DC Eats & A Naturebox Review

33 Comments

What a weekend! I spent most of it in DC, visiting friends, eating amazing food, and seeing Tiesto. You know. Typical.

dc adventures

Tiesto was amazing, and I loved trying so many new restaurants in the city. One of my favorite dishes was the dolsot bibimbap (bottom left photo) which was a Korean dish made with rice, vegetables, tofu, and an egg, served in a hot stone bowl. The bowl continues to cook the food, so the rice gets crispier as you eat it. I’d never had anything like it before and it was delicious.

I also got to meet up with lots of bloggers at Northside Social, for a Virginia Bloggers meet up. The cafe was cute, and it was fun meeting some new faces! Ethel, Rana, Coco, Ileana, and Ashley and I enjoyed some coffee while chatting about blogging, Virginia, and future meet up ideas. (Bartending class anyone?) Stay tuned for more on that!

While running from one activity to the next, I did do some serious snacking. The lovely folks at Naturebox offered to send me a box of snacks to review, and since I love trying new things, I couldn’t say no!

Naturebox is like the Birchbox of healthy, natural food. For about $20 a month, you get five full size bags of snacks.

Nature box snacks

The box was filled with 5 snack bags. Granola, energy clusters, dried pears, pistachios, and masa crisps. I recruited my friend Alex to taste everything with me, and overall, we liked pretty much everything.

Naturebox

  • The Blueberry Flax granola was good, and reminded me of Cascadian Farms granola. It had a blueberry flavor, although I didn’t see any dried blueberries mixed in or anything. Overall it was ok, but nothing I couldn’t live without.
  • The Pistachio Power Clusters were interesting. They didn’t have a super strong pistachio flavor but I feel like they’d be a great pre-run snack.
  • The dried pears might have been my favorite. I’m not a huge dried fruit fan, but they reminded me of these apple chips, and (like all the Naturebox snacks) they didn’t have any added sugars or preservaitves. They also have a lot of fiber, which is great.
  • Pistachios are one of my favorite nuts, so I was excited to try these lemon pistachios. They were good, but I think I prefer plain pistachios better. The lemon flavor did give them an interesting kick.
  • Taste-wise, the Masa Crisps would probably be my favorite, but health-wise, they weren’t the most stellar. They were like a healthier version of a Frito, but they still had a decent amount of fat, and not a lot of protein or fiber. These would be a good alternative for preservative-packed corn chips, though! I also tried them on top of some vegetarian chili and they were delicious.

Overall, it was fun getting a shipment of new snacks to try. I think my biggest complaint is that you can’t order any of these snacks, so if you fall in love with something, you can’t get more. That said, if you just like a little variety in your snacking, it’s kind of a fun subscription service!

If you’re interested in Naturebox, click here to sign up, and use the code HEALTHY at checkout to get 25% off your first box!

Did you try anything new this weekend?

Calorie Tracking- The Details

28 Comments

If you’ve ever tried to lose weight (or even just stay on track) you’ve probably considered food journaling. I’m actually a huge fan of it, because it can be really interesting to see the big picture of what you’re eating. You might not realize that you’re getting too much protein, or too little fiber, or too much peanut butter. (Ok, that last one might just be me.) It’s a great way to end mindless snacking, and be more intentional about what you’re eating.

So food journaling is great… but the problem is, you don’t always know how much you should be eating. Whatever your goals may be, it can be hard to tell if you’re eating too much or not enough. Some days you’re active, some days you’re not. Luckily, there are some pretty cool devices out there to track how many calories you burn.

I’ve had a Bodybugg since August 2010, so these are nothing new to me. However, the old devices were a little clunky, and downloading the data was time consuming. There are a lot of devices out there, but I really wanted to try out the BodyMedia Link arm band. Similar to to the Bodybugg, this calorie tracker uses special sensors to calculate how many calories you’re burning. The best part is, it can wirelessly sync to your phone, and report out your activity in real time.

bodyband

I’ve started wearing the armband daily, and I’ll post a full review after I have a chance to really get familiar with it. I can tell you, it’s already motivating me to move around during the day! I’ve found myself trying to find new ways to incorporate small bits of activity. So in the interest of finding ways to squeeze in exercise, here are some of the things I’ve been trying:

small changes big results

I’m excited to keep wearing the armband, and I’ll post a full review in a couple of weeks. Stay tuned!

Note: I received the BodyMedia band free of charge, in exchange for a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

What are some of the ways you add in a little activity throughout the day?

New Foods & Old Favorites

50 Comments

After what felt like the longest food rut ever, I finally have a few new foods to share with you. New cereal, new snacks, and a new spin on Friday’s recipe.

I had a new-to-me breakfast. It was actually too cold for me to make a smoothie. I end up shivering by the end of breakfast. Plus, I didn’t have much time before rushing out the door, I so I poured myself a bowl of Special K Protein Cereal.

IMG_9142

This stuff actually tastes pretty good and packs in 10g protein and 3g of fiber, for only 120 calories. I had two bowls while I sipped on some coffee to warm me up.

Lunch was the usual salad-from-the-cafeteria.

low carb high protein salad

I’m still not tired of this combination, so I’ve been eating it over and over. I keep telling myself I should start packing my lunch. I keep buying salads. Oh well.

When I got hungry in the afternoon, I grabbed these roasted chickpeas. Have you seen them? I found them at Kroger, so I’m thinking they’re probably in most major grocery stories now.

chickpeas

They’re delicious, packed protein and fiber, and have a great spicy flavor. I could munch on these all afternoon and be happy.

For dinner, I whipped up another 2-ingredient pizza crust, and this time topped it with onions, peppers, mozzarella, and an egg.

pizza

The egg thing was a bit of an experiment. I basically followed the regular recipe, but I also added some oregano, basil, red pepper flakes, and garlic.  Then in the last few minutes, added an egg, and set it in the broiler. I’ve been trying to eat more eggs recently, so this was a super delicious way to get in some extra protein. This pizza crust is seriously so incredibly easy. I think I’ll be making this more and more…

Have you tried anything new foods this week?

Meeting at the Bar[re]

33 Comments

Saturday afternoon, I met up with some blogger friends for a Virginia Bloggers meet up at Local Barre, and got my butt kicked. I had no idea how challenging barre classes could be! I’ve done long training runs, I’ve tried cross fit… but wow. These classes are intense!

We were welcomed right at the front door!

7dec145c416e11e29ca422000a1fb149_7

Katherine and I had just gotten our butt kicked… but we were still smiling!

The class was an hour long and incorporated lot of repetitions of light weights. At first I didn’t think it was going to be too bad… but by the end, my legs were shaking with every move. I was definitely feeling the burn. I think this class would be the perfect way to really tone up!

You can read the full details on the Virginia Bloggers meet up here!

The rest of the weekend was filled with Christmas parties and festivities!

christmas parties

Doesn’t Conor look so cute? I also had to include that adorable picture of Christina’s veggie-tree. How cute is that?

Sunday, I wanted to make it to hot yoga, but I ended up not making it in time, so I put together a quick living room circuit workout, which was perfect for such a gloomy day. Sometimes, you just don’t want to venture out to the gym. So move your coffee table, and get your sweat on.

circuit workout

I did a little Jillian Michael’s yoga after that circuit, and it wasn’t easy, since I was so sore from Saturday’s barre class! This week I’m hoping to make it back to cross fit… but we shall see. I’m enjoying switching up my workouts!

Have you tried any new workouts lately?