Sunday, October 16, 2016

Weekend Timestamp

Good morning and happy Monday! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. I just wanted to share a quick recap with some “timestamps” from ours. Here we go!


9:53 AM: Partner workout at Salt Shack CrossFit complete! It was a good one for sure. My partner and I split up the reps evenly. And, whoa, my shoulders are sore from the rope climbs. I haven’t done them in awhile!

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10:20 AM: Donut date with my favorite little buddy at Coffee Shack. I look forward to our “no-nut” dates so much.

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10:37 AM: Grocery shopping with Qman. We scored the super cool car shopping cart! 🙂

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10:48 AM: Eggnog?! No, no, no. I love eggnog, but it’s wayyyyyyy too soon.

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2:53 PM: A woodpecker paid us a visit. Ugh. I’ve heard they can be really destructive. If you have any advice for dealing with them, please send it our way!

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4:36 PM: We head to our friends’ house for a “fall fun” get-together.

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5:22 PM: Wine time for the moms!

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5:49 PM: Pizza time!

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6:01 PM: Bonfire time!

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6:25 PM: Dessert time! I made Rice Crispy Treats with Chocolate Cheerios, mini chocolate chips, and candy corn mixed in. A friend made homemade pumpkin whoopie pies, which were absolutely phenomenal!

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6:39 PM: Finding Nemo.

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8:14 PM: I got home and chowed down on Vegan “Cheese” Kale Chips. They’re so friggin’ good and really nutritious with 7 grams of protein per serving, Vitamin A 60% DV, Vitamin C 40%, Calcium 7%, and Iron 12%.

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6:40 AM: Morning snuggles with Qman.

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7:12 AM: Blanket fort!!!

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7:37 AM: On my way to meet a friend for a long run.

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10:19 AM: Post-run snack: Coconut Greek yogurt with goji berries, hemp hearts, and walnuts.

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12:42 PM: We have friends over for the Patriot’s game, and I cannot stop eating these pita chips from Trader Joe’s. My gosh, they are addictive!

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2:09 PM: Fed & Fit’s BBQ Chicken Potato Casserole! So easy, so delicious, and everyone loved it!

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3:23 PM: We’re so glad Dada didn’t throw away this box and its packing peanuts!

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7:52 PM: Qman is in bed and Mal is out for the night, so I sit down and enjoy some of my Mom’s Apple Crisp with vanilla bean Halo Top. Mmm! #pugcreep


Questions of the Day

Do you have any weekend traditions? 

Any advice for getting rid of woodpeckers?

Is it too early for eggnog?

P.S. Be sure to enter our giveaway to win a 4-week custom meal plan from Designed to Fit Nutrition! We’ll pick a winner later this week!

from Carrots 'N' Cake

Weekend Link Love – Edition 422

weekend_linklove in-lineElle Russ had a great chat with Dave Asprey. Good stuff.

It’s the last week to grab some free bonuses with your copy of Primal Blueprint Publishing’s newest title, The Paleo Primer: A Second Helping

Research of the Week

American kids are among the world’s least fit.

Staying physically and mentally active reduces cognitive decline.

Tech rage“: Americans are apparently throwing, sobbing into, and screaming at their smartphones on a regular basis.

Humans truly are domesticated.

New Primal Blueprint Podcasts


Episode 138: Elizabeth Resnick: Host Elle Russ hangs out with former MDA success story about her transition from a vegan diet, how going Primal helped her skin, digestive, and anxiety issues, and how the shift has changed her life.

Each week, select Mark’s Daily Apple blog posts are prepared as Primal Blueprint Podcasts. Need to catch up on reading, but don’t have the time? Prefer to listen to articles while on the go? Check out the new blog post podcasts below, and subscribe to the Primal Blueprint Podcast here so you never miss an episode.

Interesting Blog Posts

Eating 3-4 egg yolks a day could improve your blood lipids and reduce liver and belly fat, if this rat study is to be believed.

Soylent stops selling its food replacement bars after customers complained of nausea and vomiting.

Warming up, or learning up?

Media, Schmedia

In an exceedingly safe world, the biggest danger children face is the moralizing stranger.

A Silicon Valley techie wants to reduce smartphone addiction despite working in an industry that depends on it for growth. Can he succeed?

Big Soda has pumped big money into major health organizations to suppress information about the health effects of sugar consumption.

Everything Else

When automation fails, we’re not always ready to assume control.

Man, I want to see what this guy can do on a Bosu ball.

Zuck hunts.

In the future, electronic cutlery will make your broccoli taste like chocolate. Gross.

Did primate evolution begin in India?

A new lawsuit claims Pepsi’s Naked Juice isn’t actually healthy.

A vegan tourist arrives in New Zealand, discovers they have sheep, is triggered.

The whole world is in your lap.”

Gluten-free has really come a long way.

And now, bears playing with balloons.

Things I’m Up to and Interested In

Deal of the week: I’ve partnered with Dry Farm Wines to give you a fantastic deal on some truly Primal-approved wines.

Product I’m excited about: Purple sweet potatoes have reappeared at Whole Foods.

A quote I found helpful, particularly given the current political/media climate: “Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.”—Marcus Aurelius.

The blog post that most piqued my interest: “The Secret Life of Trees”—Another tree article? Yep. As you read, consider the dichotomy between the organic, bottoms-up nature of tree community support systems and the government-ordained, top-down system we have. Which is more Primal?

My favorite fun (and also mindblowing) fact of the week: The universe contains 10 times more galaxies than previously thought (PDF).

Recipe Corner

Time Capsule

One year ago (Oct 16 – Oct 22)

Comment of the Week

“My favorite oil is melted butter”

– Great choice, wildgrok.


The post Weekend Link Love – Edition 422 appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.

from Mark's Daily Apple

Q&A with Chef Virginia Willis, Author of Lighten Up, Y’all

Think Southern food can’t be lightened up? Think again! I had the opportunity to speak with Chef Virginia Willis about her James Beard Award-winning cookbook Lighten Up, Y’all. She was kind enough to share her tips for lightening up traditional Southern foods like biscuits, as well as her recipe for Vegetable Corn Bread.

Can traditional Southern foods be lightened up and still taste good?
Virginia Willis: Yes and yes! First, and foremost, I want to say that all traditional Southern foods aren’t unhealthy. We’re a vegetable-based cuisine and have a 12-month growing season. And, yes, I admit we’re most famous for fried chicken, cornbread and overcooked vegetables. My answer to that is: When you have fried chicken, have really good fried chicken, hold out for the good stuff  — and take a walk afterwards. There are tons of great vegetable recipes, and whole-grain cornbread isn’t unhealthy. I suggest backing off on the fat and amping up the nutrition.

What are three of your top tips for lightening up Southern fare?
VW: 1) I have a squirt bottle of canola oil at the side of my cooktop. I know that three squirts are 1 teaspoon, and that helps me be accountable. Bacon fat, butter or canola oil, all oil is around 120 calories a tablespoon. I try to use heart-healthy oil for general cooking and only use more-indulgent oils when their flavor really makes a difference.
2) It doesn’t matter if it’s Southern food or Italian food or Mexican food — the real key is portion control.
3) Eat your vegetables! Make vegetables the main place on the plate, and the starch and protein the secondary piece.

In your cookbook Lighten Up, Y’all, you talk about cooking fats for a healthy Southern kitchen. Could you tell us what you prefer as your top cooking fats?
VW: In general, I use expeller-pressed organic canola oil for most of my cooking. I use olive oil when it can contribute to the flavor of a dish.

But, you know, there’s nothing that tastes like butter. For example, when I was working on the right-side-up pineapple cake, nothing would replace the flavor of butter. I try to use it judiciously, so for example, I manipulate the baking recipe and replace half the butter with canola, but still keep the flavor of the butter.

Is there a particular Southern classic that you found especially difficult to lighten up? How did you end up lightening it up?
VW: The baked goods were the most difficult. I’m pretty proud of the biscuit recipe — whole-wheat, whole-grain biscuits made with part canola and part butter. I say in the headnote it’s not health food, but it’s pretty darn good, and better for you than a typical biscuit.

Please share a favorite seasonal recipe from your cookbook.
VW: A fun way to get your vegetables in is cornbread! The suggested vegetables here are just that, a gentle suggestion. You can mix it up depending on what’s in season and fresh at the market. This recipe will support about five cups of chopped vegetables. Any more and the batter doesn’t hold together very well, and any less, it’s not really vegetable corn bread. I like to use variety of chiles and leave the seeds in the rings to give the corn bread some kick, but you could remove them or try chopped zucchini, yellow squash, or eggplant. If you use these more watery vegetables, you should parcook them first to remove some of the moisture (this could be as simple as zapping in the microwave and draining off the excess water).

Vegetable Corn Bread
Serves: 8

2 tablespoons canola oil
2 cups yellow whole-grain cornmeal
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
6 fresh okra pods, stem ends trimmed, very thinly sliced
(about 1 cup)
1 red onion, chopped
Cut and scraped kernels from 2 ears of fresh corn, cut from the cob (about 1 cup)
1 banana pepper, thinly sliced into rings
1 jalapeno chile, thinly sliced into rings
1 small red chile, such as bird’s eye or Thai, thinly sliced into rings
1/2 poblano chile, cored, seeded, and chopped
2 cups low-fat buttermilk
1 large egg, lightly beaten

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Place the oil in a large cast-iron skillet or ovenproof baking dish and heat in the oven until the oil is piping hot, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the cornmeal, salt, and baking soda. Add the okra, onion, corn, banana pepper, and chiles and toss to coat. Set aside. In a large measuring cup, combine the buttermilk and egg. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir to combine.

Remove the heated skillet from the oven and pour the hot oil into the batter. Stir to combine, and then pour the batter back into the hot skillet. Bake until golden brown, about 35 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool slightly. Using a serrated knife, slice into wedges and serve warm.

Per serving: Calories 208; Fat 6 g; Carbohydrate 33 g; Fiber 6 g; Protein 6 g

Reprinted with permission from Lighten Up, Y’all by Virginia Willis © 2015. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Penguin Random House, Inc. Photography © 2015 by Angie Mosier. For more information, please visit

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. She is the author of The Greek Yogurt Kitchen: More Than 130 Delicious, Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Day.

from Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy...

Fall Half Marathon Training: Week 6

Hi, guys! Happy Sunday!

Another week of half marathon training is in the books, and it was a good one for sure. I tackled 12 miles and then fit in two runs and two CrossFit workouts. Woohoo! I can’t say I feel totally ready for race day, but I’m hoping after a long run today and another one next week, I’ll feel confident in conquering 13.1 miles!


MONDAY: 12 miles

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WEDNESDAY: 5.23 miles


THURSDAY: 3.26 miles

FRIDAY: CrossFit


SATURDAY: CrossFit (partner workout) 


Fall Half Marathon Training: Week 5

Fall Half Marathon Training: Week 4

Fall Half Marathon Training: Week 3

Fall Half Marathon Training: Week 2

Fall Half Marathon Training: Week 1

from Carrots 'N' Cake

Clean Eating Pumpkin Spice Ghost Snacks Recipe

Clean Eating Pumpkin Spice Ghost Snacks Recipe

These easy and delicious snacks are perfect for the kid in all of us!

Searching for a healthier Halloween treat this season? Look no further! These lovely little ghosts will give you the energy you… Read more →

from The Gracious Pantry