It has been a few weeks since my last entry, however, rest assured I have still been maintaining my workouts and my good habits. I even started to incorporate green powder shakes and protein smoothies in my routine. I also added a chewy multivitamin and vitamin D3 to help with my immune system and better my health overall. Last Thursday, I went to donate blood and I can confirm that my body is doing very well. My hemoglobin was at great level and my blood pressure was 118 over 75, which is amazing because it used to be 135 over 86. It’s all paying off and its made me never want to stop. I’ve bumped up my lifting sessions to six days a week and I also do cardio six times a week. It sounds a little over board, but I can honestly say I crave working out and I feel incomplete without it. I’ve increased the number of reps of each of my lifting exercises and I have also increased the weight by at least 50%. The only thing that has been a negative is that my weight is still right around 255 pounds, however, I think its more due heavy lifting and drinking protein smoothies (at least that’s what I tell myself). If you are looking for an amazing smoothie I would recommend Nutrition 402 on 120th and L. They don’t taste like protein or chalky and its fantastic after a long workout.
So this is a food blog so let’s get right to the food/recipes. I don’t actually have a recipe to share per se, but I do have some great meal prep ideas and suggestions to get you started on your healthy lunches and dinners. Not only will it save a bunch of time but you won’t need to buy so many ingredients and seasonings to make these delicious dishes. I plan it by selecting my protein, carb, and veggie for each of my meals. For my protein I tend to get chicken, fish, turkey burgers, or pork loin. For my carb I lean towards sweet potatoes and cauliflower mash (great recipe to follow). Finally, for greens, I usually do either a mushroom, asparagus, or squash. Really anything that you love you can incorporate into your cooking. I tend to use meats that you can easily grill because then you can knock out a lot of cooking without having to dirty a lot of pots and pans. Usually for the seasonings I keep it really simple. I always use salt and pepper (of course) then some garlic powder, chili powder, or lemon pepper seasoning. When I make fish I use Tony’s cajun seasoning. It does wonders. For the sweet potatoes and the cauliflower I usually just roast them in the oven at 425 degrees for 30-40 minutes (prior to baking the s. p. I slice them in 1in rounds for quicker cooking). Then I toss all my veggies in olive oil and throw it all on the grill (once it reaches 450 degrees) with my proteins. Quick and easy.
If its your first time using the grill, just make sure that you have a meat thermometer so that you cook all the proteins evenly (which you can look up on the USDAs website). Once all your food medley is cooked; I just toss in a carb, a veggie, and a protein in some glassware (you can also use plastic Tupperware too). Now for the cauliflower mash recipe. After the cauliflower is done roasting in the oven, throw it in a mixing bowl and squish it with a cup or something handy you have. I then throw in some butter while its still hot, and then some heavy cream, and lastly some Parmesan cheese (you can also add in some garlic). Then mix, and viola you have a beautiful cauliflower mash for your dishes.
The key to meal prepping is to ensure that you make dishes that you will actually enjoy eating. If sweet potatoes or asparagus isn’t really you’re thing, then change it up to incorporate a veggie you love. That’s the best part about this, you can make anything you want as long as it easy and quick. The last thing you want to do is make dishes that are going to take longer to make than actually cooking each day, or making something gross you won’t actually eat. The other thing I would really suggest is to get little sides or things to spice up your dishes. Usually I get some green tomatillo salsa from Trader Joe’s, or I get those Wholey Guacamole cups to mix in with my meal. Lastly, your meals are a huge part of you eating healthy, but at first I had a lot trouble making it to meal time without feeling like I was starving. So make sure you have lots of healthy filling snacks to keep you full. For example, I usually buy almonds, walnuts, beef jerky, blue berries, carrots and hummus, or celery with almond butter. These snacks will be your lifesavers.
Even though you’ll make a variety of entrees, its always good to change things up and make sure that you are still treating yourself. In my case, I have really missed my sushi, so instead my fiancé and I have been buying some fresh salmon from Costco and making our own sashimi at home! We make some sticky rice, and then we bought all the gimmicks for it (like soy sauce, wasabi, and ginger). You might be thinking wow that sounds risky, but after doing a lot of research it turns out that its actually pretty safe if you get the Atlantic farmed salmon. In order to make it 100% safe, we will freeze the salmon once we get home and then use it the next day or whenever you want. For the sticky rice, we just get sushi rice from our local asian food market and then make it in the rice maker. Once its done cooking, we mix in rice wine, sugar, and sesame oil. We’ve found that the best way to make your nigiri is using Saran Wrap . You put your little bit of rice, add a little tiny bit of wasabi, and then your piece of fish. Then you wrap the saran wrap around it and tighten it, then you’ll have a great piece of nigiri, and then dip in soy sauce, hoison, or sriracha! If you want you can also make this nigiri recipe with tuna , scallops, or shrimp and its actually less risky than salmon (salmon tends to be the riskiest of the fish).
Also don’t be afraid to still have a cheat day and enjoy a donut here and there. It’s all about moderation with this. If you go cold turkey and you never have any of the good ole bad stuff you used to indulge in you’ll see that you will break easier than if you treat yourself here and there. Just make sure that you keep the workout routine and you will be golden. Lastly, if your state is open for take out or dine in please make sure that you are supporting local business or black owned businesses . It’s a pretty crazy time in our country, and now more than ever we need to have each others back.