Health Goals for 2019: Diet & Exercise

Hey Friends,

Here’s a long awaited post I have been promising to my fellow friends who want to get in better shape in 2019 or continue their health journey. In today’s post, I’ll be breaking down my diet and exercise plans for 2019, but most importantly WHY I have chosen these paths. But before I continue, let me give you a backstory on my own health journey.

Health Disclaimer:

I am not a physician or Registered Dietician. The purpose of this blog is to share my personal journey and experience with diet and fitness. As always, consult a physician before making any changes in diet or exercise. The author and blog disclaim liability for any damage, mishap, or injury that may occur from engaging in any activities or ideas from this site.

My Health Journey

In high school, I was super in shape. I was active and stayed in shape through competitive cheerleading and at-home workouts. Then I went to college… I enjoyed college, especially Virginia Tech’s dining halls (some of the top ranked college food programs in the country… but not because they were low-fat). In general, I led a pretty unhealthy lifestyle in college. I ate and drank too much, got little exercise, and before I knew it, I had gained almost 25 pounds over the four years. After graduating and getting a job (which I HATED it, which led me to go back to graduate school to teach), I realized I needed to put my health first and make it a priority. In January 2015, I started educating myself about diet and exercise. I started by completing Kayla Itsines’ BBG Program while also trying to eat a balanced diet (wasn’t great at the diet part), and I lost 20 pounds in just three months. Now, almost four years later, I continue to do BBG regularly and have continued to educate myself about diet (which is why I am so passionate about my current diet regime). So what I plan to share with you today are things that I have discovered through my own personal journey. These are my personal goals for myself in 2019, however I am not a physician or a registered dietician. Always consult your physician before trying a new exercise and diet program to make sure it is right for you!

Diet: F-Factor

If you follow me on Instagram, then you know I’m all about the F-Factor Diet! My friend told me about F-Factor almost a year ago, when I was coming out of the unhealthy holiday eating frenzy. Although I had some success of keeping weight off over the past four years, I always put some weight back on during the holidays. I had an unhealthy relationship with food, and would often emotional eat. Then I would let one bad meal throw me off an entire weekend or week. I decided to give F-Factor a try, and the rest is history! It is honestly the BEST diet on the planet, but what really sold me was THIS podcast of an interview with Tanya Zuckerbrot, the F-Factor founder (Note: THIS link directs you to all of the podcasts with Skinny Confidential, scroll down to #90 from 11/27/2017) If you are intrigued by this diet at all, I would start by listening to this podcast. The science is so solid in how this diet works, it’s why I decided to give it a try.

The basics of the diet is that you ensure you are eating enough fiber and staying under a net gain of carbohydrates. That’s it. It’s incredibly simple and effective. There are three Steps to the diet. Step 1 is the most diet-like and is the hardest (still not as difficult as Whole 30 in my opinion), but it’s only two weeks! After that, it is SUPER easy to maintain!


Here’s a few reasons why I love the F-Factor Diet:

  1. You can have wine and cheese! No really, you can have wine and cheese! I did Whole 30 and literally hated my life with all of the food groups that were omitted. I love that on F-Factor nothing is omitted, instead it’s all about moderation.
  2. There’s a super easy free app to help journal your fiber and net carbs.
  3. The F-Factor Instagram account (and all of the Instagram accounts of the RD’s in the F-Factor family) constantly is updated with recipes, so you don’t ever get bored with what you’re eating
  4. The diet has many health benefits: decreases chances of breast and colon cancer, decreases chances of diabetes, helps with mental health, helps with skin and nail health, gives you sustainable energy, etc.
  5. Last but not least- it’s something I can stick to for life. After Step 1, Step 2 & 3 are incredibly easy to stick to. You can go out to eat, have whole grain pasta, and drink wine… what more can you ask for?

If you want to give this a go, I would 100% recommend reading the F-Factor Diet book, you can get it HERE (Note: there are a few book out there, the one I provided a link to is the most up to date and useful). I firmly believe to be successful in this diet, you need the education in HOW this diet works so you make educated decisions about what you’re eating.


Exercise: BBG

Y’all know I am obsessed with BBG. I have been doing BBG on/off for the past four years, and there’s one reason why I stick to it – it works. Yes it’s hard, yes it’s a challenge, but for only 3 workouts a week for under 30 minute, this program changes your body.


If you aren’t familiar with how BBG works, it’s a 12 week program where you complete High Intensity Interval Training circuits three times a week. Each workout is only 28 minutes of work. The other days of the week you typically parttake in a low intensity workout.


I am wrapping up BBG week 12 this week, and will start it again in a week (I like to give my body a break in between rounds with light cardio and yoga). I will say I am considering buying the SWEAT app this year so after the next round of BBG I can try some other programs, I’ll keep you posted if I decide to go for it.


In general though, my goal for 2019 is to exercise 5 days a week, and this is my planned routine:

  • Monday: BBG (usually legs and cardio)
  • Tuesday: low intensity workout 30 minutes (walk outside, go on the elliptical, walk on an incline) + abs
  • Wednesday: BBG (usually arms and abs), if time I like to do about 15 minutes of walking after
  • Thursday: low intensity workout + abs
  • Friday: BBG (usually full body)
  • Saturday and Sunday: do something active with Brandon and Tira! Walks, hikes, yoga, etc!

*Note: sometimes I like to do interval sprints or long runs on Tuesday and Thursday instead of low intensity workouts. I just listen to my body and consider my mental health and try to do what I think it needs!

This is from four years ago when I first did BBG (picture on the right is after completing the first 12 week round of BBG)! I didn’t actually think I would stick to it, so I didn’t think I would ever share the picture on the left. But here I am, putting it out there on the internet LOL

I know sometimes determining a diet and exercise routine can be overwhelming, especially if it’s been a while since you committed to your health goals. I hope that my own goals help give you some clarity to how I have found success, and hopefully inspire you to commit to your health this year. Let me know if you decide to give any of these tips a try!

Per usual, Tira has to make sure she ALWAYS is the center of attention. Have y’all noticed how often she sneaks her way into my photos LOL

The biggest piece of advice I can give is that the hardest part is getting started! But once the ball gets rolling, sticking with your health goals becomes SO much easier!

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5 thoughts on “Health Goals for 2019: Diet & Exercise

  1. Thank you for this! Just downloaded the F Factor app. I started following you on IG for teaching ideas (I’m also a hs bio teacher) but just wanted to say I am loving your new blog direction! Happy New Year!


    1. You are so welcome!! I hope you love F-Factor!! Thanks for following along, even as I’ve changed my blog direction. Seriously means so much!!


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