Sunday, July 17, 2011

Half way there

Reached the halfway point of the 98 day Summer Transformation Challenge! They are running a 49 day photo contest this time around, $1,000 purse so photos have been taken, before and after collage was created and posted! I probably would not have taken photos at this point had they not encouraged it by offering up a challenge but was glad to have taken some progress pics. Definitely saw more definition in my abs and back despite watching all the weekly progress numbers move so slow. Certainly are some impressive photos in the contest thread so I don't plan on being $1,000 richer next week but did find value in taking the photos.
With less then 7 weeks left its a good time for some honest self assessment regarding progress and compliance thus far and plan for the remainder of the Challenge. Workout compliance not a problem, really never is/was as I enjoy the training, providing my escape and stress relief. Changed up the program this week to include more 'sculpting' as I enjoy 'training like a bodybuilder.' planning on alternating the new program with TNB workouts each week to continue with the heavier lifting. Will continue to monitor progress....
Adherence to nutrition plan is always a bigger challenge for me. Difference this time is that I have a plan, more proactive with meal planning rather than reactive with meal reporting.  I am finding this easier in that I know what my next meal is, I find myself looking forward to the meal rather than battling cravings and succumbing to snacking as I try to figure out what to eat when meal time arrives. By planning ahead I also know in advance that all my macronutrient ratios will be correct to allow me to reach my goals. Do I stray from the plan? I am honestly I have had a few leaks in the plan. Interestingly though, perspective changes significantly after cleaning up the nutrition cheats?  Granola, chopped dates, craisins.....
Reassessing my goals for the Challenge reaffirms I have to plug the leaks and turn up the burn as I still need to drop 3% BF in order to reach my goals. I could easily reach my scale weight goals in a matter of 2 weeks if I was not concerned about losing hard earned LBM. My priority is health and creating a lean and strong skinny fat for me! Most importantly I am sculpting a healthy lifestyle I can live with!

Take the time to take an honest look at your own progress. Are you getting closer to your goals? Remember to view the obstacles as challenges, not excuses! Make each day a little better than the last and your next photo will be of a better you!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Green and clean snack chips

In an effort to find healthy substitutes for those not so healthy cravings, you know those horrible salty, crunchy cravings...Try kale chips, they have a surprising similarity in flavor and crunch to a light chip of the unhealthier variety yet with a "green" aftertaste..not as bad as it sounds. Give them a can choose your own blend of seasonings, I have enjoyed herb and garlic with a touch of sea salt but feel free to experiment with your own combinations . Kale is inexpensive and the chips are simple to make and hopefully will quiet the cravings and keep you on track with you healthy eating.
Kale provide a good source of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins A, K and C and a cup of kale is only 34 calories.

Tear kale into small pieces, wash and spin in your salad spinner. Spread pieces in single layer on a baking sheet. Mist with a little olive oil and sprinkle on your favorite seasonings. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.  Hope you enjoy experimenting with some different seasonings and please share your favorites!