Connect the Dots Ginger | Becky Allen: August 2019

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Meal Planning? #1 Tip To Learn How To Meal Prep Like A Pro


*This post contains affiliate links.

I've been a coach for a long time, and this year, I've really been focusing on my nutrition journey and what I noticed, as I talked a lot with my customers about nutrition, was many of them found meal planning SO HARD! Just learning how to get started. So...I am making learning how to meal plan an integral part of my coaching now! From hosting meal planning sessions with my test groups for our new program and then opening it up once a month to all my customers so they can learn and improve!

Why is meal planning important? Because without a plan, you are flying by the seat of your pants. How many times have you gone out for dinner, or sent your hubs out to get food, because you didn't have any idea what to make for dinner and it was already to late to try and figure it out? ALL THE TIME unless I meal plan! When I meal plan, I've got that nagging feeling of, I've already bought all the ingredients and we already have a plan in place, might as well use what we have. Does this always work, of course not, but 9 times out of 10 it does. So, you want to learn how to get started right

#1 Tip to learning how to meal prep like a pro: 

START WITH PLANNING OUT all your meals for only 1 category of food (either dinner, lunch or breakfast). I plan all my dinners FIRST because that is the meal with our entire family, and it has to be something that they will all like. And because I'm a busy mom I pick 3 dinner recipes a week to make and make enough to have leftovers the next day. So I'm only cooking 3 nights a week and then just heating up the leftovers the next day.

So my schedule would look like this:
This is a great starting point to just get started with meal planning as a beginner. As a beginner, DO NOT PLAN OUT EVERY MEAL FOR THE WHOLE WEEK. It's totally intimidating and a huge thing to take on. Start small. 



For me, the way I plan my meals is I eat following the Ultimate Portion Fix Program. Meaning, I get a specific serving amount of veggies, protein, carbs, fruits and healthy fats in a day. I actually figure out the serving amounts in my dinners and then I'll plan out the rest of the day so I don't over eat on my containers and keep it super simple following my food lists. Plus with access to the healthy cooking show that goes along with it and it's even included in our online fitness library, it makes it easy to plan out meals. 

Or, aim to eat a veggie and protein at all my other meals, and having some carbs and fruits. Don't forget the healthy fats too! 

The goal is to keep it simple! Want more tips, be sure to follow me on Instagram or you can WORK WITH ME and send me an email to get started 

Want more daily motivation and inspiration? Click here get free advice, support and encouragement + a free copy of my Clean Eating guide to help you get started on your health and fitness journey! Don't forget to follow me on INSTAGRAM and FACEBOOK

Monday, August 5, 2019

What's In My Gym Bag? Favorite Items To Fill My Travel Bag On The Go

Let me start by saying that this is NOT a sponsored post, but all items in the photo are part of a monthly subscription box I personally pay for, AND LOVE, every month! Want to learn more about the box, You can visit them at SWEAT AND SPARKLE BOX . Decide to order, get $5 off your first box with promo code: FITGINGER. Cause you all know I love to hook you up with awesome stuff and DISCOUNTS! 

A few weeks ago I traveled to Indianapolis, Indiana for a HUGE conference with 20,000 other health and fitness coaches. There were LOTS of trainings, and fun and since it was health and fitness, lots of ways to get sweaty! 

We worked out at Monument Circle TWICE, went to a American Ninja Warrior Training Gym and there were even workouts with our Super Trainers. And what did I do, I stayed at a hotel that was over 20 minutes away. With all the working out, and lack of shower I had to really get creative about how I was going to clean up after all the sweat sessions. Well, it kind of worked out well considering that EVERY SHIPMENT of my Sweat and Sparkle box, since I signed up for had something that I needed for on the go. From the Vooray Bag, to dry shampoo AND conditioner and even body wipes. Plus I was able to take my 12 week fit journal and pack snacks for a great post workout treat. And of course I had to have my EXTRA LARGE water bottle to keep my hydrated. 

Top 5 things you Need in your gym bag/ travel bag/go bag:

1) Change of clothes. if you are working out at a gym or on the go, you gotta remember to check to make sure you have a change of clothes especially socks and undies. Always change right after your workout so your bits are hanging out in a sweaty mess.

2) Dry Shampoo! It's a must to help me get styled faster. I personally have long, long hair and it takes forever to wash, dry and then style. Dry Shampoo has changed my life. Just spay it in and leave it or use the blow dryer to style but it at least cleans up my scalp a little from the sweat. And it adds extra texture to my hair and give it more volume! WIN for thin hair!

3) Body wipes, and face wipes too, if you don't have access to a shower after. I've gotten in the habit of rinsing off after working out. And to know I wasn't going to have that option I needed really good body wipes. I was looking everywhere on line deciding what to get and then I remembered, I got a whole box in my shipment! YAY! Gone are the days of baby wipes showers (it's a military thing!) These body wipes are big, thick and smell good and WORK!

4) WATER BOTTLE! Stay hydrated, Yo! Because being dehydrated sucks! So keep a bottle or 2 in your bag for when on the go and fill it up often!

5) Snacks! Have snacks in your bag so you have something to nosh on after your workout. If you are on the go you might not be able to get food right away. So have a snack in there so you don't get HANGRY!

Again, if you clicked on the links and saw the price of some of those items, I DID NOT PAY THAT! My Sweat and Sparkle Subscription Box comes filled with awesome items for fitness, health and beauty at a fraction of the item's prices! Want $5 off your first box? Enter FITGINGER at checkout in the promo code for the hookup!

Want more daily motivation and inspiration? Click here get free advice, support and encouragement + a free copy of my Clean Eating guide to help you get started on your health and fitness journey! Don't forget to follow me on INSTAGRAM and FACEBOOK

Thursday, August 1, 2019

What If Your Weight Loss Progress Takes Longer Than You Want?


Have you been feeling stuck in your progress? Following your meal plan, workout schedule, but still the scale is hovering around the same 5 pounds for a while? Girl, I've been between 242-247 pounds for a year now! I know how you feel. This is the exact reason why I take pictures OFTEN to compare my start to now so that I can see the results.

Just like the ones! Compare Oct 2017 and July 31 below.

There are a few factors in play as to why you might not be losing the weight as fast as you expect it to happen.

Expectations: The first, is a key phrase in the last sentence I just used. AS FAST AS YOU EXPECT IT TO. Often times we have expectations on exactly how much weight we should lose, how fast, and what we should look like after doing x amount of work. The reality of your body is that your body is your body. It won't act like "Karen's" body, that lost 10 pounds in 2 weeks by starting a new fitness program or "Shannon's" body that lost all the baby weight within the first 8 weeks of having her new baby all from breastfeeding. All bodies are different. And each of our bodies are going through their own stuff. This process is about learning how your body responds to what you are doing. Your journey is a lifelong pursuit, I know you don't want your weight loss to take the rest of your life to be accomplished but what I mean is that it's not something that should be rushed or by taking short cuts (super low calorie deficits, following a "fad" diet or doing excessive exercise to burn more than you eat.) Know that your journey might take longer. Mine is and it's taken me a LONG time to be okay with that. I literally had to accept that fact that my journey is my journey. So I'm sharing that advice with you.

Realistic: Are you really following your meal plan? Are you really following all your workouts? Are you really pushing yourself in your workouts getting the max calorie burn? Wait, what about taking a bite or 2 from your kids plate or just finishing the leftovers cause there was only a bite or 2 left on their plate? What about the crust they demand you cut off or else it's the worst food in the world, did you take a bite or 2 of those? Oh, don't forget that sexy date you went on with your partner last week and you guys shared a plate, including dessert. What about that birthday party you attended 2 weeks ago where you had some cake and a pop. Believe it or not, taking a bite here or there, not eating on plan or even having a whole day "off plan" can actually make a difference.

YOUR ACTION STEP: Write down EVERYTHING you eat for the next 2 weeks. If it goes in your mouth, WRITE IT DOWN! No if, and's or fries about it. It might be an eye opening experience to see if you are actually eating more than you intend.

Now let's talk about exercise. For Beachbody workouts, their meal plan calculators are based on you burning a specific amount of calories during your workout. But if you aren't burning that many calories, yet you are eating in the bracket you should be in based on the intended number of calories burned, you could very well be over eating. And even over eating the good foods, isn't ideal. It's still over eating which can lead to not losing weight.

YOUR ACTION STEP: Push yourself in your workouts. You should not have anything left in the tank when you are done. You give it your all because you are worth more than to half ass anything. PUSH YOURSELF! If you have to take a break, take a break to lower that heart rate, move around but don't stop. Don't sit. Don't take a 30 min break. You want to keep that heart rate up but not sky rocketing. You are training your body to work and recover more efficiently. And that requires you to push yourself.

More To The Story: If you are truly 100% on meal plan, and you are giving it all that you got in your workouts, there could be other things going on with your body. When's the last time you talked to your doctor and had a blood panel done to check hormone levels, thyroid, and all that stuff checked out. Knowing if you have something holding you back is power. Because they you have a better understand of how to deal with it. For me, it's PCOS. Hormone imbalance. And because my body has it's hormones imbalanced, and insulin resistance means it's twice as hard to lose weight. Plus, along this journey I've learned that I also have food sensitivities, and I'm trying to repair my "gut". If you look at my progress side by side picture above, I've only lost 12 pounds between the 2. Yet, I've lost over 30 inches on my body, over 8% body fat, I'm leaner, stronger, and more physically fit now than I ever have been.

YOUR ACTION STEP: Schedule a well visit for your yearly physical to make sure all the hormones and your body is functioning as well as it should be. Also this is a great time to talk to your doc about what you've been going through. They might suggest you to talk to a nutritionist or registered dietician to make sure you are eating exactly what you need to be eating. Make your doc aware, because they are probably going to want to see you back in 6 months to chart your progress, especially if you are taking the recommended steps but still no change.

Know that progress takes time. And for some of us, it can take a long time. You have to really make the effort and be your own detective to find the problem. But remember, diets, weight loss programs, fitness programs, do not work unless you honestly and really do the work, or there is something else physiology getting in the way.

Use photos like mine or on Instagram as inspiration and goals but not as a way to demoralize yourself and make you feel bad for not making progress as fast as you think. And don't EVER let anyone tell you that you aren't making enough progress. Your journey is your journey. Be patient. Be forgiving. Be committed. Be dedicated. Be unwavering in your daily activities. Be dedicated. Be persistent. Be willing to learn. Be willing to try. BE YOU! 

If you are ready to start your journey, or even up level it to the next level with 1:1 coaching and support, let's work together! Message me on Facebook or Instagram or EMAIL ME and let's chat about your goals and what we can do together to help you get there!

Want more daily motivation and inspiration? Click here get free advice, support and encouragement + a free copy of my Clean Eating guide to help you get started on your health and fitness journey! Don't forget to follow me on INSTAGRAM and FACEBOOK
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