Pump Up Your Playlist

We can almost all agree, the music we choose sets the tone for our workout. A recent study showed that participants who got to listen to music of their choice performed better in their workouts. Over the group who either listened to no music or the group who listened to music they didn’t like.

In essence we need our music or genre to drive our success in the gym on most days!

So below is a list of songs you may or may not have heard of. I have sorted them by genre to make it a little easier to choose what you might like. That way you don’t have to plug and play all of them to find out what kind of jam it is!

I hope you enjoy these songs and perhaps you will find two, three, or ten songs to add to your playlist! I have tried to pick songs you might not already be rocking out to.


Adelitas Way – Invincible

Anberlin – Self-Starter

Anberlin – Someone Anyone

Arctic Monkeys – R U Mine?

Beware Of Darkness – Howl

Greek Fire – Down in Mexico

The Raconteurs – Salute Your Solution

West Water Outlaws – Caught in the Headlights

Wolfmother – Woman

Wolfmother – Joker and the Theif

Hip Hop:

Eminem – The Monster

Fort Minor – Remember The Name

Kanye West – POWER

Lupe Fiasco – Around My Way [Freedom Ain’t Free]

Travis Barker ft. Pharrell and Lupe Fiasco – If You Want To

X-Ambassadors – Jungle  – (Personal favorite, 2014 World Cup Song)


Kaskade ft Neon Trees – Lessons in Love

Pendulum – Crush

Pretty Lights – I Know The Truth

Ratatat- Loud Pipes

Sleigh Bells – Comeback Kid

Swedish House Mafia – One

Best Song to Run to:

Woodkid – Run Boy Run (Instrumental)

Those are some of the tracks that I have been recently turning up to 11. Whatever song gets you going is the best one for the day. So hit the play button and turn it up.

What songs get you motivated? What genre drives your workouts?




Finish The Week Strong

It’s only Thursday?

Does this feel like you today?
Does this feel like you today?
You feel like you want to sleep until the weekend? Do you want to walk back and forth to the copier while staring at the floor both directions? Or will you just post to Facebook about how it’s only Thursday and this week sucks?

There are a lot of options here. How about one that hasn’t been mentioned.

Turn it around!!

The worst feeling in the world is not getting enough sleep and knowing you have a 10 hour day laid out in front of you. You are tired, cranky, and feel worse then this guy.

Don't be this guy.
Don’t be this guy.

So here is a list of surefire ways to turn your day around, and since I like things to be organized it’s an easy to follow list!

1. Smile. Even if it just to yourself at your desk, while you stare at the wall.

2. Say good morning to people. This goes a long way to losing those grumpy pants. Most people will smile in return thus getting us back to step one!

3. Listen to your favorite song song. Optional extra credit is to sing or dance along. It will get those feel good endorphins going and put you on the path to mood boosting.

C2C – Happy

4. Send a random and weird picture to one of your best friends.  The response will be priceless. Most of the time.


5.  Stand out in the sun for five minuets. This is a great one to pair with number three. SUNSHINE boosts levels of serotonin – the body’s natural happy hormone. That’s why we tend to feel happier and more energetic when the sun shines.

6. Say “Thank You” to someone who holds the door for you or does anything that was a pleasant surprise. Most likely a smile will follow and using manners is always wonderful.

7 “When you can’t change the direction of the wind, adjust your sails”

– H. Jackson Brown Jr.

I love this quote. It gives you the power to make your day better even if what put you in a crummy mood is out of your control.

8. Find something that smells good. Then smell it! Things like lemon, fresh fruit, just mowed grass, or basil.  Anything fresh and bright will do. It will wake up your brain and bring a smile to your face.

9. Eat some of the following foods. They have been shown to beat stress and a grumpy mood. Eggs, dark leafy greens like kale, pumpkin seeds, fish rich in omega 3 such as salmon, flaxseed, and dark chocolate.

10. Stuck at your desk or you can’t seem to do any of the above. Watch this Video (you’re going to need four minutes) or tune into your favorite funny video.

11. Workout! It will increase your blood flow and give you more energy to make it through these last few days of the week.

Whatever method you choose, whether it’s from the list or not OWN IT! Make it turn your day around. Have it empower you to smile and make other peoples’ days that much better. Instead of being the office grump be a day maker.

Use your powerful energy to make the most out of any situation. With just a few simple tricks you can turn that frown upside down. Sorry I had to put that in here somewhere.

Foil Grilled Greatness

Today we have a quick and easy recipe that will spice up any dish you choose to make along with it. It is easy and there can be as many subtractions or additions as you want. This makes a great supplement to any summer BBQ or mid week meal since it is so easy to make. This healthy side dish will make you want to experiment with foil packets every time you fire up the grill!

Main Ingredients:

4 Plums quartered

1 Large peach quartered

1 Small red onion (cut into half moons)

2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar

Dash of fresh pepper and salt

Handful of fresh thyme or basil (I used basil for the packet that is pictured)

All the ingredients mixed together before they enter the foil packet.
All the ingredients mixed together before they enter the foil packet.

After you have mixed all the ingredients, make a foil pouch. I had to use two big sheets to fit all the ingredients. The grill heat should be medium, if you hold your hand over the coals it should be able to be there for about 3 – 4 seconds before becoming too hot. Cover and let grill for about 10 -15 minutes.

Patience please, goodness happening inside.
Patience please, goodness happening inside.

Once it is done, be careful taking it off the grill for it will be hot! You can open up the packet to let it cool for a short time before serving. Feel free to tear a few pieces of fresh basil or thyme to top it all off.

Finished product topped with fresh basil.
Finished product topped with fresh basil.

It can be served by itself or along side a protein or main dish to supply a great flavor punch and freshness to any meal!

Served with a steak for a light side dish.
Served with a steak for a light side dish.

Serve it up warm and enjoy!

Not Your Average Smoothie

My go to Smoothie Starters
My go to Smoothie Starters

It can be tough to have a good breakfast in the morning or even a snack throughout the day. You have to factor in time restraints and portability issues (Looking at you bowl of cereal.) Given all of that, there are still ways to make healthy options available to you and have them prepared quickly.

Let’s look at the smoothie. Grabbed from any smoothie emporium they can be loaded with sugar and calories that you didn’t expect. However, making them one your own will let you control the ingredients, save you money and also save you time.

Step 1: Ingredients

The best part here is you can throw anything in and make it taste pretty good. I usually start with a pretty consistent base of ingredients.

  • Plain Greek Yogurt ( 1 cup or less. It will provide you with protein to keep you satisfied longer)
  • Half or whole Banana (depending on how much I am looking to make)
  • Flax seeds
  • Almond or Peanut Butter ( 1 tablespoon, it will add about 100 calories. So you can omit this if you’re trying to make a low-calorie option)
  • Spinach (I love greens in my smoothie, but it is a taste thing for some people)
  • Water (4-8oz)

Now here is where it gets fun. You can add anything you want. It can be more veggies, more fruit, a protein powder, or even a couple chocolate chips to add to the flavor profile! Below is just a small list of extras that you can add, but ultimately the only limit is what you can fit in your blender, or what taste good. 🙂

  • Apple
  • Raspberries
  • Blueberries
  • Milk (almond, soy, regular, splash of chocolate for a great chocolate banana thing going on.)
  • Kale
  • Ginger
  • Peaches
  • Cherries

You get the idea, anything you want! This is a great time to sneak those pesky veggies into your smoothie. See if you can sneak in some to get your daily allotment in early. Just be mindful of the amounts you are using with fruit and milk. If you are not careful you can turn one of at home smoothies into a smoothie chain store monstrosity.

Step 2: Fill it up

This part is pretty simple. Put it all in the blender! I always start with my liquid on the bottom and I do not use ice. Mostly because I freeze the fruit that is in season so I can use it later. If it doesn’t seem to be mixing well, you might need to add a little more water or liquid of your choice.

Step 3: Fire up the Blender

The fun begins! Watch as the colors blend and make an appetizing bright green, red or blue! Or perhaps it has turned a shade of brown….don’t worry that still might taste good do not lose hope!

Step 4: Pour and Enjoy

Here is the beauty of it all. If you put a good amount of ingredients in chances are there is about 32oz of smoothie frothing before your eyes. You can dump half of that into your to go cup and deposit the other half in the fridge. Now you have snack for now and other for later, amazing! If you are at work all day maybe pack it all up and drink half now and half around 2:00pm when you just want to crawl under your desk and nap. It will give you little energy boost and be great tasting!


  • Be creative
  • Experiment with ingredients
  • You can make all these with no dairy or nuts
  • Make enough for two snacks
  • Sneak in your veggies
  • Enjoy!

For a quick example, say you started with the smoothie starter in the amounts I listed at the start. Then you added a scoop of protein powder and a few handfuls of your favorite fruit. You would be stuffing about 40 grams of protein in that smoothie. Split into two meals that gives your a snack with 20 grams of protein per snack! If you omit the protein powder you will be around 18-20 grams of protein for your whole smoothie. Which is still great.

If you don’t do dairy, don’t worry. Any favorite protein you have can be added in and the yogurt just gives it a touch more thickness. So you won’t be losing too much there.

What are some of your favorite smoothie concoctions? We would love to hear about them and try them out! Tweet me or leave a reply! The more ideas we have in our arsenal the better tasting our meals and hot summer days can be!




Dynamic Duo Workout

We all know how hard it can be to get up and get moving on your own. We also know how much easier it is once we have someone to motivate and encourage us. That can be a coach, trainer, friend, anyone really!

The point is having someone to hold you accountable and help you succeed is huge, whether you are starting or maintaining your fitness program.

Today we are going to focus on fun games and things that you can do with a partner if you have little or no access to equipment. These are workouts you can do in the park, by the beach or anywhere with a little open space. The key to all of this is to remember, it should be fun! Your imagination is the only thing that will limit the games you can come up with. The only goal should be to stay active for 30 minutes ( that includes your rest periods!)

Workout 1 – Catch me if you can

– Find an area such as a park or beach where you can easily mark out either two lanes or a small oval.

– Then proceed to do the following with the distance of your choice

– Time down and back or around for person A, then they rest and time person B

– See who has the best time, then repeat this with the following intervals

– 2 times around or down and back, 3 times, 4 times, 5 times.

– After the 5th round descend back down to 1 going 4,3,2,1.

– Your rest times should increase as your intensity increases.

To make it really fun, race with the person on the descending rounds!

Bragging rights and high fives to the victor!

Workout 2 – Partner jog with Sprints

– Head out like your normally would for a jog with your partner or dog (they love these!)

– As you jog each person will designate a time to sprint, as you go. Switch back and forth until each person has a had 5 turns. So you will have done 10 total sprints. If doing this with your dog you will have to call their sprints out.

– It is as simple as yelling “GO!” The sprints should be short enough to give 80-90% effort for the entire length.

– Try to pick even terrain, but bonus points if you choose a hill to climb on the sprint.

These are just two different ways to add some variety and fun to your outdoor workouts. You have the freedom to create any workout from a simple start point. The more creative you can be the more fun you will have. Bring more people in the mix and make it a workout for 3, 4 or even five of your friends!