Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Fueling By Zero with Octane Fitness

Hey friends! Now that it's finally starting to sink in that my volleyball career is over, and despite it being a reason to celebrate, it is also bitter-sweet and makes me pretty nostalgic. I am, however, so excited to make my own schedule, workouts, and direct my focus on projects that I haven't had time for. One of the things I'm most excited for is that I can now exercise the way I know is best for me and won't further hurt my back and knees and every other body part that's been injured in recent years. I'm giving myself some time to recover and do as much low-impact exercise as I can to get back in good health.

As a result of finally having time to do what I am passionate about, I was able to attend an event in the city hosted by Octane Fitness last week, and it was a ton of fun! It was awesome getting familiar with the brand, and their new machine, the Zero Runner, in particular. It coincidentally is exactly something that would provide a huge benefit to me in this stage of fitness, as it is a workout and cross-training tool that offers zero impact running! Talk about how helpful that would be for my broken down body...a real "game changer"! The Zero Runner allows the athelte to simulate a running movement in place (which is great for focusing on technique) and offers an incredible cardio workout without the stress of pounding on the pavement or dealing with less that ideal running conditions outside. I got to test it out, and once I got the hang of it, it was a lot more fun than the elliptical and definitely more challenging, because there is no motor (it is sooo quiet) and I was moving the machine entirely with my own body!

It was great hearing what Larry Schmidt, longtime runner, marathoner, and Ironman participant, along with Olympian and five-time NCAA champion Carrie Tollefson had to say about the importance of embracing recovery, the evolution towards exercising not longer but smarter, and strategies for dealing with injury. Larry, who has run over 80 marathons, 17 ultra-marathons, and 5 ironman triathlons, is now able to log so many more miles with the help of the Zero Runner and most importantly, without the pain that the high impact of conventional running causes him. Carrie, who is also a mom and used the machine to stay fit while pregnant, touched upon the benefit that active recovery and cross-training can provide (the Zero Runner offers strength and flexibility training with its unique CROSS CiRCUIT program), and how quality technique as opposed to logging "junk miles" is crucial to staying healthy in the long run. As athletes, it is inevitable that we will face setbacks and injuries, but it is how we deal with them that will determine the outcome and future successes. Hopefully as more people begin to realize this, they will prioritize their wellbeing and the health of their athletes before anything else. With tools like the Zero Runner, active recovery and effective cross-training for injury prevention become so much more accessible, and not to mention trackable...you can even trace your running gait to make sure that you are getting quality miles in! The best part is, the benefits can be experienced by everyone, ranging from beginner to elite athlete, expectant mother to injured runner, running enthusiast, or somewhere in between. I had such a great time learning about the new technologies that are available with the Zero Runner, including an app that syncs to your machine for real-time feedback on your stride. This will allow runners to improve workout quality and efficiency and I can't wait to see the Zero Runner continue to grow in popularity! I was bummed when I didn't win the machine in the raffle at the event, but who knows, if my future dream job is right around the corner, I will be able to treat myself! You seriously get so much bang for your buck (or $3,299 bucks to be exact) and our bodies will thank us for the investment.

If you want to check out more, visit the Zero Runner page on the Octane Fitness website, or their Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook accounts! Fitfluential will also be hosting a Twitter chat about the Zero Runner on December 2nd, so stay tuned and join in the fun to learn even more!

Looking forward to hearing you weigh in on what you think of this awesome new fitness tool :)
This post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of Octane Fitness.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Pumpkin Spice Protein Muffins

Happy Monday everyone!!

As part of my "get shit done" campaign for this week, and my greater comeback to the world of blogging, I'm sharing with you a very exciting recipe! It's perfect for the upcoming holiday, and one that won't derail you from your goals, or feel like you're missing out on any dessert action :) These make a great travel snack too, if you are journeying to visit family and don't want to waste time stopping at a mediocre rest stop, or if you get hungry and happen to be stuck in traffic. Just saying...trust me when I say these will come in handy :)

I have basically spent these past couple months of volleyball season perfecting this recipe, since it is the only thing I have really worked on in my kitchen lately, as you can see from my sad lack of blog posts. My team and my family (who visited last weekend which and it was incredible) have served as guinea pigs, and hopefully would agree that this is the best version!

Enjoy, and as always please provide me with some feedback when you make these! Blow up my social media sites with comments and pictures and I will be a happy camper :)

Pumpkin Spice Protein Muffins
Pumpkin Spice Protein Muffins

Pumpkin Spice Protein Muffins

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 heaping cup almond or cashew flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/3 cup vanilla protein powder (flavorless or vanilla)
  • 1/2 cup flaxseed meal
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice 
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)
  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl, and whisk together.
  3. Crack eggs, separating egg whites into their own bowl, and adding yolks into the bowl with the dry ingredients.
  4. Into the bowl with the egg yolks and dry ingredients, add the honey, pumpkin puree, coconut oil, and vanilla exract, and blend well with a hand blender or mixer until smooth.
  5. Whisk the egg whites by hand (or preferably with a mixer) until peaks form. Add into the bowl with the batter, and mix with a spatula until the egg whites are fully integrated. The batter should feel on the thick side, yet light and fluffy.
  6. Grease muffin tins with butter or choice of oil (I use reusable silicone tins so I don't need to and it is awesome) and fill until each is about 3/4 full.
  7. Bake for about 30 minutes, then turn off and let cool in the oven with the door open.
  8. Enjoy!! 
Pumpkin Spice Protein Muffins

What are your plans for the holiday weekend? I want to hear about them, and whatever they are, I hope they include these muffins ;)

Please connect with me! 


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