Friday, October 14, 2011

A recipe Challenge - Curried pumpkin spice baked oatmeal

B Healthy with B has an October food challenge, to create a meal(s) using 7 ingredients prechosen ingredients. I love a good challenge and fitting things into my meal plan so off I went!

My ingredients:
30 grams quick oats
22 grams yam
57 grams pumpkin puree (I used fresh not canned)
25 grams apple, peeled
20 grams fresh cranberries, chopped
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp red curry powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
sweetener of choice (I like raw stevia or agave but I think brown sugar would really be perfect for this)
dash cinnamon

What I did
mixed pumpkin and yams with the spices (except the cinnamon!) then added in the cranberries, apples & oats. Mix well then add in water (I would say more than 1/4c less than 1/2c as the pumpkin is watery). Sprinkle the top with cinnamon and bake at 350 for 35 minutes. Let it rest for 5-10 minutes and it will come out of the pan very nicely. I use a glass bread pan but really any small dish will do the trick. This is a small serving (which fits my personal meal plan) but can easily be doubled or tripled for more volume.

What it looks like:

How it tastes:
It's almost like a gingerbread cookie with fruit in it. My original dish I added allspice and cloves (1/8tsp each) for extra spice since I do not use sugar and limit the other sweeteners. I think if I do this again with those 2 added spices I may also add a sprinkle of ginger powder. If you try this with the added spices I think a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar on top would be divine!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

This would be day 21

But I am so over it. I LOVED loved Paleo the first 2 weeks, I felt great plenty of energy and the meal planning was a breeze. Then week 3 came along and suddenly I was very lethargic, crabby, STARVING, and afraid to workout b/c I didn't feel like what I was eating was nearly enough food. My body was missing carbs in a bad bad way. Friday I said I can't take this anymore and I ate a bowl of baked oatmeal. It was the best bowl of oatmeal I had had. Over the last 3 days I added more grains/carbs back in and my energy perked back up and I began feeling great again, like I did on week 1 of the whole30. I got in a great workout today and can't say I plan to look back.

While I was doing this diet I stumbled upon the 17 day diet. It's actually not 17 days but each cycle is 17 days until you get to cycle 4 which is maintenance. I could see following this plan starting on a rest week since cycle 1 is calorie restricted but what I live is that it doesn't take away my greek yogurt or protein shakes and I can enjoy oatmeal after the 1st cycle.

So could I see doing paleo as an everyday lifestyle diet? Not a chance. Could I see doing the whole30 as a way to kick off a diet, bust through a plateau, and/or detox? Most definitely.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

1 week in and feeling fine!

Here we are at day 7 of Paleo and Day 5 of Insanity: The Asylum and I feel GREAT! I could see moving to a paleo diet as a lifestyle change although I do think I'd add back in my daily coffee or latte and probably my greek yogurt too although I have not missed them as much as I thought I would. Sugar has been the easiest to give up and I only miss dairy when I am making something cheesey for the kids.

My energy levels have been insane! I spent time in the kitchen Sunday cooking all of my weeks breakfasts and stuff for my husband as well. Lunches are easier to prep but we did precook all the meat needed. I am actually surprised that while it seems like a lot of meat it's less than I was eating before as the portions are smaller.

Asylum has been an adventure. I lack a good amount of coordination needed for speed/agility but loved the strength and back to core workout. Vertical plyo, while it sounded scary wasn't so bad. I did have to modify some due to my knees but otherwise I kept up pretty well. I will say I detest jump roping and I do not find it to be an "active rest" type of activity lol I can't wait to try out gameday and overtime in another week :D

Friday, June 3, 2011

Day 3 of Paleo

My initial thoughts on this "diet" is "wow this is so much easier than I thought it would be" and it's true! Now I admit I forked over $10 for a paleo book that has a 30day meal plan to make life a little easier and it's been well worth it! Day 1 I was a little tired, lacking some energy that I would normally get from coffee or carbs. Day 2 I had a huge increase in energy which was a good thing since it was 3rd grade filed trip day and I was running after 3 girls and my boy. I even did push ups during breaks, ha! It's now day 3 and I practically leaped out of bed. Got up and cooked my breakfast and drank some water then it was off to my first Asylum workout.

Now here I sit bouncing off the walls practically and wanting to get out and do . . .something, anything! I wonder this day will lead me too. So, so far I am really enjoying this diet and can see sticking to it, maybe not as strictly after the 30 days but definitely close to it.

Monday, May 30, 2011

letting it all hang loose

So the past few days I've been light on my exercise and eating however I want. I will admit it is a bit liberating not counting every calorie that enters my mouth. I don't feel any worse for just taking some time off, although I have kept busy with the massive spring cleaning this weekend. Despite all of that I decided to step on the scale and. . . I am down a lb in just a few days. I can't decide if I am happy or upset by it since I had been eating and working out to gain mass.

I am really excited to see what the Paleo plan will do for my body. It's been a very long 17 months trying to tweak everything to get my body to respond the way I want it to. I already eat fairly close to paleo, this will just be taking it a few steps further.

So today I am going to put away my measuring tapes, my bathroom scale and my food scale. I am going to enjoy my last 2 mornings of oatmeal breakfasts and coffee filled with half n half and sugar. I am going to throw caution to the wind and chow down on a big juicy bacon cheeseburger on wheat bun and munch on potato chips while I drink down an ice cold beer. I am going to clean my kitchen and prep my veggies & fruits and lay out my meal plan so when I wake up Wed I will be ready to start the month with a bang :)

Friday, May 27, 2011

The Whole30


My really cool friend, Sarah Brown, introduced me to the whole 30. I guess it's a paleo diet? It sounds interesting and hey it's summer which means I have access to lots of yummy fresh local produce! I am always looking for ways to eat better, live better, so I am jumping in! I will start on June 1 as I just prefer to start things on the 1st, makes it easier on my poor little brain!

I am still going with my P90X as well, following an altered plan for building mass which also means I have increased my food intake. I admit I am nervous about possible fat gain but so far (I'm only on week 2 of the new plan) it seems to be all right and I swear I am seeing a bit of definition in my thighs. For anyone else interested in this schedule check out Get Ripped At Home, they even have a sample meal plan which I use as a guide. One thing I do that is not listed is on my light cardio/off days I eat far less. Weight days I aim for 2300 calories and light/off days I aim for 1500-1600. Since the whole30 commands no calorie counting and no jumping on the scale (I'll have to get my husband to hide ours!) this should get realllly interesting!

Friday, May 13, 2011

High Five Friday

My mentor and new bff loves to theme her days. I think that's kind of cool, but I admit to being a smitten fan girl ;) My favorite of course is Awesomeday, known to the general public as Wednesday. Friday of course also has a theme and it's High Five's all around! Heck it even has a theme song courtesy of one Rebecca Black. Now her singing might not be so great and the lyrics are kind of lame but damnit the tune is catchy and I constantly find myself singing "Friday, Friday, gettin down on Friday" and other lyrics. It does not help that there are some amazing artists out there doing covers of this song, I mean damn talk about taking it to the next level right?

Ok so along with this whole high five friday thing she also asks 5 questions. This is something I generally suck at so I may need a little google-fu help to come up with good questions ;)

What are your plans for the weekend?
Mine have had to change a little due to a family emergency and my husband flying out last minute tonight to MO however the general plan is to take 1 rest day and do some spring cleaning in the house, finish knitting a contest sock, and run a 5k, oh and the usual grocery shopping ::groan::

What was your last workout?
Husband and I just killed P90X legs and back and ab ripper X. I still have some step ups to do tonight and should probably get on that as soon as I am done here.

Do you have a favorite after workout meal or supplement?
Totally depends on the day and workout. If I am just doing cardio then I load up on P90X recovery formula (mmm that stuff is NUMMY!!). On weight lifting days it's either straight to dinner or I'll have a protein shake with 1/2 a fruit and 1/4 c oats blended with vanilla almond milk.

What is your favorite television show?
I have a few but I find it hard to keep up on shows as I only watch during a small timeframe while the kids are at school. I have my guilty pleasures like Nikita, HellCats, One Tree Hill & The Vampire Diaries and some more not so guilty pleasures such as Castle, Dr Who, Survivor, Lie to Me, Body of Evidence, The Big Bang Theory & HIMYM. And then I have my classics like Buffy, Firefly, Angel, That 70's show & Roseanne. Man it sounds like I watch a lot of tv but really only 2 maybe 3 hours a day and I am always knitting while watching.

What is a dream you have or something you'd like to accomplish in your life?
Oh gosh I have so many, but isn't that the wonderful thing about dreams and goals? I want to finish getting certified as a childbirth educator first and foremost and then delve into becoming a certified pre/post natal fitness instructor and nutritionist, I would like to continue to move up in my hooping skills and eventually open a women's only gym in Charleston with my sister, my cousin and a friend. I think the gym is the ultimate goal right now and it would have so many fabulous things going on with it. I am super excited to be able to get to that point in our lives where we can fund it and run it together.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

ADA & Beachbody Team up to help ppl with type 2 diabetes

A fantastic regimine designed by Kathy Smith in partnership with the American Diabetes Association. You get a 12 week fitnes and nutrition plan and it's a fabulous price!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Another AWESOMEDAY recap :-)

Another awesomeday in the books and this one made even more awesome by the fantabulous weather we had yesterday. A nice little preview to spring :) So awesomeday went a little something like this

things that are awesome #1 My fav song from my fav movie via @youtube #awesomeday

things that are awesome #2 #starwarsday May the 4th be with you!

things that are awesome #3 Being a @Beachbody coach and getting paid to do what I love doing!

thing that are awesome #4 surprisingly enough this chocolate omelet with pb on top!

things that are awesome #5 pull up assist bands, no way i could do this pull up challenge without them!

things that are awesome #6 #Insanity core cardio & balance recovery wk workout @shaunTfitness makes me sweat and works my core the best!

things that are awesome #7 gorgeous warm sunshine, going for a walk with the dog right now :D

awesome things #8 prepping the rest of the wks breakfast -spinach/mush/broccoli eggwhite crustless quiche YUM

awesome thing #9 having a group of friends that can quickly recommend some good shin stretches ♥

awesome thing #10 blueberry chicken salad for lunch!

awesome thing #11 granny smith apple dipped in plain greek yogurt

awesome thing #12 ticket prices for flights to SC going down and becoming a bit more in my budget zone

awesome thing #13 having friends working through the same path to a new/healthier life as you are ♥

awesome thing #14, being a part of this company #forbesvideo Million Dollar Hula Hoop Business

awesome thing #15, @shakeology shake, buttery real popcorn, & Pixie's bedtime snuggles. Good night friends! #awesomeday

And 2 more awesome things I didn't post about? Getting a cafepress store started for Team Awesome! And The preliminary website up and running for Team Awesome!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Month 1 woooo!

Tomorrow is my last work out for month 1 of Insanity! This month really flew by and my cardio has so greatly improved. I may not be seeing much in the way of physical results but seriously I love how much more lung capacity I have. During Pure cardio today I was thinking man if it weren't for the fact my quads are on fire I wouldn't need to take a break at all. And then all of a sudden the workout was over and I was totally bummed that I was done. 4 weeks ago I thought this workout was going to kill me, funny how hat has changed.

Despite my rather odd addiction to the Insanity I am very much looking forward to recovery week. Not to mention I'll be starting the P90X again with my husband now that he has finally been cleared to workout again. I have to say one thing I have truly missed with all of this cardio is lifting weights. I have noticed my arms and back are losing some of that definition I had gained from my last round and I want it back!

Now if I could just pinpoint why it is I can't get my body to let go of this little layer of fat on my belly & thighs and get my abs ripped again I'll be golden!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Hooping at a Park opening

On a somewhat last minute invitation I was asked to hoop and bring hoops to a park opening in Seattle WA today. I was thrilled, a paid hooping gig where I get to share something I love with a bunch of people? Heck yea! There were camera/news crews there but to be honest I have no idea how much of the hooping they got as I was totally consumed with having fun in my hoop, helping others learn to hoop and making sure none of my hoop suddenly walked away ;)

It was such a gloriously beautiful day today, I mean we could not have asked for more perfect weather for this. I think I got about a months worth of Vitamin Sun in 2 hours, and a little bit if a sunburn to boot. I am physically exhausted, hooping for 2 hours is HARD, plus smiling, talking, walking, teaching. I should sleep good to night!

Now if I can figure out how to edit video I'll have something to post on my youtube page, looking for me there? You can find me under the name JennKnits. For now I leave you with this doofy faced happy hooper!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wednesday = Awesomeday

So my coaches coach and friend/mentor of mine decided to make Wednesdays Awesomedays, I loved it last week and decided to jump on board with Team Awesome and do the same. So all day long on fb/twitter we post something awesome. I am going to recap my awesome day right here!

Awesome things
#1, losing 2.5" off my thighs bitches! (after 2 weeks of Insanity!)
#2 -- 4-20, party now for tomorrow skynet will get ya ;)
#3- jamming to Paula Cole in the car with the music turned as loud as I want!
#4- The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing
#5 -- procrastinating everything so I can enjoy my 1st latte in weeks!
#6 rewarding myself with a new bikini(s) saving $15 and getting a $25 swim tote for free :)
#7 getting my new HR monitor and my netrition order 1 day early!
#8 chocolate Shakeology® with PB2, frozen blueberries & vanilla almond milk for a quick healthy lunch ♥
#9 rocking my Dr Who TARDIS shirt :D

#10 when your son receives an award for ranking 10% of his 8th grade class in the district. Take that principals who all thought he should be stuck in 7th grade rather than skipping to 8th :P Eat my shorts!
#11 being able to pull my jeans down without having to unbutton them lol
#12 burning 620 cal with pure cardio & cardio abs Insanity®
#13 my husband cooking a kickass dinner while I workout ♥
#14 vanilla protein shake with banana & pb2
#15 is having a kid make it for you
#16 completing my hoarwars sock before getting killed (knitting game like assassin)
#17 peace & quiet before I fall asleep
#18 being part of Team Awesome, Sarah Brown & Brooke Lippy

and that is it! I am exhausted and ready to pass out, peace!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

They say that the hardest part is the start

How to psyche yourself up before you lace up your sneakers.

Do you have to really psyche yourself out before you can push play or lace up your shoes? Personally I do. I think I spend the first 3-4 hours of my morning warming myself up to the idea of getting all hot and sweaty. I'd probably expend a lot less energy if I would just get up and push play as soon as I wake up but where is the fun in that?

I love how I feel right after a workout though, I may be drag ass tired before, I may get my booty kicked during, but right after I have such a high and that is the part I love the most about exercise. 45 minutes later I am dragging again but so what, I killed it hard during that 45-55 minutes of a workout right? Is it nap time yet? lol

Tomorrow is my last day of week 2 of Insanity and then it will be fit test time again. Oh dear. I admit the fit test nearly killed me, I wonder how much I have improved just in 2 weeks? I am excited to find out!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


I am so excited to have been invited to hoop at a Park Opening in just over a week. Of course this doesn't give me much time to prepare and if the weather keeps up the way it is I may be winging it out there! I am working on some fun simple choreography for my son and I to do as a quickie performance before we begin a bit of demo teaching. This is such a great opportunity to gain some exposure which of course makes me all that more nervous. Time to get my game face on!

I was really hoping to use today to record my practice so I'd have an idea of where I need to smooth things out, slow things down or eliminate something but of course as is typical of Washington weather it is pouring buckets :/ If it is raining tomorrow I may have to go use the community center hall to practice and record which will just be awkward :/

Saturday, April 9, 2011

A week! A week! A week!

Silly thing to be excited about but I made it through my 1st full week of Insanity + BBL! This week has taught me a lot. 1) I can actually do intense cardio without dying 2) It's probably wise to not combine BBL with Insanity since they both use the same muscle groups and double training can both cause injuries and wear out your muscles and 3) Wow do my joints hurt! Today is an Insanity rest day and I am working on next weeks schedule so I don't hurt myself and to add in some weight days because surprisingly enough I miss lifting and I miss Tony. I also invested in a glucosamine + chondroiton supplement and a thick foam floor mat to help my knees.

My workout plan for this following week:
Saturday (that's today):
BBL high & tight
P90X chest & back

cardio power resistance

Pure cardio

Plyo cardio circuit

BBL high & tight
P90X shoulders/arms

cardio power resistance

pure cardio
cardio abs

bbl high & tight
P90X chest & back

week 2 here I come :D

Friday, April 1, 2011

Yea, that hurt a little

I may have taken Monday by the horns but it came back and bit me in the ass Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday! I was. . . sore to say the least. Tuesday I could barely walk so I took that as my rest day. One day in and having to rest, such crap! Wednesday I got in a BBL High & Tight and that was about all I could muster. Thursday was better so I did the BBL Sculpt but again chose not to push it with Insanity. I am feeling much better today, my muscles are not freezing up while I am sitting which is a major bonus! That means it's crank it back up time! Insanity cardio resistance was on the ticket this morning. I really liked this workout, intense yes but plenty of breaks to catch your breath before jumping right back in. After a break and some lunch, then a little knitting I dove right back in with high & tight. This is by far my favorite workout as it really hits every single muscle in the booty. And my booty got double time since todays Insanity also focused on the glutes!

Now it's time to go to "work". I never thought I would work my BB coach business, simply because I am not a salesperson and I always feel like when I start to talk about something I sound a bit like a used car salesman. I recently decided to change that! I love beachbody, I love what it has given back to me and I love that I can help others reach their goals too! Feel free to come check my coach page out and even sign up for a free beachbody account <3

Monday, March 28, 2011

Starting the week off right

Monday -- the dreaded first day of the week, the day that everything falls to shit for no reason other than it's Monday. Well fuck that noise, I grabbed Monday by the horns and I am making it my bitch.

I have a nice laundry list of things that have to get done today so I made sure to get to sleep early so I would be bright eyed and bushy tailed come morning. Amazingly enough I woke up at 5am and cuddled with my Pixie for awhile, then it was off to get the kids ready for school. Once they were gone I admit I snuck in a quick 1 hour nap but damn it felt good! Hopped out of bed, made my coffee, checked my messages and said LET"S GO BODY!

Got up off my ass and hit it with Bum Bum & Tummy Tuck from Brazil Butt lift. After I made a fabulous breakfast yumm and sat back down to check more messages and type this up. I still have Shaun T's plyo to do today, get dinner prepped so the family has something to eat while I am off teaching a hoopdance class tonight, oh and yea squeeze in some neglected knitting ;) I have to say I am feeling great and this Monday has been owned!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

That was INSANE!

I changed my fitness plan for this month and switched to a BBL + Insanity plan. I have the husband and the 2 older boys doing Insanity with me. Ethan & Jared plan to start track again this year so Insanity is a great plan for them. Shaun T's background is in track so his workouts are definitely geared to the runner. We all did the fit test today and I have to say that is some serious shit. It's nice to see where we all have different strengths and weaknesses (I am the push up jack Queen yeeaaa!) and I am excited to see how much we improve over the next 60 days.

I missed my 1 year yay me for sticking to exercising and eating great anniversary so I plan to dig through some previous photo and do a collage so I can see how much improvement I have made in the past year. I know it is there but I do still feel a bit frustrated that the changes aren't happening faster. I haven't given up yet and I don't plan too! As long as there is always a new and exciting workout from Beachbody I am sure to keep going.

As for the health issues, well I was blown off again. Totally figures and left me feeling worn down. I decided it's time to jut take matters in to my own hands again so I ordered some new adrenal fatigue supplements. I plan to give them 1-2 months and if there is no improvement between that and removing gluten from my diet then I will go back and push to be listened to and taken seriously.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


I cannot believe I just said Holla! I kind of detest when people say that, or maybe it's just the Princess chicks from Happily Never After 2 (for which I was subjected to one night by the lovely Pixie). Now someone want to tell me where the last 2 months disappeared to?

My Hoopnotica training in Seattle was FAAAABULOUS! I learned so much, more than I would have had I opted for the cheaper distance training program. It was awesome to have the live feedback and have someone be able to say yes you are doing it right, keep doing that and it will click OR try this instead you may find it flows better for you. Truly a valuable class. I have since taught one 1-hour demo class at a semi-local gym. The space is small so classes are small but I think that will work out best for everyone, less pressure on me and more intimate for the students. I have another demo class coming up on Monday that I am just so excited for!

As for P90X well, things got crazy. Nate hurt his shoulder and had to drop out, kids got sick, I got sick, and I found it was just so darn boring without my workout partner to keep me challenged. And so at week 6, just like my 1st round) I dropped out. The difference this time is that I haven't stopped working out or minding my diet. The other difference, this round really made a huge impact on me. I gained some very nice muscle in my back & biceps and my cardio is through the roof! I can now run 2+ miles without huffing and puffing. I never was able to make it past week 5 on the C25K, now I am ready to train for a 10K, thank you Plyometrics & Tony Horton <3

In the interim I signed on to be a BeachBody coach which I am loving, mostly for the discounts ;) I love my BB products, Shakeology, Recovery drink, the workouts . . . all of it! And I love the connections I have made with other coaches, it's really inspiring.

While I am waiting for the husband to be ready to jump back in to the program I am starting another round of Brazil Butt Lift and hoping for better results this time. By the end (4 weeks) Nate should be ready to go and I'll be working a P90X/Insanity hybrid. Yea I may be insane but I really want to keep the cardio improving and balance out the resistance/upper body weight training of Tony with some kick ass cardio and legs a la Shaun T. After that I am thinking maybe TurboFire & RevAbs while I wait for the new P90X:MC2 to be released.

Speaking of better results, I may have finally pinpointed my own health issues and why I have struggled so much, including that where-did-you-come-from-20lb-gain-in-one-year issues. I check in Friday for my lab results but may need a few more blood tests run. If My gut is right then I have hypothyroidism which explains so much of the problems I have been having, all problems that so far have been written off by no less than 3 different doctors. If I am right (or heck if I am wrong and it's something else) then I'll be able to get myself taken care of and I bet then I'll tart seeing some kick ass results. I am sure since I am working against my body at the moment that that is the #1 reason results have been so hard to attain. But I won't give up!

So what are you doing to get fit and stay healthy this month? Remember that you are as important to take care of as everyone else and you should always make time to take care of you, even if it's only 30 minutes, just do it!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Happy New Year. . . 2 weeks late

I am so far behind in everything it seems these days. Life got pretty hectic around the holidays and we weren't even entertaining anyone or traveling anywhere!

I took a break from diet and exercise during that time and boy did I pay for it. My body was absolutely not happy with me and I ended up having some serious GI issues that kind of baffled the doctor. Amazingly enough once I was back on my regular routine my issues cleared up. Note to self, do not let holiday madness cause you to become "lazy" and let your health fail. Because, yea, that really sucked!

Now that I am back to normal I just finished week 2 of my P90X restart, even convinced my husband to join in so this is the end of week 1 for him. I decided to add an extra eek to my phase 1 so that we could stay in sync and workout together, I think it helps keep us both motivated and I looking forward to the many changes ahead for both of us!

I ca hardly contain myself with excitement over anticipation for next weekend. I'll be spending the entire weekend in Seattle for my Hoopnotica Hoop Dance teacher training. My course materials arrived yesterday and I am so thrilled! This is going to be such a fun and rewarding experience.

April will be bringing about even more excitement as I fly to NY for a 3 day weekend that includes my childbirth educator training workshop. Of course I will take some time to meet up with my Rav girlfriends and do some site seeing, eating and shopping :-)