Tag Archives: Visalus

Angela's 1st Challenge

Weight Loss Success Story – Angela Jacks

I am so excited to share with you my childhood school friend bestie Angela Jacks’s before and after picture from her 1st 90 day challenge!!!!!!!! She is down 24lbs and CRUSHED it!!!!!!Here are a few tips from her Challenge: 

Which challenge kit did you use?The shape kitWhat is your favorite recipe?
My favorite recipe is banana pudding -1 cup almond milk, 1 tsp of sugar free french vanilla pudding powder, 2 scoops of shake mix, and a frozen banana. Blend and drink.

Do you exercise? If so, what type of exercise do you enjoy?
I did not exercise any other than keeping up with my two girls with school, dance and cheer.

What do you eat on an average day on program? What are some of your favorite foods that keep you on track?
I do not keep track of my foods or calories. I just do not eat anything fried and try to keep it to salads, grilled meats and veggies, or soups.

Which of your personal goals have you achieved? Weight loss/how much? 
My goal was to lose 15-20 pounds and I lost 24. I lost 15 inches, a shirt size, and two pants sizes.

What is your next 90 Day Challenge goal? 
My next goal is to lose 10 more pounds and do the Insanity workout program.

I am so proud of you for joining the Challenge girl!!!! You are going to be a motivation and inspiration to SOOO many people!!!! :) ♥ ya!!!! :)
Carman & Kristen

Trader Joe’s Almond Butter

Today I figured out a new snack combo that is gonna now forever gonna be an addiction and a problem having it in the house!!!!!

My friend Kristen -one of my sweet and awesome military friends who I love, adore and miss terribly – graciously gave me a jar of Trader Joe’s Creamy Almond Butter to try when I stopped by for a visit when we were in Baltimore for FitBloggin’.

*I love it when I have friends where – we can not talk on the phone for years but when we see each other again its like we can pick right up where we left off!!!  Love you girl!! :)

(man!! you can tell how exhausted I was at the end of our trip in Baltimore!! :) Kristen is one FIT HAWT mama!!)


What I figured out is when I pair this awesome almond butter with a serving of these sourdough pretzels that I found at Sam’s Club – it is a TO DIE FOR combo!!!!!!  Perfect blend of creamy, sweet, salty and hearty!! Seriously sooooo GOOD.

My MOST favorite thing about this almond butter besides the taste……the ingredient list:

How many things do you ever find in a JAR that has only 1 ingredient on the list????  Love that.

Thankfully now we have a Trader Joe’s near downtown Houston. I will have to add that place to my list to pick up awesome yummy stuff like this when I’m in that part of town.  :)

Do you shop at Trader Joe’s?? If so what are your favorite food finds there?? 


Wednesday Fire Bites:

Breakfast – yummy Vi Shake with the Chocolate mix in and my AM Vi-Pak

Snack – pretzels and almond butter  (TWICE today)  :/

Lunch – Quick and Easy  – spaghetti squash, 1/4 cup poblano alfredo sauce, browned & seasoned turkey patty, topped with pico de gallo

Snack – warm Nutra Cookie – seriouslyyyyy SO good!

Dinner – bites of King Ranch Chicken casserole on the way out the door to YW’s church meeting / banana in the car on the way

2nd dinner? when I got home :) – yummy strawberry Vi Shake


My Tips on How I Plan to Get Back on Track & Get Serious

I am no kiddin’ starting back today getting back to the basics of the healthy habits that I have been slacking off of for a while now. I’ve decided I need to get back to religiously tracking with my dietSNAPS app, measuring out serving sizes, counting the WW’s PointsPlus of my meals again and being held accountable by posting HERE every day!!!!! :)

I’m starting to feel just *a little* out of control. I’m trying to focus on my new 90 Day Challenge goal of dropping bodyfat % and getting leaner but since I’ve been maintaing for over a year now (that’s an accomplishment in itself!!)  it has been SUPER hard to get serious and refocused on this new goal and journey!!! I haven’t been able to commit 100% on my new goal because I haven’t been consistent with my normal daily healthy habits like I was before. So I now feel like I need to really concentrate on the baby steps and healthy habits to move forward.

I came across this post of mine from back in March of this year of my 1 year anniversary with Weight Watchers and using the dietSNAPS app.  Sometimes we have to look back on what we did before to be successful and go back to doing those things that we may not be doing as well now. :)

Just FYI – this week is gonna be a getting-back-on-track painful week. I am gonna have to ‘OWN’ every BLT (Bite, Lick, & Taste). My favorite WW Leader Karen always says “If you BITE it WRITE it. If you DRINK it INK it.” Tracking it sooo important!!! I will  start taking a picture of it all to see the big picture so I can start establishing the habits I need to again. Its part of the ‘process’ of getting back to feeling awesome again like I did before when I was in more control, making better choices, and seeing results.  So I’m just warning you now…….some of the days ahead may not be too purdy!!! :)


My dietSNAPS Fire Bites today:

Breakfast – Vi-shake with almond/coconut milk and 1/2 frozen banana with AM Vi-Pak -3pts+
Snack – 2 eggs and 1/3 cup oatmeal with brown sugar & cinnamon and a scoop of Vi-shake stirred in…seriously SO good!! – 8pts+
Late Lunch- protein waffle (with a scoop of Vi-shake mix–again SO GOOD!) with banana and Redi-whip and drizzle of honey – 7pts+
Mid afternoon – dark chocolate cooca almonds while dinner was cooking. Then really started to get hungry and had some dark chocolate covered almonds. 6pts+
Dinner – Porcupine Meatballs with spaghetti squash and green beans – guesstimated 5pts+
(SUPER good!!! will post recipe soon!)
Total 29pts+

Frametastic app

I’m sure I will be thinking of more habits that I need to be doing again as the week goes on. I will mention them in my posts so maybe it will be something you need to hear and work on as well. :)


What do you do to get back on track and refocused when you have a new goal??


Some favorite thoughts I’ve come across recently…….



Tough Mudder Fun

We Did the Tough Mudder!!!

I am sooo happy to report that we completed AND survived the TOUGH MUDDER in Austin!!!! It was SO much fun and yet so HARD at the same time. (I’m still not sure how its possible?!!) For those not familiar with what exactly a TM is…..check out the video here – www.toughmudder.com. Yeah – it was C.R.A.Z.Y. :)

at 12 miles with 1 obstacle left and still SMILING!!!!!

It was also such an AMAZING experience doing it together with some of my FAVORITE peeps that I love dearly- my brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law.  It was an awesome bonding and teamwork experience that I will cherish forever!! :)

During the event, it really had me reflecting on life and how it can be used as a metaphor for everything we do in life. Here are a few:

  • There are times when we have to go through things on our own…..
  • There are times we need the help of others – especially our family and friends – to help us get through our obstacles/trials in life – to help boost us over those 15ft walls or help pull us up when we are down or help each other get to the top of those 4 story high hay bales
  • There are times we have to go through our “obstacles” on our own but we can do it! We sometimes have to go through it slowly and carefully – I had this thought on the Mud Mile where it was nothing but slick mucky mud trenches up and down muddy hills. Sometimes we just have to focus on putting one foot in front of the other and watch those going ahead of us and literally following in their footsteps.
  • We always have those that love us on the sidelines cheering us on every step of the way
  • When we are going through hard things – like the dang electric eel – we have our loved ones there at the end to waiting on us and to help laugh it off and help you keep going!  (here’s a video to give you an idea! It got me every time I moved across the entire thing  and I was yelping just like these guys) :'(

It was by far one of the hardest but most fun events I have done to date….right up there with completing a full marathon a few years ago. I pulled up my 2012 New Years Resolutions again from our post in January to re-evaluate this year so far…….{!!are we seriously already in October????!!}………I was so happy to be able to check one off. I hadn’t picked a race yet when I made this goal – little did I know with my friend Dack approaching me in April/May about joining their Tough Mudder team what fun would be in store!! :)

Mormon Mudders!!!!! :)  These guys were SO MUCH FUN to train with!!!!!

My goal earlier this year was:

I would say running a 12 mile course with 22 obstacles counts as checking that one off my New Years goals AND my Live List!!! :) :)

Here’s a little video of us running through the LAST and DREADED obstacle – Electro Shock….with random wires hot of up to 10,000 volts!!!!

You can see Keller about :15 into it and we are right behind him :)


Here’s a little video I put together on our way home that night.


Here’s another video I made on the way out to Austin about my trip down memory lane when picking out which of my favorite Brooks running shoes to wear- we have run A LOT of miles together. :)


Have you pulled out your New Years Resolutions and looked at them again to see what you have accomplished and checked off so far??  

I will be looking mine over again to see what else I have checked off – or am close to checking off. It sure feels awesome to accomplish goals you set out to do!

Keep Calm & Cowgirl Up

Return of the Routine

It is mid-week of the first week back to school and the new 4am wake up call is starting to catch up with me!! I found myself having to dragggggg my hinney outta bed this morning.  I am having to take a power nap each afternoon to get through the rest of the evening. I am normally not a nap person – I always feel guilty because I have such a scroll list of things to get done, but I almost cannot function by dinner time and since I’m single momming it this week I have way less patience with my kids if I don’t get a power nap in.

Yesterday I had 2 thoughts about the pains of getting back into a routine. I LOVE a daily routine and schedule because my life flows so much better and is much more peaceful. Its the PAINFUL process of getting back in the groove that will sometimes leave us wondering ‘what the heck am I doing?!’  It is no doubt a painful process and my first thought to myself was  ‘You just have to put your head down and push through it’. We HAVE to force ourselves to push through it  – to change – because we know what’s on the other side.  My second thought is my favorite, especially when I’m so tired or frustrated,  the 4am alarm is kicking my butt,  I’m fighting the cranky kids, and having to constantly remind them of what they need to be doing next………..

image source

Nuff said!! :)

Oh – and my last favorite reminder is:

image source


I came across this awesome article called Return of the Routine with tips on getting back into a routine. Here are 5 steps suggested:

I was so happy to see that number 1 is REST!!! I am glad that I am allowing myself more time to rest and just taking baby steps with what I still have to do for work, organize my house, blogging, cleaning and just all my to-do’s. :) We have to take baby steps (like my favorite FlyLady routines) or we will get too overwhelmed too quickly.

I love this quote and it really put it in perspective for me –

“Rest, Mama. Rest a little longer than you need to. Still that nervous tick which makes you get up to clean the closet, or order the books, or put away shoes left out in the hall. Instead, when you awake each morning this week, notice the dance of green leaves outside your window, the small sounds of your children over breakfast, the rope of muscle cascading down your husband’s forearm, the warmth of a chuckle deep in his throat, and the feel of your bare feet on the floor. Savor your first cup like you have all the time of a lifetime. Let the flavor of your fresh fruit charge your senses. Listen to the music around you. Can you feel it? This is the sweetness of home.”

I love reminders like these to always be paying attention to our surroundings – especially in our homes. When we don’t we miss soooo many of the little things from our children. I know I am guilty of that. Its something I work on daily because with each passing day I have to remind myself that my children only have one childhood…..and these children in my house ‘won’t be like this for long’ (one of my favorite country songs!)  Will try not to cry now!!! :)


Tuesday’s Fire Bites: 
Workout – too short of  a track run 
Breakfast – green Vi-shake on the way to take my daughter to Seminary
Snack – Zone bar
2nd Snack – Nutra Cookie
Lunch – Zip & Steamed (love these bags!!) tilapia with my favorite Old Bay seasonings and a side of butternut squash fries
Snack – banana
Dinner – green Vi-shake 
Dessert after a YW leadership meeting at church – lemonade pie (gotta work on that willpower cause I seems to have none right now!! :)) 
Late Snack -fried eggs
*been SUPER snackie still! :( 


Wednesday’s Fire Bites:
Breakfast – Blueberry and frozen banana Vi-shake 
Snack – Nutra cookie and apples with cinnamon
Lunch- Strawberry Cheesecake Vi-shake
Snack -Nutra cookie
Dinner not pictured – Pancakes in pajamas at our YW activity night :) 
Snack – When we got home Gabe started making his own shake so I blended it up for him and we split it :)