Connect the Dots Ginger | Becky Allen

Thursday, December 8, 2016

2016 Gift Guide For Your Fitness Loving Friend

Need some inspiration on what to get for your fitness loving friend this year? Check out my guide to help you out! 

INSPIRATIONAL WORKOUT TOPS:
Inspirational and motivational workout shirts are all the rage now! I LOVE THEM! And they are fun! Check out Teespring. They always have some good campaigns going on. I actually just got this one pictured!

CUTE SPORTS BRAS: 
I am a sucker for super cute back sports bras! Oh goodness I love them. Of course they have to be supportive too for the activity I am doing. I love my Dash Seamless Bra sports bra by Fabletics but they don't sell that kind anymore. They have a Dash Seamless Bra 2 version. Victoria's Secret is coming out with some super cute designs too!

WORKOUT APPAREL SUBSCRIPTION: 
Fabletics is my go to subscription. Most outfits are $60 for the whole 3 piece outfit. Not too bad.

AT HOME WORKOUT EQUIPMENT:
Working out at home is my go to now, especially with 3 kids. I can't afford to put them in the gym daycare for me to workout in. So now it is time to start building up my home gym. Check out these T Grip bars


FUN WORKOUT SOCKS:
White socks are just plain boring. Spice up your outfit with fun socks! Check out all the fun colors from Bombas

WATER BOTTLES:
Don't just have a water bottle, get a SMART water bottle. Check out this Thermos Water Bottle not only tracks your water, but the temperature, tracks your intake daily with graphs, with a battery life of up to 12 days! Crazy huh!

GIFT FOR RUNNERS:
Have a friend who loves running? These Flip Belts make carrying gels, snacks, keys and other stuff easier than a hip pack!


ACTIVITY TRACKER:
This Garmin Vivofit not only tracks your steps, but reminds you to get up and move, plus tracks your calories, distance and time of day.

PERSONALIZED YOGA MAT:
Yoga mats can be used for more than just yoga. I tend to use mine to help protract my knees on my hard wood floors. Also to protect my back side when doing core workouts too. Check out these monogramed yoga mats by My Custom Yoga Mat

Be sure to pin this for later to be able to find it!
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!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Bump Update: 2 Months Postpartum

It's easy to look at these pictures and think..."she's just had a baby and is breastfeeding. Of course she is going to lose weight!" 

NOPE! NOT FOR ME! While losing weight because of breastfeeding may be true for some people it is NOT for me. I actually tend to gain weight. Because I like many people LOVE FOOD! And breastfeeding makes me more hungry. I tended to reach for quick snacks and lots of treats or just over eat and whatever weight I lost just after having a baby I would gain back almost to my delivery weight. It sucked! This being my 3rd kid I knew what my body was going to do. I knew that after the first month I had to really get my eating under control or else risk gaining weight. Actually I did gain weight in the 4 weeks after having Elyse. It was about 3 pounds but I still gained. 

What makes this time different than my other two postpartum recoveries is that yes I am eating "more" but I am eating the right kinds of foods and in the correct portions for a nursing mom. Do I still want to eat sweets, treats and other stuff. Sometimes but I don't crave it like I used to. It doesn't interest me anymore because I would rather fill my body with the foods that are good for me and Elyse giving her the best quality milk possible! 

Bottom line: it takes hard work and dedication to lose weight regardless what you are going through. There are no cheats or easier times to lose weight. You have to decide, commit and then just do it. And it really is possible for anyone to lose weight and feel better. Don't let the new year be your reason why you are waiting to lose weight. Start today so you are already in "losing weight mode" before everyone else. Because won't it will feel amazing to make "lose weight" not your #1 resolution in the new year?


Exercise: For the past 3 weeks I have been doing the 3 week yoga retreat. A basic introductory yoga program only available on Beachbody On Demand. It has really been great and allowed me to mentally get back into planning my workouts, adding in some core strength and seeing what works for me and my kids on workout times. 

Recovery: Recovery has going ok. I am still healing. I know this because if I do too much too fast, or even just tightening my core and holding it for so long, will make me start to bleed again. So yes...red heads to take longer to heal! 9 weeks, and I still bleed. It sucks but it is what it is.

Weight: Pre-pregnancy weight:237.7. Weight morning of birth: 264.8. Current weight December 1: 247.7. This past month I really focused hard on my nutrition. And it paid off. I was actually at 244.8 the day before Thanksgiving. But with the holiday and the weekend following, my system got all out of whack and a little confused. But I did lose weight and I DID lose inches as you can tell from my pictures. This is what it means to have a healthy lifestyle. Eat clean and enjoy the holiday then go back to eating clean! 

Next Months Goals: Monday, December 5 I start 21 DAY FIXperfect timing to go along with my exclusive support group, Health Up Your Holiday! I am still aiming to lose at least 1 pound a week making my total weight loss from November 1-January 1 8 pounds. (interested in joining the group? Send me an email or comment below!)

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, December 5, 2016

35 Years: My Journey To Now

Today is the day that I am now just 5 years away from the dreaded 4-0. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME! It seems so weird, so say I am 35. Yet here I am, 35 as of today. I actually remember thinking that 35 was SO OLD. I wanted to take a look back at how far I have come in these past few years in my journey, because even though I am growing older by just 1 year, I feel like I have gained so much about myself in just the past year about my fitness, health and overall life experiences!
2008 cruise just before I saw my doc and got the news that I was 240 pounds.

My whole fitness journey started in 2009. Yeah, before that point I had join the gym. Stopped going. Started exercising but stopped. It wasn't until 2009 when after we got back from a family trip that I went for a check up at my doctors and I weighed 240 pounds. That was the heaviest I had ever been and it was a huge wake up call for me. I scared the sh&t out of me honestly. I never wanted to be over weight. I saw what that was like for my sweet grandma as she aged and how difficult it was for her. I never wanted that for myself. For a few months I tried on my own to lose weight, and I did but I didn't know what the heck I was doing. 
Same weight yet, I look totally different. This is what exercising and becoming FIT does. Changes how your body is and carries it's weight. This is what being FIT is like!
I finally talked my hubs into letting me get a personal trainer with the understanding that if I stopped going that I would lose the membership. Well, I went. He kicked my butt. Called me out on my eating crap since I wasn't losing weight and pushed me more than I ever thought. After months of not losing weight I did a little experiment on myself. To prove to my trainer that it didn't matter what I ate, I wasn't going to lose weight. So I went on a controlled calorie intake diet by Slim Fast and followed it to a T. I continued to do 2 hours of cardio a day at the gym. I calculated that I was burning anywhere from 800-1000 calories just from cardio alone. I pushed myself so much and I was only eating 1200 calories. Needless to say, I dropped 20 pounds in just 2 months, but I was barely eating and busting my butt in the gym.

After a short time I started to re-introduce foods back into my diet, and I got pregnant with Mason. So I had to eat. Those 20 pounds I lost so quickly, I gained back with him within just a couple months of being pregnant, then gained another 35 pounds on top of that ending my pregnancy at 255. After 10 months of nursing and actually gaining weight not losing, I got the help from a nutritionist. And again I lost 40 pounds but it was healthy this time. I felt amazing. I didn't really have to exercise. The weight just fell off of me. And I got pregnant again. Then miscarried twice. I lost sight of my eating and my weight weight up again. Then after I started running, I got pregnant with Collin. I continued to run, but didn't really eat well with him. I trained and ran my half marathon when I was 29 weeks pregnant with him. And just 2 months after he was born I joined Beachbody to become a coach. 
Becoming a coach was really one of the best choices I ever made. It not only got me talking to more women, so I wasn't as lonely anymore, but I finally started to work on me. I started to really put to heart what my trainer had said so long ago. That nutrition was really the key and exercise helped to define you. Over the past 2 years. I have still had my ups and downs. After another tragic miscarriage last year that almost took my life. I got back into coaching after just taking a little break. But I had a new passion and desire to truly help people and not just reach my goals I had once set for myself. Now I am truly helping women every day. We are working together to find that balance. To make a healthy lifestyle their norm and to get out of the dieting yo-yo for good and it feels amazing. Yeah, I might still be 247 pounds but I honestly feel more healthy now than when I lost those first 40 pounds. I respect my body now. I love my body and who I am. I finally see the beauty in myself inside and out. This is what it is all about. This is why I do my blog. To help inspire. To help motivate. To help you want to add in healthy eating and exercise because it will help you feel better. Move better. Be a better mom. Have more patience with your children and to just over all take care of you on more than one level. You are worth it. We both are. Thank you so much for sticking with me this past year and for following along in my journey. It has truly been an amazing adventure. 

This coming year I have huge goals I want to accomplish and I can't wait to share them with you in an upcoming post! Be sure to check back often so you can get the motivation and support you need. If you are ready to take that next step and truly work on you but you need a little help along the way. Send me an EMAIL. Send me a message on FACEBOOK. Let's chat. Let's get you loving yourself and working on yourself to be the best you!
xoxo,

Becky

Friday, December 2, 2016

Homemade Burrito Bowls


We LOVE Chipotle's but HATE the price! Make your own takeout for half the price! Check out my recipe for Homemade Burrito Bowls that even Collin enjoys! ( I really want to say kids there but Mason, well he is so darn picky of an eater that yeah, he only tried the rice and a little bit of the chicken and that was still a fight! Anyone else have a pickey eater?)

Homemade Burrito Bowls

Ingredients:


4 chicken tenders, defrosted
Louisiana Cajan Blackened Seasoning (Walmart)
1 Can Black Beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup cooked brown rice (I precook my rice on Sunday so I just have to scoop and reheat!)
Cheddar cheese, shredded
Handful of spinach, roughly chopped

Directions: 

Heat grill pan on stovetop. 
Sprinkle chicken with seasoning on both sides and rub onto meat. 
Cook chicken until juices turn clear, about 6 minutes per side.
Heat the black beans on stove or in a microwave safe bowl
Re-heat 1 cup cooked brown rice in the microwave and season with the fajita seasoning

You can also add more veggies like saut├ęd bell peppers and onions. Or top with 1 tsp of guacamole. 

To plate: 
Brown rice on the bottom, spoon black beans on top of rice. Add chicken. Sprinkle with a little shredded cheddar and top with spinach.

And because I follow the container system with the 21 Day Fix here are the serving sizes I use. 1.5 greens of spinach, 1 yellow of rice, 1/2 yellow of black beans, 1 red of chicken, 1/2 blue cheese. ENJOY! 

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, December 1, 2016

Elyse Cheyenne: 2 Months


Elyse is 2 months. and boy howdy did this past month FLY BY! It is kind of bittersweet how fast this month went. As we are talking about if we are going to have any more kids. And if she is our last one...well, it's really sad and hard to think about! Anyhew, back to Elyse. Baby girl is getting into a sleep pattern. She is very particular about her sleeping time. She is a little beauty so it is doing her quite well in that department. (Be sure to view all the way to the bottom to see her outtakes!)

Her Stats: 
Weight: 10 pounds 1.2 ounces
Height: 22 1/4 inches tall


A Day in the life of Elyse:

  • 7:30pm - she starts to get cranky. Elyse wants to be asleep around this time but that is when the boys are getting ready to go to bed, so she waits until the boys are in their room and she gets to feed. 
  • 8:30- out cold. Generally she falls asleep on my chest but then I move her to her bassinet which she is sleeping in and napping in all the time now! It is so nice! 
  • 1am give or take an hour for midnight feed. 
  • 5am for morning feed.
  • 7am- forced up to take brother to the bus stop
  • 9am- another nap after big morning feed
  • 11:30am- MY favorite time of day...11:30. Mommy quiet time. Both her and Collin go down at the same time and it is AMAZING! This is new for us for about a week now where I don't have to be in the same room as her when she is napping. So I have been getting work done for coaching, making my lunch and EXERCISING! 
  • 2:50pm- Forced up again at to pick up brother from the bus stop again. 
  • 4pm- another nap after another feed.

 IT is so nice having a good schedule. She is feeding well before every nap time too!

I'm still exclusively nursing. No pumping. No bottles. So I am attached to her all the time it seems. Can't go long without seeing her or being around her and that is ok. I don't mind at all. She is all smiles now too. She loves to smile at us now! She thinks it is the funniest when I buzz my lips at her. That always gets a great grin!

So a little behind these monthly pictures of her. The way I got her to stop crying and look at me...I had to say "Pretty girl!" And mean it. She loves being told how pretty and beautiful she is. It even worked for Matt. He didn't believe me when I said that she loves it but when he did it and she just looked at him, softened her gaze at him he was impressed! She is a pretty girl! So blessed to be her momma!



Also beginning on MONDAY, December 5 I will be starting my Health Up The Holidays group. Join me as this is my first month back doing a strength training workout since I had her and really since I was about 32 weeks pregnant. I will be brand new basically. So if you want to be in a group that is for beginners and support for that. THIS IS THE GROUP TO JOIN! Let's get our healthy on before the holidays and already be rocking our goals out before January 1! Want to start right in with 21 Day Fix, which I personally think is the BEST beginning workout program out there...CLICK HERE to get your own copy and a month supply of Shakeology to help cut your cravings and to help you get even better results. When you order you will be added to my private Facebook group to get access to the tools you need plus support and daily accountability from me. Plus I will send you an email with your welcome guide to help you stay on track!

OUTTAKES: 



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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