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My Home "Gym", Super Saturday With Quinoa Granola Bars

My Home "Gym"
As I mentioned in yesterday's post, I had a request to do a post about my home gym. After mulling it over, I thought it was a really great idea. I can show everyone that you can indeed get really great results without having to spend a fortune on a home gym. Don't get me wrong of course, I would LOVE to have the money and room to have a treadmill, a nice weight machine set up, squat rack, even a barbell. Yes, you read that, no barbell (for now). I don't' even have a bar to do chin-ups or pull-ups. The ones that are supposed to fit every doorway do not in fact fit doorways built in 1890 apparently.

I must also say that I do have a gym membership that I almost only use for the cardio equipment. It was not until this January that I actually did weights at the gym. So, while I do have gym access, I still choose my home "gym" mostly out of convenience. 

Back to my gym: I also wish I had a much larger room. The room used for weights is rather tiny. In fact, It is too small to safely do step aerobics. I can do plyo, but no step or kickboxing. So I typically do my cardio in the living room downstairs and all weights in my "gym" room upstairs. Cumbersome at times because I do have to haul my aerobic step (which subs as my bench) up and down the stairs along with my stability ball, and yoga mat. However, you do you what you have to right?

So, with that being said, here is what I do have:
  • Aerobic step with and 8 total risers - 4 on each side gives me 12"
  • Slanted risers - allows me to create an incline or decline bench
  • A small top the size of a riser to create a high step
  • Stability ball - great for abs, use for preacher curls, even seated weight exercises
  • Resistance bands
  • Yoga mat
  • Dumbbells from 3 lb - 40 lb
  • 20 lb weighted vest - use to add more weight for leg work
  • Weight gloves - gives you a more comfortable and secure grip
  • Weighted gloves - allows me to micro load adding 1-1.5 lb extra 
  • Ankle weights - perfect for working the booty
  • Paper plates - use for slide back or side slide lunges (ouch)
  • Mirror - to watch form
  • Collection of DVDs
What does your home gym look like? 

I had another request recently for more pictures. I also received an email from a dear friend who reads my blog (but won't comment ahem) asking to see workout pictures. I told her I was super hesitant to post anything like that. But she talked me into it. She thinks that it could be inspiring to others perhaps. So, here's to hoping... I took these today after my workout (I'll post that below). My abs aren't looking so hot in the pics I realized, they were seriously looking much better while I was lifting weights and it doesn't help being super pale right now either.

Saturday Workout
Today was Week 2 Day 1 of my 8-week rotation. It is the same set up as last week only supersetting the exercises. I did 3 sets of 5 reps increasing the weights as well.

Superset #1
Chest - Flat bench dumbbell press
Back - Double arm row
Superset #2
Legs - Squats
Hamstrings - Deadlifts
Superset #3
Biceps - Hammer curls
Triceps - Lying dumbbell extensions
Superset #4
Legs - Step ups
Shoulders - Military press
I had a really good workout actually. I was able to increase all of the weights and it felt really good today. I followed up the weights with about 35 minutes from Cathe's Imax 2. I haven't done that workout in ages. It consists of 10 intervals that are made up of a short step routine and a blast. I got in a really good stretch after I was done.

Super Saturday
Today is my dad's birthday. I thought the family was going to be coming over, but plans changed. So, I took advantage of the absolutely gorgeous day we're having and sat outside and read for a bit while Jason went and rode his bike with a friend. It was so nice to just sit and relax and not worry about my huge to-do list, which I did end up getting around to of course. The laundry monster had to be tamed. I also wanted to try to make a quinoa granola bar, roast my kabocha, cook some wheat berries, and also cook some chickpeas to freeze. I managed to do all but the chickpeas.

I have been wanting to try to make my own granola bars for a while and started thinking about trying a quinoa granola bar. I came up with a Carrot Cake Quinoa Granola Bar. It does need a few tweaks of course, but this was my first shot at it. Most of the ingredients are not exact. Sorry, I was just adding a bit of this and a bit of that.

Carrot Cake Quinoa Granola Bars
1/2 - 3/4 cup dried quinoa (approximate)
1/2 cup rolled oats (approximate)
1/4 cup raisins (maybe more)
1 carrot, grated
Cinnamon and nutmeg to taste
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
2 tbsp ground flax seed mixed with 2 tbsp hot water
Molasses and agave nectar (have no clue how much I used)

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl, then transfer to a prepared baking dish (I used a baking non-stick spray). Bake at 350 for 50 minutes.
The taste was pretty good. They never got as firm as I thought they should. The next time I try these I will likely add in sesame seeds or perhaps chopped almonds and more vanilla, nutmeg and cinnamon, perhaps some clove. 

As of right now, I am sitting out on the patio finishing this post. The weather is absolutely gorgeous, and we will likely grill out for dinner. What? This is still undecided. I'll let you know tomorrow. I hope everyone is having a great weekend so far!


    1. LOVE this post, Heather! I totally feel like I know you even better now that I can visualize where you workout (most of the time) and those results, girl - you are rocking some hardcore muscles!! You should NOT be self conscious, you should be showing those guns off, my friend. :) Now I feel like I need to do a post on MY home gym, hmm. Perhaps. And perhaps pics of me working out, though I can hardly compete with your muscles, seriously!

    2. OMG, I am so shocked by the amount of equipment you have for the results you get. Seriously you have totalled shamed me (slinks away quietly to lick her wounds).

      Thanks for the this post you are now even more inspirational, if that was possible. ;-)

      What a great granola bar concept. I like where you are going with this. Enjoy grilling out tonight!

      talk to you later,

    3. You are so buff...holy crap!!! :) Love it! Happy birthday to your dad!!

    4. You look awesome girl! I'd kill for toned arms like yours. I guess I actually just need to incorporate some more weight training into my lfe:) Thanks for sharing!

    5. Jessica @ EatDrinkBreatheSweat I look forward to a gym post by you (with pics of course)!! I would love to see what you have set up.

      Alicia @ Vegan Epicurean You're too sweet! It was really hard posting those pics. The granola bars were really not too bad. Slightly chewy, but I think that worked very well to be honest. Hope you're having a good one!

      Thanks Kelly @ Healthy Living with Kelly !! *Blushing* I'll pass along the bday wish to my dad!

      Candice @ ChiaSeedMe Thanks girl! I am a definite advocate for adding in weights! I hope this post shows that you don't have to have special equipment at least.

    6. abs schmabs! yours look great! i understand though---i rarely think my abs look good enough! love your at home gym!

    7. Wow, you look amazing! I wish I had your arms. I have no muscle in my arms, whatsover. Your lower back looks great too!

      And I want one of those bars very badly.

    8. Lisa @ I'm an Okie glad I'm not the only one who doubts the abs!

      Thanks so much Emily @ Sugar Plum ! I just had to have another nibble on the bars this morning. I am really liking the slightly chewy texture and the crunch from the quinoa.

    9. FAVE POST EVER!!!!!!!!!!!

      First, love the home gym, what you have, why, etc. this is PERFECT for me right now! chock full of this stuff and I can score I think some barebones essentials. love seeing what you have

      The Dessert bars. Awesome!! The reason they never got as firm is b/c carrots have a ridic moisture content and every time i try to bake/unbake w/ them, i end up really having to bump the dry ingreds. Just a thought...

      And the pics of you!!!!!! I LOVE THEM!!!!!!! Not only are you beautiful, you're buff as hell :)

    10. Wow, you look fantastic, not that I am surprised! Your results are fantastic, especially with a limited gym! I have a pretty good room set up, just a little bit more than you, but basically very similar! It is amazing what you can accomplish with a few strategic pieces, eh?! :)

    11. Wow, you are gorgeous! and so buff! :)

      those bars sound awesome.

    12. You look so beautiful and FIT! Girl I love you and your dedication to your precious bod!!

      I love having a gym at home and makes it so easy to fit in my workout time between working from home too. It is so nice!! I hate the treadmill, but love that I have it! am making these bars!


    13. I love workout pictures ... don't hesitate to post them!! ; )

      Your quinoa bars sound good. I have a hard time knowing how to make something with quinoa that's not the same old, same old, so I might have to try something like that.

    14. Averie @ Loves Veggies and Yoga You're too kind! I totally built up what I have piece by piece. After all was said and done, I like the slight chewiness of the bars. I've almost polished them off!

      Jolene @ To Be Determined I totally agree, you seriously don't have to have a full on gym - just dedication (and tons of DVDs). I'd love to hear what your gym consists of.

      Allison @ Eat Clean Live Green Thank you for your compliment! I'm really terrible at accepting compliments regarding me, now food, whole other story ;-)

      Hey Kris @ iheartwellness totally with you on the treadmill. I hate running on them, but sure wish I had one. Would love to know what equipment you have. Let me know if you try the granola bar recipe and what you change. I seriously want to know those things LOL!

      Hi Lesley @ Lesley Lifting Life I love quinoa but like you, get tired of the same old same old. They really are super versatile.

    15. Love your home gym. Nice that you have everything you need

    16. Love your home gym!
      You look great! Good for you for posting pics. I wanted to do before and after pics for my bikini bound challenge but couldn't build up the nerve!

    17. Thanks for being such a fitness inspiration! I want to get into shape and I need all of the inspiration that I can get :)

    18. Gelareh @ Nutritious Foodie it is definitely nice and convenient - sort of excuse proofs workouts too!

      Kristen @ The Swanky Dietitian Thank you! You totally should have taken before pics!!

      Sarah @ The Ordinary Vegetarian I truly do hope that I can inspire others in some way, shape, or form. So your comment means a lot!

    19. You look amazing. Love the back muscles, the little tuck in for the spine is my favorite part of athletic builds. Going to try messing around with your granola bar recipe...I have been craving some like crazy but I hate buying manufactured snacks!

    20. Thanks so much for stopping by Lindsay and thank you for the compliment! This was my first try at making a granola bar. I think it turned out not half bad. ;-)


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