A work in progress

A BLOG DEDICATED TO MOTIVATING MYSELF TO BECOME WHO I WANT TO BE, AND PROVIDE RESOURCES, MOTIVATION AND SUPPORT TO OTHERS.

redefiningfood:

Pink and green for breakfast: Strawberry and avocado whole grain toast with homemade pesto and microgreens
The avocado toast is a perennial favourite for any health foodie, and after yesterday’s beauty of a breakfast I was thinking I would go back to basics. But events conspired against me: my mother washed some extra strawberries and left them in the fridge for me, and our neighbours brought over some of the freshest, most beautiful microgreens. So it was decided: avocado toast would instead transform into another unforgettable affair. 
I’ve seen strawberry and avocado toasts before, but they usually always feature goat cheese. In trying to do a non-fat vegan version, I used pesto instead - and it was perfect. 
Toast a thin slice of whole grain toast and spread it with pesto
Slice avocado and put them on top, sprinkling some chilli flakes 
Toss the microgreens with even more pesto, and then place them on top of the avocado
Insert the strawberries in between the micogreens, and enjoy! 

redefiningfood:

Pink and green for breakfast: Strawberry and avocado whole grain toast with homemade pesto and microgreens

The avocado toast is a perennial favourite for any health foodie, and after yesterday’s beauty of a breakfast I was thinking I would go back to basics. But events conspired against me: my mother washed some extra strawberries and left them in the fridge for me, and our neighbours brought over some of the freshest, most beautiful microgreens. So it was decided: avocado toast would instead transform into another unforgettable affair. 

I’ve seen strawberry and avocado toasts before, but they usually always feature goat cheese. In trying to do a non-fat vegan version, I used pesto instead - and it was perfect. 

  1. Toast a thin slice of whole grain toast and spread it with pesto
  2. Slice avocado and put them on top, sprinkling some chilli flakes 
  3. Toss the microgreens with even more pesto, and then place them on top of the avocado
  4. Insert the strawberries in between the micogreens, and enjoy! 

(via beautifulpicturesofhealthyfood)

Sexy Arms in 6 WeeksIf you’re just starting out, aim for two sets of 8 to 12 reps of the heaviest weight you can handle for each exercise. Looking for more of a challenge? Shoot for two sets of 15 to 25 reps per exercise.
Do this 3 times a week, with one day of rest between each workout. Start with a weight that you find comfortable, but a little challenging, so something that you can lift with slight discomfort. If it’s too easy, it’s too light! Gradually increase the weight as it becomes more comfortable. 
Bent-Over Row Step IPrimary muscles worked: lats, back extensors, rhomboids, rear shoulders, biceps, core. Stand with a slight bend at the knees, holding the weights at your sides. Lean over, extending your chest while reaching your hips back. Allow your arms to hang straight down toward the floor with your palms facing your thighs.
Bent-Over Row Step II  Looking forward at the ground (not up), pull your elbows up and rotate your hands until your palms are nearly touching your upper rib cage and your elbows point toward the ceiling. Lower the weights to the starting position with control. Repeat.tip: Keep your belly button pulled in toward your spine to engage your core and protect your lower back.
Upright Row Step IPrimary muscles worked: shoulders, upper back, biceps.Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart with the weights hanging down in front of your body, their ends touching.Upright Row Step IIRaise your upper arms, leading with your elbows while bringing the weights up the front of your body as if you were tracing an imaginary midpoint, stopping when your elbows become level with your shoulders. Lower the weights back to the starting position.tip: Keep your chin up and your belly button tucked in.
Chest Press on Ball Step IPrimary muscles worked: chest, front of shoulders, triceps. Sit on a ball and walk out so that your head and shoulder blades are resting on the ball. Lift your hips by contracting your glute muscles to make a bridge. (Your feet should be shoulder-width apart and below your knees to give you stable support.)Chest Press on Ball Step II Bring the dumbbells to your shoulders. Then extend your arms over your chest and bring the dumbbells together to make a triangle over your chest. Lower the weights back to the starting position and repeat. tip: You will need to engage your core throughout the exercise to avoid falling off the ball.Overhead Press on Ball Step IPrimary muscles worked: shoulders, upper back, triceps. Sit on an exercise ball with your belly button pulled toward the spine. Hold the weights in front of your shoulders, your palms facing in.Overhead Press on Ball Step IIPush the weights up until your arms are extended. When your arms are extended, they should be slightly in front of you rather than directly overhead. Lower the weights to the starting position and repeat.tip: Keep your chin lifted slightly and your core stable.from this website.

Sexy Arms in 6 Weeks
If you’re just starting out, aim for two sets of 8 to 12 reps of the heaviest weight you can handle for each exercise. Looking for more of a challenge? Shoot for two sets of 15 to 25 reps per exercise.

Do this 3 times a week, with one day of rest between each workout. 

Start with a weight that you find comfortable, but a little challenging, so something that you can lift with slight discomfort. If it’s too easy, it’s too light! Gradually increase the weight as it becomes more comfortable. 

Bent-Over Row Step I
Primary muscles worked: lats, back extensors, rhomboids, rear shoulders, biceps, core. Stand with a slight bend at the knees, holding the weights at your sides. Lean over, extending your chest while reaching your hips back. Allow your arms to hang straight down toward the floor with your palms facing your thighs.

Bent-Over Row Step II  
Looking forward at the ground (not up), pull your elbows up and rotate your hands until your palms are nearly touching your upper rib cage and your elbows point toward the ceiling. Lower the weights to the starting position with control. Repeat.
tip: Keep your belly button pulled in toward your spine to engage your core and protect your lower back.

Upright Row Step I
Primary muscles worked: shoulders, upper back, biceps.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart with the weights hanging down in front of your body, their ends touching.

Upright Row Step II
Raise your upper arms, leading with your elbows while bringing the weights up the front of your body as if you were tracing an imaginary midpoint, stopping when your elbows become level with your shoulders. Lower the weights back to the starting position.
tip: Keep your chin up and your belly button tucked in.

Chest Press on Ball Step I
Primary muscles worked: chest, front of shoulders, triceps. Sit on a ball and walk out so that your head and shoulder blades are resting on the ball. Lift your hips by contracting your glute muscles to make a bridge. (Your feet should be shoulder-width apart and below your knees to give you stable support.)

Chest Press on Ball Step II 
Bring the dumbbells to your shoulders. Then extend your arms over your chest and bring the dumbbells together to make a triangle over your chest. Lower the weights back to the starting position and repeat. 
tip: You will need to engage your core throughout the exercise to avoid falling off the ball.

Overhead Press on Ball Step I
Primary muscles worked: shoulders, upper back, triceps. Sit on an exercise ball with your belly button pulled toward the spine. Hold the weights in front of your shoulders, your palms facing in.

Overhead Press on Ball Step II
Push the weights up until your arms are extended. When your arms are extended, they should be slightly in front of you rather than directly overhead. Lower the weights to the starting position and repeat.
tip: Keep your chin lifted slightly and your core stable.

from this website.

(via theafrocentricasian)

With 2013 coming to an end, I’ve complied a list of my favourite posts of the year, including stories, recipes, and quotes, with an emphasis on feeling good. I hope this is useful, and inspiring! May we all have a prosperous, and beautiful 2014!Many of these links can be found in my tumblr guide to healthy living :)Mind50 ways to cope with stressTen steps to a positive body imageHow to stay motivatedWhy not you?!To be a great championSix websites to go to when you’re upsetSimple guide to healthHow to avoid overeating and bingeing You are not a machine16 small steps to happiness25 resolutions everyone should make25 things you should do before you turn 258 tips for feeling more awake Positive imagesPersonal qualities not measured by testsAmy Poehler’s awesome adviceMore Amy Poehler quotes because she’s so awesomeAnd some more Amy PoehlerWise words from RupaulMake yourselfWho do you want to be?Self-esteem with Portia de RossiNever give upStrength will find youDecide who you want to beNeve Campbell on body image10 things we can do to make life easier for each other10 ways to be confident10 steps to self-esteem16 steps to improve your body image100 reasons to stay alive10 things you must give up to move forwardShay & Ashley from Pretty Little Liars on eatingArrow quoteSuccess comes when you refuse to give upHow to have a lovely dayHow to get a bikini bodyPick yourself in two weeksFive points to live happilyBest things about being blindAshton Kutcher speechAre you happy flowchartTake care of yourselfRestoring faith in humanityMore restoring faith in humanityYou can do anythingRebornBodyNutrition100+ healthy lunchbox ideasBig list of healthy recipesGet lean grocery listClean eating grocery list30 Healthy Thanksgiving recipes6 healthy recipes100 calorie snacksthe look better naked 2 day cleanseWhat does under-eating look like?Guide to eating outPaleo diet info-graphicCrispy Baked Zucchini FriesBalsamic roasted carrotsHealthy Sesame Kale ChipsOven roasted tomatoesBye bye boring saladsFlat belly meal planFlat belly meal plan 2Packing healthy lunches to goSpaghetti with broccoli pestoVegetarian Mexican salad boatsHow to cook quinoaQuinoa salad in a jarCauliflower steaksSpicy quinoa stuffed avocadoQuinoa pizza bitesCauliflower pizza bitesAvocado, bean, asparagus saladCarrot ribbon fettucini Zucchini lasagnaTahini FalafelGrilled zucchini pizzaItalian quinoa bitesQuinoa stuffed peppersGrilled artichoke pesto zucchini bitesZucchini fritters with tzatzikiBaked zucchini chipsTzatziki recipeFor your sweet toothArchive of healthy desserts and beveragesCinnamon vanilla almond butter banana popsBanana Oat CookiesEnergy bitesNutella frozen banana bitesBanana ice creamHealthy peanut butter oatmeal cookiesReal fruit roll upsGluten-free cookiesCake batter ice creamBeveragesInfused waterPost workout protein shakesDIY vitamin waterTea timeSmoothiesExerciseSlim your waistCore exerciseTone it up printable routineCore exercise 2The perfect 10 exercisesButt workoutsFirm your buttThe gift of a great buttBeginner weight loss exercise planAbsBikini BlasterEquipment free Tabata workoutBuild a better workoutGood morning/good night yoga sequenceThe secret to Jillian’s amazing armsGirl’s guide to the weight roomUltimate resistance tube movesFlat tummy, hard absA full body workoutSkipping rope workoutSlimmer hips & thighsStar workoutAll over body workoutBeginners yoga5 yoga poses at your desk

With 2013 coming to an end, I’ve complied a list of my favourite posts of the year, including stories, recipes, and quotes, with an emphasis on feeling good. I hope this is useful, and inspiring! May we all have a prosperous, and beautiful 2014!

Many of these links can be found in my tumblr guide to healthy living :)

Mind
50 ways to cope with stress
Ten steps to a positive body image

How to stay motivated
Why not you?!
To be a great champion
Six websites to go to when you’re upset
Simple guide to health
How to avoid overeating and bingeing 
You are not a machine
16 small steps to happiness
25 resolutions everyone should make
25 things you should do before you turn 25
8 tips for feeling more awake 
Positive images
Personal qualities not measured by tests
Amy Poehler’s awesome advice
More Amy Poehler quotes because she’s so awesome
And some more Amy Poehler
Wise words from Rupaul
Make yourself
Who do you want to be?
Self-esteem with Portia de Rossi
Never give up
Strength will find you
Decide who you want to be
Neve Campbell on body image
10 things we can do to make life easier for each other
10 ways to be confident
10 steps to self-esteem
16 steps to improve your body image
100 reasons to stay alive
10 things you must give up to move forward
Shay & Ashley from Pretty Little Liars on eating
Arrow quote
Success comes when you refuse to give up
How to have a lovely day
How to get a bikini body
Pick yourself in two weeks
Five points to live happily
Best things about being blind
Ashton Kutcher speech
Are you happy flowchart
Take care of yourself
Restoring faith in humanity
More restoring faith in humanity
You can do anything
Reborn

Body
Nutrition
100+ healthy lunchbox ideas
Big list of healthy recipes
Get lean grocery list
Clean eating grocery list
30 Healthy Thanksgiving recipes
6 healthy recipes
100 calorie snacks
the look better naked 2 day cleanse
What does under-eating look like?
Guide to eating out
Paleo diet info-graphic
Crispy Baked Zucchini Fries
Balsamic roasted carrots
Healthy Sesame Kale Chips
Oven roasted tomatoes
Bye bye boring salads
Flat belly meal plan
Flat belly meal plan 2
Packing healthy lunches to go
Spaghetti with broccoli pesto
Vegetarian Mexican salad boats
How to cook quinoa
Quinoa salad in a jar
Cauliflower steaks
Spicy quinoa stuffed avocado
Quinoa pizza bites
Cauliflower pizza bites
Avocado, bean, asparagus salad
Carrot ribbon fettucini 
Zucchini lasagna
Tahini Falafel
Grilled zucchini pizza
Italian quinoa bites
Quinoa stuffed peppers
Grilled artichoke pesto zucchini bites
Zucchini fritters with tzatziki
Baked zucchini chips
Tzatziki recipe
For your sweet tooth
Archive of healthy desserts and beverages
Cinnamon vanilla almond butter banana pops
Banana Oat Cookies
Energy bites
Nutella frozen banana bites
Banana ice cream
Healthy peanut butter oatmeal cookiesReal fruit roll ups
Gluten-free cookies
Cake batter ice cream
Beverages
Infused water
Post workout protein shakes
DIY vitamin water
Tea time
Smoothies
Exercise
Slim your waist
Core exercise
Tone it up printable routine
Core exercise 2
The perfect 10 exercises
Butt workouts
Firm your butt
The gift of a great butt
Beginner weight loss exercise plan
Abs
Bikini Blaster
Equipment free Tabata workout
Build a better workout
Good morning/good night yoga sequence
The secret to Jillian’s amazing arms
Girl’s guide to the weight room
Ultimate resistance tube moves
Flat tummy, hard abs
A full body workout
Skipping rope workout
Slimmer hips & thighs
Star workout
All over body workout
Beginners yoga
5 yoga poses at your desk

Anti-oxidant spinach, blackberry, & strawberry smoothie!

Add your choice of water, milk, soy milk or coconut water! Optional: honey, or sweetener

Combine ingredients and blend!

Sample Meal Plan Day 1 BreakfastSpinach Egg White Omelette recipeThere’s a lot of spinach tomato omelette recipes online. They are all relatively the same. You can use the whole egg if you wish, or a combination (1 whole egg, 2 egg whites), whatever makes you happy, and meets your nutritional requirements. 6 egg whites is approximately 1 serving, but I am usually satisfied after 3, and I like adding more seasoning and spices, see what works for you! Add whatever cheese you want :)
Morning SnackGrapefruit, or any fruit of your choice!
LunchMango Black Bean SaladSounds and looks so good to me! Filling and nutritional. You can also substitute grilled chicken, or beef if you don’t like black beans. Cucumber Chickpea Salad, or Herbed Lentil Salad are good alternatives.
Afternoon Snack Rosemary Roasted Carrotsor Curried Baked Carrots Chips as a similar alternative
DinnerGrilled Chicken Caesar SaladAlternate method: SaladCombine romaine lettuce, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, and olives in a large bowl and toss. Add ½ tablespoon olive oil, mix well.Dressing (make 1 cup to use for later)Combine 1 cup greek yogurt, juice of ½ a lemon (or lime), salt to taste, ½ finely chopped garlic clove and season to taste (basil, oregano, etc) Additional caesar dressing recipe here, and here
Evening SnackYogurt parfait Combine any flavour 0% yogurt, strawberries, honey (or other sweetener), and granola or flaxseed in a bowl, and enjoy! Alternate recipes here, and here Make sure you drink lots of water throughout the day! And eat as many fruits and vegetables as you like, the above is just a guideline. I will be posting an all vegan version shortly! :)
This meal plan is estimated to be from 1200 - 1500, make adjustments according to your dietary needs by removing or adding foods. 

Sample Meal Plan 
Day 1 

Breakfast
Spinach Egg White Omelette recipe
There’s a lot of spinach tomato omelette recipes online. They are all relatively the same. You can use the whole egg if you wish, or a combination (1 whole egg, 2 egg whites), whatever makes you happy, and meets your nutritional requirements. 6 egg whites is approximately 1 serving, but I am usually satisfied after 3, and I like adding more seasoning and spices, see what works for you! Add whatever cheese you want :)

Morning Snack
Grapefruit, or any fruit of your choice!

Lunch
Mango Black Bean Salad
Sounds and looks so good to me! Filling and nutritional. You can also substitute grilled chicken, or beef if you don’t like black beans. 
Cucumber Chickpea Salad, or Herbed Lentil Salad are good alternatives.

Afternoon Snack 
Rosemary Roasted Carrots
or Curried Baked Carrots Chips as a similar alternative

Dinner
Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad
Alternate method:
Salad
Combine romaine lettuce, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, and olives in a large bowl and toss. Add ½ tablespoon olive oil, mix well.
Dressing (make 1 cup to use for later)
Combine 1 cup greek yogurt, juice of ½ a lemon (or lime), salt to taste, ½ finely chopped garlic clove and season to taste (basil, oregano, etc) 
Additional caesar dressing recipe here, and here

Evening Snack
Yogurt parfait 
Combine any flavour 0% yogurt, strawberries, honey (or other sweetener), and granola or flaxseed in a bowl, and enjoy! 
Alternate recipes here, and here 

Make sure you drink lots of water throughout the day! And eat as many fruits and vegetables as you like, the above is just a guideline. 

I will be posting an all vegan version shortly! :)

This meal plan is estimated to be from 1200 - 1500, make adjustments according to your dietary needs by removing or adding foods. 

Anonymous said: hi i'm really starting to lose faith in everything trying to lose weight. instead of getting any progress, all i gotten is a lower self esteem and a couple extra pounds. i don't think i eat nearly enough calories in the day as i should and i know its a bad habit but i'm just so lost. i feel like i'm never gonna make progress, i'm never gonna get that body i've always dreamed of... can you please help me?? idk what to do, where to start..

hello my dear :)

let me start by saying that believing is everything, change your thoughts and you change your world. there was a time when i felt the same. i had over a hundred pounds to lose, and that overwhelmed me. i thought it was impossible, that it just could not be done. when i first started, i didn’t’ even believe i could, but i tried anyway. i faked it. i failed countless times, but little by little, pound after pound, i was losing weight. i was successful. every accomplishment is a success. you need to remind yourself how wonderful you are, everyone has doubts themselves at some point, everyone has their ups and downs. don’t be so hard on yourself. i don’t know what your stats are, or goals. but it doesn’t matter, you can do anything if you work hard enough. surround yourself in positivity, smile, dig deep and believe, get excited, everything you want can be yours. hard work, patience, and positivity. 

think about why you think you can’t, and think of every possible reason. and then find the solution. too much weight? just focus on one pound at a time, short term goals. don’t know what to eat? there are a million meal plans available. don’t know how much to eat? countless resources to help you. in the end, it doesn’t matter why you think you can’t. the truth is, you can, you have it in you, you just need to find it. i can’t express how stuck i felt, that things would never change. but you can change everything. i thought i had way too much weight to lose, but there are people who were much heavier than i was that have lost more, if they can do it, so can you. if i can do it, so can you. it starts with you, your thoughts, create a vision board of your favourite quotes, whatever inspires you and look at it everyday, multiple times a day. ask yourself why you want this, and never forget. everyone has their off days, and its always good to indulge every now and then, encouraged in fact. but just make sure that you are healthy 80% of the time, try to preplan your meals, listen to your body and do what works for you. if you think you’re not eating enough, write down what you consume, and it might give you a wake up call. i don’t have all the details, but how concerned would you be if your friend, sister, girlfriend, boyfriend, a child, a loved one told you they are not eating much. have that same concern for yourself. you are important. just focus on being healthy and happy :)

you need to remind yourself daily of what you want. and just bathe in it, soak it in every day. believe it, be about it, breathe it. you’re already there. 

i believe in you, now you just have to believe in yourself <3

i’ve linked some resources to help you below

tumblr guide to healthy living
how to stay motivated 
healthy desserts 
Plan that helped her lose 100 lbs (link does not work)
How she lost 90 lbs
Veggie pizza with cauliflower crust
Raw ginger snap balls
Baby carrots and hummus
Lunch ideas
Quinoa salad in a jar
Yogurt drops 
Meal ideas from runnersworld
Power breakfasts
Best breakfast, lunch and dinner
Realistic foods for breakfast & weight loss
Strawberry Banana Spinach Smoothie 
Eating and exercise
When & What You Should Eat
50 Awesome Pre and Post Workout Snacks* really great list!
Pre workout choices
Premarathon Carbs 
15 steps to get the body you want
Exercises you can do at home (try a few to start if you are a beginner)

images that make me feel good
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my unfinished wall of inspiration

and feel free to message me off anon (i won’t publish anything without running it by you), or email me at losingeveryextrapound@gmail.com if you feel more comfortable, i’ll be on gtalk if you’d like to chat (this is an open invitation to anyone) :) 
*edit: i’ll be on gtalk in an hour or so :)

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