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Heading to Florida

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Hello and happy Saturday!

I hope all is going well with you, and you are doing something really fun with your favorite people ūüôā

Today has been a pretty jam packed day…for a good reason though! ¬†Tonight I am leaving for a family vacation to Florida in honor of my younger brother’s graduation from college. ¬†Because I have been so busy with work and teaching group fitness recently, I literally have not had a spare second to think about packing (or maybe it’s the fact that I truly hate the packing process…)

That being said, I started this morning bright and early with a delicious bowl of what I like to call Monkey Oats!


The Monkey Oats were chocolatey, peanut buttery, bananay, and just plain good!

Monkey Oats

  • 1/3 cup oatmeal
  • 2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 stevia packets
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 sprinkle cinnamon
  • 1/3 banana
  • 1 Tbsp peanut butter

Directions:

Place the oats in a microwave safe bowl with 2/3 cups water. ¬†Microwave for 1 minute. ¬†Take the oats from the microwave and mix in cocoa, stevia, protein, cinnamon, and about 2/3 cup more water. ¬†Microwave for about 1 minute and 30 seconds, or until the oats are the desired consistency. ¬†Top with bananas and peanut butter…and enjoy!!

Workout

After my oaty breakfast, I spent the morning reviewing my Body Pump notes. ¬†I was a little nervous for class today because I was teaching the latest release all by myself for the first time! ¬†The class was great, I had so much fun, and I only made a couple of minor mistakes…nothing to sweat about!

After teaching that class, my brain officially went on vacation mode!! I came home to make myself a quick lunch, and Brian had a little surprise waiting for me.

For the past 10 days, Brian had been in London and Ireland with his mom and aunt visiting family (yes I know…I was only slightly jealous he was in London right before the Olympics!)

Brian bought me a couple of souvenirs, the first being an Irish wool sweater! ¬†I absolutely love being warm and cozy all the time, and love bundling up in big chunky sweaters, so when Brian asked what I wanted while he was on the trip, I jokingly said I wanted a wool sweater…I guess he didn’t get the joke ūüėČ

I love it!

He also got a cool Olympic backpack from London!  We are definitely taking it with us to Florida.

After present time, it was time to get down to business. ¬†Brian cleaned our little apartment, and we packed a whole weeks worth of stuff into one bag…

That’s right…ONE BAG! ¬†We are driving to Florida, and in the car will be my mom, dad, Brenna, Brian, and me. ¬†There is very limited space, so we had to be flexible…luckily it is summer, meaning our clothes are small and can easily be rolled up.

The trip down to Florida should be interesting considering we have three adults in the back seat of the car…and my dad hates making pit stops…wish us luck!!

Rough Ride Home

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I am home for the weekend in Fort Wayne, but I did not have an easy road getting there last night.

 

 

That would be my car, with a giant flat tire on the highway. ¬†Luckily, it didn’t cause any accidents and I was safely able to pull of the road. ¬†Shortly after I pulled to the side, a kind police officer stopped to help me out, call the tow truck, and wait with me until everything was finished. ¬†He even stopped traffic on the highway to get everything moved over into the far lane. ¬†What ¬†great help he was!! I couldn’t thank him enough.

After my adventure on the highway, I finally ended up at home about an hour later than planned.  Thankfully, my mom had a delicious meal of salmon, sweet potatoes, and veggies all plated up for me and ready to go.  I was hungry and the food tasted good!

My mom made a new rub for the sweet potatoes and salmon that is to die for! ¬†Don’t worry, I got the recipe and will share later ūüėČ

 

My mom and I then spent a good portion of the evening trying to photograph our dogs…we finally gave up and deemed them both cute in person, but horribly un-photogenic!!

 

This Morning

Today, Mom and I got up nice and early to head to a diner owned by one of her friends. ¬†Literally, they just reopened the doors on Tuesday!! ¬†I’ll go into more detail on Minnie’s diner in a later post ūüėČ

We both had veggie omelettes, mom’s with a side of potatoes

 

and mine with a side on plain oats. ¬†I seriously think that was on of the biggest bowls of oats I have ever seen! ¬†Tasty, but I couldn’t finish it.

 

We then ran a couple of errands including mailing a package to a special giveaway winner (yes, I know the giveaway was a while ago, but we have been in contact and she understands!)  It should be there by Monday!

 

Next on the agenda was Body Pump. ¬†I had to have a sub teach my class for today in Indianapolis, but I made up for it by attending class as a participant this morning. ¬†I upped my weights today…and all I can say is OUCH!!! (in a good way of course!)

 

Then, it was time to head home, shower, and eat some lunch.  For me, lunch included tuna with some low fat cottage cheese, cucumbers and carrots, some leftover sweet potatoes from last night, and grapes and berries.  So summery and tasty!

 

 

Now, I am off to get a new tire for my car, meet up with a friend, and mom is at a baby shower.  Enjoy your Saturday!

Completely Delicious Meatless Zucchini Lasagna

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Many of you may know that Monday was the official launch of Body Pump release 82 at the gym I am an instructor at.  Because I love a theme, and I love to dress for the occasion, I ordered a shirt from the Les Mills web site that matches the Body Pump theme.

I was tracking the shirt online to make sure that I would get it by the time of the launch, and on Monday morning it said that the shirt was in my city! ¬†Naturally, I thought that it was at the house just waiting for someone to pick it up. ¬†When I told Brian that the shirt had arrived, being the loving fiance that he is, he immediately headed to the house to pick up the shirt….and to find that it was not at the house! ¬†It was in town, but it had not been delivered yet ūüė¶ So, I had to complete the launch with just a plain red tank top. ¬†Clearly, the red tank worked fine, but as soon as I got home what was waiting for me??

The Body Pump tank top!

So, I didn’t have it for this launch, but at least I can wear it when I teach my Saturday classes!

Meatless Zucchini Lasagna

In my family, lasagna is that dish that everyone loves but we reserve for special occasions like Christmas Eve. ¬†So, we only end up having the tasty dish once or twice a year. ¬†Well, this weekend while I was planning my meals, I was in the mood for this special dish, so I decided to do a little experimenting with my mom’s traditional recipe, and this is what I came up with!

Yields: 4 large servings

Ingredients:

  • 4 small zucchini
  • 1 cup of your favorite tomato sauce
  • 8 oz of Morningstar Farms Meal Starters¬†(I am seriously loving these things!)
  • 1 cup of low fat or fat free cottage cheese
  • 1 small red onion
  • 3-4 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 Tbsp garlic salt (divided)
  • 1 tsp oregano (divided)
  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 3 oz low fat string cheese (or mozzarella)
  • 9×11 glass baking dish

Directions:

First, place a pot of water on the stove to boil while you brown the meal starters and the onion together.  While the meal starters and onion are cooking add 2 basil leaves, 1/2 Tbsp garlic salt, 1/2 tsp oregano, and the Italian seasoning.  Once the water on the stove is boiling, place zucchini pieces that are cut into the shape of lasagna noodles (long strips) into the boiling water to cook until tender, about 4 minutes.

Mix the tomato sauce with the meal starter and onion mixture.  In a separate bowl, combine the cottage cheese with the remaining spices.

Now, it is time to begin layering the lasagna! ¬†First, put down a light layer of sauce into the 9×11 glass baking dish, then place a layer of the zucchini “noodles” on top so that you cannot see anymore sauce.

Next, spread half of the cottage cheese mixture on top of the zucchini and top with half of the mozzarella or string cheese cheese.

Then, it is time to repeat the steps all over again!  So, place another layer of sauce, then the zucchini, then the cheeses, then one final layer of sauce.  Place in the oven at 400 for 25-30 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and it is cooked all the way through.  Allow to set in the pan for about 5 minutes before serving.

Last but not least…cut yourself a slice and enjoy!

Nutrition for 4 servings:

Calories:  155  Fat:  4.4g  Carbs:  10.2g  Protein:  17.4g

Tell me what some of your family’s special occasion meals are!! Do you ever “break the rules” and eat them without there being a special occasion??

 

My First Official Launch and Zucchini Complete Breakfast

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Good morning!

I have to start by saying that last night’s launch was¬†amazing! ¬†We had such a great turnout for all of the classes and we all had so much fun doing it. ¬†I have to admit that I was pretty nervous before teaching my two tracks in the new Body Pump release, but after doing it once, I wanted to get right back up there and do it again!

We are already starting to brainstorm about our next launch in October!

Breakfast

To make things even better, I started my day with a delicious breakfast as well.

I feel like I am constantly searching for a way to incorporate veggies into my breakfast since I typically go for the sweeter stuff in the morning.  This breakfast is a complete meal in that it counts as one serving of veggies, 2 servings of starch, 1 serving of good fat, and 1 serving of protein.  All that you need to do is add a little fruit on top (I think strawberries taste delicious with this little cake!) and you have all of your food groups covered.  This little breakfast cake would be perfect to prepare ahead of time and eat in those mornings when you are on the go.

Zucchini Breakfast Cake

Yield:  4 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of zucchini
  • 2 cups of oats or oat flour
  • 4 Tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 scoops of your favorite protein powder
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 6-8 packets of stevia (you can do this to taste, it really depends on how sweet you like things)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. ¬†In food processor or blender place zucchini, egg whites, and almond milk. ¬†Combine the zucchini mixture with all of the other ingredients and mix until combined. ¬†Place in large muffin tins, or in an 8×8 baking pan. ¬†Bake for 20-25 minutes. ¬†Store in the refrigerator. ¬†Enjoy!!!

Nutrition:

Calories:  324.9  Fat:  11.6g  Carbs:  60.6g  Protein:  19.7g

Have a great Tuesday!

Koru: Representation of Strength

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First things first…breakfast!

I started out my morning with a batch of protein pancakes topped with homemade almond butter, strawberries, and a side of Greek yogurt.  So good! Breakfast is definitely my favorite meal of the day.

I needed to start out the day with good fuel in my tummy, because today is a very exciting day for me.

The gym that I teach Body Pump at launches the new release of Body Pump today…and I am teaching two of the tracks!

If you are new to the blog, I recently completed the initial training module for Body Pump, and I am loving every step of this new fitness journey.  I worked hard to create a great video tape of a class that I taught, sent it in and I am anxiously awaiting the video assessment results.  In the mean time,  I have been subbing classes and I also started teaching my very own class once a week.

Secret Package

On Thursday, I got a notice in the mail that I had a package waiting for me at the post office.  I had just ordered a Les Mills Body Pump workout tank top, so I thought that is what my package was.  Because I head into work before the post office opens, I had Brian pick up the mystery package.

Once he picked up the package, he called me sounding pretty confused. ¬†I thought for sure that the package was my new workout top, but Brian explained that the package was very small…too small for a tank top, and from Indonesia. ¬†What could it be???

When he opened it up and explained to me that it was a bone carved necklace, I knew exactly what it was!

When I started attending Body Pump and other Les Mills classes, I noticed similar necklaces on the instructors’ necks. ¬†When I was in training, the trainers and some of the participants had necklaces on too. ¬†I didn’t know what the necklaces were, but I suspected ¬†that they were a symbol Les Mills used to represent strength.

My mom, being the sneak that she is, secretly asked her Body Pump instructor about the necklace that she wore and where she could purchase one for me to help me in my new fitness journey.

The necklace is a New Zealand koru, symbolizing growth, new life, strength, and peace.  Because Les Mills originated in New Zealand, several Les Mills instructors wear these necklaces to provide them with personal, mental, and physical strength while teaching.

I received my necklace just in time to teach my first official class and right before the new launch. ¬†It is the perfect symbol of strength and personal growth, and I can’t wait to wear it at each class and see where my new Les Mills and Body Pump fitness road takes me.

Wish me luck at the launch tonight!

Do you have anything that you wear or keep with you to help symbolize strength???

Bachelorette Party and Weekend Recap!

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*Warning: ¬†some of these photos are extremely blurry…

Yesterday, we celebrated Erin’s upcoming wedding with her bachelorette party. ¬†The day was FULL of activities and I felt so special to be included in all of it!

We started the day bright and early heading out to the lake where we rented a boat. ¬†With a slide on the back! ¬†We literally spent the entire day in the sun…it was glorious!

We then showered and got ready as fast as we could so that we could get back in time for dinner, presents, and the CHICKEN LIMO!

We tried to all fit in the lovely chicken limo…but unfortunately it literally started dragging and squeeking on the bottom…so we had to have the limo driver take two trips…oops!

That would be the chicken limo behind us

The bachelorette herself!

It was a great day and night, everything was perfect and memorable!

Today

Yesterday was my Dad’s birthday. ¬†He spent the day in Fort Wayne celebrating with mom, but this morning, my sister and I took him out for breakfast at a little restaurant called Biscuits.

This restaurant is a little hole in the wall place that serves breakfast and Mexican all day.  Two random things to put together?  Not at this joint!  And their specialty?  Biscuits and gravy of course! It is located between 5 and 10 minutes from where I went to college, and I remember many a hung over morning heading to this eatery for some delicious biscuits and gravy.

Even though the memories from the past are from those glorious morning after moments, my sister and I agreed that the food served seemed like the perfect “Dad” food.

I enjoyed an egg white omelette with veggies…honestly, I was kind of surprised that they could do egg whites! ¬†It was pretty tasty ūüėČ

It was great to see Dad and my sister Brenna this morning, what a great way to start the day!

Body Pump

Today marked a pretty big milestone in my group fitness and Les Mills career…I taught my very first Body Pump class completely solo. ¬†That’s right, no video taping, no other instructors around…just me.

Did I make a couple of mistakes….yes, but did I keep going, have fun, and finish on time…YES! ¬†It was a great feeling. ¬†The band-aid has been ripped off, and now I can’t wait to do it again.

Sunday Errands

After Body Pump, I drove to the grocery store and on the way I snacked on a Lemon Zest Luna Bar….so yummy!

I love little bars like this because I wasn’t starving because I had only eaten breakfast a couple of hours before, but I knew that I needed to eat something so that I didn’t want to buy¬†everything¬†at the grocery store. ¬†They are so small and easy to throw in your bag and have on hand all the time…it’s my “emergency food.”

I headed to the store, filled up my cart with lots of goodies, then headed back to the house to fix up my meals and snacks for the week.

I love that on Sundays I “have” to do the things that I love….shop and cook!

Now, I’m off to prepare a workout for a class that I am teaching tomorrow morning featuring…

the Bosu Ball…post including the workout¬†coming soon!!

I hope you all had an amazing weekend, and are getting ready to start the work week off on the right food tomorrow!

Wedding Season Kickoff

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Today is the start of WEDDING SEASON!

Brian and I, along with his Mom, will be heading to our reception venue later this afternoon to check out a wedding set-up for a wedding the size of ours.  I am excited to see it all set-up, it has been about a year since I have been inside of the venue, so it will be good to refresh my memory.

After crashing that wedding, we will all get changed and dressed up and ready to attend Brian’s cousin’s wedding. ¬†The engagement party at their house was fantastic, so I can hardly wait to see what the actual wedding will be like.

Breakfast

Last night, I prepped myself a batch of overnight oats in a jar of nearly empty peanut butter, and I am so glad that I did because nothing hot seemed appetizing to me at all when I woke up this morning. ¬†I tend to get cold very easily, and for me when I am cold I am very uncomfortable. ¬†I would rather be hot than cold¬†any day. ¬†So, when I sleep, I often sleep with sweat pants and a sweat shirt, or multiple layers and then I pile up a ton of blankets on me. ¬†Even though I enjoy being warm, sometimes, I wake up in the morning¬†burning up because of all the thick layers…today was one of those mornings, and I was so thankful to have a cold breakfast waiting for me.

Oats, Plant Fusion protein, vanilla extract, cinnamon, a little bit of peanut butter on the bottom, and some chopped apple…yumm!

Now, it’s time to practice Body Pump before my fourth team teaching session this morning, run 3 miles, and figure out what to wear to this wedding.

Have a great Saturday!

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