Are You Committed?

Commitments…we have a lot of them. We have so many things in our day that take up our time & energy, but are we really committed to what is important to us?

I love my job as a teacher. Last year I had a really tough year. The kids were tough, I wasn’t in a good head space, and I felt that I wasn’t truly committed. When I started eating healthier and working out, some of my issues started to go away. I felt happier, more motivated, and generally in better place. I felt more committed to my everyday. Of course there were still tough spots with my job, but I, as a person, was in a better spot. I improved at my commitment because I focused on helping me.

I started this journey to be a better, happier me in February 2017. I have lost over 30 pounds, gained muscle, and become a better eater. Of course food still tempts me non-stop, but slowly I am learning to enjoy my food and not just shovel it into my mouth. But, now 10 months later I am realizing something. I had to ask myself today…

Am I committed? 

Unfortunately, I think my answer was not really. Yes, I am eating healthy-ish, and I am working out everyday. It’s the “ish” part that gets me. I don’t have super human genes that allow me to eat whatever I want….that is what got me 30 pounds heavier. Every time I think it’s just one, or just one meal won’t hurt…if you add that up to quite a few times in the week, it will start to get you out of the healthy habit.

Am I saying that you can’t have a cheat meal or enjoy desserts? No way! It is just the mindset of actually enjoying those things, and not over indulging all the time.

After realizing I am just going through the motions, I decided that since there are about 4 weeks left in the year, that I am going to rock those 4 weeks. I will enjoy some Christmas cookies, but I don’t need to eat until my stomach hurts. I will prep for success, focus on getting more fruit and veggies into my day, and continue to rock my workouts. Now that I called this to my attention, I feel that I will be in a spot where I can monitor my focus and commitment to my goals.

Sometimes we have to stop and ask ourselves are we committed? Are we giving it our all? This isn’t just for health, it could be for your job, a project, a relationship, anything that you are spending your energy on. It is so easy to go through the day kind of doing what we need to. If I am expecting results, the only reason I am not getting them is me. That’s the truth. As much as I would love to blame the weather, or some other uncontrollable force, I can’t.

So this morning, I gave my Hammer & Chisel workout my all and walked away dripping in sweat. I also made sure to plan my meals this week and incorporate healthy, yummy food and fruit and veggie snacks along the way. I set a reminder on my phone for 10am, noon to remember and focus on my goals. I also have a reminder at 4pm to workout and stay motivated.

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Here’s what I did to jump start my commitment:

  1. Take weight and measurements, write them down!
  2. Meal plan (write it down!) & grocery shop
  3. Meal prep for lunches, have dinners scheduled
  4. Set reminders on my phone to stay focused
  5. Plan my workouts for the week

 

You can do hard things. You just have to stay committed.
I believe in myself, and I believe in YOU!

Here’s to being happy & fit,
Victoria

 

 

 

Thankful

This morning, a photo popped up on my Facebook of a me last Thanksgiving. I paused for a minute and just thought wow. Last year I could barely run part of the Bonfield 5K, a tradition in my hometown, and this year I ran the whole thing! I think the fact I really had to go to the bathroom the whole time helped, but I didn’t stop! A lot has changed in a year, and I have so much to be thankful for.

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I am incredibly thankful that I decided to take my health and my happiness seriously. All too often we say next week, next month, next year. But why not now? I had many many months of thinking I would start next month, I would make small changes starting next month. I never did. It took me crying on the couch one night to finally snap out of it. I have an amazing community of hardworking girls who are making their goals a reality and who support each other no matter what. I love being apart of their journey too!

I am incredibly thankful for a husband who is always supporting me and loving me. Even when I was in the darkest place, he was there shining a light for me to see. Every small victory I have, he is there cheering for me. He is always making me smile and laugh. I couldn’t think of a better person to be with!

I am incredibly thankful for my family, who have to love me because we are family, but who are also just amazing people. I have realized growing up that families aren’t always picture perfect like you think they are when you are growing up. Despite different paths and schedules, we come together and are loud and full of love.

I am incredibly thankful for my job, my house, and the life I get to live. I wake up in the morning, and despite being extremely tired most mornings, I am excited for my day. I love my job, my coworkers, and my students. They make me want to be a better teacher everyday. I love coming home to the house we made into our home and building our life together.

I am so excited to see what life brings, and so grateful for all of you who are apart of it! I hope you have a great Thanksgiving with your family and friends and take a minute to appreciate the goodness in life.

Here’s to being happy & fit
-Victoria

Meal Prep Sunday – Chicken Noodle Soup

Who doesn’t love chicken noodle soup? It is perfect on those chilly days especially when you are feeling a cold coming on. After being around sick coughing children all day, I am always feeling a little less than 100%. So when I asked my husband what I should make us for lunch this week, he said chicken noodle soup. Of course, I could do this, and I could even use my Instant Pot again!

Don’t get me wrong, I liked the idea, but I felt like it needed more. It needed more vegetables. We were missing a huge opportunity to get more veggies in! I scoured the internet for a recipe that included the extra veggies, but I couldn’t find one for my instant pot. So I used this recipe from The Foodie and the Fix to get me started and then subbed in

I followed her directions, but when I added the pasta at the end, I also added green beans, zucchini, and tomatoes. I decided to add these ad the end because I didn’t want them to get too soggy and totally fall apart. I noticed that I am not getting as much vegetables everyday as I should be. I am not one to snack on veggies except for carrots, so I have been trying to incorporate them more into my lunches. This was an easy addition to give us more veggies while still enjoying our soup! You could totally add any veggie you wanted in this soup! I meant to add spinach, but I forgot!

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I love using my Instant Pot for recipes like this because I can saute right in the pot! Once I was done sauteing the carrots, green onion, celery, and garlic, I added the chicken and broth. I set my Instant Pot to soup for 15 minutes and let it go! It is awesome being able to meal prep soup, or really anything, in such a short amount of time. I am not the best planner, and generally run out of time. This has saved me!

So, if you are looking for an easy, quick, and healthy chicken noodle soup, I hope this helps! It is an easy dinner and a hearty lunch as the weather gets colder!

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Here’s to being happy & fit,
Victoria

 

Veggie Loaded Chicken Noodle Soup
Instant Pot Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 4 carrots, diced
  • 4 celery rods, diced
  • 1 bunch of green onions, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 zucchini, cut in half circles
  • 2 cups green beans, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes, can be fresh or canned
  • 2 large chicken breasts
  • 2-3 cups of whole wheat egg noodles (you could use any noodle you prefer!)
  • 6 cups chicken broth, low sodium is best
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp herbs d’provence

Instructions:

  1. Turn on Instant Pot to saute function. Saute onions, celery, and carrots seasoned with salt and pepper. After a few minutes add garlic and cook for another minute.
  2. Add broth and chicken, and some salt and pepper, to the Instant Pot. Turn to Soup and set for 15 minutes.
  3. When the Instant Pot is done, turn off and do a quick release. Make sure you are out of the way so you do not get hurt by the steam.
  4. Remove the chicken and place on a cutting board.
  5. Add pasta, tomatoes, green beans, spinach, and zucchini to the instant pot. Mix in with the soup. Turn on the Instant Pot to Soup again, and set your Instant Pot to zero minutes. This will build the pressure in the pot, but not over cook your noodles or vegetables.
  6. Shred the chicken while you wait for the Instant Pot to beep.
  7. When the Instant Pot is done, again turn off and do a quick release.
  8. Then add your chicken and herbs. Stir around and smell that delicious soup!

*If you are using a slow cooker, add all ingredients and set to low and cook for 6-8 hours. Chicken will shred easily when done.
*If you are cooking in a stock pot, add all ingredients and cook for about 20-30 minutes covered after bringing to a boil then set to simmer.

21 Day Fix Containers: 1.5 green, 1.5 red, 1 yellow for 2 cups

 

 

Meal Prep Monday Edition

It happens to all of us. We have the best intentions for our weekend, we will be the most productive and stay on top of our list and goals. Then the couch calls, or something pops up, and the next thing you know it is Sunday evening. You haven’t folded your laundry, you haven’t gone grocery shopping, and you definitely have not meal prepped.

This was me. Waking up this morning and realizing this stressed me out! What will I eat for lunch? What’s for dinner? What have I done?!

So, logically I went grocery shopping and picked out an easy recipe that I could throw together. My husband mentioned buffalo chicken, and I was sold. I love buffalo chicken…a lot. I began to look around on Pinterest for some inspiration. The Instant Pot saved me because I was able to cook three chicken breasts in 20 minutes and be able to shred them right away.

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I then made the Hidden Valley Greek Yogurt Dressing with low fat yogurt and low fat milk. I followed the directions right on the package. I let that set in the fridge for about 30 minutes. When I took it out, I added about a cup of Franks Red Hot Buffalo Sauce to the ranch. After I shredded the chicken, I put it in a container so we can put how much sauce we want in our serving of chicken. I portioned some out and put about 1.5 tablespoons of sauce for 1 cup of chicken.

In the morning, I will make my wrap with a spinach wrap, shredded carrots, tomatoes, lettuce, and the chicken. You could create a buffalo chicken bowl, sandwich, eat it with celery or bell pepper sticks,  on crackers, or just by itself! This is so versatile, easy, and delicious.

I had to taste the chicken before I put it away, and it tastes amazing! I love the buffalo sauce with the ranch. It is two of the best sauces put together. I am so excited to eat lunch this week.


Simple Buffalo Ranch Chicken

  1. Cook chicken breasts and shred. If you are using an Instant Pot, put chicken into the Instant Pot with one half to one cup of water, salt and pepper. Put on high for 20 minutes. Shred after quick release.
  2. Mix Hidden Valley Greek Yogurt dressing as stated on the package. Mix with 3 tablespoons of milk and one and one third cups of milk. Let set in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  3. Mix in one cup (more or less depending on taste) of Franks Red Hot Buffalo Sauce. Stir together.
  4. Serve with chicken!

Hope you enjoy!
Here’s to being happy & fit,
Victoria