Daily Life/No Time to Workout…UGH!

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Struggles, commitments, obligations, deadlines, everyday life, call it what you will, we all have them. Sometimes it seems that there is never enough time to workout, or any for that matter. Being a Personal Trainer, parent, business owner, husband and all of the other labels that go with that, I face this myself.

Life can and does become hectic at times. It is very easy to think that nobody else could possibly have the difficult issues that face us everyday. The truth is we all do, we just handle them differently. Some people prioritize better, ask for help, or just push through hoping that it will all fall into place.

When you feel overwhelmed, like you cannot possibly take on anything else, stop and give yourself a pat on the back. To have made it as far as we do takes an enormous amount of energy; mentally, spiritually and physically.

Set aside or just take a couple of minutes each day to connect with yourself, your friends, and your loved ones. Squeeze in a few minutes of exercise to keep your body fit and healthy enough to continue to give your 110% at everything that is thrown at you. The more we let ourselves go, the harder it is to bounce back.

Fitness comes in many forms, and not all of it is physical. No matter what you choose to make your foundation, make sure you inspect it and keep it strong.

In fitness, Bob

Black Bean and Corn Salsa with Tilapia

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IMG_20150304_212057_118     This amazingly simple, healthy and nutritious dish was originally put together as a dipping salsa. However, when it came time for dinner, it was warmed and served as a bed for grilled tilapia.

The ingredients were 1 can black beans (rinsed), 1 can corn (drained), 1 can diced tomatoes, 1 small can diced green chilies, 1/4 Lg onion diced, 1/4 cup cilantro, 1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder, and a dash or two of lime juice.

I threw all of this together and let it chill in the fridge. It definitely was not one of my most thought inspired dishes but it turned out very nice.

In fitness, Bob

Banana Peanut Butter Snack

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IMG_20150219_121116_012   I was chatting with fellow blogger Tony, (One Regular Guy Writing about Food, Exercise and Living Longer), about the uses of peanut butter and coconut oil this morning and I came up with this.

IMG_20150219_114114_055    I sliced one banana into 1/2 ” rounds, mixed 1 Tablespoon coconut oil with 2 Tablespoons PB2 and spread it onto the banana rounds. I then dipped them into cacao powder.

IMG_20150219_115831_542    These make for a quick, healthy, and nutritious energy snack. You could easily substitute a cacao nib for the powder. This was not as quick as slathering peanut butter on a banana but it kept my portions in check.

In fitness, Bob

Stuffed Kabocha squash

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I threw together a meal yesterday that I was sure my wife and I would enjoy. Filling, healthy, nutritious and well balanced, all in one dish.
The Kabocha squash, has a sweet, nutty flavor, much like a chestnut. It is rich in beta carotene, with iron, calcium, potassium, vitamin c, folic acid and B vitamins.

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I began by precooking some rice. I prefer Thai Red Cargo rice for the nutty flavor and texture. Next I made my stuffing mixture. One small apple, finely diced, 1 cup cooked rice, 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, and lightly seasoned it with allspice, ground ginger and cinnamon. I halved the squash, scooped out the seeds, and filled it with my stuffing mixture.

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I placed the stuffed squash halves on a foil lined sheet, gave them a comfy foil tent to keep them moist, and put them in the preheated oven for 45 minutes at 400°.
I sprinkled a little, (1/2t), brown sugar over each half and served them. These turned out wonderful! The skin of the Kabocha is edible as well. Next time I will add some chopped dates to the mixture.

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In fitness, Bob

Be a Star, or, you are what you eat

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IMG_20150120_103442_794  The Starfruit, or carambola, is an interesting looking fruit, that when sliced, reveals a star shaped cross section. This is a fruit that I had never tried for whatever reason. My wife picked up a couple the other day, so I did what came natural, I googled it.

Starfruit grows on the Averrhoa carambola tree and is native to Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, Philippines, Bangladesh, and Indonesia. It is also cultivated in Latin America, Carribean and parts of the United States.

The fruit is usually 2-6 inches long, yellow when ripe, and the entire fruit is edible. The seeds can be discarded, however I found them to have quite a nutty flavor. When serving, the brown ridges may be trimmed, but it is more for presentation. The top, or end that grew from the tree, is also trimmed off.

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It is at this point that you can slice the starfruit into either thin or thick slices for serving. The entire fruit can be used for juice as well. Children will love the shape of this snack as a finger food, or you can serve it atop a salad, suspended in jello, pudding, relishes or jellies.

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Apple, pear, grape and citrus would be the best description of flavor for the starfruit. There are sour varieties that are generally the smaller fruit, but typically the sweeter variety are found at the grocers. These will ripen after picked, but the sugar content will not increase.

Starfruit are rich in potassium, vitamin C and antioxidants. Antimicrobial and antioxidant properties exist as well. Like the grapefruit, check with your doctor or druggist, to see if there are any contraindications with prescription medicines. If you have kidney problems, the oxalic acid content may be an issue as well.

IMG_20150120_105111_366 No matter how you choose to use it, this is a must try. Be a star!

In fitness, Bob

Finger Food

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My wife and I don’t do the mini tacos, stuffed mushrooms, breaded zucchini or other mini finger food treats that some people enjoy. We also chose not to go out.
So anyhow, we stayed in after picking up clam, octopus, salmon, tuna, scallops and a spicy tuna roll.
I sliced those babies up and we devoured them. Sushi, home style for 2015.
Happy New Year, be safe and healthy.

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Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

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IMG_20141030_084415_447  Happy Halloween to all! This season is full of the smell of leaves, candy apples, goblin cookies, popcorn balls and yes pumpkin.

We went to the farmer’s market last weekend to brouse through the squash, end of season tomatoes, apples and of course pumpkin. As is tradition, my stepson is allowed to pick the largest pumpkin he can carry, to be carved. This years choice was beautiful.

After the carving was finished, a fine job by the way, I was given the task of preparing the seeds for roasting. After separating the seeds from the pulp, I rinsed and drained them, and then soaked them overnight in salt water.

IMG_20141030_085336_208  This morning I drained them, spread them out on a cookie sheet, sprinkled them with ginger, wasabi powder and a little sugar and gave them a stir to coat evenly. Then into the oven at `200 for at least 2 hours.

IMG_20141030_083914_718  I have got to tell you that the smell of the ginger wafting through the house is fabulous! My father always preferred using Lowery’s Season Salt. Most people prefer just salt, and you can choose what you like. Maybe pumpkin pie spice would be appropriate? Some cinnamon and brown sugar perhaps?

Pumpkin seeds are a source of phosphorous, magnesium, manganese, and copper. There are also small amounts of zinc and iron as well as Vitamin E. Pepitas, or pumpkin seeds, are also a good source of protein. Nutritionally, seeds are a great addition to the diet.

However you choose to enjoy them, they are a part of the fall season, with a healthy benefit.

In fitness, Bob