wiaw – a month of clean eats

September 24, 2014 in 24 Day Challenge, Advocare, Blog, Diet, Food, WIAW by lindsaymwright

It’s been quite some time since I’ve participated in Jenn’s “What I Ate Wednesday” so I thought I’d share some of the food pictures on my phone.  I confess – some of these meals are pretty boring.  Travis and I just finished up the 24 Day Advocare Challenge so we had to focus on real, whole foods for the month.  We ate SO many salads (at least one every day), lots of healthy fats via avocados, nuts and coconut oil, and a lot of fresh fruit!  No junk food, no pizza, no brownies…no “fun” food.  BUT we feel WAY better and hope to continue this long streak of clean eating (with lots of treats mixed in :) )!  I’ll be sharing our before/after results on Friday so stay tuned!

A glimpse at our latest eats!

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^^Yep.  I eat McDonald’s.^^

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^^You must try these!!   I’ve seen something similar called Harvest Snaps around here.^^

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^^LOVE the portability of the Peanut Butter & Co. squeeze pack.^^

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^^In our BACKYARD!!!^^

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^^YUM!!^^

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^^Reduce, REUSE, recycle.^^

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^^Grape Spark & Catalyst!^^

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^^Simple Pumpkin Spice Protein Cookies (with stevia-sweetened baking chips!).  Would you like this recipe?^^

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QUESTION:  What type of diet would you say you eat (80/20, Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, etc)??

splendid…lindsay

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stove tops, boiled cookies, no-bakes….i won’t give up on you

September 17, 2014 in Blog, Dessert, Food, Recipe by lindsaymwright

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These cookies are my very favorite in all the world.  I think I like them for their simplicity and the fact that I almost always have all the ingredients on hand.  I.e. “on a whim” cookies.  This can be a good and a bad thing, as there’s really nothing stopping you from making these bad boys every single week.  Except your thighs.  Your thighs might scream in protest.

I’ve had a problem lately though.

For the past 5 (ok maybe 10 years), I haven’t been able to make these cookies set up.

I’ve quadruple-checked the recipe.  I’ve measured once, twice, three times.  I’ve used less milk, more milk, less boiling time, more.  And before you tell me not to make them on rainy days, I already know that tip.  We wait until the sun is blazing at high noon before I even dare pull the pot out.  Sometimes I’ll get a fluke batch that sets up, but I believe my failure rate is 90 percent.

They just do not work for me.

But that doesn’t stop me from making them.  Because they taste even BETTER on a spoon.  Because Clara “yoves” them.

And because I’m not a quitter.

Stove Top Cookies

(my mama’s recipe)

Ingredients

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup milk (whole)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 tbsp. dark cocoa
  • 2 1/4-2 1/2 cups quick oats
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Combine first four ingredients in a pot.  Heat until boiling.  Allow to boil for 2 minutes.  Stir in last three ingredients.  Drop by spoonfuls onto wax paper.  Allow 15-30 minutes to set up.  (or just eat them with a spoon)

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QUESTION:  Do you have a recipe that just will NOT work for you??  I’m afraid to ask…but what are you tips on these cookies?

splendid…lindsay

the 24 day advocare challenge

August 20, 2014 in 24 Day Challenge, Advocare, Blog, Body, Food by lindsaymwright

Happy hump day, friends!

Let’s skip all the chit chat and get right down to business.  Let’s talk about a new challenge that’s going down over here at the Wright house!

I have a confession.

I’ve been eating WAY too many sweets lately.

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We plummeled through this cake.

I need to reel it in a bit.  We went to the beach where we had nightly bowls of ice cream and treats and I kinda just never stopped having those treats when we got home.  Whoops.  Smile  I’m always game for dessert….I just probably shouldn’t be having something every.single.night.  It’s actually starting to effect the way I feel – sluggish and tired.  My digestion is a bit off.  I’m ready for a change.

Travis too.

As I’ve said, we’re training for an upcoming race and we want to feel GOOD while training.  We want to be at our best.  Eating junky sweets every night isn’t helping.

All this being said, we’re starting a 24 Day Advocare Challenge and I’m going to blog about the journey.

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Correction.  Travis will be doing the full challenge.  Since I’m nursing, I’ll be doing another 10 Day Challenge (read more about that here) and will continue to take those supplement for the 24 days with Travis.  Today I want to share a little bit about the actual products and program design for anyone who might want to do this challenge WITH US!  (it’s always nice to have a team together for support!)

What IS the 24 Day Advocare Challenge?

The 24 Day Advocare Challenge is a comprehensive supplementation and nutrition program that helps with weight management, liver detox and metabolism.  There are two phases within the 24 days: The CLEANSE phase (Days 1-10) and the MAX phase (Days 11-24).  Every Challenge kit comes with a handy dandy guide that tell you EXACTLY when to take each supplement so there’s no guesswork involved.

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The Supplements:

The Cleanse phase is 10 days long and is designed to remove waste, rid your body of toxins, and prepare it for maximum nutrient absorption.  This is a three-part supplement regimen.  The herbal cleanse is taken morning and night and it cleanses the digestive system and removes any accumulated toxins (get the Peaches & Cream!!!!).  The Omegaplex is a blend of fatty acids that help with heart, nerve, muscle, skin, bone, and immune health.  The third part is the SPARK energy drink mix.  It promotes mental focus and increased energy.

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The second part of the challenge (days 11-24) helps to give your newly cleansed body the best tools to achieve your goals.  The Max phase has four supplements:  the MNS vitamin pack, a meal replacement shake, the Omegaplex capsules and SPARK.  012

We also ordered some “companion” products: Catalyst and ThermoPlus (for Travis only – I can’t take this while nursing), along with a few other SPARK flavors (because we couldn’t decide on just one – now that I’ve tasted Mango Strawberry, it’s my favorite!).

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Why are we doing this Challenge?

Like I said earlier, we both just want to feel better.  We have different goals that we hope the Challenge will help us meet.  For me, I want to get the max benefit from all these amazing workouts that I’ve been doing recently and a diet clean-up will help with that.  I want for my digestion to improve (and know that it will with the help of these products).  And lastly, I wouldn’t mind losing a few pounds.   Travis’ goals are similar but he also has a very specific picture that he’d like to take with Porter on his back.  He’s got the muscles for the picture – he just needs to shed a few pounds to make it on point.

We’re doing it together because we know that it will be way easier this way.  No sweets in the house, full support from each other, accountability…I’m excited to have someone to do this with!

But, what about food??

When you order the 24 Day Challenge, you receive a helpful nutrition guide that describes which foods to eat and which to avoid. The nutrition approach is VERY balanced and includes dairy, healthy fats, lean proteins, fruits and vegetables. You get three meals and three snacks a day – you shouldn’t ever feel hungry, that’s not the goal! I’ll be honest and tell you right up front – aside from cutting out desserts and sweets (i.e. cereals, teddy grahams, processed junk), I’m not going to get overly restrictive with any of my food intake. Travis will be doing the Challenge by the book.

We’ll also be drinking around 84 ounces of water a day!

NO COFFEE – Spark will replace that!

When does it start?

We’ll be starting the Challenge on August 30th.  It’s a Saturday.  Travis picked this day because he thinks that psychologically Mondays are the worst days to start diets/cleanses and Saturdays are the easiest.  I don’t have any studies or proof to back that logic up…but it makes sense to me.  Saturday, August 30th it is!

The Challenge will end on September 22nd!

How can I join in?

If you’re interested in joining us during the Challenge, you can purchase your 24 Day Kit here!  I’ll be blogging about our journey together each week and sharing before, during and after shots of our progress.  I’d encourage you to join in with us and recruit friends and family too – it’s much easier to do this with a group of people!

Ready to do the Challenge with us??

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QUESTION:  Have you ever done the Advocare Challenge before?  Thoughts?  Tips??

splendid…lindsay

tips for saving time in the kitchen

August 14, 2014 in Blog, Breakfast, Dinner, Family, Favorites, Food, Lunch, Review by lindsaymwright

**I was sent free product by Flapjacked Protein Pancakes in exchange for this review.  All opinions are my own and I have/will used my own money to purchase this product before!**

We’ve all been there.

You open the fridge and there’s absolutely nothing to eat.  Or rather, there’s a yogurt, two sticks of celery, deli meat and a hunk of cheese that you vaguely remember buying last week.  Or was it last month.  Just scrape the mold off.  Cheese is supposed to be moldy and stinky.  I’ve been fortunate enough to have some freezer meals tucked away from after Porter’s birth (thanks to our church family!!!) but for the most part I still have to prepare food, three times a day, seven days a week, for this family of five.

Meh.

I want to like being in the kitchen.  I want to like preparing meals.  But I just don’t.  I don’t have that part of homemaking in me.  Luckily my clan is easy to satisfy: cereal for dinner (and lunch…and breakfast), casseroles, crockpot dishes, mac n’ cheese and microwave quesadillas.  Those are our “go-to’s.”

(Yes.  I said microwave quesadillas.)

Since I’ve yet to find a personal chef that will cook in return for a smile and one of Clara’s crayon drawings, I have to get myself in the kitchen and feed this family.  Here are some of my “go-to” tips for saving time in the kitchen.  SUPER applicable coming from the laziest mama around.

Tips for Saving Time in the Kitchen

1.  Prepare lean proteins in advance!

In an effort to eat healthy, we always buy a large pack of chicken breasts and grill them at the start of the week.  Money saving tip: buy the largest pack you can find (on sale) and then cut off the skin and de-bone at home.  You’ll save quite a bit of money over time and it doesn’t take that long.  I even use kitchen shears to cut the chicken into long, tenderloin-type strips so that they grill faster!  Once cooked, we store the chicken in the fridge for up to 3-4 days and incorporate them into our meals!  Thirty minutes to prep your meats will save you a lot of time during the week.

Other lean proteins that pair easily with steamed veggies or on a big salad:  baked/grilled turkey breast, hard-boiled eggs, diced honey baked ham.

2.  Aluminum foil is your friend!

In order to save time scrubbing grease and cooked-on particles from your baking dishes, line everything with aluminum foil.  Once your dish is cooked, you simply throw out the aluminum foil – no elbow grease required.  I also buy crockpot liners that function in the same manor.  (Coupons.com almost always has a $.75 coupon for Reynold’s wrap foil!)  Who wants to be stuck scrubbing dishes?!   Not I.

3.  Pre-cut your fruits and vegetables.

Whenever I prepare our grilled chicken for the week, I also take the time to cut up broccoli, cauliflower and carrots (we go through SO many carrots!).  I also make a large bowl of fruit salad (cantaloupe, peaches, blueberries and cherries are in our fridge now).  When healthy items like these are prepped (and put at an easy level for the kids to grab), we gobble them up much faster.

4.  Make breakfasts EASY!!

My last tip:  prep your breakfasts!  If there’s one meal that I rarely have time to cook, it’s breakfast!  This often results in us having cereal, but I’m really trying to mix things up and provide a little more protein at this meal.  That’s where Flapjacked Protein Pancakes help out!  With this easy to make (seriously, all you need is water), high protein, high fiber option, I can create a large batch at the start of the week and FREEZE them in ziplock bags!  I just pop a few in the microwave and serve them up!

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We like to add blueberries or chopped bananas and strawberries to the mix and then top them with almond butter and maple syrup.  I think the one thing I like the best is that after I eat these protein pancakes, I don’t feel like there’s a big glob of dough in the bottom of my belly – they’re light!!  One serving has just 200 calories and 17 grams of protein!  Waaaaaay better than a bowl of cereal.

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Flapjacked is having a BACK TO SCHOOL SALE (starting today and running through the 17th).  Take 20% off your total order by using the promo code: BACKTOSCHOOL!

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Go here to buy! You can also stay current with later sales by following them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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QUESTION:  What are some of YOUR tips for saving time in the kitchen?  (seriously – I’ll take any advice you can throw my way!)

splendid…lindsay

crunchy chocolate chip cookie protein balls

August 1, 2014 in Blog, Breakfast, Recipe, Snack by lindsaymwright

**Full disclosure:  I feature some products in this post, some were gifted and some I bought.  All opinions are my own.**

(warning. I say “balls” a lot today.)

Promise you this – I’ll never claim to be good at cooking.  Baking.  Grilling.  Chef-ing. (?)  But I make these balls every week and my kids (and hubby…well, and I) gobble them up.  If you want some REALLY good protein balls, go check out this girl.  She’s legit and awesome and pretty and my friend and I’m in love with her Spring Sprinkle balls.  In fact, they were the one sweet thing that I could eat during my pregnancy with Porter.  I’d order two dozen at a time and tuck them away in the very back of my freezer where nary a child or husband could find them.

Anyway, I’ve found that I can throw ingredients in a bowl, mix them up, form them into circles and they taste pretty good.  Perfect for a pre or post-workout snack (depending on what type of protein powder you use) or just anytime you’re passing by the freezer and remember that you want to eat a ball.  Which for me happens to be multiple times a day.  I even made a huge batch of these to take to the beach to help fuel our long days in the sun!

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There are a few star players here.  We’ve got the two protein powders:   ON Casein (the “slow digester”) and Plant Fusion (the “quick digester”).  The “crunch” comes from the oatmeal and Crunchy NuttZo.  Another must for the successful protein ball are, of course, chocolate chips.  I mean…you’ve freaking worked out.  You deserve a little chocolate.  Am I right??  I am.  Lily’s Sweets (who was one of our Blend sponsors) just sent me some goodies, one of which was their STEVIA-sweetened dark chocolate baking chips!!

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These chips are pretty amazing – with 25% fewer calories when compared to traditional baking chips.  I’m thinking that means you can skip the workout and move right on to the balls.

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(balls. balls. balls.

Told ya.)

crunchy chocolate chip protein balls via @lindsays_list
(hover over the image to “pin”)

Crunchy Chocolate Chip Protein Balls

Yields 3 dozen balls

Ingredients:

  • 1 scoop Optimum Nutrition Natural Casein – French Vanilla
  • 1 scoop Plant Fusion – Chocolate
  • 1/2 cup quick oats
  • 1/2 cup Crunchy Power Fuel Nuttzo
  • 1/3 cup honey (can sub maple syrup or agave)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup Lily’s dark chocolate baking chips

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Add in nut butter, honey and vanilla.  Mix together with hands.  If needed, add liquid (milk, almond milk, egg whites, even water) to make balls moist.  Mix in chocolate chips.  Form into teaspoon size balls and place on wax paper.  Store in an airtight container in the freezer.

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QUESTION:  Protein balls?  Love/hate?  What do you put in yours??

splendid…lindsay

wiaw – just pretend there are pictures

July 23, 2014 in WIAW by lindsaymwright


Dude.

Put a flippin’ fork in me.  I am donezo.

I just spent the last hour and a half dealing with blog problems.  Things are still not working out and I’m kinda over it.  I took pictures of everything I ate yesterday for a WIAW post and now it’s taking me like 15 minutes PER PICTURE to upload.  I don’t have time for this.

So just pretend that you can see pictures.

Before a track workout, I drank a watermelon Spark.  {the workout rocked – thanks Katy & Callie}

For breakfast, I had a green smoothie.

Then a banana and Nuttzo.

Then some peanut M&Ms on the drive to the pool.

For lunch, I ate a sandwich, carrots & hummus, cherries and a string cheese.

Then I had a Simply Protein bar.

Then I sampled all three varieties of brownies that my sister made to get me fat.

For dinner, I ate a grilled chicken salad so I wouldn’t get fat.

Before bed, I ate cereal with banana and honey.

When I type it all out like that, it’s not very interesting.  So here, I’ll take the 15 minutes and upload the BEST thing I ate all day yesterday.

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[red velvet, dark chocolate, & almond joy brownies....the almond joy won, hands down!]

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QUESTION:  What’s the best thing you ate yesterday??  Anybody else having blog problems?

splendid…lindsay