Blue Apron Meals

Recently a Twitter friend @ShelbyMarie turned me on to Blue Apron – a company that provides you with all the ingredients that you need to make a delicious meal in exactly the right proportions. As a subscriber, you get multiple recipes and precisely measured meal ingredients literally delivered to your door. Sounds pretty cool, right? I agree.

katekatebear blue apron box

I just got my first box and it had three meals in it:

  • Pan-roasted bratwurst with sweet & sour cabbage and crispy potatoes
  • Stir-fried chicken pad Thai with baby tatsoi and spicy peanut sauce
  • Salmon caesar salad

Um…YUM!

katekatebear blue apron box

katekatebear blue apron box

Being a huge organization nerd, I love how the Blue Apron team puts everything in the box for you. Everything is carefully measured and in its own little package with a clearly labeled sticker to tell you what it is. The box is also insulated with cooling pieces so, if you’re like me and you have to get everything delivered to work, everything stays good in the box for a while.

Since we were trying something new and different with this program, I wanted to try the most new/different of the three options – the bratwurst dish! I’ve made brats before, but the cabbage was very intriguing to me with caramelized sugar!

katekatebear blue apron bratwurst meal

Because everything was already measured, all I really needed was the pots, pans and oven (and salt/pepper/olive oil)! I made the dish with ease (minus the sugar piece…that I’m still learning how to do correctly) and voila! Just like the picture!

katekatebear blue apron meal

For my first night trying, it was definitely cool! I’m really interested in how the program will work for us and what kind of meals we’ll get. Right now, it seems like a great way to have tasty, fresh food when you can’t always make it to the grocery store AND to have options but select ones so you’re not just staring into the pantry for an hour figuring out what to make! I’ll keep everyone updated on how it progresses…

Next week already looks exciting!

blue apron menu february

In the meantime, I wanted to make sure I shared the recipe I made last night! You may not have the ingredients in pouches, but it’s a good one to have on hand (if only for the DELICIOUS potatoes)!

Pan-roasted Bratwurst with Cabbage & Potatoes 

Original recipe: Blue Apron
Cooking needs: Deep pot, small pan, baking sheet/pan

  • 2 bratwurst
  • 1 bunch parsley (picked from stems)
  • 1lb russet potatoes (chopped into 1″ squares)
  • 1/2 head red cabbage (thinly chop)
  • 1/4 C sugar
  • 2 T spice mix (
  • 2 T red wine vinegar
  • 2 T whole grain mustard (for garnish)
  • Olive oil
  • Salt & pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 500 degrees F.

In your large pot, bring 2C of water to a boil and add chopped potatoes. Cook for 5-6 minutes.

Drain and spread potatoes onto baking sheet. Sprinkle lightly with olive oil and salt/pepper and toss to coat. Cook in oven for approx 25 minutes.

While the potatoes are cooking, you can make the cabbage – start by adding the sugar to your large pot. Heat the sugar on medium-high for approx 3-4 minutes, not stirring. The sugar will begin to melt and thicken as it heats, turning light amber in color. Continue cooking until it becomes a deep reddish-brown. (The caramel will continue to cook in the pan, so be ready to begin the next step almost immediately.)

Add the cabbage to the same pot and stir. Season with salt, pepper and spice mix. Stir until mixed thoroughly. Cook 22-25 minutes.

While the potatoes and cabbage cook, cook your brats! Heat a small dash of olive oil in your pan until hot. Add your bratwursts and cook approx 2-4 minutes per side or until golden brown.

Remove cabbage from heat and stir in red wine vinegar and parsley.

Garnish with mustard and ENJOY!

 

[Workout] Four easy Bosu moves

As most of us experience, morning alarms aren’t always effective…aka sometimes the snooze button is just a little too tempting. While I try not to make sleeping in a regular practice, sometimes it happens. On those days, I hate missing my full morning workout BUT I’ve come up with a few quick toning moves to do when I can’t fit in a full session – I call them “better than nothing” workouts :)

Earlier this week, I created a quick four-move better than nothing workout. It was easy to do these few moves before jumping in the shower and getting ready for work!


This week’s workout: Four Easy Bosu Ball moves
Muscles worked: Full body!
Courtesy of: @katekatebear (aka me)
Needs: Bosu ball

katekatebear bosu ball workout

Side plank dips: 
Start with your body turned to one side and your feet one of top of the other on the top of the bosu ball. Lift yourself up into a side plank on your forearm. In this position, lift your core up and lower it down. Then switch sides!
For variation, you can put your top foot in front of the other on the ball OR put your top foot on the ball and your other knee down on the ground. 

Uneven elevated push-ups: 
Start in a push-up position with one hand on the center of the ball and one hand on the ground. Perform 10 push-ups, then switch arms on top of the ball.
For variation, you can place your knees on the ground.

Plank rocks (forward/back): 
Place both feet in the center on top of the ball. Bring yourself up into a plank with your feet balancing on the ball, then start by rocking yourself forward (keeping your feet/toes on the ball) and then back (bending/pushing your heels backward).

Elevated reverse lunges: 
Standing up in front of the bosu, step back (carefully!) in the center of the bosu behind you. Stay in this position, and perform 10 lunges – making sure to keep your front knee over your ankle. Switch to the other side.

Again, it takes more time to explain these workout moves than it does to actually do them :) It’s a quick way to get in a workout for all your muscle groups!

You’ll never regret a workout! 

Join the ride for Pammy!

Most of you have met my friend Annie (at least through my posts…). She’s actually one of my bridesmaids!

annie truax run for pamAnnie and I met a few years ago when we worked together. I got her to (aka made her) join Tone It Up and we’ve basically been great friends ever since. She’s an amazing inspiration to me not only as a killer athlete who puts in her ALL, but also as an amazingly kind and generous person who is always there to support you and put a smile on your face.

Unfortunately, this little ray of sunshine had to go through a dark time almost two years ago when her mom, Pam, passed away from stage 4 lung cancer. It’s unbelievably heartbreaking to think about…however, there’s something much more powerful than that sadness. Strength. I watched my friend go through a tragedy and come out stronger than ever. Annie found Team in Training, which is an organization that simultaneously trains athletes and raises money to support the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in the fight against blood cancers. She’s been kicking a** and taking names…running roads all over the world, all in the name of her mom. I unfortunately didn’t get to know her too well, but I know Pammy would be so proud. <3 We are ALL proud.

annietruax support at Fitbloggin

I’m excited to be joining Annie for a special ride at our new local spot, Rev Cycle Studio, on January 24! For a minimum donation of $35, you can join for an amazing 90 minute cycle with the REV team in the fight against cancer! All donations will support the Team in Training foundation, as Annie will be honoring what would have been her mom’s 65th birthday by running the Rock n Roll 1/2 Marathon in New Orleans on February 2nd!

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER!

rev rides for pammy
5:15 – 5:30 pm: Meet at Rev to sign in for class & get bike
5:30- 7:00 pm: Endurance ride with Esther Collinetti, REV founder (& incredible spin instructor!)
7:00 – 7:15 pm: Cool down + stretch
7:15 – 7:30 pm: Head to happy hour! (yes, there’s HH involved too!)
COST: $35 (100% going to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society)
To register for the class you will need to create an account if you haven’t visited the studio yet (you’re in for a treat!), purchase a 2 class series, then reserve a bike.

 

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER!

Please visit Annie’s fundraising page for more information on Team in Training, an organization that simultaneously trains athletes and raises money to support the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in the fight against blood cancers.

[Wedding] The Bridesmaids

I am so incredibly excited for our wedding day…I’m even more excited that I get to celebrate it with some of the most amazing ladies I’ve ever met! 

Rachel
My one and only sister! What can I say….I’ve known her for a while. haha

katekatebear sister

Emma
Me and this lovely lady met when I moved to Baltimore about 5 years ago. We worked together at Port Discovery then took a quick hiatus (and decided to become roommates because we missed each other SO much haha) and now work together again at National Aquarium!

katekatebear emmahayden

Molly
Molly and I met actually through Tone It Up and were part of the BMOREtoned original crew! Since then, our friendship has blossomed and (although she left me to live in her amazing bay-front house in Annapolis – can you feel the jealousy haha) we’re excited to BOTH be in each others weddings this year! That’s right, Molly is getting married in May too!

katekatebear mbakes2123

Annie
I met this little firecracker, Annie, when we worked together at Planit. I basically brainwashed her into joining our Tone It Up BMOREtoned group and we’ve been close ever since. We have big plans for the fitness industry...but more on that at a later date hehe 

katekatebear annietruax

Alli
This girl is literally one of my oldest friends (as in known the longest…she’s not like 100 years old! haha). We started as little wee buddies back in New Jersey. Ah those were the days…we’ve come a long way since then!

katekatebear alli color run

Best (aka Catey)
Catey and I were college roommates at University of Miami for the entire four years I was there. We did the whole ‘started out as strangers’ thing freshman year and couldn’t shake each other after that! She eventually joined (followed…creepily stalked…?) me in Baltimore and I’m so happy to have her back as a neighbor!

katekatebear catey

All in all, I have some amazing bridesmaids! 

Weekly menu plan

We all know planning is the typically the easiest way to make sure things go…well…to plan. Obviously, I did not plan that sentence out properly. haha 

Anyway…in this new year, Tom and I are striving to be better at meal planning. We always start out strong during the week and by Wednesday/Thursday, we just want pizza…

Taking a page from my Tone It Up trainers & my TIU nutrition plan, we did our big grocery store haul today to get ready for the week ahead. We needed to stock up on some basics, but I took a few menu ideas with me so I made sure I didn’t wander too far (down the frozen pizza aisle...).

So we have the food. Now we just have to make healthy meals with it…seems easy, right? Wrong. Tom and I both typically work incredibly long days and we’re beat when we get home. If I didn’t workout in the morning, I add on more time pre-dinner for that and all of a sudden it’s 8:00 or 9:00 pm and neither of us want to make a decision about what to eat…let alone who’s going to make it.

I’m taking a tip from the awesome blogger Raluca, of What Would Gwyneth Do, and making a weekly menu plan. It’s such a great idea, not only to keep us accountable, but to keep us creative. We get to make up the menu today and see it play out over the week!

So here we go…keep in mind I tend to eat 5-6 mini meals per day (like mid-morning yogurt and almonds or afternoon veggies and hummus). Below I’m just trying to keep track lunch/dinner…

meal-planningSunday
Lunch: Kale powerhouse salad with slice of broccoli quiche
Dinner: Baked crab cakes with green beans

Monday: 
Lunch: Lemon chicken with green beans
Dinner: Shrimp with green peppers and quinoa

Tuesday:
Lunch: Chicken sausage  wheat wrap with brussel sprouts and quinoa
Dinner: Salmon with polenta and spinach

Wednesday:
Lunch: Soup with brussel sprouts
Dinner: Quinoa turkey meatballs with carrots and sweet potato

Thursday
Lunch: Quinoa turkey meatball wrap with kale
Dinner: Grilled chicken with broccoli

Friday
Lunch: Loaded sweet potato (like mega loaded haha)
Dinner: Fish tacos

Saturday
Lunch: Turkey chipolte chili 
Dinner: Out for dinner (planning a special afternoon with my bridesmaids, so we’ll figure this one out later :))

 

And there you have it. Now, let’s see if we can stick to the plan…

What helps you eat healthy during a busy week? Do you have simple go-to recipes? Make a menu plan? I’d love to hear your tips!