Sunday, August 26, 2012

90 Days to Sexy Challenge Rules

All 90 day workout programs must be Beachbody programs. If you want a challenge to work yourself up to running a half marathon, there are plenty out there but this is not one of those. I am qualified to coach Beachbody programs. I am not qualified to coach a Jillian Michaels workout or TapOut XT. Just want to start with that so we’re all on the same page.

You must have a 90 day plan – AHEAD OF TIME! Preparation is an important ingredient to reaching your goals. You may be in the middle of Phase 2 of P90X when August 27th arrives. That doesn’t mean you cannot participate, it means that when you hit the last day of Phase 3 recovery week, know what you’re going to be starting the following Monday. Have Insanity or Turbo Fire or another round of P90X ready to go.

You must have a Facebook account.  We check in through Facebook, it makes it easy and accessible to everyone. You can check in on your phone if you can’t get to a computer!
You must check in and post your accountability to the group everyday.  If you miss 2 days, you’re out of the challenge and the group.

You must make a plan to follow the nutrition guide of your program as closely as possible. That’s why these programs have nutrition plans – eating is half of what gives you the results. If you cannot afford the whole menu, pick a couple of days or just one day out of the week.   Don’t like a meal? Swap it out with a different one. Don’t like the dinners? Double the lunches. Don’t have time to cook? Prep all of your meals ahead of time on Sunday afternoon.  But please be prepared to follow the plan that comes with the program as closely as you can.

I don’t want anyone skipping recovery week. Recovery is where our bodies start to show us how we’re getting better. You skip it, you skip the chance to actually ‘see’ what’s happening to you.
“Before” pics are mandatory!!!

Every week, we will be exploring different weight loss/fitness tools to help reach our goals through weekly challenges.  One of these will be a HIIT workout. Please prepare for this ahead of time. One great HIIT option is Turbo Fire’s Greatest HIIT’s workout DVD which can be bought separately from Turbo Fire here:
You must have an account with or or have another plan for logging what you eat. Even when following a nutrition plan, it can be easy to lose track of what you put in your mouth unless you log it.

To participate in this challenge, I must be your assigned Team Beachbody coach. You may do this by signing up under my and clicking ‘join’ for a free membership. If you currently have a Team Beachbody account, you may also do this by emailing and asking them to set your coach to TurboRachel, coach ID 128848.

Please note – you may have been invited to this challenge by one of the coaches on my team! Please let me know in an email ( the name of the coach who invited you.  If you’ve been invited by a Team Athena coach, disregard rule 9. If you ARE a Team Athena coach, check in with me please!

To RSVP to this challenge if you’d like to join, please email me at with the subject “90 Days to Sexy”.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Turbo Fire May Challenge Group! WADDUP!

I  love Turbo Fire.  You know why?  I'll tell ya.  The music rocks, Chalene is awesome and you burn so many more calories with the fire drills that if you happen to goof on the meal plan, it don't stick. Word up.  So, starting May 7th, I'm going to help you get through it too.
Welcome to my Turbo Fire Fat Blasting Challenge!  Wear black and let's have a funeral for your fat!

Here are the rules:
  1. You must have an account on and I must be your coach.  If you haven't made an account, you may do so by going to and clicking "join."  A basic free membership will do.  If you are a member and have a different coach, please email and ask them to set your coach as TurboRachel, coach ID 128848.  Thank you!
  2. Challenge packs aren't required, but having Shakeology in your court does help.  If you need/want a challenge pack, check 'em out here:  Challenge packs get you a 30 day supply of Shakeology, the Turbo Fire program and 30 days VIP access to the message boards where you can get free workouts, a meal planner and you get in on live chats with the trainers which is pretty sweet.
  3. Turbo Fire by itself can be purchased here:  
  4. You may notice that Amazon has Turbo Fire for slightly less $$.  You know why it's cheaper?  It's the old version of the program and if you do it, you won't get Fire Starter and you'll be doing a totally different schedule.  Also, in the event your discs get scratched up, Team Beachbody won't replace them for free.  You'll have to buy new ones.  And them discs DO get scratched up after a while!  Also, when you buy from Beachbody (different than Team Beachbody unfortunately), Amazon or Ebay, you miss out on getting bonus workouts and I won't be able to send you a free Turbo Fire waterbottle when this challenge is up.  Boooooo.
  5. ACCOUNTABILITY IS MANDATORY!  This challenge is centered in my Facebook group which is secret so your friends can't see your posts or even that you're in there.  Post about what you ate, what you wish you could have ate, how your workout went, any struggles or questions you have with diet or exercise.  Just make sure you check in EVERY SINGLE DAY! This is how we stay on track and the support we can give each other is one of the best motivational tools you can get.
  6. Chalene Johnson devised a nutrition plan and calorie calculator for this program for a reason.  You MUST EAT ENOUGH to get the results you want out of this.  Every turbo move is designed to not just burn calories but to sculpt muscles.  If you don't feed muscles, they aren't going to burn fat for you.  You want those fire drills revving your metabolism up so that means eat!  Even better - eat what she tells you to eat in the nutrition guide.  Those recipes are actually really good!  I kid you not!  :)
  7. Do not feel pressured to jump!  You can follow Alee and get an equally good workout, you just have to push yourself and keep your intensity level up!  You get out of this what you put into this.
  8. If you are struggling with a move and need it broken down, speak up!  I am a certified Turbo instructor and am more than happy to provide a video break down of different moves.  
  9. Give each workout 3 chances before you get totally flustered.  The choreography can seem fast, I know.  Believe me, I know.  But you WILL pick this up before you know it.  If I can do this at 300 lb, anyone can do it.  Fo'real. 
  10. Take a before pic!  When you're done with the 90 or 120 days (if you decide to do the advanced classses) submit that pic with your after photo to the Beachbody Challenge and you get a free tank top!  Just be aware - they run 1 size bigger.  Unless you have big boobs - then they are true to size.  Your before pic is a great motivational tool.  Especially if you put it in places where you're forced to look at it.  Don't want to workout?  Look at yourself in your underwear.  It works!!!
This is the water bottle I'm talking about:

Friday, March 9, 2012

Shakeology Cleanse

To order or for more information, click here:

Shakeology is a daily nutritional shake helps your body gently eliminate toxins more efficiently while allowing for better absorption of the essential nutrients you need.  The combination of nutrients, digestive enzymes and prebiotics helps your body eliminate toxins that build up from eating processed foods.  Shakeology is also packed full of vitamins and minerals that help your body curb cravings, perform well during exercise, and shed fat.  

With the 3 day Shakeology Cleanse, you can detox your body faster and speed up visible results.  Maintain a clean diet based on whole foods after the cleanse is over, and you'll be able to maintain those results.

Directions for the cleanse:

  • Breakfast: 1 scoop Shakeology and 8-10 oz. of water
  • Snack: 1 piece of fruit (low glycemic fruits: pears, apples, grapefruit, or strawberries)
  • Lunch: 1 scoop Shakeology and 8-10 oz. of water
  • Snack: 1 scoop Shakeology and 8-10 oz. of water
  • Dinner: “Big” mixed green salad with 4-6 oz. grilled white fish or poultry (no salt added!)

Thursday, March 1, 2012


Here is a collection of videos to help you on your fitness journey.  They are intended to supplement your workout program or help breakdown a move that you may have trouble with.   Please comment and request video for any move, doesn't matter which program.  And please forgive my low quality Flip video and any videos with Andy bumbling in the background.  :)

How to Burpee:

Great Video to Strengthen Your Core - Especially if you're having lower back pain!!!!

How to strengthen your quads if your knees are bothering you:

4 Minute Interval Workout to Blast Some Calories If You Want Dessert After Dinner!!!

(Do this before you go to dinner so your body will use up the calories you feed it before you 
go to sleep)

Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Everyone is hungry for results.  It's what gets us motivated to start working out in the first place.  We want to see our appearance change.  That's our number one motivator.  And it does work but...

If you're new to exercise or have a lot of weight to lose, you may not see your appearance change immediately.  It takes about 60 days of dedication before you'll be able to see a change in your appearance and weighing yourself every day or every week and constantly staring in the mirror searching for results isn't going to help.  You're not going to see them.  

Many of us have an addiction to the scale.  The only way we know how to tell if we're doing the right thing - if we're LOSING weight - is to weigh ourselves.  Unfortunately, when you're exercising regularly, the scale stops being a reliable tool.  As you workout, you not only burn fat but you build muscle.  So while you're losing the weight of the fat you burned, you're gaining the weight of the muscle.  As you recover, your muscles retain water.  So the dropping number you like to see as a source of motivation?  The scale isn't going to give it to you.  So keep it tucked away and stay off of it.

This is what I want you to focus on to stay motivated, to keep pushing play everyday.  There are some results that we get immediately after exercising and they really do enrich our daily life.

  1. You reduce stress/anxiety.
  2. Your self-esteem lifts.  You feel happier.
  3. You get the post-workout high and get a lot done!
  4. You feel proud of yourself for doing it.
  5. (My favorite) You can compare how you did last time to today and see how you're getting stronger which is awesome!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Healthy Breakfast Recipes

Crustless Spinach & Feta Quiche

8 egg whites
2 eggs
1/2 tub of baby spinach 
1 yellow onion - diced
4 green onion stocks - diced
3 garlic cloves, crushed
4 oz (1/2 cup) crumbled reduced fat feta
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp coconut oil (for greasing the pan)
sea salt and ground pepper to taste

This is the coconut oil I recommend:

In a large frying pan, heat 1 tbsp coconut oil.  When the oil starts to shine, add your onions:

Add a handful of spinach at a time

And stir the spinach leaves into the onions until they start to wilt.

Once you have incorporated all of the spinach you are going to use, turn off heat and add garlic. Stir in the garlic until it becomes fragrant.  You don't want the garlic to brown.

Combine eggs, egg whites, salt, pepper, spinach mix and feta in a bowl and mix well.

Then pour into your greased baking pan (8 x 8 or a round pan)

Bake for 16-18 minutes, (or until firm in the middle) then let cool and serve!
Serves 4
Calories: 197 Fat: 14 g Carb: 5 g Protein: 18 g

Bacon Spinach Chevre Scramble
2 slices organic bacon (nitrite and nitrate free please!)
2 whole eggs
2 egg whites
1 handful baby spinach leaves
1/4 onion diced
1 green onion diced
1/4 cup goat cheese (chevre)
1-3 grinds of peppercorn
Topping:  nonfat plain greek yogurt (optional)

On medium-low heat, cook bacon.until crispy.  Set aside.
Leave bacon grease in frying pan and use it to saute onions and spinach until onions are fragrant and spinach just begins to wilt.  
In a medium bowl, whisk eggs and egg whites together.  Mix in goat cheese until just incorporated.  Add bacon and spinach mix.
Pour contents of bowl back into the same frying pan and heat on medium low, scrambling the eggs until cooked through.
Serves 1
(including 1/4 cup greek yogurt) Calories:  336  Fat: 17 g  Carbs: 12 g  Protein: 32 g

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Clean Baking Substitutions

  • Sugar can be substituted with half the amount of sugar plus 1-2 tsp vanilla extract (the vanilla flavor tricks our brains into think it's sweeter than it is.  A better substitution would be coconut nectar, agave nectar or palm sugar.  Stevia also works but can have an aftertaste.  To go completely natural, you can use a banana with 1/2 a cup of dates blended together and this will sweeten a batch of 6 muffins (double that for a dozen)
  • Eggs can be substituted with 2 egg whites per whole egg
  • Wheat-based flour can be substituted with coconut or almond flour.  Both of these flours contain fiber and protein naturally and give baked goods some extra sweetness so you don't miss using as much sugar.
  • Vegetable oil/canola oil can be substituted with coconut oil - if you are going to eat your confection early in the day.  Coconut oil is a medium-chain triglyceride and the only saturated fat our bodies treat like a carb.  This means that we burn coconut oil immediately if we move after ingesting it.  It's great fuel for a workout  You can add it to your protein shake.  Apple sauce, mashed bananas or pumpkin (like pie filling) also works.  
  • Milk can be replaced with almond milk.  8 oz of almond milk has half the calories and double the nutrients of 8 oz of skim milk.
  • Crisco can be replaced with palm shortening, a natural non-hydrogenated shortening
  • Butter may also be replaced with apple sauce or mashed bananas.  If you do want to use butter, pick a natural and grass-fed (well, the cows are grass-fed, not the butter) butter that isn't hydrogenated like Kerrygold brand.  You should try their garlic and herb butter - it's amazing.  Earth Balance makes a "butter" that is vegan made from olive oil that is full of ALA omega-6.  Butter is not bad for you!  In fact, butter contains something called butyric acid which helps lubricate your GI tract, eliminating irritation caused by digesting grains or peanuts.   Grains, peanuts, legumes and dairy can cause gut irritation that actually can make your tummy puffier than it needs to be (why my dessert recipes do not include these ingredients.)
  • If something asks for peanut butter, use almond butter or pistachio or even cashew butter instead.  These are easier on the digestion and won't stick around your waistline.  Peanut butter is not bad for you, but many people have trouble digesting it.    

Friday, February 24, 2012

Sides/Light Meals

Collard Greens & Bacon

1 tablespoon olive oil
3 slices bacon
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
3 cups chicken broth
1 pinch red pepper flakes
1 pound fresh collard greens, cut into 2-inch pieces

Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add bacon, and cook until crisp. Remove bacon from pan, crumble and return to the pan. Add onion, and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, and cook until just fragrant. Add collard greens, and fry until they start to wilt.
Pour in chicken broth, and season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes, or until greens are tender.
Calories: 120 | Total Fat: 8.9g | Protein: 12g (Makes 6 servings)

Spicy Roasted Cauliflower
One head cauliflower 
One lemon 
4 garlic cloves 
2 teaspoons cumin 
2 teaspoons coriander 
1 teaspoon paprika 
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 
1 to 2 teaspoons olive oil 
Fresh ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Chop the cauliflower into bite-sized pieces. Mince the four garlic cloves. Zest the lemon. In a small bowl, combine 2 teaspoons cumin, 2 teaspoons coriander, 1 teaspoons paprika, 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the cauliflower onto the sheet. Mix with lemon zest, garlic, and spice mix. Drizzle with 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil, and lots of fresh ground pepper. Stir to coat evenly.
Bake for about 40 minutes, until tender, stirring occasionally.
To serve, squeeze on some fresh lemon juice and add a bit more kosher salt to taste. Serve warm.
Yields 4 servings (Recipe/picture from

Zucchini Pizza Bites
This is my favorite healthy snack :)  Eggplant also works for this.

Zucchini Pizza Bites
Gina's Weight Watcher Recipes (
Servings: 1 • Serving Size: 4 pieces  Old Points: 2 pts  Points+: 3 pts
Calories: 124.8 • Fat: 5.7 g  Protein: 8.2 g  Carb: 10.4 g  Fiber: 3.0 g   

  • 4 slices large zucchini 1/4" thick (or 1 medium zucchini cut on diagnal)
  • Spray olive oil (Pam also works)
  • 2 tbsp pizza sauce
  • 1/4 cup part skim mozzarella
  • salt and pepper

    Cut zucchini about 1/4 inch thick. Spray both side lightly with oil and season with salt and pepper. Broil or grill for about 2 minute on each side. Top with sauce and cheese and broil for an additional minute or two. (Careful not to burn cheese)

    Avocado and Grilled Corn Salad
    Avocado and Grilled Corn Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette 
    5 Ears Corn, husk removed, brush with olive oil and grilled, remove corn with sharp knife  (you can also use frozen corn - cheaper and faster and less nutrients lost with freezing than with canning)
    2 Avocado’s, diced and sprinkled with lemon juice to prevent browning
    2 C. Tomatoes, red and yellow cherry variety or equivalent
    1 Small red onion, finely diced
    ¾ C. Feta, crumbled
    1 ½ C. English cucumber, skin on and chopped small dice

    Add to a large bowl and refrigerate until ready to use.

    Cilantro Vinaigrette - (if you don't have time for this, Trader Joe's Cilantro Vinaigrette works too!!!)

    6 T. Olive oil
    2 T. Sherry vinegar
    1 t. Garlic powder
    2 T. Fresh cilantro, minced
    ½ t. Salt
    10 Grinds of fresh ground pepper

    Add all of the above ingredients in a small glass jar with a lid. Shake really well. Taste and adjust seasoning and ratios of oil and vinegar as you desire.

    When ready to serve salad, add the dressing and gently toss.

    Thursday, February 23, 2012

    Healthy Dessert Options

    Shakeology FUDGE!!! OMG IT IS SO EFFING GOOD!!!!
    Ahem. Let me get it together here. :)

    16 servings


    1/2 cup Shakeology Chocolate

    1-2 TBS cocoa powder

    2 TBS raw, organic honey

    1 tsp high quality vanilla extract

    1/2 cup raw, organic coconut butter (also known as coconut oil)

    1.Add all ingredients to a small mixing bowl, except for coconut butter.
    2.Add softened coconut butter and mix well with a spatula.†
    3.Line a 8×6 pan with wax paper and pour fudge into the pan.
    4.Refrigerate about 30 minutes, or until firm. Store in the refrigerator.

    †Coconut butter melts into coconut oil when stored above 76ºF. You will want this so that you can easily mix it, so if your coconut butter is hard, place it in an ovenproof container and put it in the oven at the lowest temperature you oven will set to, and it will melt pretty quickly.

    Coconut Muffins

    • 3 eggs
    • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
    • 1/4 cup honey, or maple syrup (or mix them up)
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 cup sifted coconut flour
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
    • 3 tablespoons dried shredded (or flakes) coconut 

    Preheat oven to 350 or 400 degrees F. Grease 6 muffin tins with additional 
    coconut oil. Set aside.

    In a small bowl beat eggs, coconut oil, honey and salt together. Combine 
    coconut flour and baking powder together and whisk into batter until 

    Fill prepared muffin cups half-way with batter and sprinkle coconut on top.
    Bake in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes.

    Chunky Monkey Muffins
    2 ripe bananas
    1  C dates
    1/2 C roasted creamy almond butter (use MaraNatha brand sunflower seed butter to make these nut-free)
    1/2 C coconut flour
    1/4 C coconut oil, liquified
    1/4 C palm shortening
    2 tsp baking soda
    1/2 tsp salt
    1 Tbsp vanilla

    Choose your flavor:
    2 Tbsp Tapioca Flour (vanilla based muffins)
    2 Tbsp Cocoa Powder (chocolate based muffins)

    Topping (Optional):
    1/2 C dark chocolate chips
    1/2 C chopped walnuts

    In a food processor, puree together the dates and bananas until smooth
    Add remaining ingredients to food processor and pulse until a thick batter forms (scrape sides to fully incorporate but do not over blend)
    Spoon into lined muffin tin, filling cups 2/3 full
    Toss topping ingredients together in small bowl, sprinkle on top of each muffin and press gently to get them to “stick”
    Bake at 350 degrees for 16 – 18 minutes (yields 12 muffins)

    Avocado Chocolate Pudding

    This may sound gross but seriously, you won't be able to tell that it's an avocado.  It's awesome!
    Recipe from
    • 1 ripe avocado
    • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
    • 1/4 cup raw agave nectar
    • 1/4 cup almond milk
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Makes 2 servings
    Peel and quarter a ripe avocado. 
    Put all the ingredients in a blender or mix in a bowl with a hand-mixer and blend until smooth. 
    Serve and enjoy!

    Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream
    1 Frozen Banana (cut up banana into small pieces before freezing so it's easy to blend)
    2 Tbsp nut butter (I use almond, you can use peanut butter, nutella, cashew butter, whatever rocks your world!)
    1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    1 scoop whey protein powder (chocolate or vanilla)

    Cut up banana and freeze overnight.
    Put all ingredients in a blender (or shaker cup/bowl with hand blender) and blend until creamy.
    Serves:  1
    Nutrition value varies based on type of nut butter and type of protein powder

    Clean Main Dish Options

    A crockpot can seriously save you time and give you an opportunity to be able to fit a healthy meal into your day without having to spend a lot of time cooking.  We very much recommend investing in one!  Even a cheaper crockpot will do the trick.  However, crockpot recipes may also be done in a dutch oven or stock pot on the stove.

    Thai Coconut Chicken Stew

    1 - 14 oz can light coconut milk
    1 - 14 oz can organic fire roasted crushed or diced tomatoes
    1 - can bamboo shoot strips
    1 - bell pepper, diced
    1/2 - lime
    16 oz - chicken - diced or shredded
    1-2 tsp red curry paste
    1-2 tsp ground ginger
    1 tbsp shredded fresh cilantro
    Sea salt to taste

    Combine all ingredients in crockpot except for cilantro (best to save that for the end so the flavor remains strong).  Let cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.  If you decide to make this recipe in a stock pot, combine all ingredients and bring to a boil.  Lower heat to low/med and let simmer for 20 minutes (or longer depending on your stove; you want the chicken to be cooked through)

    Garlic Beef Stew

    1.5 – 2 lbs of grass fed stew meat
    1 yellow onion diced
    4-6 carrots diced
    4-6 stalks of celery diced
    6-12 mashed cloves of garlic
    palm full of ground marjoram
    sea salt and black pepper to taste
    1 small can tomato paste
    splash of chicken broth

    Throw it all in your crock pot, mix well, cook 8 hours on low (or 4 hours on high). It’s a lot of garlic but it mellows from the long cooking time and your house will smell amazing!

    Clean-Eating Fried Chicken

    1 cup (250 mL) coconut oil
    2 large eggs
    1 cup (150 g) almond flour
    1 tsp. paprika
    1 tsp. garlic powder
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1/2 tsp. black pepper
    1/2 tsp. dried thyme
    1 tsp. chipotle powder (optional)
    2 pounds (900 g) chicken- thighs, drums, breasts

    1. Heat oil in large frying pan to 350F (175C) and preheat oven to 400F (205C)
    2. Whisk eggs in medium sized bowl
    3. Combine all dry ingredients in large bowl and mix well.
    4. Dip chicken in whisked eggs.
    5. Coat/cover chicken in dry mixture and place in hot oil.  Allow both sides to brown (about 2 minutes each side).
    6. Place drying rack on sheet pan and assemble check on the rack so ther is space between all pieces.
    7. Put chicken in oven for 10-15 minutes.  Remove and serve.

    Vegetarian Pad Thai
    You can save time with this dish by dicing anything that needs dicing the night before - this is really a quick dish to make, the only part that's time consuming is the chopping.

    1 package rice noodles
    1 package extra firm tofu diced into cubes
    2 tbs cornstarch
    ¼ tsp white pepper (regular is fine)
    ¼ tsp sea salt
    ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
    4 tbs peanut or vegetable oil
    2 free range eggs (optional - if you're vegan, you can leave this out and/or replace with tofu)
    1-2 fresh chillies, minced
    1 tsp tamarind paste
    1 tbs palm sugar, grated (1 tbsp agave or brown sugar if palm sugar is unavailable)
    2 tbs soy sauce
    3 tbs lime juice
    2 tbs water
    ½ cup roughly chopped roasted unsalted peanuts
    1 cup fresh snow peas
    2 cups bean sprouts
    4 green onions chopped

    Prepare the noodles following the packet instructions; rinse thoroughly under cold water, set aside.

    Combine the cornstarch with the white pepper, salt and cayenne pepper (if using), toss in the cubed tofu with a small squeeze of lime juice, tossing coat the tofu evenly in the cornflour mixture.

    Heat about 2 tablespoons of peanut oil in a wok or frying pan, fry the tofu over a medium/high heat, shaking the wok frequently until the tofu is golden on all sides, remove from the wok and set aside on absorbent paper.

    If adding eggs whisk the two eggs quickly and fry in the hot wok with a little oil for 1 minute until just cooked. Remove from the wok and set aside.

    Heat another 2 tablespoons of oil in the same wok, over a medium heat add the minced chilli,  tamarind paste, grated palm sugar and soy sauce, toss quickly allowing the sugar to dissolve.

    Add the prepared noodles with the lime juice and 2 tablespoons of water, continue to toss the noodles over a medium/high heat, add the prepared tofu (and egg if using), toss well and then add the peanuts, snow peas, beansprouts and spring onions, tossing well until heated through.  

    Remove from heat and serve!

    Channa Masala (Garbanzo Beans & Curry)

    1 tablespoon cornstarch
    1 cup low-sodium vegetable broth, divided
    2 teaspoons canola oil
    1/2 onion, chopped
    2 teaspoons curry powder
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    1 can (15 ounces) no-saltadded chickpeas, rinsed and drained
    1/2 cup unsalted cashews, coarsely chopped
    1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
    4 tablespoons fat-free greek-style yogurt

    Whisk the cornstarch in a small bowl with enough of the broth to dissolve. Set aside.
    Combine the oil, onion, curry powder, salt, and pepper in a large skillet over medium heat. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until the onion is softened.
    Add the remaining broth to the pan along with the reserved cornstarch mixture. Cook, whisking constantly, until thickened. Add the chickpeas and cashews. Simmer for 5 minutes for the flavors to blend. Stir in the cilantro. Serve with a dollop of the yogurt.

    Tony Horton's Vegan Burritos
    2 TBL. Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
    1 Red Bell Pepper, deseeded & sliced into thin strips
    1 Yellow bell pepper, deseeded & sliced into thin strips
    1 Red onion, thinly sliced into 1/2 moons
    1 zucchini, thinly sliced
    1 -15oz can organic black beans, or 1-1/2 cups cooked
    1-15oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes
    2 tsp ground cumin
    1 TBL chili powder blend
    1/2 tsp sea salt
    Freshly ground black pepper to taste
    1 c. quinoa or brown rice, cooked
    1 pkg. gluten free brown rice tortillas (Food for Life Brand), or sprouted grain tortillas (Ezekial Brand)
    Extras (optional) Avocado, Tempeh Bacon, Daiya Cheese or Wayfare foods We Can't Say it's Cheese Mexican Cheese spread (YUMMY) You can also leave the vegan world and add regular bacon, montery jack cheese and grilled chicken.

    Rinse quinoa or brown rice, and prepare according to package directions.
    While quinoa/rice is cooking, heat 1 TBL of the Olive oil in a large skillet. Add peppers & onions and sauté until soft – about 3-5 minutes. Add zucchini, cumin, chili powder and sea salt and continue cooking for 2 more minutes, stirring to incorporate all the spices with the peppers & onions. Add tomatoes and stir to mix. Lower heat and cover, cooking for about 5 minutes until peppers are really soft. Remove from heat. Add beans to pan and stir to incorporate.

    Heat tortilla shell in the microwave about 15 seconds to soften. Place the tortilla on a flat surface. Spread a very small amount of Daiya cheese (if using) over entire tortilla. Add 1 scoop of pepper, onion & bean mixture to bottom 1/3 of tortilla. Top with 1 scoop of quinoa or rice. Add avocado (optional) or tempeh bacon and roll it up!  (If you are using the Gluten-Free tortillas, it's best to roll each burrito made to order.)

    Thursday, February 16, 2012

    March Beachbody Challenge

    Summer is coming up quickly!!!!!  That means shorts, tank tops and (gasp) bathing suits!!!! So, to get ready for this revealing season, I challenge you to commit 60 days to transforming your health, your body and your mind.  That means for the next 60 days, I want you to make some promises to yourself.

    I want you to promise that you are going to workout at least 5 days a week.
    I want you to promise that you are going to put forth every effort to eat right.
    I want you to commit to these promises and hold the knowledge in your heart that if you do this, you will reap the benefits.

    For 60 days, we are going to eat right.  We are going to eat within our calorie range (everyone's is different) and we are going to push play and work out at least 5 days a week.  We are going to post our check-ins everyday to show that we are actively working and we are going to post our struggles and reach out when we need help.  *Please post your daily check-in on the Team Athena Challenge Group wall on Facebook.  Check-ins should include what workout you completed that day, any feelings you have about that workout, and whether or not you stuck with your eating plan.  Please be honest!  One of our goals is to learn about our food triggers and how to combat them.*  

    You may use 2 cheat meals during this 60 day period, but you must post when you use one.  This WILL NOT count against you.  A cheat meal is any meal that causes you to exceed your daily allotment by over 200 calories.  For example, if you need to eat 1800 calories a day to lose 1 lb and you eat a burger that is 1,000 calories and fries that are 500 calories, this combined with the rest of your food that you eat the rest of you day will make you go over your daily calorie limit.  REMEMBER: 1 lb = 3,500 calories!  Everyone's calorie needs are different!  You may calculate yours at or see the calorie calculator section of your nutrition guide that comes with your program.  A meal is ALSO a cheat meal if it contains more processed foods or chemicals than whole foods (and especially if it contains ZERO whole foods like most candy does).  So if you need to eat some chocolate, eat something made with cocoa and milk and sugar.  Not something with cocoa flavoring and high fructose corn syrup and a ton of unpronounceable chemicals.  

    During these 60 days, we will also have weekly challenges.  These may consist of adding more veggies to each plate everyday, going a week with no diet soda and drinking 8 glasses of water, or taking out the Starbucks run before work for a week.  These weekly challenges will not have prizes but are meant to help teach tools and exercise willpower so that you will be stronger when temptations come your way in the future.

    At the end of the 60 days, the winner will receive a prize (this remains to be decided but it will be a cool one - I will post what the prize will be once the challenge is full).  The winner will be determined by whether you checked in daily and whether you stuck to the plan.  Every day you post your check-in that you exercised and ate well, your name gets entered into a "hat."  Any day you miss a post, you don't get your name entered.  If you miss a workout, you lose an entry.  If you use a 3rd cheat meal, you lose an entry.  At the end of the 60 days, your name will be drawn randomly.  The more you post and the more you push, the better your chances are.

    I HIGHLY RECOMMEND USING SHAKEOLOGY FOR THIS CHALLENGE!  Shakeology is a great weapon against temptations.  If your family/boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife whoever around you is eating dessert?  Make a shake!  Make sure you are armed and ready so that you can stay on track.
    To order Shakeology, click here:


    Please start with posting a before photo.  You don't need to wear a bikini or a speedo.  A fitted shirt, preferably a tank top, and yoga pants or fitted pants/shorts of some kind will do.  If you are toning up, I recommend showing skin.  It's easier to see a difference in muscle tone when you can actually see skin.  Please stand in front of a plain background - in front of a door works great.  It makes it easier to compare your before and after.  I know it's embarrassing to post a before photo, but it's really fun to see the afters.

    Your daily check-in should include the workout you've completed and whether or not you've stayed on track and within your calories that day (and the night before!!!)  If you "cheat," please post anything you speculate might have been a trigger for food.  Were you bored?  Did your significant other come home and start eating?  Stressful day?  A commercial?  Think about it.  This is the key to get you to get out of the fridge when you don't need to be putting food in your mouth.  :)  You may vent all you want or talk about your workout, whatever you want to say.  Just keep checking in.  And encourage each other too! Comment on each others' check-ins.  It makes this easier to stay with when you work together and form a bond of support.  

    **********Please note, in order to be eligible for prizes you must be registered on Team Beachbody with TurboRachel or CoachKara85 as your coach.  We are unable to award prizes for anyone who is not registered under us.  If we are not currently your coach, please email and ask to have your coach set as TurboRachel or CoachKara85.************