****Update – this blog has moved to


Thank y’all for the birthday wishes – it was a fantastic weekend!

Friday evening I had all intentions of going to the gym post happy hour to get in a BFL lower body workout (gym doors were jammed shut in the AM – so I went for a 6 mile run instead). Those intentions were quickly lost as I was playing catch up with folks I hadn’t seen in a while and the Rangers started winning big. In Dallas, it’s a big deal the Rangers have made it this far, and I’m sure Jerry Jones is jealous that his supposed superbowl football team is rapidly losing attention with their less than stellar performance as the underdog baseball team has made it to the world series.

Saturday was filled with errands and cleaning – remember mention of that to-do list last week? Well, while really scratching up that list, time was lost before guests had arrived for the birthday dinner. We drove out to Ft. Worth to chow at Joe T Garcia’s and afterwards ventured over to Sundance Square to find a sports bar to watch OU lose (sigh). None the less, we had a great time.

I had a late start Sunday and after all the running around on Saturday my plans were to sit down and watch a movie, then meet J to workout. Well J called me – we threw out our plans to work out to meet his Aunt, Uncle, and best friend from Tulsa who was in town for dinner and to pick up piece of furniture. That piece of furniture ended up monopolizing our evening trying to figure out how to either get it to the second floor of J’s townhome or to get it out of the stairwell – it was more of a logistical challenge than anticipated.  The boys sure got their workout in…I did my best to stay out of the way.

Should I regret not making it to the gym – no – but should I hold myself accountable for at least those BFL/HIIT sessions I fell short of this week – yes. I made a commitment to myself to fulfill my 12 week challenge, I may not always be able to get in all three HIIT sessions or three training sessions per week, but I make sure to pick up the missed workouts when I can, and document progress accordingly.

I am that committed and dedicated to my goals. I don’t give 100%, not even 110% – it’s at least 150%. I fight for my goals to be accomplished. If I can conquer such small feats, if I can start by pocketing small aspirations – I will have the confidence and skill to deal with greater hardship and more enduring challenges to come.

Rest is a great gift, and I won’t let working out get in the way of living – however I am ready to get back to work in the gym and make the most of this Monday.

What are your goals? Are you on track to tackle them – or have you fallen wayside? How do you plan on holding yourself accountable?


****Update – this blog has moved to



Today I turn 24. Seems so strange – I feel like I just turned 18 yesterday.


I still have mountains to move and a world to conquer.

Before I get to that, I have a cupcake to enjoy…

PS The Rangers are going to the world series!

Crossing Off the To Do List

***Moved to http://mb-vb.com, looking into why google reader is being technologically challenging, thanks for all the support, please email if you’re having any problems/issues***


I thought September flew by fast, but October seems to have been even more of a whirlwind. I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if I woke up tomorrow morning to the smell of Turkey and Pumpkin Pie (yup the one holiday that is all about food is my favorite). I just feel like I haven’t had one moment to sit down, take a deep breath, and enjoy a 5 minute mental vacation since July. I am tired. The to-do list that was once do-able has now become a nightly 20 minute review and discussion with J to start knocking things off, like finally getting around to hanging up pictures

I have to give credit to J though, not only is he the best boyfriend in the world, the man did the unimaginable – he knocked off a portion a HUGE chunk of the list yesterday. He fixed things around his place, cleaned, ran many errands, even got in a workout and studied a bit! I felt bad because I wish I could have helped him more – but what a stress relief to really only have a bit more cleaning and the fun stuff on the to do list left like picking up Halloween candy and a costume, celebrating a birthday :) …oh there is a trip I promised J I would make to the post office (ehhhh) and the daunting task of bathing a 92 98 lbs stinkin’ fatty.

[Sometimes it’s nice to know I am not the only one that hates getting on the scale – Leo does not appreciate J picking him up to weigh themselves]

What a look…

So back to conquering that to-do list, when I say review and discussion, this is what happens:

1) We list everything we have to do out

2) Prioritize the list

3) Determine what tasks each of us can do (J- pick up red velvet cake, me – post office ehhh) and what tasks require both of us (filtering beer)

4) Assign a date

5) Anticipate the unexpected will occur

The simple tasks help us efficiently conquer the to-do list with as less stress as possible. We live very busy lives, but we work hard to play hard.

Are you a list maker? What are your tips and tricks for getting stuff done?

Here’s something to cross of the list – workouts!! Cha, cha, cha! As promised yesterday, here ya go:



No time to run, but enough time for some Back and Shoulder w/J

Exercise Rep #
Shrugs on Smith 3 sets x 30 reps 20#, 50#, 50#
BB Overhead Shoulder Press 3 sets – 12 reps, 15 reps, 18 reps Bar
J didn’t have a name for this exercise – but held plate  with straight arms between a 90 degree and 180 degree angle 3 sets x 10 reps 10#
Pull Over Machine 3 sets x 50 reps 20# – I go really light with the # and high with the reps on this machine for a purpose – with all the pull ups I do I’m being careful not to “bulk” up the muscle
Lower Back Machine 3 sets x 20 reps 70#
Lat Pull Down Machine 3 set x 20 reps 50#
Bicep Curl Drop Set; 10 reps, 10 reps, 20 reps 50#, 30#, 15#


Lots of time for cardio, (82 mins, 7 mi) but with J working late we didn’t hit the gym for weights or yoga. I would have gone to the gym solo, but I had some True Blood to keep me entertained via the treadmill. I am trying to knock out the rest of Season 2 because Prince of Persia will shortcut to the top of the Netflix mail queue – I take such threats seriously from the bf.


Thursday I slept in what little I could and pushed my BFL workout to the evening. Since I had a spot, check out what I did on the bench press. For the record, if I can do it, so can you (with doctor approval disclaimer, be smart – you get the point)!

Muscle Group Exercise Reps # Rest Intensity
Chest BB Bench Press 12 0# 30 s 5
    10 5# 30 s 6
    8 10# 30 s 7
    6 20# 30 s 8
High   12 10# 0 9
Point DB Fly 12 20# 2m 9
Shoulders Arnolds 12 16# 30 s 5
    10 20# 30 s 6
    8 24# 30 s 7
    6 30# 30 s 8
High   12 24# 0 9.5
Point Bent Over Fly 12 10# 2m 9.5
Back Lat Pull Down (Machine) 12 35# 30 s 5
    10 50# 30 s 6
    8 65# 30 s 7
    6 80# 30 s 8
High   12 65# 0 9.5
Point Row (Machine) 12 45# 2m 9.5
Triceps Skull Crushers 12 15# 30 s 5
    10 20# 30 s 6
    8 24# 30 s 7
    6 30# 30 s 8
High   12 24# 0 9.5
Point Tricep Extension 12 12# 2m 9
Biceps DB Curls 12 15# 30 s 5
    10 20# 30 s 6
    8 24# 30 s 7
    6 30# 30 s 8
High   12 24# 0 9.5
Point BB Curl 12 20# 2m 9.75
***Biceps DB Curls 4 40# - 10

I know I’ve been doing screen shots, but I inserted the workout as a table so y’all could click the links to machines I used.


This breakfast rocked – had to share the kraut.

Sunny side up egg, kraut, red onion, mushrooms

For the road…and for the record I’ll just brew the illy myself…disappointment in a can

The salad I made for my co-worker was such a hit, that another co-worker gave me $3 to make the most of my leftover produce and make him a salad as well, haha.

Romaine, Spinach, Granny Smith Apple, Sauteed Red Onion, Bacon, Walnuts

Once again, my lunch was rather boring leftover soup and an easy onion, tomato, dressing side salad. However, I got a special treat. Remember mention of A.T. – maker of the Monster Sandwich? This is his second foodie appearance this week with a treat that is very near and dear to my heart.

Salted Carmel PB Crunch, Dark Chocolate, and Strawberry Gelato <3

Still drooling over that gelato. A.T. you are the best.

It’s okay to make the soup and salad combo for dinner as well? Instead of leftovers it was Italian Salad with Pesto Tofu and Potato Leek Soup.

No more gelato – but a glass of red wine and some dark chocolate made a sufficient substitute.

Have a great Friday.

P.S. I’ll share some chocolate with anyone that is willing to go to the post office and give Leo a bath for me.

Got My Lunch Packed Up

***Please don’t forget to update your readers – MB,VB has a new home at http://mb-vb.com***

My co-workers are hooked on Subway breakfast. To me – the last adjective I would use to describe Subway is "healthy", not even as an alternative to fast food. Subway is fast food. Google Subway ingredients – you’ll find nothing short of sodium and high fructose corn syrup (oh joy…). There was much intense discussion and I agreed to bring lunch for a co-worker – real food.

I didn’t want to go full health food hippy on him, so with a little help brainstorming with J – we agreed on our favorite salad to pack. I packed a couple of sides/snacks as well.

Salad fit for a man – Romaine, Spinach, Tomato, Red Onion, S&P, Fresh Low Sodium Bacon, Blue Cheese Dressing (Private Selection from Kroger? Told you J helped)

Mary’s Gone Crackers, Red Bell Peppers, Fancy Munster Cheese

Granny Smith Apple, Almond Butter with Cinnamon

Dried Cranberries, Dried Blueberries, 85% Dark Chocolate

Packed up and ready to go this morning – co-worker was really impressed and get this – he had never had Almond Butter before! Oh we health nuts take such matters for granted :) My lunch was leftover stir fry from Monday – nothing special, but hit the spot.

While packing everything up, I made quite a unique breakfast. I picked up some Bob’s Mill Grits a few weeks ago and Karin got me hooked on the idea of sweet grits.

Grits with Vanilla, 2 Egg Whites, Pumpkin Pie Spice topped with 1/2 Banana and AB

Yesterday’s breakfast was worth mentioning as well. I was in a hurry but threw a few things together, I think I gave new definition to a grab-n-go breakfast.

Near empty Apple Butter jar with Chobani Greek Yogurt, 1/2 banana, Uncle Sam’s cereal, AB

Work has been super, especially when you hit the road while the sun is still coming up.

Good thing I always have a sweet someone to welcome me home before I hit the gym or the treadmill.

Also J was in charge of dinner this evening. He came home bearing gifts from Whole Foods including Lobster Bisque.

It’s getting late – will post my workouts tomorrow. J and I are up to no good anyway, the beer brewing hobby is calling our name and must take some measurements to see if we need to filter the brew.

Told ya!

Rita Rocks Rockin’ Recipes

***I know there were some technical difficulties yesterday – but looks like the blog’s host server is back to operating smoothly. Please visit http://mb-vb.com to check out the new domain.***

Let’s just say when it comes to my cooking skills – I get it from my mama. From Mexico with love:

Queso Fundido

..straight from Monterrey, Mx using only the freshest local ingredients!

Primarily, Oaxaca cheese and fresh chorizo. Oaxaca is similar to mozzarella and chorizo is a form of Mexican sausage.  I cooked and drained the sausage.  Next, I sautéed a bit of onion and garlic in the drippings until caramelized.  Added the sausage back in with onions and garlic to blend together.  Then layered shredded Oaxaca, sausage mixture x 2 and baked in a 425 degree oven (204 celsius) for 20 min until all melted and bubbly.  Serve with fresh tortillas and enjoy.

It was delicious!

Portobello Mushrooms

Here is a recipe that one of the locals showed P (Dad) how to make.  It starts with Portabello mushrooms – one for each serving.  Sprinkle with Maggi sauce (mexican version of worchestire sauce but better!) , then slice your favorite cheese and place on top . We like to use Oaxaca cheese. Place on grill or in a skillet and let the mushrooms cook and the cheese melt.   One cheese is melty, P puts a pan over the top to let the Portabellos continue to cook thru.  These are fantastic, healthy and fast.

***I’ve moved! I’ve moved! Please visit the new MB,VB at http://mb-vb.com.***


Today I had a special request – that a “Monster Man-wich” was blog worthy. Typically my packed lunches take the office envy spotlight with my large “Usual” Salads, however this co-work often rivals my salads with his sandwiches, pita chips, and fruit parfaits (I’ll take credit for getting him hooked on those…)

Behold the Eats

A.T. Monster Man-Wich


“Peppercorn Turkey, Olive-oil based mayo, Basil pesto spread, Spinach, Tomatoes, Yellow bell pepper, Feta cheese, 12-grain bread (DAS A LOTTA GRAINS!)”

Did the Sandwich Win?

My Lame-o Lunch in comparison – Romaine, Tomato, Leftover Kale Chips, Mustard, Avocado



Let’s rewind to the quick AM workout


Had a 7:30 appointment at the dealership so short and sweet BFL Lower 25:12 min.


Had to leave the house at by 7:00am so breakfast was in the dark.


Sweet Scramble

4 Egg Whites, Vanilla, Pumpkin Pie Spice scrambled in skillet, topped with AB, Almost Vanilla? Galaxy Granola, Apple Butter


This is better.



Work, Work, Work. Car picked up from dealership. To J’s townhome for a visit. J requests (with a please) I take Leo to the mailbox with me. Since a “ride” is way more exciting than a “walk”. Apparently a “ride” was not as fun as a “drive”.


I kid. But the beast moved from passenger seat to behind the wheel – talk about guilty.

IMG_0438 Really Mom – this is cute.


Back to where he belongs!

IMG_0446 Back home we explain to J our trip to the mailbox was just so much more fun in the car. J is not impressed with either of us being just lazy bums.


Simply a beast.

But not as big of a beast as the treadmill after our quick mail box excursion. Netflix came in, and watching True Blood while knocking out 4 miles seemed like a good multitasking idea. :)


PM Cardio – 4.71mi apprx 50 mins.


Noticed I slowed down a bit half way through – my shin was acting up so I took the speed down a notch.

After my run it was back to work, work, work and preparing dinner and the Monday Night Snack Plate.


Stir Fry

I’ve been avoiding cutting up the Red Onion, haven’t felt like shedding the tears. I will own being lazy today after the ride to the mailbox and putting the onion back in the fridge like so:



Red Onion, Brussel Sprouts, Kraut, Mustard, Artichoke, and Bacon :)

Snack Plate


Munster and Smoked Gouda Cheese, “Sweet Potato Things” ( What J called the Roasted Sweet Potato Slices), Honey Dijon Rice Chips, Sahale Nuts, Strip of Bacon


Go Rangers!

Peace Out Girl Scouts.


****Update – this blog has moved to



Guess what I finally polished off?

My old wordpress domain (more details below) and the fudge.



Dear Fudge –

It has been real. Your recipe is a keeper – and I’m sure Santa will probably want a piece of you come Christmas.

Thanks for all the great breakfast.





Breakfast really has not been the same…



My absence has been due to the fact I’ve been busy packing and moving to http://mb-vb.com. There’s still a lot of unpacking to do – but hopefully y’all will enjoy the new layout, pages, material, etc. I’ve been working hard – but if there’s anything y’all would like to see, or I’m missing – please email me at mangiarebuonoviverebello [at] gmail [dot] com.


Tuesday was a rest day – but I made sure to exercise my Facebook interest by seeing the Social Network. J and I agree it’s a 7 out of 10 (1 being the worst, 10 being the best). I think the movie was the reason why I was dreaming about programming code all week like the nerd I am.

Wednesday was Back and Beginner’s Yoga followed by a walk/run with the boys.

2010_10_17_back 2mi walk/run

Thursday AM: BFL Lower/ HITT warm up/cool down. PM:6mi on the treadmill while knocking out some True Blood episodes.

Stairmaster HIIT



Stairmaster HIIT


Friday – another rest day – J surprised me with an early birthday gift – we went and saw Shrek the Musical. :)

Saturday was a 4mi run outside followed up with the push-up, pull-up circuit.

2010_10_17_pushpull 10 minutes stretching and abs.

Sunday I warmed up with a HIIT session. Afterwards, I talked J into a hybrid of his workout and my BFL Upper workout I had planned but had yet to knock out this week. I opted not to do any back or chest BFL exercises since we gave those muscles a good workout with the push-up/pull-up circuit.




 Followed by:

Pull Downs with Bar & Underneath Grip (palms up) 3 sets x 20 reps (10#,15#,20#)

“Holds” to work on REAL Dips 3 sets x 15s

Tricep Extension Machine Drop Set 30 reps @ 40# (too light), 25 reps @ 20#, 20 reps @ 10#

Walk w/ Leo 2mi


Now time to start this week! Ciao!


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