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Don’t forget your civic duty today, AND that you have the right to vote in this wonderful country!
Get to your local polls today!

If you are not sure where you local polling station is, please check out this site!

https://2014.votinginfoproject.org/

 

As you might have noticed from my Instagram feed, I am quiet obsessed with my Fitbit. It did take a nap for about a month pre and post wedding. But she is back on my wrist counting away steps every day. Some days are super exciting, like recently when I ran the Monster Dash 5K and set a personal record just under 19k steps.

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But then there are days like the day after my record setting day where I was like a slug, and barely logged 4K steps.

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But that slug mode is going to change in November!

For the holiday season, a group of our friends have decided to do a  ”Stepin It for a Cause Challenge”.  I could not be more excited for this challenge! Here is how the challenge is going to work.  We have 6 teams of 2, and each team is donating $20.  At the end of the challenge the team with the most steps gets to take the $120 pot and donate it to the charity of their choice.

The Hubby and I are partnered for this challenge, and have yet to decide on our charity. We would be open to any suggestions everyone has. We have a few causes in mind, just haven’t landed on one yet.  The Hubby is also really worried that I will be the weak link, and lose this challenge for us. Lets be honest, I am worried I will be the weak link.  You saw my variables above, I am a wild card. Some days I can play in the pros, others I am no more than a bump on a log.  I guess I need to get my game plan in check here for this challenge. We need to wind this for our charity… whatever it might be :)

Additionally, to give even more to charity, many of us are also going to track out steps for dogs with Woof Trax.  By  downloading the  Walk for a Dog App, it will run in the background and tracks your time, distance, and MPH.  You don’t need a dog (you can walk a virtual one).  Every mile walked or ran raises between $.11 and $.25.  You then can pick the specific animal charity you want to support, and they receive the proceeds for your steps.

 

How cool is all of this? Not only are we focusing on our own personal fitness, we are giving back in 2 separate ways!

I am so pumped to get Stepin’ Today!

What are you doing this holiday season to give back? 

 

 

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Day #5 of my 7 Day Clean Eating Challenge! Today I am sharing with you a recipe that has been all over the place lately- Overnight Refrigerator Oats.  I personally really do not like the typical hot oatmeal loaded with dried fruit, brown sugar and nuts.  First off I hate the texture, hot oatmeal is slimy and mushy. Second, for me to enjoy the taste of hot oatmeal, I need to add like a pound of sugar, and that just doesn’t seem right, and makes me feel ill.  So when recently I started to see co-workers, other coaches and friends either eating jars of oats in the morning or sharing recipes, my interests were peaked for sure. Even celebrities were toting these overnight oats as something to eat. I always heard oatmeal is SO GOOD for you and that it is a great morning breakfast, but I could never get on the bandwagon with it.  After making these little jars, I think  am finally on the bandwagon!

I started with making a very basic plain version and added raspberries on top. Which was super yummy and super easy.  Recipe: 1 pint jar, add 1/3 cup oats, 1/4 cup almond milk, 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt, close the lid and shake. Place in the refrigerator overnight, and enjoy in the morning. The oats might seem runny when you first shake it all together, but over night the mixture creates a pudding like consistency. No more sliminess here! Easy, fresh and simply, great way to start the morning.

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In my research on these jars I found MANY websites and a whole Pinterst page on how to make them and different recipes, heres is another basic, no frills recipe.

 In my world, I drink  Shakeology every morning to kick start the day.  So I thought, why not combine my new love for oatmeal with my shake? I had seen some recipes for overnight oats including protein powder, and even though Shakeology isn’t just protein powder, I thought it could work.  Again I started with 1 pint jar, add 1/3 cup oats, 1/4 cup almond milk, 1/4 cup greek yogurt, before closing the lid I also added 1/1 scoop of my chocolate Shakeology then shake again. I placed it in the refrigerator overnight too, and enjoyed in the morning.  This combo was so great, it was like having chocolate pudding for breakfast! #naughty  I also add peanut butter in my Shakeology each morning because I am PB & Chocolate combo obsessed! So its was a must for my jar of oats.
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I will have to say I am hooked, and these oats will now be making a regular appearance in my morning routine, even afternoon snack going forward!

Oh and like I said, these jars are all the rage right now, there even is a Buzzfeed for them “Overnight Oats Recipes to Restore You Faith In Breakfast.” Go check it out!

If you eat these already, comment with your favorite recipe! If not, will you be trying these soon? 

 

 

 

 

 

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Day #4 of my 7 Day Clean Eating Challenge!! Sorry this post is coming at night and not in the morning or afternoon per usual. Last night post my workout, I was so exhausted, that I fell asleep at like quarter to 9! Can you believe that? Mr. Tony Horton- my personal trainer ;-) -  really must have kicked my butt or something for me to clonk out that early.  I am super in love with P90x3 right now, and can’t get enough of AgilityX.  Basically for 30 minutes you are non-stop running around in figure 8′s, doing lunges and squats, and a few jumps.  That sounds miserable doesn’t it? I don’t know why, but all of the workouts I have done with P90x3, this one is my favorite. Maybe because it requires the least amount of balance. This girl is clumsy!  Or because I am dripping sweat when I am done, but it sure makes me feel good when I finish. And exhausted apparently.

I am so excited to share this recipe with you today. I was inspired by a few different recipes I saw, but in the end, I winged it.  I have a deep, deep love for artichoke dip, even though I know it isn’t too great for me.  I decided I was going to make it cleaner.  This recipe now hits on all the flavors I love in artichoke dip, without all the calories. And bonus it hit on my love for Mexican food too!

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I really hope after these photos you go make these,  SOON. I think I might sneak back in the kitchen and eat the leftovers….

Shrimp, Artichoke & Spinach Quesadilla 

yields 4 servings 

  • 8 corn tortillas 
  • 24 cooked shrimp, dried
  • 1/4 cup can artichoke hearts, chopped (I used 1/4 of a can)
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup spinach, shredded
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt (I use Lawry’s)
  1. In a bowl, mix artichokes, spinach, yogurt, garlic powder, seasoning salt, and cheese until fully incorporated. 
  2. Spread 1/4 of cheese mixture over each of 4 tortillas, leaving a 1/4 inch rim around the edge without cheese. This will leave room for the cheese to melt without spreading out of the quesadilla. Place 6 shrimp on top of each tortilla and then top with remaining tortillas. 
  3. Heat a large pan on medium-high, spray with a light layer of no stick cooking spray. Place 1 quesadilla in the pan. Cook for 3-4 minutes, then flip and cook for another 3-4 minutes.  Remove from pan, and let rest while you cook the remaining quesadillas.
  4. Serve with fresh pica de gallo, lettuce and plain greek yogurt.

 

 

 

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Happy Day #3 of my 7 Day Clean Eating Challenge!  As you will notice these little guys were not on the meal plan until Thursday but I made them Tuesday night?! Sometimes the night just calls for some grilling and your meal plan needs to shake up a little.  We can totally switch Tuesday dinner for Thursday dinner, because you know what,  I PLANNED and was prepare for this meal in advance!

Having a plan is always the best way to be successful in your eating and fitness. My coach, Lois, likes to say “If you FAIL to PLAN, you PLAN to FAIL”. I have been trying to live my this motto with eating and fitness.  In the rest of my life, I am personally trying to do the opposite, trying to be a little more go with the flow and not have all the details figured out. My Type A personally sometimes needs control, but letting go of control can feel oh so good.  Can you tell I am planning a wedding- the whole letting go of control part ;) ?!

Now on to the recipe. These fries are a super easy and can be thrown in while you are prepping the grill and ready by the time the burgers hit the table.  First you will need to gather the below suspects from the pantry- potatoes, garlic powder, basil, onion powder, oregano, parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and olive oil!

Can you tell I shop at Costco and Target much? I kind of have a problem..

 

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Once you cut up your fries, you will want to toss them in a light coat of olive oil and sprinkle them with all your seasonings, minus the cheese. These will be in the oven for a long time and the cheese will burn up if you put it on in the beginning.

 

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Now, 5 minutes before these little guys are done, you can pull them out of the oven and sprinkle them with cheese.  Return to the oven for the last 5 minutes to seal the cheese into the fries. #nomnom

 

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There you have it, fresh oven baked fries. Told you it would be easy and I can confirm they are tasty :)
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And here goes the recipe. HAPPY CLEAN EATING!

 

 Baked Parmesan Italian Fries 

yields 4 servings 

  • 5 large yellow potatoes 
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Sea salt
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • Parmesan cheese (freshly grated or packaged)
  • Olive Oil
  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Clean potatoes to remove any dirt. Cut potatoes into  quarters the long way, and then into quarters again the long way- making steak cut fries.
  3. Toss potatoes in olive oil to lightly coat.  Place on baking sheet with baking mats or directly on baking sheet in a single layer.
  4. Sprinkle all potatoes with onion powder, garlic powder, basil, oregano, sea salt and black pepper.
  5. Place on top shelf of the oven for 20 minutes, until corners are starting to brown and fries are easily poked with a  fork.
  6. Remove from oven and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Return to oven for 5 more minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and serve immediately with ketchup or you favorite sauce.

 

 
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