wienervention – the cleanest hot dog i’ve ever eaten

another early gym date accomplished this morning and officially 1 month postpartum! i expect to get a lot done today. 
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i had my usual preworkout snack, some hot, magical coffee, and headed out for an hour of treadmill intervals. i alternated btw:

5 incline @ 4 mph – 5 minutes

15 incline @ 3 mph – 5 minutes 

walking IS boring but there are ways you can rev it up.  i always swing my arms vigorously, walk heel-to-toe with a wide stride, and i never hold the side rails either. that’s cheatiiiiing ;)

can i do a blog #throwbackthursday? i’m doin’ it anyway!

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while we were headed home from the hospital last month with our brand new baby boy, something beat us there- my Wienervention Kit from Applegate!!!

that nostalgic red and white pattern always reminds you of what? a summer picnic, yep.

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however, the Houston heat was too much and i just wanted to lay down somewhere and stuff my face in the AC.  i’d like to give a gigantic high-five and thank you to one of my favorite natural and organic brands, Applegate, for the goods. i knew the kit was on the way, but it slipped my mind after giving birth and all.  my mom and aunt were at our house tidying up and waiting to help out with our new family member, so unbeknownst to Sonny & i, they went ahead and cracked the kit open and prepared a welcome home lunch for us! perfect timing, right?

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i actually used to avoid hot dog wieners for this very reason…  i’ve always thought of them as the wack parts of meat that didn’t make the cut all blended up together with fat and other UFOs.  i would only have them every blue moon, like july 4th or memorial day at somebody’s BBQ. at home? not so much.  also, reading ‘mechanically separated turkey, chicken, or beef’ in the ingredients list is not very appetizing. thank God we have many healthier options to choose from these days; these Applegate wieners are in a league of their own! a wienerventioW was overdue.

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rest assured these top-notch dogs are:

  • all natural
  • contain no antibiotics
  • humanely raised beef fed vegetarian/grain diet
  • gluten-free
  • casein-free
  • contain no fillers
  • contain recognizable ingredients! every single one.
  • really, really tasty.

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nailed that presentation.

they also sent along condiments, cause you can’t build a stellar dog without them.

20140619_185515_1 for the buns, we had a choice of Rudi’s Organic Bakery Multigrain or White hot dog buns!  i loved them both and you can snag a coupon for a bag of your choice right on their website. 20140620_144055_1from the bun, to the condiments, to the wiener, this is THE cleanest hot dog i’ve ever eaten.

time to change the meat you eat and give Applegate a try.

in newborn news, CYMERA_20140717_114845

i think he’ll be tall.

more tummy time, aka, push up practice!

le

one piece of equipment at a time

my home workouts have FOREVER changed!!!!! i’ve been wanting to purchase a step bench for my home for a while now but i just knew i could find a better deal than the 89.00 and up they are in stores and online (Walmart, Academy, Sports Authority, Target).  i wanted the REAL thing.  the one i use in my classes every week and the one you find in a majority of fitness clubs. not the shorter, copycat versions.  just before biting the bullet and heading to Target to purchase it tuesday, i was gifted with one from a very special person. aaaggghhhh! so grateful.

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i brought that baby home and immediately got to work making vids!  slowly but surely i’m building up my home gym repertoire which does wonders for my motivation.  the more toys you have, the more you wanna play, right!?  Chiso jumped on before i did and started doing his thing.

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i can’t find the Figure 8 bands i use at Lifetime in stores but i did pick up these light, medium, & heavy resistance ones (3 to a pack) at Target to slip over my shoes and/or ankles.  you know the vids for those are on the way.

moves:

  1. squat jumps  – keep those knees behind your toes and weight in your heels for every single rep. drop your booty to the bench! keep an eye on your heart rate.
  2. crossover pushups (using 1 riser) –   try them on your toes!
  3. incline chest flyes – breaking the bench down and creating a makeshift incline bench is PERFECT for 2nd and 3rd trimester moms-to-be! we know that lying on our backs for an extended period of time after about 20ish weeks (varies per mom) or so is a no-no for blood circulation, so this is a great modification.
  4. bench step ups - get low and get your waddle on. alternate legs or do the same leg then switch it up. hey Chiso :lol:

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i saw HEB’s rendition of these guys while shopping and they looked tantalizing as heck in the package! i gave them a go at home and wow. just wow. 3 ingredients. add these to your Super Bowl eats or ANY party menu. find something to celebrate and just make them!

Cheesy Stuffed Maple Jalapeno Poppers (dairy-free)

the stuff:

  • 5 jalapenos, halved
  • 10 pieces of low sodium maple bacon (just cut 5 long slices in half for the perfect length to wrap around the pepper)
  • 1/2 cup Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese spread (you can also use any flavor Laughing Cow cheese wedges, yum)

do this:

  1. cut each pepper in half and discard the seeds and filling
  2. stuff each half with 2 tbsp Tofutti spread or LC cheese
  3. wrap bacon around stuffed pepper and secure with a toothpick if need be
  4. bake for 20-35 min (depending on size) in a 425 degree oven

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*per pepper: 52 cals, 4g fat, 1 carb, 2g protein*

Q: what is the best piece of at-home equipment you’ve invested in? 

Q: what would you love to add next?

i’d love a pullup-bar & an elliptical.

le

Banana Pecan Chocolate Chunk Muffins


how was your monday?

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the ‘monday blues’ do not exist!  Mondays only suck if you let them- accept what you can’t change and change what you can’t accept.

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 whether it’s your career, your relationships, or even something you want to change within yourself, start by making a CONSCIOUS effort to be positive with your actions, expressions, and words.  positivity breeds positivity. don’t dwell on the negative and what went wrong.  break the habit.  talk about your joys and count your blessings!  and if what went wrong is worth it, fix it, but keep building and focusing on the NEW.

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i finally started the online defensive driving course (gag) task i’ve been putting off since i got the ticket back in july.  i thought that horrible procrastination habit was supposed to fade out as you got older, i mean really.  during one of my countless mini breaks i went and made some of the best homemade muffins i’ve had….ever. look!

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Banana Pecan Chocolate Chunk Muffins (source)

the stuff:

  • 6 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup coconut crystals
  • 1 cup 2% greek yogurt
  • 3 small RIPE bananas
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chunks
  • 1/2 cup pecan pieces

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do this:

  1. preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. mix the wet ingredients with the wet, and the dry with the dry.
  3. combine all together in a large mixing bowl
  4. fold in chocolate chunks and pecans last
  5. spray muffin pan with no-stick cooking spray
  6. bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown

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macros for 1 regular muffin (makes 24):

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 macros for 1 mini muffin (makes 36):

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30 minutes of defensive driving down, 5.5 hours to go. welp, goodnight. :lol:

le

snacks on a plane

RISE AND GRIND fit foodies! mornin’. i was up early in sanctuary #2 gettin’ my sweat on in Barbell Strength class. fun, fun. wake up!!!

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get to know trial and error.  get comfortable with it.  accept that things will not always go the way you planned.  and when they don’t, sulking and dwelling on it should be the last thing on your agenda.  it shouldn’t even be on there to begin with.  to be disappointed is to be human.  cry. adapt. adjust. suck it up.  pick yourself up. then keep walking.  failure does not mean defeat.  it means that you now understand what works and what doesn’t, e.g. trial and error!  whether you receive a yes or a no in the pursuit of your dreams, they are both blessings.  you must believe that.  God has your best interest at heart at all times and will not lead you astray.  He promised!  He’s just adjusting your path to where He wants you to go.  remember… He’s always thinking of you, even when He is not on your mind.    i may not always know which way to go when a fork is thrown in my road or what to do next, but walking backwards is not an option.  face your fears and keep moving forward, friends.

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i hardly ever get to sit down and actually read my favorite mags anymore so i took full advantage on our plane ride to South Beach this past weekend. look out; Fall recipes are headed your way ;)  what else did i bring? you already know.

some fast food.

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a couple of red delicious apples, clementines, almonds, and my favorite gluten-free, all natural FITzee bar flavor, Apples ‘n Oats.

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perfect for traveling and on-the-go but also for feeding those hungry muscles after a great workout!  after exercise, your body requires an abundance of protein and carbohydrates to replenish your depleted muscles.

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  the bar’s carbohydrate:protein:fat ratio makes it an ideal, healthy option for a PWO (post workout) snack or meal replacement.  click here for nutritional stats and ingredients on all 3 flavors.

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depending on your airline, in-flight snacks and/or meals seem to be nonexistent these days, jeez.  no peanuts, pretzels, nothin’ .   you’d do better bringing your own anyway!

MORE non-refridgerated snack ideas for traveling:

  • trailmix / granola
  • beef or turkey jerky
  • packaged tuna
  •  wraps, tortillas, pita pockets (La Tortilla Factory, Prophet’s Ezekiel)
  • peanut butter (individual packets)

 off to pick up my business cards for the BE conference tonooooight!

le

Q: what are you afraid of?


spanana pancakes + sweaty saturday

still waitin’ on that pancake recipe? :lol:  i really dropped the ball- this was supposed to be up days ago.  but here it IS, right now, i won’t make you wait any longer!!!

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spanana pancakes

the stuff:

  • 1 whole egg (or 2 egg whites)
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/3 cup fresh or frozen, microwaved / cooked spinach, cooled
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (or more…be generous!)
  • half a banana
  • 1 packet stevia (optional)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

do this:

throw everything in the blender and turn it ON!  the banana makes the batter sweet enough for me, but if you need more, add the packet of stevia.  blend to your liking- if you’re making it for your kiddos though, definitely blend until super smooth.  we don’t want them to discover our little secret!

turn your non-stick pan on medium heat and cook them up like cakes.  when bubbles start to form and pop, flip them.  3-4 min on each side should be about right.

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for the entire stack: w/out the greek yo and using 1 whole egg

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remember this is pretty much a complete meal for your little one(s)! veggies (spinach), complex carbs (oatmeal), protein/fat (eggs) and plen-tay of fiber!

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have you tried this?

honey crisp apples are the bomb, but they are also pretty pricy per lb.  i buy red delicious apples a lot, and i make a dip for the slices using chocolate PB2 and 0% greek yogurt mixed together. sweet, protein-filled dip/treat.

i snacked on it while i made us this dinner last nite:

20130315_211745lean, grilled, apple-turkey burgers stuffed with mozzarella cheeeeeese! WHAT! we added ripe, mashed avocado, fat-free feta, juicy tomatoes, and coarse ground mustard, all on sara lee 45 cal whole wheat bread. mmm-mm-mmmmm.

i’m holdin’ out on ya again… recipe will be in tha e-book, but go make my apple-chicken patties until then..they are just as good;)

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i made some meatballs out of the rest of the batter and stuffed them with low-fat mozzarella also- you can toss these over veggies, whole wheat pasta, rice, quinoa,  salad…WHATEVER! avocado, fat-free feta, and low carb ketchup was what i was feelin’ along with my sweet potatoes and okra.

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how was your saturday!? mine was FAN-FLIPPIN’ TASTIC! can you tell?!  i subbed for another instructor at the gym and i always love the saturday morning crowd and a great, sweaty, saturday morning workout.  75 minutes of only the best class ever…Total Body Conditioning baby! even on spring break, people showed up and got their sweat on with me!  little man was there too, so we hit the Lifetime Cafe for some all natural, ‘pee-za’ on whole wheat crust, his fave.

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this spoke to the Techy in me:)

HAPPY SATURDAY!!!

le

these crisps were made for snacking


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once i hear or read about a product (usually food) multiple times, i must see what all the hype is about for myself!  this was one of those items- Mrs. Dash no-salt fiesta lime seasoning.  i knew it would be the bomb on some seafood, but….20130208_150009

go ahead and add fruit to that list.  where did i get that tip? the back of the bottle!  paired with strawberries, it makes for a sweet, citrusy snack with a kick of lime spiciness.  you’ve  gotta try it on mango and pineapple too!

i heart sweet potatoes. i can smash an entire package of any kind of crackers in one sitting (especially gold fish), and you already know how i feel about my beloved cheese.

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i wanted something different from my nightly roasted sweet potato!  i bought a wedge of fresh parmesan cheese from HEB just for this, and you can get some at any local grocery store.

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so when you put those 3 things together, you have one healthy, low-calorie sweet & savory snack cracker chip thing.

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baked, not fried….you already know.

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baked cheesy sweet potato crisps

the stuff:

2 large raw uncooked sweet potato, shredded

1/2 cup egg whites

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

1/4 cup chopped green onion

fresh cracked pepper

1 tbsp liquid aminos

1 tsp fresh rosemary (optional)

do this:

preheat your oven to 425, and spray a baking sheet with no-stick cooking spray.  shred/grate your sweet potatoes either by hand or by food processor and squeeze all the moisture out.  don’t skip that step! also, chop up your green onion.  add this to a mixing bowl and pour in your egg whites, grated parmesan cheese, aminos, and pepper and minced rosemary (any other fresh herb will do). mix! make tablespoon sized mounds all over your baking pan (make sure they aren’t touching) until there is no more left.  press down slightly but do not flatten and bake for 20-30 minutes or until the edges are browned, not black :lol:

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serving size = i made approx. 20, but it depends on your scoop size.

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adapted from here!  and yeah, i left them in for a little too long but i’m a gigantic fan of burnt cheese so it was ALL good.  had i had some greek yogurt at the time, i would have tried the smokey yogurt dip to go along with it.  i mashed up a ripe avocado and sprinkled some salt-free Mrs. Dash fiesta lime seasoning on top and that worked for me!
if you have the ingredients though, go for it: 

Smokey Yogurt Dip (via How Sweet It Is)

1 cup plain greek yogurt

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/4 teaspoon cumin

i seriously only check our mailbox for my mags, that’s IT.  
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was this issue not perfect timing!?

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i paid Christine, my posing coach, a visit earlier this week to show some love by purchasing one of these cute, sexy, ‘Pose4You’ racerback tops of hers!  i’m so proud to be one of her clients!

what is your favorite food and/or fitness mag? 

weekend + peanut butter oatmeal carob chip cookie balls

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i mean i just wanted to take a selfie of my new top from my sweet coworker, Monica!  apparently everybody needed to use the bathroom at the same time.20121222_080014doing his daily ritual.

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love it!  workout gear is one of my fave ever gifts to receive.   it’s Nike, very light weight, has a cool design, and most important, racerback.

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we hit the gym and i decided to take a Total Conditioning class instead of my normal weights and cardio routine.  taking classes and teaching them are completely different for me concerning the workout part!  i do 80%+of the workout with my class, and the rest is coaching, motivating, and walking around checking for great form.  before i began teaching, seeing the instructor struggling with me provided some of THE best motivation to keep me going! so i definitely try to provide that for my members. when i’m up there on that podium, it’s like i feel NO burn, seriously!  my adrenaline goes crazy the entire time. talk about an endorphin high :shock:

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where’s waldo?

 when i take a class, i feel the burn waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay sooner, LOL.  i feel every thing!  it’s now me vs me and  i go to war with that voice inside my head telling me the burn is too much and to STOP.  but i refuse!

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i did the class, then 30 min of fat burning cardio and got up outta there.

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but not before a progress selfie lol.  Chiso and i had a day of Christmas and grocery shopping to get to, and i neglected to pack our lunches.  i knew we’d pass by that death trap of a food court at the mall and the smell of fries just might win me over after that workout! so, we had lunch at the gym.

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and i’m glad we did! ok more like a snack.  i got a smoothie for the first time in MONTHS.  i’ve enjoyed eating my fruit instead of drinking it..that’s my only reason.  anyway i was super surprised to see that Lifetime now has almond milk substitutions!! what!? they are always one step ahead!

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i got an almond delight which did not hit all my macros for meal 2, but it held me over juuuuust enough until we got home.  don’t worry, i made up for it.

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i chose blueberry and banana for my fruits of choice; the best smoothie combo ever, i know!

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cold and creamy.

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Chiso loves the chocolate flavor of this milk too, lol! (me too)  20121222_113650

‘if it’s here, it’s healthy.’

100% clean menu.

on to the mall!

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i spotted this while we were out shopping and did the most obnoxious double take ever.  miracle slimming system.  no diet and exercise required. 10 minute method. 3.99. it’s called a WORKOUT for a reason, yall!  it requires an effort.  it’s still on the shelf because unfortunately someone will buy this thing.  only real, lasting results come from good nutrition and exercise. that’s it. that’s the secret.

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i spent longer grocery shopping than Christmas shopping lol. i  saw these in the bulk isle at HEB and gave them a taste…score.  they are low in sugar, grain sweetened, carob chips and they taste just like semi sweet chocolate chips!  grain sweetened chocolate covered raisins from Whole Foods have been my guilty pleasure for YEARS.  it was the only place i could find them for a while, but carob has definitely gotten more popular lately!  you’ll see these guys again shortly.

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TODAY was leg day and i had a grilled turkey and almond cheese sandwich on Ezekiel bread, a small red delicious apple, and some tomato & cucumber salad from Central Market before hitting the gym. 20121223_133805

tryin to shred these puppies!!

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had just finished doing my heavy squats here.  i went heavy and did 4 sets of 10 of the following: barbel squats, single leg seated presses, hack squats, alternating dumbbell lunges, deadlifts, leg extensions & curls.

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then i followed that up with about 10 min of abs.

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nice burn!

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i’ve been thinking about the kind of cookie i wanted to leave out for Santa, and i tried my hand at some no-bake peanut butter cookie balls that turned out darn good!

No Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Carob Chip Cookie Balls

the stuff:

  • 10 tbsp quick oats
  • 2 tbsp carob chips (can totally use any kind of chocolate chips)
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar (can sub honey)
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 4 tbsp chocolate PB2

do this:

MIX! form into 10 balls and pop them into the fridge until you’re ready to devour.  give them at least 30 min though.  if they are too sticky for you, add more oats in increments of 1 table-spoon.  they were just right for us though!  recipe makes 10 balls.

serving size = 1 cookie

carobcookieslow sugar, vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free (long as your oats are gluten-free) and YUM-MY.

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Chiso looooooooooooved them!

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him and his faces.

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more, more, more!  20121223_172327

ok we ate this entire batch, but we will make plenty more.

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Santa will wash them down with a big glass of almond milk!

what kinda cookies will you be leaving out for Santa this year?

le