recipe

Running in Place

Well due to the heat of the Boston Marathon, maybe it’s a good think I couldn’t run it this year… although I still would have liked to!  But being smart and respecting that my knee is injured, not running was a good decision.  That being said, I went to the orthopedist last week and he looked at it and took X-Rays. Basically, what he said was that its more of a chronic thing from a physiological standpoint—that my hips rotate inward slightly putting more pressure on my knee joint.  Therefore, in his example, I could go run like 3 marathons and be fine, and then decided to do an easy 10k and have had this happen.  There’s no real predictor for it.

Got my MRI results back this morning and here is what the doctor told me: I have a slightly torn Meniscus and light arthritis in my left knee.  That gave me 2 options, surgery or cortisone shot and Physical Therapy.  The surgery was just a bad idea altogether because it would just be removing the Meniscus and making the arthritis more susceptible to worsening.

The Cortisone shot will take the pain and inflammation away and get me back to training,  Overall what this means is that someday my running had a stop sign.  Whether that's 10 years or 50 years, we can't say, but by doing the PT and the cortisone shot, I can preserve it as long as possible.

So that being said, I can pretty much go back to training tomorrow,  taking it easy the first day, but then pretty much good to go.  So I guess its not good news, but since there's nothing I can really do about it, it's not that big of a deal! And I figure hell, in 20 years we'll have the technology to fix this anyway so I'll be good for life! So he gave me orthotic inserts for my shoes and I am using those when I run.  Also got all my new gear in from K-Swiss and the Wattie Ink Team and I’ve heard these Kwicky Blade Lights run really well.  Also, with the knee, I don’t think I am going to do Florida 70.3  This would be a half Ironman on May 20th, but instead I think I am going to do an Olympic Triathlon in North Florida.  Honestly, it’s not really any easier, as my instructions from my coach are “to cross the finish line and fall over and die”.  Like, we’re talking ball out.  I also don’t know that I would be in quite the shape I want to be in for an Ironman race, plus they are expensive.

This was the first week I was finally able to pick training back up a bit.  I got to run some this weekend and it felt good, although I kept the pace moderate and didn’t do any kind of intervals, etc.  Also spent a fair amount of time on the bike…well, on the bike in my apartment—thank God the Capitals and NHL Playoffs are on!  Even though the Caps lost their first game!! (My playoff beard is coming along nicely as well, although I did get to trim since the Caps won their first series—and so I wouldn’t get fired lol).  However, they won Monday and are in OT right now but I can’t bare to watch

I really focused on my recovery this weekend as these sessions were a little more taxing and I bring back in quality work efforts.  I made awesome recovery shakes which I drank even though I knew dinner would be soon after.  The first was a mix of a chocolate CorePower drink, chocolate protein powder, and some MCT oil (medium-chain triglycerides—I’ll talk more about this in an upcoming post).  The second was whole coconut milk with protein and a banana.  There’s nothing better than flopping on the floor with an ice cold shake and just zoning out for a bit after a workout!

I also decided to try out a couple new “recipes” this weekend.  Well, that’s a lie, but I grilled a couple new things.  The first was some delicious grass-fed filet mignon steak!  I seared them in a skillet then finished them in the oven.

The second was some grilled chicken breast wrapped in bacon!  I finally went down to the pool and cranked up the grill—it was awesome!

 

Lastly, I roasted half a Kabocha squash in the oven covered in a mix of coconut butter and coconut oil--awesome!  Plenty of cinnamon of course too.

 

That’s all for now--I have a lot more updates, but those will come later this week!

  1. Have you ever had a Cortisone shot?
  2. Best new recipe or idea you want to share?

N = 1

An experiment of one.  What works for one person may not work for another.  People are different and thus respond differently to different stimuli.  Some may be incredibly healthy on a vegan diet and some may thrive on a paleo style diet.  It’s all about what makes you look, feel, and perform better. So beginning last week, I have been seriously trying to be better about my eating plan the my nutritionist has helped me design.  Yes, Chuck, embracing eating a little more and seeing what my performance does.  Now, granted, I’ve only been doing this for about a week, and my sleep hasn’t been on point, but I have felt good, especially amid a big training week.  I have been focusing on workout recovery, even when it comes to the times when I know dinner will be coming soon after the workout, I am still eating.  And it’s good, because it always turns out the dinner never actually occurs soon after the workout, ha!  Why does it take me so long to prepare it every night?  Damn squash fries…

The  biggest changes are just working on being more consistent, even on lower volume days, knowing that I’ve created a deficit during the big days.  I’ve been reading a lot from some of the top pro athletes who have experimented with optimizing recovery and eating more, better, quality foods.  We’re not talking Snickers bars that I’m shoving down, but sweet potatoes, coconut milk and oil, grass-fed meat, chicken, etc…. even all natural, organic bacon! (Yes, me!)

As Robb Wolf says, “try it for 30 days” and if I don’t like it better, I can go back to the way I was before… but we all know that wasn’t getting me anywhere.  I’m RACING this weekend!!

And I’m determined to focus on eating appropriate calories during this race so that I perform optimally.  I usually just try and eat “just enough to get me through” so that I can “save up” calories for my post-race dinner.  This is moronic.  If I want to be great, I need to fuel that, plus that deficit is going to be so big all of it will be used (including that dinner) to fuel me and help me recover.

Speaking of previous race, I’m realizing that I’m good, but I’m not great.  I’m stuck maintain habits that have kept me “good” as well.  I have a world champion coach with 16 years of experience who is asking me to change a few things.  If I want to be great, wouldn’t listening make sense? Clearly, my way is adequate, but not ideal.  So embracing this, I am ready to move forward.

We had a great training day at Fort DeSoto this weekend and it was a lot of fun to just hang out and enjoy the beach afterward.  Can’t complain about having this in my backyard:

And speaking of good food—here were some delicious, however, not very appetizing (and I’ll admit to that) meals from the past weeks!

So I can’t wait for the half ironman Sunday!  Wish me luck!

  1. Have you made any big changes in your life lately?
  2. What’s your n=1 for 30 days?
  3. Anyone racing this week??

 

Are you at 110%?

Life has many components—the main ones being family, friends, health, career, God, and your passions.  To me, the goal of life to be actively giving all of these the attention and time they need.  If you do that, then you are living your life to the fullest, at 100% percent of your potential. I’ll be honest, I’m not.  I’d give myself 80%, at best. Whose fault is that?  Mine.  This post is not meant to be negative be any means, but rather a kick in the butt to me and anyone else who needs a little inspiration to get out and do more—to feel more alive!  Here’s where I’m struggling: Balance. Here was last week in numbers:

Swim: 10,050 yards

Bike: 8+ hours

Run: About 33 miles (missed one run)

Fun with friends: 0

Church: 0

Work: Plenty

Sleep: Not nearly enough!

Here’s an example of my lame weekend—go to bed way too late, wake up, train, eat, go back to bed for a nap, train, eat, go to bed way too late.  Repeat on Sunday.  Let’s see, were friends mentioned in there? Was going out and doing something fun mentioned?  (And no, my trip to Whole Foods doesn’t count).

Granted, I’ve had a hard time making a lot of new friends here in Tampa and that has been frustrating (if you live here, get at me!), but in the same vein, my attempts at making friends haven’t been overly abundant.  This is probably because I prioritize working out on my weekends, which is FINE to do, but only if I don’t go back to bed after!  As for family, I had a great time when they visited last week, but I definitely bailed out of a lunch my mom had planned so that I could go eat food I was comfortable with and then take a nap before I worked out in the afternoon.

Sob story right?  Na, this is my pledge, my vow to get my life to 110%!  Why not 100%?  Because that’s where I could be, but I want to reach above that, go beyond that—I want to find a way to not only improve my life, but improve the environment I am in.  To make other people happier, more successful, and help them reach their goals.  The best part about this is the reward it brings me and motivation to stay committed to my goals.  This also means volunteering and going to church—I spend a lot of time praying, but that’s not the same as taking the time to give God the time he deserves.

 

So what’s my plan to make this happen?

Action plan for 1/23 – 1/30:

  • Go to bed earlier.  Seriously, by 1 every night for this week
  • No wasting time drawing dinner out
  • Workout in the morning both days this weekend
    • Thus, due to going to bed earlier and working out in the morning…
  • Do at least 1 fun thing this weekend during the afternoon or night
    • There is a huge Gaspirilla Festival this weekend… which has something to with pirates—apparently it’s a big deal
  • Dominate my workouts
    • This includes eating right and including recovery after the workouts.

 

So Keep me honest!  We’ll review next week!

Last thing is that I’m going to be starting a podcast with a friend of mine, Max.  This is going to legit—we will be discussing health, nutrition, training, and interviewing some really cool (and famous) people.  We’ll also be answering any questions you have, so if you start to develop some, let me know and we’ll answer them each week!  Look for the first show to come out later this week where Max and I introduce ourselves a bit and discuss the purpose of the show!

Oh, and check out these awesome meatloaves I made- let me know if you want the recipe.

And check out this article! Does the guy in the picture look familiar?

  1. What is one thing you will change for a better this week?
  2. How much do you sleep every night?

When Life Gives You...

...Milk jugs?  You find a way to get it done! (read further below..)

Merry belated Christmas and happy new year everyone.  I’m flying back from DC now, back to Tampa, where I spent the past week celebrating the holiday with my family.  It was awesome and my family were way to generous.  But it also felt great to give them their presents and know that they really appreciated them.

My dad got my brother and I tickets to the Capitals game on Wednesday night and it was great to see them crush the Rangers (even though any other night, I would root for the Rangers).  We got there early enough to get some sweet shots of boys warming up!

It was also pretty simple to stick to my paleo diet style.  Not that this was hard, but Christmas dinner had amazing smoked turkey, roasted potatoes, and I made some amazing mashed butternut squash!  The whole week, I really tried to focus on following my meal plan and sticking to real foods- not protein powders etc.  However, I of course had a couple Christmas cookies, and my mom made homemade pizza one night... yes!

Of course, this was the same night they decided to take ever set of car keys to go off on various errands, leaving me with no transportation to get to the gym.  No worries- I’ll just set up the weights in the basement and do a hard metabolic circuit workout, right?  No- Apparently we sold all the weights.. great, what now?  Well milk jugs weight about 8.35 pounds... So I taped those securely shut and made a baller workout!  So this is a workout you can do if you’re ever in a pinch!

I started with a 7 mile run around the neighborhood and then did 11 rounds of the following circuit:

  • 5 x Squat, clean, and press
  • 10 x Squats
  • 10 x Rear back flys
  • 10 x bicep curls
  • 10 x shoulder press
  • 10 x Chest press to fly
  • 15 x push ups
  • 2 burpees
  • 15 jumping jacks
Here are some of the exercises:

Awesome workout!  Took a while to crank it out too!  Here are what the exercises look like- sorry for some of the blurry pictures and outfit... it was cold outside and the milk was cold!

Finally, I did a lot of the goals I wanted this week.  I ran outside and untimed a lot!  No idea any of the paces, but I didn’t care.  I also swam a number of times- granted, I never left myself enough time to do a full length workout after running and biking, but I did get 3-4 good sessions in this week.  And I tried out some new recipes!  I made a bunch of variations of pumpkin/ butternut squash pancakes (made with eggs, bananas, protein powder, and almonds!) Talk about healthy!

So if you’re in a pinch this week, give that workout a try!  And you don’t need to do 11 rounds... that's kind of unnecessary lol.

Hope y’all had an amazing Christmas and New Years and I’ll write again soon!

  1. What was the best gift you received/ gave?
  2. What was the best thing you ate?

'Tis the season for giving

Christmas is almost here!  Can you believe that... Actually, I can, it's been a pretty busy, long, good year. It's that time of year when there's at least one radio station that only plays Christmas music and you go to the mall to get pictures with Santa

I gotta mention, one radio station here started playing Christmas music, like, the week BEFORE Thanksgiving.  Seriously? I love Christmas time, but that's a little ridiculous.

So as the year comes towards an end, I'm determined to make 2012 the best year ever... but that means starting now! Don't wait till January 1st to act on your "resolutions" and "goals"--do it now! I have gotten a lot of information about my healthy back lately, it's not all too hot. But I have an amazing new nutritionist and she totally gets me... which is such a relief and inspiration. A huge point for me is being able to respect the nutritionist, and basically, look up to her, and know that, for once, she knows more than I do about nutrition and exercise.  She and I had a great meeting today, but I'll wait for a later post to go into all the details about that and my health... Feel free to leave any questions.

But not, I realized I haven't posted any good eats or recipes in a while! So I give you Slow Cooker beef stew! I made this last weekend and it's so easy but so good!

Start by buying the highest quality ingredients:

Chop it into "stew size" pieces:

Then toss with flour (to make the gravy once you put it in the slow cooker) and brown in a skillet

Add all this to slow cooker and add enough water to cover.  I also added some tomato puree to add a little more flavor. Allow to cook on low for about 8 hours. At hour 7, add in whatever vegetables you want, like carrots, potatoes, and onions.  I had a bunch  carrots!

Recipe:

  • 2 lbs grass fed cubed steak
  • 2-3 tablespoons flour (I used coconut flour)
  • 3/4 cup tomato puree
  • Lots of fresh carrots (and vegetables as you'd like)

This was one of my better slow cooker creations, and the best part is that it freezes really well so that I have it for weeks.

Speaking of Alton Brown good eats, here's a delicious avocado mash chicken breast I made:

Now, lastly, I mentioned the fact that it's the season to give, right?  My friends at PowerBar were kind enough to send me some of their products to use in my training.  I love their gels, as I try to keep my diet as clean as possible at all time--in and out of training--and their gels are really good to compliment my nutrition.  They use a dual-carbohydrate source, so that way your body isn't just relying on one source to replenish glycogen for energy and keep you going longer.

And who doesn't love some free Peanut Butter PowerBars? But since it's the Christmas season, I want to share some of this with y'all!  I'm giving away a box of Peanut Butter PowerBars each to TWO winners! Here's how to enter:

  • Leave me a comment on here and tell me your favorite gel flavor, or what you think would be a good idea for a new flavor
  • Follow me on Twitter (if you have it) @Chuckfeerick and tell me that you want to win--and mention @PowerBar too!
  • Spread some Christmas spirit to those who are less fortunate than us.

Entries will close this Friday, December 9th.

Thanks for reading guys, and I'll have an update again soon!

  1. What's you favorite Christmas tradition...and cookie?
  2. What fitness/nutrition/racing questions do have for me?