Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Going Nutz!!

Everyone knows how good nuts are for us….but why? And which ones do what? It’s always good to know what you are putting in your body! Just be careful these little snacks are too easy to eat and they are loaded with calories! Stay in portion size!

Also nuts have the most nutrients when eaten raw.  This also keeps you away from eating all the extra salt and perservatives...yes I know chipotle flavored pistacios can taste so yummy...but not nearly the same health benefits!

  • 14 halves=185 calories
  • Good source of protein, fiber, magnesium, high levels of alpha-linolenic acid (brain boosting omega 3)
  • 23 nuts=163 calories
  • Help lower cholesterol
  • More calcium and fiber than most other nuts
  • Vitamin E
Macadamia Nuts:
  • 10-12 nuts=204 calories
  • High in monounsaturated fat
  • Thiamine (helps nervous system)
  • 49 nuts=162 calories
  • Lower in calories then most nuts
  • Rich in lutein (antioxidant good for vision and skin)
  • One serving= potassium in one banana
  • 18 nuts= 163 calories
  • 10% daily value of iron
  • Folate and vitamin K (keeps bones strong and blood clotting normally)
Brazil Nuts:
  • 6 nuts=186 calories
  • Selenium (thyroid health)
  • 19 halves=196 calories
  • Rich in beta-sitosterol (lower cholesterol and prostate health)
Pine Nuts:
  • 167 nuts=191 calories
  • Manganese (maintain proper blood sugar levels and metabolize carbohydrates and protein)
  • Fatty acids (boost satiety hormones)

Monday, August 30, 2010


Take a few minutes to stop close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Think about the ocean waves, beautiful mountains, or a lush forest. Amazing how this will slow your heart rate and relax your mind.

Also try carrying some peppermint oil. Peppermint oil will help liven you up, feeling fresh and reenergized.

Whatever you do avoid stress eating!!!  Yes this is an impulse of many and yes as shown in the picture above "Stressed" does spell "Desserts" backwards...strange huh?  When you are stressed make sure you are eating because your tummy is hungry not because you are looking to fill that empty feeling/sad feeling/confused feeling with some "feel good" chocolate cake!!!  Best idea: if you are stressed stay away from the kitchen, hands off the fridge...try a walk or the gym.  Pushing yourself thru a sweat sess will calm the mind, activate those feel good endorphins, and give you a confidence boost...as good as it tastes chocolate cake won't do that, plus you will most likely regret it later.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Great BBQ Side Dish: Red Quinoa Salad

A new healthy take on pasta salad!! Great for these hot summer days…

  • ½ cup quinoa
  • ½ cup chopped baby tomatoes
  • ½ cup chopped spinach
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 chopped scallion
  1. Bring 1 cup of water and ½ cup of quinoa to a boil. Once boiling cover and cook for 15 minutes.
  2. Let quinoa cool.
  3. Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Refrigerate for one hour.
  4. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Whether you are a runner, hiker, swimmer or weight lifter start tracking your progress! Tracking your progress electronically and putting you stats into a graph will help motivate you to keep going. Keeping a track record also shows you how far you have come. Think of each line on the chart as your road to your goal!

General Stats to Track:
  • Weight
  • Circumference measurements
  • Blood pressure
  • Mentality/Anxiety levels
  • BMI
Runners/Swimmer/Hikers/Walkers Track:

  • Distance
  • Time
  • Pace
Weight Lifters Track:
  • Weight lifted
  • Reps
  • Sets

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Yum Yum Chocolate!

If you’re a fan of melty-rich oie gooie chocolate; you will love these!!

  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp of cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp of honey
  • 1 tbsp of cocoa nibs
  • 2 tbsp of coconut flakes
  1. Mix all ingredients together
  2. Line a ceramic dish with wax paper
  3. Put mix in the wax paper covered dish
  4. Put in fridge for 3 hours
  5. Enjoy!
NOTE: keep in the fridge or it will become liquid!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Honey Masks!

My girlfriend Christi got me hooked on this last year. Yes at first I was like “no way!! Sticky food on my face!.” But once I tried it I became a devout honey masker!

Honey is a great moisturizer, leaving your skin smooth as a baby’s booty! The hydroxyl acids also help to naturally exfoliate the skin, cleaning surface dirt from the pours. Furthermore the antibacterial properties of honey help fight any current infections on the skin (this is also great for healing any cuts on other areas of the body).

Be sure to purchase raw unprocessed honey (should be whiter in color than normal honey). The best is Manuka Honey, but is a little pricey. I usually just hit up Trader Joes or whole foods for one of their store brands and it does the job!

I usually just apply a light layer of the honey to my face and allow it to sit for approximately 20minutes then rinse with warm water. You can also get fancy and add some ground almonds (for a greater exfoliate) to the honey and apply it that way.

And guys this works great for you as well!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Coconut Oil….what is this stuff??

A health secret of the tropics!!

Many people say “No” to coconut oil because of it’s high content of saturated fat. Yes saturated fats from meat products are bad for you, but think about this is a plant source. Fats from plant sources are much easier for the body to digest. Check out this site for more information about the US campaign for unsaturated fats (look at what crops the US produces and why it makes sense for it to push for unsaturated fats). Check out this site for some detailed research: http://www.coconutoil.com/litalee.htm

Health benefits of coconut oil:
  • Hair care
  • Skin care
  • Increased immunity
  • Proper digestion
  • Proper metabolism
  • Bone strength
Why I decided to go with coconut oil: besides it’s amazing nutty taste, is it’s high content of lauric acid. The only other resource for this much lauric acid is human breast milk! When lauric acid is ingested the body converts it to monolaurin which actually breaks down the bi-lipid layers of bacteria and viruses in the body.

What’s in this stuff?

  • Saturated fatty acids: most are medium chain triglycerides, which assimilate well in the body (lauric acid, capric acid, caprylic acid, myristic acid, and palmitic)
  • Polyunsaturated fatty acid (linoleic acid)
  • Monounsaturated fatty acid (oleic acid)
  • Poly-phenols: responsible for the fragrance and taste
  • Vitamin E, Vitamin K, and minerals


  • Hair care: excellent conditioner for damaged hair and helps rid the hair of dandruff, lice, and lice eggs
  • Skin care: moisturizes dry skin; treats psoriasis, dermatitis, eczema and other skin infections
  • Digestion: the microbial properties help in dealing with bacteria, fungi, and parasites
  • Immunity: the lauric, capric, and caprylic acid have antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral properties
  • Healing: helps repair damaged tissues, such a bruise. Treats such viruses that cause influenza, measles, hepatitis, herpes, and SARS. Also kills bacteria that cause ulcers, throat infections, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and gonorrhea. As well as fungi and yeast that cause candidiasis, ringworm, athlete’s foot, thrush, and diaper rash.
  • Bones &Teeth : coconut oil helps the body absorb calcium and magnesium.

Coconut oil can be used in all types of food from ice cream to smoothies to bread or just as a butter replacement. Check out these recipes:

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


I was recently asked by a friend, “How do you get up every day and get to the gym, I was motivated at the beginning but now I’ve lost it.”

Most people struggle with this; why do you think there is a peak in gym memberships in January and the gym is packed? Suddenly February comes along and half the people are gone! Sticking with the gym is difficult because: we all have tight schedules, we all are tired with our normal life schedules, and well the gym is a lot of physical work!

Here are a few ground rules:
  1. Make going to the gym part of your life; just like brushing your teeth! Getting physically shape and keeping it is a lifestyle change!
  2. Make a schedule of the day and time you will go each week. Make sure it is a time that you can do; this is why first thing in the morning is sometimes the best, no other activities you do during the day can get in the way.
  3. At the beginning of the week create a workout plan for each day. This plan should detail the body part(s) that will be targeted, the exercises, reps, sets, and weight as well as the type and time of cardio training.
  4. Make playlists specific to the type of workout with your favorite motivational and powerful songs.
  5. Keep a log of your body changes. This log should be updated every few weeks and should include: weight, measurements, energy level, and maybe even a picture. Whatever works to make you see the benefits for your hard work
  6. If you can make a buddy that will stick with you at the gym. Just make sure this doesn’t become a social fest. Be sure this partner will help you with form, motivation, and fresh workout ideas!
Motivation is one of the biggest challenges we all face in life; so don’t feel bad! Trick is create a plan, think of it as a map leading you to your ultimate goal, and follow it!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Try this workout this week!!

Walking lunges! Yes most of us hate them; but after you start seeing what they do for your legs and glutes your mind will be quickly changed! Great thing about them you can do them virtually anywhere and most all levels of fitness can benefit from them! My girlfriend and I recently did them while walking uphill at the Santa Barbara zoo.

Ways to challenge the lunges:

  • Add hand weights, about 10lbs
  • Add a barbell
  • Add a medicine ball with a torso twist
  • Finish the lunge off with a back leg lift (great for stability, glutes, and hamstrings)..see below
  • Front leg lift (stand all weight on forward leg and finish with extended the back leg in front of you; this challenges your core, glutes, and standing leg stability
So get up off the couch and walk to your next destination with lunges!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

FoCuS. StReNgTh. DeToXiFy.

We are all aware of the benefits of yoga...that long slender figure right? Well yoga is more than just a way to elongate and lengthen those muscles; it is a great way to find an inner connection with every part of your body! The better connection you have with your body, the better you are able to take care of that body and ultimately lead a long healthy happy life.

Today I took a Hot Yoga class in the Santa Clarita Valley. I absolutely love this type of exercise.

The heated room allows your muscles to stretch to their maximum capacity without injury.

Hot Yoga is also a favorite of mine because the heated room actually helps me focus and center within myself; no more worries about the rest of my schedule, how I am going to complete a project, or any family/friend stresses; I could literally feel my heart beat, feel the blood pumping thru my veins to support my taxed muscles and frame, and sense the oxygen flowing thru my lungs filling my body with energy. The body is an amazing machine that is sometimes overlooked....have you checked in with yours today?

Another great benefit of hot yoga is the natural detoxification process your body endures while trying to cool itself. This is similar to the effects of a sauna but not nearly as drastic (because the room is much cooler); the slow constant sweating rids your body of toxins and other foreign elements.

Give it a try! Take it easy and be sure to bring plenty of water for throughout the class, along with your yoga mat and towel. After completing the class I recommend a serving of coconut water to replenish all the lost electrolytes.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


How many of you feel like a piece of you is missing without that I-pod, MP3, or CD player??? Music has the power to energize us, motivate us, and get us thru times we didn’t think we would.

Trade CDs with friends, discover new music, and create some good playlists for the gym, the car, or just chillen’ at home. Nothing like an amazing playlist to get you thru that dreaded workout or that long drive home!!

Yes it takes time but trust me its worth it, it will change your mood!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


We have all had that sweet, salty Gatorade to quench our thirst after a difficult workout! Well there’s a new drink in town that is much much better for you!

There are several brands of this stuff from Zico, Vita Coco, O.N.E, and original coconut water…and even a variety of fresh flavors if you aren’t a fan of the plain.

Why drink this stuff:

• It has more potassium then a banana 569mg=consuming 15 sports drinks(great for repairing those tired muscles)

• 5 electrolytes (sodium, magnesium, calcium, potassium, phosphorus)

• No added sugar (Gatorade is loaded with HFC—high fructose corn syrup)

• Faster way to rehydrate (water lacks the electrolytes)

• No artificial chemicals!!!

Next time you complete one of your sweat sessions, take down a chilled coconut water…and see how restored and refreshed your body is!

Monday, August 9, 2010


I tempted these stairs yesterday and they kicked my butt!!! My heart rate was skyrocketing and sweat drenched my body. This is a great place to see some amazing homes, views of the beach, as well as some intense fitness gurus…trust me you will be motivated!!

You can choose between the concrete or the wood or make a circle comprising both!! The wooden set is a little more giving on the legs!

For an all over sweat sess, go down the stairs attempt some pull ups at the “pull up bar” (really a bar off an electrical pole but works perfect) or some triceps dips on the curb, then go up the stairs and complete a set of pushups. With each set of stair climb change you steps: side step, skipping every other step, going up backwards, and of course the single step forward climb.

I did 10 sets today and was toast….legs shaky and all! Try to go throughout the summer and up your sets each time!

Hope you see you there!

Remember use your outdoor gym!


4th Street & Adelaide Drive

Santa Monica, CA 90402

Friday, August 6, 2010

Got the afternoon munchies???

Snack smart, try these:

• Italian herb popcorn:

o In a large pot combine 2 tbsp of olive oil, ¼ tsp rock salt, 1 tsp Italian season, ¼ c of popcorn-mix evenly. Cover and heat on high. Listen for popping, once popping slows remove from heat.

o Popcorn is low in calories and a good source of fiber, folate, vitamin A, and Omega 6 fatty acids!

• Frozen watermelon:

o Chop watermelon in bite size pieces, place in a Tupperware container and freeze over night. This is a perfect snack for these hot summer days!

o Good source of Vitamin A, C, potassium, and folate

• Creamy sweet yogurt:

o In a small bowl, evenly mix ½ cup nonfat Greek yogurt, 1 tsp of cinnamon, and 1 tsp of agave.

o Non-fat Greek yogurt is low in calories and high in protein and calcium. Cinnamon contains Vitamin C, K, manganese and calcium!!

• Crunchy kale chips:

o Preheat oven 350 degrees. Chop cleaned and dried kale into bite sized pieces. Place parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Spread out kale on sheet, sprinkle lightly with olive oil, salt, and sesame seeds (if desired). Bake for 10 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes and enjoy!

o Kale has some incredible health benefits (much more than those white potato chips!). Kale is rich in calcium, lutein, iron, fiber, and Vitamins A, C, K and E!!! Kale is also low in calories and very low in fat!!!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Get Outside This Weekend!!

Nothing feels better than starting your Saturday with your best buds on one of Los Angeles' dusty trails.  Pack a camera, trail mix, and lots of water!  Hiking is a great way to change up your workout and get out of the mundane gym routine.  The challenging hills not only supply a good cardio workout but muscle toning for quads, glutes, and calves!!

  • All the hikes listed vary in views, intensity, and length
  • Make it a goal to try 'em all this summer!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Full Body Revitalization

Need to lose weight, gain muscle or just have general pain relief? I specialize in a full body revitalization. I will develop a work out plan customized to your needs and body. 

"Health is the vital principle of bliss, and exercise of health."
- James Thomson

“Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity.”

-John Fitzgerald Kennedy


Start Today!!



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