Saturday, April 30, 2011

A whole lotta nothin

Happy Saturday!!!

I didn't sleep well last night... thought that is nothing new for me. I don't know what it is but I just very rarely get a good night sleep anymore. I am exhausted everyday... and I hit the sack early because of it but come 3 am I am AWAKE. It is making me crazy. Anyway, got out of bed at 7 this morning, not really in any mood to do anything at all but I forced myself to get ready and go to the gym. I am glad I did. I do feel better when I go. As I sit here, the snow is falling down. Yes, snow. Oh how I wish that spring would come. There is rumor that next week will be gorgeous and getting warmer each day but I honestly don't believe it. I think I have a case of the winter blues. I need some sunshine in my life!

I have nothing profound to talk about, not a lot going on around here. I did finally try baking some black bean brownies... and I have to admit I was not impressed. I could totally taste the beans and quite frankly it grossed me out. I gagged. I mean... gagged, LOL!

Next week is my 11 year Anniversary. The crappy thing is my husband will be working, basking on the beach in Puerto Rico all week and I will be here in the snow. insert pity party. I know, it is ridiculous. And so unfair.

Well today marks 7 weeks out from my comp! Holy cow, time is flying by. I feel like I am definitely seeing improvements in my body but I realize that I still have A LOT of work to do! Time to bump it up a few cazillion notches. Wishing those who are competing today good luck! Can't wait to hear how you all do! Whoop Whoop!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Invisible Mother

The Invisible Mother
It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, 'Can't you see I'm on the phone?'
Obviously not; no one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I'm invisible. The invisible Mom. Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more! Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this??
Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, 'What time is it?' I'm a satellite guide to answer, 'What number is the Disney Channel?' I'm a car to order, 'Right around 5:30, please.'
Some days I'm a maid; 'Where's my other sock?, Where's my phone?, What's for dinner?'
I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history, music and literature -but now, they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going, she's going, she's gone!
One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England . She had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when she turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, 'I brought you this.' It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe . I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: 'With admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees.
In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:
1) No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of their names.
2) These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.
3) They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.
4) The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.
A story of legend in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, 'Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof, No one will ever see it And the workman replied, 'Because God sees.'
I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was Almost as if I heard God whispering to me, 'I see you. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does.
No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, no Cub Scout meeting, no last minute errand is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become.
I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.
When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friend he's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, 'My Mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for 3 hours and presses all the linens for the table.' That would mean I'd built a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, he'd say, 'You're gonna love it there...'
As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible mothers.

Share this with all the Invisible Moms you know... I just did.

My niece posted this on her blog a week or so ago and it made me laugh, and cry and laugh and cry. It is so hard trying to be that person to everyone in your life. The good mother, good wife, good friend and at the same time taking care of yourself. I just thought it was something that most of us can relate to and I had to repost it!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Ummm.... YES! I am absolutely 100% obsessed with protein shakes. I even have my two kids getting almost as obsessed as I am. It all started with the frozen hot chocolate protein shake. Then I made a banana cheesecake shake using sugar free, fat free JELLO cheesecake and 1/2 of a banana. Well... I got to thinking about how good it would be to add some cheesecake mix into the frozen hot chocolate. BLISS. Absolute bliss. I look forward to that nightly shake. My kids do too, they come running for a little of their own the second the blender starts.

The past few days have been really hectic. I can't even tell you why other than I am pretty exhausted half of the time and feel like my day is over before it really ever begins. I don't feel like I have accomplished much. Ever feel that way? I don't like it one bit. Today I feel completely useless. I must be coming down with something. It all started yesterday with a headache that I couldn't get rid of. I went to bed with it and was up MULTIPLE times at night with it... well that and a scared child who swore she had worms in her bed. I decided to skip the 5:30 am class at the gym so I could get some sleep. I woke up feeling a little better, but as soon as I got to the gym around 9 and started doing legs the throbbing began. It was bad, I had to leave after a few exercises because it was making me nauseous. NOT GOOD when I am going to be on stage in a teeny tiny bikini in 8 weeks. I spent the day resting. I do feel a little better but don't want to push it. Anyway, enough of that. Here is what I have been feasting on lately!

Turkey Meatballs

1 lb extra lean ground turkey and 1 egg

seasonings of choice and a little (not too much) cheese

A couple spoonfuls of salsa

A handful of Oats instead of breadcrumbs

Form into balls and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes turning halfway

The finished product. YUM!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

What's weighing on your mind?

Yesterday I ran 5 miles with my neighbor. She is training for a marathon in May and yesterday was her "light" run so I joined her. I almost died. I am no runner. BUT.. I did it! Whoo hooo!

My morning started out no different than every other morning. I sometimes feel like I am stuck in a bad movie... groundhog day... my kids have been getting ready for school every week day for the past how many years yet EVERY day I literally have to tell them step by step what they need to do. Come eat breakfast. Go get dressed. Put your shoes and socks on. Brush your teeth. Brush your hair. Did you brush your teeth. Get your backpack. Where's your coat. Why aren't your shoes on yet. I sometimes just wish that they could take the initiative and do it without me having to tell them (a million times) everything you know? I guess maybe my carb deprived body wasn't in the mood today because it really got to me. I was ready to take it out at the gym!

Today was back and bi's at the gym. A scoop of No-Xplode and I was out the door. I started out with a fun fat burning cardio circuit for about 30 minutes and then headed down to the weight room. I fatigued my back until I could no longer do anything else. Its funny to me how our favorite muscles to work change over time. I used to love my leg days. LOVE THEM! Now... I HATE them! My favorite body part to work is probably my back because that is where I have seen the most improvements over the years. As far as I am concerned my legs can bite me. Ha! It is the first place I gain and the very VERY last place I lose so I have a very very deep hate relationship with them.

Lately there has been a lot of talk about scales. I have read a few bloggers ring in on the subject and it has been something that is weighing in on my own mind. What are your thoughts? I personally don't own one. I used to. Years ago. When I weighed next to nothing. It became an obsession for me. I weighed myself MULTIPLE times a day, and would panic every time it changed. It was sick. I was sick. I gave it up like a bad addiction and although I think for me that was the ONLY decision I wonder now if I were to have one if it would help me stay on track because I would know where I was at. Or would it do more harm than good? I just am not sure. Anyway, just something I have been thinking about.

Monday, April 18, 2011


Great workout this morning. I finally came up with a brilliant idea to do my light leg day (plyos etc) early in the week so that later in the week when I can't walk from my heavy day I have already done my light day. I don't know why it took me until now to come up with that ;) Anyway, today I did this fat burning circuit. It was nuts. I was sweating like a mad woman.

Choose up to 8 exercises and number them (I did 6, I will work up to 8)

1. Jump squat x 15
2. DB swings x 20
3. Pushups x 15
4. Squat row x 20
5. Mountain climbers x 80
6. DB squat curl x 15

Start at #1, next do #1 and #2, next do #1, #2, and #3 and continue until you have gone all the way through. It took me about 35-40 minutes to do this. I then went and did a really light high rep of leg extensions and curls. 4 x 20

Felt really good!

One of my favorite things to eat! I may or may not have already posted this at some point but I am going to do it again! I make a pan of this and eat it over the course of a few days because I can change it up and it never gets old.

1 package brown rice (I use the microwave in 90 seconds because I suck at making rice ;) )
chicken breasts (I usually use 2-3) cooked and cubed
salsa (low sodium) eyeball it!

that is the base of it, here are some things I add to change it up

black beans, corn, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, light cheese

Cook rice and chicken. Add to pan and top with salsa. Mix it up really good and add any extra's that you may want. Bake on 350 for 20-25 minutes, just until hot!

I eat this a few different ways. Sometimes inside a corn tortilla topped with a little bit of yogurt ranch dressing. Sometimes I just like it all by itself as a rice bowl. Sometimes I throw it on top of a large plate of salad, and sometimes (like last night) I turn my corn tortilla into chips by spraying with PAM and throwing them under my broiler. Oh and super yummy with a little avocado on top!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Late nights and sore muscles

Happy Sunday!

I have had a pretty busy weekend. My son started baseball so we spent Saturday morning at the ball park. I have to admit it made me feel young again. I grew up on the ball park. No, I didn't play but my 3 brothers did and man I loved watching them. My dad also played softball most of my childhood. It was fun to see my son out there on the field. After that, the kids and I drove out to my sisters house to do some "crafting" which mostly means that I sit and watch her work her magic. And then I come home with some pretty cute stuff :) She is incredible. So talented, she will just get an idea and whala... a masterpiece. We, or rather she made Easter baskets for our kids. They turned out darling. We ended up staying over until 11 pm talking and crafting and time sure flies when we are all having fun! Needless to say today was "sleep in" day. My kids didn't get up until 10:30. Eeks!

My workouts have been rough this week because I have been so freakishly sore from my leg and back and bi day this week. Honestly, legs was Tuesday and I am JUST NOW... as in TODAY able to go up and down my stairs without wincing in pain or screaming. SO... my two leg days this week... was one... but it was a good one :) I have tried out a couple of new recipes this week. I made some no bake protein bars to keep on hand for those "moments" using oats, fitnutz, almond milk, cocoa powder, truvia and some sugar free PB syrup. I also made myself a stuffed green pepper filled with ground turkey, salsa, and artichoke hearts. It was really good. Most of my meals this week have been the same old thing. Oats, ground turkey with mustard and a veg or brown rice with chicken and salsa.

I hope you all had a fantastic weekend... here's to a new week, with new goals and lots of progress!

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Too good not to rave about. I am not easily "blown away" by a lot of "healthy" recipes. I am not that starving... YET... however, if I don't share this with you, you will never understand how amazing my breakfast was this morning. It knocked my socks off and it all began last night. I was doing my usual thing... browsing blogs that I have come across, searching for new recipes to try just to change things up a bit and there it was. BANANA CHEESECAKE OATMEAL. I don't eat a lot of banana's. I am more of an orange person lately but I had some and thought anything that is supposed to taste like Cheesecake has got to be good right? A-MAZING! So since the recipe only called for 1/2 of a banana I also made myself a Banana Cheesecake Protein shake using the other half of it. DELISH.

Banana Cheesecake Protein shake
1/2 banana
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
ice (to your liking)
1/4 C cottage cheese or yogurt
1 Tbsp cheesecake pudding mix (sugar free, fat free)
blend it up and wha-la you have the yummiest creamiest "shake"

To see some pretty awesome tips and tricks and shake recipes visit Katie. She is amazing, and most of my shake ideas come from her recipes!!

Back to the oatmeal. I only used about half of it in my oatmeal. I didn't mix it in, I just threw it on top and had a little with each spoonful. I then ate the rest of it after the gym for a quick snack. So good. Too good. What are you waiting for? Go try it!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Oh turkey.....

What a day! I took today as my day off from the gym because we had so much going on. I had two doctor appointments this morning, had to be home for my furniture delivery, and my son had baseball tryouts. Today was business as usual with my meals. Oatmeal, chicken breast on a lite flatbread for lunch (only 8g carbs!), an orange, a piece of low carb sweet bread made using this recipe from April (clicking on her name will take you to the recipe)! I threw a piece in under my broiler so it would toast and used some spray butter on it. Pretty tasty! Dinner, I had some ground turkey with some chipolte mustard and Brussels sprouts. Don't be jealous. :) Something I learned about ground turkey is if you throw an egg white in and mash it all up before you cook it, it comes out SUPER moist and not dry at all. YUM.

I can barely walk today. Just have to throw that out there. My workout yesterday has left me in some serious pain. I honestly have to slide down the stairs... only problem is I can't slide up them. Day 2 is the worst... I am in a world of trouble tomorrow. YIKES! After checking out a few blogs I have some YUMMY recipes that I can't wait to try out to change things up a bit. I might even get a picture or two up here!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Today has been an exhausting day. I planned to do sprints this morning... but it was raining and I then realized that I was training with my trainer today and we would likely be doing legs. I haven't done legs with her before but to say the least... I was TERRIFIED. So... bagged the sprints, saved my energy for the gym. I started my day off with 1/3 C of Oatmeal and one of my bran muffins (recipe posted yesterday). I got to the gym and did a 10 minute warm up. I started the walk down the plank... ehhh... to meet my trainer. The workout was INSANE. All I was thinking to myself the whole time was "B**** IS CRAZY". Ha! Legs were J-E-L-L-O! Kind of wishing I didn't have 3 sets of stairs to go up and down because the first time I tried going down today I almost went DOWN. In fact I am pretty sure that at one point in my workout I actually resembled this:

For lunch I had chicken with artichoke hearts and red peppers. It was goooood!!!! Somewhere in my day I had an orange, and maybe another bran muffin (shhhh) and for dinner had tilapia with artichoke hearts and red peppers. Can you tell what I have been craving today?

I will end my day as I always do with the best protein shake on the planet found here I swear it is like heaven on earth (tastes like a Wendy's frosty) and even though it makes my teeth chatter and colder than you could even imagine I just have to have it!

I want to know your favorite recipes for contest prep. I need some new ideas. Please share!!!!!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Here we go again!!!!

My plans to do another show in California came to a screeching halt when my life turned upside down and inside out. I am now living in Utah... my husband took a new position with his company. We have purchased our FIRST house... and we are really just trying to adjust to being back "home". We haven't lived here our entire 11 years of marriage so it has its challenges. I miss my friends and my life in Temecula so SO much, but I am very blessed with some pretty amazing friends here. It will be okay.

I also have decided to compete again. I will however NOT be doing Figure this time around. That was a really hard decision for me to make. I have SO much respect for Figure competitors... so much respect for the sport and the women I have met along the way. It just isn't for me. I really struggled with the weight gain. I came into this sport weighing 110 pounds.... and came out of it weighing.... oh come on you didn't really think I was going to tell you did you??? I came out weighing A LOT MORE THAN I DID GOING IN. 'Nuff said. I don't like the extra weight on me. I don't feel good with it. And the harsh reality that I was going to have to put on even more just to compete with this industry (of course by put on more weight I am talking muscle) was like a big reality check. So for that reason alone (my sanity) I am focusing on losing a bit of the weight I have gained and competing in the Bikini division. I am about 9 1/2 weeks out. I have been really dialing in on my diet... and workouts are getting pretty intense. A lot of cardio (yay) and some peace of mind knowing that in a short 9 weeks I will hopefully be looking a whole better in a bikini. Sigh.

I have a recipe for you all! I made these today. They turned out pretty good, will taste great with Peanut butter, jam or honey. I plan to freeze them and use them for when I just really need a "treat".

Bran Muffins

1C Oat Flour
3/4 C Wheat Bran
1/4 C Ground flax (you can omit if you like)
1/4 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
dash cinnamon
1/4 C sugar free honey (or you could use brown sugar)
1/4 C Stevia (for baking) omit if you use brown sugar
1 C Nonfat Greek Yogurt
1 egg (beaten)
Applesauce (I didn't measure this... but would assume it was around 3 Tbsp)
1/4 C Almond Breeze (ish... see how dry your "batter" is)

Preheat oven to 350. Mix wet ingredients add dry ingredients. Batter will be thick... not runny like most muffins or cakes. Put into lined cupcake pan. Bake for 20 minutes.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 muffins

Amount per Serving

Calories 89
Calories from Fat 17.9

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 1.99g
Saturated Fat 0.13g
Cholesterol 17.92mg
Sodium 16.39mg
Total Carbohydrate 14.8g
Dietary Fiber 3.33g
Sugars 1.18g
Protein 3.32g

Est. Percent of Calories from:


* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calories needs.