The Zone & Garlic Pulled Pork

The diet style that I really want to look into first is the Zone. This is the meal plan prescribed by CrossFit and definitely is effective for losing weight. The Zone also does not strictly prohibit the consumption of any particular food. The two biggest components of the Zone are portion control and balance. 

The Zone diet works off of a block system; each food is categorized in a particular macronutrient (carbohydrate, protein, fat) and assigned a serving size. Each serving size is one block. The blocks are designed to provide each meal and snack with a macronutrient break down of 40% carb, 30% protein, and 30% fat. 


My Diet Experience & Sweet and Sour Carrots and Celery

Now that you know how I feel about the word "diet", I want to dive into two "diets" that I do support from both personal experience and expert advice. The two diets, of which you may be familiar, are The Zone and Paleo/Primal. 

First, I want to give you a little background on my personal experience with these two diets. When I graduated college it dawned on me that I had packed a bit extra baggage to take home. I moved back home and started a cardio kickboxing program at the karate school I attended as a kid. I also started training for a half marathon in November. I switched to eating mostly whole grains and lower fats since that was what most of the articles I found on MSN health and other sites suggested. Also, continuing with the "carbo-load" mindset from high school track, I ate tons of pastas and breads before a long run along with high carb "recovery" snacks after cardio class. October hits and I realize that I haven't lost a pound; if anything, I had gained more. So I started counting calories. I found an awesome app on my iTouch called Lose It!. It had me enter my weight, goal weight, and birthday (as a goal completion date). Soon I got the hang of it and slowly started losing weight. At first I tried to keep my fat intake below 20%, protein around 20%, and carb around 60%. After 5 long months I was down about 15 lbs. I was also super agitated, irritable, not quite approachable... 


Sweet Potato, Apple, Sausage and Spinach Medley

Today's post might look a little familiar to some of you; I am literally copying and pasting a previous post I did several months back. I feel that it is worth reiterating especially for our newcomers...

First I should say that I hate using the word diet. The majority of the American race incorrectly defines the word diet as a strict limitation to either amounts or types of foods to take place or a specific period of time with the intentions of weight loss and/or improved health. After their "diet" is complete they will go back to the way they were eating prior to the change. This definition is much more correctly defined as dieting (still a cr@ppy word).


Better Way to Start Your Day

If I had to describe the word nutrition in one sentence, it would be "nutrition is the key to life". Literally! If we do not provide our body with nourishment, it will perish. However, there are several levels of nourishment that we can attain. Let's use the USDA Beef grading system terms to define. At the top, we have Prime nutrition where our diet and lifestyle provide us with the necessary macronutrients, micronutrients, vitamins, and minerals to thrive in this world. Next down is Choice nutrition where we have to supplement our diet and lifestyle to access all of the necessary macronutrients, micronutrients, vitamins, and minerals to sustain in this world. A step down from that is Select nutrition where we follow a diet and lifestyle to loosely progress towards better nourishment, however we are usually caught in the tangled web of nutrition information available and not sure where to go. Lastly, and I believe this is where most people fall, is the Standard nutrition. People's diet and lifestyle is providing them just enough nourishment to survive, and many have no idea how to access the higher levels of nutrition.


My Commitment to Your Betterment!

Attention all Naked Kitchen Fans!! Brace yourself for a new path to health and wellness!

In conjunction with my box, CrossFit FiveStar, The Naked Kitchen will be serving as the platform for our nutrition program. I will continue to post recipes and informational ramblings. In addition, the posts will be heavily based on nutrition facts, theology, methods, and anything else that is pertinent to reaching our goal of optimal nutrition.

If there is any topic you specifically wish me to touch on, let me know! Also, please ask questions through e-mails and comments whenever possible! I could talk about what interests me all day, but I would rather talk about what interests you :)

Enjoy :)


Mission Impossible: Pancakes

My mission: cook pancakes every weekend. Enjoy life :)

So this post is a long time coming! Thanks for being patient, those of you whom I've promised that I was going to post it. 

My favorite part of my weekends is pancakes. It started when I was a kid. My Mom, Dad and I went to the cafe at the golf course right down the road from my house every Sunday for breakfast. Mom got the Belgium waffles topped with fresh fruit and a side of bacon. Dad got the western omelet with toast and bacon. I got the short stack of pancakes. Everyyyyy week until I was about 16 (when I entered the official working world). It was great; Dad would read the "snooze"paper, Mom would read the USA Today, I read the Comics; we all ate together and chatted causally about life with the sun shining down on us (we ate on the patio), the golfers practicing on the putting green, everyone with a smile on their face... ahh, memories!


Coconut Shrimp Bisque

As an American society we tend to look at rules as more of guidelines. Yellow light means slow down, but to 99% of us, we speed up. Sick days are supposed to be used when we're sick, but most of us use them to take the kids to the zoo. Legally we can't drink until 21, but.... you get the point!

Cooking on the other hand, should be viewed as guidelines, but most of us read recipes as if they are the be-all-and-end-all to the meal. I am here to tell you NO! Be as unruly as you want! Change the spices up, use a shallot instead of an onion, grill the chicken instead of broiling it, be bad! Really though, if a recipe calls for ingredients or a cooking style that you don't have or aren't comfortable with, change it up.