Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Tis the Season...

It is the start of the sparkling lights, family memories and... lots of goodies and treats around. Yes, I am talking about the holidays. I remember being so freaked out and nervous last year, going though the holidays for the first time after making my healthy changes. Yikes! However, I survived, just like I will this time around. I am more confident going in because I have been through it once and I am more sure of the habits I have created. I love this time of year and I am glad I have gotten over the serious nerves. I will still have issues and have to over think everything, but I will make it.

Last week was Thanksgiving and I spent it with friends here in La Crosse. I started the day attending a Turkey Trot... A 5 mile Turkey Trot... yeah I know!!! It was tough, oh man was it tough. I had fallen the week before and banged up my knee.** To those who know me... you shouldn't be surprised I fell. To those who don't know me... everyone should be surprised how long I have been running without having a fall. ** Any who... My knee was still bruised and I pushed myself earlier in the week. I thought I was good to go. My knee pained me a little, so I did a lot more on and off running than usual.

 My friend that was with me was planning to run with me the whole way. However, I felt horrible I kept starting and stopping and ended up telling her to go ahead. I was super upset when I had to stop and walk the first time. Reason for that: There was no mile markers! I had thought I hadn't even gone a mile yet! Turns out it was way past a mile, which made me feel better. A lot of this running is a mental game. Knowing you made it to mile 2 and only have 3 to go is better than not knowing how much farther it will be. I pushed and finished in 1 hour and 2 minutes! I was super pumped to finish and see my friends at the finish line. I love that we are getting out there and doing races together.

I went home after the race to prepare my dessert for Thanksgiving. I made a "healthier" cheesecake made out of Greek yogurt and splenda and then a pumpkin fluff pie with sugar free pudding and pumpkin. I spent a wonderful vegetarian Thanksgiving with good friends and their little ones. It was one of the best days.

So now we are here... this week is when my gym at work closes for construction and my gym at home is still under construction... what is a girl to do? Well, I started the work out Insanity. Yeah, again, I know right?! Holy crap I am only day 2 in and I hurt. It is crazy, but I feel so good when I am done. I need to take more breaks, but I am sweating and kicking butt til the end. It is a new challenge and I look forward to sticking with it!


Chocolate Chip Candy Cane Cheesecakehttp://www.hungry-girl.com/images/printable/print-recipe.png
1/8th of cake: 187 calories, 3g fat, 378mg sodium, 29g carbs, <0.5g fiber, 24.5g sugars, 11.5g protein --PointsPlus® value 5*

Sure, candy canes are typically associated with December holidays... But this criminally delicious cheesecake is worth making TODAY!

16 oz. fat-free cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated white sugar, or HG Alternative
1 tsp. vanilla extract
6 oz. (about 2/3 cup) fat-free vanilla Greek yogurt, room temperature
1/2 cup liquid egg whites (about 4 egg whites), room temperature
2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 standard-sized candy canes or 8 mini candy canes, crushed
1/4 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
Optional topping: Fat Free Reddi-wip

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9-inch springform cake pan with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth with an electric mixer set to medium speed, 1 - 2 minutes.

Continue to beat while gradually adding yogurt, egg whites, and flour. Beat until thoroughly mixed, about 2 minutes.

Stir in half of the candy canes. Evenly pour mixture into the cake pan.

Sprinkle with chocolate chips. Bake until firm, 40 - 45 minutes.

Sprinkle with remaining crushed candy canes. Let cool completely. Refrigerate until chilled.

Release springform, slice, and serve!

Pumpkin Pudding
2 small boxes of instant vanilla pudding (can use sugar-free/fat-free if you like)
1 15 oz can pumpkin
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
2 C skim milk
8 oz (small container) light or fat-free cool whip
Combine all ingredients together, I use a hand mixer for everything except the cool whip – I fold that in. Chill for at least 15 min.
You could put this in a graham cracker crust if you would like



  1. I looooove Hungry Girl! I have her cookbook if you ever want to borrow it! :D

  2. So I have to bring some sort of a dessert to this shindig I am obligated to go to...and I says to myself, I says, "Candy Canes and cheesecake? Somebody has to have a recipe." A little google searching and here I am! Very excited, thanks for the share. Very inspiring blog as well, keep it up! Seasons Greetings from the Wish Laboratory!

    -Dr. Wishmael
    "It's always 11:11 here."

  3. Thank you! You will love the recipe. Happy Holidays!