Monthly Archives: September 2012

Don’t Wait Until Spring

 

I want to address a topic that comes up every year. It happens to many people. It’s not something we like to admit.

 

 

Don’t lie. This may have been you at some point. Heck, it may happen every year! Fall comes around and you start to fall off your fitness routine. By the time you’re deep in winter, you realize the holiday eating got a little out of hand. You also realize, you don’t remember the last time you exercised. Before you know it, it’s almost spring and you have a mini panic attack because you know that “getting back in shape” really doesn’t happen in a couple weeks. Sorry, it’s not possible to do a healthy, complete body transformation for that Cancun trip next week. The effort is good, in theory, but going to the gym every night for two weeks won’t make up for months nutritional and fitness negligence.

Before anyone gets sensitive about the topic, let me clarify.  Not everyone cares about having that flat tummy, or define back. Not everyone has a certain look that they want for those warm spring and summer months. That is perfectly fine. I am a strong supporter of being comfortable with yourself. This post is not me telling everyone that they should all be obsessed with what they might look like in a bathing suit, therefore, they should only eat lettuce from now till’ May. Before you start thinking that, slow down, partner.

  •  First: The way I approach fitness and nutrition is relative to who I am speaking or working with. It’s all about making small and sustainable changes that are appropriate to you, at the time. Folks who have a consisten fitness routine and eat relatively clean, would make different adjustments than someone who watches hours of tv every day and eats fast food for most meals.
  •  Second: I don’t think it’s a bad thing to want to look good. It’s perfectly fair for one to want a fit body. True, obsessing over how one looks is no good. However, there is nothing wrong with wanting to let the inner sexy beast out. Improving our level of fitness and nutrition and watching our body get stronger as a result, is rewarding. Inspiration  comes from many places. If this is one of those sources, no problem.

I constantly write about how important fitness is in our overall health. But, it’s okay to address what many think about, but may not share. Although, as evident on facebook and instagram, some people, just outright love to post pictures of themselves in the mirror in workout clothing. Whatever works to keep motivated!

Instead of a mad dash to “get in shape” when the warm months come around, why not maintain a better baseline over the colder months? Why not keep an eye on what we eat and how active we are between now and spring? This way, we will be fully ready for bathing suit season. And, oh yeah, there is the whole being healthier and stronger and getting sick less often benefit, to eating right and staying active. Can’t forget about that. The occasional holiday indulgence is okay. After all, we should enjoy life. Just try not to
go overboard, champ.

When it starts to get chilly. When the days become shorter. When all you want to do is put on sweats and a sweater and watch Netflix all day. It’s okay to do a bit of that, but remember, there is work to be done. You’ll thank yourself in a few months.

 

Look how happy this couple is that they didn’t forget about their nutrition and fitness over the winter months.

 

I, myself, will be doing the best I can to be consistent with nutrition and fitness throughout the fall and winter months. Mostly because I like how it makes me feel and I like how it positively affects my life. Also, seeing hard work pay off, is motivating. If you are on a similar journey, let’s keep each other motivated! Share with other FM readers! Comment in posts or share your thoughts on our Facebook wall!

If you would like to share your progress with pictures, follow and comment @fitmenatlity on instragram!

Fall and Winter, we aren’t scared.

Healthy FitMentality Pancakes!!!

 

I am on a constant crusade to prove that just because you want to eat good, nutritious food, doesn’t mean you love food less than others who aren’t quite as concerned with the nutrient value of their food. Yes, I try to eat clean as often as possible. Yes, I eat gluten free as often as possible. But that doesn’t mean I don’t love food!! I’ve posted and written about healthier takes on pizzas, chips, smoothies and even protein bars.

The other day, I had a hankerin’ for some pancakes. Many of my friends love going out for breakfast and getting a big pile of pancakes. I love breakfast, as well. However, since I started eating gluten free, and being more aware of what food I put in my body, I hadn’t had pancakes for quite a while. Knowing that one can make almost any food they love, with alternative ingredients, I set out to bake some gluten free, not too ingredient dense, pancakes. The result was awesome.

The term “healthy” or “healthier” is subjective. I’ve written about this and it’s something I think about often. However, compared to most commonly found pancake mix, it’s pretty clear this is a (if at the very least) health-IER take on pancakes.

Here is an example of an ingredient list to a common pancake mix found in most supermarkets.

ENRICHED BLEACHED FLOUR (BLEACHED WHEAT FLOUR, NIACIN, REDUCED IRON, THIAMIN MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID), SUGAR, LEAVENING (SODIUM BICARBONATE, SODIUM ALUMINUM PHOSPHATE, MONOCALCIUM PHOSPHATE), SALT, CALCIUM CARBONATE.

I don’t even know what some of those ingredients are, therefore, I would rather they not be in my body. However, you be the judge.

 

I looked online for recipes with the ingredients I knew I wanted to use (oatmeal and almond flour) and made some tweaks.

 

The following is the recipe for FitMentality Pancakes:

 

Ingredients:

Organic Lactose-free Milk (1 Cup)

Oatmeal (1 Cup)

Protein Powder (2 scoops)

Almond Flour (3/4 Cup)

Organic Free Range Eggs (4)

Sea Salt (1 tsp)

Baking Powder (1 tsp)

Organic Blueberries (1 cup, or so)

Coconut Oil

Cinnamon (optional)

The amounts don’t have to be exact, but this recipe worked well.

Instructions:

Turn your stove top on to about medium-ish heat.

 

While the pan is warming up, get your mix on! First, in a mixing bowl, combine the milk and oatmeal. Little by little, stir in the rest of the ingredients. The blueberries I used were thawed from being frozen, so I made sure to stir them in last, as to not make the batter too watery from the melted berry juice. With fresh blueberries, or any other berry, this would be less of a concern.

Mixing blueberries into the batter

Not too complicated, right? That’s one of the best parts of this recipe.

Once it’s all mixed together, put a bit of coconut oil into the hot pan. You get to decide how much to use. In my case, I used raw organic coconut oil that was a bit solid in the container. I took out a small chunk with a butter knife and melted it on the pan. Then, with a small cup or measuring cup, pour some of the batter into the pan, just like you would any other pancake. You’ll notice the batter is a bit more watery than most pancake batters, but never fear. The batter firms up once it starts to cook. How much batter per pancake is up to you. It depends on the actual size of the pancakes that you would like. In my case, I made some pretty big ones, that covered most of the surface of the pan.

Pouring batter onto the pan.

 

How do you know when to flip? Good question. That is something all breakfast cooks have had to deal with since the beginning of time. Or, at least, since pancakes were invented. A good rule of thumb, is to wait until the edges of the pancake seem to firm up. Also, if you give the pan a shake back and forth, and the center seems to be less watery, then you can try to flip the pancake over. You’ll notice, as well, that if you are able to slide your spatula under the pancake without it falling apart, then the firmness is about right. If you do not follow the previous advice, and try to slide the spatula under the pancake when it is still too watery, it just won’t work. When you are able to pick up the pancake in one piece on the spatula, do the best you can to turn it upside down, and still land IN the pan. It cooks much slower on the floor.

Once you have flipped the pancake and have given it a few minutes to cook on that side, it will be done! Put it on to an empty plate and repeat with the rest of the batter. When you are done, you get a serious pile of good quality flap jacks.

 

 

 

You can tweak the recipe in any way you like. You can use different types of berries, or even use different types of milk. The taste will just be a bit different depending on the substitutions you make. These pancakes don’t taste exactly the same as the ones you make from batter bought at the store, but I still think they taste good. An almond and oatmeal base is right up my alley. There are also different types of flour you can use. In the future, I will try to make these with a Quinoa flour. If you would like, you can add some sugar to the batter, if you wanted it to be a bit sweeter.

I sprinkled a bit of cinnamon and drizzled some honey over the final product. It.was.amazing.

Try it out!

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What fruits and vegetables should REALLY be organic?

 

We know that buying organic is the way to go. However, we can’t always do so. Depending on the situation, choice and price CAN be a factor. Though there are ways to buy organic cheaper than many know, I understand barriers exist. When you may wonder “what fruits and vegetables that I buy should I really buy organic, and which ones would it be okay if they were conventionally grown?”, look no further. I found a nice picture that shows what foods you should make sure to buy organic, and which may have less pesticides. Notice the crying vegetables that have high pesticide content. I’m sorry, veggies and fruits. I feel your pain :(.

 

I do not own this image. This is purely for educational purposes. If you own this image, and would like me to remove it, please let me know.

 

I do believe all organic is the way to, but, when it’s not possible at the moment, refer to this picture!

 

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