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Cookie Dough Protein Balls

Posted on November 04, 2016 by

cookie dough protein ballsEnjoy your cookie dough again!

 

Ingredients

2 scoops vanilla protein powder (Leaner Living)

½ cup almond meal

1/4 tsp salt

½ cup almond or peanut butter

1 tsp vanilla

¼ cup mini chocolate chips

1 Tbls almond milk

 

Directions

  1. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Stir to blend.
  2. Add canned almond butter & vanilla. Stir to blend.
  3. Add chocolate chips and almond milk. Stir to blend
  4. Form into small (walnut-sized) balls by rolling in palms of your hands.
  5. Place on plate or tray and chill for 30 minutes until more firm.
  6. Enjoy!

 

 

Makes 12 balls

 

Nutrition Facts: (each ball)

Calories 110

Total Fat 9g

Total Carbohydrates 6.5g

Dietary Fiber 1.5g

Protein 5g

 

Print Recipe: Cookie Dough Protein Balls

Sensational & Simple Baked Chicken

Posted on October 28, 2016 by

Only 5 ingredients!

Only 5 ingredients!

Only 5 ingredients!

 

Ingredients

4 boneless-skinless chicken breast halves

¼ cup butter

1 tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

½ tsp tarragon

 

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt butter and stir together with salt & pepper.
  3. Arrange chicken in baking dish.
  4. Brush each piece with butter until thoroughly coated. Pour excess over the chicken.
  5. Sprinkle with tarragon.
  6. Bake 30-35 minutes or until juices run clear.

 

 

Serves 4

 

Nutrition Facts: (each ball)

Calories 227

Total Fat 14g

Total Carbohydrates 0g

Dietary Fiber 0g

Protein 34g

 

Print Recipe: Sensational Simple Baked Chicken

Pumpkin Spice Protein Balls

Posted on October 21, 2016 by

These can be flattened a bit as cookies too~

A seasonal treat!

A seasonal treat!

 

Ingredients

2 scoops vanilla protein powder (Leaner Living)

¼ cup pumpkin seeds

¼ cup rolled oats

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp pumpkin pie spice

½ cup canned pumpkin

1 tsp sugar-free maple syrup

 

Directions

  1. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Stir to blend.
  2. Add canned pumpkin and syrup. Stir to blend.
  3. Form small (walnut-sized) balls by rolling in in your palms.
  4. Place on plate or tray and chill for 30 minutes until more firm.
  5. Enjoy!

 

Makes 12 balls

Nutrition Facts: (each ball)

Calories 40

Total Fat 2g

Total Carbohydrates 3.5g

Dietary Fiber 1g

Protein 3.5g

 

Print Recipe: Pumpkin Pie Protein Balls

Take a Walk…

Posted on October 12, 2016 by

fall pathFall is a beautiful time of year.  The temperature is more conducive to outside recreation and there are  many festive activities to partake in. Every week-end in Hampton Roads there are festivals, races, sporting events, and more happenings for the whole family to enjoy. Take advantage of the weather and weekly activities to fit in exercise (remember the goal is 10,000 steps a day!).
The Sportsplex in Yorktown is the perfect place to run/walk during baseball and soccer season.  It’s safe, scenic, and convenient.  Even if your child isn’t involved in a sport, you can still utilize the Sportsplex.  At a track, football, or other sporting event, walk as much as possible and make sure to bring healthy snack along!

Fall festivals abound in October and throughout the fall. These are perfect places to obtain 10,000 steps. Bring the kids to the Hunt Club Farm Harvest Fair in Virginia Beach for a pumpkin patch, carnival rides, hayrides, and vendors.  Check out the Harvest Faire at Endive plantation in Newport News. Also, the Poquoson Seafood Festival in October is a fun event to walk around and fill up on protein (nothing battered or fried!).

A walk in the park can mean weight loss at the scale!

A walk in the park can mean weight loss at the scale!

If you’re a fan of Halloween, attend the Haunted Mansion in Norfolk.  Newport News has The Night of the Living Museum, appropriate for the entire family.  Take the family to ZooBoo at the Virginia Zoo.  Or, roam through the Halloween Pirate Fest in Virginia Beach.  Make sure to wear your FitBit and keep track of all the steps you’re accumulating.

There are races galore to attend.  Being able to run is NOT a pre-requisite.  These events are fun for the whole family.  Virginia Beach has a Halloween Monster Dash at the end of October. The Tuff Enuf Challenge is a 5K obstacle course in Newport News on October 29th.  The obstacle course includes tires, ropes, tunnels, and water.  Oh, and zombies will chase you during the course!

Last but not least, Howl-o-Scream at Busch Gardens has started and lasts through October.  If you go before 5:00pm there’s no need to worry about scary creatures jumping out at you.  The park will provide picturesque fall decorations and great exercise, including steep hills.  If you go after 6pm be prepared to run from the chain saw wielding zombies!

Just remember that every step counts!  You must move your body to be healthy.  Strive for 10,000 steps a day.  If you need some motivation and extra help, sign up with one of our highly trained personal trainers.  Or, check out our fun fitness classes.  Remember you only have one life to live.  Make it a healthy one.

Protein Pumpkin Squares

Posted on September 23, 2016 by

0If you missed our event on Monday – make these at home & enjoy this tasty snack!

Ingredients:

1/4 cup ground flax seed or almond meal

2 Tbsp Chia seeds

1/2 Tbsp of ground cinnamon

3 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

1/4 cup unsweetened almond or cashew milk

1/4 cup Splenda

4 scoops vanilla protein powder* (about 1 1/3 cup)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 can (15 oz) pumpkin puree

 

*We used Leaner Living – Vanilla Ice Cream

 

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Add all the ingredients to a mixing bowl and combine well.
Grease an 8×10″ baking dish and pour the entire mixture and spread out in pan and bake for 30 minutes. Allow to cool before cutting.
Recipe makes 24 Squares.

Nutrition Per Pumpkin Square:

Calories 45

Fat 2g

Protein 3.25g

Carbohydrates 3.5g

Fiber 2g

 

Bacon and Mushroom Smothered Chicken Breasts

Posted on September 16, 2016 by

Genuine comfort food – without the carbs!

A warm & comforting dish anytime of the year!

A warm & comforting dish anytime of the year!

Ingredients

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 Tbls vegetable oil

2 tsp Italian seasoning

Salt & Pepper

Sauce

6 oz sliced white mushrooms

6 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled

2 cups half & half

Fresh thyme, snipped

 

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add vegetable oil to skillet and place over medium-high heat.
  3. Wash chicken breasts and pat dry with paper towel.
  4. Sprinkle each chicken breast with Italian seasoning and place in hot oil.
  5. Cook for 5 minutes on each side or until lightly browned.
  6. Spray 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray.
  7. Remove chicken from skillet and place in baking dish. (Leave skillet over heat)
  8. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until juices run clear.
  9. While chicken is baking, add sliced mushrooms to the skillet and allow to caramelize.
  10. Add crumbled bacon and half & half. Bring to a low boil and reduce to simmer.
  11. Cook for 2-5 minutes or until sauce starts to thicken.
  12. Remove chicken from oven and plate. Spoon cream sauce over each chicken breast to serve. Garnish with fresh snipped thyme.

 

Note: if using light half & half, you will need to adjust the nutritional information.

Makes 4 servings

Nutrition Facts:

Calories 365

Total Fat 19g

Total Carbohydrates 6.5g

Dietary Fiber 0g

Protein 45.5g

Print Recipe  Bacon and Mushroom Smothered Chicken Breasts

Think Like an Olympian

Posted on September 05, 2016 by

better than yesterdayThe excitement of the Summer Olympics in Rio has ended, leaving us with fond memories and looking toward Tokyo 2020. Watching the greatest athletes in the world performing their sport was awe inspiring. We might not dream of following in their footsteps, but we admire their talent. Michael Phelps dominated swimming, ending his career with a whopping 23 gold medals. Simone Biles soared to Olympic gold on the floor exercise, including leading her team to a Women’s All-Around gold medal. Is there an Olympic sport that makes you want to jump off the couch and participate? Did any of the Olympic athletes inspire you to eat healthier or train harder? You don’t have to be an Olympic athlete, but for health and weight loss it helps to think like one!

HAVE A DREAM AND SET A GOAL

The goal of an Olympic athlete is to master their sport and achieve their wildest dreams. In order to excel on the balance beam, a gymnast must possess superior balance. Marathon runners need to achieve endurance and speed. Volleyball players’ training includes agility and coordination drills. Being an athlete may not be your goal, but in order to feel healthy and be physically fit, exercise needs to be a part of your daily life. Decide what type of exercises you like. Swimming is a very effective workout that strengthens all of your muscles. But, if you wince at the thought of getting into a pool, it’s not the right choice for you. If you’re an outdoors person, you can bike, jog or hike. If you prefer the indoors, fitness centers offer a vast variety of exercise classes. Set short-term and long-term goals using the SMART acronym. Goal setting helps you stay focused and on track.

DONT BE PUSHEDEAT TO LIVE

Depending on the sport, athletes require a variation in the number of calories every day. They require more calories during training due to the long hours they log. Most Olympians are meticulous eaters, choosing clean, natural, and unprocessed foods. During their training they don’t overeat, choosing salads, fresh fruit, yogurt, and lean meats. Nutrition can make all difference when an athlete is at the starting line. Some of the athletes express excitement about being able to eat their “cheat food” following the Olympics. For The Fab 5 gymnasts, that cheat food is pizza. Consistently eating overly processed food will lead to disease, especially in the absence of movement. Choose nutritiously dense foods to keep your body functioning properly. Protein is crucial, as it fuels the muscles and helps increase lean body mass. Lean body mass drives your metabolism and helps with weight loss.

PLAN AHEAD

Olympians usually train 4-8 years before making an Olympic team. They plan training schedules up to 4 years in advance. They enlist the help of a coach, exercise physiologist, sports medicine specialist, and a nutritionist. Formulate your exercise plan every day, just like meal planning. Make exercise a priority every day, even if you only have 20 minutes. Quality is more important than quantity. If you struggle with motivation or need that extra “push”, hire a personal trainer.

championsDETERMINATION

The definition of determination is “a quality that makes you continue trying to do or achieve something that is difficult.” Olympians are determined to win, no matter how difficult it gets. Cutting back the carbohydrates is difficult and might lead to carb withdrawal symptoms. Push through the difficulties and it will get easier. Walking a mile could be daunting at first, but as your endurance builds a mile won’t seem so far. Exercise is supposed to be challenging. Don’t forget the end prize: losing weight and getting healthy. “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.”

SACRIFICES

Olympians have to sacrifice tremendously to get to the top. They miss out on family events, time with friends, holidays, and go into debt. At age 14, Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas had to move 1000 miles away from her mother to train with a world-class coach in order to fulfill her dream. To achieve weight loss goals, you will need to make some small sacrifices. You might have to wake up 20 minutes earlier to fit in your workout, forgo your favorite mixed drink every night, walk/jog during your son’s soccer practice, or be the only person at your birthday party not eating cake. The goal for exercise/fitness is 10,000 steps a day which equals 5 miles. Move your body as much as possible.

STRONG WORK ETHIC/MENTAL TOUGHNESS

Olympians are taught to finish the race regardless of the score. Volleyball player Kayla Banwarth of team USA is on the number 1 ranked team in the world. Unfortunately at the volleyball semifinals in Rio, her team couldn’t pull through and Kayla fought back tears. It was shocking to realize the gold was out of the question. However, they banded together, fought back and took the bronze metal. Olympians are focused and comprehend that success will occur as a result of physical and mental strength. Are you at a point in your life where you are mentally prepared for change? Are you ready to put your health number one and get your priorities in check?

DON’T LET SETBACKS GET YOU DOWN

The Williams’ sisters won gold at the last 3 Olympics. Unfortunately, in Rio they lost in the first round to women from the Czech Republic. Russian diver Llya Zakhavov was the defending Olympic champion in the 3-meter springboard. In the semi-final round he did a belly flop and was out of the competition. French gymnast Samir Ait Said suffered a broken leg during the vault qualifying round, abruptly dashing his Olympic dreams. We’re all going to suffer setbacks and distractions: changing jobs, relocating, marriage, divorce, children, illness, or injury. Perhaps you’re struggling to get the 40 pounds of baby weight off. Maybe your boss is making you work overtime and you can’t get to the gym as frequently. You have bad knees and it hurts just to get out of bed. Or, you’ve gone through divorce and the stress has caused weight gain. First of all, tomorrow is another day to get back on track. Pool exercise is a great choice for bad knees and stiff joints. Try massage, relaxation techniques, or regular exercise to reduce stress levels. And, 20 minutes of body weight exercises at home is effective if you can’t get to the gym. There is no time for excuses when our health is on the line.

see life differentlyOlympic gymnast Mary Lou Retton said, “Each of us has a fire in our hearts for something. It’s our goal in life to find it and keep it lit.” We’re not all born to be athletes, but we can think like one. Set goals, and turn those goals into action. In order to lose weight and be healthy, you’re going to have to make sacrifices, plan ahead, and be tough mentally. Remember, life is not a destination, it’s a journey.

Blackened Chicken

Posted on September 02, 2016 by

blackened chickenQuick & easy for a juicy, spicy treat!

 

Ingredients

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 Tbls paprika

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried parsley

1 tsp garlic salt

1 tsp onion powder

¼ tsp cayenne pepper (use a little more if you like it hot but be careful!)

 

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Wash chicken breasts and pat dry with paper towel.
  3. Spray 8 x 10 baking dish with cooking spray.
  4. Mix spices together in shallow dish.
  5. Spray chicken breasts with cooking spray or rub lightly with olive oil.
  6. Dredge chicken breast through spices, coating the top side of each piece.
  7. Place in glass dish and bake for 25-30 minutes or until juices run clear.
  8. Serve with colorful veggies and a salad! Enjoy~

 

Makes 48 servings

Nutrition Facts:

Calories 135

Total Fat 1g

Total Carbohydrates .5g

Dietary Fiber 0g

Protein 31g

 

Print recipe  Blackened chicken

Weight Maintenance Strategies

Posted on August 29, 2016 by

“It’s ironic that we foinspiredcus on weight loss, when the longest phase of your journey is maintenance!”  

Your road to weight loss was challenging and required tremendous discipline.  Now, you’ve reached the Maintenance Phase.  This phase is a bit different than weight loss and requires some different skills. Here are a few weight maintenance strategies to help keep that weight off for good!

The 6 Keys to Long-Term Weight Control:

EATING:

*Think PROTEIN first because it’s satisfying and harder to digest. Protein also increases the release of hormones that promote weight loss:  growth hormone (helps to preserve lean body mass and keep metabolism up) and glucagon (tells the body to mobilize fat).

*Follow a structured pattern of eating:  Breakfast, Lunch, and Supper with small snacks in between.

*Don’t swear off dessert entirely.  Use the 3-bite rule.

*Avoid banking calories:  It’s ineffective to starve all day so you indulge at your favorite restaurant for supper.  This is a recipe for disaster because going hungry for several hours sets you up for a pig-out.

*The Scale:  Weight yourself twice a week.

*Go back to basics:  If you’ve put on weight, try doing a mini jump start (Weight & Inches shakes).

*Remember the CONCEPT of eating:  “How little can I eat and still be satisfied?”

DRINKING:

*We can’t survive without water and should be drinking throughout the day.  Surgical patients, however, shouldn’t drink and eat simultaneously. Staying hydrated with water can prevent mindless snacking/overeating. Carbohydrates and calories in alcoholic drinks add up quickly. Drink in moderation.

VITAMINS:

*Everyone should take pharmaceutical grade vitamins, especially if you’re restricting your calories.

*1st Tier Vitamins:  Multivitamin and Essential Fatty Acid (EFA’s.)

2nd Tier Vitamins:  B-Complex, magnesium, and Vit. D (about half the population is deficient).

SLEEPING:

*The most successful patients who have lost weight and maintained get 7 or more hours a sleep every night.

*Sleep is needed to recover from the day.

*Cortisol levels will remain elevated from sleep deprivation and make weight loss even more difficult.

EXERCISE:

*Exercise becomes even more essential during the maintenance phase of weight loss.

*It helps you preserve lean body mass and keep metabolism up (especially resistance training).

* Concentrate your workouts:  quality is more important than quantity.  Even 15 minutes of out-of-your-comfort-zone exercising can help maintain your fitness level.

*Pick activities you enjoy:  If dancing to Latin music in a zumba class sounds nightmarish, choose another format like Boot Camp or a High Intensity Interval class (HITT).  If you’re an avid outdoors person, find good running/walking trails, go hiking, or biking.

PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY:

*Make a conscious decision every morning to stay on track and focus on staying healthy.

*Surround yourself with supportive people.

*Reward Yourself:  It’s fun to set personal goals and reward yourself along the way. But, it’s too risky to reward yourself with food.  For every 3 months of weight maintenance, you could go to the movies, buy a new outfit, or take a little vacation.

Weight maintenance is often more challenging than weight loss.  Ultimately, no one can do this but you.  We will help you and support you, but we can’t do the work for you.  If you’re continuing to struggle, call and set an appointment with one of the CFWLS counselors to get back on track.

Fajita Kabobs with Creamy Cilantro-Lime Sauce

Posted on August 05, 2016 by

chicken fajita kabobsIngredients
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 sweet peppers
1 large onion
½ cup lime juice
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon dried cilantro
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
Bamboo or metal skewers

Creamy cilantro sauce:
1 cup light sour cream
3 tablespoons cilantro, minced
1 teaspoon lime zest
2 teaspoons lime juice

Directions
1. Cut chicken into 1” pieces.
2. Cut peppers and onion into 1” chunks.
3. In a large re-sealable bag, combine seasonings and lime juice. Add chicken breasts, onion and peppers and allow to marinate in refrigerator for at least an hour.
4. Thread chicken, peppers, and onion onto skewers.
3. Place each skewer onto grill. Allow each to sear and flip to other side. Brush each skewer with any remaining marinade.
4. Grill over high heat for 5 minutes, flip, and let cook for an additional 3 minutes or until done.
5. In a bowl, combine all creamy cilantro sauce ingredients. Stir well to combine.
6. Top with the creamy cilantro sauce, cilantro, and a squeeze of lime juice.

Makes 4 servings

Nutrition Facts:
Calories 250
Total Fat 6g
Total Carbohydrates 13g
Dietary Fiber 3g
Protein 39g

Print Recipe Chicken Fajita Kabobs with Creamy Lime-Cilantro Sauce