Jumpstart to Skinny – Week One (with a grocery shopping list…BOOM!)

The road to health is paved with good intentions. It’s also littered with quinoa & chicken breasts.

– me (erin) just now


(picture from @trainerbob’s instagram and he totally does)

In the blogging off season some stuff happened, not the least of which was my baby brother Mike got engaged. And, there’s nothing like an impending wedding of epic eternal family pictures to light a fire under one’s post-anniversary-trip-with-10-bonus-lbs behind. So, I made a new goal: 40 pounds down by the wedding in October.

(Now, while it may flatter me, do not say I don’t have 40 lbs to lose. Believe me, come the fall I will still be 20 pounds heavier than my 18 year old self.)

So, we have ramped up our efforts. JR posted about our commitment to Tone it Up’s spring Bikini Series (which is bomb btw, check out their workouts here here here). But, in order to get extra serious I have added another trainer to the mix: Bob Harper from tv’s Biggest Loser (his Instagram @trainerbob is worth checking out).

All the lovely Paleo bloggers we have enjoyed in the past continue to serve us well. And, the ladies over at Tone It Up are righteous to be sure. It’s just that Bob came out with a new book recently, Jumpstart to Skinny, that’s all kinds of fabu and, frankly, is exactly what Karena & Katrina  suggest in their plan (except K&K say yes to greek yogurt. golly gee, do we love greek yogurt).

Then, BONUS, my little sister Rocket decided to join us. She comes over every week to hang with my kids while I work on becoming a novelist (yeah, i know, newsflash. more on that later. promise.) and we are partnering for success.

Health Protip: Get a partner. It is next to impossible to get healthy inside a vacuum  (have you ever seen what’s inside your vacuum? Gross. SO, Game. Set. Match. Get a friend to support and join you!)

Bob articulates a 3-week plan to reprogram your metabolism and “jumpstart” the weight loss. Similar to his persona on tv’s Biggest Loser, TB’s book is charismatically on point. He is humorous, empathetic and no-nonsense.

The problem came after I read the first week’s plan and was all set to get going. I realized there wasn’t a grocery list. Whaaaaaa? So I utilized our Weekly Plan sheet, filling in all Bob’s meals (reframing a few meals that are not Paleo – he has a meal with Oats and two with Ezekial bread, thankfully dairy has been left out, besides a few sprinklings of Parmesan I will skip.).


And, like the gracious host that I am, I will share my list with y’all. You will have to get the book to find the recipes and meal plan (don’t want to infringe on Bob’s copyright. You’ve just been Lawyer-ed.)

Bob Harper’s Jumpstart to Skinny Week 1 Grocery List 

(for one person)

Fresh Produce



Yellow Squash

2 Bell Peppers

Red Onion

Yellow Onion


Green Onion

Basil Leaves

4 Plum Tomatoes





Spaghetti Squash







Swiss Chard


Baby Bok Choy

Shredded Cabbage (Trader Joe’s)

Power to the Green x3 (Trader Joe’s)



Fennel Bulb

Persian Cucumbers


Dry/Canned Goods


Olive Oil Spray

Sesame Oil

Low Sodium Vegtable Broth

32oz crushed low sodium canned tomatoes

Unsweetened Almond Milk

Ground Flax Seeds

Liquid Aminos

* Ezekial Bread


Fridge/Frozen Goods

35 Egg Whites (4 TJ’s containers)

Frozen Berries

8 4oz chicken breasts

4 oz cod fish

4 oz salmon fillet

ground turkey breast

*Parmesan Cheese

*Rolled Oats


Weekly Meal Plan-Free Printable

In college one of our roommates babysat for a cute-as-a-button eccentric 4 year old boy.  He liked to sit next to his bestie (also 4) on the top bunk discussing being a good brother, boogers and/or the afterlife. Rommate Holly was moving to Germany for a semester, therefore downsizing when she gave him her stuffed moose. Later, news came that he had named him Plans. This was way before Death Cab made an album by the same name. And, this wasn’t the first concept driven toy naming incident. I believe he had a bunny named Time or Inertia too. Kids are the best, especially creative ones.

Today we have a Moose named Plans on our hands.

While not an administrator or executer naturally I too LOVE love LUV plans. Mostly the making of them. Or the making of them for me. That’s my favorite. A whole day planned out just for me makes me swoon. Husband has gotten the memo and has planned some pretty epic days for me over the years.

Why then did it take me 30 years to realize that planning my food choices for the week would tickle my fancy? The answer is, I have no freaking idea, but it’s awesome.


I have done the dinner meal plan before, but sometimes fell flat for lunches and subsequently, snacks. So, I consulted JR (the epic meal planner) and we designed this little weekly plan. Along with ALL 5 meals we eat a day we wanted it to include space to chart H2O consumption (more on that soon) and work outs (WO). We also wanted a space to write down our shopping lists ON THE SAME PAGE that could be torn away or folded under for a seamless fridge look.

photo-3 photo-2

And, we wanted to offer this lovely and useful tool for eating success to y’all. I have used it for 2 weeks and find it perfection. But, please let us know if we should do any tweaking.

Weekly Plan Download

IMPORTANT: for it to print right make sure to turn on “borderless” printing.

meal plan3


Egg Cups of Champions

This is the first time the mister is going full paleo with me (usually he eats paleo at home, but at work he consumes mcdonald’s dollar menu items like it’s going out of style). But, in a show of solidarity and for his own beach vacation goals he is all in. After scrambling around the kitchen every morning and he sometimes starving through lunch, I realized that it would be helpful to do a bit more preparing and cooking. Starting at the beginning of the day seemed like a good plan. So, I made egg muffins/cups/faux-quiches to last the week.


There are a few recipes around the interwebs. I made up my own. And, verdict is in… YUM.  I had mine warm since I was the one to take them out of the oven, the mister had them cold and said they are better warm, but eatable cold too.  Served up with some sliced red pepper and a handful of cherry tomatoes, it was a breakfast delight.


INGREDIENTS (all from trader joes):

18 egg cups

Olive Oil Cooking Spray (prep muffin tins)

Turkey Bacon (rip in half longways and place in muffin cups)

Precut onions (lazy option, i know. but who wants to cry over onions at 7 am. place in bottom of cup)

any of these: spinach, peppers, jalapenos, asparagus, salsa, tomatoes…

2 Cartons egg whites from TJ’s or 24oz larger container from the market (pour over the veggie and t.bac cups a few millimeters from the top)

sprinkle spices on top: cayenne pepper, salt, black pepper, crushed red pepper

Cook @ 350 for 25-30 minutes.



These are delicious, nutritious, and a staple in both of our kitchens. If you used our grocery list you already have the ingredients for these. Even the kiddos and hubbies like them. Would you expect less from Amazeballs.

Also, I would be remiss to not credit the amazing Sarah Fargaso at Everyday Paleo. These Amazeballs are really just a skinnier version of her Marvelous Meatballs.

Here is what you need for the balls:

1 1/2 lbs. ground turkey

1 lb. pork or chicken sausage (please use some pork sausage as some fattiness is necessary), remove casings

2 stalks of chopped celery

2 chopped carrots (or a handful of chopped baby carrots)

1/2 white or yellow onion diced

Any Italian Seasoning You Like (oregano and garlic powder work great, 21 Seasoning Salute at Trader Joes is yummy too)

Little Bit of Honey

3 Eggs

1/2 c. Almond Meal

For the special sauce:

2 16 oz can of fire roasted diced tomatoes, drained

2 cans of tomato paste

A large handful of torn fresh basil

12 Garlic Cloves chopped

Salt and Pepper to Taste

Mix together all ingredients for the Amazeballs. Form into balls the size of a hacky sack. Line the bottom of a roasting pan or dutch oven with one layer. If needed you can add some on top too.

Mix together all ingredients for sauce and just slather them on your balls.

Bake at 250 for 3-4 hours or 350 for 1 hour.

And boom you’ve got yourself some Amazeballs. Perfect with some broiled asparagus or a dinner salad. Try to keep your serving size to one or two balls. They also make spectacular leftovers.

This Little Piggie Went to Market


While we consume mass quantities of pizza, chocolate chip cookies and Nespresso lattes with refined sugar we plan for tomorrow. For tomorrow we go large. Tomorrow we get ‘er done. Tomorrow we start the first day of healthy living 2013. Tomorrow we go full caveman. Therefore, tomorrow we go grocery shopping.

So, if you are joining us for JANUARY PALEOLITHIC THRILL SPECTACULAR (JPTS) we want to say HUZZAH! and here’s a little list to set you up for success in the kitchen.

First: we keep to the edges of the grocery store, and shop primarily at COSTCO (C), Trader Joes (TJ) and Whole Foods (WF).

Second: we attempt at meal planning for all meals (including snacks).

Third: we have found that if we have non-Paleo food laying around we are borrowing trouble. Purging is necessary! Sugar. Grain. Rice. Potatoes. Refined Sugar. Dairy. All out! If it doesn’t have a face or come straight from the earth it goes.



LARGE bag of Baby Spinach (C)
Bag of “power to the greens” (TJ)
Bag of Arugela (TJ)
Bag of Asperagus (C)
Tray of Tomatoes (C)
Box of Cherry Tomatoes (TJ or C)
Precut Mushrooms (TJ or C)
3 bags of Precut Onions (because we are lazy) (TJ)
2 Miropex contaniers (because our laziness really knows no bounds) (TJ)
6-8 zucchini (TJ)
bag of brussel sprouts (TJ or C)
bag of baby carrots (TJ)
bag of little mixed bell peppers (C)
bushel of fresh basil (TJ)

berries, berries and more berries

***Here is the lowdown on fruit. It is delish because it is full of sugar. If you are really trying to lose weight go easy on the fruit and don’t eat it after noon. Erin is in the final 60 days till her 10 year anniversary trip and therefore is foregoing fruit all together. Brave girl.


2 dozen (at least) organic free range eggs (TJ or C)
2 lbs chicken italian sausage (TJ or WF)
1 lb pork spicy italian sausage (TJ or WF)
1 lb pork italian sausage sweet (TJ or WF)
1 lb ground turkey (TJ)
skinless chicken breasts/thighs
rotisserie chicken (C)
pre-grilled and seasoned chicken breasts (TJ)
frozen salmon or mahi mahi (TJ or C)
2 can tuna in water (TJ)

Canned / Dry Foods:

4 16-oz cans diced tomatoes (TJ or C)
2 16-oz cans fire roasted diced tomatoes (TJ)
2 cans tomato paste (TJ or C)
2 boxes of beef broth (TJ or WF)
1 jar of sugarless basil marinara (TJ)
1 jar capers (TJ)
1 jar whole grain mustard
1 package almond meal/flour (TJ or WF)
ground flax seed (TJ)
dried organo (TJ)
21 seasoning salute (TJ)
red pepper flakes (TJ)

So, off to the market with us!

Oh, and Happy New Year!

2013 is gonna be a healthy shrinking good time.

Acorn Squash Magnifique

Got an awesome recipe from my awesome friend Sarah. She’s also on a quest to get healthy and hawt, just finished her first 30 day challenge this week. Solid work! She passed on the following recipe and I made it for another friend named Sarah and my mom for lunch today. It was delicious, lemme tell ya.


Doesn’t that look lovely. Because it is! Now here’s the recipe:

Preheat oven to 375

2 acorns squashes cut in half and de-seeded. Brush with coconut oil and sprinkle cinnamon generously.
1 lb ground meat (we had ground turkey thighs) browned with any spices you want (I used splashes of smokey paprika, fennel seeds, oregano and salt)
1/2 cauliflower head diced in a food processor.
1 1/2 cups food processor diced kale.
8 slices of uncooked bacon.

Combine fine diced veggies with browned seasoned meat. Stuff into squash holes making a small mound. Cover with 2 slices of bacon. Place on greased Pyrex casserole pan. Bake for 30ish minutes. I put the broiler on for 5 at the end to get the bacon a little crisp.


Here’s em tonight eating a very un-paleo mac’n cheese with a side of hot oatmeal.


Planning is my favorite


I love to plan. It’s kind of a hobby for me. In fact my husband and I are planning a 10 year anniversary trip. At first I wanted him to surprise me. But then the planner in me freaked out and I needed to know so I could plan for the trip. (In case you are wondering, we are going to Mexico. I will look fierce in my bikini. Oh yes, fierce I tell you.)

So of course I make and follow a meal plan. At the beginning of each month I set our menu. I look at our calendar and figure out what nights we need fast meals or meals I can put in the oven and forget about for a few hours. I make a note of any date nights or times we will be out of town.

Each Monday I do our major grocery shopping and try to get everything I need for the week. I find that cooking is way less of a chore this way. No staring in front of the fridge trying to figure out what to make. I also find that we eat out much less when I meal plan. Saves money and we eat healthier. Double bonus.

Do you meal plan? What are you planning to cook this week? I will be making Chicken with Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Italian Sausage Stew, Pioneer Woman Pork Roast and Apples, BBQ Lettuce Wrapped Turkey Burgers, and the Barefoot Contessa’s Lemon Garlic Roasted Chicken. All Paleoish and delicious!

So seriously, what are you making?