• Fitness

    How to Lose Belly Fat

    One thing which is repeated in many infomercials for Ab Machines is how they’re supposed to give you a better abs workout which will help you to lose stomach fat.

    It’s impossible to burn fat from a specific body part because spot reduction is impossible. We lose fat from our entire body regardless of which body part we exercise. Therefore, the key is to do the most intensive and fat burning workouts and not to worry about doing abs exercises.

    Fat Loss spot reduction is one of the most common exercise myths and something which marketers exploit.

    To really burn off belly fat you need to:

    1. Do intensive, fat burning cardio workouts.
    2. Ride a Spin Bike.
    3. Do full body weight training workouts.
    4. Eat right.

    The Ab Circle Pro provides you with a good cardio experience and it helps you eat better with the diet manual provided.

    Ab Circle Features:

    • Made with gym quality steel that’s built to last a lifetime!
    • Folds for easy storage under the bed or in the closet!
    • Three levels of resistance so it’s perfect for any fitness level!
    • Unique patent pending Friction Free Track gets you off the floor!

     …

  • Recipe

    Banana Bundt Cake

    Don’t let the sharp edges of this baby fool you. She is one soft and smooth lady. Delicate, like a flower. A banana scented flower. Is that real? Now, it is.

    This cake is like banana bread’s wifey. A little lighter made up of the same molecules, but just as fast. You can actually use this same batter for muffins (the kids!) and not skip a beat.

    Now, like every hot wifey, this baby needs some bling. Enter maple glaze. OOOOOOh yeah!

    Recipe for Banana Bundt Cake with Maple Glaze

    2 1/2 cups flour
    2 tablespoons baking powder
    pinch of salt
    1/2 cup unsalted butter
    2 cups white sugar
    1/4 cup maple syrup
    2 eggs
    2 tablespoons vanilla extract
    4 ripe bananas, mashed
    2/3 cup buttermilk
    1/2 cup chopped walnuts

    Glaze:

    1/2 cup powdered sugar
    1 tablespoon maple syrup
    whisk together with a fork to combine

    For the cake:

    Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl and set aside. Beat butter and sugar until fluffy, slowly adding in the maple syrup and vanilla. Add eggs one at a time until thoroughly mixed. Add in bananas until they are nice and smashed! Alternate in buttermilk and flour mixture, ending with the flour. Gently fold in the walnuts. Pour into a greased bundt pan and bake at 350F for about 45 minutes, or until toothpick comes clean.

    Once the cake has cooled mostly, invert it onto a plate and drizzle with maple glaze. And. AND. Don’t forget to treat it like a lady.…

  • Recipe

    Kohlrabi Fries

    So, remember how I was at a total loss on what to do with this kohlrabi I inherited? Well, with a little research and chili powder, I did something that’s totally confusing my guilt meter. I made this vegetable into the crispiest oven fries ever.

    Yep. This cabbage guy = french fries. I know.

    I am a super fan of oven baked sweet potato fries and always try to persuade myself that they are better for you than regular fries. I know that they are, sort of… but, I’m not completely convinced. THIS gets me.

    Recipe for Kohlrabi Fries

    1 large kohlrabi (you can find these easily at the grocery store, I promise!)
    1/2 tsp sea salt
    1 tablespoon vegetable oil
    1/4 tsp chili powder
    dash of black pepper

    Preheat oven to 425F. Peel the leaves off your kohlrabi, wash, and cut into small, fry-sized wedges. Toss with rest of ingredients and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until very golden brown and crispy.

    Serve with spicy ketchup or a herb yogurt dressing. YOU’RE WELCOME!…

  • Recipe

    Chipotle Pumpkin Soup

    So, now we’ve got a ton of pumpkin puree. What are we gonna do? Ya gotta use it or lose it! Seriously, that much is gonna get nasty in your fridge if you don’t get on it sooner or later.

    If you think all you can do with pumpkin puree is make a pie (awesome, but snooze fest for the sake of this blog), you’re wrong! We made an amazing chipotle pumpkin soup that is smoky and spicy AND sweet. A winner combination, if you ask me.

    Recipe for Chipotle Pumpkin Soup

    • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
    • 1 small yellow onion, diced
    • 2 chiles in adobo, roughly chopped
    • 1 tablespoon cumin
    • 5 cups pumpkin puree
    • 2 cups vegetable stock
    • 1 cup heavy cream
    • nonfat yogurt (or sour cream) for serving

    Sautee garlic and onion in bottom of a large soup pot until softened and fragrant. Add chiles and cumin and toss to combine. Add puree, stock, and cream and blend with immersion blender (or transfer to a regular blender in batches and then back into the pot). Cover and let simmer on low for twenty minutes or so before scooping into dishes and serving with a drizzle of yogurt.

    Are you daring enough to eat this spicy pumpkin recipe?? Come on, you know you are.…

  • Fitness

    Are There Any Injuries To Be Wary Of On The Treadmill?


    “Falling off the treadmill,” Sulaver says. “I’ve seen it happen numerous times, and it’s not pretty.” To prevent a slip, focus on your run instead of the television. “The biggest problem I see with treadmill training is that people hop on a treadmill and they want to zone out,” he says. “They don’t want to be involved in the workout—they want to forget about it, and let it happen without even being aware of it.” Instead of zoning out, aim to be very engaged in your workouts across the board.

    As for shin splits? Sulaver doesn’t believe treadmills alone cause them, but says if you’re shin-splint-prone it’s important to increase both intensity and volume of training gradually. “It’s also important to take care of your shins pre- and post-workout, which means stretching and soft-tissue exercises,” he says. “If it gets very bad, you may need to cross-train a bit until the pain and inflammation is more manageable.”

    What Can I Do To Combat Boredom?

    Sulaver recommends using the specifics of the best treadmills to do interval work, which increases the engagement of both your mind and body. “If you can periodize your treadmill training, just like you periodize all of your other training, you will make more progress,” he says. What follows is a four-week treadmill sprint workout designed by Sulaver that gets harder as the weeks progress. Perform this sprint workout twice a week for maximum results. Start each workout with a warmup of dynamic stretching or using a foam roller, and end each workout with a cool-down of static stretching.

    Week one: sprint for 20 seconds, rest for 40 seconds; repeat this six times in a row. Take a three-minute rest. Complete the sprinting series three times total.
    Week two: sprint for 20 seconds, rest for 40 seconds; repeat this eight times in a row. Take a three-minute rest. Complete the sprinting series three times total.
    Week three: sprint for 25 seconds, rest for 35 seconds; repeat this 10 times in a row. Take a three-minute rest. Complete the sprinting series two times total.
    Week four: sprint for 30 seconds, rest for 30 seconds; repeat 12 times. Take a three-minute rest. Complete the sprinting series two times total.…

  • Food

    Feelin’ Good

    I know this might seem a little out of nowhere, but I’m on VACATION!! I hopped on a plane Saturday afternoon in Raleigh and have been in Siesta Key, Florida with my family. It’s been almost five months since I’ve seen my parents and brothers and I am ecstatic to be sharing meals and living quarters with them.

    BUT, of course, one of my favorite parts about beach vacations is the food. We make sure to hit up all of our favorite seafood restaurants we’ve been frequenting for years, but my mom also always loads the fridge up with tons of fruit and salad. Maybe it’s the whole being in a bikini all day thing, but it just seems so much more fun to eat light and fresh when you’re on vacation.

    One of the easiest things you can do to detox a little bit is to drink warm lemon water first thing in the morning. Not only does it help with digestion, but also has a long list of other body boosting properties. The vitamin C boost helps you fight germs (like airport germs during cold season- yuck) but also makes your skin look healthier and more vibrant. Stress quickly depletes your vitamin C stock, so replenishing it helps your body fight stress and everything that comes along with it, like high blood pressure and dull skin. It’s also been proven that the high acidity of warm lemon water helps knock down the formation of kidney stones.

    While I only do this for a week every now and then, I always seem to enjoy the morning ritual and find it pretty calming. Besides, with a benefits list like this, how can you not feel good about what you’re doing?

    What do you do on vacation that changes up your eating or health habits?…

  • Recipe

    Chicken Apple Walnut Ravioli

    With the weather getting colder and my sniffles getting sniffly-er, it seems all I want to do is spend time over the stove. Maybe it’s the radiating warmth, or possibly my body trying to nourish itself, that keeps me making hearty meals. Regardless, this beautiful recipe was born last night.

    Chicken, Apple, and Walnut Ravioli in a Brown Butter Cream Sauce.

    I know, a mouthful. But, I promise you- that is one happy mouth.

    Recipe for Chicken Apple Walnut Ravioli in Brown Butter Cream Sauce
    1 recipe fresh pasta via food and wine

    for filling

    • 3 medium apples, diced
    • 1 lb ground chicken
    • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
    • 3 tablespoons fresh, chopped sage

    for sauce

    • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (or use salted and omit to add later)
    • 1/2 cup cream

    Extras

    • 1 cup shredded Parmigiano Reggiano
    • lemon wedges, for garnish

    Filling:

    Sautee apples in the large skillet over medium heat. When softened, add chicken. Once the chicken is cooked thoroughly, add walnuts and sage. Toss and keep on heat for another few minutes to release oils in nuts and aroma of sage. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

    Assembly:

    Scoop tablespoon sized portions of filling into thinly rolled pasta dough. If using a kitchen-aid pasta attachment, take the dough to the smallest setting. Cover with another sheet of dough and press around filling pockets with fingers to secure. Toss into boiling water 2 or 3 at a time until ravioli float. Transfer to bowl and cover until all are done.

    Sauce:

    While ravioli are cooking, make your sauce. Simply melt the butter in a small saucepan or skillet over medium heat. When butter is browned and smelling sweet, turn off heat and slowly add the cream and whisk until combined.

    Pour sauce over ravioli and top with a generous pinch of parm and a lemon wedge to brighten up all of the rich flavors.

    Doesn’t that just look like it could cure a cold?…

  • Food

    Cuban Braised Beef with Avocado

    A few weeks ago we found a trail off the side of the road in the middle of nowhere. Apparently, it connects to Jordan Lake and its secret status allows for afternoon frolicking with the dogs without running into boy scouts or super-mom joggers.

    It’s almost abandoned and private property-like (don’t worry, mom… it’s not), so there’s plenty of opportunity for fun and make believe farm playing,

    treasure collecting,

    and October swims.

    Ahhhh…. bliss.

    What better way to top off an afternoon like this than with BEEF! Manly, farm style beef… with a cuban twist… and add some avocado… okay maybe it’s not SO manly, but it’s GOOD.

    Recipe for Cuban Braised Beef (adapted from Real Simple)

    • 1 lb steak (any cut, doesn’t need to be expensive)
    • 2 red bell peppers, seeded and sliced
    • 1 large white onion, quartered
    • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
    • 1 tbsp cumin
    • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
    • 1 cup water
    • 3 cups brown rice, cooked
    • 1 avocado
    • sour cream

    Cut steak into strips and sear in the bottom of large pot with peppers, onion, and garlic. When beef is beginning to brown and vegetables are softening, add cumin and pepper flakes. Add water and bring to a simmer before covering and letting cook on low for at least an hour. In the meantime, prepare rice.

    When beef is shreddable, pull apart with the fork and let sit in juices while you get everything else together. Layer braised beef and vegetables on top of brown rice. Top with generous chunks of avocado and a drizzle of sour cream.

    special shout-out to young house love. I know how much you guys love this placemat!

    What’s up with everyone lately? Do you ever eat Cuban food? Empanadas, perhaps?…

  • Recipe

    White Chicken Chili

    While I hate hype, I do love fall. I am just as guilty as all the other suckers who squeal when they put on that first sweater and sip a warm latte on a cold morning. It’s a wonderful feeling and I can’t deny it.

    A wise friend once told me that things were cliche for a reason. As my fall-birthday-sister, with whom I sadly will not be celebrating this year, I knew she was right and go back to this when I find myself fed up with other’s cliche-ness. Instead, I try to embrace the natural good feelings that we all get and come to terms with the fact that just because everyone else feels one way, doesn’t mean I need to feel the opposite.

    ESPECIALLY WHEN IT COMES TO FALL!!!

    Beautiful colored leaves, boots, layers, flannel sheets, hiking in hoodies, whiskey beverages, and chai! Anyone who doesn’t like SOMETHING on this list is lying… or very hot in nature and might not enjoy extra-warming things.

    AND of course, you can’t forget the doozie. It may be last, but it is certainly not least.

    Chili.

    Good, hearty, nourishing, warm chili. This chili recipe is something a little different. It’s a white chili with chicken and poblano peppers. It is one of the best I have made and also one with the fewest amount of ingredients, which is something I strive for. No need to make things more complicated than they need to be.

    Recipe for White Chicken Chili

    • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
    • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
    • 2 large poblano peppers, diced
    • 2 jalapenos, diced
    • 1 lb ground chicken
    • 2 cup chicken stock
    • 3 cans navy beans
    • 2 cups Monterey jack cheese, shredded

    Sautee garlic and onion in large stock pot until fragrant. Add chopped poblanos and jalapenos, remove seeds if you want things less spicy. When peppers begin to soften, add chicken and cook until there is no pink.

    Add chicken stock and beans and turn stove down to low. Let simmer on stove for a minimum of 1 hour. Add cheese and enjoy!

    *Like most, this chili gets better and better the longer it sits. Time and patience pay off, grasshopper!

    What are your favorite comfort foods for cold weather??…

  • Food

    Now What?

    There are endless possibilities with pumpkin seeds. You can make them spicy and savory, cinnamon and sugary, or even just plain and salted. With a thriving rosemary plant on the porch, I figured I’d use what I already had and toss my pumpkin seeds in rosemary and olive oil.

    Recipe for Rosemary Pumpkin Seeds

    • 3 cups raw pumpkin seeds
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 2 generous pinches of salt
    • 4 tablespoons fresh rosemary, roughly chopped

    Toss ingredients and bake on a sheet pan at 275F for 45-60 minutes, or until golden brown.

    These might just rival the beloved tamari almonds. What do you do with your pumpkin seeds?…