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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Groceries of a skater

Hey guys! I was inspired by Gabriela the other day to do a Groceries post. So...her goes! My weekly pick-ups include...

Fruits and veggies are always first on my list. Gotta have the essentials!
-apples (whichever kind is on sale)

-brown rice
-Ezekiel bread
-whole wheat sandwich thins
-Nature's Path or Kashi cereals 
-Ezekiel 4:9 cereal
Canned Items
-Amy's canned low-sodium soups
-canned garbanzo beans/chickpeas
-canned beans (all varieties) 

Frozen Foods
-Amy's microwave meals (I keep a few on hand at all times for those late night skating practices, which upon returning home the last thing I want to do is cook! Ever had a night like that? These are tasty, super healthy and super quick for when you're in a time crunch!)
-Veggie Burgers (whichever kind is the cheapest that day with the cleanest ingredient list!)
-frozen berries/other frozen fruits
-ALL frozen veggies

-Stoneyfield Farms Organic Plain Nonfat Yogurt (or the cheap kind!)
-a couple containers of greek yogurt (Oikos or Dannon Greek)
-skim milk
-fat free cottage cheese
-all fruit preserves
-the oh-so-essential nutbutter! (Organic Peanut, Almond, and Cashew. Along with a few Justin's packets for on-the-go)

Can't think of anything else right at the moment...but these are pretty much the bare essentials.
What are your shopping essentials? How many grocer trips do you make per week? 

Have a supercalifragilisticexpialidocious week everyone! :D

Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.
Robert Collier

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

New Ideas

Hey guys! Hope everyone had a TERRIFIC week :)
So...this past Saturday was me race (it was a four-miler) and it went SO well! NO knee pain AT ALL and crossed the finish in 35:00. Signing up for my next one (a 5K) this week (it is at the beginning of April!) :D
Also, I have my first competition since my knee injury one week from this coming Saturday!! SO excited and nervous! I'm against only two other girls, but nerve-racking none the less...:/
So in my fridge/pantry/cabinet right now I have miscellaneous things I purchased on impulse (come know you do it too--haha) that I legit have NO IDEA WHAT TO USE THEM FOR!!! The reason I am telling you all his is so you can help me figure out what to use them for! :D goes ;)

Dried apricots
I think I know what I am going to do with these babies...recipe coming soon :)

Shredded unsweetened coconut.
Now...I've mostly just been trying to use this up by putting it in my morning bowl of oats...but...I'm looking for some change...any ideas? Dishes? Please share!! :D

Coconut milk.
Now, I have a specific recipe that I am using this for, but I will have a whole can left over after! Ideas?!

One of my favorite things about Whole Foods is the bulk bins. When I go down the bulk aisle, I am like a kid in a candy store ;) I have gotten in the habit of buying about 20-50 cents of bulk items that I've never tried before so I won't waste lots of money if I don't like it. So far, it's worked pretty well :) This week's WF trip recruited the following:

Oatmeal topper, obvi...but...any other neat ideas?

Nutritional Yeast.
I have seen this ALL over the blog world, but have never tried it, because I honestly have NO IDEA what to use it for...suggestions? :D

Last but not least (and I DEFF know what I'm using these for!!)...CHIA SEEDS!
Though only my second time purchasing them, I am already in love...;)

In closing, I wanted to share with you all an experience I had earlier tonight. I got the opportunity to cook/serve food for a group that provides dinner for the homeless in that community every Wednesday. Though I have to admit, this kind of thing isn't really my "cup of tea" you could say, I am SO glad I did it. It was a wonderful experience and really made me realize how privileged I am. It was volunteer, so there's no money, but in some ways that makes it even more special to do it out of sheer knowledge that it is the right thing to do.
Hope everyone has a blessed week ahead.
Stay happy. Stay healthy.
"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent". -Eleanore Roosevelt.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

National Nutrition Month

Happy National Nutrition Month, fellow foodies! :D
In honor of the second holiday in March (after St. Patty's Day) I am going to do a post inspired by Gina and   TRY to name one of my fave fresh produce items for each color of the rainbow...Here goes!

Red: Tomatoes (or apples, strawberries, raspberries...maybe this will be harder than I though!). Most of you prob already know this well known "veggie" is actually a fruit! This savory produce has been proven to help prevent cancer, heart disease, and cataracts--just to name a few! And hey...who doesn't like tomatoes?! Oh wait...that would be my sister...:P

Orange: This one's's between two three though...hey! I love my fresh produce :)

The top 3 winners are: sweet potatoes, pumpkin, and oranges/clementines. YUM! Oh...and carrots ;)
All of the orange foods pack most if not all of you DV for beta-carotene. While tasting absolutely amazing. Oh. Yes. is yellow. Hmm...DEFINITELY bananas. Easy.
Can you say POTASSIUM?! Bananas are one of the best foods to eat for potassium in it's most natural state (don't get me wrong, I take my vitamins, but I'm all for getting most of your nutrition from fresh, wholesome produce!!) :D :D And (this is TOTALLY making me hungry) what is better than a bowl of banana, pb and cinnamon OATMEAL?! I know! NOTHING. Ha. :D

Green. Oh boy. This one's tough. Broccoli, most definitely, spinach, brussel sprouts, celery, kiwis (talk about superfood!)...the list goes on and on, get the gist :)
Most all of your dark greens provide a WONDERFUL source of calcium (think spinach, kale, collards, etc.) to strengthen your bones!

Blue...? Yeah...nothing's ringing a bell...hehe :)

Purple. Eggplant I like in moderation. But I can get eggplanted-out in a hurry. Grapes = awesomeness. Plums = my best friend. Holy yummers.
I've heard TONS about frozen grapes. I have yet to try them though! :/

I guess that pretty much concludes my produce rainbow. But for this week I highly encourage all of you to take in to consideration the food pyramid and the recommended food groups. is a great site to go on if your just beginning to learn about nutrition or if you are a RD! LOVE that site--great info AND recipes!

My race is this Saturday! It's a four-miler...with LOTS of hills. SO excited! I had a GREAT time on my run with the sis today--I had a PR of 3 miles in 24:00! So happy :)
Until next time...
Stay happy. Stay healthy
And...a quote, of course.
“Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery. And today? Today is a gift. That’s why we call it the present.” – B. Olatunji
One of my favorite quotes ever.
Peace out. And once again...Happy nutrition month :)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Temperature Teasers and 2011 staples :)

Hey guys! Is this wacky weather or what?! It was 74F 2 days it's snowing! Man...craziness! posts lately haven't really been "daily eats"...I was wondering what you guys thought of my new format? Yay or nay? I usually don't take pics of all my stuff...just usually when I have an awesome recipe or an exceptionally nice-looking bowl of oats ;) Getting to the point though...What do you think of my new blogging-type? Do you like my informative posts? 
So...while I was checking blogs the other day, I ran across not one, but TWO blogs saying how amazing Target's new Peanut, Almond Cashew butter is...and as most of you could have already guessed, I HAD to get my hands on some of this baby.

No pic, but if you've read many blogs lately, you've already seen this one popping up all over the place :)

Skating is going great :) I've gotten most all of my jumps back since I fell....still tweaking things and improving as I go, but my coach said it doesn't look like I've been off for that long! :D "sigh of relief"!

So...with this BEAUTIFUL (or has-been beautiful) weather I started running daily again...during the cold months I usually only do it 2-3 times a week and get my exercise in other forms (strength, treadmill, workout video, elliptical, stat. bike, etc.) but alas, with warm weather comes my hankering for more runs. I AM ADDICTED TO RUNNING AGAIN! With my knee injury, I obviously couldn't do much except ab + upper body...but now that my knee is good-o again, I have been a running machine! :D And...wait for it...I am  signing up for my first race since my injury! It's a 4-miler at the beginning of March! I am SO excited!
Today I hit up a nearby trail to do a 5-miler with one of my good friends. We had such a blast! The weather was PERFECT and we were the only people out :)

Now for a few foods that will grant you peak performance and make your belly (and your taste buds!!) super happy :D

Most everyone in this day in age would agree with me when I said that it's not always budget-friendly to eat healthy. I mean, fresh fruits and veg, when in season, can be a steal, but other times, you have to be at the right place at the right time, and keep up with sales, etc...who has time for that?! A few things to always have on hand, no matter the season, that won't lighten your wallet to much...

Frozen veggies: To be completely honest, it is pretty hard to go wrong with frozen veg. They are cheap, quick to prepare when time is short, most often come in bulk sizes, and are 99% of the time packages without any added ingredients. Can you beat that?! I am a huge believer in the power of frozen things--I guess that's my inner skater coming out ;)
Canned Beans: These are pretty great too. Amazing nutritional value (high in protein, good source of carbs, loads of fiber, etc.) and also generally low-in cost. My favs? Lentil, kidney, pinto, and garbanzo. Yummy :)

Raisins: As most everything I post is, raisins are a phenomenal oatmeal topper. They also provide great nutrition...especially when ingested during activity. Raisins pack just enough carbs and natural sugar to be the perfect mid-workout (or mid-day, even!) pick-me-up. And they come in generous packages (or in single serving and mini-sizes) to last a while.

I have a pretty exciting dinner planned for tonight. :) I'll post the recipe soon. Hope everyone has a great rest of the week!
Stay happy and healthy.
I read a quote today that I want to share with you all. "You cannot solve a problem with the same mind set that you had when the problem started." -Albert Einstein
Such a simple statement, yet so powerful and thought-provoking!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Thanks to yesterday, it is only a necessity that I make tonight's post a dark chocolate/cocoa post!!
As most of you know, the benefits of dark choc. are ENDLESS! A few examples include...

The number one health benefit and most widely known benefit of cocoa is cardiovascular health improvement. Cardiologists actually recommend for people to eat a few squares of dark chocolate every day in order to help keep hearts healthy.
Dark chocolate and cocoa also provide many surprising antioxidants. It tops the charts along with blueberries ad green tea.

Cocoa also reduces blood pressure, improves blood flow, and may help prevent plaque formation in arteries.

Though it is a sweet treat, dark choc. has a low glycemic index similar to...get ready for it...OATMEAL! Yes, you heard right. Our beloved dark chocolate, along with our beloved oats, will keep you full and won't spike your blood sugar.

Just like all plant based foods (since cocoa comes from the cocoa tree), dark chocolate is very high in important vitamins and minerals.

Recent studies are showing that dark chocolate might be one of the many cancer-fighting superfoods! Now...if this reason doesn't convince you to start chowing down, I don't know what will!

Hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine's! Until next time...

Stay happy. Stay healthy.


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Metaboblism gets a kick

Here we go with a fitness post!! :)
I wanted to start you guys off with a few of my all-time fave forms of working out. As a figure skater, it's a necessity to go throw your jumps regularly to ensure proper technique, better strength in the landings, and over all stronger, more solid jumps. As off-ice (what us skaters call it) training is great for skating only, it doesn't provide you with all of the benefits as say, running 7 miles would. For skating (as most any other sport), you need the ability to put out TONS of speed in a short amount of time (think 4.5 minute programs), endurance for long-programs, or so you won't be dying by the end of any program, and strength in just about...every muscle of your body. One of the great things about skating is you work SO many muscles in everything you do...arms, legs, abs/core, back, even shoulders can get worked if your technique is correct. Otherwise, here's a few other ways I stay in shape for hitting the ice:
Kickboxing is a MAJOR favorite of mine. I love coming up with my own bum-busting combo or popping in the all famous Tae-bo DVD when time runs short (Billy Blanks is a genius!).
The Classic Collection--Oldies, but goodies :)

I know lots of people look down on workout/exercise videos...what's your take on a tape?
Tapes aren't my favorite thing to do, but during these frigidly cold (and ICY!!) months it's not always accessible to go on a in the summer time, I much prefer outdoor forms of working out...but most of the time during winter, I stick to indoor forms, whether it be treadmill (as much as I loathe it...), the gym, or tapes. 
I recently purchased a new workout DVD...heard of the "Jackie" series? Yep, it was one of those...the blue one...not sure what it's official title is...:P
It has 5 complete workouts included on one tape (total body for 40 min, 15 min, upper for 15, lower for 15, abs for 15)...that's a pretty good deal, I thought! 
I wasn't at all impressed with the total body workouts...but the targeted body part ones are really great! 
I also adore Jillian Michaels...she kicks some major butt on the "Biggest Loser" and is such a motivation to many people alike!

This DVD is great for anyone who is just beginning to work out, or if you've been exercising for years--there are 3 intense levels included...1, 2, 3. I underestimated level 1 when I bought this--each workout (ALL of them...level 1 too!) is a hard-core strength, cardio, AND ab workout. Talk about a package deal! And this DVD (along with the others I have suggested) are widely available at any fitness store/fitness section.

Now...onto the title of my post...recently I have been getting back into a lot of plyometric training--excellent for figure skating, running, skiing, basically any sport that requires leg/lower body strength (after I had the o.k. to work out again after my knee healed, this type of exercise caused more pain than most, so I have just been able to start this again). Eccentric contractions (which combines stretching of the muscles + jumping) are much more effective at toning your muscles than Concentric contractions, which are simply explosive movements. Some trainers even call plyo "metabolic training" because it is one of the top forms of exercise to get that heart rate up and boost your metabolism.
Lately, there's been a lot of talk about the importance of strong bones in order to keep total health. I am in agreement with this 100%. It is so crucial as athletes to MAKE SURE you get enough calcium, vitamin D, and proteins. The combination of these vits and minerals + strength training (and cardio) is a simple way to ensure you are keeping your bones in tip-top shape. If you have a family history of bone loss, osteoporosis, etc., you might need to focus more on the vitamins and minerals...but TALK TO YOUR DOC--remember, I'm not a physician...just a health nut + fitness junkie ;)

What about you all...what are your fave forms of sweating? Fave time of day to workout? I'm a tried-and-true a.m. sweater...nothing beats a hard-core run + a power yoga sesh while the sun is rising! :D

As always: Stay happy, stay healthy.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Super, Super, Seaweed

If you read a lot of articles/books/etc., you will already know that seaweed is a wondrously healthy food. But just what benefits can this under-the-sea plant give you? Keep reading, and you'll find out :)
Just about every vitamin and mineral required by the human body are found in this salty sea veggie, including: calcium, sodium, magnesium, potassium, iodine, iron, zinc, Vitamin A (as beta-carotene), B1, B2, B6, niacin, Vitamin C, pantothenic acid, and folic acid.
Seaweed feeds the shafts and the ducts of the scalp to help improve the health of the hair. Studies show that the minerals in seaweed are vital for healthy hair growth.
Seaweed and seaweed extract helps in the detoxification of the body, as well as being benificial for skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Seanol, a powerful antioxidant from seaweed, boosts energy and mental clarity while speeding up the metabolism. WHO KNEW?!
There are so many ways to incorporate the all-amazing seaweed into your daily diet.
This afternoon, for example, I snacked on an Annie Chun's Sesame Seaweed Snack:
Annie Chun's sesame Seaweed snack

The all-famous sushi, of course: 
So, now that we all know what seaweed can do for our health, let's grab some sushi and eat up!

Stay happy and healthy 

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Tuesday, Tuesday, Tuesday....

No....I haven't forgotten about all of my bloggers...I've just been super busy lately! I will try to do better about posting, though (even though I say this every time-I really mean it!)

A few eats from the past weeks!
 2 slices of ezekiel bread, tuna mixed with plain yogurt (about 2-3 Tbsp), with cucumber and swiss cheese

1/2 c old-fashioned oats cooked in skim milk, 1/2 banana, almond butter, raspberry jelly-soo good!

 Joseph's oat bran and flax pita bread, brown rice, tomatoes, provolone cheese, salsa, a few carrots--mexican pizza!! YUM!

 Sweet potato with cinnamon, asparagus spears, salmon, sandwich thin spread with a thick layer of garlic hummus
 Irish oats cooked in skim, banana, cherries, cashew butter with cinnamon + ginger...oh. yes. :)

 2 toasted ezekiels, 1/4 avocado, tomatoes, pepperjack cheese + grapefruit

 1/2 c Irish oats cooked in skim milk, 1/2 banana, kiwi, almonds

 2 scrambled eggs with pepperjack cheese, whole wheat english muffin, with broccoli

 2 ezekiels with hummus, cucumber, goat cheese + kiwi

 Oatbran (my new FAV!), banana, almond butter, cinnamon--BEST EVER COMBO!

 Wwheat pita crisped burned in broiler oven topped with EVOO and garlic marinara sauce, provolone cheese, goat cheese + pear
 An INTENSE yogurt mess with greek yogurt, berries, cherries, 2 T wheat germ, almonds...mmm :)

Oatbran, sliced kiwi, pear, almonds, a few chopped dried figs ;)

~Fitness Is Fun!~ 
Top 7 most effective exercises we go people...
1. Walking-burning an amazing 100 calories per hour, walking is a great way to get in some cardio if you are just recovering from any lower-body injury
2. Interval Training-This is proven to burn fat and SHRED you. Seriously. Interval training is no joke. There are tons of amazing interval workout out there (online too)--check them out and FEEL THE BURN...literally.
3. Squats-Talk about a move that targets hips, butt, legs AND abs...squats are your best bet. To prevent hurting the knees, either do a wall squat or repetitive (not squat and hold without leaning against something) squats.
4. Lunges-Lunges are very versatile. They can be be as hard as you make them to be...your basic lunge, walking lunges, walking lunges with arm variations...anything!
5. Pushups-also very versatile, pushups are an oldie but a goodie. A great all-over strength move, pushups are also very versatile. A walking pushup, traveling pushup, planks, lots of ways to make these tougher...if they're not hard-core enough as they are :)
6. Abdominal Curnches-So many crunches, so little time! My number one favorite ab crunch is the bicycle internal and external obliques, transverse abs, upper AND one move!
7. Bent-over (Dumbbell) Row-SO great for those shoulders. And abs. Works best with a 3-5 lb. weight.

~Healthy All Around!~
Cinnamon: talk about antioxidants! Cinnamon is at the top of the charts for those babies along with the added benefit that it is proven to lower blood-glucose levels...not to mention the delicious, spicy flavor!
Pecans: These nuts have been significantly shown to lower bad (LDL) cholesterol and raise good (HDL). They also lower the risk of Type II diabetes in women.
Pomegranate Juice: Also very high in antioxidants, pomegranate juice is also shown to hep lower the risk of the arteries hardening or atherosclerosis.
Red Delicious Apples: Now these are one of my favorites on the list. These are the bomb-dot-com, baby! Also high in antioxidants, these little (or big in some cases) guys are also rich in pectin, a form of soluble fiber proven to help lower cholesterol. 
Red or Kidney Dried Beans: Overflowing with protein, antioxidants, potassium, folic acid, dietary fiber and complex carbs, beans are dense and widely versatile. 
Cabbage: As far as Cancer-fighting superfoods, cabbage is viewed from most eyes as number one. Cabbage holds phytochemicals, including sulforaphane, which is said to protect the body against cancer-causing free radicals. It's also rich in vitamins K, and C, and a wonderful source of dietary fiber, vitamin B6, folate, manganese, and Omega-3 Fatty Acids. Cabbage is most commonly used in coleslaw...but as I am not a fan of this dish...AT ALL, I prefer to throw some in a pot of soup or boil it plain. YUM!

 So long for now, folks. Talk to you later! Enjoy the remains of your Tuesday! 
Stay happy and healthy. 

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Jumping Bean

Hey guys! Hope this post is finding everyone well :) This week is FLYING by as of today...almost Wednesday?! So my Physical Therapist gave me breaking news about a week ago...IM ALLOWED TO JUMP!!! AND do ANYTHING as long as it doesn't hurt :) This made for one super happy camper (moi!) ;D make me EVEN happier--I am D-O-N-E with PT! I'm "Free Willy"!! hahah ;)

so...just randos again...
 plain yogurt, organic natures path smartbran cereal, 1/2 banana, frozen (thawed) mango, frozen berries, wheat germ

SOOO good! One of my fav yogurt messes!! 

Old-fashioned oats, 1/2 apple, berries, raisins, almonds, 1/2 c 2% milk (cooked in)
 A Super delish post-workout combo: sweet potato with cinnamon, a morningstar veggie burger and a side of corn

Oats, 1/2 c. POM juice, berries, coconut, sunflower seeds--put oats in bowl and pour pom over. Microwave for about 30-45 seconds and top with goodies!
A sammie combo from a fellow blogger: Ezekiel bread, pbutter, all-fruit raspberry jelly, and 1/2 banana with a side of an unpictured apple

oats, 1/2 c skim cooked in, 1/2 naner, wheat germ, 1/2 c berries, dash of vanilla extract cooked in, blob of pbutter

ezekiel sammie with garlic hummus, tomato, baby carrots, lettuce, and a slice of swiss cheese with a side of a grapefruit
 yogurt mess with organic smartbran cereal, 1/2 naner, berries, and mango
 on the go lunch: ezekiel, hummus, swiss, lettuce, baby carrots and an apple
 1/2 c oats, 1/2 naner, berries, a chopped date, ezekiel cereal, cashew butter
 ezekiel, hummus, swiss, cucumber, tomato, and an apple
 yogurt mess with a kiwi, berries, almonds, and a bit of ezekiel cereal to top it off

 brown rice, cucumber slices, tomato, baby carrots, blob of hummus, and tuna
1/2 c oats, cooked in 1 c skim milk, wheat germ cooked in, 1/2 naner, cashew butter as a topper
~Fitness Is Fun!~

Since I am now FREE to workout, :D I've been THOROUGHLY enjoying power skating, kickboxing, LOADS of yoga, pilates, running/power walking, anything you can think of, basically!
Just a few healthy living/exercise/wellness tips to hold you guys over till my next post!! 

~Healthy Life, Healthy YOU!~ 
Tip 1. New fad: BLACK RICE. It's packed with iron and complex carbs. It gets it's dark coloring from anthocyanins (just like pomegranates). These help reduce muscle soreness-PERFECT for post-workout meals/munchies!
Tip 2. Eggs are an amazing source of protein and choline-found in few foods but oh-so vital for healthy brain cell development and memory.
Tip 3. Kefir is basically drinkable yogurt. It contains bacteria that is shown to strengthen your immune system. It is available in flavored and plain. 
Tip 4. White Tea, in comparison to green and black teas, packs more theanine, an amino acid which reduces blood pressure and anxiety levels...and it tastes good! Even better :)
Tip 4. Nauseous? Try sipping ginger tea (or in us health bloggers case, throw some in your daily bowl of oats!). It contains anit-inflammatory and analgesic compounds that mimic NSAIDS. Studies show that popping a ginger pill or sipping some ginger tea relieves pain just as effectively as the leading pain killer ibuprofen!
Tip 5. Bad bruise? Rub a topical vitamin K cream on the booboo daily for two weeks. This vitamin improves your bod's ability to form blood clots in damaged areas--therefore stopping bruising and bleeding under the skin.

Hope everyone has a great rest of the week. Until then! 
Stay healthy. Stay happy.
Also--PLEASE comment on my post below and tell me how I can incorporate stuff that you all would like more into each of my posts! Every word is much appreciated!