 cups coleslaw mix

 

Ingredients for Peanut Sauce:

1/2 cup natural peanut butter OR almond butter

4 cloves garlic

1/4 cup soy sauce

3 tablespoons lime juice

1 teaspoon light brown sugar

2 tablespoons sriracha

1/2 cup almond milk

 

Directions:

  1. Combine all marinade ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Pour over pork loin inside of a ziplock bag and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to overnight to allow the pork to marinate.
  3. Remove the pork from refrigerator and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour.
  4. Place pork in crockpot and season pork with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Cook pork on high heat for 4 hours, or low heat for 8 hours.
  6. Meanwhile, combine sauce ingredients and stir until well combined. Set it aside until ready to use.
  7. Once done, shred pork using a fork and then mix with sauce.
  8. Serve ¾ cup of pork over 2 corn tortillas or 1 whole wheat tortilla with ½ cup of romaine and ½ cup of coleslaw mix.

 

*This recipe should make 8 servings total and tastes even better the next day, so feel free to save leftovers for lunch or later in the week!

 

**Ever heard of crockpot liners??? I just recently learned that these babies exist, and they are LIFE CHANGING!

 

***Follow the 21 Day Fix meal planning system? This one’s 1 RED, 1 YELLOW, 1 GREEN, and 1 ORANGE 🙂

Why You’re FAILING at Fitness!

Katie and Jon Working out Together When I first started on my own weight loss journey back in September 2011, I can honestly say that the ONLY reason that I made it through the entire nine weeks of Insanity without skipping a workout or eating something that I shouldn’t have was because I had Jon’s support!

He’d come to the conclusion that it would be easier if we were both eating the same thing, than if we were preparing two entirely different meals for ourselves every day. Plus, he didn’t want to be tempting me with things that I wasn’t going to eat since I’d committed to following the meal plan 100% – no cheats!

So at first he decided that he was going to just follow the meal plan with me. But it didn’t take long for Jon to realize that if he was going to follow such a clean meal plan for 9 weeks, that he may as well do the workouts too and see what kind of results he could get.

So he would wake up early every morning and work out before going to work. I get to work at 6:30 in the morning, and I didn’t want to wake up any earlier than I already had to, so I decided that I would work out every day when I got home instead.

It kept me accountable knowing that if Jon came home from work and I hadn’t done my workout that day because it was one of those days when I just didn’t FEEL like doing it, how disappointed in myself would I have ended up being?

The only reason that Jon was even doing all of this was to be supportive of ME! So I would’ve felt like I COMPLETELY let him down if he’d woken up early to do his workout, and ate healthy ALL day long, and I’d decided to skip a day and eat something that wasn’t on our meal plan! There were a lot of days when that mindset was what kept me on track.

I remember one Sunday, we had a busy day planned – watching football with my best friend and her husband at a bar before going to the Arizona Cardinals game. Jon got his workout in that morning, and we were short on time, so I decided to wait until we got home that afternoon.

Well of course by that time, my workout was the LAST thing that I wanted to do! Jon actually put on workout clothes for the second time that day and did that workout with me ALL OVER AGAIN so that I was sure to get it done!

There were so many times when I thought that I was going to fail, but with the daily support, motivation and encouragement that I received from Jon, I DID IT. I stuck it out, stayed consistent, and FINISHED IT.
And by the end of it all, I felt AMAZING! It has truly changed the way that I live my life, and how I feel every single day.

But I know that not everyone has a support system at home, and that is why an online health and fitness accountability group is SUCH an important piece of the puzzle – support is CRITICAL to your success!

I absolutely LOVE running these groups – they not only help keep me on track myself, but they are also a way for me to pay it forward to others. The groups provide you with that same daily support, motivation, and encouragement that I got from Jon, to make sure that you find your own success also.

We are all there for each other in any way that we need! We celebrate our successes, and help lift each other up when we fall (hey, we’re all human…it happens sometimes).

Katie and Jon

Bottom line…we are on our journeys together!

CLICK HERE to apply for a spot in my next 30-day online health + fitness accountability group!

 

 

10 Tips For Building A Business While Working A Full-Time Job

10 Tips for building your biz while working full-time

Think it can’t be done?

I’ve successfully launched my own business while working a full-time job. Here are my top ten tips to help you do the same!

1. TREAT YOUR BUSINESS LIKE A BUSINESS

If you treat it like a hobby, it will pay you like a hobby. If you treat it like a business, it will pay you like a business.

2. BE PREPARED TO GIVE UP MOST OF YOUR PERSONAL TIME

Time that you used to spend watching tv, taking a nap, going to happy hour with your friends…it’s gonna have to go on the back burner….for now. Ask yourself if how you are spending your time is moving you closer to reaching your goals – if it’s not, re-evaluate if you could be spending your time doing something that would.

3. SET BUSINESS HOURS AND STICK TO THEM

When you have a lot going on in your day, it’s important to schedule time into it to work on your business. Treat that time like any other appointment on your calendar – you wouldn’t no-show at a doctor’s appointment, would you? On the other hand, it can also be easy to spend every waking moment (and then some) on your business when you’re first getting started. You’re most likely incredibly passionate about what you’ve chosen to do, and it can’t happen fast enough, right? 🙂 But it’s still important for you to spend time with your family and friends, recharge your batteries, and get some sleep too!

4. MAKE THE MOST OF EVERY MINUTE

There are so many little chunks of time throughout the day that put together add up to a lot of extra time! Are you getting ready for work, driving home from the office, cooking dinner, folding laundry…? Listen to training or personal development to help grow the skills that you need as the owner of your business. Are you sitting in the waiting room at the doctor’s office, or in the carpool line to pick up your kids? Thanks to smartphones, you can work your business from pretty much anywhere!

5. AVOID DISTRACTIONS

Multitasking reduces your productivity by 40%! Focus on the task at hand, and don’t move on to the next until you have completed it. Minimize the potential distractions while doing so, and get comfortable with ignoring them as they pop up. That phone call, text message, email, or Facebook notification can wait…I promise!

6. IMPLEMENT SYSTEMS

The faster that you can streamline certain activities in your business, the faster you can scale it, saving time and increasing revenue. More time and more money = a very good thing 🙂

7. OUTSOURCE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE

As efficient as you may get with your time, there are still only so many hours in a day. Anything that does not absolutely positively require YOU to complete…outsource to someone else if at all possible. Get your family involved! They’ll have a better understanding of what you’re spending so much time on and feel more involved and accepting of it. There are also plenty of websites out there where you can hire help at a reasonable price. If you don’t have the money to spend hiring someone right now, see what kind of trade for goods or services you might be able to make.

8. SET REALISTIC AND MEASURABLE GOALS

You’re going to get frustrated with how slowly things are moving due to your lack of time available to spend on your business. Achieving small wins, frequently, will help keep you motivated and moving forward in the right direction.

9. ATTEND NETWORKING EVENTS

It’s incredibly important for you to surround yourself with like-minded people. Only 10% of the population has what it takes to build a successful business, so there are a lot of people out there who won’t be able to relate to you and your goals. People will either inspire you or they will drain you, so choose who you surround yourself with wisely.

10. VISUALIZE YOURSELF HAVING ALREADY ACHIEVED THE LEVEL OF SUCCESS THAT YOU ARE STRIVING FOR

If you can’t picture yourself in your own mind being extremely successful, dominating your market, and running a phenomenal business…then chances are you never will.

Starting your business while working a full-time job is definitely not easy, but it is definitely worth it! When you feel like quitting, remember WHY you started!

5 Tips To Stay On Track With Your Health & Fitness This Weekend

Stay healthy this weekend

Ever feel like you work SOOOOOOO hard to stay on track all week long, and then you COMPLETELY undo all of your progress over the weekend? You cringe as you step on the scale on Monday morning…and then wonder why you even bother if every week you just start back at square one?

Yup…that used to be me…I wanted to make healthy changes in my life…but I also wanted to go out on a date and eat what I wanted, and socialize with my friends still too!

Over the past year and a half, I’ve learned how to find balance in my life. Here are my top 5 tips to help you do that too:

1.Schedule ONE (yes, you heard me right…ONE) cheat meal into your weekend, and have the rest of your meals for the weekend completely planned out. In fact, have them prepped as much as possible too! We tend to be on the go on weekends, and if you can’t easily heat something up or grab a snack to take with you, it’s ALL too easy to make an unhealthy choice instead!

If you will be eating more meals than just your one cheat meal out at a restaurant, then PLAN AHEAD! Look at the menus for the restaurants that you will be going to and pick out ahead of time what you are going to order. When you get there, don’t even open up the menu to be tempted by something else!

If you don’t know where you will be going to look at a menu ahead of time, then at least have an idea of what you will order – for example, veggies and a serving of protein (nothing fried or slathered in high-calorie sauces).

And eat a small snack before you go so that you’re not starving and accidentally inhale a bread basket or chow down on all of the chips and salsa before your meal gets there. (Can you tell that I speak from personal experience haha?)

2.Stay as on track as possible for as long into the day as possible. It’s usually pretty easy to wake up and eat a healthy breakfast right off the bat. But we all know that the later in the day it gets, the harder it is to make good choices (especially once you’ve had a few drinks 😉 ). That’s why I always save my cheat meal for dinner!

3.Go light on the carbs. Other than my cheat meal, I typically eliminate carbs from my diet on the weekend (or at least scale them back) if I plan on having wine…which let’s be honest…is basically every weekend haha!

Are you gonna be going over to friends’ houses for pool parties, or having people over to your place for one? Offer to bring something so that you know you can make a healthy contribution, or ask them to bring something healthy when they ask what they can bring! Veggies and hummus is a filling snack and WAY better for you than chips and dip! Guacamole, salad, fruit salad…all of those are great options!

Is someone gonna be grilling burgers? That’s fine! Just ditch the bun, and try to stick with cheese, salsa, and guacamole instead of processed condiments!

4.Drink lots of water! I try to make a point to have a glass of water with each of my five meals. And if I’m drinking wine, I make an effort to alternate each alcoholic beverage with a glass of water. Not only does it keep you from consuming as many calories, but it also keeps you more hydrated so that you are less likely to feel crappy the next day…which we all know leads to eating greasy “hangover” foods and skipping workouts 😉

5.Don’t skip your workouts! We’re all busy with plans with family and friends on the weekends, so get your workout in FIRST THING before you leave the house for the day and anything else can get in the way. If that means you have to wake up 30 minutes earlier to fit it in…DO IT!

I know this seems right now like it might be a drag, but just give it a try for ONE weekend and see what you think. My guess is you’ll find that you don’t regret the decisions that you made after the fact, and that you don’t feel like you were deprived of good food or a good time either!

And come Monday morning when you step on that scale (or better yet…take your pictures and measurements!), you’ll probably be MUCH happier with where you’re at too!

Want to learn more tips like this for living a healthier lifestyle while still living a balanced life? CLICK THE LINK BELOW to apply for a spot in my next 30-day online health and fitness accountability group, starting June 13th!

https://katiebrenneman.wufoo.com/forms/accountability-group-application/

How to Set Yourself Up for A Successful Week With Your Health & Fitness!

I used to have lazy Sundays….all day long….every weekend…

But then I realized that if I wanted to have a successful week with my health and fitness, I had to do something to actually set myself up for success.

So now I always set aside time on Sundays to get a few things done that I know will help me reach my goals for the rest of the week.

And unless I’m playing golf bright and early before it gets too hot…I like to get it all done ASAP so that I have the rest of the day to do as I please 🙂Otherwise it’s too easy to go out by the pool, and find myself having too great of a time to come back inside and be an adult.

So how do I stay on track on the weekends and also plan for a successful week?

1. I make our meal plan for the week first thing…usually while I’m still sitting in bed 🙂 I map it out day by day and meal by meal so that I know exactly what is happening when. If I have something going on during the week, I want to think about it ahead of time so that I can make a meal in advance if need be. If we have plans to go to dinner, or a party, or we’re going away for the weekend, I want to be able to see all of that laid out so that I can plan my week and meals accordingly.

2.I schedule my workouts into my day so that I treat them like I would any other appointment in my calendar. I wouldn’t just skip out on a doctor’s appointment because I don’t feel like going anymore, right? So I think about my workouts the same exact way. On weekends…they happen first thing in the morning if possible before I leave the house for the day. Since I am going to be camping this weekend and will be without an internet connection, it was helpful for me to plan ahead because I need to switch my normal workout routine around a bit so that Saturday is my rest day.

3. I always go grocery shopping for the entire week. So once I make my meal plan, I also write out a grocery list. Then I hit up the store and get all of my food all at once to save time and trips to the store during the week when I know that I won’t want to go.

4. I do a little bit of meal prep to make things easier on myself during the week. I typically make a breakfast that we will have every day for the rest of the week, and then portion it out into baggies or containers so that we can just grab it and go. I might pre-package up our afternoon snack also, or pre-cook chicken to add to meals later in the week.

5. I still aim to drink at least half my bodyweight in ounces of water every day. It’s harder for me to make this happen on weekends for some reason. So any time I sit down for a meal or go for a drive in the car, I try to make a point to keep my water on me and get some in.

6. I check into my virtual health and wellness community to report on how I’m doing with my fitness and nutrition over the weekend, and share how I’m prepping for the week ahead. Knowing that people there are counting on me to show up is a HUGE motivating factor for me to stay on track and make better (not always perfect) choices! And it works both ways by the way! Sometimes I’m not feeling super motivated, but I see how someone else is crushing their weekend and it reminds me that it’s a choice…it’s MY CHOICE…to make my weekend what I want it to be.

What will you do this weekend to set yourself up for success next week?

Want to learn how to meal plan? Or are you missing the accountability piece in your life?

You DON’T have to do it alone! (Plus it’s WAY more fun not too anyway!) Join my online health and wellness community and get yourself accountability partners like you, AND a coach to help you reach your goals!

Just click the link below to complete the application and be considered for the group!

http://tinyurl.com/joinKTLYK

Top 6 Tips for Eating Healthier

If you’d asked me what “healthy eating” meant six years ago, I probably would’ve told you Lean Cuisines, anything “diet” or “fat-free,” and lettuce.

Now I think to stop and ask questions like, “Huh…how exactly did they remove all of the fat from that anyway???”

In other words…I’ve come a LONG way haha!

So here are some of my favorite tips I’ve learned over the years to help you feel better in just a few short days!

 

Clean Eating Tip #1 –  Drink water throughout the day

You should aim to drink HALF of your body weight in ounces of water each day…do the math NOW and figure out how many ounces you need to be drinking. If you’re working out, or live in Arizona like me where it’s dry, then you may need to increase your water intake to compensate for that.

Staying hydrated is as important as your eating!  I promise you…drinking more water alone will make a HUGE difference in your waistline.  A lot of the time when we THINK we are hungry, we are really just dehydrated. Next time you THINK you are hungry, drink a glass of water and wait fifteen minutes…if it’s not time for you to eat again, you’ll likely notice that you no longer feel hungry!

Clean Eating Tip #2 –  Eat smaller portions

It’s not enough to just eat clean!  You have to eat the right AMOUNTS of each food too.

The image below can serve as a good point of reference if you need to eyeball something instead of actually measuring it out.

 

Clean Eating Tip #3 –  Eat breakfast – you’ll be more likely to stick to smaller portions throughout the day

I know, I know…no one has time to make breakfast before they leave for work. I typically pick one meal for the week, and make it over the weekend so that it’s all set to go during the week.

Check out one of my all-time favorites below…1 scrambled egg, 1/2 cup of cooked ground turkey with taco seasoning, 1/2 cup of baked yams, 1 cup of roasted broccoli (or any other veggies that you prefer)…I throw it all together in a food container so that I can grab it and go as needed!

 

Clean Eating Tip #4 –  Eat more often – 4 to 5 times a day

Speed up your metabolism by eating every 2-3 hours. Remember, meals should not be the standard restaurant portions! So eating on salad plates instead of dinner size plates can be a good start too!

 

Eating this way can take a little bit of getting used to, but once your body adjusts, you will realize that eating clean does NOT mean starving yourself!  You will start to get hungry like clockwork, and your smaller meals will hold you over until it’s time for your next one.

Successfully fit people eat throughout the day so that their metabolism stays consistent. People who skip meals have higher levels of cortisol, which causes weight gain. Plus, you won’t ever find yourself in a position where you are STARVING and therefore overeat!

Clean Eating Tip #5 –  Avoid sodas…diet included

I don’t think I need to explain why regular soda is bad for you…it’s loaded with sugar and absolutely zero nutritional value….completely worthless calories.

But diet sodas too?  Instead of sugar, they are sweetened with artificial sweeteners, which are known to:

1.Trick your taste buds – Exposing your taste buds to these high-intensity sweeteners makes them less receptive to natural sources of sweetness, such as fruit. When your taste buds get dulled, you’re more likely to seek out sweeter and sweeter foods.

  1. Trick your gut – The sweet taste sends a signal to your gut that something high calorie is on its way, so your gut anticipates foods that do, in fact, have a high calorie count. But when those foods don’t arrive, your gut doesn’t utilize the foods efficiently, and that causes a cascading effect that interferes with your body’s hunger signals.
  1. Mess with your hormones – When you taste sweet foods, even if they have zero calories, your body still releases insulin as if you’d eaten sugar. Insulin leads to blood sugar spikes, which increase cravings. Research also suggests that artificial sweeteners prevent your body from producing GLP-1, a hormone that controls blood sugar levels and feelings of fullness.
  1. Make you overeat – .They trick you with the way they feel in your mouth.  Artificially sweetened foods often have a thinner consistency and texture than sugar-sweetened foods, and therefore aren’t as satisfying.
  1. Be genetically modified – Artificial sweeteners such as sucralose, aspartame, neotame, and erythritol can all be made from corn, soy, or sugar beets. In the United States, the vast majority of those three crops have been genetically altered to resist or produce harmful pesticides.  That sounds healthy…

Clean Eating Tip #6 –  Eliminate refined sugar and white flour

When selecting foods like breads, pastas, cereals, rice, and crackers, always go for the whole-grain option. Don’t just believe the health claims on the outside of the box either!  Read the ingredients to make sure that the product is ACTUALLY made with only 100% whole grains – not a combination of whole grains and refined grains, which is unfortunately how a lot of “whole grain” products are made. The white flour or other refined grain alternative is simply high in calories, and low in nutrition.  Items containing wheat must say WHOLE wheat…not just “wheat.”

No refined sweeteners such as sugar, any form of corn syrup, cane juice, or the artificial stuff like Splenda. Avoid store-bought products containing high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and those that have some form of sugar (or sweetener) listed among the top three ingredients.”

So give these six tips a whirl for FIVE DAYS…that’s it…ONLY five days…and see how you feel! I can pretty much GUARANTEE that after about two or three days, you’re gonna be noticing some pretty big differences!

And if you want to continue experimenting with clean eating, send me an email at Katie@KreatethelifeyouKrave.com and ask me to send you a FREE copy of my Show Your Body Who’s BOSS 5-Day Clean Eating ebook! I’ll provide you with the meal plan, the grocery list, and the recipes for the week…brainless and delicious!

Cupcakes make you LEAN and lifting weights bulks you up

Cupcakes Make You LEAN…

…And lifting weights bulks you up!

Oh wait, I got that backwards 😉 But honestly, that’s what I used to think! (Not the cupcake part, but the weight lifting? Yeah!)

If I wanted to lose a few LBs, I’d go running…or hit the elliptical machine HARD! At the gym, I LOVED ME some kickboxing or spin class.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not ragging on cardiovascular exercise…but at times when I was DESPERATE to burn fat, it turns out that I was missing out on one of the BEST fat-burning methods out there…LIFTING WEIGHTS! Plus weightlifting has a TON of other benefits to it too…read on for my favorite 5!

Burn More Fat

Lifting weights speeds up your metabolism, meaning you continue to burn fat for several hours AFTER your workout! I just finished an 8-week fitness program with 3-4 days a week of HEAVY weight training (you can check out my before and after pics from it below), and after only ONE week, I noticed that my metabolism was RAGING afterwards! I had to frontload my calories for the day because I was getting hungrier faster than normal for about 6 hours after my workout!

Speaking Of Metabolism…

If more muscle means a FASTER metabolism, then the opposite has to hold true too – less muscle means a SLOWER metabolism. Pretty sure NO ONE wants that!

Women are already predisposed to muscle loss as we age. Now throw in the fact that losing weight from dieting can actually be a result of losing MUSCLE…let’s just say that we’re setting ourselves up for long-term failure.

Big _____ Run In My Family

I used to think that women were just predisposed to certain body types based on their genes…wide hips…bulky thighs…flabby arms…everyone seems to have that ONE trouble area.

But it’s not always true!

Lifting weights can actually CHANGE the shape of your body! It can trim you down in places that you didn’t think were possible, and create new curves where you never imagined seeing them.

Do You Run All Day Long?

Seriously…do you RUN everywhere that you go? Down the hall to the restroom? To the kitchen when it’s time for lunch? Haha, think about how ridiculous that would look!

But do you haul groceries into the house from your car? Do you lug heavy suitcases when you go on trips? Do you have to drag your 140 lb dog into the vet against his will? I KNOW I DO!

Lifting weights helps improve your FUNCTIONAL fitness (you know, the things that you actually do on a REGULAR basis). And the Mayo Clinic actually found that regular weight training can make you as much as FIFTY PERCENT STRONGER in just six months!

Disease Prevention

The Journal of the American Medical Association reports that only thirty minutes of weightlifting a week reduces your risk of developing heart disease by TWENTY THREE percent! Considering that heart disease is the #1 killer of women older than age 25, and that it runs in my family, I’d say that’s pretty damn motivating!

The Proof Is In The Pudding

Still not convinced that weights are the way to go? Here are my before and after pics from that program I was telling you about….

So no ladies, you WON’T bulk up – we don’t have the hormones to “get big” like guys do!

As long as you fuel your body with healthy foods, and burn more calories than you consume, you’ll turn your body into a fat burning MACHINE!

 

Don’t know what you’re doing and need some help getting started with a weight training program??? Shoot me an email at Katie@KreatethelifeyouKrave.com and we’ll get you all set up with one that’s a good fit for you!

Clean Eating Mac n’ Cheese

So I’m starting a thing!

I’m asking people I know for their all-time favorite foods, then cleaning them up and working them into my meal plan for the week, and sharing them with the individuals who requested those foods!

A few requests came in for Mac N’ Cheese last night, and coincidentally that’s what’s already on the menu for tonight’s dinner!

ENJOY!
Chicken Broccoli Mac

Chicken & Broccoli Mac n’ Cheese


(4 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each)

INGREDIENTS:



4 oz. dry whole wheat elbow macaroni (or pasta)
4 tsp. organic grass-fed butter (or organic coconut oil)
2 Tbsp. unbleached whole wheat flour
1½ cups unsweetened almond milk
1¼ cups freshly grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese
3 cups cooked chopped chicken breast, boneless, skinless
4 cups chopped broccoli florets, steamed
1 tsp. sea salt (or Himalayan salt)
½ tsp. ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS:



1. Cook macaroni according to package directions. (Do not use salt or oil if suggested in directions.) Set aside.
2. Melt butter in large saucepan over medium heat.
3. Add flour; cook, whisking constantly, for 1 minute, or until brown (don’t let it burn).
4. Slowly whisk in almond milk; cook, whisking constantly, for 1 to 2 minutes, or until mixture thickens and there are no lumps.
5. Reduce heat to low. Add cheese; cook, whisking constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until melted.
6. Add macaroni, chicken, broccoli, salt, and pepper; cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute, or until heated through.
7. Serve immediately.

VARIATIONS:



• Use quinoa pasta and gluten-free flour if you’re following a gluten-free lifestyle
• Asparagus, green beans or Brussels sprouts can be substituted for broccoli
• A combination of cheeses like cheddar and Gouda, cheddar and Monterey jack, and cheddar and Asiago can be substituted for sharp cheddar