Breakfast salad

Hey everyone!! Happy Friday! Anything fun going on this weekend?? 😀

I have to warn you in advance that my eats have been a little hodge podge today. Definitely more random snackage than official meals.

This morning, I got up bright and early to go to the beautiful Dr. Phillips YMCA. The gym was super nice before, but since it’s gone through a remodel, it’s ridiculously gorgeous. Another reason why I wish we could live in Orlando! I did 45 minutes on the elliptical watching Good Morning America on the little flat-screen elliptical TV, munched half an unpictured nanner, then took an hour pilates class.

Pilates was glorious- I haven’t taken a class since Tucson! It felt nice to work my abbies and was very GC 😀

After my workout sesh, I hit up Whole Foods, bought some goodies and every Thai coconut in the house, and then proceeded to have salad for bfast.


I wanted something raw, savory, and veggie-filled so a salad seemed like the way to go. It had romaine, mushrooms (MUSHROOM! MUSHROOM!), kalamata olives, tamaters, health salad (which was like a slaw dressed with lemon juice and dill) and cracked wheat tabbouli salad. So incredibly random and quite satisfying.

After my feast, I went back to my aunt’s, packed up and hit the road back to V-town since I have a training appointment in a little while.

It was so nice to have my roadtrip buddy with me!


Her hair is so long and curly right now! She looks like a baby polar bear 😀

Road trip snack:


(If you haven’t tried that flavor yet, definitely give it a whirl. It’s my new favorite!)

I finished the book on CD I was listening to (and cried at the end because I’m a giant sap) and made it safe and sound back to Valdosta.

Since my juicer hasn’t been used in a month, I decided to whip up some Cullen juice and added some kale stems (leftover from the kale chips):


(I used about 1/3 carrot bag and all of the beet)

With a glass straw:


After I finished the juice, I was starvin’ Marvin. I took a dip into the almond butter jar with a spoon and realized that’s not what I was hungry for, and had the realization that I hadn’t had hardly any protein today and that’s why I felt so ravenous.

A smoothie totally fixed that problem:


1 cup almond milk, a bunch of frozen organic strawberries, 1 pack Vega Berry Whole Food Health Optimizer, a pack of Stevia (which made it a little too sweet), a sprinkle of bee pollen and a pinch of sea salt.

Muuuuuch better.

I’m off to train funny quotes lady!!! I missed her so much! Then the pilot and I are going out to dinner and to see Couples Retreat with some friends 😀



Questions and Answers: I get a lot of questions via the blog and email regarding whether or not to eat before a workout. A lot of professionals in the fitness world have mixed opinions on this, and it wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I found what works best for me.

Here’s the thing: generally our bodies will burn carbs first, then fat and then protein. If we eat before we work out, we have more carbs to burn before our body can get to the fat-burning phase. However, if you’re hungry when you get to the gym, you’re not going to work out as efficiently and will probably cut your workout time or intensity short of what you’d do if you had some pre-workout fuel. You’d burn less calories and approximately the same amount of fat as if you’d eaten something and worked out a little harder.

So usually the questions are this:

  1. Am I hungry?? If the answer is yes, then I do the obvious and have a small snack before working out
  2. What kind of exercise am I going to do? If I’m going to do a breezy walk or elliptical sesh, then I usually don’t eat anything beforehand. If I’m going to teach/take an aerobics class, run (for longer than 45 minutes), or do cardio and weights in the same session, I’ll definitely have a snack
  3. Whether or not I decide to have a snack also depends on the time of day. If I have a big or late meal the night before, I’m usually not hungry enough to eat before working out. If it’s later in the afternoon, I’ll almost always need a snack for a pre-workout energy boost.

If you do choose to have a snack before a workout, the best snacks are a mixed of smart carbs, lean proteins and healthy fats and around 100-200 calories. Some ideas: Ezekiel or banana with almond butter, greek yogurt and berries, small fruit smoothie, apple and cheese, 2 egg whites and 1/2 wheat pita, 1/2 bar (Larabar, Luna bar, etc.). For more snack ideas, check out this page.

Happy training!

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  1. michelle on October 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    aww she does look like a baby polar bear. do your babies get mad when you leave them?

    • Fitnessista on October 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm

      haha no. they like anyone who will give them attention, so they usually forget about me pretty fast 😀

  2. Shari B. on October 9, 2009 at 5:40 pm

    I have looked everywhere for a Tropical Fruit Larabar for weeks now! No luck yet… 🙁 I’m so jealous!

    aww little Bella! I just want to give her a squeeze… SO CUTE!

  3. Jenny on October 9, 2009 at 5:44 pm

    Awesome advice! I did the same thing at Orlando’s Whole Foods: bought out each and every jar of canned pumpkin possible to stock up for winter. There’s a shortage in Gainesville! Love your baby polar bear:)

  4. sue on October 9, 2009 at 6:15 pm

    the long hair is so cute…i like the polar bear look! hope you have some funny quotes to share with us later 🙂

  5. ashley on October 9, 2009 at 7:01 pm

    Hey Gina, I would also love your advice about eating to burn fat. As a runner, I generally burn 500-650 calories a day through running, etc., and eat 1550-1800 calories, i’m 5’9 and work in an office. Lately I feel like if anything I have less muscle and am not burning any fat. Why is this? Am I eating too much on the 1800 cal days or should i be eating a certian combo of foods to build muscle and burn fat? (more protein, fat , etc?)

  6. ashley on October 9, 2009 at 7:02 pm

    you and your site are awesome by the way!

  7. Abby (Abby's VeGaN Eats) on October 9, 2009 at 7:14 pm

    That smoothie looks delightful! I cannot find that flavor Lara anywhere.. whats up with that???!

    • Fitnessista on October 9, 2009 at 7:16 pm

      it’s a new flavor.. i couldn’t find it until recently and they don’t sell it where we live, i can only get it on vacay

  8. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) on October 9, 2009 at 7:23 pm

    Hi Gina, TGIF just wanted to say hi!

  9. Jenna on October 9, 2009 at 10:51 pm

    have a great dinner date with the pilot!

  10. Jodie on October 9, 2009 at 11:32 pm

    I have searched everywhere for that flavor. Your salad looks really good.

  11. Peanut Butter Bliss on October 10, 2009 at 7:23 am

    great advice gina!!
    I usually always eat something before I run because I have found that my workouts feel easier 🙂

    LOVE that new larabar flavor too!! its my new fav. by far (even the pb cookie!) the pb & j wasnt’ too good though. too much of a cherry flavor.

  12. Shelby on October 10, 2009 at 9:02 am

    Mmm, now I want a breakfast salad!

  13. Whitney @ Lettuce Love on October 10, 2009 at 9:56 am

    Aww your puppy is the cutest! Great advice about eating before or after a workout. I like to eat after but sometimes I wake up and my tummy is calling for food. 🙂

  14. Tina on October 10, 2009 at 11:09 am

    I definitely have to eat before I workout, or I feel totally weak! Great advice though. And love the salad for breakfast! Whole Foods is good any time, day or night.

  15. Heather McD (Heather Eats Almond Butter) on October 10, 2009 at 1:25 pm

    I love your little baby polar bear.

    I love the thought of a salad for breakfast – I can eat them at every meal. However, my breakfast salads usually come in omelet form. 😉

    Enjoy your date night.
    P.S. – I love that you bought some of those glass straws. Might have to order myself some as I love drinking from straws but don’t like all that plastic junk.

  16. Melissa (Melissa Likes To Eat) on October 10, 2009 at 5:26 pm

    Nice salad!!! I have yet to try the food bar at Whole Foods. I always eat before I work out…a light breakfast will do the trick and give me the energy I need.

  17. Laura on October 10, 2009 at 6:45 pm

    Sure missed you girls in yoga class this morning! Hope you are getting settled in back home..back into the flow! Regarding eating before working out…for yoga in paticular, I’ve always been taught it is best to not eat a few hours before practicing yoga….better for breathing purposes and for the detoxification element. Hope you come back to OKC soon! Namaste!

    • Fitnessista on October 10, 2009 at 8:41 pm

      hi laura!
      ahhhh i miss yoga so much already. i’m going to try to keep up with the podcasts and hope you can do some one of these days! it would be awesome to hear one of your classes on itunes 😀 i might have to take a trip back to okc for my yoga and raw food fix!
      hope you’re doing well!
      miss you <3

  18. Paige @ Running Around Normal on October 10, 2009 at 8:04 pm

    Aw! so glad you have Bella back! She looks like such a good roadtrip buddy:)

  19. Chantal on October 10, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    Must..have..kale chip recipe!! They look so tasty and mine are never quite right!

    And thanks to your motivation and inspiration, I ran my first 10k yesterday in a little under one hour and was super proud 🙂 I’ve been going through your old posts and I’ve totally convinced my sister to run the Disney Princess 1/2 Marathon with me in 2011 🙂 I’m super pumped.

    • Fitnessista on October 11, 2009 at 11:55 am

      congrats on your first 10k! that’s AWESOME- you should be so proud of yourself, it’s an amazing feeling and a wonderful accomplishment.
      hopefully i’ll get to see you for that half marathon! i’m making it a yearly tradition from now on 😀

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