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Couture Conditioning offers a custom fit, one on one and group, personalized fitness evaluation and training regimen. The intention of Couture Conditioning is to assist clients in the development of physical and mental well-being: a truly priceless health advantage.

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*Treat Yo Self* *Farmer’s Market* *Greek Yogurt in a Melon Bowl*

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Dear Friends,

It’s another beautiful spring day in California. I just finished my last longer run before my marathon, and next week will be a welcomed nice and easy taper. That is the great thing about putting forth serious effort for whatever your passion is, there’s a time to really work hard, and then, just as important, a time to rest a little and treat yourself! When people ask me what is more important diet or exercise, I always say both. But for me, I find that exercise makes me feel energized and stronger, and good food choices often naturally follow. Post-workout, a Krispy Creme donut sounds extremely unappetizing. As we take care of ourselves, and more often than not, fill our bodies with clean food, the “treats” complement our hard work choices. Real food tastes better and feels better. Of course, it’s wonderful to enjoy a rich dessert or a champagne toast on occasion too. Enjoy and live life to its fullest happy and healthy! One of our favorite TV shows is Parks and Recreation, and one of our favorite episodes is “Treat Yo Self.” When my daughter Aimee and I indulged with a spa massage last week, we laughed that it was a “treat yo self” afternoon. Just for fun, here’s the clip from the episode: http://youtu.be/OP3xf6BFEIo

Another way of treating yourself is enjoying all the fresh farm food that is so abundant and available to us now. There are more options than ever to find amazing great food. If you are joining me for my April 5-Day Clean Eating Challenge this Monday, you might want to stop by a local farmer’s market to stock up. The Los Gatos Weekly Farmers Market is held every Sunday rain or shine, 8AM – 1PM, located at The Los Gatos Town Plaza Park.

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LG Boot Camp meets every day this week. Monday through Friday at 9AM and MWF at 6AM. Rachel will be teaching our 6AM class this week!

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Here’s another great opportunity to treat yourself. Cathy Raice is having her awesome SAMPLE SALE on April 24th, 11:00AM to 1:00PM. This is a perfect opportunity to stock up on great gifts for friends or yourself. There will be high-end candles, lotions, books, jewelry and more. The address is 17100 Los Robles Way, LG

Food for Thought:

Greek Yogurt Melon Bowl

A treat yourself healthy breakfast or dessert.

Greek Yogurt in a Melon Bowl (Popsugar Fitness)
Greek yogurt is one of the best ways to enjoy plenty of protein without any eggs or meat. Instead of topping off your morning bowl of yogurt with sugary granola, serve it up in a fresh cantaloupe bowl that kicks out carbs. Be sure to add your favorite fresh berries to the mix for extra color and flavor.
Total Calories: 146

Much love,

Lori

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*Louie Bonpua* *I.M.P.A.C.T.* *California Sand Dabs*

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Dear Friends,

This weekend my Team in Training team had their last long training run for the season along the coast in Monterey. It was a spectacular day, perfect weather and the Pacific Ocean displayed the most beautiful hues of deep blue. We even spotted a few whales. This was 20 miles of awe and natures best. Traditionally, the head coach sends off the runner’s with words of inspiration and encouragement, along with important directions on which way to run and where to turn. :) Today we were reminded of the impact and legacy of a man named Louie Bonpua, who while battling Leukemia trained with Team in Training and touched the hearts of so many of us. I remember reading his story, and during my run I thought about those special people in my life who have left a legacy and continue to have impact on me. Here is a short video that is a tribute to Louie. It is only 5 minutes long, but it will stick with you for a long time.

One of my mentors, Todd Durkin, shared his definition of IMPACT with me last fall. This is the ONE WORD he lives by every single day. I aspire to do the same!

I.M.P.A.C.T.

I – Live Inspired (Surround yourself with people that empower you, listen/read inspirational material)

M – Master your Craft (1% better every day)

P – Play at World Class (Get your mind right! Set goals daily, monthly, quarterly, and for life!)

A – Action (It’s the gas in the tank that makes the car go. Ready…FIRE…Aim!)

C – Condition for Greatness (Commitment to daily improvement of mind, body, and spirit)

T – Be Tenacious (Energy, passion, and positive attitude at all times)

Here’s to all of us creating IMPACT for ourselves and others!!

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Spring Break! This week is Spring Break and YES, there will be LG Boot Camp Monday thru Friday! MWF @ 6AM & 9AM and T/TH @ 9AM. The following week, April 14th I have a few spots left for my 5 Day Clean Eating program. Message me if you’d like to join us!

Food for Thought:
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Today I tried Sand Dabs for the first time. They were delicious! Although I rarely fry foods, I was curious on how to prepare a Sand Dab and their nutritional value. It was a post run treat. :) California Sand Dabs

Ingredients:

Servings: 4-6

2 lbs sand dabs flounder, cleaned (flounder)

1 egg, beaten

1 -2 cup panko breadcrumbs or 1 -2 cup dried breadcrumbs

salt & pepper

butter (for frying)

lemon wedge

Directions:

1. Dip the sand dabs into the beaten egg;season with salt & pepper, roll in panko or bread crumbs.

2. Heat a large skillet, add butter and fry until golden brown and crisp.

3. Serve with lemon wedges.

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Much love,

Lori

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*Climbing the Ladder* *Lose 10 With a Friend* *Sweet Potato Bruschetta*

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Dear Friends,

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve written. I’ve missed my Sunday morning time to sit down and write. Spring is here in full bloom and I’m loving it!
Growing up in LA, one of my hero’s was John Wooden. March madness reminds me of how much I enjoyed watching UCLA basketball back in the day. My uncle Leo even took me to a few games. I always wore a pair of high top converse sneakers, I fit right in! :)

John Wooden wrote a lot about setting and achieving goals, and one of the reasons I sign up for races, is so that I have a goal looming in front of me. I’m most successful when I create small habits to reach that goal. In fact, I believe that daily habits are more important than the goal itself. If you enjoy books on personal development and achieving goals by what you do everyday, I highly recommend The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy.

“High performance & production are achieved only through the identification and perfection of small but relevant details— little things done well. … … … little things make big things happen. .. … .. In fact… There are no big things, only a logical accumulation of little things done at a very high standard of performance. .. Each “trivial” and often troublesome detail will bring you closer to your goal. If you collect enough pennies you’ll eventually be rich. Each relevant and perfected detail is another penny in our bank.” -John Wooden

One of my fit pro friends recently shared the above and reminded me to celebrate and find satisfaction in our daily life. It’s the little parts that make up the big WIN. It’s a process as we master all the parts that lead us to our ultimate goals!

My goal for Couture Conditioning is to provide you with every tool I can to help you with your fitness and nutritional goals!

1. We’ve added a new Tuesday/Thursday 9AM Boot Camp!

2. MWF is still offered at 6AM & 9AM.

3. My on-line coaching program is a blast!! This is what I’ve been looking for to help friends jumpstart their fitness or reset back to healthy eating and exercise. I’ll be inviting you to join my new 5-Day Program in April and I will also be offering a Lose 10 With a Friend, a 10-Day program in May, in time for the Memorial Day holiday!

Have a wonderful Sunday!!

Food for Thought:

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Sweet Potato Bruschetta

By Rebecca Weller

Yield: 2-4 servings

1 large sweet potato, scrubbed and cut into 1-inch thick ‘coins’ (unpeeled)

2 tablespoons coconut or olive oil

½ red onion, peeled and chopped

½ cup cherry tomatoes, quartered

½ avocado, peeled and chopped

a few sprigs of fresh basil leaves
a drizzle of balsamic glaze

1. Preheat oven to 230C/450F (or a little higher if oven is not fan-forced).

2. Grease a baking tray with oil and rub the potato coins in the oil, being sure to coat both sides.

3. Lay coins flat on the tray in a single layer and season with sea salt and cracked black pepper.

4. Roast potato coins, undisturbed, for 15 to 20 minutes. Carefully flip coins over – the undersides should be dark golden brown. If they’re not, let them roast a little longer.

5. Return to the oven and allow to roast for another 10 minutes or so – until the tops match the undersides.

6. Meanwhile, combine onion, tomatoes and avocado in a bowl. When the potatoes are done, remove from oven and place onto serving plates

7. Top each coin with bruschetta salad mix and garnish with fresh basil leaves. Drizzle with balsamic glaze, serve, and enjoy!

Much Love,

Lori

408-455-2570

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*Santa Cruz waves* *Nature’s Gym* *Stuffed Peppers Santa Cruz Style*

286e83aebdad8104f1674fc998b640ffDear Friends,

It’s a fun race weekend for many of you! Best of luck to my friends participating in the 408K and Napa Marathon on Sunday! For some of you, this is your first race, for others, you’ve lost count. I’m excited for you all! One of my good friends who is running the 408K posted a beautiful video today of the Santa Cruz coastline. How fortunate you are if you live this close to one of the most beautiful places in the world!

http://www.santacruzwaves.com/videos/birds-eye-view-of-santa-cruz-2/

Today I worked out indoors, but I prefer to exercise outdoors. That’s why I love teaching boot camp and coaching runners. Whether it’s indoors or outdoors, I hope you had a chance to do something for yourself today.

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Couture Conditioning has a fun, busy month ahead! Monday is the first week of our new 4-week LG Boot Camp. Join us Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 6AM or 9AM at the Los Gatos Lodge for a full-body core-building workout! I have received interest in starting a Tuesday / Thursday women only boot camp at 9AM. If that is an opportunity that would interest you, please let me know!

I also still have 30 or 60 minute lunch time availability for any private or semi-private sessions, on Monday’s, Wednesday and Thursdays.

Last, but not least, I’m really excited about our upcoming on line coaching challenge! The 4-Day Focus begins the day after St. Patrick’s Day, March 18th. You can participate from anywhere. Whether you’re a local client, a friend back home or anywhere in-between. You are invited! The deadline to sign up is March 3rd.

What’s for Dinner?

Stuffed Peppers Santa Cruz Style

Modified from Recipes From A Kitchen Garden by Renee Shepherd & Fran Raboff

Makes 4 Servings

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups chicken stock, divided

1 cup brown rice

4 large yellow and/or red bell peppers

2 Italian turkey sausages, casings removed

1 onion, chopped

2 to 3 heaping tablespoons chopped sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil

1 small can of mild green chile

1/2 teaspoon celery seed

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 cup cilantro

salt and pepper to taste

Parmesan cheese

Directions:

1. Bring 2 cups of the chicken stock to a boil and add the rice. Reduce heat to simmer, cover, and cook for 50 minutes or according to the package.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

3. Cut off the tops of the bell peppers and remove core and seeds. Reserve the tops with the stems removed for later in the recipe. Cook in boiling salted water for 3 minutes to blanch. Remove from water and turn upside-down to drain.

4. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, break up the sausage into small pieces. Saute until lightly browned. Remove sausage and set aside.

5. Dice the remaining reserved pepper tops. Add the diced pepper, sun-dried tomatoes, and onions to the skillet and sauté until the onion is translucent. Stir n rice, sausage, chile, celery seed, lemon juice, cilantro, and reserved 1/2 chicken stock. Cook until thoroughly heated and liquid is absorbed. Add salt and pepper to taste.

6. Stuff peppers with rice mixture. Arrange them side by side in a baking dish. Sprinkle tops with Parmesan cheese. Pour 1/2 cup boiling water around the peppers. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes.

Much love,

Lori

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*Duct Tape Surfing* *Sugar vs. Fat* *Vegetable and Chickpea Curry*

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Dear Friends,

I always love a story that inspires or reminds me to never stop dreaming or moving forward. I love the smile on Pascale’s face and the attitude of the young friend that helps to make her dream come true. We all need a little help from our friends! :)

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I hope everyone had an enjoyable winter break! This week is our 4th week of LG boot camp. I’ll be teaching the 6AM class on Friday this week, probably indoors. I have some challenging new core exercises for us! It’s a busy time of year. Excited how many clients and friends are signed up for spring races and events. I love all your updates and posts, and it’s been fun to create training calendars and help with your preparation!

A few weeks ago, I came across an interesting article on the nutritional debate of ‘Fat vs Sugar’. I thought you might find it interesting too. Another confirmation to avoid processed foods!!

Twins Set out To Answer the ‘Fat vs Sugar’ Debate and Surprise Even Themselves – Posted by Rachael Wright

Diet books claim to have the answer. The answer to that ever elusive question of whether its really fat or sugar that’s the downfall of many diets and the reason for weight gain. For years the world was convinced that it was fat and soon we saw the rollout of thousands of low-fat versions of food. Then there’s the sugar/carb debate. Its grounded on the belief that cutting out carbs makes it almost impossible to gain weight and levels out the insulin in your body.

Never has there been a straight forward answer to this question. Until now. Alexander and Chris Van Tulleken are twins and are also doctors. When Alexander moved to the US his diet changed and his life became more sedentary and eventually ended up in increased weight gain. Alexander and Chris realized that their medical education did nothing to settle the debate over which foods were really bad for you and which resulted in weight gain.
With the help of a nutritionist they were both put on diets for a month. Alex went on a NO carb diet which meant only meat, eggs, cheese, and fish. No sugar and no fruits or vegetables. Chris was only allowed the barest amount of fat. Alex became increasingly sluggish and felt his alertness drop considerably though he was never really hungry. Chris was always hungry and was constantly snacking and felt as though all pleasure had gone out of eating.

In the end Alex’s no carb diet did end up with the highest amount of weight loss but it came at a cost. Since his body wasn’t getting the proper fuel it began to break down muscle tissue to use as supplement energy. The results of the twins study were rather shocking. Neither fat or sugar are addictive on their own. Instead it is the combination. Research has shown that foods with a combination of fat and sugar (milk chocolate and ice cream for instance) have the same effect on your brain as cocaine.
Sugar alone isn’t very addictive – only horses snack on sugar cubes and very few people gorge on boiled sweets or dry toast. And fat isn’t really addictive either: when did you last sneak a spoonful of butter from the fridge late at night? The modern processed food industry knows this and that’s why you’re rarely sold the two separately – what is addictive is the combination.

In the end if you want to lose weight in the safest way possible it’ll be much easier to simply cut out processed foods with high levels of fat and sugar. Those foods affect the brain differently and it becomes much harder to resist eating too much. Find healthy alternatives to ice cream like a banana with vanilla yogurt and cocoa powder
The secret to success is finding a diet that is sustainable longterm – a lifestyle.

The forecast says rain this week! I thought a healthy crock pot recipe sounded good!

Vegetable and Chickpea Curry
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Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 1/2 cups chopped onion

1 cup (1/4-inch-thick) slices carrot

1 tablespoon curry powder

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 serrano chile, seeded and minced

3 cups cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans)

1 1/2 cups cubed peeled baking potato *A even healthier option is to omit the potatoes and served it over basmati brown rice.

1 cup diced green bell pepper

1 cup (1-inch) cut green beans

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained

1 (14-ounce) can vegetable broth

3 cups fresh baby spinach

1 cup light coconut milk

6 lemon wedges

Preparation

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and carrot; cover and cook 5 minutes or until tender. Add curry powder, sugar, ginger, garlic, and chile; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.
Place onion mixture in a 5-quart electric slow cooker. Stir in chickpeas and next 8 ingredients (through broth). Cover and cook on HIGH 6 hours or until vegetables are tender. Add spinach and coconut milk; stir until spinach wilts. Serve with lemon wedges.

Much Love,

Lori

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*Interval Training Explained* *New LG Boot Camp Dates* *Cod Fillets with Vegetables*

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Dear Friends,

What a great morning, waking up to rain. I just heard it’s snowing in the Santa Cruz mountains! Happy Super Bowl Sunday and Groundhog Day! I won’t predict the winner (I’m obviously not very good at that), and if it means our much more needed rain, bring on the six more weeks of winter. Some of my favorite workouts have been in the pouring rain.

I am super pumped for the 5-Day Fat Flush Challenge and our upcoming challenge is filled to capacity! Claire and I have been talking and making preparations every day, and it’s been a blast. We are looking forward to providing fun and future challenges!

LG Boot Camp starts our next session on Monday! The last 4-Week session flew buy. In consideration of our local schools’ Winter Break, I am offering an option for a 3-Week session. Thank you for your feedback. We WILL have boot camp during the February Winter Break!

Dates: February 3rd – February 28th
$180 for 4-weeks or $135 for 3-weeks
MWF 6AM & 9AM
Los Gatos Lodge (coverage or inside if it’s pouring)


I talk a lot about the benefit of interval training during sessions. One of my friends sent me an excellent graphic that says it all! I love when you send me what you are learning or share anything about your fitness journey.

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Dinner This Week:

Cod Fillets with Vegetables – Eating Well
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INGREDIENTS:

For 4 people:

4 pieces of cod, the back is the best

3 leeks Mace flower

1 carrot

Germinated leek seeds (those found in some Asian grocery stores, Metro, and organic grocery stores…)

Salt and pepper

Referred to as the “flower of nutmeg,” mace is the lacy covering of the nutmeg seed, and has a more aromatic and bitter flavor than nutmeg. They are ideal to complement the meat dishes and fish with a twist .

COOKING INSTRUCTION:

Wash the leeks thoroughly and slice into rings, fry in a pan with a little olive oil, add some mace flower and cook covered. Season according to your taste. Cut the carrot in half and steam cook for a few minutes, you can also just put them on top of leeks in the pan. Then cut them into thin strips. Cook the cod fillet blocks on two sides in the pan with a dash of olive oil and season. You can steam it if you prefer. Plate the dish. Arrange the leeks on the plate. Put a few strips of carrot to give color and place a piece of cod on the vegetables. Top with leek sprouts. A dash of reduced balsamic vinegar gives the final touch to this dish. Tip The reduced balsamic vinegar is obtained by leaving balsamic vinegar on low heat for a long time until getting syrupy.

Much love,

Lori

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*Beyond the Lodge* *5-Day Fat Flush* *Almond Protein Pancakes*

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Dear Friends,

I can relate to Buzz Light Year! :) When I get excited about something, or really believe in it, I want everyone else to experience it too. No doubt, I love to run. For the last 14 years, I’ve LOVED to run marathons, one or two a year. I have a passion for my profession because I want to share that feeling and I want other’s to feel that joy. But, I am not trying to talk everyone into being a runner (I promise). I do want to inspire and motivate you to live life to its fullest and find that balance of health, fitness and nutrition that feeds your mind and body, and helps you feel GREAT every day.

Beyond the Lodge…For the last several months I have been researching how I can inspire others that don’t necessarily live close by, that may not have the time to meet with me personally, or to go above and beyond for my existing clients. I wanted to provide the very best in fitness and nutrition, and I have carefully researched several opportunities, programs and supplements. I am 100% confident I have found the holy grail. As a way to begin my new and broader coaching, I am offering an online challenge. The 5-Day Fat Flush Challenge! I’m excited that I will be offering this along with an incredible fitness coach that I became friends with during the mentorship I attended last fall. Her name is Claire Cleary and she owns Achieve Fitness in New Jersey.

I have selected a health food shake called Shakeology that is loaded with 70+ vitamins, minerals, probiotics, antioxidants and digestive enzymes (all the stuff you need and don’t usually get!). The bonus? It doesn’t have any of the “junk” – no dyes, no artificial sweeteners, no caffeine, even gluten free. My 5-day challenge will include the shakes, a clean food plan, fitness tips and tons of peer support!

Are you ready to flush your body’s system, lose fat, and keep it off? If you want to start on a program that gets results and has SUSTAINABILITY this is what you want to do.

You can’t lose weight and keep it off by going on a 5-Day starvation diet or without learning valuable fitness techniques and healthy habits. Eating healthy, Exercising and Practicing Healthy Habits must become part of your dedication to a lifestyle change – if you want permanent results!

Feel free to invite anyone in your life who you would like to do this with. You’ll get even better results if someone you see everyday is on board with you.

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This fast and furious booster program is designed to:

* Kick-start the loss of fat from your body.

* Provide a new belief in your ability to get on track.

* Begin the transformation of your weight and health.

Program Includes:

5-DAY clean eating plan
(lean protein, vegan options)

5 SERVINGS of SHAKEOLOGY
(dense nutrition)

Online Coaching

Fitness Homework

Starts: Monday, February 10th

Ends: Friday, February 14th (You will look and feel amazing for Valentine’s Day)

Registration Closes: February 2nd

To Register:

Call: (408) 455-2570
Email: lori@coutureconditioning.com
Message: Facebook.com/CoutureConditioning

$35 Dollars + shipping (if you would like me to mail you the shakes)

A little humor:
Shakeology Ingredients: Tony Horton Checks Out Shakeology

Almond Protein Pancakes With Banana Cream Sauce

These were delicious! I made them today after my 13.5 mile run with my Boston buddy Melinda W. She makes running so much fun. If you ever do decide to do a marathon, join her for a run!! :)

Ingredients

For pancakes:
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3 ounces vanilla protein powder (I used Garden of Life Raw)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup vanilla soy milk (or almond milk)
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/4 cup sliced almonds
Cooking spray for pan
For the sauce:
1 banana
6 ounces nonfat vanilla Greek yogurt
For the topping:
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1 banana
Directions

In a bowl, mix the whole wheat flour, protein powder, baking powder, salt, egg, maple syrup, and almond extract.
Stir in the soy milk and oil. Mix in the sliced almonds.
Place a skillet or griddle on medium heat. After spraying the pan, pour batter into circles (using about 1/4 cup of batter).
Once the pancakes begin to bubble, flip them, and cook for another minute or so on the other side until golden brown.
To make the cream sauce, mash the banana in a small bowl, and stir in the Greek yogurt.
Serve three pancakes with a healthy scoop of the banana cream sauce, and sprinkle with sliced almonds.

Much love,
Lori

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*Moving Forward* *The Purpose of a Dog* *Olive Oil Granola*

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Dear Friends,

Although we are all hoping for rain, it’s a weekend in January that couldn’t be more beautiful! I hope you are enjoying your holiday weekend. I don’t always watch football, but my money is on the 49′ers and Patriots.

There were scores of people out on the trail yesterday. I know many were running for Meg Menzies, a Hanover mother of three who was killed last Monday, struck by a drunk driver, when she went out for her morning run last week. I am always inspired and touched by the way we bond as a community across the nation when tragedy strikes.

Last week we said goodbye to our sweet dog Skylar. I sure missed him this week, but grateful for the over 15 great years we had with him. My uncle shared the perfect sentiment, The Purpose of a Dog. A timely reminder; if a dog was our teacher we would learn things like:

• When loved ones come home, always run to greet them;

• Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride;

• Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure DELIGHT.

• Take naps;

• Stretch before rising;

• Run, romp, and play daily;

• Thrive on attention and let people touch you;

• Avoid biting when a simple growl will do;

• On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass;

• On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree;

• When you’re happy, dance around and wag your entire body;

• Delight in the simple joy of a long walk;

• Be loyal;

• Never pretend to be something you’re not;

• If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it;

• When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by, and nuzzle them gently;

Monday is a holiday, and a perfect day to get in a workout too.
We will have LG Boot Camp at 6AM and 9AM and all private sessions are on!
Whatever you do to keep moving forward tomorrow, be aware of your surroundings and be safe out there!


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What’s for Dessert:


One of my favorite desserts is plain Greek yogurt with berries, a sprinkle of granola and a drizzle of honey.
Store bought granola isn’t our best choice and generally very high in fat, sugar and calories.
Here is an easy recipe for a healthier homemade granola.

Olive oil granola

By York Avenue

Olive Oil Granola (adapted slightly from Melissa Clark)

3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

3/4 cup walnuts, chopped (I’ve also subbed in pecans)

3/4 almonds, chopped

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/2 cup pumpkin seeds

1 cup unsweetened coconut chips

1/3 cup ground flax seeds (I’ve also used wheat germ)

1/2 cup olive oil

3/4 cup maple syrup (you can cut this down to 1/2 cup to make it less sweet)

1/3 cup brown sugar (I’ve cut this down to 2 tablespoons to de-sweeten)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom (this has a very strong flavor so make sure you know you like it! Otherwise you can sub in ground nutmeg, ground ginger, or just double the cinnamon)

Mix all the ingredients together in a big bowl. Spread evenly on a parchment-covered rimmed baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 45 minutes, stirring every ten minutes or so.

Much love,

Lori

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*LG Boot Camp new format* *Weekly Challenges* *Spicy Kale Chips*

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Dear Friends,

Happy New Year! After a wonderful and fun filled month, it’s good to back. I am grateful for so much and anticipate the best year ever in 2014. I look forward to writing to you weekly, sharing fitness tips and recipes.

What’s new in 2014? Here are just a few of the Couture Conditioning opportunities I am excited about!

1. LG Boot Camp begins tomorrow with a new format. Sessions will run continuously every 4-weeks (with an occasional 2-week session). We will no longer have the week breaks in-between sessions. Thank you for your feedback on this. Hope to see you MWF @ 6AM & 9AM at the Los Gatos Lodge. www.lgbootcamp.com

2. For current private and boot camp clients I will be adding you to a private email group. If you prefer Facebook, I can create a FB group as well. Let me know which you prefer. For the entire year I will share the following every week:

Monday’s: A Weekly Challenge
Tuesday’s: Inspiration
Wednesday’s: A New Recipe
Friday’s: Weekend Warrior Workout

3. Goal setting strategies. As a group, I want to encourage and support goal setting. Our first group event will be the Go Green Saint Patrick’s Day race in Vasona Park on Sunday, March 16th. It’s a perfect event for all levels of walkers and runners. Distance options are 5K, 10K and Half Marathon. I will provide you with a free personalized training calendar and support. Additional details to follow!

Food for Thought:

Spicy, Crispy Kale Chips

Eat Kale! Erin loves kale, so while she was home I made sure we always had plenty in the fridge. My goal this week is to eat kale everyday like she does!
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*New Campbell Location* *Exercise And Mindfulness Reduce Colds* *Diary Free Egg Nog*

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Dear Friends,

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

December is half over! We all feel like we aren’t going to get done all that needs to get done. But, it does get done. So I remind myself to enjoy and to savor this special time. This is an extra special Christmas for our family and we are cherishing good health and healing. Wishing you all love, health and happiness!!!

December 16th – 20th is our last week of LG Boot Camp before our two-week break. I am so impressed with our 6AM super stars. Freezing conditions, and even with the option to workout indoors, you stayed out and showed us true dedication and strength! Congratulations to Shen B. and several friends who completed the California International Marathon last Sunday!! The temperature at the start of the 26.2 was not quite 28 degrees and the finish was a brisk 35 degrees!

The next LG Boot Camp session begins January 6th. Ali and her family will be enjoying a Disney cruise, and I look forward to seeing my amazing 6AM group every day. I’ll also be sharing new fitness challenges and help with nutrition and weight loss.

Today I had an appointment with my chiropractor and run coach Dr. John Martin. I see him occasionally for minor running injuries, and completed his comprehensive nutritional and blood testing last year. The Science Based Nutrition report is the most comprehensive analysis available. Below are some of the key features that set it apart from others:

Individualized supplement recommendations & dosages specific to test findings, age, sex, & weight of the patient

Correlation of drug side effects with patient test finding

Dietary recommendations with meal recipes

Compare color-coded current and previous test results on the same page
Incorporates multiple factors for each condition or diagnosis including the patients symptoms, medications, blood tests, hair tests, chelation and urine tests

I had some minor neck and back aches so I went in for my first chiropractic adjustment this afternoon. It was GREAT, and I really wish I hadn’t waited so long to see him! I refer clients to Dr. Martin all the time. He recently moved his office to a NEW location and I wanted to let you know:

Sport & Family Clinic

John A. Martin D.C.

125 E. Sunnyoaks Ave. Suite 213

Campbell

(408) 249-7767

Mind-Body-Spirit News:

The best way to prevent spreading colds and flu’s is to wash your hands with soap and water. Antibacterial gel and hand sanitizer’s will not protect you from viruses. This is an interesting article on the benefits of exercise and meditation. If I don’t have a fever, I will still work out and it always makes me feel better. For me, prayer is my meditation.
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Exercise And Mindfulness Reduce Colds

by Shirley Archer, JD, MA

In addition to getting a flu shot, you may want to exercise or meditate consistently to help protect yourself against winter colds and flus. New research shows that simple preventive measures like engaging in daily physical activity or mindfulness meditation may be almost as effective as a flu vaccine for lowering the odds of succumbing to an acute respiratory infection.

“The results are remarkable,” said lead study author Bruce Barrett, MD, PhD, an associate professor of family medicine at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “We saw a 40 to 50 percent reduction in respiratory infections. When we give flu vaccines, which is one of the most well-proven and beneficial interventions that we have, it only protects at a level of 50 to 60 percent and only for a few strains of the [flu] virus,” said Barrett. Aside from research on hand washing, this is the first study to prove that a prevention strategy can be successful in reducing acute respiratory infections.

Researchers randomly divided 154 subjects among three groups—exercise, meditation and control—for 8 weeks during the winter cold and flu season; 149 completed the study. The exercise group met once a week for a 2½-hour indoor group session in which they received instruction on being physically active, worked out on equipment and were guided on how to do moderate-intensity exercise such as walking or jogging for 45 minutes a day. Meditation group members followed the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn. They met once weekly for a 2½-hour group meeting that included instruction and discussion on mindfulness with practical examples such as walking, yoga and breathing exercises; they were also guided on how to practice mindfulness meditation at home for 45 minutes a day. Investigators instructed control group subjects not to make any lifestyle changes. Data on respiratory infections (numbers, duration and severity), absences from work, and other health markers were collected from all subjects.

Data analysis showed that people in both the exercise and meditation groups had significantly fewer bouts of acute respiratory infection than those in the control group. Exercisers had fewer episodes of illness, but the infections experienced by meditation subjects were less severe and didn’t last as long. Researchers don’t yet fully know the reasons for the differences, but the findings are highly encouraging.
Barrett told IDEA Fitness Journal, “We already know that exercise is very important and that meditation may reduce stress. This study adds further evidence that taking care of oneself matters.”
The findings appeared in the Annals of Family Medicine (2012; 10 [4], 337–46). To read the report online, go to www.annfammed.org/content/10/4/337.long.

Holiday Spirits:

Diary Free Egg-Nog (courtesy of Lemon Strips)

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Ingredients:

- 6 egg yolks

- 1/2 cup sugar

- 1 1/2 cups almond milk (or other dairy-free milk)

- 1 stick whole cinnamon

- 20 ounces coconut milk

- 2 tspns pure vanilla extract

- 1/2 tspn ground nutmeg

- 1/4 tspn ground cinnamon

- 6 to 8 tblspns rum/brandy (optional)

Directions:
- In a medium bowl, combine the egg yolks and sugar.

- Whisk briskly until thickened. Set the bowl aside.

- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, slowly heat the almond milk with the cinnamon stick, stirring frequently, until the cinnamon becomes fragrant and the milk has been reduced by about one-third.

- Remove the saucepan from the heat, and discard the cinnamon stick.

- Pour the reduced milk it very slowly into the egg yolk and sugar mixture, whisking constantly.

- Return the mixture to the saucepan, and stir in the coconut milk.

- Return the saucepan to the stovetop, and simmer over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture begins to bubble a bit (don’t let it break into a full rolling boil, or it will curdle) and starts to thicken.

- Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the vanilla, nutmeg, and ground cinnamon.

- Stir in the optional rum.

- Chill completely in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Thank you so much for being in my life in 2013. I look forward to our friendship in 2014!!

Much love and gratitude,

Lori

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