Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Fitness Food (Protein Pancakes) & New Blog Friends

My blog tends to reflect my life, and since I've been getting more involved in fitness and healthy eating, I wanted to interject a few fitness posts.  I have no formal training in exercise or nutrition, but I have lost the 55 pounds I gained during pregnancy (albeit slowly), and have managed to gain back a lot of the muscle tone I lost.  It's been a long, difficult road paved one day at a time, but definitely worth it to feel confident in your skin.  (Speaking of skin, that post-pregnancy extra belly skin is a whole other post- I have it too, but the picture below kinda camouflages it).

One of the main components to getting or staying in shape is eating clean, healthy foods every few hours.  I've read that it's best to start the day with breakfast within 30 minutes to one hour of waking to jump start your metabolism for the day.  When your body doesn't get food for several hours (as in while you are sleeping), it shifts into starvation mode and stores fat.  I think explained it well: "Skipping breakfast or eating too little forces your body to switch into conservation mode and burn fewer calories, which means you're more likely to hang onto body fat."

I love to wake up and enjoy a fresh brewed cup of coffee.  If I don't eat breakfast first though, the coffee suppresses my appetite and I'm not hungry for breakfast and end up skipping it or eating too little, like a single piece of toast.  So now, I wake up, eat breakfast right away, THEN enjoy my coffee.

Lately, in an effort to up my protein intake, I've been making protein pancakes for breakfast.  I find it's easiest to find one thing you like for breakfast that you can eat everyday (for at least a while before switching it up) so that it becomes automatic and you don't have to think about, "What am I going to eat this morning?"

Ingredients (*makes one large pancake)

Oats (finely ground in the food processor, about 1/4 - 1/2 cup) I keep a container full of ground oats on hand and just scoop them out each day.

4 Egg whites or 2 Whole eggs I use "All Whites"- they come in a carton and are sold by the real eggs

Cinnamon (to taste)

Vanilla (optional)

I spray the pan with nonstick spray, pour all the batter in, and cook just like you would a regular pancake. Be forewarned that the texture of the final result is more dense and less "cakey" than a regular flap jack.

Also, I spread a thin layer of natural peanut butter on top (maybe a tablespoon?) and add about two tablespoons of sugar free syrup.  I like it and James does too!

There are other versions of protein pancakes you can try (many add protein powder and/or cottage cheese), but I really like mine and they are so simple.  I came across this one, and it looked pretty tasty (but had lots more ingredients).

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I went to the Neiman Marcus beauty event last night and the highlight was definitely getting to meet and chat with Sam (The Peak of Tres Chic) and Paloma (La Dolce Vita).  Sam is seriously adorable and, conveniently, lives right by me!  She's a busy girl with design school, work, and her fantastic blog, but I'm hoping we get to meet up for a run soon.  Check out her blog for some serious design fun and lots of stylish fashion too.

Many of you know that Paloma's blog was the very first blog I ever read (before I even knew what a blog was) and, after I stumbled upon it, I spent hours going backwards and!  Meeting her in person was a little surreal after reading her blog for 4 years.  I'm not surprised that she has found such success with her blog and endeavors as she was completely friendly and classy.  Not to mention stunning.  I'm so happy I finally got to meet her in person!  

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And because I can't resist, one more thing I love about The Voice, is watching the family watching their husband, wife, son, daughter, sister, or brother perform.  All that raw emotion gets me every time.  

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