Saturday, February 28, 2009

Yoda and the Squat Rack

Today I had planned to sleep in (all the way to 7:00 am!) but was woken up at about 6:00 by my cat jumping on me. Since I usually get up at 5:00, I couldn't get back to sleep, so I just got up.

By 6:15 I was leaving for the gym to do a hodgepodge of workouts from a recent issue of Oxygen magazine. I've been trying to work on my shoulders a little more.

Superset #1
DB shoulder press (20lbs) 3x8
BB upright row (45lbs) 3x12

Superset #2
Lateral raise (10lbs) 3x10
Rear delt raise (10lbs) 3x10

Giant set #3 (Ab circuit)
Lifting side plank 3x15 ea side
V-sit 3x10
Single leg lift 3x15 ea leg
Toe touch (holding 10lb DB) 3x15

When I was done, I remembered that I had wanted to work on squats. I had planned to start at 75 lbs and do 3 sets, ending at 105 lbs. For whatever reason, I decided to start at 100lbs. I did 6 reps, and then decided to go for 110 lbs (6 reps), then 125 lbs (6 reps). After that, I normally would have stopped, but I suddenly had the urge to see if I could squat more than my bodyweight. I thought about it a minute, and that famous Yoda quote popped into to my head: Do or Do Not, There is No Try. So I went for it --- and had no trouble with 6 reps at 135 lbs. So I loaded up 140 lbs and squatted 6 reps there too. Definitely a Personal Best. Don't know why I didn't think I could squat that much - I've been holding out on myself!

After squats, I decided to walk on the treadmill for just a couple minutes. After 3 minutes, I got the crazy idea to practice my endurance and see how long I could run at 5 mph. The last time I tried this was on August 2, 2008, and on that day I made it to 19:30 before I had a really bad stitch in my side and had to stop. Today I went for 22:00! And the best part is, I could have gone longer, but I really had to pee! :)

Two personal bests today that wouldn't have happened if I hadn't decided to "Just do it". So get out there today and GO FOR IT!!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Great Fat Loss Workout for Hot Chicks

Winter is back - blech. Got a good warm up this morning scraping the SOLID SHEET OF ICE off of my car windows. Once I got to the gym, Turbulence Training for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks workout C was a great total body workout! That was the most I had sweat during a workout in a while!

There are 3 regular TT supersets with exercises like reverse lunges and DB rows and push ups, but you go through them all with NO REST. Then, to top it off, you do 4 sets of timed intervals, similar to what I posted about HERE.

Great workout! I just found out you can actually start buying the TT workouts a la carte for $9.95 each. Here's a couple links to the most recent ones I have used and loved!

TT 2K9
TT for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks
TT Mass Fusion

Or here's a link to ALL the TT Workouts you can purchase separately ==> TT Workouts

Check them out. You're sure to find something that fits your goals and your life!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Recipe Wednesday - Best Roast Beef Sandwich

This is a quick recipe for the best roast beef sandwich. It's scaled down from a recipe in The Busy Family Cookbook. This recipe is for 2 sandwiches.

The Best Roast Beef Sandwich

4 slices marble rye bread
1/4 pound sliced roast beef
1 Tablespoon light mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Dijon or yellow mustard
2 Tablespoons canned chopped green chilies, drained
2 slices Swiss cheese (reduced fat or otherwise)
butter for the bread

1. Lightly butter 1 side of each piece of bread. Take 2 slices of bread, place them butter side together, and set down.

2. Mix together the mayo, mustard, and chilies. Put half on each sandwich (on the non-buttered side).

3. Place the Swiss cheese and roast beef on top.

4. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Separate the buttered sides and place the one with all the stuff on it into the hot pan. Take the other half and put it on top, butter side up.

5. Flip the sandwiches after toasting for about 4 or 5 minutes and toast on the other side.

These are sooo good. I thought I had a photo from isfeasting, but I couldn't find it. You could use any kind of bread, but I think marble rye is particularly yummy in this recipe. Speaking of isfeasting, I need to start taking pictures again. I've been slacking!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Monday Tattoo Watch

Doesn't have the same ring as last time's Tattoo Tuesday, but I couldn't think of anything snappier. :)

The tattoo is still scabbing up so I have to keep it wrapped up all the time. It's a little inconvenient while I'm working out because it limits my range of motion just a tiny bit. When I look at it, it seems like it's faded, but when I look at the picture, I can't tell. Maybe it's just the lighting. My arm has some little red bumps where it's getting irritated from either the dressing, or the tape, or both. And it itches a little bit. I can't wait until I don't have to wrap it up all of the time. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for big changes this time around!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Week Eight Update

Only 4 more weeks to go! I am feeling very excited about completing this contest. I've had a great week and feel like my enthusiasm is gaining more momentum!

1. I will make every workout count
Workouts were great this week! Completed Turbulence Training 2K9 and am moving on to TT for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks!

2. I will drink less diet soda
Renewing my commitment to this one this week. Really going to work on it!!

3. I will weigh myself ONLY once per week

More than once this week. But I am not stressed about it. I am going to try this week to not weigh myself so much, though. Then hopefully I will get a nice surprise at the end of the week!

4. I will eat 1800-2000 calories per day on workout days and 1500-1600 on non-workout/light workout days (updated goal)
Workout days were: 2016, 1374, 1625, and 1664 calories; Non-workout/Light days were: 1490, 1692 and 1511 calories. A little low on workout days, but good on non-workout days. Since I am cycling carbs/calories now, I am aiming for 1200-1400 calories on "low" days and 1500-1700 on my "high" days, irrespective of whether or not it's a workout day. I am only going to do this as long as it doesn't make me too crazy (see goal #8).

5. I will eat cleanly, but will allow treat meals

Did good this week. My big treat was 3 "fresco-style" crunchy tacos from Taco Bell. I will probably not have any big treats from here on out. I want to finish strong! I am still following Precision Nutrition, although I haven't been posting my Feasts as often. Life has been busy and I haven't had as much time to upload the photos.

6. I will eat 5-7 fruits/vegetables per day


7. I will not worry about gaining extra weight while building muscle

I have officially gone into fat loss mode, so this goal isn't really applicable at the moment.

8. I will not be neurotic with my diet

Did good this week. No neurotic episodes! :)

9. I will not be grumpy at my family

I felt great this week. I got to bed early by making a new rule to have the computer off by 10:00pm. I didn't make it every night, but I did get to bed a lot earlier on average. Plus, my kids were sick this week, which actually helped me chill out. I had to put things on hold and just be Mom.

10. I will enjoy the contest and will not allow it to stress me out

Not stressed, but still getting nervous. Took some 8 week pictures this morning and I still have lots of hard work ahead of me.

This week's 7-day fat burning workout talks about TT 2K8, Craig's take on cardio, and the 10 best bodyweight exercises.

Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Recipe Wednesday - Chocolate Brownies

I made these for Valentine's Day and they were pretty darn good! I got the original recipe from Oprah and tried to make it a little more healthy. In hindsight, I probably could have reduced the butter and maybe used a little unsweetened applesauce or peanut butter. Next time!

Chocolate Brownies

1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup chocolate whey protein powder (about 2 scoops)
1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
4 oz dark chocolate (60% or greater - I used 70%), coarsely chopped
1 stick unsalted butter
3/4 cup Splenda (or other sweetener, or sugar)
1 Tablespoon brown sugar, packed
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon fresh grated ginger

1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease an 8 x 8" glass baking pan.

2. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, protein powder, cocoa powder, salt and cinnamon.

3. In a double boiler, melt the chocolate and butter together while stirring occasionally. You can make your own double boiler by placing a medium or large metal bowl over a medium sauce pan on the stove filled with a couple inches of boiling water. When completely melted, remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature (about 20 minutes).

4. Add eggs to the chocolate-butter mixture and whisk until just combined. Do not overmix. Add vanilla and ginger and whisk just a couple times.

5. Sprinkle dry ingredients into the wet and fold in with a spatula until just combined.

6. Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out with a few moist crumbs. The butter will bubble up as it's baking, but the brownies are not greasy. Cool completely before cutting and serving. (Good luck with that - I didn't make it!)

Makes 16 brownies, each with approximately:

141 calories
3.6g protein
9.8g fat
10.5g carbs
1.5g fiber

I got the grand idea to add carob chips to the batter to make the brownies chocolate chippy. Except I forgot to add them to the batter. So I just put them on top. Mistake. All they did was melt and I don't think they really added anything to the brownies, so I didn't include them here. I also added 3 packets of Stevia, but I thought they were a little too sweet so I left that out here as well.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tattoo Watch is Back!!

It's time once again to play (say it with me, Wheel of Fortune style) "Watch the Tattoo Fade"! Some of you may remember when I got my first tattoo removal treatment last fall. Yesterday I got a second laser treatment on my tattoo. The last day we played "Watch the Tattoo Fade" was Thursday, September 11, 2008. Here's how it looked then:

So here it is now 24 hours after another treatment. The Before picture was taken last week on February 7th. I completely forgot to take a before picture this past weekend.

Tune in next Monday for weekly updates! Crossing my fingers this treatment will work better than the last!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Week Seven Update

Week 7 is done, only 5 weeks left to go! Last week of Turbulence Training 2K9 this week then I will be finishing the contest with TT for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks. I know, funny name for a program, but I have heard really good things about it so far. It has extra supersets for those who want to build muscle, and of course I do! :)

1. I will make every workout count

Felt really good this week with my workouts.

2. I will drink less diet soda
Did just OK. Still too much. This one is proving to be very difficult.

3. I will weigh myself ONLY once per week

Again, another week where I was on the scale a lot. Not sure why. I think I just like knowing where I am. As long as I take it just as information and don't let it get to me, I think that's OK.

4. I will eat 1800-2000 calories per day on workout days and 1500-1600 on non-workout/light workout days (updated goal)
Workout days were: 1955, 1951, 2037, and 2863 calories; Non-workout/Light days were: 1494, 1619 and 1774 calories. That really high day was Valentine's Day. Had a couple treats in there. Pretty good overall, though.

5. I will eat cleanly, but will allow treat meals

Had several treats on Valentine's Day, but did well the rest of the week.

6. I will eat 5-7 fruits/vegetables per day

Missed this a couple days this week. Only had 4 last Sunday, and only had 4 on Valentine's Day.

7. I will not worry about gaining extra weight while building muscle

I didn't really worry about gaining or losing weight this week. I'm just keeping an eye on how things are looking and how clothes are fitting.

8. I will not be neurotic with my diet

Did fairly well this week. No really neurotic episodes that I remember! :)

9. I will not be grumpy at my family

Did better this week. It's amazing what going to bed a little earlier does! I felt better and it helped me feel less stressed.

10. I will enjoy the contest and will not allow it to stress me out

Still feeling pretty good, but I am getting nearer to the end. Gotta keep the diet in check!

Here's the link to this week's TT Coaching Call ==> TT Coaching Call
Or you can download them all from iTunes ==> TT Podcasts

This week Craig talks about Eat Stop Eat, TT 2K7, and quick ab workouts.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday Workout

Must be Friday, time for the DB 10 x 10 Circuit (AKA TT 2K9 workout C). For whatever reason, I didn't feel like going to the gym this morning. And I didn't feel like doing this workout. But I made myself get up, telling myself that I only had to do 3 circuits instead of 4. But once I started doing the workout it felt great and I completed all 4 circuits with my best times yet! I used 15 lb DBs for all exercises.

DB 10 x10 Circuit

DB Bulgarian Split Squat (4x10 ea side)
DB Shoulder Press (4x10)
DB Step up (4x10 ea side)
DB Chest Press (4x10)
DB Row (4x10 ea side)
DB Lunge (4x10 ea side)
DB Swing (4x10)
DB Shrug (4x10)
DB Incline Press (4x10)
DB Squat (4x10)

First round: 4 min, 46 sec
Second round: 4 min, 25 sec
Third round: 4 min, 19 sec
Fourth round: 4 min, 17 sec

And don't forget that today is the last day to take advantage of Ballantyne's Day. heehee :)

Here's the link to the "I Love My Abs" sale going on until 10pm EST tonight: I Love My Abs!
This special offer includes the Turbulence Training Home Abdominal workout programs and bonuses of TT 2K9, the new TT for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks plus much more (including 3 months free to the TT Members' forums!)

I've used the TT Home Abdominal workout program (Intermediate and Advanced) and liked them both very much!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Recipe Wednesday - Buffalo Burgers

I don't think I've posted a recipe for this yet. Correct me if I'm wrong! It's a very simple take on hamburgers using ground buffalo and tofu.

Buffalo Burgers

1 pound ground buffalo
3-4 oz lite firm tofu
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 packet dry onion soup mix
fresh ground pepper, to taste

1. Mix everything together in a large bowl. Be sure to shake the packet of onion soup before you divide it in half. The dried onions usually are on the top, and the seasoning is on the bottom. You could use the whole packet, but I find the taste a little strong.

2. Divide the mixture into 4 burgers and cook in a pan, on a George Foreman grill, on an outdoor grill - however you like to cook your burgers.

3. I like to top it with a Tablespoon of salsa, but top it with whatever you like!

One burger, without toppings, with my particular brands, has approximately:

143.2 calories
26.3g protein
2.4g fat
2.25g carbs
0g fiber

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Happy Ballantyne's Day?

Craig Ballantyne is declaring this weekend to be Ballantyne's Day! LOL

To celebrate, he's giving you TWO free workouts (including the workout I am currently using, TT 2K9, and the workout I plan on using next, TT for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks) and 25% off his NO-crunch Turbulence Training for Abs workouts. Plus, you'll get 3 months free to the TT Member's site for even more workouts and you'll be able to ask him your personal workout and diet questions.

Check out his "I Love My Abs" Ballantyne's Day sale here:

Turbulence Training for Abs

The sale ends on Friday, February 13th!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Week Six Update

I took some 6 week comparison pictures on Saturday and I was not impressed. I will really have to work hard to get to where I want to be by the end of this contest. Only 6 more weeks to go!

1. I will make every workout count

Had another great week with Turbulence Training 2K9. Getting a little tired of taking my kettlebells to the gym though! :) My next program is going to be the February Workout of the Month - TT for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks! I will start that in 2 weeks. :)

2. I will drink less diet soda
Did well on some days, not so well on others.

3. I will weigh myself ONLY once per week

I was all over the scale this week! Not sure why. Just found myself on the scale all week.

4. I will eat 2000-2200 calories per day on workout days and 1600-1800 on non-workout/light workout days (updated goal)
Workout days were: 2611, 2008, and 2187 calories; Non-workout/Light days were: 1545, 1835, 1895 and 2151 calories. A little high again on the non-workout/light days. This next week I am slashing calories, but not too much, as I don't want to lose muscle. I am aiming for closer to 1500-1600 on non-workout/light days, and 1800 on workout days. Although, I am also beginning to cycle calories/carbs, so I may be a bit high or low depending on the cycle. I am trying to take into consideration whether or not it is a workout day.

5. I will eat cleanly, but will allow treat meals

Did well this week. Still using all my new Gourmet Nutrition V1 recipes (from Precision Nutrition V3). Yum yum!

6. I will eat 5-7 fruits/vegetables per day

Achieved everyday except for Friday, depending on the definition of a serving. One of my servings was a cup of cauliflower. If I count that as one vegetable, I only have four for the day. If I say 1/2 cup is a serving, then I count it as two and I achieve my minimum of five. Hmmm....

7. I will not worry about gaining extra weight while building muscle

Didn't worry about gaining weight this week!

8. I will not be neurotic with my diet

Did pretty good this week. I did print out the nutritional information and brought it to the restaurant we went to this weekend, but I don't find that too neurotic.

9. I will not be grumpy at my family

I did awful. I was a grumpity grump!! :(

10. I will enjoy the contest and will not allow it to stress me out

Not too stressed this week. But starting to feel the pressure of not having the results I was hoping for by this point.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Weekend Challenge Workout

Thanks to Andy for coming up with this week's Challenge Workout on the TT Members site!

I started this just before lunchtime today (big mistake). My kids started having their "It's-almost-lunchtime-and-we're-starving" meltdowns so I only got in 4 sets. (The challenge was to do as many sets as you could in 20 or 30 minutes, depending on your fitness level.) That was a darn good workout though! My legs were really burning. I did 30 seconds of rest between sets.

First round - 4:18
Second round - 4:08
Third round - 4:08
Fourth round - 4:11

Total time, with rest - 18:19

Squat Jumps 4 x 6
Mountain Climbers (fast) 4 x 15/side
Burpees with Jump 4 x 10 reps (These really were tiring!)
Regular plank hold 4 x 30 seconds (Ahhh...a short rest)
Squat jumps 4 x 6 reps (Again? Oy, my legs!)
Crossbody Mountain Climbers 4 x 15 reps/side
Jumping Jacks 4 x 60 reps
Bike Crunches 4 x 30 reps/side
Alternating Reverse Lunges 4 x 10/side

Good workout, Andy!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Recipe Wednesday

Today's recipe is for tuna pancakes. Yes, I said tuna pancakes. Stay with me here. ;)

Tuna Pancakes
6 oz can of chunk light tuna in water, drained
1 egg
1 green onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons ground flax
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce (optional)

1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl.

2. Pour onto a hot griddle that has been sprayed with nonstick spray. You can pour it all at once and make one big one (spread it out a little so it's not too thick) or you could pour it into 2 or 3 smaller pancakes.

3. Cook on one side for a few minutes until it begins to brown on the bottom. Flip over and cook on the other side for a few minutes.

I like these with just a sprinkle of salt, but you could probably use a little sour cream, if desired. I probably wouldn't put syrup on them though! :)

Here's a picture of one big tuna pancake. I served it with broccoli.

The entire recipe has:

271 calories
35.5g protein
11g fat
6.7g carbs
4.5g fiber


Sunday, February 1, 2009

Week Five Update

Five weeks down, seven left to go! Here's my weekly summary. I'm starting to feel much more relaxed. I am glad I am reflecting on these goals every week. I think it's been really helpful!

1. I will make every workout count

Had a great week with Turbulence Training 2K9. Really liking that program so far!

2. I will drink less diet soda
Did better this week, but still too many. This is a tough one, but I will continue to work on it.

3. I will weigh myself ONLY once per week

This week went well. I weighed myself on my normal days of Monday and Saturday and maybe one other time. I should probably change this goal to twice a week. I weigh on Monday because there is something about starting the week with a weigh-in, and I weigh on Saturday because my last day of the contest will be on a Saturday.

4. I will eat 2000-2200 calories per day on workout days and 1600-1800 on non-workout/light workout days (updated goal)
Workout days were: 1906, 2138, 2039 calories; Non-workout/Light days were: 1314, 1985, 1984 and 1956 calories. A little high on most non-workout/light days but I am happy with the week overall.

5. I will eat cleanly, but will allow treat meals

Did great this week. All these new Gourmet Nutrition V1 recipes (from Precision Nutrition V3) make me feel like I'm getting treats everyday! Consequently, my snacking was at a minimum.

6. I will eat 5-7 fruits/vegetables per day


7. I will not worry about gaining extra weight while building muscle

Didn't worry about gaining weight this week!

8. I will not be neurotic with my diet

Did well this week. I followed the PN rules and felt good. Still weighing and measuring everything, but how else can I enter it into fitday? My true goal, after the contest, is to be able to eat without having to run it all through fitday first.

9. I will not be grumpy at my family

I think I did pretty good this week. :)

10. I will enjoy the contest and will not allow it to stress me out

Another great week!

Here is the link to this weeks TT Coaching Call: TT 7-day Fat Loss Guide. This week Craig talks about Vision Boards, working out when you have no motivation, and whole grains in your diet.

Have a great week everyone!