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xoxo, Kerri O.

FitViews Reviews

When I started my blog almost 2 years ago as Adventures in Dietland one of my main focuses was reviews. I personally found that wading through hundreds of reviews on a specific product, or worse, wading through the 5 that sound like they were written by the author/company ceo's mother, to be extremely frustrating to say the least. I hoped to create a place where people could get to know me...the reviewer. Recently when I asked my Dietland readers their favorite thing about my blog, the number one answer was: my honesty. That made me feel great!

Now, I've changed my blog to FitViews, but it's still the same me, and I still plan to focus a lot on reviews. I wanted to put up this post to give a little general information about my reviews and as reference for people reading my reviews. It will also be linked to in the Reviews page of this blog and most review posts.

Please note: I am not a trainer, nutritionist, or any type of health professional. What you read in all my reviews are my personal experiences and opinions.

First, I will always be completely honest with my opinion of products. Yes, often companies send me free products to review and/or giveaway. Or pay me for my time to try out and write my review of their product. As a stay at home mom that homeschools my children, my only contribution to our household finances is through my blog. I see nothing wrong with this. But on the same hand, I also often purchase things for review on my own, out of my own pocket. No matter how a product comes into my hands I am always completely honest. My integrity and that of my blog are extremely important to me. I am unwilling to jeopardize those in the interest of 'keeping a company happy'.

Second, I strive to give as much information as possible on a product, DVD, book, etc without giving away everything. For instance, if I review a cookbook I will give as much info as I can, but I won't give out recipes. I feel like the author is owed that respect.

Third, a little personal background on myself:
  • 5' 6" tall, 175 pounds, 35 year old female.
  • I consider myself an intermediate, bordering on advanced exerciser. I have ran 1 marathon and can do intense workouts such as Insanity.
  • When I say I lift 'heavy' when I lift, for me this means 10-20 pound dumbbells.
  • I always workout at home or outside. Never at a gym.
  • I use a Polar RS300X SD Watch to monitor my heart rate and track calories burned in workouts.

I give all of this information for your reference in comparing my results with a workout. For instance, if I burn 400 calories in a workout, I am at an advanced fitness level for some and yet still a little heavier (for example, when I do jump moves I'm lifting more body weight than someone who weighs less). So my calories burned may be more than yours would be in a given workout; depending on your personal situation. But you can still use my calories burned as comparison from workout to workout. 

Last, my FitViews rating system:
1 Star: hated it.
2 Stars: it didn't wow me, don't recommend.
3 Stars: Average. Good.
4 Stars: Liked it, would recommend to a friend.
5 Stars: WOW. Love it.

I hope all of this is helpful for everyone reading my future reviews!

Trending on FitViews

KETO Hot Cocoa Pancakes

OK, I know I've been on quite the low carb pancake tangent lately, but THESE! Seriously, these are yummtastic. Yummazing? Ya, they're really good. They just might be my favorite recipe I've ever done. Ever. OK, that might be my paleo apple crisp recipe, but that's not low, I wonder if I could tweak that low carb...

That would be brilliant!

You know, bloggers area always talking seo this and seo that (seo stands for search engine optimization if you're not a blogger) and I'm just over here yammering. I'm pretty sure when google's spider crawlers (anyone shiver at that word picture? eesh) get to FitViews they just think, "Yeesh, move along. Nothing to see here." Ha ha ha!

Anyway, pancakes. KETO Hot Cocoa Low Carb Pancakes no less. So good. 

As I've mentioned before I'm back to low carb (keto actually) and developing new recipes to make it easier to stick with. I find I just plain feel great when I eat ketogenic, and I definitely h…

KETO Cocktails: The Lemon Drop

I'm starting a new series here on FitViews! FitGirl Cocktails. I love a good glass of red wine now and then, I mean it's practically a health food, right? ;) But sometimes I just want a cocktail. I'm all for moderation and having a drink now and then, but I'm just not down with the calorie, carb, and sugar counts of some of my favorites. Seriously, have you ever looked them up? Eek. So, I've set to work at converting my favorite cocktail recipes to be more keto diet friendly!

The first cocktail recipe I'm tackling is the lemon drop. I used to love these, but haven't had one in years because of the sugar in them. In my early twenties I had a friend who used to make them for me all the time. We would have a shaker full of these, a good dinner, and a chick flick on a weeknight, it was kind of bliss. Her recipe called for so. much. SUGAR though! Looking back I think she may have used a wee bit more sugar than most, but they were really good.

I think my keto-ized …

30 Easy Prep and Pack Whole30 Lunch Recipes

The Whole30Program is amazing. I highly recommend it. Every time I've done a Whole 30 I have felt AMAZING by the end. It's a very empowering experience. It is not however an easy one. Mostly because the food prep can take much more time if you're used to grab and go options. A little planning ahead and you can definitely make it through the 30 days.

When it comes to Whole30 lunches, 3 things worked best for me:

Quick and easy salads.Prepping food on Sunday.Cooking too much at dinner and eating leftovers for lunch the next day.
I thought I'd share 30 of the awesome Whole30 lunch recipes I've found from my favorite bloggers (and a few from me!). I've included all three options I listed above. Some quick and easy salads, some to prep an entire recipe on the weekend and then portion them for lunches that week, and some to be cooked for dinner and the leftovers packed for lunch the next day. Play around and see what works best for you.

This list of 30 Whole30 Lunch Reci…

KETO Sweet Cinnamon Pancakes

I'm completely obsessed with keto pancakes lately. Oh, you've caught on to that? Well, these Sweet Cinnamon Low Carb Pancakes are a seriously tasty addition. They're a quick and super easy breakfast option.  Whether you're getting bored on your egg fast or just a low carb or keto style eater these are for you! With only 4 grams of carbs for the ENTIRE RECIPE, they'll fit nicely into your plan.

This recipe makes 3 or 4 decent sized pancakes and comes in at 340 calories according to my tracking in My Fitness Pal. I generally eat the whole thing and double the batch if hubby wants some too. It easily doubles or triples or feed however many you'd like. I love to make a giant batch on Sunday and have them ready for the week. Just reheat in the microwave and go.

Low Carb Sweet Cinnamon PancakesFor this recipe you'll need:
A mixing bowl (I like to use a large glass measuring cup to easily pour the batter in the skillet), a hand mixermeasuring spoons

Jillian Michaels BodyShred Full Review

I have to say my two months of BodyShred flew by! It seems like I just started yesterday. Ah, time flies while you're having fun. Right? OK, in this full review post, I hope to give you a good overview of exactly what the BodyShred program is as well as my thoughts and opinions on the program. So, is Jillian Michaels BodyShred hype or help? Let's chat...

Jillian Michaels BODYSHRED is Jillian's latest total-package fitness program. This set includes:

What's in the box:BodyShred Fitness Guide
BodyShred Meal Plan
BodyShred Rotational Calendar
BodyShred "Let Them See You Sweat" Workout Towel
     8 - Shred Style Circuit Workouts
       1. Launch
       2. Rise
       3. Amplify
       4. Escalate
       5. Conquer
       6. Triumph 
       7. Zenith
       8. Apex
     2 - Straight Cardio Workouts
       1. Fire Up
       2. Ignite
    Plus, bonus workout Opus and a disc on the cast and teaching the moves. So, a total of 12 DVDs are included in this set.

The BodyShred Workouts

Paleo Smoky Grilled Pineapple Burgers

Since going Paleo my family has fallen even more in love with our grill. Paleo and grilling just work well together. The past couple of years I've even been stepping outside my grilling comfort zone more and more. Grilling things I'd never thought to have grilled before and trying new flavor combinations. I have to say I'm pretty thrilled with the results of most of my flavor experiments. 

In the past I'd never have thought to grill fruit, but it's amazing. Grilling fruit and adding it to traditionally savory dishes? Brilliant.

Oh yes, and? New rule: every burger recipe for the rest of forever must contain grilled pineapple. OK, maybe more of a guideline. It's a seriously delicious combination though.

This Smoky Grilled Pineapple Burger is always a crowd-pleaser at my house. It's not only Paleo, but Whole30, glutenfree, lower carb, and clean eating friendly. I promise you won't miss the bun! 

Smoky Grilled Pineapple Burger Recipe Ingredients
2 lbs Lean Grass-…

Easy Paleo Mashed Sweet Potatoes

This Easy Paleo Mashed Sweet Potatoes recipe was sponsored by Puritan's Pride.
Growing up the only encounter I had with sweet potatoes was at Thanksgiving dinner. I hesitate to even call them sweet potatoes though. They were more like sugar coated sugar, with a side of sugar. Seriously!
The recipe was to coat a baking dish in margarine, add diced sweet potatoes, top with more margarine and a healthy heaping of brown sugar. Bake. And then? At the end you top the whole thing with a bag of marshmallows and bake again.
Blech! Needless to say I was never fond of sweet potatoes.
When I first went paleo I decided to reacquaint myself with sweet potatoes. They’re a great paleo-friendly carb source. I must confess the thought made me shudder, but I persevered. I tried them simple. Baked. I was so shocked. They're so good!
Now, I love sweet potatoes. They’re a go-to side dish for family dinners. Not only are they delicious, but they’re good for us and easy to make. The funny thing about sweet…

Paleo Peppermint Mocha Coffee Creamer Recipe

It's just not the holidays for me without a Starbucks peppermint mocha (or white chocolate peppermint mocha, mmm). I generally splurge once or twice during the holiday season with the real thing. Since going keto, however, I'm not sure if I will. Sometimes the sugar just isn't worth it!

Problem is I like them, miss them, and would really enjoy them all season long!
So..... I decided I wanted to tackle the peppermint mocha and come up with a KETO Paleo-friendly version. With this simple recipe, I can have a peppermint mocha anytime.

Not only is this recipe Keto Paleo, but it's also Whole30, gluten-free, vegan, primal, and 100% junk-free.

KETO Paleo Peppermint Mocha RecipeIngredients:
1 can Organic Canned Coconut Milk(Regular, NOT light. Seriously, ew.)
1/3 cup Organic Cocoa Powder
2 to 3 Tablespoons Organic Grade B Maple Syrup (Optional, leave out for keto or Whole30.)
1/2 to 1 teaspoon Organic Peppermint Extract(Depending how pepperminty you like it. I do 1/2 teaspoon)
1 teaspo…

Keto Paleo Friendly Coffee Creamer Recipe

Going keto paleo has me missing one thing: the organic grass-fed half-and-half I'd been having in my coffee. Since going paleo over a year ago I've searched and searched and just never found anything else I love in my coffee. I'd just about given up on a keto paleo-friendly coffee creamer!

I was almost to resign myself to black coffee forever, but then I decided to resort again to trying to make my own. This version is simple and quite delicious. Not only is it keto paleo, but Whole30 and 21 Day Sugar Detox friendly as well.

Keto Paleo Cinnamon Vanilla Coffee Creamer
1 can Organic Canned Coconut Milk(the kind in the carton just won't do it)
1 teaspoon Cinnamon Vietnamese Organic
1 teaspoon Organic Pure Vanilla for 100% Whole30 compliant swap for vanilla powder
2 teaspoons raw local honey or Organic Maple Syrup (optional, leave out for KETO, Whole30, or 21DSD)

Blend all ingredients well in your blender. Store in the refrigerator (the cinnamon tends to set…

Paleo Spaghetti and Meat Sauce

Have you ever blown up a spaghetti squash in the microwave? I have. Multiple times. I don't recommend it. It's quite the mess to clean up. And the noise? Will likely make you jump.
I kept seeing people say to just cook the whole spaghetti squash in the microwave. Don't bother cutting it, they said, it's so quick and easy, they raved. 
Ya, no. I blow it up.
So. You've been warned. If you do dare to put the thing whole in your microwave, at least make sure you have the camera set up...
Oh, and maybe poke a "vent" hole in it very carefully with a knife.
Paleo (Whole30) Spaghetti with Meat Sauce:

Ingredients1 spaghetti squash
2 lbs lean grass-fed ground beef
1- medium yellow onion, chopped
1- 14.5 oz can organic fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1- 6 oz can organic tomato paste
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 teaspoons Celtic sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons organic basil
2 teaspoons organic oregano
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon organic granulated garlic