Hi guys, so I’m on my way back to Toronto after a crazy week of bball and fun. I am so proud of the team: we went 6-0 in the tournament – winning the gold medal game yesterday! Such an incredible feeling, I can’t even describe it. You can check out a pic of the team here.

I’m exhausted and totally need the weekend to recharge. I’m so glad that I brought lots of food with me on this trip because the options weren’t great and given our schedule it was hard to get away to eat. I often found it hard to eat because I was so nervous before games (like literally not trying to throw up) or after games I was mostly focussing on making sure my team ate, drank water, etc. I really felt the effects of the lack of sleep, lots of stress and proper nutrition – lots of headaches this week and overall exhausting. Anyways, here’s what I prepared/ate.

Before I left to Detroit, I picked up my groceries from The Healthy Butcher.

Detroit Groceries

Then I came home and spent about an hour and a half boiling, grilling, washing, chopping and bagging.

Here’s what I did:

  • Hard boiled 7 eggs [directions]
  • Grilled 4 chicken breasts [recipe]
  • Grilled 4 beef burgers
  • Washed 4 green apples
  • Washed and cut 1 bag of celery
  • Washed, peeled and cut 1 bag of carrots
  • Washed and cut 6 bell peppers
  • Washed and cut 2 cucumbers

I waited for the eggs to cool before putting them in a tupperware and also waited for the meat to cool before wrapping them in plastic wrap. Then I made 5 baggies of celery and carrots and 5 baggies of cucumber and peppers.

Detroit Food Prep

I wanted to have my post-workout snack, breakfasts, lunches and other emergency snacks taken care of. So this is what I planned:

  • Post-workout snack: hard boiled egg + banana
  • Breakfast: chicken breast + celery and carrots
  • Lunch: beef burger + cucumber and peppers
  • Emergency snacks: apples, eggs, bars, nut butter packs

I packed everything in this cooler bag and threw in a few ice packs to keep the meat, chicken and eggs cold on the drive.

Cooler bag

On the bus I brought an almost empty salsa jar filled with ground beef and zucchini (made the night before).

Beef and zucc

I also chowed down on a chicken breast and some carrots and cucumber.

Chicken and veggies

When we got to the hotel, I put all of my food in the fridge.

Most mornings I woke up and had a piece of fruit (apple or banana) and a hard boiled egg.

Egg and apple

Then I brought the rest of my food for the day in my coaching bag. For breakfast (usually when we got to the gym and were watching other games) I had a beef burger and peppers and cucumber. Sometimes I could only eat half.

Burger and veggies

Then we would play and I would calm down and try to stomach a chicken breast, carrots and celery.

Chicken and veggies2

The afternoons were kind of crazy and my priority was always making sure my team got food, but I would usually have a Larabar and another piece of fruit.

Larabar

Dinners were supplied by the tournament so I’d eat what was there. Honestly, the meat quality looked so questionable so I was sticking to veggies. I sometimes ate another Larabar and hard boiled egg – definitely not “enough” but it’s what I had to work with. We did go out to a great steakhouse one night – I got the cornish hen, sweet potato and green beans. Too awkward to take a picture so I didn’t

Oh… and then there was some vodka.

vodka

You know I’m not a huge drinker at allllll but I have to say: after a long and stressful day, sitting down to a drink (or two) with the other coaches was really enjoyable. Vodka and veggies people :)

So that’s how I prepared and what I have been eating (and drinking) this week. Some of the other coaches totally made fun of me but whatever. It makes it all worth it when I see the girls on the team caring about how they fuel their bodies and telling me that: “instead of a bagel before the game I had eggs just like you recommended!” So proud of my girls for so many reasons – this was such a wonderful experience and I have really fallen in love with coaching.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Questions of the day…

How do you travel healthy?

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Hi guys! The past few days have been crazy. Amazing, but crazy. We are 4-0 and play in the semis this morning – cross your fingers!

I totally forgot to photograph a whole day of food recently so today is a selection of some recent faves. I also want to share what I packed for Detroit/have been eating while I’ve been here (it’s honestly not that exciting but whatevs) so I hope to have that up on Friday. Until then, here’s what I’ve been eating lately (I’ve tried not to make this redundant to Instagram).

Post-workout smoothie (almond milk, banana, protein powder) [recipe] all dayyyy everyyyy day. Well, when I workout. Obvs. Thanks to my amazing sister, my smoothie making life has been drastically changed for the better: how did I not know that my blender comes with another blade that blends with the travel cups?! What does this mean? Less clean up. Boo yeah.

Post workout smoothie

Breakfasts have been kinda boring: mostly grilled chicken [recipe] with some sort of veggie or some of Mom’s veggie/pea soup. This was a yummy breakfast of chicken sausages, spinach and apple.

Chicken sausage apple spinach

And I have totally gotten back on the “zeggs” train. Zucchini + eggs = zeggs. Strange but good. I was obsessed with this breakfast back in the fall but was making it in the microwave with egg whites. Now I make it on the stove with the wholeeee egg (duh) and it tastes wayyyy better. I updated the recipe to include both versions here. Trust me: don’t knock it until you try it.

Zeggs Update

Lunches have been whatever bowl of food concoction I put together. Lately, I’ve been totally obsessed with this combo: ground beef, brussels sprouts, spinach, spaghetti squash and tomato sauce [recipe]

Beef brussels spag squah spinach tomato sauce

I took this lunch on-the-go: shredded chicken [recipe], cauliflower and zucchini “rice”, spaghetti squash and a few cherry tomatoes. I just made the chicken then sauteed it with the veggies in coconut oil. Typical bowl of food. Plus a Larabar.

Shredded chicken cauli rice spag squash

I am still obsessed with the grill and it makes for such a quick dinner: beef burger, sweet potato, zucchini and a nectarine. I keep my grilling game very simple – typically just olive oil, salt and pepper. I seriously don’t know what I will do when it’s too cold to grill.

Beef burger zucc sweet potato nectarine

I also made my chicken bites [recipe]. I had them for dinner with salsa, sweet potato fries [recipe] and zucchini (I broiled the zucc in the oven but it came out kinda soggy). I made the bites with flaxseed meal this time around – you can make them with almond four/meal too.

Chicken bites dinner

Another good dinner featured my easy baked salmon [recipe], cauliflower rice with shredded zucchini and a sweet potato.

Salmon cauli rice sweet potato

After dinner eats (aka dessert) has been a) a sweet potato (gosh I love sweet potatoes) b) some fruit or c) a few chocolate chip cookies [recipe] straight out of the freezer… they legit taste like cookie dough! And please excuse my chipped nails.

Chocolate chip cookies

And one night after dinner I had my first bowl of oatmeal since before my Whole 30, which would have been in like February! Anyways, I had a craving so satisfied it with some rolled oats, a banana and almond butter. It honestly did not taste as good as I thought it would but I felt fine digestion wise.

Oatmeal

Time to keep winning! Over and out.

 

Questions of the day…

Have you been OD-ing on zucchini too? What have you been chowing down on lately? 

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Hi guys! How was your weekend? Hope you are soaking up the last bit of summer (sad face).

I’m actually in Detroit as you are reading this (arrived yesterday) and will be here all week coaching my girlies at our tournament – wish us luck! The week is pretty jam packed – we have 5-6 games and a bunch of other activities (community service, evening programs). I am super nervous but trying to stay positive and confident. I mean, I’ve played enough games but coaching feels totally different.

Anyways, here’s a quick recap of last week’s workouts:

Monday

CrossFit x2 – 6:30am & 7:30am Foundations class

Warm-up was a 1,000m run (aka 1km)

Found a heavy 20 rep back squat max… 85 lbs for me.

WOD:

Starlord

My knees hate pistols so I did them holding onto a pole of the rig. I also really need to work on keeping the bar closer to my body (and hitting my quads) on my cleans. Got 3 rounds + 28 reps… two toes to bar short of 4 rounds… grrrr!

After the WOD I ate a bit, caught my breath and then did the Foundations class with my friend who was trying CrossFit for the first time. Started off with a 800m run, 2 minute max effort skip, leg and shoulder mobility. Then we did an 8 minute EMOM of strict press with the bar and goblet squats with a dumb-bell.

The Foundations WOD was a modification of Cindy:

Foundations

I subbed chin-ups for the pull-ups. 5 rounds + 5 chin-ups.

 

Tuesday

Speed + park workout

I almost got rained out but thankfully mother nature cooperated. Here’s what I did:

Warm-up: 1 mile run

Then… 5 rounds of: 500m sprint, 5 pull-ups, 10 air-squats, 5 pull-ups (pull-ups done with band)

Cool-down: 1 mile run + 20 minutes on bike

I didn’t bring my watch. Speed work is turning into my favorite way to run/train!

 

Wednesday

CrossFit.

We warmed up (deep squat hold + burpees) and then did a ton of front rack lunges (I used 65lbs) and hollow rocks.

WOD:

Leo

Worst. The class was pretty full so there weren’t enough rowers so I had to flip the row and the run. I ran the mile (in like 6 minutes), nearly cried through the pull-ups (using the band obvs), did the snatch at 45lbs (that was too light), then rowed 1,000m (in 5:06). Holy hell my legs were on fire. Finished the whole WOD in 20:06.

I stayed afterwards to work on my pull-ups and the kip. I want to get pull-ups so badly.

 

Thursday

Rest. My legs were dead.

 

Friday

8 miles + cool-down on bike

8 miles

Garmin Forerunner15

I switched my schedule around because Saturday called for thunderstorms so I ran Friday morning. This run made me really happy… it just felt good!

 

Saturday

4 miles + cool-down on bike

4 miles

Garmin Forerunner 10

Well, it didn’t rain! So I ran a few shake-out miles.

As much as I love to hate running with my Garmin watch(es), they are truly a great product. More often than not, I need to know my distance and I couldn’t do that without a running watch. I’ve tried apps on my phone and I just don’t find them to be as accurate. As long as I don’t obsess over my time/speed, me + my Garmin(s) have a happy relationship.

I bought the Garmin Forerunner 10 (the pink watch) when training for my first half marathon and other than it sometimes taking forever to find my location, I have loved using it. But lately I have been running with the Garmin Forerunner 15 (the teal watch) and I absolutely love it! The GPS is super quick, it tracks steps, energy and looks adorable. I even use the stopwatch function when coaching. It’s more of an overall fitness watch than “just” for running. I highly recommend it and the colors are super cute!

 

Sunday

Rest… aka sat on a bus with 45 kids on the five hour drive to Detroit.

 

Phew okay gotta run, food party coming your way on Wednesday!

 

Disclaimer: Garmin sent me the Forerunner 15 free of charge, however (as always), all opinions are my own. 

 

Questions of the day… 

What’s up in your fitness world? Anything new and exciting?!  

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If you’re new around here (hello, so glad to have ya!) you may have missed reading about my story (and struggle) I’ve had with my skin. In case you want to catch up on all the blackheads, whiteheads, Accutane, low-self-esteem… you can read that post here. But long story short: I tried it all and still struggled with acne. It wasn’t until ditching birth control and all my lotions and potions to instead focusing on nourishing my body with nutrient-dense, real food as well as using more gentle, natural remedies that I’ve actually found sustained success and confidence with my skin and in my skin. Phew, that’s a mouthful.

My skin is still not “perfect” in my eyes, but on more days than not, I am very happy (ahem, consistency not perfection). Sometimes I get some pimples around my mouth or on my jaw line or even on my chest… but I can usually attribute this to things that I know don’t agree with my body: alcohol, ice-cream, beans, stress, sugar and even nuts/seeds. I can also attribute them to my wandering, “picking” hands. Ew, gross. As if I talk about this! I used to be sooo ashamed of my skin. It truly effected me and I bet you’d probably tell me it wasn’t even ever “that bad. Maybe not, but learning to embrace it because it is a part of what makes me, me has been important. I’m hoping blogging about it might help you.

I have previously mentioned about my attempts with “natural” beauty products – I use natural loosely because the word is not a regulated term so really anyone can slap a natural label on their product and call it a day. But I have gotten a few emails and questions about what products I use and my “skincare routine” so I thought this post is fitting.

This is what I am doing as of right now. As usual, I am always experimenting to see what works best for me – I encourage you to do the same… and don’t give up… it takes time to figure things out and I am not “done” figuring it out either.

Amy skin Aug 2014

Last week… post run… no filter/edits… no face makeup (leftover eyeliner)

Face: I love Skin Essence products – they are full of wonderful oils. Putting oil on my face used to scare me but it works wonders! I just splash my face with warm water when I wake up then wash my face twice a day (in the shower in the morning, before bed in the evening) with warm water and this facewash. After washing (I do not dry my face), I mix a bit of apple cider vinegar (this one) with water and use a cotton pad to dab it on my face and chest. Then I use a few drops of this oil to moisturize.

Face products

Body: I wash my body with a bar of Dr. Bronner’s soap. I use coconut oil to moisturize my body but I rarely remember to moisturize. I use a deodorant by Jason - ingredients seem legit and I don’t smell.

Hair: The “no-poo” method did not go well for me. (No-poo = baking soda and apple cider vinegar). I tried. For my hair, I also use Jason products: just a basic shampoo and conditioner. As I said, Jason products seem pretty legit and they do the trick: clean, nice-smelling hair.

Other: I still use “conventional” drugstore makeup (eyeliner, mascara) and regular nail polish. Oops. I take off my eye makeup with grapeseed oil. I rarely use face makeup (only when I’m “going out”). When I do, I use a minimal amount of MAC foundation/concealer if I need to cover something up and NARS bronzer if I look pale.

Vitamins/Minerals: Refer to this post - it outlines what supplements I am currently taking.

Hair and body products

I hope this is helpful – let me know if you have any other questions and I will do my best to answer them!

 

Questions of the day…

What are some of your favorite skin/body/beauty products? 

 

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Jewish Grandma’s are notorious for a few things: their food, their loud voices and their intent to set-up their granddaughter with “a nice Jewish boy.” Let’s skip the failed dating set-ups, the loudness of my Grandma and just focus on her food. Chopped liver was always on the table at both of my Grandma’s houses and devoured it. Did I know how good it was for me? Nope, but it was delicious (yes, delicious) so I ate it.

But now I know that properly sourced liver (from properly raised animals) is a serious super-food. Liver is one of the most nutrient-dense foods out there: it is an abundant source of vitamin A, arachidonic acid, DHA, and the B vitamins. It can also help boost energy, libido, muscle growth and brain power. Don’t believe me? Check out this article on the 10 Health Benefits of Chicken Liver.

Chopped Liver1

Chicken liver is milder tasting than other animal livers (and still packs the nutritional punch) so that’s what I eat. Yes touching it raw totally grosses me out, but sometimes we gotta put on our big girl panties and eat things that are good for us. Liver is one of those things. And the added bonus? Made right, it’s actually delicious.
It’s hard to push ourselves outside of what I like to call our “food comfort zone.” But often it is necessary. Why was I so adverse to meat for so long? Well because I thought it was bad for me, I didn’t think I could buy properly raised meat and I genuinely love animals. I was convincing myself that I didn’t like it so I stopped eating it. But my body was pushing back. It was hard at first (and raw meat still grosses me out) but I eat the way I do for my health and believe that eating properly raised meat is part of the circle of life. A few months ago, I forced myself to try liver again. It was uncomfortable but now I eat it by the spoonful. Our bodies are amazing, weird, interesting, fascinating things. Now if only I could fall in love with sardines…

Chopped Liver

Ingredients (Makes approx. 3 cups)

  • 1 lb. organic chicken liver
  • 3 hard boiled eggs [directions]
  • 2 small onions
  • 1/2 tsp. salt, more to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper, more to taste
  • fat of choice for frying the onions

Instructions

1. Pre-heat oven to broil, line a baking sheet with tin foil and set aside.

2. Rinse the liver under cold water and pat it with a paper towel to dry.

3. Lay the liver on the baking sheet and broil in the oven for 10 minutes – flipping halfway through (5 minutes per side).

4. While the liver is broiling, chop the onions into eighths (they do not need to be super small because you will be pulsing them in the food processor eventually) and fry them in about a tsp. of oil (I use coconut) in a pan on the stove until browned. Set aside.

5. Next, use a fork or potato masher to mash the hard boiled eggs in a medium bowl and set aside as well.

6. Once the liver has broiled, allow to cool for 10 minutes.

7. Once cool, add the liver to a food processor and pulse for about 8-10 seconds (or until desired consistency).

8. Remove the liver and add it to the hard boiled egg mash and mix to combine.

9. Add the onions to the food processor and process until finely chopped.

10. Add the onions to the egg and liver mixture and mix to combine.

11. Season with salt and pepper (adding more to taste).

12. Serve with veggies or by the spoonful – store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.

Questions of the day… 

Have you pushed yourself to incorporate different foods into your diet? Does your Grandma set you up on dates as well? 

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