Weekend in Review 1 | March 2015

FINALLY, the weather is turning warm here in Nebraska.  I was riding the winter funk train last week and we were going fast with no stop in sight.   Seriously… worst funk I’ve had in a long time!   Luckily, the weekend really helped get me out of that nonsense.

Friday night after getting home from work, Clint started a bonfire, I grabbed the beer, turned on some solid country tunes and just sat taking in the calm surroundings.

And Champ’s disgusting kisses.


 At one point Clint went inside to clean up before dinner and I took that moment to really crank the tunes, sing to myself, savor my beer and just relish the peacefulness.

Ahhh…  I needed that.


After my hour of decompressing we headed out to Maria’s for some good ol’ Mexican food.   Taco’s to be exact.  Holy moly, I know I have mentioned how good that place is in the past, but if you have yet to test it out, please do so.



Saturday I taught Insanity at 24 Hour Fitness | Cass Street location.  We had a solid class showing and kicked that workouts bootay.  Legit Badasses.


At 11, I met up with Tyree for some much needed girl talk time.   I think we killed a solid 1.5 hours, if not more.   We met up at Muscle Maker Grill in West Omaha.  This place was so good and strategically placed next to Lifetime Fitness and a few other health and wellness shops.  Well played, Muscle Makers.  Well played.

Go check them out here.

muscle maker.

The rest of my day can be summed up in Bud Light, Vehicle TLC and sunshine.







After Photo.  She’s downright GLOWING.  As is her owner. 🙂



And this baby got to see sunshine for the first time in months.  Her heart is happy as well.


PERFECT little Saturday.

Sunday I was able to meet up with my friend Blair to get in 6 miles at Zorinsky Lake.  It was a gorgeous morning for it, too.  It’s about time I started running again.  I’ve got a half marathon in two months.  EEK!  I HAVE to beat my 2 hour time.  1:59 is my goal time this year. 🙂


The rest of Sunday incorporated a little shopping, cleaning, laundry… you know.  The usual Sunday stuff.

With that, I will leave you screenshots of my Saturday FB funny.  Hands-down the BEST Insanity conversation I have had to date.  Poor guy.




For The Love of Teaching

What is that saying…

Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.

How many can say that they truly love what they do?

The percentage is probably low if I was guessing.   If you can say you LOVE what you do, then you relate to that quote above.   You get it. You live it.  You freaking LOVE it.

I enjoy my day job.  My career.  My 7:30-4:30 position.  It has its perks, rewards, flexibility and stability that I need.   But, I would still call it work.   It’s work.  It’s why I have two Master’s degrees.  I have this position because I worked for it and will continue to work to stay on top of it all.

But, I also do something I love.   I would go crazy without my side gig.

It’s the peanut butter to my apple.

The protein to my shake.

The icing on my cake.




I started teaching fitness classes back in 2003.  I stumbled into it thanks to Frances Furst, my first Group X instructor.  She encouraged me to seek a National Certification and so I did. I taught in my small hometown gym, The Clarinda Lied Center, and also at the Clarinda Academy where I taught to the youth.

It was my escape.  It was my therapy.

It kept my mind going when I was internally struggling with some life decisions.

I loved it.   Absolutely loved it.



And then three years later I found myself going through a major life change, a risky change, a move to the city of Omaha with no job lined up and I let my teaching fall to the wayside.  It wasn’t until a few years later when I started taking back control of ME and my well-being that I contemplated getting back into the fitness industry again.   I started taking classes with my friend and mentor, Carrie McDonald, and through her encouragement and gentle pushing I found myself Nationally Certified again and on my way back to the front of the class.  Carrie, THANK YOU, for being that push, that support, that confirmation that I truly needed.

Man, am I ever so glad to be here.



I love the push it gives me to keep working towards a healthier me.




I love the feeling I get when I walk around the room to help motivate others to keep pushing.  I see the struggle.  I’ve been there… I STILL go there.  It isn’t always easy for me.  If it was then that means I am not pushing hard enough.

I like to help people push to their max because we are all far stronger then we ever possibly imagined.

And when they realize it?

That look.  That moment of “Hell YA!  I just did that” makes it all worth it.



I love feeding off the energy, the excitement, the nerves and the hard work that a Group X class brings.




And I love celebrating with the class when we make it to the end.  That feeling of pure satisfaction and accomplishment is freaking awesome.   Trust me when I say you can FEEL it come alive right there on the floor.   We work hard together, we sweat massive puddles together, we scream because it HURTS together, and then I hi-five the hell out of the class when we are done.

WE did it.  WE made it.




I take this love of teaching in the physical classroom and translate that into the online environment as well.  I have found my other love is in online accountability groups.

As a fitness coach, I help people choose exercise programs that will work into their schedule and lifestyle.   And then together we WORK.   We work on nutrition plans, exercise routines and we talk through barriers.

I want to help people see their worth, their need for physical and mental well-being and I want to help them become healthy and fit.  Does that always mean losing weight?  Absolutely not.

It’s about strength, mental focus, self-confidence and overall health.

And you know what these little groups have done?   They change ME.  My peeps help keep me motivated and accountable.

I love being a fitness instructor.

I love being a coach.

I LOVE what I do.



I thank my class attendees for making my job ridiculously fun!

I thank my online accountability clients for making my job rewarding!

I thank my hubby for allowing me to keep up a crazy schedule to continue to do more of what I love.

I am thankful for this job that I have.  This job is the absolute best job on Earth.

The best job for ME.


Quinoa and Black Bean Taco Bake

A New Twist on Taco Tuesday!


Quinoa (keen-wah) is one food I’ve been trying to incorporate into our recipes for the last year.   I love the nutty flavor and rich nutrients in this super-food.

My Top 5 Reasons for Being Team Quinoa

1. High in protein — it has more protein compared to rice or wheat.
2. A good source of riboflavin — riboflavin helps reduce the frequency attacks in migraine sufferers by improving the energy metabolism within the brain and muscle cells.
3. It only has 172 calories per ¼ cup dry quinoa.
4. Since it is not related to wheat or grain, it’s gluten-free. Millions are discovering they feel better and lose weight when they reduce gluten grains or at least wheat products.
5. It is a complex carbohydrate with low glycemic index. This is again good for weight management.




The ingredient list looks daunting, but don’t let that deter you.  There are a lot of spices and the rest of the ingredients are simple.

Quinoa Black Bean Taco Bake


Clint was a huge fan, having two bowls!   We paired it with Organic Blue Corn Chips and it was delicious.





Peanut Butter Banana Bread with PB and Chocolate Chips

For the last three of days I have had three very brown bananas just begging to be put to use.  I put them in my refrigerator for two of those three days knowing if I didn’t, they’d be a mushy mess by the time I got around to using them.

Finally last night, at 8:45pm no less, I decided to throw together some banana bread.  I mean, who wouldn’t want to do that at bed time?  To add fuel to the fire, I knew I didn’t want to make the traditional boring banana bread so asked Clint what he thought about Peanut Butter Banana Bread.

“Ya, sure. Why not” was the response, so off to the kitchen I went.

The recipe I found was originally from Six Sisters, but the ingredients I had in my cabinet were not, so a little improvising was required.

The end result?

Delicious – according to my taste tester.



3 ripe bananas
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup natural applesauce
1 egg
1/2 cup Stevia
1/4 cup brown sugar OR 2 Tbsp. Delecta (brown sugar substitute)
1 1/2 cups wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup peanut butter chips & 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease loaf pan.

Mix together bananas, peanut butter, applesauce, egg and sugars.

Add in flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  Do not over mix.

In a large bowl stir together bananas, peanut butter, oil, egg and sugars.

Fold in peanut butter and chocolate chips and spread batter into prepared pan.

Bake for about 1 hour or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.

Let cool in pan for 5 minutes, then transfer bread to a cooling rack.