postpartum

Fit As A Mother (the series) - Board Books

Hey there,

Do you have a ton of board books laying around....well, pretty much EVERYwhere?! 

Yup!  Me too!

Besides reading them (duh!), I wondered what else I could do with these wonderful little collections of silly words and imagination.

Enter: The Fit As A Mother series.  :-)  

Try this workout!  Aim for 12 reps of each exercise; 3 circuits in total for a quick and effective full-body workout in the comfort of your home!

  1. Side lunges
  2. Reverse Lunges with a Front Slide
  3. Mountain Climbers

In good health,

Tara

What the heck does my one-on-one coaching do?

Hello inter-web friends!

Two nights ago I attended an amazing event to raise money for research into natural cancer cures.  This event was to celebrate the Iron Moms that were nominated here on Long Island, NY.  I discovered what an Iron Mom is - a woman that puts health, nutrition, and fitness at the top of the priority list for herself, her family, and her community.  An Iron Mom gives back, volunteers, and feels lit up about the tireless work she's tackling to make a difference.  An Iron Mom often has overcome adversity, health struggles, and has seen the light of day.  It was a massive honor to be in the company of such amazing women.  If you were there, you know what I mean.  

In preparation for my speech, I was taking a little inventory on what it is I actually do day in and day out.  And I realized...that I have NEVER shared a sneak peak into my private one-on-one coaching program, Pioneer Nutrition and Fitness Coaching.  Hmm.  Well, I'm changing that today! You should know I can help you.  You should know I work virtually, so geographic location is not a barrier for us working together.  You should also know that each and every one of my clients is a partner of mine - a partner in our journey towards the healthiest, happiest, most confident version of themselves.  

Watch the video for more details and recent results from current clients.

I can help you break the dieting cycle.  Shoot me a note here if you have any questions.

What are YOUR big rocks?

Are you mopping the floor when your house is on fire?

Are you chewing gum for the extra calorie burn, but then chugging down a Venti Frap on your way home from work?

Watch this #WonderWednesday LIVE video to see what the heck I'm talking about…and help figure out where to start with your weight loss and health goals.

Then, come back and drop a comment.  Tell me, what is one of YOUR big rocks?

In good health,

Tara

P.S. It's subtle, but around a minute or so in, I shoo away a neighbor so I can keep talking to you guys!  :-O  Oops.  At least I'm passionate!  Haha.

FREE Webinar!

In just 3 days, I am hosting a FREE webinar - The truth about calorie-counting and what you can do instead.

This live event is for you is you find yourself jumping from diet to diet, have ever tried to count your calories or macros, or would like to learn more about your metabolism and a better way to manage portions without making you want to pull your hair out.

Is this you?  Join the group now so you're all set to pop in and catch the webinar!  If you can't make it live, the replay will be available in this group as well.

Can't wait to see you there!

In good health,

Tara

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Quality PLUS Quantity for healthy fat loss

Hey there! 

[Thanks for rolling with the kiddos interrupting my live video!]  :-P  

Food quality PLUS food quantity is the secret sauce for healthy fat loss.

I'm NOT a believer in counting calories - at least not over the long-term.  I believe, in general, we could benefit from less stress surrounding food choices and body image.  However, it IS true that if you take in more energy (calories) than your body uses, you will gain weight.

Quality of nutrition is SUPER important!  Less chemicals and additives; more real & whole food.  That's what truly nourishes our bodies.

So, if you're looking for both HEALTH and FAT LOSS, the key comes from eating high quality foods in appropriate portion sizes for your body / activity level / hormones.

This is one of the topics that is customized specifically for you in my online program - Pioneer Nutrition & Fitness Coaching.  It is a 12-month program, with the option of committing to just the first 3 or 6 months if you're a get-my-toes-wet-first type of person.  

Instead of trying every single year to lose the fat, this program takes one year and since it's done in a lifestyle-changing & sustainable way, you'll have to find some new thing to obsess over every year for your New Years' resolution.  ;-)

Intrigued?  Ready to dive in?  Here's the link. 

In good health,

Tara

Caring for your body post-baby and beyond!

I couldn't bring you all to the Blossom Baby Expo this past weekend here on Long Island, so at the last-minute suggestion of my hubby, I recorded my presentation LIVE to bring to YOU!  ;-)

We spoke about nutrition, fitness, sleep, support, and stress - specifically targeted for postpartum women, but these tips will help anyone!  I stopped the video before the Q&A started, for the privacy of our awesome mamas.

Please share this with any of your pregnant or postpartum friends.  This time in your / their lives is simultaneously the most important and yet the most challenging time to turn inward and take care of your own body.  It can be done!  Watch to learn more.

In good health,

Tara

Cake Smash Success! (Jagger Turns ONE)

Well how did THAT happen?  365 days and boom...Jagger-dude is 1 year old.  

He is the most perfect compliment to our crazy family.  His smiles and laughs make strangers smile and laugh everywhere we go.  He loves to be silly and mobile and hi big sister - well, he's a BIG fan of hers.

Some of you already know that our babies came with a little (lot of) help from science.  They were IVF miracles.  They also each survived a terrible pregnancy disease I had both times called Hyperemesis Gravidarum.  All this just to say, we are so. incredibly. BLESSED!

I believe we can find reason in everything we experience.  "If it doesn't kill you, it makes you stronger." (One of my favorite quotes since I was a kid - from Nietzsche).  Our experiences have brought me to where I am today…I value my family and our health above all else.  I know what it's like to long for each of these.

Well, hello there!  (Jagger-dude - a few months old)

Well, hello there!  (Jagger-dude - a few months old)

To my sweet Jagger Jack, Happy 1st birthday!  We knew we loved you long before you joined us Earth-side.  You've been such a bright star in our lives over the past year.  I have loved every minute of our 365 days together - watching you grow, play, and learn.  I can't wait for more todays and tomorrows with you!

Babywearing has saved me this year!  Having free hands to chase after big sis is always a good idea.

Babywearing has saved me this year!  Having free hands to chase after big sis is always a good idea.

Now on to parties and cake smashes.  Here's what I learned:

  1. January birthday parties in NY need snow dates as a back-up plan.
  2. Using blueberries to color the icing actually makes purple icing, not blue.  Jagger is a very secure little dude, he doesn't mind purple….but, it didn't quite fit into the "Winter One-derland" theme that we were going for.  ;-)
  3. Sometimes the "cake smash" turns out to be more of a cake fondle.  And that's cool!  He enjoyed it, and that's all I was hoping for.
We may have had to reschedule Jagger's party, but at least we got an unexpected day to play in the fluffy white stuff!

We may have had to reschedule Jagger's party, but at least we got an unexpected day to play in the fluffy white stuff!

I started feeling pretty nostalgic as I made this recipe - the same one I created originally for Magnolia's first birthday.  I was a newbie to healthy baking, at that time, and ended up making about 7-10 versions of this one before it was "right".  That was wayyy back in 2014.  ;-)  I've come a long way!  Now I have TWO adorable reasons to keep me on top of my healthy baking (and cooking) game.

Magnolia enjoying her smash cupcake 2+ years ago at her 1st birthday party.  It's incredibly bittersweet to see how much she's grown in body and mind and how fast our memories are piling up as the months fly by.

Magnolia enjoying her smash cupcake 2+ years ago at her 1st birthday party.  It's incredibly bittersweet to see how much she's grown in body and mind and how fast our memories are piling up as the months fly by.

This was also the start of the muffin magic.  What the heck is that muffin magic, you ask?  Well, it's figuring out that muffins can be made of all the healthy stuff you want your kiddos and your whole family to eat!  We're talking veggies, fruit, protein, healthy fats, and fiber.  I don't hide anything in there as I believe it's in the kiddos' best interest to know they are eating veggies and all the good stuff to give them the best foundation of health that you can.  So grab the little ones and let them help measure and mix and get very familiar with these healthy ingredients!

*Note: This recipe is for muffins.  Add the icing and voila - you have cupcakes!

Pumpkin Batter all mixed and ready for the muffin pan.

Pumpkin Batter all mixed and ready for the muffin pan.

"Happy birthday to you…"   

"Happy birthday to you…"

 

 

Pumpkin Carrot Muffins

Ingredients:

  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1.5 cups pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup sliced carrots (optional)
  • 1 T coconut oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1.5 cups almond flour
  • 1/5 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Blend together all wet ingredients in a blender.
  3. In a large bowl, mix together dry ingredients.
  4. Slowly pour wet ingredients from blender into the bowl with the dry ingredients.
  5. Fill greased muffin pan (or muffins liners) 2/3 full.
  6. Bake 30 minutes.

*Makes 12 muffins.

"Is the goal to shove as much of this in my mouth as possible, mama?  'Cause that I can do!"   

"Is the goal to shove as much of this in my mouth as possible, mama?  'Cause that I can do!"

 

I switched up the kind of icing I made this time, as I wanted a nice shade of blue to go with our "Winter One-derland" theme.  Hmm.  That didn't work out, but it was a very pretty purple color. Haha.  And it was tasty!

Blueberry Coconut Cream Icing

Ingredients:

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 2 T coconut oil (not melted)
  • 1 T raw honey
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries

Directions:

  1. Place can of coconut milk upside down in fridge overnight.
  2. Carefully open can and scoop out the hardened coconut cream.  This is what you will be using for the icing.  Save the watery part to use in other recipes.
  3. Mix all ingredients in a blender (you will need to keep scraping down the sides and blending several times).
  4. If you make in advance, it's ok to refrigerate icing, just be sure to give it a good blend/whipping before you use as it will harden a bit.

 

Jagger seems as surprised as we are that he's ONE already!

Jagger seems as surprised as we are that he's ONE already!

Baby (Jagger) Bicep Curl-Shoulder Press

Have you ever seen a woman in jeans and a sweater doing an arm workout with a 20-ish pound baby as her weight?  Can't say "no" to that anymore!  ;-)

When you work primarily from home with a toddler and baby in-tow, you learn to be ok with getting ready either in 30 seconds or spreading it out over the course of the whole day - dressed now, makeup later, hair…eh. 

So what does this mean?  WelI for one, I got out last night.  Woo hoo!  But, it also meant I was clad in my best sweater-over-tank-top-for-easy-breastfeeding and ripped jeans before we got to shoot this demo video.  And yes, it's totally "we", because let's face it…Magnolia and Jagger steal the show.  ;-)

This bicep curl-shoulder press is a great way to work your upper body in one exercise.  The babies enjoy it too!

*Note: Please look out for low ceilings!  Grab those babies tight and only do this move if your little kiddo has complete head and neck control.  Alternatively, use a gallon of milk, a water bottle, or a dumbbell to add resistance.

Do 3 sets of 10 and feel the burn!  Your muscles will thank you.

Baby Skull Crushers

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's….Jagger (all 20 pounds of him) and we're working out together!

Today is part 2 in my GREAT & GRATEFUL series that coincides with Thanksgiving week here in the United States.  As many of you know, I had an incredibly difficult time both with getting pregnant and during my two pregnancies as well.  After multiple rounds of IVF and two pregnancies with Hyperemesis Gravidarum (check out helpher.org for more about this disease), I might be the luckiest person I know to be on the 'other side' with two wonderful, healthy children.  In today's video, I share a brief, fun moment on the kitchen floor with Jagger.  We workout, we laugh, we play.  Magnolia just so happened to be upstairs avoiding her nap when this was shot.  ;-) Today I mention my journey, my babies, the beautiful life of joy and health we can now share together.  GREAT & GRATEFUL!

Try these at home with the nearest baby, toddler, or gallon of water you have for a good triceps burn.  **Please note: no skulls were actually crushed in the making of this video!  It's a weird name for an exercise, right?

In health and gratitude,

Tara

There's HOW much sugar in my soda?!?!

Ugh.  Alrighty, sorry for the spoiler.  If you are amongst the many millions of people that still drink soda on a regular basis, pay attention.  And if you've kicked that habit long ago, I still want you to watch this video so you can become an anti-soda ambassador for your friends and family.  :-D

In this video, I show you - teaspoon by teaspoon - how much of the white stuff is actually in one serving of this particular ginger ale.  It's frightening!

Let's talk about something real quick that the giants in the food industry try to keep secret from us - the "bliss point".  This is a chemically created "magic point" of sorts that results from a combination of sugar, salt, and/or unhealthy fat that turns on the pleasure sensors in our brain the same way cocaine does.  This bliss point is actively sought out by the chemists that CREATE food-stuff in a lab.  It leaves us with intense cravings and addiction to these products.  Not cool!  And guess what?  The more you consume, the greater the sugar, salt, and/or unhealthy fats are needed to achieve the same "high".  Doesn't this sound a whole lot like substance abuse?  Unfortunately, it IS a very similar process.  Here's the caveat… our bodies are really amazing and can buffer a lot of damage we do to it for quite some time.  I know this sounds like a good thing, but think about it this way - you can be doing a ton of harm to your organs, digestive system, brain, cells, etc. and not know until wayyyy later in life.

If you have been diagnosed with Diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, hormonal imbalances, an auto-immune disease, or anything else that you consider to be your 'wake-up call', there's a silver lining.  Your body just does not want to let you get away with too much damage.  Your body is asking for you to clean up your act earlier on.  That's great news!

Watch this video and please let me know where you stand, currently, with your soda consumption.  I want to be the catalyst for you to hold yourself accountable.  I promise I won't be too harsh.  In fact, I believe in very small and sustainable changes over time for lasting results.  So don't give up your Coke cold-turkey (unless you feel confident that you can).  Instead, how about ONE less soda THIS week?  Drop me a comment or email and let me help you.  :-)

Now, brace yourself for this… ONE serving of soda equals HOW much sugar?!?!? ...

Pumpkin Workout

It's November 3rd.  You have pumpkins still out on the stoop in a Halloween-hangover of sorts.  You could throw them out (why?!?!), cook with them, donate them...

…But first, you should get a KILLER workout in (or 2 or 3) before you and your Orange Balls of Autumn-ness part ways.

In this 2.5 minute video (come on now, guys - you do have 2.5 minutes, right?), I show you 3 simple exercises you can do RIGHT NOW to get that blood pumping and endorphins bathing your brain and body.  Don't confuse simple with easy.  Do three sets of these 3 exercises for a QUICK and POWERFUL jolt of energy (and health and toned muscles…blah, blah).  ;-)

Ready?  3….2….1….press play!

Sleep-deprived and Staying Healthy

It's no secret that sleep has been a scarcity around here for….well, quite some time!  As a breastfeeding mama, I'm "on call" every night - and that usually ends up being at least 5 or 10 night-time wakings (and feedings).  :-O  Yup, that wasn't a typo.  

My daughter was the same way, so I'm sort of immune to how ridiculous this actually sounds.  It's a path I'm more than happy to continue on until things happen to change organically.  I'm not looking to sleep-train, cut him off from night feedings, ask my husband to give him a bottle in the middle of the night, or anything else really.  No judgement to anyone else - this is just our choice.  It's actually quite a sweet set-up - Jagger sleeps in our room and he has this adorable way of simultaneously kicking and punching me when he's ready to nurse.  I swear it's much cuter than it sounds!  There's usually no crying involved, just a gentle "Mom, I need you now please" type of nudge.  At 9 months in, we've definitely gotten into a groove.

Magnolia is now almost 3 years old and those early co-sleeping and breastfeeding days with her are just beautiful memories now.  I know all-too-well how quickly the weeks slip by, even as each night may seem to last forever.  

With our days totally filled with Magnolia's stories, songs, activities, and boisterousness, I'm a-okay letting the wee hours of the night be reserved for one-on-one time with Jagger.  The snuggles and sweet baby breath will be gone before I can say, "Sleep, child!".  ;-)

So where does that leave me with my health and productivity?  There's this whole work thing, house thing, wife thing….Well, I have my moments of dragging and clawing my way through each hour, for sure!  However, I do like to think that a few of my good habits are responsible for keeping me as healthy and energetic as possible during this extended period of barely-any-sleep (and REM?  Do I ever get into REM?!).  I am typically rather fast-moving (that type A curse), happy, and feeling good and strong.

I started to record this video, as usual, without Jagger at first.  But, my storage space ran out on my phone about 30 seconds in and after taking time to make more space on this device, Little Man was ready to join me.  Perfecto!  After all, the lack of sleep is just a liiiiiiiittle bit about him anyway.

'Til next time...

In health,

Tara

Glute Bridges

Are you looking to strengthen your pelvic floor and core?  Have you had diastasis recti (that painless separation of abdominal muscles causing a belly bulge) from previous pregnancies?  Or, do you have some lower back pain that you're looking to rehab?

The Glute Bridge is a perfect, gentle-yet-effective exercise you can do in the comfort of your home with no equipment.  Watch me demonstrate it next to a very awake, Jagger-dude.  

As you lift your leg high into the air, concentrate on rolling your vertebrae off the floor one at a time as well as returning contact with the floor one vertebrae at a time.

If you find this helpful, please share with your friends and family!  And, if you'd like more of these videos, drop a comment or an email and tell me what you'd like to see more of.  I'm here to help you.  Yup - YOU!  ;-)