Saturday, February 27, 2016


I started this journey more than two years ago.  TimeHop keeps reminding me of where I was one and two years ago.  This has me really thinking about what transformed my weight loss journey most.
The first seven  months of my weight loss journey were pretty much a crap shoot.  Once I started focusing on my fitness goals, things came into much better perspective.  I finally got the courage and self esteem I needed to keep going.
With the first two months of 2016 just about over, if one of your goals for this year is to lose weight, I challenge you to come up with some additional fitness goals to boost your motivation.  Chances are you will have to go outside your comfort level, you might think you can't do it, you may question, "Why am I doing this?"

For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?
Luke 14:28

I started to see the best results in losing weight when I actually improved my nutrition.  Equally important was my focus on achieving measurable fitness goals...the Rugged Maniac (a 5K mud race), doing push ups, pull ups and training for the Ride to Remember.  Endeavoring to accomplish these goals shifted my focus from weight loss to fitness and helped to motivate me unlike trying to lose weight alone.  I would call it fuel for my journey.
One of my biggest challenges was doing push-ups.  I was determined to do them and was so discouraged at not seeing immediate progress.  Then one day, for ha has, I tried to show the girls at work what I was trying to do and I did two of them.  That tiny little boost kept me energized to keep working at them and eventually I met my goal to do three sets of ten push-ups.  (Now I do them like it's nothing, but looking back to last year makes me smile.)

April 20, 2015:  I was finally able to do three sets of 10 push-ups!  (This is only one set, but still...)

After that, Dmitriy challenged me to do pull-ups, I didn't think I'd be able to do them, and surprisingly it didn't take long.  I can now do three sets of 3-7 of them. The guys at the gym sometimes stop and comment, "Wow, that's impressive."  Because apparently a girl being able to do pull-ups is cool.
This was at the Marines Challenge after the Rugged Maniac in 2015.  I did 5 1/2.

Then he shifted my goal to doing tricep dips.  I could not do them.  My overall strength had improved significantly and the pull-ups came relatively easily, so I was discouraged at the lack of progress.  I used to try them and think, "You're never going to be able to do these.  This is stupid.  Why is he making you do these?"  Seriously, that's what went through my head.  Then one day, when I had a session with him, he had me tweak what I was doing ever so slightly and BAM, just like that I could do them.  It was remarkable.  Now I can do three sets of 5-8 dips.  They aren't easy and they probably never will be, but I can do them.

But Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all thins are possible."
Matthew 19:26

If you are trying to lose weight, and you find yourself wavering in your motivation, I challenge you to shift your focus from the weight loss to a couple of measurable fitness goals, like running a 5K, hiking, push-ups, or whatever else peaks your interest.  If you want some help coming up with some, check this website:  Top 25 Fitness Goals to Get in Awesome Shape.

Setting separate fitness goals is a strategic way to help you lose the weight you need to lose.  Come up with a plan to make what you want happen, act on it!  Then celebrate bench marks along the way, even the small ones.


To do this, you must be consistent, this is key to progress, both in weight loss and achieving your goals.  Dmitriy gave me exercises to improve my upper body strength and I did them about twice a week.  As part of my "pre-work out," I tried push-ups just about every other day, with my goal always to do one more push-up.  When I hit a plateau and got frustrated, I'd take a couple days off from trying them.  I'd go back in a couple days and suddenly I could do two more than I could the time before.  I kept trying.  I did not give up.  I was consistent.

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Romans 12:2

Flexibility & Mobility

A big part of my story is the debilitating pain I had in my left knee as a result of arthritis.  To deal with this pain, my training concentrated on strengthening the muscles in my leg, but also in flexibility and mobility.  Every day I spend several minutes stretching and foam rolling whichever part of the body I am planning to workout.  If I'm doing legs, I stretch and foam roll from my feet to my lower back.  Better than physical therapy, this is why I was able to overcome the pain I lived with 24/7, and why the surgeon cancelled my surgery.
When I am doing upper body workouts, my pre-workout includes stretching my arms, shoulders, back and chest (not pictured).   When I take a day off from the gym, I make sure to do some stretching and foam rolling at home (even if it's only for 10 minutes).  Where do I feel tight?  Where and I stiff?  What is sore?  That's where I focus.
Improving your flexibility and mobility is key to developing your overall fitness level. If you're not sure where to start, try with a beginner yoga class.

Training for the Ride to Remember did so much for me...not only did I accomplish the impossible, which gave me a huge boost for my self-confidence.  But now I love riding my bike more than anything.  It's given me something to look forward to and helps keep me focused on nutrition and fitness.
I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:13

Don't forget to HAVE fun!!!!  
It should not be a chore.  Take pride in your accomplishments.  Enjoy the process.

Question for you:  (Answer in the comments below.)
How are you doing with your goals for this year?

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Friday, February 19, 2016

My Week Off

In the North East there are two school breaks before Summer Vacation.  One in February and another in the spring, usually in April.  The February break coincides with President's Day and depending on where you live, the spring break coincides with either Easter or Patriots' Day.  Patriots' Day commemorates the start of the Revolutionary War and is an official holiday in several states in the USA.  I need both breaks.  

The LORD replied, "My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest."
Exodus 33:14

My week off has been largely focused on the puppy, Princess Leia.  I knew it would be a lot of work and tiring, but I forgot how draining it is to get up every night at 3 a.m. because she has to go out.  Wednesday night she didn't wake me up and had an accident in her crate.  
She can go up the stairs, but needs help going down.
Koby is getting used to her.  Look how tiny she is compared to him.
She is so adventurous and curious.  When I was vacuuming the other day, she followed me up the stairs and got stuck about half way up.  
She is absolutely adorable, especially when she's sleeping.  I am spoiling her rotten.  It's cute now when she's tiny and I let her sleep on me, but when she's 70 lbs. and expects to do the same thing, it won't be cute!  It's hard to resist her though.  
I have been spending time with my friend and classmate, Cindy.  We both have to finish our field experience and do our portfolio in school administration so we can graduate in May.  We are in the same shoes, dragging our heels about doing the journal.  I really abhor writing about what I do every day and how it relates to the standards of a school administrator.  If it weren't for Cindy, I don't think I'd do it at all.  I hate it that much.
Cindy loves the puppy.  She doesn't mind coming over to work together so she can get some puppy love.
I started reading this book:
Stronger Than You Think: Becoming Whole Without Having to Be Perfect
by Kim Gaines Eckhert
I was hooked right away.  In looking back at my life long struggle with weight, I can see how instead of taking care of myself, I used other things to try to be the perfect mother, perfect wife, perfect counselor and perfect Christian.  This resulted in high levels of anxiety and depression which I dealt with by doing even more things to keep me busy.  Now that I've taken time off from everything to focus on a new career pathway and to seek a healthier lifestyle, I am more acutely aware of how my "busyness" interfered with my wellness.  As time allows (with the new puppy), I think I will really enjoy this read. This paragraph describes most of my adult life:
Lillian, in her longing for wholeness was trying to make herself complete through a flurry of activities that were leaving her exhausted.  Jesus gently calls Lillian and us to be joined to him, and to let go of our futile attempts to make ourselves whole.  Instead, we can rest in the work he has already completed in us.  "Come to me, all you who are wearing and burdened, and I will give you rest," Jesus invites us.  "Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls."  (Matthew 11:28-29)*
I met some classmates for breakfast the other day.
I am trying to learn how to eat like a normal person again.  I did skip the potatoes, but the French Toast and eggs were phenomenal.  Bringing balance back to my life is a slow process.  If my lifestyle has truly changed, I need to be able to eat "normal foods" once in a while.  As long as I keep track of what I am eating and stick to my calories, it's okay to eat food like this on occasion.
My mother's birthday is February 22, so I typically take her shopping and out for lunch during winter break.  
We went to the mall and had a lot of fun!  I picked up a bunch of things at the Christmas Tree Shops, got these leggings at New York & Company.  The "gray" ones are actually green.  I don't have anything to wear with them yet, but it will be fun to find something.  

I also got fitted for a new bra at Victoria's Secret.  Remember, I was complaining about the floating boobs.  Well, now my bra really fits. AND I was surprised that I was right about my 34B's.  I thought I was smaller than that, but it's probably just the style bra I've been wearing.  As expensive as Victoria's Secret is, it's worth the investment.

I hate that my bras are bigger than my breasts.  Now I think my new bra will solve that problem.
New leggings with my new bra.  No more floating boobs.
Yesterday was the one year anniversary of my blog.  Tracey's Getting Fit started February 18, 2015.  

My very first post was entitled, "It's About More Than Just Weight Loss" and that holds true today.  My journey towards fitness has become a journey to health and wellness.  Now I seek to give back, to inspire others. 

Anxiety in a man's heart weights him down, but a good word makes him glad.
Proverbs 12:25

With that said, I am at a point now in my education where I have to buckle down and complete my degree.  I need to use the same discipline it took to lose the weight and to train for the Ride to Remember and channel that into my studies.  Instead of writing a blog entry every time I get inspired about something, I am going to take my inspiration towards journaling about my Field Experience and compiling everything I need for my portfolio.  Writing my blog makes me happy, so I've decided that new entries to Tracey's Getting Fit will be a reward for completing a benchmark.  I expect to complete approximately one entry per week,  I appreciate your support and encouragement.

So now finish doing it as well, so that your readiness in desiring it may be matched by your completing it out of what you have.
2 Corinthians 8:11 ESV

Stay tuned.  Check back weekly for a new post.  And be sure to catch up with some of my older posts as well.

Here are a couple of my favorites from the past year:
Question for you:  (Answer in the comments below.)
How do you stop procrastinating?

Now:  Subscribe to new posts!  When a new post is added, you will receive an email notice so you can check it out.  I promise:  no SPAM and I won't share your email address with anyone.  Look at the top right side of the page to subscribe.  

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Twitter:  @TraceyFit99
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*Gaines Eckhert, K.  (2007).  Stronger than you think: Becoming whole without having to be perfect.  Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Do You Really Want It? Guest Spot

I'm exhausted!  Our lives have turned completely upside down with our  newest family addition.  I'll write more about her and how the rest of the family is (or is not) acclimating to her.  Here's a sneak peak:
I really am in love!  She is so sweet and so beautiful.  I know it looks like we have more than one puppy, but we only took home one.  The second puppy is one of her litter mates, taken at the breeder's house on puppy pick up day. 

Do you have any idea how cold this is?  Try training a puppy in this weather.  She's doing great, though!

This is Koby's bowl.  Look how little she is!!!!
With all the excitement of the new puppy, my blog has been neglected.  Bear with me.  I have a couple ideas brewing.  Speaking of ...
Amen!  Especially with the puppy waking me in the wee hours.
In the mean time, I had the opportunity to write a guest post on Dee's Blog, "Break Out the Skinny Girl."  I first started reading her blog in September.   She shares her journey to Skinny Town in a charming way which is both honest and humorous.   I can so relate to her. This weekend, she featured  me in a guest post, where I shared my thoughts, "Do you really want it?" Check it out!

Question for you:  (Answer in the comments below.)
What's your favorite hot beverage?  How do you take it?

Now:  Subscribe to new posts!  When a new post is added, you will receive an email notice so you can check it out.  I promise:  no SPAM and I won't share your email address with anyone.  Look at the top right side of the page to subscribe.  

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Twitter:  @TraceyFit99
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Thursday, February 11, 2016

Breaking News

I have some really exciting news to share!  Our family is growing!!  On Saturday we will be going from a family of four plus one dog and one cat to a family of four plus one dog, one care and a PUPPY!  Yes, a puppy!!!

Introducing to the world, our newest addition:
This is our newest baby:  Leia
Yes, as in Princess Leia.

She is 7 weeks old, born on Christmas Eve.  We get her on Saturday.  I am so excited.  Koby's world will be turned upside down.
This is Koby
Ok, so that's exciting family news, but there's MORE!

My journey over the past two years has been rewarding in more ways than I can begin to express.  And it's in ways I never anticipated.   Around the time that I did the Ride to Remember last fall, I started a Facebook Group, "Wonder Women, Fitness For Life" where we encourage each other with our weight loss and fitness journeys.
From the Etsy Shop.
In January, I sponsored a weight loss challenge at school, "Commerce Biggest Loser Competition"

It's so rewarding to give back, to help others with their journey.

Yesterday, a student came to my office and told me he has lost 37 lbs. over the last 5 months, which I was super proud of him for that.  When he came down to our office, I saw him and I noticed he looked a lot thinner, but I can't say things like that to students.  So when he came in to talk to me, I was like, "That's so awesome!  I'm so proud of you!"  I asked him how he did it and he told me that he's been working out, he cut out junk food and has been drinking a lot of water.  But the best part is that he said, "You are my inspiration."

How I Feel
That's it!  That's exactly it!  I inspired him.  I am so overwhelmed with pride AND joy, it's hard to even explain the emotions.  My job is an incredible job.  A ton of paperwork and very frustrating sometimes.  But when I have a chance to make a difference in a student's life, that's when I get the biggest reward.  Usually I am helping students with personal or academic problems, or I am assisting a student with their college and career goals.  The rewards are countless.  But for the first time in my life, I have inspired someone to change their life in a positive way.  I can't begin to tell you how that feels.

There's more!

For the past year I have been sharing my journey with you on my blog.  I shared my story with my school district, who published an article about me.  But the scariest thing is about to happen.  Like, sharks in the ocean scary...

Next month, I am speaking at my church about my journey.  I won't be talking so much about how I  lost weight, but more about the journey I have had towards wellness, the impact body image has had on my self esteem and how taking time to work on me has helped me become more of what God wants me to be.  Obviously I will be talking about my weight loss, but I will also be sharing some of the darker things, like how I've had to deal with my anxiety and depression and the inner transformation that has occurred as a result of this journey.

If you are in the area, I would soooo love for you to join us.  We have two amazing speakers.  Our very own, Pastor Christan Causey will be speaking on Friday night and our keynote speaker is Rose Hinton.  In the afternoon we will have several different breakout sessions and I will be one of the speakers for those.  The theme of the event is, "Come Awake," which really spoke to me and is why I felt like I needed to share my story.

If you are interested, you can register online at

Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples.
Psalm 96:3 NKJV
That's it for the news, folks.  Stay tuned for more exciting adventures from the Coleman household.  I'll tell you all about Leia and how Koby and Sam the kitty respond to her.

Question for you:
(Answer in the comment section below.)

What's the most exciting thing happening in your world right now?

Now:  Subscribe to new posts!  When a new post is added, you will receive an email notice so you can check it out.  I promise:  no SPAM and I won't share your email address with anyone.  Look at the top right side of the page to subscribe.  

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Monday, February 8, 2016

February Funk

So it's Week Six of 2016.  How are you doing with your New Year's Resolutions and / or goals?  By this week, either you are well on your way towards accomplishing them OR you're just about ready to give up, if you have not already.

Here's a little litmus test to see if what you are doing is helping you achieve your goals...

1)  Do you remember your goals?  (What did you want to accomplish this year?  Why did you want to accomplish them?)

2)  What steps have you taken to accomplish them?

3)  Have you made a sincere effort?

4)  Are you satisfied with your results?

If you are trying and you are not satisfied with the results you are seeing, then you need to reevaluate.  Either your expectations are unrealistic or your strategy needs a new approach.

Unrealistic Expectations

If you want to lose 80 lbs. this year and you are not satisfied because you've only lost 10 lbs. so far, your expectations are too high.  This isn't a TV show you're living.  If you don't want to gain all the weight back, then 10 lbs. is a fantastic way to start.  You should be happy with those results.

A New Approach

Look at what you're doing to accomplish your goals.  Are you trying?  Is your effort truly genuine?  Maybe you need to come at this a different way.  Most of my friends who started this year trying to lose weight are doing things their own way.  They say things to me like, "Tracey, I just can't count calories like you do"  or  "I can't do meal prep like you do.  I just can't" and "I don't like to work out like you do.  I can't go to the gym every day."

So first think about your nutrition...

Food / Meal prep is a successful strategy for me.  What is far more important than food prep is meal planning.  It's not necessary to fix all my meals on Sundays for the following week.  But I do need to know on Sunday what the game plan is for dinner for the week and I do need to make sure I have enough items on hand for breakfast, lunch and snacks.   Planning is the most critical aspect of my nutrition.

Every night I make my breakfast and lunch for the next day and plan my snacks.  That's meal prep for me!
So, if you can't deal with food prep, just think through your meals for the week.  What will you have for dinner Sunday - Thursday?  Friday and Saturday are easy because you can have left overs or deal with those meals when you go grocery shopping.  This week, it's Taco Salad on Sunday, Italian on Monday and Wednesday, Tuesday will be chicken breasts with lentils and vegetables, Thursday will be a Rotisserie chicken from Costco with roasted sweet potatoes and vegetables.  BAM.  Done.  It's that easy.

Counting calories works for me.  I have seen the results.  But most people have a misguided notion of what I mean by counting calories.  I don't use a pen and paper to count my calories.  It takes minimal effort for me.  I scan the bar codes of the food I eat into MyFitnessPal and I add foods that have no bar code (meat and produce).  Because most of the food I eat is the same, I can just tell the app that I ate the same thing yesterday or click on the most recent food items.  It's very easy and takes the maximum of one minute for each meal.

But if you aren't ready for that yet, review my posts on nutrition.  Learning about the foods you eat and how they affect you will help you with your program.  (The links are at the bottom of this page.)

If you do nothing else, make sure to significantly increase your protein and try to cut down as much as you can on simple carbohydrates, especially things like pasta, white breads and sweets.  Eat lots of vegetables.  You can substitute zucchini or spaghetti squash for pasta.  Choose whole grain bread instead of white.

Have a sweet tooth?  Eat fruit instead of cookies and cake.  Buy some Skinny Cow ice creams to get you through the ice cream cravings.

If you are hungry between meals, have healthy snack options available such as fresh fruit, almonds, Greek yogurt, carrot and celery sticks.

Practice portion control.

Drink LOTS of water.

There are not shortcuts or quick fixes.  Sudden and rapid weight loss at the beginning of a diet is typical.  But if you have more than 25 lbs. to lose, it is easy to be discouraged after the first 10 lbs. come off.  Don't give up.  Just step back and reevaluate.

Next, re-examine your workout routine...

It was just about this time two years ago when I realized what I was doing was not working and I needed to change things up.  I would go into the gym a couple times a week and use the cardio machines for 30 minutes.  I hated that.  I did.  The pain in my knee kept me from doing anything else for fear of further injury.  This is when I got a personal trainer.  Having a trainer is an expensive commitment, and I understand that not everyone is able to do that.
I look kind of mad when I'm at the gym.  But seriously, this is my happy.  I'm in the zone.  I love to workout!
I will tell you, this.  I did NOT lose weight by using the cardio machines for 30 minutes every day.  I do NOT go to the gym for an hour every day to run on the treadmill, kill myself on the Stair Master or be bored on the elliptical.  In fact, I hate those machines and stay away from them at just about all costs.  That's right.  I hate the elliptical machine and I'm not afraid to say it.

Dare to do things differently.  

Take some aerobics classes.  Try yoga.  Do interval training.  LIFT WEIGHTS. 
I FINALLY can bench 100 lbs.  I can only do about 1 - 2 reps, but I can do it!!!  That's progress!!!  Dmitriy won't let me do them alone anymore though, so I have to have a spotter when I do them.  He doesn't want me to kill myself getting caught under the bar.  Okay, safety first!!!
Many women have the misconception that they won't lose weight if they lift weights and that if they do, they will look like a man.  There's also the belief by most overweight people that they need to lose weight FIRST before they lift weights or they will have muscles under their fat.  I'm not even sure what that means.  This kind of thinking is completely irrational.  If you're like I was two years ago and don't know how to do anything besides cardio, ask one of the fitness professionals at your local health club for a free assessment.  Usually they will give you some tips on how to get started.  Visit my favorite website, and check out their beginner workouts.  This one has a a lengthy list of exercises, which would probably cover two days of working out:  Best Beginner Weight-Training Guide.  They have multiple beginner workout suggestions with instructional videos and tips on how to do each exercise correctly and mistakes to avoid.
I've been working on core strengthening lately.  Core strengthening helps to improve my endurance and my performance on other lifts.
If you are in a funk, it's time to dig your heels in and refuse to give up.  This is the test to see if your resolution for 2016 is going to fail like every other resolution or if it will become a lifestyle change.  What will it be?

Read my post, "Getting Started" for some real inspiration on sticking with it!

Here are links to my posts on nutrition.  They are worth a second (or first) view if you need some suggestions on how to lose weight and keep it off.

Carbs:  The first post about carbohydrates.  What are they and why do we need them?

Carbs 2:  The second post about carbohydrates.   What are good carbs?  What's better? And what's best eaten sparingly?  And WHY are they such a struggle?

Nutrition Hot Topic:  Is it bad?:  Thinking about food choices.  What's good?  What's not?

Fabulous Fiber:  A brief discussion about the benefits of a high fiber diet.

Successful Secrets:  Two simple strategies I practice every day which helped me to lose weight and to now keep it off.

Successful Secrets: Part Two:  How planning my week's meals helps me to stay on track.  Menu and recipe ideas.

Nutrition 101, I talk about meal prep and provided you with several recipes and meal suggestions to get you started.  Check it out!

Flexible Dieting Basics:  A basic explanation of flexible tracking calories and macronutrients has been the most successful way for me to lose weight and keep it off.

Tracking Calories with MFP:  Some features of MyFitnessPal (MFP) explained.  This post has some tricks of the trade.

Foods to Try:  These are foods I try to always keep on hand and a couple recipes too.

Cravings:  Some tips on how to stave off and handle cravings when they hit.  

Wonder Woman:  I explain how I got the nickname "Wonder Woman" by tracking all my calories and macronutrients.  I give a brief explanation of macros here.

A Calorie is Not a Calorie:  This post talks about the different effect foods have on you.

Questions for you:
(Answer in the comment section below.)

Did you watch the Superbowl?  Did your team win?
What's one thing you are going to do differently this week to accomplish your goals?

Now:  Subscribe to new posts!  When a new post is added, you will receive an email notice so you can check it out.  I promise:  no SPAM and I won't share your email address with anyone.  Look at the top right side of the page to subscribe.  

Follow me on Instagram:  @tracoleman99

Friday, February 5, 2016

How to Enjoy the Big Game Guilt Free

Our home is a combination of New York Giants and New England Patriots fans.  Mitch and I make up the latter.  My husband and Joey make up the former.  It makes for an interesting game when they face each other.

Brian, Joey, Mitch and David (Brian's brother) at the November 6, 2011 Giants vs. Patriots game at Gillette Stadium.
After Superbowl XLVI when the Giants defeated the Patriots a second time, the family feud disheartened me.
Superbowl XLVI was exactly four years ago today.
I will always be a Patriots fan at heart.  Even though the Patriots lost the AFC Championship game against the Broncos two weeks ago, I will still watch the Superbowl this weekend, and be able to enjoy it without the pressure of my team winning or losing.  Last year's game was a real nail biter.  Malcolm Butler is my hero:

This will go down in history as one of the best plays of all time!  I remember thinking, "Did that seriously just happen?"

Superbowl is a food fest!  If you are trying to lose weight, how do you enjoy the Superbowl and not go off your diet entirely?  Last year, I did so successfully and was really proud of myself too.  Here's my strategy for getting through the day and some snack food / recipe ideas for game night.

If you are anticipating eating and drinking a lot through the game, make sure you don't starve yourself all day. You want plenty of protein for breakfast and lunch.  I recommend a protein shake or an egg frittata for breakfast, a hearty salad with lots of vegetables and chicken breast for lunch.  For snacks throughout the day, try Greek yogurt, carrot sticks, and grape tomatoes with cottage cheese.  Eat light, but smart before the game.

Protein shake
1/2 C. almond milk
1/2 C. plain Greek yogurt
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
1 Tbsp. baker's cocoa
3-4 ice cubes
Baker's unsweetened cocoa adds just the right amount of chocolate flavoring without the sugar.  It's only 10 calories and makes my chocolate protein shake taste 100% better.
(I have lots of ways to make my protein shake, but this is my favorite and is lowest on carbs.  Anticipating a carb-rich game night, I want to go light on carbs for the day.)

(230 calories, 3.3 g fat, 16.5 g carbohydrates, 41.5 g protein)

Egg Frittata
1-2 eggs (your choice), beaten
1/2 C egg whites (I use Egg Beaters)
1/2 C steamed, chopped broccoli
1/2 C steamed, chopped spinach

Combine all ingredients together.
Preheat your pan on Medium.  Spray with Pam or other cooking spray (if you have an olive oil sprayer, that's best).  Pour your egg mixture into the pan.  Cook for a few minutes until  you are able to flip your frittata over to cook your eggs on both sides.  You can just cook it through until the top of the eggs is solid, but I prefer to flip them.  Sometimes it flips beautifully and sometimes it's a little messy, but I'm the one eating it and I don't care if it's pretty or not, as long as it tastes good.

You can use other vegetables too.  Try onions, peppers, mushrooms, zucchini, tomatoes or your favorite veggie.  

(With two eggs:  267 calories, 10.3 g fat, 7.7 g carbohydrates, 31.8 g protein)

Game Night Snacks and Meal Options

So, you want to ENJOY yourself on game night, but you don't have to completely blow it.  Believe it or not, there are a lot of healthy options for both meals and snack options.  Skip dessert and focus on the rest.

Appetizer / Snack Ideas

Hummus Dip with Pretzels or vegetables

Hummus is essentially just chickpeas with tahini (a sesame seed paste) and a variety of seasonings.  If you're like me, you buy yours at the store.  It's relatively cheap and saves me time.  However, it is super easy to make and you can control the ingredients that way.  Just google "how to make hummus" and you'll be well on your way.

Buffalo Chicken Dip

This recipe first appeared on Last Minute Recipes
2 chicken breasts*, cooked and shredded
1 8 oz. packages of cream cheese
1/2 C Ranch dressing
1/2 - 3/4 C Buffalo sauce (I used Frank's Red Hot Wings Buffalo sauce)
1 C Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
1 package (bag) multi-grain Tostitos Scoop tortilla chips, crackers or carrots and celery sticks

*You can use canned chicken OR roasted / rotisserie chicken from Costco or your local grocers store.  It's up to you.  I just put some chicken breasts into the oven.

Tip:  Use low fat cream cheese or Neufchatel cheese instead of the full fat variety.  Use light ranch dressing OR try plain Greek yogurt with ranch seasonings.

Substitute Blue cheese dressing for Ranch dressing
If using Blue cheese dressing, substitute 4 oz. Blue cheese crumbles for the Jack cheese

Heat oven to 350F.  Mix cream cheese and Ranch dressing together.  Add Buffalo sauce.  Pour into a 1 quart baking dish (or pie plate), stir in chicken and Jack cheese.  Bake 30 minutes, or until bubbly.  Serve with tortilla chips, crackers or veggies.

Taco Dip

1 C. plain Greek yogurt
1 C. low fat sour cream
1 jar (15.5 oz.) salsa - mild, medium or hot - you pick
1 pkg. taco seasonings (or use your own taco seasonings)

Combine yogurt, sour cream and salsa.  Stir.  Add taco seasonings to taste.  I don't mix the entire package into the dip.  I add a little bit at a time, slowly.  The dip should not be runny and watery.  If it is, add more sour cream and yogurt.  Let chill for a couple hours before serving.

Serve with vegetables or tortilla chips.  I prefer Tostitos Scoop multigrain tortilla chips, but any variety will work.

Chip Alternatives

In 1983, Lay's Potato Chips launched their ad, "No one can eat just one" which has survived the test of time.  This commercial with Kareem al dul Jabar and Larry Bird really makes me laugh:

Potato chips.  No matter how you serve them, they are hard to resist.  Full of sodium and fat, they are super addictive, so it's a good idea to skip them entirely during this week's game.  Instead, opt for lots of vegetables with healthy dip options.  If you really need the salty, crunch option, try some soy crisps for a change:
Nutritional Info:  One serving (28 g/ 21 crisps) has 120 calories, 3 g fat, 15 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber and 8 g protein.
One serving of Lay's potato chips (28 g/ 15 chips) has 160 calories, 10 g fat, 15 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber and 2 g protein.
The Main Event

So, what is being served at this year's Superbowl Party?  Instead of pizza and grinders, try Chili or Taco Salad.

If you drain the excess fat, chili is super healthy, being high in both protein and fiber (thanks to the beans).  Substitute Greek yogurt for sour cream and opt out for the shredded cheddar cheese.  There's no need to post a recipe here.  Chili is easy to make, you just need ground beef or turkey, an onion, kidney beans, crushed tomatoes and seasonings.  Check online for different recipes.

Taco Salad
I love taco salad.  In fact, it is by far my favorite way to eat salad.  We eat it at least once / month.  I don't have a recipe for taco salad.  I just throw it together with whatever I have on hand.
I keep the shredded cheese and chips on the side.  That way those who want cheese can put on as much as they want and the chips don't get soggy.
Ingredient Suggestions:
1 - 2 lbs. Ground turkey or beef, browned with fat drained
1 chopped onion, sauteed with meat (I skip this, not an onion fan)
Taco seasonings (either a package or your own preference), added to the meat (you might need to add a few drops of water to blend the seasonings in)
salad greens and / or lettuce:  LOTS of it
cilantro (optional, I don't use it)
1 can black beans, drained (or try refried black beans for a change)
1-2 Haas Avocado - peel and cut into pieces (you don't want to chop it up or it can become more like guacamole
tomatoes:  either lots of grape tomatoes, cut in half or whole tomatoes cut up
cucumber:  peeled and sliced
black olives:  either whole or sliced
corn (optional)
Shredded cheddar or Mexican cheese

Serve with Tostitos multi-grain Scoops.

Salad Dressing options:  light Italian or Ken's light Catalina dressing, or mix the two together.  Try adding Taco Sauce to your dressing to cut the calories in half.

This salad is very eye appealing.  Just put the greens on the bottom of your bowl / serving platter. Top with meat.  Add remaining ingredients around the entire salad.  The bright colors make you want to eat it up.  I leave the chips on the side.  My family typically crushes the chips over the salad and eats it that way.

What to drink?

LOTS of water all day long!  If you like to drink alcohol, be conservative and smart about it.

My husband says, "Life is too short for light beer."  So, enjoy your beer, but limit its consumption to one or two bottles.

To me, Superbowl Sunday is not a wine drinking kind of day.  I like wine, but it doesn't float my boat on Superbowl Sunday.  If it does yours, opt for a drier red wine and sip slowly throughout the night.

Hard Alcohol?
Try vodka with soda water and a wedge of lemon or lime.  (Only 64 calories for one shot of vodka and 0 carbs.)

If you really like to party on game night, be smart about your consumption.  Drink at least 8 oz. water in between every alcoholic drink.  Don't drive!!!

Questions for you:
(Answer in the comment section below.)

Are you planning to watch the Big Game?  Who are you cheering for?  What are you planning to eat?

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