Friday, 10 August 2012 16:11

Quinoa - The Superfood

[caption id="attachment_6331" align="alignright" width="292"]quinoa_superfood_vegan_vegetarian Source: NY Times[/caption] Superfood, Superfood, Superfood.  This has been all the rage lately and I'll be honest it is downright confusing to me.  Seems that everything has become a superfood, that is outside of the processed stuff at the fast food chains.  If you think about it for a second a smart diet of fruits and vegetables is going to be super.  Your micro and macro nutrients are covered in the meal and thus you will feel super.....or at least I do. This got me to thinking about how they define the term superfood.  Here are few of the definitions I found via my friend The Google:

  • A nutrient-rich food considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being.
  • An unscientific marketing term used in various contexts. For example, it is sometimes used to describe food with high nutrient or phytochemical content that may confer health benefits, with few properties considered to be negative, such as being high in saturated fats or artificial ingredients, food additives or contaminants.
  • Foods especially rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytonutrients and zoonutrients

Zoonutrients?  What in the world is that?  Off to The Google again and here is what I found: special health promoting compounds found in meat, fish, egg and dairy products, especially whey and colostrum.  So they mean animal products?  Why not just say that instead of confusing people even more. Anyway, for me the one superfood that I love quite a bit is Quinoa.  Why is it my superfood?  Here is why: Of all the whole grains (its a seed actually), quinoa has the highest protein content, so it's perfect for vegetarians and vegans. Quinoa provides all 9 essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. Quinoa is a gluten-free and cholesterol-free whole grain, is kosher for Passover, and is almost always organic. Nutritionally it is ideal.  Take a look at these numbers.  For 1 serving (which is 1/4 cup) it contains 57 calories, 10g Carbs, 1g Fat, 2g Protein.  Since a gram of protein is equivalent to 4 calories you are looking at 1/7th of your calories from protein which is about 15% and that is perfect for an endurance athlete.  The carbs represent about 40 calories or about 71% of your calories and the remainder is fat. For a moment lets throw out all these numbers and focus on taste.  From that perspective quinoa cannot be beat.  It is nutty and has terrific texture.  If cooked right you can have that al dente feel that pasta has.  If you cook it a tad too long and it gets mushy no worries, toss it into some coconut milk and make a porridge out of it.  And there in lies that last reason why this is a superfood for me:  versatility.  I have used quinoa in overnite 'oat's, as part of a veggie burger, in tacos, as part of a dough to make pizza crust. Here is a recipe and some pictures from my dinner last night that included quinoa.  In addition to that there is a link from The Huffington Post on ways to use quinoa in everyday recipes.  Enjoy.

Quinoa Vegan Tacos

[caption id="attachment_6332" align="aligncenter" width="225"]quinoa_superfood_vegan_vegetarian The More Colors The Better[/caption]

Ingredients: 30g Red Bell Pepper, 30g Green Bell Pepper, 30g Yellow Bell Pepper, 20g Spinach, 20g Kale, 50g Zucchini, 100g Eggplant, 100g Mushrooms, 25g Red Cabbage, 25g Green Cabbage, 30g Avocado, 3/4c Whole Wheat Flour, 5 Tbsp Water, 1/4c Quinoa, 3/4c Water

Servings: 1

Nutritional Information: 748 calories, 116g Carbs, 26g Fat, 24g Protein (60% Carbs, 28% Fat, 13% Protein)

Directions:

  1. In boiling water add the kale and spinach and allow to boil for about 1 minute.
  2. Remove from boiling water and place in an ice bath or quickly drain and spray ice cold water on it to stop the cooking process
  3. In a separate pot add 1/4c quinoa and allow to toast for 1-2 minutes.  Add the 3/4 c of water and bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.  Quinoa is done when all the water is soaked up.
  4. In a food processor add flour and turn on then drizzle in the 5 Tbsp of water and allow the food processor to develop the dough.  It will whirl around until a ball is formed.  Remove from food processor and place on table with a dusting of flour.
  5. Cut the dough into 3 even sections and then roll out on lightly floured table.  While rolling out dough heat up griddle or pan on medium-high heat.
  6. Toss the rolled out dough onto the heat and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes per side.  You will see some char marks like at the restaurant and you will know they are done.
  7. Set aside tortillas and begin to chop your vegetables (remember avocado is a fruit so that doesn't go in here) and then toss onto the hot pan/griddle.
  8. Cook the veggies until they are at your desired consistency and by now the quinoa should be done cooking.
  9. Squeeze all the water out of your spinach/kale mixture and then chop.
  10. Assemble your tacos by placing the spinach/kale mixture, then vegetables, avocado, and finally quinoa.  Add hot sauce fold up the tortilla and enjoy.

Click HERE for an article from the Huffington Post on how to get quinoa into other recipes.

WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE WAY TO EAT QUINOA?

DO YOU EAT QUINOA OR HAVE YOU EVER TRIED QUINOA?

Published in Lunch Recipes
Thursday, 09 August 2012 18:34

Awesome Eats.....Take Two

Awesome eats debuted one week ago and in that time I have gone on a streak.  I am streaking on waffles.  I have made or consumed waffles everyday since Sunday.  That is correct.  I have had waffles as a meal for 5 straight days.  I have scarfed them down in the morning, at lunch and for dinner.  I am in the process of planning to make some savory waffles tomorrow for dinner.  Thanks to some people on Twitter (@distchocolic and @fatfluential) I will be dining on spinach and sun-dried tomato waffles tomorrow.  I am going to boil the spinach and then chop it up with the sun-dried tomatoes and add to my batter. I am going to continue this streak as long as I keep getting inspired so send your thoughts in.  For example. today while eating my honey and cinnamon sauteed peaches and nectarine waffles I saw Chef Michael Chiarello on Cooking Channel whipping up white bean waffles and topping them with a baked egg and asparagus.  Ummm.....yes please!  I don't have white beans but I do have chickpeas.  I don't have asparagus but I do have broccoli and mushrooms.  There you go a baked egg on top of chickpea waffles with roasted broccoli and mushrooms over the top. Without further ado here are the pics of the waffles from the streak along with a photo montage of my awesome eats from this past week.  As always, if you would like a recipe please contact me and I'll get it to you right away. [gallery link="file" orderby="rand"]   [flagallery gid=23 name=Gallery]   Thank you for reading and please send in your ideas.

Published in Athlete's Plate
Thursday, 16 August 2012 14:09

Chilaquiles El Diablo Recipe

Chilaquiles are typically made with a salsa verde and eggs.  I decided to change it up a bit last night and make it with a spicy salsa as well as with tofu.  Using tofu instead of eggs makes this a truly vegan meal and it is perfect for breakfast, lunch, dinner, brunch or brinner (yes that is a meal.....having breakfast for dinner that is.) I find that Mexican cuisine lends itself perfectly to a vegetarian / vegan diet and so I find myself making lots of Mexican style dishes for dinner.  The other cuisine that I find that is perfect for a vegetarian / vegan diet is Italian.  When you think about these two styles of cooking you notice that tacos are great as veggie options or even just black beans.  Quesadillas, burritos, empanadas are all terrific when made purely vegetarian.  For Italian dishes eggplant parmigiana comes to mind.  A pasta dish with broccolini and asparagus and mushrooms is perfect.  If you are feeling like a chef you can make a veggie risotto or use polenta cakes as the base for vegetables on top. Anyway, back to my dinner from last night:  Chilaquiles El Diablo.  I fell in love with chilaquiles when I was in Cozumel with Karen and found it on the menu.  The idea of combining tortillas, salsa verde, vegetables and eggs (at the time chorizo too) just sounded absolutely phenomenal.  In the past I have made them with my own salsa verde but I just finished reading tweets between Dickers and JeffBot about srirahca that made me want something spicy and so I came up with this recipe for the sauce.

Chilaquiles El Diablo

Ingredients: 1/2c whole wheat flour, 2o0g Tomatillos, 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, 1/2 medium avocado, 1/2c water, 1/4 block extra firm tofu, 60g zucchini, 100g Peppers (any colors), 50g White Onion (chopped), 80g Banana Pepper (chopped), dash of: cumin, coriander, oregano Nutritional Information: 528 calories, 80g Carbs, 15g Fat, 24g Protein (60% Carbs, 24% Fat, 16% Protein) Directions:

  1. In a blender combine tomatillos, chipotle peppers, avocado and water.  Blend until well combined.
  2. Pour el diablo sauce into a pan on low heat and let it start the reduction process.
  3. In a food processor combine flour with 4 tbsp of water and allow a dough to form.
  4. While dough is forming chop your vegetables and add them to your el diablo sauce.
  5. After dough has come together cut into 3 sections and roll out tortillas.
  6. Cook tortillas in a hot pan until some char forms.
  7. While tortillas are cooking crumble the tofu into the el diablo sauce and add cumin, coriander and oregano.
  8. Once tortillas are ready cut into triangles and add to your sauce.  Toss to coat the tortillas and allow the sauce to heat up over the tortillas.
  9. Spoon the chilaquiles el diablo onto a plate and top with avocado chunks and cilantro.

Enjoy!  In case you need further inspiration to make Mexican food, check out this link from The Huffington Post for various tacos.

Published in Lunch Recipes
Friday, 03 August 2012 16:30

Recovery, Recovery, Recovery

[caption id="attachment_6299" align="alignright" width="225"]recovery_snacks_meals_athletes_carbohydrates_protein Source: w8fit[/caption] Recovery, just like location in real estate, in my mind is the most important aspect to endurance training.  I have stressed this since I started in this world and maybe it's because of my age and I'm not getting any younger.  Maybe it's because I just love to eat.  Regardless of reason my emphasis on recovery is what I attribute my ability to have gotten through 2+ years of long course training with no injuries, very few (maybe 5 total) skipped workouts over that time and the ability to have not gotten sick during this time either. I believe that recovery is not just making sure that you are eating properly after a workout, but also throughout the day.  I also believe that making sure that your workouts are spaced out far enough to allow your body to recover provides a tremendous benefit as well.  If you are stacking workouts on top of workouts on top of your day job then you are creating a recipe for disaster.  The disaster may not hit this month or in this training cycle but eventually it will get to you.  You may burn out quicker because of the stress that you are putting your mind and body through, but either way your recovery has to be emphasized. How do I recover?  I recover with a 3:1 Carb:Protein shake within 30-45 minutes of my workout that lasts longer than 1.5 hours or is of high intensity (think 800m repeats or hill repeats).  2 hours after that workout I will have another meal that is carb focused.  If I don't have the opportunity to cook that meal, which is usually pancakes or waffles and sometimes a nut butter and jelly sandwich then I will make sure that I have another shake at that time.  Doing this allows me to restore my glycogen levels from the carbs and repair the muscle tears that I created during that workout with the protein.  I avoid fats as much as I possibly can in this window because I have not read anything that says that healthy fats will aid in my recovery.  That could be wrong and if it is please tell me. In regards to the timing of my workouts I do this by getting up before the sun and starting my workouts between 430am and 530am each time.  There are circumstances in which I will have to push my start time back such as bike only days so I start when the sun is starting to come up (I don't trust drivers) or when Karen is running and I start my long bike days later in the morning.  This isn't ideal as it gets very hot here in Dallas as the day moves on, but at the same time it preps me for Ironman race days since I will be on the bike in the middle of the afternoon and I can gauge my calorie/hydration/nutrition intake. By doing my workouts at the same time of the day I provide my body with what I believe to be optimal rest of nearly 24 hours.  Allowing the carbs and protein to work their magic over this time and given me the ability to get stronger and faster.  This also allows me to control my diet since I am not spending time having to worry about getting recovery meals into my body later in the day when there might be a craving for something else.  I know not everybody has the ability to do this during the week but if you can make it work my suggestion is to do that.  It is not easy getting up when you first start but after a couple of weeks it becomes second nature and you no longer have to worry about it. Check out this video from Sage Roundtree about recovery:
 
I also posted my recipe to Recovery Waffles here as well as have a few recipes for recovery shakes that use the Herbalife24 Rebuild Strength and Rebuild Endurance.  If you are interested in recipes for any of the shakes I make let me know through the Contact Me form and I will get them over to you.

How Do You Recover?

Published in Train
Friday, 13 July 2012 14:30

That's A Wrap

That's A Wrap......get it?  See what I did there?  I made a wrap and used the old movie production statement to make a STATEMENT..... OK, so I had no intention of posting this recipe today but after I put a picture of this up on Facebook yesterday  friend of mine asked for the recipe to put into the national newsletter that he sends out.  Not wanting to miss the opportunity to really promote this wrap I decided that I would put the recipe up today as well.

THAT'S A WRAP

Ingredients: 1/2c Whole Wheat Flour, 5 Tbsp Water1/2c of whole wheat flour, 5 Tbsp water, 1/4c chickpeas, 1/2c red cabbage, 1/2 fire roasted diced tomatoes (I used sprout's)' 100g green bell pepper, 100g white onion, 100g Brussels sprouts, garlic to your liking, 75g avocado Nutritional Information: 562calories, 93g Carbs, 13g Fat, 21g Protein. Directions:

  1. In food processor add flour and turn on. Start dribbling the water in until the dough starts to come together. It will create a ball in the food processor.
  2. Remove dough and roll out fairly thin.
  3. Place rolled out dough on Pre-heated skillet. Allow to cook until no longer raw but not hard. About 3 minutes.
  4. Julienne the onion and bell pepper. In Pre-heated pan add in all the vegetables, chickpeas and cook for about 5-10mnutes until tender but not soft.
  5. Toward end of cooking process add in garlic.
  6. As vegetables ar softening place your wrap on a large plat and then spoon vegetable mixture into center of wrap.
  7. Lift one end over the vegetables and pull toward you. Fold insides and the roll away from you.
  8. On a hot panini pan place wrap and allow to form grill marks. About 3-5 minutes. (don't have a panini press?  Place a second pan on top of the wrap and add the weight of 2 cans of beans.
  9. As wrap is toasting place the split Brussels sprouts in a hot pan to brown.
  10. Once all is done place on plats. Sprinkle sriracha over the Brussels sprouts and add sliced avocado.

This was a terrific combination of sweet (peppers and onions) and spicy (sriracha) and was very filling without stuffing you. [gallery link="file" columns="4" orderby="rand"] Thank you for reading.

Published in Lunch Recipes
Thursday, 12 July 2012 15:32

It's Summer Time

[caption id="attachment_6181" align="alignright" width="190"]summer_electrolytes_sweat_training Source: Blog My Runs[/caption] It's summer here in the United States and in case you didn't know it just turn on your Facebook and/or Twitter feed and see all the people bitching and moaning that it is 98* and they were sweating while they were working out.  As a matter of fact take a screen shot of it because in about 5 months those same people will be bitching and moaning that it is cold out and they have to wear 4 tops and their boogers were frozen. Anyway, that is not the point of this post but thank you for letting me get that off my chest.  Today I wanted to write about the importance of electrolytes and how we need to be sure to stay hydrated all day and then especially during working out.  I was going to refer back to the post on March 22, 2011 that you can find [HERE] and  give you information about why electrolytes are important to our bodies during training, but you can just click that link. Instead I am going to discuss how today while I was climbing hills I tasted my sweat for the first time in what seems like forever.  I was cruising down a hill and a drop of sweat landed on my lip so I licked it and I tasted salt.  I thought that it was weird because ever since I wrote a post titled The Taste Of Sweat I hadn't actually been tasting my sweat.  This was an odd phenomenon for me.  I was so distracted by this that I kept licking my lip to make sure that it was actually sweat that I was tasting. I immediately thought that I was not taking in enough sodium and so I began to slug down the mixture of Herbalife24 Prolong and Prepare I had on my bike.  At first that didn't do anything but about 20 minutes later my sweat began to taste like nothing again. While I kept tasting that saltiness though I thought about that post but couldn't remember what it meant. As soon as I got home I dug around and found the post, which was from October, and here is what it showed:
    • Salty: You have been eating a great deal of carbs: breads, pasta and fried foods.
    • Sweet: Lots of sugar in the body which can come from fruits, chocolate, candy, or alcohol.
    • Sour: You’ve had a bit too much dairy and soy products: milk, cheese, or tofu.
    • Vinegar: Too much protein and animal products, which gets turned into ammonia.
    • Thick: When your sweat is thick there is a lot of gluten in the body which comes from breads and pastas.
    • Margaritas: Margaritas…enough said.
Now I have been a vegetable eating fool but have avoided breads, pasta and fried foods like the plague so this shocked me.  That was until I looked back at my calorie tracking from yesterday and noticed I had just gone over the amount of carbohydrates I was 'allowed' to have in my diet.  It is interesting how all of this stuff really does tie back to each other. So while you are out there training in the heat be sure to stay hydrated and get your electrolytes in balance.  Also, don't forget that the key to being able to workout the next day is proper recovery from that day's workout.  A 3:1 or 4:1 Carb:Protein drink within 30-45 minutes is key and be sure to follow that up with another carb based meal within 2 hours.  I have been following this formula for a year and am always able to get up the next day and push my body just a bit harder than the day before. Now back to your Facebook and Twitter rants about how hot it is.
Published in Train
Thursday, 19 July 2012 15:46

The Sh*t I Do Eat

Yesterday I posted More Sh*t To Avoid which was a follow-up to Sh*t I'm Never Eating Again and one of the comments from Jeff Irvin over at Dangle The Carrot was to do a post on sh*t we can actually eat and that it would be a short post. With that in mind I am posting my dinners from the past week.  This is the foods that I do eat and an interesting thing occurred to me this week while I was following this diet.  I gained weight, and yes a part of that can be attributed to the Ultra-Sherpa'ing I did for Karen during her El Scorcho 50K.  I was eating to stay awake but in looking at my food journal I notice that I was incorporating a lot of whole grains in my meals.  Normally I may have a serving of whole grains per day, but that wasn't the case in the past week.  There were days where I had 3 servings (breakfast: slice of Alvarado St Rye Bread with sliced bananas.  Lunch: Sandwich on Alvarado St Rye bread.  Dinner: Tempeh Adobada with homemade tortillas made with whole wheat flour. Once I noticed this I adjusted my intake and dropped nearly 3 lbs in two days.  Amazing what a small change in your diet can result in. So the results from the announcement of D-Day: Determination Day are as follows:

  • Weight Loss: 4 lbs
  • Body Fat: Down 3%
  • Muscle Mass: Up 2 lbs

Things are taking shape for a good presentation at Rev3 OOB on August 26th. 

Published in Athlete's Plate
Tuesday, 03 July 2012 13:55

Forming Habits

[caption id="attachment_6145" align="alignright" width="360"]habits_triathletes_diet_exerciase Source: Training For Warriors[/caption] Forming habits takes approximately 3 weeks.  By habits I am not saying good or bad, just habits.  You can create a bad habit in as much time as it takes to create a good habit and the same can be said for breaking that habit.  A bad habit does not have to be around forever.  You need to make up your mind that it is a bad habit and stop doing it, which is not easy, but realize that within less than a month that habit will be broken. I am bringing this up because I was having a conversation with a friend of mine, who is pregnant, and we were discussing eating habits.  I mentioned that it is important for her to maintain her healthy eating habits and exercise routine (as long as the Doctor says its ok) because it will be that much easier to get back into these habits as long as she maintains them.  Her friend is also pregnant and has sort of thrown this notion out the window.  She said to me that watching her weight was not important now that she is pregnant.  It made no sense to me.  I wasn't saying that she had to be America's Next Top Model but that she should want to stay healthy not only for herself but also for her baby. After this conversation, in which I walked away shaking my head because maybe I missed something I thought about the habits that I had that I have broken and the habits that I have started.
  • I no longer drink alcohol.  I found it very difficult to train with any success while being hungover and it was more important for me to have a great workout then to be drunk and hungover.  I will still go out with friends and hang out and have dinner but they have come to accept that I won't be drinking and it gives them a designated driver.
  • I no longer order cheese on my pizza.  This was a tough one but once I got started and thought about why I was not putting cheese on my pizza it got easier.
  • I now drink approximately a gallon of water a day.  This has helped me stay hydrated in these Texas summers but I am also much more in control of my diet because I don't have phases of starvation.  My hydration levels, according to the Tanita scale, have been between 60% and 64% since I started this habit.
  • I no longer drink coffee.  Egads!  This was tough to do.  I was a two cup a day drinker.  One in the morning that had caffeine and the 2nd just after lunch that was de-caff.  With all the water and drinking green herbal tea I no longer have that craving for coffee.  The last time I had coffee my stomach erupted violently and that pretty much sealed the deal on that.
Competitor.com recently ran an article with Healthy Habits of Fit Triathletes written by Pip Taylor that I found interesting and will share them with you here: They read hunger signals. To stay lean year-round, learn to eat when hungry and pass when full. This also means that you don’t feel pangs of guilt for chowing down on seconds because you know when you need it. Athletes who constantly restrain themselves suffer more guilt and are more likely to have blowouts. I have figured out that there are only two times when I am truly hungry.  1- My stomach growls and a slight headache comes with it. 2- When I start having ridiculous conversations that make absolutely no sense.  Time to eat. They sit down for meals. As a busy athlete juggling three sports, it’s easy to eat on the go all the time. Sit down to eat meals and switch off distractions to fully enjoy your food and be aware of exactly what (and how much) you’re putting in your body.  I have the benefit of working from home so I am almost always eating while sitting down.  I also enjoy cooking and I think this helps me to appreciate the food as I want to enjoy the fruits of my labor. They don’t overestimate calories burned. Many athletes overeat after a big workout because they think they can make up for a huge calorie expenditure. Try to only modestly increase intake to more accurately match training demands.  I consume the exact same shake after every workout that is 1.5 hours or less and the exact same shake after every workout that is 1.5 hours or more.  From there I eat a carb based meal within two hours and this has allowed me to maintain my weight within 1-2 pounds for the past 7 months. They are organized. Shop and stock your cupboards, fridge and emergency stash locations so you’ll have less impulse eating and reliance on fast food or sugary hits. Have a plan for meals and snacks throughout the day.  Fast food doesn't exist for me.  I don't necessarily plan my meals but I have a very good idea of what I am going to eat each and every day based on where I will be and what I have done in regards to training. They eat (healthy) fats. Fat is satiating and essential for optimal health, functioning and energy. This means you should eat fatty foods such as salmon, nuts, olive oil and coconut oil.  I don't eat fish and have restricted the amount of oil I use for cooking so my healthy fats are consumed in the form of nuts and avocados mostly.  I also take an Omega-3 supplement to offset the fact that I don't use oil or consume fish. They focus on themselves. What your body needs is not what your colleague, training partner or spouse needs. Don’t stack your plate next to theirs.  I do the majority of the cooking in the house so this is easy for me.  At one point though Karen could be seen trying to 'keep up' with my consumption habits and it played a part in her weight.  When she realized this and began eating for herself she quickly dropped the weight and has seen her performance improve. They sleep a lot. Calorie consumption increases when you are tired. Getting a full night’s sleep will keep you on track.  Sleeping is very important and I do not skip out.  Yes I get up before the roosters and get my workout in but when my body calls for sleep I will take a 30 minute nap.  I am also in bed by 9pm every night and allowing my body to rest and recover. They don’t skip meals to lose weight. Getting overly hungry will just raise cortisol (stress hormone) levels and make weight loss harder. Plus you are more likely to eventually break down and binge. Slow and steady is the rule for lasting weight loss.  Yeah, this is never going to happen.  If I am looking to lose weight I consume fewer calories but I don't skip meals.  Your body will hang out to whatever nutrients you provide it and convert it to fat when it doesn't know that another meal is on its way.  It is the bodies defense mechanism and can be avoided by not avoiding meals to lose weight. They get enough protein. Protein helps curb appetite and maintain muscle mass even when weight loss occurs.  We all knew that eventually the protein topic would come up.  Most Americans get too much protein so this isn't an issue, but I do focus on consuming beans, grains, legumes, tempeh, tofu to get all my required protein.  I also supplement my meals with protein shakes when I can feel the need for a snack and don't want to cook. This is not to say that if you follow these items here that you will be the next Chrissie Wellington but it certainly will put you on the right track to becoming a fitter endurance athlete.

What Habits Do You Have That Make You A Fit Endurance Athlete?

What Habits Have You Broken To Help Improve Your Performance?

Published in Train
Wednesday, 09 May 2012 13:30

Time To Pay The Piper

excuses_obesity_resultsIt's time to pay the piper.  That is a statement that has been going through my head for about a week and a half now.  I am telling myself that because on May 19th when the gun for Ironman Texas goes off I will be paying the piper.  I will have a day that shows that the work I put in was worth it or if I wasted my time in my training.  What I mean is did I do the workouts hard enough and push myself far enough to accomplish the goals (post out tomorrow with giveaway) I have laid out before myself.  Or will the workouts I did prove that I just skated by. I was reminded of this after getting home today from  the gym and I was on Facebook and saw friend Marni Sumbal post on her Facebook page the words: make excuses or make things happen.  I am not one to make excuses for anything.  I either did or I didn't.  I either will or I won't.  There really is no middle ground with me and when I come across somebody who does make excuses I get frustrated.  I have a hard time understanding people who say they will do something and then don't do it.  Why do they do that?  If you aren't going to do it just say you are not sure that it's for you. I have been asked numerous times to help out with nutrition as well as with training.  I love talking about these topics so I get excited when somebody asks for my help.  I spend the time to put ideas to paper for them and then a week later I ask how it is going and the flood of cow dung excuses comes flying out of their mouths.  It is amazing what people will come up with, yet they were the ones that asked me for help.  To me you had the motivation to ask me for help so where did that motivation go. I also equate this to the obesity problem in America.  There are so many excuses that if they had a monetary value this country would not have a budget deficit.  I'm sure you hear it all the time too.  I don't have time.  It's too expensive.  I work 12 hours per day.  I have to drive the kids to school.  I have to cook.  I have to clean.  I have to ____________ (fill in the blank) and it is getting old.  Enough of the excuses.  Enough of the bullsh*t.  It is time to get moving and start taking responsibility for yourself. Don't tell me the marketing of the Lucky Charms forced you to eat them.  If those same marketing people told you to jump off a bridge would you?  I mean be honest with yourself.  Look yourself in the mirror and ask that person if they are doing everything they can to get healthy.  Ask that person if they are doing everything they can to make sure that their children grow up healthy.  If you can honestly answer yes to both questions then you have taken control.  If not, then  start taking control today. I received a handful of emails this week and last weekend regarding a report that 42% of Americans will be obese by 2030.  One of the first reactions I read was that BMI is not the best way to gauge obesity.  You know how I read that?  I read it as another excuse.  Maybe it is not the best way but it is one of the only ways we have to gauge obesity outside of the eyeball test.  Instead of focusing on some BMI scales focus on whether or not you are doing everything you can to be healthy.  I could hear all the excuses starting up after I read the post and I got fired up.  To me there is a time and a place to argue the merits of BMI and whatever other test you want to administer to gauge obesity, but instead of wasting time and money on that let's get to the crux of the matter and that is that America has a problem. I am working with Shape Up America to raise funds to educate people on what a proper healthy diet consists of (you can donate by clicking the button on the right hand side of the page.)  I have also been contacted by two other people who want to align themselves with Shape Up America.  This makes me smile because people are taking control and responsibility and want to help others out.  They are not making excuses but instead are doing the opposite.  They are making things happen.

WHAT ARE YOU DOING TODAY TO MAKE THINGS HAPPEN?

If we start by pushing this pebble over the cliff then by the time it hits the valley floor it will be a boulder.  Let's build momentum and cut back on the excuses.  Don't start on Monday......start right now.  Take control of your life and stop making excuses.

 
Published in Race
Friday, 20 April 2012 13:04

Laugh Or Throw Up?

Laughing and throwing up both require your core so this could be a good exercise for those of you, like me, that skipped your core workout yesterday (don't worry I'm going to the gym this afternoon to get it in.)  As you know I love going to the site Food Republic.  Food Republic is a site for men who want to eat and drink well, and to live smart (their words not mine.....I'm not that smart) and I think I fit that mold.  There are always great recipes, ideas about food and drink and every now and then the article that just makes you want to laugh OR throw up. Yesterday I was going through the site for the 5th or 100th time of the day and kept skipping this post until I finally decided to stop and read it and I could not stop laughing until I thought of the implications as well as future uses.  What am I talking about?  Read the article [HERE] or continue reading.  The concept of the article is lickable wallpaper.  You read that right.  Wallpaper that you lick to get a taste of, in this case, cake.  A company has put this wallpaper up in an elevator in London and is hoping to expand all over, including those of us on this side of the pond. After I read it my first thought was laughter.  I remember sitting in the elevator uncomfortably as we went from the ground floor to the 100th floor packed in like sardines in suits and ties.  Imagining somebody just turning and licking the wallpaper and then exclaiming 'I should never skip breakfast but damn that cake is so good.'  I would burst out in tears.  Or somebody licking the elevator wall when their boss walked onto the elevator.  How hilarious would that be? Then my mind quickly raced to the hygiene of it all.  The article makes the claim that there is a person who removes the circle tab after it has been licked.  That is all well and good, but what if they miss that one lick and you lick the same spot.  Or if they accidentally remove the wrong tab?  They are human after all, and humans make mistakes.  Maybe they can event the disappearing tab, that when it gets wet it dissolves.  I don't know but there has to be a better way than hoping the elevator man is paying attention. Not one to leave well enough alone I wanted to expand this business.  Why limit it to elevators?  Why not airplanes?  Why not hotel rooms?  Think about the idea that when you book your hotel room they ask you what you would want in your room in terms of food and you got to choose peanut butter and jelly?  You telling me you wouldn't be licking that wall when you first checked-in and the trip was stressful?  Better yet, why not add liquids as a choice?  A nice glass of  shiraz (although I don't drink I think this is a good idea) that has all the taste, non of the sugar (we are triathletes watching our racing weight) and no side effects like a hangover?  The entire room doesn't have to be covered but just a big enough area that is easily accessible by not only the guest but by hotel staff to remove the old paper and add in the new one.  They could even charge extra for additional sheets of 'food.' On the airplane, I bet more people would order this because it has to certainly taste better than the junk they serve on the planes these days.  And on those trips where the bag of pretzels that contains two pretzels can be replaced with a vegetable taco or for you carnivores a steak.  Imagine that for a moment......and how easy is clean up?  Its a sheet of paper so the effects on the environment are nothing.  The possibilities are endless if you ask me.

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THIS IDEA OF TASTY WALLPAPER?

WHERE WOULD YOU PUT SAID TASTY PAPER?

WHAT FLAVORS WOULD YOU COME UP WITH?

[flagallery gid=15 name="Elevator Tasting"]

Published in Uncategorized
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