Best High Protein Chili Recipe

Even though its been toggling between 75 and 80 degrees here in LA, I made chili for #MealPrepMonday. Because it's October.

And October = chili. 

Chili is the perfect one-pot, no fuss, no fail meal that's full of flavor for lunch and dinner, and holds up great in the fridge throughout the week.

This one-pot wonder is packed with protein, smoky flavor, and a hint of spice - thanks to two special ingredients. The combination of chipotle peppers and beer (low carb of course) give this chili a flavor profile to remember. Ready to hook this thang on up? Here's the recipe:

High Protein Chili Ingredients
+ 1/4 cup onions, chopped
+ 1/2 cup green bell pepper, chopped
+ 1 can (198g) Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce
+ 1 can (794g) Unsalted Crushed Tomatoes
+ 1 can (439g) Cooked Red Kidney Beans
+ 1 can (439g) Cooked White Kidney Beans
+ 1 can (439g) Cooked Black Beans
+ 1412g Cooked Ground Turkey (93/7 is what I used)
+ 8 Chicken Sausage Links (I used Ardell's Chickem with Pineapple & Bacon)
+ 1 bottle (330ml) Light Beer (I used Trader Joe's)
+ Seasonings (to taste - details under Instructions)


Tools & Utensils
+ cutting board
+ knife
+ stock pot or slow cooker
+ can opener
+ bottle opener
+ large spoon (I personally like wooden)
+ blender or hand mixer (I have this blender and this hand mixer)

Instructions
Spray your stock pot with non-stick cooking spray or a smidgen of oil. Over medium-high heat, saute onions and bell peppers until tender. Add ground turkey and season it with whatever you prefer. Bring the heat down to medium. For my chili, I used:

Best High Protein Chili Recipe

+ Himalayan Pink Salt (just a smidge)
+ Hawaiian Black Salt (a few pinches)
+ Granulated Garlic
+ Onion Salt Blend (The Trader Joe's version is amazing and lower sodium)
+ Cumin
+ Chili Powder
+ Ancho Chile Powder
+ Paprika
+ Black Pepper
+ Trader Joe's 21 Seasoning Salute (salt free)

While the ground turkey is cooking, plug in that blender or hand mixer and pour in the whole can of crushed tomatoes and the whole can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Blend until both are well incorporated, while still leaving some tomato chunks behind (on my blender, I used the 2 setting for about 40 seconds). This is your chili base - full of flavor and a lil' smoky heat.

Best High Protein Chili Recipe

Set the chipotle and tomato chili base aside and remove the cooked ground turkey with onions and bell peppers from the pot. It's sausage time. Grab your sausages of choice and slice 'em. For a more even spread, I sliced the sausages down the middle, then chopped into pieces.

Best High Protein Chili Recipe

Drop the sausage in the pot, allowing them to cook for 2-3 minutes. This is a good time to weigh out your cooked ground turkey for macro purposes. Once the sausages are sizzling, put the turkey back in the pot and stir.

Best High Protein Chili Recipe

Now, it's time to bean up the chili. Working with already cooked, canned beans saves tons of time. Feel free to swap beans and add your favorites like pinto or great northern.

Open all 3 cans of beans and dump them right into the chili pot - juice and all. We're not adding any water to this recipe, so you'll need that extra juice to make sure the chili doesn't cook down too quickly.

Best High Protein Chili Recipe

Next, pour in the chipotle and tomato base. Mix until completely incorporated and turn the heat down to low. Pop open that light beer and pour it right on in the pot. Light beer has way less carbs, and brings tons of flavor. The entire bottle I used had 8.9g of carbs.

Best High Protein Chili Recipe

Cover with a lid and let it simmer for 45 minutes to an hour, stirring occasionally to make sure nothing burns and sticks to the bottom of the pot. If you're not satisfied with the consistency of the chili, a hack I like to use is smashing beans around the edge of the pot. It helps thicken without the need for added stuff.

Once you've reached the desired consistency, you're done! Serve them bad boys up in a bowl or a meal prep container!

Best High Protein Chili Recipe

Macros for High Protein Chili 
(1 Pot = 15 servings; macros are for 1 hearty serving)
+ 360 calories
+ 31.7g protein
+ 23.1g carbs
+ 14.8g fat
+ 6.5g fiber
+ 7.8g sugar

Note: Most of the carbs in this recipe are from the beans. Some of the carbs and fat also comes from the sausage I used. Feel free to swap with a leaner sausage source for even better macros.

If you try this recipe out, let me know on Instagram or in the comments below!

Even though its been toggling between 75 and 80 degrees here in LA, I made chili for #MealPrepMonday. Because it's October. And...

30 Days of Dope August 2017 Update

August was a bit of a firey month for me. Something deep inside just clicked. Better food choices. Small improvements in weekend discipline. HUGE boosts in gym work ethics. It's all starting to fall into place...

Just in time for fall. #becauseimcorny

Here's what went down in August:

Healthy Eating
There's nothing like paying $9.99/month for a service to motivate you to act right. Even though I definitely slipped up in August (hi Susiecakes Cap'n Crunch & Strawberry Rose cupcakes), I made an effort to more closely track my macros with Avatar Nutrition and be more mindful on weekends.

I've had to fight some REAL urges to derail myself in August. I did have a mid-month slump where everything was basically rubbish. But I picked it up and powered through - fighting hard to stay on track. Especially during the last week. I really felt like I was on the verge of breaking, and then God would set up little scenarios to block it.

For example, on Tuesday of this week, I had to pass Susiecakes on the way to the freeway from Bailey's vet (updated vaccinations). I was tempted to swing in for a sweet treat - but then the FedEx man delivered a HUGE box to our doorstep. Samuel called, asking if I was expecting something.

I wasn't.

30 Days of Dope August 2017 Update

He said he wasn't, either. I had to abandon my sugary pit stop plans to race home and figure out who this big @$$ box was from, and for. Turns out, it was a work-related package for me.

The very next day, I got so buried in work that I didn't eat breakfast or lunch. I looked up at nearly 2, making plans to skirt out to Burger King (hello chicken fries and onion rings), and screw up royally. For the record, I like, hardly ever go to Burger King or McDonald's (especially since Hi-C Orange was discontinued) - so this craving was nothing but satan's sorcery. As if almost on cue, Samuel calls me. I ask what time he wants to go to the gym - he says as soon as he gets home from work (he was leaving early).

I no longer had time for Burger King.

Basically, God blockt me from screwing up - and I hope He continues to do so until I can really dial in on the nutritional discipline.

Working Out
I'm not going to mince words or be coy about it - August has been LIT workout-wise. Charlie Mike is in the books, and I posted some pretty impressive strength gains. I took like 1 rest day off, and then dove head-first into my new BodyBuilding.com plan - Jim Stoppani's 12 Week Shortcut to Size.

30 Days of Dope August 2017 Update

I mentioned in my July update that I missed some of the more traditional gym moves, and Shortcut to Size is giving me exactly what I was missing. It's been kicking my butt, and I definitely wake up more days sore than not - but I'm LOVING it. I haven't skipped a single workout day (I skipped 1 rest day to move ahead, lol) and I can honestly say I'm giving this program everything I've got. My goal is to lose fat by building muscle and gaining strength. Even if the scale doesn't move (but I pray it does), I want to look visibly different at the end of this program.

12 weeks is a long time, and I'll be damned if I finish looking like I did when I started.

Habit Building
I've been sticking to my Productive app, and having some success with it. I had zero skipped days which is an improvement over July, but only 1 perfect day where I hit every single thing I wanted to do.

I think it may boil down to me trying to perfect too many habits at once. For September, I'm going to dial back and focus on the habits that I struggled to hit in August (like making my bed every day), while removing the ones that are indeed habits at this point (like tracking my meals).

Progress
This is the part that has me the most excited. My future sister-in-law reminded me to take all my photos in the same outfit, so I've got a new end-of-the-month uniform. It's definitely helping me to see more of the changes that are happening and not rely so heavily on the scale (even though it's a necessary evil).

30 Days of Dope August 2017 Update

Small changes over time eventually will add up. I'm learning to pace myself, take things one day at a time, and be patient with my progress.

30 Days of Dope August 2017 Update

Highlights
+ I checked in every week on Avatar - whether I wanted to or not!
+ I FINISHED Charlie Mike
+ I embarked on a new workout plan and have not skipped a day
+ I'm building better habits and working on my accountability to self
+ I feel strong AF. Like, the strongest I've ever been and that feeling is AMAZING because I know I can only go up from here!
+ I dropped 2.4% body fat (based on measurements tracked by Avatar)

Challenges
+ I missed my 7lb weight loss goal for the month of August. Not a total L, but still shy of what I had hoped.
+ I was only about 50/50 compliant with my macro targets - which is more than the 25% from July, but short of my 60% goal for August
+ I think I'm trying to create too many habits at once. I keep missing out on one or two things per day - whether it be making my bed or drinking ACV in the morning.

30 Days of Dope August 2017 Update

September Game Plan
+ Not miss a single Shortut to Size workout
+ Aim for 75% compliance with Avatar
+ Retool my habits in the Productive app to focus on the 3-4 most important habits I wish to build.
+ Keep feeling strong, and keep a positive mindset!

I'm excited, encouraged, and determined to make September excellent. Granted, I'm taking a short vacay in Vegas for a few days this month, but our strip hotel has a gym inside so... #noexcuses

On the food tip tho, pray for me. Vegas ain't nothing but buffets, fried food, and alcohol. πŸ˜‚

August was a bit of a firey month for me. Something deep inside just clicked. Better food choices. Small improvements in weekend discipli...

#30DaysofDope - July 2017 Update
July felt like training wheels, honestly.

More specifically, that point where you're feeling like a confident, two-wheelin' pro, and literally BEG to have the training wheels taken off your bike because, you got this.

And then you fall.

But even though you fell, you fell forward. It stings, hurts your pride a lil' bit, but ultimately results in growth.

Yep, that's July in a nutshell.

Here's why.

Healthy Eating
At this point in the game, I'm a #mealprep pro, and pretty much addicted to grilling protein. Meal prepping is literally a part of my life at this point. Monday thru Thursday is never the problem. The problem - consistency, and without fail - is Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Admittedly, I meal prep to last the duration of the work week (Monday-Friday lunchtime), and pretty much spend the weekend in a freefall.

I'll be the first to admit that you can easily undo a week's worth of disciplined eating and hard work in a weekend at Cheesecake Factory, Hooters, BJ's, Lucille's, and everywhere else. For the larger part of July, that's been the struggle. My only saving grace has been Friday being a cheat/higher macro day, which offsets some of the damage from the rest of the weekend (or at least I'd like to think so).

The end result, to be honest, is me feeling like I'm "starting over" to regain the previous week's progress every Monday.

And this is where my re-investment in Avatar Nutrition comes in.

#30DaysofDope - July 2017 Update

Back in March, I took a leap of faith and signed myself up for Avatar Nutrition, seeking increased accountability, support, and more targeted approach to nutrition in support of my fitness goals. I'm in no way sponsored by Avatar Nutrition, and surely do pay my $9.99 per month like every other member. I used it diligently from March to April, and pretty much fell off until July (all while still paying for itπŸ˜‘).

At the top of July, I checked in, updated my profile, and got knee deep into the private Facebook group. This time around, I'm committed to getting every penny of my $9.99 from Avatar Nutrition. So far, I've been sticking to my weekly check-ins, and working to become more compliant with my macros. It's a struggle, but I'll get there.

Working Out
If you follow me on Instagram, then you know I kicked off late June starting a workout routine from BodyBuilding.com called Charlie Mike, with Ashley Horner. I was looking for a targeted workout program that was going to stretch me, challenge me, and teach me.

#30DaysofDope - July 2017 Update

And let me tell you - I got just that. Because of travel and a few other commitments, I'm about 2 weeks behind completion on the program. I should've been done earlier, but I'm finishing week 6 of 6 this week. Charlie Mike is not a workout program for a beginner, or for the faint of heart - there are some pretty intense and pretty heavy lifts involved. There's even some workout moves that I struggled through or skipped altogether because they were above my capabilities (looking at you burpees, man makers, and wall walks).

And while I'm proud of myself for learning some new moves - barbell thrusters, push presses, clean & jerk, kettlebell windmills and more - I won't lie. I miss fundamental stuff like curls, and rows, and lat pulldowns and whatnot. As this is my final week of Charlie Mike, I'm on the prowl for a new program that will continue to challenge me with crossfit/powerlifting moves combined with more traditional exercises.

#30DaysofDope - July 2017 Update

Of the entire 6 week program, I only pressed "skip workout" twice - which ain't too shabby if you ask me. Overall, I'm proud of myself for getting uncomfortable, trying new things, and pushing past moves I didn't think I could do.

Habit Building
One of the MAJOR things I lacked during previous #30DaysofDope cycles was a true mechanism for habit building. I've long since proven to myself that just writing down goals was not effective enough for me. In fact, I revealed in this post that I couldn't even find my dang goal journal in July. Not only did I completely re-write my 2017 goals over mid-year, I came up with a more decisive plan of attack to support them.

That's where this newfangled (to me) app called Productive comes in. It's literally an app devoted to helping you create and track habits and goals. I went ahead and splurged $3.99 for the full version, and I'm so happy I did. Since the day I installed it, I've been on a mission - breaking down each goal into daily or weekly habits that I know will ultimately lead to my success.

I'll dive into this app more in a future post, but for now just know - I have reminders set for everything from make our bed, to track my macros and drink water.

Interested in seeing what the Productive app is all about? Click here to check it out!

Progress
Folks usually drop progress pics for likes and accolades, but I'm not interested in all of that. This is about two things - accountability, and tracking visible progress. I'm not ashamed to admit that a whole lot didn't change in July. Because, training wheels. Anywho, I'll be dropping month-to-month comparison shots, in an effort to more consistently track my journey.

#30DaysofDope - July 2017 Update

Highlights
There were some definite wins in July. I managed to:
+ Set NEW goals for 2017
+ Stick to my weekly check-ins with Avatar Nutrition
+ Make it to week 6 of Charlie Mike
+ Create a system of developing new habits for myself
+ Drop 3.4% body fat (based on measurements tracked by Avatar)

Challenges
+ I set a goal to lose 7lbs per month. My beginning and end of the month weight didn't really change, but my measurements did a little bit. It's not a total L, but August definitely leaves room for opportunities.
+ I was out of compliance with my set macros for the majority of July.
+ Even with my Productivity app, there are some days where I skip out on meeting my water intake goal, drinking my ACV, or even forget to track macros.

August Game Plan
As I said in the beginning of the blog post, July was all about training wheels - getting back in the groove of things. August, I'm turning things up a notch. My game plan is to:
+ Find a new workout plan to pick up where Charlie Mike left off - integrating traditional weight exercises with crossfit style lifts
+ Be compliant with my macros for at least 60% of August thru September 1 (Fridays are my check-in days for Avatar Nutrition)
+ Have a PERFECT month streak with my Productive app - meaning I hit every goal, every day.

Wish me luck guys! I can't wait to see where I land in September!

Want more day-to-day information on my journey? Follow me on Instagram!

July felt like training wheels, honestly. More specifically, that point where you're feeling like a confident, two-wheelin' pro,...

What's Been Going On? The NEW #30DaysofDope

:::blows dust off blog:::

Is anybody still here? Y'all checking for #30DaysofDope online and on Instagram, or nah? If you unfollowed me because you figured this was a hobby/fad that came, went, and was abandoned - I can't blame you.

But at least let me explain what's happened since March.

I fell off - HARD. Like, got so set in my old ways that it almost seemed like any progress I made was long gone. My gym motivation waned. My energy dipped. I literally did whatever I wanted - and paid the price dearly in terms of falling short of my goals.

It's a tough pill to swallow, but I have to own the fact that I wasted 3 months that could have brought me so much closer to my goals.

So I thought long and hard, prayed, and bounced ideas off my official sounding board AKA Samuel. We both agreed that the concept of #30DaysofDope was solid, but my execution/vision was off balance. The biggest problem? Limiting "cycles" to 30 days.

By creating challenges/cycles, I set myself and everyone else up for failure. If lifestyle changes are truly my goal, then the methodology needs to reflect that. It wasn't until late June that I had an *aha* moment -

A month is roughly 30 days. So in theory, #30DaysofDope still works. The flaw was in the lack of continuity - not checking in, challenging, and ultimately changing myself until the mood struck me again. Bouncing around to arbitrary months ultimately meant one thing (which I had proven to myself time and time again) - that I would be on point for 30 days, fall off the wagon, and have to pick myself back up again. I don't need a blog, challenge, or Instagram page dedicated to that! I can follow that cycle all on my own! πŸ˜‚

So here's the shift - no more cycles. No more solicitations to join me. No more blueprints and guidelines. I'm lasering in on my strengths, and sticking close to the model that has worked for The Mane Objective for so many years - to be a journal and a resource. So here's what you can expect from #30DaysofDope:
+ Monthly check-ins and progress updates
+ Recipe shares
+ Reviews (fitness/healthy lifestyle/food/supplements and more)
+ Tool & resource sharing
+ More activity on Instagram (yay!)
+ Healthy living info, inspo, and more!

What you may have noticed, is that I've pulled away from the content focused on mental and spiritual health. Don't get it twisted - I'm still very much working on both, and there's a chance that in the future I may share things related to those journeys. But for right now, I want to use this blog to document and share more tangible, visible things. I'm still very open to discussing both, and if you've got any questions, you can always hit me at christina[at]30daysofdope.com.

All this being said, part 2 is coming later today. I've got some exciting updates to share for July!

:::blows dust off blog::: Is anybody still here? Y'all checking for #30DaysofDope online and on Instagram , or nah? If you unfollow...

#30DaysofDope Week 2 and 3 Update

During Week 2 of #30DaysofDope, I somehow managed to be not dope... I didn't post anything! I didn't e-mail you guys, barely posted to Instagram...I mean sheesh!

My bad.

I didn't mean to leave you guys high and dry. So as to not be late two weeks in a row, I'm combining my week 2 and 3 update to share with you guys - the good, the bad, the ugly, and the delicious.

Let's dive in!

Dope Mind
Am I the only one wrestling with Necessary Endings right now? Although I've read much further into the book, I find myself stewing around Chapter 4. The title alone is a gut punch -
When Stuck Is the New Normal: The Difference Between Pain with a Purpose and Pain for No Good Reason
Listen.

Currently, I'm assessing that thing we talked about a few weeks ago via e-mail - yep, The Mane Objective. After a long, hearty conversation with Samuel, I'm trying to determine whether it's a necessary ending, or if I've succumbed to "learned helplessness". According to Dr. Cloud, learned helpnessness is "a condition in which the person adapts to the misery because they feel there is nothing they can do about it."

In the learned helplessness model, we interpret events in a negative way, seeing them as personalized (I'm what's wrong), pervasive (everything about this is wrong), and then permanent (nothing is going to change). In learned helplessness, we shut down in the face of things we can't control - to the point that we do not execute the activities and outcomes that we can control.

Was I hasty in my decision making and declaration about the future of my blog? Maybe. My goal for the weekend is to execute the activity on page 57 and:

  • Take a piece of paper and divide it into two columns
  • In column 1, write down all the things that I cannot control that are affecting me as it relates to my blog/business
  • In column 2, write down all the things I do have control over
  • Take action on the column 2 items
If you're hitting a wall with a particular area of your life, please do feel free to join me in this activity. We'll push through together!

Dope Body
Can I brag a lil' bit?

I'm PROUD AF of myself!!!! I said I was going to workout 8x/week, and after falling 1 workout short during week 1, I went #beastmode for weeks 2 and 3! It feels SO good to set an uncomfortable goal and smash the crap out of it. Two weeks in a row, at that! Well, almost. It's Saturday morning of week 3, and I've already hit 7 of my 8 workouts - including one at 4:30am (lol). I've got all of today and tomorrow to make it do what it do - so I'm 137% sure I'll hit my goal between today and tomorrow. Heck, I might even go super ham and hit 9 workouts! I'll keep you guys posted via e-mail!

#30DaysofDope Week 2 and 3 Update

Meal prepping has been meal prepping has been meal prepping - has been meal prepping. No new news - except I've been obsessed with broccoli for like 3 weeks. Other than that, meal prep has become second nature to me. I'll be sure to do a post soon about #MealPrep101 to help those of you guys looking to get on board with this time saving practice!

I've been trying my best to go 80/20 with my Avatar Nutrition macros, and I won't lie - it's a day-to-day struggle. Eating meal preps is easy, but consuming enough protein is HARD. Some days, despite how delicious my Syntha-6 Edge is, I just don't can't even. And there are times, like womanly events, that throw you off course in a real way. I've learned to just go with the flow (ha!), and bounce back later. It's all a process.

Dope Spirit
I don't have a whole lot to say here, because I've been at peace for the most part. But I do have my moments where doubt and comparison envy creep in. In those moments, I take a look at my screenshot from Chase The Lion and let it marinatemarinate - The God who did it before can do it again. 

When I find myself frustrated, upset, or feeling down about not being where I thought I'd be by now, I take a moment to look how FAR God has brought me from where I was. I've seen in my own life how God has moved, promoted, blessed, sustained, made a way, and been gracious and merciful toward me. His track record in my life is flawless. 

In those moments when I'm preparing to RSVP for the Pity Party, I challenge myself to stop, remember, and celebrate all that God has done.

And then I find peace :)

How have the past two weeks been for you? Let me know in the comments below or shoot me an e-mail at christina[at]30daysofdope.com! Enjoy the weekend fam!

During Week 2 of #30DaysofDope, I somehow managed to be not dope... I didn't post anything! I didn't e-mail you guys, barely post...

#30DaysofDope Week 1 Update - March 2017

I'm a few days behind in posting this, but can you believe we're about to walk into week 2 already? This cycle is flying by.

And even though Daylight Saving Time is giving me the business right now, I wanted to make sure this post (and my #DopeFam email) made it out before Monday rolled around.

My first full week (and some change, since we technically started mid-week) was full of ups and downs - and I'm pretty sure i'm not the only one.

Let's dive in.

Dope Mind
Reading Necessary Endings again is blessing me in ways I didn't think possible. It's funny how you can read a book during one season of your life, and then read it again at another time, and it takes on a totally different meaning. That's exactly where I am with Necessary Endings. When I first came across the book about 6 years ago, I was reading through the lens of  necessary endings for relationships. In this season, I'm reading with my business lenses on, but also finding ways this applies to my fitness/wellness journey, too.

As I mull over and absorb the content of Necessary Endings (I'll go deeper in my e-mail with you guys!), I always return to one central point -

Getting to the next level always requires ending something, leaving it behind, and moving on.

It reminds me of one of my favorite quotes (I don't know who said it) - every next level of your life will demand a different version of you.

#30DaysofDope Week 1 Update - March 2017


In the coming days, I'll be asking myself a few tough questions about my focus, my time, where I'm directing my energy, and if it all aligns with my goals and God's plan. I've got a feeling I'm not going to like some of the answers I'll have for myself...

But that's what Necessary Endings is about, right? Taking an honest self inventory and learning to proactively end things before they're allowed to siphon off resources that could have been devoted to to other areas of our lives that would bear more fruit (or roses).

What things in your life is Necessary Endings challenging you to confront? Let me know in the comments below!

Dope Body
In my first e-mail to you guys, I shared that my goals are to follow the 80/20 rule for eating according to my macros, and working out 8x per week. Let's break that down some more, and shed some light on what actually happened.

#30DaysofDope Week 1 Update - March 2017

I had a heart-to-heart with myself about my eating habits, what worked, what didn't, and how I can create positive progress for myself that sticks beyond this cycle. I realized that my previous meal plan set my carbs way low - and for me, a carb lover, that's simply not sustainable over the long term. I took a leap and signed up for Avatar Nutrition - it costs $10 a month, and I'm giving it a go just for this cycle of #30DaysofDope. If I end up liking my results/progress, I'll keep going. If not, I'll be a'cancelling!

The craziest difference between my previous numbers with MyFitnessPal and Avatar Nutrition is that even though I've set my goal target for "fast fat loss", my calorie and macro totals are still wayyyyy higher than they were. It's a mental thing that I'm trying to wrap my mind around - eating more to actually lose fat and build/maintain lean mass and strength. I got so alarmed that I e-mailed the Avatar Nutrition CEO (because I'm extra like that lol), and expressed my concerns. Mark was super responsive, broke the information down for me, and just asked that I trust the system. So I'ma trust the system until 30 days is up. I'll do a full review of Avatar Nutrition once my first month is up - but for now, just know I'm throwing back BSN Syntha-6 Edge (Strawberry Milkshake is to DIE for!) protein shakes and Isopure drinks (love mango peach!) like a mad woman.

#30DaysofDope Week 1 Update - March 2017
Tastes just like Strawberry Nesquik. Y'all have NO idea. I'm HOOKED!
Meal prep is still in effect though - no changes there. Making it happen one lil' black container at a time. I haven't stopped meal prepping since the September 2016 cycle of #30DaysofDope - it's a habit now (in a good way)!

Now, about this workout thing. I decided that in order to break through my plateau and really go next level with my fitness goals, that I needed to do something that I've never done before. Make myself uncomfortable. Like really uncomfortable. So I decided to commit myself to working out 8 times per week. Yes, I know there are only 7 days in a week - so to avoid being in the gym every single day, I'm doubling up and doing two-a-days on some days. Gave myself a "trial run" from February 27th thru March 5th, and I hit 7 out of 8 days. The first full week of March (6th thru 12th), I hit 7 days again. In truth, this past week was a rough one. Family emergencies and special assignments took me off my rhythm, but I hung in there and did the best I could. In fact, as I write this, I made a conscious decision not to make today (Sunday March 12th) workout #8. Not that I didn't want to actually meet my goal, but I had to be honest. I'm late in getting this blog post up, late in sending my week 1 e-mail out, and I need to go to the grocery store to buy veggies and meat for #MealPrepMonday. I decided that instead of hitting workout #8, it would be much more beneficial for my sanity (and stress levels) to do the things I need to do in preparation for a successful week.

Plus, Lord willing - I'll be in the gym bright and early Monday morning.

Dope Spirit
HOW DOPE WAS CHASE THE LION THOUGH?! Oh my God, this second reading around blessed me in a mighty way! If you're anything like me, you've got several screenshots of various quotes from the devotional text. MAN. I was totally blown away again. I love it when two seemingly unrelated texts "talk" to each other - I totally believe in confirmation and I'm convinced that God put it on my heart to re-read Chase The Lion while re-reading Necessary Endings.

For me, the gut-check is knowing that God has put me on a path to achieve the goals and dreams He's given me - but there are some things, some detractors, some behaviors, practices, and projects that I've got to put down to actualize all that He has planned for me. I've got to assess and execute some necessary endings in order to give full chase to my lions.

Throughout the rest of the month, I'll be sharing some of my most memorable takeaways from Chase The Lion here and via e-mail with my #DopeFam. Stay tuned!

How did the first week of #30DaysofDope work out for you? Let me know in the comments below!

I'm a few days behind in posting this, but can you believe we're about to walk into week 2 already? This cycle is flying by. ...

Welcome to #30DaysofDope - March 2017 Cycle!

What up #DopeFam?

Can I just tell you how excited I am to get this ball rolling? I stopped and started and stopped and started and stopped planning the first 2017 cycle of #30DaysofDope. I wanted to launch in January, but didn't wanna prey on the New Year Resolution type folk.

I started to start in February, but I knew I wouldn't be able to give it my all. And I'm very much of the mindset that if I can't do it right, I shouldn't do it at all.

That said, I'm so glad to have you joining me on this journey. I can already feel it - this cycle is gonna be something special. Something new. Something more dope than the previous iterations.

I know it's late in the day, but I hope you had an amazing day 1. Before the day is totally over (or before we get too far in to tomorrow), I need you to do 4 things for me:

1. Make sure you're on the list. When you go to www.30daysofdope.com, there should be a pink bar at the top of the page saying "Join the #DopeFam". Once you add your e-mail and first name to that list, you're in. If for some reason you can't make it do what it do, just drop me an e-mail at christina[at]30daysofdope.com and I'll add ya!

2. Download/pin/save/screenshot the official prep list for this cycle. You can find it on this post here, or download it direct here. We'll be chatting about experiences with Necessary Endings and Chase The Lion intimately on our weekly e-mails and posts here, and I want to make sure you've got everything you need to be on the same page with the group!

3. Write. Down. Your. Goals. Part of the journey to personal excellence is holding yourself accountable to the things you said you would do. When I e-mail the #DopeFam tomorrow morning, I'm going to share my personal goals for this next 30 days with you all. Feel free to write me back with yours. #accountabilitypartners

4. Document where you started. In the same vein as writing your goals down, the only way to measure your progress is to know where you started. If you're looking for a mental shift - say, going from feeling frustrated about xyz, start by journaling what frustrates you, why you're frustrated by it, and how you wish you would be able to handle/address the situation in an ideal world. Same thing with physical and spiritual. If I want to lose 5 pounds this month, or cook at least 2 meals a week, I need to start by being honest with myself about my current state. This may also involve a "before" picture - although you don't have to. It might be a hard pill to swallow, but I promise you'll be looking at yourself on March 31st like GO ME!

If you need a little more guidance, or a few tips on how to make this cycle of #30DaysofDope a success, click here to read my kickoff thoughts from the last cycle. Some of the info has changed, but the principles still apply!

Day 1 is almost done. The next 29 is going to be nothing short of amazing!

What up #DopeFam? Can I just tell you how excited I am to get this ball rolling? I stopped and started and stopped and started and stop...