I help frustrated women over 40 lose weight, gain strength, & lean out so they can feel confident, consistently motivated, and beautiful in her own skin.
Jenn Labonte is a full-time Marketing Director, certified Personal Trainer, certified Group Fitness Instructor, certified Boot Camp Instructor and Peloton enthusiast. She lives in Ormond Beach with her husband and son, Jacob, age 15 (daughter Lexi, age 19, is attending Kennesaw State). For more fitness and health tips, exercise plans, uplifting accountability and healthy living motivation, follow @JENNLABFIT on Instagram and Facebook.
This blog post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx. All opinions are mine.
When it comes to my daily eating habits, I require two things…it has to be EASY and it has to be BALANCED! I always search for a healthier option that I can create quickly. Today I’m sharing some of my newest finds and I can personally attest to the fact that these are all DELISH!
Who else loves soy sauce? Me too! But that high sodium always leaves me feeling bloated! Coconut Secret offers 72% less sodium than traditional soy sauce, providing the perfect 1:1 soy sauce replacement! It tastes amazing with a savory, slightly sweet umami flavor. Bonus points for being soy-free, gluten-free and MSG-free!
Coconut Secret offers a delicious Asian-inspired taste to your veggies, stir-fries, marinades and more! Learn more about the product by visiting their product page here.
Mighty Sesame Tahini is a creamy, ready to use tahini with just ONE ingredient! Tahini is made with roasted hulled organic sesame seeds. It’s 100% natural, smooth and drizzle-worthy for all your recipes. I love creating a creamy hummus or using on a salad or sandwich as a dressing. You can even add it to your smoothies for extra protein!
Mighty Sesame is packed with nutrition! It’s rich in Calcium, Iron, Vitamin B6, Folic Acid, Omega 3, Omega 6 and so much more!
I am all about convenience and their unique squeeze bottle is the bomb! No more spooning from a jar, just shake, squeeze and enjoy!
Check out their full line of Tahini products here.
I would venture we all have heard of Minute Rice! They have been around since the 40’s providing wholesome, quick and easy rice products. But, these new rice cups have taken things next level!
Ready in just 60 seconds, with no water needed, it doesn’t get any easier! They make an excellent choice for easy, on-the-go breakfasts, lunches, snacks or dinner. Just add some protein and your done in seconds!
Minute Basmati microwaveable rice cups are nutty, aromatic and great to eat alone or as a base for a tasty meal.
Minute Brown Rice and Quinoa microwaveable rice cups combine the crunchiness of red quinoa with the chewy texture of brown rice. Each serving contains 55g or whole grains so you meet your recommended goal in just one meal!
What I LOVE about Nutiva Hazelnut Spread is they offer a creamy organic product with 40% less sugar than the leading brand! Yes, you read that right!! Better yet, they are vegan, non-GMO and offer the great taste that everyone in the family will enjoy!
I love to use on my toast, pancakes, waffles, fruit or sometimes straight from the jar!
You will definitely want to give this one a try! You can learn more about Nutiva here.
RECIPE 33 Infused Almonds
If you’ve ever tried flavored almonds you know the messy seasoning gets all over your hands! RECIPE 33 set out to find a better way and infused almonds were born!
RECIPE 33 takes real ingredients and infuses flavor into each almond without adding any artificial additives or flavors. With flavors like Black Truffle, Lemon Rosemary, Smoky Serrano, Garlic Dill and my favorite, Cinnamon Vanilla, you are sure to find one you love!
These mess free flavored almonds are great for on the go snacks or even added to a salad or a charcuterie board.
Save $2.00 on any 4oz bag by using code: TryRECIPE33 here.
RESET RESOLUTION! Most of us (including me) have set a goal or challenge for ourselves this year. Whether it’s wellness, nutrition, self-empowerment, organization or self-care related…big or small…I’m cheering you on!
Today I’m teaming up with some awesome brands to help you on your resolution journey!
Shaklee Life Shake Soy Protein – French Vanilla Protein Powder
Let me lead with the fact that Shaklee was founded by Dr. Shaklee, who invented the very first multivitamin in the U.S. more than 100 years ago! Talk about pioneering!
The Life Shake Soy Protein is packed with 20 grams of protein, 6 grams of fiber and 24 essential vitamins and minerals. Plus it’s Non-GMO, vegan and comes in indulgent flavors that you will absolutely crave! The best tasting plant-based protein powder!
Just blend or shake two scoops of the Life Shake vegan protein powder into your favorite dairy or dairy substitute drink and blend! I love adding strawberries and blueberries but, the possibilities are endless.
You can’t beat the convenience and taste for a complete, healthy and protein-packed meal!
Shaklee Collagen is the most complete collagen product, including ALL 9 essential amino acids required by the body to support protein synthesis. With 10 grams of collagen and a powerful combination of biotin and Vitamin C, you will see a healthy promotion in your skin, hair, nails and joints!
Shaklee Collagen is unflavored so you can mix it with your favorite shake (like your Shaklee Life Shake), smoothie or even in your morning coffee!
I am fanatical about my to-do lists and staying organized. As much as I love the latest apps and content management systems for staying organized, I can’t escape my love for old-school, pen to paper lists. And of course I have to have all the best quick dry ink pens and colors!
Zebra Pen Corporation offers a full line of writing and creative products, like ballpoint pens, gel pens, rollerball pens, mechanical pencils, highlighters and more!
The Zebra Pen Journaling Set includes both Sarasa Clip Gel Retractable Pens AND Mildliner Highlighters in fun colors.
The wide variety of colors offered in the Zebra Pen Journaling Set are perfect for color coordinating all my notes and I LOVE that each gel pen has a corresponding mild color highlighter pen! That’s perfection for my color-coded, organizational obsession!
The Mildliner Highlighters have a chisel tip and fine point which are perfect for hand lettering and marketing applications. The mild, water-resistant ink is translucent so it won’t bleed through the paper!
Use code RESOLUTION15 to save 15% on the Mildliner Highlighter, Mildliner Brush and Sarasa Clip from www.zebrapen.com
Did you know that they’ve been shown to be great for your heart, blood pressure and brain? Their health benefits simply can’t be “beet!” 😊
The versatile beet is packed with vitamins and minerals associated with lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, increased stamina, detoxification support, boosting immunity, and much more.
And the best part is there is no need for a blender! Beetology does the juicing for you! They offer five different flavors and all their 100% organic cold pressed juice blends are under 110 calories per bottle.
Here’s two of my favorites:
Beetology Beet and Cherry
This deliciously balanced blend of ripe tart cherries, bold beets and naturally sweet apples is irresistible! With only three ingredients, 100 calories, no preservatives, additives, artificial color or flavors, Beetology is like no other beet blend. Plus, it’s all natural, not from concentrate, GMO free and includes all organic ingredients.
Beetology Beet and Veggie
Need an extra dosage of veggies? The Beetology Beet and Veggie blend is a powerful veggie punch, layered in fresh carrot juice, kale and celery. It offers the mildly sweet flavor of natural beets with the added sweetness of green apples.
Drinking your veggies never tasted so good!
Beetology Beet and Veggie blend includes only five ingredients, 90 calories, no preservatives, additives, artificial colors or flavors. And just like the Beet and Cherry blend, it’s all natural, not from concentrate, GMO free and includes all organic ingredients.
Self-care is a crucial part of our physical and mental health! While I admittedly am not the best at pampering myself, I do make a conscience effort to take care of my skin! I workout outside a lot and my skin tends to take a beating.
I love all the Tree Hut products because they never skimp on good ingredients! I know I will get soft, smooth skin every time I use their products.
Tree Hut’s Vitamin C Whipped Body Butter is the perfect skin-refresher to get that glowing skin! Plus the scent of Vitamin C leaves my skin feeling soft, hydrated and smelling amazing.
Vitamin C is a powerhouse antioxidant and is known to help boost skin for a brighter, firmer and even-tone appearance.
I also love that all their Whipped Body Butters are paraben free, vegan, sulfate free, alcohol free and contain no formaldehyde donors.
With the new year I often hear resolutions that include limiting or removing alcohol from your routine. Some of you are trying to lose weight or work on fitness goals. Good choice, as alcohol is one of the number one deterrents from reaching those goals! Or maybe you’re just celebrating Dry January!
But, like it or not, there is often the peer pressure when you go out with friends or family. They all mean well but, after hearing “just have one” or “why aren’t you drinking?” multiple times a night, it gets old!
If this is you…I have a fun brand to suggest to you! Introducing Monday, alcohol free gin! Spirits lovers on a mission to shake-up the modern drinking experience! Here’s the kicker: amazing taste, zero alcohol and all-inclusive. So you can enjoy flavorful cocktails, socialize without stress, and wake-up feeling fresh.
Monday Zero Alcohol Gin is a bold, aromatic blend of juniper, natural botanicals, citrus, and spices that satisfies like a classic London Dry style spirit that even finishes with the familiar kick of your fav adult beverage.
Aside from being alcohol free, it’s also 0 calories, 0 carbs, 0 sugar, vegan, gluten free, paleo and keto friendly and the big-8 allergen free.
For best results, make a delicious cocktail or mixed drink with fresh ingredients.
Monday looks, feels, and tastes the part, no one will know. Plus, because it’s alcohol free, you won’t regret last night’s good times the morning after!
Shop Monday Gin by visiting: drinkmonday.co AND use the code JENN15 to save 15% off anything on the Monday site (except subscriptions). One use per customer only. Expires Jan.31, 2022
Cheering you on in your journey, no matter what your goals are this year! Now, go an crush them all!
Fall Favorites with a Twist! Enjoy the flavors of fall without adding unnecessary amounts of sugar, calories and fat.
I’ve put together three recipes that offer healthier versions of seasonal yumminess we all love.
Share them with friends and family (or keep all to yourself). I promise, no one will complain about the swaps!
Swapping is a great way to tailor recipes to your own needs…whether you need to eliminate/substitute certain ingredients because of allergies, counting your macros or just trying to create a healthier version!
These three recipes will introduce you to some great ways to sub out items! Check out the lasagna, for example: We swap zucchini for noodles, and turkey for beef! That cuts down on carbs and fat, alike.
Just click HERE and download the recipes now! Let me know how you like them!
Let’s all start each day with a grateful heart – and mindful about what we’re preparing and enjoying.
Meal prep – or preparing meals in advance – is one of the best ways to eat right every day, while also saving time and money. You make meals ahead of time all at once, then put them in servings for serving or freezing.
It reduces the hassle of cooking at every mealtime, and it cuts down on binge eating or grabbing whatever is most convenient when you’re hungry, rather than eating what’s in your plan.
But to start it might seem like a big time commitment, right? A whole hour in the kitchen? Well, I think you’ll find it’s a great investment. Here’s how to manage the time.
Choose a day or two each week where you can devote the time and focus. Most people pick Sundays because they’re not working. Some can get it all done at once. Others might want to break it up with, say, a Wednesday. But remember: You don’t have to meal prep for an entire week; it’s up to you!
Start simple, with just one entrée recipe. Slow cookers are useful. It’s so easy to make chili or soup in a crock pot and then have it to enjoy all week, along with a big salad you can prepare in advance (and dress when you serve).
Gather recipes and make a shopping list. That way, you’ll be sure to have everything you need in advance.
Make sure your supplies include storage containers you can put in the microwave and freezer, and materials like tin foil and plastic wrap.
Make big batches of staples like rice, quinoa and oatmeal. You can use them throughout the week to mix things up.
Start with lunches and dinners. At home, a healthy breakfast can be quick and easy. But if you’re going to work every day, you don’t want to rely on food courts and cafeteria food. And, after a long day, it’s grand to come home to dinner that’s already done and waiting for you.
Stock the freezer with meats and veggies, the pantry with nonperishable staples, and your spice drawer with your favorites.
You’ll find it’s really kind of amazing how much time you’ll save each day during the week. And that hour you spent in the kitchen? Totally worth it!
This post has been compensated by Sunbeam. All opinions are mine alone.
After 40, like it or not, pain has become part of who I am. I’ve had to recreate and reinvent a lot of the things I used to do. I let it hold me back for several years. Although I no longer let it win, I still know it’s in charge. I’ve learned to play along and listen when it yells. Rest, recover and rethink relief!
Sunbeam is the proud sponsor of U.S. Pain Foundation’s 2021 Pain Awareness Month Initiative. In honor of their support of this initiative as well as what they do for my relief nearly every single day, there is no better time than now to share how I personally treat my shoulder pain.
I spend a lot of time in my home gym both training clients virtually and squeezing in my own workouts. I always follow any workout with a series of stretching and mobility exercises like the ones in the video. Incorporating these with GoHeat™ USB Powered Heating Pad keeps me active and pain free. And the portable, USB powered capability is perfect so I can use it while I’m working or even in between clients.
The U.S. Pain Foundations is a nonprofit organization with a mission to empower, educate, connect and advocate for individuals living with daily pain. While there is rarely a single solution to pain or a one-size-fits-all approach, it’s important to keep working towards finding a solution that works for you.
Just because you’re strong enough to handle the pain…doesn’t mean you deserve it. #loveyourselffirst
The biggest obstacle I hear from the people I coach is that they “just don’t have time.” People are SO busy today with work, families, managing a house, and the million other things that come up.
So it’s too often that they find themselves grabbing food for convenience – food that not only doesn’t serve their bodies but that also ends up negatively impacting the family and their waistlines. This leads to further guilt and a vicious cycle begins.
It breaks my heart to see these smart, hard-working, and deserving people go down the rabbit hole of convenience because they just don’t know another way. So, I’m here to help!
Check out my strategies for healthy, fast, and convenient dinners (or whichever meal you choose!):
You make it:
1. Pre-cook proteins, pre-wash and chop veggies. You can do this 1-2 times a week depending on time. I’m a fan of the Sunday Ritual, where you prep and portion for the entire week. How to do this: Simply grill or bake enough protein to sustain dinner each week. You can prep the veggies to be prepared on the spot in the evening before dinner or in advance like the protein. Heck, throw it all on the grill!
2. Purchase pre-chopped veggies. If to the first point you were thinking…”Yeah, but the part I HATE is washing and chopping!” Pretty much every grocery store sells vegetables that are ready to throw in a pan, in the oven, or on a grill. It’ll typically cost you a little bit more, but it’s worth it if this is what it takes to make the right choice.
3. The 10 minute, minimal effort meal. This is one of my favorite strategies! It’s as simple as this: Rotisserie chicken, steam in a bag veggies, and wrapped microwavable sweet potato. Serve the chicken, grab 1-2 cups of veggies for your plate out of the bag (season if you like), and eat half the potato with a pat of grassfed butter. And you’ve got leftovers!
4. Crock Pot meals. It doesn’t get much easier than throwing a bunch of ingredients in a crock pot in the morning then coming home to a fully prepared meal (and a house that smells awesome). Also requires minimal clean up! This is definitely easy to make in large portions, so you’ve got leftovers!
Still not quite going to work? Here are my GRAB AND GO strategies!
5. Hit the hot bar. Have a grocery store like Whole Foods nearby? Chances are they have an awesome hot bar!
6. Healthy take-out. This is easier to find than you think. I love Asian restaurants for this because you can almost always find grilled protein and order it with a side of vegetables. You’ll typically be able to get a few servings out of it too, so you’ve got lunch for the next day!
Believe me, I am all about convenience when it comes to food, so I always suggest making more than you need so you’ve got left overs!
And when, I cook, I keep it SUPER SIMPLE! Check out one of my go-to’s with this Beef Stir Fry:
1lb ground beef 1 medium onion 1 large bell pepper (any color) 1 tbsp coconut oil salt & pepper to taste
Heat a sauté pan to medium high. Add coconut oil and let it melt. Add the onion and let it start to turn translucent. Add the bell peppers. Let cook for 2-3 minutes. Add ground beef and cook to desired temperature. Add salt and pepper to taste.
I usually throw this in a bowl and eat it as is. This makes about 3-4 servings for me. You can also serve this with about a half cup of quinoa! How is easy is that!? Under 15 minutes!
Give it a try and let me know how you like it!
P.S. If you are struggling with finding foods for weight loss and need support, strategy and mindset to help you put it all together then I invite you to schedule a personal, 30-minute discovery call with me and let’s make change happen!
Working from home most days is awesome! However, keeping my mind focused with all the distractions can definitely be challenging! Not to brag or anything but, I can forget what I’m doing what I’m doing while I’m doing it!
I know a lot of you are with me in working from home, so here are my top 5 tips to keeping my mind and memory sharp:
Take breaks. Breaking up your day between tasks allows your mind to rest, change gears and become even sharper than before.
2. Discover your peak hours. If you have the ability to pick your hours, figure out what times are your most productive and schedule the crucial discussions or work in those moments.
3. Support healthy cognitive function with “Mind your Memory” from Natural Wellbeing. These veg caps help maintain healthy memory function, protect brain health and promote mental clarity and focus. I’ve shared a few of their products with you but, this is one of my favorites.
4. Walk. Research shows a walk can reset your brain and re-energize it to be stronger throughout the day. It also helps prevent physical fatigue, particularly if you spend 8 hours or more sitting at the job. It doesn’t have to be outside, either: A walk around your office environment can help jog your mind, too.
5. Practice Mindfulness. Research shows those that practice mindful meditation see improvement in concentration, focus and stay on task longer. This can mean learning how to meditate, but it can also be as simple as trying a quick and easy breathing exercise.
Do you work from home? Try these tips this week and let me know how it helps!
P.S. Visit Natural Wellbeing HERE and use code JENNLABFIT15 to save 15% on all products.
Starchy carbs get so much attention when it comes to nutrition conversations because they are the biggest double-edged sword our bodies have to deal with. On one hand, all of our energy in the body comes from glucose molecules (carbs in their basic sugar form) but on the other, our bodies weren’t designed to be surrounded by so many readily available carbs.
So when our body does get an onslaught of starchy carbs (usually from refined sugars in all of our indulgence foods or simple carbs found in anything baked with flour), it handles them by releasing insulin. Insulin is responsible for a lot of important functions in the body, but by design, it is a storage hormone. So instead of signaling our body to burn fat, our bodies actually get the signal to store fat whenever we eat a lot of starchy carbs.
This is why you can expect to make the biggest dent in your weight loss if you begin to control starchy carbs with every meal.
Where are Carbs Found?
Carbs are found in a lot of different foods but in general you can view them in this distinction:
FIBROUS VS. STARCHY
Fibrous Carb Rich Foods that Help with Fat Loss:
Raw or lightly cooked vegetables
Beans and legumes
Some fruits (mostly berries)
Starchy Carbs that Work Against Fat Loss:
All candies, jelly and jams
Sodas, fruit juices, fruit drinks
Pudding, custards and other sweets
Processed refined grains like flour or white rice
Bread and pasta made with any refined flour
Cakes, cookies and other sweet bakery products
What Do We Mean by “Controlling” Starchy Carbs?
First, notice that the emphasis is not on eliminating carbs but rather on controlling them. Our brains tend to be resistant to restriction, so we want to add the right foods to crowd out the foods that aren’t serving our interests.
In addition, “controlling” carbs also acknowledges that it’s not realistic to avoid all of the foods in the “Against Fat Loss” carb lists. We all like to indulge, so it’s important to learn how to enjoy those foods without affecting your waist line.
In this context you, can think of carb control as substitutional. The goal is to substitute as many of the “against fat loss” carbs with “help with fat loss” carbs.
So in order to achieve the above, you will be required to practice one (or both) of these strategies throughout your day to control carbs:
Substitute the carbs not working for you with more quality carbs
Fill more of your plate with protein or crowd it out with more veggies (as they are technically a carb as well)
Shift from more processed foods to less processed foods
Shift from breads and white rice to Ezekiel bread and brown rice
Swap pastas for quinoa
Potatoes to sweet potatoes (or any root vegetable)
2. Eat your “Against Fat Loss” carbs after a workout
The intense workouts I design are designed to drain your muscles of as much sugar as possible. Thus, right after a workout, your body is keener on storing any incoming sugars (i.e. carbs) into your muscles instead of into fat. Thus, if you still wish to indulge in pastas, pizzas, breads, sweets etc. feel free to do so ONLY after your workouts. You can even think of it as a way of “earning your indulgence carbs.” This should not be done daily, however. But a few times per week is ok. 🙂
And don’t forget your portions!
The above portion is for women. Just double it for men!
I hope this gives you a better understanding of what carbs truly are and how they work in the body!
Have questions? Email me at email@example.com or message me at JennLabFit on Instgram or Facebook, and ask away!
This post has been compensated by Sunbeam. All opinions are mine alone.
We have all heard the phrase “no pain, no gain” in one form or another. And yes, some pain and soreness is great for the body and expected as muscles continuously break down, rebuild and grow stronger. But too much pain may be your body’s indicator that something is terribly wrong.
As we welcome the beautiful summer months, travel and family vacations we begin to put this phrase to the test. With the stresses of packing, long, cramped travel accommodations by car or plane and moving suitcases it’s not uncommon to start your vacation with unwelcomed pain.
To start, I always pack my Sunbeam GoHeat™ portable heating pad! Especially during long trips, pain relief goes where you go! There’s no way I’m letting that hold me back from my summer fun! Whether it’s back pain, knee pain, neck pain or shoulder pain…I’m covered.
The flexible and portable GoHeat™ pad stays in place with a removable, adjustable strap for hands-free use and is machine washable making it the perfect addition to my vacation! Even though I bring for myself, my husband is notorious for asking to borrow it as well!
This year we are staying a bit closer to home and driving a few hours to the beach. Even though I live only a few blocks from the beach, every beach is special and I can’t wait to sit back and relax!
When it comes to reaching your fitness goals, consistency is key. And there are so many benefits to breaking a sweat that are worth setting aside some time to train while traveling, including more energy and improved mood.
That’s why I rounded up some of our top equipment-free, minimal-space travel workouts to help you make it happen no matter where you are. Plus, squeezing in a quick workout or two during your trip can make it easier to get back in the swing of things after you’ve unpacked your suitcases.
So whether you’re on the road for work, fun, or visiting family, here are four travel-friendly, stress-free workouts to try.