Last weekend I had a serious craving for muffins, but have been very dedicated to avoiding gluten, so I did a little research on paleo recipes for muffins, combined some ideas based on what I saw online and what I had in my cupboard, and went for it.Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 8.29.51 AM
Let me tell you these came out so darn good, a batch of 12 only lasted in our house for about 3 days! Even Phoebe wanted in on the paleo muffin action! 🙂

Preheat oven to 350°

In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients…

Dry Ingredients:
1/2 cup almond flour
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground ginger (next time I kinda want to try fresh ginger!)
1/3 cup dried cranberries

Then add the wet ingredients to the bowl…

Wet Ingredients:
6 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup shredded zucchini
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1/3 cup nuts of your choice (I used pumpkin seeds because that’s what I had available)
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Fill a 12-muffin pan with foil muffin cup liners (I used paper, and because there is literally no oil in this recipe, the muffins kind of stuck to the paper liners) and fill each cup about 3/4 full, and bake those babies for about 30 minutes. Add some grass-fed butter or almond butter to the muffin and enjoy! 🙂IMG_4598
1 muffin = 153 cal, 7.5g fat, 15g carbs, 6g protein, 4g fat!

Career crisis

BY 30 January 2015 Blog Entry

I have a desk job.

I am a graphic designer for a decent sized company, and have been working here for almost 7 years. I recently hit the age milestone of 30, and am almost at the weight milestone of 50lb lost… fitness and obstacle races have kind of taken over my life, and I feel GREAT…. most of the time. When do I feel not-so-great, or not-so-happy? — When I’m sitting at my desk all day at work.

Because of the aforementioned age milestone, I have been doing a lot of thinking… a lot of “what am I doing with my life, and how do I make my time on this earth full of happiness and adventure?” kind of thinking. Its a big question, and a lot of people out there in the world ignore it. I’m tired of ignoring it. I’m tired of the same old answers.

I want a change. I want to feel like the work I put in (whether it is into myself or others) to mean something. I want to help people, I want what I do to be an actual benefit to society, not a benefit to some executives wallet. I want others to experience what I’ve personally experienced; Success in fitness and diet, success in changing my lifestyle.

Last year I decided I want to become a full-time personal trainer. I want to teach bootcamps and train one-on-one clients, and help people live healthier lives. Since then I’ve obtained my certification in personal training through NASM, but have had trouble gaining momentum with finding the right opportunity to transition from my corporate job to personal trainer. With that great reward comes some serious sacrifice. As I’ve said before, I am 30. I’ve established a life for myself, with a mortgage and car payments and normal but not terrible amount of “grown-up-life debt”. I am accustomed to a certain paycheck, and in all honesty my husband is also accustomed to a wife that makes the hourly wage that I currently do. We are both used to this lifestyle and with a major career change comes a serious financial sacrifice. I won’t make the same money I once did. Therefore, I need to train myself to live off of that new (and significantly lower) income. I’m in the beginning stages of this. I am putting all my extra money into a savings account and trying my best to not spend money on frivolous things.

And you know what? It’s hard.

It’s amazing how hard the human habits are to break.

But I’m trying. This year is the year I am hoping to break free from the corporate world and begin a new path as a trainer, and I can’t let silly ideas like “corporate paycheck security” get in the way of my dreams. I’m not sure where my goals are going to take me, but I’m starting by getting an additional certification as a Spartan SGX certified coach. The amount of interest in Spartan races has spread like wildfire in my gym, and when I mentioned this certification to the owner of my gym, he lit up. That right there is a damn good reason to get this cert. bazu-4185545 Plus… I absolutely love those Spartan Races and I love the amount of positive influence they have on people. There are so many people out there that want to get up off the couch and run a Spartan race…. why not be one of the coaches that gets them in shape and across that finish line? That’s at least where I plan to start. 🙂

So in February I am going beyond my comfort zone and I’m attending a two-day seminar on what it takes to get certified as a Spartan Coach. I will be surrounded by amazing trainers, and elite athletes, all eager to learn the same thing. Part of me is extremely excited and can’t wait to have this amazing certification under my belt, and part of me is absolutely terrified. I guess that is the definition of leading a full life… finding things that terrify you, and knowing you HAVE to do them in order to better yourself. That is what this year, and this career change for that matter, is all about.

This year I’m makin’ it happen!

This past weekend Dave, myself and our good friend Eric drove down to Temecula to complete our 2014 Trifecta. Back in September we attempted this race during an insane heat wave, and had to race in extremely dangerous conditions – 107° heat out in the hills of Southern California with no shade in sight. Long story short, they ended up cutting the race short at the 8 mile marker and turning everyone around toward the finish line, so we weren’t able to complete the race. Because of this, they offered a complimentary do-over race in January, which we gladly registered for.

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Last weekend, we finally completed our 2014 Trifecta and our first ever 12+ mile Spartan Beast.IMG_4511 2014 Spartan Beast Finishers
Oh the glory of fitting all the pieces from my race medals in this medal case. I’m pretty proud of this hard-earned treasure.

ABOUT THE RACE: In a nutshell, it was grueling, challenging, and extremely difficult at times. But I was in much better endurance shape this time around than I was back in September. I had trained a lot more on hill running, and strength training, so I was able to complete almost all of the 38 obstacles on the course. I only had to do 60 burpees total for failing to complete 2 obstacles; the spear throw and the rope climb. (Someday I will defeat you, rope climb!!!)

MY biggest hurdle for these races is my calves cramping up around mile 6, and dealing with that for the entire second half of the race. I found that bringing a 50 oz camel bak, and also stuffing it with individual packets of almond butter were my saving grace. That almond butter provided good fats for energy and enough salt to keep my cramping calves manageable. I am definitely bringing almond butter on future races. Best decision ever.

They boys were a little jealous at the end of the race because I was the only one with a Spartan battle scar. I was wearing shorts during the race, and one the second to last obstacle, we slid down this giant hill into mud, and well, I hit a big rock that was hiding under the mud, which gave me a pretty good scrape and bruise on my right leg. This photo really doesn’t do it justice.
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It’s been 3 days since the race and the bruise looks pretty gnarly. I’ll be glad when this thing is healed, because it ain’t pretty and it doesn’t feel great either. Sure its cool to have battle scars after the race, but when you go back to normal life, the scab/bruise just gets in the way. HAHA

Dave and I are really looking forward to completing another Trifecta in 2015! This one was amazingly fun, and I can’t wait to see how we improve for our upcoming races this year!