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Mini Bagel Bites – Homemade

In Uncategorized on February 20, 2012 at 9:07 pm
Found this great recipe for homemade mini deep dish pizzas. I thought, this is definitely a better alternative to store bought bagel bites and boy was I right. Taylor has the day off so I thought I’d try them for lunch. He said the sauce is better than most pizza sauces he has tasted, score! My favorite marinara sauce is Newman’s Own – Organic. So I used that as the base.
What you will need: 
3-4 whole wheat tortillas (or whatever you have)
1 can pizza sauce – Like I said, I used the Newman’s Own Marinara, and I didn’t use even close to 1 can. But I’m not a huge sauce person either. 
3/4 cup shredded mozz. cheese
Parmesan cheese (the original recipe says 1/4 cup, but I didn’t measure.)
Regular or turkey pepperonis (minis would be best) Or just cut a whole into 4 pieces. 
1 tsp. italian seasonings (or basil, oregano, etc…)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
Pinch or sweetener, I used organic sugar
Pinch of pepper
Of course you could add ham, veggies, anything you would normally eat on a pizza. 🙂
Use a cookie cutter to cut 12 circles from the tortillas.
Line a muffin tin with each tortilla. You have to push them down in there, some will pop out. This was the most frustrating part.

Pour pizza sauce in to mixing bowl.

Add parmesan.

And spices (including sugar)

Spoon sauce mix in to each tortilla.

Top with mozzarella. 

Then pepperonis.

Bake at 425 for about 12 minutes. Edges should be crispy and cheese melted.

Serving Size: 1 bagel, 66 calories. 
Original recipe found here.

February Tanning

In Uncategorized on February 16, 2012 at 8:10 am
In case you missed them on Facebook…
Working on our winter tans. 🙂

NAS Beach, looking at Point Loma.

Enjoying the sun!

Thankfully, Target had their beach toys already out. We bought a few.

Minimalist Running.

In Uncategorized on February 9, 2012 at 3:04 am
My adventure in to barefoot/minimalist running started about 2 months ago. I bought a pair of Merrell Pace Glove shoes, Shape Magazine awarded them ‘best trail shoe of 2011’. I read MANY reviews all being positive and ultimately went with the Merrell’s because both my husband and brother-in-law use them.
Here are my spiffy barefoot shoes. They have the Vibram sole and weigh a mere 4 ounces. They have a 0mm drop, truly minimalist. I fell in love. 
On a side note, I would recommend buying a more neutral colored shoe. Yes, I know this sounds vain, but these shoes just don’t go with any of my running gear. I look a little bit ridiculous. That is beside the point though, they are great shoes!
My first minimalist run was back in the beginning of December. I ran 1.5 miles and was instantly sore when I got back to my car. I had been warned, but I thought, I’m in decent shape, 1.5 miles is nothing. Well, I was wrong. I couldn’t walk straight for 3 full days, but I didn’t care. The minimalist shoe changed everything about running for me. I’m not trying to recommend barefoot running to everybody, it’s definitely a choice you have to make for yourself. At the end of the day, you have to wear whatever shoe helps YOU run your personal best. But if you are the least bit interested in running minimal, I would definitely encourage you to give it a try. Once the soreness was gone and I was able to build up my endurance in them, I really noticed how much time they took off my 5 and 8k pace. The farthest I’ve run is only 6 miles, but not one time have my feet hurt and the best part – no shin splints! 
The biggest reason I wanted to try minimalist running is because of shin splints. I had been to the Dr. about 3 different times over shin splints. For whatever reason, my shins always bruise and I’m in a lot of pain. My Dr., who just happened to be a marathoner as well, couldn’t figure out why I was having so much trouble. I went to a running speciality store in D.C. where they filmed me running and broke down my running style and assessed my gait/strike. But nothing that they suggested was helping. I didn’t run much after my 1/2 marathon last year because of the shin splints. 
After 2 months, I’ve yet to have a shin splint or bruised shins. I did end up twisting my ankle. But I honestly believed that was from a beach run, not really related to the shoes. So in my opinion, the barefoots are serving their purpose! I’m going to look in to buying a more true minimal ‘road/racing’ shoe, but I’ve been VERY happy with my Merrell Gloves. 
This is just my personal opinion and experience. Like I said before, minimalist running is not for everybody. With that said, I’m not sure I can ever put back on a regular running shoe. If for no other reason, they are so heavy now!
I will be running my second 1/2 marathon in just a few short weeks, excited to see how I feel about minimal running after adding some distance. Until then, happy running!

Kettlebells.

In Uncategorized on February 8, 2012 at 12:16 am
Can I just say, I LOVE kettlebells. I’ve been using them 2-3 times a week instead of traditional weights for almost a year now. They provide such an amazing core based workout. I wanted to give a review of the two workouts I’ve done using kettlebells.
First off, these are the kettlebell’s I own.
I started out with this 10lb Danskin kettlebell from Wal-Mart. It was around $16. Very reasonable price for a good product.
After a few weeks of using the 10lb bell, I had ‘outgrown’ it. So I looked into buying a kettlebell that was adjustable, because that just made more sense to me. So of course, I went with Jillian Michael’s kettlebell.
It’s adjustable up to 20lbs. Which trust me, is about all you will need. You will get an awesome workout using 15-20lbs. JM’s bell is a little clunky and noisy, but I’ve gotten used to it. It’s a little bit harder to do snatches with because it’s heavy duty. Where as the Danskin one is rubber on the outside. But my arms have adjusted to the JM one.
Now, I started out doing Jillian Michael’s Shred it With Weights. I still alternate between the two workouts.
Pros:
1. They are both awesome workouts.
2. She mixes intervals in with the kettlebell that keeps your HR up.
3. She drives home good form and practices it.
4. 30 minutes!! What???
5. She has modifications if you are new to kettlebells or fitness in general.
I don’t have many cons except, it does get a bit boring. Boring maybe, but the intensity never really dies. If I find myself getting bored, I add a weight plate. Or I’ll do both workouts back-to-back. Overall a great kettlebell DVD and it really helped me build a strong core which is essential to running.
Now, to help with the ‘boring’ factor I decided to try Bob Harpers Kettlebell Cardio Shred dvd.
 I main reason I’m doing this review is I didn’t read any before purchasing it and now wish I had. Don’t get me wrong, it can still be a killer workout and in fact is. I had to remove a weight plate while doing it this morning. My gripe is his form along with the other trainer. There were a few times I thought she was going to hurt herself slinging the kettlebell around. There were a few moves that were just hard to keep correct form because of the sequence of moves. The windmill comes to mind. I really liked how he would build on moves. Like starting out with a basic squat, to adding the bell to make it front loaded, then adding the upright row at the end. Really gets your HR up there. But when there are so many moves that your form starts slacking, I have a problem with that. So I would say, unless you really know good form, stay away from this DVD. 
So there is my review, take it for what’s it worth. 🙂 Don’t let kettlebells scare you, they are amazing and torch calories. I absolutely love them!

Lemon Protein Slush

In Uncategorized on February 6, 2012 at 6:48 pm
I’ve made this delicious Lemon Protein slushie type drink for breakfast about 3 times this past week! ha ha. I’m addicted to it! It’s great with any meal, I just usually drink it in the mornings. 
I’ve yet to figure out why it foams so much at first, but it does go away. 
What you need:
1 Lemon
1/2 Lime – optional.
Crystal Light ‘Pure’ lemonade drink packets. – I use the ‘Pure’ because it’s sweetened with Stevia and not aspartame. 
1 scoop vanilla whey protein
8-10 ounces of water
10-12 ice cubes.
(Depending on how big your blender is.)
Blend, but leave ice a little chunky.
This makes about 2 cups for me. So I just refrigerate the rest for later.

Breakfast is served!

Trader Joe’s Top 10

In Uncategorized on February 6, 2012 at 6:42 pm
10 reasons I love Trader Joe’s and what I always buy from there. I’m not going to include produce, because I buy ALL our produce from TJ’s. IMO, they have the best selection. Everything from potatoes, spinach/lettuce, apple slices, grapes, bananas, strawberries, blueberries – it’s all good!
#1. Whey Protein. The best tasting whey I’ve found. I mix this in just about everything! ha ha. I need to add chocolate to  my collection.

#2. These awesome chicken burgers. I know, it sounds gross, but they are really good.

And seriously 150 calories and 19g of protein? And look how short the ingredient list is. Definitely give these a shot!

#3. Chicken breasts. I buy the individual packaged ones because they just suit my family better.  Usually about 5-6 in a bag.

#4. WW Flour.

#5. Rolled oats.

#6. They have delicious peanut butter! It reminds me of growing up, you still have to stir it and keep it refrigerated. My mom used to buy similar.

#7. My two favorite “protein/energy” bars. Both are clean, especially the Larabar. It’s base ingredient are dates. The power crunch bars are yummy with on average about 14g of protein per bar. And they aren’t loaded down with sugar either. TJ’s has the best prices on them, that’s why I buy them there.

#8 Olive Oil spray.

#9. Butter – unsalted.

#10. TJ’s deli turkey meat.

Other honorable mentions are their condiments and juices. They also have great tortillas! Now as far as meat, I’ve started buying that from a little market on Coronado. All their beef is grassfed and it tastes really good.  

Chicken lettuce wrap.

In Uncategorized on February 6, 2012 at 4:00 am
Pinterest is giving me ALL kinds of new recipe ideas. I’ve probably found 9-10 new recipes that we love. I was researching some chicken lettuce wraps and ran across this one. BTW, that blog has lots of great recipe and fitness ideas. I changed mine up a little bit because I don’t like onions. So if you want the “full” recipe, check hers out. She has lots of nice pictures as well!
On to the recipe…
1lb chicken breast (I only used two breasts)
salt & pepper, a dash of each
2 garlic cloves, minced
1in. nob ginger, peeled & minced
1 tbsp olive oil
2 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tbsp water
1 tbsp natural peanut butter
1/2 tbsp honey
1 tbsp rice vinegar
1/2 of 8oz. can water chestnuts, chopped up
1/4 cup peanuts
Lettuce leaves, rinsed and patted dry
Heat in large skillet on high, add chicken, salt, & pepper. Cook until chicken is almost done. Add in minced garlic and ginger. Continue cooking until chicken is cooked through.
In microwave safe bowl mix olive oil, s.sauce, water, PB, honey, vinegar, and another dash of pepper. Microwave for 20 seconds, stir well, pour over chicken. 
Add water chestnuts and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts and serve with lettuce. I also made some rice to put in the wraps as well. 
Tips* Don’t leave out water chestnuts or peanut butter!

Lemon and Limes?

In Uncategorized on February 2, 2012 at 8:10 pm
A few days ago I found a yummy looking recipe for a Lemon Protein smoothie, Taylor and I both thought that sounded delicious. Doesn’t that make you long for summer days? Anyways, unless cooking, I never really eat or use lemons. So of course I was intrigued and thought I would look up the health benefits of eating/drinking lemon and lime juice. And I’m really glad I did!

*Disclaimer: I am in no way a health expert, just trying to be more health minded. My “in-deapth” research consisted of about a 10 minute google search. I’ll list my links below… ;).


Health benefits of lemons.
1. Being a citric acid fruit, it helps fight infections. 
2. It also is an antioxidant.
3. It lowers blood pressure while increasing good cholesterol. 
4. It helps with everything from acne, dry skin, wrinkles, and prevents common cold.
5. Marinate seafood with lemon juice to kill bacteria.
6. Contains Vitamin A & C.
Pretty much any nasty function our body has, ie constipation, phelgm, bile, vomiting – it helps prevent all that. 
I also found it very interesting that lemon juice has been found to kill bacteria of malaria and other deadly diseases.
Health benefits of Limes.
Like the lemon, limes are another citric acid fruit. They also help with weight loss, constipation, eye care,  & good digestion. Among MANY other things.
1. Helps cure dandruff, bruises, & rashes. So maybe consider taking a lime juice bath every now and then…I know I will.
2. Scratching the peel of a lime and inhaling has been known to give immediate relief of congestion and nausea.
3. The citric acid found in limes is a great fat burner and it’s natural!
4. Can help bring down fevers. 
Just a few that I found really interesting. I think I will start adding more lemons to my water.
I used these articles as reference:

Fitbook

In Uncategorized on February 1, 2012 at 10:43 pm
Need help keeping track of fitness and nutrition? This fitbook, which is available at Target, is amazing! It breaks up your goals in to 12 week increments. I’ve been filling mine out all afternoon. Go grab one for yourself!

Peanut Butter Protein cookies

In Uncategorized on January 31, 2012 at 11:54 pm
Sharing another recipe I found (here) for Peanut Butter Protein cookies. If you can’t tell by my recent posts, I’m trying to incorporate more protein in my diet. Mainly trying to make my breakfasts and snacks more protein packed. I’m finding myself snacking ALL the time and I HATE it. So I’m taking this as a sign to up my water intake and make better snack choices.
I firmly believe “sweets” in moderation are o.k. I lost 60 lbs, but never once cut out sugar (except soda).
I was VERY excited to stumble across this recipe. They are pretty tasty and clean!
Ingredients:
1 Egg 
1/2 sugar substitute. – *I actually used raw sugar and only a 1/3 cup.
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup natural peanut butter – *I didn’t use quite a cup.
1/2 cup vanilla whey protein
Mix egg, sugar, & extract together. Stir in peanut butter then slowly add protein. The protein really thickens it up, so add it slowly!

These are really filling. I felt ‘full’ after 1 small cookie. I got about 14 cookies total. Enjoy! 🙂