Friday, May 16th, 2008

Juicing Sprouts Gives Me Extra Energy

by Kristen Suzanne in exercise, green juice

Today’s juice is definitely kick-ass as far as nutrients go because I filled it with home-grown fresh sprouts. I’m feeling extra energized and strong after drinking just 1/2 a glass, and looking forward to going to the gym later this afternoon to work off some of this energy…and, speaking of working out, I received a great question on my blog yesterday about my feelings toward muscle /physical fitness in comparing my pre-raw-vegan days to now (Extra-High-Raw, All-Vegan). I plan on addressing this in a post in the next few days, because I do have some thoughts to share.

Sproutin’ Kick Ass Green Juice
Yield 2 quarts

2 cups water
4 cups sprouts
juice of 2 lemons
juice of 2 oranges
5 big radishes
2 golden delicious apples
1 bunch parsley
1 bunch celery
1 cucumber

Blend all of the ingredients (might take two batches in the blender to get it all done) and strain into a large bowl using a nutmilk bag.

Today’s workout
Legs (3 straight sets, 15 reps)
Walking lunges with dumbbells
Single leg squat with dumbbells
Wall sit (60 seconds in length, 3X, with 60 second rest between sets)

Cardio
Nice long walk to stretch my leg muscles

Daily Conversation Question:
Who would you like to trade places with for one month?

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Friday, May 16th, 2008

Baby Mama Movie & Raw Vegan Restaurant

by Kristen Suzanne in exercise
I went and saw the movie Baby Mama last night (very funny), and guess what? They eat at a Raw Vegan restaurant (or at least they “try”). Only problem is that I can’t truly write about it because I went to the bathroom during the majority of the scene! WHO KNEW??? – haha! Apparently, it’s not the most glowing example of a Raw Vegan restaurant, but hey, I’m still stoked that they included it.

Sadly, I’m all out of Organic watermelon :( I’ll stock up when I go to Whole Foods tomorrow, though :)
I’m heading to the gym and here’s my plan:
Weights: Back and Biceps – 4 straight sets, 6-8 reps each

Back
Overhead, wide-grip pull-down
Close grip row

Biceps
Barbell curl
Hammer curls

Cardio
Treadmill (15 min)
Stairstepper (10 min)
Bike (10 min)

Daily Conversation Question: (This is a good one! I’m going to start asking people this all the time.)
What change would you most like to make for your health?
What’s one thing you can do to start moving toward that goal?

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Wednesday, May 14th, 2008

Watermelon – Be Still My Heart!

by Kristen Suzanne in exercise

Anyone who knows me, knows that my all time favorite Raw food is, quite simply, organic watermelon. The gorgeously pink, sweet, refreshing flesh calls my name every summer and I just can’t ever seem to get enough. Each year, as the watermelon season ends, I want to shed a tear because I’m already eagerly anticipating the new season, when watermelon will again usher more sunshine to my life. I love watermelon.

Now that it’s back, you can count on me eating a LOT of it. For example, today, I have eaten nothing but watermelon. Yep, that’s right. (Talk about easy…those of you saying Raw food prep is hard – whatevah!) I carved up a BUNCH and enjoyed it for my breakfast, snack, and lunch so far. I’m going to have a huge fresh green juice in a moment, then I’ll probably have watermelon for dinner and dessert. If I choose something else for dinner, that’s okay, because come sunrise (okay, let’s be serious, I won’t be up at sunrise) but come tomorrow, I’ll be eating it for breakfast, snack, and lunch.

Watermelon rocks my world because it’s alkalizing, low-calorie, refreshing, cleansing & detoxifying, cooling on the body (seriously, who needs air conditioning when you can eat watermelon), and contains lycopene (all you cooked tomato eaters out there searching for lycopene, get it in your watermelon!).

But that’s not all watermelon offersit’s loaded with Vitamin A and has a low glycemic load. Furthermore, because of its extremely hydrating nature (it’s 92% water), it’s known as a “high-volume” food (takes up a lot of space without a lot of calories…this is helpful for those looking to lose weight). Some people even go on a watermelon fast, because it’s so detoxifying and cleansing. Sounds good to me!

Many enjoy blending their watermelon into a smoothie and adding a little of the rind to it. That’s great! According to David Grotto, author of 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life, watermelon rind contains citrulline, an amino acid that promotes nitric oxide production, improving blood flow through the arteries.

Delicious Sassy Treat: Blend the watermelon flesh and freeze in ice cube trays. This makes for one sassy glass of water with the pink cubes in it!

Warning: As far as food combining goes, I’m not known to be militant, although I am mindful of them. However, there is one that I take as gospel and that’s to eat melons alone. So, when I eat watermelon, I only eat watermelon and nothing else with it (for at least a 1/2 hour after taking the last bite of watermelon). It digests super fast, so I don’t have to wait long before eating other foods. And, if I’ve already eaten a meal (especially one that contained fat), then I wait at least a couple of hours before eating watermelon.

My workout: I’m heading to the gym in a short while (I’m receiving loads of emails asking me to post my workout routine). I’m bringing a bottle of fresh watermelon smoothie to drink (watermelon blended, that’s it).

Today I’ll be working on Chest and Triceps, straight sets, 8 reps/set:
Chest
Flat bench
Incline bench
Decline bench

Triceps
V-bar
Overhead rope pull
Bench Dips
I’ll also do a little cardio on the treadmill.

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Monday, May 12th, 2008

Iron Man – Again?

by Kristen Suzanne in Uncategorized

Yep…I saw it for a third time – it’s so good! We took my boyfriend’s mom to see it and she really liked it, too. Come to find out, my boyfriend knows the guy who designed Iron Man’s suit in the movie (as well as some other things). Isn’t that cool?

As for other things I’ve been doing lately – preparing for next weekend’s class, Easy Raw Vegan Desserts. I love creating and testing recipes for classes, especially dessert classes! Yum! As for my most recent activities, I’m currently sitting in bed with my laptop, answering emails, watching TV, drinking a big, fresh green juice, and just hanging out. Happy Mom’s Day to all the moms out there.

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Friday, May 9th, 2008

Kristen Suzanne – A Future Mom

by Kristen Suzanne in breastfeeding, home school

No, it’s not anytime real soon – so don’t get too excited (although I must admit I’m very excited at the idea of it in the future!). However, here are some things I’m researching to get prepared.



1) Having the birth at home with a midwife
I was introduced to this idea after reading a phenomenal book by John Robbins,
Reclaiming Our Health (I highly recommend this book, it’ll blow you away). Since then, I saw The Business of Being Born (also available through Netflix) and my resolve intensified greatly to give birth at home (or in the very least by using a birth center).



2) Insurance doesn’t cover maternity
WTF? This is something I didn’t know until recently. The good news is that having a home birth is supposed to be less expensive than a hospital.

3) Circumcision
Last year I saw a
Penn & Teller
: Bullshit show (it aired on Showtime, but I watched it online. It appears to have been taken down though). Their premiere episode, Circumcision, was a fascinating, yet comical at times, investigation into the controversial medical procedure that gets people asking, “to snip or not to snip?” It might not be so crazy to say “no” to this procedure anymore. Thus, the days of a boy feeling weird in the locker room are probably not going to be much of an issue in the future, if people continue to elect not to have the procedure done to their sons.

4) To Vaccinate or Not To Vaccinate
I saw an episode of
Larry King Live with Jennifer McCarthy and
she talked about her concern over the fact that in the recent years we’ve added so many new vaccinations and the speed to which we schedule them could be extremely harmful, with the possibility of being linked to autism.

5) Homeschooling – A Smart Microtrend
Homeschooling has become a
microtrend in itself (just like veganism). It’s exciting to see this option gaining popularity with people taking their children’s education into their own hands to make it the best possible. In a time when… 1) more people are working from home, 2) amazing technology like the Internet makes this easy to do, and 3) families are growing tired of our shitty educational system…this is no longer a “fringe” lifestyle.

In fact, I was amazed a few months back, while teaching a Raw food class, when the topic came up and I had a handful of Scottsdale moms (all very normal, well-to-do ladies) who homeschool their kids – and they didn’t even know each other! I say “Scottsdale Moms” and describe them as such, because there was a time when homeschooling was associated with either bible-thumpers or granola-backpacking-barefoot-tree-huggers. On the contrary, these women, and their families, are far from that.

As far as our teaching skills…well, my man is wicked smart with an MBA from Wharton (he’s brilliant), a mind like a steel-trap (he remembers everything he reads and hears), and he has the patience of a monk (he’s going to be such a good dad). Me? Well, I’m college educated myself (University of Michigan), I’m resourceful and well-versed in many subjects, I’m super fun, I have the time to dedicate, and I can make a mean-green-smoothie! We feel like we’ll do a world of good for our kids if we homeschool.

6) Breastfeeding – I know I’ll do it…but for how long?
It’s my understanding that some women in the United States do this for the first 6-12 months typically. Yet, in other parts of the world, they breastfeed for at least a few years.

Check out this NEW study suggesting that breastfeeding is associated with increased intelligence!

7) The Diet!
Of course, my children will be living a
High-Raw-All-Vegan lifestyle. The concern can be with letting other people babysit (family, friends). I’ve experienced, first hand, people making food for me, and thinking it follows along with my lifestyle, only to find out there was an ingredient included which wasn’t vegan. Oops.

I will end with one of my favorite quotes because, although some of the practices mentioned in this post can seem foreign to many, I can’t help but think that they feel very natural to me. I love what Gandhi said, Be the change you wish to see in the world.

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Thursday, May 8th, 2008

Raw Recipe: Creamy Zinger Garlic Spread

by Kristen Suzanne in raw recipes

Today, I’m sharing with you another great recipe – this time it’s a delicious cheese spread perfect for crunchy crackers, fresh veggies, or adding a tablespoon (or two) to your next salad dressing to sass it up with a delightful gourmet flavor. In my last email newsletter (sign up here), I gave you a fabulously popular soup recipe of mine featuring Garlic Red Pepper Miso (soy-free). Well, if you bought a jar to make the soup, I wanted to give you another recipe in which to use it. This is quick, delicious, and versatile. Enjoy!

Creamy Zinger Garlic Spread
Yield 1 1/2 cups

  • 1 cup raw cashews, macadamia or pine nuts (or a mix)
  • filtered water for soaking the nuts
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Garlic Red Pepper Miso
  • 1 tablespoon light miso
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil
  • a little water, if needed to help blend

Place the nuts in a bowl with enough filtered water to cover by an inch. Let them soak like this for up to an hour. Strain off the water and rinse the nuts. Blend all of the ingredients until creamy in your blender (or food processor) and enjoy this gourmet-flavored deliciousness. Creamy Zinger Garlic Spread will stay fresh for up to five days in your refrigerator (stored in an airtight container). It also freezes well.

*TIPFor those watching your nut intake, here is a tip for reducing the fat in spreads such as this, without compromising the exquisite experience. Replace half of the nuts a peeled zucchini. Keep in mind that fat helps mellow flavors, so by reducing the fat, you might need to reduce a few of the more “flavorful” ingredients. For example, I’d start with 1/2 tablespoon of each of the miso(s) and look for a clove of garlic that isn’t too big. Start small because you can always add more, if desired.

Daily Conversation Question:
Which temptation do you try the hardest to resist?

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Wednesday, May 7th, 2008

Iron Man Drinking a Green Smoothie: BOOH-YAH!

by Kristen Suzanne in Uncategorized

I’m a blogging queen lately…you have to check in a couple of times a day just to keep up with me – haha :)

I just saw the movie, Iron Man, for the second time – yup, you could say I loved it! It’s received many (deserved!) rave reviews. If you haven’t seen it, then you’re missing out on a non-stop adventure of action, fun, and excitement. Both times the audience had moments of laughing out loud, clapping, or exclaimed “Yeah(s)!”

And, total kudos to Robert Downey, Jr., Iron Man, drinking a green smoothie. I was stoked when I saw that!

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Wednesday, May 7th, 2008

Blissed Out Running & Chocolate Runner’s Smoothie

I’ve been doing extra running on the treadmill lately. In the past, a typical cardio session would include me switching back and forth between running on the zero incline and walking fast on a very high incline (not usually running for longer than a few minutes at a time). Basically, because I find it pretty damn hard to run. I always have.

Lately, however, I’m finding myself running for minutes and minutes on end. And, it was during one of these recent episodes of “continued” running, that I found myself totally blissed out, unaware of the time passing or the music flowing into my ears from the headphones connected to my nano. Interestingly, the trick was that I started looking at things as if I were seeing them for the first time. I pretended I was a child looking around the gym and experiencing simple objects and activities anew.

Can you imagine what it’s like looking at something as if you’d never seen it before…like the ceiling fan, the weights, someone working out, the mirrors on the wall, the cables coming down from the ceiling holding a platform suspended in the air that the TVs set on…it’s kind of weird and and cool at the same time. The first time I did this, I realized that about 15 minutes had gone by with me still running. My body was working hard, my breathing was labored, and I was starting to drip sweat, but I had this amazing level of sustained energy coursing through me, pushing me another step. I loved it!

You see, normally, I need to have some really great music on to keep me pumped up in the gym, or at the very least, I need be reading an intriguing magazine while doing some cardio (unless I’m on my rebounder!). But, it seems this isn’t the case anymore because I’m finding neat ways to engage my mind while getting my heart rate up in the gym.


Clearly, after such a superb workout (as described above), my body screams for fuel, and I’m happy to deliver (so easy to do when you live a High Raw, All Vegan Lifestyle such as mine). Here is my newest smoothie, Blissed Out Chocolate Runner’s Smoothie. I’ve been enjoying these post-workout…fantastic and delicious.


Blissed Out Chocolate Runner’s Smoothie

Yield approximately 4 cups

1-2 cups water

2 bananas
1 1/2 cups blueberries
1 1/2 cups spinach
3 tablespoons Chia Seeds
2 tablespoons Hemp Protein Powder
2 tablespoons Raw Chocolate Powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (of course!)
1-2 cups ice, optional, but especially refreshing after getting hot and sweaty!

Blend all of the ingredients until smooth and enjoy (preferably after a great workout)!

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Tuesday, May 6th, 2008

Plant Blood – I’m A Vegan Vampire

by Kristen Suzanne in Uncategorized

PLANT BLOOD
This is what I call my fresh green (or red!) juice. I feel like a Vegan Vampire when I’m drinking the blood from plants – mwe hee ha haa haha (that laugh is supposed to sound chilling and scary, although coming from me, yeah, whatever).

Today’s Plant Blood:
water

3 bunches parsley
4 green apples
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

GGRRRR!!!!! So, now I’m ready to take on the world with Plant Blood coursing through my veins! And, how could I not? My Plant Blood was loaded with parsley, which is filling me with phenomenal nutrition. It’s a powerful detoxifier (and deodorizer – nice!), with plenty of chlorophyll. But that’s not all…parsley contains vitamin C, iron, and many other minerals. And…that’s REALLY not all – According to Jonny Bowden, PhD., C.N.S., the Romans used to chew on parsley sprigs because it would allow them to drink more wine without becoming drunk. Wow. Hhhmmm, I’ll report back to you after I find out if that works.

On a side note…YAY for the Pistons! They are my former home team and I (always!) root for them. Maybe they’re consuming extra parsley too, because they’re rockin’ the house!

Daily Conversation Question:
If you were given money to remodel your house what would you change first?


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Tuesday, May 6th, 2008

Get Your Heart Rate Up And Lose Weight With This!

by Kristen Suzanne in fitness

When it comes to fitness, I’m the kind of gal who typically likes to just get into the gym and do my thing. I lift weights (pretty heavy) and I do my fair share of cardio to get a nice sweat going. I like to change it up though. As with food, variety is a key ingredient to staying motivated with exercise. I mean…who are we kidding? There are usually other things people would rather be doing than exercising – that is until NOW!

Here is one of my favorite ways to exercise while having FUN at the same time. Exercise-Fun? Oxymoron some of you are saying??? I think not! This is the perfect activity for all of you who regard exercise as a 4-letter word (you know who you are). It’s rebounding! This is one of my all-time favorite ways to get my lymph circulating, heart rate up and have FUN at the same time! Seriously.

Having a rebounder in your living room by the TV is a great way to get more exercise into your life without ever having to step foot in a gym if you don’t want to. It doesn’t matter what level of exercise you’re used to (or not used to, I should say – haha).

The proof is in the pudding…It even worked on my mom! She was one of those people who hated exercise (4-letter word is what she’d say to me in response when I would tell her she needs to do it more). True story hereShe went to meet her husband at the gym to work out, but she didn’t feel like exercising because she hated it. So, here is what she did. She arrived at the gym a few minutes early, went to the water fountain and splashed water on her face. Then, when her husband arrived to work out, she said, “WHEW! I’ve been here for a while now, just had a great work out, sweatin’ my butt off, as you can tell. Well, I’m heading home now.”

So, you see…she has always hated exercise until now. Ever since she started jumping on her rebounder, she’s HOOKED! She loves it. It’s helping her lose weight, giving her confidence, and making her feel better than ever.

Here is what she does: Every day while she’s making her juice, she sets her kitchen timer in 15-minute increments. Every time it goes off during her time in the kitchen juicing, she jumps on her rebounder for 5-minutes (that’s all it takes to start getting a good workout). She’ll do this a few times a day and before you know it, she’s had some great physical activity to take her health to a whole new level. It’s quick, fun, and effective. Personally, I like to keep mine in front of the TV so I can jump on it during commercials.

Here’s a popular Rebounder. Have Fun!!!

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