Categories
Recipes

Hearty Rosemary Vegetable Soup

I dub theeee homemade soup the ultimate isolation comfort food. This soup is a cross between a soup and a stew. I like my soups nice and thick and hearty and this one turned out perfect.

To be completely honest I didn’t make this recipe with the intentions of blogging it or putting it on my site buttt… It turned out so well I just had to share.

There is a secret recipe to this soup though. Not all will have this ingredient but if you do it really takes the soup to a new level. Adding a little source of fat to any broth type of soup will give it a hint of creaminess and bring out the other flavours as well if salted just right.

What is my secret ingredient you ask?

This fourth and heart Himalayan pink salt grass fed ghee butter. Sooo delicious!

If you don’t have this product you can replace with any other margarine or butter.

This is a great and easy slow cooker meal that is super comforting for the whole family to enjoy!

Serves 6 big bowls

Cals per serving 260

Carbs 40g

Fat 9g

Protein 10g

Ingredients:

3 medium russet or white potatoes

5 medium carrots

½ cup lentils

1 can chickpeas

4 tsp oxo chicken in a mug (or 4 cups chicken stock instead of water)

4 cups water

2 tbsp rosemary

Salt and pepper to taste

2 tbsp ghee

Chop potatoes and carrots into little cube sized pieces. Place into a slow cooker along with either water and chicken in a mug OR chicken stock. Add chickpeas and rosemary and stir. Set slow cooker for 7 hours on medium to low setting. Stir every couple hours if you can. One hour prior to the soup finishing add lentils and stir. Once the soup is finished and veggies are tender melt the ghee butter in and salt and pepper to taste.

Enjoy!!!

Categories
Exercise

Isn’t that NEAT?

NEAT or Non Exercise Activity Thermogenesis

What is it and why is it so important? 

When we look at weight loss, we look at four different components that we can manipulate to lose weight. Those are intentional exercise, thermogenic foods, basal metabolic rate, and non exercise activity thermogenesis.

The NEAT component is basically all movements that are not intended to be exercise but burn calories. These include and are not limited to walking to your car, taking the stairs at work, cleaning the house, taking out the garbage, walking to the mailbox, standing up from the couch, and playing with your dogs. NEAT is also chewing your food, fidgeting, adjusting your body to get comfortable, scratching, and typing. 

So basically ALL movements done by the body unintentionally and/or not meant as to be exercise.

Movements like these surprisingly can help you burn more calories and help you reach your weight loss goals. You would be surprised how much energy you can burn and how much little things add up quickly. The more you move your body the more calories you will burn, the more weight you could potentially lose IF adhering to your nutrition AND exercise goals.

This is the reason why you will hear fitness experts telling you to park in the furthest parking spot, take the stairs at work, offer to run something down to the mailroom at work, ditch the remote for your TV and stand to change the channel. They understand that every movement counts for something and it is true.

Increasing your NEAT can be as simple as taking the dogs for an extra walk around the block. Play a little harder with your kids at the park. Got cleaning to do? Scrub the shit out of your toilet bowl. There are so many little things you can do to get moving a little more and get you on your way to more weight loss or fitness success.

NEAT is especially important to look at if you have a sedentary job. Think of how many hours you spend barely moving your body. You must be aware of this and try your best to make up for it during the rest of your day. People with sedentary jobs may need to look a lot more at intentionally exercising on top of increasing their NEAT. 

DO NOT underestimate the POWER of movement. If you’re a beginner to exercising or thinking about improving your physique or losing weight, you may even want to just start with being conscious of how much you’re moving and try to run a few more little errands throughout the day or clean your house a little more even! What a double whammy that one would be!

xoxo

Frecklefit

Categories
Recipes

Chicken Zucchini Quinoa Casserole

Sooo some of you may have seen me demo this on my instagram page the other day. I literally made it up on the spot with leftover things I had kicking around in my fridge and freezer. I did not anticipate it turning out like it did.

So freakin delicious!! It’s packed with protein. The spiralled zucchini made it totally fun too. A great an easy meal to take with a couple different moving parts.

To break this meal down into prepped steps so your not doing all at once here is what you do:

In the morning throw the chicken in the slow cooker with ingredients listed and cook all day until chicken is shreddable.

In the morning you can also put a pot of quinoa on. For two cups of cooked quinoa cook approximately 1/2 cup quinoa with 1 cup of water. You can cook it right in the chicken stock to save the seasoning step.

Then enjoy the day.

Later when your ready for dinner. Peel or spiral your zucchini and toss everything together and warm through in the oven!

Here is the full recipe:

Serves 4

Cals per serving 287

Carbs 23g

Fat 7g

Protein 39g

Ingredients:

12 ounces of chicken or 2 big chicken breasts

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp onion powder

2 tsp basil

1 tsp chilli flakes

2 tsp salt

2 small/medium zucchini

1 tsp salt

Pepper

2 tsp apple cider vinegar 

2 cups cooked quinoa

1 tsp chicken in a mug

½ cup feta cheese

Cook chicken with all seasonings in an instant pot or slow cooker so you’re able to shred after cooked. Spiralize or peel zucchini so it’s in string type shape. Toss with salt, pepper, and ACV. Season cooked quinoa with chicken in a mug. Once chicken is cooked and shredded, toss all ingredients together in a baking dish. Sprinkle feta on top and bake at 425 for 7-10 minutes.

Enjoyyy!

Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

Rethink your meals!

Meal 1: Breakfast
Protein sources: high protein bread, wow butter, egg whites
Meal 2: Second Breakfast
Protein source: nitrite free deli honey ham
Meal 3: Lunch
Protein Source: High protein muffins containing eggs, cottage cheese, quinoa
Meal 4: Supper
Protein source: Chicken breast
Meal 5: Second Supper
Protein source: Higher protein homemade muffin, wow butter

When I was growing up my meals consisted of breakfast, lunch, and supper. Like most families. Sometimes there would be after school snacks or bed time snacks thrown in but meals were meals and snacks were snacks.

Meals were always big. They always were portioned with your carbs, proteins, and sometimes fats (or things were cooked with oil).

Snacks were snacky foods. Crackers, cheese, popcorn etc. They were supposed to be small but didn’t always end up that way. I think the term used now is “snackcident”.

I think a lot of us grew up with this framework of eating and grew accustom to it. I eat in a very similar way still but instead my five meals are what I consider “meals”.

Here is my definition of meal:

  1. In a “meal” there should ALWAYS be a source of protein.
  2. It should be portioned in a way that you can have five in a day without over eating
  3. It should completely satiate you (you should feel satisfied after and not “still hungry”)

The reason why I like to refer this eating pattern as meals rather than snacks is that I find snacking can get way out of control. If you throw in a snack here and there I find it either doesn’t fill you up and leaves you really hungry before your next meal and causes over eating. Or secondly you mindlessly munch without portioning and end up eating more snacks and eat more during those snack period sometimes than you would during a meal.

The best way that I find to eat or lay out my day of eating is to aim to eat every three or four hours. This makes for your five meals per day. These meals are planned and portioned so you don’t have any “snackcidents” or overeating incidents.

Every time you start eating your body starts a whole process of releasing certain digestive hormones, secreting insulin to control blood sugars, and inducing protein synthesis. This is important in terms of controlling blood sugars and with building muscle as well.

When you include a protein with every meal and are turning on protein synthesis just by eating. You are aiding in maintaining or building a leaner physique (accompanied by training of course). Not to mention this way of eating is also a lot easier on your digestive system.

Unless you are an intermittent faster and that works and is sustainable for you to do long term. Consider eating five small meals per day. Never let yourself get too hungry and get creative with your meals too.

One great idea that saves some brain work and planning is to plan out to have the same meal twice in one day. Especially if it’s tacos… Each taco here contains just under 500 calories and has 28 grams of protein each. Perfectly portioned each but would be way to much for one meal. Also was super psyched to have this meal twice.

Eating or feeding doesn’t always have to look like breakfast, lunch, and supper. Save yourself from mindlessly snacking all day. Think outside the box and think more about portion sizing and fully satisfying yourself with each and every meal.

Happy Eats!

Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

Isolation Routines

Things have been so different for everybody these days during the world pandemic. Everyone is forced to stay inside most of the day which means doing what you normally would have done in a day has drastically changed. People are forced out of their daily routines and frankly a lot of people have lost routine altogether.

I truly believe that having a daily routine helps to keep you grounded. It helps with anxiety and panic and also helps with productivity and planning. Not only is routine great for adults but especially for kids as well.

Now that were right in the middle (or maybe the beginning) of all this, who knows, we should all be striving to come up with some sort of routine to organize the day and keep yourself from losing sight on your future goals and dreams.

It’s very easy to fall into the trap of not knowing what to do next so I’m going to just watch Netflix all day. Very appealing as well but where is that going to get you when all of this ends?

This pandemic is the PERFECT opportunity for so many to grow. To learn about things you’ve been wanting to learn about. To take that online course you wanted to try out. To read that book you’ve been eyeing up for months now. To start writing the book you always wanted to write. To write some music, poems, journal entries whatever it is. Keep your brain active, follow what your passionate about, and get INSPIRED!

Now that I have finished up my job and am laying low for the next few weeks it took me a few days but I have a great routine in place. It took trial and error but I am now embracing this time to the FULLEST.

Here is an example of my daily routine:

  1. Wake up and meditate
  2. Make a big breakfast and eat on my couch in front of my big window
  3. Make a coffee and write, blog, or read
  4. Mix up some BCAAs and workout
  5. Make lunch and eat
  6. Take the dogs for a nice long walk

That’s it and the rest is open for whatever!

This routine is GREAT for me but all routines should fit your own lifestyle and habits. There are a few non negotiable that should ABSOLUTELY be included in your daily routine.

  1. Meditate or take some quiet time for yourself (ESPECIALLY if you have kids you need that break)
  2. Move your body – doesn’t have to be a big intense work out everyday but a walk/bike ride or a yoga session etc.
  3. Exercise your brain (read or write)

If your stuck on the Netflix wagon try to set some guidelines for yourself. Make yourself read at least one chapter or article BEFORE watching any TV for the day. Or make yourself get your exercise in FIRST. Then you can enjoy your Netflix guilt free.

I know these are trying times for everybody and there is so much uncertainty out there but coming up with a good routine and keeping yourself well mentally and physically is the best thing you can do to come out of this even better!

Use this time to your advantage as much as you can and don’t take the extra time at home for granted!

xoxoxo

Frecklefit