Thursday, June 27, 2013

Wednesday Workout with the help of FitFabCities

Yesterday I spent a long time looking at some of my favorite exercise-focused websites, and realized that I really like workout infographics. It's helpful having everything all in one printable graphic. It's even better when it includes little cartoons of some of the exercises, but that isn't absolutely necessary. I told Joey that I was spending way too much time searching for some, and he told me I should make my own. Then even better, he turned one of my workouts into one! How great is he??

Using his template, I'm going to try to do that for all of my future workouts, as well as update my previous ones once I get the time. I would also like to have a second graphic, that includes detailed descriptions of the actual exercises, so anyone can just print out those 2-3 pages and be set. That last part might take longer to implement.

The above picture is what I did last night. I will say first, that printing takes a couple of steps, but is still really simple. You just save the image, open it in preview or adobe acrobat, and then print. It should be formatted to fill up the entire page (using 8.5x11 paper).

I used a lot of workouts from FitFabCities last night. She has a ton of great workouts, and hopefully won't mind that I'm posting some here. (You get all of the credit, Caitlin!)
Most of her workouts give the option of going through 1-3 times, depending on your level. I decided to do 3 of her workouts once through, followed by an Abs workout. Because of that, I had a decent amount of repetition, but not in a bad way.

Here's some information about how I did the workout last night:
I started with the pullups/dips (no extra explanation needed there). I then did Total Body - 1. I used 10lb DBs for the squat press and biceps curls. I used a stability ball for the triceps dips, and don't think I would do that again. It was really hard to get a grasp on it, and I felt like I didn't get as much out of it as I could. She recommended using a chair or bench, so totally not her fault.
Next I did Glutes/Abs. I used a stability ball for the glute bridges and pulses, as recommended, and it worked out well. I liked that you didn't need any equipment for the rest of it, and you probably could do the glute bridges without the stability ball.
I did Total Body - 2 next, and that did require some equipment. I used 10lb DBs for the bent over rows, side lunge with touch, and squat press. I again used the stability ball for the dips because I didn't have any better options right there with me. This was the only plank that I did in pushup position, the rest were done on my forearms.
I ended with the Abs set. I used a 10lb DB for the Russian twists - if I had more weights with me, I would have used a higher weight. I just didn't feel like dragging out more than I already did.
General thoughts - I liked doing 3 sets once through, instead of 1 set 3x through. It mixed it up a bit more. Although, that requires a lot more planning. If I'm coming up with all of the workouts myself, it might take some time. This was also a new method of organization for me. I especially noted that in the Glutes/Abs set, the body parts being utilized were not alternating. In other words, it didn't do a glutes exercise, followed by an abs exercise. Basically the first half was glutes, the second half was abs. It definitely makes you feel the burn!

Joey thinks that I'm almost ready to do an unassisted pullup! I'm not so sure about that. He thinks by the end of next week - I'm thinking at least a few weeks. Since I've done 3 workouts with 70lbs assistance, I'm going to try 60lbs assistance next week. Joey thinks that I should try to do a regular pullup each time I'm at the gym now. And then if I can't do it, move onto the assisted.

For dinner we did a repeat of Monday night, but I seasoned the tilapia with lemon, dill and butter instead of the brown sugar/mustard combination.

Question to anyone who is actually reading this - do you like the way I put my workout in one image? Is it helpful to you? Would you actually print it out and take it to the gym with you?

Side note - I've been STARVING today! It doesn't help that I woke up before 6. I was in lab around 6:30, had a frozen breakfast sandwich (english muffin, egg, cheese for 210 cal). Then had coffee and a giant blueberry muffin leftover from yesterday's lab meeting, around 8:00. Was still hungry after that so I had some tea. Then had breakfast #3 around noon - greek yogurt with berries, jam and granola. Had lunch around 4 - sandwich on wheat bread with tomatoes, lettuce (from the garden!), caramelized onions and mushrooms, avocado, spicy mustard and gouda cheese. I'm still hungry now...I hate long days...

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

KB Workout: Monday, June 24th

Yesterday was my mom's birthday! Happy birthday Mom!!

I'm still trying to figure out a gym routine. I now have 3 gyms to choose from, all with varying levels of convenience, and types of equipment. I went to my old gym, the AFC, last night. I planned ahead and packed a bag to bring to lab. At the end of the day, I took the bus straight to the gym, and changed in the locker room. Then Joey gave me a ride back after we were both finished. It worked out pretty well, but it's dependent on both remembering to bring everything I need, and being on the same schedule as Joey. There's a bus I could potentially take back home from the gym, but it's a 20 minute ride, and I don't know how often it runs in the evenings.

Anyway, this is what I did at the AFC last night!

Assisted Pullups:
70lbs assistance: 4, 3, 2
As soon as I finished the last set, I changed the weight to 90lbs assistance and did 7 more

Assisted Dips:
90lbs assistance: 5, 5, 5

I used a 20lb KB for all of the KB exercises. I started with the 10-2 ladder, and did that one time through. Then I moved onto the level 2 card, and did 2 sets of strength and 2 sets of tabata. I followed that up with 3 sets of 3 gets ups with a 7.5 DB. Then I did the Ab set. My hips completely locked up during the Ab extenders so I didn't make it through all 10...

Between the 10-2 Ladder and the Level 2 card, Joey came over to check my progress. It's been a while since he's seen me do any KB exercises, and I wanted to make sure I was doing them correctly. He said for the most part I was doing everything right, which was good. Then he tried to teach me some new things. I'm still struggling to figure out the Snatch. Every time a card says to do snatch, I substitute American Swings. I'm getting closer to it, but still not quite there. He showed me how to do American Swings with a turn, which adds a little extra movement into it. He also showed me how to do Swing Catch - something I had done with  DB (modified slightly) in one of our last sparty sets. It's definitely more complicated with a KB - you start with a swing, and then toss it towards you so the grip rotates. Then you squat and press, and toss it back to grab and finish the bottom portion of the swing. I think I got the hang of it - it's one of those things where you can't be afraid of it.

After Joey finished up in the hot tub/sauna - without me because I forgot my suit :( - we went back home and got dinner started. He steamed some carrots, yellow squash and green beans for us, and microwaved a couple of potatoes (russet for him, sweet potato for me), and I made mustard and brown sugar tilapia again. I've been adding just a dusting of cayenne, so I get the sweet and spicy flavor in the mustard.

Later I was still a bit hungry, so I took a slice of my sandwich bread (some kind of whole wheat whole grain thing) and topped half of it with homemade strawberry jam, and half with chestnut butter. Delish.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Workout: Friday, June 21st + random other things

I was going to do a sparty workout on Friday. By the time I got home, and dealt with some moving related things, I was just too tired to deal with it. I hadn't planned one out yet, and didn't really want to. Joey was on his way out to his first frisbee tournament, and suggested I just do a short run at our gym. It wouldn't require any planning or effort, and it would make me feel a lot better.

He was right. I felt so much better after. I actually started to feel a lot better during, and ended up doing a bit more once the run was done. I did 2 miles on the treadmill, starting at 5.8 and ending at 7.0 (just for the last bit). I then did 4 sets of lat pull downs. The weight was a lot different from what I typically use at the AFC. At the AFC I usually do 60 or 70lbs. I started with that, and it just felt crazy easy - I had to up it to 110 or 120 lbs. I did 2 sets of close grip and 2 sets of wide grip, alternating, and did 10-15 reps for each.

I followed that up with a set of abs - 50 crunches with feet down, 50 crunches with feet up, 50 left side crunches, 50 right side crunches, 25 v-ups and 10 ab extenders.

Saturday morning I got up really early to sign up for the Charlottesville Women's 4 Miler! It supports the UVA Breast Care Center and breast cancer research, and is only for women. It filled up in just 5 hours! Since clearly my sub 55 min 10k training plan has gone out the window, maybe I'll start training for this race. I know I can do 4 miles, but it would be really great to try to pick up my pace. I know that I can do around 8:30-8:40 for a 5k. I will first have to try to repeat that - I only did that once, and it was super early in the morning and on a really flat course. Then I'll try to keep that pace for 4 miles. Finally, I'll try to bring down that pace. I can maybe start with trying to keep that pace over a slightly longer distance, and then pump up the pace a bit. My big goal would be to finish the race with a 8:00 pace, but that's a pretty lofty goal. I don't think I've ever kept that pace for more than a mile. This just means I have to keep up with (slash get back to) the running!

Just to put it out there - if anyone is interested in sponsoring me for the race, please let me know! It's definitely for a good cause.

Also, here are a few things I ate in the past few days:

Salad - Variation #1
Just a repeat of the salad I had the other day

Pesto tortellini (TJ's) + roasted shrimp + caramelized mushrooms and onions + parmesan cheese

Fried eggs on rye bread with sliced gouda
The egg on the left was perfectly runny, the one on the right got cooked through but was still delicious

Saturday night I went out with a few friends to Horse and Hound for dinner. My beer was delicious - I successfully found the beer I loved when I was there 2 years ago! We got a set of 12 beers for a tasting flight, and I loved one, but forgot the name. While waiting for my friends to show up last night, the bartender asked what kind of beer I liked and then guessed I might like a particular one. He was certainly right! Not only did I like it, but I recognized it as the mystery beer from two years ago. It was the Belhaven Scottish Ale. 

My dinner wasn't quite as satisfying. I had been snacking during the day, so I decided to get a salad. I got the "Spiced Butternut Squash Salad," which was described to include lentils, goat cheese, roasted squash seeds, arugula, and bitter orange vinaigrette. I should have thought more about it - the salad was definitely bitter, but that should have been expected. The vinaigrette was described as being bitter, plus arugula itself is definitely bitter. I was mostly disappointed by the sparseness of the lentils - I was expecting to have equal amounts of lentils and arugula, but it was more like an arugula salad with a few lentils scattered throughout. Oh well, serves me right for not being hungry enough to order something I would have enjoyed a whole lot more.

Garden Update 6/22/13

Our garden has moved! That move was just slightly behind the actual move. There are still a few things left at Joey's old house, but mostly everything is at the new place. The original plan was to put everything on our covered balcony, but then we realized that it didn't actually get very much (if any) sun. I noticed that the path to our front door was large enough, and the plants shouldn't be disturbed since it goes only to our door. Luckily enough, this area does get sun.

We lined everything up against the front rail so it could all be in the sun

Rainbow Swiss Chard, getting really big! Some of them are almost ready

Veggie/Herb Box #1

Broccoli - only the one wasn't eaten by the little green caterpillars

Parsley - this is doing much better this year than last!

Veggie/Herb Box #2

              Two bell pepper plants - the one on the                                Roma tomato plants       
             right is getting shadowed by the tomatoes. 

From left to right: 
Top: Cinnamon Basil, Sunflower, Dill
Bottom: Rosemary, Roma Tomato, Chives

Big tomatoes - still not doing great. We have 4 tomatoes growing, but they haven't done much in the past few weeks. We also haven't had any new tomatoes form. All of the little buds died. 

The separated roma tomato plant that is doing great!

Herb/Veggie Box #3

                          Thyme - doing pretty well                                       Scallions
                     Little basil plants doing quite well                  Little eggplants. They might need
                                                                                            to be transplanted

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Weekly Finds: 6/23/13

Soft-Cooked Eggs on Cheesy Skillet Hash I've been obsessed lately with soft-cooked eggs, and this is a new way to incorporate them into my breakfast! A basic hash of potatoes and onions is topped with cheddar cheese, and then eggs are placed on top to just barely cook.

Crispy Zucchini Grilled Cheese with Dijon Horseradish Aioli This is such an indulgent grilled cheese, with really unique flavors. Zucchini is breaded and then fried (or baked for a healthier version), then sandwiched between multiple layers of cheddar cheese, aioli, and bread. This could be dangerous...

Southwestern Wheat-Thins Homemade wheat thins, made with whole wheat flour and homemade taco seasoning. I hope these are as simple as they look, because they look like the real thing!

Corn Risotto-Stuffed Poblano Peppers A unique take on risotto, with beer instead of the typical white wine, is made with fresh corn and Monterey Jack cheese, then stuffed into charred poblano peppers and topped with queso fresco. This sounds like the perfect use for garden fresh corn and peppers. The fact that it came from the Smitten Kitchen cookbook is just one more reason to make this ASAP.
Quinoa Tabbouleh, Texas Style A quinoa salad made with jalapeno, cucumber, tomatoes, leeks and fresh herbs.
Sesame Crusted Tofu As the author of the recipe describes, this is the perfect combo of healthy (tofu, obviously) and unhealthy (pan frying), with a delicious dipping sauce.

Spinach and Roasted Beet Salad with Berry Vinaigrette The star of this salad (in my opinion) is the dressing - made with jam, two kinds of vinegar, and olive oil, it would dress up any salad.

Blueberry Cheesecake Pie A gingersnap cookie base is topped with a cheesecake filling, followed by blueberry pie filling - the best of both worlds. The blog writer calls it "dessert for dudes" but I think I would like this more than my boyfriend would!
Salted Chocolate Truffle Cookies These cookies are brownie-like in texture, and have a bit of salt sprinkled on top for that sweet n salty combination everyone loves. I love that they use melted chocolate and chocolate chips for even more chocolatey goodness.
Strawberry Peach Cobbler with Almond Biscuit Topping This recipe combines the best parts of a strawberry shortcake and a peach cobbler into one dessert. Fresh strawberries and peaches are lightly sweetened, and thickened with tapioca flour, then topped with tender biscuits made with almond meal.
Vanilla Bean Caramel Ice Cream I love caramel, and that is the main ingredient in the ice cream custard base.
Honey Lemon Cupcakes with Honey Cream Cheese Frosting These cupcakes sound delicious - described as the perfect combination of sweet and tart, topped with rich cream cheese frosting. The lemon helps lighten them up a bit, so they're perfect for summer.
Blueberry Lime Cream Cheese Pound Cake Blueberries, lime and cream cheese are a fantastic combination - I know this because the best ice cream I've ever made included all three of those. In this recipe, fresh blueberries create a swirl in a pound cake that is kept moist with the addition of cream cheese.
Black Pepper Panna Cotta with Red Wine Strawberries I'm so fascinated by panna cotta. This one is enhanced with the addition of black pepper, and then topped with strawberries bathed in a red wine reduction.
Peach Thyme Skillet Cake A simple cake that is cooked in a cast iron skillet, and takes advantage of summer fresh thyme and peaches.
Rhubarb Plum Crumble Rhubarb is always combined with strawberry, so it's refreshing to see it paired with a different fruit! 

Health and Fitness:
"Obesity is a disease" The American Medical Association recently recognized obesity as a disease, instead of a "major public health problem." I agree with the author of this article, in that this will hopefully force physicians to make treating obesity a bigger priority, but that by calling obesity a disease, people may be more tempted to look for "quick fixes" of prescriptions and surgery instead of lifestyle changes.

Funny Things: This is hilarious - over the top cooking and food decorating I'm pretty sure I've seen all of these, and now I really want to watch some of those again. And now I'm really sure I want to watch all of the Saved by the Bell

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

KB Workout + Dinner

Today I tried something slightly different for my gym routine. The AFC is out of the way from both lab and home, which is why I worked out at the gym by my apartment on Monday. That was really convenient, but it's a small gym with zero cell reception and limited equipment. In order to do a KB workout, I need to go to a gym that has them. I'll eventually buy myself one (or two) but for the time being, I have to go to the AFC or Mem Gym. Mem is actually perfectly on the way for me, which I realized today. I took the bus there straight from lab, took about 5 minutes. Once I was done, I caught the bus home, again about 5 minutes. It's a lot smaller than the AFC, and definitely not as well ventilated, but it has KBs!

As soon as I finished up in lab, I headed over. Joey and I thought that there was an assisted pullup machine there, but after looking around in the weight room for a few minutes and feeling pretty silly, I realized that they do not in fact have one. I'll have to figure something out for those, I'm pretty close to doing a real pullup, but I still need the assisted machine to help me out. After leaving the weight room, I went back to the "combative room," which is where the KBs and free weights were. It's a strange room, mostly meant for sparring and punching a bag. I felt like I was in the way most of the time, but oh well.

KB Workout:

Level 2 Card with 20lb KB
30 seconds on, 15 seconds off
Go through list 2x

American Swings (2x, since I was replacing Snatches for left and right)
Goblet Lunges
Clean and Press, left
Clean and Press, right
Goblet Squats

KB 300
I did this again, to try to beat my time. And this time I actually did the half burpees during it (Joey forgot to tell me to do them last time until I was done).

25 Pushups
25 V-ups
50 Half burpees
50 American swings
50 Clean and press (25/arm)
50 2-arm swings
50 Mountain climbers

I beat my time by a lot! I finished in 16:50, more than 3 minutes faster than before. I realized that I was putting more effort into the v-ups than was necessary, and sped through the mountain climbers a lot more quickly than I did last week. Now I have a new time to beat.

I got home earlier than I expected, and had time to pull together dinner. Joey wanted roasted potatoes, so I did a mix of russet potato, sweet potato and rutabaga. It was really yummy :) Even though it took a while to cook!

Recipe: Rosemary Roasted Root Vegetables
From: Me
Yield: 2 large or 3 medium servings

Root vegetables of choice (I used 1 GIANT sweet potato, 1 medium russet potato, 1 small onion, halved and sliced thinly, and 1/2 medium rutabaga)
3 tbsp oil
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary

Preheat oven to 450. Line a large baking sheet with foil.
Scrub all veggies really well. For potatoes, the skins can be left on. I peeled the rutabaga because the skin is pretty waxy. Chop all veggies into ~1 inch cubes.
In a large bowl, toss veggies with the oil until everything is coated. Spread out on the baking sheet, and sprinkle with herbs and spices.
Cook for ~40-50 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to make sure nothing is sticking.

All of the veggies laid out and seasoned

10 minutes in                                                        20 minutes in

30 minutes in                                                        40 minutes in

Dinner is served!

Yummy crispy potatoes

Salad for lunch

I typically have a sandwich for lunch every. single. day. Sometimes that is boring. Sometimes I don't have enough supplies to put on my sandwich, and it's really pitiful and then I'm hungry 45 minutes later. Joey has been having a salad for lunch twice a week, and I decided to give it a try. We went to Cville Market over the weekend, and I bought two containers of spring mix. They sell small amounts of lettuce (for really cheap) in big plastic containers. I got 2.5 oz spring mix for $0.72, and it was a lot of lettuce, while still having plenty of room for add-ins. Last night, I went through the fridge and made a goody bag of salad mix-ins. Today, I put them all in the container and topped with some salad dressing, and chowed down. It was really yummy! I'm sure it costs less than my sandwich, especially because I can just scrounge in the fridge for anything we have around.

Salad, version 1:
From: Me
Yield: 1 lunch-sized serving

2 1/2 oz spring mix
2 small radishes, sliced (from our garden!!!!)
1/4 cup zucchini, chopped
1/4 cup green pepper, chopped
2 oz crumbled feta
1/2 cup imitation crab chunks
3 tbsp fat-free Italian dressing (what I found in my lab's food fridge)

Mix everything together and enjoy! If preparing this in advance, don't add the dressing until right before eating.

305 calories
12.2 g fat
32 g carbs
3.6 g fiber
16.7 g protein

I enjoyed it along with 1 stick of string cheese (we saw one that had jalapeno and bell pepper and had to buy it, it's pretty good) and a scone.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

New Gym

I tested out the gym at my new apartment last night. I realized once I got to lab, that getting to the university gym would be difficult. It's on the other side of campus from my apartment. Since I didn't pack any of my stuff, I would have to go 1 mile+ home from lab, get changed, drive 2 miles right through campus at the busiest time, and then drive back. If I had planned ahead, I could have taken the bus to the gym from lab, and caught a ride home with Joey. Anyway, I decided to switch workout days, and do kettle bells on Wednesday, and a Wednesday workout on Monday. I'll eventually have to buy some kettle bells so I'm not as dependent on a gym. Joey has some of his own, but I don't think I'll ever be able to use 50lb kettle bells...

The gym is part of the "Madhouse," which also has a business center, a movie theater, and a hangout area complete with a kitchen. It's really convenient that it's right next to my apartment, since I can use the gym whenever I want. It's small, but it has 3 treadmills, 3 ellipticals, and 3 bikes, as well as free weights from 5lbs to 50lbs, and a few weight machines. I made sure my entire workout could be done with body weight or DBs, since I didn't think they had any medicine/stability balls (and I was right). The only bad thing about the gym is that I get ZERO reception in it. This is including 4G on my phone, which means I won't ever be able to listen to pandora or any streaming music while I'm there. 

This is what I did!

"Wednesday workout" for Monday June 17th:
45 seconds on, 30 seconds off
Go through the list 3 times, taking a 2-3 minute break between sets

Lunge with twist: 20lb DB
Triceps dips (using the end of a workout bench)
Split squat - left side: 20lb DB
Split squat - right side: 20lb DB
Russian twist: 20lb DB
Bridge with leg lift - left
Bridge with leg lift - right
Triple crush: 2 10lb DBs
Pushup position row
Thrusters: 2 10lb DBs
One-arm swing - left: 15lb DB
One-arm swing - right: 15lb DB

Monday, June 17, 2013

Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits in the new apartment

Sunday morning was our first morning in the apartment. We decided to make our first breakfast there a special one, and that could only mean homemade biscuits. We bought the ingredients on Saturday, but didn't really think through the process. In order to make them, Joey had to locate the flour, the cheese grater, the parchment paper... We couldn't find the pastry blender, and it was too difficult to setup the mixer, so I mixed them by hand. Turned out just fine! I also decided to add some of the cheese right on top of the shaped biscuits, rather than putting all of it in the dough. Joey was very happy with that decision, saying the tops reminded him of an asiago bagel in the best way possible.

Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits
From: Shutterbean
Yield: 12 biscuits

2 cups all purpose flour + more for rolling
1 tbsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
12 tbsp unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), diced and kept cold
1/2 cup cold buttermilk, shaken
1 egg
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar (reserve a small handful)
1 egg, beaten with 1 tbsp water

Preheat oven to 425 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and salt. Add in the butter, and mix in with your fingers until all of the butter pieces are no larger than a pea. It works well to just smash each butter piece and keep re-incorporating.
In a measuring cup, add the egg to the buttermilk and beat lightly. Pour into the flour mixture, and stir until just combined. Toss the cheese with 1 tbsp of flour, then add to the dough, stirring just a few times. It will be very wet!
Dump out onto a very well floured surface, and turn over a few times to incorporate the flour. Pat it into a rough rectangle. Using a dough scraper, cut it in half lengthwise, then across into 6 sections, for a total of 12 pieces. The end pieces may be a bit smaller or oddly shaped.
Place the biscuits on the lined baking sheet, and brush with the egg wash. Top with the reserved cheddar, putting a few shreds on each biscuit.
Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. (Mine took 22 minutes exactly)
Let cool for just a few minutes, then enjoy!
Once completely cool, leftovers can be wrapped up and kept at room temp for a few days.

We enjoyed ours with scrambled eggs

Nutrition: (per biscuit)
226 calories
15.3 g fat
16.9 g carbs
0.6 g fiber
5.5 g protein

Workouts: Sparty on Friday + Running on Sunday

Last Friday, I did a sparty workout with Joey and his friend Mariusz, on the lawn in front of Mariusz's house. It was pretty warm out, so I wore spandex shorts and a tank top. Turns out that wasn't the best thing to wear...

I started by getting a bunch of bug bites. Thankfully, Mariusz had bug spray that prevented more bugs from biting. Some of the stations required me to get down in the grass (example - the ab stations), and I started to get pretty itchy. I kept asking Joey if he was sure that I didn't have any bug bites on my back, since my back was really itchy and I could feel some bumps. He said I just had some irritation from the grass. It was a good thing he didn't tell me what was really going on, because otherwise I wouldn't have been able to finish the workout. Once I got home, I saw that every inch of exposed skin on my back and shoulders was covered in welts that were criss-crossed and overlapping. Some areas had a few scratches, and those were even worse. Of course I started freaking out, and jumped in the shower. We applied a liberal coating of Cortizone Cool Relief gel, followed by Aveeno Eczema Therapy Moisturizing Cream (my new favorite things). Hours later, it mostly just looked like I had a sunburn, since the swelling had gone down, but the skin was still red.

I'm just so sick and tired of being allergic to nature. Even though I know none of these reactions are serious or life threatening, I still freak out every time. It also is insanely uncomfortable.

Anyway, this is the workout we did:

Spartacus-Style Workout:
10 stations, 60 seconds at each, 15 seconds between
Go through twice

Inbred cousins: 10lb medicine ball
Swing catch: 15lb DB
Ab extenders
Side lunge with touch: 10lb DBs
Squat jumps
High pull with 2 10lb DBs
Crunch with hold
21 guns with 2 10lb DBs
Walkout plank with pushup

The only one I counted was inbred cousins - and I did 15 each set.

Then we did cards - basically each of us took turns picking a card from a standard deck. Joey picked twice, since we wanted to have 4 picks each turn. We stopped when we each had 7 cards. These were the rules for the cards:
Hearts: Squat Catch - do the number on the card, with jack=11, etc
Diamonds: Burpee - do the number on the card
Spades: V-Ups - do the number on the card
Clubs: Calf Raises - 2-6=10/leg, 7-10=20/leg, face card=30/leg

The idea is to try to do each one as quickly as we can, and move onto the next. If we picked two of the same thing in a row, we put the second one aside for the next turn. Otherwise it's pretty painful.

Totals: in ~16.5 min
65 Burpees
49 Squat Catch
46 V-Ups
180 Calf Raises/leg

On Sunday, Joey helped convince me to go on a run. He mentioned it the day before, and I asked if I could join him. Then he ended up having to drag me out of bed (not quite literally, but almost) to get me to do it. I think the main reason we went on the run was so we could eat biscuits later with less guilt - more on that in another post.

We ran 3.7 miles in ~36 minutes, here is the route below:

Weekly Finds: 6/16/13

Mixed Grains Bowl with Scallions and Sauteed Radishes An easy way of cooking several grains together, topped with sauteed scallions, radishes, and radish greens. We are growing all of those, so I will have to try this out! I also love the idea of the pilaf as a great way to use up little bits of grains you have in your pantry.

Goat Cheese Guacamole A unique take on guacamole, featuring goat cheese, chives, sundried tomatoes, and lemon juice.
Honey, Ricotta and Berry Muffins A great way to use up some leftover ricotta - creamy muffins sweetened with honey and studded with fresh berries.
Lemon Blueberry Scones Easy scones with lemon and blueberries. I love that you can use fresh or frozen blueberries. I'd love to make this part of my Sunday morning ritual!
Cinnamon Honey Scones A completely different take on scones. Here, butter is cut into the flour as usual. But then MORE butter is added as a mix-in, and it's a cinnamon honey butter. It leaves beautiful swirls and must taste incredible. Of course then it's topped with a honey butter glaze.

Sweet Yeast Bread with a Cream Cheese, Fresh Cherry, and Crumble Topping A beautiful sweet bread that is unique in the fact that it's a yeast bread (not a quick bread), topped with tangy cream cheese and sweet cherries.

Flank Steak with Blue Cheese-Honey Nectarines and Basil-Buttered Corn A great way to grill everything in your meal - flank steak with a red wine vinegar marinade, sweet and salty nectarines, and fresh corn enhanced with an herb butter. The flank steak is obviously just for Joey's benefit, but I would totally eat the nectarines and corn.
Margherita Pizza Wheels Individual servings of pizza with tomato, mozzarella and basil.
Mushroom Rice Fritters with Lemon-Dill Sour Cream I love mushrooms. They are best when cooked with onions, thyme and white wine, and this recipe does something very similar. Then they are combined with rice and pan fried until crispy. The sauce sounds wonderful, there's just something about lemon and dill together that brightens everything they're served with.
Dill Pickle and Potato Soup This sounds a lot like a soup Joey made a couple years ago! Dill pickle is the star of the soup, and is complemented by potatoes, onion, carrots, and swiss cheese.

Crispy Baked French Fries Fries are seasoned generously, and baked on a rack to ensure they get crispy on all sides. I'm not sure that the liberal coating of olive oil makes them much healthier than the fried version, but this is most certainly easier to make.
Honey Mustard Veggie Kebabs with Garlic Quinoa Who says grilling is just for meat? Veggies are marinated in a honey, mustard and greek yogurt combination, and then grilled to perfection. I usually find grilled veggies to be overrated, but this marinade sounds wonderful.

Cardamom Cherry Ice Cream This ice cream pairs the flavors of cherries, cardamom and vanilla bean with a rich custard base. It sounds (and looks) amazing. I would perhaps try using whole cardamom and infuse it into the custard, instead of ground.
Old Fashioned Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies Exactly what the title promises - these peanut butter cookies have the classic criss-cross, and a chewy interior thanks to the strict instructions to not overcook! They stay nice and thick due to the dough being chilled.
Vanilla Peanut Butter Chunk + Chocolate Crunch Ice Cream Oh my. This is a coconut+vanilla ice cream, studded with chunks of peanut butter goodness, drizzled with a chocolate syrup. Delicious
Citrus Angel Food Cake with Peaches A basic angel food cake is brightened with citrus juice, zest and extract, and served with a luscious peach compote. This will be made once peaches are in season
Peach Berry Buckle I think peaches and blueberries are one of the best combinations. This cake combines the two, and is topped with a crumble topping.
Baked Banana Donuts with Brown Butter Glaze Baked donuts with banana and buttermilk are coated in a brown butter glaze. Alliteration anyone?

Redhead in Bed A delightful combination of fresh strawberries, citrus vodka, lime juice and sweet wine. Sounds like the perfect summer drink.

Strawberry and Meyer Lemon Marmalade A sweet and tart combination of fresh strawberries and meyer lemons creates a spread that doesn't require the use of pectin.

Buttermilk Biscuits with Sausage Gravy Joey loves biscuits. I've made them a few times for him, but I haven't attempted to make gravy yet. Maybe this will be for a special occasion :)

Cooking Tips:
Cooking Substitutions Really informative infographic of different substitutions for flour, sugar, fat, and more.

Dinners from last week

Here are some pictures of the yummy dinners I had last week:

Wednesday, June 12th: Steamed veggies + roasted shrimp + microwaved sweet potato (and soyaki sauce) + sauteed green beans

I'll have to post the recipe at some point for the green beans, they're so delicious. We end up making them slightly differently every time, but the base recipe stays the same.

Friday, June 14th: Breakfast for dinner! Sliced feta in brine + roma tomatoes + scrambled eggs with spinach, onion, pepper and mushrooms + toast

On Saturday, we tried out a new restaurant since we got a deal on living social - El Tepeyac. It's supposed to have Mexican and Salvadorian food. It was really yummy! Everything felt much more authentic than any other Mexican restaurant in town, and everything was clearly homemade, even the tortillas. The deal is actually still going on, if you're in Charlottesville you should definitely get it! I got the enchiladas poblanas and Joey got the bistec de lomo. Here's the link:

Belated Post - Garden Update (from 6/15/13) + Yogurt Parfait

We moved on Saturday! Yes, I know I already posted about moving. This was the second move in 2 weeks, but is also the final move (at least for the next year). Even though the place is a mess and I don't know where anything is, I'm so happy!

In the midst of moving, I remembered that Saturday was going to be garden update day. I rushed outside to take some quick pictures of the garden. And then promptly forgot about it until now! Anyway, here they are:

Kumquat Tree

Bottom: Cinnamon Basil, Right: Sunflower       Left: Dill, Bottom: Roma Tomato, Right: Rosemary
                                                                           Top Left: Radishes, Top Right: Chives
Tomato plant with 4 baby tomatoes growing!

Left and Top Right: Roma Tomatoes; Bottom Right: Bell Peppers

Top: Broccoli (being destroyed by green wormy things); Bottom: Parsley

Top: Buttercrunch lettuce on left, Thyme on right
Bottom: Swiss Chard

From left to right: Eggplant, Basil, Scallions, Thyme

After part one of our move, I made myself a yogurt + fruit + granola parfait. I was curious how much of everything was going in, so I weighed (and tared) it as I added it (and then took step-by-step pictures of the process)
 Cut-up fresh strawberries

 Diced mango

 Blueberries (freshly picked)

 Raspberries (also freshly picked)

Homemade strawberry jam

Fage 2% Greek Yogurt

Homemade granola

Since I had the exact measurements, I could get a pretty accurate estimate of the nutritional information. Of course the jam is a guess.

475 calories
11.3 g fat
82.9 g carbs
9.3 g fiber
22.2 g protein

Not bad for a post-moving snack/lunch!