Tag Archives: chicken

Cinnamon Chicken and Squats Workout

19 Jan

Lately I’ve been pretty good about balancing workouts and physical therapy, in part from having a live in work out buddy for the next couple weeks. Only having “formal” PT once a week has helped a lot too since I can just incorporate some my therapy exercises into my workout on the other days.

A couple days ago we went through a relatively short but pretty good leg workout:


  • 1 min Plank
  • 30 sec side plank/side
  • 1 min Mountain Climbers

2 Sets:

  • 20 squats
  • 20 squats with ball throw

3 sets:

  • 10 TRX lunges/leg
  • 12 lunges/leg

2 sets of 12, 1 set of 20 with decreased weight:

  • leg press
  • hack squats
TRX lunge start

TRX lunge start

photo 2

TRX lunge


Last night I was looking for a quick way to cook up some chicken that had been in the fridge a few days and came across this recipe for Crock-pot Cinnamon Chicken from Gracious Pantry (she has so many great clean recipes). I didn’t have everything the recipe called for on hand so I made some substitutions and I also double her amount of spices. Everyone liked how it turned out but I still want to try it again with the original recipe.

Here’s what my version of the recipe ended up being:


  • 5 raw, skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1.5 tablespoon coconut oil melted
  • 1 C almond milk
  • 1 C diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 C water
  • 5 medium carrots, peeled and sliced thin



  1. Place the sliced carrots and tomatoes in the bottom of the slow cooker’s and top with coconut oil and almond milk.
  2. Place your raw chicken on top of that.
  3. Put everything else on top and turn on the pot.
  4. Cook on low for 6 hours, or until the chicken easily falls apart

We served it with quinoa but I’d like to try it with a brown rice too… I’ll keep you posted when I make it following the Gracious Pantry recipe.

Relaxing… what’s that?

19 Aug

This is the first weekend, possibly since we’ve moved back to the states, that I haven’t had anywhere to be and it’s been great! I got the house cleaned (new puppy likes to leave food trails around the living room) and even made some protein bars and chicken for the upcoming week. All that’s missing is hubby but he should get back from this trip sometime early this week!

My cardio lately has been taking Maia (the new puppy) out for lots of walks. She’s a Cane Corso (an Italian Mastiff) and is only 1 year old so is basically a 70 lb ball of energy. Which is great because it means I’m walking at least an hour total everyday and having to use some core etc. since we’re still training her to stop pulling on the leash when she gets excited. The down-side is with hubby gone, it’s been harder to get her all her exercise and get my gym time in but I’ve been getting in home workouts so I haven’t lost out too much. Plus she’s adorable πŸ˜‰

ImageToday I made Carrot Cake Protein Bars, based off Jamie Eason’s Recipe but with a few modifications.

You’ll need:

  • 8 oz Carrot baby-food
  • 4 oz almond milk
  • 4 egg whites
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 2 scoops Vanilla whey protein
  • 1 C “clean” flour (oat, almond, etc. I use a GF blend)
  • 3/4 C Stevia, Splenda, or Truvia
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Mix together flour, protein, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, cloves, baking soda, and salt
  3. Add in almond milk, baby food, egg whites and then Truvia (or substitute)
  4. Spray baking pan with canola oil spray and pour in batter
  5. Bake 25-30 min
  6. Enjoy!

Jamie Eason’s Image from Bodybuilding.com

Clean Eating Chinese Food and Chocolate Pudding

8 Jan

I hear Chinese food and dessert and instantly think of things I shouldn’t be eating. But last night I was craving some Chinese food so got searching on how to make a clean eating, gluten free, meal. It was delicious! Now, keep in mind, it does still involve soy sauce (i.e. salt) and rice so, not a meal for if you’re in a cutting phase. I’m having to guess on some of the measurements because I honestly eye-balled it but didn’t think splash and/or pinch would do well for a whole recipe πŸ˜‰

You’ll need:

  • Brown Rice
  • 1/4 GF Soy Sauce **Low Sodium (Kikkoman has started making a GF low sodium option, has have a number of other companies, but PLEASE always double check the bottles)
  • 1/4 C water
  • 2 tsp white vinegar
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar (or rice wine vinegar if you have it)
  • 1 tbsp diced chili peppers
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • ginger (or ginger powder if you don’t have fresh)
  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 chicken breasts
  1. Combine soy sauce, white vinegar, and water in medium bowl. Dice the garlic and approx. 2 tbsp ginger and stir both, along with the peppers, into sauce. Chop the chicken and marinate in sauce.
  2. Prepare the rice according to the directions and set aside.
  3. Add a splash (sorry) of soy sauce and 2 tsp wine vinegar into a large skillet. Sautee onion, red pepper, and about 1 tbsp ginger (here you can also add in ginger powder if you prefer) until the onion begins to soften.
  4. Pour chicken and sauce into the skillet, add cayenne pepper, and continue to cook on Med-High until chicken is done
  5. Add in rice and cook approx. 3-5 more min while stirring to coat rice

I tasted as I went to add in more ginger and spices so, I apologize if the measurements aren’t exact. But it made plenty for hubby and I each to have a large dinner and about 1-2 portions left over.

chinese chicken

Then for dessert hubby had found a avocado chocolate pudding recipe that (surprisingly) tasted just like chocolate pudding! I Googled it today and apparently I’m behind the curve because there were a ton of recipes but here’s what we used to make 2 servings:

  • 1/2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 avocado
  • 1/4 C milk
  • 1/4 C sugar (the recipe actually called for Agave and you could easily substitute Truvia)
  • 1/4 C cocoa powder

Blend the avo, sweetener, oil, and milk until smooth. Add in the cocoa and blend until fully mixed. Garnish with crushed walnuts. Because avocado is high in fat and it does have sweetener it’s still an occasional treat but just a healthier option πŸ™‚Β **When I looked for it there are a ton of ways to make this including without milk so if you have other dietary restrictions I’d still suggest trying it but do a quick search for a different recipe

Off to the gym for leg day!

Struggles with motivation

26 Nov

It has been way harder than I thought it was going to be to get back into a routine! There’s always something to do… moving more things to the house, groceries, getting the right paperwork, job searching, cooking for Thanksgiving… lots and LOTS of excuses. To be fair, hubby and I are really active people. We’ve been taking the dogs on 20 minute walks at least twice a day so, that plus cleaning and moving etc. has def. kept me active but it’s just not the same. We move into the new house this week (like, tomorrow night I think) so that should help a lot once we’re settled and not living out of suit cases.

We have been cooking and eating pretty well… minus the left over pumpkin pie.Yesterday hubby had the idea to make “chips” with left over yams (well we thought they were sweet potatoes but, still good) so he just put a bit of olive oil in a skillet, sliced the yams really thin and cooked them with some pepper and garlic. It was really tasty and very quick! We had a lot of left over veggies from Thanksgiving so the theme for the week has been seasoning chicken or pork to go with said veggies… it worked really well. I am a little nervous about the new house because it has a Japanese oven which can fit about 2 fish or 2 chicken breasts. We are shipping over a George Foreman and we can use the skillet but it’ll be an adjustment for baking or roasting anything…


Today I did get a good leg workout in:

5 min warm-up

20 sumo squats with weight

20 squats

15 split lunges/leg

20 weighted crunches

20 reverse crunches

*3 sets

20 hip bridges

20 hip extensions

20 fire hydrants

*2 sets

Whole thing took about 35/40 min πŸ™‚

Today’s Monday here; we’ve finished the pie, I have some emails from photographers out here, and I’m tired of skipping workouts so it’s absolutely past time to really get back at it.

Bruschetta… as promised

30 Sep

So, it becomes instantly less healthy if you make it with the baguette as they have it but the recipe is here:


My sister said she just grilled 3 lb of chicken, chopped it up, and added it in.

Slow Progress

30 Sep

Well, I may have overdone it a little bit… I had that great workout (Wednesday) and then the next day went and shadowed in an ER for 8 hours. So by the time I made it through physical therapy Friday morning my foot was not happy, like sharp stabbing pain not happy, so… had to take a couple days off.

However up until that point, I got to try lunges at physical therapy– as long as it was just split lunges and the injured foot was in front it was tolerable. I haven’t been able to try it with the foot back or stepping lunges but, baby steps. And I have been walking more and more without the boot so my legs are starting to feel semi-normal again. I’m just trying to at least stretch out everyday. Physical therapy in the morning tomorrow and then hopefully a good tricep and abs workout after that πŸ™‚

I had my second and final bridal shower this weekend which was a lot of fun. One of my best friends surprised me by coming, we played silly girly games, and had great food (including pumpkin cupcakes… oops). I’m working on getting the recipe so when I do I’ll add it in (check back if interested) but, my sister made a yummy chicken bruschetta salad for lunch:

A Real Workout (even with a boot!)

25 Sep

PT went well this morning. It was mainly checking my baseline and giving me at home exercises until Friday when I go back BUT I get to start driving (short distances) as long as I bring the boot for when I’m walking and am weaning myself out of the boot with a goal of being basically out of it in a week.

Which means… I got to go to the gym today!!! And do the real bike! Is it weird that I’m super excited about that? To be fair, it’s also the first time I got to drive in a month so the sense of freedom was nice too πŸ˜‰ Talked to the trainer…. he pretty much had the same ideas I did for leg exercises I could do until I’m out of the boot but I did add in dead-lifts with my arms today.

12 dead-lifts to bicep curl

12 cable reverse flys/arm

12 cable flys/arm

12 overhead tricep extensions

*3 sets

12 lat pull downs

12 cable rows (I felt weak on these… what used to be an easy weight was a struggle on the last set)

20 incline sit-ups with weight

*3 sets

20 MIN on the bike (okay so it hurt a little but… ice made it better) and then stretched out. It’s amazing how tight my leg muscles have gotten from not using them and sitting around so much, I’m hoping I can get them to loosen up quickly now that I get to be a bit more active.

Last night I made a grilled buffalo chicken that turned out really well and was super easy.

1/4 C Plain Yogurt

3/4 C Hot Sauce

1 tsp Honey

Dash of Garlic Powder

2 tsp Worcestershire sauce **make sure to read all the ingredients if you’re gluten free or make it yourself if you’re really adventurous

Marinade the chicken for 30 min or longer and then grill. I “served it” with celery

Arm workout and Chicken Recipes

21 Sep

It’s been an emotional few days of ups and downs and not being able to run is killing me… but, I had coffee with a friend this morning (Pumpkin Chai, amazing) and then spent some time trying to process through everything. I made lunch (which was pretty good!) and got a semi-decent workout today.

12 bicep curls

12 overhead tricep extensions

15 lateral shoulder raises with resistance band

20 resistance band pull downs

*3 sets

20 crunches with weight: russian twists, reverse crunches (crunches 1st set, twists 2nd…)

15 skull crushers

15 push-ups with resistance band

*3 sets

Foot PT exercises (although, I’m getting impatient so I called my Dr. and set up real PT for next week… at least make sure I’m doing everything I can)


Here’s the lunch recipe… I forgot a picture:

Cajun Chicken Sausage (I use Bilinski’s)

Tomatoes (I used 2 medium ones, you could also buy a can of diced tomatoes no salt added)

2 stalks celery

canola oil spray

1 tbsp garlic

1/2C water

Dice celery and add that and garlic in pan over medium heat (spray pan before or spray celery with canola oil), after 5-10 min add in diced tomatoes and water (if you’re using canned, probably don’t need extra water). Simmer and add in chicken for 5 min (if sausage isn’t pre-cooked, add in with celery)

Tonight I’m going to make balsamic chicken and broccoli from:



Obviously not my picture. I’ll post one tomorrow with any changes I make!

Yogurt Marinated Chicken

6 Sep

Today was a good day. I didn’t work out since I did yesterday and with the injury I’m doing every other to let my arms rest as much as possible in between using the crutches. But, one of my friends came over and helped me just about finish my table numbers for the wedding and then I went to a book signing so I got to get out of the house for a bit. (Check out the book if you’re looking for some fun reading, I’m really excited about it: http://www.capitolhellbook.com/ ) Now I’m icing my foot and being good but it was really nice to see some people and feel productive.

Also, my dad was able to help me grill chicken for lunch so I made a yogurt chicken recipe. The original recipe is from Dr. Oz (http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/yogurt-marinated-chicken-breasts-quinoa-tabouli) but I played with it a lot.

3 skinless chicken breasts

1 tbsp honey

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/2 tsp cumin (I put closer to 1 tsp in and it was too much)

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

lime juice (approx. 1 lime)

2 tbsp olive oil (could prob. get by with less)

Combine all marinade ingredients together and coat the chicken. We used a fork to stab the chicken so the marinade would soak in a bit and then grilled the chicken. As you grill it, add more marinade for the last 2-3 min.

**we did not marinade it for hours and it tasted great and was really moist. The yogurt does stick to the grill a bit so just let it burn off and it clears pretty easily with a grill brush.

I forgot to take a picture before cutting in but here’s what was left:


Chicken Parmesan

26 Jun

Last night I made a healthy Chicken Parmesan that I found on pinterest. It turned out really well!

Preheat oven to 375


1 C Greek yogurt (I used a 6 oz Chobani)

1/2 C grated Parmesan

1 tsp Garlic Powder

Salt and Pepper to taste (I used maybe a 1/2 tsp of each)

Coat the chicken in the yogurt mix and bake for approx 45 min. That’s it! The cooking takes some time but it’s easy. I just worked on wedding details etc while it cooked and had dinner a little bit later.

Today was just a cardio day so I did 30 min on an elliptical “interval” program and then stretched really well. The next couple weeks are very busy so finding time to work out is going to be harder but as always, it’s all about what you make a priority!