What I’m Reading: 3/31/15

Link love. Friday Favorites. Things I’m loving. Link-ups.

There are so many different ways that bloggers are linking up to each other to share their content. It’s taken me ages to finally jump on the band-wagon, but “better late than never”, right?! Not only does sharing links from other bloggers benefit me by showing other bloggers that I’m reading and sharing their posts, but it also helps all of YOU because you get to be {hopefully} introduced to some new-to-you blogs. Win-win, right? (please note that I types Wine instead of Win both times…)

I went back and forth on a catchy name for this new series and am still not entirely sure I’m crazy about what I’ve chosen, but I’m rolling with it for now- if you have suggestions for something different, I’d love to hear them! I’ve also been trying to figure out what day I want to post this on- Friday, to serve as a great distraction from work (Athena’s “Friday Favorites” do this to me every.single.week!), Monday, again to serve as a way to slowly start your week, mid-week? I think I’m leaning towards Mondays for this series because I think it’s a nice way to catch up on anything you might have missed the previous week/weekend (I’m posting on a Tuesday this week because I was sick on Sunday/Monday and wasn’t up for blogging).

So, with that said, here are posts I’m reading, links I’m loving, stories I’m sharing. The list is short as I’m just getting the hang of it (and trying to find new-to-me blogs so I’m not sharing all the same posts as other bloggers- I saw Athena’s Friday favorites last Friday and we matched on a few… hoping to share more variance in the next ones!)! In the future, I plan on adding in quotes I come across and photos I see on Instagram that make me smile. Enjoy!

  • I learned so much from this post! I need to be better about tuning into my body and figuring out when this is necessary: Deload Week- What, When, Why from I Train Therefore I Eat
  • This is a blog I was introduced to through my partnership with FitFluential. Her posts are always super photogenic and I generally find myself hungry after reading them… This post won’t make you hungry, but it might make you motivated to get into the kitchen and try out some of these sugar substitutions! Sugar Substitutes. And, while you’re perusing her site, be sure to check out this post featuring 18 partner workouts (including one from me!): 18 Partner Workouts
  • RM and I plan on making these delicious looking Grilled Tuna Rolls soon, although I think I’ll ditch the roll. I think that’s too much bread for a fish entrée.
  • I can’t wait for us to make these. We might do them on Friday since it’s Good Friday and we can’t eat meat: Broccoli Potato Burgers
  • RM and I made these pancakes for our “Sunday Morning Pancake” day this past weekend and ohhh myyyy goodness were they delicious! They were light and fluffy and you’d never know they were healthy. We didn’t have an orange so we topped with banana and it was perfect: Paleo Coconut Orange Pancakes
  • If pancakes aren’t your thing, maybe oatmeal is? If so, there are 5 healthy oatmeal recipes in this post- they look so good and I can’t wait to make some 🙂 Healthy Oatmeal Recipes for a Simple Breakfast
  • Kim’s post on being skinny or strong really hit home. There were so many years where I just wanted to be skinny… I had no idea how much better it is to strive for strength until I started incorporating more weights into my workouts. I can’t say enough about all the good things that have come as a result of that switch.
  • This isn’t anything to read, but it’s adorable to look at! Leopard Kitten

Here’s where I need your help! I’m looking to expand upon these posts in the future, but I could use some help with finding good material, so if you come across anything you think might be of interest to me or other B2B readers, I’d love for you to send them to me! Or, if there are any blogs you think I should start following,  leave the URLs in the comments 🙂

 

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Shrimp and Veggie Curry Dish

I feel like I go through phases with my food dishes of choice. For a while, it was chicken and roasted veggies and kale. Then, it was meatloaf (so random, but so good). Then it was fish tacos (ok I always love these, but have to force myself to not request them every week!). Recently, though, it’s been curry dishes. When RM was doing the Whole30 (more on that later- he’s working on a recap guest post for you guys!), we were looking for meals that fit the guidelines and that were not boring. With so many restrictions, this wasn’t as easy as you might think, but this dish fit the bill and we were super happy with how it came out.

Before some of you start going “yuck. I don’t like curry”, I want to let you know that this recipe doesn’t taste like traditional curry (like this curry recipe did). I can’t really explain the difference, but it’s a milder taste and just doesn’t remind me of traditional curry dishes. Maybe it’s because of the curry paste we use, which is Thai Kitchen curry paste- either red or green. I forget which one is my favorite because we interchange them all the time (I think we’ve made this dish 4 times in the past three months- I just made it again on Monday with chicken thighs and the green curry paste), but either one will work and be delicious- I promise. Another thing we change up is the “meat” of the dish. We’ve used chicken breasts, chicken thighs and shrimp, but I think my favorite is when we make it with shrimp, as I’m showing in this recipe.

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Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp. green or red curry paste
  • 1 can of coconut milk (make sure there’s no added sugar or anything- just coconut!)
  • 1/2-3/4 lb peeled and pre-cooked shrimp
  • 1/2-1 cup cooked quinoa, rice, millet, etc. (optional!)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1/2 cup chopped red pepper
  • 1/4-1/2 cup snow peas
  • 1/2 cup chopped broccoli
  • 2-3 large carrots, spiralized or chopped very thin (can use a shredder, too)
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1-2 tsp red pepper flakes (depending on how hot you want it!)
  • 2-4 tbsp EVOO (for sautéing)

Directions

1. Chop/spiralize your veggies. Heat a large pan with plenty of EVOO and add in all the veggies once it’s hot. Cook until they’ve softened (about 10 minutes). Season them with salt and pepper as desired. If you’re going to eat this with quinoa/rice/millet/etc., start cooking that now, too.

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2. Once the veggies have softened, remove from the heat and add in your coconut milk. Bring to a simmer and add in the curry paste after about 5 minutes. Stir to combine and let them come to a boil before turning down the heat and letting it simmer for a few minutes.

3. Add in the veggies and shrimp and let everything simmer until the curry sauce thickens.

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We’ve served it over nothing (during the Whole30 challenge), over quinoa and over rice. I think my favorite is rice since it soaks up the extra sauce a bit.

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I love these “one pot” meals because cleanup is a breeze and it’s great to get a bunch of food groups in with just one dish (stuffed peppers is another favorite to accomplish this).

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Another beauty with this dish is that it reheats so well! The flavor intensifies in the perfect amounts.

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YUM! Just looking at these photos makes me want to have a dish of this right now! This week I also paired it with some kale, which was another great way to soak up the extra sauce. This is a great dish for 2 that will leave you with plenty of leftovers or a small dinner party. I’d love to know if you try it!

Questions for you: What’s your favorite non-American style cuisine? Do you like curry? What’s your favorite protein to add to a dish?

 

Wednesday Workout: 25 Minute Total Body AMRAP Workout

Helllooo! How’s everyone doing today? I had to take a last minute work trip to Canton, which isn’t ideal, but hopefully it will go smooth and fast! Know what is ideal, though? Especially with a busy schedule? A short, but effectively butt-kicking workout! I truly believe that long gone are the days where you need to spend hours in the gym to qualify as a “workout” (unless, of course, you’re training for something specific that requires hours of training), which is why I’ve been loving AMRAP workouts; they force you to work hard and fast (but always focusing on form over speed!) and if you do them correctly (working through each exercise without rest), you’ll definitely feel like you’ve worked out for probably double as long as the workout really was.

Whenever I finish an AMRAP workout, I’m always surprised by how challenging it ended up being. First round? Not so bad. Second round? Starting to feel it. Third round? Ok, I’m slowing down… you get the idea.  This particular AMRAP workout was no different in that regard- my legs and upper body felt pretty smoked by the end!

25 minute total body AMRAP workout
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Nikia & Kyle’s Snowy Spring Wedding

It seems as though I say “that was the best wedding ever!” after every friends’ wedding. Waking up the morning after Nikia and Kyle’s wedding, my mind was thinking that same exact thing. We danced, we laughed, we cried, we loved. It was such a beautiful, wonderful wedding with so much love that it was hard to not think it was perfect!

RM and I got stuck in massive amounts of traffic when we left on Friday afternoon, but we finally got to Chittenden, VT around 8pm. Lucky for us, most of our friends had just arrived and we were greeted with a big ol’ glass of wine! The wedding festivities were held at the beautiful Mountain Top Inn, which was perfect since they had large houses for renting in addition to normal hotel rooms. Since there were 11 of us in our group (SMC girls plus some of our significant others), we opted to rent a house. The house was HUGE and could’ve fit probably 5 more people comfortably! There was a nice, big kitchen/living room/dining room area, 5 bedrooms and bathrooms, a whole separate living area downstairs including a kitchen. It seemed like it just went on and on!

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After we finished catching up, we sat down for “family dinner”. My friend Jess picked up some chicken parm and eggplant parm from Bricco and it totally hit the spot!

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5 Reasons Why I Workout {and love doing it!}

My friend Athena and I have joked in the past about how we are those crazy people who actually love to workout. Very, very rarely do I ever dread going to the gym. In fact, 99.9% of the time I’m actually excited about it and look forward to it. I know- I sound like a crazy person, but before you get all eye-rolly on me, hear me out:

Working out shouldn’t be something you dread. It just shouldn’t. There are SO MANY different ways for you to “workout” that there’s bound to be something you don’t dread. I’m not saying you should love it like I do, but you shouldn’t dread it because that’s just bound to end up inhibiting your workouts and putting a big ol’ black cloud over anything that you categorize as a “workout”.

A workout also shouldn’t be a punishment. You shouldn’t go into the gym with the mentality of “Ugh. I drunk ate too many slices of pizza last night so I need to run an extra mile today” or “I need to take 2 classes tonight to burn off the birthday cake left in the office kitchen” or “I’m feeling really fat today so I’m going to go to the gym for 2 hours to sweat it out”. Why, you ask? Because that’s not fun. And more importantly, it’s not healthy. It’s viewing your body in a negative way and using exercise as a punishment, and who likes punishment? Not me. I’d rather look at the gym or a workout as something I’m lucky to be able to do. Something that is helping to make me healthier. Something that is making me stronger. Sounds more fun, right?

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’ve had the negative/workout as punishment mentality in the past many, many times. I would feel guilty if I didn’t go. I would feel gross and sluggish if I didn’t go. I would beat myself up mentally if I didn’t go. That sucked. Making my workouts and going to the gym as something I feel liked I NEEDED to do was really just not fun. And what’s worse is there was rarely a time when I’d finish a workout and be proud of myself and what I accomplished… it was always “I need to do more next time”.

Luckily, over the past 3 or so years- really since I started teaching and learning more about fitness and incorporating more strength training into my program- my mentality has been constantly changing and I can now say I workout because I love my body, not because I hate it. I love the feeling of creating a workout and going to the gym to do it. I love the feeling when I’m able to increase my weights or my speed on the treadmill. I love that I can kick my butt in just a half hour, vs. hours.

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So today, I’m sharing 5 (of the many!) reasons why I workout and why I love to do it. I hope that if you’re finding yourself in a rut or feeling discouraged about your workouts, this might make you take a step back and think about why you’re working out and to try and find the things you like about it.
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