Daily Archives: November 25, 2009

On Fi-yah

Hello friends! Apparently a lot of you want me to make banana softserve and homemade larabars in my new food processor! I couldn’t agree more :) But first things first you guys, I’ve got to get my hummus on ;)

Well, I started today off like I start every Wednesday – Waffle Wednesday!!

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You know the drill…

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup egg whites
  • 1 tbsp ground flax
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • cinnamon

All blended up, with 1/3 cup frozen blueberries added, then into the Belgian waffle maker.

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Yummmm. I ate these with my hands :)

I decided to skip my usual morning snack and see if I could hold it out till lunch. Sometimes I feel like I have a snack just for the sake of having it, when I don’t really need it. Well, I made it to lunch, without eating my arm off. But I was quite hungry, and my lunch was too small.

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Tofu + tofu spread pita. Usually I have a side of veggies or fruit to go with my pitas, but I thought this would be enough. Skipping snacks, then going for lighter meals apparently doesn’t work (HUGE duh!!)

Ninety minutes later I broke and had a snack.

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Taste of Nature Argentina peanut plains bar. This is one of my new bar finds – and it’s Canadian!

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Ingredients are about as simple as you get: “peanuts, agave nectar, brown rice syrup.”

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I had high hopes for this bar. I mean, how is sugar and peanuts not good? But it was crunchy (not chewy) and almost like a brittle. Very plain tasting, needed some salt. Honestly, I think I’d just rather a handful of peanuts.

So lesson of the day is: I sometimes still suck at intuitive eating. But I didn’t die without a snack this morning. I made up for it by snacking all afternoon though because I was never satisfied from lunch. I guess, if my diet ain’t broke, why am I trying to fix it? :P

Then the highlight of my day came: I got to see the Olympic torch!!!!

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How cool is that!?!? Canada is hosting the Winter Olympics, so they’re bringing the torch through all the small cities as part of its international run. Chris and I caught the start of the run. It was so neat to see. This HUGE entourage of decked out vans (including one with dancers) pulled up. The first torchbearer waited nervously until they lit the torch and brought it out. Then she was off! They did a little tour around the city and had a big ceremony tonight that I purposely avoided (eeek, crowds).

After the brief excitement, Chris and I went across the street to Boston Pizza for some grub.

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Boston Pizza is definitely one of those scary chains that people warn you about. Hard to order healthy here, and the food isn’t that great to begin with.

Chris pulled a Garfield.

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I got the lemon baked salmon.

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BLECH. Ugh, I try not to be a food snob, but this salmon was majorly sub-par. Waaaay overcooked. You can tell it was just a frozen hunk that was thrown in the oven. The saving grace of this meal was the balsamic vinaigrette with sundried tomatoes on the side. So not worth my money.

But it didn’t matter, cause afterwards we went to go see New Moon and that was definitely worth my money! I liked it much better than the first. The acting was better, and well, I’m a Jacob fan. Edward just isn’t my type ;)

 

Python business… 

Lara mentioned that maybe I should talk about what workouts I’ve been doing to get my little muscle bumps on my arms. Honestly, I haven’t been doing much! I dedicate two workouts a week to weightlifting. One of those is full-body the other is upper-body + abs. My legs get so much work in with running, spinning and step class, that I really can’t do weighted squats and lunges more than once a week. Not just for the sake of my muscles, but my hips are really sensitive to it too.

Works out fine for me because upper body has been my focus lately! Back in my triathlon days I didn’t have much time for weight training on top of my six cardio workouts a week. But my shoulders started to look awesome with all the swimming I was doing! I actually haven’t swum since the triathlon itself, and when I didn’t pick up the weight training again right away (running and biking in the summer is just too much fun!) my newly sculpted shoulders started to disappear.

So. What exactly have I been doing? First off, I lift heavy. I usually do 2-4 sets of 8-12 reps at really challenging weights. Basically, I want my last rep to feel like I can’t push out any more. I know my weights are too low if my muscles don’t feel tired by the end, and too high if I can’t squeeze out more than two reps. I’m not entirely against low weights at high reps, as it’s good for increasing strength and endurance. But for straight up muscle building, I like the idea of heavy weights. A mix of the two is perfect!

I also really like to do alternating sets working two different muscles at a time. This allows for shorter rest times in between sets, and a better heart-pumping workout :) When I do my full-body work, I’ll alternate a lower-body and upper-body move for three sets, then move on to to another upper/lower combo. OR, I just do straight sets of compound moves that work both upper and lower at the same time. Squatting with a front grip on a barbell then pressing it over my head as I come up (front squat push press) is a perfect example of that.

I approach my upper body only days the same way. Except, I try to work opposite muscles in my alternating sets. It’s really easy to fatigue quickly when you’re working the same muscle in two consecutive sets. I also try to alternate pushing motions and pulling motions. A perfect example would be alternating sets of chest presses and lat pulldowns. Both work opposite muscles using opposite motions.

Of course, you don’t have to do two alternating sets. You can also do circuits of 3+ moves in a row repeatedly until, well, you’re blue in the face. But for the sake of not hogging all the equipment, I stick to two at a time.

If you’re not into the alternating thing, pyramid sets and drop sets are another great way to challenge your muscles which I addressed in this post.

And if you’re a complete newb and don’t know many lifting moves this page should keep you busy :) It’s all about getting in the weight room and trying things out! I’m a nerd, and I bring in notes and diagrams of any new exercises I want to try when I’m in there. Sometimes I get funny looks from people, but I’m never scared to ask for help if I need it :) Although, I gave a man a dirty look once for trying to help me adjust a bench. I don’t know why, but I do not appreciate chivalry in the weight room.

Aaaaand I’m off! Night night! :)

 

Question of the Day: What’s your least favourite restaurant chain? I really dislike Tim Hortons. They’re coffee tastes like grass water and their muffins are innocent looking cake bombs.

You’re invited…

TO THE GUN SHOW!!!!

gun show

Woo-pah!!!! Seriously, whose arm is this? Albeit, the flexing, lighting and flattering angle helps ;) My face is cut out because I’d just stumbled out of bed and it’s smeared in drool and yesterday’s mascara.

Now, I’m not one to go flaunting my body around town, especially on the internet. But, well, I’m kinda proud of my little muscle! You’ve probably heard me whine before that aaalllll my body fat goes to my stomach. So, in my head, my composition looks like this big round middle with skinny arms and legs poking out. I don’t really want to lose any more body fat to take care of the tummy situation (Chris may dump me if my boobs get any smaller :P ). BUT, I can work on making my arms and legs look a little more solid. Apparently, that work has so far been paying off :D

In other news I want to thankyouthankyouthankyou for the kind and congratulatory comments about my new job prospects. I am so lucky to have not only a supportive family behind me, but a slew of blog friends out there backing me up as well :) I’m a little apprehensive about announcing it to my wider circle of acquaintances, co-workers and old schoolmates. They all think I’m crazy for leaving a solid journalism job. For so long I’ve been told that I’m a good journalist. I think that’s why I stuck it out, because I was just following the praise. These people just assume I’d do what I’m good at, but being good at something is not enough.

Plus, as my mommy pointed out, not one person in my family works in the field of their undergraduate degree. The best example being my lovely sister Jane. She was a star psychology student, and gave it all up after graduation to pursue her passion for music. She’s now got two albums under her belt and living a life she loves making music in Quebec City (which you can listen to here!)

Minutes after registering for the personal training course yesterday, I got this in my inbox:

email

Is that a sign or what!? Totally unrelated too, the e-mail just popped up out of the blue. I can’t go though because I have to stay in Fredericton. Would have been nice to scope out what it’s like to work there.

 

So this morning, I tried out something that’s been a long time coming – eggs in a basket!

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Eggs + toast is my favourite breakfast, and I’d never tried it!

There was some dippage happening…

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It was fun :) Although, I think I still prefer the usual fried egg on top.

I had a date with the treadmill today, so I snacked on another new-to-me Larabar flavour for some sugar energy.

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Is there coconut oil in the American version too? I’m not opposed to coconut oil, from everything I’ve read it’s pretty good for you (in moderation, of course ;) )

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First, I found it was really mushy. If I buy this again, I’ll keep it in the fridge. It was good but if I had to choose, I like the cocoa coconut better. This is kinda plain, like just dates and coconut. I know that’s the point, but it was just missing a little sumthin’.

My “dreadmill” sesh was stellar today!

On a 1% incline:

2 minutes @ 3.0 mph
3 minutes @ 3.5 mph
5 minutes @ 5.8 mph
10 minutes of 1-minute intervals @ 5.8 mph & 6.2 mph
10 minutes of 1-minute intervals @ 6.0 mph & 6.4 mph
10 minutes of 1-minute intervals @ 6.2 mph & 6.6 mph
10 minutes of 1-minute intervals @ 6.4 mph & 6.8 mph
5 minutes @ 5.8 mph
3 minutes @ 3.5 mph
2 minutes @ 3.0 mph

The last time I did this workout, I found it to be a touch too easy, so this time I upped the speed a little – it was perfect! I never felt like I had to stop, but those last set of intervals were hard. And yay for getting faster!! Hope I can get those numbers to keep going up. Oh, and on my last 6.8 mph interval, the final chorus of “Don’t Stop Believing" from the Glee Soundtrack kicked in on my iPod. Yeah, it was epic.

Since I got home for a late lunch, and needed to do an early dinner before work tonight, I though it would be a perfect opportunity to test out a liquid lunch.

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  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/4 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 banana
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • 1 scoop Chocolate Amazing Meal
  • handful ice
     

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387 calories, 13g fat, 23g protein, 46g carbohydrates, 12g fibre. Not too shabby, right? I mean, that’s what any other meal looks like for me. I think I felt full-ish after drinking it. But within 90 minutes, I was feeling snacky and wanted something to chew. I thought the fibre in the Amazing Grass would save me, apparently not. This girl needs her food to be solid.

I was ravenous come supper time (at 4:30).

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More leftover chicken! Today I put it in a pita with blackberry jam, onions, spinach, sprouts and swiss cheese. Grilled to melty perfection. I’m running low on chicken. Need to roast more stat ;)

 

Eating and exercise aside, I had quite the surprise today. I saw the Canada Post lady walk to my back door this afternoon with a package. I always miss my packages, so I jumped up and met her at the door. I was hoping it would be my recent Amazon purchase or PT course materials. But I was handed a big unfamiliar box. When I ripped it open, I discovered this:

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A FOOD PROCESSOR!!!!! Holymolyasjbgeiuhsfskg. As soon as I saw the note from Janetha attached, I started crying. JB, this is one of the sweetest things anyone has done for me, thank you SO much!!!! You are such a wonderful person, I don’t even know where to start!

Regular readers know I’ve been vying for a food processor for a while, but I haven’t been able to bring myself to splurge on a nice one for myself.

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It’s the perfect size for making hummus! (and baby food as the box implies?) Janetha, I will get on the hummus making immediately so I have more recipes to share with you in thanks for the amazing gift :D

And with that, it’s super late and this granny needs to hit the hay.

 

Question of the Day: What should I make in my new food processor?

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