Every January, I reflect back on January 2009, when I first started this blog. I think about how I felt back then. Scared, unhealthy, hopeless. And how far I’ve come. Even with this recent injury, I always knew that I had a core of well being inside that wasn’t going to go away even if I couldn’t do much.
This coming January will be my 5th healthaversary. Five years! And I’m going to celebrate in two ways. One, I’m going to participate in the Hot Chocolate 5k on January 12th in San Francisco. I would LOVE to have as many friends doing it with me. A hot chocolate party! It comes in both 5k and 15k distances. And the “swag bag” is crazy awesome – it’s actually a fleece jacket! What!
I’ll also be hosting my traditional walk-to-the-labyrinth and brunch at another time, but I realllly wanted to do something “5-ish” for this special five year commemoration. After the ordeal I went through this fall, I am more grateful than ever for my health. This will be the first 5k since my injury. I am hopeful and optimistic that I will be able to complete the 5k, most likely walking. That pesky hip injury I was dealing with BEFORE my ruptured disc? It’s talking to me again (sigh).
So please please please sign up! 15k or 5k, your choice. You can run like a gazelle or waddle like a wombat (that’ll be me). It’s probably going to be chillyish but we will have some cozy fleece! And hot cocoa! It will be a big, beautiful, Foodie McBody Party. No running necessary! (but it’s certainly allowed and encouraged if you like running)
PRICES ARE GOING UP DECEMBER 30th so please take advantage of the early pricing. If you use the code FOODFOODMUG, you will also get a free hot chocolatey mug on race day. Yay swag!
And…. Ta-da!! As an official Hot Chocolate Blogger, I have been authorized to give away one FREE RACE REGISTRATION!
This has been a really amazing five years. The most challenging, exciting, incredible five years of my life. I’m ready to celebrate. Join me!
If you want a chance to be the recipient of this free registration, leave me a comment here below and tell me FIVE THINGS that keep you healthy! Also, follow the Hot Chocolate 15/5k on Twitter and Facebook to get all the sweet details.
And the winner of the race registration is… JULES!! Congrats, Jules, I’ll be sending you your registration code. Can’t wait to see you (and everyone else!) out there on January 12th!
I haven’t been a person who (knock wood) who has had a lot of trouble with sleep. I LOVE sleep and I haven’t generally had much trouble falling or staying asleep. Getting up has been another story.
Anyway- recently the good folks at WeGoHealth invited me to try out a couple of health related apps. I am, as many of you know, a real fan of gadgets and gizmos when it comes to monitoring my health and/or fitness. So I jumped at the chance. Several of the manufacturers and inventors were going to be at the Body 2.0 fair in San Francisco so I wanted to try them out before meeting them in person.
One of the apps that really caught my attention was an iPhone app called SleepTime. The idea is that you put the phone near your pillow, then the app monitors your deep sleep, light sleep and awake times. The deep (REM) sleep is really necessary for health. It’s when all the good renewal happens. BUT if you wake up during a REM period, it can be very disorienting and disruptive.
SleepTime keeps track of your various wake/sleep states, and makes it a goal of waking you up only from light sleep. So if, say, you want to get up at 7:00am, it will track your sleep and wake you up during your lightest phase between 6:30 and 7:00. I learned the hard way that it is MUCH better to get up at 6:30 during light sleep, than it is to wake up at 6:55 from REM sleep.
Pretty much every night for the past week, I’ve woken up (thanks to SleepTime) during light sleep. I’ve been exercising and eating well, and feeling alert and energetic. But one night I set my “window” too narrowly (I designated a 10 minute rather than a 30 minute window). The app did not have any choice but to wake me up during REM. WELL…
I woke up all emotionally jangled. I’d been in the depths of some disturbing, upsetting dream. I couldn’t fully “wake up” no matter how much coffee I had. I had had a full 8 hours so I should have felt rested, but I didn’t. In fact, I felt like crap all day. I made some truly horrible food choices, things I had not eaten in months/years. I chose not to exercise because I was just too exhausted. In fact, it was a total bust of a day until I went to bed again that night. What a wreck.
I was amazed to wake up from light sleep the next morning and feel 10000% better. That next day I made great food choices and worked out and generally felt awesome. It was like (no pun intended) night and day. I’m not kidding!
We all know that sleep deprivation – not enough sleep – can lead to stress, high blood pressure and weight gain from increased cortisol (stress hormone). I never thought I had an “issue” with sleep because I knew I slept “enough.” But it’s about quality, not just quantity.
I’ve been in touch with the folks at Azumio, Inc (who make the app). They also make some other nifty health apps called Instant Heart Rate, Stress Check and Stress Doctor (biofeedback to decrease stress – cool huh?). I will be reviewing those later on. Anyway, these apps are all free. I encourage you to download them and try them out. People who leave comments here after trying one of the free apps are eligible to get a code for an updated, more nifty version. Give them a try!
Popchips always has a great presence at Fitbloggin and this year they were out with their silly photo booth which was lots of fun. They also had many samples of their tasty new Tortilla Popchips (yum!) for us to try. I loved the Chili Limon ones.
Anyway, the generous Popchips people have offered up a CASE (12 packs!!) of these yummy snacks for one of my blog readers, as well as provided some delicious recipes to share that have particular “pairings” with the various new flavors.
Do you want a case of Popchips coming to your house? I bet you do!! So get on it! The deadline is this Wednesday, October 10th at 3:00pm PST.
Leave a comment here telling me which new flavor of Popchips you’re most excited to try, and what you’ll pair them with. (be creative)
And for everyone — Popchips has teamed up with chef Aaron Sanchez to share these recipes.
My favorite was the ceviche with the Chili Limon chips. Doesn’t this look good???
Ceviche with chili limón tortilla popchips
Usually the fish in a ceviche is trimmed into large chunks, but for scooping up this tangy-sweet version with brightly flavored and spicy chili limón tortilla popchips, I’ve trimmed the fish into small cubes, 1/4- to 1/2-inch in size. The result not only makes a ceviche that’s perfect for scooping, but also a speedy version that “cooks” in the fresh lime juice in less than an hour.
Makes 6 servings
1 pound fresh halibut filets (or any firm-fleshed white fish, such as haddock, red snapper or sea bass), diced into 1/2-inch cubes
1 cup fresh lime juice (from approximately 8 to 10 limes)
1 fresh red Serrano chili, seeds discarded, chili thinly sliced
1 teaspoon salt
1 small mango, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 scallion, white and green parts thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1. In a medium-sized glass bowl, combine the fish with the lime juice, Serrano and salt. Cover and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours. The fish cubes will “cook” in the lime juice until they are opaque.
2. Half an hour before serving, stir the mango, scallion, cilantro and olive oil into the ceviche. Cover and refrigerate 20 minutes to let the flavors meld. Serve with chili limón tortilla popchips for scooping up the ceviche.
Grilled Chicken Cemitas and Garlic-Chipotle Love with salsa tortilla popchips
These sandwiches are like Mexican subs—overstuffed with all sorts of goodness, bursting with flavor, and topped with a mind-blowingly delicious sauce of roasted garlic pureed with smoky chipotles. Have a lot of napkins on hand! salsa tortilla popchips bring a crispy counterpoint to all the juicy sandwich fillings and a bright flavor that can withstand everything going on inside that bun.
Makes 4 servings
For the Chipotle Love Sauce:
1 cup of canola oil
12 garlic cloves
3 tablespoon chopped canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
zest of one lime
2 teaspoon kosher salt
For the Cemitas:
2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cumin
1 ripe Haas avocado
Juice of 1 lime
4 cemita rolls or hamburger rolls with sesame seeds
1 cup refried beans, warmed (from 1 15-ounce can)
8 ounces Oaxaca or mozzarella cheese, grated
Sliced ripe tomato
Thinly sliced lettuce
Fresh cilantro leaves
1. Make the Chipotle Love: In a dry medium heavy nonreactive sauce pot place oil and garlic cloves and cover with foil and place in 300 degree oven for 45 minutes till garlic has browned and become soft. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Then place remaining ingredients and cooled garlic oil mix in a food processor and puree till a smooth paste.
2. Prepare a medium-hot charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill with the lid down for 10 minutes on high.
3. Split each chicken breast in half horizontally and lay each piece between two pieces of plastic wrap. Pound each breast half until it’s one-quarter inch thick (if you don’t have a meat pounder, use the bottom of a small saucepan). Sprinkle each piece with salt, pepper and cumin on each side.
4. Mash the avocado with the lime juice and season with salt, and warm the refried beans on the stovetop or in the microwave.
5. Grill the chicken breasts for 4 to 5 minutes, turning once. Set aside and keep warm. Split the buns and brush lightly with olive oil. Grill, cut sides down, until just golden brown, about a minute.
6. To assemble each sandwich, spread the bottom half of each toasted roll with a quarter of the mashed avocado. Top with a chicken breast, then spoon on a quarter of the refried beans. Divide the cheese among the sandwiches, and top with tomato, lettuce and a sprinkle of cilantro. Drizzle on a generous amount of Chipotle Love and top with the remaining bun half. Cut each sandwich in half before serving.
And the winner is….Suz!!Congrats, Suz. Please email me your postal address so I can let the Popchips folks now. Thanks everyone for participating!
Sometimes we need to be alone. Sometimes we just need some quiet. A place to think and to be with ourselves. What a concept! I have been stealing moments, hours and sometimes days and nights at this particular blissful place for more than 25 years now. It has been such a place of healing, and abundant creativity and lovely just-right solitude.
I am hosting a special weekend retreat in a few weeks and I am so excited. It’s going to be an incredible gathering. We all have a body. They all hold infinite stories inside us. This weekend will be an opportunity to listen to those stories and then bring them into being by:
Writing (inspiring prompts will be provided)
Making art (collage, paint, calligraphy, origami and more) in the fully stocked Art Cellar
Resting or meditating
Walking or hiking (there is a wonderful local “tree walk” that includes visiting a number of amazing historic and beautiful trees)
Enjoying a massage (optional/additional cost)
Being a hermit in the Hermitage (one of my favorite things EVER)
I’m thrilled to announce that special guest Bethany Trombly will be leading an optional session called “Bodymindfull” (how perfect is that?). A dancer and teacher, she has created a method of transformative movement art that “allows people to connect with their body’s wisdom and stories, and to move more consciously, purposefully and meaningfully in their worlds.” She is a joy!
And finally, writer, blogger and artist Wendy Williams will share some of her personal drawings and artwork and how they have helped her heal some of her own body’s deeply held stories.
I am so moved and honored to have these inspiring guests, as well as a group of (so far, only) absolutely wonderful women who will be gathering together in both silence and sharing. I can’t wait.
BIG NEWS: I am able to offer one full scholarship to the event. All lodging, meals and retreat costs paid for. I can do this for one person. I would preferably like to offer this spot to someone who really wants to attend but would have to travel quite a distance to come. I would also like to hear from people who feel they could really benefit from this retreat, for whatever reason. Tell me your reasons. Tell me your circumstance. Whoever receives this scholarship will need to provide their own transportation to and from San Rafael, CA, either by foot, bike, plane, train or bus! Email me by this Friday, September 16th at midnight. I’ll be making a decision by Sunday the 18th.
(this is not the Official Fitbloggin’ recap, but a special outtake!)
So it turns out that Zumba had a MAJOR presence at Fitbloggin 2011. There was Zumba booty-shaking class, there were Zumba virtual video machines, there were Zumba instructors and there was Zumba swag.
I just came home with the Zumba swag.
I’ve been to exactly one Zumba class in my life. It gave my already injured ankle an owie, and i was also intimidated by my extreme klutziness. Even though the music was fun, and watching the extremely hyperkinetic teacher was fun, it was not fun for me to DO.
So I slunk around in the hallway with the anit-Zumba club while everyone else jumped around and shrieked and burned on the average of 750-850 calories during Zumba hour.
I’ve been eyeing my little Zumba DVD since getting home though. I have to confess that I snagged a small pile of them from the huge Room of Swag on the final day.
So I have a proposal for y’all out there. If anyone else out there has had a small fascination/big phobia regarding Zumba, this is your chance. To try it out in the privacy and comfort of your own home, knowing that I will be stumbling around and perhaps repeatedly hitting the PAUSE button and going, “Whaa…??”
I’ve got six DVDs to give away!!
And there’s something else going on. Some of you may know that I have this lovely retreat, Stories of the Body, coming up in September. (click here for details) It is my deep desire to fill this space with amazing and wonderful individuals and to build a kind of awesome mini-community like we had at Fitbloggin (only there will be no 5k and no talk of SEO or monetizing).
So, in order to be eligible for the Zumba DVDs, I am asking you to (if you are on Facebook) – RSVP to the event here (yes, no or maybe), and then SHARE it with anybody you think would resonate with such an event.
Then come back here and leave a comment telling me how many people you’ve shared with. (I mean don’t share with your whole email list, only with people whom it would FIT WITH – this might only mean 3, or 5, or…???) Each “share” is worth a Zumba point.
Top six Zumba-point getters will get a Zumba DVD.
Oh and P.S.! If any of your friends register for the retreat with the code “ZUMBAPHOBIA” they will get $25 off! (same goes for anybody reading this blog post)
Deadline: Wednesday, June 1st! GO!
And the winners are:
June! (from Facebook)
Stan! (from Facebook)
Contact me here with your mailing address, and I’ll send the DVDs out this week!
Well, the Chobani Fairy was certainly smiling on me this week. I was greeted one day by a GIANT BOX that had been delivered to my door, containing this stunning array of Chobani yogurts! I have to admit. I love a certain Other Greek yogurt and had never even TRIED Chobani until this week. WELL.
Where have you been all my life?
Since then, I’ve been eating Chobani for breakfast and snack (and sometimes dessert) all week. It is WONDERFUL. I’ve had the peach, the mango, the pomegranate, the blueberry and the pineapple. Members of my Extremely Helpful Family have tasted the vanilla, the black cherry, the strawberry, the lemon and vanilla. All of them have been given the thumbs up but my hands-down all time favorite is the MANGO. All of them have chunks of real fruit and not just the weird jam-like stuff that other yogurts have. It is so, sooooo goooooooooooooood.
I just emailed all of my local grocers and begged them to stock the Mango, if not all the other flavors!
And you know how awesome and generous the Chobani Fairy is? She has agreed to bestow the same awesome sampler case upon one of my very very lucky blog readers! Yes, this is one of the sweetest giveaways ever.
To be eligible to win win win all of this yum yum yum, you need to do the following things:
Leave a comment HERE telling me which flavor you are most excited to try.
Go to Chobani’s Facebook page and “like” them. Which is certainly not hard to do. Say something friendly to them. 🙂
Go to MY Facebook page and “like” me. (but I hope it’s real like, and not just airquotes-like!)
You all know I was lucky enough to win a copy of Rocco DiSpirito’s amazing cookbook Now Eat This! We have been going through the recipes and they have been shockingly EASY, fast and delicious. We’ve already made the tortilla soup half a dozen times and now we’re really into the turkey nachos. YUM. On the heels of the bestselling success of his low-calorie Now Eat This! cookbook, Rocco Dispirito has a new book featuring a weight-loss program “guaranteed to produce maximum results with minimum effort.”
Award-winning celebrity chef Rocco DiSpirito changed his life and his health-without giving up the foods he loves or the flavor. He has lost more than 20 pounds, participated in dozens of triathlons, and-after an inspirational role as a guest chef on The Biggest Loser-changed his own diet and the caloric content of classic dishes on a larger scale. In NOW EAT THIS! DIET, complete with a foreword by Dr. Mehmet Oz, DiSpirito offers readers a revolutionary 2-week program for dropping 10 pounds quickly, with little effort, no deprivation, and while still eating 6 meals a day and the dishes they crave, like mac & cheese, meatloaf, BBQ pork chops, and chocolate malted milk shakes. The secret: Rocco’s unique meal plans and his 75 recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and snack time, all with zero bad carbs, zero bad fats, zero sugar, and maximum flavor. Now readers can eat more and weigh less-it’s never been so easy!
Now Eat This! Diet was published for the first time two days ago on the 22nd (congrats Rocco!) and I am lucky enough to have a free, signed copy for a giveaway! Here’s a little peek into one of the recipes: (click to enlarge) I’ll be giving away a copy of this book ON FRIDAY (April 1st) so if you want to be that lucky recipient, leave a comment here and tell me your favorite comfort food! I bet there’s a healthy version of it in Rocco’s book.
For anybody who really wants this book and either can’t wait or doesn’t win – there are many ways you can get your hands on one.