Sunday Lovin!

Happy Sunday! I hope everyone had a great Saturday night! As you know, Keith and I saw The Blindside over the much debated Avatar! And the verdict: FABULOUS movie! I loved it! But I should tell you that I am a huge sucker for those feel good sports movies! It was totally right up my alley and I loved that it was a true story. Given my love for professional football I think it was a no brainer that I was going to like this. I thought Sandra Bullock was awesome and I hope she wins the Academy Award for her performance!! 🙂

Then we came home and watched the bronze medal hockey game between Finland and Slovakia. Keith is a big hockey fan. He used to play when we was younger and then he even coached a 12-year old league for a while. I am learning all the rules and speaking of feel good sports movies…I think I want to see Miracle next. When I mentioned it to Keith he told me that  movie is based on the story that inspired him to take up hockey as a kiddo! We also watched a bit of the Combine but we are both a bit unimpressed with the recruiting class (as a whole) this year. There are definitely some good individual prospects, but as a whole…eh…we aren’t too into this time around.

Of course we can’t watch all these good views without some good eats! I might have indulged with one of these that I stole off Keith’s Valentine’s Day candy card:

3 Musketeers Goodness

It was YUM and I didn’t share! haha!!

So I know all of you are wondering what my truth was from yesterday. It was #4! My Dad is a part-time actor and had a role in the movie Ms. Congeniality! Isn’t that a trip? Also a random fact…he used to be on the big airport billboard that said, “Welcome to Austin!” It was pretty funny!! But what can I say…I have a good-looking Dad!

Me and My Daddy!

I hope you enjoyed the game…I thought it was fun. And it was really interesting seeing what you guys thought was the truth!

What are your Sunday plans?

I have some laundry and a gold medal Canada/USA hockey game to watch! USA! USA! USA! And then closing ceremonies tonight. Should be fun! Enjoy the day everyone!

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Are You Calling Me A Liar?

So Pen nominated me for the Creative Writer Blogger Award! Which meant so much to me because I respect her greatly and her blog is one of my favorites!!  Once nominated for the Creative Writer Blogger Award, here is what you have to do:

1. Thank the person who gave this to you.
2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
3. Link to the person who nominated you.
4. Tell up to six outrageous lies about yourself, and at least one outrageous truth.
5. Nominate seven “Creative Writers” who might have fun coming up with outrageous lies.
6. Post links to the seven blogs you nominate.
7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs letting them know you nominated them.

OK…here are my 7 things.  Can you tell which one is the truth???

  1. I spent a semester in France on a study abroad program my Junior year in college
  2. I was a cheerleader in highschool
  3. I was in a local commercial when I was 4 years old
  4. My Dad is a part-time actor and had a role in the movie Ms. Congeniality
  5. Keith and I have a pet fish named Lucy
  6. I was in a Sorority in college
  7. I broke my arm falling off the monkey bars in 3rd grade

I feel like it is TOO hard to pick another 7 bloggers (and most of you have already gotten the award)…so consider yourselves ALL nominated and start playing!! 🙂

I will let you know tomorrow which one was the TRUTH!

I hope everyone is having a great start to your Saturday! Mine has been awesome so far! I ended my workout week with a 14 mile run in this glorious (no cloud in the sky…high will be 65 degrees today) weather! And now I am refueling on coffee, eggs and a ginormous bowl of oatbran. (seriously…that stuffs cooks up…but hey no complaints here!!) Later this afternoon Keith and I will be seeing the Blindside (so excited) and I will definitely let you know what I think!

Do you have any fun Saturday plans?

So here are songs that I have recently become obsessed with while running. (please don’t judge me by my running tunes!! haha!)

AND

Have a fun Saturday and don’t forget to play my game…how good of a liar am I??

Oh and check out Stef’s AWESOME give-a-way!! Or don’t because I REALLY want to win this one! haha!

Ask Me Friday!

Thanks to everyone who submitted anonymous questions via my new ASK ME! Page. I am going to be answering all the questions every Friday so keep them coming!!       

Question: What do you consider to be your most annoying habit?   

I would say my lack of self confidence. I tend to doubt myself A LOT! It completely surprises me when people say they are inspired by me or that they admire me. The first thing I think is, Why? I am just really bad about giving myself any credit and I tend to consider myself a failure if I am not “perfect”…I am working on it…with a lot of supportive help from the hubs.   

Question: Do you and Keith have any pets?   

We do! We have a very old dog named, Kodi. He is actually Keith’s dog and he is 14!!   

   

Question: How long have you and Keith been married?   

We will have been married 4 years on April 30th! I can’t believe it has been 4 years!! WOW! But I have enjoyed every minute of it! 🙂   

I just LOVED our wedding cake! I wish we still had some…although it would probably be quite freezer burned after 4 years!

   

Question: You reference your mom’s cooking a lot, do you have a favorite mom recipe?   

My mom is a GREAT cook! She has so many great dishes it is definitely hard to just choose one. Um…I guess if I HAD to pick I would chose her shrimp creole (although she does make a mean King Ranch Chicken). This past January we went to the beach and she made it for us! Isn’t is it pretty?   

   

Question: What is the one kitchen accessory you can’t live without?   

Ooh…I am going to go with my toaster oven. I know that sounds crazy but it is a lifesaver! I don’t use the microwave a whole lot and this is so much better for reheating things or cooking for just me and Keith. We have a Black and Decker
TRO651. (Picture below)   

Our Toaster Oven

 Question: What type of running shoes do you wear? Do you run and workout inthe same shoes?   

 I wear Kswiss. I like two different styles: the Kanejo and the K-Ona. The K-Ona are lighter and so I typically like those for my races and the Kanejo’s are typically what I use on my cross training days. Both are awesome! I do NOT wear the same shoes I run in to lift weights or do cross training. So I have like 4 or 5 pairs of shoes all the time. I have my Kswiss Kanejos for running and then another pair for cross-training and weight lifting. This extends the life of your shoes and I think it is important to keep your running shoes as truly running shoes…that way you can see the patterns of your foot strike and get a good idea of your stride pattern.   

K-Ona

Question: Here’s a question from some of the ladies in our body pump class. It seems as though all of us want to increase our weight during the squat track. However, it just adds more pressure on our back and we end up with a sore lower back. Not from the back track! Is there any postitioning tips you can give us? Our instructor just said not to use as much weight. But we all feel like the weight we are using is too easy. What do you or your husband think?   

When doing any kind of squat movement your stance and posture are the MOST IMPORTANT. I think you can add more weight as long as when you do you still maintain proper form and technique. Really focus on the following things:   

  • Keeping the  core tight and locked in. Always!
  • Sitting WAY back into the squat. Pretend you are sitting onto a chair that isn’t there. The more ridiculous it feels the more right it is! Really push that booty back!
  • Make sure your knees are at a 90 degree angle. You should always be able to see your toes. If you can’t then your knees are too far forward.
  • Push through the heels. You should be able to lift your toes in your shoes while squatting.
  • Control the squat descent and don’t just drop into it.

Hope these help…and keep me posted!   

Question: Do you always take a rest day? What are yours thoughts on overtraining? I want to push myself but am afraid of going to far…   

Yes! I always take Sundays completely 100% off. I sleep late, relax and eat! I have found that my body works really well with one day of complete rest. That doesn’t mean I don’t do anything…but I don’t do any form of traditional exercise. For me, Sundays are a natural rest day. But I have friends who take a rest day every 10th day and that works for them. Personally I think rest days are important and beneficial. I think once you find a pattern that works for you and your body you need to honor it and do what is best for you! My advice would be to experiment with different intervals. Some people need a rest day every 3 days, some every 6, some every 10…just play around with it and see what makes you feel the best and allows you to have optimal performance.   

Question: Two questions, do you do your long runs on the treadmill or only outside? Also do you ever workout with kettlebells?  

I do my long runs both places depending on 2 things: the weather and the time. First I need to say that I HAVE to do my run first thing in the morning. That is just how I roll. So, if the weather is pretty and I can run after it gets light out (around 6:30 – 7:00am) then I definitely prefer to be outside. But if the weather is gross and if I need to run early (like around 5:00 – 5:30am) then I stick to the treadmill. With that said I have never run longer than 14 miles on a treadmill. Anything longer than that…I just suck it up and go outside!  

As for kettlebells…yes I have done them and HOLY WOW they are a sick workout! Oh my gosh I have never been more sore than after a kettlebell workout. Keith is an awesome instructor and his classes are hardcore! Keith loves kettlebells so we have a set at the house and we take them with us on vacations…haha!  

Question: Do you do core work/abs? Everyday? What typically?  

I don’t do specific core work everyday but I do try to get in core workouts at least 2-3 times a week. But I also always try to engage my core when I am doing other things. When I run I keep my core pulled in, when I lift weights I make sure the abs are tight and alot times when I am working at my desk I will sit on a stability ball instead of a chair. This forces me to have good posture AND it engages the stomach and back muscles! When I do core work I do a lot of planks/hovers and more functional exercises with medicine balls versis traditional sit ups or crunches.  

Question: Do you strength-train?  

It is no secret that I HATE lifting weights but I know it is important. I have started doing Body Pump twice a week as a way to get my weight lifting in. Truthfully this is the only way I will do it. (Yes…even though my husband is a personal trainer and I am also certified…crazy I know! haha!)  

Question: What do you think of soy products? Seems like a lot of controversial research.  

I agree that there is a lot of controversial research regarding soy. But this is true for almost everything on the market (diary, organic foods, kombucha, teas, caffeine, etc…)  I treat soy like I treat everything else…everything in moderation. I don’t eat it all the time…maybe like 2 or 3 times a month. But honestly, I found that cutting out soy really helped with my digestion. About a year ago I was eating it like 2 or 3 times a week and once I cut back things go a lot more smoothly…shall we say! 🙂 So as a personal choice I don’t eat it a lot.  

Question: Two things – what taco shells did you use in last nights dinner and when and why did you choose to eat gluten free? 
 The taco shells are blue-corn shells from a company called Garden of Eatin and they are both gluten-free and organic.  

  

 As for going gluten-free. I do not have Celiac disease but I do think I have a gluten sensitivity. I do not have very good digestive system and I always noticed a slight bloat in my lower abs. So I removed gluten (about a year ago) and here is everything that got better almost immediately:  

  • My skin cleared up! I have never had acne but I always thought my skin was a little dull and after removing gluten my complextion brightened and I NEVER get pimples anymore!
  • I used to always get canker sores inside my mouth and I just thought it was normal. Since removing gluten I haven’t had them. Whenever I do go off the wagon and have a gluten-fest I will immediately get a canker sore.
  • I had lines (ridges) on my teeth and nails…remove gluten…ridges gone!
  • NO MORE LOWER AB BLOAT! AT ALL!
  • I have more regular bowl movements. This might be TMI but I used to only have a bowel movement about once a week and now I have 3 or 4. (still not great but getting better)

With that said, I am only about 90% gluten-free but it has changed my life! And now that America is becoming more health savvy there are a lot of gluten-free options and resturaunt menus now available!  

Question: What is your favorite run distance and have you always been this fast? 

Oh too sweet…I am blushing! My favorite distance is without a doubt the half marathon. I love it. To me, it is the perfect distance to really push yourself and also allows for some slight error. Meaning if you get stuck behind a slow pack, have a bad start or stop to grab water you still have time to make up lost time. As for my speed…I ran competitively in high school as a sprinter but didn’t have much endurance or long distance speed. That has taken a lot of training and work to get to where I am today. But I love it and sometimes wish I could afford a professional coach…just to see where that could lead me. But then I fear the “fun” of running would be lost. I don’t know…it is something Keith and I often talk about. 

Great questions this week! Thanks to everyone and keep them coming! With that, have a GREAT Friday night everyone!!

Sure, I’ll Take A Friday!

Holy cow…can you believe it is already Friday? I am shocked at how fast this week sped by! Goodness! This week was crazy (weather-wise) for me too. It started on Monday in the 70’s, by Wednesday it was snowing, and today we are back in the upper 60’s. Good lord…anyone want to move to Austin?! haha! 

Workout was awesome this morning. I am definitely sore from Body Pump (I apparently have  shoulder muscles!!) and from my 14 mile run from yesterday. So today was definitely a day for a lighter load. That lighter load was a 7 mile run followed by 25 minutes on the stairmaster. Side note: I ADORE the stairmaster! Anything that works my booty is a machine I heart! 

So dinner last night…TACOS! I simply put a package of frozen, boneless skinless chicken thighs in the crockpot with a jar of salsa (mango black bean salsa) and let it go on low all day long! The chicken literally shreds and makes the perfect filling for some taco goodness. Add some black beans…and you are good to go!! 

Who Doesn't Love Tacos??

So movie update! After some helpful comments from you guys yesterday and some MAJOR convincing the hubs has agreed to forgo Avatar on Saturday afternoon and instead has agreed to seeing The Blindside! I am SO excited about this selection and (um) grateful to not have to sit through a 3 hour movie! Because really that sounds AWFUL for a mover and shaker like myself! haha! 

I will be back this afternoon with my ASK ME! post…lots of great questions this week. You will really like it! Promise! 

Do you have any fun Friday night plans?  

Not us. We are typically not Friday night “go-outers” so we will be home watching the Olympics…hockey!! Woot Woot!

When I Grow Up…

Do you remember as a kid always being asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I overheard a trainer at the gym ask her client’s daughter that question today. The little girl looked at the trainer straight in the eye and said, “I want to be a cardiologist.” I was like WOW…I mean this child was probably 7 (maybe??) and she wants to be a cardiologist. I wonder if I even knew what a cardiologist was when I was 7. Way to go kid!

Thinking back I know my answer to that question changed a lot. I think I started out wanting to be a princess, graduating to an olympic athlete, to a teacher, to a coach, to writer and I am sure the list goes on and on. But I do remember very clearly wanting to be a teacher and a writer. But somehow in college I landed myself in the business school and graduated with my BBA in HR Management. Hum? So college ended in 2003 and let’s fast forward to today (2010) and I am a Nutrition Manager and a blogger. I would say that in some way I have fulfilled both of my grown-up jobs (even if I took the long way around to getting there) I teach people everyday how to change their lifestyles to be healthy AND sustainable. And everyday I get to write on my blog. Now ideally, I would love to branch into freelancing or writing steady for a publication but at least I feel like I am on the right track…finally! I can honestly say that I love my job and I love my professional life.

So here’s to you little girl…I hope that in 20 years if you still want to be a cardiologist then you will be well on your way!

What did you want to be when you grew up, and are you?

It’s a 2-a-day Thursday!

Good morning!!! Did you guys miss me last night…although I thought Keith did an awesome post! Those videos were fun to make! Aside from the obvious good kettlebell information…aint he cute?! haha! 🙂 Also I want to mention that I sell kettlebells out of my OpenSky store and so if you are thinking of getting a few this would be a GREAT way to do so! 🙂 

This morning has been super! It’s Thursday so I have my 2-a-day again. Which, by the way, I am LOVING! Body Pump is really a great class for me. It is easy for me to go to because I love it and I am always sore. Perfect! I ran 14 miles this morning and will hit body pump in a few hours. For some reason this week my body is wanting to go long versus doing intervals…so I am rolling with it! 

Me Post-Run! A Sweaty Mess!!

Right now I am drinking coffee and eating a yogurt mess! (1/2 cup Fage Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup peanut butter puffins, 1/2 cup Kamut Puffs, 1 tsp honey, 1 tsp flaxseed)  

Breakfast of Champions!

 

Dinner last night was pretty tasty too! We had seabass (love that fish) with lemon spinach couscous! YUM! (basically I made couscous and mixed it with sautéed spinach and lemon juice…easy peasy)  

Dinner yummies! This is Keith's lunch portion...hence the glass container! I forgot to snap the picture of our dinner plates! Oops!

 

Today I am having lunch with my rockstar friend, Rebecca! She is training for an Ironman Triathlon! We are meeting at Jimmy Johns! I love Jimmy Johns! I always get the Turkey Tom Un-Which (an unwich is where they replace the bread with a giant lettuce wrap) and it so good!! Meeting Rebecca today is easily what I am going to enjoy the most!  

What are you looking forward to most today?   

So the hubs wants to see Avatar at the IMAX theater this weekend. I gotta be honest…I am not really digging this idea! For some reason it just doesn’t interest me. But I do know that it is one of those movies you need to see in theater.  

So tell me, have you seen Avatar and is it worth it?

Work It Out Wednesday

Keith here guys! Today I want to talk Kettlebells! Have you seen these lurking around your gym lately?    

Kettlebells

Kettlebells have been around since the early 1700’s and started in Russia. Russians used these cannonball shaped weights to train their armed forces and their Olympians. Kettlebells made their debut in the United State in the early 1900’s especially after seeing the Russian success. Kettlebells have become more popular in recent years due to the resurgence of Russian Kettlebell Certification (RKC) training by Pavel Tsatsouline.    

Kettlebells can be used as a workout alone or substituted for dumbbells and barbells in traditional strength training workouts. To begin, just try adding in 1 or 2 movements into your already established strength circuit or using them as a cardio interval at the end of your circuit. Kettlebells force you to use your body’s momentum in a series of fast swings, jerks, and cleans. The core is always engaged and the workout is usually high repetition. This is ensures your strength training workout is also a cardio workout (second only to cross-country skiing in caloric burn according to recent studies) Kettlebell workouts have shown to be effective in burning fat, building muscle, and increasing strength and stamina. Sound like something you want to a part of? I would strongly suggest that if you are brand new to kettlebell you should meet with a trainer for the first few times to get comfortable with the movements and ensure proper form!    

The first basic kettlebell movement is called a Swing. It is the foundation for all other kettlebell movements. Here is how to do it:    

  • Step 1: Stand straight with your legs shoulder width apart.
  • Step 2: Lean forward at your waist slightly and bend your knees so as to go into a semi-squat. Keep your back arched and head facing forward steadily.
  • Step 3: Let you arms hang loosely and raise the weight with both hands over your head and inhale. Then, swing the weight with both hands in between the legs towards the back of you while exhaling. Move the kettlebell using power thrusts from the hip, thigh, and lower back muscles. A powerful hip snap on every rep is a must.
  • Step 4: Complete 5 to 10 sets of 20 to 50 reps of kettlebell swings with a minute pause between each set of repetitions. With heavier weights, inhale on the swing between your legs and exhale when you raise it above your head.

For a visual here is my YouTube video:    

    

Once you have mastered the Basic Swing there are 2 progressions that you can try:    

Progression 1: A Two-Arm Swing. Here you do the same movement but with 2 lighter kettlebells. Make sure you hold the handle in the center and really focus on balancing your weight on both side. Need a visual? Okay.    

    

Progression 2: Alternating One-Arm Swing. Here you are using one kettlebell and switching hands mid-air at the top of the trust. In my video I switch on every 5th repetition but you can switch on every one or every other one…it is entirely up to you.   

    

As always shoot me an email (via Kelly) or leave a comment if you have any questions and I will do my best to answer them for you! My last tip: REMEMBER TO BREATH! (exhale on the trust) See you next Wednesday!   

Challenge: Try the basic swing movements this week. Next week we will move on to cleans and jerks!