Fitness Fun Fridays #16

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Posted by Adam | Posted in , | Posted on Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Hallllllllloooween! Hahaha I love this time of year. I mean who doesn't like blood, ghosts, and a good scare? Ok... fake blood, then :) I'm not a fan of the red stuff either. I hope everyone has some cool plans and is getting ready to have a scarified safe one.

Yes, I am aware that I missed last Friday. I'm sorry, and while it was totally my fault, I want to blame it on not having a computer at the hotel. I got all the towels, soap, and pool use I want, but computers and Internet... not so much :) My bad, ladies and dudes... but don't worry cool kids, it's time to be brought back to the land where learning is fun, and you walk away from the computer a little smarter.

In celebration of the upcoming awesome holiday (and impending holiday season for that matter), we going to talk about something that mind be bothering some of you... How in the world do I limit holiday weight gain? I mean candy is everywhere, and it understands me...

I have no problem with the holidays. Why? Because holidays are a special day. Imagine how special your birthday would be if it was everyday, or everyweek. It would be boring and routine, and we'd all be much, much older than we are now :) So, with this in mind, to limit any type of overindulgence, remember...

Halloween and other holidays are just one day. If that Kit Kat, or Almond Joy, or whatever is calling your name... go ahead and answer, but keep a limit to yourself. Say something like, well today is Oct 31, so I'll have a piece of candy or two for the next day or two. And that's it. Cut yourself off after that. Just like spilling a beer at a party, this might sound like heresy... but throw the candy out after Election Day. Vote for a president, and vote to stay the healthy holiday eating course. Your body will love you for it :)

Keep up your regular workout routine (shopping, swimming, raking leaves, etc.). As the weather gets colder, we find more and more reasons to stay inside and not brave the harsh elements. Now I'm not saying 'Dude there's 5 feet of snow outside, head over to the gym', but I'm saying just keep up the schedule. The more of a habit you make something, the easier and automatic it becomes.

Always remember to eat balanced meals, especially with protein and fats. Protein and fats keep your metabolism humming along, and also decrease your spike in insulin and blood sugar. While eating turkey breast with a side of Snickers doesn't sound too appetizing, it's more important that you eat balanced meals throughout the day... and then your treats afterward. Having candy as a snack by itself actually has a more detrimental affect than if coupled with other healthy food.

So you just ate 15 King Size Bars? Wow, what houses did you hit up Trick or Treating? Can I come? Anyways, don't worry, it's not the end of the world :) Just remember, stay active. Try your best to:
  • Go take your kids to a corn maze and burn off some energy (just don't lose them),
  • Go to a Haunted House
  • Make a Leaf-Man (like a snowman but with leaves)
  • Apple Picking takes tons of energy and is hilarious
  • Go for a brisk walk with the family before it gets too wicked cold :)
Just remember holidays are special because they happen only a few times a year, so have a good time, and keep your sanity. We definitely have enough going on already, right?

So that's going to be it for today everyone. Thank you all so very much for wishing me luck as I finish school. There's about 25 days left, so I'm just hanging around home, internship-ing for a few hours a week, and trying to take it easy. I'm slowing making my blog rounds, and everyone has such awesome treats going on. I'm going on pumpkin overload, but in a very good way :) Keep 'em coming...

So now, I leave you with some pictures of the past. I like to dress up each year, even as I get older. Since I started chiropractic school I have been...

Joe Dirt
Ron Burgundy
Beetlejuice

Have a Happy and Safe Halloween Folks!
Pumpkin

Home, Home on the... Ponderosa

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Posted by Adam | Posted in , , | Posted on Monday, October 27, 2008

And... I'm back dudes and ladies! Oh man, I've been around the world more in these past 10 days then I have in about a year. Buffalo, NYC, and North Carolina... it was different all around. Wings one day, then China Town food, and then Southern Style biscuits and BBQ :) I think my stomach got extremely confused :)

Firstly, and probably most importantly... thanks to everyone for wishing me luck and a good travel. The flights on both trips were more smooth and quick than a nice beer on a summer day, and I realized that flying really is pretty awesome. And I didn't even get stopped at security this time, which was really nice for once.

So after I came back from NC (which was awesome thanks to a super cool blogger showing me around... more on that later), my parents came on up the following morning, and we packed up all of my stuff and headed back to Albany, NY. I am very relieved to be back home, with my family and dogs, and just relaxing until I graduate :) I know I've been absent from Blogland, but I'll do my best to catch on up and visit all of you lovely people. I have free time now, and my mom and I will probably be doing some sweet baking over the next few weeks... so stay tuned :)

So, as a present to wish me off, my Canadian roommate (no he doesn't say 'eh all the time) made me this family favorite of his. Maybe some of you have heard of it, but I never had... it's this thing called Ponderosa Cake. Cool name, right? Do those buffet restaurants still exist? It's a pretty dense cake, filled with a cinnamon sugar layer, and covered with a brown sugar cinnamon topping and chocolate chips.

Is it awesome? Totally... especially if you're a cinnamon fan like me. I'd say it's like a tender coffee cake, but with chocolate.... and it disappears in about 3 seconds in front of a group of hungry chiropractic students. Seriously, don't blink:)

Now, unfortunately... I did not get the EXACT recipe, but there are a few of them online if you search around. I think it's very similar to the one found here. It's a big, cake, so it takes close to an hour to bake in a 13x9. If any of the Cananaidans out there has a different recipe, I'd like to see it... because many of us Americans don't know much about this delicious cake.
That's all I have for now... I'm still kinda wiped from sleeping in a bunch of different places. I now know how nomads and Christmas hams feel like :) Stay tuned for family desserts, and don't worry, FFF will be back. We need all need advice on Halloween candy control :) Did you know that Tootsie rolls make you stronger? Ha... juuust kidding :)

Milestones, Traveling, and Blogging Buddies

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Posted by Adam | Posted in , | Posted on Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Ok, this is HUGE. H-U-G-E. With both some new readers, and the always beautiful BwD faithful, I reached 50 comments not once... but twice. How awesome is that? And guess what? This is my 50th post. I know... it's crazy. I remember my first few posts, and I was like "I'm kinda running out of material, how do I keep this going?"

The short answer is just keep on typing whatever pops into your head (but PG-13 rated and lower helps), and just have fun. Make some friends, and just be your awesome self. If people didn't like you, or they wouldn't really come by, right? So bascially I'm going to treat this like Mike Tyson's Punch-Out, and just keep rolling with the punches.

So to everyone that helped me on my monumental climb to Cloud 50, thank you ever so much. Since coming back from my trip late Monday, I've already tried to make some rounds, and dropping comments like I did Buffalo wings... into my stomach :)

I have some rather unfortunate news though... and I apologize in advance.

Due to my packing and moving back home this coming Sunday... all baking and glorified food photos are suspended... until early next week. I've packed up my pans, my flour and whatever is left... and I just don't have the time to devote to making awesome sweets. I'm leaving for NC for chiropractic job stuff on Thursday, I come back on Saturday, and then I drive back home to Albany on Sunday. It's going to be a little nuts... but I'm going to make it fun at the same time :)

So, this post is just to let you guys and gals know a few, albeit random things (which you might like):
  1. Everyone who helped me reach 50... you are cooler than an a frozen Vanilla Ice
  2. Don't worry if I'm not around commenting this week... as Arnold said in T2... I'll be back
  3. To the new readers... thanks for checking me out
  4. Buffalo wings are good hangover food... yup
  5. I'm not 18 anymore... or at least my body knows it
  6. If you're still up at 4am, you probably have a good story to tell :)
And finally, I have a few awards and unfinished business to take care of...

Now it's been awhile since I've recieved these, and due to some absent-mindness and somewhat of a hectic schdule... I kinda forgot who gave me exactly what... but here goes :)
Helene of La Cuisine de Helene gave me this Kreative Blogger Award... which I much appreciate. They even spelled creative in a cool way. Thanks!
Carla of Chocolate Moosey gave me this I Love you This Much Award... which is really sweet, but sometimes I think she just wants me for my chocolate... or moose... haha j/k :)
Shreya of Mom's Cooking is a good friend of mine from another time zone, and about a half day away. Even though we live in totally different times, we love good food and good laughs. It's very BFF quality :)

Whew, and that's it. Anu of ...And a Little Bit More... has a fantastic, healthy centered blog. It is a new favorite of mine, and I absolutley love how she incoropates a balanced life style with knockout sweets. She recently tagged me... with these rules:

The rules of the tag are:
(a) List these rules on your blog.
(b) Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog.
(c) Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.

So here are mine.... random facts about me... totally random...
  1. I love breakfast at any time of the day
  2. I actually enjoy shopping with mom
  3. I talk too much during class... or back when I took classes
  4. I have blue eyes
  5. I can't wait to finally start making money
  6. I think Halloween has the best decorations of any holiday
  7. I am very, very excited for the new James Bond
If you want to learn more about me... complete with pictures... you can click here too...
And I need to pass this on to 7 others... hmmm... VeggieGirl, Carla, Natalie, Ben, Dawn, Teresa, and Sarah. I bet they all have some cool responses for us :)

Ok, sorry for the rambling and long post. I have to go pack up some more boxes... remember to stay cool, don't play with sea urchins or fire, and I'll be around your blog soon. If you have any good reccomendations for sights in the Raleigh/Greensboro area... write me an email. Thanks :)

Fitness Fun Fridays #15

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Posted by Adam | Posted in , | Posted on Friday, October 17, 2008

Let me just start out by saying that the gym etiquette comments were probably the most fun comments that the universe has ever seen. Everyone had an individual story, and you guys covered alot of things that I missed... like water fountain loogie-ers and people that wear cologne and makeup to work out. Great stuff... like Mastercard priceless even :)

Well if you're reading this, then Blogger helped a brother out on my first MIA posting. As we speak (or read), I'm away on a short vacation in Buffalo, NY, visiting friends and relaxing until a semi-hectic week begins. I'm not sure if I said this before, but my school has two clinics, the one on Long Island near NYC (where I am), and this other one in Buffalo. So, my plan is to do what normal college kids do, which is go out and be awesome, all while maybe part taking in some Buffalo wings. What do they say? When in Rome...

So today is going to be a pretty short and sweet post, because you need to enjoy your Friday, and I need to go buy some Franks Red Hot... which is the hot sauce of choice in NY :)

Today is going to cover Protein/Meal Replacement Bars. Now, before I start... let me tell you I am not a big protein bar fan. Sure they are convenient, they are awesome for the car and traveling, they CAN be good for dieters (remember to watch calories)... but I just like whole food so much better. I'm a big eater, and these bars are about the size of a cell phone from early 2000. I'm hungry afterwards... like 5 minutes after. And there's no broccoli flavor, either.

I was just kidding about that. Veggie flavored bars would be pretty strange if you ask me.

However, when I'm on the go, or super busy... I do partake in protein bar consumption. And if you like them, that's cool too. My dad loves them, and thinks they are great for work, but he's always confused about the label. Ya know, that nutrition fact stuff. So let's sort this craziness out :)

We're going to tackle this in 3 steps. The first step is the easiest, then it gets a little more difficult as we go along... kinda like the levels in Tetris.

First, find a flavor you like. Choco-banana-mint-cheesecake-smore whatever. Whew, that was easy. Now get past the shiny wrapper and flip the bar over.

We are once again going to look at calories, fat, carbs, and protein. First make sure the bar has calories that fit in your 'diet budget', and then take a look at the individual numbers. You might be surprised to see how high some of these numbers are. Here is an example of a Clif Bar nutrition that I randomly pulled. 6 grams of fat isn't bad... that's fine for a meal, and the protein is good at 11 grams, but the problem here is the sugar content. 20 grams! Whoa, how did the the elves fit 20 grams in this thing? Do you know what other bars have about 20 grams of sugar? You may have heard of them...

Anybody care for a regular Hershey's or Reese's Peanut Butter Cups?

So, the moral of this story is to watch your sugar in these bars :) Sugar as you may have read in a prior FFF post, spikes your insulin, and can lead to fat gain. Look for bars that are low in sugar, and higher in fiber, which will make you feel more full, and slow down digestion. I'd say 5 grams of fiber or more is a good number to shoot for. Brands that I like that do this include Lara Bars, and some of the Luna and South Beach Bars. While some of their fat content is high, they are from natural sources (think like nuts or natural oils) and the carbs are equaled out with the fiber. Ingredients are important, which we'll tackle next.

Without going too crazy in depth, if you can't say the words, they are probably not good for you. Remember those commercials with the kids reading the ice cream ingredients? It's like that :) If you see partial hydrogenated anything, put it on the shelf. This is trans-fat, and is unhealthy no matter how you look at it. Your body can't break it down. It's like digesting a tin can, and you're not a goat :) Unfortunately, many of the bars have these kinds of oils, because they prolong shelf life, which can last up to years. It's a preservative. Just something to think about.

So are all protein bars bad? No of course not. Just like any other food, they can be part of a balanced, healthy lifestyle, especially when you're in a rush. Just make sure to read the labels, watch the sugar and funny words, and make sure the ingredients are as natural as possible. I know for a fact that VeggieGirl loves Lara Bars, and they are both organic and vegan. Dawn actually put up a review about some bars before, (see... men can remember things) and I would trust her with my health and tastebuds. Heck, her and I are taste-buds... get it haha :)

Sorry for the semi-rushed post, but that's all I have this week. A special thanks to everyone who has been supportive to me reaching 50 posts... I feel like everyone is really routing for me, like Rudy. If I'm not around to comment on your blogs, it's because I don't have a computer this weekend. The rest of my week is hectic as I travel to North Carolina, and then packing up my life and moving back to mom and dad in Albany. Just bear with me, and I'll be back to visiting and leaving funny comments as best I can :) Enjoy your weekend guys!

I Got My PBBB Yeah You Know Me

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Posted by Adam | Posted in , , | Posted on Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Well, let me just start that I am more than blown away from my Pumpkin Brownie post. We're talking like Twister style blown away. As of the time of this post, I have 46 comments! 46! That's a brand new high for Baking with Dynamite, and it's sooo close to 50. 50 is going to be my new goal, and I figure with a little more hard work, and maybe a joke or five, I can totally reach that. Thanks to everyone who supported my crazy concoction... and also to those who are still friends with a 'non-chocolate'-aholic :)

Well, since the last post took quite the amount of creative juices from my brain (not to scale), I'm now heading back to something simple, tried, and true. When it comes to family desserts, I have about 4 or 5 completely committed to memory. I've blogged about a couple of them before, such as here, here, or here... and then I have this one. Do you have any baked recipes that you can whip up without any consultation? I bet you guys have quite a few.

Since I have started blogging, the word Banana Bread has now become synonymous with my super fun dancing colleague, VeggieGirl. She always makes creative, delicious, "not yo mama's" banana bread. She recently had this post for Peanut Butter Banana Bread, and it got me thinking... Well, I do love PB and Banana sandwiches, so let's give this a go :)
I decided to take a recipe that my mother and I have been using for years, and I love it because I can just eyeball things. It's not a finicky recipe, so if you're not exact, it's not too big of a deal.

With me moving back home in two weeks, I thought this would be a great idea to use up whatever baking supplies I have left. When you have limited travel space, sometimes that extra flour and sugar just has to get used, right? Oh, the things I must do sometimes :)


Peanut Butter Banana Bread
Recipe by Mom

-1 1/2 cups AP flour
-1/2 cup sugar
-1 tsp baking soda
-1/4 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp cinnamon
-2 ripe beyond repair bananas, mashed
-1 1/2 tsp vanilla
-1 egg
-1 tbsp canola oil
-1/2 cup juice (apple, orange, whatever you think would work)
-1/2 cup (or more) peanut butter (optional)


Preheat your oven to 350*. Set up the center rack, and grease a standard loaf pan.


In a large bowl, mix the flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together.


In a medium bowl, mix the bananas, vanilla, egg, oil, juice, and peanut butter together, until it is an evenly mixed, sweet smelling mushy mass.


Add the wet banana ingredients to the dry team, and stir until combined together. Pour into the greased loaf pan, and bake for ~40-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack. Peanut butter is optional in this recipe, and so is the shredded coconut I put on top.

And that's it guys, the easiest banana bread recipe you might ever find. It might not actually be the best you've ever had, but you have all the ingredients, and you can do whatever you want to it. Raisins, nuts, chips, whatever. When it comes to using juice, I like it because it gives a subtle flavor besides banana to the bread, and also sweetens it a bit without it being overly sicky sweet. Just use whatever you have on hand, or go with milk if you don't have any.

Few last notes my friends (not in a creepy McCain voice), remember to check out VeggieGirls site if you haven't already... but chances are, if you are a reader here, you know who she is :) Also, thanks for commenting on BwD, and for being cool cats, especially with the comments. The FFF post comments had me dying... seriously I hurt my stomach hurt :) 50 comments, here we come... soon.

This is what happens when you eat too much banana bread

Fitness Fun Friday #14

35

Posted by Adam | Posted in , | Posted on Friday, October 10, 2008

Ok, today is a going to be an easy going, laughing type day. Usually on Friday, I like everyone to learn at least one thing that'll carry on over into the weekend. Ya know, like a little gobstopper you can take for the road. So far, I've been having a blast balancing science with fun, and it hasn't been as difficult as keeping an elephant and a goose on a teeter totter :) Maybe some of you don't even realize you are learning, which is the ultimate goal of a teacher, right?

Well, today... the rules are getting broken. I don't know whether it's the weather (say that 5 times fast), or the fact that I've been listening to Poison alot lately... but today, I'm going to be science-less. Yup. Low on the science, high on the fun shenanigans.

Today is all about Gym Etiquette... idea courtesy of Tony at Olive Juice. He's a super cool cat with artistic skills that makes Monet blush, which is why he deserves the name "Big Ton, creator of delicious food". Ok, I'm the only one that probably calls him that.

While there are other lists like this on the Internet... I haven't checked but I imagine... this is going to be an original one by me. These are things I have seen and experienced over the years. All of these are personal opinions, but I bet we can agree on at least a couple :) So, for the first timer walking into the gym... please remember to:
  • Treat the gym like it's your home - clean up after yourself - I can't tell you how many times I put other people's weights away. They can be 20 lb weights, or 120 lb ones, and it doesn't matter how big the person is. I think if you are going to use effort to work out, then use a little more to clean up.
  • If you want to scream, keep it at home - Am I saying you can't exert effort? Of course not... lifting is an intense exercise, and you need to breathe correctly and everything. We all just don't need you to sound like a girl a New Kids concert.
  • Be friendly, and ask first, touch second - Ha this isn't about going out on a date, but about using gym equipment. The gym is like seats in a movie theater in the way that some stuff gets "saved" while they are gone for a second. If you aren't sure if someone is using something, ask first... it's more than likely you can use it, or 'work in with them'... share equipment.
  • Don't worry about what other people are doing - Just do what you would like to do. So someone is squatting 900 lbs? It's ok, let them do what they want. The gym is about bettering yourself, and worrying about others is not going to affect your personal goals or dreams. Numero uno is number one here :)
  • Don't walk in front of people who are training - This is HUGE. Here's a quick story: I am doing shoulder presses in front of a mirror. I am using alot of weight, and I need the mirror so I don't knock myself in the head. So I do a couple, and go... for... that lasssst one.... and some kid walks in front of me - Oh my goodness, I can't see!!, someone... anyone... Fear sets in... and I could've gotten really hurt. Moral of the story... just wait a second or two, then walk by... or just walk behind me.
  • Does this gym have a swimming pool? Oh that's a bench - If you left something a sweaty mess, please clean it up. This kind of goes with the first bullet :)
  • And finally - Get rid of the cell phone - Now, I know this might ruffle some feathers... I mean what if something important happens while you are gone? Johnny might need to get picked up from the game, or maybe you're the first one to find out that John Stamos is doing a book signing down the street... but, maybe, just maybe... it can wait. If you're in the gym for one hour a few times a week... this should be your time. Time totally devoted to you. No one should be able to contact you, and I think that's a good thing. It's relaxing, it's personal. Life can wait for the other 23 hours of the day, right?

So that's a couple of things I've learned in the past few years. I hope you smiled a least a few times :) Wait a minute, is it even possible to not smile, during a BwD post? I won't even try to hide it, I love the gym. Unless something really exciting or original is happening, it's pretty much the highlight of my day. It's probably not that big deal to you yet, but maybe one day :) Feel free to share any fun stories you have... I'm sure there's bound to be a couple. Have a fantastic weekend guys, and remember... you're awesome.

Treadmill

Rut Filling with Pumpkin Goodness

50

Posted by Adam | Posted in , , | Posted on Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Ok, well last post I mentioned a baking rut. My brain has been swimming with school work, plane ticket prices, and trying to save money for a trip I have to take in a few weeks. This weekend is my last free one in the month of October, and after that I'm more booked than the Encyclopedia Brown or Goosebumps. So I needed to snap, crackle, and pop my way out of it. What to do?

A birthday? Say what? Oh man, I almost forgot! Whew, that was a close one. Thank you so very much Facebook for letting me kno... errrr reinforcing the idea that a good friend of mine's birthday is coming up. I swear that little stalker network has saved me countless times :)

So, my rut has been broken, or filled. For the past few years, yours truely has been deemed the birthday dessert maker. Yup, for my close circle of friends, I ask, and they shall recieve, in sugar and delicious form. Do I get the answer of "Oh, Adam, dude... I don't care, make something up"? Yup, I get it every single time. It's a good thing I'm a left handed, right brained, creative Pisces man. Some people might get flustered at something like that :)

So my buddy loves two things when it comes to dessert. Pumpkin and coffee. Weird combo? Maybe... but it can be done. I went for a walk to clear my head, and it came to me, and a pumpkin headed spirit appeared in the street...

"You shall make Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownies with Pecans" it said. Ok, not really, but that's the idea I came up with. Problem number two came though... I don't really like brownies. Gasp* Please don't stone me... I love other things! Cinnamon, vanilla, fruit, jam, nuts... just not really chocolate. Is it ok to not hide anymore?

So I had to enlist the help of a Portugese pastry chef. This is a no brainer for me. If you want to get your roof fixed, you call a roofer, not a dog groomer, right? Exactly. So after much collaboration and laughter, (probably more of the latter the way we talk) we agreed on a recipe that is similar to this one by Ina Garten, but I changed it a bit. A 13x18 size pan is an absolute monster, so I roughly quartered the recipe and made up a few other things. Much thanks to Clumbsy Cookie, for being an awesome, and Ina, for giving me a base recipe. 3 way high five, good buddies :)

Pecan Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake Brownies
A concoction of Ina, Rita, and Adam


For the Pumpkin Cheesecake:

-8oz low fat cream cheese
-1/4 cup sugar

-1 egg yolk

-1 cup pumpkin, (approx.)
-1/2 tsp cinnamon

-1/2 tsp ginger
-pinch of cloves, or two :)


For the Brownie Layer:
-
4 oz unsalted butter

-9 oz chopped up chocolate, separated into two 4 oz parts (I used bittersweet)

-1 egg and 1 egg white

-1 tbsp espresso powder (it helped keep us up at night)

-2 tsp vanilla
-3/4 cup sugar
-1/2 cup flour

-1/4 tsp salt

-1 tsp baking powder

-Chopped pecans (however much you want)


Preheat your oven to 350*.
Prepare a 9x9 pan lined with foil, and sprayed with cooking spray. In a medium bowl, first make the cream cheese filling. Mix the cream cheese and sugar together, much like using a "creaming method" with either a wooden spoon or hand mixer. Add the egg yolk, and canned pumpkin, a tablespoon at a time. The pumpkin has a lot of moisture, so you want the mix to be thicker, and not really liquidy. Just use your best judgment. It should be a loose batter. Add the spices to the batter, and mix until it all comes together evenly. Set aside.

In a small bowl, melt the butter and one half of your chopped chocolate together. I microwave for 30 seconds and slowly stir. Let this mixture cool once it's evenly melted and glossy.


In a large bowl mix the dry ingredients together: The sugar, flour, espresso powder, baking powder, and salt.

Once the chocolate mix has cooled slightly, carefully add the eggs (watch out for scrambled eggs), and mix well. Add the vanilla, and then add all of this into the dry flour mix bowl. Stir and mix well. Add in the rest of the chopped chocolate and pecans, and pour this batter into the prepared pan, spreading it evenly with a spatula.


Take your cream cheese mix and drop tablespoon fulls on top of the batter. Try to leave spaces between the spots where you place it. With a knife or blade, drive through the batter to "marbleize" it, and make it look like a beautiful pumpkin brownie mosaic. Awesome job.
Bake for about 45 minutes. The cheesecake addition makes these brownies require a longer baking time than usual. Try not to over bake, check with the toothpick test, and cool on a wire rack.

Well, these brownies disappeared as fast as a teenage girl on a friday night. I don't know whether it was the party atmosphere, or the fact that I'm not a terrible baker (I did get help on this one), but they were devoured. Maybe it's the fall flavor, maybe it's the chocolate, maybe it was the uh, beverage consumption. Whatever the case, I suggest you try these out. If you have a favorite brownie recipe, give that a shot too :)

Fitness Fun Fridays #13

38

Posted by Adam | Posted in , | Posted on Friday, October 03, 2008

And it's Friday again, raddid tat-tat-tat (drumming fingers on the desk Andy from The Office style). Happy Fridays Big Tuna's, I had a pretty cool week, mostly because when it comes to graduation requirements... I am done. Finished. There was a time when I thought treating 250 different people would be a lot... but ya know it wasn't that bad :) Thanks for all the positive feedback I got last week (and some very, very interesting stories) and I hope you all had a great week too.

So I was thinking about what to dive into this week, and a couple of friends of mine were asking me about protein stuff in clinic. I was answering to the best of my knowledge and then it hit me... we talked about protein in the past, and how many of you might not be getting enough... so what about

Protein powders? Now I was waiting to see if Biden-Palin would touch on this in their debate, but I guess they ran out of time. So, let's leave it up to me then :)

After talking to a good buddy of mine across the Atlantic last night, I realized that some people might not know what protein powders are. Maybe you've seen them, on the shelf, all brightly colored, screaming look at me, and having slogans written like "gain massive muscle in 2 hours" with Hulk Hogan or someone on it. Listen, I'll let you in on a tip... I would say that men eat protein powder more than women... and men are visual people. There I said it. I just sold out my gender. We like brightly colored, shiny, loud things. That's why the plastic jugs look like this. Should you judge a protein powder by it's outside... absolutely not.

So let's get to the big questions... So what is this stuff? Do you need to take it? Will it make you huge?

Well protein powders are exactly what the words imply... they are protein in a dry, storable, powder form. Add some type of liquid, mix it together, and eat/drink it. It's that easy :) While every powder is different, especially on taste... each scoop has close to the same properties, based on it's protein source.

Whoa, protein source? Isn't protein... just like, protein?

Nope. Protein powder can come from a variety of foods. The most popular is whey protein, by far... and it comes from whey, which is a byproduct of milk manufacturing. Over the past few years, I am shocked at the spike in it's prices, but then again, milk has gone up too right? Whey protein is great for muscle building, and is a powder of choice among weight lifters, due to the fact it is very fast absorption. When you finish a workout and your muscles are hungry for nutrients, you want a fast acting protein to help you recover. That's why it gets the Adam stamp of approval.

Powders also come from sources of: brown rice, soy, casein, egg, and a few others. You can definitely find one to fit any allergic, vegan, or dietary restrictions. Whenever you consider a powder though, you want to look at the label... here's an example of one.

Now I like this one. Let's walk through it together. From my other posts, you might know what to look at already... we have our Big three, Carbs, Fat, and Protein, right? Well we want a protein high in protein, and low in the other two. So if you look at the values, this one is really nice. 23g of protein with only one gram of sugar, and 1.5 grams of fat. Nice, dude. So basically when you take this, you're getting all protein without any other stuff. That means there's no hidden calories or junk in it. Some of you may want to be weary of aspartame, fake sweeteners, sodium levels, and weird science word ingredients. Make sure to check for those.

I compare it to having too many drinks with friends. It's easy to drink your calories and forget about them right? It's kind of like... Whoa, I had 6 beers already, whoops. Well a protein shake high in sugar or fat could cause you to gain unwanted weight too. So always, always, always check out labels.

Now let's tackle the other questions... this is important.

Protein powders are not steroids. While I love Arnold and Franco (the latter is a chiro), they had what I call "special help". Looking that way without steroids is almost impossible, I say almost because genetics can vary. Protein powder is a supplement, and is exactly what it says... ground up dry protein. Therefore, it's safe to say you will not get huge-normus from it, and not wake up one day with your shirts all being too small :) On a personal note, I've taken powders for about 5 years now, and I am by no means a huge guy (my facebook friends can probably back me up). So, not to worry, it is not illegal, and will not hurt you, I promise. I haven't even yelled at someone this week, so there's no roid rage here :)

Do you need to take it? Well, that's a personal question. Because a supplement should help you in your diet, so ask yourself if you are getting enough protein. Back in my protein post, we talked about getting about 1.8g/kg of bodyweight. If you are far off, I would consider it. Remember that protein does many functions, including:
  • Increasing satiety and decreasing hunger
  • Burns calories during digestion to process it
  • Builds muscle, hair, nails, etc
  • Excess has a very hard time converting to fat
There's a whole bunch of other reasons too, but I recommend re-reading that prior post, or just doing a quick research on your own. I like protein powder around my training because it's given me great results, and it's a cheap source of food... food is expensive when you eat 6-8 times a day :)

Alright, I think that's going to be it for today. I hope I perked many an interest, and if you want to email me certain questions, go right ahead, I actually have some free time now :) Other random stuff...
  • I've been in a baking rut recently, but I'll try to fix it this weekend
  • I had to wear a jacket yesterday because of the cold
  • Buckwheat is delicious
  • 51 days until I'm a chiropractor
  • You guys are cool cats
  • I need a good cornbread recipe for next weekend
Yup, random... I told you so. Happy weekend everyone!
Protein