Plant-based cooking shows and tips for your new Instant Pot

I hope you have received your new Instant Pot, many people took advantage of the smoking deal on the Instant Pot (IP) the other day.  Today many of you have or will receive your new Instant Pot, I received my 2nd one.  I look forward to having both on hand for those days when one is just not enough. Continue reading “Plant-based cooking shows and tips for your new Instant Pot”


Practical Gardening

My front flower bed the first week of June 2018

These days who has time for gardening!  I don’t, but some how I managed to end up with this enjoyable garden.  The important thing is to make gardening practical.  No one expects you to spend your entire weekend gardening.  I try to spend as little time as possible working on my garden and below I tell you how I did it. Continue reading “Practical Gardening”

Get the munchies while you’re watching a show?

If you are anything like me… you probably grab a bag of chips or something else really unhealthy and sit down in front of the TV and munch away mindlessly. This can be a very difficult habit to break so we’re not going to try to break it right away. Instead we are going to replace that unhealthy snack with a healthy one, like the snack pictured below. Throw together a few veggies and hummus or fresh air popped popcorn. You are guaranteed to eat less calories this way then eating chips directly from the bag.

veggies and humus to snack on during my show

The snacks don’t have to take a lot of time to put together either. These snacks are organic store bought baby carrots, some peas, and cherry tomatoes. Along with store-bought hummus this becomes a very healthy and filling snack. Maybe someday you will feel so good from eating so healthy that you will want to try making homemade hummus like I did. I don’t always have time to make homemade hummus though so I like the option of buying it at the store (try to find a version of hummus with no added oil).

Hummus and veggease



The best blender

If you have watched any of the  cooking videos from my last post “More plant-based cooking shows and tips for your new Instant Pot“, then I am sure you have seen that the cooks like to use high speed blenders.  I love my Mix n Blend II by Blendtec.  As you can see from the picture of mine, it is way more than a blender.  I love to mix up plant-based cookies, breads and batters in the mixing bowl too.

Mix n Blend II

Weight Plateau Breached

On May 26th I created a post titled Burn more fat.  Today is exactly one month and I am ready to report my results so far.  I am ecstatic to report that I lost 5.2 lbs using the “slow down” method of running with MAF heart rate training.  One of the reasons I am so ecstatic is that I had hit a plateau in my weight loss until changing to this MAF training with my Polar heart rate monitor.  I started noticing a difference in my face first, a coworker asked me one day if I had lost more weight, that my face looked thinner, and I was excited to say yes and tell her my MAF experience.  Then I went on vacation for two weeks and didn’t exercise as much and didn’t eat as well as usual, and I still lost weight.  I was very active on vacation though, my sister likes to be active too, which helps.  I drove to her house in UT ( an 11 hour drive) and stayed for a couple of weeks.  During my stay we ran a few times, hiked once, camped 4 nights, and went paddle boarding 2 days.  I usually run 3 to 4 days a week.

With all of this in mind I should see better results in another month.  It is really hot here in AZ though, so my training is suffering (especially since I am not a morning person).  The coolest it has been lately is 85 degrees and that is at 6am, by 8am it is 91 degrees.  Today I started my run at 9:45am and it was 94 degrees and overcast.  I ran for an hour.  By 10:45am it was 96 degrees.

As far as eating, I have been trying to avoid processed sugar and junk food.  I have been eating more higher fat plant foods like nuts, seeds, and avocados.  After reading Finding Ultra I decided my body would be ok with the higher fat foods since it is switching to burning more fat.  Rich Roll talked about eating avocado sandwiches, and I have been enjoying a few since then.  I eat more fruits and VeggEase and less pastas, grains and beans.

Burn more fat

One side effect of switching to a plant-based lifestyle is losing weight, bummer right?  Wrong…I loved it!!!  I lost 26 lbs in less than 5 months with no effort.  In January 2014 I weighed 217 lbs.  I am 5′ 10″, so even though I didn’t look obese, I felt it.  I was definitely overweight, and still am.  In March 2014 I started eating plant based full time (after easing into it).  By July 2014 I was down 26 lbs.  Today 5/25/16 I weigh 181, that’s  a total of 36 lbs gone.  I still have more fat to lose though, so I continue to tweek my diet and exercise to try to get down to a more healthy weight, my goal at the moment is 170 lbs, that would get me into the normal BMI range.  (I have Hypothyroidism, so I struggle with a system that is not optimal).

Karen October 2013

Karen May 2016
Once I lost weight, I felt so good I started walking regularly for exercise.  I walked for about a year then eventually I starting running again…well jogging.  I was a long distance runner starting in grade school (if you can believe it).  My first race was in 4th grade, the Y-ild  (wild) run for fun at the Wild Animal Park in San Diego, CA.  It was a 4 mile fun run.  I placed in the top 3 in my age group and I was hooked.  Who wouldn’t enjoy doing something they were good at?   I continued running cross country and track in Jr. High, High School, and college.  After giving birth to my two sons my weight started to grow year after year. My weight finally ballooned to a point I could not longer ignore once my boys were in high school.  I started having serious health problems in 2014 so I knew it was time for a change.  I am so greatful I found the Forks Over Knives documentary and that it gave me the motivation to change my way of eating.

Now I am obsessed with losing the rest of the weight.  I believe I have finally found the answer to losing the rest of the weight, I was working too hard.  I need to slow down to burn more fat.  I recently discovered Dr. Phil Maffetone and his 180 MAF method when I was listening to a podcast of  If you want to burn fat you have got to check out his method:  The 180 formula .  He explains how to get your aerobic system (fat burning system) to work more efficiently so you are burning fat instead of sugar (carbs).  Our bodies are amazing, they can run on two different fuels, fats and/or carbohydrates (sugar).  He also explains how the better fuel for us to function optimally is fat.  He teaches you how to get your body to switch to fat burning instead of sugar burning with his 180 formula.  If you are a runner you get to slow down.  If you are a walker, you may need to speed up.  The best part is that once your system switches to fat burning you will be healthier and less prone to injury.  I just learned about this last week and started implementing my MAF heart rate into my runs, so I will keep you posted.  11 lbs to go and I will reach my goal.

I am currently using my Apple Watch to monitor my heart rate, but just purchased the Polar H7 heart rate monitor today.  It looks more user friendly for runs.  How did I not know this valuable information before now, with my background?  I am so glad I know it now.  This is certainly a fun adventure.

**I DO NOT recommend using Maffetone nutrition!!  Rich Roll trains with MAF and a plant-based diet. **

Polar H7 heart rate monitor





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