Tag Archives: cardio

My staycation rocks!

First of all, I just want to thank all of you guys for your support over yesterday’s post. All of your comments made me feel so much better. I did manage to let go of most of the guilt and I ate a phenomenal burger. I also enjoyed some great company in the form of my husband. :)

Today was a great day! Tomorrow is the last day of our “staycation.” We are both going to be a little sad to have to go back to work, I think.

This morning I told my husband I was in the mood for pancakes for breakfast. I have a couple of recipes in my arsenal that we usually make. But my husband wanted to make me breakfast and he wanted to surprise me. This concept was very scary to me. I feel a need to be in control of every ingredient to monitor the nutrition. Usually when Corey wants to make me breakfast, I give him a recipe and he follows it accordingly!

I’m glad I trusted him because he did make excellent pancakes. He used this recipe from Allrecipes. The only change he made was to add a teaspoon of vanilla and to add fruit to the batter. He made several blueberry pancakes and several strawberry ones.

They were so delicious! I had never put strawberries in my pancakes before and I have no idea why. I loved it! The pancakes came out light and fluffy. They don’t have a lot of sugar so they weren’t very sweet, which I enjoyed. And the butter in the recipe gave them a wonderfully buttery taste.

Just a little side note: for the butter in most of my recipes (except maybe a few sweets like cookies and cakes), I use I can’t believe it’s not butter fat-free. I know, it’s horribly processed and this is probably the one thing that I eat that has this many ingredients. But I actually prefer the taste to real butter. I’m weird like that. ;)

After some relaxing and eating, I needed a workout. My quads were still sore from Sunday’s Jillian Michaels No More Trouble Zones workout. This workout was one of my new workouts for the month and I love it! It’s 50 minutes of pure strength training. My quads, thighs, abs, and triceps were so sore yesterday from the workout. My triceps and quads are still sore today. But that was not going to stop me from getting in some good cardio. I did a 25 minute Jillian Michaels kickboxing workout (can you tell I love her??), followed by 35 minutes on the elliptical. The elliptical may be boring, but it sure does make me break a sweat. :)

By the time my workout was complete and by the time I took a shower, it was time for lunch. I have been a little light on my veggies lately so I was craving a salad . . . a taco salad! I swear, that’s my favorite way to eat veggies.

The salad consisted of lettuce, taco meat with peppers and onions, salsa, and some refried beans. I ate this salad with some tortilla chips. Yummy!

Today was a beautiful 80 degrees so we did not want to spend the day indoors.

We took Callie to this little creek in the nearby park so she could run off some energy play. I didn’t realize that it was a little of a hike to the creek. It was over a mile there and back. Ordinarily, that would not have been an issue. But my quads were already sore from my morning workout. And the hike back to the car was mostly uphill. Not what I was in the mood for.

After spending some time at the creek and then doing some house cleaning, we were hungry. And tonight was pizza night. I love pizza night! We bought some whole wheat pizza dough at the Farmer’s Market last weekend. I had a couple of slices with pizza sauce, a little mozzarella cheese, some all natural pepperoni, and some red and green peppers.

The pizza was yummy. The only issue was that the crust was a little underbaked so there wasn’t any of the crispness that I enjoy. Next time we will bake it up a little more and I’m sure it will be fine. All in all, not a bad pizza.

After dinner, Corey and I went to a movie. I can’t remember the last time we went to a movie on a weeknight. A couple of weeks ago, both of us had bought a Groupon that would allow us to get 2 movie tickets on Fandango for only $9. What a deal! We decided that tonight was a great time to use it.

We went to see “Limitless.” There were only a few people in the theatre. The movie was a pretty good one. I thought the ending was a little abrupt for my taste, but it was still a decent movie.

Now we are both relaxing a little on the couch before going to bed. I got a little bedtime snack of Butter Toffee peanuts.

I bought these at the Farmer’s Market last weekend and they are so incredibly addicting. It’s hard to just grab a handful or two at a time. But I have a little self-control.

Now I am exhausted! All that time in the sun has made me so sleepy. Good night everyone!

Question: Do you still work out when your muscles are very sore? How do you cope with that?

Lost Hour

Hope everyone had a great weekend! Yesterday’s Internet-free Sunday was just as awesome as last weekend. I really feel that staying away from the computer all day brings my husband and me closer. We spend more time together, we actually get out of the house and away from the television a little bit, we even laugh more. Sundays are now my favorite day of the week. :)

Did Daylight Savings Time mess anyone else up? Corey took care of Callie and allowed me to sleep in. When I looked at the clock after waking up, it said 7:30. Believe me when I say I do not usually sleep that late. Talk about luxury! It wasn’t until a couple of hours later that I remembered about the time change and realized that it was actually 8:30 when I woke up. That lost hour really messed with my internal clock all day.

Corey started the day off by making me breakfast. I love that he loves to make me breakfast on the weekends. He made me Peanut Butter Waffles. Yummy!

After breakfast, we relaxed a little and then I was in the mood for a good workout. In the spirit of trying a new workout, I turned on the Jillian Michaels Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism DVD. I used to do this through Comcast On Demand all the time, but the On Demand version of the workout is only 20 minutes. The full DVD version is 45 minutes long.

I have only done this full length version once and that was quite a while ago. This workout is a killer! It is all cardio and is intense. I discovered about halfway through the workout that waffles are NOT a good pre-workout meal. They were sitting in my stomach like a rock and I was feeling quite nauseous. Unfortunately I had to stop about 20 minutes into it. My stomach just couldn’t take anymore.

After my brief workout, Corey and I both took a shower and got ready for a fun afternoon in the park! It was so incredibly beautiful yesterday. It was about 75 degrees. It felt like summer! Or maybe I should say that it felt like Spring. Summers in Georgia are about 100 degrees.

It's a beautiful day for a picnic!

Corey and I decided to take a picnic lunch to eat in the park. I think Callie was more excited than we were.

For lunch, I took a grilled bacon, lettuce, and cheese sandwich.

 For dessert, I had  a slice of Chocolate Chip Pumpkin bread (yes I actually had a few slices left after last week’s pig out) along with some strawberries.

I have missed strawberries so much and I really feel like Spring is around the corner with the arrival of fresh berries. They were on sale at Publix for only $1.67! Score. :)

Enjoying a strawberry

We brought some toys for Callie to play fetch with, along with some treats. However, she wasn’t interested in any of it.

She was more interested in sniffing the ground, eating grass, and chasing bugs. You know, the usual dog stuff. ;)

Callie chasing some tiny little bug

We spent a while in the park, just enjoying the sunshine and taking lots and lots of photos of Callie. We were in a few of the pictures as well.

I think she was annoyed with out impromptu photo shoots.

But isn’t she just the most photogenic dog ever??

I could be a bit biased. ;) We need to teach her the command, “Look at me.” Most of the time she refuses to look at us if we are snapping pictures. If she does happen to glance our way, we have to snap the picture as quickly as we can before we lose the opportunity.

A family shot!

After our wonderful afternoon in the park, I was ready to finish my workout. Honestly, it would have driven me crazy for the rest of the night if I had left the workout unfinished. The second half was just as intense as the first, but my stomach felt a lot more settled. So I still got a 45 minute workout in yesterday!

Last night we had the idea to have a pizza night. We bought a package with two 8″ pizza crusts from Whole Foods. Corey and I do not agree on pizza toppings, so it was nice that we could each have our own personal pizza.

I made a great white cheese spread for my pizza. I can’t eat very much mozzarella cheese because it gives me migraines. Since I am loving goat cheese, I decided to make a spread out of that and some ricotta cheese. It was so delicious that I was eating it out of the bowl with a spoon.

Goat Cheese and Ricotta Spread for a pizza (makes enough for one small 8″ pizza)

1/3 c. Ricotta cheese
2 oz. soft goat cheese
1/2 c. fresh spinach
basil, parsley, and other spices to taste

Mix all ingredients and spread on pizza. Can use this instead of pizza sauce or spread some on top of pizza sauce (like I did!). Yummy!

On top of my pizza crust, I had pizza sauce, my cheese spread, a couple of slices of Applegate all natural pepperoni, and some green pepper slices.

Corey was a little more nervous than I was about the crust. It was gluten-free and he was afraid he would miss the gluten. Turns out, he was right. Maybe it was just the brand of crust, but it was too dry and didn’t have much flavor. Corey ended up getting something else for dinner, but I just scraped the cheese and veggies off my crust and ate that. It was still very tasty.

I hope everyone else had a great Sunday. Are you coping well with the lost hour?

Pizza for Breakfast and Breakfast for Dinner

Today was a snow day for just about the entire state of Georgia.

cemetery covered in snow

We don’t get much snow here, so when we get a lot of it the whole state kind of shuts down. We got roughly 5 inches of snow and I was so thankful that today was my day off. I didn’t have anywhere to be so I could just enjoy the day. :)

Our street covered in snow (and ice)

I started with a recipe that I saw on Katie’s blog and I have seen it replicated a couple of times now. It’s called Pizzert. I am all about pizza for breakfast! For my recipe, I used half white and half wheat flour, some honey as my sweetener, applesauce, nonfat milk, and some blackberries as my fruit.

Yummy! It was so easy and filling (and tasty). I topped my slices with some Naturally Nutty vanilla almond butter. I ate half of the Pizzert and will save the other half for a quick breakfast later this week. On another note, I ran out of vanilla almond butter today so I quickly went on their website and ordered some more. I love their vanilla almond butter and I need some more STAT!

After breakfast (and a little frolicking in the snow with Callie), I wanted a good workout. Most days, I procrastinate and procrastinate until it’s the end of the day and I don’t feel like doing it. I wanted to get my workout done early, so I would have the rest of the day to play.

I did Jackie Warner’s total body circuit (43 minutes) and I tried the Biggest Loser Last Chance workout that was available from Exercise On Demand. Thank goodness for this feature because I get to try so many new workouts that way! As usual, the Jackie Warner DVD totally kicked my butt. But I feel myself getting stronger day by day. Today, I was actually able to complete most of the exercises (though not without a fair amount of huffing and puffing).

Today was a first for the Biggest Loser workout. I wanted a quick cardio workout just to balance everything out. The workout was 10 minutes (not including cool down). I have to say that I didn’t think I would like it at first. The first minute or two seemed to be a little too easy, especially the warm-up. The warm-up didn’t get my heart rate up that much. But before long, I was sweating and huffing and puffing and I was falling in love with the work out a little bit. I think that next time, I may do the cardio before the strength though. My legs were kind of exhausted from the many squats and lunges from my earlier workout, so I struggled with the jumps and squats of Biggest Loser. What I especially love is this workout is not run by Jillian Michaels or Bob Harper. It is run by real past contestants who have real bodies. I will keep this workout in mind next time I am short on time, but want to do something. Just because a workout isn’t 45 minutes doesn’t mean you aren’t getting benefits. Do you have a preference for doing strength before cardio? Or vice versa?

After my workout and a very long shower, I was ready for lunch. My body was craving salads. I don’t often crave veggies, so I won’t refuse my body what it needs. :)

I kind of threw a lot of stuff into a bowl: spinach, grape tomatoes, yellow pepper, a small handful of cashews, some corn, a link of spicy Italian chicken sausage I bought at Whole Foods yesterday, and I topped it with a couple of tablespoons of hummus. Mmm . . . it was tasty! It had protein, veggies, and healthy fats. Just what my body needed. Along with the salad, I had an unpictured piece of organic bread with the rest of my vanilla almond butter.

That salad was full of so much stuff that it actually kept me full for the rest of the afternoon. I love that! The rest of the afternoon was spent catching up on blogs and watching Law and Order: SVU.

Corey came home a little early from work and we decided to take Callie somewhere to play in the snow. The roads were horrible. Snow and ice everywhere. We decided to go to a cemetery that is next door and play there. I’m sure that sounds weird, but we walk along the path there all the time and it is a beautiful area.

Rewarding Callie with her favorite treat: cheese!

Callie playing with her new toy

Corey and I had fun watching Callie frolic and we were both taking lots of pictures. It was weird letting my husband take most of the pics, but he does have a degree in photography. So I guess he knows what he’s doing. ;) My job was to stand in one spot and try not to slip on the ice. I am extremely clumsy, so we were both worried about that. But I’m happy to report there were no injuries! I do have to give credit where credit is due though. Some of the pictures in this blog post are mine, but others are his. His pictures came out beautiful!

I think Corey and I only spent about 15 or 20 minutes playing around with Callie. At that point, we were both turning to ice. We also didn’t want Callie to get hurt on the ice or get too cold. I’m sure she would have liked to play forever, but it just wasn’t possible.

When we got home, we wanted something quick. I had not had bacon or eggs in a few days and I had a serious craving. So breakfast for dinner it was!

I had an egg, bacon, and cheese sandwich on multigrain bread. Along with the sandwich, I had a second egg on the side. All that playing in the snow made me starving!

Because the roads (and interstates) are so bad, I’m not sure if I will go into work tomorrow. At the very least, I will go in late. I’ll see how it goes. I hate to miss work, but I don’t feel comfortable driving on roads where people are getting stuck and are barely able to go above 5 mph.

Is anyone a college football fan? I’m not really a football fan period, but my husband graduated from Auburn so he is kind of into the big game right now. I am feeling so sore from my workout today. Jackie Warner and Jillian Michaels have both worked my core something good over the past couple of days. Now I’m going to feign interest in this game a little bit longer and hope for better conditions on the road tomorrow! Good night everyone!

New isn’t always better

I tried a new workout today. I have spoken before about my cardio boredom. Since today was my cardio day, I wanted to try a new workout. So what do I do when I want to try something new? I turn to Comcast On Demand of course. :)

Has anyone heard of a new workout called Piloxing? The description said it was a combination of Pilates and kickboxing. Sounds interesting, right? Wrong. Now maybe it was the instructor. I don’t know. What I do know is that the instructor went really fast in her moves and even worse, the moves weren’t making me break a sweat . . . . at ALL. The people doing the exercise with her also made these annoying sounds. They were supposed to be sounds of excitement, but they were just annoying. Granted, I only did about 7 minutes of the 20 minute workout, but there was no Pilates, just kickboxing. When she did a move that she called “driving a car,” I knew I had to get out of there. I stopped it and moved on to something else. Yech. Has anyone ever tried Piloxing? Maybe you had a better experience than I did.

But one new workout that I did enjoy was (surprisingly) Kim Kardashian’s Ultimate Butt Body Sculpt workout . It was a 20 minute workout in which she (along with an instructor) performed a LOT of squats and lunges. I love that the instructor took the time to point out correct form for the exercises. This workout KILLED. My thighs are screaming right now. The only issue I had was that Kim was wearing a low cut shirt and the camera kept doing weird shots at her chest or her crotch. Do they think guys are watching this? But it really was an amazing workout!

That’s all for now. So excited because Christmas is almost here . . . :)

Cardio Boredom

I definitely enjoy strength training more than cardio.

Breakfast: more Pumpkin Pancakes with some maple syrup

This is kind of funny because there was a time when I never did any strength training. I focused entirely on cardio because I was trying to lose weight and I figured that was the best way to do it.

 

Lunch: more leftover Pizza Pot Pie with an unpictured spinach salad and homemade Italian vinaigrette

Now that I am focusing more on strength, I find that I actually enjoy my workouts. On strength days, I look forward to my workout. Maybe it’s because lifting weights makes me feel strong. Sometimes I swear my biceps have grown an inch after one workout. :)

Snack #1: Trader Joe’s Triple Gingersnaps

However, on my cardio days I dread my workout. I know that it’s because there is very little variety. I have no motivation to run when it’s this cold. The elliptical has begun to bore me because I have done it for so long. So I do workouts On Demand that don’t seem that difficult and I pretty much just chug along. I can tell while I am working out that I’m just not pushing myself. How can I achieve better endurance if I’m not pushing myself as I should. What do you do to combat exercise boredom?

Snack #2: half a whole wheat bagel with a little butter and honey

Today was a strength day and honestly, I was looking forward to it all day. I had plans to do Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred, as well as her Quick Trouble Zones workout. My triceps and biceps were still sore from Monday’s workout, but I wasn’t going to let that stop me.

Delicious hodge podge of items: baked chicken strips, brown rice, corn, baby peas, and generous amounts of ketchup and mustard

I am kind of obsessed with Jillian Michaels workouts lately. There is something about lifting weights that makes me feel powerful. And when I can increase my weight or increase the number of reps that I am supposed to do, I feel like I am actually making progress. Forget the number on the scale because my muscles are going to be huge! :)

Here’s a random question: is it expected to give a Christmas gift to your postal carrier or garbage worker? This is my second Christmas living with my husband. As I mentioned before, we didn’t do many Christmas traditions last year. So this is the first time I’ve ran into this question. I was contemplating baking them cookies, but then I wasn’t even sure of the logistics required to give my gift to the garbage worker. Is anyone else giving gifts to these individuals? Is it expected at all?

Now I must get ready for bed. I’m exhausted!