Protein packed smores’ bar

My workouts have been quite unstructured lately. Tessa recently posted about taking a week off from some serious workouts. I sort of hopped on the bandwagon as well. Once Kyle returned home, workouts definitely hit the back burner. On our trip to Boston, we decided to skip workouts and spend the day walking around and eating.

After 4 days of horrendous eating – desserts, bags of sugar coated nuts, a half a pizza, burgers, fries, more junk food, and little to no “workouts” – I assumed the worst: I would come back a blimp who lost endurance and muscle strength.

In reality: I didn’t gain weight, I came back into my workouts feeling better than ever, and felt rejuvenated!

I know the benefits of rest days but to take a few multiple rest days in a row helped my body to recover overall.

Rest days allow the body to

  • replenish energy stores and repair damaged tissues
  • It prevents a person from overtraining and leading into a possible worse injury – sidelining them from their goals even longer
  • Little detraining only happens after you take off more than 2 weeks
  • Prevents mental burnout

Runners world has a great article about it here!

So on my recent rest day I decided to do what I love most and bake!

Protein-packed pumpkin smores’

Ingredients: Protein bar recipe (cut the bread in half length wise), protein pudding, Jet-Puff

Protein Pudding:

  • 1 scoop chocolate-peanut butter ON casein (I’m sure whey would work as well but may need to vary liquids)
  • 1/2 cup almond breeze (liquid varies depending on preference of thickness)
  • 1 TBSP PB2 (optional)

Mix the ingredients together. I occasionally add 1/2 TBSP flax to thicken it up as well if I add too much liquid. Kyle LOVES this stuff. I make it in bulk for him. He spreads it on everything from ice cream, protein bars, or just eats as pudding.

We put it in the fridge to firm up a tad. It’s an awesome protein filled dessert.

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What are some of your favorite night time snacks?

Favorite protein powder?

Where do I get my carbs from?

The other day, someone questioned me about what happens when my body wants carbs?

Grains are not the only place our body gets carbs from. A cup of mashed sweet potato has 41g of carbs per serving, 1 medium banana has 27 g of carbs per serving, 1 cup of pineapple has 20 g of carbs. Bam. There is a total of 85 g of carbs that could easily be eaten post workout or throughout the day. (Yes a little high in sugar but nothing crazy). This total is not including other vegetables that are consumed during the day. A cup of oatmeal has 57g of carbs and lacks all the wonderful vitamins and nutrients I can get from fruits and vegetables – just showing the different no need to jump down my back people.

Giving up grains was easy for me. I knew a long time ago grains did not agree with my stomach but I didn’t realize I could eliminate them from my diet and be perfectly fine. As surprising as this may sound, I do not crave grains at all. I haven’t thought “oh man a bowl of oatmeal sounds great right now”. A bowl of oatmeal would actually make me feel worse.

However I haven’t been denying myself of foods that could be made from a different type of flour. These recipes do not increase my carb intake but if I’m feeling like I want something “bread like” I’ll opt for one of these choices.

I’ve been enjoying Felicia’s pumpkin protein bars everyday pre-workout.

I’ve also been making tons of coconut flour pancakes

and the other night I ventured out to make a coconut/almond flour biscuit

They are a huge hit in the new Paleo household - I'm easing everyone into the transition of Paleo. Having it around makes them forget about bread :) .

If you make this recipe, make sure to really whip the egg whites and put everything in the fridge when it tells you to – I believe doing these 2 things really made the recipe great. These biscuits were the equivalent to Red Lobster’s biscuits – flaky, warm, and delicious. Except they’re grainless and gluten free. :)

My body has been functioning fine on a low to moderate intake of carbs. If I’m feeling a little tired or off I will increase my carbohydrate intake – but again it depends on how I am feeling. So far no cravings but more importantly I’m feeling healthier and happier than I ever have in my life. My workout performance has increased exponentially, no more bloating after meals, and finally my fear of food is gone. Completely gone.

So what do I eat exactly to get carbs in? 

  • Any vegetable you can name
  • Fruits – bananas, berries, melons
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Squash – spaghetti, acorn, butternut

Everyone requires different nutritional needs. What works for me, may not work for someone else. I am not a nutritional expert this just my experience over the past few weeks.

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Have you experimented with different types of flours?

For those of you who aren’t interested in anything I’ve talked about – How was your weekend? Anything exciting happen?

Scrambled Pumpkin

Ever have one of those days where you are pretty sure you should not be allowed in the kitchen? Dropping things, spilling things, putting chili powder in the mix instead of cinnamon, forgetting flour. Yeap. A clear sign I should have stayed away this morning.

Instead I ended up with this – Pumpkin scrambled eggs. 

I didn’t mean for it turn into scrambled eggs – I was aiming for pumpkin pancakes. I went wrong somewhere along the way. Maybe it was the chili powder I put in the first batch?

So I attempted my second batch of “pumpkin pancakes” and instead ended up with scrambled pumpkin.

Was it good? Well, I ate it. It was spiced perfectly with cinnamon and nutmeg, the texture was definitely scrambled eggs but it tasted like pumpkin pie. It was interesting, to say the least. Would I have it again for breakfast? Yes, why not I love pumpkin pie flavored things. It was a great change for the usual scrambled eggs filled with spinach, veggies, cheese. I’m not going to say these were the best things ever but it was fun to have something different.

If only I had maple syrup… but PB2 came to the rescue

Yes the PB2 made it even better. If you would like to recreate my mistake in the kitchen just crack some eggs (2-3), I used 1 egg and 1/3 cup of egg whites and 1/2 cup of pumpkin, along with cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.

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My workout consisted of a shoulder day. Let me say, Fridays at the gym is the best, I believe this should become my leg day at the gym. Completely empty. These are the days I love the gym. But I can give you a host of reasons why the gym also gives me the heebie jeebies

  • watching people not wipe down the machines
  • The floor mats for everyones use
  • That person who supersets for 45 minutes on 4 different machines that you need.
  • The people you see and think “They’re going to have serious back issues in a few years”
  • Creepers who stare and follow you around
  • Seeing someone go from the elliptical, then the stair stepper, then back to the elliptical, then to the arc trainer, and onto the bike, and maybe the treadmill. (I see this all the time! from the SAME people!)
  • People who place all their weight on their arms when using the stair stepper

I consider it my entertainment for the day.

I’m off to study for my nursing license exam – 6 days until the big test. 

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What was your last mistake in the kitchen that turned out all right?

Do you have any gym pet peeves?