down to eat.

This weekend was the end of our 3rd cut with RP (and the end of our first ever CF Ripcord Nutrition Challenge! Woohoo!). I can’t believe we’ve been following RP for almost a year and a half now! They just make it so simple with their templates telling me exactly how much food to eat for every meal and how to make adjustments depending on my training for the day. Following RP has improved my relationship with food so much. Growing up, I was always under the impression that carbs are bad for you, so I would try to avoid them if possible. Which was miserable because carbs are the most delicious. I also had a bad habit of really shorting myself on food, not so much starving myself, but really keeping my calories at a lower level than they needed to be. I was never overweight, but I was also never what I would consider in shape or fit. Thank God RP came into my life and taught me that I can eat carbs, carbs, and more carbs (and protein and fat too, of course) and be in the best shape I’ve ever been in. I now know how to fuel my body properly so that I can do my best in a workout, recover properly, and sleep better. And if I decide to treat myself to a guilty pleasure (Reese’s cups, Cake Bake Shop, Thai food, stop me before I ramble off an excessively long list of my fave foods), I no longer feel the guilt. I thoroughly enjoy whatever treat I’ve eaten and move forward, picking back up on the healthier choices for my next meal. With that being said, I ate ALL the food this weekend in celebration of being finished with our cut. We had the greatest “treat yo-self” weekend. Oh, Parks and Recreation, I sure do miss you…I know I can’t be the only one. Anyways, we had the greatest “treat yo-self” weekend and I don’t regret it for a second!

Josh made his best homemade deep dish pizza yet- flaky, buttery dough; the perfect amount of crunchy green peppers, onions, and mushrooms; my yummy homemade pizza sauce; tons of ooey gooey mozzarella cheese…and he made an extra batch of dough for homemade breadsticks sprinkled with Parmesan and mozzarella cheese. This man is after my heart, y’all!

I might have fallen asleep on the couch after eating that amazeballs pizza while Josh whipped up a homemade chocolate chip skillet cookie for two for dessert. We paired the cookie with the always scrumptious Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream (Middle West Whiskey and Pecans flavor this time- whiskey flavored ice cream with hints of butterscotch and honey, loaded with salty toasted pecans). For those of you that don’t already know, you can have pints of Jeni’s ice cream shipped right to your house! Do it! There is nothing quite like a warm-from-the-oven gooey melty chocolate chip cookie with that cold bite of silky smooth ice cream on top…it just makes my heart so happy.

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We capped off our date night feast by watching “The Big Sick”. I really enjoyed this movie- there was plenty of humor, it kept my interest piqued the whole time, and I got sucked into the real-life romance of Kumail Nanjiani and his girlfriend, Emily. Definitely recommend seeing this one when you’re in the mood for a romcom or really any time at all.

As luck would have it, we had leftovers from Saturday night, so we sat ourselves down for a Sunday “brunch” of deep dish pizza and breadsticks. If possible, the pizza was even better because it had time for all the flavors to meld overnight. *drool*                               

In keeping with the “treat yo-self” theme, we got the idea to make a trip up to the Cake Bake Shop for lunch. And by lunch, I really just mean dessert. We never make a trip there for anything other than dessert. We stopped at Starbucks on the way because Josh won a $5 gift card for filling out a survey and I got the cutest little hedgehog cake pop!

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We perused the menu and decided on the apple crumble cake for me, the peanut butter banana cream pie for Josh, and a peanut butter honey and jam sandwich cookie for us to share. Everything was beyond delicious. The apple crumble cake had layers of spice cake filled with caramel buttercream and caramel all topped with apple pie crumble. A dream cake for fall. The pie consisted of a peanut butter crust topped with sliced bananas, banana cream, fresh whipped cream, chopped peanuts, and a caramel drizzle. My favorite, however, was the peanut butter honey and jam sandwich cookie- there was the most delectable blackberry jam with honey and peanut butter buttercream sandwiched between two peanut butter cookies. I could have eaten spoonfuls of the blackberry jam all by itself. I’ll most definitely be making a trip back up for the blackberry cake smothered in that scrumptious blackberry jam.  

We’re adorbs…I’m biased. Whatever 😉

After all the dessert, we needed to get moving or I was going to fall asleep. Where better to walk around than the mall? We spent a few hours browsing through the stores, just spending time together with no pressure to be anywhere or do anything. It was lovely. When we left the mall, we found ourselves in a debate about whether to just go home or go eat somewhere. Eating somewhere won. The next question was, should we get Thai food or Cheesecake Factory nachos? Now, I love me some Thai food. And I’ve never had the nachos from Cheesecake Factory, but Josh has talked them up good since he ate them once Black Friday shopping several years ago. We pulled into the parking lot and flipped a coin to decide where to eat. Tails (Cheesecake Factory) it was. The nachos did not disappoint. The chips were extra crispy crunchy, covered in queso and shredded cheese, pico de gallo, sour cream, jalapenos, and spicy shredded chicken. I can see why Josh has had these on his mind for so long. We headed home after our day of eating to lounge on the couch and relax. This weekend was what I needed to reset after cutting for three months, just enjoying time with my husband, eating lots of yummy treats, and gearing myself up to maintain through and enjoy the holidays. Life is too short to be stressed about what to eat and worrying all the fun away. So, take a meal, a day, even a weekend if you’re so inclined, and treat yourself!

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summer’s in the air, baby

Oof, was Saturday morning rough! We went to the gym like usual to get our RP Hypertrophy lifting in before mobility and class. I warmed up, started my sets, and missed lift after lift after lift of a weight that I don’t struggle with anymore. I missed a third of my programmed snatches! That NEVER happens! For every lift I missed, I would take a few steps back away from the bar, reset my mind, and attempt the lift again. And make it. It’s crazy how sometimes a little mind reset can help. When I finally finished my sets of snatches, I moved on to my clean and jerks…which didn’t go much better unfortunately. I had to drop my weight down and really focus on my form. Fatigue from the week, a long list of to-do’s on my mind- I’m not really sure what was going on exactly, but I think those both definitely played into a terrible day of lifting for me. Let’s just say I was more than happy when I was finished lifting for the day.

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Being so bad on the struggle bus, after mobility I decided to head home and start meal prepping. I don’t think my body (or my mind) could have handled a long workout after all of my lifting struggles. When I got home, I got some pork chops (with salt, pepper, and McCormick’s Grill Mates Brown Sugar Bourbon seasoning) baking in the oven while I started the veggie chili. With the cast iron pot simmering full of zucchini, peppers, onions, tomatoes, and mushrooms, I began portioning out the pork loin, broccoli, and green beans. It’s a good thing I can multitask because meal prep has me running around the kitchen like crazy for a couple hours. After the pork chops and chili were finished, I portioned those out into our containers as well and finally sat down to eat my lunch. I feel so accomplished when I’m all done meal prepping, prepared for whatever the week has in store. Josh got home from his last nutrition class, ate lunch, and headed out to mow our yard. I know I’ve said it before, but I truly appreciate that he takes care of the yard so that I don’t have to worry about it. We had a short time to relax after our “chores” were all finished before getting ready for our Olivia’s (our coworker) wedding. The wedding was at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Brownstown and it was a beautiful ceremony. At the reception, we sat with a few of our other coworkers and had a fun time eating, telling stories, and laughing. And of course, we tried all the flavors of cake…don’t judge, we only shared 3 small pieces.   

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Sunday turned into a fun food day for us. We woke up fairly early, ate a small breakfast, and headed up to Broad Ripple for a lovely cake date at the Cake Bake Shop. We sat outside under an umbrella, the sun shining down, bright pink and white flowers lining the fence next to us, and traditional French cafe music playing over the speakers. It truly is a little slice of heaven on Earth. The summer flavors that are available currently make it almost impossible to narrow it down to one flavor to try. After much debate, we finally decided on the Lemon Blueberry cake and the Boston Cream Pie cake. I can’t begin to tell you how amazing they both were. The Lemon Blueberry is three layers of moist blueberry studded vanilla cake, filled with their house made lemon curd, and topped with their lemon vanilla bean buttercream frosting. The Boston Cream Pie is six layers of moist vanilla cake filled with a homemade pastry cream and vanilla buttercream and topped with Belgian fudge frosting, a vanilla buttercream dollop, and a maraschino cherry. Everything was so creamy and rich, I had to stop myself from licking the plate clean! Bon appétit!      

After our cake date, we stopped in at the new Fresh Thyme Farmer’s Market in Broad Ripple. Fresh Thyme is a grocery store set up like a farmer’s market. They offer a large selection of fresh, organic fruits and vegetables, meats, cheeses, and fresh baked breads. There are sections to grind your own coffee, make your own fresh nut butters, and even pour your own local honey or maple syrup. We didn’t feel like heading home quite yet, so we made our way down to the Greenwood Park Mall. We spent a few hours wandering around, stopping in at different shops here and there. I’ve been on the lookout for a chambray shirt and I finally found one I liked and it was even on sale! Yay for bargains! After a bit, we decided to head home…and then decided to turn around at Whiteland and head back up to the new Primanti Bros. restaurant in Greenwood. My friend, Rich, has told me about this place many times and I’ve been wanting to try it. It did not disappoint! I ordered the Almost Famous pastrami & cheese sandwich (grilled pastrami, provolone cheese, fresh cut french fries, sweet and sour cole slaw, and tomato all stuffed in Italian bread) and Josh got the New Yorker Tall Boy sandwich (grilled pastrami and corned beef, provolone cheese, fresh cut french fries, sweet and sour cole slaw, tomato, and spicy beer mustard on Italian bread). The sandwiches were so huge, I could hardly fit it in my mouth. You’ve got to make a stop there if you’re ever in Greenwood or near any of their locations at least once in your life.           

I headed over to my parents with Rocko after we got home from Greenwood for a little pool and relaxation time. It was a perfect day to lounge in the pool and the water felt great. I’m always very grateful that my parents let us enjoy their pool and are always willing to share an afternoon with us. We capped off our amazing day watching Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and Life in Pieces on Netflix, enjoying a root beer float and a bowl of vanilla ice cream with chocolate chips. Here’s hoping for many more amazing summer weekends just like this!

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