Tuesday and Thursday: 15 minutes of cardio + 15-25 minutes of upper body work.
Friday: 45 minute of Spin N’ Stretch (this is my own thing, that incorporates my spin bike and my yoga mat)
and three snacks of 200 calories
….especially purple ones.
A – Apples (and all fruits – banana, berries and peaches). I absolutely love fruit. They’re so naturally sweet and tasty! Not to mention extremely good for you! I aim (and succeed) to have three to four servings of fruit, daily. Usually this consists of an apple, berries galore, bananas and perhaps a pear/peach/apricot. Typically speaking I prefer my fruit in the natural and fresh form, instead of dried and/or juiced, but whatever cranks your chain, right? My all time favorite go-to fruit at the moment is Pink Lady Apples. They’re such a treat! I eat an apple daily, I’m sure. I love them.
B – Barre/Pilates styled workouts are definitely going to take the cake for B. As you know, when I started to incorporate more Yoga/Pilates and Barre into my fitness regime, I noticed so many changes in my mind and body. I feel beautiful, graceful, elegant… the list could go on. Let’s be honest, I feel girly. I love to feel girly.
C – The clean eating lifestyle. I absolutely love the feeling of eating clean. Knowing that the food I put into my body is extremely healthful and good for me has helped me – in so many ways – overcome my struggles with disordered eating. Instead of focusing on what I shouldn’t/couldn’t eat, it caused me to focus on what I should and need to eat. If you’ve never tried out the lifestyle of eating clean, I strongly advise you to give it a go. 🙂
D – I love being able – or being surrounded by people who – dress up. I know it sounds kind of ridiculous but ever since I took part in a high school program a few years back where one of the events require me to dress up, I have loved the whole concept. I am not huge into dressing up like a total skank, though. Halloween to me is about being cute or funny, not looking like I just walked out of a porno, thank you muchly!
E – Exercise has become an important and required part of my life. I love to create work outs (see below for this weeks ‘Love Your Body Toning Every Inch’ work out). I used to think I didn’t have it in my to design a good work out, but now I love making them up. Every morning, over my oats, I plan my work out. I live for it. Some people don’t understand and some people take the whole concept for granted (which, never should be the case). I feel grateful that I am able to sprint, sculpt, spin and stretch! It makes me who I am; it makes me feel beautiful.
F – Friends the TV show. It’s actually almost ridiculous how much I love this show. I – at the drop of a hat – can reference the show without even a thought! My mother and I have kind of turned this into a small game. OK, OK. A really large game. It’s embarrassing, really.
G – Games are like my all-time favorite pass time. Mostly word, card or board games. I am in LOVE with crazy eights, cross words and… pretty much any board game under the sun. I love challenging my mind and thinking, so trivia games are a big plus. Lately I’ve been kicking serious rump at them, too! I just love them. My Friday nights are usually spent curled up with a tea and some kind of word game. I think that I found my perfect match considering last Friday night, Omar didn’t hesitate to join me on the coach with a book of Suduko. 🙂
I – Intellectual conversation with strangers (and friends, too). I absolutely love exchanging knowledge on virtually any topic with a multitude of people. If I don’t know something, I want to learn about it! I don’t feel the need to be an expert on every topic, but I love expanding my vocabulary and knowledge everyday of my life!
J – Jewelry of all kinds. Typically I find myself drawn to elegant and simple pieces, with a timeless flare. Currently my favorite is the necklace Baba got me while he was away. 🙂 It goes with virtually everything I own!
K – My dear friend Kathryn who has always supported me and has always been there for me. I love her so much, I can’t even begin to explain it. We can go months and months without seeing each other and the moment that we see each other again it is as if no time has passed at all. I absolutely love her and am so grateful to have her. No matter what happens, she will always be my dearest friend. My very own kindred spirit :).
L – Laughter (mostly from small humans… yes, babies). I absolutely love the sound of a laugh. More than you can even understand. It’s the most beautiful sound there is. When people laugh, it makes me smile. When babies laugh it makes me feel like nothing bad in the world could happen.
M – Me time. I knwo it sounds odd, but I’ve always been a pretty quite and to myself person. I require so quiet quality time with me, or I will go completely nuts. I’ve discovered that this is best done in the early morning between 6 and 8 AM. This is when I work out and eat breakfast and plan out my day. I love it. After that time, I want nothing more but then to be surrounded by those to whom I love, I’ll admit. Too much me time can also make me a little crazy. But in that hour, I love just quietly sitting with myself.
Okay, Zooey didn’t get the memo and joins me. In fact, now she comes and gets me if I am not up at a certain time. She tends to be a quiet attendant in my morning routines, so I decided to let her stay.
N – Spending time with nature would definitely be the number one on here. I love trees and trails and birds and butterflies. All of it. In the summertime and fall, most preferably. I love sitting among the trees and reflecting on life. I just love nature. It’s simple beauty makes me truly calm and relaxed.
O – My amazing boyfriend, Omar, who has come into my life in the most beautiful and profound way. Before him I was an honest wreck. I didn’t know who I was or what it meant to be loved by someone other than your family – in that very special way. H’es made me come to terms with the fact that I am strong and beautiful and smart. When I am with him I feel safe and able to do anything. He makes me happier than I ever thought I could be.
P – My loving and incredible parents.
It is no secret that my mother is my best friend. Our relationship is unlike any mother-daughter relationship I’ve seen. We talk about everything, enjoy doing everything together and I am not the least bit embarrassed about it. Why? Because my mother is truly one-of-a-kind. She’s the most generously beautiful woman I’ve ever met and I feel very fortunate to have someone like her in my life.
My father is also no joke. He’s odd and strange, albeit, but he would bend over backward to keep the people he cares for happy. I’ll never forget about the kind and thoughtful things he’s done for me over the years and will never forget the many wise words he has bestowed upon me.
I really don’t know how I got this lucky, but I am certainly glad I did. 🙂
Q – Quotes and quoting. Whether is be awesome Friends references, or quoting the famous words of Dr. Suess, the whole concept of a good quote makes me happy. To know that words have had such a great impact that they’ve – in many ways – been eternalness, makes me happy. I would absolutely love to one day be quoted.
My favorite quote of ever:
R – Roses and all other flowers cause me to feel at complete and utter ease. If I could live in a flower garden, I probably would. I’d sleep of the petals of a rose and dance along the stem of a sunflower. Life would be perfect!
S – Anything related to the sea or the ocean. As I’ve said in the past, I absolutely love large bodies of water! I love them even more if there is waves involved! Anything in this category makes me truly happy shells, dolphins, swimming, sailing (though I am not a sailor, I’ve gone out of boats many a’time), sand! Okay, until this moment I didn’t realize how many ‘s’ words related. The sea makes me extremely happy! 🙂
T – Telling people you love them
It might be the best feeling in the world to see the smile on the face of a person who knows they’re truly loved.
Mama, I love you. Omar, I love you. Daddy, I love you. Zooey, I love you. Kathryn, I love you.
I LOVE YOU 🙂
U – Unusually child-like behavior….
Like eating off a child’s plate…
FYI: There is an owl smiling at you under there, I promise.
V – Vegetables! All of them. I haven’t met a veggie I didn’t like.
W – One of my largest passions has to be writing. Every moment that I can sit down and write, I will. I love the feeling of constructing a well-thought out sentence and sharing it with the people I love. Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of positive feedback regarding MY writing. I love it! Typically speaking, I’ve never felt like I was all that good at it, but wit all this kindness, I feel I am really starting to develop a true belief in myself.
X – Total Cheat: x-mas Eve is probably my favorite time of the year. I absolutely love the feeling of family and togetherness. Typically speaking, the idea of squishing so many people into my Grandparents house causes to me feel a sense of claustrophobia, but Christmas Eve night is something completely different. If we weren’t crawling all over each other, it just would NOT be worth it, it wouldn’t. Chrisrmas Eve night is also the one night a beg for snow to come. More often than not, I find myself wanting to get a hold of one of them snow removal cans from Frosty Returns and get rid of it all, as well as the cold. But, the two weeks leading up to and Christmas Eve itself is a whole other thing. I love snow at Christmas time.
It’s so x-citing 😛
Y – Yoga! You all know how I love me a good bend and stretch! Lately I have been loving Tara Stiles yoga via Livestrong woman, The routines are short enough that you COULD do a few of them, or add it to the end of your own work out for a new stretch. I absolutely love the feeling you get after completely a yoga routine. Light and relaxed. I fell out of love with yoga for a bit, but we have reconnected in a more healthy and practical way! Thank Heavens!
Z – Zooey, my dog, is absolutely the number one Z in my books, I love everything about her :). Including (but no limited to) her strangeness, her goofy moments, her snuggles… everything. 🙂 She’s a true keeper.
Yesterday Omar, Zooey and I took a solid two hour nap together and it was total bliss.
Oh, yes, and the work out 🙂
stay sweet 🙂
On Fears and Fun
a simple saturday
out and a bout
Since yesterday was so beautiful, Baba and I took advantage of our day off to enjoy some lovely summertime weather. Originally the plan was to go to the Discovery Center and have a seriously awesome time with bubbles and other weird concoctions, but with the state of the weather, there was no use wasting it indoors.
So, instead, we walked the waterfront. It was absolutely beautiful a walk! It was an absolutely beautiful afternoon. Perfect, really.
Our first stop was this quaint, little Antique shop that I didn’t know existed. A little hole in the wall. I was so excited to have found it. Inside housed records, old nick-nacks, jewelry; you name it, and you’d find it there. Due to my recent interested in starting a seashell and ocean related collection, I contemplated purchasing a shell (yes, there was ample shell-age) but opted against it. The way I see it, my shell collection should begin with beautiful shells collected from the ocean, itself.
After was meandered about there – deciding to return – we decided to head to the Waterfront (hello, no brainer!) and head to the Market. This is where I found this!
This was a little more than a ‘hint’ of honey, if you know what I am sayin’!
After our stroll around the market, we decided to head out to eat. The walk back was so nice. Everyone was out and enjoying life. Smiling. Baba was in a good mood. It was bliss! Yes, I said it, ya jerk. Bliss!
Being that I am a total spaz, Baba was definitely the navigator of the afternoon. I could have easily had my eyes closed the entire time and I still managed to get from point a to point a without fail. Dinner was held at none other than my favorite place to eat: The Wooden Monkey.
This is my all-time favorite place to eat. I don’t know if it is the design, the food, the atmosphere or the workers. I think it is just everything. First of all, the waiters actually take the time to discover your personal needs as a consumer. They understand that in this day of age, people come with many different dietary restrictions (both Baba and I do: I maintain a generally low starch diet, while his stomach is unable to handle certain foods properly). The staff is kind, warm-hearted and often humorous (one of the waiters did this neat flip-y thing with our glasses, that I just need to learn… to YouTube, with me!)
The food, in my opinion, is absolutely delightful. If going, I recommend one of the salads, their trio of dips (including a really interesting hummus – unlike any I’ve ever tasted) or their coconut quinoa pilaf. Absolutely amazing!
Baba ordered the BBQ chicken pizza sans onion and red pepper! He absolutely loved it – as he always seems to. He had polished the plate clean, which is not at all surprising to me. Only two nights prior, he single-handed-ly ate a sixteen inch pizza. I don’t know where he puts it!
I, on the other hand, enjoyed their Sweet Apple Salad avec 3 oz of free-range chicken and a whole grain mustard sauce. I loved it! The carrots and apple (which, I think, was granny smith) were done julienne and were extremely tasty when eating together. It was sweet, crunchy and absolutely delish!
If you are ever in Halifax, Nova Scotia, I’d highly suggest you stop by and enjoy some grub!
today’s work out
So, this morning, I had a stroke of genius!
This was a lot of fun! Try it out 🙂
Whip it Good Oats
Bring water to a boil.
Add 1/3 cup of oatmeal and 1/2 T of chia;
Reduce to a low heat and add 50g (about 1/2 – though I used about 1/4 of the banana in the oats and used the rest on the top of them) a thinly sliced banana;
When well whipped, add 1/4 cup of egg whites;
Add stevia, cinnamon and so forth to taste, then transfer into a bowl and add toppings!
The toppings, 1/4 banana, 1/4 cup blueberries and a handful of Love Grow Oats. Oh, and 1/2T of Almond butter, of course.
Following my breakfast (or, about an hour or so later), I completed – yet another – yoga hybrid work out. Thanks to Courtney@SweetToothSweetLife I’ve really gotten into hybrid work outs! I love the benefits of yoga, but my HIITs are something I don’t want to stop. I love them way too much.
What You’ll Need:
Yoga mat, water, interval timer
Warm up: 1 minute jog + 1 minute AMRAP Sun Salutations
Set your Interval Timer to six rounds of four minute intervals (30 seconds high; 10 seconds low), with 2 minute breaks in between each set – these breaks will not be used for rest, so take breaks as needed.
You will be repeating this series, two times through.
Each series is comprised of two yoga-inspired toning moves: One which targets abs, the other targets your obliques.
Series One: Downward Dog Series
Move one: Begin in downward dog position and using your abs, pull your body forward into a plank. Pull your left leg into your elbow, then return to plank and pull right leg in. Continue this AMRAP for 1 minute.
Move two: Preform the same movements, only pull the leg to the opposite elbow. Left to right; right to left. 1 min AMRAP
Preform your 4 minute HIIT. 30 seconds high, 10 low. Any cardio you’d like.
Series Two; Boat Pose Series
Move one: Begin in Boat Pose (your but rested on the ground, you body creating a V-shape. Legs extended off the ground). Slowly lower until feet and head are about 1-inch off the ground, then return to boat position. AMRAP 1 min.
Move two: Remain in boat pose, but instead of lowering, hold your hands over your chest (feet held in air) and twist, letting your elbows touch the ground behind you (russian twist). 1 min AMRAP
Perform your 4 minute HIIT.
Series Three: Side Plank Series
Move One: In side plank (on left), lift your right leg and preform a side crunch with your right arm. AMRAP 30 sec.
Move Two: Hold chataranga. AMRAP 30 second
Repeat on opposite side.
Preform your 4 minute HIIT.
Done! (Again, repeat once more for a really sweaty work out!)
Immediately after that, I enjoyed a yogurt mess including a serving of Puffins, blueberries and another 1/2T almond butter. This went un-pictured, as I was really hungry.
Later, for lunch, I enjoyed this bad boy:
It was a turkey salad, with roasted squash, 1/2 and apple, mushrooms, cucumber and a little hummus. After that I wasn’t fully satisfied, so I enjoyed a Simply Bar (I love these).
At around four – still at work – I grabbed a Oskri Bar (I love that this company states that their products are Halal. Supportin’ my boy!)
By the time I got home, I was ready for a Salmon and Sprout Salad! I threw in some asparagus, mushrooms, greens and hummus.
I ended the night with my a-typical bowl of fruit, AB and greek yogurt, tea and called it a night.
That is all!
As it is Sunday, I decided to do – yet another – simple Sunday. Today’s involves something that is quite simple, indeed.
Apples (a simple sugar) and green tea.
After lunch, I always need an apple and a cup of green tea. My lunch just doesn’t feel complete without it. There is a warmth I get (obviously from the tea) while enjoying this combination. I also love how something as small as an apple can be both a) yummy and b) extremely good for you!
Tea is a big deal for me. I absolutely love everything about tea. A lot of people call me an old lady, and I am pretty alright with that. I love the feeling of curling up in the afternoon with a cup of tea and a sweet fruit. Nothing gets better than that in my mind.
I’ve been having some issues with my computer, lately, so this morning while looking up a good upper body circuit, it malfunctioned. I immediately knew what needed to be done.
I pulled out my pad, my pen and my fitness thinking cap and got to work. It was “go” time.
Since I absolutely loved the last yoga hybrid I created, I decided I should try to do it again. Now, let me tell you, it worked like a charm!
Lightly jog for five minutes and then complete ten sun salutations. If you’re feeling up to it, don’t hesitate to do the Sweaty Sun Salutes
Complete the following circuit 3-4 times through, taking breaks only when needed. Try to hold your weights through the entire circuit. Drop them if you need to. Keep your core engaged. Focus on good yoga form.
Complete one Sweaty Sun Salute, return to the chaturanga position, hold for five seconds;
Return to plank and preform 50 mountain climbers (one rep includes both legs)
Jump forward into chair pose, then return to an upright position. Complete 20 bicep curls.
Complete one Sweaty Sun Salute, return to the chaturanga position, hold for five seconds;
Return to plank and preform 25 burpees (yes, with the weights in hand. Try your best)
Jump forward into chair pose, then return to an upright position. Complete 20 tricep kickbacks.
Complete one Sweaty Sun Salute, return to the chaturanga position, hold for five seconds;
Return to plank and preform 50 plank jacks (keep your core engaged)
Jump forward into chair pose, then return to an upright position. Complete 10 alternative forward raises and then 10 forward raises with both arms going simultaneously.
Complete one Sweaty Sun Salute and repeat.
This was a lot harder than I had anticipated. I did four rounds, holding 5 lb weights and I was a sweat ball by the end. Try to go four times through, for time, with minimal stops. It is harder than it looks, but feels so great.
I really loved this work out and plan to create more yoga-hybrid.
Anyhow, I need to head out. My friend is picking me up and we’re going to the mall to look at CDs!
Many months ago, tragedy struck this household…
MamaBear discovered a negative reaction to, you guessed it, peanuts – both in nut and butter form.
That creamy, sweet and nutty indulgence was one that she would never be able to enjoy again. Now, I know what you might be thinking: ‘so?’ Well, allow me to inform you of MamaBear’s deep obession with all things peanut butter related. To quote, ‘peanut butter was a staple…a staple in my diet. I miss it so so so much!’
Well, something clearly needed to be done about that.
So, I did what any rational foodie would do.
Sunflower seed butter is clearly the –
Nope. Not interested.
Then, I found it.
Then, I found what she wanted.
WOWbutter is gluten, dairy, peanut and tree nut free. All of which, is admirable. The aim of this specific butter is to provide peanut butter-y spread that is 100% safe for schools. In MamaBear’s opinion, this guy definitely delivers. I actually think the word ‘wow’ came out her mouth upon sucking back on a spoonful. Which, being the pun loving gal I am, pleased me to no end.
In regard to the nutrition, this little guy proves to be pretty clean, it does:
“Non GMO Toasted Soy, Soy Oil, Granulated Cane Sugar, Monoglyceride (from vegetable oil, prevents oil separation) and Sea Salt.”
I can read all the words, know what they mean and can count them on ONE hand.
So, this is Caitlyn approved!
However, I’ll happily stick to my all-natural almond butter, thank you! 🙂
Today the plan was to tackle every ‘s’ of fitness: strength, speed and stretch. So, I completely a 16 minute HIIT routine, a 10 minute AMRAP routine (compliments of ZuzkaLight and my Long and Lean Routine from the ToneItUp Beach Babe DVD. At the end I felt amazing! And – you know – sweaty!
Along with being addicted to the TIU work outs, I also love the TIU protein pancake, which I’ve yet to perfect…
My Protein Pancake
1 scoop protein powder of choice
1/4 cup of egg whites
3 tbsp Fat Free Greek Yogurt
2 tbsp Unsweetened Almond Milk
Sprinkle of cinnamon
Mix all ingredients into a bowl and wisk;
Heat a pan over medium heat and spray lightly with an olive oil cooking spray;
Pour mixed ingredients into bowl and cook until showing side starts to bubble;
Attempt to gracefully flip;
Fail at any sort of grace;
Let other side cook for approx the same amount of time;
Get something that looks like this…
Allow mild depression to ensue for a few moments, then decide that the show isn’t over…
Cover pancake with your choice of toppings, smile and mow!
My toppings included three strawberries, almond butter and additional Greek Yogurt. 🙂