Training and I’m feeling a little dippy

Wow the past 2 days have almost been an entire blur! I’ve been in ASIST training at work and it’s consisted of a lot of information jam-packed into 48 hours of intense hands on group work!

asist

For those who don’t know about ASIST, it stands for Assisted Suicide Intervention Skills Training. As I work in a school board as a wellness coach, a big part of my job has actually been counselling with students and that includes cases that unfortunately can reach this point where they are in need of serious supports.

I’m definitely happy that I completed the course and know that it will be 100% helpful to me in the future within my job. For anyone debating whether or not to complete this workshop, I would definitely recommend it! It included a lot of experiential hands-on group work and open discussion and role playing. The role playing can obviously be a tad bit awkward but you get past that!

For lunch we opted for a timmies run! Can never go wrong with that. I tried the new spicy thai chicken soup, and yuuum! I loved it. I found it so amazing because I absolutely adore coconut and it had just enough of coconut-y flavour! I will definitely be getting that again the next time that I need a quick lunch.

delicious coconuty thai goodness
delicious coconuty thai goodness

I didn’t end up doing my usual morning gym session before the workshop today because I’m heading to hot yoga in about half an hour, but yesterday I tried yet another new workout!

Have you heard of the Nike Training App?

nike-training-club-app

My friend recently introduced it to me and I’m giving it a rave review! I gave it a go yesterday because as we all know, I need to constantly switch up my gym routine otherwise I get bored as heck and just end up dreading going. This app is amazing because the amount of workouts is extensive! Soo many choices and variations. And it’s in a video format with step by step talking directions so you can put your phone down and just listen to them tell you what to do!

There’s workouts that target particular areas of the body, whole body, cardio-based, strength based, even marathon training specific workouts!!! Not only that, but it offers either a beginners, intermediate or advanced workouts sections. like JEEZE I can not express how much I am loving this app!!!!

Yesterday I did a core-targeted workout called ‘to the core’. It was all strength based moves to really get at those abs and my abs are actually HURTING today! I’m not even kidding you. And that has not happened to me in a while, so yes, I am thoroughly impressed.

Oh, did I mention it’s free?

Anyway, enough of that. Now on to fooooood.

I love food, yes this is no secret. And lately I’ve been really into dips. Dip with everything! Veggies, crackers, bread, fruit, anything. Two dips that I’ve been loving lately: cookie dough dessert dip (amazing) and my lightened up taco-dip (amazing x2). Both were a hit with my gal pals when we had our ladies night this week while we also consumed wine and made fun of the bachelor.

It’s a weekly ritual that I look thoroughly forward to!

So here are the recipes for you to try out (trust me you want to try these out).

Cookie dough dessert dip aka the easiest dip in the history of life

cookie-dough-dip-healthy-742x434

Ingredients:

1 cup light coolwhip
1 cup cookie mix
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Blend together and TADAH! I told you, the world’s easiest dip. Serve this with apple slices, graham crackers, pear slices and grapes.

Lighted up taco dip

taco-dip

Ingredients

2 tablespoons light cream cheese
1 cup 0% sour cream
1 tsp taco seasoning
2 tablespoons light mayo
1/2 cup mild chunky salsa
shredded low fat cheddar cheese to spread over top

Directions:

1. Blend together softened cream cheese, sour cream and mayo until well mixed.
2. Mix in taco seasoning until fully blended.
3. Layer this mixture onto the bottom of a bowl or dip dish.
4. Spread the salsa over top of the mix as a second layer.
5. Sprinkle cheddar cheese over top

Then you’re all done. Easy peasy yet again 🙂 I love these with any classic veggies and pita or tostitos ofcourse.

Bring either of these dips to a gathering and they’ll be a big hit!

Fitness Watch Comparisons

I need some serious assistance!

I’ve been looking into the benefits of wearing a fitness/health tracker for a while now. I know I have definitely reached the point where I want to purchase one because I’ve heard so many great reviews! I’m an avid runner and gym-goer, so I’m definitely looking to purchase a product which will track my steps, HR, and calories burned. I really would like it to have the ability to track my sleep as well so that I am able to link this all to my iPad or computer and look at the comparisons from day to day. I think this will definitely push me even further into the right direction with my fitness – any sort of added motivation to be healthy everyday is good with me!

I’m at a loss and can’t seem to decide exactly which fitness band/watch I want to purchase. It seems like there are sooo many on the market today!

The bands that I have been hearing the most about are: FitBit charge or flex, Polar, and nikefit band

3015771-poster-fitness-band-report-poster

What are your reviews if you have or have tried these watches? Any other kinds that I’m unaware of that you might recommend??

Updates and weekend motivation

Hey friends!

It’s been another long week at work and I haven’t had the time I would have hoped to keep the blog updated.

work train

Myself and my wellness team were hard at work with one of the elementary schools we work in and had a fun filled SUPERHERO health theme! It was so awesome and fun for the kids.

I also got to go and make real homemade pizzas with the local outreach school students. They were so thrilled and were stuffed to the max afterwards!

pizza making line

This week also called for a hike to a new found lake in our area of Northern Alberta. The lake itself didn’t even have a sign identifying it’s name or anything. So Colt and I pretended it was our own little lake and called it just that – Little Lake. 🙂

little lake

And something else really awesome happened for me this week! I won a contest!!!!!! YAHOO 🙂 🙂

pure excitement naturebox

Take a look at this NatureBox! I won a free 6 month subscription where they mail organic and healthy goodie boxes to my door!!! I can’t wait to receive my first one. 🙂 It’s all thanks to Julie Fagan from PBFingers ! Another reason to follow her amazing blog.

But I’m also here now and ready to chat with you about MOTIVATION.

So here’s the scenario… You’ve worked hard alllll week long. You’ve kept up with your workout regimes and strictly adhered to your diet. It’s fairly easy during the week, especially if you’re working a 9-5 job. But then, Saturday and Sunday roll around and all you’re looking to do is either chill out or make time for friends.

But you know that if you keep up with your fitness and health – whether it’s a walk, bike, anything to get moving – you will burn some calories and feel so much better than slugging around!

I’m sure most of us can relate to this feeling. I know I sure can.

But I’ve come up with some of my own ways to try to keep myself motivated on the weekends and ensure I don’t throw a wrench in all of the hard work I’ve put in during the week! (I know I don’t want to be getting up at 5:30 am for no good reason!)

health

Lay out my gear the night before

If it’s Friday night or Saturday night and I want to get a sweat session on in the morning, I will lay out the things I’ll be needing so it’s RIGHT in front of my face. Can’t ignore that.

Set my alarm using an upbeat tune

If my alarm sets off a tune that gets me pumped up and in a good mood then I am much more likely to get my body moving! And if you still don’t make it to the gym or outside then at least you get some good dance moves in. 😉

Set a date

This is probably the best one for me. If I set a date with my boyfriend, friend, or family members then there is very little chance I will be skipping out. It’s tough to bail on the people you love!

Plan to try something new

Sign up for that class you’ve been thinking about at your gym! Or if you’re into running, try going to the lane swim. Or take a look at what your community has to offer! There’s so many cool ways to get in shape these days – barre, zumba, yoga, rock climbing, the possibilities are endless!

Think about the goals you have for yourself

Remind yourself of the person you want to be and the level of fitness you want to achieve. Not to mention the positive endorphins you’ll be feeling afterwards.

motivate

Work it out Wednesday

Sooo I’ve began phase 1 of the Jamie Eason program. Instead I’ve put a bit of my own twist on it because I’m already an active person with overall good healthy habits.

I’m going by my own diet program, less so a diet and more so just continuing to make the healthy food choices I do everyday – the foods that I know make me feel good and make my body feel good and fueled.

In terms of the exercise regime, I gotta admit I’ve been a major cardio girl, just like many others! Phase 1 of this program calls for no cardio AT ALL and that’s not okay with me! I need my running and intense sweat sessions that come from great cardio. It keeps me sane, happy and energized. So I decided that I would do her strength training days while adding in the cardio that I’d like each day (which ranges about 4-6 miles daily along with a Long run on weekends).

My goal –> to gain muscle and strength!

So far so good I gotta say! I only am on day 3, but I’m definitely enjoying having everything laid out for me and ready to go in my email. Idiot proof 🙂

Today’s workout :

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My shoulders are hurting in the best way!!

For my morning smoothies I’ve also been using this magnificent cup!

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My girl friend gave it to me this summer on one of our camping trips and ive seriously put it to good use! I love getting little presents like this that end up being an essential part of my everyday 🙂

I need your help!

Hello beautiful people 🙂

I’m looking into beginning a new fitness regime and am intrigued by Jamie Eason’s 3-phase workout plan. 

jamie-eason-live-fit-main-570x420

This plan revolves around 3 phases, each 4 weeks, totalling 3 months long.

I’m wondering who out there has tried this program? 

If you have tried it what did you think?

I am considering beginning this program and posting my reviews and thoughts on the program along the way!

4 Ingredient cookie

So I’m in the middle of my day at work right now, having a little bit of a break.

In the high school we are working on a kindness campaign to spread as much joy and happiness in the community and amongst the schools as possible. A part of this campaign is baking up a storm in the school’s kitchen with the junior high students and dispersing them amongst the classrooms with positive messages.

One particular baked good that we made turned out being one of my new favourites. And it’s SO simple to boot. It’s a 4-ingredient cookie (my kinda cookie!) So I thought I’d share the recipe. You likely have these ingredients in your cupboard already so don’t be afraid to go home and give these cookies a whirl, they’re good for sharing (and to consume on your own hehehe) Plus you shouldn’t feel guilty having a couple of these because they are uber clean and healthy. Perfect combination I’d say!

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 4 tablespoons of peanut butter (I prefer all natural)
  • 1 tablespoon egg whites

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Mix all ingredients in a large bowl until well blended together, use the mixture to form round cookie balls and place on a baking sheet
  • Bake for 16-18 minutes
  • Let cool for 10 minutes or so
  • Eat them up! Or hide them away so they don’t magically disappear from family, friends, roommates..

Keep in mind you can also add anything else to the mix! Nuts, chocolate chips, raisins, it’s all up to you and your taste buds!

Yes, they are as good as they look.
Yes, they are as good as they look.

Protein pancakes & Work it out Wednesday!

I don’t normally have pancakes in the morning.. but when I do, I make sure that they are the most epic and delicious pancakes EVER. Which brings me to my recipe today…

I got this recipe from an old friend from highschool and uni!! Thanks Parisa!

 Protein Pancakes
Ingredients (for 3 pancakes):

proteinnnn

½ cup of rolled oats
1 scoop of vanilla whey protein powder
½ a banana
1 tsp coconut flour  (optional, but adds fluffiness)
1tsp of stevia (or sweetener of choice- keep it natural)
3 egg whites
1 tsp hemp seeds (optional)
1 tsp chia seeds (optional)
cinnamon (optional)
almond butter
fruit and walnuts for garnish (optional)
coconut oil
Directions:
Combine the protein powder, oats, coconut flour, seeds, stevia and cinnamon
Mush half the banana and mix with the egg whites
Mix the wet mix with the dry mix until you have a desired pancake consistency- you may need to add a little bit of water if the mix isn’t smooth enough

fryin' them up!
fryin’ them up!

Heat the skillet, and cook the pancakes in coconut oil for about 2 minutes on each side (until golden brown)
Next is the fun part – add your favourite toppings to garnish the pancakes
I used almond butter to replace syrup, the other half of my banana, some blueberries and walnuts. I also sprinkled some cinnamon and try to add it to as many recipes I can because it’s a natural fat burner and makes any dish smell and taste delicious! These pancakes are the perfect breakfast to have after a workout, or even before because they will give you a ton of energy. I have tried a few powders, and so far I like Power Whey the best. You can buy it at any supplement store such as Popeye’s or GNC for approximately $40 for 908 grams which will last you a long time, especially if you use it only for baking and cooking. If you are sensitive to whey protein powder, there are other options (vegan powders) that you can use instead.  These pancakes are PACKED with nutrients, leave you full and I promise your taste buds will thank you, so give these bad boys a try! 🙂

Yes I ate them all :)

WORKOUT

This morning I worked out before heading to school for work.
Here was my routine:

work it out wedneday

It was a good and sweaty session! On top of this, I also did 35 minutes on the elliptical. After work today I also upped my cardio by going on a nice speed walk with my doggy Tanner! Gotta enjoy this nice weather while it’s here! 🙂

How did you spend your ‘work it out’ wednesday??

Fires and fun

Yesterday’s lunch consisted of spaghetti squash ‘pasta’, yum yum was that ever good. I just wish this squash was easier to prepare. I mean, it is relatively easy but I like things to be realllll simple, especially when it comes to cooking for just myself.

spaghetti-squash-veggie-casserole-2

But it DOES look good right?
You half the squash, bake it at 375 for 40 minutes, scoop out the insides (noodles) and then mix in your veggies, sauce, whatever you’d like. I added cheese on top too ofcourse. 🙂

Later on, my friends and I had a big bonfire on hole 9 of the golf course just outside of town. Our friend happens to own the place, so it was completely legal don’t worry! It was a well spent night…

fiaaa

This morning’s breakfast was another oatmeal creation! You probably aren’t surprised by this. Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of it, forgive me, but it wasn’t overly complicated and I’m sure you can imagine what it might look like. I combine banana, PB and cocoa powder in a blender with some vanilla yogurt and ice and mixed this into my oatmeal. YUM

I also forgot to take my daily dose of vitamins yesterday. D’oh! I tend to really notice when my body doesn’t get enough hydration nor the vitamins that I usually take to get me through the day.

vitamin daily

This is what I normally take…

B-complex. Vitamin D, fish oils, calcium magnesium, women’s multi-vitamin, and there’s an advil there as well in order to keep any inflammation in my knee down.

Being a runner, I’ve started making sure to take my calcium magnesium because it’s so vital in healthy bones and joints. It’s better to be preventative rather than too late, right!?

Workout

Today’s workout:

20 minute elliptical warm up

ABS, this routine got my heart pumpin’ and abs burnin’!

go through these moves non-stop without a break and then rest, repeat 3 times through.

45 second plank
15 superman
12 woodchops (then did other side)
15 stability ball legs to arms pass
12 stability ball lower ab tuck ins
30 second mountain climber
10 burpees

TADAH!

If you give it a go you’ll be feeling great afterwards trust me 🙂

I finished up my workout with a 25 minute run/walk outside, I am still trying to take it easy because of my knee.

outdoorsy

Ah I love the outdoors!

Now I am going out to meet up with a pal, chat soon. 🙂

me out

Friday morning smoothie and workout

Ahhhh I have a few spare minutes this morning so I thought I’d share with you my early morning workout today!

It consisted of:

40 minutes of HIIT on the treadmill. It looked like this routine below:

Min.              Speed                Incline

0-2               2-3                     1
1-3                 6                      1
3-4                6.5                    1
4-5                7                       2
6-7               7.5                     2
7-9                8                       1
9-11              6.7                    1
11-15            6.5                    2
15-16            8                      1
16-17            9                      1
17-20            6.3                   2
20-22            6.6                   1
22-24            6.8                   1
24-25            7.5                   1
25-26            8.5                   1
26-28            6.5                   2
28-30            6.7                   2
30-32            7.5                   1
32-33            8                      1
33-35            6.7                   1
35-38            6.5                   1
38-40            6                      1

I loves me a good HIIT workout, it gets your heart pumpin’ so good and you always feel like you worked hard afterward. It’s especially nice for me in the morning because I always feel like I start on the right foot.

I then took it fairly easy. I did some pilates core work consisting of planks and stability ball work. Then I stretched it out.

smoothie

My smoothie today is a weird concoction. I am in need of upping my veggie intake so I used some of the Progressive vegan vegegreens powder in blueberry medley flavour, then mixed in half a banana, ice, 1/2 cup almond milk, stevia, cinnamon and 1/3 cup oats.

veggiegreens

It’s actually fairly good tasting! And nearly 8 servings of vegetables in it! Talk about SUPERFOOD

Sounds interesting to say the least. It was pretty good, but I still prefer my all time favourite PB and banana smoothies in the morning 🙂

handful of almonds

I also had a handful of almonds because I was starving after hitting the gym this morning. BAH!

What is your favourite breakfast smoothie?? I need new recipes to try!