Dessert/ Dinner


Good evening all!

I had a serious case of the sugar cravings today at work!!!!! It all started with a random lemonhead candy that I found in the drawer and then later on I also had another one of those mini homemade almond joy bars that the pastry chef at Roy’s makes so amazingly. I think it’s hormones more than anything else!

So, I really want to try to put on some more muscle. I’m naturally very thin and even though I work out, sometimes it feels like I do the same thing over and over and don’t really see results. Does this happen to anyone else?! I don’t want to lose weight, of course, I’d actually like to gain about five pound in muscle—especially in my arms since my legs are already super strong from running. I’m planning on starting to train for some more races this fall and I’m going to start training next month, so if you all notice some changes in my daily food, you’ll know why. When I was training for races last year I ATE SO MUCH!!!!! I had to, just to keep my weight stable because I was burning so many calories. So, with that said, does anyone out there have any tips for me to gain some muscle and tone up?

For dinner tonight I defrosted one of my turkey burgers that I froze last week and cooked that along with some bulgur wheat and a ton of broccoli. I served my burger “naked” with ketchup and mustard to dip into :). This was a very satisfying and fueling meal, hopefully it’ll keep me going for a few hours since I’m already so tired!!


And for a snack…..I want to get some of that super cool Hemp Protein Powder I see on people’s blogs. I might have to get some this weekend if my budget allows (I think it’s expensive?), but for now I wanted to try the roommate’s fav: Dessert. I’ve never tried this before but I read the ingredients and it seems pretty good. No aspartame, which is great because that stuff is naaasty! I got the idea of making a shake-to-go from a past personal trainer of mine when I was just starting to get into working out. She said just put a scoopful in a plastic baggie and bring along a thermos so when you want it, you can just make it on the spot. We’ll see how it goes tonight and if this actually keeps me full! I’m bringing 1/2 cup soymilk mixed with 1/2 cup water to mix the powder into later tonight…



LOVED all the breakfast ideas! Now I have some new ideas when I go grocery shopping! My favorite breakfast of all time though is a tie between my mom’s homemade waffles (well, it’s Bisquick mix but its nostalgic to me since I ate them when I was a kid!) and peanut butter and jam on ezekiel english muffins with banana, which is probably a tad healthier ;).

off to school, off to school…..

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  • Sarah
    July 23, 2008 at 9:26 pm

    I hear ya on the gaining muscle thing! I’m naturally tall and lean as well…

    I find that increasing my intensity in my workouts, doing new moves, and increasing my overall amount of calories (not just focusing on eating more protein or carbs) with wholesome foods is what makes me look and feel my best (and strongest!)

    I’m sorry I can’t offer more tips…just wanted to let you know I completely understand what you’re talking about, and think it’s a wonderful goal. 🙂

  • Amanda B
    July 23, 2008 at 9:32 pm

    I’m a runner (30-60 mpw) and I gained some serious muscle by incorporating Cathe Friedrich DVDs into my rotation. She kicks ass. I’ve got her moves memorized now, so I don’t even need the DVDS…but she rocks. I esp. like the Kick Punch Crunch/Legs and Glutes DVD for the legs/glutes portion, the Butts and Guts…well, any of her weights DVDs are just AMAZING. If you go to her forums and explain what your goals are, your current regimen, and your current equipment, someone can point you to the right DVD(s).

  • BethT
    July 23, 2008 at 9:35 pm

    Jenna, my hubby just did exactly what you are trying to do. Now granted, he’s a guy, but he changed his eating to 5 – 6 mini meals a day with lean protein as the central component of each meal. Carbs were only complex ones and primarily brown rice, oatmeal and sweet potatoes. Between meals he had protein shakes made with skim milk or water and protein powHe ate a LOT but it was all healthy stuff.

    As far as the workout, his trainer upped the weight lifting and nixed high intensity cardio to avoid burning any muscle he put on. He had to keep his heart rate at 60% of his max to avoid burning muscle.

  • Rose Huber
    July 23, 2008 at 9:59 pm

    Jenna – wish I could give you more advice about gaining muscle, but I am probably the exact opposite of you. I am naturally an average build, and I have gained muscle through lifting on a regular basis (plus running has made my legs quite large – which I used to hate but now don’t mind so much). I do agree with BethT about the 5-6 meals concept, and protein shakes will certainly help (I incorporated Whey protein quite a bit a few years back – though I got “too big” for my own liking). I will say that the name of that Protein powder sounds good though! I would be attracted to anything labeled “Dessert” 🙂

  • Katie S
    July 23, 2008 at 10:23 pm

    What sort of races will you be running, Jenna? I’ve only ran a few 5k’s but I’m def trying to work on that and run a little longer races… What’s your training plan like?

  • Kimberly
    July 23, 2008 at 10:50 pm

    Hey, Jenna. My dad (lifelong bodybuilder) has been training me to build up some muscle, and his two cardinal rules are: do 4 sets of each exercise (no less), and use a weight that you can only do 3 or 4 reps of before your arms “give out.” If you can do 10 or 15 reps, you’re getting an aerobic benefit, but you aren’t breaking down any muscle to be re-built. I only use 10 or 12.5 pounders, but I have definitely seen a difference in the last few months! (my arms used to look like I just walked out of a concentration camp, now they’re quite developed.) Also, I’ve been told by personal trainers that immediately after a strength-training session, it is imperative to eat a substantial protein meal (egg-white omelette or tuna, for example.) Anyway, that’s all I know!

  • danielle
    July 23, 2008 at 10:51 pm

    Hi Jenna! Love your blog, you’re very inspirational! I’m in the same boat as you…really want to gain some muscle mass but just don’t know what to do! And I really love my cardio! Just wishing you luck!
    btw, I enjoy those hemp protein packets and they’re 99 cents where I’m at compared to Spirutein that’s about $1.50!
    I love the shakes after a workout!

  • ModelBehavior
    July 23, 2008 at 11:03 pm

    So is he protein powder part of your plan to bulk up? Or is it just a new snack your trying?

    I tried some protein powder of my bf’s one time and it tasted like chalk. seriously like ground up sidewalk chalk. I hope “dessert” tastes better then that for you 🙂

  • grace
    July 23, 2008 at 11:32 pm

    Hey! I just wanted to tell I think the 365 brand whey protein powder works great for mixing into smoothies (not so much just mixed w/ water though) and its not so expensive. I do want to try the hemp protein powder though. I just started eating more protein and lifting heavier weight and really saw a difference in my body. I try to get around 100 grams of protein and maintain my same calories. I know that is way more than some say is healthy, but I really do have a more sustained energy! I still get plenty of healthy carbs and fats too! This is just from personal experience and a friend whose advice I trust. Good luck with your goals!

  • Bridget
    July 23, 2008 at 11:36 pm

    Last year around this time I wanted to tone up too – especially so that my arms would look hot in my wedding dress! Anyways, the thing I noticed the biggest difference from was going to a “dynamic training” class regularly. It combines cardio and weights and does a lot of strength training while still keeping your HR up the whole time- kinda like some boot camp classes. I don’t know if it’s because it was such a different workout from my usual, but I definitely noticed a difference in my muscle tone.

  • amber
    July 23, 2008 at 11:58 pm

    i worked out with a trainer for a year and a half and the man put some serious muscle on me. the key is to go as heavy as you possibly can on the weights you strength-train with. if you can do more than fifteen reps of any exercise you do, the weight is too light. you should be fatiguing your muscles at 15 or less reps (12 is even better). so do 12-15 reps of each exercise, 3 times. and be sure you’re getting enough protein if you train that hard, because otherwise you get over-trained and sluggish. remember protein is the only thing that builds muscle! if you’re training a lot, eat a good 2x your weight in grams of protein (use protein powder like whey if necessary–i like the jay robb brand with stevia!) and cut back on your cardio so you’re not burning the protein you eat with exercise instead of letting it go to your muscles.

  • Sarah C
    July 24, 2008 at 12:01 am

    I recently put on about 10 pounds of muscle (with a little fat of course :)) because I was only about 110 lbs at 5’6”. It was hard work bc I am small like you and teach a lot of spin classes. But I did it by constantly changing exercises and adding weight. Figure out a split that works for you (I do MWF upper body, Tu/Th lower, abs Tu/Th, Yoga Sat) and try to stick with it. I do the same exercises/machines for two weeks, increasing weight on the second week. By constantly changing you will keep your muscles “on their toes”. And I ate a TON of peanut butter…about a jar a week!

  • Laura
    July 24, 2008 at 12:07 am

    Hey, I’ve never posted a comment here, but I have been reading your blog for a few weeks now. I have to agree with everyone who said that lifting heavy is the key to building muscle. I think women underestimate what they can lift a lot of the time. Also, I really like Dessert protein powder. I have what is called a blender bottle from GNC. It is a plastic cup with a little ball whisk inside. I could never find a powder that really mixed well, but this bottle does the trick. I think they sell them at Whole Foods and Vitamin Shoppe too. You may not have a problem with lumps, but if you do, check out these cups.

  • Nicole
    July 24, 2008 at 12:14 am

    I’ve also tried the Dessert protein powder and was not a fan of it at all, considering everyone I asked about it loved it! One recommendation they did have, though, was to mix it with cottage cheese. I’m not sure if you eat cottage cheese, but if you invested in a whole jar of the powder, it may be worth a try.

    Also, I am a runner and definitely do not have tons of upper body strength. I’m not a fan of weight lifting but, like you said in another post, yoga and plain ‘ole body weight exercises really made a huge difference in helping me see some change start to happen.

  • sarah
    July 24, 2008 at 12:22 am

    good luck with your strength-building goal! i definitely know the feeling of feeling like i had to eat every 2 seconds while marathon training. although i have never had problems maintaining my weight while running 40-60mpw — in fact, it was more like figuring out when to STOP eating since i was always hungry!

    i am interested in the strength dvds. somehow i think lifting weights might be more fun if someone were leading me through a ‘routine’ like amanda mentioned.

    and finally — i am with you on your love for pushups! they are my favorite. i just feel strong doing them!

  • falafel
    July 24, 2008 at 1:04 am

    decreasing the cardio will help you gain muscle. you are burning your gains. and you need to be in a slight calorie surplus. lift heavy and often. take rest days between sessions as this is when the muscle is repairing.

    the ladies here:
    are experts. post your questions. they’ll definitely help you out.

    but you definitely have to lift heavy. i’m 4’10” and 103# – i squatted 115# tonight. heeeeaaavvvyyyy. you’ll see results, kiddo.

  • sp
    July 24, 2008 at 1:37 am

    Question…on the, do you have to know the name of every pose and how it works or do they guide you through it with directions as opposed to the name of the pose?

  • Michael
    July 24, 2008 at 2:46 am

    I recommend gaining muscle the good old-fashioned way, lifting weights! I’m a pretty skinny guy (6 ft, currently 160), but am trying to bulk up. I’d suggest the same, though I know guys have a tendency to bulk up faster than girls.

    By the way I have to ask this (and I’m probably going to get lambasted for this), but it’s a naturally curious question. Quite a few of the girls I’ve gone out with have all obsessed about being thin and never wanted to put on muscle. Now, I in all candor thought it was ridiculous because I’d rather date a girl who loves life than one who runs away from it. So while I admire (and I do) Jenna for not wanting to “disappear” , I was surprised by the number of girls who responded by saying they wanted to put on muscle, though they were naturally thin. It seems contrary to so many girls I’ve known.

    Did I mention I majored in sociology in undergrad?

    And not too generalize, but most of the dudes I know like girls with meat on their bones.

  • Laura
    July 24, 2008 at 3:01 am

    Hi! Just wanted to say that I’m a big fan of your blog! I just discovered my love for dates this past year too, one of my fave little snacks is to stick a couple raw almonds inside a pitted medjool date. So good! Toasted Ezekiel english muffin with almond butter or pb with jam and sliced bananas is one of my fave breakfasts too! I love to run and workout and am always trying to find a balance between that and my love for food. Thanks for being an inspiration!

  • Cat
    July 24, 2008 at 8:04 am

    At, they provide everything for you (except the mat :o)
    They give you a printable pose guide with all of the names of the poses specific to the class you download. It’s super helpful! I’m actually contemplating whether I should do a class now or go to the gym… hmmm.

  • C
    July 24, 2008 at 10:41 am

    Good Luck with your weight training goals! Have you ever thought of working with a personal trainer?

    Let us know how that shake was!

  • Fitnessista
    July 24, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    hey girl,
    weight lifting is definitely the way to go if you want to build muscle. if you’re training for races and also want to build muscle, i would watch how much you’re eating in response to cardio– particuarly by fueling yourself well for running, because after a certain amount of cardio (usually about one hour if you have sufficient amount of carbs to burn before you start your cardio), you start to burn muscle.
    also after you weight lift, make sure to refuel your muscles with protein (a smoothie is usually a good way to go!).
    if you’re looking at changing up your workout routine (which is a good idea because you need to challenge muscles to make them change– if you keep doing the same things, your body just kicks into cruise control), I’ve started a new thing on my blog: step-by-step weight programs that work your entire body, meant to be done 3x a week. i’m going to change the program every two weeks. i would love it if you checked it out: and the workout page is at

    hope this helps!
    have a great day,

  • jenna
    July 24, 2008 at 12:37 pm


    I have actually worked with personal trainers on and off for about 4 years! This is the first year I haven’t done it because, well, its expensive and I’m at school. I’d love to hopefully work it in my budget to work out with one maybe twice a week when I get home this winter. I need an extra push sometimes!

  • Kimberly
    July 24, 2008 at 12:37 pm

    Hey, Michael! In my case, I was never all that interested in weight-lifting, because I considered it boring and unnecessary (I assumed I was getting all the exercise I needed from my long-distance running.) However, my doctor said that the most important thing all women can do, more so than cardio or good nutrition, is strength-training — it is crucial for building up bone density to prevent osteoporosis (also improves posture and cardio.) So the long-term health benefits, plus wanting to look healthier, were my motivations (since on my body, some muscle mass is the difference between being “skinny” and being “lean.”)

  • mel
    July 24, 2008 at 12:59 pm

    although I’m pretty lean, I popped out of the womb with muscles! haha! I cheered in hs and lifting girls is the best workout in the world for toning but since I’m older now, I lift weights most days I go to the gym. I usually go about 4 days a week and do some sort of cardio (like 15-25) minutes on the elliptical or tredmill, then do several weight machines and push ups. it has really helped me keep up my muscle tone ! instead of doing seperate days for weight lifting, I’d try to incorporate it into your usual workouts ! good luck jenna!

  • karla
    July 24, 2008 at 1:15 pm

    if you want something fun and natural that will kick your back and arms into gear…………ROCK CLIMBING

    its my absolute fave thing, you can be outside enjoying the mountain doing something natural (hey, i go to the gym too…but it feels pretty unnatural sometimes) or you can do it in an INDOOR CLIMBING GYM

    im sure you have one around you!

    good luck


  • gv
    July 24, 2008 at 1:55 pm

    hell yeah to climbers! karla, what are climbing? i just worked up to 5.7s after getting into it in may. where do you climb normally?

  • AshleyH
    July 24, 2008 at 2:13 pm

    Michael- I am glad you said something about women wanting to be too thin. I got really thin a year ago and then started to put on my muscle and actually getting some of my curves back and I couldnt be happier with my body. I wish all girls felt this way!!

    Jenna I wish I could help with the gaining muscle thing but seriously I gain muscle by lifting up a weight! I cant imagine what my body would look like if I took protein powder I would look ridiculous!! lol

  • runjess
    July 24, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    I do this workout:

    once a week and a slightly easier one (2 sets instead of 3) once a week (2 strength sessions total). I have lots of muscle, maybe starting to get too much. You could do the easier one 3x a week and get very fast results.

    Honestly, I wouldn’t bother with the protein powder. Most women will just never have a lot of muscle because of the lack of testosterone. You can add some nice tone with the weights without wasting money on protein powder.

  • mel
    July 24, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    I love rock climbing too! so fun!