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Super Sweaty Elliptical Workout

3 Oct

When I work from home, Ed always tries to find things to keep himself busy.  Our place is so small that he can become very distracting once he is awake.  We talk, the TV is on, he is making something in the kitchen.  Every noise distracts me from my work.  So, he decided to sleep in and once he got up, went for a run at the park before work.

I get a call about an hour later.  Ed had dropped the car key somewhere on the path and he took my car.  I had no way to get to him since I don’t feel comfortable enough to drive his stick shift car by myself.  So, like a good wife, I told him to start walking 🙂  I know, I’m terrible, but the park wasn’t that far away and in my work mode mind, I just couldn’t think of anything else at that moment.  He eventually called his work and someone came to pick him up and drop him back off at the house.

Good news, Ed was happy to announce that he got 7 miles of running in when he had to add the extra running time for re-jogging the path to try and locate the key.  Way to go, Ed!

Moral of the story, if you want to increase your distance for the day, loose your keys!

🙂

Due to all the drama, I skipped lunch and was craving for 4:30PM to get to the gym for some cardio.

I have NEVER sweat so much doing an elliptical work out.  I opted for this machine since it was 85 degrees of humidity outside and I was in the need for a good interval sweat.  Either way, it was a great workout for below the belt, backside area.

After that sweat I came home, changed out of my sopping shirt (seriously, gross) and stretched.  I am really intrigued to find a yoga class in the area.  I have taken a total of one yoga class in my life and I think it would be great for running.  I’m also really intrigued by hot yoga.  What can I say, I love a good sweat 😉

Dinner

Dinner was quick since I was on my own tonight.

Garlic Butter Muscles, Brown Rice and Fresh Steamed Broccoli.

Simple and filling.  I was snacking all day long which called for a healthier dinner.  No snacking for this girl tonight.  I gave up my snacks to all the cheese sticks I consumed throughout the day.

My weakness.

Have you ever locked yourself out of your car?  

What are you snacking weaknesses?  How do you curb your appetite?

Cheese.  I love cheese.  My newest find is Munster cheese.  It tastes great melted over half an English muffin or waffles.  Yum!

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Banana-Ricotta Pancakes

30 Sep

Good morning!

This morning I’m feeling much better and just in time for another busier Sunday.

I woke up and did one round of The Ab Mix Up Workout before cracking into leftovers from yesterday’s breakfast.

These were just as tasty as yesterday and with good reason.

As I was getting ready to post this recipe I found from All You Magazine, I noticed a very important detail I hadn’t noticed before making these sweet breakfast treats.

See that “D” word?  Yep, I made dessert for breakfast.  Oh well.  Talk it up to the 99 degrees of heat coming from my head yesterday.  🙂  It’s probably still better then a fried donut.  Plus, I was really excited to use the ricotta cheese in my fridge.

Banana-Ricotta Pancakes
Original Source: All You Magazine

Prep: 5 min.
Cook: 4 min. per batch
Serves: 4
Cost per Serving: $.80

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup whole-milk ricotta
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 small ripe banana, mashed
  • Caramel sauce, optional (I used syrup)
  • Sliced banana, optional

First, in a medium bowl, whisk all dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, salt).

In a larger bowl, whisk together remaining wet ingredients (ricotta, egg, milk, butter, vanilla, banana).  Gently add the flour mixture to the wet mixture until fully blended.

Heat greased skillet over medium heat and drop tablespoons of batter into skillet.  Flip pancakes until golden brown on both sides.  Take about 4 minutes total.

Stack on a plate and serve with your choice of topping (caramel, cinnamon, nutmeg, chopped nuts).  I chose sliced bananas and syrup.

Nutrition Information Per Serving

352 Calories
16 g. Fat (9 grams Sat. Fat)
95 mg. Cholesterol
2 g. Fiber
12 g. Protein
40 g. Carbohydrates
529 mg. Sodium

This was definitely a sweet treat for a Saturday morning breakfast, but tasty and filling all the same.  I love most anything with bananas!

What’s your favorite breakfast dish you like to “splurge” on?

Mine is definitely pancakes or french toast.  I never liked donuts and can usually limit my carb intake at breakfast time.  Eggs and lots of veggies are my favorite and most filling breakfast though.  I can put most anything in my eggs and be happy.  Veggies, milk, cheese, hummus.  They all taste good to me.

Winding Into the Weekend

27 Sep

One of my new fitness goals for the next month is to really pump up the cardio.  While I’ll never give strength training up cold turkey, I’m ready to challenge myself and sweat a little more.  This also means I’ll be inputting a lot more time into my workout routines outside of lunch workouts.  Even with a shower, too much sweat can leave me feeling a little nasty in the afternoon.

Just keeping it real.

Work has been pretty eventful this week, so when I got to the gym I knew I just wanted to zone out for the next 40 minutes.  Luckily for me, I have some pretty funny workout companions too.  So, some laughter broke out on occasion as well.

I did the following interval on the elliptical that included a lot of 2 minute, 4 minute, 6 minute and 8 minutes intervals and time frames.

The intervals helped for a fast 35 minutes and the pay off was pretty good for a midday workout.

Dinner

Ed and I have been on different schedules all week.  So dinner has been pretty simple again tonight.  After last nights 500 degree veggies, I didn’t want to power up the oven and decided on something quick and filling.

I pulled the following two items from the pantry and I made a quick and easy meal for myself.

My aunt gave me this crafty little gadget for making potatoes when I moved to Maryland last year.  You simply just wash your potatoes, wrap them in a paper towel, stick them in the fabric bag and place in the microwave for 6-9 minutes (depending on the size of your potatoes).

Their soft and warm in no time 🙂  As you can see, I’ve given it a lot of use.  See the upper right hand corner.  Yep, that’s a burn mark.

I heated up the turkey chili on the stove top, poured some over the potatoes with a little cheese and sided it up with some fresh green beans with a a spritz of butter.

Probably not going in the healthy meal hall of fame here, but it filled me up!

Oh…and a glass of vino because today is MY Friday!  Plus, it’s been chilling in the fridge for nearly a month now unopened.  It was time.  Since we never drink at home and wine is not my drink of choice, one sip and I’m already sleepy.

Good grief.

What’s your favorite way to wind into the weekend?  Are you ready for some relaxation, to party or a really stiff drink? 😉

I don’t know if I have a specific routine, but it depends if it was my four day week or my five day week.  On my five day weeks, I am so ready to crash in bed early!  Friday night is sadly my earliest night to bed all week long.  If I have plans for that evening, I have to nap or I turn into a pumpkin by 8:00 PM.

The Ab Mix Up and Fall Programs

24 Sep

The gym was absolutely deserted today at lunch, which is always a treat.  It’s never bothered me to work out in front of anyone, but when the ratio around there is maybe 6 men to 1 woman, I will take an empty gym on occasion any day.

I had no thought of a plan until walking into the gym, but knew I wasn’t really up for full cardio or weights.  So, abs it was.

I’m thinking about creating a weekly ab challenge since that seems to be the muscle groups that most people are frustrated with.

Would you participate?

New Fall Programs

I have been anticipating the new fall lineup of shows coming for the past couple weeks now.  While we try to limit our TV watching and don’t have cable, we really enjoy some of the comedy sitcoms that are on and anticipating the new episodes after last season’s cliff hangers.  I hope they don’t disappoint.

What I’m looking forward to:

  • How I Met Your Mother – Although I feel I called the last scene of the last episode in the spring months ago, I have been in serious withdrawal of this show.  The anticipation and guessing of “the mother” has created some serious debate between Ed and me.  Even to the point of getting on Netflix to track down an episode to prove the other wrong.  Oh, I hope my predictions are right!
  • The Big Bang Theory – We always crack up during these episodes and then we crack up at each other.  Ed laughs at me when I don’t understand the “nerd humor” and I laugh at him when he does.  It’s an all around good time. 😉
  • Modern Family – I literally gasped out loud at the finale last spring.  I don’t see this show going anywhere any time soon.  Sometimes if Ed’s not listening to me, I’ll threaten to start yelling like Gloria.  Wouldn’t that be the day?

What I loved, but not anticipating: 

  • Dancing with the Stars – My guilty pleasure show.  My husband will be happy to know I will probably be omitting this one from the nightly show list.  With the show bringing back the “All-Stars”, I’m not as excited to see how people progress like in past seasons. Plus, it’s on so late!  We’ll see.
  • Once Upon A Time – Since our Sunday’s are getting so busy and I wasn’t all that excited with the finale, I think this show might be on my “I’ll watch when I have time” list.  The purple smoke in the last episode was entirely to cheesy for me.  Anyone care to explain if I’m not getting this?

What are you looking forward to watching this fall?

Opposite Day

22 Sep

This morning, Ed and I were definitely on an opposite schedule.  At 6:20 AM, I get a whisper in my ear saying “I’m going out to run.”  I was not even the smallest bit motivated to even try this morning.  I was beat.  So, he left while I slept.  When he returns around 7:45 AM, he showered crawled back into bed and I left to push myself to do, well, something.

I wasn’t in the best mood for a workout this morning, so I started on the treadmill and it turned out to be a pretty good sweat.

When I got home, I did about 10 minutes worth of abs before showering and making breakfast.

Ed opted for the fruit and cereal route while I made two scrambled eggs filled with mushrooms, parsley and garlic powder, half a toasted whole wheat bagel with Munster cheese melted on top and a glass of orange juice.

Ed is currently out running errands, while I opted to stay in this morning and clean the place and bag our Goodwill items to take this afternoon.

I wonder how many more opposite tasks we can manage today?

Do you consider you and your partner pretty “one in the same” or  the typical “opposites attract” love story?

I think Ed and I are usually on the same wave length.  The reason we started hanging out was because we were the only people we knew that loved real sushi.  So, we started visiting local sushi places together which escalated into much more similar interests.  We are definitely opposite in the sleeping routine though.  The man can seriously function on 3 hours of sleep daily.  I can’t.  7-8 hours…minimum.

P.S. I added a Healthy Snacks page to my Recipes page.  Check out last night’s salty treat!

The Lunch Box

19 Sep

Am I the only one that actually imagines their thighs blasting away when I do a lower body workout?

No one?

Forget I mentioned it, but today’s lunch workout was nothing short of a burning blast to the legs.

Let’s just say that my walk had a little swagger when I was done and I’m not even going to comment on going down the stairs.

I started with 5 minutes on the elliptical to get my legs moving.  I used two 5 lb. weights for the lunges and a 10 lb. weight for the plie squats.  I ended with a long inner and outer thigh stretch.

The Lunch Box

For as long as I can remember, I have a packed lunch when eating away from home for work or school.  When I was younger, I would beg my mother to buy lunch like many of the kids around me, but as I got older, things changed.

Eating out every day is expensive ya’ll!  In addition, usually full of unnecessary calories and the closest restaurants around my place of work are at least 10 minutes one way.

While I have got creative over the years, there are some necessary elements to my daily packing lunch routine.

First and foremost…PROTEIN!

I am one hungry girl on a regular basis.  PB&J’s are fantastic, but they won’t hold me through the afternoon.  Six small meals a day is a common practice and since my schedule often has me working out at lunch, I need to refuel, stat!

Most of today’s lunch.

Common Main Courses: Salad with meat (chicken, deli meats, fish, you name it, they have all made it into my salad), Sandwich flat breads/wraps loaded with deli meats and veggies, chicken breasts (cold, warm, BBQed, pulled)  its a perfect start.

Other appearances: Canned soup and baked potatoes.  Warm meals for the winter months are appreciated. Hard boiled eggs are great for post workouts too when I have them.

Next up, another staple, yogurt.  I usually try to stick with fruity Greek yogurt since it’s filling and has major staying power for the afternoon, but I’ll never give up my love for Yoplait (Key Lime is my absolute favorite!)

Fruit and Veggies: Somehow these usually last throughout the afternoon.  I munch on carrots, red peppers and celery (my cubicle can get pretty noisy) on a regular basis, with a side of hummus or sun butter.  So, so tasty.  Fruits are great too, but they don’t hold the filled feeling to me as long as veggies.

Water: Since my workouts take place post-lunch time, it’s a necessity.  I drink up a whole bottle in no time.

Desserts or snacks are rare in my lunch these days, but today I put two WhoNu chocolate chip cookies in there and considered lunch a masterpiece for the day thanks to their addition.  Who doesn’t love cookies?

Side Note: I have ALWAYS ate my lunch in the order of main dish, sides and THEN dessert.  Even as a child I would watch my friends rip in to their dessert first thing and I never did.  Is that strange?

While this is pretty typical day, leftovers are also a favorite when my timing is off in the morning.  Those are the days that lunch just can’t come fast enough!

What’s in your lunch box?

I’m in the market for a new lunch box.  The above lunch box was a quick Amazon buy a year and a half ago and it’s pretty much on its last legs.  I’m loving this one in Mocha Rouge or this one in Organic Poppy.  What do you think?

P.S. Have you liked Sand Between My Sneakers on Facebook yet? LIKE ME!  I’ll like you back 😉

New York City Soda Ban

18 Sep

Today has been a very gloomy day and with non stop rain and clouds.  It put quite the negative twist on getting my cardio in for the day.  I planned on getting a 45 minute run in outside today, but the weather just wouldn’t have it.  So, it was off to the gym I went.

It’s just you and me, kid.

Since I was more concerned about getting to the gym dry, I completely forgot about grabbing some kind of treadmill back up plan.  So, this is what I came up with.

It is really hard for my to stay on the treadmill for more the 30 minutes. So while this workout wasn’t incredibly difficult even with the added incline, the determination to stay on that treadmill was.  I was a sweaty mess though from my face down my legs and arms.

After I showered, I prepared dinner and ate with the windows open to enjoy the cool breeze from the rain.

Dinner

For dinner:

  • Wegman’s Teriyaki Pork w/ a spoonful of Wegman’s Organic BBQ Sauce
  • Fresh Steamed String Beans
  • White Baked Potato w/ a spoonful of Plain Greek Yogurt

New York City Soda Ban

Last Thursday, New York City Board of Health announced their controversial ban on limiting the size of sugary drinks (16 oz. or less) at many entertainment areas to include restaurants and movie theaters.  I have been reading about the backlash and criticisms since.

I am not a soda drinker, but my husband is on occasion.  We often go back and forth on “how much is too much” mostly because I can’t understand the need for it or the taste (I can’t stand the carbonation).  A lot of the criticism I have been hearing include government control, but what I found most interesting is that they are limiting the ban in many forms.  Grocery stores stores are exempt from the law as well as alcoholic beverages and fruit drinks which sometimes contain too much sugar themselves.

Another theory, why New York City?  One of the biggest vacation cities in the country where people expect to come and enjoy themselves.  Now, they are limited to what they can order?  Shouldn’t it be there choice?  Are people taking this issue just a bit to seriously?  Isn’t 16 oz. enough?

Personally, the ban doesn’t effect me either way, but I think there are different approaches the government could make.  People are going to make their own decisions and having a few less oz. of soda isn’t going to make a huge difference if you consume it at every meal.

Thoughts?

Do you think the government is over stepping their boundaries?  Do you think other popular cities are close behind with the ban on sugary drinks?

Leave a comment below with your thoughts on this issue.

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