Monday, April 18, 2016

Product Review: Ben and Jerry's Nondairy Coffee Caramel Fudge Ice Cream




I am an ice cream lover and enthusiast. Could I resist trying out the new non-dairy Ben and Jerry's? No, I could not. I previously tried the Non-Dairy Chocolate Fudge Brownie and while it was pretty good, I wouldn't go out of my way to have it. 

This flavor, though, I enjoyed much more! It had a good coffee flavor with sweet swirls of caramel and big chunks of chocolate. It wasn't too many chunks to distract from the creaminess, but enough to add a little variety. As for the almond milk aspect, I really couldn't tell a difference from dairy ice cream. It had a good texture and no weird flavors. An ice cream win in my book!


 Whether you're lactose intolerant, vegan, or just an ice cream lover, this ice cream is worth a try!


Caramel Swirls 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Protein Fluff!

I've recently become addicted to protein fluff and I've been eating it almost daily.

What is protein fluff?


It's fluffy, sweet protein bliss. Above, I topped it with half a Lenny and Larry's cookie, g2g bar (see my review: G2G Protein Bar Review), cookie dough Gbutter (see my review: GButter Review) and sprinkles, of course.

Many times when I post a picture of my protein fluff bowl, people ask me for the recipe, so here it is!

Ingredients:

1 scoop protein powder (I've been using Quest brand)
1 banana
Pinch of xanthan gum (I don't measure)
About 3-4 cups of ice (I don't measure)
Just enough water to make it blendable

So it's more of an idea than a recipe.

Method:

Blend. Blend. Blend. And blend some more.

With my little ninja, it takes for-ev-er. I'm not sure how long it would take with a more powerful blender but if you're thinking that it didn't work and that it's too icy, then there's a very good chance you just need to keep blending. It seems like it will never fluff up and than all of sudden, it turns into fluffy creamy goodness. Then I blend a little longer to get all the ice chunks out, add my toppings and voila!

Enjoy!

Monday, April 11, 2016

Running: The Feeding Frenzy 5k 2016


This past Saturday, April 9, 2016, I ran in my second 5k since my spinal cord injury. Of course the weather decided to be cold and windy! I ran in the same 5k in 2015 and remember wearing shorts and a t-shirt at 8:30 in the morning! I bundled up but I was still a little apprehensive. Even though I've run several 5ks, I still get anxious and nervous every time!


My mom and I walked around pre-race trying to stay somewhat warm and anxiously awaiting the start. Finally, they called the runners to the start line. I started my music on my phone and *thought* I got my nike running app ready to go. I heavily rely on my app to keep pace and meet my own expectations of myself. The race started but my app did not. I decided to keep pace with a woman in front of me and we continued together throughout the whole race. Sometimes she was a little ahead and sometimes I was. As we reached the last quarter mile, I sprinted hard! The finish line was in sight and I didn't know what my time was!

As I crossed, I saw the clock said 21:51! They had a little station to print out your results. My pace was 7:02, almost my best ever, pre or post injury. My time for the same race last year was 22:24. I was thrilled with my results. Thank goodness for other runners to keep pace with!




Needless to say, on my next run back at home, my pace was much slower. C'est la vie. I find I usually run faster in races. They have such a great energy!

Do you prefer running in races or running on your own?

I like both because I like the introspective, alone time running on my own but I also like to set personal records and feel the energy and camaraderie of people who enjoy running!


Feeding Frenzy Logo from http://carolinarunner.com/2015/04/05/results-of-the-2015-feeding-frenzy-5k-april-11-2015-intimidators-stadium-kannapolis-nc/

Monday, April 4, 2016

Hiking: Crabtree Falls

Crabtree Falls, NC



This is a nice 3.5 mile loop hike off the Blue Ridge Parkway. Midway through the hike, you're treated to the view of these lovely falls. It's considered strenuous but wasn't too hard. It goes by quickly and I really enjoy it. I love hikes with waterfalls, too. It's cooler down by the waterfalls. There's a campground by the trailhead as well. This a hike I like to do after going to the Altapass Orchards in North Carolina. It's not too far from there and makes a nice day in the NC mountains. 

AltaPass Orchards, NC


There is a bridge across the creek that gives you this view of the falls. 


I hope you enjoy this hike if you give it a try!

Product Review G2G Bars

Have you heard that protein bars are bad for you and full of sugar? While that can be true in some cases, I believe that protein bars can be a convenient and nutritious snack option if you choose wisely. They can also taste delicious. G2G bars are fairly new (at least to me) and I was excited to try them despite their higher calorie load (298).

They have four varieties: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Almond Chocolate Chip, Peanut Butter and Fruit, Almond and Fruit. They have no refined sugar; they're sweetened with honey and brown rice syrup. They have whey protein, peanuts and almonds respectively and oats, so the ingredients sound pretty respectable. 

The Taste and Texture Test

Taste: 10/10 for all of them 

They're so simple, they pretty much taste exactly like their components. I love peanut butter and almond butter so a 70g bar that tastes like peanut butter is 10/10 for me!

Texture: 9/10

Chewy, in a good way. They have to be kept in the fridge because they have no preservatives so you need to warm it up so it's nice and soft and chewy. If you try it cold, it's a bit too hard. Nothing a quick 10 seconds in the microwave can't handle!

Nutritional Facts:
298 calories
14f
25c
18p

They are so worth those extra calories plus they are a bit bigger than your typical protein bar. Eat up!