Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Hunter Mountain Snowboarding - GoPro


This is a little video I put together that I shot using my GoPro Hero. We tried a bunch of different mounts - head, board, pole, and I think the coolest is the pole mount. This was shot at Hunter Mountain in the Catskills of New York the day after Christmas 2011. I edited it using Cyberlink Powerdirector 9. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Michael Caught Dancing

This is pretty funny - Michael has been listening to his iPod touch with headphones and dancing in his room. We caught him - very funny

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Ultimate Cable Crossover Exercise



During my 30lb weight loss over the past 2 years (206lbs to approx 176lbs) I've gotten a lot of questions about my workout routines and eating habits so I decided to post a bit about part of my routine. My schedule is 5 days weights, 1 day running then repeat. Occasionally there is a complete rest day when life intervenes, but everyone needs a day off here and there to rest. The breakdown is as follows:


Day 1 - Chest/tri's/stretching/abs
Day 2 - Back/bi's/stretching/abs
Day 3 - Legs/stretching/abs
Day 4 - Shoulders/stretching/abs
Day 5 - Arms (bi's & tri's) /stretching/abs
Day 6 - Cardio


This is a portion of my chest/tri's day. This is my "ultimate cable crossover" routine. The reason it differs from normal cable crossovers is because I begin with the rungs at the very top of the cable crossovers (#17). After each set of crossovers I immediately do a set of push ups using the "perfect pushups." For each set of crossovers I lower the rungs 2 notches - start at #17 then go to #15 all the way down to #1. This means I am working every angle of my chest by starting at the top and finishing at the bottom. I do 9 sets of crossovers with approx 8-10 reps per set and additionally do 9 sets of push ups with 8-10 per set. 

I do this exercise after flat bench and after incline dumbbell press. This is a real killer and will totally rip up your chest. The flat bench and dumbbell press put on the mass while this exercise combined with push ups shreds. After this I do 3 sets of the pec-dec machine to finish off chest. Here is a video from the middle of the routine - and yes, I am getting a bit thin on top - I didn't realize how much until watching this video - I am 38 years old :)

Monday, December 5, 2011

First Tournament of the Season




Well, it's the beginning of the season - learning time. We've been back at wrestling practice for a few weeks now and Michael has been doing pretty well. We entered the Quakertown Wrestlinng Tournament  this past Sunday to get back on the mat officially. This is his first time wrestling at the "Bantam" level. He weighed in at 50lb's on the dot.

Michael wrestled two matches  His first he came out on fire and totally dominated his opponent. Unfortunately he made some mistakes and allowed the kid to tie him forcing them into overtime. He got taken down in overtime and that was that. His second match he also did ok in, but he lost 9-2. He was pretty disappointed, but I told him that this is really the best way to learn. It's a long season....




Monday, November 28, 2011

Leftover Turkey - Buffalo Salad

I made this BIG salad for lunch using some leftover turkey from Thanksgiving. It was super easy and delicious!

Ingredients:
1/2-1 cup diced Turkey (I prefer dark meat)
2 TBS hot sauce
baby spinach
romaine lettuce
tomatoes
sliced carrots
purple cabbage
celery
radishes
sunflower seeds
dried cranberries
sprinkle of salad seasoning
bacon bits
Parmesan cheese

Directions:
Dice the turkey and put into microwave safe bowl - set aside. Combine all cold ingredients together - add salad seasoning and toss. Microwave diced turkey for one minute then toss with hot sauce. Add to salad and enjoy!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

THIS IS SPARTA

When Gretchen won the Spartan Race back in September, and came home with a real looking Spartan sword, I immediately decided I HAD to be a 300 Spartan for Halloween. I've been working out pretty intensely for the past 2 years and I feel like I've gotten into pretty much the best shape of my life. So I started growing my "King Leonidas" beard, I researched 300 Spartan costumes and found the good ones to be ridiculously expensive. So instead, I figured - I have the sword and if I could get a decent cape and helmet, I could make the rest of the costume myself. I bought the cape, Spartan skirt (I did not want to wear the codpiece :) ) and helmet from a Halloween store pretty cheap and then found some great online resources for making your own Spartan shield. This website also had a great way to make your own 300 Spartan Vambraces (armguards) out of cardboard and paper mache. The shield and arm-guards together took me about 2 weeks to make, but I was really taking my time and not rushing it. I think they turned out pretty dam good. The shield was made from cardboard, a disc sled, paper mache, and bronze paint. The armguards were made from cereal boxes, paper mache, wire, and bronze paint. I bought 3 leather belts from the dollar store for the "cape straps" and a belt to hold my sword up. I have leather sandals that I was going to wear, but the freak October snowstorm put an end to that, so I went with boots instead. We had plans to attend a great Halloween party, but the snowstorm also put an end to that with downed trees across the road we were driving on. So instead, we went to the Brickhouse in Pottstown as they were having a Halloween party get together there as well. Gretchen went as my Spartan Queen and we all had a good time. Some photos below of our costumes and the gear I used. Enjoy!

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Spartan Helmet & Sword

Spartan Shield

Nicole, Andy, and Chommy went with us. Nicole was Amy Winehouse, Andy was "Willard," and Chommy threw his costume together in 2 minutes of Halloween store shopping and went as "backwards guy" with the V for Vendetta mask - LOL. Fun...

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Monday, October 17, 2011

Rock Solid Mud Run


Since Gretchen and I had so much fun at the Spartan Race last month, we decided to do another mud run - The Rock Solid Mud Run in Englishtown, NJ. This one was not as intense as the Spartan, but it was definitely a fun 5 mile course with 30+ military grade obstacles. I found the running on the course to be easier than the Spartan since this was flat and the Spartan was up a mountain, but some of the obstacles were pretty tough. Starting out you had to swim/wade through a lake three times after jumping off of a 20' platform or sliding down a steep slide (which Gretchen chose). We recorded the run with my GoPro Hero video camera and took turns wearing it. It was definitely a good time and I'd do it again. Here a fun video I put together using music that Gretchen insisted on :) Enjoy and please comment!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Western Lehigh Soccer Tournament Champions


Well, the girls Lightning U10 travel soccer team from Pottsgrove did it again with another 1st place win at the Western Lehigh Soccer Tournament over the weekend of October 8-9, 2011. They had two games on Saturday and two on Sunday and they dominated them all. Great job girls!

























Here are the photos from the games:




Saturday, September 10, 2011

PA Spartan Sprint - 1st Place

AfterBefore_MG_5355IMG_1591IMG_1592_MG_5360
_MG_5363_MG_5371Winners_MG_5358_MG_5353


Well, we did it - and Gretchen took an AMAZING 1st place! I am seriously so proud of her. Gretchen is the runner of the family - I am not. When we decided to do "The Spartan," she said she would stay with me throughout the race. Yeah, that went out the window about 15 minutes in when one of the workers told her she was the 2nd place woman at that time. She took off - I don't blame her at all and I didn't want to hold her back. We were both very impressed with the course. I was pretty nervous since they upped the distance from 3 miles to 4.8 miles, but we both did well. Gretchen finished in 1 hour and 17 minutes and I finished in 1 hour and 33 minutes. Not too bad...Gretchen came home with a bad ass gladiator sword as the first place trophy and she may get to compete in another Spartan race in Texas for a $10k prize. It was a very good day. Here is the video of Gretchen getting her "trophy."


***UPDATE***
This is the actual video of the Spartan Race in PA posted yesterday on Spartan.tv:
Pa Spartan Sprint

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Parmesan Roasted Potatoes



































I found this recipe today for roasted Parmesan potatoes and had to try them. I thought they would be the perfect accompaniment for the London broil I am grilling. I tweaked it to make a bit more than the recipe says, and they turned out fantastic.

Ingredients:
4 medium red potatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp paprika
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 400ºF (200ºC).
Cut the potatoes in wedges.
In a small bowl, combine the Parmesan, garlic, and paprika and set aside.
Next, toss the potatoes and oil together in a mixing bowl then add the bowl of cheese and seasonings and stir to coat.
Arrange them on a cookie sheet in a single layer.
Bake for about 30-35 minutes then remove from oven and turn over all the potatoes.
Bake for another few minutes until crispy and golden.


Before:
After:

Sunday, August 21, 2011

West-Mont United Battle At HillTop Soccer Tournament

The Pottsgrove U10 girls soccer team had an amazing weekend of soccer with a 1st place finish at the 8th annual West-Mont United Battle At HillTop Soccer Tournament. All the girls played fantastic and we are so proud of them. I took a ton of photos of the team in action. See below:

Friday, August 19, 2011

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Jamie Oliver's Perfect Roast Chicken

I cook chicken a LOT. I am always trying to find different recipes to get away from the same old chicken dishes. I grill chicken, saute chicken, skewer chicken, make chicken fajitas, chicken quesadillas, chicken tacos, and the list goes on and on. This summer has been so hot that I have rarely used the oven in my new kitchen to cook. Today the temperature was pretty moderate so I decided to try a roast chicken recipe. I found this one from Jamie Oliver (who I am a huge fan of) on his website, jamieoliver.com. I tweaked it slightly by using fresh rosemary from my garden and already peeled garlic cloves, but other than that I followed it pretty closely. I think it turned out fantastic! These are the photos of my meal (yes we eat early - helped me lose weight):

Before:

















After:

















Here is the recipe from his site:


ingredients


• 1 x approximately 1.6kg chicken, preferably free-range, organic or higher welfare 
• 2 medium onions 
• 2 carrots
• 2 sticks of celery
• 1 bulb of garlic
• olive oil 
• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1 lemon 
a small bunch of fresh thyme, rosemary, bay or sage, or a mixture




method


Having learnt the things I’ve learnt about chickens over the last few years, of course I’m going to suggest that you buy free-range or organic. But if you’re a little tight for cash, the RSPCA Freedom Food chickens are very good and available in all good supermarkets.

To prepare your chicken
• Take your chicken out of the fridge 30 minutes before it goes into the oven
• Preheat your oven to 240°C/475°F/gas 9
• There’s no need to peel the vegetables – just give them a wash and roughly chop them
• Break the garlic bulb into cloves, leaving them unpeeled
• Pile all the veg and garlic into the middle of a large roasting tray and drizzle with olive oil
• Drizzle the chicken with olive oil and season well with salt and pepper, rubbing it all over the bird
• Carefully prick the lemon all over, using the tip of a sharp knife (if you have a microwave, you could pop the lemon in these for 40 seconds at this point as this will really bring out the flavour)
• Put the lemon inside the chicken’s cavity, with the bunch of herbs

To cook your chicken
• Place the chicken on top of the vegetables in the roasting tray and put it into the preheated oven
• Turn the heat down immediately to 200°C/400°F/gas 6 and cook the chicken for 1 hour and 20 minutes
• If you’re doing roast potatoes and veggies, this is the time to crack on with them – get them into the oven for the last 45 minutes of cooking
• Baste the chicken halfway through cooking and if the veg look dry, add a splash of water to the tray to stop them burning
• When cooked, take the tray out of the oven and transfer the chicken to a board to rest for 15 minutes or so
• Cover it with a layer of tinfoil and a tea towel and put aside. Now is the time to make your gravy

To carve your chicken
• Remove any string from the chicken and take off the wings (break them up and add to your gravy for mega flavour)
• Carefully cut down between the leg and the breast
• Cut through the joint and pull the leg off
• Repeat on the other side, then cut each leg between the thigh and the drumstick so you end up with four portions of dark meat
• Place these on a serving platter
• You should now have a clear space to carve the rest of your chicken
• Angle the knife along the breastbone and carve one side off, then the other
• When you get down to the fussy bits, just use your fingers to pull all the meat off, and turn the chicken over to get all the tasty, juicy bits from underneath
• You should be left with a stripped carcass, and a platter full of lovely meat that you can serve with your piping hot gravy and gorgeous roast veg


• from Jamie's Ministry of Food

Saturday, August 6, 2011

 
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