Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Food Journaling

Okay, let me speak honestly. In the past, whenever I heard someone say that writing down the food you are consuming each day is critical to maintaining a healthy weight, I used to roll my eyes. Of course, now that I am getting older (shhhh!) I realize the importance of food journaling. If my weight begins to fluctuate, it is always because I am underestimating my food consumption. When I write down what foods I am eating, I am accountable to that piece of paper...the diary does not lie! :) Not sure how many calories you should be consuming to lose or maintain your weight? This handy little calorie calculator will help you determine your personal requirements:


Friday, May 6, 2011

Ratatouille from the Grill

With summer right around the corner, I wanted to share with you one of my FAVORITE dishes! Ratatouille from the Grill. Darren and I probably make this once a week, it’s so good! You can change up the vegetables too. We’ve added asparagus to it and it’s so Delicious!! This dish is also perfect if you have company coming over because it’s served at room temperature, so you can get all the grilling done ahead of time! This recipe is from William Sonoma, Complete grilling book.

Ratatouille from the Grill
1 large eggplant
Salt for sprinkling, plus 1 tsp. salt
1 large yellow onion
2 zucchini or yellow crookneck squashes
2 red or green bell peppers
8-10 large fresh mushrooms
¾ extra virgin olive oil
1 large tomato, peeled, seeded, and chopped
3 tablespoons whit wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic minced
½ tsp freshly ground pepper
½ cup chopped frosh basil

Prepare Grill
~Trim the eggplant & then cut crosswise into slices about ½ inch thick. Place in a colander & salt liberally to draw out the moisture. Let stand for 30 minutes.
~Rinse the eggplant slices and pat them dry with paper towels. Set aside.
~Prepare the remaining vegetables as follows: Cut the onion into slices ½ inch thick. Half the squashes lengthwise. Cut the bell peppers into rings 1 inch thick, removing the seeds and ribs. Trim the stem ends of the mushrooms.
~Arrange the vegetable on the grill, turning two or three times and brushing them with ½ cup od the olive oil, until tender crisp when pierced, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the grill and let cool. Cut into bite size pieces.
~Meanwhile, in a large serving bowl, stir or whisk together the remaining ¼ cup olive oil, the tomato, vinegar, garlic, the 1 teaspoon salt, the pepper, and the basil. Add the vegetables to the tomato mixture and toss gently to combine. Serve at room temperature.

I serve this along with brown rice. It is the perfect summer dish, so light and healthy!


Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Mind Body Connection

Marni is our special guest on our March 28, 2011 blogradio show, "The Mind-Body Connection." You connect with Marni on Twitter @Marni_MPG or by heading to www.mindworksperformancegroup.com

Marni Bell

Values kindness and tolerance. She is a passionate student of the lessons that life has to offer. She is also a student of Western Michigan University and is currently progressing in her major of Psychology. Her goal is to successfully achieve a PhD in Behavioral Analysis. MLB has been employed in the field of Speech-Language Pathology for twelve years as a Speech Pathology Assistant. She has studied the art of energy healing and is a certified Level III Reiki Master. Through the enriching experiences of therapy, as well as a quest for personal growth, she has developed a special interest in the profound ability of the human brain to overcome adversity and illness. She is determined to deliver this message with the tools for success, to help enrich the current and future lives of the youth.

Marni is a mother of two sons, Kurtis and Kyle, and a mother-in-law to Bethany Bell. Her son Kurtis is 22 and pursuing his engineering degree at Grand Valley State University. Kyle is 17 and a junior in High School. Kyle wishes to attend medical school following high school graduation. Marni considers her sons to be her master teachers.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Portion Control!

So often, we hear health advisors telling us to watch our portions. But, how do we do that? It is critical to understand what an appropriate portion size of food is to maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle. So here is a simple way to remember your portion sizes, by using your hand as a guideline:

-Protein portions should be the size of your palm. Protein can be found in animal products, like fish, meats, and cottage cheese. Some veggies with protein include beans, tofu, and wheat glutens.

-Fats are important, but also very dense, so match portions to the size of your thumb. Good fat sources are avocados, olive oil, nuts, and seeds.

Fist=Fruits, Grains, etc.
-Your bread, fruit, cereal, rice, and grain portions should be about the same size of your closed fist. (Whole grains are always the best choice).

-Open your hand and spread your fingers as wide as you can. That is a good vegetable portion. Raw vegetables are loaded with fiber and nutrients, and contain very few calories.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Healthy Snacks for Traveling

Our next blog radio show, to be aired on Monday, February 28, is dedicated to the topic of how to make healthy choices while traveling. Here is a list of some healthy snack options to take with you on the road:

String cheese
Flavored water
100 Calorie snack packs
Protein Bars: Larabar or P90X bars are my personal favorites
Whole grain crackers
Lowfat popcorn
Mini cereal boxes of cheerios or a high-fiber cereal
Laughing cow cheese

**Tip** You can always put together snack combos at home, and place into snack baggies. This is a great way to portion control your servings.

Enjoy! Do you have any healthy snack ideas that are portable for work or travel? Please share!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Darren's favorite Chicken Chili!

My husband is always bugging me about making his favorite chicken chili.   I don't mind making this one because it's VERY healthy and SUPER delicious!

Here is a fabulous recipe for a healthy chicken chili from my FAVORITE cook Ina Garten:
·      4 cups chopped yellow onions (3 onions)
·      1/8 cup good olive oil, plus extra for chicken
·      1/8 cup minced garlic (2 cloves)
·      2 red bell peppers, cored, seeded, and large-diced
·      2 yellow bell peppers, cored, seeded, and large-diced
·      1 teaspoon chili powder
·      1 teaspoon ground cumin
·      1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes, or to taste
·      1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
·      2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more for chicken
·      2 (28-ounce) cans whole peeled plum tomatoes in puree, undrained
·      1/4 cup minced fresh basil leaves
·      4 split chicken breasts, bone in, skin on
·      Freshly ground black pepper
For serving:
·      Chopped onions, corn chips, grated cheddar, sour cream
Cook the onions in the oil over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the bell peppers, chili powder, cumin, red pepper flakes, cayenne, and salt. Cook for 1 minute. Crush the tomatoes by hand or in batches in a food processor fitted with a steel blade (pulse 6 to 8 times). Add to the pot with the basil. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Rub the chicken breasts with olive oil and place them on a baking sheet. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast the chicken for 35 to 40 minutes, until just cooked. Let cool slightly. Separate the meat from the bones and skin and cut it into 3/4-inch chunks. Add to the chili and simmer, uncovered, for another 20 minutes. Serve with the toppings, or refrigerate and reheat gently before serving.


Monday, February 14, 2011

New Year's Resolutions!!

Did you make a New Year's resolution? If so, are you sticking to it or have you already scrapped it? No judging here; so let's hear your goals! People who claim their goals publicly are far more likely to achieve them. Also, have you ever tried a fad diet? We want to hear your experiences. Please share.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Welcome to our blog! We are couple of fun loving gals who are passionate about health, fitness, and overall personal well-being. We hope to inspire you to achieve your personal fitness goals. Do you have a weight loss or body transformation success story? Please share it with us! Are you struggling with where to begin your fitness journey? How can we help?

You can check out our blog radio show at http://blogtalkradio.com/talkfit1.  We offer a fitness chat every other Monday at noon. Check out our radio website for details on show times. Have a topic idea for our show? Please throw it at us...we LOVE hearing ideas from our listeners.

We look forward to talking fitness with you!