Today’s Workout: Lots of Moving

Posted by on Sep 30, 2014 in Workouts | 0 comments

Okay, I normally rest on Sunday, but I chose to jump on the treadmill for 35 minutes of brisk and high incline walking–nothing major; then on Monday, I basically performed the same workout from last Monday, so I chose to not blog about that one.
Now, it's Tuesday and it's an all cardio day. I thought I would just wing it and committed to constant moving for 45 minutes in my bedroom, while watching two episodes of Melissa & Joey on Netflix (don't judge me…). I will say that I usually have this show on in the background when I'm weight training because it's mildly entertaining and I don't have to pay close attention to keep up.
I actually burned about as many calories performing various high intensity and low intensity exercises as I did on the treadmill last week! Pretty cool.
Total calories burned:
Cardio: 45 minutes
  • do an exercise for 1 minute for 40 minutes
  • for the last 5 minutes, just cool down with all low intensity exercises, such as marching in place and stepping side to side
  • jumping jacks
  • half jacks
  • burpees
  • lateral lunge backs
  • jumping jacks with feet criss-crossing
  • mime jumping rope, perform different varieties: side to side, skip, jumping forward and backwards, etc
  • shuffle to one side of the room and then back
  • marching high knees
  • jogging high knees
  • marching butt kickers
  • jogging butt kickers
  • normal jog in place
  • slalom jumps
  • “ski” in place
Stretch: Quads/Calves/Hamstrings/Torso
Read More

Today’s Workout: Stringing Together Short Videos

Posted by on Sep 27, 2014 in Workouts | 0 comments

I toyed with the idea of jumping on the treadmill, again, but after getting a late start on my workouts (my BFF was in from Austin, so we grabbed breakfast and chatted for a few hours), I decided to just hole up in my room and do several of the videos from the past few weeks. I have to say, it made the time fly by and I actually got in a great cardio workout.
One note: if the videos had a cooldown/stretch, I didn't do that part until the end of my entire workout since I knew that I was going to continue exercising.
Oh! My husband was awesome and picked up a new Polar heart rate monitor for me at Best Buy (apparently, they were marked 50% off!) and now I'm back on track! And it's a perky pink.
Total calories burned:

Cardio Videos: 45 Mins
  • this was a new jump rope video
  • has similar moves to the other jump rope video
  • it wasn't tough doing the two jump rope videos back to back
  • I find these fun
  • pretty mellow and well-rounded
  • this one isn't too difficult, either
  • I just reviewed this one with the extra jazzy Blogilates gal
  • the runner's lunge with hop is the toughest move
  • this one is the highest in intensity and the shortest
  • just try to keep up and you'll be panting at the end
Stretch: I just went back to two of the videos and completed the stretching sections
Read More

Today’s Workout: Final Strength Training for this Week

Posted by on Sep 26, 2014 in Workouts | 0 comments

It's Friday and that means another round of strength training. It's been interesting to cut out the cardio in between circuits and just focus on the resistance exercises. It still ends up being about an hour long session and I'm still dripping sweat but I'm hoping to build more lean muscle and still lose a bit of fat by keeping the other cardio only workouts.
It's only the end of week 2 of my new venture: I've lost 2lbs. I'm not trying to lose pounds but that's somewhat encouraging since I've increased my calories through extra protein and cut back on my cardio but increasing the focus on strength training. I'll have to see if the weight stays off next weigh in.
Total calories burned: my HR monitor was fritzing out on me…probably need a new one. bummer!
Cardio Warm up: 8 Mins
  • pretty easy and simple routine
Strength Training: Full Body
Complete the circuit 3x
  • 10 reverse lunges with dumbbells, per leg (8lbs)
  • 10 full squats
  • 10 pliĆ© squats with dumbbell (15lbs)
  • 20 donkey kicks, per leg
  • 20 straight rear leg lifts, per leg
  • 10 one legged bridges, per leg
  • 20 reverse dumbbell flys (8lbs)
  • 10 front + 10 lateral shoulder raises (8lbs)
  • 20 triceps pulses (8lbs)
  • 15 hammer curls (15lbs)
  • 15 bent over rows (15lbs)
  • 10 triceps kickbacks (8lbs)
  • 10 supermans (with “W” formation with arms)
  • plank crunch: 10 opposite elbow to knee, per side
  • 30 reverse crunches
  • 40 bike crunches
  • 20 v sits
  • 20 plank Ts (with 10 push ups)
Stretch: Quads/Calves/Hamstrings/Torso/Arms

Read More

My Chicken Salad Sandwiches

Posted by on Sep 25, 2014 in Recipes | 0 comments

I have not made a chicken salad (or egg salad or tuna salad, for that matter) in quite a long time. My daughter happens to love these types of meals, so while meal planning for this week, I thought I would add that back into the rotation. Now, I did cheat this time and used canned white meat chicken instead of cooking up raw chicken breasts and then shredding. I've made quite a few “from scratch” recipes this week, plus a homemade cheesecake for my son's 13th bday, so I don't feel quite so bad for the canned stuff.
This version has plenty of veggies, low in fat and a touch of sweetness from the grapes. Also, I opted to serve these open faced since it takes everyone a bit longer to eat (that can be an issue with teenagers–if they eat something too quickly, they think that they are still hungry–no joke). Enjoy!
Serves 6
  • 2 12oz cans of chunk white chicken breast, well drained
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1/3 medium red onion, diced
  • 1 medium carrot grated
  • 15 grapes, sliced into 2-3 pieces (depending on size of each grape), optional
  • 2 tbs dill pickle relish
  • 2 tbs yellow mustard
  • 4 tbs light or fat free mayo (I prefer Miracle Whip Fat Free)
  • 1/2 tsp kosher or sea salt
  • few dashes of ground black pepper
  • 12 slices toasted light bread
  • lettuce, tomato
  • In medium bowl, combine the chicken, celery, onion, carrot and grapes
  • In a small bowl or measuring cup, combine the relish through pepper and mix well with fork or whisk
*if you don't like yours as “mustardy”, you could omit 1 tbs of the mustard
  • Pour the mayo mixture into the chicken bowl and mix thoroughly but not until mushy
*I prefer my salad on the drier side-not gloopy
  • Spread even amounts of the chicken salad onto each slice of bread
1/6th of chicken salad = 116 calories
*2 slices light bread + 1 sliced roma tomato + 2 lettuce leafs = 234 calories
**we had ours with roasted squash (2 cups) = 90 calories and extra grapes = 30 calories
***the entire meal was under 400 calories
Cook's Notes:
*I've been eating Sara Lee 45 Calories & Delightful whole wheat bread (has 6g protein per 2 slices)
**2 zucchini + 2 yellow squash were cut into cubes, misted with olive oil and sprinkled with dried parsley, salt and pepper and then roasted at 425 for 10 minutes
Read More

Today’s Workout: Givin’ the Treadmill Some Love

Posted by on Sep 25, 2014 in Workouts | 0 comments

I thought that this time I would give the videos a break and hit the treadmill for about 45 minutes of jogging and high incline walking. Season 9 of Bones is finally on Netflix, so I committed to staying on the treadmill for an entire episode. I'm a bit sore from yesterday's workout, so avoiding burpees and jump squats is probably a good idea.
Here's the breakdown…
Total calories burned:
Treadmill: 45 minutes
1% incline
0-5 min: alternate between 3.0mph and 4.5mph every minute
3% incline
5-10 min: alternate between 4.0mph and 5.0mph every minute
5% incline
10-15 min: alternate between 4.0mph and 5.0mph every minute
10% incline
15-25 min: alternate between 2.0mph/3.0mph/3.5mph every minute
25-45 min: repeat minutes 0-20
Stretch: Quads/Calves/Shins
Read More

Today’s Workout: Mid Week Strength Training

Posted by on Sep 24, 2014 in Workouts | 0 comments

I tried out a new warm up cardio video (only 6 mins) from Spark People and Blogilates. It was okay–got the job done although I do find the Blogilates gal a bit too “up” for my taste.
Again, I switched up the order of the strength moves from last week, but was similar to Monday's. I read an article regarding carbs, proteins and timing for workouts, etc and I swear, it's so hard to figure out what you should do! On my new meal plan, I'm trying to eat more protein and fewer carbs, but my carbs are still somewhat high because the fruits and vegetables I like to eat are high in carbs. Of course, those carbs are different from the ones in sliced bread and cake… Anyway, I think that I'll continue with my current plan for another week and see how I feel and look.
Total calories burned:
Cardio Warm up: 6 Mins
Strength Training: Full Body
Complete the circuit 3x
  • 20 reverse flyes (8lbs)
  • 15 front + 15 lateral shoulder raises (8lbs)
  • 20 triceps pulses (8lbs)
  • 10 hammer curls (22lbs)
  • 10 bent over rows (22lbs)
  • 10 triceps kickbacks (8lbs)
  • 10 supermans
  • 10 walking lunges with dumbbells (8lbs)
  • 10 reverse lunges with dumbbells (8lbs), per leg
  • 20 dumbbell deadlifts (44lbs)
  • 20 dumbbell swings (22lbs)
  • 20 donkey kicks with 10 pulses on last rep, per leg
  • 20 straight rear leg lifts with 10 pulses on last rep, per leg
  • 20 bridges with weight over hips (22lbs)
  • 20 half squats
  • plank with 10 opposite elbow to knee crunches, per side
  • 30 reverse crunches
  • 40 bike crunches
  • 20 v sits
  • 20 plank Ts with 10 push ups
Stretch: Quads/Calves/Hamstrings/Torso/Arms
Read More

Stuffed Acorn Squash: Autumn Goodness!

Posted by on Sep 22, 2014 in Recipes | 0 comments

Believe it or not, this is my very first acorn squash recipe. Every time I'd see those cute little gourds at the store, I'd want to make something but wasn't really sure that I could. After watching The Kitchen on the Food Network last weekend (their Fall episode), I was inspired by Sunny Anderson's stuffed squash recipe and decided to use that one as a guide, replacing a few things with my own ideas and leaving out some of hers (like the walnuts and cranberries).
They turned out wonderfully and were delicious AND you can eat two halves for under 300 calories! That's crazy!
Although we are still in the midst of summer temps here in Texas, this dish interjects a little of what's to come –Autumn!
*one with Swiss cheese for my husband and one plain
Serves 6
  • 6 acorn squash, halved, seeded and ready to roast*
  • 3 links lean Italian turkey sausage (the kind in the casing; either hot or sweet), casings removed
  • 1 medium white onion, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1/2 medium bell pepper (I used red)
  • 1 tbs paprika
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • olive oil
  • kosher or sea salt
  • shredded cheese, optional
  • Preheat oven to 400 while prepping the acorn squash
  • Spread olive oil over the cut area of the squash and sprinkle with salt and pepper (I use my Misto)
  • Place the squash, cut side up, onto a baking sheet (I cover mine with foil for easy clean up) and bake for 40 minutes; once done baking, remove from oven and lower the temp to 350
  • Allow the squash to cool while you continue with the rest of the ingredients
  • In a large skillet, over medium high heat, cook the sausage, onion, celery and bell pepper until softened
  • Once the squash is cool enough to handle, scoop out the insides but making sure to leave the skin/shell intact
  • Place the scooped out squash into a medium bowl along with the onion mixture
  • Add in the paprika, garlic powder and black pepper; stir to combine
  • Put even amounts of the squash mix back into the acorn squash shells and sprinkle the tops with the salt
  • If you want to add shredded cheese, you can do so
  • Bake for 15 minutes and allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving
2 acorn squash halves (w/out cheese) = 283 calories

Cook's Notes:
*cut the squash from stem to bottom, not side to side
*buying 6 whole acorn squash was a bit more than I would normally spend on just one component of a dish ($10), but it was worth doing just to try out; next time, I might just buy 3 and we can each have a half for a side dish
Read More