Recipes

Building Blocks: 2 Ingredient Recipes

Hey Fit Family!

The road to Health is paved with good intentions…

The best way to develop clean eating habits for the long term is to start with BASIC ingredients that you recognize!
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Love Pizza?
Don’t deny yourself the things you love! Try this simple recipe that cuts out loads of unsavory ingredients in take out pizza:

1 C of Plain Greek Yogurt
1.5 C of Self-Rising Flour

Knead the dough for 8-10 minutes. Create your pizza shape and top with choice ingredients. Bake at 500 degrees 10-12 minutes.
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Pudding the right way?

Soak 2 TBSP of Chia Seeds in 1 C Almond Milk for at least 10 minutes. Make it smooth by blending or sweeter by adding a little honey. An Omega-3 and Protein rich snack!
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Banancakes!

Blend 1 Ripe Banana with 2 eggs until slightly frothy. Batter will be thin. Play around with toppings or roll them up with Greek Yogurt and Fruit!

and let’s be honest, pancakes are awesome – so here’s another recipe to try!

Blend 1 Ripe Banana with 1 C of Oats for thicker, more filling pancakes.
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Chicken + Salsa

Layer 3 – 4 Chicken Breasts in a slow cooker with a jar of salsa on top. Cook on low for 4+ hours and you’ve got ready to serve chicken for tacos or over rice, Mexican chicken salad, or get creative with your own idea!
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Homemade Snack Bars

In a food processor (an essential kitchen tool to make clean eating easier!) pulse together 1 part Dates and 1 part Oats. Combine until they are the consistency of jam (add just a little bit of hot water if too dry). Press the mixture into a 1/2″ deep pan and freeze for 1 – 2 hours.

Cut it into bars for a super-quick whole food snack for energy on the go!
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Until next time, remember to keep it simple at first! Nothing derails your best-laid intentions faster than jumping into the deep end before you know how to swim! Build up your repertoire one simple recipe at a time.

It’s Easy as 1, 2, 3…

Today we are going to highlight ONE ingredient recipes!
wait is that a recipe or just food..?

Food…in a different way!

Hard-Boiled Eggs are one nearly essential source of simplicity for anyone interested in building healthy eating habits. Protein at breakfast is sometimes a challenge. Cereal? Nope. Bagels? Not really… Even oatmeal? Only about 6g of protein per 27g of carbs!
Enter: Hard-Boiled Eggs. 7g of protein; 5g of fat; ZERO carbs. Worried about the fat? Egg whites contain over half the protein of the egg, and NO fat nor carbs. Adding these into your diet is an easy way to boost your protein (which is essential for those cutting it close on calorie intake), and help you make better choices the easy way.

Chickpeas – Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Drain chickpeas and blot with a paper towel to dry, then toss in olive oil and a little salt (or cayenne/paprika if you like it spicier!). Bake about 35-40 minutes until browned and crunchy! Delicious

Grab a Date! No, not that kind…The sugar addiction is very real, and when you get hit with that craving it is hard to ignore. Dates – unlike processed sugar – are a natural, whole sweetener complete with fiber, antioxidants, potassium and magnesium (all major sources of “craving” feelings). Snack on a date to satisfy your sweet tooth, add sweetness to a protein shake, or re-fuel during an endurance activity (running/cycling)!

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Now, into the freezer!

Banana “Nice” Cream they call it: Take your ripe/over-ripe bananas and freeze them overnight. Peel and cut into 1″ chunks for the food processor or blender, and blend about 1 minute or until they become a smooth, creamy, frozen dessert! Top with blueberries, a little cocoa powder or even peanut butter! Whatever floats your boat.

Or perhaps you prefer sorbet? Watermelon when frozen and pureed makes a delicious, scoopable delight. Freeze on a baking pan to avoid them clumping together and puree them in batches. Pack the puree into a bread loaf pan or other container for storage.

Grapes make an excellent frozen treat as well! Flash freeze about 10 minutes on a cookie sheet (so they do not all clump together when you transfer to freezer bag). The texture and taste is fresh and pleasing, especially on a hotter day.

That’s all for now!
Look out next week for TWO Ingredient recipes!

K.I.S.S. – Keep It Simple for Success!!

Keep. It. Simple. Stupid.

Great advice; hurts my feelings every time.

The more complex your strategy, the harder it is to execute. Especially when we are trying to build NEW habits, it is extremely important that we pace ourselves and keep it SIMPLE! This week we wanted to share some great, high protein, high veggie recipes to help you make good choices throughout the day!

Go shopping! You will only need: cottage cheese, plain Greek yogurt, eggs, chicken, tuna, lemons/limes and raw vegetables/avocado.

Classic Cottage Cheese Dip:
Don’t run away yet! Cottage cheese haters must give this dip a try before knocking it! Mix it all together and dip your fresh veggies (carrots, celery, peppers, radishes, broccoli, cauliflower, etc)

  • 1 c Cottage Cheese
  • 1 c Plain Greek Yogurt
  • Dill Weed, Celery Salt, Onion Powder to taste
  • tiny pinch of Sugar

** Take the leftover dip and toss in chopped veggies for a high protein salad on the go!

Classic Protein Pancakes:
Who doesn’t love pancakes?! Get funky with your add-ins – berries, cooked apple, peanut butter, raisins, cinnamon, honey – you name it! Blend these three ingredients below to make your batter and bust out the griddle.

  • 1/2 c Rolled Oats
  • 1/2 c Cottage Cheese
  • 3 Eggs

Simple Chicken Salad
Avocado and Plain Greek Yogurt are an excellent swap for the mayonnaise in traditional chicken salad, and dare we say it may have a better texture and taste. Mix it all up for an easy go-to To-Go recipe! (Quantities will depend on desired consistency and how much veggies you add-in)

  • Avocado
  • Plain Greek Yogurt
  • Chopped Chicken
  • Onion (preferably red)
  • Lime Juice
  • Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder to taste

*Add an assortment of Veggies, Craisins, Chopped Almonds – whatever you like! Or swap the Chicken for Tuna and try a whole different flavor profile!*

See the link for this recipe below:
http://www.organizeyourselfskinny.com/2014/06/18/avocado-and-greek-yogurt-chicken-salad-no-mayonnaise/

 

Cancer Fighting Foods

How many of you worked cabbage into your diet after last week’s blog post? If your answer is no, then maybe we have some other, more tasty options for you!

In honor of October being breast Cancer awareness month, let’s talk about a few more Cancer fighting foods. Look no further than your fridge for these healthy warriors.

Broccoli

All cauriferous veggies have cancer fighting properties, but broccoli has a decent amount of sulforaphane, a potent compund that flushes out chemicals involved in causing cancer and boosts protective enzymes in the body.

Berries

These cancer-fighers are packed with phytonutrients. Particularly, black raspberries contain high concentrations of phytochemicals, called anthocyanins. Anthocyanins aid in slowing down the growth of premalignant cells, keeping new blood vessels from forming (potentially feeding a cancerous tumor). Add a half a cup a day to your diet for overall health benefits

Tomatoes

A juicy red tomato is the best dietary source of lycopene. Lycopene is a carotenoid that gives tomatoes their red hue. And that’s good news, because lycopene was found to stop endometrial cancer cell growth in a study inNutrition and Cancer.

broccoliblackraspberriestomato

Give Cabbage A Chance!

As we almost reach October, the month of breast cancer awareness, let’s learn a few new healthy facts. This week, we start with the EVER SO EXCITING….cabbage!

A member of the cancer-fighting cruciferous family is CABBAGE! Cabbage is not only rich in antioxidants, but also a good source of vitamin c and manganese. These traits are similar to cauliflower. After all, they do say that cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college degree!

Red cabbage has a much higher concentration of protective polyphenols. According to Dr. Greger, from NutritionFacts.org, RED CABBAGE contains the most nutrient density per penny spent!

Get creative with your cabbage by trying a healthy version of a Chinese chicken cabbage salad, sautéed bok choy, or roasted cabbage slices.

cabbage

Do I Really Need Protein?

We get this question a lot at all our Ellipse Fitness locations. Hands down, the answer is YES. If you are looking for results and want to be successful at the time you spend at our gyms, protein is essential.

Protein is an important component of every cell in the body. Hair and nails are mostly made of protein. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues. You also use protein to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals. Protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.

In addition to this, one of the best methods to change your entire physique through building lean muscle and burning fat is by consuming protein for fat loss. Protein helps curb your appetite and speed up your metabolism, it also helps you maintain muscle while losing fat. Sculpted muscles are what gives you that “toned”, healthy, athletic look.

Lucky for you, our locations sell Bio-available, minimal ingredients, gluten free, and hormone free protein. It also contains a digestive enzyme blend that does not allow the protein to cause bloating or gas. Get your hands on some of our protein to enhance your results and improve your health and wellness.

 

Shake It Up

Every weekend we’ve been posting our Shake It Up recipes on Facebook. Each shake is jam pack with different ingredients that coordinate smoothly and nutritiously with our Ellipse Fitness Protein Powders. These recipes are fun because they’re not your average mixtures. Take the Peanut Butter and Jelly Shake for example. This might sound a bit off-putting, but don’t knock it until you’ve tried it! Here are a few of our favorites that we’ve shared with you. Keep your eyes peeled for new recipes each weekend on our Facebook page!

Snickerdoodle

  • 8 oz unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 scoop Chocolate Ellipse Protein Powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 5 ice cubes
  • And Blend!

Raspberry Mint Chocolate

  • 8 oz unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 scoop of Chocolate Ellipse Protein Powder
  • 30 frozen raspberries
  • 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
  • 5 ice cubes
  • Blend!

Banana Split

  • 8 oz. unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 scoop Chocolate Ellipse Protein Powder
  • 1 small banana (6 inches)
  • 1 tbsp natural peanut butter
  • 4 ice cubes
  • Blend until smooth!

Enjoy!

Healthy Snacking

Coach Cujo at Ellipse Fitness Allouez started with us only last month! Since his first day, he has wowed us and graced us with his great knowledge. Cujo is ACSM certified as a Exercise Physiologist. Today, we’ve decided to share with you this awesome information Cujo brought to his studio in Allouez. Here’s what he had to say about HEALTHY SNACKING! (Save this information and use it to your advantage during cravings!)

“Healthy Snacking is almost imperative to master if you want to achieve your health and fitness goals. If you go through your workout with little or no food before and/or after exercising you won’t get the full benefits of the workout, and you’ll likely have more soreness and fatigue than you should. If your body begins ‘starving’ it will go into survival mode and pack on more fat from the meals you do eat. And finally, if you mentally deprive yourself of all your cravings you will eventually quit whatever routine you are building – or you will go crazy trying to stick to it!”

Here are a few tips for things people commonly experience:

1. Are you feeling light-headed or weak during or immediately following your workout?

Try having a snack with some healthy fats and carbs, but also a high level of protein 1 – 2 hours before your workout. This will ensure your body has the proper fuel to engage in rigorous physical activity

2. Are you suffering from extreme soreness for 24-48 hours following your workout?

Supplying your body with a source of complete protein immediately after exercise – within 1 hour, and the sooner the better – can often drastically reduce muscle soreness. If time and convenience are a limiting factor for you, try a BCAA (Branch-Chain Amino Acid) supplement that can quickly be mixed with water. During strength/power exercises your muscle fibers are literally tearing, and protein is required for them to recover and grow to prevent future muscle soreness.

3. Are you having a hard time putting your finger on what exactly it is that you are craving?

You may just be thirsty! Keep water near by and easily accessible at all times! Sometimes when you are dehydrated your body will send signals to eat what is in front of you, because it contains water! Water is 100% integral to a properly functioning body. If you are dehydrated, nothing from working out to excellent nutritional habits will help you achieve your goals!

Craving this? Substitute that!

Salty! (french fries, potato chips, etc)
Try some edamame (boiled and sprinkled with sea salt), raw snap peas (snow peas), or raw nuts! (roasted/salted nuts are ok too as long as you can control portions)

Greasy! (burger, hot dog, fried cheese)
Instead reach for smoked salmon or beef jerky – both of which don’t require refrigeration before opening! Also, a slice or two of cheese with some grapes or apple slices can just as well satisfy that craving!

Sweet! (you get the picture)
Chocolate? Try a couple small pieces of 50% or more Dark Chocolate! Cookies? A couple of figs or dates might do the trick. Ice cream? Try blending chick peas or frozen bananas with peanut butter and a few semi-sweet chocolate chips and vanilla extract for a healthier alternative.

Alcohol! (also bread)
Oatmeal or granola, nuts, or dark leafy greens can provide good substitutes for the micronutrients you might be craving.

Maybe you are just bored or need to unwind? Try a bath (add Epsom Salt for sore muscles!), go for a walk at sunset or any other activity that gets fresh air into your lungs, and if it’s too cold? Play a game with a friend, child or spouse that forces you to think a little!

If you find that nutrition is one thing that you keep getting stuck on, ask about our Results in 42 program! 6-weeks of working with a coach to get back on track and pick up some new tips along the way.

Healthy and Easy Grill Recipe

What’s even better than Summertime?

Summertime Grilling!

We just can’t get enough of being outside this time of year, especially those of us in the Midwest who understand how cold it can get. So when it’s July and August, we are not complaining!

Here’s a great recipe for on the grill to keep your Summer hot! This is not your typical grilled steak or chicken breast recipe . What’s the best about grilled shrimp is that it feels fancy! It’s unlike “the usuals” for most families. Check it out…and this one is made easy with no mess! Thank goodness for the geniuses at Food Network, right!?

Ingredients

2 large bell peppers, sliced 1/2-inch thick
1 large onion, sliced 1/2-inch thick
1 bunch scallions, quartered crosswise
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Kosher salt
1 1/4 pounds extra-large peeled and deveined shrimp, tails removed
2 limes, halved
Twelve 6-inch flour tortillas
1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves and tender stems
Salsa and chopped avocado for serving is optional, but oh so good!

You’ll also need: 18-inch-wide heavy duty foil & a GRILL.

Plan of Action!

  • Prepare a grill for medium-high heat.
  • Throw together the onions, scallions, bell pepper, oil, chile powder, cumin and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a large bowl.
  • Tear two 18-inch pieces of 18-inch-wide heavy duty foil. Spread the vegetable bowl mixture on one piece of foil, leaving a few inches of exposed foil as a border.
  • Arrange the shrimp on top of the veggies in a single layer and then squeeze limes over the entire thing.
  • Top with the remaining piece of foil, lining up the edges. Fold the edges and crimp tightly to make a leak-proof packet.
  • Tear two 18-inch pieces of 18-inch-wide heavy duty foil. Arrange the tortillas, overlapping slightly, on one piece of foil. Top with the remaining piece of foil, lining up the edges. Fold the edges and crimp tightly to make another packet.
  • Put the shrimp packet on the grill, close the grill lid and cook 12 minutes (do not turn the packet over). The packet should puff up and look like a pillow.
  • Slide from the grill onto a baking sheet using tongs. Set aside and let rest while you heat up the tortillas. Put the tortilla pack on the grill and cook until warm, about 2 minutes per side.
  • Carefully open the shrimp packet (hot steam will escape). The shrimp should be pink and cooked through and the onions and peppers just tender.
  • Scatter the cilantro over the shrimp.
  • Serve with the warm tortillas and salsa and avocado, if desired.

 

This recipe is from Television Food Network. Checkout Food Network Kitchen for more amazing recipes and tips from the kitchen.

Healthy Summer Options

Summertime is all about being outside…at least in the Midwest! We cherish our Summer months and we head out to the patio whenever possible. The issue with our frequency of grilling out with family and friends is that these settings almost always come with potato chips, dips, sugary snacks or cocktails, and beers. Today, I’d like to give you an alternative for these Summertime classics.

The Potato Chip & Dip Dilema

Potato chips can, and should, be avoided when you want to live a healthy lifestyle. The switch is easy, for any starchy chip…turn to a vegetable instead. A common mistake is that when snacking on vegetables, many go overboard with its counterpart….the dip. Instead of the cheese, sour cream, or dill dips that contain unhealthy fats, hummus is the answer. To be honest, it’s smart to skip the snacks all together and wait for your main dish! If you’re going to have it anyways, there’s no need to over indulge while you’re hanging out on the patio.

Sugary Snacks

If you’re going to eat something sugary, make it fruit whenever possible. Alternatively, here are some delicious recipes for your sweet tooth.

Triple Berry Yogurt Bark

Adapted from: The $5 Dinner Mom

Yield – 8 snack servings

Preparation Time – 15 minutes

Cooking Time – 2 hours in the freezer to freeze

Ingredients

  • 32 oz. plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 pint raspberries
  • 1 pint blueberries
  • about 1 cup strawberries, sliced
  • Parchment paper

Directions

  • Line a 9×13-inch baking dish with parchment paper.
  • In a mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt and honey.
  • Pour and spread the yogurt mixture into the base of the lined baking dish.
  • Sprinkle the different berries and gently press into the yogurt.
  • Freeze for at least 2 hours or until completely frozen.
  • Use a knife to make the first “break” and then you can break with your hands. Break into serving size pieces and serve cold.

Banana and Peanut Butter Bites

Use browning bananas before they go to waste! Make little peanut butter and banana bites and put them in the freezer for 2 hours. Sweet, salty, cheap and easy to do!

Cocktails

If it’s a cocktail kind of night, you’ve got to eliminate the sugars. Stick to sugar free options, avoid mixers other than club soda or flavored sparkling waters with zero calories. Here are some options:

  1. Cucumber Fizz Cocktail: Replace the high carb tonic water in this drink with either a sugar-free tonic water that uses artificial sweetener for a no-carb version. For a lower-carb version, use an agave-based tonic water like Q-tonic that has 5.5 grams of carbs per 4 ounces compared to the 16.5 grams of carbs per 4 ounces in regular tonic.
  2. Healthy Green Tea Martini: Green tea’s benefits are endless. In a mixed drink, it’s a light way to bring some antioxidants into your party. Directions: Combine equal parts green tea (brewed and chilled) with vodka or gin in a martini shaker. Add in juice from a whole lime and 1 tbsp. of agave nectar. Stir ingredients until blended. Strain into martini glass. Garnish with a slice of lime.

There are endless healthy bites you can find and use as alternatives to the fatty and sugary snacks that are usually at patio parties! Being healthy doesn’t mean you have to skip the fun. Being healthy means you need to think ahead, plan accordingly, and practice self control. Enjoy the weather!