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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

One of those days!

If your anything like me, sometimes you just don't feel like doing anything. You want to sit at home on the couch, watch Food Network and take time just to relax. And no matter how long you spend on the computer looking at different exercises, healthy foods, and other healthy things, your not helping yourself.

Today has been one of those days. I was so exhausted when I woke up this morning, I almost fell asleep in the shower! Did manage to grab a quick breakfast to eat on the way to class. (Go me!) But, I got a headache in class and it just would not go away! By the time I got home it was so bad I didn't want to move. So honestly, I didn't. My fiance went and grabbed us lunch, and not long after I was sound asleep on the couch! I'm happy to say that after my nap my head is better, and here I am typing away.

Now I'm going to be honest, I have days when I don't wanna do anything and I feel just fine. I just simply don't want to do anything. And I no we all have those days. When we have those days, sometimes all we need is the motivation to do something. And sometimes, you can spend the day getting motivated and it will last you a while. And that is the best kind of motivation, the kind that stays with you.

Have you ever hear of TED? If not I strongly suggest you check it out! I first heard about it in one of my classes, as there are some great motivational and helpful teaching videos. But I wanted to explore, and I found wonderful fitness and health videos as well! Here are a couple of my favorite.

Jamie Oliver -- Teach Every Child About Food -- GREAT Video!

A.J Jacobs -- How Healthy Living Nearly Killed Me

And these are just two videos! There are so many more out there, even just on TED there are hundreds more. Find your own motivation, find what motivates you, it WILL be different for every single one of you. Find what works! 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Zucchini Carrot Muffins

Even as I'm writing this post, I'm sitting here enjoying one of this delicious muffins. I can not describe how good these are! They are super moist, just sweet enough, great for desert or breakfast, and you don't taste the vegetables! And even if you have a picky child, or fiance like me, the aren't going to know there are veggies in it unless you tell them. Really, have them try it first then share that it's good for them.

I actually found these muffins on another site, and I just knew I needed to add my own twist to them. And I even managed to make them even healthier and pack more veggies into it. To start simply mix all the dry ingredients together. I don't sift them or anything like that. Simply dump them in a bowl and mix away. Feel free to lessen the amount of sugar, or use a sugar substitute.

Now, you may notice there aren't any nut or oat chunks in my dry mix. I actually take the time for one more little step. I place my oats and nuts into a mini chopper, or food processor, and lightly chop them up. I personally don't like the texture of the whole oats and nuts in my muffin. You can also use just about any nut you have on hand. I've used walnuts, almonds, and pecans. All are very good. I would stay away from peanuts though, as they have a much stronger flavor.

Now mix the wet ingredients. Here you'll notice a very pale, eggy color. This is because I used applesauce in this batter, not apple butter. My favorite thing to do is to add both applesauce and apple butter. They each have their own unique flavor and really help to sweeten the muffins. Next grate your veggies. Use a hand grater or a food processor. My tip to you if using a food processor is to grate using your grater, but then to chop it up a bit more with your blade, just for 3 seconds or so. I've noticed the grated pieces can be a little on the larger side.

Yes, all those veggies go in the muffins! Can you believe that? Your family is sure to get their veggies for the day. Mix in the veggies and the raisins to your wet mixture. You'll end up with a goopy mixture that looks like this:

Your almost done! Add the dry ingredients into the wet veggie mix. I just use good ol' fashion elbow grease, but a mixer would work fine as well. I normally add the dry ingredients about half at a time. This way I know everything is incorporated very well. 

Once your dry mixture is incorporated, spoon your batter into greased muffin tins. Now the first time I made these I tried to use paper muffin cups. Boy do the muffins stick to the cups! I really recommend just spraying the tin and adding the batter. (Which is what I've done ever since,and it works perfectly) I get about 24 muffins every time I make these, and fill the cups about 2/3 full.

Bake the muffins for about 20 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Test with a toothpick, when they are done a toothpick should come out clean. Cool on a wire rack, or enjoy warm. These are great plain or with a touch of spray butter! Now, here comes the recipe. You have made it this far--so don't run away when you see the ingredient list. Chances are you have most, if not all, of them in your pantry!

Zucchini Carrot Muffins
adapted from EatingWell

1/2 Cup Oats
1/4 Cup Walnuts, chopped
1 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Tbsp Baking Powder
1 1/2 Tsp Cinnamon
1 Tsp Salt
2 Large Eggs
3 Large Egg Whites
1/2 Cup Apple Sauce or Butter
1/4 Cup Canola Oil
1 Cup Grated Zucchini
1 Cup Grated Carrot
2/3 Cup Raisins

Preheat your over to 350 degrees. Spray your muffin tin with non stick spray. Combine all dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Be sure to really incorporate all the ingredients. In a large bow, combine the eggs, applesauce or apple butter, . Grate your zucchini and carrots, if you have not already. Then mix the zucchini, carrots and raisins into the wet mixture. 

Combine half of the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients. Fully incorporate the two together, then mix in the remaining dry ingredients. Spoon into greased baking tin, about 2/3 full. Bake for approx. 20 minutes or until toothpick can be inserted and come out clean. Remove from tin and cool on a wire rack. 

Freezer Meal-- After baking flash freeze on a baking sheet. Transfer to freezer bags. To Eat: Take out to thaw, or heat for 30 - 40 seconds in the microwave. 

Calories-- 120    Fat-- 3g  Carbs-- 21g   Sugar-- 12g    Protein-- 3g 
* Nutritional Info will vary. Depends on brands and ingredients used.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

What's For Lunch? Healthy Options

I know its been a while since I've posted so I'd like to give you all an update! I'm still chugging along with the eating healthier goals I have. I still haven't quite done as good as I should be. I'm back to college and have super busy days becoming a teacher. So I will admit its been very hard to stay healthy. I've been so busy, its just so much easier to just grab something quick and go.

I've noticed my biggest issue is healthy lunches. This week, I've done absolutely terrible with my lunches. I've had single serving frozen pizzas, shrimp poppers, and not so healthy sandwiches. Now I will say yesterday for lunch I had Subway, and they can be a wonderful resource for healthy lunches. Just really watch your condiments! I think it's about time to go for this thing fully. So I've compiled some super recipes, both quick and healthy. No more excuses for fast food or unhealthy lunches! Wanna know something really cool? All these wonderful recipes are under 500 calories!

Caprese Salad Pita Pockets

Greek Pasta Salad

Carrot & houmous roll-ups

*Disclosure- These recipes are compiled from all over the web. They are not my own recipe and I do not wish to take credit for them. Each caption will link you to the original site and recipe.

I hope these recipes give you a few ideas and get your brain flowing with a few healthy alternatives to lunch! Not your style? Pinterest has an "endless" supply of great healthy meals! Leftovers from dinner are always great the next day for lunch as well.