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DIY Handsoap and Body Wash Using Castile Soap

In a previous post, I shared with you all how most all commercial home cleaning and personal care products are toxic to our bodies and can cause just as much damage to our health as eating junk food daily.

Companies are allowed to use almost ANY ingredient they wish in their products. The governent doesn’t review the safety of products before they are sold. This should definitely concern you in light of the fact that our skin is the largest organ in our body and can absorb up to 60% of what we put on it. That’s a lot..especially when you think about how often we put these products on our skin (make-up, body washes, hand soap, lotions, sprays/perfumes, deoderant, etc.) For most people these are applied daily.

If you would like to know more about what ingredients are in your personal care and home cleaning products, you can visit www.ewg.org. They launched what’s called Skin Deep in 2004 which consists of a database of tons of products and their ingredients with ratings of the product and its individual ingredients safety. I think you would be surprised if you went and searched all of the common products you use on a daily basis.

In the world we live in today, it’s almost impossible to eliminate all toxins from our lives, but the more we can limit them, the less stress we will be putting on our body and the healthier we will be.

Now again, don’t read this and think you have to go remove all commercial cleaning and beauty products from your home at one time. Small changes over a longer period of time is more realistic for most people. Just start with one thing and when you’re ready move on to the next. Every little change you make towards a healthier cleaner lifestyle will make a difference in the long run.

Today I’m sharing with you all a handsoap and body wash recipe that are both SO SIMPLE..and extremely budget friendly.

The first recipe is a natural handsoap that requires only 2 ingredients.

 

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In this picture above I used a typical handsoap dispenser, but when I make this again I will be purchasing a foam hand soap dispenser. The consistensy of this soap is very liquidy and not nearly as thick as most commercial hand soaps. Once you lather the soap in your hands it becomes nice and soapy, but with this type of dispenser its hard to keep it all in your hands without most of it just dripping off your hands. I am unaware of where to find a foam dispenser in Paris, Texas but you can order them cheap online through amazon.  So, once you have your soap dispenser, you will then need only two more things

  • Castile Soap (You can find this at most health food stores, but I found that it was much cheaper to order off of Amazon or Vitacost. You can purchase any scent you like, or purchase one that is unscented and add in whatever essential oil you like to make it smell good.)
  • Water

In about a 1:10 ratio of soap to water, fill your soap dispenser, shake well and you are DONE! How easy is that? When you purchase a large bottle of castile soap like the one pictured above, it will last you forever if you’re just using it to make hand soaps. Castille Soap has no toxic ingredients in it and is made from pure oils so is perfectly healthy for your skin and will leave it feeling nice and smooth. There are good natural personal care brands out there like Meyer’s, which I also love, but if you can take the time to make this it will be much cheaper in the long run! It might seem pricier up front, but it will last you awhile.

The second recipe I’m sharing with you all is a simple body wash using only a couple more ingredients with slightly different ratios.

 

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First, you will again need to purchase a dispenser that you would like to use in the shower. Ideally it would be in a glass container, but that just scares me in the shower. I’m too clumsy and would probably drop it and break it. I bought the dispenser pictured above at Hobby Lobby for like $2 I believe. I probably will buy a bigger bottle next time I make this because I feel like I went through it too fast. For the body wash you will need:

  • 1 part castile soap
  • 1 part water
  • 1 part organic coconut oil (adding coconut oil will provide extra natural moisturizing benefits as well as antimicrobial and disinfectant properties)
  • 5-10 drops lavender oil (Not only does lavender smell amazing, but it is known to have natural calming effects which would make this a great body wash to use to help you wind down at night either in the shower or in a nice relaxing bath)

Make sure to melt the coconut oil before mixing all of this together in a bowl, then pour into your soap dispenser. Make sure to shake it well before every use. It will spread further over your body if you use a washcloth or sponge.

If you prefer a body scrub to a more liquid body wash, check out this easy DIY coconut lime sugar scrub.

Enjoy!!

This Week’s Meals: 2/22-26

We are back home from a busy family filled weekend and I’ve got a whole other week of meals for you below and they are all whole30 approved!! It consists of everything that I ate last week for lunches and dinner’s Monday through Friday.

But first, I have to share with you all the loving that went on this weekend. We know how fast Harper is going to grow up so we are trying to take advantage of every opportunity we have to go see family. This weekend was spent with Luke’s Memaw and parents but also included a Face Time to my parents because we couldn’t leave them out!

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Harper Anne getting some lovin’ from her great grandma aka. “Mema”

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All smiles sittin’ on “Pops” lap enjoying a beautiful Sunday afternoon! We’ve been told they look like twins but I think it might just be the bald head..

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“Sher Bear” getting some cuddles as Harper falls asleep. She officially has found her thumb.

Sweet times.

Ok, now for what I ate last week. I hope you can use this for some meal prepping inspiration in your own kitchen this week (grab my FREE tips on meal prepping handout).  If I had to pick a favorite recipe from this week’s line up, it would definitely be the paleo shepherds pie. This was a new recipe that I tried the week before and it is so good! The reaction I got from my husband was “Dang, you seriously could make this EVERY week!”

My husband and I started a strict nutrition cleanse two weeks ago just to help ourselves get back on track and be more disciplined in what we are eating after the last crazy couple of months of figuring out this whole parenting thing. I by no means am restricting myself on how much I am eating since I am nursing, just getting rid of the junk. Even if I wasn’t nursing, I never restrict myself on how much I am eating. If I’m hungry, I eat. Period. When you eat good clean balanced meals and snacks throughout the day, your body tells you when you are hungry and when you are full and you should listen to those cues. Counting calories is just depressing and not realistic to do every single day, just eat real food people!!

 

Monday

Lunch: Paleo Tacos with a side of sauteed zucchini and squash

*I had a picture of this but then I got a new phone and it just seemed like too much work to transfer the pics over just for this blog. Sorry. They looked similar to this:

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I used our deer meat for the taco meat and this simple recipe for the seasoning:

  • 1 T. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper

I served my tacos in large romaine letuce leaves, and topped them with salsa (look for no sugar in ingredients for whole30) and avocado slices.

This makes for a super simple dinner or lunch if you cook all your meat at the beginning of the week! You could add whatever fixings you like.

Dinner: Paleo Shepherds Pie 

*I had a picture of this too, but of course it was also on my old phone. Click on the link to grab the recipe and see a pic of it. Her pic is better than mine was anyways! This was my favorite new recipe this week!!

Tuesday

Lunch: Leftover Tacos and sauteed veggies

Dinner: Leftover Paleo Shepherds Pie

*I’m a big fag of leftovers. Not having to cook and do dishes every night is amazing. If your life is busy and you have lots of stuff going on in the evenings, then you probably should get used to making large batches of food and eating leftovers. It’s one of the most convenient ways to eat healthy throughout the week.

Wednesday

Lunch: Paleo Tuna Salad with a side of baby carrots

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For the tuna salad, mix all of this together and store in the fridge for up to a week to make 4 servings:

  • 2, 5 oz. cans of tuna (I buy Wild Planet wild caught tuna)
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 4 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup red onion, chopped
  • black pepper/salt to taste
  • 2 T. olive oil

Dinner: More Leftover Shepherds Pie

*I doubled this recipe to make it last three meals (6 servings) for just two of us. We also eat pretty large portions so it might last longer for others.

Thursday

Lunch: Leftover tuna salad with a side of baby carrots

Dinner: Paleo Slow Cooker Chili

*This is an old favorite that I make regularly throughout the fall/winter months. It typically lasts 3-4 meals (6-8 servings) for the two of us.

Friday

Lunch: Leftover tuna salad with a side of baby carrots

Dinner: Pork Loin Roast with roasted potatoes and carrots, green beans and some fresh slices of strawberries, grapes and bananas for dessert

*We were at Luke’s “Mema’s” house Friday night so I don’t have a recipe for the Pork Loin Roast. She was so sweet to accomodate to our nutritional needs. It was perfect.

Now pick one or a couple of these recipes and get to cookin’ this week!!!

DIY Coconut Lime Sugar Scrub

When it comes to taking good care of our health it doesn’t just stop at exercising and eating good clean high quality foods these days. So many personal care products are full of synthetic chemicals and toxins that harm our health as well.

Our skin is our largest organ and is capable of absorbing 60% of what we put on it so you better believe what you put on your skin will contribute to your overall health.

“Some of the most dangerous and toxic chemicals found in personal care products are also some of the most common ingredients in products you may be using today.” -Katheryn Seppamaki | functionaldiagnosticnutrtion.com

Now I’ll admit, it can be quite overwhelming when people are telling you you need to change your diet, start exercising, and then on top of that you even need to swap out pretty much all your home and beauty products you have been using for probably your whole life..

For some people, maybe that’s you, the information overload can be enough to paralyze you and consequently cause you to not make any change at all.

Start slow if all this is new to you..small changes over time will eventually lead to a complete lifestyle change. Don’t try and tackle more than you can handle and contribute to even more stress in your life that you don’t need. When it comes to swapping out home and beauty products just do one at a time and eventually before you know it your home and beauty products will be toxin/chemical free!

With that being said, this is one of my favorite new recipes I have been using to make a natural body scrub. It is SO SIMPLE and you most likely have all the ingredients in your kitchen already!

The dangerous part about this recipe is that it is edible and includes sugar, so you technically could eat it. I would recommend not even trying it because once you do, you will find yourself using it as a snack in the shower instead of a body scrub..yes I am guilty of this lol!! The good news though is because it is made of all edible ingredients you know it is perfectly healthy for your skin and free of any nasty chemicals.

This natural body scrub recipe is made up of only 3 simple ingredients:

Coconut Oil: a natural chemical free moisturizer with disinfectant and antimicrobial properties. It is also rich in  many proteins that keep the skin healthy and rejuvenated.

Ever since I have started using coconut oil on my skin my skin has never felt so soft and smooth.

Sugar: Just simple refined white sugar acts as a natural exfoliant when combined with the coconut oil that will successfully scrape off excess dead skin as well as get rid of unwanted substances that might be clogging your pores. You can choose more coarse sugars that are less refined if you want a rougher scrub.

Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice: The fresh squeezed lime juice will also help to scrub out dead cells and most of all in combination with the coconut oil it simply smells amazing! It’s so refreshing and will make you wish you were at a beach drinking a pina colada.

You could also use lime essential oil as well for this recipe.

If you’re ready to swap out your toxin/chemical filled body scrubs for this natural homemade scrub I don’t think you will be disappointed. It would also make for an easy homemade gift!

Now due to the nature of the saturated fat in the coconut oil it will harden in colder temperatures so if you are using this in the winter time just run the jar under a little bit of hot water and it will soften up pretty quickly. You also can just scrape some out with your hand and it will soften automatically in the warmth of your hands.

Enjoy!

Coconut Lime Sugar Scrub

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Ingredients

  • 1 part coconut oil
  • 2 parts sugar (just plain white refined works great or you can choose a different less refined sugar depending on the consistency you want the scrub to be)
  • juice of fresh squeezed lime (there isn’t an art here, just squeeze enough in until it smells like you would like it to)
  • 1 glass jar

Directions

  1. Mix all together in a mixing bowl until well combined and then scoop into your desired glass container.
  2. Depending on the temperature, you may need to warm the coconut oil up just slightly to a consistentcy that will mix easily.

This Week’s Meals 2/14/16

Here is another week’s worth of what we ate at the Finch house for lunches and dinner’s!

This was actually what we ate all last week but I never got around to writing it until now. I usually only post lunches and dinner’s because breakfast is typically the same every morning at our house. If you would like to see what we usually eat for breakfast you can check out my breakast edition post.

Make sure to read all the way to the end of this post though because I have included a delicious grain free waffle recipe with a chocolate coconut cream sauce you won’t want to miss!! I tried this out on Saturday as a special treat for us to switch it up and ..oh my word!!!

Monday

Lunch: Avocado Chicken Salad with a side of baby carrots

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Photo Credit: becomingbetty.blogspot.com

Dinner: Spaghetti and a side salad from Capizzi’s (local restaurant)

*Young Life club started back up last Monday and we are always provided a free meal by our committee. I usually always eat this even though it’s typically a not so healthy meal because they go out of their way to provide it for us. If this were an everynight thing then that would be a different story. Once a week I am ok with. Plus I don’t have to cook or clean dishes that night!*

Tuesday

Lunch: Leftover Avocdao Chicken Salad

Dinner: Grass-Fed Beef Burger Salad with Baked Sweet Potato Fries

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Salad Incudes: Spinach, topped with grass-fed beef burger patties, tomato slices, sauteed onions, bell peppers and mushrooms and Stubb’s BBQ sauce

Wednesday

Lunch: Citrusy Shaved Zucchini and Sardine Salad

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I know I know..sardines?!! Most of you probably can’t stand even the thought of eating these, but if you can learn to like them they are so good for you. They are an excellent non-dairy source of calcium as well as omega 3 fatty acids. I buy Wild Planet wild caught sardines from Kroger as they are one of the highest qualities. I used a vegetable spiralizer to make my zucchini into noodles for this recipe. It was so easy to put together for a quick lunch. I’m sure you could top it with any fish you like and it would still be good.

Dinner: Leftover Grass-Fed Burger Salad with Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Thursday

Lunch: Citrusy Shaved Zucchini and Sardine Salad

Dinner: Zuppa Tuscana

I don’t have a picture or a link for this one..I’m sorry! I found this recipe off of the instagram account @whole30recipes and it is a delicious and easy hearty soup that’s great to make ahead to last you throughout the week for lunch or dinner. Here is how to make it..

Ingredients: 1-2 pound grass-fed ground beef, 1-2 tsp crushed red peppers, 1 large white onion, diced, 2 tsp. minced garlic, 32 oz. broth or 4 cups, 1/2 cup coconut milk, 3 large potatoes thinly sliced, 1/2 bunch of kale chopped

Directions: Saute the beef with red pepper flakes. In a large pot, saute the onion, and garlic until soft in some olive oil or butter. Add in broth and bring to a boil. Add in the potatoes and bring down to a simmer for about 30 minutes or until the potatoes are soft. Add in the beef, kale and coconut milk and serve!

Friday

Lunch: Leftover Citrusy Shaved Zucchini and Sardine Salad

Dinner: Steak, Broccoli and Mashed Potatoes from Chilis ..plus I snacked on everyone elses appetizers

*We went out to eat for a friend’s birthday and had a great time! Sometimes fellowship with friends trumps good high quality clean food. Laughter and good quality friendships are just as important for your overall health. Don’t let that be an excuse to eat out every single meal though!! Balance people.*

Saturday

Breakfast: Grain Free Waffles with Chocolate Coconut Cream Sauce and Sauteed Bananas

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For the sauteed bananas: just slice up your bananas and toss them in some coconut oil over medium heat in a skillet until they are nice and warm then serve on top of your waffles!

This was like eating dessert for breakfast!! I definitely wouldn’t recommend eating this everyday, but for a special treat on the weekened this was amazing and much healthier than refined white flour waffles topped with high fructose corn syrup. You could always top the waffles with any topping that you like. Fresh fruit and almond butter is another one of my favorites!

Make sure to grab my FREE meal prepping tips handout over here if you haven’t yet to help you plan ahead and make life easier in the kitchen throughout the week! Hope you all have a great week! Let me know if you try any recipes on here and what you think 🙂

This Week’s Workouts + Green Apple Protein Smoothie

I’m getting to write this week’s post as I’m sitting in the car currently driving to Austin, Texas where I’ll be dropping my husband off for a bachelor party and I then will continue on to go see family in Fredericksburg!

The drive is long, but it’s not too bad when this is my view the whole time..

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She is so excited to see her grandparents, great grandparents and aunt and uncle and show them how much she’s grown! In fact she’s so excited she crapped herself and almost ruined her cute outfit. Thank goodness for the white onsie underneath her little cardigan that we just took off and threw away. We’re all clean now and will try to contain the excitement the rest of the way.

So, I won’t be getting a workout in today since we are on the road pretty much all day, but here’s what I did the rest of the week.

Monday

I took the workout that was posted at our local Crossfit Paris Texas gym and changed it up just slightly so that I could do it at the high school track since it was so pretty outside that day.

Reps of 50-40-30-20-10 of air squats and sit-ups followed by a 400 meter run around the track after every round while pushing my girl in the stroller.

I didn’t time it but I think it took me around 20-25 minutes.

Tuesday

I did a short mile walk with Harper in a body carrier just to get outside and get some fresh air. I think it was a little too windy though because she has been a little congested ever since. I’m sorry girlfriend!! We will wait until it gets a little warmer to do that again.

Wednesday

Tabatas of the following exercises with a 2 minute rest between each round. (Tabatas: 8 rounds of 20 seconds of work followed by a 10 second rest. So each tabata is 4 minutes total. Your score for each tabata is the least amount of reps you ended up with in a single round at the end of the 8 rounds. For example if you started out with 15 squats and on the last round you only got 10, your score is 10. It’s a great workout to redo once a month or so to test your muscular endurance)

1. Air squats-my score was 16

2. Sit-ups-my score was 11

3. Push-ups-my score was 6 touching chest to the ground every time

4. Alternating rounds of strict pull-ups and hanging knee raises-my score was 2 strict pull-ups and 15 knee raises

*This is one of the quickest ways to get an awesome workout in. You can search Tabata music on youtube and find tons of great timers to use. To modify these you can always alternate between two exercises within the 8 rounds until you feel ready to do one movement for all 8 rounds or, to modify even more you could do four different exercises. Just try and pick exercises that will hit different muscle groups.

Thursday

I made this one up on the fly once I got Harper down for an afternoon nap and it kicked my butt.

Reps of 21-15-9 of sumo deadlift high pulls (I used a 55# kettlebell) and burpees followed by 100 double unders after each round.

*Do 21 of each then 100 du’s, 15 of each then 100 du’s etc..

I didn’t time myself on this one but it shouldn’t take you longer than 10-15 minutes..

I counted it a success that I didn’t pee myself during the double unders. I was told this would happen after I had kids..I don’t hope to join that club.

With all the sunny weather we’ve had it’s put me in the mood for smoothies again. Here is one I tried this week after one of my workouts I think you might like.

Green Apple Protein Smoothie, serves 2

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Hope you all have a great weekend!!

 

This Week’s Meals + FREE handout for Tips on Meal Prepping

Ok, Harper is napping so let’s see if I can get this blog done and let you guys know what I ate this week!!

By the way, last week I shared with you guys what I have been doing for workouts post partum plus a new recipe I tried. Go grab that here if you missed that.

I finally have a little more of a routine now 8 weeks into this whole mom thing to where I am back to getting some time to meal prep for the week. I’ve made Monday my grocery day and Tuesday is typically my meal prep day. This is one of the best things I started doing that helps Luke and I eat healthy throughout the week. If you don’t take time to meal prep it will be one of the biggest contributors to you making poor eating choices throughout the week, because if you haven’t noticed, eating healthy almost always involves cooking your food. If it’s not prepared ahead of time, or at least prepped half way to where it cuts your cooking time, then most likely you will find yourself starving and grabbing whatever is most convenient or snacking way more than necessary because you don’t have the patience to wait another 30 minutes to cook your food.

I started posting what we eat throughout the week awhile back but obviously life got crazy and I haven’t posted in awhile. You can go check out all my other weekly meals here.

Because I love you guys so much I’ve put together a handout that walks you through exactly what I do each week when I am planning our meals. Just click the link below and it’s yours free!

Tips on Meal Prepping

The only way I get any meal prepping done lately is with the baby carrier. I may get some done while she is napping, but usually she will wake up before I am finished so then she just gets to join me

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Is that not the cutest little bald head you ever did see? I promise she can breathe and isn’t smashed against my chest. She loves it in this thing and momma can get things done!

Alright, so what did we eat this week?

So like I said earlier, Monday’s are usually my grocery day so the beginning of the week starts out with leftovers usually or sometimes just eating out if we ran out of food.

Monday

Lunch: Apple Cranberry Walnut Chicken Salad from Braum’s

I had a friend come over for lunch that day and I didn’t have enough food to make both of us something so she brought us over a salad. Obviously not the highest quality of food here, but ya know it’s actually a pretty decent salad if you are out and need something healthier and convenient. It’s not iceburge lettuce either it’s actually real green leaf lettuce so I think I actually got some good nutrients out of that.

Dinner: Leftover Paleo Spaghetti with a side salad

This is one of my go to recipes. So easy and makes for great leftovers! Our side salad was simple and consisted of spinach, chopped carrots and tomatoes drizzled with olive oil and fresh squeezed lemon juice.

Tuesday

Lunch: Leftover Paleo Spaghetti with a side salad

Dinner: Steak, Asaparagus and french fries from Chili’s

It was Luke’s birthday so we ordered chili’s to go and had a nice family night in without having to cook or clean any dishes! I don’t eat 100% clean all the time and I won’t ever lie to you all about that. I make it a point to keep clean healthy food in the house and eat at home a majority of the time and not stress about the rest. That’s just what works for us! Oh, and we watched the Batchelor. Don’t let him fool you and tell you he doesn’t love watching it was much as I do!!!

Wednesday

Lunch: Homemade Taco Soup made by Luke’s Aunt

Luke’s grandparents came in so we went out and ate at his aunt’s house for lunch that day. Not sure how she made it but it tasted good!

Dinner: Quinoa Fried Rice

This is an old recipe I found and is very filling! You really can make it however you like as far as what vegetables you add to it. I actually added in a pound of cooked ground venison for some extra protein this time.

Thursday

Lunch: Baked wild caught salmon over quinoa topped with pico de gallo, side of sauteed zucchini and squash in olive oil

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I baked enough salmon and cooked enough quinoa to last us a couple of lunches. To save time I also chopped all the zucchini/squash up ahead of time as well so I just had to throw it in the skillet when i was ready to eat and warm everything else back up. Easy and healthy!!

Dinner: Chicken Avocado Soup

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This was really good! It was not an original recipe but you can grab the recipe by clicking on the link attached above!

If you want the healthiest chicken around with the best balance of omega 3 to omega 6 fatty acids you need to check out Slanker’s Grass Fed Meats! If you’ve never ordered from them before, make sure and let them know that Erin Finch referred you if you are ordering by phone and you can get $5 off your first order! If you order online, I would greatly appreciate you ordering through my link below as I do get a small commission for referrals! I buy mostly beef from them because it is more affordable but they sell a wide variety of products if you haven’t checked them out before! I’ve been ordering meat from them for over a year now and love all their products. They deliver locally now too for a small fee which is super convenient.

Order Slanker’s Grass Fed Meat Here!!

Feel free to ask me about their products before you buy if you’re unsure because I’ve tried a lot of their products!

Okay so onto Friday’s meals..

Friday

Lunch: leftover salmon, quinoa and zucchini/squash

Dinner: leftover chicken avocado soup

I like to keep it simple. Leftovers is the way to go to limit time in the kitchen when you don’t have a lot of it!

Let me know if you try any of my recipes and like them!!

 

This Week’s Workouts + Favorite Recipe I Ate This Week

So I haven’t posted a blog in literally FOREVER! Life has been crazy…in case you didn’t know I am now a MOM!!!

I won’t be doing any work for awhile until I feel like I am ready. I really have no set time  frame for how long I want to take time off. The plan is to have no plan and just enjoy being a mom to Ms. Harper Anne Finch for awhile. It’s not very easy for me to not have a plan because I am naturally a planner at heart, but I think this is  exactly what I need in this season of life as I transition into motherhood.  I am so greatful that I even have the opportunity to choose to do this as I know not every mother gets this option.

So for now, my days are filled with lots of snuggles, diaper changes, laundry, feedings, more feedings, more diaper changes, the occassional cry fit, naps, etc.

The lack of good quality sleep I am getting is enough to make me go crazy some nights, but when I wake up and see this cute face how can I even be mad???

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Seroiusly!! I may be biased but she is SO cute i could die!! It’s a good thing babie’s are so dang adorable! They can drive you insane and then make you feel like you couldn’t love anything more all at the same time.

So in the transition of just being mom for awhile and deciding when I want to take on any work again, I have made it my goal to at least write one blog a week to stay in touch with you guys on what I am doing post partum to stay healthy and fit. I will be trying to do this every Friday, but as a mom I literally never know what my day will look like as much as I try and plan it.

Anyways, I thought I would start by sharing with you guys what my workouts have looked like post baby. Before I had Harper, I worked out at our local Crossfit gym 4-5 times a week which included lots of heavy lifting and more. Since I’ve had Harper, I decided to not go right back up to the gym because, knowing my competitive self, I would probably jump back into things too quickly and hurt myself, so I have decided to workout at home and make up my own workouts for awhile. Plus, I really never know when/if I’ll get to workout in a day anyways.. so it’s more convenient at the moment to do a quick workout wherever I can fit it in.

I took 3 weeks off from when I had Harper and did no working out at all. I think I maybe walked to the mailbox a couple of times just to get outside and actually got dressed and blow dried my hair for the day (that is seriously a workout right after you have had a baby). Other than that I was just in survival mode and trying to get as much rest and sleep as possible.

At the end of three weeks I finally had an itch to work out again. Since then I’ve made it my goal to fit in at least three interval/crossfit type at home workouts in a week and to walk as often as possible with my girl. The walking is a win win for me. For one, it is a guarantee that I can get Harper to sleep. She passes out the second I start strollng her, it is amazing, and I get some fresh air and peace and quite for however long I decide to walk. If it’s been a hard day/night I tend to walk longer so she will sleep longer and I get more peace and quite lol. If I’m lucky, she will keep sleeping when I stroll her inside and I like to fit in my workout right when I get home.

So here is what my workouts looked like this past week. Feel free to try these at home yourself and modify how you need to. Sorry.. I didn’t video or take pics of any of the movements so if you aren’t sure what something is I’m sure you tube or google can help you out.

Sunday

15 minute EMOM (Every minute on the minute)

  • Minute 1: 30 second handstand hold against the wall (you could do a plank to modify)
  • Minute 2: 10 single kettlebell push press with 55# kettle bell (you could do push-ups if you don’t have a kettle bell)
  • Minute 3: 3 strict pull-ups (do like 20 cobras or 10 dumbell rows if you don’t have something to do pull-ups on or can’t do them. It will work your back muscles which is the goal here)

I did 2 rounds of this and then Harper got super fussy and was crying so I decided to add in one extra round where I held her and did squats for a minute. It calmed her down and it kept her content right up until I would finish a round and I would have to pick her up again lol. So if you’re a mom, do what you got to do to get your workout in and keep baby happy at the same time!

After I finished the EMOM, I rested and put Harper down for a nap. I then did 150 squats for time. I did it in 3:58. Holy crap my legs were so sore the next 3 days.

Tuesday

45 minute walk with my girl..

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+ 15 minute AMRAP (As many reps as possible in 15 minutes)

  • 3 strict pull-ups
  • 10 push-ups
  • 15 lunges
  • 20 sit-ups

I did 6 rounds plus 3 more pull-ups

Thursday

10 minute AMRAP

  • Following a ladder of increasing reps of 3-6-9-12 as far as you can go in 10 minutes of kettlebell goblet squats, kettlebell deadlifts and burpees ( I used 55# kettle bell and got through the round of 15 + 8 more squats)

Friday

We will be going country dancing tonight for my husbands birthday!!! I’m  really excited and anxious at the same time. The first night I met Luke we went dancing, so it is one of our favorite things to do together, but it’s also the first time I’m leaving Harper with a baby sitter that is not family. If you want a great calf workout..go country dancing. Seriously.

Lots of you are always asking what protein do I recommend. Currently, I use Vital Proteins and love it. I usually just mix it with some almond milk after my workouts or for an afternoon snack. It has no flavor so you can mix it in anything really. You can go check out their website for more info on the quality/benefits of using their product. I highly recommend it though! I wrote a blog on why I love it so much in the past. You can go check that out here.

Anyways, if you do decide you want to order some I do earn a small affiliate commission from anyone who orders through my link here.

I don’t ever recommend anything that I don’t use myself or believe in, so I would greatly appreciate you ordering through my link in support of this blog!

Ok, so now onto my favorite new recipe I tried this week!

Butternut Squash Soup

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Doesn’t that just look cozy? I love making soups in the wintertime. They are a great make ahead meal that’s easy to re heat and eat on all week.

This is not an original recipe. You can get the recipe here. I used two granny smith apples instead of just 1.

Another one of my goals on top of blogging once a week is to try one new recipe a week. This helps keep things interesting and to not get bored of eating the same thing over and over. Eating healthy gets really boring if you eat the same thing all the time. Some people can do it, but I can’t. I have to change things up. This soup is great paired with a big salad, or a wrap (I love using Ezekiel brand sprouted grain wraps). This paired with a wrap has been my lunch all week. Yumm.

If little MIss Harper naps good next Friday giving me enough time to write another blog post, I’ll be posting again on what we ate for dinner all week!! Stay tuned..

Vital Proteins Tropical Mango Banana Smoothie

So awhile back , I went to PaleoFx in Austin, which is a HUGE conference that’s hosted every year that brings in leading nutritionists, authors, and educators to discuss the Paleo movement. Aside from all the awesome information that is shared at the conference, the best part about it is all the awesome vendors that are there!! Free samples galore and a chance to learn about a ton of awesome new products that are out there that I can share with you all!!

I think a lot of my readers might be interested in this one particular product I am about to share with you all. I get asked all the time..

“What kind of protein do you use or recommend?”

I am very particular about the brands of protein I recommend to people because frankly most of the stuff sold in stores is a bunch of garbage and not worth your money. I truly believe you should get most of your protein from whole foods like grass-fed meats and wild caught fish, but of course there are times when protein powders are just more convenient and sometimes necessary for those who train at higher levels and intensity. Another great example to use protein powders would be people who temporarily can’t chew lots of food due to surgery or other reasons. This is a great way to get protein in your diet that’s easy to swallow.

It’s not easy to find good quality proteins that taste good too, but at PaleoFx I stumbled upon this awesome product that does!!  The brand is called Vital Proteins and the specific product that I have tried and use is their Collagen Peptides.

 

They have many other fabulous products, but I have not personally tried them. This one I can say with confidence tastes great and has wonderful health benefits as well.

“Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and is a key constituent of all connective tissues.” -Vital Proteins

Also taken from their website are some benefits and highlights of vital proteins collagen peptides:

Collagen Peptides Benefits:

  • Promotes youthful skin, healthier hair, and stronger nails
  • Helps keep bones healthy and strong
  • Supports joint health
  • Contributes to a balanced diet and helps maintain weight
  • Supports healthy inflammation response due to overexercise
  • Natural glycine improves sleep quality.

Collagen Peptides Highlights:

  • Pasture Raised
  • Kosher
  • Naturally Minimally Processed
  • No Additives or Preservatives
  • Cold Water Soluble
  • Great for mixing into a quick drink with juice, milk, or water
  • Easily mixed into foods such as oatmeal, pasta sauce, or smoothies
  • Light molecular weight is highly digestible

Collagen used to be a major part of traditional diets, however as modern processed foods have taken over the standard American diet, it has slowly been pushed off of many peoples plates.

There are natural ways to get collagen into your diet such as homemade bone broths made from the bones of healthy animals, but I have found that most people realistically will not take the time to make this on a regular basis. I have grown to love homemade bone broths, especially in the winter times when it is cold. It is delicious to sip on like a cup of coffee, but in the summer time I prefer to make a cold refreshing smoothie and add vital proteins collagen peptides to it!

Each serving of Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides provides 18 grams of protein with all the essential amino acids that are identical to the proteins found in skin, nails, hair, bones, joints, and cartilage making this product great for preventing skin aging, supporting joint and bone health as well as a lean body and athletic performance.

For even more info on this product, go here –> Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides !

You can add Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides to any smoothie you like, your coffee in the morning, hot tea and even add it to soups, sauces, and other recipes. My personal favorite way to use it is in a fruit smoothie. The smoothie below has been my go to this summer. Go try it!!

 Tropical Mango Banana Smoothie, with Vital Proteins

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Ingredients

Natural Post Workout Electrolyte Drink

It’s that time of year where when I work out I feel like I just jumped in a pool by the end of my workout. Heck, I can walk out of my house and not even workout and feel like that some days, leaving me wondering why I even bother to shower lol.

Because the Texas summer humidity and heat makes me sweat so much more I always make sure I am staying hydrated, even more so now that I am pregnant! I make sure to drink tons of water throughout the day, but after workouts I like to refuel with this awesome natural electrolyte drink via The Performance Paleo Cookbook. You lose a lot more than just water when you sweat. You lose important electrolytes like potassium and sodium that are needed for proper muscle and nerve function.

This recipe is so delicious and the perfect refreshing flavor during the summer! It kind of tastes like a Pina Colada! The coconut water used in this recipe is an excellent source of potassium, but is lacking in essential sodium to refuel the muscles. That’s why you will see sea salt as one of the ingredients listed below to make up for that. The pineapple juice adds in more than just delicious flavor. It provides a decent source of fruit-based glucose which is used to replace the glycogen you’ve used up from your muscles during exercise.

Ditch the Gatorade and other artificial sports drinks that are anything but natural this summer and opt for this natural electrolyte drink. I bet you might even like it better!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups unsweetened coconut water
  • 1 cup unsweetened organic pineapple juice
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt (the brand below holds more natural trace minerals than most sea salts in the store that typically undergo high heat processing that strips it of essential minerals)

Directions:

  • Mix all the ingredients in a glass jar, and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or so..

 

 

 

My Top 10 Favorite Paleo Meals Across the Web

So I know you all love receiving new healthy recipe ideas so I thought I would put together a list of some of my top favorite paleo recipes that I have found via the internet and cook regularly in my home. Enjoy!

 

1. Grilled Salmon with Avocado Salsa

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Buy wild caught salmon online here.

2. Crockpot Barbacoa Beef

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This is great served over Cilantro Cauliflower Rice and made into a burrito bowl with the toppings of your choice such as cilantro, chopped tomatoes, green onions, salsa, avocado etc..

I use grass-fed beef chuck roasts for this recipe and it is delicious!

 

3. Zucchini Lasagna

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If you tolerate some dairy well, this one is out of this world good! I’ve made it for family members who were skeptical of my healthy pasta alternative, but they all LOVED it! Some liked it even more than regular pasta lasagna. It would still be good without dairy if you absolutely cannot tolerate it well.

It’s worth buying grass-fed mozzarella cheese for this recipe for the extra omega 3’s it holds compared to conventional cheese, just like grass-fed meat!

4. Avocado Chicken Salad

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This is a great recipe to make a big batch of for lunches! I like to eat mine with a side of baby carrots and plantain chips.

Slanker’s is the only company that sells omega 3 rich chicken around!! Their chicken has a much more balanced 2:1 ratio of omega 6 to omega 3. Most chickens you buy at the grocery store have a ratio closer to 20:1. That is inflammation waiting to happen in your body, especially if you eat it all the time!

5. Smoky Bacon Wrapped Chicken Thighs

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I make these all the time without the bacon too. It’s the homemade spice blend that makes these so delicious!!

Slanker’s also sells omega 3 rich bacon now too, but they go out fast!!

6. Stuffed Portabello Mushrooms with Roasted Tomatoes and Goat Cheese

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This is more of an appetizer but still worth being on this post. Pair it with a nice juicy grass-fed steak and you’d have the perfect meal!

Buy high quality grass-fed steaks online here.

7. Lettuce Taco Wraps

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This is such an easy meal that is sure to please the whole family! This recipe calls for ground turkey. I prefer to use grass-fed ground beef. You really can use whatever ground meat you like but just know that the ground turkey you would buy at the grocery store is going to have a much higher omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acid ratio due to its diet high in grains. Diets high in omega 6 are ultimately what lead to inflammation and all chronic disease in your body. If you tolerate dairy well, go for cheese from grass-fed cows.

8. Pumpkin Pancakes

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Because sometimes you crave breakfast for dinner! This is typically our Saturday morning treat at our house, but as a special treat you could make it for dinner too, why not?! You have to top them with sauteed bananas and pure maple syrup or it will not be as good. These are by far the best paleo pancakes I have ever made! This is a special treat meal not an everyday meal.

9. Crockpot Paleo Chili

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Best Chili Ever. Go make it now!!

10. Zucchini Noodles with Basil Almond Pesto and Cherry Tomatoes

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Make this delicious summer pasta salad a meal by topping it with any protein of your choice. Grilled shrimp would be good, wild caught tuna (this is the tuna that I buy) or baked chicken.

Hope you were able to grab a few new recipes from here to add to your collection! Let me know which ones you liked best!

 

**Please know that some of the links are affiliate links which means that if you choose to buy something through those links, I will receive a small commission for the sale which helps support the work of this blog! I never advertise for anything that I do not personally believe in or purchase myself. Thank you!!**

 

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