Pumpkin Bars

BRRRRRRRR it has been soooo cold here in Lil Rhody lately.

http://girlgonehealthy.com/pumpkinbars/But all of this chilly winter weather hasn’t taken away my love of Fall flavors.

Especially my LOVE of my Pumpkin Bars….. go on and load the printer with paper you’ll be making this one ASAP!


Girl Gone Healthy Pumpkin Bars:

1/2 cup butter, softened (I used I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter)

1/2 cup brown sugar (I used the Splenda brown sugar blend)

1 cup all-purpose flour (can use Wheat Flour)

1/2 cup rolled oats

2 eggs

3/4 cup Splenda or Stevia

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin

1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

In a medium bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar. Mix in flour. Fold in oats. Press into a 9×13 inch baking dish. Bake in preheated oven 15 minutes, until set.

In a large bowl, beat eggs with Stevia or Splenda. Beat in pumpkin and evaporated milk. Mix in salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. Pour over baked crust. Bake in preheated oven 20 minutes, until set.

Let cool before cutting into squares. Devour!

These were soooooooo good and I love that it was like having a mini pumpkin pie.

What’s your favorite Fall flavor? Pumpkin or Apple? Tell me in the comments below.

Healthy Wishes, T

Copy Cat Pasta E Fagioli

I LOVE Olive Garden, no like LOVE it. I love it pregnant or not and it is by far one of my biggest “craving” restaurants.


I always get soup, salad, and bread sticks…. I mean do they serve anything else? ( The answer is No, no they don’t.)


Like most places Olive Garden isn’t exactly healthy and if you go there and don’t indulge on a bread stick then you’re like the strongest person in the world I am NOT that person LOL. I was craving OG the other day and since Fall has been making her way into RI I decided to try my hand at my favorite OG soup, Pasta E Fagioli!

Copy Cat Olive Garden Past E Fagioli

  • 2 cups small shells pasta
  • 1 pound (mild or spicy) ground Italian sausage
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 3 cups chicken broth (1 box)
  • 1 (16-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 table spoon Italian seasoning
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can Great Northern beans, drained and rinsed

In a large skillet, coated with coking spray, brown sausage and 1/2 of the onion until cooked through, set aside.

Place all veggies, beans, pasta, and spices into crock pot and give a quick stir to mix everything. Add sausage and onion mix to crock pot and stir once again combining well. Pour tomato sauce and chicken stock on top, stirring yet again, cover crock pot and allow soup to simmer on high for 2 to 3 hours or until pasta and veggies are tender. (Liquid should be covering all of your ingredients, feel free to add a cup of water if needed)


While I didn’t serve this with bread sticks and salad I was happy to see that I didn’t need to! This was absolutely delish and it honestly tastes better the next day.

You can find so many wonderful copy cat recipes on Pinterest and this is a combo of 3 or 4 different versions of this soup, my spin was the crock pot ;-).

What’s your favorite soup, tell me in the comments below!

Healthy Wishes, T

My Son Is On The Spectrum, It’s Not A Death Sentence

The other day I was chatting with a family friend who has known Zachary, my 7 1/2 year old son, for a good portion of Zac’s life. Zac has attended parties at this person’s home, with their family and friends who he is only familiar with a small portion of, they have attended Zac’s Birthday Parties, been in our home for cook outs, game nights etc… they have seen Zac’s progress and triumphs and yes they have seen the areas he still needs to work on but what they said to me earlier this week has stuck with me EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. since. As we were chatting about Harper and her arrival in 2016 the following question was asked,

“So, when will you know if she is like him?”

I was caught completely off guard because my response was, “when will I know if Harper is like who?” and the next words made my heart stop “you know when will you know if she’s like Zac, you know have problems”.

In that moment it is still amazing to me that I was able to speak, remain calm, and not run over and throat punch them. How could you say “have problems”? How could you think that my wonderfully smart, funny, courageous, compassionate, SINCERE little boy has problems? Why? Because he doesn’t speak loudly or doesn’t call out to you every single time he sees you or because he doesn’t eat chicken nuggets and pizza and drink copious amounts of juice like “other kids” or because when there are large groups of people in a house that he doesn’t live in and only frequents for special occasions he may be using an iPhone to help him be social…… I could go on.


I understand that not every one is “educated” or “aware” of what children who are on the Spectrum are like and what life for the parents is like but what strikes me as even more shocking is the lack of filter people have, the lack of ability to put themselves (or try to) in someone elses shoes. We are so LUCKY that Zac has the qualities he does because so many of the children on the Spectrum don’t.

Children on the Spectrum Don’t Typically:

-Make eye contact…. Zac does


-Like to give hugs, kisses, show affection or emotion…. these are some of Zac’s FAVORITE things to do


-Thrive in loud environments, do well with new people, they typically run and seek “shelter”…. Zac just smiles, laughs, claps and makes the best of it – to him he’s just like everyone else.

-They don’t “joke” or “get things/jokes” and take things extremely literally…. Zac is one of the biggest, but slyest, ball busters I know


-Ride Roller Coasters or Set off the scariest and loudest items at the Halloween Store


And these are just a FEW of the things that come to mind.


                 Running His First 5k

When I look at Zac my heart swells with emotion, pride, and love – I WOULD NOT CHANGE HIM FOR THE WORLD. If Harper even has a fraction of Zachary’s compassion, sensitivity, polite and respectful nature – which he has for both adults and other children, and willingness to persevere then that my friends is perfection.

Each child on the Spectrum is different, that’s why it is a Spectrum it’s BROAD. Zac’s diagnosis, to be exact, is Developmental Delay with emphasis on Speech (though now I have to ask him to be quiet – a blessing I never thought we would have.) So not every kid on this Spectrum is Autistic, has Aspergers, or is like your neighbor’s cousin’s kid who just screams all day long.

As I close this post out I want you to come away from it, those who don’t know a child on the Spectrum, with a new perspective when it comes to seeing other children in public. The child who may be focused intently on their iPad or parent’s phone could finally be understanding a life skill because they are watching another child on YouTube tie their shoes, eat popcorn, run, jump, skip or play. They might finally be able to call out “MAMA” for the first time because of an app that helped them with basic vocabulary skills. They might finally be able to allow their parents to grocery shop peacefully and quickly and sans melt down. Just try to take a step back before you judge, comment, or write them off in your mind – please.


Healthy Wishes, T

I Love Fall Most of All

Long time no blog! Life sure has been a whirl wind lately and just in case you missed it……

ItsAGirlGGHThat’s right we are having a GIRL! I’m still in shock and we’ve known for a few weeks now. This pregnancy has been so completely different in so many ways specifically the sickness that has been far from just morning sickness – its been ALL DAY sickness. I haven’t been able to do much of anything except lay around and be nauseas up until a couple of weeks ago, sounds super glamorous right?

BUT, I’m feeling better now and I’m so happy because its my FAVORITE time of the year, FALL!!


We have already indulged in some Fall themed activities including apple picking!


Visited the Halloween Store, which is Zac’s favorite activity – he LOVES Halloween.

http://girlgonehealthy.com/i-love-fall-most-of-all/And of course we have put our Fall decor out, this is our Front Entry Room!

http://girlgonehealthy.com/i-love-fall-most-of-all/But it wouldn’t truly be Fall around here without whipping up a batch of Spice Tea. This is one of my most favorite memories from growing up, it is a family tradition on my Dad’s side and it is AMAZING.


While it isn’t necessarily the healthiest recipe it is such a nice treat and the recipe makes a large batch so you can easily create gifts with it.

Girl Gone Healthy's Family Recipe: Spice Tea
Write a review
394 calories
102 g
0 g
1 g
4 g
0 g
659 g
2 g
84 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 394
Calories from Fat 5
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g
Saturated Fat 0g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 2mg
Total Carbohydrates 102g
Dietary Fiber 15g
Sugars 84g
Protein 4g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 2 cups Orange Tang
  2. 1 cup Instant Tea Mix (Lemon Flavored)
  3. 1/4 cup of Sugar
  4. 1 1/2 tablespoons of Cinnamon
  1. Mix everything together until combined. To drink, add 1 cup of hot water to 1 to 2 tablespoons of Spice Tea mix.
  1. Store in a canister or mason jar and enjoy all season long.
Girl Gone Healthy http://girlgonehealthy.com/

How have you been Celebrating Fall? Tell me in the comments below and feel free to share your favorite Fall recipes and I will feature them here!

Healthy Wishes, T

Weight Gain

So if you haven’t heard by now our little family of three will be increased to a little family of four in February/March 2016.

http://girlgonehealthy.com/weight-gain/And while this is a super exciting time for our family, please don’t take this post as an “unexcited to be expecting a baby” type post, I’m just so very afraid of the weight gain. I KNOW weight gain is inevitable and very necessary during pregnancy but it still doesn’t ease my mind. When I became pregnant with Zachary in 2007 I was 230/235 pounds at CONCEPTION and watched the scale travel all the way to 275/280 as I happily ate anything and everything in my path, didn’t do any physical activity outside of the little bit my then job required which was walking and trust me it was not a lot and somewhere deep inside I KNEW I was headed for trouble but I just kept telling myself “It’s ok to eat this because I’m pregnant” and “I’ll lose it all right after he’s born” and other fun lies we tell ourselves. I didn’t “look” pregnant until I was 8 months and that was the worst part and one of my fears this time around. I did go on to lose the weight eventually, hence the birth of Girl Gone Healthy, but I don’t want to be in that miserable, uncomfortable, depressed space ever again.

I’m nowhere near that now for a starting weight BUT I did put some weight on once I stopped birth control, yes I’m one of those weirdo people who need birth control (mostly the hormones) to help keep my weight in check. We have been trying since October 2014 and in that time I put on about 15 pounds and then took it back off and then my back went out in May and I had to stop running and about 10 of those pounds seemed to creep back on and then I found out I was expecting……. it just made me so angry at myself for not being at my lowest/comfortable weight when we finally conceived. I find myself staring at myself in the mirror throughout the day just horrified that no one will know I’m pregnant they’ll just think I became lazy and gained weight until that 8 month mark like I experienced with Zac.

So how can I snap myself out of it? How can I make it through this pregnancy with happiness and enjoyment and the mind-set that there is NOTHING I can do about some weight gain, trust me I asked my Dr apparently NO ONE is immune to weight gain during pregnancy, and she gave me this handy little photo followed by “you may not gain the full amount but I’m sure it will be close.

http://girlgonehealthy.com/weight-gain/As I sat there staring at it she asked me to tell her what I was already doing that made this pregnancy different from the last one, she was my Dr then too ;-), and so I rattled off…..


http://girlgonehealthy.com/weight-gain/I have been craving salads, protein like steak-chicken-turkey-nuts-peanut butter, I haven’t had any coffee with the exception of decaf, I increased my water in take, I’m taking vitamins, I limit sweets but I’ve still had some on occasion, I have been eating fruit, I’m exercising daily walking a minimum of 30 minutes everyday (the amount of time varies according to my morning/night sickness)….. and as I looked up at her I began to smile as I realized I’m already in such a better place this time around. I did NONE of that (except the vitamins) with Zac I just need to reign in the emotion and keep doing it this way. Have I eaten things I “shouldn’t”? You betcha! I had a weekend where all I wanted was white carbs like bread, pasta, pizza, all the comfort type foods and I was absolutely miserable after eating them. I have been craving blue berry pancakes 24/7 for about a week now and I have a total of 4 in that time, 2 each serving, and I haven’t felt guilty but satisfied.


This new part of the journey isn’t what I expected and I have to say it is going to be tough but it will be worth it in the end. I think I’m just hoping the “pregnancy look” happens this time, I don’t think that’s too much to ask for ;-).

For those of you who have experienced weight loss and pregnancy, whether it was before-during-after, how did you cope with the weight gain? Share your stories in the comments below! Thanks for indulging in my rant and I hope you can all appreciate my honesty as that’s something I’ve always tried to be with all of you, honest.


Healthy Wishes, T

Girl Gone….. WHAT?!

I’ll just let the pictures do the talking 😉


http://girlgonehealthy.com/girl-gone-what/ http://girlgonehealthy.com/girl-gone-what/

That’s right we are HAVING A BABY!! The newest edition to our Family will arrive in March of 2016. We are super excited and I am super excited to take Girl Gone Healthy in a TOTALLY different direction. I will be sharing what I eat, what I’m doing for work out’s, how I am dealing with WEIGHT GAIN that is necessary (I’m freaking out about that part already as the scale has been on the move) and everything in between! I wanted to announce this so early, I am 8 weeks, because I wanted you all along for the ride for as much of it as possible. When I became pregnant with Zac, in 2007, I was weighing it at 235/240 at CONCEPTION. I am starting off with a different mind set and weight, but it is still a little scary. I hope you will all join me on this “New” Journey and share your Healthy Pregnancy stories with me.


Healthy Wishes, T

The Cake Therapist

http://girlgonehealthy.com/the-cake-therapist/I finished up my second book, The Cake Therapist, sent to me by my PR guru friend this weekend and while it was an easy read I don’t know if I honestly would’ve kept reading if I hadn’t promised a review.

Don’t get me wrong it wasn’t horrible it just wasn’t they type of book, I personally, got the “OMG I can’t put this book down” feeling from. I felt a bit lost the first time we traveled back in time, seemingly out of nowhere, and I kind of stayed there until the end where all of the loose ends were tied up.

I researched the author, Judith Fertig, and discovered that she was a cook book author which made perfect sense when I reflected on the deep descriptions she gave to all of the delectable desserts described and it also made me realize that CHOCOLATE is my flavor no matter what turmoil is present in my life.


If you’re looking for a weekend read, maybe something for the beach or pool that you can put down and come back to at your leisure then The Cake Therapist is the book for you!

Find more on Judith here: Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.


Tell me what books have you been indulging in lately? Share in the comments below!


Healthy Wishes, T

Creamy, Crunchy, Weight Loss?

Peanut Butter, the mere mention of it makes people salivate. How many times in your life have you grabbed the jar, cracked it open, and scooped up a heaping spoonful all just to lick it away like warm gooey ice cream?

http://girlgonehealthy.com/creamy-crunchy-weight-loss/Most of us can probably say we’ve done this a few times! But at anywhere from 150-600 calories per TABLESPOON that’s probably not such a good idea. Let’s not forget the high amounts of fat, oils, and SUGAR this little “treat” is bringing to the table.

The real question is Can I eat/have peanut butter while trying to lose weight?”

Yes! BUT, there’s always a but, it needs to be portioned, limited, controlled, monitored which ever term doesn’t frighten you or make you feel restricted go with that! BRAND also plays a big role in the allowance of peanut butter into your weight loss regimen; see the brands recommend below as well as the one’s you should say NO WAY to!

http://girlgonehealthy.com/creamy-crunchy-weight-loss/I love the pre-portioned cups and quick/easy “no thought” option the Jif To Go Natural cups provide. Made with palm oil as opposed to hydrogenated oils this is a healthier option, however it still boasts 250 calories, 20 g of fat, 11g of carbs, and 4g of sugar. You’ll find 9g of protein in this brand. Ingredients: peanuts, sugar, palm oil, contains 2% or less of salt, molasses.




http://girlgonehealthy.com/creamy-crunchy-weight-loss/PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter. It may sound like astronaut food but for those who are PB CRAZY this is your best bet! Just 2 tablespoons have 45 calories!!! Other nutritional positives: 1g of fat, 6g of carbs, 3g of sugar, and 4g of protein. Ingredients: Roasted peanuts, sugar, and salt.
Oh and it comes in CHOCOLATE! (No nutritional difference!)




http://girlgonehealthy.com/creamy-crunchy-weight-loss/2 tablespoons boasts 200 calories, 12g of fat, 21g of carbs, 21g of sugar, and 2g of protein. WOW! Ingredients: Sugar, Vegetable Oil, Hazelnuts(13%), Fat Reduced Cocoa(7.4%), Skimmed Milk Powder(6.6%), Whey Powder , Emulsifier: Lecithins(soya), Vanillin-artificial flavoring.



http://girlgonehealthy.com/creamy-crunchy-weight-loss/Skippy Super Chunk (and all of the other Super Chunk, Flavored, Marketed towards KIDS type peanut butter)
2 tablespoons has 190 calories, 16g of fat, 7g of carbs, 3g of sugar, and 7g of protein. Ingredients: roasted peanuts, sugar, partially hydrogenated vegetable oils (cottonseed, soybean and grapeseed) to prevent separation, salt.



I want to know your thoughts on PB? Do you eat it, add it into your morning shakes? Maybe you use Sun Butter or another type of Nut Butter…share in the comments below!


Healthy Wishes, T

Summer Secrets

There is just something about warm sunshine, a cool glass of lemon water and a good book. You feel relaxed, able to let the worries of the world to slip away for a bit as you are transported to where ever the author takes you.

That’s how Jane Green will make you feel as you read her perfect Summer page turner, Summer Secrets.


Jane takes us through Cat’s tumultuous upbringing, and trouble with drinking a little too much a little too often, in London and then seamlessly transports us to Nantucket, with descriptions so vividly real you’ll feel as though you really are at Steps Beach or strolling Main Street after coffee and papers at The Hub.


Summer Secrets was such an easy, fun read. Jane’s characters all have traits and personalities we can all relate to IRL, in real life, as well as become attached to when we need to escape our own obstacles. Summer Secrets is truly one of the Best reads of the Summer!

For more about Jane Green take a peek at her site, http://www.janegreen.com/, and don’t forget to Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Healthy Wishes and Happy Page Turning, T

Feeling Fruity

In the Summer months fruit is like nature’s candy and a big temptation to most. In fact some diets encourage you to eat ALL the fruit you want, any kind, just eat-eat-eat….. WRONG. When we take into consideration how quickly certain fruits can raise blood glucose levels and take a look at the glycemic and insulin responses the body has from those fruits we learn that not all fruit is created equal! (Remember, insulin grows FAT CELLS!)

Education Time: The glycemic load is a classification of different carbohydrates that measures their impact on the body and blood sugar. The glycemic load details the amount of carbohydrates a food contains and its glycemic index, a measurement of its impact on blood sugar. GL = GI/100 x Net Carbs (Net Carbs are equal to the Total Carbohydrates minus Dietary Fiber)

Fruits (By Glycemic Load)

Fruit Glycemic Load Serving Size (grams)
Lime 1 120g
Strawberry 1 120g
Lemon 3 120g
Cherries 3 120g
Grapefruit 3 120g
Pear 4 120g
Canteloupe 4 120g
Watermelon 4 120g
Apricot 5 120g
Oranges 5 120g
Peach 5 120g
Plum 5 120g
Apple 6 120g
Kiwi 6 120g
Pineapple 7 120g
Grapes 8 120g
Mango 8 120g
Blueberries 9 120g
Banana 12 120g
Figs 16 60g
Raisins 28 60g
Dates 42 60g

So what does all of this mean? If you have been trying to lose weight and you’re working out, not eating sweets, watching alcohol intake etc. but the weight isn’t budging then THIS could be why! Fruits with a Glycemic Load UNDER 10 are “First Choice”, fruits that fall between 10 and 20 on the Glycemic Load scale have a moderate effect on your blood sugar, and anything above 20 causes insulin and blood sugar spikes, AKA Fat Cell Growth! Where are all of the people saying “I’m not diabetic, what does blood sugar and insulin have to do with me?” UMMMMMMM EVERYTHING! We all have insulin and if you’re eating foods that cause insulin spikes you’re harvesting fat cells.

So which fruits should I eat?

Plums, cherries, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, oranges, pears, apples, avocado, papayas, kiwis, cantaloupes, grapes, and peaches. Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries should be a first choice as they are the most fibrous! Meaning they will fill us up in small servings and also help move our bowels (multi-tasking). Be sure to mind your serving sizes and limit your fruit intake to 1 per day.

Think before you consume: mango, watermelon, pomegranates, bananas, pineapple, raisins, prunes, and apricot, as they are all insulin spiking high carb fruits!

Healthy Wishes, T

4th of July Before, During, After

Oh Holiday weekend. We all have such good intentions at the start of a good ol Holiday weekend…Let’s be honest we can say we are only going to have 1 drink or no drink, only eat veggies and chicken at the cook out but we ALL end up going outside of our ground rules mostly because we set RIDICULOUS rules like:

“I’m not going to drink at the cook out this weekend” or “No burger for me, I’ll just have this lettuce and 1/2 a piece of chicken” or “Oh I can’t eat any of this, I just started my diet TODAY.”

http://girlgonehealthy.com/4thofjulybeforeduringafter/And please don’t get me wrong I am in NO WAY saying you should just eat like it’s a buffet all weekend long or drink like it’s college all over again, but what I am saying is there ARE limits and moderation so that means you CAN enjoy yourself – within reason. Choose wisely, have a burger but maybe sans bun? Make it an addition to a nice big green salad drizzled with some balsamic and pepper slices, cucumbers, YUMM. Have a COCKTAIL, you are an adult, this AMERICA, have the drink just don’t have 5 or 6. Like dessert? OK have a little bit just be sure that its just that- A LITTLE.

http://girlgonehealthy.com/4thofjulybeforeduringafter/But what about after? You know MONDAY. I have compiled a few ways to help you make sure that your weekend of fun and small indulgences doesn’t turn into a week long binge fest.

Girl Gone Healthy’s Ways to Get Back on Track

Drink Water: Do this like it’s your J-O-B. You should already be hydrating, and you should already be hydrating with it being summer, but hydrating after derailing helps to flush the system-give you energy-and helps us feel full and avoid non-sustenance eating.

PLAN: PLAN each meal! Don’t allow yourself the chance to continue to slip, set yourself up for success!

Revisit: For those who track/journal revisit a really great week and REPEAT it. Eat the exact same way and reset your body.

Remind: Think of why you started and how far you’ve come…..don’t let all of your hard work go to waste!

MOVE: get your SWEAT on!! That’s right, get off your BOOTY!!! Go burn some calories and then go burn off all of the extra ones you consumed over the Holiday weekend!!

Veggies: Eat some!! They are you’re friend!! Raw veggies are hydrating, filling, and fibrous! They make us full and they help us use the potty, that’s right folks they are multi-taskers!!

Eat at Meal Times ONLY: Stop picking, grazing, and everything in between! Those BLT’s (Bites, Licks, and Tastes) can add up to an entire additional meal!!

Repeat: Put all of this on repeat for TOMORROW and the next day and the next day and the next day…


Have a SAFE, HAPPY, HEALTHY 4th of July Weekend, T

Reese’s Peanut Butter Pie

One thing I think everyone, ok a majority of people, can agree on is Chocolate and Peanut Butter are 2 of the most amazing things ever- and together, well insert Homer Simpson Drool…..

http://girlgonehealthy.com/reeses-peanut-butter-pie/My hubby is probably the biggest Reese’s fan I know so it was a no-brainer when it came to what kind of Birthday Treat I was going to create this year.


And being from Texas, well you know I had to add some LAYERS and they were INCREDIBLE and fairly easy.

http://girlgonehealthy.com/reeses-peanut-butter-pie/Ready for the recipe?!!! Yea you are! Oh and remember this is no way Healthy, Weight Loss Journey, Eat Everyday approved….at all LOL. This is an indulge, enjoy, celebrate in moderation treat.

4 Layer Reese’s Peanut Butter Pie

You’ll need the following-

1 (15.25-ounce) box Dark Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix

1 (8-ounce) package fat free cream cheese

¾ cup creamy peanut butter

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 tablespoon heavy cream or half & half

2 packages sugar free fat free instant chocolate fudge pudding mix ( 1 small ox, 1 large)

3 1/2 cups cold milk ( DO NOT Use Almond Milk, the pudding will not “take”)

1 (16-ounce) container light frozen whipped topping, thawed

Miniature peanut butter cups for garnish


(Recipe adapted from Spicy Southern Kitchen)

**Start by preparing the cake as you normally would and allow it to cool COMPLETELY- set aside. I used an 8×8 pan so it would be nice and thick.**



Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and peanut butter until smooth. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar and heavy cream or half & half whichever you have on hand. Spread this amazing peanut butter layer on top of cake layer.



In a bowl, whisk together pudding mix and milk for 2 minutes. Pour on top of pb cream cheese layer.


Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. When ready to serve, spread thawed light whipped topping on top and finish it off with mini peanut butter cups.


http://girlgonehealthy.com/reeses-peanut-butter-pie/This is AMAZING….

http://girlgonehealthy.com/reeses-peanut-butter-pie/Healthy Wishes, T

Cheesy Chicken Pasta

I receive multiple requests to create Weight Watchers friendly meals that will feed a family, or make several meals out of one dish and as always I’m happy to oblige when I can. What I am about to say next may blow your mind, I might even lose a few followers…. here goes…..

We were never a pasta loving family and I don’t even crave pasta but maybe once or twice a year…… I know, I know some of you are ready to stop reading others are spitting their beverages out crying “WHAT?! You DON’T crave pasta?!!” But it’s true, it’s just not up there with my faves.

Don’t get me wrong I’m not totally immune to having thoughts about delicious carb filled tubes of joy smothered in warm spicy sauce and covered with gooey melted cheesy cheese make their way into my belly that will surely be bloated beyond reason by the second bite, yea I think about it.


http://girlgonehealthy.com/cheesey-chicken-pasta/But I also think about the stomach ache I’m going to have after my rendezvous with pasta, which oddly enough bread doesn’t do that to me, but ANYWAY I spotted a new box o pasta in my grocery adventures and thought I’d give it a whirl and make it Weight Watcher friendly all at the same time!

Meet Barilla Protein Plus

proteinplus-penneIt packs 17g of protein per serving- WOW.

You ready for this quick, easy, and filling recipe?

Girl Gone Healthy’s Cheesey (with an extra “e” in cheesy) Chicken Pasta

– 1 bag of Tyson Grilled and Ready Oven Roasted Diced Chicken Breasts (2 points per serving/6 servings in bag)

– 1 jar of your favorite tomato sauce- I used a spicy tomato, basil (2 points per serving/5 servings per jar)

– 1 box of Barilla Protein Plus Pasta (9 points per serving/ 7 servings in box)

– 1/2 bag Shredded Parmesan Cheese (3 points per serving/ 6 TOTAL in bag but used 1/2= 3 servings)

Pre-heat your oven to 350. Bring a large pot of water to rolling boil, add pasta and cook until desired tenderness- drain and set aside. While pasta is boiling saute/warm up your chicken breasts in a large skillet until heated through out, set aside. Using a large bowl, pour sauce over pasta and begin to combine, add chicken in and continue to mix until pasta and chicken are coated. Pour well mixed pasta and chicken into a non stick 9X13 baking pan, smooth everything down ensuring everything is evenly distributed. Top with cheese, cover pan with foil, and place in pre-heated 350 oven for 15 minutes, remove foil and allow cheese to get golden and bubbly cooking for an additional 3 to 5 minutes depending on oven. Remove from oven and allow to cool, cut into 12 servings.


Total points for entire pan= 94 at 12 generous servings per pan= 8 points per serving

http://girlgonehealthy.com/cheesey-chicken-pasta/This meal was so filling and 1 serving is ABSOLUTELY enough. Be sure to Pin, Share, and Save this super quick, super easy, and super protein filled dish!

http://girlgonehealthy.com/cheesey-chicken-pasta/Healthy Wishes, T

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies

I love a good cookie, I mean honestly who doesn’t love a good cookie?

http://girlgonehealthy.com/peanut-butter-…oconut-cookiesAnd one of my favorite cookies is a peanut butter cookie….. especially a peanut butter and chocolate kind of cookie. As I’m sure you’ve seen before my go to peanut butter cookie recipe is my Flour-Less Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe but a few days ago I decided to kick that recipe up a notch and add some chocolate chips and some coconut and MAN was it a good idea!


Girl Gone Healthy’s Flour-Less Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies

-1 cup of chunky peanut butter (soften in the microwave about 30 seconds)

-1 cup of splenda or organic raw sugarhttp://girlgonehealthy.com/peanut-butter-…oconut-cookies/

-1 large egg

-1 tsp of vanilla extract

-1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

-1/3 cup shredded coconut

In a mixing bowl combine everything but pb and mix using your mixer, everything will be a gorgeous yellow and creamy. Add in pb and continue to mix until nice and thick. Spoon onto baking sheet and place in pre heated 375 oven for around 10 minutes or until cookies are golden and firm on the outside, they should turn out fluffy looking and moist in the center. Allow to cool and devour!

When you open it up and peek inside you see bits of coconut and chocolate and it’s like a little piece of heaven.



So I want to know what your favorite cookie is! Tell me in the comments below and if you leave a recipe I’ll be sure to share it.

Healthy Wishes, T

Tips for A Better Cardio Work Out

Disclaimer: ****This is an informational post brought to you by a partner of emediabuyers.com, the opinions expressed in this post are that of the brand via emediabuyers.com.****

Top tips and suggestions to improve your treadclimber workout
A cardio workout is an essential and very important part of your physical fitness routine and must not be neglected. A cardio workout not only helps you to improve your heart health but also provides several other benefits like improving stamina, burning calories and strengthening your back. One of the best cardio workout machines is a treadclimber which offers 3-in-1 benefits of a treadmill, an elliptical and a stepper. But often, we are not able to avail complete benefits of this machine by making some common mistakes. Thus for your reference, we have come up with a list of the top tips and suggestions to improve your treadclimber workout:

1. Increase the incline
By increasing the incline of the treadclimber or the treadmill, you can reap a lot more benefits than running on a flat angle. Running uphill will send the heart rate up and can also help you to burn a lot more calories. Some other benefits of increasing the incline of the bowflex treadclimber include improved strength of legs, better running form and better speed of spring.

2. Go hands free
Another way to improve your bowflex treadclimber workout is to go hands free. Most cardio equipments have a handrail provided for support and safety but it is better to let your hands go off the rails and move them front and back. By doing so, you will not only be concentrating on your lower body workout but also on the upper body workout.

bowflex-max-trainer3. Practice interval training
Another way to improve upon your bowflex max trainer workout is to practice interval training. Interval training is the training which involves alternate periods of high intensity workout and resting periods. This form of training maximizes your results and helps you to burn more calories in a shorter span of time.

4. Keep the pace up
A lot of us workout on the treadmill or treadclimber continuously for a long period of time but without keeping the pace up. This may help you to burn calories but it is always better to keep the pace up. Challenge your body by increasing the speed and varying the pace every now and then. Use an app to track your performance and see how well you do by increasing the speed.

5. Vary the pace
Another way to make the most of your treadclimber workout is to vary the pace continuously. By varying the pace, you tend to challenge yourself more and improve the overall effects of the workout session.

6. Use the buddy system
Take a buddy along with you next time you head to the gym. Having a buddy keeps the motivation levels up and also helps you to keep going on when you are about to give up. This makes the experience more enjoyable and the time appear less.

7. Be consistent
Another way to improve the workout is to do it regularly and remain consistent. This helps to show results faster and make you used to the experience.


****This is an informational post brought to you by a partner of emediabuyers.com, the opinions expressed in this post are that of the brand via emediabuyers.com.****

Hemp Love

Be still my heart…. Hemp Heart that is!!

Hemp Heart Pack http://girlgonehealthy.com/hemp-love/My friends over at Sweat Pink and Manitoba Harvest sent me these deelish tiny, crunchy, little seeds of goodness to review, with that being said please note that the opinions expressed in this post are mine and do not reflect that of Sweat Pink or Manitoba Harvest….. Ok so on with the non-legal stuff ;-).

What is a Hemp Seed and what do I do with it? Check it out:

New Post Featuring Manitoba Harvest Hemp Seeds http://girlgonehealthy.com/hemp-love/You can sprinkle it on salad, in yogurt, on eggs, in smoothies your possibilities are almost endless! And these little seeds pack quite the healthy punch.

http://girlgonehealthy.com/hemp-love/This pack lasted me quite a while as I ended just using a tablespoon or two in my morning protein smoothies. I usually try to make breakfast my most calorically dense packed out meal because it’s the only one I can control and KNOW I will get everyday on time etc…

This ended up being my breakfast everyday for a week straight!!

1 cup Almond milk, 1 cup cold water, chocolate protein powder, chocolate pb2, Manitoba Harvest Hemp Seeds, and ice- put into blender, blend and DEVOUR.

Hemp Smoothie

If you’re looking to get your Hemp on and need some ideas check out Manitoba Harvest’s Recipe Page.

New Post featuring Manitoba Harvest Hemp Seeds http://girlgonehealthy.com/hemp-love/Healthy Wishes, T

Muscle Up March | Monthly Challenge

The time for sleeveless shirts, tanks, dresses, strapless this and halter that….oh and bathing suits….yes bathing suits….time of year is nearly upon us and that means it’s time to work those ARMS!!! I think Muscle Up March is going to be a super fun Challenge! For those who already lift weights this will be a nice conditioning type Challenge and for those who are just starting out it will whip you right into high gear. We will be working all upper body, and I threw in some squats because I know you love them, so our focus will be triceps, biceps, shoulders, and back.

New Post: Muscle Up March Challenge http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/ Let’s talk about the details of the Challenge, Reps and Sets. I have designed this for ALL levels so if you can do additional then by all means please do but my focus is to always encourage those just starting out.

Reps: Each exercise listed you will be completing 10-12 reps in each set. No matter how many repetitions you do, always use a heavy enough weight so that the last rep is a struggle, but not such a struggle that you compromise good form. AKA lift heavy!!

Sets: If you’re a beginner, or if you’re starting again after a layoff, begin with ONE set of 10 to 12 repetitions, and make sure your last rep feels challenging. You should feel like you have control of the weight but if you did one more rep you may not be able to make it all the way. If you lift on the regular feel free to do 2 to 3 sets of each exercise listed for the day with 10-12 reps in each set, if you need to bump to 15 reps to get that challenge then do so.


Long story short: You’re aiming for 1 set of each exercise listed with 10-12 reps in each set minimum.

So who’s ready to see the Challenge?!!!

Girl Gone Healthy's Muscle Up March Challenge http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/

Here are your move break downs:

Tricep Kick Back: Stand tall, holding dumbbell with your right hand, then step forward about two feet with your left leg and bend forward at the waist. Place your left hand on your left thigh for support. Bend your elbow to bring the weight up to the side of your body?at chest level, palm facing your body?then extend your forearm back behind your body until your arm is straight, but do not lock elbow. Reverse direction, and return dumbbell to front of body. Switch and hold dumbbell with left hand and do 10-12 reps on that side. http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/

Shoulder Fly: Start standing with your feet hip width, knees slightly bent and weight in each hand. Bend elbows about 90 degrees, and raise both arms out to the sides (your arms should resemble a goal post in this position), brace your abs in tight. Maintaining the 90-degree angle with your elbows, bring your arms together in front of your chest, without letting your elbows drop below shoulder level. Open arms back out to sides and then repeat for 10-12 reps. http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/

Weighted Arm Raise: Stand holding dumbbells at your sides, one palm facing in, one palm facing the front of your thigh, feet hip-width apart. Keeping your arms straight and shoulders down, simultaneously raise one weight in front of you and the other out to your side, both to shoulder height. Return to start. That’s one rep. Repeat with opposite arms and continue alternating.


Dumbbell Extension: hold a dumbbell in your hand, extend your arms straight above your head, then bend your elbows so the dumbbell is close to your ear (your elbows pointed to the ceiling). Extend your arms, raising the dumbbell up toward the ceiling. Repeat lowering and raising, for 10-12 reps.


Dumbbell Tricep Extension: Lie face-up on a flat bench, or the floor, with your feet flat on the floor. Grasp a dumbbell in each hand and hold them directly above you with your palms facing inward (neutral grip) and your arms extended. Keeping your upper arms stationary and perpendicular to the bench/floor, bend your elbows to bring the dumbbells toward the top/sides of your head. As your inner elbow joints approach 90-degree angles, pause and then smoothly reverse direction by pressing back to full arm extension. Squeeze your triceps at the top of the movement. 10-12 reps.


Dumbbell Bench Press: On a flat bench, or the floor, grip dumbbells in each hand, palms facing each other.  Press up the dumbbells one arm at a time so that you can hold them in front of you at shoulder width and rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you.  (You can use your thighs to help you get the dumbbells up.)  Bring down the weights slowly to your side as you breathe in.  As you breathe out, push the dumbbells up using your pectoral muscles.  Repeat for 10-12 reps. http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/

Alternate Dumbbell Curl: Hold a dumbbell in both hands. Curl weight to left shoulder, then lower. Curl weight to right shoulder, then lower. Alternate arms for each curl. Do equal reps on each side. To add intensity, stand on one foot during curls alternating feet each time. http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/

Bent Over Rows: With a dumbbell in each hand (palms facing your torso), bend your knees slightly and bring your torso forward by bending at the waist; as you bend make sure to keep your back straight until it is almost parallel to the floor. Tip: Make sure that you keep the head up. The weights should hang directly in front of you as your arms hang perpendicular to the floor and your torso. This is your starting position. While keeping the torso stationary, lift the dumbbells to your side (as you breathe out), keeping the elbows close to the body (do not exert any force with the forearm other than holding the weights). On the top contracted position, squeeze the back muscles and hold for a second. Slowly lower the weight again to the starting position as you inhale. Repeat for 10-12 repetitions. http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/

Overhead Shoulder Press: Hold a dumbbell in each hand at the shoulders with an overhand grip. Thumbs should be on the inside and knuckles facing up. Raise the weights above the head in a controlled motion, ensuring that you do not slam the arms upward and stress the elbow joint. Exhale as you push upward. Return dumbbells to the shoulders and repeat for 10-12 reps. http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/

If you choose to Squat with weights: Start with feet hip-width apart, holding dumbbells on your shoulders with a neutral grip and elbows up. Next, hinge back, keeping the back straight like you’re sitting on an imaginary bench. Lower the body until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor (or deeper, without losing a tight back). Complete the move by driving through the hips as you come back up to standing position.  You may squat without weights if you are feeling sore!! http://girlgonehealthy.com/muscle-up-march-challenge-2/

So who’s EXCITED?!!!! I hope you all enjoy this Challenge!!


Happy Lifting and Healthy Wishes, T


Review | ActivMotion Bar

ActivMotion Bar via http://girlgonehealthy.com/review-activmotion-bar/The awesome peeps over at Fit Approach teamed up with ActivMotion Bar to help them get the word out about their ground breaking weighted work out bar.


The ActivMotion Bar is no ordinary fitness bar. It’s always moving and strengthening your core with every exercise—because it’s filled with rolling steel weights. No other fitness product comes close to creating a multi-sensory workout experience like this. The moment you pick it up you’ll hear the weights move inside and feel them challenging your body. Whether you’re a beginner, a trainer, a pro athlete or anything in between, it’s time to change the way you train, engage mind and muscle, experience an amazing workout and get in shape quicker than ever before. It’s time for the ActivMotion Bar.

I was super excited to be selected to review this new work out tool and when it arrived and I began unpacking it……

Review of ActivMotion Bar via http://girlgonehealthy.com/review-activmotion-bar/And that’s when I noticed the bar was only 6 pounds……

ActivMotionBar Review via http://girlgonehealthy.com/review-activmotion-bar/And I was a little skeptical as to how a 6 pound bar was gonna “work me out”. My package also contained DVD’s with different levels of work out’s along with a link to ActivMotion Bar’s movement library and I felt a little better knowing I could access different ideas.

“So how did you use it Tera?”

Well I’m glad you asked! I ended up using it as a morning/get up and go weighted wake up!

Check it out:

Bicep Bar Curls

ActivMotion Bar via http://girlgonehealthy.com/review-activmotion-bar/Lunge Press

ActivMotion Bar via http://girlgonehealthy.com/review-activmotion-bar/Bent Over Rows

ActivMotion Bar via http://girlgonehealthy.com/review-activmotion-bar/Bench Press

ActivMotion Bar via http://girlgonehealthy.com/review-activmotion-bar/I do 3 sets of 15 reps for each of the moves shown. This quickie work out is PERFECT for the morning and gets the blood flowing, it has actually helped motivate me to stay on plan all day- from eating to errands to work- starting my day off with the ActivMotion Bar has been great!


To learn more about ActivMotion Bar click here —-> https://www.activmotionbar.com/

To get more work out Inspiration and see how others are using their ActivMotion Bars follow  @FitApproach #sweatpink  via Social Media

Healthy Wishes, T

Flab Free February 2015

As Jiggle Free January comes to a close it’s time to prepare for next month’s Challenge- Flab Free February!!

Flab Free February Challenge via http://girlgonehealthy.com/flab-free-february-2015/

But Tera how do I do the moves? I’ve got you covered!

Flab Free February Challenge via http://girlgonehealthy.com/flab-free-february-2015/

The Squat:

  • Squat down until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor. If you don’t go down that far, you’re cheating yourself and doing a fake squat.  Go way down, and you’ll feel it in every muscle in your leg.  This will give you a really strong core along with strong legs and a strong back.
  • Try not to extend your knees past your toes. If you’re doing the squats right, you should be sitting back with your butt out and back straight.
  • Don’t arch your back. The best way to make sure this doesn’t happen is to keep your head up when you squat, and KEEP YOUR ABS tight throughout the whole exercise (that’s right, squats will even work your abs).
  • Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, and point your toes slightly outward.

Scissor Kicks:

  • Lie on the floor with your knees bent and arms resting at your sides. Flatten your lower back onto the floor by drawing your navel in toward your spine. Draw your knees into your chest before extending both legs above your hips.
  • Maintain stability in your core and a flat back as you begin lowering your legs toward the floor. Pause when you feel your back start to rise off the floor.
  • Carefully spread your legs wider than hip-width distance without releasing your abs. Begin the exercise by swinging both legs back in and past your midline, allowing your right leg cross above your left leg.
  • Swing both legs back out to their starting position and repeat with your left leg crossing above your right. Continue until reps are completed.

Lunge Kicks:

  • Stand with your feet together.
  • Take a long stride forward with one foot, pointing your foot and knee in the same direction.
  • Keep your torso upright and your center of gravity directly above your hips.
  • Bend your rear leg until your knee almost touches the ground.
  • Push off your rear foot and bring that leg forward with your knee in a cocked position.
  • Kick at an imaginary target, then cock your knee again.
  • Continue the same movement with your other leg, alternate as such until reps are complete.

Donkey Kicks:

  • Assume start position as shown by kneeling down on all fours.
  • Keeping your right knee bent, slowly lift that leg behind you so your foot raises up toward the ceiling.
  • Return to start position and repeat with left leg, continue to alternate until reps are complete.

The Bridge:

  • Lie down on an exercise mat, on your stomach with your legs straight and together.
  • Lift your upper body and place your elbows on the floor where your shoulders were while lying down.
  • Flex (dorsiflex) your feet so your toes are pushing into the floor.
  • Tighten your entire body and lift yourself up onto your elbows and the tips of your toes.
  • Make sure to keep your body and legs straight.
  • Hold this position for as long as you can without feeling strain in your low back.

– See more at: http://www.fitnessandfreebies.com/exercise/exercises/bridge.html#sthash.Y8kqjuHj.dpuf

  • Lie down on an exercise mat, on your stomach with your legs straight and together.
  • Lift your upper body and place your elbows on the floor where your shoulders were while lying down.
  • Flex (dorsiflex) your feet so your toes are pushing into the floor.
  • Tighten your entire body and lift yourself up onto your elbows and the tips of your toes.
  • Make sure to keep your body and legs straight.
  • Hold this position for as long as you can without feeling strain in your low back.

– See more at: http://www.fitnessandfreebies.com/exercise/exercises/bridge.html#sthash.Y8kqjuHj.dpuf

  • Lying face up on ground with arms to side, knees bent, and heels on ground.
  • Lift hips off the ground until knees, hips, and shoulders are in a straight line
  • Hold 2 -3 seconds, return to start position and repeat for required number of reps.


I shouldn’t have to explain the plank….you guys have been with me through enough Challenges but for those who are new check out: http://girlgonehealthy.com/the-great-plank-debate/

All righty, there you have it!!! Who’s pumped?!!! Comment below with which move(s) you’re most excited to do/try and why!!

Be sure to share this with your Friends and Family so everyone can have a Flab Free February!!! #FlabFreeGGH for social media use!!


Instagram: @girlgonehealthy

Twitter: @girlgonehealthy

Healthy Wishes, T

WORK OUT | Blizzard Boot Camp

In case you haven’t received the memo and you live in the North East….. it’s going to SNOW!!!!

Blizzard Boot Camp via Girl Gone Healthy http://girlgonehealthy.com/work-out-blizzard-boot-camp/

It’s not suggested to drive due to the poor visibility and awful road conditions so why not work out at home?!! I’ve created this quick and easy Boot Camp that can be repeated through out your day to keep that blood flowing and the boredom, which leads to snacking, at bay! Besides the more times you do it the less it matters how much wine you’ve consumed…. I kid, I kid,….maybe.

Blizzard Boot Camp via Girl Gone Healthy http://girlgonehealthy.com/work-out-blizzard-boot-camp/Stay safe, warm, and sweaty ;-).

Healthy Wishes, T