The Crockpot is my BFF.

It’s day two of my Whole30, and I’m feeling pretty good so far… Two days isn’t much. But I prepared for this for about a week. And have been “Paleo” for a year. The hardest thing is to cut out eggs, nuts and nightshades for the autoimmune protocol. Some of my go-to foods are out, so I’m working on getting creative.

Yesterday I was really tired from lack of sleep… But went to hot yoga at 645am and Crossfit after that. All that physical activity left me ravenous all day! I drank lots of water, had my giant green smoothie and ate three square meals. That part is weird for me too, because I’m used to eating on my nightshift schedule.. Waking up late, eating late, and usually not three meals. I can get used to this regular eating thing! Being awake during the day is pretty awesome so far.

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mmmm, green smoothie! (Coconut milk, banana, strawberries and a whole lotta spinach!)

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also had these for a snack while I was out running errands!

Of all the things in my kitchen, I use my crockpot the most. Maybe, my VITAMIX would be the exception. If your short on time, just throw whatever in the crockpot. I’ve done this many times with all sorts of ingredients and it always turns out fabulous! Currently, I have an Italian-seasoned pork roast slow cooking, and also tin-foil-wrapped some sweet potatoes to share the slow-cook lovin’.

One of my favorite meals is this pumpkin stew recipe. The original recipe can be found here, but over the last few times I’ve made it, I’ve changed it a whole lot. I’ve used ground turkey before, omitted craisins, and used the larger can of pumpkin. Every time, it has been great!

Yesterday’s version was

1lb organic, grass-fed beef (I used ground, it’s what I had in my fridge. Can sub stew meat)
1 can organic pumpkin
Handful of fresh sage, chopped (my favorite!)
1 butternut squash, chopped into cubes
2 c chicken stock (I used homemade bone broth!)
3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
10 oz mushrooms, chopped/cubed
1 tsp sea salt

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Throw it all in the crockpot on low for about 6 hours.

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That’s it. Easy. Makes 4-6 servings ūüôā

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My thoughts on the Whole30

Have you read this book? You should. It’s full of what you should be eating and why you should eat it to achieve and maintain optimal health, wealth and happiness. Okay, maybe not wealth. But in my book (a hypothetical book), health is certainly wealth.

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Yesterday, Dallas and Melissa Hartwig from the Whole9 came to my new CrossFit gym, CrossFit Love. They are amazing people! They educate and motivate, and speak in such a genuine, compassionate way. I was so happy to meet them!!

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I asked a lot of questions, yeah I was probably that annoying one. I learned that I pretty much do everything right… Except sleep. And maybe too much of paleo-flying things. And maybe my weekly Mexican.. I can’t help that. Anyways, when I mentioned to Melissa that I’ve worked nightshift for the past two years. She stopped me immediately and said, “you need to fix your sleep!!”

Even with the best nutrition, my lifestyle stress and sleep deprivation is sabotaging my health and fitness goals. My lifestyle isn’t sustainable. Pair that with some chronic autoimmune diseases, and I’m really headed in the wrong direction. Less than 9 hours of sleep? Don’t go do high-intensity training. Oh.. You mean I shouldn’t work night shift, go to CrossFit, and then go back to nightshift? Whoops.

So with my Hashimoto’s at its worst since my diagnosis, I’m switching to day shift this week. And what perfect timing to do so; I’m starting the strict Autoimmune Protocol of the Whole30 tomorrow.

No GRAINS
No DAIRY
No SUGAR
No LEGUMES
No ALCOHOL
No NIGHTSHADES
No EGGS

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YIKES, so what do I eat? MEAT, SEAFOOD, VEGETABLES, HEALTHY FATS & a little bit of FRUIT.

It sounds limiting, but I can’t wait to feel better. When you lose almost 5 months of your life to thyroid disease, 30 days doesn’t seem like all that much more. With optimal nutrition, restorative sleep, CrossFit 3x a week and a whole month of unlimited yoga, I can’t wait to see what these 30 days will bring.

Stop back for updates and Whole30 approved recipes!!

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Get those Greens.

The new year is an easy way to make big changes. Wipe the slate clean and start fresh, right?

I used to make green smoothies all the time, for breakfast, for a snack, whatever. Especially in the winter months, it’s harder to drink cold things. But this year, I’m ignoring that and participating in simplegreensmoothies.com 30 day green smoothie challenge. I started on December 30th, so today is Day 5! It’s really easy, really delicious, and you know you’re doing something good for yourself.

The purpose of this challenge is to maximize your nutrition, increase your veggie intake, and especially get them in their raw and √ľber-nutritional form. A bagel for breakfast equals zero nutritional value. Those extra “fortified nutrients” don’t count. And those empty carbs cause silent inflammation and promote disease in your body. Raw, whole foods = nutrients in their real form, and are sucked up by every cell in your body to make you thrive. Real nutrients, real vitamins, real fiber, I think I rest my case.

This week I loaded up on tons of spinach and fruit. To make this more affordable, Trader Joe’s frozen fruits are a steal. In my cart this week: Blueberries, strawberries, mangoes, pineapples and mixed berries! Bananas and coconut milk, and obviously spinach! Make sure you buy your spinach organic; it’s on the dirty dozen list, ick!!

Now green smoothies don’t always look incredibly wonderful, but I promise if you start out with small amounts of spinach.. You will never know! If you are totally new to the green smoothie concept, my guaranteed crowd pleaser is
1c milk (of your choice, preferably non-dairy because cow boob juice is gross)
1 banana
1T peanut butter (or more if you anticipate choking these greens down)
1c fresh, organic spinach (more if you are adventurous)
a couple of ice cubes

and BLEND. DRINK, Try to enjoy and repeat again tomorrow.

*substitute almond butter to stay Paleo. PB actually sucks and I need to not eat it.

My go-to the last few days has been super simple, and I make extra so I can have two a day.
1c coconut milk (the real deal from the can, fat is good for you)
1c blueberries
& as much spinach as I can pack into my Vitamix :D!!

*today I added a banana to feel a little more fancy.

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And for some weird reason this concoction makes my mouth water, but that will happen to you too, once you start drinking them everyday.

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Go stock up on your greens, and get started.

Here we go.

 

 

Happy New Year Everyone! New year, new blog. Seems fitting, right?

 

Image2012 was a pretty darn good year. I made many new friends. I became a Crossfit fanatic and a Paleo enthusiast [read: freak]. I love my job as a Neonatal ICU Nurse. I have developed a strong sense of self, and love the world I have created around me. 

I can’t say I am too spoiled, my Hashimoto’s is at its worst since I was diagnosed 5 years ago. I¬†transitioned¬†from Vegan [yikes] to Paleo in the fall of 2011. This past year, I got serious with it. It’s amazing how sick and shitty you can be, and food can make you feel better. It seems like a no brainer, right? So, this blog will follow me continuing on my journey to health. Or just my random ramblings. Or just my creative outlet with some Paleo recipes and drool-worthy photos. Thanks for reading!

 

My year in review

January 

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Conquered DisneyWorld, for the 1st time. They’re building my castle next.
Hashimoto’s came back with a vengence.

February

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I felt horrible this entire month, waiting for my thyroid medication to kick in!

March

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Started Crossfit, became addicted. Started to feel like a normal person again.

April

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Was crossfitting 3-4x/week and was starting to feel amazing.

May 

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a little non-paleo indulgence, but it was tequila!

June

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a whole lot of crossfitting and clean eating.

July

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Felt so. damn. good. Was crossfitting a ton, and my thyroid was perfect.
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& bought my beauitiful Pearl! She is a chocolate pearl, duh.

August

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bought this beauty, and enjoy every second riding around Philly.

September

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Celebrated my 24th birthday in San Diego! This photo is taken in La Jolla Cove.

October

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Fall Softball! Started feeling really horrible again. Not related to softball, haha

November

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Chopped off all my hair. But for most of this month I slept 18 hours at a time.

Decemeber 

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Still battling the Hashimoto Monster, but had a fabulous holiday season with my family and friends.

 

And here we are: Janurary 2013. I’m waiting for my thyroid meds to kick in, starting to work dayshift (hopefully that helps my thyroid), starting to Crossfit regularly again [and hitting incredible olympic lifting PRs!], sticking to Paleo and starting a Whole30 challenge soon. A new blog, with updates, recipes and maybe a¬†face lift¬†soon. Letsdothis.