The only way to survive in the game, is to RUN in real life.
Zombies, Run! is a semi-immersive fitness game that integrates accelerometer or GPS functionality with the fictional threat of the zombie apocalypse. The game takes place in a post apocalyptic world, where you, the runner/player is a member of a small society of survivors who are huddled together attempting to rebuild civilization. As the player, it is your mission to run out on various mission in which it is your objective to retrieve certain items to bring back to your camp. As you complete your running objectives, you earn items which you can then use to add to and build your society.
The game is available in the iPhone app store for $7.99. After you lace up your shoes, apply some sunblock, and step outside for your next run, open the app for a unique workout experience in which you can fully immerse yourself in the game’s mission and let the threat of flesh eating zombies become your motivator. The app can integrate with your existing iTunes playlist, with the option of only allowing game play audio to occur between songs. With GPS enabled, you have the option of “turning in” to areas occupied by zombies, where you will then have to speed up your run speed for intervals lasting up to 1 minute in order for your character to escape alive.
For more info on the app, check out the reviews in the app store, here.
According to Twitter, today (9 Feb 2012) is Chocolate Day! Not a bad food holiday, if I do say so myself. To celebrate, today’s #ThirstyThursday post features my adaptation of a popular treat, the Frozen Hot Chocolate. The Frrrozen Hot Chocolate is a cold, creamy and decadent chocolate drink made famous by NYC restaurant Serendipity 3. The original recipe (which you can view on epicurious.com here) combines high quality dark chocolate with store bought hot chocolate mix to create the cold yet warming concoction. In September 2010, I had the privileged of savoring this drink in person at the original Serendipity 3 location in NYC. I was fortunate enough to come in at a time when restaurant owner Stephen Bruce was manning the phones taking reservations for later that evening. He was gracious enough to pose for the following picture, as well as sign a copy of his book, which I gave to my sister.
Slimmed down but still sexy
Since my trip to NYC in 2010, I’ve experienced a number of changes. One of which involved me eliminating dairy products from my diet as a result of becoming lactose intolerant. My adaptation of the Frozen Hot Chocolate substitutes coconut milk and pure cocoa powder to create the same warming sensation inspired by the original recipe. Each 8 oz serving contains approx 220 calories and a boatload of happiness.
1/3 cup Lite Coconut Milk (Feel free to substitute whatever milk of your choice, I just prefer coconut)
2 Tablespoons Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
2 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder (Dutch process preferred)
Dash of Cinnamon
Sweetener of Choice – To Taste (Optional)
1 1/2 – 2 cups Ice
Combine Coconut milk and semi-sweet chocolate chips in a microwave safe container. Microwave on HIGH for 45 seconds until coconut milk is bubbly and chocolate is melted (do not let coconut milk boil over). Place the warm mixture in a blender. Add cocoa powder, cinnamon and sweetener (if using). Blend on High for 1 minute until frothy. Add ice and continue to blend until smooth.
In relation to diet, and weight loss, chocolate is a contentious topic. On one hand, the sweet confection contains saturated fat, and sugar. However, on the other, chocolate, especially Dark chocolate with a high cocoa content is rich in antioxidants, and proven to produce endorphins and other chemicals that promote a positive feeling, and feeling of satisfaction. For more facts about chocolate, visit 7 Myths and Facts about Chocolate via Sparkpeople.com.
Art (or Advertising) imitating life
Are you a fan of the big game? If you’re like me, not only do you look forward to the all day feasting and the team camaraderie (and the eventual smack talking) but almost central to the two teams playing, you look forward to the advertising spectacle taking place between plays. As a follow up to last year’s wildly successful The Force (staring the Pint-sized Darth Vader) Volkswagen released their 2012 Game Day commercial, featuring a pudgy pooch who receives a rude awakening after seeing a shiny, red VW Beetle drive by. While overindulgence is inevitable on Game Day, I hope Fido keeps you inspired to stay motivated, and positive in pursuing your long term diet and exercise goals.
While not as “sticky” as The Force, I think this is still cute and relative, especially given the fact that this is the time of the year when most people start loosening their belts on those New Year’s resolution diet and exercise plans. With The Bark Side teaser trailer, I was expecting more Star Wars action, (especially the Whippet AT-AT). The Mos Eisles Cantina scene at the end felt like a giveaway, or more of an obligation to knowledge the expectations set forth from last year’s commercial. One thing that I felt was missing was the element of The Jester (see Advertising Archetypes) that was so prevalent in most of VW’s advertising history.
Back in 2002…
Back in 2002, I was a freshman in high school. One thing I remember dreading about school was PE, specifically our once a month timed test of running the mile. I was That kid. The one who got straight A’s without trying… in everything except Physical Education. I was not a runner then, (nor am i much of a fan of running now), and distinctly remember struggling to come in under the 15 minute time limit. I was a young 15 year old who couldn’t even complete a 1 mile run without having to take a break in the middle to walk.
Fast forward 10 years, and here I am! Not only can I complete that 1 mile test without stopping, but I can demolish that 15 minute time limit. This Music Monday posts is inspired by music that was popular 10 years ago. Where were you at 10 years ago? Were you more active that you are now? Does the memory of your younger self motivate you to get in shape? Or does it fill you with pride when you consider the progress of where you’ve come?
1. What’s Luv – Fat Joe, Ja Rule, Ashanti
2. Heaven (featuring Do) – DJ Sammy, Do
3. In the End – Linkin Park
4. Hey Baby – No Doubt
5. Whenever, Wherever – Shakira
6. Hot in Herre – Nelly
7. Love At First Sight – Kylie Minogue
8. Dirrty – Christina Aguilera
9. Just a Friend 2002 – Mario
10. Without Me – Eminem
11. Always On Time – Ja Rule, Ashanti
12. Gotta Get Thru This – Daniel Bedingfield
13. Sk8er Boi – Avril Lavigne
Benefits of Green Smoothies
Green smoothies are an easy way to incorporate nutrition from whole foods into your diet. All you need is a blender, and an assortment of produce, and some ice. You can make green smoothies using a variety of combinations of fruits and veggies so feel free to experiment and find your favorite combination. I usually use a 50:50 ratio of veggie and fruit. A typical green smoothie for me can include the following: 1 handful of dark leafy greens, 1/2 small cucumber (skin and seeds removed), 2-4 pieces of broccoli, 1/2 apple, juice of 1 lime, 1/2 handful of mangoes or pineapple and 1 TB flax seed. The following is a list of benefits of drinking green smoothies.
1. Whole food nutrition – Chop and blend a mix of fruits and veggies such as broccoli, celery, spinach or parsley with apples, kiwi, pineapple, or frozen mangoes. The blender’s chopping action will break down cellular walls, making the vitamins easy to absorb.
2. Extra fiber – Using whole foods as opposed to juicing them keeps the fiber intact. Blend on High for at least 2 minutes (depending on the power of your blender) to get a smooth consistency. Fiber fill you up quickly and keep you satisfied.
3. Less mess – Blending usually requires less cleanup and creates less byproducts than juicing. Because you’re using less produce, you end up saving money in the long run.
Suggested Smoothie ingredients:
Dark Leafy Greens: Kale, Swiss Chard, Collard Greens, carrot tops, beet greens, spinach, parsley
Vegetables: Broccoli, celery, cucumbers, avocados
Fruits: Apples (any kinds, remove core and keep skin), kiwi, pineapple, grapes (red or green) berries, pears, bananas (fresh or frozen), mangoes (fresh or frozen), melons,
Other ingredients: Fruit juices, coconut milk, almond milk, yogurt or other dairy
Optional supplements to add: Green tea extract, whey protein, flax seed, omega-3 fatty acids,