Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Fit Mama Day 2 Half Marathon Training, Family Bike Ride, and Fave Dressing!

So today was my 2nd day of officially training for my Half-Marathon coming up on April 29th.  As you might know, I enjoy running and have been running just for fun since my last Half-Marathon in November.  On any given day, I pump out 2-5 miles just depending on how I feel.  I picked a super easy training schedule, which has only 3 days of training runs per week.  That way, I can spend the other days cross-training or as a rest day.  Today I ran 6.2 miles and I felt GREAT.  I finished in a little over an hour, so about 10:30/mile pace.  Not very quick so I'll work on my speed a bit before my race.  I'd really love to finish with an average 10 minute mile! 

Today was a BEAUTIFUL 70 degree day in Tulsa so we decided to go for a family bike ride after the kids got out of school!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

How Fit n Busy Mama Does Clean Vegetarian Grocery Shopping

So today was my first shopping day for our vegetarian diet (for lent).  After scouring recipes and preparing my grocery list last night, I was ready!  My dear friend and clean eating protege, Sara, tagged along today for some shopping to figure out how to buy organic/clean on a tight budget such as ours!

Best Ever Chickpea "Burger" Recipe and Fit n Busy Mama's Clean Vegetarian Meal Plan!

Let me just start this blog by saying that tonight's dinner (day 1 of our vegetarian meal plan) was one of the best dinners I've had in a LONG time.  Usually, I cook meat dishes for my family but I just end up eating the veggies and carbs as my meal and omit the meat all together.  So, I was really looking forward to cooking a whole vegetarian meal.   I had a recipe I found on the blog Oh She Glows for an easy avocado cream pasta dish.  I had several avocados I needed to use up and lots of bags of brown rice spaghetti on hand (they were on sale for $2 at Walmart last week so I bought every bag they had).  But, I knew that I needed some extra protein with it and a veggie side.  I always have lots of beans on hand and I knew that people made "burgers" out of beans all the time and I really wanted to try it.  So, I got the idea to make a chickpea "burger" and serve it on top of the avocado cream pasta.  IT WAS AWESOME!!!  And even my meat-loving husband was in heaven!  I am still completely satisfied and so is Mike, who was concerned he was going to be STARVING for the next 40 days during our meat-fast for lent.  Here are some pics and my recipes!!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Holy Sweet & Crunchy Guacamole! And How Busy Mama does Gourmet Leftovers

Today was kind of a lazy day, as many Sundays are!  My husband took Eli & Sophie to church and I stayed home with Addy & Chris since Addy was not feeling well.  She has a slight fever, headache, and stuffy nose....  So after he left with 2 of the kiddos, I laid Chris down for a nap and got my workout in for the day!  Here was my workout:


26-31 (COOL DOWN)

Then, I hopped off the treadmill, and did:
  • 10 real push ups
  • 20 leg lifts (ab workout)
  • Pilates Hundred
  • 1 minute plank
  • 10 real push ups
  • 5 minutes stretching
For lunch was the Mediterranean salad I put together yesterday and it was AWESOME!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Busy Mama Lunches, Other Food Prep, & Awesome Healthy Meatloaf recipe

Today was a very busy day!  Elijah had his first soccer practice this afternoon for the Spring season so I got a lot of meal and food prep done before and after. 

I made up a big batch of Mediterranean Salad, for quick lunches for me next week.  I am a very busy mama and many days I don't have time to make up a nice healthy lunch.  When I was trying to lose weight last Spring, that was one thing that sabotaged my goals all the time:  being too busy, not having time for a healthy lunch, and then when I would finally eat, I would be so starving that I would make bad choices or grab for the quick (unhealthy) snacks I had in the pantry. 

So, here is what I put together:

Friday, February 24, 2012

Fit n Busy Mama Dinner "Party"

Since I've started my blog, I have had several friends of mine that started trying to eat healthier and feed their families healthy home cooked meals.  Let me just say that this TOTALLY makes my day!  I LOVE getting random texts from friends with pictures of food they're making.  It makes all of this work worth it!  So, we had plans to go out to a nice restaurant with some friends tonight but when it came down to it, we didn't have a babysitter set up and decided not to spend all that money on a night out.  So, we had the brilliant idea to have a dinner "party" instead.  I guess I can't really call it a party since it was just us 2 families....but hey, wherever we are, it's a party right??

Thursday, February 23, 2012

"Fasting" for Lent, Fit Mama Workout and Green Monster SUPER HEALTHY Smoothie!

As many of you may know, yesterday was Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the Lenten season (which lasts for 40 days until Easter Sunday).  Lent is a time of sacrifice for Christians in which we should give up something dear to us or something that may be blocking our relationship with others and with God.  This is all in an effort to get closer to God in this season.  Last year, Mike and I gave up sweets (dessert).  It was really hard but I was glad we did it because I didn't realize how addictive sugar was until I broke my "habit".

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Kid's Bike Shopping, AWESOME Family Dinner Recipe, & Slap-Yo-Mama Rotisserie Chicken

Today was a BEAUTIFUL day in Tulsa!  75 degrees and sunny...felt like Spring and it's the middle of February.
Here I am basking in the sun in the backyard as the kids played after school!
What are those?  Oh yes, those are my legs in shorts with flip February!  This time last year we were covered in so much snow!

I have to say I'm not complaining about this Spring-like weather.

So, we are less than a month out on our 8 y.o.'s birthday and we knew that we were going to get her a new bike, remember our last family bike ride disaster?  Well, Addy's bike is too small and she was complaining the whole time about how small it is for her.  So, we decided today that since it was such a nice day, we would shop for a new bike for her and give it to her as an early birthday present.  We shopped all around:

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Busy Mama does Mardi Gras, healthy vegetarian family dinner, & Mama B-Fast!

You know every busy mama needs a night out with friends!  Our friends had a mardi gras party this weekend at their house.  We had an awesome time meeting new people, catching up with acquaintances, dancing, and just having fun!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Fit n Busy Family Bike Ride Disaster and AMAZING healthy dinner recipe!

So after lunch today, the weather in Tulsa was 55 degrees and sunny.  We decided that it would be a GREAT day for a family bike ride!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

New Hair-Do, Roasted Rotisserie-style Organic Chicken Recipe, and Yummy Strawberry Muffins!!!

Every busy mama must make time for herself too!  Sometimes I get caught up with the kids and my husband and working so hard for them that I forget about myself.  Many days, I just pull my hair back, put on my yoga pants and call it a day.  But, even though I am very busy, I still want to try hard to look nice!  It had been 4 months since I had my hair done last.  I usually do it every 2 months but with Christmas, we were trying to spend as little as possible. 

So yesterday, I went to the best hair stylist in the Tulsa area, Amara at Ascend Hair Designs in Jenks.  And here is how it turned out:

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Busy Mama in the Kitchen & AWESOME healthy enchiladas recipe

I am not a chef.  I never really had a passion for cooking or a love for the culinary arts.  My experience in the kitchen has been purely necessity based. 

I started cooking for my family about a year and half ago....I know I know why didn't I do it sooner?  By then, my oldest already had 6 years of McDonalds twice a week (at least) and junk food.  I'm pretty sure one of her first words was "McDonalds".  I'm not proud of this.  In fact, it makes me sad that I didn't try harder when she was little or when my son was little.

Fit n Healthy Kids

One of the hardest things about becoming healthy has been my kids' attitude toward food and nutrition.  If you read my weight loss journey blog, you know that I have tried for a long time to eat healthy but that never translated to my kids.  I was always at a loss for what to make for me and the kids that would be healthy and they would actually enjoy.  So, just to save the complaining, I would make myself dinner then make theirs separate:  mac n cheese, frozen nuggets, french fries, corn dogs, pizza, etc. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Registered for the Half Marathon! & some AWESOME recipes!!

Well, I am officially registered for the OKC Half-Marathon in April! 

I have been kind of putting it off, thinking about the full marathon, not really sure, going back and forth...  and finally I decided to just go for another half.  I am very confident that I could run a full marathon if I decided and committed to do it.  But right now in my life, I just don't think I am ready for that kind of time commitment.  I am a VERY busy mama, after all!  Maybe when all the kids are in school?  I'm not sure...  I definitely want to accomplish the 26.2 miles at least once in my life.  

Monday, February 13, 2012

Cooking Healthy/Organic for Your Family on a Budget

It is a common misconception that you can't cook healthy/organic when you're on a budget.  In reality, we spend, as a family, the same amount now with 4 kids (mostly organic) as we did when we only had 2 kids and had boxed meals and junk food.  So, here are some tips for shopping on a budget!

My take on coupons
I could probably save a little more if I went through the trouble of getting the Sunday paper and clipping coupons, but I have found that 90% (if not more) of the coupons out there are for junk food, candy, and the sugary cereals.  I feel like my time is worth something.  So, am I going to spend a day hunting for coupons, buying all the local newspapers, etc just to save a couple dollars at the store?  NO!  My time is worth way more than that.  I do look through the Red Plum deal I get in the mail and I don't think I've ever seen a coupon for healthy foods.  And, to top that off, I believe that coupons can be negative in a way.  Sometimes, you see a coupon and buy that item just because you save 25 cents, when you would have never bought it in the first place.  In some ways, we spend more money with coupons than without.  You just have to be smart about it.  If you do find coupons, ONLY use the coupons for foods you would NORMALLY buy. 

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Healthy Homemade Bread & Pizza - SUPER EASY!!!!

I always thought that making your own bread was a tedious, painstaking, time-consuming process so I never even considered it.  I am a very busy mama after all!  I don't have time for kneading bread all day!  Then, I came across this website, artisan bread in five minutes per day.

Here is the video I use when I'm ready to make my bread.  It is really short and a must-watch:

The whole point is to have the dough made up and in the refrigerator so when you're ready to make a loaf of bread or pizza, you just have to pull off some of the dough from your batch.

Here is the recipe and some of my pictures from when I made up a batch of dough the other night:

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Our V-Day Extravaganza and Other GREAT Lunch & Dinner Recipes!!

Well our V-Day extravaganza was a success!!  Mike and I left last night around 7:15 for a night out at the Mayo Hotel.
This is the same place we got married 5 & 1/2 years ago...

It's crazy how much they changed since we got married there.  It was just an old, vacant hotel in 2006 and now it's completely renovated hotel with lofts!  It's absolutely beautiful. 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Fit n Busy Mama Takes Time for Daddy....and Other Valentines Shenanigans

V-Day is coming up next week so I figured it was time to write a blog for this special holiday.  Some people loathe this holiday and others cherish it.  Me?  I love Valentine's Day.  Growing up I remember my mom always had special Valentines Day presents or candy for us when we got home from school.  Now that I'm married, my husband is a BOSS at making me feel special on this holiday (and any other holiday for that matter) and I love having fun surprises for my kiddos when they get home from school. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Trekked to Whole Foods Today...Worth it??

Well kids, I finally trekked out to Whole Foods today since it's my husband's day off, he could stay with the kiddos, and it was conveniently Double Sale Flyer Wednesday!

I usually buy all my groceries at 3 stores:  Walmart for the bulk of my shopping, Akins for organic cheeses and brown rice tortillas, and Target for anything Walmart doesn't have (but is cheaper than Akins).  I know those 3 stores like the back of my hand and I can run in and out to all 3 stores in about an hour and a half.  I am a busy mama, afterall, and don't have time to waste!  I usually try to go after I drop my 4 y.o. off at pre-k and before my babies' naps.  So, I am on a time crunch!  I never have time to go to Whole Foods during the week because, well, it's at 41st and Peoria and I live practically in Bixby.  But today I thought I'd check it out since we didn't have any plans and my husband could watch the kiddos while I went.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Some More Great Family Friendly Dinners

I've been slacking on posting some of my recent meals and recipes so I thought I'd combine a couple on this post.  Saturday, I had an Italian Pot Roast cooking in the crock pot all day (9 hours!).  I had a baby shower to go to and some other errands to run.  I didn't want to worry about slaving over dinner in a time crunch.  If you don't have a crock pot, get one.  If you have one, use it!  As a busy mama, I rely on mine at least 2 days a week.  I choose a couple days when I know I have a lot going on.  It is very easy to just get take out or pizza when you have a lot of running around to do, but if you have dinner in the crock pot, it's ready to go with very little effort at the end of the day!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Fit Mama's Top Weight Loss Tips

At the beginning of every year, it's the same thing....tons of weight loss product commercials and deals at local gyms.  Everyone is capitalizing on people's new years resolutions:  to lose weight.  Don't be captivated by all the weight loss gimmicks!  There is NO QUICK FIX to losing weight, keeping the weight off, and being healthy.  Trust me!  I know from personal experience, as a person who tried all the gimmicks.  I decided to write a blog on this topic because while I'm doing my Hulu workouts, there are tons of commercials for Jenny Craig and Slim Fast.  I am very bothered by their commercials, promising "fast" weight loss, and still being able to eat "chocolate and loads of pasta".  Slimfast's catchphrase is "who has time to slim slow".  I wonder how many millions of people waste their money on such programs, only to find out that maintaining (any) weight loss after they stop the program is VERY difficult.  I am not going to bash them too much but I am confident that the percentage of people that either don't lose weight or can't maintain the weight loss is very high. 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

It's Not Too Late! GREAT Super Bowl Recipes!!

Ok, so I just got home from an AMAZING run (4 miles) outside in the 50 degree weather....and of course while I'm running I'm thinking about all the things I need to do when I get home!  We are going to our friend's house for the Super Bowl Watch Party and I am bringing a couple healthy snacks.  It got me thinking about any of you that might be reading my blog and if you're wondering what to pick up at the store for the game.  Before you go and splurge on Doritos and taco dip, I have a couple QUICK and EASY recipes you can make right now!   Ready...Go!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Chris Goes for EEG and Some Great Grocery Store Finds!

Well today was a crazy day!  I had so much on my plate today.  My 4 y.o. needed a hair cut desperately so I took him this morning after we got up and around.  Kuts 4 Kids by Will is the best ever in Tulsa!!! 

Thursday, February 2, 2012

New Fitness Discoveries & More Kid Friendly Recipes

I am always looking for new ways to exercise.  I like to change it up so that I don't ever get bored.  If you've read my other blogs, you know that I can get real creative with have to with 4 kiddos in the house and no gym membership!  Well for any of you out there with Hulu Plus ($8/month), you have access to tons of fitness shows.

News Flash: Sugar is Bad For You

So I saw on the news last night that according to researchers, sugar is toxic and should be regulated like alcohol and tobacco.  I think we all know that sugar is really really bad for us but to what extent?  Researchers claim that sugar (specifically found in high fructose corn syrup and refined sugars) are as detrimental to society as alcohol and tobacco.  They say there is a direct correlation between sugar and obesity, diabetes, and other chronic diseases.

The researchers propose regulations, such as taxing all food and drinks that contain added sugar, banning sales in or near schools, and placing an age limit on purchases.

Seem extreme?  I dunno.  Based on what I know about sugar, I really hope they can at least increase public knowledge on the topic.

Here are some different types of sugar, where they come from, & what damage they can do to the body:

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Fit Mama's Beginner Running Tips

If you've read any of my blogs, you know how much I love running.  I really like many forms of fitness, but running is something that I desperately look forward to.  It is more than just exercise to me, it is a great de-stresser.  It is one of the only moments of the day I can just zone out, listen to my tunes, and think about things.  I get a chance to organize things in my brain.  I have had many epiphanies while running.  I am pretty caught up with babies all day, overwhelmed, running around and I would say that I can be pretty scatterbrained at times.  But, while I'm running my mind is as clear as can be.  If you are a runner, you know what I'm talking about.  I know some people that HATE running, so I've seen all kinds.  It's not for everyone. 

But if you're on the fence and thinking about taking up the sport, I have a couple tips I've learned that will help you get started!