Monday, December 16, 2013

Almost Christmas

One thing about me: I love the Christmas season. I love the music, the lights, the trees, even the shopping. I love it all. This weekend was Christmas cookie weekend with my mom, sister, and Alex. This is the end result.

There was also a giant tub of caramel corn. Be jealous.

Tonight, I have the third week of leadership training for Advocare. I have learned a lot, but in preparation today, this is me.

This book by Jon Acuff is changing my life. If you have any bit of desire for more out of life, read it. You won't be disappointed. I am ready for more, and I am excited to start.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

It's Too Cold to Function

So I ran a race right before Thanksgiving in 15 degree temps. It was an off road race that took 2+hours. I thought that was cold. Nope, meet 4 degrees today. Why do I live here?!

Either way, it's cold. But it's almost Christmas and I have hung up the race bibs until at least April. I don't do runny noses well. 

So this winter I plan on a whole lot of strength training with our trainer and preparing to dominate the world this spring. Clearly you know I mean complete a Tough Mudder. Yes, I am about 2 blocks past crazy town, but it will be a great accomplishment when it's done. If I don't die from freezing/electrocution/falling from really high/drowning. But, what's life without risk right?!

We are also preparing another group to start the 24 day challenge and I can't wait to see the results! Last time people rocked some serious body fat loss, so I am expecting even bigger changes with the new year. 

Monday, December 2, 2013


So Thursday started our Thanksgiving feast. I always look forward to time with my cousins, sister, and parents. We all eat too much and then shop it off. 
I got all of our Christmas gifts by 11pm Thursday night. I don't think I have ever accomplished so much in so little time.

Friday night my lovely husband had a show downtown so we all rocked out for hours. It was fantastic and I am super proud of him.

Look at him all adorable and rock star like.

I have retained 7 pounds of water weight from Thursday until this morning. Should be all off by Wednesday, but no wonder I feel like a bloated whale. 

Back at the gym this morning. We did about a million squats, so I likely won't be able to sit down later. Oh well, the price for such a fine body as mine. Right. :)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Guess Who's Back..Back Again

If you didn't get that Eminem reference from high school, we can't be friends.

Either way, I let this blog slide this fall due to about 100 reasons, but it's a goal to keep going along. So far I have crossed 2 HUGE items off the bucket list.

In October I got to go to NYC to visit my BFF from college Matt. To say that his distance from me hurts my heart would be an understatement. Everyone has their person. He is my person. 

We had a lovely time and I got my small-town Iowa self acquainted with the "big city." Let's just say I am good with my commute, drink prices, and all around ease of transportation up in Iowa. But it sure is pretty.

Then, I came home and 5 days later ran my first half marathon. I did it in 2:31, which was 1 minute shy of my goal. But, I finished. It was hard. Real hard. But 110% worth it. I have proven a lot to myself this year, and knowing that I ran myself 13.1 miles is quite encouraging.

Alex and I are finishing up the Advocare 24 day challenge right now. I feel mucho better (man, I ate like crap on vacation). I don't expect to lose a lot of weight, but I am seeing some muscle definition in my arms for sure. I still have a long way to go to my Michelle Obama arms though.


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Life in Pictures

Cousin party time.

Yes, that is an albino peacock.

And those bunnies from Pinterest make me want a nap.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Crazy Busy Life

This past week has just flown by. I've started my half marathon training, with 6 miles yesterday. Training for Dam to Dam I ran my long runs at 12:30-13:30 mile pace, which was comfortable to run for long mileage. Now, I have done 2 runs at 5 and 6 mile lengths at 10:30-11:15 mile pace. I am not trying any harder. I have not worked our any more frequently than I have for the past 2.5 years. I give it all to my choice to open my mind to products that will safely enhance my endurance and performance. Catalyst+spark+rehydrate=happy girl. 

Also, Alex has been cooking a lot. A lot of amazing Asian dishes. I am not mad, but it explains my lack of food posts. I will just complain about running instead.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

State Fair Time

So Friday night Alex and I went on our yearly pilgrimage to the Iowa State Fair. Our general love for animals and food really are the driving force here. This year was no different with the addition of this baby.
Yes, that is a maple bacon funnel cake. Translation=heaven. I ran 5 miles in the morning (and felt great. Training at 11 min/mile from 13 before dam to dam..I'm sure Saucony would love all the credit, but ill give it 30% and the other 70% to Advocare) 

We saw so many awesome animals.

How can you not love that guy? 

These are my favorite chickens. So fluffy.

Llama love.

And we went to the petting zoo. And fed goats. Win. 

I still can't handle that camel hump day commercial. Gets me every time.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Proper Form...I Don't Have It.

So this week our trainer did a couple sessions on proper deadlift and squat form. Both with kettlebells and barbells. Let's be honest, I know I don't have good form in my back for heavy lifting. I am a past fat/lazy/not strong girl, and sometimes that shines through. I am bad at keeping my shoulders back, and I often round my back. Both of these are AWFUL for your back and can lead to injury. We spent an hour on both the deadlift and the squat seperately, broke them down, and really got to the root of form. When I started I looked like this:

I now expect to look like this:

Her abs come with good form right?

But for real, if you have a chance to work with someone on nailing proper form, it is worth every penny. Being injured is NOT fun, as I have been in the past. I have a bad knee, so I tend to want to turn it out when squatting. It almost hurts to keep it straight, but I know once I get used to it, it will be 100% better on my knees. Plus, how am I gonna get Beyonce's behind without some squats and deadlifts?

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Brunch is For Winners

Today I went on a good 4.5 mile run. I don't remember what my life was like before Advocare, and I don't want to find it back. Spark and Rehydrate are essential for outdoor training. I finished feeling great and did an 11.5 mile bike ride with family today. Clearly with more Rehydrate. 

We made an awesome breakfast pizza today. It was good and not nearly the stats of our local gas station fare. 

1/2 package Great Value crust mix (the kind you just add water)
6 slices center cut bacon, cooked and chopped
1/2 cup egg beaters
1/2 cup egg whites
2 servings weight watchers shredded cheese
2 servings Velveeta shreds pepper jack

Cook up and scramble the egg beaters and egg whites together. Cook bacon and cut up.

Mix pizza crust as directed and spread out and proof with a fork.

Bake on lower rack at 475 for 5 minutes. 

Remove and spread weight watchers cheese. Then spread egg and bacon, and too with Velveeta cheese. 

Bake on bottom rack at 475 for 8 minutes. Promptly devour half of it.

One half of the pizza is 437 calories and 37g of protein. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

October is Bucket List Month

So October has become "check an item off my bucket list" month. First, I just booked tickets to NYC to visit my best friend Matt. While I am there, we are doing a 5K obstacle race. Then when I get back, it's my first half marathon. 3 items, one month. Bring it world.

Tonight I made this recipe from Emily Bites.

It's a go to favorite in our house. So good. 6 servings is 338 calories and 23g of protein per serving. 

Tonight was boot camp retesting. We did 10 burpees and a 40 yard sprint week 1 and again tonight. I shaved 12 seconds off my time, so I'm pretty happy. Between hard work and Advocare, I am clearly faster and stronger. I started using Catalyst, and I can truly tell the difference. I have kept off the 4 lbs I lost on the cleanse and I am eating like I was prior, healthy, but not over restricted. I did have pasta, cake, and ice cream this weekend and I am still down the 4 lbs. I cannot say enough good things about these products, I feel amazing and am continuing to improve. Bring it half marathon.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Baby Goats and Birthdays

So this weekend my little sister turned 16. Still struggling with that mental picture. 

We cut out our favorites and struggled eating them. 

But I love food so it didn't take long. Sorry Zayn, it was real but I love me some whipped frosting.

We also went to visit my uncle's farm where he has a small petting zoo going on. The most recent additions are these guys.

Yes, it is eating my shirt. I would let it eat the whole sleeve because he was so darn cute. Be prepared for a cute overload now.

My weekend was better than yours, no question. 

Friday, July 26, 2013

Crossfit Hurts My Arms, Legs, and Soul

Today I tried out Crossfit with a good friend from work. I would have taken a picture but my arms couldn't hold up my phone after the workout. That place is no joke and I wanted to cry a little. Ok a lot.

I made some muffins today for our workout/breakfast at our trainer's house tomorrow. They aren't the best thing in the whole world, but they are good.

White Chocolate Craisin muffins 
1 stick margarine 
1/3 cup sugar
1.5 T brown sugar Splenda blend
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup egg beaters
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup reduced sugar craisins

Cream butter and sugars together. Add egg beaters an mix. Add flour, milk, baking powder and mix well. It will be really thick (this is where I should have added more milk, so that might be wise) 
Fold in chips and craisins, and scoop into 18 muffin tins. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes. 

They are pretty good, but they are sense and a little flat. Next time I may add some applesauce and a bit more milk. Possibly also cut the whole wheat flour with some all purpose or cake flour. They still taste good, so I'm not too mad.. Just don't expect a fluffy and light muffin. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Not About Food...For Once

This week of boot camp is military week. Yesterday we carried telephone poles. Yes, you read that correctly.

Today we had some ridiculous circuits with tires, medicine balls, and kettlebells. I am glad I downed a Spark this morning. 

So I saw this online. I have challenged our 3 trainers to 10 reps. I have faith.

Also I have been running more in my Saucony Hurricane 15s. They have changed my life with my knee pain. I have early onset arthritis. It hurts, I whine a lot. But, just maybe they will get me through the half marathon.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Zonkeys and Ostriches

Sunday was the annual ostrich races at our local casino. This year they upped the game. Zebras. 

Only 2 jockeys survived the about 100 yard run.

But it was amazing. And they had great names.

We had a great time. The Zonkey won. Yes, a zebra/donkey mated.

I made brownie pancakes for brunch. They are a great thing to make when you are craving something sweet and super filling.

1 T sugar
1 T cocoa powder 
1/3 cup flour
1/8 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/8 cup egg beaters
1 T melted margarine 
1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk

Mix all the dry ingredients together first, then add the wet. It will be thick. Cook like normal pancakes on the griddle and top with some Hershey's syrup and some Cool Whip Free. 

Mmm. 323 calories of sweet delicious brunch.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Better Than Everything Cupcakes

When I find an unhealthy dessert or food that I love, I take it almost as a personal challenge to recreate it with lower calories. Today I took on Better than Sex cake. We all love it. My swimsuit on the other hand...

1 box Betty Crocker Moist Supreme Red Velvet cake mix
12 oz Diet Coke
1 tub Cool Whip Free
1 box Jello sugar free cheesecake pudding
2 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk
3 packets 100 calorie Oreos

Mix the cake mix and diet coke. Pour into 24 cupcake liners and bake as directed. 

Then, let them cool and poke some holes in them. I went at them with a spatula handle, but really anything small will work.

Mix the jello pudding and almond milk for about 5 minutes with a mixer, or whisk it by hand. Fridge it for about an hour. It will not be thick like pudding by any means. Spoon it onto the top of the cupcakes and make sure it gets into the holes you poked. 

Then stick them in the fridge for a few hours at least, or until ready to serve. Before serving, top with cool whip. Crush the Oreo packets up and sprinkle on top.

This is for sure a fork cupcake. 

It is so good. And really mimicked the flavors of the unhealthy version. One of these babies will run you 93 calories. 

For dinner I made a flatbread pizza. I found some Fit & Active flax flatbreads at Aldi that are delicious. Top it with 1/4 cup  Ragu home style pizza sauce, red pepper flake, oregano, 14g turkey pepperoni, and 28g Velveeta shreds pepper jack. 

Bake for 10 minutes at 425. 

You could really add anything to it, it was pretty good. 225 calories and 19g of protein in what I used. 

Friday, July 19, 2013

Oreo Shake. Sort of.

So I have been craving a malt/shake/blizzard hard the past few days. Tonight I made up a healthier version of an Oreo milkshake. Don't get me wrong, it's not the same, but it was still pretty good.

1 c unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 T sugar free vanilla pudding mix
1 tsp vanilla
2 packets Splenda
1 1/2 cup crushed ice
100 calorie Oreo pack

I threw it all in the magic bullet and just went for it. Next time I will leave out the Oreos and stir them in by hand at the end to have bigger chunks. 

Still delicious and 155 calories for the whole thing. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Workouts With Your Spouse

Today our trainer posted a vlog about the benefits and downfalls of workouts with your partner or spouse. I know that for some people, including me at times, this does not work. For example, when we first started running, Alex and I would try to go on runs together. What this really looked like was me trying really hard and him fast walking. He is faster than me. I have now accepted that. We do races together yes, but he will beat me. Unless I trip him. I have come to terms with that and it has made our lives 100 times easier.
But on the other side, boot camp, kettlebells, RIPPED class, we do together. We push each other hard, rarely speak, sweat, make funny grunting noises, and pass out together. I would never expect him to slow down, use a lighter weight, or ease up on me. And he doesn't. It works out well and I truly cherish the time we spend together working out. It has made both of our lives better and our relationship stronger.

He still won't go to hip hop dance class with me. You can't win em all.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sandbags Are Our Friends

Tonight Bootcamp consisted of grabbing a sandbag and not putting it down the whole time. Doing a variety of exercises, my sandbag and I became very close. And sweaty. 

For dinner we made lettuce wrap tacos. If you are still buying taco seasoning at the store, stop now. The sodium is so high, and you can make it at home much cheaper. 

1 T Chili powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp red pepper flake
1/2 tsp paprika
1 1/2 tsp cumin

Tastes just as good with much less sodium. 

We also make our own pico de gallo. 

1 tomato, chopped
1/4 red onion chopped 
1/4 cup cilantro chopped
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp lime juice

Stir it all up, and it tastes fresh and delicious.

Both much better than store bought, and better for you.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Sore Arms Make Me Grumpy

So those burpees yesterday? Hurt a lot today. All over.

Luckily tonight was more strength oriented and I only wanted to die a little, not a lot.

Also, I registered for my first half marathon. This is likely a bad idea. It is so far. I will try not to think about it until October 20th at about 7:59 am.

Tonight I made a modified version of Mexican Sweet Potatoes that I found on Pinterest.
2 sweet potatoes, cooked in skin (I microwaved about 10 minutes)
3 chili peppers in adobo sauce, minced
1 oz fat free cream cheese
1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
1.5 servings corn, canned, reduced sodium
1.5 servings black beans, canned, no salt added
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 white onion
1 T margarine
1/2 cup Velveeta shreds pepper jack 

Start by heating a cast iron and adding corn. Sprinkle with seasoning. (I used salt, pepper, and Mrs Dash Chipolte) don't stir it, let it roast. Only stir a couple times and roast about 10 minutes. Put in a bowl with beans and set aside. Melt butter and cook onion in pan. Add those to the corn/beans. Mix peppers, cream cheese, Greek yogurt, and cilantro in a bowl. Cut potatoes length wise, hollow out and add to bowl. Mix well, then gently add bean/corn/onion mix. Then cram them into the potato skins again and top with cheese.

Then broil for about 4 minutes on low. 

Then devour. Trust me, one is enough. It is tons of food. And delicious. 

244 calories and 10g of protein. I will add chicken next time to up the protein, but they were delicious.