Author Archive for cornerstonefitnesstv

January Playlist For My Cycle Class

playlist

The other day I had 4 people stop me after cycle class to sing to me.  I mean do their best to sing to me.  It happens quite frequently.  Ira what’s that song you know the one with the electro beat. It goes like “booooom bammmmmm ga ga, shot you down.” I always love to see how far they will go with their singing in order to get me to understand what song it is they are referring to.  Just a little entertainment and a good laugh for me as well as them when they realize they are signing to me in the locker room at the gym.

Well why don’t I give you a break from trying to sing to me and share my current playlist? I even have included the itunes link so you can get it quicker!

Greyhound – Swedish House Mafia Tribute Team

I’m An Albatraoz – AronChupa

Love Don’t Die – The Fray

Come With Me Now – Kongos

I Bet My Life – Imagine Dragons

Delirious (boneless) – Steve Aoki

Red Lights – Tiesto

Shot Me Down – David Guetta

Lovers On The Sun – David Guetta

I’m Running – Misstress Barbara

Ba55 – Switchfoot

Save that singing voice for the shower, or to serenade your spouse.  Happy working out!

Feel free to help add to my playlist and drop your favorite song right now in the comments below! Or sing it to me if I ever see you in person, that is much more fun!

Cheers, Ira

Coconut Lime ‘Rice’ (psst it’s really cauliflower)

In your 30 day flip groups one thing we hear a lot of is “OMG that cauliflower rice is off the hook” My response “I know we have made it a bazillion times.” Seriously we have. It is from one of your favorite cookbooks Against All Grain by Danielle Walker.  When you go to make it just trust me double it up.  We have put curry chicken, “burrito”  ingredients, and stir frys on top of this “rice” 

COCONUT-LIME RICE
1 Head organic cauliflower, trimmed and cut into florets
2 TBSP coconut oil
1/4 C Coconut milk
1 TBSP chopped cilantro
1 TBSP fresh lime juice
1/4 tsp sea salt
DIRECTIONS:
Place the cauliflower in a food processor fitted with the grating attachment and process, until chopped into ‘rice grains’.Pick out any large pieces that passed through the grater. Alternatively, grate the cauliflower with a cheese grater.
*We used our Vitamix for this (only 1 cup at a time on low).
Heat the oil in a large skillet  or wok over med-high heat
Add the riced cauliflower and saute for 5 minutes.
Add the remaining ingredients and continue to cook for 20 minutes until the cauliflower is tender.
ENJOY!!

2 Words That Will Change Your Life.

What if you surrounded yourself with people who would encourage you to finish what you started?

The implications of COMPLETING or FINISHING what you start in life are HUGE.

In our 30 day flip program we are discussing the POWER behind the WORD completion.  We are holding eachother accountable to learn how to complete or finish things we start in life.  What if you learned slipping up did not have to mean giving up. What if you learned to get back up and finished what you started? Our 30 day flip program is NOT just all about food, it is about learning to have a powerful mindset.  That we can choose to finish something we started.

I encourage you to surround yourself with people that will help you see things through to completion in your life.

Have a blessed day!

 

SWEET POTATO HASH & EGGS

SWEET HASH

Hey Jen Ira’s wife here. Ira asked me to share this recipe with you all.

This recipe tends to be a repeat around our home! Its a go to when we are coaching our groups through the 30 day flip program.  My kids LOVE this, and it keeps us fueled through the morning up until lunch!
We are big fans of sweet potatoes around here…so give this a try and see if it’s something your kids might even enjoy;)

This is a recipe that I HIGHLY recommend that you prepare the night before, store it in a container in your fridge and make sure to double up on this recipe to enjoy it even for the next day or so.

You will need:

3 small-med sweet potatoes/yams
1/4 C olive oil or Coconut oil
2 tsp chili powder (omit if you don’t like spice)
sea salt
pepper

2-3 eggs (poached, fried, or scrambled)

Directions:

Peel sweet potatoes, cut into thin 1 inch slices.
If you have a food processor add the sweet potato so its thinly chopped.

If you do NOT have a food processor, finish cutting the sweet potato into 1 inch thick slices.
Stack a few of the slices together and using a knife, cut into very thin slices, almost like miniature fries.

Heat your oil on LOW in a medium sized frying pan, add the hash and spices.
Mix to coat in oil.
Cover and cook on LOW for about 15-20 minutes. Occasionally stirring.

Top the hash off with 2-3 eggs (however you like to cook them) and for garnish(and extra healthy fats) add some avocado!!

Enjoy, Jen McNamara

You Have A Built In BS Meter

built in BS meter

Your body is amazing. Did you know that the composition of a mothers breast milk will changed based on the nutritional needs and deficiency of her baby. It is believed the process is regulated by the baby’s saliva as it feeds.

What does that have to do with your built in BS meter?

Do you not think your body as an adult has the same capacity to assess itself and place a distress call when it is lacking certain nutritional content?

I want you to start trusting that your body is intelligent. There is a reason your body is not satisfied when you eat CRAP.

Your body does not count calories. Your body is constantly balancing nutritional content and its’ needs. Your main objective may be to be skinny but that is not your body’s main objective. 

Your body is your advocate. Your body is begging you for a functional level of minerals, vitamins, and nutrients to run all of its’ systems optimally. Until you give your body what is is really asking for it will keep pleading with you through cravings, prompting and unsatisfied red flags.  The problem is previously these built in instincts would motivate you to climbing a tree to grab that coconut. Now you just look down at the target check out and grab pseudo food to stop the pleading, which is much more appealing yet far less appetite suppressing.

Don’t think your body is fooled easily either. Grab that low calorie pretend chocolate bar sweetened artificially and slap the words energy bar-low fat-low calories on it your body is going to call you OUT,

“BS! That is crap! I want REAL food to deal with REAL issues beyond your summer bikini dilemma.”

Remember a calorie is a measurement of energy. Please be aware of how much energy is in your food BUT  if you are just balancing your calorie intake and not paying heed to nutritional content you are not going to “win”. Your body is a fine tuned machine held together by nerves and a chemical explosion of hormones that will beg you more persistently than any 3 year old that NEEDS something from you right now.

Stop underestimating your body. Start listening to it. Start trusting it. The more you give it what it wants (a variety of food closest to the way God made it) the less it is going to keep nagging you for more AND Guess what? Even though it is not your bodies main objective your bathing suit will fit better.

Episode #8 Most Common Exercise + Weight Loss Mistake

episode 8 capture

In this episode I discuss the thing that is really hard for people to grasp when it comes to exercise and trying to lose weight.  It is a common misconception that is played out everyday at the gym.  My recent lifestyle has had me falling into the habit that is counter productive to long term healthy weight maintenance. How about you?

Double Chocolate Crispy Frozen Dessert Bars

IT IS HOT here in Kelowna and suppose to be getting even warmer as the weekend gets here. You need a COOL healthy dessert treat option for the weekend don’t you! Well let me tell you, we have got your back! We had these made for us when we had our third baby Josiah 6 weeks ago! (I know crazy it has already been 6 weeks!) My wife has made them a couple more times since then ;)

They are soooo good and perfect for this hot weather.

dessert bars

 

Ingredients:

FOR THE CRUST:
  • 2 cups rice crisp cereal (use certified gluten-free if necessary)
  • 4 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons brown rice syrup or coconut nectar syrup
FOR THE FILLING:
  • 1 1/2 cups raw cashews, soaked in water for at least 8 hours
  • 1/2 cup virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder or raw cacao powder
  • 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt, or to taste

Directions:

  1. Place cashews in a bowl and cover with 1-inch of water. Let soak for about 8 hours until soft and plump.
  2. Grab an 8-inch square cake pan and line it with 2 pieces of parchment paper, one piece going each way so it’s easy to lift out.
  3. For the crust: In a large bowl, add the rice crisp cereal and cocoa powder. Stir to combine. In a small pot, melt the coconut oil over low heat. Pour the oil and syrup onto the rice crisp and stir very well until combined. If the mixture seems a bit dry you can add another 1/2 tablespoon of syrup and stir again. Spoon the crust mixture into the prepared pan and smooth out. Grab a small piece of parchment paper and use it to press down the crust until packed and even. Place the pan in the freezer so the crust can set while you prepare the filling.
  4. For the filling: Drain and rinse the soaked cashews. In a small pot, melt the coconut oil over low heat. Pour into a high-speed blender. Now add in the  maple syrup and vanilla, followed by the cocoa powder, melted chocolate, fine grain sea salt, and drained cashews. Starting on low, blend the mixture until it comes together and then gradually increase the speed until the mixture is super smooth. If using a Vitamix use the tamper stick to get it going.
  5. Remove crust from freezer and pour on all of the filling. Smooth it out with a spatula and then place the pan back in the freezer (uncovered is fine) for about 3 hours (or longer if desired) until the filling is firm to the touch.
  6. Slice and serve chilled straight from the freezer with a dollop of coconut whipped cream and chopped hazelnuts.
  7. Store leftovers in an air-tight container in the freezer for up to 3 weeks. I like to freeze the slices, then wrap them in tin foil, and place in a sealed glass container for maximum freshness.

Tips: If your blender is having a hard time blending the filling mixture you can try adding a bit more liquid sweetener or melted coconut oil to help things along. Adding a bit of almond milk might be an option too, but I wouldn’t add more than 1/4 cup at most. To make this recipe soy-free, use a soy-free chocolate such as Enjoy Life brand. Looking for a nut-free option for the filling? I haven’t tested one for this particular recipe, but you might want to try out this filling recipe using an avocado-based filling (simply swap the almond milk for a nut-free milk and the peanut butter for sunflower seed butter).

I copied and pasted this recipe from an amazing blog that we use frequently for meals in our home.  You can find more amazing recipes like this at Oh She Glows.

 

 

What’s Wrong With These Bikes?

I have been a group exercise coordinator for a very long time.  Which means I manage the group exercise programs at the gym.

Here is something I come across A LOT, A LOT, did I say A LOT?

iphone pics 149What is that? Well my best answer is I do not know? My assumption would be it is a cluster of spin bikes that have been moved to the back of the spin room because they are not working correctly. My job? Solve the mystery.

Step One: Look in the bike maintenance binder to see what bikes need fixing.

I open the binder. Well that is funny because there is nothing written in the binder which means everything is functioning perfectly.

Step Two: Look at each bike to see if there is anything obvious broken.

Nope, after a little bit of searching and effort on my part nothing stands out.

Step Three: If time permits prior to my class climb on each of the bikes and ride them as you increase tension. Listen for any noises, feel for any issues.

Nope.

Step Four: Shrug shoulders in frustration wheel bike back to its position and hope it was just moved to wash the floor or something.

I find I can relate to this back row of bikes facing the wrong direction and begging for attention. Do you?

Often times when something is not working I find myself doing one of two things.

(1) Isolating myself because I feel I am not of any use to anyone.

(2) Making an emotional display of my displeasure in order to draw some attention.

Whether I choose the 1st or the 2nd behavior both of them get me back to the same place. Those around me will attempt to get me back in the game and when nothing is solved and I no longer appear or feel broken I will just be thrown back into the pack until the next time I try to be useful and my problems once again surface.

Two lessons my crazy mind sees in this back row of misfit bikes.

Lesson #1 The SPIN class called life can be grueling and if you are playing hard all the time things eventually will break, need replacing or repair, nourishment, some loving that’s just NORMAL.

Lesson #2 It’s my job when things are not working to COMMUNICATE what the problem is. Even if I a not exactly sure, sometimes there is so much squeaking, squealing, and misalignment you do not know where it is coming from BUT the more information I can share with the ones I love the better opportunity I am giving them to HELP me meet my needs.

What are your struggles when it comes to getting healthy?

Have you talked to the people around you about them?

Have you given them specific things they can do to help you?

Personally I isolate. My wife Jen is learning this about me and I am learning that if I cannot clearly communicate to her what I am dealing with that I need to tell her that. Sometimes that looks like “I am frustrated with __________ right now and I am praying for clarity. I am not sure what the root of it is. But when I know what it is I will tell you what you maybe able to do to help”

I find that talking it out with her will sometimes bring the clarity I need, which beats the isolation that solves nothing.

We are both getting better at asking “what can I do for you?” and then being specific about what that is.

SO what has you sidelined? Work on clarifying what the problem is. Pray about it. Then ask for specific HELP.

Clearly writing your problem in the bike maintenance binder means there is a much higher chance your issue will be addressed and you will be back in the pack moving forward longer before the next problem arises.

I love this point from Danny Silks “Keep Your Love On.”

“It’s my job to tell you what is going on inside of me, and your job to tell me what’s going on inside of you. We do not have powers of telepathy or the right to assume we know one another’s motives, thoughts, feelings, or needs.”

  

Raw Chocolate Chili Bars

raw chocolate chili barsOne of my avid STEP extraordinaire’s has been known to bring me an awesome healthy treat from time to time.  I asked if I could share the recipe for this chili bar and OH MAN, you are in luck because she said YES.   The combination of chili peppers + cinnamon + chocolate = AMAZING! I shared some of this treat with other people at the gym that day and they have been peddling me ever since to get the recipe.

I made them last night and it took me less then 15 minutes and Noah (my 5 year old) help me dump and stir all the dry ingredients.

Ingredients:

2 cups whole almonds

2 cups coconut desiccated (I used shredded unsweetened coconut because we have a bulk size bag)

1/2 cup coconut sugar

2 cups fresh dates

1/4 cup coconut butter (oil)

3/4 cup cacao or cocoa or carob powder

2 tbsp cinnamon

1 tbsp chili flakes (I accidentally used 1 tsp and it did the trick)

1 tsp pink Himalayan or sea salt

1 tbsp vanilla bean (I used liquid vanilla)

Instruction:

1. Pulse almonds in food processor until just roughly chopped. Place in a large bowl.

2. Add coconut, cocoa or carob powder, coconut sugar, cinnamon, salt, and chili flakes to your almonds and combine.

3. Add your vanilla and coconut butter to your dry ingredients and mix with your hands until evenly distributed.

4. Pit your dates, and process in the food processor until you get a paste. It does not have to be totally smooth, just broken down. You may add the juice of an orange if your dates are dry.

5. Mix your dates into the dry mixture until fully combined. You can add more liquid if the mixture does not come together easily (I had to add a tablespoon of water).

6. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Press your bar mixture into the tray in an even layer. Score your bars.

I stuck them in the freezer for 15 minutes and then transferred them using the parchment paper to a cutting board which made them very easy to cut and portion out. We are also storing them in  the fridge cause the portion is enough that it will take us a couple days to eat them.

Added health bonus: Chili and Cinnamon are known to stoke your metabolism. Cocoa has antioxidant power. Almonds are packed with protein and healthy fat that slow the absorption of sugars into your system. Dates are full of fiber and energy. YEAH for REAL and GOOD food!

Let me know how it turns out for you.