Fudgy Black Bean Brownies

Last week I gave you guys my five ways to practice self-care. My #5 favorite way was to try a new recipe. There are tons of recipes out there, but this one is a must-try this week! If you’ve stocked up on canned goods, this is one recipe that will utilize them. Already gluten-free, full of protein and fiber and easily transformed into a vegan dessert, if needed!

Fudgy Black Bean Brownies

  • Servings: 8 Brownies
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Ingredients:

  • 1 (15.5 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 eggs or 3 flax eggs (1 flax egg= 1 tablespoon flax, 3 tablespoons water)
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • ½ cup chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease 8×8” baking pan.
  2. Put all ingredients into food processor or blender.
  3. Blend until smooth, scraping sides of blender with spatula, if needed.
  4. Pour into pan and bake for 30 minutes.
  5. 5-10 minutes before finished, pull out of oven and top with additional chocolate chips.
  6. Cool before serving.
  7. Store in fridge for up to 5 days.

I’ve even set up a cost analysis for you guys to see how cheap this yummy treat can be!

Ingredient:Cost of item:Cost for recipe:
Black Beans0.580.58
Coconut Sugar3.981.00
Eggs0.550.27
Coconut oil6.640.71
Cocoa powder2.480.62
Baking powder1.580.02
Chocolate Chips6.980.78
Total Cost to make recipe: $3.98

I can’t wait for you guys to try this recipe and practice some self-care this week! Check out my insta post for my other 5 favorite ways to practice self-care.

33 of my Favorite At-Home Workout Videos

With everything going on with COVID-19 right now, along with my job in healthcare, I felt like it was important for me to practice social-distancing to prevent spreading it to the elderly population I work with everyday. Around 40% of you agreed in saying that you are also trying to skip the gym, but want to continue your workout regimen.

I recently started using ClassPass (which I strongly suggest for anyone who is in a rut with their workouts), but workout classes are off-limits until further notice for me. Thankfully, ClassPass is also taking precautions and are allowing all credits to continue to roll over until June. When I received that email, I knew that taking my workout to living room was crucial for my health and my patients. I know that your wellness and the health of your loved ones/patients are important to you as well! So I created a list of some of my favorite workout videos that can be done at home with little to no equipment!

Yoga

Yoga for Stress Management with Adriene :

Yoga for Weight Loss with Adriene :

Yoga for Strength with Adriene :

Yoga for Anxiety and Stress with Adriene:

Full Body Yoga with Kassandra :

Power Vinyasa Flow with Briohny Smyth :

HIIT/Cardio

Total Body HIIT Workout with Heather Robertson :

15 Minute Full Body HIIT Workout (No Equipment) :

Pop sugar’s No-Equipment Cardio & HIIT:

Low Impact Full Body HIIT with Heather Robertson :

35 Minute Nike HIIT :

Full Body HIIT with Weights with Heather Roberston :

Kettlebell HIIT Workout:

Abs

15 Minute Total Core Workout :

10 Minute HIIT Ab Workout :

12 Minutes to Toned Abs Workout :

Tight Core & Arms Workout :

7 Minute Ab Workout | Plank Challenge :

8 Minute Ab Workout :

Barre

Full Length Total Body Barre :

40 Minute Barre Workout :

25 Minute Barre Workout :

Barre Blend Workout :

One Hour Total Body Barre With Cardio :

Full Body Barre Workout | Cardio & Toning :

Strength

Intense Full Body Strength Workout :

32 Minute Dumbbell Total Body Strength Workout :

Full Body Kettlebell Workout :

15 Minute Full Body Kettlebell Workout :

Meditation

Meditation for Anxiety with Adriene :

Meditation for Mental Balance and Grounding with Adriene :

5- Minute Meditation You Can Do Anywhere :

20 Minute Guided Meditation For Higher Self :

My Disordered Eating Story and How I Restrain From Reverting Back

Many people, especially in the health-career field, have struggled with disordered eating. It comes in many different shapes and sizes. Some people struggle with anorexia, some with restrict-binge, some with just binge eating and many in between. In a world constantly judging a persons worth and placing them in certain “boxes” based on the way they look, it’s tough not to compare yourself and get pulled in to disordered eating.

As a dietitian, I myself have also struggled with disordered eating and although I have overcame many of these behaviors, I still have to give myself pep-talks to keep from reverting back.

My story starts in high school after many years of feeling like the ugly duckling; being the heavier friend, feeling uncomfortable wearing girly clothes and having braces for several years. Finally, I was a freshman in high school, had gotten my braces off, and had a whole new school full of new faces that I desperately wanted to impress. I remember creating an “inspo board”. Looking up pictures of girls bodies online and posting to this board. Writing down a countdown of my weight to X out as I lost it. Writing out workout goals and calculating how many calories that would burn. I remember some days only drinking water and eating half a cookie at lunch and then after softball practice, going home and sleeping because I was so exhausted.

This continued through most of high school until I got into my first relationship. I began to get comfortable in the relationship and allowed myself to eat again. I began to gain the weight back, but I didn’t care because I had someone who liked me regardless. Until one day, I stepped on the scale and weighed more than I did way back when I first started my disordered eating. I completely spiraled. I was depressed with the way my body looked and couldn’t believe I let myself get back to that. I wondered how someone would ever want to be with someone who looked like me. I became insecure and jealous and began arguing with my boyfriend. And I restarted my disordered eating. But this time, having more knowledge on nutrition since I knew then that I wanted to become a dietitian, I became obsessed with the food I was eating and obsessed with running it off.

I would wake up every morning, eat a banana and run four to ten miles. I lost the weight again and I thought that this time it was healthy because I was eating healthier foods and working out instead of just restricting. Little did I know that this was mentally and physically straining for me as well. I continued with this type of disordered eating for the first two years of junior college. Until eventually, it was time to move away from home for college. And this is where my disordered eating took its biggest toll.

I went to a university only an hour and a half away from my family and had a few friends that I knew were going there as well. My boyfriend and I were not in a good place, but I thought that I could handle it all. After all, I could handle losing weight when I wanted to. Well, I moved away, became homesick, my boyfriend and I broke up and I spiraled even more. I became depressed and had no desire to eat. This had confirmed my hypothesis that no one wants to be with someone who looked like me. I remember not eating all day, calling my mom in the evenings and her telling me to at least make a smoothie and then just drinking that for dinner.

As I got more accustomed to college and my new friends, I started to get over the break up and being away from home. We began partying every weekend. I was so thin, I felt confident and guys seemed to like me. So I continued my disorder eating with barely eating throughout the week and then feeling good on the weekends and binge eating. This is what started my restrict-binge cycle. I remember feeling so fatigued that I would purposely go to Olive Garden to order spaghetti for the red meat, which I knew had iron for energy. But again, I thought that I was being healthy. I remember one weekend going home and my mom was shocked with how thin I was. My sister made comments and I would just say that I was running a lot so I had a high metabolism.

I then got into another relationship. And again, I gained the “comfortable” weight back. We trained for a marathon together and I remember feeling so discouraged because how could I gain weight when I was running several miles a day on top of teaching group fitness classes? I wasn’t concerned with the fact that it was probably muscle weight or the fact that I was fueling my body to be able to run 26.2 miles. I was concerned with the number on the scale. And yet again, I became insecure and jealous. I started fighting with my boyfriend and we broke up. And the cycle continued.

Until finally, I graduated from college and when I felt like everything I knew had been lost, I decided to move away. I moved to Tennessee. And this was honestly the best decision I could’ve ever made. I started new in a brand new city with new friends and many new experiences to see/have. I stopped worrying about my weight and began worrying about becoming a dietitian and enjoying every bit of life. I stayed single and began to love myself and let my self-worth be determined by the education I was receiving, the hard work I was putting in and the amazing experiences I was having. I finally felt in control of my life and health. I finally got back to a normal weight and I was okay with that.

And that is where my story ends and begins again. The end of an unhealthy cycle and the BEGINNING of a new story started here. Here in Tennessee, as a dietitian and placing my self worth on my knowledge and experiences and not on my looks.

However, I still have my days that I struggle. Overall, I feel happier and healthier. But I do have days where I dive into those thoughts where I compare myself to others; what I eat, what I wear, what I know and the way I look. I still have days where I wish I was smaller and I have to tell myself to stop. I have to say “we don’t think like that anymore. You are beautiful, smart and talented regardless of the number on the scale or the extra cushion on your body.” I have to give myself pep talks every once in awhile and although I wish I could say I never think about my weight, I think it’s something I may always struggle with. But I’m glad that today I am able to talk myself out of it instead of just spiraling.

So how do I keep myself from reverting back?

1. Ditch the scale

There’s no reason you need a scale. Your weight has no value. Base your health off the nourishing foods you eat, the enjoyable physical activity that you do and the way you feel.

2. Don’t compare yourself to others

Social media is a highlight reel. The “ugly”, tough and stressful days are not shown to you. You’re shown the nice things, the pretty things, the healthy things. You are not shown the cheeseburger they ate the other night or the day that they skipped their workout.

3. Do not base your worth on your looks or the way others perceive you

Your success in life is not based off the number on the scale or whether you have a flat stomach or whether you look good in a mini skirt. Your self-worth is based off the knowledge you have, your hard work ethic and the way you treat others. Your worth is also not based on the guy who broke up with you or the girl who acts like she’s better than you. You can go as far in life as you set your mind to and success is more attractive than nice legs or pretty hair.

I hope that if you are struggling with any of these behaviors or feelings, this will help you overcome them. This is just what worked for me, it may not be what works for you. But I knew that I had to completely change my mindset and focus on things that were healthy for my psyche. If you would like more information go to NEDA’s website.

Also, check out my post “5 Reasons I Feel Happier and Healthier Being 15 Pounds Heavier” for more information how I am feeling after overcoming disordered eating.

Blueberry + Banana Muffins

Growing up, my mom always cooked. I remember going out to restaurants and literally making myself think I was sick, just because it wasn’t my mother’s cooking. And honestly, when I think back, it’s not even the home-cooked dinners that I remember the most. It’s the weekend breakfasts! Every weekend, we woke up to a home-made breakfast. Whether it be pancakes, waffles, eggs and biscuits ‘n gravy or muffins. We always knew that weekends were for lazy mornings and good breakfasts with the family.

One of my all-time favorite breakfasts are muffins. When we were young, my mom would make up a big batch and we would eat them throughout the week too! We even had a mini muffin maker that would make five tiny muffins and it always cooked them to the perfect temp where they had a nice crisp breading on the outside, but a moist cake-y inside.

I try to continue this tradition, regardless of living alone, because it is something that I continue to look forward to on the weekends and it is not only my way of satisfying a craving for those yummy breakfast foods, but also a piece of home to me.

The fun thing about muffins, is that you can always mix them up! There are so many variations that you can make and I love explore with that. So instead of making my typical banana nut or banana chocolate chip muffins, I had been craving a good ole blueberry muffin.

Blueberry + Banana Muffins

  • Servings: 12 muffins
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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup white flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 cups blueberries (I used frozen and thawed them and smashed them in the bag)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and oil a 12 set muffin tin.
  2. Melt the coconut oil in the microwave for 30 seconds.
  3. If using frozen blueberries – measure out two cups and place in ziplock bag in hot water to thaw. Once thawed, use hands to mash the blueberries.
  4. If using fresh blueberries – wash and drain and then smash with a fork on a plate.
  5. Mash the bananas on a plate until they are pureed consistency.
  6. Mix in a large bowl the melted coconut oil, coconut sugar, eggs, mashed bananas and vanilla extract.
  7. Mix in a medium sized bowl the flours, salt and baking powder.
  8. Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.
  9. Fold in blueberries.
  10. Scoop muffin mix into muffin tin and bake for 35-40 minutes.

 

 

5 Reasons I Feel Happier and Healthier Being 15 Pounds Heavier

Hello friends!

I want to disclaim that this post is not what you may think. I am not saying to read this and then gain fifteen pounds to feel better. I am simply suggesting that creating a healthy relationship with food, moving your body only in ways that you enjoy and finding a love for your body- no matter the size – may result in a happier, healthier you! I want to point out unhealthy cycles that I once had to stay a certain size and weight that caused me to feel drained, stressed and uncomfortable. And I want to encourage anyone who is struggling with the same things to find a healthy place. Continue reading “5 Reasons I Feel Happier and Healthier Being 15 Pounds Heavier”