Thursday, January 28, 2016

ReCharge Your Resolution

It's almost the end of January and where are you on your resolutions?  Don't hang your head in shame - only 8% of people succeed at their New Year's Resolutions.  So do you quit for the next 11 months and try again next year?  NOPE.  Pick small changes that you can make monthly and work on long-term results.  

Last week I visited the morning show Daytime to share my tips for quick yet nutritious breakfasts and snacks. And I MAY have tried to juggle in the segment.  What was I thinking??

Starting with breakfast is crucial to long-term weight loss success and studies show this.  I know time is tight in the am so I really like a new product from Yoplait.  
·      It’s Plenti Oatmeal Meets Greek Yogurt and it's oatmeal and refrigerated Greek yogurt combined that you can enjoy cold straight from the fridge!
·      The 16 grams of whole grain, will help you to start the day with long-lasting energy. Plus Plenti Oatmeal is a good source of protein with 11 grams per cup.

And here’s more good news the calcium in the yogurt is tied to improved fat burning in the body.  Plus many women don’t get the recommended amounts of calcium and with the risk of osteoporosis it’s a great start.
Don't forget the fruit in the am like these Wonderful Sweet Scarletts Texas Red Grapefruit.
·      Just half of a medium sized grapefruit will give you 100% of your daily vitamin C needs for just 60 calories.
·      I also like the Sweet Scarletts because they’re sweeter and more vibrant in color and that’s thanks to the Texas climate where they are grown.
I also firmly believe that snacking is important to achieving weight loss success.  It’s a bridge between meals to keep your metabolism moving and prevent you getting “hangry” and grabbing something that will derail your goals. My goal is for you to pair a fruit or a vegetable with a source of protein and fiber and on the show I highlighted Wonderful Pistachios and Wonderful Halos Mandarin.

Here are 3 reasons I love Wonderful Pistachios:

·      They are a good source of protein, a good source of fiber and the serving size is huge – 49 nuts.  That’s a lot more than compared to other snack nuts.
·      There’s also something called the Pistachio Principle – have you heard of it?
·      When using the in-shell pistachios the leftover shells may provide a visual cue for portions, potentially helping to curb intake. Plus cracking the shells may also help to slow down snacking.

We can always add more produce to even the best diet so to my snack I added the perfectly portable Wonderful Halos.
·      They are about 50 calories and  an excellent source of vitamin C which will leave you feeling energized and satisfied.
·      Plus they are naturally fat-free, sodium-free, and Non-GMO project verified.

What was your New Year's Resolution?
Sticking to it?

Love and resolve, 
Carissa & Kyle

I was compensated by the included products for the TV segment but not this blog post.  All opinions are my own.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Dumbbell Sprint Circuit Workout

Combining dumbbell lifts and sprints will give you a quick, efficient workout with a high calorie burn.

Hey blog friends!  I'm just popping in to share a great full body workout that I did on the last day of 2015.  As you can imagine things have been busy around here.  Busy and full of life and wonderful opportunities.  We are challenged by our new schedule, but grateful for the fullness of our days and hearts. (Like honestly it took 5 minute increments over 4 days to write this post!)

I did this workout on New Year's Eve at the hotel gym at Rosen Shingle Creek.  Kyle had the baby and I had 20 minutes.  If you ever have the "Should I lift or should I run" debate then save this workout for those times.  Personally I love running, but I know the benefits of weights will out weigh (get it?!?) the simple calorie burn of running.
I made a fancy Pinterest graphic of the workout but essentially it's 2 rounds.

Round 1 - Dumbbell deadlift, dumbbell shoulder press, dumbbell bent over double row, sprint for 60 seconds (90 seconds faster than your training pace) x 2

Round 2 - Dumbbell front squat, dumbbell flat bench press, lat pulldown, sprint x 2
Finish with abs if time allows

In other news we had a great first Christmas with the Bear.  She is 7 months old now - sitting up on her on, slowly working her way through solid foods (she's still not that interested), and rolling around like a champ.  My fave is the tummy pivot where you blink and she's spun herself in the other direction.
I have a busy 2 weeks of RunDisney fun coming up, so I hope to see many of you there.  Send me a tweet and say hi if you're running!

What's your favorite dumbbell exercise?

Love and speedy lifts,

Thursday, November 12, 2015

RunDisney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2015

Here's the thing about the Wine & Dine Half Marathon...I think it's one of the best race courses RunDisney has to offer AND it has an amazing after party BUT I think it might be unlucky.  Ask any runner who's raced it the last 2 years and they might agree.  Last year it poured the entire race and this year serious lightning threatened to cancel the entire event.
The Wine & Dine Half Marathon is one of the more condensed RunDisney weekends.  It's just 2 days and starts on Friday with the expo.  Saturday is a jam packed day with the 5k, kids races, expo, and half marathon.  I spent Friday afternoon at the expo and had a great time catching up with friends that I had not seen over the summer.
Saturday morning I donned my elf attire and reported for the Kids Races on the track and ESPN Wide World of Sports.  The track opened at 9am for the 10am race starts and I was a bundle of nerves, because my little one was doing her first ever dash around 11:15.  
Elf Stevie D and I sent off all the waves of the 100, 200, and 400 meter dashes.  Then it was the Mickey Mile and finally the diaper dashes!  Kyle brought CBear out and she was joined by Mojo (my mom), Kyle's cousin, his girlfriend, Guy, and our friend Cindy.  She had quite the cheering squad.
Now I went into the race knowing she wouldn't be able to crawl.  Homegirl is only 5 months, but I really just wanted to be able to have her touch the mat and experience that parental pride.  It was all that and more!
Race day was near record highs (87+) so it wasn't an ideal situation for a baby (mine or anyone else's), but Kyle did a great job keeping her cool.  We put her on her tummy on the mat and had a good 90 seconds before boredom and fussing set in.  Kyle helped her make it across and mat and she was rewarded with a medal and Goofy hugs!
A big thank you to my Mom for making her Santa outfit and Kyle and everyone for helping get her set for the event.  It takes a village my friends!
After the kids races I went back to the hotel for a quick nap before the nighttime race.  As a race announcer you lose all concept of time.  5am race, 10pm race...just tell me when and where and I'm ready to say "GO!".
The start line show started as normal and I was surprised when discussions about weather started to come up.  I knew there was a chance of rain, but when I saw the radar it didn't look good.  There were thunderstorms on their way in.  Now rain is an inconvenience, but lightening is a serious issue.  
About 920pm we were told we were on "standby evacuation" and around 935 we were told to alert the 16K plus runners that they needed to evacuate to the stadium and buildings at Wide World of Sports. It was quite a sight to see masses of runners trudging from the parking lot up to the complex.  The announcers returned to the trailer and awaited further instruction.  It was decided that at 10pm I would be sent to the finish line as planned.  One announcer needs to go early to insure someone is in place for the first chair athletes.  It took about 20 minutes to get there and once I arrived I checked in with our timing team and race staff to see what was the plan.  I could still see some lightening off in the distance, but I guess it had cleared our immediate radius.  We set a tentative start time of 1045pm.  The race would happen, but the course was going to be shortened by almost half.  The course would go out of Wide World of Sports, but it would cut out Animal Kingdom and all of Osceola Parkway.  It would basically jump from Mile 1 to Mile 8.  As a runner I know how disappointing that change must have been for the athletes, however we were very close to having to cancel the entire event due to dangerous weather.  I’m grateful to our race director Jon for taking runner safety seriously and giving the runners part of the experience they were looking for.
The first runners came across in about 30 minutes and we welcomed in finishers until 2am.  My Mom ran and earned her 3rd Coast to Coast medal.  Admittedly she wasn’t too sad about the shortened distance – she got to see the Osbourne Lights and save her legs for the Avengers events the following weekend.
It was certainly a memorable weekend and one for the RunDisney books.  Babies, lightening, and still a great after party.

Have you ever run a race that was affected by weather?
What’s the weather like where you are?  It’s still hot HOT here in Orlando.

Love and flashes in the sky,

Carissa & Kyle

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Monday, October 26, 2015

Fall Family Fun

October is one of my favorite months! Who am I kidding...October, November, December..I LOVE them all!  To me they are the "holiday" months and they mean special events planned and plenty of things to look forward to.  This year we're experiencing things in a whole new way with the Bear.  It's her "1st" everything and we are soaking it all in and I'm sure oversaturating social media with pics.
In keep with my goal of blogging more consistently here's a "Family Fun, Fitness, and Food" recap for the past few weeks.

Family Fun
The Bear's first pumpkin patch trip happened this month.  It's never easy to plan a venture out with an infant.  You have to time naps, eating, fussiness and weather.  But this day we had perfect timing, perfect weather and a very happy baby girl.
I could relive this day over and over.  CBear was so bright-eyed interested in all the pumpkins.  She had her eye on one special one that we made sure to get her.

I'm still rocking the "world's worst half marathon training plan".  I ran 5 miles last week with my 2 1/2 minute jog/30 second walk strategy.  I'm hoping to up my miles by 2 each week  and add in a 20-30 minute stroller run 1 other day.  My pace was right around 10 minutes per mile.  I have to keep telling myself to not worry about pace and just get in the miles to finish Space Coast.  It occurred to me on this run that I'll be running Space Coast on the Bear's 6 month birthday.  Finishing a half marathon at 6 months postpartum....I'll take it. (I have to finish first but that's my internal motivation)
Post Run Bird Selfie
Epcot's Food & Wine Festival is a fall tradition for Kyle and I.  We have been annually for the past several years.  We missed last year, because let's be honest...I like food but I like wine better and I didn't really want to go to a festival and watch others partake in the wine.

Usually we go with a big group, but this year Kyle and I opted to go as a couple.  We booked a room a Disney's Boardwalk hotel so we could walk to and from the festival.  If you want to go to Food & Wine I highly recommend looking into a hotel on property.  You can walk to the festival from the Boardwalk hotel, Yacht or Beach club, and the Swan & Dolphin.  You have easy access to Epcot from the "International Gateway" entrance.  It will put you into the park right between France and England.  Best of all there's no driving.  Food + Wine + Driving isn't cool.  Just walk it off to your hotel room and be safe!

Since we've been "Food & Wine Pros" for a while, we have seen some changes over the years.  It's become SO much more crowded then in the past.  I knew we were going on a Saturday and that we should expect lines, but I was surprised by how long they were.  We stuck to shorter lines like Morocco and Greece, but did wait it out for 30 minutes to get a beer flight and beef slider in America.  Another tip is to head to "The Chew" food stands closer to the Epcot ball.  It was much more peaceful over there with short lines.

Another change...smaller beers.  I totally get why they would shrink the size of the beers to "slow the roll" of those drinking, but these are beers for ants.  30 minutes in line for a 3 oz beer?  My 1 normal size beer at a non Food & Wine marketplace.  Keep the cup.  Then by 2 beers when you're at the marketplace and pour them into your saved cup.  Voila.  Beer in a normal human sized cup.
The last thing I noticed....people are serious about their drinking around the world.  So serious they get special shirts made.  I can't tell you how many groups I saw with specific "let's get drunk at Epcot" themed shirts.  Maybe I'm a prude, but I just can't wear a shirt in Disney proclaiming I'm there to drink too much.  Also if you want Disney security to keep a keen eye on you wear matching shirts that say "Drink, Drank, Drunk" with Mickey faces on them.  Just sayin'
Kyle and I had a great time together despite the lines and tiny lagers.  Our favorite eats were the beef tenderloin in Patagonia and the liquid nitrogen dessert at The Chew.
We spent about 4 hours at the festival then stopped at the ESPN Club for more food and football.  About that FSU game.....ouch.

It's been a great October so far and this week is BIRTHDAY week for me!

Have you been to Food & Wine at Epcot?
Are you dressing up for Halloween?

Love and holiday festivities,
Carissa & Kyle

Monday, October 19, 2015

Race Training with an Infant

When I was pregnant with the Bear one thing I looked forward was running again and racing.  I'm love running, but I particularly love training for a race.  The structure, the consistency, that's my jam.  Correction.  That was my jam.

Captain Obvious statement of the week: Having a baby changes everything.
I am running the Space Coast Half Marathon on November 30.  It's a great race and I'm so excited to run.  And I am not at all trained for the race.  I hate admitting that, but it's true.

Here's my new race plan:
Run as far as I can whenever I can.

I am going to finish that race.  I'm going to celebrate the heck out of my first race as a "Mother Runner".  It's not going to be my fastest race, but I'll be out there.  And I'm stoked about that! God bless the Galloway method, because it's the only thing making me feel like this is possible.  I know if I stick to my run-walk-run strategy then I can up my mileage the best I can and finish the race safely and healthy.  Jeff G - you're the man!

For those wondering how my race training got so off, it wasn't just the baby.  For those pregnant ladies or future mommies reading here's a tip - you feet will change after pregnancy.  Mine got wider and in my case that led to 2 infected toenails.  Yup, that's gross.  I finished a 6 mile training run and got home to find my toe kinda hurt.  No biggie.  Then about 3 hours later I noticed my toe was red and the redness was spreading.  I sent a pic to my Mom to get her thoughts and they were "see a doctor!".  Apparently infections can happen fast and spread fast.  2 rounds of antibiotics, 2 toenails removed, 3 weeks later, and 1 MRSA test (that was negative) and I was cleared to run again.  I have new shoes (size 9!) and I run only in Injingi toe socks.
Bear and I have been doing some stroller running together.  It's fun and she usually falls fast asleep.  It's not quite as hard as I thought it would be.  It's hard, but if I pump one arm then I can keep moving at a somewhat decent pace.  In a few months she'll move out of her car seat and fully into the Bob.  The hard part is it's just now not 90 degrees here in Orlando, so I can't stay out too long.  Hot baby = grumpy baby.

Bear and I also did our first 5k this weekend.  It was the Run For Aven which helps support beautiful Aven who is healing from a very aggressive form of soft tissue cancer.
The race went through a local park, Moss Park, and at first I was afraid of some offroad terrain but the Bob stroller did great.  So did Bear.  She was awake the whole time chewing on a toy :)
Mom and I did 2 minute 30 second intervals with 30 seconds of walking and finished in 33:24.  Actually Mom finished in she got those 2 seconds on me I don't know...hmmmmm.... Here's the funny part - both Mom and I WON our age groups!  Pushing a baby and we won our age groups!  Gotta love small races!
I'm looking forward to running more races on my own and with the Bear....even if my training lags as a result!

What races are you training for?
How do you train when life gets busy?

Love and 3 wheeling,
Carissa & Kyle