Friday, 28 December 2012

Pure Laziness

Maybe not pure laziness, but pretty damn lazy.  That's how I feel.

My dad and Gregers... it wasn't too long after this picture that my dad declared he was drunk and going to bed.
I actually booked myself off for the holidays for a whole week and a half and it's hard to believe so much of it is already over!  I spent the first weekend prepping for my parents to arrive and then when they did there was a lot of yummy cooking happening that I didn't take pictures of (whoops).  We had Greg's now infamous ribbies, steak, banana bread french toast, ham, brussel sprouts, and lots of bacon.  It was glorious. 

Even if you aren't paleo or hate paleo, you really need to make this banana bread. 
But not.  I'm not sure if it was the sheer amount I ate, or the chocolate chips in my banana bread that did me in, or maybe the alcohol, but I've spent the last few days with an angry stomach.  I was really hoping that I would avoid the Franklin/Hyland stomach issues but it appears I haven't.  Which is really sad.  Dairy and gluten make my stomach really angry and other things seem to upset it on a whim.  It's really frustrating. 

Local cider for the win!

Then there was the fact that Greg and I went out for our belated anniversary dinner at Fabbrica and I couldn't resist a piece of bread... or the tiramisu.  You can bet I felt like ass yesterday after not having gluten for close to 4 months. 

I also spent most of yesterday in my pajamas not moving off the couch.  I wasn't going to workout but I realized that there was  probably going to be a 4 day gap between workouts because of circumstances so I should probably get off my butt.  I finally made it off the couch for the 5pm workout.  It was sweaty and disgusting but so worth it.

It was also chilly since Toronto finally decided to have some snow.
Alright... it's almost 11 and I'm going to try to aim for the noon class today... guess I should probably put some workout clothes on or something.

Happy Holidays!  Nothing like flying a helicopter inside!

Sunday, 23 December 2012

CrossFit: 6 weeks in

Yes, it's Sunday, two days before Christmas, and I'm blogging.

It's Sunday morning, I'm bored, and I'm avoiding doing the cleaning I need to do before my parents arrive... or the baking... shhhhhh.   And I may be watching Home Alone.

Anyways...

Coming to you is another Crossfit post. 

The reason I think I love Crossfit isn't because I've just drank the kool-aid.  I did have a little sip and I am now looking for perfect minimal shoes but yeah, I also plan on running again soon and biking and all that jazz.

I like Crossfit because I get a group feel while lifting and having someone push me and teach me (even when I roll my eyes when they say to add more weight) means I'm making gains so quickly it astounds me.

When Amy mentioned how she would never be able to box jump, I realized I hadn't done them in awhile.  And my last time was a bit of a disaster.  Luckily there wasn't any skin broken on my shins, but my pride was frustrated.

Saturday was day 4/4 for me which means no Metcon!  I chipped away at my little workout knowing that the last couple things I had to do were probably going to be frustrating: box jumps and double unders.

The double unders were NOT a success today.  The coach laughed at me because I definitely slammed the rope down a few times after whipping my forearms.

The box jumps though?  Awesome.

1.  The last time I was struggling to get onto the 12 inch box which has a 1 inch lift on it.... I nailed it first set.
2.  Okay, so I added a plate.
3.  And then I added a higher plate
4.  And then I added both and I still may have been able to do a bit more!

I'm very much excited for what the new year brings!  My goal?  A 20 inch box jump!



Thursday, 20 December 2012

1 Month Check-In

I am SO HAPPY.  I can't believe it.  I really can't.  Weighing myself etc never ends well.  It usually ends up with me in a corner crying and declaring I need wine, STAT.

So you can imagine that I may not have gone into today all that excited.  I thought I had seen changes... but that usually didn't really mean much.

BUT today, today there were changes.

Tired Kelly is tired.

I lost 2lbs which I was happy with.  It put me in the 160s for the first time in over a year. 

I was given a goal of 2-3% body fat loss and I nailed it.  I ended up losing 2.8%.   The biggest change for me was in my stomach which is my problem area and the place I have always hated.  My stomach caliper measurement went down by 25%.  That is just huge!

My goal is to get through the next 2 weeks without eating and drinking my face off and then kill January!

I can see an end point.... only 5-6% body fat to go to get into my first goal.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

She needs her own post...

Ummm posting this here because it cracks me up.  And because a couple of people on instagram should probably watch the craziness of my kitten....

video

Tuesday is my blogging day...

I always get the urge to blog on Tuesdays.  I think it's because I get my workout done early and then don't have to be at work until noon.  Then I realize I haven't blogged in a week so I probably should get on that.

This week has been good.  I'm finally starting to notice the effects of paleo/primal in terms of cravings.   I had to go to a Christmas party over the weekend, and for once I didn't want to stuff my face with cheese and desserts.  But believe me that cheese did look kinda tasty.   I also went back for seconds of the salad.  Who goes back for more salad?  Gosh.  I did however have some wine, which has been my one weakness through this entire thing.  Okay and the dark chocolate peanut butter in my cupboard.  My plan is to get through this month, and then completely cut out the wine for a month just for kicks. 

Other stuff that happened this week:  I did my first attempt at a Crossfit Lady, Fran, and came up not too bad considering.   Though I couldn't Rx the weight and I still need pull-up bands but that's okay!  I'm getting there.



I'm not sure if I see more muscle there or if I'm just better at flexing.
 Thursday is my first checkpoint with Crossfit and I'm nervous.  Did giving 95% result in a decent amount of change?  It's so hard to see it on yourself which is why I take a million pictures of myself.  Pshhht.  Okay, I'm just vain.

Alright, I better get myself together... time to drink some tea and get ready for my workday.  4 more days til vacation!!
 



Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Random Stuff

I sat here for awhile trying to figure out what I wanted to write about today.  I don't have a clear plan.  Meh.  Let's see what happens.

Crossfit this morning was brutal and awesome all at the same time.  I went up by 15lbs on my squat and my form seems to be improving every time I try which is awesome.  I also feel a lot more confident with chin ups and pull ups.  With chin ups in my workout out, and man makers (eff me those things are tough!), toes to bar (I currently do knees to chest), and skipping as the WOD, my hands are toast.  They're starting to look about as rough as they did while I was working on the canal:


I made fish sticks last night for dinner and they were rockin'!  I'm trying to get more fish in my diet without just going out for sushi every other night.  I tried to make a butternut squash hash too but it kind of failed and I've also decided that I really don't love squash.  I'm still working on my feelings about the funky smelling vegetable.
Pecan crusted haddock. Mmm mmm good.  


Speaking of going out.  Greg and I went out for an anniversary breakfast this morning.  It's kind of frustrating having to modify meals so much when you go out, and I can only ask for so much so the hash browns showed up on my plate and I had a hard time not picking at them.  Okay.... I had a few.... 

Okay, last thoughts for today:

 My cat's are adorable.

Monkeys dressed in coats at Ikea are freakin' hilarious. 






Thursday, 6 December 2012

What Crossfit is Teaching Me.

1.  I am stronger than I think I am.  

I admit, I probably wasn't lifting as heavy as I could have been while doing the Live Fit Program.   Actually, I know I wasn't now.   Today, I PRed my deadlift at 135lbs.   Nothing crazy, but considering I ONLY did Romanian deadlifts prior, and even that was only around the 60lb mark, I'm stoked.  My first goal is 170lbs (or a body weight deadlift) and I'm getting so close!  And if I have lost weight I'll be even closer.  Awesome!!  

2.  I am way more competitive than I thought I was.

I am so competitive in other areas of my life, but fitness has never been something I considered something I would ever excel at, and therefore, there was no reason to be competitive with someone.  Doing WODs, I push myself harder when there's someone beside me and I constantly want to improve and be better than myself and to catch up to the pack.

3.  I am athletic.

This thought was partly prompted by Crossfit and partly by a client who asked me what got me into my profession and if I played any sports.  I always say no, but.   My but is that I've done a duathlon, I've ran races, and I workout a lot.  And now I say I do Crossfit.  He was astounded that I do all that and said it was way harder than what he did (baseball) and that it was really hardcore.  I have NEVER considered myself an athlete or athletic.  Especially after flailing through gym class and multiple trials at sports as a kid.  It's really hard to consider myself an athlete.  But I AM.  I need to stop seeing the grade 9 girl who finished the 1 mile run last and in like 15 minutes.  That's not me anymore.


It really is time to stop beating myself up and start building myself up.  Back to it tomorrow or Saturday, depending on how sore I am from the insanity today!

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Learning to like...


1.  Black coffee.   Seriously?  Who knew black coffee could actually taste good?  I'm that person in your Starbucks who can never walk in there and just order coffee.  It's usually some form of crazy ass drink with 3-4 changes to it.  I'm sorry.  And I'm sorry to anyone who asks me if I want anything from Starbucks if they're going.  Anyways, the point of this ramble is that black coffee was never something I thought I could do.   On this whole Paleo challenge thing, one of the suggestions was to drink your coffee black, and ya know what?  It's actually pretty good!  Last night I even got a decaf americano.  Progress!

(Post-Crossfit hair)

2.  Me.  I took a picture of myself on the way to Peterborough on Saturday and I can tell you everything I hate about it:  I'm pale.  I'm tired.  I look chubby, etc.  But you know what?  My hair looks killer.  I love my makeup.  And I love that my eyes have gotten greener.  And I really look pretty good.  It's so hard to stop negative self-talk, but the only way to combat it is with positives.




3.  Spaghetti Squash/Substitute Carbs.  Let's talk about this.  Zucchini is not really a lasagna noodle, and no matter what anyone tells you, spaghetti squash does not replace fresh homemade pasta.  But sometimes it kind of tastes good.  And sometimes it's actually not so bad in a dish.  Promise!  Funny story about this one.

 As I was transferring pictures to use in this entry, I came across my screen cap for the recipe.  Last night I spent a half hour freaking that paleomg.com was down I couldn't see the ingredient list (can you tell I'm a baker by nature?  I can't deal without exact measurements),  and the damn ingredients were on my phone the entire time!

3b.  Side note:  changing up my cooking habits made me finally pull out my fancy Le Crueset cookware that I usually hate getting down because it's so heavy.

4.  Okay, we already know I love these two, but Greg wants me to post about our cats.  So here are our cats spooning.  Cutest thing ever.  How can you not like cats?  Also, we locked Pip in a closet for 24hrs this weekend.  Whoops.










Friday, 30 November 2012

Ch-ch-ch-changes

Today's workout made me face fears.  I'm comfortable lifting things up and putting them down.

I'm not comfortable with anything that involves my body weight.

I suck at boy push ups.  I can't do a pull up/chin up to save my life.  And the idea of lifting my body weight up to get up onto something freaks me the eff out.  I blame being the kid who could never actually get up on the stage at school by jumping up and turning around. 

Today's workout had rope climbs, moves with the rings, and l-sits which were supposed to be skin the cats which looks like this:
 Actually, it was even worse because there was supposed to be a pike thing at the top too.  Ughhhhh.

Stuff was going okay.  Kinda.  Okay, I had a million variations until I got to the last two moves.


About that.  I almost landed on my face a few times with the front leaning and only managed to squeak out 5-10 seconds at a time.

The support hold?  I stared at it for 5 minutes before I even tried.   I ended up needing support of a resistance band and at best I could hold for about 20seconds.  It was a mess.

BUT I did things I never in the world thought I would even try to do.

I may have sucked but it was a still a step forward. 

I leave you with this goodie.  It cracks me up every time I see it!


Wednesday, 28 November 2012

The Truth

There are many reason why I haven't blogged in almost a month, and there are just as many for why my blog posts when down exponentially over the last couple months.

I wasn't feeling it partly because the 'Operation Get Fit' wasn't showing any progress.  I was stalled and very much reverting back to some old habits.  Think wine, nachos just because I went to the gym, and too much of healthy 'treats'.

I definitely wasn't getting bigger, but I wasn't getting stronger or smaller either.

Then there was that disastrous doctor's appointment where I got to hear about my weight again.

With all that weighing on me, yes weighing on me, I finally kicked myself in the ass and joined a Crossfit Box.  Part of the reason I dipped out of posting was because I didn't want to become a crazy obsessive Crossfit blogger.  But realistically, it was the right choice for me:  a girl who liked weights but had a hard time pushing myself.

Up at 6:30am to workout???
 I'm almost a month into it, and loving it.   The workouts are hard and intense and I'm loving it.  Working my way up to less resistance pull-ups, deadlifting #115, benching #55, while not sounding like crazy accomplishments, they are for me.

I also am working with their awesome nutrition expert Summer, and working my way through a strict paleo-esque diet up until the holidays.   It's been a little bit of a battle but I'd say 1 week in, I'm averaging 95% and finally reading labels.  I've got another 3 weeks to go, so we'll see what happens.  She even did the whole skip caliper body fat % thing.  The good news is, it's not as bad as I thought.  The bad, it's definitely in the obese range.  Yup, Kelly, the exercise junkie is still considered obese.

With that, I'll try to be back.  I'll post some awesome things I've been making lately in my kitchen.  I'll remember that this blog is for me.


Random pictures of stuff I should have blogged about but didn't:

27th birthday dinner with one of the best Food Network chefs!
Typical few days of strength at Crossfit
Finally got my shipment of Vermont PB (in limited quantities until challenge is over)

Yum yum Paleo dinner!
Amazing paleo pumpkin french toast!

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Public Service Announcement

I can barely walk today.

Or get out of a chair.

Or up the stairs.


I love this feeling.

Monday, 5 November 2012

Drinking Kool-Aid

I am about to join a cult. 

A cult that makes me roll my eyes a little, but it took some time to come to this decision, and I took a long time to think about if this cult was the right one for me.

Yes, I'm joining a Crossfit gym.

The horror.

My reasoning?   Gym classes don't motivate me any more.  Pump doesn't work for me.  I love spin but I'll find a way to bring it back (or I may get a trainer for my bike).   I love lifting weights but I feel like I'm kind of stuck and I know I can't go farther without someone pushing me and watching my form.  And I miss having a gym partner to push me.

I did two things in the last couple days, I tried kickboxing, which I loved, and this morning I went for my consult/trial for the Crossfit gym by my apartment.

I adored boxing and would have gone back, if it wasn't for the fact that Crossfit is a better fit.

I didn't realize that I would be doing a workout this morning, but luckily I was dressed properly.

Today, we spent a little bit of time doing movement assessments and then worked on my squat.  I was pleasantly surprised that I managed to do 1x5 full squats beyond parallel with 45lbs.  It's not a ton of weight but I've always been scared to go beyond 90 without anyone around.

Todays WOD was longggggg.  At 18 minutes, it's on the longer side of WODs (or as this gym calls them, Metcons.

3 sets of 4 minutes as many rounds as possible of 15 kettlebells and 10 ball slams with 3 minutes rests.

I managed to get through all 3 sets but there was a lot of sweating going on and the last set was pathetic.

I'm going back Thursday for my personal training/total assessment so we'll see how this goes.

I'm really excited! 

Don't worry, I won't make you drink the kool-aid!

Friday, 2 November 2012

When even the ones who know better don't

I know better.  I really really know better.

Last week I did a particularly rough lower body workout and felt on top of the world.

The next day I did my favourite spin class.

Unfortunately, 5 minutes in I could barely move the pedals.   My legs were on fire, but I figured that it would pass as soon as I warmed up.  But it didn't.

I'm now regulated to sitting on my ass for the last week waiting for my back to heal.  I'm stretching as much as I can and getting acupuncture, but it's taking it's sweet time.

I wish I could say I was eating clean and it would all be okay, but I kinda fell off the wagon with a few too many hallowe'en treats and eating out a bit too much.

Tomorrow is another day though.  Hoping to try out kickboxing tomorrow and then I have something big (possibly) on the horizon. 

Thursday, 1 November 2012

November is Here!

Eeeek!  November has finally arrived!   I'm excited because it means two things:   Snow should be arriving soon (hopefully) and in 16 days it will be my birthday!

With the arrival of November, I'm starting to form some new goals.   Basically, I'm a bit stuck and frustrated with my 'progress' but I'm also debating whether I really want to give up even more just to be smaller. 

This week, I went to my doctor's for my physical, and while it wasn't my worst doctor experience, it was still frustrating as hell.  She told me my weight (which was just such a bad thing, the last few days has been a bit of a rollercoaster) and gave me the spiel about my BMI being high and how I should count calories and blah blah blah.  Apparently, I'm the exact same weight as I was 6-8 months ago.  I really could go on and on about how doctor's take that number, and BMI (WHICH WE ALL KNOW ISN'T  a good measure) and don't focus on my perfect blood pressure or blood work.  I am healthy when you look at that.  Good blood sugars, good cholesterol, good thyroid, etc.  Sigh.  My other favourite comment had to be "Oh, beautiful tattoos, do you want to be checked for HIV?".

Now that the rant is over.  What are my goals?

1.  Blog 3-5 times per week.  Half the time I don't think I have anything interesting to say, but I have to remember this blog is for me, not everyone else in the world.

2. Naked run 3 times per week.  No, I don't mean run naked.  I mean outside, without gadgets, and just going for as long as I think I can.  No more numbers.*

3. Stretching!  Remember to stretch.  I love stretching, but I felt like I didn't have time for it over the last month or so.  That way of thinking lead to a very angry back.

4.  Monitor my water intake.  Try for at least 4 water bottles at work, and another 4 glasses while at home.

5.  Decrease the wine.   One glass, 3 times per week. 

*I know if you read this blog, you probably think I should give up on running already, but I really want to fall back in love with it, and I fully intend to do another duathlon

Okay guys, I think that's all.  Hopefully I can make November and December my best months!

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

We All Know What Happens When We Assume...

This rant is brought to by making an ass out of you and me.


After having a good rant on this dude changes his web name too much blog, I got to experience a bit of first hand assuming that drove me so bonkers last night.

One thing that took me a really long time to understand is to stop judging people at the gym.  Everyone has their own goals in their head and you're best to just leave them alone and well 'do you'.

Granted, I do silently judge when something looks so wrong I'm 99% sure I'm going to see them in my clinic later, but I keep it to myself and go about my thing.

What I haven't really talked about on this blog is that I'm halfway through Jamie Eason's Live Fit.

I love it, but I'm saving a review for later.

To begin with, I was pretty pumped to walk in to my gym to find the squat rack empty.  Silently I did a little whoop in my head and BEE LINED it over.   My first exercise was a narrow stance squat, something I've never done before.  I was playing around with which muscles I was using and going slow with just the bar.  I thought I was doing okay when a fellow gym goer caught my attention.  I removed my earbuds thinking he would ask me how many sets I had left.

WRONG.

He proceeded to tell me that I should do a wider stance and interrupted my workout for a good 5 minutes after I explained that I was trying to do narrow stance.  This convo included how I was going to wreck my back and knees.  NO SHIT.  That's why I'm low weight and trying to get it right.

20 minutes later I started double walking lunges.  Step-down-up-down-step.  He catches me at the end of a set and the exchange goes like this:

Guy:  Double Lunges eh?  Pretty tough.

Me: Yeah, my legs are dead after that set.

Guy:  You know you don't have to kill yourself

Me:  Meh, I know my body pretty well, I'll go down in weight if I need to.

Guy:  You know, bodybuilding.com has some pretty tough programs.  There's this other site called T-----nation----dot---com that has some good programs.  Not so hard.

Me:  Yeah, I know that site. *starting to fume*

Guy: So what's your name.

Me: Kelly.

Guy: I'm *blahblahblahnolongerlisteningblahblahblah*

Me: Cool.  Have a good workout.

I wish I could have accurately described how small he made me feel.  I avoided going near him the rest of my workout. 

What I'm assuming:  He thought I didn't look 'fit' enough to be doing what I was doing.  Just because I'm 5'1" and somewhere around the 160 mark does NOT mean I'm out of shape or inept at lifting weights.  Just because I haven't quite got the form down, doesn't mean I don't know what I'm doing. 

The worst part:  I turn my physio brain off when I walk out the door of my work.  I had NO capacity to say something back to him.


I just hope I don't have to see him at the gym again.







Wednesday, 17 October 2012

The Number Game

I had a thought yesterday. 

Actually, I surprisingly have many thoughts on a regular basis but not every one of them is sane. 

My thought was this:  I've spent a majority of my 26 years focused on numbers.  My pant size.  The number on the scale.  How many points/calories I've ate.  How many times did I go to the gym that week. 

I've done away with two of these numbers.  I haven't set foot on a scale in over two months.  It has been the most freeing experience of my life.  Especially because I take pictures of my progress every month or so.  I don't have shitty days because I weighed myself.  I don't beat myself up over not losing from one week to the next.  Oh I pigged out on sushi and have sodium bloat?  I don't react twice as bad since I don't see the number momentarily go up.

I've also stopped counting calories.  I try to fit too much crap into my day if I do.  Instead, I give my body what it wants (even if it means a burger and fries or chocolate).  I don't care about calories.  I care about maxing my protein which seems to mean I eat less.

I have one more to give up this week. 

My pant size. 

I'm not sure what I started out as prior to this journey.   I know I had a pair of size 12 jeggings that were pretty snug and some stretchy lulus.  But that's about the extent of what I wore.

I now seem to be about an 11/12. 

But really.  What does it matter?

As long as I'm healthy, happy, and seeing strength gains and body composition gains, I don't need to worry about fitting into a size 8.  It's been my goal for so long to get back to an 8.  Today, I'm letting it go.  I may get back there one day or I may not.

I thought about why I wanted an 8 sooooo bad.  It's all I've wanted for 2 years.  I realized it's because it's not a "plus size" number.  Sure, I guess a 12 is considered the plus size, but a 10 is still double digits.  In my head, I needed to shun that number.  *please note I think all women are beautiful no matter what their size.  It was something I had built in my head.*

You know what?  I don't care anymore.

I'm happy with my progress.  


Numbers are just numbers.  They can't hurt me.


Monday, 15 October 2012

I Sweat Rainbows

This weekend, I got to participate in something really awesome:  The Colo(u)r Run!!  

There was a moment at 3:12pm while we were stuck in traffic on the 401 headed to Montreal when I really really really wanted to just stay in Toronto.  I didn't want to race.  And then I thought about it.  This 'race' was supposedly the happiest run on the planet.  What was I worried about.

6 hours later... we were in Montreal and having dinner.  

Because we couldn't leave until Friday night, we had to pick up race packages Saturday morning.  I woke up at an ungodly hour to see that it was still dark out and it was -2 degrees.  I was not prepared for negative temps.


 But I laced up my pink Sauconys and pulled on my zebra socks, and we headed out the door.


Because we got there at 7:30am (my irrational fear of being late combined with the fact that there was a ton of warnings about how busy it would be) we got our gear super quickly and had a 1.5 hours to try to stay warm.
Clean... not for long.
 I stole Greg's purple package and shoved it in my bra.  Sports bras are very handy I tell ya.


How to tell you're not at a 'serious race': people were milling about in the Color Store/Race Pack pickup area well after 9am, the official race start.  I couldn't find the damn start line until 9:15.  AND NO ONE WAS PANICKED ABOUT IT.

Beautiful Montreal, the white dots are actually runners on the other side.  You can also see some people waiting to start just sitting on the docks.



The run itself was amazing.  I ran most of it fairly fast (I think) and appreciated the bottleneck at the colour zones as a bit of a rest period.  The best part?  No one really cared about times and the stops etc.  Barely anyone had headphones.  I saw a ton of people skipping while doing it.  My favourite parts were watching people roll in the colour and throw it all over themselves.  

They weren't lying when they said it was the happiest run on the planet.  I get it now.


 After a long drive home, I decided to do a little celebrating with my favourite brewery's awesome pumpkin beer, Weiss O'Lantern.


If there's a Colour Run in your area I so, so, so recommend it.  I can't tell you how much fun it was.  And if you do do it, enjoy the moment.  Greg and I didn't run together, but I wish we had and had gotten even more colourful.  

It's okay though.  There's always next year.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Dabbling in Healthy Desserts


Wishing I had grabbed my SLR when I took the spring form pan off this amazingness, because this picture does NOT do it justice.  This my friends, is PEANUT BUTTER PIE.

Raw, gluten free, and pretty much healthy for you. 

Mine didn't turn out perfect because the instructions were a bit vague but it's definitely a must try again!

Chocolate Fudge Crust
  • 1 Cup Raw Peanuts
  • 1 Cup Raw Slivered Almonds
  • 1 Cup Pitted Dates
  • 4 Tbsp Cocoa
  • 1/4 Cup Water
Peanut Butter Filling
  • 1 Cup Pumpkin Puree
  • 1/2 Cup Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1/3 Cup Pitted Dates
  • 3 Packets Stevia
  • 2 Tbsp Pure Maple Syrup
Chocolate Ganache
  • 1 Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Pure Maple Syrup
  • 1/2 Cup Cocoa
1. Grease a spring form pan.  I used coconut oil.

2. Food process/blend peanuts and almonds until desired size (you still want it to be a bit chunky, not a flour).  Add in the rest of the ingredients and blend until a dough forms.  Pack into the bottom of the pan.  Stash in the fridge so it firms up while you complete the next step.

3.  Blend the peanut butter filling until smooth.   I would suggest chopping the dates before throwing them in.  I had to blend like crazy.  Pour over the crust layer and put in fridge.

4.  Blend ganache layer.  Pour on top.

5.  Pop into the fridge or freezer for about 3 hours.

*Added suggestion:  Refrigerate until the ganache is semi-solid and pre-score your slices.  I think it would be best served frozen, but it'll be easier if your top layer is already cut.

ENJOY.



Monday, 17 September 2012

Being Gluten-Less

Earlier this year I jumped on a bandwagon.   That bandwagon was the Wheat Belly bandwagon.


After becoming increasingly frustrated with my inability to lose weight (and ability to put pounds on), I started to get wrapped up in the idea of becoming gluten free.  I read Wheat Belly, which made some excellent points while being a little repetitive and boring at times.   On top of the inability to lose weight, I was bloating all the time.  I would walk by a mirror after a meal and break down because I looked so "fat" and joked that baby Harris had arrived.  It was not a good time.

I decided to go gluten free earlier this year for a month just to see what would happen.  The answer: not much.

Without fan fare, on August 15, I decided to try it again.  One month gluten free.  But this time it came with some other "rules".

1) Don't replace gluten with more carbs - One of my issues last time was gluten free pasta and gluten free beer.  While not off limits per se, I had pasta maybe 1-2 times in that month.

2) Increase protein intake - Protein powders have made a comeback!  So good.  I bake tons of treats and make my shakes and really found they help keep me satisfied.  I also made sure to have a large portion of whatever I ate be protein.

3) Decrease sugar - aka stop the Starbucks - Honestly, part of this was the fact that my sugar came with gluten in baked treats that I'd 'just have a bite of' so in reducing gluten I was decreasing a lot of my not so great treats.  On top of that, an iced coffee with syrup was a normal occurrence even though I like my coffee with just milk most times. It's okay though, I found some awesome substitutes.

4) Work-Outs - I've actually worked out LESS in the last month than I was in the month before.  What's changed?  Making them count.... um... literally.   I can't count reps for the life of me.

5) Decrease stress - There's been a lot going on behind the scenes right now and I took several steps to make life a lot easier on me.  Including getting rid of the Mazerbatty.
Me just over 2 years ago with my first car.

6) Stop counting calories/get rid of the scale - I did it.  I got off MyFitnessPal.  I haven't been on the scale for a month.  What happened?  A lot of good things.


The rules going forward:  To be gluten-less.  I'll still have homemade pasta and pizza and beer sometimes.... but after seeing those two pics, it's going to be a heck of a lot less than it was. 

Friday, 14 September 2012

Why I disapeared (again)

Gosh I'm crummy at posting.

I'm aware that part of it is not having a plan.  I need to sit down and get a feel for what I want to write when.

Part of it had to do with something bigger.

I've been a social media junkie since the days of ICQ and dial-up.  Serious.

It was only a matter of time before I had a public blog and since I spend an unforgiving amount of time on healthy eating, food, and exercising blogs, plus spending a lot of time doing the aforementioned things, it ended up being about my struggles with my weight, and working out.


Last week I did a lot of awesome things I wanted to post about (and soon will), but there was something nagging at me that I couldn't decide if it should enter into the realm of the blogosphere.

But here it is.  I'm saying it.

I am not always a happy upbeat blogger and that is my thing.  I embrace that. 

But there are some things that I just can't accept for me in what I read on these blogs.  And that's okay too.

And I doubt that the people who write these things realize how I took what they put down in words in a tweet, on an instagram, or in a blog.  Again, that's okay.

I also realize I could just stop reading.  

But I'm going to express things anyways.

What are the things I don't understand??


1.  Implying that a certain weight is just "too big" on a certain frame.

I just spent the last month working on getting rid of the scale and not even focusing on my pant size.   Just because I may weigh something like 160-170lbs and I'm 5'1, doesn't mean my body isn't healthy.  It doesn't mean I don't go to the gym.  It doesn't mean I indulge all the time.   It's what my body has decided to plateau at.  And yeah, I'm eating better, and working harder to achieve some of my goals, which include seeing some abs, but I'm not about to tell you that I think 170lbs is just too much for my body to carry around.  It seems to be doing okay right now.

2.  Telling the world that eating one fast food, one calorific meal, a bagel, or drinking is a horrible, horrible, thing. 

Yup, those things are actually pretty bad for you.  WE ALL KNOW THAT.  Or at least I hope we do.  But some days, I just really want a friggin glass of wine.  And maybe some times I want some wine several days in a row.  And sometimes, I eat a pound of wings and decide on fries.  And that's okay.  Clean eating is a really awesome thing for our insides.  But we are not failures if we eat something crummy.  I admire your strict clean eating but don't make me feel bad that I chose moderation and a sweatathon at the gym.

3.  Not allowing fruit in your diet.

Ahhh I get it, I do.  We're a society who loves our sugar.... but fruit?  Really?  Sigh.  This makes me sad. 


There's more probably but I'll leave it there.  I'm going to prep my healthy take on some meals and desserts and get ready to drink my wine!

Standard fare.  Vino with a glass of eau.

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

My Head is Spinning

Over 3 years ago, I attended my first spin class at Heritage Fitness (Carleton Place) and it was good, but I wasn't smitten with it.  That said, I linked to this gym because if you ever find yourself in my hometown or surrounding area without access to a gym and you like lifting heavy things, this is an awesome place to go.

A few weeks after that, I moved to Ottawa/Barrhaven and ended up here: GoodLife - Strandherd.


My roommate and I fell into the routine of 9:30am Friday classes.  Such an awesome instructor and worth rushing to work for noon.  Even though some days I couldn't stand the repetitiveness of Les Mills RPM, I still go a good workout and loved the social aspect.  Spinners are loyal to their time, their bike, and their instructor.  Mess with one and let the fun begin. 

And then I moved to big bad Toronto.  Let me tell you, I'm all about convenience.  All of the gyms I've attended (except for Carleton Place) have been walkable.  So gone was Goodlife, and in was a new one just 3 blocks from my house.  Which meant new spin classes!  Oh my. 

My gym operates spin classes with an All Terrain feel.  Each instructor has their unique way of teaching, and can choose the pace of the class, music, etc.  I played around with the classes I could take and after hating every class I went to with one instructor, finally fell into Wednesdays at 9:30am with Anna.

Totally hooked.  Great workouts (uh hello, let's just put 16min of tabata in the middle, whooookay) and a friendly and motivating personality.  I found my class.


It was with a sad heart today that I attended what will probably be my last Wednesday morning class.  My job is switching hours to a normal pace 3 days a week (9-5) so I'll have to find a new class on the schedule to hit up.  So far it looks like Wednesday night!

We'll see how that goes when I get to it.  I'll probably have to miss a couple weeks of spin (the horror!) because of life. 

You'll probably never see this, but thanks Anna for being a kick ass instructor!