Sweet Success

Sweet Success

Indulge in sweet success!

Week of Workouts {April 12-18}

There was a part of my body that was sore all week. My hamstrings were sore for a couple of days after my 11 mile run, then my butt, arms and abs were sore for a couple of days after I took an Insanity class for the first time. 

Early in the week I booked a massage for Friday. It was heavenly and exactly what my stiff and sore muscles needed.


Saturday, April 12 - 11 mile run. This was a hard one. The BF and I changed our route and ran out to the country and back. On the way back to town, we were running uphill against the wind and against a lot of traffic. Ugh! But we survived.

Sunday, April 13 - rest day

Monday, April 14 - 3 mile run. Rough run because I was still sore from Saturday’s 11-miler. And I was sweating like crazy for some reason.

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Happy Easter! Healthy Easter basket ideas for kids, runners and health nuts!


Happy Easter!

I hope you have fun plans with your family or friends. I will be going to the Easter service at the Catholic church Saturday night because my mom is going to be confirmed. Then we will celebrate my mom’s accomplishment Sunday with my brother’s in-laws (who were her sponsors in Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults). 

I already have plans to indulge in my fave Easter candy. I will have ONE Reece’s Peanut Butter Egg. It is my all time favorite candy in the whole world. The rest of the weekend will be healthy (the BF and I are running 12 miles Saturday morning!).

Besides Reece’s Peanut Butter eggs, my favorite part of Easter is making Easter baskets. This year, I gave my niece a little Easter gift - a Lisa Frank stationary set (my 90’s nostalgia was lost on her) and two cute maxi dresses. I didn’t really have a theme this year, I just found random things I thought she would like. She did, however, ask where the candy was. I didn’t put candy in there because I knew she would get her fill on Easter Sunday. 

Since kids seem to expect goodies in their Easter baskets, here are some ideas for a healthier basket.

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Insanity Review


I tried an Insanity class!

Since I have a few weeks off until I teach my next six-week Piloxing session, I decided to try a new class. My gym - the Good Samaritan Hospital Fitness/Wellness Center - just started offering Insanity classes.

You’ve probably seen those infomercials with that sexy guy, Shaun T., jumping around, doing workouts that look…insane. You can purchase Insanity DVD’s to do at home, but fitness professionals can also become certified to teach insanity in gyms.

So what is it? Insanity uses high intensity interval training, which helps your body burn maximum calories during the workout and burn more fat and calories for 24 hours after the workout.

Insanity classes are broken up into 3-5 minute blocks in which you go all out for that time. You get a very short break - long enough to take a few deep breaths and sip some water - then you start the next block. It’s all a mix of plyometrics, upper and lower body resistance and abs.

I got to the gym early so I ran 2 miles before the class started. I survived the entire class even though I had a quick workout before, but you definitely don’t NEED to do anything else before or after this class.

The 35-minute class I took was taught by Reve (We have two Insanity teachers - Reve and Mallory. I’m super excited Mallory is teaching because she used to come to my Piloxing classes!). I was the only newbie in the class so I was worried that I would be totally lost. But it was very easy to catch on to the movements and go right along with the others who knew what they were doing.

Our warm-up was a mix of jogging in place, something called bunny kicks (I think) and a side to side hop/lunge thing. Then we moved onto the first plyo/cardio block where we were doing jump squats, lunge jumps, those cheerleader star jump things and a couple other things. At some point we did those crazy jump things shown in the photo above. Yikes!

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{Grain-free} Carrot Cake Pancakes with Maple Cinnamon Coconut Butter


There are certain times of year that I get a little obsessed with a food or flavor.

Summer = berries. Fall = pumpkin. Winter = peppermint. Late winter = pomegranates. Spring = carrots.

I’ve been thinking of all the ways I can use carrots to make sweet carrot cakey things. Because really, what else are carrots good for?

These pancakes are gluten-free and paleo - all that stuff that is oh so popular in the diet world. I like them because they are easy, healthy and delish. My main requirements for food.

I made mini pancakes so that I could have a big stack of yummy pancakes. For some reason it makes me feel like I get to eat more, which I like. This recipe made about nine mini pancakes. But you could make larger pancakes if you don’t need the visual of a big ol’ stack of pancakes.

The coconut butter really makes these extra special so don’t skip that part!

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My Running Essentials

When I first started running about 6 years ago, I wore cotton/spandex workout pants, a pair of cheap running shoes and T-shirts. As I did my first Couch to 5K program, I bought an inexpensive sports watch so I could keep track of my time as I ran circles around the high school track.


(That’s me during my first half-marathon!)

When I committed to training for my first half-marathon, I bought a Nike + iPod Sport Kit and a pair of Nike running shoes. It wasn’t super accurate, but it allowed me to run somewhere besides the track and keep track of my miles. But I realized how inaccurate it was during my first half-marathon - at mile 12, it said I had run 13 miles. Total disappointment.

While I do think the great thing about running is that you can throw on a pair of shoes and go - when you start running longer distances and training for races, quality gear helps. It helps you reach your time or distance goals, it helps you prevent injuries and it helps make running a little easier (I stress ‘a little’ because running is still hard for me!).

Here are my current running essentials…

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Weekend Recap - 11 mile run + post-long run eats {April 11-13}

The weekend went by way too fast! But the BF and I had a great weekend. We got in our long half-marathon training run, ate some delish post-run meals and treats and cuddled up on the couch Sunday when winter decided to return.

Friday, April 11


After work, I went right to Happy Hour Yoga at Avani Yoga Studio. It was a great class. We worked on tree pose variations, side planks stars (possibly what they’re called) and I did some handstand prep. 

Friday nights have been really low key lately because the BF and I have been doing our long half-marathon training runs on Saturday mornings. We made a recipe from the Runner’s World Cookbook - Soba Noodles with Chicken and Peanut Sauce. It was delish and super easy to prepare. We also had salads with baby kale, baby spinach, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds and a homemade salad dressing made with olive oil, balsamic vinaigrette and maple syrup.

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Week of Workouts {April 5-11}

This week didn’t go as planned. My office was over 80 degrees for three days, and it sucked the energy from me. I skipped planned runs and strength training sessions because I felt exhausted. So most of my workouts were classes I taught.

Life doesn’t always go as planned, but you just have to roll with it, do better next time and celebrate your successes. I’ve learned that listening to my body is so much better than pushing myself through a workout and feeling worse later. Even though my workouts didn’t go as planned, I still worked out six days this week, I accomplished a long run, I helped other people work towards their fitness goals and I got to enjoy a yoga class.


Saturday, April 5 - 10 mile run! The BF and I tackled a 10-miler for our half-marathon training. His sister was in town visiting from Washington, and she joined us for about half of our run. It was a fun run!

Sunday, April 6 - rest day

Monday, April 7 - taught Piloxing

Tuesday, April 8 - taught cycling class in the morning and deep water aerobics in the evening


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What I Eat in a Day - April 10, 2014

I haven’t shared a day of eats in quite some time! I’m sure you’ve been wondering what I’ve been eating lately. Or not. But I’m going to share it with you anyway.

I started the day with some toast topped with almond butter, banana slices and honey. The bread was fresh baked whole wheat bread from HyVee, which will be opening here later in April. They are testing out their bakery before before the store opens and delivering yummy stuff to businesses all over town.

I also had my regular apple cider vinegar drink and some coffee.

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New Fresh Juice Recipes


I haven’t made fresh juice in awhile, so I thought it was time I dig out my juicer and get to work. Over the weekend, I was talking about juicing and I realized that I hadn’t made juice in a couple of months. I wasn’t really craving it when it was frigid outside, but now that it’s getting nice out, it sounds delish.

First, I made some fresh pineapple juice to use in my morning apple cider vinegar drink. I use the recipe from the Tone It Up Nutrition Program. I go back and forth between the pineapple juice version and an ACV drink made with organic apple juice, cinnamon and cayenne.


For more info on the benefits on apple cider vinegar, click here.

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Weekend Recap - Time with family + a long run {April 4-6}

I had a fun and busy weekend! The BF’s sister and her family were in town from Washington, so we spent the weekend with them! We had lots of fun, ate delicious food and got in a long run!

Friday, April 4

After work, I went to Yoga Happy Hour at Avani Yoga Studio. It was a great relaxy and stretchy class. We used tennis balls to knead out our muscles, and it was painful and wonderful. I need a massage!

Post-yoga, I met up with the BF’s sister and brother-in-law at WineStyles, who were visiting from Washington (the BF was working at his new part-time gig at WineStyles). I had a glass of malbec and a chicken and pepper flatbread pizza, which were both delish.

We had a great night catching up!

Saturday, April 5

The BF and I slept in a bit since we got home the night before a bit late and got to bed late. I had a bowl of oatmeal with chia seeds, dried figs, cinnamon, vanilla and chunky natural peanut butter. I also had a 1/4 of a cup of coffee.

We then got ourselves together and headed out for a 10 mile run! We stopped by the BF’s dad and stepmom’s house so his sister, Betsy, could join us on our run. She stuck with us for about five miles, then she headed home. The weather was great - in the 30’s - and there was just a bit of a breeze. I felt pretty strong during the run. My hamstrings were a bit tight by the end of the run.

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