Tag Archives: breakfast

Monday Morning Driveway Workout

Whoa! College football starts this week, and you better believe that the weather in Charlotte is gearing up for fall. With temperatures in the 60s the past two mornings, I have taken advantage of some outdoor workouts. Before I know it, I will be stuck in the basement doing workouts to stay warm! Today’s workout took approximately 30 minutes.

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I utilized two ten pound dumbbells and my driveway (which has a slight incline and is about 30 feet long). If you checked out my out of town workout, you should be able to follow what I did Monday morning pretty easy. The theme was “stacking”. That means I would start at the bottom of my driveway doing 5 repetitions, run up the driveway do 10, run back to start, do 15, run up the driveway, and finish with 20 (before restarting with a new exercise). Before starting the workout, place one dumbbell at one end of your driveway and one dumbbell at the other end of your driveway.

photo 4-19 Warm up – I utilized the length of my driveway to complete an active warm up. Start at bottom of driveway (where the incline begins).

  • Jog up the driveway and back.
  • Run up the driveway and back (so a little faster).
  • High knees up the driveway, jog back.
  • Side shuffles, left leg leading, up and back.
  • Side shuffles, right leg leading, up and back.
  • Butt kicks up the driveway, jog back.

Workout – Following the stacking progression described above, complete the following exercises sequentially. For clarification, I will go through the first exercise progression.

  • 5 pushups at bottom of driveway
  • Run to other end of driveway
  • 10 pushups
  • Run back to start
  • 15 pushups
  • Run to other end of driveway
  • 20 pushups
  • Run back to start

Complete the same sequence doing the following exercises:

  • Walking lunges – Hold dumbbell with both hands. I went up the incline of my driveway. Do the recommended reps for each leg, so 10, 20, 30, 40 total. You will likely have to turn around when you get to the higher reps. That’s fine. Run back to the designated spot (and yes, you will be running with a dumbbell in your hand).
  • Shoulder Taps
  • Squats (holding dumbbell with both hands)
  • Knee to Elbow Plank (5,10,15,20 each leg – 10,20,30,40 total)
  • Bicep Curls (5,10,15,20 each arm – 10, 20,30,40 total)
  • Triceps Extension (Hold dumbbell with both hands overhead. Lower dumbbell behind head until you get just below 90 degrees. Extend)
  • Kettlebell swings (with a dumbbell)

This is the kind of workout where I finished and my legs felt wobbly. I knew that I was going to be sore. As weird as this may sound, I love a good leg work out that makes me feel this way. Soreness at this level is my muscles getting stronger.

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After following up a three day run of teaching at Flywheel with a tough strength workout, I was ready to pack in a protein filled breakfast. I have been asked in the past few weeks to post one of my breakfast recipes, so here we go.

Ingredients

  • 1 English Muffin
  • 1/2 cup liquid egg whites
  • 1/2 slice pepperjack cheese
  • 1 banana (on the side)

I literally pour the liquid egg whites into a mug and throw it in the microwave.  Heat until cooked through (approximately 1 minute 30 seconds).  Slice english muffin in half. Using a toaster oven, place cooked egg evenly on open face of english muffin.  Layer with the cheese.  Toast until you reach desired crispiness (that means awhile for me).  You can clearly alter this recipe with toppings, cheese or even bread!

photo-46We are living off of one our summer chili recipes this week.  I posted a similar recipe when I first started the blog.  Lots of seasonings and extremely healthy!

photo 3-102I do want to take a second in this post to document a HUGE milestone for our sweet girl. She is walking!  Look at the pink sneakers:

photo 2-118I also want to share a funny moment from the weekend also involving my daughter.  I met my husband and daughter for breakfast Sunday morning after my Flywheel class.  That meant that my husband was responsible for getting our daughter dressed (including hair).  This was the result.  Bless his heart.

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Aruba – Our Happy Island

photo 2-45If you read my blog regularly, I’m sure that you noticed that I haven’t posted in almost a week. For the first time in almost two years, my husband and I took a “real” vacation. By “real”, I mean no phones, no computers, and no social media. In determining where we should go to escape, we wanted to stick to a place that we had been to before (so we wouldn’t have to do much planning) and we could ultimately blow through all of the remaining Marriott hotel points that I had left from public accounting.

IMG_1093Aruba it is. We have traveled to some pretty amazing places, but there are a few reasons why Aruba stands out to us.

  • Direct, affordable flight + a clean airport (it is hard to find a nice airport in the Caribbean)
  • English speaking, friendly natives
  • US currency is accepted everywhere – Yes, no currency exchange!
  • Gambling is legal – there are some really nice casinos, and I’m talking Craps, Roulette, and Black Jack (not just slots)
  • It doesn’t rain here – Average rainfall is 16 inches a year. Yep, pack the sunscreen; you will be in the sun A LOT!

Leaving our daughter for several days while we went away was the hardest part about the trip. Thankfully, my parents moved into our house to watch her while we were gone. Since we have been to the island before, we knew that we were going to be overwhelmed with some amazing (even healthy) food choices, but we also packed our workout gear because we knew that there were some great outdoor running areas. Over the next few posts, I plan to share with you some pictures and reviews of some of our amazing meals, plus our fun workouts.

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Let me start by saying that we were lucky to have stumbled upon the Marriott Stellaris Tradewinds Club. On our first trip to the island we decided to stay on the club level, and we enjoyed it so much, we decided to come back. Here are the details. To stay in the Tradewinds Club you have to pay a premium on top of your nightly amount. However, the premium includes all of the following that a regular room does not:

  • Complimentary breakfast – see pictures of my typical breakfast compared to my husband’s breakfast.  Like I said, you can make it as healthy or unhealthy as you want to!
My typical breakfast.

My typical breakfast.

My husband's typical breakfast.

My husband’s typical breakfast.

  • Complimentary lunch

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  • Afternoon snacks
  • Complimentary bottled waters (big time advantage in the heat), soda, and beers during the day.

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  • Evening happy hour (including a taste of specials from the hotel’s restaurant dinner menus, plus cocktails – wine, beer, and liquor)
  • Free internet
  • Private adult pool
  • Private beach area with optional beach hut and chairs

IMG_1102We did the math and we definitely won out here. Not only are the breakfast and lunch options good, but you can make both meals extremely healthy (or not). There was always a significant amount of fruits and vegetables at every meal. Not to mention whatever type of cold beverage that you wanted to take back to the beach for the afternoon (or morning).

IMG_1094The private beach in front of the hotel is pristine with little to no waves. You can literally pull a raft out into the ocean and not float away. In fact, I think the ocean might even be less choppy than the lakes surrounding Charlotte!

Since we hadn’t gone on a real vacation in years, we even took advantage of the spa and got massages. I will be the first to tell you that I don’t get massages often. I think they are awkward. Should I talk? What if I fall asleep? What should I wear? Yea, it’s not my thing. This place blew my mind. I set up a Bali (relaxing) massage at the Mandara Spa. Everything about this place is calming and somewhat euphoric. Even the smell when you walk in the door makes your shoulders drop (if you are someone who sits at a desk all day hunched, you know what I’m talking about). Relax. I felt like a different person when I left this place. This was exactly what I needed to force myself to settle into a day of doing nothing.

The transition area.

The transition area.

The selection of scents and scrubs for massages.

The selection of scents and scrubs for massages.

With my introduction of the island and our hotel, look forward to details about our meals and workouts throughout the next several days. While I enjoyed our time away, it does feel good to be back!

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Wells Fargo Championship + Weekend Updates

Wow, what an amazing weekend of weather in Charlotte.  We are right on the verge of summer. It’s not too hot and not too cold.  The Wells Fargo Championship was in town this week, so we spent both weekend days checking out the action.  Knowing I was going to be consumed by golf all day Saturday (and have a few drinks), I opted to stop by Flywheel to ride first thing in the morning.  I am biased, but this is the most effective and efficient way to burn a significant amount of calories in Charlotte.  Bring it Power Hour!

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We brought the baby to the tournament on Saturday.  As I am sure that many of you know, the hardest part about bringing a baby is making sure you pack everything.  We decided to bring the jogging stroller in hopes that she might sleep while we walked.  We were lucky enough to have passes to terrace seating.  Good and bad.  We had somewhere to sit that was comfortable, but we were right on the green (so I was constantly worried my daughter might yell in the middle of a putt).  Thankfully, we made it almost five hours with her at the tournament.

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Turkey sliders provided in the Terrace seats.

I do want to take a second to address food at the tournament.  If you spend all day there it is inevitable that you will need to eat.  In the terrace seats that we had, the food was AMAZING. Word on the street is that this food is even better than the clubhouse (it is subbed out).  If you can snag tickets to these seats they are worth it.  Unlimited drinks (most importantly water) and food.  If you just have a grounds ticket and are looking for food out on the course, they do offer fruit and yogurt at major concession stands.

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After pushing/carrying around baby for four hours, I began to realize that I didn’t need to do a workout prior to going to the tournament.  Walking the course with all of this equipment was a workout in itself.  Rolling, steep hills.  I will keep this in mind going forward since I hope this won’t be the last time we take our daughter with us.  The best part about the tournament is that we almost always run into people that we haven’t seen in a long time.

Sunday – That brings me to Sunday.  I taught my usual Sunday morning Flywheel class.  I can’t tell you how great teaching first thing in the morning is.  The first class that I teach after I ride with another instructor is always a tough one.  Riding in class allows me to get new ideas for my rides.  This morning’s ride was tough, but the riders responded well!

photo 2-33Post-ride we stopped at a local favorite, Toast, for breakfast.  How about an egg white veggie stuffed omelet, wheat toast, and some turkey bacon?  Hit the spot.

photo 2-34We left the baby at home Sunday while we went to the tournament.  We had terrace passes again, so we had a chance to enjoy a delicious lunch and snacks in the afternoon.

photo 4-14I got too much sun within the first hour of being there, so we spent a lot of time in the covered seats.  We had a great view of the golfers coming down the 14th hole, as well as, the 17th hole across the water.  Overall, we had a great time ultimately because our daughter behaved and the weather was awesome.  This is an event that we look forward to every year (it is sort of the kick off to spring in Charlotte).

 

 

Catching Up with Old Friends + Saturday workouts

photo 2-11Friday night was a rough night in our house.  Our daughter just had a hard time sleeping (I’m sure many of you can relate).  With that said, we were up early, so I figured I would go ahead and get all of my errands out of the way first thing. Perfect day to get an early start. The local Farmers Market opened this weekend.  If you don’t go early, it can be absolutely miserable trying to find a parking space and navigate around the market.  Since my dad was in town, he joined my daughter and I.  The saying, “My eyes were bigger than my stomach” was an understatement for me.  Everything looked SO fresh and delicious for half the cost of a supermarket.

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My daughter loved the colors, being outside, and quality time with grandpa.   I ended up spending over $50 on fruit and vegetables!  Hey, you can never get enough.  Okra is in season.  When you get okra peak season it is amazing.  We are planning an awesome recipe for this later today, so I will share it with you tomorrow once I take some pictures.

Workouts – People were definitely taking advantage of the weather outside, so the afternoon classes were less packed, but I have to say sometimes that is a plus.  My 3:45 Power Hour was absolutely intense.  With only about 14 people in class and everyone sitting close to the front, it was more like a training session than a class.  I was able to connect with each rider in a special way and adjust the ride based on the way they were feeling.  Communication back and forth was awesome and to be honest it really felt like I was working out with my good friends.  We were pushing each other harder because you could literally feel the energy from one bike to the next.  AWESOME group!

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Saturday evening, we stepped out of our routine.  We got invited to a co-ed baby shower for a former co-worker of mine, so we left the baby at the house.  I was already looking forward to the party because I knew that several of my favorite people would be there, but I couldn’t get over how great it was to see everyone.  I recently wrote a post on “Staying Fit During Busy Season” and it appeared that several of my former co-workers had actually lost weight since I had last seen them.  They looked awesome!  Several mentioned that they had started fitting exercise into their routine (even on the road).

Back to the party.  The soon to be mom looked AMAZING!  It was so great catching up with her.  Baby showers have taken on a whole new meaning to me now that I have a child.  I am actually interested in what the gifts are, and I feel that I have something to contribute to discussions about children.  I spent most of the night catching up with one of my former co-workers (Brittany).  She has been through more than I can imagine with her two boys, but she is so real.  It is so refreshing to be around someone who isn’t trying to be perceived as the perfect mom.  There is too much pressure on moms to do what someone else says is the right thing.

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This was not the party, but a throwback of the good times I have had with Brittany!

The party was catered by Pasta and Provisions.  I was surprised how great the food was.  They started off with some super simple caprese appetizers and served a salad with eggplant parmesan, lasagna, and chicken veinnese for dinner.   Everything was amazing, especially after two great workouts Saturday afternoon.

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That brings me to Sunday.  For whatever reason the studio had a great vibe early this morning.  They added a Flybarre class at 7:15, so there were definitely more people there than usual.  Andrea is instructing the new class time and she has this great energy about her that just draws people in.  Energy from riders was great this morning.  After my tough ride Saturday afternoon, I added some long, heavy pushes in the middle of the ride, that people just crushed.

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Sunday is our family breakfast day.  With all of the running around that we do all week long, on Sunday we go out somewhere and sit down for breakfast together. This morning we went to Toast.  After several tough workouts, I went a little overboard.  I did order a healthy omelette.  “The runner”.  Egg whites, roasted veggies, turkey, no brie.  Wheat toast. The potatoes are where I dropped the ball on healthy.  They are just delicious.  The best part about Toast is that they frequently send out buy one, get one half off coupons.  Just don’t chuck those val-paks that come in the mail once a month.