Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Bean Threads w/Tofu and Vegetables

I LOVE this dish!! If you like tofu, this is a fantastic and easy dish....hey, if I'm cooking it, it's really easy!! Enjoy!!

Bean Threads w/Tofu & Vegetables

8 ounces firm tofu, drained and cubed
1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
3 teaspoons reduced-sodium soy sauce, divided
1 can (14.5 ounces) fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 package (3 3/4 ounces) uncooked bean threads
1 package (16 ounces) frozen mixed vegetable medley (ex: broccoli, carrots & red pepper, thawed)
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1. Place tofu on shallow plate, drizzle with oil and 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce.

2. Combine broth and remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce in deep skillet or large saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat. Add bean threads; simmer, uncovered, 7 minutes or until noodles absorb liquid, stirring occasionally to separate noodles

3. Stir in vegetables and vinegar; heat through. Stir in tofu mixture and red pepper flakes; heat through, about 1 minute. Makes 4 servings.

Nutrients per Serving: 1/4 of total recipe
Calories: 251, Calories from Fat: 32%, Total Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Sodium: 195mg, Carbohydrate: 35g, Dietary Fiber: 5g, Protein: 12g

Dietary Exchanges: 2 Startch, 1 Vegetable, 1/2 Lean meat, 1 Fat

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Nutty Spice Cookies

Happy Holidays!! I hope everyone is having a wonderful Christmas!

Here is a holiday cookie recipe that is yummy and healthy! Enjoy!

Nutty Spice Cookies

1/2 cup light molasses
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cholesterol-free egg substitute
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/3 cup chopped walnuts

1. Spray cookie sheets lightly with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.

2. Stir molasses, sugar, egg substitute, water and oil in medium bowl until sugar is dissolved.

3. Sift flour, baking soda, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves into large bowl, stir to combine. Add molasses mixture, stir with wooden spoon until smooth. (Dough will be stiff.) Refrigerate, covered, at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.

4. Preheat oven to 375*F. Roll out dough into 12-inch square on floured surface. If dough cracks, press together. Sprinkle walnuts evenly over dough, pressing nuts into dough with fingers. Cut square into 8 lengthwise strips, and then 8 crosswise strips to form 64 squares.

5. Place cookies 1 inch apart on prepared cookie sheets. Bake, 1 sheet at a time, 8 minutes or until edges begin to brown. remove cookies to wire racks; cool completely. Sotre in airtight container. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

Nutrients per Serving: 1 Cookie
Calories: 34, Calories from Fat: 20%, Total Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: ,1g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Sodium: 15mg, Carbohydrate: 6g, Dietary Fiber: ,1g, Protein: 1g

Dietary Exchanges: 1/2 Starch

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holiday Workout!!

Last night I attended my final Last Chance Workout at Gold's Gym, where the trainer once again, kicked out butts!! We ran a lot as well as some circuit weights and a great deal of core training with the medicine balls! It felt amazing to work that hard in the gym and burn off calories before the upcoming holiday meals!

I also attended a cycling class this morning....taught by the same trainer.....and had an amazing class. I would highly recommend cycling, or spinning, classes to anyone who is working toward losing weight. I find the cycling classes to be huge calorie burners, and a place where you can really control how hard you work. I generally turn the resistance on the bike to high so I'm working to my fullest potential, but on days when I'm not feeling it, I can keep the resistance low and still get a decent workout. I would encourage anyone who hasn't tried cycling to get out there and check it out!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Holiday No-Splurge Tips

I love reading the Prevention website and picking up wonderful tips on healthy eating and exercise. Here is a great article that will help over the next 2 weeks of holiday party bliss! It's hard to attend soiree after soiree without sampling all the tasty treats that are available. These tips will help you continue to enjoy the tasty treats while not sabotaging your weight!

Chicken Pot Pie

This is one of my personal favorites and a dish that I make often. If you love pot pie's but don't love what they offer for nutrition, then this is a recipe for you.

Chicken Pot Pie

2 teaspoons margarine
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth, divided
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup fat-free half-and-half
2 cups cubed cooked chicken breasts
1 teaspoon minced fresh dill
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 reduced-fat refrigerated crescent rolls

1. Heat margarine and 2 tablespoons chicken broth in medium saucepan until margarine is melted. Add mushrooms, bell pepper, onion and celery. Cook 7 to 10 minutes or until vegetable are tender, stirring frequently.

2. Stir in flour; cook 1 minute. Stir in remaining 1/2 cup chicken broth; cook and stir until liquid thickens. Reduce heat and stir in half-and-half. Add chicken, dill, salt, and black pepper.

3. Preheat oven to 375*F. Spray 1-quart casserole with nonstick cooking spray. Spoon chicken misture into prepared dish. Roll out crescent rolls and place on top of chicken mixture.

4. Bake pot pie 20 minutes or until topping is golden and filling is bubbly. Makes 4 (1-cup) servings.

TIP: For 2 cups cubed cooked chicken breast, gently simmer 4 small chicken breasts in 2 cups fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth about 20 minutes or until meat is no lnger pink in center. Cool and cut into cubes. Reserve chicken broth for pot pie, if desired.

Nutrients per serving: 1 cup
Calories: 286, Calories fromm Fat: 27%, Total Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 54mg, Sodium: 740mg, Carbohydrate: 25g, Dietary Fiber: 2g, Protein: 26g

Dietary Exchanges: 1 starch, 2 vegetable, 3 lean meat

Monday, December 22, 2008

Baby Steps

I finally decided to plow the driveway and head to the gym! OK, it wasn't that bad b/c my husband had already plowed 3 times, but the overnight snow forced me to pull out the snow blower before I could head out of the house.

I really wanted to head to the gym to get some running in and see how my body responds. The training schedule for San Diego begins in a month, so I need to make sure my body is ready for that level of running again. I did about 40 minutes on the elliptical and then headed over to the treadmill for the last 20 minutes. I ran for about 10 minutes in intervals and it felt good. I think it will be OK! I'm still not sure if Derek is on board yet......we talked about the schedule and we will make a decision about registering by the end of next month.

On another note, I got on the scale this morning and I'm down 5lbs over the past week! I'm feeling good and happy to see my injury weight beginning to disappear!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Snow Bound Workouts

We have been hit with a significant amount of snow up here in the northeast, which has kept me from heading to the gym.........Well, I could have gone, but my motivation level was rather low b/c going to the gym would require plowing the driveway and dealing with holiday traffic in the snow. That is not my idea of a good time, so I moved my workouts to my house for a few days.

One of the best forms of at home exercise is playing in the snow! At least, that's how I feel about it. I took Guinness out to play in 1 1/2 feet of snow and he loved it while I got an incredible cardio workout. Running through that much snow gave my legs some resistance, while getting my heart rate up. It was also wonderful for Guinness because he was able to work out a good amount of energy. So, dog or not, just get out there and run around, play, make snow angels, and enjoy it! I had forgotten how much fun it was to play in the snow......Why is it that we only do that as children?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

My dog....

OK, this is totally not exercise/nutrition related, but I just need to put it out there. Thank the high heavens that my Guinness understands the Christmas tree concept this year! Last year within 24 hours of putting it up, he lifted his leg on it! Ugh! I understand it's confusing for a dog (he pees on trees outside), but seriously! So, he has now learned that one must never tinkle in the house, even if the tree is there.

Last Chance #3

We were introduced to some new exercises last night that really focused on our core muscle group. The gym has some new weights called kettle bell weights which provided a kick butt arm, shoulder, and overall core workout! We also did a good amount of work with the medicine balls and the bosu, again, all focusing on our core. It was fantastic!! On Thursday we are going to work with the resistance bands and the weight bars for a different kind of workout.

On another note, I put together an 18 week training schedule for Derek and myself to prepare for San Diego.......and I haven't heard from D since then? I wonder, did I scare the crap out of him.....

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower

I just came across this recipe on the Biggest Loser website and it looks fantastic!! I can't wait to try it! Enjoy!!

Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower

1 ½ cups (6 ounces) cauliflower florets
2 teaspoons reduced-fat grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley leaves
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

Preheat the oven to 425°F.

In a medium bowl, combine the cauliflower, cheese, parsley, garlic powder, and pepper. Season to taste with salt. Toss to mix. Drizzle on the oil and toss again. Transfer the mixture to a small non-stick baking dish and place in oven.Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, tossing once, or until lightly browned and crisp-tender.

Serve immediately.

Makes 1 serving: 104 calories, 4 g protein, 11 g carbohydrates, 6 g fat, <1 saturated fat, <1 polyunsaturated fat, 4 monounsaturated fat, 5 mg cholesterol, 4 g fiber, 121 mg sodium

From "The Biggest Loser Cookbook" by Chef Devin Alexander. © 2006 by Universal Studios Licensing LLLP, The Biggest Loser ™ and NBC Studios, Inc., and Reveille LLC.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Last Chance Workout #2

I went to my Bootcamp style Last Chance Workout tonight and wow......I was either going to throw up or start crying! It was super hard but I loved it!! Once again we started with a cardio warmup that included sprints, but this time we also rotated the sprints with jumping jacks, squat thrusts, and high knees. We then went to circuit weights and core training and ended with abs. I think the "round the clock" push-ups hit me the hardest. Ugh! They came about 45 min into the workout and were killer, but totally worth it! I felt fantastic after the workout! I'm actually excited to go to the Tuesday workout now that I have completed grad classes for the semester.

Gold's also began advertising their Body Transformation this week. I grabbed a flier and will be signing up soon! It starts Jan. 14 and I can't wait!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Webster Park Trails

This morning I decided to begin with a trail jog in Webster park with Guinness, before I headed to the gym. We had a fabulous romp in the woods and Guinness was able to burn up some of his unending energy! Once we get deep into the trails, I let him off leash and he just runs and checks everything out and has a blast. It's fun to watch....until he dives off the footbridge into the creek and the more I yell at him to get out, the more he splashes around. Nice. I have an ornery dog. I should have learned by now, this happens at least once every time we are at the park! We even encountered a deer at one point and I think she startled us as much as we startled her! I jogged along behind Guinness and got a little workout in for myself while he was exploring. I really like trail running! It's so peaceful and beautiful running through the woods.

Once I brought Guinness home and gave him a bath, I headed out to the gym to spend some quality time with the elliptical trainer. I also focused on some lower body weights to round out my exercise for the day. It has been a great morning!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Last Chance Workout @ Gold's Gym

Tonight began this month's Last Chance Workout program where we meet twice a week for a 1 hour, 10 person, bootcamp type training with Paige, one of the gym trainers. It was fantastic!! She absolutely kicked our butts all over the place, starting with some sprints and ending with some core ab work. We started with a warm-up of jogging and sprints and then moved to a circuit training type workout where we spent 1 minute at each of 10 stations. Each station had 3 different exercises, so we rotated through the full circuit 3 times. We then moved into about 10 minutes of ab work. I can't wait until the next session!! It definitely works for me and I look forward to getting back in shape! It's amazing how quickly one can get out of shape.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Healthy and fun Holiday Dip

A few weeks ago I attended our 10th annual Friends Thanksgiving at Deb & Mark's house, where I discovered a bead dip that was simply to die for!! My friend Jane made this bean dip that is amazingly healthy, crazy delicious, and totally addicting!! I made it last sunday for a football party and I just made it again this morning for one of my grad classes this evening. I might even make it for a holiday dinner on Friday!!

Here is the recipe & I hope you enjoy it as much as I have!! Thank you Jane!!

1 can of black beans drained and rinsed
1 medium tomato diced
1 avocado diced
1 large clove of garlic crushed
Mix and season with sea salt and lime juice to taste