Category Archives: Breakfast

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Pancakes

This morning, I was in the mood for pancakes, but I didn’t have any pancake mix so I decided to use oatmeal instead. I used to make oatmeal protein pancakes all the time and was definitely glad I made them this morning. They really hit the spot!

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For my pancakes I used:

  • one packet of brown sugar and cinnamon Better Oats
  • about 1/3 cup water
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon of PB2
  • 1/2 tablespoon mini chocolate chips

I added the oatmeal and water into a bowl and microwaved it for about one minute. Then I whisked in the egg whites, PB2, and mini chocolate chips. I cooked the pancakes on a heated griddle for about 3 minutes on each side.

This recipe is really easy and satisfied my cravings for pancakes! I also like to add protein powder to the mix if I have it on hand for that extra punch of protein.

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Since, I didn’t have any protein powder, I had some plain Fage Greek yogurt with berries to get some extra protein.

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I’m off to teach my Women on Weights class. Have a great day!

  • What did you have for breakfast?
  • Pancakes or waffles?

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An Afternoon at the Zoo

Good morning!

Yesterday was my first check-in for Best Fit Body. I am doing a six week program and I check-in every Monday. I officially started the nutrition portion on Thursday and ate good all weekend long. On Monday, after four days, I was down 1.4 pounds. :)

I have also been taking progress pictures which is a great way to see your progress rather than just relying on the scale.

At the gym yesterday, I did a chest and core workout followed by a HIIT workout.

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I decided to try the treadmill for my HIIT workout and I felt really good during the running portions.

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I think taking a break from running has helped all my soreness and I was able to complete the 30 minute HIIT workout on the treadmill. I was worried by ankles or quad would start bother me and I’d have to switch to a lower impact machine but I felt good!

Breakfast before my workout was plain Greek yogurt mixed with one stevia packet and topped with raspberries and blueberries.

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Is anyone else super picky about their berries?! I always find the biggest firmest blueberries to eat and get rid of the rest. I can’t stand the squishy blueberries.

Today

This morning, I taught my Women on Weights class and then the kids and I packed a lunch and headed to a small, local zoo.

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We spent the afternoon at the zoo, watching the animals and eating lunch.

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Later this evening, I’m going to CrossFit. Have a great day!

  • When was the last time you went to the zoo?
  • Favorite animal?

 

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Filed under Breakfast, Family Fun, Working Out

Easy Workouts and Peach Oatmeal Yogurt Parfait

Good morning!

I’ve been taking it pretty easy the past few days since my calves were still tight from Saturday’s race as well as pain in my quad and ankles. I’ve been sticking to upper body workouts at the gym and today my calves finally felt better so I did some cardio at the gym.

My quad is still sore so I did really light and easy cardio: 25 minutes on the arc trainer, 20 slow minutes on the treadmill, and 12 minutes on the stationary bike.

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All while watching the Kardashians because you have to pass that cardio time somehow. :)

This past weekend, Danny got some new shoes for marathon training and of course I had to get myself a new pair. I found a pair of Nikes for pretty cheap and I decided to get them since I have been wearing my old Nikes for everything and they’re getting some wear on them.

I wore them to the gym today and the kids wanted me to take a picture of their shoes too.

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Danny got Brooks Ravenna 6 for his Chicago Marathon training.

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I’m debating whether or not I should go to CrossFit tonight. I missed Tuesday so I haven’t been all week but we’re running a 5k on Saturday so I don’t want to be too sore for the race.

Breakfast

I made a delicious breakfast the other day. I used to make this all the time but I haven’t made it in forever – peach oatmeal yogurt parfait.

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You can check out the recipe here. It’s really easy and so good. I cut up a peach and mixed it with a little bit of brown sugar and cinnamon. Then I added oatmeal to the bottom of the jar, added the peaches, a few blueberries, and topped it with plain Greek yogurt mixed with one stevia packet.

The warm oatmeal and cold yogurt make such a delicious creamy combo!

Have a great day!

  • What’s your favorite brand of shoes?
  • Favorite breakfast?

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Eating and Working Out

Good morning!

Breakfast

I recently bought these Better Oats and I love them!

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They only have 100 calories per packet and I love to top them with about a half tablespoon of peanut butter. Peanut butter makes everything better.

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Workout

This morning at the gym I did a glute/leg workout which included:

  • squats
  • barbell step-ups
  • barbell hip thrusts
  • deadlifts
  • split squats
  • weight hip bridges
  • single leg hip bridges

I just realized that I forgot to add donkey kicks to my workout this morning! I’ll have to add them next time.

I also foam rolled and stretched for 20 minutes.

I decided to sign up for another 5k this weekend. I wasn’t planning on doing it since I just ran a 5k last weekend but I really want to run this race. The race is the Dash ‘n Splash 5k and it’s literally three minutes from my house.

I have run this small race twice – in 2012 and 2013. (I didn’t run last year because of my hip surgery.) This is the race that always defeats me. The first year I ran it, my time was a lot longer than I wanted it to be. The next year I ran it, the weather was incredibly hot and humid. I had to take walk breaks the last mile and I just wasn’t happy with that.

So this will be my third year running it and I am determined to run the whole race and get a decent time. And of course it’s supposed to be 90 degrees and humid on Sunday. Great.

I’m making to stretch, foam roll, and drink lots of water this week so I can be okay for the 5k on Sunday. We’ll see how it goes!

Post workout selfie because why not?! :)

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Lunch

Lunch today was the same thing that I had for dinner a couple of nights ago.

I made a salad with a summer chopped salad mix, grilled chicken, and tortilla strips. I topped it with Bolthouse Farms salsa ranch dressing. I seriously love all of the Bolthouse Farms yogurt dressings!

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This afternoon, I’m donating blood for a blood drive at the gym and then I’ll just be doing some stuff around the house.

Have a great day!

  • Did you workout today?
  • Favorite salad dressing?
  • Favorite breakfast?

 

 

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Filed under Breakfast, Fitness, Lunch, Running, Working Out

Foam Rolling

Good morning!

Yesterday morning, I had my normal oats for breakfast but I put them in an almost empty peanut butter jar to eat. The jar had about half a tablespoon or so of peanut butter left in it so I just cooked the oats in the microwave and then added them to the peanut butter jar.

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Oatmeal with peanut butter is amazing. Actually peanut butter makes most things better – french toast, apples, crackers, chocolate, pretzels. :)

Since I went to CrossFit on Tuesday night, I just decided to stick to cardio at the gym on Wednesday morning.

I ran/walked 3.5 miles on the treadmill. I haven’t gone that far in a long time! Unfortunately, my Achilles tendon still bothers me when I run so I’m glad that I cut back on running lately but I still like to run shorter distances sometimes.

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I make sure to foam roll almost every time I go to the gym. My calves are always tight, my quads are usually sore, and my glutes get sore, so I really focus on foam rolling those three areas.

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If you’ve never used a foam roller before it’s a great way to loosen muscle knots. Foam rolling is also called myofascial release and when you use a foam roller to apply force to a muscle knot, the muscle fibers go from a bundled position into a straighter alignment.

When you apply pressure to a muscle that is sore or tight, you stimulate the Golgi tendon organ and create autogenic inhibition. This decreases the excitment in the muscle spindle, releasing the tension in the muscle. Basically, foam rolling helps break up knots in the muscle.

I usually start rolling back on forth on my calves until I find a spot that is really sore or tight. Then I apply pressure to this spot for at least 30 seconds. It takes at least 30 seconds for autogenic inhibition to kick in. The same goes for stretching -hold stretches for at least 30 seconds.

I usually foam roll all the tight spots on my calves, quads, and sometimes glutes, then I stretch. I break up the knots first with the foam roller and then I make sure to stretch them out.

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I also have a foam roller at home to use! You can find them for less than $20.

Foam rolling doesn’t always feel the greatest. It might hurt slightly depending on the muscle knots but it will really help later so stick with it! You can also use other object like a tennis ball to help break up knots.

When I was running and foam rolling at the gym, Jaden was taking a cooking class downstairs. My gym is also a park district so it worked out that his cooking classes were in the same building!

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Jaden loves to cook. He went to a breakfast and lunch cooking class and today he’ll be taking a dinner cooking class.

Last night, we went to my mom’s house and out to dinner with her to celebrate her birthday!

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We’re off to Jaden’s last cooking class. Have a great day and don’t forget to foam roll! :)

  • Do you foam roll or stretch?
  • Favorite thing to put peanut butter on?

 

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Birthdays, Shoulders, and CrossFit

Good morning!

Happy birthday to my wonderful mom today!

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This picture is old but it’s great picture of my mom with her two kids. :)

Tonight, we’re going out to dinner to celebrate! Love you, Mom!

Monday, I did a great cardio workout followed by a shoulder workout at the gym. I did four sets of 20 reps of three shoulder exercises. Sometimes, I’ll use lighter weights but do more sets and reps. It’s good to change things up! The shoulder exercises I did included:

  • bent arm lateral raises
  • upright rows
  • alternating arm front raises

Then I stretched.

IMG_20150622_130027Crazy eyes or what?!

Speaking of changing things up, I’m usually boring with my breakfast choices. I either have egg whites and yogurt or oatmeal. Yesterday, I decided to do something different and I made an egg white omelet with sauteed spinach, red onions, and feta cheese. It was a nice change from my normal boring egg whites.

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I also had a whole wheat English muffin with peanut butter. Yum!

Last night, I went to CrossFit and Jaden came with me.

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CrossFit is like a giant playground to an eight year old.

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He loves the rings.

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Yesterday’s CrossFit workout was great and hard, as usual. We practiced deadlifts and then did our workout of the day which included wall ball throws, push-ups, and ring rows. So many push-ups.

Today, we have a few errands to do and then Jaden has a cooking class later this morning.

Have a great day!!

  • What’s your favorite breakfast?
  • What exercise is hard for you?

 

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Food and Cardio

Hello, friends!

Breakfast

I don’t always feel like eating the morning, but I always make sure to have something little especially if I’m going to the gym. Today, I had plain Fage Greek yogurt mixed with one packet of stevia. Then I added blueberries and some Special K Protein cereal on top for some crunch.

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After breakfast and getting the kids to school, I headed to the gym.

Today, I just did an hour of cardio. I started with 15 minutes on the arc trainer. Then I did 30 minutes of intervals on the treadmill. I finished with 15 minutes on the stationary bike and some foam rolling.  I like to mix up my cardio rather than just spending an hour on the same machine.

After my workout, I taught my Women on Weights class.

Lunch

After teaching, I came home to make lunch. Like I’ve mentioned before I usually stick to the same lunch for a few weeks until I get sick of it and move on to something else. For the past few weeks, I’ve been eating grilled veggie flatbread pizza but then I decided to bring back a favorite – chicken tender salad with honey mustard dressing.

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This salad is amazing. I use Applegate Naturals chicken tenders and Bolthouse honey mustard dressing. I also add some croutons and carrots.

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Yum!

Thank you for all the birthday wishes on yesterday’s post. Tomorrow is my actual birthday and I am celebrating with a much needed hair appointment!

Don’t forget to enter my  Stubb’s BBQ sauce giveaway! There’s still time to enter!

  • What is your favorite cardio activity?
  • Cardio or weights? 
  • What did you have for lunch today?

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Filed under Breakfast, Fitness, Lunch, Running

Strawberry Lime Protein Smoothie

In anticipation of the nice weather that’s coming soon, I’ve put together a smoothie that’s perfect for a hot summer day – a strawberry lime protein smoothie. Cold, refreshing, and packed full of protein!

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I’m always looking for ways to add extra protein to my diet because I know how good it is for building and repairing muscles. It also helps keep you feeling fuller longer, boosts energy, and can help aid in weight loss. But really, this smoothie is just delicious!

Strawberry Lime Smoothie

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 container key lime yogurt
  • juice from one lime
  • 2 oz cashew or almond milk
  • 1/2 (approx. 5 oz) container Premier Protein Strawberries & Cream shake
  • 4-6 ice cubes

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Directions:

Blend all ingredients and enjoy!

238 calories/2 g fat/ 26 g carbs/ 29 g protein

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This is probably one of my favorite smoothies that I’ve ever made. I love the strawberry and lime combination. It’s prefect for breakfast, a snack, or after a workout to repair and rebuild those muscles!

And of course, since I was making a smoothie, the kids wanted a smoothie too. Jaden is allergic to dairy products so his smoothie contained: Silk dairy-free mango peach yogurt, frozen strawberries, almond milk, honey, and ice cubes.

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Everyone had a delicious smoothie this morning!

  • What’s your favorite smoothie recipe?
  • What’s your favorite smoothie flavor?
  • How do you add protein into your diet?

 

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Naturally Smart Eggs at Mariano’s

Recently, I received an email from Mariano’s about their exclusive release of Naturally Smart Eggs.

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Mariano’s is a grocery store local to Illinois, and I  wrote a post about the opening of a store near us a couple of years ago. They are an amazing store with an incredible produce, bakery, salad bar, and meat section.

Yum.

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Mariano’s continues to redefine the traditional grocery store by introducing an exclusive collection of new, health conscious products. The latest Chicagoland exclusive product is the new Naturally Smart Eggs which feature True Grade Hen2Home Technology.

These eggs are currently available at Mariano’s – three weeks before they debut nationally. This new egg technology introduces a new standard of quality to the fresh egg industry.

How the new eggs work: Each Naturally Smart Egg is marked with a Use By Date so the consumer knows exactly how fresh the egg is, Brand Identification for a safety stamp of authenticity, and a Trace Code which easily enables the consumer to find the exact farm the egg was sourced from by visiting http://www.naturallysmarteggs.com/.

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How cool is that?! Isn’t technology crazy awesome? You can actually find the farm an egg came from!

When I got the email about these new eggs, I was immediately intrigued. First, I love that each egg has a Use By Date on it. I am a little bit weird about expiration dates. I know some foods stay fine past their expiration date but I cannot eat a product after it’s expired. I rarely even eat leftovers so there’s no way I’m going to eat a food past its expiration date.

I am weird enough about expiration dates that I even write the date that I open my coffee creamer on the bottle.

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I’m the only one that drinks coffee in our house so I never finish a whole bottle before it goes bad. I drink it for exactly ten days after I write the date on it and then I pitch the rest. Hey, we all have weird food quirks, right?

I also thought it was really cool to see where your eggs come from. I thought this would be great for the kids. They would love to go online and put the number from the egg into the website and see where it came from.

So, we took a trip to Mariano’s. Luckily, we have one that’s only about 15 minutes away.

We bought a carton of the x-large eggs.

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They have large and x-large eggs for only $2 a dozen.

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While we were there, I was super excited to find the new Yasso bars and Arctic Zero ice cream!

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We bought the toffee crunch Yasso bars and the vanilla maple Arctic Zero. I have been looking everywhere for those Yasso bars and am a little too excited about eating one tonight.

We stopped at the smoothie bar on the way out and Jaden got a berry smoothie to try. They have a bunch of great smoothie flavors and I can’t wait to try some of the other ones!

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I eat eggs for breakfast every day and this morning was no exception.

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I loved the Naturally Smart Eggs and loved that each one has it’s own little expiration date stamp.

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Check out the Naturally Smart Eggs exclusively at Mariano’s in Illinois and nationwide soon!

Disclaimer: Mariano’s did contact me about writing this post but I bought the eggs myself. All opinions about eggs and expiration dates are my own. 

  • What do you think about the new egg technology?
  • Do you eat foods after their expiration date?
  • Have you ever tried Arctic Zero?

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Filed under Breakfast, Product Review

Is it Spring Yet?

Today is going to be 50 degrees in Chicagoland, and I saw a bird and a squirrel. I’m pretty sure spring is on its way!! This winter has felt like forever and I can’t wait for nice weather and to spend time outside.

Yesterday

Danny and I went to the gym yesterday morning. We worked on back and abs. Usually we do biceps also but my wrist is sore so we skipped biceps this time.

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The rest of the day we spent relaxing and enjoying the fact that it stays light out longer. Yay spring!

Today

The Bikini Body Mommy DietBet officially started today! There’s still time to join if you’re thinking about doing it! I started out my day with a normal breakfast – Fage Greek yogurt with strawberries and two egg whites.

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At the gym, I started with the Bikini Body Mommy strength workout. I did it once and then did some shoulder exercises including lateral raises, upright rows, overheard presses, front raises, cable lateral raises.

After my shoulder workout, I decided to try out the treadmill. I haven’t been on the treadmill in a long time and since I’ve been avoiding jumping exercises for the most part, I decided to see how my Achilles tendon felt. I walked for three minutes and ran for one minute for a total of 21 minutes.

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My Achilles felt fine at first, but the longer I went the more I could feel it starting to hurt. I finished up my walk/run and then foam rolled and stretched. It felt nice to run again but I don’t think my Achilles is going to agree. It’s so frustrating to be over hip surgery recovery and then have this happen. My plan is just to take it slow.

Have a great day!

  • How’s the weather where you live? Are you ready for spring?
  • What are you most looking forward to about being outside? I can’t wait to run outside, take family walks, and go on bike rides!

 

 

 

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