Sunday, May 8, 2011

Near Perfection, and some healthier Mac n' Cheese.

Yesterday was fabulous. After a morning of boot camp I got my own work out in. 
- 60 mins of stair intervals. If you are looking for a way to bump up the intensity of your workout this is a GREAT way to do so. They are killer. If they aren't, you aren't doing them right. I was completely soaked in sweat.
- 15 mins on the elliptical. This was more of me talking to Janae than actually getting the heart rate up, but I'm still counting it.
- Benita met up with me for a quick 30 mins full body lifting. We had better things to do, so this was more of a maintenance day.

3sets of each
12 Squats overhead press (20 lb DB's)
alt with 
15 Pushups

12 Squats with a curl (40 lb bar)
alt with
12 Rear DB Rows (20 lb DB's)
12 Rear flies (10 lb DB's)
We had some near 80 degree temps, and we took full advantage. One of my favorite things to do when the weather is nice is ride around on my beach cruiser. 
I love my lil' cruiser for so many of which is the basket. It is perfect for trips to the store, or to the local Crest to grab some diet cokes. :) I also love the fact that it has no gears. I know that sounds crazy, but it makes for a GREAT leg workout. Even the slightest hill kicks your booty! 
Don't mind the wind blown look. It's due to the fact that we spent all afternoon on our bikes. We rode to Pizza Factory for some mile high salads for lunch. We rode to Great Harvest so Benita could pick up some bread. We stopped by the store to get some groceries, and hit up the Crest on the way home. It was AMAZING. I love when exercise feels effortless. Ok...maybe not always effortless. like I mentioned, the gear-less factor makes you put some work into it, BUT it's fun! Exercise should be fun.
Last night my family celebrated Mothers day a day early with two of our favorite things: some BBQ and frozen yogurt. Here's what my plate looked like. I also had a bunch of fresh fruit as my appetizer that isn't pictured here. I am a total pre-dinner snacker if I'm not careful, so I loved that my mom had a bunch of fresh fruit all prepped.
I am not a huge cheese lover, but I do have a special place in my heart for Mac N' Cheese. Who doesn't? I remember thinking I'd died and gone to heaven when I'd get to eat the cartoon shaped pastas every now and again. This is a great family friendly dish that I think would be awesome with some added veggies or even some shredded chicken cooked right in. 

Healthier Home Made Mac n' Cheese
4 oz Whole Wheat Macaroni Pasta 
2 tbsp olive oil, divided
3 tbsp Panko whole wheat bread crumbs
2 tbsp whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
(My mom also adds a dash of garlic powder, onion powder, and Lowry's seasoning for some more flavor)
2 cup fat-free milk
1/2 cup reduced-fat Cheddar cheese

Preheat your oven to 350°F. Coat an 8-inch x 8-inch baking dish with vegetable spray. Bring water to a boil to cook your macaroni noodles according to package directions. Don't over cook them, you don't want your pasta soggy. Drain your pasta and set aside.
In a large saucepan, add 2 tablespoons of oil. Set over medium-high heat. Whisk in the whole wheat flour, paprika, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and Lowrys until smooth. Add the milk, whisking constantly. Continue wisking for about 5 minutes, or until it starts to thicken. Remove from the heat. Stir in the cheese until it melts. Stir in the macaroni. Pour entire contents into your baking dish. Sprinkle your Panko bread crumbs over the top. Bake uncovered for 15 minutes or until bubbling and golden. Allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving.

This recipe serves 4.
Here are the stats:
 We sat outside and enjoyed the beautiful weather. Trying to snap pics of the grand kiddies together is always so funny to me.
 We love you Mama Cita. You are an incredible, mom, friend, and grammy.
 After we ate and let our food sit for a minute we headed over to our favorite, Yogurtland, for some sweet goodness. I went with double cookies and cream, PB, and mint cookie with a few bananas and some granola. I wish I had more right now.
This lil' guy couldn't have been happier to have his own bowl.
And my Nephew Elliot succeeded in making the biggest bowl of frozen yogurt I've ever seen in my whole life. I don't think this photo does it justice.
 Us girls enjoyed ours just as much.
So to sum it all up. Good exercise. Good times with friends. Good healthy food. Good family. So much goodness...I hope your Saturday was just as fabulous!!

What do you like to do for a calorie burner that isn't planned exercise? I love to ride my bike, roller blade (yep i'm that cool) and clean. Do you have a favorite comfort food that you have made healthier, or would like to make healthier? 

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Rene said...

I am going to try the Mac and Cheese for dinner tomorrow night. One of our local yogurt places is by the high school. They have the wall of shame for the people who eat the most yogurt in a single serving (I think the record is somewhere around 83 oz). I'm thinking you or Janae could give them a run for their money.

Vanessa @ Gourmet Runner said...

I love your bike--it's awesome!
Hiking I rarely consider exercise because when I'm with hubs we stop and take lots of photos, talk, and enjoy the scenery. It's so much fun!

Lisa said...

Sounds perfect! I'm going to have to try that mac and cheese too! I too love cleaning to burn calories but also jumping on the trampoline with the kids, talking walks with them and playing at the park =)

MegSmith @ Cooking.In.College said...

That Mac and Cheese looks fantastic!!! also sounds like a perfect perfect day :-) Happy Mom's day to your Momma!

Lindsey said...

Hey we were at yogurtland yesterday too! We were there around 4pm with my grandma. I had key lime pie, graham cracker and coconut topped with strawberries, kiwi, coconut and sweetened condensed milk. Heaven on earth.

Holley @ Lunges and Lashes said...

perfect day for sure! riding bikes, fro-yo and cute kiddies! i love it! thanks goodness summer is finally acting like it!

Holley @ Lunges and Lashes said...

I love your lifting routine, I need to get in some of those combo moves to mix up my routine! thanks for the ideas!

Stefanie D. said...

I love playing with Winston for unplanned exercise. It is always a fight to get his ball back, and I end up chasing him all over the yard, and wrestling him to the ground. You look so much like your Mom and sister! So cute! Have a great day!!

Jody, RD said...

That Mac and Cheese looks awesome! I think I'll give it a try ;)

Jen said...

I used to run stairs a lot. It is a tough work out! I need to get back to doing that. Maybe this summer! All your food sounds great and I love when the weather cooperates. Cruising around on bikes is a great thing to do. I LOVE your bike! So cute!

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