Archive for August, 2011

August 31, 2011

WIAT&W

Ready to see what I ate Wednesday? Actually, I ate this Tuesday, but I’m pretty much having the exact same thing today. Big surprise, eh?

After nearly entering a carb-coma** Monday, I decided to hit up spin class after work Tuesday. I usually hate exercising out after work, but I needed the extra burn of spin. 24.4 miles later, I definitely felt the burn! I also did this pilates workout in the morning and strength training right before the spin class.

**Seriously, I don’t know what came over me, but I had the maniac munchies on Monday!

Breakfast was half of a chewy Eat.Think.Smile bar (80 calories) before my workout. Second breakfast included plain, fat-free Greek yogurt (95 cal) with Kashi GoLean (70 cal) and 1 cup of blueberries (85 cal). That is such a filling breakfast!

Lunch was a turkey, cheese, and lettuce sandwich on Great Harvest Bread Co. bread (305 cal). That bread is daaaaang good! I paired it with Green Giant Baby Brussels (50 cal). Those frozen sprouts come in convenient single-serving pouches you can pop right into the microwave.

Snack was 7 almonds (50 cal) and a pear (105 cal). I also downed a rice cake (35 cal) as I was walking out of the office. It was just enough to get me through my workout… barely.

Dinner was a Tex-Mex scramble that I like to call Tiffos Rancheros. It came to approximately 380 calories and was a great post-workout, protein-packed meal. I can’t wait to make it again tonight!

This dinner made me very happy.

I took 3 pics of dinner because I’m a dork in hopes that at least 1 would look somewhat appealing.

See the fat-free re-fried beans poking out?

This dinner would have made someone else happy (she loves scrambled eggs), but I don’t think she’d like the salsa!

Sorry Leia - No Eggs for You!

My total daily calories only came to about 1255, which would normally be too low. However, given the aforementioned carb-coma and calorie overload yesterday, my body just didn’t feel like it needed much else. (Thank goodness!) Sometimes you’ve just gotta listen to the belly!

Check out Peas & Crayons for other awesome eats and meal ideas!

Do you ever have “hungry days” when you just don’t ever feel full? Goodness knows I do!

What’s the best thing you’ve had lately?

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August 30, 2011

Eat.Think.Smile… Win!

Yesterday evening, my giveaway came to a close. Thanks to all of you who entered. Now it’s time to announce the 5 winners!

Wait… nope… it’s not. First it’s time to talk about my workout, review some goodies, then announce winners! Ugh, I’m starting to sound like one of those reality show contests, but at least you don’t have to sit through awful commercials.

I had a great workout yesterday. I completed 35 minutes on the elliptical, and then I completed about 30 minutes of heavy lifting. I started a new workout, and I’ll share it with you a little later this week.

pumped up kicks

On a side note, having black cross trainers makes the walk to work less embarrassing. Stylin’!

I’ve had a chance to try more Eat.Think.Smile goodies since last week, but I still haven’t tried them all. I got most of them though, and it’s fairer to review the things that sound best to you, right? I think so.

The cocoa chewy bar was unique. It was a little too rice-y for me in texture (like Rice Krispies kind of rice), but the flavor was really good. I have mixed opinions on mixed berry. It was good, don’t me wrong. I’m just in the middle on this one, and I’m not sure why.

The salty thins were interesting too. They remind me of slightly puffed chocolate Teddy Grahams. These things weren’t particularly salty, so they won’t fix a salt craving. However, they seem like the perfect PMS food. They’re teeny, and you can eat 46 of ‘em before you reach 130 calories. Sweeeet.

I was most excited about the dark cherry baked nutrition bar and am so happy that I have extra to share with the winners. Eat.Think.Smile puts cocoa in their products for a big punch of antioxidant goodness, and what’s better than chocolate and cherry?

Not much. Unless it’s chocolate and cranberry! This cranberry & walnut granola was amazing! In fact, I pushed it deep into my pantry before I could polish off the entire bag. This stuff’s like candy – except better because I’m not a big candy person.

Okay… finally… and the winners are (drum roll please)…

  1. Allie at Forgotten Beast
  2. Lisa at Fit in the Midwest
  3. Jessica @ Stylish Stealthy and Healthy
  4. Claire
  5. Krissy @ A Philly Nerd Girl

Yaaay for giveaways! Yaaaaaaay for winners! Thanks to everyone for reading.

August 29, 2011

I joined the Dark Side.

Weekends go soooooo fast! After my relaxing night at home with a pizza, a little wine, and a book on Friday, I was ready to get out on Saturday. So here is a recap of my semi-healthy and super-fun weekend…

I enjoyed trashy magazines while getting my hair done (guilty pleasure) and stopped by the beer shop on the way home. Woohoo for fall ales, Oktoberfests, and pumpkin beers!

I then stopped at the pretty grocery store for lunch stuff. Delish! Even Kevin liked it.

After a few hours of boating, (no pics to share), I made the most awesome lasagna for dinner. It was waaaaay better than restaurant lasagna, and it was vegetarian and cheap. Winning!

We then went out around 10 p.m. and had a unique experience. For a buddy’s b-day, the group of us rented a cabana at a rooftop club. Then, believe it or not, we saw Bret Michaels. I didn’t believe it at first until his bodyguard escorted him away from the crowd. So crazy!!!

Can you see his headband??? Did you notice that I joined the Dark Side by going brunette???

Yup – that about summed up my Saturday. It rocked. Sunday on the other hand = chores and grocery shopping, but at least I got leftover lasagna and frozen yogurt!

Even if I had to eat it all by myself since Mr. No Sweets didn’t want any.

What was the best thing you did this weekend?

August 27, 2011

Unexpected

I have to workout, shower, get my hair done, and clean the house a bit for company, so this will be a short post. If you ask me, that’s too much to accomplish before 1o’clock in the afternoon!

I’ll start off by sharing my unexpected Friday. Nothing went as planned, but everything went relatively well. I planned to do easy cardio in the morning. Instead, I showed that stair climber who was boss and got ridiculously sweaty.

that's my do-you-believe-this-amount-of-sweat face

I planned to go out with friends, but instead, I didn’t. It was nice -not worth doing often- but nice. I planned to review a new ale for you, but I went with Spanish table wine instead of beer. It was dry, delicious, and cheap (maybe $7).

I planned to cook an Amy’s for-one frozen pizza, but instead of the for-one size, I found the larger one in my freezer. I planned to only eat 2/3, but I ate it all instead. It was pretty good, and it went great with the wine.

little plate, little wine glass, but lots of pizza

I’m such a planner that this rarely happens. Are you a planner? Or are most of your days full of the unexpected?

Since today’s post was short, I’ve put together a few extra links of good stuff.

If you haven’t entered my delicious giveaway, go do it! Good luck!

August 26, 2011

Snack Attack

First, I want to start off by saying that doing a full-body pilates workout before swimming laps is not the best idea. Tiny little muscles I barely notice were super tired, but at least I got a good workout!

Cooking with Shirataki noodles is another bad idea. Lots of people love these, but I am not a fan.

yummy... sike!

They look good, but they smell like fish. Gross. I have never wanted a 10-cent bag of Top Ramen as badly as I did while I stared disappointingly into my bowl of bleck.

Now on with today’s post… If you hadn’t noticed, I like snacks. Snacks help maintain your metabolic rate and keep you from eating off your arm come 3 or 4 o’clock in the afternoon. They also help you fuel for or help recover from a hard workout.

not all bars have beer and bad music

Keep in mind that I have no degree in nutrition/medicine/biology/physiology/whatever. I also have no certifications to help validate my musings. This is just what works for me. Maybe it will work for you too.

kitties need snacks too

To me, a snack should be under 200 calories but probably more than 100 (depending on your hunger level). I shoot for less than 2.5 grams of saturated fat when possible, that’s no die-hard rule. Here are a few tips from Shape Magazine:

I also try to pick snacks with fiber, protein and/or fat because they help keep you full and satiated. Your snack may not have all 3 like your meals, but that’s okay. I find protein is the most important for keeping me full. Here are a few examples of the snacks I’ve been loving lately:

  • 2% Cottage Cheese + Carrots
  • Yummus + Broccoli Florettes
  • Nature ‘s Path Hemp Bars (good for on-the-go)
  • Apple + Almonds***
  • Nut Butter + Brown Rice Cake
  • Half an Eat.Think.Smile Bar + Small Peach
  • Ice Cream Plain Greek Yogurt + Berries
  • Natural, Whole Wheat Crackers + 2% Cheese

***I have been riddiculed for counting my almonds. Those little buggars add up fast at 7 calories per almond! Healthy fat still makes you fat. (Sorry for using the “F” word too; don’t hate me.)

healthy fat = cashew

You can find tons of healthy snack ideas online. I think most ideas from magazines are over-processed, over-priced, and paid product placements, but they still occasionally have good finds. Here are just a few links to snack lists to get you started:

My biggest snacking rule – don’t eat something that you think tastes awful just because it’s “healthy.” You’ll be reaching for something yummy in no time!

Are you a snacker? What are some of your favorite snacks?

August 25, 2011

Eat, Think, Smile… and Eat Some More!

The awesome people at Eat. Think. Smile sent me goodies. Actually, they sent lots of goodies!

The boxes held individually wrapped baked nutrition bars in 3 exciting flavors, many boxes of different chewy bars, and numerous bags of various other munchies.

Yesterday morning, I ate half of a peanut chewy bar before my workout instead of my usual rice cake. It was much more filling! The bar tasted like baked oatmeal with a hint of chocolate – and of course there’s peanut flavor too! I really enjoyed this this one, though I didn’t find it particularly sweet or salty.

The orange & cranberry baked nutrition bar was only mediocre. The bitter taste reminded me of an overly bitter, dark chocolate bar without the chocolate awesomeness. (This is probably because they use “the natural antioxidant power of cocoa” in the bars. Seriously, check out that link; it’s interesting.)

The oatmeal raisin baked nutrition bar was much better. This bar also had that bitter cocoa taste, but it wasn’t as overpowering. The texture was like a mix between a cookie and a very dense bread.

Sadly, I did not have time to try all the Eat. Think. Smile products before writing this review, but I am sure I’ll try more goods once it’s time to announce the giveaway winners.

What did that say? You read correctly; it’s time for a giveaway! Yew! I’ll send 5 randomly selected readers a little bundle of goodness. The giveaway ends Monday at 5:00 p.m. ET, and I will announce a winner the following Tuesday, August 30. Here’s how to get in on this; you can enter up to 4 times!

  1. Leave a comment telling me which product intrests you the most.
  2. Follow my blog and/or subscribe via email. Leave a comment letting me know you did this.
  3. Follow me on Twitter @LoveSweatBeers, and leave a comment to let me know about it.
  4. Tweet something along the lines of, ” @LoveSweatBeers is giving away healthy treats at http://wp.me/p1xLfG-i7” and leave a comment letting me know you tweeted.

Good luck! And I’m sorry, but there are no bonus points for commenting about “world peace.” 😉

August 24, 2011

WIAW: Sandwich Edition

Yeehaw y’all – it is wiiiii-aaawwww (WIAW) time again.  Before I share my eats of the week, I’d like to share the link to the awesome Peas & Crayons WIAW Blog Party.  I recommend you hop over to check out all the other great eats.

Breakfast for the week includes a pre-workout rice cake and a post-workout parfait.  The parfait is about 95 calories worth of non-fat, plain Greek yogurt, 70 calories worth of Kashi GoLean cereal, and 85 calories worth of blueberries.  It’s berry filling.  (Forgive my embarrassing pun, but there really are a lot of berries in there!)

Lunch is both simple and wonderful.  I hadn’t purchased Great Harvest Bread Co. bread before, but I am sooooo glad I did this weekend.  I got a loaf of the honey whole wheat.  It was delicious and contained only 5 ingredients!

I’m having one large slice with 1 can of tuna, 2 or 3 TBS chipotle yummus, 1 or 2 leaves of iceberg lettuce.  I pair my simple sandwich with side of sliced bell pepper or zucchini.

filling, fibrous, and fatty (healthy fatty, that is)

Snack has been pretty awesome.  It involves 1 peach and 1 half of a nutrition bar.  Want more information about the bar?  Well you can’t have it.

Just Peachy

Sorry – that was the bratty only-child in me.  I’ll actually be happy to share the details, but you’ll have to wait.  (Psssst… The details are worth the wait because it involves a delicious giveaway.)

I’ve been utilizing leftovers for dinner this week, but I haven’t been abusing them.  I had the same thing Monday and Tuesday, which was a grilled onion and chicken sandwich on more of that awesome bread with lite cheddar cheese.  That too went with a side of green beans.

I’m also having the same thing tonight as Thursday, which will be some sort of Shirataki noodle stir-fry.  I’m pretty excited to try those suckers out!  I’ll let you know what I think of them tomorrow.

Oh, and I definitely had some after-dinner treats.  Monday was a bar I can’t tell you about yet, and Tuesday was a 100-calorie bag of popcorn.  Mmmmm… salty goodness!  My last note, I was so proud of myself for turning down office sweets yesterday.  Woohoo!!!

Do you typically snack after dinner?  If so, what’s your go-to snack?

Also, thanks for all the sweet bday wishes.  You guys made it more special than a typical Tuesday!

August 23, 2011

It’s my birthday, and I’ll blog if I want to.

Despite the lingering food coma and the time change from the weekend’s travel, yesterday wasn’t awful. That’s surprising for a Monday! Don’t get me wrong, I was still in dire need of caffiene, but it could have been worse.

Maybe it was the kitty snuggles in the morning, or it was my good workout that helped. Maybe it was that I wore these adorable shoes.

Pretty Shoes!

Then again, maybe Monday went relatively well because I was excited about my birthday.

Flashback to My 21st Birthday

Happy Birthday to me! Yaaaaayyyyyy! Okay – that’s about enough of that. I got all the celebrating out of my system this weekend. This is more-or-less a typical Tuesday. There’s just 1 minor difference: additional self reflection.

I’m done celebrating, but I still have things to think about. It’s not like you turn a quarter-century old every day! I’ve done a lot; I’ve seen a lot. And I am pretty excited for the next quarter-century.

24 was a great year for me. In fact, it may have been my best yet… well, I’m not sure if it topped year 4. I think that was a good year too, but I guess it doesn’t count if I can’t remember most of it. I’m sad to let go of 24, but I’m happy to be moving on.

*****

Early in the post, I briefly mentioned yesterday’s good workout, and I’d like to fill you in on it. The workout included 30 minutes of intervals on the elliptical trainer, along with a cool-down, and the “Monday” portion of Muscle & Fitness HersVacation Countdown” workout.

I really enjoy this circuit workout, but I may cut it a week short. I still kinda’ feel the burn, but I’m in the mood to lift heavy. Next week, be prepared for a new routine.

Today will include some pool time and yoga or pilates. Wish me luck with my laps!

I look like a bum in the gym 90% of the time.

Oh, and for those of you who read my pre-birthday post, the eye cream is working marvelously!

August 22, 2011

Picture A Fun Weekend

Kevin and I packed our bags and headed west this weekend. Well, not too west, just out to the Midwest to see my parents. We had a fun weekend of good food, good beers, and great company.

I spent a bit of quality time with the fam (and their two adorable kittens) Friday night. We started the evening with pale ales and India pale ales from Boulevard Brewing Company. Both were great! I thoroughly recommend them.

Later that evening, Kevin got an IPA from 75th Street Brewing that tasted of hops and grapefruit. I had a Tallgrass Brewing Company brown ale. Both were quit tasty and went well with the fig, prosciutto, and caramelized onion pizza.

We shopped alllllll day Saturday. By the way, has anyone seen this sweet product – love it!

After a yummy BBQ dinner, we all had my mom’s awesome blackberry cobbler for dessert. It was my version of birthday cake.

Due to all these indulgences, I tried to make Sunday a little healthier. I cooked salmon for the first time, and it actually turned out pretty well. I served it atop a bed of black beans, spices, and veggies. Delish!

Kevin made the mistake of letting Leia try a mini bite of his salmon, and she quickly jumped in his lap with hopes for more. Can you see her tongue reaching for it??? What a goof!

If you could have any dessert for your birthday, what would it be?

August 20, 2011

Matter of Fact, It’s the Weekend

It’s the weekend! Did it catch you by surprise? No? Me neither. Matter of fact, I was practically counting down the hours, not that I don’t love my job or anything…

Speaking of facts, here are some random fun facts for you. You’ve got an assignment – give me 2 random facts about yourself. They could be likes, dislikes, hidden talents, goofy fears, or interesting learning experiences. You get bonus points for funny learning experiences.

  1. I still dream of the fried feta I ordered (numerous times) in Greece.
  2. I never take bubble baths because I get too bored.
  3. I wonder why people my age smoke cigarettes. Come on; we grew up with Red Ribbon Week!
  4. Kev and I met in calculus class at 8:00 a.m. one morning. How romantic…
  5. I love weddings.
  6. I have cat toys littered all around my house – even under a couch or two.
  7. I don’t understand the food truck craze. I like it because I like food, but I don’t get it.
  8. I am not a fan of cupcakes. There. I said it. Don’t hate me.
  9. I hate sitting alone in a room. I had a tv in my room growing up, but I was never in there. I think I watched it 3 times in the 10 years I had it.
  10. If I had to pick one food to eat forever, it’d be pizza. (Bet you coulda’ guessed that!)

Anything interesting? Surprising? Waste of your time? No, don’t answer that last one. J

Have a super weekend, and be sure to check in Monday for a recap. It might include some of this…

20110820-083135.jpg

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