Tough Mudder Buffalo – Team DeVAtion from the Mean Monster Truck

A victory for twentysomethings everywhere! Particularly twentysomethings who emerge from stagnant sedentary lifestyles on couches with Kraft Easy Mac and Gummy Fruit Snacks and soar with full force towards Paleo (it’s a life style not a diet) and physical activity! Not only have I survived the Tough Mudder but I. Kicked. Ass.
Without going into too much detail, I’ll let the pictures do the talking. I climbed, and swung, I got shocked, I ran (a lot), I slid (a lot) and I got really really really dirty. I mean, the dirtiest I think I’ve every been in my life. (And the Minimus sneakers not only prevailed but survived the mud and still keep me running to this day).

This is one small step for personal fitness, and one billion steps for wounded warrior project.

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Citrus Cilantro Fish Tacos

It’s about time to add more fish-based recipes, and keeping true to twentysomething fashion, we can start with more MEXICAN! The sweet potato skin mock-tortillas did it again: possibly better than traditional flour and corn tortillas. This was super easy to make despite post-WOD exhaustion too, if you’re ever looking for a last-minute-haven’t-meal-prepped paleo dinner.

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Citrus Cilantro Fish Tacos

4-6 whiting fillets
1 red bell pepper
1 sweet potato
6 sprigs fresh cilantro
1 tbsp chopped garlic
2 tbsp lemon/lime juice
2 oranges
2 tbsp frank’s red hot sauce

Grill fillets and red bell pepper on the good ol’ George Foreman (or a real grill if you’re fancy) until nice sharp char marks.

Finely chop cilantro and mix with lemon/lime juice, juice from one orange and hot sauce.

Chop second orange and red pepper and sauté with garlic in pan.

Add fish to pan when orange and garlic start to carmelize and pour sauce over top.

Cook for 2-3 minutes.

Bake sweet potato (poke with fork, microwave HIGH 4 minutes, flip, HIGH 4 minutes) halve, and scoop out flesh (leaving some flesh around the skin)

Scoop fish and citrus/pepper sauce into sweet potato skins.

Garnish with extra cilantro and lime.

Adios Zumba… Here comes Hurricane CrossFit

The end of April means free-month membership at the YMCA is over. I am truly heartbroken that I can’t continue going to Zumba. Even though it wasn’t “enough” of a work out for me personally, I started looking forward to getting lost in the Latin fitness songs with Syracuse’s inner-city finest. I plan on coercing my friends at the Y to bring me as a guest when I need that sexy-work out boost this summer. I JUST mastered the hardest moves too. And shredded up my old t-shirts into ridiculous skimpy zumba-friendly work out tanks.

One thing is for sure: I will not be wearing re-tied t-shirts OR provocatively shaking my booty at CrossFit WHICH… *drum roll* I have OFFICIALLY started. Foundations class ended yesterday. It started with about 20 people, and ended with 7. Since 95% of my life so far has been sedentary/non-athletic, I still am SUCH clutz and can not master any kind of coordinated movement… making the lifting overwhelmingly unsuccessful (as in, just moving the bar – without weight) So I went to the hardware store and bought a 1″ PVC pipe in hopes of mastering the moves at home. Everything else: rowing machine, air squats, box jumps, wall ball, pull ups… I love and can complete relatively successfully. Yeehaw. Twentysomething and Bring. It. On.

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I had a lovely discussion about the Paleo diet with a girl in my “graduating” class too. I must say, it’s nice to talk about the paleo diet with people who also eat paleo – or plan to. It was also nice to know that someone else had physically prepared to join before joining (P90X… kickboxing… one in the same) and stalked pintrest crossfit pins for hours.

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On a final optimistic note: a coworker and I ran to the mall during lunch break to pick up our packets for the Color Me RAD 5K tomorrow. Naturally (twentysomethingandfemale) we stopped in H&M for a summer-clothes quicky. I got a CrossFit graduation outfit (as seen above) and an itsy-bitsy-teeny-weeny not-really-yellow-or-polka-dotted bikini which – LOOKS FREAKING GREAT. Warning: success at weightloss can DEFINITELY lead to a retail problem. Its so much easier to avoid spending money when clothes don’t fit or look good. I still can’t wrap my mind around it when I go shopping these days (wait… I’m a SMALL!? OK… wait… this fits? this looks good? wtf I can’t buy ALL of this…) I feel the dopamine being associated with the act of purchasing clothes though and it’s dangerous…

So cheers to teeny bikinis before beach season, being a CrossFitter (and crying after every workout for the next month), and lifting PVC pipes in your dining room. Keep it moving and trying new things twentysomethings.

OH! PS now that I’ll actually need to recover and moderate more than just calories – I’ll be including grams of Fat (F) Protein (P) and Carbs (C) in my recipes.

Blue Cocoa 4 PM Protein Bars: (6 bars @ 150 cal/ea)

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I don’t know about you but 4pm is when my will is at its weakest. Running on a morning-people circadian rhythm makes afternoons rough. Once i start working out after work I’m good to go but I definitely need to start incorporating a protein power boost. Larabars have been rocking my world but its time to go home made. Blue cocoa protein bars are a lovely start.

1/3 cup seeds (pumpkin/pepitas, sunflower, sesame)
1/6 cup raw coconut shreds (unsweetened)
2 tbsp nut butter (I use Justin’s chocolate hazelnut)
1 tbsp coconut oil
2 tbsp almond flour
1 tbsp 100% cocoa powder
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 scoop Hemp protein powder
1 egg white
¼ cup dried blueberries

Preheat oven to 350F.

Toast seeds on a cookie sheet until golden brown (shaking the tray periodically).

Dump in blender/food processor and pulse until slightly larger than the consistency of bread crumbs.

Melt coconut oil and nut butter together in the microwave (aprox 30 seconds on high).

Stir in vanilla extract and a dash of salt if you’re the salt type.

Stir in seed mix, almond flour, cocoa powder, and protein powder until well blended.

Stir in egg white and blueberries last.

Press into a muffin tin or an 8×8 pan/baking dish.

Sprinkle extra blueberries or coconut on top if you’d like.

Bake for another 10-15 minutes until coconut starts browning.

Let cool and slice it up!

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Free Month at the YMCA and Running Outside

Sadly to say, I completed my 90 days of kickboxing. Now, less 26 lbs, $750 richer and able to kick any parking lot attackers ass, I move into round two of my Tough Mudder preparations: running outside.

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Today is a landmark for me – its the first time I’ve gone running on my own free will. I’ve been logging 8-9 miles on the elliptical at the gym for the past month but running on the ground outdoors was a strange novel (but truly liberating and slightly chilly) experience. I got a good 4.5 miles in 50 minutes non stop (I’ll take it!)

At the same time, quite serendipitously, I’ve been offered a free month membership at the downtown YMCA! I’ve said before – the path to loving fitness is made easier by trying new things when the opportunity presents itself and so I have a schloo of new classes to try out!

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April appears to be a month full of fun new fitness experiences!!

The first first (even before running outside) of the month was: ZUMBA! I know, I know, I’m way behind the curve on this one. Zumba’s on its way out the popularity door now that its on 70% of the infomercial slots (right next to insanity). My Zumba review in a nutshell: much more feminine than kickboxing. I felt sexy for the first time while working out and the looser I let myself be, the better I appeared to be at the Zumba dances. I loved how eclectic the Zumba-class was and the curvaceous Hispanic instructor was GREAT. I felt so welcome (and I do NOT have a good history with synchronized dancing).

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More new YMCA class reviews to come! And the next running-outside break through I have as well!

Kickboxing 90 Day Fitness Challenge

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Voila! The fruits of my labor, shared in the cursory age-old “before and after” photo. While shrinking is pretty darn cool, my increased physical capabilities are what make me feel most accomplished. I never could “before” but now can “after”:

Run for 9 miles non-stop at an average rate of 8 minute/mile.

Do full push-ups without kneeling or stopping during any given fitness class.

Kickbox-assail the sh*t out of an attacker in the grocery store parking lot.

Head-stand push-ups against the body-bags.

Hand-wrap and stretch like a pro.

And so phase one of Tough Mudder 2013 training has come to a close. The winner will be revealed Wednesday, but I can say whole-heartedly already that I’ve won more than the $750 prize.