Elk Shape: Are you fit for the hunt?

“Nature will never discriminate. She does not care how old or young, weak or strong you are. She is ruthless and cannot be fooled. Rich or poor – she will expose you.”  –

The idea behind being “elk fit” is that you are in good enough physical shape both cardio-wise and strength-wise to successfully carry out your hunt without feeling like you want to die on the mountain.

A bull can weigh over 800lbs and yield a few hundred lbs of precious, delicious protein. From all of the research that I have done, the F.O.C.U.S method seems to make the most sense.

*Foundation – Finding a good program is important. Implement things like squats because you will primarily use your legs hiking, hiking, and hiking some more.

*Oxygen – Hiking and elevation change will kick your trash if you are not in good cardio health. Implement things like HIIT and Tabata. Not sure what those are, let me tell you.

-HIIT focuses on sprints and active rests. Interval training involves using max effort for 30-60 seconds and then slowing your pace to an active rest for 1-2 minutes. A typical HIIT workout should last you around 20 minutes. Example – Jump on a treadmill and set the incline at around 2-3, find a speed that you would consider the max speed that you are able to hold for 30 seconds. Once that 30 seconds is up, lower the speed to a safe walking speed that still exerts energy and walk at that for 90 seconds. Repeat this for 8-10 cycles.

-Tabata is a form of HIIT that uses multiple muscle groups simultaneously (squat thrusts, burpees, kettle bell swings, mountain climbers, sprints, step-ups, etc.) and should last between four to 10 minutes. Tabata incorporates the 20/10 ratio (20 seconds of full intensity, 10 seconds of rest). You should start at 4 minutes until your body adapts, and then work your way up in time week over week. Tabata isn’t easy, but is one of the most effective ways of improving cardio, and burning fat.

*Core – Core is not just abs. Having a strong core will ensure stability, will help decrease the likelihood of injury, and will improve the efficiency of your body in general. Work on strengthening your:
-Lower back and abs – Leg Raises, Cat Curls, Back Extensions, crunches, planks, etc.
-Hips – Single leg hip lifts, Split Squats, Lateral Squats, Side Lunges, etc.

*Understanding – You have to understand that mental strength and physical strength go hand in hand. Your mind will tell your body it’s done long before your body itself gives up. Being mentally prepared for brutal backcountry, and the physical toll a hunt will take on your body is imperative.

*Strength – Strength plays a major factor in a hunt. Packing your equipment in and out, and potentially packing out an animal. It’s important that you are ready for that. Implement exercises that are functional in real life situations:

*Picking things up off the ground
*Pulling things overhead
*Pulling yourself up
*Running, Jumping, and throwing

Bottom line, be prepared. Do you pull your bow out the week before the hunt and hope that it’s tuned and ready in time for opening weekend? Or do you shoot year round? Repetition is key for muscle memory. Keep on top of your physical fitness year round, and you should have no problems having a successful hunt. It’s easier to stay in shape than it is to get in shape.





Machine Weights vs. Free Weights

Have you ever walked into a gym and thought, where do I start?

If you’ve ever walked in and been overwhelmed by the sheer amount of equipment, and felt intimidated, I can promise you that you’re not alone. Every piece of equipment has a purpose, and each has it’s own benefits. I wanted to talk a little about the pros and cons of free weights vs machine weights.

Really, it’s about doing what you’re comfortable with, your fitness level, your goals, and what equipment you have access to. You should aim to train all of your major muscle groups at least twice a week, and keep at least one day in between training sessions for those muscle groups.

For me, I prefer free weight. I feel like I get a better workout all around by using free weights as opposed to machines. Here are some of my personal favorite exercises to use for both –



No matter which route you choose to go, be sure to use proper form. If you aren’t sure, ask somebody. The majority of the people I run into at the gym are happy to lend a helping hand or a quick tip. After all, we’re all there for a common goal!

Anywhere Workout Circuit



If you ever find yourself in a situation where you don’t or won’t have equipment readily available, order a resistance band to keep on hand. This circuit can be done anywhere as it doesn’t take up much space. Find a rep/set ratio that works for you and will help you work up a good sweat and go for it!

Chicken Crust Pizza

Love pizza but hate the calories and fat that come along with it? I bring to you, the chicken crust pizza. Use the following recipe and tell me what you think!

Start by preheating your oven to 450 degrees and prepare your pan by spraying it with non-stick spray.

Use as much chicken as you’d like, but here’s the recipe that I used as I doubled my ingredients for the actual crust –

32oz ground chicken (I ground mine in a food processor)
.5 cup mozzarella
.5 cup Parmesan
1tsp oregano
1tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1tsp garlic powder

Mix all of your ingredients together and spread evenly on a pan using your hands, or by placing a piece of parchment paper on your chicken and using a rolling pin to evenly spread your mixture

Stick your pan in the oven and cook for about 10 minutes.
Once your crust is done, remove from the oven and cover with your desired toppings, there are no rules (including pineapple, because it does belong on pizza despite what Chef Gordon Ramsey says.)

Here are the toppings that I put on mine – (1 package pepperoni, 1.5cups shredded cheese, 1 cup pizza sauce)

Once you have put your toppings on, stick it back in the oven for 8-10 minutes to melt your cheese. Voila! Chicken Crust pizza!

Macros (if divided into 9 pieces) –
262 Calories – 31 Protein – 5 Carb – 13 Fat

Protein Peanut Butter Cups

Here’s a sweet (healthy) treat recipe that I came across that is approved by my family!

(note: these have to remain in the freezer as they will melt if you leave them out)

Here is the recipe:

  • 2 Tablespoons (32g) Peanut Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons (12g) Powdered Peanut Butter (or Peanut Flour)
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Scoop (30g) Vanilla Protein Powder
  • 1/4 Cup (61g) Reduced Sodium Chickpeas (or Any Other White Bean)
  • 1/2 Ounce Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk (or Regular Milk/Other Milk Substitute)
  • 2 Tablespoons (28g) Dark Chocolate

Combine all of your ingredients aside from your Dark Chocolate into a food processor or really powerful blender. Process or blend everything together until it starts to clump up (be careful not to burn out your motor). Take out a muffin pan or silicone cups and evenly distribute your mix into however many you want to make. Melt your Dark Chocolate on either the stove top or in a microwave. Evenly distribute your melted chocolate on top. Put them in the freezer for 10:00-15:00 so that they can harden up.

Calories in the WHOLE recipe:

  • Calories: 563
  • Fat: 27g
  • Saturated Fat: 8g
  • Sodium: 455mg
  • Carbs: 37g
  • Fiber: 9g
  • Sugar: 17g
  • Protein: 43g

Calories in each peanut butter cup (if you make 4):

  • Calories: 140
  • Fat: 6.7g
  • Saturated Fat: 2g
  • Sodium: 113.7mg
  • Carbs: 9.2g
  • Fiber: 2.2g
  • Sugar: 4.2g
  • Protein: 10.7g

(not my recipe – this was found on – this is just one of the recipes from that site that I have tried, that I do approve)

How To: Meal Prepping

Today we’re going to talk about the how-to’s of meal prepping. Tips and tricks that I’ve learned over the years of doing this that will hopefully help you be more successful in your meal prepping.

To start, I want to explain macros (or, macronutrients) as a lot of my posts that are geared towards nutrition will refer to them. Macronutrients are the essential pieces to your diet – fats, carbohydrates, and protein.

Carbohydrates are essential for life. Your body and brain require a constant supply of glucose to function the right way, and those come from carbohydrates. The best kind of carbs to ingest are the slow digesting, unprocessed, high fiber carbs (whole grains, starchy carbs such as sweet potatoes, vegetables) as these will provide your body with a constant energy source.

Fats are also an essential energy source (it’s actually the most energy dense macronutrient source), helps the balance of hormones, the development of the brain and nervous systems, and is the transportation method for your fat soluble vitamins. When looking at adding fats into your diet, you want them to be a healthy source of fat (natural nut butters, coconut oil, avocados, omega-3 and omega-6).

Proteins are essential for muscle growth, and muscle rebuilding. Generally speakinng, the leaner the source of protein, the better (ground beef, chicken, turkey, bison, venison).

(When it comes to carbs and fats, if you have a higher carb diet you will want lower fat and vice versa)

When setting up your macro split, there are many sites that will help determine where you should start – and are the two that I would recommend. They may not be 100% precise, but they will get you close if you are interested in seeing where you should be without paying a macro coach. Every single person will require something different. It is dependent on your current weight, your body type, and your activity levels. Age does play a factor as well because as you get older, your body doesn’t process nutrients in the same manner as say a 25 year old would.

Okay, now down to the nitty-gritty. The meal planning and prepping. At this current moment, I have my macros set up so that I am at a slight deficit for my weight. After my NPC show, I rebounded more than I would have like to have, and am working to cut back down a bit for the summer. My split looks something like 1900 Calories – 142 grams of protein, 190 grams of carbs, and 63 grams of fat. In a typical day, my meals look something like this –

It seems like a lot of food, but it really isn’t. One key thing is vegetables, lots of them. They are high volume, and high fiber. They will keep you feeling more full, without taking away from your daily calories/macros. Something else to mention about my meal plans is that I will follow the same plan for weeks on end (eating the same foods every day doesn’t bother me) and I will have one cheat meal a week (usually for date night). This is also how I write my plans for my clients. If you need to write your plan for a full with different meals every day to be successful, then do that. Just realize that it will be more work for you when it comes to prepping these foods.

When it comes to preparing your food, you have to have a plan. I typically start with my meats as they take the longest to cook. While my meats are cooking, I start cooking and dispersing my rice and veggies into their individual containers for the week. A food scale is a MUST if you want to be successful with meal prepping and planning. Eyeballing portions can either cause you to 1) overeat or 2) under eat. The only thing I don’t precook is my breakfast (unless I have worked Kodiak Cakes into my plan for the week). Once your meat is done, portion it out and add it to your containers. Rule of thumb, weigh your meats cooked. Then you’re getting the true weight of the food.

Cooking for a full week at a time will ensure that you aren’t left scrambling mid-week for foods. It’s in the fridge, you can grab and go without having to stop your day to cook your foods.

I hope you found this helpful! As always, if you have any questions please feel free to leave a comment or fill out the contact me form!

How To: Starting Your Journey

I think one of the most commonly asked questions I get is, “How do you find the time, motivation, determination, etc?” It’s easy, for me, I want it that badly. I decided a long time ago that I wanted to be around for my kids for a very long time, and I was going to do whatever I had to, to ensure that happens. So, I start out by setting my goals. Here are some essential guidelines when it comes to setting your goals –

  • Your goal must be well defined – being vague or unspecific won’t work here. Example: “I want to lose 5 lbs by July 31” instead of “I want to lose weight this month”
  • State your goals in writing – Writing down your goal and posting it somewhere that you will see it every day will keep you accountable. It’s right in your face, and you won’t be able to forget it.
  • State your goal in a positive way. Your mind doesn’t understand negatively stated goals as well as positively stated ones. Instead of “I won’t eat junk food any more” try “I will eat healthy foods every day.”
  • Set a definite deadline for your goal, give it a sense of urgency. Unexpected situations may arise that set you off of your goal deadline, and if/when that happens, reset your deadline and keep on track.
  • Your goal must have an emotional appeal. Why are you doing this? What is driving you?
  • Your goal must be challenging, yet realistic. Set your goals in such a way that with a sustained, concentrated effort, you know you can get the job done.

One trick that you can use when setting goals, is to also set a reward for yourself. “If I hit goal x by date x, I am going to buy that pair of shoes/pants/makeup/etc that I have been wanting.”

Now that you have the tools to set your goals in the most effective way possible, we move on to the time aspect of it all. I hear a lot that “I don’t have the time to meal prep, go to the gym, get a workout in, etc” Listen, I’m a wife to a husband who works CRAZY hours, a momma to two toddlers, and I also work full time. I get the not having time part, but it again goes back to how badly you want it.

Meal prepping: Set aside one day a week to do your grocery shopping and meal planning. Write out your menu for the week based on your goals and go buy the foods to make that possible. Then either that day, or the next day I will prepare all of my meals for the week. Meal prepping can seem like a lot the first couple of times that you do it. Find a system that works for you and stick to it. If you ever need help or tips with meal prepping, PLEASE feel free to reach out to me! I am always happy to share the things that work for me!

Gym/Workout time: Find that time in your day that works best for you and try to use that time consistently. For me, my lunch break is the most ideal time for a quick 1.5 hours at the gym. If you don’t have access to a gym, or a gym makes you uncomfortable, that’s TOTALLY fine. There are so many resources for at home routines. Youtube will become your best friend! Or better yet, find a coach that can write you a good plan. I have plenty that I can recommend to you!

Have a plan in place, and follow it. Consistency is key for achieving your goals. Starting something can be hard, and sometimes it can be a little scary in the beginning. Once you get in a routine, it becomes like second nature. Like brushing your teeth in the morning, or putting on clothes. Find yourself a good support system. Find somebody or a group of somebodies who will have your back, and support your goals, and be your cheerleader. Find somebody to hold you accountable, because there will be times where you will want to throw your hands up in the air and quit. I have had many times where I have “fallen off the wagon”, but I always got right back on it.


Hello Friends!

I am so glad you have found your way here and I hope that you are ready to start this journey with me. I got quite a bit of positive feedback about starting a blog…. so here I am!

My hopes with the blog is to provide information on health and fitness topics that you might not know about, or that you might know a little about but have always wanted more information on. So by all means, if there is a topic that you have been DYING to have more information on, leave a comment and I will be happy to add it to my ever growing list of topics that I have created.

A little about me – I am a 25 year old wife and momma to two beautiful babies. We live in a semi-quiet little town in Northern Utah. I work for an online retail company called Wayfair and I absolutely LOVE my job. I picked up fitness as a hobby back in 2013 when I got tired of feeling and looking the way that I did post-baby. I found a love and passion for fitness and health that I didn’t know was possible. On my health and fitness journey, I have gone from losing all baby weight, to becoming pregant, to starting all over again! I became an ISSA certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist in 2016, and then moved on to competing in my very first NPC show in the Figure division in June of 2017.

I am always learning new things about this world, and I crave sharing that knowledge with other people. That brings us here! I hope that I am able to help and provide you information that is not only helpful, but as interesting to you as it is to me!