Friday, October 21, 2016

Homemade Chicken with Brown Rice Ramen

I wanted to create a simple ramen noodle soup, that could be made quickly, with ingredients on hand. I got inspired after I scored a bag of Lotus foods Brown Rice Ramen at Costco's and I love a "soup meal" and slurpy noodles! 
I opted for chicken instead of pork, but kept the rest of the ramen vibe somewhat traditional: a killer chicken soup base with garlic, ginger, mushrooms and coconut amino's, filled with squiggly ramen noodles and slices of succulent chicken, and topped with fresh spring onions and a soft-boiled egg.
My version is on the table in less than an hour – and half that if you opt for store-bought chicken – and while it might not be completely authentic, it’s a flavorful, comforting soup just in time for the unmistakably crisp, chilly autumn weather and rain lately  October has ushered in here in Pittsburgh!! 
Homemade Chicken with Brown Rice Ramen

Yield: 2 Servings

  • 2 chicken breasts (boneless) 
  • kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to season
  • 3 tsp Coconut oil *good for high heat! (Olive oil could work)
  • 2 tsp sesame or vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 3 tsp fresh garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp Coconut aminos (or low-sodium soy sauce) 
  • 2 tbsp mirin a rice cooking wine. (I used rice vinegar)
  • 4 cups organic low sodium chicken stock
  • 2 oz dried shiitake mushrooms (or 1 to 2 cup fresh I love Mushrooms!) 
  • 1-2 tsp sea salt, to taste
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup scallions, sliced
  • 2 (3 oz) packs dried brown rice ramen noodles ( I used Lotus Foods Brand from Costco's)
  • optional: Any fresh herbs or fresh jalapeño slices, for serving

  1. Cook the chicken*: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Season the chicken generously with salt and pepper. Melt the coconut oil in a large oven-safe skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken, about 5-7 minutes. Flip the chicken over and cook for another 4-5 minutes, until golden. Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast for 15-20 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Remove from the oven, transfer the chicken to a plate and cover with foil until ready to serve.
  2. Make the ramen broth: Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat, until shimmering. Add the garlic and ginger, and cook for a few minutes until softened. Add the soy sauce and mirin or rice vinegar, and stir to combine. Cook for another minute. Add the stock, cover, and bring to boil. Remove the lid, and let simmer uncovered for 5 minutes, then add the dried/fresh mushrooms. Simmer gently for another 10 minutes, and season with salt, to taste.
  3. Make the soft-boiled eggs: Fill a pot with enough water to cover the eggs, and bring to a boil. Gently lower the eggs (still cold from the fridge) into the boiling water, and let simmer for 7 minutes (for a slightly-runny yoke) or 8 minutes (for a soft, but set-up yoke).
  4. Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with ice water. When the timer finishes, transfer the eggs to the ice bath to stop the cooking process. Wait at least 5 minutes, or until cool enough to handle, then carefully peel away the shell and slice in half, lengthwise. Set aside until ready to serve.
  5. Assemble the ramen bowls: Meanwhile, chop the scallions and jalapeño/herbs (if using). Slice the chicken into thin pieces. Set aside. When the eggs finish cooking, add the ramen noodles to the boiling water. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until soft, then divide the noodles into two large bowls. Add the sliced chicken and the ramen broth. 
  6. Top with the fresh scallions, jalapeño and the soft boiled egg. Serve immediately.
Lotus Foods Brand of Ramen from Costco's

I am following the color coded beachbody portioned containers so I tracked it by filling the cups as I added to my bowl: 

1 yellow cup filled with noodles, 1 red Cup sliced Chicken, 1/2 red 1 egg, 1 green cup with mushrooms and scallions, 2.5 teaspoons oils in broth/skillet, Chicken broth 1/2 red container *See NOTE 

So for 1 serving: 1 yellow, 2 red, 1 green, and 2.5 teaspoons 

* Note: Straight from  Autumn Calabrese
January 5, 2015 · 
It's cold out in most parts of the country and everyone wants to eat soup. A lot of people have been asking what chicken noodle soup counts as. Here it is.
If it’s the soup—with the chicken and the noodles—then one cup is 1/2 yellow and 1/2 red.
If it’s just the broth—no solids—2 cups is 1/2 a red container.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Core De Force Launch Group: Accepting Applications

I am so excited to announce that a brand new Beachbody home fitness program is going to be launched on the 31st of October!  Core De Force is a 30 day total body transformation program that will rock your world.  The best part about the program is that the only equipment you need is YOU! 

Core de Force Accountability group

 Core De Force is an MMA inspired program which includes 3 minute “rounds” where you will get boxing, kickboxing and Muay Thai, knee-elbow combinations, bodyweight training and cardio spikes that will help you lose belly fat and shred your body. 

 If you can focus on hitting it hard for 3 minutes at a time before you know it the workout will be over.  I have had the opportunity to do Core De Force as a preview to the release date.  This workout gets your heart rate up, it gets you sweating and I couldn’t believe how sore I was the next day.  I noticed that it really does focus on your entire core and getting your midsection defined, which of course is a woman’s top area to spot treat right!!!  

So check out all the details here if you are interested in changing up your workout, breaking a plateau, getting started with your transformation or holding yourself accountable over the holidays.  

I am going to be hosting a private test group 
for people who are ready to join me in this 30 day program.

Beachbody's New Workout 

What is Core De Force? 
Core De Force is your 30 day countdown to a total body transformation.  This workout was created by Joel Freeman and Jericho McMatthews, it is the ultimate mixed martial arts-inspired workout that is going to really knock off the belly fat, get rid of inches and tone and tighten your entire body with no equipment.
I love this workout because in every workout there is a “learn it & work it” section that breaks down the moves so that you can learn them before you do the workout.  So if you are new to the MMA style exercises this will give you confidence to go right in and kick some butt.  Core De Force is also not on a beat or rhythm so you do not have follow a specific routine per se.  There are modifiers in every single workout so no matter what your ability level is, you can go at your own pace.  As you get stronger the goal is to challenge yourself with higher intensity and increased focus.
I also like that there is no equipment needed except yourself.  This is key for those that are budget conscious, don’t have a lot of room to workout or are traveling and want to workout in a hotel room.

Core De Force takes the barriers away to getting started in your health and fitness journey because it is EASY, SIMPLE to follow and all you really have to do is show up and PRESS PLAY on the workout of the day!  My goal is to EMPOWER YOU AND GIVE YOU CONFIDENCE TO MAKE THE CHANGES NECESSARY SO THAT YOU CAN 

Core De Force Transformation Story
Who is Core De Force For? Core De Force is for EVERYONE.  Whether you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced level in your fitness you can do this workout.  You will enjoy the challenge of taking the intensity higher to improve your cardio strength, speed and endurance.  Each MMA inspired workout has an optional move breakdown to help you get familiar with the combinations.  There is also a “modifier track”  so you can follow a split screen if you would like as well.
Core De Force also focuses on rotational moves which means you will work your core from 360 degrees every time you hit play. That is going to be awesome for all of us who really want to tone that trouble area!
Core de Force Sample Meal Plan 

What Is the Eating Plan Like?  The nutrition guide was created to be simple, clean foods, that you can easily measure out and combine to give yourself a well balanced nutrition plan that will fuel your body with the energy it needs to crush the next workout on the schedule and get the results that you want.  If you really want to know what this program can do for your body make sure that you are 100% committed to the nutrition plan because what you eat is 80% of the results that you get.
The nutrition plan follows the portion fix, but you will not receive another set of containers unless you want them!  Each food category is measured out and explained in detail to you.  The plan is meant to be SUPER EASY to follow so that you don’t get overwhelmed with too many options.  Plus, in the test group I am hosting I am going to be walking you through the entire nutrition plan as well.
Core De Force 

How long are the workouts?  
The workouts are 30-45 minutes in length and you workout 6 days a week with a stretch on the 7th.  The workout program is 30 days in length.
There are 8 workouts in the program
MMA Speed- ∫ Upper body and core focused boxing influenced workout. (27 minutes)
MMA Shred- Muay Thai inspired elbow and kicks for total body shred. (37 minutes)
MMA Power- Uses explosive and defensive style movements in this fast paced cardio conditioning workout (47 minutes)
MMA Plyo- Core De Force is an MMA style home fitness program that will transform your entire body in 30 days.   When you combine boxing, Muay Thai and plyometrics in one workout you get a huge calorie burn and RESULTS. (47 minutes)
Power Sculpt- Total body burner that uses explosive power and interval training to lean and sculpt.  (37 minutes)
Dynamic Strength- Low on impact but high on intensity. (47 minutes)
Active Recovery- Recharge for the week ahead with this rest day that focuses on form and technique to help fight fatigue and sore muscles. (21 minutes)
Core De Force Relief- A quick 5 minutes stretch before bed session. (5 minutes)
Team Beachbody Exclusive MMA Mashup– All the best Core De Force moves in one workout.  (26 minutes)
Core Kinetics- A unique core workout inspired by Mixed Martial Arts movements.
5 minute Core on the Floor- the ultimate core finisher- 5 minute challenging plank movements that gets your abs on fire.
If you want to take your fitness to the next level after your 3o days you can get these 3 additional advanced workouts too:
Agility Strength- combines fast footwork drills with body weight resistance to help improve coordination and blast major calories.  (9 rounds- 37 minutes).
Agility Power- Grab your agility ladder and rip through multifunctional training that ignites every muscle and helps shred fat for serious definition (6 rounds-27 minutes).
MMA Kick Butt- This workout is meant to target your legs and butt with nonstop mix of powerful kicks and calorie burning conditioning spikes (9 rounds- 37 minutes).

When Can I Get This Workout?
Core De Force will be available on the 31st of October to customers of Team Beachbody coaches.  So if you do not have a coach right now make sure to sign up with me so that I can be your coach and guide you from start to finish through the program.  Here is your link to create your Free Team Beachbody Account.  Make sure that you complete the application below to be considered for a spot in my Core De Force Test Group so that you can also get the support and accountability to start and complete the program.  To complete the application click here:  Core De Force Application
Core de Force Challenge Pack 

How Much Does It Cost?
Core De Force has a variety of options.  The one that I recommend the most is the Core De Force Challenge Pack because it comes with everything you need to be successful with this program.  It comes with the entire Core De Force workout program, nutrition guide, program manual, Shakeology, access to me as your coach, discounted price and shipping plus it gives you entrance into my Test Group where I will be personally walking you through the nutrition guide, helping you to create a food plan that meets your needs, giving you recipes, tips, daily accountability so that this program does not become another dust collector on your shelf.
The Challenge Pack is $140 on Sale starting October 31st through November 2016.

Launch Group Participants will Also Receive:

** As a thank you to group participants, customer who purchase from a coach will receive Joel and Jericho's exclusive bonus workout, MMA Mash-Up a $19.95  FREE GIFT!

***Upon completion of the program each participant will receive a free t-shirt for submitting their results that could potentially win $500 or more!

Participant Expectations:

1. Participants will be expected to check in daily to our accountability group using the challenge group tracker app.

2. Participants will follow the workout schedule designed by Joel and Jericho for the 4 weeks of the program. (Additional workouts are ok to do as well!)

3. Tracking results is absolutely required!

4. Participants will be given a variety of recipes, meal ideas, and snack options, but will be expected to follow a meal plan designed to help them lose weight, shred fat, and build muscle. Meal plan options will be provided.

5. One meal a day will be replaced with nutrient dense Shakeology. Shakeology is a complete meal replacement that will be part of the included meal plans designed to help you optimize results. 
Want a FREE SNEAK PEEK of this Program Monday October 24th? 

How do I sign up?

1. Complete the enrollment form below to be added to the launch email list. You will receive an email update once you've submitted the application.

2. The program will be released on October 31st. Participants will receive a link to a discounted test group challenge pack which includes all the necessary workouts, meal plans, and challenge tracker account information needed for the test group. The only cost is that of the challenge pack. 

3. Refer a buddy to the challenge for a chance to win a one month supply of my favorite pre-workout, energize! It will help you bring the heat to this amazing workout. 

Refer a Friend to the Core de Force Group for a chance to win Energize

Connect with me on my Facebook Page to see even more details on the event and news and announcements:

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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

FIXATE ~Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Sticking to a healthy diet does not have to mean living a life without mac and cheese! Fall is here and COMFORT FOOD is calling!! 
This recipe is even more delicious than I imagined. It has less than 300 calories per serving and 15 grams of protein! The recipe makes 10 servings, so it can feed a hungry family or make several servings for healthy meal prep.
This recipe boasts two types of cheese – yes, real cheese! – sharp cheddar and Gruyere. The secret is using extra-flavorful cheeses, so a little bit goes a long way. They blend with a silky butternut squash puree to create an intensely flavorful sauce. I added peppers, onions, and a sprinkling of parsley to make the dish even more tasty and nutritious.
Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
Total Time: 1 hr. 16 min.
Prep Time: 15 min.
Cooking Time: 61 min.
Yield: 10 servings, about 1½ cups each
1 lb. dry whole wheat macaroni
1 tsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 medium red bell peppers, chopped
3 cups cubed butternut squash
1¾ cups low-sodium organic chicken broth
1 cup low-fat (1%) milk
2 Tbsp. low-fat (1%) plain Greek yogurt
1 cup shredded Gruyere (or Swiss) cheese
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Sea salt and ground black pepper (to taste; optional)
Nonstick cooking spray
Finely chopped fresh parsley (for garnish; optional)
1. Preheat oven to 375° F.
2. Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
3. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
4. Add onion and bell peppers; cook, stirring frequently, for 4 to 6 minutes, or until onion is translucent. Set aside.
5. Combine squash, broth, and milk in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium; gently boil for 22 to 25 minutes, or until squash is tender.
6. Place squash mixture in a blender or food processor; cover with lid and kitchen towel. Blend until smooth.
7. Combine squash mixture, macaroni, onion mixture, yogurt, and cheeses. Season with salt and pepper if desired; mix well.
8. Place macaroni mixture in a 13 x 9-inch ceramic or glass baking dish that has been coated with spray. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until sauce is bubbling.
9. Garnish with parsley if desired.
Tip: Blend small batches of hot liquids in blender or food processor since they expand during the blending process, therefore decreasing the chance of overflowing.
21 day Fix Serving 1 1/2 cup = 1/2 Green 2 Yellow 1 Blue 


Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Flank Steak Crock pot Fajitas!!

I am running a FREE Crock pot and Clean eating accountability group for existing customers and new contacts and I wanted to share our absolute favorite recipe!! 
When I make this (probably every other week) Brian gets so excited!! 

Here is the recipe:

1 1/2 lbs Flank steak
1 1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 medium onion
2-5 bell peppers (color of your choice)
100 percent whole wheat tortilla or I use Romain Lettuce as a Wrap
Shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
Shredded lettuce/spinach (optional)

Combine chili powder, cumin, coriander, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. 
Rub the spice mixture over the flank steak and place steak at the bottom of slow cooker.
Sprinkle the soy sauce on top of the steak. 
Top with diced jalapeno and minced garlic.
To top it off, add the sliced bell peppers and onion.

Turn the slow cooker on HIGH and cook for 5 1/2-6 hours. Steak should be easily shredded. 
Drain the meat and peppers well then serve on a 100% whole wheat tortilla with toppings of your choice.

This is perfect for those busy nights with little time to prep!!

You are going to get even more recipes in my group when you join! 

Monday, October 3, 2016

October Accountability Group!

There is a chill in the air and I already busted out the boots and jeans over the weekend here in PA!! 
So it is only fitting that OPERATION Skinny Jeans be the fun title of this accountability group!! 
I plan to boot scooting boogie my way into my skinny jeans doing another round of Country Heat! I honestly love this workout because IT DOESN'T FEEL LIKE A WORKOUT!! 
And for me that is LOVE!! 

My first round of Country Heat I was able to lose 11 pounds in 30 days!! I was amazed by the results and even following the modifier!! WOOT WOOT! 
For my Accountability group, I am keeping the workout optional there is a TON of great deals this month if you are looking for a place to start or just want to change it up with something new! 

Team Beachbody is offering customers and new Coaches a discount on:

Country Heat + Shakeology 
Country Heat Kickstart,
21 Day Fix + Shakeology
21 Day Fix Kickstart
21 Day Fix Extreme + Shakeology
21 Day Fix Extreme Kickstart
3-Day Refresh + Shakeology
CIZE + Shakeology
CIZE Kickstart
PiYo + Shakeology
PiYo Kickstart
22 Minute Hard Corps + Shakeology
22 Minute Hard Corps + Performance Challenge Pack
The Club (Beachbody On Demand) + Shakeology
Club Kickstart includes Portion Fix.

Message me for a FREE Consultation and I can get you to your goals!! 

Join me in my upcoming Challenge Group 
and let's help each other stay on track with our Goals TOGETHER!!! 

Here's what you will get:
 30-minute workouts from the privacy of your own home.
 Group Support from other like-minded people on the same journey as you
 Meal Prep, Nutrition, and Fitness Tips from me as your 1:1 Coach

NO this is NOT a Diet. It is a LIFESTYLE CHANGE.
Cheats and treats are allowed!
Everything in MODERATION!

Share this post with someone you know that is busy but might benefit from a program like this! 
They will thank you for it! 

Pre-season starts soon! Anyone who refers 3 friends who join, will get their program for FREE!

I will be hand selecting a group of people who are committed, dedicated and ready to make some changes in their health and fitness!  
So don't delay, spots will absolutely fill up fast.

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