Archives for category: Fitness

I know it’s spring but it feels like summer here in Michigan.  We have had record-breaking temps lately.  Here is a refreshing treat that even my little one approves of.  I offered her a sip of my smoothie and she ended up downing the whole thing making head back to the blender.

I know there is tons of recipes for smoothies out there but I am really into this combination lately.  I don’t normally like to use supplements either.  I would rather get my greens from spinach or kale in a smoothie but I am out of both and I had this on hand.

I won this bottle from Gabby Reece’s website last year.  It is a great product in my opinion.  It tastes better than any other “greens” product I have tried.

Here is the recipe:

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 scoop Catie’s Organic Greens
  • 1 scoop Jay Robb protein powder (vanilla)

Give it a whirl in the blender and enjoy, unless a pre-schooler decides she wants it.

It was great after my elliptical workout.  I can’t say enough about using an elliptical machine.  It gives me a great cardio workout and keeps my IT band and runners knee feeling pretty good.  I’m not quite back to running yet.  I think I should be soon and when I do I am not training for anything for a while.  I just want to enjoy running again. 🙂

Have a great day!  Go on a  nice run for me too.  🙂

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This morning I set out to make a new green drink.  I planned on using grapefruit as one of the ingredients.  I peeled him, and  got out all of my other ingredients including my old blender.

I decided to have just one bite before loading it all in the blender.

It was like saying “I’ll have just one chip!”  I ended up devouring the whole grapefruit membranes attached and all!  Normally I peel each section after peeling the grapefruit skin off!  I must have needed some C or something.  It was the best tasting grapefruit I can ever remember!

Anyway, this week I plan on doing the following:

Monday-Tabata/yoga streatching

Tuesday-Elliptical/IT streatching

Wednesday-Tabata

Thursday-Elliptical/IT streatching

Friday-Tabata

Saturday-Elliptical and yoga

All the Tabata workouts will be from, you guessed it Gabby Reece.

This is pretty much my schedule every week.  Tabata/circuit and cardio.  I am just writing it out this week, because my knee is feeling pretty good and I need to tell myself not to run just yet.  This is the point where I add running in, just when my knee is almost better.  The key word here is almost.  I want to go at least one more week (maybe more) of cross-training before I try running again.  I’m sticking to it!  🙂

After my workouts I like to hit the shower.

I received this body polish (among a whole slew of other products) as a prize from one of Gabby Reeces challenges.

I was reluctant to use it.  I hate using lotions (I don’t like the feeling of it on my hands) and I am not a bubble bath kind of person.  Get in the shower, get out.  I am not a pampering person!

Since I had this product since last summer, I decided that I should probably use it.  Oh my goodness!  It was the best thing ever!  It exfoliates, moisturizes and makes your skin look amazing!  After trying it, I used it sparingly.  I was at the end of the jar and did not want to think about how much it might actually retail for.  Then I read the ingredients.  Pretty much oils, sugar, and dried embellishments.  I decided to make my own!

To make a sugar scrub:

  • 1 cup sugar (any kind, mix and match)
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • dried flowers or herbs

Mix it together and you have a great scrub!   It’s very invigorating after a tough workout.  I just cleaned out my sugar scrub jar and filled it up again.

I filled it with sugar and dried lavender.

Mixed in my olive oil.

Now I have a great scrub that looks and performs like the original, with stuff I already have in my pantry and my garden.  🙂

Here are a few tips:

  • You will probably want to use a plastic container in case you drop it in the shower (slippery oil and glass do no mix).
  • If you do use glass scoop out a small amount into a plastic cup to bring in the shower.
  • Make small batches so you can use it up ( I have read it lasts about a month or more).
  • Avoid getting water in the jar (I have read it prevents rancidity, but my damp hand in the jar did not seem to matter much.  I think they mean don’t flood it with shower spray etc.  Keep it closed and away from water.).
  • If giving as a gift, please keep in mind Peoples allergies!
  • Use it on your body.  I would not use it on my face.  I have very sensitive skin!  (In highschool my friend put vitamen E oil on my face because she loved what it did for her skin, and I broke out for a week.)

Sorry gentlemen, if this is not for you maybe you have a mother, daughter, sister, or loved one that might appreciate it.  It’s super easy to do.  A small canning jar with this stuff in it would be a nice gift!

I hope you all have a great day!

This morning after my workout (elliptical again), I decided to have another one of my green drinks.  I also had some fresh strawberries and raspberries that I needed to use up.  I made a puree and combined the two.  The result was so beautiful!

I had it with some oatmeal.

I love all the mottled colors on the chia seeds.

For lunch it was the left over salmon.  Lately I am into multi-grain bread as you have been seeing lately.  Toasted, with cream cheese, and topped with salmon is a delicious and quick lunch or snack!  Filling too.  🙂

For dinner I was feeling my Irish roots (that and I had some left-over mashed potatoes to use up). I made Boxty (Potato Pancakes).  They are so light!  You use egg white and whirl it all up.  So tasty!

They were topped off with a Apple-Cherry Sauce!

I finished the meal off with some Irish white cheddar and an apple.  It was a great Irishy meal!  I guess a warm up for next month.  🙂

My knee is feeling a bit better than last week but still not 100 percent.  I am excited for my circuit workout tomorrow in a Tabata style.  It’s a Gabby Reece one of course.  The one I have planned has lots of my favorite moves!

I’m not sure what else the day will bring.  Have a great night!

Hello!  Happy Valentines Day!

This morning I started my day with some cardio.  Today is my cardio day and I chose to do the elliptical machine (my Valentines day present from my husband!).  I have not used one in years.  My body knew it too!  I think I am a fairly fit individual but after a 30 minute training program I was dripping in sweat!  I am not used to this type of workout.  It was great and my knee felt wonderful afterward!

I read that this is a good sub for running.  With IT band problems like I have, sometimes biking can irritate it.  I am so happy the elliptical worked.  I felt great this morning.  After the workout I had a great green drink!

I was inspired by a Costco blender demo.  I did not end up with the blender (one day I would love a vitamix! Not on display at Costco, I just want one. :)) but I walked away with a great drink combo idea.  It was not a combo I would have come up with but I am glad I discovered it!

Into my 10-year-old blender (she gives it her blending best)  went the following:

  • Two giant handfuls of baby spinach
  • 1/2 a large apple
  • 1/2 an orange
  • 1 TBS of chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup of filtered water (or more as needed)

Whirl it up and you have a great drink. It’s really fresh and has such a beautiful color!  With the seeds in it reminded me of a kiwi.

I paired it with some of my multi-grain bread and crunchy peanut butter topped with golden flax seeds!

Here are some of my other eats so far this week:

You gotta love a good old PB&J sometimes!

Chicken quasadilla!

Last night I was craving a simple meal and this fit the bill!

I was also going through my pictures last night (trying to empty my SD card) and I came across these pictures I don’t think I got a chance to show you.  If I did sorry for the repeat, I just love seeing the thyme go from being in the snow to in my dish, and did not want to delete them before sharing.

My thyme peaking out of the snow.

It still looks great when picked!

Don’t you love the color of the thyme on the pizza sauce I made? The purple and green of the thyme are so pretty!

The sun was shining yesterday morning (a rare sight in Michigan) and was illuminating some ice cycles that I tthought looked beautiful!

Well I hope you all had a great Valentines Day.

Talk to you soon!

I love granola!  I love it with milk, on yogurt, straight out of the container, you get it.  I especially love granola that is crunchy with big clusters in it.

I have been on a hunt for a clumpy, crunchy granola recipe for quite some time.  Usually I get some recipes that do not clump at all, don’t have much flavor, or seem too oily.  I also like making my food when I can.  Especially stuff that normally comes in packages.  If I can replicate it, I am happy.

I have been working with one recipe for a long time that I felt had potential.  I tweaked it some more this last time I made it with some great results.

Look!  I made clumps!

They are fairly decent in size!

The trick to the clumps, I found in applesauce!

Here is what I did:

  • 4 C rolled oats
  • 1 C almonds smashed
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 C natural applesauce
  • 1/2 C honey
  • 3/4 C brown sugar

Have a toddler mix all the ingredients in a very large bowl.   Dump it all out on a baking sheet and throw it in a 250 degree oven and stir it every 15 minutes.  It took me about 1 hour and 45 minutes.  It’s trial and error.  I stopped about 15 minutes early to let it cool (put it on two to three sheets to cool it) and it was not as crunchy as I like, so back in the oven it went!  I was a bit heavy-handed with the apple sauce so that would make a difference too.

Now I have some for the pantry!

I have been loving to eat it out of a bowl with dried tart cherries!  I recently read that tart cherries are good for reducing inflammation.  I enjoy eating them so if they help with my knee then even better!  (I am ignoring the fact that they have sugar in them which I do know increases inflammation.  :))

My knee is still not feeling great.  It’s not as bad as it was just after I tried my marathon schedule for a few weeks.  I have been doing my Gabby Reece Tabata workouts three days a week and on the other three days I have normally been running.  Last week I did not even attempt to run on my scheduled days.  I just did stretching, icing, yoga etc.  I did run a bit this week and so far it went ok.  I could not go very far and I did more of a walk run.  One minute of walking to one minute of running for about 25 minutes or so.  I read that doing it that was is a good way to get back into it.  I have never tried it before so why not give it a go!

If you have ever had IT band issues and have had success with anything whether it’s stretches, exercises, supplements, or anything else you think helped (other than not running :)) I would love to know.

I think I may have found something that will help me.  I was doing hip drop exercises and my left hip (the bad one) was incredibly tight when doing this.  I never thought I had an issue with flexibility. In fact, one doctor told me I had great flexibility in my hips.  I guess I do for most exercises, but when I tried this one it was not easy to do.  This gives me hope.  If I work on this area in addition to the other stuff I am trying, it just might work!

That’s enough rambling for the night.  Let me know if you try making the granola and how it worked for you.  I am so proud of this batch!

Have a great night everyone!  I’ll talk to you soon.  🙂

Hello,

It’s been a while since I have written.  As you know I have been working on intuitive eating.  I read a book about it back in July of 2011 and it spoke to me.  I have been working on it ever since.

I had many times since reading it where I felt out of control and thought it was not working.  I had to go back and re-read the book (which I checked out from my local library) and it helped.  Before reading this book, I always thought there was something wrong with me.  I could not understand why I ate the way I did.  It was all or nothing with me.  My husband did not think I had anything wrong with me.  He said I have been like that ever since he has known me.  He always thought that since I maintained a healthy weight I was ok.  For someone who has never gone through it, it’s hard to understand.

Each time I had a binge episode it was due to being restrictive in some way:  Keeping my calories to a certain number, eliminating food groups/types (gluten, sugar, etc), signing up for food/health challenges.  Sometimes I would have a trigger and just not care.  I would give in knowing exactly what I was getting into and doing.  I have totally given in to the intuitive eating idea.  I can see how it takes time.  Little by little I have allowed myself to.

First I dropped my food checklists, I stopped measuring food so much, and I have stopped weighing myself often (several times a day).  I have been weighing myself about 2 times a month.  This has been the biggest thing for me.  I did not think I would be able to give up this one.  My weight has pretty much held steady for about 6 months (I fluctuated a bit with the holidays and my thyroid dropping, but have come back to normal with normal eating not restricting).   It’s nice not seeing the fluctuations from day to day when you don’t  weigh yourself often and wondering what is causing it (even though I know it is normal to fluctuate due to water retention, glycogen stores etc.)  I don’t use the numbers on the scale to celebrate a weight loss or send me into a calorie restricting mode from a higher number.  I am able to listen to my body and give it what it wants.

Some days I eat no meat, some days I do.  Some days I fill up on veggies and fruits and other days I need my bread/carb fix.  Some days I need candy or sweets, other times I don’t!  Some times it’s a bit of everything.  It’s so interesting.  I am eating like my 3 year old.  I am sure I have a ways to go.  Ideally I have always liked my weight at about 5-10lbs lighter.  I am curious to see if eating this way for a year or so will get me there.  Like I said I have had some bumps along the way so without the bumps I wonder what will come.  It’s possible that I am exactly where I need to be, a healthy weight for me

I am feeling balanced with my food.  Now exercise.  I have had problems in the past with my IT band causing pain in my knee.  As a result, my running was put on hold.  It allowed me to try other activities and forms of exercise.  As my knee got better I started to run more often (three days a week) and doing Tabata/circuit (three days a week) workouts.  I was doing what exercises I liked the best.  I even took it a step further and recently tried training for a marathon.  Not the best idea for me, but I was so excited about it.  I got through two weeks and my knee is now mad at me once more.  During those two weeks I felt mentally awesome, but I should have been listening to my physical body.  So with food I think I have found balance (In the past even claiming that has sent me on a binge, but it feels different now, I’ll be ok. J) but now I need to get it with my exercise.  I am taking it easy this week.  Lot’s of stretching, icing, ibuprofen, and some strength training.  No running for now, maybe next week.  This recent strain on my knee opened me up to listening to my body in other ways.  Over the past few days, I have left my exercise feeling better than when I started (my IT band was very tight when I started the workout and loose after), not overly exerted and having an extra sore knee which sometimes I am guilty of.  Just because I am not working out as vigorously this week does not mean I will gain weight.  It just means I will eat less.  I am learning that the body is brilliant and you can trust it.

I also have been feeling very angry about commercialism.  Someone always wants to sell you something.  Everywhere I go!  I can’t even pump gas anymore without a TV on the pump telling me I need to buy something!  I paid cash for something at a store and had to answer several questions on the debit/credit keypad related to my shopping experience and my potential to refer someone to the store!  It’s too much!  There were times recently when I felt like I could really use the advice of a professional in the area of intuitive eating.  I looked into various areas of it and decided I did not have an extra $200.00 for a 45 minute session or money to spend on the other options.  If you have some great information, and you know how to help someone, should it cost that much?  I am not judging, it just left me feeling very disappointed that I could get help if I spent a bunch of money and realized that I was the one that could help myself with advice from the book which I checked out for free and read.

So I am sharing my story in hopes that it helps someone else.  I found out about intuitive eating on another persons blog and it has helped me tremendously.  I am not a doctor, a dietitian, or a psychologist/therapist, but this is what has worked for me.  If you need to seek the help of a professional, please do.  For me it was more of making my self do the work suggested in the book little by little.   It’s been a long road for me and I feel so much better and I know I will continue to.

Editors Note:  I wrote this last week.  I did make it through the Super Bowl and ate normally.  I also got a phone call this morning from my endocrinologist saying that my thyroid is still too low.  They increased the dose of my medication.  This is good because I have been feeling lazy and cold again.  Now I know there is a reason for it!  J  I also have recovered from my marathon attempt.  My knee IT band is tight again but not with the pain that I had last week.

Here are some of the dishes/items I have been eating lately.  You can see a wide range of foods from meatless meals to meaty hamburgers.  The important thing for me is to eat when I am truly hungry and to stop when I am full.  It sounds very simple for some, but for others it’s a bit more complicated.

Chicken Stir-Fry!

Sometimes you just need a burger!

A salad with spinach, berries, feta, and balsalmic vinagrette.

Multi-grain bread stuffed with Gouda cheese.  A new obsession of mine!

Hearty beef and barley soup.

Veggie and berry platter.  So good and colorful!

Chicken curry on white rice.  What a nice change up for me!

That’s all for now.  Have a great night and I will talk to you soon!

Hello there!

In keeping up with my trying to go meatless more often and still make my carnivore husband happy, I made a Cuban Bean and Rice dish.

Here it is simmering!

Simmering some more…

It took about 15-20 minutes to simmer.  I was hungry, but it was worth it!  I really enjoyed this dish!  I ate it with some green beans to make an extra “beany” meal and get some green in.

My husband even enjoyed it and would eat it again! Yay!  One dish to add to the list.  🙂

For dessert, (by my daughters request) we made some cornbread.  She is the “dumper” and the mixer.  It was the best one we have made yet!

Earlier in the day I had my avocado egg mixture on top of some lettuce and tomatoes.  It was great as a salad dressing!  I got the idea to top a salad from themindoffreya.  She used my recipe to top a caesar salad.

That’s all for tonight.  I hope you all had a great day.  🙂

Talk to you later!