5 Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Workouts

fitness, Uncategorized

Few things are more frustrating than seeing little progress after starting a workout routine—and sticking to it—no matter how many gym sessions you log or sweaty laundry loads you do. It’s so frustrating, in fact, that it might even tempt you to quit.

But before you start slacking, know the simple mistakes that could be sabotaging your results—and that you can fix them!

Below are six of the most common workout mistakes people make—and the expert advice you need to get your motivation and progress back on track.

1. Your Goals Are Unrealistic

Set the bar too high and you’re sure to fail. Whether it’s scoring a six-pack in a month or vowing to hit the gym every single day of the week, setting unrealistic goals is probably the number-one way people sabotage themselves, says trainer, yoga teacher, and nutrition coach Kendra Coppey Fitzgerald, C.P.T. When you can’t achieve these unrealistic goals, you’re bound to feel discouraged, which might lead you to give up on your exercise routine altogether.

The Fix: Check in with yourself to make sure your goals are realistic, and adjust if and as needed. Choose a goal you think you can accomplish and then commit to reaching it. So while scoring a six-pack in a month may not be feasible, goals like sticking to a regular workout routine or losing half a pound or so per week are attainable, says trainer and author Jeremy Scott, C.P.T., C.N.S.

Step one is creating a workout schedule that fits your lifestyle. You’re more likely to stay motivated when you have a schedule in place you can really commit to—even if that means squeezing in a quick 15-minute HIIT workout instead of spending an hour at the gym some days.

Then, adding mini fitness goals to your daily routine— such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator at work—can be really motivating, says Fitzgerald. This way, you’ll be more active—and feel more accomplished—every single day.

2. Your Pre-Workout Snack Game Is Off

What you eat (or don’t eat) before you get your sweat on can make the difference between having a killer workout and feeling like a sloth. Most people make one of two opposite mistakes: either eating too much too close to a workout or not eating enough.

Eat too much and your body doesn’t have time to digest and absorb the nutrients in your food, and you might feel sick to your stomach during your workout, says Fitzgerald. If you don’t eat enough, though, you could feel lightheaded and tired, and be more prone to muscle cramps, adds McCall. Your body relies heavily on glycogen (carbs stored in your muscles) during harder workouts, so if you don’t have enough available your body will turn to other less-ideal energy sources—like protein—and your performance will take a hit.

Another overlooked fuel issue: Not drinking enough water in the hours before a workout. Water comprises the majority of our muscle tissue, so you want to be well-hydrated before you exercise, says Pete McCall, M.S., C.S.C.S., C.P.T., master trainer for the American Council on Exercise (ACE). Dehydration can make your body temperature and heart rate rise, which both put extra stress on your body during exercise—so much so that poor pre-workout hydration can actually cut your ability to do high intensity exercise almost in half, according to Sport Nutrition, Second Addition.

The Fix: If you work out first thing in the morning, don’t worry about eating much (if anything) beforehand, since your body still has fuel stashed away from your food you ate the night before, says Fitzgerald. If you’re saving your gym session for later in the day, though, and haven’t had a meal in a few hours, eat something that contains some protein and carbs about an hour beforehand, so you have time to digest. Some of our favorites are toast or a banana with nut butter, a serving of edamame, or Greek yogurt with berries. The carbs will cover your energy needs while the protein will keep your body stocked on the amino acids it needs to support your muscles, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

As for hydration, McCall recommends drinking 16 ounces of water an hour before working out.

And don’t forget to refuel after you work out, too! Nosh on something high in protein and carbs within an hour after you exercise, Fitzgerald recommends. The carbs will restock those energy stores while the protein will help your muscles repair and grow stronger. Fitzgerald’s go-to post-workout snack? Chocolate milk—because it provides protein, carbs and fats.

3. Your Workouts Are Too Repetitive

Yep, there is a such thing as too much routine. Mindlessly run through the same workouts day after day—whether it’s a spin class, weight-lifting session, or any old cardio—and your body will adapt and, eventually, you’ll stop seeing results, according to Fitzgerald. “If your body isn’t being stressed enough, or you’re not putting enough intensity into a workout, your body gets used to it,” Fitzgerald says.

Think of it this way: If a runner jogs at the same pace all the time, they’re not going to get any faster, she says. Bottom line: No matter how much you love a particular workout, it can’t be the only thing you do. And you definitely shouldn’t do it at the same speed or intensity every time.

Plus, doing only cardio—or only strength training—prevents you from developing well-rounded fitness. Cardio helps your heart pump blood (and oxygen and nutrients) throughout your body more efficiently, and helps you ward off cardiovascular issues and chronic conditions like diabetes, according to The Mayo ClinicStrength training, on the other hand, helps your muscle fibers work more efficiently and grow, boosts your metabolism, supports strong bones, and improves your balance.

Women especially may get stuck in a rut of repetitive cardio-only workouts and miss out on the benefits of strength training because they’re afraid of bulking up, says Scott. But without a balance of cardio and strength training, you’ll likely sabotage your metabolism and even gain fat.

The Fix: Switch up your routine throughout the week to include a balance of cardio, strength training, and stretching (such as yoga), so that you challenge your body in multiple ways, says Fitzgerald.

To keep your cardio and resistance training effective, try alternating between high and low-intensity workouts. This will stimulate your muscles in different ways and give your body time to recover between tough workouts, says McCall. Think track or treadmill sprints versus a nice steady jog, or lifting heavy for just a few reps versus lifting moderate weight for a dozen reps.

From there, switch up the tempo, intensity, or order of your strength-training exercises to keep your workouts challenging, adds Fitzgerald. For example, if you usually do squats before lunges, try swapping them, adding more weight to your squats, or turning bodyweight squats into jump squats. You can also mix up your cardio workouts by cross-training and swapping a run for a spin class or a swim. This will help keep your muscles from plateauing and prevent overuse injuries from doing the same repetitive movements all the time, Fitzgerald says.

4. You Skimp On Warmups And Cooldowns

Your workouts are key to making continuous fitness gains—but what you do before and after them matters, too. Let’s start with warming up: If you jump right into a high-intensity workout without prepping your body, you put yourself at greater risk for injuries like pulled and strained muscles, according to Scott. And the same goes if you run out of the gym before properly cooling down, says McCall. During a hard workout, your muscles produce waste your body needs to clear out of its system—and your cooldown and post-workout stretch give it the opportunity to do so, he says. Skimping on that cooldown can delay your recovery process and leave you sore.

The Fix: Spend at least 10 minutes warming up before a workout, Scott recommends. Perform simple moves like lunges, arm circles, toe touches, and hip swings, which get your whole body moving and start to boost your heartrate.

Then, spend about 10 minutes stretching and foam rolling after nailing your sweat session. Stretch all of your major muscle groups for 30 seconds each, and pay special attention to your hip flexors, calves, and hamstrings, McCall recommends. Using a foam roller to massage out your muscles can also help relieve tension and boost recovery, says Fitzgerald. In fact, a review published in Current Sports Medicine Reports found that foam rolling after strength training decreased participants’ soreness later on.

5. You Don’t Take Rest Days

This one might come as a bit of a surprise, but to see results from your workouts you have to rest. Remember that glycogen we talked about earlier? Your body needs time to replenish the stores it used up during your workout, says McCall. If you continue to push yourself on an empty tank, you’ll just feel fatigued and under-perform.

Without solid glycogen stores, your body may turn to protein for fuel—and that’s the opposite of what you want! Your body needs protein to repair damaged muscle tissue and help your muscles continue to grow, so running off protein leaves you more prone to soreness and injury, he says. If necessary, your body will even pull that protein from your muscle tissue and your workouts can actually break down some muscle instead of build it up. And because muscle supports your strength and burns a lot of calories, this is bad news for your overall fitness and your metabolism.

The Fix: Fitzgerald suggests taking a rest day after two or three workout days—especially if any of those workouts were high-intensity (which puts extra stress on your body). Make the most of rest days by foam rolling and stretching to help sore muscles recover, she says.

It’s normal for soreness from a workout to last a day or so, but if you’re still feeling it after a few days, consider it a sign that you’re overdoing it on exercise and putting yourself at risk for injury, McCall says.

Source: by Kate Magill

What Exercise Machines Burn Calories Most Efficiently?

fitness, Fitness on a Budget, Music & Motivation to Boost your Workout, Uncategorized, Workout Wednesday
What Exercise Machines Burn Calories Most Efficiently?

Exercise machines help you burn calories, build muscle and improve your endurance. Certain machines deliver a more intense cardiovascular workout than others, meaning you burn calories at a faster rate. The way you use cardiovascular exercise equipment also affects how efficiently you burn fat. Use the machines’ settings and additional tools to maximize your workout’s aerobic and strengthening benefits.

Burn Calories on a Treadmill

Of all the equipment in your gym or club, the cardiovascular exercise machines deliver the workout that burns the most calories. Running on a treadmill burns more calories than any other machine-centered workout. Before you begin, check the settings and select an intense pace to burn more calories. If you weigh between 125 and 185 pounds and jog at 5 mph for one hour, you burn between 480 and 710 or more calories, depending upon your fitness level and weight. Pick up your pace to 7.5 mph and you burn between 750 and 1,110 calories, which means you can lose up to 2.5 pounds per week running six of the days. Rather than running faster, you can also intensify the workout and burn extra calories by setting the treadmill at an incline, so you’re running “uphill.”

Use an Elliptical Trainer

An elliptical trainer can offer you an excellent aerobic workout. However, because you power the pace of an elliptical trainer, it is easy to slip into coasting when you get tired. To maximize its calorie-burning benefits, work out at high speed and use a machine that has movable handles so you work your arms as well. An added benefit of exercising on an elliptical trainer is that your feet never leave the pedals, making it a low-impact aerobic workout. An hour on the elliptical can burn 540 to 800 calories or more. You can also adjust the resistance and incline on an elliptical trainer to burn extra calories.

Other Cardiovascular Exercise Machines

Other machines that make you raise your heart rate also burn calories efficiently. For example, climbing a stair treadmill burns between 360 and 532 calories in one hour. The workout is lower-impact, so it will not stress your joints, muscles and tendons as much as running high speed on a treadmill. Stair-climbing also provides a strengthening workout for your gluteal, thigh and calf muscles. However, avoid leaning on or holding onto the machine; it reduces the number of calories burned. Using a stationary rowing machines provides a total body-strengthening and aerobic workout, burning between 310 and 754 calories in one hour. Doing indoor cycling at a vigorous rate burns 630 and 932 calories per hour.

Interval Training on Exercise Machines

Most exercise machines feature settings that allow you to make the workout more intense, thus burning more calories. If your machine has an interval setting, using it will dramatically boost your calories burned. This setting varies your pace, usually starting with a warm-up, moving to a vigorous pace then adding in some sprints. The sprints boost your heart rate higher and keep it there, even when you slow down to a recovery pace. You can program your own intervals on an exercise machine by increasing the pace or changing the incline every few minutes and sustaining the sprint or climb for at least 30 seconds. Consult your doctor before beginning interval training or any other new exercise regimen.

Source: NINA MAKOFSKY

The 2 Exercises That Will Keep You Fit For Life No matter the season.

fitness, Fitness on a Budget, Holiday Fast Track, Motivation, Inspiration and Encouragement, Uncategorized, Workout Wednesday
Courtesy of Goh Rhy Yan/Unsplash 
By Kevin Loria If you want to live a long and healthy life, you should make sure you’re getting enough exercise.

It will keep your brain healthy and can add years to your life. Researchers have found that many fit older adults have the muscles and bones of people years — even decades — younger.

And any exercise is good for you, whether you go for a quick swim or jog or even if you are just walking to the store instead of driving.

If you are doing any or all of that, great.

But while a basic minimum amount of exercise does have huge benefits, there are still potentially even greater benefits from doing more.

If you really want to stay strong even as you age and your body starts to decline, there are two exercises that are essential, Dr. Michael Joyner, a physician and Mayo Clinic researcher who is one of the world’s top experts on fitness and human performance, tells Business Insider. And you can do both year-round, no matter how cold or hot it is outside.

But these aren’t easy: burpees and jumping rope. (He recommends trying a weighted jump rope.)

jump rope fitness exercise workoutShutterstock/Dragon Images

Why burpees and jumping rope?

No matter what, your body starts to lose strength as you age. Most people reach their strength peak around age 25, and some research shows marathon runners tend to be fastest at 28, though, of course, this is going to vary from person to person. If you started strength-training after 25 and hadn’t before, your peak would come later.

But if you want to truly stay fit, you’re going to need to keep building strength to combat your body’s natural loss of muscle mass. It’s worth it to do so, and it may be the thing that keeps you young longest. As Joyner wrote for Outside Magazine, “study after study is showing that simple tests of physical performance are highly predictive of future mortality.” To achieve peak physical performance at any age, you need to go beyond endurance to build strength.

You can build strength in a lot of ways — lifting weights and adding intervals to endurance workouts both work. But these two workouts will build both your endurance and your strength, all at once.

“On hard days, I’ll sometimes alternate a minute of burpees with sets using a weighted jump rope,” Joyner tells us.

Ouch.

How to do these workouts

Trainers love to recommend burpees, simply because they’re hard to beat in terms of single exercises that will work your whole body. Instagram-famous fitness trainer Kayla Itsines recently said a burpee with a push-up would be the exercise she’d choose “if she had to pick one” for a full-body workout; and if you want a real crazy challenge, you could try trainer Bobby Maximus’ “prison burpee” workout that he uses to challenge Special Forces soldiers.

But it’s worth starting slow with burpees just to make sure you get the form right. If you start standing, you’ll then squat down until you can put your hands on the ground. Kick back into plank position, do a push-up, then kick your legs back into your squat position. Then jump.

Here’s a GIF to show you how it works, from this YouTube video by ScottHermanFitness:

https://giphy.com/embed/26BoCv5aP72ixM3ja

via GIPHY

This video by XHIT Daily on YouTube is also useful, showing burpees done with a wider stance, which can be more stable for someone not accustomed to the exercise.

Jumping rope with a weighted rope is a more straightforward exercise, but the challenge is no joke. You can find a variety of recommended workouts, but generally (once you get up to speed), you’ll want to do a series of sets, perhaps alternating with another exercise. If you’re feeling tough, you can try alternating with burpees, like Joyner.

Just remember this, though: These workouts are going to be hard. It’s great to push yourself, and there’s plenty of research showing strong benefits for vigorous exercise. But it takes time to build up to these kinds of exercises (and practice to get them right), and you should talk to your doctor first if you’re worried you might injure yourself.

Anyone who wants to attempts these intense workouts also needs to remember to rest. Most trainers recommend alternating between hard days and easy days.

“Make your hard days hard and your easy days easy,” says Joyner. “Control your pace or it will control you.”

This post originally appeared on businessinsider.com.

Source:

Eat Like a Trainer: 8 Trainer-Approved Breakfast Recipes

Food & Nutrition, Motivation, Inspiration and Encouragement, Uncategorized
by BRITTANY RISHER
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Eat Like a Trainer: 8 Trainer-Approved Breakfast Recipes

Talk to most trainers, and it seems they are up at the crack of dawn, work all day with clients, work out themselves, and then often have business, family, friends and personal matters to address. It’s a lot, and they check every item off their list with energy to spare.

What gives them that go-go-go pep? It turns out it’s combination of drive and the right foods, starting with a nutritious breakfast. We asked personal trainers to share the recipe for their go-to morning meals.

From eggs to oats to pancakes and the requisite smoothie, here are eight trainer-endorsed recipes to fuel your day — and your muscles.

EGGS OVER VEGGIE HASH
This breakfast, from Maria Macsay, a yoga teacher and instructor at 305 Fitness and SLT in New York City, puts bars and smoothies to shame. “I love this simple, yet nutritious, meal post-workout because it’s the perfect balance of protein, fiber, healthy fats and carbs, which supports repair of muscle tissue and replenishes the body’s energy supply. I always feel satiated, nourished and light after this meal,” she says.

Eggs-over-Veggie-Hash

Ingredients

  • Coconut oil
  • 4–5 sliced Brussels sprouts
  • Sliced fennel, as desired
  • 1/2 cup cooked sweet potato, cubed
  • 4 chopped kale leaves
  • Himalayan sea salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1–2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1–2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

Directions

Warm coconut oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add Brussels sprouts and fennel and sauté for 5 minutes. Add sweet potato, kale and a pinch of salt. Continue to sauté until vegetables are soft and a fork easily pierces the sprouts.

In a separate pan, cook eggs over-easy or over-medium, based on your preference.

Plate vegetables. Top with olive oil, eggs and nutritional yeast. Recipe makes 1 serving.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories: 470; Total Fat: 23g; Saturated Fat: 5g; Monounsaturated Fat: 10g; Cholesterol: 370mg; Sodium: 316mg; Carbohydrate: 36g; Dietary Fiber: 14g; Sugar: 5g; Protein: 27g

LOADED SCRAMBLED EGGS WITH AVOCADO & ROASTED POTATOES
Eggs are a classic breakfast, and who can say no to avocado? “I’m always on the move and start my mornings early, so my go-to healthy breakfast needs to be something quick and easy to whip up,” says Lita Lewis, founder of Thick Athletics Apparel and U by Kotex FITNESS partner. “This is one of my faves. What I love most about this recipe is how delicious it tastes. Not only does it fuel me with the energy I need to take on my day, it also leaves me feeling fully satisfied.” Lewis likes to serve her scramble with roasted potatoes (she makes them ahead of time so it’s just heat and eat) and half a fresh avocado.

Loaded-Scrambled-Eggs

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg white
  • Sea salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 1 handful baby spinach
  • Spring onions, to taste
  • Cilantro, to taste
  • Halved cherry tomatoes, to taste
  • 1 dash paprika
  • Optional: roasted potatoes, avocado

Directions

Scramble eggs, egg whites and salt and pepper to taste in a bowl. Add to a frying pan with spinach, spring onions, cilantro and tomatoes. Cook to desired doneness. Serve topped with additional spring onions, cilantro and paprika. Recipe makes 1 serving.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories: 200; Total Fat: 10g; Saturated Fat: 3g; Monounsaturated Fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 370mg; Sodium: 251mg; Carbohydrate: 9g; Dietary Fiber: 3g; Sugar: 2g; Protein: 18g

OMELET “MUFFINS”
Take your omelet on the go by turning it into egg muffins, like these from the S.O.S. Food Plan by Ashley Borden, master trainer, lifestyle consultant and author. “I can easily eat these post-workout or, when I’m working early, just grab two and go,” she says. “The colorful veggies have antioxidants, and I usually top them with sliced avocado for more sustained energy and hot sauce.”

Omelet-Muffins

Ingredients

  • 8 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 8 ounces any lean meat
  • 2 cups chopped vegetables such as mushrooms, red bell peppers, broccoli, asparagus and/or onions
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 dash pepper
  • 1 dash garlic powder
  • 1 dash paprika

Directions

Preheat oven to 450°F and line a muffin pan with eight paper liners. Beat all ingredients together in a bowl. Divide among muffin cups and cook 18–20 minutes until set. Makes 4 servings at 2 muffins each.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories: 219; Total Fat: 11g; Saturated Fat: 3g; Monounsaturated Fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 405mg; Sodium: 348mg; Carbohydrate: 0g; Dietary Fiber: 0g; Sugar: 0g; Protein: 24g

ENERGY-BOOSTING BREAKFAST COMBO
Eggs or oatmeal? Why not both, says Instagram fitness star Anna Victoria. “My favorite homemade breakfast is a veggie omelet and berry cinnamon oatmeal,” she says. “It’s quick and easy to make, it gives you energy to start off your day on the right foot, and it’s a macro-balanced, whole-food meal.” Try finding that at a fast-food joint or coffee shop.

Energy-Boosting-Breakfast-Combo

Ingredients

Veggie Omelet

  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 dash of pink Himalayan salt
  • Pepper, to taste
  • 2–3 cherry tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons bell peppers, chopped

Directions

Heat oil in a cooking pan over medium-low heat, tilting the pan to spread oil.  While the pan is heating, crack eggs and egg whites in a bowl and mix. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Add tomato and pepper to the pan and sauté or 1–2 minutes. Pour eggs into the pan and let sit for 1–2 minutes. Once it is nearly cooked, use a spatula to flip one side of the omelet onto the other side. Let cook for 1 additional minute.

Ingredients

Oatmeal

  • 1/3 cup oats
  • 3 tablespoons coconut milk
  • 1 handful mixed raspberries and blueberries
  • Cinnamon, to taste

Directions

Mix oats and coconut milk in a bowl. Heat in the microwave per package directions. Top with raspberries, blueberries and cinnamon.

Recipe makes 1 serving at one omelet and one bowl of oatmeal each.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories: 357; Total Fat: 15g; Saturated Fat: 4g; Monounsaturated Fat: 3g; Cholesterol: 370mg; Sodium: 473mg; Carbohydrate: 33g; Dietary Fiber: 5g; Sugar: 11g; Protein: 24g

BANANA PEANUT BUTTER OVERNIGHT OATS
Overnight oats are the solution for people who don’t want to do more than pour cereal and milk into a bowl in the morning. Simply combine all ingredients in a bowl the night before, pop in the fridge, and you can grab and eat in the morning. This recipe from Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott, cofounders of Tone It Up, is delicious, too. “Peanut butter and bananas … what’s not to love? Plus, the fiber in the oats helps slowly release glucose into your body for steady energy levels,” they say. Pack it in a mason jar so you can take it to the office if you’re in a rush.

Banana-PB-Overnight-Oats

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup rolled oats
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 4 teaspoons chia seeds
  • 2 teaspoons honey or maple syrup
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 scoop vanilla Tone It Up Protein
  • 1 banana, sliced

Directions

Combine everything in a bowl. Divide among two mason jars. Let sit in the fridge overnight. Recipe makes 2 servings.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories: 352; Total Fat: 14g; Saturated Fat: 2g; Monounsaturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 235mg; Carbohydrate: 45g; Dietary Fiber: 10g; Sugar: 14g; Protein: 17g

SIMPE APPLE PANCAKES
Pancakes are one of those recipes that seems like it takes a long time, but actually comes together quickly. Try these tasty, no-sugar-added flapjacks from Cassey Ho, creator of POP Pilates and POPFLEX. “I love this breakfast because it’s not only delicious, it’s packed with protein and complex carbs to keep me full and energized throughout the morning,” she says.

Apple-Pancakes

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tablespoons almond flour
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon nut butter
  • 1/2 small apple, spiraled or chopped
  • 1 pinch of cinnamon, optional

Directions

In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, applesauce, almond flour, coconut flour and baking powder. Heat a griddle or pan over medium-low heat and coat with cooking spray. Reduce to low heat. Using a small measuring cup, scoop batter to make two pancakes. Cook for 2–3 minutes per side, or until firm and cooked through. Top one pancake with nut butter and cinnamon, if using. Place the other pancake on top and add apples and more cinnamon. Recipe makes 1 serving.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories: 356; Total Fat: 19g; Saturated Fat: 6g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2g; Cholesterol: 370mg; Sodium: 226mg; Carbohydrate: 26g; Dietary Fiber: 9g; Sugar: 11g; Protein: 20g

GREEN SMOOTHIE
Green smoothies run the gamut, from sweet and fruity to grassy and kale-y. For those who prefer to mask the flavor of their greens, try this recipe from celebrity trainer, nutritionist and author Harley Pasternak. “It’s packed with protein and fiber, which helps make you full and stay full. Plus, if you’re not a huge fan of green veggies, it’s a delicious way to get in your greens without hardly tasting them,” he says.

Green-Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 2 cups spinach leaves, packed
  • 1 ripe pear, unpeeled, cored and chopped
  • 15 green or red grapes
  • 3/4 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped avocado
  • 1–2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup water, skim milk or almond milk (if needed to get the blender going)

Directions

In a blender, combine all ingredients and blend until smoothie reaches desired consistency. Recipe makes 1 serving.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories: 245; Total Fat: 3g; Saturated Fat: 0g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2g; Cholesterol: 8mg; Sodium: 132mg; Carbohydrate: 39g; Dietary Fiber: 8g; Sugar: 24g; Protein: 20g

GLUTEN-FREE VEGAN PROTEIN PANCAKES 
ModelFIT trainer Rahel Ghebremichael turns to protein pancakes when she needs to fuel for a busy morning of teaching and training clients. “Teff is a small, gluten-free grain that I grew up on and recently started incorporating into my non-traditional foods,” she says. It has protein, fiber and iron to support your muscles.

Gluten-Free-Vegan-Protein-Pancakes

Ingredients

Dry

  • 1/2 cup teff flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon pink salt
  • 1/2 scoop chocolate protein powder

Wet

  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 6 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, divided
  • 2 teaspoons applesauce
  • 3/4 cups unsweetened almond milk

Directions

Mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and whisk several times.

Combine chia seeds and water and let sit for 2–3 minutes until a gel forms. Combine with 1 tablespoon coconut oil, applesauce and almond milk.

Mix wet and dry ingredients.

Set a pan over medium-high heat and grease with remaining tablespoon coconut oil. When hot, ladle in pancake mix to desired size and cook about 3–4 minutes, until pancake begins to bubble. Flip and cook another 3–4 minutes. Serve topped with maple syrup and fresh fruit as desired. Recipe makes 2 servings.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories: 300; Total Fat: 17g; Saturated Fat: 13g; Monounsaturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 15mg; Sodium: 357mg; Carbohydrate: 26g; Dietary Fiber: 7g; Sugar: 1g; Protein: 10g

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