How To Gain The Motivation To Succeed On Your Weight Loss Journey

When you make the firm decision to commence a weight loss program and determine the method, you feel like a million bucks. You know you are doing something amazing for yourself and naturally, that goal certainly seems within reach, but after about a month of dieting and exercise, your reserve seems to be waning and the commitment possibly wavering. You aren’t alone. It happens to the most devoted dieter.

So don’t get discouraged. Here are some tips on how to lose weight and not lose your resolve:

Don’t hop on the scale every day: This can be difficult, especially in the early stages when the pounds tend to be shed at a fairly quick rate, but it can also be very discouraging. Why? Because a woman’s weight fluctuates on a daily basis due to water retention and hormone levels. You might be disheartened when you think you’ve gained a few pounds and actually have not. Weigh yourself once a week at the same time of day. That way you will obtain more consistent results.

Join a forum online or any type of weight loss or inspirational group:  Whenever you feel like your will is crumbling and you just have to eat a piece of chocolate cake, take to the Internet or go to a meeting with peers who are experiencing the same feelings you are because they are going through the same thing. Their support, encouragement, and acknowledging their shortcomings, will definitely bolster you to continue to reach for your goals.

Switch it up: Another reason why a lot of us tend to hit a brick wall when it comes to our weight loss journey is that we get bored. This is especially the case when it comes to exercising, which is why it is so important to seek variety. There are some many different products on the market today, from road bikes to foam rollers, and so you are bound to find plenty of different sports and workouts you can try without breaking the bank. This will ensure that your motivation levels are kept high at all times.

Keep taking those photographs: Create a photo log of your journey, beginning with the first day you started your program and continuing with an addition each week until you reach your target weight. It’s nearly impossible to see vast differences in your appearance when you look in the mirror every day, but when you have the evidence in front of you and see how great you look, you will vow to trudge on.

There are numerous ways to maintain your motivation level during the days you might not feel so positive about continuing with your diet plan. All you have to do is persevere and with a little bit of help, you will find a whole new you!

12 Recipes for Using Canned Tuna to Get Those Omega-3s

As a breastfeeding mama, I try to keep an eye on my diet as best as possible. I try to limit caffeine, cut down on sugar, eat lots of fruits and vegetables because I know that whatever I eat, my son will receive. Fish contains vital nutrients such as Omega-3 fatty acids, proteins, vitamins and minerals such as iron. Those nutrients help to foster healthy development. The 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that women who are pregnant or nursing eat 8 to 12 ounces a week of a variety of low-mercury seafood.

Tuna is higher in Omega-3s and nutrients that most other fish, but the FDA advises no more than 6 ounces of canned albacore (“white” tuna) a week due to mercury concerns (canned light tuna is okay though). The American Pregnancy Associate recommends the “Safe Catch” brand of tuna as the company undergoes rigorous testing – they screen each wild tuna for their mercury levels.

I never had canned tuna growing up. To be honest, before I started breastfeeding, the most exposure I had to canned tuna was when my mom would buy it as a treat for the cats. Living on the coast and being the granddaughter of a fisherman, our seafood was always freshly caught and prepared. Spoiled, I know. But I’ve learned to enjoy canned tuna over the past few months.

Another company that I use on a regular basis for my salmon and tuna is Vital Choice. They preserve the freshness of their sustainable harvested Alaskan salmon and northwest Pacific seafood by cleaning and flash-freezing it within hours of harvest. The fisheries are certified sustainable by either MSC or the State of Alaska. Vital Choice is also a “B Corp” meaning that they have to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. Use this link and enter “LEANCHOICE” at checkout for 10% off your order!

If you’re looking for recipe inspiration on using canned tuna, you are in luck! I’ve compiled 12 ways to use canned tuna below from some of my favorite bloggers.

Ashley over at Big Flavors from a Tiny Kitchen has a super simple TABLET Sandwich (Tuna, Avocado, Bacon, Lettuce, Egg, Tomato) that she says even her 6 year old enjoys!

Looking for a healthy, gluten free dinner recipe? Check out Sharon’s Roasted Zucchini Tuna Melts at The Honour System.

As a mom of three young children, I know that Samantha of My Kitchen Love understands the need for a quick meal. Her Sustainably Caught – Spicy Tuna Tostadas are a fresh way to use canned tuna.

Denise of My Life Cookbook has an amazing and vibrant Low Carb Tuna Spring Roll Salad that is a great way to fit a rainbow of foods in your diet.

I fell in love with Amy’s Tuna and Potato Cakes. She runs Healthy Little Foodies and so many of her recipes are perfect for baby-led weaning but the whole-family can enjoy them as well.

Artichokes are rich in antioxidants which assist in detoxifying the body and helps to aid constipation and indigestion. I love artichokes but rarely include them in my diet. Patty at The PKP Way has a great way to use canned tuna and artichokes! Check out her Tuna Stuffed Grilled Artichokes.

Craving something with a bit of spice? Jenny at Honey and Birch has a recipe for Jalapeno Tuna Stuffed Tomatoes that is simple to make!

Kalyn at Kalyn’s Kitchen has a Tomato Salad with Avocado, Tuna, Cilantro and Lime that is dairy-free, gluten-free, low-glycemic, Paleo, Whole 30, and South Beach Diet friendly (whew)!

I love Mediterranean flavors. Heidy at McCallum’s Shamrock Patch recently shared a Tuna and Orzo Salad that is packed with great ingredients!

Linda and Christina are a mother and daughter team that run 2 Cookin’ Mamas. They posted a Easy Hot Tuna Dip that would be a perfect recipe when you are looking for something creamy, cheesy, and a little naughty.

This recipe roundup wouldn’t get complete with a recipe for a tuna burger or a tuna noodle casserole, now would it?

Patti from Hearth & Vine has a Tuna Noodle Casserole recipe that is made with a homemade sauce!

Also, make sure you check out Rosemary at An Italian in my Kitchen’s recipe for Healthy Delicious Best Ever Tuna Burgers.

So let’s say that you don’t like fish or are vegan. Sources of omega-3 fatty acids for vegans include:

  • flaxseed oil
  • rapeseed oil
  • soya oil and soya-based foods (like tofu)
  • WALNUTS (my personal favorite)

What is your favorite way to get those omega-3s?

Homestead Winter Prep: Brewing Up Herbal Tinctures *Teaser*

I fell in love with the art of herbalism completely by accident. After I moved back in with my mom, she allowed me space in her garden. I started buying your typical herbs found at area “big box” stores but that wasn’t enough for me. I began looking online for more unique herbs to grow. Eventually my mom told me that I either needed to calm down my spending habits or else find a use for the herbs. So I choose the later option, taking that as the initiative to start my own business. I now sell mostly online and at events local to my area but one product has always remained a favorite of my customers – my handcrafted herbal tinctures.

For the rest of this post, join me over at Minnesota Country Girl where I have the privilege of guest posting for Homestead Winter Prep: A Series of Harvesting & Preserving!

Teething Helpers For Your Baby

Wow. Caleb is 6 1/2 months already. I absolutely cannot believe it. While we think that he started teething back when he was 3 months old, we still haven’t had any teeth break through the surface. Every time I feel around in his mouth though, I wouldn’t be surprised to find a tooth poking out. We’ve been keeping a few items in the fridge to help soothe his gums (and him on these hot summer days) so I thought that I would share a few of our, or rather Caleb’s favorite items to help him through his first teething experience.

Is your little one having issues teething? Check out the Hippie and the Hunter's suggestions for teething helpers!

Wink Naturals Cool Gums Teething Gel 

I picked up this teething gel long before the FDA released its warning in May about teething gels with benzocaine. The Cool Gums Teething Gel is a natural, drug-free formula containing zero numbing agents and it helps soothe tender gums. It has a great flavor to it and Caleb really seems to enjoy it. Sometimes I’ll even put it in the fridge for a little bit to get it a little extra cool. Fun fact: you can also use it on canker sores yourself!

Use “EELLIOTT15” to get 15% off of anything in the Wink Naturals shop!

 

Baby Buddy Silicone Finger Toothbrush

I’ve mentioned this product before but it is too good to not mention again. This is sort of like a starter toothbrush for those first teeth but it doubles as a gum massager to help with sore gums. It’s never too early to start your little one on the right path to good dental hygiene! The finger toothbrush is super easy to use and it almost seemed like a game to Caleb for me to use it. It’s a completely different sensation to have against your gums and I think he found it funny!

Mary & Kate Benny the Bunny Teether Rattle

This wooden rattle is made of European beechwood and is such a fun little rattle to play with. I love the sound of it. It’s durable and safe for babies to chew on. Studies have shown that wood can naturally eliminate even most harmful bacteria like e-coli or salmonella from its surface within minutes, so you don’t need to sterilize some wooden toys. Just rinse them under running water or wipe clean. This rattle was designed Montessori style to stimulate baby’s senses, encourage learning and social skills and promote grasping and fine motor skills development.

Go GaGa Squeeze & Teethe Elephant – Kiki

Finger!

One of Caleb’s favorite things to gnaw on is my finger! Or rather… my knuckle to be more specific. I don’t mind, especially since he doesn’t have any teeth yet. Even better – fingers are free and easily cleaned!

Essential Oil Blend

Yes, there IS an essential oil blend that may help with teething. To 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, add 1 drop of lavender essential oil and 1 drop of roman chamomile essential oil. You’ll want to massage a small amount on the OUTSIDE of your little one’s cheek along the gum line. Again – OUTSIDE. Essential oils are potent and should be treated as such!

What are some of the things that helped your little one when s/he started teething?

 

Oops.

Sometimes the universe has a bigger plan in place! A few months ago, I went back and forth on updating my blog’s name. At the time, I didn’t change it but I recently received notification that The Southern Belle Blogs domain name sold at auction (I think I accidentally listed it months ago).

I’m taking this as a sign to move forward with my new domain – The Hippie and The Hunter!

It should be a pretty smooth transition actually – you, as a reader, won’t see anything, it’ll just be extra work on my end!