Categories
Food Me

Broken Oven Makes Meal Prep…Interesting?

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Just had to prove that sometimes I wear some make up and some real clothes…aka not workout clothes or sweatpants or scrubs!

This weekend involved some meal prepping! I was on call without an oven so why the heck not right? IMPROVISE and i’m pumped to show you all the goodness that went down in my kitchen!

Broken Oven Makes Meal Prep…Interesting?

so last week my oven pooped out! It hadn’t been working right…like it wouldn’t hold a temp at all OR it would get super freaking hot and NOT shut off! Then one day it was beeping with the message F1 ERROR reading on the screen. I googled and found out it is most likely the function temp panel (or something like that!) and in a nut shell just NOT worth fixing! We have been in our house about 3 years and I’m sure the oven is at least 10 years old? SOOOO off to the oven store this weekend and a new one will be here Wednesday… yay! – i made some amazing cookies before it totally malfunctioned…
right? yuuummm… and then the last batch that after a five minutes nearly went up in flames (parchment paper and all)
I have a feeling you would prefer the first TWO of the three batches…am I right? What are your favorite cookies? I think I would choose GIANT chocolate chip cookies…with lots of dark chocolate…and sea salt on top…and browned butter for the win….(drooling over here…) oh and topped with VANILLA BEAN ICE CREAM

Ok … so where was I… meal prep! oh yeah!

Today since I was stoveless I got out my electric wok, my griddler and my crockpot! What is YOUR favorite appliance? Just curious! I have been wanting to try an air fryer! Any input??

Cauliflower fried rice! And I plan on mixing in some regular rice too – This can be used in so many ways throughout the week! Stuffed peppers, stir fry, taco salad, burrito bowls, or just a simple side! I added in some chopped peppers, onions and cilantro. Quick tip! Buy the frozen cauliflower rice (I used green giant brand) and the pre-chopped veggies – DONE in under ten minutes!
YOU GUYS – this “trick is killer!” – 2 egg whites + 1 egg yolk and whisk. Microwave with a cover for about 90 seconds and be sure and check every 15-30 seconds until its done! Making them in these pyrex dishes make them PERFECTLY round. Be sure and let them completely cool on parchment paper before storing in the fridge. They make a great breakfast prep and I’m thinking also would be perfect on english muffins  breakfast sandwiches – which could also be prepped and frozen in advance.
more breakfast prep! Protein Pancakes! By using my USUAL Shakeology pancake recipe I just tripled it. I got out three small bowls and made all three at the same time. Three small pancakes = one serving/batch. Using my griddle I made the cakes and then let them cool on parchment paper before storing them in the fridge. One serving with an egg round and almond butter is going to be delish!
Cleaned three small zucchinis that I bought at a local farmer’s market and spiralized them!  Can’t wait to make more zoodles this week! I have a SIMPLE spiralizer as pictured below!
I bought a big bag of these small potatoes at Costco! I LOVE them on the grill or roasted in the oven, but since the OVEN is currently out of service – I thought I would try out the crock pot! I cleaned and chopped each small potato in half.  Spray the crockpot with pam and add your potatoes! Drizzle on 1-2 T olive oil, butter, coconut oil or whatever you prefer. Sprinkle on sea salt, pepper, minced garlic and onion powder and cook on high for 2 hours – PERFECTION you guys! Have you ever tried this?
Since it worked so well I decided to do the same thing with squash! I chose butternut squash and kobacha squash! If you can buy PRE CUT! It’ll save you from nearly chopping off your fingers! haha –
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I also picked up a couple yellow zucchini at the farmer’s market! aka summer squash. I peeled and chopped it and sauteed it up in seasonings! Going to be an amazing side for the week!
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Grilled chicken perfection! I used my “griddler” Highly recommend this! – It can be used for a grill, griddler and I even has the waffle plates for it too! The plates are interchangeable and dishwasher safe and easy to change. Preheat the grill closed on high and cook the chicken for seven minutes and DONE.
I also got out my electric wok! I have had it since college and I believe that I got it from my sister who ALSO used it in college! It worked AWESOME for the cauliflower fried rice, browning burger and also sauteeing the zucchini! This isn’t the EXACT one I have but a similar model.
Your turn! What are you eating this week?
Do you food prep?
What is your favorite kitchen appliance when you CAN’T use an oven?

Want in on recipes and prep tips? Just fill out this quick survey HERE

Categories
Food Lifestyle Self Impovement

Struggling with eating…this could help you

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In our society I swear everyone is on a diet, in the pursuit of balance, trying out a new lifestyle such as whole 30, paleo, keto, sugar free – or something else! I do solemnly believe you have to find what is right for you – and it may take some “dating around” to find a lifestyle that works for you. and it has to be something that you can LIVE with for life. SURE you may have to clean up your eating for a bit and have some discipline…but long term…deprivation only leads to yo-yo dieting – and those ups and downs have ONE thing in common … emotional relationship with food.

Struggling with eating…this could help you.

Here is a bit of my story… maybe you can relate. maybe you can’t. But it’s time that I own my story.

When I got to college everyone said i would gain the freshman 15. I was determined to prove them all wrong. And although I ate relatively ok most of the time I eventually did get to a spot where I was so damn uncomfortable in my own skin. I’m so sad to say that. My clothes did not fit the way they used to and things jiggled going up and down the dorm stairs that hadn’t in the past.

My friends and I did go to the college wellness center, but I’m sure we did more socializing then working out. (hey! thats ok too!!!) The end of my freshman year though I had had enough. I hated the way I felt. I saw the number on the scale hit a number I NEVER thought it would and MORE than a number I hated that I had no energy. I hated that I wasn’t active and this was NOT the way my future nurse self wanted to live her life.

So I started running and became totally addicted. (at first in a good way!) My sister and her husband had become owners in a local running store! She was training for a 5k and invited me to join them for runs at the store and we ran in intervals of walking and running – eventually increasing the time running and decreasing the time walking. I was hooked because I loved the feeling of accomplishing something hard. And I loved being able to help others at the store and run along side them! I eventually even became a store employee and grew so much in my shoe, apparel and training knowledge – I helped with group runs and that is where it all began!

Unfortunately I was PLAGUED with injury after injury. Mostly in the form of stress fractures. I would start getting pain in my hip, my leg, my foot, etc – my hip got so bad I was limping ALL the time. Every time I would go in it was the same story:  “YOU NEED TO SIT OUT of running for six weeks. No pounding allowed on that foot/leg/hip etc ”

While I had been becoming more active and putting on more miles I had adapted what I thought were healthier eating habits too. I would have a salad most days for lunch – and cut down on portion sizes throughout the day in other meals and snacks. I have always had a sweet tooth – so if I wanted to have a cookie or if I knew we were going out that night and I was going to have some drinks I would skip dinner to compromise.

No WONDER I was being injured all the time….

During my sophomore year of college I began training for a full marathon. I was having some pain in my right calf during my long runs, but it would feel better if I would just stretch. At this point I was putting on significant long runs of 16 miles and had built up my endurance pretty good in order to prepare for the 26.2 mile run coming up.

But I COULDN’T take the calf tightness and pain anymore and after a TON of testing I found out I needed surgery to relieve the muscle swelling that was going on in my calf. It was either do the surgery or just “take it easy” the rest of my life…which I couldn’t imagine having those limitations at the age of 20.

The periods of being injured was so hard on me. Running had become my stress relief and nursing school is STRESSFUL. I felt like I couldn’t do the one thing that helped me feel like my slate was clean. I felt trapped. Down. Depressed. I do remember that I gave up caring what I eat. Eating cereal out of the box, 2 or three protein bars at a time, mountains of candy wrappers –

and then the guilt. Only this time…I couldn’t “run it off” –

I can’t help that I’m a perfectionist, but it is still something I’m working on every day. Better done than perfect is what I tell myself! I am learning I don’t NEED to eat perfectly “clean.” It’s ok to have treats. I dont’ want to ever live in that mindset of restriction any more. I don’t want to find myself eating bowl after bowl of cereal just for the fact of doing it to find some sort of peace. I am over feeling “guilty” about eating something because I want it.

It is RIDICULOUS.

But sometimes that is easier said than done!

So what has helped me? I got help. I went to a nutritionist. I picked up books about seeing food as fuel. I nerd out about the science behind it. I got a personal trainer to show me things I COULD do while I was injured. I learned how that if I took pride in what I was putting in my body AND adding specific supplements I could avoid injury and stress fractures in the future. I learned and still am learning the value of listening to your body. When you need to rest and when you need to move. Your workouts, body weight, clothing size does NOT define you. Your actions do. Being who you ARE. You don’t have to be the same person you were yesterday…and you can take months off of running..eat  cookies and not die.

Disclaimer – I do promote beachbody products and am a coach with their company. I LOVE that they truly work hard on providing TOP OF THE LINE products and workouts – but something has been missing… the mindset piece.

Yesterday they released something called 2B Mindset – and I think it is going to help a TON of people find peace with food- help them realize that they don’t HAVE to feel guilty about having some treats if they want to. It’s going to help people get out of the diet mentality and STILL lose weight without the workout aspect. Learning how to fuel your workouts is SO KEY TOO and I wish I would have had access to this when I was going through all that I was going through!

I truly don’t feel that their is a certain way of eating that works for everyone…but I do believe that you need to keep trying things if you are struggling with these anxieties or if you seriously don’t even know where to start! And educating yourself gives you a whole new type of strong.

If you would like to learn more about this and see if it is for you – simple fill out THIS FORM HERE.

I am not here to spam you – I simply don’t want you to go through what I have in the past .. and those tendencies STILL come back and haunt me.

What about you?
What is YOUR story?
Have you struggled with any of this in the past?
How did you overcome or is it something you are still working on?

Categories
Food Health Lifestyle Me

I Didn’t Start Eating Cheerios

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When I was 21 I was applying for a certain type of insurance…which required some lab tests – one of those including a lipid panel…ALSO known as testing your cholesterol. Heart disease and high cholesterol run in my family. My grandpa passed away due to heart disease complications, my dad has had open heart surgery, my sister and niece have both had procedures to correct a heart arrhythmia and I myself was born with a heart defect called a Ventricular Septal Defect. Both of my parents have been on cholesterol medication as long as I can recall. I shouldn’t have been surprised that when I got my blood test results that I had high cholesterol too.

But I was TWENTY ONE. I was training for a marathon, my diet consisted of plenty of vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains and everything else that qualifies as a “heart healthy diet” as promoted by the American Heart Association. I wasn’t by any means overweight either. It just goes to show that family history has a LOT to do with it!

So what did my primary care doctor say when she saw the results? “We will keep our eye on it and recheck yearly. Please ensure you are eating a heart healthy diet and exercise also.” Hmm….well I THINK marathon training counts as exercise…and like I said my eating was in check too…

I Didn’t Start Eating Cheerios

As a nurse I know the dangers of having high cholesterol. Having excess cholesterol build up can lead to waxy deposits in your arteries – narrowing the vessels – and can eventually lead to a hardening of the vessels. The narrowing of the vessels makes it harder for blood to flow to your heart, brain and the rest of your body. Also – a piece of the plaque could dislodge and cause a clot in your brain (a stroke) or to your heart (heart attack) Your body NEEDS cholesterol to some extent and it is produced by your body on it’s own. Cholesterol gets around within your body with certain types of proteins: Low Density Lipoproteins (known as LDLs) and High Density Lipoproteins (known as HDLs) The Cleveland Clinic website has a good way to remember which one is good and which one is bad:

Think of HDLs as the “garbage trucks” that haul away excess cholesterol to the liver. The LDLs are the “delivery trucks” that pick up the cholesterol from the liver and bring it to the cells.

So why do we need it? Cholesterol helps your body produce hormones, vitamin D and helps you digest food too! (so really..it’s not completely evil!)

You might find this infographic helpful – resource found HERE

So what is recommended for lowering cholesterol?

1. Adding heart healthy foods to your diet:
​ex: healthy omega-3 fats, whole grains, avoid trans-fats, increasing fiber intake, lean meats
2. quit smoking
3. increase physical activity
4. be at a “healthy” weight
5. alcohol in moderation

hmmm…well I already do all these things and was doing them at age 21 also…so what has changed?

First lets look at my results! (C’mon Marti, get to the juicy stuff!)

So as you can see
my total cholesterol is 211 – borderline high –

HDL (the good cholesterol) is 103 – this is high but that is OK – this means it is COMPENSATING and picking up the extra junk (remember the garbage trucks)

Triglycerides are within normal range

LDL (the BAD cholesterol is also at a good level!
so you might be thinking..ok what is the big deal? Let’s compare to results in the past!

Here are the numbers over the past four years of being checked! I started at 242…This year I’m at 211! And holy cow..look at the improvement in the LDLs too! (142 vs 97??) If I total everything up from the panel I have made a dramatic change of 99 point difference in my overall panel – and MORE if you count the improvement in the HDLs too!
So what is different THEN vs. NOW?

1. I’m not training for a marathon – so maybe some decreased stress on my body? Yes I work out most days and I also have an active job as a nurse. I strive for a balance of workout types: strength training and weight lifting, running, MMA style workouts, HIIT style training and I utilize working out at home AND at the gym. Oh and I’m taking days off too! (usually about two days a week)

2. I use Shakeology every day. Most of the time at work just in a shaker cup with water and ice! Otherwise I blend up a delish smoothie for dessert OR make an awesome pancake in 10 minutes. Shakeology is not just a protein shake. Yes it has protein. BUT it’s focus is on SUPERFOODS (70 of them in fact) Phytonutrients like MORINGA, kale, spiniach, spirulina that prolong life and preserve the good cells. Prebiotics and probiotics for digestion and healing your gut. ANTIOXIDANTS like Goji berry, green tea, camu-camu, blueberries, aceola that FIGHT DISEASE AND INFLAMMATION. Adaptogens (aka STRESS FIGHTERS) as in ashwaganda, maca, reishi mushrooms, chaga mushrooms. Digestive enzymes to help us break down our nutrition properly so that it actually gets utilized. It also has VITAMINS, MINERALS and many of those that are difficult to get in with just eating clean foods. (Sadly so much of what we think we are eating…we actually aren’t)

3. I still eat a “heart healthy diet” – oh – and treats too of course!

4. I follow up yearly with my primary physician and also keep an eye on my vital signs – such as my blood pressure (which is always LOW)

5. I have maintained my weight (of course it does fluctuate..but that is just a fact of life I’m learning!)

So the advice I give you is this.

Focus on the risk factors you CAN control! Like your nutrition, exercise, blood pressure, stress levels and worry less about the things you can’t – like your race and family history. Make small changes EVERY day because they will add up to big ones in the long run!

And FIND OUT YOUR RISK. Ask your family about their levels, find out about any relatives with heart disease and get yourself checked out! Get your lipid panel drawn, get your blood pressure checked, get your blood glucose level checked too. Find out where you are at so that you can IMPROVE.

Invest in yourself. Paying $4 a day for Shakeology is much better than already having to pay for CHOLESTEROL MEDICATIONS FOR LIFE.

1. Does heart disease and high cholesterol run in your family?

2. Do you know your numbers?

3. What changes are you making to improve?

4. To join me in the fight against cholesterol and find out more about Shakeology – email me HERE subject title FIGHTER

Categories
Food

4 weird food pairings I actually love

I’ll never claim to be the healthiest .. I mean I guess it’s how you define “healthy.” To me healthy is moderation and not deprivation. Depriving yourself is no way to live! I won’t get into that today, but simply want to share some seemingly strange food subs that I find amazing and my favorites.

4 weird Food Pairings I Actually Love

1.  DIY chips/flat bread! – sounds weird right? Like WTF not just use regular chips? Well being real here I a lot of times DO use Doritos (make them spicy nacho preferably) – to top salads, serve alongside a protein or to stuff inside a wrap! (don’t knock it til you try it) – but I know I shouldn’t be doing that for EVERY meal and its fun to mix it up and try to DIY! I’ve been trying to up my fiber intake so I picked up some of these Joseph’s lavash wraps! I’ll post a link below – but you can find them at most grocery stores too. And feel free to use whatever wraps you have on hand! Flat out brand work great too!

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees
On a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper lay out your wrap

Bake for about 5 minutes or until crispy and then break apart and season however you like! Or add cheese, nutritional yeast – these are perfect for topping a salad or building your own nachos.
2. Roasted Squash dipped in ketchup. Seriously. When I was little I absolutely DESPISED squash! But I never had it ROASTED. Here is how I do it!
Preheat oven to 425
Prepare cookie sheet with parchment paper
Cut up squash! My favorite is the kabocha squash (but also do butternut and buttercup!).
Spritz with cooking spray and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper!
Roast for about 30 minutes and flip at the halfway point!
devour and thank me later.
3. Eggs and peanut butter. or almond butter. or Trader Joe’s MIXED nut butter. Seriously.. do it.
4. This in my opinion is an awesome way to boost your oats and get in some more protein aka keep me full longer!

Add a packet of oats to a bowl (i love the oat fit brand especially the maple brown sugar!!)

Add some water! I’m going to guess about a half cup?
Add in a half cup of egg whites
Microwave for about 3 minutes…you are going to have to start and stop it and stir it as you go!
When it gets all fluffy and the eggs look cooked…you are done!
Add some milk (non dairy is my choice) and some cinnamon and peanut butter!
Have you tried any of these combinations?
What are some “weird” food combos that you love?
Categories
Food Health Self Impovement

“I don’t know how to eat”

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Those are LITERALLY the words that came out of the mouth recently of one of my clients – and in a world of “low carb” “intermittent fasting” “portion fix” “weight watchers” “if it fits your macros” “high protein” “high fat” “low fat” – I really can’t say I blame her. It’s freaking confusing – You know you want to “be healthier” but how in the WORLD do you know where to start? And then you overthink it…stress about it…and dangn’t stress causes weight gain and overeating and water retention and DAMN you are back at square one!

ok. breathe.

But for real though…am I wrong?

I’m not a certified nutritionist (but I am a Registered Nurse) – so I’m just here to share what has helped me, has helped others and my own personal experiences in hopes that it somehow helps YOU or someone you know!

“I don’t know how to Eat”

I started running during college as a stress outlet..a way to stay active and just SOMETHING to clear my mind and work up a sweat! I was always super active during high school but going to college is different! And who wants to put on the freshman 15 anyways? I HATED running during high school because we alwas had to do it as a punishment – but in college it felt different! I taught myself to just ZONE out while on the treadmill -I could even read my notes to study or read a magazine (currently I still read my favorite blogs and my magazines on my nook while logging miles)
I found myself especially interested in nutrition while I was going to school. I loved my nutrition class we had to take for nursing and I seriously think I read every single health and fitness magazine -I was like a SPONGE for that stuff!

And since I was being more active with running I was also doing some various running events! 5ks, 10ks, training for a half AND working at a running store I figured I better clean up my act with eating too. I started eating salads for every lunch – and looking back there is no way that I was eating enough. I dropped some weight obviously even though that was never my intention! People say mean things when that happens. I was labeled as “anorexic” – crazy runner girl – obsessed – etc etc – that words “Go eat a cheeseburger” btw is not nice.

Here is me running my first half – kinda scrawny I know! BELIEVE me when I say I have been through it all – feeling too small – feeling uncomfortable in my skin too.
I remember this was before going out for a night with the girls and I felt like NOTHING fit right and I just felt yucky about myself. I by no means was obese or ANYTHING like that..but I definitely did NOT feel like me!

And THAT is what I’m TALKING about today – when you are at a low point in your life -and I’m NOT talking about a number on a scale but when you truly want to get back on track and feel GOOD again – YOU want to make make nutrition changes but DON’T KNOW where to start – Let me help you with some of my favorite tips that have helped me over the years!

1. First step – Decide that you actually want to pursue a healthier lifestyle. You seriously have to want to do it and be in the mindset for it! I’m NOT saying you have to go all or nothing – but you have to be committed too.

2. Do a self analysis. How would you describe your current nutrition. Take THREE days and journal it all- whether it be through an app like my fitness pal or just pen and paper! After the three days take a look at what you have written down.
What do you eat a lot of?
What do you NOT eat a lot of?
When do you feel extra hungry?
Any foods that you ate make you feel weird, sick or gross?
How much water did you drink these days?
What were you craving? sweets at night? salty? Super hungry and wanting everything by 9 pm? Just do an analysis and you might be surprised what you find out!

3. Is there anything in your entries that were super surprising that you eat or drink way too much of? For example: maybe you are having THREE sodas every day (and YES it still isn’t OK if they are “diet”) –

***DISCLAIMERI do have a soda every now and again but that is besides the point.***

Why are you reaching for more soda? Are you genuinely thirsty? Are you tired and you are thinking that will give you an extra buzz? Are you having an afternoon tired spell? What could you do for now to cut down to ONE soda a day?

Another example: You put ranch on EVERYTHING. Like we are talking everything drowning in ranch.

***DISCLAIMER #2 I like ranch!***

How could you make a healthier choice and use less?
1. Try a greek yogurt based ranch like Bolthouse Farms! Do half and half with your regular ranch and wean yourself to NOT drowning everything in it –
2. Actually portion out ONE serving and then put the bottle away.

So these of course are just TWO examples – but hopefully that makes sense and you get the idea!

4. Know that it is going to take time to make changes. Sorry – there really truly are NO TRUE “quick fixes” It took you a while to develop these habits and its going to take a while to develop and learn new ones! Be patient with yourself. Trust the process.
5. Know that that you are special and unique and there is not a RIGHT away that works for everyone. Everyone has different needs, likes and habits and that is ok. But you have to find something to try if you truly want to make a change. To me it was all about making small changes that added up to big ones. Not changing everything all at once
6. When you are changing your eating habits…ask yourself “Could I live like this?” I do agree that you will have to make some sacrifices – after all you want to change..right? But if the way you are eating doesn’t “allow” you to ever have a treat – is that really worth it and sustainable? Coming from a dark chocolate and a cookie lover – it sure isn’t worth it to me! SUFFERING AND FEELING DEPRIVED IS NOT HEALTHY.
7. Disclaimer. Yes I’m a beachbody coach – but you should know that I’m also a researcher and have looked into all different ways to help people in their nutrition. There are MANY things I do NOT get on board with – and you are entitled to your opinion of course too! What I do agree with is the nutrition system that beachbody does include in many of its workouts – called the portion fix system. It focuses on eating REAL food and eating them in their correct portions. You should be eating a diet (not dieting but HAVING a diet) that includes all foods: proteins, carbohydrates (yes you need those for energy!), fats, (no they aren’t going to make you fat), fruits, veggies -You should be eating all of these foods in the correct portion sizes and in the right amount of servings too! The portion fix system includes food lists from all the categories of food groups and even color codes them. You do a SIMPLE calculation to figure out how many of each food group you need throughout the day according to your goals! (weight loss, maintenance or even gaining) You choose foods that you like from the food lists that are “acceptable” and just simply put..you eat them. Nothing complicated. Eat real food. Portion control. Get away from processed. Eat enough. Boom. oh and chocolate and wine is included too!

Its a great education tool especially for the portion aspect!

Find support. Seriously. You aren’t alone with whatever you are going through and it’s ok to ask for help and support. Find a tribe. Love them hard. I would love to help you any way I can – in fact you can apply for my VIP group here: docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdC6ea0xi7zqXF1w6pS5gtWnahTVF781-LgtknA8tT4QGXaPw/viewform
What do you struggle most with in your nutrition? What are some changes you are trying to make?
Categories
Food

A New Fall Obsession

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Fall is here! OK well not OFFICIALLY… but Labor Day weekend always gives me all the feels of fall. It’s bittersweet. I love the layers, boot season, plaid and don’t forget the amazing bath and body works FALL SCENTED candles!

You know what ELSE is EVERYWHERE right now and is ONLY going to become more prominent?

SQUASH!

A New Fall Obsession

I used to HATE squash. In fact I believe my sister “lovingly” referred to it as “nuclear waste… ha!

Squash in my mind was just that: squishy mush that mom put butter on to try to make it taste better… (BLAH)

But then kabocha squash came into my life – aka the Japanese Pumpkin! I dared to try it ROASTED.. and my life was changed. I think I LIVED on it while training for my marathon. Was the perfect pre-race and pre longrun meal addition! Ps. Don’t forget to dip it in ketchup!

Here are some fun facts about this squash BEFORE I get to the HOW TO:

1. It is super similar to butternut squash and has only 40 calories per cup and about 5 grams of net carbs per 100 grams of squash. and it TASTES better than butternut. So for those that are watching their carb and sugar intake this is the PERFECT side. And seriously it tastes better than french fries (in my opinion)

2. Kabocha squash is an AWESOME source of iron, vitamin C and B vitamins for ENERGY! Don’t forget all the beta carotene it contains! (you know like in CARROTS) for eye health!

3. All that VITAMIN A it has helps clear up your skin too! BONUS.

4. It’s seriously delish…do I have to have another reason?

Let’s get in the kitchen already!

1. Cut it up! Be careful not to cut yourself…SERIOUSLY.
2. Scrape out the seeds!
3. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
4. Prepare baking sheets by lining them with parchment paper…this helps cut down on the mess and helps cook them evenly!
5. Add squash to the baking sheets and don’t overcrowd the pan
6. Spritz with cooking spray and lightly sprinkle with sea salt and pepper!
7. Bake for about 30 minutes and turn the squash at the 15 minute mark.
8. Let cool. Cut off the green skin. (you actually can eat it, but I don’t like to!) Eat!
​PS. It’s soooo good dipped in ketchup!
Currently bought this ketchup just to try something new and it’s super good!
I use parchment paper SO MUCH. For cookies, roasting veggies and baking any kind of protein in the oven! Helps the food to cook evenly and makes for SUPER easy clean up!
Can’t wait to try out some different cooking sprays! INCLUDING this avocado oil!

This sea salt is one of my favorites for sure!

Now your turn! Do you like squash?
Have you had it roasted?
If so…how do you make it?

Categories
Food

TOO MUCH ZUCCHINI? NEVER!

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I’m all about that zucchini season.. but WTF do you do with it? Well let me SHOW YOU silly! And if you don’t want yours? Hand it over!

Give me all your zucchini.

first up… ZOODLES. Get yourself a spiralizer…like now. They are INEXPENSIVE and you will thank me!

Spiralized zucchini + olive oil in a pan for a few minutes – add salt, pepper and garlic and boom.

zoodles.

add sauce, protein, veggies or whatever your heart desires. You are welcome.

Just another zoodle combo above…

Zucchini Pizza Bites!

Slice zucchini – spray with a cooking spray in a saute pan – sprinkle with garlic powder, sea salt and pepper and flip until TOASTED. Add parmesan on top or other cheese (or nutritional yeast for all you non dairy freaks like me) and eat! Don’t forget to dip in marinara……mmmmm……

Chop up the yellow or green zucchini and add to a pan – throw in some olive oil, shrimp, sausage and onion – cook with your favorite spices and just heat until cooked through. BOOM added veggie awesomeness.
simple is best!
Chopped, seasoned and sauteed and is a SIMPLE side dish! Or add to tacos, wraps, fried rice or other!

Your turn!

Are you zucchini obsessed?

How do you sneak yours in or eat it?

Which one of the above meals looks the best to you?

Categories
Food

Farmer’s Market Finds and a Very Important Question

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hand on head because I rocked a tough workout yesterday (Sunday) – The Shift Shop’s Super Speed 50 – and you know what? it was challenging, but not NEARLY as tough as I made it out to be in my mind!! – Challenge yourself yo.

Ok on to the good finds!

Farmer’s Market Finds and a Very Important Question

brussel sprouts! Ok so I used to HATE these – but actually I don’t mind the steamer bags when you steam them and then season with butter, salt and pepper. I found a recipe for cooking them fresh with BACON so I’m going to see what B thinks! (shh! don’t tell him..) – basically you cook bacon, set aside and then add the chopped fresh sprouts to the pan adding a little olive oil as needed! Season with garlic, pepper and a little balsamic. I figure if there is bacon involved it has to be ok right?
how fun/funny are these carrots! They are PURPLE! I plan on roasting some in the oven with some potatoes and spiralizing some like noodles and sauteeing them! Have you tried these before?
We go through sooooo many onions in our household! B loves onions as do I, and I swear we add them to everything! What do you go through the most of?
Not a farmer’s market grab but a target find! Have you tried these? I’ve seen them, but I thought it would be perfect to try them especially since they are on sale! I plan on sauteeing some, and roasting some like curly fries!
all the Broccoli! This is another veggie we both love….and look how FRESH this is! With broccoli I really keep it super simple! Just add the cut up broccoli to some boiling water and steam it! Just be sure and cook it until you can poke it with a fork and don’t overcook it because then it is mushy! Add some butter or coconut oil and sea salt/pepper. YUM!
Zucchini! Totally going to spiralize all of this and saute in a pan with minced garlic, olive oil, sea salt and pepper! LOVE topping it with an additional dallop of coconut oil – serves as a perfect side dish! Last night I had this with steamed broccoli and a grilled chicken patty from costco!
Flash back to this amazing bloody mary from Saturday! – OMG I love these….and after not having one in FOORREEVVEERR I was due! – SO now for the serious question. (ok…two)
Do you love blood mary’s?
And if so what is your FAVORITE way to make them? Me: give me the ones with a spicy kick and beer chaser of course!Your turn!Any fun produce or farmer’s market finds?
Blood mary yay or nay? And how do you like/make yours?

Categories
Food

Tuesday Transformation Crackslaw

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A few weeks ago I somehow ran across the term for a recipe called “crackslaw” – I was like WHAT IN THE WORLD is crackslaw? Of course this lead to google…which lead to pinterest…which lead to checking out new blogs…to of course trying it out for myself! Crackslaw is a take on coleslaw that is apparently all the rage – think protein meats coleslaw that is made stirfry style – here we go!

Transformation Tuesday and Crackslaw

This recipe is low in sugar – but I’m thinking definitely higher in sodium. High in protein and low in carb – so I would recommend serving it in a pita, tortilla Or with some tortilla chips..mmm…

The Boy’s take: “meh. Not bad. Not over the top good. I think I would rather have straight up stirfry.”

My take: “darnit I can’t put my spoon down I just keep wanting to take more “tastes”

I’ll let you try it out for yourself and see what you think! I based it off of THIS RECIPE from the blog tasteaholics! They even have a “how to video” – Be sure and check out their other posts too!

 I took a pound of venison from the freezer earlier in the day to thaw – you can use ground beef, ground turkey or most likely even chicken. aka whatever suits your fancy/what you have on hand! NEXT: brown the meat until it’s no longer pink and drain some of the fat off.

In a separate saute pan I added about a Tablespoon of sesame seed oil and a finely chopped clove of garlic and cooked until it started to smell DELISH! I then added my already cooked meat and continued to stir it all together! Dump in a bag of coleslaw! I used a 14 oz bag of the tricolor mix from the grocery store but use whatever you prefer. Just make sure it isn’t coleslaw with the dressing on it…haha you want JUST the cabbage mix! To this I added: 2 T siracha, 2 T low sodium soy sauce, 2 T apple cider vinegar, pepper, some pink sea salt, a sprinkling of sesame seeds about a half cup of chopped onion! Keep stirring until the greens start to wilt a bit and its thoroughly warm – BOOM and you are done!

I would say this is about six servings? Figuring SIX servings I entered it into my fitness pal and this is what I came up with per serving:

172 cals
4.7 grams of fat
4.7 carbs and 1.8 grams of fiber = about 3 total carbs
23.8 grams of protein
352 mg of sodium so not as bad as I was thinking it would be!

Serving recommendations: on a wrap/pita, with tortilla chips – in a bowl with rice – or simply grab a fork and dig in like I did!

Been having some deep thoughts about my own transformation…and I don’t mean BODY – I mean mind. When I really dig deep…running not only become my therapy …but also a bit of an obsession. Yes – I wanted to hit goals of completing a race at my best. But after a while I started to feel inadequate in life if my run went “bad” … if I had to stop and walk … I had a day where my legs felt like bricks … etc. Even had thought of “if you can’t go run for an hour why bother?” So many negative thoughts and being unfair and mean to myself.

There are still some days where negativity, anxst, self doubt and evil creep in. That is just life! BUT I’m learning more and more that I’m worth the days of rest. I’m more than an instagram worthy six pack and muscular legs. I truly feel like on the days I move my body I’m doing it because its ENJOYABLE and I want to – NOT because “I have to.” I’m not sure why it’s so much easier to love everyone else…and to stop being so hard on ourselves…but I guess it’s part of my journey! Maybe you can relate?

Your turn! Have you tried the crackslaw? Would you?
Do you have those struggles too sometimes? How do you deal?

Categories
Food

Almond Blueberry Breakfast Bake

I really can’t take credit for this recipe as it is based mostly on Taralynn’s Gluten Free Oatmeal Bake over on her site www.simplytaralyn.com  The one I made is NOT gluten free but does use REAL ingredients and I love that!

Blueberry Almond Breakfast Bake

I had to pick up a FEW ingredients, but I have most everything already in the cupboard and or freezer!

I used 2 packets of instant oatmeal – I grabbed a box of the flavor called “berry crumble” because I thought it would be perfect for this bake! I think it was the ThinkThin brand? Almond flour, White Whole Wheat Flour, Baking powder and soda, vanilla, coconut oil, non-dairy milk (I have unsweetened vanilla cashew milk), eggs, a few pinches of stevia and some frozen mixed berries from the freezer!

Super simple: mix all ingredients together – add the berries last – gently fold them in last so you don’t squish them! Pour into a sprayed pan and bake at 375 for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the middle isn’t too jiggly. You can do the toothpick trick! I drizzled the top with a simple glaze (powdered sugar, vanilla extract and a few drops of water – stir until you get the consistency you like!)

Let me know if you try it! I really loved it and confess to eating batter out of the bowl…ha!

Love Taralynn’s blog and have followed her for years! Check her out!

What other blogs do you follow and love?