Nutrition is an oft-discussed topic for personal trainers, including this one. And while I'll never claim to be a Registered Dietician, I've worked with some excellent ones over the years. They taught me a lot, and I continue to learn from my clients and my own ongoing research. Paleo diet anyone? Atkins? Gluten Free? Who's to know? Combine all the mixed messages with the surprisingly little amount of nutrition knowledge many people have and who wouldn't be confused. A co-worker I respect a lot asked one day: "what if everyone stopped listing what makes one diet different from another, and see what they all have in common." I couldn't agree more.
Hopefully, you eat a minimum of processed foods and high fat dairy; you eat lots of fruits, veggies, and whole grains and legumes; you seek out clean and well-sourced protein; and you enjoy your meals! Yes. I hope you enjoy your meals. My active clients want satisfying food that tastes good. And you can count the following recipe as meeting those criteria. Filling, savory, and a great anchor to any lunch or dinner, the Little Quinoa Patties we made last week were a 10 out of 10 on the new recipe discovery quest. If you are gluten-free, you can easily make the patties with gluten-free breadcrumbs, and a dairy-free person could use an egg substitute and omit the cheese. We used a good peccorino and the flavor was great. Next time we'll add shallots, and we used scallions instead of chives. The recipe says to cook for 7 minutes per side, more if necessary; I cooked them for about 10 minutes per side. YUM.
Little Quinoa Patties
2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa, at room temperature
4 large eggs, beaten
1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh chives
1 yellow or white onion, finely chopped
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Gruyère cheese
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 cup whole grain bread crumbs, plus more if needed
Water, if needed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil or clarified butter
Combine the cooked quinoa, eggs, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir in the chives, onion, cheese, and garlic. Add the bread crumbs, stir, and let sit for a few minutes so the crumbs can absorb some of the moisture. At this point, you should have a mixture you can easily form into twelve 1 inch patties. Err on the moist side because it makes for a not-overly-dry patty, but you can add more bread crumbs, a bit at a time, to firm up the mixture, as necessary. Conversely, a bit more beaten egg or water can be used to moisten the mixture.
Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-low heat, add 6 patties, if they'll fit with some room between each, cover, and cook for 7 to 10 minutes, until the bottoms are deeply browned. Turn up the heat if there is no browning after 10 minutes and continue to cook until the patties are browned. Carefully flip the patties with a spatula and cook the second sides for 7 minutes, or until golden. Remove from the skillet and cool on a wire rack while you cook the remaining patties. Alternatively, the quinoa mixture keeps nicely in the refrigerator for a few days; and you can cook patties to order, if you prefer.
To cook quinoa:
Combine 2 cups/12 oz/340 g of well-rinsed uncooked quinoa with 3 cups / 700 ml water and 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, cover, decrease the heat, and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, until the quinoa is tender and you can see the little quinoa curlicues.
This recipe is from the Epicurious app for Ipad. You can view the complete recipe, from Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson, online at: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Little-Quinoa-Patties-365029?mbid=ipapp
To see how other cooks rated and reviewed this recipe, go to http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Little-Quinoa-Patties-365029?mbid=ipapp
Week before last I spent a day and a half working on a photo shoot for Lucy brand sportswear. I was hired as a "technical consultant": i.e., someone to make sure the models got into viable poses and with good form. My friends now call me the body wrangler. Fun excuse to re-arrange some clients and spend some time outdoors in one of Norcal's more beautiful spots: Inverness and Pt. Reyes Station. The shoot was for the fall/holiday brand campaign, and they set up yoga, lifestyle, and nature shoots in addition to the fitness set-ups. Of course the lighthouse was a location, but I thankfully didn't work that shot because the winds were record high and the afternoon was cut short. The abandoned boat is always a favorite. . .
As you can imagine, the makeup and hair pros were tasked with keeping the models' look natural. These are Lucy girls today, and they work out and live actively, let's remember. And the talent manager mentioned how they'd cast athletic girls. . .I knew from the production schedule the girls' heights and sizes, details provided so the stylist would be ready for possible alterations. Five foot nine and a size 2, you shouldn't be surprised to learn, is considered athletic in the modeling world.
The house they'd rented as home base for the crew was pretty sweet. The Deer Park Ranch is ultramodern and pristine and ready for your private rental. First I thought the pool adjacent to the eating area was for mood only, and extended out into the deck for design appeal. Silly me -- it was a one lane lap pool. We used the outside decks for the strength training shots.
I'd had some very cool conversations with different members of the crew during the job. And cute boy from L.A., who was running the production, proudly referred to his success at casting athletic models when he was asking about my work. And the notion of perspective immediately came to mind. We all operate with our own point of view, and I believe it is the evolved person who can truly consider another's. What's your idea of athletic and healthy? I think of the women in my classes -- some over 50, and without perfectly toned arms, who kick butt around the block every time. I also think of the 30-something moms who knock themselves out to get back into the hot jeans asap, as well as the woman struggling with mental health issues who needs her workouts to help manage her depression.
I consider exercise a lifeline, and it's free. I think more people should exercise regularly. I also think women are bombarded with unrealistic images they decide they need to copy. I think obese people can't feel very good, and they're insides aren't healthy, but we can't talk bout that so much, and isn't "fat acceptance" and empowerment a good thing? Girls diet as young as age 10. Overweight boys don't know how to talk about it. American's as a whole are fatter and unhealthier and eating more sugar than ever before. . .throw a rock on Google and find your favorite source. And plastic surgery? Shoot. I'm tired of fake boobs. When will the paradigm shift occur? We are crazy about our bodies and I wish us all a dose of good health and serenity.
And I hope you like the Lucy posters when you're in-store. The models really did look good :)
I never buy the Marin IJ. I just don't. Occasionally I'll glance at the "In Your Town" section when I see it lying around at work, but that's about it. But day before yesterday on a gas station run, I decided to buy that paper. I'm not even sure why. And there, on page A8, was some of the most exciting, positive news I'd read in any paper in a long time: "15 Minutes of daily exercise a benefit." With a fresh voice and direct message, Alicia Chang of the Associated Press was telling people to not "despair if you can't fit in the recommended 30 minutes of daily exercise. Growing evidence suggests that even half that much can help." And luckily she goes on to say you can't slack off (!)
Bodies weren't designed to be sedentary. Modern society works against us. You may live an active lifestyle and have fit friends, but the majority of Americans are not. Although established fitness guidelines by the World Health Organization and many others recommend at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily, it is encouraging to see the results from a Taiwanese study. People can lead a longer life by exercising just 15 minutes per day.
Some people are daunted at the thought of joining a health club. Others, such as the obese or de-conditioned, might feel overwhelmed at the thought of going from no exercise at all to a full 30 minutes. It's good news but no surprise to those of us who have been preaching the exercise word for years: some movement is better than none; and not only is 15 minutes better than none, turns out it might be much better for you than you would've thought. Spread the good feelings that exercise brings, and grab a friend that might need some encouragement and head outside for a brisk walk or hike. . .both are free and easy to do at any level.
Oh, and maybe I don't buy the IJ because they over-edit their AP stories. The link above is to the full article as it ran on Huffington Post.
Most of us in the fitness industry know exercise is medicine. Physical, mental, it's all kind of good for you. Exercising when pregnant speeds up recovery from labor and delivery. Women experiencing menstrual cramps typically feel relief after moderate exercise. Weight bearing exercise helps prevent osteoporosis. And an exciting new report is out proving what some cutting-edge fitness professionals and doctors have known for some time: exercise for cancer patients reduces both the side effects of treatment and the incidence of recurrence.
The report, entitled "Move More: Physical Activity the underrated 'Wonder Drug,'" from Macmillan Cancer Support in the U.K., says 150 minutes of moderately intense activity per week is the minimum amount needed to see the positive effects.
In addition to some other very compelling findings, the report shows breast cancer patients' risk of recurrence and of dying from the disease can be reduced by up to 40% by following the exercise guidelines, as well as a 30% reduction in the risk of dying for prostate cancer patients who engage in the recommended 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise.
To read the study and learn more, go to
To support Cancer and Exercise programs please visit the Sunflower Wellness Website.
And to support a person enduring Cancer treatment or the after-effects, be an exercise buddy and offer to accompany them for an outside walk or hike. . .you will surely benefit as
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