Tough Mudder

Hey y’all! I know i’ve been MIA for the past couple of weeks. I’ve been busy decorating my new beach house on the Jersey shore! But stay tuned I have lots of goodies to catch up on. I quickly want to show you what I signed up for!

The Tough Mudder!!! This is an EXTREME race. It’s a 12 mile run with 17 different obstacles along the way. Such as jumping walls, carrying tires, tight ropes, running through fire, and much more!! I’m super excited about it! Only 20% of the race is women so i’m definitely very motivated! It’s in November so I have 6 months to train for it.

Bring it on Tough Mudder!!!

(P.S) I hope everyone had a nice weekend =)

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New Challenges

Happy Monday everyone! I hope you all started the week off nicely.

Since my semester is over and I’m currently jobless, I have A LOT of spare time on my hands. As we all know this can be a good thing and can also be a bad thing. First off, I am incredibly bored and I’m beginning to run out of “errands” to complete. But on the other hand, I also have a lot of time to relax and think to myself! So today I decided to make a list of goals for myself that I would like to accomplish!

1) Get accepted into New York University – I’ve always wanted to go there, but in high school I didn’t have the grades. Now that I’m almost a junior in college and have a 3.8 GPA I was thinking that I would apply as a transfer student and hopefully get in!! I LOVE the City! I’m only 20 minutes away so I get to go very frequently! I can definitely see myself living there someday. (I also plan to take a trip to the PB&Co restaurant soon so stay posted :-) )

2) Get more variety into my diet – Yes I do enjoy eating healthy but I find myself eating a lot of the same things over and over again. (Ex. apples, wraps, sandwiches) Mostly a lot of easy stuff! So I hope to cook a little more and switch up what I eat to get a variety of nutrients!

3) Become more confident with my personal choices – I come from a very Italian family. Italians LOVE to eat. Don’t get me wrong, I love to eat too! But I come from a large family of food pushers. My grandma even used to come over my house every morning when I was little and made me eat a boston cream donut from DD’s. So when I make healthy food choices today and choose to exercise frequently, I sometimes get ridiculed a lot. Sometimes I get .. “Your going running AGAIN?!”. Or “Ohhhh come on?! You know you want to split the cake with me! Just eat it, you know you want too!”. Yes, I eat cake, cookies, and ice cream just I eat them in moderation, and sometimes, I really just don’t want the damn cake. I can usually handle this, but sometimes it feels like it’s never ending. So I definitely want to gain the strength to finally say, “This is my choice to live a healthy lifestyle, if you don’t agree with it, then oh well”.

4) Do more volunteer work – My mom is the most unselfish person in the entire world. She is incredibly giving and charitable and has always taught me to be the same way. Currently, my family sponsors a gorilla named Coco and a Native American child in New Mexico. Every time I volunteer myself somewhere like a soup kitchen or a hospital, I always feel like I’m making a difference. So I would definitely like to be more active in my community to help other people!

5) Run more benefit runs – Last year I ran 2 5k’s. One was the Tunnel to Towers run in NYC for the firemen who passed away on 9/11, and the other one I ran was the Susan Komen Breast Cancer run. After those two races I can’t even describe to you how overwhelmed with happiness I was, I felt so accomplished! I would definitely like to do those two runs again and a bunch more! Maybe even start running longer races like a 10K or work my way up to a half marathon or something =).

6) Learn how to drive a manual car - This is something I’ve always wanted to learn how to do! Both of my brothers have manual cars and I’m always so fascinated with how it works. Before I left for Italy, my parents agreed to let me buy myself a new car when I got home. So now that I’m home, I bought myself a new car =) and it’s MANUAL!! I’m really excited to get it. It won’t be here until the end of June because I had to special order it. So my main goal at the moment is to be able to drive it home from the dealership by myself (and not have to have one of my brothers drive it for me haha).

So those are my challenges at the moment, and I already started to work on them! Today I drove around my brothers car for a few hours to get the hang of a stick shift. I think I did really well! I get the logistics of it, now I just have to practice! ALSO, I started my NYU application!

First, to start my goal oriented day, I needed a good bfast.

Southwestern scrambled eggs w/ a WW english muffin, Justin’s honey PB, and raspberry preserves.

Lunch was also fabulous!

Flat-Out wrap w/ turkey, feta cheese, avocado, red bell pepper, and mushrooms. Some Fage as well!

Growing up I was always accustomed to the same cheeses. The Italian norm – mozzarella, ricotta, and parmesan. Also, the most common, American cheese. While I was in Italy (ironically enough) is when I developed a taste for other types of cheeses that weren’t my typical Italian staples. This is because my 8 other roommates that I lived with encouraged me to try different things! While I was there I tried Brie, Camembert, some other weird ones that I can’t remember, and my new all time fav, FETA! Ladies and gentlemen, I am now not only a carboholic, I’m a Fetaholic! (As you can tell by the huge chunks in my wrap).

Later on in the day after dominating the art of a manual transmission, I fueled up for another pilates class. The class is at 6:30 which is around the time I usually eat dinner so I try not to eat a huge meal before I go (I don’t exercise well on a full stomach) so I cut my dinner in half (half before my class and half after). Before my class I had this….

(Sorry forgot to take a picture of it)

I thought this was so good! The sesame tahini sauce was really good. Also, I wasn’t aware that it had tofu in it, which I’ve only tried once before. I really enjoyed it so I definitely think I’m going to go pick some up next time I go to the store. Does anyone recommend any good brands of tofu out there?!

After my pilates class (which continues to kick my butt), I put together the ultimate recovery smoothie! ..

1C bloobs, Chobani, 1 scoop of french vanilla designer whey PP, and Ice = Super yummy and refreshing!

Well I’m officially exhausted! Time to chill out for the rest of the night. Tomorrow I think I’ll be going DTS (Jersey slang for “Down the Shore”) to my beach house. So i’m pretty sure i’ll be blogging from there =)

Arrivederci!

Has anyone set any goals for themselves to accomplish? Even the smallest of goals counts!

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Mamma Dukes

Happy mother’s day everyone!! I hope you all get to spend some good quality time with your families!

This is my mamma ….

and I wouldn’t be who I am today without her. She has taught me to be a strong, independent, woman that doesn’t let other people bring me down. She’s not only my mom, she’s one of my best friends. I can go to her for ANYTHING! So with this said, Mom, I love you with all my heart!!

Now on to the goodies!

Saturday I woke up to an awesome breakfast/ pre workout fuel.

French Meadow Bakery Hemp Seed Bagel with raspberry preserves

This was my first time trying these bagels and I loved them! Not only did they taste like a real, doughy bagel, they pack a powerful nutrition punch! 13g of fiber, 19g of protein, and 7g of healthy fats! I highly recommend trying this bagel, they have other varieties as well!!

After breakfast was inhaled, I went to my first pilates class back in the States. I go to this really small studio that I absolutely love called Longevity. I love it just because they are so personable. They email you the class schedules, they always know your name, the instructors text message you, and there is never more than 4 people per class. Getting back into the swing of it is a lot harder than I thought it was going to be. Not going for 4 months definitely took a toll on my body. Time to regain the strength! I am definitely feeling the soreness today.

When I got home I ate this number for lunch.

La Tortilla Factory WW wrap with tuna, pickles, mustard, and veggies along side some greek yogurt.

(Sorry my wrap broke, too much filling!)

Before going to hang out with some of my friends that just came back from college that I haven’t seen since I left, I had a quick, dinner of Salmon, brown rice cranberry pilaf with a half a plate of broccoli! I always try to fill half my plate with vegetables, a quarter with a starch, and the other quarter of the plate with protein. Does anyone else do this?!

This definitely didn’t last me. By the time I got home I was hungry again so I had 2 kiwi’s and an unpictured apple.

I love when the summer season starts! Not only because I love warm weather, but because summer has so many seasonal fruits to pick from!

This weekend eventhough I am not a mom yet (Which is a good thing because I’m only turning 20), I certainly felt like one!

Meet my niece Elizabeth …

The 2.5 year old ball of CONSTANT energy/ Love of my life

My brother and my sister in law had a wedding to attend up in Syracuse NY this weekend so I had the responsibility to take care of her. I ofcourse ALWAYS spend a lot of time with my niece, but I never spent a full 48 hours with her without her parents around. I give mom’s and dad’s around the world a lot of credit! It’s a lot of work!! haha. So today for mothers day we’ll be going to Six Flags Wild Safari to show her all of the animals! I can’t wait! But first, we needed to have some breakfast.

This is what I had

Kashi Go Lean w/ skim milk and loads of Cinella!! (pronounced CHIN-ELLA, Italian for cinnamon)

Elizabeth on the otherhand refused to eat cereal, so she ate a Kashi blueberry waffle instead while watching our favorite movie of all time, FINDING NEMO!

After the Safari we’ll be dropping her off back at my brothers house and then were off to a nice Mother’s Day Dinner at my mom’s favorite restaurant called Sergio’s. Can you guess what kind of food it is? haha Italian ofcourse! I’m so sick of Italian food at this point, especially now that I know Italian food in the States isn’t anything like it is in Italy. It’s ok though, it’s my mom’s special day and she deserves it!!

I’ll post about it domani!! ( tomorrow)

Arrivederci!

Does anyone have any fun plans for Mother’s Day?!

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Ciao Bloggies!!

I’m back from Italy!! I have to say it’s a weird feeling to be back in the USA, it’s a totally different world over there! While I was away I definitely have to say there were soooo many things I missed while I was gone. To start off, I obviously missed my friends and family but since this is a food blog I think I’ll just get to the point ;-)

1) Oatmeal ….. In Rome it doesn’t exist. When I realized this I made my mom send me some over haha. This is because Italians aren’t really breakfast people (I know, it’s a sin). I guess this is because they eat massive 5 course dinners!

2) Peanut butter ….. this is also extremely hard to find over there. This is because as we Americans love PB, Italians love Nutella (trust me I love Nutella too)! They did have peanut butter in the international section of the grocery store, but it tasted awful! Nothing like my Justin’s nut butters =(

3) Hummus …. They also had this in the international section but it wasn’t even refrigerated… which was the first bad sign. Then I tried it, also tasted horrible. THEN the next morning I woke up incredibly nauseous … ENOUGH SAID!

4) Veggie Burgers ….. I could only find one type throughout the entire city and it tasted like a hockey puck! Apparently there aren’t a lot of vegetarians in Italy!! When I was buying these everyone was staring at me and giving me dirty looks (Although Italy is known for staring, its awful and very uncomfortable).

5) Anything Kashi …… I live by Kashi. If I could work for any company in the entire world, it would be Kashi! I have probably tried every single one of their products. There cereals and granola bars are amazing!! Speaking of granola bars, Italy only had special k =( and I’m certainly not a special K fan (It might be low calorie, but it has no fiber or any of that good stuff!).

6) Pickles ….. It’s an addiction! I can literally go through a jar a day. They did have pickles over there, but they were very tiny and tasted very different.

7) Wraps ….. Italians just eat bread. I can’t really blame them though, while I was there I’ve never seen so many different types of bread. AND THEY WERE ALL SOOOO GOOD!!!

8) Middle Eastern Food …. just in general! I love my pita, hummus, tabboule, babaganoush, and the occasional falafel!

So can you guys guess what my first meal was when I got home?!

Middle eastern food with the biffles! (Clare)

Pita, Hummus, Tabboule, Olives, and a half eaten Falafel!

This restaurant is also a hookah place so we decided to treat ourselves. I’ve only done it once in my entire life but I thought Id give it a go forgetting that It was actually tobacco. We got the watermelon flavor!

Well that’s all I got for now! Its been a super busy week getting situated and used to my usual lifestyle. I’ll be back with more goodies soon =)

Arrivederci!

You don’t know what you got until it’s gone!! Have you ever been away for a short/long amount of time and realized you really miss something? What was it?!

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