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Archive for the ‘Walking’ Category

Recently I tried something new. Diana from Aloic contacted me to see if I would like to try their Aloe Vera Drink. I said Yes, Please. So she sent me a few bottles to taste and experiment with. But before I get down with a review, I wanted to share some information about Aloic with you from their Website. Check them out here. 

Here’s Their Story: This is taken directly from their website. At Epicurex LLC, we are devoted to sharing the exotic tastes of Asia with the rest of the world. We are proud to produce only drinks of the highest quality, freshness, and authenticity, using only the best all-natural, USDA organic ingredients that taste great and contribute to a healthy lifestyle.

That has been our mission since we started our company: to create superior beverages that taste like sea breeze and sunshine. And here in South Florida, we’re doing just that with Aloic™, a tasty fusion of certified organic aloe juice and pulp, with no preservatives, nothing artificial, and no high-fructose corn syrup – just plenty of flavor.

We invite you to get to know us – and our products – better. We think you’ll find that we’re just what you’ve been searching for: all natural, all delicious, and all about healthy living, wherever you are.

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Here’s some additional information taken directly from their webpage:

TOP REASONS TO DRINK ALOIC

Aloic™ is good for you — really, really, good for you. Aloe Vera can aid digestion, and even help you lose that pesky belly fat.

It also tastes great. The real aloe pulp in Aloic™ adds yummy texture, and you’ll know you’re drinking more of the good stuff that’s also good for you.

It’s all natural, too: certified organic aloe and pulp, no preservatives, nothing artificial, no high fructose corn syrup or fake flavors or colors. And Aloic™ is only 60 calories per serving.

Your kids will love the taste of Aloic™, and it’s a much better choice for them than those soft drinks or sugary fruit juices they usually go for. Tuck one into someone’s lunchbox, today — maybe even your own.

Another great reason to drink Aloic™? Aloe vera can help you to live longer. It’s true: Published studies have shown a 10 percent increase in lifespan, as well as beneficial effects on age-related illnesses. Aloe contains glycoproteins and polysaccharides, which aid the healing process and stimulate cell growth and repair, so you can start feeling good all over.

But the top reason to drink Aloic™ is the way you’ll feel when you make it part of your healthy lifestyle — but we can’t tell you about that; you’ll have to experience it for yourself.

So go ahead. Try it. Love it. And feel the benefits of real, organic aloe vera as they go to work for you.

So now to the fun part, reviewing Aloic.

I am not shy with my option and I must admit, I love to try new things! So first I tried Aloic right out of the bottle after a 45 minute walk on the treadmill. I was thirsty and my throat was dry. I immediately noticed the natural sweet grape flavor, and liked it very much, but what I really enjoyed was the pulp texture in the drink. So refreshing. So after a few swigs, my thirst was quenched, and I was ready for an after workout smoothie. So I grabbed some frozen fruit from the freezer and pulled out my smoothie blender, along with my favorite protein powder and of course the rest of my Aloic Aloe Vera Drink.

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Aloic Aloe Vera Smoothie

  • 1 to 1/2 Bottle of Aloic Aloe Vera Drink
  • 1 Scoop Protein Powder
  • 1 Handful Frozen Raspberries
  • 1/2 Frozen Banana

Blend for 45 seconds and enjoy. If using fresh fruit, just add 2 ice cubes.

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I so enjoyed trying Aloic, thank-you Diana you were right it really is a great replacement for soda and can develop into a healthy habit!

If your interested in finding out more on Aloic, go on over to Twitter @aloicdrink

I received two bottles of Aloic to sample from the company, and I am sharing my honest opinion in this post.

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Cheers.

Check Ya Later.

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Last week my best friend Jody put in a request for a virtual meal.  Jody lives in Miami and I was so excited she asked me to make this, because it has been a long time since I made them, and I love them. Jody has been my best friend for 13 years and I value her friendship more than words can say. She moved to Miami from Michigan a few years ago for an amazing job opportunity, I miss her everyday, but she is my forever friend and distance does not change our friendship.

So after work I ran out and got some ingredients and made her request. Chicken Lettuce Wraps.

This is an easy, fast recipe.

Lots of healthy ingredients.

Cooking time was less than 8 minutes.

Made a fresh salad to go along with this light dinner.

Yummy, crisp and light.

Love the crunch from the water chestnuts. Amazing how much flavor they absorb from the sauce.

Also made my new favorite dessert. I just love me some Chobani Cheese Cake.

Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Adapted from Real Simple. 

Ingredients

  • 3  tablespoons  low-sodium soy sauce
  • 3  tablespoons  honey
  • 2  tablespoons  canola oil
  • 1 1/2  pounds  boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • black pepper
  • 2  cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1  tablespoon  grated ginger
  • 1  bunch scallions, trimmed and sliced
  • 1  8-ounce can sliced water chestnuts, drained
  • 1/4  cup roasted chopped nuts
  • 1  small head Boston or Bibb lettuce, leaves separated
  • Garnished with mung bean sprouts

Directions

  1. Combine the soy sauce and honey in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  3. Season the chicken with ½ teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until it begins to brown, about 3 minutes.
  4. Lower heat to medium and stir in the garlic and ginger. Add the scallions and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Stir in the water chestnuts and half the soy sauce mixture. Continue cooking until the chicken is cooked through, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and sprinkle with the chopped nuts.
  6. Divide the lettuce leaves among plates and spoon the chicken over the top. Serve with the remaining soy sauce mixture for drizzling. Top with mung beans sprouts for garnish.

Jody I hope you enjoy your virtual meal! I had fun making them. 

I also just found out yesterday that Jody is coming back to Michigan for the Thanksgiving holiday for a visit. Her family still lives in Michigan and when she comes to visit her family, they welcomes me into their home like I am part of the family. So I am over the moon with excitement that I get to see my Jody in 146 Days. Jeff and I went to Miami in March to visit Jody, so this is quite a treat that I get to see her twice in one year. 2012 is turning into an amazing year. Love you Jody.

Now onto a Fitmixer update.

So I have been doing the Fitmixer Bootcamp since May 14th. and we have just passed the 1/2 way mark. We completed a fit test on our first day and again at the 1/2 way point. I am happy to report that I was able to complete with ease several additional reps to each task. One exercise that I was really happy with seeing an increase was the Burpees. I did an additional 5 reps with ease and really felt like my form was solid the entire time, where the first time I felt like I was getting really sloppy towards the end.

So in addition to the workouts, I also walk a local farm trail which is a 2 mile walk. I walk it most weekdays and it ends up being a nice 30 minute walk. Walking helps keep me stretched after a good boot camp workout.

Question of the Day:  What’s you favorite workout right now? I am loving my boot camp workouts.

Check ya Later.

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I took all these pictures on my Blackberry phone, really happy how clear the pictures come out. Just wanted to share a walk/hike I took with my husband and my dogs on the farm trail. I am lucky that I live near a farm and the owners like for people to use the trails. My dogs love the hike and they know that after the hike we go and feed the chickens, I love visiting the Lovely Ladies.

A while back I posted a walk on the farm called I hiked. Well after Hiking the Flat Iron in Boulder, I feel like my Michigan trail is now more of a walk/hike in comparison.  But a walk is a walk and I love walking outdoors.

Kind of obsessed with taking pictures of shadows.

This years crop is going to be field corn, and field corn gets super high, so I hope to show the progress the corn is making. I walk this trail often so I will keeping posting pictures and share them. Last years crop was soybean and they are not as exciting as the corn is, as far as the growing process goes.

Stuart loved the trail. He smells and marks every thing.

Killian always leads us, he gets the long lead leash for farm walks.

Stuart gets tired on this walk, but he really pushes through it like a stallion.

So after the walk we headed to see the Lovely Ladies and give them my kitchen scraps, some bread and some shredded carrots. I love to feed the ladies, they really are beautiful.

They love human visitors. The dogs stay in the car, they stress the chickens out so we only let the dogs watch them from the car.

Then we headed home. Saying good-bye to the farm. I love being out on the farm.

But we left with a treat. Fresh asparagus that the farmer had on his personal vegetable plot. Score.  I think foods from the farm that are fresh always taste better than the vegetables I get from the grocery store. I am very excited that after Memorial Day my Friday Farm Market opens up. All the products sold are from local farms in my area.

Had a great day, perfect weather, and stayed active.

Question of the Day: Do you notice the taste difference from fresh farm foods over store-bought foods?

Check Ya Later.

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Had a great Saturday for many reasons. I did one of my favorite things, I Hiked.  After a hearty Instant Oatmeal Pancake, Jeff and I took a nice long hike at a local farm. Here’s the Instant Oatmeal Recipe and Directions.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Packet Instant Oatmeal (any flavor)
  • ½ Banana , Mashed
  • ½ Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • ½ Teaspoon Vanilla
  • ½ Teaspoon Swanson Organic Cinnamon
  • 13 cup Egg Beaters Egg Substitute

Directions:

  • Mix and combine all ingredients.
  • Pour into non-stick skillet and when you shake the pan and the pancake moves, it’s time to flip.
  • Brown on both sides

     

The farm has a path that runs along the crop, it has not been planted yet, but they will be planting it soon. While we were walking a few of the farmers were out plowing the field.

There are also all these amazing trails through the woods just off the path.

We took a walk through the woods after we walked the path. We know the trails really well and only walk them when it is not hunting season. There are several hunters that hunt the property.

Today I felt brave and climbed up a tree stand. Well almost to the top. I was a bit freaked out about being up so high.

Jeff waited patiently for me to test out my fear’s.

I never realized I had a fear of heights, I normally don’t but I guess the climbing combined with the height is really what got me. I climbed to the top step, but could not step onto the deck, I just took a few pictures and stepped back down the latter really slowly.

I just love hiking through the woods and along the path’s I really cannot think of a better way to spend the day with my husband.

No rest day for the farmers, they always seem to be in the fields this time of year.

We got a bit dirty on the trail, but it was worth it, I had a blast.

I also planning on hitting the trails as often as I can before the Blend Retreat, it’s less than 3 weeks away now. We have a planned hike on the retreats agenda and I want to be ready for it. It always seems like Hiking engages different muscles than walking and the elliptical machine does. So getting a few hikes in before should help.

I’m attending Blend Retreat 2012.

Question of the Day: If you could choose, would you rather Walk, Run or Hike? 

Check Ya Later.

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So it’s already mid-week, and I am not sure how it went by so fast, but who am I to argue with time.

In other news I am so happy that my Treadmill is Back on Track. A few week’s back the track on my treadmill took a turn for the worse and I had to stop using it. The bottom backing on tread was shredding and it was starting to jam up in the motor. After looking into it, I realized that I could get a replacement track. So that’s what I did. I love my treadmill and the thought of having to invest in a new one was not what I wanted to do at this time. So getting the replacement belt was the best option.

The process of changing it out was more than I thought, but was not a problem for my husband. He unscrewed this and loosened that and pulled tools out of his tool box and made grunting noises and the next thing you know the belt slid off and we could slide on the new one, I actually helped with that part.

The old track was really beat up and shredding in several places, more so than I could see before taking the belt off, but the new one is on, and now I have to break it in. I can only say this, Hooray.

This also came just in time for my Best Body Boot Camp Program. I was hoping that I could alternate Elliptical and Treadmill for the Cardio portion of the Program.

BEST BODY BOOTCAMP

As far as Boot Camp is going, let me say this, I love it. I am being introduced to exercises I normally would not attempt. Plus I am actually using my home equipment and I am having fun and learning to push myself. Being a part of a big group like this is really exciting, I am meeting other bloggers and readers. We’re all supporting each other via Social Media and keeping each other posted on what we liked and how it’s going for each of us.

I also have a great support system at home, and I have started to include my dogs in the Boot Camp.

They are getting daily walks and we’ve cut back on their treats.

Look at these little faces.

They love carrots, and that has been a reward for them instead of dog biscuits.

They go cuckoo for carrots.

Wanting a healthy snack for myself that was salty, I remembered a recipe I had for Roasted Chickpeas. I like to keep healthy fun snacks on hand so I don’t make poor choices.

Ingredients

  • 1 (12 ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt (optional)
  • garlic salt or garlic gold nuggets (optional)
  • cayenne pepper (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Blot chickpeas with a paper towel to dry them. In a bowl, toss chickpeas with olive oil, and season to taste with salt, garlic salt/garlic gold nuggets, and cayenne pepper, if using. Spread on a baking sheet, and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until browned and crunchy. Watch carefully the last few minutes to avoid burning.

I used a high sided cookie sheet for these.

 They get golden brown and some of the little buggers even popped like popcorn, scare the heck out of me.

In the end they are so taste, they are soft in the center and they just sort of melt when you eat them.

I’m keeping a container with me to snack on through out the day.

Hope your having a good week so far! It’s 60 degrees here in Michigan and everyone I have talked to and seen has been in such a great mood, funny how weather really does affect our moods. 

Question of the day: What’s your pets favorite treat? 

Check Ya Later.

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Anytime I catch myself saying I can’t, I give my self a challenge. When the weather starts to get cold and during hunting season, I stop walking my hiking trails. I normally do my hikes in the mornings before the temperature and humidity levels get to high and before I go into work. Well in the winter I get lazy and do my workouts after work in my home. The other day I caught myself telling some one that I can’t workout before work.

After I said it, I wondered why can’t I. Well the only answer that I could come up with was that I don’t like to wake up early, and I have convinced myself that I get a better workout after I have worked all day. Well that’s not good enough, that’s a weak excuse. So I challenged myself, to wake up an hour earlier and do my cardio in the morning.

So this morning I woke up an hour early and did a 45 minute power walk on the treadmill. I’m so glad I did, I felt great all day. Now I just have to see if I can keep this up. It’s funny getting up in the spring, summer and fall is not a problem for me, like it is in the winter.

Last night I got to work on my weeks menu. So I decided on Tofu Tuesday.

Is it weird to say that I’m in love with my Tofu Press. Well I am. This little press is magical, it presses out the liquid in the tofu then it lets you marinate right in the container. It has a little lid attached to the bottom that seals it up tight while it marinates.

I combed through my tofu cookbooks for a new recipe, but decided to make my favorite, Roasted Lime Marinated Tofu.

When I got home from work I got my workout cloths on and got on my weights workout. Today is arms/shoulders/chest day and I had a plan ready to go.

Workout:

Set #1 (3 Sets of 10) (5 Pound Hand Weights)

  • Side Shoulder Raises
  • Bicep Curls
  • Hinged Row

Set#2 (3 Sets of 10) (5 Pound Hand Weights)

  • Front Raises
  • Tricep Kickbacks
  • Overhead Press
Set#3 (3 Sets of 12) (15 Pound Weight Bar)
  • Behind the Neck Shoulder Press
  • Chest Press
  • Upright Row
This workout got me sweating. I really concentrated on my form and did slow and steady movements. I’m also working on breathing, I noticed that I hold my breath during strenuous lifting. Here’s what the Livestrong Website has to say about breathing during weight lifting.
Breathing is an involuntary act, but when you are lifting weights, you may forget to breathe. Holding the breath, called the Valsalva maneuver after a 17th century Italian physician, is a common reaction to heavy muscular exertion. The Valsalva maneuver can have negative physiological consequences, so even if you aren’t sure if you are breathing correctly, when lifting weights just make sure to breathe.

Rhythm

The fundamental breathing technique during weight-lifting exercises is to inhale on the stretch and exhale on exertion. If you are performing an overhead shoulder press, the exertion phase is when you press the bar overhead. For a bent-over row, the exertion phase is when you are pulling the bar into your upper abs. The stretch phase is the lowering aspect of the movement.

When I got done with my weights I worked on dinner.  Thai noodles are the bomb, and they go great with Tofu. I added a scrambled egg for a protein punch.

I had the Tofu already marinating overnight.

Marinate:

  • 1 Tablespoon Oil, I used an Asian Stir Fry Oil, but Sesame Oil works great also
  • 1/3 Cup Lime Juice
  • 1/3 Cup Soy Sauce

After draining the marinating liquids I sliced the tofu into 6 slices and placed them on a cookie sheet. I placed the cauliflower on another cookie sheet and seasoned with salt and pepper and drizzled with olive oil. Then just roast the cauliflower and the tofu on 450 degrees for 35 minutes, each on their own cookie sheet.

Okay, it was not until I took the final picture of this meal that I realized that all the food was the same color. Not the most lively picture, but it sure did taste good and filled me up.

Some-days I just need a piece of chocolate. So for dessert I had a piece of the Rum Chocolate Turtles that my friend sent me.

Question of the day: What’s your favorite type of chocolate?

Check Ya Later.

 

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Some-days you just wake up and know it’s going to be a good day. Today was one of those days, nothing amazing happened, it was just a good day.

Here’s whats in today’s bag.  For breakfast I have a Chobani pineapple yogurt that I mix with Kashi Go-Lean Crisp Cereal and a Fuji apple. For lunch, I have hummus and sprouts that I stuff  into whole wheat pita. I also have some pretzels and a mozzarella cheese stick.  Around 3 pm I like to have a snack so I always have a hard-boiled egg. I’m kinda bummed that I forgot to cut up a cucumber for my hummus sprout pita. That would have given it a good crunch.

When I got home from work I was greeted by these two crazy kids.

They know that when I get home from work, they get to eat, so I usually get a major greeting then they proceed to throw themselves at me, letting me know that they are hungry. If I ask them if there hungry they answer back with barks and whinny sounds. They also bounce around a bit to really let me know just how hungry they are.  I like to hang out with them as they eat, I have noticed that if I leave the room they just inhale the food. So I usually just do some stretching while they eat.  After they ate I grabbed my gear and we head up to my spare bedroom where my treadmill is and I got my walk on.

I love to walk and tonight’s Treadmill walk was Fantastic. I did 60 minutes on an incline. My normal routine on the treadmill is easy, I just walk at a fast pace and listen to great music on an incline. I usually do 10 minutes forward, then slow it down a bit and do 4 minutes backwards to target different muscles, I do this until I’ve completed 60 minutes. In the winter I rely on my treadmill, but in the Spring, Summer and Fall, I walk outdoors on trails. There’s nothing like a great walk outdoors.

Walking...

Most of the cardio I do is low impact workouts. I use the treadmill to walk, I use an elliptical machine to mimic running, I do throw in a few sets of jumping jacks, that’s about as high impact as I get.

Over the years of experimenting with different forms of exercise and always wanting to join in on friends runs and races, I tried running. I always wanted to like it as much as they did, but I couldn’t find the joy. I finally realized that I don’t enjoy running at all, I don’t like the way it makes me feel, it wipes me right out. I experienced pain in my knee and hip joints and I always seemed to be thinking about when it was going to end. I don’t do that with walking, I enjoy it, time fly’s by. I always feel energized and happy after a good walk. I keep my heart rate up and adjust my pace to ensure I’m getting a good heart healthy workout. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking running, I’m just admitting I’m not built for it, so I do what I love, I walk. I know there are runners out there that feel the same way about running as I do about walking.  So I think you should find what you love and what works for you and do it often.

Here are some of my favorite Walking Quotes:

  • A vigorous five-mile walk will do more good for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world.
  • One step at a time is good walking.
  • All truly great thoughts are conceived by walking.
Dinner did not require a recipe, I free styled this one, I just added what I wanted to pasta.
Linguine pasta with imitation crab, green olives and clams. I added a jar of pasta sauce and sprinkled Nutritional yeast on top. For the sides I had Dr. Praegers spinach shapes and a slice of garlic cheese toast. Sometimes the best meals are the one’s tossed together.
I really love these Seafood Snackers, they are great cold on salads and they are great on a hot meal like the pasta dish. Or I just eat them as a snack.
Nutritional Yeast, have you heard of it? I have been using it for a few months. I tried it to add more protein and B complex vitamins to my diet.
Here’s the deal on Nutritional Yeast:

Nutritional yeast is a deactivated yeast, usually Saccharomyces cerevisiae.[1] Nutritional yeast is produced by culturing the yeast with a mixture of sugarcane and beet molasses for a period of 7 days and then harvesting, washing, drying and packaging it. This is commercially available in the form of flakes or as a yellow powder similar in texture to cornmeal, and can be found in the bulk aisle of most natural food stores. It is popular with vegans and vegetarians and may be used as an ingredient in recipes or as a condiment.[2]

Nutritional Yeast Flakes

It is a source of protein and vitamins, especially the B-complex vitamins, and is a complete protein. It is also naturally low in fat and sodium and is free of sugardairy, and gluten. Some brands of nutritional yeast, though not all, are fortified with vitamin B12. When fortified, the vitamin B12 is produced separately (commonly Cyanocobalamin) and then added to the yeast because yeasts are fungi, whereas B12 is synthesized only by bacteria.[3][4][5]

Nutritional yeast has a strong flavor that is described as nutty, cheesy, or creamy, which makes it popular as an ingredient in cheese substitutes. It is often used by vegans in place of parmesan cheese. Another popular use is as a topping for popcorn. It can also be used in mashed and fried potatoes, as well as put into scrambled tofu or eggs. Some movie theaters offer it along with salt or cayenne pepper as a popcorn condiment.

I found it in the bulk aisle at Whole Foods, I love the flavor and I sprinkle it on eggs, pasta and tofu dishes. I once made a lite version of Mac and Cheese and used that instead of the cheese, it was good, not as creamy as real cheese but I was experimenting with it.

Eating healthy is a priority for me, I really try to eat as clean as I can, there are many amazing options out there now. I find so many really healthy frozen options by some great organic/healthy food companies. We all have days that we cannot find the time to make a great meal from scratch. Finding a great product or a healthy brand is easier than ever. So many companies realize that we want good food so they make it. I find great deals in the Health Food Section at my grocery store, plus I clip coupons and there are some great sites on the internet where you can get organic/health food coupons.  I got to http://www.organicdeals.com. They have all the printable coupon sites on the right hand side of the page. Resources are out there for us to take advantage of, so clip away to save and to eat healthy.

Question of the day: Do you take walk’s? Have you ever used Nutritional Yeast? 

Check Ya Later

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