Chocolate Protein Brownies

Brownies….Everyone loves them~ Maybe a little too much sometimes… 😉 First of all, if you have a brownie, a made from the box Betty Crocker brownie, don’t hate on yourself. It’s one brownie, on one day. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not going to “derail” you from living a healthy lifestyle. In fact, it might even help keep you on track. When we deprive ourselves of something (like one brownie) over and over and over, it leads to behaviors such as binging, irritation and displaying anger towards others,  and can even, down the road, lead to symptoms associated with eating disorders. But I digress….

So, if you’re the kind of person that needs a brownie or chocolate every day, here’s a great alternative to the traditional brownie. They are packed with protein, don’t have chocolate fudge/milk chocolate, margarine/butter, or high-fat dairy. They are so easy to make, and can easily be thrown  into your lunch for a midday treat. Enjoy!! ❤


 

Chocolate Protein Brownies

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole wheat oat flour
  • 1/3-1/2 cup Stevia
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 scoops high-quality chocolate or vanilla protein powder         (I use Shakeology or Muscle Milk Naturals because neither of them have dairy. However, you can use one with whey if dairy isn’t a problem.  I would not recommend a soy protein or plant-derived protein powder for these)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 8 oz. baby food      (yes, you read that correctly 🙂 I use two of those little jars of baby food, Pears and Raspberries)
  • 3 tbsp. cocoa powder

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In small bowl, combine: oat flour, baking soda, salt, protein powder, and cocoa

In medium bowl, combine: egg whites, stevia, water, and baby food

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Ready to bake!

Put contents of small bowl into medium bowl and mix well.

Spray 8×8 inch glass baking dish with Pam. Pour batter into baking dish.

Bake for 22-28 minutes, depending on how gooey or “cake-like” you want the brownies to be.

Take out of oven and let cool before cutting. Store in airtight container in refrigerator. (I put a damp paper towel over them to keep the brownies moist in the fridge). **These must be stored in the refrigerator or freezer because they have no preservatives and will spoil.

 

Yields: 16 brownies

Nutrition Information (per 2 brownies):

Calories: 95

Fat: 1.5g

Carbs: 11g

Protein: 10g

 

Remember, if you make healthy food choices 80% of the time, you’re on the right track. Now, you can count brownies into that 80%. 🙂 Happy baking!

 

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What I think about… Nike Studio Wrap Shoes

These shoes are great…. But not for all types of workouts. I do Turbo Fire and Turbo Kick at home on the carpet and in the studio at the gym. They are perfect for this kind of workout, HIIT, Insanity, Pilates, Zumba, yoga basically most plyometric workouts that don’t involve weighted exercises. I discovered the Nike Studio Wrap shoes and started using them because my knees and ankles were bothering me from all of the resistance/friction between the carpet in my house and my tennis shoes. The carpet was inhibiting full joint rotation from my hips down to my ankles. I’m sure many people have found this same problem while working out at home. I gave these a try, and I absolutely love them for the workouts I mentioned above. Remember, everyone is different. Do what is best for you body. Listen to what your body is telling you.

Although I use them very frequently, they are not suitable and don’t provide enough stability for many other exercises. For example, I wouldn’t recommend walking on the treadmill or using the elliptical in these wrap shoes. Also, if you’re using resistance bands, you can’t put the band under your feet (without pain!) and use it like you would with tennis shoes. The same goes for weight training exercises where you need to stabilize and plant your feet to prevent injury from heavy lifting. Plus, no one wants to drop a weight on those toes! Ouch!

For those of you that decide these shoes would be perfect for your needs, they are really comfortable and provide enough traction to stop from hyper rotation or extension of the joints. They don’t move around on your feet, are easy to wash, and perfect to just throw on and workout. No socks required. Also, the Studio Wrap shoe fabric is thick yet flexible and wraps tightly around your entire foot to give you stability. If you do decide to wear them to a gym studio, be prepared, your toes will get a little dirty (just like they would if you walked around outside barefoot). But, it gives you a really good reason to go out and treat yourself for that pedicure you want and deserve! 😉 Overall, I give them a thumbs up. Absolutely worth the $40-$50 price tag! You can order them on http://www.nike.com, and they do come in another style than the ones I have. I haven’t seen them in stores, so it appears as though you can only get them online (but I didn’t look in any dance wear specific stores). I hope you love them too! 🙂

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Short on time? Try these on for size!

I have been creating some great  videos with exercises you can use anywhere at anytime on Instagram and YouTube. Check out my Instagram page, @dana_titus or search using #resiliencyfitness. You can also find me on YouTube! Just search for “Dana Titus.” They are a work in progress and these are only the beginning of a new and amazing chapter in my life. Watch them and, more importantly, use them! As always, if you have a question about any of the exercises (or other content) please don’t hesitate to send me a message. Much love! 🙂

Setting SMART Goals

Humans. If we had to pick the one thing we hate most in the whole world, it would be change. It is just our nature. Change involves doing something different, pushes us out of our comfort zone (our favorite place to be), and honestly, requires work! However, what we don’t see is the fact that our lives change in some way EVERY SINGLE DAY. So, if that doesn’t seem like a big deal, then why do we see some changes as being monumentally out of reach to the point that even trying feels like wasted effort? Well, there are a couple of reasons: A. Only looking at the big picture. B. Seeing the goal as a means to an end rather than a process.  C. Not rewarding yourself for small changes along the way. whether you think you can

See, when it comes to fitness and living a healthy lifestyle, the change you really need to make doesn’t have anything to do with dietary restrictions, working out to the point of exhaustion, or a number on the scale. It is MENTAL change. When you can change your outlook, the way you look at your goals, and believe that you and only you are in control of your own life, everything else falls into place. I’m going to make mental change a series of posts, because as I said before, none of us like being inundated with change. We want to be successful and in control of our own lives. (Trust me, I know this for a fact. I’ve lived it)

The first catalyst to change is a decision. It is a yes or no question “Do I want to live a healthy lifestyle or myself and am I willing to make small changes to live the life I deserve?” Now if you didn’t answer “yes,” what were you thinking about? What was holding you back? See, we are hardwired to protect ourselves from change and avoid commitment. You may be thinking about all of the factors against you, speak negatively about your ability, have already determined the outcome, or don’t really know where to start. First you have to say “yes.” Then, I can show you where to start.

Have you said YES? If you still haven’t, write down why. We will tackle these in another post (or many).

OK, you’re decided to make a change. Now, you have to create a goal, a SMART goal.

Specific

First, your goal has to be specific. What do I mean by that? It has to state what you will do, how long, and how many times, let’s say, per week you will do something that leads you towards an outcome. Examples: “I will walk on the treadmill at 3.5 mph, for 30 minutes, five days per week.” Or “I will incorporate at least one serving of vegetables and one serving of fruit into each meal, 3-4 times a day, 6 days per week.”

Measurable
Your goal has to be something you can measure. Why? Because you need to base your outcome on where you start and where you want to be. Looking at the walking specific statement above~ That can be measured using a calendar. Each day, when you perform that activity, you put a big star on that day. At the end of the week, you can see if you reached that 5 days per week goal. The easiest way to measure a goal of this nature is, of course, by weight. I don’t like relying on a number, but for many people, it’s a huge motivator. You have your baseline, or starting weight, and can monitor your progress very easily and even convert it into a graph. You could also calculate your BMI throughout your fitness journey or take body measurements weekly/biweekly/monthly.

Attainable

This is where the “Aiming-Too-High” (aka ATH) article comes into play. Many times, people set goals so high that no human being could ever achieve. If you haven’t worked out in 10 years, don’t expect to be able to start working out 6 days a week for an hour each day. When you set unattainable goals, it’s setting you up for what you perceive to be failure. Instead, smaller goals should be set. They should be a challenge, but not so much of a challenge that they put you right back where you started. Goals should be small because at each milestone, you know you’ve achieved what you had set out to achieve. Then, you can set another goal. With each triumph comes more self-confidence, more motivation, and more self-efficacy. You know you can do it. Also, you can reward yourself! Give yourself some credit! We’ll go into this in a later article as well! 🙂

Time-Bound stopwatch-1-256328-m

When you set a goal, there has to be a starting point and an ending point (goal attainment). Without it, you lose motivation because you feel like you can just do it “whenever.” There’s no deadline, so what’s the rush, right? There’s a reason we have deadlines. So, again, make it attainable. Don’t try to lose 20 pounds in 2 weeks. Not possible. (Unless you didn’t eat or drink and exercised for hours each day….seriously, don’t do that!!)  A more attainable goal might be to lose 6 pounds in one month. So, one month from that start date is your deadline. Now, what do you have to do to make it happen? We’ll work through that too, but remember, each and every person is different. There isn’t just one way to reach your fitness/wellness goal, trust me. Find what works for you. There’s more out there than you think! There’s a soulmate workout waiting for you. You just need to find it.

So, putting that all together, you can see how important setting a goal is. Without a goal, what are you working towards? Without a SMART goal, it’s hard to develop a plan for getting there. When you write your goal, put:

S

M

A

R

T

along the side of a piece of paper. Then, write notes so you can tie it all together instead of trying to think about everything at once. It’s easy to get confused and lose perspective. Think of it as an outline, a guide, a tool, for writing your goals. Take it one letter at a time! Creating a SMART goal is the first step on your trip towards becoming the person you want to be…. the person you know you are.

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