Friday, December 30, 2011

Friday Favourites: The Best of 2011

Travelling around the blog world, I have seen a lot of "Best of..." posts this past week.

I actually really like these as it reminds me of some great recipes and tips I may have forgotten or introduces me to other posts I may have missed all together. I like them so much, I decided to do one of my own.

2011 has been a slice, but I am looking forward to 2012 and all of the new possibilities that it may bring. (Stay tuned for my new inspiration board next week!)

For now, here are a few of my favourite posts from the blog this year.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

How to Beat the Holiday Hangover

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and got to spend time with family and friends.

Mine was fun and I am pretty sure I have eaten my weight in turkey, stuffing and various goodies over the last few days.

Do I feel guilty about it?  Not at all. 

This is the time of year when we really need to cut ourselves a little slack.  Life is all about balance.  A few days of making merry with food and drink is not going to make or break your otherwise healthy lifestyle. 

However, after a few days, you might find that the body is starting to feel a bit sluggish as it is not used to such copious amounts of comfort food.

Here are a few tips to help keep you feeling your best and we approach even more celebrations for the new year.


Ditch the guilt.  As I mentioned above, you need to give yourself permission to indulge.  It is only once a year, so enjoy. ;)

Drink lots of water.  I think this one is pretty self explanatory.

Do short bursts of activity throughout the day.  When you are feeling tired and full, it is very easy to be content with laying on the couch.   Get up and go for a walk with your family.  Do a quick HIIT workout.  I guarantee you will feel better.

Start your Inspiration Board for 2012.  I will be working on mine this week.  It is a great way to get motivated to make postive changes.

Do you indulge guilt-free over the holidays?  What do you do to beat a holiday hangover?

Stay Healthy,

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Last-Minute Holiday Baking Ideas

I did a whole lot of baking yesterday.

I love baking for the holidays.  It really puts me in the Christmas spirit.  (A little dusting of snow would also do the trick, but it doesn't look like we are going to get any this year.) :(

If you are looking for some last-minute holiday treats to bring to your family gathering or to work next week, here are some fantastic and easy ones to try!

(I promise to borrow a camera to show you some of the ones I made!)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

30 Minute Workout: Run Interval

 Whew.  It has been one whirlwind of a week.  So glad to have a few days off for Christmas.

I am also glad to finally get in an outdoor run tomorrow.  It has been way to long since I have been out and the weather has been just about perfect for running.

As I have mentioned before, I fall in and out of love with running.  I am also more of a walker/runner.  I tend to do sprints of running as I find it more fun and challenging.

There are many great apps and programs out there to help you with your intervals.  If you are a beginner, I would suggest starting with 4 minutes of walking and 1 minute of running.  As you progress, you can play with this ratio (3:2, 2:3 etc.)

Today, I thought I would share with you one of my favourite running intervals (and some tunes to keep you motivated).  You can do this on a treadmill or hit the streets.  The choice is yours! 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Friday Favourites: Gift Ideas for Kids

I know I am a day late, but "Friday Favourites" has such a nice ring to it. ;)

Last week, I shared some of my picks for adult gifts.  This week, I wanted to share some ideas for the little munchkins out there.

I still have quite a bit of shopping left to do and I have to admit that creating these lists has given me a lot of great ideas. :)  I hope you find it helpful too!

For Boys

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Recipe Repeat: Gingerbread Cake with Cream Cheese Icing

I miss my camera.  There, I said it.

I really didn't realize how much I rely on my camera since I started blogging regularly.  Photography has always been something I have been interested it and I have really missed practicing and honing my skills. 

Perhaps Santa will bring me one this year. ;)

But, I digress. 

I am planning on a big bake-a-thon this weekend to try out some new holiday recipes I have encountered on a few of my favourite blogs and will be sharing them with you next week.  In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this recipe from blogs past.

I am afraid that the picture does not do it justice.  This was the most fantastic gingerbread cake I have ever tasted and I hope you try it out for yourself!

Gingerbread Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting (Makes 20 slices)

1 1/4 cups white flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup wheat bran
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp ginger
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup low fat butter milk*
1/2 cup applesauce
1 cup molasses
2 flax eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 9x13 pan,

Combine flour, bran, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and baking powder.  In a separate bowl, mix milk, applesauce and molasses until smooth.  Add flax eggs.

Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until incorporated.

Pour batter into greased pan and bake for 20-25 minutes.  Allow to cool and top with icing.

Cream Cheese Icing
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup light cream cheese

Nutritional Information (Approx)
181 calories
7 g fat
28 g carbs
2 g protein
1 g fibre

*No buttermilk, no problem!  Add 1 tbsp of vinegar to 1 cup of skim milk and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
Which camera do you recommend and why?  Any recipes you have for the holidays that are worth repeating?

Stay Healthy, 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Fall in Love with Winter Workouts

Having a hard time sticking to your weekly exercise schedule?

The cold weather and the shorter days can made many of us a little less motivated to get in our daily fitness.

So, how do you find your mojo and fall in love with winter workouts?

Here are a few tips to help you out!

Friday, December 09, 2011

Friday Favourites: Holiday Gift Ideas

It's my birthday today and I have the entire day off!!!

I'm going to do a little (birthday cake) baking, some yoga and put up the Christmas tree (maybe have a glass of wine to two ;).

I thought today would be a perfect day to share some of my favourite ideas for gift giving this year.  Whether you are trying to figure out what to get the person who has everything or need to add to your own wish list, there is something here for everyone!

For Him

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Recipe Repeat: Raw Coconut Date Squares

I couldn't be happier to see the sun today. It instantly put a smile on my face. :)  Do you know what might put a smile on your face?  These date squares!

They are raw, vegan, gluten-free, super easy to make and worth definitely repeating.  Perfectly portable and absolutely yummy, these would make a great addition to any party table.

Dates not only satisfy your sweet tooth, they offer some health benefits too!
  • High in soluble fibre
  • High in B vitamins
  • Easy to digest

The recipe yields a very small batch but could easily be doubled.  Give them a whirl and let me know what you think!

Raw Coconut Date Squares (Vegan, Gluten-Free, Makes 16 Squares)


Monday, December 05, 2011

Resolutions Reflected

It's that time again!

As you may recall, I have changed my approach towards goal setting.  For me, having a visual reminder of what I would like to strive for works the best.  I took some time yesterday to reflect on both of my inspiration boards.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Friday Favourites: Health and Fitness Magazines

It is Friday and I have two glorious days off! (I do have a few things I need to get done, but you bet your biscuits I am going to get some R&R in there somewhere :)

You may recall that I am a self-proclaimed magazine junkie. I love them.  I subscribe to about four different ones (which is an unusually small number for me) and pick up about 2-3 more every week.  I like to think of myself as a connoisseur of sorts and over the years I have learned exactly what I am looking for in a good magazine.

  • You don't have to leaf through 50 pages of ads to get to the first article
  • The articles are practical and easy to apply to real life
  • All fitness and health advice is backed up/given by an expert in the field

Here are three of my favourite magazines for the reasons listed above (and many others).


Thursday, December 01, 2011

15 Minute Workout: No Equipment Required

Happy December!

It is a busy month ahead and I hope you are managing to find balance and taking the time to take care of "you".

Speaking of which, I have a great workout for you today that I think will fit the bill.  It is quick (only 15 minutes), fun and doesn't require any special equipment.  You will get your heart rate up and work all of your muscle groups at the same time.  You will love it!

Make sure you check with your doc before you start any exercise program.


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