Monthly archives of “October 2014

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Have a happy and healthy Halloween

Last Halloween we wrote about fun and healthy alternatives to give to trick-or-treaters. This year, I have a few more fun ideas to add to the list.  Don’t worry, I didn’t forget about all you candy lovers out there. I have some tips to follow for healthier sweets.

In the past, my family has opted for Milky Ways and Kit-Kat bars for treats. This Halloween we are  trying something new by switching sugary sweets for toys. A few of my families’ giveaways are going to be:

  • Bubbles
  • Glow sticks/necklaces
  • Play Dough

The glow sticks are not only fun to wear, they help others see the kids in the dark.

Now for the sweet part…candy!

Not all candy is created equal and you can have healthier options for treats without the kids even noticing! Some healthier options for Halloween treats are:

  • Swap dark chocolate for milk chocolate
  • Give mini versions of your favorite sweets instead of ‘King’ size candy bars
  • Sugar free gum or mints

Now you’re ready for a happy and healthy Halloween! Feel free to share some of your favorite goodies with me below.

caption-arrow  Feature photo byEmbajada de los Estados

small win
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Don’t forget to celebrate the small things

Setting long-term goals are great, but what about the small wins that get you to achieve those long-term ones?

I know that I can get caught up in achieving the big win – like losing weight by a certain date or traveling around the world. But don’t forget to celebrate the small wins that help you reach your ultimate goals.

These can be anything from:

  • Taking the stairs instead of the elevator
  • Drinking water instead of a soda for lunch
  • Working an extra day to save up for that around the world vacation
  • Eating an apple instead of cookie for a snack
  • Running an extra 5 minutes to burn more calories

Celebrating the small wins can spark your excitement for getting to your end goals. So give yourself a high-five, or buy new workout clothes to help celebrate the small things that you have done!

What are some small wins that you have accomplished lately?

caption-arrow  Feature photo byRich

green veg champion
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Become a green veggie champion

Getting my veggies in for the day always has been a struggle, and so when I get a salad, I feel like a green veggie champion. What I mean by a green veggie champion is that I feel like I am putting something healthy into my body.

Unfortunately, not all salads are created equal and can sneak up on you with added calories and fat.  In fact, many fast food and restaurant salads have more fat and calories than a McDonald’s Big Mac.

To give you a baseline, a Big Mac has about 550 calories  and 10 grams of saturated fat (the kind you don’t want in your diet).

Some of your favorite salads like the Cobb, chicken Caesar, and taco salads can have more than 1,000 calories and varying range of saturated fat. What makes these salads pack on the calories and fat? Toppings and dressing.

Some toppings that you should lighten up on are croutons, bacon, cheese and sunflower seeds.

Options to load up on are tomatoes, onions, peppers, mushrooms and cucumbers.

Dressings can be tricky, so try not to poor on the dressing. Instead,  try dipping your fork in the dressing before taking a bite.

You can make your salad as healthy or unhealthy as you choose.  Be a green veggie champion by adding as many healthy toppings as you can!

caption-arrow  Feature photo by Garen Meguerian

thankful challenge
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The Grateful Challenge

When was the last time you stopped to think about what you are grateful for?

My family has a tradition around Thanksgiving and Christmas to go around the table and say what we are thankful for. This always makes me appreciate my family so much more, but it  also makes me wonder why we limit ourselves to just the holiday seasons to tell each other.

The challenge this week is to write down something you are thankful for each day. Write it down in a journal, on a piece of paper, or on your computer. Just thinking about these and writing them down will help lift your mood.

I will share one of mine with you now. I am thankful that I have the opportunity to write these posts and share my thoughts my with. Kind of cheesy I know, but to me the small things make all the difference.

If you feel up to it, share something you are grateful for, and see how it lifts your mood!

caption-arrow  Feature photo by John

football challege blog
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Tailgate Recipe Challenge

Football season has arrived, which means all those great tailgating foods are here too!

The only downside is that I have been trying to be more conscious of what I eat. At first I thought this would mean that I would not get to eat the chicken wings and potato skins, but I have came to realize that this could be a great challenge opportunity!

So the challenge is to create recipes that are healthier options of those tailgate favorites. I found some great ideas on Pinterest, that you can check out too, if you feel like you are up for the task.

Let me know what recipes worked for you so I can try them out  for the next game!

caption-arrow  Feature photo byMary Helen Leonard