Monday, October 06, 2008

New Toy!

Being efficient is extremely important to me, and I'm always trying to figure out ways to get things done faster and better. So, enter commuting to work and exercising. A perfect combo, right? Except that I kind of hate my bike (yes, all it needs is a little TLC and a tune up, but it's u.g.l.y. and I'm all about the cute....) and its waaaaaay to far to walk. So, basically I had no choice but to get a fabulous new bike to ride to work and possibly even pick up the little from daycare occasionally. I had to special order my new cruiser-style bike and somewhere in between ordering to "see it" and it arriving in the store, I ended up NEEDing this bike. It is so gorgeous, and so fun to ride. I love love love it. (But not as much as my family! hehe)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Push up challenge and update

Long time, no blog :(

But, I am still working out and headed towards my goals. I did a test
today for the push up challenge, and managed 60! Definite progress
from the 35 I started with, but still a ways to go. I am hopeful that
I'll be able to do week 6 once and then the hundred right away, but
the way this test went, it's probably going to take a few rounds of
week 6. Bah!

Oh, and according to my suprailliac measurement today, bf% is at
18.6%, which translates to 98lbs LBM and 22.5lbs fat. Woo!

Just to track my progress so far, here are my Sept 1 stats next to
Weight: 122.5 .......121.0 (-1.5)
BF%: 20.9 ....... 18.6 (-2.3%)
Lbs of fat: 25.6 ....... 22.5 (-3.1)
Lean body mass: 96.9 ....... 98.4 (+1.5)

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Protein Bar Secret Ingredient

I've tried tons of homemade protein bar recipes, and usually they're kinda dry and weird tasting and definitely not as delicious as a brownie, which is what I'd really prefer to eat. But I recently found a new, magical ingredient that makes protein bars taste more like real, live cookies/brownies/bars, etc, and less like crumbly, weird protein smash: gemma protein! It's new (I think), and is extracted from peas. DO NOT make the mistake of using this for a shake - it is chalky, powdery, and nasty! BUT, because it is so much more like flour than whey protein, it works extremely well in protein bar recipes and gives it that magical, flour-based consistency. I got mine from, where it is super cheap (one of the most affordable forms of protein powder out there). I have found that you need to add more water - about tablespoon per scoop of protein to make the recipes suitable moist. Just fair warning. If you try it, let me know what you think!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

100 Push Up Challenge Update

Today was week 3, day 3:

I can tell I'm stronger, for sure. I still can't believe I can get so many out on the 5th set, becauase every time I get to the 4th set, I can barely complete them. Maybe it's in my head. Give me a minumum to do, and I will beat it just to prove I can. :)

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Pull Up Challenge

Since I started the 100 push ups challenge and am seeing so many people doing it along with me, I started thinking: hey, wouldn't a pull up challenge be fun, too? One of my goals for my current JP Fitness women's challenge is to be able to do 5 pull ups, but now I'm thinking I could probably do better if I worked really hard on it. So I poked around on the internet and found this program, which looks promising, and simple. The goal is to earn the maximum score on the Marine Core test, which is to do 20 pull ups from a dead hang.

Recon Ron's Pull Up Program
Do an initial test of your max pull ups to determine which step to start on. Once you have your step, repeat that step 3 days per week for two weeks, then move on to the next step. You'll do 5 sets of the listed number of reps, and rest as needed between sets. Try to complete all of the sets in a resonable time frame, around 10 minutes or less. Yep, that's it. So simple.

Step 1:1,1,1,1,1 Step 16:9,7,6,5,5
Step 2:2,2,1,1,1 Step 17:10,7,6,6,5
Step 3:3,2,2,1,1 Step 18:10,8,6,6,6
Step 4:3,2,2,2,1 Step 19:10,8,7,6,6
Step 5:4,2,2,2,2 Step 20:11,8,7,7,6
Step 6:4,3,2,2,2 Step 21:12,9,7,7,7
Step 7:4,4,2,2,2 Step 22:13,9,8,7,7
Step 8:5,4,3,2,2 Step 23:14,9,8,8,7
Step 9:5,4,3,3,3 Step 24:14,10,8,8,8
Step 10:6,4,4,3,3 Step 25:15,10,9,8,8
Step 11:6,5,4,4,3 Step 26:16,10,9,9,8
Step 12:7,5,4,4,4 Step 27:16,11,9,9,9
Step 13:7,6,5,4,4 Step 28:17,11,10,9,9
Step 14:8,6,5,5,4 Step 29:18,11,10,10,9
Step 15:8,7,5,5,5 Step 30:18,12,10,10,10

I'm not sure that 20 pull ups are in my future, but I think I'll give the program a whirl and see how it goes. Anyone want to join me?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

World's easiest omelet

This takes less than 5 minutes to cook and comes out perfectly every

Spray a small frying pan with non-stick spray and turn on the heat to
medium low. Add 1-2c of veggies of your choice (I always use spinach
and sometimes throw in other stuff too), 1/2c egg substitute, and top
off with some sliced cheese. Now cover the whole thing, set a timer
for 4 min, and come back when it beeps. Fold it in half and slide it
onto your plate. Mmmmm.

Favorite Healthy Cookbooks

I was looking in my cookbook cupboard yesterday, and I saw a whole section dedicated to "healthy" books. I thought I'd share my favorites here.

Eating for Life: This was my first healthy cookbook, and is still one of my favs. I love that each recipe isn't just a recipe, it's a whole meal. Bill has already planned out your veggies and carbs along with the main dish. It makes planning dinner really easy. Plus, every single one of the dinners in the book are delicious. Seriously, every one.

The South Beach Diet Cookbook: This is a newer one of mine, but has some really yummy recipes, too. I like that it has lots of photos of the food (but not every dish is pictured, boo). There are lots of yummy side dishes in here.

The Eat Clean Diet Cookbook: I love all the photos in this book, and the simplicity of most of the recipes. Tosca is so fun, too. Her personality really comes across in this, which is funny, since it's a cookbook. :)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

100 pushups!

I decided to jump on the bandwagon and add in the 100 push up challenge into my training program. I did the initial test, and surprised myself with 35 consecutive, on-my-toes push ups. But that started my conundrum: should I start on week one of the challenge, which starts out with sets of only 10-15 push ups, or should I skip ahead and challenge myself a little more??

Well, I was debating where to start with my husband, I thought I should start on week 3, column 3, and he said that would be too hard. So, out came my competitive streak, and I said, "Ok, I'll do it right now." So he timed my rests and I did it! Woo woo woo! 25, 17, 17, 15, 26. But I'm not going to lie, I wasn't sure I'd be able to make it through the last set. It was really freakin' hard! But I did! And coincidentally, that turns out to be exactly 100 (non-consecutive) push ups that I did tonight. So, week 3 it is for me. :)

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Green Smoothie

I was surprised at how delicious this smoothie I made up was, so I had to write the recipe down. It's actually purple when you make it, but it has spinach in it

1/2c water or green tea (I used water + packet of green tea to go mix)
1 scoop strawberry protein powder
1/2c cottage cheese
1/2c frozen blueberries
1c baby spinach leaves (next time, I'll probably use more, you can't taste ANY spinachy flavor at all in this!)
1t flax meal
4-5 ice cubes

Blend it. mmmmmm.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Iced Coffee Recipe

My hubby got me hooked on McDonald's Iced Coffees, which are delicious! ....well, usually delicious, but totally depends on who makes it because I don't think I've ever had two that tasted the same. So, that's annoying. Plus also, if you're trying not to eat lots of crap, then a creamer- and sugar- laden mystery beverage isn't going to work out. So, I decided to make my own. I've tried a few different combinations recently, but tonight I finally hit upon the perfect recipe. Seriously, it's so delicious I never need to get a McDonald's one again.

Put 1/4c fat free half and half in the bottom of your glass, then add 1 rounded teaspoon of instant coffee and 2 rounded teaspoons of splenda. Mix it up. Fill the glass up to about 3/4 with ice, and add water to fill it up. Swirl and drink up. Yummy yummy yummy!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Gourmet Nutrition!

I've been waiting very impatiently for my copy of
Gourmet Nutrition
to arrive in the mail (why is the mail so sloooooooow when you really really really want something??) and today it finally arrived! Even though I'd seen the sample recipes, and knew that every recipe had its own photo, I was still really excited by just how nice it looks. Of course I immediately sat down and read through the whole thing, and picked out some yummy recipes to try. I already made a chocolate mint shake (verdict: yummy, but not something I really needed a recipe for) and the banana nut bars (verdict: yummy, and worth the recipe. I like that they don't have that rubbery egg white texture so many protein recipes have). So obviously, I need to make many more recipes to tell how good it really is, but I can say that I am not sad I spent $30 on it (used), but I agree with those people that say $50 (w/ shipping) is too much for a paperback cookbook. It reminds me of Eating for Life, in that it has full meals, but is more like a real cookbook in that you actually cook everything. No instant pudding mix or salad dressings here, it's all real food recipes. Eating for Life is more aimed at guys who need to cook and have no experience, Gourmet Nutrition is aimed at a more traditional cookbook audience. Not to imply that one is better than the other, they just have a different tone.
This book is a nice complement to healthy eating books like the Eat Clean Diet Cookbook, Eating for Life, and The South Beach Diet Cookbook, all of which are keeping it company on my cookbook shelf. More recipe reviews are coming soon!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Today's workout:

SloMo Warm up +Chest (3 sets of 8 reps for each, 4-0-4 or 2-2-4 cadence for most)
Around the Worlds DB - 2x6
Decline Bench Press BB - 45
Incline Chest Flyes with Internal Rotation DB - 2x9
Staggered Hand Push-Ups - toes

Power Hour Abs - crunches, reverse crunches, planks

Cardio Kicks: first 35 min

I'm sad I had to use one of my 4 10% days today on lunch. I had plans to see a family friend, and I thought we would go out to lunch and i could order a nice grilled chicken salad, but instead, she offered to cook for us - grilled cheese! :O at least it was PWO! But it was with yummy yummy bread and Tillamook cheddar, so it ended up being worth it. Everything else was on track. I made my chocolate peanut butter protein shake into ice cream with my KitchenAid Ice cream attactment, and it was awesome. Protein ice cream is somehow waaaaaay more exciting than protein shake. Especially when it's so hot hot hot. I'll definitely be making more of these.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Plan details

Here is my workout schedule for this month. I just got Amy Bento's SloMo 3-day split of heavy weights, and I wanted to use it, but I've also just discovered how great the rotations that Cathe designs are, so I wanted both! I took a rotation that Cathe designed using her Slow and Heavy Series, and replaced those workouts with Amy's SloMo, but kept all the cardio and ab work Cathe. And thus, my Amy/Cathe hybrid rotation. I started this last week, so today was actually the first rest day. Tomorrow I do chest, abs, and kickboxing. Woo.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Bento lunch!

I recently learned that there are a bunch of rare and exciting
Japanese dollar stores in the LA area, and, of course, I should take
advantage of them while I live here. Well, one thing they are well-
known for is their fun/cute bento supplies. So, naturally, I had to
stock up, because you never know when Kylen will need me to pack her a
tiny lunch with lots of cute accessories. At least that's the cover

So here is my first official bento lunch with my new supplies. It's
packed in my Leaflet Tight (It is so wonderful to be able to maintain
your dreams.) box.

Friday, March 14, 2008

I squatted my bodyweight!

Ok, actually, more than my bodyweight: last night's workout was 3 sets of 8 reps at 130lbs. Woo!

Sunday, March 02, 2008

This week's eats

Since today is a day off from lifting, I thought I'd take some time to plan the week's menus to keep me on track.

I don't mind eating the same things over and over again, but my DH does, so I'll be having lots of repeats for breakfast, but varying my dinners.

I'm sticking with an approximate 40/30/30 ratio target, with a goal of 150g of protein, 200g of carbs, and 70g of fat per day.

I'll be pre-packaging my breakfasts and snacks to make them easier to grab in the morning and keep me on plan.

breakfast: 1 scoop chocolate protein powder, 1T almond meal, 1/3 c dry rolled oats, 1/2c milk

snack: 1c 2% greek yogurt with 1c frozen berries, 2t honey, 1T flaxseed

lunch: usually leftovers from dinner the night before or a chicken

snack: protein pumpkin bread (yummy!)

grilled mahi mahi w/ frozen veggies and sweet potato fries
EFL-style meatloaf w/frozen veggies and baked potato
pulled pork BBQ on ww roll, sweet/sour cole slaw
beef teriyaki w/ brown rice and edamame
marinated chicken breast w/ rice and frozen veggies

snack: 2% greek yogurt w/ honey, flaxseed, peanutbutter

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

You MUST try this now!

Greek yogurt. It's pretty much the most delicious thing ever. Especially the full fat kind with honey. And it has like 15g of protein per cup. Basically, it's like halfway between yogurt and cottage cheese. But so much yummier than non-fat, I mean...cottage cheese.

Next, I'm going to try my hand at making it myself. The only difference between greek style yogurt and traditional yogurt is straining. The greek stuff has extra whey removed, which makes it so creamy and delicious, and explains how so much protein gets in there.

Monday, February 25, 2008

I found this recipe a while ago, and loved it. I have since found the wonderful site where I found it is down, so I wanted to copy it and preserve it for all enternity.

Caro’s BBQ Ranch Chopped Chicken salad:

For those of you who’ve been to a California Pizza Kitchen restaurant, I was OBSESSED with the CPK Original BBQ Chopped Chicken Salad–the version below is huge, filling and NOT a calorie bomb!

268 cals, 26g carb 28g prot, 7g fat (2g sat), 6g fiber

2 TBSP Just 2 good ranch
2 TBSP Kraft Low Carb BBQ Sauce

1/6 head iceberg lettuce, chopped into ½ - ¾ inch pieces
1-2 cups spinach, chopped into ½ - ¾ inch pieces
1 green onion, chopped
2 TBSP yellow corn (canned or frozen, thawed)
2 TBSP black beans (canned, drained)
1 TBSP parmesan cheese - you can sub shredded fat free chedder if you prefer!
3 oz chicken breast, cubed/chopped into ½ inch pieces
1 roma tomato, chopped

Toss all the ingredients with the dressing and serve.


I've been following the New Rules of Lifting for Women workout for the past month or so. I'm still in the first phase, which seems really wimpy compared to a Cathe or P90x workout. The workouts are finished in under 30 minutes, including a warmup. The difference is that I'm trying to lift as heavy as I possibly can. WAAAAAAAAAY heavier that I've ever done before, even when I *thought* I was going heavy in P90x, it was nothing compared to this. I'm just starting out, so these numbers are still "low" compared to how they will be, but still, squatting 95lbs or deadlifting 80lbs is significantly higher than the ~40lbs I'd ever done before.

So, despite lifting much heavier, I still thought that I'd not see a lot of progress during this first 6 weeks because the program starts with a break in phase for people who have not been working out at all. (Ordinarily, I would decide I was too good for any such break-in phase, but after taking off a year+ to have a baby, I thought I should be nice to by body...) Anyway, even this "easy" break in workout is making progress. About 2 months ago, I tried to do some chin ups (easier than pull ups!) and was sad to find that I couldn't even do one without cheating. Well, today I tried again, and I was able to whiip out 3 no problem. If it wasn't a workout day, I would have tried for more, but I didn't want to burn myself out before my workout. So, woo-hoo, yay me. And I'm sorry NROLFW that I doubted you.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Spicy Chicken Soup

So I was thinking something along the lines of a tortilla soup for this, but it came out somewhat less tortilla-soup-y than I had imagined. Still really really yummy, though. And the whole thing took like 5 minutes to make.

Saute until translucent:
1 T olive oil
1 clove garlic
1/2 onion, chopped

Add and cook for one more minute:
1T cumin (more or less to taste)
2t red pepper flakes (more or less - I added a bunch, maybe as much as a tablespoon)

Mix in and simmer for ~15min:
8oz frozen corn
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 can diced tomatoes
2-3 cups chicken broth

After simmering, remove the chicken breasts, dice, and return to the soup. Yummy!

Test post from iPhone

Because it's cool!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Peanut Butter Cookies

1/2c peanut butter
1/2c splenda
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
1/4c rolled oats
1/2t baking powder
1/4 cup egg substitute

Process everything in a food processor until smooth and blended. Roll into balls and bake at 350 for about 10 min. Makes 6 good-sized cookies.

Per cookie: 162 cal, 11.5g fat, 7g carbs, 10g protein


Yes, it has been well over a year since I last posted....but I have a good excuse: Kylen. Probably the best reason I have ever had to quit working out. But I'm back. I've started a new program, The New Rules of Lifting for Women, which has been all over all the fitness forums and the blogs I read. And of course, as a bandwagon jumper-on-er, I had to get it and try it. I'm really excited to be working out again, this program is perfect for new parents because it emphasizes heave weights and low reps and high intensity interval training for cardio, both of which take less time than traditional workouts. Perfect since I have to do it after Kylen goes to bed and I also need to eat, clean up, pack my and Kylen's things for the next day, give my cat his medicine and often tutor between 7:00 and bed. Definitely no time for the hour+ workouts I used to do. :(

Anyway, I'll be posting regularly to keep track of my workouts and how it's going. Promise.