Recipe: Peanut Butter Chocolate Muffins

Recipe: Peanut Butter Chocolate Muffins

Photo Credit Kodiak Cakes


Peanut Butter Chocolate Muffins

Serves: 12 | Serving Size: 1 Muffin
Total Time: 25 min | Prep: 10 min | Cook: 15 min

We LOVE peanut butter and are getting prepared for National Peanut Butter Day (Friday January 24th for those of you keeping track) by taking one of our favorite recipes and adding a bit more peanut butter power. We altered the Kodiak Cakes Double Dark Chocolate Muffin mix recipe which you can find on the box here. At about 250 Calories, 45 grams of carbohydrates, 15 grams of protein and 4 grams of fats, you can add a spoonful of your favorite nut butter on top of the chocolate Kodiak Cake Double Dark Chocolate Muffins for more of your favorite nutty flavor!



  • 1 Box Kodiak Cakes Double Dark Chocolate Muffin mix
  • 2 Eggs (or egg substitute)
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 4 Tablespoons of peanut butter (or vanilla almond butter)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Combine ingredients in a mixing bowl except oil as specified in the box recipe. Instead add 4 tablespoons of peanut butter or peanut butter’s cousin, vanilla almond butter. Hand stir until blended.
  3. Coat muffin pan with non-stick spray, butter or coconut oil.
  4. Divide batter among cups in muffin pan.
  5. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes for large muffins and for 10 to 12 for mini muffins or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Let cool completely before removing from the pan.
WTOP – Want to stick with your 2020 fitness resolutions? Join a team to keep from slacking

WTOP – Want to stick with your 2020 fitness resolutions? Join a team to keep from slacking

WTOP’s article on our facility. You can find the original article here.


We’re in the second half of January. How are you doing with your New Year’s fitness resolutions?

If you’re already struggling with sore muscles and finding time to get to the gym or go for a lunchtime walk, you’re not alone.

The fitness tracking app Strava has data to show that most fitness resolutions start to fade in mid-January.

While fitness fanatics dread the coming of New Year’s resolvers to their gyms in January, most know that the hordes will thin by the end of the month. And they’re right.

According to a well-cited study by the University of Scranton, about 80% of those who had a fitness resolution in year one failed to maintain the habit by year three.

So what can you do to stick with the goals you thought of, perhaps after one too many glasses of Champagne, on New Year’s Eve? Here’s one answer: find a community, or join a team.

Many fitness studies show that people push themselves harder or longer if they’re trying to keep up with a group, or even just a partner.

In talking with a number of coaches, fitness enthusiasts and athletes in the D.C. area, working with others or being a part of a team seems to help them both stay accountable and accomplish more than they could on their own.

Chris Perrin, who founded the District’s Cut Seven, a team-oriented bootcamp-style workout near Logan Circle, said he has always been able to work harder for the good of a team, even on the days he didn’t feel motivated to exercise on his own.

“You show up for other people more than yourself,” Perrin said. “So part of our workout is we’ve built in that you’re working with other people. You have to interact and be collaborative.”

For example, if there are 20 people in a class, the group will be divided into five teams. At one workout station, one teammate might hold a plank for as long as their teammate takes to complete 10 push-ups. Watching someone “suffer” with burning abdominal muscles can motivate the teammate to finish 10 push-ups just a little faster.

Perrin said sometimes it takes a while for new members to feel comfortable getting cheers for doing push-ups or high-fived for running sprints in a gym class, but after four or five sessions, they come around and start to enjoy it. People who are Cut Seven regulars have even found ways to interact with each other outside of the class, helping “teammates” with business plans, attending weddings and organizing social events together.

“This bond is something we all rely on and need in our lives, and don’t get enough of,” Perrin said.


Some trendy gym classes that take place in dark rooms with loud music, with exercisers rushing in during a lunch break, taking a quick shower, getting dressed and heading back to work, don’t engender a sense of community.

That’s what inspired another fitness entrepreneur to work on making his facility in Arlington something akin to a clubhouse for local runners.

Chris Hoffman, a certified personal trainer and running coach, opened Formula Running Center in late 2019, just down the street from the Clarendon Metro station.

His facility, which focuses on training runners using the top-of-the-line Woodway treadmills, TRX suspension trainers, free weights and more, also offers members the ability to drop in midway through an outdoor run, perhaps for a cup of coffee, an energy gel or a bathroom break.

“We’re still in the building process,” he said, “but we’re working to create that community feel. Whether it’s through member appreciation or education, we’re looking for ways we can get our community together.”

One way Hoffman thinks his gym can help running resolvers stick with their goals, and experienced runners keep getting better, is by offering a deep menu of recovery options, along with his workouts.

Hoffman said preventive work, like stretching, foam rolling, soaking in cold tubs and compression sleeve therapy can help runners stay healthy and reach their goals. Formula Running Center offers all of those things in one place.

“Two minutes of stretching after a workout just isn’t enough,” Hoffman said.

He wants to help the entire athlete, and make it efficient, too. Instead of going to five different places each week for classes, a runner can go to one place and make it part of his or her routine.

At some workout venues, like Flywheel, an indoor cycling facility, those who attend can use a screen name on the class scoreboard. So even if people have attended dozens of classes together, they may not know each other’s names.

But Formula Running Center asks its clients to use a piece of chalk to write their names, running experience, call attention to any injuries and note their goals on the floor behind their treadmills so that the class coach, and their classmates, can learn more about them.


There are other ways to become a part of a community, too. You can join a running group, like one led by running coach Tammy Whyte, whose TW Training and Wellness aims to help new runners complete their first 5K or 10-miler.

“I’m not targeting the really fast runners, they generally don’t need that accountability,” Whyte said. “I’m helping someone who needs the coaching support and the community to run their first long race, or to be consistent with their training. The accountability and the community is a big reason they sign up.”

Whyte also runs on her own time with District Running Collective, a group that engages runners of all levels during runs throughout the week. DRC asks runners to introduce themselves to two new people each time they come out.

“With DRC, the community is so awesome, and I’ve met so many people. There’s a lot of diversity, which I like,” Whyte said.


Even for established athletes, like those who played sports in college, it’s not always easy to find that community once they move into the D.C. area and start their careers.

Take, for example, Kathleen Bergin, a former college swimmer, who “got lazy in my 20s, and when I tried to run a mile, I couldn’t finish.”

She is an elementary school teacher who also coaches a Girls on the Run team.

Bergin said she was inspired to coach a team, made up of elementary school-aged girls, who learn persistence and endurance, and also social skills, as a part of a program that leads up to a 5K run at the end of the season. Bergin, however, wanted to be sure she herself could run that distance before she took the reins of a team.

“I ran a 5K, and then did a sprint triathlon,” Bergin said, recalling how she started the program at Murch Elementary in 2010.

“I thought, if these kids can motivate themselves, I can push myself to do more than a 5K. I did my first half-marathon that spring, and my first full marathon that fall. I wanted to run Marine Corps, and now I’ve done five. I’ve done more than 10 half-Ironmans, and two full Ironmans.” And, Bergin said, it all started with that first 5K a decade ago.

She said being accountable to the girls she coaches helps her stick with her workouts, which sometimes can add up to 15 hours a week. “There are days when I would have sat on the couch, but I have more energy, and I’m more motivated to do my own workout after having coached Girls on the Run for an hour.”

While Bergin is now an established endurance athlete, she had some tips for those who are now in the same position she was in 10 years ago: Give yourself small rewards each time you workout (add a new song to your running playlist, for example), and be sure to workout with a goal in mind.

“If it’s the offseason, and I don’t have anything I’m signed up for, I’m more likely to skip a workout. If I have a race, I’m more motivated to get things done.”


Carly Abarbanel, 30, is a moderately competitive rower with Potomac Boat Club in Georgetown. In her case, her teammates in an eight-seat boat won’t be able to get out on the water if she oversleeps for a practice that starts before dawn.

That obligation to the team also keeps her waking up in the dark winter months of January and February.

“I feel lucky to be on a team that takes winter attendance very seriously,” Abarbanel said of her team’s winter workouts that often take place on a rowing machine. “But on the water, I don’t ever let myself snooze. It’s a different sense of urgency and responsibility for sure.”

Abarbanel said that when she graduated from Wellesley College near Boston, where she rowed for two seasons, she tried to take up running but found it hard to motivate herself without a team. It wasn’t until she started training with other people, or even comparing her progress with her brother who lives out of town, that it started to click.

“I need some sort of team if I want to feel fit and feel strong,” she said. “I need people around me to help me do that.”

Now, Abarbanel has no problem shifting her day so she can get to bed around 9 p.m. and wake up at 4:45 a.m. to go rowing.

“People are often shocked when I tell them that, but the way I explain it and justify it to myself is that a lot of people have their fun after work, with kickball leagues or whatever people do. I just happen to have mine before work at crazy hours in the morning. It’s something really unique and special.”

2020 Baselines and Progress Testing

2020 Baselines and Progress Testing


Come one, come all! Every great goal is measurable and we want to help you set proper baselines for your 2020 goals! Each of the classes on January 14th will be dedicated to establishing either your 5K or 1 mile (your choice) baseline for the 2020 running season. Throughout the year we will periodically retest these baselines so that you can track your progress and reevaluate your goals over the year. We will have a makeup session on January 18th from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM for those that cannot make it on January 14th. These classes are open to members AND non-members alike, so grab your friends and family and come out to discover your 2020 baselines!



Formula Running Center – 3101 Wilson BLVD., Suite 100, Arlington, VA 22201


01/14/20 – First Day – All Classes
01/18/20 – Makeup Day – 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM


Members: Complimentary. Free. Zero. Nada. $0.
Non-Members: Complimentary. Free. Zero. Nada. $0.


Members and Non-members. Sign up for this event as you would any other class.


We will have various coaches teaching these classes but here are a few:

Alex Amankwah – Formula Running Center – Coach
Alex is 2016 Olympian who specializes in middle distance. He was also a six time All-American between junior college and the University of Alabama. With ten years of running and coaching experience he’s always had a passion for athletics and wanted to give back to the sport that has done so much for him. All this experience has helped him gain the knowledge to instruct and teach any level individual. Each person is pushing to accomplish a goal and that in itself brings people together. Alex will be the one to help you achieve your goals!

Jim Economos – Formula Running Center – Coach
Jim is an ACE certified personal trainer who believes in the philosophy of total body fitness. An avid runner and triathlete, he has competed in over 80 races around the world. His first marathon was the Athens Classic Marathon, which follows the same route that the first marathoner, Phidippides, ran over 2500 years ago! He is a “Six Star” finisher having run all of the Abbott World Marathon Majors (Tokyo, London, Berlin, Chicago, New York City and Boston.) He has run multiple Ironman events and recently finished Ironman Canada, voted the toughest Ironman event in North America! Jim has lived in Arlington for over 20 years and is a husband and father of two. He can’t wait to help you become strong, fit and fast at Formula Running Center!

Carol Housaman – Formula Running Center – Coach
Carol is an avid runner with 20+ years of racing experience and has competed in all distances. Her favorite races are marathons! She has completed and competed in over 30 marathon events, including 3 Boston Marathon finishes, two 50 mile ultra-distance races, 12 Ironman competitions with 2 Hawaii World Champion finishes. She is certified as a Personal Trainer through the American Council on Exercise along with many others including athletic strength & conditioning, TRX, Kettlebell, HIIT and group fitness. Her primary focus now is sharing her experience by helping others to achieve their own personal fitness and training goals.


If you are interested in more personalized assessments, you can read about those fitness assessments here.

District Track Club’s “Mechanics of Speed” Workshop

District Track Club’s “Mechanics of Speed” Workshop

**Signup is now closed! If you would like to attend please contact our team via email ([email protected]) or phone (703-719-4109) to be added to the waitlist.**


FRC is teaming up with District Track Club (DTC) to bring you this one of a kind workshop! This workshop will be an overview on the importance and purpose of form and mechanics to help you increase your SPEED. On Sunday January 12, Coach Alex Amankwah of FRC, Coach Michelle Howell of FRC and Coach Tom Brumlik of DTC will be helping you become a faster and more efficient runner. Whether you are a speed demon or preparing for your first race, this workshop will have a place for you!

This workshop will include demonstrations, drills, cues on your form and a question and answer portion to ensure you are getting the most out of each step. You will get time to watch the pros breakdown what great mechanics looks like and even work through some drills on your own with feedback from our coaches. This workshop will be open to the public (that’s right, you don’t have to be a member) and be hands-on, so come ready to workout!


Formula Running Center – 3101 Wilson BLVD., Suite 100, Arlington, VA 22201


1:00 PM to 2:30 PM


Members: Complimentary. Free. Zero. Nada. $0.
Non-Members: $25


ANYONE. This is not just for members. We’re opening this up to the entire athletic community. There are only 24 spots available and they are available on a first come first serve basis so sign up here! Please note that once the event is full we will begin a wait list, please contact our team via email ([email protected]) or phone (703-719-4109) to be added.



Not a problem! Just notify our team via email ([email protected]) or phone (703-719-4109) as soon as possible so that others may enjoy the event!


Alex Amankwah – Formula Running Center – Coach
Alex is 2016 Olympian who specializes in middle distance. He was also a six time All-American between junior college and the University of Alabama. With ten years of running and coaching experience he’s always had a passion for athletics and wanted to give back to the sport that has done so much for him. All this experience has helped him gain the knowledge to instruct and teach any level individual. Each person is pushing to accomplish a goal and that in itself brings people together. Alex will be the one to help you achieve your goals!

Michelle Howell – Formula Running Center – Coach
A current professional runner competing for the District Track Club and Under Armour, Michelle is also a USTFCCCA certified coach with over seven years of coaching experience. In 2019 she was a USATF Outdoor Championships semifinalist and ranks 26th in the USA for the 800 meters. She ran for Jacksonville University where she was a two time All- American, conference record holder and program record holder in the 800 as well as a seven time individual A-SUN champion.

Tom Brumlik – District Track Club – Coach
A current Coach at Under Armour and also the General Manager and a Coach at District Track Club. Tom has also served as Assistant Track Coach at American University.




If you are interested in a more personal approach, sign up for our Individual Training Programs or Personal Coaching sessions here. You can read about those Individual Training Programs and Personal Coaching sessions here.

Recipe: Baked Lemon Salmon and Parsley Potato Dinner

Recipe: Baked Lemon Salmon and Parsley Potato Dinner


Baked Lemon Salmon and Parsley Potato Dinner

Serves 1 | Serving Size: 1 plate
Total Time: 20 min | Prep: 5 min | Cook: 15 min
Here is a dinner that is super easy and quick to prepare and cook, when you want to take less than 30 minutes. Try using leftover rice instead of potato to incorporate a resistant starch into your diet. You may find that although 2/3 cup of rice is 30 grams of carbohydrates, your blood sugar won’t rise as quickly using leftover rice, even when heated. Comprising a dinner of protein, vegetables and healthy fats, this is a nutrient rich meal.


  • 3 ounces salmon
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 Yukon gold potato
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1 tsp fresh parsley
  • 4 asparagus spears
  • 1 slice of tomato


Preheat the oven to 425F.

Season the salmon fillet with salt and pepper. Place the salmon, topped with the thin slice of tomato, with lemon wedges alongside, in a glass pie pan in the oven. Bake the fish until it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees F.

Meanwhile, microwave the potato for 3 minutes then add it to the oven. Place the asparagus in a pan and bake it with the fish for the last 5 or 6 minutes. You want the asparagus to be crisp tender.

Plate your dinner. Place the salmon with the tomato on the plate and squeeze the lemon over the fish. Add the potato and garnish the potato with the butter, black pepper, and parsley. Add the asparagus and a bit of garlic salt, butter, lemon and pepper to taste over the asparagus.

Allergens: Milk, Egg, Fish
* Reported allergens are based on listed ingredients in the recipe. If you are purchasing commercially packaged products such as pie crusts, cereal, or pasta, you need to read the label for additional allergen information.