Weekending: Shuck Yeahhh! {Wellfleet Oysterfest}

Although this weekend started off terribly, things turned around much faster than I would have thought and the rest of the weekend was one of the better ones I’ve had in a long time. Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way, so we can focus on the good, right?!

RM and I had plans to go to the Wellfleet Oysterfest, but since RM was going down early on Friday to play golf, that meant I needed to head down on my own. Rather than putting miles on my car (I lease it), I asked if I could drive his since he was getting a ride with a friend. He parks at the Intercontinental, so on Friday evening, I trucked it into the city by T and got his car. Long story short, I ended up getting in an accident within 2 minutes of being out of the garage. Ugh. Both the other driver and I were fine, but I have NEVER felt worse in my ENTIRE life. The other guys car needed to be towed and RM’s had some pretty bad damage, too. Needless to say, I didn’t want to drive, in traffic, all the way to the cape and put on a good face in front of the others, but luckily it all worked out. RM was super understanding, everyone else was really supportive, and the wine was flowing…. all in all, a terrible start to the weekend, but after calls with the insurance companies yesterday, I THINK I will just have to pay the deductible. RM was already planning on trading in his Jeep, so this was just a nice push for him to do that.

….. and on to the better, happier parts of the weekend!

After some wine, RM’s cousin started cooking. He and his wife had made homemade gnocchi and tomato sauce and they also brought fresh swish chard and red peppers from their garden- talk about a delicious dinner! We also played Cards Against Humanity, which was the perfect way to end the night.

Saturday morning I woke up and as soon as I realized the car accident wasn’t a dream, I immediately started feeling really down. To help, I decided to go for a run. It was a speedy 3 mile run with some bootcamp stuff mixed in. The weather was absolutely gorgeous and my mood was totally changed around after!

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After breakfast, we all packed up and headed out… but first? #letmepackaroadie

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(mom, aren’t you proud? it wasn’t my idea, but I thought you’d love it- especially refilling the Copa bottles… he learned from the best!)

I had never been to the Wellfleet Oysterfest, but I can assure you it won’t be my last time attending! The whole thing was amazing- so much food, so many vendors, so many things to buy, an awesome band and a wine bar… hello, wonderful! We totally scored on weather, so that was just icing on the cake.

We stopped for our first round of oysters at the first vendor- they were awesome!

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From there, we wandered around, checking out the different food spots and vendors. Here’s a rundown of everything we ate: oysters, crab cake, ear of corn, fried clams, fried lobster tail, fish tacos, French fries and a cookie… and a glass of wine and beer to wash it all down 😉

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I think we got a little over zealous with the food, but it was all so good and there were so many options you’d only eat when at an event like this, so it was well worth it.

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The fest ended at 5 on Saturday so we headed back to the house RM’s friends were renting, which was walking distance from the fest. RM’s nephew wanted to hold my hand the whole way… my heart melted a little! Such a sweet boy.

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We had more wine and some snacks and played with the little ones (3 of them under a year and a half!) before hitting the road to go back to Cotuit. It was a relatively quiet night consisting of pizza (I know… just what we needed) and laughs and a decently early bedtime.

We hit the road early on Sunday and RM and I went to the Hingham Whole Foods to do our groceries for the week. It was such a nice store! I was able to do so much food prep when I got back: delicious chicken & veggie crock pot soup, paleo pumpkin banana bread, purple kale and a veggie, chicken and gluten free pasta bake… so good!

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So, even though the weekend had a rocky start, it ended on such a good note- I wasn’t ready for it to end, but luckily this weekend has a bunch of fun stuff lined up, too 🙂

Questions for you: How was your weekend? Have you ever been to the Wellfleet Oysterfest? When is a time you allow yourself to really indulge on foods you normally don’t eat?

This Week: Workouts, subbing & things I’m looking forward to

Good morning and happy Monday! I hope you all had a great weekend 🙂 I have to tell you something I’m proud of myself for: I took an unplanned, totally random day off from the gym last week and instead of working out, I watched tv and drank wine. I did get on my yoga mat for about 15 minutes of stretching and sun salutations, but that was mostly to stretch my incredibly tight hip flexors! I was supposed to be teaching a bonus bootcamp, but since it was raining I had to cancel it. After a late night out on Wednesday (and an unplanned double), by the time Thursday afternoon rolled around I was spent. Work has been crazy and I went back and forth about whether I should suck it up and go to the gym or just listen to my body and go home and relax. The fact that I picked the latter was a big step for me!

Last Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- I subbed a cardio kickboxing class at the Watertown BSC. I hadn’t taught kickboxing in almost 3 weeks and boy did I feel it the next couple of days. I got to wear my new kicks- LOVED them!

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  • Tuesday- I taught my last bootcamp class of the season. We got so dirty doing a super fun workout- I can’t wait to share it with you!

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  • Wednesday- I went to the gym expecting to go for an outdoor run before teaching UXF Burn, but literally as I was outside tying my sneakers, the manager came out and asked me to cover the 5:30 class. Mind you, it was 5:45 at that point, and there were only TWO people in the room waiting for the class. I really, really, really didn’t want to teach the class as I was already teaching a lot and wanted to have time for myself and my own workout, but I didn’t really have a choice. It ended up being a good workout and I pulled myself together, but I wasn’t happy with it at first!
  • Thursday- As I mentioned above, I had to cancel my bootcamp and decided to do a little yoga before relaxing. It was perfect.

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  • Friday- I went to the gym during lunch and ran 3.5 miles and then did some strength exercises.

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  • Saturday- I had had a stressful Friday night, so I decided a run was a good idea before the day started. We were also going to be eating and drinking a lot all day, so that was extra motivation. I ran a beautiful 3 miles and did 4 sets of squats, plié squats, oblique dips, oblique twists and push-ups throughout.

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  • Sunday- Another rest day!

This Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- I don’t know what I am going to do today. I have to deal with a lot of sh*tty stuff today ( more on that later), so I’m definitely going to need a solid workout after work.
  • Tuesday- I’m subbing the 5:30 cardio kickboxing and 6:30 UXF Burn at the South Station BSC. I like that double!
  • Wednesday- I’ll probably run before teaching UXF Burn
  • Thursday- I’m either going to rest on Thursday or Friday. If I workout on Thursday it will be during the day since I need to prep for my party on Thursday night (shopping, cleaning, etc).
  • Friday- I have a feeling I’ll rest on Thursday so I’ll probably head to the gym during my lunch break. I’ve really enjoyed my Friday lunch break workouts as it breaks up the day!
  • Saturday- I’ll teach my cardio kickboxing class at the Oak Square YMCA before my party.
  • Sunday- Another rest day. I’ll have to clean and stuff like that so it will be an active rest.

Things I’m Looking Forward To

Although this is a busy week, it’s all fun stuff so I can’t really complain 🙂 I’m excited to host my first party at my new place! Some of my friends and my mom and her friends can’t come, but I think there’s still going to be a good crowd- hopefully it will be good weather so we can go outside. I’m also looking forward to my friend Jen’s birthday dinner on Friday night. I won’t be able to stay for long since I have to prep for my party, but it will be good to see those girls.

Questions for you: What was the best workout you had last week? When’s the last time you skipped a workout “just because”? What are you looking forward to this week?

How I go about making stuffed peppers + my favorite “stuffings”

Lately, I’ve been mildly obsessed with stuffed peppers. I think I’ve made them 3 different times in the past month and a half, which is unusual for me since I try to make something different each week. I think I’ve been on such a stuffed pepper kick lately because they are SO easy, and there’s really no wrong way to make them.  On top of that, the variations for stuffed peppers are endless. You can do them with ground beef, ground chicken, ground turkey… or you could go meatless and sub out the ground meat for black beans or quinoa. And, the other veggies you decide to put in them can range from a specific theme (Mexican, for instance) to just whatever you might have in your fridge (a marinara sauce to mix everything together).

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Since there are endless possibilities for creating the perfect stuffed pepper, I thought I’d share my process for deciding how I want to “stuff” my peppers

  • Do I want to use a beef base for the peppers or do I want to go meatless by using quinoa, beans or rice (or a combo of all 3)?
  • I generally make this decision by seeing how much ground meat is at the store. Beef is not generally an option I choose, only because I prefer the taste of ground chicken or turkey, but it’s certainly an option if that’s your thing! My last batch of stuffed peppers had ground chicken AND quinoa… really living on the edge, I know 😉
  • Do I want to do a theme like Mexican, Italian or fall (sweet potatoes, squash, etc.)?
  • Do I want to go simple on the veggies and just pick a few like onions, zucchini and summer squash? Or, do I want an “everything in the fridge” mix of veggies, likely including, onions, pepper, broccoli, summer squash, zucchini, corn, etc… you get the idea.

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Another thing I do when I make stuffed peppers is make extra “stuffing”, so that I can use it throughout the week. Sometimes I put it atop spinach to create a different type of salad topper, sometimes I use it in a quesadilla and other times I just eat it as it is- that’s the beauty of the stuffing- you can’t really go wrong!

Lastly, I love stuffed peppers for the nutritious value. They’re an entire meal in and of themselves because they have veggies and protein, so no need for an extra salad or meat on the side. They are great to take for lunch for this very reason 🙂

If you’re looking for a recipe to try out, check out this one: Quinoa, Black Bean, Veggie & Spinach Stuffed Peppers. I have another recipe on my blog for a taco stuffed pepper, but the pictures aren’t showing up so it looks terrible 😦 When I fix it, I’ll share it with you:)

Questions for you: Do you make stuffed peppers? What’s your favorite stuffing for them?

Wednesday Workout: Outdoor Stations Bootcamp Workout

Hi there! I’ve got a fun workout for you today. If you’ve been reading for a while, you know I starting teaching my own outdoor bootcamp in Wakefield on Tuesday nights. Per usual, I try to mix things up so that we aren’t doing the same thing from week to week. Last week I taught my first stations workout, which is generally a crowd pleaser in my normal group exercise classes. Holding true to that standard, the girls seemed to enjoy the workout and we all agree that the class flew by! It was a fun workout because besides a band and a stability ball, we used everything you’d find in a standard park as our “equipment”.

Here’s what you need: wall or step for jump squats and squats and a bench for step ups and tricep dips. If you don’t have a stability ball, you can do a regular plank and if you don’t have a band, you can do partner lat pulls or superman pulls. Easy enough, right?! I also added in an equipment free cardio blast between rounds.

Outdoor bootcamp workout

Most of the moves are fairly common, but here are a few explanations:

  • Wall squats: perform a regular squat, but go low enough so that your butt touches the wall
  • Reverse lunge & knee twist: lunge back on the right leg and then bring that knee up in front of you and cross your left elbow to your right knee. Repeat on the left after 30 seconds.
  • Sit with your legs extended out straight. Put the band around your flexed feet and pull your arms back, squeezing your elbows towards each other.

If you have any other questions on the moves, please ask! This is a great workout to do with a friend, but can also be done by yourself at your home if you don’t have access to a park.

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Have fun 🙂

Questions for you: Have you ever done a “park” workout? What’s your favorite way to workout outside?

Weekending: Baby snuggles, Dry Bar, a Wedding & Lots of Errands

Hi there! How are you doing today? This past weekend was a good one- just what I needed after a stressful week.

After work on Friday, I headed to my friend Jess’s apartment in the North End to hang out with her, some other SMC friends and Jess’s sweet little baby girl, Nora. Jess had Nora in August, but because of everyone’s crazy schedules, we hadn’t had a chance to meet her yet. Snuggles with her was the perfect way to relax me 🙂

The rest of the night was spent passing the babe around, drinking wine, eating pizza and just hanging out. They’ve got an awesome little deck off the living room so we bundled up and headed out there to finish the night.

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After teaching on Saturday, I headed to Chestnut Hill to cash in my Groupon for a blow out at drybar in Chestnut Hill. Have you guys ever heard of drybar or been there? If you haven’t, it’s a salon that only washes, dries and styles your hair. Their slogan, “no cuts. no colors. just blowouts.”, is a perfect way to describe their services. What I loved about the place is that it’s such a girly-girl activity! They charge $40 for a blowout which also includes a cocktail… because cocktails make everything more fun, right? I couldn’t help but have a glass of champagne during my 12pm appointment. I literally did burpees and then had bubbly… so fitting 😉

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I was given a “menu” which had all of the styles listed out. The names were names of cocktails and I went with the Cosmopolitan as it was a loose, wavy style.

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Never mind the blowout, I could have had my hair washed for an hour- the scalp massage was so wonderful! From start to finish it was the most relaxing hour, and such a fun way to treat myself to some pampering! Unfortunately, the weather sucked and therefore my hair did not keep the look I got at the salon, but oh well. Nothing you can do!

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Later in the day, RM and I headed to Beverly to attend his cousin’s wedding. While it was freezing during the outdoor ceremony, it was very thoughtful and heartfelt… I just wish I could’ve had a glass of wine to help numb the cold temps! I didn’t take many photos during the night because I was meeting so many people and didn’t want to be that girl taking a million photos, but I’ll say it was a super fun wedding. His family likes to have a good time and we danced all night!

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We slept in until almost 10am on Sunday, which is a very rare occurrence for me. After breakfast we went for a nice walk to soak up some of the nice weather.

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After our walk, we split ways and I headed out to do some major errands. I’m having a party in a few weeks and wanted to get festive decorations so I headed back to Assembly Place with my first stop being Christmas Tree Shops. I love going there to get decorations as they are super cheap!

From there, I did a little shopping at the stores and scored with a great dress at Banana for $12 and new sneakers at Reebok for $50! My last stop was TJ Maxx where I finally was able to find something for the wall above my mantle. What do you think?

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I also decorated the hall area- I love how festive it’s starting to look!

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After decorating and cleaning, I finally made dinner. I sautéed a bunch of veggies and cooked some chicken and made a very tasty chicken and veggie stirfry.

And that sums it up! I could’ve used another 4 hours on Sunday to get everything done, but that’s ok. Although this week is busy, I’m going to do my best to stay calm and focus on one thing at a time. I have so many blog posts I want to write, but I’m going to try to not stress about getting those done if I’m tired and not getting home and sitting down until 9pm each night. I need to give myself more time to unwind at night!

Questions for you: What did you do this weekend? Have you been to drybar? Have you decorated for the fall or Halloween?