Thursday, June 13, 2013

Tasty Thursday: Cinnamon Rolls

These cinnamon rolls are AMAZING!!  They are lower in calorie and fat than one you can get in the grocery store or gas station.  Yes, Kwik Trip gas stations around here and cinnamon rolls are an evil mix for me!  Here's a healthier version just for you!


For roll dough:
3 Cups Carbquik Baking Mix
1/2 Cup Sweetener (Truvia, Splenda, Ideal or whatever you use)
1 cup warm water
1 T sugar (will be eaten by yeast)
1 packet yeast
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 T Vital Wheat Gluten (super cheap and can be bought at supermarket, found near flour)

For filling:
1/2 cup Sweetener (Truvia, Splenda, Ideal, etc.)
1/2 cup brown sugar substitute (Ideal Brown, Brown sugar twin, etc.) (could likely use another 1/2 cup reg. sweetener)
1 T + 1 tsp. melted butter

For icing:
1 oz. Neufchatel cheese, softened in microwave
3 T half and half
1-2 tsp. water
1/2 cup Sweetener (I recommend Splenda granules as the granules will dissolve)
1 tsp. vanilla


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Prep yeast by dissolving sugar into warm water and stirring in yeast. Allow to proof (get bubbly).
3. In large bowl (preferably stand mixer with kneading attachment), add Carbquik, sweetener, vital wheat gluten and vanilla. Slowly pour in proofed yeast mixture and mix until a dough forms. Knead for about 5-7 minutes (can do it by hands if you need to).
4. Use a tiny bit of Carbquik to "flour" your counter and roll out dough 'til it's about 1/4 - 1/2 inch thick (get it as rectangular as you can).
5. Mix filling ingredients into a paste and spread onto rolled-out dough. This might take a while because the paste is thick, but make sure you get some on every inch of dough.
6. Carefully roll the dough into a log.
7. Cut the log into 12 slices, about 1/2-1 inch thick each (depending on how long it is). Place the slices (rolls) into a greased cake or pie pan with sides touching. Discard the ends of the log if needed.
8. Cover with a paper towel and put on the stove (no burners on) to allow to very slightly rise for about 15 minutes. The rolls will only rise slightly.
8. Bake at 350 for approximately 15-18 minutes or until rolls are golden.
9. While rolls bake, prepare icing. Use whip attachment on mixer to beat together half and half, neufchatel cheese, water and vanilla until smooth. Add in sweetener and beat for about 2 minutes to make sure it completely dissolves.
10. Remove rolls from oven and spread icing over the top.


Makes 12 rolls. Each has 120 calories, 4 net carbs, 11 grams of fiber, 7 grams of fat and 5 g protein per roll.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

How to Lose Weight on the Body by Vi Program

Disclaimer: I am NOT a certified nutritionist nor should this post be taken as professional advice. Please consult with your doctor before starting ANY health and nutrition program that you have questions about.

I have found that many folks COMPLETELY replace 2 main meals a day with the a shake. Which is what you are essentially instructed to do. HOWEVER, you must pay attention to the fact that if you mix the body by Vi shake powder (90 calories) with just 8oz of fat free milk (90-100 calories)… you are just not consuming enough calories for that to be considered a full meal. The results…. you get hungry, you eat whatever is in sight and you throw the shakes out the window (hopefully not literally) because “it doesn’t work”.

But, it is guaranteed to work… if you do it right… read on!

You need to look at the WHOLE picture logically when embarking on ANY nutritional program for weight loss. At the end of the day, your body still needs a certain amount of calories (among other nutrients, but we will talk calories only for now), just to be able to function properly throughout the day. Taking away more calories than you actually NEED (and I am talking less than what you need to produce ENERGY), will put your body in starvation mode. What happens then is that it starts to SAVE what you are feeding it in the form of fat so that it can utilize it for energy later. In essence, you are not accomplishing anything healthy when you do this. Plus you are gonna be hungry… or what I came up with for myself - HANGRY (Hungry and angry!).

To lose weight, you have to eat fewer calories than your body uses. Calories are the amount of energy in the food you eat. Some foods have more calories than others. For example, foods that are high in fat and sugar are also high in calories. If you eat more calories than your body uses, the extra calories will be stored as body excess fat.

A pound of fat is about 3,500 calories. To lose 1 pound of fat in a week, you have to eat 3,500 fewer calories (that is 500 fewer calories a day), or you have to “burn off” an extra 3,500 calories. You can burn off calories by exercising or just by being more active. And for many people, you can also burn more calories if your METABOLISM is working at its optimal speed! (here is where the Visalus prgram comes in handy as it helps in this area).

So yes, eat less. I know. Genius discovery. LOL. The point with Visalus shakes is that not all calories are created equal. So in essence you can consume a 240 calorie candy bar, but your body is not going to process that in the same way it would a more nutritional alternative, such as the shakes (or any other healthier alternative than the candy bar).

YOUR GOAL TO SUCCEED WITH THIS PROGRAM: FIND WHAT YOUR TOTAL DAILY CALORIE ALLOWANCE IS FOR YOU then stick to eating up to that number every day and include the shakes and whatever you put IN IT or eat with it as part of that total.

Here is a link to a calorie calculator that will give you an idea of your daily goals. I have no connection to this one, it is just an easy to use one that I came across

PS: The ingredients in the shakes will help stimulate weight loss and curb cravings, that’s the beauty of its proprietary formula.

To make the most out of your Body by Vi program, use the shakes as you would any other meal and INCLUDE that calorie (and protein, and fiber, etc.. ) count into your daily calories allowance. All your main meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) should be about the same number of calories with maybe 1 or 2 snacks in between (as long as the total doesn’t go over your daily quota). Some people prefer to eat 6 smaller meals a day. Whatever works for you. I myself, replace breakfast and dinner.

The BEST meal to start your shakes with is BREAKFAST. I know, here we go again, but it is no joke, breakfast IS the most important meal of the day. I know MANY people who have lost weight JUST replacing their muffin with the shakes or even having shake instead of “nothing” for breakfast. It makes THAT big a difference!

In a nutshell, make sure that you are not JUST drinking the shake with milk as your SOLE meal replacement (it's ok to do this if you are using it as a snack). Either add enough other healthy items to your lunch, like a salad or a reasonable small meal to be eating sufficient calories and protein in your day or you can also add other items TO your shake, which is what a lot of people do, to make it a heartier replacement. Look on this blog for many recipes and ideas!!

So, figure out your daily calorie allowance first (here is that calculator, then grab your shake kit of choice and start eating healthier meals that are guaranteed to help you reach your weight goals. If you are eating enough and you are staying under your daily limit, you won’t be hungry and you will lose weight naturally.

Here is a list of some of the foods I eat aside from my Body by Vi shakes every day. Most of these are “slow carb” items because your body takes longer to digest them and will keep you full longer (cus they have more protein): eggs (anyway you like them is fine), low sodium canned black beans (rinsed and heated), pinto beans (rinsed and heated), toasted ham sandwiches and sometimes with low fat cheese melted, salads galore, veggies galore, pickles (I just love pickles), chicken (pretty much any way you like it), jenni-o ground turkey tacos, salmon (sparingly because of the mercury), subway subs (6 inch roast beef or ham or turkey), canned tuna in water. I will also splurge occasionally, then go right back to my program immediately without much impact. I do not do desserts often though (unless its my birthday then BRING ON THE PEANUT BUTTER MARSHMALLOW BARS!).

If you stick to a routine, you will find it much easier to divert and return to it. So pick a few meals you can live with and fully enjoy, add the shakes, and GOOD LUCK! And hey, if you just need a day off… TAKE IT… then come right back to your routine. Pretty soon, if you are eating the right things, you will feel so good, light and energized that you won’t want to go back to your old habits!

BEST OF LUCK and I hope this helps guide you a little bit so you too can be successful with the Body by Vi program!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Challenge Group Starting JUNE 17th!!!!

For the next 90 days we will be pushing ourselves harder, eating healthier, getting tighter and harder, and starting 2013 Summer on the right foot.....the fit foot!

It's amazing what can happen with some support and accountability!  I have a couple Fitness Challenge Groups going on right now and I have another on starting June 17th.  I cannot explain how much I love these groups!  Watching people change in 90 days is amazing!  It is SO much harder to do things alone.  With these Challenge Groups, you find support and people who understand.  These groups aren't just for losing weight -- it's becoming the best person you can be!  It doesn't matter if you have a few pounds to lose, more significant weight or wanting to tone.  We can all get healthier!

This is how we will do it:
1.  First, join our private Facebook Group for workouts, motivation & tips throughout the challenge.
Throughout the 90 days, you will see several workouts & tips posted to this blog or on the Facebook Page and also the Facebook Group  These workouts and tips will help you stay active and be a resource for you to transform your body in this challenge.
If you have the best transformation in this 90 day challenge, you could win the weight loss prizes listed in the group!
You will also have to keep an eye out on all social media sites for chances to win entries into the raffle!  They may be posted on this WebsiteFacebookTwitter or Instagram!  Follow me on all these sites for the best chances of earning extra raffle entries!
Earn entries into the raffle to win the raffle prizes listed in the GROUP!!!

2. We will do a workout Monday through Friday and push hard to go faster and do more. We will not cut corners. We will not quit. We will not substitute (unless absolutely necessary). We will kill it and we will progress our bodies to the ultimate goal. If you are trying to lose more than 10 lbs, you will add a run (or some other sort of cardio) after any workout not involving a run.  In the group, I will post a 10-15 minute workout you can do IN YOUR HOME!!

3. We will drink the Vi-shakes everyday. If you are trying to lose more than 20 lbs, you should replace 2 meals a day with a Vi-shake and have a balanced 3rd meal. If you are trying to lose less than 20 lbs or want to get rid of that last layer of pudge, you should replace 1 meal a day (I do lunch) with a Vi-shake with an optional 2nd shake post-workout for optimum muscle growth and health. If you are underweight and are trying to only build muscle or if you are nursing and should not cut calories, you will add a Vi-shake to your post-workout routine or add 2 Vi-shakes, 1 before the workout and 1 after for maximum results.

4. Now for the added challenge: each week I will challenge you to add or remove one thing from your diet or lifestyle that is not benefiting your health or progression. Once the week is over, you will continue with that challenge for the duration of the 90 days, adding something new each week. I will announce every Friday what the next weeks added challenge will be. I will be doing this with all of you so anything I impose on you, I will also be challenging myself with.

5. Track your progress and results. Today ONLY I want you to weigh yourself, take your before picture in a sports bra and shorts or bikini (front, back and side), and measure your chest, waist, hips, biceps, and thighs. This information is for you only. Keep it safe somewhere.

If you are interested in the prizes in this group. Send me your weight, measurements and before pictures and submit them to on June 14 or 15th (day or two before first day of challenge) to be considered to win the weight loss challenge. You will NOT be eligible to win the weight loss challenge prizes if you do not submit your before and after pictures!

If you are interested in the cash prizes that Visalus has to offer for the 90 Day Challenge, you can submit your info and picture on your Visalus Challenge page. Don't weigh yourself again until the 90 days is over, taking into account that muscle takes up less room than fat and even though the scale may not change much, you could be losing major inches!! Our measurements and how our after pictures look will be the biggest indicator.

That is it! I am so excited to start this challenge. I am so glad that so many of you are doing it with me. It helps so much to have support!