Television to Reality

So I’ll admit it…I may watch a little TV during the day,¬†probably a little more than I should ūüėȬ†However, yesterday morning I came across a commercial¬†¬†for Tyson’s Chicken Nuggets.¬† It starred a young girl eating what looked like delicious chicken nuggets. While I am sure they were delicious, it got me thinking, how does television advertising play into what people purchase at the store or what they consume?¬† I wanted to take a deeper look into this.¬† I found an article from Yale University discussing the effects food advertising has on compulsive eating as well as the choices the consumer makes.¬†¬†In the findings of their study there was a direct correlation between unhealthy eating habits, snacking at nonmeal times, and over consumption of unhealthy food.¬†How do we¬†change these types of behaviors.¬† I think it steams from choosing healthier alternatives from the¬†advertising we see on¬†TV.¬† While it may take a little more time, it will help in the end and¬†make¬†for a healthier you.¬† ¬†Super interesting article if you are one for reading scientific articles (seems weird…in college I never wanted to read much into these things, and now I can’t get enough of them!)

Anyways….what did I do do you say? I decided to make the chicken tenders,¬†but not from the bag….I made my own!!! A much healthier alternative and plus it was fun!

Homemade Chicken Tenders

adapted from

8 chicken breast tenders-excess fat cut off

4 Tbsp old bay seasoning (you can use any other seasoning for chicken for desired heat)

2/3 cup bread crumbs

1/3 cup parmesan cheese

2 tsp salt

2 tsp dried thyme

2 tsp dried basil

1/4 cup unsalted butter

Season the chicken tenders with seasoning.  Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a small bowl combine all dry ingredients and set aside.  Melt 1/4 cup butter in separate bowl.  Take each breast and individually place in melted butter to coat.  Then move over to breaded mixture and coat each chicken tender.  Place each chicken tender on a non-greased cookie sheet.  Continue this procedure until each chicken tender is on your sheet.  Cook for 15-20 minutes depending on your desired crispness.  Remove from oven and allow to cool.  You can serve with ketchup, bbq sauce, or ranch.

I also got real excited to try something new last night.¬† We bought a small 2 quart ice cream maker with some of our money from our wedding and have been making some mean vanilla bean ice cream.¬† Now I love vanilla bean don’t get me wrong, but I needed something different and man did I get it! STRAWBERRY ICE CREAM! Delicious, creamy,oooo baby was it good! Now if you don’t have an ice cream maker I would suggest getting one ASAP! but until then enjoy the picture and the recipe below!


Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream

1 1/2 cups fresh strawberries

1/2 cup whole milk

2/3 cups sugar

pinch of salt

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

2 tsp pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean (actual bean or paste)

Cut strawberries in half and place in food processor.  Pulse until strawberries are finely crushed.  In a medium bowl combine whole milk, sugar, and salt.  Using a hand mixer combine well until sugar is dissolved.  Stir in heavy cream, vanilla bean, and strawberries.  Place bowl in refrigerator for 1-2 hours or overnight.  Pour strawberry mixture into 2 quart ice cream maker and mix for 15-20 minutes or to desired thickness.  Freeze for 1-2 hours before serving to harden. 

Have a great day gang!!



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Where have I been?

Well…..I hope the following images will be able to explain the happenings in my life these past few months!! I am so excited for the continuation of kickin cuisine and all that comes with it! From new posts concentrating on delicious food, nutritional tips & recipes, guest posts from a chef who is near and dear to my heart, training exercises, and workouts to help all kinds of folks, I am looking forward to the coming months!

So here’s to food, fitness and fun from kickin cuisine!!! ūüôā

Now for the main event…the recent happenings!!

Getting married July 9th

Honeymooning in the Florida Keys!


Mahi Mahi from our honeymoon

Shrimp Rosada from our honeymoon

Hogs Fish-Only found in the Bahamas & the Keys = the most buttery and delicious fish I have EVER tasted!

Garlic Shrimp and Pasta-tailgating favorite…recipe to come

Sweet Sausage & Basil Pasta


my rekindled romance with my new bike

forever a passion…

still kickin it!!!!!

Soo very excited to be back and I am pumped to share with you all!! Thank you!



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Whew! Already halfway through the day and it has flown by! Having a quick breakfast this morning was  must as I went to Farrells for the next 10 week session starting up today!  I made a quick smoothie and some peanut butter and banana toast with chia seeds on top!

Strawberry Smoothie:

6 Frozen Strawberries

1/2 cup skim milk(almond milk would work too)

2 ice cubes

1 scoop vanilla whey protein

At Farrells I got the opportunity to measure and speak with some new students.¬† I love being able to see people on the beginning of their journey to a healthier and more fufilling lifestyle!¬† I look forward to seeing the changes these individuals will make! It has also given me a new challenge.¬† I am starting over with the Farrell’s challenge, with some different variations on the program.¬† As I am in Des Moines Monday-Thursday it is hard to get to a Farrells location.¬† I look forward to working on lowering my body fat percentage and dropping some inches! I will keep you posted along the way!

As I was laying in bed last night I started watching the Food Network (bad idea haha) but I have not been able to keep my mind of from a sandwich I saw on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives.  It was a root beer ham sandwich with all the fixings.  I thought I should recreate!

I took some sliced ham from the groecery store and put some vanilla extract and brown sugar and let it heat up.  Meanwhile I assembled the rest of the sandwich.

Cut the bread in half (I used a loaf of french bread) and spread mayo on one side.

Slice some tomatoes and put some pickles on the sandwich

Put lettuce and the cheddar cheese on that baby ūüôā Add the warmed ham and you have your masterpiece!

Well it is off to get some things done before a wedding this evening! So excited to show the dress I bought today for it later! Have a great afternoon!





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Locally owned

Well Friday flew right by! I have been running since 8 a.m. this morning and I am about ready to crash! I did however get two great workouts in today as well as shop and eat at some great local places!

I was able to get a good run in this morning! I am trying a couple new things with my running routine to change things up.  As a swimmer for years and years I operated in % of exertion.  Meaning for example I would go 60% for a 100 then 90% for a 100 then back to 60%.  I am wanting to maintain this in my running, which is somewhat interesting and extremely helpful.  I get bored easily when I run so this is a great way to change it up. Here is what I did this morning.

1-4 minutes 40 %-warm up
5-9 minutes 60 %
10-14 minutes 80%
15-16 minutes 100% -all out sprint
17-21 minutes 60 %
22-26 minutes 80 %
27-30 minutes 100 %-all out sprint
31-35 minutes 40%-cool down

As I continue on, I am hoping to incorporate working on my VO2 Max.¬† VO2 Max is the maximum capacity that oxygen can be transported and used in the body, basically what a person’s maximum cardiorespitory endurance is.¬† I learned a lot about it in college and want to start applying it to my workouts.

Anywho…on to the rest of my day! I was able to go to a couple of great local places, Roots Market and Rudy’s Tacos:

Both of these places are to die for! Roots has a great selection of organic and all natural food…in the summer I buy the majority of my produce there you just can’t pass it up! It also has a great bulk section where I was able to get some ground flaxseed, pumpkin seeds, and dry roasted organic peanuts for my homemade granola I am making tomorrow ūüôā I then ventured over to Rudy’s Tacos which is a great locally owned place that only uses local ingredients in all of their food. For the last month and a half we have been eating there on Friday nights.¬† It is not only amazing food, but I am always surprised at how many people I know who come to eat there.¬† For example, I saw my 6th grade teacher, my junior high band teacher, and some ladies I used to swim with! I always get the same thing and it is amazing every time I eat it.¬† So fresh and so so so delicious!

Chicken Enchiladas with fresh lettuce, tomatoes, and onions ūüôā YUMMO! (yes I love Rachel Ray;-D) and of course you can’t forget the orange crush to go along with it!

Cool atmosphere…good friends…great food…can’t get much better than this!

Until tomorrow! Have a great evening!




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Start of Something Great

Well folks! Here I am! Kickin Cuisine is onto a new chapter in life.

I started a great new job in Des Moines in January working as a legislative clerk in the Iowa Senate! Wow, what a great experience it has been..I look forward to the days and conversations ahead!¬† A lot of new changes have happened in a short time but one thing remains the same…my LOVE for being fit and healthy.

So stay tuned to more recipes, workouts, and shenanigans ūüôā



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