Being healthy and fit for life is definitely a challenge sometimes, especially when you need to satisfy that sweet tooth. So I decided to go on a search for something that was good and definitely chocolaty. I tried a couple recipes and let me just tell you, they were they epic fails. So then I decided to post in one of the keto facebook groups to ask for help. I got several responses for so many options and recipes that appeared to be chocolaty and keto friendly. However, many of these recipes contained some of the same ingredients I had tried which made me very reluctant to try again. Oh but wat the Keto dessert gods sent me a private message which included the link to the recipe below. Funny thing is it had all the same ingredients I had already used, with the exception of two I hadn’t tried, SWERVE sweetener and Philadelphia Cream Cheese. In addition to those added ingredients, I added a little almond milk. I didn't use all the almond milk but I added enough to help it mix well and be a little creamier.
Below is the recipe I used. Click the link to get her recipe and many others I'm sure I will try at some point.
Keto Brownies by Lauren Rabadi
Lauren's recipe is for 8 servings. I divided my brownies up to be 16 servings. For me, this was better because they were cut at just the right size for me to pop in my mouth and keep it moving. The best thing about that is I could have one at lunch and at dinner without going over my carb allowance for the day.
After I pulled these babies out the oven I was very happy with the outcome. I had been on a search for something sweet and failed miserably a couple times before, but these were great. Now my version didn't look exactly like her version but they were very tasty and definitely satisfied that sweet tooth. This recipe will definitely be on my list of desserts for the holidays. If you are looking for something to satisfy that sweet tooth, this, in my opinion is by far the best recipe for that. Remember, Keto doesn't have to be boring.
Hello Stitching Fit Chics!!
Let’s talk about Apple Cider Vinegar!!!! I’ve been using Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) in my morning routine for quite some time now. My mother introduced me to this miracle drink a few years ago. She is a firm believer in the use of ACV. She has never really been sick with anything other than a sinus infection. Aside from her belief that she will live a long and healthy life, ACV has been a part of her daily routine for over 30 years. I can remember as a little girl going to the health food store with her to buy it. Those were the good old days.
A few months ago I stopped making my morning elixir. Not sure why I stopped but I did. Let me tell you, I could really tell the difference. During that time my energy levels were wayyyy down. I didn’t feel like doing much of anything not even exercising, and if you know me, exercising is like a drug to me, I need to exercise daily and it's the only time of the day that belongs to me. Well, I’ve incorporated it back into my morning routine and after only a few days of continuous use, I’m feeling a lot better, I know right, very interesting. Now I don’t drink it straight but I do add 2-3 capfuls to my hot green tea with pomegranate, lemon juice and half of a cinnamon stick. I use to add honey but now that I’m a Keto girl, honey is a no no. If you haven’t tried it you should, it’s a great morning drink and a great way to start your day. I think you will enjoy the benefits.
Now I don’t know the science behind it all, I’ve just been following in my mom’s footsteps and trying to take care of my body so I can live a long and healthy life. But I’m sure there is information out there on the World Wide Web regarding the benefits of using ACV. So I decided to do a little research of my own and found a very interesting article https://www.webmd.com/diet/apple-cider-vinegar-and-your-health. I know WEBMD is not the answer for all things medicine but it is a good source of information.
Please remember if you are on any type of medications, please, please, please do some research on the effects of using ACV with your medicine. I am not an expert in this area, so remember to consult your physician before you make any changes to your healthy and fit 4 life routine.
Check out this link for some amazing uses of Apple Cider Vinegar http://www.herbs-info.com/blog/amazing-benefits-of-apple-cider-vinegar/
Diet or Way of Eating
Since I first began MY journey to health and fitness, I’ve tried several diets along the way that seemed to work for the moment but was not something I could maintain because they required me to give up too much all at once. The concepts of those plans were not good for someone like me who loves food. When I’m focused on my health, fitness and what I’m eating, I typically don’t like to refer to it as dieting simply because diets are made to be broken. This way if I eat something that is not on the diet I don’t feel like I’ve failed. After doing some research, I decided, Weight Watchers was the best option for me Today I’ve adapted the ketogenic way of life and I absolutely LOVE it.
Before I go any further, let me say this. I am in no way supporting, endorsing or advertising for Weight Watchers or any products that supports the Keto way of life. I am only sharing my personal experiences with the hopes that it will in some way inspire you to do something to help improve your health.
Now, let’s get back to the subject at hand. When I finally got serious about my health, I started with Weight Watchers. I lost a total of 45lbs. It was great because I was able to eat the foods I like and even some I loved and still lose weight and THAT was AWESOME!! Weight Watchers taught me a lot and in turn changed my relationship with food. I learned how to eat to live and not live to eat, big difference! If you are struggling with giving up all your favorite foods, this WEIGHT WATCHERS plan may be a great starter program for you.
While I no longer use weight watchers as my way of eating, I’m proud to say I have adopted the ketogenic way of life. What is Ketogenics you may ask? Well, it’s a low carbohydrate high fat diet (LCHF), a lot like the Atkins and the South Beach diet. Since I’ve been eating this way I have to say I am learning a lot about my body. I’m discovering that so many of the foods I like actually are not good for my body or for losing weight. So for me, this diet works. It’s helping me go to the next level in my health and fitness journey. There are so many versions of this diet available on the internet so I advise you to really research it for all your options. What works for one may not work for another. So, when you are ready to start/restart your journey to good health, keep in mind that the internet has so much information out there that it could be information overload. But I still suggest doing your own research, consulting with your physician and/or a dietician to help you choose the right way of eating that will work for you. Being healthy is a way of life. BUT also REMEMBER You CAN’T change YEARS of bad habits OVERNIGHT!!!! This is a marathon, not a sprint. Slow and steady wins the race.
In the meantime, start your journey off slowly. Meal prepping for the week is a great way to get started. You can plan out your meals and prep your food at the beginning of the week to save on time. For me this has been great and it has save me quite a few dollars and it has definitely been a time saver.
What do you wear when you workout?
Are you comfortable when you work out? Does your waistband roll? Does your backside show when you bend over? Or, are you all about the style? Maybe it does not matter to you. Well, I do not know about you but I prefer comfort first and they must be fashionable too. Over the last year or so, I have been on the hunt for a good pair of workout pants and I think I have finally found a pair or two I absolutely love.
I know what you must be thinking; she is a seamstress, why doesn’t she just make her own workout clothes? Well, I would love to do that but I’ve been having the hardest time finding the best fabric, especially since we only have a Joann’s and shopping online is difficult. Especially since, I like to touch and feel the fabric. So, if you have made your own or you know of a place to get good quality spandex, please let me know.
In the meantime, I think I have found a pair of pants that fits my body and works well with my workout regime. The only problem is I was only able to find one pair in my size. These Nike Run Fast Live Fearless pants are my favorite pair of work out pants. The only thing missing is a side pocket for my phone. These pants feel great on the body. The waistband is perfect and it has a great draw string which helps to keep them up over the midsection (tummy and buttocks) cause no one wants to see all that back there when I bend over, except the Mister…LOL!!
When I could not find any more of the Nike pants my search continued. So, I made a visit to my second favorite store, Victoria Secrets. I must say this Victoria Secret Sports Line is awesome. Now these are a little on the expensive side for my budget, but with coupons, specials and VIP Angel status, the purchase was definitely worth it. These pants feel good on the body too, they offer great support and has three very important features, a wide waistband, a hidden drawstring and the oh so important side pockets. When you pair these pants with a front closure sports bra, you have a hit the jackpot; comfort, support and style. Until I can find the right fabric to make my own, these will work out just fine. Click on the pic for more options from Victoria Secrets. Disclaimer: I am not getting paid to advertise for them, I just really like the pants.
Water, Water & more Water!!!!
Are you drinking water? If not, please start right away! Water is essential for you to be healthy and fit 4 life. If you are drinking water, how much?
There is so much information out on the World Wide Web about how much water you should drink that it makes it really hard to know which expert/non expert to follow where this subject is concerned. Some say you should drink 8 glasses per day, some say you should drink half your body weight and a lot of Facebook and Instagram post have been circulating for you to drink at least a gallon per day. Do you need that much water per day? I don’t know, so my suggestion is that you drink enough water to help you with these four things. Remember everybody is different. What is necessary for one person may not be necessary for you.
1. Drink enough water to flush out the toxins in your body. The color and the smell of your urine is a great indicator of how much water you need or how much more water your body needs. Remember clear and odorless is great.
2. Drink enough water to help suppress your appetite. Just because your stomach is rumbling does not mean you need to eat, especially if you are not going to eat the right things. Keep some almonds at your desk. Eat a handful and drink some water and that rumbling will go away.
3. Drink enough water to help your digestion. Water helps to fend off bloating.
4. Drink enough water to feel energized. You don’t need an energy drink to perk you up. You will be amazed at how energized you are when your body is properly hydrated.
As stated before, I’m not an expert on this subject matter so with anything you do regarding your health, consult your physician. For my healthy and fit 4 life journey, I have avoided all of the above, just by staying hydrated. I usually drink 64oz of water during work hours. I drink more water while I’m working out and then for dinner I enjoy either a glass of green tea or more water, just depends on what I’m eating.
If drinking water is a challenge for you, try adding some lemons to your water or your favorite citrus fruit; limes, oranges, grapefruit. Try adding some frozen strawberries; you’ll think you’re having a special treat.
Remember, this is not a one size fits all. There is a lot of information out there so be sure you are doing what is needed for your body.
Let's talk workouts!!!!
So, let's talk workouts. As I have said before, I'm not a certified professional so anything I suggest is from my own personal experiences. After trying many different diets and workout programs, I finally realized that I had to do what works best for me if I wanted to be healthy and fit for life. One size does not fit all.
If you are just starting a workout plan, I would like to suggest you consult with your doctor first. Get a physical checkup to have a starting point. Everyone is different and are on different levels in their fitness journey. What works for me, may not be what works for you and vice versa. So, please be careful and know your limitations. I know we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us but with everything you do, the law of progression is important. Take your time. This is a lifestyle change not an overnight fix. You cannot fix years of bad habits with one 30-day challenge. The worst thing would be to start a program super charged, injure yourself, then stop because you are discouraged from the injury.
So, after you have consulted with your physician and a nutritionist, you can begin to develop a plan that will work for you for the long haul. Remember, this is a lifestyle change, a marathon, not a sprint!!
I have a couple of suggestions. Not sure if you've heard of them, but when I needed a push to get back in the swing of things, I went to a boot camp. There are a ton of classes to choose from but I really enjoyed 21 Days of Hell ran by Five Star Fitness. It only cost $21 for 21 days. Can't beat that. Now, this is not going to be an easy class, but in my opinion, this is a great way to get started and actually see results. If you decide to give it a try, tell Tiffany and Germaine I sent you. If $21 is not in the budget right now then I suggest I AM BHAM Fitness. This is free, but the stadium is no joke. I may be wrong but I think it is run by the city of Birmingham Parks and Recreation. Check them both out on Facebook.
I'm a member of a local gym and I really enjoy the classes but when I need a kick in the buttocks, I sign up for a boot camp. There are plenty of options to choose from when deciding to start your fitness regime, so choose a program that works for you, just remember slow and steady wins the race. Rome wasn't built in a day or even a 30-day challenge...LOL!!!