Friday, September 6, 2013

Ch-ch-ch-chia Seeds!

Don't mind my Spiderman glass. Have you heard of these little guys? If you haven't, listen up!

  1. Chia seeds are a great source of fiber. The ADA recommends 20-35g of fiber/day, but the average American only gets 12-15g! A single serving of chia seeds (1 tbsp) provides 42% of your daily fiber intake. If you count your macros, adding chia seeds is a great way to make sure you're hitting them!
  2. Chia seeds can also make you feel fuller faster, because although they're little seeds, they absorb up to 10x their weight in water and expand. I love sprinkling chia seeds on meal replacement smoothies or yogurt to make meals on the go more satisfying. Feeling fuller faster for longer = eating less & no impulse snacking!
  3. Chia seeds have a TON of omega-3 fatty acids - they're the most concentrated plant source you can consume. Chia seeds have even more omega-3s than salmon, ounce for ounce! Omega-3's protect against arthritis and heart disease, help cell regeneration, and contribute to having healthy hair, skin and nails.
You can find them on the shelf at your local grocery store, or you can buy them (cheaper) online!

Banana Peanut Butter Post-Workout Shake with Chia Seeds:
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 banana
  • 2 tbsp PB2
  • handful ice
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  1. Blend everything but the chia seeds
  2. Pour into a glass and sprinkle chia seeds on top
  3. Delicious! Tastes like dessert. 

Sunday, September 1, 2013


Don't put this in your body. This is not real food. 

And don't get me wrong, I love s'mores! Of course I believe in eating well, but not depriving your body of things you love. 

That said... Real food doesn't come individually wrapped. Are we so lazy that we'll happily trade the quality of our food for the "luxury" of not making it ourselves? Food (s'mores especially) should be made with tender, loving, care - not processed in a factory, stabilized with preservatives, etc. 

You are what you eat, so say no to cheap, easy, and fake!

Friday, August 23, 2013

What's In My Gym Bag?

  1. Water - 
    It's so important to stay hydrated, and it's such a waste of time to keep refilling small bottles. You know that feeling, when you finish a workout and could drink a small lake? Carrying a gallon of water means you can chug to your heart's content! Divide your bodyweight by 2 - that's the minimum number of ounces of water you should consume in a day! Yes, you can over-consume water, but as long as you're drinking it gradually over the course of a day, you'll be fine. If you break a sweat at the gym daily, naturally your water consumption should be higher. Aiming for 1 gallon/day works well for me! Plus, you can get a gallon (128oz) of water for $0.99... OR a 16oz bottle for $1.99?
  2. My yoga mat and towel - If I have time, I loooooove going to hot yoga after the gym. Being warmed up from the gym combined with the heat of the studio = magic. So flexible, and I feel INCREDIBLE afterwards. I heart my YogiToes Skidless Towel too (YogiToes is an awesome, awesome, awesome company! Information here on some of the great things they do, if you're interested. I also love my YogiToes Headbands - I have a freakish collection of these things. They're so wide that they stay in place even through the sweatiest of yoga sessions!)
  3. Yoga shorts - 
    I just can't bring myself to wear these little spandex shorts to the gym, so I bring them to change into afterwards. These, by lucy athleticwear, are some of my favorites - and they're on sale right now!
  4. Facewash - 
    Yes, sweating is great for your skin (it opens your pores and helps your body eliminate impurities) but not if you just LEAVE all that sweat on your skin when you're done! Bring your facewash to the gym so you can wash up ASAP afterwards! Choose something gentle because your skin is extra sensitive while you're hot and sweaty. I like CeraVe . If you hit the gym after work, you should also wash your face BEFORE you workout, to remove any makeup. Sweating with makeup on is like begging for clogged pores. Why would you.
  5. Towels - 
    One hand towel for mopping up mid-workout sweat (gross, I know, but I'm not sorry) and a smaller one for washing up afterwards. Don't just splash soap and water on your face, use a washcloth! You need to scrub a little to actually get the gunk off.
  6. Wallet, flip flops, sweatshirt, headphones...
  7. Basics. Never walk barefoot in a locker room. Ever.
  8. My NorthFace Borealis backpack - 
    Does double duty as a backpack and a gym bag! The bungee straps on the outside are perfect for transporting my yoga mat. Don't be a square and buy it in black (like everyone else you know). I went for the charcoal and fuchsia... the brighter, the better! Stand out!

Build Your Own Burrito/Lettuce Wraps + Whole Fruit Margs

These are awesome. I was going for a fresh / delicious / kid-friendly / healthy / fun summer dinner... And I totally nailed it, if I do say so myself.

I served large Romaine leaves (these are your tortillas) with Shredded Chicken, Cilantro-Lime Quinoa, Organic Black Beans, fresh Guacamole and Pico de Gallo, and of course, shredded cheese. If you're lame or you're a small child, you can layer a tortilla under your romaine leaf before wrapping for a sturdier burrito. 

Shredded Chicken:
Tastes genuinely Mexican and DELICIOUS! Finally figured out how to do shredded chicken without a slow cooker... Ain't nobody got time fo dat.

  • 2 (8oz) cans tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 3 garlic cloves (chopped)
  • 4 tsp. chili Powder
  • 1 tsp. ground Cumin
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tbsp. EVOO
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 1.5 lbs chicken boobs

  1. Mix tomato sauce, vinegar, garlic, chili, sugar, oregano in a medium bowl.
  2. In a large pan, saute onions in EVOO for a few minutes, until they're starting to soften.
  3. Add chicken boobs to pan, lay flat. Cook for 3 mins on one side, then flip and cook for 3 mins on the other.
  4. Add tomato sauce mixture to the pan and increase heat to a boil, then lower to a simmer and cover. Let cook for 20 mins!
  5. When the chicken boobs are completely cooked through, remove them from the pan and shred with two forks. 
  6. Return all shredded chicken to pan with tomato sauce and cook for another 5 mins.
  7. YOU'RE DONE! Remove from heat and let it cool so sauce thickens and soaks into chicken.

Cilantro-Lime Quinoa:
I've said it before and I'll say it again, I LOVE QUINOA. Especially this quinoa.

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 lime
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 tsp agave (or sugar)
  1. Make quinoa! Easy peasy but I'll explain anyway: Add quinoa to pot with 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then immediately cover and turn the heat down to a simmer. Cook for 12-15 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat, fluff quinoa with a fork, cover and let sit for ~5 mins.
  3. Dump quinoa into bowl and stir in cilantro, juice from lime, sugar, and garlic. 
  4. You'll probably want to add salt, but that's up to you. 

Even the leftover burrito-droppings on my plate look scrumptious. Admit it. 

Whole Fruit Margaritas: 
Saved the best for last, these things are incredible. Best/healthiest/most refreshing margaritas you'll ever have. Sidenote: Having a great blender really helps here.

Ingredients: (makes 4)
  • 1 lime (peeled)
  • 1 lemon (peeled, halved)
  • 1 orange (peeled, quartered)
  • 4 oz Tequila
  • 2oz Triple Sec

  1. Put everything in the blender w/ a few handfuls of ice
  2. BLEND IT!
  3. Enjoy. 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Origins 'Clear Improvement' Activated Charcoal Mask

WHAT IS IT? Face mask with activated charcoal to remove impurities from your pores. 
  • Contains NO: parabens, sulfates, fragrance, synthetic dye, petrochemicals, phthalates, GMOs, triclosan 
COST: $16 for 1.7oz

Okay, this stuff looks like shit. It goes on sort of slimy, but I love how thin it is. A little bit goes a LONG way, which makes me feel better about the cost per use. 

I like using masks when I get back from the gym or hot yoga - while I'm still hot and sweaty and my pores are open! Took ~8 minutes to dry, but I left it on for 15 minutes, just for good measure. Felt a little tingly. 

I hopped in the shower to rinse it off - it gets pretty slimy again when you get it wet, definitely don't recommend trying to take it off with a washcloth. Noticed my skin felt clean and fresh, so I didn't follow up with any face wash. 

AFTERWARDS: I glow. I am literally glowing. My skin looks clear, and feels amazing! Even my large crater-pores are empty and even. No redness, and the fierce blemish hiding in my hairline has calmed down (at least for now). My skin isn't dry or tight, just...radiant and smooth! A few stubborn blackheads remain, but there are definitely fewer! 

I think next time, I'll leave it on even longer. There will definitely be a next time. Might even try it on my boyfriend's nose... Who nose. 

Chili + Garlic Chicken with Lemon Quinoa

What inspires me in the kitchen? Well, usually whatever's left in the refrigerator. I call this a garbage bowl.  

Upon taking inventory of the fridge, I discovered:

  • Pre-grilled chicken breasts from the grocery store,
  • A cucumber towards the end of its life,
  • And an extensive collection of salad dressing and other condiments. Hm. 

To breathe new life into this sad, pre-cooked chicken, I covered it in olive oil, chili powder, and garlic powder, then threw it on the stovetop to revive it. However, I decided that there was no way this chicken could be left on its own - it would have to go in a salad. 

I thinly sliced the cucumber, cut the slices into quarters, and put the pieces in a small bowl and and left them to marinate and chill for awhile in some Caesar dressing. 

Quinoa, prepared as usual, then I added lemon juice and sea salt. Stuck it in the fridge. (Quinoa is a staple of my diet. People started eating it 7,000 years ago and never stopped, for good reason! It is a good source of essential amino acids and calcium and iron! It contains many healthy fats, and is considered a complete protein source, unlike most grains. Don't waste your time with rice, quinoa is where it's at!) 

Chopped up a head of romaine, then layered heaping spoonfuls of cold lemon quinoa, followed by a scoop of Caesar-cucumbers, and finally topped with chicken!