Tuesday, November 27, 2012

$100 Nordstrom Gift Card Giveaway!

To celebrate YOU and thank YOU for reading, commenting, and following along on my new blog, I'm doing a GIVEAWAY!  This blog is a labor of love and I sincerely hope it is a place of encouragement for you.  As women, we can be especially critical of our appearance and bodies and I hope that we can try to change what we don't like, accept what we can't change, and just all love ourselves more, regardless of what we look like.

For the giveaway, I chose one of my favorite places to shop- Nordstrom!  One winner picked at random will win a $100 gift card to the store.


You must be a follower or subscriber to enter.  You can also be an Instagram follower (@Honeywerehome) or Pinterest follower 

Just leave a comment letting me know. (Please leave your email address so I can contact you if you win).  You can blog, facebook, tweet, pinterest . . . for additional entries. 

I'm so thankful for my readers!

The winner will be announced on Friday, December 14, 2012.  

U.S. and Canadian friends welcome to enter.   

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Monday, November 26, 2012

5 Reasons to Work Out During the Holidays

Hello and happy Monday!  I hope you had a great Thanksgiving and long relaxing weekend.  I had a nice Thanksgiving, but ended up eating way too much.  I went for a great walk/jog in our neighborhood park on Friday morning and it felt so good to get outside and get moving.  That jog made me realize how important it is to keep working out for the rest of the year.  With the Christmas holiday approaching and a schedule that is extra full, workouts can be the first thing to go.   But, I encourage you (and myself) to stick with (or start) exercising for these reasons:

1.  Reduce Your Stress.  For some of us, the holidays can be a stressful time of year and working out definitely helps to alleviate those tensions.   Even if I don't feel like going to the park or gym, by the time I'm finished, I feel so much better!  I have never regretted a workout, but I have regretted not working out.  Working out helps clear my mind and improve my mood a ton.

2.  Working Out Helps You Eat Healthier.  This is true for me, but I wonder if it's true for you too?? When I'm working out consistently, I tend to eat better.  I recognize that I worked hard at the gym and I don't want to "blow it" by eating poorly.  On the other hand, if I'm not working out, I tend to eat badly- indulging in way too many desserts.  It's a double whammy either way.

3.  Finish Strong.  For me, I've worked really hard to get into good shape and I want to maintain what I've accomplished.  If you've done the same, don't spoil it by quitting now!

4.  Be Ahead of the Game for the New Year.  When the New Year comes and everyone resolves to "get in shape" you'll be ahead of the curve!  How great will that feel?!

5.  No Guilt for Small Indulgences.  I try to eat healthy most of the time, but I admit to having a sweet tooth and indulging in desserts (and wine!).  I don't think total deprivation is a good thing and knowing I work out helps remind me that it's okay to indulge during the holidays without feeling guilty.

I don't tell you anything that I don't tell myself.  Writing this blog helps motivate me to continue my efforts at living healthy too.  My leg is feeling better, so I plan to pick back up my Live Fit Trainer.  I made my meals for the week on Sunday and I plan to Finish Strong and start the New Year off right!

via FitSugar

Also, I realized that I now have over 300 followers on Honey We're Healthy!  To celebrate and say Thank You, I will be announcing a GIVEAWAY this week.  If you want to follow this blog, click HERE or subscribe HERE.


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Bring on the Dessert!

When it comes to Thanksgiving, most of us look forward to eating some lovingly prepared home cooked food and indulging in a few (or more) drinks.  I'm no exception and especially love getting my kitchen all dirty and smelling delicious aromas from the oven.  This year, I'm not hosting Thanksgiving, so I'm just preparing a few desserts to take.  I like to indulge, but not to the point where I'm uncomfortably stuffed, so I usually nibble on the appetizers, eat a smaller main meal, and sample all of the desserts!

This year, I'm in charge of the chocolate.  I'm making

(I'm trying one of these sauces this time.)







Chocolate Peanut Butter Globs (from Ina Garten's new cookbook, Foolproof)


What's on your Thanksgiving menu?  I hope you have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tex Mex To Go

Y'all know that I couldn't make it through the week without preparing and portioning out meals for the week.  This is especially true for my lunch since I typically eat at the office.  One of my "go-to" meals is a Tex Mex dish that I shared recently on Instagram.


A few people asked for the full recipe so here you go.  I feel kinda bad because this isn't really a "recipe" - it's more of an assembly.  This recipe makes 10 small meals for me. 

Ingredients
  • 2 packages Jennie O Extra Lean Ground Turkey
  • 1 large can of fat free refried beans
  • 2 packages Taco Bell low sodium seasoning
  • Low fat shredded cheese
  • Low fat or fat free sour cream
  • Pickled jalapeños 
Directions

Brown the meat, then add the seasoning packages and water according to package directions.

I portion out the meat into 10 small containers, add a scoop of beans, sour cream, cheese and a few jalapenos.  I microwave it for about a minute and a half.  I also like this as a salad on top of shredded lettuce.  


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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Spiced Sweet Potato Salad with Apples, Grapes, and Almonds

I'm so looking forward to the weekend!  I can't believe it's the weekend before Thanksgiving!  I feel like this holiday has totally snuck up on me.  When did we get so close to the end of the year??

This week, I prepared one of my favorite salads (fruit, nut and cheese), and today, my friend Jennifer is sharing one of her favorite salads- made with sweet potatos, apples, grapes and almonds- yum!!


Salads aren't always the first thing I think of for dinner when the temperatures start to dip but I've been making an effort to incorporate more fall and winter salads into our routine and, surprise, surprise, we're all loving them!

There are so many interesting ingredients in this hearty salad, you almost don't feel like you're eating a salad.  If you have a heavier eater in the family (ahem..husbands, boyfriends, and teenage boys) try adding a simple grilled cheese sandwich on hearty whole grain bread and I don't think you'll hear any complaints about portion size!

One of the things I love about this salad is its versatility.  You can make a number of substitutions without altering the health value, flavor, or texture of it drastically.  Sweet potatoes or butternut squash would both be great as the roasted vegetable.  Baby spinach, arugula, or mixed greens all works as the lettuce component.  Use any variety of apple or grape that you like.  Dried cranberries, cherries, or blueberries would all be delicious.  And for the nuts, walnuts, pecans, or marcona almonds would all be wonderful.  Tailor it to your tastes and what you have available and you'll have a quick and healthy dinner on the table in no time.

p.s.  This salad would also make a great salad course for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday!


(Serves 4)
Ingredients
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1" cubes
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. toasted sesame oil
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
2 Fuji or Gala apples, cored and cut into 1" cubes
2 cups green grapes, halved if large
1/2 c. dried blueberries (I like Trader Joe's dried wild blueberries)
1/4 c. sliced almonds
4 c. arugula
3/4 c. apple cider or apple juice
2 tbsp. cider vinegar
2 tbsp. minced shallots
2 tsp. dijon mustard
1/2 c. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper

Preheat oven to 375º.
Toss sweet potatoes, 1 tbsp. olive oil, sesame oil, cumin, and 1/2 tsp. salt in a medium bowl.  Spread on a baking sheet in a single layer and roast until tender and starting to brown, about an hour.  Let cool slightly.
Meanwhile, combine the apple cider, vinegar, and shallots in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Cook until the mixture is reduced to about 1/4 cup, 6-8 minutes.  Take off the heat and whisk in 1/2 c. olive oil, 1 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper.
Place arugula in a large bowl and toss with some of the dressing.  Divide the arugula among four plates and top with apples, grapes, dried blueberries, almonds, and sweet potatoes.  Drizzle more dressing over the top and serve.



Magic





Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Breakfast Egg Sandwich

Today I'm bringing you a breakfast sandwich that one of my very-favorite-people-in-the-whole-world, my Grandma, used to make for me when I was younger.  It's an egg muffin and whenever I make it, I always think of her.  It reminds me that sharing food is sharing love and my Grandma is exceptional at that.


I use a 100% whole wheat muffin, extra lean turkey ham, 2% American cheese and one real egg (but you can use egg whites if you prefer).  Simply fry the egg and a slice of turkey ham with Pam cooking spray, toast the muffin, and top with a slice of cheese.  


Below is the nutrition information.  


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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Sidelined

I recently mentioned that an injury was plaguing me and, unfortunately, it hasn't gotten any better.  It's my right hamstring or maybe some kind of sciatic nerve pain from being tied to my desk??  Although I have been working out hard the last 8 weeks, I don't think I overtrained.  I'm careful to lift heavy, but not heavier than I can bear.

I'm disappointed because I only had 4 weeks to go on the Live Fit Trainer, but I can't complete it in my current condition.  The last phase calls for active rests between sets (burpees, jumps, sprints, jumprope) and I don't think those are a good idea for me right now.  

On the up side, I had actually already gotten more lean in the 8 weeks than I had anticipated and I'm not sure I really wanted to get any leaner.  

To maintain my sanity, I'll continue working out, but focus on upper body and maybe just walking.  If the pain persists, I will visit a doctor.  Hopefully, it's not that serious and will go away on its own soon.  

On my blog, I'll continue to bring you fitness advice, food ideas and recipes, and more help to keep you motivated.  Let's finish the year strong!  I'm super excited for the holidays and I want to post healthy food alternatives in addition to some of my favorite splurges!  Thanks for all of you support and encouragement.  

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via
Don't let that be you! :)

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Salad (Fruit, Nut, Cheese)

Hi friends!  It's good to be back:)  Over the weekend we went to my son's school Fall Festival and had a great time.  He is at that absolutely delightful age of 2 1/2 and I cannot get enough of him!  Just look at those cute cheeks and squishy little arms and hands!


The problem with the festival was each parent had to bring a dessert, so I made chocolate covered toffee, and then I couldn't stop eating it!  This stuff is seriously addicting.  Now, I'm craving a detox and think I need to incorporate a few salads into my meals this week.

One of my favorite combinations of salad is fruit, nut and cheese.  The salad below is a combination of Romaine and butter lettuce, apricots, walnuts, and goat cheese.  I drizzle a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar and that's it!  Super fast and easy.  Add grilled chicken for extra protein.


Of course, you can use whatever lettuce you prefer, then switch up the ingredients with various kinds of nuts (like almond slices or pecans), fruit (peaches/cranberries), and cheese (parmesan shards, feta).  Enjoy!

p.s.  If you want the toffee recipe, go HERE.

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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

You Can Do It!

Hi guys!  An injury has sidelined me for a bit.  Hope to be back soon!

In the meantime . . . 

via

Monday, November 5, 2012

My Live Fit (WEEK 8) Recap- Counting Calories

So this week (I just finished Week 8 of 12) on the Live Fit Program, we were supposed to count calories.  I used the formula below to determine I should be eating around 1,230 to 1,530 calories per day, depending on my activity.


I found this super cool website, My Fitness Pal that calculates calories for you.  You just type in your ingredients (they have a drop down list for you to choose from down to specific brands) and it calculates the calories, carbs, fat, and protein grams for you.  Here's what 1606 calories a day looks like for me when I'm eating:

Meal 1:  Protein pancakes with peanut butter and syrup + coffee and creamer
Snack:  Two protein brownies -- I don't think the brownies are in there, so my calories are about 100 higher than the My Fitness Pal totals (totaling 1606)
Meal 2:  "Tex Mex" -- I had to add it twice under the "lunch" category
Meal 3:  "Tex Mex"
Meal 4:  Protein shake (after workout)
Meal 5:  Egg White omelet


Those calories add up fast, and with My Fitness Pal, I was able to see how every calorie counts - my coffee creamer alone has 100 calories!

I completely blew the calories this weekend though.  I indulged in cheeseburger, fries, and a beer on Friday, crab cake egg benedict on Saturday at brunch, pizza on Saturday night, and Sunday for lunch.  Also, I had wine on Sunday- but just one glass.  

I'll be back tomorrow sharing my latest photo and workout sheets.  

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Thursday, November 1, 2012

Healthy Shepherd's Pie (via The Chronicles of Home)

Happy Friday all!  I hope you have some good weekend plans- I know I'm ready for it!  My friend Jennifer from The Chronicles of Home is back with a wonderful fall/winter recipe for you.  She made over Shepherd's Pie to make it more healthy, without sacrificing any flavor.  Since I've been eating pretty much the same thing over and over, I'm really looking forward to cooking some delicious good-for-you food.   I've got my eye on you Thanksgiving! . . . 

Be honest…do you think I've lost my mind putting "healthy" and "shepherd's pie" in the same sentence?  I promise you, I am still sane!

This shepherd's pie is thick, richly-flavored, meaty, and fits snugly into the "comfort food" category but is also loaded with healthy vegetables.  The typical butter and cream laced potato topping is swapped for a parsnip, potato, and butternut squash puree made rich with just one tablespoon of butter and kept smooth and creamy by using some of the cooking water.  

Instead of the traditional lamb I use beef here, and this is my secret to keeping the dish both healthy and doable for a weeknight.  Whenever I cook a chuck roast, I make sure I save about a pound of the leftover meat.  To cook the chuck, I place it in a Dutch oven with red wine and water covering the meat about 3/4 of the way. 

I roast it, covered, in the oven for about 4 hours, until the meat shreds apart.  I carefully go through the meat with a couple of butter knives, shredding it all and removing any visible fat.  Then I set aside about a pound of the shredded, de-fatted meat and freeze it until I'm ready to make shepherd's pie.

The taste is everything you might want from a shepherd's pie but you can put that indulgence guilt away for another time and eat happily with the knowledge that you are putting a cornucopia of healthy things into your body.



Ingredients
Filling:
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 c. peeled and chopped carrots (about 3 medium)
1 c. chopped celery (about 2 large stalks)
14 oz. can diced tomatoes, drained
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. tomato paste
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
14 oz. can chicken broth
14 oz. can beef broth
large bunch Swiss chard, center stems removed, chopped
1 tbsp. flour
1 lb. cooked, shredded beef from a chuck roast

Topping:
1 c. peeled parsnips, cut into chunks
2 c. peeled potatoes, cut into chunks
2 c. peeled butternut squash, cut into chunks
1 tbsp. butter

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.  Add onion and saute 5 minutes.  Add carrots, celery, tomatoes, garlic, tomato paste, bay leaves, and thyme.  Saute until partially tender then add broths and bring to a boil.  Lower heat and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 15 minutes.  Stir in Swiss chard and cook until wilted, about 5 minutes.  

Put the flour in a small bowl, scoop a bit of the hot broth into the bowl, and whisk until smooth.  Add to the pot and stir in the beef.  Bring to a boil and season with salt and pepper.  Remove from heat.

While the filling is cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Add parsnips and cook 2 minutes.  Add potatoes and squash and cook until very tender, about 10 minutes longer.  Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.  Return vegetables to the pot and use a hand mixer to puree the vegetables with the butter.  Add reserved cooking liquid a bit at a time until everything is smooth.

Preheat the oven to 375º.  Pour the filling into a rectangular baking dish.  Spread the warm topping over and bake until the filling bubbles at edges and the topping begins to brown, about 30 minutes.  Let cool slightly and serve.



Thank you Jennifer!

How I Wake Up Early to Workout

Are any of you getting enough sleep?


I'm definitely a girl who needs her 8 hours and could easily sleep in on the weekend (and take a nap too) if given the opportunity.  I'm realizing that, in order to get all my workouts in, some days I have to exercise before work.  Which means waking up around 5:00 to 5:15 a.m.  UG!  Not being a morning person, I can say opening my eyes at the crack of dawn is not fun.  But once I get going, I feel so great that I got up and got it done!

Here are my tips for waking up early and getting out the door. 

First and foremost, DECIDE before you get to bed, that you are waking up early and pick the appropriate time.   Think about why you are getting up early and what you want to accomplish.  I know I'm going to feel so bad if I plan to get up early to work out, but miss it because I slept too late to do it.  

1.  When my alarm goes off, I sit up and get my feet onto the floor.  If I don't do this QUICK, I'm likely to talk myself out of getting out of bed.  I literally get up the second the alarm goes off and get moving before I have time to think how cozy it is in the bed.  Don't think "cozy," think "Get up NOW!"  And don't hit snooze!

2.  Have coffee set to brew.  This is critical for me.  Knowing that my coffee is ready and waiting for me helps get me downstairs.  I pour mine into a thermos and drink it on the way to the gym.

3.   Get everything prepared the night before (gym clothes laid out, breakfast ready to go, water bottle filled).

4.  I've been eating oatmeal (with raisins, cinnamon, and almond slices topped with skim milk) which cooks in one minute in the microwave, before I head out since I can't workout on an empty stomach.  

Having my workout over and done with for the day first thing is really rewarding.  And it frees the rest of the day for whatever else you have planned.

Now that I've had a few morning workouts, I realize I actually enjoy that quiet alone time.  Knowing that my son is soundly sleeping and I'm not interrupting his routine to get my workout in is great.

I will probably continue mixing it up, working out a couple mornings, couple evenings and on Saturday.

Are you a morning exerciser?  
How do you make yourself wake up early?




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