Happy Monday morning!  Another weekend down and not many left in the summer – yikes.  Why does summer always fly by?!  I want the next ten months to creep by so I can cherish the time I have left in NC.  Even though I have no idea where Chris and I will end up after he graduates!

My initial plan for breakfast this morning was a yogurt & fruit medley with a sprinkle of granola.  But then I remembered that I am unable to come home for lunch today and would need to pack something to bring with me to work.  I also remembered that I don’t really have any packable lunch options!  So I decided to save the yogurt, fruit medley and granola for lunch.

What did that leave me with for  breakfast? Cereal, duh.

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Kashi Autumn Wheat with blueberries, strawberries, and flax.

I accidentally added the flax after I put the fruit on, which makes it less pretty.

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But now those of you who have never tried flax know what it looks like!

And here’s a peek of everything I brought for lunch.

Granola.

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Yogurt.

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Cherries.

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AB & J

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And just to give you an idea of how small the whole wheat roles that I’ve been eating are….

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They fit in the palm of my hand.

And just in case I am super hungry all day, I brought also brought  a Larabar, which I have yet to try but have seen all over the blog world, and an Orville Redenbacher 100 calorie Smart Pop pack.

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All organized and ready to go!

Wait a tick….there’s something missing.  The fruit medley!  Darn!  I wanted to include a medley of grapes, plum, apple, blueberries, and strawberries to mix in with the yogurt.

This is why I am happy to go home for lunch everyday.  There’s no way I could forget anything!

On another note, how many of you have wondered how you can alter your lifestyle to boost your metabolism?

shape

I wanted to share an article I read this morning from Shape.com that gives ten pointers on how to increase your metabolism.

  1. Maximize your muscle. Muscles are fat-burning furnaces, so be sure to do enough resistance training to build and maintain them and follow your workouts with a snack or meal balanced in protein, carbohydrates and fat.
 
* This is why I incorporate strength training into my workouts 2-3 times a week and try to focus on including carbs, fat & protein at each meal.
 
2. Don’t forget the cardio. It improves definition and blasts the fat that covers your muscles. Combining regular aerobic exercisewith strength training will give you the slimming effect you’ve been going for. After all, toning without cardio is like building a house on a weak foundation.
 
* Cardio gets your heart rate up and makes your heart strong.  I try to do cardio 4-5 times a week.
 
3. Be sure to stretch. It can help your muscles work better so you can more effectively isolate your problem areas.
 
* Aside from my IT band which I stretch freqently, I save my stretching for after my workout.  Studies have found that streching before exercise does not benefit your workout.
 
4. Focus on your assets. Playing up your favorite body parts can boost your confidence and draw attention away from spots you want to minimize. Sculpting your shoulders, arms, chest, and back, for example, can help balance heavier hips so you look more proportionate. Plus, you’ll be firmer all over.
 
* I can’t say I do this – I don’t really focus on any one body part. 
 
 5. Don’t starve yourself.Undereating causes your metabolic rate to drop and your body to hold onto fat. Shape recommends that the average, active woman consume at least 1,800 calories daily.
 
*I mention this in my Myth Busters page and couldn’t agree more.
 
6. Go graze-y. Eat 6 small meals a day to avoid blood-sugar spikes and minimize urges to binge.
 
* I wouldn’t classify my eating style as 6 small meals a day, I’m more like 3 meals a day with 1 0r 2 snacks, because that works better for me.  I try to eat every 2-4 hours.
 
7. Get real. Fuel your body with wholesome, nutritious foods, and limit your intake of refined carbs (anything sugary or white-flour based).
* Yes, yes, yes!  I do this :)
 
8. Drink More Water. Staying hydrated will help you feel full longer and keep you healthy.
 
* Even though I don’t show pictures, I bring a water bottle with me to work everyday (20oz?) and fill it up 3-4 four times.  I am guilty of not drinking enough water at night though.
 
9. Sleep tight.Get 7-8 hours of Z’s a night.
 
* I can’t really function on less than 7 hours of sleep, and sometimes I even need 9! 
 
10. Control what you can. Keep stress levels in check by managing your time, focusing on the present and not over-committing.
 
 * I feel that I am a pretty calm, stress free person.  I don’t let little things bother me and do my best to  focus on the positive.
 
Hopefully you found the above tips helpful! Have a great day!
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