Ideas for your week {new series}

by Kim on September 22, 2014

I have to be honest, guys…as much as I love reading about people’s weekends on their blogs every Monday, sometimes I bore myself with my own weekend recaps. Maybe (probably) it’s because my weekends aren’t all that exciting, but my updates always end up feeling like “here’s a few pics, this is my kid, guess what I ate, bla bla bla…”

So, in an effort to spice things up on Mondays (and to not bore myself to death!), I’m launching a new series on the blog. It’s called…

weekly inspiration board

I’ll still probably post some weekend pics, especially if something really exciting goes down (like, if one of my kids is wearing a cute outfit) but I’m going to move away from the 100% weekend recap posts.

Now, I’ll be coming at you every Monday with:

–Ideas of recipes and workouts to try that week

–Something to think about (aka mental homework—I’ve been getting more and more into this stuff lately)

–A brand new fitness challenge for the week

Hope you like it! Let me know what you think.

Here we go…

To eat:

Pretzel crusted chicken with mustard cheddar sauce

I plan on baking this in the oven instead of cooking it in oil. The pretzel + mustard combo sounds out of this world.


Pumpkin apple harvest rice {vegan}


I made this as a Thanksgiving side 2 years ago, when I was breastfeeding my highly-allergic kiddo and cutting a zillion foods out of my diet (opting for vegan recipes wasn’t always even enough, but it was a good start).

I was blown away by its deliciousness, especially given everything it does NOT contain, and I definitely plan on making it again this fall!

–This combo…

eggs and cream cheese

So simple and so, so good.

Some people mix cream cheese right in with the raw egg, pre-cooking, but I like to cook my eggs separately and then fold in a few little dollops of cream cheese. The result is super creamy and rich. (Remember: fat is good for you! Get on that train!)

To do:

This arm workout from Suzanne Bowen.

I tried it last week with 5 lb. weights (and lower reps than what she suggests) and it was killah.

arm workout

–I also love this Compound Crusher workout from Gina.


Ever since learning the benefits of compound movements (aka the upper and lower bod doing something at the same time, with a focus on big muscle groups), I’ve been a huge fan.

I’m talking about things like…

Higher intensity, shorter workouts.

I think it’s pretty widely accepted at this point that the long-slow-and-steady approach to working out isn’t the best way to change your body.

Faster AND more productive? I’m all in.

Big, combined muscle movements that really get your heart pumping, turning a strength workout into strength + cardio.

Gotta love a good two-fer.

Emphasis on balance + functional (aka “useful in real life”) movement.

If you feel wobbly and weird doing a lunge while your arms are trying to do an overhead triceps extension at the same time, you’re doing it right. Real life movements aren’t perfectly smooth and in your preferred plane of motion. (You should see me try to pick something up off the floor while holding a newborn on my shoulder…)

To think:

Think of 3 people you really admire. Write down 3 qualities about each person that stand out to you most. (Can’t be physical or circumstantial things, like “amazing hair” or “has a Ph.D.”—I’m talking things like “empathy,” “leadership skills,” and “positivity.”)

Do you admire these things because you feel lacking in them? If so, how can you pump up these qualities in your own life? (Just because certain traits don’t come to you “naturally” doesn’t mean you can’t MAKE them part of who you are.)

Now, flip this around on yourself.

If someone close to you was asked to write down 3 qualities about YOU that stand out most to them, what would they write? And, in a separate list, what you WANT them to write?

How can you tweak your attitude/approach to life to make List A look more like List B?

Weekly challenge!

The best way to build a habit is to incorporate it into your life every day—even in some tiny way. This definitely applies to fitness.

Doing a 1-minute plank before bed every night won’t lead to rock hard abs, in and of itself, but it WILL help instill the “move every day, in some way” habit into your brain. This will make you less likely to completely fall off the exercise wagon.

Here’s an idea for this week…

Fit Challenge 1

*Remember to take breaks as needed!

*For single-leg squats, do half the squat count on each leg.

For reference:

Air squats (can you get your butt lower than your knees?)

Jump squats

Pistol squats (one-legged squats)

Goblet squats (hold something heavy at chest level, stand in plie squat position, and squat until elbows brush the inside of the knees)

Frog squats (elbows on knees, hands together, squat down and then hinge forward, extending legs straight)

Step squats (#2 at that link, dumbbells optional…place one foot laterally on a step, squat down with weight on the standing leg)

Claim it! What’s something you’re going to do to make this week awesome?

Let me know if you’re up for trying the weekly challenge with me!




{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Larissa September 23, 2014 at 1:29 pm

Ooh love this new series! I’m totally joining the squat challenge.
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Caitlyn September 23, 2014 at 9:40 am

I love the idea for this blog series! I’ve been a reader for a while now but have yet to comment – I really enjoy reading your posts. Keep up the good work! :)


Kim September 23, 2014 at 1:17 pm

Thanks Caitlyn, and thank you for commenting! :) Glad you like the series–let me know if you have any suggestions/things you’d like to see in it!


Kim September 22, 2014 at 7:06 pm

What a great way to start the week!!!
I love compound exercises!!
The scrambled eggs with cream cheese sounds really good – I’ve never tried that but definitely planning to.
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Katie @ running4cupcakes September 22, 2014 at 4:32 pm

Love this! And I’m totally going to try that cream cheese tip. :)
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Ashley Pitt @ A Lady Goes West September 22, 2014 at 4:31 pm

Definitely an inspiring way to start the week! Thanks!
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Katie @ Daily Cup of Kate September 22, 2014 at 4:16 pm

LOVE this idea! I also just got super hungry looking at those recipes. The Pumpkin Apple Harvest Rice looks awesome!
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Giselle September 22, 2014 at 3:53 pm

What a great idea! I get a little bored of recapping my weekends sometimes too. Lately we’ve been eating goat cheese in our eggs and love it! The Love Nugget especially is obsessed with goat cheese. I might have to steal the Frog Squats for my next circuit class! That’s a new one to me and I love it! This week I’m making it a goal to play more with my son (even though he only wants to play with his dad lately) and devote a little more time to learning how to kick box so I can eventually teach it.
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Kim September 23, 2014 at 1:23 pm

Goat cheese + eggs is an amazing idea!!! Thanks! I’m obsessed with goat cheese too–the Love Nugget knows what’s up! :)


Amanda September 22, 2014 at 3:03 pm

I love this! I’m in for the squat challenge…it’s written in my planner. :-) To make this week awesome, I’m going to stop sticking my hand in the candy jar at work. I was really good for a while, but have gotten into the bad habit of sneaking an afternoon candy bar, or two, or three lately, so this week that’s going to stop!
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Kim September 23, 2014 at 1:25 pm

Good for you! Come back and comment next week to tell me how it went with the candy jar! :)


Alysia @ Slim Sanity September 22, 2014 at 2:48 pm

I’ve had cheese on my eggs every day lately! Usually a little bit of cheddar though :)
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Kim September 23, 2014 at 1:26 pm

Cheddar is also awesome! I don’t think you can go wrong with cheese, in general. :)


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