Fitness and Meal Ideas for May

Hey there! Sadly, my last post was about two months ago! This is all due to Makeup by Ana B’s crazy wedding season! All my time and focus has been taken over by the business, so my little blog has been a bit abandoned. Bare with me though, because I don’t plan to stop blogging! And I appreciate you reading along when I do post :).

20150506_115645 (1)Nothing like some new fitness gear! I recently purchased the New Balance 711 Cross Training Shoe for about $54 and so far I love them!  I wore them to Zumba, and I felt better support and comfort than when I wear my Nike Frees. I also purchased a ton of these long and lean tank tops from Target in different colors, and they’re still having a sale on them if you buy online :). I wear them both for working out or for layering with every day outfits. 
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I’ve been pretty consistent with my eating and work out routine lately and I try to drink a green shake daily. I usually mix two servings of spinach, one serving of fruit, 1 cup of milk and a scoop of protein, or 1 cup of greek yogurt and chia/flax seeds with crushed ice. I try to keep fresh berries, pears and bananas on hand all the time for my shakes.20150420_183901

This is a typical meal my husband likes to cook for us! Grilled chicken seasoned with garlic and low sodium seasonings, grilled veggies, cottage cheese, and avocado. Quick and healthy!

20150422_19144320150425_18304220150429_194415I’m still cooking my way through my Skinnytaste Cookbook! Sometimes I need more than just a quick and plain dinner. Recently, I made these Quinoa Stuffed Peppers, which is a great vegetarian option and so delicious! I also made the Grilled Rosemary Lamb chops and Chicken Rollatini Stuffed with Mozzarella and Zuchinni with a side of quinoa. All of these are great options, but take a little extra work, which I know is hard with littles running around. So make sure to get some music going and get started early! 
20150429_145613I found this to be a satisfying snack or light lunch option: two boiled eggs, 1/2 avocado and toasted Ezekiel bread with a bit of pepper on top. I still try to eat three meals a day with two snacks in between. I am definitely not perfect and I like to indulge in summer treats (insert ice cream here!), but overall consistency with eating healthy foods most of time, cutting back on sugary drinks/snacks and working out 3 times a week definitely pays off!

I am not currently updating MyFitnessPal, but I do update my Instagram, Love_AnaB with more food ideas…and adorable pictures of my kiddos and some outfit posts, so please feel free to like, follow and say hello!  :)

Love,

Ana B

 

Meal Ideas for a Healthy New Year

Happy Friday! I wanted to share some healthy meals that have been heavy on rotation for me since the New Year and some new ones for you to try!

Breakfast:

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Oatmeal with berries and granola. I’ve shared this one before, but it’s definitely one of my staple breakfast options. I actually measure everything out so I know how many calories I’m consuming. It’s usually 1 cup 1-minute oatmeal, 1 cup low fat milk, 1/2 cup berries and a few bits of granola. I also sweeten with Stevia/Splenda or Agave.

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Another new option I’ve been having for breakfast is 2 Vans Simply Delicious Protein Waffles (10 grams of Protein), 1 T light syrup and a handful of berries.

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Protein shakes are always a good option for breakfast, snack or lunch. I use crushed ice, 1 cup low fat milk, 1 scoop of protein (my fav is Optimum Nutrition Extreme Milk Chocolate Whey Protein), 1/2 a banana and cinnamon. It’s cheaper to buy online on Amazon.com but you can find it at GNC or Vitamin Shoppe.

Lunch Options:
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Open face sandwich using cinnamon raisin ezekiel bread (healthy bread option), turkey slices, avocado, tomato and 1 T light mayo.

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Skinnytaste Pear and Brie grilled cheese is a delicious option for the foodie, and the recipe can be found in her new book! I found the recipe here too. More on Skinnytaste here and here.

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Almonds for healthy snacking. Just count to make sure you how many your consuming as the calories can quickly add up.

Dinner Options:

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As you can see, I love to eat well! These are mexican style steak tacos but I limited my portion to two. We also used cooking spray versus tons of oil. I believe that almost any food you love can be made in a healthier version if you make it yourself at home!

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Grilled chicken breast with a slice of melted pepper jack, 1/2 a sweet potato, 1/4 avocado and a salad.

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We try to have some type of chicken or meat marinating at home to curb the chances of getting take out. I throw these three items together (veggies, meat and marinade) in a ziploc for an hour or more if I want to keep it simple.

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And then on some nights, I take my time and make something super yummy like Skinnytaste Lomo Saltado. Soooo good!

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The finished result with crispy homemade fries. Again…yum!

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Skinnytaste Garlic Shrimp on a bed of greens.

I have started sharing more of my work outs and meals/snacks on my personal Instagram page @Love_AnaB so follow me there! I’ve also started using MyFitnessPal again to track my calories under MakeupbyAnaB in case you want to be friends!

Have an awesome weekend!

Love,

Ana B

 

 

Five Ways to Reignite Your Workout Routine

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Hi friends! It’s been awhile since I did a fitness/health post. Like all people, I go through highs and lows in regards to my fitness and weight, and in the last many months I’ve been struggling to be consistent with my workout regimen. As I’ve seen my weight and energy fluctuate, I knew I had to make a change. So in the last few weeks, I’ve kicked things up again and thought I’d share a few tips that re-inspired me to get more physical!

1. Set the mood. It’s really hard to get excited about working out if it’s not part of your current routine. To help you get motivated, set the mood by changing into nice athletic clothes (I love this one by Athleta, but Target brand is also nice and affordable.) Cute tennis shoes are a must as well! I’ve had my Nike Frees for awhile and I love to see those bright colors on my feet :). Make sure to get a killer playlist going. I have a great list on Spotify called Dance Music that gets me pumped!

2. Break your habits. One of my reasons for not working out was because I was so used to going to a gym, but I no longer have a gym membership so I had to adjust to working out at home. I used to also have a lot more time to work out because I wasn’t as busy with work and the kids, so now I limit my workouts to 20-30 minutes, sometimes with kids climbing all over me, but I get it done! If you follow me on Pinterest, I have many workout routines saved that are easy to do at home without equipment.

3. Get in front of a mirror. Maybe it’s just me, but working out in front of a mirror can be motivational. It might be the sight of your muscles working, or the extra jiggle you want to get rid of, or the feeling that you’re not alone (by seeing your reflection), but it works.

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(My “gym” set up at home, it’s pretty simple! Pablo uses this space as well)

4. Set a goal. Sometimes you need something fun to look forward to or a way to treat yourself to help you get motivated. Plan a mini tropical vacation (we just went to Puerto Rico), or maybe there’s a social event like a wedding you want to look great for! Even better, book a boudoir shoot with Susannah. At first, you may be working out just because you want to look good for the occasion, but the health benefits are so worth it. After a few weeks, you’ll actually want to work out because it’s become part of your routine.

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5. Get accountable. If all else fails, you may need a workout buddy. Hit up your friends list and see who is available to meet up for workouts or scheduled runs. If that doesn’t pan out, it may be time to look into a fitness coach. When you pay for coaching, you value it more and you’ll be more likely to follow through! I would recommend FitNez who helped my hubby get into amazing shape (see progress pic). Inez (owner of FitNez) also coincidentally coached many of my brides in prep for their wedding day with great success!

Let me know your thoughts on this list, and feel free to share what motivates you!

Love,

Ana B

P.S. Pic shown at top is my hubby because he clearly hasn’t been missing his workouts like I have! Plus, he’s cute and sexyyyy <3

Little Big Moments Caught on Camera

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Hey guys! So it’s been awhile since I did a family update and shared some pics off my phone. As a blogger, sometimes I can get caught up in having the most perfect picture. But the truth is that the best moments are happening off camera, and if there is a picture about it, it’s usually blurry and off-centered. So here are some awesomely big little moments:  20141008_164342

Skinnytaste came out out with a recipe book and I am loving it so far. Geesh, just looking at the pictures makes me drool! If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you’ll know that I used many of her recipes to help me lose the baby weight (read more here), so I am a fan! Her recipes are healthy without compromising taste. I am a big believer in balance and not deprivation when it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

20140927_191749My little Mateo is now 20 months old and he is as CUTE as ever! He carries his little stuffed animals around with him, he loves to watch Paw Patrol with his brothers, and sucks his thumb when he’s sleepy. We have a very special bond aka he’s got me wrapped around his chubby fingers, hehe. <3

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Diego turned eight over the weekend! His little cousin Mia slept over and he had a laser tag party with all his primos! Remember those cousin sleepovers?! Those were some of my favorite childhood moments and it makes me happy that my little boy gets to experience the same thing now!

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Party time at Shadowland! 20141012_195554

We also had an impromptu get-together at my place afterwards. I’ve been waiting for the moment when I could have my family just hanging out around my table, eating, chatting and laughing for hours while the kids play. It just means a lot to me! 20141010_124635And what’s a good blog post without a shameless selfie?! The bold fall lippies are now in full effect, and here I’m wearing one of my favorites, Rebel Lipstick by MAC. :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Love,

Ana B

 

 

 

March Work Out Routines for Home or Gym

It’s amazing how the littlest things can derail our fitness goals. For the last several weeks, my workouts and clean eating habits have been average at best. I had grown accustomed to my uninterrupted, music in my ears, hour long workouts at the gym (children at the gym childcare).  But then I was dealing with sick children at home, snowy days, etc. and I convinced myself that I couldn’t find the perfect time to workout, and without working out I also felt a lack of desire to cook nutritious meals.

The truth is that if I wait for the the perfect time and perfect situation to live and eat healthily, that time will never come. And when that time does come, chances are I may find scrolling through Instagram for 20 minutes more appealing than squats and lunges. So, instead, I don’t wait for the perfect time, and just MAKE the time to do it! That may mean the laundry has to sit in a pile on my bed for another day…or three :).  I do find that morning workouts are my favorite because it really gives me the motivation I need to eat healthier throughout the day.

I want to share four great workout routines that you can effectively do at home. I found these on Instagram and TribeSports.com. As a working mom, I already feel like I have so many things on my mind, but if I have at least a few workout plans saved on my phone, I don’t have to think about it too much. All I need is music!

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The “100 Workout” is my current favorite and makes my abs and legs nice and sore!  If you need to know how to do some of these workouts, look them up on YouTube or spend some time on TribeSports.com. I am currently aiming to work out 3 times a week. There may be snow on the ground, but spring and summer are just around the corner :).

Love,

Ana B

Body After Baby: Four Months Later

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Time is just flying by and I can’t believe it’s been four months since I had little Mateo! I’m really proud of my postpartum progress, not only physically but mentally as well. I have made some great nutritional changes that are making it easier to lead a healthy lifestyle.

When I reached my goal weight about two months ago, I stopped tracking my calories on MyFitnessPal. Now I just stick to a sensible diet of mostly protein and fiber rich foods. I have lost a few more pounds through weight-training, breast-feeding and eating sensibly. I believe that it’s necessary to track your foods and calories while you’re in weight loss mode. Now that I am just maintaining, I definitely get to enjoy eating out more, and let’s not forget my summer favorite…ice cream cones! However, I cook my own foods and eat clean and healthy 90% of the time. I wrote all the details on how I lost the bulk of the weight here and here. You can also scroll through the “Nutrition” link on my blog to see all my healthy food posts and updates.

My new fitness goal is to build more muscle all around and especially my lower body. Pablo (my hubby who moonlights as my trainer) has got me doing weighted squats and lunges and some serious ab workouts. I am in pain after our workouts, but I’m loving it! It’s exciting to know that I can change and improve my body, even after having three kids.

UPDATE 1/16/2015: I took a break but I am back on MyFitnessPal as MakeupbyAnaB. I am also active on Instagram at @Love_AnaB where I share more inspiration on food, family, and fitness. My beauty and fashion Instagram is @MakeupbyAnaB.  <3 Thanks for stopping by!

Love,

Ana B

 

 

 

 

Healthy Eats: New Meal and Snack Ideas

I’ve been a bit MIA on my blog lately! Motherhood and wedding makeup season has got me completely busy! I do however love receiving your emails and messages for food and nutrition advice. I thought I’d share a few things that are currently on rotation in my home.

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I used to order Pizza at least one night a week. Now I’ve been making my own pizza to control the nutrition content. It is super easy to make at home. I buy Boboli pizza crust (wheat crust is preferable). I then add pizza sauce, chopped spinach or kale, onions, peppers, mushrooms, grilled chicken breast (sliced), and reduced fat cheese. The kids really love it and it’s an easy to way to sneak in their veggies :). photo (59) photo (57)

I read about this vegan Ginger Miso Dressing at Whole Foods and have been using it on my salads. It taste delicious! I used about a tablespoon or two and mix it well into my salad . Above is an example of a recent lunch I made. Grilled salmon with spinach and tomato salad, avocado and ginger dressing.
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For snack, I’ve been eating Light & Fit Greek yogurt with fresh berries. The yogurt has a great taste and is packed with protein. It is also low on calories. These are just a few of my current favorites! I’ll be posting my four month post pregnancy progress report soon. If you have any healthy food or meal ideas, please share them with me, too!

Love,

Ana B

Healthy Eats: Three Delicious Dinner Options

Here are some recent noteworthy recipes I’ve tried that are not only nutritious, but they’re delicious and have helped me reach my weight loss goals without feeling deprived.
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Grilled Shrimp Avocado and Orange Salad – This recipe from Skinnytaste.com is supposed to have fennel but I didn’t have any on hand. I also used a bag of frozen cooked shrimp instead of fresh shrimp to save time and added spinach too. Anything with shrimp and avocado works in my book!

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This Spring Asparagus Risotto tastes just like my Aunt Nina’s famous asparagus rice, only a bit lighter. The Grilled Pollo Sabroso and rice combo will be on heavy rotation in my home all summer long :)  Recipes from Skinnytaste.com.

photo (35)One of my favorite restaurants is P.F. Changs, which I now reserve for special occasions instead of weekly visits :)  These Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps satisfy my need for asian cuisine for much less calories. These are super easy to make, especially if you buy already ground chicken. Recipe by Skinnytaste.com.

For weight loss, remember to use portion control and eat within your calorie budget even when eating healthy foods to stay on track! Would you try any of these?

Love,

Ana B

P.S. More recipes here and here.

Body After Baby: 2 Months Later

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Mateo turned two months old last Sunday. Wowie! Time has really flown by and there’s never a dull moment in my home. When I started my post-pregnancy weight-loss journey, I was motivated to lose the 35 lbs I had gained in my pregnancy, plus another 5 lbs. Two months after giving birth, I was 2 pounds shy of my goal, and today I am only one pound away from that goal. Yippeee!!!

I have shared all my weight-loss secrets along the way, in addition to my favorite healthy and low-calorie recipes. I am really inspired by those of you who have written to me and let me know that you’re also eating healthier and working out :). Makes all this sharing worthwhile!

I want to reiterate the things that really have helped me shed the weight.

* Breastfeeding: Burns an extra 300-500 calories daily! If you can’t breastfeed, then add one hour of high-impact cardio 3-5 times a week to burn those extra calories.

* No eating out: For the first six weeks when I shed the bulk of the weight, I cooked all my meals at home and did not eat out. This is because restaurant food (although yummy!) usually has loads of hidden calories from oil and butter.

* Healthier Choices: I focused my meals around protein and fiber rich foods, in addition to healthy fats. I stayed away from empty calories such as sweets and chips that have no nutritional value.

* Keeping a Diary: For the first six weeks, I tracked all my meals using the app “MyFitnessPal” to make sure I was getting the right amount of calories, protein, fiber, carbs, etc. Once I got a hang of how many calories I was consuming in foods, and how to measure my servings, I didn’t need to keep tracking.

* Motivation: I used a variety of sources to keep me on track including a healthy eating buddy aka my husband. I also followed several healthy eating and fitness driven instragram accounts such as @censkiii, @healthytaste and @forever_fitness.

*Gym-time: At six weeks post-partum, I began a workout regimen that included power walks with the babies around my neighborhood and circuit-training sessions. I follow @censkiii, @forever_fitness and @tribesports on instagram for workout programs.

*Skinnytaste.com: I’ve been making a lot of delicious recipes from this website, which makes eating at home feel like you’re eating at a restaurant, because every recipe is so dang good!

Now that I’m at a weight I’m comfortable with, I do enjoy eating out occasionally and indulge a bit here and there. But I continue to eat healthy 85-90% of the time and work out 3-4 times a week to tone and build muscle. I’m really proud of my progress, but the whole point is…If I can do it after having three kids, you can too!!!!!

UPDATE 1/16/2015: I took a break but I am back on MyFitnessPal as MakeupbyAnaB. I am also active on Instagram at @Love_AnaB where I share more inspiration on food, family, and fitness. My beauty and fashion Instagram is @MakeupbyAnaB.  <3 Thanks for stopping by!

Love,

Ana B

P.S. For more info on my diet, read here and here!

Disclaimer: I am not a health professional. This info is based on my own research and experience, and it is what works for me, but we are all different. When it comes to your diet and fitness postpartum, go at a pace you are comfortable with and works best for you.

My newest obsession: Skinnytaste.com

As you know, I am on a quest to lose all of the baby weight and then some. For breakfast, lunch and snack, I rotate between 2-3 of my favorite quick options (protein shakes, oatmeal and fresh fruit, protein bars, omelettes, and sandwiches to name a few). However, I like to keep things fresh and interesting for dinner while staying within my calorie budget. This is where Skinnytaste.com comes into the picture. My friend Stephanie introduced me to this site filled with delicious and easy recipes that are healthy and low-fat. My favorite part is each recipe has the calories per serving laid out for you, so you can take out the guess work. If you’re using MyFitnessPal, you can just type in the recipe name and all of the data automatically pops up (calories, ingredients, etc.) . The Weight Watchers points are also included for each meal if you use those.

IMG_0758The Skinnytaste Spinach Lasagna Rolls I made last week. Recipe here!

I am really excited to try more of her recipes, including the Spring Asparagus Risotto and Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps, yum! I’ll let you know how they turn out. Eating delicious and losing weight is a win-win in my book :)

NOTE: To see all of my meals, find me on MyFitnessPal, username “MakeupbyAnaB”. Read more about my weight loss journey here and here.

Want more LoveAnaB? Follow me on Instagram at “MakeupbyAnaB”  :)

Love,

Ana B