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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.

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