get those greens! 21DF green container ideas

Let's talk green containers. I know it can be tricky to get all those veggies in!

I have to give a shout-out to my current favorite leafy green ARUGULA! Arugula is SO good for you, has a rich and delicious flavor, and seems to keep longer than other lettuces.

Arugula is a great source of folic acid and Vitamins A, C and K, as well as high levels of iron and copper. Arugula - nicknamed the Salad Rocket - is also a hydrating food!  

I like to keep a box of organic baby arugula in the fridge at all times. When I get the mid day munchies, I put some arugula in a bowl, splash some vinegar and lemon juice on it, and nom nom nom YUM!

Here are some other ideas for getting in those green containers:
-celery sticks (top with hummus or almond butter)
-sliced cucumbers (add vinegar yum!)
-green beans
-baked kale chips
-sweet peppers
-broccoli/cauliflower/carrot/snowpea grab bag
-baked/grilled brussel sprouts

Sneak in even more greens by adding sprouts to your wrap or sandwich, adding a handful of spinach or kale to your Shakeo, making spiralized zucchini "noodles" or spaghetti squash instead of pasta, and using Romaine lettuce instead of tortillas on taco night or buns on burger night.

What are your favorite green container foods?

21DF 3 Day Quick Fix

For those times when you need to restart or jumpstart your healthy eating, we like the 21 Day Fix 3 Day Quick Fix. The 3 Day Quick Fix is a meal plan designed by Autumn Calabrese to fast-track your results by way of a very strict high protein, low-carb, and low-fat diet. We have tried it and it works! We saw muscle definition and weight loss in inches.

It's six meals each day for three days; one meal every 2.5 hours or so. The first two meals include your carbs (yellow container), and the last four meals are strictly protein and veggies (red and green containers). No Shakeology, no fruit, no salt. It's crucial to know your portion sizes, using the containers that come with 21 Day Fix or any other Beachbody program.

Here's the plan:

Meal 1 - BREAKFAST - steel cut oatmeal, egg whites, and 1 teaspoon of coconut oil
Meal 2 - SNACK - grilled chicken and steamed yams
Meal 3 - SNACK - steamed fish and steamed veggies
Meal 4 - LUNCH - grilled chicken and steamed veggies, 1 teaspoon of coconut oil
Meal 5 - SNACK - steamed fish and steamed veggies, 1 teaspoon of coconut oil
Meal 6 - DINNER - ground extra lean turkey and steamed veggies, 1 teaspoon of coconut oil

-We like steamed broccoli, green beans, asparagus, cauliflower, zucchini, cucumbers, or bell peppers.
-Some seasonings are okay like lemon and lime juice, or vinegar. But no salt! 
-Flavor your breakfast oatmeal with cinnamon! No sugar. 
-Drink lots of water! No soda or juice.
-Coffee or tea is allowed but do not add creamers or sweeteners.
-Keep working out but no need to alter or adjust for these 3 days.
-Take before and after photos and measurements to see your results!

The 3 Day Quick Fix is only to be followed for the three days and is not intended to replace a healthy, well-rounded diet. It is not a sustainable diet, and you should not do it more than once during the three-week program.

If you are curious about 21 Day Fix or other Beachbody programs, email your True Blue Fit Crew coach or find us on Facebook!


it's tank top tuesday! just kidding that's not a real thing. and i know it's not even tuesday. technically. but i do want to talk about tank tops so go with it? thanks.

i wear a tank top practically every single day, and i have accumulated quite the collection over the years. tank tops are my go-to for working out, casual outings, bathing suit cover ups, and even sometimes i can dress up a tank by adding a cardigan and nice jewelry! maybe you can relate to my love for close-fitting sleeveless tops? i'm feeling especially practical today and sharing my favorite tank tops, how i wear tank tops, and how i store tank tops. how i wear tank tops: every morning when i get dressed for my workout, i put on a sports bra, a fitted tank, and then a looser fitting tank or t-shirt. the fitted tank gives a good layer of coverage. i like to use the fitted tank to add another color to the outfit, too.

when i'm not working out, i wear fitted tank tops under sweaters, sweatshirts, and most tops, again for the coverage, for a layer of color, but also for warmth. today to church i wore a fitted tank, a blousy top, and a sweater cardigan, and i was perfectly comfortable. in the summer, i will wear shorts or skirts with layers of two or even three tank tops.

my favorite tank tops:  my number one favorite tank is the Merona Women's Favorite Tank from Target (shown above, teal, shown below, gray). i have this tank in most colors. it is comfortable, fits great, washes well, and holds up it's shape and fit even after multiple wears and washes. this is not the ribbed tank. it's fitted spandex, buttery soft and stretchy, but shrink-resistant. worth the $9 pricetag. i do like the Merona ribbed tank too (shown above, blue).

another favorite is the Old Navy Tami, now called the Rib-Knit Layering Tank. (pictured black) i recommend trying different brands, finding a fitted tank that you like, and then buying it in all colors! how i store tank tops: what is the best way to store tank tops? especially when you have a growing collection? drawer or hangers? folded or rolled? this has been my biggest closet quandary. i've tried different ways of storing my tanks. in the drawer i found they would get wrinkled easily or hidden. i didn't want to put each tank top on it's own hanger - that seemed a little excessive. i think i finally found a storage system that works for me...

these are the 3 hanger types that i have for storing my tank tops. i organized my tanks into three catgories: 1) fitted solid/stripe, 2) tanks with words/logos/saying, and 3) muscle tanks (sleeveless t-shirts) each of these hangers are slim yet strong enough to hold several tank tops. i also like that i can easily see the tanks and grab the one(s) i want.

this is the Huggable Hanger Tie/Belt Hanger and i found it at Target for $6 for a 2-pack. (similar on amazon) this holds 24 tank tops by putting 2 on each "arm." on these hangers i have my solid and striped fitted tanks.

i'm still getting them all organized, but this ring-style hanger (similar on amazon) is where i will store my collection of tank tops with words/sayings/logos on them. i hang each tank by both of it's arm straps to prevent stretching and wrinkling.

and this U-shaped hanger (similar on amazon) is where i will store my muscle tanks- the style that has a collar like a t-shirt, with the sleeves cut off. 

this new storage/hanger system has been so nice! not only is it super easy to find the tank top i want to wear, but it also freed up a drawer in my dresser! 

helpful? maybe i'll share my favorite places to find fun workout tanks next tank top tuesday ;) 
tanks, yall! 

tips for healthy living // free printable

At the doctor's office this week for an annual physical, one of the TBFC coaches came home with a clean bill of health and a piece of paper with "Tips for Preventative Health"! We liked it so much we wanted to share it.

Here are the tips from Dr. Washburn, adapted for TBFC. Sure most of it might seem like common sense, but what a great reminder for everyone. These tips affirm all the things we strive to do to live a healthy life!

Print a copy for yourself! Share it with friends and loved ones. Let's live healthy!


Tips for Healthy Living

o Get 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise or 75 minutes per week of vigorous exercise to maintain hearth health as recommended by the AHA. Physical exercise has many benefits!

o Maintain a lean body mass. Strength train 1-2 times per week targeting every major muscle group. This increases HDL cholesterol and improves the body’s response to insulin.

o Minimize starch foods in the diet: bread, rice, pasta, corn, potatoes, and sugar. Whole grain bread, rice, and pasta is better. Sweet potatoes are healthier than white potatoes.

o Minimize saturated fat (animal fat) and consume lean meat like boneless skinless poultry and fish. Pork and beef in moderation.

o Eat from a farm not a factory. Shop the perimeter of the supermarket (produce and fresh foods). Avoid the center of the supermarket (processed foods).

o Read food ingredient lists. Beware of foods with ingredients that are hard to pronounce.

o Limit alcohol to no more than 1 drink per day.

o Consume low-fat or no-fat dairy products.

o Take care of your teeth. See a dentist regularly.

o Drink water. Don’t drink your calories (sodas, fancy coffee drinks, milkshakes, and “sports” drinks)

o Limit sodium intake. Avoid high fructose corn syrup. Avoid added sugar and added salt.

o Tobacco is poison. Avoid it.

o Wear sunscreen.

o Wear seatbelts.

o Take care of your eyes.

o Wear helmets and protective pads with any activity that calls for it.

o Keep firearms stored away and in a locked position and out of reach of children.

o Have an emergency safety kit in your car.

o Turn off the phone while driving.

o Pray.

o Be an active member of your community.

o Surround yourself with like-minded and encouraging people.

o Read. Do crossword puzzles. Challenge your brain regularly.

o Wash your hands.

o Use a food thermometer, wash you cutting boards, and refrigerate food within 2 hours of serving.

o Change the batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in the spring and fall.

o Learn how to swim and never swim alone.

o Conduct fire drills at home. Have a plan.

o Learn self-defense and be aware of your surroundings at all times.

o Smile and have fun. Do things that you enjoy. Make the most of every day.

o See your doctor once a year for regular checkups.

Fall Favorite Recipe: GF DF Apple Crisp

This is one of my favorite Fall-time recipes. Not only is it delicious, this Apple Crisp is easy to make and HEALTHY! This is a quick and yummy dish to take to a potluck or family gathering.

Apple Crisp (gluten free, dairy free) 

3 Honey Crisp apples, chopped
3 cups raw gluten free oats
1/2 cup oat flour (made by grinding raw oats in blender, food processor)
1 cup organic pure maple syrup
1/2 cup organic coconut oil
dash salt

1. Preheat oven to 350* F. Brush a pie dish or square casserole dish with coconut oil.
2. Pour chopped apples into the dish.
3. In a large bowl, combine oats, syrup, coconut oil, oat flour and salt. Stir to mix well.
4. Scoop the oat mixture over the top of the apples in the dish, covering all the apples like a crumble topping.
5. Bake at 350* F for 30-40 minutes. Serve warm. Enjoy!

Ingredients: all real food!

Chopped Honey Crisp apples await their destiny

Pure organic maple syrup

Gluten Free raw oats ground in my blender

Stirring it all together

Ready to go in the oven!
wait for it....

Freshly baked apple crisp just out of the oven! Smells divine!


For Your Funnel Cake Craving

Here in Texas, the big event of the season is the State Fair. And when I say big I mean HUGE! Home to Big Tex and the largest Ferris wheel in North America, the State Fair of Texas is big in square mileage, and big in Texans' traditions.

One of our family's traditions when we visit the State Fair of Texas is to share a funnel cake! They're as big as a paper plate, fried and fluffy curls piled high, topped with powdered sugar and fresh strawberries...I'm practically drooling just thinking about it. Every October, I start to crave a funnel cake the way some women crave pumpkin spice lattes.

At the same time, I want to stay healthy and be careful about the foods I put into my body. Sure, a cheat day is fine now and again, but this time of year there are so many temptations to cheat on my healthy diet! The struggle is real. 

Thankfully, I stumbled upon a healthy recipe that successfully deceives my taste buds and satisfies my funnel cake craving! I'm not kidding! You won't even believe what it is...SWEET POTATOES!

// Baked Cinnamon Honey Sweet Potato Fries {Funnel Cake Alternative}

2 large sweet potatoes, cut into fries at your desired thickness
ev olive oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
ground cinnamon
pure honey

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Gently layer the sweet potato fries in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle on the salt.

3. Evenly spread the fries on the baking sheet and bake about 15 minutes, flip the fries, then bake for another 15 minutes.

4. Remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle with cinnamon and drizzle honey. Serve warm.

Close your eyes, and pretend you're at the State Fair of Texas enjoying a giant funnel cake! Save yourself a cheat day and reap the nutritional benefits of tasty sweet potatoes. 


21DF Approved Meal Plan + Recipes

 photo by Didrik on Flickr

here is a week's worth of 21 Day Fix approved dinners:

M- Taco Turkey Lettuce Wraps
T- Crockpot Cilantro Lime Chicken over a bed of greens
W- Eggplant Turkey Burgers, grilled Brussels sprouts
H- family date night :) eat healthy from the restaurant menu!
F- Apple Chicken Sausage, baked sweet potato fries


// Taco Turkey Lettuce Wraps [modified from Fixate cookbook by Autumn Calabrese]
-cabbage (4 big leaves)
-1lb lean ground turkey seasoned with 21DF taco seasoning: 1 tsp ground chipolte chili powder, 1 dash sea salt, and 1 tsp Mexican oregano leaves, 1 tsp EVOO, and 1 cup tomato sauce
-shredded carrots
-2-3 sliced bell peppers
-salsa to taste

1. place lettuce leaves on a large serving plate
2. top evenly with taco meat, veggies, and salsa
3. roll up and enjoy!

// Crockpot Cilantro Lime Chicken 
-boneless skinless chicken breasts (1 per person)
-4 limes
-1 bunch fresh cilantro
-1 yellow onion, cubed
-1 Tsp minced garlic
-salt and pepper to taste

1. put chicken into bottom of crockpot. 4 breasts fit into my crockpot perfectly.
2. squeeze limes in the crockpot over the chicken.
3. add 1 cup of water to the crockpot.
4. add salt, pepper, garlic, and cubed onion, and cilantro to the crockpot, on top of the chicken.
5. cook on low for 4-6 hours.
6. when cooked, take out the cilantro. using forks, shred the chicken in the crockpot.
7. serve and enjoy!

// Eggplant Turkey Burgers [modified from Fixate]
-1lb lean ground turkey
-1 yellow onion, finely chopped
-2 large egg whites
-1 eggplant, sliced into 8 rounds
-1 bell pepper, sliced
-1 tsp EVOO
-1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

1. preheat grill or broiler to High.
2. combine turkey, chopped onion and egg whites in a medium bowl and mix well.
3. use the mixture to make 4 burger patties.
4. grill or broil patties until no longer pink in the middle. set aside and keep warm.
5. brush eggplant and bell pepper with EVOO.
6. grill or broil eggplant for 2-3 minutes or until lightly browned.
7. place a slice of eggplant on each of four serving plates. top each with a turkey patty and bell pepper slices. sprinkle with vinegar and top with a second slice of eggplant.
8. serve and enjoy!

stay tuned for more 21DF approved weekly meal plans from TrueBlueFitCrew!