healthy snack: hummus

a healthy, cheap snack i love to pack.  carrots and hummus dip.

i buy both in bulk to save money and to stretch our snacks.  Sonny eats carrots as much as i do and we were running out of the smaller 1lb 1.50 packs way too fast.  this big 3lb. bag is just around 3 dollars and some change at Sams.  the Sabra brand is awesome- creamy and flavorful.  they have a huge variety of hummus flavors too like roasted red pepper and  spinach & artichoke.

why buy this size for 3 bucks, when i can get the big tub for just 5?  head to your nearest warehouse club  and get two.

1 serving (2 tbl spoons) of Sabra hummus:

cals: 80

fat: 7g

carbs: 3g

protein:  2g

don’t you despise reading nutrition labels and seeing a serving size in ounces?  how much is 3 ounces of carrots!? i don’t own a food scale, but after some googling, 3 oz. is about 8-10 baby carrots @ 35 cals per serving.  raw veggies are super low in calories and super good for you- so grab a big handful to dip in your hummus for around 150 calories.

what else can you dip in hummus? after ordering some hummus from Niko Nikos  (they were featured on Triple D!!) for the first time a while back, they introduced me to a variety of veggies.  theirs comes with crispy green bell peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, and warm, fluffy pita bread.  celery and carrots sticks are affordable and easy to pack.



i ate out the ENTIRE weekend.  i rarely do that, but i still made some pretty good choices and didn’t go overboard.  after resting for a while saturday afternoon after the 10k (my little guy wouldn’t let me sleep but we still did  some lounging and took it easy), we headed over to olive garden with my cousin and bro.  Sonny had some work to finish up.  alas, the life of a business man.

OG peach tea!  the frozen peach slices are a nice touch.

countless rounds of their caesar salad.

had to get my chicken and gnocchi fix…can’t get enough of this soup. unlimited refills. only had 2 bowls there, but i ordered another round and took it to go.  this soup actually has the most cals out of them all, and the stats are still reasonable and low @ 250 per bowl.   i googled the copy cat recipe and i def. plan to make this at home!

 i’m SO feeling the mini desserts- fun to eat and look at.  and hello, portion controll!!! a lot of restaurants are doing them these days and i appreciate it as does my waistline.  we got a trio- two chocolate mousse and one lemon.

i really wanted a slice of lemon cream cake!! but this did the trick. 230 cals vs. 610 cals and 35 grams of fat.

limoncello mousse with a vanilla cookie crust.

such a perfect, satisfying size.

started sunday morning off with and early church service as usual.  i had my bowl of oatmeal before we left this time because i had to teach a weights class immediately afterwards.  i always eat a little something before hitting the gym and rarely go on an empty stomach…especially to lift weights.  i just can’t get enough of taking or teaching classes- if your gym offers them, TRY THEM. the class environment provides camaraderie, support, accountability, and hopefully some music you like!  i tend to push myself more when taking a class which makes for a tougher workout.

after class i went to join Sonny in the cafe.  what was he doing? what else?!

he needed a few more minutes to finish, so i grabbed a snack and fed the little one before his hunger attitude kicked in.  yeah i know who he got that from.  there were 3 boiled eggs in there… i emptied out the yolks and added ketchup. it tasted better than it looked.  added a stick of string cheese for a small protein filled snack. i also had a hot tea. they had several natural sweeteners to choose from. that totally motivated me to do a future post on the best sweetener to use..there are just SO many these days.  i went with this one though:

 ok enough of that, on to explore city centre. again.

that lululemon is just too close for comfort.

 did some shopping, walking, and playing before lunch.

so serene.


hey hubs!!!! *waving*

on to lunch- almost did Ruggles Green, but decided on Lubys, SMH.

mmmm…meat.  i normally go with their grilled tilapia, but im trying to break my habit of getting the same thing.

‘what can i get for you? ‘ *blank stare*

i ended up with a green salad, grilled basil chicken breast, cabbage, yams, and only the best mac n cheese ever.  they were a little skimpy with my mac n cheese portion size this time! hmph. but it’s all good…they definitely did me a favor.

good-bye february, helloooooooo march.  new month, new race! the Bayou City Classic 10K is in 12 days.  SIGN UP AND COME RUN!!!! (and then eat cause HEB sponsors this race too, hahaha)


rodeo run – the10k experience

bib is ON- it’s time.

it was 80 deg wed. and thurs, then we wake up friday to the low 60’s outta nowhere.  this morning was even colder, naturally! about 53 deg or so.  it really was perfect running weather so i’ll stop complaining.

that should be you!!!  it was a great turn out again this year. over 15,000 participants helped raise 400k+ for Texas high school students via the Rodeo.

 wrappin that thang up!! hubby got a shot of me juuuust before i crossed under the finish line.  the crowds and all the cheering and yelling never fails to help me blast through that final mile.  (spot me yet??)

gun time –  57:50, chip time – 55:07!!!!  i really just wanted to finish under an hour, though.

@ the post-race party. yet another reason i love HEB- they sponsor most of the races i participate in lol and ALWAYS have the best post-race snacks.  they were giving out fudge ice cream bars but the line was RIDICULOUS:(  i was too hungry to wait.

‘hey look, a bull.’ the line to take a pic with this guy was about as ridiculous as the ice cream line.  after making our rounds at the different vendor booths and running into countless friends  (it was seriously a mini reunion at one point) we headed to brunch.

not even gonna attempt to blame this on trying to keep the tradition going- truth is i am such a creature of habit!!! i could think of no other place for breakfast than LePeep..i just couldn’t. and YES, i got the same thing i ordered last time *eye roll*

hot chocolate

egg white scramble with smoked turkey and veggies.  i believe this is called ‘the health nut’ on the menu.  i subbed out the fresh fruit for potatoes cause i had a banana at the post race party. and i love potatoes.  drowned in ketchup.

one wheat pancake.

sonny’s plate. his stack of pancakes aren’t pictured but are hiding to the right.

 CONGRATS to all my friends who ran 5 and 10k’s for the very first time today!! way to set your goal and ACHIEVE IT!!!! EXTREMELY PROUD of yall for taking that giant step and simply signing up.  this is only the beginning;)   

 i’m subbing a weights class at the gym for another instructor tomorrow morning so my muscles really need to recuperate for the rest of the day. headed home for an evening of napping and lounging.  have a fantastic saturday!


before i go to bed

clearly i have a 10k to run in 11 hours!!! i met up with a friend of mine at Cafe Adobe for an early dinner after work tonight.  mexican food is one of my weaknesses, but i did a pretty darn good job of keeping my cool. i don’t want no tummy trouble (nor do the runners behind me) tomorrow.   the chip basket did NOT phase me tonight like it usually does! i’m so proud.  didn’t eat any.  not a one.  normally i’d order a quesadilla or something cheesy, but i kept it light and went with a cup of tortilla soup and a dinner salad.

pretty good.  nice sized chicken chunks, fresh avocado, tomato, and tortilla strips made the soup hearty and filling. the salad was fresh and crisp.  i also had some tangy avocado ranch dressing on the side.   my friend’s plate looked and smelled scrumptious.

it was sizzling beef something..i can’t remember. looks like fajitas with peppers and onions and a side of cilantro rice. the portion sizes were just right and  that creamy green stuff was delicious! tasted like avocado mousse.

 i’m up reading my newest mag and snacking on sweet & salty check mix….

i’m gonna pick out a celebratory dessert to make for after tomorrow’s run, ha.  ipod is charging and i’m hitting the sack, NOW. g’nite!



q: i am going to give breastfeeding my best shot- what pump do you use or suggest as i will be going back to work soon?

a: i can only vouch for the one i own and i LOVE it- it’s Medela brand, of course!  i’m  super satisfied with my purchase, and that lifetime warranty helps me sleep better at night.

Medela Pump in Style - Backpack Model

 i was using an older Meleda model pump (family hand-me-down) that broke on me after about 4 months or so, bummer.  i hadn’t done any research on pumps and i needed one ASAP, so i went and got a rental from Walgreens for 60 bucks in the meantime.  i took a month and scaled through online product reviews  and got some advice from my mommy friends.  my top priorities were dual pump, durable, fast, and light.  after lugging that giant rental pump around, i soooo appreciate the discreet size and style of the model i chose.  consider your own situation and preferences before buying:

  how often will you need to pump?

are you a stay-at-home mom, or working mom? full or part-time?

price range?





  i planned to b-feed for over a year, i’m half in the office and half out, and my little guy will have plenty of siblings;)  this was the one.

the motor/suction thing is in the bottom compartment. just connect the tubes to the bottles, plug it up (if you don’t have batteries of course) and pump.

in the top compartment, there’s room for the pumping bottles as well as a little cooler (ice pack included) to store the milk until you get it to the freezer or fridge. convenient. yes.  there is a tote bag style available too, but i chose the backpack cause it keeps my arms free.

so, what can this puppy do?  well, anything over 15oz (in an 8 hr period) is a great day in the dairy dept. for me.

i pump 2-3 times (11am, 2pm, 5pm) throughout my work day. that dual pump gets me in and out after about 10 minutes each time. amazing.


pack it up

after a big grocery shopping trip, the fun really begins.  i pack lunch for Sonny and i at least 4 times a week.  to maintain a healthy diet overall, preparing your own meals will always be the way to go.  it’s cheaper, you eat cleaner, and it’s superior for weight loss and maintenance vs. eating out.  you are in complete control. i prepare the lunches the night before so we can grab them and go in the mornings.

chex mix, banana, black beans & cheese, carrots & hummus, blackberries, grilled chicken salad

get your lunches together right after dinner if there is any left.  excuse our messy fridge:)

strawberries & blueberries, babybel cheese, fat-free plain yogurt, tuna salad, green salad

it’s still there, i know.

i shoot for a satisfying 400-600 calories for lunch.  too little calories and i’m searching for more food within the hour.  too many calories and i’m napping at my desk afterwards.  an ideal, balanced lunch should provide a mixture of vitamins, minerals, fat, carbs, and lean protein.

i normally stick to 1 serving of each:

  • 1 lean protein
  • 1 healthy fat
  • 1 low starch veggie
  • 1 starch (can be another veggie or a whole grain bread product)
  • 1-2 snacks (one mid-morning and one post lunch)
  • something sweet and small…yep, everyday.

 gotta have snacks. always. my favs:

mixed nuts (almonds, pistachios), fresh fruit, veggies w/ hummus dip, plain greek yogurt (0%, 2%), cottage cheese, babybel cheese wedges, wheat thins, special K crackers, fiber one bars, fresh popcorn, turkey jerky. need more? check her out- ideas GALORE.

what i packed for Sonny today:

  • lean protein – baked tilapia
  • veggies/low starches – kidney beans & corn/cilantro/tomato salad
  • starch – yellow rice (could really do without)
  • snacks- 1 tangelo & 1 banana
  • pre-workout snack – handful of almonds
  • dessert – 3 oreos (hey, he works hard)

 sometimes i run outta food and have even gone to take a peek inside that horrible, horrible thing- the vending machine.  and if you’re hungry enough and off your game, you might let something like this entice you:

 i did a double take that day!  what tha? don’t do it.

as of late though, the vending machine has been getting a gradual makeover-  i walked past the one in my building just last week and was THRILLED to see these:

pistachios!! great choice.  right in btw the candy bars, haha. i’ve also seen fiber one bars too, nice.  choose wisely and read the label- you know the drill.  sometimes it’s all you have to work with though- understandable.  running outta food is one thing, but skipping lunch is unacceptable.  your blood sugar level plummets and you become irritable and sluggish.  ALWAYS make time for lunch!!


6 days to go

6 days to go until my 10k and how about i didn’t run AT ALL last week.  i am the worst when it comes to training for my races, goodness.  it rained all day friday and saturday, but sunday we woke up to the exact opposite.  i got suited up and did my 7 miles- so glad that’s over with.

i need to invest in one of those arm band thingies for my ipod.  i always feel like it’s going to drop but it hasn’t yet.  i got my hair permed thursday, so after two days off lol, it’s time to sweat.  i did the best i could and wrapped it before my run. i sweat in my head and there is really nothing i can do about that:(

leaving my head uncovered and pinning my hair down so my head can breathe has been working for me so far.

i wear the headband to help my headphones/ear plugs (whatever they are called ) stay put.  when i get sweaty, they tend to pop out and mess up my run flow.

however it does a number on my edges. sigh…i’ll find a solution to this someday.  what do you do with you hair when you exercise? advice please!

anyway here are some trainings:

5K – quick

5K – long term

10K – quick

10K – long term

you get a free jar of HEB’s holy pasole when you buy the tortilla soup.  so i had two jars waiting to be used.  we have company coming over a little later so i made another one of their featured recipes:

i did healthify this up as best i could- i used 93/7% lean ground turkey, only 1 package of corn bread, and 1 cup of sharp cheddar cheese.

there was plenty of corn bread to cover the top btw…didn’t miss it.  ok i did miss it.  man i love cornbread.

done after 20-25 min.

aaaaaaaaand we’re off to another 1st birthday party- they’ll be plenty of those coming up this year including our little guy’s big day!!