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I made this cauliflower sauce a couple weeks ago (with my own variations) and enjoyed it immensely. And then I saw this roasted red pepper zucchini noodles and thought… hey now, I can combine those two ideas.  And it will rock.

And here you have it: a creamy cauliflower sauce with roasted peppers and feta. And yes, I think it does indeed rock.
red pepper feta sauce

This makes entrees for 2 people and 2 servings of leftover sauce. You could certainly serve the sauce over pasta, too.

1 pound zucchini – spiralized into noodles (or yellow summer squash, I used one medium of each)
1 pound cauliflower florets
2 cloves garlic
1 cup chicken or veggie broth (plus 1/3 to 1/2 cup additional water, broth or milk)
4 oz roasted red peppers (2 peppers. I used jarred ones.)
2 ounces feta cheese (or goat cheese)
salt & pepper
(optional, 4 ounces cooked turkey breast or chicken breast)

 

1. Divide the noodles between 2 plates. Microwave each for 3 minutes and set aside. (Perfect al dente noodles).
2. Place the cauliflower, broth, and garlic in a saucepan, cover it, and boil until cauliflower is very soft, 5-8 minutes probably but I didn’t time it.
3. Transfer the cooked cauliflower and garlic to a blender pitcher (be careful, it’s hot!) and add roasted red peppers and feta. Add additional water, broth or milk as needed to get it all to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Be a bit aggressive with the salt and pepper since the zucchini noodles dilute the flavor a bit.
4. Pour 3/4 cup of sauce over each plate of noodles, and if desired, heat and add turkey or chicken for a protein boost.

(You’ll have 2 servings of sauce leftover).

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Turn to People Instead of Food

I read something in a book a month or so ago about turning to people instead of turning to food for soothing emotions. And I thought “well isn’t that simple!”

But in it’s simplicity, also novel to me.

I’m an introvert. I often default to “fix it myself” whether I’ve broken a drawer handle or sunk into a spell of bad anxiety – something in me wants to help myself out of it. So when it comes to emotional management, I’ve amassed a slew of techniques through years of research and experimentation. My arsenal includes releasing, reattribution, reframing, managing my expectations, and accepting or correcting sabotaging or distorted thoughts depending on if its feeling like a CBT day or an ACT day.

But just “turning to people instead of food?” So simple. The place I’m not inclined to look. Outside myself.

And I’m finding this simple strategy a powerful one to add to the emotional management skill set I have and can share with my clients.  I am pretty good at not turning to food for emotions, and am proud that I stopped eating emotionally years ago. But sometimes I’m not good at finding another way to manage uncomfortable feelings, so I just sit with them “unmanaged” instead of eating – which is preferable I’d say, but leaves room for improvement.

So lately I’m trying to reach out more to people and just talk.  Most of my uncomfortable emotions are about my back or physical disability or loneliness or loss of being a fit person… so there’s nothing anyone else can do to “fix it” or give me advice, but it helps all the same.

I encourage you to give it a try if like me, it’s something you wouldn’t instinctively do. And let me know how it goes. We’re on this journey together.

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How to Become a Nutrition Coach

Dear Georgie, I’ve been exercising for a long time but only been getting into nutrition seriously within the year and a bit.  I’ve been picking up all kinds of books and listening to tons of podcasts about nutrition that I’ve come to realize; maybe I should be considering a career in this field.  I respect you and the career you’ve built for yourself. I was wondering if you could help point me in the right direction. I have a professional theater degree from a college but not a bachelors. I think I’ll do the ISSA certification, but what is the next step past certification? I imagine facebook will be helpful but what should I expect once I’ve passed certification?I can’t thank you enough for taking the time to respond to me. It’s really means a lot to me. – Jonathan

Happy to help, Jonathan! And I can’t blame you, it is pretty much the best job on earth. The ISSA, NESTA, ISSN, and ACE certifications are all ones I would recommend. The certification part is actually the easiest part in terms of being direct and knowing what you need to do.
Afterward though, things can be a bit confusing because you need to 1. Figure out your system and 2. Get some people to practice on.nutrition coachFiguring out your system includes deciding how you want to assess your clients (online questionnaire or paper, what do you want to ask, etc), how you want to structure your conversations, and what type of methods you want to use with people (giving them a meal plan, giving them general goals to work on each session, teaching them habits, calculating macros, having them log everything they eat, count calories, etc. Some of these topics may be outlined in the certification you do. Basically you just want a rough plan of what you’ll do once you have someone in front of you.
Then, you need some people!
Finding people can be done locally or online, you can often recruit people from local gyms or fitness establishments like a personal training studio. I’d make it a SMALL fee rather than free, because people don’t really value free stuff and you’ll get a lot of no-shows which is a waste of your time! Many people getting started with nutrition coaching also use their family and friends to practice on. Anyone who’s willing to give you 45-60 minutes of their time can be a great person to practice on. Even if you only see them once, you can practice assessing them and doing your first session (which is often the most impactful).
So start with doing that certification and learn as much as you can. As far as developing the system, wait until you see what the certification gives you – the materials might have an outline or assessment you can use and you might feel ready to go after you finish it.If you need a hand, I do the system building part (how to assess, what to talk about, what to give your client to do at the end of the session for next time) in my mentoring service – and that only takes one month so you can figure $300 total. It’s usually one or two phone calls to get someone who has a certification ready to get some people.
Hope this helps! Good luck with your cert and keep me in the loop!
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Group Coaching Opening

Let me tell you about a hypothetical set of twins.

On a beautiful spring afternoon, ten years ago, twenty nine year old twins were at the park with their families. They were very much alike. Both were in love with their husbands who adored them back. Both were personable, successful, educated and had desire to live a full and happy life. Both had a child, each was five years old. There was just one thing that was bothering them both.

On that beautiful day both were getting winded playing with the children, for they were both around forty pounds overweight. After some soul searching and some talking they both decided to lose the weight.

After a year they were both successful. Each had exercised, each had embraced healthy eating, and each had lost the forty pounds. But there was a difference.

Fast forward to today. One of the twins is now fifty pounds heavier, often unnecessarily feeling shameful, and is down at the bookstore browsing the diet section looking to start yet another diet.

068

The other is loving being active, has kept the weight off and doesn’t think about it anymore. She’s spending her energy on living life and having fun. She’s planning a trip to Italy with her daughter. She’s free.

italy-segway-tours

What made the difference

Have you ever wondered, as I used to, what makes this kind of difference in people’s lives? It isn’t always a native intelligence, or talent, or dedication. It isn’t that one person wants success and the other doesn’t. It isn’t the best diet plan either.

The difference is that successful people adopt permanent, stress free behaviors that become habits. The people that don’t succeed are the ones that are always on a program, on another diet, never making permanent changes.

What happens when you diet? The diet ends. Which is only good for someone selling you another diet book, or their “special foods”.

That’s why I’m writing you today, to help you end the dieting madness and become lean for life, and to make you an offer that I think you’ll like.

A weight loss program like no other

We’re unique, our program is the only program that combines the following:

  • Habit based. There are a lot of people and programs talking about being habit based, but they don’t teach you how to master them. We’ve all tried to do something every day and it didn’t work. We teach you how to actually make your habits work with our science based 4 step process.
  • Evidence based. Every part of our program is research backed. We focus on nutrition obviously, but just as important is the psychological aspect of change.
  • Proven to work. We’ve coached thousands successfully to lose tons of fat. Many online programs are coached by people that haven’t actually coached before.
  • Suitable for you. For our habit based system to be the best program out there we needed to be confident it was good enough to work for everyone. It had to work for busy executives, stay at home moms, elite athletes and everyone else. It did. Cross country skiing, gold medalist Chandra Crawford used our habit based system to stay in shape for years. Other Olympians too. I bet you would have thought that Olympians get special treatment? Their needs are indeed different but the coaching system is the same for everyone.
  • Risk free. There are no contracts, you pay month to month. You will go until you decide to stop, or you graduate from out system.
  • Easy. To work in real life our system has to be as stress free as possible. And it is. You won’t be burdened with weird point systems of tracking, weighing your food for the rest of your life, or anything like that. You’ll learn easy habits.
  • Empowerment. By the time you are done with us you won’t ever need to have a coach again. You’ll be able to master any habit, not just nutrition habits, and you’ll understand your own unique nutrition needs.
  • Each habit is tailored to your specific needs. Other habit based programs give everyone the same habit and it is up to you to do it. This doesn’t work for over half the people. With us the habit gets scaled to your level.
  • Support, not competitiveness. Often other coaches will assume that you being in a group is all the support that you need. It isn’t. We built our program to ensure that you get the support you need, every single day. It comes from your coach, and your peers. We encourage collaboration, not competition.
  • You learn to trust your body. To make success permanent we capitalize on your best resource, your body. We’ll teach you to know exactly how much to eat and when, without counting calories. You’ll learn to use your body signals appropriately to remove the guess work.
  • Hunger won’t be a problem. To make you as comfortable as possible we’ve researched a ton about hunger and satiety. Every part of our program reflects the latest research in appetite and satiety regulation; we’ve spared no detail because we want you to be as satisfied as possible.
  • Eat the foods you like. Unlike diets we don’t eliminate foods, or use restrictive rules. You literally can eat whatever you choose, we’ll never judge your choice. Instead we teach you how to be flexible and still succeed.
  • Motivation stays high. We’ve all started something full of motivation only to have it fizzle. There is science to motivation and our program maximizes it. Part of that is the high level of autonomy that you’ll have. We support and guide you, but you are the one in charge of your plan.
  • Right focus. We focus on behaviors, not on outcomes. Outcomes are great, we all want to achieve those goals, but the research shows us that focusing on them is less successful than focusing on the daily behaviors. Our program always focuses on the habits and the behaviors needed to stick to them. We’ll keep your efforts productive by funneling your energy into actions.
  • Right exercise. There are a ton of myths about exercise. How much, what type, etc.? While we don’t give individualized exercise plans (that would cost way too much), we guide you towards programs that work. It turns out that most people think they have to do way more than what they actually do, to lose weight

Our Summer Offer

Our one on one coaching program is currently $97 to sign up and $147 per month. We’re raising the monthly rate to work privately with a coach to $197 a month after this cohort. That means, in a twelve month period you would spend $2461.

For this summer, we’re making a special offer: you can join our June 22nd small group cohort, for only $97 a month, with no contract. That’s a savings of $1297 over private coaching at the upcoming price, over a year.

This year we’ve eliminated the competition for cash. Both the research and our experience tells us that it makes it harder, not easier to form new habits and make them stick. Don’t fall for transformation contests, it’s just marketing.

We will sell out, act first and ensure that you get your spot. Click the button below to get in.

Register

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Perfect Blueberry Muffins

I wanted to bake up something to go with breakfast to have instead of my whole wheat English muffins, and blueberries happen to be at their peak in the summer. So it was destiny.
blueberrymuffinperfectionIngredients

3 cups (375 g) flour (white, whole wheat or gluten free baking mix)
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup sugar or equivalent (I used half Splenda and half sugar)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup egg whites (or 2 eggs)
1/2 cup oil of your choice or melted butter (I used 1/4 cup of canola oil and 1/4 cup non-hydrogenated spread for the buttery flavor)
1 cup unsweetened almond milk or milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract (optional) *not lemon juice*
1 and 1/2 cups of fresh blueberries

1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Spray your muffin tin of choice with non-stick spray or line with muffin liners. Set aside. (you might need a ramekin too since this makes about 13 muffins. Baker’s dozen!)

2. In a large bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and cinnamon.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, oil, vanilla, and lemon extract. Fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix everything together by hand. Avoid overmixing. Gently mix until all the flour is off the bottom of the bowl and no big pockets of flour remain. The batter will be thick and somewhat lumpy. Fold in the blueberries.

4. Pour batter into prepared muffin tins, filling all the way to the top. Top with a sprinkle of coarse sugar, if preferred. Bake at 425F degrees for 5 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 and continue to bake for 14-15 minutes more until tops are lightly golden and a sharp knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 10 minutes in pan before enjoying.

Makes 13.
217 calories and 9 g fat apiece the way I made them. Your nutrition facts will vary if you sub ingredients. Don’t sweat it. Enjoy the muffins.

Notes: the muffins shown are made with 300 g gluten free flour blend and 75 g whole wheat flour because I was using up pantry odds and ends. If you make them with all whole wheat flour they will be darker in color.

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