7 Things You Didn’t Know About Wheat Germ: Giveaway {CLOSED}

At the risk of sounding like a health food newbie, I’m going to start off by saying that up until a week or two ago, I actually didn’t even really know that wheat germ was a thing. I mean, I guess I had heard of it before, but I definitely didn’t have any idea what it was or what you could do with it.

But now, thanks to some new friends at Kretschmer, that has all changed. And since my job is to inspire and empower all of you to be healthier and happier, I’m going to fill you in on what wheat germ is, how adding it to your diet can be beneficial to your health, and how to make some super awesome dishes using it. That is, unless you already know all about it. In which case, way to go! You’re so ahead of the Healthy Curve.

So far, I’ve only tested out this newly discovered super-food as a topping for my oatmeal at breakfast (pictured above) and a Greek yogurt mix-in for an after dinner snack. (Creative, I know!)

Oikos Vanilla Greek Yogurt with raisins, crumbled graham crackers, and of course, wheat germ.

Usually, I mix my yogurt with granola and almonds or fruit, but after trying this out for the first time a day or two ago, I’m totally sold on wheat germ. It added a perfect not-too-sweet crunch to the yogurt and now I’m just dreaming up all of the other ways I can make use of it.

Like say, in a roasted vegetable dish or a batch of pancakes!

But before I start testing out a dozen new recipes (which, you know I will), first let’s find out why this stuff is so good for you.

7 Things You Didn’t Know About Wheat Germ

1. Wheat Germ is the part of a wheat plant that sprouts and grows into a new plant and though it’s actually teeny tiny, it’s packed with protein and a ton of essential vitamins and minerals.

2. It contains vitamin E, an antioxidant, and folic acid, an essential B-vitamin. Both help protect and make new cells so that your body can fight off disease.

3. It’s full of magnesium, which works to keep your heart, bones, AND your immune system strong.

4. Wheat germ contains the B-vitamin Thiamin, which helps the body convert carbs into energy. Necessary for runners and all athletes alike!

5. It’s packed with phosphorus too. An important mineral that aides calcium with building strong bones and teeth.

6. Keep counting the minerals! Wheat germ is also filled with Zinc, which has many functions, like healing wounds and fighting off viruses.

7. Protein punch! That’s right. Bet you didn’t know that wheat germ is an excellent source of plant-based protein. Plus, it only contains healthy polyunsaturated fats.

Wow, can you say, SUPER-FOOD? I’m a little bit upset that I’ve only just been introduced to this powerhouse of a food. If you’ve never had a chance to try it before, I don’t want you to have to wait any longer. So, I’m giving away a jar of Kretschmer Wheat Germ + one Organic Oikos Greek Yogurt to one lucky Hungry Reader!

Continue reading to find out how to enter! Continue reading

Flu-fighting Super-food Salad

So, you wanna prevent the flu.

Sure, you could get a flu shot, but if you’re like me and would rather opt for more natural and holistic preventative measures, then why not simply give your immune system a boost the old fashion way?

Don’t worry, I’m not talking about some crazy, weird concoction that your grandma used to swear by.

I’m talking about you’re diet. I’m talking about eating foods that are high in antioxidants, which help your body fight off free radicals and unwelcome bugs and viruses… Like the flu!

I’m talking about adding a dish like this Flu-fighting Super-food Salad to your daily diet. I whipped this up a few weeks ago when I felt myself starting to come down with a pretty nasty cold. Whenever I feel myself starting to get sick, my first reaction is to up my antioxidants. I brew lots of green tea, I add lemon (which is high in vitamin C) to my water, and make sure that all of my meals are filled with nutrient-dense “super-foods” like avocados, tomatoes, spinach, and berries.

Actually, who am I kidding? All of that is typically part of my daily routine. But whenever I feel like a cold is coming on, I become much more adamant about it. I’m more like:

[original image via KYM and Hyperbole and a Half]

And so, super-food-filled salads like this one frequently end up on my plate and like magic, I start to feel better! Only it’s not magic, it’s food. In my mind though, the two are comparable. In fact, it might be safe to say that food is actually better than magic. Anyone else agree?

If you want to be just like me, top this salad with my Homemade Greek Yogurt, Honey Mustard Dressing. But since most of the ingredients here are pretty neutral, I imagine it will taste good with any dressing that your little heart pleases. Also, I’m not the boss of you. So feel free to throw in anything else you think might make this dish even more super!

Now share with me: What’s the first preventative measure you take when you start to feel like you might be getting sick?

Ingredients:

1 cup baby spinach leaves

1/2 tomato, cubed,

1 hard boiled egg, peeled and chopped

1/3 cup chick peas, drained and rinsed

1/4 of an avocado, chopped

1 thick slice of a red onion, chopped into long slivers (I only like a small amount of onion in my salads. Feel free to add more to your liking.)

Crumbled goat cheese

Directions:

1.Toss all ingredients except goat cheese until well mixed.

2. Sprinkle with goat cheese then top with dressing of your choice.

Continue reading

Hungry Running Recap: ‘Getting My Active On’ with Old Navy

Isn’t it kind of a silly, stupid wonder that I’ve never talked about my favorite running gear and workout clothes with you all before?

Yeah, it really is. Ever since I’ve started running, the amount of fitness related clothing in my wardrobe has nearly quadrupled. Before becoming one of the crazy ones (AKA a runner), I used to workout in old t-shirts and baggy gym shorts.

5528_1097157114395_6385658_n

Example A: The red mesh track shorts pictured above. No they are not the worst, but I think they were probably one of three pairs of gym shorts I owned, which meant laundry needed to be done frequently and you could catch me running in them all of the time. (Which you will soon come to learn the irony of.)

And while there’s absolutely nothing wrong with working out in old, baggy clothes, there’s definitely something more fun about running in clothes that were made for well… running! Plus, clothes made for running also happen to make the sport much more comfortable. Two reasons good enough for me to swap my old, raggedy t-shirts and mesh shorts for a few pairs of running capris and some fitted moisture-wicking tanks.

After I started running 3+ days per week and working out with a personal trainer, it eventually became inevitable that I would need to invest in some more workout clothes. Maybe this is weird, but I actually remember some of the first pieces of exercise attire I ever purchased. One shirt in particular is a grey and orange fitted racer-back tank from Old Navy. I bought this thing at least two years ago. I still wear it ALL OF THE TIME. In fact, it may be my favorite workout top ever. It fits perfect, it never rides up or gets all fussy while I’m running, it’s cute (hopefully I’m under the right impression here), and clearly it’s durable because I’ve worn it through many workouts over the past two years.

545922_10152122690380584_1563906660_n

Here I am wearing it after a run across the Brooklyn Bridge this past September.

556513_10151860754805584_983860674_n

And oh look, there I am wearing it again at the top of a mountain with Bobbi and Kristen in Colorado at the Fitness & Health Bloggers Conference back in May.

524437_10152068486175584_1903746879_n

Oh my gosh, what a coincidence. There I am wearing it again after a yoga class with Breanne.

563948_10152190995370584_1666416773_n

Maybe you can’t tell because the above picture doesn’t have the best lighting, but that’s me in the middle and I swear on my blog, underneath that black shirt is yep, you guessed it, my favorite Old Navy tank. See it peeking its bottom seams out from underneath my layers after my first ever run in Central Park back in November?

And just so you know, this is only about half the proof of how much I love this timeless tank. If you’d like, you can go and scroll through my Instagram profile. Count how many more pictures you can find of me wearing it. My guess is there’s at least a dozen. (P.S. if you actually do this and comment with the correct answer, I will dub you the Best Hungry Runner Reader of All Time.)

What can I say? When I like a piece of clothing, I like a piece of clothing. And if it’s not dirty I’m gonna wear it! (Yes, that is a Jack’s Mannequin reference. If you did not spend your adolescents in the 2000’s then you have no idea what I’m talking about.)

Anyway! This silly shirt is the reason why when I was offered the opportunity to blog about Old Navy’s activewear line, I was all over it like cheese on pizza. I was headed for the store faster than you can say, “Get a new shirt.” However, what I found unfortunate is that the grey and orange racer-back is no longer a part of the line. Had it been, you know I would’ve purchased 10 or so more. However, I’m not mad because they do have a rather large selection of new workout attire to choose from.

DSCN0187display

Here’s are a few new pieces that you might catch me donning as I run around New York City in the days ahead. (That is if I’m not wearing the grey tank that day. :P)

Higher Impact Molded Support Bra in pink.

  • Features: GoDry moisture-wicking, removable pads, designed for support.
  • Price: $16.50.
  • On sale for: $4.99!

DSCN0261blackcapris

Seamless Tank in aqua.

  • Features: Seamless, nylon material, GoDry moisture-wicking.
  • Price: $19.94
  • On sale for: $10

Fitted Capris in black.

  • Features: GoDry moisture-wicking and flatlock seams to prevent chafing.
  • Price: $29.94
  • On sale for: $15

P.S. Yes, that is a security tag that the cashier left on these pants. No, I did not have time to go back to the store and have it removed yet. Yes, I still wore these during my run on Sunday because I really just couldn’t wait to try them.

DSCN0240caprishrit

Fitted Capris in pink and grey.

  • Features: Compression; smooth, supportive, and GoDry moisture-wicking.
  • Price: $22.94
  • On sale for: $15!

DSCN0250pants2

Reversible, Boot-cut Compression Pants in purple and black.

  • Features: Reversible, interior pockets, compression, & stretch material.
  • Price: $26.94
  • On sale for: $18

DSCN0278pose

Black Leggings

  • Price: $10
  • Features: Leggins are better for yoga than yoga pants. Also, leggings are better for everyday life than all pants. Jeans or any article of clothing that a normal person would accept as pants are like straightjackets for legs and I refuse to subject my lower limbs to such suffering.

Aside from the fact that Old Navy’s active-wear line is much more affordable than basically any other brand out there (yet still stands up to the test of time!), my favorite part about the clothes is that they come in so many bright colors. Hence why as previously mentioned, they are more fun. (And safer for running in traffic!)

Here’s me wearing my new bright-blue tank for the first time on Saturday. (OK, well it’s under my jacket. It was nice out that day, but not that nice.)

I ran 5 miles to Trader Joe’s and then went food shopping. I had originally planned to wear my new black Old Navy capris on Saturday, but like I mentioned before, the cashier left the security tag on them. In fact, I had actually considered running to Old Navy in them so I could have it removed. But I figured it might be awkward when it came time for me to stick my sweaty ankle up on the counter so they could take it off. Yeah, no… I just can’t really see how that would have worked out well.

However, yesterday I couldn’t wait any longer to go for a run in them. (Yes, they are that nice.) So even though I had no time to bring them back to the store yet, I ran in them anyway. In my mind, these things are the equivalent of a little black dress. Just the perfect thing to wear for any workout. All of Old Navy’s active-wear is on sale until January 16th, so I may have to go back and pick up a few more pairs… Minus the security tags, please!

And, oh look! Can you guess which tank that is sticking out from underneath my bright pink long-sleeve shirt?

You know after writing all about it I just had to wear it yesterday!

And in non-running related purchases that I can actually relate to running (because everything relates to running): Moccasin slippers. (Only $10!)

Because resting tired legs and feet after a run is just as important as the workout itself. And because my sister has the same pair that I steal from her whenever I go home and now I won’t have to do that anymore. 😛

What’s your absolute, number one, favorite piece of activewear that you would wear every single day if you could? (Tweet me a picture of yourself wearing it if you have one! Tag it with #GetYourActiveOn.)

This post is sponsored by Old Navy. Check out Old Navy’s Active wear in stores or at oldnavy.com. Continue reading

Hungry Running Recap: 1 mile… in 34 minutes?

Yep, you read the title right. It took me almost 34 minutes to run one mile today.

Okay, not really. I’m exaggerating a little. Stretching the truth for the tale. But since it’s time to step up my training game a few notches, I opted for a bootcamp-style circuit workout in lieu of simply going out for a run today. Here’s what The Bootcamp Blaster (that’s what I named the workout) looks like:

58e19f565b5411e2948e22000a1f9d45_7

So you see, since I ran .25 miles four times today, I did in fact complete 1 mile. And since completing four rounds of this circuit took me 33 minutes and 47 seconds, technically, yes, it took me almost 34 minutes to run a mile today. It was just that I had to do a bunch of other crazy stuff in between. And by crazy stuff, I mean exercises that will make you Sweat with a capital S.

For those of you who’ve never been introduced to burpees before. Let me be your guide into the wonderful world of this beast of an exercise which fitness enthusiasts around the world love to hate.

How to do a Burpee

Try doing 10 right now.

Did you do ’em? No you didn’t. Let’s go! Seriously…

There ya go!

Now, how do you feel?

Out of breath. Speechless. Mhm. That’s what I thought 😉

photo

Don’t worry, I felt the same after finishing this today. P.S. Check out my Greatist tee.

Fact: Exercising with this shirt on provides extra boosts of motivation.

So, I’m starting to take my training back up a few more levels because I’ve got some big plans for 2013. My first race of the year is going to be the Gridiron Classic in Central Park on February 3rd. It’s just four miles, but it will be my first sprint-distance race and I wanna be ready to rock it.

And in addition to my plan to run the nine races needed to qualify for the 2014 New York City Marathon (yes, that is totally happening!), I’ll also be racing a Tough Mudder this spring. So basically, this is going to be one BA year and it’s going to require a whole lot of BA Bootcamp training.

What are YOUR fitness goals and aspirations for 2013 and what steps are you taking to make sure you conquer them? Continue reading

Whole Wheat, Personal Pan Pizza

Dilemma: You’re on the hunt for a quick and easy lunch or dinner and you’re dying for a slice of pizza, but also trying really hard to stick to your clean eating diet.

Solution: This homemade, ready in about 30 minutes, whole wheat, personal-pan-sized pizza.

Yes, it’s true. All of this can be yours in about 30 minutes or less.

Okay, sorry. Not “all of this.” If you’ve got your heart set on some sweet potato fries, you’ll have to give it a little more time. (However, they are highly recommended.)

But the pizza. The dough for this pizza comes together quicker than you can imagine. And once you flatten it out and roll out the crust, all that’s left to do is plop on all of your favorite toppings and stick it in the oven for about 20-25 minutes.

I try my best to eat completely clean during the week, but I have to admit, pizza is my biggest weakness. It takes a lot of will power to deny all of the New York City pizza shops that I walk by on a daily basis. Especially when so many of them offer slices for just a dollar. One dollar! Oh, the temptation.

Now, don’t get me wrong. When I want a real slice of pizza, I go for that real slice of pizza. But during the week, I like to keep my diet as clean as possible. I always feel at the top of my game and more energized when I do. Which is why I love that when I’m really in the mood for a slice, but want to stay dedicated to keeping my diet clean, I can come home, mix up a quick batch of dough, top it off with some sauce, light cheese, and veggies, and not overload on cheese and oil.

P.S. This recipe is a variation of my previous Whole Wheat, Yeast-free Pizza recipe. It’s essentially the same thing, as this dough also requires no yeast. I simply reduced the ingredient proportions to yield a smaller-sized pie for the times when you’re feeding just you!

What one food that isn’t necessarily considered “healthy” is your biggest weakness?

Ingredients:

3/4 cup whole wheat flour

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tablespoon baking powder

a few dashes oregano

a few dashes basil

1 + 1/2 tablespoon olive oil (Works best with regular olive oil, although virgin or extra virgin works too if it’s what you have on hand.)

1/2 cup water

Directions:

1. In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking powder, oregano, and basil.

2. Add the olive oil.

3. Gradually add the water, stirring as you go. Continue to stir until a dough-like texture begins to from. (You may or may not need more water depending on the consistency and texture of the dough. If 1/2 cup is not enough to absorb all of the flour, continue to add more in very small increments until all of it is absorbed and you have 1 large ball of dough. Also, the dough may be slightly sticky, in which case you can simply sprinkle it with a bit more flour for coating.)

4. Using your hands roll the dough into a ball. Lightly flour a flat surface and use your hands to flatten the dough into a small “personal-pan” sized pizza crust. Roll the edges of the dough for a thick crust.

5. Add your toppings! (For this particular pizza I used Classico’s Tomato & Basil jarred tomato sauce, steamed broccoli, chopped tomato chunks, and goat cheese.)

Continue reading