Interval Training

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

So have you been running 2 miles consistently for the last two months and don't feel like you are getting faster or seeing weight lose results? Listen up cause I have some advice that will get over the plateau.

The key to increasing your speed over time in a race and to help with the weight lose process is by integrating interval training into your running routine.

Here are a few workouts that you can do near your local high school track:

Workout #1:

10 minute warm up

2 X 400m As fast as possible

Rest at a complete stop as long as it took to do the 400m

5 X 200m As fast as possible

Rest at a complete stop as long as it took to the 200m

10 minute walk/jog cool down


Workout #2:

5 minute warm up

5 x 400m As fast as possible

Walk 400m during the recovery

5 min walk/jog cool down


Workout #3:

Warm up (jog) 5 minutes

3 x 800m

Jog 400m recovery

2 x 400m

Jog 200m recovery

Cool down (jog) 5 minutes

Do these intervals at 70-75% of your race pace

Give some of these a try!

Have a great weekend! I am off to Alabama!

Beach in the Backyard

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

We are in the process of revamping our backyard. There are quite a few outdoor projects that we have slowly been working on every Saturday. All projects(minus the one that I am showing you today) are about 50% done. None would make it to being 100% done, if we hadn’t built this first…


The previous owners of our home had built a special place to put their patio furniture.It was a 7 ft by 7 ft box. We thought it was kind of strange. It was something that really had no use to us. We felt it was just taking up space in the back yard. We wanted to do something with it that would benefit us. So we asked ourselves, what could we do with this space? And the answer… an awesome sandbox!

Outdoor projects-2

We started by taking all of the stone off and temporarily relocating it to other parts of the yard.

Next we dug out most of the dirt and relocated that to other parts of the yard.

Then we dug deep holes to hold our pvc pipe.

Then we rolled out the landscaping fabric, cut it to size, and secured it to the ground with landscaping staples.

Then we poured in the sand!

And of course, our son just patiently waited till this was done :) More like tried to crawl out of his swing.

Next step was to paint the pvc pipe. We sprayed it with a plastic primmer first. I recommend that you paint the pipes before putting them in the ground. I am not entirely sure why we put the pipes in before we painted them.

The last piece to this back yard beach was the awning. The awning and the pennant banner were made from duck cloth. Because of it’s size, I had to purchase two 2 1/2 yards of the navy duck cloth. Each piece was 60 x 90 inches. I needed an 80 x 80 inch piece. I had to cut the cloth down to a 60 x 80 inch piece and a 60 x 20 inch piece. Then I sewed those together. For the ties, I just hot glued pieces of twine to the end of the cloth. Then I just tied the twine around the pvc pipe. I was worried that it would slide down the pipe, but it doesn’t. It stays!
It is my sons favorite place to play. Yesterday, while I went to go get his swimsuit, he escaped out the back door to go play. Oh to be 14 months old, with not a care in the world, and the only thing required for playtime is a diaper and some crocs.

This has been a dream. I could not get any of my other outdoor projects done if it wasn’t for this backyard beach.

It’s my sons place to just lounge and read a book while taking a nice relaxing soak in the pool, or while reclining back in his perfectly pint sized chair.

The genius part about this being a sandbox/pool is that I can just hose him down before he comes inside. That way no sand gets inside my house.

This has been the perfect place to play. Although, my son better watch out for the zucchini growing behind him. It has already over taken the carrots. Hopefully it doesn’t overtake the sandbox too ;)
DSC06177 DSC06146-1

Also, I updated my JCrew knock off- Breezy Summer Skirt. I just had to add those pleats. Feel free to check it out again.

What to eat before and after exercise

Friday, June 24, 2011

Before exercise carbohydrates are most essential. Make sure to eat 1-2 g carbohydrates/kg of body weight 2 hours before exercise.

Each piece of food is an example of a pre workout snack:

Wheat Toast – 12 g/piece of bread
Oatmeal – 31 g/ instant pack
Banana – about 25 g CHO
Orange Juice (8 oz) - 24 g CHO

After exercise a combination of carbohydrates and proteins are most important. Below are tips for the perfect combo:

• Ratio of 1 gram of protein per 3 grams carbohydrate
• Consume 50-100 g carbohydrate within an hour of exercise
• A glass of milk is great for after a workout. It has a good mix of carbohydrate and protein.

Examples of after workout snacks:

Light Yogurt – 5 g protein and 19 g Carbs
¼ cup granola – 4 g protein and 14 g Carbs
8 oz of milk – 8 g protein and 13 g Carbs
Tuna (1/4 cup) and a slice of bread- 13 g protein and 12 g Carbs
Hummus and ½ Pita Bread- 3 g protein and 13 g Carbs + 6 g protein and 15 g Carb

Coupon Lingo

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

When starting to coupon it can be very overwhelming. There is so much information and a lot of things to learn. When looking at websites that post deals, like some of the ones that I have talked about HERE and HERE, there will always be coupon abbreviations. This can only add to the confusion. Hopefully I can help clear up any confusion. Please feel free to ask any questions. I want to help, and I want you to love to coupon!

P&G: Procter & Gamble Sunday insert
RP: Red Plum
SS: SmartSource
$1/1, $1/2: One dollar off one item, one dollar off two items, etc.
B1G1: Buy one item get one item free
B2G1: Buy two items get one item free
Beep: Sometimes the register will beep when a coupon is scanned to indicate that the cashier need to take an action, like entering a price.
Blinkies: Grocery/drugstore coupon dispensers with blinking lights
Catalina: Catalina coupon, prints from a separate machine when your receipt prints
CRT: Cash register tape, usually used when referring to CVS coupons that print with receipt
DND: Do not double
ECBs: ExtraCare Bucks, CVS loyalty rewards system
ETS: Excludes trial size
Exp.: Expires
GC: Gift card
IVC: Instant Value Coupon, Walgreens' store coupons found in ads and monthly booklet
MIR: Mail-in rebate
OYNO: On your next order
OOP: Out of pocket
OOS: Out of stock
Peelie: Peel-off coupon found on product packaging
RRs: Register Rewards, Walgreens' Catalina coupons
Q: Coupon
SCR: Single Check Rebate, Rite Aid monthly rebates program
Stacking: Using both a manufacturer's coupon and a store coupon on one item
UPC: Universal product code, bar code
Tearpad: Pad of coupons attached to a display, shelf, or refrigerator door.
+UP Reward: Rite Aid reward program
WYB: When you buy
YMMV: Your mileage (or manager) may vary, meaning some stores might give you a deal but others might not

Breezy Summer Skirt- JCrew Knock Off

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A couple months back I was in JCrew and upon immediately walking into the store, I fell in love with this skirt. I am sharing the picture of the skirt that I took from inside the store. You can find it online here, but I don’t think the online picture really does the skirt justice.

2011-05-02 11.30.38

Here is the version that I created. With the original skirt having price tag of $98 and the fact that it was too short, I knew that I would be making my own.


I love this skirt. It is almost as comfortable as yesterdays skirt. It is a sheer material. It is nice and lightweight, giving it a breezy summer feel. So that is exactly what I am calling it.


For the tutorial, click HERE.


The 411 on Vitamins

Monday, June 20, 2011

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Walgreens. All opinions are 100% mine.

I have never been a huge vitamin supplement consumer until I learned more about the importance vitamins in our diet. Most Americans don't reach the recommended daily vitamin amount, including me. Because we don't get enough vitamins in our daily diet it is important to use vitamin supplements.

Let me share some insights on the wonderful benefits of the different vitamins on our bodies:

Helps with bone growth (Vit D)
Promotes clearer vision (Vit A)
Helps promotes carbohydrate metabolism (Vit B2)
Helps maintain healthy skin (Vit B3)
Maintains nerve, gut, and skin tissue
Helps promote formation of red and white blood cells (Folic Acid)
Helps with iron absorption (VIt C)

After going to the doctor a month ago and complaining about bad tension headaches, she recommended I take two 400 I.U. of vitamin E per day to help relieve the pain or get rid of the headaches.  While picking up a prescription at the Walgreens pharmacy I grabbed a bottle of the Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Vitamin E supplements. It was a very competitive price compared to the other brands and it was convenient to pick up while picking up my prescription.

Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Products are a great value, allowing families and individuals to save money without sacrificing quality or trust. With the rising cost of health care, saving money on over-the-counter medications can really benefit a family’s budget. In addition to being an exceptional value, Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Products:

a. Are Walgreens pharmacist recommended.
b. Most contain the same active ingredients as other national brands.
c. Have a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Visit Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Products to learn more about Walgreens vitamins and other Health & Wellness Products.

Purchase of every Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Product supports bringing preventive wellness services to local communities through the Walgreens Way to Well Fund™.

For Walgreens gift card giveaways, check this link: giveaways




Visit Sponsor's Site

The Comfy Skirt- JCrew Knock Off

I have spent the past couple of weeks working on outdoor projects. It has been a lot of fun, and I can’t wait to start sharing them with you next week. But because I have been working outside, I felt my sewing machine being neglected on the inside. One night while in a “missing my sewing machine” mood, I finally got around to making a couple of skirts. There were two JCrew skirts that I had been dying to recreate. I had picked up the fabric for each months ago. I decided that it was finally time to put that fabric to use. I’ll share one skirt with you today, and another one with your tomorrow.

Here is the first JCrew skirt that I wanted to create. I had seen this in the store a few months ago. I snapped a photo of it with the camera on my phone, hence the poor quality. I would have loved to have purchased it, but it was too short for me. (Also, I tried to find a picture of this online, but I couldn’t. They must not sell this anymore.)

2011-05-02 11.44.52

Here is my version. I wanted the exact skirt. I found a fabric in a close enough color. It is solid burnt orange. The fabric is cotton. It is the most comfortable skirt that I have ever worn. That is why I named it the comfy skirt.


The waistband was created by adding three 1/8 inch elastic bands, with some spacing in between. I am sure a similar look could be created by shirring and using elastic thread. I wanted to to get as close of a replica as I could, and the JCrew skirt used elastic bands.



I also made one for my niece. Check out the tutorial Here.



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