I don’t know if you have watched or heard about Sandra Lee’s Food Network Show, Semi-Homemade Cooking, but I thought it was an apt title for today’s meal. While Sandra typically combines fresh food with store-bought stuff, I unfortunately didn’t do exactly what she did, but close enough
In an effort to clean out the pantry and the refrigerator, I decided to mix my two favorite things together for a healthy and very filling meal: Trader Joe’s Soy Chorizo and Amy’s Black Bean soup.
Now I have to be honest… cooking soy chorizo is kinda gross. You have to cut off the casing and, especially if you’re a klutz like me, the actual soy chorizo stuff falls apart in your hands, leaving your hands/the counter/the floor/the cats covered in red coloring. Definitely unappetizing…
I eventually got it into a pan along with a tablespoon of coconut oil, fried it up, and added half of this batch to half a can of Amy’s Black Bean Soup. You can use more soup or more soy chorizo if you like, but I find soy chorizo to be really spicy… plus I wanted leftovers for the next day
On further thought, you really could make this legitimately ‘Sandra Lee’ approved and add some fresh spinach or herbs to this dish. Make it your own! I promise, it is super delicious, very filling, and incredibly easy to make. The only ‘mess’ was the pan and the cutting board I used to cut off the soy chorizo casing. Super facil! (Super easy!)
On to awesome topic number two… today I went to Hula Hoop Cardio! A local fitness studio offers $5 drop in classes. The classes they offer include Zumba, Hip Hop Cardio, ‘Butts and Guts’ (haven’t been to that yet!), Zumba Toning, and now, Hula Hoop Cardio!
I had heard of hula hooping as a form of cardio, and several years back, I bought a couple of hula hoops. The roommates and I used them pretty frequently at first, but eventually the two other roommates got bored and stopped. I continued to hula hoop around the house intermittently, but when I moved away for grad school, the hula hoops got packed away. Needless to say, I didn’t think I’d really get back into hooping…
Enter: this class. When I saw in an email from the studio that they would be offering it this month, I got so excited. Let’s be honest, I also read this article in Shape magazine a while back about Marisa Tomei hula hooping, and I thought, ‘damn, I wish I were Marisa Tomei! She’s so cool! I should get a hula hoop.’ (No joke, this is in part why I bought a hula hoop all those years ago…) But back to fitness…
Why is hula hooping a good exercise?
- Other than being fun (thus upping the likelihood that you’ll stick to it, obviously a huge factor in exercise and weight loss), hula hooping doesn’t require any fancy coordination, nor does it require pricy equipment. If you can move your hips, you can hula hoop. (source)
- Hula hooping burns as many calories as step aerobics, boot camps, or brisk walking. (source)
- If you use a weighted hoop, not only will hula hooping be easier, but you will also burn more calories than using a store-bought hula hoop (that said, I used a regular plastic hula hoop and still got a killer work out). (source)
After today’s class, I am more determined to (one day) purchase a weighted hula hoop– they only had one, and a lady grabbed it before I did. She also was the best hooper in the whole class, and now that I know that weighted hoops are easier… well then…
I had a ton of fun and right now, my quads are sore– we did squats and lunges (yes, while hooping!) in addition to some dancing and walking around. I wasn’t the best hooper, but I was pretty darn good! The most important thing is that I am excited to go to class again next week (and I burned 400 calories.) Win win!
Have you ever tried hula hooping, either for fun or in a class setting? Would you be interested in hula hooping, or do you think it’s just a fad? (Definitely a possibility!)