Nov 30, 2010

Workouts for those who get bored quickly: Post #1

If your like me, you get bored after running straight for 3 miles or are on the elliptical for more than 20 minutes. I have been searching and compiling workouts to help break my rut for quite some time and wanted to share! Many people will give up on working out as the holiday season begins because they think they have no time. You CAN dedicate 45 minutes to a workout each day, I promise!
I did this workout a few days ago and absolutely love it because it targets almost every muscle group and also involves some cardio. If you ever have any questions about the workouts or would like for me to customize one for you, email me :)

GET OUT OF YOUR RUT: WORKOUT #1

Treadmill:
2 minute jog (6.0 mph)
6 minute run (6.5 mph)
2 minute jog (6.0 mph)

Weights:
Lunge with Biceps Curl (3 reps of 20)
Push-ups (3 reps 15)
Pilates Roll-up (3 reps of 10)

Treadmill:
1 minute at 6.0 incline and 4.0 mph
3 minutes at 6.0 incline and 5.2 mph
1 minute at 6.0 incline and 4.0 mph

Weights:
Skater Lunge (3 Reps of 20)
Triceps Dip (3 reps of 12)
Biker Crunches (3 reps of 20)

Treadmill:
Repeat treadmill round 2

Weights:
Step-ups with 15 lb weights (3 reps of 20)
Lateral Flys with 8 lb weight (3 reps of 15)
Plank x 1 minute (3 reps)

"Reps" means that you will repeat that exercise three times. Each weights section is to be repeated 3 times. If you are short on time, make it two! If you are stronger than I, then UP your weight.

Pictures of the above mentioned exercises:


Lunge with Biceps Curl
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Pilates Roll-Up
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Triceps Dip

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Biker Crunches

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Lateral Flys
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Plank

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Skater Lunge
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Nov 29, 2010

Holiday Decor


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I resisted the urge to decorate back in October until the day after Thanksgiving. Something about decorating for the holidays makes me smile on the inside. I still have a few things to tidy up, including decorating the tree.

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Nov 26, 2010

Black Friday Giveaway!

It's now officially Christmas season! To celebrate, you have the chance to win some recycled holiday cards!

WIN, WIN, WIN: a 12 pack of recycled holiday cards from:

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Some of your choices:

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To enter:
1.) Follow via bloglovin' OR google

Extra entry:
1.) Tweet this giveaway
"I entered to win recycled holiday cards over on @sparklingsteps' blog! http://bit.ly/aS1hyD"

Nov 25, 2010

Happy Turkey Day to All!

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I will be spending my day in the ER today. Don't feel bad for me though, we are having a huge thanksgiving feast!

Thankful:
  1. for my friends and family
  2. for my little furball, Tweezers
  3. for having a job I look forward to going to every day
  4. for being healthy
What are you thankful for?

Nov 24, 2010

Inspiration Board

My inspiration board sits pretty in my closet (I am so thankful to have a spacious walk in closet) hanging on my wall. I frequently view the photographs to put together my outfits when I am feeling uninspired.

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Colorful lips

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Outfit Inspiration

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Most wanted trends: Sequins & Faux Fur
Note: The beloved gold sequin skirt from J.Crew that I have been coveting for weeks. (far left)

Nov 23, 2010

Killer Workouts in 30 minutes: Post #1

I have a few different workouts that I have collected over the years that get you sweating and gasping for air by 30 minutes. I have always preferred a harder workout if it meant I would be done quicker. They also just make you feel like you've done more.

Treadmill- Hills

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Now get to the gym and get sweatin' before the holidays :)

Nov 22, 2010

Comfy Cozy

As I was walking through Costco last week I noticed an amazing piece of furniture. I have been searching for an entertainment console to complete my bedroom renovation for about 6 months now. I have finally found perfection! A combination of a warm fireplace and entertainment. Perfect for winter, perfect for bedtime and perfect for me.
The console I purchased cannot be purchased online and I therefore do not have a photo of it. It somewhat resembles picture #1.

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Nov 19, 2010

Giveaway: Recycled Holiday Cards

I have been searching for hours (I know it's ridiculous) for the best holiday cards on Etsy for the holidays this year. Best part is that you will have the opportunity to grab some as well! :)

Giveaway presented to you by:

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Eco-friendly paper products, go green!

I'm pretty set on these "Woodland Festival" cards for the holidays this year.

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...and these "little oak tree" Christmas gift tags

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Up for grabs in this giveaway are these adorable Retro Patterned Reindeer Cards

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How to enter:

1.) Make sure you are a follower via google, bloglovin' OR subscribe via email and let me know :)

You also have an opportunity to enter for one additional entry:

1.) Tweet this giveaway with my twitter name included (@sparklingsteps) and the URL
OR
Retweet my tweets regarding the giveaway

Easy peasy! Let the holiday festivities begin.

Nov 18, 2010

Newsies Thursday

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Image via WeHeartIt


The fact that River Island is finally selling items and shipping to the US via ASOS made my week

Still trying to figure out Boutiques.com that launched yesterday, but so far I'm diggin' it

100% set on purchasing this for my little buddy for Christmas this year

These are ridiculous

I will be organizing myself with this next year






Nov 17, 2010

Healthy Mac N' Cheese


I fell in love with mac n' cheese when I had my first box of Kraft when I was probably about 2 years old. Since then I have been searching for the perfect healthy mac n' cheese recipe. I HAVE FOUND IT! The cheese sauce is actually made with a garlic/onion puree and greek yogurt. You will be surprised as to how good it really is!

Recipe Here.

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Before the Oven

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After the Oven

The key to this recipe is Rocco's Secret Weapon which does not use a creamy cheese sauce. The sauce is actually made from a puree of garlic and onions which you will combine with greek yogurt for the sauce. It is delightful.

Nov 16, 2010

Clothing Rack: My favorite items

I have always wanted a vintage clothing rack in my bedroom to display my current favorite items. Much to my dismay, Ebay was selling them for a few hundred dollars so I opted for this very affordable one from Bed, Bath and Beyond. I am thinking of recreating it with some paint--future DIY project?

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The Sequin cardigan top was the most amazing piece I have ever discovered at the salvation army, $15! I also just purchased my red blazer there as well.

Nov 15, 2010

DIY: Hallway Hutch

I am doing a hallway makeover and started with this hutch that I found at a salvation army for a ridiculous price of $20. I imagined it with a paint makeover and immediately threw it into my shopping cart.

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I went to my nearest Home Depot and bought white paint (flat) and texture paint (can be found at any craft store). I bought the texture paint so that the piece of furniture would look old but with a refinished touch.

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I bought this door knobs from Anthropologie a few months ago and haven't had the opportunity to use them until now.
I will post my hallway makeover in a few days!

Nov 13, 2010

Winner!

Winner of the Janelle Haskin's giveaway!



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#66: Katie - Fashion Frugality

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Nov 12, 2010

Pump it up

For all of those exercise fanatics out there and to those that want to start- Bodypump is ADDICTING. I have done bodypump classes here and there but never actually stuck with it. I have now been doing it for about 3 weeks and I feel like a new woman!
For you Bodypump virgins- here's a definition (via Gold's gym) of what bodypump is:

BODYPUMP is the original barbell class that strengthens your entire body. This 60-minute workout challenges all your major muscle groups by using the best weight-room exercises like squats, presses, lifts and curls. Great music, awesome instructors and your choice of weight inspire you to get the results you came for - and fast!

This class is as challenging as you want it to be, since you get to choose your weights.
Currently my weights are:
Warm-up 17.5 lbs.
Squats 22.5 lbs
Chest 12.5 lbs
Back 22.5 lbs
Triceps 12.5 lbs
Biceps 17.5
Lunges 17.5
Shoulders 17.5

All set-up!
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Have you ever tried Bodypump?!

Nov 11, 2010

Almond Biscotti


With the holiday quickly approaching I figured I would whip up a batch of almond biscotti. Let me tell you a little secret-I have NEVER made these prior to this and was happy to see that they were extremely easy to put together!

You can find the recipe I used here (via Smitten Kitchen): Almond Biscotti

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Roll your batter in half into two separate logs (as shown)

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Whip 1 egg white and brush along top and sides of logs

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Take the logs out of the oven and then precede to cut the logs and place them back on to baking sheet

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Now make your favorite cup of joe and enjoy!

Nov 10, 2010

Holiday gift ideas for the Man in your life

First off, I have collected your responses and these are the results!
65% of my readers would rather I talk about fashion related news VS. exercise/nutrition related posts
71% of readers would rather I show Fashion related DIY projects VS home improvement
71% WOULD be interested in booty related fitness exercises

I will take this into consideration ;)

Did you enter my giveaway yet?
PS. Huge sale on my old blog, check it out!

Now on to what to get your man for the holidays!


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Vintage Field Army Watch, J. Crew, $150

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The Pacific (highly recommended by me!), $43

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Cobra iRadar- Radar Detector for iPhone and iPod Touch, $99

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