How Everyone Can Benefit From Having A Coach

The value of having a coach is undeniable

 

A coach has the ability to look at the big picture, their view from the outside allows them to pick up on movement patterns, make necessary adjustments, and drive people to their maximal potential. Without a coach, making the same errors again and again can hold us back from reaching our goals or worse become injured.

 

With each workout, I am always focused on moving my best, keeping good form & moving with intention. Over time I have learned how my body moves, I know which movements are strong and which need a bit more focus and attention. Occasionally, limitation will hold me back. The weights will be too heavy and I will need to lighten the load, my mobility will limit getting full range of motion, or my focus will be elsewhere and I will get through the workout without really noticing how I am moving.

 

And then sometimes I think I am moving properly only to be told that something is a bit off.

 

I was in Coach Dan’s class and we were doing Kettlebell Swings, a movement I pretty much thought I had down pat. But lo and behold Coach Dan was watching with that face that says “something here is not right…your movement could be better”. And this is where, we as athletes, need to leave our ego aside and accept help.

 

Luckily, my ego has been crushed so many times it’s use to the beating.

 

So, I paused for a moment and listened to the coaching cues Dan had for me.When I got back to the kettlebell, I was more aware of my movement and took a brief second to think about how I was going to adjust. Coach Dan came back around to see my adjustments…did it make it better, worse, the same? I placed the kettlebell down and Coach Dan asked what I had done different. A quick confirmation that the changes I made actually did make the movement better and I was off to finish the rest of the workout.

 

Although the adjustment to my kettlebell swing was minor, I would have never picked up on it myself. I could have gone forever making this error if there wasn’t a coach looking from the outside. I doubt my movement fault would have led to injury, but I already started making connections between the errors I was making in the kettlebell swing to other movements that I tend to struggle with…could there be a connection?

 

Jicama

Have you tried Jicama?

It’s a delicious root vegetable that you more than likely skip right over. It is referred to as the “Mexican turnip” and it is a cross between a turnip and an apple. The outside has a brown skin that needs to be cut off, but the inside is a delicious combination of sweet and crunchy.

I came across this recipe on Paleomg and I wish I had found it sooner, it is amazing. This would be a great side dish to bring to a picnic (I realize my timing is off, but better late than never).

Ingredients:

1 Jicama

1 Green Apple

1 Red Bell Pepper

1 Jalapeno

½ Red Onion

Zest of a Lime

Lime Juice (approx 1/4c)

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

Cilantro

Salt & Pepper

 

Directions:

Peel the jicama and thinly slice (julienne) along with the rest of the vegetables.

 

Whisk together the Lime Zest, Lime Juice, Olive Oil, Cilantro, Salt & Pepper

 

Combine the dressing with the vegetables

 

I made a huge batch and it stayed well in the refrigerator for the entire week.

 

P.s. I just saw some recipes for jicama fries!!!! I will be making those soon and will get back to you!

Strawberry Poppy Dressing

Its strawberry season! That means you’ll need a strawberry recipe or two. Picking strawberries is one of my favorite summertime activities, but in CrossFit True fashion I always make it into a competition….who can pick the most. It ends up being a bit on the expensive side and when I get home the act of washing and storing them all can be tedious, but I have strawberries for a long time.

But then what do you do with all those delicious strawberries?

Enter Strawberry Poppy Dressing

The original recipe came from Paleomg, but of  course I made some adjustments. This was so delicious it taste similar to a strawberry milkshake.

The Recipe:

  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • ¼ cup  Olive Oil
  • 2 tablespoons  Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds

My adjustments

My strawberries were mighty sweet and thus I omitted the honey.

I was also feeling lazy and didn’t want to peel garlic so I left that out as well.

And finally, I added a bit of water so it wasn’t so thick.

All in all it was still very delicious.

 

I do have a warning.

You might not want to eat this on a first date or if you don’t have access to a mirror and floss….those little poppy seeds love to get jammed in between the teeth.

 

Recipes: Coconut Aminos

Have you ever purchased something for a single recipe and then thought…what the heck and I’m going to do with all the rest of it. Well, enter Coconut Aminos. The other day I overheard a few of our members talking about having to buy coconut aminos and now what are they going to do. So, here is a list of some of my favorite recipes that call for coconut aminos.

 

Beef & Broccoli

 

She calls it Thai Beef with Basil, but I like it with broccoli too so I have changed the name. This is a great, quick meal.

 

Paleo Orange Chicken

 

Literally, my taste buds were dancing.

 

Carrot-Ginger Dressing

 

If you have ever had the pleasure of going to all you can eat sushi with me, you know that I will order at least 5 of the house salad (this is not an over ex) because they are topped with delicious ginger dressing. And when I figured out how to make it myself, it was even better.

 

Sushi

 

Speaking of sushi. If you like to dip your sushi in soy sauce, next time try coconut aminos. I don’t go out for sushi often but when I do I am the crazy lady with a bottle of my own “soy sauce” (coconut aminos)

 

Beef Jerky

 

Homemade beef jerky is great and mine is always marinated in coconut aminos.

Those are just a few of my favorite recipes, ones that are in constant rotation, but there are plenty more. Check out The Coconut Mama, she has a list of 50 things for coconut aminos.

Coconut Flour Tortillas

These coconut & tapioca flour tortillas are perfect for your next “Taco Tuesday”. I used them in a Chicken Enchilada Bake and had a few left over. After a few days in a tupperware container I ended up tossing them in the toaster oven. They came out more crunchy (not able to fold them) kind of like a flatbread, but still delicious. I just broke it up and dipped them into guacamole.

 

The original recipe can be found at TheCoconutMama.com (I made a few changes)

 

Ingredients

  • 2½ Cups Almond Milk    Coconut Milk (not the can stuff, the kind you find near the almond milk)
  • 4 large Organic Eggs
  • 2 Cups Tapioca Flour Starch
  • ½ Cup Coconut Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon Flaxseed Meal      Chia seeds (these could be completely omitted)
  • ½ Teaspoon Sea Salt
  • ¼ Teaspoon Vanilla Extract (optional, but recommended when using tortillas for sweet crepes)

Instructions

  1. Heat an 8” frying pan over medium heat. Depending on the type of pan you are using, you may want to melt a ½ tsp of coconut oil to ensure the tortillas don’t stick.
  2. In a mixing bowl, add together the almond milk and eggs. Blend or whisk well.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and continue mixing until there are no clumps of flour.
  4. *Ensure the pan is well heated before moving forward*
  5. Using a ½ cup measuring cup, scoop the mix and pour onto the center of the pan. Quickly rotate your wrists and tilt the pan until the mixture covers the entire bottom. This will create an 8” tortilla.
  6. After a minute or so you will see the edges starting to lift. Using a wide spatula, flip the tortilla. Cook until golden brown and flip once more to brown the first side.
  7. Remove from heat and allow to cool on a baking rack.
  8. Add a tiny amount of coconut oil to your pan and begin again.
  9. This recipe makes twelve 8” tortillas. These can be served immediately, stored in the refrigerated for 2 weeks or in the freezer for longer.

Smoky BBQ Sauce

BBQ Sauce (753x800)

Ingredients:

1 Onion

2 garlic cloves

1 can (6oz) tomato paste

1 can (14oz) tomato sauce

~6 dates (softened in hot water)

½ cup unsweetened apple sauce

¼ cup balsamic vinegar

¼ cup white wine vinegar

3 tbsp Dijon mustard

2 Tbsp coconut aminos

2-3 Tbsp fresh ginger

½ tsp cinnamon

1 tsp smoked paprika

3-4 dried chipotle peppers

1 cup water

¼ tsp all natural liquid smoke

 

Directions:

 

  1. Make sure your dates are soft by soaking them in hot water (maybe 30 minutes or less). This will just help the mixing process. Your blender blades will thank you.
  2. Depending on how good your food processor is you won’t need to cut up everything too much because you’ll be blending it all anyway.
  3. Throw everything into your food processor. I threw everything into the pot I used to cook it and just used a stick blender to mix it up. (Caution: this did splatter a good amount, but with caution it can be avoided)
  4. Bring it to a boil, then lower heat and simmer 45-60 minutes until it is thicker. Stirring occasionally.
  5. If you want it to be smooth you’ll need to strain it through a cheesecloth. But truly it’s not needed

 

It’s that simple.

 

This makes a good bit of bbq sauce. The first time I made it I used in on pulled pork and still had 2-16 ounce mason jars full. I kept one in the fridge for dipping sweet potato fries, grilled chicken, & used on top of burgers. The other jar I froze.

Homemade Mayonnaise

Mayo3 (621x800)

Mayonnaise, it might not be the first thing you think of when revamping your diet, but if you make it yourself you’ll be eliminating the harmful ingredients. Now, I’m not someone who smears mayo on my sandwiches everyday, but I have found that the addition of homemade mayo to some recipes adds a great deal of deliciousness. 

 

Homemade mayonnaise can also be used as the base for making your own creamy dressings and it is the base of “awesome sauce”. What is “awesome sauce”???? Basically it is any sauce I make using homemade mayo as the base…and it is always AWESOME! Think chipotle aioli, yep it’s that good. We will talk more about “awesome sauce” in an upcoming blog…stay tuned.

 

I do need to warn you, you must be responsible with your use of this mayo. Just because you are making your own mayo does not mean that you can eat as much as you want, it is still mayo and therefore high in fat.

 

On that note let’s talk about the benefits that comes out of making your own mayonnaise. As I mentioned, making your own mayonnaise will eliminate the harmful ingredients. In traditional mayonnaise that you buy at the grocery store you will find that it contains two ingredients that you don’t want to eat…..soybean oil and sugar.

 

Obviously, sugar is something that we try to avoid, with new research coming out all the time, it appears that sugar is more harmful than prior generations thought. It is also really easy to (over)consume so if there are anyways we can eliminate it, we are taking a step in the right direction.

 

Soybean oil is a little bit trickier as it’s doesn’t get the media hype like sugar does. What foods do you often find soybean oil? Margarine, shortening, mayonnaise, dressings, imitation dairy, and baked goods ←———– did you notice a trend there…..those are not the foods we would consider to be part of a healthy diet. The reason it is used so often is because it’s nearly flavorless on its own, plus it’s easily and cheaply produced.

 

Being easily and cheaply produced has it’s drawbacks.

  • It’s artificially hydrogenated to improve shelf life, but hydrogenated=Trans Fats and unless you’ve been living under a rock you know the dangers of trans fats.
  • Soy in general is harmful
    • Over 90% of soy is genetically modified
    • Contains estrogen-like molecules that disrupt hormone levels
    • Have chemical properties that are believed to decrease the body’s ability to absorb nutrients

If you have been duped by marketing and fancy packages and thought that buying the “olive oil” version would eliminate the harmful ingredients, I would urge you to read the label. Although it contains olive oil, the first ingredient (and therefore the most prominent) is soybean oil. Avoid all that by making your own!

 

How to Make Homemade Mayonnaise

 

Ingredients:

1-Egg Yolk

1-dollop Mustard

1-TBS Apple Cider Vinegar (or fresh squeezed lemon juice from ½ lemon)

1-TBS Warm Water

1-Cup Light Tasting Olive Oil (you can use regular olive oil, but the olive oil flavor will come thru)

 

Tools:

Stick Blender (this makes it super easy)

 

Sweet Potato Cranberry Bliss

Tried this recipe the other day and it ended up being pretty amazing. The picture doesn’t do it justice…but my tastebuds are happy. Here is what I did:

What I used:

2 sweet potatoes dices

1 bag of fresh cranberries

3 Fuji apples (mine were small so I used 3)

Cinnamon

GrassFed Butter

What I did:

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Dice up sweet potato and apples
  • Tossed the sweet potato, apples, and cranberries together in glass baking dish
  • Sprinkled Cinnamon on top
  • Added about 1 tablespoon of GF Butter…diced it up and spread little pieces about.
  • Cover with foil
  • Bake about 1 hour
  • Then mix up all the flavors

This is great both hot & cold and would make an awesome side dish for the holidays. I have been eating it mostly cold because I don’t like waiting for food to get in my belly.   It has a little sweetness from the apples (you could always use green apples to lessen the sweetness).

Enjoy!

WLC: Video Series

Sorry guys, but I don’t have a “What I’m Eating” but it will be back next week. I wanted to work on some videos for you and get some photos because videos/photos make blogs better.

Anywho, I wanted to make sure you knew about our awesome YouTube Channel. Last year when we did the WLC I did some quick videos and they are worth checking out.

 

Just because the label reads “5 grams” of sugar doesn’t mean it has added sugar. You need to take a look at the ingredients list as well.

Here are some of the foods that I eat…most of them should be WLC approved, but the rules are always changing.

Seriously, the best thing ever. I eat these all the time. Multiple times a week.

Hate cutting sweet potatoes? This is  how I do it when I am making sweet potato “fries”

This last video is doing food prep for the whole week. If you have a plan, it’s not terribly difficult.

 

 

Hope you enjoyed those as I will be doing more of them throughout the challenge. IF you have any suggestions on what you would like to see, let me know.

Sweet Treat Alert!!!!

Have a craving for something sweet? Yea, me too…everyday…all day. Plus its summer and I think its my job to eat copious amounts of ice cream. Luckily, I came across this AMAZING strawberry-banana ice cream that you can make at home in a jiffy and you don’t need an ice cream maker…..SAY WHAT!!!!!!

I found this recipe on NomNomPaleo, you should check her out…your taste buds will be happy.

This is so super simple & delicious. All you need is:

3 frozen ripe bananas
~1/2 frozen strawberries
~1/2 cup Full Fat Coconut Milk
~teaspoon vanilla extract

Here is what you do:

Chop up the Bananas & Strawberries, toss them into a food processor. Add in the coconut milk & vanilla, and blend.

 

If you eat it right away it’s similar to soft serve. If you freeze it, you need to let it soften a bit before consuming, it has more of an Italian ice texture.

I may or may not have added chocolate chips to mine.

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