Monday, November 29, 2010

Getting Back on Track...

During the holiday we took sometime away from the gym to allow our bodies to rest and reset. I did originally have intentions on going for a walk/run, but the cold brisk temperatures deterred me and I left my Garmin at home.

Now that we are home the plan is to get back on track, though it isn’t always easy to do when you’ve been out of town over a weekend. Normally one day of my weekend is spent grocery shopping, doing laundry, and getting ready for the work week. While I did have a productive Sunday of driving and visits with family along the road home- there was no time left for any normal tasks.

So Monday night got an extra dose of activity:

Gym Workout
Grocery Shopping
Baking Chicken for the Week
Getting in a quick blog post

And Tuesday night will get more activity too:

Gym Workout
Baking Hidden Treasure Cookies

What tricks do you use to get back on track?

Thursday, November 25, 2010


On this Thanksgiving I am thankful for:

-My understanding and supportive husband. (I love you!)

-Our families and friends that are always there for us.

-Our home and the ability to make improvements on it.

-My health, and my personal decision to make changes for a better me.

-Our jobs. (Even though some days we wish for longer weekends.)

I'm thankful for so much that some days I don't realize all that God has made possible in my life.

What are you most thankful for?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Gettin' my glow on...

Monday night is a gym night, and with the holidays coming I wanted to make sure I got in a really good workout.

I started with some stretching and a light warm-up, then headed for the weights and completed the following upper body workout:

Bent Over Row- 60 lbs for 3 sets of 12
DB Shoulder Press- 20 lbs for 3 sets of 12
Lying Tricep Extensions- 30 lb barbell for 3 sets of 12
Barbell Curls- 40 lbs for 3 sets of 12
Bench Press- 45 lbs for 10 reps, 65 lbs for 10 reps, 75 lbs for 8 reps, 80 lbs for 4 reps, and then reversed back down to just the 45 lbs bar

It sounds like a lot, but it actually is a pretty quick workout. Then I headed over to the treadmill, my mind wasn't feeling the cardio at first but once I got going it felt good. I did the following cardio workout:

2 miles of intervals that were run at 1.0 incline:
1 min @ 4.0mph
1 min @ 6.5mph
1 min @ 4.0mph
2.5 min @ 6.0mph
1 min @ 4.0mph
1 min @ 6.5mph
1 min @ 4.0mph
2.5 min @ 6.0mph
Repeated for a second mile.

Total time was 22 minutes and 10 seconds- that's great for me!

Then as my "cool" down I walked at 10.0 incline @ 4.0mph for 6 minutes then brought it down to no incline for the last 2 minutes of my 30 minute cardio. And believe me that I looked like I had worked out...

Did you get your glow on today???

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Whirldwind Weekend...

It was another weekend of nice weather here in Buffalo, and yes, temperatures in the mid 40's still count as warm at this time of year. We got lots accomplished around our house and also helped out a friend.

Saturday we (read: mostly Matt) installed a garage door opener for one of our good friends, which took a while, but was very successful. It took about about six hours to get it perfectly up and running - pretty good for the first time. I think Matt is secretly hoping he might be able to use our friends garage to "tinker" with his car this winter, since we don't have one (a garage.)

After wrapping up the installation, we decided a quiet movie night at home was in order, so we headed to Wegmans for dinner and a movie. Matt got a sub, while I headed to the salad bar. At first I had a pretty lame looking salad, but I decided to think "out of the box" and created this:

It contained mixed greens, chopped eggs, onions, carrots, bean salad, tabbouleh, and then I grabbed a couple piece of Chinese Lemon Pepper Chicken (because you can't be healthy all the time!). last stop was tot the Redbox. We had a nice, relaxing night.

Sunday was another nice weather day so we worked around our house, and again we used the divide and conquer method.

Matt's accomplishments:
-insulating our pipes in the basement
-blanketing the hot water heater
-installing a storm door
-beginning to frame out the exterior of our new door

I accomplished:
-grocery shopping
-baking chicken
-baking brownies
-making spiced nuts
-baking cookies (Yum!)
-packing lunches
-making sweet potato gnocchi!

The house smells very yummy right now! jealous aren't you?!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Wish Granted...

Everyone that requested their car be washed- wish granted! But can we wait until the weather is warm again???

I got quite the workout washing our cars last weekend! I was basically doing squats for two-three hours straight, I could barely walk on Saturday evening. Later that night we went out to meet some friends at the bar, we played a few trivia rounds with the local bartender, then when we left my quads were so tight I had to lift my legs into the car! It was quite pathetic, and funny at the same time.

Don't worry I recovered by going bowling Sunday night. I'm not your typical bowler, I don't have any "proper" form. I basic lunge and warrior pose my way around the lanes, but it helped me to loosen up and stretch out my legs. Luckily I had no problem this week getting my all my workouts and cardio in, and now that it's Thursday night I'm looking forward to the weekend. One more day of work!

There's going to be lots of baking going on in my kitchen this weekend, I just have to resist the urge to taste test everything. Wish me luck!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Sponge Bath...

Today was a busy day...

We started our day with a run to a local home improvement store for some quarter-round that we need to finish the dining room and rest of the house. But while there, we got distracted by another potential project- exterior doors.

They had a great clearance door that has the mini-blind inside the glass panes!! How fun is that!? It was a pretty good deal, but since we didn't have the right vehicle with us we decided to check our look Habitat for Humanity Re-Store, to see if they had a better deal first.

Reuse didn't have anything to fit our needs, so we got the other car, the roof rack, and headed back across town to see if we could get an even better deal on the door. And my husband- so bargain savvy- got another $25 off! The door has some minor blemishes- but to me it's 1000 times better than our original door. Only $125!!!

And who says you need a pick-up truck...its multi purpose!

Matt was very excited for the new door, so he spent the rest of the day ripping out the old one, and installing the new one. It is "almost" done, and will be finished up tomorrow.

Now onto the sponge bath...

While Matt was busily installing the door, I decided to capitalize on this beautiful 60 degree weather in Buffalo and give the cars a sponge bath. Both of our cars were in serious need of some love. I sprayed and scrubbed them clean. I didn't realize just how dirty they were until I was up close cleaning!

Tomorrow I'm hoping to get to the interiors of both of our cars- oh and I really need to pick up some new brushes in preparation for the white stuff (aka the"s" word) that I'm sure will fall before I'm ready for it.

Off to dinner- I'm starving!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Melts in your mouth...

So last night when I left you I was off to bake. I love to bake, and cookies are my specialty. Recently I came across the idea of putting hidden treats inside my infamous chocolate cookies- and let me just tell you that it was an AMAZING idea!

Picture this...

One minute you are enjoying a chocolate chip cookie, then next thing you know you make it to the center!

In the center you could find a brownie, a peanut butter cup,a Rolo, or another mystery ingredient. Doesn't that just sounds delicious....

Based on reviews from a lucky few testers these cookies are worth every single calories. And in the interest of full disclosure these cookies are not healthy by any means. They are made with butter, sugars, and lots of chocolate- but everyone deserves a treat once in a while, right?

Would you like a cookie?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


it's what's for dinner and lunch, and well my snacks too. Obvously I have many other choices for protein, but for now I'm eating chicken because it's what I like!

For a new variety today, I baked up some chicken breasts in the oven. They look yummy don't they?

And they look like they are breaded, but that's just an optical illusion. It was actually nut-crusted chicken. The chicken was coated with ground up nuts and other seasonings. Nuts are a healthy fat and are an important part of my current meal plan.

To prepare:
1-Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2-Chop nuts in a food processor until they are finely, you can use any type of nut(s).
3-Flavor your nut mixture as you'd like, I chose garlic powder and ground pepper.
4-Coat the chicken in your nut mixture.
5-Place chicken in a foil lined pan, and bake for 45 minutes or until the juice runs clear when pierced.

I must tell you that the house smelled mighty yummy while it was baking, now I'm off to bake some cookies for a future visitor....

(Side Note: Thanks for all the comments on the last post- I can't tell you how happy it makes me to know that I have readers!)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Beer and Football....

Since my last post we have been very busy folks. Obviously we had our normal weekly activities, but we also took on the challenge of creating a cake for my brother-in-law's 30th birthday. And in our little world we don't just make a simple rectangle or circle, we go big or we (don't) go home! Which means if we are going to drive 2.5 hours one way to deliver a cake, it better be worth the trip.

My BIL, Paul, is a big football fan and isn't one to turn down an ice cold beer so we decided to use that for a theme. After many hours of decorating, we had a six pack of beer sitting on the 30 yard line- which was so appropriate. Check it out!

My hubby is responsible for the decorating of the cakes, and he does a great job and takes it very seriously. I'm responsible for the baking and gathering materials. It is a long process to create a cake, but it is worth it when the recipient really enjoys the creation!

We only spent the day at home, then headed back to Buffalo so that we'd still have Sunday to get stuff done at the house. So I shopped, cooked and cleaned; while Matt painted, installed fixtures, and other home improvement duties. One day wasn't quite enough, but we'll continue next weekend.

We still have lots of stuff to get done around here before we can consider the first floor "finished" but really is a home really ever "finished"?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Bending and posing....

My 'last' day of yoga was tonight. I say 'last' because I bought I one month unlimited pass that expires today.

Over the last month there have been lots of ups and downward dogs, and I have learned a lot along the way about the mental strength it takes to work into each pose and the strength to trust your body.

I never thought I would be standing on my head or being so close to doing a tripod.


In one month I have completed 12 classes. I did some sweat-inducing hip-hop yoga, some introductory all levels yoga, and a form of yoga focused on taking poses to the next level of stretch- Vinyasa.

I'm now much better at push-up than I previously was and I am addicted to doing headstands. I'm happy to repot I don't get too many stares at the regular gym.

So actually after all those positives, I don't think it will be my last yoga class!

Have you challenged yourself lately? What challenge would you like to take on???