Leg Day & Giving Back

 

Good Morning and Happy Friday!

I am soooo glad its Friday- this week went by way to slow for me…..but on a brighter note, lets highlight an awesome workout from last night!

Does anyone else Love Leg Day at the gym?

I always look forward to leg day since this is the day I feel I always really challenge myself :)

Last night’s workout had my legs burnin’ all over!

FEEL THE BURN LEG WORKOUT:

Smith Machine Squats- 3 sets 8-10 reps

One Leg Squats holding plates- 3 sets 10 reps each leg

Seated Leg Curls 3 sets 7-8 reps

Standing Leg Curls 3 sets 7-8 reps

Leg Press 3 sets 8 reps- drop set at the end.  The drop set was the real kicker:

You do as many reps as you can with feet placed high, then drop your feet to the middle and do as many reps as you can.

Immediately take 1 plate off each side and repeat with feet high and then low.

Drop down 1 more plate and repeat.  At this point I only had 2 plates on there, but OH MY GOSH my legs were on FIRE!

Let’s just say my legs are already sore and its only day one!

 

Giving Back

At the beginning of every year my husband and I write down our goals for the year on a whiteboard on the fridge.

This year, the first this I wrote down was “Volunteer More”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please Pass The Salt

Good Morning!

Can you believe its March already?

Last night it was back to the grind at the gym & I had an awesome arm workout!

A new lift I added in this week- the dumbbell wall curls.

Wall curls are great as they make you have perfect form- no cheating! :)

DINNER

Dinner last night came together in a snap!  I’ve been craving a tuna salad all week- here’s what went into the mix:

Bright

Fresh

Crisp

It totally hit the spot!

Recently I’ve heard a lot of questions about sodium: How much do we need, why do we need it, and how to avoid it?

SODIUM:

Sodium is needed to:

Help maintain fluid levels in our body

Help transmit nerve impulses and

Help contract and relax our muscles
Since sodium helps us retain water- if you levels are too low you may find yourself making extra trips to the restroom throughout the day.

On the flip side, however, is where you can get into trouble.  The extra retained water can start to build up in your blood making it that much more difficult for your body to move the blood through the blood vessels which increases pressure on your arteries = Not a good thing!
Studies show the average adult consumes over 3400 mg of sodium per day……. that is WAY over the recommended amount of 2300 mg.  (less is always better)

How much is 2300 mg you ask? 1 TBSP of salt= 2300 mg of sodium?

Surprised?

Don’t be!  About 75% of the sodium in our diets are already added to our foods by manufacturers. Unless you are eating a diet with mostly fresh unprocessed foods, your sodium intake is most likely higher than it should be.


How to control your sodium intake:

Read the labels!  You might be surprised to know how much sodium is in the foods you eat.  For example, an oat bagel has a little over 500 mg of sodium, and soy sauce has around 1,000 mg of sodium.  Thats almost half a days worth right there- YIKES!  Some ingredients that indicate sodium are Baking Soda and Powder, MSG, Sodium Alginate and Sodium Nitrate.
Here are some foods high in sodium to watch out for:

-Salty & Smoked Meats and Fish: Lunch Meat, Bacon, Ham, Sausage, Sardines,  Smoked Salmon

-Foods in a brine: Pickles, Olives

-Junk Food/Snacks: Potato Chips, Pretzels, Popcorn, Salted Nuts

-Condiments: Salad Dressings, Soy Sauce, Barbeque Sauce, Worcestershire sauce, Ketchup

-Canned Items: Soups, Beans, Broths
Low sodium diet tips:
Eat more fresh fruits and veggies

Use herbs and spices to season food instead of salt or Mrs. Dash Seasonings ** Pantry Staple for me :)

Always opt for the low sodium option when offered

Leave salt out of recipes (besides baking- this can really affect the taste)

Make your own soups and pasta/rice sauces

Buy beans in a bag- not a can


You might want to think twice next time before asking “Please pass the salt”

QUESTION:
Do you watch your sodium intake or have you never really thought about it?

What are some of your favorite ways to add flavor without salt?

Sleigh Ride

Good Morning and Happy Leap Day!

Do you ever take a day off from the Gym AND the Kitchen?

I usually don’t, but last night was an exception- and a great one at that!

My family and I got to go on a Horse Drawn Sleigh Ride in the mountains last night courtesy of Bogus Creek Outfitters.

My family and I enjoyed a 20 minute sleigh ride enjoying the beautiful views:

We arrive at a little dinner cabin where we were greeted with a warm wood burning stove and hot chocolate ( I enjoyed some sugar-free cider).

Everyone brought their own dinner and enjoyed each other’s company.  I spent most of my time outside with the horses or by the fire since it was only about 20 degrees outside——-BBBBUUURRRR

Check out the gorgeous horses:

They said the biggest one weighs 1600 lbs- No wonder they don’t get cold in the snow!

This was such an amazing experience and I am so blessed to have shared it with my family!  This would also make an excellent date night for anyone who lives in the Boise area!

Even though I had an amazing time last night, you better believe I’m itchin’ to get to the gym today!

Can 5:00 come any faster please?

QUESTION?

Do you ever take a day of from working out and/or cooking and baking?

Have you ever done anything like this sleigh ride before?

Post Workout Nutrition

Good Morning!

Breakfast this morning was out of this world delicious!  I usually don’t make my oats on the stovetop, but I’m glad I did today! :)

I used Unsweetened Almond Milk instead of water- this made them extra creamy!

The banana and raisins added a natural sweetness and the peanut butter added a salty touch.

The perfect combination of Salty & Sweet!

Moving on, let’s talk about what to eat after a workout:

POST WORKOUT NUTRITION:

A common question I hear all the time is what to eat after a workout.

Proper post workout nutrition is important for everyone, whether you are trying to lose, gain or maintain.

After a workout your muscles are torn and glycogen levels (the storage form of carbohydrates)are depleted.

Studies show that post-workout carbohydrates are 125% more likely to be stored as glycogen than fat than any other time of day.

Post-workout is also the best time for protein synthesis (the building of new muscle).

Why not take advantage of this optimal time and give your body what it wants and needs?!

So, what kind of protein and carbohydrates to consume post-workout?  I suggest having a post-workout shake- the liquid will absorb faster.

Also, you need to have this shake within 30 minutes of finishing your workout.  If you have a long drive home from the gym- bring your shake with you and just add water!

source

Carbohydrates:

After training, you want the fastest acting carbohydrates as possible.  You want to consume carbohydrates that are high on the glycemic index to rapidly replenish blood sugar levels and insulin.

Dextrose (yes, you read that correctly) is one of the best sources of quick carbohydrates you can have after a workout.  So you mean it’s okay to eat sugar? Yes-This is the only time of day when it is actually beneficial to have sugar.

Some other good options would be Gatorade, Rice Cakes and Fruit.  If you choose to eat fruit post-workout, make sure it is a fruit high in glucose and not fructose.  Some good choices would be bananas and cherries.

Protein:

It’s not surprising that it takes protein to build muscle.  After a workout you want a quick absorbing protein like Whey.  Choose a good Whey Protein source like Optimum Nutrition to have in your post-workout shake.

So what about Healthy Fats you ask?  Eating foods high in fat post-workout will reduce the effectiveness of your shake by slowing down the absorption of the protein and simple carbohydrates.  This is the one time of day to avoid those healthy fats!

Then what?

Gets lost of sleep and watch your muscles grow! :)

QUESTIONS:

Do you usually use water or milk in your oats?

Are you getting the proper nutrition after a workout?

Source

Wholly Brussel Sprouts

Good Morning!

I feel like I have so much to catch you up on!

Good new to report about my second soccer game: Cereal Killers Win! I scored one goal with a few assists- I’m definitely getting my touch back! Immediately after each game I’m already looking forward to the next one.

There are a couple recipes I want to share with you from the weekend.

At last week’s shopping trip we picked up some fresh brussel sprouts vs. the usual frozen ones we usually purchase, and they were HUGE.
Check these puppies out:

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My Pre-Soccer game fuel featured these roasted with carrots and sweet potatos.

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We served this along side a grilled chicken breast- such a hearty winter meal!

Sunday was as busy as ever- I felt like I didn’t stop until my head hit the pillow last night.

After a Chest and Shoulder workout yesterday I once again I did a lot of food prep for the week. I made Egg White Frittatas, Grilled Chicken, Brown Rice, Steamed Broccoli and some Spinach Quinoa Burgers.

I had some extra quinoa in the fridge I needed to use so I thought why not incorporate it into a burger?!

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For the leanest version use ground turkey and an egg white instead of the full egg.

Hopefully no one has a case of the Mondays today- Don’t let Monday deter you from working out!

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Question:

Brussel Sprouts: Love them or hate them?

Sweet Potato Turkey Chili

Good Morning!

Is everyone as happy it’s the weekend as I am?

I was totally looking forward to sleeping in this morning until I remembered I had to go to the dentist at 8am….. What was I thinking?

Let’s backtrack to dinner and workout last night.

Workout:

Mom and I hit legs last night- and since it’s never busy on Friday nights we didn’t have to wait for any of the equipment which was really nice! :)

Leg Press 4 sets 8 reps
Straight Leg Deadlifts 3 sets 8 reps
Smith Machine Lunges 3 sets 10 reps
Lying Leg Curls 4 sets 8 reps
Seated Leg Press 3 sets 8 reps drop set
Standing Calf Raises 2 sets 10-15 reps

Dinner last night was prepared yesterday morning.
If you don’t have a crock pot, I highly recommend getting one- they are so handy!
All you have to do is “set it and forget it”

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I added lots of chili powder and left the seeds in the jalepeno so the chili had a kick to it!

After dinner some of us went and saw SafeHouse with Ryan Reynolds and Denzel Washington.
It was an excellent movie- Intense throughout the whole movie and I highly recommend this one! :)

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source

I hope you have a great Saturday!

Has anyone seen this movie? If so, what did you think of if?
What are your workout plans today?

Clean Eating Grocery Shopping Tips

Good Morning and Happy Friday!

Since I know that everyone loves tolerates grocery shopping, here are a few tips to help you get in and out with a clean cart!

GROCERY SHOPPING TIPS:

*Shop the perimeters of the store- this is where all the fresh fruits, veggies, meats and fish and bulk items are usually located.

*Try to choose real fresh foods- NOT processed.

*Shop on a full stomach- You will be less tempted with sugary impulse buys.

*Shop with a list- This will also reduce impulse buys.

*Read the labels- make sure “whole wheat” is really whole wheat, make sure there are no added ingredients.

*Buy Plain- buy plain yogurt, plain oatmeal etc and flavor at home.

*When buying canned goods- look for low sodium options

You will be in and out in no time!

Take a look at our cart from last night’s trip:

Green Peppers-Red Peppers- Cauliflower- Brussel Sprouts- Brocolli- Onion- Jalepeno- Sweet Potatoes

Lean Ground Beef- Lean Ground Turkey- Frozen Spinach- Frozen Mixed Veggies- Unsweetened Almond Milk

 

After the trip to the grocery store it was time for dinner!

This took me all but 10 minutes to make- who says healthy can’t be “fast food”?

WORKOUT

My Workout last night was SHOULDERS!  I love shoulder day since that’s the one body part I feel I’m lacking right now.

This workout was no joke- my shoulders were burnin’ from the get go!  I threw some abs in at the end too :)

 

I wanted to leave you with a wonderful fortune I opened this morning: (If you’re wondering where I got a fortune cookie at 7 am- The hubby had Panda last night and he got 2 fortunes. Lucky Me :)

 

Question:

Do you have any favorite go to healthy “fast foods”?

Any fun plans for the weekend?

-I’m pumped for my 2nd soccer game tomorrow night- I’ve been thinking about it all week! :)

 

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