Tuesday, May 29, 2012

My latest obsession: GoRecess.com

Talk.About.Brilliant. I'm obsessed. Gorecess.com makes finding a fitness class and scheduling a time to exercise so much easier. Tired of your workout routine? Interested in taking a class such as Barre or Mat Pilates but your gym doesn't offer it? Moved to a new city and are unsure of where to workout?

GoRecess helps you find the best class of the day, where you want, when you want, so you can be your best every day. Maybe you're in the mood for a certain type of workout. Maybe you want convenience and something that fits your hectic schedule. Maybe you want variety and the flexibility to try new places. Or maybe you just need the motivation of a good instructor and others around you to inspire you to push yourself.

From spinning and yoga to pilates and boxing and more, GoRecess will help you find exactly what you're seeking. Say goodbye to boring runs on the treadmill, mindless strides on the elliptical and excuses to skip a workout. Now get off your couch or away from your desk and choose your "recess."

What I love about GoRecess is that it finds all the group classes in my area with just one click. It doesn't get any easier than that. Group classes, if you can get past the intimidating factor (and yes there is always someone worse than you in the class), are an amazing calorie blasting workout. It's an hour of intense working out as opposed to wandering the gym trying to muster up motivation. I love the concept of GoRecess because it allows me to change up my workout so I never get bored.

All you have to do is visit gorecess.com, plug in your address or zip, time of day you’re looking to break a sweat, and the desired activity (Pilates? yoga? strength training?) you’re up for and the radius you are willing to drive (or even better bike or jog!), and the site will give you a detailed list of all the fitness options in your area like you see above. 

Also, most studios will offer their first class for free, so if you’re on a tight budget, you can jump around for a while while you save up some cash and settle on your favorite.

I encourage all of you to take a second and check out GoRecess, it may inspire you to try something you have never done before OR find something you didn't know existed!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Sweet Sunday

Who doesn't love kabobs?! I mean seriously, this might just be the easiest summer dessert evah. No baking and ready in minutes. Plus they look cute too. You could even doctor them up with bananas or blackberries. Your call. And I like to serve with a dollop of whip cream for dipping. Perfect for a summer BBQ or 4th of July shindig. Or better yet - whip them up tomorrow for Memorial Day!

~Strawberry Shortcake Kabobs~

Ingredients: Serves 4
16 medium strawberries, hulled                                                 
Angel food or pound cake, purchased at local grocery store                                               
1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 T reduced-calorie margarine
Whip cream, optional

1) Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper
2) Alternately thread 4 strawberries and 3 shortcake quarters onto each of 4 wood or metal skewers
3) Combine chocolate chips and margarine inn a small saucepan
4) Melt over low heat, stirring, until smooth and well-blended
5) Drizzle chocolate over kabobs
6) Refrigerate until set, about 4 minutes

I hope this ends your weekend on a sweet note!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

What I'm wearin' now...

Wondering what's my nail color of choice as I head into summer? At the moment, I'm really diggin' Sally Hansen's Insta-Dri Fast Dry nail color in "Instant Iris." It's perky. Bright. Inspires me to bold and live outloud.

The picture looks more purple than it really is. I'd describe it as more magenta. Perfect for toes. Alittle obnoxious for the hands. Looks great with a tan.

Besides the color, I really like Sally's Insta-Dri polish. It goes on quickly and smooth. It dries in 60 seconds and is a nice shiny finish. My favorite feature - the over-sized brush. One coat and my nail was completely covered. Big toe excluded obviously. Truly genius.

Available in Target stores for $3.59. Check out Sally's other fantastic colors - Beautiful Orange You Fast screams summer while Coral Rush, Flyin Fuschia and Rapidly Rose are fun and perfectly PINK!

Monday, May 14, 2012

If you do one thing this week...


This week I encourage you to bring back the art of having fun without any electronic thingamajigs. Think about your week ahead and carve out at least 30 minutes doing outdoor activities that will have the young and the young-at-heart jumping for joy.

My own personal observation is that parents nowadays don't partake in outdoor activities with their children like they used to. And should. I believe the majority of parents (some - not all) see their time shuttling the kids to and from practice, tutoring, music, etc as all they should do.

Sure you are spending time with them but is it quality time?

Through the eyes of a child, quality time spent is actually getting down at their level. Those moments that in five, ten, twenty years from now they will say, "Remember when we used to climb that big tree and pick the apples? That was so fun." Or "Remember when Dad used to throw the worst spirals?" Those are the times they will never forget.

I vividly remember my dad coming home from work and within five minutes was out in the front swinging the jump rope with us. Riding bikes. Throwing the Frisbee. Hopscotch. Tag.

Oh how I loved tag.

Duck duck goose. Kick ball. "Horse" on the b-ball court. Relay races.

I think I loved relay races the most.

You get the picture. They will be grown and gone before you know it.

Here are three versions of tag to get you started this week interacting with your littles:

1) "Manhunt:" Each time the player who is “it” tags a person, that person must link arms with the “it” kid (or another kid in the chain) and run with him. This continues until the last tagged child is added to the mob.

2) "Tornado Tag:" The “it” player can tag others only while he is spinning around with outstretched arms.

3) "Shadow Tag:" The “it” player tags other kids by stepping on their shadows. (Note: There is some degree of trust involved in this version. It might be wise to have someone stand in as the referee.)                          

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Do you have Nomophobia?

No Mobile Phone Phobia. You have it?

According to NBC Miami's article today there is a the growing number of people who admit they have an obsession of staying connected.

According to a study by SecurEnvoy, a company that deals in mobile phone technology, the fear of being apart from your cellphone is on the rise. It's called Nomophobia, as in "No mobile phone phobia," and 66 percent of the people surveyed said they have it.

{Do you?? If I'm going to be real with you, I probably would fit in that bucket}

That number is up from a similar study four years ago, where 53 percent of people admitted to a fear of losing their cellphones.

{Fearful because it's annoying to loose all your stored contacts}

Dr. Mitch Spero, director of child and family psychologists in Broward County, said it was common to see problems arise because of cellphone use.

"Cellphones are tools that should be used to enhance our lives," he warned, "not to destroy our interpersonal communication skills with those that we love."

{True that}

The study by SecurEnvoy shows that people check their cellphones an average of 34 times a day. But for Karla Campos from Pembroke Pines, that's nothing.

{Count today how many times you check it...}

Campos estimates that she checks her phone closer to 50 times a day, and she even sleeps with it. "Before I go to sleep, I put it under my pillow," said Campos, who owns a web services company called Gig Logo.

{Over-the-top in my book. Ok to have it near the bed for the alarm but c'mon - under the pillow?!?}

According to the study, 75 percent of people use their cellphones in the bathroom. Scott Miller-Farrugia from Coral Springs admitted to being one of those people. "I bring it into the bathroom instead of the newspaper," he said. Scott's wife Shellie is such a cellphone addict, her nickname is "Celly." "No matter where I am, it goes with me," she said.

{I'm too am guilty of bringing it into the bathroom}

Campos takes "everywhere" to the extreme, bringing her cellphone into the shower, "just in case it rings and somebody needs me." For the record, Campos said she placed the phone on a ledge where it stays dry. She also uses her cellphone to communicate with her 10-year-old son. But not necessarily when they're apart.


"He doesn't talk to me, I see him and pass by and he just says 'Hi Mom,'" Campos explained, "but when I have real conversation with him, it's on the phone, through Facebook."


Campos argued that any form of communication is better than none at all, and said she believes the cellphone connects her family. Spero disagreed. "What I recommend is to keep your cellphone there for emergencies, but when you're with someone make them the priority in your life," he said.

The study showed that the younger you are, the more likely you are to be afflicted with Nomophobia. Women are also more likely to have it than men.

{Do you children already have Nomophobia? Are you setting the right example for them by always being on it - checking email, texting, Facebook, Twitter? Monkey see - monkey do}

Wondering if you have Nomophobia?

The warning signs include: Obsessively checking your phone, constantly worrying about losing it even when it's in a safe place, and never turning it off.

Monday, May 7, 2012

If you do one thing this week...


Who eats the crust of the sandwiches, the left over mac n' cheese at the bottom of the bowl, a few pieces of diced chicken or cheese here and there? I do. And it's no wonder I can't lose those last 5-10 pounds.

I think I eat good. But then I catch myself finishing off the last of Chase's quesadilla or remaining Wheat Thins on Lance's highchair tray. Essentially I'm consuming a 4th meal - a meal that is not meant to be had. Mindless munching where calories add up. Accounting for an entire extra meal in my day.

I do. You do it. Hey it happens. And if you're not a stay at home mom that's finishing off the last of the PB&J, most likely you'll do it at work. The "I'll take just one more for later" cookie as your walking out of the meeting, a handful of jellybeans off a co-workers desk.

You might not realize just how quickly calories can add up though. An extra tablespoon of salad dressing can add 75-100 calories, an extra tablespoon of butter adds 102 calories, and that 1-ounce bag of chips with your sandwich at lunch adds 162 calories.

Tablespoon people? Do you know how little a tablespoon really is??? And c'mon on - 1 ounce. That 1 ounce bag requires you to mop the floor for an additional 30 minutes. No thanks - I'll skip the chips.

Now I know 102 extra calories doesn't seem like much but have that, "oh what's an extra dollop really gonna do?" mentality three, four, five times in your day and those bites here and there WILL pack on the pounds and sabotage your weight loss goals.

So this week - resist the temptation to clean someone else’s plate. And while you're at it - make a conscious effort not to clean yours either. Think about your waistline instead of the food waste. Consider the calories in small portions and recognize how quickly they can add up when portions are multiplied:
  • 1 Twinkie: 150 calories
  • 12 peanut M&Ms: 125 calories
  • 1 ounce of French fries: 88 calories
  • 1.5 donut holes: 100 calories
  • 3 Hershey kisses: 75 calories
  • 3 Oreo cookies:160 calories
  • 15 tortilla chips: 142 calories
  • 20 potato chips: 162 calories
Not worth it in my book. And always remember - "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels!!"

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Sweet Sunday

Courtesy of Sport'n'Fitness

Need a healthy substitute for ice cream or sugary frozen treats? Try JELL-O Pudding Pops. I love treats like this for my night-time sweet tooth. Just the right amount to satisfy without a ton of calories.

Double the recipe and make a large batch in 3 oz. Dixie cups and keep on hand for those warm days. A big hit with the kids!

~Jello-O Pudding Pops~
What you'll need:
3 oz. Dixie cups
Wooden popsicle sticks
1 package JELL-O Chocolate Sugar-Free Pudding
2 cups Fat-Free Milk
1 cup Sugar-Free Cool Whip

1) Beat pudding mix & milk in medium bowl with whisk for about 2min
2 Stir in Sugar-Free Cool Whip
3) Spoon mix into small paper/plastic cups
4) Insert wooden sticks into the middle of each
5) Freeze for 4 hours or until firm.

To remove from cups, run under warm water.

I hope this ends your weekend on a sweet note!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Weekend Workout: 5-4-3-2-1

Do something good for yourself this weekend and take 15-45 min of couch time and get your heart pumping.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Fancy Friday: a MUST have

Alright all you heelaholics - you might just have found a new best friend. This week's fancy friday is all about Fab Feet's Blisstick - the invisible, protable, easy to use, no mess, heel protector!!

What does this lifesaver do?

1) Forms invisible barrier between skin and shoes to help eliminate rubbing and chaffing
2) Helps prevent blisters and calluses from forming

Say goodbye to those annoying, hurtful first-time wearing blisters that ruin your night and have you hobbling for days after.

Or what about those first few days of wearing flip flops? Especially the rubbery kind. Talk about chaffage on the upper foot. Wipe out the blisstick for this too!
To use it all you have to do is apply it wherever irritation occurs, you can use it anytime to soothe and moisturize skin, and reapply when needed.

Available at Target for $7.99. It's on an end cap in the shoe section.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

What's for dinner?

Love these perfectly portioned individual lasagnas from Skinnytaste.com. A low fat way to eat Italian and a great way to get your kids to eat spinach too. Look for the wheat lasagna noodles at your grocery store. Makes for an even healthier option. If you're crunched for time, make them the night before and plop in the oven when you get home.

~Spinach Lasagna Rolls~
Courtesy of Gina's Skinny Recipes

9 lasagna noodles, cooked
10 oz frozen chopped spinach, thawed and completely drained
15 oz fat free ricotta cheese (I like Polly-o)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg
salt and fresh pepper
32 oz tomato sauce
9 tbsp (about 3 oz) part skim mozzarella cheese, shredded

1) Preheat oven to 350°.
2) Combine spinach, ricotta, Parmesan, egg, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.
3) Spoon about 1 cup sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 12 baking dish.
4) Place a piece of wax paper on the counter and lay out cooked lasagna noodles. Make sure noodles are dry.
5) Take 1/3 cup of ricotta mixture and spread evenly over noodle.
6) Roll carefully and place seam side down onto the baking dish. Repeat with remaining noodles.
7) Ladle sauce over the noodles in the baking dish and top each one with 1 tbsp mozzarella cheese.
8) Put foil over baking dish and bake for 40 minutes, or until cheese melts. Makes 9 rolls.

To serve, spoon a little sauce on the plate with a side salad.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Target Addict: Mark your calendars

Target's new designer collaboration, as was evident in this feature story in the USA Today, debuts this Sunday, May 6th!! As if the Bullseye wasn't fabulous enough, it has teamed up with trendy shops from across the country to create affordable limited-edition goods for The Shops at Target.

The concept:  A savvy retail marketing approach much like more upscale retailers like Saks, Bloomingdales, Neiman Marcus and Fred Segal, Target will now offer various boutique stores within their store selling specialty goods.  The five collections total nearly 400 exclusive products both in-stores and online.

"The idea came from the fact that we have a lot of people who are out shopping the world all the time, looking for great new ideas, designers, trends," says Target's Home Division senior vice president Stacia Andersen. "As every single group would come back, they would keep saying, 'When you go to Miami, you have to go to The Webster!' or 'Have you been to Connecticut? You have to see Privet House!' It just kept coming back to these shops that we visited and how well-curated they were and how visionary the shop owners were."

In addition to The Webster (Home of Miami's passion for chic fashion) and Privet House (Vintage treasures with a bohemian-chic feel from Connecticut), the other shops include Cos Bar (Cutting edge beauty palace from Aspen) , Polka Dog Bakery (Biscuits and bones to drool over from Boston), and The Candy Store (Rare and wonderful sugary treats in glass jars from San Francisco).

Will you be stopping by to take a peak??
Shown here is one of Target's offerings from high-end Miami boutique,
The Webster: a wallet-friendly shift dress for just $40.