9.14.2011

Pin that! Exercise Motivation

Since having baby 5 months ago with the addition of moving and huge amounts of traveling, I have had a hard time getting back into my regular exercise routine.  The last couple of weeks I have finally got onto somewhat of a schedule, but I still need motivation to keep it up. So I turned to pinterest to give me some motivation...
here are some random thoughts that keep me going!  
Most importantly I should follow this..... {I need this posted right above my computer}. 

 source.
 source
source
 source
 source
ARE YOU MOTIVATED YET!? 

7.06.2011

Zucchini Dessert Squares

I know I haven't posted in forever but I made this vegetable dessert the other day and wanted to share the recipe with you all. {Disclaimer- this isn't a super healthy dessert- still lots of sugar, flour, and butter. It's just a great alternative and way to use up all your zucchinis}.

So it's that time of year where if you have planted zucchinis you def. have a surplus of them. And if you don't have a surplus I am sure that you have a neighbor or two that are trying to get rid of some.  You have probably used all your recipes are are ready to try something new.  
Trust me.... You don't even have to like zucchini to like it.  

{I promise it tastes just like an apple crisp-- weird I know, but it doesn't taste a thing like zucchini}. I didn't tell some of my family what it was and they thought it was apple crisp.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 cups cold butter

  • FILLING:
  • 8 to 10 cups cubed seeded peeled zucchini (4 to 5 pounds)
  • 2/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Directions

  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Cut in butter until crumbly{I used my hands to crumble it up}; reserve 3 cups. Pat remaining crumb mixture into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Bake at 375° for 12 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, for filling, place zucchini and lemon juice in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 6-8 minutes or until zucchini is crisp-tender. Stir in the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg; cover and simmer for 5 minutes (mixture will be thin). It smells delish.
  • Spoon over crust; sprinkle with the reserved crumb mixture. Bake at 375° for 40-45 minutes or until golden. Yield: 16-20 servings.

Let me know if you try it and if you think that it tastes anything like Zucchini! 

2.01.2011

Valentine Fruit!

I love this idea of Fruit Valentine Stickers from Thig & Thistle
She provides a free printable for apples, pears, oranges, bananas, passion fruit, blue berries and a general one for anything else you want to add some love to.   
What a cute way to send some Valentine Love to those you love.... 
A little gesture to make your special someone or child know that you care! The perfect way to spice up the lunch box the week before Valentines Day.  
Check out all the stickers and the free download HERE.

1.28.2011

Is Breakfast really that Important?

You have all heard it before....  
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.... 
 So is that the truth? 
I for one don't know why anyone would NOT want to eat breakfast.... I wake up and one of the first things that I look forward to is eating..
But I know many of you think differently- whatever the reason. 
-you are trying to lose weight
-you want to save your calories for later 
-it makes you feel yucky
-you don't like breakfast foods
-you don't have time
Whatever your reason is I am here to give my two cents that I believe that  
Breakfast IS very important.... and I like to think it is the MOST important meal of the day. 
Here's why.. {especially if you are trying to lose weight}.

**You've been fasting overnight without food or water--- for an average of 8-12 hours {Break-fast is called breakfast for good reason},
Eating breakfast helps keep your body from sending messages to your metabolism to slow down and conserve your calories. If your body's cells do not receive sufficient nutrients-energy they begin to function less efficiently and will actually store more fat to use during these times of nutritional deprivation.
Skipping Breakfast can also lead to intense hunger, making it difficult to make wise food choices later {I tend to eat much more for lunch if I didn't have anything for breakfast}.

So If you don't eat something after that long fast, your body will begin to sense that you are starving and slow down your metabolism to conserve the fuel and not work as efficiently.
Translation- your body is burning calories at a slower rate which if you are trying to lose weight is not what you want happening. Instead you want to Boost your metabolism and have your body burn calories more quickly and earlier in the day.   

Breakfast really is ESSENTIAL.
For all you breakfast haters--- your breakfast doesn't have to be huge.
It can be as simple as:
The more fiber the better though... It make you stay  fuller longer!! So fill up on Whole grains and fruits! 

1.27.2011

Food By State!

I ran into this map at My Food Looks Funny and thought it was interesting if nothing else. 
What do you think? Is your state represented well? 
Here is my two cents--
*Utah-- Green Jello... Of course but really?  I know they say that more green jello is sold in Utah than anywhere else but in my 25 years of growing up and I must say that it was not eaten all that much-- really hardly ever.  Maybe red jello but green?  Not sure what else I would have assigned Utah with though?
*Massachusetts... spot on with 'Clam Chower.' I  could uses a bowl of some good New England Chowda for lunch today. 
*Iowa... I would say Corn first and foremost- but with Nebraska having taken the honor(which makes sense), I guess 'loose-meat sandwiches' (aka sloppy joes, maid-rites etc.) fit the bill.  I mean they were invented here... and are quite often on menus around these parts. Me not being a fan hasn't had one since I have lived here though.... maybe I better get on that.

1.26.2011

Easy Exercise Pregnancy Goal

As a follow up to yesterdays post, I think a very reasonable goal for all pregnant women (or anyone for that matter) is to...
Log at least 1 mile a day. (not counting your normal walking etc.) 
 Either by walking, jogging, or running! Of course it is recommended that you do more that just 1 mile.   
The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends 30 minutes or more of moderate exercise per day on most if not all days of the week, unless you have a medical or pregnancy complication. 
30 minutes--- so simple.  And really 1 mile.  You can't come up with a good excuse not to for only that distance.  

I made this a goal when I first found out I was pregnant and can say that for almost every week for at least 5x during the week I have logged in1+ miles. Having this goal-- really helped me get out of bed on those mornings when I felt far from great during the 1st trimester. I also found that once I got exercising, I wasn't thinking so much about how crappy I felt and instead focused on the exercise. I can say that on most days after returning from exercising I have more energy and feel better!


*some situations this may not be possible or safe. Consult Dr. before any serious exercise regimen  

1.25.2011

Exercise during Pregnancy Myths and Facts!

(sorry to all you non-pregnant readers-- I promise there won't be too many posts dedicated to pregnancy)  

I am getting near the end of my pregnancy.... the last trimester.. yahoo!! I have always tried to be consistent in my exercise program so when I became pregnant I did not want to get out of the habit.  So in the beginning months, I did lots of researching on pregnancy and exercise. Before getting pregnant I had heard all kinds of things about what I should and shouldn't do as far as exercise during pregnancy. I've had friends that swear on running and continuing to exercise throughout their whole pregnancy and others that were so scared to do any sort of more intense physical activity.  
What is FACT and what is the MYTH?
I found this great article by Colette Bouchez on WebMD that helped me really know what is safe... Click here to read the whole article. I will highlight a few main points from the article. 
**Remember that everyone is different and you should consult your Dr. before any exercise program**

Fact #1: If you were a runner before pregnancy, you can continue to run during pregnancy.

As long as you and your pregnancy are healthy, and you feel OK, experts say it's safe to run right up until you go into labor. If it does start to feel "odd," she says, listen to your body and don't do it. It is not the time to break any performance records.  Realize that as your pregnancy progresses, you're going to be able to do a little less with each trimester (yep def. started noticing this). So don't compete with your pre-pregnancy running achievements.

Fact #2: Not every exercise is safe to do during pregnancy.

Exercises involving balance, like biking or skiing, or contact sports like soccer and basketball can be risky during pregnancy. After the fourth month, your balance is affected. That's when you don't want to do anything that will put your body in an unstable position.

Myth #1: Never get your heart rate over 130 while exercising during pregnancy.

There is no one "target" heart rate that's right for every pregnant woman.

Myth #2: It's not safe to do abdominal work during pregnancy.

Not only is it OK, experts say ab workouts can provide many benefits. "Strengthening your abdominal and core will help not only during pregnancy, but may also aid in labor and delivery -- and recovery," says Sue Fleming, a certified fitness instructor.  You should avoid any exercises that you have to do on your back after the first trimester. Fleming suggests gentle standing pelvic tilts, seated belly breathing, or tightening abs, holding, then releasing, as good ways to keep ab muscles in top condition.

Myth #3: If I exercise too much during pregnancy, I will pull nutrients from my baby so he/she won't grow properly.

 The reality is that your baby is going to get what it needs. So if anything, you'll have a dip in your own nutrient stores, but your baby's stores will be fine. The way to avoid any problems for you, is to keep blood sugar levels balanced by eating smaller, more frequent meals.

Myth #4: If I never exercised before pregnancy, now is not the time to start.

If you never excised before, pregnancy is not the time to become an exercise fanatic, but that doesn't mean you have to spend nine months sitting on the couch. Something as simple as taking a daily walk or going for a swim can do wonders for your pregnancy, and make you feel better as well. It may also help you combat the fatigue of pregnancy and help you sleep better at night. Start slow! 

So get out and exercise!! It will help you avoid that excess weight gain, helps against fatigue, reduces back aches, and increases your mood. 

1.24.2011

Is it ok to give my child more than 1 gummy vitamin?

I was recently asked a question about whether it is okay to give our children more than one gummy Vitamin a day... 

Gummy Vitamins are made by keeping kids in mind and usually have relatively low doses of many vitamins and minerals. (they are usually not even 100% of the recommended daily value). So in most cases taking 2 or 3 vitamins a day are most likely not going to cause any problems. (2 gummies a day is often the recommended serving size on many brands and for kids that are 4+) Again check your label.  

Even with that said-- it is still possible to overdose if you eat more than the recommended daily allowance of some vitamins. If your child has gotten a hold of the vitamins and eaten them like candy-- or even consistently over time is getting excess of some vitamins I would be worried-- You can call poison control just in case! 

Here are the main concerns:  
Gummies with IRON (check your label) present the biggest danger of overdose problemsIf your gummies do contain Iron- and your child has eaten quite a few, it may be wise to call the Poison Control Hotline.  (most children's gummies don't contain Iron). Iron poisoning can be fatal.  

There are also two categories of vitamins- water soluble(B,C) and fat soluble(vitamins A,D,E,K).

Fat-soluble vitamins(A,D,E, and K) may also pose a risk of overdose. These vitamins are stored in the body if an excess amount is taken.  
Too much vitamin A can be dangerous. One of the first signs of this is yellowish-orangeish skin. Many of the first signs of the these vitamin overdoses are nausea, vomiting, bloating, constipation or other Gastrointestinal problems.  

Water soluble vitamins, such as vitamin C, are really no danger in terms of overdose because any excess taken will be flushed out and leave the body during urination. Your child's urination may turn a darker color and may have an odor.  
Excess Niacin (Vitamin B3) may cause a rash or red flushing of the skin. This should subside after a few hours of the overdose-- so nothing to worry about.  

It is better to be safe than sorry. Store the vitamins out of reach of children and read the label and follow the recommended serving amounts and you won't have to worry.