Lets talk Breakfast…

Everything Keto Bagels.JPGAs a child we are always told that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.  I grew up eating scrambled eggs, toast, french toast, pancakes, waffles and if we were really in a hurry a giant bowl of cereal.  As adults many of us just opt for the largest cup of coffee we can make and forego a traditional breakfast. When I started my keto journey I decided that I would also do a 16:8 intermittent fast each day. I did this because I was used to skipping breakfast so it wouldn’t be any different from a normal day for me. I also noticed that I was relying on my cup of coffee in the morning to keep me full until I had my first meal at 2 pm. So I loaded it with almond milk or heavy cream. For a while that kept me full until my meal. After a while I noticed that my weight was up and down the same 3 lbs or it just stayed the same. So I decided that I would try something different and eat 3 meals a day but continue to stay in my macro count. I also decided to give up coffee. (Insert shocked face here). YES I gave up my morning coffee. I’ll be honest…..that was NOT easy but after I got through the first few days I noticed how much better I felt and it really sunk in how much I was depending on coffee to get me through the day.

Since I didn’t have my morning caffeine jolt, it was tough getting out of bed in the morning to cook a full breakfast. I needed to find something that I could prep before hand and would be an easy grab and go breakfast. I started off with just eating hard-boiled eggs, half an avocado and maybe some bacon or sausage that I could just reheat. That got boring after a while so I took to my best friend Pinterest and came across this amazing everything keto bagel recipe! So I jumped in my car, drove to the store and got everything I needed to make these amazing round pieces of heaven. After I tried these bagels for the first time, I was immediately hooked and I now make these every Sunday for the week.

The recipe came from an amazing blogger and cookbook author Kyndra D. Holley or Peace, Love and Low Carb (https://peaceloveandlowcarb.com/). If you do not know her….you NEED to jump on your computer or phone right now and check it out! I purchased her Craveable Keto cookbook last week and I plan on trying every recipe in this book! So….here it is….the infamous Everything Keto Bagel Recipe!

Ingredients:

2 Cups blanched almond flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon italian seasoning (I omit this but that is just my preference)

3 large eggs

3 cups of shredded low moisture mozzarella cheese

5 tablespoons cream cheese

3 tablespoons Everything Bagel Seasoning (I get mine from Trader Joe’s)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a Slipmat.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the almond flour, baking powder, garlic powder, onion powder and the italian seasoning (if you chose to use it). Mix until well combined.
  3. Crack one of the eggs into a small bowl and fork whisk. This will be the egg wash for the top of the bagels.
  4. In a large microwave safe mixing bowl, combine the mozzarella cheese and cream cheese. Microwave for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Remove from the microwave and stir to combine. Return to the microwave for an additional minute. Mix until well combined.
  5. To the mixing bowl, add the remaining 2 eggs and the almond flour mixture. Mix until all ingredients are well incorporated. (I found that it is easier to mix with my hands once the cheese cools down a little). If the dough gets to stringy and unworkable, put it back into the microwave for 30 seconds to soften and continue mixing.
  6. Divide the dough into 6 equal portions. Roll each portion into a ball.
  7. Gently press your finger into the center of each dough ball to form a ring. Stretch the ring to make a small hole in the center and form it into a bagel shape.
  8. Brush the top of each bagel with the egg wash and top with the everthing bagel seasoning.
  9. Bake on the middle rack for 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown.

Here is the link to the recipe as well: https://peaceloveandlowcarb.com/low-carb-keto-everything-bagels/

I’m telling you that you will not be sorry if you try these!! If you try these…..please let me know how you like them!!!

xoxo,

Jen

Eat the pizza!!

PizzaSo…this weekend didn’t go so well for me and Keto. Specifically Sunday. For the past few weeks my husband and I haven’t really had the chance to really spend much time together. Sundays are normally our day to hang out together whether it be date night or just chilling in bed together all day. Well since we haven’t had a Sunday together in about 4 weeks and we’ve both been spending a lot of time away from home we decided that it would be a lazy Sunday where we didn’t leave bed. A day of nothing is exactly what I needed…..except for I had to prepare all of our meals with nothing in the house. We normally do our grocery shopping on Sunday’s. So I had a VERY tough decision….do I go to the store or do I just hang with my husband all day? It didn’t take me very long to make the decision to stay at home with hubby. Luckily I’m doing the intermittent fasting thing so my first meal wasn’t until 12pm anyway and hubby likes to sleep in until about 11 or 11:30 on the days he doesn’t work. When lunch time rolled around I went in search of something that I could make that was Keto friendly. Luckily I still had a dozen of eggs and some bacon. So for lunch we had scrambled eggs with coconut oil, salt and pepper and bacon.

We were both satisfied for a few hours and then the munchies started to take over. I settled for some almonds and a sugar free jello cup….but an hour later I was hungry again. I had nothing to make for dinner because everything was frozen. Hubby suggested pizza….so I said lets order from Domino’s because they have salads….then we started to order and one thing lead to another.  Hubby ordered a Philly cheese steak pizza and the brownie cookie for dessert. I ordered a salad and some wings….completely forgetting that their wings are breaded. Strike 1 for Jen! When the food arrived, the smell of melted cheese, green bell peppers and steak filled the entire room as if it was a sinking ship filling with water. I fought my urge to have a slice and settled for my salad and my wings (which I was already beating myself up over).

Hubby and I decided to watch Son-In-Law with Pauly shore and about 30 minutes in Hubby starts snoring…..the devil on my shoulder seemed to be getting louder and louder. “One piece wont kill you” it kept saying over and over again until I finally caved…….I didn’t eat one but two slices of pizza and then I couldn’t stop. I had two pieces of the brownie cookie too!! I felt so defeated and wanted to sit there and feel terrible about myself but something told me to reach out to a friend who is also doing the Keto diet. She has been my rock through this whole thing and has kept me sane. I told her all about my “cheat day” and what she said to me has given me a whole new outlook on my “accidents”. She said to me: “Its life….get back on track tomorrow. It can’t be all consuming, life has to happen and that includes pizza.” The more and more I thought about it….shes totally right! Being so strict on myself and not enjoying life was just setting me up to fail. I need to enjoy my life and if I want a slice of pizza I should have it because everything is “OK” in moderation. Moral of this story is….DO not beat yourself up for having a slice of pizza, a slice of cake or a scoop of ice cream. We are all human, we are going to make mistakes…..what we do to recover from them is what really counts. Until next time!

xoxo,

Jen

I Joined the Gym!

Joined the gymSo I’m sure a lot of your are in the same boat as me when I say that I’ve always cared too much about what people thought about me. So much so that it has held me back and kept me from reaching my goals. I always avoided situations where I had to physical in front of other people or be in a swim suit in front of people just because I didn’t want them to judge me for being plump. With that being said I never in a million years thought that I would ever join a gym…working out in front of tiny little women in their cute little workout clothes….but I did it! I took the plunge and joined a gym. I’ve officially been a member of Edgewater Fitness for about a month now and I AM IN LOVE! I never thought that I would be so comfortable working out in front of other people……I feel more motivated there than I do at home. I guess it’s the fact that you never want to appear as if you are a slacker so you kick your own butt just to keep up with the lady beside you on the treadmill or lift 20 lb. weights instead of your normal 8 lb. weights because the girl next to you who is half your size is currently curling 30 lbs.

When I decided to join the gym, I knew that I needed to be committed to this because a) I was paying good money to be there and b) I have goals that I want to reach and I had to get serious if I want to reach them.  So far I hit the gym 4 days a week for at least an hour and a half during the week and on Saturdays I’m usually there for at least 2 hours….sometimes 3 if I don’t have much to do that day. Leaving the gym hot, sweaty and sore is by far the best feeling in the world. I always walk out of the gym knowing that I’m one step closer to the ultimate goal. I have no idea why it took me so long to do it.

If you are on the fence in joining a gym because you aren’t comfortable working out in front of people or just worried people are going to judge you….don’t listen to yourself! Take the plunge and join….its the best motivation I’ve ever had! I’ve already lost 10 lbs.  just by sticking to my schedule and trying to kick my own butt in the gym. I push and push myself harder and harder each and every time my sneakers hit that floor.  I can’t wait to see what happens after the end of month number 2!

Face to Face - 9.10 to 11.1

xoxo,

Jen

 

Losing Hope

TEARS-sad-songs-30412485-1280-960So its been a really long time since my last post. Not a lot has changed since my last post except I’ve really lost my motivation and my hope. I tried waking up every day with a positive attitude and tried to force myself to get motivated…to get moving….to hit the ground running. It seemed like every day I lost more and more of myself and it began to feel like all of that hard work that I was putting in wasn’t doing any good. I felt deprived, exhausted, lonely and just unworthy of anything. I finally gave up working out……continued to eat healthy for a while and then I eventually gave that up to and fell back into my old ways. Binge eating, takeout, McDonalds….whatever I wanted I let myself have. Then I looked at myself in the mirror with disgust because there I was a failure yet again. Why is it so hard for me to stick to something? Why is it so hard for me to lose this last 20 lbs. that I so desperately need to? I need to shed this last 20 lbs. so that I can move forward with my fertility treatments….what’s more motivating then that? I want nothing more than to be a mother…..so why is it so hard for me? Why can I not bring myself to stick to something and dig deep and do whatever I need to do to reach that goal? Life gets so busy and I’m a creature of habit…..I do what’s easy and convenient. I expected so much more from myself this time around and I still let myself, my husband and my future child(ren) down because I’m not able to stay focused enough to lose weight. As I sit here and write this all I can do is blame myself….beat myself up….everyone keeps telling me “So what you had a rough few months….get back on the horse and move forward.”. Easier said then done for someone like me….someone who has been heavy her entire life, someone who has hated herself for being plump, someone who wished that she was just like everyone else, someone who looks at the women around her and just wonders why I couldn’t be like one of them….why do I have live with burden of PCOS? What did I do to deserve this? Why me?

Fertility Update

baby-dust-needed-hereIts been a few weeks since my last post. Life has finally slowed down long enough for me to breath a little easier. Just an update on what’s been happening in my life…we were finally able to get hubby’s swimmers checked. We also  had the chance to schedule our follow up appointment to review our test results and get our game plan from our wonderful doctor at Shady Grove. Here is how the appointment went:

I walked a little slower into the office that morning….anxiety had officially overtaken my body. Hands trembling and sweating all at the same time. Head spinning from all the thoughts running a mile a minute. What if both of us have issues….would conceiving a baby even be an option for us anymore? It took me about 15 minutes to walk into the office which normally takes be about 5. I finally made it to the second floor and just about 5 feet from the office door. Reaching for the knob felt like I was reaching for my ultimate doom. While signing in I looked at the other women waiting to be seen wondering if they had the same cards dealt to them that I did. I sat in the small leather couch right across from the reception desk hoping the wait wouldn’t be forever for my own sanity….I needed to know what were my options…..would it be possible for us to conceive our own baby? Finally about 10 minutes go by and the doctor comes out and walks me back to his office. I took a seat and he starts off with “the small talk”. In side I’m screaming at the top of my lungs…..JUST SHUT UP AND TELL ME MY FATE ALREADY!!!! After we caught up on what’s been happening in my life, he says “ok lets take a look at what we are dealing with”. FINALLY! He first takes a look at all of my test results because lets be real…I had to endure to most testing so its only fair I go first right! So my results were great! My tubes are open and filled nicely, no fibroids or pulps in my uterus, blood results were great…my only issue is my PCOS. That brings us to hubby. His blood work came back great….all levels looked great and his swimmer count was amazing! Low normal for count is from 5 to 10 million and hubby came in at 64 million so we are in great shape there! (Yes he gloated a little and that made him walk a little taller that day). The shape of his little guys were off a little bit but doctor proscribed a prenatal vitamin for him that will take care of that. The best feeling in the world was knowing that he was ok and the only obstacle we have to deal with is my PCOS. After the test results were revealed then came the, “How’s the weight loss coming?” questions. I was honest and told him that I had struggled a bit with this when I first saw him. I had lost 30 lbs. when I first saw him and then I ended up gaining about 10 of those back…the holidays, stress and depression got the best of me. Since then I have lost those 10 lbs. and 23 lbs. on top of that!

So what’s the next step. Well I have been given strict instructions to lose another 30 lbs to decrease my chances of getting gestational diabetes. Despite my weight the doctor told me that I am very healthy and I do carry my weight very well. He also had a great outlook on my additional weight loss…..when I do get pregnant and I am full term I will be approximately the same weight I am now. So I have set a new goal for myself to lose these last 30 lbs by January in hopes to have a fall baby in 2017! I guess I have my new years resolution!

XOXO,

Jen

Polar vs. FitBit

polarWho doesn’t love a good fitness gadget! I’ve owned my Polar Ft7 for a while now and I fell in love the moment I first used it. I am a very competitive person by nature so I was in constant competition with myself. Watching my calories burnt increase was the best feeling in the world. It really helped me push myself harder every time I strapped it on but it really left me wanting more. I only put it on when I worked out and it didn’t count my steps and I really had to track my progress manually. The heart rate monitor strap was a little uncomfortable as well. Don’t get me wrong….I still think the Polar fitness trackers are an amazing product and work really well but there had to be a better option that fit my every day needs.

Recently my company started a FitBit challenge on September 1st. Each participant was supplied with the FitBit zip which we all received in August so I got to use it for a little before the challenge started. All the ladies in my office are participating so I have the best support group anyone could have. After using the FtiBit Zip I was instantly hooked so I decided to splurge and get the FitBit Blaze watch. BEST DECISION I EVER MADE! The FitBit app is multifunctional and really helps me track everything in my daily life from my water intake to my sleep patterns and it even monitors my heart rate like my Polar does.

fitbit-blaze

Working in an office I knew my activity level was pretty sedentary but I never fully understood how sedentary I really was until I got the FitBit Watching my co-workers hit 4,000 to 6,000 steps before lunch and I was at 1,000…..I knew I had to step up my game (pun intended). I work in a mall that is just shy of 2 miles long if you walk an entire loop. I have the best work place for those trying to get some major steps in…..so why wasn’t I taking advantage of it? I set a schedule for myself because lets face it…working in an office its hard to walk away from your office if you don’t have it on your calendar! So I walk at least 3 times a day….once in the morning, once after lunch and once right before I leave for the day. So for all my non-fitbit users out there your daily goal is 10,000 steps which approximately 5 miles and if I walk my mall 3 times a day like I have scheduled I hit that 10k mark every single time. Now you may ask….should I really be walking 10,000 steps every day? Here is the link to the FitBit Blog that explains why you should:

Should You Really Take 10,000 Steps a Day?

Another great function of the FitBit app are the challenges you can do with your friends. All the ladies of my office love doing the Work Week Hustle. Like myself, my coworkers are also competitive so it’s a constant battle in my office to beat each other….who doesn’t love to have bragging rights in the office! The first two challenges I came in dead last because I underestimated the ladies I work with…so here I am pushing myself even harder to keep up with these amazing ladies. We just ended this weeks challenge and I finished 2nd with a total of 59,351 steps for the week! Whoop Whoop! I can’t wait for next week!

So if you are on the fence about purchasing the FitBit…..do it! It has changed my life and really pushed me to keep moving throughout the day. So much so that I have lost 17 pound in the last 2 months! Yes…..17 pounds!!!!!! Thanks for reading!

xoxo,

Jen

 

What’s your favorite in home workout equipment?

InMotion Compact EllipticalSo I know its been a while but like I always say…life just gets in the way! So….recently I have been exploring other pieces of workout equipment that is suitable for the home that doesn’t take up much space. Of course weeks of research went into looking for that perfect piece of equipment that was both compact, easy to put together and didn’t cost me a small fortune. I came across one of those pesky ads in my Facebook feed for a compact elliptical made by InMotion. My first thought was….how can an elliptical be compact? Then I clicked on it and watched the video and instantly I HAD TO HAVE ONE!! Now for those of you who don’t know me….I’m cheap! I refuse to pay full price if I don’t have to and that is how Amazon and eBay have become my best friends. I do feel kind of bad for the delivery drivers who delivery my packages every other day! Any who….I found the same item on Amazon and it was the same price as their website but I did find the older model for under $100! SCORE! The only major difference was the new version had resistance bands attached for an upper body workout which I figured…I could use some weights or my own resistance band. Now like most wives (insert laughter here) I discussed it with hubby before I made the purchase. My birthday was just a few days away…Happy Birthday to me!

3 DAYS LATER…..

My package arrived!!! I couldn’t wait and made hubby put it together which was SUPER simple…..I could have done it! After the 15 minutes it took for him to put it together I was ready to use my compact elliptical. Since the machine is compact the stride is much smaller than your average elliptical but for me and my short legs its perfect! After 15 minutes I started to feel my legs BURNING!!!! It did however take about 30 minutes before I actually started to break a sweat but 2 miles later I was sweating and my legs started to feel like stretched out rubber bands. Now not only can you use this piece of equipment by standing on it like a normal elliptical but you can also use it like a bike while sitting at your desk! What is better than sitting there pedaling your heart out while finishing those spreadsheets or power point?

I would recommend this to anyone who has bad knees and wants to get a little cardio in because it is versatile and you can use it standing or sitting. Is it the best cardio workout…..probably not but it will get your blood pumping and will add some variety to your everyday exercise routine. I love mine because I can use it and watch TV with hubby without him complaining that I’m hogging the TV with my workout DVD’s again. So whats your favorite piece of home workout equipment?

XoXo,

Jen

The Results are in…

Yesterday No Longer MattersWell if you read my “About Me” page you know that I set a personal weight loss goal of 30 lbs. by my 30th birthday. Well after all the celebrating I did last week, I fell just short of my goal. Those pesky last 5 lbs just didn’t want to come off! I’m not going to sugar coat it….I got pissed at myself. I kept thinking….why did I HAVE to eat that slice of cake? Why did it take me so long to get back on track? After feeling sorry for myself for about a day or two it suddenly hit me….why am I doing this to myself? I came this far and that is something to be excited about. I looked in the mirror and I don’t see a huge change physcially….but I am my own worst critic. When taking my measurements I noticed that for some odd reason I’m losing most of the weight in other places other than my mid-section. I went down a whole cup size in my bra!!! Hubby was not thrilled about that when I told him….he had that “I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU” look come across his face. That is a little frustrating but….its more motivation to push myself to the next level.

I will admit losing this much weight is much harder than I anticipated….I knew it was going to be a lot of work physically but trying to make sure I am fueling my body with the best foods has proven to be a challenge for me and my schedule. Life has definitely been getting in the way lately and I keep falling off the wagon. With a schedule as fully packed as mine it’s so easy to get into the mindset of just getting something quick. It’s the convenience of just running in somewhere and being able to feed me and hubby quick. Getting back on track has definitely been my weakest point. I have started and stopped the 21 Day Fix 4 times now and each time I get more and moe determined to do it then….BOOM….another life event that has resulted in me indulging more than I should. Since I was little, my family has celebrated good and bad things with food….your celebrating your anniversary? LETS EAT!! It’s your birthday? LETS EAT!! It’s summer! LETS EAT!! You lost your job? LETS EAT!! I guess that’s how I grew into the emotional eater I am today. Everyday is a struggle but the battle is what makes you stronger. I am stronger than I was 6 months ago when I decided to start this journey. Could I have done better in the last few months and hit my goal? Sure but I will not dwell on the could have’s…but I will celebrate how far I have come and focus on where I’m going from here. Yesterday is in the past …tomorrow is my focus!

xoxo,

Jen

P.S. Just an update on my infertility journey. Blood work came back great (other than being Vitamin D deficient….I NEED MORE SUN!!) and I have official started Metformin as of last week. So far so good with it. I need to schedule what they call a “no-menses” or a no menstrual cycle work up with Shady Grove and then schedule an appointment with my primary care for a chicken pox vaccine since apparently I’m not immune (UGH…more needles). Anyways…..wish us luck on the next steps to starting our family!

I’ve been MIA for too long!

MIA

So I want to apologize for being MIA for the past few weeks…..well months really. I have been super busy and I am not sure where to begin.

The first week of May the hubby and I had our first vacation away in about 6 years. We went on an 8 day cruise to the Bahamas aboard the Carnival Pride out of Baltimore. Let me just tell you it was so relaxing and way over due. We met some amazing people on board and really allowed ourselves to let go and let’s be honest….when you are on board a ship that has endless amounts options for food….you really let go and we all know that when you are on vacation, diets do not exist!! I of course let my self indulge a little too much and ended up gaining about 5 lbs. I felt very defeated….I knew I was going to gain weight but I didn’t know it would be a whole 5 lbs. That started it all….a few weeks went by and I realized that I was back to eating the same way I use too. Lots of sugar, fat and the “convenient” processed foods. I knew I had to get back on track but I totally lacked the motivation to “reignite” that torch. Before I knew it June was here! My best friend in the entire world was getting married on June 13th so I knew I had to get back on track before the wedding…I didn’t want to feel miserable in my bridesmaid dress. I immediately cleaned out my refrigerator and cabinets of the temptations that lurked in every corner and refilled it with healthier options. I was determined to put the past in the past and move forward. I took my measurements and my before pictures because I would rather tracking my inches lost and how my clothes are fitting than the stupid scale. So I hit the workouts hard for the two weeks prior to the wedding and I felt pretty pleased with myself. When I had my bridesmaid dress altered in April it was fitting a bit snug and when I put it on before the rehearsal, it  fit a lot better and I could breathe easy. That was the confidence boost I needed!

So the moral of the store is if you get knocked down…..you just have to get right back up, dust yourself off and start fresh. Everyone has their bad days and your are absolutely allowed to have them…espically during a vacation! Keep pushing everyone……if I can do this then so can you!

You can do it

Its only a number!

for weight loss do not use a scaleHow many of you weigh yourself on a regular basis? I also was guilty of this….I use to let that number run my life. There were days where I would see the scale go down several pounds and I would ride that high all week and work super hard….then the dreaded weigh in day came and the scale would go up. I would then get super bummed, back slide and ruin all the hard work that I had already done. A very wise woman told me, “Never believe that number on the scale…all that matters is how you feel inside”. I took that statement to heart and learned that the scale is my ultimate enemy and I had to defeat my enemy at all costs!

I have made myself a promise, I would never let the number on the scale run my life. Instead, I would take measurements weekly and use that to track my progress. Check out these 5 “Non-Scale” ways to measure your weight loss:

5-non-scale-weight-loss-measurements

If I said I never weighed myself I would be lying. I weigh myself every 30 to 60 days just to see how far I have come. Not taking my weight on a regular basis is among the hardest things I have every faced in my journey. Walking into the bathroom and seeing the scale on the floor…..its like its mocking me. Like it knows that I had that extra scoop of mashed potato’s with dinner or that I had ice cream after dinner instead of an apple! It’s enough to drive anyone crazy! I have even asked my husband to hide the scale so that I can’t find it or place it somewhere high where I can’t reach it (the benefits of having a very tall husband)!!

If I can give you any advice to help you on your own journey…..don’t let the scale mock you or get the best of you. Your weight is only a number. If you feel good with where you are at that moment….that number doesn’t matter. You are working hard to reach your goals and with strong will and determination you will get there. The number on the scale can’t tell you what a great person that you really are, how much your family and friends love you or that you have the power to choose happiness. Believe in yourself, trust yourself and you will exceed your goals!

XOXO everyone!