The INSANITY Challenge (Recipe: Harvest Pumpkin Brownies)

Today started the INSANITY Challenge.

The definition of insanity:

the state of being seriously mentally ill; madness as in “he suffered from bouts of insanity”

synonyms: mental illness, madness, dementia


extreme foolishness or irrationality as in “it might be pure insanity to take this loan”

synonyms:  folly, foolishness, madness, idiocy, stupidity, lunacy, silliness

Those definitions are probably fairly accurate.

However, I am also talking about the INSANITY workout.  I know I have blogged about this class before because I used to take it in Madison.  And guess what!  There was a Groupon for the classes here in Raleigh.  So, of course, I signed up.

After going to two classes, I got this email about the summer INSANITY Challenge.  Three INSANITY classes a week–Monday, Tuesday and Thursday–for six weeks.  That’s 18 classes.

They take baseline and final body measurements, before and after photos, once a week “fit tests” and a close monitoring of your progress.  I have mentioned getting back into overall shape before the NYC Marathon, so I thought, ‘What the heck?  I might as well give it a try!’

So, today we did all the baseline body measurements, photos and I took my first “fit test”.  For the Fit Test, you do each of the following moves for a minute counting your number of reps and then we compare each Monday to see our progress:

– Switch Kicks (the height of my kicks got lower and lower as the minute progressed)

– Power Jacks

– Power Knees

– Power Jumps

– Globe Jumps

– Suicide Jumps

– Push-Up Jacks (this one was my worst)

– Low Plank Obliques

Because I’m missing this Thursday’s class to go up to Milwaukee for the 4th, I stayed after for the regularly held INSANITY class that is on Monday evening.  Kyle and Tanisha joined me.  I think I will probably do this most Mondays because the Fit Test is just that–a short test.  It isn’t an entire INSANITY workout.

But I do realize that I am completely insane.  My quads were super sore today (I think from that bike ride I went on with Kyle on Saturday).  But I’m hoping this will not only help get me in shape but also help motivate me to lose those last few pounds!  We soon shall see!

Oh, BTW.  Last week was my highest mileage running week since marathon training!  16.48 miles!  Woohoo!

Food for Thought:  Sesame Seeds and Oil.  A compound in sesame oil called sesamin has been shown to have a potential fat-burning effect.  It may be that it increases the production of ketones, which helps your body maintain muscle, which in turn burns fat.  In addition, lignans found in sesame seeds help your liver produce the enzymes necessary for fat metabolism.

Quote of the Day:

“The only way to have friends is to be one.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

This is yet another recipe from when I was in Madison.  And I know it’s not really the season for pumpkin recipes, BUT I wanted to get through all the recipes I made while in Madison since I now live in Raleigh.  (Also, so that some Raleigh peeps don’t think I’m holding out on them and not giving them desserts when I make them since they were actually made forever ago.)  But these were awesome.  They have made it to the “Deserve a Second Try” list.  I’ll probably make them again this fall.  But I warn you, I also have about 15 other pumpkin recipes that I want to try.  Not kidding.

Harvest Pumpkin Brownies

Harvest Pumpkin Brownies



– 1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin

– 4 eggs

– 3/4 cup canola oil

– 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

– 2 cups AP flour

– 2 cups sugar

– 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice

– 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

– 2 teaspoons baking powder

– 1 teaspoon baking soda

– 1/2 teaspoon salt


– 6 tablespoons butter, softened

– 1 package cream cheese, softened

– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

– 1 teaspoon milk

– 1/8 teaspoon salt

– 1 1/2 to 2 cups confectioners’ sugar


– In a large bowl, beat the pumpkin, eggs, oil and vanilla until blended. Combine dry ingredients; gradually stir into pumpkin mixture.

– Pour into a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack.

– In a small bowl, beat the butter, cream cheese, vanilla, milk and salt until smooth. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Frost brownies. Store in the refrigerator.

Courtesy of Taste of Home

This entry was posted in Individual Workouts, Nutrition, Recipes. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The INSANITY Challenge (Recipe: Harvest Pumpkin Brownies)

  1. Pingback: Plyometric Workouts (Recipe: Banana Crumb Cake) | Oven Lovin' Runnin'

  2. Pingback: The Art of Pacing (Recipe: Monkey Bread Muffins) | Oven Lovin' Runnin'

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s