Birthday Party: Protein Pancakes!

Birthday Protein Pancakes

Judging by the sprinkles, it’s obvious that there’s some type of a special occasion going on here 😉 … Yesterday was my birthday, woo! Anyway, in order to make it somewhat invigorating, I decided to decorate my standard protein pancakes with colorful sprinkles and mask the picture with an exciting filter.

My diet has been all out of wack this week due to dinners and festivities, etc.  (I’m a diva and my birthday lasts an average of 2 weeks).  AND because of all the extra cake calories, I’ve been getting in some KILLER workouts and super intense HIIT sessions.  I’ve also been drinking lots of citrus water (lemons, limes) to detox from the shenanigans. Remember, it all evens itself out in the end 🙂

This morning, to keep the spirit of celebration alive (obviously) I decided to make my normal protein pancakes with some color!

Here’s my recipe:

1/2c. oats

1/2 scoop protein powder (I used 1 scoop of Optimum Nutrition Protein Energy- Cinnamon, Macros are 1C/1F/10P- Cellucor and Quest protein powders cook really well, also)

1/4c pumpkin puree (really helps with texture and it’s low cal with a big punch of Vitamin A)

3/4c egg whites (6 egg whites)

1/8tsp baking powder

MACROS-  315cal:  34C/4F/36P (without the sprinkles! lol)

Directions: Blend about 10 seconds in magic bullet and put on skillet like a regular pancake! Makes 3-4 medium size pancakes

*I usually add Walden Farms Sugar Free Syrup but they taste fine alone!

**They are also good if you make them for the week and prep them each day as a snack

***Amazing post-workout recovery meal!!

Do you have a go-to protein pancake recipe you love? Any other quick and easy protein recipes? Please share!!

Have a wonderful day!

Michelle

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My Favorite Exercise

Deadlift

Hi! I hope everyone had a lovely weekend! I’m going to keep this post short, sweet, and to the point! 🙂

I wanna talk about my favorite exercise: Straight Leg Deadlifts

Do you have a go-to exercise that you LOVE? Like if it were up to you and you weren’t sore from the day before you would do it every single day?  That’s straight leg deadlifts for me.  Because of the intensity of the exercise, I’ve limited myself to twice a week– once on back day and again on leg day.  I switch up my style of training for each day so that burn never goes away 😉

On back days, I go for reps.  Generally I will pick a heavy, but not too heavy,  weight and go for 4 sets of 25 reps.  I’ll go a little quick and focus on keeping my back as straight as possible.

On leg days, I go for strength.  This is when I’ll do a hypertrophy style routine with slightly heavier weight each set.  Normally, I’ll warm up with 15 reps and go 12-10-8-6, increasing the weight each time.  Here, I’ll go a little slower and try to keep my legs as straight as possible so my glutes and hamstrings are heavily involved.

REMEMBER: Form is always the most important part of perfecting any exercise.  I suggest starting off with a light bar or dumbbells and get your form down and then begin to increase the weight.  Because straight leg dead lifts heavily target your back, be careful going too heavy!

Do you have an exercise you can’t get enough of? Do you do it more than once a week? Let me know what it is in the comments below 🙂

Michelle

High Intensity Fun!

Doesn’t this title sound invigorating? Maybe I’m just really enthusiastic and the word “intensity” gets me excited.  Regardless, I want to talk about HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training).jumping track

Throughout high school and college, I ran track and field and competed as a long and triple jumper.  In college, our off-season program would consist of different sprinting routines (either uphill, 100m, 200m) 2-3x/ week.  Those days would be accompanied by a weight lifting session and other other days were either recovery days or days spent completely off.  We never ran long distances and our workouts never lasted longer than a half hour.  I WAS IN HELLA GOOD SHAPE.

After doing long duration cardio from training for my first figure show (I’ll post about this sometime in the near future) and from half marathon training, I forgot how amazing sprinting felt… Not to mention how efficient and time saving it was.

Recently, I’ve been doing a great deal of research on HIIT and while opinions may be mixed on the duration and intensity level of the sprint, it is without a doubt the most effective cardio workout you can do. WHY? So glad you asked…

1. HIIT allows you do metabolize fat all day 

-Similar to the after burn of lifting weights, you will still be burning calories after you complete your workout session.

2. It saves you time

-I am DRIPPING  after 20 minutes of HIIT… Walking on the treadmill for a full hour doesn’t even give me that level of sweat satisfaction.

3. You keep more muscle!

-You’ve worked hard for the muscles you have! Excessive cardio can break down muscle tissue due to long duration repetitive movements.  HIIT minimizes muscle loss while maximizing fat loss.

If you’re interested in learning more, check out this podcast by Layne Norton, he knows his stuff!

WORKOUT PARTY TIME!

I tell all my clients looking to build muscle and burn fat to do intervals.  Although they hate me when we make our way over to the treadmill, they know they get in a good workout every time! Interested in interval training? Download the Interval Timer App (it’s free!).  You can set up how many intervals you want to do and the duration of the low/high intensity.  ALSO, you can close the app and listen to music and it will beep every time you have to change the intensity! (I am in no way affiliated with this app I just think it’s awesome)

interval timer

I recommend starting off with a 5:00 walking warmup followed by a HIGH intensity duration of :30 and a LOW intensity duration of 1:00-2:00.  It really depends on your fitness level and your speed but :30 should be difficult.  Repeat as many times as you see fit.  I recommend starting off x6 and increase the intensity or decrease rest each week.  Play around with it and see how your body reacts to weekly changes.  You can do this on a stationary bike, treadmill, on a track…it’s up to you!

Do you do intervals? If you do, how often do you incorporate them into your weekly workout routine? Any suggestions for workouts? Any interesting articles? If you’ve never tried them, give ’em a go and let me know what you think!

Have a great day!

Michelle

MEAL PREP PARTY: Quick and Cheap Meal Prep!

Happy Sunday, Folks!

Raise your hand if you meal prep! (I wish I had a hand raising up emoji to insert).

If you don’t, why not? Is it because it takes forever? You’d rather spend your weekend sleeping? Are meat and vegetables too expensive? OR is it because, in your mind, 4-day-old grilled chicken tastes like the rubber sole of your shoe after a long run in the middle of July?

Regardless, meal prepping is YOUR key to success.  Having your healthy food already prepared at the beginning of the week will save you lots of time, money, and calories (everyone’s 3 favorite things to save!).  So let’s get started, shall we?

TIP 1- Look at the weekly ad ahead of time

Sometimes, I’ll go shopping on both Saturday and Sunday (at my supermarket, the weekly deals change from Saturday to Sunday).  If chicken is $1.99 on Saturday, I’ll go then before it jumps to $2.99 the following week.  By mapping out what I am going to buy on certain days, I can get in and out of the supermarket in less than 20 minutes a pop. (Depending on the lines)

TIP 2- Buy your snacks in bulk

I’ll go to Costco and buy a big 3-lb bag of almonds.  It lasts for a while and I’ll portion out about 20 ziplock bags at a time (15 almonds = ~100cals).  I’ll grab 2 for the day that way I have a healthy snack whenever I get hungry.  I also buy the big canisters of oatmeal and the big packs of egg white cartons for 2 weeks.

TIP 3- Frozen steamable veggies and brown rice are your lifesaver

Can’t stand frozen broccoli? Try frozen green beans. I am obsessed. One bag usually only costs $1 and it’s good for 2-3 servings.  Same thing with your brown rice. You can steam the veggies in the bag while you’re prepping your other food. ( DISCLAIMER: Please make sure you get steam-in-bag vegetables, otherwise it’s a complete disaster and you’ll taste the plastic in the back of your throat for a good month)   You will become the expert multi-tasker.

OKAY, enough tips.  Ready to spend just $60 for a week of food for 2 people and prep it in less than an hour? LET’S GOOOOOO

MEAL PREP PARTY SHOPPING:

PROTEINS:

1 package of chicken cutlets $1.99/lb- (~$6.00)

2 packages 93% lean ground turkey ($7.00 total)

1 2-lb bag frozen tilapia ($8.00)

Egg white cartons ($4.00)

VEGETABLES:

5 bags frozen green beans ($5.00)

5lbs broccoli crowns .99/lb ($5.00)

Extra large bag spinach or kale ($5.00)

STARCHES:

10 bags frozen brown rice ($10.00)

Large canister of quick oats ($3.00)

OTHER:

1 jar of salsa ($3.00)

_______

TOTAL- $56.00

It’s normally cheaper than that ^ AND I’ll usually have the big bag of almonds already, so I didn’t add it in.

MEALS:

MEAL 1: SALSA CHICKEN

-In a crockpot (best investment you’ll ever make) throw your package of chicken (trim off the fat before) and jar of salsa in it.  Add a little water to the salsa jar to rinse out all the leftover salsa and throw that in the crockpot so no part of the chicken isn’t covered.  Cook on LOW for 8 hours. DONE. *I recommend doing this overnight or first thing in the AM

MEAL 2: GROUND TURKEY

-In a dutch oven or big skillet, throw both packs of turkey with a little bit of olive oil.  Mix around and cook til its brown and ready.  After it’s all cooked, remove it from the flame and throw seasonings on.  I recommend Flavor God or Mrs. Dash.  Mix it all up. DONE.

MEAL 3: TILAPIA

-While you’re prepping your other 2 proteins, start defrosting the frozen tilapia in a big bowl and preheat the oven to 425.  It should be thawed in about 15 min. Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Put the fish on the tray and spray again with cooking spray and put whatever spices you want on top.  Throw in the oven for 10 minutes, flip the fish, add more seasonings, cook for another 10 minutes.  DONE.

  • For the rest of the prep, I steam everything.  I’ll start off throwing a steam rice bag in microwave.  Every 4 minutes, I take one out and put another one in.  At the end, I’ll empty all the bags of rice in a big bowl and add salt.  Then i measure and put it with a protein.
  • I will steam or cook veggies for 1-2 days.  I don’t like having steamed vegetables cooked and sitting around in the fridge all week so I’ll take 5 minutes in the morning to steam them and portion them out accordingly.
  • For snacks I’ll have almonds, bars, and protein shakes (Almonds will already be pre-portioned).

meal prep

So there you have it.  My meal prep.  Like I said, it really only takes me an hour, aside from the slow cooked chicken.  But this has been my go-to prep, especially during the winter and I can’t/don’t want to go outside to grill chicken.  If you have any questions, or any mind-blowingly awesome tips I WANT TO HEAR THEM.  If you’ve never tried salsa chicken, stop what you’re doing right now and make it. If you don’t meal prep, try it.  Even if it’s just for one meal.  You’ll be thankful once you realize you saved $50 from not going to the salad bar all week.

Have a great weekend!

Michelle

Circuit Training

abs again

I am ALWAYS switching up workouts.  Whether it be for myself or for my clients, I love playing around with different techniques and seeing how my body (or my clients’ bodies) react to it.  Recently, I’ve put together a 3-week circuit training program for myself to give my body a break from heavy lifting and hopefully shed some fat in the process. Here’s my week-by-week breakdown:

DAY 1- CIRCUIT TRAINING

DAY 2- HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) Cardio

DAY 3- Active Rest

DAY 4- CIRCUIT TRAINING

DAY 5- HEAVY LIFTING (Leg day)

DAY 6- HIIT Cardio

DAY 7- Full Rest/ Recovery Day

This breakdown helps to kick my metabolism into high gear! By incorporating two rest days throughout the week, I can allow my muscles to recover after tough workouts and high intensity exercises.  Also, I’m keeping my carbs relatively low except on my first Circuit Day (Day 1) and Leg Day (Day 5), mimicking a carb-cycling diet plan.

An example circuit is as follows:

EACH EXERCISE: 3 ROUNDS X10-15

1. Squat to Shoulder Press

2. Battle Ropes

3. Pushups

4. Mountain Climbers

5. Lunges in place

6. Jump Squats

7. Dips

8. Jumping Jacks with weights

9. Pullups

10. Burpees

REST 1 MINUTE (Or however long you need)

– I generally like to alternate between strength/resistance exercises and cardio based exercises. So if you are particular to certain exercises that weren’t mentioned above you can always swap em out or add em.  You can also add/subtract reps and sets depending on your fitness level.

Let me know what you think, but this is a fun little program to get you til the end of the month. I guarantee you’ll be sweating!

Michelle

You’re invited to the Workout Party!

Hi! Welcome to my new blog! My name is Michelle, what’s yours?

I’m a 25 year old personal trainer, figure competitor, and lover of all things neon.  I am a strong believer that working out should be enjoyable, otherwise, why would you do it? I started the Workout Party for a few reasons:

1. I have a degree in English so before I forget all my grammar and witty writing skills, I figured I should start writing something.

2. Adding “Party” to the end of Workout makes it seem just a little bit less mundane and certainly more exciting.  Also, working out should be fun and If I called this site “Workout Prison” you wouldn’t be reading this right now.

3. I want to share my knowledge with you, even though I don’t know you. Yet.

I’m throwing a Workout Party and YOU are invited! Welcome 🙂

Michelle