Five Day Slim Down

Hey guys! I have a terrible confession to make. Last week I was really bad. I cheated almost every single day. I was bloated, feeling like crap, on a constant sugar high, and feeling like a beached whale. Don’t get me wrong, cheating doesn’t bother me. It’s just when it’s in excess that my body starts to feel the effects. When that happens I realize I am in dire need of focus and a cleanse. So I decided to do the 5 Day Slim Down from the new Tone It Up update this weekend. I wanted to debloat and really refocus myself for the rest of the bikini series. I am midway through day 4 currently and I am obsessed with this plan. It is such a delicious and healthy way to lose all that cheating bloat weight and calm the sugar cravings to really get you back to your clean and healthy eating. Something I have realized I just cannot go very long without anymore. Oh the good ole days of being a fat kid and eating whatever I wanted. It must have been 24/7 bloat since I never noticed it back then. I just hate feeling sluggish and puffy. So let me share with you some of the eats from this weekend since I finally have internet back in my life. Did you miss me? 😉

So far every morning I have started off with a bombshell spell (a metabolism drink they put together to speed up metabolism and aid in digestion) and a protein pancake topped with sliced strawberries and a kiss of honey. I seriously have become obsessed with protein pancakes. Be prepared to see them more than my beloved oatmeal the next few weeks because I am on a roll with them!

Before I eat the pancake and after the bombshell spell I do a 20 minute HIIT workout, like the plan recommends. I have been doing the HIIT the Beach workout from the Tone It Up Beach Babe DVD that was just released. I highly recommend buying this DVD, I have never been so challenged outside of the gym in my life. That’s a lot coming from this lifting junkie. My arms, legs, and abs have been burning all weekend. And the girls are super motivating and obviously I love them to pieces so it’s awesome being able to workout with them. I apologize for that shotty grammer. 😉

Then for lunch, I am going to skip some of the snacks, I have been having Chicken Teriyaki Collard Wraps. This is another recipe from the plan and it leaves you with a foodgasm. I kid you not, these girls worked really hard on this plan because all of the food is amazing. I cannot get enough of the chicken teriyaki wraps this weekend. I wish I could share the recipe, but unfortunately I can’t so if you want it buy the plan! It’s an amazing plan anyways and it teaches you a lot about timing of certain foods, superfoods, exercise, and eating clean. Plus the community is unmatched anywhere. I love those girls like they were my family and I haven’t even met any of them. Haha, that sounds creepy. Guess you would have to be in it to get it? Or I am just creepy… Valid.

Before dinner we have also been doing a 30 minute workout like the plan specifies. More on that in the next post!

For dinner my roommate and I have alternated between North Shore Garlic Shrimp and Quinoa (to die for) and Grilled Hawaiian Chicken with Pineapple Salsa. I can’t even believe I have been losing weight eating these to be honest. They are so filling and so delicious. Even my roommate who is really picky with flavor and portions agrees! If that’s not a stamp of approval I’m not sure what is!

I also have an amazing smoothie recipe to share with you that tastes like ice cream and I eat it with a spoon. My roommate and I have become obsessed with it and have been drinking it every single day for our mid-afternoon snack!

Crack Berry Smoothie

1/2 cup Frozen Mixed Berries (no sugar added)
1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder (I use Sunwarrior!)
1 frozen banana
A pinch of xanthan gum if you want it thicker like ice cream (thick without!)

Directions: Blend and enjoy your foodgasm!

Stay put I’m about to post my Martha’s Vineyard Pictures from this weekend! 🙂 I’m also going to talk more about my workouts!

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Triceps Overload

Happy Saturday, everyone! This is one of my favorite days of the week. Next to football Sundays of course. But alas, it is not football season unfortunately. I am currently watching the Bruins game so I apologize in advance if this post seems erratic in any way. The refs might as well have their helmets on backwards, they are calling the most ridiculous penalties right now.

I started off my morning with one of my favorite meals. I am still waiting for my protein powder to come in so this morning I started off with Mixed Berry Oatmeal. 1/4 cup oat bran and rolled oats cooked with 1.25 cups of water till the liquid is absorbed. Added 2 tbsp of wheat germ, 1 tbsp of ground flax seeds, blueberries, and sliced strawberries. On top I added some chia seeds and unsweetened shredded coconut. On the side I had the usual suspect of 4 egg whites and salsa.

After breakfast I went to the gym to focus on a problem area of mine, triceps. I know there is no such thing as spot training, but I would like to tighten up that muscle as much as I can while I work on burning the fat over it. 🙂 I also did 20 minutes on the elliptical incorporating 5 minutes of HIIT at the end for a little cross training action during this running plan.

Triceps Obliteration

Overhead Triceps Press 3×15
Close Grip Bench Press 3×20
Skullcrushers 3×15
Bent Over Triceps Kickbacks 3×15
Triceps Cable Rope Pulldown 3×15
Triceps Cable Rope Overhead 3×12

Since I am still missing my protein powder I made a smoothie today that was epic even without it. I used plain Oikos Greek yogurt to get in that protein, a cup of almond milk, some frozen strawberries and raspberries (organic unsweetened), and a frozen banana. It was sooooo creamy and delicious. I am rockin’ these smoothies lately.

For lunch, I had to usual salad beast with turkey. I would post my dinner for later, but it’s just leftovers from yesterday. Nothing exciting this weekend. I am trying to figure out how to start this term paper, but unfortunately my procrastination is getting the best of me. How am I supposed to concentrate when there happens to be a game on tv? Let alone, a playoff game. 😉 Yes, I am a tomboy… Yes, I know it’s not normal for a girl to like sports as much as I do haha.

I’m not sure why all my pictures are so dark! I apologize, it was actually really sunny and nice out today. I really need to invest in that camera. 😉 How did you all like my guest post? She’s awesome right?

Caprese Quinoa Salad

Hi everyone!

So I didn’t get home till super late last night after hanging out with my roommate for a little bit since she was gone all weekend and we are super chatty and enjoy driving around. But I did promise some people some recipes on Twitter, so here they are.

Yesterday morning I started off craving peanut butter, which is nothing new when it comes to my food. So I decided to make a big bowl of voluminous Peanut Butter x2 Oatmeal. 🙂 I followed a Clean Eating Chelsea recipe to make the oatmeal super voluminous and I changed it around by adding in my own little treats. I made it by combining 1/3 c rolled oats, 1 tbsp chia seeds, 1 cup water, and 1 tsp of vanilla the night before. You cook that until it boils, take it off the heat and cover it over night. In the morning you add 1/3 cup of almond milk and half a thinly sliced banana and cook until desired consistency and the banana is incorporated. I took it off the heat and added 1 tbsp of PB2, 1 tbsp of Creamy Peanut Butter and stirred. Then took put that in a bowl and topped with 1 tbsp of Homemade Honey Cinnamon Peanut Butter and the rest of the banana with more chia seeds. Omg it was so good and so peanut buttery! I highly recommend it if you love peanut butter. I was in peanut butter heaven.

For a delicious snack I was craving a smoothie… And chocolate covered strawberries. So I followed a Peanut Butter Fingers recipe and made a Chocolate Covered Strawberry Smoothie that was so thick I had to eat it with a spoon. Just how I like ’em! I used Vanilla Sun Warrior because I don’t own chocolate protein powder and just added 1 tbsp of cocoa powder versus 1/2 tbsp to really get that chocolately flavor.

For lunch I had an epic salad beast, which was changed up from the usual one you see on here. It had kale, spinach, cucumbers, red bell peppers, turkey, and Annie’s Lite Raspberry Vinaigrette. It was delicious and seriously hit the spot!

Let’s talk about the title of this post. My dinner! I followed a recipe I found on the TheDiva-Dish.com blog and it was fantastic. Only I am a massive carnivore so I added some chicken sausage. Sorry, I really can’t eat vegetarian. I try really hard! But I give crazy props to all of you who can be vegetarian and vegan. I believe her recipe is completely vegan? But don’t quote me on that, it is definitely vegetarian though if you don’t add meat like I did!

Tomato Basil Quinoa Salad (Aka Caprese Quinoa Salad)
Serves 1

Ingredients:
1/4 cup of Quinoa
1 Spicy Italian Chicken Sausage
10 Cherry Tomatoes chopped
1/4 cup of Garbanzo Beans (Chickpeas)
1/2 cup Spinach
A few fresh basil leaves
1 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tsp + Minced Garlic
A little sea salt to taste

Directions:
Cook the quinoa according to instructions and set aside. In a food processor (I used a magic bullet) combine the spinach and basil till chopped up and fine then set aside. In a small bowl combine balsamic, oil, and garlic and whisk together. Cook the sausage in a skillet till warmed through. Combine everything together on a plate and enjoy!

It’s super simple and super delicious. I topped mine with nutritional yeast to make everything super creamy and cheesy, while adding some extra vitamins and antioxidants. I can’t get enough of that stuff, seriously. The whole thing tasted like a caprese salad. It was so good and really filled me up so I highly recommend it. My roommate and I are going to be trying a bunch of new recipes this week from different things I have found on blogs and on fitness websites recently so keep an eye for that! We bought the Eat Clean Cookbook 2, by Tosca Reno so expect to see family dinners every Sunday from us as well! I also cannot wait to share with you all the new insane workout I created for us to get us in shape for bikini season. It is not for the faint of heart and is really intense. It has tons of weight training, combined with active rests and plyos, plus HIITs! I am so excited and proud of it, so I can’t wait to share it with you! Let me know if you try any of these recipes and if you like them!

As always, keep an eye out this week. I convinced my roommate to do a guest post about her healthy chocolate covered strawberries! They are super delicious and low in calories and sugar so they don’t break the diet bank. The only sugar actually comes from the fructose found in the strawberries! I can’t wait for her to come on here and share it with you guys!Have an amazing day, everyone!

 

Spaghetti Squash=Heaven

Seriously, that formula is true. But I will get to dinner in a second and it’s worth the wait. 🙂

I had to work again today so nothing really exciting to report on the personal front. Except for the crazy customer I had that yelled at me for overcharging her by 84 cents by accident. Yes, she made me do the full return to get her 84 cents back. Mind you this was a computer error, not my fault haha. Some people, I think, just need a hug and a chill pill. 🙂 That’s the answer to world peace, mark my words.

Anywhoot, I have to tell you about my breakfast!!!! OMG! IT WAS SO GOOD! Sorry, calm now. Kind of. But seriously, it was easily one of the best breakfasts I have had in a really long time. I found the recipe on another favorite blog of mine, Chocolate Covered Katie, and it’s for Baked Cookie Dough Oatmeal. Um hi… That sounds amazing before you even start to taste it. I had crazy high hopes since I am a cookie monster. It didn’t disappoint, it was love at first bite people. You must all make this now in whatever version you please. But you must try it! Here’s the link. http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2011/03/15/cookie-dough-baked-oatmeal/

I made it the last night so that I wouldn’t be in a rush this morning and it was ahhhhmazing this morning. Holy crap. And it filled me up through lunch time since my eating schedule gets all whacky at work. I also took about 1/4 of that lovely little cake and put it in some almond milk for fun while I was getting ready for work. I liked it both ways. 🙂

When I got out of work I went straight to the gym since I knew I would lose motivation if I came home first. I completed the EPIC Cardio workout I was going to do like last week or so and I was a sweaty beast. Seriously, Jennifer from @fortheglow is insane. She has some crazy hard, crazy amazing workouts. This cardio routine she wrote was intense. I was breathing so hard and dripping in sweat. Here’s what my speeds looked like. Forewarning: I am a slow poke and these were fast for me. Judge. 😉

Minute 1: 6.5 mph
Minute 2: 5.5 mph
Minute 3: 6.5 mph
Minute 4: 5.5 mph
Minutes 5-8: 7.5 mph for 20 seconds, rest for 10 repeat till you hit minute 8.
Minute 9: 5.5 mph
Minute 10: 3.8 mph
Minute 11: 6.5 mph
Minute 12: 5.0 mph
Minute 13: 6.5 mph
Minute 14: 5.0 mph
Minutes 15-18: 7.5 mph for 20 seconds, rest for 10 repeat till minute 18.
Minute 18: 5.0 mph
Minute 19: 3.8 mph
Minute 20: Cool Down

I covered 2 miles with that! I was stoked! Haha. I left the gym feeling like my lungs were in a vice grip, which I think is the point of those tabata sprints. You only have to hate your life for 3 minutes. Everyone can handle that! Jokes.

I was so excited for dinner tonight I couldn’t even stand it. I haven’t had spaghetti squash since July and I wanted it to make a re-appearance back into my life. So I roasted up some spaghetti squash in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, middle side down on a greased sheet, while my sweaty mess of a self showered. Then I cooked up some Thin & Trim Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage with some marinara, garlic gold parmesan nuggets, and minced garlic. Threw that sauce on the spaghetti squash that I pulled apart with a fork and dumped a truck load of delicious nutritional yeast on top. Oh holy goodness this may be my new favorite meal. It was so good. Paired with healthy garlic bread, the same from the other day, I was in food heaven. I wanted to marry it haha. I am such a dramatic person sometimes.

It doesn’t look that pretty, but I promise you it was so darn good. I hope everyone had an awesome Saturday. Unfortunately I need to find the motivation to open my neuroscience notes and start studying before I fail out of college. 😉 My night is shaping up to be so boring.

Good Eats

Hey all!

I hope you all liked the focus of earlier’s post! I know it was so much more serious than you are used to seeing on here. But don’t worry tonight’s post is light and full of delicious food!

I started off my morning bright and early before my class. Every time I am forced to wake up that early oatmeal is my best friend. I made another batch of my standard chocolate peanut butter oats with sliced banana and chia seeds. 🙂 They never let me or my belly down in the morning.

I was ravenous with hunger when I got out of class because if you don’t feed me every 2-3 hours I become quite the diva. So I took a handful of almonds and added some goji berries for a lovely little trail mix combination that I enjoyed thoroughly. I highly recommend goji berries, they are quite delicious and seriously good for you. Don’t even get me started about raw almonds, they are my weakness next to peanut butter. Shocking, I know. 😉

Guess what I had for lunch today before the gym?! Anyone? Did someone guess salad beast, why yes you would be correct. Want to take another stab at what kind?! CHICKEN AND APPLE?! Man, you guys are good. I have become a little over obsessed with this salad and feel the need to now change it up for you guys before you get bored with me haha.

At the gym my roommate and I completed a shoulders and abs workout that looked like this:

Lateral Raises 3×15
Front Raises 3×15
Shoulder Presses 3×12
Upright Rows 3×15
Plank: Hold for as long as you can
Side Plank on each side: Hold for as long as you can
Russian Plate Twists 3×24
V Sits 3×24
Crunches on the machine 2×30, 1×40

My abs were burning! Haha, I am such a wimp. But seriously, I felt this all up and down my abs.

Apparently I am in the mood to share all my food so why the heck not. For my snack after the gym I made a strawberry and banana smoothie. In the magic bullet went:

6 strawberries
1 banana
2 tsp chia seeds
A small scoop of vanilla chobani
Splash of almond milk
1 cup of water
1 scoop of Sun Warrior Vanilla Protein

Calmed my ravenous hunger since I had to stop at the grocery store after the gym while my stomach was growling. What a test in self control.

Onto my dinner that I was/am super excited about! One of my favorite soups is broccoli and cheese soup… However, it is super caloric in it’s normal creamy form. As I was reading the PBFingers blog I love so much I stumbled upon her new recipe for healthier broccoli and cheese soup. Under 300 calories per serving… AKA I was so ready to make this it wasn’t even funny! By the way, it was delicious and I am obsessed with this soup and want another bowl. But I must have some self control and save it for tomorrow for lunch… And dinner… Sshhhh. Here’s the link to her recipe. http://www.pbfingers.com/2012/02/03/healthy-broccoli-cheese-soup/

On the side I toasted up a deli flat, spread some smart balance on it, and topped with Garlic Gold Sea Salt Nuggets, Garlic Powder, and Sea Salt… Yes I like things that garlicky and salty. Judge me.

After dinner I was craving something pretty sweet so I rounded it out with a cara cara orange. Seriously, I may be obsessed with these. They are so darn good!

I hope everyone had an awesome day! I’m going to go watch the Celtics try to hold their own against the Bulls. The Bulls just happen to be the best team in the NBA currently. We are number 7 haha.

Honey Glazed Salmon!

Hey guys!

So today after class and cleaning out my apartment, my roommate and I headed to the overly packed gym for a quick biceps and triceps workout. Emphasis on the quick. It’s the same thing as last Monday’s workout only I supersetted some of the exercises to get out of there faster since there were people literally everywhere!

Hammer Curls supersetted with Triceps Kickbacks 3×12
Biceps Curls 3×12
Triceps Overhead Rope supersetted with Cable Biceps Curls 2×12, 3xFail
Triceps Pull Down 3×12

Then we headed to the grocery store and I had no money to my name so it was a pretty produce filled trip! But that’s okay because that’s all I eat anyways. 🙂 No more Cheerios to gorge myself on this time. I picked up something new too! Cara Cara Oranges. Has anyone heard of them? I guess they are supposed to be super good and they have a ton of antioxidants and vitamins, so why not, right? I also picked up dinner, which happened to be delicious!

Honey Glazed Salmon
Serves 1
Adapted from the Dashing Dish

Ingredients:
1/2 tbsp Honey
1/2 tbsp Soy Sauce
1 tsp minced garlic or garlic powder
1 packet of Stevia

Directions:
Set your oven to broil. Put the salmon on a baking sheet and cover with the glaze on both sides along with salt and pepper. Cook 4-5 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Enjoy your salmon!

It was some serious good eats. I paired the salmon with some steamed broccoli with salt and garlic powder. My tummy is seriously happy and full right now! And it is so stinkin’ easy, which is something you can expect from me since I am in college and I have no attention span. I like meals that are done in under 30 minutes. Also, I only cook for myself, but if you have more people just double or triple the recipe. I have made it on a larger scale too. The cook time is still the same!

I’m off to do all the homework that I didn’t do this weekend or today. Woops! My levels of procrastination are so ridiculous sometimes. Senioritis is in full swing! Have a great night guys and let me know if you try that fish! It’s delicioussss!

Protein Pancake and Abs Circuit

Happy Hump day everyone!

So this morning I woke up starving due to my late night. I have this problem where I think too much and night and just want to get everything accomplished in the wee hours of the morning since I am so unproductive during the day. Haha, my procrastination is so strange. Anyways, I wrote a grocery list for next week last night, which is fun. I planned my entire dinner meals for the week. You guys will be seeing some broccoli and cheddar soup and some salmon. All I have wanted lately is salmon for some reason.

Anyways, moving on to this morning. I woke up wanting a protein pancake. However, most of the time I find them too dry and boring. Plus, most of the time I hate cooked fruit so I never really like blueberries or strawberries actually in the pancake. I find it to be too mushy and I am a big texture person. So I decided while I was at the store yesterday to try out some carob chips. I have never tried them before, but I did read somewhere that they were healthier than chocolate chips but they still have a chocolately flavor. I tried the chips on their own just to see what they would taste like and let me tell you something people, they are very interesting. Haha, that doesn’t sound like a good thing, but they aren’t bad. I just don’t know how to describe them. However, in the pancake they tasted almost exactly like chocolate chips so I was okay with it. I ramble a lot, sorry. Moving on to the actual pancake. It was delicious! And a beast. I had to flip it with a knife and a spatula at the same time and it was so big I was late for class trying to finish eating it haha. Oh the things I put a priority to. Oh and I have a picture of it! I don’t know what’s going on with my computer back home but I am in my school’s library so it should be able to upload some things. I based the actual foundation of this pancake off of the Tone It Up new Protein Pancake recipe. The old one was so ridiculously dry I needed a gallon of water to get it down. I’m not sure why so many people are obsessed with it haha, but this one is pretty awesome with peanut butter, sliced banana, and chia seeds on top. I know shocking topping for my food. 😉

Peanut Butter Carob Chip Protein Pancake
Serves 1

Ingredients:
3 tbsp protein powder (I used vanilla sun warrior, but chocolate would be amazing and so would chocolate peanut butter, just be careful with nutritional stats!)
1/2 Banana
3 Egg Whites or Egg White Substitute (For liquid egg whites, 9 tbsp)
1 tbsp Powdered Peanut Butter (I used PB2)
1/2 tbsp Almond Milk (Unsweetened Vanilla is the best)
1 tbsp Carob Chips or Chocolate Chips depending on preference

Directions:
Mash the banana in a bowl. Then add the rest of the ingredients except for the carob chips and mix together. Pour the batter into a heated up skillet on medium low sprayed with cooking spray. Then add the carob chips on top while the pancake is cooking. Flip, or try to flip, over! Once cooked on both sides, remove, add favorite desired toppings and enjoy!

It was an incredibly filling breakfast due to the protein powder and peanut butter. I think the egg whites also helped! Seriously, I most definitely recommend it. If you can’t find powdered peanut butter use the real stuff! I just like the powdered in this cause it’s easier to mix in and it has less calories. Since I add the real stuff on top I cut down the calories and fat where I can. Also, you most definitely don’t have to use carob chips. When I run out I will be switching over to chocolate chips, I think. I am just a big fan of the real stuff. 🙂 Also, drop out the peanut butter and chips add some cinnamon and you can add whatever you want to this recipe! Experiment with different flavors of protein powders, use different fruits, the world is your oyster with these. 🙂

Moving on to my new ab circuit. As I said, I thought last week was a little too easy and I wanted something a bit more challenging this week. I will be doing this later on today and will post either tonight or tomorrow how I liked it! As always, I am not a fitness professional… yet. So make sure to check with a professional before starting a new exercise routine and if it hurts don’t do it!

Shoulder and Abs Workout, modified:
Front Raises 3×15
Lateral Raises 3×15
Overhead Press 3×15
Upright Rows 3×15
Tummy Tucks 3×20 each leg
Plank, as long as you can hold
Slide Planks, each side hold as long as you can
Crunches on a machine, 3×25
Russian Twists with 10 pound weight, 3×15
V Sits 3×20 each leg
Leg Up Crunches 3×20
Side Plank “Hugs” 3×15 each side
Plank, as long as you can hold again

I stole some of these moves from the Tone It Up Valentine’s Day workout because I think some of them are really challenging. Also, I am combining this with EPIC Cardio. This is a plan I found on the Everyday Glow blog written by Jennifer. She’s amazing pretty much and always answers any health questions I have on Twitter. This is a patent pending program and I can see why! It seems really intense. I will obviously post my reaction along with the weight training. 🙂 But here is what it is. This is completely her program, 100% of the credit goes to her, I am just reposting it on here to be more convenient for you guys. But here’s the link to that post as well explaining it more.

http://everydayglow.com/epic-cardio-method/

EPIC Cardio Method:
This is the exact version that I will be doing today. The straight running version, no plyos.
Minute 1: Run at a challenging pace
Minute 2: Jog
Minute 3: Run at a challenging pace
Minute 4: Jog or briskly walk
Minutes 5-8: Sprints Tabata style, 20 seconds sprint, 10 seconds recover, repeat 8 times.
Minute 8: Run at a challenging pace
Minute 9: Walk
Repeat once more for 2 cycles of this method.

I am really excited and mildly intimidated by this cardio program, but as usual I will try anything once!

I hope everyone is enjoying their Wednesday. Do something good for your booty today even if it’s just a 60 second wall sit. 😉