All About Core De Force

If you had told me 3 years ago that I would be counting down the days to the release of a new workout program, I would have laughed in your face.  But here we are!  How times have changed.

As a mom, my midsection has been a “trouble spot” for a couple of years.  Plus, stress causes you to hang on to fat in your belly, and the past couple of years have been really stressful.  Anyone else out there looking to tone their core?  Lose a little belly fat?

Check this out:

Core De Force Promo

On October 31st, a new MMA-style program is being released that is focusing on core work.  Core De Force will have 8 different workouts with varying degrees of difficulty, all focusing on moves that force you to rotate your core in every direction to tone every part of your midsection.  The workouts don’t require any equipment, using only your own body weight, which I love because that makes it easier to modify!  They range from 25-45 minutes–they use the MMA fight format with 3 minute rounds at first, and then they work up to 6 minute rounds and 12 minute rounds.

This 30-day program comes with its own meal plan that uses the Portion Fix containers, and allows an increase in food during the more intense weeks of the program–any time I get more food, I’m all about it!

I’ve been able to do 2 sneak peek workouts of this program, and they were both SO FUN!  The workouts went by really quickly, and the 3-minute set up made it easier to push through moves.  Once the 3 minutes was up, that move was done and I could forget about it.  The next day, both times, I was sore in places I didn’t even realize I was using!  My lat muscles (running down from the shoulders) were really sore, which surprised me.  I didn’t realize how many muscles I was using!

This program is only available through coaches until closer to Christmas, so if you’re looking to do a program to help with your midsection, this is what you’re looking for!

Check out these transformations–and if you’re looking to work for a transformation for yourself, click here!

Chorizo, Black Bean, and Sweet Potato Chili

Now that the weather is finally turning to fall, I’m starting to make one of my favorite meals–a spicy chili that is inspired by Mexican flavors.

This recipe is something that I came up with after looking at a lot of chili recipes, so there is no “original” recipe linked.  There are a ton of black bean/sweet potato chili recipes out there–this is just my twist!

Chorizo is not the healthiest protein to include in a chili, so if you want to make this healthier, you can use lean ground beef or lean ground turkey to decrease the fat and salt content.  If you do switch the protein, you should increase the spices to increase the flavor.

This is a great recipe to make on a Sunday afternoon and eat for lunch throughout the week, and it’s a cheap and easy meal to make for a crowd.  This was actually part of the dinner I served our family for my husband’s 30th birthday celebration–and everyone loved it!

Chorizo, Black Bean, and Sweet Potato Chili

1 tbsp olive oil

1 medium-large sweet potato, peeled and cubed

28 oz can whole tomatoes, crushed in a food processor or with a blender

Two 14.5 oz cans petite diced tomatoes, no salt added

One 6 oz can tomato paste

1 lb chorizo

1 onion, chopped

14.5 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed

2 tsp cumin

2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper


Preheat oven to 400 F.  Toss cubed sweet potato with olive oil and salt/pepper to taste.  Roast on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper for 15-20 minutes, until soft.  Set aside.

Cook chorizo in a large skillet on med-high heat.  When chorizo is about halfway browned, add the chopped onion.  Cook, stirring frequently, until onion is soft and chorizo is completely browned.  Drain the fat and set aside.

Meanwhile, combine blended tomatoes, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste in a large stockpot over medium heat.  Add the spices and mix well.

Add the chorizo mixture, beans, and sweet potato to the tomato mixture and mix well.  Let simmer for 20 minutes to blend flavors.  Taste and adjust seasonings to taste.  The longer it simmers, the better the flavors!

Serve with grated cheese or greek yogurt (or sour cream).



October 2016 Recipes

Happy Monday!  This month has been a whirlwind.  I can’t believe Halloween is right around the corner–and I haven’t posted almost all month!

Since I haven’t done a great job sharing my meal plans with you this month, I wanted to make this post a sort of “recipe dump” of great healthy recipes that we have been enjoying in my house.  A lot of the meals we’ve been enjoying are some of my usual reliable recipes, like the clean eating sloppy joes, clean eating taco bowls,  and pasta with Grandma’s Tomato Sauce from Fixate. I’ve been experimenting with some crockpot recipes, as well, in preparation for my November free clean eating crockpot group in a few weeks.  I’m really excited to share those with you next month!

In the meantime, here are some recipes we’ve been loving in our house this month.

Creamy, Smoky Chipotle Pork Chops

Oven Baked Paleo Italian Meatballs (I used Grandma’s Tomato Sauce for the marinara)

Paleo Chicken Burrito Bowls

Paleo Chicken Stir Fry

Maple Sriracha Chicken 

Cucumber Tomato Avocado Salad

Clean Eating Philly Cheesesteak

Chorizo, Black Bean, and Sweet Potato Chili (recipe to come this week!)


During this month I’ve done pretty well sticking to my “getting out of my rut” plan, but the past week was a little rough nutritionally.  My husband went out of town for a few days and it was his birthday, and I just didn’t plan appropriately for being out of routine.  As a result, my Monday check-in with my weights and measurements wasn’t super encouraging, but also not surprising.

But, it’s a new week, and my October Back On Track clean eating group kicks off today, so I have all the tools I need to have some great results next week.  Everyone on my email list is getting a copy of the meal plan for my group this week, too!  If you want to be included in my email list, click here!


Paleo Chicken Tenders

A delicious meal on a tacky dollar store plate.

A delicious meal on a tacky dollar store plate.

My kid loves chicken tenders.  We try to only give him grilled chicken, but sometimes we get the horribly unhealthy fried tenders for him. He loves to dip them in ketchup and BBQ sauce, and even dips them into his applesauce.  I am always looking for healthier versions of foods he loves, and this has been saved on my Pinterest clean eating board for a while.  I am so glad I finally tried it!

I have had almond flour and coconut flour on hand for quite some time now specifically for this purpose–using as a breading on meat to make a flourless version of our favorite foods (baked, not fried, of course).  I find that the almond/coconut flours have a better flavor (the sweetness of the coconut flour is really good with chicken especially), and it doesn’t bloat me the way that regular wheat flours do.  Plus, I know that almonds and coconuts have some good vitamins and nutrients that my son needs, which makes it even better!

This recipe was quick and easy, and it tasted great!  It only takes about 20 minutes from start to finish. It is easy to customize with different spices as well, depending on your spice preference.  And it would taste great with any kind of dip your family likes–a healthy ranch, ketchup, BBQ sauce, mustard–whatever you prefer!  The original recipe was doubled and is linked below.

I would love to say that my kiddo ate this up and declared his love immediately, but unfortunately for me the night I made this he decided to be 2-going-on-16, threw an epic tantrum, and refused to eat anything. Yay me! However, when we had the leftovers for lunch he was a huge fan! 

Paleo Chicken Tenders (from Jay’s Baking Me Crazy original recipe)

1 package chicken tenders (3/4 lb)

2 tbsp + 2 tsp coconut flour

2 eggs

1 tbsp unsweetened cashew milk (or any milk)

1/2 cup almond flour

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp black pepper


Preheat the oven to 425 F.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

Prepare 3 shallow bowls or dishes for the breading process.  Put the coconut flour in one dish.  Mix the egg and milk together in another dish.  mix the almond flour and spices in the last dish.

Place the dishes in order, left to right: coconut flour, egg mixture, almond mixture, and cookie sheet.  One at a time, dip each chicken tender into the coconut flour, then the egg mixture, and then the almond flour mixture, completely coating each time.  Place on the cookie sheet.  Repeat with each chicken tender.

Once all of the chicken is breaded and on the cookie sheet, spray lightly with olive oil or coconut oil cooking spray.

Bake chicken tenders for 10 minutes, then flip and bake 5 more minutes.  Make sure chicken is completely cooked through!

Let cool slightly and serve plain or with your dip of choice.  I served mine with broccoli and hummus.

This recipe made 6 tenders, which was enough for me to have dinner and have leftovers for lunch for 2.


My 3 Day Refresh, Round 2

This summer was really hard for me.  I was a new stay at home mom struggling to get used to a new routine with a toddler who doesn’t really adjust well to change. It was stressful, and I’m a stress eater.  So I ate.  And I’ve put on more weight that I’m not happy with, and once I got my head on straight and my emotions in order with the stress of the summer, I was ready to make a change.


I decided to try the 3 Day Refresh again, which is a 3-day program that is basically a vegan diet with some supplement drinks.  It’s lower in calorie than I would normally eat, but I needed to reset my body and diet and I do better with something that is very structured and already laid out for me, rather than just “eating healthier” on my own.  I did the 3 Day Refresh program just over a year ago, but since I did it the weekend that we were moving, I feel like I didn’t really do it the best way since lugging heavy boxes up and down stairs all day isn’t recommended.

I started on a Friday and ended on a Sunday so that I could start working out hard on the first Monday of the month and follow my new workout plan.  The Refresh plan is pretty straight forward–lots of water, LOTS of fresh veggies, some healthy fats, a little fruit, and the supplement drinks.  I still drank my Shakeology every morning, but I just blended it with water and ice instead of my usual recipe.  I had a Fiber Sweep drink as a midmorning snack, and a Vanilla Fresh protein shake with lunch and dinner.


The Fiber Sweep drink was exactly like I remembered it–citrus flavor, super thick texture.  It isn’t thick like a milkshake, unless you let it sit for too long (which honestly is about 5 minutes; you have to drink it fast!), but kind of like thick water.  Not my favorite, but not as horribly gross as a drink titled “Fiber Sweep” might sound.  And it didn’t make me run to the bathroom like you might think, either.  It made me a little gassy, but didn’t affect me in a dramatic way like a fiber drink could.  It filled me up as a small snack and helped tide me over to the next meal time.

The Vanilla Fresh drinks are pretty tasty, especially when I blended some fruit with it.  I didn’t do that more than once, because I wanted to actually chew my food to help my brain realize how much I was eating.  I was afraid that if I mixed in fruit with my shakes that I would end up feeling hungrier.  I don’t know if that’s a real thing or not, but it made sense to me!

Before starting, I was really concerned that I was going to just feel like I was starving all the time.  I didn’t remember feeling super hungry last year, and I didn’t go back and read my blog post because I wanted a fresh experience, but I was concerned that maybe the stress and busyness of moving that same weekend distracted me from what I was feeling.  This time around, I felt pretty hungry, mostly/especially in the mornings.  Until lunch each day, I was basically on a liquid diet–Shakeology with fruit, tons of water, some herbal tea, and the Fiber Sweep.  Not a whole lot of actual volume, even though the Shakeology and the Fiber Sweep are both full of a ton of nutrients that my body needed.  Lunch, afternoon snack, and dinner options were much more filling and I felt pretty satisfied with those options.  In fact, I chose a salad option for two of my three dinners, and it was SO MANY VEGGIES that I could barely finish.  It took my about 20 minutes to just eat the salad because I had to force myself to chew it–not in a “this doesn’t taste good” way, but more in a “I’m tired of chewing” way.  Lol.

One amazing thing that I realized on Day 3 is that even though I felt hungry, I didn’t have ANY specific cravings.  In the mornings I wanted to have food to chew, not just drink, but the nutrients in everything I was eating was giving my body exactly what it needed because I didn’t crave anything specific.  No bread or carb cravings, no sweets cravings, no meat cravings.  Even when I went to the pumpkin patch and watched my whole family eating–chili, hot dogs (ew), funnel cake, BBQ, etc–I wasn’t sitting there drooling and wishing I could eat what they were eating.  I was sitting there wishing I had all my veggies to eat!  That was pretty awesome to realize–I was giving my body what it needed and I wasn’t craving the junk that it doesn’t need.

The biggest negative for me, besides just being hungry in the mornings, was the major bloating I experienced on day 1.  A little Google search has me thinking that since my diet was so off before I started the Refresh, my body had more that it needed to get rid of and wasn’t used to all the fiber it was getting through the Fiber Sweep and all the veggies, which makes sense to me.  It was crazy bloating!  I was very gassy and uncomfortable most of the first day, and that night after I had all my food and water for the day, I swear I looked like I was 5 months pregnant.  It was unbelievable!  That was hard for my mindset and my pride, because frankly part of the reason I did the Refresh was so I could have a “win” with my body.  I needed the structure and the quick gratification for my own motivation, and the crazy bloating made me think that maybe I had made a mistake.  But once I started reading about other people experiencing that as well and the connection to a bad diet before, I felt better and knew that the Refresh was going to help me at least feel better, if not look better, too.

Sunday night--after eating all my food and drinks for the day!  No food baby belly!

Sunday night–after eating all my food and drinks for the day! No food baby belly!

When I woke up the next day and compared pictures to just 24 hours before, I couldn’t believe how different I looked!  It was amazing to me what 24 hours of super clean eating can do for you.  That was all the motivation I needed to keep going.

24 hours difference!

24 hours difference!

Ultimately, I lost 4.2 lbs and 1.5 inches, mostly in my belly area.  More importantly than that, I feel better.  I feel better physically–lighter, more energized, not sluggish, and just generally healthier.  I feel better mentally/emotionally–taking care of my body helps my mindset, makes me feel proud, makes me more confident, and makes me more comfortable in my skin.  I’m fitting into my pants better, and I’m motivated to continue!  (I do realize that the short time frame means that I lost water weight and not actual fat, but that’s okay!  I still feel awesome!)

The results from my 3 Day Refresh.

The results from my 3 Day Refresh.

I didn’t feel this way last year, but I would definitely recommend this program!  It was the structure I needed to jumpstart clean eating again without cheating, it gave me some instant gratification to help my motivation, and it gave me some results that motivate me, as well.

Do you need some structure and some quick motivation to jumpstart your health journey?  Contact me and let’s connect!