Meal Planning for Different Diets

Meal Planning for Different Diets

By: Carrie Walco-Bowman

For whatever reason, it seems like everyone is following a different eating plan, diet, or lifestyle these days. Some people diet to lose weight from gaining too much during the holidays, pregnancy, or overeating easy-access fast food. Then there are healthy eating plans and lifestyles for other purposes. Some contain high protein to gain weight and bulk up for bodybuilding, low carbohydrates to reduce blood sugar, or plant-based lifestyles for ecological and health-related reasons.

If you need to plan meals and groceries for any amount of people with different diets, it can be frustrating. Now, breathe a sigh of relief because we have several easy tips, meal ideas, and substitutions for some of the most popular eating plans and diets: low carb, low calorie, gluten-free, vegetarian, and high protein.

LOW CARB MEAL IDEAS

Low carbohydrate diets contain under 100-150 carbs a day or 20% of calories from carbs. Ketogenic (keto) diets require even less, 20-50 carbs per day, or 10% of calories from carbs.

Pulled Pork Carnitas

Low Carb Tacos

You can easily wipe out most of the carbs by substituting lettuce instead of shells or tortillas. Or, significantly reduce carbs by using a low carb tortilla or low carb wrap. Make sure to point out the low carb and high carb items if they don’t already know. Then, have people choose their ingredients and amounts to suit their likes and diet. Done!

Our Bulk Ropa Vieja, Ground Beef (90/10 Grass-Fed), and Pulled Pork Carnitas are just a few low carb entrees that would work great on your next taco bar.

Check out our site for more low carb bulk ingredients and meals.

LOW-CALORIE MEAL IDEAS

According to everydayhealth.com, “A low-calorie diet is one that restricts your intake to 1,200 to 1,600 calories per day for men, and 1,000 to 1,200 calories per day for women. Some people go on a very low-calorie diet for rapid weight loss, often consuming only 800 calories a day.”

Thai Chicken Salad

Low-Calorie Salad / Salad Bar

This is almost the same process as the tacos above, except you need to make sure there are enough low calorie and tummy-filling options with lots of fiber and lean protein. Include at least two dressing choices, one low calorie and one that doesn’t have any dieting restrictions. Some tremendous low-calorie salad bar choices that pack on the protein and flavor are skinless lean meats, boiled eggs, bacon sprinkles, feta or goat cheese; or roasted tofu, edamame, or quinoa for vegan eaters. Green onions, fresh herbs (like cilantro or basil), spicy peppers, and celery are super low in calorie but high on flavor. And, of course, lots of greens and veggies for fiber!

Some of our favorite salads are our Sesame Crusted Tuna Salad, Thai Chicken Salad, and Chicken Cobb Salad.

Find more low-calorie meal ideas in the MightyMeals Under 500 Calorie meals and ingredient selector.

GLUTEN-FREE MEAL IDEAS

Gluten is a protein found in grains like wheat, barley, and rye. Gluten is often accidentally added to gluten-free foods during the manufacturing and packaging process. So, make sure foods are labeled gluten-free, are naturally gluten-free, or ask/research before buying them. Your gluten-free friends will appreciate this greatly.

Gluten-Free Lasagna

Since gluten-free diets must restrict things like traditional pasta and bread, try to provide alternate options as substitutes. My gluten-free friends LOVE lasagna made with no-boil gluten-free lasagna noodles. These can be found in almost any store now, and most brands provide a recipe right on the box. Super (no-boil) easy! Just make sure that all of the other ingredients are also gluten-free. It can even show up in cheese or baking powder.

These gluten-free meals are a few of our #MightyFam favorites: Beyond Burger® (vegan too!), Chicken Enchilada Casserole, or Coconut Chicken Curry.

Discover all of our gluten-free meals and ingredients.

VEGETARIAN MEAL IDEAS

A strict vegetarian lifestyle does not include any foods that contain meat in any form, as a whole food or a derived source. This includes all animals, fish, shellfish, dairy, eggs, and so forth. If you didn’t already know, there are also plenty of “hidden” animal sources of food. Some of the most common ones include casein (derived from animal milk), gelatin (derived from animal collagen), isinglass (derived from fish bladders and most often found in wines and beer), and whey (a dairy product loaded with protein found in a lot of high protein powders and products).

TIP: Some vegetarians do not follow a strict vegetarian diet and opt to eat fish or dairy at times. When meal prepping for vegans or vegetarians, asking is always best.

Vegan Stuffed Portabella

Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms

Just about everyone loves a great stuffed mushroom as an appetizer or a full meal. If you have a recipe that contains meat, try substituting it with a vegan meat substitute. Using portabella mushrooms will go a long way since their texture is denser and “meatier” than other mushroom varieties. A lot of vegetarians also consume dairy and cheese, so you may be able to include it. If not, use a vegan substitute or a recipe that doesn’t require them.

Check out our Vegan Stuffed Portabella for more ideas or to order.

Our Vegan Chipotle Bowl, Vegan Bolognese w/Spaghetti Squash, and Vegan Caponata Quinoa Bowl are also excellent vegetarian meal options. Or select something from all of our vegetarian meals.

HIGH PROTEIN MEAL IDEAS

People who follow a high protein diet consume more than the recommended daily amount of protein (more than 50 grams/day for women, over 60 grams/day for men). This diet is good for athletes and other people who want to build muscle. It can also help you lose weight since protein is slowly digested, creating a long-lasting energy source that keeps us full. Lean animal meats and fish are some of the highest protein sources: chicken breast, pork chops, tuna, salmon, skirt steak, and lamb roast. However, there are plenty of options for vegans and vegetarians. Tofu, lentils, beans, peas, seeds, and nuts are some of the highest forms of vegetarian protein.

High-Protein Oatmeal

Oatmeal is highly versatile and is gluten-free in most cases. So, it’s highly adaptable to many diets. To make it low carb, use less oatmeal and more protein add-ins or boosters.

The first step is to make plain oatmeal, and then add in your high protein boosters: eggs, nut butter, Greek yogurt, silken tofu, chia seeds, or protein powder. Don’t forget to add these AFTER you make the oatmeal or learn the hard way (like I did).

Mighty Meals offers high protein-boosted meals, like our Low Carb Bulgogi (56 GRAMS!), and our Philly Cheesesteak Pita (62 GRAMS!), as well as high protein snacks, like the Mighty Bite and Berg Bite cookies by Berg (also vegan and gluten-free).

We regularly add new menu items and rotate our meal offerings, so check back often.

Don’t forget to ask your friends and family what fits their diet or lifestyle best. They are usually your best sources. They will know what to look for and what they like best. I hope these ideas help you plan and create meals for different diets with ease.

For more ideas about dieting, you can find sample meal plans and more info about high carb, low carb, and ketogenic diets on our blog by Chase McKesey, Sample Macronutrient Meal Plans for a High Carb, Low Carb, and Keto Diet.

Kick-Start a Healthy New Year with Dry January

Kick-Start a Healthy New Year with Dry January

By: Christine Bean

After an indulgent holiday season, the New Year typically inspires healthier goals, promises, and resolutions. But did you know that by the time Day 6 rolls around, most people have already fallen off track and given up? Now is the perfect time to step-back, adjust your goals, and recommit with the right mindset. Nutritionist Inez Sobczak, founder and master trainer at Fit-Nez, is back to share some Sober Strong tips to start the year off on a healthy note.

With alcohol flying off the shelves as people try to combat quarantine, it has become more important than ever to really take a look at our relationship with alcohol. No matter how fun it may be, drinking is bad for your health, especially if you have one too many. By changing your mindset, and making yourself a priority, you’ve got nothing to lose.

  • Did you know that taking a 30-day break from alcohol can lower your blood pressure, up your immunity, and boost your mood? Bonus: You’ll sleep more soundly and have less brain fog, too!
  • Want to jump start your weight loss and pave your way to a healthier lifestyle? Boozy beverages contain plenty of empty calories and can damage your metabolism.  Oftentimes, drinking leads to poor food choices. You may be pleasantly surprised to see the number on the scale drop after just 30 days of no drinking.
  • Load-up on drink alternatives and distractions! Try treating yourself to kombucha, teas, fruity seltzers or even make your own delicious mocktails. Notice your “witching hours” and try to distract yourself (purge your closet, organize your utensil drawer, or start planning your dream vacation for 2022!) 
  • Maybe your issue isn’t alcohol: “dry” can encompass a lot more. As a nutritionist, I often recommend clients detox from sugar or caffeine to ensure their body is operating at the highest capacity. You can commit to being “dry” from anything if you are honest enough to take the leap and make the change.
  • Sometimes Dry January can set you up for sabotage, giving you false reassurance that, because you were able to abstain for a month, you really don’t have a problem. What is your 30-day step-down strategy? What is your next step to implement this into a lifestyle plan?

 

Whatever it is that you have been leaning on during this time period, take a step back and consider that it may no longer be serving you. Every day is a new opportunity to choose a better path. You owe it to yourself to be consistent, disciplined, and focused in 2021. Dust yourself off, reset, and do it for YOU.

About Inez Sobczak

Inez, founder and master trainer at Fit-Nez, has over 15 years of experience as an innovator in health and fitness. What began as a passion for sports and aerobics in her youth culminated in her founding of Fit-Nez, located in Arlington, Virginia.

Inez was first certified as a group fitness instructor while still in high school. In college, she created and developed a wellness program for her college including nutrition education and fitness classes. Upon graduation, she embarked on a career in sales, where during lunch hours and weekends she continued her commitment to helping those around her achieve their fitness goals.

After a few years in sales, she turned her passion into a full-time mission by opening Fit-Nez. Inez holds over a dozen health, fitness and nutrition certifications. She is a national figure competitor, a marathon runner and widely recognized expert in nutrition, corporate wellness. She maintains a complete commitment to living the fitness lifestyle she imparts to her clients.

Connect with Fit-Nez

Follow Fit-Nez on Facebook and Instagram to stay up-to-date!

5 Selfishly Healthy New Year’s Resolutions & How to Keep Them

5 Selfishly Healthy New Year’s Resolutions & How to Keep Them

By: Erica Hanner, Erica Jade Health

Personal training and holistic health coaching are the loves of my life! So, naturally, I have a lot of experience with setting healthy goals and New Year’s resolutions–like eating more whole foods, getting more sleep, being more physically active, and avoiding bad carbs, processed sugars, and alcohol. But, today, I want to talk about an unconventional resolution–to be more selfish!

Being selfish doesn’t mean you are taking something away from someone or that you don’t care about them. It just means that you are intentionally making time for yourself and your health. Here are 5 ways to invest in self-love and self-care.

5 Selfish & Healthy New Year’s Resolutions

1. Take naps

A 15 to 30-minute nap for adults can improve mood, sharpen your focus, reduce fatigue, and lower blood pressure. Try not to go longer than that as you can enter the deeper sleep phases, which can make you sleepier or groggy.

2. Tune out your devices for “you” time

Limit the time you are connected to your texts, emails, and devices to reclaim more time for you. Instead of checking your device every time you get a notification, schedule blocks of time. Don’t forget to schedule a few device-free days and disconnect entirely.

3. Schedule a “me” day

Book a spa day, plan a day out with nature, or pamper yourself at home. It will do wonders for your mental and physical health.

4. Practice good gut health

A poor gut balance can lead to feeling sluggish, increased anxiety, and digestive issues. Make sure to feed your gut with healthy nutrients. A happy gut equals a happy life!

5. Exercise daily

Exercising is one of the best investments in your health. So, of course, it’s one of the best things to do every day­. It can boost your mood, reduce stress and anxiety, increase strength and endurance, lower blood pressure, and help you lose weight.

3 Ways to Keep Resolutions

Some resolutions can be small, and some can seem like a long-distance marathon. Either way, trust me, you can get there without being overwhelmed. Here are three great ways to keep your resolutions for the new year.

1. Vision / Dream Board

Creating a vision board is a great way to put your goals down in writing and motivate yourself throughout the year. It’s your board, so it can include anything! However, try to design it based on how you want to feel. Our feelings are one of the most potent sources of motivation.

I like to choose a theme for my boards. An overall theme makes it easier to focus on the greater goal of being happier and healthier. For 2020 I chose “focus” as my theme. It has definitely worked!

After you have decided on your theme, set goals, and prioritize them on your vision board. Include things that make you feel motivated towards your goals–images, quotes, notes, sketches, magazine clippings, affirmations, etc. When complete, place your board in a place where you can see it every day. Without even knowing it, you will be doing short visualization exercises every day just by looking at it! It will help before you even realize it.

2. Focus Word

A focus word sounds similar to setting a theme for your vision board, but it’s slightly different. It forms an intention instead of goals to achieve. For example, if you intend to be healthier, choosing “healthy” for your focus word makes the most sense. Include your focus word in your activities and plans: eating, exercising, vacations, relationships, habits, shopping, etc. It will help guide you and keep you on the road to your goals.

3. Make a Plan & Break it Down

After you’ve set your goals and focus words, the next step is to plan and break down your larger goals. Outlines and lists work well for this. Don’t be afraid to re-use good ones from previous years. Lists that I keep and update every year are my favorite workouts and my favorite local studios.

Feel free to contact me if you need help with accountability, personal training, health coaching, or if you just need more tips on how to reach your goals for the New Year.

Or, join me in my January Virtual Health Coaching Group!

2021 Virtual Health Coaching Group

Get support and accountability while you work towards your goals!

I am currently accepting up to 8 people into my Healthy Through the Holidays program starting Sunday, January 10th, 2021.

This program is 6-weeks long and consists of:

  • Weekly group coaching sessions via Zoom.
  • Weekly handouts & challenges.
  • A private FB community to connect with others in the group.
  • Group calls will take place at 9:30am EST every Sunday from Jan 10th through Feb 14th.

Sign up for a free consultation and reserve your spot at a special holiday rate!!

Vegan Mediterranean Bowl

Erica’s Favorite MightyMeals: Vegan Mediterranean Bowl

Connect with Erica on InstagramFacebook and at www.ericajadehealth.com.

A Mighty Recipe: Sweet & Smoky Turkey Chili

A Mighty Recipe: Sweet & Smoky Turkey Chili

By: Olivia Brant, RD, Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics & Registered Dietitian

This sweet & smoky turkey chili requires minimal prep and leaves you with hours of nothing to do but curl up on the couch (and stir, on occasion).

Ingredients

  1. Ground Turkey

    1/2 lb MightyMeals Bulk Ground Turkey

  2. Splash of Olive Oil
  3. 3/4 cup Dried Black-Eyed Peas
  4. 1/2 lbs MightyMeals Bulk Sweet Potatoes (Using Mighty Meals pre-cooked sweet potatoes saved me 40 minutes of roasting time and NO cleanup for any sheet pans!)
  5. 3 tbsp Tomato Paste
  6. 3-4 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth
  7. 2 Bay Leaves
  8. 1 Yellow Onion, diced
  9. 1 Red Pepper, diced
  10. 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
  11. 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
  12. 1 tsp Salt
  13. 1 tbsp Ground Chipotle Chile (P.S. I like my food SPICY. If you don’t, scale back.)
  14. 1/2 tbsp Sweet Paprika
  15. 1/2 tbsp Apple Butter
  16. Cheese (optional)

Instructions 

  1. Brown turkey in a Dutch oven on the stove, with a little bit of olive oil.
  2. Remove turkey, add onions, peppers and sauté until soft. Add garlic and sauté for a minute or so.
  3. Add turkey back to Dutch oven. Add dry seasonings & mix.
  4. Add ALLLLL the other goodies, except the sweet potatoes.
  5. Simmer for 1 hour covered. Remove lid, stir, and simmer for 3-4 hours more, until beans are tender.
  6. Add roasted sweet potatoes for the last 15 minutes.
  7. Serve in bowls and add cheese to top it off, if you like.

Serves 4.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

Calories: 200 cal
Protein: 20 g
Carbohydrate: 28 g
Fiber: 9 g

Partner Spotlight: The Rest and Recovery Podcast

Partner Spotlight: The Rest and Recovery Podcast

By: Christine Bean

This week, we caught up with Scott Shortmeyer of The Rest and Recovery Podcast. Scott recently interviewed MightyMeals co-founder Dan Graziano on Episode 41: Nutrition Gap, Accessibility to Healthy Eats & Supporting First Responders with Dan Graziano

How did The Rest and Recovery Podcast get its start?

Scott: I ran cross-country and track and field in high school growing-up in New Jersey. In my 30’s, I started playing indoor sports, running half-marathons and triathlons while my kids were little. As a business professional and father of three, still having personal fitness goals, I was trying to keep everything in proper balance. The podcast stems from my own personal experience in burnout. Between being an active father, balancing work and athletics, I never really focused on the rest element and I basically imploded. I realized that I was not caring for myself effectively, and there was a large gap in the wellness and rest aspect of it.  I launched the podcast in March 2020; the mission is to educate, empower, and enable wellness through the use of proper and effective methods to ensure rest and recovery.

How did you connect with MightyMeals?

Scott: I discovered MightyMeals a few years ago through my blog, Gluten Free Northern VA. I linked-up with Dan over social media, and we immediately clicked. Nutrition and sleep are very important elements of our podcast, so MightyMeals fit right in. Dan discussed with me why he launched MightyMeals due to the gap that he saw with his clients as a personal trainer. Dan and his partners wanted people to optimize their life, whether it was fitness, being a good parent, or a solid employee. On the podcast, Dan and I talked about MightyMeals from a business standpoint, the quality of the ingredients, how they source and why they source that way. Dan is on a mission to make MightyMeals the top meal prep company in the nation, and it is clear to me that he is well on his way. 

What’s your favorite MightyMeal?

Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Scott: We are big fans of mexican food in my household, and the Chicken Enchilada Casserole does not disappoint. It has the perfect amount of spice to give a punch of flavor without burning you out. 

About Scott & The Rest and Recovery Podcast

Scott is a long time endurance athlete, 20 years Business Professional and married with three girls and the Host of The Rest & Recovery podcast.The creation of the podcast came from his personal experience with sleep issues and burn-out leading to depression.

The podcast brings to the listeners actionable information from some of the foremost professionals and experts on the best ways to help you rest & recover. Scott’s hope is that you can bring your best self to life in your fitness pursuits, marriage, or as a parent to ensure your one life is lived well. 

Connect with The Rest and Recovery Podcast

Follow The Rest and Recovery Podcast on Facebook and Instagram to stay up-to-date, and tune-in to their Apple Podcast channel to hear more!

Strategies to Boost Weight Loss

Successful weight loss encompasses both the body and the mind. Having a positive mindset can mean the difference between progress and complacency. Below we will explore some strategies that will EMPower you to alter your mindset, embrace positive change (big and small) and make progress on your journey towards a healthier lifestyle.

1. Befriend Your Body. It’s very hard to change a body you don’t like. It may seem counterintuitive, but weight loss is easiest to achieve when you have befriended your body, rather than criticizing it. Practice self-care and cut down on negative self-talk.

2. Ask Yourself the Right Questions. Our thoughts, behaviors and feelings are all related. What we think influences how we feel. When you learn to identify and challenge unhelpful, negative thoughts about your weight and shape, you can interrupt the cycle that keeps you stuck in your old patterns. Ask these 3 questions:

  • Does this thought work for me or against me?
  • Does this sound like something accurate, compassionate, or helpful?
  • Would I say the same thing to a friend, loved one or anyone else I love and respect?

3. Find Value in the Process. Defining success in weight, health and fitness has so often been determined by outcomes or results, like the number on the scale. When people shift their mindset to recognize that success is in the doing, not the achieving, then they are able to value success differently.

4. Develop Habits You Can Stick With. The best way to achieve weight loss is to focus on behavior change rather than what the scale says. Successful, sustained weight loss involves changing habits and changing them permanently. That way you don’t risk regaining the weight you lost.

5. Watch the Language you Choose. The words you use to describe your weight loss journey matter, even within your own head. When you change the story you tell yourself about something, you change how you feel and what you do about it. Example, if the word “exercise” gives you negative feelings, try calling it “movement”.

6. Get Comfortable with Setbacks. They are a normal and expected part of the change process. For instance, some people brush their teeth several times a day. But if they miss a brushing they don’t give up on dental health all together. Similarly, if you can learn to see weight-loss behaviors as a series of small actions, performed over time, it becomes easier to keep going.

7. Use the Power of “Yet”. It’s helpful to have a growth mindset instead of a fixed one. A growth mindset frames abilities and situations as changeable with hard work. A fixed mindset frames abilities as inborn and not changeable. A growth mindset allows you to see challenges as opportunities. Use the word “YET” to any challenge you are currently dealing with. For example:

  • I haven’t reached my ideal weight……YET.
  • I’m not making it to the gym 3 times a week…..YET.
  • I haven’t prepped my meals ahead of time….YET.

8. Aim for Progress, Not Perfection. Another reason people struggle with weight loss is we commonly expect perfection of ourselves: following the diet to the letter, never missing a workout and so on. By consistently making better choices than perfect ones, staying on track becomes easier and more sustainable.

ABOUT EMP180°
EMP180° offers personalized nutrition and weight loss programs designed to help individuals and entire families permanently change their health. Our highly trained nutrition coaches work with clients to help them transform their eating habits, achieve and maintain a target weight. We then provide life-long support, critical to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and optimal health long-term. For more information, please visit https://www.emp180weightloss.com.

Partner Spotlight: Fit-Nez

Partner Spotlight: Fit-Nez

Connect with Fit-Nez
Follow Fit-Nez on Facebook & Instagram to stay up-to-date!

How did Fit-Nez get its start?

Inez: I loved playing goalie as a kid on my soccer team! That initial love in sports pushed me into fitness which led me to become one of the youngest group fitness instructors in Virginia at age of 15. While I was double majoring in Philosophy and Political Science at The University of Lynchburg, I had also decided to pursue my passion for fitness even more by becoming a personal trainer and running a wellness program at my school.

After graduating, I moved to Arlington, VA to pursue law school. Shortly after, I realized that law wasn’t the right path for me, and I took a job in corporate sales, while still pursuing my passion for fitness as a part-time job. During the Recession, I was laid off. In trying to figure my next move, I was bouncing from gym to gym as a personal trainer and group fitness instructor, yet realizing that my REAL passion is helping people become their best selves all along. Fit-Nez is now 12 years old!

Only 25% of new businesses make it to 10 years or more, so I am honored and most of all humbled by the growth and impact Fitnez is making on this earth. The only way to get here is by focusing on continual learning and growth so I don’t get lazy with keeping up with all my certifications. Also, I am a voracious reader and lover of all podcasts that I can learn and grow as a nutritionist, coach and mom.

What sets me apart from other trainers is that I am a nutritionist first and trainer second. What I mean by that is that most trainers shouldn’t be writing nutrition plans, or meal plans, or whatever they want to call them. I am a nutritionist who works with humans day-in and day-out. My “North Star” has always been empowering people with the gift of health and fitness.

What can clients expect when they commit to working with you?

Inez: They should expect a nutrition coach whose intention is to serve them, not please them. I may definitely ruffle some feathers, but that comes with the job of helping people do something that they cannot do on their own. I will be the person who helps you reach your goal by teaching you to do it on your own. Your health is the only thing that matters; if you don’t like what you see then it’s time to make a change.

I’ve coached many people who think that just by hiring a nutritionist they have done the work, but the work doesn’t do itself. It’s my job to provide my clients with coaching and accountability, but you have to take that accountability and do something about it. Many of the nutrition plans I write are for moms juggling work, kids, taking care of a house and fighting off Covid, with little time to think about themselves. Using the Fit-Nez program, they will have a plan from the moment they wake up to the moment they go to sleep, knowing exactly what they need to do to reach their goals.

How did you connect with MightyMeals?

Inez: I’ve had a relationship with MightyMeals from the very beginning, and it has been amazing to watch the company evolve over the years. MightyMeals allows people the opportunity to eat clean on a budget without having to do any work, thought, or prep. I was working as a trainer at Gold’s Gym at the same time as MightyMeals co-founder Dan Graziano, and I was one of the first trainers that MightyMeals reached-out to after launching the brand. Of course I was 100% on board; this is what we live and breathe as trainers and nutritionists! MightyMeals takes the guesswork and time out of meal prep; I refer my clients daily to MightyMeals, and it saves the day every time!

How does MightyMeals help your clients reach their goals?

Inez: I’m on Zoom calls daily with people who say, “Inez, my biggest issue right now is finding the time to meal prep,” and luckily, because I have partnered with MightyMeals, my clients have an easy solution readily available to them. I’ve found that a lot of my clients really gravitate towards the bulk items, especially for meal prep. I tell them, “Listen, we still need to eat three meals per day, they can either help us or hurt us, so let’s make sure these meals are impactful and boost our immune system.” As a nutritionist, my focus has always been on helping my clients learn how to best fuel their bodies. MightyMeals is instrumental in this, especially as we try to balance it all in our busy lives. As a single, working mom to an active 3-year-old, I not only teach it, I live it!

Buffalo Baked Chicken Wings

What’s your favorite MightyMeal?

Inez: Give me all of the wings!

About Inez Sobczak
Inez, founder and master trainer at Fit-Nez, has over 15 years of experience as an innovator in health and fitness. What began as a passion for sports and aerobics in her youth culminated in her founding of Fit-Nez, located in Arlington, Virginia.

Inez was first certified as a group fitness instructor while still in high school. In college, she created and developed a wellness program for her college including nutrition education and fitness classes. Upon graduation, she embarked on a career in sales, where during lunch hours and weekends she continued her commitment to helping those around her achieve their fitness goals.

After a few years in sales, she turned her passion into a full-time mission by opening Fit-Nez. Inez holds over a dozen health, fitness and nutrition certifications. She is a national figure competitor, a marathon runner and widely recognized expert in nutrition, corporate wellness. She maintains a complete commitment to living the fitness lifestyle she imparts to her clients.

GIVING TUESDAY: Please Give to Real Food for Kids

GIVING TUESDAY: Please Give to Real Food for Kids

Since April, MightyMeals has donated 100 to 200 meals a week to Real Food For Kids Chef’s Feeding Families initiative. Together, we have served over 100,000 free nourishing, plant-forward meals to our community in need. Our Chefs Feeding Families efforts continue and we hope you will please consider making a donation for Giving Tuesday.

Your donation of any amount will ensure that additional children will have access to the healthy meals they require to keep their minds and bodies strong. Please consider donating here.

For more information on the Chefs Feeding Families initiative, please visit http://www.realfoodforkids.org/chefsfeedingfamilies.

About Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families

Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families is a joint project with Washington, D.C., metro-area restaurants to provide nourishing grab-and-go meals to school children and their families impacted by closed schools to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Co-founded by Chef David Guas of Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery in Arlington, Va. and Real Food for Kids, Chefs Feeding Families provides funding for food, supplies, and restaurant staff to feed as many families as possible and create employment opportunities within the restaurant community also impacted by COVID-19 closures. Visit www.realfoodforkids.org/chefsfeedingfamilies to find the latest information about meal availability in your area and learn how to provide more meals for families in need.

About MightyMeals

Founded in 2015 by two fitness professionals and a classically trained chef, MightyMeals believes high-quality, healthy food should be accessible to everyone. The Burke, Virginia company provides a convenient, healthy meal delivery service made with locally sourced ingredients by chefs, offering a wide array of meals on a menu that changes weekly. MightyMeals has more than 50 pick-up locations across the D.C. metro area. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier lives by being the leading provider of healthy, high-quality, locally sourced, chef-prepared meals that are delivered to you. Take the guesswork out of your nutrition so you can spend your time doing the things you enjoy. Visit www.eatmightymeals.com and use code TRYUS to receive a free meal. Follow MightyMeals at @eatmightymeals for updates on new locations and tasting events.

5 Ways & Tips to Curb Hunger Cravings

5 Ways & Tips to Curb Hunger Cravings

By: Dan Graziano, Co-Founder MightyMeals & Personal Trainer

We have all experienced food and hunger cravings at some point in our lives, especially during stressful times, holidays, parties, or moments that bring on emotional or binge eating. Unfortunately, it’s usually unhealthy foods, bad snacks, empty carbs, or sugary sweets that draw us in. There are reasons for our hunger cravings and ways to avoid giving into them. Here are five simple ways to kick cravings to the curb. 

1. Fill Up on Protein

Protein has been scientifically proven to be the most filling food source. It is more effective than most foods in keeping you full longer and satisfying hunger and cravings.  

 “This is partly because protein reduces your level of the hunger hormone ghrelin. It also boosts the levels of peptide YY, a hormone that makes you feel full.

These effects on appetite can be powerful. In one study, increasing protein intake from 15% to 30% of calories made overweight women eat 441 fewer calories each day without intentionally restricting anything.”

If you are looking to lose weight or get rid of belly fat, try replacing some of your carbs and fats with healthy, lean proteins. The best lean protein sources are turkey, chicken, lean beef, beans, salmon, tuna, tofu, low-fat milk, quinoa, edamame, and plain yogurt. 

TIP: Use our macronutrient filter to find the right protein, calorie, carb, and healthy fat freshly-made meals for you. Go to our menu and click on FILTER BY MACRO. 

2. Plan your Meals and What you Eat

Our lives can be overstressed and rushed, making it too easy to grab the fastest food nearby or whatever someone puts in front of us. Not having a plan for what you should eat, cook, or order opens the door to bad eating habits and unhealthy food cravings. It may sound hard to plan your meals and what you eat but, if you follow these tips, it can be simple:

TIPS:

– Before you eat, know what healthy food options are available. Most restaurants offer healthy options or substitutions. 

 – Carry healthy snacks with you when traveling or on the go. 

– Distance yourself from the foods you crave. Meaning, leave them at the grocery store and don’t bring them home.

 – Eliminate meal prep time and have pre-made healthy meals and snacks ready to eat at a craving’s notice. Give our meals a try. All of our fresh, chef-prepared meals are full of craving crushing healthy ingredients from local sources. Find over 100 meal-prepped meals here.  

3. Avoid Stress 

Stress often depletes our mind and body of energy and nutrients without us even realizing it. Our mind and body react by creating cravings for unhealthy simple carbs/sugars and unhealthy fats. And rightly so. Our body is doing its job in telling us the fastest way to instantly replenish lost energy–through simple carbs. Unfortunately, these are usually the worst for us in the long run. Avoid putting your body and mind into stress mode in the first place by avoiding these sources of stress: lack of sleep; not drinking enough water; consuming too much alcohol, sugar, or simple carbs; and lack of exercise.  

 TIP: If you need fitness motivation and fun ways to release stress, try out one of our partner gyms, personal trainers, health coaches, and fitness gurus. Find out all about them in our Partner Spotlight blogs.  

4. Avoid Simple Sugars/Carbs

Simple carbohydrates–or simple sugars–contain one or two sugar molecules. This makes them easier to digest and absorb when compared to complex carbs. They create instant energy and blood sugar spikes–fast energy sources–but this does not last long. When the boost from these sources drops, so does our energy, and back we go to craving them again. To prevent these unhealthy cravings, avoid foods that contain simple carbs: raw sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, and high-fructose corn syrup, glucose, fructose, sucrose, and any fruit juice concentrate. These are often found in soda, desserts, baked goods, packaged snacks/cookies, fruit juice, and cereals. 

TIP: Looking for healthy treats to satisfy your sweet tooth? Try any of these Mighty Bite cookiesor Berg Bite treats. They are full of complex carbs, plant protein, essential omega-three fats but are low in sugar, dairy-free, vegan, and gluten-free. Bye, bye, sugar spikes! Can they get any better?

5. Consume Complex Carbs

Our body’s primary source of energy is carbs. If we eat don’t eat enough, our body sends us a craving for those fast-acting but unhealthy simple carbs again. To combat this, eat complex carbs instead. Our bodies digest complex carbs more slowly, which makes them more filling. Complex carbs are also higher in fiber–another food source that is digested slowly–making you feel full throughout the day. Many fiber sources are also prebiotic, feeding the good bacteria in your gut. And complex carbs are higher in nutrients. Some of the best sources of complex carbs are most vegetables, asparagus, whole grains (like oats, buckwheat, brown rice, barley, quinoa), wheat bran, beans, lentils, berries, seeds (chia, flaxseeds), and some fruits (bananas, and apples. 

TIP: Keep quinoa on hand. Quinoa is one of the healthiest and most nutritious foods on this earth. It is high in fiber, minerals, antioxidants and includes all nine essential amino acids. We feature many chef-prepared meals with quinoa. 

Let MightyMeals help YOU make healthy eating easy! Check out our rotating menu of more than 100 options, including prepared meals, A La Carte, and MightyKids!

How to Stay on Track During the Holidays

How to Stay on Track During the Holidays

By: Erica Hanner, Erica Jade Health

As the holiday season approaches, so do the parties, food, drinks, and festivities. It can sometimes seem like a never-ending stream of appetizers, desserts, candy, and other goodies inviting us to overeat. Then after we overindulge, we sometimes create our own feelings of guilt and shame. A lot of people struggle with negative feelings towards food and themselves. In the past, I felt these same feelings of regret as I gravitated towards sweets and overindulged my cravings. I want you to know that you don’t have to feel that way, and there is a way to overcome those feelings so you can enjoy festive foods and every holiday!

Toss Out Food Guilt and Shame

The holidays are meant to be enjoyed with friends and family, and yes, that includes food and drinks! I’ve learned so much as a holistic health coach. I am so grateful to have transitioned my nutrition into a guilt-free and delicious relationship instead of one full of worry or endless calorie counting. You can still have a slice of pie, dessert, or some cookies. It won’t derail you. Treat yourself. Everything is allowed in moderation. And, please do not shame yourself or feel guilty. You can always get back on track the next day or during the week ahead, as long as you have a plan to do so.

TIP: If everything looks too good to pass up, try taking several small samples instead of entire servings. And, don’t feel like you have to eat the whole piece just because you put it on your plate–it’s ok to toss the rest out. Or, pace yourself if time allows and save dessert for later or bring it home and save it for the next day.

Stick to a Healthy Eating Plan: Before, During, & After

Before the Party:

When prepping dishes during the week for a weekend party, make sure to have healthy choices readily available for your mid-week meals and snacks. Having fast and easy snacks on hand is always a great idea, like fresh fruits, veggies, protein bars, or nuts. One of my favorite ways to stay on track is to get chef-prepared meals from MightyMeals. They create healthy meals that are delivered fresh to your door! This saves me time and takes the stress out of cooking and eating during the holidays. MightyMeals has several delicious options on their menu, including vegan, gluten free, and even kid-friendly meals called MightyKids. They are all wonderful but one of my favorites is the Vegan Mediterranean Bowl.

TIP: Eating healthy and staying on track also keeps you on the road to a healthy gut. See my blog 5 Ways to Support Gut Health and how a healthy gut helps reduce anxiety and depression–mental health issues that often increase during the holidays.

During the Party:

Before you arrive at the event, have a plan that doesn’t include guilt or shame. Start by loading your plate up with healthy nutrients such as greens, whole grains, veggies, and healthy proteins. After you are done, fill in the space left with less healthy options, like dessert or chips and dip. This will allow you to feel better about your food decisions and help you avoid carb overload and experiencing sugar crashes a few hours later.

TIP: If you know that the party won’t have many healthy options, offer to bring one! This can also help friends and family get started with their own healthier eating habits.

After the Party:

First: Don’t step on the scale too soon! Indulging the day before will cause the scale to go up a few pounds due to inflammation and bloating from the less healthy foods. So don’t stress! That immediate weight gain is mostly water weight. With enough water and healthy, fiber-filled foods, the bloat will go away after a few days.

Second: Get back on track. Make your next meal nutrient- and fiber-filled and schedule your next physical activity session. With simple planning and healthy choices, you will find yourself back on track in no time.

Third: Whatever you indulge in, make sure you enjoy it and yourself. Remember that moderation is essential but, so is living your life to its fullest. You deserve to have your happiness and joy!

TIP: Add physical activity to your plan, if you can. After your meal, go for a walk with friends and family or start an annual soccer match or football game. Everyone will enjoy it!

Vegan Mediterranean Bowl

Erica’s Favorite MightyMeals: Vegan Mediterranean Bowl

Connect with Erica on InstagramFacebook and at www.ericajadehealth.com.

MightyMeals Expands to Annapolis

MightyMeals Expands to Annapolis

Annapolis, MD  (November 9, 2020) –  MightyMeals, a Northern Virginia healthy meal delivery service, is expanding to the Annapolis area. Annapolis residents who live in zip codes 21401, 21403 and 21037, will now be able to order convenient, ready-to-eat meals, delivered right to their door.

As the leading provider of top-quality, chef-prepared meals in the D.C. metro region, MightyMeals prides themselves on empowering people to live healthier lives. Designed to save you time and take the guesswork out of nutrition, the menu features a wide variety of over 100 different meals, snacks, and ala carte options, rotating weekly. 

The first MightyMeals delivery date for the Annapolis area will be Thursday, November 12th. Delivery via MightyMeals refrigerated vans can be tracked by SMS notifications from the MightyMeals kitchen to your door, in real-time.

Making nutritious, convenient, high-quality food easily accessible to everyone has been MightyMeals’ goal since day one. With low-carb, low-cal, and gluten-free menu options, and the ability to filter by macro, there is something for every diet and palate. MightyMeals also recently introduced MightyKids; healthy, chef-prepared, dietitian-approved, kids meals. 

MightyMeals has partnered with Foundation Fitness of Annapolis, to offer their members a special discount on meals delivered to their homes. Foundation Fitness is Annapolis’ premiere, full-service, neighborhood gym, offering services such as personalized nutrition consulting, complimentary childcare, group classes, personal training, and more.

About MightyMeals

Founded in 2015 by two fitness professionals and a classically trained chef, MightyMeals believes high-quality, healthy food should be accessible to everyone. The Burke, Virginia company provides a convenient, healthy meal delivery service made with locally sourced ingredients by chefs, offering a wide array of meals on a menu that changes weekly. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier lives by being the leading provider of healthy, high-quality, locally sourced, chef-prepared meals that are delivered to you. Take the guesswork out of your nutrition so you can spend your time doing the things you enjoy. Visit www.eatmightymeals.com and use code Meal60 to receive $30 off your first 2 orders.. Follow MightyMeals at @eatmightymeals for updates on new locations and tasting events.

Partner Spotlight: SoldierFit Sterling

Partner Spotlight: SoldierFit Sterling

By: Christine Bean

This week, we caught up with SoldierFit Sterling’s owner, Harry Santucci, and GM, Brandon Christ, to learn more about their unique, military-style fitness culture, and why they’ve relied on MightyMeals to fuel their athletes and themselves! 

How did SoldierFit Sterling get its start? 

Harry: SoldierFit was founded in 2007 in Gaithersburg, MD by Danny Farrar, an Army Veteran. He originally ran the bootcamps outside, and I found them in 2012 when they began indoor classes in a small, rented space in Frederick, MD. I went in for a free class and loved the workout and the culture, so I joined. In 2013, they opened up their first standalone facility, a 10,000 sq ft gym in Frederick.  They announced a couple years later that they were going to begin franchising, and I bought the first franchise.  SoldierFit Sterling opened its doors on July 1, 2016.    

What makes SoldierFit Sterling unique?

Harry: We are a military-inspired fitness brand, which is unique in itself. There are no mirrors in the gym and everyone wears the same uniform, a “Troop” shirt as we call it, to encourage camaraderie. We offer 154 unique classes each month in our 10,000 square foot workout facility, and we have a 3,000 square foot open access gym, as well.  

Brandon: There is an immense amount of value in our membership, every class is different and everyone that works out with us feels that they are a part of something bigger.  Everyone achieves results, they just have to show-up! We have a wide variety of fitness levels in each class, and our instructors scale the workout depending on each person’s fitness level.  Everyone who joins has the intention of becoming a better version of themselves and gives it their all.

How did you get connected to MightyMeals?

Harry- Years ago, we tried a different meal delivery service and were not too pleased. One day in 2018, I googled “meal prep in Northern VA,” and MightyMeals caught my eye. I sent in a request, and MightyMeals’ co-founder Dan Graziano called me the next day. He really set the tone from there. I felt very comfortable and confident that they’d be able to deliver, and they have. 

Brandon: We’ve loved seeing the growth of MightyMeals since we started using them in 2018. You can tell it is a very well-run company, and it’s been fun to see the progression of larger delivery vans, new menu items, etc.   I’ve been ordering the meals consistently for myself ever since that day in 2018, and it’s been an integral part of my bodybuilding experience.

How does MightyMeals benefit your members?

Harry: At SoldierFit, we have the fitness component handled, but nutrition is an integral part of our clients’ health, as well. MightyMeals is fresh, affordable, nutritious, and we truly appreciate that the meals arrive on time and the orders are always accurate. The menu selection continues to evolve and our members are very pleased with the variety. W 

Grassfed Beef Lasagna

What’s your favorite MightyMeal?

Harry: Well, it may be because of my Italian heritage, but I love the Grassfed Beef Lasagna.

Brandon: The All American Breakfast is totally my favorite dish. Breakfast is my favorite meal, so I often eat this on weekend mornings. I hate cooking, and thanks to MightyMeals I haven’t really cooked a thing in 2 years!

Connect with SoldierFit Sterling

Follow SoldierFit Sterling on Facebook and Instagram to stay up-to-date!

Top 6 Farmers Market Tips

Top 6 Farmers Market Tips

By: Erica Hanner, Erica Jade Health

Here are my top 6 tips on how to shop your local farmers market for the healthiest in-season produce to make your tummy smile and improve your health.

1. Research and Plan

I suggest making a plan and doing some research before you go to your local farmers market. This will allow you to enjoy the farmers market even more. You may find fresh locally roasted coffee, crafts, gifts, freshly cooked-to-order meals, hot cider, a kombucha vendor, or live entertainment by your favorite local band. Set aside enough time for yourself enough time to enjoy them all. You can also make it a social event and meet up with friends and family (make sure everyone utilizes safe COVID-19 practices).

2. Bring Ideas and Take Notes

Before you go, pack your recipes and healthy cooking ideas, new or family favorites! If you do a little research before you go, you can find the ingredients you need and make them more amazing by getting them at their tastiest. If you see something new and exciting, pick it up, or create a note about it for next time. One thing I suggest to my health coach clients is to try one new food per week. This will expand your palate as well as widening your nutrient intake. All good things!

3. Shop Local

When you shop for locally grown produce, you get fresher products that taste better and have more nutrients. As produce ages, it loses nutrients. According to a University of California paper, vegetables lose between 15 and 77 percent of their vitamin C within a week of harvest. Since farmers markets feature everything in season, it is fresher than what you can find in a typical grocery store. It is typically grown within a 100-mile radius so that you know it is some of the freshest foods and nutrients around. If you are not sure if something is local and fresh, just ask.

4. Get There Early

If you can get to your local farmers market early, do it! It is so worth it! You will find the best picks of the day before everyone else scoops them up. Don’t forget to bring reusable, eco-friendly bags, and make sure to bring extra. I always find interesting things I want to try and have regretted not having enough bags to fit it all in. Getting there early also means fewer people, easier parking, and more time to ask the vendors questions.

5. Choose Colorful and Darker Foods

When you eat the rainbow, you get more benefits. So, pick a wide variety of colorful fruits and veggies, and go for dark green leafy vegetables. The darker ones have more phytonutrients and higher antioxidants believed to help fight disease. Learn more from my 5 Ways to Support Gut Health blog.

6. Talk to the Food Experts

The farmers themselves (or their staff) are often at the market presenting their delicious produce. They are the real foodie experts. They know the best recipes and how to store them to keep them fresh. They can confirm if their products are organic, even if they are not advertising it. It takes years to become Certified USDA Organic, so many companies may not have this designation, but they can still be organic. You can also ensure if they are the direct source. Sometimes items can be sold by third parties and have more of a markup, so check the labels and ask questions. And, after you become a regular, the vendor may even put your favorite farmers market finds aside if you can’t make it there early the next time! Or, you may be asked to be one of their taste testers (YUM!).

If you are looking for more guidance, I offer in-person or virtual farmers market tours. If you don’t have a farmers market local to you, we can do a grocery/health food store tour, or healthy cooking lessons. I would love to be your virtual or in-person holistic health coach! Schedule your free health consultation with me today, and let’s find your path to your happiest and healthiest you!

Mediterranean POWER Bowl

Erica’s Favorite MightyMeals: Mediterranean Power Bowl

Connect with Erica on InstagramFacebook and at www.ericajadehealth.com.

7 Surprising Effects Fall Weather Can Have on Your Body

Are you as excited about Fall as we are? With the fresh crisp air, the beautiful colors and all the pumpkin-spice coffee you could possible drink what’s not to love? Did you know that the change in seasons can also do incredible things for your health?  Here’s why the Fall season is the best time to improve both your mental and physical health.

Autumn Health Perk #1: Your Sleep Will Grow Deeper

In the autumn, sunrise comes later, and sunset comes earlier every single day.  The dip in available sunlight triggers different adjustments in our bodies’ circadian rhythms, which will reset to make you sleepy earlier.  It’s also been proven that lower temperatures help us sleep better, so just crack your window on a cool fall night for the best sleep ever.

Autumn Health Perk #2: Fall Colors Promote Mental Health

When you’re feeling “down,” there’s no faster way to pick up your mood than to step outside.  Not only does a hit of Vitamin D do incredible things for our serotonin levels, but there’s something innately soothing about being in the fresh air and looking at nature.  In autumn, when the landscape is especially beautiful and colorful, the sight of bright leaves will dramatically and immediately boost your happiness and mental health. Go for a hike in the mountains, walk in the park, get outside and go Forest Bathing: https://thrive.kaiserpermanente.org/thrive-together/live-well/forest-bathing-try

Autumn Health Perk #3: Seasonal Spices Improve Overall Wellness

You can’t have autumn comfort food without plenty of ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Fortunately, all three of these spices are delicious, and they improve your whole-body health. Nutmeg has germ-killing properties, ginger improves the circulation, and cinnamon is linked to lower inflammation levels! Try adding some to your coffee or tea.

Autumn Health Perk #4: Say Goodbye to Brain Fog

“Brain fog” is a general term for malaise and fuzzy-headed feelings that affects all of us from time to time. In the summer, it’s easy to feel brain-fogged from the heat, but the crisp clear air of fall does wonders for clearing the cobwebs.  It might be a bit of placebo effect, but lots of people find that the cold fall air helps break up the fog and get their brains going again!

Autumn Health Perk #5: You’ll Get Out More

We normally associate getting outside with the summer, but just think — how many summer days do you spend in the A/C, trying to avoid the stifling heat?  In the autumn, you might not be hitting the beach, but you’re much more likely to go hiking or walking, play a round of golf, or engage in a game of touch-football with friends. All of that built-in exercise is more appealing because of the lovely weather, and it can improve your metabolism and your overall health.

Autumn Health Perk #6: It Brings Us Together

On a cold night, with the frost just gathering on the glass, is there anything better than snuggling up under a blanket with a loved one and watching a movie?  Whether you’re cozying up to your partner, your kids, your pets — or some combination of the three — there’s nothing more comforting than a fall night in.  Plus, all of that physical contact boosts our oxytocin levels, and makes us bond more closely with the people we’re hibernating with!

Autumn Health Perk #7: There’s Lots To Look Forward To

We all love Thanksgiving, Halloween, and shopping for holiday presents in the fall, but there’s one thing we love even more: anticipating all of those activities.  It’s true that humans derive more pleasure from anticipating a fun activity than they do from actually doing it. Fall is great for this because you have so much to plan and look forward to, which makes us happy and boosts our serotonin levels for the most contented season of them all!

ABOUT EMP180°EMP180° offers personalized nutrition and weight loss programs designed to help individuals and entire families permanently change their health. Our highly trained nutrition coaches work with clients to help them transform their eating habits, achieve and maintain a target weight. We then provide life-long support, critical to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and optimal health long-term. For more information, please visit https://www.emp180weightloss.com.

The Mighty Bite: A MightyMeals and Berg Bites Collaboration

The Mighty Bite: A MightyMeals and Berg Bites Collaboration

By: Christine Bean

MightyMeals and Berg Bites have teamed-up to bring their customers the ultimate high protein cookie, The Mighty Bite. With only 1 gram of natural sugar and 16 grams of plant protein, this delicious grab-and-go snack gives you a healthy energy boost and will satisfy your sweet tooth without the glucose spike. “MightyMeals has been a huge supporter of us for the past three years, and we’ve always discussed collaborating in this way, but this idea really came to fruition about 4 months ago,” says Berg Bites owner Daniel Berg. “Once we realized that we had the capability to create a sugar-free, high protein cookie, both MightyMeals’ co-owner Stefano Marzano and I knew that this would be the perfect fit for both of our markets.” 

The Mighty Bite delivers long-term energy with complex carbohydrates from heart healthy oats, essential fatty acids from nuts, chia seeds and coconut oil, and prebiotic fiber for gut health. “It’s a really cool thing that we are two local companies, both health food providers, and we found a way to piggyback on each other to easily share clients without stepping on each other’s toes,” remarked Stefano. Both Daniel and Stefano agree that creating the name “The Mighty Bite” was a “massive deal” that really showcases how the two businesses continue to support each other through this collaboration.

What’s in The Mighty Bite?!

  • 16G Plant Protein (From Premium Pea Protein)
  • 1G Natural Sugar (From all natural sweeteners)
  • 10G Prebiotic Fiber
  • 12G Net Carbs (from heart healthy oats)
  • Dairy Free & Gluten Free

A lot of competitor analysis went into the creation of The Mighty Bite, according to Daniel. “We checked out our competition and noticed a common theme; we would find a cookie that contained 16 grams of protein, but also contained 16 grams of added sugar. Not only is it unhealthy, it just tastes artificial.” Instead, The Mighty Bite contains 1 gram of allulose, which is a rare sugar that is found naturally in figs, raisins, maple syrup and brown sugar. 

Free from preservatives, The Mighty Bite is made with clean, raw ingredients, ensuring that you are getting the most nutrient-dense product.  Two different varieties are currently being offered, Almond Butter Banana Chocolate and Peanut Butter Chocolate, both made with premium, all-natural, dark chocolate. Be sure to add one to your next MightyMeals order today, it just may become your new favorite pre-workout snack!

Learn more about Berg Bites and Daniel Berg in our Partner Spotlight: Berg Bites

Connect with Berg Bites: Follow Berg Bites on Facebook and Instagram to stay up-to-date!

Gut Health & The Top 5 Ways to Support It

Gut Health & The Top 5 Ways to Support It

By: Erica Hanner

Your gut is like your second brain. If it is not happy and out of balance, it can lead to depression, anxiety, a lowered immune system, and many other disorders. The system in your gut responsible for all of this is called the enteric nervous system (ENS). Its two thin layers of more than 100 million nerve cells help drive digestion, mood, health, and even the way you think. No wonder we feel butterflies in our stomach and get sick when this system is run down! The good news is that the best way to support a healthy gut is through eating food – the right ones.  

Sweet Potatoes

1. Avoid/Limit Processed Sugars, Carbs & Alcohol

One of the reasons I became a holistic health coach was due to my struggles with anxiety. I discovered many studies about how sugar caused my mood to swing, giving me that rush and then crashing. When you add in bad carbs and alcohol, they turn into even more sugar (glucose), making things even worse, especially if they both contain even more sugars and carbs! This cycle can increase your chance for depression and weaken your response to stress, among many other unwanted side effects. But I can help! Your body may not like that you are withdrawing from sugar, and you can experience more anxiety, confusion, or fatigue. But, patience, education, and the right food will get you to your happiest place! Some of my favorite sugary food replacements are sweet potatoes, berries, high-quality protein bars, and dark chocolate – many of these also contain polyphenols! More about that later.  

2. Add Food-Based Probiotics

Good, quality supplements are a great way to get beneficial probiotics into your gut microbiome – the system of trillions of good bacteria, fungi, and other microbes that help manage your digestion and immune system. However, the best way to support your gut with probiotics is through fermented foods. Some of the best probiotic, fermented foods to choose are kombucha, kimchi, kefir, and yogurt. Make sure they say “raw” or are produced without heat, which can lessen their strength and benefits.  

3. Add More Fiber

Fiber doesn’t only contribute to weight loss and disease prevention. Not surprisingly, it helps our gut as well by feeding the good bacteria microbes! This helps them thrive, create more microbes, and a stronger barrier wall in our intestines. This strong wall helps lower inflammation and improve digestion. And, a strong intestinal wall is one of the best ways to fix a leaky gut!  

The best fiber sources are non-processed seasonal fruits and vegetables from local sources, such as kale, carrots, and beets. The darker the color usually means higher fiber content and more.  

4. Eat Your Veggies: Eat the Rainbow

You’ve probably heard “eat your veggies” numerous times, and for many good reasons already stated. But did you know that the color or fruits and veggies often signifies what types of nutrients they contain, and how much? Orange and yellow fruits get their color from the antioxidants alpha- and beta-carotene. Many vegetables with an underlying or pronounced purple/blue hue (like eggplant and kale) contain high levels of phytochemicals – believed to protect cells from damage that can lead to cancer. So, do your best to include every color of the rainbow in order to get every nutrient required for a great gut! 

5. Eat More Polyphenols

Polyphenols are micronutrients – essential elements our bodies need – that come from plant-based foods. These vitamins and minerals are required for healthy development, disease prevention, and overall well-being. Several studies have found that seasonings (cloves, star anise, and dried peppermint), cocoa powder, and dark chocolate rank as some of the richest sources of polyphenols. Berries, non-berry fruits, beans, beans, nuts, vegetables, soy, black and green tea, and red wine are some other foods that also make this yummy list!  

Finding my way back to a healthy gut and overcoming anxiety was not always easy but, it was one of the best things I’ve ever done, mentally and physically. It’s also something anyone can do, even if they need help. I love supporting people as a virtual health coach and through my personal training and holistic health coaching. If you need support, sign up for a free consultation and for my newsletter on my website at www.ericajadehealth.com. Remember, keeping a healthy gut is key to a healthy brain, and good mental health. Don’t forget to mark your calendar for World Mental Health Day on October 10, 2020 and join me in supporting everyone that needs it!

Mediterranean POWER Bowl

Erica’s Favorite MightyMeals: Mediterranean Power Bowl

Connect with Erica on Instagram, Facebook and at www.ericajadehealth.com.

Sample Macronutrient Meal Plans For A High Carb, Low Carb and Keto Diet

Ask yourself what will take you further in your fitness journey: understanding why nutrient dense foods and exercise will help you reach your goals, or actually eating those foods and getting to the gym? 

That’s what this blog is about, focusing on moving from concept to application. In my previous blog, Counting Macros 101, I went over establishing macros based on your goals; below I am going to provide some sample meal plans that fit those macronutrient guidelines.

Below I have outlined sample meal plans and tips to hit three of the most popular dieting methods that are based on a macronutrient structure: High Carb Diet, Low Carb Diet, and Ketogenic Diet (Keto). I have used 1800 calories as a baseline for each day; if you aren’t sure where to start from a calorie standpoint, refer back to Counting Macros 101. Scroll through, and remember, the most important step is APPLICATION; try them out!

HIGH CARB DIET:
      • Protein: 30%
      • Carbs: 50%
      • Fat: 20%

TIPS:

      1. Focus on featuring low-fat proteins like chicken breast, cod, shrimp, lean ground turkey, and egg whites. 
        *Did you know you can filter by protein on the eatmightymeals.com website?
      2. Pair your proteins with vegetables and carbohydrate sources like brown rice, sweet potato, ezekiel toast, and quinoa.
        *Try using some of the bulk carb and veggie options on eatmightymeals.com to make your life easy!
      3. Focus on meals and snacks low in fat.
        *Try using the Filter by Macro tool on our website and setting grams of fat from 0-10. MightyMeals has over 20 meals with less than 10 grams of fat!

SAMPLE DAY:

Breakfast:

1.5 Cups Egg Whites w/ Veggies of choice

0.5 Cups Oatmeal w/ Cinnamon

0.5 Cups Blueberries 

Snack:

Apple

2 Tbsp. Peanut Butter

1 Container Greek Yogurt

Shredded Buffalo Chicken

Lunch:

MightyMeals Shredded Buffalo Chicken

Dinner:

6 oz. MightyMeals Bulk Shrimp

1 Cup MightyMeals Bulk Roasted Red Potatoes

1 Cup Veggies of Choice

LOW CARB DIET:
      • Protein: 40%
      • Carbs: 20%
      • Fats: 40%

TIPS:

      1. Focus on featuring fattier proteins like ground beef, steak, eggs, and salmon.
        *Bulk salmon, bistro steak, and southwestern egg bites would be great bulk options on our menu.
      2. Pair your proteins with healthy fats like avocado, oils and oil-based dressings, nuts and nut butters.
        *Our bulk arugula pesto is a healthy-fat-based condiment to hit your macros and liven up your meal prep.
      3. Focus on meals and snacks low in carbs.
        *Try using our Filter by Macro tool on our website and select “Low Carb” to see over 20 menu options with less than 25 grams of carbs.

SAMPLE DAY:

Breakfast:

MightyMeals Low Carb Breakfast

Snack:

Banana 

2 Tbsp. Peanut Butter

Chicken and Spaghetti Squash Primavera

Lunch:

8 oz. Skirt Steak

½ Avocado

1 Cup Sauteed Peppers and Onions w/ 0.5  tbsp. Olive Oil

Dinner:

MightyMeals Chicken and Spaghetti Squash Primavera

KETOGENIC (KETO) DIET:
      1. Protein: 25% 
      2. Carbs: 10%
      3. Fats: 65%

TIPS:

      1. Focus on eating fatty proteins like steak, ground beef, eggs, bacon, and salmon and cooking them with generous portions of  butter, EVOO, and/or oil.
        *
        Flank Steak, Salmon, and Bacon & Cheddar Egg Bites are great options from our A La Carte menu.
      2. Add healthy fats to all of your meals and snacks to meet the high demand of fat associated with this diet. Adding oils, oil-based dressings, oil-based condiments, avocado and nuts and nut butters to meals will aid in meeting Keto macros.
      3. Avoid carbs as much as possible. Vegetables will serve as your carbohydrate source.
        *Try our
        Filter by Macro tool on our website and set carbs from “0-10”. MightyMeals has over 20 options with less than 10 grams of carbs on our menu.

SAMPLE DAY:

Breakfast:

3 Pcs. MightyMeals Bulk Bacon & Cheddar Egg Bites

½ Avocado

Snack:

0.5 Cups Almonds

Lunch:

6 oz. Grilled Chicken Thigh

½  Avocado

1 Cup Veggies of Choice w/ 0.5 Tbsp. Butter

Dinner:

MightyMeals Chicken Cobb Salad

 

I hope these sample meal plans give you an idea of what a day of fitting your macros looks like. I encourage you to take action and put one of these examples into place. The best day to start was yesterday; so, start today!

About Chase McKesey: Chase McKesey, founder of TrophyBody Personal Training, grew up in Springfield, Virginia where his youth revolved around year-round sports. At the end of his athletic career, Chase severely missed the competition, comradery, as well as the physical and mental challenges that sport had provided him for so long. Fitness soon filled this void. The lessons learned on the field and the court translated into his workouts and eventually into his coaching. Like sports, everything in the gym was earned; never given. Chase believed strength, long-lasting health, and longevity can only be achieved through consistent effort and perseverance; much like a trophy at the end of championship season. On this principle, TrophyBody Personal Training was born. Chase was determined to coach and empower those willing to put in the work by putting them in the best possible position to succeed.

Since its inception in 2016, TrophyBody has helped 1,000’s of people earn a relationship with their health that they can wear proudly. TrophyBody has established itself as a community leader in its hometown of Washington D.C. as Chase has taken on health-based initiatives to include Mayor Muriel Bowser’s #FITDC campaign and being named Head Strength Coach for the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders. TrophyBody Online, the newest evolution of TrophyBody, is due early Spring 2020.

Chase’s Favorite MightyMeals Dish: Ropa Vieja

Ropa Vieja

Partner Spotlight: Burn Boot Camp

Partner Spotlight: Burn Boot Camp

By: Christine Bean

We recently caught up with Katie Meyers, franchise owner of Burn Boot Camp, to hear about their brand new facility in Woodbridge, VA, and how they plan to use MightyMeals to fuel their athletes and help them crush their goals. 

How did Burn Boot Camp get its start?

Katie: Burn Boot Camp is a franchise with 266 locations around the nation. The owners are a husband and wife team, Devan and Morgan Kline. Devan was a professional baseball player, and during training camp, he saw a lot of the sponsor mothers taking care of their families and putting themselves last. This inspired him to hold workout sessions for the moms, and it became a huge success.  After being let-go from the team, he decided that his next step would be to open a fitness facility just for moms. So, in 2011 he started Burn Boot Camp in a parking lot in Charlotte, NC with rusty dumbbells and only $600 to his name.  What started out as moms-only turned into women-only, and now we are co-ed and our clientele is families. We focus on empowering women, but we have really evolved and realize it takes a whole family, it takes a village.  Personally, I have been a member of Burn Boot Camp in Wake Forest, NC for a couple of years, and I knew 6 months in that I wanted to be a larger part of this community somehow. Woodbridge was the closest available territory, so I jumped on it. It has been amazing to step back and see the diverse population, all shapes, sizes, levels, join together in a safe and empowering environment.  Everyone has a common goal, pushing to be a better version of themselves and leaving the gym feeling like you can take on the world.  

What makes Burn Boot Camp unique?

Katie: We offer 45 minute camps that are a mix of strength and High Intensity Interval Training, taught by certified personal trainers in a group setting. Membership includes complimentary child watch, 15 minute personal meetings with your trainer to go over meal planning and any questions you may have, and the support of the community. Something that I really love is that everyday is a different workout; you will never do the same workout twice.  We also have our own Burn Nutrition protein powder, and we are releasing our own vegan protein and pre-workout as well.  We have 8 camps throughout the day, however during Covid we have decreased our capacity so time slots must be reserved. 

How did you get connected with Mighty Meals?

Katie: I found MightyMeals co-owner, Dan Graziano, via Instagram, and from there I went on the MightyMeals website because I was intrigued! After speaking with Dan, and reading about the meals, I could tell that the quality of the food was great and this was something that I definitely wanted to offer our clients.  The a la carte offerings are really what sold me when i thought about macros and portion control, and, being a mom myself, I personally love the new MightyKids meals!

How do you think MightyMeals will benefit your members?

Katie: I know that MightyMeals will help our members reach their fitness goals, help them stay on track with nutrition, and will add a factor of convenience by having meals already prepared for themselves and their families. It will also help our trainers as they hold these focus meetings with clients, as they can be confident in knowing that they are recommending meals packed with good, whole foods.  We feel extremely excited to have the opportunity to share this with our members, knowing that our athletes will be able to fuel themselves with proper nutrition which is exactly what MightyMeals is.

Shredded Buffalo Chicken

What’s your favorite MightyMeal?

Katie: Well, I root for the Buffalo Bills, because I married into it, so I would have to say the Shredded Buffalo Chicken. It’s just SO good! 

Connect with Burn Boot Camp

Follow Burn Boot Camp on Facebook or Instagram to stay up-to-date!

About Katie Meyers

Katie and her husband Jordan are the Franchise Partners at Burn Boot Camp Woodbridge. They live in Raleigh, NC with their daughters, Natalie (7), Caroline (3 1/2) and their rescue pup, Tucker (9). Both work in the medical field: Katie is a Registered Nurse and Jordan is a Podiatric Surgeon. Katie joined a local Burn Boot Camp 2 years ago and after her first camp, she was hooked! Then six months later, she expressed interest in opening up her own Burn Boot Camp because of the positive impact she had seen it make not only on her life, but every Burn member’s life. 

Burn Boot Camp offers unlimited 45-minute HIIT camps led by certified personal trainers, and everyday is a different workout. You will never do the same workout twice and they are always challenging mentally and physically. At Burn Boot Camp, we pride ourselves on making every member experience positive. Our team plus the other members are constantly encouraging and supporting each other to be the best version of themselves. With a Burn Boot Camp membership, members have access to our complimentary child watch, 1:1 Focus Meetings with their personal trainers and global membership.

How Do Different Exercises Impact Your Body Composition?

How Do Different Exercises Impact Your Body Composition?

By: EMP 180°

My name is Kim, a certified personal trainer and health coach at EMP 180° Weight Loss. I am passionate about nutrition and education and understand firsthand the importance of living a healthy lifestyle.

When a client comes to me and says they work out a lot, I generally find they are active anywhere between 2-5 hours per week. However, the majority of our clients are leading sedentary lifestyles. For this reason, I am grateful for In-Body’s research on exercise and the impact on body composition.  The article linked below provides research-based evidence that exercise has a direct impact on an individual’s health and body composition.

Both aerobic and resistance training assist in reduction in fat mass and increases in lean (fat free) mass. InBody’s research team identifies studies that show body composition improvements in adolescents as well as adults and the elderly when exercise is introduced.

As the obesity epidemic continues to rise, “a well-rounded exercise routine that touches on all types of fitness” is critical (InBody USA, 2019). Furthermore, combining proper nutrition with exercise will promote body composition changes. Proper nutrition accounts for approximately 80% of a person’s health and exercise accounts for about 20%. Therefore, a person can’t “exercise” their way out of a bad diet. On the flip side, humans were made for movement, not for cubicles. Ultimately, improving body composition is what makes daily activities and overall quality of life possible.

Click to read the full article from InBody.com

Let MightyMeals help YOU make healthy eating easy! Check out our rotating menu of more than 100 options, to include prepared meals, A La Carte and MightyKids!

Using the Project Approach for Learning at Home

Using the Project Approach for Learning at Home

By: Georgetown Hill Early School

I know that many of you reading this are likely having a similar experience to mine: You are dutifully guiding your elementary-school child/children through their online schoolwork, helping them navigate both the new technology and the age-old math word problems about cookies being divided among friends. You feel good about supporting your child in the completion of their “opinion writing” assignment, and get a kick out of the videos that your child and his/her classmates are making for each other about their favorite toys and favorite food. Maybe, like me, you also have a preschooler–so you are balancing online elementary school with online preschool and online ballet (are you ALSO learning how to do a plié via Zoom?!)

But perhaps you sometimes ask yourself—as I do—how can I really support their learning at home?

One strategy–that I have found to be a roaring success for my family during this quarantine–is the use of the Project Approach as a home-learning tool.

The Project Approach, in its simplest definition, is an in-depth exploration of events or objects in a child’s environment that takes place over time and is shaped by children’s interests and questions. As an instructional strategy, projects are typically carried out in three phases:

 

    1. Selecting a topic, teachers build common experiences by talking with children about their personal experiences to determine interests and helping children articulate specific questions as a topic emerges.
    2. Data collection, which emphasizes meaningful hands-on experiences. Children are researchers, gaining new information as they collect data to answer their questions. This phase is the bulk of the project investigation and takes place through direct and authentic experiences such as field trips, events, and interviews with visiting experts. Children can also gather data through secondary sources, including books, photos, videos, and websites.
    3. The culminating event, which is a time to conclude the experience, usually through a summarizing event or activity.

 

As a learning tool, projects are a meaningful way to incorporate multiple developmental domains like math, literacy, science, art, and social-emotional skills through investigations that the children themselves can shape.

This is one example of what it looked like at my house:

My daughter, who recently turned four, loves to be read Pinkalicious stories. In Pinkalicious and the Sick Day, Pinkalicious (yes, that is her actual name) drinks elderberry tea in bed while staying home from school. My daughter had many questions about elderberry tea: “What is an elderberry?” “Why is she drinking tea when she’s sick?” “Is the tea hot?” “Can I try tea sometime?” She kept asking questions about tea throughout the next day, so I used it as an opportunity for a collaborative family project–The Tea Party:

We read about different types of tea and where they come from (Social Studies/Geography!)

We smelled different types of tea we have at home to see which ones we might want to try (and also talked about caffeine….Science!)

We planned a Tea Party menu and made snacks, following some beloved recipes (Measurement is math!)

We created Tea Party invitations and placecards for our stuffed animal guests (Literacy!)

We set the table, chose music, and talked about our table manners (Social skills!)

All in all, it was a fun, authentic way for my daughter to get her questions answered, and to learn a whole host of other things in the process.

 

teaparty fun
tea party layout

 

As parents, we are all coping with quarantined life the best ways we know how—and this is just one of many ways to support learning at home. I am grateful that this approach seems to be working for my kids—and that it is creating happy memories for us all.

MightyKids by MightyMeals is the official school lunch provider for Georgetown Hill Early School.

Coming Together to Help Feed Families in Need

Coming Together to Help Feed Families in Need

Donate to Real Food for Kids and Enter Sweepstakes for Exclusive Prizes Including $200 GIft Card to MightyMeals!

Our Chefs Feeding Families co-collaborator, Silver Diner, just opened the doors to their new Alexandria location. To kick off their opening, they’re running an exclusive sweepstakes series benefiting Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families – an initiative providing free grab-and-go meals to local families in need affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since April, MightyMeals has been donating meals on a weekly basis to the initiative and collectively we have served over 90,000 free meals.

ENTER TO WIN EXCLUSIVE PRIZE PACKAGES FROM OUR RESTAURANT PARTNERS AND SPONSORS

Select the Amount to Donate:
$10 Donation = 10 Entries & Feeds a Family of Four for a Day
$50 Donation = 75 Entries & Feeds a Family of Four for a Week
$100 Donation = 200 Entries & Feeds a Family of Four for a month

Receive additional entries for sharing the Sweepstakes link on social media and for each donation you bring in.

One winner will be randomly drawn three days after the entry period closes.

EACH WEEK WE WILL ANNOUNCE A NEW PRIZE PACKAGE

week #2 prize

THE ULTIMATE FOODIE EXPERIENCE

Whether you’d like to dine at a local favorite, to indulge in delicious meals prepared for you in the comfort of your home, to get inspired to make a celebrity’s recipe, or to enjoy a cozy outdoor experience, we have you covered!

The Ultimate Foodie Experience includes:

— $100 Hot Lola’s (by Kevin Tien) Gift Card

— $100 RASA Gift Card

— $200 Gift Card by MightyMeals meal prep service

— $100 Quincy’s South Bar and Grille

— Grammy Award-winning Questlove’s Mixtape Potluck cookbook featuring recipes from Chef Kevin Tien, Jimmy Fallon, Natalie Portman, Padma Lakshmi, Martha Stewart, Jessica Biel, Amy Poehler, Fred Armisen, Maya Rudolph, Zooey Deschanel, Gabrielle Union, Marisa Tomei, Stanley Tucci, Yvonne Orji, Q-Tip, Ashley Graham, Andrew Zimmern, Eric Ripert and dozens of others.

City Bonfires S’mores Kit – 2 City Bonfires, 4 roasting sticks, s’mores Ingredients: marshmallows, graham crackers, chocolate.

week #1 prize

BAYOU EXPERIENCE

FROM CELEBRITY CHEF DAVID GUAS & BUTTER PAT INDUSTRIES

– 30-minute private cooking session via zoom from David Guas
– 2 personalized signed cookbooks
– 1 Butter Pat Industries “Heather” cast iron skillet

Stay connected and check Real Food for Kids’ Facebook page for the weekly prize package announcement on Mondays at 10 a.m.

ABOUT CHEFS FEEDING FAMILIES

Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families is a joint project with Washington, D.C. metro-area restaurants including Silver Diner, Bayou Bakery, American Son, RASA, Pizzeria Paradiso, Design Cuisine and Good Food Company to provide nourishing grab-and-go meals to school children and their families impacted by school shutdowns and job losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Co-founded in March 2020 by Chef David Guas of Bayou Bakery in Arlington, Va. and Real Food for Kids, Chefs Feeding Families provides funding for food, supplies, and restaurant staff to feed as many families as possible and create employment opportunities within the restaurant community also impacted by COVID-19 closures. Free grab-and-go meals are now being served at over 17 distribution sites across the DC metro area. Together we have provided over 90,000 meals to children and families in need.

8 Ways to Celebrate National Wellness Month

By: Christine Bean

August is National Wellness Month, and it’s a perfect time to focus on taking care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally.  Especially during these stressful times, it’s important to make self-care, healthy eating, and stress management a priority in order to feel better than ever! Make it a goal to try one of these 8 ways to boost your wellness each day.

    1. Exercise. Just 30 minutes of exercise per day can be a major mood-booster. Not only does it benefit your mental health, it keeps you at a healthy weight, gives you more energy, and assists with pain management.
    2. Drink more water. Hydration is so important for your body, especially during these hot summer months. Water helps transport nutrients to give you energy, and even lubricates your joints. It’s the key to digestion, clearer skin, and even weight loss!
    3. Spend time outside. Fresh air can do a mind and body good, especially if you’re exercising outdoors. Spending time in nature can improve your memory, lower your blood pressure, and boost your mood.
    4. Practice deep breathing.  Stress and anxiety can impact your breathing without you even realizing it, causing you to take shallow breaths, or even holding your breath for a period of time, causing your body to tense-up.  Practicing deep breathing techniques, and concentrating on breathing from your diaphragm, can make a big difference.
    5. Get enough sleep. Sleep is a huge factor in our mental and physical well-being. Getting an adequate amount of sleep each night helps keep your weight in check, your risk of depression and anxiety low, your memory sharp, your immune system strong, and so much more.
    6. Take a social media break. With information constantly being thrown at us via social media, it’s important that we take time each day to disconnect from technology in order to boost our mental and physical health. A digital detox can help with anxiety, sleep, mood, and lots more. Aim to put your phone away one hour before bedtime to allow your brain to wind-down before falling asleep.
    7. Call a friend or family member. Now that social distancing is part of our daily lives, it’s more important than ever to stay connected to those we love. Friends and family play a huge role in our mental health, and social connection can be an instant mood-booster. Make it a goal to call or video chat with someone important to you every day, even if it’s just for 5 minutes!
    8. Roasted Sweet Potatoes

      Cut back on sugar and load up on fruits and veggies. The average American consumes 22 teaspoons of sugar each day, and much of it is hidden in salad dressings, alcohol, coffee creamer, etc. Sugar depletes your energy and makes you feel tired and grumpy (afternoon slump anyone?)  If you have a sweet tooth, you can still satisfy it by swapping your sugary sweets for juicy peaches, plump blueberries, or MightyMeals’ Roasted Sweet Potatoes. Your body and mind will thank you for it!

3 Activities You Can Do At Home

Odds are you have been spending a lot of time at home lately. Bring some creativity into your life. It’s a great antidote to cabin fever. Here are three fun activities you can do to stretch your creativity. 

    1. Tie-Dye

      Tie-Dye has skyrocketed in popularity this year. Everyone could use a little splash of color and fun these days! Tie-Dye Kit purchases are on the rise as many people grasp for color therapy and things to do. The Etsy and Pinterest crafting culture has been going strong for several years now, but with people stuck at home, crafts like Tie-Dye have become one of the main go-to’s. 

      Make Your Own Tie-Dye

      Tie-dye truly became the biggest trend and the best part is that you can easily make it yourself! Experience the fun and joy of taking your old white clothes and turning into a rainbow of excitement. Tie-dye is probably one of the most fun hobbies to take on, and it’s something you can do with the entire family! Grab a Tie-Die at Home Kit and you will be whipping up tie-dye shirts in no time.

    2. Origami

      This classic Japanese art form has made a comeback the last few months. Even if you can’t get your hands on some authentic Japanese Origami paper, plain computer paper will do. This is a hobby and craft that engages both your mind and fine motor skills, making it ideal for doing when you have lots of time on your hands. With just one piece of paper, you can fold it into anything you desire. A crane, a heart, a box, a dog, even a jumping frog. It’s all possible with some well planned folds. Origami is awesome and fun at the same time. 

    3. Drawing

      Drawing is simple! Like origami, you don’t necessarily need any fancy tools. Even just a pen and paper will be enough to start doodling. It’s an easy way to slip into a realm of fantasy, away from the challenging times out in the real world.

What activities have you picked up while spending more time at home? Did you start a new workout program? Or learn to cook a new dish? We’d love to hear what you have been up to! Email us at [email protected] and we will share some of the cool things you have been doing! In the meantime, don’t forget to place your order by midnight for this week’s delivery dates! Happy crafting!

MightyMeals Joins Forces with KEEN of Greater DC

MightyMeals is excited to partner with local nonprofit, KEEN, which stands for Kids Enjoy Exercise Now. Founded in 1992, KEEN is based on a simple idea: pair a trained volunteer coach with a young person with disabilities and let them discover what they can accomplish together. Over the last 28 years, KEEN Greater DC-Baltimore has grown from one program in Montgomery County, MD to 37 programs in Maryland, Washington, DC and Virginia. Current programs include sports, swim, basketball, soccer, music, tae kwon do, tennis, dance, bowling, fitness, yoga and KEEN club.

“I was excited that an organization like KEEN reached out to join forces with MightyMeals. Most of my family are educators and both my father and mother have specifically worked with children with special needs. Having two family members with Down’s syndrome, I know how important it is to support groups like KEEN. It is my hope that what we are doing with KEEN makes a big impact and it is an organization we can work with for years to come,” said MightyMeals co-founder, Dan Graziano. 

Access to healthy food and a healthy lifestyle is at the core of MightyMeals’ mission. KEEN Greater DC-Baltimore provides more than 1,300 program hours each month to over 500 children, teens and young adults with significant developmental and physical disabilities such as autism, cerebral palsy and Down syndrome. For many of these children, the time spent with KEEN is the only opportunity they have to improve their developmental and social skills through physical activity.  It also gives them a place where they are accepted and find a sense of belonging.

MightyMeals is donating a portion of proceeds back to KEEN and building out a partnership that will include nutrition workshops and MightyMeals food donations. “As a partner and communications consultant for MightyMeals, it is so important to me that we give back to our community. My sister has a brain injury, and the activities that she has been able to do, such as horseback riding, has been such an important part of her recovery. What KEEN provides children with special needs and their families is invaluable,” said Tiffany Anzalone McCasland, MightyMeals Partner. 

Learn more about KEEN and how you can support their important program at https://www.keengreaterdc.org/.

Plant Forward: MightyMeals Launches New Plant-Based Menu

By: Christine Bean

For years, research has proven the benefits of a plant-based diet, and it seems that more and more people are finally catching on. Here at MightyMeals, we are all about empowering people to live healthier lives, and that includes providing our customers with menu choices that will keep their mind, body, and spirit in tip-top shape. Whether you are eliminating meat from your diet for health or environmental reasons, or are simply aiming to eat more veggies for a nutritional boost, you’ll find that MightyMeals new plant-based menu is packed with flavor, protein, and variety. You won’t even miss the meat, we promise! 

Five Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet

      1. Prevents Disease
        Research shows that a plant-forward, whole foods diet can prevent, and sometimes even reverse, chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers. It can also minimize your risk of stroke and high cholesterol.
      2. Helps Maintain a Healthy Weight
        Plant-based diets are packed with fiber and healthy nutrients that help fill you up without  adding extra calories, and in turn, you drop the pounds. By replacing certain meats with vegetables, your risk for obesity drops significantly.
      3. Reduces Inflammation
        Chronic internal inflammation can trigger a variety of health issues, and never fully disappears until you figure out the root of the problem. Diet is one of the best ways to heal your body and combat this common issue. A plant-based diet is loaded with phytonutrients, which have tons of anti-inflammatory benefits, and are low in toxins and bacteria.
      4. Boosts Your Immune System
        Plants are packed with vitamins and nutrients that your body needs to fight-off infection. The antioxidants found in plants help strengthen your immune system and keep your cells healthy while fighting-off germs.
      5. Keeps Your Brain Strong
        Research shows that the more vegetables you incorporate into your diet, the lesser your chance of developing Alzheimer’s or dementia later in life. The gut is connected to the brain, and gut inflammation has been linked to depression and anxiety. Those who follow a plant-based diet experience a sharper mind and positive mental well-being, and less symptoms of anxiety and depression. 

Check out MightyMeals new plant-based menu offerings, and add some to your next order for delivery right to your door! 

      • Vegan Mediterranean Bowl

        Vegan Mediterranean Bowl: Garlic/herb roasted tofu with red/white quinoa, paprika spiced chickpeas, artichoke hearts and roasted heirloom cherry tomato medley over baby spinach. Served with a side of roasted red pepper aioli. 

      • Vegan Lasagna: Beyond Meat & bell pepper bolognese layered with  vegan mozzarella and noodles.
      • Vegan Chipotle Bowl: Chipotle de adobo marinated Beyond meat crumble served with sautéed black beans, cilantro jasmine rice, corn/tomato relish, roasted peppers/onions, pickled fresno’s and spring onion. 
      • Vegan Bolognese with Spaghetti Squash: Spaghetti served with Beyond Meat & bell pepper bolognese and spinach. Garnished with parsley.

Coming Soon!! 

      • Cauliflower Curry
      • Tofu Poke Bowl
      • Caponata Quinoa Bowl
      • Stuffed Portobello
      • Beyond Sausage Spaghetti Squash
      • Beyond Breakfast Bowl

MightyMeals Features Real Food for Kids Culinary Challenge Recipe

MightyMeals Features Real Food for Kids Culinary Challenge Recipe

50% of the Proceeds from the Herndon High School Award Winning Carne Asada Steak Will Go to the Real Food for Kids Chefs Feeding Families Initiative

Real Food for Kids, a nonprofit focused on elevating school food, hosted a culinary challenge with more than 20 regional high school and middle school culinary teams competing from Fairfax, Prince William, Alexandria City, Arlington, Loudoun, Montgomery County and Washington, D.C. 

This year, due to COVID-19, the Culinary Challenge was postponed and has just been conducted virtually with a judging panel comprised of Chef David Guas (Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery,) Chef Ype Von Hengst (Silver and Silver Diner,) Tim Ma (American Son and Laoban Dumplings,) and Ruth Gresser (Pizzeria Paradiso.)

The following are the Culinary Challenge winners:  

      • 1st Place: Takoma Park Middle School, Rasta Ramen Bowl
      • 2nd Place: Chantilly Academy, Mediterranean Chicken Kabobs with Orzo Salad
      • 3rd Place, Herndon High School, Carne Asada Tacos with Asian Slaw

MightyMeals is proud to have teamed up with the Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families initiative and since April has donated close to 2,000 MightyMeals to families across the DC metro area. 

Starting July 27, MightyMeals is also featuring the 3rd Place recipe on their menu as a fundraiser. 50% of the proceeds from the Real Food for Kids Carne Asada Steak will go to Real Food for Kids Chefs Feeding Families Initiative. 

Carne Asada Steak

Order the Herndon High School Carne Asada Steak and help support Real Food for Kids! 

Real Food for Kids Carne Asada Steak: Carne asada marinated flank steak served with cilantro jasmine rice, sautéed black beans, mango relish, and roasted pepper and onions. 

About Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families | Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families is a joint project with Washington, D.C., metro-area restaurants to provide nourishing grab-and-go meals to school children and their families impacted by closed schools to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Co-founded by Chef David Guas of Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery in Arlington, Va. and Real Food for Kids, Chefs Feeding Families provides funding for food, supplies, and restaurant staff to feed as many families as possible and create employment opportunities within the restaurant community also impacted by COVID-19 closures. Visit www.realfoodforkids.org/chefsfeedingfamilies to find the latest information about meal availability in your area and learn how to provide more meals for families in need.

MightyMeals Launches new Delivery TimeFrame / Live Update SMS Notification System

MightyMeals Launches New Delivery TimeFrame / Live Update SMS Notification System

You Can Now Track Your MightyMeals from Our Kitchen to Your Door in Real Time 

This week we are launching a new Text Message Notification System that will allow you to track your MightyMeals order in real time.

On the morning of your delivery you will receive a text message between 7am and 8am letting you know a specific delivery window. You will then receive a second text message when your driver is 10 minutes away. You will be able to track your MightyMeals order in real time en route fresh from our kitchen to your door! 

It is important that you provide a valid cell phone number when you place your order. Please also note that you will no longer be able to contact your driver directly, however, if you have any special delivery instructions (for example: please don’t ring the doorbell, please leave meals in cooler, etc) you can put them in the notes section when you place your order. 

While you will not be able to request specific delivery time, you will now be able to know exactly when your MightyMeals order will arrive! If you are unable to be home you are welcome to leave out a cooler for your order, just make sure it is large enough to fit all of your MightyMeals! 

Thank you for supporting our locally owned, small business! We appreciate you, MightyFam!

MightyMeals Donates More than 1400 Meals to Real Food For Kids: Chefs Feeding Families Initiative

MightyMeals Donates More than 1400 Meals to Real Food For Kids: Chefs Feeding Families Initiative 

By: Tiffany Anzalone McCasland

MightyMeals is proud to have teamed up with the Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families initiative. Together with other local restaurant collaborators, we have provided over 60,000 meals to families across the DC metro area to children and families in need affected by school shutdowns and job losses due to COVID-19.

While restrictions are being lifted statewide, the devastating impact of COVID-19 on school children remains. Chefs Feeding Families’ ability to provide the meals children need to thrive is greatly helped by your generous support.

Since April, MightyMeals has donated more than 1,400 MightyMeals, in addition to produce, to the Chefs Feeding Families Initiative. 

Your donation of any amount will ensure that additional children will have access to the healthy meals they require to keep their minds and bodies strong. Please consider donating here.

For more information on the Chefs Feeding Families initiative, please visit http://www.realfoodforkids.org/chefsfeedingfamilies

About Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families | Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families is a joint project with Washington, D.C., metro-area restaurants to provide nourishing grab-and-go meals to school children and their families impacted by closed schools to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Co-founded by Chef David Guas of Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery in Arlington, Va. and Real Food for Kids, Chefs Feeding Families provides funding for food, supplies, and restaurant staff to feed as many families as possible and create employment opportunities within the restaurant community also impacted by COVID-19 closures. Visit www.realfoodforkids.org/chefsfeedingfamilies to find the latest information about meal availability in your area and learn how to provide more meals for families in need.

About MightyMeals | Founded in 2015 by two fitness professionals and a classically trained chef, MightyMeals believes high-quality, healthy food should be accessible to everyone. The Burke, Virginia company provides a convenient, healthy meal delivery service made with locally sourced ingredients by chefs, offering a wide array of meals on a menu that changes weekly. MightyMeals has more than 50 pick-up locations across the D.C. metro area. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier lives by being the leading provider of healthy, high-quality, locally sourced, chef-prepared meals that are delivered to you. Take the guesswork out of your nutrition so you can spend your time doing the things you enjoy. Visit www.eatmightymeals.com and use code TRYUS to receive a free meal. Follow MightyMeals at @eatmightymeals for updates on new locations and tasting events.

For more information:

Tiffany Anzalone McCasland

[email protected]

SLEEP: Are You Getting Enough ZZZ

The underrated component of our ability to achieve a healthy mind and body.

My name is Kim and I am a health coach and the manager of the Potomac location of EMP180°.

I usually start my day with both a run and weight workout. My alarm typically goes off at 4:00 a.m. so I can squeeze in my workout before my family wakes up, but today was a little different. I had accidentally turned my alarm off the night before and slept past my usual wake-up time. I woke up suddenly, disoriented –  because I was dreaming about running. Someone in my dream was shouting “run, run, run.” At that point, it was already 5am; I was groggy, late, and my day was already off to a rough start.

My routine is rigorous – it’s hard to balance mom duties, a full-time job, and keeping up with my fitness routine. I build fitness into my morning because I know how great it makes me feel both mentally and physically. But today was unusual. I shouldn’t have listened to that voice in my dream, because my body was telling me something completely different: to continue resting.

A few hours later, my workout was complete, and I was driving to work. I opened my Oura Ring app (which measures sleep quality) to look at my sleep score. I noticed my heart rate variability (HRV) score was atypically low, indicating that my mind, body (or both) were under stress.

I was surprised, because I didn’t feel stressed, but my sleep data told a different story. I racked my brain for clues. Was I subconsciously stressed about the virus? Perhaps I was stressed because my 5-year-old can’t go to school or have playdates with her friends. Or maybe I was stressed because I have to wear a mask and gloves everywhere I go, and that only reminds me of how much risk still exists out in the world.

Maybe I was worried about being infected with the virus…or maybe it’s simply the perpetual fear we all have, the fear of the unknown.

Here’s the thing: stress and a lack of sleep can take an immense toll on our bodies – and sometimes we aren’t even aware. When we deprive our bodies of sleep, everything — from our mental acuity to the foods that we crave — changes. When I am sleep-deprived, I no longer crave healthy foods like the eggs and veggies that I typically pack for lunch. I’m hankering for a bagel and cream cheese, maybe even a donut. I also become more reliant on coffee to wake me up. It then becomes a vicious cycle – overconsuming caffeine can lead to lower quality sleep.

Inadequate sleep and stress cause the body to produce a hormone called cortisol – it’s often just referred to as the stress hormone. High levels of cortisol cause the body to store fat at the visceral level, and that fat is linked to many chronic diseases — including heart disease and diabetes.

As a health coach, I talk with my clients about several factors and behaviors that contribute to a healthy lifestyle. Managing stress, getting adequate sleep in accordance with what your body needs, nourishing yourself with proper nutrition, and movement are all important. When any one of these is out of balance, we run the risk of being unhealthy – and when we’re short on time, our sleep tends to suffer as we deprioritize it.

I always encourage my clients to slow down and listen to their bodies. As for me, I’ll plan on starting to practice what I preach.

Here are some things you can do to ensure that you are getting a good night’s sleep:

      1. Keep the same bedtime and wake-up time on most (better yet: ALL) days of the week.
      2. No electronics in the bedroom.
      3. Take a warm shower or bath before bed.
      4. If using electronics prior to bed, wear blue light filtering glasses.
      5. Consider taking a Melatonin or a Magnesium supplement.
      6. Reduce intense physical activity 3 hours before bed.
      7. No caffeine after 12pm.
      8. Increase physical activity / exercise – especially in the first half of the day.
      9. Read an actual book prior to bed.
      10. Cut out the booze, especially within 3 hours of bed.
      11. Eat fewer processed foods and reduce sugar consumption.
      12. Keep the bedroom temperature cool (68 degrees in optimal) and dark.

ABOUT EMP180°EMP180° offers personalized nutrition and weight loss programs designed to help individuals and entire families permanently change their health. Our highly trained nutrition coaches work with clients to help them transform their eating habits, achieve and maintain a target weight. We then provide life-long support, critical to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and optimal health long-term. For more information, please visit https://www.emp180.com/.

Partner Spotlight: Fitness Edge

This week, we caught up with Tungi Kelley, owner of Fitness Edge in Gaithersburg, MD, to learn how this neighborhood gym is succeeding in making fitness fun and affordable, and how MightyMeals is keeping their athletes on track when it comes to their nutrition goals. 

How did Fitness Edge get its start? 
Tungi: I opened Fitness Edge in May of 2015.  I wanted a gym with a training atmosphere that I could put my own personal spin on and just make it fun.  My previous job in the fitness industry was in a serious atmosphere; it was strict and not enjoyable. I knew that I wanted this environment to feel fun.  If people aren’t laughing and having fun, then I feel like I’ve failed! The type of classes we offer are essentially a hybrid of HIIT training with strength training.  The most dreaded day of the week is Wednesday; cardio day! Our high-powered weight training involves barbells mixed-in with HIIT, which is unusual. We also offer one-on-one personal training in-between classes.  

What makes Fitness Edge unique?
Tungi: Our community is very tight-knit, and I feel that’s what separates us from most gyms.  The workouts are really challenging, so everyone is going through the battlefield together.  It’s cool to see everyone look at each other at the end of class like, “yes we made it, we did it! It creates a great atmosphere, a community that’s naturally molded together.  We have get-togethers every month; we had a SuperBowl party at the gym, we have a pool party in the summer, we want to bring everyone together outside of the gym.  The cool part about it is, you’re having so much fun you forget you are getting in shape in the process.  We’re a black-owned business, and the members of our community are extremely diverse. We welcome all different races, ages, genders, shapes and sizes.  We have clients that range in ages from 7 years old to 68 years old.  There’s no limit in our demographic; collegiate athletes, professional athletes, people who have never worked out a day in their life. All are welcome. 

How has the Coronavirus affected your business?
Tungi: During the Covid-19 crisis, we have been able to operate outdoors without limitations because we have a lot of space in the parking lot of our gym. Everyone wears a mask to grab the equipment in the gym and then goes back outside to workout. We stay outside unless it’s pouring rain.  We take the health and safety of our members very seriously, and have taken full safety precautions. We have a professional disinfectant sprayer, everyone wipes down their equipment with disinfectant wipes after use, and we keep 10-15 feet away from each other when working-out. We are lucky to have a large enough parking lot in our facility that allows us to take those measures, and we have not had to put a cap on any of the classes. There has been a huge spike in personal training, people feel more comfortable doing one-on-one workouts, so we have been doing a ton of those and utilizing the whole gym and back stairwells to make it fun.

How did you get connected to MightyMeals?
Tungi: We were with another company that basically went out-of-business overnight, and that’s when MightyMeals co-founder, Dan Graziano, reached out to us.  He came and checked out the location and told me all about how the MightyMeals partnership would work and what they had to offer.  I knew it was going to be mutually beneficial for sure!  

How does MightyMeals benefit your members?
Tungi: It gives them the opportunity to have real structure in their diet.  Diet is 80% of this whole thing, and they are getting a strong 20% from us! The other hours of the day that they aren’t with us, we need to know that they’re being taken care of.  If you’re following the guidelines and not slipping-up on your meals, then you’ll be set! That’s why I love MightyMeals.  It takes the guesswork out. 

Caribbean Jerk Salmon

What’s your favorite MightyMeal?
Tungi: Well, salmon is my favorite food in general, so I’d definitely say the Caribbean Jerk Salmon.  MightyMeals knocked it out of the park with that one! 

About Tungi Kelley | Tungi is the owner and head trainer at Fitness Edge MD. His background in semi-pro football and NFL Combine means his specialties lie in football drills, speed, and agility training, along with strength and bodyweight exercises. As a former Training Director at Bally Total Fitness and with over 12 years of hands-on training experience, he knows how to get you where you want to be!

Connect with Fitness Edge | Follow Fitness Edge on Facebook and Instagram to stay up-to-date!

What to Do When You Have a Picky Eater

What to Do When You Have a Picky Eater

By: Georgetown Hill Early School

Is your little one refusing to eat anything other than chicken nuggets? Or would he or she rather play than eat anything at all?

If “picky eating” happens in your household, you’re not alone. Many parents worry about what their children eat — and don’t eat. And picky eating is often the norm for toddlers and preschoolers. After the rapid growth of infancy, when babies usually triple in weight, a toddler’s growth rate – and appetite – tends to slow down.

Young children are also beginning to develop food preferences–A toddler’s favorite food one day may hit the floor the next, or a snubbed food might suddenly become the one he or she can’t live without! For weeks, they may eat 1 or 2 preferred foods – and nothing else.

Try not to get frustrated by this typical toddler behavior. Just make healthy food choices available and know that, with time, your child’s appetite and eating behaviors will level out. In the meantime, here are some tips that can help you get through the picky eater stage:

Less is more: Sometimes as parents, we feel if we give children more food they will eat more. However, that is often not the case and children can become overwhelmed by large portions. A little food from each good group is a great way to start.

Be colorful: The more colorful the plate is, the more interested children are in eating what’s on it! Strawberries, blueberries, and avocados are all bright in color (and delicious!)

Try Dips: Children love dipping their food! Even though this can be messy, try different types of dip: salad dressing, MightyMeals’ hummus, yogurt, salsa, etc. to see if this encourages your child to eat more veggies and fruits.

Be patient with new foods: Young children often touch or smell new foods and might even put tiny bits in their mouths and then take them back out again. Your child might need repeated exposure to a new food before he or she takes the first bite. Encourage your child by talking about a food’s color, shape, aroma and texture — not whether it tastes good. Serve new foods along with your child’s favorite foods.

Recruit your child’s help: At the grocery store, ask your child to help you select fruits, vegetables and other healthy foods. Don’t buy anything that you don’t want your child to eat. At home, encourage your child to help you rinse veggies, stir batter or set the table.

Don’t be a short-order cook: Preparing a separate meal for your child after he or she rejects the original meal might promote picky eating. Encourage your child to stay at the table for the designated mealtime — even if he or she doesn’t eat.

Don’t offer dessert as a reward: Withholding dessert sends the message that dessert is the best food, which might only increase your child’s desire for sweets. You might select one or two nights a week as dessert nights and skip dessert the rest of the week — or redefine dessert as fruit, yogurt or other healthy choices.

Keep in mind that your child’s eating habits won’t likely change overnight — but the small steps you take each day can help promote a lifetime of healthy eating. Check out the new MightyMeals’ MightyKids menu – sure to be a HIT with your picky eater! 

Georgetown Hill Early School: MightyMeals is the official school lunch partner of Georgetown Hill Early School, a non-profit organization based in Maryland with thirteen campuses. GHES offers programs for infants, preschool, before and after elementary school and summer camp.

MightyMeals Launches New MightyKids Menu

 MightyMeals Launches New MightyKids Menu

The DC area’s favorite meal prep company, MightyMeals, has now expanded their menu offerings to include MightyKids; healthy, chef-prepared, dietitian-approved, kids meals. These delicious, refrigerated meals are delivered fresh to your door four times per week.  “Research shows kids learn better, are healthier, and their concentration improves with a balanced meal. That’s why we created MightyKids, to ensure that healthy food is accessible to everyone,” said Dan Graziano, co-founder of MightyMeals. 

The MightyKids menu showcases a variety of hot and cold offerings that will be sure to please the pickiest of eaters. Some of the options include: 

Marzano’s Spaghetti & Meatballs

Marzano’s Spaghetti & Meatballs: Spaghetti served with a turkey meatball in marinara sauce topped with parmesan cheese

Salmon Patty Cakes: Roasted Atlantic salmon cake served with boiled couscous and roasted vegetable medley

Rock & Roll-Up

Rock & Roll-Up: Ham and cheddar roll-up served with apple slices

Orzo So Good: Orzo pasta salad with roasted tomatoes and spinach, and chopped chicken

MightyMeals is proud to partner with Real Food For Kids: Chefs Feeding Families, a joint initiative with Washington, D.C. metro-area restaurants to provide nourishing grab-and-go meals to families impacted by school closures and job losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since April 2nd, MightyMeals has delivered over 1,000 healthy, ready-to-eat meals. The initiative was co-founded by Chef David Guas of Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery in Arlington, Virginia, and Real Food for Kids. 

As the official school lunch partner of Georgetown Hill Early School, a non-profit organization based in Maryland with thirteen campuses, MightyMeals is committed to offering students and parents an easy and nutritious school lunch solution. GHES offers programs for infants, preschool, before and after elementary school, and summer camp. “By partnering with Georgetown Hill Early School, as their school lunch provider, we are ensuring that kids have safe, healthy school lunch options,” says Dan Graziano. 

With MightyKids, busy parents will have peace of mind knowing that their kids are eating fresh, nutrient-rich foods delivered right to their door.  “As a mom, I know that every moment with your family is precious,” remarks Tiffany Anzalone McCasland, MightyMeals Partner and Communications Consultant. “MightyMeals helps me save time, while feeding my son healthy, delicious food conveniently.” 

About MightyMeals

Founded in 2015 by two fitness professionals and a classically trained chef, MightyMeals believes high-quality, healthy food should be accessible to everyone. The Burke, Virginia company provides a convenient, healthy meal delivery service made with locally sourced ingredients by chefs, offering a wide array of meals on a menu that changes weekly. MightyMeals has more than 50 pick-up locations and provides home delivery across the D.C. metro area. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier lives by being the leading provider of healthy, high-quality, locally sourced, chef-prepared meals that are delivered to you. Take the guesswork out of your nutrition so you can spend your time doing the things you enjoy. Visit www.eatmightymeals.com and use code TRYUS to receive a free meal. Follow MightyMeals at @eatmightymeals for updates on new locations and tasting events.

Rep Your Prep: MightyMeals Launches Merchandise Store

Rep Your Prep: MightyMeals Launches Merchandise Store

Have you always wanted to “Rep Your Meal Prep” company? You can now shop MightyMeals apparel on our new online merchandise store. The MightyMeals Merchandise Store features 8 new products that includes 3 styles of hats, a koozie, t-shirts, hoodies, tanks, and even a shaker bottle. There are limited quantities of each item and prices range from $3 to $27.

Emotional Eating During Difficult Times

Is the uncertainty surrounding the “new norm” causing you to feel stressed? ls social distancing making you feel isolated? Bored? Hungry? For many of us, eating is not always a response to physical hunger. Instead, we often turn to food for comfort, and impulsively reach for junk food, sweets, and other unhealthy foods. Emotional eating is triggered by our feelings, and it usually makes us feel much worse after the initial surge of pleasure passes. Not only does the original emotional issue remain, but it’s amplified by feeling guilty for overeating.

Emotional eating can take the form of overeating, eating more frequently than usual, or craving specific comfort or junk foods. It’s normal to eat emotionally when we are partaking in a celebration – hello, birthday cake with buttercream frosting! Certain foods spark a warm and desired feeling of happiness, reward, and nostalgia, but there are other common moods that often trigger emotional eating: stress, anxiety, depression, and boredom. The urge to eat unhealthy foods is most prominent when we’re most emotionally vulnerable, and it can be a way to distract ourselves from the feelings and emotions that we don’t want to address. It can easily become a soothing habit – we start to eat on autopilot.

The urge to eat, snack, or reach for comfort foods can strike so quickly, we might easily mistake it for physical hunger. How do we know if our hunger is real and something we should act upon? Here are a few things to consider:

Emotional hunger usually comes on suddenly, whereas there is typically a slow-build to physical hunger. The next time you suddenly find yourself craving food, check in: When was the last time you ate? Was it one hour or several hours ago? Spacing between meals will vary depending on the person, but if you ate a healthy, balanced meal an hour ago and are feeling hungry again, it may be emotionally driven.

Satiation is short-lived with emotional hunger. This makes sense because when we emotionally eat, we’re not actually addressing what we’re really hungry for….is it anxiety? What’s making you anxious and how can you calm yourself (without food)? Boredom? Are there other activities that can fill your time? Think about the things that are nourishing spiritually and emotionally: a hobby, being active, a prayer or meditation routine, and deepening personal relationships. The key to satisfying emotional hunger is to identify the underlying negative emotions you’re feeling.

Here are some tips to help stave off cravings when negative emotions threaten to trigger emotional eating:

    1. Be Aware. Just like any habit you want to break, awareness is the first step in identifying whether or not you are struggling with emotional eating. Keep a journal to track whenever you feel hungry. Note the time of day, the activity you’re doing (or not doing), and how you’re feeling (a smile or frown face will do). Also, notice where in your body you feel the hunger. Try keeping track for a few days and see if you notice any patterns.
    1. Have a hunger reality check. Give the craving time to pass. When hunger strikes suddenly, take a quick inventory and respond honestly. Where do you feel the hunger? Is it in your stomach? Chest? Or is the idea of food appealing? Are you craving something salty or sweet? When was your last meal? When was your last glass of water? When you have a craving, can you pause long enough to imagine eating the food and truly feeling better after you eat it? There are no “right” answers. Just get in the habit of checking in with yourself and note your responses.
    1. Fight boredom. Instead of snacking when you’re not hungry, distract yourself and substitute a healthier behavior. Take a walk, watch a movie, play with your cat, listen to music, read, surf the internet or call a friend.
    1. Be mindful of triggers. Slowing down when we eat is crucial for distinguishing between feeling comfortably satiated versus uncomfortably stuffed. Whenever you’re eating, be sure to sit at a table. Try not to eat at your desk or in front of the TV. If you’re always eating or snacking while watching television, mindlessly grabbing food before you sit down to tune in becomes a habit. If you’re going to have an evening snack, have it at the table so you can disassociate eating with the couch. If you tend to snack or drink soda in your car, only doing this at a table will mitigate the Pavlov’s-dog-response, i.e. getting in the car and craving soda.
    1. Select healthy snacks. If you feel the urge to eat between meals, choose a healthy snack. Fresh fruit, nuts, string cheese or veggies with hummus are excellent choices. MightyMeals’ new Chickpea Hummus is a great choice! 
    1. Take away temptation. Don’t keep hard-to-resist comfort foods in your home. Also, never go grocery shopping on an empty stomach, or when you’re in an emotionally fragile state – sad, angry, depressed. Delay shopping until you have your emotions in check. Our environment can also play a big role in our eating habits; even subtle things like food advertisements and the size of the dishes we use can subconsciously impact our cravings. Ensure you have plenty of healthy options at home. MightyMeals makes it easy and convenient to eat healthy. 
    1. Stay hydrated! Did you know that dehydration can feel like hunger? When you feel the urge to snack, it could actually be your body telling you that it’s thirsty, not hungry. Try drinking a full glass of water before reaching for food. Feel free to add lemon or cucumber for flavor.
    1. Make sure you get appropriate amounts of sleep. Exhaustion, or even being more tired than normal, can impact what you crave. Adequate rest sets you up for success by ensuring that you’re energized, and you’ll be much more likely to reach for healthy foods (versus giving into a sugar craving, which often accompanies fatigue).
    1. Feel your feelings. Because emotional eating is driven by our feelings, we will have a much better handle on it if we address the underlying cause. No one wants to experience unpleasant emotions. However, it’s reassuring to remember that no feeling is harmful or permanent. Feelings come and go. Accept all feelings and sit with them – the good and the bad. The more we can sit with our feelings, acknowledge them, and label them, the less they will dictate our eating behaviors.
    1. Call your health coach! We all need support while working to break our emotional eating habits. Your EMP Health Coach is there to support and guide you through the process. Your coach will help you set realistic health-related goals that matter to you, and provide accountability as well as a safe space for you to explore the deeper issues that may be causing you to feel stuck. Leaning on your coach can make a huge difference in helping you change unwanted behaviors and patterns and achieve a sustainable, healthy lifestyle. *

Remember, be good to yourself. We all emotionally eat. Forgive yourself; it’s normal to experience setbacks. Breaking the pattern of emotional eating is a process. You didn’t create the habit overnight, and temptation is everywhere — you won’t change your habits in one day, and building resilience is like building muscle. Approach your efforts with compassion and nonjudgmental curiosity. When you identify a pattern, don’t force or shame yourself into changing. Simply take note and remember: small steps will lead to big shifts in behavior that last a lifetime.

*EMP180 Coaches are not licensed psychologists, psychiatrists, or therapists. Mental health – and taking care of it – is as important as physical health, and the two are intertwined. We encourage clients to seek professional help and resources if emotional eating behaviors become more extreme or difficult to control.

ABOUT EMP180°EMP180° offers personalized nutrition and weight loss programs designed to help individuals and entire families permanently change their health. Our highly trained nutrition coaches work with clients to help them transform their eating habits, achieve and maintain a target weight. We then provide life-long support, critical to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and optimal health long-term. For more information, please visit https://www.emp180.com/.

MightyMeals: Meals that are Mom & Kid Approved

MightyMeals: Meals that are Mom & Kid Approved

By: Christine Bean

Whether you’re a working mom, a stay-at-home mom, or somewhere in-between, we all share the same problem; there is never enough time in the day, and there are always hungry mouths to feed! I don’t know about your kids, but mine seem to be hungry 24/7, especially during quarantine. Truthfully, I love to cook, but between working part-time from home, attempting to keep two toddlers busy, and making sure the house doesn’t burn down, I am maxed-out most days and waving the white flag. MightyMeals to the rescue!

One thing I love most about MightyMeals is the ability to order bulk protein and sides via the A La Carte menu, which makes it easy for me to create quick and healthy meals on week nights.  One of our favorite, go-to combinations is Bistro Steak, Green Beans, and Sweet Potatoes. The kids love it, and all I have to do is heat and plate. (But, let’s be honest, I have to literally hold my husband back from devouring the entire container of juicy steak, first!) My toddlers also love the bulk Southwestern Egg Bites, which make for an easy weekday breakfast with a side of fruit. 

Being Italian, we eat A LOT of pasta. In fact, it’s both of my kids’ favorite food. So, I wasn’t surprised when they licked the container of Spaghetti and Meatballs clean and said it was “just like Nonna’s.” Little did they know, these turkey meatballs are totally healthy, packed with protein, and all I had to do was heat them up in the container. (Shh, don’t tell Nonna!) The Roast Beef Wrap is an exciting new option for us, anything handheld that we can take with us on a socially-distant picnic is a total win. I also love to bring along one of my favorite meals, Basil Pesto Chicken and Orzo, which is equally delicious eaten hot or cold. Oh, and did I mention that all of these dishes are delivered right to my door multiple times per week? You can’t beat that convenience. 

Knowing that my kids are eating fresh, nutrient-rich foods, and loving every bite, gives me peace of mind as a busy mom. The fact that they are chef-prepared, locally sourced, and delivered to my door is an added bonus! I’m truly thankful to MightyMeals for taking one less thing off my plate and making meals that are mom and kid approved!

MightyMeals Rolls Out New Menu Filter Feature

Here at MightyMeals, we are all about simplifying your life, and our new menu filter feature does just that. With our easy-to-navigate product filters, you are now able to narrow down exactly what types of meals you’re looking for, saving you time and making ordering a breeze.

Customers now have the ability to filter meals by product, or by macro, on the left hand side of our ordering page. When filtering by product, you can sort by “type,” choosing between meals, a la carte items, snacks, gift cards, or donations to the MightyMovement.

You also have the ability to filter by protein type; beef, chicken, fish/seafood, pork, turkey, or vegetarian.

For those adhering to a certain diet or meal plan, you can select a filter for meals that are under 500 calories, low carb <25, EMP180 Approved, or gluten free.  We also have a search bar available for keyword searches if you are looking for a meal that includes something specific.

Our much anticipated “Filter by Macro” option, allows you to use a sliding scale to select the max number of calories, grams of protein, carbs, and fat you are looking for in your dish. Our system will then show you exactly which meals fit your macro criteria. This is helpful for those sticking to a meal plan that promotes flexibility and discourages the elimination of entire food groups.  With over 100 meal, snack, and a la carte options to choose from, there is truly something for everyone on our menu!

Creating New Habits and Making Them Stick

The arrival of COVID-19 is causing us all to experience some disruption to daily life, and forcing us to adapt to new routines. Many people are taking this opportunity to focus on self-improvement and setting new goals—two of the most common being eating healthier and increasing physical activity.

People are finding that they finally have the time to experiment with healthier recipes or start that new workout video they had been wanting to try. However, when this pandemic is over and we return to our old routines, how do we turn these new activities into ones that will last long term?

Dr. Wendy Wood is an expert in the field of psychology for over 30 years. In the podcast, “Creatures of Habits – How Habits Shape Who We Are – And Who We Become”, Dr. Wood sheds light on the topic. She provides both personal experiences and her years of research exploring what makes humans develop habits, both good and bad.

Wood uses the metaphor of driving a car to explain how once developed, habits become automated behaviors that we don’t need to put much thought or effort into performing. Once the car is moving most experienced drivers cruise along pushing the petal.

She explains that one key to sustaining a behavior long term is finding a way to make the habit “frictionless”. Amazon is a perfect example of a company that makes buying merchandise essentially “frictionless”. With a click of a button, customers order merchandise and it is at their door oftentimes before they get home from work. It’s easy, rewarding, frictionless.

Making good habits frictionless can be the key to making them stick. For example, Wood recalls being crunched for time when her boys were young. To reduce the “friction” of getting up early and getting ready to exercise, she simply slept in her workout clothes. This made the morning routine easier, causing less friction.

There are also ways to make bad habits harder to maintain. For example, rather than putting a leftover birthday cake in a container on the kitchen counter, freezing single serve slices and keeping just one in the refrigerator causes more “friction” because it makes it harder to eat, and it is not in sight.

Habits that stick tend to provide an immediate reward. For this reason, goals that take longer to see results can deter people. Weight loss is a perfect example. The scale may not move as quickly as a person wants, so eating healthy and exercising may not seem rewarding enough for a person to want to repeat. Wood has advice for this as well. For example, she allows herself a “reward” during her exercise sessions. She watches her favorite cooking show at the same time she is on the elliptical. She doesn’t allow herself to watch the show at any other time.

The Hidden Brain is a weekly podcast. The attached episode, “Creatures of Habits – How Habits Shape Who We Are – And Who We Become”, is timely as well as practical for our clients. Resolutions are great, but habits are behavioral changes that last.

ABOUT EMP180°EMP180° offers personalized nutrition and weight loss programs designed to help individuals and entire families permanently change their health. Our highly trained nutrition coaches work with clients to help them transform their eating habits, achieve and maintain a target weight. We then provide life-long support, critical to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and optimal health long-term. For more information, please visit https://www.emp180.com/.

Mix and Match Meals with MightyMeals’ A La Carte Menu

These days I am all about simplifying my life. With MightyMeals’ A La Carte menu I can feed my entire family with their multi-serving menu items. It makes dinner time easy! 

Here are a few easy meals you can create using MightyMeals’ A La Carte menu: 

Meal #1: Grilled Chicken with Asparagus and Roasted Red Potatoes

Make this simple, fresh, easy meal utilizing MightyMeals’ A La Carte menu items. I recommend ordering at least 1lb of each (typically I order 2 lbs of chicken twice a week) item to use in multiple ways throughout the week. 

Roasted Red Potatoes: 1 lb of rosemary roasted redskin potatoes. (currently unavailable)
Ingredients: Red Potatoes, Olive Oil, Garlic, Parsley, Rosemary, Sage, Salt, Black Pepper.

Grilled Chicken: 1 Pound (lb) of Chicken Breast

Ingredients: Chicken, EVOO, House Seasoning

Asparagus: 1 Pound (lb) of Asparagus 

I typically portion out 3oz of Grilled Chicken, 2oz Red Potatoes and 1 cup of Asparagus onto a plate and heat in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes.

 

A second way you can utilize the grilled chicken, red potatoes and asparagus is to put them in a casserole dish with as little olive oil, chopped garlic and lemon and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Super simple way to change up the meal with very little effort and time! 

Meal #2: Bistro Steak with Orzo Salad and Green Beans

If you haven’t tried MightyMeals’ Bistro Steak you need to add one to your cart RIGHT NOW! It is AMAZING! It’s so good that I often grab a piece and eat it cold when I pass by the fridge. 🙂 For this quick meal I use the Green Beans to create a balanced meal that includes 3oz of Bistro Steak, 1 cup of Green Beans and 90 grams of Orzo Salad. These portions are what I typically eat and not necessarily for everyone. Basically put each item on a plate and eat! That’s how simple this is! 

Bistro Steak: 1 Pound (lb) of Bistro Steak
Ingredients: Beef, EVOO, House Seasoning

Orzo Salad: 1 Pound (lb) of Orzo Salad (currently not available) 

Ingredients: Orzo Pasta, Grape Tomatoes, Spinach, Red Onion, Balsamic Vinegar, Olive Oil, Garlic, Oregano, Parsley, Red Pepper Flakes, Salt, Black Pepper

Green Beans: 1 Pound (lb) of Green Beans

 

Meal #3: Shredded Buffalo Chicken with Red Potatoes and Green Beans

MightyMeals’ A La Carte menu makes the mix and match options endless! Grab your Red Potatoes and Green Beans and add the ridiculously delicious and popular Shredded Buffalo Chicken! Or if you are a fan of “Bowls” (think Chipotle or Cava) sub the Red Potatoes for either Jasmine Rice or Brown Rice as a base for your bowl, add in the Green Beans and Shredded Chicken. Or you can chop up the Green Beans and use them with the Shredded Buffalo Chicken to make an omelet! Go crazy and let your culinary imagination run wild! 

Shredded Buffalo Chicken: 1 lb of lean buffalo chicken breast slow cooked and pulled

Ingredients: Chicken Breast, Buffalo Sauce, House Poultry Seasoning

Roasted Red Potatoes: 1 lb of rosemary roasted redskin potatoes. (currently unavailable)
Ingredients: Red Potatoes, Olive Oil, Garlic, Parsley, Rosemary, Sage, Salt, Black Pepper.

Green Beans: 1 Pound (lb) of Green Beans

 

Need more inspiration? Check out a few of our A La Carte recipes on our blog!

Addie’s Maple Bacon Brussels & Sweet Potatoes

Olivia’s Steak Fajitas & Fiesta Green Bean Salad 

Check out all of MightyMeals’ family style, chef-prepared, healthy ready-to-eat options in one pound increments and add them to your order today: https://www.eatmightymeals.com/order/. Be sure to tag us on Instagram @eatmightymeals if you try out our A La Carte recipes! 

Turkey Taco Bowl

Tiffany’s Favorite MightyMeal: I love the Low Carb Bulgogi and the Turkey Taco Bowl!

About Tiffany Anzalone McCasland: Tiffany Anzalone McCasland is an award-winning strategic communications and marketing consultant. She is the founder of Angelle Media, a strategic communications consultancy with clients that include start-ups, nonprofits, government agencies, associations, real estate, and small businesses in the restaurant, health care and fitness industries. Her expertise includes a powerful mix of internal and external communications, digital strategy, content marketing, brand identity, website development, design and public relations. She has a Master’s in Mass Communications from Louisiana State University and a Bachelor of Arts from Boston College. She resides in Potomac, MD with her husband and son.

MightyMeals Teams Up With Real Food for Kids to Feed the Community

MightyMeals Teams Up With Real Food for Kids to Feed the Community 

MightyMeals Joins Chefs Feeding Families to Support Those Impacted by COVID-19 School Closures

 

Burke, Va. — When MightyMeals co-founders and Northern Virginia natives, Dan Graziano, Stefano Marzano and Alex Lebonitte found out that children were going without food in their own backyard, they knew they had to do something to help. On April 2, MightyMeals began delivering healthy, ready to eat meals to Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families, a joint initiative with Washington, D.C., metro-area restaurants to provide nourishing grab-and-go meals to families impacted by school closures and job losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The initiative was co-founded by Chef David Guas of Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery in Arlington, Virginia, and Real Food for Kids.

As the school closures continued due to COVID-19, MightyMeals was eager to join Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families to serve free, nutritious meals to needy children and families in the Washington, D.C., metro area. MightyMeals will continue to donate between 100 and 200 meals a week over the next two months to those most affected by the COVID-19 crisis to be distributed from Bayou Bakery on Thursdays and Fridays from 11am-1pm alongside offerings from Chef Guas. To date MightyMeals has donated more than 700 meals to the initiative. 

“The need for healthy meal options for low-income families has escalated given the recent school closings and job losses associated with COVID-19,” said Jenn Yates, Executive Director of Real Food for Kids. “We are grateful to Mighty Meals this generous donation, providing families peace of mind that they will have another delicious meal they can eat later in addition to the hot meals being distributed by Bayou Bakery.” Partnering with Real Food for Kids made the most sense for MightyMeals whose mission is to empower people to live healthier lives by being the leading provider of healthy, high-quality, locally sourced, chef-prepared meals that are delivered fresh to your door.

“This is a situation near and dear to our hearts, and we are grateful for the opportunity to give back to a community who has given so much to us,” said Dan Graziano, co-founder of MightyMeals. 

The free, healthy grab-and-go meals supplements the hot meals Chef Guas’ team provides to families five days a week. Each meal served through the Chefs Feeding Families initiative aligns with Real Food for Kids’ mission to increase access to healthy, whole foods for all children. These free, healthy meals are meant to complement the emergency meal distribution being implemented by local public school districts and other community-based organizations throughout the DC metro area. MightyMeals is following CDC recommendations for preparing food and heightened their already strict, certified food safety practices to ensure the health and safety of each family. 

If you would like to help MightyMeals keep feeding the community as long as possible visit www.eatmightymeals.com/mightymovement to donate to this effort. 

About Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families
Real Food for Kids: Chefs Feeding Families is a joint project with Washington, D.C., metro-area restaurants to provide nourishing grab-and-go meals to school children and their families impacted by closed schools to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Co-founded by Chef David Guas of Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery in Arlington, Va. and Real Food for Kids, Chefs Feeding Families provides funding for food, supplies, and restaurant staff to feed as many families as possible and create employment opportunities within the restaurant community also impacted by COVID-19 closures. Visit www.realfoodforkids.org/chefsfeedingfamilies to find the latest information about meal availability in your area and learn how to provide more meals for families in need.

About MightyMeals

Founded in 2015 by two fitness professionals and a classically trained chef, MightyMeals believes high-quality, healthy food should be accessible to everyone. The Burke, Virginia company provides a convenient, healthy meal delivery service made with locally sourced ingredients by chefs, offering a wide array of meals on a menu that changes weekly. MightyMeals has more than 50 pick-up locations across the D.C. metro area. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier lives by being the leading provider of healthy, high-quality, locally sourced, chef-prepared meals that are delivered to you. Take the guesswork out of your nutrition so you can spend your time doing the things you enjoy. Visit www.eatmightymeals.com and use code TRYUS to receive a free meal. Follow MightyMeals at @eatmightymeals for updates on new locations and tasting events.

For more information:

Tiffany Anzalone McCasland

[email protected] 

10 Tips for Working From Home

During these times of uncertainty, life can feel overwhelming and out of control. Here are a few ways to set boundaries and gain control when you’re feeling out of control because of having to modify our lifestyles, distance ourselves socially and stay home.

  1. Create a Daily Schedule – Maintain a healthy work/life balance. Just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean your workday needs to be longer than a typical day. Keep track of the time you spend working even at home. Just like you do at work, schedule your start time and end time. Create boundaries between work and home-life and stick to your routine.
  2. Schedule your meal and snack breaks – Set an alarm on your phone or watch and change your environment. Eating and working in different spaces will help keep the work/life balance lines from getting blurred.
  3. Schedule your workout -Make working out the first appointment of the day, you’ll feel more energized and motivated knowing that you’ve already gotten your exercise in for the day. You’ll also feel a sense of accomplishment. Here are some suggestions:
      • Morning walk- 20-30 minutes
      • 10 – minute stretch session
      • Body weight exercises (squats / lunges / planks / push-ups / sit-ups)
      • You Tube, Apps i.e. Peloton offers a lot of great virtual training
  4. Use your typical commute wisely – Do something active and/or restorative. Example: If it takes you 30 minutes to get to work, take a 30-minute walk or, take 30-minutes to meditate.
  5. Dress for success – Get out of your PJ’s and into NORMAL work clothes, even if it is a casual workday style. You’ll feel more productive plus you never know when your boss may want to video chat, be prepared.
  6. Designate a work location in your home – Pick a spot that is free from distractions i.e. a low traffic area.
      • Don’t work in your kitchen where you will be tempted to snack.
      • Don’t work in your bedroom. It is important to decompress and turn your brain off at least 1-2 hours prior to going to sleep. The bedroom should be a place of rest and relaxation.
  7. Get comfy, but not too comfy – Practice good posture; sit up straight in a chair that provides good back support. Avoid the recliner and your bed. If you have an exercise ball, that can be a fun option to use as a chair to help with posture and burn a few calories as a bonus!
  8. Stand up – If you are on a call and don’t need your desk, then walk and talk!
  9. Customize your work environment – do it your way! If you love rock-n-roll music, play it. If scented candles are your thing, light a candle.
  10. Spend time outdoors – Fresh air and sunshine will boost your mood and aid your immune system. Take a break from your computer screen and spend time in nature.  Here are a few of the benefits:
      • Strengthens immune system, good for digestion, and improves blood pressure and heart rate.
      • Fresh oxygen energizes and sharpens the mind.
      • Fresh air and sunshine help to regulate sleep/wake cycles.

ABOUT EMP180° – EMP180° offers personalized nutrition and weight loss programs designed to help individuals and entire families permanently change their health. Our highly trained nutrition coaches work with clients to help them transform their eating habits, achieve and maintain a target weight. We then provide life-long support, critical to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and optimal health long-term. For more information, please visit https://www.emp180.com/.

Build Muscle & Lose Body Fat with MightyMeals

Build Muscle & Lose Body Fat with MightyMeals

By: Virginia Kinkel

As a Personal Trainer and gym owner, I’ve spent countless years helping others transform their physique. For everyone, a positive change in your physique changes comes from two factors: either an increase in muscle mass, a decrease in fat mass or a combination of both. While it’s easy to determine what needs to change, it’s much more challenging to execute a plan. 

Fitness, what you’re doing for cardio and strength training, will inevitably have an impact, whether positive or negative, on your body composition. But that’s just a small piece of the puzzle. What most people struggle with is making consistent changes over an extended period of time in their nutrition. It’s easy to say “I need to eat healthier” but it’s much more challenging to know WHAT that looks like and HOW to make it happen. 

Enter MightyMeals. Not only does this meal prep company provide delicious, high quality food and amazing customer service, their A La Carte Menu options provide the perfect formula to set clients up for success. With the bulk items, from meat, to veggies, to carb options, all it takes is portioning out the food and heating it up. This is especially important during times like now when it’s so easy to fall in the routine of minimal exercise and poor eating habits. Below I’ve outlined two meal plans that rely solely on MightyMeals A La Carte Menu items (minus one thing) and can be executed for anyone. 

Below are outlines of two common clients we see at Bodymass including an estimated weight and typical body composition goals. While sometimes it’s actually easier to have a plan where all the meals are similar, that can become monotonous. To prevent boredom, the plans below include a variety of carb options, protein options and veggie options to allow the variety that most clients seek.  While there is some variety, MightyMeals offers so many other A La Carte Menu options there are almost endless pairing options.

Client A: Weighs 150 lbs and has a goal of decreasing body fat and maintaining lean (muscle) mass

MEAL 1

MEAL 2

MEAL 3

MEAL 4

MEAL 5

Total Calories: ~1450

(45% Protein, 35% Carb, 20% Fat)

Client B: Weighs 250 lbs and has a goal of losing weight overall (ideally fat mass, but it might be a little lean mass too)

MEAL 1

MEAL 2

MEAL 3

MEAL 4

MEAL 5

Total Calories: ~2200

(45% Protein, 35% Carb, 20% Fat)

If you’re looking for a more individual nutrition plan based on where you are currently, specific food preferences  and your goals, contact [email protected] for more information. And, as always, head over to MightyMeals to order your meal delivery!

About Virginia Kinkel
Virginia & her husband Kris opened the doors of Bodymass Gym in 2016 after realizing clients want more out of a gym. With a combined 25 years of experience and a base of science-driven programming, Bodymass offers DEXA scans, resting metabolic rate testing, nutrition coaching, in-house physical therapy and meal delivery options to help everyone achieve their goals.  Virginia is originally from Massachusetts, and began training while attending the University of Maryland where she earned her degree in Kinesiology. Her goal is to help people find healthy lifelong habits through Fitness & Nutrition. Virginia is a nationally ranked NPC Figure competitor, loves travelling, hiking, napping and spending time with Bodymass’ mascot, her dog Flex.

Grassfed Beef Lasagna

Virginia’s go-to MightyMeals menu item is definitely the Basil Pesto Chicken & Orzo… but my guilty pleasure is the Grassfed Beef Lasagna. I dream about those crispy edges… it’s SO good!

Connect with Bodymass Gym!
Follow Bodymass Gym on Facebook & Instagram for more information.

Keeping Your Immune System Strong

Keeping Your Immune System Strong

By: Inez Sobczak, BS. Nutritionist & CPT-NASM

“Food is medicine and exercise is the cure;” this sentiment is truer now, than ever. As a health and fitness coach, and owner of Fit-Nez, my focus has always been on helping my clients learn how to best fuel their bodies. During the Covid-19 crisis, I have put together an Immunity Guide in order to help each of us better navigate these uncertain times, while keeping our immune system strong. 

A poor diet combined with an intense exercise schedule, lack of sleep, and stress, can compromise your immune system. You are what you eat, so we need to make sure we are fueling our bodies with all the right nutrients, especially during this season of Coronavirus. Luckily, MightyMeals is here to help us stay on track. Now, it’s up to us to keep our bodies moving, hydrate, get enough sleep, and stay at home. We got this!

Download my Immunity Guide for wellness tips, recipes, workouts, and more. Check out the following Fit-Nez workout that you can do easily at home, to get your heart rate up and burn fat!

Fit-Nez 2020 Workout
Complete these 20 exercises for 20 reps each (2-3 rounds)

  1. Over and Under for lower abs 
  2. Squat Jumps
  3. Side Plank Oblique Rotation (20 each side) 
  4. Walkout + push up  (stand up) 
  5. Mountain Climber with  twist (20 on each side) 
  6. Full Body Crunch with 4lb medicine ball 
  7. Shoulder Taps
  8. Deadlifts (toes turned in) 
  9. Dips with Plate (25lbs)
  10. Pop jacks – thruster into a low squat, hands come up
  11.  Wall Sit -1 minute
  12. Superman
  13. Sprinter Sit-ups
  14.  Lunges
  15. Goblet squats
  16. Shoulder Press
  17. Renegade Rows
  18. Chest flies
  19. High knees for 20 seconds
  20.  Weighted Squat on Bosu
Pulled Beef BBQ

About Inez Sobczak

Inez Sobczak, founder and master trainer at Fit-Nez, has more than 15-years of experience as an innovator in health and fitness. Her approach to healthy living combines clean nutrition with a sensible approach to exercise that produces positive transformations for her clients. Inez stays focused on her Fit-Nez clients, helping them learn how to best fuel their bodies and their workdays.  She holds more than a dozen different health, fitness and nutrition certifications, is a national-level Figure competitor, OrangeTheory coach, marathon competitor and widely recognized expert in corporate wellness.

Inez’s Favorite MightyMeals Dish: The Pulled Beef BBQ

Connect with Fit-Nez: Follow Fit-Nez on Facebook, Instagram and visit www.fit-nez.com for more information.

MightyMeals’ Pickup Partners Provide Virtual Workouts

During the CoronaVirus crisis, we are here for our #MightyFam, and our amazing pickup partners are, too. Here’s a rundown of how our pickup locations are providing you with virtual workout classes, nutrition tips, and more, while you’re staying at home. 

Crossfit South Arlington
This CrossFit studio is offering three separate packages, virtual personal training through the Zoom video app, nutrition coaching with weekly in-app check-ins and progress meetings, and a tailored training program with up to five days of workouts per week and virtual one-on-one progress meetings. Join their Facebook group, or follow their Instagram and Facebook pages for more info. 

Verity Speed & Strength
This strength and conditioning gym in Dulles is posting home workouts for their clients via Facebook Live, and members can join their private Facebook group. For more information, follow them on Instagram and Facebook

CrossFit Lorton
To keep their community active at home, CF Lorton is providing their members with three workouts per day.  They have also loaned out equipment to each member, so that they would have what they need at home. Their athletes have been challenged to run as many miles as possible within the next thirty days, and the gym will donate $1 per every mile the winner runs to a local small business that is being affected by everything going on. Follow them on Instagram and Facebook for more. 

Old Glory Gym
To challenge their athletes to continue working-out, Old Glory will be posting virtual workouts to their social media pages, and members will be rewarded with gift cards to other small businesses. Follow along on Facebook and Instagram for more. 

The Conditioning Room
This Arlington gym is loaning out equipment to members, streaming “at-home” workouts, and will be hosting outdoor workouts when the weather allows. Check them out on Instagram and Facebook to stay updated. 

Ashburn CrossFit
They are open for business, but are capping their classes at nine to comply with CDC Guidelines, as well as following all other recommended guidelines. Follow along on their Instagram and Facebook pages for more. 

Bodymass Gym
This Arlington fitness center is offering free Instagram Live workouts every other day, as well as access to their online programming via email.  Members will receive emails with fitness and nutrition tips. Check out their Instagram and Facebook pages to stay updated. 

Prominent
This CrossFit gym is offering free, at-home workouts for members through Wodify, or non-members can pay $50 per month for access. The gym is open until further notice, but there are currently no drop-in’s offered at this time. For more information, follow them on Instagram and Facebook

CrossFit PR Star
They are providing their members with at-home workouts via Wodify, conducting virtual classes, hosting cooking shows, and providing feedback via text. They are challenging their members to eat #realfoodfirst, and to post photos of all their healthy meals using that hashtag. Take a look at their Instagram and Facebook pages for more. 

F45 Ashburn
This team training gym is offering free workouts each day via their Instagram account, or you can follow them on Facebook to stay up-to-date.

TITLE Boxing Club of Rockville
This boxing club is offering 30 days FREE on the TITLE Boxing Club on Demand app. Title trainers are also sharing workouts on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and via email to members. They are running a contest for members to tag them on Facebook or Instagram when they take a class on the app for a chance to win a free month and free personal training! 

We are proud to support our pickup locations, and are thankful to have you all as a part of our #MightyFam. Stay home, stay active, and stay healthy!

Vida Fitness
Even during times of uncertainty, it’s important to stay active. VIDA is working hard to bring you quality workouts that you can do from the comfort of your own home. Keep checking back for a variety of pilates, HIIT, strength, and cardio based workouts that you can do anywhere!  Access Vida’s home workouts here: https://vidafitness.com/homeworkouts 

SoldierFit Sterling
SoldierFit is doing daily LIVE at home style boot camp class workouts via their private online training group on Facebook. Additionally, they are holding nutrition webinars, health/fitness webinars, accountability groups and offering in-home or virtual personal training until all of this subsides. They are offering 7-day trials of the platform to ANYONE who wants to check them out OR would like their help to keep them healthy, active and engaged in a supportive community during this difficult time. All you gotta do is click the link and apply! Keep up with SoldierFit on their Facebook page

We are proud to support our pickup locations, and are thankful to have you all as a part of our #MightyFam. Stay home, stay active, and stay healthy!

MightyMeals CoronaVirus Update

MightyMeals CoronaVirus Update

MightyMeals Coronavirus Update 3/16/2020 

Important Information:
Home Delivery Only: Due to the Coronavirus and recommended social distancing, Pickup Locations are not available at this time. Please enter your address during the check-out process and ensure that we deliver to your home. 

A few things: 

  • Home Delivery is now reduced to $7.99
  • Home Delivery is FREE with orders of $130 or more 
  • Delivery is available in DC, Maryland and Virginia 

More Delivery Days: 

We are increasing our delivery days in order to ensure that we can feed our #MightyFam during this time of social distancing. We are now delivering (to homes only) on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. 

Contactless Deliveries: 

Due to social distancing, the driver will text you when they are on the way and will provide contactless delivery by leaving your order at the door. Our drivers are equipped with gloves and hand sanitizer and will use a new pair of gloves for each order. Please understand that for the safety of our drivers and for our customers that we will leave the orders at your doorstep unless otherwise instructed. 

 

Dear Mighty Fam,

At MightyMeals, we are in the business of providing you with the highest quality, healthy food and it’s our top priority today, and everyday, to maintain the highest level of cleanliness in our kitchen. As the ongoing news of the COVID-19/Coronavirus hits closer to home, we would like to share with you the precautions we are taking. Your health and safety is always our first priority.

From start to finish, everything at MightyMeals happens under one roof. We locally source all of our ingredients which never leaves our 37°F refrigerated prep room. All of our ingredients are cut, prepped, bagged, and packaged in the refrigerated prep room. This is something that makes us unique in comparison to our competitors; a lot of companies do not take the same safety precautions that we do at MightyMeals.

We are closely monitoring the advice and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). We want to take this opportunity to let you know of the policies and procedures we are putting in place surrounding COVID-19/Coronavirus. 

What We Are Doing:

  • Educating our employees on preventative measures provided by the CDC.
  • Increasing the frequency and extent of our cleaning practices, such as additional wipe downs of all hard surfaces. 
  • Providing additional resources that are available to employees including hand sanitizers, extra soap and paper towels in the restrooms. 
  • Implementing heightened sanitation and hand-washing procedures for all employees.
  • Discouraging all personal contact within our kitchen. 
  • All kitchen staff wear full-covered mouth pieces and head wear at all times, including gloves.
  • We adopted a no handshake policy

During this time MightyMeals is a great resource for you! We can provide you with healthy meals delivered straight to your home for free for orders of $130 or more. We provide contactless deliveries by leaving your order on your doorstep per your instructions. Our meals are fresh up to 6 days and can be frozen for up to 3 weeks. 

We will continue to work around the clock to ensure our teams are going above and beyond in keeping our kitchen safe. Thank you for your patience and trust in MightyMeals. Our goal is to ensure you remain confident in choosing MightyMeals as your meal prep company of choice. Please know that your health is a priority in everything that we do.

We are confident that our kitchen is safe and will continue to operate as normal. 

If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to contact us.

Thank you & stay healthy,
The MightyMeals Team 

Partner Spotlight: Heretic CrossFit

Partner Spotlight: Heretic CrossFit

By: Christine Bean

We recently chatted with Heretic CrossFit owner, Dr. Craig Stiritz, about their doctor-led program being the “cure for the common gym,” and how his athletes are adding MightyMeals to their routines while taking meal prep off their plates!  

How did Heretic CrossFit get its start? 

Dr. Stiritz: The gym has been around since 2013, but I took over in April 2017. Back in 2010, I was working as a chiropractor, and a friend introduced me to CrossFit.  I got hooked, and began doing it more and more. In 2013, the gym was split-up, and I followed the old owner over to the gym that we are at now. In 2014 my second daughter was born, and my wife and I decided that I’d stay home while she opened up her own practice.  The owner of the gym asked if I ever thought about coaching. I have a background in understanding the framework of the body, so he thought that coaching may be second nature to me. I received my Level 1 CrossFit certification in 2015, and coached for two or three years before the owner decided that he wanted to sell the gym and asked if we wanted to take it over.  My wife and I discussed it and agreed that it would be a seamless transition if I took over, since I was already a coach there. It ended up going smoothly and it’s been a success!

What makes Heretic CrossFit unique?

Dr. Stiritz: We really focus on the coach-client relationship.  We have professional coaches who do this as their profession, full-time.  All of our coaches have four or five years of experience,and they are professionals. Every client is assigned a specific coach who will be in your corner, acting as your advocate. Basically, you have a dedicated personal trainer without having to pay a personal training fee. The community has built a great retention tool, which is why group training fitness has been so successful.  When I began coaching, I realized there are so many things that go on in a CrossFit workout, everyone is at a different scale or level. I thought, if I could just have one hour of these athletes’ time, one-on-one after class, I could zone-in on what they need to improve on, and it could drastically improve their movement pattern. The coaches touch base with them after class to see if there are any concerns or questions. Clients can go back quarterly, bi-monthly, to train and get better at specific movement patterns.  We definitely are unique in the fact that we have a hybrid model of group classes and personal training. We are also the only doctor-led gym in the area. 

How did you get introduced to MightyMeals?

Dr. Stiritz: I was at a SuperFit competition at CrossFit Lorton, when their former owner introduced me to MightyMeals co-founder Dan Graziano. We had been using another meal prep company that closed their doors.  Dan and I spoke over email, and the rest is history! I have had several members who have been begging me for a meal prep service, so they are really excited for this partnership. 

How do you think MightyMeals will benefit your members?

Dr. Stiritz: MightyMeals will be monumental for giving those who need a dedicated food prep service what they need. Whether they are concerned with counting macros, having a set meal plan, something to make life easier for them, or just one less thing they have to worry about, MightyMeals will have that covered for our athletes.  Across the board, everyone is just trying to eat better, and this can be one less meal they have to worry about each day. Not to mention, a delicious and healthy meal! 

Pulled Beef BBQ

What is your favorite MightyMeal?

Dr. Stiritz: I’m a huge barbeque lover, so I would have to say the Pulled Beef BBQ.

About Dr. Craig Stiritz
Being an avid athlete his whole life, from karate to swimming to weightlifting, Dr. Stiritz has always had an interest in fitness and health. In high school, he achieved all-state status in the individual medley and breaststroke in swimming in the state of Florida.

He continued his love of fitness and health at the University of Florida where he focused on exercise physiology and exercise and sport sciences. This led him to study the underlying framework of the body, the spine, at Life University in Marietta, GA where he obtained his Doctorate of Chiropractic. He hopes to bring his past wealth of knowledge to Heretic CrossFit to help its members become better on their journey of fitness and developing a healthy lifestyle.

Connect with Heretic Crossfit
Follow Heretic on Facebook & Instagram to stay up-to-date!

Partner Spotlight: Inergy

Partner Spotlight: Inergy

By: Christine Bean

This week, we sat down with Kelly Young, owner of Inergy in Chantilly, VA, to hear about their unique combination of outdoor bootcamp classes supplemented with an indoor training studio, and how MightyMeals has been a huge convenience for their members, in more ways than one. 

How did Inergy get its start?

Kelly: Inergy actually started as “Kelly’s Bootcamp.”  I lost my father in January of 2008 and held a fundraiser bootcamp in his honor. The “Black Friday Bootcamp” was the first of my outdoor bootcamps, and it was a really positive experience. I loved the vibe of seeing all levels, all ages, working out outside and coming together for a cause.  I realized that it was truly my calling, and soon started an outdoor bootcamp on Saturday mornings. At that time, my entire life revolved around my kids, so this was something that I could do for myself. Everything happened very organically, and once people started telling me they wanted to workout more than just Saturdays, I began adding more classes. In 2017, I decided to open an indoor space to compliment the outdoor bootcamp. My clients really wanted to have more variety, more impact and less restrictions.  It has been a success, although my true dream has always been to teach fitness outside in a parking lot! The energy is amazing, and it’s opened the door to a different group of people who wouldn’t normally walk into a gym. We have really established ourselves in a unique way.

What makes Inergy unique?

Kelly: We have a small community feel, but we offer so much.  The introduction of Inergy was such a positive thing for our bootcamp members. I always tell people to start where they’re comfortable. For some people, that’s a barre or yoga class, something that isn’t super intimidating.  When they get more comfortable and want to explore more, we can still keep them within our community, and they can slowly try a new type of class. It’s a comfortable, and not intimidating, environment. People usually come in with one type of workout class in mind, and within a few months they end up doing ten different things!  Another unique factor is how much we truly care. Money, or the number of people who walk through the door, are not what drives me, it’s all about making a difference in people’s lives. The coaches I’ve hired have come from within our community. We all really want the best for each person there. It’s a very inviting, and positive place to be.  Our atmosphere is, “just show up and come as you are!” Some people really thrive in that type of environment, they can see themselves improving and get really excited about it.  

How did you get connected to MightyMeals?

Kelly: We had a food prep service we were using, but when they went out of business, I was definitely on the look-out for another one. MightyMeals co-owner Dan Graziano reached out, and coincidentally, a friend of his took a few classes at Inergy, so we formed a connection pretty quickly. I was impressed with how seamless the set-up process was! 

How does MightyMeals benefit your members?

Kelly: When I hear clients talk about their struggles and challenges, it all comes down to meal prep. Everyone wants to eat healthy food, they just don’t always have the time to prepare it. I am very into food and my personal nutrition, so I know that knowing the macros up-front and having everything listed-out makes life ten times easier for my clients. It’s just a fantastic convenience. There’s even an added motivation to go to the gym on MightyMeals pickup days. I’ve heard people say, “I really was not in the mood to workout today, but I need to get my MightyMeals!”  The menu variety is great, you can really mix it up and try new foods each week.

Mediterranean POWER Bowl

What’s your favorite MightyMeal?

Kelly: I really love the Mediterranean POWER Bowl!  I’m not a vegetarian, and I don’t eat a ton of carbs, but it’s so good! My son is a big fan of the Low Carb Bulgogi

About Kelly Young
Kelly has 25 years of experience teaching and training as a fitness professional. She is a certified Personal Trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine, and has her Masters in Public Health (MPH). Kelly has thoroughly enjoyed a rewarding career of helping people make incredible, lifelong transformations. She spent much of her career teaching group exercise classes in studios and gyms. She takes her role as a health and fitness professional very seriously, and believes that she has a gift when it comes to bringing out the best in her clients, helping them to see how powerful being healthy, and strong, can feel! 

Connect with Inergy
Follow Inergy on Facebook & Instagram to stay up-to-date!

7 Healthy Habits to Prevent the Flu

7 Healthy Habits to Prevent the Flu

By: Elaina Enjetti

The CDC reported that approximately 12 million people have contracted the flu and 12,000 deaths have occurred this flu season.  We all know that getting your flu shot is one precautionary measure you can take but that is still no guarantee. Washing your hands, disinfecting surfaces and covering your mouth when you cough are all good practices but what it really comes down to is how strong your immune system is from fighting off infections and viruses.  Did you know that our immune system is built in the gut? Yup! Your gut is responsible for numerous other things like sleep, mood, hormone function… It’s imperative that we give the body the most optimal environment to thrive. 

Here are some things to consider when trying to develop a bulletproof immune system:

  1. REDUCE STRESS: The grind never stops for us here in the District.  We’re constantly attached to our phones/laptops, swimming in deadlines and the mental stress creates inflammation in the body which then turns into a war zone for our gut.  Stress comes in all different forms including over exercising, dehydration, mental stress, emotional stress, anxiety, and lack of sleep. That’s where MightyMeals comes in! MightyMeals takes the guesswork out of your nutrition and gives you time back!  When I use MightyMeals for my meal prep, I save so many hours that I’m able to focus on other things on my to do list!
  2. SLEEP: Recovery is extremely important when it comes to combating mental/physical fatigue.  You should aim to get 7-9 hours of quality sleep. Melatonin, which is the hormone responsible for helping you fall asleep, is produced in the gut.  So, if you’re having a hard time with sleeping, you may want to evaluate your food choices.
  3. Caribbean Jerk Salmon

    EAT A HEALTHY DIET: Giving your body and digestive system quality dense foods is the best way to help your immune system.  Things like fruits and vegetables, good sources of fat that are high in Omega-3, and quality protein will help deliver the most optimal nutrients to fuel the bacteria that live in our gut.  MightyMeals has multiple salmon dishes on their menu that are high in Omega-3. Add the Caribbean Jerk Salmon, Salmon Cakes, Salmon Zoodle Puttanesca and the À La Carte Salmon to your next MightyMeals order! In fact, any of the 100+ menu items are great additions to your diet!

  4. EAT FERMENTED FOODS: Probiotics are super trendy these days.  BUYER BEWARE! Do your research on products that label probiotics.  Best thing to do is eat your probiotics! Kimchi, sauerkraut, kefir, yogurt, komubchas… These are better than the probiotics that’s in your sugar laden oatmeals.  Tip: MightyMeals’ dressings and dips are yogurt based!
  5. WATER: The nectar of life! With all that good food and fiber you are eating, you MUST make sure your body has enough water to digest and process.  The majority of us walk around like shriveled up prunes and don’t even know it. Rule of thumb is to get at least half your body weight in ounces and an additional 15-20 per hour of exercise.  Water is essential for all bodily functions and can affect all of the above so drink up! 
  6. Steamed Broccolini

    FIBER: This is plant food to our gut microbiome (microorganisms that live in your digestive system to protect and fight the nasty critters). Fiber is not only great for keeping you satiated, but it creates a stable environment for good bacteria to grow.  It helps control blood sugar and keeps your bathroom visits regular. 🙂 All of the veggies on the MightyMeals menu are high in fiber. The À La Carte Broccolini and any of the dishes with brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes are great for adding more fiber to your meal plan!

  7. LIMIT REFINED SUGAR: The sugar from your fruits/veggies are not the same as the sugar in your candy bar.  There is yeast that is present in your gut and the more sugar you feed it, the more bad bacteria can grow.  You must tame the beast by eating less sugar and more natural food! If you have sugar cravings, this could be a sign that you might have an imbalance of good to bad bacteria. 

Start incorporating these practices to help you stay healthy and strong.  What I like about MightyMeals is they combine all macro friendly options that hit each category (Carbs/Fiber, quality Protein, fresh veggies and healthy fats).  Make sure to switch it up to give your gut a healthy dose of different nutrients. Don’t forget to order from their À La Carte menu to fill in those gaps! 😊

About Elaina Enjetti:
Elaina Enjetti has been a Certified Personal Trainer and Wellness Coach in the Washington, DC area for the last 12 years.  She has dedicated herself to helping others find a more holistic approach to wellness through healthy lifestyle behaviors.  Her philosophy around health includes: stress management techniques, mindset therapy, and women’s hormone health with a focus on gut health.  She has helped many people find a practical and sustainable way to live and thrive in our busy world. Her vast experience working with many individuals with different ailments has gained her a reputation among her peers.  Follow her on Instagram to learn more about her work: @elainaenjetti.nutrition.

Elaina’s Favorite MightyMeals Dish: Seared Tuna

Seared Tuna

Partner Spotlight: Pulse Fitness

Partner Spotlight: Pulse Fitness

By: Christine Bean

This week, we caught up with Lisa Platnik, owner of Pulse Fitness in Bethesda, as she discussed their cutting-edge, “everything under one roof,” principle, and why MightyMeals has been the talk of the gym when it comes to quick, healthy, and delicious meals!

How did Pulse Fitness get its start?

Lisa: I opened up Pulse a little over seven years ago, having been in the gym and fitness world for over 25 years. When we opened, it was simply group exercise classes, personal training, and a Pilates studio.  We have grown to three Pilates studios, yoga, cycling, group exercise, a regular gym, and we offer personal training. We have been named “Best of Bethesda,” or a runner up for the past seven years in a row, and I was named one of the top personal trainers.  All of our trainers and instructors have knowledge of working with people of all skill levels. We can work with ages 15-90 with modifications. Our classes are kept small so you get that individual training.

What makes Pulse Fitness unique?

Lisa: We really treat everyone as if they are part of our family. We know everyone’s name; for example, if someone hasn’t been there in a while we call and make sure they’re ok. It’s a tight-knit and supportive community; everyone becomes fast friends and knows that the instructors truly care about people getting the best workout possible.  All of our trainers have over ten years of experience, with the Pilates instructors having over 20 years. There are no other Pilates studios in the D.C. area with the amount, and variety, of equipment that we have; we have four CoreAligns and three fully-equipped, cutting-edge Pilates studios. We also offer massage therapy and physical therapy. Everything is under one roof!

What connected you to MightyMeals?

Lisa: Someone from MightyMeals actually reached out to us, and coincidentally, I had been looking for a meal delivery system. I could tell right away that it was going to be a great match.  I really liked the bulk and ala carte options, and I love that you can change your order weekly. I’m all about variety, so it’s important to me that my members aren’t stuck having to choose from a limited menu each week. MightyMeals definitely has an awesome variety, there is something for everyone.

Seared Tuna

How does MightyMeals benefit your members?

Lisa: My members are always telling me that they want to eat clean, but they also are in need of convenience. Everyone is searching for ways to eat healthy without spending two hours cooking each night, so if someone can do that for us then we are all about that!  It is a daily conversation with people at the gym, “Where do you get your food? Have you found any healthy takeout places lately?” Being able to have MightyMeals as the answer to those questions has been life-changing for so many of our members.

What is your favorite MightyMeal?

Lisa: I love the Seared Tuna; I’m all about fish, veggies, and rice!

 

About Lisa Platnik
Founder, Lisa Platnik, is the heartbeat behind Pulse Fitness. Lisa believed in a gym where clients could find everything they needed on their fitness journey under one roof. Whether it’s Pilates, cycling, even on-site Physical Therapists; Lisa knows a person’s health and wellness depends on a strong support system. From the compassionate instructors to the cutting-edge apparatus, Lisa has built the foundation of Pulse Fitness on making a positive difference in your life. She has developed and directed group exercise and Pilates programs in the D.C. area for more than 26 years and was twice honored as “Best of the Best Personal Trainers” by Bethesda Magazine.

Connect with Pulse Fitness
Follow Pulse on Instagram and Facebook to stay up-to-date!

Partner Spotlight: TITLE Boxing Club

Partner Spotlight: TITLE Boxing Club

By: Christine Bean

This week, we sat down with John Sahakian, owner of TITLE Boxing Club in Rockville and North Bethesda, to learn about their unique, full-body workout, and how MightyMeals helps their members stay on-track when it comes to portion control.

How did TITLE Boxing Club get its start?

John: TITLE is a franchise that started in Kansas City in 2008 and now has over 160 locations in 22 states and three countries.  I worked in corporate America for 20 years, and I left my job not knowing what the heck I was going to do with my life. I began working with a franchise coach in order to look into which franchises would be the best to own. They narrowed down the list of which companies I should look into, and TITLE was one of them.  I flew out to Kansas City, met with the owners, and did the workout (and was extremely sore)! I was into fitness but had never tried boxing. It really made me appreciate what an intense workout it is. Boxing has been around forever, but people are just now realizing it is a great full body workout. So, I went for it; our Rockville location has been open for five years now, and we have a second location in North Bethesda. 

What makes TITLE unique?

John: I would say, definitely the workout itself. There’s something about using a 100lb bag in your workout that makes it different.  It’s truly a full body workout, not just upper body. People are always surprised when their legs are super sore the next day. It really works out your core too. It’s a huge calorie burner, and a huge stress reliever. You can hit that 100lb bag as much as you want, release a lot of endorphins, and feel like you are on top of the world. It’s really cool to know that you are learning an actual skill here. To hit a heavy bag requires a certain level of skill, and you feel like you are actually learning something. We really stress the word ‘club’ not ‘gym.’ Our sense of community here is a big part of who we are. There’s a really welcoming feeling when you walk in; our members feel like it’s their second home. We offer kickboxing and MMA, as well.

How did you get connected to MightyMeals?

John: I initially heard about MightyMeals through your Media and PR partner, Tiffany McCasland, who just happens to be married to one of my business partners, Chris. I then connected with MightyMeals co-founder Dan Graziano. We had a member appreciation day with vendors, etc. MightyMeals had a table set up, and it was a big hit. I’m always looking for ways that I can benefit my members so they can get more out of their membership here. It doesn’t hurt that the meals are fresh and delicious!

How does MightyMeals benefit your members?

Low Carb Bulgogi

John: A lot of my members are coming in specifically with a goal of losing weight.  Portion control is a big problem; these days everyone is so busy and there is practically no time to meal prep.  There are not always healthy choices around that are quick to prepare or eat. MightyMeals’ portion-controlled dishes not only help them lose weight, it saves them time and creates an opportunity for more work-life balance.  TITLE being a MightyMeals pick-up location adds more value to their membership, and it has been a seamless process for our employees to adapt to, as well.

What is your favorite MightyMeal?

John: I have several favorites, but if I had to choose one, I think it would be the Low Carb Bulgogi

 

 

 

About John Sahakian
John was born in Washington, D.C. and grew up in Potomac, Maryland. He went to Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda and attended
Wake Forest University in Winston Salem, North Carolina. He worked 20 years for a Fortune 500 company, locally as well as in Germany and St. Louis. John has always been into fitness. While looking into what he was going to do next in the chapter of his life, he stumbled across the TITLE Boxing Club. John’s biggest enjoyment has not only been bringing the results people want out of a fitness routine, but the culture and TITLE family that has come from opening his first location in Rockville.

Connect with TITLE Boxing Club
Connect with TITLE on Instagram and Facebook to stay up-to-date!

Macros 101

Macros 101

By: Chase McKesey, founder of TrophyBody Personal Training

Let’s talk “Counting Macros”. Like almost anything fitness related, a google search or water-cooler conversations with coworkers will lead you down a rabbit hole of conflicting and confusing information from unqualified sources. My goal is to clarify the what, the why, and the how behind counting macros as well as provide some actionable methods you can apply immediately; as in, 10 minutes from now.

Why Count Macros?:

Counting Macros is the preferred “dieting” method for my clients for a few reasons. First, it considers that not all calories are equal; something that simply counting calories does not. In other words, it takes into consideration that eating 1,000 calories worth of chocolate is not going to yield the same results as eating 1,000 calories of MightyMeals. Next, the variety and adaptability within counting macros makes it sustainable. Any and all foods are available to you with this “dieting” method and adjustments can easily be made when changes come in your health, life, and goals. Most importantly, counting macros will teach you the contents of different foods. Learning this will teach you to intuitively balance your diet and enable you to live a life free of tracking, logging, and weighing food. Understanding what you’re eating rather than simply eating what a diet tells you to is the key to a good relationship with food. Last but not least,  counting macros just flat out works. Below is an example of my client, Justin, who applied the simple steps and concepts I am going to outline in this blog.

Justin B. 12 Weeks Results from Counting Macro with the method in this blog

 

What are “Macros”?:

Macros, short for Macronutrients, are the nutrients that make up the calories in our foods. When their values are combined, they make up the 100% of the calories in food. These nutrients are Fats, Carbohydrates and Protein.

What is Counting Macros?:

Counting macros takes the process of counting total calories one step further by counting how many calories each specific macronutrient is responsible for. For example; counting calories would be setting a goal of consuming no more than 1,000 calories. Counting macros takes the additional step of setting a goal for how many of those 1,000 calories comes from fat, protein, and carbohydrates respectively.

Set up YOUR Macros:

Here’s the only tricky part: setting your specific parameters for the percentage of your calories you want each macronutrient to be responsible for. Let’s, again, say your goal was to eat 1,000 total calories; how do you determine what percentage of those calories come from proteins? From fats? From carbohydrates? The answer is not concrete. 

The uniqueness of each person’s body and their goals dictate what macronutrient split will work best. You must first make an educated guess; assess; then adjust. I have helped hundreds of clients do just that and enjoy great results by establishing a baseline with the steps below. Take 10 minutes and get yourself going:

    • Calculate your Caloric Goal by multiplying Your Body Weight (lbs) by the Multiplier below that corresponds to your goal:

*For Example: If John weighed 100 lbs. and his primary goal was Muscle Gain, he would Multiply 100 x 15 = 1500. John’s caloric goal would be 1500 calories per day.

        1. Make an Account
        2. Select “More” (Bottom Right) > “Goals” > “Calorie, Carbs, Protein, and Fat Goals”
        3. Enter the Caloric Goal from step 1. Then enter the percentage of Carbs, Fats, and Protein from below:

*Continuing with the same example from step 1, John would enter 20% for Fats, 40% for Carbs, and 40% for Protein because his goal is Muscle Gain.

*Notice when entering the percentage, it also gives you a total in grams for each macronutrient.

Tracking YOUR Macros:

        1. Select the blue “+” Sign > “Food” > Click your meal of choice
        2. Search for your desired food or scan barcode on label
        3. Adjust serving size
        4. Tap the checkmark on the top right
  • Check Your Progress:
        1. Select the “Diary” tab (Bottom Left)
        2. Scroll to bottom and select “Nutrition” (Top Left)
        3. Select “Macros” (Top Right) OR “Nutrients” (Top Middle)
        4. View how close you are to hitting your Macro & Calorie Goals
        5. Aim to be within +/- 2% of your macro goals each day

Life-Saving Tips:

Here are some tips I strongly suggest based on my experience with hundreds of clients. 

Make your life easy.

  1. Track AHEAD of time, NOT in real time – Set aside some time to enter in your food ahead of time. Create a grocery list or make choices off menus ahead of time, make sure they fit your macro and calorie goals, then simply eat all of the food you have planned for. Trying to track as you go and seeing what will and won’t fit will become extremely tedious, inaccurate, and will lead to Frankenstein meals where you end up with a quarter banana, an ounce of broccoli, 6 peanuts, and hummus just to fit your macros.
  2. Eat MightyMealsBefore you think this is a shameless plug, consider two things. First, MightyMeals tend to be very macro-friendly and the website has menu filters that will assist the process of fitting the meals to your goals. Second, all of the MightyMeals are already in MYFITNESSPAL app; simply search for them.
  3. Meals First, Snacks SecondStart by entering the meals you want to eat into the app. Meals are not as adjustable as snacks and we also want to enjoy the foods we are taking time to prep and sit down to eat. Once the meals are entered, see where the holes are in terms of meeting your macros goals. Then, cater your snacks to fill those holes. For example, if you were short on fats after entering your meals, add in a fatty snack like almonds to fill the gap.
  4. Be PatientThis isn’t Amazon. Goals aren’t delivered in two days.

This should be plenty to get started! So, Just. Get. Started.

About Chase McKesey: Chase McKesey, founder of TrophyBody Personal Training, grew up in Springfield, Virginia where his youth revolved around year-round sports. At the end of his athletic career, Chase severely missed the competition, comradery, as well as the physical and mental challenges that sport had provided him for so long. Fitness soon filled this void. The lessons learned on the field and the court translated into his workouts and eventually into his coaching. Like sports, everything in the gym was earned; never given. Chase believed strength, long-lasting health, and longevity can only be achieved through consistent effort and perseverance; much like a trophy at the end of championship season. On this principle, TrophyBody Personal Training was born. Chase was determined to coach and empower those willing to put in the work by putting them in the best possible position to succeed.

Since its inception in 2016, TrophyBody has helped 1,000’s of people earn a relationship with their health that they can wear proudly. TrophyBody has established itself as a community leader in its hometown of Washington D.C. as Chase has taken on health-based initiatives to include Mayor Muriel Bowser’s #FITDC campaign and being named Head Strength Coach for the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders. TrophyBody Online, the newest evolution of TrophyBody, is due early Spring 2020.

Chase’s Favorite MightyMeals Dish: Ropa Vieja

Ropa Vieja