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Stay positive…
What does it mean to be a positive thinker?
According to cnnhealth.com, Positive thinking doesn’t mean that you keep your head in the sand and ignore life’s less pleasant situations. Positive thinking just means that you approach the unpleasantness in a more positive and productive way. You think the best is going to happen, not the worst.
Researchers continue to explore the effects of positive thinking and optimism on health. Health benefits that positive thinking may provide include:

  • Increased life span
  • Lower rates of depression
  • Lower levels of distress
  • Greater resistance to the common cold
  • Better psychological and physical well-being
  • Reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease
  • Better coping skills during hardships and times of stress

Scientists aren’t sure why positive thinking seems to lead to these health benefits…but frankly, who cares?
If staying positive is going to promote better health that’s reason enough for me to endeavor to do it. Let’s promote positivity in training and in life so we all can be healthier and happier!

Taco stuffed Acorn Squash
Ingredients:
2 acorn squash (cut in half, seeds removed)
For the beef:
1 tbls EVOO
1 lb ground grass fed beef
1/2 tbls cumin
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp chipotle chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 avocado chopped

for the pico de gallo:
3 vine ripened tomatoes (chopped)
1 yellow pepper (chopped)
1 green bell pepper (chopped)
1/2 jalapeno pepper (you guessed it…chopped)
1/2 sweet onion (finely chopped)
1/2 cup fresh Cilantro (chopped)
juice of 1/2 lime
1 clove garlic (minced)
salt

Directions:
Heat your oven to 400. Place Acorn squash cut side down on a baking sheet in a 1/4 inch of water. Bake for approx. 30 min or until skin dents when you poke it. Meanwhile heat up a skillet with 1 tbls EVOO, and brown up your beef.
Once browned drain half of the liquid, then return to the stove and add the rest of your seasonings. Turn the heat way down and let it simmer so the flavors blend. In a large bowl combine all your Pico ingredients and mix well. Once your acorn squash is cooked carefully scrape out about half of the flesh leaving the skin intact. Mix the squash in with your meat, stirring to break it up. Taste the mixture to see if more salt is needed. Once you got it the way you like it, scoop a healthy portion back into the acorn bowls you now have and top with Pico and avocados. So easy and so tasty.


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It’s time for a tasty throw back breakfast recipe!

There is simply too much excellence going on in the gym lately, I can’t say enough about all you people. The continuous testimonials from you guys truly are moving, and they motivate us to continue to do our best to get you to your goals. We appreciate our athletes on a level that words just can’t express. Thank you all so much, keep doing what your doing! You make us proud everyday.

Now about food…

Ingredients:
For the Pancakes
1 sweet potato baked and skin removed
2 tbls of coconut flour
3 eggs
¼ cup coconut butter (I think you could sub in almond butter if you want)
½ banana mashed
½ cup of almond milk give or take
½ tsp baking soda
dash of vanilla extract
dash of cinnamon

For the Blueberry Coconut Compote
½ cup Fresh blueberries
1 tbls water
1 tbls maple syrup (or sweetener of your choice)
1 tbls coconut butter
shredded unsweetened coconut to garnish

Directions:
Mix all your pancake ingredients together except your milk. Once they are thoroughly combined start slowly mixing in your almond milk. You want this batter to be thin enough to come off of a spoon but not nearly as thin as conventional pancakes. Heat your pan up and grease it with some coconut oil. I like to start with tiny pancakes using less than a ¼ cup of batter, pour it in and spread it out a little. I start small because if my pan ends up not being the right temp and they cook weird at least I didn’t waste a bunch of batter and I can tweak the heat level accordingly. When they start to steam a little and the edges are peeling up fairly easily with the spatula, flip em. Meanwhile in a small sauce pan over medium heat add all your compote ingredients. Stir, mashing some of the blueberries as they heat. Once it’s mixed and you have mashed your desired amount of blueberries turn the heat as low as possible to keep it warm while you finish your pancakes. Serve it up, pancakes topped with compote, sprinkled with coconut.

 


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Why being the best, isn’t ALWAYS best and not being the best can be better:

Let me start off by saying I can’t speak from experience as to exactly what being the best is like. This post is based off of first hand observation mostly.
It’s cool being able to say you’re “number one”, the champ, the best on your team (or in your field, or at your gym, or fill in the blank) I guess.
But does it benefit you?
Does knowing you’re the best make you better? Who do you think works harder, the person who proves to be the “best” in the group every time they do anything, or the person next to that guy?
The person that is striving to catch up, that knows he’s not the best. See, that guy gets a front row seat to what is possible although not yet within his reach. He has a tangible, visible presence, reminding him that he needs to push a little farther if he wants to become better. What does the guy who knows he’s the best have?
Well I’ll tell you right now if he doesn’t have the drive and physical as well as mental work capacity of Fronning, he’s got a tough road to improvement.
I think Rich has something very, very, few people have (besides the obvious: talent/ strength/ genetics/ etc.)  I think he has the ability to view himself as equal to his competitors and associates regardless of if he has proven his superiority. He stays humble, constantly aware that there can be someone “better” right around the corner. He’s the exception though.
The guy who is the “best” around, and has proven it multiple times can become complacent. He has very little to strive for because he is already on top, so why keep climbing?
(There is also the sad and pitiful guy who thinks he’s the best, he is quite sure of it, and he is not at all correct. Don’t be that guy, that guy is lonely.)
Be the person who surrounds himself with those superior to him. Who enjoys the accomplishments as they come, but stays hungry. Stays motivated as they work to become “better” alongside the “best” athletes.  And most importantly stays humble if they ever get to be the “best” that’s making someone else “better”. I am fortunate enough to constantly be surrounded by superior athletes.
No matter what, when I walk into class at Crossfit Factory Square there is someone who is stronger, faster, or more skilled than me, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Coconut Cranberry Bark:
Ingredients:
1 bag “Enjoy Life” chocolate chunks
1/2 cup unsweetened cranberries
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1 cup any combination of raw cashews, pistachios, macadamia nuts, pecans (or pretty much anything else that suits your fancy)
Directions:
Pre-heat your oven to 300. Spread all your ingredients on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. You want a single layer but with all the pieces touching. Bake for 10-15 minutes.
Take a spatula and spread the chocolate making sure its coating everything. Pop that baby in the freezer for about an hour. Once it’s hardened you can take it out and break it up to share, or your can just keep it one giant bark slab and eat it all and have a tummy ache later.

 


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Sometimes you just got to stand back and take it all in. Enjoy the little things, they add up to the very big things. Belly laughs, the sun shining, hitting thirty unbroken double unders without peeing your pants. All the beautiful small things that shouldn’t ever be taken for granted. Stop, and appreciate them. Regionals was super fun, and I’m surprised at what stood out for me most this year. It was the athletes that didn’t deliver as they hoped they would, the ones who didn’t win their heats and didn’t rank high in the end. I watched them struggle through wods that challenged them, and I saw them leave the floor  not defeated but with smiles on there faces. I read their posts on FB or whatever expressing their gratitude for support they received and for the opportunity they had just to be there. They were able to step back from the task of competing and appreciate the other things, the people, support, opportunity, even the gorgeous weather. So many “little things” to enjoy, even in the face of less than perfect outcomes. Everything is awesome. Let’s make this summer the one where we appreciate all the awesome things, even the small ones.

Bacon Maple “Nut-Nola”

ingredients:

1 cup cashews

1 cup pecans chopped

1/2 cup coconut flakes

1 cup slivered almonds

2 tbs maple syrup raw

1 tbls coconut oil

4 strips bacon

1 tsp bacon fat

dash o’ salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325. Fry up your bacon until cooked but not crispy. Remove from heat and chop. Salvage 1 tsp. bacon fat. In a large bowl add all your ingredients and mix well. Spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10 min and mix, then another 10 min and mix again. Repeat this for 40 min, or until nuts have browned. Allow to cool mad then store in an airtight container. EAT. UP.


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Breakfast makes me smile.
It’s like the first time you see an old friend after being apart for a while.
“Food!!!  What’s it been, Like 9 or 10 hours? I’ve missed you!! Get in my belly.”
My breakfasts are usually pretty big. Almost like my lunches, and dinners, and snacks. Many educated individuals agree that breakfast is of the utmost importance.
So what about when you have super early mornings? No time to cook before leaving the house? Or you’re trying to omit grains and dairy from your eating, so your
previous quick breakfast of cereal or yogurt is out? Make ahead breakfast that is easily stored and reheated can be a life-saver!!
One of my favorite go to pre-made breakfasts is Egg Muffins. It’s basically scrambled egg in the shape of a muffin, and you can add in anything your little heart desires.
They are easy to eat on the go, travel and store well, and can be reheated in the microwave in about 30sec.
One item that I would recommend purchasing is a set of silicone muffin liners, they don’t stick to your food and you never have to worry about restocking your paper muffin liner stash again.
Have you ever mixed up muffin or cupcake batter only to find you’re out of liners??? The horror.

Roasted pepper and basil Egg Muffins
ingredients:
10 Eggs
1/2 cup fresh chopped basil
¼ cup almond milk
1 lb uncured bacon cooked and chopped
I added  ½lb of chicken sausage too…I like meat
½ cup roasted red peppers chopped
salt
pinch of cayenne pepper
pinch of nutmeg
coconut oil cooking spray
Directions: Preheat your oven to 350. Place your eggs, almond milk, salt, pepper, and nutmeg in a bowl and scramble. Spray a light layer of coconut oil onto your muffin liners.
Add your chopped basil, bacon, roasted peppers, and sausage if you added that and mix. Using a measuring cup carefully pour egg muffin batter into your liners making them about 2/3 full.
Take care to be sure enough meat and veggies is getting into each muffin so you don’t end up with a boring old plain egg muffin. Pop  those in the oven for about 30 min.
Once the centers are set you can take them out and let them cool a little before eating. I usually store them in a zip lock bag in the fridge; I think they would freeze decently if that was
necessary but they never last that long in my house.


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It’s been a really long time since I expressed my deep appreciation for this place and the people in it.
I had an overwhelming sense of gratitude as I was leaving the box today. It could have been that I was WOD drunk… but I think it was actually more of the super positive vibe. It’s not like I PR’d something and was high off of that or anything, it was just a good day. Nice weather, and interaction with people who are happy, positive, supportive and generally down to have a good time.
I saw the inclusiveness that this breeds.  No one seems out of place.
From the crazy naturally athletic folks to those of us who struggle with the warm-up, from the high-school students to the people pushing 70… everyone “belongs”. Everyone gets the cheers, the encouragement from our coaches mid-wod and of course the banging workout that they came for in the first place.
I know every person that wants to get healthy and so joins a gym doesn’t necessarily get to experience this. So I’m expressing my gratitude that I do.
My gratitude to every person, coach and member alike that contribute to making our box what it is.
Thank you.
In further expression of my appreciation I will share this enchilada recipe….
This is basically a mash up of a few recipes from a few incredibly talented paleo bloggers.

For the tortillas:
http://stupideasypaleo.com/2013/08/23/simple-paleo-tortillas/
For the chicken:
http://www.naturalmommainprogress.com/2014/01/21/paleo-chicken-enchiladas-recipe/
Then to top it off use this tasty dressing:
http://www.preppypaleo.com/2013/07/paleo-avocado-cilantro-lime-dressing.html
There is simply no reason to fix what isn’t broken.
These components are absolutely perfect to make delicious enchiladas so instead of rewriting all these folks recipes I figured links would be more convenient… plus it gives you an opportunity to peruse their other creations and get inspired. Eat up!!