Chill Out and Make a Motivating Playlist

Best news ever! If you want to get stronger, you have to rest. Your muscles need time to repair themselves ¡ª this is when the strengthening actually happens. Even though today is a “chill day” in our Just Press Play workout plan, it’s not an excuse to just sit around. Go for a 20-minute walk to get your blood flowing to help feed your weary muscles ¡ª this can even be shopping. Seriously!

And why not take some time today and create a new playlist full of motivational tunes to crank up when you feel like skipping out on your next workout? Here is a list of 100 heart-pumping songs.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Kat Borchart

The At-Home Workout That Works Your Entire Body in 20 Minutes

The At-Home Workout That Works Your Entire Body in 20 Minutes

This quick| full-body workout will help you stay fit no matter where you are. With no equipment needed to work your entire body| there really are no excuses. Plus| it’s short! This workout| including warmup and cooldown| takes between 20 and 30 minutes. It all depends on how much rest time you take between circuits.

Directions: Warm up with five minutes of light cardio| then perform this five-exercise circuit three times. Cool down with three minutes of stretching.

| Goblet Squat

Reps: 15

  • Start standing with your feet wider than shoulder width. With your back slightly arched| push your hips back| bend your knees| and lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor and your elbows touch your knees.
  • With your weight focused in your heels| push yourself up to the starting position.

| Push-Up

Reps: 12

  • Come into plank position with your arms and legs straight| shoulders above the wrists.
  • Bend your elbows out to the sides and lower your chest toward the ground. Stop as soon as your shoulders are in line with your elbows. Exhale feels the abs pull to the spine to help you straighten your arms. This counts as one rep.
  • If this is too difficult| do this exercise with your knees on the floor.

| Side Bridge

Reps: 12 each side

  • Start lying on your left side with your weight on your elbow. Your legs are almost straight and your feet stacked with the right on top. Inhale to prepare.
  • Exhale| pull your abs to your spine| and lift your pelvis off the floor| coming into a side elbow-plank. Really lift your bottom waist up. Pull your shoulder blade down your back so your shoulder stays away from your ear (this will work your lat| too).
  • Hold for three seconds. Lower your pelvis back to the floor slowly and with control to complete one rep.

| Gate Swing

Resp: 15

  • Start with your feet in a wide| second-position stance with your toes pointed slightly outward. Bend your knees and lower into a squat| using your hands to help push your knees wide apart to deepen the inner-thigh stretch.
  • Push off your knees to get leverage| and jump your feet together to complete one rep.

| Frog Crunch

Reps: 15

  • Start on your back with your hands behind your head and your elbows wide. Keeping your heels together and toes pointed out| bring your knees to touch your elbows as you perform a crunch bringing your upper back and head off the floor.
  • Keeping your abs engaged and heels together| lengthen your legs away from your center as you lower your head to the floor.
  • Draw your legs back into the frog position to complete one full rep. Make sure to pull your navel to your spine throughout this exercise.

Day 8 Recipes: Clean-Eating Plan

Breakfast: Cranberry Almond Breakfast Bar

Note: Eat one bar for breakfast; save one bar for breakfast on Day 12. Freeze the remaining bars.

Cranberry Almond Breakfast Bars

C&J Nutrition

Cranberry Almond Breakfast Bars

Homemade Granola Bars: Almond| Chia| Cranberry

Ingredients

1 cup almond butter1/4 cup honey1 teaspoon vanilla extract1/4 teaspoon cinnamon3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats1 cup sliced almonds1/2 cup dried cranberries3 tablespoons chia seeds

Take a Chill Day, but Show Your Hamstrings Some Love

Yay! Today you get to take a well-deserved rest day. After all| a day off allows your muscles to recover| rebuild| and become stronger. But remember| to speed the recovery process| it’s good to get your blood flowing to help feed your weary muscles. So take yourself for a 20-minute stroll then show your hamstrings some love by stretching the back of your legs. Not sure where to start? Check out these easy hamstring stretches. Try one or all ¡ª just get stretching.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Benjamin Stone

Day 6 Recipes: Clean-Eating Plan

Breakfast: Tofu Scramble With Kale and Sweet Potatoes

Note: Eat one serving of this tofu scramble with a 1 cup of frozen mango thawed and sprinkled with cinnamon. To thaw the mango| defrost for 90 seconds in a microwave. You will use the remaining frozen mango in Week Two.

Freeze the remaining portion of the tofu scramble for a quick and healthy breakfast after you have completed this two-week plan. Freezing the tofu will give it a more “meaty” texture that you might enjoy more.

Tofu Scramble With Kale and Sweet Potatoes

From Jenny Sugar| POPSUGAR Fitness

Tofu Scramble With Kale and Sweet Potatoes

Tofu Scramble With Kale and Sweet Potatoes

Ingredients

1 small sweet potato| cut into 1/2-inch cubes1 tablespoon canola oil1/2 small yellow onion| chopped1 14-ounce package extrafirm tofu| drained and crumbled1/4 teaspoon garlic powder1 teaspoon ground cumin1/2 teaspoon salt1/4 teaspoon turmeric2 cups baby kaleSalt and pepper to taste

Welcome to the 2-Week Clean-Eating Plan – You’re Going to Love It

Start the New Year with a clean slate by following our Two-Week Clean-Eating Plan created by the registered dietitians Stephanie Clarke and Willow Jarosh of C&J Nutrition. The homemade meals, snacks, and treats ¡ª yes, you can have a lil’ something-something daily to help keep you on track ¡ª focus on fruits, veggies, whole grains, and lean proteins. We have printable shopping lists for each week as well as an easy-to-follow daily rundown of what to get, prep, make, and save, and when. The plan is alcohol free (time to give up the partying now that the holidays are over), but you can have your morning cup of caffeine. But since the plan is dairy free, you will be drinking your daily cup of coffee or tea without the additional half-and-half.

All the meals, snacks, and treats included and add up to about 1,600 calories per day. The carb, protein, and fat ration is close to 50:20:30. The carbs are high fiber and minimally processed. The protein is lean, and the fats are primarily plant-based. And all the food is tasty.

How the Plan Works

The 14-day plan is divided into two weeks, with a separate shopping list for each. The first day of each week is your prep day when you wash, chop, and store many ingredients you will be cooking with throughout the week. On your prep day and during the week, you will prepare multiple servings of some recipes, as well extra portions of certain dishes, to eat as leftovers later in the week. Talk about convenience. Heck! You might have even noticed that some dishes taste better the second day.

While you can start the program on any day of the week, you need to follow it in sequence since this plan uses leftovers throughout each week. To help you prep and plan, we have created a rundown of the daily meals and a to-do list for each week. Think of this as your cheat sheet: print it out and put it on your fridge so you can easily follow along.

Prep Ahead For Ease

Prep days are important, and honestly, we think the commitment of planning ahead will help you stick to the program. On days one and eight, there is plenty of slicing and dicing to be done and a good amount of cooking. Plan to set aside two to three hours for prep and cook time. It’s also a great idea to think about a day in the middle of the week that might work for doing a small amount of prep for the end of the week.

Tips For SuccessShop Early: Plan your grocery shopping day one day ahead of your prep day, if possible, since shopping and cooking all in one day can be a little daunting. And since you are only shopping once each week, you will be freezing some fish and chicken. Just make sure to start thawing those items the day before, but don’t worry ¡ª we remind you about it in the daily rundown. Bulk Bins: Shop the bulk bins to save money by ensuring you have just the amount you need and no more. Look for nuts, seeds, spices, tea, dry goods, and even chocolate in the bulk bins of your local grocery store.Clear Containers: Store prepped produce and other ingredients in clear containers. The more you can see what’s in the fridge, the more likely you are to eat it and not forget about it!Freeze Meals: In this plan, you will be making extra portions of food ¡ª not only to use during this two-week plan, but also to freeze some for later. We suggest freezing extras right away in individual portions ¡ª be sure to label them. This works especially well with soups, sauces, and baked goods. This way you can conveniently eat clean after you’ve completed the plan. Another option, on the days when you make portions not used on the plan, invite some friends over! Eating clean doesn’t mean you can’t socialize.

We’re sure you have a few questions, so do check out our Frequently Asked Questions, and hopefully you will find your answers there.

Helpful Links

Frequently Asked Questions and Helpful Tips

Week One

Shopping List

Daily Rundown

Week Two

Shopping List

Daily Rundown

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Sarah Lipoff

Day 5 Recipes: Clean-Eating Plan

Breakfast: “Sweet Potato Pie” Smoothie

Note: This recipe uses one leftover potato from day three and leftover tofu from day four.

C&J Nutrition

“Sweet Potato Pie” Smoothie

Ingredients

This breakfast smoothie is great for people who don¡¯t love bananas and for anyone who wants a balance of protein, high-fiber carbohydrates, and fat to start their day off right.

1 cooked sweet potato, peeled (if you have a high-powered blender, you can leave the skin on)1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk3 tablespoons chopped pecans3 ounces soft tofu1/8 teaspoon cinnamonHandful of ice

It’s Chill Day – but Let’s Plan Ahead

Welcome to your first rest day! But let’s get something clear ¡ª chilling out means easing up from gas pedal| not taking a full-on break. We suggest a little light cardio to keep your momentum going and to get your blood moving| like a brisk walk| a short jog| or quick swim. But why not use this day off to plan the rest of your workouts for the month? Yep| make a bunch of fitness dates with yourself and you are way more likely to actually work out.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Mark Popovich

Day 4 Recipes: Clean-Eating Plan

Breakfast: Mushroom Fried Quinoa With Avocado and Egg

Note: This dish uses leftover quinoa from yesterday’s dinner to create a hearty, satisfying, and savory breakfast in minutes.

C&J Nutrition

Mushroom Fried Quinoa With Avocado and Egg

Ingredients

1/2 cup sliced cremini mushrooms (or your favorite variety)1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil, divided3/4 cup cooked quinoa1/4 Hass avocado, sliced1 large eggPinch of sea salt