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Sunday, 29 May 2016

Meal Planning 1-Doh!-1

So, as part of my Beachbody Programs, they always come with a meal plan for optimal results.  Which I promptly ignore, and go about our normal healthy-ish diet and last minute mish mash dinners of whatever is in the fridge after a long day at work, and the exact same lunches every-single-day because I run out of time in the morning.

Even making a 3 minute smoothie before leaving for work can be a catastrophe some mornings.

Yes - I could make these things the night before...but it never happens. There are too many other fun things to do after work. Like biking, reading, or Netflix.

So, Husband exclaimed a few weeks ago that we should hone in our diets so we can gain optimal biking results.

Thank you, Pinterest and Beachbody for giving me full meal plans for 5 days.  5 days good wholesome nutrition, 2 days, try our best to eat well, with the occasional poutine slip-up.  Poutine *is* Protein and Carbs though, so you really can't exclude it from the weekly diet plan.

So, Week 1, I prepped a Meal Plan designed for the 22 Minute Hard Corps (1200-1500 level) to see how easy it was.

These are the ingredients
I scoured our freezer for meat substitutions (use what we have first), and had to make two trips to ensure I had all the ingredients.

3.5 hours lately (90 minute prep time - my behind!), it was done.  I feel I was so slow because I was also reusing dishes and cleaning them in-between.

I made 10 breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and cut up vegetables for easy snacking (with hummus on the side to encourage fullness and give some yummy taste to the veggies).  I'm SO glad we recently got a slew of extra lunch containers a few weeks ago, as these came in VERY handy.

Organized food!
I have also found it really difficult lately to motivate myself to cook or get lunches ready.  I don't know how many days in a row I had chili for lunch.  It's yummy and nutritious (I make it and freeze it in big batches), but change is good.  Heck, I work in an industry where it's constantly changing! 

I also enjoy trying new recipes, so this meal planning this is up my alley.  


The 22 Minute Hard Corps Meal Plan Menu:

Breakfast: Spinach Egg Cups with Steel Cut Oats and 1 cup sliced strawberries
Shakeology Snack: Shakeology with 1 cup frozen raspberries or ½ banana and 2 tsp. nut butter
Lunch (M/W/F): Sesame Chicken with Asparagus
Lunch (T/Th): Quinoa Shrimp Cocktail
Dinner (M/W/F): Bison and Broccoli Stir Fry
Dinner (T/Th): Grilled Turkey Lettuce Wrap
Snacks: 8 walnuts sprinkled with cinnamon and cayenne or hummus with lettuceretty healthy meals!
Here`s my take on week 1:

Breakfast:  I don`t like spinach, but thought this egg recipe would be acceptable. Nope - it was so awful I ended up giving it to the birds; the oatmeal and strawberries were good though!

Husband enjoyed the egg muffins better once he added salt and pepper.

Lunches: I enjoyed both and they were quite filling!

Husband missed out on the Shrimp Salad, which I found was a nice change - filling, yet super healthy.

Dinners: These were also both quite tasty.  I substituted the bison with ground beef we already had in the freezer, and added in veggies and just used ground turkey for the turkey and lettuce wraps.  I am not pretending to eat a burger with lettuce buns.


The directions are straight forward, and I can do what I love best - multi task!  While one thing is cooking, I'm prepping something else, and at the end, we have 30 meals. And save at least an hour every day in time.  And have a healthy dinner ready in 1 minute (heating time) when we get back from cycling after work.

I LOVE the free time after and before work - it has relieved a lot of anxiety and stress.

There isn`t old food in the fridge going to waste, and it definitely saves while grocery shopping. I like having lists and direction, so this makes Systic happy.

I do not say this anymore! 

We both lost a few pounds each, and were full all day long.  If we snacked, veggies and hummus was suffice.

Week 2 was a slight disaster with a Quinoa and Egg casserole - it was so dry and blech - these pucks just went into the garbage.  I admitted it was awful before Husband sighed in relief that he felt it was equally awful.  The lunches and dinners were delightful, however - and only a few substitutions were made with items we already had.

Week 3 I am going to prep today - PREP DAY SUNDAYS!

We have discussed breakfast, and are going with one egg muffin, oatmeal, and fruit.  I`m going to go with the original 21 Day Fix Egg muffin recipe that I used briefly last summer to get more protein into our diets.

And I`m going to use rice and tofu in the Turkey & Cauliflower rice recipe - again - we want to eat healthy, but not compromise taste.  Gagging down healthy food that just doesn`t taste good will not promote longevity of this plan and our health goals.

The rest of the meals are acceptable, and should taste divine!

For anyone wanting to cut down their grocery budget, time spent cooking every day, or meet fitness goals, this whole meal planning thing really IS all it`s cracked up to be!

Just do it!

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

My Topbox Review - April 2015

April's Topbox was full of some new products from companies I have not tried in the past.

For $12 a month, you get 4-5 beauty product samples (one is usually full size), either a surprise or chosen brand box.

OFRA Cosmetics - Lipliner

Water resistant pencil suitable for the most sensitive eye & lip areas.  Created with a synthetic beeswax base for a smooth, soft and long lasting application.

1.13g $17.25.  Available at 

I don't use lip liner, so this is another eye liner to add to my collection.  

Initially, I found the tip quick sharp the first few applications, but it is getting better with use.

I use it with light pink and beige/cream eye shadow as a change from my normal black eye liner. 

It doesn't leave residue on my lower brow like some other eye liners, so that in itself makes it a decent product. 

PUR-Lisse - Blue Lotus 4-in-11 Eye Adore Serum

Apply day and night, using your ring finger, lightly tap (to reduce tugging) a small pump of serum around eye area.  

15ml $65.  Available at

This eye cream is a medium thickness that requires very little to cover the under, side, and lower parts of the eye skin.  

After using this for almost a month, I've barely gone through 1/3 of the sample bottle.

It has a light scent to it, but nothing irritating.  

It dries quickly, and I can definitely see the fine lines around my eyes diminish after application.

If it weren't for the price point, I would definitely add this to my regular skin care routine!

Orofluido - Beauty Elixir

For all hair types, with a pure luxuriance that envelops your hair.  Three organic natural oils in an equisite mixture with a pleasant silky texture, that absorbed rapidly, leaving no residue in the hair.  
25ml $17.81.  Find a salon near you at

Normally hair oils don't like my hair, leaving it lank and greasy looking.  My hair is thin and long - not a good combination with oil.  

This mixture has a lovely sweet scent - which covered up a shampoo/conditioner combination I'm currently reviewing (and don't like the smell of). 

I put about 3 globs of the thick oil in my hair ends, and brush it throughout my hair for even distribution. 

It leaves my hair looking healthier and swooshy - whether or not I have time to blow dry it in the morning.

I would definitely incorporate this into my beauty regime once this is finished. 

Lise Watier Cosmetiques Inc. - Sublimessence High Concentration Age-Defying Serum

Apply on clean skin, morning and night, before your regular skincare routine.  Smooth in gently all over face.  

28ml $84.  Available at The Bay, Sears, Shoppers Drug Mart, and

This serum has a delicious scent that doesn't linger under the nose or on the skin.  

It is a thin-medium thickness serum, which requires a couple of finger fulls to cover my entire face.  In 2 weeks, the sample size was finished, therefore the full size would last less than 2 months.

It dries extremely quickly - in under a minute - leaving me a bit more time to get my skincare routine completed in an orderly and efficient manner.  

I haven't really noticed any difference from my normal serums, so it isn't much better than the $15-$20 serums I have from companies like Yalmeh and Garnier.