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Add Flax Seed to Green Smoothies @fitfluential

Green smoothies are some of the best breakfast foods for you- you get greens, carbs and your protein in your morning green smoothie.  Of course, any time of day is great for a green smoothie, but especially when you add flax seed.

Add Flax Seed to green smoothies for an extra boost of nutrition

I’ve been using ground flax seed in my green smoothies for several months now.  The nutritional value of flax seed is manifold, regardless of whether you use whole or ground flax seed.  I’ve found that the ground form of flax seed is easier to digest, and it blends into the green smoothies more easily.  Whether whole or ground, flax seed is healthy for you in terms of your digestive health.  It can help motivate trapped particles in the intestines and move things along, if you know what I mean.  It can also decrease gas and bloating, help decrease blood pressure, and promote better circulation.

Not into green smoothies?  You can still  incorporate whole or ground flax seed into your diet by sprinkling it into yogurt, vegetables, or  other dishes.  We love the taste and benefits of flax seed.  Just remember to drink plenty of water when using flax seed, so that you maximize the benefit.

How do you use flax seeds in your diet?

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Posts May Contain Affiliate Links. See Disclosure. All opinions my own.

I Took the Advocare 24 Day Challenge

Recently, my husband I made the decision to start getting healthy.  When I say we made the decision to start getting healthy, let me just establish something: my husband does virtually nothing. He goes to work, he comes home, and he does yard work once a week.  I, on the other hand, am a runner.  I completed a 15k and my first half marathon last fall, and my goal for 2014 is to run at least one mile outside every day in the calendar year.  So far, I have run 141 days straight, and I lost count of my miles.  Although my lifestyle has become very active, we have continued to eat as we always have: lots of pasta, dessert a few times a week, and way fewer fruits and veggies than what’s recommended.  As I learn more about general health, I’m realizing that the things we are eating, although generally lower in fat, could be contributing to our tendency to being overweight.

That being said, in an effort to become more healthy, we decided to make the switch to clean eating in February.  That change was largely spurred by my decision to take part in an Advocare 24 Day Challenge. What is that, you ask?  The 24 Day Challenge is a combination of a 10 day cleanse and 14 day burn phases designed to increase overall health (your immune system resides in your gut, so cleansing increases gut function, thereby increasing overall wellness), and get your metabolism revving to help your body burn fat and absorb nutrients the way that it was designed to in order to fuel itself and have energy.

advocare products

Here is what I used during my challenge:

  • Spark- awesome energy drink!
  • Omegaplex- Omega 3 supplement that supports overall health and immunity
  • The Herbal Cleanse- herbal cleanse caplets, probiotic, and fiber drink
  • MNS e- metabolic nutrition system that provides loads of energy and revs up your metabolism so your body is using its fuel more efficiently
  • Meal Replacement Shakes- enough said.  Sometimes I just get too busy to cook

What I really wanted to accomplish during this challenge was to increase my overall health, improve some GI issues I’ve had forever, and hopefully bust my stinking post-baby weight loss plateau.

Would you believe I got it?  I did.  My first clue that something had changed as a result of the challenge was the fact that I wasn’t suffering from daily lower abdominal upset.  Also, my mood improved drastically, I felt like I had enough energy to get through my days without a nap, and when I started to get a respiratory infection for the 4th time in 3 months, it went away within 2 days without meds, versus a week+ with antibiotics.  Sweet!

Oh, you want to know about weight loss?   Well, honestly, I have no idea how much I lost.  I decided when I was pregnant with Ms. A that I wasn’t going to be ruled by the scale any more, so I go strictly by my measurements.  During the 24 day challenge I lost- get ready for this- 5 inches off my hips, 2.5 inches off my waist, 2.5 off my chest, and a half inch off each of my biceps.  Craziness!  I lost one whole pants size!

journey to health

I’ve decided to stay on some of Advocare’s products simply because I feel so good on them, and in fact, my husband- the one who is resistant to physical activity- decided that he wanted to do a full challenge with me and see if he can jump start his own health and wellness!  I’m so excited to see his results, and naively think I might be able to lose more than he can!  Don’t rain on my parade…I know he has man superpowers that will help him lose more weight, but a girl can dream, right?!

So, are you ready to jump start your health and fitness??  I’d love to answer any questions you might have about Advocare!  Shoot me a message in the comments section, and check out the Advocare Products!  I hope to hear from you soon, and I promise to update you with my husband’s (and my second) 24 Day Challenge results as they come in!

***Disclosure- I am an Independent Advocare Distributor.  I became one after I did the first 24 Day Challenge because I love the product and really believe in it.  I use the products daily.***

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Posts May Contain Affiliate Links. See Disclosure. All opinions my own.

Join the Gym – Take 2 @GoldsGym #weighinwednesday

I told you last week about the fiasco that was my enrollment in the local gym.  Now for join the gym – take 2.  Hubs and I both did some research on the other gyms in our area, and Gold’s Gym really was the best option for us.  So, on Saturday, we went and enrolled.  I know what you’re going to say… but Gold’s Gym is expensive…

join gym - take 2

It isn’t cheap, but it really isn’t that much more for my husband and I to both join Gold’s than it was going to be for me to go to the other gym on my own.  The other gym annual fee, including enrollment, was $229.20.  It would have been more, but I paid the entire fee in full, so there you are.  I was going to have to pay an additional $9 per week for childcare.  That would get me one hour of childcare for all three kids for three days each week.  Add that to the annual fee, and it was going to cost me $697.20 for the year.  Now, let’s look at the Gold’s Gym fees.  We were able to get a discount on Hubs membership, because of his employer.  His bi-weekly fee is $13.99.  They added me as a second family member for an additional $13.99 bi-weekly.  We each paid a $30 enrollment fee, which brings our annual total to $787.48.  Our membership includes childcare, for up to two hours per child per day, at no additional fee.  So, for less than $91 for the year, hubs was able to join the gym with me, and we can both get in shape.  Oh, yah, and Gold’s Gym has a pool.  Score.

I went on Monday and 5K on the treadmill, in 52:40.  It wasn’t my best run time, but it sure beat sitting on the couch and it beat running in the cold.  After the 5K, I did some abdominal and back exercises.

This morning, I dropped the kidlets in the Kids Club, jumped on the Precor Total Body Crossramp for 15 minutes and then went for I went this morning for my *free* personal fitness assessment that is included with enrollment.  Of course, I realize the personal fitness assessment is provided free of charge in hopes that patrons will become interested in securing the services of a personal trainer.  I went anyway.

body comp analyzer 012914

They have a nifty Tanita Body Composition Analyzer (the model I used runs about $2500!).  It does a printout with your information.  I told her to go ahead and put my age as 38, although my birthday isn’t for a few more days.  I figure I’m closer to 38 than I am to 37.  LOL.   Anyway, we proceeded to the assessment where I did 20 squats, a 43 second plank, a brief upper body workout, and a brief lower body workout.  By brief I mean 12 reps x 3 on each machine.  After I chatted with her for a few minutes, I went and changed Little Miss’ diaper in the Kids Club (they don’t do diapers or bottles for you), then went back out and did some hip abduction/adduction exercises and repeated the abdominal/back exercises.  I had 15 minutes left of my two hours, so I jumped on the treadmill and finished it out there.

image

As far as measurements go, they are creeping along.  I lost 2.5 inches this week between my upper arms, bust, waist, hips, and thighs.  I think that brings me to just over 9 inches since the first of the year.  It seems uncanny, to me, that 3.1 pounds can equate to over 9 inches, but hey, I won’t argue.  Much of what I have done to this point has just been from watching what I eat.  While I am logging on LoseIt, I haven’t been recording everything.  I’ve gone on the random walk with my kids, but this week is the first week that I’ve actually been able to work out.

I’m looking forward to seeing how the numbers look after a few weeks of discipline!

This last week, Hubs and I were watching lifechurch.tv and Pastor Craig Groeschel had this to say about discipline…

 

I cannot tell you how many times that statement has run through my head this week, whether reaching for a snack or grabbing my water bottle instead of my coffee cup, or using my Kindle to read (whodathunkit) rather than to play a game.

I have 65 days until the Go! St Louis 5K and 86 days until The Color Run 5K.  With a little bit of discipline, I’m sure I will do fine in both, and I am excited!

How was your week?

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Posts May Contain Affiliate Links. See Disclosure. All opinions my own.

Best Laid Plans #weighinwednesday

Do you know the old idiom of the “best laid plans of mice and men oft go astray”? Last week I posted that I was on my way out the door to go to the gym to work out with my best friend… I arrive at the gym, with my three kidlets in tow, and sit on the couch to wait for the gym child care lady to arrive.  After she arrived, she proceeded to enter the child care area to clean it.  When she came out, she looked at Little Miss, looked at me, and said, “She can’t come in here.”  Say what?

say what

She proceeded to tell me that children under the age of one are not permitted in the childcare area, and that they have to be “one and walking” to come in.  That restriction was NOT mentioned to me when I purchased my membership and paid for the entire year in advance, and I told her that.  She responded that whoever signed me up should have known better, and she would not allow Little Miss in the childcare area.  Of course, the chap responsible for signing me up was standing at the counter looking shamefaced.  I had specifically asked about child care during the sign up and he told me that child care was $1/child/hour and available M-W-F from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.  It would cost me $36/month—in addition to my membership fee—to put my kidlets in the childcare.  It was worth it, to me, though because I would get to work out with my best friend.  I informed him that I would be cancelling my membership and wanted a refund.

After some discussion as to whether or not I was eligible for a refund – since it was past the “one week cancellation period” – they agreed to refund my money because a) it was their duty to inform me of the restriction and they didn’t, and b) there had been a major snowstorm which prevented us from coming to the gym before the one week cancellation date had elapsed.  no gym for you

***note- I added the graphics and the “no gym for you” text, as well as blacked out their banking information.***

I’m not going to lie, the most exercise I got this week was taking my kids for a walk around the neighborhood.  I briefly *thought* about putting in The 30 Day Shred DVD, but the mere thought of it made my body hurt.  That being said, I still somehow managed to lose a pound, shave 0.2 off my BMI, and drop my BFI to 38.

scale and omron 012214

I also lost 3/4 inch from my bust, 1/4 inch from my waist, an inch from my hips, and a half inch from each thigh.  An inch from my hips?  Woot woot!

measurement tracker 012214

All of that with some serious emo inspired carb binging in the last week.  Oh, and while I somehow managed to get my 3 glasses of water a day in, I didn’t force myself to do more.

Hubs and I have spent quite a bit of time in the last week trying to find a different gym for me to go to.  We’re leaning toward Gold’s Gym, because child care is included.  For just a bit more annually than what the other place would have cost me with childcare, Hubs and I can both join.  Just have to wait for my refund check to clear, so we can go do it.

This next week, I am hoping to get some meal plans laid out for the next month or so, with lower calorie dinners.  I do well throughout the day, then sabotage the day with my dinner, so I am thinking of changing my eMeals plan to the new 500 calorie plan or to a Paleo or Clean eating plan.  Which would you choose?

How was your week?

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32 GB iPad mini Giveaway (ends 9/30) via @thatbaldchick
Posts May Contain Affiliate Links. See Disclosure. All opinions my own.

Weigh In Wednesday 01/15/14

So, we’re two weeks into the new year, and the scale is inching downward. I weighed in at 193.6, which means I lost just under a pound in the last week, and 1.3 pounds total since the beginning of the year.

Weigh In Wednesday 01/15/14

While the numbers on the scale don’t seem to be inclined to move, my measurements were a little more encouraging…

2014 Measurement Tracker

I lost an inch from my waist, and half an inch on each thigh, for two inches.  Throw in a quarter inch from my bust and a quarter inch from my left calf for a total of two and a half inches since last week.  Since my measurements didn’t change for the first week, it’s a total of 2.5 inches lost to date.

So, how random is it that I lost a quarter inch from one calf?  It is my non-dominant leg, so I guess that explains it?

So, my diet intake in the last week was not that great.  We had a ladies night out, and I ate spanacopita. and pizza.  Yep.  Which would explain why the scale didn’t move much.  Ah well.

My water intake is on target, I’m choking down at least three glasses of water each day.

As for workouts, in the last week I did one day of the Shred DVD and one day on the elliptical.  Monday I missed the gym because I had inadvertently scheduled a doctors appointment for one of the kidlets.  I’ve rearranged the rest of our appointments, so the MWF gym time with my bestie should be good from here on out.  Speaking of, I’ve got to head out the door now!

How was your week?

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