It seems like it was literally yesterday that I was updating you with my week 2 results from the 21-Day Fix, and here I sit, a 21-Day Fix graduate! I honestly cannot believe how fast these past 3 weeks have gone! This week was a little different than the first two weeks. First off all, I missed my first workouts (gasp!) It started at the beginning of the week. Saturday was the date of an annual run called the Polar Bear Run which benefits a local YMCA. It's a 5k race, and for fun there's a person dressed up as a polar bear who runs the race, too. If you finish before the polar bear, your race shirt says, "I beat the bear!" and if you don't, it says, "The bear beat me". We not only beat the bear, we both placed in our age groups, Scott came in 2nd in his age group, I came in 3rd in mine! I still got in my Total Body Cardio that day, but I'm just going to count the run as my Pilates. :)
The rest of the week went great. This week I made the Asian Citrus Vinaigrette from the 21-Day Fix recipes and it was really good! I also started counting quinoa, beans and lentils as a red container this week (instead of only a yellow container), so I had a little more flexibility with my meals each day.
Here's where the week got interesting... the 3-Day Quick Fix. The 3-Day Quick Fix is an OPTIONAL 3-day bikini prep meal plan that you can do any time (and only once) during the 21-Day Fix, so I decided to do it for the final three days. The 3-Day Quick Fix has you eating six meals for the day, but there is MUCH more structure with the foods you can have during those three days. No blue containers, no orange containers, no purple containers, and only two yellow containers; one for oatmeal as meal #1, and one for sweet potatoes as meal #2. The remainder of the meals are red and green containers (protein and veggies) and a total of four teaspoons of coconut oil for the day. You're also instructed to drink a full gallon of water a day while on the 3-Day Quick Fix.
The meals for the 3-Day Quick Fix were pretty un-exciting, but knowing that it was only three days, it was totally mentally doable. And surprisingly, it was more food than I had expected! By day three, I actually skipped my final meal because I wasn't hungry.
My next skipped workout came on the very last day. It was supposed to be my final day of yoga, but it was also the same day as Buffalo's Shamrock Run 8k, and Team Synergy was in full effect! Let me just tell you how insanely proud I am of everyone who came out and completed it. About 15 people total, a mix of coaches and challengers from Team Pure Synergy, all came out to brave the cold and run 4.97 miles through Buffalo's Old First Ward. What's even more amazing is that the majority of those that came out had never run an 8k, never run a 5k, and never even run one mile before, but they took that first step, signed up, and every single one of them completed the race with a HUGE smile on their face. We had such a great time, that we're even talking about signing up for one new run a month now to do as a team! So yes, it was totally worth skipping yoga for. :)
And now for my results! After 21 days I lost a total of 5 lbs, putting my total weight lost since Christmas at 11.6 lbs! Just a disclaimer: your results may differ (obviously!) If you have more weight to lose, you may lose weight faster than someone like me who only had those last stubborn 5 lbs to lose. Those 5 lbs may not sound like much, but I'm pretty impressed with my pics! Not only that, I feel so much stronger and my energy has been sky high. My core is stronger now than I think it ever has been in my entire life, and the best part... I know have a whole new outlook on clean eating. I learned just how easy it really can be. I learned what foods to eat and how much of them to eat (turns out I was way off with my portions before!) And I think the one thing that stands out the most to me is that today is day 22, one day after finishing, and I still ate the same way I would have if I was on the 21-Day Fix plan. It's now a lifestyle change, not a fad diet, which is the most important takeaway that I have from this. How often have you done a "diet" or meal plan, only to eat all the foods that you "couldn't" have the next day? And usually gain all the weight you lost back right away? That's what was so great about this plan. If I wanted chocolate or wine, I could! I never felt deprived and the list of foods for me to choose from was HUGE! There honestly was never a day that I said to myself, "I wish I could have ____".
My current accountability group is about to start on their third and final week of the 21-Day Fix tomorrow. You can find some of their amazing results from their journey here. My next group starts in just ONE week and will fill up fast! If you're sick of dieting, counting calories or points, stuck at a weight loss plateau, or are just ready for a change, send me a message on facebook or contact me here to learn more and reserve your spot for my next group!
Wow! This past week has flown by! This past Sunday I started a brand new program called the 21-Day Fix. For those that don't know, the 21-Day Fix is a 21 day fitness and nutrition program that focuses on portion control to help people learn how to eat clean, lose weight and build lean muscle. Some of the results coming out of the Test Groups have been amazing! People are losing an average of 10-15 lbs in 21 days, and there are several people who have done multiple rounds and have lost over 100 lbs!!
I know that a lot of people who follow my journey are vegan like myself, so I am so excited to share with you how I put together my meals every day!
The meal plan is sooo easy to follow. It gives you calculations to figure out how many of each color container you get to eat in a day. Each color represents a different category of food. There is also a category which uses a teaspoon (which is not included in the package, but hey, who doesn't own a teaspoon?) Basically, you pick a food from the provided list, and if it fits, you eat it! The meal plan also includes a couple "Zings", or "cheats", which allow you to have chocolate, cookies and even wine while on the plan. The containers LOOK much smaller than they are. Once you add the food and get them arranged on a plate, you find that they actually hold quite a bit of food!
The fitness plan includes 8 workouts which range from cardio, cardio with weights, upper body, lower body, yoga, abs, pilates, and even one called Dirty 30, a 30-minute total body workout. All workouts are 30 minutes in length, with the exception of the ab workout, which is 10 minutes. I got a little carried away at first when I saw there was a doubles schedule (two workouts a day) and it wasn't until day 3 that I noticed that the doubles schedule was actually only for week 3. (Oops! I'm leaving for a Beachbody cruise in 6 weeks so I have abs on the brain!) Thankfully that same day I found out that if you're already used to working out, that you can start the doubles week from day 1. You would just need to readjust the amount of each color you get in a day (and it tells you exactly how to do that. Simple!)
Below is a list of all of the vegan options for each color container. So many choices! For non-vegans following the plan, your red category is much larger, and there are a couple additional items in the blue category. Paleos, your yellow category would need to be adjusted (I think, I honestly don't know much about Paleo eating).
And THIS is everything I was eating during week 1! I've color coded everything to correspond with the color of container to make it easier on you. Just a disclaimer: I eat weird. Even before I was vegan, I was totally ok with eating the same foods and eating them in strange combinations. You could totally put these together using recipes and make some amazing meals out of them if you're into that kind of thing. I promise I'll work on doing more of a variety (stay tuned next week for my sushi I made today!), but for right now, it's a lot of smoothies and stir fry's. Nice and simple!
I use both vegan chocolate and vegan tropical Shakeology. If I'm making a smoothie I'm more likely to use tropical, and if I'm just mixing it with water, I almost always use chocolate. And I use a variety of protein powders. This week I rotated between chocolate Vega Sport Recovery Protein and chocolate Sun Warrior raw protein blend.
And here are my results so far! After week 1 I am down 1.4 lbs! It may not SEEM like a lot, but I FEEL much lighter, more toned, and holy abs batman! I swear, Autumn (the trainer) adds an ab workout on to everything. I don't think I've ever done this many planks in my life! But I'm definitely not complaining, just getting me closer to my goal of having abs by my 35th birthday!
For this next week, I'm going to reevaluate my calories and bump myself up to the next calorie range, so I'll be getting a few more color containers each day. I'm also going to experiment more with different recipes, including the salad dressing recipes that come with the plan.
I'm going to be putting together an accountability group for others who are interested in doing the 21-Day Fix themselves. It's a small, private facebook group where I'll post daily posts to help keep everyone on track for the 21 days. My first group is set to officially kick off tomorrow and SOLD OUT in only 3 days! If you'd like to be in my next 21-Day Fix accountability group, please fill out this form and I'll get back to you asap!
If you have any questions about the 21-Day Fix, it's workouts, meal plan or results you can expect, post them in the comments below or message me on facebook!
I get asked this question a lot by people who are looking to start juicing, "What kind of juicer should I get?" First let me say that juicing and blending (smoothies) is different. There are pros and cons of each, I'll let you do your own research on that. But if you've decided to try juicing, this is the place to be! :)
There are two basic categories of juicers, centrifugal and masticating. Deciding what kind of juicer to get depends a lot on what you'll be juicing. Questions to ask yourself are:
Centrifugal juicers are great for people who are new to juicing. They're faster to juice, faster to clean, less expensive, and require less prep work. The opening shoot is larger so you can often fit an entire apple in it without having to cut it into smaller pieces first. They are great for harder produce like apples, carrots and beets, but they don't juice leafy greens as well. One way to juice leafy greens in a centrifugal juicer is to compact them into a tight ball, and add them between hard foods like apples and carrots. Juicing oranges and other soft produce can often create a lot of foam in your juice. It's also believed there is more nutrient loss with centrifugal juicers because of the grating action and high speed of spinning that occurs.
Masticating juicers have a much smaller opening, so food will need to be cut into smaller pieces before juicing. They're also much slower to produce juice, but can often produce more juice for the same amount of produce. They are great for juicing oranges and other citrus as well as leafy greens including wheatgrass. If you are planning on juicing wheatgrass, you can also get a hand crank wheatgrass juicer pretty inexpensive.
Whether you choose a masticating or centrifugal juicer, one thing I like to do to get more juice is to run the pulp through the juicer once. For a centrifugal juicer, you can just ball up the pulp and run it back through the juicer, and for a masticating juicer I just send it back through the shoot. This doesn't work for wheatgrass juice, though, because wheatgrass pulp comes out pretty dry the first time through. I compost my pulp, but there are also recipes online to make raw, dehydrated crackers out of them, too.
These are the three juicers that we have. I use our centrifugal juicer more because of the speed, and Scott uses our masticating juicer more because of the benefits. All orange juice is made in our masticating juicer, too, including our Nature's Kool Aid juice.
Happy juicing! :)
There's been a lot of talk about Shakeology in my challenge groups lately so I wanted to write a post to explain both HOW I feel about Shakeology and WHY I feel the way I do. I will start this by saying that yes, I am a Beachbody coach. Yes, I get paid for selling Shakeology. I also get paid for selling a plethora of other nutritional supplements, meal replacements, vitamins, nutritionals, bars, etc. through Beachbody. But, I bet you didn't know that. Why? Because I don't use them myself. When I started coaching, doing this as a full time job was the last thing on my mind. You see, I am a Beachbody coach, first and foremost, because I want to HELP people. If I wouldn't use a product myself, I'm not going to recommend it to others. If I believe a product is going to improve your health and get you the best results possible, you're going to hear about it. A lot. Am I going to push it on you? No. When you tell me you want to get the best results ever am I going to recommend it? Hell yes! Because my ultimate goal is to help people, I also don't require people to be using Shakeology, or to even doing a Beachbody workout, to be in my challenge group, which a lot of other coaches do. I'm here to support you no matter what workout you're doing and no matter what your diet looks like.
Which brings me to my next topic, taste. I know I don't exactly eat like everyone else, but I seriously LOVE the taste of Shakeology. I started using vegan tropical Shakeology when it first came out in early 2012, and in June 2012 when vegan chocolate Shakeology came out I added that flavor in, also. The first week or so, I'll admit, the vegan chocolate had a "green" taste to it, but you know what? I still loved it! You know why? Because I knew just what was in it and what it was doing for my body. When you stop looking at foods as "pleasure items" and start looking at them as what they're meant to be, FUEL FOR YOUR BODY, your thoughts and tastes change. I stopped eating cheese and dairy 4 years ago this month. Literally if you had told me one month before that that I'd never eat it again, I would have thought you had lost your mind. I get asked all the time how hard it is and if I crave it, and honestly, it's so much easier than I ever would have thought for one single reason, I educated myself to the benefits. That's it! When you EDUCATE YOURSELF TO THE BENEFITS of the food you're putting in your body (or not putting in your body!) you begin to look at it in a whole new light. Cheese didn't turn into an "I CAN'T eat that but I want it" food, it turned into an "I could eat it if I wanted, but I know the health benefits of NOT eating it" food. That's the same with Shakeology (only I still swear it tastes great!) When you educate yourself to the benefits of Shakeology, you look forward to it. You know you're NOURISHING YOUR BODY. You know you're taking that extra step toward your health and your results. If you're looking for a milkshake, go have a milkshake. If you're looking for great tasting nutrition, then have a Shakeology!
When you educate yourself to the benefits, you slowly start to see just what is in Shakeology. There are numerous other "health shakes" on the market, too many to count, that probably cost a lot less and taste a lot better. If you're only looking for taste and cost, then by all means, buy them! BUT, when you truly put your HEALTH first, and flip over the bag of Shakeology and COMPARE it to the rest of the shakes that are out on the market, you'll very quickly see that there is NO comparison. I can't stress this enough, there is no other whole foods meal replacement shake on the market that even comes close to the nutrition you get from Shakeology. That's it. Shakeology has over 70 superfoods, antioxidants, wheatgrass, maca, digestive enzymes, pre and probiotics, the list goes on. When's the last time you priced out wheatgrass, maca, digestive enzymes or probiotics? If you were to buy just those four ingredients separately to use daily you would already be spending well over what you'd spend on Shakeology in one month. And when's the last time you tasted wheatgrass or maca? Let me tell you, Scott and I have eaten some pretty nasty things in our day in the pursuit of health, including wheatgrass and maca. I get the shivers just smelling wheatgrass, and there is no concoction big enough that I've been able to make to mask the taste of maca in a smoothie. And you're telling me I can get both of these in Shakeology for a fraction of the cost AND it tastes great! You better believe I'm choosing Shakeology. And if it didn't taste as great as it does? With all those benefits, I'd still be crazy NOT to drink it.
All this, and I haven't even gotten to the benefits yet! So many people see so many benefits when they use Shakeology DAILY. (Notice I said daily, NOT when you remember, not when it's convenient, DAILY.) This is why I don't give out Shakeology samples anymore, one try isn't going to tell you anything. You need to use it daily to see the benefits. Just like eating healthy or working out for one day isn't going to make you lose a year of weight gained, Shakeology also has a cumulative effect. Some results are going to be subtle. My hairdresser kept telling me for months how she couldn't believe how long and healthy my hair was getting. It wasn't until one day she said, "Ok, I've got to know! What hair vitamins are you taking?" Then it dawned on me, it was Shakeology! I've noticed my skin clear up, I have more energy, I don't have as many cravings. For others it's drastic. One of my challengers dropped her cholesterol by over 50 points once she started using Shakeology and working out with TurboFire. Others have been able to get off of prescription medications, including diabetes medications, lower their cholesterol and blood pressure, and improve their digestion.
So, what's your health worth? What ARE you spending $4 a day on? Are you going out to eat for lunch? Are you stopping at Starbucks in the morning? Maybe you're not spending $4 a day, but what about $28 a week? Are you going out for drinks on the weekend? Are you getting a manicure or pedicure? Buying some new clothes? The price of Shakeology may seem like a lot up front, especially because when's the last time you bought 30 days worth of meals at one time, but I promise you, your health is worth it. YOU'RE WORTH IT! People are so quick to spend money on menial things that will be gone in no time, and will not effect their lives in any positive way in the long run. Forget about short term gratification. Stop putting a dollar sign on the importance of your health. VALUE YOUR HEALTH!
Sorry if this was a little longer than most of my posts, but I really wanted to make sure you understand just what Shakeology is, and why I'm so passionate about it. If YOU'RE ready to INVEST IN YOUR HEALTH, comment below or message me here and I will get back to you asap and answer any other questions you may have about Shakeology!
Just finished up Day 1 of Shaun T's new workout Focus T25 and I'm just going to say this right now... for those of you who think you can't get a killer workout at home in only 25 minutes, you've just met your match! T25 is only 25 minutes a day, 5 days a week and is broken into two standard phases, alpha and beta, which both are 5 weeks long, and a third bonus phase called gamma.
So I'm not "officially" starting T25 until the rest of my challenge group starts it on July 8th, but I was able to get my hands on it last week at Coach Summit before it was released to the public and I couldn't wait any longer to see what it was like! So I caved, and now I can say that Day 1 of T25 is done!
This program was released at the perfect time, too. Who has time to workout in the summer!? Not me! But I CAN find 25 minutes a day! What I love about this workout so far, besides the time of the workouts, is that anyone can do it. There is a "modifier" in each workout showing you how to do the moves low impact, but you can still attempt to follow along with the others in the program if you're more fit. (Trust me, I tried, but I had my hands on my knees gasping for air a few times!)
I'm also not typically a heavy sweater when working out so I was amazed when I was dripping with sweat by the end of the 25 minutes, and I looked over and Scott was the same. After just the first two minutes my calves were on fire, it took four minutes for my quads to be on fire, and I was sweating so much that I only worked out in my shorts and sports bra and I swear I could see my abs developing right before my eyes!
T25 was just released to the pubic two days ago, and spots are filling up FAST in our T25 challenge group that starts July 8th. If you want to join, make sure you reserve your spot ASAP!
"Ain't nobody got time for that!" is no longer an excuse!
If you're like me you've probably never heard of jicama before, or if you have, you've probably walked past it in the grocery store thinking, "what is that?", "who eats that?" and "what do they do with it?" When it turned up on the Ultimate Reset shopping list for not one, not two, but all three weeks I knew I was about to find out!
Surprisingly, it was easy to find and available at both of my local grocery stores so someone out there must be eating it!
So what is jicama? First off, it's pronounced HEE-kah-mah... but I didn't find this out until after I was calling it Ji-kah-mah, so now the real pronunciation sounds funny to me. It's also called a "yam bean" or "Mexican turnip". Originating from Mexico and South America, jicama is a root vegetable with a papery brown cover and a crisp, white inside like a potato or apple. It is from the legume family and grows on vines that can reach up to 20' in length. Only the root should be eaten as the rest of the plant is very poisonous, and they must be peeled before eating.
Jicama is made up of 85-90% water, is high in carbohydrates and dietary fiber, and has only trace amounts of fat and protein. It's rich in vitamins A, C and B, calcium and phosphorus. One cup of cubed jicama contains only 45 calories. It has a mellow, sweet flavor and is usually eaten raw and paired with lemon or lime juice, chili powder, cilantro, ginger or red onion. It is also common in Asian dishes. It gets it's sweet flavor from a prebiotic called oligofructose inulin.
Jicama can be stored dry for 1-2 months at 53°- 60°F and will last for a few days in the refrigerator after being peeled. When choosing jicama, select roots that are roughly 3-4 lbs as larger roots can be woody.
During the Ultimate Reset, jicama turned up in almost all of the salad recipes as a diced vegetable, and also in one of my favorite recipes, the Jicama Avocado Salad from Day 20's lunch. However you decide to pronounce it, I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did!
Jicama Avocado Salad
1/2 tsp Himalayan salt
1 Tbsp agave nectar
juice of 1 lime
1 1/2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 avocado, ripe but firm, cut into chunks
1/2 medium jicama root, peeled and sliced into thin matchsticks (I cubed it instead)
2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
Mix all ingredients and let marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour. Serve over 3 cups of salad greens.
Everyone's heard of the Master Cleanse where you drink nothing but water with cayenne pepper and maple syrup, or the Cabbage Soup Diet or the juice fast or all the others on the market so it's not surprising that the #1 question I was getting asked while doing the Ultimate Reset was, "So what are you eating?" Well, here's the answer!
Just a quickie here to talk about the importance of planning ahead when it comes to sticking to your meal plan and fitness goals. It's Day 20 of the Ultimate Reset and I can't stress enough how important prepping my meals ahead of time has been. I'd say I made about 75% of my lunches the night before instead of making them in the morning before work. This would save me a ton of time in the morning, I'd just have to grab and go.
Here's my lunch on Day 17, Moroccan Carrot Salad over mixed greens. I made the carrot salad the night before and put it in one container, cut up the veggies for my salad and put them in another container and the next morning all I had to do was stop on the way to work to pick up a bag of salad.
This was also my only day on the Reset that I screwed up with the meal plan. The carrot salad was supposed to be eaten over mixed greens, but I put it over the microgreen salad. No biggy, but it means I ended up eating 1/3 cup of nuts/seeds that I shouldn't have. I figure though since I haven't been doing all of the optional snacks and I cut down the oil used for dinner this day that it will all work out in the end. I'm more upset only because I really wanted to do this 100%. Either way, I couldn't be happier with my results and how far I've come in just a short 20 days!
"If you fail to plan you plan to fail".
Day 19! First off I just want to say how big of a deal this is. You see, two February's ago Scott and I did a 21-day cleanse. It was similar to the Ultimate Reset in that it focused on clean eating, whole foods and no or limited gluten, dairy and meat. It also recommended the use of probiotics and digestive enzymes. Unlike the Ultimate Reset, it didn't come with any of the supplements (which ended up costing over one hundred dollars more) and it only had meal "suggestions" and no detailed meal plan, which let to poor portion control.
One of the key things it also lacked was the support. I'm not going to lie, there are days I didn't feel like doing the cleanse anymore. I felt great, I just didn't feel like prepping the meals and it really put a damper on my weekend plans. Knowing that I had an online support group there for me with people all over the country going through the same things I was really helped keep me on track. I also have been posting my photos and updates on my personal facebook page and my Henderson Fitness fan page. Knowing that others were watching what I was doing and commenting on my posts has made a big difference, too. So to all my online followers, "Thank you! You've helped keep me motivated and you didn't even know it!"
My results were another big difference. So far with the Ultimate Reset I have lost 6.4 lbs and 2.5% body fat after the first 2 weeks. My first cleanse? I lost maybe 2 or 3 lbs and only made it to Day 18 before Scott and I went to Pizza Plant for vegan pizza and beer. So ya, Day 19 (and all the support!) is a big deal!
I'm happy to say that this weekend went smoother than last. I surprised Scott with LL Cool J tickets Saturday night (his first rap concert!) and we went to the annual Clarence Labor Day fair Sunday night. Between all the smoke at the concert and the dust at the fair I have done nothing but sneeze these last 2 days. This is by far the worst I have felt on the Ultimate Reset and ironically it has nothing to do with the cleanse at all. We also had a few people come out for a group run on Sunday morning, including a first time runner! Since I can't workout while on the cleanse I followed behind everyone on roller blades.
I can't believe I only have 2 more days of the cleanse left! I'm excited to add Shakeology back into my diet. I could have had vegan Shakeology for some of the snacks during the Reset, but I tried to eat as few snacks as possible. I'm also looking forward to working out again. In fact, we just ordered our new program tonight and we're planning on starting it in about 3 weeks.... Body Beast!
There's also still time to join our new Challenge Group starting September 10th. You'll be added to a private facebook group with about 10 others to help keep you motivated (support rocks!). After 90 days the person with the best transformation will win $100! The only requirement is that you're using a Beachbody program. Shakeology is not required, but will help with your results. If you already have a fitness program, great! If not, you can purchase a Challenge Pack which comes with one month of Shakeology and will save you a bunch of money. Send us a message if you want in! If you're not ready for this Challenge, we have an ongoing group we can add you to at any time for the support.
You know how you always have that one body part you're never going to be happy with no matter what you do? Mine is my belly. I'm constantly poking, prodding and playing with it, just ask Scott. Well, two weeks into this crazy thing called the Ultimate Reset and it's vanishing! So far I have lost a total of 6.4 lbs and 2.5 % body fat! But what's even more amazing are the side by side pictures (which I'm not sharing until the very end). In fact, when I texted Scott the side by side's on Thursday after I took them his reply was, "Does this mean no more cuppies or brewski?" (btw, cuppies = cupcakes)
I'm loving my results so much that I almost wish this wasn't my last week. I would love to see just what I could accomplish and how I would feel after 4 weeks, and not just 3. At the same time I also feel like I have been doing this For. Ever. and I'm ready to get some sort of normalcy back to my weekends.
This weekend is going to be especially hard because it's Labor Day weekend. Every year we go to the Clarence Labor Day Fair. They have a huge beer tent and live bands and it's a lot of fun. This year I'll be there, but with my distilled water in hand. I also have something special planned for Scott for Saturday night, but I don't want to give away the secret. ;)
Since this is my final week, my supplements have changed again. I'm no longer taking the Detox supplement three times a day. Instead I have added in Revitalize, a probiotic, three times a day. The food has continued to be AMAZING while the prep time... and portion sizes... continue to diminish.
Five more days then my final round of pictures and a second set of blood work. Oh ya, and then I can get back to Les Mills Pump and training for the Rochester 1/2 Marathon again!
Former esthetician & LMT turned #GIRLBOSS, vegan food & fitness, travel, beauty, FUN!! Veg-curious friendly ☀️👙🌴✌🏻️