Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Gym Goals Update

Back in June I laid out some of my goals for the gym and how I wanted to progress and get stronger.

You can read here that I wanted to be able to pull a 200lb deadlift, 145lb(approx body weight) back squat and be able to perform 10 chin-ups.

Over the course of close to two months, I was able to progress to DL a max of 185lbs for a 4x4 and squat 125lbs for a 4x4. The chin-ups are still only about 3 unassisted, but they have become "smoother", meaning doing those three doesn't just completely wipe me out!

I'm sure my 1 rep maxes are well above what my original goals are, but I never took days to just do 1 rep maxes...the school's gym has been under construction, so getting there before they close early everyday has been a challenge. 

I feel really good about my progression though, I didn't push myself hard enough in the beginning though, for the first month, I barely tried going up in weight at all! It wasn't until I started more progressive overload that I could see the rapid change in strength.

So I'm going to continue to achieve my goals and then move on to more challenges! It felt really good to go into the gym with a clear goal in mind, knowing that I needed to pull more or squat more because I was trying to get to a certain place. I think having concrete goals is a healthy thing for me.

ps- We no longer have internet at our apartment, so I will be quiet for a little while until I get moved to the new house in Northern Colorado :)

Saturday, August 11, 2012

It's Saturday!

Oh man! Am I glad it's the weekend!
This past week at work was fun, but most days were pretty hot!
And now I only have four more days of work left! Holy cow, this summer has gone by fast!
Next week, the boyfriend and I are going on a short backpacking trip!! I'm SUPER excited!
Last weekend we went on a great hike; bush-whacking our way up a mountain right next to a gorgeous waterfall :)

It was fantastic! And a great workout too! The hill we had to climb was pretty dang steep!

Yesterday at work we harvested veggies at my boss's house and she let us take home some of our findings!

  • Onions
  • Cucumbers
  • Yellow squash,
  • Garlic
  • Parsley
  • Tomatoes
  • Purple potatoes
Of course, I'm technically not suppose to eat the tomatoes and potatoes, but I told Westin that I'll make a big batch of homemade french fries for him :)

I've been having some fun in the kitchen lately, so I will get a couple recipes posted and an update on my lifting soon!

Have a grrrreat weekend!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Saturday Eats

My Saturday eats.

About a month ago, I started experimenting with Intermittent Fasting (you can read about IF here, here and here).
Today I fasted for 17hrs and felt really good! I wasn't even all that hungry when I broke the fast, but after I made that zucchini bread, it was almost impossible not to have a slice!

And dinner was incredible! Elk roast with homemade gravy (my new favorite meal!) and beets!! Look how pretty those beets are! Lets have another look at them.

Aren't they beautiful?!

Nature is so perfect :)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Coconut oatmeal bars

***This recipe has been updated and posted on my new site****

As I promised, I have an awesome recipe finally!
For the past couple weeks, I have been experimenting with a particular oatmeal bar recipe; I've been trying to imitate Bobo's Oat Bars. 
If you've never tried these puppies, go get some NOW! They are by far my favorite oatmeal bar and they are made right next to my hometown in Boulder, CO! It can't get much better than that! bars are thick and chewy and incredibly satisfying. They also have a ridiculous amount of flavors, so you can choose the right one for your mood. From lemon poppy-seed, to strawberry, to chocolate!

The problem is, Bobo's Bars are kind of expensive for a girl on a tight budget, so I've been trying to make my own!
And I think I've done a pretty good job at creating something similar.

So without further adieu, here are my Imitation Coconut Bobo Bars.

Here's what you need (makes 6 bars):
2 cups rolled oats
1/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
scant 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 scoop (12oz) vanilla protein powder (optional)
scant 2/3 cup brown rice syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil
3 Tbsp water (reduce to 2 Tbsp if not using protein)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
Mix all the ingredients together, starting with the dry and then adding the wet. Line an 8x8 baking dish with parchment paper (or oil VERY well) and press the mixture into the pan. Press it down very firmly! Bake for 25-30 minutes, but don't let the edges brown too much. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 10 minutes, then take another sheet of parchment paper and press the mixture down again.
It's important to press the bars so that they stick together better.
Let the bars cool and harden COMPLETELY before cutting and removing. Otherwise, you will have a crumbly, sticky mess. Then wrap each bar individually and store in the fridge for best results.

The signature taste of the Bobo Bars comes from the brown rice syrup, but if you prefer honey or agave, I'm sure either would work fine. With agave, you may need to reduce the amount because of the thinner texture.
Also, I choose to use coconut oil because I prefer it, but I'm sure any oil type would work, although they may contribute a different flavor.

These bars are really close to the real thing, although not quite as thick and there's maybe a little something missing, they are still very good and satisfying!


Picture post

Here's a quick picture preview of what's been going on the past couple weeks! I went home for the past week and left my computer behind, so even with having free time from work, I wasn't able to be busy writing posts.
Sorry about that!!

A Durango sunset made extra pretty by the smoke from the Weber fire. 

My mom's 4th of July cake!

Puppies galore! One of my friends currently has a litter of nine! 

No, I did not bring a puppy home, sadly. 

Hopefully by tomorrow I will have a post about some grrrreat oatmeal bars that I made!

Have a great day!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

ZWOW and gym goals

It's another beautiful Saturday morning in Colorado! We actually have some clouds for the first time in two weeks! But it would probably be too much to ask for some rain...

This morning I woke up and busted out a killer workout from Zuzana Light.

Her ZWOW #22 was intense! But I'm SO proud to say that I beat her time and got 15:35!
I felt pretty awesome after realizing I had beat her time, cause she's so fit! But I just wish my abs looked like hers... :)

I did finally cave and paid for a summer membership at the college's gym. They have strange hours and it will be a bit of a squeeze getting there after work and they aren't open on the weekends, unfortunately, but I'm glad I did it.

Right now my goals are that by the time I move to Fort Collins in late August, I would like to be able to deadlift at least 200lb, squat my body weight (140lb) and do 10 unassisted chin-ups.

Right now I can deadlift just above my body weight (145lb) and squat about 105lb. As I said before, I can do 2-3 unassisted chin-ups, but they aren't very good form, so I will need to work on that too.

I feel it's good to get my goals written down, so I can judge my progress and in the end see if I set my standards too high or too low.

I have about two months and one week to make that progression and I think with lifting at least four times a week, I will be able to gain quite a bit of strength and muscle.

Wish me luck!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Summer Spelt Pasta Salad

This weekend has been relaxing, I got to spend a lot of time cooking....I made an elk roast, whole wheat tortillas, hummus, pasta salad and that's just what I made for the upcoming week! I've been in the kitchen a lot! Which always makes me really happy :)
I've also been able to read quite a bit and I even sneaked into the gym the other day!!

It made me realize I'm a true gym rat at heart and will probably have to get a membership somewhere soon....
It just felt so good to deadlift again and I've been working on chin ups, so it was nice to actually have a real bar to do that on! I was successfully able to do four on my own and then about 16 more assisted. That's major progress for me! I'm gonna have to get a video of a couple soon, so I can prove to the world!

....And my back is still sore from it ;)

Okay, on to the yummy pasta salad.

Here's what you need:

2 cups spelt penne pasta (or whichever you prefer)
2 carrots, diced
1 medium zucchini, quartered
about 4 oz cheddar cheese (I used 2% mild), cubed
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed (or whichever you like best)

2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp oil
1/2 tsp parsley flakes (I'm sure fresh would be amazing!)
dash of black pepper and garlic powder

Cook the pasta according to directions so that it's al dente, drain and let cool. I like to rinse mine in cold water to immediately stop the cooking process and speed up the preparation. While the pasta cools, mix together the dressing ingredients and then throw it all in a large bowl and mix until it's all covered with dressing.

I enjoyed mine with some iced blueberry tea :)

I really liked the variety of textures, from the crunchy veggies and then the softer pasta and beans.
Spelt pasta has a bit more protein than other pasta varieties and I think tastes better than whole wheat pasta! The beans add some extra fiber, more protein and a bit of iron. All good things to have in an active body! 

The dressing was not very strong for the amount of salad that it makes (about 4 servings), but I don't like it very heavy, so increase your amounts if you want to taste it more.
You could also add some chicken breast or salami to this recipe if you wanted some more protein. I personally would have added salami or summer sausage because of the flavors.


Here's a picture of beautiful Vallecito Reservoir (about 20 miles away from here) and my friend's puppy Boba Fett :)