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<div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="932830416524168380-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="932830416524168380-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="932830416524168380-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0060_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery932830416524168380]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0060.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="932830416524168380-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="932830416524168380-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0045_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery932830416524168380]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0045.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="932830416524168380-imageContainer2" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="932830416524168380-insideImageContainer2" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0051_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery932830416524168380]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0051.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="932830416524168380-imageContainer3" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="932830416524168380-insideImageContainer3" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/fall4_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery932830416524168380]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/fall4.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="533" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100%;top:-38.83%;left:0%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="932830416524168380-imageContainer4" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="932830416524168380-insideImageContainer4" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/fall3_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery932830416524168380]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/fall3.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="300" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100%;top:0%;left:0%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="932830416524168380-imageContainer5" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="932830416524168380-insideImageContainer5" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/fall1_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery932830416524168380]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/fall1.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="280" _height="206" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:101.94%;top:0%;left:-0.97%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="932830416524168380-imageContainer6" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="932830416524168380-insideImageContainer6" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/fall2_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery932830416524168380]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/fall2.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="300" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100%;top:0%;left:0%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="932830416524168380-imageContainer7" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="932830416524168380-insideImageContainer7" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0057_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery932830416524168380]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0057.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">Whenever September 1st strikes here in Colorado, I'm all about putting up the fall decorations, baking with pumpkin, lighting soy candles during the day, and slowing down in some flannel PJs with a cup of hot coffee in hand.  <br><br>As peak fall takes hold of Colorado in mid-September and we prepare for a snowy season ahead (often starting in October), I find myself taking a slower approach to my days, being intentional about soaking in the sights, traditions, and joys of the autumn season. <br><br>Summer evenings bring cool air here in Colorado, but as August and September approach, the night-time temperatures drop even lower into the 40's and 50's making for cold mornings and evenings--and there's nothing better than warming up with a hearty pumpkin muffin and a cup of coffee.  <br><br>I hope you enjoy these as much as our little family. My boys like to eat these with a side of fruit for an afternoon snack and we plan to take them on a fall hike with us as well. They are a great travel food!<br><br><strong>Spelt Pumpkin Muffins</strong><br><br><span>1/3 cup melted coconut or avocado oil (or melted butter for dairy option)</span><br><span>1/2 cup maple syrup or honey (i used maple syrup)</span><br><span>2 eggs<br>1.5 tsp vanilla extract<br>1 cup pumpkin puree </span><br><span>1/2 cup cashew milk</span><br><span>1 cup raisins </span><br><span>1/2 cup pecans, roughly chopped</span><br><span>1/2 cup rolled oats</span><br><span>1 teaspoon baking soda<br>1/2 tsp salt<br>3/4 tsp cinnamon<br>1/2 tsp nutmeg<br>1/2 tsp cardamon<br>1 1/2 cups spelt flour (or use all-purpose flour or combination of the two)<br><br>1. Preheat oven to 325 and grease a muffin pan that makes 12 muffins. Place all wet ingredients (oil, maple syrup, eggs, vanilla, pumpkin, and milk) into a medium-sized bowl. Whisk thoroughly. <br>2. Place remaining ingredients into a medium-sized bowl and stir until everything is mixed well. <br>3. Add dry ingredients into wet and mix gently until flour is combined (don't overstir as this can make your muffins "tough"). <br>4. Add 1/4 cup batter to each muffin tip. <br>5. Place in oven and bake for 12-15 minutes. Insert a toothpick into center of muffin, if it comes out dry, your muffins are done. <br>**note: dough should not be super runny or thick; the batter should slowly pour into the tins. </span> </div>

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the perfect TOTAL BODY WORKOUT

<div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-none " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:center"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/2-cups-flour1-2-cup-butter2-eggs3-4-cup-sugar1-cup-milk1-2-tsp-salt2-tsp-baking-powder1-tsp-vanilla_orig.png" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph"> <strong>TOTAL BODY WORKOUT GUIDE</strong><br><br><u><strong>Instructions:</strong></u><br>You will need a light (10 lb) and heavier (25 lb) set of dumbbells, depending on your strength. If you are just starting out with workouts, I recommend <em>not</em> using weight for the split squats. If you have a beginner level of fitness use 10 lb DBs, and 25 lb DBs if you are advanced. <br><br>In addition, you will need a bench or couch to use for the marching glute raises + a plyometric box or sturdy chair to do the lateral shuffles. I recommend holding 10-25 lbs above your head for the lateral shuffles--just make sure you aren't arching your back; lower your weight if so. <br><br>Lastly, for the kettlebell swings, you can use a dumbbell as a replacement. If you are a beginner, stick with around 15 lbs or advanced use a 35 lb kettlebell. <br><br><u><strong>Warmup:</strong></u><br>Spend 10 minutes  doing this <u><a href="https://vimeo.com/13283176" target="_blank"><font color="#8d2424">dynamic warmup</font></a></u>. <br><br><strong>The Workout:<br><br></strong>10/leg of <u><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r-XFMmCDFnw" target="_blank"><font color="#8d2424">Bulgarian Split Squats</font></a></u><br>15 <u><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d94xX-AQZ0A" target="_blank"><font color="#8d2424">American Kettle Swings</font></a></u><br>20 <u><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SocuVW_CKVs" target="_blank"><font color="#8d2424">Alternating Glute Marches</font></a></u><br>20 <u><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ke3MKgtUjc0" target="_blank"><font color="#8d2424">Elevated Lateral Shuffles</font></a></u><br><br>Do 4 sets, resting 1 minute after each set. <br><br><u><strong>Cool down:</strong><br></u>Walk to lower heart rate + spend 5-10 minutes using a foam roller and stretching. <br><br><strong>Stuck in a rut with workouts?</strong> I offer monthly online personal training tailored to your goals and needs. Send an email to rachel@rachelmeyerfitness.com for more info. </div>

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Creamy, 4-Ingredient Butternut Squash Soup (dairy-free)

<div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="510824959903274937-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="510824959903274937-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="510824959903274937-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0129_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery510824959903274937]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0129.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="510824959903274937-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="510824959903274937-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0130_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery510824959903274937]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0130.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">"Mommy, what <em>is</em> this thing?<br><br>Oh, that's a butternut squash. <br><br>Toddler throws said squash on floor with force.  <br><br>Squash cracks in half. <br><br>Mommy now has to make squash. <br><br>I <em>really </em>wasn't happy when my toddler slammed the butternut squash into the floor, but, I created two amazing recipes, so I can't complain anymore. <br><br>The yellow leaves on the trees in our front yard are absolutely  stunning in the sunlight today.<br><br>As I whipped this soup together and simultaneously ducked from flying legos (true story), I was able to take a few glances of the colorful leaves and let that "fall" nostalgia set in. <br><br>Don't let the chaos of a hectic fall schedule distract you from the beauty of this season. <br><br>The kitchen happens to be my favorite place to take in the sights, sounds, smells, and feeling of autumn. <br><br><u><strong>Creamy Butternut Squash Soup</strong></u><br>4 cups butternut squash, cubed and roasted <br>1 T grass-fed butter (or olive oil, coconut oil or ghee)<br>3 cups chicken broth (i used organic chicken bone broth from Costco)<br><span>1/2 onion<br>1/8 tsp nutmeg<br>salt + pepper to taste <br><br>1. Preheat oven to 350.<br><br>2. Place 4 cups of cubed butternut squash on a baking sheet (I cubed mine by hand but you can buy pre-cut squash in many stores now). Drizzle with a bit of coconut or avocado oil + pepper. Put in preheated oven and roast until softened (about 20-30 min). <br><br>3. While squash is cooking, heat a medium-sized sauce pan to medium heat and saute onions in a bit of butter or coconut oil until softened. <br><br>4. Once squash is finished, add it plus broth and nutmeg to a blender and puree. Pour the puree in with the onions and add salt and pepper to taste. Stir well and continue heating if needed. <br><br>note: if you want soup completely smooth, add onions to the blender to puree as well. I like the texture of them in the soup but that's just a personal preference. <br><br>Garnish with pumpkin seeds and fresh cracked pepper. <br><br>Happy Autumning my friends!</span><br><br> </div>

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Butternut Squash Breakfast Casserole

<div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="637294310971919940-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="637294310971919940-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="637294310971919940-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0139-2_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery637294310971919940]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0139-2.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="298" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100.67%;top:0%;left:-0.34%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="637294310971919940-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="637294310971919940-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/squash_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery637294310971919940]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/squash.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="499" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100%;top:-33.17%;left:0%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="637294310971919940-imageContainer2" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="637294310971919940-insideImageContainer2" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0133-2_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery637294310971919940]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0133-2.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">If you haven't gotten acquainted with the butternut squash, <em>now </em>is your time. <br><br>Similar to the sweet potato, it pairs well with so many recipes including casseroles, <u><a target="_blank" href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/blog/creamy-4-ingredient-butternut-squash-soup-dairy-free"><font color="#8d2424">soups</font></a></u>, side dishes, and more. <br><br>If you are wanting to create a dairy-free casserole or soup, using a food from the squash family is a perfect way to enhance the creaminess of the dish along with the flavor without adding milk or cheese. <br><br>Let's be honest, when most people think of breakfast casseroles, they think <em>c h e e e s e baby. </em><br><br>Well, I've got your easy and creamy covered in this recipe. <br><br>It's veggie <em>loaded</em> and absolutely delicious in <em>every. way. imaginable. </em><br><br>P.S. You can enhance <em>all</em> recipes by putting hot sauce on top. Okay. bye now. <br><br><strong>Butternut Squash Breakfast Casserole</strong><br>2 cups butternut squash, cubed and roasted<br>3/4 lb ground breakfast sausage (I used pork..sorry for not being exact, I didn't measure the amount of meat)<br>1 red bell pepper (who am I kidding, it doesn't have to be red), diced<br>1/2 onion, diced<br>1 cup spinach, finely chopped<br>12 eggs<br>1/8 tsp each of: nutmeg, oregano, sage, and garlic powder<br>salt and pepper to taste<br><br>1. Preheat oven to 350. <br><br>2. Place cubed butternut squash on a baking sheet with a drizzle of avocado oil + pepper. Roast for 20-30 minutes or until soft. <br><br>3. While squash is cooking, cook sausage with peppers, onions, and spinach in a frying skillet. Add seasoning and salt and pepper to taste. <br><br>4. Whisk 12 eggs in a large bowl, season with salt and pepper. Add squash + sausage/veggie mixture to the eggs and stir until combined. <br><br>5. Place mixture in a 9x13 in pan and bake for 20 minutes, or until it doesn't jiggle anymore. </div>

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Biscuits and Gravy Casserole

<div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="222866405656889148-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="222866405656889148-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="222866405656889148-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0005_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery222866405656889148]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0005.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="222866405656889148-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="222866405656889148-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0002-4_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery222866405656889148]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0002-4.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">I believe occasional comfort food is good for the <em>soul</em>. And anything good for the soul is good for your <em>health</em>. <br><br>If you are constantly stressing out over what you eat, you are canceling out the health benefits of eating healthy. <br><br>This balance of moderation is exactly what I teach my clients. My clients come to me at very different points in their journey and I let each of them enjoy the following foods in moderation:<br><br>Unbleached white flour.<br><br>Whole, organic milk.<br><br>Brown sugar. <br><br>Red meat. <br><br>Coffee. (good for the <em>soul</em>, guys)<br><br>Moderation is a <em>really</em> amazing thing, and it helps my clients stay in control of their choices. If I tell them they can't ever eat a doughnut again and be healthy, most of them will run the other direction. <br><br>But, if I give them a <em>plan of action</em>, they know exactly when they will be enjoying some treats and which days they are loading up on vegetables, proteins, and fats in conjunction with their workouts. <br><br>We aren't going to let food confuse and frustrate us anymore. Mmmk?<br><br>We make occasional doughnuts in our house for breakfast, but the majority of our breakfast foods are eggs, vegetables, potatoes, sauerkraut, protein pancakes, fruit, and yogurt. <br><br>And of course, this absolutely mind-blowing delicious biscuits and gravy casserole I'm about to unveil. <br><br>I encourage you to enjoy your favorite greasy meals on occasion by switching out preservative-filled ingredients with real, whole food ingredients. Preservatives and artificial foods never have a place in a healthy diet (I don't do preservative moderation, yall). <br><br><u><strong>Biscuits and Gravy Casserole </strong></u><br><strong>(serves 4-6; unless you have boys, then they will eat it all and you'll have to eat water for breakfast)</strong><br>Homemade biscuit recipe; <u>see instructions below</u> (or store-bought organic biscuits)<br>1 lb breakfast sausage (I get pasture-raised from Whole Foods or an MSG-free version from Costco or King Soopers)<br>3 and 1/2 cups whole milk (nut milk should work)<br>6 T unbleached, all-purpose flour (you could use corn-starch or possibly tapioca-flour)<br>1 tsp sage<br>pepper to taste<br><br><u><strong>Ingredients for biscuits: </strong></u><strong>(remember, I live at 6k feet so you might need more flour or less water)</strong><br>2 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I use high-altitude flour here in Denver)<br>1 tsp salt<br>3 tsp baking powder<br>1 stick butter<br>1 cup yogurt + 1/4 cup water (if you use greek you might need 1/2 cup water or so as it is thicker; if you use a runnier type yogurt (we use Brown Cow) I add 1 cup of yogurt + about 1/4 cup milk or water. <br><br>note: consistency of dough should be fairly sticky but not runny. You want a nice, light dough. A dense dough will produce dense biscuits. I've been making this recipe for several years so I have it down to an art, so give yourself grace the first few times and you will have a perfect biscuit recipe!<br><br><u><strong>Instructions for biscuits</strong>:</u><br><br>1.Place flour, salt, and baking soda in a medium-sized bowl, stir to combine. Add butter by shredding it with a cheese grater (I know, genius). Stir again to combine everything. <br><br>2. Add yogurt, stir gently until it is all mixed in. Slowly add water (you can always add more). Add enough water until a nice, wet dough comes together. <br><br>3. Flop dough out of bowl onto a floured counter. Do not use a rolling pin as we want to handle these very little to prevent making them dense. <br><br>4. Turn dough around a couple of time to coat both sides with flour so it's not as sticky and wet. <br><br>5. For the casserole recipe, I used a butterknife to cut it into small chunks (about 2 inch cubes). For a regular recipe, use a small mason jar to cut 8-10 biscuits (do not twist as you do this, that will hinder them from rising as well). <br><br>6. If you are making regular, round biscuits, i bake them in a cast-iron pot at 350 for about 20 minutes or until just golden on top. I like my biscuits on the soft side. <br><br><u><strong>Instructions for casserole: Preheat oven to 350</strong></u><br><br>1. After you've prepared the biscuits and cut them into cubes, place about 1/4 of the biscuit cubes in a bottom of a square baking dish and place in oven for about 10 min. You don't want too many biscuits in this casserole or it will be too bread heavy (i made this mistake the first time). <br><br>2. While the bottom-layered biscuits are cooking in the oven, crumble and cook 1 pound of breakfast sausage in a large cast-iron skillet. <br><br>3. When the sausage is cooked, add 6 T of all-purpose flour to the sausage and stir until flour is gone. Slowly add 3 and 1/2 cup milk to the  mixture. <br><br>4. Stir continuously until gravy is thick or to your desired consistency. You don't want it too thick as it will become thicker as it bakes in the oven. <br><br>5. Take pan out of the oven with the bottom-layered biscuits (they should be golden brown). Pour all of the gravy on top of those biscuits. Then, add another layer of biscuits chunks on top of casserole (you don't want to put too many biscuits on top as they will expand; you should have quite a few biscuits chunks left over for eating with some jam). <br><br>6. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown. <br><br>7. Enjoy with a rainy day and a hot cup of coffeeeeeee!</div>

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30 Second Chocolate Sauce

<div class="paragraph">Just imagine. Healthy, delicious chocolate sauce drizzled over....everything. </div> <div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="313817981418401743-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="313817981418401743-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="313817981418401743-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0021-2_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery313817981418401743]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0021-2.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="313817981418401743-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="313817981418401743-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0012-2_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery313817981418401743]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0012-2.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="313817981418401743-imageContainer2" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="313817981418401743-insideImageContainer2" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0018-3_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery313817981418401743]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0018-3.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">Pancakes. <br><br>Strawberries. <br><br>Ice-cream. <br><br>Frozen fruit. <br><br>Homemade <a href="http://realhealthyrecipes.com/2014/03/24/best-paleo-donut-recipe/" target="_blank"><font color="#da4444">Paleo Doughnuts</font></a>. <br><br>...or just eat it straight off the spoon. <br><br>Seriously. If your real food kitchen is not stocked with coconut oil, cocoa powder, and pure maple syrup, you need to reevaluate your priorities. <br><br>I used to pour about 1/4 cup of Hershey's chocolate syrup into my milk every morning as a child. Oh. my. word. it was good. <br><br>But then, I learned about this <a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/meet-the-coach.html" target="_blank"><font color="#da4444">real food lifestyle</font></a> and realized, you can eat <em>all</em> of the yummy foods without all of the nasty chemicals that do <em>who-knows-what</em> to my insides. <br><br>In the real-food world we make <em>no</em> apologies for eating fat in unlimited quantities. Because, fat doesn't make you fat (yes, you were lied to for 50 years).  <br><br>And that's exactly what you are going to do after you make this chocolate. Eat that coconut oil with a smile on your face. Knowing you are fueling your body with nourishing ingredients + satisfying your tastebuds at the <em>same</em> time. <br><br>It's glorious, really. <br><br>Want to learn how to transition to a real-food lifestyle and seriously never look back at chemicals? I now have a spot open in my <a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/nutrition.html" target="_blank" style="color: rgb(218, 68, 68);"><font color="#da4444">VIP coaching program</font>!</a><font color="#da4444"> </font><br><br><font color="#3f3f3f">My VIP programs are almost always full on a month-to-month basis, so grab your spot now!</font><br><br><u><strong>30 Second Chocolate Sauce</strong></u><br>3 T coconut oil<br>4 T cocoa powder<br>1/4 tsp vanilla <br>1-2 T pure maple syrup (my boys and I loved it with just 1, but my hubby would have preferred 2 T)<br>small pinch of salt (and cayenne pepper if you want to get crazy)<br><br>1. Melt coconut oil in microwave for 15-20 seconds (until fully melted).<br>2. Mix in remaining ingredients. <br>3. Pour over any food you like. <br><br>note: If you pour it over frozen fruit it will harden. Hello chocolate covered strawberries. <br><br>You can also stick this in a small container and refrigerator to make hard chocolate.<br><br>Okay, have a marvelous and fabulous and adventurous weekend. <br> </div>

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Sweet Potatoes Home Fries

<div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="702106924227628131-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="702106924227628131-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="702106924227628131-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0034-6_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery702106924227628131]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0034-6.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="702106924227628131-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="702106924227628131-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0035-3_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery702106924227628131]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0035-3.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">If there is one food I would never give up, it would be potatoes. <br><br>My family knows that when I make a pan of cubed potatoes or hashbrowns in the mornings, half of the pan is for me, the rest is for them. <br><br>If someone tries to tell you that potatoes <em>aren't</em> healthy, run away quickly. <br><br>I suggest eating them less in a fried, fast-food form and more in recipes like this or simply as a substitute for processed chips or other side dishes. <br><br>We eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I love to mix in peppers and onions with them to enjoy with our favorite grass-fed hotdogs or brats. I also love them as a side dish to sandwiches or as a post-workout snack with raw sauerkraut. <br><br>Make them in bulk on Sunday and you have a wonderful side dish for the whole week ahead.  <br><br><u><strong>Sweet Potato Home Fries<br></strong></u>1-2 medium-large sized sweet potatoes, cubed (I like to make these in bulk on Sundays so we can eat them throughout the week)<br>2 T coconut oil or butter<br>seasonings to taste: salt, pepper, garlic salt, and paprika<br><br>Heat a large cast-iron skillet to medium heat. Add oil + potatoes, stirring well to coat potatoes. Add seasoning, stir well again. Every 2-3 minutes check on the potatoes, stirring to make sure they don't burn. I keep my burners on low with our cast-iron skillets when I'm cooking these as they have a tendency to burn with their higher sugar content. <br><br>Once the potatoes are soft with a slight crisp on edge, serve with eggs, raw sauerkraut, and breakfast sausage. <br> </div>

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Why healthy living still feels forced for some people

<div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="182278256855171660-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="182278256855171660-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="182278256855171660-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0161_1_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery182278256855171660]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0161_1.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="182278256855171660-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="182278256855171660-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0043-2_1_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery182278256855171660]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0043-2_1.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="182278256855171660-imageContainer2" style="float:left;width:33.28%;margin:0;"><div id="182278256855171660-insideImageContainer2" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0010-3_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery182278256855171660]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/dsc0010-3.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="266" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:112.78%;top:0%;left:-6.39%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">If you want healthy living to feel "natural", I'm going to tell you why it doesn't <em>yet</em> and what you need to do to make it a normal rhythm of your life. <br><br>Before I dive into the 3 stages, please know that creating healthy habits has <em>nothing</em> to do with you just being an unmotivated human. It might have to do with your upbringing or the people you hang around or the lack of support you get, but failing to create a habit is <em>not </em>a reflection of you lacking <em>willpower</em>. <br><br>Basically,<em> you can totally do this. </em><br><br>The first stage towards developing a new habit is <em>motivation</em>. Motivation is your <em>why</em>. It's the reason you want to do something in the first place--because everyone who wants change has a reason. <br><br>Right now, I want you to get out your journal or a piece of paper and write down a mission statement for why you want change. <br><br>After you've done this, you need some sort of game plan as to how change is going to take place. These new habits need to be <em>prioritized </em>by being scheduled. <br><br>The second stage towards creating your new habit is discipline. Discipline is the stage that you may or may not hate, depending on the habit you are trying to implement. <br><br>This is the stage before your new thing becomes a habit. You are doing your thing whether you <em>feel </em>like it or not. If you can't get through this phase, you won't make it a habit. <br><br>I know that might sound harsh and not fun, but the reality is, when left to our own devices, we are naturally <em>lazy</em> creatures. There's a reason #bingewatch is a buzz phrase right now. Most of us would love to sit around all day and get paid to do nothing. <br><br>Even a trainer like myself has days <em>every</em> week where I just want to check out from life. I don't want to write a blog post or create new client workouts or figure out how to continue growing my business or go to the gym at 5am. <br><br>But here's the deal, I never regret doing any of those things. When I get my butt in gear, I get stronger, change lives, and make a difference in the world. Those things bring me lasting satisfaction and that's better than any amount of sitting around waiting for motivation to slap me in the face. <br><br>I do those things because they are <em>habits</em>. Blogging, working out, and building a business regularly were in motivation phase for quite some time. Then they moved to discipline stage and now finally, they are habits.<br><br>So, third and lastly, is the <em>habit </em>stage. This is the stage where you've been doing something regularly for months and it's a part of your normal rhythm of life. <br><br>And can I just tell you, finally getting to that habit stage feels good. <em>Really</em> good. You've put in the hard work and carried out your mission when you didn't feel like it for weeks. <br><br>Now, this doesn't mean you'll feel like doing it every single day of the week, but you will do it anyways and it won't feel like pure torture or like another "extra" cluttering up your schedule. <br><br>What habit are you trying to implement that still feels forced? Or have you finally gotten to the habit stage with something? We would love to hear your victories!</div>

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How to stay motivated in your day-to-day tasks 

<div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="332118989793043774-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="332118989793043774-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="332118989793043774-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/summitfit1_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery332118989793043774]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/summitfit1.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="299" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100.33%;top:0%;left:-0.17%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="332118989793043774-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="332118989793043774-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/greensmoothie_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery332118989793043774]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/greensmoothie.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="332" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100%;top:-5.33%;left:0%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">Whether it's unloading the dishwasher, taking out the trash, putting the kids to bed, eating a healthy meal, or getting off the couch for some movement, certain days those mundane tasks can almost feel <em>impossible</em> to do with a good attitude. <br><br>As a mom of two toddlers, I often have to quiet myself amongst the chaos and tune myself into <em>why</em> I'm doing those things in the first place. This can be <em>really</em> challenging some days, but it always helps me refocus. <br><br>Professional athletes have to spend hours and hours in gym and keep their diets in check to perform their best during their games. Are they just more motivated individuals, or is there something else that keeps them going day after day?<br><br>Entrepreneurs who are in the beginning stages of building a business hit many challenges and often work excess hours in pursuit of their dream with little to no reward in the initially. Where does that drive come from?<br><br>Cancer patients undergoing chemo with grim outlooks can be found inspiring those around them with a message of hope and perseverance. <br><br><u><strong>I believe those people are implementing the following three things:</strong></u><br><br>1. They have <em>passion</em> driving the action. <br><br>2. They don't let their emotions dictate their actions. <br><br>3. They figure out how to mentally thrive among boring, routine, and difficult times. <br><br>Each person is going to approach those three things differently, but if you can find a way to master them, you are going to thrive in your day-to-day life no matter what it throws at you. <br><br>These principles are something I talk to my clients about a lot because I'm always asking them to do things that are challenging. <br><br>I tell them to eat more vegetables and less brownies. <br><br>Move more and sit less. <br><br>Take on adventures that scare them. <br><br>Get up early. <br><br>Run faster. <br><br>Dream bigger. <br><br>If I can help clients do those three things, the healthy eating, exercise, and better habits fall right into place.<br> </div>

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2 habits my "fittest" clients maintain

<div class="paragraph">When I first start working with clients, they often come to me overwhelmed and confused as to how to reach their goals.<br><br>Whether it's losing weight, improving energy levels, gaining lean muscle, or bettering their overall diet, many people believe there is some <em>secret </em>formula out there to better health. <br><br>There's really no secret, I promise. </div> <div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-none " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:center"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/inverted-row_orig.jpg" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph">Through my online<a target="_blank" href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/summitfit-boot-camp.html"> <font color="#c23b3b">boot camps</font></a>, <font color="#a82e2e"><a target="_blank" href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/nutrition.html"><font color="#a82e2e">VIP coaching program</font></a>,</font> and <a target="_blank" href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/fitness.html"><font color="#a82e2e">1-on-1 personal training</font></a>, I get the privilege of working with some amazing women who are motivated to make changes in their habits and overall lifestyles. <br><br>The trend I've noticed my clients who are the most successful at reaching their goals and maintaining lasting healthy lifestyles do two things consistently no matter what life throws at them. <br><br><u><strong>They Prioritize Healthy Living<br></strong></u>This might sound obvious, but the <em>biggest </em>reason you don't get something done that you want to get done is because it's simply not a priority. <br><br>For example, my clients who schedule the workouts I create for them in their calendar, get their fitness done. If you want to build lean muscle + burn fat at the same time, you must be making movement, specifically strength training, a part of your weekly routine. <br><br>If they work outside of the home, have small children, or tend to be on the go a lot, meal prepping on Sundays is something they also schedule and make happen. Grilling chicken or fish, baking sweet potatoes, cooking whole grains in bulk, making <a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/blog/mason-jar-salads" target="_blank"><font color="#a82e2e">mason jar salads</font></a>, etc just are a few of the things they spend an hour doing on Sunday. You will be really happy when you have healthy meals ready to pull out of the refrigerator each day of the week. <br><br><u><strong>They Maintain a Positive Mindset<br></strong></u>Again, another rather obvious thing to do, but how many people set health goals in January and never follow through with them long-term.<br><br>"I'm never going to lose this weight."<br><br>"I've tried exercise before, it didn't work."<br><br>"Eating healthy is too much work and not fun."<br><br>"My body will never look good."<br><br>You name it. The continual cycle of negative self talk will land you in a place of feeling defeated and eventually you will quit. Not because you couldn't make those changes and reach your goals, but because you talked yourself out of something good because it felt hard or worthless in the moment. <br><br>I can tell my clients to eat more of this, get off the couch, spend more time outside, practical stress-reducing habits, but if they are constantly down on themselves, they will never implement those habits longterm. <br><br>So, here's your virtual high five. I absolutely believe in you and know without a shadow of a doubt that you can achieve your potential in life. <br><br>If you are stuck on where to start and need a plan + support, I have a couple openings left for my VIP coaching. Send an email to rachel@rachelmeyerfitness.com to get started on a new journey. <br><br>Just this morning one of my VIP clients said this: <em><strong>I'm loving this new lifestyle. I feel like I have more energy. I know I am taking better care of myself. Just positive vibes all the way around.</strong></em><br><br>She gets that feeling better everyday is worth the fight. Reaching your potential is worth the fight and I'm here to make sure you are successful on your journey. <br> </div>

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Meal Planning Tip +Garlicky Crockpot Chicken Drumsticks Recipe

<div class="paragraph">Do you feel like you're always running around trying to figure out something healthy to eat that also tastes good and everyone else in the household will enjoy?<br><br>Join the club!<br><br>I've got a few tips for you that might help simplify meal planning for you. </div> <div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-none " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:center"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/chkn_orig.jpg" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph"> <span>My rule around here is if the protein is covered, the carbs and veggies can be easily thrown together. </span><br><br><span>For example, last night night we had this chicken recipe and it was a huge hit with everyone, including the toddlers. It's full of protein (obviously) and healthy fats from the grass-fed butter. </span><br><br><span>We served it with a side of sweet potatoes and steamed broccoli. The sweet potatoes were already made and the broccoli took no time to prepare. </span><br><br><span>The meat is what always seems to take time and energy to make. You have to thaw it out and cook it, which can be a long process from start to finish. I recommend having a solid game plan for your protein at each meal and then move down the list to plan veggies and carbs. </span><br><br><span>You can easily cook a large roast or whole chicken on Sundays to have meat to eat on through the week. We also like to keep frozen meatballs on hand for quick meals. Make sure and put crockpot meals like this on your list to keep busy nights simple in your home. <br><br><u><strong>Garlicky Crockpot Chicken Drumsticks</strong></u></span><br>10 Organic Chicken Drumsticks<br>3 T grass-fed butter, cut into small pieces<br>1 head of garlic, cloves separated but not peeled<br>1 cup bone broth<br>salt, pepper, parsley, onion powder, paprika to taste<br><br>Season chicken with salt, pepper, parsley, onion powder, and paprika to taste. <br><br>Add seasoned chicken to crockpot then pour in broth. Add butter and garlic cloves. <br><br>Cook on low for 4-6 hours--depending on strength of crockpot. I'm usually good with 4 hours as ours is a very hot crockpot (it's from Costco). <br><br>Serve with sweet or regular potatoes and a leafy green salad or sautéed vegetables. <br> </div>

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6 Reason You Aren't Losing Weight 

<div class="paragraph">There's nothing worse than setting goals, working hard to reach them, and then not seeing progress. <br><br>The fitness and health industry has, and continues to, feed us lies that leave us running around in circles with our habits.  Just when you think something is good, you read an article on mainstream media that it's not so good after all. </div> <div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-none " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:center"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/6-reasons-you-aren-t-losing-weight_orig.png" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph">Most of us now know that fat doesn't make us fat. However, when you've believed that fat makes you fat for the majority of your life, it's really hard to convince yourself that it's true-even if science says so. <br><br>When I tell my clients who aren't losing weight that they aren't eating enough fat, they often give me puzzled looks.<br><br>After a few weeks of increasing their fat intake among other changes, they see weight loss and are always pleasantly surprised by the fact that fat indeed isn't the reason they are overweight. <br><br>Many people view their health only by exterior changes. But can I just tell you a secret? Health absolutely comes from the inside out. There's no other way around it. <br><br>If you are losing weight but still feel like crap everyday, you are either taking some weird supplement or doing things in a really unhealthy manner that won't last long-term.<br><br>However, if you are feeling amazing, you <em>will</em> lose weight, burn fat, and get stronger over time. Even clients I've trained who take medications or have thyroid issues that cause weight gain have seen drops in weight and size with the programs I put them on. <br><br>Let's talk about 7 reasons you may not be losing weight:<br><br><strong>1. You have imbalanced macros. </strong><br><br>Macros are your fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. Most of the people I work with have significant imbalances when they first come to me.<br><br>I often see high carb and low protein + fat intakes. This is a disaster for your overall health and weight loss. <br><br>If my clients are low on protein and fats, I immediately help them get those numbers up and they see weight loss, improvements in concentration and energy levels, a decrease in sugar cravings, and more toned muscles. <br><br>By focusing on more protein and good fats, we immediately crowd out the heavy carb intakes. <br><br><strong>2. You have poor gut health. </strong><br><br>Scientists now call the gut our "second brain." This topic is at the core of my programs because without teaching proper gut health, I'm doing my clients a disservice, especially when it comes to them losing weight. <strong> </strong><br><br>Gut health is going to affect your immunity, energy levels, skin, weight loss around midsection, moods (think anxiety and depression), mental clarity and memory, heart health, and more. <br><br>In your gut resides good and bad bacteria. When the bad bacteria overpowers the good, you start getting sick more often. Your body holds on to weight around your midsection. Your mind feels foggy. Your overall health declines. <br><br>Through good quality probiotics, decreasing stress levels, eating a nutrition diet, and an increase in fermented foods (kefir, kombucha, raw sauerkraut, yogurt, etc), I'm able to help my clients get healthy from the inside out.<strong> </strong><br><br><strong>3. You aren't consistent with your habits. </strong><br><br>If I decided to take a week or two off from coaching my clients, posting blogs and information on social media, and developing programs behind the scenes, my business would not grow. <br><br>Likewise, if you are taking a week/month or two off of moving your body regularly, eating healthy foods, and improving your overall habits, your health will suffer the consequences. <br><br>Consistency is absolutely key with any healthy lifestyle. Weight loss is something that comes with time, but if you don't give any time to living healthy, don't expect results. <br><br><strong>4. You spend too much time doing cardio. </strong><br><br>Spending 45 to an hour on an elliptical or treadmill everyday is going to cause your body to lose muscle and in return you won't be burning as much fat. <br><br>In my boot camp programs as well as my VIP coaching, I have my clients doing a combination of sprinting, metabolic, and heavy lifting routines. The key is short and sweet. <br><br>Now, some of you might be thinking, <em>I can't sprint</em> or <em>I don't have a gym to lift heavy weights so that won't work</em>. The good news is, you only need to sprint for a short amount of time, which can be done on any machine or via a specific movement in your living room instead of actual sprints.<br><br>Heavy lifting simply means we are burning out the muscle instead of just doing a few bicep curls with 2.5 lb dumbbells. This type of lifting can be done in your living room with no equipment. <br><br><strong>5. You eat from the moment you wake up until you go to bed. </strong><br><br>Do you start eating at 6 am and graze all the way till bedtime at 9 or 10pm? Here's the deal, your body is either digesting food or burning fat. It can't do both. When you spend the majority of your hours eating, your body has no time to burn fat, recalibrate it's systems, digest, regenerate new cells, and heal itself. <br><br>Depending on the client, I often recommend my clients shorten their feeding periods to 8-10 hours and then spend the rest of the time not eating or just lightly snacking depending on the needs and goals. <br><br>This is a lifestyle I have followed most of my life without even knowing it's benefit, but now with the <a target="_blank" href="https://authoritynutrition.com/10-health-benefits-of-intermittent-fasting/"><font color="#8d2424">research being done on the amazing benefits of intermittent fasting</font></a>, I now incorporate this into my clients programs with awesome results. <br><br>If the word "fasting" intimidates you, just realize, you aren't really fasting, you are just shortening your feeding period while still eating the <u>same amount of calories</u>. I find this simplifies my clients schedules as they aren't always freaking out about eating every 3 hours to keep their metabolism up (which is a complete myth). <br><br>Many other cultures eat a big afternoon meal but might skip breakfast and only have a smaller snack in the early evening. This mythical idea that we always need to be eating to keep up our blood sugars and metabolism is not only impractical but has caused a lot of damage to our health. <br><br><strong>6. You aren't sleeping enough and are chronically stressed. </strong><br><br>Lack of sleep and stress is a huge crisis in America. Between the long work hours, commuting, running our kids to a million activities, and trying to maintain other responsibilities, we often neglect our sleep and sanity in order to <em>get stuff done</em>. <br><br>May I suggest that you will be more productive in all areas of your life if you just prioritize 7-8 hours of sleep per night + a daily relaxing activity?<br><br>This is a topic we hit hard in my online boot camp programs because if a client is lacking in sl eep + chronically stressed, this means their cortisol levels are through the roof and weight loss isn't going to come easy. <br><br>When you sleep, your body restores, heals, and organizes itself.<br><br>Are you trying to come up with an idea? Sleep on it.<br><br>Trying to shed those last 5-10 pounds? Sleep on it (just not too much sleep).<br><br>Do you have sore muscles or an injury? Sleep on it. <br><br>I hope this was helpful. Which of these 6 areas could you be more proactive in?<br><br>If you would like to implement these concepts plus get accountability, support, education, and an effective plan, grab your spot now to join my next <a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/summitfit-boot-camp.html" target="_blank"><font color="#8d2424">4-week boot camp</font></a> starting January 2nd. We would absolutely LOVE to have you! <br><br><br><br><br> </div>

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Summit Fit Boot Camp + Sourdough Waffle Breakfast Sandwich 

<div class="paragraph">A lot of my clients come to me scared to death of eating fat or carbs and really just any food that tastes good in general. <br><br>For 50+ years we were told to eat margarine and vegetable oils instead of butter, low-fat instead of whole, and lean meats instead of beef and pork , because apparently real food from nature causes obesity and heart-disease but a rancid, chemical-laden processed substance like margarine is good for the waist-line. <br><br>I like to squash those lies right into the ground. </div> <div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-none " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:center"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/classic-quick-easy-1_orig.png" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph">If you are running in circles trying to lose weight and feeling guilty every time you enjoy a nutritious food like egg yolks, whole milk, bread, and butter, I'm here to tell you that's no way to live. <br><br>You see, low-carb and deprivation diets don't work. They never have and never will. <br><br>It's human nature to want to rebel when being restricted from something we love. If you take away all of my fats and carbs, the only thing I can think about is eating more fats and carbs. <br><br>Through my <font color="#8d2424"><a target="_blank" href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/summitfit-boot-camp.html"><font color="#8d2424">online boot camps</font></a> </font>and <a target="_blank" href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/nutrition.html"><font color="#8d2424">VIP coaching</font></a>, I teach clients how to enjoy the foods they love while reducing sugar cravings and taking control of their food choices. <br><br>Do you frequently feel like you just can't stop eating? Does food seem to have more control over you than you over it? <br><br>Let's put a stop to that cycle. My January boot camp is filling up quickly but there are still some spots to grab if you want to finally get the support, accountability, and plan you need to create a healthy lifestyle in 2017 and beyond. <br><br>There are no shakes, weird products, or deprivation diets involved. I give you a plan that works that can fit into any busy lifestyle. <br><br><u><strong>We will be:</strong></u><br>1. Creating a healthy balance of macros to help you build lean muscle, burn fat effectively, reduce sugar cravings, and feel more in control of your foods. <br>2. Engaging in effective, quick workouts that build muscle and burn fat + get you feeling strong and confident. <br>3. Building healthy gut flora to help you shed weight around the mid-section and improve overall health (think: energy levels, digestion, anxiety, moods, and skin tone)<br>4. Practicing new habits that reduce stress, improve mindset, and create more simplicity in your schedule. <br><br>Email me at rachel@rachelmeyerfitness.com to grab a spot in the January 2nd group. You get $20 off if you bring a friend!<br><br><u><strong>Sourdough Breakfast Sandwiches</strong></u><br>1/2 of a <a target="_blank" href="http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/classic-sourdough-waffles-or-pancakes-recipe"><font color="#a82e2e">sourdough waffle</font></a><font color="#a82e2e"> </font><font color="#2a2a2a">(I make these and then freeze leftover for these sandwiches)<br>1 pasture-raised egg, cooked over-medium<br>1-2 slices of bacon</font><br>maple syrup + grass-fed butter<br><br>Make waffles ahead of time and freeze. Microwave frozen waffle to thaw and then spread with butter on the inside. Add 1 egg and bacon between two pieces of waffle. Drizzle sandwich with pure maple syrup and serve!</div>

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Superfood Oatmeal

<div class="paragraph">My husband is one of those people who likes his oatmeal the exact same way every time he eats it. <br><br>Bananas, honey, and milk. <br><br>I on the other hand, treat my oats like a piece of bread. The toppings that can go on are endless and I'm always amazed at the new combinations that have me doing happy dances in my kitchen. </div> <div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-none " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:center"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/classic-quick-easy-2_1_orig.png" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph">This oatmeal recipe would be perfect to enjoy right after a workout. It is high is carbohydrates and healthy fats with 19 grams of protein. <br><br>I would choose to eat this after a resistance training workout to replenish the glycogen (carb) stores in my muscles. By consuming your high-carb meals <u><em>after a hard workout</em></u>, your body immediately turns it into <em><u>fuel for your muscles</u></em> instead of fat. <br><br><u><strong>Chocolate Peanut Butter Superfood Oatmeal<br></strong></u><em>Serves 2 (the toppings serve 1)<br></em><br>1 tsp grass-fed butter<br>1 and 1/2 cups water<br>1 cup rolled oats<br>handful of raisins<br>pinch of salt<br><u><strong>Toppings (per bowl):</strong></u><br>1 tsp cocoa powder (or do a scoop of chocolate whey protein to really increase the protein in this recipe) <br>1 T peanut butter<br>1 T full-fat yogurt<br>1 tsp bee pollen<br>1 tsp hemp seeds<br>1/2 tsp maple syrup <br><br>1. Bring water to a boil. Add oats, butter, salt, and raisins. Continually stir until oats are soft and the consistency you like (about 5 minutes). <br><br>2. Add all of your toppings and enjoy! </div>

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Steak Salad with Broccolini

<div class="paragraph">I like my salads <em>big</em> and <em>juicy</em>. Gone are the days of eating iceberg lettuce with a few sprinkles of veggies and low-fat dressing. <br><br>No wonder people don't want to eat healthy. <br><br>We grow up thinking veggies come from a can thanks to school lunches. Then we tell adults to stop eating fat or anything else that's enjoyable so we end up resorting to a life of eating crap because, it's not <em>really</em> possible to eat healthy and enjoy it, right?</div> <div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-none " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:center"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/steaksalad_orig.jpg" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph">With that said, enjoy this crunchy, flavorful, and nutrient-packed meal! Healthy food tastes <em>gooood</em>, I promise. <br><br><u><strong>Steak and Broccolini Salad</strong></u><br>2-3 cups of dark leafy greens (spinach, arugula, swiss chard, romaine, etc)<br>1 cup baby broccoli, destemmed<br>1/2 cup sliced carrots<br>1/2 cup grape tomatoes<br>1/8 cup sliced almonds<br>1 tsp feta cheese<br>1 cup steak, cooked and sliced (or animal protein of choice)<br>dressing of choice<br> </div>

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Grass-Fed Parmesan Meatballs

<div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-none " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:center"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/meatballs_orig.jpg" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph"> <u><strong>Grass-Fed Parmesan Meatballs</strong></u><br><em>serves 4<br></em><br>1 lb grass-fed beef<br>2 eggs (pasture-raised if possible)<br>1/2 cup parmesan cheese<br>1 cup panko bread crumbs<br>1/2 onion, shredded or finely chopped<br>3 garlic cloves, minced<br>1 T dijon mustard<br>1 tsp salt<br>1/2 tsp oregano<br>1/2 tsp pepper<br>1 T milk <br>1/8 cup dried parsley<br><br>1. Mix all ingredients. Roll into 18-20 meatballs.<br><br>2. Place in an square baking dish and bake for 25 minutes at 350 uncovered. <br><br>Serve with garlic mash potatoes and <font color="#8d2424"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/blog/steak-salad-with-broccolini" target="_blank"><font color="#8d2424">side salad.</font></a> </font> </div>

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3 Morning Habits forWeight Loss

<div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> <div id="557558942704589642-gallery" class="imageGallery" style="line-height: 0px; padding: 0; margin: 0"> <div id="557558942704589642-imageContainer0" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="557558942704589642-insideImageContainer0" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/lemon-water_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery557558942704589642]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/lemon-water.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="400" _height="300" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100%;top:0%;left:0%"></a></div></div></div></div> <div id="557558942704589642-imageContainer1" style="float:left;width:49.95%;margin:0;"><div id="557558942704589642-insideImageContainer1" style="position:relative;margin:5px;"><div class="galleryImageHolder" style="position:relative; width:100%; padding:0 0 75%;overflow:hidden;"><div class="galleryInnerImageHolder"><a href="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/gym_2_orig.jpg" rel="lightbox[gallery557558942704589642]" onclick="if (!window.lightboxLoaded) return false"><img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/gym_2.jpg" class="galleryImage" _width="206" _height="257" style="position:absolute;border:0;width:100%;top:-33.17%;left:0%"></a></div></div></div></div> <span style="display: block; clear: both; height: 0px; overflow: hidden;"></span> </div> <div style="height: 20px; overflow: hidden;"></div> </div> <div class="paragraph">Mornings are the best time of day to set yourself up for success. For me, I define a successful day by two things: how I felt + my productivity level. And those two things are directly correlated. <br><br>When your body is running like a well oiled machine, weight loss will naturally happen if it needs to. However, when the liver, immune system, and digestion system get overwhelmed, things start looking quite ugly with our health. <br><br>Unfortunately we often cannot eliminate things like processed foods, lack of sleep, stress, and environmental toxins that tax our liver, but, we can support the body and keep is running smooth despite those things. <br><br>So, what are 3 morning habits that can help keep the body running it's best?<br><br><strong>1. Drink luke-warm lemon water. </strong><br><br>Drink it before you eat as it helps stimulate the gall bladder to release bile which helps burn and regulate fat + stimulate digestion. Lemon itself is also very detoxifying and cleansing to the body. <br><br><strong>2. Let your digestive system rest. </strong><br><br>Americans often spend the majority of their waking hours eating. The problem is you do not give your body time to <u>heal, burn fat, and digest</u> when you are always eating. Your body is either burning fat or digesting food, it <em>can't</em> do both.  <br><br>I suggest making your morning a time of productivity instead of trying to cram in another meal as you have the most energy and mental focus in the earlier hours of the day. <br><br>Try to eat within an 8-10 hour window each day with a 16-18 hour fasting period. I personally like a 12-8pm feeding window as it frees us my mornings for productivity (blog, work on client programs, take kids to school, hike, run errands, do a short sprint workout) and then I eat my normal amount of calories from 12-8 giving me a couple of hours between my last meal and bedtime.  <br><br><strong>3. Spend 10 minutes reading an inspiration book. </strong><br><br>Truly, if you don't have the right mindset for your day, your choices will more than likely not be the best. I always tell my clients that weight loss comes from the inside out, not the other way around. <br><br>I'm currently reading <a target="_blank" href="https://www.amazon.com/Habits-Highly-Effective-People-Powerful/dp/0743269519"><font color="#8d2424">this book</font> </a>and loving it's principles. It really does make a difference to spend time filling up your tank each day. </div>

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5 Reasons to Drink Lemon Water Every Morning

<div class="paragraph">I absolutely <em>love</em> routine. I think it is so crucial for creating a life of healthy habits and simplifying our overall schedule. <br><br>One of my favorite morning habits is drinking warm lemon water <em>before</em> my coffee. Because my first meal of the day is usually at noon, I carve out very intentional habits during my mornings. I spend my mornings working, hydrating, and learning before my family gets up. <br><br>Here's a little peak into my current morning routine:<br><br>Wake up around 4:45 and work until 6:30 (blog, create new online workouts, develop material for VIP program, research health topics, etc)<br>Drink warm lemon water <br>15 minutes of reading time<br>Make breakfast for kiddos<br>Enjoy morning coffee with hubby</div> <div><div class="wsite-image wsite-image-border-border-width:0 " style="padding-top:10px;padding-bottom:10px;margin-left:0;margin-right:0;text-align:left"> <a> <img src="http://www.rachelmeyerfitness.com/uploads/1/7/3/9/1739499/1479740695.png" alt="Picture" style="width:auto;max-width:100%"></a> <div style="display:block;font-size:90%"></div> </div></div> <div class="paragraph">Drinking lemon water is not something I came up with on my own. There is research behind it as to why it's a very beneficial component to a healthy diet. <br><br>So, what are the benefits of drinking lemon water?<br><br><strong>1. It stimulates the gall bladder to release bile.</strong><br><br>Why is this important? Because bile has your body effectively breakdown fat. If your body is storing excess fat, especially around the midsection, this is setting you up for chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease. <br><br><strong>2. It promotes healthy digestion. </strong><br><br>If your body is not properly digesting food, you will again be storing excess fat and be dealing with issues such as IBS, chronic bloating, and food allergies. The lemon stimulates your digestive system to get its act in gear!<br><br><strong>3. It detoxes (cleanses) the body. </strong><br><br>The word "detox" gets thrown around a lot but lemon works magic in cleansing your body which in return will produce skin that glows, decrease bloating, increase energy levels and mental clarity, and help your body run like a well oiled machine. <br><br><strong>4. It provides a dose of nice dose Vitamin C. <br></strong><br>Vitamin C is helpful in supporting healthy adrenal glands and negating the effects of stress. Healthy adrenal glands are tied directly to your energy levels. If you battle with chronic fatigue, that's your body's way of telling you that things are off. <br><br><strong>5. Boosts your metabolism. <br></strong><br>Staying hydrated keeps your metabolism humming for better weight loss. You don't need to add lemon to the water to reap this benefit, but the lemon is obviously a wonderful addition!<br> </div>

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