Starting Monday Feeling Refreshed

Brooklyn Brownstones Happy Monday gang!

I hope you guys had a wonderful weekend. We stayed local this weekend, enjoying a relaxing few days in Brooklyn with Bo’s parents. They decided to stop here for a few days on their way to Maine, the next stop on their road trip. A weekend in town was just what I needed after last week’s work travel.  Even though we had visitors, our weekend was still very relaxing. Since our parents visit us in Brooklyn frequently, we can spend the time grilling and exploring the neighborhood versus rushing to tourist attractions. It sure felt nice to wake up this morning feeling refreshed instead of exhausted!

Like most of the United States, Brooklyn was under the heat dome and daily temperatures were in the mid-90’s before the heat index! When Bo’s mom is in town she and I often start the day with a long walk. We stuck to Brooklyn’s tree-lined streets and the waterfront for each of our five mile walks this weekend.  Yesterday I found myself craving a run, even though it was already 90 degrees at 2pm.  By keeping the pace slower than normal and running in the shade, I actually enjoyed this hot run. This green juice tasted amazing at the end of the sweaty run!

juice press

We spent a lot of time in the kitchen and backyard this weekend cooking and grilling together.  Thursday night we had grilled swordfish, asparagus and green beans. Friday night we grilled Branzino for the first time – a fun and delicious challenge. Saturday night we spent longer in the kitchen getting creative with a tuna tartare appetizer, sweet onion and peach chutney to serve with the pork chop, corn sautee and finally the most delicious oatmeal cookie recipe. Last but not least, Sunday night we made rosemary chimichurri  and char-grilled baby eggplants – yum!
Tuna tartare

oatmeal cookies

flank steak

My goal for this week is to stick with my workout plan as I am craving endorphins in a big way.  I haven’t locked into any specific workouts other than tonight’s Bar Method class and tomorrow morning’s 6 mile run with Katie as I am giving myself a bit of leeway in regards to the workouts as long as I enjoy a solid workout six days this week.

Your turn: What is your goal this week? 

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Cherry Vanilla Protein Smoothie & Bob’s Red Mill Giveaway

Cherry Vanilla Protein Smoothie
After hot, sweaty Summer runs the only thing I crave is a smoothie. Most morning’s I will walk directly to the kitchen following a run to whip up a breakfast smoothie bowl even before taking a shower. Recovery from both the heat and the workout happen much faster if I eat something with carbohydrates and protein within thirty minutes of completing a workout.

Bob's Red Mill Vanilla Protein Powder

When the teams at Fit Approach and Bob’s Red Mill challenged me to showcase how their protein powders help me find balance among the summer chaos, I knew a quick, delicious and refreshing smoothie would be the perfect recipe to share with you guys. Since this smoothie takes just a few minutes to make from start to finish, it’s easy to make for breakfast, an afternoon snack or as a post-workout powerhouse. The box I received from Bob’s Red Mill included protein powder (chocolate, vanilla and chai) as well as a protein & fiber nutritional booster.  Each flavor of protein powder is plant based, gluten free, vegan and includes not only powder but also chia seeds, probiotics and amino acids.  The nutritional stats for the vanilla protein powder. which I used in this recipe. are quite impressive – 180 calories, 20 grams of protein, 12 grams of fiber and only 3 grams of sugar.

Smoothie Bowl

Cherry Vanilla Protein Smoothie 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup frozen or fresh (pitted) cherries
  • 1/4 cup ice
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1/2 cup Almond Milk or your choice of liquid (milk, water, etc)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup Bob’s Red Mill Vanilla Protein powder
  • 1 scoop Vital Proteins or other collagen peptides
  • Optional toppings – goji berries, shredded coconut, granola or cherries

Directions

    • Add first eight items to blender and pulse or blend until you reach desired consistency.
    • Pour into bowl
    • Top with your favorite optional toppings. I suggest some dried goji berries and Purely Elizabeth granola.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you to Bob’s Red Mill and FitApproach for sponsoring this post. As always, all opinions are my own. 

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30 Minute Treadmill Workout & Cincinnati Eats

Hi guys! As promised, I wanted to share a sneak into the rest of my trip in Cincinnati.

green smoothie

On Tuesday and Wednesday, I ensured that I had a healthy breakfast and lunch as well as limited snacking so that I could enjoy dinner or happy hours with my colleagues. Tuesday morning I was delighted to see that Ingredients, the restaurant in the Westin Cincinnati, had a green smoothie on their menu. I ordered it to go, sipping it while I walked to the office. The thick, cool smoothie included almond Milk, Kale, Spinach, Banana and protein powder. Our catered lunch included sandwiches and chips so I did my best to choose a healthy option that would also not leave me starving – half a turkey sandwich, a handful of plain chips, celery and carrot sticks and a dollop of hummus. Since we had to be in meetings first thing Wednesday morning, I wanted something I could eat while walking to the office. Our group met at Starbucks to grab coffee and while there I picked up my old favorite – Starbucks Egg White Feta Wrap, banana and skim cappuccino.  Instead of waiting in the long buffet lunch line on Wednesday a few of us dashed down the block to The ‘Wich, a delicious, downtown sandwich and salad shop. Each time I go here for lunch I’m amazed by the flavors and price as their 11 huge salads are less than $8.99 and include one of the side items. If you like Greek salads their dressing is delicious!

The Wich Cincinnati

Tuesday night our team dinner was at Nada, a popular Mexican restaurant in downtown Cincinnati that has been open for eight years. While many other downtown have changed over the years, this fun and funky Mexican restaurant seems to still be going strong. Even though the menu changes more frequently than the seasons, the guacamole and margaritas are always delicious. After a long day of meetings and lots to celebrate with the team, I toasted with one of their house margaritas before enjoying the chips, guacamole and the El Jefe salad. This entree salad includes mixed greens, grilled chicken, shredded queso Fresco, avocado, pico and creamy like dressing – yum!

Nada El Jefe SaladThe highlight of the meal were their thick, perfectly salted chips. It’s a good thing they don’t sell these by the bag!  Any time I fly out of the Cincinnati airport I often stop at Chick-Fil-A as it is such a rare treat. I wasn’t in the mood for another salad so I ordered their Grilled Chicken Sandwich and shared a small order of waffle fries with my colleague.

Workout wise, I almost skipped Wednesday’s workout in favor of more sleep, but I knew that a quick run would give me a lot more energy than 30-minutes of sleep especially since I would be sitting for 11 hours during our conference. I find that treadmills are far less boring if I have an interval workout that keeps things changing the entire run.

30 minute treadmill workout

This 30 minute run was inspired by Mile High Run Club as it combined hills and speed. Since it was 3.1 mile it also served as the perfect opportunity to do my first Rock’N’Roll Virtual Run 5k – Making A Band.

Making A Band 5k Run

Thumbs up for a healthier than normal business trip to Cincinnati! Moderation is truly the name of the game for me, as I do not want to sacrifice toasting the group with a margarita nor find myself snacking aimlessly.

Your turn – Team Chick-Fil-A grilled chicken or fried chicken? I’m grilled all the way! 

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