Chef Katelyn Simply Sassafrastastic Spitfire at Syracuse U. Wed, 22 Aug 2012 15:04:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Kind of Addicted. Wed, 22 Aug 2012 15:04:09 +0000 Katelyn Block

Morning coffee is possibly the best thing in the world. Slightly acidic, a little bit sweet, and just a tad creamy. When I’m at home (being both thrifty and health-conscious), I use stevia and coconut milk. My all-time favorite coffee maker? My Bialetti.

It’s pretty, and was designed during the Great Depression in Italy. It was made both because Italians love coffee (espresso me now), and because it is so inexpensive to produce. No fancy parts — just the base, piece for the grounds, and the top. The water boils in the bottom and comes up through the filter. How handy?!

Both Kristin and I are obsessed.

With that being said, I love caffeine. I’ve noticed that since eating more protein and fat, I need less (or rely on it a lot less). This is a good thing.

Breakfast: Eggs!

With sea salt and hot sauce. I could eat eggs all day. I kind of do.

How do you have your morning coffee? (or tea!)
Simple eat-it-everyday breakfast? 

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We Made It! Wed, 22 Aug 2012 02:27:56 +0000 Katelyn Block

‘Ello, everyone! I am ALL MOVED IN and officially stressed. It’s stupid I know. The opposite of what I should be feeling. Stress is stupid. But, I’m in between getting into classes, figuring out what I’m going to eat for breakfast, missing my family (I know, I’m an “adult” now, but I still miss my parents), and trying to adjust to a new place.

Speaking of…..

Look at this AWESOME closet space! Wow. I don’t even have enough things to fill it up, which says a lot because my Mom tells me I pack like Imelda Marcos. If I spelled that wrong, feel free to correct me. It’s something I’ve been making progress on (or that’s what I like to tell myself, anyway).

I’ve been really happy with the apartment and everything it has. It’s no fifth-avenue high-rise (one day, maybe), but it has great closet space (heh), basic kitchen appliances, and a spacious upstairs and downstairs. Needless to say, I think it will feel like home in no time.

I’ve already broken in the pots and pans!

For dinner, I pan-seared some tilapia in coconut oil and then had it atop greens with pumpkin seeds. I drizzled everything in pumpkin seed oil (an UNREAL recent discovery — so nutty and delicious, I could put it on everything!), a few squeezes of lemon, and a crack of sea salt. On the side, I had iced tea, which was perfectly perfect and homemade! I found a Cold Brew box of tea bags from Lipton that are seriously perfect for those of us that are always on-the-go. I have a large jug with a tap, so all I had to do was fill it with water, steep the tea bags for three minutes, and then stick it in the fridge. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. Too awesome.

True story, I kind of sucked at CrossFit today. I woke up for a 5am WOD (mistake #1 –> not enough sleep), didn’t have enough coffee beforehand (it’s kind of my vice), and haven’t been stretching enough lately. I could really seriously use a massage. Or a yoga class. Or all of the above. I brought my yoga mat to Syracuse with me, so I’m determined to get some serious stretching in. Tight shoulders have been taking a huge toll on my overhead squats — I’m constantly wobbling, even at lower weights.

That was random. Still more unpacking to do, but it’s time for bed. Given that it’s the first night back, there’s lots of celebrating going on, but this girl has been up since 5am and needs some sleep. I think a bath and some hot tea sounds nice, don’t you?

What do you do after a long, productive day?
Best tips for adjusting to a new bungalow? (I like that word, even if I’m not using it correctly)
Yummiest salad ideas? This girl needs to eat more GREENS.

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Packing Progress + Over-the-Phone Experience Mon, 20 Aug 2012 18:24:29 +0000 Katelyn Block

Hey everyone! Currently taking a break from packing. The thing about packing is it’s so deceiving — you know you have so much to do, and then it seems like you make huge progress while you’re doing it, but then you take a break and realize your room still looks the same. Does that make any sense? All of this gives me a belly ache.

Packing Exhibit A. This is just my workout gear! (and my grand total of five pairs of shoes)

I had a good breakfast this morning, starting with a handful of blueberries, then scrambling up 3 whole eggs and 3 egg whites in coconut oil. Homemade iced Americano on the side with stevia and coconut milk. Almond butter to round it all out.

I used hot sauce today! I’m switching up the condiments. For so long I was scared of hot sauce because I was scared it would be too…. hot, but it was really good. Frank’s, you now belong in my sauce rotation. (I heard that they have a buffalo chicken sauce — looking into this ASAP)

So I have a little story for you today. This will be a break from all of the NYC // HLS recaps (there are only so many of those a girl can take). Today, I woke up and just felt generally groggy (after an 11 hour train ride, I’m generally feeling a bit mellow… and sad to be leaving home tomorrow). Breakfast helped perk me up, but coffee is doing a lot less for me lately. I think I’m lacking sleep. It’s all of these late nights that are stressing me out and keeping me up at night. I think too much. Okay this isn’t exactly a “nice break” because it’s tainted with sadness for leaving home for another year…. although I really am happy and excited to be going back to school and seeing all of my sisters (and roommate! hi Deanna!). Anyway, did my packing, watching CrossFitHQ YouTube videos all the while, and finally finding a new-to-me show on Hulu: Dating Rules From My Future Self (which is so, so cute and funny). I figured it would be nice to call a few of the Boxes in Syracuse, introduce myself, get to know the owners a bit, and learn something about their programming before I try out classes and make a decision.

The Boxes were all very friendly — excited, welcoming, happy to chat. One of the boxes, however, got really defensive and kind of angry when I asked about their programming. This really disappointed me because I was so excited to talk to this owner — I had heard great things. I’ll admit that I haven’t mastered the art of talking to people quite yet (still so young and there are so many different kinds of people that I meet), but I didn’t think that asking about their workouts was a rude thing to do. By the end of the call, I tried my best to be cheery and say thank you for your time, I can’t wait to try a workout with you guys, but I was really truly hurt by how the owner responded. Maybe I’m in an oversensitive place with lack of sleep, stress, and the impending move, but I don’t know. I’ve never had an experience before where an owner of a Box or gym was so unwelcoming. Hopefully when (and if) I go in to try a class there, the experience will be different.

Have you ever had a bad over-the-phone experience?
What did you have for breakfast today?

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{NYC Chelsea Dining}: I Like it Rare. Sun, 19 Aug 2012 23:48:48 +0000 Katelyn Block

Hey everyone! Currently at a train station layover. I got on this train at 11:55 and it arrives home at 11pm. I guess you could say that’s a long train ride. Anyway! I’m drinking some half-caff coffee with cream (yes, CREAM — better for slow release of caffeine and makes me happy) and stevia, while eating four hard-boiled eggs with a bit of salt.

Small yet satisfying. I have a whole load of Progenex, turkey jerky, almonds, and NoGii bars (from Thursday), so I think I’ll be good for the rest of the ride home. HA. I could really use a vegetable right now.

In New York I drank a lot of this:

Starbucks iced coffee with sugar-free mocha.

And drank even more of this:

Progenex, aka The Sauce.

Enough about travel food. Let’s talk about Rare.

When I was in New York on Thursday, we got hungry after working out with the champs. I mean, what could you really expect. Tina and I headed over to Theo’s to freshen up, and then met up with her, Jocelyn (who let me stay with her Thursday night, what a great friend<3), and Meredith for dinner at Rare, a bar and grill in NYC’s Chelsea neighborhood.

We loved the vibe and the decor. Look at those lamps!

We spent some time looking at the menu, debating between getting something fancy (the tempting option), or getting something less expensive (the reasonable option).

I went semi-reasonable and got the organic burger atop a side salad.

Cole slaw on the side. I’m usually not a huge cole slaw fan, but this wasn’t bad. I took Tina’s lead and put it atop the burger. YUM.

We all split a basket of fries, which came with three varieties: sweet potato, waffle (??), and truffle. We dominated the sweet potato and waffle fries. The truffles ended up kind of lonely.

Typical blogger in the background. We’re not sorry.

Look at these SAUCES!! I love sauces. Two ketchup boats (my favorite, clearly), homemade BBQ sauce, a maple dip, honey mustard (?), and something else that was a bit more smoky.

I left super stuffed, and couldn’t even finish my burger. I blame this on the fries. Darn fries.

What was the last meal you had that was….. rare? ;)
Favorite dipping sauces? I’m talking ketchup, BBQ, octopus ink….. whatever is your style, man.

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For Your Entertainment: The CK + Kelly O Show. Sun, 19 Aug 2012 16:39:29 +0000 Katelyn Block

I have so many awesome things to recap from this weekend (reuniting with friends old and new, eating delicious food, and generally getting even more excited about life), but until then, here are the first two installments of a VLOG series shot by yours truly and the Kelly O Show. There is more to come, so don’t fret people. Lots of excitement ahead.

How was your weekend?! Love and miss you guys, can’t wait to get all of the recaps and pictures up! DROOL. TIME.

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Healthy Living Summit gets Cupcake Wasted Sun, 19 Aug 2012 02:44:49 +0000 Katelyn Block

Hey everyone! The day of panel discussions, meetings, and general bouncing around at HLS has come to a close. Now comes the blogging and sleeping portion of the night. It’s about to get crazy. But first, let’s talk about Flour Bakery.

The hosts.

The group. You can tell we’re a fun bunch.

When we got to Flour, we realized how big our group was. I spy Holly, all the way out the door!

Everything looked so good, but I had to practice resistance.

I saw trail mix (with nuts and chocolate — hello), and got that instead.

They had sparkling water, so I got some of that and an apple as well.

Above, all together. Below, the specials.

All were impressive, none were had. I’m thinking some of these might be fun to healthify… ;)

What did you do this weekend?
What would you get at Flour?! 

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#ReebokNYC: Why Reebok Stole My Heart. Fri, 17 Aug 2012 14:25:24 +0000 Katelyn Block

I’m trying really hard to help all of you to feel like you were there, but contain myself and be articulate at the same time.

#BrandsILove? Let’s talk about Reebok.

Yesterday, I was on an eight-hour train ride, the whole time trying to distract myself with blogging, blog reading, tweeting, e-mail responding, and found myself at the last hour and a half of the ride with WOD killaaa music in my ears and straight up staring out the window, trying not to get emotional. I’m not a super emotional person, but I like to think that I work hard, and when all of that hard work pays off, I get overwhelmed. I get jittery, happy, and slightly teary. I tried really hard to avoid that last part. As we pulled into Penn Station, I could feel everything coming together; a dream of mine finally coming to fruition.

As I walked up to Reebok’s 5th Avenue CrossFit Fit Hub, I felt myself coming home.

The Reebok team welcomed us like family. It felt natural to walk into this big, beautiful, green-accented Box, with the promise of champions, small victories and big ones. To be honest, I kind of expected to sh*t myself when I saw the champions. You will all be happy to know that I didn’t. It felt natural. Strong, talented, humble athletes, who not only love CrossFit, but love bringing it to others, and helping them to love it too.

After we got our gear and changed, we went upstairs to the store, which is on the ground level, above the Box.

Uli Becker, President of Reebok International Ltd., delivered an opening speech that left me in chills.

I love working with brands that have passion for what they do and have purpose. Any company can go about its business and decide to make an athletic shoe. Any brand can decide it’s going to make a moisture-wicking tank top, stamp the company logo on it, and sell it in retail stores. Anyone can do that.

You know what’s rare? A company that builds itself around a principle, a movement, and around straight up love. Reebok has soul. Reebok recognized the CrossFit movement early on and latched on to the passion, beauty, and excitement that surrounds it. Reebok employees do CrossFit together. They test out products, and you want to know why their products are so stinkin’ amazing? Because they test out every product on themselves, elite athletes, and take their advice because they understand that it’s not just about making a minimalist shoe or something that will beat out X brand. It’s about testing over and over again, listening to real athletes and what they need, and working day and night to bring the Sport of Fitness to the world.

Reebok views fitness as play. CrossFit, as Chris Spealler, Rich Froning, and Annie Thorisdottir believe very strongly, is not about elite athletes. It’s not about the Games, and it’s not about shattering world records. It’s about the person who goes to the gym every day with the goal of getting off their diabetes medications, who will never do a workout as Rx’d, and will never walk into the Arena at the Games. It’s about the small victories. Getting your first pull-up, realizing that you can. Sweating your butt off so you can lift up your kid, throw around a ball, carry boxes when you move into your first house.

I have tears in my eyes right now and I’m sitting on a train next to this awesome New York City couple, and they probably think I’m so strange because I’m blasting house music blasting in my ears, typing up a storm with misty eyes. Reebok has earned itself a soft spot in my heart, and it’s going to stay there.

One of the many reasons I love blogging so much is because it has brought me here. Right here, right now, where I get to witness such beautiful things as the President of a company not telling us about how much money they make or the newest, greatest product they’ve developed, but sharing their love for play, for making the everyday extraordinary, celebrating the small victories and the big ones. Making my own victories each day, deciding I’m going to get my first pull-up, and doing it. Reebok has worked hard to be where it is, and they want to bring fitness, love, motivation, and excitement to each of you. To the world.

Everyone, the sport of fitness has arrived.

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TODAY’S THE DAY! Let’s Meet the Champs. Thu, 16 Aug 2012 10:56:45 +0000 Katelyn Block

Currently: On the train to New York and everyone around me is asleep but I kind of feel like doing burpees. I got approximately 2.5 hours of sleep last night and I’m totally cool with that because I came up with a game plan to get Rich and Annie to come to dinner with us FitFlu-awesomes and become best friends. It might be possible to bribe them with steak. We’ll see.

I also realized that being up so early in the morning is amazing for productivity. I answered two whole emails and watched three Jenna Marbles videos on YouTube. Have I ever mentioned that we went to the same high school? Just a few thousand times. School pride. Not ashamed.

I also decided to travel in style today. Because Reebok (the world’s most awesome fitness apparel // gear company in the world, and no they did not ask me to say that) will be supplying my gear for today’s workout with the champs INCLUDING shoes (I love shoes), I’m all dolled up in Sperry’s, thrift store J Crew (!!!) shorts (which I purchased for 4 whole dollars), and a raspberry shirt that just generally makes me happy. Therefore, I didn’t pack any other workout shoes because I knew whatever Reebok gives me would be the best. My feet will be walking on pillows.

Since I’ll be doing some serious bonding (Annie will teach me how to do a muscle-up, according to Jess), let’s have a look at the champs and how awesome they are. Up first, Annie Thorisdottir, because she’s Icelandic and it’s only right that ladies go first.

This woman is a beast in the most literal and serious sense. I watch her work out and I think to myself, this person could probably carry me from America to Beijing (across the ocean and everything) without getting tired. She’s also seriously cool. I love her philosophy about CrossFit, that it’s a lifestyle and it’s play. What’s the point of exercising if you want to hit your head against a wall the whole time? In Iceland, herself and the other athletes take the lifestyle as something that is fun and serves you in all areas of life, as it should be.

Stats: 253 lb. back squat, 205 lb. clean and jerk, 156 lb. snatch, 364 lb. deadlift, 2:37 Fran. She kinda beat me.

Next up, Rich Froning Jr. I like saying the “Jr.” at the end.

I watched a documentary that I randomly found on YouTube (what a fortunate accident that was), that went through a day in the life of Rich and his training buddy, Dan Bailey (who is equally as awesome and broke a world record at regionals — baller). What I liked most about the video was that Rich is just funny. Him and Dan banter back and forth and have small competitions with each other like teenage boys on the football team. Not to say that they act like teenagers, but at least they let out their childlike selves.

Plus, Rich is also a serious beast. He can just lift and lift and lift. And do walking handstands and lift and lift and lift. It’s never-ending and it’s awesome. Plus he’s so humble. One thing I admire in athletes is their humility. The money he won from the Games in 2011 he used to buy a house. I respect that a lot more than the guy who would buy a Lamborghini with the same money.

Stats: 70 pull-ups max (in a row. ONE WORD: respect.), 325 lb clean and jerk, 270 lb snatch, 525 lb deadlift (let’s talk about how that’s half a ton.), 425 lb. back squat, and 2:17 Fran. Again, the champs sorta beat me.

The coolest part about both of these athletes? Yes that they will be hanging with me today, that’s a given. But also that neither of them subscribe to any kind of “diet”. Both athletes eat whole, real foods, but neither of them are paleo, vegetarian, raw, or eat protein powder or nails for breakfast. They just eat real foods. They have both been champions two years in a row, which is proof (at least to me) that being strict in any diet isn’t necessarily the right path for everyone, but eating real, whole foods as close to nature as possible, is the way to go. If you’d like to argue with me, I would like to see you try and beat Rich Froning in any workout.

That’s what I thought.

Who are your favorite athletes and why?
Best (inexpensive!) healthy eats in Manhattan?
Are you an: Early bird or a late riser? 

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#FitVEDA VLOG! More Travel Snacks + “Um” Progress. Wed, 15 Aug 2012 19:22:28 +0000 Katelyn Block

VLOG for you today! I’m working on saying “um” less and I think it’s working. I loved all of your feedback on uncommon workout tools on my last post. If you’re looking for something new to try, scroll through the comments and you’ll find at LEAST ten new workout toys.

I had an awesome lunch today with Tracy from SugarCrafter, and pictures of that will be up later. For now, here’s a little vloggy vlog of me in a super-caffeinated state. Enjoy!

Tell Me: What do you look for in a travel snack? Protein, fat, limited sugar? What are your favorite brands?
Even Better: Share YOUR best tips for efficient packing! We’ll talk about that in the next post, and some of you might earn a shoutout. ;)

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Travel Snacks + An Uncommon Workout Tool Wed, 15 Aug 2012 03:15:59 +0000 Katelyn Block

Hi there! I haven’t done a “this is what I ate this is what I did today” post in awhile, so I figured I’d tell you about my day today. I’m warning you about the photo quality now. It’s not impressive.

I woke up and immediately knew I wanted coffee — not food, just coffee. So I took some of the chilled espresso I made from my fridge and mixed it with coconut milk in a mug, then microwaved! Just a small spoon of stevia in there and I was a happy gal. It was like a latte and I loved.

Halfway through the mug of coffee, I was ready for food and whipped up some eggs. We only had five left and my sister wanted one, so I figured I’d use the last four. I hate leaving an egg lonely!

With ketchup on top. I’m trying to cut down on my ketchup consumption and transition to other condiments. There isn’t a TON of sugar in ketchup, but it’s significant enough that I need to cut down. Insert: salsa and tomato sauce!

After the eggs, I was still a bit hungry, so I had some freshly ground almond butter (from Whole Foods in Maine!) with semi-sweet chocolate chips. So good, but another area in which I need to cut down on sugar. I’m considering making my own chocolate chips with 100% dark chocolate and stevia — I’ll let you know how that works out. ;)

Soon after breakfast, my friend Cory came over and helped me pack. I move back to Syracuse on Tuesday, after #ReebokNYC on Thursday and Boston all weekend for HLS. Move-in day is coming so quickly, and packing is becoming more and more daunting. We made some good progress, but I still have SO much to pack — and my stress // excitement level is reaching an all-time high. Any tips for the packing-stressed?!

After getting some packing (and Travel Channel-watching) done, I went to CrossFit in the middle of a torrential downpour and it was so worth it. Going to CrossFit always makes my day a thousand times better. It wakes me up, gives me a huge energy boost, and makes me a heck of a lot happier. There’s nothing that some high intensity sweating can’t solve, including packing stress.

Today’s WOD: 1 snatch, 4 over-head squats, and 40 double-unders. The Rx weight for women was 55 lbs, but I’m not that strong yet. I went with 35 lbs (which, looking back, was a little bit light) and subbed bar jumps for DU’s because I can’t do those yet. Which STILL drives me bananas. Just a reminder that I need more practice!

Post-WOD, I hit the gym (because I wasn’t feeling the burn — another sign that I should have gone heavier) and did some leg circuit weights, wall ball squats and sit-ups, kipping practice, and power-cleans with the Powerbags that my gym uses (above). I really liked using these! It was a lot of fun and they are deceptively heavy. They look so plush, don’t they?

I had a protein shake and then went out for some Travel Snack-hunting. Success!

Turkey Jerky (purchased because it had a much better price per ounce as well as protein content — knocked the beef + buffalo jerkys out of the water), Enjoy Life chocolate chips (mini is a good thing because then they spread out), and coconut butter. You know, the essentials. I’ll be carrying around the jerky with raw almonds and snacking 24/7 instead of spending tons of money on restaurants. Because traveling in general is so expensive (trains? hotels? food? AIR?), I’m trying to be more frugal with food and I have to say, I’m happy with my thriftiness.

Time for some chocolate relaxation….

And BED. Need to practice getting up early for my 5:30 am train on Thursday!

What are your favorite travel snacks?
Uncommon workout tools: What are your favorites? Sandbags, kettlebells, slam-balls?

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