Oh hey, friends! Welcome to today’s edition of favorites on the blog. I hope you’ve been having a great week. We’ve had a lot of rain over here in the Bay Area, and that has put a bit of a damper on our daily walks, but there’s still been some good stuff going on. Let’s get to it!
Simple-ingredient snacking on Larabars
You know my love for Larabars, because I’ve shown many-a-picture of these. However, I want to reiterate that the reason I love Larabars is because they are extremely accessible and also clean snacks, which you can find almost anywhere — they aren’t some obscure health food item you can only order from an organic overseas farmer’s market online or whatever — you know what I mean.
They have a lot of fruit and real-food ingredients. And while they don’t have a ton of protein, you know what you’re getting when you pick up a Larabar. You don’t always know what you’re getting with other bars, so read the labels, folks.
I buy boxes of Larabars from Target, where I find they are the cheapest, and Dave and I both enjoy them. However, I recently got a shipment of some harder-to-find flavors (shown above) from my friends at Larabar (I buy WAY more than they send to me, just to be clear), and I’m LOVING all these flavor combos. Rumor has it that there is a peanut butter and jelly Larabar and a hazelnut one. I MUST get my hands on these.
I’ve mentioned this before, but in order to up the fat/protein of one of these bars, you can slab on a tablespoon or less of a clean nut butter to bolster the staying power of the snack. Yum! My overall favorite seems to be cashew cookie, but carrot cake is up there now.
A happy and noisy baby-at-the-barre class
I can’t NOT mention bring-your-baby-to-the-barre class at Open Barre Fitness in Walnut Creek again this week, because I just look forward to it so much. So quick Brady story: He has learned to “screech” with his voice, if that makes any sense — and BOY it’s loud. And it’s not a sad sound, it’s a happy sound.
Well he was SO darn loud screeching with happiness while watching me during barre that one of the other mothers came up to me after the workout was done and said .. “wow, he’s really found his voice, hasn’t he?” Ummmm, yes. Sorry! hahahah! Oh well, he did fine other than that!
I’ve found creative ways to touch him and wiggle him while working out, just to make sure he is entertained — like shaking his hand while I’m in plank and adding him to my hips during bridges so he can bounce. Tough stuff!
By the way, for my local friends, Open Barre Fitness is adding two more baby classes, so the schedule is now Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 2 p.m. for this session. First class is free! And they are SO kind to let me keep coming! 🙂
The return of the sweet potato lunch
Favorite lunch of the week! Gigantic organic baked white sweet potatoes were back in my life this week for lunches, as well as avocado, Vital Farms eggs and a new kimchi from Trader Joe’s. Okay, sweet potatoes never left my life, but I hadn’t been having them every day for lunch like I used to, so I had to call it a return.
More about the kimchi (the orange stuff), because I always get questions. It looks like this …
It’s pretty spicy, and although this Trader Joe’s version is quite a bit cheaper than the Farmhouse Culture kimchi I have been buying, I don’t like it as much. So this kimchi is not an official favorite, but if you’re into hot and spicy, you may like it. Nonetheless, kimchi is a fermented food, which is REALLY good for your stomach/digestive health, much like sauerkraut or yogurt. But only eat it if you like it, not just because it’s good for you.
Home-made matcha tea collagen latte
Matcha tea lattes are my jam, and I’ve been getting them at select coffee shops for more than five years — WAY before they became popular, I swear. Well, I had a few failed attempts at making them at home with crappy matcha powder in years past and so basically gave up making my own — until just recently.
I’ve finally figured it out and found the right product to do so. And an added benefit, my home-made matcha lattes have collagen in them too, featuring the high-quality matcha powder from my favorite collagen provider, Vital Proteins, of course. (<–Affiliate links!)
I’ve had a warm matcha collagen latte at home this week on the rainy days, and it’s been splendid. I mean, I’m not going to give up my weekend coffee shop visits, but I’m sure happy to have these lattes at home when I need them during the week.
Here’s how I do it, and no, I’m not fancy enough to own a frother, so I do it without, just using a regular metal whisk …
(Yes, I’m still rocking these red slippers, all day and night at home!)
- Bring water to boil in a tea kettle.
- Simmer some milk in a sauce pan with a packet or two of stevia added.
- Put a scoop of matcha in a mug.
- Pour the boiling water over the matcha, while whisking it together.
- Pour the milk and stevia into the mug, while whisking it together.
So easy and so delicious! Give it a try — just in time for St. Patrick’s Day too! And thanks to my friends at Vital Proteins for always keeping me stocked.
Best reads from the web
Just a few things worth sharing from the week …
- Beauty: I’m a big perfume lover and was sad to learn that most popular perfumes actually include a lot of harmful chemicals like phthalates, which are known to cause headaches. While I won’t throw out my nearly full bottle of FlowerBomb (my personal fave, which I’ve been in love with and using forever — sooo good), I am thinking of purchasing a nontoxic scent next for more everyday wear, so I loved this article on nontoxic fragrances.
- Perseverance: Part of me was worried watching this little girl try to do a box jump, but the sheer look of celebration at the end made me realize this was awesome! And it also reminded me that I haven’t done a box jump since before I was pregnant.
- Connection: This is a good one about how connecting with people and having a community or support system actually helps you to be healthier. Enjoy your “me time,” but also find others to share meaningful interactions with as often as you need it.
Favorite A Lady Goes West archives
Because you often need a distraction at the end of the week, here are some more posts to peruse …
- Even trainers need trainers … “Why I like working with a personal trainer.”
- Because we’re all busy, and we all need groceries … “A busy gal’s shopping list to save time at Trader Joe’s.”
- Expecting a baby and still working out? Here’s your guide to Les Mills BODYPUMP, although these tips can be used for any workout … “How to modify a BODYPUMP class when you’re pregnant.”
- THIS POST! I’m SO glad I wrote this post from earlier in the week about body image. I’ve been blown away by the positive response. Thank YOU for reading it and receiving it … “How to handle a changing body image.”
Have a fabulous weekend, my lovelies! I’ll be teaching barre, meeting with someone about our taxes and having a little pizza party with friends. Three cheers for the weekend!Currently loving in fitness and food on A Lady Goes West ... Click To Tweet
Questions of the day
What’s one good thing that happened to you this week? Or did YOU make it happen?
What’s your current favorite TV show? We’re finally starting to watch “This Is Us” and so far so awesome!
What’s something you only like to buy and not make at home?