Thursday, December 29, 2016

Meal Prep and Weekly Workouts (Vol. 4) -Brunch

I hope all of you enjoyed your holiday, whatever one you do or don't celebrate! I feel like sometimes holiday breaks are busier than normal life between seeing all the family and friends and parties, etc. 

Matt and I didn't have Charlie this year for Christmas morning, so we hosted brunch when she came home at 9am. One of the hardest things about being divorced is sharing her for holidays- I didn't get to see her little footie pajamas come down the stairs to see that Santa came, I didn't get to set out cookies with her the night before, I didn't get to read her "The Night Before Christmas"- it just sucks. I know that my situation is not a lot different than half of the United States these days, and I know it is harder on her even if she doesn't know anything different yet, but it makes me sad that I miss out on the magic of the holiday for children every other year when he has her. Despite the morning not being what I selfishly want, we had a wonderful Christmas and I am enjoying my time home with her not having to rush off at 6:30am. We spent our mornings relaxing, and made pancakes (recipe below) with our new pancake molds in festive shapes, drank hot chocolate and snuggled.  

Weekly Workouts:

Christmas week was a rough week getting workouts in at the gym. I didn't have a lot of time, but something is better than nothing!

Workout 1 (30 min)
Surprisingly the burpees were the worst part of this!
4 RFT (rounds for time)
20 Heavy Wall Balls (I did 20# to 10')
20 AKBS @35#
20 Burpees
20 Chest to Bar

Workout 2 (30 minutes)
Hatch Squat Program Week 5 Day 1
Backsquat- 1x8 @65%, 1x6 @75%, 1x4 @85%, 1x4 @90%
Frontsquat- 1x5 @70%, 1x5 @80%, 1x5 @85%, 1x5 @90%

Workout 3 (<30 min)
14 Min AMRAP
7 Chest to Bar
14 AKBS @35#
21 Gobblet Squats @35#

Workout 4 (1 Hour)
20 Cal Row
20 Toe to Bar

WOD 2:
Double Tabata (not alternating)
Deadlifts @50%
Bar Facing Burpees

5x1 Deadlifts (85-90%)

Workout 5 (<30 min)
33 Backsquats @63#
7 Muscle-ups
10 Hang Power Snatch

Workout 6 (1 Hour)
12 Days of Christmas- workout done like the song (i.e.: 1 rope climb...2 muscle ups, 1 rope climb....etc)
Buy-in 359 Jump Rope (double unders count as 2)
1 Rope Climb
2 Muscle Ups
3 Snatches @93#
4 Cleans
5 Burpees
6 Toe to Bar
7 Deadlifts
9 Cal Row
10 10-m Shuttle Runs
11 Shoulder to Overhead
12 Wall Walks (aka death)


We hosted Christmas Brunch so I made two egg dishes, roasted red skin potatoes and a baked french toast that can all be done the night before and cooked the next day. I'm sorry- I did a poor job with taking photos this week!

Homemade Pancakes

Fluffy and so much better than the kind in the box. :) 

-3 Cups All-Purpose Flour
- 2 Tbsp Baking Powder
- 2 Tbsp Sugar
- 2.5 Cups Milk
- 2 Eggs
- 5 Tbsp Butter, melted
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- Pinch of Salt

In a large bowl, whisk the dry ingredients. Add the milk, eggs and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Grease a skillet or griddle with butter, over medium-high heat, pour 1/4 cup of the batter for each pancake. Flip when bubbles form on the top.

Sausage Egg Bake

-12 Eggs
-2 Cups Milk
-1lb Sausage (ground)
-1 1/2 Cups Frozen Shredded Potatoes (such as Simply Potatoes)
*Optional 3/4 Cup Shredded Cheese*

1. Brown and crumble sausage in a skillet over medium heat. 
2. Grease a 9x13" pan. Sprinkle in the potatoes. Whisk the eggs and milk (cheese if adding). Add the cooked sausage. Pour the eggs/milk over the top. Let it sit in the fridge 2+ hours or overnight.
When you are ready to cook- preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cook 45min-1 hour until the eggs are set. 

Spinach and Feta Bake

-12 Eggs
-2 Cups Milk
-1/2 Cup Crumbled Feta Cheese
-12-oz Frozen Spinach, thawed/drained/squeezed
- 1 Red Bell Pepper, finely chopped
- 3 Green onions, white and green parts, chopped
- Salt and pepper
-1 1/2 Cups Frozen Shredded Potatoes (such as Simply Potatoes)

1. In a small skillet over medium heat, with a drizzle of oil, cook the bell pepper until softened. About 5 minutes. 
2. Whisk the milk and eggs. Grease a 9x13" pan. Sprinkle in the potatoes. Top the potatoes with the bell pepper, spinach, feta, onion and salt/pepper. Pour the eggs/milk over the top.  Let it sit in the fridge 2+ hours or overnight.
When you are ready to cook- preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cook 45min-1 hour until the eggs are set. 

Orange Upside Down French Toast

This is my Aunt Joyce's recipe. I am not a fan of french toast- but this one always get rave reviews. 

- 1/4 Cup Butter, melted
- 1/3 Cup Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 Orange, zested and juiced (2/3+ Cup Juice)
- 5 Eggs, beaten
- 8 Thick Slices White Bread

1. Pour the melted butter in a 9x13" (or bigger) glass baking dish. Sprinkle the butter with the sugar, cinnamon, and orange zest. 
2. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and orange juice. Dip the bread in the eggs, soaking it well. Arrange the bread on top of the butter-sugar mixture. If there is any of the egg-OJ left after dipping, pour it over the top. Let it sit, in the fridge 2+ hours or overnight. 
3. Bake at 325 degrees for 40-45 minutes. Flip onto a plate. 

Roasted Rosemary Red Skin Potatoes

I don't measure or time this.... but I used one bag of red skin potatoes. Cut them in 1/2" or so chunks. Drizzled olive oil over the top and sprinkled with dried rosemary (I don't have fresh right now), salt and pepper and baked them 45 minutes or so at 450 degrees tossing at the half way point. 

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Meal Prep and Weekly Workouts (Vol. 3) Spaghetti Pie, Chicken Tortilla Casserole, Beef Stew, Apricot Chicken Meatballs, Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Almost to winter break- we can do it! Trying to keep moving even though I am tired and want to eat all the cookies. This time of year is rough. It would be easy to make excuses, but I have found that as much as I don't want to get up early, workout, meal prep, etc. I am so glad I did when I finish. On the outside I might look like I am doing pretty well- I am feeling great workout-wise, finally!, I am keeping my patience at work with students, and my home is fairly clean and decorated for the holidays. Reality- I am on the struggle bus- I am taking deep breaths to not lose it at home. I am so behind at work... this week, to justify working out, I graded lab reports in between squat sets. It reminded me of eating a cookie on a treadmill, stressing and de-stressing at the same time. I was videoing my squats to make sure I was at depth because weight is getting heavy, and captured this moment- Annie wanting to play fetch, Charlie in the background watching a show to give me 30 min of "me" time and grading next to my squat rack. This is life. 

Weekly Workouts:

Workout 1 (45 min)
12 min Clock
5 min AMRAP 
Full Clean and Jerk @165/113
2 min Rest
5 min AMRAP
Burpee Box Jumps @24"/20"

Bench Press increasing weight each set
10 Strict Pull-ups between each set

Workout 2 (30 minutes)
Hatch Squat Program Week 4 Day 1
Backsquat- 1x8 @65%, 1x8 @70%, 1x6 @80%, 1x6 @85%
Frontsquat- 1x5 @70%, 1x5 @75%, 1x5 @80%, 1x5 @85%

Workout 3 (<30 min)
90 Double Unders
70 AKBS @53/35#
50 Wall Balls @20/14#
30 Hand-stand Push-ups
10 Muscle Ups

Workout 4 (1 Hour)
8:00 AMRAP
5 Full Snatch @155/103
3 Bar Muscle Ups
2:00 Rest
For Time:
12 Deadlifts @155/103
9 Hang Power Cleans @155/103
6 Jerks @155/103

Workout 5 (1 Hour)
Partner Workout: 
20:00 AMRAP
1:00 On/1:00 Off Alternating
100 Cal Assault Bike
100 Gobblet Squats w/ KB
100 Burpees

Hatch Squat Program Week 4 Day 2
Backsquat- 1x8 @65%, 1x8 @70%, 1x8 @75%, 1x8 @80%
Frontsquat- 1x5 @60%, 1x5 @65%, 2x5 @70%

Meal Prep (2.5 hours):

Just three days of work this week!! Yay! For meal prep this week we tried some new recipes. Looking to keep our eating mostly on track through the holidays. :)

On the Menu!

Spaghetti Pie, Chicken Tortilla Casserole, Beef Stew, Apricot Chicken Meatballs, Roasted Sweet Potatoes, Baked Chicken, Santa's Popcorn, Almond-Crusted Walleye (being made later this week)

How I did it:

Beef stew in the crockpot was first, chop, put everything in, done. Next the chicken when in the oven because I needed it for other recipes. Then I started on the chicken meatballs (recipe below.) When they went in the oven I got my sweet chili sauce done and started on the spaghetti pie (recipe below.) Water boiling for the noodles and chorizo in the skillet sautéing- the meatballs came out and were tossed in the sauce, done. Spaghetti pie assembled and put in the oven, done. The chicken came out and I started on the two sauces I would need for the casserole (recipe below.) When those were done the chicken was cool enough to touch and so I cut all of it and assembled the casserole, done. 

Apricot Chicken Meatballs

(inspired by Primal Cravings)
- 2 lbs Ground Chicken
- 2 Tbsp Coconut Flour
- 2 Eggs
- 2 Tbsp Apricot Jam
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Sweet Chili Sauce (homemade or store bought)

Sauce (*warning! I liked this sauce, but Matt did not :) he thought the vinegar was too much- it reads like a sweet and sour. I think I will play with it and maybe increase the jam and decrease the vinegar- oh well- more for Charlie and me!) 
- 1/2 Cup Apricot Jam
- 1/2 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
- 2 Tbsp Sweet Chili Sauce
- 2 Tbsp Water
- 2 Tbsp Arrowroot Powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 

1. In a large bowl combine the chicken through chili sauce. Mix well with your hands. Drop tablespoon sized mounds onto a parchment lined baking sheet. They are "loose" looking and that's ok. I made 30 meatballs
2. Bake 18-20 minutes. 
3. While they bake, combine the jam through the chili sauce in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk the water and arrowroot powder together and slowly add it to the saucepan while whisking. Increase the heat and bring to a boil until it thickens slightly. When the meatballs come out, toss them in the sauce. 

Spaghetti Pie

(inspired by Cooking Light)
- 1 lb Chorizo
- 1/2 Sweet Onion, finely chopped
- 2 Garlic cloves, minced
- 10 oz Gluten-free Spaghetti
- 2 Eggs
- 1 14-oz Can Tomato Sauce
- 10 oz Baby Spinach
- 3/4 Cup Part-skim Mozzarella 

1. Bring water to a boil and cook the pasta for 8 minutes (It will not be done.)
2. While the pasta is cooking, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add a drizzle of oil, onion, and garlic. Saute 5 minutes. Add the chorizo and cook while breaking it apart as much as possible. 

Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Put a large cast-iron skillet in the over to pre-heat.

3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs. Add the hot pasta and toss. Add the chorizo mixture and pasta sauce. In the same skillet, add another drizzle of oil and saute the spaghetti until it is wilted. Add that to the bowl as well as 1/2 cup cheese. 

4. Carefully remove the skillet from the oven and spray it with olive oil cooking spray. Add the spaghetti mixture, top with the rest of the cheese. Bake 15 minutes until bubbly. 

Chicken Tortilla Casserole

(inspired by Cooking Light)
- 1/2 Sweet Onion, chopped
- 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1 Red Bell Pepper, chopped
- 2 Tbsp All-purpose Flour
- 1 Cup 2% Milk
- 1/2 Cup Low-Sodium Chicken Stock
- 1 tsp Cumin
- 1/2 tsp Ground Coriander
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 1/4 tsp Black Pepper
- 4-oz 1/3 Less Fat Cream Cheese
- 1 Can Black Beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 Cooked Chicken Breasts, cubed (about 4 cups)
- 4 ounces Baked Tortilla Chips, crumbled
- 1.5 Cups Enchilada Sauce, homemade (recipe previously posted)
- 3/4 Cup Shredded Cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1. Heat oil in a sauce pan over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and bell pepper; cook 6 minutes. Add flour; cook 1 minute. Gradually add the milk and stock, stirring constantly; bring to a boil. Remove from heat; stir in the spices and cream cheese. 
2. Spread 1/2 cup milk mixture over the bottom of a glass baking dish. Layer beans, 1/2 the chicken, and 1/2 the chips. Top with 1/2 cup milk mixture, the rest of the chicken, the rest of the chips. Top with the rest of the milk mixture and enchilada sauce. Sprinkle with shredded cheese. Bake for 30 minutes. 

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Meal Prep and Weekly Workouts (Vol 2) + Enchiladas

We got our first big snow of the season in South East Michigan. Charlie couldn't be happier, she has been waiting for this. I am trying to enjoy all of these moments this year and relax- everyone driving and in the stores seems to need to take it down a notch and I can't take it. We did almost all our Christmas shopping online. I love Amazon Prime- two day free shipping? What could be better. I also found some of the kids' kitchen stuff I loved in Pottery Barn Kids on Amazon- literally the same things (made by Hape if you are interested)- for a fraction of the price... woohoo! 

Update on me- I met with my OB doctor this week- for the last time until I am pregnant again. And although we need to see a high-risk doctor still, it's a good feeling to start moving forward in that aspect. Am I still bitter and sad? Of course, and the holidays right now don't help, but at least with clearance medically, Matt and I can talk about trying again. I know different people need more time or feel differently- it is harder to heal emotionally than physically- but no amount of time will change some of my feelings from this experience. I have a completely new perspective on a lot of things. I also know it might not happen right away, but having something to hope for and dream about again is so much better than feeling like you are in a purgatory of waiting while everyone else gets pregnant around you. I know it is not everyone, but from talking to my support group and friends in a similar situation it feels like everyone is. :) 

Weekly Workouts:

I did more workouts this week day-wise because I didn't have a lot of time- so strength and workouts were done on different days. Again, time was literally when I walked in until I left. I don't warm up a lot. :) 

Workout 1 (15 min)
10 Min AMRAP
90 Wall Balls 14# to 10' target
30 Deadlifts @185#
10 Bar Muscle Ups

Workout 2 (30 minutes)
Hatch Squat Program Week 3 Day 1
Backsquat- 1x8 @65%, 1x8 @70%, 1x6 @80%, 1x6 @85%

Frontsquat- 1x5 @60%, 1x5 @70%, 1x5 @75%, 1x5 @80%

Workout 3 (1 Hour)
(curtesy of CrossFit Linchpin)
50 Double Unders
25 Bench @135/95#
50 Double Unders
25 Ring Rows- feet on box
50 Double Unders

5 Ring Muscle-ups

WOD 2:
5x3 PCPJ (5min)
5x2 Power Clean (5min)
*Increase load across all 10:00min

WOD 3:
5 Rds
25 Double Unders
5 Strict HSPU

Workout 4 (20 min)
10 Rds for time
8 American Kettlebell Swings @70lbs
5 Strict Hand-stand Pushups

Workout 5 (30 min)
Partner Workout: 

20:00 AMRAP
1:00 On/1:00 Off Alternating
200 Double Unders
150 Cal Erg or Bike
100 Deadlifts @185/123
Mara and I did 1 + 203Rx

Workout 6 (1 hour)
"Fight Gone Bad"
3 Rds:
1 min Wall Balls 20/14lbs to 10' target
1 min Sumo Deadlift High-pulls @75#
1 min Box Jumps 20"
1 min Push-press @75#
1 min Row for Calories
1 min Rest

Hatch Squat Program Week 3 Day 2
Backsquat- 1x10 @60%, 1x10 @65%, 1x8 @70%, 1x8 @75%
Frontsquat- 1x5 @60%, 1x5 @65%, 2x5 @70%

Meal Prep

Matt and I kept it simple this week. We are also apparently carb-loading! We hosted dinner for some friends Saturday night and made homemade pasta and ravioli so we will be eating the leftovers this week- I keep pasta sauce I have made in big batches in the freezer to pull out when we need it, so that saves time. 

We also bought lunchmeat for sandwiches so that with the ravioli soup makes an excellent lunch!

On the Menu! (Less Than Two hours total not including making the pasta and breaded chicken the day before)

Spaghetti, Ravioli Soup, Breaded Baked Chicken, Roasted Sweet Potatoes, Enchiladas, Taco Meat, Regular Baked Chicken, Stir-fried Veggies, Rice

How I did it:

I started with the taco meat- almost 8lbs of lean beef- in a large dutch oven over medium heat to brown. While that cooked I made enchilada sauce (recipe below). When the beef was cooked I added taco seasoning and turned off the heat. While my stove-items cooled I put my 9 chicken breasts in a glass baking dish, sprinkled with seasonings and they went into the over at 400 degrees for 30ish minutes depending on their thickness. With the chicken in the oven I assembled my enchiladas and got them in my other oven (if you don't have two ovens just have everything ready to go in as one dish comes out, no big deal.) Back to the stove- stir-fry veggies (frozen, from Costco) and cook the rice, peel and dice the sweet potato. Out comes everything from the oven, sweet potatoes go in, and I began portioning lunch containers. All done!

Homemade Enchiladas

(Makes 6 big ones)
The flavor is mild enough Charlie can enjoy these too- if you want to increase the heat, add some cayenne to the sauce!

The Sauce:
- 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
- 1/2 Cup Flour
- 1/2 Cup Chili Powder
- 2 tsp Cumin
- 2 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 tsp Black Pepper
- 1 tsp Salt
- 2 14.5-oz Can Tomato Sauce (no added sugar)
- 2 Cups+ Water

1. In a small sauce pan over medium heat, add the oil, chili powder, and flour. Whisk until smooth and the sauce starts to turn a darker color. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Whisk until smooth and reduce the heat. Stir occasionally. The sauce will thicken in 5-10 minutes. If it is too thick for your preference, add more water, in this recipe thick sauce is good!

Other Ingredients:
- Tortillas (I try to find the low-carb, high fiber ones, 100 calories or less per tortilla)
- 1 lb Taco-seasoned Ground Beef, cooked
- Shredded Cheese

Black Olives
Green Onion
Plain Greek Yogurt (or sour cream)
Shredded Lettuce
Hot Sauce

Preheat the oven to 375 Degrees. 
1. In a 9x11" glass baking dish, pour about 1 Cup of sauce and spread it out. Assemble the tortillas like you should soft tacos-  beef and cheese, roll- place seam side down in the dish.

2. Pour the reaming sauce over the top and sprinkle with cheese. Bake 20 minutes until bubbly.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

One Hour at a Time... in the gym!

One month post traumatic event and I feel like I am doing much better turning the page. The only thing that still gets me is when people announce they are pregnant or constantly post pictures of their new baby... which honestly every time I open up any social media seems to be like everyone I know. My literally reaction out loud, or in my head if I am with them, is “what the f—k.” I know that is shocking for some people who have never had, or don't understand, infertility or loss, but let me explain. First of all this is a constant topic in my group dealing with infertility and loss so this isn't just me. Secondly, it’s not that I am not happy when people are expecting or have babies, it just feels like a dagger to the heart for me because of what I have been through. I am healthy, young-ish, finally with the right man, and I really want a baby... so hearing it was a “mistake”  or "it happened so quickly" or whatever I am justifiably bitter at the unfairness. I am fully aware I can't control the situation and will just have to wait and hope for the best when we can try again, so in the mean time I am focusing on things that make me happy and keep me busy and healthy- food, fitness, and family. 

After what happened a few weeks ago I don't know when I'll compete again- which is hard to say since I'm such a competitive person, but my priorities are different. I want a baby to make it to term, I'm a mom, a teacher and can't commit the time I know it takes to compete at the level I want to. I have already decided I will not be doing the CrossFit Open this year, for the first time in four years. I know myself and I can't just "do it for fun." I will go hard and stress that I am not training enough and that kind of pressure I put on myself physically and mentally is not good for the balance I am trying to achieve. I'm still going to train and give it my all when I'm at the gym - I love CrossFit and I know I will be back competing one day, but in the mean time I'm finally realizing my balance right now involves taking a step back, not comparing myself to others, or even my former self, staying positive and supporting my friends who are motivated to hit some impressive goals and who are putting in the works that it takes to compete at a high level and they're killing it. 

Even though competing is taking a back seat to wanting a family, fitness and being healthy are most definitely still riding shotgun. I know, even if I am pregnant again one day, I can commit my typical 25min-1 hour at the gym or at home at least 4-5 times a week. If I need more rest, I will take it, but even a walk around the block with the dog is better than nothing! I know it is not just me who wants to train, but has limited time to fit everything in- programs I have found that cater to this type of athlete seem to not put in high skills (like just because you don't have 3 hours a day you can't do a muscle up?) and cost money. That's not my style, so with the suggestion from my cousin, Emily, I thought I would post what I am doing weekly, along with what I am eating, so all of you other busy people can get in and out of the gym with me. :) 

I don't have an issue with the current programming at the gym, I follow it for the most part, it is just sometimes too much for what I have time for and I find myself picking and choosing what days I will go in based on what the workout is and I don't like that. A workout that is 30 minutes of just snatching is great, but when you only have 1 hour a few days a week a workout with only one skill is not what I want to be doing. I know it is near impossible to practice olympic lifts, gymnastics, mobility, and do a workout and all the strength training with just an hour, but I want to fit in as many skills as possible every week. I also know what it takes to be competitive and even though it isn't my priority, if you work hard enough in that hour you can still be a really decent athlete and healthy, happy person. My friends joke that I can come in, not stretch, bust out a workout and strength and be gone in 45 minutes before some people have even warmed up. 

All times are from when I walked in the door until when I walked out. Some were done at home. I don't warm up a lot, don't spend time in the gym stretching or doing anything I could do at home. I am nuts. :) 

Weekly Workouts: 
Workout 1 (1 hour)
100 Wall Balls 
10 Power Clean and Jerks @125 (Rx was 155#)
Time- 10:03

Hatch Squat Program Week 2 Day 1
Backsquat- 1x10 @60%, 1x8 @65%, 1x6 @70%, 1x6 @75%, 1x6 @80%
Frontsquat- 1x5 @60%, 1x5 @70%, 2x5 @75%

Workout 2 (30 minutes)
3 min Assault Bike (moderate pace)
3 Rounds for Time:
10 Cal Assault Bike
5 Strict HSPU
5 Ring Dips
3 min Assault Bike (moderate pace)
Time- less than ten min.

50 ab mat sit-ups
5x5 Strict Press as heavy as possible

Workout 3 (<45 minutes)
11 min AMRAP 
10 OHS @65/95#
5 Burpee Box Jumps @20"/24"
10 Toes to Bar
Score- 7+16

Clean and Jerk practice- as high as possible 

Workout 4 (1 hour)

1 Power Snatch every :15x16 (4:00)
1 Power Clean Push Jerk every :15x16 (4:00)@75% of Snatch

Hatch Squat Program Week 2 Day 2
Backsquat- 1x10 @60%, 1x8 @70%, 1x8 @75%, 1x8 @80%
Frontsquat- 1x5 @60%, 1x5 @65%, 2x5 @70%

WOD 2:
Every minute on the minute (EMOM)x8 Min
2 Ring Muscle Ups
10 Burpees

Workout 5 (50min)
40 min AMRAP
With a partner or just working every other minute
100 Cal Assault Bike
100 American Kettlebell Swings @35#
100 Burpees
Score- 2+71

Food is equally as important to me as fitness... they go together in my mind. I am an ambassador for Girl Meets Strong, an organization geared at creating positive body image, strength and confidence in women and girls- they interviewed me about my philosophy behind the way I eat and how I got started changing my diet... if you are interested here is the article :) HOW TO EAT CLEAN AND GET LEAN

Meal Prep! (two hours total)
On the Menu: Taco Meat, Chili, Stir-fried Veggies, Chicken Kabobs, Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash, Grilled Chicken, Rice

How I did it: 
I started by roasting the spaghetti squash and getting the rice going. While those cooked I started on my chili. When I added the ground beef to the chili I started another pan for the taco meat and added beef there too, cooking both at the same time. I also drained the fat and added my seasonings at the same time to the chili and taco meat. Once they were done and simmering I started on cutting vegetables for kabobs and buffalo chicken dish. Then cutting the chicken for the same two dishes. As I go I add things to containers- like the rice that was finished. I strung the kabobs and sent Matt outside to grill them. I used my frozen stir-fry Costco veggies so those in a skillet over high heat for a few minutes and ready for containers! Finally I began the spaghetti squash dish. All done! 

Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash
This is something I used to make and haven't in a long time- so the idea to make it again came from someone I work with, Eddie, who has lost a lot of weight just changing his diet and then training and completing his first marathon- impressive. I changed up the recipe just a bit, but it is so good- even better the next day. 

- 3 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, about 2lbs, cut into 1/2" pieces
- 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1 Sweet Onion, finely chopped
- 1 Spaghetti Squash, cooked (I roast mine- cut in half, de-seed, place cut side down on a cookie sheet for 45 min- 1 hour @400 degrees)
- 1/2-3/4 Cup Hot Sauce (I use Frank's Red Hot)
- 2 Cups Red Cabbage, shredded or finely chopped
- 2 Cups Carrots, matchstick or finely chopped
- Green Onion
- Bleu Cheese

1. In a large skillet over medium heat add a drizzle of oil and the onions and garlic. Cook 3 minutes until softened. Add the chicken. Cook through, 7-10 min)

2. Scrape the insides of the spaghetti squash and add it to the pan. Stir. Add the hot sauce and carrots and cabbage, stir. Taste for salt. Top with green onion and bleu cheese. 

Based on 6 1.5-cup(estimate) servings:
Nutrition Facts
Servings 6.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 240
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6 g9 %
Saturated Fat 2 g11 %
Monounsaturated Fat 3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 88 mg29 %
Sodium 1105 mg46 %
Potassium 285 mg8 %
Total Carbohydrate 11 g4 %
Dietary Fiber 2 g10 %
Sugars 6 g
Protein 35 g70 %
Vitamin A170 %
Vitamin C37 %
Calcium5 %
Iron3 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.
- 1.5lbs Stew Beef cut into 1/2" pieces
- 1 Sweet Onion, finely chopped
- 3 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1lb Ground Beef
- 1 20-oz Can Pineapple tidbits in juice
- 1 28-oz Can Crushed Tomatoes
- 1 15-oz Can Tomato Sauce
- 1 8-oz (Small) Can Tomato Paste
- 2 Cans Kidney Beans, rinsed and drained
- 3 Tbsp Chili Powder
- 2 tsp Paprika
- 2 tsp Cumin
- 1 Tbsp Salt
- 2 tsp Black Pepper
- 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper

1. In a large dutch-over or pot over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and steak. Cook the steak until browned on all sides, about 3-5 minutes. (it does not need to be cooked through.) Remove from pan.
2. Reduce the heat to medium. Add a drizzle of oil, the onion, garlic and a little salt. Cook until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
3.  Add the ground beef and brown, breaking it up as much as possible. If there is a lot of fat in the pan at this point I would drain it. My beef was lean so I didn't. Add the spices. 
4. After the spices are fragrant, add the pineapple (with juice), the browned stew beef and all the cans of tomato products. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer about an hour. Taste for salt.

Based on 8 2-cup(about two "ladle full") servings:

Nutrition Facts
Servings 8.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 461
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 14 g21 %
Saturated Fat 5 g25 %
Monounsaturated Fat 4 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 95 mg32 %
Sodium 1635 mg68 %
Potassium 978 mg28 %
Total Carbohydrate 43 g14 %
Dietary Fiber 11 g44 %
Sugars 15 g
Protein 40 g80 %
Vitamin A42 %
Vitamin C73 %
Calcium13 %
Iron39 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.