Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Peachy Keen

Oh hello Utah Peaches.
So glad you've finally arrived.
Thanks mom :). 
Would you like me to ship you some? Sure.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Eat With Me Monday

It is amazing how much it helps me to keep track of my food! As I mentioned yesterday I had some goals I wanted to work on this week. I wanted to be sure to get started off right as far as food was concerned, so I decided today would be a day I photo tracked my food. Today's meals went a lil' something like this...

Breakfast: My fave Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal
1/2 cup of slow cooked oats, cooked 
1-2 T of ff/sf chocolate pudding mix
1 T of Splenda
drizzled with PB

You want to know something that is GREAT about my job? ...my clients, obviously. They are SO good to me, I swear. Today one of my clients brought me a whole bag of fresh tomatoes and a cucumber from her garden. Seriously, those little baby yellow tomatoes are like candy. Melt in your mouth goodness is what I'm talking about.

Snack: A handful of yellow baby tomatoes
Lunch: Turkey/Tomato/Avocado wrap with a lil' bit of mustard and some romaine lettuce on a La Tortilla Factory Whole Wheat Low Carb Tortilla.
Served with a side of thickly sliced tomatoes.
My mom and dad have spent the last 10 days on an Alaskan cruise, and decided to spend their last day of vacation back here in Utah, so I joined them for some dinner tonight.

Dinner: Brick Oven Salad
I feel like people think I'm kidding when I say I could eat from a salad bar every night and be happy about it.  I'm not, I promise. 

Thanks M&D. Aren't they cute?

Dessert: Maverick Fat Free Frozen Yogurt Cone (I promise it looked a lot better when I made it.) It tasted oh, so good.

Workout for the day:
60 mins of cardio intervals on the elliptical
Hiking the Y with my friend George. We ran a few of the switchbacks, and by the end of it I was SWEATING. Utah peeps, if you want a good workout...get to the Y.

I felt like this was a great start to the week! Did your Monday get off to a good start? I hope so! Do you prefer eating your frozen yogurt from a cone or a bowl? I LOVE a good cone, but frozen yogurt in any form makes me really happy!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Neighborhood Sundays and Getting Ready for a New Week

I've fallen in love with summer nights. There is just something so amazing about being able to walk outside and enjoy getting out of the house at a perfect temperature. Sunday evening was one of those.
These beautiful summer evenings are dwindling. My challenge to you? Take advantage of some good weather and GET ACTIVE! Our Sunday stroll in the canyon was definitely a favorite outdoor evening activity of mine this summer. We made yesterday's outing just as fun!
Go for a walk, longboard, ride your bikes, play catch, get a game of football going, or walk to a neighbors house for a visit.
 These temps won't be here forever, so take advantage.
 I know I will.
This past week was a rough one for me. Having a few days not feeling good last week really threw a wrench in things.  I missed a couple workouts from feeling nauseous, and nothing sounded good to me to eat. The thought of eating meat, greek yogurt, and all my other basics just sounded awful. The only thing that sounded good to me was cold cereal. I felt like my macro nutrient percentages were all over the place, and I wasn't on top of my eating/exercise game.

I'm finally feeling back on top of things, and I'm ready to start over this week. I'm going to start the week off by setting some goals.

Very simple goals, but what I need to get me back on track; Cut out the snacking, get back into my normal food routine, and get my workouts in everyday.

Today is going to be a photo food day. I have people that ask me what I eat daily, and so I'm going to kill two birds with one stone here. Knowing I'll be documenting my food for the day will help me to get back on track, and will also give peeps an idea of what I eat in a normal day.

What are your favorite summer evening activities? Are you taking advantage of these final summer nights? It's amazing how much easier it is to be active when you can go outside and have decent weather to do so. Do you have any goals for the upcoming week?

My Kitchen Favorites

Eating healthy can be made so much easier when you have the right tools to do so. I thought I'd share some of my favorite kitchen appliances that help me to eat healthier.

1. My Mini Cuisinart Food Processor.
I LOVE this little guy. It is perfect for making fresh salsa, or for dicing up onions for all of your healthy recipes. I also love it for making frozen banana soft serve and to puree zucchini for my fave zucchini cookies. I made a batch last night for church today, and they were scarfed right up!
Sometimes current Macys coupons apply to small appliances, so watch for that and get a Cuisinart.

2. Hamilton Beach Crock Pot
 If you don't own a crock pot, you need to get one. They are a GREAT way to make eating healthy possible, no matter what your time schedule.
My favorite crock pot recipes?
Salsa Chicken
Elegant Chicken
BBQ Chicken
White Bean Chicken Chili
and Steel Cut Oats

3. Good Grips Salad Spinner
I think I've already mentioned how much I love my salad spinner. It is seriously the greatest invention ever. Having soggy lettuce in a salad is the worst thing ever, let's be honest. Nobody likes that. Whipping up some quick salads make for a great method of getting a lot of fruits and veggies in at one time. My favorite salads? I love my go to Fiesta Chicken Salad, or a delicious Greek Salad.  

4. Digital Food Scale.
 If you are really trying to be exact with you food choices and portions when trying to lose weight, a food scale is a great purchase. You may be surprised how off you are on "eye balling" the foods you eat. It seems like people are usually drastically off on the oz amount of their cuts of meat and their pieces of fruit. 

 5. Stainless Steel Cookie Scoop.
 My mom has always used one of these, and I remember when I first moved out of the house I made cookies without one and felt quite unsure of how in the heck you get perfect cookies without one. Don't worry, my mom quickly remedied that problem, and got a scoop for me. I love this for making any sort of cookies and it works great for scooping batter into individual muffin tins as well.
Some good healthy recipes to try? Whole wheat pumpkin chocolate chip cookies or these Healthy Cinnamon Sweet Potato Muffins...both great recipes for fall!

6. Good Grips Apple Cutter.
 If you have kids, these are the BEST. Heck, if you don't have kids these are the best. These make for the quickest snack. Cut up an apple and dip it in some peanut butter and you are good to go! YUM!

7. Silicone Oven Mitts
I have raved about these Sur La Table silicone oven mitts before. They are so great, and they are dishwasher safe. Awesome. You can be ready to handle any hot and healthy dish with these bad boys!

I could go on with kitchen products I love, but these are just a few that I absolutely couldn't live without! What are some of your favorite kitchen appliances? If you tell me it's your Kitchen Aid or your Vitamix I'm gonna be reaaal jealous.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Buying Fresh and Local

Today after the gym Benita and I hit up the local Provo Farmers Market. I have been wanting to go all summer, but I finally made it there today. There were so many fresh fruits and vegetables I was in LOVE. 
We walked up and down the rows of fresh produce, fresh bread, and all sorts of other knick knacks that people come up with. It was a beautiful sunny day which made our outing just about perfect. Don't worry that I manage to parade around in my sweaty gym clothes all day. I am still loving my Soffe Tank btw. 
I think I will definitely be visiting the Farmers Market every Saturday until the fall when the harvest is over. How can you pass up goods like this?
 Especially when they make buying organically grown foods so cheap and easy. 
You should most definitely check to see where the closest local farmers market is to your home. You will not regret it. Some of the benefits of buying local...
- Freshness. When you are buying local you know you are getting produce at the peak of it's freshness, and not after sitting in a refrigerated truck for days. 
- Maximum nutrient content. Because your produce is extremely fresh, you will be getting the maximum amount of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. The longer produce sits the less nutrients it contains. 
- The price is right. Usually you are getting awesome fresh produce at a great price, especially for the quality of what you're buying.
- You can branch out. When you have the opportunity to buy fresh produce in single form you may be more likely to try some new things. When you are picking from what is in season and being offered you might have your eyes opened to something new and delicious. 
- You may be able to get organic goods. Depending on your farmers market, there may be farmers with organic produce at a great price. THAT is awesome. 
 Benita came away with some fresh and delicious peaches. 
For the local Utahn's the Provo Farmers Market is held at Pioneer Park. Click HERE for more info. 
 I came away with a delicious zucchini (that I plan on using to make some of my fave zucchini cookies with), and some fresh tomatoes....probably my favorite thing about fresh produce. I miss having my parents garden to go tomato crazy. I already ate one. It was as good as I'd hoped. 
 By this time Benits and I had been walking around looking at food for too long and we were STARVING. Benits is moving to SLC this week :( Sad. Yes. I don't want to talk about it...BUT, we decided we'd better hit up our favorite lunch spot one more time before she went. 
 Yes, you guessed it. The Pizza Factory. 
 Don't worry that our waitress walked up to our table and said, "The usual?"
Right she was. 
Now, tell me that isn't an impressive balancing act? A boatload of veggies. I loved every bite of it. I'm going to miss our Saturday gym sessions followed by PF lunch with my Benits. I reaalllly am. 

Do you ever shop at your local farmers market? I think it is something EVERYONE should do. Good produce is just the tops. It really is. What is your favorite "garden fresh" food? Mine is definitely tomatoes! hmmm...and peaches.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Say Cheese!

Today a VERY good thing happened. Ever since I've been blogging I've hated my pics. I'm always snapping photos with my blackberry, but it just doesn't have that same great look as a real camera. I have wanted a digital SLR for the longest time...like years. So I decided at the beginning of this year I was going to save up my monies and make it happen. And guess what? This just might be the last photo you see from the eyes of my blackberry.
Today my lil' dream came true. I got a Canon Rebel, and I'm THRILLED about it! I am SO excited to improve my blog even more with some great pics! In fact, I can't wait to find a great healthy recipe to make to snap photos of. Yes, I am THAT big of a nerd!! :)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The short and short of it. I hate bugs.

Not feeling so great is not so great. I've had a few clients come in the past couple weeks having just gotten over a stomach bug, or coming down with it shortly after I've been training with them. I think I picked up something from someone along the way cause my stomach hasn't liked me much today. On the up side I can positively say I've mastered not grazing for the day.

As for other bugs...I wonder if the lotion I'm using has mosquito bait in it, cause I acquired 10 new mosquito bites after stepping outside yesterday. It itching your bites attractive? I bet.

I hate bugs. 
I promise a real post tomorrow.
But until then I'll post this pic for you of a lady I saw shopping a few weeks ago and maybe you'll burn a couple calories from laughing at it.
Yep. This is real life. You better watch what you wear when you're shopping around me because I will find you, photograph you, and post you. ;) 

xoxoxo Megs

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Cleaning Burns Calories

This morning was the usual Tuesday for me.
Work with my usual Tuesday morning clients.
My own cardio and lifting.
Then I cleaned my house for about two and a half hours. We're talking deep cleaning...scrubbing floors/mopping/bleaching...Needless to say after all the cleaning I felt like I had just gone through a second workout. Good thing I wear my workout clothes all day, right?
I decided to do some post cleaning research and I calculated that I burned around 600 calories from my cleaning. I felt good about it. It was a great reminder to me that leading an active lifestyle doesn't have to mean working out 10 hours a day. By being an active person you can burn calories just the same. Sometimes busy mom's don't have time to clean the house and make it to the gym. If this is the case all you need to do is get moving and burn some calories while you're cleaning.

So, put on some of your favorite loud tunes...if you are like me that is the only way to clean...and sing your little heart out while you clean/dance your way around the kitchen. Put some elbow grease into it and you'll work up a sweat.
Click HERE for a link to show what your cleaning calorie burn adds up to be!

Do you feel like cleaning is a workout for you? I always do, but I kinda love it. I am a little bit of a clean freak. If you feel like you need to burn of some extra calories for the day pick up your cleaning supplies and get going!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Improving Your Heath with Baby Steps

I have a fabulous client that I have been working with for about three years. She is seriously AWESOME. We got her ready for a wedding, worked of the weight from two babies, and have been through many hours at the gym together...many hours of baby steps.
When she came to me as a client starting out I remember sitting down with her and asking her to keep track of her food for the next week. She did and brought back a fairly blank food chart. Most days looked something like this.

Taco Bell
Mt Dew

When we would talk about her making food changes, our goals were things like..."Try to be more specific when writing down food"...and..."only drink one Monster a day." For those who are very health conscious, those goals seem extremely easy to reach, but for this client it was very difficult.

Months passed, and this clients goals started to change to goals like...choose Subway over Taco Bell when eating out, or choose to drink Diet Coke over Mt. Dew. Baby steps of progress.

Still more time passed and the goals turned to things like; try to eat at home (We're talking Lean Cuisines and Eggs and Toast.) Again, depending on where you are at on your health journey these may seem like easy goals, but to this client, reaching these goals were more like reaching milestones.

Fast forward to last week. This client of mine was asking me questions about the amount of sodium that is in foods, and how to incorporate more healthy fruits and vegetables into her kids and husbands meals. Her goals are more focused on eating at home, and the quality of food that she is eating.

After our conversation, she left and I sat there in awe almost. I realized just how far she has come in her journey. She still has some progress that she needs and wants to make to reach her goals, but she makes baby steps toward progress every day, and that is what matters. What I really admire in her is she has really tried to make her changes part of her lifestyle, and not just a quick fix weight loss solution.

It is amazing the things you can do with baby steps. Yes, weight loss can be hard. Yep, achieving your fitness goals may seem very difficult, whatever they may be. However, the truth is, you will be surprised at what you can accomplish if you will simply stick to your goals. You may take some steps backwards, and you may have discouraging days, but don't give up! You can do amazing things! Baby Steps!!

What are some goals you have reached by taking baby steps? I would say all of my fitness and health goals (running a marathon, losing weight, achieving strength and endurance goals) have all been accomplished by baby steps. One day at a time is the only way you can do it. What are some goals you are working towards that are going to take baby steps?

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Saturday Full Body Weights Routine

Ahhh. I love Saturdays. Waking up without my alarm is my favorite. Although my alarm was still set from yesterday, and went off faithfully this morning. Oops. It felt really good just to turn it off and roll back over.

This morning's workout felt great.

Cardio: 45 mins of intervals on the elliptical.
I really wanted to do the stairs today, but they were taken, so elliptical it was. I managed to entertain myself by watching Big & Rich Texas. Wow...some people are ridiculously entertaining.

Weights: 50 mins of full body

3 sets of each alternating exercises

12 leg press squats with the sled (270 lbs, 280 lbs, 290 lbs) Increasing weight each set
12 single leg front raises with a 25 lb plate

12 right arm balancing rear rows (on top of bench 20 lb db in right hand and row back with left leg in the air so your balance is thrown off)
12 left arm balancing rear rows with 20 lb db
12 single leg squats on left foot with right arm doing a bicep curl at the top with 20 lb db
12 single leg squats on right foot left arm doing a bicep curl at the top with 20 lb db

15 pushups
15 tricep push backs with 12 lb db
20 alternating step ups on high bench with 12 lb db

15 core row outs on the TRX
15 lower ab leg lifts
30 cherry pickers

This afternoons workout was even better...
wake boarding and paddle boarding at the lake. Man I wish that I would have had my camera!

What was your Saturday workout? I know there were a lot of people racing today! Have you ever paddle boarded? It is an AWESOME core workout. Lots of balance involved. I'm totally hooked!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Chicken Bruschetta Panini

I get stuck in a rut with my food sometimes. When that happens I try to get creative and mix things up a little bit. Today was one of those days. I came home from a great work out, and I was starving. I have found that it is important for me to get in a packed protein filled lunch or else my protein lacks for the day. I considered going with the usual healthy chicken salad or a tuna wrap, but neither were really doing much for me, so I decided to look at what else I had...I saw chicken, tomatoes, and my usual La Tortilla Factory Low Carb wraps, and I decided to mix things up and try something new. Who doesn't love the flavors of fresh bruschetta right? I threw it into panini (well...wafflini...form) and I was quite pleased with what I came up with!
Let's talk about my workout for the day before we get into the food, save the best for last, right?
Cardio: 60 Minutes of Elliptical Intervals. I was only planning on doing 30 mins of cardio today because it was a lifting day, but there was an episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians on that I hadn't seen, and I was to enthralled to stop. Cardio + Kardashians = Can do. Why do I love that show so much? 

Weights: 45 Minutes Full Body

3 sets of each group of exercises alternating between exercises

12-15 assisted pull ups
24 walking lunges with a 20 lb DB in each hand

12 squat curl press with 20 lb DB's
20 slow plank mountain climbers straight front
20 slow plank mountain climbers bringing knee in and across body (working the obliques)

12 chest flies with 20 lb DB's (feet up on bench pressing lower back down to work core)
12 sit ups on bench holding one of the 20 lb DB's above your head 
12 triceps kickbacks with 10 lb DB's
20 alternating reverse lunges holding 10 lb DB's

I felt adequately worked and schweaty. It was definitely time for lunch. 

Chicken Bruschetta Panini
In a small skillet I poured a tsp of olive oil and put in a frozen chicken breast over high heat. I sprinkled fresh black pepper, basil, and onion powder over the chicken and covered it to cook for about 3-5 minutes. 

While that was cooking I sliced up a handful of cherub tomatoes. I get the big carton from Costco. I flipped the chicken over and sprinkled a bit more pepper, onion powder, and basil over the other side of the chicken breast. While it finished cooking I heated up the waffle iron, you could certainly use a panini maker like a normal person if you'd like. I got out a La Tortilla Factory Low Carb Tortilla and shredded a part-skim string cheese on half of it. Once the chicken was done I cut it up in the pan and added the sliced tomates. I let that cook until the tomatoes began to deteriorate into a sauce. I added a pinch of salt and then poured the chicken tomato mixture over the tortilla and string cheese.
I folded the tortilla over and placed it in the waffle iron for a few minutes until the cheese was melted and the tortilla was crispy. 
 And voila! It was done just like that. It seriously was SO SO SO good. If you like bruschetta you'd LOVE this! It could easily be made on regular bread, served over a salad or even eaten alone. You could also add garlic to it if you like that garlic kick.

The stats are great too.
I felt reaaall good about it. Try it. You'll be glad you did.

Do you like bruschetta? I love the flavors, but tend to feel like I'm on a bread overload when I eat too much of it. Are you usually hungry after a work out? It depends with me, but when I work out before lunch I'm usually starving by the time I'm done!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

An At-Home Cardio Circuit Workout

As much as we love our machines, our running trails, and our cardio classes; sometimes getting out of the house for a workout is impossible for some reason. Other days...like maybe when you get snowed in for example...working out at home is all you can do. When circumstances don't do much to allow us to get out of the house, and you still want to get in a good sweat this At-Home Cardio Circuit Workout should be just what you need. With lots of intervals to get that heart rate up, you can do this workout anytime, anywhere, with NO equipment needed.

At Home Circuit Workout

*The key to this is to keep your heart rate up so try and go from one exercise to the next without stopping

Warm Up: 100 Jumping Jacks to get your blood flowing

Repeat this sequence 3 (or more) times through
25 jump squats
15 push ups
1 minute plank (make the plank harder by lifting up one foot or turn it into a crazy plank)
15 step ups on a (chair/bench/stair) on your right leg
15 step ups on your left leg
*if you don't have a chair or something to step up on you can do lunges in place

Repeat this sequence 3 (or more) times through
20 alternating step up push ups
20 alternating elevated plank mountain climbers
20 alternating plyometric lunges
15 oblique plank twists on the left and then 15 on the right

There you have it. A quick cardio interval workout that will tone while you work! You can add reps and sets to increase the difficulty level if necessary.

Speaking of the home...I made this canvas wall print for my bedroom this weekend, and I'm kinda in love with it!
See...I don't just workout and talk about health and fitness alllll the time...just most of it. :)

Do you ever workout at home? I prefer to workout at the gym...weird I know. If you do like to workout at home, What is your favorite "at-home" workout?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A History Lesson: And The Truth About Sodium

"You're the salt of the earth..." People use that phrase all the time and I'm quite certain a lot of them don't even know what it means.  It basically means that someone is a genuinely good and useful, hardworking, individuals who add value to others, and brings out the best in people.
Not to get all historical on you...but I'm gonna...the phrase actually goes back to biblical times when Jesus referred to his disciples as the "salt of the earth." Salt back then, and throughout history was used not only for bringing out the flavor in foods, but it was also used for preserving foods, healing, and disinfecting, among other things. It was a very valuable commodity to have because of it's many purposes. It meant they would be able to preserve food to eat in the coming months.

While it is pretty clear that salt is extremely important, now days we have taken salt usage to the extreme. It is loaded into the food we eat, namely the processed foods that are meant to last, which we happen to indulge in freely. Canned soups, frozen entrees, and processed meats are definitely culprits of excess sodium.

The body does need some salt to function. It helps to maintain your body's PH levels, helps to transmit nerve impulses, maintains your body's hydration inside and outside the cell, and has an influence on the contraction and relaxation of muscles. Your kidneys are the regulators of your sodium levels, holding onto what they need and excreting what they don't. Sometimes an increase in salt that can't be excreted. This salt can accumulate in the blood, as this happens your blood volume increases. This occurs because sodium attracts water and holds on to it. This is why when you eat an extremely high amount of sodium you retain fluid. This increase in blood volume doesn't just have to do with water weight, but can also lead to disease. The increased volume increases pressure in the arteries which over time can lead to diseases such as kidney disease, heart disease, strokes, congestive heart failure, and increased  blood pressure.

The dietary guidelines for american's that were laid out in 2010 suggest 2,300 milligrams per day for those under 51. For individuals over 51 or with diseases that are sodium sensitive 1,500 milligrams per day is recommended. Most Americans get double that in a day. Foods like canned/cured/processed meats, cheese, dressings, canned soup, processed snack foods (pretzels, salty peanuts, crackers, cheese puffs, popcorn, etc), pickled foods, and other frozen entrees and dinners are some of the most commonly devoured culprits. This doesn't mean that you can't or absolutely shouldn't eat them, only that you should be mindful of your diet and try to vary the foods you intake instead of eating only foods high in salt.

Some ways to decrease your sodium intake are:
- stick to fresh produce
- if fresh produce isn't available choose frozen as your second option, then canned.
- cook your own meat
- make your own soups and main courses. If the recipe calls for salt wait to add it until you have tasted it. It may not even need the amount of salt it is calling for.
- choose to flavor with fresh herbs and spices instead of always loading on the salt
- go easy on the processed snacks (or eliminate them altogether, chances are they aren't that great for you anyways)
- check your labels. It never hurts to be in the know.

It should also be known that endurance athletes who exercise for hours longer than three hours at a time are at risk for having a depleted sodium stores in the body which can be dangerous. Using endurance supplementation while you are running is a great way to be sure you don't have this problem.

Are you a salty food type of person? Are you seeing some possible ways that you could cut back your sodium intake?

Monday, August 15, 2011

Sunday Strolling; Burn Some Leisure Calories

Some Days in Utah are just unbelievably beautiful. I hope everyone gets a chance to see how pretty the expansive mountains are when they are so green. I wish I took more time to go and enjoy being in the midst of them, but you know how it is...life gets crazy.

This weekend I was able to enjoy the pretty mountain scenery on both Saturday and Sunday. Sunday I went to one of the prettiest weddings I've EVER attended. It was amazing. The big party was held up at the bride's home located in the mountains. It was unreal. I failed to bring my camera, but if I get some pics I will post them.

Yesterday, my friends and I did one of my FAVORITE things. We grabbed our bikes and longboards and went riding in the canyon. This is the canyon I usually run in all summer long, but since I haven't been running as much I was SO happy to get up there. It is breathtakingly beautiful.
It was the perfect Sunday afternoon activity. We had SO much fun. We just sang and talked and laughed the whole way down. It was another great reminder to me that there are so many great ways to be active aside from just getting together and eating, which we may or may not have done previous to the biking... Sunday is usually my rest day, but this was a great little calorie burning bonus that I felt great about.

After a whole weekend of being outside I've decided I must have some sort of mosquito bait in my blood. I am pretty sure I ended up with about 50 mosquito bites and they're killing me. Any remedies you'd like to share?

My challenge to you for the week? Instead of meting a friend or family member for lunch or ice cream, decide instead to meet for a walk or a bike ride. You will feel SO good after! What are your favorite leisure ways to burn some extra calories? I love riding my cruiser.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sweaty-ness - How do you beat the heat?

If you are sweating non-stop for four days it's almost like you're constantly exercising, right? Since I've come back from AZ, our AC has been broken in our house. Let me just tell you... IT'S. SO. HOT. Oh blessed air conditioning, I really do miss you. I have been doing all that I can to cool down. My favorite ways to beat the heat?

Taking a dip in a cold pool.
Driving around in my car with the AC BLASTING.
Sipping on giant glasses of ice water and DDP.
Eating Frozen Yogurt with friends.
Spending time wherever it is cool...
The mall, the grocery store, work, the movies...

Side note: I went to see The Help, and it was so amazing. It was one of my Summer Reading Picks, and so I was so excited to get to see the movie. Go see it! Read the book too...so worth it.

Eating cold foods. Why is that all that sounds good to me when it's so stinking hot is cereal, protein shakes, salads, and wraps?
Continuing to not dry my hair...air drying is cool right?
 Beach waves are in I hear...

Oh and of course...working out in the heavily air conditioned gym. I prefer to sweat intentionally, and not because I walked from the kitchen to the living room. 
Today is my rest day, so I'll give you the deets on yesterday's workout
Cardio/Warm up: 35 minutes of intervals on the elliptical
Weights: Full Body 45 minutes

Set #1:
3 sets of each 
15 Assisted pull ups
alt with
20 plyometric lunges

Set #2:
3 sets of each
12 Squat curl press with 40 lb bar
alt with
20 step ups (right and left) with 15 lb db's
alt with
1 minute 1 legged plank (alternating feet in the air every 10 seconds)

Set #3: 
3 sets of each
15 full push ups
alt with
12-15 triceps dips on bench with feet on the ball

Here's to hoping this AC issue gets fixed quickly...
I made the mistake of turning on the oven to make these Frosted Banana Bars
The mistake not being that I made them...but that I turned the oven on. Yikes. Time to strip down and jump in a cold shower. I hope your weekend has been amazing! 

How do you cool down during the summer heat? I'll take any suggestions I can get! Did you get a good Saturday workout in?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Pressures of Social Eating and How to Overcome Them

I like to eat. I just do. I'm guessing you do too, and if you don't...well...you crazy. Have you ever stopped to realize that SO MUCH of what we do revolves around food. I can honestly say I don't remember the last party or get together that I attended where there wasn't a spread of food or treats of some sort, and I think if there wasn't everyone would probably be a little confused. 

Truth: We like to eat.
Truth: We like to eat together. 
 Truth: We like to eat together at home
Truth: We like to eat together away from home. 
It gives us fun reasons to hang out with the people we love.
 It can bring the life to a party
(Yep my fam gets wild come time for our Christmas party)

And if you are me...it can make the fun things you do...just a lil' more fun.
 BUT...While all of these things may be true...it can create a problem for those of us who are trying to be healthy, eat well, lose weight, get in shape, and accomplish goals. Having food around us at every event, in every social situation, and at every possible MOMENT creates some hard situations to master.

So, what is the healthy individual to do when your environment just isn't doing you any favors? I've had SEVERAL people express this concern to me in the past few weeks, and I want to help you to master situations such as this. Here are my suggestions...

1) Eat ahead - If you know you are going to a party with food and you aren't sure what you are going to be served eat before you go and bypass the meal altogether. You WON'T hurt the host's feelings, although if you are worried about it...quietly pull the host aside and tell them it all looks and smells fab, but you are really working toward some health goals that has you eating strictly. You could even tell them you have eaten recently and you aren't hungry. Be polite, but don't be afraid to say no.

2) Know the menu - If possible, find out what exactly will be served. This way you will be able to know if you feel good about eating what is being served or not. If you feel like it isn't going to jive with your healthy eating ways, eat beforehand or make arrangements to help it fit your diet.

3) Contribute - This is the best option. If you want to be able to eat something at the party...bring something healthy that you know you will eat. It's that simple. A great salad, healthy dessert, or even a fruit or veggie tray are a great contribution, and what host doesn't like some help!

4) Make your decisions BEFORE the event - Go in knowing you're either going to eat and be careful, or not eat at all. If you are on the fence you'll be more likely to go crazy.

5) Don't be a cow - You don't have to follow the herd. Just because everyone else is doing it/eating it/gorging themselves on it...doesn't mean you have to. Social pressures are hard, but only if you let them get to you.

6) Be mindful not mindless - Be aware of what the foods you are eating are made up of. Salads are a big culprit here...are they made with a fatty dressing, covered in cheese, and topped with every calorically dense food item known to man? Veggies can be a big one here too. If it looks like it's shining with butter, it probably is.

7) Think with your head and not your stomach - If you go into a social setting starving you are probably going to want to shove food in your face right when you get there. Take time to look at your options, decide how hungry you are, and be smart about the food choices you make. If you don't you might regret it later.

8) Record it - Write. It. Down. Be conscious of all your "bites" and "tastes." Those little itty bitty bites sure do add up quickly.

9) Accept it and move on - Sometimes you just want to be a part of the party, and that is ok too. HOWEVER, if this is your choice, make it, enjoy your food, and move on. Don't dwell on it and beat yourself up over it. Food isn't worth ruining your self esteem. Either eat, enjoy, and move on, or don't. It's up to you.
I guess what I'm trying to say here is be the one in control. Whether you decide to partake of your favorite dessert, or you use that willpower to withstand...own it. YOU choose what you want to do, and don't let the food and your wandering hands make the choice for you. The likeliness that we are going to stop having food at every event we attend is pretty slim, so learn how to adapt.