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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Grilled Halibut with Tropical Salsa

Halibut Marinade
2 TB lime juice
1/4 C soya sauce
1 tsp dried maple flakes
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
Mix all the ingredients together and allow the fish to marinade for at least 30 mins. BBQ with the skin on over direct-high heat for 10-12 mins. If the skin has been removed, be sure to oil the grill very well and turn the fish only once. The more you mess around with it, the more it will fall apart!

Tropical Salsa
1/2 Medium Pineapple, finely diced
1 mango, finely diced
1/2 cucumber, finely diced
1 mini red pepper, finely diced
1 tsp sesame oil
1/4 tsp sea salt
jalapenos, to taste

This one's pretty simple: just mix everything together!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Grilled Lamb Mini Meatloaves

Step One: I bought a whole lamb leg, and ground it using the meat grinder attachment for my KitchenAid mixer. Because this was not a grass finished lamb, I trimmed off all the major chunks of fat and of course, removed the tough connective tissue. It's a little bit of extra work to grind your own meats, but well worth it, I think.

Lamb Meatloaf Recipe
2lb ground lamb
1 medium onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 TB Marjoram
1 TB Ground Rosemary
2 tsp kosher or sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Puree the onion in a food processor until it has the texture of apple sauce. Pour it out into the center of cheese cloth or a kitchen towel and wring out all the liquid. Pulse the ground lamb in the food processor to further soften its texture. Add the onion back in along with the rest of the spices. Process until thoroughly incorporated.

At this point you could shape this into a meatloaf and bake in the oven at 325F for about 1 hour. Once it's done, eat it warm or chill and slice for lunch meat.
I shaped the mixture into mini meatloaves and skewered into kabob form. Chill for at least an hour before placing on a well-oiled grill over medium heat.

Paleo Tzatziki
1/2 Cup Mayonnaise
1/2 cucumber
2 cloves of garlic
fresh dill

Shred the cumber with a fine rasp. You can mince the garlic and add it raw or roast it before hand for a sweeter flavor. Mush all the ingredients together and enjoy!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Coconut Curry Chicken with Cauliflower Rice

5-6 Chicken Breasts
Olive Oil
1 large sweet onion
2 cloves garlic
1 TB chili powder
1 TB curry powder
1 TB turmeric powder
1 tsp cumin
2 tomatoes,
roughly chopped
1/2 Cup chopped cilantro
1 can coconut milk (350-400ml)
Salt and pepper to taste

Slice the chicken into strips or small chunks. Heat the oil in a large pan to med-high. Saute the onions and garlic until they soften. Add the chicken and stirfry until cooked through. Add the spices and toss to coat the chicken is evenly. Add the tomatoes, cilantro, and coconut milk. Let it simmer for at least 5 min. If you have time, let it go for an hour or more to really intensify the flavors.
Normally a curry would be served over rice. An easy sub for the carb-o-rific, nutritionally void little grainy wonders is finely chopped cauliflower. I pulse it in the food processor until it's ground to about the texture of rice. Cauliflower is firm enough it won't turn into total mush. Warm it lightly in the microwave if you like or simply put your hot curry right over top which will cook it just enough.

Make Your Own Jerky

Drying was the original technique used to preserve meat for storage and transport in pre-agricultural times. In our modern world it still makes one of the best cavegirl snacks. Commercial jerky might help you survive an emergency hunger situation that lands you in a 7-11 hunting for something to eat, but it usually contains nitrites and other preservatives that make it not the best choice for everyday food. Made in your own kitchen with beautiful grass fed meat though, jerky is a delicious delight.

There are two tricks to making good jerky:

1) Choose lean cuts. The texture of fat is weird when dehydrated and it goes rancid quickly, defeating the "shelf stable" purpose of dried meat.

2) The marinade must contain both salt and some form of acid. This cures the meat before dehydrating and kills any bacteria.

The meat slicer in action!

My favorite for jerky is a bison eye round roast. There is a great bison farmer at the Farmer's Market that raises their animals on pasture. Their meat is also available at the Clarence Ave Market on Clarence and 12th Street. I use my meat slicer to get a uniform thickness, although this works best if the roast is still slightly frozen.

Original Jerky Recipe
1/4 Cup Water
1/4 Cup White Wine Vinegar
1/4 Cup Tomato Paste
1/4 Cup Worcestershire Sauce
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
2 TB raw honey
1 TB liquid smoke
1 TB onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp kosher or sea salt
1 tsp black pepper

Make sure each piece is coated in the marinade and then let it sit for 12-24 hours.

If you have a dehydrator, spread the meat on the racks and dry for 4-8 hours. Bison seems to dry much faster than beef so be sure to check on it every couple of hours. The meat should turn quite dark when finished but remain somewhat pliable. You don't want to dry it totally into dust!

Although I have never tried it, I've read you can use your oven to dehydrate jerky as well. Spread the meat out directly on the oven racks, set it to the lowest possible temperature (usually 160F), and leave the door slightly cracked.

Questions? Post them to comments!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Spicy Mango BBQ Sauce

Oh my god delicious, is all I have to say about this sauce. We brushed it on our Baby Back Rubbed ribs (the previous recipe) and it was amazing. I suspect it would also go well with grilled chicken or salmon.

1 TB extra-virgin olive oil
1 red onion, minced
1 red pepper, minced
0-3 fresh Habanero peppers*, minced
2 mangoes, peeled & cubed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup tamari soya sauce
2 TB Worcestershire sauce
1" piece ginger root
, peeled
1 orange, zested and juiced
1 lime, zested and juiced
1 TB honey
1 cup organic chicken stock

Heat the oil in a pan on med-high. Add the onion, red pepper, and habaneros and saute to soften (3 to 4 mins). Next add the mango and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the soy sauce, Worcestershire, the chunk of ginger, a little of the citrus zest, the honey, and the chicken stock. Cook the sauce for 10 minutes, then add the orange and lime juice, and simmer for 2 minutes more, to thicken. Remove the ginger chunk.

Allow the sauce to cool slightly before transferring to the blender or food processor to puree.

*I used 2 fresh habaneros which made a rather spicy, but tolerable sauce. Add more if you dare. If fresh hot peppers are unavailable, substitute 1-2 TBs of habanero hot sauce.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Baby Back Rub

Not that kind of back rub...

What could be more primal than tearing meat off a bone with your teeth? Ribs are a delicious part of the summer BBQ season, but are too often slathered with super sugary sauces. Here's my recipe for a gorgeous, flavorful dry rub.

2 TB Dark Brown Sugar
1 TB Paprika
2 tsp kosher or sea salt
2 tsp rosemary, crushed
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp cayenne pepper*
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp ground ginger
*adjust up or down based on your tolerance for spiciness

A little sugar goes a long way in this recipe, yielding enough to cover at least 2 and up to 4 racks of ribs. It works out to only a few grams of sugar per serving. The dry rub creates a flavorful crust and keeps you from messing up your shirt with sloppy sauces!

Coming up next: Spicy Mango BBQ Sauce

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Paleo Pizza

Pizza... a cacophony of wheat flour and cheese. It could never be paleo and you must therefore live without it forever, right? No way! Cavegirl in the kitchen to the rescue. This pizza recipe is decidedly grain free, and should be dairy free as well although caveman wasn't quite sold on that idea...

The Crust:

Per person..
1 Cup Almond Meal*
1 Whole Egg
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt

Beat the egg first then mush it all together to form a dough. Press it into a pan and bake first at 400 deg for 15-ish minutes or until it starts to brown. This was for two so I doubled the dough recipe.

UPDATE: Click here for the updated crust technique.

The Sauce:
1 small can tomato paste (preferably organic)
An equivalent amount of water
2 tsp oregano
2 tsp basil
drops of hot sauce
if you like a bit of kick

Anything you can imagine from the world of meats and veggies, nuts and seeds. Think chicken, bacon, avocados, artichokes, spinach, garlic, pesto, pineapple, peppers, jalapenos, tomatoes, and on and on.

* Almond meal is available in bags at Dad's Organic Market, but you could also make it yourself by pulsing almonds in a food processor or coffee grinder. Be careful not to grind too much or you will end up with almond butter. Although that would be a delicious mistake....

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Case For Real Mayonnaise

Lets do a little ingredient comparo here:
Real Mayonnaise: olive oil, egg yolks, white wine vinegar, salt, dry mustard powder, water

Miracle Whip Light: water, vinegar, soybean oil, modified food starch, high fructose corn syrup, sugar, salt, contains less than 2% of egg yolks, cellulose gel, mustard flour, artificial color, potassium sorbate as a preservative, xantham gum, cellulose gum, spice, paprika, sucralose, and acesulfame potassium (sweeteners), natural flavor, dried garlic

So we have one option consisting of a small selection of perfectly recognizable cavegirl ingredients. In the other corner, we have a frankenfood emulsification of industrial oil and modified food starch (whatever that is, I'm pretty sure it's not food). Oh and lets not forget the HFCS, the sugar, and not one, but two types of artificial sweeteners. Then there's the pile of preservatives and "natural" (???) flavor... oh my...
I will give you one guess which one is the better choice... [insert Jeopardy Music Here}

Julia Child's Mayonnaise Recipe

Round-bottomed, 2½ to 3-quart glazed pottery, glass or stainless steel mixing bowl. Set it in a heavy casserole or saucepan to keep it from slipping.
3 egg yolks
Large wire whisk
1 tablespoon wine vinegar or lemon juice (more drops as needed)
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon dry or prepared mustard
1½ to 2¼ cups of olive oil. If the oil is cold, heat it to tepid; and if you are a novice, use the minimum amount
2 tablespoons boiling water

1) Warm the bowl in hot water; dry it. Add the egg yolks and beat for 1 to 2 minutes until they are thick and sticky.
2) Add the vinegar or lemon juice, salt and mustard. Beat for 30 seconds more.
3) The egg yolks are now ready to receive the oil. While it goes in, drop by drop, you must not stop beating until the sauce has thickened. A speed of 2 strokes per second is fast enough. You can switch hands or switch directions, as long as you beat constantly.
4) Add the drops of oil with a teaspoon, or rest the lip of the bottle on the edge of the bowl. Keep your eye on the oil rather than on the sauce. Stop pouring and continue beating every 10 seconds or so, to be sure the egg yolks are absorbing the oil.
5) After 1/3 to 1/2 cup of oil has been incorporated, the sauce will thicken into a very heavy cream and the crisis of potential curdling is over. The beating arm may rest a moment. Then, beat in the remaining oil by 1 to 2 tablespoon dollops, blending it thoroughly after each addition.
6) When the sauce becomes too thick and stiff, beat in drops of vinegar or lemon juice to thin it out. Then continue with the oil.
7) Beat the boiling water into the sauce. This is an anti-curdling insurance. Season to taste.
8) If the sauce is not used immediately, scrape it into a small bowl and cover it tightly so a skin will not form on its surface.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Easy Guacamole

Don't be afraid of its green lumpy appearance, guacamole is a creamy delicious addition to your nutrition plan and avocados are cavegirl approved!
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 TB real mayonnaise
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp garlic power
  • chopped jalapenos (to taste)

Instructions: mush and eat.

Avocados were first redeemed from the "all fats are bad" trash bin when a study in 1996 demonstrated that a diet high in these creamy delights lowered total cholesterol by 17%, lowered the bad cholesterol (LDL) by 22%, lowered triglycerides (the more important indicator) by 22%, and increase the good cholesterol (HDL) by 11% - and all in just SEVEN DAYS! One easy week! That's it!

Yet another point in the mountain of evidence that real food is far more effective than any pill in creating long term health.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Banana Mac Sorbet

Smooth, sweet, and creamy this dessert is perfect for summer! The closer the fruits are to peak ripeness, the more flavorful it will be.

1 large banana
1 pear
1 avocado
1 TB raw honey
1 TB pineapple juice
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup chopped macadamia nuts

Blend all the ingredients, except the nuts, in a blender or food processor until smooth. Fold in the mac nuts and freeze the mixture. Scoop and enjoy like sorbet! It turns out quite green, but don't be afraid. Just think of it like pistachio ice cream.

This recipe is higher in carbs, so save it for special occasions. It makes a great way to enjoy a dessert while keeping yourself both grain and dairy free though!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Turkey and Shitaake Burgers

A flavorful, delicious burger that doesn't contain any grain-based "filler".

4lb ground turkey

1lb shitaake mushrooms (or any assortment of wild mushrooms)
1 medium onion
1 TB olive oil
2 tsp rosemary
1 tsp sage
1 tsp thyme

2 whole eggs

Roughly chop the mushrooms and onions, then saute in olive oil in a large pan. Sprinkle with the herbs and cook until the mushrooms are soft and the onions are translucent.

Transfer the mushroom and onion concoction to a blender or food processor and pulse until you have a paste. Put the 4lb of turkey in a large bowl and roll up your sleeves. Add the eggs and mushroom paste, and squish it all together with your bare hands until thoroughly incorporated.

Take a handful of meat, shape it into a ball, then squish into a patty and lay on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper. You can be precise and weigh each burger into exact portions if you like (6 oz makes a large burger).

Patties can be pan cooked, george forman-ed, or BBQ directly on the grill. They hold together best on the grill if they are slightly frozen though and be sure to oil the racks before cooking.

Friday, July 10, 2009

The Cavegirl Philosophy on Food

Human beings have roamed this planet for somewhere between 2 and 3 million years. Through an infinite series of adaptations, we evolved to thrive under certain conditions during the paleolithic era. At the dawn of the agricultural revolution, everything changed. The human diet changed from meats, leaves, nuts, and berries to seeds, grains, and dairy. Daily life changed from nomadic hunting and gathering to domesticated farming and agriculture. It started 10,000 years ago at the earliest and really took off about 5000 years ago. In terms of human existence, this is a mere blink of an eye and not enough time for us to adapt to our new environment. Human generations are long and we reproduce slowly. Genetically we are all still cavemen and cavewomen.

Worse yet, less than 100 years ago, pesticides, hormones, industrial vegetable oils, preservatives, artificial flavors, trans fats, and a host of other frankenfood ingredients were introduced to the human diet. It's death by 1000 nutritional cuts.

What we try to accomplish with the cavegirl philosophy is a "genetically congruent" lifestyle based on eating the foods available to our paleo ancestors and leaving out the modern additions. This means we eat meats and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, and little starch/sugar. Noticeably absent from the cavegirl diet are all grains, dairy, and legumes. The cavegirl menu is loaded with highly nutritious, quality food that is as close to its natural state as possible. We choose pastured or grass fed meats, buy (or catch!) wild fish, and opt for organic, local, and/or in-season produce. This diet is naturally much lower in carbs than the horrifying North American diet and high in quality proteins and fats. Health promoting, brain supporting, pro-heart fats.

Eating this way leads to positive gene expression, tilting your body towards health, longevity, and vitality. Caveguys and cavegirls were naturally lean and strong, without Jenny Craig, Special K, or a globo gym membership. A primal diet is the solution to most of the diseases of civilization like obesity, hypertension, heart disease, cancer, depression, crohn's, Alzheimer's, diabetes, gout, acne, and on and on. It's not that this diets protects against disease, as if we are somehow destined to be fat and sick. But rather, this diet doesn't cause those diseases in the first place. You are genetically programed to thrive, not suffer a slow, agonizing, humiliating decline to an eventual early grave.
My intention with this blog is to show that primal eating is not boring, bland, or impossible to achieve. Cavegirl food is delicious and flavorful, and easy to cook. It also leaves you feeling satiated and energized. No need to suffer through an agonizing, depriving low-cal, low-fat silly "diet". Not here. No thank you.
Pay Now, Live Later put together an excellent 5 minute video to explain precisely this philosophy on food.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Carnivore? Keep Being Awesome!

So now that we're done peering into the mundane details of my life, this blog will be devoted to the awesomeness that is the cavegirl lifestyle. I'll be posting updates from my kitchen experiments and hopefully keeping you inspired that primal food is flavorful, delicious, and satisfying. If you have any recipes, ideas, questions, or items you're really missing please send me an email ( and I'll be happy to see what I can whip up for you!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The End of Rehab

Okay, so the 30 days are up and that means it's time for a review. Lets compare the goals to the results. In the end I am 5lbs lighter than day one, but you've seen how much that fluctuates from day to day. The four areas to work on in this 30 day intensive were:

  • Caveman Food
  • Intermittent Fasting
  • CrossFit
  • Being My Own Car

Caveman Food

The original intention was to do all 30 days without cheating. That lasted, I believe, 13 days, so I have to give myself an F in the "no cheats" department. All in all though the intention was to reign in the cheat days and confine them to one or two meals per week, which we have successfully done. We had also been eating out a lot, relying on take out and processed foods way too much. I like cooking, so it doesn't take a huge effort for me to snuggle up with my cookbooks, reunite with my meat slicer, and get back to my post in the kitchen. I am lucky to have a great caveman as the other half of this team who cleans up after me in exchange for being well fed all the time. Thank you David!

On a side note, I like training barefoot and I spend a lot of time in the kitchen. Does that make me barefoot in the kitchen? Good thing I'm not pregnant or this would be really cliche...

Intermittent Fasting

In total I think we had 3 or possibly 4 days of intermittent fasting. I'll continue working it into my life, probably on every other rest day. I find it works especially well when I am feeling beat up, sore, and on the verge of getting sick. When your body needs to direct energy to repair and immune function, it's ok to give it a short break from the hard work of digesting food. Going without eating until dinner time really isn't the end of the world.


For the fitness side of things, this was a successful 30 days. Of the 21 WODs completed, all but one were new PRs. Among other things I got my first ring dip, something I thought I would never be functionally capable of doing. I PR'd my continuous pullups at 15, kick ass considering I had set a goal to get 12 in a row by the end of 2009. And I added 7lbs to my CrossFit total. My gymnastics, weight lifting, and cardio capacity all improved noticeably because I didn't just get stronger or just get faster, I got fitter. That's what CrossFit does to you! Several of the 21 WODs I had never done before and many of the other I was able to attack as Rx'd or at least closer to it than previous attempts. I even managed to beat my husband at a few! Even with my cheat days, eating cavegirl 80-90% of the time has resulted in some very satisfying gains on the performance side.

Being My Own Car

I'm still riding my bike to work as often as possible. I really enjoy the morning ride and I don't find this to be a chore at all. I'll be sad when winter creeps in and keeps my indoors, so I'll be appreciating the weather while it lasts.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Rehab Day 29

Weight 124.8

Breakfast was my standard fare - eggs and nuts, although I've added Salsa (oooooh!). Through the day I munched on several of the delicious creations that came out of the kitchen yesterday. I made bison jerky from a roast picked up at the farmer's market.
....and what's this?? Is that a paleo sandwich?! Indeed it is! David misses bread a lot because his favorite food is samiches. I've been experimenting with a recipe I found in a raw vegan cookbook involving sunflower seeds, flax, and onions. Although in my version I'd like to bake it since I have nothing against cooking my food. Cavegirl Onion Bread 1.0 was delicious, but way too labor intensive. I'll post the recipe when I've perfect the process!

Rest Day!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Rehab Day 28

Weight 125.6

Not much in the way of appetite today, as is usually case after a cheat day. Funny how it all evens out, isn't it? Mid-morning I ate one egg and the final italian sausage scrambled together with salsa and some avocado. Mid day I ate some trail mix and some left over meat.
For dinner I made grilled bacon wrapped pork tenderloin medallions and sweet potato and apple mash. David thrives on a little more carb than I do, on a day to day basis. So while he tucked into a big pile of starchy vitamin A, I filled my plate with spinach salad.

Pork wrapped in another kind of pork. Could there be anything better?

On the right, little pork yummies. On their sides on the grill to get the bacon extra crispy!

On the left, 1 Sweet potato with 1 apple, dusted with cinnamon. Baked at 350 F for 30 mins before being pureed in the food processor.

Cavegirl In The Kitchen
This blog is called just that because I eat and move as much like a cavegirl as I can but I love being in the modern oasis that is my kitchen. The paleo or primal lifestyle does not mean forsaking all neolithic amenities, donning a loin cloth, and spear hunting your dinner. With the seemingly endless options we have in terms of what to eat and do from minute to minute, being a cavegirl gives me a framework to navigate this world and helps to shape the choices I make. I keep my food "genetically congruent" with what my physiology is most supremely adapted to eat, while at the same time enjoying the fact that I don't have to risk life and limb to get it. A trip to Sobeys is all it takes. I exercise using functional movements at high intensity because those too are the physical remnants of a long-ago life built around sprinting, jumping, climbing, throwing, walking, lifting, and carrying. No need to sleep in a cave to actually get the benefit though. I'll keep my running water, comfy bed, and Nintendo Wii, thank you very much.

Some interesting things are coming out of my test kitchen these days and I'm looking forward to sharing the successful results in the coming weeks. I'll keep the disasters to myself though! Bison jerky, cavegirl bread, banana mac sorbet, and many other recipes will appear here in the future.
Today's WOD
Shoulder Press 1-1-1-1-1
Push Press 3-3-3-3-3
Push Jerk 5-5-5-5-5
This is the first time I have ever hacked out this entire WOD as Rx'd. I usually end up forgoing the sets of 3s and 5s, hitting only singles and then getting tired and quitting before I'm really done. So today...
Press: 86 Fail, 76, 81 Fail, 76, 76
Push Press: 86, 91(1PJ), 96, 101 Fail
Push Jerk: 101, 106f, 96, 96, 101x3
I love a good shoulder day...

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Rehab Day 27

Weight 123.8

For breakfast I had two eggs scrambled with 1 sausage, topped with 1/4 avocado and salsa. Yum! I hit up the farmer's market this morning for the first time in a while. I picked up a bison eye round roast, which will be turned into bison jerky later this week as well as some fresh BC cherries. I only just discovered the delicious wonder that is cherries last week and now I'm obsessed. I'm not sure how I managed to go my whole life without ever eating cherries before, but I have been missing out!

Before working out I had 1/2 apple with almond butter and some leftover pot roast. Usually I find as soon as I start warming up I get painfully hungry and that I can eat immediately before starting the stop watch. On this day though, eating right before this WOD seemed like a very, very awful idea since I started to feel nauseous almost immediately. After this serious ass kicking workout (see below) we hit Booster Juice for a little PWO refueling. Again I ordered a Mango Hurricane, no yogurt and added my own egg white powder to it. I get stuck in a rut with these things.

It's Saturday so that means it's time for a cheat. I made chicken fingers in the oven and David had pizza. We both had some cookies from Safeway for dessert. If you know me at all, you'll know I'm not much of a drinker and it's a rare occasion that I actually enjoying an adult beverage. It happens maybe once every few months. Tonight would be one of those nights. I enjoyed a few glasses of Kim Crawford Sauv Blanc while sitting out on the deck lounging in the summer loveliness. Perfect!

3 rounds for time
30 Squat Cleans, 65lbs (men's Rx'd 95lbs)
30 Pullups
800m Run
--> 40:25
I really wanted to finish this one is under 40 mins! Dammit. It annoys me to no end when this happens in a longer workout. Surely I could have shaved off 26 seconds somewhere in this whole endeavour! A few seconds here or there really doesn't matter, other than I just like the idea of a 3 at the beginning of my time rather than a 4. It's silly. I know. My rounds were 12 min, 15 min, and 13 min so I probably could have knocked off the time I needed by slacking less in round 2. I stopped though to cut off two callouses on my left hand that were starting to lift rather than suffer the pain of ripped hands again.
My winning streak continued as I beat David by about 7 mins. Once again my muscular stamina prevailed.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Rehab Day 26

Weight 125.4

For once I actually did not eat eggs for breakfast! I just didn't have time and ended up picking at some leftover Pad Thai before working out in the mid morning. I had another lovely berry, spinach, and egg white smoothie PWO. For a late lunch I had two egg scrambled with two italian sausages, half an avocado and salsa. 

For dinner I put a sirloin tip roast in the slow cooker. The recipe was very simple: 1 Cup beef broth, 1 medium can of tomato paste, an onion, a bay leaf, and a sprinkle of thyme. I browned the roast on all sides in a pan on the stove before letter it simmer on high in the crock pot for about 5 hours. Tender and delicious! ...oh, and EASY!

75 Power Snatches, 56lbs (men Rx'd weight 75lbs)
Any workout where I can beat David is a good one as far as I'm concerned! He's owned me in several WODs over the last week, but I finally made a comeback, beating him by over 2 1/2 minutes. In the 10 types of fitness, muscular stamina would be a strong area for me, so I tend to do better in high rep workouts like this.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Rehab Day 25

Weight 126.2

I'm sure you're very tired of reading that I eat the same thing for breakfast everyday by now. But let me offer that as one piece of advice: automate at least one meal per day. Make it easy, make it quick, and make it the same every day. It takes some of the stress out of opening the fridge, staring at a bunch of ingredients, and contemplating what you're going to eat. Not every meal has to be the most mind blowing experience for your taste buds. Sometimes food is just fuel.

Most of the day I ate leftover to try to make use of all the cooking I've been doing lately. The rest of the Shepherd's pie made a great lunch. Mid afternoon I used a couple of the remaining italian sausages from the failed kabob experiment the other night to make my own Denny's style scrambler. Eggs, sausage, peppers, and avocado topped with salsa. Awesome. This actually left me feeling quite full for the rest of the night and I didn't eat much of anything for dinner, opting instead for an early bed time.

Rest Day. Since we didn't do yesterday's 10k, this make 2 rest days in a row. Sometimes that's necessary. Rest and recovery is an oft neglected element for hardcore crazy fitness freaks.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Rehab Day 24

Weight 124.0

Nuts and eggs again, with a little ham in there for good measure. Through the day I ate some more ham, nuts, blueberries, cherries and some delicious left over pad thai. For dinner I turned some of the roast beef in the fridge into a cavegirl Shepherd's Pie. I actually found a ready to eat beef gravy at Sobeys which wasn't terrible. The ingredients were quite similar to anything I would have made at home: beef dripping, mushrooms, red wine, and some corn starch. I added loads of veggies and simmered on the stove. For the topping, I steamed cauliflower and a parsnip with a clove of garlic. Once softened, I pureed them in the food processor. It turned out to have a texture exactly like mashed potatoes and a mild, yet hearty flavor. Overall, yummy!

The picture doesn't quite do it justice...

David and I have been discussing how to incorporate cheat days into our lives a little more, shall we say, responsibly. The all-out, anything goes entire cheat day seems like too much. I end up feeling like crap for a day or two after, like a food hangover. As you've seen, I gain a lot of weight in a short period of time. Water weight or fat, it doesn't matter. 5lbs is 5lbs when you're trying to do a pullup! We go way beyond "refueling" to the point of performance sabotage. Plus I generally resent the idea that I willingly pump myself full of such processed, garbage food-like substances.

So we're experimenting with this: Two cheat items per week, one on Wednesday, one on Saturday, preferably home made. We eat pretty low carb the rest of the time, so this approach is essentially a cyclic low carb/high carb diet a la Mauro DiPasquale's Anabolic Diet. I have not read any of his books, but from what I've gleaned from articles and interviews this is essentially his approach. Far be it for me to put words in his mouth though, so check out his website if you're curious about what he does.

Anyway, last night David chose sandwiches as his cheat - one roast beef, one peanut butter and jam. For me, I made a tiny batch of brownies. Mmmm.... Better than anything I could have found in a store!

Today's WOD
Run 10k

As my gimpy foot is not up to running I did not attack this one today. I'm not one to skip workouts or cherry pick the ones I like, so I will complete this one as soon as I can, hopefully on the weekend. I had intentions of subbing in something else, but ended up just feeling too wiped out from Eva yesterday. My own programming ended up being "One Nap, for Time" - Total time: about 3 hours! Precious precious sleep....