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Reach your Fitness Goals – Erica Holiday

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Reach your Fitness Goals

Reaching Your Fitness Goals

Erica first entered her first competition in 2010 and did well, so she found a coach and continued down the bodybuilding path. After entering her first WBFF competition, she knew she’d found the federation for her and decided to go after her Pro Card, which she received in August 2012 in both Fitness model and Bikini divisions!
Her goals for the future include training clients to help them reach their full potential, competing in her debut Pro Show in 2013 and a few other fitness related projects. Of course, she would also love to grace the cover of a major fitness magazine one day, as every bodybuilder dreams!

The Pre-Transformation Checklist: “Reach your Fitness Goals”

It’s a New Year with new dreams to chase and fitness goals to reach!

For many the excitement and resolution to follow through on these fitness goals begins to wane by mid-February. You can see that in the gym alone. The first week of January you are lucky to find a parking spot, but by the second week of February, it’s “Hey! Where’d everyone go?” No one aims to fail…but life gets busy, obstacles cross our paths, and soon we lose sight of why we started, become de-motivated and just give up. That’s why I put together a list of questions to help you really think through these goals. This isn’t some revolutionary process…just a simple investment of genuine thought: written down, reviewed often, with follow through.

I believe with some thought and planning you’ll stay motivated and your fitness goals will be attainable. So, go grab a pencil and notepad now because you’ll need to invest a little mind work. This is mainly meant to be a guide – because only you can answer the questions and apply them – but I will offer tips and advice along the way to help you generate your own ideas and create steps to success to reach your fitness goals!

The first question on the Pre-Transformation Checklist is “WHY?”

WHY do you want to transform yourself and have fitness goals? Is there a certain toned look or harder body ideal you are after? Is there an outfit you want to fit into finally? Do you have a special event this year – like a reunion or anniversary that is motivating you to do a body makeover? Or perhaps entering a bodybuilding competition is on your bucket list? Maybe it’s something even bigger like health issues, or desiring to set a good example for family? Think about your reasons then write them down. Identifying “Why” is important because it is the foundation of your change. Think of it as your body’s Mission Statement. The best answers to “Why” are going to be sustainable of course, unlike a one-time event, but don’t worry about that yet. As you progress in your transformation to your fitness goals, you’ll probably find you don’t want to return to a lesser state of health and fitness and your “Why” may change.

The “Why” leads directly into Question number two, which is:
“WHO?” WHO are you doing this for?

In my opinion there should only be ONE answer to this question. Whatever your reasons for embarking on a journey to a greater level of strength and well-being, you must resolve to do this primarily for You. (You are the “Who”, let others be the “What”, if you choose….more on this later) And, hopefully, the outcome will be that family and friends will watch and learn from you and decide to do the same for themselves and reach their own fitness goals. Striving for fitness-related goals is no easy commitment! It’ll take a lot of your time, your energy, and your dedication – do this for You. Your resolve and success in transforming will positively impact everyone in your life as a result. It’s a win-win! This is a good tip for us moms, as well. Sometimes we need to find something that is ours’ alone and work at it. Kids learn Mom is not just a mom, but an individual – a strong, healthy, and confident woman. Kids will learn much from a healthy lifestyle that leads to a healthy self-image.

Once you have your foundation of Why and Who.

Consider Question number three: WHAT motivates you?

What flames the passion inside you? Is it reading quotes or browsing fitness magazines or listening to music? Is it planning a reward? Maybe you are motivated by supportive friends and family – or just the looks on their faces as you slowly and progressively transform your body? Here are a few things that personally keep me going: For starters, I love motivational quotes – especially when a photograph or stimulating image is attached to it, to helpme reach my fitness goals. In fact, my planner and Facebook pages are full of these. Often the quotes I post are words I needed to hear or images I needed to see that day…or because I know someone else who does.

Sometimes I find an uplifting message that helped me through a particularly hard time and I post it hoping to encourage others who may be struggling. It truly inspires and motivates me to inspire and motivate others! People are my main “What”. Another thing that pushes me towards my goals is collecting pictures of fitness models who I admire. It may be that I’m working on obtaining “her” abs or “her” delts this season. Seeing the images of those strong women helps me to focus and visualize what my efforts will achieve! But a word of caution: No Comparing! We may never have those exact glutes, for example, but we can work hard and love our progress from season to season. Comparison is an ugly game to play in your head and I believe what is inside eventually radiates outward. It can also lead to low self-esteem and is a huge DE-motivator! So, be positive and focus on your personal best! One quick thing to add: if rewards are your motivation, try to stay on track by choosing healthy ones. Don’t feed a bad habit by rewarding yourself with a big cake, for example. Instead, buy yourself a new workout outfit or training shoes – it’ll motivate you right back into the gym and that’s a step in the right direction!

The number four question is: WHAT hinders you?

Do you have friends or family who make negative comments? Do you tend to cheat on your nutrition? Are you having difficulty finding a place to work out? Do you tend to give up when you don’t see results fast enough? Do the same obstacles always stop you in your tracks from year to year? Identify these now. I think I most often hear from people that their significant other or family just doesn’t “get” why they want to invest the necessary time and energy into reaching a new fitness level. They’re surrounded by constant negativity in their efforts to change and it truly makes progress difficult. Trust me, I understand this. It took a lot of time for those closest to me to make sense of what I was doing.

My advice? You can’t get rid of family and shouldn’t ditch your true friends, but do widen your circle to incorporate like-minded, upbeat people who will inspire, encourage, and support you. You’ll find that you’re able to ignore the negative folks’ commentary if you invite more positive friends into your life. If your main hindrance is nutrition-related, don’t keep junk food in your house…Period. However, do realize that you will mess up on your diet one day, because we are human. Stop and pick right back up where you left off next meal! Don’t wait until “tomorrow” or “Monday” and put yourself back further. Just keep going forward from here on and each time you slip. Social events can be a nutrition nightmare. Learn to choose wisely off of a menu or bring your own food, if acceptable for the occasion.

Try to plan get-togethers that revolve around activity rather than eating whenever possible. If your place to work out is an issue – whether you don’t know where to start, don’t believe you can afford a gym or just need a change of pace – there is something out there for everyone these days! Gyms, with fees as low as $10/month, are popping up all over the place. Or switch to a studio that offers a variety of classes to keep you interested. Or try at-home, minimal equipment or body-weight-only workouts, depending on your final objectives. There are some great free YouTube.com videos that show you how to perform any exercise you can think of – at home or in a gym. I’ve used some of these and they can be very helpful when I’m in a rut. And, of course, you can always find books and magazine articles to get you started as well. Working out at home may also solve a time issue you are having. And let me remind you that one hour spent working out is only 4% of your entire day! With lasting, lifelong benefits! Don’t let time be an excuse.

Lastly, I just have to address the “not-seeing-results-fast-enough” obstacle with a bit of motivation from a quote I love, because we have all been there: “Some quit due to slow progress, never grasping the fact that slow progress….is progress.” –Rosley. ‘Nuff said!

The last Question to answer as part of your checklist is the “How” and it’s the most important of them.

HOW are you going to make these goals a reality?

This part is also the hardest. We can dream all day long of doing, but the part that connects the vision to the end result is the most important – it’s the PLAN. It comes even before one step of exertion. You’ve labeled your goals and obstacles, now you need a roadmap – the only way goals can be achieved. To get this you need to answer “How”? I’m a big fan of the old-fashioned “write it down” because it organizes your thoughts and it’s a simple visual reminder. Be sure to BE SPECIFIC and make your “How’s” tangible. Plot it out and include the “What’s” – how will you use your motivators and handle your obstacles? It might look something like this:

Plan of Action:

  1. I will MAKE the necessary time to reach my fitness goals. I will commit to approximately 45minutes to 1 hour, 3 to 4 days/week in the gym which will include weights and cardio. (As my fitness level increases, I will adjust the amount of time)
  2. I will use a holistic approach to meet my goals, to transform my mind and body together. I will start by signing up for a Saturday morning Yoga class to refresh and increase my flexibility.
  3. I will expand my circle of friends and mentors to assist in reaching my goals. I commit to meeting at least two new friends this month who share my positivity and love of fitness.
  4.  I will follow my dietary plan that will get me to that greater level of fitness. To aid in my compliance, I will throw out all the foods in my house not serving my nutritional goals.

Next, write down at least one step that you will take TODAY. Just one step in the right direction will lead to more. It can be simple.

For example:

  1. Today, I will make a collection of music on my ipod that motivates me during my workouts.
  2. or Today, I will start a folder of inspirational quotes, pictures, articles, recipes, and workouts.

Finally, don’t forget your long-term fitness goals and plans. For example, future implementations might include:

  1. To help me reach my fitness goals efficiently and safely I will hire a personal trainer and/or nutritionist by ______.
  2. I will register for a Bodybuilding/Fitness competition by _____, to add a level of accountability to my plan. (of course, I highly recommend www.wbffshows.com)

If you’ve considered all of these questions completely and written down your answers, along with a plan and fitness goals, then your checklist is complete!

One final thought: one of the best investments you can make when it comes to your health and fitness goals is to hire a personal trainer and nutritionist. They can offer a higher level of accountability and will truly push you and guide you safely to that next level of your fitness goals. I’ve been working with my trainer/nutritionist out of Oregon for three years and have made great strides in my physique that would have been impossible on my own. A dedicated athlete and an experienced trainer can make a killer team! If you decide a P.T. is right for you, share your checklist with them and collaborate on a plan that makes sense for what you want to accomplish in your fitness goals.

Now, that you’ve gone through the Pre-Transformation Checklist, you’re ready to begin a journey you’ll never regret to your fitness goals. So get out there and DO it! You know your Why, Who, Whats, and How….so go to Work and Win! Being healthy and fit equals strength equals beauty equals empowerment.

Good luck and remember:
“Dream, Believe, Exert, and Achieve!”

Erica Holiday WBFF Pro

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Smart Goals – Lisa Humble

Lisa has been competing in the bikini division with the NPC organization since July 2011 and fell in love with it. Competing keeps her body in the best condition it can possibly be in and keeps her laser focused on eating 6 healthy meals a day. She has 2 children that are competitive athletes, so it is important to teach them how to take care of their body for maximum performance. She works a full time job as a pharmaceutical representative. Excuses are not apart of her lifestyle. She is striving to be a professional athlete in the IFBB league and to be an internationally published fitness model.

How do you know where you will end up if you don’t know how to get there?

July 2006 I decided I wanted to compete in my first figure competition. I went to see someone that was recommended to me to coach me and train me through this whole new journey. Much to my surprise this person told me I would never be able to compete in the fitness industry I just didn’t have the shape and muscle. I drove home very disappointed and sat down in my big oversized chair and read my Oxygen magazine. I thought to myself “I know I can do this, I need a plan and someone who believes in me.” Then I began writing down exactly what I wanted to accomplish and I put a time on each goal. Here is what I set July 2006:

  • Compete in NPC org Figure division place in top 5 by July 2008 – date accomplished July 2007 4th place
  •  Secure a position in the pharmaceutical industry by January 2011 – date accomplished January 4th 2010
  • Have 1 print ad published in a magazine during my fitness career – date accomplished December 2012 – 4000 GNC stores, Shape December 2012, Oxygen January 2013, Muscle and Fitness Hers January 2013

I know you are thinking, “So what does this have to do with where you will end up?” If you don’t have a plan you will drive yourself mad starting over and over. My point is when you write your goals down and devise a plan you are far more likely to succeed.
Goal setting is not the glamorous side of a healthy fit life. It’s kind of like one of those things that you really just don’t take seriously. When you decide you are ready to make a change for the better you are all ready to hit the pavement and “get ur done”, as we say in the south. So many people have called or messaged me and said “This year I am going to get in shape!!! ” I immediately say “What was your goal or resolution last year?” So many times it is the same resolution year after year. Whether it is get out of debt,  get in shape, get a new job, or whatever you are wanting to improve on, you have to have a plan and discipline yourself enough to stick to it!
So we all agree that it is important to write your goals down but …….exactly how are you going to accomplish the goals you have set?  That is where SMART goals need to be executed.

Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time focused.

A lot of you may have heard of SMART goals before especially if you have a corporate career like myself.  A SMART goal has a greater chance of being accomplished than a general one. Typically a SMART goal includes who, what, when, where, and how.   ie. My general goal – I am going to get in the best shape of my life.  My SMART goal – I am getting in the best shape of my life by joining a gym working out 4 days a week and marking off on a calendar every time I workout each week.  See the difference?  You will feel on top of the world when you look back at all the progress you have made.  It’s the beginning of a new year and no better time  to decide what great things you want to accomplish in 2013!

As always let me know your thoughts!
Happy New Year!!!!!
xoxo Lisa

Lisa McLean Humble

www.facebook.com/LisaHumbleFit
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Get into Great Shape

Emily Reynolds is a World Bodybuilding & Fitness Federation (WBFF) pro Diva Bikini athlete, an International Natural Bodybuilding Association (INBA) pro bikini athlete, O’Neill 365 Icon, figure champion, competition coach, personal trainer, nutritional and wellness consultant, fitness personality and model.

You Don’t Need a Big Budget to Get into Great Shape

Turn your living room, bedroom or yard into your own private workout studio. Clear some space and take your commercial break fitness!

Go through each one for a full body workout that doesn’t even require any equipment! You can even do this workout in a hotel room when you are on vacation or traveling.

More Fitness Ideas

• Go local: Check out your homeowners association or apartment complex to see if they have a gym. These are free to you so there are no excuses.

• Try the library: Go to your local library and check out some exercise DVDs to change up your routine. Pop one in your DVD player or computer and get to it! Ask friends what workout videos they have at home and see if you can borrow some to get going.

• Get online: YouTube.com has MILLIONS of 100 percent free workout videos. Everything from your average person demonstrating a few of their favorite moves, to professional fitness trainers walking you through a full body burn.

• Play outdoors: Run, walk, hike, bike, climb some stairs. You’d be surprised at how many things you can find outside to work yourself out underneath a sunny sky or starry night.

Last but not least, if you have a gym membership, use it! If you don’t use it because you’re not sure what to do once you get there, don’t feel alone.
I hear all the time how overwhelmed people are at the gym, not knowing if a machine is for arms or legs. It can be intimidating.

Even if you are not new to your gym, I encourage you to go in and ask for a formal tour of the facility. You can use this time to ask the friendly and willing gym staff any questions you have such as:

• Where are the shoulder machines?

• What do you recommend I use to workout my glutes?

Also inquire about the classes they have and ask for the weekly schedule so that you can post it on your fridge. Generally, these classes are free with your membership, so take advantage. See if they have weekend boot camps, too. These can be a great way to kick start a healthy weekend and keep you on track!

Whatever you do, just get moving! The first step is always the hardest. But your body will thank you for it!

Get more healthy lifestyle tips in my “Eat Clean to Stay Lean” ebook!

160x600_Emily

Remember…Be your best you
Emily Reynolds

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commercial break fitness

Emily Reynolds is a World Bodybuilding & Fitness Federation (WBFF) pro Diva Bikini athlete, an International Natural Bodybuilding Association (INBA) pro bikini athlete, O’Neill 365 Icon, figure champion, competition coach, personal trainer, nutritional and wellness consultant, fitness personality and model.

You Don’t Need a Big Budget to Get into Great Shape!!!

Turn your living room, bedroom or yard into your own private workout studio. Clear some space and take your commercial break fitness!

Click the FB image below to watch the video

Watch me on YouTube commercial break fitness

Go through each one for a full body workout that doesn’t even require any equipment! You can even do this workout in a hotel room when you are on vacation or traveling.
More Fitness Ideas

• Go local: Check out your homeowners association or apartment complex to see if they have a gym. These are free to you so there are no excuses.

• Try the library: Go to your local library and check out some exercise DVDs to change up your routine. Pop one in your DVD player or computer and get to it! Ask friends what workout videos they have at home and see if you can borrow some to get going.

• Get online: YouTube.com has MILLIONS of 100 percent free workout videos. Everything from your average person demonstrating a few of their favorite moves, to professional fitness trainers walking you through a full body burn.

• Play outdoors: Run, walk, hike, bike, climb some stairs. You’d be surprised at how many things you can find outside to work yourself out underneath a sunny sky or starry night.

Last but not least, if you have a gym membership, use it! If you don’t use it because you’re not sure what to do once you get there, don’t feel alone.

I hear all the time how overwhelmed people are at the gym, not knowing if a machine is for arms or legs.  It can be intimidating.

Even if you are not new to your gym, I encourage you to go in and ask for a formal tour of the facility. You can use this time to ask the friendly and willing gym staff any questions you have such as:

• Where are the shoulder machines?

• What do you recommend I use to workout my glutes?

Also inquire about the classes they have and ask for the weekly schedule so that you can post it on your fridge. Generally, these classes are free with your membership, so take advantage.  See if they have weekend boot camps, too. These can be a great way to kick start a healthy weekend and keep you on track!

Whatever you do, just get moving! The first step is always the hardest. But your body will thank you for it!

Remember…Be your best you
Emily Reynolds

Follow me on
Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

Grocery Shopping for Clean Eating

Lisa has been competing in the bikini division with the NPC organization since July 2011 and fell in love with it. Competing keeps her body in the best condition it can possibly be in and keeps her laser focused on eating 6 healthy meals a day. She has 2 children that are competitive athletes, so it is important to teach them how to take care of their body for maximum performance. She works a full time job as a pharmaceutical representative. Excuses are not apart of her lifestyle. She is striving to be a professional athlete in the IFBB league and to be an internationally published fitness model.

So many times I have been asked the question “Lisa what do I buy at the grocery store? You say to eat 4-6 clean meals a day to boost metabolism and lose weight but what exactly is an example of a clean meal?” So I thought I would share my staple grocery list of things that I buy every single time I am at the grocery store and recommend some great cookbooks that support clean eating that I keep on hand for fresh ideas for my family as well as myself. Just so you know I am a mother of 2 and a full time pharmaceutical representative so I have to plan ahead and keep fresh veggies and fruit on hand to pack in my cooler. I typically go to the grocery store once a week for my staples and end up going again later in the week. Both of my children are athletes and I feed them like they are training for the Olympics next week so that requires multiple trips to the grocery store sometimes :)

Here is my staple grocery list: Apples, Strawberries, Bananas, Blueberries, Broccoli, Zuchinni, Radishes, Cucumbers, Lemons, Limes, Egg whites, Vegetatrian fed eggs, Sweet Potatoes, Brown Rice, Almonds, Pistachios, Cashews, Cranberries, Oatmeal, Rice cakes, Natural Peanut Butter, Stevia, Tuna, Salmon, Scallops, Chia Seeds, Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk, Sesame Oil, Coconut Oil, Black beans, Quinoa, Spinach, Romaine

Now this is not my total grocery list keep in mind I have a family. If I lived alone this would be my entire list. These are the items that I keep on hand so that I do not run out of healthy options and have to eat fast food. So now you are probably wondering what I do with some of these items. Lets start with fruit.

Apples, Strawberries, Blueberries, and Bananas I eat in the morning for breakfast with egg whites and almond milk. They are also packed in my childrens’ lunches for the fiber and carbohydrate content. I typically wash and cut up a big bowl of strawberries and set them on the counter and when my kids come in from practice they see the fruit first and will eat it!

Broccoli, Zuchinni, Radishes, Cucumbers I like to eat raw, uncooked. So I cut up all my vegetables and mix them together in a big bowl. Add a dash of pepper and drizzle with sesame oil. I put this in 6 small containers and refrigerate. These are packed in my cooler for the week for me to eat while I am on the road. Spinach and Romaine I use for salads at dinner. I sprinkle Chia seeds on salad for my family for the nutritional benefits. Chia seeds are a powerhouse nutritional source, loaded with fiber and protein. Chia seeds can be used many many ways be creative.

Brown rice, sweet potatoes, black beans, quinoa are my carbohydrate sources that I pack in individual containers as well for my cooler. These are also the staples I cook for dinner with grilled salmon, seared scallops, and grilled tuna. My daughters favorite meal is spinach salad with seared scallops. Oatmeal I eat in the morning for breakfast as well and mix in 1 teaspoon coconut oil for some good healthy fat!

Snacks can be the detrimental part of anyone’s diet. So I make my own trail mix in large plastic bags for the entire family. Almonds, Cashews, Dried banana chips, Pistachios, and Cranberries is a great mixture to start with. I have also added in dried mango and papaya but make sure you only eat 1/4 cup of trail mix a day if you are trying to lose weight. Another snack for me is rice cakes with peanut butter.

I drink 1 gallon of water a day and sometimes I like to have some flavor. I juice lemon and lime and the pulp and add stevia (plant based sweetener) to give myself a change to get my water in.

Well I hope this helps you in your grocery shopping! Please feel free to reach out to me with comments and success stories!!!

Lisa McLean Humble

www.facebook.com/LisaHumbleFit
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Diet and Nutrition Tips for a more healthy lifestyle!

Carine Duval is a fitness Pro who works as a dental hygienist who started competing in fitness two years ago at the age of 42. She won her pro card eight months later.

How many times have you told yourself: “I will start exercising every day,” “I will commit to eating healthier,” “I will lose a lot of weight.” People make promises to themselves every week! This is such a common thing to do, but even more common is the alarming rate at which these promises are broken.
To me, this is not surprising. I explain it with a simple analogy. Making a generic statement like “I will start exercising” is like saying “I will be a better person.” What’s wrong about that you ask? Nothing, if you believe that one can just become a better person by saying it aloud. If you truly aim to bring about a change, the key is to define the ‘what’ and the ‘how.’
How will you lose more weight? What exercise routine will you follow? What eating habits will you change? Don’t let these questions overwhelm you. It’s actually quite simple. When it comes to fitness, there are a few rules to follow as sacrosanct. Especially if you are trying to achieve a goal like weight loss or better health.
If you’re clueless about where to begin, here is a list of my ten best tips to get you started!
1. Avoid processed foods, refined sugars and white foods such as white pasta, white rice and white bread. These foods get absorbed and digested quickly, causing a high spike in energy levels, however followed by a crash which could lead to increased hunger pangs in between meals. Healthier alternatives such as whole grains and whole wheat deliver the necessary vitamins, minerals, fiber and a host of phytonutrients.
2. Drink a lot of water. And I cannot emphasize this enough. Drinking atleast 8-10 8oz of water in a day will not only keep you hydrated – good for your skin and vital organs – but will also give you a sense of feeling full.
3. Exercise at least 4 times a week. Try to make it fun, choose something you enjoy so that you follow it rigorously. Join a biking or running group. When you make a commitment to others, you are more likely to keep it. Incorporate cardiovascular exercise with weight training. Cardio burns fat and is good for your heart. Weight lifting increases muscle mass which burns fat as well.
4. Eat 5-6 small meals a day. This will keep your metabolism high, and you’ll burn more calories. When you eat three big meals a day, your body is unable to metabolize too many calories at one time, thus the food gets stored as fat. With 4-5 smaller meals, you’re only eating the amount your body needs at one time. Combine 3 0z proteins, ½ cup veggies, and ¼ starches into each meal. Also include ¼-1 cup of fruits a day.
5. Don’t go to the grocery store hungry. This may sound funny but when you go to a grocery story on an empty stomach, you’ll end up buying all kinds of high-fat food that you will later regret. Make sure you have eaten well and importantly, make a list of the foods you need, and stick to buying only what is on the list.
6. Isagenix. Choose a weight loss program and regimen that is safe and healthy. Trust and recommend Isagenix to maintain my lean physiques and build muscle. Their products are all natural and organic. They offer products such as a 30 and 9 day cleanse, gluten free protein shakes, healthy low calories snacks, and other supplements that comprise of ingredients from the earth.
7. Prepare your meals ahead of time. When hunger strikes, it’s common to want to eat everything that is in sight. If you have a proper meal already prepared, you could make a much healthier choice as opposed to reaching out for the bag of potato chips.
8. Maintain a daily log and take weekly photos. Record all that you eat in a day, including small meals. If you have to, make yourself answerable to somebody. This will make it easier for you to keep focus and stay on track. From the time you begin your health/fitness routine, take full-length photographs of yourself every few days. This will help you to visualize the changes your body is undergoing
9. Don’t sign off foods that you like, for life. If you hold back too much, over a period of time you’ll tire out your self-restraint and end up eating a lot more. Allow yourself the occasional treat and don’t feel too guilty about it.
10. Don’t stock up on food that is tempting and unhealthy. When you have processed food, colas, high-calorie desserts, foods that are high in saturated fat and sugars, etc., at home, it’s easy to get tempted and cave in. Don’t keep such options too handy.

Carine Duval

Click Here to find out what Carine uses for supplements