Tuesday, June 4, 2013

I'm back!

I know... it has been about a month and a half... and I have no excuse ;) First, some food for thought and then food for your belly!  One of my Co-workers, Lisa Sawyer, shared something with me and it's perfectly put together like this:

Do not rely on willpower or motivation...

Use a trusted system... your routine and environment... 

1.) Keep healthy stuff near you and convenient.

2.) Keep unhealthy stuff away from you and inconvenient

See, simple.... we suck at willpower, but we can learn discipline...  just plan ahead and you won't have to worry about it!


Meat Muffins!


2lbs Grass Fed Ground Beef
2 Stalks of Celery, Chopped up!
1 Red Onion, Chopped
1/2 cup of Flax Seed Meal
1/4 cup of Coconut Flour
2 Eggs - Beaten
Basil, Oregano, Cayenne Pepper, and White Pepper to taste

Preheat Oven to 400 Degrees
Start with two eggs in a large bowl - beaten
Then add the rest of the ingredients
Mix evenly,  and yes with your hands - this is paleo remember?!
Evenly distribute in a muffin tin (12 regular size muffins)
Bake in the oven for 20 - 25 minutes

Let cool and enjoy with some hot sauce or marinara on top!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Excuse Series: Excuse #2

Excuse #2

“I don’t like/know how/want to cook” 

In order to have change you need to make change...

Well, this is where I am going to be a bit tough: learn to cook and learn to like it (well you don’t have to like it, but it will make it easier) ... if health and wellness and a nice bod came in a bottle or a protein bar, everyone would buy it and I probably wouldn’t be writing this blog.

I am not saying you have to be a gourmet chef.  Lucky for you, paleo is probably one of the easiest ways to cook. When I was at college, I would mess up any meal imaginable and come close to burning down the kitchen (I still might do that).  Now I am writing a blog with a collection of my Paleo recipes... I promise anyone can do it.  It was running joke that I was a terrible cook...  and it wasn’t that it took me forever to learn, I just figured out what I liked, what tastes good together, and bought a lot of recipe books!  So yes, you got to do a little work, but things that are worth having take effort.

Can you read? Can you follow directions (and this might not even be necessary) Good, you can cook.  Find a recipe you like, and read then follow the directions.  

Start searching on-line for recipes and search for books to buy or make my recipes!  When you find something you like and that looks easy, its not that bad.  If you aren’t into the recipe route, then put some things together that you like and cook them!  I love onions and tomatoes and spinach and I like chicken, garlic too, maybe some EVOO... I’m sure you are getting the idea.

Turn on the skillet, put some coconut oil on it, three eggs... get another skillet, put some bacon on that thing... TA-DA! BREAKFAST, you are the next top chef.  You never know, you may start cooking and really enjoy it.  I wasn’t a fan at first, but now I really look forward to it.  Who doesn’t love food?  and when you cook you get to pick what you’re eating!  

If you are looking for things that are easy to make because of time, you are at the right blog... I don’t have a ton of time, so I need food that is quick and that I can have all week.  Or something that can be put together after a 12 hour work day.

OR you can learn to love the Whole Foods salad bar,  but your wallet may not appreciate that... that is a whole different excuse for a different time. 

On a side note my friend and Health and Wellness Coach Elizabeth Mauro put up a nice  blog post about making change:  http://www.elizabethmauro.com/2013/04/the-art-of-change/   check it out :)

This recipe is REALLY easy,  and I figured it would be good for this post.

Italian Egg Scramble:

3 Eggs - whisked
1/2 Tbspn Garlic
2 Compari Tomato - chopped into 1/8 slices
A big handful of Arugula 
2 Tbspn of chopped red onion
EVOO or coconut oil for the pan
1/4 cup of tomato sauce
White Pepper to taste

Heat a frying pan on medium and add oil
add chopped onion and garlic and let cook down
Then add arugula and tomato
1 minute after, add eggs and scramble all together!
After the eggs are cooked, remove from pan, and put the sauce and white pepper on top


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Food Behavior Tip #5

Food Behavior Tip #5 - The 'excuses' series

Everyone has excuses.  The more we can eliminate these 'road blocks,' the closer we can get to our goals.  I am going to help you do that. :)

"You can have excuses or you can have results. NOT both"

So with that said, excuse #1:

"I don't have time" (to workout, prepare food, track food)

Did you know there are 168 hours in a week...

We work on average 50 hours a week
Sleep 8 hours per night, 56 hours a week
Spend 5 - 8 hours per week running errands
Maybe (on the high end) 5 - 7 hours per week commuting to work

That is a total of 47 hours of free time.  FORTY SEVEN.  So instead of saying you don't have time, you decided not to make time.  How important is your health and fitness goals?  It takes 1 hour per day (6 days per week) to exercise, and maybe 5 hours TOPS a week to prepare and plan your food.  That is   only 11 hours!  You still have 36 hours to do whatever you want!  Whether it is hang out with your friends, spend time with your family,  do house work, or watch TV.  Either way, it takes about 11 hours out of your schedule to make a better version of yourself... you have the time, make it happen.

We are good at wasting time, if it is important you will MAKE time and find a way.  Decide how important it is to you.

Schedule it in your planner, iphone,  or calendar when you are working out and when you are making food.  Make it an appointment, just like anything else.

Here is a quick and easy recipe for you, NO excuses! :)

Mango Banana 'Frozen' Dessert 


1 cup of Trader Joe's organic frozen mango
1/2 of a banana (regular, NOT frozen)
1/2 cup of Trader Joe's light coconut milk or 365 Whole Foods coconut milk (full fat) - both in the can


Put all ingredients in a Blender or Food Processor
Let the Mango soften up a little bit, but still somewhat frozen
Take out of the blender, put it in a bowl and enjoy!
You can eat it with a spoon (i think it is similar to frozen yogurt) or drink with straw, it is pretty thick!

You can add your favorite protein powder and have it as a after workout smoothie OR put fresh pomegranate on top and have as a dessert.


Sunday, March 3, 2013

Food Behavior Tip #4

Because you do deserve it....

We start 'diets' and we think at some point we deserve a 'treat'

Planned cheats are different than this...  (so yes you can treat yourself here and there) but with the right intention.

I had a bad day, I workout for 2 hours, I am REALLY stressed out, I DESERVE this...

This is a black hole for continuous offenses of bad food behavior... 

You don't deserve that, you deserve better.  You deserve health, energy and a sense of accomplishment.  You deserve a better version of you.  

Reward yourself with other things: like a massage, or an hour to yourself reading a book.  'Do not reward yourself with food, you are not a dog'

Same goes with punishing:  Because you ate something bad, doesn't mean you have to beat yourself up for 3 hours at the gym either, it won't work anyways... you can't and won't out train a bad diet.  So start fresh and move on.

Speaking of healthy rewards....

Paleo Pumpkin Pancakes

  • 1/2 cup of pumpkin puree
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp of cinnamon
  • nutmeg and clover 
  • 2 tbsp of apple spread/butter
  • 2 heaping tbsp of ground flaxseeds

Heat a frying pan at medium to warm up, add a little bit of coconut oil to prevent sticking (I do recommend a non stick pan)
Put all ingredients in a medium bowl
Use a hand mix and blend till even, little to no lumps
Use a ladle and pour single pancakes, if you have a bigger pan you could do more at a time
Cook about 5 minutes on each side (depends on your stove)

Then eat with your favorite topping! I put sunflower seed butter and sliced bananas

You could heat up fruit and put that on top as well

Add protein powder and have after a workout


Sunday, February 24, 2013

Food Behavior Tip # 3

Lose the 'All or Nothing' Attitude

If I asked you to change all of your bad habits at once, you would curse me out and quit trying within a week.  We want to make a lifestyle out of this and support long term health, so baby steps.

You cannot undo everything you have been used to for years, you start with one thing at a time.  One attainable goal. 

Planning your cheats, removing gluten from your diet,  or monitoring your portions,  all would be great places to start.  One goal at time, and as you reach one, you start to introduce something new.  

Congratulate yourself for meeting goals (not with food!), and move forward from the ones you don't meet.  If you slip, move forward and start again.  Dwelling on failures will lead to continued 'cheats.' 

Make a nutritional goal you want to meet this week, and then plan the next one.  See what you can change, one little bit at a time.  Don't wait until Monday, or next month, or after the party you plan to go to.  

Start now.  If you don't you will wish you did a week ago, a month ago or a year ago.  

Paleo BBQ Pulled Pork

  • 4lbs of Pork Shoulder

For the Pork Rub

  • 1 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Chili powder
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 1 tsp Garlic powder

BBQ Sauce

  • 1 Yellow Onion: small to med size
  • 1 Tbsp Minced Garlic (extra if you'd like)
  • 1 7oz jar of tomato paste (I use Bionature)
  • EVOO about 3 tbspn
  • 2 Tbsp Coconut Aminos (optional)
  • 1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/3 cup Water
  • 2 Tbsp Apple Spread (apple butter same thing)
  • 1 Tbsp Spicy Mustard
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Arizona Dreaming (penzey spices) OR if you don’t have this spice you can use the spices from the pork rub
  • 1 tsp Cayenne
  • Black Pepper, and Hot Sauce to taste
  • Tbspn of Honey is optional: I make it without, but it wouldn't hurt :)


Mix together Pork Rub and put on Pork Shoulder
Set the Crockpot on low and put Pork Shoulder in with a 1/3 cup of water at the bottom.
Let cook for about 8- 10 hours

Make the BBQ Sauce!

Chop up the onion and put in a pan on medium with garlic and EVOO.
When the onions start to yellow and cook down, add in the tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, water, mustard, apple spread, coconut aminos, and mix.
Then add spices and mix again.
Let simmer for about 15 minutes.

*I will put the pork in overnight and make the sauce that night and put it in the fridge till the morning.

When the Pork is done, take it out of the crock pot, empty the liquid in the crock pot, leave it on low.
Pull the pork apart with a fork! Then put it back in the crock pot and add the BBQ sauce.  Mix and let warm up for about 15 - 30 minutes in the crock pot.

Enjoy!  Save some for later, it makes quite a few servings!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Food Behavior 101 Tip #2

"We don't plan to fail, we fail to plan"

This is your key to nutritional success, but I could apply this statement to anything.  You NEED to plan.  

There are so many times when I find myself hungry, but because I didn't plan and I had no access to healthy food, I set myself up for failure. So what happens? You eat something you shouldn't, because let's face it, hunger always wins.  

If you are tracking calories, how are you going to hit your numbers if you don't know what you are eating for the day? Same goes for the Zone Diet or any sort of planned portion regiment.

If you follow Paleo, or Atkins, or any sort of food group restrictive diet, and you didn't spend time buying and planning your food, how will you know what to eat, or more importantly,  
how will you make it work?

I typically take time on Sunday to cook food to take during the week.  I may cook more on Wednesday because I run out, or because I eat Paleo and a lot of my food is perishable.  When I am doing zone, I will write out what I am eating for a few days to give myself variety.  This sounds hard to some people, but it is much harder to do well if you don't have a plan.  Make it easy on yourself and plan! Be prepared! 

It's great when all my food is made.  I reach into the fridge and there is dinner!

You want to get to your goals? Then you need to plan, it won't happen on its own.  

RECIPE TIME! This one is one of my favorites... Ian and I have been eating this all weekend!  You can use this sauce on any kind of chicken or meat, I just really happen to like chicken wings :)

Spicy Mango Pineapple Chicken Wings

  • 1 cup frozen mango
  • 1 cup frozen pineapple
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 3 Tsp Coconut Aminos (This is a much lower sodium and healthier alternative to soy sauce, you can find it at a health food store or on luckyvitamin.com)
  • 1 Tsp Garlic
  • 1 Tsp Habenero Hot Sauce (I used Scoville Units Habenero Orange)
  • Sweet Paprika and Chipotle to taste
  • 1/2 Tspn Cayenne
  • 2 tsp of apple cider vinegar
  • 4lbs of Chicken Drums and Wings

Preheat oven to 450 degrees
Heat the mango, pinneapple, and coconut oil on medium in a pan
Once fruit is soft add the hot sauce, garlic, and coconut aminos.  
Keep stirring so the fruit doesn't stick.
Once mixed together add spices
Let cook for about 3 - 5 more minutes.
Put everything in a food processor or blender and let it puree

Set up your chicken, and lay the pieces out so they aren't on top of each other
Rinse and dry off chicken, put about 3/4 of the sauce on the chicken, leave some for when it is cooked.  
Put the wings in the oven, and let cook for 30 minutes.  Take out of the oven and put more wing sauce on the chicken and put back in the oven for 5 minutes.

Let it cool down and enjoy!!!!

Make it a meal:  Have the sauce on chicken breasts (the wings are fine too!) with cauliflower rice (send me a message for this recipe, it is super easy!) and mixed squash for a side! 

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Food Behavior 101 - Tip #1

With this blizzard business going on I have time to start this blog! woo hoo!

Food Behavior Tip #1!

This is your first step...

Develop an awareness of what you are eating, so this means....
Track your food:  It is important to track your food, why?  

1.)  Overall Awareness : You don't really know what you are taking in unless you write it down.  I don't remember what I wore yesterday, how the heck am I going to remember every little thing I ate?! Well to be honest you won't and you definitely won't remember the week. In order to makes changes to a healthier lifestyle, we have to see what needs change, no guessing.  

2.) The Amount and Type of Foods:  If we know what you are taking in, and how much, then we can help you reach your goal.  If you aren't tracking, and you aren't reaching your goal, there is no data to analyze to see what is happening.  

3.) Accountability: If you are tracking your food, and you have a trainer or a nutritionist to show it to, you are most likely going to go for the orange and not the cookie.  It helps keeps you honest (and be honest otherwise this process won't work!), meaning "I ate enough yesterday" well, according to your food log, you were 300 calories below your mark.  And just because no one saw you eat it, doesn't make it healthy or calorie free (I wish!)  

The idea here is if you aren't having success towards your goal and you are tracking your food, then you have a resource to find out why.

So while we are all chomping down on comfort food because we're snowed in (why the heck to do we that?! - another post for another time) you need to track it and how much.  When you look back at your food log, since you decided to pace back and forth past the cookie plate, you will know how many times you grabbed one and ate it.  It puts your food habits in prospective.  If you know what you are taking in, we can begin to make positive changes towards your goal.  

How to do this:
  • Myfitnesspal.com, mydailyplate.com, fatsecret.com or any other phone app or online tracking: (if you fill in the info correctly, the program is self explanatory, any questions about it though, e-mail me! and for weightloss and gain clients, shoot for 1 pound per week NOT 2)
  • Excel spreadsheet: (some of my clients do this, I am a Mac user, so I can't help you on the set up of this SORRY!)
  • The Old Fashion way: Write it down!  make sure you write your portions! (and calories if applicable) 

*If you are on a Paleo diet, Primal Diet, or a similar clean eating program that is all-you-can-eat  where calories aren't really a focus, you should still know your portion sizes.  It doesn't matter how healthy, you can still over-eat or under-eat foods. It is easy not to eat enough when you are eating these foods, or easy to take in too much of protein, fats or carbs.  

Side Note:  Track how you feel that day, mood, energy level, exercise and sleep.  This can help make adjustments towards your goals as well.  If you think you may have food allergies, food tracking can be a good resource to see what may be bothering you.

I have been tracking! Now what do I do?! - Take a look at what you're eating on the regular, and how much each day.  Consult with your Trainer or a Nutritionist (or any other QUALIFIED individual) and have them help you with the next steps of your goals.  Everyone will have a different log and different habits and different goals.  It's good to have a different set of eyes to put YOUR habits in prospective.  Making small changes at a time will lead to success and lifestyle change. (Remember we are trying to change the behavior and make better choices!) If I tell you change everything at once, you will set yourself up for failure. Small steps :)

THE FUN PART: So, with every tip, I will post a recipe.  This one happens to be a favorite.  The great part about it, even when I share it with my boyfriend we still have it for a couple days!  If I have extras I know I won't go through, you can  freeze it and break it out later!

Paleo Chili on a Sweet Potato: 


  • 1 Yellow Onion - Diced
  • 1 Red Pepper - Diced
  • 1 Green Pepper - Diced
  • Bionature Strained Tomotos - 1 glass container
  • Bionature Tomato Paste - 1 7oz glass container
  • Tablespoon of Minced Garlic
  • 1/4 cup EVOO
  • 4 Sliced Bacon Organic and Nitrate Free - cooked (optional)
  • 1lb of Grass Fed  Ground Beef (you can use 2lbs of this but skip the lamb)
  • 1lb of Ground Lamb
  • 1tsp Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • Garlic Powder, Basil, oregano to taste 
  • 1 Fresh Jalepeno- small
  • Sweet Paprika and Chipotle to taste, I also use Arizona Dreaming spice from Penzey Spices


  • Heat big pot on medium with EVOO and garlic.
  • Start cooking bacon in a separate pan, when done and cooled crumble up into bacon bits.
  • Start cooking the ground meat in a separate pan.  The beef is ready when it is almost cooked through.
  • Add chopped onion and peppers and let cook for 5 - 10 min
  • Add strained tomato and tomato paste, mix and then add bacon and mix and let simmer, and then add meat.
  • Add spices and let simmer, bring heat to low, I usually let it sit for 15 - 30 minutes.
Have over a sweet potato (usually take 30 - 45 min to bake) and enjoy!