i can’t say no to Starbucks

It’s been known that Starbucks doesn’t always have the healthiest drinks in the world. However, it’s also known that telling a college girl she shouldn’t drink Starbucks isn’t the most realistic request. Especially, when they’re all over campus! So I’ve gathered some lower calorie options that you can pick from Starbucks menu and hopefully they make you feel “less guilty” when you need your morning, afternoon, and evening pick me up…

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Now if you’re in the Lexington Area and want to try something other than Starbucks (& support local businesses), here are some of my favorite local coffee shops! (Click on titles for directions) 

Daily Offering Coffee Roastery 

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A Cup of Commonwealth 

Coffea

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Common Grounds

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College is a time to enjoy life and challenge yourself in ways that you may not have the 806e976aaf4d5d0200a1486a557fa246opportunity to do later on. With that being said, grab a few girlfriends and sign up for a
half marathon in a city near you! Yes, 13.1 miles sounds like a lot of miles to run. BUT I know that you can do it, and you’re gonna be so proud of yourself when you cross the finish line! Don’t know where to start? Let me help.

1. Recruit some friends.

Misery loves company. I’m just kidding!! This would be a fun thing to do with your best friend or just a group of your friends who are willing to take on this challenge with you!

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2. Where do you want to train?

A gym and a treadmill works just find, but if the weather is nice, I definitely recommend running outside since the half marathon will take place outside and it’d help to get use to running on pavement/hills. Also, everyone could use a little more vitamin D, right?

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3. Good Running Shoes

If you don’t have a good pair of running shoes, this may be the best excuse to buy a new pair that’ll support your feet! The last thing you want is to be uncomfortable or in pain after only the third or fourth mile! Sometimes you can find running shoes on sale during the season changes, since they’re getting in their new shipment! ASICS are my personal fave! They’re not always the cutest – but they get the job done!

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4. A Running Plan

The internet is FILLED with running plans for 5k’s, half marathons, full marathons, you  name it! Here’s one that I really liked!

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5. Cute Workout Clothes

Okay, so maybe this isn’t really a necessity for running a half marathon, but it definitely doesn’t hurt anything! Stop by a Lulu Lemon or TJ Maxx and find some workout clothes that you’d feel comfortable running in! This may be just the motivation for you to get goin’! Hey, it’s an excuse to buy new clothes, right?

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6. You’re ready to go! Good luck!

Mount Desert Island Marathon:

 

 

smoothie anyone?

With all the different food options on campus and having a limited budget for food, it may be hard to consume the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables everyday. (Which based on a 2000 calorie diet is about 2.5 cup equivalents of vegetables per day and 2 cup equivalents of fruit per day- 2015 dietary guidelines).

Smoothies are a great way for you to get these servings in, and they’re delicious! You really can’t go wrong when making them either. Here are a few of my favorites!

(I’m in love with my fruit ninja blender and highly recommend you asking for one for your birthday or Christmas, but a blender will do the job too!)

1. STRAWBERRY BANANA

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  • 12small ripe banana (Frozen or raw)
  • 12cup strawberry (Frozen or raw)
  • 12cup milk (nonfat, unsweetened almond milk – my fave, coconut milk, soy milk)
  • 12cup nonfat greek yogurt (Plain)
  • 2  teaspoons cinnamon (or honey)
  • ice cubes (if you’re fruit isn’t frozen)

Mix it all together and you have a delicious smoothie! Just a few side notes about making smoothies: Sometimes buying frozen fruit can be expensive, so it’d also be really easy to just by fresh fruit and then cut it and put it in the freezer. I don’t have an ice maker in my home, so I have to use frozen fruit to give it that cold smoothie effect. Some places that I like to buy my frozen fruit for a decent price is Aldi and Trader Joes. (Make sure to look for the fruit with no added sugars. The only ingredients should be the fruit and maybe a natural preservative of some sort).

2. VERY BERRY (+ SOME GREENS)

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3. PEANUT BUTTER BANANA

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  • 1 frozen banana
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 12cup milk (nonfat, unsweetened almond milk – my fave, coconut milk, soy milk)
  • 12cup nonfat greek yogurt (Plain)
  • Ice if your fruit isn’t frozen

Between the banana, cocoa, and peanut butter, this is a great recipe when you’re crazing something sweet! You can always add PB2 instead of peanut butter and it works just as well!

4. APPLE SPINACH SMOOTHIE

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  • 2 apples of your choice cored and cut into chunks (I like Gala apples, and I keep the skin on to add some fiber!)
  • 1/2 banana
  • a large handful of fresh spinach
  • 1/2 cup of kale
  • 12cup milk (nonfat, unsweetened almond milk – my fave, coconut milk, soy milk)
  • 12cup nonfat greek yogurt (Plain)
  • Ice if your fruit isn’t frozen
  • 2 tsps of cinnamon or honey

Don’t let the green freak you out. It’s delicious and the apple makes it really sweet!

snacks on-the-go

Class schedules in college can sometimes be all over the place. You might have class at 8am and have it all the way up until 4:00 in the afternoon! Finding time to eat meals that can give you energy to get through the day might be kind of hard. Also, you might realize that you’re spending way more money on meals and snacks from places on campus than you initially wanted to (& most times these options aren’t the healthiest). Here are some snack ideas you can prepare ahead of time or grab on your way out the door in the morning & hopefully they can keep you energized throughout the day!

1. Almonds

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Almonds contain healthy fats, about 6g of protein per ounce, high in fiber, and can help curb you appetite when you’re feeling hungry. Dark chocolate almonds are also a delicious option if you don’t like regular almonds.

2. Applesauce

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Applesauce can make for a great snack, and it’d be easy to put in your backpack. However, some of the applesauce brands (like the one pictured above) can be filled with a lot of added sugar, which you should consume a minimum amount of per day. BUT Every once in a while won’t kill ya’, and you can buy organic apple sauce that contains less calories and a less amount of sugar. Apples make for a great snack, so whether you grab applesauce or an apple as you’re running out the door, either way you’ll be getting some Vitamin C (& maybe some fiber if you eat the skin).

3. Hardboiled eggs

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Hardboiled eggs are a great snack because they have about 6g of protein per egg. Obviously, you wouldn’t want to keep these in your backpack all day (& probably wouldn’t want to eat them in a confined classroom where everyone could smell them), but grabbing them in the morning or eating them on the way to class would be a great option!

4. Fruit

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Fruit is a great option for a snack because you’d just have to chop a few up and put them in a tupperware to eat on throughout the day. I had a friend who would bring a container full of chopped strawberries and a banana to class every other day, and it always looked so yummy! This is easy & its a sweet and healthy snack option compared to grabbing your favorite frappuccino or breakfast bar thats full of added sugar!

5. Celery and Peanut Butter

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Celery & Peanut Butter is a classic snack. I’m sure your mom made this for you when you were little, and put raisins on it and called it “Ants on a Log”. But hey, you’re never too old to pack this as a snack, and its a way to incorporate a vegetable into your day and some protein from the peanut butter!

6. Carrot sticks with Lite Ranch

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7. Trail Mix

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Trail Mix is a great option because they’re full of protein and vitamins. Nuts always make a for a great snack, however, I would say to portion out the serving size and put it in a ziplock bag. Although nuts contain the “good” kind of fat, a lot of calories also come from it. So portion size is key. 

8. Pretzels

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9. Tuna Packets

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Tuna may be a food that some people are completely and totally turned off to & that’s okay! (This snack probably isn’t a good option for you) But for those of you who LOVE tuna (like I do), Tuna makes for a great snack due to the fact that it’s packed with protein, which will help make you feel full longer. A 2.6 oz pouch from StarKist contains 17g of protein!!! If plain tuna in water doesn’t sound very good to you, try some of the pouches that make more of a tuna salad. SunKist has a meal kit that even comes with a few crackers!

10. Oatmeal Energy Bites (No-bake)

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This delicious snack does take a little preparation, BUT once you’ve made them, you can put them in a Ziploc bag and eat them throughout the week! Heres the recipe:

Ingredients:
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup almond butter (or substitute peanut butter)
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/3 cup raw honey
1/4 cup ground flaxseed

In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together. Roll out teaspoon sized balls and place on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Freeze until set about one hour. Enjoy and keep leftovers in a Ziploc bag in fridge or freezer. Makes about 20-24 energy bites. Some Add-ins could be: raisins, dried cranberries, pumpkin, and dried cherries.

Recipe and pictures by Lina for Hip2Save. 

 

 

meals in a cupcake pan

One of the main talents of college students is their creativity. When it comes to meals, students don’t really have time to make super fancy steak dinners with homemade mashed potatoes. It just doesn’t happen. So, coming up with quick and easy ways to cook meals is key. One of my favorite things in my kitchen is my cupcake pan! I needed one to actually make cupcakes one time for some friends, but then after looking at my Pinterest page, I realized I could do so many more things with it!! Here are some of my favorite ways to make creative meals with a cupcake pan:

1. Chicken Pot Pies

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    Aren’t these so cute?  (Picture by princesspinkygirl.com)

    Campbell’s Creamy Herb & Garlic Soup (14.5 oz small box)

  • 2 packages Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
  • Frozen Vegetables, thawed
  • 1 Cup of Chicken cut into small pieces
  • 3-inch round cookie cutter
  • Cupcake pan

How to:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Lay the crescent roll flat and cut out 12 rounds
  3. Press them in the cupcake pan along the bottom and up the sides
  4. In a bowl mix the soup, thawed vegetables and cut up chicken
  5. Spoon the filling mix into the cups – be careful not Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 1.56.41 AMto overfill – it will bubble up while cooking
  6. Using a pizza cutter, cut strips of crescent dough to cover the top of the cups – I did 2 across each way – so four strips total per cup.
  7. Bake about 18 minutes – until top and sides are golden brown. If the top gets too brown, cover it with foil until the bottom is cooked. I used a knife to peek along the side of the cup to check to see how cooked the sides were.
  8. Let cool and then use a knife to loosen and lift out of cups

Recipe by: princesspinkgirl.com

 

2. Egg Muffins

  • Eggs or egg beaters (beaters would make this even easier!)
  • Muffin/cupcake pan
  • Veggies/mix-ins of your choice (I like adding chicken sausage!)

How to:

  1. Pour egg beaters (or beaten eggs) into greased muffin pan – fill 1/2 way
  2. Add toppings directly into eggs
  3. Bake for 375-degrees for 30 minutes
  4. When on the go or in a hurry, put a few of them in the microwave for about 45 seconds and you’re ready to go!
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(Picture and recipe by Brit Morin at http://www.brit.co)

3. Meatloaf

  • Favorite Meatloaf recipe
  • bbq sauce
  • salt & pepper
  • cheese (cheddar works great!)

How to:

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(Picture and recipe by ilovetocool.org/meatloaf-cupcakes/

  1. Spray your muffin tin with cooking spray.
  2. Place in a handful of prepared meatloaf into each muffin tin.
  3. Press your thumb into each meatloaf ball, making a space for toppings.
  4. Squirt a dollop of bbq sauce into the space and salt and pepper.
  5. Bake in a pre-heated 375* oven for 30 minutes or until cooked through (160F).
  6. Add your favorite cheese and bake for another 5 or so minutes.

Side note: You could even make mashed potatoes and add it as a topping to the meatloaf. (The icing on the cake!)

 

stress free (is that even a thing?)

Being a college student is hard. You constantly have homework you have to turn in, tests to prepare for weeks in advance (or the night before), friends and boyfriends, sororities, extra curricular activities…the list goes on. If I were to ask you to describe college in one word, I bet a lot of you would say   s t r e s s f u l.  Am I right? I’m sure most of you have ways that you like to deal with the stress that’s in your life, but if you feel like they aren’t the healthiest ways or the most efficient ways, I have a few ideas.

 

1. Are you getting enough sleep?

According to the American Psychological Association, sleep is so crucial that even slight sleep deprivation or poor sleep can affect memory, judgment and mood. A survey showed that when adults feel that they didn’t get enough sleep, 45% of them feel more stressed. A ton of research has been done on this subject, and it all shows that getting an adequate amount of sleep (7-9 hours) can help with your stress and anxiety levels!

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2. Exercise

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America states the following:

“Scientists have found that regular participation in aerobic exercise has been shown to decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem. Even five minutes of aerobic exercise can stimulate anti-anxiety effects…Exercise and other physical activity produce endorphins—chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers—and also improve the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces stress.”

If it’s nice outside, go for a walk or a jog, or practice yoga (more on yoga here), or go to your school’s student gym with a friend – even if it’s only for 30 minutes! Hopefully you should feel your stress levels start to decrease, and your endorphin levels INCREASE.

3. What kinds of food are you eating?

The Physicians Committee have said that “high-fat foods are usually the worst possible choices because they can make us feel lethargic and less able to deal with stress”. They also increase our blood pressure and cholesterol levels, which can put us at risk for heart disease later on. Here are some foods they recommend for helping fight stress:

  • Baked Sweet Potatoes
  • Sautéed Vegetables over rice
  • Carrots
  • Citrus Fruits
  • Complex carbohydrates and fiber filled foods (Like vegetables, grains, pasta, and beans!)

Foods to avoid:

  • Sugary foods (candy, soft drinks, etc.)
  • High fat foods (like meat or cheese)
  • Baked Goods
  • Simple carbohydrates (these give us the “crash” affect)
  • Caffeine

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4. Do something you ENJOY.

Many times in college, you’re constantly busy with so many different things, that you might not take the time to do something that you thoroughly enjoy. This could be hiking, or reading a good book, going to the movie theatre, having a girls night, or even just going to the mall…Whatever it is – DO IT. By doing something that makes you happy – you’ll probably forget about the things that were stressing you out (even if it’s only for a little while). Make time for this. You deserve it! 0410-youcan-hiking-0008.jpg

namaste in bed

Instead of pushing snooze on the alarm clock or taking your routine afternoon nap after class, a great option to exercise your body and relax at the same time is trying out some yoga! I absolutely love yoga for so many reasons. For me, it helps a lot with stress and tension in my body. It truly makes me feel stronger each time I practice it! Here are some other reasons why yoga is so wonderful!

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Also, TJ Maxx and Target sell some pretty cute yoga mats, so you and a friend should go pick out a cute mat and start incorporating a little yoga into your day! You’ll love the difference it makes in your stress level and in your flexibility/strength. Recently, I did a 30 day yoga challenge and I LOVED it. I started out as a beginner, so it really helped teach me some of the basic yoga poses, and the instructor, Erin Motz, is a wonderful teacher. Try it out! Here’s the first day of the yoga challenge. You can find all the videos on youtube under the youtube channel Do You Yoga. I hope you love it as much as I do!

 

easy dinner ideas

Sometimes making dinner isn’t the easiest – and not very fun at times – especially when you have that assignment due at midnight that you haven’t even started on yet. SO here are some quick and delicious dinners that don’t take very much preparation at all!

First off, you’ll probably hear me say this a million times, but the crockpot is my jam. I seriously love it. If you can just wake up 10 minutes earlier in the morning and throw a few ingredients in the crockpot, you can leave them in there all day, and it’ll be done by the time you’re ready to eat dinner! Here is one of my personal favorites from one of my favorite blogs called Family Fresh Meals  :

DELICIOUS BBQ CHICKEN

  • 2 lbs boneless chicken breasts The-Best-Crockpot-BBQ-Chicken-FamilyFreshMeals.com-
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce
  • 1/4 cup Italian Dressing (I like to use Lite!)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • salt to taste
  1. Season chicken breast lightly ( a small pinch per breast) with some sea salt and place in your crockpot.
  2. In a mixing bowl combine BBQ sauce, Italian dressing, brown sugar and Worcestershire sauce. Stir until well combined.
  3. Pour over chicken, cover and cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours
  4. Once time is up, you can serve the breast whole, or shred with 2 forks. If shredding, recover and let cook in sauce for about 10-15 more minutes to soak up all that delish flavor.
  5. Serve on buns, over rice, in wraps, on a salad or eat a plateful as is!

 

Next, my roommate and I make this really random meal sometimes that we love and can prepare fairly quickly! My roommate calls it a “Turkey Burger” (even though it’s not really like a burger), and I just call in my “Random Turkey Meal”. You can eat this by itself, or you can eat it in a tortilla, with some tortilla ships, in lettuce wraps – you name it!

RANDOM TURKEY MEAL 

  • 1 lb. ground turkey (I get the 93% lean, 7% fat organic turkey)
  • Taco Seasoning (I like the reduced sodium kind!)
  • 1 can of black beans
  • 1 frozen package of corn (or can)
  • pinch of Cheese to add after prepared
  1. In a skillet, cook the ground turkey until it’s no longer pink.
  2. Add in Taco seasoning (Follow directions on package for adding to meat).
  3. Drain black beans and rinse. (this helps decrease the amount of sodium)
  4. Fill up a pot about half full with water and add black beans.
  5. Cook on medium heat.
  6. Do the same steps (2-4) with your canned corn. If frozen corn, follow directions on package.
  7. Once ground turkey is done cooking, place temperature on a simmer while beans and corn cook.
  8. Once corn and beans are cooked, add these to the ground turkey in skillet, and mix ingredients together.
  9. Eat it by itself, on any kind of wrap, make some nachos, or place in a tupperware to eat on the rest of the week!

 

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Now we all know that breakfast for dinner is one of the most delicious and EASIEST meals. Maybe even try mixing it up with some different recipes, like banana pancakes or a new smoothie you haven’t made before!

BREAKFAST FOR DINNER – yes please. 

This could consist of many things… but here are some of my faves!

  • Eggs (scrambled, poached, over easy..)
  • Chicken Sausage (Better option instead of pork sausage!)
  • Turkey Bacon (Also a better option than pork!)
  • Whole Grain toast, an english muffin, or sprouted bread
  • Fluffy Banana Pancakes (Click here for the recipe!)
  • Delicious smoothie with protein (Click here for a lot of different flavors!)

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about me

Hi Ladies! My name is Heather, and I’m an aspiring Registered Dietitian in Lexington, Kentucky. I have been in love with nutrition and wellness for as long as I can remember, and this love is what motivated me to get a Bachelor of Science in Dietetics. To obtain the pretty little “RD” after my name, I have to complete a dietetic internship and take a fun exam after I complete the internship. Currently, I am waiting to find out about my hopeful acceptance into Western Kentucky’s internship program, and I will know very soon! (So I’ll keep you posted!). I’m a lover of all things food, fitness, and fun, so I truly hope that this blog is interesting and relevant to your life as a female college student, and if you’re ever in Lexington, lets get coffee!  Thanks for stopping by The Female College Student!IMG_5732