About Me

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I am a former career girl and am now a stay-at-home-mom to 2 amazing little girls. Exercise and "dieting" have never been easy for me. But now more than ever, I am determined to adhere to a more active, healthy lifestyle. I am not dieting - just making smarter, more natural food choices. I want to set a great example for my girls. I starting running last year with the Couch-to-5K running program. I've lost over 35 pounds since last year and I want to lose 60 more. I completed my first race (a 5K) in October and I running a 10K by this summer. My long-term goal is ultimately to run a half-marathon in 2012. I've created this blog to put it all out there and most of all - to keep me honest. I include a tested recipe & inspiring workout song on each post. I am also hoping to inspire and be inspired by you! I would love for you to join me for this journey and become an official follower of this blog!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Believe - Trust - Change

Believe in yourself, trust the process, change forever. 

This was one of trainer Bob Harper's facebook status updates this week. And I love it - especially coming from him, as I find him super inspiring.

This is something I really need to do, now.

I have hit another bump in the road with running (see running update*). It started to get me down this week, as I've also had a really tough week mentally and could really use that runner's high (there's nothing quite like it.) What frustrates me more than anything is that I don't want to have up to ramp up my running super slowly again a.k.a. "trusting the process". But I will, and although I am a super impatient person, I would rather be able to eventually run for 10 miles than not run at all. 

This week as a diversion to my running absence, in addition to the stairmaster, I started doing a kettlebells DVD routine. I really loved working with the kettlebells, but I could barely walk down the stairs for a few days after I did it (no joke). The below article made me feel alot better about it. If you haven't tried kettlebells - do it! They are alot of fun and you will work muscles you didn't even know you had. I am looking forward to building these new muscles up! 
NOTE: If you are sore after kettlebells check out this article:


Please feel free to leave any feedback via the comments below or on my facebook page that you can link to on the right side of this page.

*Running Update: Unfortunately the shin splint came back in my right leg :(. After talking to a trainer and a "shoe expert" it was basically due to too much too soon. Go figure. Those who know me well know that I have kind of an all or nothing mentality. When starting running you aren't supposed to increase your weekly mileage more than 10% per week, and I was over doubling mine. I am more frustrated about this than I can properly express. So now I am just letting it heal a bit more - I also got over-the-counter insoles for my running shoes from a running store - hopefully they will help too.

Weight Update: I just didn't have it in me to weigh myself this week. I will be back with the next post on the 7th(ish) with a weigh-in update and am hoping to have maintained the 20 lb. weight loss. In that post I will also set a 2-week weight loss goal to get me mentally better back on track and losing more quickly again now that the holiday madness is over and I know where I stand running wise (meaning that I need to work in other supplemental forms of exercise!)

The Black Eyed Peas are my favorite overall group to run/workout to. This is more mellow than the usual ones that pump me up but for some reason this song really does it for me. I love it!
RANDOM TIP OF THE WEEK: Try goji berries. They are up-and-coming superfood. You can find dried goji berries at health food stores. They are supposed to also help with sleep and mental focus! Which I could use both of. 
THIS WEEK'S RECIPE: Superbowl Buffalo Chicken Casserole!

I originally saw this recipe in Eating Well magazine (Sept/Oct 2010). I had to try it for a few different reasons. 1. I am always looking for make-ahead recipes. 2. One of my guilty pleasures is buffalo wings dipped in blue cheese. (specifically BW3 spicy garlic). 3. It sounded kind of adventurous. It makes SO much. I put in two pans and gave one to my parents. This recipe was husband and parent approved.  Although it's not as good as the real thing - it has alot of flavor and is really hearty. It would be the perfect dish to serve at a Superbowl party!

WARNING: If you do not like Frank's Red Hot and do not like blue cheese, you will not like this recipe!
Buffalo Chicken Casserole

8 servings (they say - I say it's alot more than 8!) Active Time: 45 minutes | Total Time: 1 1/2 hours


This picture was taken before it was baked
  • 12 ounces whole-wheat elbow noodles
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3 medium carrots, sliced
  • 3 medium stalks celery, sliced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 4 cups low-fat milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons hot sauce, preferably Frank’s RedHot
  • 3/4 cup crumbled blue cheese (about 4 ounces)


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Bring a Dutch oven of water to a boil. Cook noodles until barely tender, about 2 minutes less than package directions. Drain, rinse and set aside.
  3. Heat oil in the pot over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, onion and garlic and cook until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Add chicken and cook until no longer pink on the outside, 5 to 7 minutes. Whisk cornstarch and milk in a medium bowl; add to the pot along with salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring often, until bubbling and thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in hot sauce.
  4. Spread the noodles in a 9-by-13-inch (or similar 3-quart) baking dish. Top with the chicken mixture; sprinkle with blue cheese.
  5. Bake the casserole until it is bubbling, about 30 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Nutrition Per serving : 441 Calories; 12 g Fat (note - this is for a huge serving as I think this recipe makes alot more than 8 servings!)

  • Make Ahead Tip: In Step 2, cook the noodles 4 minutes less than package directions. Prepare through Step 4, cover and refrigerate for 1 day. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes, then bake at 400°F for 45 minutes.


  1. Hi, I clicked over here from C25K page on facebook. We have a lot of similarities-- I've lost 20 pounds since July and plan on doing my first 5K either late March or mid-April. Also Kettle Bells! I can remember being so sore when I first started. I've been doing a modified version I learned from a DVD, at the min 3x week. I started out with 7 lb, and I'm at 15 lb now... thinking of going up to 20 lb here pretty soon. I hadn't done any "weight training" since high school but I love my little kettle bell workout. Now I'm also doing an upper body workout with dumb bells.

    Nice to meet you!

  2. Sandra- It's so nice to know there are other people on the same path. And good to know that the kettlebell soreness eventually eases up? How many KB workouts did it take? :)

  3. I'd say it took a week or so (about 3 - 4 workouts?). I took more rests days at the beginning because of it. Also a few weeks into it my left shoulder started to ache. That eventually went away but stuck around long enough for me to worry a little. I think I might have been doing my Turkish Get Ups wrong on that side or it was just weaker than my right shoulder and getting more of a workout for the first time.