Why I Love Collagen So Much

Collagen is definitely one of those wellness buzzwords that’s making the rounds right now, especially in the blog world. But, contrary to the many “magical” supplements on the market that claim to change your life, collagen peptides are one of my tried-and-true staples that have actually given me real, tangible results! So, I wanted to write a post for those of you who may be interested in adding collagen to your diet, along with some tips for how I include it in my daily routine. 

But first things first: What exactly is collagen? And what the heck are collagen peptides?

Collagen is basically the “glue” that holds our body together. It’s a key protein (30% of the proteins in our body are collagen-based) that ensures the flexibility and elasticity of our connective tissue, including skin, bones, and ligaments. As we age, we naturally begin to produce less collagen, making supplementation important. Some of the side effects of lower collagen production include thinner skin (aka wrinkles), fragile bones, and a general loss of muscle mass.

Collagen peptides are basically a much smaller and more easily digestible form of the protein. They are quickly absorbed and act as the building blocks for our bodily tissues. Some benefits of collagen peptide supplementation include stronger hair, skin and nails, a healthier gut, and cellulite prevention. Ok, well, the verdicts out on that one, but I like to hope it helps! 🙂 

So, what benefits have I seen since I started taking collagen peptides a couple of years ago? Well, I am happy to report that I have seen an improvement in my digestion and overall appearance of my skin. I’m sure Entyvio and Beautycounter help too, but things are better on both fronts. All I know is that I look back at photos of myself in my early 30s and think my skin looks so much better now! My hair and nails also feel stronger, much healthier, and less prone to breakage. Plus, the extra protein source in my diet doesn’t hurt, especially as someone who lives an active lifestyle.

Premium Anti-Aging Marine Collagen Powder 17.6 Oz | Wild-Caught Hydrolyzed Fish Collagen Peptides | Type 1 & 3 Collagen Protein Supplement | Amino Acids for Skin, Hair, Nails | Paleo Friendly, Non-GMO

I use a marine-based collagen (pictured above) because I had a beef sensitivity show up on a food test and a lot of collagen products are made from beef. Marine is sometimes less likely to trigger food sensitivities or destroy the gut lining like some of the crazy chemical-laden protein powders on the market. This particular brand is really affordable compared to many others on the market, and you can Amazon Prime it right to your house. I actually have it on a subscription to come every other month, so it’s even cheaper! 

Collagen is super easy to mix – in both hot and cold foods as well as liquids – it’s a staple in my morning iced coffee! To get my iced coffee perfect, I typically add half to one full scoop (10g) of collagen. (You could totally add more/less depending on your personal preferences.) I’ll often add a scoop of collagen AND a scoop of protein powder into my iced coffee, and they mix right in, no problem. Here’s a quick tutorial about how I get it to all mix together without any clumps as well as a few of the other supplements I like to add and tools I like to use. I know that some of you may be skeptical about adding collagen peptides to your morning cup of joe, but trust me when I say you can’t taste it! Another quick tip for mixing collagen into cold liquids: Just mix it with a little warm water first (a watery gel will form) and then mix that with your cold liquid. 

Collagen peptides also work great in all kinds of recipes. Try it in my Almond Butter Collagen Cookies, Banana Flax Protein Cookies, or Meal Prep Breakfast Cookies as a way to get in an extra dose of gut-healing, skin-boosting protein through a healthy, fun treat!

Question of the Day

Have you tried collagen? If so, how do you like to use it?

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What I Ate Sunday Funday

Hi, guys! Happy Monday to you!

I’m still smiling from the weekend! 🙂 It was, for sure, an awesome one, especially since Sunday turned into a bit of a “Sunday Funday” with some impromptu adult beverages while watching the CrossFit Regionals during nap time. I mean, hey, Mal and I already completed all of our household responsibilities for the weekend (i.e. groceries, laundry, cleaning), so we figured we might as well enjoy ourselves! 🙂 Additionally, in this blog post, I want to show you guys how I balance my splurges via “what I ate in a day.” Read on for some tips and tricks!

I typically plan my meals and snacks via MyFitnessPal the night before based on what we have in the fridge ready to go. I knew we had some leftover shredded chicken and guacamole that needed to be used up, so I paired them with some frozen cauliflower stir fry from Trader Joe’s. It took less than 5 minutes to whip up this meal!

When Mal woke up, he realized he was out of iced coffee, so he ran to Dunkin Donuts and came back with treats for Quinn and me. I obviously couldn’t turn down a chocolate munchkin, so I made a quick adjustment to my macros (cut carbs) to account for it.

After breakfast, we took the boys to Bare Cove Park for some exercise. Quinn rode his bike while Murphy ping-ponged like a lunatic all over the path. He was SO EXCITED!

It was such a beautiful day! I’m so glad we decided to visit the park. Mal and I even said we should make it a regular part of our weekends again!

Mid-walk, Quinn’s legs got a tired, so we took a break to rest and snap some family photos. How cute are these two?

Photo below by Quinn! 🙂

We actually ended up spending quite awhile at the park (Murphy was soooo exhausted by the end), so when we returned home, we were all ready for lunch.

On the menu for me: Arugula with roasted chicken breast, shredded Brussels sprouts, pine nuts, and blue cheese crumbled. Mmm!

After lunch, Quinn went down for his nap. Mal and I finished up a few chores around the house and then sat down to watch Regionals. Our viewing “party” turned into an actual happy hour celebration complete with drinks and snacks!

As for macro-tracking, I counted the wine, guacamole, and cheese on my plate, but just winged it with the veggies. I don’t worry about getting too many nutrients! 🙂 FYI: After enjoying a munchkin (and impromptu wine), I decided to nix some rice crackers and hummus from my afternoon snack to balance out the carbs, which was a quick and easy adjustment.

Dinner was pork loin with roasted carrots and arugula topped with (more) blue cheese. I’m on a serious blue cheese kick lately!

Dessert was chocolate chips mixed with sunflower seeds, which is quite the delicious sweet + salty flavor combination!

Question of the Day

CrossFit peeps: Did you watch Regionals? 

How was your Sunday Funday? 

Do you want to see more info/tips about tracking macros on CNC?

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A Typical Yet Awesome Saturday

Hi, friends!

I hope you had a wonderful weekend! Ours was awesome all around! So much, in fact, I broke up my recap into two separate blog posts because I just had so much to say about our weekend. Shall we get to it? Yes? YES?! Ok, here we go with a typical yet awesome Saturday recap!

Saturday morning started like a lot of them with a fun partner workout at CrossFit.

Mal and I teamed up for the workout… and, whoa, it was a good one. The first half (bike + Burpees) was brutal. I don’t think I could have done more than 5 rounds, so I’m glad that’s all that was prescribed. The second half wasn’t as bad, but the Box Step-Overs with a 50-pound sandbag were no joke! My legs were Jello by the end!

After CrossFit, we ran a few errands, which included a trip to the dump and a pit-stop at Rosa Farms for some smoothies. Back at home, we showered up and got our lives (mostly) organized for the upcoming week.

After lunch, Quinn went down for his nap, and I headed out to Trader Joe’s to grab just a few groceries for the week. I “shopped” from our freezer and pantry when I meal planned this week, so we only needed a few things.

When Quinn woke up from his name, we headed to Derby Street to run a few more errands, including getting a fresh hair cut for Quinn.

And new sunglasses for Mal, which were actually an early birthday present! 🙂

After our adventures at Derby Street, we drove home to meet our babysitter. Mal and I had plans with friends, so we quickly got ready and then headed out for the evening.

Our first stop was Rivershed for dinner. It was super busy, so by the time we got a table, we were more than ready to eat and ordered a bunch of appetizers for the table. Highlights were the Crispy Brussels Sprouts and BBQ Poutine.

Crispy Brussels Sprouts with lemon-mayo, sunflower seeds, bacon bits, and pickled onion

BBQ Poutine fries with smoked brisket, cheese curds, gravy scallions, bacon bits, and a sunny side egg on top

I was already obsessed with the Brussels sprouts, but now the Poutine is a new favorite. Holy yum!

After dinner, our group met up with some more friends at Quan’s Kitchen for Tattoo Cowboy, a local country cover band. Mal and I saw them play last summer and had such a blast, we wanted to check them out again.

It was definitely a fun night! Pupu with PQ!

It was just about midnight when we got home. We said goodbye to our babysitter and then headed up to bed to find a tiny someone snuggled up in our bed. He was so darn cute, we let him sleep there for the night.

What a fun Saturday! It was definitely one of the best I’ve had!

Question of the Day

How was your Saturday? Any fun highlights to share? 

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281 – Half Size Me Community Weekly Webinar 281

Click here to download the webinar recording for Webinar #281Topics covered: Testosterone and impact on weight loss Getting testosterone levels checked How to find maintenance calories What to do if you are eating less than your prescribed Weight Watchers calories

To access this post, you must purchase HSM Community Premium Monthly Membership.

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All About OPEX, Tips for Getting More Protein & Favorite Sports Bras

Hi, guys! Happy Sunday!

I’m kicking off the week with the next edition of my Instagram Live series. If you missed the video on Thursday/Friday, here it is for your viewing pleasure! 🙂

In this episode, I chat about:

  • OPEX – why I started and how’s it going
  • Tips for getting more protein in you diet
  • When my next book is coming out
  • Why I’m not doing Orangetheory anymore
  • My favorite sports bras (Juno + Uplift)

If you have questions for my next Instagram Live, please leave a comment below or email me at tina@carrotsncake.com!

The post All About OPEX, Tips for Getting More Protein & Favorite Sports Bras appeared first on Carrots 'N' Cake.

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