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
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)!
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:
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?
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 here – She 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!!!
This past weekend I enjoyed a super fun get together with friends, that I’m describing as a High-Raw Soiree. Here is what I brought as my dishes to pass (Raw, Vegan & Organic):
~Crispy Sprouted Chips (to dip in the aforementioned items)
~Chinese Hemp Noodles (one of the best dishes to take to pass at a party)
~Sweet Dreams Hemp Cookies
~Summer Fresh Lemon Cheesecake (a total hit! I can’t wait to share the recipe in my next class)
We did a little celebrating of Cinco de Mayo – complete with margaritas (not all Raw, but made with Raw agave, fresh lime and some other, shall I say, spirited ingredients). The hosts of the party had a delicious kale salad alongside some lovely steamed green beans for us. It was loads of fun…especially when we were singing along to Earth, Wind and Fire at the top of our lungs (many margaritas later).
Daily Conversation Question:
In which activity would you like a lesson from an expert?
*For those who don’t know, I’m adding a “conversation question” to my blog posts. They’re from these cute “conversation starter” cards I found at a little boutique. Sometimes it can be uncomfortable when meeting new people, or if there is silence while around co-workers, or maybe you’re meeting your boyfriend/girlfriend’s parents for the first time and you want to ensure stimulating conversation. These are fun and made for just that!
Truthfully…it’s hard to have only one salad in the top spot, so I’m claiming that this salad has earned the right to be in the top 5 at least. It’s refreshing, gourmet, stylin’ and everyone will want seconds and thirds because the chewy, crunchy, savory and sweet will have you begging for more.
Spring and Summer are popular seasons for enjoying salads. This one is perfect for any occasion, whether you want to:
~ Make yourself a gorgeous salad. (It can be a “starter” for your meal or the whole meal itself.)
~ Serve it to your family. (Get many “oohs and ahhs” while you’re at it.)
~ Show it off to friends. (This salad gives you total bragging rights! It’ll make you very popular.)
I served this for the salad course at my last Mandala Dinner event, and probably received the same number of emails requesting this recipe as I did for the Spinach Thyme Soup Recipe (available in May’s email newsletter – sign up here).
Making the Salad: There are few components you’ll need to make in advance, so plan accordingly. I’m known for bragging that my ebooks and recipes are EASY and FAST! Even though this recipe involves a little more work than the typical chopping found in a salad, the work is acceptable for two reasons…1) the salad is a-freakin’-mazing and 2) the work you do for a couple of the items (seeds and leeks) is for making components to the salad that can be stored for future salads; hence, the second, third and maybe fourth time you make the salad, you’ll only toss together the dressing and leafy greens.
You’ll need the following for each small serving of salad:
2 cups spring mix lettuce
1 tablespoon dried cranberries
1 tablespoon Sweet Vanilla Rain Sunflower Seeds (in my Sides-n-Snacks ebook)*
1 tablespoon Dried Leeks (recipe below)
2-3 tablespoons Olive Vinaigrette Dressing (recipe below)
*You can use any sweetened raw, sprouted and dehydrated seeds, but this simple recipe of mine is one of the main components that brings this salad together. (Special flavors!)
Dried Leeks: Slice 2-3 leeks very thinly, rinse well and place in a bowl of water to soak for about 30 minutes. Drain and rinse well. Place the leeks in a shallow bowl with 2 tablespoons olive oil, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan crystal salt. Let these marinate for about 15-minutes. Transfer them to a dehydrator tray (shaking off any excess oil over the bowl beforehand) and dehydrate until crispy – which is approximately 10-15 hours. Note: Make extra dried leeks so you have plenty on hand. Store them in a glass mason jar in your refrigerator for future salads and soups.
Olive Vinaigrette Dressing
Yield 1 1/4 cups
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons raw agave nectar
1 clove garlic
1/4 teaspoon Himalayan crystal salt
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives (or any olives of your choice)
Blend all of the ingredients for the dressing except for the basil and olives. Add the basil and olives, and pulse your blender to break them up, but not to blend them completely. This gives the dressing a lovely texture and color. Put your salads together with all of the ingredients above and enjoy!
If you’re in the Phoenix area during the weekend of May 17, you’ll want to register for our next class, Easy Raw Vegan Desserts.
It’s going to be sooooooo much delicious fun as I teach you how to make Easy, Wonderful, Mind-Blowing Raw Vegan Desserts. By the end of class, we’ll have our Raw Vegan Sweets Buzz going on and feel absolutely amazing! Seats are going fast so register today to guarantee yourself a seat.
Okay everyone! I’m ready to share my Spinach Thyme Soup Recipe. For those of you who don’t know, I served this for the soup course at the last Mandala Dinner event, and I’ve received email after email requesting the recipe. Everyone, including the non-raw foodies who attended the dinner, L-O-V-E-D it.
So, I’m ready to share it, and it’ll arrive in your email inbox soon, if you’re a subscriber of my email newsletter. If you’re not…what the hell are ya waiting for???…get to it by going to my website here. Oh, and by the way…I have also received MANY requests for the salad recipe I served that evening, so I’ll be sharing that soon, too! With food this delicious, it’s so dang EASY eating Raw Vegan!
Wednesday, April 30th, 2008
You know those kinds of things that you wait to do, either because you’re too busy, too lazy or something of the sort? I’ve had situations where I heard about something that could make life better or easier, but since it took some time to research the “pros” and “cons,” I kept putting it off. My Netflix Membership is a perfect example of such a thing (as well as my Blackberry Curve, but that’s for another post!).
We used to rent quite a few movies from Blockbuster, and since the store is relatively close, I saw no need to change to Netflix (although I admit – I was awfully curious when I kept seeing my neighbors pull those red envelopes from their mailboxes). Plus, I didn’t want to get stuck in some kind of monthly program that I wouldn’t use. But, after trying to find a number of movies that Blockbuster didn’t have, I went to Netflix to check it out. Wow, was I amazed! Not only did they have all the movies I was looking for, but I’ll save a lot of money by using them instead of renting through Blockbuster. (I think Blockbuster does have a mail-type program, but Netflix has the reputaion for having the biggest source of movies, so I’m sticking with them.)
Here is the take away…I love Netflix and highly recommend it. There’s something very cool (and fun!) about going to my mailbox and having a “goodie” in there waiting for me a couple times a week. It gives me something to look forward to, and that is plain FUN!
Through Netflix, we rented an amazing documentary
. If you haven’t seen it, YOU MUST!!! It’s beautiful, educational, fun, scary, eco-adventure-like and everyone needs to see this. Get educated about sharks like never before. Here is proof of the amazing info you’ll learn:
My boyfriend wants me to learn how to scuba dive and I used to be terrified…because of sharks. Not anymore! This movie makes me want to hug a shark (if only that were possible – ahhh, I can dream). Seriously though, sharks are incredible creatures NEEDING OUR HELP! This terrific documentary has already won 26 international awards
!!! Check out the details about Sharkwater here
and then rent it at Netflix (this documentary is getting so big that it’s possible Blockbuster will/does carry it – either way – you gotta check it out!).
I have been craving spumoni ice cream lately, so I had to come up with an alternative – Raw Vegan style. Here it is! Super delicious and yummy – enjoy!
*Side note: I hope it goes without saying that I only use organic ingredients whenever possible, which basically means that 99% of everything I create is organic. There are instances where I simply can’t procure it – so I either try to find an organic substitute of some sort or I begrudgingly use conventional.
Spumoni Dessert Smoothie
Yield 4 cups
1 cup raw shelled pistachios, soaked 1-hour, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups water
1 (10oz) bag frozen cherries
1/4 cup Raw agave nectar
3 tablespoons Navitas Raw chocolate powder (my favorite!)
1/2 teaspoon cherry extract
pinch Himalayan crystal salt
Blend until smooth and creamy – enjoy!
Update: My class over the weekend was a huge success! We rocked the house at Whole Foods with a sold-out class and had a blast. Get ready for another incredible class May 17 when I teach some of my favorite Raw Vegan dessert recipes.
Wednesday, April 23rd, 2008
Happy Earth Day!
It’s been an exciting day for Kristen’s Raw, as we celebrated Earth Day giving out delicious samples of my Sweet Dreams Hemp Cookies. The coolest part was seeing so many familiar faces stop by Whole Foods to say hello AND all of the new people I turned on to Manitoba Harvest Hemp Seeds (hemp is one big-time earth-friendly crop you know).
EXPOSED – Major New Study…Great GM Crops Myth!
As my boyfriend said when passing this news along to me…Here is a great big kick in the nuts to Monsanto and their freaky GM foods! Take THAT Monsanto!!! Read this GREAT article!