SPRING CLEANING for the mind.body.home

Doing a little twist on the whole SPRING CLEANING thing and running a group focusing on cleaning up your mind + body + home!

Mind

  • Take inventory on all the old thoughts that aren’t serving you and vow to change them. You can even write them down and then re-write them with a positive spin.
  • A new season is a great time to start a meditation practice. Check out my easy meditation guide.
  • Commit to a new self care practice. Taking care of yourself works wonders to keep you feeling refreshed and stress-free. Schedule some down-time into your day or week, take a relaxing bath or shut-down all technology and social media for one day each week.
  • Use lavender essential oil. Just one whiff can leave you stress-free and relaxed

Body

  • Spring is the perfect time to detox your shopping cart and clean up your diet. Opt for more spring veggies like leafy greens, choose bitter foods like radishes, add raw, lightly cooked and sprouted foods and go easy on the heavier foods like soy, dairy and grains.
  • Switch up your exercise routine to give your body a boost. If you’ve been sticking to indoor workouts, take your sweat session outside.
  • Supplement your healthy eating. This is the only one I would recommend
  • Update your everyday household essentials. Choose products that you love but that are also safe. Since we cook at home a lot and generate a lot of laundry, we have to make sure our detergents are safe and effective.  Unfortunately, most common, store-bought laundry detergents are filled with unhealthy chemicals. I will share DIY all natural laundry powder detergent.

Home

  • Clear out clutter. Your home is a reflection of you, so a cluttered home means a cluttered mind. Give closets and drawers a once-over. Throw away and recycle junk and donate valuable items you no longer use.
  • Burn white sage. White sage is a sacred herb that is said to have purifying energies. Give your home or office a spiritual cleansing by burning a smudge stick which will remove any negative

We’ve got a full 4 weeks of tips and tricks up our sleeves! • stress management • decluttering tips • meal plans and recipes • organization techniques • scheduling & planning • clean products & more energy!

Does this sound like something you would like to do?

If so, take the time to complete the application below.  I will contact you within 24 hours to discuss whether this would be a good fit!  I am accepting a small group of customers for this group and I would love to have women who are seeking wellness!   So let’s get started 😉

xo-Ivy

Fill out my online form.

How to Create a Meal Plan For Your Week

meal planning

One of the things I love to do on Sundays is meal plan. Why on Sundays? Sundays are my day for rest and self-reflection. I plan my week of workouts, food, and business on Sundays to prepare for the week ahead.

If you fail to plan, you are planning to FAIL! I’m telling you that from personal experience. When I started my transformation, I was super excited about the workout and put the nutrition aspect aside. I thought I could out-exercise my diet!! I thought if I ate whole grain bread instead of white bread that I was going to get results. Guess what?? At the end of thirty days, I didn’t actually get the results I wanted. I was frustrated, but smart enough to know that nutrition was going to be 80% of my actual results.  I realized I was missing a key piece in my personal transformation.

I began to plan and prep. What I’m sharing with you is what I do and what works for me. It won’t be the same for you. You might choose to plan on your day off, and that might be a Monday or a Tuesday. Maybe you only want to plan one day at a time, instead of 5 or 7. The bottom line is that you’re planning ahead and you find out what works for you. If you don’t, things will come up, you won’t feel like cooking, or you’ll be missing ingredients. That’s when you’ll end up making bad choices.

So let’s dive into this. You can get on the meal plan wagon with me!! Start by creating a meal plan template in Excel. It’s super easy, I just make a chart with the days of the week and my workout, breakfast, morning snack, lunch, afternoon snack, dinner, and evening snack. Below is an example of my blank meal template.

 

When you’re first starting out, don’t make all new recipes. You are going to burn yourself out by cooking a new recipe every day of the week. Think of what you can repeat and what you can create extras of!!

One of the most important parts of meal planning is thinking about your obstacles for the week. If you’re leaving for travel, think ahead. If you have a date scheduled, it’s okay to schedule in one cheat meal per week. Cheat meals are not meant to be over the top, but you can say “I’m going to have my glass of wine, say no to the bread, have a salad with a healthy meat and side and then have my dessert.” Pick and choose your battles. If you have too many cheat meals, you’ll sacrifice your progress and find yourself frustrated that it’s taking longer to reach your goals.

Let’s get to planning! For me, I have shakeology every morning for breakfast. I add only water to mine, so I have a grocery list that I’ll start making with the ingredients I’ll need for the meals I’m planning out. A lot of times I’m meal planning and in the kitchen checking out the pantry or I’ll make my grocery list and then go look and see what we have in the pantry. When you’re done, you’ll have a week of meals planned and a grocery list with every item that you’ll need.

With clean eating, the goal is to eat every 2-4 hours in order to keep your metabolism fired up. For a snack, I usually pair some sort of protein or good fat with a carb or fruit or veggie. For example I’ll have an apple and 12 unsalted cashews.

Lunch for me is usually leftovers. Last night we made salmon, so I’ll have some of those and then half a baked sweet potato and maybe some steamed green beans.

For an afternoon snack, I’ll have 1 cup cucumbers and 1 blue container of hummus.

Dinner is where people get stuck. People freak out and think they have to research fancy and complex recipes which leads people to feel overwhelmed. In the beginning, don’t worry about fancy recipes with lots of ingredients. Keep it basic. I’m going to have Mahi Mahi seasoned with olive oil and lime juice, half a baked sweet potato, and grilled asparagus. I’ll bake extra potatoes tonight to warm up throughout the week.

After dinner is usually when my sweet tooth hits. My kids might want to go out for ice cream, so I’ll drink another Shakeology to curb my cravings.

There you have it! It’s nothing fancy, but it’s done. Maybe you’re a creature of habit and can eat the same snacks every day. Maybe tomorrow you want celery or red peppers. For dinner, you could have stir fry shrimp for dinner with carrots, peppers, onions, broccoli and brown rice.

shrimp fajitas

 

If you’re ready to start trying new recipes, check out the clean recipes on my site!! A lot of times I’ll use my own blog as a resource for recipes. You can even print them off or download them as a PDFs. Another great resource is Pinterest. Search for “clean eating recipes” and see what you can find!

When I meal plan, I’ll sit down and do the entire week. Then I’ve got my grocery list and my completed meal plan. The plan goes on the fridge and I head to the store to get the ingredients on my list. Sometimes I’ll prep and cut veggies or portion out containers so it’s easy to grab snacks throughout the week.

Is it always going to go as planned? Definitely not. You can switch meals around and eat them on different days. I’m flexible enough to go with the flow but know that I have a plan and food is already in the house. If I don’t want flank steak tomorrow, I’ll swap it out for Tuesday’s shrimp stir fry and feel comfortable knowing I have all the ingredients at home.

Meal planning is one thing that took me a little while to get the hang of. Now it only takes me 5 or 10 minutes to get my planning done for the week!! Let me know if you have any questions in the comments section and happy meal planning!

 

If you would like more support and accountability with starting your fitness and nutrition journey join my next group!  Complete the application below and I will contact you in the next 24 hours with the details.

Slow Cooker Dog Food

I started cooking for Rocco and Teddy because each time I fed them, they always seemed like they were choking the food down, and when they weren’t all that hungry, they preferred to just skip their meals together. I brushed it off and  I did the human-like thing and blamed it on taste.  More and more they begged and begged for their treats.

So, to cut costs, and provide them with completely healthy, all-natural food, I decided to make my own. {Please consult your veterinarian to discuss what specific dietary and nutritional needs your dog has before changing his diet}.

Ingredients:

* This can be made using many many variations, this is what I chose for this specific recipe but I’ve also make it with pork and beef. I’ve added broccoli and spinach in different batches as well. You can check out one of my alternate recipes here. It makes 1 week of food for my 50lb and 14lb dogs, who get fed twice a day, and together with their multivitamin and treats, they get all their necessary protein, carbs, and fats.

– 2 1/2-3 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs and breasts
– 1 sweet potato, cubed
– 2 carrots, sliced
– 2 c. frozen green beans
– 2 c. frozen peas
– 1 large or 2 med apples, cored and cubed (no seeds!!)
– 1 can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
– 2 tbsp coconut oil

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Directions:

1. Place meat in the crockpot and add water so that it just covers the chicken. Then, add potato, carrots, kidney beans, green beans, and apple.

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2. Cook on low for 8-9 hours, when it is about finished, add the frozen peas and cook for another 30 minutes.

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3. When finished, drain off excess liquid, add coconut oil, and stir to mash.

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4. When cooled, scoop daily servings into individual ziploc bags and freeze. Each night, remove one bag from the freezer and place in the fridge to defrost overnight.

This batch makes 1 week of food for my dogs. I mix in a multivitamin as well, for some added calcium.

If your dog loves this recipe, check out an alternate version here!

Not only is it all-natural, healthy, and fresh, they LOVE it! They race to the bowl when I set it down and licks it CLEAN!

xo-Ivy Johnson

5 SIMPLE RULES FOR WORK FROM HOME SUCCESS

For so many of us, it’s the holy grail.
 
We dream of leaving our day jobs and pursuing our passions. We envision a world of instagram-worthy vignettes… of lattes and lunch meetings, of yoga pants and a perfectly styled home office. Then reality strikes. Our dream comes true and we’re left on our own, in a messy house, with 2 dogs taking ownership of our furniture (“THIS IS WHY WE CAN’T HAVE NICE THINGS!”) and a spouse asking why the laundry was left wet in the washer for two days. (Whoops.) You haven’t showered in 36 hours and your email inbox is overflowing. This is not the life you imagined and now you’re left wondering if you made a huge mistake.
 
Work from home warriors… I’ve got your back. Press pause on the negative track that’s looping through your mind. Just because Pinterest lied to you doesn’t mean all hope is lost! Working from home can be tricky, add in a roommate, spouse, pets or kids and you’re bound to feel like there’s no hope for any productivity. I’ve been working from home for almost 4 years now and I’ve put together 5 simple rules you can put into practice today to help you find some serenity now. Here they are, in no particular order:
 
1. Create Office Hours and Stick to Them: There will always be times when you’re on a deadline or when you get behind or when something urgent comes up that you must attend to late at night but for the most part, anything that comes in after 7pm can wait till 9am the next day. While quick responses are an important part of customer service, setting boundaries around yourself is an important part of maintaining your sanity, cultivating healthy client interactions, and avoiding long term burnout. You cannot be available to your clients and customers 100% of the time. It’s not healthy for you or for your business. Set boundaries. I personally like to work late at night because it’s when I feel creative. But I take weekends completely off and I have family time from 7-9pm every evening.
 
2. Phones and Email OFF, Not Away: If you can hear the *ding* of your work email every 2 seconds while you are trying to enjoy dinner with your family, you are going to be distracted and eventually your curiosity (cough, anxiety, cough) will get the best of you. You’ll want to go see what’s come in. It’s better to turn your email program completely off after hours. My phone lives on silent actually because I have set times to work on email/messages and if I hear the dings all day it distracts me from my other tasks. If the thought of this sends your heart racing, remind yourself that there’s always room for emergency exceptions but for the most part, being “on call” to your messages will kill your productivity and your creativity.
 
3. Manage Expectations Like it’s Your Job: Almost every time I have any sort of bump in the road with a client or customer, it is because I didn’t do a good job of managing expectations with them. What does that mean? It means that you need to be very clear about what people can and should expect from you and what they cannot expect from you. Be up front with what they can expect, what you expect, your availability, etc. And if something goes off track, keep them in the loop! People are always happy when they know what to expect. They get nervous and frustrated when they feel left in the dark. Communicate expectations effectively and you’ll save yourself a lot of trouble.
 
4. Create a Harmonious Space: Whatever your workspace is, whether it’s a loft straight out of Dwell magazine or your perfectly worn in favorite spot on the sofa with your laptop on your lap, make it a harmonious space. You will work better and more efficiently, you will feel less stressed, and you’ll get more done in less time. I’m telling you, it works. What does that mean for me? It means cleaning up clutter for 5-10 minutes before I sit down to work. It means having coffee or a cup of ice water nearby. And it means lighting a favorite candle, opening windows for natural light, or listening to a relaxing playlist.
 
5. Get Good at Being Interrupted: If you work from home, chances are you’re going to be interrupted. A bunch. And if you work from home with a spouse or kids around this goes from “chance” to “inevitability”. While it can be super frustrating to deal with, if you can practice being good at getting interrupted you’ll save yourself a lot of stress. What does it mean to be good at being interrupted? It means that you are able to roll with what each day brings you but also that you can be interrupted, deal with it positively, and then jump back into focused tasks. Babies, roommates, spouses, pets, and life all throw interruptions at you all day long. The better you are at dealing with them, the less stressful your day to day life will be. Be thankful that you have the lifestyle and ability to let you experience and handle these interruptions and practice gratitude instead of frustrations. Everyone (including you) will be much happier!
xo-Ivy Johnson

My Super-Simple All-Natural Skincare & Beauty Routine

 

A lot of readers ask me for all the deets on all the things I put on my face. If you’ve been around these parts before, you’ll know this is because I suffered from some serious melasma my early 30s. During this time, I spent a small fortune on dermo appointments and skincare products, wasted countless hours orchestrating.

I’ve dubbed this mask the “blackhead busting blackout” mask since 1) its ingredients clarify the skin by pulling dirt from pores and thereby helping to eliminate blackheads, and 2) it’s as black as the night sky.

Or should I just say that it’s as black as charcoal (activated charcoal, to be specific), one of its main ingredients? I suppose that would make more sense.

 

 

Activated charcoal is similar to common charcoal, but is made specifically for medicinal use and to be very porous (so no, you can’t use regular ol’ BBQing charcoal for this recipe!). These pores allow activated charcoal to trap impurities. For this reason, activated charcoal is used to treat poisonings, intestinal gas, nausea, and bile flow issues (cholestasis) during pregnancy. But activated charcoal also works wonders for the skin when applied topically: it keeps skin clear by acting as a magnet to draw dirt out of pores.

Bentonite clay also acts as a magnet to draw dirt from the pores. High-quality bentonite clay can be ingested to pull toxins from the body. When applied topically, it absorbs toxins, draws out blackheads, and kills acne-causing bacteria.

So let’s get to it!

DIY all-natural blackhead busting blackout mask:

Ingredients

  • 2 capsules of activated charcoal (approximately 0.2 grams) opened and emptied. To open gelatin capsules, simply twist the two halves and gently pull them apart as in the picture below.
  • 1/2 teaspoon of bentonite clay
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of water

 

 

 

 

Directions:

Mix* all of the ingredients together into a smooth paste, and spot test the mask on your cheek or underside of your wrist to make sure that you do not have any adverse reactions. Wash face with a mild cleanser and pat partially dry (so that it is not dripping wet, yet moist). Apply the mask evenly avoiding the delicate skin around your eyes and lips, and let sit until dry, about 7-10 minutes. As the mask dries, it feels tight on the skin, which can sometimes feel a little itchy (if you start to feel uncomfortable, wash the mask off).  After the mask dries, wash it off, pat face gently with a clean towel, and let the skin breath or apply a mild all-natural moisturizer (I usually just apply jojoba oil to any areas that are prone to dryness).

That’s it! Easy-peasy as always.

*Be sure to stir this mixture with a plastic or wooden spoon, as both charcoal and clay pull toxins from metals. Also be sure to store your clay in a non-metal container.

If you have any questions, feel free to email me.

xo-Ivy Johnson

We all love lemonade – it’s the perfect refreshing beverage throughout Spring and Summer.

 

But most traditional lemonades are loaded with sugar and calories and are definitely not the healthiest option.  This version cuts out the traditional refined sugar and replaces it with a small amount of coconut sugar, which has a much lower glycemic index.

It also puts the focus on ginger and turmeric, which give amazing flavor and colour to the lemonade along with aiding digestion and providing immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory benefits.

Rather than being a sugary indulgence, this lemonade is a health drink you can enjoy and feel good about imbibing.

Ingredients:

200 ml water

4 inches, fresh turmeric root, peeled and sliced or 1 tablspoon dried turmeric.

4 inches fresh ginger root, peeled and sliced

4 tablespoons coconut sugar

4-6 lemons, juiced (about 200 ml juice)

large handful of ice cubes

2 lemons, sliced to serve

800 ml cold still water, or sparkling water if you like a bubbly twist.

Method:

Place the sliced turmeric root and ginger root in a sauce pan and cover with 200 ml water.

Add in the coconut sugar and bring to a boil

Reduce heat, and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the mixture has extracted the color and flavor of the turmeric and ginger.

Remove from the heat and cool

Juice the lemons, and pour into a pitcher

Add in the cooled ginger and turmeric mixture and stir to combine. You can strain out the pieces of ginger and turmeric, but I simply leave them in.

Pour the remaining cold water (or sparkling if you like) and stir to combine.

Add the slices of lemon into the pitcher and stir

To serve, add ice cubes to the pitcher if you think you will drink the whole pitcher right away. Otherwise add ice to each glass.

xo-Ivy Johnson

SHRIMP CEVICHE SALAD

Shrimp Ceviche Salad
 
PREP TIME
TOTAL TIME
Serves: 2 servings
INGREDIENTS
  • 1 ½ cups seeded and chopped cucumber
  • 1 ½ cups chopped green apple
  • Meat of 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 cup chopped cooked shrimp
  • ¼ cup finely chopped parsley
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped mint
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Mix all ingredients together in a serving bowl. Refrigerate for at least two hours to let flavors marry. Stir well before serving.

TRUST THE TIMING OF YOUR LIFE

So today I wanted to share with you a little something which really resonated with me after reading a really great article.

It’s about being in a place you don’t want to be in, but knowing that you aren’t any less of anything because you aren’t where you want to be or “should” be according to yourself or everyone else. Life happens, sickness happens. I now know I am exactly where I should be. My purpose and my reasoning for going through this will be revealed to me when the timing is right for ME. When it it’s supposed to happen for me.

All you can do in life is have a bit of trust and faith in life even when things aren’t going as planned. Sometimes you just have to trust the timing of your life, surrender to the shit and painful circumstance and know that this is just where you are meant to be at this moment in time. It doesn’t mean you are behind in life, it means that this is where you are meant to be. You cant control it no matter how hard you try and it just might be preparing you for something extraordinary when the time is right and perfect for YOU and you’ve learnt the lessons life wants to teach you.

Life doesn’t have to be a certain way, it’s your human experience and your journey. No one life path or circumstance are more “right” or “on time” than another. It’s your own individual story. Give yourself permission to be where you are and who you are in this moment.

Perhaps it’s preparing you for where you will end up and who you were actually meant to be all along – trust it and believe in it!!

 

Here are a few of my favorite parts

  • “If it’s not the time, its just not the fucking time. You need to give yourself permission to be a human being.”
  • “…We can’t control it. We have to just let it be, to take a fucking step back for a moment, stop beating ourselves up into oblivion, and to let the cogs turn as they will. One day, this moment will make sense. Trust that.”

 

You can read the article below:.

TO ANYONE WHO THINKS THEY’RE FALLING BEHIND

DECADENT CHIA PUDDING, THREE WAYS

I’ve been looking for some Paleo treats I could have on hand and I stumbled upon Chia Pudding and I was intrigued. I’ll be honest, I’ve been skeptical of chia seed puddings. Honestly, they seemed a little weird to me. And how yummy could they be, right? Well, I picked up a big bag of chia seeds at the store on sale and decided that now was as good a time as ever to figure it out for myself!

It took me a few tries to get my ratios right and then another try to two to find a recipe I like that was still “clean” but I think I’ve got three options for you that you are going to lose your mind over! I have been making and eating these every day and the cool thing is that chia seeds are actually incredible for you so this is totally a guilt-free dessert!
First though let me tell you a little bit about Chia. Chia seeds are actually a member of the mint family and they were a staple in the diets of the ancient Aztec and Mayan civilizations! The word “chia” even translates to “strength” in ancient Mayan. Chia seeds are packed with omega 3 fatty acids, fiber, antioxidants, minerals, they can be digested whole, they help you feel fuller longer, and they can even help regulate blood sugar and help you stay hydrated!  When they get wet, they form a gel which is why they can make such awesome “pudding”!

The hardest part about chia pudding (which is being over dramatic because there’s honestly nothing difficult about making chia pudding, hahahahha!) is getting your ratio right! Well, lucky you, because I did the hard work for you and discovered that the magic chia pudding ratio is 1 cup of liquid to 3 tablespoons of chia seeds! Armed with this knowledge you are now basically limitless! There are a million options for you! But if that overwhelms you, and you like to be told exactly what to do, here’s my favorite three pudding recipes for your sweet tooth! All inspired by some of my favorite goodies…

I know right? And the crazy thing? This really tastes like brownie batter! I like to mix up my liquid in the blender first to combine all the flavors in a perfectly mixed way before adding my seeds so toss all the ingredients except seeds into the blender first then pour it into our jar, then add your seeds. Easy peasy! We’re also gonna whip this one up at the end to make it more like mousse than pudding, just trust me, you’ll love it! I like to use mason jars to store my pudding till it sets but you can use anything that seals well.

BROWNIE BATTER CHIA MOUSSE:
1 cup vanilla almond milk
1 heaping tsp pure cocoa powder
1 tbs vegan chocolate shakeology
1 tbs almond butter
1/8 tsp Himalayan sea salt
3 tbs chia seeds

Put everything except the chia seeds in your blender and blend till combined.
Pour into empty mason jar
Add chia seeds
(extra option: add some diced up dairy-free dark chocolate)Shake, shake, shake and put in the fridge
Shake the jar again 10 minutes later
Shake it again a half hour later
And in a few hours your pudding should look pudding-y and the seeds should be all plumped up
To make this less like pudding and more like mousse toss it back in the blender or use an immersion blender to whip it up! Enjoy cold!

Luckily maple syrup is paleo, so we get to keep that! And I don’t know about you but I LOVE the flavor of maple and cinnamon and creamy vanilla all mixed together. Reminds me of pancakes and french toast! Don’t skip the sea salt in this one! You want that tiny bit of bite to really make this flavor pop!

FRENCH TOAST CHIA PUDDING:
1 cup vanilla almond milk
1 tbs pure maple syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp Himalayan sea salt
3 tbs chia seeds

Put everything except the chia seeds in your blender and blend till combined.
Pour into empty mason jar
Add chia seeds
(extra option: drizzle a bit more maple syrup in, shhhh, I won’t tell!)Shake, shake, shake and put in the fridge
Shake the jar again 10 minutes later
Shake it again a half hour later
And in a few hours your chia pudding will be ready to enjoy! You can also make this the night before and let it set overnight! Easy peasy!

I saved my favorite for last. I know, I know, most of you are like “Ivy  how is brownie batter NOT your favorite?!” But honestly, I’m all about creamy caramel. And this was the first chia pudding recipe that I loved and it’s my standard go to when I want something sweet. It’s so yummy. And while the caramel extract and diced up chocolate is not exactly paleo, it’s worth the indulgence if you’re on the fence. What can I say, I like to live dangerously. 😉
CREAMY CARAMEL CHIA PUDDING:
1 cup vanilla almond milk + full fat coconut milk
1 tbs pure honey
a few drops caramel extract
1 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp Himalayan sea salt
1 tbs diced up dairy free dark chocolate chips
3 tbs chia seedsFill your cup measure almost to the top with vanilla almond milk
Then open a jar of coconut milk and finish filling the cup.
Put everything except the chia seeds in your blender and blend till combined.
Pour into empty mason jar
Add chia seeds
(extra option: drizzle a bit of goats milk caramel on top, totally not paleo, totally still worth it)
Shake, shake, shake and put in the fridge
Shake the jar again 10 minutes later
Shake it again a half hour later
And in a few hours your chia pudding will be ready to enjoy! You can also make this the night before and let it set overnight! Easy peasy!Let me know how you like it when you try it!

How to go Paleo in a balanced way!!

A common misconception about eating Paleo is that all you eat is meat all day every day. It’s easy to be confused. You see lots of meat-heavy dishes if you search for Paleo on Pinterest or google and this nutritional template is very popular among men who like the idea of a “meat and potatoes” type of mealplan. (Except white potatoes, aren’t paleo… sorry dudes.) But the key to the success (and nutritional benefits) of eating Paleo is like anything else: balance and moderation. Hunter/Gatherers didn’t live on bacon and french fries, and neither should you.

To make sure that I ate in a balanced way when I went Paleo, and how I suggest others begin their Paleo journey, I decided to enlist the help of the 21 Day Fix Mealplan that I’ve always loved so much!  (It’s also available from Beachbody under the name The Portion Fix now and comes with most Challenge Packs!) This plan gives you colored containers for each food group. You are allotted a certain number of servings of each container a day (based on your height/weight/activity/goals) and you just fill up the container and eat what fits. It’s so easy that I think every single person needs to abide by it! I digress…

I followed the color coded mealplan guidelines and TWEAKED them to work with Paleo guidelines! This helps me to step down into the paleo mealplan in a way that is super balanced making sure I still get enough veggies, fruits, carbs, and not too much protein or fats! What are those guidelines? Put very simply, you eat what you could hunt or gather back in the Paleolithic day. So… lean meats, fish, nuts, seeds, vegetables, and fruits. What is not accepted as Paleo?

FOODS TO AVOID ON THE PALEO TEMPLATE:
Refined Sugars & Artificial Sweeteners
Grains
Legumes
Artificial Ingredients
White Potatoes
Processed Foods (including Junk Food)
Hydrogenated Oils/Vegetable Oils
Alcohol

FRINGE FOODS

Dairy
White Potatoes
Cashews
Pseudograins (like buckwheat or quinoa)
Shakeology

Okay, let’s talk about these for a minute. Obviously, paleolithic man didn’t have sugar or sugar substitutes so those are easy to understand. Grains came with agriculture so those are out too. Legumes came with agriculture too so you’ll have to pass on the beans and peanuts. Processed foods weren’t around so count them out, same with vegetable and hydrogenated oils (if it says anything like “buttery spread” just don’t even touch it) and alcohol came later too. Now there are a few foods I like to call “fringe foods” which means that they are debated among Paleo participants. These are dairy, cashews, white potatoes, and pseudograins.

Why did I include Shakeology in the fringe foods? Well it’s because regular Shakeology contains whey protein. Which is technically a dairy derivative. Vegan Shakeology contains oat protein which is technically a grain derivative. In my opinion, either one is still waaaaaayyyyyy better for you than anything else you could do so the positives outweigh the fringe technicalities. I have stayed on it and still seen INCREDIBLE results since going paleo.

You will have to make your own decision regarding these items. People who subscribe to a paleo diet but eat dairy are called “Primal” if you want to do some research. The reason dairy is left out is because while animals were around, Paleolithic humans did not have the tools or capacity to be making anything like butter or cheeses or creams. White potatoes are a plant so why can’t you eat them? You can, obviously, no one is forcing you to do anything. But the reason they aren’t considered paleo is because of the labor involved in harvesting them. They are more likely a crop then something that Paleolithic humans stumbled upon. Also, if nothing else, they don’t have a lot of nutritional benefits so it’s worth it to avoid them. Cashews are a nut right? So why are they a problem? Technically, cashews are a legume (like peanuts) so to a strict Paleo person they’d be out. Make your own decision on this one. And lastly, pseudograins like quinoa and buckwheat. These are technically not grains, but they behave like them inside your body. So the choice is yours.

“What’s left?!”  You might be thinking. What can I eat? A LOT actually! Here’s some of my meals…

Okay, so maybe you’re thinking about giving this whole Paleo thing a try. But you’re so confused. Where do you start? How do you figure out what to eat? And how do stay balanced and avoid living on bacon, avocado, and steak alone? Don’t worry friends, I’ve got you covered! Here is a sample week’s mealplan using the Portion Fix plan as a guide. These are all meals I have eaten since going Paleo so you know they are actually good! This is based on my serving allowances in the Portion Fix. If you’re in a higher bracket and have more servings you would just either eat bigger meals or add in more food in your day. I wrote out each meal’s ingredients in the color container they would correspond to so you can easily see VISUALLY how to combine your containers into a day’s worth of amazing meals!

PALEO PANCAKES (just substitute almond meal/flour for cashew meal if you like)
DRESSING 1: combine 3 parts olive oil to 1 part balsamic vinegar
DRESSING 2: combine 3 parts olive oil to 1 part champagne vinegar, add in diced shallots, and pepper
DRESSING 3: combine 3 parts olive oil to 1 part champagne vinegar, add in some dill if you like

Now to make things even EASIER for you, I put together a grocery shopping list for you based off this mealplan (who loves ya?!) Just print it out and take it with you to the store. Now here’s the secret. Don’t feel chained to this. If you don’t like something I listed (like spinach) swap it out for something you do like (like spring mix). Make it work for YOU and your tastes.

I know, this still might seem overwhelming. And maybe you have questions? Have no fear! I’ll be hosting a live, free webinar digging more into my personal story with going paleo. I’ll be sharing my struggles with auto-immune, how paleo helped, and how EXACTLY I use this mealplan to do it in a balanced way. I’ll also be sharing how I fit physical activity into this and keep my energy levels up! I’ll even give you my TOP THREE TIPS for success in this process! I’d love to have you join me!

The webinar is scheduled for Monday, February 27 th at 7:30PM EST. But if you can’t make it, it will be recorded and left up for a few days so you can watch after. If you do hop on live though, you’ll have the chance to ask me questions as I go! Click the banner below to head to the event and RSVP so you get a reminder on the day of!

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Want to do this with my help, with the full color coded mealplan, my super weapon: shakeology, and a year’s access to EVERY workout program Beachbody has ever made? Let me hook you up with an All Access Pack in my March Challenge Group which will have a paleo focus! We’ll all be going through it together, sharing mealplans, recipes, etc to make it so much easier to make this transition and make it stick!  Choose from workouts like the 21 Day Fix, Piyo, Core De Force, or even yoga if you wanna keep it light! Daily motivation and accountability, and the opportunity to ask me questions as you go? You’re in luck! Click here to email me and let me know you want your name on the list! I’ll send you all the details!

xo-Ivy Johnson

IVELISE JOHNSON