Behind the Scenes #32: I’m Just Weird

Hi!

It has been several weeks since I did a behind the scenes post (last time was my first week of college?!), so that’s what I’m doing right here and now. :)

Thinking-Out-Loud

Head over to Spoons’ blog for more random thoughts this Thursday!

1) I had dinner with brother Ben on Tuesday night! It was a spontaneous dinner appointment, but those are the best, right? Especially when those dinners involve small-plate-sharing and carrot cake.

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eggplant with yu xiang glaze, puffed rice, and peach + spiced beef shank with tomatoes, seared halloumi cheese, chiles, and garlic

P.S. Thanks for waiting for me to take photos, Ben.

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Carrot cake with carrot marmalade, spiced frosting, and pecan brittle

I was all excited to take my brother out for dinner since I actually made a little bit o’ money this past weekend, but then I realized that I didn’t bring my wallet with me. The SHAME. I’ve promised to pay for the next two times we eat together.

2) Remember that planner I was so excited to use during college when I bought it this summer? Well, I think I’ve used it an average of once per week, and that’s really forcing myself. All my to-do’s and appointments are either in my iPhone calendar or on the white board in my dorm room, so the planner gets neglected. Oops.

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3) On the topic of school, can standing desks please be a thing sometime soon? Four hours straight of sitting in class is not cool. I’m not even worried about the whole “sitting is the new smoking” issue at this point. I just like to have circulation in my legs and to not fidget in my seat like a five-year-old. Just put one of these babies in the back of the lecture hall, and I’d be overjoyed:il_570xN.492795644_ejno

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4) I’m over halfway through with my first semester of college, wut.

5) Halloween is this Friday! There shall be candy {Reese’s} consumed, costumes worn, and monsters mashed. I was discussing my plans with Daliza yesterday:

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Yeah, we WILL turn up, Daliza. And I don’t know if I should be a ninja for Halloween, because I don’t want to dress up as something I already am in real life, ya know?….

6) My roommate and I kind of love this idea from Gina to dress up as Richard Simmons though.

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via la Fitnessista

Those shorts.

7) I’ve been trying out normal-people toppings on my pancakes and French toast like butter + honey, and I actually love it! Normally I put peanut butter on everything, but I’ve enjoyed mixing things up a bit. I even like to have eggs/omelets for breakfast now— who am I?!

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The butter in the dining halls is delicious— Cabot butter apparently. It’s strangely reminiscent of goat cheese… So maybe the fact that I love that on my pancakes still makes me weird.

8) I’ve become friends with the lady at the swipe-in entrance of the dining hall in the mornings, as well as the lady who makes the pancakes and French toast. They’re awesome.

9) The left side of my body is breaking or something. My left shoulder is grinding more than ever (remember when I brought that up way back when?), my left hip is always popping/feeling very tight, and yesterday my left knee started clicking when I was doing these kinds of sit-ups! I need a physical therapist (heh heh).

10) I hope you all have a wonderful day! Smile, sing your favorite song, and take a nap if you can. ♥

So tell me:

How do you feel about sitting for long periods of time?

What are your plans for Halloween?

What do you like to put on your pancakes/French toast/waffles?

Current Simple Joys

Morning!

How are you all doing so far this week? I don’t know about you guys, but yesterday was just so…Monday. Like, a very Monday kind of Monday, ya feel? I got ready with my eyes half closed and nearly (just nearly, don’t worry, mom and dad) nodded off at least 20 times during statistics, BUT it was still a great day overall thanks to many simple joys that outweighed those Monday blues.

It’s been a long time since I shared my current simple joys (January was the last time!), so I thought today would be the perfect day to share those with you all. There’s always something to be thankful for in this whirlwind we call life.

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Current simple joys…

  • Power naps (came to the rescue for me yesterday, holla)
  • Cooking real food in a real kitchen and picking up groceries from Trader Joe’s (for the people I work for, not for myself…but still so fun!)

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Lasagna!!! (It was my first time making it ever and I pray that I didn’t mess it up for them.)

  • Finally “getting” a statistics problem that initially made me want to blow up my computer/textbook #probabilityrage
  • MARCEL THE SHELL THREE
  • Free KIND bars for showing my squat form at the Physical Therapy fitness fair

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  • Sunny, warm days in late October
  • Outdoor workouts on said days

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  • FaceTiming with family and friends
  • Really awesome hugs
  • Singing with some of my coolest friends at church on Sunday
  • A surprise care package from my little cousins, aunt, and uncle! Cookieeeeeees ♥ (whole wheat too, because my aunt knows what’s up)

  • When the dining hall has an arsenal of bananas (my heart breaks ever so slightly when there are none available at breakfast)
  • People who hold the door (bonus points if they smile)
  • Raisin bran for dessert (stop cringing/laughing at me)

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  • When there is no one on the escalator so you can walk up, because walking up an escalator is empowering with all that extra upward momentum
  • This message from my bro when I was studying away on Sunday night:

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I should do these kinds of posts more often, because now I am just so happy despite the fact that my eyes are fluttering shut as I type this on Monday night.

Have a wonderful day, friends! :)

So tell me:

Some of your current simple joys!

Do you eat cereal for dessert sometimes?

How was your Monday?

Weekly Moves and Grooves IX

Hello, lovely people!

The sun has decided to come out from behind the clouds this weekend! It was a dreary, rainy week here in Boston, so we are overjoyed that there’s some light in our life (despite midterms and essays).

First and foremost, I want to announce the winner of the Arctic Zero giveaway!

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Phoebe! Congrats! Shoot me an email at dailymovesandgrooves [at] gmail [dot] com !

(Remember how typing out emails like that ^^^ prevents spam? I feel like I need to say that each time so people don’t think I’m weirder than I already am.)

Business is done now, so let’s move on to this past week’s workouts!

weekly moves and grooves

Sunday

5 min. stairmaster warmup + leg workout

3 supersets of each:

  • 10-12 pistol squats each leg + 20 jump lunges
  • 10-12 hamstring curls (80#) + 12 squat curtsy lunge jumps (the second exercise in this video)
  • 10 squats (100#) + 20 alternating sumo/narrow squat jumps

100 lbs. is actually the heaviest weight I’ve ever squatted! I don’t typically go to the gym with other people, so I’ve always been afraid of putting too heavy of a load on the bar, not being able to come up, and making a fool out of myself when I have to drop the bar. I should get a squat buddy.

Also, those alternating squat jumps burn so much more than regular squat jumps!

Monday

pushups in the dorm + 15 minutes abs

My abs became pretty sore the next day!

Tuesday

burpees in the rain + 20 min AMRAP workout from Lori and Michelle

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The physical therapy grad students were having a fitness fair in the middle of campus, and there was a BURPEE CONTEST. Obviously it was calling my name, so I took the challenge of doing as many {half} burpees as possible in 30 seconds…in the rain. They didn’t require the pushup, so it didn’t feel like a true burpee, but I ended up doing 19! They told me I won the whole thing because they were packing up and it started to torrentially pour. I won raffle tickets. It was fun!

dorm workout

 

After I quasi-napped in my dorm, I did a quick bodyweight workout that left me a lot more sweaty than I expected! Like, dripping off mah face and all over our carpeted floors. Sorry, roomie.

Wednesday

Rest

Thursday

5 min. row + “Warmup” WOD + upper body strength + yoga + volleyball

Upper body strength included vertical rows, bicep curls, Arnold presses, lat pull-downs, and tricep dips.

This was my first day playing intramural volleyball with some people from the Catholic center! I had a lot of fun even though we were kinda really had a rough time the first two games. But we won the third game, so that’s all we are going to think about!

Friday

10 min. adaptive motion trainer + HIIT power workout from Lori and Michelle

This was rough to get through, and I feel like I should have taken another rest day, but it was still a good one!

Saturday

Rest {lots of walking}

Looking back on this week, it appears to be a lighter week of workouts, but school and activities kept me on my toes.

I hope you all have a magnificent Sunday! Get some fresh air, eat something delicious, and thank the Lord for His great blessings!

So tell me:

What are you up to today?

Gym, choir, church, fundraising stuff, and STUDYING!

 

What was your favorite workout of the week?

WIAW: Finally Balanced

Hello, friends!

It feels as if I have not done a What I Ate Wednesday post in ages! That just means I’ve been accumulating way too many food photos on my phone, and I need to finally share them with the world. All my friends who witness me taking photos of my food ask the ever-famous question: “Is it going on the blog?!”

Yes. Right now.

I’ll be the first to admit that I self-stalk on Instagram. I look back at my feed and reminisce on memories of high school, home-cooked meals, and how bad of an Instagrammer I was three years ago (pointless selfies for dayzzz). The thing that really got me though was how much my eating has changed in the past two years. If you were not aware, I struggled with disordered eating habits just a couple years ago, and I started this blog in the midst of my recovery.

When I was scrolling through my own Instagram feed, I realized how much the quantity and substance of my meals has increased over time:

Two years ago, my dinner would be a salad with some peppers, berries, and cheese. That’s it. I’m not saying that having only a salad for dinner is bad, but I knew that I was hungry for more, and I didn’t honor that.

One year ago, my dinner was usually a bowl of whole grains, one piece of protein, and a vegetable. I was satisfied with that. I ate desserts more often, but sometimes with guilt.

Half a year ago, I would add some more healthy fats like avocado and cheese into my meals. Maybe a little more peanut butter in that oatmeal. I was satisfied, but still cautious with the new additions. I did eat dessert without much guilt at all though.

Today, I don’t always have whole grains, but I try my best to eat them more often than not. I eat red meat. I make my desserts a la mode. I eat *gasp* TWO tablespoons of peanut butter at breakfast on most days.

And you know what else about today? I’ve never felt better in my life. It’s taken me a lot of time to truly internalize that food=fuel. I could have said it all day long in the past, but I would still keep the general thought of calories in the back of my mind. Here in college I have no idea how many calories I’ve been eating, but whatever the average number is, it seems to be working out for the best!

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Linking up to Jenn‘s weekly food fiesta!

With that, why don’t we get to the food, eh? :) Here are just some of the things I’ve been enjoying this past month:

Bringing more peanut butter to the table…

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Clockwise from top right:

scrambled eggs + potatoes + ketchup + apple + unpictured bowl of granola with milk // whole wheat French toast with pb + my favorite cottage cheese concoction + glass o’ milk // whole grain blueberry pancake with pb + the usual + glass o’ milk // oatmeal with jam and pb + the usual

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Dorm breakfasts: Greek yogurt with banana, honey and cinnamon // oatmeal with vanilla protein powder, banana, cinnamon, and pb

Non-meat options…

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whole wheat roasted vegetable calzone + salad with hard boiled eggs // fish with sweet potatoes and summer squash // bean stew with polenta + salad // crispy baked fish with veggies + salad

Meaty options…

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“Shepherd’s pie” with mashed sweet potato // grilled chicken over a kale panzanella // bone-in, skin-on chicken + mashed potatoes + collard greens // Asian salisbury steak with soba noodles

Comfort food…

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whole wheat sesame chicken pizza // whole wheat spaghetti bolognese // eggplant caprese stack // brisket + mashed potatoes + roasted root veggies

ALL the plants…

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salads (which are often accompaniments to a main dish) // moroccan veggie stew over couscous

Desserts of course…

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“brownstone” chocolate cake (best chocolate cake EVER) // bananas foster crisp a la mode (holymolyamazing) // free chocolate chip cookie a la Catholic Center missionaries // gingerbread cake a la mode

I’m eating more than I ever have, but I only feel better when I am nourishing myself properly, despite temptations to eat like the girl next to me. Have I thrown nutrition out the window? Absolutely not. Do I stress about whole grains and squeaky “clean” eats at every meal. Heck no. I feel like I am finally balanced.

Well that was a long WIAW. I guess I just wanted to make up for the lack of WIAW’s these past several weeks. ;)

Hope you all have a lovely Wednesday!

So tell me:

Has your eating evolved at all?

What is your idea of a balanced diet?

What is the best dessert you’ve had recently?

P.S. Have you entered the Arctic Zero giveaway?

Arctic Zero Review + Giveaway!

Disclaimer: Arctic Zero sent me 6 pints of their newest flavors to try in exchange for a review. You bet your bottom dollar all opinions are completely honest and my own as usual!

Once upon a time, I finished 6 pints of Arctic Zero ice cream in two weeks all by myself.

This post is quite a bit overdue since that time was several weeks ago, but I knew I wanted to write a review on the frozen treats that Arctic Zero so kindly sent to me. It was a great day when I got back from the gym to a package filled with dry ice and pints of sweetness!

I think the fact that I polished off every single one of these babies within two weeks without a problem indicates that I really liked these. I promise I shared some with my roommate/floormates!

Arctic Zero’s Mission

Arctic Zero sought from its inception to offer families across America a low calorie dessert that would allow them to indulge in their frozen sweet tooth cravings without sacrificing a healthy lifestyle. As health issues rise across the country such as diabetes and obesity, Arctic Zero confronts this trend by providing a product that displaces the myth that a dessert must be high in fat and calories in order to taste good.

{From the “About Us” page on the Arctic Zero website!}

Arctic Zero’s frozen treats are made with minimal ingredients (purified water being the first on the list!) that are wholesome and meant to boost your health rather than pull you into that dairy/sugar coma. All their ice creams are 150 calories per PINT, fat free, lactose free, and gluten free! 

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For the Salted Caramel flavor

What did I think?

Arctic Zero sent me three of their brand-spankin’-new flavors: Coconut, Orange Cream, and Salted Caramel. Yeah, the sound of those flavors made me pretty stoked. Here’s what I thought about each of the flavors:

  • Coconut: This was the first one I tried from the batch. The coconut flavor is definitely present but without the fatty richness you would typically get from coconut desserts. It’s more like a milder coconut sorbet.
  • Orange Cream: Creamsicles were my JAM when I was younger, so I was super excited about this flavor. The AZ version wasn’t quite exactly like the classic creamsicle, but I enjoyed it as a low-sugar option.
  • Salted Caramel: I think this was my favorite! The ingredients actually include a little bit of cocoa powder, so the flavor seemed like a mixture of caramel and mocha (I don’t even like coffee!). It worked.

Overall, the flavors are true to how they are advertised on the pints. That being said, the low-sugar, fat free aspect of Arctic Zero frozen treats makes the flavors much more mild and “watered down” than what you would normally get in regular ice cream. I didn’t mind though, because these are almost like palate cleansers. Sweet, but not so sweet that you can’t have it as an afternoon or midnight snack!

As for the texture, I must note that Arctic Zero ice cream (or any ice cream for that matter) tastes best when you let it thaw for 5-10 minutes. I was expecting AZ to be icy because of the lack of fat, but it’s surprisingly creamy! I think that can be attributed to the whey protein powder in it. It’s not like classic ice cream for sure, but it’s almost like a thick frosty if you wait until it’s slightly melty on the sides (that’s the best!).

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Would I buy Arctic Zero?

Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed the Arctic Zero frozen treats (evidenced by how quickly I consumed them), so I would totally try some of their other flavors if I found them in a store. That being said, Arctic Zero ice cream does not compare to real deal ice cream, so I would not expect a Haagen Dazs experience when you eat these. It is a nice sweet, frozen treat to have when you’re craving just that, except you have nutrition benefits too!

And c’mon, it’s fun to finish a whole pint in one sitting for only 150 calories ;) I do miss digging my spoon right into the pint.

Where can you buy Arctic Zero?

I have never actually seen Arctic Zero in stores, but they have a store locator on their website right here! You can also order online here.

Giveaway!

Arctic Zero is being awesome per usual and giving away two vouchers for Arctic Zero products to two lucky winners (two vouchers per person)! If you would like a chance to win, comment below telling me which flavor of Arctic Zero you would most like to try! I will announce the two winners on Sunday.

{Open to U.S. only}

Have a fabulous Tuesday, everyone!