Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Random Tuesday happenings

I decided to sleep in an extra 45 minutes this morning instead of getting up to run before Wayman left for work. I've dreaded that decision ever since :/ I just can't seem to get my day started on the right foot without the endorphins. Ugh! 

Usually I run after I take the kids to school but they've both got bronchitis. Austin was well enough to go back to school today, but not Carson. I knew running early this morning would be my only chance but when my alarm went off at 5:55, I ignored that voice in my head and decided to stay in my cozy bed instead. I should have listened to that dang voice!

Since I was in a funk all morning, I decided to do something productive and clean out my closet. Not just clean out my closet, but swap everything in mine to Wayman's and vice versa. I just like the layout of his closet better. I swapped dressers with him also. Is it sad that things like that completely excite me?! Luckily, he could care less about my maniac habits of changing things around. I'm about halfway done but took a break to eat lunch and catch up on Pinterest while the boys nap :)

Along with having a nicely organized and clean closet, it's also much emptier. I went through and put everything that didn't fit anymore in a big pile on my bed. There goes 3/4 of my wardrobe!! While that's all find and dandy, I'm realllly wishing I could go on a big shopping spree for new spring/summer clothes that actually fit. Unfortunately, I don't have an open-ended budget to work with :) I will definitely be hitting up a few stores this weekend though :)

And just for fun- here's what I ate for lunch today. It was YUM-O (can't help it, I'm watching Rachel Ray!)

Spinach salad with cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, feta cheese & turkey pastrami with balsamic vinaigrette. On the side- baby carrots with jalapeno ranch and a juicy orange.

Happy Tuesday everyone! Will you be watching Biggest Loser like me tonight!? (I am a die-hard BL fan, but I am NOT a fan of all the drama this season)

Oh, and P.S.- Wayman is ending practice early tonight so I'll get to run when he gets home. Happy camper :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

What's for dinner?

Monday: meeting at church, Subway for dinner
Tuesday: Quinoa "fried rice" & terriyaki chicken in the crockpot
Wednesday: No cooking! Church Night
Thursday: citrus salmon & roasted brussel sprouts
Friday:  Jalepeno turkey burgers w/ pepperjack cheese, mushrooms & turkey bacon, sweet potato fries (husband requested this meal!)
Saturday: Dinner with friends
Sunday: feta & artichoke chicken thighs, salad & fruit

Workout Log 2/27-3/3

Monday: 2 miles, 20 min elliptical, 10 min strength & abs
Tuesday: REST
Wednesday: 3 miles, 20 min elliptical
Thursday: 3 miles, 20 min elliptical
Friday: 20 min elliptical
Saturday: Blossom Trail 10k/6.2 miles(unofficial time according to my Nike+ 1:07)
Sunday: 2 miles, hill climbing/hiking 20 minutes

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Whats for Dinner?

I'm only "cooking" once this week....I'm on a mission to clean out our freezer in the garage so the rest of the week I'll be using meat & crockpot meals I've already made and froze. Easy week!

Monday-ricotta & spinach stuffed chicken breasts, roasted asparagus, baked apples
Tuesday- pulled pork sandwiches, sweet potato fries & pears
Wednesday- no cooking! Church night
Thursday- BBQ chicken in the crockpot
Friday- pizza & salad
Saturday- eating at Mom & Dad's (Race Day- 10k)
Sunday- eating at Mom & Dad's

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Staying on track when you're away from home

I don't know if its just me- but I do great eating at home when I'm in my normal environment and routine. The second you take me away from my "normal", I often have a hardtime making good decisions. I get lazy and don't think about the reprecussions. 

This past weekend we went on a day trip. We took the kids to Monterey to visit my brother's girlfriend and go to the aquarium.  

I knew ahead a time there would be LOTS of temptation (Fish & Chips, clam chowder, Ghiradelli chocolate store...heaven right?) so I knew I had to be prepared.

Sundays are normally my long run days, but since I wasn't going to be able to run, I got up at 4:30am and did the elliptical before we got ready to go (left at 6:30). We also walked around for at least 6 hours so I figured that counted as calories burned also :)

As far as eating- that was gonna be the tough part! I planned out my whole day on My Fitness Pal the night before and tried my best to stick to it.

Heres how my day looked:

Breakfast (5:30 am, ate at home before we left)
Oatmeal Banana Muffin
Egg White omelet with veggies & 1 Tbsp cheese

Morning snack: (8:00am, ate in the car on the drive there)
Greek Yogurt & a handful of cashews

Lunch: (11:00am, packed from home, ate by the ocean)
Turkey pastrami sandwich on whole wheat bread
1/2 serving Pop Chips
Baby Carrots & Cucumber slices dipped in Tzatziki

Dinner: (3:30pm, Bubba Gumps- early dinner because we were all hungry and there was already a 2 hour wait! Did not order what I planned cause it didn't sound good once I got there)
Cajun Charbroiled chicken sandwich with bacon, pepperjack cheese and fresh guacamole (ate half sandwich)
French fries (fairly small portion, ate them all!)
2 of Austin's popcorn shrimp
-did NOT leave dinner stuffed at all. I know for a fact I ate way more calories than planned, but portion wise I was okay

After dinner: (5-7pm, walking down Cannery Row in Monterey)
Ghiradelli chocolate sample & chocolate covered strawberry (did NOT get the ice cream sundae or brownie like everyone else!)
Small shrimp cocktail (split it with Wayman)
1/2 the bread roll that came with shrimp cocktail

All said and done- I know I went way over calories. I was tempted to weigh myself the next morning but decided not to and to just wait until Friday when I normally weigh. 

So it IS possible to stay on track while you are out of your normal environment, but man its hard. I wanted so badly to just forget my healthy habits and tell myself I'd "just start again tomorrow"...but I would only be hurting myself. I knew how I'd feel after eating something I normally wouldn't eat and it just wasn't worth it. 

I'm proud of my decisions & also happy that we saved a lot of money by eating breakfast at home & packing our lunches. I packed the same lunch for all of us (except the kids got yogurt & applesauce also) and they ate every single bite. It was nice to spend the day feeling good & not stuffed :)

And just for a fun, here are a couple pictures from our day:
{Inside the aquarium}
 {On the balcony, outside the aquarium}
 {My brother, my mom, me}

 {Haylie & I}
 {The whole gang, minus Haylie, after dinner}
 {On the beach}
 {Love}
 {Chocolate covered strawberry...delish!}

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Workout Log 2/19-2/25

Sunday: 20 min Elliptical, walked around Monterey all day (6 hours)
Monday: 3 miles
Tuesday: 2 miles, 20 min elliptical, upper body & abs, 2 mile walk
Wednesday: Rest day
Thursday: 1 mile walk, 30 min elliptical
Friday: 3 miles, 2 mile walk
Saturday: 5 miles

Total miles: 18 miles

20/20/20

Half marathon training has officially begun! 

I'm using Hal Higdon's program (again) because I liked it so much last time. I made a few changes (added a few weeks & upped my mileage from 10 miles to 12 miles for the long runs towards the end)

My running days are Monday, Wednesday & Friday, and then long runs on Sunday. The kids are both in school on Mon, Wed, Fri so it just makes the most sense to get my runs done while I'm flyin solo. 

That leaves Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday as cross training, strength & the so-not-my-favorite...rest day. I'll be totally honest, I almost never take a rest day. I'm not just training for the half, I'm also training and working to lose weight. I feel like getting my 60 minutes of daily exercise is crucial and I get so cranky when I don't workout. Now before you tell me my body needs a day to rest, relax :) I DO take it easier than normal at least one day a week. Meaning instead of running 3 miles, I might walk a couple miles and then do the elliptical for a little while. On an effort scale of 1-10, I probably give it about a 4 or 5 on my "rest day". 

I wanted to come up with a way to challenge my body because I'm currently at a standstill when it comes to weight loss (remember my goal to lose 9 pounds in February? Yeah....I weigh the same today as I did on February 1). My body is used to running, so it takes either a) moving a lot faster or b) moving a lot longer to make any sort of difference with the scale. In order to shock my metabolism a little, I've created (my own) workout plan for my non-running days during the week. 

For lack of a better name- I'm just going to call it the 20/20/20

I am going to bike for 20 minutes, run for 20 minutes & do the elliptical for 20 minutes- all in a circuit, one right after the other. Also important to mention, is that I will almost always have Carson with me on these days. So that means for the 20 min bike ride- I'll be pulling him in the bike trailer. For the 20 minute run, I'll be pushing him in the jogging stroller. The added resistance makes a big difference when you aren't used to doing it everyday. 

I am working on getting a navigation bar at the top of my page (complete with a total makeover for the blog- can't wait) and I will have a link to my Workout Page. I am going to update it daily to keep track of my workouts. For now, I'm still tracking it, but I will just post my Workout Log in the form of a post at the end of the week (like I did last week). So basically- when you see 20/20/20...you'll know what I'm talking about.

I think its also important to note that I'm not JUST focusing on cardio. While cardio is DEFINITELY my favorite, I do understand that strength training and stretching is just as important. I found a set of daily strength workouts on Pinterest that I've been doing for about 2 weeks. It takes about 10-15 minutes and then I add a few extra minutes of abs each night also. Basically- each day of the week there is a different set of exercises to work a different muscle group. For instance, Mondays are butt, thighs & quads. Tuesdays are upper back, shoulders & arms. Wednesdays are lower back & abs. You get the point :) So I will continue to incorporate those into my daily workout also. I have a Yoga DVD that I've used once and I'd love to start doing that more often as well. 

All broken down, I usually work out an hour each day. 45 min of cardio and then 10-15 min strength. Sometimes I do longer cardio (even if its just walking back and forth to pick my son up from school).

I am hoping that with a new attitude towards cleaning up my eating even more and the extra exercise, my body will decide to let go of these last 35-40 pounds. The first 70 came off fairly easy (don't get me wrong, I worked HARD) but I never had a 6 month long plateau like I'm currently experiencing. So- hopefully this will work. If not- at least I know I'm doing all I can to live healthy!

Monday, February 20, 2012

What's for dinner?

Monday- whole wheat fettucine chicken Alfredo, salad and pears
Tuesday- chicken fajitas and homemade Refried beans
Wednesday- No cooking! Church night.
Thursday- nspork chops, hasselback potatoes & roasted asparagus
Friday- Terriyaki chicken & veggies, quinoa "fried rice"
Saturday- salmon burgers & strawberry spinach salad
Sunday- eating at mom & dads

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Workout Log 2/12-2/18

Sunday: 5 miles
Monday: 2.5 miles + 20 min elliptical
Tuesday: 3 miles + 20 min elliptical
Wednesday: 2 miles
Thursday: 2 miles + 20 min elliptical
Friday: 3.5 miles + 20 min elliptical
Saturday: 5k race (PR!)

Total miles for the week: 21

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Race Judicata 5k

Today kicked off "race season" for me. We (Rebecca, Wayman & I) literally have races planned every other weekend (or every) for the next 4 months! 

Its quickly becoming my favorite time of year!

And what better way to kick off our race season than by all three of us PR'ing!?
____________

Rebecca & I waiting for the race to start. We're those people that get there 30 minutes early to people watch :)
 My biggest fans :) (and one little boy who was still sleepy)
 He seriously can never just smile right for the camera
 Only person missing is my brother who had to work :(
 I love standing on curbs....my only chance at being taller (or even) with anyone else!
 The front of the pack
 Starting off strong...actually too strong...but isn't that how it always happens!?
 The boys and my parents were waiting about 1/8 mile up from the finish line. Last year when I did this race, the boys came out and ran the last little stretch with me. This time, only Austin ran cause Carson had just fallen and hurt his hand. 
 Here we go! I'm not sure if he was prouder to run alongside the big people or if I was prouder to have him by my side. Love to pass on the love of running to him, and was so sweet to have him cross the finish line with me
 And because my husband likes to make sure he never misses a shot (he knows I'll complain about the ONE angle he didn't catch...he's learned)...here is a series of pictures as we crossed the finish line. 
Step-by-Step





 Running definitely isn't a glamourous sport (unless your Skinny Runner and then you look perfect even after running an Ultra Marathon!...not that Im jealous or anything)
 After we took a quick shower and got dressed, we went out to breakfast to re-fuel :) 


Race Re-cap:
This 5k course was fairly flat, with only 2 medium-ish sized hills (underpasses going under freeway). It definitely wasn't a very scenic route, but it wasn't horrible and it beat running the same Eaton trail at Woodward that we most often do. I kept a steady 10:45 pace the entire time and was surprised at how comfortable I was. I got really, really tired towards the end and wanted to stop to catch my breath but when I looked at my phone and it said I only had .25 miles to go, I decided there was NO way I was going to slow down when I was so close to the end. On my daily runs, I almost always run a 11:30-12:30 pace. I was determined to PR this time, no matter how hard I had to push myself. My previous best 5k time was 35:05 and today, my official chip time was 33:47. Shaved over a minute off my time! I was definitely excited and know that I can keep training longer and harder to eventually run a sub 30 minute 5k. It might take me another year to get there, but I'll do it! I'm not really focusing on my speed for my half training, Id rather run a slower and easier pace so that I can run the whole, or almost the whole thing. Speaking of half training- it starts on Monday! 

Next race: Blossom Trail 10k on March 3

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Winner Winner Quinoa Dinner

So I posted on Valentines Day that I was going to whip up a scrumptious dinner for my love. 

Not to toot my own horn- but I definitely did not disappoint! And like I always say, I can't take all the credit...unless pinning a delicious recipe on Pinterest counts ;)

On the menu was:
-Asparagus & Cheddar stuffed chicken breasts with red pepper flakes (pre-made...can't take credit for those)
-Garlic green beans with bacon crumbles
...and the scene stealer:
-Quinoa burgers (or patties or cakes or whatever clever name you can come up with)


(and P.S. I am NOT a food photographer in the least bit. I'll keep my day job)
They were amazing, and even better the next day! 
I changed the recipe up a bit so I'll just include the recipe here

What you need:
1 cup dry quinoa, it will make 2 cups prepared. Prepare according to package (or google it!)
1 cup cheddar cheese
1/2 cup cottage cheese
1/2 cup grated or finely chopped carrot
1/2 cup grated or finely chopped zucchini
3 eggs
2 Tbsp whole wheat flour
2 green onions, chopped finely (I think red onions would be good too)
1/2 tsp of splenda or sugar (I used 3 packets of splenda)
Salt & Pepper (a few shakes)
1/4 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp garlic powder
EVOO for pan frying

Combine the cooked quinoa, cheeses, carrots, zucchini, eggs, flour, onions, splenda/sugar, salt & pepper cumin & garlic powder. Mix well (it will be a sticky mess)

Heat a non-stick skillet and a couple of teaspoons of EVOO over medium low. Using 1/4 cup measuring cup, drop mixture into pan and lightly flatten to 1/2 inch thick. Fry until golden brown (approx 5 min each side). Makes 9 burgers

Per Burger:
132 calories
Protein: 8g
Fat: 5g
Fiber: 2g
Net Carbs: 12g
Sodium: 200mg

The recipe I found on pinterest suggested topping them with Tzatziki. While that probably would be delicious, we topped ours with 1/2 Tbsp of Litehouse Jalapeno Ranch. Umm...heaven on a plate. Seriously. Wayman & I fought over the leftovers the next day. 

I will definitely be making these again soon! They could be a meal in themselves. And they are very similar to crab cakes, so I'm thinking of adding a little chopped up crab next time. 

Go try it! And let me know what you think! 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentines Day!

Ok blogger is being all wonky and won't load my pictures correctly, so there just gonna have stay a little all-over-the-place today. I'll try and not let it bother me too much.

My Valentines Day is going very lovely so far. Hubby ended up staying home "sick" from work so its been nice to have him home to spend the day with! Not to mention having him home means that I get to run today. Usually Tuesdays are my non-run days or my run-and-die-pushing-a-40 lb-kid-in-a-20-lb-stroller day. So, its a double plus- have my Valentine at home AND I get my run in. Score!

Since yesterday was a school holiday, the boys and I (ok, lets just admit it, it was all me) made special Valentines Day treats for their class today. I can't claim this as my idea as I got it from a friend at church (can you believe its not Pinterest? I'm gonna link this post to pinterest when I'm done though, because it definitely deserves some re-pins!)

It's simple, fun and the best part? Sugar Free and about 5 calories a piece!

I'm not sure the technical name, but we'll just call them "Jello filled orange slices". Creative, I know. 

You'll need:
6-8 lbs small-medium oranges (24 oranges total)
Jello (you'll need 2 small boxes to fill them all, but I used 5 boxes cause I wanted all different colors)

And thats it! Told ya it was simple. 

1st step: cut oranges in half and scoop the orange out. Be careful not to puncture the orange as your scooping. Won't work with holes :) the smoother you can get the peel/rind/whatever you call it, the better. Place the empty orange peel halves in a cupcake/muffin pan (2 pans)
(I saved all the oranges and made fresh squeezed OJ for later. Well, what was left after the boys got a hold of the bowl)

Next step: Prepare jello according to package and pour into individual bowls. If you use all one color Jello, you are doing yourself a favor and making life much easier. Thats not how I roll...unfortunately. I like to make things difficult for myself apparently. So basically I just did one color at a time and poured the jello in a measuring cup with a spout, and then poured from there into the orange halves. 
 
Ok again, blogger is being dumb and I can't post above that last pic. So after you've poured the jello into the oranges, place the whole muffin pan in the refrigerator. You might wanna make sure not to undertake this project after you've just gone to Costco & the grocery store and you're fridge is jam packed. Not that I did that. Just sayin.

Mine took about 12 hours to set all the way. Once they are set and firm (not jiggly), take an extra sharp knife (NOT serrated) and slice down the middle, making 2 out of each orange half. 

I promise your kids will gobble these up. I made so many that they didn't fit on the 2 Valentines plates I had so my lucky kids got to have jello slices with their toast & eggs for breakfast. I know, I'm a cool mom :) At least they thought I was!

____________________________________________________

So now I need to plan a last minute, fun Valentines dinner for the kids, cause I had a change of heart for what I was making for dinner tonight (I'll update my "Whats for dinner" post cause basically my entire menu for the week changed after finding some yummy stuff while grocery shopping this weekend). I'm gonna attempt a quiet, candle lit dinner for Wayman & I and the boys are having a Valentines Day picnic in the playroom with a movie! We're having asparagus & cheddar stuffed chicken breasts, some kind of quinoa- haven't decided yet & honey glazed carrots. And then we're all having gluten-free, organic double chocolate cookies for dessert. 

Feel free to leave any suggestions for fun Valentines Day dinners! Until then, I'll be hittin up Pinterest...which never lets me down :)

Hope your day is filled with love and laughter!!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Running For Sherry

Yesterday I participated in my first virtual race. The race was held in honor of Sherry Arnold, a runner from Montana who was kidnapped and presumably murdered last month. 
Sherry was a mother, a wife, a teacher, a friend & a runner...just like me. 

She set out one morning, just like any other, expecting a peaceful & enjoyable run. Instead, the unthinkable happened. The thing that all runners keep in the back of their mind, but never expect to happen to them. She was abducted just 10 minutes from her home at 6:40am. Two men have been arrested in connection with the case, but no body has been located...only one of running shoes on the side of the road. Thats all thats left of Sherry- besides her memory. 

I can't even imagine how her friends and family are dealing with this and I hope and pray it never happens to myself or someone I know. I am always careful and observant when I'm out running- I run familiar paths, my husband knows my route, I (usually) don't run in the dark, and when I do- I stay on the main streets instead of the trails or dark, quiet neighborhoods. I keep my phone with me, I wear reflective clothing when needed, I don't listen to music so that I can be more aware of my surroundings and a couple days of the week I run with someone else. 

I'm sure Sherry did all of those things too- but unfortunately the unimaginable happened and now she is gone. A husband has to go to bed without his wife, 2 children have to wake up each morning without their mom & many friends and family have to deal with the loss of their beloved friend and family member. It just sends shivers up my spine.

So yesterdays run, put together my her cousin in Colorado, was held all around the country at 9:00 am. She was doing a fundraiser to raise money for Sherry's children and asked runners to donate what they could, and to run, bike, walk, skate...whatever...at 9:00 am in honor of Sherry. 

Rebecca and I headed to Woodward park, our normal 5k race spot and ran the same 5k race route we do in "official" races. I was hoping to PR but between the blisters on my feet and my legs feeling like bricks, I missed by about 1:30. Last week I really stepped up my workouts and by the time Saturday came around, my legs were DONE! I didn't let that stop me, I went out and ran and gave it all I had.

Here are Rebecca & I after we finished our run (and I'm SO proud of her- this was her first time running the entire 3.1 miles without stopping to walk! She is doing so good!) Its a cell phone pic and really bad quality
 And before the race, we took a few picture together also

It gave us both a lot of time to think about Sherry & her family and pray for their peace during this awful time. Last I checked, more than 20,000 people had signed up to run for Sherry yesterday- all around the country. Isn't that amazing! 20,000 runners joined together, in honor of someone they didn't even know, to race for her memory. I'm sure that Sherry would have done the same for someone else and we were honored to run for her! 

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Whats for dinner?

Monday-Brown rice California Rolls, Miso & Veggie soup & Fruit
Tuesday- Asparagus & Cheddar stuffed chicken breast
Wednesday- No cooking! Church night :) 
Thursday- Chicken meatball subs, salad & pears
Friday-English Muffin Pizzas & Salad
Saturday- garlic & herb encrusted pork tenderloin, hasselback potatoes & roasted asparagus
Sunday- out of town! 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Bento boxes

I mentioned a few days ago that I was in search of a Bento Box type lunch container for my kids. Basically- its a tupperware/lunchbox thats divided up into individual sections. Its very popular in the Japanese culture evidently. Anyway- I loved the idea and found one I really, really wanted to get for them...until I saw the price! Noooo thank you! Especially since I would need 2 of them. 

So as I was checking out at Old Navy (of all places) yesterday, I saw these sitting on the shelf in the checkout line. I forgot to take a picture of them with the lid on, but I'm sure you get the idea :)  They are absolutely perfect and exactly what I was looking for. I just got them packed and ready to go to send to school with the boys tomorrow
(baby carrots, cheese cubes, prunes & kiwi on top, tzatziki (greek yogurt dip) in the middle and a peanut butter & jelly sandwich underneath) I'll make the sandwiches and put them in tomorrow before schools so they don't get soggy overnight.
I also gave Austin an applesauce in his, and might put a few crackers in a ziploc on the side. He eats a lot more than Carson does. 

And the best thing about these? They were $5 :)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

2012 Race Schedule

January:
-Break the Barriers Dream Run 5k, Fresno 36:29 (11:46 Pace)

February:
-Virtual Run for Sherry 5k 36:54 (11:48 pace)
-Race Judicata 5k, Clovis PR!!! 33:27 (10:48 pace)

March:
-Blossom Trail 10k, Sanger  PR!! 1:09 (11:00 pace)
-Brian Sturgeon St. Patricks Day 5k, Fresno

April:
-Run for the Reef 5k, Fresno

May:
-Mothers Day 5 mile run, Madera
-California Classic Half Marathon, Fresno

June:
-Cross the River 10k, Fresno
-Fathers Day 5k, Downtown Fresno

July:
-North Fresno Rotary 5k, Fresno

August:
{no scheduled races planned as of now}

September:
{no scheduled races planned as of now}

October:
-Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5k, Fresno


November:
-Two Cities Half Marathon, Fresno/Clovis
-Turkey Trot 5k, Fresno

December:
-Santa Monica/Venice Christmas Run, Santa Monica/Venice

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Stuck.

I'm not stuck. But my scale is. Or wait..does that mean I am to?

Its so frustrating to see the scale stay between the same 2 numbers week after week.

I know that all weight loss stories have a "plateau" chapter somewhere amongst the pages. I'm ok with that. I even expected it. What I didn't expect was that it would last this long.

I know eventually I'll be in the next chapter and the pounds will start dropping again. That can't happen soon enough!

I have to keep reminding myself of this, otherwise I get very discouraged.

I know that my metabolism just needs a good shock, and I'm hoping that adding the daily elliptical & strength workouts will be just the ticket.

Even though I'm at the same weight as I was 2-3 months ago, I feel different and my clothes fit differently. I know my body is changing, however not seeing the scale reflect those changes is a major bummer.

Am I obsessed with the scale? Hmmm...

I'd like to think that I'm not, but I definitely know that often times, the number I see when I step on determines my mindset for the rest of the day. I want that to change. I don't think thats healthy or productive.

I'm really not having a pity party for myself. I'm not giving up. I'm not any less motivated than before. I just hate feeling...stuck.

Anyone else ever feel that way? Meet one goal and then have it near impossible to meet the next? Take two steps forward, one step back? I know I'm not alone!

Lets work together and get UN-STUCK!!!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Monday ramblings

Today has been a really good day! Beautiful weather and I got a lot of things accomplished.

First off- heres a picture of the broccoli we harvested from our garden this weekend. I steamed some the other night with our turkey meatloaf we had for dinner and I'm using the rest tonight in broccoli cheese soup. Why are vegetables so much better when you grow them yourself?
In an effort to meet my 85 mile goal this February, I decided I'm gonna need to throw in quite a few extra dog-walks to make it :) When I set that goal for myself, I forgot to take into consideration that February is a short month, so its gonna take some extra work! Nothing that can't be done though :) 

Since today was such a nice day, I took the dogs with me to walk and get Austin from school (about a mile away). They had fun getting out and getting a little freedom :)
And this morning I did my first long-ish run that I've done in awhile. I've been doing between 2-4 miles lately but after all the Superbowl snacks yesterday, I knew I needed to work extra hard today. I really hate gaining back pounds that I've already lost! I set out to run 5, but was feeling really good and decided to keep going. I did a 5-10 min warm up and cool down and ran the rest of the time. I averaged between 12:30-13:30 the whole time (told ya I'm no speed demon!) 
Wayman and I are planning on doing a circuit workout each night after the kids go to bed (using the elliptical, dumb bells & resistance tube) so I'll be able to add that my workout log tonight too! 

Ok, back to putting laundry away & doing homework with the boys!

Hope everyone had a good day! 

Oh, and if you haven't already checked it out, Jessica featured me on her blog today for "Motivate Me Monday" Check it out! 

Motivate Me Monday

Hey everyone! Jessica over at Running to be Skinny featured me today on her blog in her weekly "Motivate Me Monday" segment! She is an awesome blogger- full of good advice & encouragement and what I love most- a family girl just like myself. 

Hop on over to her blog to read my story and her other posts as well! 

Thanks Jessica!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

What's for Dinner?

I'm gonna change my "Menu Monday" to "What's for Dinner?" and start posting it over the weekend instead. That way I have time (or whoever else is making what I am) to grocery shop over the weekend. Thanks for idea Rebecca :)

I only have to cook 3 nights this week so it was a pretty easy menu to make! I don't even think I need anything from the store. I'm trying to clean out our freezer in the garage because it needs to be de-frosted really bad. That means we'll probably be eating a few freezer meals each week for awhile!

Monday- Broccoli Cheese soup & grilled cheese*
Tuesday- Salsa chicken in the crockpot
Wednesday- not cooking! Church night :) Salads or sandwiches on-the-go
Thursday- Italian sausage & peppers over whole wheat noodles OR baked fish sticks & tater tots (boys have been asking for this for awhile)
Friday- Going out for dinner for Wayman's dads birthday
Saturday- Eating at Mom & Dad's
Sunday- Going to my grandmas for dinner

*I use I Can't Believe its Not Butter! spray for my grilled cheese. Browns up perfectly and saves about 150 calories! Doesn't have the same buttery, greasy texture but its still very good :)

Re-cap of last weeks menu:
-Avacado Chicken Parmesan wasn't my favorite. Maybe I just don't like warm avacado? I don't know...and I cooked it according to the recipe and it seemed way undercooked, so I cooked it a little longer. Just wasn't a huge fan (Wayman liked it).
-Vegetarian Quinoa Chili was amazing! We definitely aren't vegetarians and aren't trying to be...but this was very hearty and delicious. With that being said- we decided that next time I make it, it needs to have some ground turkey added :) I added a few more veggies than the recipe called for and it made enough for 2 full meals (plus Wayman took leftovers for him a friend the next day). I froze the extra portion to have for a quick dinner when needed.
-The roasted pork loin was also very good, but needs a few changes to the recipe. I used a 2.5 lb pork loin (recipe called for 2-3 lb) and it said to cook on low (in crockpot) for 6-8 hours. I cooked it exactly 6 hours and it was over-cooked. Not horribly, but enough to make it kinda dry and need extra sauce. I'm gonna try 4.5/5 hours next time. The boys really loved this one!

My new toy!

We have been looking and saving and researching the best elliptical and this week we made our decision. And where did we find it? Costco of course! 

(I couldn't save the image from the website for some reason, so heres a picture from my phone)
So far Wayman & I both love it and I can tell its going to get a lot of use! Its a nice alternative to running, although it will never take the place of running. That will always be my #1 :)

Some of my favorite features:
-I can plug my iPhone into it and listen to Pandora on my music on my phone
-It has a built in (powerful!) fan to cool you off if you need to
-It has 30 workouts to choose from
-Built in heart rate monitor
-iFit compatible...if you have never heard of iFit before- click on the link and check it out! Its basically an "app" that connects to google maps and allows you draw a route literally ANYWHERE in the world and run (or whatever you do on the elliptical haha). You can choose to run through Central Park in New York and see all the sights around there- or Paris, Hawaii, any favorite vacation spot...or even your own neighborhood! Makes the time go by a lot quicker :)
-The screen on the control panel is very clear (a little mini TV screen)
-has a place to keep my water bottle (I'm easily amused)
-folds up for easy storage (although its still pretty big)
-QUIET! You can hardly hear it at all, even when you are going full speed
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Friday, February 3, 2012

January RUNdown & February Goals

Pounds lost: 8.6
Distance ran: 74.06 miles
Worked out 30/31 days

February Goals:
Lose 9 pounds
Run 85 miles


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Healthy Snack & Lunch Ideas for Kids

I'm definitely not an expert when it comes to nutrition, but I do feel educated and informed enough to know that packing a bologna sandwich, cheetos, twinkies & squeeze-it doesn't constitute as a healthy lunch. Kids need lots of good, nutritious food to fill their bellies and help them grow and develop. Their brains and bodies are growing at a rapid rate and I feel like its so important to make sure you do your part to ensure that they are properly fed to ensure adequate nutrition.  If you want them to perform their best at school, you need to fuel them with the right kinds of food! With childhood obesity so prevalent, its also important you watch and monitor exactly what goes into your childs mouth.  I know its easy to throw them a bag of fruit snacks or a handful of cookies- trust me, I'm guilty of that too. But its my goal that 95% of the food my kids eat is clean, unprocessed and "real". 

I've seen a lot of "Bento Box" lunches floating around Pinterest and I have to say I love, love, love the idea. My Type A brain loves organization and compartmentalizing and so this is perfect :) I might just have to research them a little more and order a couple :) I found this one at Pottery Barn that looks perfect. If you haven't seen them, its basically a lunch box (or tupperware) that is separated into different sections. You put the main course in the biggest (sandwich) and the "side dishes" (fruits, veggies, yogurt, etc) in the smaller sections. I have seen SO many creative ideas that I want to try!

But for now, here is a list of my go-to lunches that I pack for the boys. Almost everyday, their lunch boxes come home empty. And luckily, they are still too young to learn the "trade with a friend" or "throw away so mom won't know" trick! :) I'm sure that will come soon enough!

Main Dishes:
-Whole grain uncrustables or PB&J on whole wheat bread. 
-Turkey & cheese sandwich on whole wheat 
-whole wheat tortilla, spread with fat free cream cheese, with layers of cucumbers and chopped up chicken (usually leftover from dinner)
-String cheese wrapped in lunch meat
-Refried black bean burrito in a whole wheat tortilla
-a mixture of romaine & spinach with 2 or 3 chicken nuggets cut up, along with a chopped hardboiled egg, dressing on the side so it doesn't get soggy
-homemade bagel bites (use mini whole wheat bagels, spoon of sauce, and melt cheese on top. i wrap them in foil and they usually stay ok/not soggy)


Sides:
-Baby carrots mixed with grape tomatoes
-Any kind of berry mixture (their favorite is blueberries & strawberries or blackberries & kiwi)
-Grapes, Mandarin oranges "cuties", apple slices, bananas, 
-Yogurt (sometimes I drizzle honey or add granola or chopped nuts)
-Sting cheese
-Granola bars (watch the sugar!)
-celery spread with peanut butter and raisins
-whole wheat crackers with Tzatziki to dip them in(its a greek yogurt cucumber sauce, we buy ours at Costco and it is heavenly!)
-applesauce
-trail mix (they like a mix of cashews, raisins, cheerios and m&m's)
-air popped popcorn or pirates booty
-organic fruit leathers

Now- these are just what WE pack for our kids. Not what you have to do. I was just giving ideas for those who feel like they are in a rut :) I try and change it up at least a little everyday so they don't get bored. They definitely have their favorites so I usually do those things most often. Oh, and I don't pack them 2 separate lunches...they both get the same thing. I also pack my husband's lunch, but he gets an alternate "big kid" menu haha. The little boys are always anxious to look in their lunchbox on the way to school each morning to see they can look forward too :) Its really actually kind of fun for me to pack their lunches.

Ok, now that I've given my 10 cents, here are a few websites that I've found and really like. Lots of good, creative ideas!






Happy packing!