It’s Monday so I’m Cooking

Monday mornings are my cooking days.  It’s 8:43am right now and I have a huge pot of vegetable soup simmering on the stove, some boneless pork ribs in the slow cooker and chicken breasts poaching in some broth.

I love my vegetable soup.   It’s got onions, celery, carrots, mushrooms, chopped green beans and cabbage and I’ve added some tomato paste and half a jar of salsa for some kick.  I don’t follow a recipe I just add whatever veggies I have on hand.  Of course I liberally add garlic, spices and red pepper flakes.  (Did I mention I like a kick?).

This soup will be my lunch for the week.  I’ll ladle a bunch into a bowl and add 1/2 c of garbanzo or black beans and about 4 ounces of chicken (hence the chicken cooking on the next burner).  Some days I skip the chicken and go vegetarian.  As it gets later in the week I’ll add some other leftover protein in there to make it a meal.  It has a ton of veggies in each serving and is a filling, hot lunch at the office.

The ribs are for dinner tonight.  We have softball and volleyball (my daughter) and my son has baseball so it’s either eat at home or out.  Again.  I love to eat out but making healthy choices out can be challenging and besides, I ate out the past 2 days.  I’ll make rice and a huge salad and it will round out the meal nicely.

Prepping food for the week is a great habit to get into.  I find that it helps me stay on track with healthy eating and ensures I’m not forced to grab food on the go.  We don’t always make great choices when we are at the store and we’re hungry.  You may be able to relate.

My family is used to the house smelling like a restaurant when they wake up on Mondays.  Pots and pans and dishes strewn about as I’m chopping and sauteing, it’s kind of chaotic.  But it’s going to taste so good!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

 

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Ode to the Avocado

I LOVE avocados!  They are great in place of mayo or mustard on a sandwich, cubed and topping a bowl of chili or veggie soup or smeared in a breakfast burrito.

Not only is a tasty fruit, it has a bunch of health benefits!

  • Avocados contribute good fats to one’s diet, providing 3 grams monounsaturated fat and 0.5 polyunsaturated grams fat per 1-oz. serving.
  • An ounce of avocado contains 81 micrograms of lutein. Lutein has been shown to be concentrated in the macula of the eye, and research suggests that it may help maintain healthy eyesight as we age.
  • Avocados can be a satisfying addition to a calorie-reduced diet, when they are eaten in lieu of other fats.
  • Avocados are a nutrient-dense fruit and a source of good fats—both monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. One-fifth of a medium avocado (1 oz) has 50 calories and nearly 20 vitamins and minerals.

For more healthy facts, recipes and tips on adding avocados into your diet, visit http://www.avocadocentral.com/.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

You Have Time for This Workout

I don’t buy the “I don’t have time to workout” argument.  Give me a few minutes with anyone’s calendar and I will find you 10-20 minutes a day that can be spent being active.  Whether you want to or not, is entirely up to you but I PROMISE you have the time.

With that said, I’m going to give you a 12 Minute “No Excuses”  workout that will hit your major muscle groups, get your heart rate up and doesn’t involve leaving your house, putting on shoes or even changing out of your pj’s.

Here we go.

• Spiderman Cross Climbers – 10 repetitions
• Prisoner Squats – 10 repetitions
• Pushups – 10 repetitions
• Jumping Jacks – 10 repetitions
• Plank – 30 seconds

Repeat this circuit for 12 minutes w no rest in between exercises

Click here for your 12 Minute No Excuses Workout to see how to do the exercises.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

And that, boys and girls, is how to set a goal!

I was having a quick chat this morning with a gal who attends my 5:30am boot-camp class to follow up on an email she sent me.  In the email she complimented a workout I had given (and who doesn’t love to hear that?), shared that she was able to do a full set of pushups without being on her knees (that is, in my opinion, a HUGE deal) and told me that she had set a personal goal of coming to a certain number of boot-camp classes and had just surpassed 18 straight classes.

Now this is goal setting at its finest!

Many people set vague goals; they want to “get healthy”, “eat better”, “lose some weight”, “eat more fruits and veggies”, “eat less junk food”.  Do you see a trend?  These goals, while good in theory, are vague, without specifics and without a concrete time line.

I think the best goals are ones where you decide this is what you are going to do (ie:  come to x number of classes in a row, run 4 days a week, or eat 7 servings of fruits and veggies each day) and then do it.

It takes away any waffling or indecision.

  • You don’t think about whether you are going to class, you are going to class because you set a goal.
  • You eat a salad instead of the fries because your goal is to eat that darned produce.
  • You run Tue, Thur, Sat and Sun because those are the days you set as your goal.

You.  Just.  Do. It.

So when you want to set a goal,  make it specific. Make it non-negotiable.  Then.  Do.  It.

Let me know if you need help staying accountable or need that extra kick in the tail!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

PS: To my goal-setting boot-camp pal, way to go!  I’m proud of your accomplishment so far!

 

Back Aid

If you spend time on a computer either working, checking email, blogging, or even just a few minutes (hours) playing Farmville while the kiddies play Legos, you may experience some pain or soreness in your upper back, shoulder, neck or wrists.  Not corrected, these aches and pains can lead to long-term problems.
Here are some tips to counter the effects of too much tech time.

1.  Take a 5 minute break every 30-60 minutes.  Stand, stretch, walk to another office or just roam around the house.  Another tip is to stand up every time you make or take a phone.

2.  Use a wrist support so your wrists can rest as you type.

3.  Lower or raise your computer monitor so that it’s at eye level.  I have my monitor at home on top of a big book and my office laptop sits on a ream of paper.

4.  Make sure your chair is supportive.  Your feet should be able to rest flat on the floor, your lower back should be supported and you should not be leaning over or reaching up to your desk.  If you’re working at your kitchen table in a straight-backed chair, get to Staples ASAP.

5.  Exercise regularly and focus on building your core strength.

6.  Take some time to learn some upper body stretches that will help stretch your chest muscles.  Many people have horrible posture at their desks, and sit hunched over with their shoulders rounded.  This causes your chest muscles to shorten which causes you to hunch over more.

Take care of your back and your back will take care of you!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Checking under the hood

Last month was my 47th birthday.  Yay me!  And while many people celebrate a birthday in all sorts of manners, my goal for the month was to get all of my necessary check-ups done including a blood test.

For the past 6 months I have done an overhaul on my eating habits.  Smaller portions, smarter snacking, etc.  And since I hadn’t had a blood workup done in about a decade I was curious to see what the numbers would reveal.

So I fasted for the 12 hours as directed by my doctor and rolled in to the blood testing  center about 3 minutes after they opened at 8:00am.  Got a few vials of blood taken and I was out the door and shoving breakfast in my face within a few minutes.  (Have I mentioned how I hate to be hungry?)

The next day I got my results back and was pleased.  All within healthy ranges and I get a bonus gold star for my low triglycerides, LDL cholesterol (the bad kind) and high HDL cholesterol (the good kind).

There is diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease in my immediate family so having some evidence that my choices are having a positive impact on my health is a good thing.

I’d like to encourage you all to take a few minutes and make the necessary appointments to check on your health.  A mammogram, a check up with the OB, and of course making sure you are getting your blood tested to catch treatable things such as high cholesterol, etc.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂