DUDES! I don't know about you, but I've never been a big fan of meatloaf. It just never did anything for me, and even the name. I mean meat-loaf. It sounds a little gross, right? So in an effort to satisfy my meat eating hubby (I don't eat beef or pork and I'm not a big chicken fan due to the gross wiggly parts), I obliged when he asked for me to find a meatloaf recipe I'd like (turkey, of course). So what's a gal to do? Hit up her trusted friends, obvi. I took to my Facebook community of dope ladies and asked them for help (join here if you're looking for some high vibe friends!). Then, like a total askhole, I didn't take their advice. I had a bell pepper that needed to be eaten or it'd be going to waste, so I used their recipes for inspo and came up with this beauty.
Preheat your oven to 350 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. You won't need a loaf pan for this!
Dice/mince the onion and pepper in a food processor and pulse to desired size. I did a pretty fine mince on the onion and ran the bell pepper until just over diced, heading into mince. There will be liquid that comes from both the onion and bell pepper. No need to drain, just plop it all in the bowl with your turkey, egg, breadcrumbs, seasonings, and sauces and mix together using your hands.
Form the mixture into a "log" shape and plop onto the lined baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes, then brush or spread with the back of a spoon:
1/4 cup bbq sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
Dash(s) of hot sauce to taste.
Continue to cook for another 45 minutes.
The turkey will be super moist, not like your grandma's meatloaf (well, unless your grandma was a bomb cook) and you may be tempted to keep cooking. As long as an internal thermometer reads at least 165 you're good to go!
Serve along side cauliflower mashed faux-tatoes for a yummy, healthy dinner!
I ran a live webinar for the ladies in my free facebook community (click here if you're not already in there!) As my ladies know, I like to turn my mess into my message. I'm not an expert, or a therapist. These are just the things I've learned over the years that I'm passionate about and want to pass on to you. Take it as something to EMPOWER you to create your own thoughts on the topic.
As my ladies also know, I'm not gonna bullshit you. I'm going to be blunt. Please don't take my words personally. They are just meant to help you grow. I'm not over here studying you. I'm just sharing my thoughts, and if you get butthurt about something, it might just be because you need to hear it. ;)
"There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way" - Wayne Dyer. My beloved Wayne had it right. I've seen women who have lost 100+ pounds who became tiny little things with super fit bods be miserable and still feel like shit about themselves despite their accomplishment. I've seen women who are "overweight" by society's standards who love the shit out of themselves (I've actually been that girl!). The point is, you do not need to be a certain size or weight to be happy. You can choose, right now, to love and accept yourself fully, even if you are trying to level up on your fitness or get healthier. If you only attach your happiness to a specific goal, I'd venture a guess that when you get there, you likely still won't be happy. It's awesome to strive for goals, but don't tie your happiness to hem.
You choose whether you feel happy, pretty, and worthy. I hear often from women "I felt pretty" or "I felt really proud". Now sure, a fresh hairdo or doing more push ups in your workout than you could do yesterday might contribute to those feelings, but riddle me this...If you felt pretty or strong or confident one day, doesn't it stand to reason that you could CHOOSE to feel the same way every other day? After all, not much changes from day to day. A fresh haircut is still going to be the same hair a few days later, so you can choose to feel just as gorge as when you step out of the salon. YOU are in charge of how you feel, all day, erryday.
Get over yourself! For reals. Said with love, get over your damn self. If you're concerned about your body or the giant zit on your forehead, stop. Why? Because I can guaran-fricking-tee that no one around you is thinking about your perceived imperfections. No one is judging you that much. You know how you can tell? Because YOU likely aren't judging people that much. Are you sizing up every single woman that you see? Are you judging her based on the cellulite on the back of her legs? If you are, you have some serious internal work to do. But most likely, you either don't notice it, or you're looking at her thinking she's pretty, or has a really great pair of shoes, or you might even be wishing YOU had legs like hers! Guess what chicka? Those ladies are thinking the same thing about you. They ARE NOT picking apart your flaws. And again, if they are, they have SERIOUS work to do, and probably aren't very happy themselves (happy, confident people don't waste their time tearing down others), so they aren't someone who's opinion you should take to heart.
STOP NEGATIVE SELF TALK AND STOP HANGING OUT WITH PEOPLE WHO ENGAGE IN IT. Period. As you think, so shall you be. If you are consistently saying how "bad" you are for eating (EATING, people!! We need to eat to survive. You may not have made the healthiest choice, but come on, you don't have to talk shit about yourself for feeding yourself), or how "awful" your thighs are, you are going to continue feeling like shit about yourself. I know it is a habit and it takes time, but if you can start to be mindful of the nasty things you say to yourself, and work to stop saying them, you will eventually stop thinking them. Speak to yourself the way you'd speak to a friend. You don't get to talk shit about someone I care about, and I care about you. So stop talking shit about that awesome woman (you!). Same thing goes for the women around you. As I said before, happy, confident women don't tear others down. If you're around a woman who does, you have every right to limit your time with her. Negativity is contagious. You don't need to hang around peeps who are infected. You are the sum of the 5 people you spend the most time with. Choose wisely. Find yourself some friends who lift you and others up, rather than pulling them down.
Shift your focus about your body from the intense desire to change it, or to "get skinny", etc. to being HEALTHY and PROUD. When you ONLY focus on getting skinny, things get stressful AF. The scale isn't always going to cooperate. You're going to have days where your workout sucks or you fall off track with your nutrition. Lean into the GOOD things you're doing, the benefits you are getting, like a longer life, stronger joints and muscles, and just plain feeling like an accomplished badass.
Get rid of the all or nothing mentality with fitness/health. Being "perfect" on a meal plan and fitness routine is NOT POSSIBLE. Humans are not perfect. We slip up. We have busy days where we can't workout. We end up stuck without healthy foods and end up eating nachos (Mmmmm, nachos). It's not possible to be perfect forever, and when you go on a "diet", depriving yourself of virtually everything, or working out like a madwoman without any leeway, typically, you're going to end up crashing, and when you do, you're going to feel like shit and likely less confident than when you did before you started. If you can focus on a MOSTLY healthy lifestyle, it's much more maintainable. Eating healthy all week and having a pizza one night doesn't make you unhealthy. Eating healthy all week and having pizza one night when ALL you are focusing on is your abs, is going to make you wake up the next day without abs, and you're going to feel like your week of healthy choices was for naught. But it's not. Trying to be/stay healthy is always gorgeous.
Invest in yourself (and not a fucking mani-pedi). Make yourself a priority in your life and invest in something that will benefit you or make you happy. Shoes and purses are great, but you didn't create them. You really can only be proud of the money you spent to buy it...which is great! But short lived. A few years ago I decided to invest in one of those Micheal's cake decorating classes. I can't tell you how proud I was when I brought the cake I decorated into work and people were impressed with my skills. Invest in something that will benefit you in the long run, and help you feel accomplished and proud. Keeping it real, I feel like investing in the tools I use and my coaching is a pretty bomb investment. You can read about it here.
Create affirmations and make lists of the things you DO love about yourself. Listen, I get it. If you're not busting at the seams with confidence, I'm sure it might feel weird to say you love every single thing about yourself. But I am SURE that despite the little things we'd love to change about our looks if it was as easy as asking a genie, there are some things you DO like about yourself. I could look at my uneven nostrils and scars on my face, and dwell on them, or I can say "My eyebrows are on point!" or "Gahhh I am such a good friend". Put sticky notes around your house reminding yourself about the AWESOME things about you. Every time you have a negative thought about yourself, come to your affirmations, and read them back to yourself, and dwell on the AWESOME things about you.
I hope this has helped! I could talk about this stuff forever, and I truly believe that every woman, regardless of her weight, size, shape, complexion, facial features, deserves to feel BEAUTIFUL and FABULOUS. I hope that you'll lean into those positive feelings and thoughts about yourself. You deserve it. If you need me in your corner while you're on your fitness journey, I'm here! If you want more dopeness like this coming atya on the daily, follow me over on Facebook.
It's ok. You can admit it. We have ALL been there, girlfriend!
I've come to terms with the fact that between myself and my hubby, I'm the one who is going to have to "handle" the life stuff. And I don't mind that, because let's be honest, if I am doing it, at least I know it's getting done. But for me, the times where I feel most stressed out over being the point person for our household in general is when I'm not taking care of ME. I'm not fitting in the stuff that fills my cup and brings me joy. When I'm feeling depleted, that's when I'm most likely to switch into pity party mode.
So, having learned to be a gal of SOLUTIONS rather than just fucking wallowing, my little ears perked up when a friend told me about an app that was keeping her organized. It's called Habit Bull. And it's the bomb. The free version allows you to track 5 daily habits, checking them off your list day by day, and allowing you to see a week at a time, to track how well you are sticking to them. Now, of course, you could use this to keep track of work or whether little Bobby did his homework, but I'm asking you to use it to take care of YOU every day. Pick 5 things that you keep saying you *should* make time for but don't, and make time for them! I check off exercise, meditation, my A Course In Miracles study, and some other form of personal growth book or listening (if you have no idea what I'm talking about, head over to my "grow thyself" tab on my website for some of my fave recommendations), and whether I ate according to my meal plan. Per my fitness philosophy, I'm not super rigid with this one. I just give myself a circle if I didn't go totally off the rails with pizza and beers. And if I did, that's totally ok. I just try to take note as to whether there are several days of that type of eating strung together, and when there is, I get real with myself and admit that I'm in a binge of some sort, and I gotta get my shit together.
Since I've started tracking my habits, I gotta tell ya, it's been really eye opening. The days I feel shitty, I look down at the app and realize I haven't been taking care of me. Days I feel good, you can bet that all of those circles are filled in. I really hope you'll give it a download and start taking care of you. It's not selfish, and it really will give you more energy to put towards taking care of everyone else.
Use EXTRA FIRM tofu (NOT the silken kind) and press the water out (again...google if you're not sure how to do this..I just put it between two plates and let a few cans rest on top for about an hour).
I used one block and cut it into 4th's for 4 servings.
Heat up some olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add chopped onion or garlic if you like that sorta thing (I do!) and add the tofu. Crumble it up with your spatula and heat it through, then add the spices!
Tumeric adds a little bit of a savory, sorta curry type flavor, but it also adds the scrambled egg color. I just used a few dashes because I don't particularly care for that type of flavoring.
Use whatever kinds of spices you like, but just because it's a vegan food, that doesn't mean you have to load it up, which is apparently a common mistake when people cook with tofu. Spice like a normal person. I used just a pinch of salt and pepper only.
If you're vegan you can use nutritional yeast, but I added some crumbled queso fresco!
Serve over a qrunch burger, in a breakfast burrito, or with home fries!
I've said it before, I'll say it again. I really and truly feel that the 21 Day Fix meal plan should be in every household. I'm not saying it needs to be followed strictly all day every day, forever, but it is SUCH a good guideline as far as how much of each food group most people should be eating to maintain good health and a healthy weight. I always tell my challengers that even if you can follow it 80%, you will likely see results, and you will absolutely feel more energy and much healthier.
That being said, I'm not one of those crafty chicks that has all sorts of crazy recipes. The Fixate cookbook is AMAZING, but aside from a few recipes (like Grandma's tomato sauce), you won't see me using it. I'm a simple girl. I don't particularly care for cooking. I get asked for healthy recipes all the time, and the truth is, I just don't have them. Unless it's for a date night in with my man or a home cooked meal for my boys, most of my meals aren't anything that requires a recipe. I usually just keep things simple by throwing together a protein, a healthy carb, and veggies, much like the meal options I've given you below. Of course, you're going to have to use the calculations in your 21 day fix booklet to figure out how many containers of each you'll need to eat, but here are a few simple sample meals ideas to get you rolling!
I hate to break it to you, but most people on social media aren't your real friends. They're mostly just random people who've found their way into your life thanks to the power of technology. If you think social media is stealing your joy, you must be more selective with your "friends". Yes, SOCIAL media is meant to broaden your horizons and expand your network, but if it's causing your blood pressure to rise, you'll want to start vetting your prospectives. If a quick review of their page shows that they aren't up your alley, don't send or accept a request. It's TOTALLY ok to not respond to a friend request if you think someone's not going to be a positive addition to your life.
So we're clear on #NoNewFriends unless they aren't dicks, but what about the old ones? Here's where things can get dicey. If someone is causing you stress or unhappiness when they pop up in the newsfeed, you have a few choices. Unfollow, unfriend, or become a zen master. I reserve the unfollow button for people who I don't want to remove from my online life completely, but may spam my feed with contest entries or frequently post things that aren't in my realm of interest (Sorry, hunters, I don't wanna see your dead deer pics). Do not feel guilty about unfollowing someone. First, they will never find out. Facebook does not notify someone that you've unfollowed them. More importantly, it's not selfish or wrong in any way to protect your personal energy. This is YOUR social media feed. You can choose what you want to see just like you choose your TV channels. This will help you stay in JOY when your online.
The more decisive option is the unfriend button. It's important to remember that we are not the morality police. Not everyone is going to see things through the same lense. I think grace is a great attribute to have, but for me personally, deal breakers are hateful opinions, constant complaining, or just flat out drama. If you're contemplating deleting your mother-in-law or your boss's wife, you're going to need to really think about whether you want to press that nuke button, but for random acquaintances, I'm pretty liberal with it nowadays. I used to be more concerned with hurting people's feelings by unfriending than I was with protecting my own energy, until one day I totally lost my cool. Someone whom I had previously considered defriending but didn't want to offend, who never interacted with me on my 99.9% uncontroversial, positive, uplifting posts, felt the need to pop up one day and publicly admonish me when they saw a chance to do so. I let my ego flare and handled the situation pretty poorly, to be honest, but my biggest mistake was not previously removing this person from my life. Had I followed my gut in the first place, I would have avoided the ridiculously unneccesary drama. Sadly, especially online, there are a lot of people ready to argue or point out any little mis-step you make, but if you can weed them out early on based on their interaction with others or the way that they carry themselves, it might make your social media life that much more peaceful.
Above all else, remember, it's JUST social media. At the end of the day, no matter what you do, you're not really harming anyone, and if someone gets their panties in a bunch because of what you're posting or if you didn't "accept" them as a friend, they probably aren't someone you want in your life anyway.
Let's face it, nowadays social media is a scary place. People are so comfortable behind their keyboards that they say things they'd NEVER utter in public and certainly not to someone's face. If you've got anyone on your friend's list who doesn't have EXACTLY the same beliefs as you, you're going to run into things that raise your blood pressure now and then. This is where a little bit of GRACE comes into play. Wayne Dyer, my spriritual guru, talks about people who are constantly looking for occasions to be offended. I believe, in our instant gratification/social media driven society, this describes most of us (yes, even me!). We look at things and decide based on OUR perceptions what is offensive, assume that we know all facts and the other person's intention, and then proceed to argue for our point of view. One of the personal growth principles that has helped me tremendously in my journey is the realization that my way is not always the "right" way of doing things/believing/acting,etc.
Here's an assignment. I guarantee, at least once today, you'll see an opinion on social media that you disagree with. Maybe it's a funtamental belief or maybe it's just an opinion on a TV show. Your assignment for today is to observe that need inside of you to comment, and then SCROLL PAST. Notice how that feels. Depending on the severity of the offense, you may literally feel the anger rising within you. THAT is your ego. That's the part of you that says "I'm right, you're wrong, and I'm here with a powerpoint presentation to tell you why." We humans have this little guy inside of all of us, and he can bring a buttload of stress if we don't keep him in check. We were all raised differently, with different experiences, beliefs, and emotions, and we ALL think our way is right. But if you can start to open yourself up to the idea of allowing another person to live inside of their beliefs without your opinion or interference, I promise you'll start to feel more peace almost instantly. If you simply cannot pass it by without interjecting your opinion, that's a sure sign that you are being led by your ego, and you're going to keep a lot of that stress involved with keeping that ego satisfied. As one of my dear friends says, "Your ego is not your amigo."
Allowing your ego to subside and accepting all people for their different opinions is a profound virtue and will absolutely lead to more peace in your social media existence, but when it comes to the people you associate with, you DO also have the right to decide whether the person's comment or belief is a deal breaker for you. For example, for myself, someone who uses hate speech is not someone I'd continue to associate with and would "de-friend" quite easily. However, if someone is (and I'm gonna get heavy here for a sec) pro-life, where I am pro-choice, that's an issue that I can step back and say This is their belief, and as long as they don't force their opinions on myself or others, it is not a friendship deal-breaker. You can choose which peeps/views are too extreme to keep around and quietly (without bowing to your ego's need to make a big production) remove them from your friend's list, but I urge you to use a little grace and again remember that we all come to our beliefs through our personal experiences in life. Cutting out everyone who has differing beliefs will likely leave you bored and quite lonely.
It's so important nowadays when people are so quick to argue to use some self introspection. Check in with yourself. Ask yourself WHY you're being triggered in such a way, or why you feel compelled to argue. Search your soul for what you TRULY believe in and maybe turn that passion into something positive and tangible, like joining your local government or volunteering for the cause that means so much to you. Ultimately you choose. You can be argumentative or you can choose peace.
I've been going back and forth about my relationship with social media lately. On one hand, being a football wife who moves pretty frequently (5 states in 7 years), it keeps me not only connected to friends that I've left behind, but has helped me find some dope virtual friends. When you move around a lot, it's not always super easy to find local buds that you actually have things in common with, so some of the ladies that keep me sane and laughing on a daily basis are ones that I only see a few times a year or I've never even met in person. I've met them in facebook groups or through my beloved Beachbody sistahood and I'm so grateful for each and every one of them.
With the positives there are also some major drawbacks. The first, and most important, is to realize that social media can literally be an addiction. Think about it, how many times have you sat down to watch a movie or been at lunch with your bestie, and you subconciously check your phone. If you're over 30, take some time to remember what life was like before all of this technology. What did you do to entertain yourself? What did you take joy in? If you're not old enough to remember a time like this, ask someone. It really is eye opening when you step back and notice how much of your precious time on this earth is spent with your face in a little screen. It's good to break away a little bit, especially if it's causing you stress.
The drawback that I'm going to be talking about during this series is social media stealing your joy and causing unhappiness in your life. Confession: I'm a bit of a hippie. I totally believe that it is possible to be happy most of the time, and I don't believe anything in this world has the power to cause you stress without your consent. I'm not here just to bitch. I'm here to offer solutions. They may be a little hippie-ish, but if you're cool with that, check out the rest of the series to get started on bringing your happy back!
No BS, you're likely not going to learn anything here that you haven't heard before. There are SO many resources out there written by far fitter, smarter people than myself. I'm just hoping that something in my delivery will help you make the changes necessary to change your lifestyle if that's what you're looking to do. A little background, my highest weight was 210 pounds. I changed my life by starting the Insanity workout program with the help of a coach and online support group. I was able to implement exercise into my lifestyle, but still struggled with food. I was a fast food junkie, and still consider myself somewhat of a food addict. If there is an unhealthy choice to make, I will make it. I have very little self control when it comes to ooey, gooey, cheesey yumminess, yet I've still managed to lose a significant amount of weight. If you want the exact programs and tools that I used, we can talk about that, but I'm going to give you three basic tips that helped me create long term, lasting results.
1. Fix your mindset. It can't be all or nothing, and it has to be a joyful process. So many women that I coach struggle with this. I'm going to be blunt here. The only person that is forcing you into an all or nothing, love/hate relationship with health and fitness is you. There isn't someone standing over you saying "You ate those cheese fries for lunch, you might as well just eat pizza for dinner, then ice cream, then eat any other shit you can find and start again Monday" or "You are never gonna be able to lose weight, why are you even trying?" (If there is, we need to talk about what kinds of friends you have). Sound familiar though? If you've been struggling, it's likely because of what you're telling YOURSELF. You have to get out of that. I can't tell you exactly how (though I CAN offer you resources to get started!). You have to start to change your thought process and self talk. Hard rules and beating yourself up just does not work. Health/fitness/losing weight is ALL mental. If you can learn to change your mindset, you can reach any goal you set for yourself.
2. STOP DIETING. Again, I see this all the time. Women following diets, going on and off them, never having lasting success. My suggestion is an 80/20 lifestyle, meaning 80% of your foods should be healthy, whole foods. Ignore the fat content and calories and focus on the ingredients. If they weren't grown from the ground or raised on a farm, it's most likely not healthy. Save those treats for your 20% unhealthy foods. Following this strategy, in my opinion, is much more doable because when you do occasionally indulge, it's ALLOWED, and you don't feel like you've "blown it", but MOST of your food is coming from natural, healthy sources and providing your body the nutrients it needs for health.
3. Get active. I know, you're thinking "I'm exhausted. I don't have the energy to workout." I really cannot say it enough that implementing exercise into your life will create more energy, but if you never try, you'll never see that. It might be rough for the first week, but after that, you really will start to have more energy. As far as not having time? That's bullshit. Everyone's busy. We've all got shit to do. If you think the next guy somehow has extra time in the day, you gotta check your ego. It's not that the next guy has more time or less responsibilities than you. It's that they've MADE time for exercise. You don't have to commit to an hour every single day. 4 half-hour sessions a week will help you towards tremendous health benefits and physical results.
So there you have it. It's simple and it works. These tips, if implemented, will 100% help you make changes to your health and fitness. If you're looking for major changes, head on over to the "work with me" tab and let's get started on your fitness overhaul!
Hi! I'm Andrea Cummings. I am passionate about living a healthy lifestyle that I can MAINTAIN and that still lets me feel like I'm not being deprived. I like to exercise, but I also love to eat (nachos!). My main focus is to be healthy, not skinny, and to help others do the same! I love Jesus, but I also say fuck a lot, so if you're offended, I may not be the gal for you.