Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Charm City Kettlebells presents “The Ultimate Holiday Survival Guide”

We enter the beginning of our traditional holiday season tomorrow. It really amazes me that kids will be sitting in Santa's lap come Friday but Christmas will be here before we know it.

Most folks overindulge beginning NOW and since it's hard to always get to the gym at this time of year I wanted to make sure you have some body weight exercises in your arsenal so you can do effective workouts at home during this really busy time of year. Not only will you survive, you will thrive during the holidays.

I recommend you do the following circuit 4 times for a total investment of 20 minutes. You may choose to do it once if that is all the time and desire you have. It's really up to you.

You will be do max hold or max reps for 50 seconds and resting 10 seconds.

Exercise 1- Double Hip Extensions

Exercise 2- Push ups

Exercise 3- Chair Step ups (watch your head)

Exercise 4 - Pull ups (cheat if you must by jumping up and lowering yourself slowly) Use your imagination and not excuses. Find a sturdy tree limb if necessary.

Exercise 5- Planks

If you do this when you can't get to your normal workout you won't lose any of your hard earned gains.

Be fit,

Sandy Sommer, RKC

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Monday, November 24, 2008

Using Your Thanksgiving Bird To Create Amazingly Healthy and Tasty Fat Blasting Meals

It’s about that time of year again, the time when that big old bird comes out of the oven for Thanksgiving. Most people tend to associate Turkey Day dinner with horrible excess and the start of holiday weight gain. Now you can blame stuffing, mashed potatoes with loads of butter and gravy, and pumpkin pie for that, but leave the sexy turkey out of it! After all, turkey is packed with lean protein that simultaneously elevates metabolism and promotes fat burning and lean muscle growth. There is virtually no fat in turkey if you are willing to sacrifice the skin.

Protein is the sole macro nutrient responsible for building and repairing your body’s tissue stores (fat and carbs simply provide energy). Regular protein intake is vital in accelerating the repair of muscle damage from high-intensity activities like strength training and cardio interval training. Additionally, protein intake every two to four hours is essential in maintaining your current levels of lean muscle mass. This is important because the more muscle you have the larger your metabolic engine, thus the more calories (and fat) you burn on a daily basis since muscle tissue requires lot of energy to sustain itself. Protein is also the least likely macro nutrient to be stored as body fat and the mere act of digesting protein requires more than double the energy to digest than carbohydrate and dietary fat. So, if there is any food choice that you can truly get away with overeating this holiday season, it will be turkey.

An often overlooked benefit to eating turkey is that it is easy to prepare in bulk and thus will save you much needed time in meal planning and preparation during the busy holiday season. Think roasting a turkey breast from time to time! You can roast a large breast and then have tons of meal options for days. Just think of what you can do with all those leftovers! To inspire your turkey consumption efforts we’ve put together some awesome better body recipes that you can create with turkey as your lean protein foundation. Enjoy!

Turkey Salad


- 6-8 oz. Turkey Breast chopped into small cubes
- 1⁄4 red bell pepper
- 1⁄4 green bell pepper
- 1⁄4 red onion
- 2 Tbsp canola or olive oil mayo


Mix all ingredients together and enjoy over a bed of greens.

Makes one male serving and two female servings.

Turkey Cranberry Cream Cheese Roll-up


- 6-8 oz. Sliced Turkey
- 1 Tbsp Fat Free Cream Cheese
- 1 Tbsp Dried Cranberries 1⁄2 Clove of Roasted Garlic Salt and Pepper to taste
- 2 Whole Grain Tortillas


Soak cranberries in water for 20 minutes or microwave until soft if you are short on time. Mash the 1⁄2 clove of garlic. Mix cranberries, garlic, and cream cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. Spread the mixture into the inside of the tortilla(s). Add turkey breast. Fold up sides, roll up, and enjoy!

Makes one male serving and two female servings.

Turkey Medallions With Cranberry Glaze

Turkey Medallions:
- 6-8 oz. Turkey
- Non-stick spray Turkey Seasoning

Cut Turkey Breasts into small medallions, sprinkle lightly with seasoning. Reheat in a pan sprayed with non-stick oil on medium heat until lightly browned on both sides. Drip Cranberry glaze (below) over the medallions.

Cranberry Glaze:
- 1 Cups Dry white wine
- Turkey or chicken stock, as needed
- 1 1⁄2 Cups Dried cranberries
- 1⁄4 Cup of Pine nuts, toasted
- Pinch of Salt

Add 1⁄2 cup of white wine and 1⁄2 cup of turkey stock to pan. Add other 1⁄2 cup of turkey stock, cranberries, pine nuts and pinch of salt. Cook over medium heat until reduced in volume by half, about 4 cups.

Makes one male serving and two female servings.

Turkey Shepherds Pie


- 2 cups cubed cooked turkey
- 3⁄4 cup turkey gravy
- 1 small can whole kernel corn
- drained 1 cup of chicken stock
- 1 cup of water
- 3 cups steamed cauliflower
- 2 cups celery, chopped 2 carrots
- chopped 1 onion chopped 2 cloves garlic
- minced 1 bell pepper, any color
- chopped Salt and pepper


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. First you must make the gravy. Take the garlic, 1 cup of celery, carrots, onion, bell pepper, chicken stock, water, vegetables, salt and pepper to taste. Add to a pot, boil until vegetables are soft and blend in a blender or food processor.

Next, you will take the steamed cauliflower and mash it, or place it in a food processor until the consistency is like that of mashed potatoes.

Next, in a baking dish, layer the turkey, gravy, corn, remaining celery and mashed cauliflower. Bake, uncovered at 325 degrees for 45-50 minutes.

Makes 2 male servings and one female serving.

Turkey Florentine


- 1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach
- 2 tablespoons smart butter
- 1 cup cooked whole grain fettuccine
- 2 cups diced, cooked turkey
- 1 cup turkey or chicken stock 1
- (8 ounce) package fat free sour cream and onion dip
- 1⁄2 teaspoon onion salt
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- Non-stick cooking spray


Cook spinach according to package directions; drain. Stir in smart butter. Place noodles in a non-stick sprayed baking dish; top with spinach. Combine turkey, stock, onion dip and onion salt and spoon over spinach. Sprinkle with Parmesan. Bake, uncovered, at 325 degrees F for 25 minutes or until bubbly.

Turkey Green Bean Casserole


- 1 bag of frozen green beans
- 6-8 oz. of cubed cooked turkey breast
- 1 can of organic cream of mushroom soup
- 2 cups Kraft all natural fat free cheese
- Salt and Pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients into a casserole dish and bake for about 30 minutes or until completely hot. Makes one male serving and two female servings.

Be Fit,

Sandy Sommer, RKC

Charm City Kettlebells

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Sunday, November 23, 2008

Pre Thanksgiving Feast!

As you probably already know, there's only one nutrition company I believe has your best interests at heart. And when I heard they were having a rather unusual sale for Thanksgiving I had to tell you about it.

You see, Pro Grade has two big reasons to be thankful this week.
1- They have completely revamped their website. It really is cool and it makes ordering SO much simpler.

2- They have just released their brand new Anti-oxidant formula -Longevity

Oh, and the interesting part is it's an 11% off everything sale. Here are some other details I want to make sure you know about:

- Again, you receive 11% off all Prograde products.
- It will run from Monday, November 24th until Friday, November 28th at 11:59pm EST.

- Yes, that 11% will be applicable to SmartShip orders. But it only applies to that first purchase. Not ongoing.

- The coupon code your clients will need at checkout is:


(Yes, it all needs to be in lower case.)

- In case you missed it, the website is here

Oh, and you should definitely check out Lean. I've been using it with pretty amazing results! It's the perfect meal before our AM workouts.

Be Fit,

Sandy Sommer, RKC