Archive for January, 2014

New Orleans Style BBQ Shrimp Recipe

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BbqShrimpRecipe

Happy Super Bowl Weekend! I'm pulling hard for commercials this year. No team affiliation in the pros, I'm more of a college football fan.

I do love the sport of football and since my son is a big Peyton Manning/Broncos fan I am rolling with them. Who are you rooting for?

Since I am headed to New Orleans today for the Rock N' Roll Half Marathon, I wanted to share this recipe I got from a buddy of mine in New Orleans. Great recipe to try for the big game.

Hopefully the four times I've gone running since I signed up will pay off. Don't do this at home kids.

Without further ado, here is your recipe!

New Orleans Style BBQ Shrimp

Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 lbs shrimp, unpeeled
  • ½ lbs butter (real butter, not margarine)
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons Paul Prudhomme Seafood Magic seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons creole seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 4 oz Tabasco sauce
  • 2 oz Louisiana hot sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce (I dare you to say that W word and sound sober)
  • 2 lemons, sliced, seeds taken out
  • 1 cup dry white wine

Instructions

  1. In a large saute pan, melt butter and add all ingredients except shrimp.

  2. Bring to a low boil and allow to cook for a moment or two, stirring frequently.

  3. Add shrimp and cook for 5 to 10 minutes until shrimp are just fully cooked.

  4. Be careful not to over cook.

  5. Serve immediately or allow to steep in the juices, covered to stay warm.

It looks like a lot of work, but it isn't that bad once you get started. And for any of you who care, it is Paleo friendly. Hope you like it!

5 Ways To Eat More Vegetables

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Looks like my vegetables are ready

Looks like my vegetables are ready

How many vegetables are you eating? The recommendation is 5-7 servings a day, but do you know how many servings the average American gets? 2 servings.

I mentioned on Monday, that I could stand to eat more vegetables so I wanted to share my 5 steps to helping me do that.

I am a bit of an expert myself in the no vegetable area of expertise. I did not start consistently eating vegetables until I was in my late 20's. Nothing quite like telling your son to eat all his vegetables, when the last vegetable you had was a carrot that came with some wings while you were in college.

My 5 steps to eating more vegetables:

1. Get the day started right

Vegetables at breakfast? Crazy talk! I love me some eggs and I eat them nearly every day, so why not add some veggies? Try some frozen vegetables, heat up some coconut or olive oil, cook your vegetables in the oil, then throw in some eggs for a delicious meal. Try a green smoothie if you are in more of a rush.

2. Experiment

Get crazy baby! Go into the produce aisle and try something you can't even pronounce. Just as a heads up, you will have some stuff you love but also stuff you will want to spit out. Being a trailblazer is fraught with danger and vegetables you don't like. Pretty sure Bear Gryllis said that.

Also experiment with cooking styles: grilling, sautéing, boiling, raw. I thought asparagus was terrible, until I had asparagus brushed with olive oil and grilled. All about the preparation.

3. Pre-made saves the day 

I'm too lazy to rip a head of lettuce up into a salad. Grocery stores know this, so they have you covered. Buying the bag of salad or the big trough of salad is an easy option. Makes it real easy to throw some salad into a container and add a protein.

For instance, today I had my lettuce, chicken breast I grilled recently, a few cranberries, and some olive oil poured over the top. Shake it all up to mix everything and you have a quick and healthy meal. FYI- You still need to wash the lettuce, even if it has the triple wash guarantee.

4. Get the salad bar and actually get some salad

 

I went to Ruby Tuesday's after last week and got the salad bar. Great salad bar, but I saw some people pull of a pretty impressive feat. Get a giant plate of food from the salad bar and not get one vegetable. It was amazing!

There was cheese, bacon, pasta salad, the mayo filled fruit salad thing, spooky ham cubes, croutons, and salad dressing. Pretty impressive, but not that great for you. I am also a big fan of Jason's Deli's salad bar if you are looking into gift certificates for me.

5. Make it a priority

This is the most important thing. If you make it a priority you will eat more vegetables on a consistent basis. Don't make it a priority and you will continue to eat vegetables sporadically.

You’re sick? Again? Try this forensic sickness checklist

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No comment

No comment

That is the question I was asking myself when I was seriously sick for the second time in a month. Last time it was the flu, this time I'm pretty sure it was African Sleeping Sickness or something awful (self diagnosed).

I have always prided myself on staying healthy and never getting sick. I do all the right things. Eat right, exercise, take care of my body.

Don't I?

Did a little forensic sickness check on myself to figure out what was up.

According to this article on WebMD, these are the most common ways to compromise your immune system.

1. You're short on sleep

2. You don't exercise

3. Your diet is off

4. You're always stressed

5. You're too isolated

6. You've lost your sense of humor

I had to run through the checklist and see where I measured up. Here is what I came up with.

1. I get up at 4am every day, I think this one is obviously a red flag. Been leaning on coffee a little too hard and I think dehydration is a contributing factor. Love me some coffee, so cutting back is going to hurt.

2. Not a problem

3. Mostly good here, could always stand to eat more vegetables.

4. Not normally a problem and I shrug stress off pretty easily. But I am in key leadership roles in 3 different areas of my life. Roles where there are a lot of people depending on me. I think it is starting to get to me and I am taking steps to fix it.

5. I'm pretty isolated from dudes, but that's about it.

6. Never. I will be joking on my death bed. Which I thought I was joking from on Thursday.

I'm sure standing out in the rain yelling and teaching boot camp, working out in my garage in 10 degree weather, and not listening to my body's warning signs to slow down all contributed as well.

My wife is a nurse, so the hand washing thing is not a problem. Speaking of forensics, I sometimes wonder if she is going to use one of those CSI type lights to see if I washed my hands properly.

I'm sorry. I can't hear you unless I am looking at you over my glasses.

I'm sorry. I can't hear you unless I am looking at you over my glasses.

Have you been getting sick more than you used to? Try running through a checklist of what has changed since you've been getting sick more often.

I thought I was doing pretty well, but like I mentioned last week "What gets measured, gets managed." Check in with yourself, you might be surprised at what you find out. I know I was.

To your health!

3 Core Exercises to Tighten and Tone Your Abs

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JoeMartinFitness

If you have a Pinterest account, then I'm sure you know "Abs Are Made In The Kitchen". To be able to see your ab muscles, you have to get rid of the fat that covers them.

 
There it is again!

There it is again!

Proper nutrition is the best way to say hello to the stomach muscles. We still want to strengthen and tone those babies though, so here are 3 core exercises to tighten and tone your abs.

1. Bicycle

ACE (American Council of Exercise) did a study of which abdominal exercises was the most effective. They found that the bicycle was the most effective, with nearly two and a half times the muscle activation as the plain old crunch.

This exercise targets the rectus abdominus (aka the 6 pack muscle you think of) as well as the external obliques (love handles).

To get in position to perform the bicycle, lie on your back, place both hands behind your head, feet off the ground with legs bent at 90 degrees. Next, bring your left knee towards your chin as you rotate your right elbow towards your left knee (DO NOT push on your head), and repeat side to side for the desired amount of repetitions.

2.Vacuum

This move targets the transverse abdominus which is sometimes called the corset muscle because it keeps the abdominals held in tight. I just call it your Spanx muscle. Those muscles also act as back support and to help control breathing when lifting.

Exhale all of the air out of your lungs, expand your chest, then suck your stomach in as far as possible. Think about trying to pull your belly button into your spine. When you are just starting out, try to hold this contraction for 20 seconds. Rest 60 seconds and then do it one more time.

This move can trim inches off your waist once you get good at it. It is a secret though! Keep it on the down low.

3. Side plank

A great move for overall body strength and toning the obliques (love handles). Lay on your right side first, place your right palm on the ground, lift your hips up off the ground, and hold your body in a straight line. It is a little easier if you do this same move on your forearm instead.

If either of those are too hard, try the modified version. Lay on your right side, right palm on the ground. Instead of your legs being straight, pull your feet behind your knees, and push your hips up in the air with the side of your knee staying on the ground.

4. This

Ab Enhancer

An Out-of-Gym Experience. The magic of Huntsville Adventure Boot Camp

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Comfort zone

I was really honored to have an article about our boot camp published recently. The article really captures why we do what we do and how we go about doing it.

An Out-Of-Gym Experience

The article also talks about what I consider the 5 most important things you need to focus on in an exercise program. If you are taking care of these five things, you will reach your goals.

Do you use a FitBit?

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fitbit-flex-16

My wife earned a free FitBit at work a few months ago. Her company is pretty awesome, they earn prizes and gifts with health enhancing activities.   She was obsessed with this thing when she first got it! The FitBit Flex that she has does a lot of cool things, but the main thing she uses it for are: step counting and sleep quality tracking.   When she first started counting her steps, she had no idea how inactive she was most days. Makes sense for someone who has a desk job right?   She now obsessively (don't worry, she won't read this) gets 10,000 steps a day in. Pacing during phone calls, parking further out when she goes to the hospital, marching while brushing teeth, or whatever it takes to get there.   Our house is not normal.   Why am I telling you all this? I want you to think about how active you are. Outside of your workouts especially. How much do you move?   Do you even know? Most people are like my wife and don't even think about it.  

Peter_Drucker_Measured_Managed

  You have something you want to improve? Measure where you are now and then have a way to track improvements. This will also tell you when you are slipping backwards too.   It can be weight, inches, steps, number of pushups, how much weigh you lift. There are so many different things you can choose to improve, just make sure can measure how you get to where you want to be.   If step counting is one of your goals, you will get plenty at our Adventure Hiking Class that starts next Saturday, Jan 25th. We are almost out of slots if you still want to join.   Don't worry about tracking your steps for that class. Katie, who leads the class, is a FitBit fan too. She can tell you how many you get in 🙂

Running is more harmful than eating cheeseburgers

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giant_burger

The Wall Street Journal published an article in May that suggested that extreme running may be more detrimental to your health than eating cheeseburgers.

You can read the study ---->HERE

Personally I am a big believer in eating cheeseburgers, but that's just me…

The article has research that shows the health effects from running start to diminish when you run over 30 miles per week.

I found this quote to be the most interesting part of the article.

"Heart disease comes from inflammation and if you're constantly, chronically inflaming yourself, never letting your body heal, why wouldn't there be a relationship between over exercise and heart disease?"

-said John Mandrola, a cardiac electrophysiologist and columnist for TheHeart.org. 

 

The key from that quote is the "never letting your body heal" part. With any kind of exercise, you have to let yourself recover properly.

If you are running strictly for weight loss, I would recommend changing to shorter, more intense workouts like we do at boot camp. I also do these type of workouts myself.

These workouts will get you toned up and feeling great in less time per day.  You can get a full body workout in with a 20 minute workout.

Pick out 5 exercises (Legs, Shoulders, Chest, Back, and Core is a good template to use), then do each exercise for 30 seconds, rest 30 seconds, and then move on to the next exercise.

Go through the list 4 times total. You will strengthen your body and burn tons of calories. You can have endless options for exercises to plug into a workout that style.

PS- If you are running because that is what you love to do and you are following proper recovery protocols, keep it up! I will never discourage someone from being active.

A simple question

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How-Can-I-Help

Go take a hike!

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Monte-Sano

Glad you didn't take the title wrong. We are starting something new here in the Huntsville area.

Adventure Hiking Classes!

We will start the very first class on Saturday January 25th at 9am.

What to expect:

-Gain strength and endurance

-Learn the basics of hiking

-See the most beautiful locations in north Alabama

-Sweat, smiles, and laughter

-Improved mood

Hiking is an excellent way to get an effective, low impact workout in. It is also great for your mood and attitude to get out and explore nature.

This is open to women, men, and children who can handle 6-8 miles of hiking. If mom and/or dad join, children can come free.

There will be 5 different hikes (1 every other week) over a 10 week period. Every hike will be different and will last anywhere from 2-3 hours per hike.

And as a bonus, you will even learn plant identification.

This is going to be an awesome class, sign up today!

Adventure Hiking Class

3 ab exercises you aren’t doing, but should

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Here are 3 effective core exercises that you probably aren't doing right now. These can be done at home, but do require some minimal equipment. the 3 exercises are the Paloff press, resistance band torso twists, and suspension trainer hip drop.

Studies show that most people won't watch a video longer than 2 minutes. This video is 1:54, go watch it! That also means I could not fit in as much info as I like into the video. So here are a few further tips for these exercises.

1. Paloff press with resistance band

This what is known as an anti-rotation exercise. When you press out, you will really feel your love handles and butt muscles working hard. Start with the handles in the center of your chest, press out, hold for a couple of seconds, let it come back towards your chest, and repeat this sequence.

2. Torso twist with resistance band

Wrap the band around something that won't move, grab both handles with your hands, keep your arms straight, and rotate to your left. Make sure your arms are just holding on and not pulling the band, that is the core's job. Repeat on the other side. To make it more challenging, stand on one foot.

3. Suspension trainer hip drop

This requires a suspension trainer (TRX Jungle Gym, etc...) but could also be done with a rope if you were in a pinch. I am using a suspension trainer with a door attachment. The door attachment just rests on top of the door, you close the door, hopefully no one opens the door mid-exercise, and you can loop the suspension trainer though.

Then you will stand with one foot forward, one foot back, the lead foot will be the one closest to the door attachment. Place both handles over your head, elbows up high, lead with your ribs, drop your hip away from the attachment, and then stand back up. Repeat on both sides and then have really sore love handles the next day.

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