How Anthony Bourdain lost 35lbs

anthony-bourdain-lost-35lbsHave you ever taken a trip and come back 10lbs heavier? Now imagine the weight you would put on if your full time job was traveling and eating all of the worlds best foods. That is exactly what Anthony Bourdain does. So how does he keep from becoming over weight? The answer: Jiu-Jitsu.

Bourdain told the New Yorker that “Since he started doing jujitsu, three years ago, he has lost thirty-five pounds.” Not an easy feat for a celebrity chief in his 60’s. Now it’s not only the exercise, it never is. Training Jiu Jitsu has also changed the way Bourdain thinks about food.

“Now that he trains nearly every day in jujitsu, he tries to eat and drink more selectively. “Off camera, I don’t go around getting drunk at night,” he said during the meals we shared when he wasn’t shooting, Bourdain didn’t so much gorge himself as graze. A big bowl of pasta is hard to enjoy if you know it will render you sluggish the next morning, when a crazy-eyed mixed martial artist is trying to ease you into a choke hold.” (Patrick Radden Keefe, The New Yorker 2017)

If you want to eat like Anthony check out his Acai bowl recipe over at A.V. Club. If you want to train like him try one of our NEW Jiu Jitsu classes at Vancouver Mind-Body Centre.

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How Anthony Bourdain lost 35lbs

The Confessionals of a Kettlebell Instrutor. Part 2. Section 35 – Food Follow Up.

Challenge – Marcia vs. the vegetables…
(Or: I had a plan. Then the plan changed.)

A while ago I came up with a plan for how to enjoy veggies and make ingesting them as inevitable and natural as brushing my teeth.

Friends – My written plan was glorious. The execution… may have left a little to be desired.

I learned a lot of useful information:

  • I really do enjoy red peppers.
  • Check that your fancy salt grinder isn’t faulty…
  • Overcooked omelettes are completely unappealing.
  • I really don’t know how to cook properly.

So, for all my fine talk about easing into vegetable-love, it turns out that I did the same thing as those of us who see an uncomfortable number on the scale and make a sudden (and drastic) life decision on the spot (like starting a 45 day colon detox, or signing up for 4 months of 5 am daily bootcamps). I didn’t have the right approach or education on how to change a lifetime habit. I was too fast out of the gate and tripped over my feet instead of starting with small, careful and achievable steps.

When I called out for help, a wonderful friend came to my house and showed up with support needed: bag of groceries, bottle of wine and an easy recipe that just so happened to include red peppers. I didn’t have to grocery shop, pick a recipe, or figure out why a cheese knife is different from a paring knife (that was an actual conversation). Instead of trying to do everything, I was able to focus on doing one thing correctly (two, if you count pouring wine).

Previously I wrote about small achievements in fitness. This scenario is on the same path in a different medium: a small achievement in the culinary arts.

The successes (and lessons) that came from the grand red pepper challenge were:

  1. Figure out what your plan A is. Decide how you will know if it is working (clear deliverables are the secret to any successful project).
  2. Be prepared to change plan A if it does not appear to be working.
  3. If it is definitely not working, step back from what just happened. Ask yourself:
    1. What happened? (salt grinder exploded all over my food)
    2. What failed? (the salt grinder’s mechanism, apparently)
    3. Make a plan to avoid it next time. (note to self: purchase new salt shaker without fancy grinding mechanisms)

These three steps take any situation from an accident to a ‘learning experience’. You are learning.

  1. Be a sponge. Soak up any education and lessons from your first kick at the can. If you don’t know the first thing about what you are doing, it’s hard to know where to pay attention, and what things are less important. Ask questions! Now you’re more prepared than you were before.

This all being said – I can now make a badass quesadilla. Check out the progress.

confessionals_04-01
Tomato, red peppers, green onions, salsa, fromage, chicken thighs, small burrito wraps.  And most importantly – wine.

 

confessionals_04-02
No fingers were lost in the making of this dish. No foodsafe rules being broken by having a glass of wine in the same proximity as the green onion.

 

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Yes. I need a roll of the paper towel in place of napkins when I eat.

Written with love by Marcia Lucas
Edited with vigor by Megan Chalmers

The Confessionals of a Kettlebell Instrutor. Part 2. Section 35 – Food Follow Up.

The Confessionals of a Kettlebell Instructor. PART 2 – FOOD.


Challenge – Eating Vegetables vs Me….
(Or: It is time to come to terms with my grudge against vegetables.)

confessionals_02I loathe vegetables.

I have been at war with them for as long as I can remember.  My mother can tell you about nights where I sat alone at a dark dinner table for hours, stubbornly staring down at cold cauliflower and broccoli on my plate.  When it comes to vegetables, I modelled myself after Jane Austen’s character, Elizabeth Bennet “An obstinate, headstrong girl.”

As an adult I’ve decided it’s time to change my mindset and approach to help me actually grow a desire & love for veggies. A victory would be avoiding a frown while chewing on broccoli and sucking back water to wash it all down… you know… the look a 5 year old makes while eating brussels sprouts.

So I call to arms beginner veggie eaters like me to unite & take this one step at a time.

Step 1 – Groceries

Pick a veggie.  Only one. Carrots. Red peppers. Broccoli… Educate yourself about it, learn the nutritional values and Google search recipes. Start to understand how your veggie can be prepared with foods you enjoy.  If we don’t understand something, we (humans) have a tendency to avoid it. Food for thought — Have you eaten vegetables at a restaurant and enjoyed it? Probably. How was it prepared?

Step 2 – Recruit your foodie friend.

Grab a friend who loves to cook and enjoys vegetables (Vegans and Vegetarians are great resources for this).  Let them know about your one veggie challenge and quiz them about how they prepare it.  What are quick ways to prepare this item?  Is it better raw or baked?  What should you avoid?  Over boiled broccoli is terrible.  Let’s win at just cooking it properly first.

Step 3 –  “Experience: That most brutal of teachers.  But you learn.” – C.S. Lewis

When you are working with food, the only way to learn is trial by fire (or marinating, or steaming). Once you’re set with recipes, it is time to do some cooking. Set aside an evening, purchase multiples of your choice veggie and get cooking. Focus on using your vegetable in a few different ways. Can it be prepared as a pickle? Is it best roasted? How does it taste from the BBQ?  Made into a soup?  

Cooking can be creative, so try to keep your testing low-risk and fun while you experiment.  If your recipe is terrible then try another… but make sure you re-read the old one to make sure you correctly followed the instructions.

Bonus Step – Purchase in season produce.

In season and local produce can taste a lot better than out-of-season and tends to be less expensive. This can help keep costs down as you experiment.

A fellow kettlebell-ist, Ayden and I were chatting about food preparation where he drove a concept home for me.  “Making time to prepare food at home is much more satisfying.  When you put the work in you can make a healthier, more colourful and tasty meal on your plate. It is just so satisfying.”

Well Team.  I’ve picked red pepper for this first round, I’ll report and show you how it goes in about a week.

What’s your veggie of choice?  How do you prepare it?  Hit me with your pictures and ideas!

The Confessionals of a Kettlebell Instructor. PART 2 – FOOD.

The Confessionals of a Kettlebell Instructor. Part 1 – Food.

 

confessionals_01Challenge: Willpower vs Food

(Or: That certain food vice that always beats your brain)

Everyone has a food vice.  For example – If I were to shout “ICE CREAM!”,  some of you would immediately start walking to the freezer.  But that’s okay.  Instead of feeling guilt, let’s deal with this head on.  When it comes to food, we just need a few rules to help our willpower control our food cravings.

When I decided to become a kettlebell instructor, I knew there were (and still l are) some tough habits/challenges I had to face.  One of them is my love for chips. I can smell those salty, crispy morsels from a room away when a bag has been opened.  If I could, I’d duct tape that beautiful foil bag of fried potato salt to my face like a horse’s feed bag.

Marcia ! What the heck?  Aren’t you an adult with responsibilities and a mortgage?  Where is your willpower?  

When it comes to salty, crunchy savoury food, my willpower has as much effect on me as a red light does on a late 99 B-Line Bus: as in, none at all.

Depending on willpower alone is like tackling Mount Everest without a sherpa.  It might happen, but it takes a heck of a lot more effort.  When it comes to our vices, be it ice cream, chips, cigarettes, liquor or cotton candy, we need a plan and perhaps some sherpas to help us along.

Here are some rules that I try to stick to.

Rule 1 – Groceries:
No chip buying.  Chip bags aren’t allowed into my house.  EVER.

Rule 2 – Parties:
No unnecessary grazing (and really, is grazing ever necessary?) I make sure to stay out of the kitchen area and other food stations to avoid eating for sport.  It helps to make sure I have a glass of water (or wine depending on the occasion) in my hands. Occupied hands can’t get into chip bowls.

Rule 3 – Mindset:
I struggle every day to get more vegetables in my meals. Yet, I have zero struggle with chips.  But what if I tried switching my mentality?  Veggies = good and yummy.  Chip = overcooked potatoes that fell into the salt jar on the counter…

This one is still underway, so I’ll have to get back to you!

Bonus Rule: Tell your people (or, get help climbing your mountain)

There are many reasons people communicate their dietary limitations; they may be celiac or diabetic, vegan by choice, have food allergies, or just struggle like me.  Your friends and family can be a huge support system when you’re out at restaurants and parties, if they know about your goals, maybe they can help you too.  

You may find implementing one of the above steps into your day may be a huge help in the small steps leading to great rewards.  

I’ll check in a couple of weeks to tell you how it is going. In the meantime, how do you handle willpower and a chip bowl?

The Confessionals of a Kettlebell Instructor. Part 1 – Food.