Weekend Recap and Food Pics

Hello to Monday!

I finally have some food pictures to share- I’ve been so bad about that lately. Let’s start with last night’s veggie heavy dinner.

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This dinner included a huge greek salad, grilled peppers, mushrooms, and zucchini, asparagus, and a delicious piece of salmon that I drizzled with barbecue mustard. Yum!

Now to today’s breakfast!

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My favorite scrambled egg/egg whites with cheese, berries, and waffles. I stopped at Target yesterday to buy myself some new sheets- excellent choice!- and couldn’t help but browse the food department. I found two new pancake/waffle mixes. I’ve had the Kodiak Cake brand before, all-natural and whole grain, but they now have protein-packed versions and I couldn’t help but buy both the buttermilk and the peanut butter variety. I went with buttermilk this morning and was not disappointed!

Yesterday, I found myself on a bit of a shopping spree, buying a few shirts and a cute jacket for the summer at the Loft and my new sheets and an organizer for work at Target. In addition to the mixes, I found my favorite protein bar flavors. Yay!

After, it was time to play some softball! I was feeling a little rusty, but I wasn’t a complete failure. The rain made things a bit on the unpleasant side because it was cold.

Going back to Saturday, I did very little more than sit on the couch for the evening, watching the Red Sox whoop the Yankees. Before that, I did earn my rest with a full morning of training and then a beautiful run outside. I’ve been lifting heavier this week and my limbs are starting to feel it. It pretty much wasn’t my fault that I was couch-ridden on Saturday because I was S-O-R-E, but in the best way. DOMS are real, man. Thanks to increasing my intensity, I actually am cutting down to only five official workouts a week. One day is mostly rest, but the last day will be active rest, like softball, Yoga, hiking, etc. Since we’re now in May, I think it’s the perfect time for it! I also really need to give my body a chance to recover from the strain!

Let’s all have a great week!

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Birthdays and Leg Days

I want to start off with a Happy Birthday message to my Auntie Bea! We had a party to celebrate a few months ago and another small one this past weekend because when you are as great as her, you deserve a whole year of celebrations!

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Do you know what’s really fun? The day after Leg Day, when you can barely hobble out of bed and down the stairs. Fortunately, I’m always hungry in the morning, so the call for eggs was too strong for me to ignore.

Let’s take a look at that workout.

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In total, it took about an hour and twenty minutes to get through it all. So yeah, I’m sore, but it was a kickass workout!

On the workout menu today is a run that will have to be taken to the treadmill thanks to the rain and griminess outside. It might sound crazy, but running is actually a great way to stretch out those legs!

Happy Wednesday!

 

Lately and Onward

Hi, everyone! I’ve been on the DL lately thanks to all the studying I’ve been doing. As I mentioned, it’s crunch time and I’m following a strict plan I’ve laid out for myself. The good news, I’m not just flipping through, but clarifying points I was confused on and I feel like I’m making actual progress. Here we go!

Things of late, we have mostly breakfasts.

Scrambled eggs, waffles, fruit. I think I actually might be off my waffle kick now.

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Fancy pancakes. I tried to do a design, but then I plopped the pancakes down on top of it and the fruit smeared.

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More scrambled eggs, fruit, and toast.

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Exercise-wise, I’ve done my usual strength training with bouts of cardio. Monday included triceps, chest, legs, and core with a few intervals on the bike thanks to a sore hamstring/glute. Thanks to the foam roller, or self-myofascial release if you want to be technical, it’s been feeling a lot better. Tuesday was biceps, shoulders, back, and core followed up with a sweaty walk/run/sprint cardio session on the treadmill that stretched out my sore spots. Stair climbing was really the pain-riddled issue. Wednesday was a rest day so that things could return to normal.

I leave you all with this link to my cousin Erin’s blog: https://queenbucks.wordpress.com.

One of us writes about food and exercise and the other is all about fashion and beauty. I’ll let you guess which is which.

I even dressed myself.

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(Reminder: this is from yesterday when I was in serious study mode and had no reason to leave the house until work much later on and in a completely different outfit. Don’t judge me!)

#CarTroubles

Yeah, I just hash-tagged in my title. It’s what the cool kids do, which I’m clearly not. As you can probably guess, I am, however, having some car troubles. It appears the issue is my battery, which is in the process of being fixed. That’s fine now, but when I was trying to pick up my neighbor from school yesterday, it would have been nice if the car would start. Or, you know, when it seemed to be fixed and I was trying to get to work and it stopped again. That was a fun little moment of panic.

We’re moving forwards, or well, backwards since we’re talking about yesterday’s meals now…

For lunch, I had more chickpea curry. I was very cautious to snap a better picture this time so you could see what the fuss was about. Yum!

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Grilled salmon, brown rice, spinach, and squash was just what I needed on a cold, rainy evening. I drizzled some honey barbecue mustard on top for a boost of flavor.

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Breakfast came in two parts, thanks to the aforementioned car troubles and having to be up super early to get my mom to work, so I could use her car. Part one: egg, ham, and cheese on an english muffin with more sweet berries!

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Part two post-workout: granola-topped Greek yogurt and a banana.

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While writing this, I enjoyed another lunch of chickpea curry, this time with some leftover rice and half a piece of naan. I stirred it up a bit before taking the picture so you could see all the colors and flavors of the dish. I also ended up steaming so extra spinach to add some extra nutrients.

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Onto workouts! I’m nursing some sore gluteus maximus muscles today thanks to a killer legs/butt circuit yesterday. I also worked my biceps, chest, and core which were great, but my leg workout was intense. I superset the squat press with split squats and followed it up with a superset of the leg press and jumping lunges. The split squats and jumping lunges are probably the culprit of said sore muscles. Whew!

Back at it again this morning- I love morning workouts when I can get myself out of bed!- to focus on my triceps, shoulders, back, and more core. After those circuits, I did a plyometrics circuit for my cardio and I somehow talked myself into incorporating burpees. I’m all high and mighty planning the workouts, but when it comes time to doing it, I question everything I believe in. For the record, I do the workout (unless I’m in excruciating pain) because I am no quitter!

My body is very happy to hear it will be resting tomorrow for an off-day, though it won’t say no to a walk at some point to stretch out those muscles!

It’s (she’s?) been happy because I cut my workouts down to about an hour and I am reaping the benefits! Maybe it’s because I reinvented what I’ve been doing and am not spending so much time exercising, but I’ve been stronger, more excited, and healthier. Too little and too much of something is never good. Get out there and move!

It’s A Mental Thing

After a weekend of massive indulgences, my body was ready to return to its normal way of living. I prefer what I can make myself most of the time anyways.

I am loving scrambled eggs these days. I make them with one whole egg and a few egg whites with a pat of butter and salt and pepper. Seriously, so good, especially with some cheese sprinkled on top. Since my sort-of waffle fail at that diner, I had a hankering for the eggos ones I love- I know, it’s a weakness. But nothing was sweeter than these fresh berries.

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I was excited the other day in the grocery store when I saw they carried my favorite brand of veggie burgers! I don’t need to replace the meat when I am craving a burger, but these are great over a salad, which is what I’ve been eating for lunch the past two days. Sweet baby lettuce, carrots, tomato, cucumber, and red bell pepper topped with feta, sesame ginger dressing, and a black bean burger = yum!

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I made a stir fry of sorts for dinner. Usually I go for whole grain pasta, but we were out of that and brown rice so I had to make do! With grilled chicken, I stir fried asparagus, spinach, mushrooms, and pepper and topped it with hot sauce and a sprinkling of cheese.

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On this rainy morning, there was nothing but pancakes on my mind when I woke up to the pitter-patter against my window. These were especially special because I had been out of my favorite Dark Chocolate Dreams for over a week now.

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As I enter my 26th year, I’ve been reflecting on how to improve and seek happiness. That being said, I am already incredibly happy and lucky, but there are always things I can be working on. One thing that stands out is my relationship to exercise. In a lot of ways, I use exercise as a crutch, whether it’s to mentally depend on working out as an escape, a cure to my anxiety, or to make sure that I will never regress to where I was four years ago. It also fuels and energizes me, making me feel strong. Thing is, I’ve been overtraining and I don’t think my body is taking to it the way I used to. For the next couple of weeks, I am going to keep my training time to an hour to an hour and fifteen minutes a day, rather than the excessive hour and a half/two hours I’ve been doing. It seems silly when I write it down like that now.

It’s important to remember (and I’m telling myself more so than you), that while movement is so important, healthy living is about balance, and I have to realize that I have those lessons ingrained in me now.

My first workout of the week included a couple of circuits with my sister that I mentioned in yesterday’s post. I followed that up on Tuesday with a strength training circuit of lateral raises, tricep pushbacks, rows, pull downs, and kettle bell swings. My second circuit was core heavy- rotational lunges, elbow to knee ups, bicycle crunches, and v ups. To finish for the day, I hopped in the pool for a half hour swim. Guess what, I still felt like I fit in a great workout and reaped those benefits, all by keeping the time to an hour. Progress!

I’m Onto You, Suzanne Summers

I had a dream two nights ago that Suzanne Summers was stalking me, so you better believe I’ve been checking over my shoulder whenever I leave the house. We were cool Ms. Summers, don’t pull a Liza on me.* In the dream, we were participating in a Hunger Games-esque event, except it had nothing to do with death. If I remember correctly, then if Suzanne “tagged” me, then I had to go live outside in nature. This all seemed very plausible in my dream, but now makes no sense at all.

*If you forgot that Liza Minelli stalks me, then lucky you. It’s a thing. I’m sure I’ve written posts about it before. She’s remained stagnant as of late. Let’s not jinx that.

Anyways….is anyone else slightly alarmed that it’s already October 21? I’m sorry, but I thought it was still July of 2012. Time is flying! I better step up my studying because my test date is approaching.

Here are some eats from the past few days we’ve been away from each other.

Scenes from my dad’s birthday dinner Act I. Act II actually doesn’t have a picture, but my family went out and it was fun, happy, and delicious.

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A very interesting looking meal with waffles, scrambled eggs with a chicken sausage, and a big bowl of berries. My breakfasts are often big meals because they fuel me for my workouts and because it’s the best meal of the day.

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This stir fry was impressive. Steak, zucchini, peppers, mushrooms, and spinach over rice with ginger sesame dressing drizzled on top.

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Peanut butter toast can do no wrong.

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Grilled tilapia, broccoli, zucchini, peppers, and rotini. Yum!

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This morning’s plate of cakes. I can’t get enough of these!

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Workouts the past few days included grueling strength training sessions, lap swims, spin classes, long runs (slightly painful thanks to new shoes which I’ll debut tomorrow!), and core workouts that left me with sore abs whenever I sneeze (I sneeze a lot, ouch!).

In other news, I hung out with my family a lot this weekend which is always good for laughs and fun, enjoyed the nice weather with a few walks outside, cleaned and prepared for fall/winter (still more to do, ugh!), worked (it’s a blessing to love what I do), and lost a few years of my life trying to buy Star Wars tickets. For whatever reason, they are starting to premiere the new film BEFORE midnight, so my friend Stephanie and I have our tickets for 11:50. We like to stick to the idea of premiering a  movie at midnight, but in this situation, beggars really can’t be choosers. It is very exciting though and we are now two months away!

I can’t get over this picture:

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I also bought another decal for my computer. I like the subtlety of my Harry Potter one that fits right over the apple on the Mac, and I thought I was continuing this trend when I bought this new one. Not so much. It’s huge! I had to cut it.

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I think my nerd is showing just a bit.

Also, my coffee mug looks super creepy in that picture and it was unintentional!

Happy Wednesday!

Some Thoughts

Sometimes I feel like I have so much to say and don’t know how to say it. Other times, I have nothing to say and I still don’t know how to say it. I have not been a good blogger of late, but my fingers are itching to type and my mind is itching to expel some sort of nonsense into meaning.

It’s officially summertime. Warm, humid, buggy. The sun is shining. The air is fresh. There is so much to look forward to and so much that frightens me, but it’s all exciting in its own right. In time, maybe that last statement will make sense.

On my run today, my legs were aching. I’ve felt a little uninspired by my workouts lately, which I fixed with an updated exercise plan that I’m excited to use, but today it was soreness plain and simple. It was hot, but not in an uncomfortable way and things started out well enough. I knew it was going to be a struggle when my legs were shot running downhill. I allowed myself to walk when I needed and to run when I could. I completed five miles overall, probably 70-30 running-walking and I felt my strongest near the end. Had the pain been unbearable or damaging, I would have stopped, but I think it was more that I needed to stretch out my legs. I started my workout with some Yoga and core action and the first day of my squat challenge, which shouldn’t have left me so sore.

When I got home, I fixed myself a salad with leftover chicken and the rest of the macaroni and cheese on the side, while I played another episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I am seriously obsessed. It got to the point where I needed a shower desperately and once I finished, I planned to hole myself up in my air conditioned room to do some writing, particularly a special speech I will be making very soon. Too soon for comfort. This speech happens to be the one I’ll be making at my sister and her fiancee’s wedding and because it is one of the most important things I’ll write/say, it’s proving to be difficult. When you try too hard to be poignant and poetic, it’s turns out cliche and crappy.

I’m working on it.

I’ve been feeling a bit nostalgic of late in a lot of ways. Before I opened up this document, I found a binder of all of these pictures my former kindergarten students made for me and it made me miss them and sad that they are no longer a prevalent part of my life, nor am I in their’s. I mean, they are going to be third graders, which just seems impossible. Next to it, I found a binder full of old papers and stories I wrote in college and my senior year of high school. I don’t miss high school so much and as much as I loved college, I was definitely ready to be done when I graduated, but it’s that realization that those times existed and you can never return to them. Everything is always romanticized once it’s in the past, but there has to be some merit to that feeling.

I know I need to make more of an effort to blog. Despite my best efforts, I am a creature of habit, and I feel like these past few weeks have been passing in a bit of a fog. I’m not so much in a funk as I’m feeling overwhelmed and things like blogging fall to the wayside. I also have felt uninspired by posting just what I’ve been eating and what exercises I’ve been doing and so I stopped. We live in a world where it’s too easy to share your opinion, but difficult to find the best words to express it.

I guess the best way to describe my mantra of these next few weeks/months/lifetime, is not to forget that while you’re living your life, appreciate the things that are currently happening. I find myself clinging onto the past and thinking about the future. I don’t want to be blurred.

Tomorrow is a new day, but I still have today to claim. <Poetic and poignant or cliche and crappy?>