Children’s museum, zoo, + water park = tired and happy kids

afitmess
August 24, 2016

Hey there. Hope you are having a great week. We are staying busy in Surfside and having a fun time. We’ve gotten into a nice groove here where we get out with all the kids in the morning, come back to the house for lunch, have nap/quiet time, and then hit the pool in the afternoon.

 

Here’s a glimpse of some of the fun we’ve had lately – 

 

The Children’s Museum of South Carolina 

The Children’s Museum of South Carolina is an interactive learning experience for young kids. The facility is well over 10,000 square feet and has dozens of exhibits that promote and stimulate self-discovery. The girls really enjoyed themselves!

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There was a grocery store that included a register and a scanner. There was also a garden where the kids could dig and plant vegetables.

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One section had various categories of animals and food. Maddie liked the farm animals…and the cupcakes. In fact, she ended up carrying the cupcake around with her the entire time we were there (can you spot them in the pictures?).

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There was also a neat little theater where the kids could perform puppet shows.

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Showing off and dancing.

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I loved the Pizza Hut kitchen. What a fun idea!

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There was a dentist’s office, ambulance, and nurse’s station set up for the kids to play in.

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Ha – a life-sized Lite Brite! Children of the 80s will remember this one.

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Giant legos, a construction site, foam blocks, and a log cabin.

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There was a lot to see and do at the Museum. I’d recommend checking it out if you are ever in the Myrtle Beach area.

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Waccatee Zoo

The Waccatee Zoo is a nature-themed, privately owned zoo. It contains over 100 species of exotic and domestic animals and 50 acres of viewing area. It’s very different from traditional zoos because you really feel like you are out in the wild at times. There’s tons of winding trails that you can wander down. In total we ended up walking over a mile and a half! I was super proud of the girls for being such good troopers about this.

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The zoo is a natural wildlife santucary for many types of birds. There were turkeys, chickens, and peacocks just wandering around with us.

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Maddie’s not sure what to think of this!

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The deer came right up to us and ate from our cups.

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The peacocks were really beautiful. I wish we had seen one open it’s wings, but I think they only do that when they are trying to mate. Ha!

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We bought little cups of food for all the kids to feed the animals. Some animals we could hand feed and others we had to drop down a tube. I think this one was a donkey.

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Maddie leading the way.

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Still smiling after walking for over an hour!

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Myrtle Waves Water Park

Myrtle Waves is South Carolina’s largest water park. It has over 20 acres of pools, slides, and water attractions for all ages. We got in as part of an end of summer deal so our tickets were extremely affordable. And the girls had a ball!

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My dad and Maddie gearing up for fun!

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These water slides were no joke – they were like mini roller coasters!

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All of the kids loved the saturation station. The water was icy cold.

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There was also a fun little baby pool that the kids could wade around in and play.

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This girl is such a daredevil. She wanted to go on everything!

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Maddie was more cautious and stuck with mama most of the time.

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Awesome wave pool. We had to drag Ashlyn out of it – she didn’t want to leave!

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All of these activities mean we end up with good sleepers each night. 🙂

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Have a great Thursday!

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Total body TRX workout + the best portable fitness gear

afitmess
August 23, 2016
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I was reminded recently on vacation why I LOVE using a TRX suspension trainer when I discovered that the resort’s “gym” was actually a tiny room with a treadmill, elliptical, and stationary bike. I was disappointed to see they didn’t have any free weights or equipment. Rather than skip my workout I grabbed my TRX and within minutes began a total body workout that got my heart rate up and left me a sweaty mess.

 

What is a TRX?

 

The TRX is a suspension training tool that was originally developed by a Navy SEAL. It relies on gravity and body weight to promote strength and balance. Every movement requires you to engage and stabilize your core, making it a challenging and effective workout that anyone can do. There are literally hundreds of exercises that can be done with a TRX and the extreme ease with which it can be set up eliminates any excuse for not working out. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned athlete, you can get a total body workout done just about anywhere.

 

What’s to love about the TRX?

 

The TRX may be my favorite piece of equipment, not only due to it’s portability and simple set up, but because it’s extremely challenging. The movements force you to keep your core and muscles engaged (for balance) so even when you are doing an upper body movement, you are still working your entire body! Plus, the TRX requires you to focus on your form which is a key part of any resistance training program.  And the suspension straps allow you to adjust your position to make the exercises more (or less) challenging.

 

Some of the benefits of TRX training include:

  • Portable and easy to travel with (you can easily throw it in your bag)
  • Can be used anywhere – a gym, hotel, or home (all you need is a door)
  • Builds muscle and strengthens core
  • Unlimited number of exercises that can be done
  • Perfect for all fitness levels

 

There are tons of TRX workouts available online. YouTube and Pinterest are great places to find free programs. The program I designed below is a total body workout that alternates between upper and lower body movements. Repeat each super set three times before moving on to the next super set. Please don’t take any rest in between the movements. The exercises can be scaled by moving your feet closer or father away from the wall. You may need to experiment with your positions a bit.

 

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In my opinion, a TRX suspension trainer is a worthwhile investment for anyone who wants to incorporate a total body workout into their fitness routine. It’s great for people who travel or for those with limited space. I am totally in love with mine! There are lots of options available for purchase, depending on your needs. I use this one (available on Amazon Prime!) and I have been very happy with it!

 

Do you have a TRX? What are your favorite workouts?

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Hello from Surfside + last week’s workouts

afitmess
August 22, 2016

Happy Monday! Just a quick post today from the beach to share a few pics and last week’s workouts.

 

Our ride down went super smooth which I attribute to having my nieces take turns sitting with the girls in the back. Snacks and movies also helped!

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The weather here has been pretty amazing – we’re expecting sun all week long!

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The condo we’re renting is really nice. My sister’s family is staying downstairs and we have the upstairs unit. This is perfect for us – we can easily go back and forth between the units.

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My sister and brother-in-law are great cooks! We’ve been having some awesome meals so far! Cousin love.

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So far we’ve spent some time at the beach and the pool. Ashlyn’s my little dare devil and just wants to jump in the waves.

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While Madison is content playing in the sand. Ha – that look on her face. She’s nervous for her sister.

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We have been having a blast so far!

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The internet is a bit spotty here so I may not be posting as much as usual. Plus I want to soak up as much time with my family as possible.

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Last week’s workouts

Monday

Orangetheory class

Tuesday

REST

Wednesday

dumbbell curls 3 x 10

Then 3 rounds:

  • 10 alternating hammer curls
  • 10 dips
  • 10 skull crushers
  • 10 overhead tricep extensions
  • 10 curls to front lower
  • 25 bicycle crunches
  • 10 v-ups
  • 10 reverse crunches

 

Then a quick chipper:

  • 50 jump squats
  • 40 sit ups
  • 30 burpees
  • 20 dips
  • 10 push ups to side planks
  • 20 supermans
  • 30 mountain climbers
  • 40 sit ups
  • 50 jump lunges

 

Repeat!

 

Thursday

Orangetheory class

 

Friday 

run 1/2 mile then:

3 rounds:

  • 12 hand release pushups
  • 12 one arm press on bosu ball (I used a 25# DB)

3 rounds:

  • 10 tricep pushups on a medicine ball
  • 12 tricep pullover on the bench (I used a 20# DB)

3 rounds:

  • 12 DB tricep kickbacks (I used 15# DBs)
  • 20 jump squats with a medicine ball press

 

Saturday

Orangetheory class

 

Sunday 

REST – at the beach!

 

Have a great week!

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My favorite gluten-free travel snacks for toddlers

afitmess
August 19, 2016

Happy Friday my friends! Today I’m sharing my favorite travel snacks for toddlers. All of these are easy to transport whether you are traveling by car or plane. They are (mostly) nutritious gluten-free goodies that are sure to please your kiddos. I tend to be a bit more lenient with diet – both for myself and my kids – when I’m on vacation so I don’t stress too much about what they’re eating, but I try to make healthy choices most of the time.

 

Here are some of our favorite on the go snacks:

 

GoGo Squeez applesauce on the go

Applesauce packs a healthy dose of vitamin C and fiber. While it contains mostly sugar, the sugar found in applesauce is naturally occurring fructose (very different from table sugar). Try mixing this with a little nut butter for a protein-packed snack.

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Cheerios

Cheerios makes for a crunchy, low mess snack. They are high in fiber, low in sugar, and fortified with vitamins and minerals. I’ll toss some Cheerios in a snack cup with some dried fruit and cashews and it’s like a toddler trail mix!

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Sun-Maid Raisins

Raisins = “Nature’s candy.” <- insert about one thousand eye rolls. In all honesty, my kids LOVE raisins and so do I. They make for a sweet and healthy treat, plus they are packed with iron and calcium. I love the mini boxes because it helps with portion control.

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Skinny Pop Original Popcorn

I love Skinny Pop so much! It’s a fun treat for the girls to have popcorn, but I do need to monitor them so they don’t go overboard. I’ve started to hide it at the very top of our cupboards because the girls have been sneaking into the kitchen to eat it ALL DAY LONG. I really like the light taste and slightly salty flavor of the regular Pop.

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Rudi’s Gluten free bread

AB + J sandwiches are perfect for travel. I usually spread almond butter on one side and coconut oil and jelly on the other side. Occasionally, I’ll mash up some raspberries in place of the jelly. Mmmmm delicious!

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Yumearth Organics Tropical Gummy Fruits

These are the definitely not a snack, but they do make for nice healthier treats when the girls want something sweet. Okay, I have been known to dip into these, too. They are delicious!

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Justin’s Classic Almond Butter Squeeze Pack

I love Justin’s squeeze packs. They are absolutely ideal for travel. The packs are so easy to toss in your bag, carry-on, or purse. I’ll usually spread this on a slice of bread or a rice cake for a quick snack. And the girls like to dip carrots or banana chips into it.

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LARABARs

With nearly 20 different flavors, there’s a LARABAR for everyone. What makes them so fantastic is that they are made with all natural, whole foods. Each bar is made with only a few ingredients. They’re all minimally processed and totally nutritious. Plus every flavor is amazing! Trust me…I’ve had just about all of them.

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Other things we love for travel

  • Nuts – especially cashews and walnuts since they are a bit softer
  • Plantain chips or dried unsweetened banana chips
  • All the fruit – apples, bananas, grapes, avacados
  • Veggies: sliced cucumbers and carrots
  • Hardboiled eggs
  • Honey nut granola bars

 

What are some of your favorite toddler travel snacks?

 

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