Wednesday, October 17th, 2007
I woke up today wanting more fun with hot peppers. After nibbling on a habanero pepper while driving to the gym, I swear my tongue was sweating. Holy s–t! It was so hot and literally felt as if my tongue was perspiring…seriously. Here is what I’ve learned about foods giving off natural heat…the trick is to embrace the heat. Once you accept that your tongue is burning and on fire, it’s not so bad. I mean, afterall, we’re talking about habanero peppers. Once the lovely endorphins kick in, it’s a walk in the park.
Later in the day I made nori rolls for my boyfriend (not a fan of nori, myself – too “fishy” tasting), while I feasted on various fantastic smoothie concoctions (bananas, apples, celery, jalapeno peppers, sprouts, fresh mint, spinach and raw chocolate – not all in one smoothie. I made a couple using the aforementioned ingredients). I finished the day with a huge salad (the produce section was truly lacking at Wild Oats and Whole Foods today – wtf?). Oh well, my salad consisted of spinach, pea sprouts, carrots and celery topped with delicious Raw Italian Dressing. It doesn’t really matter how simple a salad is when you have a fabulous dressing to go with it. I wanted to slurp up the leftover dressing that glazed the bamboo bowl. So good. And, the more simple a meal, the more properly the food combined. See? The glass is half-full in my mind when the store is lacking produce variety.
I was definitely jazzed once I arrived at the gym…after all, my tongue had a head start in the perspiration department and I was eager for my body to follow (nothing like the reward of a good sweat – and since I’m Raw, my sweat smells lovely if I do say so myself. Uh-oh, is this TMI?). Anyway, the endorphins kicked in and I was all too happy to be at the gym; quite giddy actually. I started doing a little dance between weight lifting sets (making anyone laugh who happened to watch, I’m sure). I was pulling out all of the old moves (the sprinkler, running man, cheese grater and a few I made up). I don’t think anyone regarded me as too crazy. I was sure to laugh while dancing and I had a Reebok step near me so I could hop on between moves. They probably thought it was some fantastic new routine.
Back and biceps (overhead wide-grip pull down, close grip row, overhead rope row, barbell curls, hammer curls). I finished up my weight routine by doing 15 minutes on the eliptical while watching Larry King. (Is the eliptical machine really supposed to be exercise? I have to laugh…I think it’s pretty hard to get a “hard” workout on one of those. It’s adequate for a moderate level of exercise I suppose, which is better than nothing.)
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you’ve imagined.”
~Henry David Thoreau
Monday, October 15th, 2007
Today was another super day in my life even though I awoke quite late again. How can I help it? Saturday night started with a party (yep, I had wine). Then, I came home and stayed up watching the Firefly TV Series on DVD followed by the movie, Serenity until 5am – they are both fantastic, clever, and addicting (clearly…since I stayed up all night watching them).
I was full of energy and I couldn’t wait to get to the gym. I focused my weight routine on chest and tricep exercises (push-ups, cable cross overs, dips, and V-bar push down). Between sets I raised my heart rate by jumping rope. For the last 15 minutes of my workout I rode a stationary bike, while indulging my mind in a magazine sharing the latest gossip on celebrities. (Did I just admit that?)
Breakfast: 4 cups smoothie (2 cups water, 2 cups spinach (packed), 2 large bananas, 1 apple, 2 tsp fresh rosemary (minced), 1/3 habanero pepper)
Lunch/Dinner: Huge salad with a mix of chopped red bell peppers, carrots, celery, cucumber on top of spring lettuce served with scrumptious Raw Italian Dressing
Snack: nibbled on 1/2 habanero pepper
Dessert: my new recipe Easy Chocolate Coconut Sauce drizzled over sliced bananas and chopped almonds (recipe included in this month’s email newsletter…have you subscribed yet? If not, why are you waiting? Visit www.KristensRaw.com to subscribe now.
Addendum: It’s 3:32 am and I just ate a medium size salad (same items as earlier) followed by my swirling energetic Yin Yang Smoothie. The cool and refreshing effect from the frozen bananas (Yin) opposite the spicy hot fire you feel on your tongue and the back of your throat as you swallow (Yang)…well, it’s enough to make anyone feel refreshingly hot.
Yin Yang Smoothie
1 – 2 cups water
3 frozen bananas
3 tablespoons organic raw chocolate powder
3/4 – 1 red jalapeno pepper
Blend all of the ingredients until thick and creamy. Enjoy.
Saturday, October 13th, 2007
I’m a Raw chocolate fan. Period. I was thinking of new smoothie recipes and figured…why not add chocolate to my green smoothie? It is delicious. But, it’s not pretty. I’m trying to come up with a romantic name for it (I think making it French with “au chocolat” should do the trick). It does look like mud (although this is the kind of thing that would be fun to drink around other people). I’m sure I’ll get questions and stares (something with which I can definitely have fun).
Here is the recipe for those looking to add more chocolate to their lives.
1 cup water
1 1/2 cups spinach, packed
3 medium bananas
2 tablespoons raw chocolate powder
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
Blend and enjoy as you take in all of those antioxidants.
I’m sure you know what I’ll be adding to my chocolate smoothie tomorrow…habanero pepper. I love spicy chocolate recipes (there’s a great recipe in my dessert ebook called, Sexed Up Spicy Chocolate Mousse). If you’re interested in my favorite brand of organic raw chocolate powder, check out my website here.
Thursday, October 11th, 2007
WHEWEE! This is one hot smoothie I’m drinking. Talk about waking up! No need for coffee when you eat hot peppers. I thought I’d have some fun with my smoothie today and change it up a bit. I’m drinking a mason jar full of this sassy, hot creation: 1 cup water, 3 medium bananas, 1 big handful of Italian parsley, 1 teaspoon minced rosemary, 1 teaspoon minced marjoram, 1/2 of an habanero pepper. Yes, you read that right! I put 1/2 of an habanero pepper in my smoothie and she is HOT and waking me up! (In case you didn’t know, I don’t do anything half-assed. I’m hard-core…and habanero peppers are no exception). I’m sure if I open my mouth flames will come billowing out Smaug-style. I might not even have to go to the gym at the rate I’m starting to perspire (just kidding, I’m still going to the gym, although I’m sure my metabolism has just been cranked into high gear). Endorphins are kicking in and it feels grreeeaaaat! It’s no wonder I can be caught buying many habanero peppers at a time. The cashier always looks at me quizzically…I can’t help it, they’re addicting. It’s a cheap thrill. Who needs drugs, alcohol, or even chocolate for that matter when you can experience the high from hot peppers? Next time I meet friends for happy hour, I’m pulling one of these out of my purse to nibble on.
Keep this in mind about hot peppers…
~It’s believed that the endorphin release can help relieve PMS. Yay! I know in my own experience, they have also helped fight off headaches (both migraine and sinus!).
~Need help kicking your caffeine habit? I find hot peppers work wonders! The endorphins tackle two issues for you. 1) energy so you don’t miss the caffeine and 2) fight headaches from caffeine withdrawal.
~They warm you up in winter, so if you live in a cold climate and you’re trying to stick with Raw food, add some hot peppers to your diet.
~When trying to eat lower fat foods, throw in hot peppers for excitement. You’ll never miss the fat. Trust me. It’s those lovely endorphins…you feel so good. And I mean soooo good. uh-huh. You have to go through a little pain at the onset from eating them, but it’s worth it. The words “glutton for punishment” are floating around my head. Oh well.
~Be careful when working with hot peppers and don’t touch your face (or any part of your body for that matter!) after chopping peppers. Wash your hands immediately. You can rub olive oil on your fingers before working with them. Or, wear gloves. Personally, I have no patience for the olive oil or the gloves. I live on the edge.
Tuesday, October 9th, 2007
I just arrived home from Wild Oats where I celebrated Oktoberfest by giving out samples for my newest recipe Easy Raw German Chocolate Brownies (donning braids in my hair and drinking kombucha from a German beer stein). Were the brownies a hit? OMG! Yes! People came back for seconds. I had no leftovers to bring home…oh well…I DID stock up my kitchen with fresh produce. Tonight, I’ll eat a gigantic fresh salad with spinach, cucumbers, red bell peppers, apples, lots of fresh herbs, and Rosemary Ranch Dressing.
I read this today when I woke up. What a great way to start the day!
The Essence Of A New Day
“This is the beginning of a new day. You have been given this day to use as you will. You can waste it or use it for good. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day in your life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever; in its place is something that you have left behind…let it be something good.”
Monday, October 8th, 2007
It’s about 3pm and I’m just waking up. I stayed up late watching movies (something to the tune of 4:30am). The night began with going to a late movie, Eastern Promises (starring Viggo Mortensen). Great movie! Yes, I brought along my green smoothie for raw goodness. Once I arrived home, I was jazzed with energy, so I watched Batman Begins and G.I.Jane (Did you know Viggo was in this movie?). At that point I was ready to work out after being inspired by Demi Moore, but the gym wasn’t open yet. Where are the 24-hour gyms when you need them?
I’m eating Raw German Chocolate Brownies for breakfast. YUM! I created this recipe because I’m doing a demonstration at Wild Oats to celebrate Oktoberfest . I might even dress up in a costume as a bar wench – haha…we’ll see. I think I’ll eat these all day because I am out of fresh produce in my house. “What??? Kristen Suzanne, you don’t have your kitchen stocked at all times?” Truth be told, I ran out of food….except for the freezer! I have loads of raw food frozen for occasions such as these. I have made (and ready for thawing)….dressings, hummus, pate, desserts and more. You see, ordinarily I’m very organized and prepared….uuhmmm….for the times I’m not prepared.
What actually happened is I spent my weekend at the 10th annual Green Building Expo. My plan was to only attend Friday, but it was so great I went back the second day. It was filled with amazing lectures on how to make green living in your home a reality. I’m now dreaming of solar panel rooftops to make my own energy to sell back to the power company. Very inspiring.
I’m off to the gym now (thoughts of Demi Moore doing her 1-arm pushups are coarsing through my mind and practically pushing me out the door to the gym).
Wednesday, October 3rd, 2007
“This may be the first generation in which our kids live a shorter lifespan than we do,” Dr. Dean Ornish says.
The good news? These trends are preventable and even reversible through diet and exercise. Check out Dr. Ornish’s 3-minute talk here.
Wednesday, October 3rd, 2007
It’s been a wonderful day! The sun was shining bright, the sky was brilliantly blue, and I was filled with vibrant energy all day long. Lovely.
I didn’t get to the gym, so I jumped rope 3 separate times (2-3 minutes each). I followed each jump rope session with a set of 35 push-ups and a set of walking lunges down my street. I wore my ankle weights all day, everywhere. And, my dog walked me around our big block twice.
Breakfast: 4 cups smoothie (1 cup water, 3 bananas, 3/4 pound strawberries, 2 tbsp fresh rosemary and dill combined)
Dinner: veggie bowl of 4 cups diced carrots and cucumbers, 1 cup packed alfalfa sprouts, 1/4 cup fresh basil, and 1/4 cup mustard seed dressing
Dessert: large piece of pumpkin pie
“What you want to be eventually, you must be every day. With practice, the quality of your deeds gets down to your soul.“
Monday, October 1st, 2007
Living the Raw Vegan lifestyle means I live a Green lifestyle, where my choices positively impact our earth. Everywhere I turn I hear about the necessity of helping our earth, the dire implications of global warming, and the increasingly popular style of living, “eco living.” I’m proud of my efforts, because I’m helping our earth and not hurting it.
If you’re not a part of the solution,
then you’re a part of the problem.
A groundbreaking 2006 United Nations report illustrates raising animals for food as “one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global,” showing this creates more greenhouse gases than all the trucks and cars in the world combined.
Going vegan is one of the most effective ways
to fight global warming.
*A must-see video about global warming: John Doerr, Silicon Valley’s legendary moneyman, is discussing his fear of eco-apocalypse. View video.
*After you’re done viewing John Doerr’s speech, check out “Yahoo Green“ to learn more ways you can start living a more green existence.
*Top Reasons to avoid animal products or by-products (meat, dairy, eggs…) and Go Vegan!
Friday, September 28th, 2007
Raw is a lifestyle, not just a diet. This idea can intimidate some, because they never entertained the idea of an entire “lifestyle” relating to their food choices. For others, like myself, I love referring to it as such. It makes my life easier and keeps me focused because there are no contradictions.
This is my life’s…style. I immerse my entire self into it. Everything is effortlessly connected…from the Raw food I eat to how I feel physically as a result (I feel energized for working out) to whether my mind is calm (I’ll watch the beautiful sunset) or focused and alert (I’m ready to go play in the kitchen) to what I can do with Raw food to control these aspects to affecting things around me such as our home, the earth. All of this matters.
My Raw lifestyle is a part of everything I do…physically, mentally, spiritually, socially, and globally.
Today’s Exercise and Food:
It’s my day off from the gym so I put on my bikini, went to the pool, laid in the sun and swam a few laps.
Breakfast: fresh energizing smoothie (1 1/2 cups water, 3 bananas, 1/2 bunch Italian parsley, 2 tsp minced rosemary, 1 tsp chopped fresh ginger, peeled, and a pinch of cinnamon
Lunch: 2+ cups chopped veggies (carrots, zucchini, red bell pepper stirred into Savory Pecan Pate) same as last night’s dinner
Dinner: zucchini pasta marinara, pumpkin pie