One + Four = Life | Feb 2016 (Part 1)

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Welcome to another One + Four = Life posts! These are pretty fun to do, though I may not get to them weekly. I’m hoping for bi-monthly because 1) other priorities and 2) my life just isn’t that exciting, sadly.

Hope you enjoy the glimpse into my life…

Had another nerd out last weekend! Went to see a local improv group at The Off Broadway Theater. They performed “Star Ward”, which was a Mormon-themed Star Wars. Not as funny as the local comedy we saw a few weeks ago but still entertaining!

 

 

Of course, the Super Bowl!! Great defensive game, glad my Broncos won! Best of all, got to chill at home with the hubs and our little girl and eat homemade cauliflower bites and super yummy chicken wings (both made with combo of Frank’s Red Hot and Parmesan). Mmmmm….. 😀

fondue

“For Your Kitchen” (a local kitchen/gadget store) held a hands-on Fondue night on Feb. 13th. Fondue? Yes please! We were given chicken, veggies, batter and sticks and got to make our own dinner. It was a little awkward (we had to share a pot with 4 other people) and slow but a lot of fun. We made a fun, unique memory together which is my favorite part of any activity.

shakes

 

What better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than with Deadpool, wings and shakes?? Okay, we don’t really celebrate Valentine’s Day. This was just a typical Sunday date for us. And it was fantastic! We had awesome wings (at our favorite Wingnuts), saw Deadpool (which was f***ing awesome, btw!!!) and then hit up Warren’s drive through for some shakes. Yes, there are 3 shakes and only 2 of us. If the hubs wants different flavors, he gets 2 small shakes. When we got home, we popped in the last season of Star Wars: Clone Wars and enjoyed our shakes. This was seriously the best day of the weekend!

The Top 10 “Staples” for Transforming My Physique

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There has been a progression to my workouts, mindset and goals over the last 12 years. The biggest progression to my physique has been over the last 2 years. And I’m happy with it all, though I always strive to learn more, be more and improve. For me, fitness doesn’t have an “end”.

Here are the Top 10 “Staples” in my workouts that have really helped transform my physique.

squats1. Squats. I’m not talking about the barely going parallel crap either. I’m talking the below 90 degree, ass to the grass squats that make you work. Best overall leg movement, in my opinion. Plus, I feel like a super BOSS when the heavy weight goes on!

lats2. Lat Pull downs. I love these! So many variations, big results. This move has really helped shape my back and gives more of a nice “V” shape to my midsection.

3. Straight legs. These are easier on my knees than deadlifts and can be done with a regular weighted bar or the Smith machine. I prefer the Smith machine followed by dumbbells.

4. Hamstring curls. I like doing all of the machines possible for curls – laying down, sitting, upright. If there’s a good machine for hams, I’ll find it.

Next is the trifecta for building boulder shoulders: press, raise and flye… 🙂

boulders

5. Shoulder press. I alternate between the squat rack, straight bars and sitting to do presses. My shoulders have really taken off by incorporating these moves and I love it!

6. Shoulder raises. Again, variation is key. I love doing shoulder raises. As a bonus, they help build up my traps as well. Score!

7. Rear delt flyes. My favorite move for the rear delt is on the double cable row. I will do a ba-zillion sets on the cables because it’s one of my favorite moves.

lat row

8. Low cable rows. I’ll use the same double cable row for lats or the single lat row cable. Both are great but, for isolation, I’ll use the one with double handles, do one lat at a time and really squeeze those muscles during my set.

9. Tricep push/pull downs. My triceps are still a work in progress but have gotten much more defined by incorporating a variation of moves and high/low reps. I love doing push downs and pull downs versus overhead movements, due to some elbow injuries.

10. Bicep curls. Biceps are another work in progress but I love doing rope curls. I can go heavier, which makes me feel like Hercules 🙂 and it’s a little easier on my elbows and forearms than regular curls, though I do those too. Variety!

absI always love feedback and new ideas, so comment below…   What are YOUR favorite moves? What’s really helped ignite YOUR progress?  Happy Lifting! 😀

 

Kids, Schmids! 5 Things to STOP Saying to People Who Don’t Want Kids.

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no storkI’ve encountered many people who like to give their, unsolicited, opinions and thoughts on my not having children. I don’t ask why you felt the need to have them, I would appreciate if you didn’t feel the need to ask why I don’t. But it’s very simple. I choose not to.

Now, this wasn’t always the case. When I was a little girl, playing with my Barbie dolls, I dreamt that one day I would meet my prince charming, get married and have 2 kids. Why? Because that’s what people were supposed to do. Get married and have kids. So that’s what I was supposed to do, too.

snippedBut the more I really looked at my life and what I truly wanted, I realized that maybe it wasn’t for me. I had no urge or desire to have kids. Would this change? Who knows. Then I met my husband Shawn. He was very upfront about his vasectomy and asked how I felt about kids. I told him I was about 95% sure I didn’t want them. Four years later, here we are. Childless and enjoying life, both content with the decision.

The older we get, the more people like to share their opinions on our childless lifestyle. Here are some of the things that I’ve heard that people need to STOP saying to people who don’t want kids:

1. It’s different when they’re your kids. You’re right. If they’re mine, I can’t give them back at the end of the day. I don’t care for that arrangement.

2. They enrich your life. No, they enrich your life, not mine. And that’s okay. Not everyone’s lives are enriched by a child’s presence. Especially mine.

arrogant3. That’s a selfish decision. Actually, it’s a selfless decision. Shawn and I don’t feel that we could devote the time we would want to, which would be to the detriment of the child. And I’m pretty sure having a child just so someone can take care of us when we’re old and provide missing joy to our lives, even though we don’t really want the child, is considered more selfish.

vacation4. You’re lucky to not have such a busy life. Wtf? Seriously, wtf?! I choose to fill my life with other things besides a child. My and Shawn’s days are jam packed. You know, with full time jobs, school, the gym and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. We also supplement our time with date nights, fun outings and travel. Most days (right now anyway), we’re lucky to watch 20 minutes of tv and relax together at the end of the day. I know people, with kids, who have hours of free time each day. Me? Maybe that 20 minutes. Sometimes not even that. Stop assuming I’m sitting at home eating bon bons with my hours upon hours of free time each night just because I don’t have a kid.

5. You’ll regret it one day. And maybe one day you’ll regret having children. The response to #3 above applies here, too.

So, there are just some of the things to STOP saying to childless couples. This post was sparked by the following article, http://www.cosmopolitan.com/lifestyle/a6152/childless-women/, a must read! The article gives some more great things to stop saying.

Some people, like Shawn and me, have realized that parenting is not for us and continue to enjoy our lives. Thanks, just the same, for your concern.

Sincerely,

Happily Childless

no regrets

Epic Low-Carb Chicken Burger (Re-Make)

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Decided to try out a new recipe last night and OH MY GOD, it was amazingly delicious! Absolutely loved it and can’t wait to have it again! If you decide to try it, I would love to hear your opinions and comments 🙂

We made some tweeks to the recipe. Here’s the version we made last night, original recipe below along with the nutrition info (if following original recipe). Forgot to take a picture of the finished beauty but it’s pretty dang close to the picture below (minus the lettuce, top mushroom cap and fancy plate). Enjoy! 🙂

Ingredients:

• 1.5lb lean ground turkey (this made 4- 4oz burgers and 4- 3oz burgers)
• 4 portobello mushroom caps
• 4 thin tomato slices (red)
• 1 small avocado, split between all the burger
• 4 portobello mushroom caps
• 1 cup chopped peppers (red, orange and yellow mixed)
• 2 fried eggs

Steps:

1. Set oven to 375F.
2. Wash portobello mushrooms and remove stem. Dry them with a paper towel.
3. Place them face down on baking/cookie sheet, spritz of spray butter and top with garlic.
4. Bake in the oven for 18 minutes.
5. Season ground turkey with pepper, salt, garlic, cumin, cayenne, paprika, Walden Farm’s BBQ sauce and Frank’s Red Hot Buffalo sauce.
6. Measure out 4- 4oz burgers and 4- 3oz burgers and cook in a skillet on medium heat. Remember to flip the patty so that the inside and sides of the patty are completely cooked.
7. Make 2 fried eggs, seasoned with pepper.
8. Remove the mushroom caps from the oven, place both face up on plate. Made one w/turkey burger, tomato and avocado. Made the second burger exactly the same but added the fried egg on top. We each had 2 burgers, one with fried egg on top.
9. Can eat with your hands but we used forks. The garlic from the mushroom caps made it pretty juicy and hard to hold. Eat!

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Original Recipe:

chicken burger

Ingredients:

• 5oz lean ground chicken
• 2 portobello mushroom caps
• 1 large leaf lettuce
• 2 leaves red cabbage
• 3-4 thin tomato slices (red, yellow, green)
• 1 tbsp goat cheese
• 1/16 cup shredded carrots (or 2-3 carrot slices)
• 1/2 small avocado slices.

Steps:

1. Set oven to 375F.
2. Wash portobello mushrooms and remove stem. Dry them with a paper towel.
3. Place them face down in a baking pan and lightly spray with olive oil. Sprinkle a little sea salt and garlic.
4. Bake in the oven for 8 – 10 minutes.
5. Season with your ground chicken with your choice of seasonings. I recommend sea salt, garlic, cumin, cayenne, paprika.
6. Form a hamburger patty and cook in a skillet on medium heat. Remember to flip the patty so that the inside and sides of the patty are completely cooked.
7. Remove the mushroom caps from the oven and immediately begin to assemble your burger.
8. Place the mushroom cap face up. Add: lettuce, cabbage, tomato, chicken burger patty, goat cheese (crumble or spread), avocado, carrots.
9. Top the burger with the other end of the mushroom cap. Smash it down with your hands and eat!

Approx macros: 

nutrional-facts