Even though September is almost upon on, summer isn’t over yet in San Francisco. In fact, the sunniest months are just beginning! In the Bay Area, “Indian Summer” falls between September and November and this is the time of year locals and tourists alike flock to the city’s many parks, trails and beaches.
For this season’s top outdoor activities, we thought who better to turn to than Haley and Claudine, the gals behind the 10 Day Health Challenge [http://18grains.com/10dayhealthchallenge/]. Haley, holistic nutritionist and Pilates instructor, and Claudine, natural chef and spinning instructor, take you through their favorite (and healthiest ways) to spend a day enjoying the San Francisco sun.
Culinary Corner & Panoramic Picnic
Nob Hill is a mecca for boutique eateries, artisan coffee shops, and mom and pop grocery stores, making it a great neighborhood to stock up on goodies for an urban picnic.
First, grab a light and refreshing acai bowl loaded with fresh fruit and superfoods from Basik Acai [http://www.basikacai.com] on Polk and Pacific Street: ten times healthier and tastier than frozen yogurt, but just as satisfying! Two doors down you’ll find the Becampo Meat Co. restaurant and butcher shop [http://www.belcampomeatco.com]. Offering the highest quality organic, house-cured meats and regional wines, this is definitely a local’s favorite. Grab some salumi and cross the street to Cheese Plus [http://cheeseplus.com] for a huge selection of local and international cheeses, as well as a range of other artisan treats and fresh baguettes.
Ready for your picnic? Five blocks up to Russian Hill, on the corner of Vallejo and Taylor, lies San Francisco’s smallest park, Ina Coolbrith Park. It truly is a hidden gem, with a spectacular panoramic of the Bay Bridge and North Beach. Have a seat, enjoy your company, nosh on good food, and gaze over the San Francisco Bay in this tiny sanctuary.
2) Biking the Golden Gate Bridge
The Bay Area has a growing cycling community, especially this time of the year when the weather is warm. For a bit of exercise and gorgeous views, try the 8 mile journey from San Francisco across the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito. Not to worry if you don’t own a bike, places such as Blazing Saddles [http://www.blazingsaddles.com], will rent you one (with a basket!) for the day.
One our favorite routes starts at Fort Mason, winds along Crissy Field, up Battery Trail and crosses the bridge. Head down to the Marin Headlands and into the charming town of Sausalito, known for it’s houseboat communities and seaside restaurants, cafes and bars. Enjoy a refreshing drink or ice cream at a patio table while looking out into the sparkling blue bay. Bar Bocce [http://www.barbocce.com] and Cibo [http://cibosausalito.com/index.php], both on the main drag, are two of our favorite places to spend a few hours on a sunny afternoon.
3) Basic Training in Hayes Valley
Sure, San Francisco is known for its museums, Victorian architecture, and historic sites, but there are plenty of things to do that please the more fitness-minded. Let San Francisco— literally — be your playground! After exploring the vibrant Hayes Valley neighborhoods, hop over to Basic Training [http://www.basictrainingsf.com] on the corner of Hayes and Octavia for a seriously hard core workout.
Basic Training is a pop-up fitness hub created by Jenn Pattee [http://www.basictrainingsf.com/instructors/] (who doesn’t love supporting badass entrepreneur women?)! The parking lot-turned-grown-up-playground is open to the public every day for free. Use the space on your own time, join their free Saturday morning classes, or follow instructors as they lead you through the cityscape, sprinting down alleyways, hopping over benches, and doing pullups on streetlights. Basic Training makes working out unorthodox and fun, while showing you that the city can be a gym without limits.
Don’t forget to grab an organic cold-pressed juice from the Juice Shop [http://www.juiceshop.com] next door. You’ll need a thirst-quencher after that kickass workout! it
4) Golden Gate Park and Outer Sunset
With countless things to do in the 1000-acre Golden Gate Park, peddle boating at Stow Lake is a must. Rent a boat from the Stow Lake Boathouse [http://stowlakeboathouse.com] and spend a few leisurely hours exploring the manmade lake and scouting for wildlife.
Next, head a few miles west to the Polo Fields, another hidden gem tucked away from the hustle and bustle of city life. This is a great place for strolling around the trails, finding casual soccer games, or even listening to summer concerts. Turn up the fitness level by using the bleachers and tracks around the polo fields for interval training. If you have a hankering for more upper body exercise, you’ll find the Perrier Parcourse at the outer rim of the track. Built in the 1970s, the parcourse offers a series of rustic strength training stations where you can get a full circuit workout (and maybe a sliver if you’re not careful!).
The Outer Sunset is just a few blocks south of the Polo Fields and well worth a visit. Since Karl The Fog [https://instagram.com/karlthefog/?hl=en] (yes, it has a name!) is likely absent during San Francisco’s Indian Summers, now is the best time to explore this often-ignored, yet charmingly beachy neighborhood. Grab a coffee at Java Beach Cafe [http://www.javabeachsf.com], just one block from the Pacific Ocean. Continue up Judah and you’ll find Outerlands [http://outerlandssf.com] (cozy New American eats) and Judahlicious [http://judahlicious.com] (funky natural foods and juice shop).
Authors: Haley Whitley & Claudine Dagit
Claudine, natural chef, and Haley, holistic nutritionist, co-founded the 10 Day Health Challenge. Together they created a guided program to inspire healthy eating and mindful living. Their seasonal Challenge will show you that eating a diet based on whole foods can be deliciously enjoyable, cost-effective, and save you time in the kitchen. They don’t believe in counting calories or fad diets: they’ll shake up your approach to home cooking while making you feel like the a pro in the kitchen. Check out the 10 Day Health Challenge website [http://18grains.com/10dayhealthchallenge/] to learn more about their seasonal programs, which are full of nutritional support, grocery shopping lists, recipes, and a full 10 day meal plan! Claudine is the Founder and Head Chef at Cooking With Claudine [https://cookingwithclaudine.com]. Haley is the Founder and Director at 18grains Nutrition [http://18grains.com].
Beach Chalet live music / ocean beach
Trail run Lands end (RUNNING PIC)
Picnic in SF: pick up food from Ft. Mason farmers market, Bi-Rite and sit in Dolores Park for a picnic, local artisan food, juice shop project juice mocktail (PICNIC PIC)
Basic training SF by Palace of Fine Arts
Cool off Basik Acai on Polk (FRONT PATIO)
Parcourse, lunch at Outerlands (STRENGTH TRAINING)
Walking tour (JUMPING PIC)
Fort Funston hike LOVE this place
Meet at Basik acai
drive to Russian Hill park picnic
walk for jumping shot (maybe cable car)
drive to Hyde st. for bike rental w/ GG bridge in the background
Hayes Valley basic training- trainer to meet at 11:30am
These recipes are simple, nutritious and perfect for anyone avoiding – gluten, dairy, sugar, eggs, grains or legumes (almost paleo, however I used sweet potatoes – apparently our paleolithic ancestors cooked meat but not potatoes. whatever.)
Simply omit the animal protein and double the portion size for a deliciously healthy Vegan or Vegetarian variation.
You know what? I’m shifting the perspective here… Whether you’re avoiding certain ingredients or not – these are just delicious recipes I know you’ll love, and will leave you feeling nourished, energized and satisfied (not bloated and heavy)!
The common thread here is WHOLE, SEASONAL, ORGANIC ingredients…
As a woman who enjoys the occasional glass of wine just as much as a green smoothie, I thought I’d share with you my underlining philosophy on food and eating – that I hope anyone can agree with: paleo, vegan, what have you.
1) ADD HEALTHY FOODS!
Cutting out the foods we enjoy, grew up on, or are a part of our culture can be difficult and a bit sad.
I mean, who wants to give up Matzo Ball Soup!?
Therefore, I propose we start small by introducing new and delicious, nutrient dense foods into our day.
Here are a few examples of how you can do that:
Start your day off with lemon water
add chia seeds, cinnamon and flax meal to your morning oats
sprinkle hemp seeds on your salad at lunch
pack your own hummus and loads of veggies for a snack
have a green smoothie with a superfood powder in the afternoon
There you have it – you just added 400 calories of nutrient rich foods that boost your immune system, create healthy hair, skin and nails, and provide your body with nourishment that will actually keep you feeling satiated and satisfying. You’ll notice that nutrient dense foods will fill you up and keep you energized for longer than empty foods (Honey Bunches of Oats and Cheezits).
2) LOOK AT ALL YOU CAN EAT
With all this hype and chatter around dairy, gluten, sugar, soy – what our paleolithic ancestors ate and didn’t eat – it seems almost impossible these days to know what’s good for us and what’s not…
I propose we shift that perspective.
What about if instead of dwelling on the foods we can’t eat, we start thinking, “I can eat anything from the earth!”
How amazing would that be!? I think we’re safe to assume that if cultures have been eating it for thousands of years, we’re cool to, too: coconut, rice, fish, lentils, mango, honey, miso paste.
I don’t think the man in the Japanese fishing village is worrying about consuming too much rice or miso soup (fermented soy). It’s the American diet we should be questioning, the ThinkThin power bars and diet sodas.
News flash for those avoiding gluten: Gluten is only found in 4 grains: rye, bulger, barley and wheat.
Which are easy to avoid if you are eating a whole foods diet.
I mean how often do you go to the bulk aisle and scoop out a bag of bulger? Not often.
Look at it this way, in the bulk aisle there are LOADS of grains that are gluten free which you probably have never tried, let alone heard of. So why not try something new!?
For example, millet, quinoa, all rices, oats and amaranth are all gluten free.
In addition, as opposed to replacing your cookie with vegan or gluten free cookie, try satisfying your sweet tooth with THESES!!
And while we’re talking about clean eating and mindful living…I’d love to invite you to
JOIN ME ON May 30th in West Marin
It’s a weekend of combined
HEALTH: green smoothies, walks, mat movement, massage, relaxing AND INDULGENCES: cheese from the farm, wine, chocolate
So, what in the world makes a pancake “Paleo” ?
They’re dairy free and grain free! Seems almost impossible, right?
(note: I am NOT supporting the paleo diet as a healthy lifestyle choice)
Unlike your typical order of short stacks, which give you a sugar rush that is immediately followed by having to take a nap, these little buggers have just the right amount of fat, carbs and protein to keep you energized and satiated for hours.
I created these light and airy pancakes for our 10 Day Health Challenge Spring Guide and my bet is they become your Sunday staple too 🙂
(you can still get the 40+ healthy recipes here)
So, what’s in them….
1 ripe banana
2 T nut butter (walnut pictured)
½ t vanilla extract
½ t cinnamon (or more) to taste
¼ t sea salt
1 t coconut oil
Toppings: honey, nuts/seeds & coconut
1) Mash banana with a fork and mix in the nut butter and cinnamon
2) Scramble the egg with vanilla and salt and add to the mixture. Combine well
3) Melt the coconut oil in a nonstick pan, pour in half of the batter and cook for about 2 minutes on each side. Repeat with other half of the batter.
4) Serve topped with a drizzle of honey and slivered almonds
you can switch up nut butters
use almond extract in place of vanilla
add blue berries along with 1 T of flaxmeal
pumpkin spice for cinnamon
coconut milk for honey on top
maple & pecans in place of honey & almonds
And that’s not all – we’ve got 40+ simple recipes and healthy living tips that’ll leave you feeling like a rock star in the kitchen and cleansed for spring – check out our 10 Day Health Challenge guide!
Olive oil 2 chicken pieces (8-9 oz. total)
1 artichoke, trimmed and cut in half
4 new potatoes, cut with slits ¾ of the way through
1 lemon Sea salt, fresh pepper, Italian seasoning
2 T Lemon Caper Dressing
2 cups mixed greens
1) Preheat the oven to 400 and bring the chicken to room temperature. Coat a baking dish with olive oil.
2) Securely pack in the chicken pieces, artichoke halves and potatoes. Drizzle with 2 T of olive oil, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. Squeeze half of a lemon over the artichokes and the other half over the chicken. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
3) Remove the foil and continue baking for 10-15 minutes (or until the chicken is cooked through).
Scallops with Spring Veggie Pilaf Ingredients:
1 crookneck squash or zucchini
chopped ½ bunch asparagus
chopped ½ cup chopped green beans
¼ cup veggie broth
¼ cup cooked quinoa
1) Wash and prep the veggies (make sure to save half of your green beans for tomorrow’s dinner). Heat 1 teaspoon of coconut oil and saute veggies until cooked, about 5-7 minutes.
2) Add quinoa and veggie broth to the pan. Cook for another few minutes and season with sea salt and fresh pepper. Cover with a lid and keep warm while you make the scallops
3) Pat the scallops dry and season with salt and pepper. Melt 1 T of coconut oil in a small pan and add the scallops to the hot pan. Sear for 3 minutes without disturbing, then flip, and sear for another 3 minutes. Scallops should be well-browned on both sides.
4) Prepare a plate the warm veggies and top with scallops.
one of my favorite ways to cook fish is provencal or Mediterranean style:
capers, olives, tomatoes, rosemary and white wine
it’s heavenly combination!
Cooking fish in a parchment paper packet is wonderful for many reasons:
-simple with very little hands-on time.
-healthy way of cooking because the fish is steamed in it’s own juices.
-They are fun to serve at dinner parties, guests are impressed.
-you can customize the packets…Someone doesn’t like capers? No, biggie, leave ’em out!
-And the possibilities of herbs, vegetables and fish you can use are endless!
This dish is a perfect example of when I cook and not use a recipe or really pay attention to quantities. It’s really up to you and your preferences. If you really like capers, add more! Or use thyme in stead of rosemary if that what you have on hand. So, with that said, I’l list the ingredients but don’t pay too much attention to the quantities- make it how you like!
As you know, when cooking I chose every ingredient for a specific reason and eat for a “purpose” 🙂 this recipe is a perfect example of just that – each ingredient serves a health and nutritional benefit plus the combination of citrus and fat is key!
Haley, my partner at 10 Day Health Challenge and amazing holistic nutritionist, explains in the article why this is such a Super-Detoxifying recipe!
Before we can throw green tea, kale and brazil nuts at our wrinkles, we must go a little deeper than what’s on our plate. I think we can all agree, that the most beautiful woman in the room is the happiest woman in the room. No amount of makeup and hair products can fake that natural glow and vibe of a radiating happy chick! I love talking about foods and their health benefits, but I think first we should all remmind ourselves of this:
Now to what;s on your plate. It’s true, our food choices give us the power to reshape our beauty and body from the inside out. The foods and nutrients we consume affects cell growth (in our skin, hair and nails), therefore, it’s important we eat what’s best for maintaining healthy cell rejuvenation. Mother Nature has been so kind as to give us a planet full of berries, herbs, nuts, fruits and veggies, all of which are loaded with vitamins, minerals and other benefits for a glowing body.
Need any more of a reason to load up on sweet potatoes and almond butter? I think not!
Here are a few of my favorite foods and their Beauty-fing Health Benefits
Benefits: Protects skin from sun damage
Found in: Brazil nuts, cashews, walnuts, tuna, sole, rice, wheat
Benefits: Promotes strong hair and nails
Found in: Egg yolks, hazelnuts and sesame seeds
3) Coenzyme Q10
Benefits: Kick-start cell activity and provides energy to cells, supports healthy metabolism
Found in: Fish oils, walnuts, beef
4) Omega 3 fatty Acids
Benefits: Combats skin inflammation
Found in: Flax seeds (ground and oil), salmon, walnuts, hemp seed, nori
Benefits: neutralizes free radicals (caused by pesticides, uv rays, stress) by giving them electrons
Found in: Green tea matcha, berries, orange vegetables
Benefits: Supports cell repair and renewal.
Found in: Garbonzo and kidney beans, oysters, sardines, beef, liver, lamb.
7) Vitamin A
Benefits: Skin cell renewal
Found in: Leafy greens, orange and yellow vegetables (sweet potatoes, carrots, squash)
8) Vitamin B
Benefits: Overall skin health
Found in: Whole grains, nuts, meat, potatoes, bananas, prunes
9) Vitamin C
Benefits: Production of collagen and components that keep skin tone and firm
Found in: Bell peppers, brussel sprouts, cabbage, kale, kiwi, strawberries
10) Vitamin E
Benefits: Maintains healthy, moisturized skin and scalp. Supports healthy levels of antiaging glutathione
Found in: Almonds, avocado, chard, olives, papaya, spinach, sun flower seeds, tomatoes
(You can read about this beautiful city and the Formula E Race I’m attending here)
But we’re not interested in race cars 🙂 lets talk food!
Making time to have a healthy breakfast can be tough, especially during the holidays and while traveling. I mean, you can only eat like this for one or two days before feeling like a complete log.
But traveling with and keeping on hand “staple power foods” and knowing what to keep in your hotel room and home pantry can make all the difference between feeling exhausted or energized by noon!
– I travel with a baggie of mixed Chia Seeds, Hemp Hearts, Cinnamon and Vanilla Powder
– Individual nut butters are great too
– Pick up oats, hearty bread, whole fruit and mixed nuts/raisins from your local grocery store
World’s Best Hotel Oatmeal:
Not only is this easy enough for a 2 year old to make (attention: hot water) but EVERY ingredient is whole, from the earth and provides health benefits!
Oats: Proven to help lower bad cholesterol and boost good cholesterol. Low on glycemic index. Vitamins E and B, magnesium, calcium and iron
Banana: Potassium and vitamin C transport oxygen around the body to renew and revitalize the skin. Potassium, C and B6 are good for heart health. Good for athletes, bananas support performance, recovery, muscle repair
Walnuts: Fiber, Vitamin B, omega-3, antioxidants
Honey: Raw honey help reduce inflammation. Natural sweetener
Cinnamon: Antibacterial and anti-fungal, combats indigestion and bloating, stabilizes blood sugar.
The most frequent question I get is, “what can I make in the morning that is fast and healthy?” So here we have it:
3 Breakfast Recipes:
Prep on Sunday + Grab n Go during the week!
Chia Hemp Porridge I make this EVERY morning! I even take it camping and on every flight. I’ve never shared this recipe for the fear people will think I am a weirdo hippie…I mean, hemp protein powder in porridge is a bit strange. It is delicious, satisfying, satiating, healthy and I guaranty you’ll love it. And best of all, it can be prepared in jars or sandwich baggies weeks in advance. Ingredients: 1/4 cup Hemp Protein powder (super high in fiber too). 2 T chia seeds. 2 T oats. 1 t coconut oil. vanilla and cinnamon to taste. Add boiling water to the jar and let sit or cook on the stovetop on low until nice and gooey.
For the paleo people and meat eaters…
Fill non stick muffin tins with veggies like:
kale. spinach. zucchini. sun dried tomatoes. feta. bell peppers. artichokes.
whisk eggs and poor over.
Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
Keeps 5 days in the fridge
Enjoy at room temp or warm.
Medjool Dates, Almond Butter & Chia Seeds
My second favorite breakfast. This is perfect early in the morning when you are not quite ready for a meal but you’re needing a little bit of energy to get you going. I find this to be the perfect combination of carbs, sugar, fat and protein before a morning workout when I know I wont be having breakfast until around 10am. Note: 2 have about 200 calories.
3lbs OF A WINTER SQUASH!
I believe that you can eat as much from the EARTH as you want and you will NEVER gain weight.
my theory: our bodies recognize squash, seeds and salmon NOT maltodextrin & lecthin (found in almost anything packaged)
I don’t write about “dieting” and counting calories because I don’t live that way. Restricting myself from foods that my body wants (sea salty almond butter and egg yolks) does not work for me. If I can give you one piece of staying slim advice, it would be to eat whole foods.
“it’s not about how much you eat – it’s about what you eat”
Also, listen to your body… Some mornings I wake up at 6am famished and make myself a bowl of oats, almond butter, banana and chia seeds, and other mornings a kiwi holds me over until noon…
It was a Tuesday and my first day off from “cooking for my job” in 12 days. So the laaaaaaast place I wanted to be on my day off was in the kitchen. These meals take less than 5 minutes of prep and are SO SIMPLE you don’t even need a recipe!
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner combined was LESS THAN 10 INGREDIENTS total! (Hello, that’s less than the number of ingredients in a single CLIF bar) and each meal took me less than 5 minutes to prepare.
Whoever said eating whole and healthy had to be hard, huh?!?
Winter Squash Recipe and Menu Roasted Squash with Breakfast: Tahini, Goji Berries, Chia Seeds & Hemp Hearts Lunch: Roasted Kale & Poached Egg Dinner: Roasted Broccolini & PanSeared Salmon
I ate more animal protein than usual because I took a Kick-A** TRX class here!
Haley and I also created a guide to healthy eating and living – it’s 25 pages packed with my recipes, a grocery list and Haley’s nutrition tips. Eating whole has never been easier – or more delicious – Grab your guide here!
My roommate (slash amazing close friend since middle school) is a pesca-vegan (a vegan who eats fish), and let me tell you, she is one knock out bangin chick!
Besides for me eating eggs, we eat the same. You will not find manufactured/processed boca burgers and soy milk in our fridge, or vegan/gluten free cookies and crackers in our pantry.
In our kitchen you’ll find: avocados, nut butters, beans, grains, homemade almond milk, fish, coconut oil and loads of veggies! The only animal products in our fridge are eggs (mine) and fresh fish occasionally.
I just spent a week in Mexicoby myself and when I got home I realized that the only animal protein I ate that week was ceviche one night (since my friends went out on their boat and caught beautiful fish) and 2 eggs for dinner after a beach-cross-fit class. My point is, when you are laying in the sun all day reading, you do not need to eat as much as you would on a day you are running around and being active. LISTEN to what your body is asking for. Do you really need steak at 7pm when you’ve just been sitting behind a desk all day? Probably not.
The common thread here: EAT WHOLE FOODS – you will never gain weight eating from the earth!
So there you have it, if it came from the earth (and not a factory) eat it!
ps: I do eat chips and salsa and wine with chocolate – in moderation 🙂