Posts made in July, 2013

Light Lemon Chicken

Posted on Jul 24, 2013 in Chicken, Cooking, Dinner, Featured

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This is a great summer meal that cooks quickly and goes with most anything!  I love the freshness of the lemon and basil and the fact that its a light dinner choice!  Use leftovers on a salad for lunch!

Light Lemon Chicken

(serves 4)

Canola or olive oil spray

About 1 pound of boneless skinless chicken breast strips

2 teaspoons of olive oil

2-3 tablespoons of lemon juice (I like a little extra zing!)

2 teaspoons of dried basil

sea salt and pepper to taste

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In a small bowl combine olive oil, lemon juice, and dried basil.

Heat a large skillet over medium high heat and spray with canola or olive oil.

Cook chicken breast strips until cooked through and lightly browned on both sides.  When cooked, spoon sauce over chicken and season with salt and pepper.  Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes over low heat and serve immediately.

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Source: Adapted from http://babyfit.sparkpeople.com/pregnancy-recipes.asp?id=165

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Baked Pasta with Spinach and Turkey

Posted on Jul 24, 2013 in Cooking, Dinner, Featured, Pasta

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAThis is the perfect weeknight meal.  Comes together quickly, is health, and is great as leftovers.  You can also prep it ahead and then just bake it before you’re ready to serve.  I hope you enjoy it!

Baked Pasta with Spinach and Turkey

(serves 8)

Canola or olive oil spray

1/2 cup of grated Pecorino Romano and parmesan cheese blend

8 oz skim ricotta

8 oz shredded mozzarella cheese

2 dashes of dried basil

1-1/2 pounds ground turkey

1 pound of your favorite pasta

2 cloves of garlic, smashed or 1 teaspoon of crushed garlic

10 oz of frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed of excess liquid or 2 cups of fresh spinach

4 cups of your favorite marinara sauce

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Preheat oven to 375 degrees and spray a 9X13 baking dish with canola or olive oil spray.

Cook pasta according to package directions.

In a large skillet brown your ground turkey.  Once cooked, remove turkey to a bowl and add 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil.  Cook garlic for a minute or two then add your spinach.  Season with sea salt and pepper and cook for about 2 minutes.  Add the cooked turkey and your marinara sauce.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl combine ricotta, 6 tablespoons of the grated parmesan cheese, half of the shredded mozzarella cheese, and a few dashes of basil.

Place half of your cooked pasta into your prepared baking dish.  Top with half of your sauce then spread your prepared ricotta cheese mixture evenly over the sauce.  Add the over half of the pasta and top with your remaining sauce.  Sprinkle your remaining mozzarella and parmesan cheese.

Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.  Remove the foil and finish cooking for 5-7 minutes, or until the cheese is nice and melted.  Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

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Source:  Slightly adapted from http://www.skinnytaste.com/2012/09/baked-pasta-with-sausage-and-spinach.html

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Our Favorite Arm Workout

Posted on Jul 19, 2013 in Featured, Fitness

About a month ago Sarah told me she found a great arm workout that she was doing a few times a week so I asked her to send it to me.  I’ve been doing it about 4 days a week for the past month and I love it!  I can already see more definition in my arms and shoulders and feel stronger.  There are 7 moves and you do 15 repetitions of each.  The whole workout takes 10-15 minutes, depending on how slow you are and if you take any breaks in between.  I use 5 pounds weights, but you should use what best suits your current ability.  If you haven’t worked your arms for awhile you may want to do 3 pounds weights for the first week, and if you’ve been working out try 8 pounds.  I’ve been doing about 30 minutes of cardio each day and then alternating days with this arm workout and a leg workout.  I would definitely suggest doing cardio in addition to this workout, even if all you have time for is a brisk 15 minute walk.  Don’t forget to take pictures and measurements before you start so you can track your progress!  Have fun and let us know what you think!

(Source: This workout was taken from yahoo.com  See the link to the original article at the bottom of this page)

 

Arm Toner #1: V Plie Raise Targets: arms, shoulders, upper back and legs

Repetitions: 15

 

 

This move not only sculpts your shoulders, it also targets your upper back (to help you look killer in that strapless dress) too. The addition of the plie squat engages your lower body muscles, and more muscles worked at once mean more calories burned, all leading to faster fat loss.
Holding onto your weights, start standing with your feet positioned about three feet apart, with your knees and toes pointing out about 45 degrees. Extend your arms down in front of your thighs, palms facing in [as shown in photo A]. Lower into a plie position by bending your knees, pointing them out straight over your toes, as you raise both arms overhead into a wide ‘V’ position [as shown in photo B]. Slowly lower arms as you stand back up out of your plie, returning to start.

Arm Toner #2: Triceps Kickbacks Targets: Triceps, back

Repetitions: 15

 

Get rid of arm flab with this triceps-targeted move, and you’ll also work the muscles that line your spine in your back to help improve posture, all of which can lead to a slimmer appearance.
Start standing with your feet hip width apart, knees slightly bent, with a weight in each hand. Bend your elbows by your sides, pulling your arms to the outsides of your ribcage. Hinge forward from your hips, keeping your spine straight, and bring your body forward at a 45-degree angle [as shown in photo A]. Extend your arms behind you, turning your palms up to the ceiling as you extend your elbows s [as shown in photo B]. Bend arms back in by sides and then repeat.

Arm Toner #3: Biceps Curl and Front Press Targets: biceps, shoulders

Repetitions: 15

 

 

This two-in-one toner hits the front of your arms and shoulders and develops the functional upper body strength you need to lift and carry heavy objects (like your child or heavy purse) around during your busy day.
Start standing with your feet hip width apart, knees slightly bent, arms by your sides with a weight in each hand. Bend your elbows and curl the weights in towards your body, turning your palms up as you lift [as shown in photo A]. Next, extend your arms out in front of your chest, turning your palms down as you reach [as shown in photo B]. Bend your arms back into your curl position, and then lower arms back down to your start position.

Arm Toner #4: 90-Degree Raise Targets: shoulders Repetitions: 15

Toned arms start with strong shoulders. This move helps strengthen the shoulder muscles from the inside out, building a strong foundation for your upper body strength.
With your weights in hand, arms by your sides, stand with feet hip width apart [as shown in photo A]. Raise your left arm up directly in front of your shoulder, and your right arm up to the side of your shoulder (your arms should be fully extended at about a 90-degree angle), palms facing down [as shown in photo B]. Lower both arms down by your sides, and then repeat, switching sides (lift the right arm in front, left arm to the side). Repeat 15 times in total, changing sides each time..

 

Arm Toner #5: Standing Shoulder Fly Targets: shoulders, chest, biceps Repetitions: 15

Work multiple muscles – including the ‘cleavage’ muscles in your chest – with this move.
Start standing with your feet hip width, knees slightly bent and weight in each hand. Bend elbows about 90 degrees, and raise both arms out to the sides (your arms should resemble a goal post in this position), brace your abs in tight [as shown in photo A]. Maintaining the 90-degree angle with your elbows, bring your arms together in front of your chest, without letting your elbows drop below shoulder level [as shown in photo B]. Open arms back out to sides and then repeat.

 

Arm Toner #6: Reverse Curl & Side Press Targets: biceps, forearms, shoulders Repetitions: 15

You’ll hit the biceps and shoulder with this move, and the position of your hands during this exercise also helps to develop the often-neglected (but important) muscles in your wrist and forearms.
Start seated with legs crossed, with a weight in each hand, spine straight. With your palms facing down, bend both elbows and curl weights in closer to your sides [as shown in photo A]. Next, extend both arms out to the sides at shoulder height, palms still facing down [as shown in photo B]. Return your arms to the curl position and then lower weights to the floor and return to start.

 

Arm Toner #7: Kneeling Plank Ups Targets: triceps, abs

Repetitions: 15

 

 

This exercise is an effective alternative to the sometimes wrist-straining tricep dips exercise — and you won’t need any extra weight to challenge your arms with this move.
Begin kneeling on all fours on the ground. Position your hands directly under your shoulders, and bring your knees together under your hips [as shown in photo A]. Next, bend both elbows and lower them to the floor, keeping your abs braced in tight and your back straight [as shown in photo B]. Press your body back up to your start position. Be careful not to rock your weight forward and back during the movement – lower your body straight and down and up for maximum triceps toning.

Source: http://ca.shine.yahoo.com/tone-arms-7-days-yes-possible-161552396.html

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Baked Peach Oatmeal

Posted on Jul 2, 2013 in Breakfast, Cooking, Featured

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After a recent trip to Costco I had a large box of white peaches sitting on my counter.  I am definitely a big fruit eater, but even I couldn’t make it through the box before they started getting soft and mushy.  I knew I needed to bake something with them but couldn’t decide what.  Then yesterday I was trying decide what kind of baked oatmeal to make and it dawned on me, peach!!  I’m so glad I tried this recipe.  It has tons of flavor from the spices, it is loaded with peaches, and it helps keep you full for hours.  I love it when yummy things are also healthy for you!  GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Baked Peach Oatmeal

(9-12 servings)

2 1/2 cups of old fashioned oats

1/4 cup of flax seed meal (can omit if you don’t have any)

1/4 cup of brown sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons of cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon of allspice

1-2 dashes of ginger

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1 teaspoon of baking powder

2 cups of milk (or almond milk)

2 eggs

2 tablespoons of coconut oil, melted

2 tablespoons of honey

1 teaspoon of vanilla

2 cups of peaches, chopped (about 2 large peaches.  Any kind will work)

1/2 cup of walnuts, pecans or other nuts (optional)

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Preheat oven to 375 degrees and spray an 8X8 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.

In a large bowl combine all ingredients and stir well.  Pour oatmeal into prepared baking dish and bake for 35 minutes, or until the edges are pulling away from the dish and the top is lightly browned.  Let sit 5 minutes then serve.  Great reheated the next day with milk and a handful of blueberries!

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Source:  Slightly adapted fromhttp://youngaustinian.com/2013/01/28/mr-darcys-baked-peach-oatmeal/

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