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.

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Ingredients:

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

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Directions:
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.

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Enjoy!

My Weekend Miles

This weekend I hit Zorinsky Lake to log some miles.  It’s been a little while and I was craving the wind in my face and the burn in my lungs.  My time is so limited between my full time, my teaching schedule at the Y and 24 Hour, work travel and a few side projects I have going that it is really hard for me to fit in much more.

So, this weekend, I made it a priority to get some running in.  And it was FABULOUS.

Saturday was COLD and so very windy.   Windy enough that I walked a .20 stretch before starting my run.   There is a tall portion at Zorinsky that has zero tree blockage.  I used that stretch as my warm up walk, but, once off that stretch it was go-time.

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Most of the trail is blocked by trees so the wind wasn’t too bad.   There were definitely spots along the 3.8 path that had some serious cross winds, but I kept a steady-ish pace and kept on pushing, ending with a fairly even pace.

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You can tell where the .20 mile stretch of walking was.  Right there between the green and red dot.  🙂  Holy wind and burning slow legs.  NO need to log that!

I just love running Zorinsky.  I’ve neglected it a lot this year, opting for the Papio/Keystone Trails instead.  Sometimes you just need a change of scenery, but I am definitely going to give a little more love to the lake again in the next few weeks.   Winter will be here too soon.

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Sunday I headed back out for another run.  Apparantly my body loves the 9.16 min per mile pace, because I hit it again.  This time I did brave the wind on the top stretch and logged 4.23 miles.   The wind wasn’t nearly as bad today – thankfully!

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I wore my HRM this time around to keep track of my heart rate and total calories burned.  I originally bought the Polar to track the amount of calories I’d burn while exercising.  Now I also use it to track my heart rate.  Keeping your heart rate up is important, but as a fitness instructor, I use it to make sure I don’t get it too high (don’t think the class wants me passing out) and I also track how long it takes for my heart rate to get back down to the normal range.

From my stats – I’ve got a good healthy ticker that recovers in no time!   Check that off the health charts!

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Side Note:  Monday Motivation

Today is the first day of an online accountability group I am facilitating.  I will be holding a lot of conversations on proper nutrition, hosting fitness challenges, providing motivation, sharing success stories, etc.  I have a group of 19 INCREDIBLE women involved.   Technically, this is Week 0.  I use this week to lay ground rules, do some prep work, and get the group ready to rock and roll.  This is my 7th group I have facilitated over the course of two years and I am excited to be doing it again.   If YOU are interested in joining, it isn’t too late.  Message me via email (harleysandheels@yahoo.com) by 9pm!

 

Cheers!

 

 

Healthier Apple Crisp

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October means Fall

And I think we can all agree that Fall means jeans, boots, hoodies, sweaters, soup, crock-pot meals, caramel apples, candy corn, football and apple crisp.

 

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Apple Crisp is a highly requested dessert in our house.   There is something SO YUMMY about warm apples and cinnamon.

Of course, I am always toying around with recipes attempting to make them just a little bit healthier.

For this recipe I went the oatmeal route instead of flour, substituted half of the butter for yogurt and used brown sugar substitute rather than regular brown sugar.  That last step is completely optional as it isn’t the ‘natural’ way, however, I like to use sugar substitutes on occasion.   All that added sugar creeps me out sometimes.

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I used an obsessive amount of cinnamon in this recipe.  I can’t get enough of the smell or taste.  You might find it to be a bit of an overkill.  If so, take it down a notch, but don’t tell me.   I’ll think less of you.

🙂

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The recipe is incredibly easy and takes no time to put together and throw it in the oven.   Your house will be smelling like fall goodness in 5 minutes flat.

 

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The husband wanted you to know that he approves, but, I also want you to note the amount of melted ice cream in that bowl.

 

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And THAT ladies and gents, is exactly why I try and make recipes healthier.

Healthier Apple Crisp

 

Enjoy!

 

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Tranformations Take Time – My Two Years

Transformations take on many different shapes and sizes.

  • Physical Transformation
  • Emotional Transformation
  • Psychological Transformation
  • Social Transformation

Two and a half years ago I set out on a physical transformation.   Little did I know that the process would also take me on an emotional and psychological journey as well.

I had never been a ‘fit’ girl.  Growing up, no one would have called me athletic either.   I am not competitive or aggressive in the manner that is required in sports.  I was active, but not overly active.  I was interested in fitness, but never followed through. I became NETA certified and taught aerobics and weight training at my hometown gym in my early twenties, but let it go around the age of 24.

I went through a major life change at 25 that put me in a new city, newly single, no job and away from the only lifestyle I had known.   There was nothing wrong with my “old life”.  In fact, most people would have found it comforting and right on track with a normal life progression.  I was surrounded by good people, family, a nice country home and the start of a good career.

But for me, I needed change.

I was longing for something different outside of my small hometown.   And so, at 25 I set out for the new.   My “new life” provided a few challenges, but it was also the best decision I had ever made for myself.   My new life gave me new freedoms, a new career, a new degree path, new focus, new friends, old friends,  late nights and a lot of parties.

 Life. Was. Good.  

And I was eating it all up.

Literally.

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I was comfortable.  I met my now-husband after moving to the city and we grew our circle of friends together.   We lived the rock star lifestyle, if you will.  He worked weekends at a bar.  I frequented the bar with my girlfriends.   We ate bad food, drank far too much and lived it up.

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Clint loved me regardless of my size, weight and always came back with “you are beautiful” when I would stand in front of my mirror trying on multiple outfits, never happy with what I saw.

I had become so unhappy with how I looked and felt. 

December of 2011 I decided I had enough.   I was tired of hating the way my clothes felt.  I was tired of hiding in the corner when we went out because I hated the way I looked.  I was tired.

January 2012 New Years Resolution –  Kick my exercise habits in gear.

Knowing my lack of follow-through on anything fitness related, I knew I needed something with structure.   I researched quite a few home videos before ordering TurboFire.   I chose Turbo for its fun rhythms, kickboxing undertones and the structured 8 count.   The cheerleader and music teacher in me knew I’d fall in love with this program.   Once I fell in love, I knew I could stick with it.

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I’ll be honest.  The first few weeks were rough.   Finding the TIME was difficult.  Finding the ambition after a long work day was torture.

But, I did it.

I made my ‘basement workouts’ a part of my daily life.

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Once I got the fitness part down, tackling the nutrition came next.   And this was and still is the hardest part for me.   I began to incorporate more protein, limit the carb intake to my early meals, limit the sugar and add in more vegetables.   I also started to incorporate Shakeology in my diet, just like I was told to via TurboFire.

See, sometimes I DO follow orders!  😉

 I have to disclose that I did NOT use this as an entire meal replacement nor did I drink it daily.  Sometimes shakes gross me out!   I used my shakes as either a meal 2 or 4.   Why?   Because of the nutrition content.   Never once did I replace a lunch or dinner.  That game just isn’t for me.

So, what about my Turbo results?  

Down an overall 8 inches and 13 pounds.

I was on a ROLL!

I felt good, I was looking better, my confidence was building, I enjoyed shopping a little more, much to the dismay of my wallet.

And I was LOVING working out.  It had become my addiction.

No, better yet…

my PASSION.

Fast forward to January 2013.   I set a goal to run my first half-marathon.

I kept it a secret from everyone for a long time.

Why?

Fear of Failure

I won’t get in the story of my training, as you can read it here.  What did happen is I followed through, I conquered, I cried, I laughed, I LIVED!

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So, what about this two year transformation?

Physical:  Down an overall 13 inches and 20 pounds.

Psychological: A changed mindset.  I COULD do things I never thought I could before.

Physical, Psychological, Emotional and Personal:  I became a Nationally Certified Fitness Instructor through AFAA and also became certified in TurboFire and Insanity formats.

 

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Who knew in two short years I would gain the confidence to stand in front of a class again and TEACH?   My physical transformation took on a whole new life.

Transformations Take Time

1 year it took me to get hooked on fitness.

1 year it took me to lose and maintain a 13 pound loss.

1.25 years it took me me to run a half-marathon.

1.5 years it took me to gain the confidence and courage to study, test and become AFAA certified to teach group exercise classes

1.5 years it took me to become certified in TurboKick

2 years it took me to lose 20 pounds.

And guess what?

2 months this last summer it took me to add 7 pounds back on.

But, you know what?

That’s ok.  I know where I faltered.  Nutrition.   It’s a tough game to play.   And this Harley chick loves Vodka, Burgers, Fries and Beer.

You know what else?   I have already lost 3 of that 7.

And one more thing…

The scale means NOTHING.

It’s only part of the story.

So, what now?

No, I am still not the media’s definition of physically fit.  I could still stand to drop my body fat %.  I could still gain a lot by adding in weight training consistently.

BUT, physically, I CAN knock out teaching 6 classes a week.  I can still keep up, I can keep the class motivated, I can maintain proper form and crank out those advanced Insanity moves, each and every time.

Psychologically I have my head in the game.  I have a clear focus.  I am determined.  I have goals.

I have one MAJOR goal set to accomplish by December 2014.

Am I going to make it?

Ya, duh!

Am I going to tell you?

Heck NO I’m not.

I still have a fear of failure.  Who doesn’t?

I am still human, I still have flaws, I still make mistakes.

But, I am emotionally there.  Physically there.  Psychologically there.

 

I can’t be stopped now.

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Women of Harley: Tyree S.

Harleys & Heels | Biker Bitch Feature #6 | Tyree S.

 

Meet: Tyree

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1. How long have you been riding?

I grew up on a farm and can remember riding little dirt bikes around the age of 10, maybe even a little younger.  As for a street bike, I have owned my Harley for 4 years now.

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2. What do you ride?

2008 Harley Dyna Street Bob.

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3. How many bikes have you owned and why did you choose your current model?

 One, because it looked good on me.

 

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4. Does your bike have a name?

 No, but she is my baby girl!

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5. Tell us the story behind why/when you decided to ride your own bike?

I met Jordan the summer of 2007 and thought she was a pretty amazing lady.  I admired her for riding her own.

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Tyree and Yours Truly

Fast forward a few years when my brother came to live with me.  He was daring enough to let me ride his Honda Shadow and it was then I realized how much I still loved “going outside to play” and knew I had to get my own!

 

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Tyree and her brother, Clint

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6. Do you have a biker who is your inspiration?

My Dad.

I remember being a kid and he would have my sister sitting on the tank sitting “criss-cross applesauce” and me on the back with my feet thrown up over his legs so I wouldn’t get burned by the pipes. Dad would do some of the craziest dirt bike stunts and I thought he was so cool!  He really taught me how to ride.

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Tyree’s dad and mom


7. What are some of you favorite things about the biker lifestyle?

The friends and people you meet. It is like no other!! A respect and love for something that is so rejuvenating, thrilling and that gives a since of strength, power, and freedom.

It is something that someone who doesn’t ride, can’t understand.

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A few of the BB’s.  Regeana, Marcy, Elizabeth, Jen, Tracy, Me & Tyree

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8. Give us one of your favorite two-wheeled stories.

How can I pick just one?

Every “B!tch” ride has been amazing and the long trips to bike rallies are some of the best trips I’ve ever been on.  Even just jumping on a back winding road with one of your biker friends is a memorable event just the same.

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Back Road Shenanigans : Tyree & Jordan style

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9. What advice would you give other females who are thinking about riding their own?

Do it!!!! If you have ever thought about it, it is so worth it.

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10.  There are many “Biker Codes” out there.  If you had a favorite what would it be?

Bikers have a brotherhood and sisterhood like no other. 

Unlike so many groups, bikers truly are a family, and bikers live by a code of respect.

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11. Final words?

Life is short, break the rules, forgive quickly, love honestly, laugh easy, keep it simple, ride often, ride free and never regret anything that makes you smile!

And, my dad always said “I work hard, and I play just as hard as I work“.

Thanks, Dad.

That’s the way I am choosing to live my life as well.

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Cheers!

 

Keep up-to-date on all Biker Bitch Features:

#1: Ashley H.

#2: Jen M.

#3: Chris Y.

#4: Lora

#5: DeAnn

 

You might also be interested in:

The 9th Annual B!tch Ride

The Making of the Biker B!tch Crew