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Confessions of a Cake Lady: Eat Your Heart Out

After a holiday devoted to chocolate and wine, I'll tell you what I eat before and after workouts to balance nutrition, build muscle and still try to manage a calorie deficit for weight management.

Confession: I delivered about 100,000 calories of cake from my kitchen for Valentine's Day gifts last week. That was 19, 6" round chocolate cakes filled with raspberries, frosted with a delicious buttercream, covered in chocolate ganache, and topped with 3-4 chocolate ganache covered strawberries. Each small cake packed in just over 5,000 calories, if my calculations are correct.

Personally, after making all those cakes I couldn't bare to make another one for our family to enjoy, instead, I was surprised by my husband with a box of Woodhouse Chocolates, handmade amazingness from Saint Helena. If you have never been, definitely worth the drive and the price tag.

Ok, this is a healthy blog, not a temptation blog. I haven't written in awhile because I have been busy using all of my free minutes working out, gardening, cleaning (kind of), and working on school work.

So raise your hands if you binged over the long love day weekend! Well it's Thursday, one week post Valentine's Day; pat yourself on the back if you made an attempt to work the calories off. So far this week I've run 6 miles of hills, rode 18 miles in a spin class, took an hour of Pilates and an hour of yoga. I am sore and happy.

Who do you workout with?

I would really like to emphasize the great impact having a workout partner has. I am rather new to treadmill running; until recently, I typically pounded the pavement in town or out in the country for most of my miles. However, I've realized that I've been severely slacking on my cross training and needed to get back into a gym for a better full body workout.

I am typically a bit of a gym loner. You will find me with my headphones on, in the farthest corner treadmill, completely zoned out in most cases. I saw a funny pinterest post the other day that said, "Whoever says a minute is not very long, has clearly never run on a treadmill before," and couldn't agree more. I had the pleasure of running with a friend today and 3.25 miles of hills literally flew by in 37 minutes. Just as a watched pot never boils, it can take an eternity to reach just one mile with the absence of a good friendly distraction.

Surround yourself with people who have like goals and you will find things in common to chat about. Chances are, there is someone else at the gym who needs a buddy too, plus having someone to meet up with will help hold you accountable for your workout time; after all, you can't be the one to flake because you're feeling sluggish when someone else is waiting for you.

What I eat before and after exercise

I've had a few people ask me what to eat before and after workouts and supplements. I only know what works for me, so take it with a grain of salt.

Personally, I do not take any supplements aside from daily multi-vitamins with calcium. I try not to complicate my routine, and want to really focus on a healthy life-long habits. I don't feel like adding supplements would be something I would sustain indefinitely.

As for eating, it depends on how soon, and how hard I will be working out. I do all of my exercise while the kids are in school during the morning because that is when I'm free, so my meals are based on that.

If I'm going for a moderate paced run (3-6 miles) I typically have a fruit carb and protein before and after: a banana dipped in peanut butter about a half hour before, and maybe a cheese stick, berries and handful of almonds or cashews after. You don't need many calories to make up glycogen stores for less than an hours worth of work, the point is to keep your body from eating your muscle as fuel.

If I am going to run more than 6 miles, I eat the same as above, but make sure to stow a package of sports jelly beans with me and eat two-three every 15 minutes (or about every 3 songs), they have been fantastic to stave off hitting a wall.

For weight and toning days I will pack in more carbs and protein before and after. Eggs and toast, veggie omelets, protein shakes with fruit, Greek yogurt and granola, tuna lettuce wraps, and lemon Luna bars are some of my favorites.

Sushi is my absolute favorite after a hard work out; just keep in mind, my idea of sushi is sashimi, not rice covered rolls smothered in sauces. I like to have a big plate of sake (salmon), maguro (red tuna) and hamachi (yellowtail tuna) covered in green onions and shredded radish with a side of unsalted edamame soy beans; each ounce of fish packs in 6-7g protein, along with omega-3s and great anti-inflammatory properties, and, it's delicious. Dixon is lucky to have a fantastic sushi restaraunt in the middle of downtown, don't miss out on Hana Sushi!

Most of all I really listen to my body. I have cravings all the time: for bananas, oranges, eggs, cabbage, broccoli, chocolate, red meat, coffee, cheese, bagels and more, and I assume it's because there is a deficit of something they provide. I take note of the days I am ravenous after a workout, and the days that I'm not hungry at all and try to observe and learn from my own patterns.

So tonight, I will be having a huge pile of asparagus because it's been on my mind all day!

Hope that helps you.

5K Fundraiser for Local Mom with Cancer

Don't miss a fantastic opportunity to run a 5k in Vacaville in honor of my friend Stefanie Pace this Sunday, beginning at 10am on Parker Street, Downtown Vacaville. (Click here for more information) Whether its your first 3.1 or your a veteran runner, you can walk, jog or sprint, bring your strollers or just your headphones to this fun family event.

“Make the most of yourself, for that is all there is of you.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Kelli Cherry February 21, 2013 at 04:56 PM
You are too funny! I made some vegan cupcakes for some friends of mine and was SO disgusted at the frosting. Literally JUST margarine and powdered sugar. Every time I took a bite I just saw myself eating a scoop out of the margarine tub. Best way to cure a sweet tooth, in my opinion, is to MAKE what you want to eat!! Spin class is my absolute FAVORITE way to shed the pounds. What gym do you go to? I've only tried the classes at Core Fitness, but 5:45am and 6am are pretty early now that I am no longer striving for my wedding body (not that I want to become obese or anything). I'm also a gym loner, sometimes I feel like I get too distracted, but I agree it is good for accountability... unless the other person also wants to crap out :-p

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