I am getting married in May and I am beyond excited. So, naturally I hired a personal trainer for the first time in my life. To be fair I also joined a new gym so there was a heavy discount, but anyway, she is amazing! I asked for someone to kick my ass and she never fails.
I was so proud of myself for hiring her, but less happy with myself for booking our sessions on friday mornings at 6:30 a.m. I am not a morning person to begin with, but over the past year I have tried to push myself to wake up early in order to work out and actually enjoy my mornings without feeling rushed. This was also a lot easier to do when I HAD to get out of bed for my 1-3 hour commute in NYC. Now that I have a 15 minute walk to work, it’s been a little harder to force myself out of my comfy bed and away from snuggling with my cat.
I also need to eat before I work out or else I get nauseous. Normally during the week I am able to get up and make breakfast before the gym (or at least find the time to sit and eat Chia pudding), but by the time Friday rolls around, it becomes a lot more of a struggle. So on Fridays, I began “treating” myself to GoMacro bars on my way to work (I highly recommend the almond butter banana). However, these bars are not particularly cheap and they have a ton of calories in them.
I began to think that it would be easier if I could make my own cheaper version with less ingredients, and after researching various bar recipes I came up with this one and it is absolutely amazing. The almond butter and dark chocolate combo has pretty much been my life recently (not the most conducive to losing those pre-wedding lbs…). But, these bars had so much flavor and did not taste healthy at all despite having such healthy and natural ingredients. They are the perfect “before the gym snack” that are quick and easy to take on the go. I ended up making these bars pretty big, so I ate about half before the gym and half after. Choose to cut them however you like and let me know how they taste!
Be sure to comment and share, I can’t wait to hear how yours are!
- 1 cup of unsalted almonds (chopped)
- 1 ½ cup of rolled oats
- 10 pitted medjool dates (soaked in water for 10 minutes)
- ¼ cup of maple syrup
- ¼ cup of almond butter
- ½ cup of dark chocolate chips
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Place oats and almonds on baking sheet, bake for about 10-15 minutes.
- While ingredients are toasting blend dates in a food processor until smooth.
- Next, heat the maple syrup and almond butter on a sauce pan over medium heat. Once liquified (?) add to the oat mixture and combine until thoroughly mixed.
- Transfer mixture to an 11 x 7 inch baking pan (or 8 x 8) lined with parchment paper. Begin to flatten mixture. I placed another layer of parchment paper on top and used a book to pat and flatten out.
- Cover with parchment paper and put in freezer for 20 minutes to harden.
- Begin to melt chocolate chips in double broiler or microwave, may need to melt more chips than necessary to make sure they don’t burn (I learned this lesson the hard way… 3 times).
- Take bars out and drizzle chocolate on top. Place back in freezer for another 30 minutes.
- Once the chocolate has hardened you can take out and slice into bars or squares. These will last in the fridge for up to a week in an airtight container or you can keep them in the freezer to maintain freshness.