Oven Baked Avocado Wedges

avocado wedges

If you are in need of a quick and easy side dish, or you just need to satisfy a desire for salty steak fries…look no further than the glorious Avocado!  It is such a versatile food that can be used in a variety of ways to render different textures.  It is also a favorite of mine because it is extremely nutrient dense, and helps provide highly bio-available potassium. The carbs in the avocado do not seem to raise blood sugar in anyone who tests them…this is likely due to the fat and fiber combo of this food.  Unlike fiber from low fat foods, it doesn’t cause an insulin spike.

My favorite way to enjoy avocado is making these oven baked avocado wedges!  The outside of the wedge becomes crisp and browned, while the inside stays soft.  Season with salt before baking and serve them with your favorite high fat dressing/dip for a complete keto snack!

Ingredients:

  • 100 grams sliced avocado
  • salt
  • 2 Tbsp. dip of choice

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425
  • place your sliced avocado on a lined baking sheet and season to taste
  • bake till turning brown and crisping up
  • serve warm with dip
Nutrition Facts
Servings 1.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 280
Total Fat 28 g
Potassium 512 mg 15 %
Total Carbohydrate 10 g
Dietary Fiber 7 g

Low Carb Cheesy Sticks

fat head new

This is a variation of what is known in the keto/low carb community as “Fat Head” dough, or “Holly Grail” dough.  It is a tried and true low carb dough that is very simple to make, has an awesome texture and keeps really well as leftovers.  Whats not to love!

I’m using a variation of the dough to make cheesy “bread” sticks to serve with Italian pork sausage and marinara for dipping.  Serve it along with a leafy green dinner salad topped with olive oil and you have a perfect meal for Italian night!

fat head 2

 

Full Meal: 59 g fat (78%) 27 g protein (16%) 9 carbs (6%)

Ingredients:

1.5 cups shredded mozzarella

2 Tbsp. cream cheese

3/4 cup almond flour

1 Tbsp psyllium powder (optional)

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp oregano powder

1 egg

Topping:

1/2 cup shredded mozzarella

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

Basil spice (optional)

Dipping:

1/4 cup low carb marinara

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425
  • Place the almond flour, salt, garlic powder, and psyllium in a medium bowl and whisk
  • In a separate microwave safe bowl, melt 1.5 cups of mozzarella, and the cream cheese for 1 min
  • Stir with a silicone spatula till smooth, then add the dry ingredients and the egg
  • Mix really well with a wooden spoon till a thick dough is formed
  • Use greased hands to spread the dough onto parchment, doing your best to make it thin but even (6 servings)
  • Bake for 12 min, then remove from oven, and turn on broiler while you add your Parmesan, remaining mozzarella, and basil to the top of the crust
  • Place back under broiler till cheese is browning up
  • Serve with 1/4 cup low carb marinara, several cups of leafy greens dressed in 1.5 Tbsp. olive oil, and 2-4 oz. Italian sausage meat balls
Nutrition Facts For Dough Alone:
Servings 6.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 255
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 20 g
Total Carbohydrate 5 g
Dietary Fiber 2 g
Sugars 1 g
Protein 17 g 34 %

Easy Keto Candy Fix

mct candy 1

The trick is to focus on long term satisfaction instead of short lived gratification!

You will hear me say this time and time again, because its so true!

We live in a world that profits from constantly tempting you with quick convenience, ultra quick gratification, and cheap indulgence.  But it comes with a greater overall cost:  Your health and wellness over the long term.

You have the choice and the power every day to make good choices.  This does not mean you have to be deprived!!  Its the opposite with keto!

The key to staying on track with your ketogenic lifestyle, is always being prepared and planning ahead. There is essentially no such thing as ketogenic convenience foods…so make your own!

One of my favorite things to keep on hand is a sweet treat like a candy bar.  When you keep your fridge/pantry/freezer stocked with things like this, sugar loaded temptation doesn’t stand a chance.

The biggest perk to this recipe specifically…its almost too easy!  When a treat is loaded with real saturated fat, low in carbs, contains C8 MCT’s from Brain Octane, and uses real ingredients you can enjoy it without losing ketones or feeling the slightest bit guilty.

mct candy

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp. Adams natural peanut butter (smooth)
  • 1 tbsp. cream cheese
  • 1 tbsp. Brain Octane or MCT oil
  • 1 tbsp. butter
  • 1/8 tsp. Now Brand stevia glycerite
  • 32 chocolate chips (Ghiradelli 60% dark)

chipschoc

Directions:

  1. Melt your chocolate chips in a small bowl or mug in the microwave.  Divide this evenly into silicone candy molds or parchment muffin cups using a silicone spatula. Allow to cool a bit while you make the peanut butter filling.
  2. The nutritional information for this recipe is for 4 total servings.  I usually make 8 candies…so its 2 per serving
  3. In a small glass bowl or mug, heat the butter in microwave till melted and hot.  Next, mix in the peanut butter, cream cheese, MCT oil, and stevia still very smooth.  Divide this on top of your chocolate, and place in the freezer to sit up.
Nutrition Facts
Servings 4.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 92
Total Fat 8 g
Total Carbohydrate 5 g 1 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 3 %
Sugars 2 g
Protein 2 g 3 %

 

 

Burn Out Workout ~ LEGS

lbbo

It has been said that when you do a workout…”If your not feeling it now, you won’t feel it tomorrow”… and I believe that to be true.

What does that mean exactly?  Well, in order to make muscles grow, you must first create tiny tears that then rebuild and repair.  This in turn causes muscle tissue to grow larger over time. Feeling sore a day or two after a good workout is a tell tale sign that this process is in fact occurring. So, the best approach to building muscle is to do challenging workouts that allow you to feel the burn, so that you initiate this process.  Incorporating rest days to allow for that rebuild and repair factor is also key.

One of my favorite ways to perform said process, is to do burnout workouts.  They move fast, keep you motivated, and leave the muscle groups you are training completely smoked when you are done.  They are also excellent for depleting glycogen.

Quick Overview of Burn Out Rounds

  • Start with a set number of reps in mind, depending on your fitness level.  I usually start with 8, 10, or even as much as 20 depending on what muscle group I’m working. For the example below, I will do 8.
  • Decide what moves you want to perform
  • Do 8 reps of each move
  • Do a short cardio burst
  • Do 7 reps of each move
  • Do a short cardio burst
  • Do 6 reps of each move
  • Do a short cardio burst
  • Do 5 reps of each move….

You get the point.  Keep this same pattern going until you have reached just 1 rep per move and you are done!  If your not completely smoked by the end of the workout, your not doing enough moves, not enough reps to start out, or you need to add weight.

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Here is an example of a leg day burn out workout I like to do!

Static Lunges on Each Leg with weight or body weight (8 reps per leg)

Plant the feet hips width apart, drop straight down making sure knees don’t go past toes

Squats with weight or body weight (8 reps)

Bend at the hips and drop straight down, making sure kneed do not go over toes, keeping weight in the heels, and keeping weights up by shoulders

Stiff Leg Dead Lift with weight (8 reps)

keep back flat and just a slight bend in knees, hing at hips and go down as far as you can without back rounding, then pull back up slowly, feeling the contraction in your hamstrings and gluts

Sumo Squat with weight (8 reps)

Start with toes pointing out and drop down so legs are parallel to the floor and come back up

Glut Bridge with weight on hips (8 reps)

Use a barbell, or dumbbell with pillow or towel across hips.  Use gluts to push up, pause for a beat, and back down, never releasing the contraction on the gluts at the bottom

Lateral Lunge with weight each side (8 reps)

start with legs out in a solid wide stance, then hinging at the hips, drop the bum down and back as you bend to one side, feeling the contraction on the outer thigh and gluts of the leg you are bending on.  Come back up and repeat on other side.

Calf Raises with weight (8 reps)

Place weights on shoulders and use calfs to pop up onto toes and back down, never fully releasing the contraction on the calfs at the bottom

Cardio Burst: 10 jumping Jacks, 10 Mountain Climbers, 5 Jump Squats

REPEAT DOING 7 REPS of EACH MOVE, THEN 6, Then 5, Then 4, Then 3, Then 2, Then 1

This technique of using descending reps gives you a mental advantage, because you know in your head each round will get progressively easier and shorter, so even though your muscles are fatiguing, you are motivated to keep going down to that 1 last rep.

Doing a workout in this pattern allows you to bust out an impressive 36 reps per move, 80 jumping jacks, 80 mountain climbers, and 40 jump squats without realizing it!  That’s a serious workout.

Just adjust the reps, weight, and type of cardio moves to your own fitness level and switch up the moves to keep it interesting each day, while ensuring you cover all muscle groups. Alternate upper body, lower body, and core each day!

Keto Chocolate Chip Cookies

new keto cookie1

These are the easiest cookies ever!  The texture is perfect, and at 3 total carbs (1 from fiber), they make a guilt free treat you can enjoy any time!

There is a trick to baking with non traditional flours.  Follow these 3 rules and you will have success!!

  1. Low carb flours behave differently than starch based flours. They burn easily!  So, it is important to remove them from the oven in far less time than you would a wheat or starch based flour.  Even if you think they are still looking “raw”… just trust me!  They need to come out when the they have started to flatten out and the very tips of the edges turn just the slightest bit brown.  This usually only takes around 7 minutes or so.  They will continue to cook even after being pulled from the oven as they heat dissipates and they cool.  kookie
  2. Mix your dry ingredients first in a large bowl, and your wet ingredients in a small bowl, and then combine them.  Use an old fashioned hand mixer.
  3. LET THEM COOL OFF.  In all baking, it is important to let the item cool off till it is just barely warm to the touch before eating.  Why?  The ingredients do not register the same on your pallet when they are super hot as they do when cooled off.  Plus, they will fall apart if not allowed to cool and stabilize.

keto os ad

Directions:

Heat oven to 350 and line a baking sheet with parchment

In a large bowl, whisk together these dry ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup erythritol
  • 1/4 cup unflavored Whey Protein
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 cup Blanched Almond Flour
  • 1/4 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 2 tbsp(s), Organic Golden Flax Meal

In a smaller bowl, mix together these wet ingredients:

  • 1 large, Egg
  • 1 tsp, Vanilla Extract
  • 4 tbsp, Butter (softened in microwave)
  • 1 drops (0.16 mL), Stevia Glycerite (optional: taste for sweetness before adding)

Blend the wet with the dry using a hand mixer, then fold in the following:

6 pieces, Dark Chocolate (75% or higher) chopped, or Lilly’s Sugar Free Chocolate, or 1 Chocoprofection bar- the total carb count of your chocolate needs to be 9 grams or less for the nutrition info to be accurate.

Form 12 balls and space evenly on parchment. Bake for close to 7 minutes and allow to cool

new keto cookie2

Nutrition Facts
Servings 12.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 104
Total Fat 9 g
Total Carbohydrate 3 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Sugars 1 g
Protein 4 g

Adam’s Nuggets ~ Dairy Free ~ Grain Free ~ Soy Free ~ Nut Free ~ Egg Free

adam nuggets

One of the main tricks to raising a mostly processed food free family is to make your own convenience foods!  When you take a little time to prep some freezer and fridge staples, you not only save money, but you save your families health!  These “make ahead” turkey or chicken nuggets are super simple to make in large batches and reheat just as easy as any processed store bought variety.  I highly recommend investing in a food saver!  These gadgets really do pay for themselves within a few months!  You can purchase the food saver bags online from Amazon in bulk for cheaper as well.  No need to pay for the expensive name brand bags.  You will be able to preserve your batch meals and snacks with such ease and effectiveness.

My youngest child, Adam, has a neurological disorder (ASD) and he has sensitivities to many common allergens like grains, soy, dairy, nuts, and even eggs!  So, as you can imagine, it can be challenging to find foods a picky kiddo will eat and enjoy.  And if you do happen to find something in the stores that is free of the major allergens…it either costs an arm and a leg or its LOADED with junk starches, preservatives, chemicals and fillers, making it very high glycemic.  Blood sugar spikes aren’t good for anyone, but they are especially problematic for growing kids, and are extremely problematic for kids with any sort of neurological issue. (ASD, ADD, ADHD, Epilepsy, etc.)  I do my best to avoid that problem by coming up with staples both of my kids and my husband will love.

These nuggets are a life saver!  Just a few steps, and you have a freezer stash of quality food containing: almost no carbs or sugar, plenty of healthy fat, plenty of quality protein, and no preservatives save a little sea salt.  Perfect!

adam nuggets 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds ground turkey or chicken
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 2 Tbsp. golden ground flax meal divided
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked or plain paprika
  • 3 Tbsp. Avocado oil (or high heat oil of choice)
  • 1/2 Tbsp. baking powder (if you want to make your own grain free baking powder, use this recipe)

Preheat oven to 375

  • Line a rimmed baking dish (or 2 depending on how big a batch you are making) with parchment
  • In a large bowl, combine the meat, avocado oil, salt, pepper, onion, and garlic powder
  • Add in the coconut flour and 1 Tbsp. of flax meal
  • Use clean hands to mix everything well
  • Form nugget shapes and place on the baking dish (this recipe serves 8…I make 5 nuggets per serving)
  • Bake for about 20-25 min till done
  • While those are baking, mix the baking powder, 1 Tbsp. of flax, and paprika in a small bowl
  • Once the nuggets are done, allow to cool a bit, then coat the nuggets in the flax/baking powder/paprika mix.  This mixture will allow them to crisp up on the out side when you are ready to prepare them
  • Allow to cool completely then transfer to the freezer in airtight container (preferably food saved)!!!

Directions When Ready to Eat:

When ready to eat, just reheat in the microwave or preferably, heat for a bit in microwave first, then crisp up the outside by transferring to a hot skillet with oil or under hot broiler till crisped up!!  Just like with store bought frozen nuggets, the texture is better when baked/fried rather than just microwave, but its up to you!

Servings 8.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 239
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 16 g 25 %
Saturated Fat 3 g 17 %
Monounsaturated Fat 8 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 78 mg 26 %
Sodium 68 mg 3 %
Potassium 269 mg 8 %
Total Carbohydrate 1 g 0 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 3 %
Sugars 0 g
Protein 23 g 46 %

Smokey Salmon Balls with Creole Mustard

 

salmon balls1

Life is better when dinner is super easy to throw together!  Whose with me?!

I love quick, inexpensive, yet super flavorful keto dishes like this…loaded with healthy fats and nutrients.  I have the nutritional breakdown for the just the salmon balls alone as well as the breakdown for the whole meal served with zucchini, sauce,and garnished with bacon as pictured.

Why are these salmon balls egg free??  Well…I have a family member who recently was diagnoses with MANY food sensitivities and therefore you will be seeing many more allergy friendly recipes on my blog.  If you do not have an egg issue, feel free to use 1 egg as a binder in this recipe.  But, its not needed. These bake up in the oven and get nice and golden with a bit of crispness on the outside.  They can be reheated in a hot skillet with oil as well!

salmon2

Salmon Ball ingredients:

  • 12 oz. wild caught pink salmon (2 cans, drained)
  • 2 Tbsp avocado or extra light olive oil
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp. ground golden flax meal
  • 1 Tbsp. coconut flour
  1. Mix everything in a large bowl until really well combined
  2. Heat oven to 400 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper, or use a high quality non stick pan.
  3. Use your hands to smash the mixture together, forming small balls.  I divided mine into 15 balls (5 balls per serving) as this recipe yields about 3 servings.
  4. Bake for 25 min or till starting to turn golden brown on the outside.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare the sauce

Creole Mustard:

  • 3 Tbsp. yellow mustard
  • 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • pinch of salt, pepper, onion, garlic powders
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 Tbsp. avocado, MCT, or extra light olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp. filtered water
  1. Whisk together and serve

To make the full dish:

Plate by drizzling 2 Tbsp. creole sauce on a dish, topping this with sliced, spiralized, or grated zucchini (100 grams) per serving.  Top with 5 salmon balls, and garnish with one diced crisp slice of bacon.

Nutrition Facts: Salmon Balls Alone
Servings 3.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 223
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 11 g 17 %
Saturated Fat 1 g 7 %
Monounsaturated Fat 7 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 40 mg 13 %
Sodium 446 mg 19 %
Potassium 0 mg 0 %
Total Carbohydrate 2 g 1 %
Dietary Fiber 2 g 6 %
Sugars 0 g
Protein 27 g 54 %
Nutrition Facts: For Entire Meal
Servings 3.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 353
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 25 g 39 %
Saturated Fat 3 g 16 %
Monounsaturated Fat 17 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 40 mg 13 %
Sodium 465 mg 19 %
Potassium 42 mg 1 %
Total Carbohydrate 4 g 1 %
Dietary Fiber 2 g 8 %
Sugars 1 g
Protein 27 g 54 %

Brownie Batter Fat Bombs! Free of ~ Dairy, Grains, Soy, Eggs, Nuts

batter

These are by far and away my favorite keto treat EVER!  They seriously taste just like brownie batter!  The best part…it takes seconds to make them.  The one caveat, you do need to use the recommended protein powder from the recipe to achieve the right texture and flavor.

This recipe uses the simplest ingredients and is surprisingly free of the major allergens: nuts, dairy, soy, eggs, and of course grains.  Even your kids will love these!  They do contain some protein as well, so they make a great travel snack.  If you need these to stay temperature stable, swap out the coconut oil for coconut butter. I have the nutritional information for both options listed below.

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (or coconut butter/manna)
  • 2 scoops Plant Fusion chocolate protein powder (could also try vanilla for a cake batter fat bomb!)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 Tbsp. confectioners swerve (optional)

 

  1. In a microwave safe bowl, melt the coconut oil or butter
  2. Whisk in the protein powder, vanilla, salt, and optional sweetener
  3. stir till smooth, then transfer to silicone molds, or parchment lined dish and place in freezer to harden up
  4. divide into 12 servings
Nutrition Facts: Using Coconut Oil Base
Servings 12.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 100
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10 g 15 %
Saturated Fat 8 g 40 %
Monounsaturated Fat 1 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0 %
Sodium 65 mg 3 %
Potassium 10 mg 0 %
Total Carbohydrate 1 g 0 %
Dietary Fiber 0 g 0 %
Sugars 1 g
Protein 4 g 7 %
Nutrition Facts: Using Coconut Manna (butter)
Servings 12.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 87
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6 g 10 %
Saturated Fat 5 g 27 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0 %
Sodium 68 mg 3 %
Potassium 10 mg 0 %
Total Carbohydrate 3 g 1 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 5 %
Sugars 1 g
Protein 4 g 8 %

Asian Sun Salad Dressing

asian sun 2

I LOVE a crisp, fresh green salad.  One of my all time favorites is Asian Chicken Salad! The combination of nutrient dense leafy greens, fibrous low starch veggies, and a dressing loaded with healthy fat and flavor is the key to an awesome keto salad.

This dressing is egg, soy, grain, dairy, and nut free.  It keeps really well for a week in the fridge!

Blend the following ingredients in a ninja, bullet, or other high powered blender.  Taste for salt/sweet/acidity and adjust as needed.  Store in an airtight container in fridge.

  • 1/2 cup of neutral flavored healthy oil such as Avocado, Extra light olive, or MCT
  • 1 Tbsp. coconut or liquid aminos
  • 1 clove (3 grams) garlic *less if you find raw garlic strong!
  • 2 heaping Tbsp. (20 grams) diced raw white onion
  • 1 oz. lemon juice, or lime juice, or vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. sunflower seed butter
  • 1/4 cup filtered water
  • optional: black pepper, red pepper flakes, ginger, stevia

sun dressing

Nutrition Facts
Servings 8.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 148
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 16 g 25 %
Saturated Fat 2 g 10 %
Monounsaturated Fat 12 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0 %
Sodium 136 mg 6 %
Potassium 32 mg 1 %
Total Carbohydrate 2 g 1 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 2 %
Sugars 0 g
Protein 1 g 2 %

Hacking Your Neuropathways with Mickey Mouse

One of the biggest obstacles in achieving any goal, is hacking ones own inner voice. Seriously!! That inner voice…self talk, so to speak…is the one thing holding most individuals at arms length away from achieving their goals.  The goal may be higher education, dropping a habit like smoking/drinking/binge eating, or implementing a consistent workout routine. No matter what the goal, that inner voice has the power to either drive or divert a person from the path!

Thats all fine and well, and easy to understand right?  But what does that mean for real life goals?

Read this short explanation then I will give you 2 simple but effective action steps you can start implementing right now to correct the problem.

There is a growing body of scientific research–neuropsychology–that has helped a great deal with our understanding of the various components and issues around self talk AND the hard-wiring of our brains.  There is a very important saying among neurophysicists that goes like this:  Neurons That Fire Together Wire Together.  Take note of this because it is important on so many levels.  What does it mean?  Well…every few min you are creating new neuropathways in the brain.  The structure of the brain is literally changing by the second!  And what are the factors that influence and determine the pathway?  Your perception (a.k.a. self talk) about the world and experiences around you.

neuron

So why and how do neurons fire together and what is happening to then make them wire together? 

Well, lets pretend you have a smoking habit.  You may have took up smoking as a social habit.  Or, you may have taken it up as a way to avoid over eating. Or, you may have developed the habit as a way to relieve stress.  It doesn’t matter.  What matters is that all those “reasons” are associated with a relief/solution/reward to certain situations or experiences.  Every time you found yourself in a social situation with other smokers, you rewarded yourself by also smoking.  The neurons fired in this situation…perceiving your social environment where you wanted to fit in and find fellowship.  You lit up. You experienced the rewarding feeling of social acceptance and pleasure.  Now that neuro pathway has been wired.  You did this week after week, month after month.  the pathway is established semi-permanently (unless you take action to rewire it).

The same would happen if you used smoking to avoid eating.  You experienced hunger.  You inner-voice/self talk perceived the hunger as a threat to your waistline.  It told you its a bad thing.  Your neurons fired and decided to find a way to ignore that hunger by using a stimulant like cigarettes. You lit up.  The huger went away, and you felt a burst of energy. This wired your brain to understand smoking instead of eating will satisfy that hunger and thus the pathway is formed.

inner voice

Aside from bad habits, neuro pathways also permanently form to make us feel happy or unhappy on a constant basis.  It all has to do with what we fixate on, and for how long we fixate.  The pathways will form people!!

A lot of these pathways are forged and formed with self talk.

What is self-talk:

Self talk is that inner voice that you have constantly running in the back ground.  It creates interpretations or stories about your reality for you. The problem is…its usually wrong.  Its usually distorted, exaggerated, catastrophic, and ultimately destructive.  Her is a real life example of what self-talk/inner voice is.

You wake up and get ready for the day.  You look in the mirror and your inner voice says:

“Ugh.  You outfit isn’t great and your having a bad hair day…you have a presentation to give at the meeting today and your not going to feel confident because your uncomfortable with how you look”

Everything about that thought is nothing more than negative self-talk… its not true.  Its destructive, but whats worse is you’ve spent several min of your time thinking/fixating on it.  The neurons fire as you look at your reflection.  Your inner voice starts running away about how terrible the meeting will be and as your imagination spins a story of negativity, the neurons begin to wire.  The pathway is formed:  feeling like your appearance is bad and your performance is bad.

This is not made up…or based on a silly theory.  This process (firing and wiring) has been studied and verified (using negative/positive imaging and simulated environment techniques) at major laboratories using sophisticated neuro-imaging equipment to show the pathways being formed on humans.

Why is it such a problem?

I want you to think about often you create these pathways every day.  How often you solidify and reinforce the neuropathways to feel bad and unhappy.

THE GOOD NEWS!!

Thankfully, your brain is the most sophisticated and elaborate instrument that exists.  It can be rewired if you so choose to do so…and quickly! Here are the action steps needed to rewire your neurons in a way that helps you reach your goals and feel happy most of the time!

Step 1:  Identify and Define your Goals

Step 2: Take Key Moments to Rewire Your Neurons

Because many of my followers are on a journey to lose unwanted weight and improve health, lets use weight loss as an example goal.

The goal is to stop eating foods that spike insulin, engage in a consistent exercise routine, make better life choices all day, and become stronger than every excuse that may deter you from those above mentioned goals.

Ok…easy enough.  So do it.

Well…here comes the inner voice…creating a constant 24 hour long web of obstacles that make it so very hard to execute.  Its not will power guys.  Will power is a myth.  Its nothing more than your inner voice. Lets take a look at several daily examples of how the inner voice tries to ruin everything and what you can do to change it in the moment and rewire it:

NOTE:  THIS IS WHERE MICKEY MOUSE COMES IN TO THE PICTURE

Your alarm goes off in the morning.  You set it early with the intentions of doing a workout. Your inner voice immediately sets in to create a problem.

“Its so early.  I feel like I would feel better just getting more sleep and skipping the workout…just for today”

You may have done this before and already have a neuropathway set in place where you allow yourself to skip the workout and lay back down.  The pleasure of laying back down is rewarding (for a bit) and thus a long term neuropathway to always skip the workout and lay back down is acting.  What can we do different?  Create a new pathway by taking time to shift your self talk.

Your alarm goes off.  Its early. Your self talk instead goes like this:

“Its a brand new day.  Im up.  I can move my body.  I’m lucky to be healthy enough to move my body.  I’m excited to take time for myself, to get my blood moving.  To focus and use my energy!”

You workout.  A new pathway is formed.

But here is an extra step you can take to help SOLIDIFY the pathway.  When your workout is done.  Don’t rush off to the next chore. Take time to feel how great it feels.  Take time to enjoy how good it feels to have used your body and improved your strength that day.  The longer you dwell on how awesome it is, the stronger the neuropathway will be formed so you want to do it more and more, and you have more positive resources lingering in your own mind all the time.  This = happiness.

You may be thinking…Emily…its not that easy to just shift your self talk in the snap of a finger to something positive like that.  And you are right!  Luckily, researchers have discovered an amazing trick to help blast away negative or destructive self talk.  Imagine the negative thought/statement/idea being said not by you…..but my MICKEY MOUSE. Thats right…repeat the thought running through your brain in the high pitched, ridiculous voice of Mickey Mouse and see how much water it holds!! See how important/true/real the thought is when its not being said in your tone…but in that of a large, fun loving Disney rodent.  It really does work!!!!!!  Take another example here and see what I mean:

Its time for breakfast…if you follow this blog, you know something like bacon and eggs cooked in butter will be a great meal to balance blood sugar and help you avoid insulin floods.  But…for many…here comes that inner voice to ruin everything.

“I have such a craving for toast.  I think ill just have the toast.  I know all kinds of people who are skinny and still eat toast.  It should be fine…”

Now, say that thought again as Mickey Mouse…

mickey-mouse-photo

Pretty stupid right.  Shut up Mickey…thats dumb.  Its hasn’t worked my whole life and it won’t work today. Eat a breakfast you know will leave you feeling good!!!!

You have your bacon and eggs.  You feel good.  You made a good choice.  Take a min to let that sink in.  Don’t just rush off.  Feel the positive emotion attached to making a healthy choice and sticking to it.  Give your inner voice a second to tell a positive story about how good you will feel later because you won’t have a blood sugar crash.  Allow a new neuro pathway to form.

Here is another example of how negative self talk can ruin our positive energy and how to turn it around in the very moment and rewire for good!

As your day goes on…you get home from work and you decide that instead of sitting in front of the TV and snacking…you will take the kids to the park.  Instead of fixating on how good it would feel to zone out…try fixating for as long as you can on how good it will feel to pay attention to your kids and to be in nature.  We are trying to break that old pathway and make a new one.  The longer you concentrate, the better the pathway is formed. (side note…this is why meditation is so very powerful).

Your inner voice is going to come out to try and ruin everything as usual. Make no doubt about it.

“I don’t know…today maybe isn’t the best day.  I kind of hate the park. I bet there is traffic.  It will be pretty tiring to chase after all the kids.  It would be so much easier just to stay home and put on a show. Maybe tomorrow.”

Now…say that thought as Mickey Mouse.

mouse

 

How dumb.  Tomorrow will be no different than today Mickey…This is my life.  Life is not a future event.  Its a present moment.  Im taking my kids to the park!!

You go to the park.  You soak in the fresh air.  You feel the sunshine.  You hear your kids laughing.  You feel your body as you run around and play with them.  Don’t be distracted away from these feelings.  You need to fixate on them in the present moment to form the new pathway.

All day long, you have to stop the negative self talking mickey mouse BS.  You have to intentionally create positive self talk and intentionally pay attention to how good the good choices and actions feel.  Don’t blow past them in a rush.  You make good choices: Your neurons fire.  You feel the rewards of the actions of those choices: your neurons wire.

Thats all there is to it!!  I hope this was helpful.  These are action steps you can implement RIGHT NOW.  How empowering is that?!