Tag Archives: health

dinner made easy (and healthy!)

In case you don’t know this about me already, I am a major foodie. I love good food, I love great restaurants, and I love desserts. I’ll be the first to admit though, I’m not the greatest cook in the world. Baking – I love. Cooking – not my strong suit. I’m trying to get better though & find more recipes that are healthy and easy!

I recently found this turkey burger recipe (from The Pioneer Woman) and thought it looked simple and delicious. I tried it last night and both my husband and I loved it! The goat cheese/pesto spread was amazing, and the entire meal took less than 30 mins to make. (The Pioneer Woman recipe has the turkey burger on a toasted everything bagel. My husband had his on a toasted bun, and I did mine just on a bed of spinach! She also put more butter in her’s than I used. So, the recipe below is my version of her original) Enjoy!

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Ingredients (This is for 8 servings – if you have a big family or just want lots of leftovers!)

  • 8 whole Everything Bagels (Again, I used a bun for my husband, just spinach for me!)
  • 4 Tablespoons Butter
  • 4 ounces, weight Goat Cheese (chevre)
  • 2 Tablespoons Pesto
  • 2 pounds Ground Turkey
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt (more To Taste)
  • Plenty Of Black Pepper
  • 8 dashes Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 whole Egg Yolk (optional)
  • 1 Tablespoon Canola Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 4 whole Roma Tomatoes, Sliced
  • 3 whole Avocados, Sliced
  • 16 whole Large Basil Leaves

Preparation Instructions

Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat and grill the cut side of the bagels until golden brown and slightly crisp. Set aside.

Stir together the goat cheese (or cream cheese) and the pesto until smooth. Add more pesto if you’d like!

Combine turkey, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and egg yolk (if using) in a large bowl. Stir or knead together with your hands, then form into patties.

Heat canola oil and 1 tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the patties on both sides until totally done, with no sign of pink in the middle, at least 4-5 minutes per side.

To serve, spread a good amount of the pesto spread on each bagel half. Place the burgers on the bottom half, then top with tomato slices and basil leaves. Lay avocado slices on the top half, using the spread to make them stay put. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper on the avocados, then place the top half on the bottom half, smush it together…and dig in!

Running Mojo

I have a theory that every runner has their “mojo”. Certain things they must (or must not do) before a run, in order to ensure a successful run. ie: “don’t eat this, must eat this, must sleep __hrs the night before, have to listen to ___ playlist “, etc.

I have a  few random “mojo” items like this. For instance, I have to be chewing gum when I run. I don’t know why, but otherwise I think my run will be a complete fail. I also always have to be using Apple headphones. Only Apple. I realize there are better headphones out there…but this is my mojo.

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So those might be random, but today I want to share 5 things with you that I think are essential to every workout routine, that have truly transformed my workouts!

  1. Shoes. As a runner, if you don’t have the right shoes, you are greatly increasing your chance for injury. Shin splints, bad knees, sore feet, etc. Having the right shoe is an absolute must. I personally swear by Newton’s – they are lightweight, amazing quality, and teach you to run more on the front of your foot (your “toe box) than the back. (The ones I linked too are 25% off with free shipping!). Newtons aren’t for everyone though – if you are a pronator or supinator you will need something with more support. For a more stability type shoe, I would recommend Asics or Brooks
  2. Protein. When it comes to eating before a workout, I know everyone is different. I must have half a banana and 1 T of almond butter before every run though. The potassium in the banana and protein in the peanut butter is just the right amount of fuel to keep me going. I also always have either eggs or a protein shake within 30 mins after my run!
  3. Cuteness. There might not be science behind this, but I personally think you are way more motivated to workout if you have workout clothes you feel cute in! My current favorite brands for running or working out: Athleta (get 20% off today with code “DRESS20″!), Zella, Nike
  4. Fitness watch / steps tracker. I’ll be honest – I was hesitant to jump on this bandwagon. I kept thinking “why does it matter how many steps I get in a day??” I have learned to LOVE my Fitbit though. It totally motivates me to workout so I can make sure I get all my steps in! If you don’t have one already, I highly recommend it.
  5. Advocare. If there was one thing I absolutely could not live without on those long run days, or the days when working out is the last thing I want to do..it would be my Spark drink by Advocare. In case you’re not familiar with Advocare, it’s a company that provides innovative nutritional, weight-management, sports performance and skincare products. They have everything from meal replacement shakes, to multi-vitamins, to sports performance products.

When I look at websites like this, I get overwhelmed because there are so many options (based on what your needs are). I personally just take Advocare to improve my workouts, so for that, I would recommend:

1) Spark – it’s a sugar-free drink (powder that you put in water) with more than 20 vitamins, minerals and nutrients that work synergistically to provide a healthy, balanced and effective source of energy that won’t overburden or over stimulate your body. It serves as an all-in-one solution that gives you a quick boost of energy that lasts for hours. I can tell a HUGE difference in my run when I drink spark beforehand, vs the runs where I don’t!

2) Meal Replacement shake – okay, these are actually delicious (my favorite flavor is of course chocolate!). I almost always run in the mornings before starting the day and typically don’t have time to make a big breakfast after. So, on those days, these meal replacement shakes are my life saver. This yummy drink has 24 grams of protein and only 210 calories!

3) Rehydrate – also a drink (powder that you put in water) that helps you stay hydrated during physical activity. Unlike other sports drinks, Rehydrate includes antioxidants, carbohydrates, electrolytes, and other nutrients that effectively promote optimal hydration and recovery. Rehydrate Drink has a 1:1 ratio of sodium and potassium, two of the most vital electrolytes that are lost when we sweat.

Okay, lots of info. Do you feel inspired to go sweat now?! If you have any questions about workout tips or Advocare products, you can always email me!

Shop some cute workout stuff here:

5 FRIDAY FAVES – FITNESS EDITION

For our 5 Friday Faves this week, we’ve picked our top 5 fitness items! Working out and running is such a huge part of both mine and Lo’s lives, so we wanted to share the items with ya’ll that make working out so much more enjoyable for us!

1. Favorite sports bra:

This all depends on your activity. If it’s for a highly active/intense workout, I love to have a lot of support, which is why the Under Armor Eclipse sports bra is my fave. If its for light activity (walking, yoga, etc.) you can’t go wrong with a good Target sports bra. So comfortable and easy to wear all the time (but, try and resist!). I have this in probably 4 different colors…

2. Favorite running shoe:

For everyday running, the Nike LunarEclipse takes the cake. What I love about Nike is that they manage to make an amazing product, but keep style in mind at the same time! I love this turquoise LunarEclipse.

3. Favorite workout companion:

Fitbit flex. I had been wanting a steps tracking device for a while and did my research on the different brands. I was won over by the amazing reviews for the fitbit flex and all of it’s capabilities. And, let’s be honest, it was the cutest one. It tracks my steps throughout the day, mileage from my runs, and my sleep at night. My husband bought it for me a few months ago and it has not left my wrist since!

4. Favorite running sock:

Crazy to think that such a small item makes such a massive difference in running; but it does! I love these tab back socks because they keep your feet from blistering, the sock doesn’t slip down into your shoe, and provides the support your foot needs.

5. Favorite pre-work out snack: banana and almond butter – every time! My favorite almond butter is from Trader Joe’s.

Shop our favorite fitness products here!:

mashed califlower.

As we move into November, here are the fruits/vegetables in season: green beans, grapes, pears, apples, cauliflower, potatoes, winter squash & broccoli. Try to include these foods in your daily diet as often as possible for nutrient rich meals and snacks.

 

Mashed potatoes are always a favorite dish, especially when it’s getting colder outside. For those of you trying to include more vegetables, looking for a lighter dish (decreasing body fat) or wanting to try something new, mashed cauliflower has become a hit with many.

 

Cauliflower is classified as a cruciferous vegetable. While many people think of “white” foods as being empty calories, cauliflower is high in Vitamin C providing many antioxidants to the body.

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Here’s a simple recipe to get you started. Change up the amounts of milk and/or yogurt to get a different consistency.

Makes 4 servings

Time: 40 minutes

 

1 head cauliflower

1 bulb garlic

2 tsp olive oil

½ cup almond milk

¼- ½ cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt

¼ cup Parmesan cheese

Salt and pepper, to taste

  1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Chop cauliflower into florets. Don’t spend too much time chopping – just enough to spread out the pieces (eventually you will blend it all up). Spread onto baking sheet and drizzle with 1 tsp olive oil. Toss to coat.
  3. Slice off the top of the garlic bulb and wrap in foil. Drizzle with 1 tsp olive oil. Place wrapped bulb on the baking sheet with the cauliflower.
  4. Roast cauliflower and garlic bulb for 25-30 minutes, stirring cauliflower halfway through. While cauliflower/garlic is roasting, you can add the remaining ingredients to the processor/blender to save time.
  5. Allow cauliflower to cool slightly. Remove garlic cloves from bulb (they should be soft and easy to remove from skin).

If you enjoyed this post, please visit me at www.thefueledathlete.com. I just re-launched my blog this week and would love for you to join me!

Christina Strudwick, MS, RD, CSSD, LD, is a Sports Dietitian with a passion for helping others reach their goals. She’s a native Texan but currently working with Special Forces soldiers in North Carolina.

bkr bottles.

hi, you’re on my wish list. This BKR bottle keeps popping up on some of my favorite fashion-inspo instagrams, such as the totally talented Anine Bing, and when she raves about a product other than her heavenly designs, I will always take a second glance. How adorable is this water bottle? It’s bubbly glass. It lacks chemicals. It’s minimal and pretty. #hydrationmadecute #thebestpresent Scenarios to make the purchase: give your mom a surprise gift to brighten her day, bring a bottle to cheer a girlfriend up during a breakup or a stressful week, or wrap this up for a Valentine’s Day gift. P.S. if you can’t resist, you could treat yourself with one too. xoxo

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Pumpkin Spice Protein Smoothie.

Fall weather is here! Along with the cooler weather comes the delicious fall produce. When trying to choose healthier options, it’s important to consider what is in season. By choosing and purchasing foods in season, you will not only save money… you will get fresh and nutrient dense food.

 

Foods lose flavor when they have to be shipped from another part of the world, just as they lose moisture when they are held. Fresh, locally harvested foods have their full, whole flavors intact, which they release to us when we eat them. By purchasing local produce (aka Farmers’ Market) instead of conventional (aka Grocery Store), you can get the benefits of flavor, nutrition and often chemical-free produce. Many farmers grow their produce as if it was organic but can’t afford to officially label it organic.

 

Buying conventional foods means you are eating something produced with varying levels of chemical fertilizers to promote plant growth. This could include insecticides to reduce pests and disease, chemical herbicides to manage weeds, and possibly antibiotics, growth hormones and/or medications to animals (when looking at eggs, meat, etc) in an effort to prevent disease and spur quicker growth. Plus, who knows where it was actually grown? Or how long it’s been sitting in a delivery truck?

 

Don’t get me wrong – consuming produce in any fashion is a great choice! Perhaps it’s time to think outside the box, though. Where is your food actually coming from? Many grocery stores have a section for locally grown produce or you can always head to your local farmers’ market.

You can download the app – Eat Local – for free on your phone. It gives you the local farmers’ market info, produce that’s in season and how to pick out/prepare that vegetable or fruit.

What’s in season right now, you ask? Pumpkin! And any winter squash for that matter… acorn, spaghetti, and butternut. The options are endless.

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Here’s a lower sugar, higher protein smoothie inspired by the famous pumpkin spice latte:

Pumpkin Spice Protein Smoothie

1 cup almond milk

½ can (~3/4 cup) pumpkin (winter squash – find in canned vegetable aisle or seasonal section)

1 banana

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

½ cup non-fat Greek yogurt (try vanilla)

Spices: nutmeg, cinnamon, ground cloves to taste (try ¼-½ tsp of each)

Optional: Add whey protein & almond butter to make it a substantial post-workout meal

 

Nutrition Facts

  • 300 calories, 4g fat, 53g carbohydrates, 15g protein
    • Use as a pre-workout meal or small breakfast
    • Pre-workout snacks should be low in fat to prevent GI issues during exercise

Optional

  • Instead of yogurt, add 1 scoop whey protein, 1 more banana & 1 tbsp almond butter: 500 calories, 13g fat, 74g carbohydrates, 29g protein
    • Use as a post-workout meal and/or breakfast substitute
    • The ratio of carbohydrates to protein is perfect for post-workout recovery

 

Enjoy your pumpkin spice without the added sugars or artificial flavors!

 

If you enjoyed this post, please visit me at www.thefueledathlete.com. I just re-launched my blog this week and would love for you to join me!

 

Christina Strudwick, MS, RD, CSSD, LD, is a Sports Dietitian with a passion for helping others reach their goals. She’s a native Texan but currently working with Special Forces soldiers in North Carolina.