BROWNIES…CHOCOLATE….and Columbus, Georgia?

Do I need to say more?

Last Friday I flew to Columbus, Georgia to visit my boyfriend Brendan while he attends IBOLC (Officer Training)–I’m so proud of him! It’s been about two months since he began (and since I dropped him off), and although I’m so excited to see him, traveling is can be one of the easiest ways to derail your goals. There are mounds of restaurants to try, social events, and catching up with friends, which is ultimately a date with my fork and knife. To make matters more EXCITING this trip isn’t only a week, it’s a month long! Once I leave Georgia I’ll be heading to Colorado for my girlfriend’s wedding (which I’m a bridesmaid–sparkly stilettos here I come) then I’ll drive up to a lake in Wyoming for a family camping trip…but that’s not all, I just received a call from my sister screaming: We are headed on a cruise to Mexico to celebrate her 21st birthday–Can I have a margarita on the rocks? And hold the salt, please. Anyone worried? Exhausted just thinking about it? NOT ME! I’m totally stoked. Most of you know that to succeed in our goals we need to make them a habit. The easiest way to accomplish this is to set a mundane routine, but since that isn’t an option–Constant change will be the core to my success. So with less than 14 week on the clock I’m going to embrace the challenge and get creative. Below contains my last few days of workouts, and remember you can always see what’s on my plate and in my tummy at My Fitness Pal:

(PROMISE, the Chocolate is coming!)

Saturday: I joined the local gym, Max Fitness, down the street for a week. Lifted Arms with Brendan…guess who is stronger? ūüėČ

Sunday: Went for a 15 minute run through a national park with Brendan and Koa (the pup!) Got the heart rate racing and Koa took a disgusting swim in a pond. Headed to the gym to work on my HUGE shoulders haha.

Monday: 5AM Leg workout then 1.6 mile interval sprints home. (Only ran fast because I kept replaying every horror movie in my head when the girl is abducted…makes a girl SPRINT)

Tuesday: Figured out I have Tendinitis in my forearm…no lifting for Moi (trying to rest it)–but have to review the Brazil Butt Lift Workout DVD set for Fit Bottomed Girls. Did the Bum Bum workout…crazy to think that dance moves (which probably came from the movie Rio–yes the bird movie) could make a girl sweat! Became an overachiever an hour later and walked at 15% incline for 45 minutes, while reading Laura Hillenbrand’s¬†Unbroken. That book is a MUST read! Finished off my gym stint with 20 minutes of posing…love the new transitions I was taught…and some random dancing. (That’s just what I do!)

Wednesday: Jogged 1.6 miles to the gym for a warm-up, then lifted Back–forearm still had some numbing pain. Exhausted and hungry–ate a homemade Apple protein cake (perfected recipe will be coming soon) and ran home in Georgia’s blazing sun.

Okay, OKAY! CHOCOLATE…and BROWNIES…

So lately I’ve been helping my whole family tighten up their “healthy” lifestyles and switch it up a bit. My parents are¬†almost on board with a diet transformation (they are going to start to eat like me, YIPEE!), and have agreed to go full throttle ahead once we get home from our vacation. My mom’s major concern: “I need to have something sweet with my afternoon tea.” So taking on the challenge…and since most of the protein packed brownie recipes don’t have the macronutrient ratio I like, I created my own!

Ingredients:

1 Cup of Oat Flour (Can be made by grinding up oats)

3 scoops of Vanilla Protein Powder

3 TBSP of Unsweetened Cocoa

1/2 Cup of Truvia

1 TSP of Baking Powder

Optional: 1 TSP of Cinnamon- I love cinnamon in everything I eat!

1 Cup of Non-fat Plain Greek Yogurt

3 Egg Whites

You’ll need Non-stick spray and 8×8 pan.

Directions:

1. Pre-heat oven to 350.

2. Mix dry ingredients (Oat Flour, Protein Powder, Cocoa, Truvia, Baking Powder, Cinnamon) in a large bowl. Stir!

3. Slowly add in Greek Yogurt then Egg Whites. Mix well.

4. Spray pan with non-stick cooking spray. Pour mixture into pan, then put into oven for 25 minutes. Watch carefully–Everyone likes a different consistency, and I like when my brownies are still pretty gooey!

5. When cooled, split the pan of brownies into 8 pieces. (Yes, you’re portion is going to be huge!)

The Damages:

Calories per Square: 110 Calories  Fat: 2g  Carbs: 10g  Protein: 15g  Sodium: 72mg

…Yes…this is how I’m getting ready for my competition!

Enjoy ūüôā

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A Numbers Game

At the end of the day part of this journey is solely a numbers game. How many calories I took in, how many calories I burned, how many were¬†delicious¬†fats, starchy carbs, muscle-building protein, and how many I’d like to pretend I never had. Yes, I have those days too! To help keep on track I use a food tracking app on my smartphone called MyFitnessPal. There are many calorie counting apps out there, but what I like about this app in particular is that it brings together calorie tracking with your own personal support group. You can add friends and cheer them on as you both reach your own health and fitness goals. Now, obviously being a supportive friend is important, but lets just take a second and talk about accountability! Hey, hey, we all need to stay accountable and when you know your best friend is taking a look at what you put in your mouth each day, you may want to take a step away from that extra cookie. (And if you’re in the middle of eating that cookie right now…just put it down…yes, PUT THE COOKIE DOWN–I promise, you’ll thank me later!) Accountability is the key to success, but more important is the accountability to yourself. We all want to succeed and apps like these make it easier to stay on track and stay motivated. Although I am a big promoter of the smartphone food trackers, you don’t need an iPhone, Blackberry, or Droid to help you reach your goals. You can actually access these same sites on the internet…and “old” case scenario, you can take a pen and paper and jot it all down like we did in the 1980s (obviously, I asked my mom).

To help me stay accountable and to make my journey as transparent as possible you can¬†follow my diet at:http://www.myfitnesspal.com/food/diary/raquelguss. I know with a support group that includes each one of you,¬†I’ll work extra hard to set a good example and not have many (or hopefully any) slip ups. To start, I won’t even buy the cookies!

Please feel free to follow me, or even join me at http://www.myfitnesspal.com. We can motivate each other while we reach both of our goals!

If you have any healthy recipes that you’d like to share please pass them along. I love trying new things, and I’m sure everyone would like a healthy recipe to add to their¬†repertoire! If I can’t incorporate the recipe into my current diet, be sure that I’ll be diving into it as soon as my competition is over.

103 days and counting…

Here we go AGAIN!

Here are some pictures from my last competition. This journey is all about learning from your past and making better choices for the future. I can’t wait for you to see my transformation from my last competition to this one!

XO,

RG