Friday, January 17, 2014

Spartan Race Giveaway Winner and 15% off coupon code for EVERYONE else!


And the winner is....
@RunBeeRun1968!

CONGRATULATIONS!!

I will also contact you via Twitter and will DM you you're coupon code for your FREE RACE ENTRY!

 I hope you use it to run the Sacramento Super like you mentioned in your comment :)
Keep us posted!

For EVERYONE ELSE that wants to register for a U.S. Spartan Race in 2014, you win too.....here is a link where you can find a 15% off coupon code!!

I hope that you all have a great weekend - I'll be back to fill you in on my WODs at some point ;)

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Hi. My name is Sammy and I...{LOVE weddings!} #ttt

Did you enter my Spartan Race giveaway yet??
Giveaway is open until Friday at 8:00am EST!

My #thoughtsthingsthursday is very simple today!  My husband's best friend - who has actually been a close family friend of mine since birth!! - is getting married this weekend!  My husband is his best man and I am just so excited!!

(source)
I.LOVE.WEDDINGS!! I love everything about them!  They make me giddy - like an 8-year-old little girl.  I love getting all dressed up, having an adult-night-out, dancing, eating, drinking!  I grin the biggest smile during the entire ceremony, I just can't help it!! At the last wedding we went to I swear I started thinking...why am I such a dork - it's not even my wedding - why am I so emotional....happy and excited and nervous lol

I guess it's what the wedding signifies that really gets me!  You are committing your life to another person...heavy heavy stuff!  It's romantic and special and sweet!! How can you not be so happy when you see 2 people that are so happy??

Anyway, I'll fill you in on this weekend after it happens (lol) and I'll be sure to post some pics of us all dolled up since, let's be honest, that doesn't happen all that often!!

Before I go I MUST fill you in on last night's dinner...

So I was catching up on Tuesday's episode of the Biggest Loser Wednesday morning!  {I love that show!}  Bob made these amazing Mexican Turkey Frittatas, they looked so easy and delicious, I went straight to the BL website to get the recipe for dinner!!

I loosely followed their recipe.  Here's my simply-put version....

1. Brown up some ground turkey breast in a smidge of vegetable oil (I used chicken breast instead of turkey because that's what I had!)

2. Saute - on a medium heat - diced peppers, onions and mushrooms for about 5 minutes or so.

3. Whisk together 4 eggs, 3/4 cup of liquid egg whites and 1/4 cup of skim milk

4. Mix the cooked meat and vegetables into the egg/milk mixture, then add 1 cup of shredded Mexican cheese and stir together.  Add S&P.

5. Spoon into a 12-count cupcake tin (that you lightly coated with non-stick cooking spray).  Fill each cupcake spot about 3/4 of the way full.  Bake in a 350*F oven for approximately 20-23 minutes.

6. Bake until they are slightly brown on top and the eggs are set!

7. ENJOY!!
I served ours with some all-natural applesauce straight from the fridge so it was nice and cool!  It was SERIOUSLY DELICIOUS!!!!!

We ate about half or so and then I put the rest in the freezer.  I love that I have them available for a quick, easy and HEALTHY snack, for breakfast, lunch or dinner!!!!! :)

What do you make - that is super easy and healthy - that can be easily frozen and enjoyed at any time of day? 
Are you like me...do you LOVE weddings?

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Burpees with a side of burpees, please!

Make 2014 your year to become SPARTAN Strong!! 
[I AM!!]
Wanna win a FREE RACE ENTRY TO ANY 2014 U.S. SPARTAN RACE??

Monday 
As per usual these days...Monday started with a 2 mile run (I should have that on a loop I say it so often!). It's a great route that I do and it was nice and cool-ish this morning (well, cool for us anyway! Lol) so it was a very good run! 


For my strength workout I did burpees.....100 of them!  Not all at one time - 15, then 12, then 15, you get the idea - I was home doing other things so every few minutes I went back to do a dozen or so of them. Before I knew it, I was done with the 100!

50 competition burpees
50 burpees (with push-up)

After my big reveal yesterday - I'm doing a Spartan Race!! - I decided to incorporate more burpees into my workouts!  The Spartan website had 2 great blog posts (see here and here!) on how awesome 'the burpee' is for you so I figure it will really benefit me in training for the upcoming race!!

Tuesday
I went to the gym this morning to do some interval/sprints. I had planned to do shorter sprints (like 10-30 seconds each) but I ended up doing minute-long sprints. I actually - more or less - ran 1 minute at 7.0mph, 1 minute at 8.0mph and then walked 1 minute at 4.0mph. It made the 18:40 that it took for me to do 2 miles go by pretty quickly!!

I then came home to do some strength training. 2 body weight exercises that work the whole body - from your shoulders down to your calves and everything in between...check it out:


I hope everyone's having a great week!! I'm ready for it to hurry up and be the weekend already (well duh! lol) because we have big plans that I'll tell you about in tomorrow's #thoughtsthingsthursday post!

What do you think - could you do 100 burpees as a workout??

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Are you SPARTAN Strong? {Announcement & Giveaway!!}


Hi guys!!  Big post today - an exciting announcement and a very exciting giveaway!  Let's get to it.....

It all started last month.  I was contacted by Dan from Spartan Race about promoting an upcoming Race that they're having in Tampa, Florida.  From their website:


Reebok Spartan Race presents the Special Ops Spartan Race Tampa Sprint at the Raymond James Stadium on Saturday February 15th with charity proceeds benefiting the USSOCOM Care Coalition. This Special Ops Spartan Sprint will be a mix of mud and gnarly outdoor obstacles combined with the challenge of the signature Spartan stadium obstacles all with maneuvers and strategy created by Special Ops Forces. Each finisher will receive a unique Special Ops Spartan Sprint Medal with bragging rights of accomplishing the most unique Spartan event. 


Pretty cool, right?  

Let me rewind a minute.....I should've really led by saying that one of the biggest reasons that I agreed to post about this race was because Dan also mentioned that, in return for the shout out, I would get to do a giveaway for a FREE Spartan Race entry for any U.S. 2014 race on my blog and that REALLY peaked my interest!  I love doing giveaways, but I vowed to only do them for things that I use/like/do myself (hence my last giveaway was for Vitatops!!).  So, before responding to Dan, I wanted to see exactly what this "Spartan Race" was all about....


I had heard of the Spartan Race before but I didn't know much about it.  I figured it was like an endurance, mud run with crazy obstacles - a fun but hard but awesome race.  And after checking out some of the videos on their website, I was hooked - I literally looked at my husband and exclaimed, I HAVE to do this!!!! (Here comes my big announcement....)

Does this look awesome or does this look awesome?

I am ECSTATIC to report that:

I SIGNED UP TO RUN MY FIRST EVER SPARTAN RACE IN APRIL!!

My sister is running it with me and we could not be more excited!  We are doing a Spartan "sprint", which covers approximately 3 miles and includes a dozen or so obstacle courses!

This is big...HUGE....for me because this is totally pushing myself out of my comfort zone!!!  I do my short runs, I hit my at-home strength training workouts hard, I go to Orange Theory and bust my a**!  But I have never done anything like this before!!

Need I remind you of my "non-resolution" theory on resolutions.....THERE'S NO TIME LIKE THE PRESENT!

Well this is me taking that to heart!  I encourage all of you, my friends, to do something that scares you (Roni talks about this all the time!).  I challenge you to join me - find something that you've never done, that you want so badly to do, and let's conquer it together!!

To enter the giveaway.....

Head over to the Spartan website and see when this awesome race is coming to your area.  

If you're up for the challenge, leave a comment on this post about which race you'd want to run and YOUR COMMENT will be your entry into the giveaway!!  Plain and simple!!

Please only enter the giveaway if you are certain you will be able to use it!  My hope is that whoever wins this giveaway heads straight over to the Spartan website to sign up right after I send them their promo code!!
(This giveaway is valued at over $100 - so I really want someone to use it!!!  
WOO HOO!)

Only 1 comment/entry per person.  

This giveaway is open to anyone who is planning to run a Spartan Race in the U.S. in 2014, regardless of where you actually live!)

You will have until Friday, January 17, 2014 at 8:00am EST to enter the giveaway.  I will then pick a random winner using random.org!  I will announce the winner in a post on Friday January 17!

And don't be discouraged if you don't win!! When I announce the winner in Friday's post I will also include a discount code for 15% off any Spartan Race for everyone to use!!  So, in a sense, EVERYONE WINS! :)

[[Full Disclosure: I was given 2 free Spartan Race entries - one for myself and one for a giveaway on this blog.  That is the only compensation that I was given in exchange for writing this post.  This is not a sponsored post.  This post is my feelings and opinions, as always.]]

Good luck and I can't to see who's ready to take the leap with me!!!!!!!!!

Have you ever done a Spartan Race??

Monday, January 13, 2014

Weekend WODs

I hope everyone had a great weekend!  Ours was BUSY, but very good!  Today will be a round-up of my 3 great WODs from this weekend!

Friday
I was going to make Friday a rest day - but I got a little burst of energy after I put the boys to bed so I ran with it (not literally lol).

A simple, body weight routine to burn out the shoulder!


Saturday 
I started the day with a speedy 2-miler!


Now, as much as I love/encourage incorporating multiple body parts into each strength exercise (for example: squat + shoulder press) to burn the most calories, today I did just the opposite!  I had already done my 'cardio' so I focused on my arms, and it was a quick but good arm workout!  Check it out...


Sunday
Sunday started with another fast 2-miler!


Then I did some strength exercises at home and it was a GOOD one! {{as I pat myself on the back}}  I made a big decision yesterday - that I'll tell you about tomorrow (along with Peace, Love and Ice Cream's 2nd giveaway!!) - so this workout is kind of an 'homage' to this exciting news!!  I actually briefly mentioned the giveaway the other day.....I'm sure this all probably sounds totally sketchy and confusing but I promise it will all make sense tomorrow!  

So check out this simple but not so easy workout from Sunday....you guys know I love a good burpee! ;)


I only had time for 1 round and even that was enough to get in a good sweat!

So I'll be back tomorrow with my exciting news and a GREAT giveaway!! STAY TUNED!

Did you guys do any great workouts this weekend??

Friday, January 10, 2014

It's the weekend!!!

I love Friday nights!! What's not to love, right??  It's the very beginning of the weekend - a time for fun, family and friends!! 

Our weekend will consist of all 3 of those things!  We have 2 (kid) birthday parties, dinner out with friends (sans-kids so we can actually have a conversation!) and our pup has to go to the vet - which to my kids is like a fun field trip!

Today I did a quick WOD so here's a quick recap...5 rounds of 15 push-ups + 90 second plank....just working on getting that ever-sought-after V shape!! ;)

I'm not sure if I'll have a new post up until Monday but next week is sure to bring some fun....in great part because of a VERY exciting giveaway that I'll be doing!! Let me give you a little teaser....

Are you looking for an awesome race for 2014? 
Do you want to challenge yourself like you've never been challenged before?  
Wanna get down and dirty (like really dirty!)?  

See you guys next week for all the deets!!

One more thing before I go. I tried the Skratch Exercise Hydration Mixes - from my Secret Santa blogger gift exchange - and I never filled you guys in!

I am a water girl - all water, all the time!  I don't need anything fancy added to drink water because, honestly, I like it just the way it is - plain, crisp and refreshing!  And I don't usually like the taste of "flavored" water. 

I tried both the pineapple and the orange and I'm happy to report that I was pleasantly surprised.  They were both pretty good. The taste was very subtle; there was a very slight hint of the flavor in the background but it wasn't an overpowering, fake fruity taste. It was actually quite delicious!  If you're looking for some help in drinking more water I would definitely suggest you try them!!

Do you drink flavored water??
Do you drink enough water?

Happy Weekend folks!!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Hi. My name is Sammy and I...{want to tell you ALL ABOUT Orange Theory!} #ttt

Hey, Hey, Hey!!

Thursday night already? Wow!  It's almost the weekend and I still feel like I'm playing catch-up from the holidays! After New Year's there's a bit of a lull, don't you think?? After Thanksgiving it was Hanukkah, then Christmas, then New Year's - there was always something right around the corner! Now it's the beginning of the year and what - almost Valentine's Day? Lol  (The stores are already totally stocked with candy and cards and presents - all things pink and red - crazy!)

So I wanted to dedicate a post to one of my favorite things...Orange Theory!  I talk about Orange Theory all.the.time!  I try to go at least once a week, sometimes twice, and I blog about it every time. It is such a great, kick butt workout and I love having it in my regular rotation!

(source)
I went this Tuesday so I decided to detail the entire workout.

At our studio, the first Tuesday of the month is called Tornado Tuesday!  Every class that day is run the same way - as a tornado, literally!!!!  You spend the whole time switching from one exercise to the next every.single.minute!  Let me explain.....

There are 3 main sections at the Orange Theory gym - the weight room, the rowing machines and the treadmills. During every class you utilize all 3 areas - and how!!

During the Tornado you do 9 total rounds - and each round consists of 1 minute on the treadmill, 1 minute on the rowing machine and 1 minute doing a specific strength training exercise (it changes each round). There is about a 20 second transition period from one exercise to the next, and the goal is to go "all out" during each minute....to run as fast as you can, to row as quick as you can, to do as many reps as you can....IT IS EXHAUSTING!!!

It is so fast paced and interesting that, before you know it, it's over!

These are my stats for Tuesday's class:


Everyone wears a heart rate monitor and your heart rate, your calories burned and your current "zone" are portrayed on big tv screens for all to see!  You aren't competing against anyone (beside yourself!), but it's cool to see how everyone in the class is doing!

(source)
The goal during each OT class - Tornado included - is to spend 25-35 minutes "in the green zone" and 12-20 minutes "in the orange zone".  The orange zone is what leads to the EPOC, or afterburn effect, which translates to calories being burned 24-36 hours after the workout. 

(source)
I'm not so caught up in all of that - although I do love numbers - I do it because it makes me feel strong and powerful!  And if I just so happen to burn 500+ calories then so be it :)

During this specific Tornado the rowing sections were simple...row at an "all out pace" AKA as fast as you can - so I made a goal for myself to try to row at least 250 meters during each 1-minute session...and I think I succeeded (if even just by 10 meters or so) each round!

(source)

In the weight room we did 9 different exercises, each for 1 minute each round.  Some of the exercises: Romanian dead lifts, push-ups, burpees, SBT muscle-ups....great total body exercises!

(source)
The treadmill portion was very different from other Tornados that I've been to...we varied the incline each round anywhere from 0% to 15%, while running as fast as possible!  At one point we were doing over 8mph at a 15% incline!  Even for a minute that is some seriously hard stuff!

(source)

Each class ends with a few minutes of stretching!  And a big sigh of relief that it's over :)

So I hope you guys enjoyed this very detailed description of one of my favorite things!!

Before I go here's a recap of a few other WODs....

As for Wednesday's workout, I did a great 15 min HIIT Bender routine, Full Body Fat Burn.  Every time I turned around it was another set of burpees or froggers or high knees...torture - in a great way!

I topped it off with my 4 minute plank routine (who doesn't have 4 minutes?!?)


Today I started the day with a 20 minute run on the treadmill - which totally made me realize that I am MUCH more comfortable running outside!


Later in the day I did the latest Bender workout, Cardio Belly Fat Burner....AMAZING!! I love that Melissa is incorporating all of these cardio-based strength moves (hello lunge jump, burpees, squat jumps, oh the list goes on!) - such a great full body workout!!!

Check out my new shirt....

(It's backward but you get the drift!)

I may not be a distance runner, but these 2-3 miles really make me feel good....and so does wearing this new shirt!

Has anyone ever tried Orange Theory??
Does this post TOTALLY make you want to run to one to take a class right.now??? ;)

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Bloglovin


HEY guys!

I'm just popping in to let you know that I have been spending most of my blogging time today getting my act together on Bloglovin!  I'm going to use it exclusively (I think!) as my blog reader so I've been moving my list of all of the blogs that I follow over there!!  Why not, right?

My only question.....do the statistics on Google Analytics get screwed up because the people that read via Bloglovin don't get counted on Analytics?  Just curious!!

Be back later (or tomorrow am) with a full recap of my latest Orange Theory workout - ohhhh you know you're excited!! :)

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

How I Stayed Active During the Holidays #sweatpink

Hi guys ~ I have almost 2 weeks of workouts to fill you in on.  I'm excited for you to see them because most were actually really good routines, although I share with you the good, the bad, the ugly regardless!! :)

Wednesday - 12/25 (Merry Christmas!)

I woke up and set out for a run - a fast run!  2.5 miles, which is a smidge more than I usually do, and it felt great.


I came home and had a few extra minutes so I did this great 4 minute plank routine - who doesn't have 4 minutes???


As you can probably tell by now I love "planking"!  People think that crunches and sit-ups are the only way to work your abs.  SO NOT TRUE!!!  Yes they are a great addition to a workout, but there are so many other options to really work your whole core.  And the plank is just a GREAT (full body) exercise that really targets your entire core!!

Then we spent the rest of the day walking around the zoo!!  We probably covered at least a mile on foot!!

Thursday - 12/26
I woke up and did another run.

I also have a GREAT new strength workout for you!!!!


Friday 12/27
I went to go for another run - but I realized RIGHT BEFORE I started that the jogging stroller's tire was blown out!  I shoved it in the trunk (to drop it at the bike shop) and pushed my older son in the regular stroller for 1 mile.  I literally couldn't.push.it.another.minute!!!  It was really hard...it made me realize how much easier it is when I use the proper, jogging stroller!


Then to get in a bit more cardio I did a 10-minute jump rope routine....90 seconds work/30 seconds rest (so I did 5 rounds).  It was quick but good!

Saturday 12/28
Saturday was a very active day!  

It started with an Orange Theory class - I'm leaving out all of the details today, but I will say that I felt good after class...we did a lot of strength training.  I wasn't dripping sweat like I usually am, though, so when I got home I ran a quick mile to top off my workout!

We also went ice skating!!!! My 4 year old LOVES to ice skate (out of the norm for a Florida-boy!) and he's really good at it!  We had an awesome time and probably spent a good 45 minutes skating around!!  Family Time + Workout + Fun = A Great Day!!




Sunday - 12/29
Sunday was a rest day!  You know how I hate to take rest days but I know that I need them and they're good for me, and to be honest I was super busy and then too tired to squeeze something in the evening! #truth

Monday - 12/30
I went for a 2 miler Monday morning.


I then did my AMAZING "Planking Your Way to Awesome Abs" workout - seriously a core killer!!  (That BONUS 60 second plank is really the cherry on top of this great workout!)


Tuesday - 12/31
I still can't believe it's NYE day - tomorrow is 2014!!!!!!!

To help ring in the new year - and burn some of those calories that I knew I'd be consuming later! - I came up with this great Keep It Simple Silly (KISS) New Year's Eve workout.  Check out the rep count ;)

I did 2 rounds but feel free to continue on if you feel up to it!!


Wednesday - 1/1
Happy New Year folks!!!

Like a fool I signed up for a morning Orange Theory class today!  Granted I wasn't 'hungover' (although I did have my fair share of drinks last night!) and I was asleep long before the ball dropped, I was tired and not in the mood for an all-out OT workout first thing!  

Needless to say, a few minutes into it I was stoked that I was there and it ended up being a SUPER workout - I was THRILLED when it was over....I did it! lol



Thursday - 1/2
Back to the jump rope.....and I wanted to hit it hard today because I know that I could push myself more.  If I can do 1 minute or 2 minutes straight of jumping rope, I could theoretically do 3 or 4 or even 5 minutes, over and over and over again!  So I did!



Then I did the Bonus Plank Routine 2.0 from the week prior (that I mentioned above!)  It's such a good workout-finisher!


Friday - 1/3
My hamstrings were SO sore from Wednesday's Orange Theory class.  So I did my first Bender video in a long time.....I did the Total Tummy Toning Workout and it was great!  A really great core routine!!

Then I did a quick, upper body routine....

5 Rounds of Super Set: 10 curls, 10 hammer curls, 10 shoulder press, 80 shoulder flutters
5 Rounds: 10 push-ups

Saturday - 1/4
I did a 2 mile run...



I followed that up with a quick lower body routine of squats, squat pulses and Romanian deadlifts with 11 lb dumbbells.

Sunday - 1/5
I ran 3 miles which is the longest I've run in a long time!  And it felt good :)



Monday - 1/6
Back-to-back Bender workouts!  30 minutes of serious cardio and strength training - I was SWEATING!!!  First I did the Day 1: Leg and Belly Blast, then, as if my legs weren't exhausted enough, I did the Day 30: 15 Minute Cardio HIIT and Body Sculpt.  The fact that we repeated high knees, froggers and mountain climbers THREE times almost killed me ;)  It was one of the BEST Bender workouts I've had!!

I love working out - I love the way that it makes me feel - and I'm really proud of myself for staying so active (and running a lot!) during the holidays!

Were you active during the holidays?
If you weren't, are you coming back full-force this month??

Monday, January 6, 2014

Lately...

Hi friends!!!!

Happy, Healthy New Year to ALL of you!!  2014 really crept up on us, didn't it? I sure feel like it did!

Now you know how I feel about Resolutions....but I do hope that you all have goals and aspirations for the months ahead - whether physical, emotional, mental, about your work or your family, or yourself! - and that you do everything in your power to accomplish them!!

There's a great quote that's been floating around recently.....

(source)
Makes total sense!

These 2 weeks off felt like they flew by and lingered on at the same time!  I'm excited to get back to our routine (including school for my older one!).  I am making today's post a "Lately...." post, which I very rarely do, but I have a list of things that I want to fill you in on!  

I also have a TON of WODs to tell you about - I stayed very active during the holidays! - but I decided to do a super long post on that and it will be up tomorrow!

Without further ado,
Lately......
  • I've been doing a decent amount of Running!
    • I stick to only 2-3 miles, but I've been pretty consistent with it during the last couple of weeks....and I've been pretty fast (for me!) - you'll see in tomorrow's WOD post!
  • I've been drinking Protein Shakes!
    • I've been having a protein shake almost every day - after every workout!!  I have the recipe down pat and it's deeeeelicious!!  I rarely switch it up because I like it so much!  It's light (especially when I make it with water rather than milk) and it's refreshing because of the berries!
  • I've been including Ground Flax Seeds in my diet!
    • As you can see above, I have been putting 2 Tbsp of ground flax seeds in every shake!  I know the health benefits of flax are extensive so I will continue putting them in - even though I don't feel any different, you can't even taste them so why not!?
  • I have a Monthly Weigh In to update you on.
    • As of a month ago I think I'm up about 1.5 lbs.  I know it's mostly water weight and "too much food consumption" weight but I thoroughly enjoyed myself this month and I.am.not.sorry!!  {It's really not that bad considering it was the holidays!!}
    • Just staying accountable!
  • I've been eating the breakfast of champions, VitaTops! :)
    • It should come as no surprise since you all know that I LOVE the Vitalicious products - but I'm having a serious love affair with my current breakfast: the Chocolate Chip VitaTop + chunky peanut butter (and/or Nutella!).  Such a GREAT way to start your morning!!
    • Remember to visit Vitalicious and enter coupon code WBLQTQ3Y4PT
      at checkout to recieve 10% OFF your order!!
  • I had a great experience ordering from Easy Canvas Prints!
    • I was contacted last month by Stephanie (via Jessie Love to Run - Thanks Jessie!) over at www.easycanvasprints.com offering me a free 8x10 canvas, in return for an honest, only-my-true-feelings, not-compensated-in-any-other-way review about it on my blog.....so I jumped at the chance.  I love ordering personalized canvases for family and friends (and myself!) so I was excited to try out a new site!  
    • I am pleased to report that I had a wonderful experience!  Their website is super easy to navigate ("easy" IS in their name!), the "upload a picture" process was painless, the different options (wrap thickness, canvas colors) were simple to understand with prices clearly stated, and my canvas came within a week - even during the holidays!
    • The print is clear and the colors pop - it is very true to the photo that I uploaded in terms of the color and clarity!
    • I was very happy with my experience at Easy Canvas Prints and I would definitely (a) use them again and (b) recommend them to my friends!
    • Because Stephanie is SO nice (and generous!) she gave me some Coupon Codes to pass along to you guys - including a 50% off a canvas print and a BOGO free offer, both of which include free shipping!!
    • I haven't used their other sites, Build A Sign or Allied Shirts, but I snooped around and they have some pretty cool stuff!!  I love custom anything! :)
So what have you guys been up to? 
Are you ready to get "back to reality"??