A Little of This, A Little of That…

Happy Friday!

Unlike recent weeks, I wasn’t SUPER OMG DESPERATE for this week to be over. It’s been a relatively quiet week at work (busy for sure, but not OMG-wanna-rip-my-hair-out stressful) and I have kept it similarly quiet at home — I’ve been laying low and been in bed by 10:30 every night!

I decided on Monday to give myself a little detox, so I’ve not only abstained from alcohol for the past 5 days, but I’ve also limited my handfuls of cashews at work, and spoonfuls of Nutella at home 😉

In addition to the detox and walking/biking to work every day, I ran twice (3 miles on Tues & 5 miles on Thurs) and did strength building exercises twice (on Weds and this morning):

Wednesday’s workout has been my tried & true upper body workout for almost a year now. It was pretty much the only strength training I did (1x per week) while training for my half…It gets in some good upper body work, but the better benefit may be the core strengthening that comes from all those planks! If I have time, I also finish up with V-ups and regular ol’ crunches for good measure.

 

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Because I’m not doing Thursday dodgeball this season, I enjoyed an early bedtime last night and a rare 6:30am Friday morning wake up call! I’ve been doing the above workout for so long that I decided to look for a new GPP Fitness workout to switch things up. I did 2 rounds of Cross Sectional, and I did the V-ups, Stab Situps and high windmills from t-AB-ata. My legs are burrrrning from Cross Sectional!

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ANYWAY, I digress. This totally wasn’t meant to be a Fitness post! I just wanted to pop in and share a few things I’ve enjoyed this week, and even a fun HANDWRITTEN quiz that I yanked from Christina at Hungry Meets Healthy. Enjoy!

 

75 Thoughts Every Runner Has While Out For A Run

LOVE. IT. My favorite is the thoughts that go through your head when you jump over puddles. Also, all the thoughts that go on in the last mile of your run.

 

AdvoCare Spark

My Blend-turned-Real-life friend Becky has been pumping up Advocare products for the past few months…I texted her yesterday that I ran out of my beloved pre-workout supplement (fitmixer Clean Energy) and she happened to have just gotten a bunch of variety packs of Spark, AdvoCare’s energy drink mix. I ordered some and can’t wait to try it! I’m not big on supplements, but I do like using a pre-workout drink before my long runs. I’ll be sure to report back on how I like it! If you’re interested, be sure to visit Becky’s blog or click one of the above links to be taken to her store!

 

The 10 Most Important Things We Learned from How I Met Your Mother

As you all probably know, How I Met Your Mother ended this week. Sadface. While I can’t say I’ve watched since the start of the show, I did start watching from the beginning about 4-5 years ago and have been hooked ever since. I love the writing, I love how they’ve kept us guessing about the Mother, and I lovelovelove the characters. I definitely cried multiple times during the series finale, and I have mixed feelings about how it ended, but I largely agree with this article about what went down. {spoiler alert in the article, obviously!}

 

And last but not least… you know those handwritten quizzes they have celebs fill out in Cosmo? Welp, I found one for bloggers! If you’re interested in filling it out, you can print out the blank template here. Enjoy!

SBIZHUBC28014040412060Before you say anything about liking my handwriting, please take note that I toootally spent 5x longer than usual writing out every single word to make sure it was legible. HA.

Have a great weekend!

What do you do to treat your body when you need to detox?

Are/were you a HIMYM fan?

Chocolate & Peanut Butter Protein Smoothie

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As I’ve probably mentioned lately, I’ve been focusing a lot more on upper body strength since I got my cast off at the end of August. And as my strength has increased, those who are my friends on Snapchat or who follow me on Instagram have had the pleasure of seeing multiple pictures of me flexing at the gym…whether they like it or not 🙂

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See? Obnoxious. I am the worst.

While I am probably in the best running shape of my life right now, I’m not interested in pushing myself too much further in that department distance-wise. I’m definitely looking forward to running more 10k’s and 5k’s…but I recently realized I wanted to work on improving my all-around fitness, which for me means increasing my muscle mass in areas other than my legs! (They are like freakin tree trunks, you guys. Running and biking everywhere will do that…)

I’m not gonna lie, it has been really great to see and feel improvements in my upper body strength — it’s always been a {literal!} weakness of mine. But I can now currently do 15 consecutive CORRECT push ups, and I don’t think I’ve ever been able to say that before! I’m not ashamed to say that I’m proud of myself 🙂 Hence the excessive Snaps and Insta pics of my guns. Haha.

Something I’ve been re-learning over and over throughout this process is the importance of protein post-workout. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve woken up the morning after a tough strength training workout (or after a plank-off at the dodgeball bar…) and have been extremely sore. The culprit for me, more often than not, is a lack of protein, which delays my muscle repair. I’m by no means a vegetarian, but I only eat meat a couple times per week and rarely do I buy it at home. So what’s a girl to do? One can only eat so much beans and quinoa…

Luckily for me, a way to ensure I get lots of protein was awarded to me last month when I was entered into a contest by the lovely Becky when she was at the Healthy Living Summit. We ended up winning the Ninja Ultima Blender, which is probably now the nicest piece of kitchen equipment I own! And the best part about it is that it has a single serving size (think Magic Bullet status) that makes it PERFECT for making protein smoothies!

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Now every Saturday after my long runs, I have the perfect tool for making sure I get my protein. Plus, I’ve perfected a recipe that not only refuels me, but it also basically tastes like a milkshake.

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This blender is soooo smooth! Also, for this particular smoothie I used Vega Sport Performance Protein, which I love for post-workout smoothies because it is specifically formulated to help build and repair muscles. I also use Onnit Hemp Force, which is great because Hemp protein provides a lot of fiber and is one of the most easily digestible sources of plant protein.

{Full disclosure: I received both for free at this year’s Blend Retreat}

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So grab your Magic Bullet, your blender, your food processor…whatever you have on hand! And make this smoothie after your work out. Your muscles will thank you for it. 🙂

Chocolate & Peanut Butter Protein Smoothie

1 small/medium banana, frozen (about 3/4-1 cup chopped)
1/2 cup frozen strawberries (optional)
1 tablespoon peanut butter
3/4-1 cup milk (I use unsweetened plain almond milk)
1 serving/3 scoops chocolate protein powder of choice

Add frozen fruit, peanut butter, protein powder, and 1/2 cup of the milk to blender. Blend until combined, adding 1/4 cup milk at a time if needed to achieve desired consistency. Once you’re sure of the consistency, keep the blender going for a good 30 seconds to make sure any chunks of fruit get blended in. Remove from blender and enjoy!

Notes: I added strawberries for a little extra sweetness, and because I didn’t have enough banana on hand. I’ve also substituted Greek yogurt for some of the milk for added protein, but you may have to add extra milk to get things movin’.

What is your favorite kind of protein?

How do you incorporate strength training into your workouts?