Monday, September 22, 2008

Here is what I'm having for lunch!

Flipping through my Everyday with Rachael Ray magazine I came a across a recipe for French Onion soup. Only 5 ingredients....well almost. I think I will cut the recipe in half since I'm not sure if leftovers would be good.
1 large onion(good for you)
1/2 cup dry red wine(good for the heart)
14.5 oz beef broth(low cal and low fat)
1 cup croutons(splurge...but I'm sure you could find a healthy version)
2 slices swiss cheese(I bought some that we're 60 calories a slice)

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat.

Add onions and cook about 15 minutes. Then add wine and bring to a boil. Add beef broth, and turn heat to low then simmer for 10 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Divide into two bowls top each with 1/2 cup croutons and 1 slice of cheese. Place bowls on baking sheet and place under broiler approx 1 minute.

I'm off to the kitchen. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I'm not broken!

Today I finally got in to see the Dr. for a follow-up about my foot/ankle. I have been experiencing pain, numbness, and tingling in my foot since oh about April or May....I'm not really sure. I was told it was a sprain, but I've sprained my ankle before and it didn't quite feel like this.
The diagnosis today was that I have inflamed ligaments and possibly a pinched nerve(I'm pretty sure it's a pinched nerve). At least since I got the x-ray and don't have a fracture or break my chiropractor can adjust it now. I'm hoping that can help with the nerve! I'm also going to try acupuncture here pretty soon for this and a few other reasons too. I'll write more about that once I experience the needles...yikes! Actually they are really tiny I saw one the other day and I've heard great things about acupuncture.
So I am suppose to rest my foot(that is the hardest part) and take anti-inflammatories. I will admit that I was stressing about getting this looked at. What if it was fractured? I wouldn't' be able to workout..........oh my gosh! I might gain weight! I was quite relieved.......even though I'm not sure if that prompted me to go run a marathon because I could. But wait don't I want to have a hot little "Pilates body". Ok so now I'm feeling the need to drag myself through some extra exercises:)
As you can see I still struggle with keeping exercise and weight related thoughts realistic. All in all working towards moderation is a great thing; but one that I will do with much perseverance.

Blueberry Buckwheat Pancakes

Here is a new recipe for you to try. Compliments of the lovely nutritionist I work with. I made a double batch and individually froze them. That way I can just pop them in the toaster in the morning! Less dishes:) I'm stoked.

I used Arrowhead Mills Organic Buckwheat Pancake and Waffle Mix and follow the recipe on the back. In addition to those ingredients I also added
  • 1tsp ground flax seed (your body can't breakdown the whole flax seed) per pancake
  • 1tsp wheat germ per pancake- so one batch makes 5 pancakes=5tsp
  • 2tsp vanilla
  • Spices to taste such as Cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, grated orange zest, etc
  • blueberries 1/2 cup to 1 cup-I just eyeball it(thanks RR)

With all the added goodies about 300 calories per serving (2 pancakes) approx 9 g of protein and fiber. As well as a great source of calcium, iron, and B vitamins, etc! Of course depending what you add this could all change a bit

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Long but funny-hope this makes you laugh

So I think the neighbors think I’m crazy now. Well If they can see into my backyard that is. This morning I went outside to turn the pool on and almost had a heart attack. When right in front of me I see a spider web, and I am pretty sure I saw the spider web because there was a large object in the middle. That large object just so happened to have 8 legs. Aahhh! As I look right into they eyes (if they have eyes) of a monstrous spider- black and hairy you know the kind. So I halt to a stop turn around and run back towards the house. Grab the pool leaf net thingy to protect myself all because I really want to go swimming today (sit in my floaty chair with a cold beverage) I attempt to knock the web down with the net. Mister spider flew over to the pool ladder and hid in the handles at the top. I then turned the pool pump on and ran back in the house.
As the temperature nears 95 and it’s supposed to feel like 100 with the humidity I decide it’s time to go swimming. I try on my new Juicy swimsuit that I got for such a great deal at Marshalls then try on the one I got from Victoria secret. The Victoria secret top is too small and I need to exchange it, but it’s covered in sequins so I definitely feel a little too flashy in it and since I probably would never wear it in public should exchange the whole suit for something else. Then I default back to my tropical blue and green one with the bamboo rings. Grab my phone, beer (because a wine glass in the pool is probably not a good idea). I open up the shed and peer around looking for spiders of course, and then cautiously grab my floaty chair. Drag it out and turn it over inspecting for bugs. Then toss it in the pool. Head over towards the ladder and shudder as I see that he is still there. I thought the spider had gone away earlier…..oh no he is still there!
So I get spider spray and attempt to spray him-I did this a couple hours earlier too. The can must be almost empty because it is not spraying very far. To think that I am going to get within that 2 feet range to actually spray him is crazy! I swear he kind of jumped out at me-like jumped at me to try to scare me off! Meanwhile the neighbors probably hear me talking to myself and /or mister spider and are probably dying laughing! So I attempt to spray the bug spray so that the wind might carry some poison his way. No such luck. Then I get a great idea! I’ll spray him off with the hose. So I get the hose out and play with the spray handle till I get a nice sharp stream. I spray him off. Yes he is defeated I can finally go swimming; except I am still a little leery because I don’t know where he went. I walk back to the patio and happen to look down and jump a little. Another spider not near as big, but probably hairier is right by my feet. I spray him with bug spray first, but it doesn’t reach him. Damn can, must be empty. Then I spray him with the hose and he is off into the grass. If I didn’t have flip flops on I would step on him. But I was afraid he was going to jump. Then I go back to inspect the pool ladder when I see mister spider triumphantly crawl back to the top of the handles. I am pissed now. He apparently has a strong web and is obviously attached to the ladder. I spray him really good this time, but again don’t know where he landed. So I have pretty much given up on going in the pool, and I am also wondering how much costs to leave that pump on for the next 4 days till my hubby is home? As I am wondering around the yard I notice a web and another spider on the other side of the pool. Yes it’s official I’m not going swimming. Normally it’s the threat of sharks or snakes that keeps me out of the water. Not today. Nope it is a spider. Meanwhile I am looking for an exterminator. Because yard work is just not going to happen when there are spiders around!

The hundred

The hundred is a classic pilates exercise. I searched youtube and found a video that goes over the form of the hundred so that you could also see what it looks like. It is generally one of the first exercises you learn. It gets your ciruculation going as well as strengthens your abdominal muscles. It is called the hundred because you are doing 100 beats with your hands. Breathing in for 5 beats and out for 5 beats counts as one repitition. You repeat that up to 10 times equaling 100 beats. Remember to take your time and work up to 100- you can always do 30-50-etc.

  • To get your head in proper position you want to keep your head down and nod your head bringing chin towards chest like you are trying to give yourself a double chin, then curl up to the tips of your shoulder blades using your abs aka "powerhouse"
  • 1st progression: If you are just starting out keep your feet on the floor with inner thighs connected and engaged-imagine squeezing a ball between the knees(this is not shown in the video)
  • 2nd progression is to bring your knees into your chest by lifting your feet off the floor.
  • 3rd progression is extending the legs up to 90 degrees with heels together and toes a fist distance apart. Making sure to engage the inner thighs as well as powerhouse.
  • 4th progression is extending the legs to 45 degrees.

Warning: If you feel any discomfort in the low back area bring your legs back in, you should not feel any back pain or neck pain. If you experience fatigue, straining, or pain in the neck let your head rest on the floor and you can continue the exercise. Remember to start at the basic exercise for the full set and progress from there.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Check out Nutrition Data

If you look down at the bottom of my page you will see I've added a widget from Hope you find it useful! I really enjoy their web page. It has recently been updated and is much more user friendly. They have a daily caloric needs calculator that also breaks down your nutrient needs as well. I thought it was pretty cool to see recommended amounts for my vitamin and mineral intakes.
When you search for a food item on the site it brings up a nutrition label for that food and also gives you the glycemic index, inflammation factor, vitamins, minerals, and rates the food for weight loss, optimum health, and weight gain. Check it out and let me know what you think.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Good pain vs Bad pain

"No pain, no gain" is not necessarily true all the time. If you are constantly in pain all the time during workouts or are always sore something might be wrong. Generally most people will experience soreness within a day or two after a hard workout, a new exercise, or returning to exercise from an extended break.
Are you wondering what good pain is? Good pain can be a number of things. Now it may not be pleasurable pain. By "good" I mean that it is associated with normal soreness and sensations, and not "bad" as in you are hurting yourself, causing injury or aggravating a prior injury, as well as the possibility of an underlying condition.
Good pain can occur during a workout if you are experiencing what is often referred to as muscle burning. It generally occurs towards the end of your set. Fatigue is setting in and you may experience a burning sensation in your muscles. It is also normal to feel soreness or even tightness or stiffness in your muscles that may set in 24-48 hours after a workout. The normal soreness you may feel after a workout is not the same as the muscle burn and may feel more intense. Most people find that after the initial workout and soreness associated with it, they tend to not experience that amount of soreness on a regular basis. That is of course if they stay consistant with their workouts. If you are constantly feeling sore and stiff after workouts check with your doctor.
Bad pain can occur during a workout for multiple reasons. If you have a prior injury that is still healing, doing too much can cause increased inflammation and worsen the injury. Sharp pain, aching and or throbbing pain can indicate you are doing too much too fast. Learning to listen to your body is so important and can prevent delayed healing, future injuries, and permanent damage. Doing too much too soon is a common cause of "bad" pain. If you are experiencing any of the above pain and if anything ever feels excruciating you may be using too much weight, doing to many reps, or performing the exercise wrong. If you have a question about how and what to do it is always beneficial to ask a professional. If you find you experience soreness and pain after every workout you should seek the advice of your doctor.

Notes to think about:

  • You may not experience muscle burning "good pain" and that's ok.
  • If you find you experience soreness and/or pain after every workout you should seek the advice of your doctor.
  • If you think you are hurting yourself or feel as though a muscle is about to snap-You SHOULD stop what you are doing! Don't try to finish those last 3 reps or last 1/4 mile. Your body is telling you it has had enough!
  • Listen to your body! Remember if you get hurt from doing too much too soon it can slow your overall progress down. Be patient.
  • Progression should be gradual for best results.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Bee-autiful Skin

If you are like me and struggle to keep your skin clear you are in luck. Years ago a friend of mine mentioned a website she had found that helped her acne. Then again a Mary Kay lady recommended the same website. It was started by a guy named Dan Kern. He shares what he has found to clear his acne and has also started his own line. You will find on his website information about acne, message boards, and reviews on all sorts of products such as otc, prescription, and household items. His main routine is to use a non-comedogenic gentle cleanser. Non-comedogenic means it won't cause acne, and if you have blemish problems you should always look for those words on your skincare and make-up products. Second step is using a benzoyl peroxide treatment. I use Mary Kay's Acne Treatment Gel it has 5% benzoyl peroxide. Third step is using a non-comedogenic moisturizer. I have had great results with Oil of Olay's sensitive skin formula, and I like that it has a sunscreen in it. For the most part when I follow the routine I have great results. Mind you I still had an occasional blemish and blackheads that generally aren't noticeable with makeup. I do admit to playing around with different face cleansers as I haven't found one I love yet. Whenever I use a cleanser with salicylic acid I tend to break out with painful blemishes. I have concluded I may be allergic or sensitive to it. Recently I decided to try cliniques cleansing bar and toner along with my MK acne gel. I wanted the toner as I felt I needed a little more exfoliation to get rid of rough patches. My last visit to I read about two products I wanted to try. Chances are you have them in your cupboard. One was lemon juice used as a toner, the other was a mask made with baking soda. I have not tried the lemon juice yet, but I did make the mask. All you need is baking soda, honey, and water. I measured it by eye-balling it, but it's approximately 1 tablespoon baking soda 1 teaspoon honey and enough water to make a paste. If your mixture gets too thin add more baking soda. I mixed it in a small bowl and applied with my fingers. Let it dry for 10-20 minutes and rinse off. The baking soda works as a scrub as well as cleansing and tightening your pores and the honey works as a moisturizer. After the first use I was impressed. My skin felt great and I felt like it shrunk and helped relieve inflammation from the blemishes. Currently I am trying it for the second time. It smells pretty sweet too.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Healthy Eats: Berrylicious Super Thick Smoothie

Here is a great smoothie recipe for you to tryout. It is super easy to make and you can change it up just by switching berries. It makes a great breakfast, snack, or dessert.

To serve 1:

1 Cup plain yogurt (I prefer yoplait It has 130 calories/0g Fat/19g Carbs/15g protein and 40% calcium)
1 small banana(I prefer mine frozen, but it works either way)
1 cup frozen berries of choice-strawberries, cherries, blueberries
  • Blend all ingredients together in a blender
  • Pour in a glass or bowl
  • Drink or eat with a spoon

Depending how frozen your berries/banana are it will turn out pretty thick which is why it makes a great dessert too, almost like frozen yogurt.

It is generally sweet enough for me, but sometimes your berries might be a little tarter than normal and honey is always a good option. Even better if you use local honey as I've heard it's supposed to help with allergies. As always check with your doctor before trying anything new to treat a health issue. If you are curious as to how it works check out Fitsugar and check out some precautions with this article at Consumer Health Digest

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Fave Things

Two years ago I got a pair Nike perfect DriFit pants for Christmas. I still have them and have added more pairs to my closet as well! These have to be the most flattering workout pants I've ever owned. They don't show every lump and bump you have even though they are body hugging. All you get is a nice smooth silhouette. The waist band is wider than most and doesn't cut in to give you a muffin top! You also won't lose your pants the next time your doing a rollup in Pilates class, these babies stay put. Even after multiple washings they don't seem to lose there shape or elasticity. I do try to hang dry them, but trust me there have been multiple times they have gone through the dryer. Priced at approx $60 depending where you get them: some options are and I noticed on the Nordstroms website they also had a silver/gray pant with a lavender waistband. I may have to add some color to my wardrobe which consists of mostly black items. Actually I have been doing pretty good adding a dose of color to my closet. My hubby lovingly refers to them as my ninja outfits:)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

When you just don't know what to write

So I am finally sitting down to write another post, but I can't seem to come up with anything worth writing about. So maybe if I just start typing something will come to mind. At least that is what I am hoping for. It's a quiet night except for the bugs outside. Who would have ever though such a loud noise could come from such a tiny creature! So as I sit here on my comfy beige couch with a glass of Yellow Tail Chardonnay my mind starts to wander over the events of my day.
I have to say that today has been a lazy day. I slept in, but that's because I stayed up pretty late last night. I suppose I got some stuff accomplished. Such as dishes, packing a lunch for my hubby, going to work myself, and now I am back at home on the couch where I started from. I've been getting great ideas all day about what I can do with my blog. However I am not necessarily a computer whiz. In actuality I don't know much at all about html and all the fancy stuff I could do to my page. I also don't have the money to pay someone else to do it. But I did browse through some books over at and found a blogging for dummies book! I think I might just have to get it.
Back to sitting on the couch:) I should also mention I am contemplating what to do for a workout tonight. Now I did get some cardio in when I was teaching a class, but I do need to do something else. I told you it's a lazy day as in I'm feeling lazy in the sense of not wanting to workout! I know you know what I mean. It's not that I won't feel great once I've started, and have a great sense of accomplishment when I'm done. You know what? I think I'll browse through my on demand channels there has got to be something new and fun on FitTV. I love that channel. The great thing is that there are workouts at all different levels, and there are so many options you can always pick something new if you wanted to. Some of my favorites are the Cindy Whitmarsh workouts, and the Jackie workouts you know the girl from the workout show on Bravo! Well I'm off to break a sweat and I suggest you do too:)