Swap It Out Sunday

There is nothing like ruining healthy, nutritious vegetables with ranch dip!  There is nothing better than a good snack of fresh broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, celery, tomatoes, etc!  But think twice before you load up on that dip…

Dips

Dips

Personally, I think the hummus tastes better any way and comes in countless varieties.  There is a difference of 50 calories per serving between the two and the hummus has a lot more nutritional benefit to offer!  Next time you go for a veggie snack, reach for that hummus first (your bikini will thank you)!

Finally got my race photos together from Atlanta.  My faces are priceless as always!

race

Race2

Last day for this giveaway y’all!  Please give me some good challenge ideas!!  We haven’t gotten much response (so even better chance of a win)!

Worth it? I Think Yes

One of my very best friends from home came into town Thursday night and stayed until this morning.  I had a class Friday morning so we just hung out the first night and planned to have a real good time on Saturday.

My friends JK and Lindsey and their other halves joined us all our for dinner at a new restaurant downtown called The Rarebit.  The food was really good and fairly inexpensive but the drinks were outrageous!  My drink actually cost more than my food which kinda blew my mind.  Good to know for next time though so we can just eat there and drink somewhere else.

After dinner we did some bar hopping around town.  Saw a good (well I thought good, Casey is a much harder critic) band, watched the basketball games and proceeded from there.  I can honestly say that it is one of the most fun nights I have had in Charleston.

funnight

However, a really late, fun night almost always spells a really late, really lazy, not so good morning.  All were true today, but for once it was worth it.  My only regret was how beautiful it was today and how this body was NOT going for a run.  You win some you lose some I guess.

Tomorrow I will return to normal, it is crazy how one day of drinking and not eating so great and not exercising (minus walking Ryan around downtown for a bit) can make you feel so terrible.  I feel like I have gained 10 pounds since yesterday even though I know that isn’t possible.  Thank god we only go do things like this once in a blue moon!!

Don’t forget, tomorrow is the last day to enter for the give away.  Post your best fitness challenge idea as a comment to win a slow cooker!!

Who Doesn’t Love Brunch

Today we had our second meeting of the book club.  We talked about the book for exactly 0 minutes.  Whoops.  We did however pick our next book and have a fantastic breakfast. We picked The Secret Life of Cee Cee Wilkes by Diane Chamberlain.  I read it last year and I could not put it down.  Seriously, if you are looking for a good book that you will fly though I recommend this one hands down!

For breakfast I made:

French Toast Bake

French Toast Bake

I based the recipe for the French Toast Bake off of this recipe.  I made some swaps to make it a little lower cal without changing the integrity of the dish.  I don’t think anyone knew the difference!

Ingredients:

4 tbsp melted margarine/butter

2 cans pillsbury cinnamon rolls

5 eggs

1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

1/4 cup skim milk

3 teaspoon cinnamon

2 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup sugar free syrup

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 375.

2.  Pour melted butter into bottom of 13×9 pan.

3.  Break each cinnamon roll into 4 pieces and arrange pieces evenly in dish.  Put icing aside for later.

4.  Combine all remaining ingredients in a bowl.  Pour mixture over cinnamon roll pieces.

5.  Bake 25ish minutes.

6.  Microwave icings for 10 seconds and pour over the top.

Nutrition: 12 servings; 274 calories, 13 g fat, 6g protein

You end up saving quite a few calories by making a few substitutions and no one will know the difference.

Super awesome bonus for the day.  One of the girls from my book club was heading for a run and to go to the gym after book club so we went together.  We did a nice 4 mile run ending at the gym where we did the Burpee Mania Workout.  It is so much more fun and challenging when you go with a buddy!!

Don’t forget about the give away for the best fitness and health challenge ideas!!

To The Beat of Your Own Drum

A few weeks ago I went to a running clinic and cadence was something that was talked about, ALOT!!  Then today I read an article in runners world about “Chi Running” and this highly emphasized the importance of cadence while running as well.

This spurred me to do some research before reporting what I had read and heard.  Ideal cadence ranges are reported between 170-180 steps per minute when counting both feet (85-90 if only counting one).  The idea behind the importance of cadence is:

  • You will have less steps if you are over-striding
  • You will have more if you are under-striding

Both of these scenarios can be problematic as far as injuries go.  So the cadence itself isn’t really what you are concerned with, it is what the cadence indicates which is what your stride length is like.

How to use this:

  • For the first few runs, the Runner’s World article suggested using a metronome to count off your steps which I think is a great idea.  However, the author continued to use this for a long time (which would drive me nuts eventually)
  • After a few runs, return to whatever you were used to during running (musics, audiobook, etc) but every five minutes or so, block off 30 seconds to count your strides.  So if you count your left foot only, you want to be between 40-45 steps.
  • As you start to learn how it feels, maybe just start out your runs being conscious of the steps and counting them out for a minute and then continue along your run.

 

 

 

I have always been concerned with my stride because I’m so short, it was great to have a way to monitor what I am doing and what I should be doing rather than trying to measure out each stride (thats just nuts).

If you are in Charleston, come meet for the Lululemon run group on King Street at 6:00, I’ll be leading the five mile route and this is a three mile option as well!  Happy running all!!

Don’t stop, they’ll catch you!!

Right now is pretty much the first time I have stopped moving since 8 am.  I started with a doctors appointment at 9 (that they didn’t actually get me in for until 9:40 and I had class at 10…I was freaking)!  Then class and meetings straight through until my neuro exam at 3.  P.S. To any of you teachers out there, there is nothing worse than having an exam  in the afternoon after having class all day (sincerely a stressed out student!).

After finishing my exam, I squeezed in a run and hit the gym for the Beach Ready Circuit.   I really pushed my run too hard and too fast (and it was incredibly windy) so I was pretty spent by the time I started lifting.  Of course this is a pretty challenging circuit too so I made it through but it was definitely not my best effort.

Then I raced home, showered and left to meet my friend Lindsey so she could try and make a final decision about her wedding dress…YAYYYYYY!!  Through this process I have decided that someone else will be picking my wedding dress, and planning the whole wedding, I’m just showing up…SO MUCH STRESS!!

In the craziness of the weekend, I totally forgot to update everyone on Scarlett’s shenanegans!!

Sunday, while I was feeling very sick to my stomach and awful she decided to eat my Michael Kors watch, I was soooo mad when I woke up.  But the fun certainly didn’t stop there.  She then decided that it was a good day for her first swim and jumped in a huge puddle and completely submerged herself and HER CAST that can’t get wet.  I wish I had been with it enough to snap a picture of her soaking wet because in hind sight it was pretty funny and cute but I was just too mad to think that at the time.  All I can say is its a good thing she is so stinkin cute or she may have had a new home by Sunday night.

Scarlett in the dog house

Scarlett in the dog house

Lastly!!  I know you guys have great fitness challenge ideas, I have thought of so many fun ones already so I urge you to leave them as a comment on the Give Away Post to win the slow cooker!!  Get creative y’all…can’t wait to see what you come up with!!

Yay for a Give Away!!

Recently, I have started using SlimKicker.com for my food and exercise log.  It has been awesome, especially because it appeals to my highly competitive nature (who of you guys would have guessed?!).

The site works as a food log just like other sites and apps, but heres the kicker (I’m so funny sometimes), there is a competition component to it.  This site gives you various challenges you sign up for and earn points.  You also get points for logging exercise, food, etc.  You can get friends on it and compete against one another to give you the extra edge to get ready for the upcoming bathing suit season.

SlimKicker also has lots of promo codes for health-related retailers such as Bowflex and many others.

Slow Cooker

Slow Cooker

 

They have also offered to give away this awesome slow cooker to whoever can come up with the best new challenge idea!!  Everyone loves a great cooker for soups, chili (on cold days like today), over night oatmeals, etc.

Ex: 20 push ups/day for 1 week

So I urge you to leave your awesome idea as a comment.  SlimKicker will chose their favorite idea at the end of one week and the brains behind it will win the slow cooker!!  GOOD LUCK!!  (SlimKicker has asked that entries be limited to those from the USA, if you are from outside the states, stay tuned for future give away opportunities).

Note: I do not work for and/or have received any incentives for providing this information and/or including their giveaway on my blog.  My opinions state above are completely my own.

Swap It Out Sunday

CHOCOLATE!!

CHOCOLATE!!

I pretty much require something sweet every night.  Seriously.  If we have nothing, I will eat plain mini marshmallows just to get the sweet taste in.

I used to be a three oreos and milk or ice cream or cereal every night girl but I knew that had to stop.  But that didn’t mean I had to deprive myself of the sweets that I loved, I just needed to find different sweets.

Jello sugar free pudding snacks were the perfect solution for me.  They are small, with few calories that really did the trick to satisfy my sweet tooth.  The other thing I have done is buy dark chocolate hershey’s kisses to keep in the fridge so after lunch I could pop one of those bad boys in and solve the sweet problem then for 20 calories.

For my oreos and milk I was consuming 390 calories.  The jello puddings are 60 calories.  That is a massive difference.  This change alone saved me 2,310 calories a week (a little less than a pound) and 120,120 over the course of a year –> thats 34 POUNDS y’all!!  HUGE, MASSIVE change!!

So next time you reach for the oreos think about your good old jello pudding instead for a lighter solution to your sweet fixation!

P.S.  Sorry I missed the SIOS last week, with the race and traveling it just had to give.

Disclaimer: You are now officially warned

run

I have shared this before, and I will share it again because it is how I am feeling now and I think it is a fantastic message, especially in light of my day.

After going to the Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Clinic today I am writing once again with a heavy heart and appreciation for the little things in life we take for granted.  For those of you who continue to follow my blog, know that you will get some “appreciate the life you have”, “life is a wonderful thing”, “we all really have it so easy”, etc posts from me.  Here is your fair warning!

Seeing the patients we see sometimes for physical therapy makes me realize how much I have lived my life in a bubble.  Not once in my life have I had to worry about being shot, or where my next meal would come from, how I would pay for my doctors appointments or the shoes on my feet. Never, not once, have I not been able to have everything I need to live my life in a healthy way and more.  Not to talk crap about my bubble, I loved my bubble, it was so warm and happy and devoid of the devastation that exists in the world.

What I need to do is take all of the opportunities my “bubble” has afforded me and help those whose bubble may have popped from the time they came into the world.  And I vow to you all now, I will do so!

Should the patient we saw today (spurring this whole post) continue to help himself and get the free care we can provide him, we are going to head up a serious fundraising effort to help get him medical necessities that can help him avoid simple health issues that can turn life threatening, quickly.

I am asking you all for your help, if you have done any major fundraising and have some great ideas that have worked for you, please, please, please share them!  

Let the Madness Begin

I admittedly couldn’t give two hoots about college basketball, until March madness, then I turn basketball crazy.  You can call me whatever mean spirited name you like for being like that, but I am always gung ho once the tournament begins.  Usually it is because I have a bracket made and I am a competitive human (bet you never guessed that about me)!

I was going to post my brackets here but I can’t get them small enough on my computer to get them to fit in a screen shot.  Both of mine are very different, and of course the one I have money on is doing worse, go figure.

In honor of the madness, I made a new circuit work out that nearly drove me mad.  This thing was hard y’all!!  I considered stopping a few times but sucked it up; seriously glad I did.  I know I am going to be hurting tomorrow.

Mission Impossible Circuit

Mission Impossible Circuit

I found some pictures online of questions I thought might be new.

Chop lift

Chop lift

Squat and reach, just add curl before the reach!

Squat and reach, just add curl before the reach!

Good luck with that one!

Hope your brackets are doing well so far!  Happy Thursday!

 

 

Burpees are my favorite…said no one ever!

My friend Jenna sent me this the other day and I died laughing.

womp womp

womp womp

I would certainly consume a lot less food if I knew their burpee equivalent, thats for sure!

Which has inspired me to make a new circuit work out that will include, you guessed it, BURPEES!  Check back tomorrow for the newest circuit (I like to test them myself before I post)!