Weekend Update

 

In honor of my all time favorite Weekend Update character, Stefon…

Well guys, as you can see there was no Did You Know? Friday this week.  I gave my exit seminar on Thursday for grad school and was working round the clock all last week.   I finally went on a date with my bloglovin feed yesterday and there were literally 250 posts in there!

My days have looked like this:

Wake up

Go to lab.

Pull together four years worth of research into a 45 min presentation for the department (AKA the exit seminar)

Eat lunch

Continue working

Go to Kosama

Eat dinner

Continue working.

Sleep for about 5-6 hours.

Repeat.

Sooo my blogging mojo hasn’t really been in full force.

An update about the awesome things this last week:

photo3 thumb Weekend Update

There is only one (big) thing left on the grad school to do list!!!  With my seminar over (phew!), I feel like I can just charge full steam ahead on my dissertation.  My mom and sister were able to attend and it was so nice to see them, as well as show them the products of all of my hard work!

photo1 thumb Weekend Update

I finally ate at Mickies Dairy Bar!!  Mickies is a longtime staple here in Madison…on the weekends, the line is usually out the door and around the block to get in for brunch!  It’s been around forever and is the total package for your old school diner.  My sister and I ventured over there the morning after my seminar and weren’t disappointed!photo2 thumb Weekend Update

We’ve finally had a streak of spring weather that lasted more than 2 days…so the lake is thawing!!!  My roommate and I went for our first bike ride of the season yesterday and it was GLORIOUS.

Changing gears….If this update is going to be honest though, I have a few confessions.

I have seriously been lacking the positive vibes lately, which has hindered me from blogging because I don’t want to be a downer.    It’s driving me crazy!  I cannot snap out of it.  I just feel overwhelmed, all of the time.   But due to my amazing over thinking skills, I think I’ve found the cause:

a) i have a huge dissertation to write and defend at the beginning of june, both which will require round the clock work until then…this conflicts with the fact that it is getting nicer out and I just want to be outside!  I see all of my friends doing super cool things  and I am missing out!  The whole buckling down and sucking it up realization just takes some time to get used to.  I also think I need to stay off social media for awhile…as much as I try not to compare myself to others and their lives, it’s been hard lately.

b)  I am scared to move away from Madison.  Making friends as an adult is hard and was so hard for me the first year of grad school. Now, I finally feel like I have a a great life here and now I’m moving to a place where I know very few people my age.  The area that I’m moving to isn’t known to have a whole lot for 20-something’s (compared to Madison), so I guess that I’m worried about what will happen.  What am I going to do on the weekends? Am I ever going to meet anyone?  How will I live without ultimate frisbee? <—slight exaggeration there, but you get my point.

However, I do know that I still am thankful every day for the fact that I have my dream job as an assistant professor waiting for me.  It actually makes my worries above sound ridiculous.  But in an attempt to get out of my funk, I had to get it out there.

What are your thoughts?  How do you kick the pity party and get yourself to be positive again?

Did You Know? Friday Linkup – Healthy Fats in Nuts

Hi all! First things first, congrats to Hannah for winning the Nasoya Tofu Coupon Giveaway!

Second of all, it’s Did You Know? Friday! And we’re doing our monthly linkup for your nutrition information lovin’ pleasure.   Remember—this is your time to show off your nutrition knowledge as well!  Have you posted on a good nutrition or fitness topic lately? We wanna hear it.  Join the link up below!  As for over here, we’re keeping it short and sweet today, so let’s get started!

DidYouKnowBannernew thumb Did You Know? Friday Linkup – Healthy Fats in Nuts

Did You Know that most nuts have high concentration of healthy fats?

Nuts sometimes get a bad name.  As a “food group”, if we were to group them all together, they are relatively high in total fat compared to other foods  But you have to read in between the lines to get the whole story!

Most nuts are high in unsaturated and omega-3 fats, which have different chemical bonds than saturated fats.  Unsaturated and omega-3 fats can be protective against heart disease in moderate amounts, and help decrease cholesterol levels.   For example, look at the nutrient profile of almonds– highest in unsaturated fats!  Cashews, walnuts, and almonds are all great examples of nuts fitting the high unsaturated and omega fatty acid profile.   All are great snack options!  We should use this topic as a starting block to remember that when considering “fat” in foods, it’s important to remember that not all fats are created equal.  While we want to moderate our intake, aim for foods high in unsaturated and omega fatty acids!

(Sources used are in links).

And there we have it! Let’s talk about the linkup:

Connect with the lovely hostesses:

Amanda at Diary of a Semi-Health Nut

Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest |bloglovin’

Emily at More Than Just Dessert

Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | bloglovin’

Emily at Sinful Nutrition

Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | bloglovin’

Rules:

1. Link back to one of our blogs.

2. Link up as many posts you wish with the theme of nutrition facts/knowledge/tips/information.

3. Visit at least one of the other links.

4. No product promotion or giveaway link-ups.

5. Remember to cite your sources!


3 Ingredient Chocolate Butterscotch Pudding

Happy Monday!

More like, Happy Opening Day baseball fans!  I’m not a huge baseball fan, but to me, Opening Day is like telling mother nature “IT’S TIME FOR SPRING FOR REAL NOW”.   Although I’ve been a Cubs fan all my life, I’m paying my respects to the state of Wisconsin  and the Brewers today!

photo16 thumb1 3 Ingredient Chocolate Butterscotch Pudding

Ya missed those selfies, didn’t ya.

Anyway, If you haven’t entered the Nasoya Tofu coupon giveaway here at More Than Just Dessert, today is the LAST day to enter!  Click here and follow the directions on the rafflecopter!

Today’s post may seem a little repetitive, but I have another recipe for you!  Last week, I posted my review of Nasoya Tofu and how my favorite way to use tofu so far has been using silken tofu in pudding!  This weekend I played around with the recipe I had already adapted last week and created an even better one!  You see, my favorite pudding of all time is butterscotch, so I knew I wanted to play around with that flavor.

I present to you…

3 Ingredient Chocolate Butterscotch Pudding

chocolatebutterscotchpudding thumb 3 Ingredient Chocolate Butterscotch Pudding

Because my coffee table and photo dishes are limited, I took these pictures in the same exact elements as the original chocolate tofu pudding recipe, but I swear there is butterscotch in there!

Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients

2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips*

1/3 cup butterscotch chips*

1 pkg. Nasoya Silken Tofu

*Some baking chips do contain dairy, while others do not.  Make sure you check the ingredient labels on different brands if you want to make this dairy free!

Directions

Drain water off silken tofu and use a blender to puree the tofu until smooth (for my Ninja, this was about 2-3 minutes). 

Melt chocolate chips and butterscotch chips in a small saucepan over medium heat. When completely melted and smooth, use a spatula to spoon the mixture into the blender.

Blend tofu and chocolate/butterscotch sauce together for 3-4 minutes.  If smooth, transfer to a bowl and refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours.  If still chunky, blend for another 3 minutes.

photo3 thumb3 3 Ingredient Chocolate Butterscotch Pudding

Seriously, I still can’t get over how delicious this tofu based pudding is!  Call me a believer!

And that’s it!  I’m entering this recipe in the Nasoya Tofu “Think Outside the Block” Contest that ends TODAY.  If you have a recipe you’d like to enter, hurry to their facebook page to submit!
 3 Ingredient Chocolate Butterscotch Pudding

Did You Know? Friday -–What Are Probiotics?

Happy Friday!  Another round of nutrition knowledge for y’all this week, but first—if you haven’t entered my Nasoya Tofu giveaway, make sure you do so here!  Super easy to enter!DidyouKnow thumb1 Did You Know? Friday  –What Are Probiotics?

A couple weeks ago, I posted a question on my facebook asking friends to post their burning nutrition questions.  One question I got was regarding probiotics, so we’re discussing that science here today!

Probiotics are mainly helpful to your gut/intestines.  Believe it or not, there are over 10 trillion bacteria living in your intestines–most of these are good bacteria and you need them there!  These bacteria help digest your food and protect from bad bacteria that may pass through your system.   Probiotics are living bacteria present in food or supplements that are associated with improved digestive health and helping those bacteria already present in your gut.  They are naturally high in foods like yogurt, miso, and kefir.  Many foods will also add probiotics to their foods and are labeled “with active cultures” or something along those lines.  

Studies have shown that consuming probiotics has been associated with alleviating diarrhea and constipation → both common digestive problems.  They have also shown to help relieve overall symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease, ulcers, and show a protective effect against colon cancer.  I also know that there are probiotic supplements out there, in addition to being found in food products.  If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you know that I am all about FOOD IS THE WAY.  Foods high in probiotics will have other nutrients that benefit health, while supplements are a concentrated source of one type of nutrient or function.   

The gut/intestines/digestive system is starting to get a lot of attention in the nutrition world, as more and more scientific studies are showing that your diet can change the bacteria in your gut–for better or for worse!  For example, check out this awesome study looking at the interaction between your gut bacteria and how it helps ferment dark chocolate to benefit us!

Sources Used:

Understanding Nutrition (Textbook) by Whitney and Rolfes

Chen, CC and Walker, Probiotics and Prebiotics: Role in Clinical Disease States

And that’s it for today!  GO CYCLONES!

cyclones thumb Did You Know? Friday  –What Are Probiotics?

Now you tell me…Any fun plans this weekend? Any other march madness fans out there?
 Did You Know? Friday  –What Are Probiotics?

Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday

Happy Thursday!  Lots of random thoughts today, so I thought I would link up for Running With Spoons Thinking Out Loud this week!

My cooking mojo is back!  In order to spend less, I’ve been eating at home more often and taking the time to cook. I’ve been OBSESSED with making my own almond butter in my food processor.  From that almond butter, I’ve been making these delicious gluten free chocolate cookies!

photo1 thumb2 Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday

Dinners have also been a highlight.  I’m trying to incorporate more veggies, which has meant roasting cauliflower and eating it by the pound.  Seriously, can’t get enough.

 photo2 thumb2 Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday

Oh and that whole spending less money thing?  There’s another reason I need to curb my spending…I may have bought a pretty expensive plane ticket a couple weeks ago…not ashamed!  icon smile Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday icon smile Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday icon smile Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday

photo3 thumb2 Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday

One thing that made me mad (in fact, I’m still fuming a little) this week, was this story about how SELF magazine used a woman’s photo in their magazine without telling her that it would be used negatively.  Just read the full story here –> Magazine Makes Fun of Cancer Survivor’s Tutu

SELF thumb Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday

image source

I do not understand how someone thought this was ok?!  Why can’t a magazine PROMOTING health be supportive of just women and fitness in GENERAL?  End rant.

Back to positivity, I also really enjoyed reading these blog posts this week!

To The Health Trend Haters from Kim @ My Healthy Nest

It’s Ok To Say No from Katie @ Talk Less, Say More

Why Magazines Geared Toward Women Suck from Cori @ Olive To Run **this was an awesome response to the SELF magazine debacle I mentioned before!  So well written.

I’ve also been getting to know by Ninja Ulitma Blender again.  I seriously cannot thank the kind folks at Ninja enough for sending me one to review last fall, I swear there isn’t anything that thing can’t do!

I made pudding from tofu in it…

photo4 thumb2 Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday

I made “fake mashed potatoes out of cauliflower in it…

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Annnnnd obvi some smoothies have gotten back into the mix…

photo1 thumb3 Thinkin’ Out Loud Thursday

Embracing the randomness, this Thursday!  Don’t forget to enter my giveaway for Nasoya Tofu Coupons!!!

Now tell me…any big plans for this weekend?

Nasoya TofuPlus Review, Tofu Chocolate Pudding, and Giveaway!

First things first….HOW ‘BOUT THEM BADGERS AND CYCLONES?  My two loves are in the sweet sixteen and I am one happy midwestern basketball lovin’ girl. Not an ISU fan?  Watch this, you’ll see. icon smile Nasoya TofuPlus Review, Tofu Chocolate Pudding, and Giveaway!

On to the important stuff! So, last week, I talked about branching out and trying new foods with my story about how I overcame disliking carrots at Buffalo Wild Wings.  For those of you who read that and a) still think I am normal and b) keep comin’ back to this blog for more, just know I love ya. icon smile Nasoya TofuPlus Review, Tofu Chocolate Pudding, and Giveaway!

Anyway, another food that I used to shy away from was tofu → I usually only eat tofu 4-5 times a year and it is always someone else preparing it.  I have always been too scared to prepare it myself, as the texture weirds me out a little.  Ok, more like a lot.

However, the times they are a changin’!  The kind folks at Nasoya Tofu contacted me and asked if I wanted to review one of their products, TofuPlus.  I figured this was a good chance to try out preparing tofu for myself, so I went for it!  I tried out the “Extra-Firm Tofu Plus” and the “Silken Tofu”.   Spoiler alert:  I’m not as afraid of tofu anymore after I tried preparing it myself!

TofuPlus thumb Nasoya TofuPlus Review, Tofu Chocolate Pudding, and Giveaway!

image source: Nasoya

Because I’m alllll about the texture, I was able to use the TofuPlus by pan-searing it on my stove and adding it to salads and my egg scrambles in the morning.   This was an acceptable (and pleasant!) texture.  The “extra firm” made all the difference to me and the texture was much more enjoyable than my past tofu experiences!  As someone who doesn’t eat tofu all that often, I would definitely get this again to mix it up on meatless mondays. :)  The TofuPlus is ideal because it is also fortified with vitamins B2, B6, B12, D and Calcium.

For the silken tofu, I had a more creative plan!  Because I don’t eat tofu very often, I didn’t want to over do it when adding it into my meals.   I had heard of using tofu to make chocolate mousse/pudding before, so I decided to give that a shot!  I modified this recipe here.

Pudding thumb Nasoya TofuPlus Review, Tofu Chocolate Pudding, and Giveaway!

You guys.  Easy-peasy recipe right here!  All ya need are two ingredients–silken tofu and chocolate chips– and you’ve got yourself a wonderful dessert that can also be dairy-free!**

**Note about the chocolate chips.  I used regular semi-sweet chocolate chips, which can contain traces of dairy.  To play it safe, my vegan friends have recommended using “Enjoy Life” vegan chocolate chips!

It’s this easy:

Chocolate Pudding With Tofu

Take one package of silken tofu, drain the water off, and place in blender.  Blend for 1-2 minutes until smooth. Take ¾ cup chocolate chips and melt in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Slowly add the melted chocolate to the tofu in the blender  Blend for 3-4 minutes on high.  Use a spatula to remove from blender and into a bowl, and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.  The refrigeration is key, as this allows it to thicken and become “mousse” or “pudding” like!

I thought the pudding tasted great– just as rich and chocolately as the real stuff!

Giveaway Time!!!

The best part is if you’ve made it through this monster of a post, you’ve come to the best part!

Nasoya is giving one lucky More Than Just Dessert Reader two coupons to try out their products!  Even if you are new to the tofu world, I would still encourage you to enter the giveaway– what have you got to lose?!  If I can overcome my fear of the tofu, I think you may like it too!

To enter the giveaway:

1. Just follow the directions on the rafflecopter below.  It may take a second to load!

2. Entries must be in by March 31st, 2014 at 11:59 pm.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you are a tofu fan, Nasoya is also hosting another giveaway to challenge their consumers to Think Outside the Block and share their favorite tofu recipes on its Facebook page.  By sharing your recipes on their page (which I linked above) you enter for a chance to win the $500 (grand prize) or $300 (runner up). The contest ends on March 31, 2014….do it!!!

Full Disclosure:  I received two coupons to try out Nasoya Tofu products as compensation for this post, as will the giveaway winner.  I am not being compensated in any other way.  All thoughts and opinions are my own!

Did You Know? Fridays- How Much Television Are We Watching?

HAPPY FRIDAY!  Annnnd….HAPPY MARCH MADNESS!

I’ll be honest– it’s a straight up tie between college football and march madness when it comes to which season is my favorite.  My brackets are filled out and I’ve already had a few heart attacks from overtime games!  Thanks for killing my dreams, St. Joe’s and NC State…

photo18 thumb Did You Know? Fridays  How Much Television Are We Watching?

Anyway, although I love march madness and all of the college hoops that are on, I have to work extra hard to pull myself away from the TV to get stuff done during this crazy sports time. I thought it would be appropriate for this week’s Did You Know? to be television themed.  Soooo…

DidyouKnow thumb Did You Know? Fridays  How Much Television Are We Watching?

Did You Know….that the average American household watches 34 hours of television…PER WEEK? The 34 hours statistic comes from the Nielsen Media Research, which collects data on numerous aspects of television– show and commercial ratings, demographics, hours watched, etc.    Keep in mind, this is 34 hours a week per household, not person, but that still translates into almost 5 hours of TV per household a day!  When I looked into the data from Nielson (link above), it included all households (single people, families, old people–its a wide assortment), which I thought was interesting–I’m curious as to how the averages break down for specific age groups!  

In addition to that startling fact about how much time we spend in front of our TV’s, I also found some research on how that links to our food habits. A study in adolescent boys in central and eastern europe found that those who watched more TV were more likely to consume sweets and soft drinks on a daily basis (they measured television watching on a daily level).   Television watching has also been correlated with obesity risk.  As part of the Nurses Health Study (a large study that is referenced in many nutrition research databases), it was found that TV watching was  associated with significantly elevated risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes.  It is important to remember that this finding was an association– watching TV doesn’t necessarily CAUSE obesity, but several studies, like that one, found that TV watching could be a contributor to obesity due to that association.  

Your Did You Know? Friday Fun Fact about me this week:

I have never broken any bones!!! Knock on wood.  I know that’s kinda lame, but I have been thinking a lot lately about how lucky I am to have never had any major accidents or injuries. :)  Have you broken anything big? 

How much TV do you think you watch per week?

Chocolate Almond Butter Cookies (Gluten-Free! Dairy-Free!)

Mmmmm, happy hump day!  I have an awesome creation and recipe revelation for you today. 

I have always loved baking…perhaps too much!  Especially when I stress….I turn on my mixer and go to town.  A few weeks ago my roommate happened upon a great cookie recipe in which we modified to be even a little healthier!   I present to you….

Chocolate Almond Butter Cookies!

Cookies1 thumb Chocolate Almond Butter Cookies  (Gluten Free! Dairy Free!)

The best thing about this recipe is that it is gluten-free…it uses NO flour at all, not even almond flour!  They are also dairy-free.  The base of these cookies is almond butter (which is SUPER easy to make yourself).  I had never used almond butter before, but I don’t know if I’ll ever go back now that I’ve tried it!   We also adapted the recipe to use banana as the sweetner instead of brown sugar!  You can taste the banana a little bit in the cookies, but it’s not overwhelming at all and is a healthier source of sugar than plain ol’ brown sugar. :)  These cookies literally took 7 minutes to prepare, so they are a quick fix!

Baking with almond butter results in the cookies tasting slightly different than your typical cookies, but in my opinion they still taste amazing and are a great chocolate fix!  I actually really like the “nuttier” taste.  The texture is great too. icon smile Chocolate Almond Butter Cookies  (Gluten Free! Dairy Free!) I would definitely recommend cooking with almond butter and using the bananas for other baking adventures too! 

Without further ado, here is the adapted recipe we used!  Recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction.

Chocolate Almond Butter Cookie Ingredients:

1 large egg

1 cup almond butter (room temperature or cold)

2 ripe bananas (2 small-medium or 1 huge)

1/2 cup cocoa

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Beat egg and add all ingredients except chocolate chips to food processor and process until well mixed (about 1-2 minutes).  Remove blade and mix in chocolate chips with a spatula.  Spoon out cookies (about 1 in. in diameter) onto greased baking sheet.  Bake for 13-15 minutes. Makes 12-13 cookies.

cookies2 thumb Chocolate Almond Butter Cookies  (Gluten Free! Dairy Free!)

Enjoy!

Question of the day…what is your favorite type of nut butter?

Buffalo Wild Wings taught me to like carrots (tales of a former veggie hater)

One question I get asked as a blogger is, “If you could start over again, would you do anything differently?”

My answer is yes, but I’m usually halfway joking.   If I could start now after seeing how far I’ve come, I would call my blog “Tales of a Former Veggie Hater”.  You see, when I started this blog back in 2011, I hated most veggies.  I never would have guessed that what started as me sharing recipes would turn into healthy living and nutrition blog!  Along the way, I have taught myself to like vegetables and never looked back. icon smile Buffalo Wild Wings taught me to like carrots (tales of a former veggie hater)

Anyway, so I’ve shared a few things on this blog in the past about my journey into liking vegetables –you’ve heard me talk about how I now like salad and spaghetti squash…but as of recently, there was another veggie that was conquered.

Carrots!  In particular, raw carrots. Those little buggers. Because I’m a texture freak about my food, you can guess that it was the texture and thickness that had freaked me out about carrots and completely turned me off to them in the past. 

Insert Buffalo Wild Wings, as weird as that sounds…

buffalowildwings 200x200 thumb Buffalo Wild Wings taught me to like carrots (tales of a former veggie hater)

image source

Ya know when you get wings there, they come with celery and carrots? True of most places with wings, I know.   Well, at BWW they cut them into squares and for some reason, it always enticed me to try them every time I went.  At first, it was a teeny tiny bite and that’s it.  BUT, in the back of my mind I really wanted to like carrots, as I knew they were a fabulous nutritious snack.    So for the past year or so, I tried a bite of carrot each time I went (this was probably six times total).   Over time, I graduated into eating A WHOLE CARROT STICK.  I’m sure some of you are like, this girl is cray, how can you be proud of that?  But I was, because slowly but surely I adjusted to the texture of carrots that once freaked me out.

Are you ready for this?

Since the last time I ate at BWW (probably 2 months ago), I’ve been trying carrots (baby carrots or regular) whenever they’ve been offered to me – appetizers veggie trays, friends, etc.  Then, two weeks ago, I bought my first bag of baby carrots SOLELY for the purpose of eating them raw!  Like, for a snack!  By themselves! Or With hummus!

photo16 thumb Buffalo Wild Wings taught me to like carrots (tales of a former veggie hater)

 

photo15 thumb Buffalo Wild Wings taught me to like carrots (tales of a former veggie hater)

AND I ATE THE ENTIRE BAG.  Didn’t throw any out from going bad!!  I officially conquered a food I hated and added another veggie to the list of loves. :)  It’s possible you guys!  I know there are other veggie haters out there and I feel for you, I really do—so here’s my advice:

The Take Home Message (Listen Close!)

It’s important to remember that when you are changing your lifestyle, you have to take little cues and run with them in order to make long term changes—especially in changing your food habits! You just have to find what works for you—either trying small amounts over time or mixing your nemesis food with other foods that you like, you have to be open to liking the food and working it into your meals.   Small changes = lasting results!

And there you have it. A true story how Buffalo Wild Wings taught me to like carrots. icon smile Buffalo Wild Wings taught me to like carrots (tales of a former veggie hater)

Now you tell me…what foods have you “overcome” and learned to like?  How did you do it?!

My first week at Kosama

First of all, let’s just get this disclaimer out of the way.  I am in NO WAY being compensated for writing this.  I happened to find Kosama on my own, do the research on it’s philosophy, find a groupon, and try it out.  This is strictly informative about a) how I got my @$$ in gear after gaining a little weight this winter and b) my honest opinions about Kosama.

photo4 thumb1 My first week at Kosama

Sooo yeah. Over the past couple months, I may have seen 8-10 lbs. creep on. I have all the excuses in the world, but in the end I just let my eating habits slip a little and didn’t get to the gym.  Here was my dilemma though on how to tackle it:

In normal weather (not crazy winter), I just run outside.  I have run into plateaus in the past where i didn’t have enough muscle and couldn’t get any faster and had injuries happen.  I knew my workout regimen needed to include strength training.  Also, It’s been too cold to run outside, so that was out.   Next problem: the university gym that is free to me isn’t ’t necessarily on a bus route and with it getting dark so early, I don’t feel comfortable walking home through the neighborhood to my apartment as there have been a lot of muggings and robberies lately.

This is where Kosama came in.

A couple weeks ago, I saw a groupon or 8 weeks of Kosama for around $60.  Normally, I think its that price per MONTH so I knew it was a good deal.  It’s on the opposite end of town rom my apartment, but I liked that I had to drive there and not worry about walking and feeling unsafe, like I would from the university gym.  I pulled the trigger at the end of February.

I called the last week of February and the manager was so helpful at answering all of my questions.  She recommended attending their form workshop that Saturday and getting a body assessment.  Everyone I talked to was welcoming and friendly!

Form Workshop + Body Assessment (March 1st)

The body assessment was what i expected—before pics, body fat analysis, hip and waist measurements, etc.  I was happy to have a starting set of measurements, because I hadn’t had any since I was pre-weight loss in 2011.  They did a great job of explaining what everything meant.  Even though I already knew what it all meant from my nutrition background, I always pay attention to those types of things to see if it’s in a way that the general public could understand.    The form workshop was also great!  I especially am appreciative of it now after having had a week of classes and knowing that my form is good!

The Classes

Kosama is based on 50 minute fitness classes.  They are the same class throughout each day and then there is a different class each day.  I like this because no matter what time you have to go to on any given Monday, you know what to expect!  The classes also rotate monthly.  Here’s the rundown:

Monday- Upper Body

photo1 thumb1 My first week at Kosama

Lots of kettle bells.  I played it safe the first Monday (last Monday) because I didn’t want to be too sore, but could have pushed it.  I learned very quickly that although the classes are guided, it is still up to you to push yourself!  I appreciated this and this week for my 2nd upper body class I increased my weight and intensity.

Tuesday- KLadder Cardio.  Haven’t gone (tuesdays are busy lab days for me).

Wednesday- Kickboxing

photo2 thumb1 My first week at Kosama

Awesome.  I love that instead of other kickboxing classes where you kick and punch the air, here you get to punch a bag.  They also mix in cardio, which makes me sweat!   Cyyaaaaa frustration!

Thursday- KRock. 

4 minute intervals of different combos- usually a lift with kettlebell and some type of cardio.  Think kettlebell swings + burpees x a million.   I hated every minute of those burpees and squats, but know I will love them when my backside is toned. icon smile My first week at Kosama

Friday & Saturday- Kickboxing with Body Bars (haven’t gone), Lower Body (haven’t gone)

I was out of town last weekend and was unable to attend.  Looking forward to going this weekend though!

Results after 1 week (and a half)

I haven’t seen a huge change in my body weight or how I look, but I know THAT IS NORMAL! I also know this is probably because I was only able to go to three classes last week.

Coming from a nutrition background, the research shows that small changes in weight loss and lifestyle are what lead to permanent weight loss and healthy living.  I am keeping that in perspective as I work to get to my next goal of working on strength training to have a leaner body, as well as get back down those 8 lbs. to my happy weight. icon smile My first week at Kosama

photo3 thumb1 My first week at Kosama

Ultimately, I love Kosama.  I love the atmosphere and the coaches, especially.  Everyone is welcoming and supportive.  If you have to adapt a move to make it easier for your body, the coaches are more than willing to help!  I am excited to keep with Kosama and also add in running to my workout mix now that it is getting nicer out!  I’m hoping that by adding in strength training with the Kosama classes I am able to have better luck with my distance running, be less injury-prone, and tone up!

How about you?  Have you ever tried Kosama?
 My first week at Kosama