Tuesday, August 19, 2014

6 Areas of Focus When making the Life-Style Change

When you are making the HUGE decision to take a leap of faith.... and make a life-style change. There is ONLY one place to start. INSIDE you. Yes there are outside changes that will take place overtime, however the biggest change that will mold over time is inside out. I have 6 areas I want to share with you today!! 


My first bit of advice is... INNER MOTIVATION

Find some quite time, your bible & a journal. READ from the best manual written and take notes. Getting some motivation at the start of your journey. We need to feel good about ourselves no matter our size or health condition... This type of focus and attitude will allow for us to have success during our journey. This also goes for the type of people who you are surrounding yourself with. If you are spending times with those who tear you down, pull you away from your goals, or have bad habits they might need to be re-evaluated as friends, role models, or associates. 


What are triggers for you? TRIGGERS

Do you use food to cope with disappointment, rejection, boredom, or even personal success? Do you use exercise to burn off frustration? Whatever your personal triggers are do your homework and journal about it so you are aware. Then have a plan... Find a snack that is healthy & make sure you have it on hand. Don't buy the high calorie snacks. Make your self a list of activities to do for when you feel bored. It's about being prepared!!


Change up your daily routine... MIX IT UP

1. Add a few glasses of water to your day. You will be shocked with how your skin, nails, & hair will respond to just more water!! The BEST time of the day to add the glasses of water is about 30 mins before meal time. WHY? This will help you not overeat. 

2. If you are not a gluten free person... try cutting out the white breads, white rice, white processed sugars!! This is a simple thing to cute. I am NOT saying go gluten free or cut ALL carbs... or sugars... This shouldn't be hard at all!! 

3. When you go to a store... park way out front and walk in. YES WALK!! At Work or Church don't park close. This will add about 30 extra mins a day of walking. GREAT way to ad a few steps without even thinking about it. 

4. Set a timer on your phone (we all have a smart phone) So we can set a permanent daily timer. For example 8:30 AM and 1:30PM and stop and do 25 crunches and 10 pushups. At the end of the week you would have done: 350 crunches 140 pushups AWESOME. 


Please plan for snacks... FUEL IS MOST IMPORTANT

You can prep all your snacks for the week on Sunday if you take 1 hour on Sunday evening. If you wait too long between a meal it's common to overeat at your next meal. Find a lunch box or bag that you don't mind traveling with so you can take snacks with you. Having your own snacks on hand is SO important. Don't rely on drive-thru's or stores to grab a snack. You will find high calorie pre packaged snacks & not know what your options are. So BE PREPARED. 


Proper reward system... TREAT vs REWARD

Find that one treat you can have that won't blow your focus and hard work. For example... I found a gluten free, dairy free, soy free chocolate bar that I can have. I buy them and keep them in my freezer. When I feel like I need a little treat I will break one in half and enjoy a little chocolate with a glass of wine. I have learned how to control my portion size. 

But DO NOT use that treat as your REWARD system. When you are working hard... your reward should not be with food. I encourage you to set up a system based on motivation... 

What get's you going? A vacation? An outfit? Get a Jar... For each week of success (doesn't have to be based on weight or inches lost) It can be measured on eating well, staying positive, reading bible...etc. There is NO reason why a reward system has to based solely on the scale. If you are happy and feel like you are moving in the direction you want... GREAT. Add $ or marbles to show your success. Visualizations is a great way to see yourself doing good!! 

Last but not least... GIVE IT TIME

Be patient & invest in the process. Be committed to the process and know that this is a lifestyle change and not a overnight change. Allow your body time to make the changes & allow your body some grace. We all have ups and downs. The process is more than just what we put in our bodies. It's about learning about our bodies, learning about our hearts, & most importantly learning about our creator.

Remember... you WILL have days that you feel like this. 


Stay focused.

Friday, August 1, 2014

NEW Finds....

I have found a few NEW yummy snacks!!

DARK Chocolate Bar...

YAY... I LOVE that I found this bar.  I have been using this brand's chocolate chips (enjoy life) for the brownies I make!!  They are AMAZING & taste like any other chocolate.  The only place I have found the bar's is Albertsons grocery store.  

My other NEW awesome snack is....

I have Anna to thank for introducing these to me!!  During our last girls trip to Los Olivos she purchased a bag of these wonderful coconut chips!!  Let's just say the entire bag was GONE in less than 15 mins (and I think I ate them all)!!  We gave them the nickname coconut toenails! 
They have a few different flavors to pick from.  

Finding new snacks is always fun.  Snacks that are easy to pack and take on the go make my life easy!!  Fruit seems to be the go to.... but can get boring!!  Adding excitement & flavor are a MUST!!!  

I LOVE opening the pantry and having a selection of snacks to chose from! 

Today is short & sweet... I love hearing from you.  
If you have a favorite snack please share with me!! 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

10 Quick Healthy Snack Ideas

Are you STUCK in the RUT???  
Need ideas for snacks??? 

Sometimes you have to think outside the box when it comes to snacks.  Don't be scared to mix items.  All of these suggestions I have for you are items that I have found from other smart people.  YOU DON'T HAVE TO RE-INVENT TO WHEEL!!  Some of the best ideas I get are kids snack ideas with a twist.  Remember to read labels & all ingredients when purchasing food.  Items Listed below that have chocolate chips are used with ENJOY LIFE brand which are Gluten Free, Dairy Free, & Soy Free.  Many snacks I give options of Almond Butter or Peanut Butter (I can not have peanut's... so I use almond butter). 



Cored apple slices with almond butter, oats, nuts and chocolate chips (enjoy life brand)

Banana, almond butter (or peanut butter), strawberry sandwiches.

Gluten Free Pretzels dipped in almond butter or peanut butter!  Easy and yummy!! 

 Rice cake, peanut butter or almond butter, sliced bananas, topped with cinnamon.

 Graham crackers, Nutella, & sliced banana sandwiches.

Peanut butter or Almond butter, chocolate chips (enjoy life brand), sliced strawberries, &  sliced almonds. You can change this up by adding blueberries, dried cranberries, yogurt covered pretzels, etc.  Have fun with it! Mix & enjoy! 

 Cottage cheese, nuts, berries, cane sugar/coconut sugar (if needed).  

Need a great idea for "on the go"... Add some hummus in a small plastic container & stick carrots in!! OR Almond Butter & Celery.  SIMPE & YUMMY!!! 

GoGo Squeeze's (they have multiple blends of fruits & veggies) are some of my FAVORITE quick & easy snacks to put in my purse.  They can be cold or room temp.  They are inexpensive & great for kids & adults.  

 Treat Snack... Trader Joe's Cinnamon Almonds.  
However, DO NOT open the bag and eat directly out of it.  Most grocery stores sell ziplocks that have measurements marked on them... Measure yourself out the proper serving size and have a SNACK!!!   

fruit, veggies, hard boiled eggs, avocados, nuts, Larabars,  freeze dried fruit (with no added ANYTHING),  coconut milk yogurt, & smoothie. 

Drinking plenty of water is the smartest thing you can do for your body through out the day.  This helps your metabolisms & digestion.  Drinking water before meal time also helps with not over eating.  There are many pinterest & facebook articles going around about detox & metabolism booster water drinks.  Adding things like cucumber, lemon, strawberry, mint, lime, mango, etc to your water & drinking a certain amount throughout the day.  Is this true...? I'm not sure.  I think this can be beneficial for anyone who thinks is works and helps them increase their water intake to a healthy amount.  I know that the cucumber & lemons, mint, strawberry, mangos, etc all have benefits to our bodies... so adding them to the water are smart.  So its a WIN - WIN!!! 



Drinking water is a natural way to clear out our bodies, but adding in a few more ingredients can turn it into a powerful detox drink that can flush away all unwanted toxins. I tried a refreshing combination of strawberries, lemon and mint. Lemon juice cleanses, alkalizes, and boosts the immune system, while mint leaves a cool flavor and helps to settle the stomach. Strawberries will add in flavor, antioxidants and skin enhancing nutrients. All you need is a handful of sliced up strawberries, a few lemon wedges, and a couple sprigs of mint. Add all the ingredients to a pitcher of water and set aside in the fridge while the flavors build up.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NIV)
"Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 
you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies."

As I read the word this passage from the bible I am reminded that the Lord has blessed me with many things.  Things like: wonderful husband, 2 amazing children, fun extended  family, & a church family.  As I enjoy these blessings I have responsibility to God & to honor the body he has blessed me with.  Not in a prideful, selfish or lustful manner.  In a way that nourishes & energizes physically & spiritually.  

I hope that some of these snack ideas & water ideas were helpful... Have a wonderful day!! 


Wednesday, June 25, 2014


Are you weak in your Core?

I have learned these last few months I have a VERY weak core.  So... I have been doing some research on programs & exercises that help build a strong core.  
Let me make this VERY CLEAR.... Building a strong core DOES NOT mean ONLY doing sit-ups. You must put in equal time building strength in 3 main areas:  

And along with building these 3 areas you MUST be stretching!  I will be the first to admit I am horrible at stretching.  It is the #1 area that i left out of a workout program.  Unfortunately this is a huge factor to why people get hurt.  I suffer from and IT Band issue... I promise you that this is my own fault.  WHY?  I never took the time to stretch, warm, up, or cool down my body properly.  You don't need a huge amount of time for warm-up/cool down and stretching.  But I promise you your body will thank you in the years to come!! 

Ok back to the Abs/Back/Hamstring topic:  When you only do abs day after day, and ignore the back/hamstrings you are causing major issues for your core.  The Core is not just the front side... See the back muscles are included in the CORE area of the body.  Some may be asking why I included hamstrings in my bolded trio above.  Here is why... Back muscles and hamstrings go hand in hand. While having strong hamstrings does have its advantages, hamstrings have a tendency to become short and tight when not maintained. This can result in pain in the lower back. It can also restrict your stride length, making walking and running harder/painful. Over time this will make the core less effective and weaker.  Incorporate hamstring stretches at the end of your workouts to balance the strength and flexibility of these muscles.  

The beauty of ABS is that we have so many options out there for us to pick from.  You can take classes at the local gym, buy videos & do workouts in the privacy of your home.  Youtube has thousands of awesome FREE short or long programs.  
However, the MOST important thing you must do is start small and build.  DO NOT OVER DO IT.  So many push themselves the first week and then they can't even laugh for 3 days.  

I spent days... many many hours (don't tell my hubby).  I was up until 2 or 3:00 in the morning watching different videos of abs/back/ham videos of ladies.  ALL FOR YOU!! 
But I found some great resources that I honestly feel are AWESOME!!! 

This gal Clare is amazing... I found her and was amazed with her blog & video.  Not only was her stuff GOOD.... but she had a GREAT focus on Jesus.  I was impressed her smile and joy during it all.  I fond myself excited about working out.  

Below is the link to her Abs & Lower back.  What you will see is videos with & without explanation.  Printouts and workout plans. It truly is amazing.  If you are a tech savy person you can explore her website and see many other body areas she has posted about.  

I have a friend from college who is a personal trainer.  She is amazing!  She has worked REALLY hard & I am SO PROUD of her.  She also has created many videos for ladies... I have linked her gallery of ALL her workout videos.  She has LOADS of the them!! I want to highlight one set that she calls 'Teeny Tiny Waist Challenge'.  Day #1-10  I encourage you all to try them!! 

Just remember we ALL had a day one... I am not an expert at anything.  I LOVE researching new things.  I love getting out in the water to swim and train for a race.  I LOVE the wind in my face during a long bike ride.  I dread putting on my running shoes.  The pounding beneath my feet is NOT the feeling I look forward to... but I make myself do it.  I know that I need to miles to train.  I know I need to build the strength to make it across the next finish line.    


Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Real Cocktails.... Not Skinny Cocktails

REAL COCKTAILS  Not those Skinny Cocktails

YAY.... I found a few more possibilities of cocktails I can drink.  It's hard to find tasty cocktails that I can actually drink and enjoy.  I can have dark rum... but I really don't want to just drink straight rum.  I mean... some of my readers may enjoy that!!  But, this girl doesn't care for the taste.  

Prior to my hashimoto's diagnosis I was introduced to Moscow Mull's.  There are a few variations to this drink, however I found a way to make one that I can drink!!!  

Meg's Moscow Mull
2 ounces of (grape distilled) Vodka
6 ounces ginger beer
1 lime, jucied
1 tablespoon agave nectar
fresh mint

How to make Cocktail Meg's way: 
add Agave Nectar in a glass with fresh mint.... smash mint leaves with the agave to blend the flavors. Add the 2 ounces of Vodka to the mix.  Place a few ice cubes in the Copper Mug and place a strainer over the mug.  Pour the vodka, agave & mint mix over the strainer (so the small mint pieces so fall in the copper mug).  Add the ginger beer & 1 lime to the mug.  Stir & garnish with lime wedge & mint sprig if you wish!! 

(if using this copper mug you will need to double it... the mug is pretty big)

Best when you drink in a Copper Mug, but not necessary!! 

I found Bombora Vodka at Total Wine.  The bottle was about $16.99-$19.99, but I was able to get it on sale for 14$. If you are a berry person you can make this drink the same way and add a few fresh raspberries to the glass when smashing mint.  This adds a great berry flavor to the drink.  

Organic Sangria

I was so excited when I found this company that makes and bottles a sangria I can drink.  

This is what you see when you go to their website.  And guess what??  It tastes SO YUMMY!!!  The website is: http://eppasangria.com/

A few weekends ago we had a BBQ and I got 4 bottles thinking I would put 2 out for the BBQ and keep 2 for me.  LOL... we drank all 4 bottles that weekend with friends.  IT WAS THAT GOOD!!!  

Premium Varietals:
Eppa SupraFruta Sangria is crafted in Mendocino with premium varietal wines that create the basis for an unequaled sangria.
Real SuperFruit Juices:
The fruit flavors in Eppa SupraFruta Sangria come from real, organic fruit juices, drawn from antioxidant-rich superfruits, including:  Pomegranate, Blueberry, Mediterranean Blood Orange, Acai.
Antioxidant Rich:
Premium wine varietals and real, organic fruit juices make Eppa SupraFruta Sangria antioxidant-rich.  Boasting nearly twice the antioxidants as a glass of red wine.


Meg's Awesome Sangria
1 bottle Eppa Sangria
1 Cup Dark Rum
1 apple sliced
1 orange sliced
1 lemon slice
(add sparking ginger ale or water if needed for taste, but not necessary)

Freeze lots of red grapes
let set for a few hours.  When you serve use the frozen grapes as the ice!! 



Friday, June 6, 2014

From the Heart...

Kinda Sad...

I wasn't sure if I should actually write this blog.  I have struggled with how to approach this topic.  I am extremely happy with the  new me... I feel amazing and have SO much energy.  However, not everyone responds kind or positive when they haven't seen me in sometime, and yes it may be a shock to see me 70 lbs smaller.  In all honesty majority of the people ARE supportive, happy, encouraging, and have nice things to say.  A little bit of me wants to clear the air & a little bit of me wants to address this because it makes me sad that some people actually respond this way.  I have been 100% transparent in my journey I have been open about the process, struggles & the transformation.  The hardest part is when I hear about when I am the topic of peoples conversations and they assume "HOW" I have lost the weight!  They speculate... by making comments like " she's not eating enough", or "maybe she's taking something?" 

What medications am I currently taking?  I take a anticonvulsant medication because I was diagnosed 7 years ago with a seizure disorder.  The main reason I take this medication is for my migraines.  This medication is called Topamax.  I have been taking this medication for 7 years.  Some say it can help with weight loss.  Guess what folks... I was talking this medication prior to ALL my weight loss and NOPE!!  It did't help then!  I was even on a larger does prior.  The doctor's even said before, "you must be one of those who it doesn't help with weight loss."  LOL 

I also take a thyroid medication called Nature-Throid.  Since my thyroid was basically killed by my autoimmune disease.  This medication helps my body to function normally.  No more sluggish days, and my metabolism has been jump started back to working normally.  

I also take a few supplements daily.   After having my blood work done I was able to see how low I am in some area.  I take daily: Vit B12, Vit D3, and iodine with kelp.  

These are the Rx's & supplements I take daily.  I just found pictures of the supplements on the left and downloaded.  There are a variety of brands available for purchase over the counter.  Ask your doctor what daily amount you should be taking before starting.  Topmax is a prescribed pill that I get from my doctor.  Nature-Throid I also get prescribed from my doctor.  

 THAT'S ALL!!! Really... I don't owe anyone an explanation or details about my personal medical side of this journey.  However,  if I am going to be transparent with my journey... I felt I wanted to CLEAR the air.  

SO... The NEXT thing on my mind!  
Someone said to me, "You are TO SKINNY."  
This actually hurt my feelings.  I am going to give you the numbers for you to see for yourself.  I started my journey at 209 lbs. And today I woke up and got on the scale and weighted in at 138 lbs. 

BMI Calculator: 
209 lbs = 32.7 which was considered Obesity.
138 lbs = 21.6  and I am considered Normal.

BMI categories are as follows:
Underweight = 0-18.5
Normal weight = 18.5–24.9
Overweight = 25–29.9
Obesity = 30 or greater 

This may be a lot of information that you may not care about... but let me say this.  I have worked very hard to change from the INSIDE out.  Not just for me.   This lifestyle change was done 'yes' for my health, however, I did this for my family.  I wanted to set an example for my children.  I want them to learn 'HOW' to take care of their bodies  & health.  

We as a family have had a few health hurdles over the past 4-5 years.  We have learned about lifelong fitness & health.  I have a Master's Degree in Physical Education & Health Science.  I am happy to finally be putting this education to it's full potential. 

I have felt that this journey has been more than a health transformation.  I truly feel that God has been teaching me and calling me in the area of health & fitness on a teaching platform.  Sharing with people about our bodies.  Growing up we have always read and been taught, feed our soul... be strong in the Lord.   The Bible tells us to think on things that are "noble, pure, lovely, admirable, and praiseworthy" (Phil. 4:8).  Watch our attitudes, minds, spirits... whatever goes in comes out!  

What happened to 'FEED THE BODY' that houses the Holy Spirit? I want to teach people how to properly feed our bodies that the Lord has blessed us with.  If we don't give our bodies the proper food to function, we shouldn't be shocked when they malfunction. 

1 Corinthians 6:12 says: 
“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything. 
God expects us to manage our bodies. Our bodies are a gift from God. He loans it to us and it’s our responsibility to manage it well. 

What are you doing with what He’s given you?  

My diagnosis was a SHOCK to me... I went cold turkey on all the 'CRAP' food and made a lifestyle change for ME!!!  This change was the BEST thing that happened to me.  I can honestly say that I am not perfect... but I have not cheated on my nutrition.  I don't call this a diet (because it's not a diet).  It's not hard to say NO to the food's I can't have!!  I have made the choice to say NO to that lifestyle.  

On October 16th 2013 I said YES to my NEW lifestyle.  

I have a strong support crew!!  I love my husband and kids!  They make this ALL worth it!  Ryan has been 100% on board from day One.  He cooks for me... & knows HOW to cook for me.  I love that he learned from day one how to cook the special way I need.  My kids even know I can't eat some things & are very protective when we go out to eat!  

Thank you to all my friends & family who have been on this journey with me.  I love you all.  Thanks for always reading my lovely blogs that are special (& horrible writing skills)!!! 
But that's why you all love me!!  It wouldn't be a Megan blog without a misspelled word or a funky sentence!! :-)

I have some really fun blog topics coming soon.... 

Until Next Time...

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Bacon Wrapped Butternut Squash

OMG.... These are SO FREAKING GOOD!!!  

I found these on Pinterest a few months ago and can't stop making them!!  They are bite size & melt in your mouth yummyness (if that is even a word)!!! 

GREAT snack, appetizer, side dish, or make because you are craving them! 


2 1/2 lbs butternut squash
15 slices of bacon
Olive oil
Chili powder
Garlic powder

PepperPreheat the oven to 350 F.  

Peel and trim the butternut squash.  Cut the squash into 1″ cubes 
(discard the seeds and pulp–makes about 30 cubes).  
I buy the cubed pre cut bag at Trader Joes!  Saves me time & the is only $1.99 (I think).

Place the squash in a bowl and drizzle with oil and sprinkle with chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper–to taste.  Toss to coat.  

Cut the bacon in half, width wise.  Wrap half a bacon slice around one squash cube and place, seal side down on a foil lined baking sheet.  Repeat for the reminder of the squash cubes.  

Bake for 20 minutes.  Flip the bites over (careful not to unwrap the bacon) and bake for another 20 minutes or until the squash is tender and the bacon is cooked through.  If you want to bacon crispier, broil it for the last 3-5 minutes of baking (keep an eye on it).

This is the website that I found this amazing recipe at on pinterest:

If you find a melt in your mouth recipe and want to share it with me... please send it on over so I can try it out and share it on my blog!! trimom101@gmail.com
Happy Eating...

Psalm 106:1 "Praise the Lord. Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good: his love endures forever."