Today is Friday. Last day of the week, and last day before cheat day. It’s an important day, because I have to always attempt to finish strong going into a Cheat Day. Otherwise, I feel miserable about the Cheat Day, especially if I haven’t earned those ‘fast’ carbs. I think based on the work today at the ole’ Boot Camp, I earned at least a slice of bread.
What can you do in three minutes? You’re probably thinking not a whole lot. I can make microwave popcorn. Pay a few on-line bills. Watch the latest and greatest cat video a few times. I now know that you can do the following in three minutes: high knees, jumping jacks, side jumps, stutter steps, diving push ups, spazzies. Yep, we took six intense fast twitch exercises in 30 second intervals and smashed them all together. The results? SWEAT, lots of SWEAT! SWEAT POURING down my face. We did the ‘cycle’ about six or eight times. It was really rough given the high humidity today. Around cycle four I started to really feel burnt, but you carry on as best you can. If you can get through a boot camp without barfing… it’s a win!
I’m on a roll this week with fitness, and so despite Traffic attempting to deter my arrival to Boot Camp, I pushed through it and arrived to find we were doing a leg work out that mixed weighted movements with cardio movements. However, as we progressed, I quickly realized that everything was either a squat variation or a lunge variation. And so in my head I butchered a line from Indiana Jones, “Lunges, why did it have to be Lunges?”
The Lunges weren’t really the issue as much as the humidity and the bugs today. I was forced to practice solid breathing technique because if I took too deep a breath I ate a bug. Now, that was fun. Humidity and Heat have been an issue for several weeks. It’s either that or i’m going through ‘The Change’ because I am sweating like Shawn Michaels at the end of his Iron Man Match with Bret Hart at Wrestlemania. It’s now comical the amount of moisture leaving my body when I work out.
But exercise is good. Today was good, despite being a bit short. And in the end I didn’t have to worry about a recovery protein shake because I was able to eat 7 bugs during the workout. Hurray!
Every Slow Carber will tell you. It gets old eating Beans! So, new recipes for beans are a treasure. Recently necessity forced me to come up with a new recipe for beans and I am hoping you enjoy it as much as I do.
Blistered Beans is a term I came up with for something different than refried or stewed beans. The result are flavorful beans with a new texture profile. Here is what you will need.
1. Two Cans of Pinto Beans (organic preferred)
2. Medium Sized White Onion Chopped
3. 1 teaspoon of cumin
4. 1 teaspoon of salt
5. 1 teaspoon of paprika
6. Your favorite cooking fat (olive oil or macadamia oil).
Here is how you make them. First, heat a pan and oil and drop in the onions. Let them soften and start to brown. Next, rinse your beans in a colander and drain. Try to get them a little dry. We do not want mushy beans. Next drop I your beans. They will start to pop and snap a bit. That is okay. Add all the seasoning and spices now. Stir the beans and let them sit until the skin of the beans starts to blister. Turn frequently and that is it!
I usually cook up a batch for the week, and if I use more than 2 cans of beans I appropriately adjust the spice ratio. I find they keep for 4 – 5 days. ENJOY!
This past Friday at Bootcamp, I had a sneaking feeling we would do some running. I have to be honest. I have not jogged (depsite threatening to) for several months now. So, when I saw Brook and a fellow camper (small group) jogging as I drove up to the new site, I knew I was going to be running. We ended up jogging about a mile, and I think I did about 3/4 to 1/2 a mile. It was odd to run again. I was dreading it due to the time off, but the reality was my body bounced bag reasonably well. My low back (site of my old injury) did not tighten up, which is a good sign my core has remained fairly strong in the past year. I was still slow as hell o the jog, but I was able to push through without giving up at a walk. If I’m able, I may try and do a jog this Sunday evening after dinner has settled.
The rest of our work out was fairly intense. There was a lot of carry over upper body and core exercises. After the Thursday Bootcamp (Boxing) The most difficult was a 3 minute phase to close out the work out. We did step ups onto a bench with Push Ups inbetween each step up. It was really pretty rough. After the first minute I thought my legs were going to give out, but I pushed through.
This session wrapped up an OK week. It wasn’t great. I didn’t lose any weight this week and only squeezed in two solid work outs at boot camp. I did some casual swimming, but for the most part I need to pick up the intensity for this next week.
It was a Thursday and I was late due to traffic, but I jumped right in due to the fact that I showed up and my trainer pointed and yelled. And so we punched away. The difference from this bag class from others was the sets of exercises we did while waiting for our turn to punch. Also a lot of the punching was done to exhaustion which is always a challenge. It was a really tough work out. Which why I always say, combat athletes are incredibly well rounded athletes. You have robe, cause your probability for injury is so high.
The Heat has been rough in So-Cal for the past three weeks, and this weekend was no exception with temps in the 90’s. This has also made outdoor cardio challenging at least for me. Knowing I wanted to have some cardio work without nearly dying on the pavement, I decided to make use of the pool and do some laps.
During this process I actually put into practice the technique that Tim Ferris discussed in his book for the free-style stroke, and I found myself really moving along in the water. 10 laps later, and I was feeling good and pumped up, so I did another 20 laps alternating the back stroke and breath stroke. It was one way to get my cardio in without over-heating the engine.
The Day after a Cheat Day is tricky. I’ve been doing this diet for long enough to realize that the re-start day is about as crucial to the end week results as drinking lots of water. I argue this because depending on your ’emotional’ state the day after the Cheat Day can easily become… well… just another cheat day.
This happened to me a lot after the first SLOW CARB surge ended last year. Weekly stress was on the rise, and the need for relaxation and comfort on the weekend often over-ruled my over-all goal to become a more healthy person. In fact, most of the last year was something of that shade of gray. However, in the last month I’ve had a turn around and over-all better commitment to my fitness and stress management.
Re-Start Day for me is Sunday. This often means waking up from a Cheat Day coma and the fog of breads, sugars, and fried things… to organic eggs, beans and black coffee. However, one thing that has made me look forward to the Re-Start Day is making the evening meal an EVENT as much as the Cheat Day is an event. The photo above is our Slow Carb Feast for Sunday. Grilled Herb Smoked Rock Fish, Grilled Japanese Squash, Grilled Rosemary Lemon Chicken, Blistered Pinto Beans and some Her Infused Quinoa. The later was for my wife. Sounds, good, Right?
And that’s because Re-Start day starts with the very intentional trip to the Grocery Store and Meal discussion for the week. I think this process is really helpful for me. We tend to hit a Whole Foods or Sprouts, so my wife and I discuss some of the choices and I get ‘excited’ about the wonderful healthy produce we’re going to eat instead of ‘dreading’ the return to proteins, lentils, beans and veggies. This ritual helps secure my focus on Sunday and this helps solidify the commitment for the week. Hence, the Re-Start Day is just as key for me as anything from a psychological or emotional perspective.
How do you ring in the start of your weekly Slow-Carb, Fit for Life or Paleo lifestyle? What are your tricks and tips?