Early Rise

Whenever I have a lot to accomplish during the day, I make a list and schedule ahead of time. Planning my whole day has worked for me when it comes to time management.

This weekend I have a lot of catching up to do…serious catching up on my studies. The month of September was filled with a lot of socializing, travel, weddings and local outings.

So I will have to get back on my regular studying schedule in October.

Am I the only one that wakes up at 6am on Saturdays? Sometimes I feel like I’m on the same schedule as our senior citizen neighbors. But I do feel productive when I wake up early during the weekend. I also love the feeling of having accomplished a few things before the rest of the world wakes up.

My early morning breakfast today included

  • 1/3 C Trader Joe’s Toasted Oat Bran
  • Cooked with 1/2 C water and 1/3 C almond milk
  • Mixed in at the end – 1/2 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder
  • Toppings: 1 C fresh strawberries and granola for crunch


Adding vanilla flavored protein powder made my Oat Bran mix taste like Strawberries N Cream. I use Sun Warrior protein powder today.

Double creaminess.

IMG_3785 IMG_3787

While I was going thru mail, I received a notice from 24Hour Fitness regarding their lawsuit settlement. The lawsuit was about charging members additional fees after they cancelled their membership. I wasn’t charged extra but my company probably did, our employee benefits used to include paid gym membership.

I am getting 3 months free gym membership. Yippee! That’s 3 months savings for me, every bit of savings help these days!


I took a Body Pump class at the gym after breakfast. The class kicked my butt today, my legs and arms were shaking only half way thru the class. I feel comfortable with my form so I increased my weights and that added intensity and I definitely felt the burn. My heart rate was up the whole time.

If your local gym offers Body Pump class, I recommend you check it out. It makes working out very fun and it goes by really fast. It’s an hour of strength training that is choreographed with fun music. Plus, whenever you are lifting weights and using the correct form, you engage your abdominal muscles at the same time.

Our class was also taped today for some internal video promo for 24Hr Fitness, I volunteered to participate and signed a waiver. I don’t know if I’ll ever see it but I just wanted to support the instructor with my participation.

After Body Pump class, I came home and made protein smoothie in a bowl. I made it really thick so I can scoop it out of the bowl because it’s fun and I wanted to have granola again.

In this bowl is blended frozen 1/2 banana, frozen 6 sweet cherries, 1/2 scoop Vega shake powder, 1 cup ice, almond milk and protein powder.


Definitely hit the spot.

Insert a few hours of studying. Tax laws + tax laws = headache

Lunch food was quick and lazy. When I am on a roll with studying, I don’t like to step away from it unless my stomach begs for food.

Open face sandwich with toasted Earthgrain whole wheat thin buns + Egg salad (2 boiled eggs, hummus, mustard and fresh black pepper).

Topped with black beans and avocado. On the side are sweet red bell peppers (I am addicted to these peppers from Costco).


Easy clean up with disposable plate.


I prefer open faced sandwiches because I can put a lot of toppings on it. It’s more fun to eat 2 pieces of bread separately than 1 huge sandwich.

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More studying in store for me today. Hope you are having a good start to your weekend!

I hope I’ll have time to bake this weekend. I am craving muffins. I am thinking of chocolate and pumpkin!!


  1. That’s so awesome that you get three months for free at the gym! I make due with the workout room at my apartment complex, but would really love to have a real gym again. The weight machines alone would get me excited… lol

  2. squigglefloey says:

    What a hard worker! My weekends are also generally taken up by studying and a systematic running of errands here and there. But thus is the life of a generally stressed out student! What are you studying for? Best of luck 🙂

    • Hi Floey, thanks for asking.

      I am working to get my CPA (Certified Public Accountant) license. Since I work full time and getting my license at the same time, I study very early in the morning, late at night. and weekends The study hours have been very demanding and I study for months to take a 4 hour exam. I need to pass 4 exams to get my license. Slowly but surely I’m getting there 🙂

  3. oh dang, i’ve gone through that costco bell pepper addiction phase 😉

  4. I wake up at 6am on Saturdays a lot of the time too. I just cannot shake my weekday schedule but I get the most accomplished during the wee hours of the morning.

    • Hollie, yes we are both early bees 🙂 I like waking up early and getting a head start before everyone else. But once in awhile, I need my lazy days too and just sleep in and make no plans for the day.

  5. Annette (aka Defiant Vegan) says:

    Hi HC,

    This looks delicious although I’m a vegan I can improvise by adding scrambled tofu. Yum sounds thinking about it.

    I’ve purchased the Vega Protein Powder I found it a bit thick and it made me nauseous although I didn’t add the fruit thought it was too much.

    I just needed to make it work for me. duh LOL

    Thanks for the tip now I know I can enjoy my powder had been avoiding it for some months now.

    • Annette,

      I know what you mean about the strong taste of Vega. It took me awhile to adjust to the taste and I don’t use the recommended serving. I think on the container, one serving = 2 scoops. I use half a scoop most of the time and it’s plenty for me. I like to add frozen banana in the mix. I also like blending fresh spinach with it too.

      I don’t think I’ve have used Vega just on it’s own for quiet awhile now. Whenever I feel like I’ve been lacking vegetables in my diet, I try to have Vega smoothie when I can for an easy and convenient supplement. I love the ingredients but the only downfall is that it’s pricey. I’ll have to wait for another promotion.

      ~ Lea

      • Annette (aka Defiant Vegan) says:

        yes it is expensive I purchased the small container to test it out. I’ve been hearing they have a lighter product that I’m planning on getting which is the Vega Sport – Comes in Acai Berry

        Sport Protein features a broad spectrum blend of sprouted whole grain brown rice, green pea, hemp, alfalfa and spirulina proteins. Alkaline-forming, Sport Protein provides a complete balanced array of essential and non essential amino acids.

        Or another one that I tried (you might be speaking of this one or just a smoothie in general) is Vega Smoothie Infusion – Pouch Couldn’t find the exact ingredients, aside from all of them are plant based.

        I just needed for an extra boost of protein since my goal now is Strength training.

        Also I wanted to say thank you, I checked out that Body Pump Website and I liked what I saw I’m definitely going to use some of there routines into my work out.

        Thanks a bunch that was cool. 🙂

  6. That looks like my kind of oatmeal! I had peanut butter and banana today, but strawberries and cream has been my breakfast for choice for the past week or two.

  7. 🙂 I got up at 6 AM yesterday too 🙂 and 6:50 AM today…. I love accomplishing a lot on the weekends. Doesn’t pump rock? All of the Les Mills classes are pretty amazing. Have you taken attack? You must! Its my favorite class that I teach. Beautiful breakfast. The strawberries brighten it all up. I just saw the strawberry cupcakes you made too- amazing! Hope your Sunday is treating you well

  8. 6a on the weekend?! I like to wake up early on the weekends for the same reasons, but not that early! 🙂 More like 8ish. Doesn’t always happen though, haha!

  9. I just started doing Body Pump again a couple months ago and it feels awesome =) I am still feeling the burn from my class yesterday!

    The bread pudding looks DELICIOUS!

  10. I’m curious what your studying schedule is like?? any tips on how to maximize study time?

    • Lisa, in order to stay on track for my studies, I try to study about 3-4 hours a day. I try to break them apart because I get antsy sitting and reading for too long. 1.5 hours in the morning and 1.5 hours at night.

      I alternate my workout days to every other day. I workout around 3-4 days a week and it has worked for me. When I study late at night then I don’t workout the following morning. I need my sleep and I find that if I don’t get enough sleep then I crave sweets and junk food. There are times where I have to study and can’t fit in a workout, so my priority is always nutrition first, then fitness second.

      I’m curious about your study schedule too? Please share

      ~ Lea

  11. Great eats in this post.. especially those strawberries made me miss summer!


  1. […] I bought his book Thrive last year so I was familiar with the Thrive diet and the concept of high-net gains food. I also own a few jars of the Vega products and use them in my smoothies. […]

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