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Thursday, June 30, 2011

Ready Steady 60

As promised, here's my latest 60 minute spin ride.
I'm pretty sure I've already posted the 45 minute version, but I'm not sure.

Since I needed to make a cuing sheet for this ride, I just took a screen shot of the file and will insert it as an image.  Hopefully you're able to read it without issue.

This is the ride I'm known for.  Or rather, my use of Ready Steady Go is what people know.

As usual, happy spinning!

Blueberry Lemon Streusal Bars - OMG!!

These bars are OFF THE HOOK.  Seriously.
This is one of the best recipes I've made and it's perfect for BBQs or any summer occasion.  Plus, right now, blueberries are everywhere (and on sale!).

It's far from healthy but that's OK on occasion. 

Since these are super sweet, I cut them in to small bites as opposed to squares as the recipe suggests.

Blueberry Streusel Bars with Lemon-Cream Filling

1 cup unsalted butter, softened; more for the pan
3 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick oats)
1-1/3 cups packed light brown sugar
1 tsp. table salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 large egg, separated
14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. grated lemon zest
2-1/2 cups room-temperature blueberries, washed and drained on paper towels

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9x13-inch metal baking pan with foil, leaving a 1-inch overhang on the ends. Lightly butter the bottom and sides of the foil.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, oats, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Using your fingers, blend the butter completely into the flour mixture. Transfer 2 cups of crumb mixture to another bowl and reserve for the topping. Blend the egg white into the remaining crumbs and then press the mixture into the bottom of the pan to form a level crust. You can tamp it with the bottom of a measuring cup to even it out. Bake the crust until it starts to form a dry top, 10 to 12 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the condensed milk, lemon juice, lemon zest, and egg yolk. Let this mixture stand for 5 minutes; it will begin to thicken.

Sprinkle the blueberries evenly over the hot crust and then drop spoonfuls of the lemon mixture over the blueberries. Spread gently with a spatula to distribute a little more evenly, but take care not to crush the berries; it’s fine if the lemon mixture isn’t perfectly even. Bake until the lemon mixture just begins to form a shiny skin, 7 to 8 minutes.

Sprinkle the reserved topping over the lemon-blueberry layer, pressing the streusel between your fingers into small lumps as you sprinkle. Bake until the filling is bubbling at the edges and the topping is brown, 25 to 30 minutes.

Let the bars cool in the pan on a rack until just warm, about an hour. Carefully lift them out of the pan using the foil overhang and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Remove the foil and cut into 24 bars when cool. The bars may be stored at room temperature for a few hours but otherwise should be kept in the refrigerator.

If you make these, please leave me a comment with your thoughts.  I promise, you won't be disappointed.

Maybe it's the next exit?


I'm hoping that the next exit off the highway takes me out of Rut City.  I'm hopeful that it will but I won't know until it happens.  It if works, great.  If not, I'll just get to see another part of Rut City before eventually finding the exit that takes me away from the city.

I'm feeling a bit better about this.

So let's see, still no gym yesterday, but I did get my hair did, which always helps a bit with the self esteem.  Those pesky grays were back in full force, so it was my genius stylist to the rescue.  It was just a color, no cut.  Although earlier in the day during my "i'm' so bored with myself" phase, I once again toyed with chopping my hair to a long bob.  To be continued on that one.

In the world of blogging and social networking, there's a ton of sharing (and sometimes over sharing).  I will admit that sometimes reading of someones accomplishment makes me feel bad about myself.  Not horribly bad, but just bad enough to spur a bit of jealousy.  I guess the big issue is what you do with those feelings.  Do you channel them in to something positive to make yourself feel better or do you wallow and only sink deeper?

For me lately, these posts have been about running.  "I completed my first half marathon",  "I signed up for a 10K", "I just got back from a 4.5 mile run".  You get the idea...
I know these comments are bothering me because I'm not running (or doing much of anything).  So in an attempt to turn a negative in to a positive, I started digging around for some races and found quiet a few.  So I'm going to sign up.  I know I am physically able to do the running, so hopefully this will get the mental side going as well.  Fingers crossed!

I'm thinking about making a pretty considerable overhaul after the holiday weekend.  I haven't decided for sure, but the thoughts are bouncing about.  I will keep you posted on that one.

And to leave you on a more positive note, I'm toying with making two of my favorite recipes this weekend for the BBQ.  Orzo with Roasted Vegetables and Blueberry Lemon Streusel Bars, which I thought I had posted on this blog, but apparently not.  Give me a few minutes and I'll post the recipe.

I will be back later with another 60 minute spin ride.  Yay!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Rut City

Good morning!

Sorry I've been a bit MIA, work has gotten in the way.  The nerve!

But I'm here now.  Can you believe that this weekend is July 4th weekend?  I can't!  What happened to June?

In true Jessica fashion, it's shaping up to be a doozy of a weekend.  My parents are coming up for a visit Friday afternoon.  Saturday I have a wedding to go to about 1.5 hours away, so we're staying over.  Sunday a few neighbors in the complex are hosting a group BBQ (myself sort-of included).  And then Monday, oh Monday, my plan is to hardly move my butt from my chair at the pool.  I just want to do nothing.  Nothing.  If anyone invites me to a BBQ, I'm going to say no.  :)

All that said, I've been in a bit of a rut.  I just feel blah, my motivation is shot, and I seem to be tired ALL the time.  I had planned to go to the gym every day this week.  Well, it's Wednesday and I've been exactly zero times.  I'm mad at myself for not going, but really I'm more mad at the fact that I don't feel up for going.  I love the gym yet I just can't seem to find the energy to work out.  I'm trying to take it easy on myself and trust that maybe my body knows what is best for it, but it's hard.

While ruts suck, the good thing is that they do pass.  We've all been there.  So hopefully with a little positive thinking I can tell this rut to GO AWAY!

In the mean time, I decided to take off from work on Friday because I want to.  I want to be able to sleep in, lounge around and do what I want.  I think I need it, especially given how chaotic the weekend is bound to be.

On that note, time to work and be productive.  Happy Hump Day!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Spin wit me

That's so me!  I love working out in leotards.

After two years of teaching only 45 minute spin classes, it's been a little involved to transition to a 60 minute class.  Or rather, it's been involved to transition my music to 60 minutes.

Don Juan said "just add three more songs in and you're done".  Yes.  In theory it is that simple.  In actuality, it's way more involved since my rides already flow.  Messing with a flow can get messy.

Last Wednesday (I think) I spent several hours putting together a new 60 minute ride that built on an existing ride.  Then for my Saturday class I knocked out a few songs and took it back to a 45.  I'm going to post the 60 but call out which songs I took out for the 45.

I called this a greatest hits ride as it pulled a few elements from past rides, including the lovely Hill Repeats from Annette.

So here we go....

Who Dat Girl - Flo Rida featuring Akon - 3:20
Warm up

Sweet Child of Mine - Guns N' Roses - 5:56
First set of hill repeats.  Climb for 5 minutes, then flat road/downhill for the final 0:56.  I usually do 2 minutes in the saddle, 1 in standing 2, and the final 2 in 3.  I also play around with when I add resistance making sure not to go past an 8/10.  (wow, lots of numbers in this description)

Dance Dance - Fallout Boys - 3:00
Same hill as the last song, but pick up the pace and ride it in 3 minutes.  Same movements and resistance, just faster legs.

Crazy - Gnarles Barkley - 2:59 (omit from 45 minute version)
Let's recover a bit.  Once you start to feel ready, pick up the pace and add a small amount of resistance.

Wanna Be Startin' Somethin' - Michael Jackson - 6:02 (omit from 45 minute version)
Hill repeat #2.  Once again, climb for 5 and then flat/downhill for the final minute.  For this one I started with a 5/10, got it up to an 8/10 mid way, stayed there for a minute, and then progressed back down to 7, 6, 5.  This way they had no excuse to not pick up the pace on the 3 minute version.

Amazing - Seal - 3:02 (omit from 45 minute version)
And again, mimic the last hill but with more speed.

Animal - Neon Trees - 3:32
Short recovery right in to sprints.  if you're not ready, sit out the first one and join in when you are.  Sprints on the chorus, there are 3 of them.

Float On - Modest Mouse - 3:30
Time to jump!  We're jumping for the next two songs. Take up to a minute to get them ready, load up to a 5/10 moderate hill and then get started.  I mix it up between 8, 6, and 4 counts to keep things interesting.

Gettin' Over You - David Guetta - 3:06
Continue with the jumps.

City of Blinding Lights - U2 - 5:50
Last hill repeat.  Climb for 5, downhill/recover for :50.  I was doing this climb in the saddle, adding resistance every minute or so.

Magic - B.o.B. featuring Rivers Cuomo - 3:16
Repeat the hill above, staying in the saddle.  However for the final minute I do encourage them to get out of the saddle to really pick up the pace.

oops, don't have the song title - The Jackson 5 - 3:06 (omit from 45 minute version)
Recover.  Again, start to pick up the pace as you feel ready.

Bring Back the Funk - Krafty Kuts - 3:14
Final hill (it's not a hill repeat).  Climbing in the saddle, nice pace, 5/10, add every minute or so ending around a 7/10.

Moves Like Lady Jagger - Maroon 5 and Christina vs Modjo - 4:44
Let's finish this hill.  Transition to a standing climb.  I pick up the pace on the chorus and then have them jump (4 count) on the Lady verses.  Feel free to improvise but just end heavy and fast.  :)

For some reason, the hill repeats kill me.  Then again, every ride has been kicking my butt lately.  But this one does a great job of really bringing my heart rate way up.


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thank you PB


I think the blog world is an interesting place.  There are tons and tons of blogs.  A person could spend hours (if not more) reading through blogs on his/her topic of interest.  It's crazy!

I'm amazed when I see some of these blogs and how many followers they have.  Even when I read their stories about how they started out with five readers, I'm still not convinced that it happens like that.  But that's besides the point.

These bloggers are almost like celebrities.  Almost.  I say this because I know their names yet they have no clue who I am.

To send this point home, I'm going to throw out a specific thank you to Julie at Peanut Butter Fingers.  I know she has no idea who I am but I know who she is and her blog helped me out this morning.

As you know, I purchased a vitamix and was so excited about the prospect of endless smoothies.  Well let's just say my first few attempts were just eh.  I could get them to taste good but I ended up adding so much stuff that I was probably also loading up the calorie content.

On Julie's blog she has posted a ton of smoothie recipes, so I thought..."why re-create the wheel when I can work off a recipe that someone else has already mastered?"

So this morning when I was craving a smoothie I grabbed the ipad and pulled up one of Julie's recipes.  Of course I didn't have all the ingredients but I did my best.

1.5 cups almond milk
1 cup frozen strawberries
1/2 banana
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
1 tablespoon-ish raw almond butter

And the result?  It actually tasted good, as in really good and way better than my past attempts.  Don't get me wrong, it wasn't perfect but it was well on it's way to being a smoothie I'm proud of.

So thank you Julie and the blog world!

Perhaps one day my random little blog will help someone else out.  A girl can dream.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A tasty treat

I'm really trying to be good about my eating.  But since I LOVE to eat and have quite the sweet tooth, it can be hard.

I have no problem passing on butter, cheese, cream sauces, fatty problems are bread and desserts.  I smile just thinking about them.

On a lunchtime trip to Trader Joe's I decided to look for a sweet treat that isn't that bad.

I found these...

Trader Joe's Mini Cafe Twists - and the best part is that each twist is only 30 calories!  True, you probably won't eat just one, but if you can limit yourself to two or 3, you're in good shape.

They're non-dairy, butter free, no eggs, and no yeast, yet they still taste good.  Guess that's in part due to the sugar.  Each twist has 1g of fat.

The ingredients are wheat flour, soybean oil, palm oil, beet sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

I wonder what beet sugar is...
Apparently all processed sugar is made of sugar beets or sugarcane.  US labeling does not require that the products call out the source.  From what I can tell, both are equally void of nutritional value and the only difference is that beet sugar may have slightly different properties when baking.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

It's about time

I feel good today.  I feel encouraged that I'm back in my routine and ready to get my life back to normal.

However, I did not feel so hot last night.  I promised myself that I'd go to the gym yesterday after work.  Now rewind with me a bit.  I usually bring lunch, but yesterday I wasn't feeling anything in the fridge, so I went out to pick something up.  I got a soup and half sandwich from panera with baked chips.  Lunch was fine, however I always get hungry around 3pm and need a snack.  I had finished up everything in my snack drawer and didn't think to buy anything so I was SOL.  So I drank my water.

My energy level kind of fell but I kept going.  I got to the gym, attempted to run. Fail.  Tried the arc trainer and started out OK, but my energy faded and I could hear my stomach growling.  Squeezed in a bunch of strength stuff, which wasn't so bad, but as soon as I stopped I felt like I could have lay down on the floor and napped.

Moral of the story?  You must eat enough to be able to work out.  Without a doubt I could feel that my body was not performing well because it was hungry.  So of course I fixed that when I got home.

Don Juan to the rescue!  He cooked up some mahi mahi fish tacos and I enjoyed those and overdosed on guac.  So good!  I should probably start taking pictures of his concoctions.

So even though my workout was just eh, I feel it today and am encouraged.  Hopefully I brought enough food to fuel me at boxing tonight.  I haven't been in over a month and am ready to take out some frustrations on the bag.  Bring it!

What's in your workout future?

Monday, June 20, 2011

Totally random product review

Ever since I saw the ad in a magazine, I've been intrigued by the Sally Hansen Salon Effects nail polish strips.  I was drawn to their fun patterns and the promise of a long lasting product.

If you're not familiar with the product, here it is on the Sally Hansen website.

The product's claim is that it's ready to go (no dry time) and long lasting.

On Friday night, I picked up a box.  Here's the result (ignore my gross fingers)...

Can't fully say why I chose the zebra pattern, but it looked fun.

The verdict?  OK.

They're a little pricey (I paid $8.50 at Walmart).  It comes with an application kit that includes a nail file with 3 finishes, and an orange stick.  They were easy to apply and didn't take too long.  However, I've only had them on for 3 days and am already seeing a few chips.  Since the pattern is so busy, it's not a big deal, but still.  I can't imagine these lasting 10 days but I will definitely hang in there for as long as possible.  Overall they seem pretty durable.

On one or two nails I chose a size that was a little off, so there's a slight gap of undone nail between the polish strip and my skin.  Again, it's not really something that one would notice unless they were closely inspecting my nails.

After my gel polish experience, my nails were beat down.  I do like this because it covers up my nails and encourages me to leave them alone.

Apparently these can be removed with standard nail polish remover and shouldn't do any damage to the nails.

Have you tried these?  If so, what did you think?

I hope it's not manic

Good morning and happy Monday!

I hope everyone had lovely weekends.  Mine was definitely very nice but it seems like it flew by, as usual.

I'm hoping to make today the start of my get my act together week.  I'm hoping to get back to normal eating habits and daily trips to the gym.  Since it's a priority, it should be do-able.  Plus, this week seems pretty light in terms of social obligations.

On Saturday, class was great.  As I've said before, the numbers had fallen a bit due to the summer, but the core group was back in full force (almost) on Saturday and it felt good.  Post-class I made the traumatic switch from being a blackberry user to a droid girl.  It's been interesting, especially because I now feel like an idiot. :)

Sunday, Carlos and I headed to NY to spend the day with my family for Father's Day.  As I've mentioned before, the boy really can cook.  The plan was for him to teach my dad how he makes his ribs.  That somehow morphed in to a meal of ribs, salmon, crab cakes,corn, and salad.  Not to mention the cucumber salad, pasta salad, and chicken my parents had planned.  The chicken ended up being doled out as to-go leftovers.  Holy food!

Overall it was a lovely day.  Pre-pig-out we played some bocce and ladder ball, so at least we burnt a few calories in anticipation.  It was just great to hang out with the fam, as usual.

I pretty much passed out immediately upon getting home (it was late!), and now it's time to get the week started.

I'll be back in a bit with a (random) product review.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Super Jessica!

I showed up at my newest class the other day early.  I had a few things I needed to take care of with the manager on duty.

I arrived just in time to hear two members complaining that the earlier class had no instructor.  They were pissed.

Of course I couldn't let a room full of people go without an instructor so I told the members and the manager that I'd teach it.

I rushed in to the class in my street clothes, threw together a quick explanation and then got started.  I did the first half of the class wearing a tank top, jeans, and spin shoes.  Nice, right?

I used my Don't Back Down ride which has a full recovery song midway.  At that point I ran to the locker room, pulled a Clark Kent, and changed in to my gym clothes.  Then back to the class to continue teaching.

Wrapped up at 6:30, had a few quick minutes to get settled and then back to teach round two at 6:45.  It was chaotic and exhausting.

Both classes are an hour, and coming from a 45 minute class, those extra 15 definitely feel tough.

However it was SO worth it.  The members were awesome and so appreciative, plus they LOVED the class, which made my day.

It's very hard to build up a following at a new club or in a new time slot, so subbing is a great way to introduce people to your style and format.  Hopefully some of them will convert to my later class.

On a spin related tangent, I tried to check out some new profile ideas at and it told me I didn't have access to those pages.  Did they remove the free content?  Anyone?

Well, off to get things done and then segue in to weekend mode.  I'm sooooo ready!  Have a great weekend and happy father's day!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Yay Thursday!

TGIT!  This week has felt sooooo slow for me, so I'm happy it's Thursday and we're in the home stretch.

I had wanted to take a boot camp class last night.  I took this class regularly for some time but haven't taken it now in about a year.  Unfortunately the class is at 6p and it's about 15-20 minutes away.  Work got a bit nutty so I knew getting out at 5p wasn't in the cards.

Julio had a softball game at the local beach/park so instead I changed in the office and went over there.  He played softball and I went for a run.

The run wasn't so great.  My guess is that I clocked about 2+ miles but I'm really not sure.  My stride felt a bit off, my shins acted up, my stomach was eh, and my breathing wasn't great.  But I kept going.

Another problem was that I didn't have a predetermined path.  I'm not too familiar with the park so I didn't know where to go and when I left the park to hit local roads they were straightaways, which are my least favorite.  Without a plan I felt it was too easy to stop when I wanted.

My goal was to run for 41 minutes and I came close, but that included a bathroom break and a very short walk to stretch my shins.  Don't tell!

After the run I sat down to watch the game.  They won, which is good.  But holy bugs!  I now remember why I stay away from the park at dusk.  I felt like I was being eaten alive by these tiny yellow gnat like bugs.  I told Julio I'd wait for him in the car and took off.  So gross.

This morning was another chiro appt.  I'm still not sure what I think about the process.  I absolutely HATE the adjusting.  It freaks me out and just seems wrong.  That aside, I have seen some improvement but it seems to have stalled.  Since my insurance stinks, I'm going to take a little time off and see what happens before going back.  I also had electro stim today and it was up high enough that towards the end it caused one of my muscles to contract which was just weird.
Now just need to get through the work day.  Hope it's a good one!

I'm still open to thoughts on the chiro, so if you have input, feel free to share.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Look at my lunch!

Is it just me or does this pre-made salad look amazing!?!?

Shall I rent the runway?

Are you familiar with  If not, it's a site that lets you rent dresses.

I have a wedding coming up on July 9th and am considering a rental.  Thing is, I'm a bit nervous and also not sure what to choose.

Here are my three contenders:

What do you guys think?

I filtered my search on pear shaped, which I kind of am.  The event is black tie.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011


This morning I was seriously jonesing for my morning coffee. 
It's sad when this (to the right) looks like the most amazing thing ever.  But I'm rolling with it and if this makes me happy, then so be it!  It does taste quite good!

So good morning to you all! (or all three of you)  :)

My goal last night was to hit the gym after the chiro but I wanted to take a class and it wasn't until 7p and I wrapped up at the chiro by 6, not to mention the fact that I was exhausted, but more on that later.  Needless to say, no gym.  Gym: 0 Couch: 1

This morning though I was determined to fix last night and hit the gym.  Alarm went off at 5:30a and even though I kind of wanted to stay in bed, I knew I didn't need the sleep so I forced myself out.  The gym was good.  Logged about 45 on the treadmill and then did a super quick upper body set.

For breakfast today I'm bringing back an old staple...the Larabar!

I first tried these in March 2010.  You probably think it's weird that I remember the date, but really it's not, because it happened at Spin Odyssey, which is every March.

When I was teaching double classes on Mondays (6a, 9:30a), I'd hit Panera between classes for some coffee and a Larabar.  Every week.  I loved it and I loved them.

However once real life got in the way, they kind of fell by the wayside.  Imagine my excitement when they were on sale at Whole Paycheck!  I only bought two, Peanut Butter and Jelly, and Key Lime Pie.  I don't think I've  had the Key Lime before, so I hope it's good!

Are you a Larabar fan?  Do you have any flavor recommendations?  Have you had the chocolate ones?

Well, time to work.  I'm off to NY mid-day because my mommers is retiring this year and they're having a dinner for her tonight.  Yay mom!

Have a good one!

Monday, June 13, 2011


It's June, but the weather here has been frigid. And by here, I mean CT, not AK or the Arctic Circle.

Mother Nature's got something up her sleeve and now she's giving us temperatures in the 50s in June.  This weekend was chilly!

I figured my Saturday spin class would have a good turn out though since it was cold and rainy.  The numbers have been struggling a bit since Memorial Day, which is to be expected, but I still hate seeing them fall.  Unfortunately they weather didn't make much of a difference.  I had enough to have a good class but it wasn't full.  One rider came up to me after class and told me how much he likes it when the class isn't full.  As long as someone enjoys it.

I threw together a new spin ride pre-class, adding in some more current songs.  After my first attempt I took a look and noticed that I had 3 (yes 3!) Pitbull songs in the ride.  I know some people would be fine with this, but I'm not, so I had to change things up.  I knew I liked his stuff, I didn't realize I liked it that much, or that he is in sooo many songs.

One song I threw in as a warmup and am currently loving (cheese factor aside) is Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO.  It's totally cheesy but definitely gets me excited to move.  Agree? Disagree?

After class on Saturday I met Don Juan at another gym.  He did cardio and I did some upper body stuff, then we met up for fun with Mr. Rope.  (Totally just re-read this post and laughed at how this could sound dirty.  Anyway...) You know him, that huge rope that I love and hate at the same time.  We alternated 30-45 second rounds on the rope which sufficiently got our heart rates up.  Unfortunately, the moment I finished, I already felt that little twinge in my lower back.  Nothing serious, just a bit sore.  Darn rope!

And now it's Monday.  How does that always happen?

I have a chiro appt after work and have to say that the last visit seems to have helped.    Before I couldn't look up without pain and now I can.  Fingers crossed!

Have great days y'all!  :)

Friday, June 10, 2011

So happy

I'm so happy it's Friday.  This week was exhausting!

In an interesting turn of events, I ended up being offered a new spin class at a different gym.  While not a Mad Dog Spinning gym, they did accept my certification.

Thing is, they use different bikes.

Not this exact model, but similar

Their bikes are Keiser brand.  The biggest difference is that the fly wheel is in the back, not in the front like on the Spinner bikes.  Another difference is the resistance vehicle.  The Spinner bikes have a nob, these bikes have more of a lever/paddle in the center of the handlebars.  The handle bars are also a different shape and the seat seemed much larger.

It will definitely take some getting used to.

Do any of my instructor friends teach on Keisers, if so, what do you think?

On a side note, my weekend is wide open and I couldn't be happier.  I had been hoping to get some pool time in, but it looks like the bad weather will arrive just in time for the weekend.

Have a good one and I'll catch you on the flip side!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Do I need sharper teeth?

For the past few weeks or so, my breakfast is usually cereal and then an apple an hour or so later.

Lately however, I'm having trouble eating apples.  Why you ask?  I can't seem to chew the skin.

I'm fine with Fuji and Pink Lady, but I bought some Gala (or maybe it was Braeburn), and just tried a Granny Smith and I can barely get the skin down.

Do I need to have my teeth sharpened or is this a problem that others have too?


I'm finally back home.  Phew.  The drive back yesterday felt like it took forever.  I guess it kind of did.  We left a bit before 3:30p and didn't get back to the office until 10p.  Gross!

But I am sooooo happy to be back.  Yay for routine!

Since the housewarming party was this past weekend, I wanted to make good on my word and put up some pictures of the finished product.

I threw together this before and after because it nicely sums things up.

The bathroom is also done but since it's a smaller and narrower room, it's very hard to photograph, so for now i'll just tell you it looks great.  Here's a close up of the shower detail.

Am going to keep this post quick as I get back to the grind, but I wanted to touch base quickly.  Have a fabulous thursday!!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Workout failure

Good morning!

As you might have gathered from my last post, I'm away for work at the moment.  This means that my routine (or lack of routine these past few months) has been thrown by the wayside.

I'm staying in a hotel and eating all my meals out.

En route to my destination I had Burger King for lunch (delicious grilled chicken sandwich).  Once at the office I needed a snack and was at the mercy of the vending machine (Nature's Valley Granola Bar).  Dinner was the local favorite, where I had a quite tasty steak/mushroom salad.  Finally, some veggies!

The town i'm visiting is somewhat rural and definitely not healthy, so it's a challenge.  Plus the hotel has snacks out 24 hours a day and i'm weak!

This morning I woke up at 5am after possibly the best nights sleep to work out.  I got to the hotel gym a bit after 5:30a after trying to decide whether I should run outside or hop on the treadmill.  It was still a tad dark so I went with the 'mill.  Quick warm up and then run.  Not so much.  For some reason I just could not run.  It felt uncomfortable and hard, so instead I did a 25 minute uphill walk.  Eh.  Did some lunges/squats and a few ab things after and called it a day.

I don't understand why I can not work out on the road like I do at home.  My motivation lacks, my energy lacks, and it's just not the same.  Does anyone else have this problem?

I was going to bring an Insanity DVD with me but I forgot.  Oops!

Monday, June 6, 2011


Help, I'm stranded at work.  Sounds funny, but really, it sucks.

I'm at the corporate office and drove in with a bunch of the big wigs.  Thing is, we have one car, so here I sit at 6:15p.  Their plan is to leave at 7p, but if it is anything like their punctuality with other things, who knows when I'll get out of here.

I wish I had known because I would have gotten a ride.  Oh well, guess it's as good a time as any to blog.

How were the weekends?

My weekend was lovely.  Stressful, but lovely.  I hosted a housewarming party and let's just say I wasn't exactly prepared or ready when the first guests showed up.  There was a lot of running around and disorganization but once I got past that it was wonderful and I was so appreciative of those who came by.

To me, a party isn't a party without some sort of game.  We played ladder ball (also called ladder golf).  Have you played?

I played for the first time when I was camping over Memorial Day weekend, and even though I was horrible, I knew that I wanted to play again.  It was quite entertaining to watch.  You usually play to 21 but since we were so horrible talented, we played to 10.  It was fun though and many laughs were had, which is always a good thing.

Later in the evening, games of a different sort were played (i.e. drinking games), so as you might be able to guess, Sunday was a bit of a lazy day for me.

I did get to give the vitamix a whirl and made my version of strawberry daiquiris.  In to the v'mix I threw frozen strawberries, some water, a little sugar, and rum.  I was mucho impressed with how smooth the mixture was and how little you could taste the rum.  And no, those weren't the reason I was a waste of space on Sunday. :)

Enjoy your evenings and let's hope I get out of here soon!!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Finally Friday

It was a short work week yet somehow it felt like Friday would never arrive.

I am happy to say that it has. Finally.

Work is a little chaotic, which is good because it makes the time pass, plus my housewarming party is tomorrow and I've done nothing.  So there are lots of things on my mind.

Even with all this important stuff, I've somehow managed to let my mind wander to what I'm going to wear to a wedding next month.  I moseyed on over to Rent the Runway and have been looking at dresses on and off.  I've never done the RTR thing but am VERY intrigued.  If I decide to go that route, maybe I'll throw up some choices on the blog.  Guess we'll see.

My parents are coming up tomorrow and they are sooooo excited to see the finished renovations that they're leaving right after the gym.  It's cute and I'm excited to see them since I haven't seen them since before Jamaica.

I had a yummy smoothie for breakfast this AM (strawberry/pineapple/banana with vanilla protein powder) and it is not keeping me full at all.  Yes, I ate it at 7:30a and it's now 11:30a but still.  I'm HUNGRY!!

OK, the chaos is calling.  Have a great weekend!  I hope to throw together a new spin ride so if I do, i'll share it early next week.  Happy June!!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Seen in the gym

Good morning!

I finally got back to the gym this morning and it felt GOOD.  I woke up more easily today at 5:15a than I did yesterday at 6:30a.

I took a new class, so here's a quick review and synopsis.  The class was called Turbo Kick.

I figured it was a kickboxing type class.  Not exactly.  The class did involve some kicking and boxing, but it was more bouncing around and doing a little choreography.  The "turbo" part apparently comes in to play when 30 minutes in you do 2 minutes of non stop exercises.  But this too was a little choreographed.

The instructor was super peppy which is great for a 6a class.
It's a mix of a few different types of classes.

The instructor didn't wear a mic and had the music very loud.  Most of the time you just followed what she did, but when she did speak, it was hard to hear her.
The choreography.  I'm not all that coordinated so this was a bit frustrating at times.
The impact.  Since there was a lot of jumping around and bouncing, I started to feel it a bit in my knees and shins.

The verdict:
I think I'll pass.  While this class is definitely great for some, it's just not my cup of tea.

Post class I busted out a quick mile, or rather, quick for me.  The pace was above 6.0 the same time and maxed out at 7.5.  This is way fast for me.

Somehow I managed to leave my shoes and my breakfast at home so I was very disappointed.  I picked up a banana at the convenience store and had a few Special K bars in my car. As for shoes, I'm wearing my shower flip flops until lunch time when I have to head home anyway.  Thankfully no one sees my feet most of the time.

When I was leaving the gym, I saw two women getting ready in the locker room.  Neither of them were particularly fit, nor did they seem comfortable in the gym.  One put on one of those black velcro wide bands that I think is supposed to slim your waistline (???), and the other had on one of those sweat suits.  You know, the outfits that look a bit like a plastic bag met up with aluminum foil.  Now maybe I'm just judgemental (admittedly, I am), but these to me are gimmicks.  Yes, if you sweat a ton you will see an instant weight loss, but once you rehydrate you won't be much better for it.

I'd love to hear some other thoughts on this.  Gimmick or legit?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Not quite

I tried these today. 

Having seen them many times at Trader Joe's, I thought it was worth a shot.  They're VERY low in calories.  Then yesterday the Fitnessista mentioned them as well, so I figured it was time to give them a taste.

The verdict - I'll pass.

They taste too much like seaweed and have a weird consistency.  I felt a bit like I was eating fish food.

Have you tried these?  Yay or Nay?

Kind of a fail

This morning I tried to make a smoothie for breakfast.  I guess technically it was a smoothie, but it just wasn't right. 

I used chocolate protein powder, banana, ice, and PB2.  It tasted OK but was a bit watery and towards the end was more like a liquid than a slush.  Oh well, it was my first attempt with the vitamix so I'll just have to try again.

This breakfast threw me out of my routine.  Since I consumed it right after making it, breakfast started at around 8am.  Normally I have some sort of cereal at 9 and then an apple at 11.  Hopefully the smoothie can hold me until 11 when I can eat my peach.  I'm having coffee at 9:30 which is totally unheard of.

I also like to wait to eat lunch.  Somewhere in my corporate life, I realized that the later I take lunch, the shorter the second half of the day is.  So I started taking lunch around 1.  Now I usually use my lunch time to run errands and then eat at my desk when I return.  Sometimes I eat around 1, other times it's closer to 2.

I'm curious about other people's eating habits.  Do you stick to a schedule?  Do you eat six small meals?

This weekend is my housewarming, so once that's done with I'll post some pictures of the finished kitchen and baths.  I'm so happy it's done with but somehow I'm still pretty stressed.  Guess I shouldn't say that I need a vacation?  :)