Diet-To-Go’s 2016 List of Top 100 Weight Loss Blogs

Last week, I received some very AWESOME news.

I’m so excited to share that I’ve been recently included in Diet-To-Go’s 2016 list of Top 100 Weight Loss Blogs!

I’m humbled and super honored to be a part of this GREAT group of bloggers sharing their journeys of weight loss, health, and self love.

I’m listed at spot #15. Check out the entire list here!

It’s been incredible to join the weight loss world via my blog and social media these last few years. The community, as a whole, is just so inspiring and supportive. It’s without a date been a tremendous part of my weight loss motivation and still continues to be as I continue my journey!

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Everyone is capable of making change in their life. Living the life you love and working toward the best version of you inspires all of us. The ability to share those stories only helps us build this positive momentum in our lives.

We continue moving forward and the biggest secret to success is support!

Thank you, Diet-To-Go!

& as always thank you to all of my readers and followers. Your support along the way is priceless and means the world to me.

Progress Update & New Jenny Craig Menu Items! #WeightLossWednesday

Disclosure: I was provided a free trial program and a discount on the Jenny Craig meals. However, the opinions and writing in this post are entirely my own. Results not typical. Members following the Jenny Craig program, on average, lose 1-2 lbs per week.

It’s been a while since I’ve done a weight loss journey progress update. Since beginning my journey in September of 2013, I am down -87 lbs!

58 lbs of this weight loss has been with Jenny Craig since February 2015.

With all of the plans I’ve been on before, THIS one is definitely the one that works best for me. I still have another ~40 to go in order to reach my final goal weight.

I’m excited to get it done so I can move into the maintenance part of my journey.

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I’m finally getting back into a healthy routine with incorporating working out into my busy work schedule and NOT making anymore excuses.

My willpower is back – and saying no to temptations and yes to a better me is getting easier and easier again! My focus is strong on reaching my goals.

This week I wanted to feature two of my favorite Jenny Craig meals – they’re new and delicious!

The first is the Southwest Chicken Salad Topper.

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It’s super delicious. You heat up the chicken, veggies, and beans then pour it all over your bed of lettuce. You also have tortilla strips and a little bit of shredded cheddar to add. Then I add my favorite salsa and viola…. healthy deliciousness!!

The new Classic Cheeseburger is taking over for the Beef and Cheese Slider.

I tried one last week and it’s sooo much better! Less bread and more of the good stuff. Also, I find that this one is much easier to load up with all your favorite burger fixings.

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I also tried the new and revamped Grilled Chicken Sandwich and it has highly improved. I couldn’t eat the old version at all. This one is much more tender and juicier. Definite upgrade!

Here’s this week’s #SweatySelfie:

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HAPPY #WEIGHTLOSSWEDNESDAY!
Thanks so much for reading!

Remember, if you guys have any questions for me about my weight loss journey, Jenny Craig, or any other topics you would like me to cover, please write in and let me know!

I’ll be happy to feature them in a future post!

3 Tips for Building Your Weight Loss Motivation Momentum

Disclosure: I was provided a free trial program and a discount on the Jenny Craig meals. However, the opinions and writing in this post are entirely my own. Results not typical. Members following the Jenny Craig program, on average, lose 1-2 lbs per week.

Of course, we know that the biggest motivation is when we see our hard-work paying off. Results like the numbers dropping on the scale, feeling it in the way we wear our clothes, and having added energy, etc. This is what we call building your weight loss MOMENTUM.

But, unfortunately, this won’t happen overnight. Good things like changing your life forever TAKE TIME. So you have to stay patient, stay positive… dedicated and persistent…

Once we DO start seeing results, though, it gets easier and easier to make healthy choices in our daily life.

Stay committed. YOU WILL GET THERE.

Here are three tips to help you build your weight loss motivation momentum while on your health journey to a happier, healthier life:

1.) Practice Mindful Eating and Enjoy your Food

Luckily, on the Jenny Craig program – I get to enjoy some really tasty foods. Mindful eating is the practice of slowing down and truly taking the time to enjoy what you are consuming and nourishing your body with. One thing I’ve always struggled with is eating too fast and gobbling my food down without even really tasting it. It takes TIME for your brain to register that you are full… so SLOW down, what is the rush?

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For further reading, check out this really helpful infographic all about the practice of mindful eating from the University of Illinois.

2.) Take Sweaty Selfies After Your Workouts! 

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If you’re like me, you feel your best and most empowered after a great workout session. Whether it’s kicking butt in the gym while on a cardio machine, weight lifting, running, spinning, doing a group class, or working out at home… there’s something about SWEAT that is just so encouraging!

It’s physical PROOF. How does that one quote go? “Sweat is fat crying” – YES!

“I wear all black when I work out because it’s a funeral for my fat” – YES! LOVE IT! KILL IT!

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Literally, by keeping record of your sweat sessions and documenting your journey with these photos, you’ll be able to see your hard work pay off… I think there’s nothing more awesome than documenting your weight loss journey – especially, all of the hard work you are putting in to bettering yourself!

I’ve hoped on to the #sweatyselfie movement and totally recommend you doing the same! Have fun and post your photos to Instagram with the hashtag #sweatyselfie.

Currently, there are 164,804 #sweatyselfie photos! Awesome. Go team!

3.) Have a Daily GOAL Reminder!

My Jenny Craig Anywhere consultant, Amber, suggested this idea to me. Go out and buy a goal outfit or do like I did and bust out a goal dress that you’ve had hanging in your closet.

Hang your outfit up, front and center, so you can see it/feel it everyday. It’s a great physical and visual reminder of what you are working so hard towards!

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This is my goal dress. I want to fit into this sexy little purple dress by my 29th birthday (which is in July)!

The story behind this dress is that it was a gift from my Dad years ago and unfortunately, I gained weight so quickly at that point that I wasn’t ever able to even wear it out. I WILL be in this dress soon! Mark my words.

What’s your daily goal reminder? Do you have a #goaldress, outfit, or swimsuit that you’ve purchased to motivate you to reach your goals?  Share it with me in the comments section!

Typical Eating Schedule on Jenny Craig

Disclosure: I was provided a free trial program and a discount on the Jenny Craig meals. However, the opinions and writing in this post are entirely my own. Results not typical. Members following the Jenny Craig program, on average, lose 1-2 lbs per week.

As a follow up to my last blog post featuring my favorite Jenny Craig foods, I was recently asked by a reader how often I get to eat and how much.

Well, the beauty about the Jenny Craig plan is that everything is already portioned for you. Meals and snacks all come perfectly planned for you so that you don’t really have to think about it. Jenny Craig teaches you what a proper portion size truly is. After years of not having the best eating habits, re-learning these things is exactly what the plan helps you to do.

I always start my day with breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up.

This helps to get your metabolism going. I also always try and have a full glass of water before breakfast and drink as much as possible with breakfast. You’ll notice that water is a must and the more the merrier when working to lose weight!

Once I get to work, I’m ready for some coffee. Snack time is always around 10 AM. My body is almost always naturally hungry at this time now – so I grab my Anytime bar.

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Lunch is around noon – I always have a nice side salad with my JC lunch entree and this keeps me full until around 4 p.m. where I’ll grab either an apple sauce, some fruit, or Greek yogurt.

Once I get home I work out then it’s time for dinner. I have my Jenny Craig dinner entree, load up on veggies, and have my dessert/snack. Again, drinking as much water throughout the day as possible!!

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If I’m still super hungry later in the night, I’ll grab a sugar-free jello cup or a sugar-free popsicle as a treat. If I’m wanting something warm to drink, I’ll grab a de-caf coffee or a fat-free hot chocolate packet.

This is what my typical work day looks like. That’s if it’s perfectly planned and no interruptions. I’ve had to learn to make my eating schedule a priority so I don’t get ravenous or forget to eat. This is what works best for me. Eating 5 times a day in properly portioned meals and snacks… plus, tons and tons of water!!!

Weekends are usually a bit more spontaneous at times but my Jenny Craig consultant is there to help me plan my week and any challenges I might face. During each of my Jenny Craig Anywhere appointments, we look at the week ahead to see what’s going on and how I can best handle it.

Of course, life can never always be planned so I keep my Jenny Craig pocket guide with me in my purse for an added cheat sheet to help make the healthiest and best choices while on my Jenny Journey!

Please let me know if you have any Jenny Craig related questions for my next blog post and I would be happy to answer them!

Jenny Craig Favorites

Disclosure: I was provided a free trial program and a discount on the Jenny Craig meals. However, the opinions and writing in this post are entirely my own. Results not typical. Members following the Jenny Craig program, on average, lose 1-2 lbs per week.

Today’s post is inspired by a question I received on Facebook about my experience with the Jenny Craig foods.

So Kiley, this one’s for you! Thank you for writing in and I’m so excited for you as you start your own Jenny Journey!! 🙂

 

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I’ve been following the Jenny Craig plan for the greater part of the last year. I’ve tried all the foods, anytime bars, and shakes. I definitely have my very favorites, the one’s I like, and the few I don’t like at all and try to avoid. But overall, I would say I really enjoy about 90% of the Jenny foods.

I have no problem sticking with the pre-planned menus because I love the variety. If there happens to be a menu item listed that I am not a fan of, I just cross it off, and order something else I’d rather have instead.

The only item I really try to avoid is the Grilled Chicken Sandwich. For me, it’s hard to spruce up and I don’t like the texture of the chicken or sandwich. It’s too dry. But I have heard rumors that this item has been revamped and is juicer than it was before. Maybe I should give it another shot?

Here are my favorite Jenny Craig Breakfast menu items:

  • Cranberry Almond Cereal or the Multi-Grain Hoops Cereal w/ fat-free skim milk or unsweetened almond milk
  • Classic Waffles w/ Sugar-free Maple Syrup
  • Egg, Cheese & Turkey Sausage Burrito
  • Turkey Bacon & Egg White Sandwich
  • Blueberry Pancakes & Veggie Sausage w/ Sugar-free Maple Syrup

Favorite Jenny Craig Lunch items:

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  • Loaded Baked Potato or Broccoli & Cheese Stuffed Potato
  • Cheesy Potatoes & Chicken
  • Stuffed Pizza Bites
  • Southwest Chicken Fajita Bowl
  • Turkey Burger or the Beef & Cheese Slider
  • Swedish Meatballs

Favorite Jenny Craig Dinner items:

  • Kung Pao Beef
  • Meat Loaf & Barbecue Sauce
  • White Fish & Mushroom Risotto
  • Chicken Pot Pie
  • Italian Style Pasta Bake
  • Chicken Pesto Pasta

Favorite Jenny Craig Meatless items:

  • Macaroni & Cheese
  • Roasted Vegetable Lasagna
  • Three Cheese Ziti Marina

Favorite Jenny Craig Snacks/Desserts:

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  • Cheese Curls
  • Kettle Corn or White Cheddar Popcorn
  • Lemon Cooler Cookies
  • S’mores Bar
  • Yogurt Dream Bar
  • Vanilla Buttercream Cupcake or Red Velvet Cupcake
  • Triple Chocolate Cheesecake
  • Lemon Cake
  • Chocolate Lava Cake

Favorite Jenny Craig Anytime Bars/Shakes:

  • Peanut Butter Crunch Bar
  • Cookie Dough Bar
  • Chocolate Dream Shake or Vanilla Cream Shake

You can take a look at all of the Jenny Craig menu items here.

They really have SO many enticing options to fit whatever your food preferences may be.

The Microwave vs. Toaster Oven Difference

 

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Recently, my husband surprised me with a toaster oven just for cooking my Jenny Craig items. I have to say it makes a great difference with the taste of some of the menu items! Obviously, the microwave is great for when you are on the go or in a hurry but when you have the extra time to slow cook your meals, the toaster oven really helps create some healthy meal-time magic.

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Take for example, the JC pizzas – I will only eat them now if I can cook them in my toaster oven… They are just soooo much better! They come out cheesy, crispy, and so delicious. See what I mean? Paired with a side salad – it’s the perfect lunch!

If you don’t have one already, I highly recommend getting a toaster oven from your local Bed, Bath, and Beyond – and be sure to use a coupon! It’s definitely worth the investment when it comes to bettering the taste and textures of your Jenny foods. Of course, you can always use your regular size oven, too.

If you’re wondering, Jenny Craig provides all of the oven cooking instructions on their members-only website but on the boxes of foods – you’ll only see the microwave instructions.

 

For those of you who are also on a Jenny Journey, what are your favorite Jenny Craig items?

Have you tried cooking your meals with a toaster oven? Notice the difference?

What are your favorite ways to “volumize” your meals?

Making the Mental Shift During Different Phases of Your Weight Loss Journey

Disclosure: I was provided a free trial program and a discount on the Jenny Craig meals. However, the opinions and writing in this post are entirely my own. Results not typical. Members following the Jenny Craig program, on average, lose 1-2 lbs per week.

 

Recently my Jenny Craig Anywhere consultant, Amber, really got me thinking about how not only does your body change during weight loss, but your mindset does, as well. Especially, if you’re like me and you have A LOT of weight you want to lose from start to finish.

I’ve been struggling over the last few months because my weight loss has not been as fast and aggressive as it was previously. And that’s OKAY!

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These things take time and progress and patience go hand in hand.

I take pride in the fact that I am doing all of this on my own, the natural way. No, I’m not going to lose all my weight within a couple of months like if I had gone the weight loss surgery route.

I have to realize, I am changing my life for the better, forever – not just my body. It’s no wonder this process has taken me years. I initially started my weight loss journey back in September of 2013. And everything has changed since that day.

It’s taken me some trials and tribulations to find what is the right program for me. I lost my gallbladder along the way and have learned many, many lessons about weight loss and healthy living. Some days, I still really struggle but I’m proud of my journey, so far, and.. I’m not done!

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Amber says your motivation changes from when you’re first beginning your journey to when you’re over half way to your goal (like I am now).

I never really thought about this but it’s true. When you’re first beginning, you’re so sick of everything… the way you feel, the way you look in the mirror, etc. Literally, everywhere you turn, there’s a constant reminder of why you MUST change your life.

But after losing 75 pounds, you’re proud of the weight you’ve lost and the way you look and feel. You’re, dare I say, getting happier and happier… and in turn, more comfortable and accepting of your body.

But still… and here comes my frustration, I’m not at my goal weight or goal size! I don’t want to stop. I haven’t finished my weight loss journey yet.

Remember, losing weight is ALL a mental thing. Amber has helped me to come up with a few different strategies to re-focus so I can reach my final goal.

  • GO shopping and buy smaller clothes. Compare how much better the entire shopping experience is and use that as motivation… it will only get better and your wardrobe will thank you!
  • Set a goal date/event. (For me, this date is my 29th birthday: July 17th!)
  • Re-visit your list of motivation/goals from when you first started your journey at (fill in the blank) weight.
  • Now, at your current weight, re-write a new and updated list of motivations and goals.
  • Be proud of all that you have accomplished but keep your eye on the prize!
  • Remember, this is a lifestyle change.. embrace your new lifestyle and be confident in the fact that you are loving yourself each and everyday. This is huge progress and something to always be mindful of. Congratulations!!

Has your motivation changed from when you first started?

What are some things that continue to keep you motivated on your weight loss journey?

I’d love to hear about your journey! The secret to success is support!

My Jenny Craig Re-Start (Week 3) – Overcoming the Sick Cycle Carousel & My Latest Inspiration: Tory Johnson’s Shift for Good #WeightLossWednesday

Disclosure: I was provided a free trial program and a discount on the Jenny Craig meals. However, the opinions and writing in this post are entirely my own. Results not typical. Members following the Jenny Craig program, on average, lose 1-2 lbs per week.

Hallelujah!! My willpower is finally back!

I’m three weeks into my program re-start with Jenny Craig Anywhere and finally, avoiding all those workplace temptations and invitations from family and friends to go out to eat is not a problem for me anymore. I guess my willpower took a temporary vacation during the holidays, yet again, teaching me how much of a MENTAL game all of this weight loss thing really is. If you’re not mentally focused, strong, and dedicated – it’s not going to happen for you. No matter how many times we feel like we’ve failed or fallen off, we have to dust ourselves off, begin again, and remember to love ourselves first.

 

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I always tend to find myself in this frustrating cycle of.. starting the year strong, making all of those changes, losing a great amount of weight, then toward the end of the year… here comes vacation time and the holidays… some how this idea of “being lax” with the weight loss thing just for a week or two comes into play. I slack off and “go easy” on myself for a bit… and then SURPRISE: it always results in gaining back some of the weight. So the cycle continues and here, I find myself again, January 2016, getting my sh!t together to re-start my efforts and make this all a permanent change. It’s more than just a little bit frustrating and I know I have no one to blame but myself.

The Lifehouse song, “Sick Cycle Carousel” plays in my head.. and, seriously, I want off this weight loss/weight gain Merry-Go-Round once and for all! And I know I say this every year… I’m praying, hoping, and working to not be in this same spot at the beginning of 2017.

I am setting my long-term goal this year at 50 lbs of weight loss and keeping it off. I want to hit my final goal weight this year and to stop coming up short when it comes to that stupid, yet almighty, 3 digit number on the scale. I know this is a process, and patience and persistence is what’s going to get me there.

Progress Update: I’ve lost 10 lbs with Jenny Craig Anywhere over the last three weeks.

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I am super proud of my progress but it’s definitely taken some time for my body to get back on track and readjust to healthy living. During the holidays, I was eating a lot more sugar and crap than my body has been used to for the last year. It completely threw my body out of whack.. and tell me again, why do we do this to ourselves???

Talking with my Jenny Craig Anywhere consultant has been a huge help to me during this time of getting back on track. She helps me realize just how NOT WORTH IT it really is. Why throw away months and months of hard work just to “enjoy” the holidays with your loved ones? Since when does “enjoying” have to always be tied to food and drinking? Hopefully, next year, I won’t experience this sick cycle carousel for the umpteenth time.

On another note, I’m still not back to my rigorous work out schedule quite yet but I’ll get there. I know my weight loss is going to be much slower without at least 4 days of dedicated cardio per week. So I’m setting that as my next short-term goal. Get back in the gym, Christine!

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Weight Loss Inspiration via Tory Johnson’s Shift For Good

Just over two years ago, I fell in love with Tory Johnson and her book, The Shift. Needless to say, I’ve been excitedly awaiting her follow-up book, Shift For Good, for the longest time – pretty much as soon as I heard the rumors saying she was working on it. I’ve finally got my hands on this book and just started reading it.

Already, I can tell that this book is EXACTLY what I need at this exact moment in my weight loss journey. It’s uncanny – because this is how I felt when I first read, The Shift. I love her and her books because it’s so easy to connect with her. I totally feel like we are on this weight loss journey together and she has so much to teach me!

 

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One of Tory’s key points, I’ve already connected with – just by reading the first few chapters – is how she talks about being pretty much all or nothing when it comes to healthy living. She brings up an awesome point of how you would never reward a recovering alcoholic with a beer or chronic smoker with a cigarette. That would completely break their sobriety/recovery and trigger bad behaviors that got them in trouble in the first place. It would completely un-do all of their progress, etc. Plus, they have made a lifestyle change, why would they ever go back to their demons and terrible vices as a “reward” for the hard work they’ve put in?

After reflecting on all of this for the last week, I’m very much realizing, like Tory, how much of an all-or-nothing weight loss personality I have. While on Jenny Craig, I’m striving to reach BALANCE… but first, I want to reach my weight loss goal before I can focus on practicing balance.

So I’m back to 100% Jenny Craig meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I have my Anytime bar everyday for my mid-morning snack. Even delicious snacks and desserts. All perfectly portioned and prepared. Plus all the veggies, fresh fruits, and un-limited free foods my heart desires… and I absolutely love it.

 

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The Jenny Craig weight loss plan has been an absolute god-send over the last year and I know I will reach my goals.. I have all the tools & support necessary, all the foods necessary, etc… but it all depends on ME and my MENTAL strength, focus, and drive to stay dedicated and not let anything (any holiday or other excuse) get in my way.

Whew! Talk about a therapeutic post!

If you’re still with me, thank you for reading! I hope you are doing well, starting your year off strong, hitting your goals, and being a better you with each new day. We got this! 2016 is going to be an amazing year for all of us.

I would love to hear about how your journey is going. You can always leave a comment on any of my posts or send me an e-mail! Like I always say, the secret to success is SUPPORT.

I very highly recommend Tory’s books for some real-talk, weight loss inspiration.

What is inspiring you this week?

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