Izakaya Den: Denver’s Best Sushi (Hungry’s Food Reviews)

This review is long overdue considering the fact that we went to Izakaya Den back in November. These lists of posts really stack up and we try hard to get them out but it’s not easy! So here you are… a review of what we have so far found to be the HIGHEST QUALITY SUSHI in Colorado. When we went, Sushi Den was closed for construction. Sushi Den is supposedly the more expensive and higher quality of the two but they are one in the same according to what we have heard.

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Here are the many positives and few negatives of our trip to Izakaya Den. The restaurant is in one of the most quaint and quiet communities in Denver. There are not neighborhoods like this in New York City and it’s nice to have such an escape in another busy city. The restaurant itself is pleasant looking on the outside and there is plenty of parking in the suburban-like neighborhood. We did go for a late lunch on a Holiday weekend with Fit’s parents so it was very empty, which meant quick service and the opportunity to explore. There were five of us in total and we were seated in a beautiful sun-room with plenty of table space.

Seating areas

Seating areas

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Nice bathroom

Nice bathroom

The service was again very quick and polite. It was months ago but I can’t think of a single complaint aside from the fact that the waiter was somewhat of a know-it-all and tried giving ME a lesson about sushi. Jiro… of course. Random Caucasian college student from Colorado… no thanks, no offense. The lunch menu was actually not very expensive even though the restaurant is known to be somewhat pricey. For the quality of food, the price was absolutely right.

We had a vegetarian, two spicy food lovers, myself, and someone with very specific and limited dietary needs. Everyone thought their meal was delicious, made them feel great, and most were full. (Me… not so much.) Plus, the bill was reasonable. Instead of talking too much about the food, I will say that everything was VERY good. No major complaints. You can look at the pictures. Oh, and obviously I am picky about eel quality but this was worthy of no complaints and just praise. Everything from the sushi rolls to sashimi to appetizers and dishes were all great. On top of that, the restaurant is spacious, exceptionally decorated and capable of entertaining every group. Whether its large groups, families, couples, or people who want to go to a bar… they have it. Izakaya Den earns our highest quality food stamp for the Denver area in Asian foods. That doesn’t make it our favorite, but it’s so damn good. Feast your eyes on these pictures. We will let you know how Sushi Den is when Alana passes her NASM exam (she doesn’t know about this… well now she does).

Edamame

Edamame

Tuna sashimi salad

Tuna sashimi salad

Beautiful sushi

Beautiful sushi

Unagi

Unagi

Mackerel

Mackerel

Lobster ramen

Lobster ramen

Tuna sashimi

Tuna sashimi

Visit Izakaya Den to stay hungry and fit!

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5 Ways to Stay Focused on Your Goals

If you’re one of our followers, you know I’m going through contest prep right now. It’s been a 6-week contest of cutting fat and building lean muscle, trying to create a “transformation.” Since my willpower week, the clean eating has been a cinch. Well, except when I went to Iowa for family reunion and had ice cream on a daily basis. After that vacation, it was hard to get myself as motivated as I was beforehand. I still followed a good eating plan and exercise routine but I wasn’t as into it, so I’d fall into some bad habits–mostly, it’s picking at food I shouldn’t have. We all sometimes have trouble staying focused on our goals and here are some tips to stay on track

1. Set your phone background to something motivational. I know what I want and I know how I can get it. But there’s always the gap of emotion, laziness, and impulse. This is a way to bridge that gap. Take a photo that inspires you, could be a picture of a physique you want or a place you want to get to. Whatever your goal is. Email it to your phone and set it as your background so that every time you look at it (and we all know our phones are with us 24/7). I even went and added some text to mine to remind me of my bad habit and stop my hand from snatching a little piece of something.

HOPE solo inspiration

A great motivator for me

2. Go back to the first image, post, “thing” that started you on this path. We all become inspired to complete a goal, one way or another. For me, for this goal, I was inspired by the contest page. Chris showed me the contest and he thought I could do well, maybe even win. I never thought I could win (okay maybe before I saw all the rest of the people joining), but his confidence in me and my imagination of what I could  transform my body into. It was a chance to test my willpower, to see how hard I could work. I look at that page and I feel those same feelings and I become inspired again.

3. Imagine yourself at the end. This is a huge one for me. I can feel tired after a day’s work, I can feel lazy, and make up some excuse of why I shouldn’t go 100% that day. But all it takes for me is to imagine myself at my completion, imagine what I can become, and that inspiration pops right up again. If your goal is to save enough money for a vacation to Greece, imagine yourself on the beach. If your goal is to lose those x number of pounds, imagine what you will look like, what you will feel like. I always like to imagine how strong I will become, mind, body, and spirit.

Actually developing some abs

Actually developing some abs

4. Set a schedule on your calendar. Whether you have a smart phone or a hard calendar (we have both), plan the days of your week. I used to do this a lot during college when I set up training sessions with my friends. And for this last week of the contest, I am scheduling my workouts each day. You don’t have to schedule all the way down to what exercises you’re going to do, but a general plan. Maybe back and biceps with a little cardio on Monday, Yoga and HIIT training on Tuesday, and so forth. Put it into your calendar (it’d be great if you could do reminders and alerts with your smart phone if you have one) and put the times too. Make what you want a priority, and that means making solid time for yourself.

Set a date!

Set a date!

5. Track your results. Whether that means calculating body fat percentage or watching your savings account go up, TRACK IT. Maybe you don’t see a difference (though you probably will), keep reality-based checkpoints that you can measure with. I hadn’t measured for a while and I finally did, finding that I had lost 2% body fat. It’s a great re-motivator if you feel like you’re hitting a plateau or sliding away. Find some way to track your results and goal, no matter what it is.

Seeing progress

Seeing progress

Those are 5 simple things you can do anywhere, anyhow. If you feel yourself sliding, try one of these tricks. They are sure-fire to keep you hungry and fit! 

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BONUS KITTY PIC

Kitties from the other side of the window

Kitties from the other side of the window

5-Minute Healthy Snack Recipe

Before we went to bed last night, I was feeling a little hungry and I also knew that my macros were a little low too. However, I was also feeling tired and lazy, and didn’t want to do anything with too much prep. So what better to combine two of my favorite things? Avocado and egg. This is low in carbohydrateslow in calories, and medium-high in healthy fats! Perfect for a snack any time of the day, but mine just so happened to be around bed time. This recipe takes no longer than 5 minutes and is so delicious to boot!

  • Prep Time: 1 minute
  • Cooking Time: 2-4 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 small avocado
  • 1 egg (we are house-sitting right now and get fresh eggs from the chickens every morning!)
  • Frank’s hot sauce (optional)

Directions

  • Cut avocado in half
  • Crack an egg and put it in a small saucepan on medium heat
  • While the egg is cooking, scrape out the avocado and place it on a plate kind of in a pile

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  • When the egg is done (I like over-easy), simply place the egg on top of the avocado and let the yolk drizzle out
  • If you’d like, pour some hot sauce on top (Frank’s + eggs= heaven)
Yum yum yum!

Yum yum yum!

And that’s it! A healthy, quick snack any time of the day. High in nutrients and it won’t break the calorie bank if you’re worried about that. The textures are gooey and warm–a melt in your mouth sinful sort of feeling. I can’t wait to make this again. Simple is usually the best way to go. Cheers! Use this recipe to stay hungry and fit!

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BONUS KITTY PIC

Even though he's taking my spot, he's so damn adorable

Even though he’s taking my spot, he’s so damn adorable

Quinoa Chia Bowl

I always like saying quinoa the wrong way (“kih-no-ah”) just to bug Chris, so it’s always great when it’s in my life more frequently. This is an easy (PEASY) recipe that is perfect for breakfast, but will serve as a nice refreshing snack anytime of the day. I was inspired by Happy Fit Mama when she instagrammed a picture of this dish. I had to try! It fit my clean-eating perfectly. After all, I’m getting close to the end of contest prep! She gave me the ingredients she used, but I went ahead and created the recipe with measurements and all. Kinda winged it, but it worked! Enjoy this perfect recipe for summer living.

Mmmmmm!

Mmmmmm!

Macros (for 1 serving)

  • Serves: 2
  • Calories: 208
  • Fat: 5g
  • Carbs: 33g
  • Sugars: 4g
  • Protein: 8.3g

Ingredients

  • 3/8 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp drizzled honey
  • 1/2 cup Silk Vanilla Unsweetened Almondmilk 

Directions

  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F
  • Mix together the quinoa, cinnamon, chia seeds, and honey in a small dish that can be put in the oven
Mixed up and ready for bake-age!

Mixed up and ready for bake-age!

  • Put in the oven for about 15-20 minutes (until well-bonded and kinda crisp)
THIS is the proper serving. If you eat the whole thing, double the macros at the top of the post

THIS is the proper serving. If you eat the whole thing, double the macros at the top of the post

  • Pour 1/2 cup almond milk over and enjoy!
Mmmmmm!

Mmmmmm!

Yeah it’s that easy. And I was able to have the other half for breakfast the next morning! Talk about a good deal. The texture of the chia seeds after baking and then drowned in almond milk is next to perfect. It feels like a truly wholesome meal whether you have it for breakfast or any other meal of the day. Use this recipe to stay hungry and fit!

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BONUS KITTY PIC

Sajah trying to help me with work

Sajah trying to help me with work

July/August Giveaway (and June Winners Announced!)

Two weeks late! I apologize for the delay but it’s been a very busy month at Hungry & Fit HQ, which will be relocating to another part of town soon. We’re being very picky about the new spot and time is of the essence so we will keep you updated on the new spot. More details to come soon. In the midst of a vacation sandwiched by two thirteen hour drives and working overtime as usual, we seem to have been unable to post the winner for our June giveaway of Moosejaw sunglasses. We want to get those out before the Summer is over! We decided to name three winners thanks to the generosity of Moosejaw and ourselves. We also will be throwing in a cool Moosejaw sticker. The winners are…

Please email your mailing addresses to hungryandfit@gmail.com if you want to redeem these prizes. Any prizes that are not claimed will be donated to a local organization of our choice.

Moosejaw

Since July is already halfway over it seems somewhat pointless to host a giveaway for July. Instead, we’re going to a July/August giveaway that is going to be much better than what July might have been. In fact, we’re going to do a double giveaway with two great prizes because we’re so excited for the month of August. We have talked with some of our favorite local businesses in order to arrange such an event and Frozen Kiss and BaliAsli, two of our favorites are helping us out with this one. Here are the prizes and here are the rules.

1. Frozen Kiss Colorado Flag Custom Tank Top – Any of the colors available in the store, any size for men or women. They fit each gender differently but are still awesome for anyone! That’s over a $30 value. Check out the Colorado Flag Tank Tops available through this link.

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How to win: This product is the creation of a man who comes from one place but is influenced by his travels to another. Tell us about your most important journey and how it made you think of home differently. Maybe you saw the poverty in a developing country and it made you appreciate what you grew up with a lot more than you did before! We want genuine tales commented below and our favorite story wins! (Oh, bonus points go to anyone that likes Frozen Kiss’ Facebook page or Etsy shop!)

2. ANY ITEM on BaliAsli’s Etsy Shop! – That’s right… we’re not messing around with this one. You can have any item available in the store. Whether it’s made of wax or yarn or something else, it’s your if you win the contest. Remember, this is totally free. Shipping is on us!

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How to win: This shop’s motto is “with love we create and share.” All of these goods are handmade and homemade. Even the yarn is taken from the sheep they raise in their backyard (just joking about that one). We want you to tell us about an instance in your life where you shared something incredible with someone. It doesn’t have to be something that you made or even a material good but we want to know what you shared and how you shared it. Hungry and Fit shares their advice on living a healthy life all the time. Comment your stories below for a chance to win this awesome prize. Oh… again, mega bonus points go to anyone that likes Bali Asli’s Facebook page, Etsy shop, and YouTube channel. We’re all about spreading the love and good feelings. Those clicks don’t cost you a penny.

If you are a winner for June’s giveaway, please email us your address so that we can send off your goodies! Email us at hungryandfit@gmail.com. Again the winners are:

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Email us ASAP if you are one of the above. And remember for everyone else, comment below for either or both prizes and we will select our favorite story! Spread the love to stay hungry and fit!

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Core-Po-rate Fitness (Staying Fit in the Office)

You might be thinking… why is the title written in such a manner? Well, this article is being published because of a single man who I consider to be a brother. I am sure in time you will find out more about some of my closest friends but “Po” and “Pablo” (these names are used to protect identities) are almost definitely my oldest closest friends. I have known them for the longest time of the few friends I stay in touch with on the regular. Therefore, the core comes from what you will be doing, the Po is for his name and it somewhat misspells but spells out the word corporate.

"Po" with a delicious donut

“Po” with a delicious donut

So Po texted me this morning and said that I “should do a post on a sweat-free guide to corporate fitness” because he seems to “feel all fat and bloated sitting at my office desk.” As he pointed out, “sweating is crucial to a healthy workout… but not conducive to business attire.” Well, Po is obviously very accurate in what he is saying. I know that everyone watches Bond movies and says how does Sean Connery/Roger Moore/Timothy Dalton/George Lazenby/Pierce Brosnan/Daniel Craig manage to be in such good shape and chase criminals at full speed for miles while wearing a very tight tuxedo or suit? We all know that it’s a movie and it’s very challenging to workout in that business attire for a few reasons.

Up and coming James Bond

Up and coming James Bond

First, you don’t want to ruin expensive clothes. Second, you lose a whole lot of range of motion when wearing button down shirts or skirts. Third, when you have those tight-fitting clothes on, your body temperature raises faster… causing you to SWEAT MORE. So we have to figure out how to increase someone’s physical fitness in the corporate world without sweating? Well, let’s talk about sweat, baby.

If dogs could sweat, SHE WOULD!

If dogs could sweat, SHE WOULD!

Sweat, more properly known as perspiration, is the release of fluids in mammals from two different glands that are more or less distributed over the skin of your whole body. Sweating is the body’s way of regulating its temperature in hot weather. In tropical climates near the Equator, especially in Southeast Asia, spicy foods are staples in diets because they help stimulate a sweat response which leads to water on one’s skins evaporating causing a cooling effect. Depending on the individual and many factors, the secretion of fluids can range from not so much to a ton. I have never perspired a lot, however a high school friend who captained the football and wrestling teams perspired just by sitting still. That is why we should not compare ourselves to one another and deal with your body when figuring out what you need to do. Males can perspire anywhere from 2-4 liters in an hour… which is a large range. Finally, men start perspiring much quicker than females, even though both genders have the same perspiration when they are exercising at the same intensity.

Beautiful picture of Alana sweating after a Spartacus workout

Beautiful picture of Alana sweating after a Spartacus workout

Now that we know the basics about sweating, how can we avoid it? Obviously, we sweat more when we exert more force on our muscles because they heat up and this doesn’t help our problem. We need to figure out a way to not sweat but still exert force on our muscles. It seems impossible. The issue here isn’t being able to find a way to exercise intensely while wearing business attire. It is how can we change our overall lifestyle, while coping with our occupation, in order to feel good all the time. That can be challenging when sitting down at a desk for eight or nine hours, even with a lunch break in the middle. I know how that feels when I am tied to my desk on Fridays, some nights and some weekends. So let’s outfit a day that can make us feel better because not everyone can afford a treadmill desk or is allowed to use a stability ball instead of an office chair.

Aside: That’s right everyone… there is something called a treadmill desk and you can research it more to find out about it. Otherwise, if you are working at a place where they don’t mind swapping office chairs for a stability ball, then please make that purchase and switch. Sitting on a stability ball forces you to utilize your core muscles while sitting and typically that results in better posture and a workout that lasts all day long. You can also bounce up and down and get a leg workout when people aren’t watching you! Do that in moderation and you won’t even break a sweat.

This is going to come back to the three basics of a healthy lifestyle: Exercise, nutrition, and rest. Make sure you are getting an ample amount of sleep every night before you have to wake up to go to work. I say 6-8 hours, which makes 7 seem like the magic number. Some professional athletes sleep 10-12 hours but there are studies that show that can actually have negative effects.

Make sure you are eating healthy meals throughout the day. If you are trying to stay lean, it helps to keep your metabolism fired up by spacing out 6-8 small meals that meet your macronutrient goals. If you don’t want to measure macros, then just don’t eat garbage. Eat well! Ask away if you want recommendations for office snacks that can help fight cravings for junk food and help keep your metabolism fired up.

Salad

Salad

Finally, try to get some physical activity in every day. You don’t need to hit the gym if it doesn’t fit your schedule. Fifteen minutes are all you need. I recommend working out when you wake up if you have a corporate job because then you can be happy with what you did and not have to think about what you’re going to work out for the rest of the day. Mike Chang just did a YouTube video on the same topic so check it out. But here is what I recommend for physical activity in the office to keep you loose. These are exercises that will not make you sweat but will help keep your metabolism up, joints healthy, and muscles loose.

This can make the difference! Photo from FitSugar

FlexingI’m not joking. When you flex your muscles, you are contracting them and then releasing the contraction. It’s the same thing you do with a weight but there is less resistance. When I drive for more than 3 straight hours I will typically sit straight up with my back off the chair and start contracting my abs. All of them one at a time (upper, lower, obliques) in a circuit. You can do it without thinking.

Flex!

Flex!

Bring a resistance band to work. Tie it up under your chair and do some side deltoid (shoulder) raises or front deltoid raises. You can do some curls also. If you want to wrap it around your ankles then you can do some leg extensions. Just by using proper posture and some very light weight exercises you can FEEL better. That is what this is all about.

Po is an athletic guy that is in good shape but sitting around makes him and all of us feel LAZY and bad about ourselves. Just by doing these exercises, with a range of motion that fits your attire, you can feel so much better about yourself while you are sitting down because you are trying. And a lot of these don’t take much time or effort but they can keep you loose, strengthen your joints, help stretch, and keep your metabolic rate up throughout the day. If you want recommendations about resistance tubes and bands, just ask away in the comment section below. Some are better suited for certain people. Plus, they are very easy to transport unlike heavy weights. And like I said, you can do those exercises without even thinking. Low risk of injury when using that type of resistance.

I will try to make a video of me dressed in business attire sitting at a desk doing these exercises so you get the idea but remember that this is about feeling better so do what you need to do to stay happy, hungry and fit! (REMEMBER that we are here for YOU and are willing to do posts on just about anything that you want to know more about. We will answer all requests and questions to the best of our ability no matter what the topic is related to. Just put what you want us to write about in the comment section below or email it to hungryandfit@gmail.com)

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BONUS KITTY PIC

Nymeria being cute

Nymeria being cute

Building Muscle & Losing Fat (Myths of Fitness)

Myths of Fitness might not be the greatest name for this series but it’s all we have for now. The whole reason that I made up such a boring and vague name comes from my immediate desire to spread this information. Now, I am sure that we have said this before, but it IS possible to lose fat and build muscle at the same time. Here I will explain it shortly without getting into detail about the scientific and specific aspects that are better explained through some links below. This is a better explanation for people who want to know the truth and those links provide the better explanations for those who want to know the reasons that make it true.

Hittin da gym in Iowa

Hittin da gym in Iowa

First and most importantly, you as an individual need to figure out what your goal is! The reason why I have a general problem with P90X, Insanity, Total Immersion Swimming, and other similar programs that are products you need to pay for is because they act like these programs are the solution to everyone’s needs. This obviously is not the case since all individuals interested in getting in better shape are different anatomically, physiologically, psychologically, etc. Basically, everyone is physically and mentally different from everyone else. So you need a program that caters specifically to your needs. While I have many problems with those products the one reason why I do like their popularity is that they are helping get people off of the couch. (Just be careful that once you get off the couch you don’t get hurt because it’s in the nature of some of those programs to accidentally let that happen.) But my rants about those products, triathlons, obstacle races, and Crossfit will come at another time. (It will be a “the good, the bad, and the ugly.”)

Going back to how I started the last paragraph… what is your goal? If you want to be massive then your goal is hypertrophy and mass gain. If you want to be super lean then you’re on the other side of the spectrum. If you want to maintain your appearance, it’s another different story. Professional bodybuilders, pro athletes, endurance athletes, martial artists, dancers, professional eaters, and everyone else on this planet should take different approaches to reaching their goals and this is where we come back to that myth of not being able to build muscle and lose fat at the same time.

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If you focus on one goal (I struggle with this) then it is typically easier to achieve. Or at least you can achieve it quicker. Bodybuilders go through a bulking cycle where they pack on extra mass and fat in order to help their muscles go through hypertrophy. Once they have achieved their desired size in terms of specific muscle groups, they continue to exercise rigorously while cutting. While they are in a cutting cycle, they will lower their body fat and mass significantly while maintaining a significant amount of their hypertrophic progress in their muscles. That is the end result of what you see when you watch the Olympia or the Arnold Classic. I won’t go into significant detail about their diet and supplementation other than the fact that they try to eat more calories while bulking and a caloric deficit while cutting. This is the optimal way to maximize gains in a mere aesthetic manner.

However, if you are more interested in building “functional” muscles (don’t take me using functional literally. Every workout leads to the growth of functional muscle. Some would argue that some forms are more “functional” or useful than others) then you should consider find what program suits you best. Everyone can be classified as a mesomorph, ectomorph, or endomorph. (See our old glossary of fitness terms for an explanation.) In order to find the perfect mix of macronutrients and exercise in order to build muscle and lose fat you need to go through something called… trial and error. I cannot be convinced that there is a single “adonis ratio” that calculates every person’s needs equally. We are all far too different. You can hire “coaches” to help you and guide you but be careful and make sure they have your best interests in mind. You might hear of a coach telling a client to eat under 20 grams of fat a day. Please do not listen to them. You need fat to control hormone production and for hundreds of other functions. But that is another post we’ll talk about at another time.

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Bottom Line: You can build more muscle if you are just trying to build muscle. You need the excess calories and other factors to help you gain mass. You can cut more fat is you are just trying to cut fat. You need the caloric deficit and other factors to help lose fat. However, if you are interested in doing both at the same time… you can. Obviously it isn’t possible to maintain a caloric surplus and deficit at the same time but for beginners, overweight individuals, and exceptional people it is more likely to be able to build muscle and lose fat at the same time. Also, depending on your macronutrients, you can “build muscle” (in various ways, not mass necessarily) while on a slight caloric deficit or a caloric balance. You won’t build quite as much muscle or lose quite as much fat, but you can still be efficient and help reach YOUR goals. Don’t listen to anyone else since you have YOUR goals and it is YOUR body. My goal right now… be happy in life. If I want ice cream then I’m having ice cream. And you should do the same because happiness is a key factor in staying hungry and fit.

Gettin' some Frisbee Golf on

Gettin’ some Frisbee Golf on

Here are two great links to two great individuals that I look up to in the scientific side of the fitness industry. Jim Stoppani provides individuals with hundreds of phenomenal workout programs… many for free. Congratulations to Dr. Layne Norton in the birth of his son. Best of luck to your family.

http://www.cutandjacked.com/CutAndJacked-Ask-Dr-Layne-Norton

http://www.jimstoppani.com/home/questions/187

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Chocolate Strawberry Lean Protein Shake

By complete accident, this is the most delicious, simple, and healthy protein shake I have ever made. It’s been about 90+ degrees all week here, and today I chose to wear long-legged under-armor (I’m a trainer so I wear workout gear to work), and unfortunately, the AC in the trainer office was broken. On the ride home, my heat kept rising and I knew I needed something cold, refreshing, and nutritious. After all, I am still prepping for contestThis is also the first time I’ve had protein powder since my protein shake hell week, so I was a little nervous because my at the end of that week, my body started feeling disgusted towards that stuff. But don’t worry, it was allllll good. Please follow this SIMPLE on-a-whim recipe for a healthy delicious protein shake. Here are the macros:

  • Calories: 193
  • Fat: 5.7g
  • Carbs: 11.5g
  • Protein: 26.5g
DELICIOUS.

DELICIOUS.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Silk Vanilla Unsweetened Almondmilk
  • 6 frozen medium strawberries [if you don’t have frozen strawberries, you can use regular and throw some ice cubes in]
  • 1 scoop MTS Machine Whey Chocolate Protein

[Yup. That’s it.]

Directions

  • Measure out a cup of unsweetened almond milk 
  • Place 6 frozen strawberries in the blender

photo 3 (13)

  • Put one scoop of protein powder in and blend! I let it blend for a while longer than usual, probably about 20-30 seconds.
DELICIOUS.

DELICIOUS.

THAT’S IT. Ridiculously simple. I was actually in awe when I first tasted it. I really didn’t expect it to be that delicious. What’s better than chocolate and strawberries? Exactly. Look at those macros and tell me this isn’t perfect. You will feel so full and so satisified after (I felt like this was a cheat meal because it was so delicious, but it was the opposite). DEFINITELY use this to stay hungry and fit! 

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BONUS KITTY PIC

Cuddle demons

Cuddle demons

Easy Korean-Style Beef Bowl

If you know us, we love Korean food (as Chris spent a summer in South Korea and consequently fell in love with the culture he had already been into). So when I stumbled upon this fantastic easy (ridiculously easy) recipe by one of my favorite food bloggers, I had to recreate it (altered it slightly)! Mine may not look as pretty, mostly because it was all for Chris so he got the entire beef bowl (4 servings) so that you can’t see the rice (oops!). My version of the recipe has less sugar, less spice (Chris has a Geographic Tongue, so he can’t have spice), and brown rice instead of white. Makes it a little bit healthier, but it was healthy from the start.  He had worked a long day at work, and I was taking a rest day on workouts, so I decided to make him something that he would love and fill him up...Korean style!

photo 2 (16)

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 10 minutes
  • Serves: 3-4 normal people (Chris ate it all)

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame teriyaki sauce
  • 1/4 crushed red-pepper flakes [you can use more if you like spice]
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1.5 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • cooked brown rice

Directions

  • Mix together the brown sugar, soy sauce, sesame teriyaki sauce, ginger, sesame seeds, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. It’d be best to use a fork or a whisk to really blend everything together.

photo 1 (18)

  • Leave that to the side. Heat up the oil in a saucepan over medium to high heat. Add the chopped garlic to the oil

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  • Once you get that lovely cooking garlic smell, it’s time to throw the ground beef in. Cook it until it’s browned, breaking it up as you do. Could take 4-8 minutes depending on your stove. While it’s cooking, chop up your green onions.
So purdy

So purdy

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  • Drain the excess fat (ew). Stir in the magical mixture we created at the start, letting it get to all of the meat and soak up the flavor. Add the green onions as well. By this time, it will be smelling goooood. 

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  • And serve over rice! It’s smart to cook it beforehand so it’s ready there waiting for you.

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You won’t be able to see the rice in my dish, because it’s smothered by the beef! It was such an easy, quick recipe (perfect for summer days when it’s too hot to cook a lot), I would do it again in a heartbeat. Chris loved it and literally ate the whole pound of ground beef plus the rice. Guess it was alright. Thanks to DamnDelicious for the recipe and use it to stay hungry and fit!

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BONUS KITTY PIC

Sajah watching me cook

Sajah watching me cook

21-Day Shred Time

So it’s the last three weeks of prepping for my contestand it’s time to shred! I’ve been doing really well eating and exercising, working hard (except for my little ice cream vacation). It just so happened that at this time, I saw that celebrity trainer, Ashley Conrad, had a 21-day “Clutch Cut” programPerfect. With my main coach, Chris (aka Hungry), giving me the thumbs up to do this program, I was excited to get started. Click on that link and you’ll see the program. It’s a lot of high-intensity stuff, cardio, lifting, and nutrition. You need all three to make a difference.

Building up my back and shoulders

Building up my back and shoulders

I just finished Day 3 which was a rest day. I’m not a huge proponent of rest days for myself during this contest, especially on week days, but I did the best I could. All I did on Day 3 was run a mile and do some core. No lifting. Day 1 was an intense circuit with 15 minutes of HIIT (high-intensity interval training) on the treadmill. All in all it was probably a little over an hour for the workout.  And it was good. I would love to do this with my clients. I would recommend it to anyone who’s trying to build muscle and burn fat. Here it is:

  • Clean and press
  • Overhead med ball throws
  • DB rear lunge
  • Pushups
  • Bench dips
  • Sprint in place
  • Bodyweight squat
  • Lat pull down
  • Med ball jumping jacks
  • Incline pushup
  • DB curl
  • Lateral raise
  • 1 arm row

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For pictures and instructions, check out the link above. For this circuit, you are supposed to do 4-6 sets (I only had time for 4, but got a killer workout) with 30 sec rest in between (I didn’t take the rest to increase cardio). It was great and hit all parts of my body. Two days later, my hamstrings are still sore and those are sometimes hard to hit for me so yay! There was also a core circuit at the end you can check out.

Day 2 was a killer cardio workout. I used the treadmill (she says you can use treadmill, stairmaster, bike, or whatever). It was 25 minutes of intervals:

  • 60 second walk
  • 30 second jog
  • 60 second sprint

It was important to put your all into this and I did. I did so much so that I had a headache for the rest of the day and was exhausted (oops for working out early). It really worked me hard, and that’s what HIIT does, which is why I LOVE it.

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For the nutrition part, I’m just doing what I have been, eating clean: lean protein, complex carbs, and healthy fats. Keeping me strong and healthy. She says to go gluten-free, but I don’t completely do that. I’ve followed my plan and it’s working well this program. If you’re looking to build muscle and cut fat, do this program! I’d love to have someone to do it with anyone for the next 3 weeks–the more the merrier! Use this Fit-approved program to stay hungry and fit!

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