60 Healthier Toaster Oven Recipes

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If you can deny that this looks delicious, you are not human. Or hungry.

I thought I would share a link to 60 Healthier Toaster Oven Recipes for everyone to begin their week. I knew it would be a bad idea to look at Food Porn on a Monday morning after a measly bowl of Life cereal, but I did it anyways. Currently living with the consequences. Excuse me while I shop for ramekins on Amazon.com…

Enjoy!

~Jess

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Epic. Weekend.

Epic. Weekend.

I must say, I had the most epic weekend.

Derek and I went to see Glitch Mob at the Showbox Sodo in Downtown Seattle last night. It was pretty FREAKIN’ epic! Words can’t even describe how incredible their performance was last night, I couldn’t stop smiling and was nearly on the verge of tears, such an emotional experience for sure. They put on the best show I’ve ever witnessed, hands down.

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I can’t even begin to describe the overpowering magnetic sensation when they turned on their instruments and tore down the black tarp to reveal their set. As my friend Ian said, it felt like a bass massage when they started revving up equipment, I’m getting freakin’ chills just thinking about it! Their stage performance was amazing, completely different than their ‘Drink the Sea Tour’ 4 years ago. Both performances were extraordinary, but I loved their new flavor. I couldn’t stop staring, these guys are truly in sync with their music and love and appreciate their fans more than anything.

I realized that Derek and I have been loyal fans for years, at least 5 years and their music has been the soundtrack of our lives. When Derek and I first met 4 1/2 years ago we went to their ‘Drink the Sea’ concert at the Showbox and fell in love with their song ‘Between Two Points’ and eventually became engaged, choosing that song ‘Between Two Points’ to be our wedding song. We remained loyal fans over the years as they worked on their new album ‘Love, Death, Immortality’ which seemed to be an eternity before it was finally released. For our 2 year anniversary this February we went to our friends gorgeous cabin in the mountains of Twisp and had an amazing time sitting by the fire place in leather recliner chairs basking in the sunlight through the windows with an amazing epic snow landscape, listening to their new album ‘Love, Death, Immortality’ from front to back on repeat. It was a surreal experience. You can imagine how awestruck we were when we saw them live last night, they were everything I had imagined and more.

After the show we waited to meet them, thank them for returning to Seattle and putting on a good show, and take a picture with them. Perfect night, I couldn’t have asked for a better weekend. Derek and I got to spend quality time with each other as well, something we haven’t done in a really REALLY long time.

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Before we went to the show, he took me to his school and showed me around campus. It was really cool to finally see where he spends a lot of his time studying, not to mention a lot of money on tuition! πŸ˜‰ Seattle University is a very impressive school, I say Derek is spoiled!Β After he gave me the short version of the campus tour, we went to Rock Bottom Brewery for their delicious Cheesy Jalepeno Pretzel Sticks & Cheese Dip, 2 A.M Burger with their famous Mac n’ Cheese, and of course some delicious brews. We also deep cleaned our house earlier Saturday, which NEEDED to happen! We had a fun AND productive weekend, it was really nice to come home last night at 1:30am to a clean house, shower, and freshly made bed with clean sheets!

We didn’t end up going to bed last night until 4am! Derek woke up at 11:30am to do homework, and I slept in till 1:30pm, you can imagine how weird I felt waking up with have the day gone. O! I have positive news that IS health related! This morning I woke up and my bloat had banished! Hell yeah! I was starting to get really depressed, I thought I was going to remain soft and unsightly forever, possibly put on even MORE weight! I was drowning my sorrows in food too, I couldn’t stop eating all week. My bloating had gotten so uncomfortable and painful, last night being the peak of it. It felt my internal organs were expanding, burning, and possibly exploding. I know, disgusting. BUT…. this morning I woke up a deflated much healthier size! Of course I’m not in ‘peak week’ condition, but I put on 2 extra inches around my waist and I couldn’t be more happy with how I feel mentally and physically. I’m so excited to hit the gym tomorrow, eat so much better, and find a healthy maintainable balance in my life.

To be honest, I won’t be competing again in the future. I feel like I damaged my body more than anything throughout the entire process. It seems so contradictory to promote ‘health and fitness’ with poor nutrition, improperly fueling your body, having to decrease your lifting weight because you’re so weak, and going through desperate measures such as taking water pills and depleting your body the week before a competition. It’s just not my cup of tea. I enjoy working out, getting stronger, and sweating for the mental benefits, endorphin rush, and of course physical benefits. However, aesthetics aren’t the only important benefits of being physically active and ‘dieting’. I’m worth a lot more than what I spent on my competition, and 3 minutes of stage time. The last 6 months wrecked havoc on my mind, body, and family life. I couldn’t put my family through that kind of strain again, they deserve better and I deserve better.

Yes, I learned a lot, and it was a positive experience in many ways. Body building isn’t my calling, my passion, or where I belong. There are other outlets of fitness and health I would rather take that would make me feel so much healthier and happier. Stick around and see what I do next! Thanks for following my journey this far, I still have a ways to go πŸ™‚

~Jess

 

M.I.A

Wow, I feel like I’ve been M.I.A! I’m used to being so on top of it and writing a blog entry per day!

If you’ve been following my posts for a while now, you know I’ve been going through some major changes. One of the biggest changes recently has been my job. This week marked the beginning of my Opening Shift career at the EBC! Sounds silly. No promotion, no raise, just a shift change. This is extremely MONUMENTAL for me though. I have suffered over a year of Closing Shift. Okay, okay, I make it sound terrible, but there are so many positive uplifting factors to being on the Opening Shift:

1) The Opening Shift is 6:00am to 2:30pm….. BAM! I went to work today? But I’m done with my day before kids are outta school…. AND I don’t have homework, SWEET!

2) If money is an issue, I have time for a second job.

3) If I should choose to enroll in school, my new shift allows more freedom with choosing class times.

4) I have the opportunity to really focus on my passion: fitness.

5) I can hang out with friends! I can MAKE friends! Maybe my friends will want to workout with me too! Ya think?!

6) It’s almost like I’m a stay-at-home-wife…. *psh* almost. I can make dinner, every single night! Why am I excited about this? I don’t know. O yeah, cause I can experiment with the crock pot and all the recipes I would pin on my Pinterest when I was working the Closing Shift.

7) I can enjoy my summer, enjoy the daylight, and maybe even get a tan that isn’t from a tanning bed.

8) I can run outside, IN THE SUN! Night time runs were nice, but summer is coming up and I’m itching to hit the pavement.

9) Overall, there’s just a lot of B.S I don’t have to put up with anymore that I had been putting up with for over a year.

10) I’m happy. I’m finally happy and even though it’s only been week #1, my quality of life has improved immensely.

 

Yep. I’m pretty freakin’ stoked about my current situation. I’d also like to mention that my new training plan and diet plan is amazing, I’m seeing great results with the added cardio and cutting out more fat and carbs and just eating smarter in general. I think I got this shit down to the ‘T’. My abs are beginning to hang around ALL day. My obliques are stickin’ around, and I have abs on my ribs?! Whaaaaa?! I’ll take it! My pants are literally HANGING off of me. My old work pants no longer hug my waist and feel tight right after they come out of the dryer. They hang off my hips and feel like sweat pants, they are even longer! My other pair of black ‘jeggings’ fit extremely loose as well, even my underwear are too big! I received a compliment at the gym today from a trainer, they said I had great squat form, which was VERY reassuring because I never know if I’m doing it right. No spotter for me sadly 😦 I think I have a chance at First Call Outs…. feeling hopeful!

I should be receiving my first package from my new sponsor ‘Femme’ this week! Really excited to try out their new products! Skin firming creams, protein shakers, and supplements YES PLEASE! OOoooo! By the way! I have a new project that I’m gonna be working on this weekend πŸ™‚ The idea was inspired by a fellow seasoned Bikini Competitor that I follow on Facebook. The project is a ‘Reward Box’ for post competition! The idea is to fill the box up with all the goodies that you are deprived from during your prep to bring with you to your show. Post show you enjoy your goodies and share with fellow competitors, mingle, make friends, and get carb/sugar loaded! Super pumped! My box isn’t as big right now 😦 I have a small one I’m going to decorate, I’m gonna start filling it this weekend when we go on our Bi Monthly Costco escapade. Shopping at Costco has been SOOOO hard for the past few months. I have to buy the same damn things over and over: chicken, turkey, eggs, veggies, plain fat free yogurt etc. while passing the delicious Limoncello Almonds, Coconut, Chocolate Macadamias, and so many other delicious goodies! Now I have the satisfaction of purchasing things, KNOWING that the second I step off stage after Finals, I can eat to my hearts content and don’t have to wait till we get to the restaurant to order nachos (knowing it’s gonna be PACKED)!

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Sooooo excited! I’m gonna start that NOW!

Goodnight everybody! Once again, I’m sorry for my recent disappearance, but I shall return once I’m settled into my new schedule πŸ™‚ Stay tuned! Have a great week πŸ™‚

~Jess

Turkey Omelet

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Looking for a quick, delicious, protein-packed breakfast? You can easily pack this Turkey Egg White omelet for lunch as well.

Ingredients:

-1/2 cup liquid egg whites
-4oz ground turkey
-Cayenne and/or chili pepper
-Red Pepper flakes
-2 tablespoons Sabra hummus to taste

Directions:

-Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil on medium in saucepan
-Pour 1/2 cup liquid egg whites into pan, once egg whites become less transparent and more white, sprinkle spices
-Pour 4oz cooked ground turkey into the center and fold when completely cooked to resemble and omelet, forgive my poor omelet folding skills!
(I always keep prepared ground turkey on hand during the week for omelet’s, burritos, salad topping, etc.)
-For extra zest, flavor, and excitement, top with 2 tablespoons of hummus, or as much as your heart desires!

ENJOY!

Nutrition: Calories- 303 Carbs- 5g Protein- 36g Fat- 13g

MMmmm, yummy Shredded Chicken Whole Wheat Wrap

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Just thought I would share my delicious lunch πŸ™‚

I haven’t been feeling well the past few days, so I’ve had to make my own lunch at home since I haven’t been able to eat my free lunch from work. Nothing too elaborate, but freakin’ delicious and filling! Quick, easy, and I could eat it every day.

Ingredients:Β 

-1 La Factory Low Carb Whole Wheat Tortilla
-3 oz shredded chicken (best cooked in the crock-pot!)
-1 tablespoon Sabra Hummus
-1 oz Eat Smart Kale Salad mix (bought from Costco! No dressing)

Enjoy!

~Jess