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10-Minute Belly Fat Burner

High Knees

High knees give you the benefit of sprinting without the space requirements. They’re simple to do, just sprint on the spot, driving your knees and your hands upwards alternatively.

Boxing Jabs

Another great warm up method for your whole body. Whilst keeping light on your feet, rapidly punch your arms forward, shifting your weight around from foot to foot as you do so. This is meant to get you warm, so don’t worry too much about the perfect technique for the knock out!

Flutter Kicks

Flutter kicks are a simple way to give your hip flexors, lower abs and quads a workout.
1. Lie flat on your back on the floor or on a bench.
2. Lift both feet an inch or two in the air.
3. Tense your lower abs to raise one leg.
4. Alternate between raising each leg, lowering them to 1-2 inches above the ground. A flutter kick with both legs counts as one rep.

Mountain Climbers

1. Hold yourself in a high plank position, squeezing your core.
2. Raise your knee towards your elbows without changing your hip height or spine position, bringing your leg forward with it.
3. Fire your leg back into its original position. This is one rep.
4. Repeat rapidly with the other leg.

Plank Jacks

1. From a high plank position, tense your core and jump your legs apart as shown.
2. Repeat the reverse of this motion bringing your feet back together again, tensing your core. This is one rep.

Forward Lunge With Twist

Twisting with your lunges is a great way to hit your obliques, giving your great leg workout an added abs component making these a great belly fat reducer.
1. Placing your hands at the side of your head, lunge down in a standard forward lunge.
2. As you lunge, also engage your obliques to turn your torso to one side. Squeezing them for 2-3 seconds at the bottom of your lunge. This is one rep.
3. Repeat on the other side.

Tuck Jump

The tuck jump is a simple way to add some dynamic moves to your workout.
1. Place both feet slightly further than shoulder width apart.
2. Bend your knees slightly.
3. Explode upwards, pushing through your heels and swinging your arms to jump into the air.
4. Whilst airborne raise your knees up to your chest before returning them to below you to land. This is one rep.

High Plank Walk

This one can be a killer! This slowly cranks up the stress on your abs and is more difficult to hold than a standard plank, making it a great belly fat reducer.
1. Get into a high plank position.
2. Slowly walk your hands forward, one at a time.
3. Get your hands as far forward as you can without losing your neutral back position.
4. Hold for 2-3 seconds before walking you hands slowly back to the high plank position. This is one rep.

Plank Reach Through

1. Get into a push up position, with your hands on the floor below your shoulders, and your feet spaced slightly apart. Keep your spine in a neutral position.
2. Reach one arm out in front of you, tensing your core for stability.
3. Slowly tense your core and reach your arm under you, raising your hips at the same time as you tense your core.
4. Touch your opposite knee with your hand.
5. Return your arm to its initial position. This is one rep. Repeat on the other side.

Swimmers

Swimmers are a great way to work your whole body whilst giving your lower back a workout.
1. Lie on your stomach and squeeze your glutes as hard as you can, raising both legs off the ground.
2. Reach forwards with your arms, keeping your palms facing downwards a few inches above the ground.
3. Lift your alternate arm and leg up into the air, squeezing all of the muscles from your shoulders down to your glutes. This is one rep.
4. Repeat with the other arm rapidly.

Brazilian Booty Workout

1. Bulgarian Split Squat

bulgarian split squat

The split squat is a great exercise in the brazilian butt lift workout! It’s a tough one that builds serious booty.
1. Place the ball of one foot on a stable, elevated platform behind you. Put your weight mainly on your front leg that is in front of the platform. When you perform the squat your knee should be directly over your foot at your lowest point. This determines for far in front of the platform your foot should be.
2. Bend the knee of your front leg and lower yourself down into a single leg squat. Keep your core tight. Lower yourself until your knee is directly above your foot and your other knee is an inch or two above the floor. Hold for 2-3 seconds.
3. Squeeze your glutes, raising yourself back up to the starting position. This is one rep.
4. Repeat for the other leg.
Careful! Make sure to get the exercise right:

2. High Donkey Kicks

High Donkey Kicks

Try this variation of the donkey kick to increase the difficulty, add resistance for your glutes and work your shoulders.
1. Start on your hands and the balls of your feet, with your legs stretched out behind you and your back slightly rounded. Have your hands directly below your shoulders.
2. Squeeze your glute, kicking one leg backwards towards the sky with your leg straight, squeezing at the top for 2-3 seconds.
3. At the same time, push with your hands to push your body back with your leg.
4. Slowly return the leg until you’re on the balls of both feet, and pull your arms until your shoulders are over your hands again. This is one rep.
1. Repeat for the other leg.

3. Deadlift

Deadlift

Deadlifts are another keystone exercise that you really should master. They’re also the exercise in which you’ll likely lift the most weight, so they’re fun!
1. Place a barbell in front of you, and stand behind it with your shins touching the bar, with your feet hip width apart. Keep facing directly in front of you for the entire movement.
2. Lower yourself down, grabbing the bar just wider than your feet. Either have your palms facing backwards, or have one forwards and one backwards. This reverse grip helps prevent the bar from rolling, which may be an issue as you lift heavier weights.
3. Whilst holding the bar, squeeze your shoulder blade together and tighten your core. It is essential that you keep your spine in a straight, neutral position. Do not bend it when performing a deadlift. The deadlift is quite a straightforward movement, the difficulty comes in because you can easily injure your lower back if you’re not careful.
4. Squeeze your legs and power up through your heels. Raise the barbell against your shins, keeping it close to your centre.
5. As the bar raises to the level of your knees, move them back to continue lifting the bar up to your thighs. Squeezing your glutes at the top of the movement, but not leaning backwards (this is bar form).
6. Slowly lower the bar back down again, pushing your knees forwards as the bar passes lower than them. This is one rep.

Variation: Romanian Deadlift

Romanian Deadlift

The romanian deadlift is the variation we use for this brazilian butt lift workout. It is a great variation on the standard deadlift to really work your hamstrings and hit your lower glutes. Perform it in the same way as a standard deadlift, but don’t bend your knees. As you lean forwards, you will feel a stretch hamstring. As this builds, squeeze your hamstrings to bring your torso back upwards.
As with standard deadlifts, be extra careful to do them slowly and carefully. Do not arch or curve your back, you will instantly regret it.

4. Dumbbell Step Ups

Dumbbell Step Ups

Step ups are a great easy way to strengthen your quads and glutes, making them a great addition to our brazilian butt lift workout.
1. Find an elevated platform, bench or chair. Place one foot on the platform, making sure it is secure and firmly placed flat. Hold a dumbbell in each hand for added resistance.
2. Squeeze your quads in the raised leg to lift your body up and onto the platform.
3. Slowly release and lower yourself back down. This is one rep.
4. Repeat for the other leg.

5. Squat With Lateral Leg Raise

Squat With Lateral Leg Raise

This is a great dynamic movement to hit multiple muscle groups.
1. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, cleaned up to shoulder height. Perform a standard squat, lowering yourself to an inch or two above the ground.
2. Squeeze your glutes and hamstrings to send your torso upwards. As you’re almost standing straight again, lift up one leg to the side, squeezing your glutes, core and hip abductors.
3. Hold your leg at the top for 1-2 seconds before slowly lowering it down again. This is one rep.
4. Repeat for the other leg.

6. Bench Glute Raise

Bench Glute Raise

The glute raise is essentially a two legged donkey kick, adding variation to your brazilian butt lift workout.
1. Lie on your front on a bench, with your hips at the end so your feet can touch the floor whilst your legs are straight.
2. Lift your legs off the floor, keeping them bent at the knee.
3. Tense your glutes to raise both legs at once towards the sky. Squeeze at the top for 2-3 seconds.
4. Slowly lower your legs back down. This is one rep.

7. Lateral Lunge

Lateral Lunge

1. Start with your feet hip width apart, place your hands on your hips. Keep your back straight and your shoulder blades pulled together.
2. Send one leg out to your side, squatting down on it whilst providing support with your stationary leg and hands. Hold for 2-3 seconds.
3. Push back off your bent leg, returning to a standing position. This is one rep.
4. Repeat on the other side.

8. Glute Bridge to Leg Raise

Glute Bridge to Leg Raise

This variation of the glute bridge helps remove some stability whilst working your legs.
1. Perform a standard glute bridge.
2. At the top of the glute bridge, tense your hip flexors and abs, bringing one knee up until it’s directly above you.
3. Return your leg slowly back down to the ground. This is one rep.
4. Repeat with the other leg.

9. Pistol Squats

Pistol Squats

The pistol squat is the king of lower body, bodyweight exercises. It’s very difficult to master, but amazing at building leg strength and size without weights. Plus, it’s a great party trick!
1. Stand on one leg, getting you balance and making sure your weight is through your heel. Put your arms out straight in front of you, and raising your other leg so your knee is bent. Your raised leg will form a counterbalance to give you stability.
2. Really squeeze your core and the leg you’re standing on. Slowly bend the leg lowering your torso downwards. Take it slow.
3. At the lowest, your butt should be an inch or two off the ground and your other leg should be extended out straight in front of you.
4. Squeeze your leg again, slowly raising your body upwards again. This is one rep (congratulations)!
5. Repeat on the other leg.

One Leg Cable Kickback

One Leg Cable Kickback

The cable kickback similar to a glute raise, but allows you to finely control the resistance.
1. Adjust the cable machine so that it is on the bottom peg. Attach the ankle cuff to it and wrap the cuff around your ankle.
2. Place your other leg forward towards the machine, you may want to press your toes against it. Have a slight bend in this leg.
3. Place your arms against the pillar for stability.
4. Straighten your other leg and slowly move it back. If you feel this in your lower back, you’re lifting your leg too high. Squeeze your glutes at the top for 2-3 seconds.
5. Slowly lower your leg back down. This is one rep.
6. Repeat on the other side.

101 EASY Eco-Friendly Zero Waste Tips

101 EASY Eco-Friendly Zero Waste Tips

This post is designed to pull together as many SUPER simple sustainable living tips that you could start building into your life today. You’re unlikely to be able to do them ALL today, but you can sure make a good start. 

Generally, you just need a bit of commitment to a more eco-friendly, zero-waste life. 

This isn’t a check list of things you NEED to do, but more a huge collection of ideas to prompt you to think in less wasteful ways. There’s no one correct way to do this. 

Pick a few that resonate and build them in. If you were to add just 2 a week, you’d have ticked off all 101 by this time next year, and be living a far lower impact life. 

Every day we have a choice to make this world a little wasteful. What can you do today?

  1. Use bar soap instead of liquid soap, it tends to come with less packaging.
  2. Try canning to preserve food.
  3. Ask for no straw in your drink order when out.
  4. Buy food without packaging or minimal packaging.
  5. Ditch paper towels and use tea towels and rags.
  6. Plant a small garden.
  7. Check out your farmers market.
  8. Swap tea bags for loose leaf tea in a reusable strainer. 
  9. Try making tooth powder to avoid unrecyclable toothpaste tubes.
  10. Build a zero waste kit and put in the trunk of your car or carry it with you when you’ll be out so you’ll always be prepared. It doesn’t have to be large just a few items!
  11. Make dry shampoo to stretch between washes.
  12. Make your own deodorant.
  13. Beware of greenwashing, always do your research.
  14. Make homemade gifts to give to friends and family.
  15. Eat more vegetables and legumes.
  16. Switch from a plastic disposable razor to a metal safety razor.
  17. Avoid receipts when out, ask if one has to be printed. Sometimes they do, but not always!
  18. Find your local cobbler to repair tired shoes.
  19. Line dry a load instead of using the dryer.
  20. Vote with your dollars for a sustainable future.
  21. Most sunscreen causes coral bleaching, go coral friendly!
  22. Surround yourself with tools and items that are meant to last a lifetime. Try to only buy objects once.
  23. Learn how to freeze your food without plastic so it doesn’t go to waste.
  24. Buy more locally made goods.
  25. Repair something when it breaks.
  26. If you’re looking for a specialty item, like camping gear or an extra table for a party, ask a friend if you can borrow one before making a purchase.
  27. Surround yourself with items that serve multiple purposes to streamline and cut excess junk.
  28. Try elderberry syrup if you feel a cold coming on instead of immediately reaching for a plastic pill bottle.
  29. Get a library card to support your local sharing economy.
  30. Bring reusable produce bags for fruits and veggies.
  31. Meal plan to avoid food waste.
  32. Get rid of pests naturally.
  33. Swap disposable pads and tampons for cloth pads or a menstrual cup.
  34. Try to avoid palm oil.
  35. Repurpose stale bread.
  36. Always say no thank you to free promotional items. They tend to be cheap and break easily.
  37. Try making your own lotion.
  38. Look into collecting rainwater or a greywater system.
  39. Try homemade mouthwash.
  40. Look into tree-free TP.
  41. Learn how to repair a button or hem to extend the life of your clothing.
  42. Serve dinner with cloth napkins.
  43. Wrap presents in newsprint or not at all!
  44. Learn where to properly dispose of items like gift cards, old cell phones, batteries and unusable cords can be turned in at best buy etc.
  45. Pick up litter when you’re out and dispose of it properly.
  46. Ditch plastic q-tips for plastic-free or reusable.
  47. Try Wheatless Wednesdays to cut back on intensive grain farming.
  48. Avoid junk mail by placing a sticker on your box or going to dmachoice.org
  49. Ask yourself if you truly need it before making any purchases.
  50. Focus on experiences rather than things.
  51. Ditch sponges in lieu of compostable scrubs or brushes.
  52. Use both sides of the paper!
  53. Keep a stocked pantry to avoid getting takeout on busy nights.
  54. Always run a full dishwasher or load of clothes.
  55. If it’s a 30 minute or less walk, get outside instead of driving.
  56. Ditch plastic shower loofahs for a real loofah or a bamboo bath brush.
  57. Reduce your meat consumption. If you’re not ready to go vegetarian start small: try Meatless Monday, weekday vegetarian, or even weekday vegan.
  58. Try your hand at an easy all-purpose cleaning spray.
  59. Find your local tailor to help with clothing repairs.
  60. Join a community garden.
  61. Go paperless for all your bills!
  62. Make your morning cup of coffee with a french press or pour over with a reusable filter to avoid extra waste.
  63. Ask for no plastic and reused packaging materials for online orders.
  64. Start a backyard compost.
  65. Unplug electronics when not in use.
  66. Try cloth diapering.
  67. Swap your plastic toothbrush for a bamboo toothbrush.
  68. Donate unused items in good condition to support the second-hand market.
  69. Ditch tissues for handkerchiefs.
  70. Turn old sheets and towels into handkerchiefs, rags, napkins, and cloth produce bags.
  71. Wash clothes when they are actually dirty, instead of after only one wear.
  72. Commit to bringing your reusable bags to the store. If you don’t have them, turn around and go get them! After forgetting them once, you won’t do it again.
  73. Instead of buying something when you’re having a bad day, do something. I.e. go on a walk, take a yoga class, meet up with a friend.
  74. Change light bulbs to LEDs.
  75. Don’t buy anything impulsively!
  76. Be mindful when using technology.
  77. Put on a sweater and socks before turning up the heat.
  78. Get some houseplants at a local nursery to purify your air, don’t forget to return the little plastic pots!
  79. Swap little plastic chapstick tubes for DIY lip balm.
  80. Know where everything you buy comes from whether it be food, clothing, or other household goods
  81. Pack your lunch instead of eating out every day.
  82. Bring your own container for to-go food and leftovers.
  83. Bring your own to-go cup when getting coffee on the run.
  84. Store your food properly to make it last longer.
  85. Learn to regrow kitchen scraps.
  86. Ask for a real mug at the coffee shop when staying in.
  87. Open a window to cool down your home or air it out.
  88. Think second-hand first when purchasing something.
  89. Pick up a lonely banana.
  90. Don’t leave your house without a full reusable water bottle.
  91. Turn the water off while brushing your teeth.
  92. Make your own face mask from stuff in your pantry.
  93. Make your own febreze spray to freshen your room for pennies!
  94. Look into rechargeable batteries instead of disposables.
  95. Keep a bucket in the shower to water plants or flush the toilet.
  96. Swap cotton rounds for reusable rounds.
  97. Wash your clothes in cold water when you can.
  98. Swap don’t shop! Host a clothing swap with friends.
  99. Try to shrink the amount you recycle. Zero waste is about recycling less not more.
  100. Take public transit if available or carpool.
  101. Look at installing a bidet attachment.

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Entrepreneur Credits Alcohol-Free Plant-Based Lifestyle For Weight Loss Transformation

Entrepreneur Credits Alcohol-Free Plant-Based Lifestyle For Weight Loss Transformation

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A lot can change in a year 🖤

A post shared by Athena Simpson (@athena.simpson) on

A plant-based entrepreneur has spoken out about how being plant-based – and ditching alcohol – transformed her life.

Athena Simpson, a business and marketing optimizer, speaker, writer, and aspiring aerial artist, says she was an ‘unhappy, unhealthy, workaholic’.

While following a plant-based diet, she ditched alcohol, and says she has transformed into a healthy, happy, strong, thriving nomadic entrepreneur.

Losing weight

“Everyone asks me how I lost weight,” Simpson told Plant Based News. “I feel like I cheated since it was so easy for me. I tried a no alcohol challenge to give myself a fresh start to 2019 and I had no idea how life-changing it would be. I was already vegan so I didn’t do anything to change my diet, in fact, I explicitly chose not to put any pressure on myself to change the way I ate.

“I didn’t lose anything for the first six weeks, and then it started melting off. Seven or eight months later, I had lost three jean sizes (44lbs/20kg), gained confidence and loved looking at myself in the mirror but more importantly, was so impressed by what my body was capable of.”

She says a plant-based diet and alcohol-free lifestyle has made her stronger than ever (Photo: Supplied to Plant Based News)
She says a plant-based diet and alcohol-free lifestyle has made her stronger than ever (Photo: Supplied to Plant Based News)

Energy

As a result of eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables, and not drinking alcohol, Simpson found she had an excess of energy – which inspired her to get more active. She believes her plant-based diet has helped with recovery when it comes to physical exercise.

“I got into aerial silks and did that about three times a week,” she said. “I started walking to the train instead of taking the bus and doing a bit of yoga here and there. I didn’t care about losing weight, I wanted to get strong. Silks are one of the most physically demanding activities I’ve ever done, and starting at the age of 35 was certainly a challenge.

“I was never ‘strong’ growing up and now I’m the strongest I’ve ever been in my life. I think having a vegan diet helped me get stronger faster. Since going vegan four and a half years ago I noticed my recovery time was quicker, aches and pains were less because of reduced inflammation and I felt an overall improvement in my health.

“I would rarely get sick and when I did it was usually gone in a few days. I hadn’t even registered with a GP in almost four years. So when I removed booze, it was like I became a superhuman.”

Eating

According to Simpson, people are often surprised by the volume of food she eats. When she first ditched alcohol and started to exercise, her appetite reduced, but she soon realized she wasn’t eating enough to maintain her increased activity level.

“I never craved sugar before but a few months into not drinking anymore and I started craving sugar (this usually happens at the beginning of the detox period),” she said. “I came to realize is that I wasn’t eating enough calories for the amount of increased exercise I was doing. So I started eating more calorie-dense meals and the cravings stopped and my appetite came back.

“When people see how much I eat they can’t really believe that I’ve managed to lose weight. If I didn’t exercise I don’t think I’d be this hungry but being alcohol-free and plant-based means I can pretty much eat whatever I want and keep the weight off.

“I don’t eat tons of processed vegan junk food, but when I want some I don’t stop myself. I see a lot of people giving up booze and frustrated they aren’t losing weight, the difference between them and me is usually a plant-based diet.”

Bassem Youssef Shares Amazing Plant-Based Transformation With His 3.4 Million Followers

Bassem Youssef Shares Amazing Plant-Based Transformation With His 3.4 Million Followers

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This month I will be 46 years old . Do I have a perfect body? No?Do I have flaws ? Absolutely . But I work on it and I try to improve everyday . The difference between these two photos are 6 years . I was younger but not healthy . I had bad eating habits . Do I look good everyday ? No , but I try within my travels and my busy life and being a father to make it . I am trying to tell people you can still be healthy and athletic on a good plant based diet . There will always be trolls out there and there will always be people who put you down and tell you that you are not good enough while sitting on their fat asses trolling other people. There are people who are half my age and have an opinion about what I eat and how I look while they are aging terribly . Don’t be bothered by those trolls . Work on yourself . I am not there yet , but I am still working and mean while I am enjoying my journey . Enjoy yours . الفرق بين الصورتين ٦ سنين و أسلوب حياة مختلف . انا في الصورة اللي على اليمين كنت ست سنين اصغر من النهاردة . هل انا في احسن جسم دلوقتي ؟ لا ؟ بس كل يوم باقوم و باجتهاد و باحسن من نفسي . انا الشهر ده حتم ٤٦ سنة . و في وسط السفر الكتير و مسؤليات الحياة اليومية كأب لطفلين الموضوع مش سهل ، بس بحاول و بحاول اوري الناس انك ممكن تغير من اُسلوب اكلم و تاكل نباتات اكتر. و برضة تبقى صحتك حلوة . و مع ذلك تلاقي واحد في نص عمري و بيلقح كلام سخيف و هو نفسه مدلدل و صحته وحشه و بيوصل لل ٣٥ و بيبقى صحته و جسمه اكبر منه بعشر سنين . اشتغل على نفسك ، ما تبصش لحد تاني و انبسط بالرحلة

A post shared by Dr/ Satirist/Vegan (@bassem) on

Comedian, physician, surgeon and TV host Bassem Youssef has revealed the heartbreaking reason he adopted a plant-based diet – and how whole foods have changed his life.

Youssef, who has been dubbed the ‘Jon Stewart of the Arab World’, recently shared his physical transformation with his 3.4 million Instagram followers.

In recent years, the doctor has dropped pounds, become more active, and improved his general overall health on a whole foods plant-based diet.

Going plant-based

Youssef told PBN that he originally went plant-based after a friend of his was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

“I was devastated,” he told PBN. “Because I knew as a doctor that MS is the bogeyman of medicine.”

His friend started looking at nutrition, watching documentaries like Forks Over Knives, and told Youssef about the work of plant-based doctors, like Dr. Greger and Dr. Esselstyn among others

“That’s what made me make the switch, and I instantly felt much better,” he told PBN. “It was a great experience, not because of losing weight, but because of the byproducts of losing weight.”

Feeling the difference

These primarily included becoming more active, and having more energy. He added: “I feel good. You feel the difference if you cheat some days, if you’re traveling for example, and you can’t find any options, you feel the bloat, and it stays there. I’m much more energetic, I have a much better and more comfortable life, no more constipation.”

As part of his new lifestyle, Youssef undertakes physical activity. He revealed: “I am very active. I| work out five to six times a week. I recently increased my workouts, changed it a little bit – I do a lot of lifting.”

‘Enjoying my journey’

Discussing his plant-based transformation on Instagram, Youssef shared images of himself, taken six years apart. He wrote: “This month I will be 46 years old. Do I have a perfect body? No? Do I have flaws? Absolutely. But I work on it and I try to improve everyday.

“The difference between these two photos is six years. I was younger but not healthy. I had bad eating habits. Do I look good every day? No, but I try within my travels and my busy life and being a father to make it. I am trying to tell people you can still be healthy and athletic on a good plant-based diet.

“There will always be trolls out there and there will always be people who put you down and tell you that you are not good enough while sitting on their fat asses trolling other people. There are people who are half my age and have an opinion about what I eat and how I look while they are aging terribly. Don’t be bothered by those trolls. Work on yourself. I am not there yet, but I am still working and meanwhile, I am enjoying my journey. Enjoy yours.”

🥦 Chronic Dieter Finally Transforms Physique On High-Carb Plant-Based Diet

🥦 Chronic Dieter Finally Transforms Physique On High-Carb Plant-Based Diet

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Go Jill! 🤯 You’re a ROCKSTAR! Read Jill’s powerful journey👇🏽 Before/After 12 week transformation program with @plantbasedben . So, I've been on a journey. I was unhappy with how I looked & felt & wanted to make a change. I've been food obsessed for decades, & believed I knew a lot about how to be healthy. I even completed a prominent health coaching program some years ago & felt I had the tools to not only reach my goals, but also to help others reach theirs. . I was wrong. . I started my plant based journey 8 years ago after watching @forksoverknives , 100% in on the health benefits. Unfortunately, I gained weight because I fell into the trap of eating processed vegan junk food after formerly eating a pretty clean diet, but one that included chicken, fish, & eggs. . A colleague had exposed me to the animal cruelty aspect of industrialized factory farming through a @peta video titled #themeatyoueat and I knew I would never go back to eating chicken (or start cows or pigs), but I did go back to fish & eggs for a couple of years. It wasn't until I attended an @engine2diet weekend workshop that I was introduced to the documentary @cowspiracy when I learned of the environmental impact of the industrialized farming & fishing industries that I decided I had to commit myself to a lifelong change to a plant-based diet. . I've been plant-based for the last 5 or so years, & do my best to live a 100% vegan lifestyle, but I was on a rollercoaster weight ride due to an overly restrictive diet because of food fads I bought into from a lifelong struggle with body image & dysmorphia (you know, the "bad" foods like wheat, grains, soy, lectins, ANY carbs, etc.), & even adopted a raw diet with great weight loss success, followed by bingeing & weight gain. . I wanted to find a balanced way of eating while maintaining my plant-based diet, & a fitness program that was sustainable & would help me reach my goals in my 40s. I found @plantbasedben on IG, & once we talked I knew I had found the perfect coach. . Through eating MORE foods, counting macros, & following a consistent exercise regimen, I've reached my goals, & am over the moon excited to be posting these result!

A post shared by Plant Based Ben Ⓥ (@plantbasedben) on

A chronic dieter has revealed how she stopped yo-yo dieting and got over her fear of carbs by following a whole food, plant-based diet.

41-year-old Jill Welch, from Austin in Texas, was originally inspired to go plant-based around eight years ago after a colleague invited her to a private screening of health documentary Forks Over Knives.

According to Welch, whose weight had been yo-yoing by around 20lb over the last few years, watching the film flicked a switch in her head, and she instantly wanted to try a whole-food, plant-based diet. But she revealed that her first attempt at transitioning her diet ‘failed miserably’.

‘Really confused’

“When I went plant-based, I was really confused about how to eat because I was so used to having this meat-based entree, which for me was never beef or pork, but poultry or fish,” she told Plant Based News.

“Seafood was always my favorite. And so, I was so used to having this animal-based protein as an entree and then some vegetable sides. So when I went plant-based, I didn’t know how to structure my meals anymore.

“And I ended up gaining weight, because I started eating things that I didn’t eat before, a lot of filler food-type stuff. And so, I didn’t want to be the person who went plant-based and gained weight. I did not bring poultry back into the mix, but I did bring seafood back into the mix for about the next two years and eggs, never dairy because I just can’t process dairy.”

Another try

After following this pescatarian-style diet for a few years, Welch was inspired to give plant-based another go after watching environmental documentary Cowspiracy, saying that the health and environmental impacts of eating animal products became ‘too big to ignore’.

But she faced the same challenges as before: what should she eat?

“When I removed that animal protein entree from the mix, it was just like, what do I put there,” she said. “And for some reason, it didn’t click for me that it’s okay just to eat vegetables. That didn’t resonate. I was like, where is the entree? And so, structuring my meals was the biggest challenge.”

90-day program

It wasn’t until Welch started working with a vegan coach* that she became comfortable with eating foods like whole-food grains, pasta, and rice. She said: “I am now eating things that I previously had labeled as bad foods.

“I never would have eaten rice. I hadn’t had rice in years. I hadn’t had bread in years. I hadn’t had pasta in years. And now, I can eat those things and know that as long as I’m doing the, staying on my exercise plan and staying within my numbers, I can eat whatever I want.”

Among the foods she now enjoys are rice bowls, pasta dishes, and lentils, as well as fruit – particularly mangoes. She has some foods she limits a little. “I love, love, love, avocados,” says Welch. “I love them. I don’t think there is anything wrong with avocados and I do believe in their health benefits, but they are really high in fat.

“Nut butters are really a slippery slope for me because I can make a meal out of a spoon and a tub of nut butter. Things that I watch out for now when I’m pre-planning my meals and making sure that I’m hitting the numbers that I want to meet are vegan sauces that are made from tahini, or made from peanut butter. Again, nothing wrong with those foods, I tend to over-consume when I’m exposed to things like that.”

Health benefits

Before the end of her 90-day plan, Welch had dropped 22lb and was already experiencing a slew of health benefits. She said: “I’m 41 and I am running faster now than I have in almost 20 years. The last time I ran as fast as I could run now I was a competitive athlete.

“I feel stronger. When I go out for a run or a bike ride, or I go to the gym and I’m on one of the cardio machines, I get this burst of energy and it surprises me sometimes where I think I could keep doing this for hours, where I’m not getting tired, I’m not getting winded.”

In addition, Welch said she has felt some mental health benefits from the change too: “I have a history of struggling in and out of depression and none of that has come up for me. I’m not saying I’m without anxiety, or without doubt…but the deep, dark feelings are not there.

“I just feel really happy and healthy and fit and strong. Definitely stronger and in better health than I was in my 20s by far.”

Advice

Welch has advice for people who are interested in going plant-based, but who have fears around eating carbs. She says she can empathize, as she felt the same, but looking at her results now, her diet worked.

“I’m not a dietician, a nutritionist. I’m not a doctor. I can’t explain anything from those perspectives. But, I can explain it from the perspective of, ‘I tried something new and it worked for me, so maybe if everything you’ve tried isn’t working, maybe you try something new too’.”

*Jill Welch worked with vegan fitness coach Ben Raue and followed his dietary plan.

37 Genius Trash-to-Treasure Crafts That Will Save You So Much Money

You can accomplish most of these simple upcycling ideas in a single afternoon.

1. Before: Soda Can

Don’t recycle that can just yet — it has a lot more aesthetic potential than you realize.

1. After: Soda Can Art

Some cutting, shaping, and painting turned the empty beverage into the petals and stems of these pretty framed florals.

Get the tutorial at Purple Hues and Me »

2. Before: Mint Box

After freshening up your breath, a candy dispenser can also organize your purse.

2. After: Bobby Pin Holder

Banish flyways just like coffee breath. Replace the container’s label with washi tape, and voilà — bobby pins are finally corralled in one place.

Get the tutorial at Bright Bold and Beautiful »

3. Before: Kitchen Stool

If your kitchen island seating is literally on its last leg…

3. After: Gift Wrap Caddy

Flip the stool upside-down to stash a supply of wrapping paper, and hang any extra tools on the legs’ cross bars.

Get the tutorial at Home Talk »

4. Before: Cake Pans

After years of birthdays, your cake pans probably aren’t pristine. But that’s no reason to toss them

4. After: Tiered Tray

Last-minute dinner party centerpiece: a vintage-style display like this one.

Get the tutorial at A Nest For All Seasons »

5. Before: Tires

Yes, even this banged up piece of rubber can find a place in your home (and we don’t mean in the garage!).

5. After: Christmas Lawn Ornaments

Last-minute dinner party centerpiece: a vintage-style display like this one.

Get the tutorial at A Nest For All Seasons »

6. Before: VHS Storage Case

Almost any antique store you visit will have a few VHS cases for just a couple dollars.

6. After: Christmas Lawn Ornaments

Bring them into the 21st century with a coat of grey paint and some industrial legs.

Get the tutorial at Sadie Seasongoods »

7. Before: Knife Rack

Paired with skewers, this common kitchen object is totally perfect for the craft room

7. After: Thread Organizer

Your most-used threads are always within reach when standing at attention in this DIY organizer. And a coat of bright paint adds a pop of creativity to your space.

Get the tutorial at Refresh Living »

8. Before: Headboard

This lucky antique store find would be a beautiful focal point in a bedroom, but the owner had another cool idea.

8. After: Quilt Rack

Turned on its side, the elegant piece becomes an eye-catching space to display blankets and throws.

Get the tutorial at Brepurposed »

9. Before: Broom Bristles

A gently used broom is practically begging to be upgraded from sweeping the floor to weekend DIY material.

9. After: Desk Organizer

This pencil holder is more homey and helpful than the uninspired, angular cups you’d find at an office supply store.

Get the tutorial at Homeroad »

10. Before: Florist Bucket

Since the container your flowers arrive in already fits all of the buds to a T, don’t toss it just because the exterior is an eyesore.

10. After: Romantic Vase

A large floral appliqué with a coat of white paint gives the bucket an antique, romantic vibe that totally enhances the beauty of fresh flowers.

Get the tutorial at Shabby Fufu »

11. Before: Salsa Jars

Your chips-and-dip habit doesn’t have to result in a ton of glass jars in the recycling bin.

11. After: Candle Jars

Rinse them out and create pretty candle jars in a fun color scheme that matches your home.

Get the tutorial at The Real Thing With the Coake Family »

12. Before: Knife Block

Your chips-and-dip habit doesn’t have to result in a ton of glass jars in the recycling bin.

12. After: Craft Caddy

With the help of a drill (and some bold paint), this knife block gets a second life as a kid-friendly art station.

Get the tutorial at Thrift Diving »

13. Before: Tissue Box

A case of the sniffles doesn’t have to be all bad. Just hold on to empty Kleenex boxes from cold season.

13. After: Desk Organizer

A step above the average pencil cup, this cute caddy boasts special compartments (read: repurposed toilet paper rolls) to organize home office essentials.

Get the tutorial at Domestically Blissful »

14. Before: Tin Cans

Next time the soup’s on, rinse out the can for an after-lunch DIY.

14. After: Patio Luminaries

Plot out pretty designs or go for classic polka dots when making these outdoor lanterns. If you don’t have a powerful hole punch, just use a hammer and nail.

Get the tutorial at Crafts Unleashed by Consumer Crafts »

15. Before: Tin Cans

Instead of tossing salsa and pasta sauce containers in the recycling bin, save a few screw-top jars.

15. After: Apothecary Jars

Fancy glass containers don’t need to be expensive. Copy the vintage pharmacy look by painting the lids and affixing spare knobs or drawer pulls.

Get the tutorial at Little House of Four »

16. Before: Coffee Cans

If you go through more coffee cans than water bottles, that’ll come in handy for this upcycle idea.

16. After: Planters

Fresh paint and a textured trim transform these containers into decorative pots. Pop a pair on your mantel for some extra greenery.

Get the tutorial at The Wicker House »

17. Before: Phone Book

Everyone’s got an old phone book sitting around. Don’t recycle it just yet!

17. After: Phone Book Wreath

Upcycle your phone book into a sunny yellow wreath that will put a smile on everyone’s face.

Get the tutorial at A Night Owl Blog »

18. Before: Window Shutter

An old window shutter is just the sort of thing you might find on the side of the road or even in you own garage.

18. After: Paper Organizer

Bring it inside to help organize your scrapbooking papers (or, ya know, your tax forms). Simply add a fresh coat of paint and some pockets and you’re good to go.

Get the tutorial at Jennifer Maker »

19. Before: Lotion Bottle

The next time you run through a bottle of lotion, rinse it out to create something practical for your home.

19. After: Herb Garden

These colorful planters are the perfect size to create a handy indoor herb garden. You can also use them to corral pens, pencils, and other office supplies.

Get the tutorial at Lovely Indeed »

20. Before: Paper Rolls

The next time you run through a bottle of lotion, rinse it out to create something practical for your home.

20. After: Wall Organizer

Glue a few rolls together to create a quirky wall organizer that can store all sorts of knick-knacks, from keys to air plants.

Get the tutorial at A Kailo Chic Life »

21. Before: Classic Book

The covers of Reader’s Digest condensed books feature pretty patterns that are just as beautiful as the stories inside — and so you might as well display them with the rest of your art collection.

21. After: Photo Display

Adhere a family photo to the cover of each book and display them right on the mantel.

Get the tutorial at Sadie Seasongoods »

22. Before: Wine Corks

You know you’ve been saving those corks for something. We’ve got the most adorable solution ever.

22. After: Vase

This trash-to-treasure craft works especially well if you’re loyal to one brand of wine (since all the corks will be the same size).

Get the tutorial at Design Improvised »

23. Before: Vintage Mirror

Past-prime mirrors are a dime a dozen at thrift stores and yard sales alike. Pick one up and transform it into a centerpiece for your coffee table.

23. After: Candle Tray

A delicate candle tray will look so chic in any farmhouse, boho, or traditional home.

Get the tutorial at Bless’er House »

24. Before: Boring Rug

Vacuum your old rug to clean off excess dirt — then, get ready to take it up a notch.

24. After: Bright Overdyed Rug

This hot trend is surprisingly easy to do at home. Mix store-bought dye per instructions — we used RIT all-purpose dye in Coral. (Note: Match your dye selection to your fiber type — e.g. natural vs. synthetic.) Wearing gloves, fill a glass spray bottle with mixture. Coat surface of rug. Repeat until it is the desired color.

25. Before: Paint Bucket

Your home refresh doesn’t have to end with a fresh coat of paint. You can also turn those empty paint buckets into something fabulous.

25. After: Ice Bucket

A gold-trim ice bucket is just the thing to take your bar cart from blah to bold.

Get the tutorial at Hey Let’s Make Stuff »

26. Before: Vintage Teacup

At a yard sale? Scoop up that set of old teacups — there are so many creative re-uses for them.

26. After: Teacup Candle

These adorable homemade candles make perfect gifts. Not to mention, you can customize the scent exactly to your liking.

Get the tutorial at A Night Owl Blog »

27. Before: Chandelier

If you’re replacing your old dining-room light fixture, give it a second life and turn it into something totally new.

27. After: Crystal Necklaces

A show-stopping necklace will make you feel elegant whenever you put it on (or simply see it in your jewelry box). These ones require just a bit of suede cord and lobster clasps.

Get the tutorial at Two Purple Couches »

28. Before: Cinder Block

Your next round of yard work might leave you with a few concrete blocks leftover — and if it does, don’t worry about how you’re going to schlep them to the dump.

28. After: Planter

Instead, paint a pretty design onto a few of them and use the blocks as indoor or outdoor planters. Your flowers will never know the difference.

Get the tutorial at Design Improvised »

29. Before: Window Frame

Transform this dumpster-bound find into an entryway organizer that will add a pop of color and pizazz to an otherwise empty wall.

29. After: Entryway Organizer

Use painter’s tape to give the frame a fresh new color. Paint one pane with chalkboard paint and customize the others to your liking. Add a shelf and some hooks and you’re done.

RELATED: 15 DIY Wall Decor Ideas to Instantly Upgrade Any Blank Space

30. Before: Thrifted Basket

Get creative with a flea market find (we picked up this seagrass beauty for $10).

30. After: Statement Basket

This dream weave was easy to achieve: simply paint a design, following the pattern of the basket.

31. Before: Brick

Use bricks from a leftover home project or buy them at your hardware store for around 60 cents each.

31. After: Planter

Scoop dirt or potting soil into a hole and pop in a few small succulents for the ultimate low-maintenance garden.

32. Before: Boring Rug

Before you send those cans off to the recycling bin, see if you can upcycle them first.

32. After: Pretty Pots

Rinse clean, file sharp edges, then measure the can height, cutting wrapping paper or wallpaper to fit before securing with double-stick tape.

33. Before: Wine Corks

Leftover wine corks are the perfect things to upcycle into something new.

33. After: Bottle Stoppers

Transform them into the perfect hostess gift with a little hot glue and a few gems.

34. Before: Lampshade

If you can find two matching lamp shades, then you can DIY your own chic light pendant.

34. After: Scandi Pendant

Remove the fabric and lining from the shades and attach the wire frames bottom to bottom with electrical tape. Thread a pendent light cord through the middle and screw in an LED bulb. Hot glue the end of a length of jute cord to the top frame and wrap around until covered. Repeat with the bottom half.

35. Before: Sideboard

There are so many ways to transform this simple piece from the neighborhood garage sale…

35. After: Statement Sideboard

Use painter’s tape to create a geometric pattern on the front of the cabinet. Now, you’ve got a show-stopping piece.

36. Before: Secretary Desk

Past-prime mirrors are a dime a dozen at thrift stores and yard sales alike. Pick one up and transform it into a centerpiece for your coffee table.

36. After: Statement Desk

Add a layer of paint, some peel-and-stick patterned paper, and a tassel for a desk that can hold its own as the centerpiece of your space.

37. Before: Paint Stirrers

Snap up some freebie sticks every time you hit the hardware store and build a little collection of scrap wood.

37. After: Starburst Mirror

 

A framed craft store mirror is all it takes to spice up the dining room walls. You can even stain the stirrers to match the table.

Get the tutorial at Decorating Cents »

Healthy Vegan Nutella

healthy vegan nutella

RECIPE by @wholesomehedonista


Mouthwatering treats and no baking needed!

Time: 15 mins
Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dry roasted, unsalted hazelnuts,
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil (melted and cooled),
  • 2/3 cup cacao or cocoa powder,
  • 7 dates (soaked),
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup,
  • 1 cup almond milk (+more if needed),
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla (optional),
  • Pinch of salt,

Rated 5/5

based on 31 customer reviews

Instructions:

  1. Add hazelnuts to a high powered blender or food processor.
  2. Process until smooth and creamy like peanut butter.
  3. Next add the remaining ingredients and blend/process until smooth (add more almond milk if needed to thin out).

Vegan Breakfast Granola Cups

Vegan Breakfast Granola Cups

RECIPE by @elavegan


Mouthwatering treats and no baking needed!

Time: 90 mins
Serves 6-10

Ingredients:

Granola cups:

  • 1 1/2 cups (170 g) granola,
  • 1/2 cup (70 g) sunflower seeds chopped (see recipe notes),
  • 2 tbsp (40 g) agave syrup (or maple syrup),
  • 2 heaped tbsp (50 g) sunflower seed butter (see recipe notes),
  • Pinch of salt,

Filling:

  • 1/4 cup (60 g) sunflower seed butter (melted),

Topping:

  • 1/2 cup dairy-free (90 g) chocolate chips (or dark chocolate, chopped),

Rated 4.5/5

based on 17 customer reviews

Instructions:

  1. Combine all ingredients for the granola cups in a mixing bowl and mix well with either a spoon or your hands. The mixture should stick together when you press it between your fingers. If it’s not very sticky add a little bit more liquid sweetener.
  2. Grease a cupcake pan or use a silicone mold. This recipe yields 6-8 cups, depending on the size of your cupcake pan.
  3. With the back of a tablespoon, press the mixture firmly into the cupcake pan and make a dent in the middle of each cup.
  4. Put a heaped tsp of sunflower seed butter into the center of each granola cup. Freeze until firm, about 60 minutes.
  5. Melt dairy-free chocolate chips in a water bath (simply put the chocolate chips in a small bowl and place it over hot water). You can accelerate the melting process by adding 1-2 tsp of coconut oil.
  6. Once the chocolate is melted pour it on top of the sunflower seed butter of each granola cup. It will harden quickly because the sunflower seed butter is cold.