FitM.U.M – A day on my plate (limiting processed carbohydrates)

After feeling very average for a few weeks (due to increased ‘winter’ carb consumption) and experiencing bloating, cramping, feeling sick and decreased energy levels, I decided to try and go without processed carbohydrates, mainly bread, pasta, crackers, porridge and things I was eating too much. I found myself in a downhill carb spiral and the more I was eating the more I would crave it. These foods weren’t filling me for long either so I was eating a lot more in a day and because I am busy I started opting for quick, easy options like toast, crackers, even crumpets!!! I knew I needed a break to detox my body and hopefully loose the bloated feeling and the cravings. I also knew this was probably going to be hard! Today was day 4 and I have actually surprised myself at how well I am doing and more so how good I am feeling. What a difference. I am beginning to plan my snacks and meals better again and ensure that I have healthy options on hand so I’m not tempted by quick fixes. For me, it is all about being organised and prepared. If I don’t feel like it is an effort, I am much more likely to succeed once I’ve put my mind to something. Here is how my day on a plate looked today.

For breakfast I had eggs, with avocado and cherry tomatoes. I have had this twice this week (once with the addition of mushrooms too) and it fills me for longer than high carb breakfasts which I like as I am busy in the mornings and hate feeling hungry straight after I eat. I had one cup of Green Tea with lemon with this. I always start my day with Green Tea. eggs breakfast Friday’s are one of my busiest days for Personal Training and business so I ate my morning snack in between clients. It was a mix of raw almonds, cashews and cranberries. I knew I would be out a lot so I made sure I packed my container with me to snack on. I also drank 1L of water before 11am.

Lunch today was a bit out of the ordinary for me as I needed to fit in my long run (14km) so I had a smoothie. I usually have smoothies as a snack or breakfast rather than lunch but it worked well today and filled me up as well as being a great post run drink. smoothie lunch Dinner tonight was my delicious dairy free low carb Vegetable Frittata. I had a productive day yesterday and made this yummy Frittata, the eggs make it high in protein. fritatta dinner I had quite a bit of interest yesterday’s post on my FitM.U.M Facebook Page about the Frittata so I promised to share the recipe. Now, I actually didn’t follow a recipe, I just knew what vegetables I wanted in it and that I need dairy free so I made it myself and it worked very well and tasted delicious, if I do say so myself. Obviously, you can choose your preferred vegetables and you can also add cheese etc to it to make it to your liking.

FitM.U.M’s Dairy Free Vegetable Frittata

Ingredients

1 medium sweet potato (cubed)

1 red onion (diced)

1 medium zucchini (diced)

8 cherry tomatoes (cut in halves)

100g baby spinach

100g premium lean leg ham, chopped (alternatively you could use bacon or omit all together for vegetarian option)

6 mushrooms (thinly sliced)

8 eggs

1/4 cup oat milk (use any milk you like)

1 TBSP minced garlic

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 185 degrees.

2. Whisk eggs and oat milk with a pinch of sea salt

3. Heat Pan or skillet and add garlic, sweet potato, mushrooms, onion and zucchini with a pinch of paprika and ground pepper. Cook for 5 minutes until vegetables soften. fritatta prep 4. Add whisked eggs and stir through

5. Add baby spinach, ham and cherry tomatoes and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for only a minute until spinach wilts slightly.
6. Pour into baking dish and bake in oven for approx. 30-40 minutes or until eggs are set and it is brown on top. fritatta raw 7. Remove from oven once it is cooked and let cool in baking dish and slice when cool fritatta slicefritatta cookedI have drank 2.5L of water today which helps curb cravings. I also made a little ‘clean’ sweet treat to enjoy tonight as I have been very good this week and not indulged, so I thought being a Friday night, why not!!! It is just banana and strawberries with my mix of peanut butter/cacao chocolate. Extremely Yummy and I am literally enjoying them now with a cup of Peppermint tea. treat treat 1 I hope this has provided a little insight into my low processed carb detox that I have been doing this week. I can honestly say I am not bloated or sick after I eat and I felt great on my 14km run today! This is not a long term elimination, I am planning to slowly introduce carbohydrates (such as rye bread, mountain bread, porridge) I will just limit them and only eat them in small quantities.

For those who are interested, I will keep you updated how I go! Follow me on Facebook and Instagram to see my workouts, food and recipes and our busy but active life as a family of 4 in Adelaide!

Enjoy xx

FitM.U.M Product Review – 2XU Elite Compression Tights

I was stoked when the second product I received from the amazing RunStopShop (www.runstopshop.com.au) was a pair of 2XU Elite Compression Tights. As I have gotten into my running in the last year and I am training for my first half marathon in August, I knew I wanted a pair of compression tights for my winter running. I’m a bit of a wuss when it comes to the cold weather so I was more than happy to give these babies a whirl…. anything to help me not give up my running training through the cold winter months.

2xu compression

Just like my Polar Loop Activity Tracker, I started using the 2XU tights straight away. I went for a 10km run the day after I received them and I’ve got to say they felt great, kept me warm (but not ridiculously overheated… just right!) and they really made a big difference to recovery and how my muscles felt after the run.

Features:

  • PWX FLEX fabric delivers optimum power and flexibility to protect abductor, glute, quad, calf and hamstring muscles
  • Drawstring waistband for an adjustable, secure fit
  • Flatlock seams to reduce chaffing for greater comfort
  • Powerful Invista LYCRA® for exceptional fit, support and recovery
  • High filament yarns for dryness – wicks sweat from the skin to the fabric exterior
  • Antibacterial and UPF50+ sun protection
  • Internal key pocket
2XU Women's Elite Compression Tights Source: www.runstopshop.com.au

2XU Women’s Elite Compression Tights
Source: http://www.runstopshop.com.au

I must admit I thought they might be quite restrictive or too tight to run in as I usually only run in 3/4 active wear tights or shorts but they are probably the most comfortable pair of tights I own and I wear them all the time. The foot hole is small and they are tight (obvioulsy… that’s the whole point) to put on but it doesn’t take too long at all to get them on like I’ve heard others can. They are extremely supportive and hold you in, in all the right places. The reflective strips are great for early morning or evening running especially now that the nights are much darker, much earlier.

2xu

So, I am a mega 2XU compression convert and will be purchasing a second pair very soon. If you are in the market for a pair of running/workout compression tights then I strongly recommend you do yourself and your legs a big favour and try these. They look great and feel amazing. My muscles are thanking me and I am not pulling up sore after longer distance runs!! BONUS.

Enjoy xx

 

Delicious Fudgy Bliss Balls

I love a good bliss ball and it’s even better when it is this simple to make (no blender/food processor required!!).

We always have these ingredients in the house at any given time and I love that when I feel like something yummy or need a snack, I can whip these up in 5 minutes (plus time to set). They don’t last long in our house because they are so yummy so you could double the ingredients below to make a bigger batch.

fudgy bliss balls tea

Ingredients

1/4 Cup honey (or I often do half honey and half rice malt syrup – still 1/4 cup in total though)

3/4 cup of Natural Crunchy Peanut Butter

1 tsp Natural Vanilla Extract

1 (heaped) TBSP Raw Cacao Powder

1 cup desiccated coconut

1 TBSP chia seeds

Pinch of Salt (I use pink Himalayan Rock Salt)

Method

Add honey, peanut butter and vanilla to mixing bowl and combine.

Stir in cacao until all the powder has been mixed through.

Add desiccated coconut, chia seeds and salt and combine well.

Use your hands to form small balls and place on plate or baking tray.

fudgy bliss balls

You can either set them in the fridge or freezer. I usually place them in the freezer as we always seem to want to eat them quickly! Once set, transfer to air tight container and store in fridge or freezer, depending on how firm you like them. I keep them in the freezer!

Try not to eat them all at once and let me know if you enjoy them. I told you they were easy and delicious.

fudgy bliss balls bite

Enjoy xx

IRONDAD… The fitness fanatic balancing act!

Jason or IronDAD (as he is affectionately known on my page), is my amazing Partner and is incredibly dedicated to his fitness and triathlon training (as well as his family). He is currently 25 days out from competing in his third full Ironman Triathlon in Cairns on 14th June 2015. Jason also works in the Fitness Industry and is completing his Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise Physiology). He is often asked how he fits it all in. I thought it would be good to hear from him on FitM.U.M about how to find the right balance and fit in everything that is important to YOU.  He will offer a different perspective and to show that no matter how busy you are you can definitely have fitness goals and ambitions and work bloody hard to achieve them.  

Melbourne Ironman 2014

Melbourne Ironman 2014

I AM AN IRONMAN DAD:

                -FAMILY WITH 2 KIDS (8yr old & 10 month old)

                -WORK 38+ HOURS PER WEEK and STUDY (UNI) PART TIME

                -TRAIN 10-18 HOURS PER WEEK

Glenelg Olympic Distance Triathlon 2015

Glenelg Olympic Distance Triathlon 2015

IRONMAN Training is very demanding not only physically and mentally but also on family and work life. I recently became a Dad again and nothing has changed drastically. I am busier, I am trying to find the time but I have a goal and am very focused on hitting the goal, QUALIFY FOR KONA (the epitome of Ironman/Triathlon – to Race in Hawaii)!!!. My number one motivator though, is my Family. Kel is the most supporting wife anyone could ask for, I know she would prefer me home most of the time but she is also committed to my goal and that means a lot to me and also means I am accountable to another person. She always manages to add some questions and encouragement after a session; Have you done enough? What about the Run? Did you give it your all? You need to go faster!…

Finding the right balance is tough, but you need to really sit down and plan out a normal day and be honest with yourself. Everyone can fit in 30 minutes a day somewhere, and it is all about making the most of the time you have and prioritising. When people say Ironman, we mean a 3.8km swim followed by a 180km ride and finishing with a 42.2km run (YES, THIS IS A MARATHON). People think you’re crazy, you need to train 20-30 hours a week to complete it. If I was a pro and this was how I made my living then yes. But I’m not Pro, I don’t train anywhere near that. My training will vary between 10-18 hours a week depending where I am at with my training plan and what I am focussing on. I have lots of friends that train for an ironman on 10-12 hours max a week and complete it in under 13 hours. The key is to have a PURPOSE to each session. If you have 30 minutes for a bike trainer or rpm session you make sure that you are hitting Heart Rate targets, maximum effort, or if it is for recovery each session has a purpose for doing it. If there is no purpose it is a waste of time. It is all about being effective and efficient!

 Tracking workouts gives you very important information, hours trained, speeds, distance covered, Heart rates and writing down exactly what you did each session. This allows you to see how you are going week to week and to see improvements in times/distances/heart rates. This is something that I not only do for myself but also for other people to help them get the most out of their training for their personal/specific goals. Please get in contact with us if this is something you are interested in or would like further information on. You will get the best results from having a clear and specific goal, training plan and recording information. 

 KEY THINGS TO INCLUDE IN YOUR TRAINING ARE:

          HAVING A PURPOSE/GOAL (Long Term Goal, Short Term Goal & Session Goal

          TRACKING & PLANNING

          MAKING IT A PART OF YOUR LIFE

          REMEMBER YOU HAVE 168 HOURS IN A WEEK, DECIDE HOW YOU WANT TO SPEND ALL THOSE HOURS

Get out there and TRAIN!

FitM.U.M & IronDAD xx

Untitled design

FitM.U.M Product Review – Polar Loop Activity Tracker

I was lucky enough to be contacted a few weeks ago by the Marketing Coordinator of RunStopShop, a fantastic online fitness store (http://www.runstopshop.com.au/) to be a brand advocate for them and try a few of the awesome products that they stock.

runstopshop logo

This blog post is one of two posts to review the first two products I received. As well as ooohhing and ahhhing over the many, many fitness products, I also spent some time finding out more about the company and I love that their purpose is simple: to provide the products which enable you to get the most out of your active lifestyle, and enable you to reach your goals faster. This is something I’m all for…. as a busy mum of 2, who is not only on my own fitness journey, but who also motivates and trains many mums who are all embarking on regaining their health, fitness and active lifestyle! The timing could not have been more perfect, I was literally in the market for a fitness activity tracker and was researching different brands so when I saw the Polar Loop 24/7 Activity Tracker I knew I had to have it. It looks great, is extremely easy to set up and is very comfy to wear.

Polar Loop from RunStopShop

Polar Loop from RunStopShop

It’s features include:

  • Heart rate (when you are wearing the Polar H7)
  • Calorie expenditure
  • Total steps
  • Time of day
  • Activity Benefit gives feedback about your day, week, month
  • Waterproof

I love that it is simple to use and displays all the important information at the touch of a button but also has a smartphone app and website syncing which provides an accurate insight into your everyday activity and movement & sleep habits. I am definitely someone who is driven by having goals and targets to reach so, in the week that I have been wearing it, I have been so motivated to reach my daily fitness activity goal of 14,000 steps. Another feature I really like is that it tells you how much more activity you need to do to reach your goal (eg. jog for 30 mins or walk for 1hr 15). So far, I have achieved my goal each day.

As a mum of a 10 month old baby, who isn’t the best sleeper, I am up A LOT during the night to breastfeed her, so even though I am aware I am getting a very interrupted nights sleep, it has been good to see how much restful sleep I am getting at night. It accurately shows the times I get up and I find it quite amusing to see the tracking of me walking to her room (blue activity lines) and then sitting in the chair feeding her (grey activity lines) and then walking back to my room again and going back to sleep….. hey, at least I’m getting extra steps in my day. There are 24 usable hours in every day…. it’s no wonder I’m reaching my target.

Polar Loop App - Activity Breakdown

Polar Loop App – Activity Breakdown

So, although I have only been wearing my Polar Loop Activity Tracker for 1 week, I am hooked! I only take it off to charge it and I am much more aware of my movement and activity patterns and I am making sure I am staying active throughout the day. If you are looking for extra motivation to help you on your fitness journey and want to track your daily fitness, activity and sleep then I highly recommend using an activity tracker and, personally, I am loving my Polar Loop. I think it is on sale at the moment and you can shop this awesome product here.

Enjoy xx

Blueberry, Chia & Banana Pancakes – The Healthy Chef

This healthy, yummy recipe is from The Healthy Chef (I love her recipes) and I am definitely going to give these a whirl in the school holidays. They not only look like a fantastic breakfast, but also a great kids snack (please note there is a nut free version too). You can also add protein to these if you wish. They will make a delicious family brekkie!

Photo Source: The Healthy Chef

Photo Source: The Healthy Chef

Blueberry, Chia & Banana Pancakes

Makes 6 pancakes

Ingredients

100 g (1 cup) ground almonds ( see notes on nut free and high protein option )
1 tablespoon chia seed – or ground flaxseed
1/2 teaspoon gluten free baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
250 g  – 2 ripe bananas, smashed
2 free range eggs
125 g blueberries to serve

Directions

Combine smashed banana and eggs.
Add almond meal, linseed, baking powder and cinnamon.
Fold in blueberries if using.
Rest for 5 minutes.
Heat a pan over a low heat and add a little coconut, macadamia  or olive oil.
Spoon pancake batter into rounds onto the pan and flatten slightly with the back of your spoon.
Cook over a very low heat. Take your time and don’t rush.
Flip over and finish cooking.
Serve and enjoy with natural or coconut yoghurt.

Recipe Source: www.thehealthychef.com

Energy Bars and Banana Oatmeal Cookie Recipes

I’ve been looking for tried and tested recipes for a good energy bar for awhile now and I couldn’t go past Lorna Jane’s Nourish Cookbook for the out-the-door energy bars! I have adapted the recipe to suit our family as we like dried fruit in our snacks aswell as nuts. So please be aware that this is not taken directly from the cookbook. If you prefer it without dried fruit, just omit it. I usually play around with recipes and add extra things we like.

Energy Bars

Makes a yummy afternoon tea full of protein and energy

Makes a yummy afternoon tea full of protein and energy

Ingredients

1 cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

1 cup almond kernals

1 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup desiccated coconut

1/2 cup organic coconut oil

1/2 cup raw honey

2 free range eggs

1/2 cup peanut butter

1/3 cup cacao nibs

2 tsp cinnamon

1/3 cup goji berries

2 TBSP chia seeds

1/3 cup pecans

1/3 cup diced dried apricots

1/3 cup dried cranberries

*optional* 1/2 cup protein powder

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees fan forced. Grease and line a square cake tin.

2. Process all ingredients (except goji berries, apricots and cranberries) in food processor until combined but still coarse. Then stir through goji berries, apricots and cranberries.

3. Press mixture firmly into tin, sprinkle with extra toppings of your choice (I used desiccated coconut and cacao nibs) and press down again.

4. Bake for about 30 – 45 minutes or until browned lightly (you may need to cover with aluminium foil if it is becoming too dark on top). Cool in pan before cutting into bars.

I store in fridge in an air tight container so the bar stays firm and hold together.

Straight out of the oven before slicing

Straight out of the oven before slicing

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Recipe by The Healthy Chef

banana oatmeal cookies

Ingredients

1 large ripe banana (mashed)

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 cups rolled oats

1/2 cup desiccated coconut

2 TBSP ground LSA

1/2 cup raisins or cranberries (I used cranberries)

1/4 cup honey or natural maple syrup

1/4 cup coconut oil

(My extra additions were 1/3 cup cacao nibs and 1/3 cup diced dried apricots)

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees (fan forced).

2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix together well with your hands, squeezing mixture together until it starts to bind.

3. Form into approx. 12 cookies (depending on desired size).

4. Flatten slightly then sprinkle with extra rolled oats or coconut.

5. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden. Cool and enjoy!

Store in an air tight container.

Hopefully you enjoy these recipes and they might be something you can add to your range of snack options! I am constantly looking for new snacks we can enjoy during the week.

xx

Did someone say raw Peanut Butter Cups?! Yes, Please!!

If you like peanut butter, you will love these beauties! A raw version of the good old Peanut Butter Cups…. YUM! The best part is they are super simple to make and they don’t really require too many ingredients.

We all know I love a dairy free sweet treat. This one has fast become one of our new favourites. Again, I stress that they are still a treat so you wouldn’t want to be eating them for breakfast, lunch and dinner…. but enjoy one as a little indulgence every now and then (when you’ve worked hard for it haha).

Ingredients

Raw Peanut Butter Cups

peanut butter cups frozen

6 heaped TBSP of natural organic peanut butter

15 pitted dates (soaked in hot water) or 5-6 moist medjool dates

1 tsp natural vanilla extract

pinch of salt (I use pink Himalayan rock salt)

‘Chocolate’ Tops

3 – 5 heaped TBSP coconut oil (melted). Depends how thick you want your choc layer on top

1 TBSP raw cacao powder (you can use slightly more or less depending on how bitter you like your chocolate flavour)

1 TBSP rice malt syrup (could substitute honey, maple syrup or other sweetener)

pinch of salt

Directions

Soak dates in hot water for approx 20 mins

Once dates are soft, place peanut butter, dates, vanilla and salt into food processor and blend until well combined.

Press mixture firmly into muffin or mini muffin tray (depending on desired size).

peanut butter cups

Combine the ‘chocolate top’ ingredients together in a bowl and spoon evenly on top of peanut butter cups.

Cacao Choc topping

Cacao Choc topping

peanut butter cups choc tops

Place in freezer to set. We like them firm so we leave them for approx. 2-3 hours.

peanut butter cup tray

This makes approx. 6 standard size muffin cups.

Once they are set, take them out of muffin tin and store in airtight container or zip lock bag in freezer!

peanut butter cups frozen

Enjoy – they are a little piece of delicious-ness!

Your reason or your excuse… which is greater?

It happens to all of us, sometimes we just don’t want to exercise. Whatever the reason, it doesn’t matter, there will be a day where you just do not want to get out there and get it done, plain and simple! But it’s funny (almost ironical) because those are usually the days that if you can overcome that feeling and switch to ‘mechanical’ you mode and do it anyway, you will probably enjoy it more, get good results and feel a whole lot better afterwards.

This is something I have been working hard on in the last 6 months. Yesterday I went for my run, it was my seventh day in a row and my legs were heavy, I had quite a bit going on, living on about 5 hours of sleep and quite honestly, it would have been very easy for me not to go. But I knew that wasn’t really what I wanted and that I would actually be disappointed if I didn’t do it. I set myself a realistic goal and off I went. I went through the paces and surprisingly I felt good and actually went 4 km’s further than I set out to go! The distance wasn’t huge and it wasn’t my fastest run but the whole way I felt proud of myself. It’s these workouts that actually make you a stronger person. I kept repeating things to myself like “I’m one run stronger than I was yesterday”, “I’m closer to my half marathon goal”, “my legs are strong and my breathing feels good so keep pushing!”, “make your family proud but more importantly make yourself proud”, “do it because you can, and for the people that physically can’t”….. there are lots more mantras I use to get me through. I use my running time as my thinking time, my planning time, my reflection time, my alone time. I always surprise myself at what I am capable of and what I can achieve. It’s my mental strength that has surprised me the most above and beyond my physical strength and capabilities! If you can overcome the mental barriers and negative talk etc you are well on your way to achieving whatever you put your mind to!

The reason I put my shoes on and went outside yesterday and did it was because my ‘want’ to get it done was far greater than my ‘excuses’ not to! This is not a post about #noexcuses…. do you know why, because at times we all have real reasons why we can’t train and that is totally OK. We are mums, and we have sh!t going on, I’m no different, but we deserve to do something for ourselves and we deserve to spend time on our own health, fitness and sanity! For me that’s keeping fit, healthy and active and sticking to my training plan for my half marathon this year!

stronger than your excuses

I know I am much happier when I do fit my exercise in and I find it also means I tend to eat better too. If I skip a day or a session, for some reason it carries over into the rest of my day/lifestyle and I seem to not eat as well and I am grumpy (hence the reason my family are so supportive of my training ha!).

I’ve said it before in my posts and anyone who knows me will tell you, I am no elite sportsperson. I am a mum who has decided that this is my year to be the best I can be! I am constantly striving to be a better me, stronger me, fitter me, healthier me, happier me….These are my reasons for getting it done every single day! .This is my motivation.Every run or workout I do brings me a little bit closer to all of that, especially the ones where I bloody well didn’t want to do it!! What are your reasons and motivation? It’s so much easier when you have a clear and defined purpose for doing what you do (and that’s in all areas of life, not just exercise!).

The saying is “Motivation is what gets you started, habit is what keeps you going” but I actually think motivation is what gets you started and your purpose and reason is what keeps you going… no matter what. If I give up on my reason, I am giving up on myself and I am not going to let that happen. I’m sure we can all come up with at least 10 legitimate excuses why we just can’t be bothered exercising today, but how much will we let them get in the way and actually stop us from doing it anyway and getting closer to reaching our goals?

This post was in my head while running yesterday and it didn’t quite come out as well written down as it sounded in my head (I really need to start recording myself while running as things seems much clearer when I’m not at a computer) but I am sure it will resonate with someone else and hopefully it will motivate even just one person to not give up on your own goal just because you might have an excuse or two. You are not alone, I was there yesterday!! It’s all part of the journey.

FitM.U.M xxx

Hi Ho, Hi Ho… it’s back to School we go! Simple Snack Recipes & Ideas

Back to school, always comes with mixed emotions in this house. It is exciting that our girl is growing up and enjoying her school years but it is sad that holidays are over, sleep ins must come to an end and we can’t just hang out at home or do whatever we feel like each day! Alas, we are embracing it and getting ourselves prepared for the big year 2 world that awaits us on Tuesday!

We have had a bit of a school lunchbox cook up to ensure that we start the year off prepared, organised and healthy.

Here are a couple of the things we have made for Term 1.

Simple Spelt Pancakes

This recipe is not my own, it is one I have been using for ages and I honestly don’t know where it came from so can’t give proper credit

Ingredients

2 cups Whole spelt flour

1 Tbsp baking powder

3/4 tsp salt (I use pink Himalayan rock salt)

1 3/4 cups milk (I use oat milk – you can use any milk you like)

2 Tbsp butter (I use Nuttelex for dairy free version), melted

2 tsps Natural vanilla extract

*2 Tbsp sugar (optional, I use a drizzle of honey – you could use any sweetener you prefer)

Directions

1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the spelt flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

2. Combine the milk, melted butter and vanilla

3. Form a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients into the dry. Stir the batter just until the dry ingredients are thoroughly moistened (it will seem quite wet but will thicken as it sits). Let the batter sit for 15 minutes before you use it.

4. Heat a non stick pan. Spoon the batter onto the hot surface, make them as big or small as you like. I do them fairly small for lunchbox snacks.

5. Let the pancakes cook on first side until bubbles form (about 2-3 minutes), when they are just beginning to set, flip them and finish cooking on other side (about 2 minutes) until they are golden brown on both sides.

Banana Bread (I made it into muffins for lunchbox snacks but you could do bread slices)

This recipe is from The Healthy Chef and it is yummy

300g smashed ripe Banana (I actually use 1 large banana)

3 free range or organic eggs

2 Tbsp raw honey or organic maple syrup

1 tsp natural vanilla extract

1/4 cup oil (I use coconut oil)

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp baking soda + 1 Tbsp lemon juice

2 cups almond meal (if you’re school doesn’t allow almond meal you could use any flour you prefer, I have used whole spelt flour)

1/4 cup ground flaxseed (linseed) or chia seeds

Directions

Pre-heat oven to 160 Degrees Celsius.

Combine smashed banana, honey, oil, cinnamon, vanilla, eggs, baking soda and lemon in a large bowl.

Add the almond meal or flour and flaxseed/chia and mix well.

Lightly oil one loaf tin (or muffin pan if making muffins) and coat with extra almond meal or desiccated coconut to stop sticking.

Spoon the batter into the tin and bake for 45 mins – 1 hour (a skewer inserted into the centre should come out dry). I usually cover the top with foil for about 30 mins of the baking time and then uncover for the last part to let it brown up without over-browning.

Remove from oven and allow to cool before turning out the loaf.

* I also usually add 1/2 cup blueberries to the batter and lightly fold through before pouring in loaf tin. You could use any berries.

A few of our other lunchbox favourites that we have stocked up on are:

Tucker’s Natural Tiny Dippers

We love the Australian, family owned business, Tucker’s Natural and we love even more that their healthy eating criteria are:

  • No preservatives
  • No artificial ingredients
  • No artificial flavourings
  • No genetically modified ingredients
  • Yeast, soy and MSG free
  • No trans fats
  • Suitable for vegetarians
  • We keep the fibre content as high as we can and we use a mix of natural complex soluble and insoluble fibre
  • We keep the salt, sugar and saturated fat content as low as we possibly can
  • We keep the calorie content as low as we can without sacrificing flavour, texture and a great eating experience

The Tiny Dippers are perfect for the lunchbox, with just enough crackers and dip for a good healthy snack. They are also great for an on the run after school or sports snack.

Tuckers

These products are available to purchase online and at selected Coles and Woolworths.

Lily also loves it when I cook a corn cob and cut it into thirds and put it in her lunchbox along with carrot sticks.

Dried fruit (such as diced apricots, cranberries, sultanas) is also a winner as well as fresh berries (blueberries, strawberries and raspberries).

We also cut a wrap or mountain bread into quarters for her to snack on.

I don’t normally buy bars or fruit sticks but we found these ones (below) at Coles so thought we would try them. So far the verdict is good and they seem fairly healthy for store bought bars, so they might be a good snack to add in once or twice a week.

lunchbox bars

3-fruit-sticks-pear-apple-acai

These are just a few ideas and things we do for snacks. Lily’s main lunch always consists of a sandwich or sometimes leftovers from the night before (cut up cold meat, pasta, veggie slice etc). There are some fantastic ideas for healthy lunchboxes on Pinterest. I like the look of this one….

Source: Pinterest

Source: Pinterest

Happy back to school prep, FitMummies! xx