10/28: Meals and Fitness for the week

Spent our Saturday night with Harry Potter. NBD.

Zoo halloween 7

(Random: does anyone say “Harry Potter” in a high-pitched voice with a British accent? Me too)

When I got home from work, the Pilot had so kindly made dinner for the family:

Renees 2

(he called Renee’s Organic Oven and went to pick it up. Their gluten-free slice and salad is one of my favorite things ever)

and then we decided to hit up the Halloween at the Zoo event as something fun to do before Liv’s bedtime.

Apparently everyone else in Tucson had the same idea:


it was PACKED, and the line/crowds wrapped and winded from the actual zoo entrance to the street. We made a mental note to get there earlier next year. The good news is that we’re members, so we didn’t have to wait quite as long, but when we got inside it was Liv’s bedtime exactly. We figured we could walk around for a little and then head home so she could crash out.

She absolutely loved it. 

The animals in the zoo were not out for the event, but then entire property was decorated with lights:

Zoo halloween 4

and each exhibit had a theme, 

Zoo halloween 9

from movies we all know and love to classic children’s stories.

Zoo halloween 6

Each little area was a trick-or-treating station and the characters (mostly local high school students) passed out candy to the kids, who were all dressed up in their Halloween costumes. It’s a safe place for kids to trick-or-treat and we all had a lot of fun walking around and checking out all of the different areas. 

Zoo halloween 8

(Shout out to Lauren, who is lending us her BabyHawk. I left mine at the Greek Festival and looks like it’s gone forever)

Last night, while the Pilot worked on his Master’s stuff, I thought it would be a good idea to start a new book: The Handmaid’s Tale. I’d heard a lot about it, and decided to start reading a little while before bed.. it SUCKED me in. I had to force myself to shut it down so I’d get enough sleep to wake up for this morning’s run, which didn’t end up happening anyway 😉 My body was exhausted from teaching yesterday, so the Pilot woke up with Liv and I slept in. It was glorious, and I’ll probably end up skipping this week’s long run since it’s a more intense teaching week.

Here’s what this week’s tentative fitness plan looks like:

Sunday: OFF

Monday: Combo HIIT and steady state @ 50% = 40 minutes

Tuesday: Weights circuit (testing out the November workout!)

Wednesday: Teach Zumba

Thursday: Teach Buff Booty

Friday: OFF

Saturday: Teach World Beat, Zumba and Bootcamp <—- whew!

Cranberry ballz 2

Meal and snack ideas:

Cranberry-orange amazeballs (my new favorite flavor)

Vegetable nori rolls or sushi salad

Butternut squash soup

Apple-cranberry salmon salad

Zucchini pasta with turkey bolognese

Pumpkin cashew coconut curry


So what’s on the fitness and meal plan this week? Trying any new recipes or workouts? What are you reading right now?

Have a very happy Sunday and I’ll see ya later!



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  1. Erica { EricaDHouse.com } on October 28, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    I’ve been working on trying out 5-6 new recipes this weekend to share on the blog. I finally had success with spaghetti squash! Not sure what I’ll be doing for workouts. I think I may start planning my week ahead more like you do!

  2. Carrie on October 28, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    I’m reading “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.” It’s actually pretty entertaining. We rented the movie Friday night and the movie didn’t follow the book/it was awful/I fell asleep half way through. But so far the book is good! Before that, I read “Gone Girl,” which was good too.

  3. Megan S. on October 28, 2012 at 1:38 pm

    I’ve started reading “The Same Kind of Different As Me” – it’s interesting so far and I’ve heard good things about it!

  4. Tayla on October 28, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    Hey Gina!
    Wow these cranberry calls looks amazing! I can see how you get the name amazeballz 😉 I will be trying them for sure, and maybe even a great Thanksgiving treat for everyone! Thank You!

  5. Kaila @healthyhelperblog! on October 28, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    Awww what a fun outing for you guys and liv! Looks like a perfect place for a baby…lots of stimulating lights and sound!

  6. Michele on October 28, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    can’t wait for the November workout- the October one was a-mazing! I haven’t been that sore in a very, very long time 🙂

    And, gorgeous family, as always!

  7. Jess on October 28, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    A Handmaid’s Tale is one of my favorites. Enjoy!

  8. Danica @ It's Progression on October 28, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    Today is turning into an unplanned rest day for me too–slept in and I’m still sore from recent workouts!
    I just finished reading “Hungry” for the model Crystal Renn…it was really interesting!

  9. Hillary on October 28, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    The Handmaid’s Tale is one of my very favorite books ever; Margaret Atwood is a genius!

  10. Elizabeth M. on October 28, 2012 at 2:48 pm

    I found a recipe for Thai red curry stew that I can’t wait to try! I am also going to make some almond butter kale chips a too. Can’t wait!

  11. Carrie R. on October 28, 2012 at 2:56 pm

    Halloween at the Zoo, too cute!!!

    I am reading “Reading Lolita in Tehran”…it’s been out a long time but I just picked up a copy!

    I am walking more…my back is getting better, and the weather is actually almost cool here in Mia….! I look forward to going back to Zumba, etc. soon…i’m definitely doing turkey meatballs this week, maybe with quinoa or pita. Grilled veggies too… 🙂

  12. Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie on October 28, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    Omg what an amazing zoo event! I’m so glad you guys got to enjoy! This week I hope to slowly up my running miles so I can work up to a 10k!

  13. AmyW on October 28, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    I don’t see crossfit in your schedule this week? Are you giving up on that? Just wondering if you were going to make it back. Pumpkin festival looks like fun!

  14. Shari on October 28, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    I’m in the middle of Charity Shumway’s TEN GIRLS TO WATCH and absolutely love it. One of the best books I’ve read all year!

  15. Lisa on October 28, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    I’m reading Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn, its very intense, but a great read! I love those kinds of activities, Olivia probably really enjoyed it! I totally say Harry Potter in a British accent too, sometimes I even say other words in an accent without realizing it and then people think I have an accent, its really awkward to explain myself after.

  16. Robyn (GirlonRaw) on October 28, 2012 at 3:15 pm

    Those amazeballs sounds like a winning flavour combination – must try!

    Oh and how funny, we are Masters widow twins (um does that make sense). Pat’s been doing his for 2 years and just started up again after summer break. Can’t.Wait.For.It.To.Be.Over!

    Enjoy the last of your weekend!

  17. Yaara on October 28, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    That zoo fest looks like so much fun!! I’m just curious for your HIIT workout for Monday–what ratio are you doing? Lately when I do HIITs on the treadmill I try to do 30 sec hard/ 1-min easy for a total of 15 min and then 15 min of steady state. I was just curious what your ratio was. Also have you heard of this Visual Impact Cardio program? I’ve seen it advertised online and looks really interesting. I was thinking of maybe downloading it–but $47 seems a bit pricey. It’s probably stuff you already know–but the trainer lays out how to strategically combine HIIT with steady state along with appropriate timing techniques etc, fasted cardio, etc.. for maximum fat-loss. I was wondering if you’d heard of it.
    Here’s the link:

  18. Molly on October 28, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    I read The Handmaid’s Tale in college for a women’s lit course. Loved, loved, loved it. I am reading Promised, the third book in the Birthmarked trilogy. If you enjoyed the premise of Handmaid’s Tale, you will love the Birthmarked trilogy. It’s set in the future and a big part of the plot is reproduction and the issues this new world is having with keeping the race alive. I really highly recommend it. The first book is Birthmarked, then Prized, and lastly Promised.

  19. Cara @ I Don't Believe in Diets on October 28, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    Sounds like such a great first halloween. Also I love the meal ideas!

  20. char eats greens on October 28, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    I made a butternut squash soup the other day and it’s almost gone now. I kept it really simple, but it was so delicious! I’m thinking more soups are in the future for this week…especially as I have to admit that the weather is finally getting cold in my area. That totally calls for soup all week long!

  21. Emily on October 28, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    Margaret Atwood is amazing. The Handmaid’s Tale is one of my favorite books of all time. I just finished The Blind Assassin, which won the Booker Prize, and is another one of her best works. I am super into Augusten Burroughs right now (Running with Scissors, Dry, Magical Thinking), and have just started Caitlin Moran’s How to Be a Woman, which is great, too.

  22. Negar M on October 28, 2012 at 5:24 pm

    Harry Potter in a high pitched voice with a British accent <— totally necessary. Do you know of any other way to say that name?

    Your husband is working on his master's degree? Wowza, my husband did that while he was in the AF…..I thought it was a cute lil hobby. Eighteen months later, he separated and moved into a crazy job in finance (bringing me to the firm with him).

    I'm not complaining one bit: being an Air Force wife wasn't something I was attached to, and working for the world's largest asset manager with my best friend isn't too shabby….but higher education can be addicting.

    Before you know it, the pilot will want to get a PhD, wear suede jackets, and teach philosophy at a small state college on the east coast. Slippery slope….. 😉

  23. Theresa on October 28, 2012 at 6:05 pm

    You inspired me to try Zumba…and I must say I’m addicted!!! I couldn’t believe how fun that workout is. I’m going to start reading “The Happiness Project.” I’ve read great things about it, and can’t wait to start on it.

  24. Averie @ Averie Cooks on October 28, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    Ive been baking things with cranberries all weekend – I love your little amazeaballs! I need to try that flavor.

    Fun pics from the weekend. Love the Harry Potter stuff. Fun!

    Have a great week, Gina!

  25. Danielle@cleanfoodcreativefitness on October 28, 2012 at 6:30 pm

    Looks like such a fun night! I love Halloween themed things! Alway so fun! Looks like some awesome meals and workouts for the week!

  26. Brooke (beinvivacious.blogspot.com) on October 28, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    Aw. THis looks so fun. Thanks for sharing. I love halloween!!

  27. Lena on October 28, 2012 at 8:40 pm

    Ahh so happy for all the book recos! Looks like I’ll be home much of this week b/c of the dreaded frankenstorm, so I’m going to write some titles down in case I get through/dislike the books I have on deck. Because of said storm, I’m preparing a bunch of protein pancakes, pumpkin chili and veggie “meat”balls tonight so I’ll have stuff ready to go in case the power goes out!

  28. RachelG on October 28, 2012 at 8:51 pm

    I had to jump right down to the comments section…I absolutely LOVE the Handmaid’s Tale! We read it in my literary theory class and I fell in love! How creepy is it??! Keep reading anything by Atwood…she is a genius!

  29. Abby A on October 28, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    I’m reading The Dark Glamour, which is the second book of 666 Park Avenue! It’s a great light, but well written, read!!

  30. Bek @ Crave on October 29, 2012 at 4:12 am

    Haha I do that Harry Potter high, english voice thing! 😛

  31. Ali on October 29, 2012 at 7:00 am

    The Handmaid’s Tale is my favourite book!!! I also love Oryx and Crake by Atwood. She’s an awesome Canadian writer, whoo Canada! The zoo looks super fun too!

    This week I’ll be trying amazeballs! I picked up some Sun Warrior while I was on vacation in a bigger city, so they’ll be legit Gina-style 🙂

  32. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on October 29, 2012 at 8:09 am

    Halloween at the zoo looks like so much fun – I wish I had something like that in my town when I was a kid! Actually I think I would still have fun even if I went now. 😛

    This week I’m trying CrossFit for the first time – I’m so excited!

  33. Sonal on October 29, 2012 at 8:12 am

    That halloween event looked like so much fun! 🙂 That’s a great place for trick or treating for the kids. This week I should be waking up early for a walk/run before work and doing some yoga and planks in the afternoons. Healthy meals and snacks include some brocolli soup made yesterday (yum!), healthy hummus and hopefully some granola that will be made soon. Right now i’m reading Tina Fey’s Bossypants 🙂 It is so funny!

  34. Beks on October 29, 2012 at 9:18 am

    I loved “The Handmaid’s Tale.” So messed up, yet so intriguing. The movie was decent, too (Love Natasha Richardson!).

    Right now, I’m reading “Gone Girl,” which is a bit slower read for me than for everyone else, it seems, I just started “Flowers in the Attic,” despite how messed up I’ve heard it is, and “Eat Clean Recharged.” I’m always reading fifty books at once, so this is relatively slow for me. Loving my Kindle, though. 😀

  35. Beverly Aragon on October 29, 2012 at 10:23 am

    When our little pug, Mia, was still with us, I spoke to her in a British accent all the time. Yes, the hubby thinks I’m totally crazy! I’m reading Blackberry Winter by Sarah Jio and am SUCKED in just like I was with her other two books.

  36. Amanda on October 29, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    I loved The Handmaid’s Tale!! I could not put it down. Enjoy!

  37. Alissa on October 30, 2012 at 8:05 am

    My reading list at the moment has two books on it, The Beauty Detox Solution by Kimberly Snyder and Bossypants by Tina Fey. I just tried an amazing new vegetarian recipe yesterday in honor of meatless Monday’s and it passed the husband test 🙂 Now I am off to continue packing, we are moving with the Navy and I love reading your back articles when I get overwhelmed. I am new to military life and it helps!

  38. Rebecca on October 30, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    I teach The Handmaid’s Tale every year (to high school students) and most of them love it. The movie is terrible, though– don’t bother!

    And my meals this week are all pumpkin since I bought two giant ones and need to use up what I didn’t freeze…so far there’s been soup, pumpkin pie, pumpkin monkey bread, and I don’t know what else!

  39. Samantha on October 30, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    How crazy is that book?!?!

  40. Rachel Boller - Busy Mama on October 31, 2012 at 10:46 am

    OMG I totally say Harry Potter (HARRY POTTAH) in a Dumbledore voice in my head EVERY TIME. I can’t not! My book of the week isn’t that exciting, it’s a personal development book called “Stop Saying Your Fine” and normally these totally bore me but this one… the author has some total sass going on so I love it. Anyone who tells me to get my life together while calling me a dumb a** has my heart. 😉

  41. Cara on November 4, 2012 at 8:40 am

    ‘ARRY POTTAH! …yes, yes, I understand the voice thing. hah!

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