Rookie Running Life

Healthy Recipes, Workouts, Random Musings

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Personal Pita Pizzas

Pizza is my weakness. I just love the cheesy goodness of it all. But I’m learning that satisfying my cravings doesn’t always have to mean cheat meals. In fact, this whole wheat personal pita pizza basically proves that theory! Check it out for yourself – it only takes 10-15 minutes to whip together.

Ingredients for 1 personal pizza:

  • 1 small whole wheat pita bread
  • 1/3 cup organic tomato sauce
  • Shredded mozzarella and cheddar cheese
  • Chopped veggies – your choosing!
  • Leftover cooked chicken – such as rotisserie chicken
  • 1 egg


  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  • Top the pita bread with tomato sauce. Then top with shredded cheese.
  • Top with your favorite veggies and chicken. I used scallions, peppers and mushrooms. I also put a little bit of BBQ sauce on my chicken, which again, is totally optional.
  • Pop into the oven for 10-12 minutes, keeping an eye on it.
  • In the meantime, fry an egg sunny side up using nonstick cooking spray and a pan. Top your pizza once it’s done with the egg, and enjoy an ooey, gooey delicious meal.IMG_9270

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Latest Obsession: Zoodles

Before I begin, I just want to say sorry to my blog readers for not having blogged since October. It’s somewhat hard to work full-time, plan a wedding, workout regularly, and still have time to blog, but I’m going to try again with the start of 2016. Even if it’s a quick post or two, a check-in is better than nothing!

I’m proud to say a lot has changed since my last blog post. I purchased a gym membership to the gym located right in my work’s building, so my early morning workouts have been a lot easier to achieve knowing that I’ll beat rush hour traffic. I also purchased my wedding dress (hooray!) so it’s crunch time to remain in good shape – I don’t want to fall off the wagon now. And I’ve also tried A TON of new, healthy recipes that I’m so excited to share with you all in the weeks ahead.

Right now, I must say I’m all about zoodles, or zucchini noodles. Some may use spiralizers, but I’ve done just fine with my Veggetti, a handheld, $10-15 contraption that is my go-to lately! Here are a few of my favorite zoodle combinations:

  • Ground turkey & marinara sauce on top of zoodles: This recipe is too easy, and it takes 10 minutes, tops. Simply sauté ground turkey with your choice of seasonings. In a separate pan, sauté the zoodles for 2-3 minutes, then top with organic marinara sauce. Combine and top with some parm – yum!FullSizeRender (3)
  • Shrimp scampi zoodles: I made GimmeSomeOven’s15 minute skinny shrimp scampi recipe, and instead of linguine, made a side of zoodles. The veggies absorbed the wine sauce really quickly, making them even more delicious!IMG_8298
  • Replacement for a side of spaghetti: The possibilities here are really endless, but my favorite thing about zoodles is while I make a hearty side of pasta for my family, I can quickly spiralize zucchini and save so many calories in a minute or two. It’s really helped me keep on track – just have a jar or two of organic pasta sauce handy to top it off, for a quick weeknight side.

What’s your favorite zoodle recipe? Share them with me in the comments section below. For more zoodle-inspired recipes, follow me on Instagram (I post daily!): @RookingRunningLife.

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At-Home Workouts & Grokker Giveaway

GrokkerI used to be a gym fanatic, but after toying around with a few at-home workout DVDs, I became hooked on the convenience and comfort of working out in my living room. But, sometimes these DVDs can become redundant, especially when you know every sequence and move that’s coming up like the back of your hand.

Enter Grokker. It’s like having a fitness instructor right in your living room. With tons of online fitness videos to choose from, including yoga, abs, cardio kickboxing, barre, pilates, strength training and so much more, every day is a new, different and exciting workout! Not only do the videos vary in workout, but I can also choose between quick ten minute workout sessions, or if I have the time, take a full hour and really break a sweat. Oh, and I can’t forget to mention that also has tons of healthy cooking recipe videos as well – fitness and food, how can I resist?!

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So last night, I put Grokker to the test and completed the HIIT Arms Workout – from the HIIT Club series. 20 minutes of HIIT – I was sweating and smiling all at the same time. It felt great to mix it up and try new moves that I never have before, including tricep push-ups; burpees; and more. I also liked how the video had beginner, intermediate, and advanced options during the sets of reps – I choose to go with intermediate, but could totally see myself trying advanced in the near future.

Check out the workout video for yourself, and if you have 20 minutes in your day (who doesn’t?!), then give it a try!

Discount Code

Like what you see? Well, I have some good news! Use the promo code ‘99CENTS’ for 99 cents for first month of premium membership on Grokker! What a bargain – especially as gym memberships are much more than that per month.

Giveaway: Grokker Three Month Premium Membership

And even better news for one lucky reader. Grokker has generously allowed me to GIVEAWAY A THREE MONTH PREMIUM MEMBERSHIP (a $60 value)! So, be sure to follow @GrokkerInc on Twitter and Instagram, try out a video for yourself, and let me know what was your #faveworkout!


Chocolate PB Protein Shake & Mighty Nut Giveaway

On weekday mornings, I only have a few minutes to whip up a filling, healthy breakfast that will keep me full for at least two hours. My go-to: a protein shake. I’ve tried a bunch of different concoctions, but I’m a chocolate lover, so my favorite BY FAR will always have to be this chocolate PB protein shake, with some java in it to feel wide awake and ready for the day.

IMG_8361Lately, I’ve been putting in a “secret” ingredient that I absolutely love – Peanut Butter & Co.’s Mighty Nut Powdered Peanut Butter! With 85% less fat calories than traditional peanut butter, and only 1g of fat and a whopping 5g of protein per 2 tablespoons, this addition has made all the difference in my shakes. And the best part is that Mighty Nut comes in various flavors, including chocolate (swoon!), vanilla, original, and flax & chia.

It’s a must try in your shakes, and lucky for my readers, I’m having another giveaway! You read correctly – one lucky winner will win a bottle of Mighty Nut Powdered Peanut Butter in the flavor of their choice. Simply like or comment on my blog post, and be sure to follow @GoMightyNut on Twitter and Instagram.

And lastly, I leave you with my delicious tasting morning protein shake which tastes exactly like a chocolate peanut butter cup milkshake. You’re welcome. 🙂

Servings: 1 shake


  • 1 scoop chocolate protein powder (I use Quest brand)
  • 1 cup cold brewed coffee
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • ½ banana
  • 2 tbsp. Mighty Nut Powdered Peanut Butter (I used chocolate flavor, but any kind will do!)
  • Dash of cinnamon (optional)

Blend all ingredients in a blender and enjoy!

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Meal Prep Mondays & Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts Giveaway

FullSizeRenderIt’s Columbus Day here in the US, so I’m fortunate to have today off – which also means my meal prep falls on a Monday night this week! This week’s line up will include the same base throughout the week: really colorful salad. Romaine lettuce, plum tomatoes, red pepper, crunchy carrots and reduced fat feta crumbles sounded like the perfect combination. As for protein toppings, I’m alternating between tuna and chicken this week, so I won’t get bored with my lunches.

And perhaps the least ‘boring’ thing on my salad also happen to be the smallest little seeds – Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts! These are all-natural raw shelled hemp seeds, which not only taste great but are also packed with 10 grams of protein and 10 grams of omegas per 30 gram serving. It will make me feel full after having a light salad for lunch, meaning less temptation of snacking the afternoon away.

If you’re unfamiliar with Hemp Hearts (like I was before trying them out), they are lower in carbs than flax and chia; and they are raw, vegan-friendly and non-GMO. You can sprinkle them on literally anything – salads, yogurt, cereal, parfaits, etc.

If you’re a health food nut like me (I’m up for anything that is nutritious!) then you seriously can’t go wrong with Hemp Hearts. Try them out today by entering my giveaway – rules for entry: leave a comment below, and be sure to follow @ManitobaHarvest on Twitter and/or Instagram!

One lucky reader will win a 2oz bag of Hemp Hearts! Additionally, use the promo code HHSP1015 for 20% off Manitoba Harvest’s entire web site store at Promo code expires December 31, 2015.

What are you meal prepping this week? Have you ever tried Hemp Hearts? Share your thoughts in a comment below!

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Super Breakfast: Egg and Avocado Open-Faced Sammies

IMG_7010It’s no question that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It gives you the fuel you need to get on with your morning, and helps kick start metabolism. My favorite breakfast during the week is my grab-and-go protein shake, but when the weekend rolls around, I like to actually take time (aka a few minutes) preparing a tasty breakfast.

One of my favorites is egg sandwiches! You can add cheese, bacon, veggies – anything really – for a satisfying breakfast sammie. But have you ever tried it with some smashed avocado? Life changing.

Here’s the recipe – try it out this Labor Day weekend!

Ingredients (makes 1 sandwich):

  • 1 slice of wheat sandwich thin (so half of a serving, since this sandwich is open faced)
  • 1 egg
  • ½ avocado
  • Garlic powder
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Chili powder
  • Cheese (optional – I didn’t use it)


  1. Toast one sandwich wheat thin slice in the toaster.
  2. In the meantime, crack an egg over a pre-greased, pre-heated pan. Let it cook for 5-8 minutes (pending how runny you like your yolk). I don’t flip mine.
  3. Smash an avocado, and season the mash with all seasonings.
  4. Assemble toasted bread slice, smear seasoned avocado paste, and top with a hot egg.

21 Day Fix Tally: I would count this as ½ yellow (since we are using sandwich thin bread – if using regular wheat toast, count as 1 yellow); ½ red; 1 blue.

What are some of your favorite weekend breakfast foods? Share in the Comments below!

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Clean Caramel Apple Cake, with Blue Diamond Salted Caramel Almonds

IMG_7755Here in New England, it’s starting to feel like fall is slowly creeping up on us. It’s somewhat chilly in the mornings, pumpkin-flavored everything is making its way back onto shelves, and personally, I’m getting cravings for warm, sweet comfort food. Caramel, apple pie, pumpkin spice – it’s all a few of my favorite flavors, and all incorporated into this clean cake recipe, adapted from the Dashing Dish cookbook.

But my favorite thing about this recipe is the tasty almonds that I incorporated throughout the batter — Blue Diamond Salted Caramel Almonds. They are just the right amount of sweet, come in a very portable container (hello, office drawer!) and make for a great snack to curb any fall cravings. In this recipe, they add the perfect complimentary crunch, while still keeping this cake completely clean.

Ingredients (makes 8 slices):

  • 2 cups oats
  • ½ cup sweetener that measures like sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 4 egg whites (about ¾ cup liquid egg whites)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp caramel extract
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1 apple, peeled, cored and finely chopped
  • ¼ cup Blue Diamond Salted Caramel Almonds, chopped
  • Nonstick cooking spray


  1. Spray an 8” or 9” round cake pan with cooking spray. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a blender or food processor, blend the oats, sweetener, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice until finely ground.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the apple sauce, egg whites, egg, and extracts. Add in the oat mixture from step 2, until a batter is formed.IMG_7757
  4. Stir in the chopped apple and almonds. Pour into cake pan.
  5. Bake for 20-22 minutes, keeping an eye not to overcook the cake. Slice like a pizza and serve!



At only 100 calories a slice, the whole family is bound to enjoy this clean, semi-sweet treat. And if you’re looking for the perfect complement to the Salted Caramel Almonds you’ll have remaining, then I highly recommend pairing them with another favorite flavor of mine by Blue Diamond, Blueberry Almonds! Such a flavorful pairing – the hard part is stopping at just a handful! 🙂

What are some of your favorite almond flavors? Do any pairings work particularly well? Share some suggestions with me in the Comments section below!

This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds.