Russian Twist and The Plank

I changed up my workout routine last night. I decided to do my Return to Run plan first instead of last. Last night was also the last workout for Week 1 of the plan.

My gym is going through construction right now which means it’s a disaster zone everywhere. It also means they apparently aren’t fixing broken machines or the broken TVs. I decided that I would check out a video on my Netflix iPhone app.

Even just watching the first 20 minutes of it, I got choked up with emotions. I’m looking forward to watching the rest of it this weekend.

I set the pace for the walk portion a little faster than last time.

It took me less time to complete one mile.

After the treadmill, I worked out with weights for about 40 minutes. Then I went to focus on my core.

The Russian Twist

I’ve mentioned this move before and I want to describe it in more depth. It’s a really easy exercise and it will get your blood pumping. It’s also an exercise you can do at home. I bought a Medicine Ball at Walmart for less than $20. I used the one at the gym.

How it works is that you sit in a sit-up position with knees bent a bit. Then hold the medicine ball (or weight) straight out in front of you and twist your abdomen.

I attribute the loss of my love handles to doing this exercise. It really works!

Now, onto the dreaded Plank.

The Plank

First off, the Plank is HARD. You’re entire body will shake when doing it. The plank is excellent for your core and it’s simple. Get in the push up position but don’t do push ups.

Just hold it as long as you can. Don’t sag in the middle, that will hurt your back, but don’t stick your butt high in the air either. Tilt your pelvis inward and hold in your belly. Hold it for 10 seconds, then 20 seconds and so on.

Check out this link to Men’s Fitness for some alternates to the Plank. Or watch the video to see it in action.

Last night at the gym I was able to hold the plank for about 20 seconds at a time. And my body was shaking the whole time. After the core work, I spent some extra time doing my strengthening exercises from the doc.

Gym Stats:

Time: 1:09

Calories Burned: 520

Workouts: Treadmill, weights, Core, Strengthening

QUESTION: What exercises do you do for your core? Are you going to try the Russian Twist or Plank?

Michael made Annie’s Organic Mac n’ Cheese (jazzed up with white cheddar cheese and hot dogs). 🙂

He used Nathan’s Kosher hot dogs.

I made myself a salad too.

I’ve been craving creamy salad dressings lately instead of oil based dressings. Luckily I had some light Thousand Island dressing.

We got caught up on Mad Men too. I really liked the last episode where Don put that anti-smoking ad in the paper. It was pretty brilliant.

I realized this morning that Fall is officially here. I’m wearing gloves every morning to work, and check out this fog:

QUESTION: Has autumn arrived in your neck of the woods?

Overnight Mac n’ Cheese Recipe

Overnight Mac n’ Cheese Recipe

1 (10 ounce) can of Cream of Mushroom Soup

1 cup milk

1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, cubed

3 Tablespoons melted butter

1 cup uncooked elbow macaroni

1/4 cup bread crumbs

3 Tablespoons onion, chopped

Combine the Cream of Mushroom soup and the milk and whisk until smooth. Stir in the cheese cubes, chopped onion, and uncooked macaroni. Pour the entire mixture into a greased pan. Cover and refrigerate over night. The next day, add the bread crumbs to the top and drizzle the melted butter on the bread crumbs. Bake for one hour at 350 degrees.

Calorie Info

According to Calorie Counter Recipe Analysis site: 358 calories each serving (4 servings total), 13.1g protein, 21.9g fat, 26.8g Carbs.


On Sunday afternoon, I started the first process of making the Overnight Mac n’ Cheese. I didn’t have sharp cheddar cheese so I swapped that with Colby Jack and White Cheddar.

Mix the cream of mushroom soup and milk together. I add some salt and pepper too. Mix it until it’s not lumpy anymore.

Cube the cheese. It’s okay if you add a little bit more than the recipe…gooey cheese is the best part of the mac n’ cheese experience!

You can use any kind of pasta you want. I used whatever I had one cup leftover of.

Add the diced onion to the mixture and mix everything together.

Pour into a greased pan and cover with plastic wrap.

Put in the fridge for 24 hours and then it’s ready for the second step.


The second day is actually super easy. It’s the day you sprinkle bread crumbs on top and pour some melted butter on that.

Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for about an hour.

You can tell it’s done when the casserole is bubbling and the cheese is melted.

If you want the top extra crunch, pop it back in the oven and use the broiler. Just be careful you don’t burn it! The Colby Jack cheese didn’t melt as well as the sharp cheddar usually does. Oh well, live and learn.

Michael decided he wanted to “white trash” his mac n’cheese up. He cooked a bratwurst and sliced it into his dinner.

I ate a salad with mine.

For some added carbs, I had a Mirror Pond Pale Ale with dinner. 🙂

Dinner was served!

QUESTION: What is your favorite Mac n’ Cheese recipe?