Monthly Archives: August 2019

You Gotta Try Grilled Watermelon!

I had my doubts. I mean come on making the best summer fruit HOT? I just couldn't wrap my head around grilling watermelon. I had to try it. Like any other fruit once it is heated it changes the flavor. I remember my first time before tasting grilled pineapple I just wasn't quite sure what to expect. Crazy thing is, not knowing what to expect left me open to deliciousness. I'm going to enjoy watermelon cold and I will enjoy it hot off the grill too. Here's what you need to do.

Grilled Watermelon

  • Juice and zest of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil1 
  • small watermelon, cut into 1" thick wedges
  • Freshly torn mint leaves, for serving
  • Flaky sea salt, for serving


  1. Heat grill or grill pan to medium heat. In a medium bowl, whisk together lime juice, zest and olive oil.
  2. Brush lime juice mixture all over watermelon wedges and place on grill. Cook until grill marks form and fruit softens slightly, about 2 minutes per side.
  3. Sprinkle with mint and flaky sea salt and serve. 

You can take my word for it or not. Either way, just make some grilled watermelon.

Let me know what you think,

Coach Nancy

A Post from a Big Jerk

I haven't been sleeping well lately. Actually I haven't been sleeping LONG lately. I usually fall right to sleep but am wide awake sometime between 2 and 2:30am. I've been dealing with it pretty well, until I didn't.

You know when you're tired and little things that really don't matter turn into big things, if you let them? That was kind of my morning, at least until a few minutes ago, when I came across the video clip below in an article. It's kind of funny how a clip from a fictional character can hit you so hard. All of sudden not having oatmeal in the house and the small contractor screw-up didn't seem worth getting worked up over.

Just a little reminder. People matter. Relationships matter. Not being a jerk matters. Love somebody a little harder today. It will matter.

Thanks Forrest.

- DC

Want to Gain Weight? Do This.

To gain weight fast: Eat as much and as fast as you can.

To lose weight, try the Opposite: Eat slowly and deliberately without distractions.

Quickly devour everything and gain weight. 

Our “satiety mechanisms” kick in about 20 minutes after we start eating a meal. No matter how much we eat during the first 20 minutes, our bodies don't feel satisfied or even full until we hit the magical satiety time.

That’s why many people overeat: they eat too much during the first 20 minutes, thinking they’re not full. Then, 20 minutes later, they feel “overfull” and guilty.

Why not do the Opposite?

Slow down. Enjoy your food. Stay "checked in". Nibble for the first 20 minutes of your meal until your satiety mechanism kicks in.

You’ll feel more physically and mentally satisfied with less food. Your stomach will thank you. And your waist line will reward you. 

Eating slowly can improve our digestion. Calm us down. And help us feel more satisfied with less food.

Which means we lose weight while enjoying life more. Win. Win! I find this is a battle not easily won in one meal. I need to work at it. If you're like me and need a bit more help, sign up for our Fall Fat Loss Challenge.

You chose. Eat Fast- helps you to gain weight OR Eat Slowly and see what happens.

To your best health,

Coach Nancy

Living Long, Living Well. I’ll Take Both (if I can get it)

I just finished listening to the audio version of "Spring Chicken: Stay Young Forever (or die trying)", by . author Bill Gifford. The book is an interesting history and exploration of all the different (and sometimes downright weird) ways people try to add years to their life. 

I think we have it all backwards anyway. Sure, I am not in any hurry to die, but I don't want to live longer just for the sake of adding birthdays. 

Instead of adding years to my life, I'd rather add some more life to my years, no matter how many I have left.

Instead of being obsessed with (not) dying, I think it's more productive to be some more effort into really living.

Of all the different things that Gifford explored in his book, from vitamins and supplements, drugs, cold therapy, transfusions, the lot of it, there were two things that stood out as credible and evidence based that really seem to add both longevity and better health:

  • Caloric restriction of some kind. Intermittent fasting seems to be the easiest and most sustainable way.
  • Exercising 100 minutes a WEEK adds 7 years to life.

It really is that simple, noting that simple and easy are not the same thing.

There is also good evidence that coffee and red wine are helpful, and maybe a few select supplements and a medication or two. 


Skip a meal once in awhile.

Get moving.

And I am not just being a homer for these things, even though I have long advocated both. I am not interested in doing things that don't matter, but when I find out they do, well then let's get on it!

Nancy and I really do love what we do. Most people know what a healthy meal looks like. But fitting it in to their crazy life? That's a whole 'nother thing. We can help with that.

And the moving part? We believe there is absolutely no reason why men and women in their forties, fifties, sixties and beyond shouldn't have access to professional fitness coaching that is challenging and fun, yet appropriate for the realities of aging. PROactively aging is a whole lot better than just, well, getting old. 

Fall is upon us. The older I get the faster the years go by. September is a perfect time to commit (or recommit) to being the healthiest you can be for as long as you can be.

Ready to get started? Click the button below and let's talk about it. We'll even give you Two Weeks of our multiple-time award winning training for FREE. 

Don't just let life happen, around here we Make It Happen!

See you soon,

- DC

A Glorious Chicken Salad for Summer

Summer is such a great time to enjoy a meal served cold. This meal travels great so enjoy it for your lunch break or bring it in your cooler to the beach. It's refreshing and feels light. Cantaloupe are in season and that makes it the perfect time to make this dish. 

Chicken Salad with Cucumber and Melon

  • 6-8 ounces Cooked chicken, chopped (your portion size)
  • ½ cup of diced cantaloupe or honeydew melon
  • ½ cup finely chopped cucumber
  • ½ cup finely chopped tomato
  • 2 Tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 ½ teaspoon orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons light olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon cilantro
  • pinch of pepper

Combine lime juice, orange juice, olive oil, cilantro and pepper in a jar. Shake to combine. Mix everything else into a large bowl. Drizzle with dressing and toss ingredients to coat everything.

This is fantastic, but don't rely on me. I invite you to make this yourself and then tell me what you think!

Enjoy good food,

Coach Nancy

Take a Chill Pill

Recovery week is almost here. September 2- September 6 is a scheduled time off from your training at the gym. Most of us take planned vacations from work where your mind can take a break from the routine of all that you do each day at work. We look forward to them, enjoy them, and feel better when we do get back to work. It's refreshing. The same is true for your physical training at Cr8 Fitness. 

If you've been with us for a length of time, your body is giving you a few signals that you are ready for a time away. If this is your first time taking a recovery week here are 5 reasons why it is important. 

C- Confidence. Physical training and the health it brings is what Dean and I specialize in. The trust you place in us continually inspires us to be the best and do the best for you. We design in hour in the gym as part of our plan through the week, the month, and the year. Through the whole process we work at keeping the confidence you placed in us. Check out this great article written by Coach Dean covering the ins and out of "Why Recovery Weeks?"

H- Health, your health is our primary concern. Each day as you give your all it takes a toll. Remember you train like athletes because life is an event you want to do very well. Every sport has its season and it's off season. Even during a sport season there are weeks off or longer breaks in between games. It's on purpose to keep you training longer and staying healthy for it all. Same goes for you and your training at Cr8 Fitness.

I- Injury prevention. If you are hurt you can't train. (or at least you can't train as hard as you want) Ignoring those little aches and over tired body muscles can be a precursor to injury. 

L- Longevity. Dying is just not on my To Do list- EVER. I'm not in control of all that is going to happen to me and you aren't either. Yet, we can choose to live the best life possible. You've chosen to have a coach(es). Trust us when we say you need a week just to do something a bit different. 

L- Love yourself. Be good to yourself during this week. It might mean extra sleep, or chilling with a friend, or kicking your feet up to read a book or starting to create a better eating routine. If you haven't signed up for the Fall Fat Loss Challenge, you should do that now. You will love how it makes me you feel. 

What are some good things to do while on recovery?

P- Prepare. "Before anything else, Preparation is the key to success." - Alexander Bell, He's a pretty smart guy. Think of how good you'll feel and how much less stress you'll create for yourself if you have your meals planned and prepared for the week. What about a meal ready to go in the freezer for those crazy days you will encounter? How about making your shopping list so your grocery trip is easier? Spend some time checking out some ways we can help you with that too, right here

I- Be Idle. Give yourself permission to do nothing. Seriously when is the last time you could just sit and do whatever came to mind for an hour. My days are filled with rush rush, so this is a true gift. Better yet spend that hour with your spouse, a friend, or someone who needs encouragement. Win/win for both of you. 

L- Lighten your work load. Take the hour you would have trained to tackle that nagging item off your To Do list. Cleaning out a closet is one of my favorite ways to feel like I've completed a monumental task. It takes time but I love the organization it gives me. I often have items to donate or give away. And I often find a treasure I had forgotten about. All wins

L- Leisure. That's a fancy word for do what makes you feel good. Hiking, biking, kayaking, paddle boarding, walking, shopping, whale watching, camping, or any other leisurely activity that brings out those happy feelings. Remember the world needs a lot more happy. 

Take it from me- Take a Chill Pill this recovery week. (September 2 - 6) We'll be back at training on September 9th. 

To your best health,

Coach Nancy

Zucchini Soup?

There is a lot of Zucchini out in the world right now - true story! Personally I think that's a good thing, because there are so many tasty ways to prepare this versatile veggie. 

But Zucchini Soup?


Garlic, ginger and onion mean it's flavorful and packed full of nutrients, and it can be served hot or cold.

Another special thing about THIS particular recipe is it is just one of almost two dozen included in our next edition of our Cr8 Your Plate meal planning service. which you can now try out free for 30 days. 

Every month you not get only amazing recipes, but we create the meal plans and shopping lists for you. You can access them online through the Modernmeal software platform, get downloadable copies, or both. These are nutrition coach designed meal plans, designed to help you fill your plate (and your belly) with what you need for your best health - all for as low as $15 a month. You are practically stealing them at that price! 🙂

Subscribe to Cr8 Your Plate here, and then collect that Zucchini and get cooking!

- DC

Zucchini Soup

  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil, divided 
  • ½ medium onion, chopped 
  • 2-3 large cloves garlic 
  • 4 medium zucchini, chopped 
  • 4 cups chicken broth (homemade is preferred) 
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger 
  • 1 tsp. sea salt 
  • Ground black pepper, to taste 

Heat ½ tbsp. coconut oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add onions, then smash garlic cloves with the flat side of a knife or the bottom of a glass and add to pan. Stir often and cook until the onions and garlic are soft and golden, but not browned, about 7 minutes. Add the other ½ tbsp. coconut oil to the pan, then add the zucchini. Stir to coat the zucchini with the oil, and then cook until it begins to soften, about 5 minutes. 

Add the broth, bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to simmer. Let the zucchini cook 45 to 60 minutes until it’s very soft. Carefully, purée the zucchini and broth in a blender or food processor, or with an immersion blender. If you’re using a blender, work in batches, filling the canister only halfway each time. Pour the purée back into the soup pot and add ginger, salt, and pepper. Cook on low heat, 5 minutes, just to combine the flavors. 


When Life Gets Turned Around

Do you like routine? For things to go according to plan? For smooth sailing?

For the most part, that describes me perfectly. Make a plan and stick to the plan. Make a list and check it off in order, one at a time.

Unfortunately there is usually something that gets in the way.

It's called LIFE.

The project gets changed, an appointment doesn't show up, a vendor doesn't come through, Nancy and I get into an argument, or if you ask my kids the worst of all, the internet goes out. The horror!

It's no secret that all of this causes STRESS.

When you walk into the gym to train today, you are going to notice the training board is different. It's out of order. The warmup is on the right and the training is on the left. It's unfamiliar. I think it's the first time in 11 years I've written it up that way. It may be uncomfortable. It may even stress you out a little. It was done on purpose. 

Contrary to popular opinion stress is not a bad thing. We actually need stress to survive and even thrive.

Too MUCH stress though, and we start to break down. Emotionally, physically, psychologically - all of it.

But it's not like you can't do something about it. The "stress monster" can be tamed. Every day when you walk in the gym, train appropriately, and recover well, you are helping tame stress.

You are building RESILIENCY. Toughness. The ability to bounce back.

And it's not the only thing that we can do to address stress. 

Healthy Eating is not optional when you want to tame stress and build your resiliency muscle. The way our bodies function at the cellular level has everything to do with our quality of nutrition. Most disease and death in the United States can directly be linked to lifestyle choices - inactivity and lousy eating habits. The human body has some inborn resilience, but eventually all the excess sugar, fat, calories and alcohol is going to cause it to break down. 

So let's do something about it.

Today registration opens for the 2019 Fall Fat Loss Challenge.

This FREE challenge is designed to help you break the habits of poor nutrition through 4 very specific ways:

  1. Creating Awareness
  2. Recognizing Full
  3. Nourished not just "Fed"
  4. Hormone Regulation and Decision Making

We want to work on breaking the cycle of Emotional Eating, and build resiliency through a healthier body.

There is no drug known to man that is as effective as regular exercise and proper nutrition.

No pill, potion, or lotion will undo poor exercise and nutrition habits.

Your Stress isn't going away. You can't drink it out of existence or eat it under the table. I've tried. Maybe you've tried. It doesn't work. My former 280 pound self will tell you that.

Let's do something better.

Something that is proven to work, every time it's tried, and doesn't come with any side effects.

Except feeling better, if that bothers you.

I don't think it does, why is why you need to head on over and join the 2019 Fall Fat Loss Challenge right now.

See you there!

- DC

Try Sleeping With a Mosquito

My life has been influenced by so many people- Coach Dean, my parents, teachers, friends, and family. Just as I have been influenced by others, inevitably what I do and say will influence others for good or bad. As the African proverb puts it, "if you think you're too small to make a difference, you haven't spent the night with a mosquito." The mosquito makes a difference in an annoying way, but the principle is still the same. One person can be the voice for truth, one person's kindness can save a life. Each person matters. 

5 ways your influence translates into the gym

  1. Be Good to Yourself- You aren't 16 anymore, and that's ok. Just because you aren't a kid doesn't mean you have to give up on moving, feeling, looking, and maybe even acting like one! Smart Training is listening to your coach and listening to your body in order to stay safe and injury free on your journey to superhero strong and fit. If you listen- others will too.
  2. Be Good To Everyone- Be polite and play nice. Treat people in (and outside) of Cr8 like you want them to treat you. 
  3. Eat Good Foods- Your body is awesome. Superhero Awesome. When you feed it what it needs, you build healthy cells and a metabolism that wants to get rid of excess body fat. It's amazing that when you eat good food, others will notice. They'll notice in how you look and  how you act. When they ask you then your influence will really shine.  
  4. Shout Out Good Things- You really don't have to yell, but you do need to continually talk up goodness. It's easy to be pulled down by the cares of life. We all have something we are dealing with. Take time to encourage others, make them smile, congratulate them, and cheer them up. 
  5. Maximize All Things Good- Have you ever heard me proclaim that this is the Best Day Ever? My days rarely trump the day before and then the day before that. That doesn't mean I can't try, right? 

At Cr8 Fitness we are trying to change the world. We need your help to do that. By being an influencer of all things 'Good' you can spread health to first yourself, then to those closest to you, then to a larger sphere and so on. There's something about getting healthier that just automagically helps you be happier. And the world needs more happy.  

To your best health,

Coach Nancy

3 Delicious Recipe for Graham Cracker Protein Powder

One of the hottest flavors of UMP (Ultimate Muscle Protein) is Graham Cracker.  I know many of you want to keep this flavor a secret but you've also created some delicious recipes and I want share them with others.

Dan's Dynamic Shake

  • 1 scoop graham cracker protein
  • ½ scoop vanilla protein
  • ½ scoop chocolate protein
  • 1½ teaspoon peanut butter
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 fistful spinach
  • About 10 ounces of water

Blend until smooth in a blender. If you use a fresh banana, add in a few ice cubes to chill it. Enjoy!

Marquita's Marvelous Shake

  • 1 scoop graham cracker protein powder
  • 1 scoop chocolate protein powder
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut
  • 10 ounces of water
  • Ice

Blend until smooth in a blender.

Protein Powder isn't just for shakes, this recipe uses it to make some tasty protein bars. Makes my mouth water just thinking about them. 

Homemade Granola Bar

  • 4 scoops graham cracker protein powder
  • 2 cups oats
  • ½ cup crushed walnuts
  • ½ cup raisins
  • 2 tablespoons ground flax seed
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • Pinch of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
  • About ½ cup of water

In a large bowl, combine all the oats, protein powder, walnuts, flax seed, sunflower seeds, salt, and raisins. Add in the vanilla, coconut oil, and then the water a little at a time. At first it will seem very dry but be patient it will blend up. Coat an 8x8 pan with coconut oil. Press the mixture on the bottom of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Cut into bars or squares.

The great things about these granola bars is that they are flexible. Some shredded coconut or cacao nibs would go great in here. Experiment with different protein powder flavors for a different spin, too.

Check out this Graham Cracker Chocolate Peanut Butter Pudding that Coach Dean came up with. It will satisfy chocolate and peanut butter cravings.

After trying Graham Cracker UMP, let me know what you think. Let your creativity fly and when it does send me your favorite way to use Protein Powder in your meals. 

Enjoy Good Food,

Coach Nancy