Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Another Fun Video

Here's a fun video from Craig Ballantyne - Diet vs. Exercise. Say it with me - "You can't out-train a bad diet!" :)

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Just For Fun...A Video

There's no contest this time around for TT Videos, but I decided to make one just for fun. I wanted to see if I could do a 1-armed push up by the end of the contest, so I filmed a quick movie each week. Did I achieve my goal? You'll have to watch...

Sorry, I removed my video.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Recipe Wednesday - Mexican Pizza Sandwich

This is part 3 of 3 in the series. The night I've been waiting for because I get to eat it! :) Tonight is the recipe for Mexican Pizza Sandwich. We will be combining the recipes from the last 2 weeks - Mexican Corn Bread and Mama's Pizza Sandwich - and making it just a bit more healthy.

Mexican Pizza Sandwich

Part 1:
1 pound (16oz) lean ground beef
8oz can tomato sauce (no sugar/no salt added if you can find it)
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
Sprinkle of salt and fresh ground pepper

Part 2:
8 oz neufchatel cheese, softened
4 large eggs
1 cup crushed pork rinds (about 1.5oz)
1/4 cup reduced fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup reduced fat shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (depending on how spicy you like it)
4oz can diced/chopped green chilies

Part 3:
8 oz can tomato sauce (no sugar/no salt added if you can find it)
1/2 cup reduced fat shredded sharp cheddar (divided in half)

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray a 9" x 9" glass baking dish and set aside. Get all of the ingredients out and ready to go.

2. Brown the ground beef until no pink remains. Drain. Rinse and drain to remove more grease if desired. Add the tomato sauce and spices listed for Part 1. Reduce heat and simmer.

3. While meat is simmering, place neufchatel cheese in a food processor. Pulse until smooth. Add eggs, 1 at a time, pulsing processor until smooth each time. Add the remaining ingredients listed in Part 2 and blend until smooth, scraping sides if necessary.

4. Spread about 1/2 cup of the neufchatel mixture in the bottom of the baking pan, just covering the bottom. Pour 1/2 of the can of tomato sauce listed in Part 3 into the baking pan, spreading over the neufchatel mixture.

5. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of the sharp cheddar listed in Part 3 over the sauce. Add the meat mixture in an even layer. Pour the remaining tomato sauce over the top and sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of cheese over the mixture. Pour the remaining neufchatel batter evenly into the pan.

6. Bake for 20 minutes. Increase the temperature to 425 degrees and bake an additional 10 minutes, watching closely the last 5 minutes so it doesn't get too brown. Let stand for 5 minutes before cutting.

This version is low carb, if you are watching that. There are lots of ways to change it up. You could use the "Mexican Blend" cheese or all sharp cheddar. You could use ground turkey instead of beef, poultry seasonings, and Swiss cheese for a completely different dish. Or use pasta sauce instead of tomato sauce, all mozzarella cheese and Italian seasonings for another flavor combination. Keep experimenting!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I Have A Diagnosis!!

Guttate Psoriasis. I went to a dermatologist today. He asked some questions. I gave some answers. He picked at my rash. SHA-BAM! He knew what it was! Hot diggity dog! Here's a link with a little more info about guttate psoriasis if you a really interested.

Apparently, guttate psoriasis often shows up after a strep infection. I had a really sore throat at the beginning of March, but never went to the doctor. Today, I got a prescription for penicillin to clear up the strep infection (because the rash seems to still be spreading) and a tub of ointment. The best treatment, though, supposedly is "narrowband UVB light treatment". So I may be undergoing this in the coming weeks. I'll keep you updated!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Monday Tattoo (and Rash) Watch

I can definitely see some fading now (finally!) Or maybe it's just the rash getting in the way! :)

I think the letters look thinner. And the tails on some of the letters are getting very light and have disappeared in a couple spots. Very exciting! I think I am going to try to get another appointment once this beast of a rash disappears.

And speaking of this rash....It's unbelievably itchy! It's worse now than when I first got it. It appears to be at an end stage where it all has dried out and is flaking off. When I scratch my stomach (Bad, bad, bad - I know!) it looks like I have dandruff - there are so many skin cells flying off!

It still looks like I have leopard spots. I hope it goes away soon! It seems like I wake up every morning and it looks a little different. Crossing my fingers that tomorrow it won't itch! I think I'll try an oatmeal bath tonight. I did that a few nights ago and it seemed to work well. I still don't know exactly what caused the rash. It's a mystery!! My 2 year old daughter says to me, "You got polka dots!"

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Final Turbulence Training Contest Pictures

Well, it wasn't the ending I hoped for. This rash looks terrible! But here are the final pictures for my 4th Turbulence Training Challenge. I have to remind myself that it's the journey and not the destination that matters. I am proud of what I accomplished in these past 12 weeks. I had my bodyfat % checked at the gym and it was measured to be about 16% so I am happy about that. I ended the third TT contest at about 17% bodyfat, but at a lower scale weight, meaning that I have definitely put on muscle. I am very happy about that!

Time now to take a little break and rest my muscles, probably for a week or two. I want this rash to clear up and to rest my body before embarking on another workout program. My journey will continue!

Have a great day!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Recipe Wednesday - Mama's Pizza Sandwich

Here, as promised, is the recipe for Mama's Pizza Sandwich. This is the original yummy recipe, handed down to me from....my Mama. Next week we will combine this recipe (with a few modifications) with the Mexican Corn Bread recipe from last week to make Mexican Pizza Sandwich. Yum....

Mama's Pizza Sandwich

1 pound ground beef
2 8oz cans tomato sauce
1 teaspoon oregano
2 cups baking mix (such as Bisquick)
1 egg
2/3 cup milk
8 slices American Cheese (such as Kraft Singles)
1/4 cup dry grated Parmesan cheese

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray a 9"x9" glass baking pan.

2. In a large skillet, cook the ground beef until no pink remains and then drain the fat. Add 1 of the cans of tomato sauce and the oregano and simmer for about 10 minutes.

3. In a medium bowl, mix together the Bisquick, egg, and milk.

4. Spread just about 1/2 of this dough on the bottom of the baking pan.

5. Pour the other 8oz can of tomato sauce onto the dough and spread evenly.

6. Place 4 slices of American cheese evenly over the sauce.

7. Place the meat mixture on the cheese.

8. Top with 4 more slices of American cheese. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

9. Top with remaining dough. Make sure to spread it evenly.

10. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

We usually cut it into 9 large squares. My husband and I have polished this off in one sitting between the two of us, but I'm sure it's supposed to serve 4-6. :) Not the most nutritious dish, but darn tasty. It's a family favorite from my childhood.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Monday Tattoo Watch

Today's tattoo watch has been interrupted by rash watch! I have a rash that is overtaking my body! I don't know exactly what it is. No new detergents, foods, etc. It itches like crazy and I can't take it anymore. I'm taking final pics next Saturday and I'm afraid that I'm still going to be covered in this horrible rash. Needless to say, I'm a little stressed out about it!!

I went to the to doctor this morning and she said it looked like "a reaction to something". NO DUH. She gave me 2 different medications to take and a cream to put on it. One of the side effects? Water retention. Great. Just great. I am so upset. I feel like I've worked really hard for these past 12 weeks and that I am totally cheated out of my final pictures. ARRRGGGGHHHH!!!!!

So, here is the tattoo now. Looking back at week 2 pictures, I think I might be seeing the beginnings of this rash, although I thought it was irritation from the tape at the time. Can't for sure that it is the rash, though. On the plus side, I can see definite fading in this picture! Or maybe it's just the lighting? Anyone else see any fading?

Now here's the rash. It's on my neck, arms, and legs. Sorry my head got cropped out. I don't take pictures of myself with the timer all that often. And I wanted to show it on my legs as well.

Here's a close up from over the weekend.

It's ALL OVER my stomach. I'll spare you that picture. :) Any dermatologists out there feel free to give me a diagnosis!

Off to put some more cream on before I scratch my skin off! Have a good night!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Week Eleven Update

I'm definitely starting to feel a little worn down, but only one more week to go - time to finish strong!

1. I will make every workout count
Workouts were pretty good this week. Turbulence Training for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks is a really good workout. I beat my time on Friday from the previous week. I wasn't sure I was going to be able to beat it, but I set up all the equipment I was going to need in one location and I think that helped shave some time off.

2. I will drink less diet soda
I have been consciously working on this and have reduced some. So I think that is a success!

3. I will weigh myself ONLY once per week

Did pretty good this week. Wasn't on the scale everyday and when I did weigh myself, I didn't let it concern me.

4. I will eat 1200-1400 calories per day on reduced calorie/carb days and 1500-1700 on refeed/higher days (updated goal)
Reduced days were: 1160, 1365, 1290, 1203, and 1240 calories; Refeed day was 1532 calories. A little low on one of my reduced days - that was Sunday and I'm always a little low on Sundays because things get pushed a little later and I have one less meal than on other days. Only one refeed day this week. That's just the way the high/low days fell. A little low on calories for that day as well. Otherwise, right in the range I was shooting for. Down 2 pounds this week, so right on target. If I had lost more than 2 pounds, I would adjust the number of calories.

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

Did well this week. No major treat meals this week, but I did have a piece of pumpkin cheesecake on Friday. We celebrated PI(e) day at work and I brought in my cheesecake because it's healthy and I know what's in it. Not to mention it's YUMMY.

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

Achieved everyday!

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

Working on fat loss now, so this goal is n/a.

8. I will not be neurotic with my diet

Much better this week. No really neurotic moments. I actually had a really good week and am feeling good about my goal of eating without first entering everything into fitday when this contest is over.

9. I will not be grumpy at my family

Had a pretty good week! I promised myself that if calorie/carb cycling made me grumpy I would stop doing it. My husband actually said to me this week that he thought I was holding up pretty well! :)

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

Got a little stressed this weekend, but now I'm ready to finish strong!

Here is the link to this weeks' TT Coaching Call. This week Craig talks about his new blog, his famous banana tacos, and lots of other great stuff!

Click here to listen to the fat burning coaching call

And here's the link to browse all the monthly Turbulence Training workouts, now on sale for only $10 each: Turbulence Training Workouts

Have a great week!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Recipe Wednesday - Mexican Corn Bread

OK, I promised a special recipe tonight. I have a really yummy recipe that I want to share, but it's actually the combination of 2 other recipes that I put together. The recipe is for what I call Mexican Pizza Sandwich. But, both recipes that I created it from are great recipes unto themselves. So, I've decided to have a 3-part series! First up will be a recipe for Low Carb Mexican Corn Bread. Next week, I will give the recipe for Mama's Pizza Sandwich. Finally, in the third week I will put them together for Mexican Pizza Sandwich (complete with picture, I hope!)

The recipe for Low Carb Mexican Corn Bread is adapted from Suzanne Somers' Somersize Recipe Contest Cookbook, Volume 2.

Mexican Corn Bread

8 oz cream cheese, softened (reduced fat or full fat)
4 eggs, room temperature
1 cup pork rinds, crushed
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup reduced fat shredded Mexican blend cheese
1/2 cup reduced fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
4 oz can diced green chilies

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Lightly spray a 9 x 13 glass baking dish.

2. Place the cream cheese in a food processor. Start it running and add the eggs one at a time. Stop the processor and add the pork rinds, baking powder, cheeses, spices and green chilies. Pulse to blend until smooth, scraping down the sides if necessary.

3. Pour into prepared pan and bake for about 20 minutes. Watch carefully the last few minutes.

This is great with chicken breast, served with salsa, or maybe guacamole if you like that sort of thing. (I don't like guacamole!) You could use all Mexican blend cheese, or all Sharp cheddar, if you don't want to buy 2 kinds of cheese. This could easily be changed up by adding different cheeses and spices.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Tuesday Workout

Ugh! Who wrote that mopey post last night? Yikes, I need a better proofreader! Today I am much more stoked. I got to the gym early, as usual. I can always tell I'm the first one to use the restroom because the seat is up and the water is blue, unless some radioactive man has been there, but I digress.

Workout this morning was great. Still working on my shoulders 1-2 times per week and I think I can really see progress. Personal best today on the deadlift at 100 lbs! I think I forgot to post that I had a personal best on squats over the weekend - 3 sets of 8 at 145 lbs. That completes 2 personal goals of mine - squat more than my bodyweight, and deadlift at least 100 lbs.

Today's Workout

55 lbs 1 x 8
95 lbs 1x 8
100 lbs 1 x 8

Superset #1
Standing BB Press (50 lbs) 3 x 8
DB Upright Row (20 lbs) 2 x 8

Superset #2
Lateral Raise (8 lbs) 3 x 15
DB Front Raise (8 lbs) 2 x 12

Abs Circuit
Kneeling cable crunch (120 lbs) 3 x 15
Stability Ball sit up with cross jab (5 lbs) 3 x 20 ea side
DB chop (10 lbs) 3 x 10 ea side

Have a great day!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Monday Tattoo Watch

I think I see some fading! Doesn't show up really well in the picture, though.

Sigh. I had a busy weekend and a rotten day today, and I just don't have it in me to type up my weekly summary. I've looked over my goals, and I think I did fairly well this week. Took pictures this weekend and was not impressed, but they were taken at 5:00am! Probably not the best time. :)

Have a good night!

Friday, March 6, 2009

A Whole New World

What a difference a week makes in the weather. It was 35 degrees and foggy this morning! So different from the ice and cold of last Friday. Man, I feel so much better today. My throat is still quite sore, but the body aches have pretty much disappeared. Makes such a difference!! I just feel like a million bucks today! I was so excited to go to the gym, I got there 5 minutes early. Then I spent 5 minutes talking to someone about TT so it all evened out. :)

This morning I completed Turbulence Training for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks, workout C. This workout has a funny name, but it's no joke! Took me 27:30 this morning. I shaved 2 minutes off my time from last week. I think the day off yesterday and the extra sleep did wonders for me. I felt so...liberated this morning. Kind of a funny word for it, but my body just felt so free from the aches and pains. It felt great!!

Just a reminder, you can now purchase most of the TT workouts individually. So if you are interested in fat loss, you could peruse the Fat Loss Workouts. If you are interested in muscle building, you could check out the Muscle Building Workouts. Or you could just check them all out HERE, including the new March Madness Workout!

Have a great day!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Recipe Wednesday...or Not

I'm feeling pretty awful today (refusing to acknowledge that it may be the flu). So, no recipe today. My brain can't think of one right now, and I don't think I have the stamina to type it up. Stay tuned to next week for a special one!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Lunch Bag Look-See

Here's a little peek in my bag I packed for work today. It's not a record number of containers or anything, just for fun.

On the left, from top to bottom, we have a mayo/mustard/green chilies blend (a la last Wednesday's recipe), to be rolled into the roast beef in the container below. Below that is Canadian bacon, then baby carrots. On the right, top to bottom, is 1/2 a tomato, turkey cutlets, egg whites and strawberries/raspberries.

That's all! :)

Monday, March 2, 2009

Monday Tattoo Watch

Well, it's official. My baby is preregistered for Kindergarten. I managed to sign him up without any tears. Sniff. Time sure does fly.

Now, about this tattoo. I've had a few questions about the procedure so I thought I would explain a little more about it. I had a laser removal, which is where a laser is pointed over the tattoo and all the areas are traced over. The tattoo absorbs the light from the laser and the pigment begins to break up. Then your immune system comes in and helps take away the pigment. The wavelength of the laser light can be changed depending on the color of the tattoo ink. My tattoo is just black, which is supposed to be relatively easy to remove, compared to blue or green, which are the most difficult. However, mine does not seem to be fading very quickly. Here is this weeks picture:

It doesn't hurt anymore, but it is still scabbing a little bit. There was one little tiny area that didn't seem like it wanted to heal, and even bled a bit just a few days ago, but it seems like it is healing now. It will take 4-6 weeks to heal, and I can't get another treatment until at least 6 weeks after this one. It will continue to fade as the weeks go by, at least, it's supposed to. I am still cautiously optimistic. I have, however, learned that when tape says it's "gentle", that's just code for "doesn't stick". :)

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Week Nine Update

Three more weeks to go! Another great week!

1. I will make every workout count
Workouts were terrific this week! Turbulence Training for Buff Dudes and Hot Chicks was a lot of fun this week.

2. I will drink less diet soda
Really did better on this one this week. Will reduce more this week.

3. I will weigh myself ONLY once per week

Down 2 pounds this week. And yes, I weighed myself more than once. But did pretty good overall.

4. I will eat 1200-1400 calories per day on reduced calorie/carb days and 1500-1700 on refeed/higher days (updated goal)
Reduced days were: 1587, 1615, 1453, 1543, 1580, and 1330 calories; Refeed day was 1768 calories. I only had one refeed day this week because my last one was last Saturday, and then I had a couple of moderate days before getting my high/low cycle on the right days. Next week I will have higher days on Monday and Friday.

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

Did good this week. Still following Precision Nutrition guidelines of starchy carbs in the post-workout window. No major treat meals this past week, but did allow myself a double size pumpkin pie protein shake as a little celebration when I finished our taxes.

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

Had a couple neurotic moments this week. The first one was while I was making turkey sausage casserole and I got distracted and added too much to one side of the dish. I was frantically trying to even it out! The second one was when my husband gave my son water from my water bottle that I left in the fridge. It was leftover from my workout in the morning, and I always finish off the bottle later when I get home from work. I know that bottle holds 24 oz, so I count it when I track my water in fitday. When I got home from work, I looked for my bottle and Hubby said he gave it to our son. I flipped out because I couldn't remember how much was left in the bottle. THAT was waaaay too neurotic!

9. I will not be grumpy at my family

Pretty good this week overall.

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

Getting excited now - only 3 weeks left!

Here is the link to this weeks TT Coaching Call. This week Craig talks about the new diet study that stated it doesn't matter which diet you use, it's only the calories that matter, TT 2K9 (great workout!), and the 3 foods you should never eat when trying to lose fat.

Have a great week everyone!