Tag Archives: health and fitness

6 tips to making meal prep a breeze

6 Tips To Make Meal Prep A Breeze

Meal prep is what will you set you apart from the rest of the world when it comes to making the time to prioritize health and fitness in your life. The 6 tips will be game changers for you if you struggle with time!

Time is always everyone’s big struggle. “If I only had more time.” Sorry about your luck, but everyone from the corporate executive to the mom with four kids to the single twenty something grad student all share the exact same amount of time.

It’s not more time we need…it’s making the most of the time we have and one of the best ways to do that is to schedule it.

Yes, schedule your health and fitness time. Let’s face it, if your health sucks, so does everything else in your life. Maybe not today, probably not tomorrow, but ignore your health long enough and everything else will go with it.

Time for making healthy meals is one of the areas that my clients always find challenging when we start together and with a few simple tips, they become time shifters!

Meal Prep Tips: 6 tips to make meal prep a breeze!

  1. Schedule The Time
    There are two times you need to schedule. In the evenings to prepare lunch, breakfast and snacks for the next day. A block of time on Saturday or Sunday (or whenever you enjoy a day off) to batch prepare food. You won’t need more than 20 minutes an evening or 2 hours on your free day.
  2. Design A Menu
    For me this was HUGE! I lay out in menu form what my families meals will look like for the coming week. (I actually do two weeks at time). This guides me for my shopping needs, my batch prep time and saves a lot of time and ‘last minute mistakes’, “There’s nothing to eat”
    There’s always something to eat when you plan it, make it, prepare it.
  3. Storage
    Don’t overlook this super simple fact of life. Having the proper storage containers makes EVERYTHING about meal prep easier. From portion size, to convenience, having great storage containers that can go from the fridge/freezer to the microwave and be your plate saves time and
    I use the “FitPakcer – Meal Prep Containers” pictured on the left and centre [AF]. There are lots of different options available.6 tips to making meal prep a breeze Fitpacker
  4. Pre-Packaged Healthy Foods Can Help
    Pre-cut vegetables, microwave veggies, rice, pre-cooked chicken, turkey…all of these can come in handy and really cut down on prep time. But, make sure you read the labels. You want just the pure food that is on the label with minimal additives and preservative and NO ADDED SUGAR!
  5. Shop Smart
    Foods and supplies that can be bought in bulk are the way to go, but you can’t always do that with fresh foods and you need to buy a couple of time per week. I shop for bulk items whenever I can so that my quick trips to the grocery store are just that.
    Make a list and stick to it that is designed from your menu. This will save you time and money.
  6. Make It A Family Affair
    I involve my kids and my husband in our meal planning and the prep. The kids love having input into what the menu will be for supper and for their lunches and the extra hands on batch prep days makes for less time in the kitchen and more time for play and fun!

I guarantee when you use these 6 tips to make meal prep a breeze you will save time and money and it won’t take long before it becomes fast and second nature!

Do you use any of these tips already?  Let me know how it works for you and what other tips and tricks you use to stay pin track.

If you haven’t used any of these, try it and let me know how much of a game changer it is for you!


Joni has every excuse available to keep her from making her health and fitness a priority.. In stead, she uses those excuses as reasons to make her health and fitness a priority.

Meet Joni

I am so proud of Joni.

She is the real deal. Down to earth, funny, smart and a self-proclaimed foodie.

Joni has every excuse available to keep her from making her health and fitness a priority.. In stead, she uses those excuses as reasons to make her health and fitness a priority.

Joni has a stressful career (lawyer)

She is a Mom to 3 little ones.

Her husband works shifts.

She also runs her own business (after being a full-time lawyer) focusing on helping others.

She is active with her children and her community.

To say her life is full, is an understatement BUT she makes it work.

She multitasks like a boss.

Not too long ago, Joni made her health a priority. She wanted to feel better.

Eating healthy is something she does for herself and her family.

She carved out what time she had left in her day or she got up a little earlier to fit in a workout.

Joni made it important. She made health and fitness a priority.

This girl could’ve come up with reason after reason why she just couldn’t but decided that it was more important that she gave herself all of the reasons why she should!

Joni looks fantastic!!!!!

  • She didn’t suffer on some crazy juice diet.
  • No ridiculously long workouts.
  • She ate real food that she fed to her family.

Look at that smile!!!!

Wherever you are, just know you can do something.

“if you don’t quite believe in yourself yet, that is ok. You can borrow our belief in you until you get there!”  ~Joni

Wise words Joni!!!

I want this to motivate and inspire you.

Take action, any kind of action.

You Are Worth it!!

“Momalanche” of Hate…for being Healthy

In the news yesterday was a story that got some traction because of a few key words: bullying, fat, moms….

A few women went on the attack after a women who posted a fantastic picture of herself and her three kids with the caption “What’s your excuse”Maria kang

They called her a “bully” saying that she is making women feel inferior and it’s not a “normal” expectation for women.

Funny, bullies trying to turn the table. They are bullying her saying she needs to be sorry that she is committed to being fit, healthy and looking good.  “Oh my shame on her”, really?

So the “Momalanche” of hate unleashed on this girl who likely gets up at an early hour or stays up late to workout and make her meals.  Yeah, that sounds awful.  I’m willing to bet if all the hating, chastising and bullying women had a body like hers after putting in the work they would probably be burning up Instagram with ‘selfies’ of their hard bodies.  But since it’s easier to whine, mope and bellyache, they will just try to bring others down to their pity party, like the crabs in the bucket.

Being fit and looking good is a priority to her…so much so that she is willing to do the work where most people are too lazy. Then those said lazy people try to get nasty and say that she is bullying women to feel that they are not good enough. If its important to you, YOU WILL FIND A WAY, if it’s not, you will FIND AN EXCUSE.

I saw a news clip  about this story that had a panel with a “parenting expert”….what?   She also condemned her saying that it is unrealistic for moms to achieve that kind of body–WHAT???????? Are you kidding? Yes moms are tired…so are dads. Yes parents have a lot of responsibilities and it is draining and taxing on the best of days but to say that being fit and looking good is unrealistic is garbage. This kind of thinking and over the top political correctness is making this world a crazy place.  Oh, and the parenting expert that ripped apart the committed, hard-working mom of three; Aren’t we all that have children parenting experts?

I have been on the receiving end of  hate mail, nasty tweets or comments on Facebook because I am trying to motivate and inspire people to get healthy. I was a fat kid who turned into a fat teen.  I had to work my butt off to lose over 100lbs…I work every dang day to stay in shape.

After my first child, I chose to diet and I chose to sweat each and everyday to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight.  Losing 60 pounds wasn’t a task.  It wasn’t a burden.  It was a goal.  You know what’s tough?  When you balloon up 70 pounds being pregnant with twins and then try to lose that weight when your twins are only sleeping in 45mins at a shot every night …for months.  In my constant sleep deprived state I worked out each and every day because I DID NOT WANT TO BE OUT OF SHAPE AND OVERWEIGHT. I had every excuse in the world but I decided to do the work….and yes it was tough.  But I had a goal.   It was to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight, to be fit and healthy.

Why are we not congratulating people who are successful? 

The world has gone soft.  That’s painfully obvious with the obesity epidemic that’s happening.

Funny…so many people are standing on a pedestal or soap box claiming victory over their bodies and embracing being “oversized” and championing “big is beautiful”.  That’s great for them.  It’s not for me, but if it’s for them, congratulations.  But why is it OK for them to chastise hard work, dedication to health and a focus on fitness but if they are told to lose weight, stop eating and work out…then it’s bullying.  Bit of a double standard no?

I will never apologize for being healthy.

I will never apologize for being healthy.

Sorry, but Childhood Obesity IS the Problem

I read this today and it got me a little worked up.

“Childhood Obesity is Not the Problem”

Click here for the rest of the article

I wanted to reply to the article, but there wasn’t enough room on the website comment section, so I have opted to make my response a post here.

To summarize, here is the simple response:

Childhood Obesity IS THE PROBLEM


I agree the images in the media tout the virtues of being a small size but I think that the commercials for fast food, sugary cereals, the latest candy trump any of the skinny images.

I disagree that there is a demand to be skinny. There are messages and images but everyone has their own filter.  We take the message we choose to take.  So many people are overlooking the “be healthy” message because their minds are being bombarded with the messaging from fast food outlets or food manufacturers.

Sorry, but childhood obesity is not a symptom…it is a result.  It is the culmination of having an unhealthy lifestyle, which includes poor nutritional choices, a sedentary lifestyle and or a combination of those with many other underlying issues.

While skinny may not always be synonymous with healthy, obesity WILL always be synonymous with unhealthy.  We should create a generation of kids that are terrified of being obese.  They should want to be healthy, fit and have a body that looks good.  No, not skinny, but good.

I was a fat child.  I was an obese teenager.  I never desired to be skinny.  I dreamed of not being fat.

Ever since the eating disorders rage of the 90’s, society has been looking for a softer, gentler approach to pointing out the problems associated to over-eating, being lazy, poor choices and the like.  Could it be that all the sugar-coating has helped lead to the epidemic that we are facing today?  Perhaps all the kid glove, touchy feely approaches are allowing many people to think, “It’s ok.  We don’t want to hurt their feelings.”  The bullying that they receive from being over-weight is way worse than the tough approach.  Trust me, I know!!

Do I think that some chubby kids are upset on the way they look and feel, yes. But, when their friends call and say lets meet for pizza or burgers they’re not second guessing that decision.

The psychological effects of me being an overweight child and teen have left a lasting effect on my life as an adult. What I would have given for someone to tell me to put down that donut or not to go to McDonalds and super size everything. It would’ve saved me years of pain. No one said anything. In private, I am sure I was a topic for discussion about what a shame it was that I was so overweight but no one stepped in—not the schools and not my family because they didn’t want to upset me.   Guess what…a little upset done then with love, could have saved some later life pain.

A tough stand with love, compassion and caring will go a long way.

There is more than enough evidence and research to support the facts that childhood obesity increases the likelihood of adult obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and premature death.

Remember the question that was posed at the end of the article, “Do we want healthy kids or just skinny ones?”

By asking the question as a one or the other, you are saying that we could have healthy obese kids and the two just don’t go together.

The answer is, we want healthy kids…healthy mentally, physically and spiritually.  The result of obesity doesn’t fit into any of that.

runDisney Marathon Weekend – Part 2

There has been a lot written about the runDisney 20th Anniversary Marathon Weekend and the experience that people, including myself had in the worlds most ‘magical place’.runDisney-logo

You can read about the runs, the training, the entertainment and everything you would expect to read about a running event.

What hasn’t been talked about much is the Health & Fitness Expo that started on Thursday and ran through the weekend.IMG_2618How important is the Expo?  Well, it’s the location that you need to attend to register your attendance for the running events and pick up your race packets.  So that makes it pretty important by itself, but there is much, much more.

The Expo is held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, which naturally is on the Walt Disney World Resort Property.  It is an amazing place with 30 sports fields, and several buildings that house world-class sporting events and competitions.  It’s home to the Atlanta Braves Spring Training Camp, several summer sports camps for kids and some of the best athletic research minds can be found there.  Oh, and FREE parking!

The Marathon Expo is held in two building within the complex and believe me when I say…they are packed full of everything you could think of for the runner in all of us, with the main emphasis of the Expo held at the Jostens Center.

But, there is more than just great shoes, stylish compression clothes and accessories to make your run “all blinged out”.  You can pick up official runDisney Apparel there as well.  There are some excellent speakers that can change how you train, prepare and approach running whether it’s for a marathon, a lifestyle change or just to burn off some calories.

The ‘Who’s Who’ of running, fitness training and nutrition were on the stage over Thursday, Friday and Saturday of the Expo.  I loved listening to the sessions and thinking how I could apply the learning to my own training as well as how I could help my friends out with new techniques, tips and maybe a little terror!!

I won’t expect you many of you to recognize these names, but in this group are Olympic Champions, running legends, world-renowned coaches, NFL players, world record holders and nutrition specialists.  They were all speaking throughout the Expo giving of their time and knowledge to help each and every person who wanted the information that offered to share.

I have been following many of these people for years and know the reputation they have, so when I received my speakers’ list and saw them all in one place…well I was in awe.

I was able to pull myself away from the speakers stage long enough to do a little shopping and talking with the vendors.  (Did I mention I got a new pair of shoes? Love them!)IMG_2587

I love to listen to music when I run but I get sooooo frustrated with ear buds falling out or headphones bouncing around.  Well, I think I found the solution after talking to the ladies from SnuggBudds.  Ever heard surround sound quality in an ear bud?? I have now and I can tell you for all the running I did over the weekend, not a problem from them at all!  Love them!



I spoke to some experts in the compression wear industry…you know, tights, but for every part of your body.   I was never much for them, but after learning some of the science behind them and the potential benefits, I figured I’d have to give them a try so I bought a pair of leggings.IMG_2648

There were people who could analyze your gait (the way you walk), your spine and your feet.  You could buy headbands, shirts, food, supplements and so much more.  Credit card was smokin’ at the end of the aisles.

I know many people blow off trade shows and expos for conferences and events, but to me there is so much you can take away from them that I don’t miss an opportunity to spend some quality time at them.

Make sure you check them out!

Here’s a few more pics of the experience…

IMG_2666 IMG_2662 IMG_2650 IMG_2649 IMG_2621 IMG_2641 IMG_2642 IMG_2646 IMG_2616 IMG_2602 IMG_2597 IMG_2590 IMG_2574 IMG_2575 IMG_2582 IMG_2585 IMG_2572 IMG_2569 IMG_2567 IMG_2566 IMG_2648 IMG_2556 IMG_2557 IMG_2563



What I learned (observed) in the emerg yesterday

So this germaphobe spent yesterday in the emergency room…makes me shiver just saying that, you should’ve seen me sitting there.

My son was sick and he had gotten worse over night. We went to the walk in clinic in the morning, they sent us directly over to the hospital.

He is on the mend and he was very patient with his germaphobic mother. He kept saying that we could leave because he knew I was so uncomfortable, bless his little heart.

There were a few moments that I wasn’t all consumed with the fact I was surrounded by sick people. In those few moments, there were many glaring observations I was able to make.

The ER was packed-PACKED. The health care system is busting at the seams. Why is it busting at the seams?  A couple of reasons…because people are abusing the system and people don’t give a dang about their health.

To take the load off of the ER-health care system one easy answer is PREVENTION.

In yesterday’s visit from the people who I saw, 80% would not be there if they had taken care of their health.

I will spare you the rant about how some of those people said their illness/issues weren’t obesity related.  Suffice to say that 20 extra pounds of fat around your heart is a big deal.

What is sad and maddening is that those people who are “ill” or are suffering don’t care. They are fine with taking 7 different kinds of medications, seeing the inside of an ER monthly but heaven forbid someone say to them, “Stop eating hot dogs drinking pop and start exercising.”

So many diseases can be prevented that’s the kicker.  

Ignore your health, keep eating the way you are and putting off getting fit is like getting a run in your pantyhose; it will just keeps getting worse.

What else did I see in the ER…

I saw someone come in with footie pajama’s….for the love…I can’t even begin to express what shock I was in. Yes, It was an adult!!! Being out in public in your PJs?  Come on. Listen, before you say anything, I know when you are sick and you don’t feel like getting dressed but footie pj’s…the dirt and germs….no shoes, just footie pj’s that they will likely walk around the house in when they get home….tracking in all of those sick germs–GAH!

Another eyebrow raise came when I saw half a dozen hospital staff working in the offices walking around in business attire and wearing shoes that they could not walk in. Trust me, I get wearing cute shoes…but when you walk in shoes that are too high or don’t fit…you just look crazy.  You look like you are walking an invisible tight rope. You lose that professional image in every teetering step!

It is an unspoken law that when you are sick, cough in your elbow or use a kleenex or even in your hand. I am not sure what turnip truck you fell off that you think it is ok to cough with your mouth wide open and not cover your germ spewing hole!!!  GAH!!!!

Being unhealthy is a choice….harsh, perhaps. If you live a healthy life, eat real food and exercise you have better chances of not being ill. If you are overweight, continue to abuse your body by neglecting it and eating food you know darn well isn’t food then you get what you get and you don’t pitch a fit.

Prevention…so many obesity related diseases are preventable. If you think that the 20-30 pounds you have been carrying around for the last year is no big deal, think again.

You’re in the driver’s seat…if you are unfit and unhealthy…that’s all you. You and your excuses will get you another 20-30lbs

Yes, I’m fired up because I had to sit in the ER all day with a sick little one, when more than half of the people there should not have been there in the first place!

Happy with where you are?  You probably don’t want it bad enough.  Content with carrying extra weight?  Think about the people who love you.  The ones who don’t want to have to visit you in the hospital or who don’t want to dole out your medication.

Take care of yourself–be in control of your future.

No wonder people are confused about health and fitness

Over the last week I have read several articles about and a couple of studies about health and fitness. Specifically, diet and exercise were my primary focus.

The differences in the pieces that I have been reading are like night and day and it got me to thinking that because of the garbage that is out there, no wonder so many people are confused about the best ways to reach their health and fitness goals.

Hmmm… are you confused?


According to what I read, the best way to lose weight is through the foods you eat.  If you eat well-balanced meals, if you drink a shake, if you take these supplements you can lose weight.  You don’t need to even think about exercise while the pounds and inches just magically disappear.  Really?

Pills, potions and lotions


According to several top researchers, all you need to do to lose weight is exercise.  Lift heavy weight, lift light weight lots of times.  Run for miles on a treadmill, take a yoga class, spin on a brass pole, air box.  These will guarantee rapid weight loss…so some people say.  Who cares about what you eat! In fact, eat lots of food and don’t worry about it being good and healthy food, just eat! Really?

Donut think so


  1. No amount of exercise will make up for a crappy diet.  Food is fuel and if you are going to exercise, you have to re-fuel your body with the stuff.  You don’t put diesel fuel in a gas engine right? So why put crap in your body?
  2. Exercise builds and maintains lean muscle mass.  The muscles are where you will primarily burn energy (aka fat) when you are losing weight.  The more lean muscle mass, the more fat you can burn, so it stands to reason that by exercising you can burn more fat, faster.
  3. Your body is a genius at figuring out how to get by with what it has going for it.  Not enough food? It slows down metabolism and stores every bit of extra energy (fat) that it can to get by.
  4. Your body will adjust itself to your caloric intake so that it works with what is available and pretty soon, you’ll be putting on weight again (unless you starve yourself).
  5. Proper diet + Sensible Exercise = Health & Fitness

    This PLUS



That’s it! There you go.  Confusion gone.  A proper diet is incredibly important for proper health and exercise is necessary to use that nutrition to make a better, stronger healthier you.

They go together, so forget the garbage about one or the other…the answer is both!

Oh and by the way… wonder what the reason “experts” have such different views?  That’s easy.

  • Food manufacturers and food product suppliers depend on you eating crappy food.  They have a vested interest in you eating more.
  • Gym facilities depend on you spending your money there but never walking through the doors.  They bank on that and lock you into contracts then if you do go there, introduce you to someone who texts their friends during your time and counts to 10 while looking at everyone but you!
  • Who do you think is funding the research that is skewed?