learning to eat, cook, and live healthier one day at a time.

Monthly Archives: August 2012

In the past couple days I’ve been brainstorming what the next steps are in order to get this blog rolling. I realized that although I gave an extensive history of my eating habits in my “About” page, I failed to include what my diet consists of today! This blog is supposed to be all about healthy recipes and fitness, and I didn’t even mention my current nutrition and fitness regimen.

What the heck? Clearly this is a learning process.

Diet and Nutrition

I tend to stick to a low-carb, high protein diet. I know low-carb isn’t for everyone, but it definitely works for me. Now, I’m no extremist. Sandwiches are the best things in the world, and I need to indulge in a big meaty sub every so often. However, in my day-to-day diet I do eat pretty low-carb. I love eating meals that are rich in lean proteins and lots of veggies. Chicken, turkey, fish, and lean beef are staples in my diet, as well as egg whites, and low fat cheeses. So, if you’re a grain-loving vegetarian this may not be the best place to look for recipe ideas.

Here are examples of my every day meals. Some of which I make quite frequently, and some one time experiments.

Low-carb chicken and spinach baked pasta

Ingredients: chicken breast, carba nada fettuccine noodles, frozen chopped spinach, fat free cream cheese, fat free shredded mozzarella, marinara sauce, garlic

Crock pot BBQ Pulled Chicken

Ingredients: chicken breast, ketchup, brown sugar, cider or red wine vinegar, BBQ sauce, yellow onion, garlic powder, water

chicken, spinach, sweet potato, and black bean dinner hash

Ingredients: ground chicken or turkey, frozen or fresh chopped spinach, sweet potato, low sodium black beans, garlic and onion powder

Low-carb breakfast quesadillas

Ingredients: Tumaro’s low carb wrap, egg whites or eggs, fat free shredded cheddar cheese, green bell pepper, hot sauce, salsa, plain low fat greek yogurt or sour cream

Flax paleo “oatmeal”

Ingredients: ground flax, egg whites, almond milk, mashed banana, cinnamon, vanilla whey protein, berries, nut butter, or topping of choice

Low-carb, sugar free chocolate zucchini bread

Ingredients: zucchini, egg beaters or eggs, coconut flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, splenda or sweetener of choice,  chocolate PB2 or other nut butter, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, vanilla extract, salt

protein packed, low-carb blueberry mini muffins

Ingredients: Vanilla whey protein, low-fat cottage cheese, oats, vanilla muscle milk or almond milk, egg whites, baking powder, vanilla extract, fresh or frozen blueberries

Low-carb tortilla pizza

Ingredient: Tumaro’s low-carb wrap, tomato paste, tomato sauce, fat free shredded cheddar and mozzarella, fresh spinach, red onion, ground turkey, any toppings of choice

And there you have it!

Fitness 

My workout regimen is a mix of traditional and experimental. I am the type of girl who enjoys good, old fashioned weight lifting and cardio. However, this can get old very quickly. I am a big fan of circuits, drop-sets, and super-sets. I believe that lifting heavier weight is more beneficial than lifting light weight for a greater amount of repetitions. I weight train anywhere from 4-6 times per week, splitting up the days by muscle group (legs, chest, back, shoulders, biceps, triceps, abs).

In addition to weight training, I incorporate cardiovascular exercise into my workouts at least 4 times per week. I am a strong believer in HIIT (high intensity interval training). This means that I go from extremely low intensity to very high intensity. I usually do this on the treadmill. For example, I will walk at 3.5 MPH for 1 minute, and then immediately sprint at 9.0 for 1.5-2 minutes. I will repeat this for 20-30 minutes.

I also enjoy going for outdoor runs at least once a week. I run at a steady pace when running outdoors, and usually shoot for at least 3 miles. I do not normally time myself on my outdoor runs.

There you have it. A very brief overview of my day-to-day nutrition and fitness routines. I will definitely be posting the recipes in greater depth as this blog progresses. Believe me, you ain’t seen NOTHIN’ yet!


So, I know this blog is supposed to be about food, fitness, and all that jazz. But check that bad boy out. Spotted this little ‘bugger’ at Trebes Park today. This picture doesn’t even do him justice. That’s Chicago for ya! Full of nature right?…right?

On a more important note, this is my second day posting! Wahoo! Today’s menu was full of goodies. The day started off with a bang when I whipped up this protein-packed smoothie bowl for breakfast:

That’s right, I needed a spoon it was so thick! I tossed the following into the blender:

  • 2 liquid egg whites (about 1/3 cup)
  • 1/2 of a frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup of frozen spinach
  • 1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
  • 1 Tbls PB2
  • handful of strawberries
  • 4 ice cubes
  • pinch of Splenda
  • few Tbls of water to get it moving

YUM! I’d say this was definitely the food highlight of my day. Everything else was pretty mediocre apart from the chocolate chunk cookies I treated myself with at work! Oh, and my awesome Cheesy Chicken and Veggie Casserole leftovers for dinner!

I polished dinner off with my new favorite dessert treat:

Dark Chocolate-Covered Almonds, thanks to my boyfriend’s mom! They’re so dang addicting.

Time to get serious. Work consumed my life today. Pouring rain caused me to skip the run I had planned for this morning. All day I debated whether or not I should use today as my “off day” for workouts this week. This thought crosses my mind probably five out of the seven days of the week, every week. It’s a miracle that I usually only take one day off from the gym per week.

Whenever sitting on my couch watching Four Weddings sounds like a better idea than getting my butt to the gym, I think about a quote I once read:

I’ve never regretted my decision to workout, as opposed to not.

So simple, yet so true. I know I will always regret skipping my planned workout, but I have never felt guilty or regretful about getting up and working out.

After weighing the pros and cons of using today as my off day, the cons outweighed the pros, and I made the decision to go for a night run. It wasn’t the best workout by any means. I was approached by a drunk homeless man and nearly attacked by a dog the size of my foot. But gosh darnit it felt good to get movin’!

That’s all I have for tonight. The season finale of True Blood was on last night and I have been dying to watch it all day! Off I go!


I don’t know if it’s because Fall is creeping up on me, but I have been on such a casserole kick lately. My style of casserole is a little different from the traditional pasta-based types. But that doesn’t mean it’s any less delicious!

I decided to try out some fat free cream cheese the last time I was at the grocery store, and it has been the star of my dinners the past couple nights. Tonight was no exception. After getting several ideas from Pinterest, I felt confident enough to start whipping up my own concoction. I’ll call it Cheesy Chicken and Veggie Casserole.

Ingredients: 

  • 8oz shredded cooked chicken breast
  • 2 cups petite broccoli florets
  • 2 cups cauliflower florets
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 4 Tbls fat free cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tbls fat free shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 Tbls olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Heat olive oil in a large skillet
  • Add onion and cook until onions begin to brown slightly
  • Mix in broccoli, cauliflower, and shredded chicken
  • Spoon in cream cheese and 1/2 cup shredded cheddar. Mix well!
  • Spread into any smaller baking dish, such as an 8 in. square dish
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes

Check out all that cheesy goodness!

 

This recipe makes 2 servings. Which means leftovers! Geez louise I love casserole!


Well, here we go!

I’ve been talking about starting a blog for a while now. Since I have a whole week and a half before Fall quarter starts, why not now?

There’s not a whole lot going on right now. I did spend a good amount of time on the “About” page earlier today. Hopefully I’ll have this thing up and running at a near professional level in the next couple weeks.

Stay tuned!



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