Happy Halloween!

I’m just stopping by to wish you all a happy and healthy Halloween!

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If you have kids, how do you plan on staying away from their candy loot? It’s so tempting, they will never notice a missing piece… or is that the lie we tell ourselves?

I think my own plan is to focus on healthier “treats” I can have, such as fruit, yogurt, and applesauce. Plus focusing on water helps me too. If I crave something, I usually can squelch the craving by telling myself to drink a certain amount of water and/or do a certain activity before I can have a small amount of whatever it is.

~Bonnie~

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Best Way to Cook Chicken

Okay so it’s not the best way to cook chicken per se, but it is my favorite way to cook it in a healthy way, which is simply to bake it in the oven. This way is so healthy, easy, and tasty at the same time!

Here’s what I do:

  1. First I preheat the oven to 350˚F.
  2. Then I rinse the chicken and cut it up into whatever size piece works, unless I use tenderloins which don’t need to be cut.
  3. Place the pieces on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with non-stick spray.
  4. Season the pieces with whatever I want to use, usually pepper, garlic, or Italian seasoning or a combination because that’s what we have on hand here.
  5. Throw it in the oven once I’m sure it has adequately preheated.
  6. Cook for 15 minutes, sometimes 20 minutes depending on the size but they are always ready by then!

They always come out juicy and tasty, without using any oil or marinade. This way won’t work for everyone and I don’t have fancy tastes, but it works for moments when things are crazy and we need a healthy home cooked meal!

juicy baked chicken

Now, here’s some of the dishes I love to eat with my chicken:

  • Chicken salad with whatever veggies we have: lettuce, cucumber, and tomato is my favorite. I use light ranch dressing because I prefer it over all else and it’s only 80 calories for two tablespoons.
  • Brown rice + baked chicken + veggies: I love putting cauliflower, broccoli, and/or corn in this dish! You could even stir fry it in a skillet.
  • Noodles + baked chicken + veggies: This I can use any veggie and it tastes good: green beans, broccoli, carrots, corn, etc. Preferably you would use whole grain/wheat noodles if you chose to do this, but sometimes when we don’t have that I’ve been known to cook half a package of Ramen noodles plain, no seasoning. Now I know they aren’t healthy at all but it works in a pinch. This could also be cooked as a stir fry with the right noodles!
  • White chicken chili: I need to find and share this recipe with you all because it is so tasty. You could do a search online and find one too but I will be posting this in a future post!

There are countless other dishes to mix the chicken with as well, like a ton of chicken casseroles or other recipes, but these are my favorites!

~Bonnie~

Upcoming Events: Q+A and Party

Be the Best You has some super exciting upcoming  Facebook events on the schedule:

Up first is the Be the Best You: Office Hours (Q+A) on November from 5-8pm US Central time.

  

You will be able to ask me anything about weight loss and healthy living, and as always I will do my best to answer them!

Click here for this event: Be the Best You: Office Hours Event
Next is Be the Best You: the Party on Wednesday, November 18th from 5-8pm US Central time.

  
The party will be us all helping each other with advice, tips, conversation, and fun! I will be making a special freebie just for the event for all who attend and one lucky winner will win a free Be the Best You product as well!

Click here for this event: Be the Best You: the Party

As it says in the information in each event, feel free to share with or invite others! The more the merrier!

If you can’t attend one or both and are interested, keep in mind I will be setting up more events in the future at different times. Also if you have a time and day of the week you would prefer, leave me a comment and I will do my best to make it happen.

I will likely do a minimum of one of each type of event per month from here on out… Next I will be trying my hand at a Twitter Chat though so if you have a time/day preference for that, comment here!

Be sure to let me know which social media you’re referring to if you want me to do it at a certain time (Facebook/Twitter) or if you have a different social media website altogether that you would like as well. I will do my best to make this easy and fun for all!

~Bonnie~

Celebrate Your Victories

It is so important to continuing our weight loss journeys to celebrate all of our victories.

celebrate your victories

Whether they be the big ones like weight loss milestones of 10 or 20 pounds, or running a whole mile… or the small ones such as eating three fruits or veggies in one day or completing a tough workout.

This doesn’t necessarily mean you need to go out and spend money every time you experience a victory, but you should definitely give yourself a high-five or a pat on the back for a job well done!

Remember that every step you make in the right direction adds up as you go along. All of it is worth celebrating!

My personal philosophy is to focus mainly on non-scale victories because they are the ones we have most control over. However, it is fun to celebrate when you hit a new weight loss milestone.

Some victories to celebrate that have nothing to do with the scale:

  • Eating a certain amount of healthy foods each day.
  • Finishing a hard workout.
  • Eating within your calorie range for days at a time.
  • Starting a new exercise routine.
  • Pushing harder during a normal workout.
  • Trying a new healthy food.
  • Doing your workout when you don’t feel like it.
  • Drinking enough water for the day.
  • Simply feeling stronger or healthier!

I could go on and on, but you get the idea! Anything that is not related to the scale is a double victory, and the scale itself is a fun way to track trends in your weight and to celebrate when it goes the right way… but to take in stride and use as just a tool. You can only do your best and sometimes the scale may not reflect that, so that’s why it’s vital to depend on the other victories in your journey.

~Bonnie~

Virtual Weight Loss Support Group

virtual weight loss support group

I am taking a survey for a “service” I would like to provide to others on their weight loss journeys. Please leave me a comment or email answering the questions or simply stating if this would be of value to you. The online support group for weight loss would be either in video or chat form. I have to figure out where to host this service but already have two or three ideas, and will be keeping you up-to-date as I figure it out!

I would also provide healthy living tools and/or challenges each week to keep incentive and motivation as high as possible. Ideally I would provide at least two meeting times each week for this support group to meet up online, such as at least one morning and one evening time, but maybe even a weekend meeting.

All information will be used to best serve you! If you use the contact form below or the survey link, the information will also be kept completely confidential.

Here is the survey link: Weight Loss Support Group Survey. I tested it and it just takes a couple minutes with only six questions!

And here is the contact form if you want to email me directly!

Thank you in advance for any feedback! Here is my contact form so you can email me directly if you prefer that over leaving a comment with your answers.

~Bonnie~

Goals E-Course to Set You Up for Success

My Goals to Become the Best You e-course is LIVE!

Goals to Become the Best You course cover

If you’re having trouble setting goals that help you move forward, or are getting discouraged very easily, this is the course for you! We all have times where something just doesn’t click and a little help and guidance goes a long way!

The course is geared towards weight loss and healthy living goals, but the process can be applied to any type of goal as well: career, home, life, etc.

There is a 16 page workbook + guide inside the course itself that will guide you through a step-by-step process to make and pursue goals in a way that works for you! Not to mention, many separate resources as well! You will also get a community section to post questions and ask for help, which I will be checking on a regular basis to help give you even more personal guidance!

All this for the low introductory price of $30!

Check it out here: Goals to Become the Best You Course.

~Bonnie~

The Sisterhood of the World Blogging Award

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I have been nominated for this award by http://www.itsgoodtobecrazysometimes.wordpress.com. Thank you for the nomination!

Rules:

  1. Thank the nominator and link their blog to your post.
  2. Answer the 10 questions given to you.
  3. Pass the award on to as many bloggers as you went and let them know.
  4. Include the logo of the award in a post or on your blog.

My questions from my nominator:

  1. What is you favorite time of the day? Night time, when it’s quiet and I can be my most thoughtful.
  2. If you were immortal for a day what would you do? Skydive and take one of those dangerous hikes I see on Facebook or Pinterest from time to time.
  3. What did you want to be growing up? Artist, veterinarian, and novelist (just to name a few!)
  4. What was the last tv show, book or movie to make you well up? Fast & Furious 7, the tribute to Paul Walker at the end.
  5. Where’s Waldo (Wally)? In his book, of course!
  6. If you could of personally witnessed anything what would it be? I would have to say the Women’s Rights Movement.
  7. Who is your hero? My mom. She is strong and loving.
  8. You can pick one person from history and have them truthfully answer one question. Who would you select and what would it be? This one was hard, I’m not big on history, but I will say Amelia Earhart, and ask her how she had so much faith in herself to take the flights she did.
  9. If you joined the circus what act would you do? Lion Tamer sounds fun, but honestly I wouldn’t be brave enough so maybe a Magician Assistant.
  10. What do you think Victoria’s secret is? Contrary to popular belief on Facebook, I don’t think that it’s because she’s hungry haha, but I think her secret is she has no secret!

So my Nominees are:

https://lifeasiinterpret.wordpress.com

http://www.bandedcarolinagirl.wordpress.com

http://www.thinkdowrite.wordpress.com

And my questions for you all are:

  1. What was your favorite childhood book?
  2. Are you a night owl or a morning person?
  3. Which do you prefer, coffee or tea?
  4. Where in the world do you want to visit the most?
  5. Which do you prefer, cats or dogs?
  6. If you were to dress up for Halloween this year, what would you be?
  7. Which would you rather do: skydive, bungee jump, or hang glide?
  8. What is your favorite holiday?
  9. What is the last book you read?
  10. How many children do (or did) you want?

~Bonnie~

One Lovely Blog Award

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I was nominated by https://lifeasiinterpret.wordpress.com for the One Lovely Blog Award, thank you so much! I feel honored and had fun doing this… although it was hard to get started, as it usually is when I’m “talking” about myself 🙂

Here are the rules for this award:
Thank the blogger who nominated you for the award.

Display the banner/sticker/logo on your blog.

Share 7 facts or things about yourself.

Nominate 5 bloggers that you admire and inform nominees by commenting on their blog.

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7 Facts About Me:

  1. I am a total bookworm… but only when I have time.
  2. I enjoy learning and researching.
  3. I am a Christian, only recently so but learning a lot as I go along.
  4. I am an Introvert, through and through. I’m learning to use this to my advantage or to work around it so I can enjoy life more!
  5. While I’m a Californian, through and through, I currently live in Indiana and have for over five years now.
  6. My favorite type of book is mystery.
  7. I have learned, and continue to learn, a lot about health and fitness. So much so that it has become one of my biggest passions!

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My nominees:

  1. http://www.itsgoodtobecrazysometimes.wordpress.com
  2. http://www.ameasuredlife.com
  3. http://www.mommylanesadventures.wordpress.com
  4. http://www.losing4christ.wordpress.com
  5. http://www.kwoted.wordpress.com

~Bonnie~

Be the Best You Newsletter + Free Download

Hello everyone,

I just wanted to let you know that I have spruced up my weekly newsletter by adding a free download to it.

What will you get?

  • A pretty weight chart to log your weights. I have done this myself and it helps me to see trends in my weight and just feel like I’m on top of my game.
  • A snappy non-scale victory chart to write down your victories that have nothing to do with the scale, such as running a faster mile, walking a longer distance or faster pace, fitting into a new size shirt or jeans, more energy, the list goes on and on as to how many non-scale victories you could see.

All you have to do is click this link: Be the Best You Weekly Newsletter, fill in your email address and first name and then hit subscribe. The download will be sent directly to your email so you can save and print it whenever you feel like!

Here is a small sneak peek of one of the charts:

weight chart

The first newsletter is set to come out this Sunday and will feature an abundance of behind-the-scenes information, inspiration, stories, and many more. Here are some of the newsletter highlights that you can look forward to receiving each week:

  • New this week: Recap of what we released this past week.
  • Special Inside Look: What we are working on to release soon!
  • Behind the Scenes Project: A look at this week’s project.
  • Tricks & Tips: Seasonal/holiday tips and tricks for healthy living, helpful links or websites/apps, helpful articles, etc.
  • Advice Column! Ask me anything, advice or specific tips you would like to see highlighted in an upcoming newsletter or in my blog.
  • Exclusive Discounts: Occasionally (likely once a month) you will receive exclusive discounts on products, current products as well as new products that I release.
  • And… a monthly freebie! Once a month you will get a free download through our newsletter! This is an exclusive item that only my newsletter subscribers will receive! This and the exclusive discounts are my gifts for you for just signing up for my newsletter!

Enjoy!

~Bonnie~

P.S. Don’t worry because if you don’t like what you see, whether it be the download or the newsletter itself, you can always unsubscribe!

Want more free downloads? Check out this blog post about a FREE Getting Started Weight Loss Workbook!

My Half Marathon Training Plan

A couple days ago I got the okay from a doctor to start running again, slowly and listening to my feet. I’m not fully convinced my feet are completely ready but there’s only one way to find out, right?

Some preliminary information on my half marathon is located at this blog post: Tinker Bell Half Marathon where I posted pictures of some gear I would like to bring with me and/or wear. The half marathon is at the beginning of May. I was inspired by a friend who did this year’s Tinker Bell Half and also seeing a runDisney race on an Extreme Weight Loss episode shortly after starting my weight loss journey. I did an web search right away, where I found the Tinker Bell race and instantly fell in love. However, if it weren’t for my friend (let’s call her A), I would never have dreamt of doing a half marathon! I’m so thankful for her inspiration because it opened up so many avenues and possibilities for me that I never would have dreamed possible for myself.

half marathon training plan

My plan is to start by following Jeff Galloway’s beginner’s training plan from Beginners Plan. It starts with 5 second running and 55 seconds walking for a run/walk program, however I might start at 15 seconds. I will try the 5 seconds first, and then move up faster than is in the plan he has there. The eight week program would only get me to running 15 seconds at once and I think even with my feet issue I can get up to running 60-90 seconds minimum by the end of week eight if I’m careful.

That will take me to the end of December, at which point I hope to start the half marathon training just to make sure I have enough time worked in for my personal needs. It will be the first plan (for runners and walkers) on this page: Half Marathon Training. If I start from wherever I left off with the eight week beginner’s training, working at my own pace and needs, then I can work my way up in the seventeen weeks with that.

The week before the half marathon I know I need to do some kind of tapering to prepare. I’m really not sure how to go about this, and unless I’m missing something I can’t find specific information about it on Jeff Galloway’s website. After some preliminary searches on other running websites, it seems like this is a topic that’s based on personal needs/preference so I’m going to do more research on this and find what works best for me.

I just find some more detailed information here: Top Tips for a Successful Taper from the Chicago Half Marathon website. It says two weeks is good before a half and describes exactly what the tapering means. Now looking back on the Jeff Galloway plan, I will already be doing this tapering method with his training plan. So if I follow the half marathon training plan from Jeff Galloway’s website, and the tapering tips from the Chicago Half Marathon website, then I should be golden! (Anyone with experience with tapering for a long race that would care to chime in, suggestions are welcome!)

Now with my feet still being an ongoing issue, I know I might not be able to run the full half marathon, or even run as much as I would like to. However, as long as I am moving fast enough for the race guidelines, which is 16 minutes or less per mile average, I will be fine. This means if I can average a 15 minute mile or faster with walking breaks then I won’t be pulled out, and I have no doubt that I can at least do that. Some people can walk at that fast of a pace, surely with some walking breaks I can “run” at that pace. I have to keep reminding myself of this part because sometimes I wonder if I will get pulled out for moving too slowly due to my feet or other factors.

So there you have it, my training plan now that I have the okay from a medical professional. I do believe I still need to see a podiatrist to make sure everything is truly okay, but that can wait for now. I know I have supportive shoes that fit my feet well, which are the Brooks Ravenna 5’s and if I really listen to my feet, resting when needed and training on days my feet feel better, I will do well.

I’m excited to finally embark on this training stage after four months of foot pain and being in limbo so to speak. It’s finally happening! I hope it goes well!

~Bonnie~