I have moved 

Hello beautiful people! 

  
I have been enjoying blogging for the past 7 months and I have met some amazing people through the blogging community. Even though I am still learning a lot, with the support and help from my husband I have decided to upgrade and self host.  My website domain is still the same but it’s now hosted through me. I apologize for the lack of posts, I have some great posts coming up for you all but all of my time and energy has been focused on this merge that has not been easy a it sounded when I first decided to go with this. I want to thank my followers and especially some of you regular ones that have been supporting me. I hope to see you all on the other side. You can follow me on social media as well for updates. 

 

Healthy Mom in a Busy World


 

Healthier snacking while at work or on the go

Hello beautiful people,

I wanted to share with you some of my favorite snacks to keep at work if I get munchies or hungry. Some of these I keep in my purse for on the go so I do not get trapped into bad eating. These change so that I do not get bored. But I just restocked the cabinet at work today so I figured to share with you.

1. Oat Fit maple and brown sugar oatmeal with flax. 100 calories 3g of protein, 12 g of fiber, 1g of sugar and 9% sodium.

2. Multigrain Rice Crackers with sea salt 130 cal, 2g of protein, 1g of sugar,  6% of sodium per 16 crackers. I sometimes eat these with freshly maid hummus.

3. Kale Chips 95 calories, 4g of protein, 4g of sugar, 12% sodium per half a bag. I buy these at Kroger sometimes but this specific one I bought at Marshalls for $3.99 and its the best one yet.

4. Dry Roasted Edamame 130 cal, 14g of protein, 8g of fiber, 1g of sugar, 3% sodium. This has 40% more protein than peanuts. Can be found here

5. Baked Goldfish Pretzel 130 cal, 3g of protein, less than 1g of sugar, 18% of sodium per 43 pieces.

6. Low Sodium Rice Cakes 40 calories, 1 gram of protein, and 0% sodium. I spread peanut butter on them with honey or raisins.

7. Pure Protein Bars 180-200 calories (varies by flavor of bar) 19-22g of protein, 3g of sugar, 2g of fiber, 4% sodium. I love these. I have them for breakfast with coffee, post workout, or when I am really hungry but will not be home to eat soon enough lol. I always carry one in my purse. I get a variety pack here.

8. Apples I always have an apple around. I snack on them all the time. I sometimes slice them and dip into peanut butter.

9. Earth Balance natural peanut butter and flaxseed 190 cal, 2g of sugar, 7g of protein per 2 Tbsp of serving. Its high in Omega-3. I spread this on my rice cakes, dip my apples in it or just eat a spoon of it alone 🙂 Buy at Kroger or here.

10. Dark chocolate I LOVE chocolate. Its worth every penny to me to get good quality chocolate. This one is 170 cal, 2g of protein, 0 % sodium. I have this when I have a really sweet tooth, its gluten and dairy free. No artificial anything. I love it! I am a firm believe in you get what you pay for, same goes for good tasting food. I buy this at Kroger for $1.97 or a box of 12 on amazon for $6.30 here.

11. Horizon low fat organic milk for my morning cereal days. I buy this for the kids too since it doesn’t have to be refrigerated, good for lunchboxes and travel. I buy it at Kroger when they have 10 for $10 or on Amazon here.

If you have Amazon prime and plan ahead you can always get better deals on healthier food. We order a lot of our stuff through amazon.


  
  

I also bring fresh vegetables and fruits and keep them in the fridge.

What do you guys like to snack on?

Zucchini Pancakes

Hello beautiful people!

Last night I made zucchini pancakes and thought I’d share the recipe with you lovelies.

2 medium to large zucchini’s washed and grated, you may peel skin if you wish
2 tablespoons grated sweet or red onion
2 medium to large eggs lightly beaten
7 tablespoons of flour
2 tablespoons of grated parmesan
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of kosher salt
black pepper to taste (some people like a lot I used 1/2 teaspoon)

Grate the zucchini into a bowl. Immediately stir in the onions and eggs. Stir in the flour, baking soda, salt and pepper. Mix well then had parmesan and stir. Heat a large skillet over medium heat with non-stick spray. When the skillet is hot lower heat to medium-low and drop heaping soup spoon of batter into skillet. Cook the pancakes about 2 minutes on each side. Spray the skillet each time before adding batter. Place the pancakes on a sheet pan and put in over for  about 10 minutes. (Pre-heat over to 325). Serve warm with sour cream or tzatziki sauce. 

DIY quick tzatziki sauce
2 cucumbers peeled and seeded
1 tablespoon of fresh dill (you can use dry if you want, tasted better fresh)
2 cloves of garlic
1 1/2 cup of plain greek yogurt
1 teaspoon of olive oil
salt and pepper (EVEN BETTER is dry ranch)
Place all into a food processor or a bullet if you have one and pulse.

I work out but I am not loosing weight?!

Hello beautiful people!

I have been asked by a few of the readers how I lost weight after my recent post pregnancy post. Three people told me pretty much the same thing…”I work out but I don’t see any change so I get discouraged and just quit.”

  
First let me tell you that I am not a nutritionist (hopefully one day soon I will be) nor am I a  personal trainer. Whatever I share with you has been from my own personal experience, hard work, studying and research and what I have learned over the years. I will list 7 possible reasons why you may be stuck, but usually I find that a lot of people easily fall under the first reason.

1. You’re eating wrong foods If you are not loosing weight, the first place you should look into is the kitchen. I see a lot of people working hard at the gym to burn off calories than using that as an excuse to eat whatever they want. “I just worked out I can eat that,” when in reality you are being counter productive. Diet is 80% of your weight loss battle. The exact foods you should be eating depend mostly on your body type and metabolism, a good rule of thumb is to just stick to all natural whole foods. Eat all your natural sugars (fruits) in the morning. Eat your starchy carb foods (whole grains, potatoes, brown rice) on days you will to a heavy weight training and on cardio or light exercise days eat high protein (lots of lean meats, eggs, etc.) and vegetables. Avoid prepackaged foods and foods with ingredients you can not pronounce 🙂

2. You are eating too much If you already cleaned up your diet and you are still not loosing weight, it may be that you’re simply eating too much. In order to shed pounds your body needs to run a calorie deficit, meaning you need to burn more than you consume. I recommend using a food tracking app like MyFitnessPal to keep you on track.

3. You are doing too much cardio Yes you read that right!! Cardio is necessary and it keeps your heart healthy, boosts your metabolism, and gives you a good sweat (you should break one daily 🙂 ). However, only doing cardio or doing too much of it can actually add to the problem. Longer cardio sessions like staying on the elliptical or treadmill for 90 minutes or going for regular 5-mile runs can eat away at your lean muscle mass, which is essential for increasing your metabolism to burn more calories. Not to mention it dramatically increases your appetite, making you more susceptible to unnecessary snacking or overeating. Instead try doing 20-25 minute cardio then lifting weights or body weight exercises or just a good HIIT session. PopSugar Fitness on YouTube has awesome HIIT workouts you can do at home. They are short workouts but highly effective.

4. You are not lifting weights This one goes in hand with # 3. I am not saying you can not or should not do cardio. If you run purely for enjoyment of running (I DO) than by all means continue. But if your primary goal is fat loss, there are other forms of exercise that give a much better and quicker results. The best way to loose weight and gain lean muscle is to do some sort of strength training in addition to your cardio.

WEIGHTS

5.You are not working hard enough Your workouts should be intensity dependent, not time dependent. Keep this fact in mind: the harder you work the shorter your workouts time may be. That’s why again I favor the HIIT technique mostly. It’s so important to maximize your time spent in the gym or fitness class so you can achieve that coveted ‘afterburn’ effect which keeps your metabolism revved for 24-48 hours afterward. Don’t waste your time chatting with a friend at the gym and do no rest too long between workout sets.

Not HARDGOOD WORKOUT

6.You are not taking time to recover Recovery and rest are often more important than the workout itself. It’s during those periods that your body does most of the actual fat burning. So give yourself that time to fully recover so you’re ready to work hard the following day. Most importantly, listen to your body. Push yourself, but also give it some love, too.

rest-day

7.Your body is under too much stress
Exercise is a stressor on your body. When you have a good healthy balance of exercise related stress and recovery time, your body is healthy and can loose its excess fat. Not giving your body enough time to recover can also be a negative  as you’ll start to produce an excessive amount of cortisol, a stress hormone. However, when your body is exposed to cortisol for longer periods of time, it starts to cause negative effects, like stubborn fat in areas you don’t want. Exercise isn’t the only stressor that can produce excess cortisol. A very stressful personal or professional life can also make your body produce too much of this hormone. Make sure you’re keeping your mental and emotional health in check in addition to your physical health. Always work on total body wellness.

canstock18983771

I hope that this post helps some of you get over your weight loss plateau. I love that you guys ask me questions via Facebook, it provides me with great writing material for all of my readers, so please keep the questions coming. If you do not already follow me on Facebook you can do so here.

Til next time ❤ Maya


Let us all have a fresh start

Hello beautiful people!


I know this is a long post but please take a moment to read it and accept and please share the challenge to see how many of us can complete it! Anyone can participate. YOU WILL THANK YOUR SELF FOR DOING IT! We always have room for improvement to better our selfs not only with our physical appearance but more importantly our mind and soul 😊


If you do accept the challenge and post pictures or updates on some days please use #healthymomchallenge #freshstartchallenge #julyfreshstart #30daychallenge

I have always been fascinated by minimalists. Those are the people that have a lifestyle of owning just the essentials, in other words living your life with only the things you need. But its truly its more than that. It is marked by clarity, purpose, and intentionality. At its core, minimalism is the intentional promotion of the things we most value and the removal of everything that distracts us from it. It is a life that forces intentionality. And as a result, it forces improvements in almost all aspects of your life. I have been “cleansing” my belongings gradually (especially my closet) in the hopes of learning and adjusting to this type of life style. I always admired people that can pack for 7 days in a carry on and look fabulous and effortless all the time. But material things are not the only things minimalist master to live without, they free their minds more, and live a much stressful life. Minimalism is not external but internal. It helps people find freedom from external clutter, it does not take the next step of helping people find freedom and unity in their heart and soul. I could write days about this and if you are interested for me to tell you more about this leave a comment below. Like I said I am not there yet but have done some research and wish to achieve this goal. I am starting a 30 day challenge in July and would like to invite you my dear readers to try it out with me.

One and only rule is: Do one assignment every day, it does not need to be in order. Don’t skip a day. That’s it.

You can print out here July 2015 Challenge.

July 2015

Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
1 2 3 4
Mediated for 15 min Stay offline for one day No-complaint day Clean out your closet
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
No electronics at all. NONE Don’t wear makeup Go for a walk alone. Journal for 5-15 minutes Identify your stress triggers Clear our your drawers/junk drawers Plan a local trip
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Be grateful Clean out your makeup collection Clean your makeup brushes Clean up your social media Write down your goals Change your bedtime routine Evaluate your last 3 purchases
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
Let go of something. Change your morning routine Write down your priorities   Call a family member Create a reading list Do not eat/drink anything bad today Leave this day unplanned
26 27 28 29 30 31
Reorganize a room NO social media until evening Volunteer for something Call an old friend One thing at a time
  1. Meditate for 15 minutes I have mentioned that I have stated meditation after my car accident. I use the app HeadSpace on my iPhone. It is simple to use and it truly does help. I have been doing it for 5 minutes daily but will need to squeeze and extra 10 minutes and do it for 15. I find it very helpful.
  2. Stay offline for one day On our recent vacation I did not have wifi in our room, I did not want to purchase it so that we did not log online. Many of us spend more time looking down into our phones rather than the world around us. I was offline couple of day. I spent 2 days of 5 minute quick message checking from family at home and just to say we are ok and check on them. Other than that 7 days offline and nothing changed….I mean absolutely nothing. Everything was still the same. You will not miss anything but will rest your eyes and brain from social media drama.
  3. No-Complaint day This day try not to complain at all. Complaining is never productive. Complaining makes our thoughts even more negative which hurts us and the people that are listening to us. It’s a ripple effect. If you find your self complaining simply think of another way to solve the problem or let it go. Ask people that are around you if you are complaining to stop you, sometimes we don’t even know when we are doing it.
  4. Clean out your closets Clean out your wardrobe closet and any other closet you have time to clean J. For your clothes start by picking 10 pieces you absolutely could not be without. Look at it this way, if you had to evacuate your house quickly pick 10 items you absolutely must have and put those aside. Rest of the clothes sort them out and really think about when was the last time you wore them and if you really will wear it. Donate the clothes if you have not worn it in the last year because you simply will not wear it.
  5. No electronics at all Today the challenge is not to have any electronics at all. No tv, no phone or phone camera and no computer. Tell your family that you will not be reachable unless it’s an emergency not to call you. Go out with your spouse and family and do something fun, go to the pool, park, ice cream shop, anything. You do not have take pictures of this either to post online, just simply ENJOY it your self.
  6. Do not wear make up This is totally a challenge for me because of having really bad adult acne skin issues but I will be a trooper and do it J We may discover many of the products we usually plaster on in daily we actually do not need.
  7. Go for a walk alone I do this often and I enjoy it. Take a walk alone, you can do it during lunch or before work even after work if you can find time. You can listen to music but do not browse or talk on your phone. This is to clear your mind.
  8. Journal for 5-15 minutes Writing things down is very therapeutic. I always joke that people that over share personal info on social media should get a journal but in all honesty it is really true. Personal stuff should be kept personal, if you are frustrated, happy or sad you should put the pen to paper and see how much better you will feel afterwards. I highly recommend this five minute journal that has been put together by Alex Ikonn over at FiveMinuteJournal. It is brilliant and easy and you will find a lot of positivity out of it.
  9. Identify your stress Pinpoint your stress. Try taking notes of your stress levels and activities throughout your day, then read the notes and try to think about what you could do to prevent and counteract them in the future. For example, if you are stressed out because of traffic every day simply understand that it is something you can not change unless you can change your route. Instead try to listen to music, jam out to your favorite songs or listen to an audio book. It’s not worth the stress or negative thoughts about something that can not be changed.
  10. Clean out your junk drawers, dresser drawers or any other drawers J Just clean it all out, its called junk drawer for a reason. De-clutter your home and keep only the necessary things. You will find that most of the time we do not even open these drawers, we just do not need or use things out of them. CLEAN THEM OUT.
  11. Plan a local trip Plan an all day trip to a place you usually would not find your self going to. For example if you are not nature lover plan a trip to a state park. I promise you that you will find at least one thing that you enjoy…a view, a waterfall, people watching…
  12. Be grateful Be mindful and appreciate the little things (and big) that are already part of your life. Do not be consumed by social pressure of what you need to have. There are many people that do not even have clean water so I am sure whatever situation you are in is better than some. Be happy, be thankful, and be humble. Write a list of everything or anyone you are grateful for.
  13. Clean out your make up collection Now ladies, we all have those 5 things we probably use daily (foundation, bronzer/blush, eyeliner and mascara…maybe a lipstick or two). Do we really need 500 eye shadows??? Natural is the best. Buy a palate that works for your complexation and eye color, everything else is unnecessary junk.
  14. Clean your make up brushes Your brushes should be cleaned technically after every use but I know none of us really do. I soak then take my brushes into the shower with me once a week and give them a deep clean (hair wash). Its pointless to use expensive makeup and creams for our face and plaster it on with overgrowth of bacteria on our brushes.
  15. Clean up social media How many of you actually know your friends on social media? Be a little more selective on who you follow and who you allow to see your pages and your personal pictures. Do you really need to be friends with friend of a friend, or people you have not seen or spoken to in years?
  16. Write down your goals Do you have any personal goal or family goals you would like to achieve? Write them down, discuss them and actually take action in achieving them.
  17. Change your bedtime routine Change something about your bedtime routine. Prepare your lunch or meals for the next day so morning routine is smoother. Have cup of calming tea before bed, instead of browsing your tablet or your phone listen to relaxing music. Read a book, or read a book to your child. Have a pillow talk with your spouse.
  18. Evaluate your last 3 purchases We are all guilty of mindless spending. Think about your last 3 purchases and think about how useful they turned out to be. Learning to only buy necessary things is the key to living a simpler life.
  19. Let go of something
    Letting go of something is hard, but sometimes holding on to something is even harder. Think about something you are holding on to and then free your self.
  20. Change your morning routine
    Instead of immediately checking your email or social media, meditate workout or journal.
  21. Write down your priorities Write down your priorities in life and evaluate. Take a really close look and see if your priorities are in order, maybe discuss it with your spouse or loved one and you never know some priorities may change for the better.
  22. Call a family member Call a family member that you have not spoken to in a while. Family is very important and talking to a cousin or aunt/uncle you have not spoken to in a while may just be what your soul needs.
  23. Create a reading list Create a reading list even if you are not a reader. Start at least one book and read half way through it before you quits, there is high chance you will continue to read the book and enjoy it.
  24. Do not eat or drink anything bad for a day Today’s challenge is to have a completely clean day. You can not drink anything artificial, you can have water, coffee or tea. No artificial sugar, fast food, eating out or prepackaged. At the end of the day you will realize that today you probably had much more energy and focus than on days you are not eating clean.
  25. Leave this day unplanned For once leave Saturday unplanned. Do not plan anything ahead and just see what the day brings with your family.
  26. Reorganize a room Spruce up a room in your home, maybe your family room or bedroom. De-clutter and rearrange furniture if possible. Sometimes the change is very welcome and creates a more relaxing environment. If most of your surface space is covered evaluate if you really need everything in the room and clear it out, I promise you less is more. Change up the room colors, try to find a color palate that is relaxing for you.
  27. No social media until evening Another great day to be social media free. Today instead of spending time on social media to see what your friends are up to maybe call them (not text) and meet up for coffee, lunch or dinner. Be social in real life. You may not even feel the need to check it at night.
  28. Volunteer With busy lives, it can be hard to find time to volunteer. However, the benefits of volunteering are enormous to you, your family, and your community. The right match can help you find friends, reach out to the community, learn new skills, and even advance your career. Volunteering with your kids is even more fun. Children watch everything you do and I have posted about this before. By giving back to the community, you show them firsthand how volunteering makes a difference and how good it feels to help others.
  29. Call an old friend A lot of us like to communicate through social media and text messages that we have forgotten what our friends sound like. Sometimes you just need to hear your friend’s voice, kind words and a smile. Some time catching up will bring up old memories and leave you both in a good mood.
  30. One thing at a time Our lives are so busy, from the moments our alarm goes off to the moment we go to bed we are constantly multi tasking. I challenge you to practice doing one task at a time. Take a breather. Do not move onto the to the next task or even think about it until the first one is completed. This alone will reduce a great amount of stress.

Things I wish I did differently my first pregnancy

Hello beautiful people!!!

I though I could share with you things I wish I had done and knew differently during my first pregnancy. Some of you may be able to relate and those that have not had kids yet will hopefully take something from this post.

My oldest son is 8, he will be 9 in November. I was 19 when I got pregnant with him. Throughout my teen years I was always on some type of diet, unfortunately even those teen magazines put “skinny pressure” on us early on. I have a very athletic body type. No matter how little I weighed I never looked  skinny and I love that about my self now but I did not back then, so through out high school I always felt the need to diet so I can fit in with the rest of the girls. When I became pregnant shortly after getting married I used that as an excuse to eat whatever I never allowed my self to eat before.

I am 5’8 and my starting weight was 155, the day I went to deliver I was 222 even 😳 That’s 66 pounds, my 8 year old weighs that much now!!!!


I was only 5 month pregnant in that middle picture, and in that December picture above I was one month post partum. I could not recognize myself.At one point these were the pictures I would burry in a deep dark hole and never show it to anyone, but I am proud of the way I look today, I have never felt more comfortable in my body before but it took a lot of hard work and discipline to get there.

1 year after first pregnancy.


2 years after 


During my pregnancy I ate anything and everything all the time and I used my pregnancy as an excuse. I remember eating 4 honeybuns in one sitting. I had acid reflux so bad that I would vomit blood because my esophagus could not handle any more acid. Did I meantion how swollen and how much edema I had?! I went from shoe size 8 to 11 wide. I wish I knew better, I wish I would have nourished my body and my child differently. I was at such high risk for gestational diabetes and thank God I did not get to that. Luckily my son was healthy, but he was 9lb 14 oz and yes I had to have a c-section. I was so upset with my self that five months after having my son I was still 195 pounds. That’s not the worst part, the worst is that I risked gestational diabetes, the extra weight put pressure on my joints and the heartburn was out of this world. I had severe leg cramps even when sleeping. Of course there are risks of complications during delivery, and like I said I ended up with a C-section. I got stretch marks not only in my belly like most people do during pregnancy, I got them all over, back of my legs, arms, thighs…everywhere. I blame my self completely, but I also blame my doctor for not putting more pressure on me and telling me the risks, he would always jokingly tell me “wooooa Maya lay off salt” and that’s it. He never mentioned that an overweight mother is more likely to give birth to a large baby with a greater risk of diabetes and obesity throughout childhood. That would have scared me enough to be more careful. So I am using my self as your PSA…be healthy all the time but be even more careful what you put in your body during the time you are nurturing and growing another human being. “Eating for two” is a LIE, you are eating for your self and a pea size that will slowly grow and get enough from what you eat for ONE. Feed your self with quality not quantity.

It took me a year and a lot of visits to the gym…no really A LOT, to loose the weight I gained. It was torture. I had to retrain my MIND (yes this is the hardest part to train) to learn to eat healthy. Not diet by eating nothing but salads and sandpaper lol but eat clean and nutritional meals. My second pregnancy I was much more educated, and was much more careful. I only gained 29 pounds, and I had no side effects of pregnancy other than the belly to show for it 🙂 I ran in my first trimester, and most of second, then I had to stop because my bladder could not handle it 🙂 There are pleanty of websites, apps and resources that can help you with this. My favorite one that I used a lot was Fit Pregnancy.

December 2014

Please do not get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with gaining weight during pregnancy. It is ABSOLUTELY normal, but the normal weight to gain is 25-30 pounds. There is nothing wrong with stretchmark’s either. I call them my souvenirs from pregnancy 🙂 Most of us can not avoid them and some of you lovely ladies are blessed to not have them. However, its it important to take care of YOURSELF and the BABY in the best possible way. We may enjoy the junk food at the moment but the reality that hits us later is just not worth the temporary indulgence. There are many delicious meals and desserts that you can eat that are still clean and healthy you just have to put the work in to fix them for your self. YOU OWE IT TO YOURSELF AND YOUR CHILD.

              The day of my wedding 09/2005                                         My anniversary 09/2013  
                        2006                                       2012                                             2015

Leftover Quinoa Pasta

Hello Beautiful people!

As some of you know I made stewed meat and quinoa pasta for dinner last night, as usual I cooked more than enough pasta so this is what I do with leftover pasta because we do not throw away food much less quinoa pasta lol 😁😁😃

I had about a cup of elbow pasta left over.   

I decided to add

1/2 avocado

1/2 diced tomatoe

2 small balls of mozzarella diced

1 can of tuna drained 

1 teaspoon of my homemade mayo (you can skip this step) 

Salt and pepper to taste.