So I had figured this Christmas would be extremely depressing given that it was my first Christmas without my grandma, and while I definitely had some tears I also had some fun! I know it’s exactly what she would have wanted. As I get older, I truly am learning the real meaning behind holidays and it’s not what gifts you receive; it’s who you spend that time with. A little re-cap, shall we?
After almost 2 weeks of being sick and barely working out, I finally felt like I could breathe enough to get in some sweat sessions this week. Let me tell you, they felt reeeeeal good. I mean, I can barely walk and that’s how I like it! Life these days feels really weird if I’m not sore. Sunday I ran 3 miles and did Level 1 of Ripped in 30. After working all day, I came home and whipped up these cookies for my co-workers and they were a huge hit!
White Chocolate Cranberry Pumpkin Protein Cookies
- 2 cups oat flour
- 2 scoops protein powder (I used GNC’s pumpkin flavor, on sale now!! but vanilla would also work!)
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 4-5 packets sweetener (I used Splenda)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 5 (or more) TBSP’s white chocolate chips or chunks
- 2/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup egg whites
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 15 oz can pumpkin
Mix dry and wet separately then combine. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. I made about 14 large sized cookies out of the dough. Bake for 25-30 minutes. If you choose to not use protein powder, they may take a little longer. I know cooking with protein powder tends to make things burn faster!
These come out the consistency of a cake/muffin but my co-workers loved them (and they don’t always love my healthy concoctions!) and I obviously did too!
Christmas Eve I worked all day and then ran a delightful 3.5 miles that evening. Later on, John and I decided to do what we did last year on Christmas Eve; order Domino’s. Before you judge me, hear me out. I used to LOVE Domino’s back in my extremely unhealthy eating days… loved their wings, pizza, and breadsticks. I went a long time without eating it, but recently I fell in love with their pizza again and have been ordering a much healthier version. I get mine with no cheese, and extra jalapeno’s! They have changed their pizza a lot and mine has virtually no grease and with the no cheese option I am saving a ton of calories. Pizza without cheese seems weird, yes, but I swear it’s good. I put crushed red pepper and garlic powder on it and dip it into hot sauce. I like my food VERY spicy.
‘Tis the season. BULKING season, that is 😉
After sleeping in on Christmas morning, I headed down to Central Park for a run. A little background on my bladder; it’s basically non-existent. I swear. I have to pee at least every hour and that’s if I’m not drinking water or coffee. Since I usually am, I have to pee twice an hour if not more. So from my apartment to Central Park, it’s anywhere from 20 minutes to 40 minutes, depending how long I have to wait for the train and how slow it decides to go. First thing I have to do before I start running is find a bathroom. Generally not too hard in NYC, but many places are closed on Christmas Day so I had to get creative. The Time Warner building (aka Columbus Circle) is my go-to but they were closed, so I headed to the hotel that is connected called the Mandarin Oriental. Their lobby is located on the 35th floor (!!) and it’s a place I am definitely adding to my list to go have a drink! The views are amazing. So was their bathroom, to get back to my original point 😉
Once my peeing dilemma was solved, I ran an amazing 5 miles in the park. It was the perfect weather and totally sunny. I did a lap on the reservoir and it ended up being an obstacle course run, full of jumping over puddles and tourists (sorry I’m not sorry to the tourists I probably knocked over- watch yo selves.)
After a shower and some relaxing, I headed back down to the park for a stroll with John! We also did this last Christmas, so I guess this is now a tradition. It was getting dark, but we walked for awhile with some coffee and started to freeze to death. I completely hate winter and temperatures that get below 50. I also voice this opinion quite frequently and loudly, so it was a miracle John wanted to take a winter walk with me 🙂 I guess it was his Christmas spirit!
Last year we ate Christmas dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in the city, 5 Napkin Burger, which I have wrote about several times. We kind of just stumbled on it last Christmas and since it was open we ate there. This year we made a reservation for the Union Square location, mostly because we were too lazy to figure out what else was open. Upon entering, who do I run into other thannn.. my best friend Brenda and her boyfriend Eddie! Legit, great minds think alike. Us 4 made some fools out of ourselves when we saw each other and had the whole restaurant looking over at us, which is prettttty typical. They were just getting done eating so we ordered our food and got our fat Christmas feast on.
Delish as always.
The day after Christmas I was supposed to go upstate to see my family, but I woke up feeling really sick (again) and decided to stay put. Not the best idea to travel on a (dirty) bus for 4 hours when I’m still sick, plus they were getting hit with a big snow storm. I spent most of Wednesday sleeping, except for the one meal I ate all day at a diner near me.
More napping, then I finally made myself do Level 1 of Ripped in 30. That diner meal literally held me over all night (I ate it at 2 PM) so it was the only thing I ate all day! Sleep just sounded way better than food for once in my life.
Yesterday was more sleep, cleaning, Levels 1 AND 2 of Ripped in 30, and the return to healthier eating. My abs are SO sore today from both rounds of Jillian and I’m lovin’ it. I ate like a pig all week but the workouts balanced out some, so my pants aren’t too tight 😉 As all of us are, I’m certainly ready for a new year and toning it up! It goes without saying that this year was really hard and awful for huge chunks, but I am picking myself up from the ground and determined to make 2013 better.