Coaching by G

Diet Tips from a Personal Trainer

As summer approaches and bathing suit season looms large, inquiring minds what to know: what are some great diet tips from a personal trainer?

The best diet tip: nutrition is really a conversation about how you can harness the power of your own biochemistry given your immediate goals.  If your goal is sport performance, your nutrition strategy will be wildly different than it will be if your goal is fat loss, weight loss, healing from chemotherapy, healing from illness or injury, or something else…you get the idea. Each individual and his or her goal determines what diet is best. I know this is totally NOT the answer anyone wants to hear, right?  We all would love to know “the diet tip from a personal trainer” that will allow us to look great, feel great, perform better, have a great microbiome, have thick shiny hair and smooth skin, etc. As a personal trainer and coach, I can tell you first hand that “the diet” that works for everyone in every situation is the diet that you will stick to and that you choose with your coach.   continue reading »

Recipe of the Month: Italian Wedding Soup

Italian Wedding Soup

This soup is packed with protein and fresh vegetables. You can use whatever greens you have on hand or add frozen veggies too. You can also easily half the soup recipe and then freeze half the meatballs for a quick dinner another night.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Soup
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients

FOR THE MEATBALLS:

  • 1 1/2 lb. pastured grass-fed ground beef
  • 1/2 lb. ground pork or all ground beef
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp. parsley freshly chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 1/3 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan or Romano cheese finely grated
  • 2/3 cup milk or water

FOR THE SOUP:

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes optional
  • 1 1/4 cup diced yellow onion about 3/4 -1 onion
  • 1 1/4 cup diced celery 4-5 stalks
  • 1 1/2 cup diced carrots 3 large carrots
  • 4 cloves garlic finely chopped or minced
  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice about half a lemon
  • 5 cups dark leafy greens escarole, spinach, swiss chard, or kale chopped coarsely
  • sea salt to taste
  • black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup freshly chopped parsley
  • 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • grated/finely shredded parmesan for serving

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a bowl, combine all of the 'for the meatballs' ingredients. Using your hands, gently combine.
  • With a melon baller or a teaspoon, drop ~1 - 1 1/4 inch balls onto two parchment paper lined baking sheets. Using your hands, go back through and roll the meatballs into round circles, they don't have to be perfect.
  • Place in oven and bake for 30 minutes (swap placement of trays halfway through), or until cooked through and lightly browned. Set aside until soup is ready.
  • While the meatballs bake, heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a dutch oven or large soup pot.
  • Add the onions, celery, carrots, red pepper flakes, and garlic. Season with a little salt and pepper, and sauté until softened, about 5-7 minutes.
  • Add the chicken broth and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Then, reduce heat to a low simmer (medium-low heat or low heat depending on your stovetop). Simmer for about 10-20 minutes (or until meatballs are done).
  • Add the parsley, oregano, and the leafy greens. Stir until just wilted.
  • Add the cooked meatballs into the soup, taste and add salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Ladle soup into bowls, sprinkle with parmesan and enjoy!

Notes

  • The meatballs freeze well. You can make double the meatballs recipe and freeze half, or make the full recipe of meatballs (freeze half) and make half the soup recipe (for 4 people).
  • To freeze the meatballs: once they are cooked and have cooled, put your pan straight in the freezer. Leave them for about 1-2hrs, then take them out and throw them into a freezer bag. Squeeze out as much air as you can, and then put back in the freezer for up to 3-4 months.

Tried this recipe? Mention @coachingbyg or tag #coachingbyg!

Healthy Holiday Eating Strategies: How to Eat Like You Love Yourself This Season

The holiday season is a challenging time for fitness. Are you anticipating the food coma associated with overeating at Thanksgiving? How about the beginning of the holiday party season? Traveling, cold weather, and family stress can also add to the madness.

The Struggle is Real!

The social pressure around family dinners, office holiday parties, platters piled high with pie, and endless streams of alcohol prove to be too much for many people. Traveling leaves people turning to fast food options and it is also tempting to indulge in family members’ famous dishes. These few healthy holiday eating strategies from Coach G will help you navigate this tricky time of year, avoid mindless consumption, and leave you feeling successful but not restricted.continue reading »

Making the Most of Your Summer Garden

It is July and my garden is in full bloom! Cucumbers are bursting onto the vines, tomatoes are green and getting ready to ripen.  Basil, chives, cilantro, dill, oregano, thyme, and rosemary overflow the beds. My biggest crop is butternut squash.  I think butternut squash and its seeds are my favorite food ever. As a professional chef, I was trained how to cook a variety of fresh foods in creative ways. However, you do not need to be a professional chef to make the most of your summer garden or local farmer’s market. Simple preparation often yields the best results.

Gardens are very affordable to start, and gardening is a rewarding activity that can involve the entire family. I started my garden for very little money – purchasing organic seeds and planting those seeds in paper pots on my screen porch. I planted them all in May and now my garden is overflowing in bounty.

I love having food at my fingertips. Nourishing, fresh, organic, delicious food. No package. No additives. Just pure unadulterated food.

So, you didn’t start a garden. Ok—there are farmer’s markets galore and fresh organic produce all around. Farmer’s markets are the way to go, if possible, because you will know exactly what is in season—because that is all they have! No fruit from across the globe ripened unnaturally with chemical assistance, just fresh ready to eat goodness. In many cases, farmers will have creative suggestions to prepare the food they are selling. Learning where your food comes from is very important and at the farmer’s market, you are purchasing goods directly from the source.

Eating what is freshly grown is not just about organic—it’s really about HOW we were meant to eat.  The way food ripens—the time of it with the season and with the pollinators has a rhythm of the earth.  The sugars and starches and fibers and minerals and vitamins in each morsel is timed just right by mother earth to support your microbiome-your second brain. One of the ways we whack our rhythms is by eating fruit and vegetables that are not in season. Yes—Mother Nature has a plan and we are best off following it.  Want to learn more? Schedule a nutrition Counseling session with Dr. Giulia Isetti and learn how to create the rhythm and routines that best suit your individual needs.

The Truth About Sweetener

Everyone loves a sweet treat. But if you are going to indulge, make sure to do so wisely. Many people are unaware of the harmful toll added sugar takes on their body. Simply adding sugar to your coffee every day can add up. According to the book Nourishing Traditions: “Sugar consumption is associated with hyperactivity, behavior problems, lack of concentration, and violent tendencies. Sugar consumption encourages the overgrowth of candida albicans, a systemic fungus in the digestive tract causing it to spread to the respiratory system, tissues, and internal organs.” It is important to note that the sugar we use to sweeten coffee is manufactured, not found in nature. A fantastic and natural alternative to sugar is stevia. Stevia comes from a leaf and it is found in nature. It can be added to sweeten coffee or anything else. When selecting stevia at the store, look for one that is water based rather than alcohol extracted. Here is G’s favorite stevia.

Cooking Fats

It can be a challenge to determine what oil to use for cooking. There are many new oils on the market, but they are not as clean as advertised. When selecting an oil to cook with, it is important to consider the process used to produce the oil. Dr. G recommends using expeller pressed oil only. Expeller pressed coconut and avocado oil both have high smoke points which makes them great for cooking.

Another fantastic cooking fat to use is high-quality butter. Both coconut oil and butter are high in vitamins D, A, and K which are essential for proper brain and bone development. The short chain fatty acids that can be found in high-quality butter have antimicrobial properties that are great at protecting us from viruses. Coconut oil contains medium chain fatty acids that also have antifungal and antimicrobial properties.

When selecting your oil at the store, it is important to make sure it is expeller pressed and extra virgin. Here are some of G’s favorite products:

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