Category Archives: Working Out

New PowerBar Protein Shakes

Yesterday and today, I had the great pleasure of drinking a new PowerBar protein shake after my workout.

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I always try to consume a source of protein with 30 minutes after my workout and I love that I can throw these PowerBar shakes in my little cooler and be good to go! They are great for helping to rebuild muscle after a workout.

Each bottle is made with 30 grams of high quality protein and only 2-3 grams of sugar.

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They come in chocolate and vanilla flavors. My favorite is the chocolate, of course, while Danny’s is the vanilla. I love that they have a smooth delicious taste and are full of chocolate and protein as well as plenty of vitamins and minerals. :)

The shakes can even be served warm in the cold winter months or you can use them in an easy smoothie recipe.

Chocolate Espresso Shake

  • 1 Chocolate PowerBar Protein Shake
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee or espresso powder
  • 2 tbsp almond butter
  • Ice

Combine all ingredients in a blender and enjoy! This shake is perfect for the upcoming warm weather months.

PowerBar also makes incredible simple fruit energy food that’s great for long runs or long duration workouts. Great flavors and portable for on the go.

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I’m always looking for new protein shakes to try and these PowerBar shakes are definitely my new favorite!

Have a great day!

  • What do you eat/drink after a workout?

Disclaimer: PowerBar sent me these samples at no cost to me. All opinions are 100% my own and I only work with companies whose products I use and support. 

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Filed under Product Review, Working Out

Our Weekend

Good morning, friends! How was your weekend?

Ours was pretty low-key. Danny and my dad did some fixing up around our house and I worked for a bit on Saturday. We have a new program at my gym called Fit for Life and I train a team of ten people against two other teams. It lasts 12 weeks and it started today. I have the early morning team at 5:45 am so that’s going to take some getting used too!

Danny and I worked out together on Sunday. We did glutes, hamstrings, and core (Danny likes to throw in a few bicep curls). :)

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We finished up with a some cardio. Cardio isn’t always the funnest so we tried to make it a little funner by doing a cardio partner workout. One of us did an exercise while the other one rested. The point was to do your exercise fast so the other person rested for a short time.

Here are the exercises we did:

  • laps on the track (I rested very little for these since Danny is so fast!)
  • in and out jump squats x20
  • medicine ball slams x20
  • sit-ups x20
  • plank – as long as possible

We did each set of exercises four times each. It was a great workout especially after working legs.

I’ve still been following my workouts and macros from my coach at Best Fit Body. I have a little less than two weeks to go. I was doing really good for about three weeks with sticking to my diet perfectly and then I had a few off days. I was upset about it but honestly not every single day can be perfect.

I love to workout and have no problems there but I also love food. :) No one is perfect. You just have to get back on track right away which I’m doing.

I’m trying to add more green veggies to my day and I came up with a new breakfast that I have been loving – scrambled egg whites with asparagus, spinach, onion, and a Laughing Cow cheese wedge.

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The Laughing Cow cheese makes it so much better! I think cheese and chocolate can make any food better!!

Yesterday, the weather was beautiful in Chicagoland – almost 70 degrees. We had fun playing tag with Baylee outside. That dog is crazy! I love her crazy face in this picture.

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Of course, today is back to being cold and in the 30s. Not fun.

I hope you all have a great day!

  • What did you do this weekend?
  • Favorite cardio exercise?

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Filed under Breakfast, Fitness, Working Out

The Best Waffle

Good afternoon!

I’ve been so busy lately, I haven’t had time to post. Well, I’m back today!

On Saturday, my gym held its annual Nutrition Fair so I worked at that for part of the day. There was a bunch of different vendors and nutrition information.

One of the vendors was giving away samples of Gold Standard protein powder in the salted caramel flavor.

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I don’t normally reach for anything salted caramel flavor but I tried it after my workout on Sunday and it was delicious! I would definitely buy the full sized version of this flavor.

Sunday, Danny and I went to the gym for a quad, glute, and bicep workout.

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I have very tight calves and have a hard time not leaning forward when doing squats, so I always make sure to raise my heels by putting plates underneath then while doing squats. This helps with my form. Danny, of course, does great squats.

We also did some curtsey lunges, bicep curls, jumping lunges, reverse curls, and a couple other exercises.

I’ve had a couple great lunches these past few days that I wanted to share. Let’s start with the most delicious one first – Kodiak Cakes Power Cakes waffle!

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This waffle is so delicious. I always find a way to fit it into my macros. It’s a little higher in carbs than my normal lunches but I just adjust my carbs throughout the day so I can enjoy my protein waffle.

I like the Kodiak Cakes Power Cakes because it has a lot more protein than other brands. I use a serving and a half of the mix, one egg white (for a little more protein!), one tablespoon of mini chocolate chips, and water. I mix it all up and cook it in my waffle maker for about 7 minutes.

I top it with peanut butter which melts so perfectly and it’s almost like eating dessert. So darn delicious.

Also yummy, but not as delicious as a waffle, a big salad.

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I love salad and eat them at least once a day. Most of the time, I use butter lettuce because it’s my favorite and you can eat a lot of it for minimal calories. I top it with chicken, mini crouton mix, egg whites, carrots, and Bolthouse Farms honey mustard dressing.

I love the Bolthouse Farms dressings. They have awesome flavors that taste great. The honey mustard and salsa ranch are my two favorites.

Well, that’s all I’ve been up too lately! Have a great day!

  • Waffles or Pancakes?
  • Peanut Butter or Syrup?
  • Honey Mustard or Salsa Ranch?

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Filed under Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

Weekend Workouts

Good morning! How was your weekend? We didn’t have too much going on this weekend which was nice for a change!

On Saturday morning, Danny and I went to the gym and worked glutes, quads, and biceps.

It was a super tough workout which including lots of jumping lunges and lots of foam rolling afterwards.

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The rest of Saturday was spent grocery shopping, doing errands, and getting stuff done around the house.

On Sunday, we were back at the gym. I did a 30 minute HIIT session on the treadmill (not the best idea the day after leg day :) ). Danny worked on shoulders.

I wore my Mizuno running shoes.

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I recently heard that Starbucks has a new smoked butterscotch latte and I love butterscotch so I was excited to try it out after my workout on Sunday morning. Since I am following a macro based diet (fats/carbs/protein), I made sure to fit a short smoked butterscotch latte into my day.

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The short (tiny!) latte with 2% milk (I decided to splurge on 2%) has 23 carbs, 7 grams fat, and 6 grams protein. I took one sip and most definitely decided that it was not worth my 23 carbs and 7 grams of fat. It didn’t tasted anything like butterscotch!

I was super disappointed but glad I didn’t drink something I didn’t enjoy. Don’t worry, it didn’t go to waste – I gave it to my older son to drink.

I read good reviews about it online about how butterscotchy it was and how it compared to butterbeer from Harry Potter world. Mine tasted like coffee flavored watered down milk. Maybe I just got a bad one?!

Oh well.

After Starbucks, we stopped at the stop to pick up lettuce…and the Girl Scouts were out in front of the store.

Went to get lettuce, left with two boxes of Girl Scout cookies.

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It’s all about moderation and balance in life. Instead of fitting the coffee into my macros, I fit two tagalongs into my macros. :)

Tagalongs and thin mints are definitely the two best cookies ever made. Thank you, Girl Scouts.

This is the first weekend in a long time that I have stuck to eating perfectly so I was proud about that.

This morning, I was back at the gym for chest and triceps. I also rowed 3000 meters and walked for about 20 minutes on the treadmill while watching Nurse Jackie on Netflix.

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A couple of people mentioned how good Nurse Jackie was so I decided to try it out!

Have a great day!!

  • Favorite Girl Scout cookies?
  • Have you tried the new Smoked Butterscotch Latte?
  • Favorite Netflix shows?

 

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New Shoes and Whole Foods

Good afternoon!!

I decided to take the day off from the gym today because tomorrow is Jaden’s birthday and I had a few errands to run. I work tomorrow and then we’re going to Dave and Buster’s with Jaden tomorrow night so it made sense to get things done today.

He’s a having a couple of friends over on Saturday and then we’re having a family party Saturday evening.

My first stop today was to get new shoes!

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My old Nikes are pretty worn out so it was time for new ones. I ended up getting the Nike Metcon 2 shoes. They are pricey but worth it. And after a $20 off coupon and a couple of gift cards, I paid less than $50.

The Nike Metcons are great for cross training and have a firm, flat heel for stability during heavy lifting. I definitely need a shoe with more support and I’m excited to try these out at the gym!

I also stopped at Whole Foods – it’s been forever since I went to Whole Foods! I got my favorite sushi for lunch.

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I also got one of these cold brew High Brew coffees to try. I haven’t been sleeping good for the past few days so I could use the kick of caffeine.

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The salted caramel flavor was delicious. Yum! I just wish they were a little bigger.

I also picked up some dog treats for Baylee and Barbara’s High Fiber Cereal Medley.

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I try to get in between 20-25 grams of fiber a day but sometimes I fall a little short. I think this cereal will be great to add to my yogurt in the mornings.

This afternoon will be spent getting ready for Jaden’s birthday and studying.

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I have to renew my group fitness certification soon and I need 6 continuing education credits from NETA so I’m taking a muscle mechanics home study course.

Have a great day!

  • Do you like sushi? Favorite?
  • Favorite brand of shoes? 

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Shoulder, Core, and Cardio Circuit Workout

Good afternoon! This morning at the gym, I did a great circuit workout involving shoulders, core, and cardio.

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Here is the workout I did:

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I completed each circuit four times and I finished up my workout with an easy 12 minutes on the stationary bike.

I love incorporating the speed ladder into my workouts. It’s a great way to do something different and challenge your body.

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Post workout, I had this Powerful Yogurt protein drink that Danny recently found at the grocery store.

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I have never seen these before, so I was excited to try it and with 20 grams of protein, it’s perfect post-workout. The vanilla maple flavor was delicious!

When I got home, I took Baylee for a walk since the weather is halfway decent.

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She’s getting big!

After our walk, I made lunch.

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Egg whites with a little bit of reduced fat cheddar cheese, whole wheat English muffin with peanut butter, and sugar snap peas. So good!

Have a great day!

  • Did you workout today?
  • Favorite core exercise?
  • What did you have for lunch today?

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Filed under Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

Circuit Workout

Good afternoon!

This morning at the gym, I did a great circuit workout before teaching my Women on Weights class.

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I did the following circuit four times through:

  • 400 meter row
  • 10 box jumps
  • 10 kettlebell swings
  • kettlebell farmer’s carry on track (hold heavy kettlebell in one hand and walk on the track, switching hands halfway. Great for obliques!)

I did each exercise back-to-back, rested about 30 seconds, and then repeated for a total of four times. I really like doing circuit workouts because they are a great way to combine strength training and cardio and are a great way to keep your heart rate up.

After teaching Women on Weights, I came home and had a cup of Celestial Seasonings peppermint tea in my favorite gingerbread coffee mug.

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I usually add a few drops of the SkinnyGirl stevia extract. My mom gave this to me and it’s perfect to sweeten up the tea a little bit.

Danny and I also got in some great workout this weekend. On Saturday, we worked shoulder and core. We did some of the hardest sit-ups I’ve ever done in my life. On the decline bench, we held a plate behind our head and did sit-ups. It might not look too hard but it was killer. I could barely manage two sets of 10.

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On Sunday, we worked back and biceps.

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We also did more plate sit-ups but this time we did them on the floor making it a little easier. Still hard but easier than the decline bench. If you have a chance, definitely try out these sit-ups!

Have a great day!

  • If you’re a tea drinker, what’s your favorite tea?
  • Favorite core exercise? I love planks!

 

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Filed under Fitness, Uncategorized, Working Out

Leg and Glute Workout

Good afternoon! How are you all doing?

I’ve been working and working out. Yesterday when I got off of work, I did an easy cardio workout. 30 minutes on the stairmaster followed by 15 minutes on the stationary bike.

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After my workout, I had a thinkThin bar. I really like the salted caramel flavor.

Today I did a great leg/glute workout.

I did 4 sets and 10 reps of the following exercises:

  • Resistance band walking squats
  • Dumbbell deadlifts – 60 lbs
  • Split squats – 20 lbs
  • Barbell hip thrusts – 60 lbs
  • Walking lunges – 30 lbs
  • Weighted donkey kicks – 5 lbs
  • Single leg hip bridges
  • Leg press machine – 165 lbs
  • Seated leg curls – 65 lbs

After my workout, I took a selfie:)

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And foam rolled.

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In puppy news, Baylee loves laying on the vent in the bathroom. If we ever can’t find her, we just check the bathroom and she’s usually laying on her favorite vent…or eating toilet paper.

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Today will be her second week of puppy training school. Danny takes her every Thursday for eight weeks. Even though she can be a naughty puppy sometimes, she’s actually calmed down a bit and is very smart. She already can sit, stay, give you both her paws, lay down, roll over, and high five. She also rings a bell when she want to go outside. All thanks to Danny.

She also likes to eat toilet paper and shoes, knock over the garbage can, dig in the mud, attack slippers if we’re wearing them, chew the wall, and latch onto your pants when you’re walking. :) Fun times with a puppy.

Have a great day!

  • Did you workout today?
  • Do you have a pet? 

 

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Filed under Fitness, Uncategorized, Working Out

Weekend Workouts

Good afternoon! I hope everyone is having a great weekend!

It’s cold here in Chicagoland so we’ve just been laying low all weekend – working out, watching movies, and trying out a new enchilada recipe (check back tomorrow for the recipe!).

Danny I went to the gym yesterday and did a great shoulder, core, and cardio workout.

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I wore this new workout shirt from Target that Danny bought for me.

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I love the mesh sleeves!

Saturday night, we rented The Martian.

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I read the book awhile back and was excited to see that the movie just came out. I thought it was a really good movie and even the kids loved it!

Sunday morning we were back at the gym for a chest, triceps, and HIIT stairmaster workout.

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Danny was a badass with his tricep dips. I was not. :)

Our workout included:

  • chest presses
  • tricep dips
  • cable chest flyes
  • barbell tricep presses
  • decline chest press machine
  • cable tricep pressdowns

We finished our workout with level 20 on the Stairmaster for one minute followed by two minutes recovery. We did this for a total of 21 minutes.

I recently ordered new BCAAs from  bodybuilding.com that I’ve been drinking during my workouts.

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BCAAs (branched chain amino acids) help promote lowered body fat levels, increase strength, and improve muscle repair.

Well, that was pretty much our weekend! Have a great Sunday!

  • What did you do this weekend?
  • Have you seen/read The Martian?
  • Last movie you saw?

 

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Vertical Endeavors – Indoor Rock Climbing

For Christmas, the kids got gifts cards to an indoor rock climbing place near our house from my dad and stepmom.

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It’s called Vertical Endeavors and they have locations in Illinois and Minnesota. I have never been on a rock climbing wall before and really wanted to try it out so Danny and I decided to do it too.

You pay an admission fee and then you can purchase a rental pack which includes a shoes, a harness, a belay tool, and a chalk bag.

We got everything on and then had to wait for an orientation since it was our first time. The guide showed us the walls we were able to do as beginners and how to hook ourselves up. Then we got to the rock climbing!

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The kids loved it and were like pros right away. I couldn’t believe how fast they were able to get to the top!

We started out on the easy beginners wall and then moved on a walls that were a little more difficult.

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I was nervous at first because I do not like heights. At first, I would only go halfway up the easy wall before letting myself down.

I tried one of the harder walls and by the time I went back to the easy wall, it felt really easy and I was able to climb all the way to the top…as long as I didn’t look down. :)

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Indoor rock climbing is a great workout. It’s great for working out your full body but I felt it a lot in my upper body.

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We stayed and climbed for a couple of hours before we got tired and hungry. It was a great workout! My dad stopped by for a little while to watch which was actually nice because he was able to help hook us up. It was difficult to attach the hooks to our harness and they kids couldn’t do it without help.

Today

Danny and I headed back to the gym this morning and did a great shoulder/active rest workout – meaning we added some cardio in between sets with little rest.

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Our workout:

  • shoulder press//jump roping – 4 sets, 10 reps
  •  T-raises//jump roping – 4 sets, 10 reps
  • upright rows//burpees – 4 sets, 10 reps
  • kettlebell swings//farmer’s walk with kettlebell on the indoor track – 4 sets, 10 reps, 4 laps

Those burpees were killer! It was an awesome workout. We finished up with about 10 minutes on the stationary bike and some stretching.

That was our weekend – have a great day! :)

  • Have you ever been rock climbing?
  • What did you do this weekend?

 

 

 

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