Monthly Archives: December 2014

The Peaks of My 2014

Happy New Year’s Eve everyone! What are your NYE plans?

My hubby and I are heading up to Anaheim today to meet up with my family, who are in town for a week. My dad is a high school football coach, and is coaching an all-star game with some of the best players in the nation here, so he’s in California with my mom, sister, older brother (who also coaches football), sister-in-law and nephews. It’s kind of funny that I was just in Jersey where they all live, and then a few days later they all flew out to my neck of the woods on the west coast, but I’m looking forward to getting to see them some more and spend New Year’s together!

As 2014 comes to a close, I thought it’d be neat to look back at the highs of my year. Here are my 2014 highlights!

Backyard-1

My backyard

Buying a home & moving back down to SoCal – Purchasing our first home and moving back down to the San Diego area from the Bay Area was certainly a whirlwind of a time for A and me (check out my post announcing it here!). Slowly but surely we’ve gotten settled in in our new home, and I’m loving being back in SoCal! From great farmers’ markets and the beach to beautiful parks and vegan restaurants, SoCal just fits my lifestyle and the things that I love to do.

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ClassPass: A Great Fit for the Hyperactive Exerciser (Like Myself)

When people ask me what workouts I typically do, I usually rattle off a list of things: hiking, kickboxing, cycling, strength training, yoga, rowing, barre, and so on. I usually follow it up by saying something along the lines of, “I do a lot of different regimens, but I’m not really an expert at any of them.”

headstand

It’s true, I’ve never been into just doing one type of workout. I know that lots of people are strictly runners, or are amazing yogis and that’s their signature regimen, or wherever their fitness passion may lie, but for me, I’ve always wanted to do a bit of everything. I call it exercise ADD, and I figure that as long as I’m moving, it’s good for my body and soul to keep switching it up.

ClassPass San Diego

Over the past month, I’ve been trying out ClassPass. You can check out my full intro to ClassPass here, but the overall gist is that it’s a program that just hit San Diego last month that allows members to schedule classes at lots of different nearby studios. I’ve found that for fellow fitness lovers who enjoy variety, ClassPass is a great option.

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Home for the Holidays {Christmas Week Recap}

Happy weekend!  

I hope that all of those that celebrate it had a wonderful Christmas. I arrived back in SoCal late last night. I had a fabulous time in Jersey, but as always, it’s nice to get back home too.

My week at home sped by, and while it was a pretty quick trip compared to how long I typically go home for, I had a ton of fun. Here are some snapshot highlights of what my days in Jersey looked like:

Lots of family time: 

family group shot

My brothers, sister, sister-in-law, nephews, my brother’s girlfriend, my parents, their new puppy Jada, my hubby and me

My entire immediate family was together a few times: once for a party for my sister’s birthday, and once for Christmas Day.

Christmas family pic

{The best family shot that we could muster on Christmas Day}

Christmas-2

{With my parents and sister}

Christmas 2014

{Christmas with my hubby}

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Conquering the Reformer Machine at Core40 {Workout Review}

I was shaking like a leaf, watching beads of sweat drip off my forehead and onto the floor below me as I attempted to hold my last plank move of the class and finish my workout strong. It was a spinning + strength training combo workout at Core40 in nearby Solana Beach, and boy, was it a tough one.

My friends, say hello to the Lagree “Superformer” machine, and the latest workout to kick my ass.

Core40 Reformer

I was first introduced to Core40 studios when my friend Tiffany became certified in the Lagree method earlier this year. She gave birth to an adorable little boy this past March, and when I asked her how her body had not only bounced back from pregnancy, but looked even more toned than before, she told me that Lagree was one of the major reasons. Tiffany and I have done a variety of workouts together, and she’s into healthy living too. When she talked about Lagree, she would describe it as being really challenging…. and about 5 minutes into my first class, I was experiencing exactly what she meant.

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30-Minute HIIT Holiday Workout

Happy Friday everyone!

Greetings from New Jersey! My hubby and I arrived in the northeast late last night. I’m really looking forward to spending the holidays with our families. There’s going to be a lot of baking, cooking, drinking, and celebrating in my life this trip, so I will be making sure to balance it out a bit with a couple of workouts as well.

Wine Tasting

There’s always a lot of good vino involved when staying at my parents!

Whenever I’m back in my home state visiting, I find ways to squeeze in workouts. Sometimes my mom and I do exercise DVDs in the living room together, and other times I make up routines to bang out first thing in the morning before my day of visiting with everyone starts.

Lately I’ve been digging HIIT workouts – which stands for High Intensity Interval Training, and is when you alternate short bursts of intense exercise with short periods of recovery. I love them because I’m so focused on the interval timing and the exercise that I’m doing at that moment, that the workouts totally speed by.

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Asian Sesame Noodle Salad

Hello!

I’m feeling very excited to fly home and see my family tomorrow! I know that while I’m on my trip I’ll be indulging a lot and not exercising as much (especially with frigid temperatures in Jersey and my crazy pup not being with me to nudge me to take her on walks!). That’s perfectly fine and I’m looking forward to the vacation, but knowing this, I have been mindful in making some of my meals extra healthy and produce-packed lately.

holiday green juice

For one thing, I’ve been eating a lot of veggies to help build up my immune system a bit and protect myself from getting sick while I’m traveling and around so many people during the holidays. For another thing, eating really healthy meals helps balance out the sweets that have inevitably been present in my life more so than usual. Yesterday I made cupcakes and cookies that I gave out to a couple of friends as little holiday treats, and I taste tested so much I felt overloaded with sugar. Ick.

peppermint joe joe's

Have you guys tried these? Ah-mazing.

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Apple, Pecan & Dried Cherry Salad + My Wine Cork Wreath

Hi friends! Hope that you all had a wonderful December weekend. This was the last weekend I had before traveling to the East coast for the holidays, so my days were productive with Christmas gift, house and trip prep stuff. Here were some other highlights:

Rock & Roll Yoga

My Saturday began with a 90-minute rock-n-roll yoga class. I was ridiculously sore from a kettlebell class I took on Thursday and had been walking around like a 90-year old lady, so I was a little worried that my balance and range of motion would be horrible. My practice was a bit limited, but I left yoga with a happy heart, feeling stretched out and a tad less sore.

Roses

I spent some time in my backyard with my hubby finishing up painting in our backyard – oh, the life of a homeowner! Since it rained a few days last week, my rose bushes are now bursting with gorgeous color. I just love when they’re like this!

3 lb cheddar

My hubby’s grandmom sent us a THREE POUND hunk of cheddar cheese, along with maple syrup and pancake mix as a holiday gift. It warmed my heart when she said that she sent it to us because the cheese is organic and from farm-raised animals, and she knows that I’m into all of that. I couldn’t resist opening that baby up for a weekend dinner… Broc Spag Squash Mac & Cheese

…and made elbow pasta, broccoli, ricotta, and spaghetti squash mac & cheese. It was one of those dinners when I didn’t measure anything (except the cheese because I was curious as to how much I grated – 14 oz!) and used up leftovers in the fridge, and it turned out really yummy.

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Chocolate Raspberry Mocktail + Puritan’s Pride Giveaway!

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Puritan’s Pride, but as always, all opinions expressed are my own.

Hi friends!

Today’s post is the last installment of my 3-part Puritan’s Pride seasonal smoothie challenge. You may remember that in October, the theme was pumpkin smoothies (you can check out my chocolate chip pumpkin protein smoothie here), and my November creation was a pineapple mint smoothie for the belly soother smoothie theme. So what do we have going on for this month? Yummy mocktails!

mocktail-3

This simple 4-ingredient mocktail includes dark chocolate and cocoa powder, which are sources of antioxidants to support total-body wellness. Raspberries are a great source of antioxidants, fiber, and nutrients, and using frozen ones makes the mocktail a bit creamier.

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WIAW: My Favorite Eats of the Week

Happy Hump Day!

Harley Christmas bow

Being that it has been quite awhile since I linked up to the What I Ate Wednesday blogger party, I decided to join in on this fun this week. Today’s WIAW post features my favorite eats from the past week – because as any normal food blogger, whenever I eat something tasty, I snap a photo or two!

WIAWbutton

So what goodies has this vegetarian been munching on?

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Chocolate Mint Oatmeal Flax Cookies [Gluten Free]

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here!

Holiday Decor Collage

My weekend was full of holiday related activities: buying a tree and decorating it, buying outside lights and decorating my front yard, shopping for gifts, and starting this DIY craft…

DIY cork wreath

…a wine cork wreath! I’m not all that crafty but I’ve been wanting to do something with the many corks I have around, so I decided to give it a go! I’ll be sure to share the final product, which I’ll hopefully have done later this week. Chances are I’ll be glue gunning corks at 11 pm tonight!

Coinciding with my holiday cheer, I also did some baking last weekend.

mint cookie baking

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