Chia – the lowdown

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If you add one healthy addition to your diet this week, let it be these nutrient-packed, energy fueled, tiny, little seeds. I recently started throwing them into my breakfast every morning and have become quite the fan. They keep you feeling full and have loads of benefits to them- plus you can eat them in their natural form so there’s zero prep work.

Who even knew a seed could be a superfood, but in fact these are it. They are packed with healthy Omega-3’s, protein, iron, fiber, antioxidants, calcium- the list goes on! Quite a lot for something you can easily toss on anything you eat and with a nutty flavor it’ll actually taste good!

Here are some of my favorite ways to incorporate the seeds into my diet with little to no work:

(using about 1 tbsp straight from the bag)
Mixed into oatmeal, yogurt, cereal, granola
Smoothies – once blended they will create a little crunch
Sprinkled on a Peanut Butter & Jelly sandwich
Tossed into a veggie stir fry or salad

And if you want to take them one step further try the below:

Chocolate chia seed pudding:
1 1/4 cups almond milk or coconut milk
3 to 4 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup chia seeds
Mix all together and let it sit in the fridge for a few hours. Super tasty and healthy!

There are tons of recipes out there using chia seeds, I haven’t tried cooking or baking with them just yet- but I hope to try it out soon so stay tuned…

arugula, watermelon & feta

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I’ve been seriously loving this salad. It’s perfect for a warm day, it even looks like summer with the bright watermelon chunks. It’s fresh, light, colorful, so tasty and easy to make. I’m hooked.

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Arugula, watermelon, feta, red onion and toasted pine nuts, all you need.

I make my dressing by whisking together fresh lemon juice, balsamic vinegar and a splash of honey. Drizzle on top of the salad and enjoy immediately.
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The peppery arugula and sweet watermelon topped with creamy feta makes a delicious combination. The pine nuts give that nutty flavor which is balanced by the sharpness of the red onion.

Flavor overload. and o so good!

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Workout Review: Barry’s Bootcamp

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{images via Barry’s Bootcamp}

I survived.

Not going to lie, I was sort of scared going into this class. When a friend suggested a class for her birthday, I said sure, (while also noting she’s a much better person than I would ever be on my birthday and you most certainly would find me eating cupcakes and pizza before a boot camp) but nonetheless 3 of us went to try it out.

Prior to agreeing to the class, I didn’t know much about Barry’s, except that it’s “hardcore” and that Kim Kardashian does it (which also gave me a boost of confidence that if she could, I definitely could). The day of, I decided to do some Google searching on what really was going to happen to me in class that night. Then I got scared.

I saw bits and pieces of “running on an incline at a speed of 9.5” (I’m lucky to break 7.0), “lifting weights 15 lbs and higher” (I’m comfortable at about a light 5 pounds), “push-ups for 2 minutes face to face with another person” (just plain awkward) and most importantly “an instructor screaming at you to get it done” (I don’t like to be bullied), after that I was like ut oh. I tried messaging my friend to suggest maybe a cocktail and dinner albeit the class? Wasn’t happening, we already paid and we were going.

Walking into the studio was a bit intimidating- dark, music blasting, colored lights shining on the equipment and a long row of treadmills staring me in the face. I went right for a treadmill wanting to knock off one of those sets right from the start, figuring I needed more strength for the running part verses the floor.

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The class is divided into four 15 minute sets- 2 treadmill, 2 floor with the group dividing between the two. The floor consists of steps and free weights that we used to target arms, chest and abs. The treadmill portion was focused on speed and incline, increasing and decreasing accordingly. Both were excellent workouts that got your heart pumping and there was enough change in the routine so you won’t get bored.

It was definitely hard, but not impossible and certainly not as scary as I anticipated. All in all I enjoyed class and definitely felt it was an efficient workout and use of an hour.

Will I go back? Yes! It was a great workout and the time passed so quickly going back and forth between cardio and strength.

And the best part- after completing a serious bootcamp you can hit up the Fuel Bar outside the class for delish protein smoothies to recharge. Try the Simply Peanut Butter!