Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Breakfast- Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

The smell of cinnamon is intoxicating! It makes your whole house feel warm and cozy! I was craving a little comfort food this morning so instead of plain old oatmeal, I made Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal.

Chop Apples (I prefer Granny Smith! Here I just used 1 HUGE apple)
Put in Saucepan on Medium Heat
Add Cinnamon (I just throw it in there)
Heat apples, stirring occasionally. Mix in 1/2 C Almond Milk.
When apples are soft, add in 2 C Oatmeal

**Optional- if you need yours a little sweeter, add in Stevia or Truvia. I like the plain apple cinnamon taste**




Serve with Eggs!
Lots of Sea Gulls today!
Date Night =)

Filet, Mashed Potatoes and Roasted Veggies
Boys will be boys 


Monday, July 30, 2012

Body Beast Progress Day 15 Build: Shoulders

Woooweee! I just wrapped up Day 15 of Body Beast and I am BEAT! Build: Shoulders



Please don't ask me to raise my arms above my head haha The workout is about 38 minutes long and focusing on creating perfect deltoids (fyi deltoid muscle is the muscle forming the rounded contour of the shoulder, thanks wikipedia!) 


On to the workout: 
BUILD:Shoulders leverages single sets, super sets and a killer giant set of a broad range of shoulder movements. Exercises include dumbbell shoulder press, lateral raise, upright row, EZ bar underhand press, front raise series, rear delt raise, dumbbell shrug, dumbbell scap trap, six way shoulder raise and you finish up with Ab tuck & rolls.
The limited breaks within sets keeps your muscles engaged and heart rate elevated. The workout took me about 55 minutes instead of 38 because I needed to pause to change out my weights....and quite honestly because I needed a break! haha

Everyone has been asking me if I've seen results yet. Here's the deal, physically I haven't seen much change (although I felt the same way when I was doing P90X. It wasn't until I compared pictures that I saw the changes). BUT I have gotten a LOT stronger! 
I'm seeing a lot of improvement in my form and the amount I can lift! Booyahhhh!! Check this out! The highlighted areas are where I improved!

Standing Dumbbell raises takes the Gold- I went from 5-10 lbs up to 25-35!

This is exactly why it's so important to track your progress! If you need the Body Beast worksheets, here is the link to Download them. 
Tracking can be a little tedious but you strive to improve your numbers and you feel like a total Bad ace when you dominate!

Sweaty mess!!
I'm going to blog about each of the workouts...but I will say...much to my surprise...I am LOVING this workout! I was intimidated at first because it's aimed at men- but Sagi is unintentionally hilarious which is entertaining enough to distract me from the fact that we are working out lol
Sagi hassles the other guys in the workout- "Did your mommy write you a permission slip?" "Is that all Barbie?!" 

But, he is really right there working with you...pushing you...he even urges you to continue and work on your form even if you need to drop the weights and continue with just the movement. Very encouraging! 

Since I'm so beat...I didn't want to mess around with dinner. Sooo why not throw everything in a pan in the oven!

Chicken Broccoli Casserole

1 to 2 lbs. chicken breasts

  • 1 package of frozen broccoli 
  • Soup (chicken or I used Miso because that's all I have)
  • 2 cups uncooked instant brown rice
  • Aluminum foil

Preheat oven to 375. 

Wash  chicken under cold running water. Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel & place it on a cutting board. Use a sharp knife to cut the chicken breasts into small cubes and throw in roasting pan or pyrex dish.

Add your frozen broccoli in with the chicken and pour the soup over  it. Mix in 1/2 cup of hot water and the rice and stir well until creamy.

Cover the roasting pan with aluminum foil and place the pan in the oven. Cook the dish for an hour.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Rainy Day Project Idea

I cant stand white walls! I don't know what it is but they are soooo ugly to me! No personality, no FUN! No expression of your style... definitely not my type! I'm a total Sanguine (for all of you who have read Personality Plus- great read!!) but for those of you who haven't read it...the definition of a sanguine:

Sanguine

The sanguine temperament is fundamentally impulsive and pleasure-seeking; sanguine people are sociable and charismatic. They tend to enjoy social gatherings, making new friends and tend to be boisterous. They are usually quite creative and often daydream. However, some alone time is crucial for those of this temperament. Sanguine can also mean sensitive, compassionate and romantic. Sanguine personalities generally struggle with following tasks all the way through, are chronically late, and tend to be forgetful and sometimes a little sarcastic. Often, when they pursue a new hobby, they lose interest as soon as it ceases to be engaging or fun. They are very much people persons. They are talkative and not shy. Sanguines generally have an almost shameless nature, certain that what they are doing is right. They have no lack of confidence.
It cracks me up because it's soooo true! But anywhooo back to the point...I wanted to get rid of the white walls in our place because I can't stand looking at them! So I thought...how cute would it be for my boyfriend and I to paint something together!? 


Now it was a bit of a struggle to get him to Michael's, but eventually he gave in! Once we got there, I had to reign him in because there are so many project possibilities!! Michael's is awesome because a) they have everything b) they always have sales and coupons! 


We bought a 36x36 canvas, acrylic paints, tray, paintbrushes, sponges & paint roller all for about $45!
Now....figuring out what/how to paint is a totally other story!
All of this craft shopping was exhausting, so we had to stop to re-fuel at a local bakery Le Pain Quotidien.
Body Beastis no joke! Right now, according to the guide- I need 2027 calories for the Build Phase (round to 2000). Better start eating! hah 
For the build and bulk phases, I need

5 Portions of Starches
2 Portions of Legumes or Protein Liquids
Portions of Veggies
Portions of Fruits or carb liquids
Portions of Protein
Portions of fat
1 Scoop Hardcore Base Shake, 2 scoops Fuel Shot

This might sound like foreign craziness to you, but the nutrition guide breaks down what you can eat for each category. It's not hard, I promise!
Anywayyyyy back to the Bakery- We picked this place because of their philosophy and incredible BREAD!! haha 
"Whenever we can, we source organic ingredients. This way, we not only build lasting and meaningful partnerships with organic farmers, but we also ensure our ingredients are of the highest quality. It's about finding the very best, in a way that is good for all of us.
This philosophy influences every part of the way we do business, from the food we serve to the design of our stores to the materials we use. We use reclaimed wood and recycled Gypsum in construction, energy-efficient lamps, and environmentally friendly cleaning supplies and packaging.
It's good for our bodies, our communities, and our earth"
They hook you up with a "bucket of bread" haha and tons of natural nut butters and jams. So delicious! This wasn't exactly on the Body Beast menu...but hey...we've been working hard!
 
Yummyyy carbs!! What better way to get the creative juices flowing! Right?!

It all starts with a blank canvas!

Since we are right by the ocean, we picked an ocean-y theme and colors. I lovvee how rich and bright they are!
The sanguine in me wanted to just go right in and start painting! You have to start somewhere right?! So we painted and re-painted until we got the look we wanted. That's the beauty of acrylic paint....you can cover up your first attempts lol
Work in progress!
 Almost finished....
 TA DA!!!!!!!
The J&K exhibition! Our official debut as artists!!!

We learned a lot of painting....and communication!!! Lol we started with totally different visions...but ended with a cool design, some amazing memories, some COLOR in our place, and a powerful memento to look back on over the years! 
If you're looking for a good rainy day project, do this with someone you love! 

Love you babe =)

Now I have something pretty to look it while I'm working out! DAY 9 of Body Beast! I'll have to write a review to share my thoughts...but I must say, I love it! and it's totally kicking my butt!

It's time to make a COMMITMENT! What is one thing you put off YESTERDAY and are COMMITTED to doing TODAY??? If you need a little nudge, email me! I start Challenge groups EVERY MONTH!
Inspiration of the day!!





Sunday, July 22, 2012

Santa Monica Attractions- Z Garden & Escondido Falls

Ever eat somewhere that was sooo amazing you felt compelled to write a review? I am sooo blown away by this place that I HAVE to share it with you guys.
Z Garden
Z Garden
2350 Pico Blvd
Santa MonicaCA 90405
Neighborhood: Santa Monica
(310) 392-2900

We love food! So we are always on the lookout to try somewhere new =) This place popped up on Yelp so we decided to give it a go.
5 thumbs up!
We started with hummus and pita bread. Apparently it's made fresh daily- so delicious! Jay went with Lamb on a bed of rice, a side salad and hummus.
I opted for the BEEF STEAK KEBAB PITA SANDWICH (Charbroiled marinated beef steak lettuce, tomato, onion, parsley and hummus.) Only $7.45!
Very filling and tasty! The food was good...but the service was OUTSTANDING! If you want an inexpensive meal and to be treated like royalty, def visit this place =)
Ever live some where and somehow miss out on all of the touristy things that everyone else travels to see? I don't want to be THAT GUY especially since I'm so new to the city.
So in the spirit of exploring more of Santa Monica, we decided to hit up the beach and some of the local trails.

 We have hands down the most incredible view! How could you NOT spend all of your time outside with beauty like this?!? 
We also found the Escondido Falls hiking trail. This 3.8-mile hike visits a 200 foot waterfall that is split into two tiers. The upper tier is 150 feet tall and stunning after a rainstorm. 
Unfortunately, it has not rained recently so the water was not that impressive...although it DID look like a pretty little rainforest.
 Lots of wildlife along the way!

And of course I can't leave without putting in a health/fitness tip!!

There is no reason you have to eliminate fruit from your diet if you are trying to lose weight and decrease body-fat. Fruit is high in fiber, loaded with nutrients and makes a great post workout snack. Yes it contains fructose and too many carbs just like too much of anything can slow progress- so stick to one to two servings a day and watch your portion sizes.







Saturday, July 21, 2012

Whipped Banana Toast and Body Beast

We are officially ending the first week of Body Beast and I'm a little surprised to say that I love it. I doubt that Sagi is trying to be funny, but the workouts are hilarious. 
"The beast" gives the guys in the workout a hard time, ex: "Did your mommy write you a permission slip." "You're lifting like Barbie" It cracks me UP! I've said this time and time before...for me to workout, it has to be FUN! and while the atmosphere in the workout is def a man's world...Sagi provides enough levity to keep me smiling throughout the grueling 50 min workouts.  

The workouts actually go by really fast! I am constantly pausing because unlike P90X, Sagi doesn't mess around between sets. You go from one immediately onto the next. This is going to be AWESOME when I have the workouts down pat. After doing P90X for awhile, I found myself fast forwarding thru Tony Horton's long talking spells. I love him...but speed it up! 


 To keep the floor clean, we are using Power Blocks instead of having weights all over the place.  I have to pause a lot to switch out the weight- but I like the fact that they are compact!

This week I had an idea to change breakfast up a little bit. I adapted the Whipped Banana Oatmeal recipe to come up with a Banana "Sauce" for our toast. 
I heated the Almond milk and sliced bananas on medium heat. Added a little Agave Nectar (or you could use syrup, honey) and cinnamon. Stirred until it looked like apple sauce.
Pour over Whole wheat toast and enjoy!

We ate ours like banana sandwiches! Delish! 

619 Muscle Long Beach Branden Ray Flex Magazine Shoot

Had a really cool experience recently- we had the honor of going out to support our friend Branden Ray's at his photo shoot for Flex Magazine! 
This gym was ridiculous- 619 Muscle has hardcore. People were there to WORK. I've never been to a gym like this- really cool to see some of the IBFF pros workout . 
Talk about motivation!
Branden taking a break =)


Check out the awesome wall art!
Cool fun fact- this is where they did the Muscle & Fitness photoshoot for Flo Rida!
Pics from Muscle & Fitness




They have had visits and shoots with tons of pros! Check out one of my favs- Nicole Wilkins


and Pauline Nordic- she is known for her booty! Go to fighterdiet.com



Monday, July 16, 2012

Spa Day Sunday

When you start your week out right, Monday isn't so scary! I'm so glad I got back to my Sunday spa routine because I gotta tell ya...I jumped out of bed this morning. 
This of course was partly due to the fact that I was so relaxed yesterday that I was ready for bed by 930p lol
The boyfriend was pretty relaxed as well- he always thinks my beauty things are silly...until he tries them. If you don't already have a sleep mask...get one asap. They are amazing- especially if you travel a lot or get headaches. 
I love love love getting new beauty goodies so I made a trip over to Sally's Beauty yesterday and picked up a new clay mask, hair product and always have to get one new nail polish =)

FACE:
Occasionally, I'm embarrassed to say...I fall asleep with my makeup on. Even one night completely clogs my pores and you know it's bad when your man mentions something about it to you! Eeeeek! I was in DESPERATE need of a pore cleansing! My pick of the week- Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque.
It was about $6-7 at Sally's
It says it absorbs excess oil, rinses away blackheads and minimizes the appearance of pores. I left it on for about 20 minutes until it was dry but I read reviews about people leaving it on overnight and having amazing results. It had an amazing smell and a nice cooling sensation. It was a little tingly- it was like a could feel my pores being cleaned out.
The Result: Loved it! My skin felt great and the BF commented on what a difference it made. You KNOW it's good when your man wants you to put it on him next lol
UPDATE: Jay let me put the mask on him!! Check it out!



HAIR:
Next on my list- Repair my dry/damaged hair. I thought I'd give Aphogee's Keratin 2 minute Re-constructor a whirl
Wash hair and then work 1/2 ounce evenly through hair. Leave on for 2-5 minutes. If you want maximum penetration, you can cover your hair with a warm towel or shower cap. I opted not to...just because.
The Result: To be determined. I felt like my hair was silky, softer and it air dried straight! That never happens. I can't really tell if it made that much of a difference. It says to use Weekly so I'm going to try again next week. It does smell pretty yummy as well.



BODY: Baking Soda Body Scrub. My sister has been telling me about this for awhile...and I just never got around to trying it until now...
Baking Soda as an exfloliant/body scrub
So I looked up a ton a "recipes" for this online. You can add scents, essential oils, olive oil, coconut, etc...but for simplicity's sake I went with the good ole fashioned Baking Soda plus water. 3 parts baking soda, one part water = body scrub.
Rub this all over your body, rinse. Doesn't get much simpler than that!
The Result: I like. It's cheap, green, and easy. You miss out on sudsy fun, but that's a small price to pay. 
I waited until I was completely dry before putting on any lotion because I wanted to see if it actually made my skin any softer, and I think it did! 
I'll prob be more careful next time because I got Baking Soda everywhere when I was rinsing it off lol Good thing it's also a great bathroom cleaner.
Is there anything Baking Soda can't do?



Onto Breakfast! Cinnamon Banana Oatmeal and Eggs!
I'm not exactly sure when my love affair with cinnamon started but I lovee it so much. It makes the whole house smell warm and cozy!
Why I love this recipe:
it's super easy, it's healthy, it's a great alternative to cereal and boring breakfast options

Ingredients:

1 cup Almond Milk
1 cup Old-Fashioned Oats
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 banana, thinly sliced
Directions:

Heat Almond Milk (or water) in a small saucepan. Add thinly sliced banana and cinnamon. Keep pan over heat and stir for approximately five minutes until the bananas dissolve. I like my oats to be hearty and a little dry so I add them last. Stir, pour oatmeal into a bowl and if you're feeling frisky, add almond and banana slices.



Reading on a Sunday is a MUST! My Top recommendation right now- The Greatest Miracle in the World.
Wow, wow, wow is all I am gonna say. Make sure this book makes it on your list!  One of my ultimate joys in life- curl up in a good reading chair by the window with a super comfy throw blanket, a great book, and a delicious smelling house. Thank you to my gorgeous friend Donna for the most amazing candle ever!!
The Sunday night festivities didn't end there... I was sooooo excited to make popcorn! We opted for the over the stove popper thingy. So exciting! It was like a mini adventure. We settled in on the couch with our popcorn to cuddle. Perfection <3

So here we are...Monday again! Time to get my booty into gear! But first...I must decide which color?! Orange or blue!
Along with Body Beast, we've been running through the beautiful Santa Monica neighborhood. I need some new kicks because sadly, mine are getting worn out! They recommend using them for only 500 miles (typically about 6 months or less!!) Booo!!