Monthly Archives: October 2012

Overnight Crock Pot/Slow Cooker Pumpkin Pie Steel Cut Oats

Last night I actually succeeded in going to bed by 10 pm.  Can you believe it!?!  This is the first time I have gotten to bed this early in quite a while, and it was so much easier to get up this morning when my alarm went off.  Although, I still had the urge to throw said alarm across the room when it went off.  I really don’t think I’ll ever get over hating alarm clocks.

This morning had to be a super quick protein packed breakfast since I had to head out the door quickly after getting my son ready for school and on the bus.  Therefore, I planned ahead and made my overnight slow cooker pumpkin pie steel cut oats.  Trust me, it is as good as it sounds, and this morning it is freezing out and there was snow on the ground, so it warmed me right up.  I also added a scoop of protein powder to my oatmeal to add some extra protein.


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Ingredients:

  • 2 c steel cut oats
  • 1 15 oz can of pureed pumpkin
  • 5-6 c water
  • 2 c milk (you can use almond milk too)
  • 2-3 T ground flax seeds (optional but they are really good for you:)
  • 1 T pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 c maple syrup, brown sugar, or honey (optional)

Directions:

Mix all ingredients in crock pot/slow cooker.  I spray down the sides of my crock pot.  Set on low for 5-6 hours or on warm for 8-10 hours.  Stir the oats the next morning and serve!!!  One night I accidentally set the crock pot on warm instead of low and discovered you can cook the oats on warm and have an easier clean up after (less scraping the sides/soaking time)…I have also forgotten to plug in the crock pot after turning it on…That did now work out as well.  The sweeteners are optional.  I usually cook the oats with 1/4 c of maple syrup and then add a bit of brown sugar to my own bowl in the morning with some raw sliced almonds or shredded coconut.

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Mix all ingredients in crock pot/slow cooker. I spray down the sides of my crock pot. Set on low for 5-6 hours or on warm for 8-10 hours.


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Yum!!!

New Goals with Best Body Bootcamp

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Well, it is time for me to get rid of the 10 pounds I gained since moving to North Dakota (so far I have shed 3).  I wish I could say it was all muscle mass I gained, but I’m nowhere near that lucky.  I got back into a great daily workout routine once I started teaching at the Y last month, but I really need that extra kick in the butt, and to be held accountable.  Plus (as a trainer) I love learning from other trainers.  Oh, and Best Body Bootcamp has a ton of BIG cash prizes!!!

Tina Reale has come up with a great 8 week workout program!  I was lucky enough to have met Tina ages ago, and I can tell you that she is the real deal.  Not only is she an amazing trainer she is also an amazing and caring person, and she wants to see everyone succeed.

bigstock_Fitness_and_health_concept_in__25382894_thumbThis 8 week training program is great, and only costs $25!  Not only do you get 8 weeks worth of amazing workouts you can do at home…you get huge cash prizes!  At the end of the 8 weeks there will be five $1000 cash prizes!  Then each week there will be a $100 cash prize!  The prizes are determined/based on your consistency and commitment to staying active and achieving personal health and fitness goals of your choosing.  This is NOT about who loses the most weight/inches or looks “the best” in progress photos. It IS about staying committed to better choices and habits, challenging yourself, and making a lifestyle change for the better.

Each day with Best Body Bootcamp you have a workout and two goals that you are held accountable for (must complete them in order to be eligible for prizes).  Your goals can change each week, and this is where I had to stop and think.  Of course, I have goals for myself in life, but my daily goals are really something I have never thought about.  Like most other wives, mothers, and women out there my daily goals (more like tasks) are pretty basic…try to eat healthy, exercise, make sure the family is cared for, and get the never ending laundry and dishes done.  Never once have I thought about coming up with 2 daily goals that will better my health.  Sad huh?  Well, I had to sit and think for a bit.  Finally I came up with two goals I really need to have on a daily basis.

First goal:  Eat a protein filled breakfast!  I know I don’t need to lecture all of you on the benefits of eating breakfast.  However, like most Americans I am not a morning person.  I literally have to force a bowl of oatmeal or toast down my throat in the mornings before I head off to teach my classes.  So, now my goal is to eat a protein filled breakfast.  This will give me more energy and keep me fuller throughout the day!

Second goal:  Go to bed by 10 pm!  This one is gonna be a hard one too.  My son is in bed by 8:30 at night, and after that I clean up the kitchen, put things away, and start getting everything ready for the next day.  Then, I take a shower and pick up a book to read.  By this time it is easily 10 pm or later, and once I start reading a good book I can stay up to all hours of the night (and I wonder why I want a nap so badly in the afternoons).  So, it is time for me to finally get the amount of sleep my body needs!  Wish me luck!

So, this all brings me to my question for you….Do you have any daily goals that will make you healthier?

Pumpkin Pie Muddie Buddies!!!

My first Biscoff recipe came off without a hitch, and is a complete hit!  I almost hate myself for making these muddie buddies, because they are so good and addicting!  I have to apologize for not having a picture of all the melted ingredients mixed together.  I was too busy thinking about how I was going to get to lick the bowl and forgot!

These are a perfect addition to any party, or if you just want something sweet to snack on!  Make them today!  You will not regret it.


Ingredients

  • 9 c Chex, Crispix, or like cereal (I use an organic cereal)
  • 2 c powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 c white chocolate chips
  • 1/2 heaping c Biscoff
  • 4 T butter
  • 1 tsp pumpkin spice

Directions

Put cereal in a large bowl.  In a microwave safe bowl combine white chocolate, Biscoff, and butter.  Microwave for 1 minute or until melted.  Remove from microwave and stir together.  Then, stir in pumpkin spice.  Add the mixture to the cereal.  Stir till mixture coats the cereal.  Add the powdered sugar to a large bag.  Place the cereal mixture in the bag.  Seal the bag and shake it until all the individual cereal pieces are coated with the sugar.  Spread the muddie buddies out on wax paper to cool.  Once cooled place in an air tight container or bag.  Try not to eat it all in one day!

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Put cereal in a large bowl. In a microwave safe bowl combine white chocolate, Biscoff, and butter. Microwave for 1 minute or until melted. Remove from microwave and stir together. Then, stir in pumpkin spice. Add the mixture to the cereal. Stir till mixture coats the cereal.

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Place the cereal mixture in the bag. Seal the bag and shake it until all the individual cereal pieces are coated with the sugar.

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Spread the muddie buddies out on wax paper to cool.


Once cooled place in an air tight container or bag. Try not to eat it all in one day!

Stability Ball Circuit Workout

This morning my little man is sick with a fever, so I hung out with him down stairs and did my workout while he was on the couch watching Madagascar 3.  I must say that I laughed quite a bit at the movie while working out, and it made it even harder for me to keep my balance.

Stability Balls/Swiss Balls are great for exercising and a must for any home gym!  What is so great about them is that they work your core muscles the whole time and make any exercise more challenging.  Stability Balls also help you strengthen your spinal stability, increase muscle usage, and improve balance.  How could you ever go wrong incorporating a stability ball into your workouts?

Each exercise in this circuit workout is done with a stability ball.  If you are not sure how to do each exercise that is not a problem.  Below are links that will show you how to do each exercise.


Stability Ball Workout

20 Minute Treadmill Workout and a Great Discovery

I have discovered something truly wonderful!  It is sweet and creamy and becoming a new addiction.  My new wonderful discovery is…drum roll please…Biscoff Spread! If you love peanut butter and cannot live without Nutella, then Biscoff Spread will have you in heaven in no time flat. This sweet spread is made from those wonderful cookies they used to give you on all your flights.

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I came across this wonderful spread when looking for apple oatmeal recipes. A woman was adding this spread to her oatmeal in the morning. Well, I didn’t know these wonderful cookies were turned into a spread, so I went to Amazon and ordered myself some.  If you live in bigger cities and towns you will be able to find this at your local grocery store and Walmart.

Now, I have a wonderful friend who loves the Biscoff cookies you get on your flights, so I waited to open the jar and sample the goodness until she was able to come over and try it with me. Well, it was all we could do not to dive into that jar like a couple of pigs with our spoons. She immediately ordered some for herself too! As for me, well, we are on our second jar.

I’ve been racking my brains with ways to bake with this spread, and I’ve come up with two of my own recipes.  Pumpkin Spice Muddie Buddies and Biscoff Apple Streusel Muffins.  I’ll be making the Muddie Buddies today after the gym, so keep an eye out for the recipe!

On to the workout for today!

Today is another cold dreary day, and I hate days like this.  They make you feel so unmotivated to do anything.  Thankfully I’m teaching cycling at the gym today, so there will be no slacking off for me today.  I’m only teaching a 30 Minute Cycle Express class today, so I’m going to want to do a bit more cardio afterwards, so I’ll head upstairs to the treadmills and do a 20 Minute Treadmill Workout.  This workout is designed to kick those butt muscles in gear and get rid of that pesky fat back there tooSmile.  You will stay at a consistent fast walking pace the whole time while climbing some hills.  The time will fly by on this one.  Trust me.


20 Minute Glute Treadmill Workout

Pumpkin Streusel Coffee Cake with Caramel Glaze

It is a cold and rainy fall day here in good old North Dakota, so I felt the need to bake.  Well, I’m totally sick of baking with apples right now, so I broke out the pumpkin instead!  Nothing says fall more than breaking out the pumpkin and making a yummy treat with it.


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This pumpkin coffee cake recipe is super easy and fast to make.  It uses a cake box mix (I use Arrowhead Mills Organic Vanilla Cake Mix…I’m not a fan of all the chemicals in the other box mixes).  You can find this mix in all your major grocery stores.  I used to buy it in Publix when we lived in Florida.

Now this coffee cake is beyond rich and delicious and best served warm.  On occasion I would make this coffee cake for friends in Florida, and they would eat the whole thing in just a few days and beg for more and the recipe.  Well ladies, here is the recipe!!


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Ingredients:

  • 1/4 c oil
  • 1/3 c water
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 15 oz can of pureed pumpkin
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 18 oz box of yellow cake mix (I use Arrowhead Mills Organic Vanilla Cake Mix)
  • 1 tsp baking soda

Streusel Topping:

  • 1/2 c brown sugar
  • 1/2 c flour
  • 4 T melted butter

Caramel Glaze:

  • 1/4 c sugar
  • 1/2 c brown sugar
  • 4 T butter
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 c heavy whipping cream

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  In a large mixing bowl add the oil, water, eggs, pureed pumpkin, 1 tsp of vanilla, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon.  Mix until well combined.  Then, add the cake mix and baking soda until combined.  Don’t over mix.  Grease a 9 x 13 pan and pour in the batter.  In a small bowl, mix together the streusel topping ingredients.  Using your fingers, sprinkle the streusel topping over the cake.  Bake at 350 for 40-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.  When the cake is almost finished baking make the caramel glaze.  In a small sauce pan, over medium low heat, combine all the glaze ingredients.  Bring the glaze to a simmer and then remove from the heat.  Make sure all the sugar has dissolved.  When the cake has finished baking, poke holes all over the top of the cake with a chop stick or toothpick a bunch of times.  Pour the caramel glaze over the cake, making sure to cover the whole cake.  Allow the glaze to soak into the cake.  Once cooled eat up!!!

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In a large mixing bowl add the oil, water, eggs, pureed pumpkin, 1 tsp of vanilla, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon. Mix until well combined.

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Then, add the cake mix and baking soda until combined. Don’t over mix.

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Grease a 9 x 13 pan and pour in the batter.

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In a small bowl, mix together the streusel topping ingredients.

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Using your fingers, sprinkle the streusel topping over the cake.  Bake at 350 for 40-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

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When the cake has finished baking, poke holes all over the top of the cake with a chop stick or toothpick a bunch of times.

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When the cake is almost finished baking make the caramel glaze. In a small sauce pan, over medium low heat, combine all the glaze ingredients. Bring the glaze to a simmer and then remove from the heat. Make sure all the sugar has dissolved.

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Pour the caramel glaze over the cake, making sure to cover the whole cake.

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Allow the glaze to soak into the cake.


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Once cooled eat up…although, it its best served warm!!!

30 Minute Interval Zombie Treadmill Run!

This year I was unable to do the Run for Your Lives Zombie 5K Run.  I absolutely love this race and obstacle course.  If you have never done it, I highly recommend you sign up for the one nearest you!  This race is a ton of fun, and even more fun if you do it with a group of friends (unless your one friend throws you into a zombie in order to save herselfSmile).

At the beginning of this fun filled race you are given a belt with flags on it…just like in flag football.  Your goal is to make it through the race with at least one flag left.  The zombies will try to take your flags throughout the race, but there are “health bonuses” throughout the course with more flags for you to pick-up.  There are also optional obstacle courses for you to do if you would like (be prepared to get muddy if you do).  At the end you will receive a medal based on if you are “alive” or if you have joined the “undead.”  Trust me when I say this is a race you must do.  You will find yourself laughing and shrieking the whole way through.  Plus there is a great party with vendors, food, and drinks after the race!  I know for a fact that I will be at the one in Minnesota next year with at least one friend, and I’m really excited about doing this race again!

In the meantime, I’ve come up with an interval treadmill run based on my experiences at my previous Run for Your Lives Zombie 5K Run.  First, you start out walking and looking around.  Then, you hear something, so you start jogging.  Finally, a zombie is coming for you, so you take off sprinting.  This should burn quite a few calories off your bum and you could do it on an elliptical too!  Enjoy!


Zombie Treadmill Run 2