Posts Tagged by paleo challenge

Chicken, Sausage & Kale “Stew”

I’m getting bored with what I’m eating on this paleo challenge.  There are only so many times one can eat carnitas or grilled chicken before the pizza cravings start back up again.  And yes, I have been indulging a lot bit lately, so I need to get a more creative with my meals to keep me on track and away from cupcakes.  

On Sunday when I opened my freezer to see what I could defrost for dinner, I saw Italian sausage and chicken breasts.  Now my old go to recipe for Italian sausage is a delicious sausage soup, but it includes lots of orzo…not paleo.  Plus it has a tomato base that always gives me crazy heartburn.  So what to make?  I started scouring my favorite paleo recipe sites but didn’t find anything appealing overly appealing.  I then Googled “sausage stew” to see what would come up and saw a recipe for a chicken and sausage stew on the Food Network website.  I didn’t love the recipe and knew I could create with something better using the basic idea.  So here’s what I came up with:

Chicken-Sausage-Kale-Stew1

Looks good right?!?  And let me tell you…it WAS!  Seriously, I surprised myself.  I’m calling this a “stew” because it has the makings of a good hearty stew, but it’s still on the lighter side.  It’s full of chicken, sausage, carrots, onions, kale, tomatoes…YUM!  And the best part is that it was super easy to make…perfect for the cold months ahead!   

Chicken, Sausage & Kale "Stew"
Serves 6
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr 20 min
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr 20 min
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Ingredients
  1. 4 chicken breasts
  2. 1 lb Italian sausage
  3. 1 T olive oil
  4. 2 large carrots
  5. 1 onion
  6. 1 t dried thyme
  7. 1 t dried oregano
  8. 2 T coconut flour
  9. 4 cups chicken stock
  10. 1 14 oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes
  11. 1 14 oz can diced tomatoes with Italian seasoning
  12. 6 cups kale
  13. Kosher salt
  14. Pepper
Instructions
  1. 1. Cut chicken into bite sized pieces and season with salt & pepper
  2. 2. Heat olive oil in a large pot
  3. 3. Add chicken and sausage to pot and cook through, 8-10 minutes
  4. 4. Remove meat with a slotted spoons
  5. 5. Add carrots, onions, thyme, oregano, salt & pepper to the reserved fat in the pan and cook until onions are translucent, 8-10 minutes
  6. 6. Add meat back to the pot and coat mixture with coconut flour
  7. 7. Add stock and tomatoes, cover and bring to a boil.
  8. 8. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 30 minutes
  9. 9. Remove lid and continue cooking for 15 minutes
  10. 10. Add kale and cook for another 15 minutes
  11. 11. EAT
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 I know that 6 cups of kale sounds like a lot, but it really cooks down.    

Chicken-Sausage-Kale-Stew2

 

This dish would be great with chicken thighs for a heartier flavor and go nuts with the veggies…the more the better!  I made some roasted sweet potatoes to go along with this and that was the perfect side.  Get creative and let me know what you try!

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Week 3 of the Lurong Living Paleo Challenge

Lurong-Week3

Well week 3 was VERY different from the first 2 weeks.  I started off the week great and ended it up in flames with a beer in one hand and banana fritter in the other.  If you’re gonna go down, do it right!

Let’s start with the positives….exercise.  Early in the week, I got 2 PRs that I was really psyched about!  The first was a 5# increase to my dead lift.  I didn’t quite make it to my goal of 230# because my back was feeling tight and we had 70 lighter dead lifts later in the WOD.  But I’ll take that 225# with pride!  I also increased my strict shoulder press PR by 4# to 74#.  Being the girl who never had any upper body strength…that’s a big deal!

Deadlift

225# baby!

Then later in the week I headed down to Walt Disney World for The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler Weekend.  Not only did I run 10 miles and get this awesome medal:

Tower-of-Terror-Medal

But I did a TON of walking around the parks!  Not only is Disney always a super fun vacation, but it’s great exercise.  Check out my FitBit stats:

Fitbit-Stats

Both Saturday and Sunday include the 10-Miler since the race started at 10:00 pm, but subtract that and you have around 18 miles of walking in 3 days!  It’s a great way to burn off all of the not so good for you food that you consume while there, which leads me to the negatives for the week…the food & drink.  

Serious Paleo Challenge FAIL.  I knew this was going to happen since this trip was booked before I started the challenge, but I really fell off the deep end.  Epcot’s International Food & Wine Festival is going on right now and it is my most favorite time of year.  How can you go wrong with strolling around World Showcase sampling food and drinks from all over the world?!?!  So I did just that, I ate and I drank, then ate and drank some more.  And you know what?  I really have NO guilt about it.  I had so much fun that I am ok with a few days off track.  RAD Living is all about balance and I would’ve been miserable if I didn’t enjoy myself with my friends.  So I had a blast and we’re moving on…

However this weekend has put me in a bad spot for the challenge.  I’m now only doing 17% better than the rest of the participants, compared to an already not very impressive 39% last week…yikes!  

Lurong Diet Stats Week 3

Basically all I can do is just get back on track this week and do my best.  It’s a new week! At some point I have to get in WOD 5, which is a combination of power snatches, kettlebell swings, ring rows and box jumps….should be interesting.  

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Lurong Living Paleo Challenge: WODs 1 & 2

As part of the Lurong Living Paleo Challenge, all competitors must complete 10 WODs (workouts of the day).  During Phase I of the challenge (Weeks 1 & 2), three of those WODs must be completed.  These will be used as a benchmark and will then be repeated in Phase III to determine body composition improvement.  Each WOD has 3 levels of difficulty and athletes can choose which level they want to do based on their current skill level.  

LLPC-WOD-1&2-KB-Header

I’ve tackled WODs 1 & 2 already and here’s how they went…

WOD 2 – The Lurong Living Original Remix (Level II)

Time Limit: 12 minutes

  • 100 Kettlebell Swings, 25#
  • 100 Burpees

Athletes are allowed to partition the reps any which way they like.

LLPC-WOD-1&2-20#KB

I decided to start with off with WOD 2 on Friday because it is clearly the worst out of the bunch and I just wanted to get it over with.  I dread burpees (they always give me bruised knees!) and knew there was no way I was going to get through all 100, but I gave it my all. My game plan going in was to break up the reps 10 x 10, but after talking with Coach Ryan prior to the workout he suggested 20 reps.  Hmmm…  I knew I couldn’t hold that up for the whole WOD, but I figured if I could bang out 20 burpees right off the bat that would give me a good start.  

Not the best idea.  I was fine after 10 burpees, but by 15 I was feeling it.  I stopped the first round at 18 and moved onto some swings.  Well that 25# kettlebell now felt insanely heavy!  I did 15 reps and moved back to the burpees…12 more to bring me to 30, then 15 more swings.  I was already shot at this point and probably more than halfway through the time cap.  From then on I switched to 5 burpees and 10 swings for the rest of the time and ended up finishing with 50 burpees and 80 swings complete.  Not what I was hoping for.  This WOD was the suck!  I think if I stuck with the 10 x 10 method or even 5 x 5 I would’ve been much better off, but I’m not redoing this one…no way!

WOD 1 – The Triplet Teaser (Level II)

Time Limit: 18 minutes

21-18-15-12-9-6-3 of:

  • Wall Balls, 14#
  • Dead Lifts, 65#
  • Box Jumps, 16″

Step up or down is allowed for the box jumps.

LLPC-WOD-1&2-Deadlift

I had been going back and forth on whether to do Level II or III for this WOD.  The difference between the 2 is a 10# increase in the dead lift and a 4″ increase in the box jump, the wall ball weight is the same.  I know the dead lift weight wouldn’t be a problem since I can lift well over 200#, but it was the box jumps that were holding me up.  Box jumps are my GOAT (a movement you just plain suck at).  I can barely jump on a 16″ box and 20″ is just out of the question.  Thankfully we were able to step up on the box for this WOD, so I tried them out beforehand.  16″ was fine to step on but 20″ seemed very difficult.  Add in the wall balls and dead lifts and I knew my legs would be shot.  So I went with Level II.

Those initial 21 wall balls were a doozy.  If you’re not familiar with a wall ball, basically you drop down into a squat and throw a weighted ball into the air, catch, repeat.  They look like this:

LLPC-WOD-1&2-WallBalls

These always make me a bit dizzy from the up and down movement while looking up, so when I turned to do my first set of dead lifts I was a little disoriented for a second.  The dead lifts were fast as expected and the box step ups weren’t too bad as I alternated the leading leg every 5 reps.  I moved through the entire workout pretty steadily and by the time I finished the 12 rep set, I knew I was in the clear and just flew through the rest.  I finished the entire WOD in 13:53 and was really happy with that.  But when I finished, I was kind of wishing I had done Level III.  It probably would’ve taken me 15-16 minutes to finish, but I could’ve done it.  I really need to start pushing myself harder!

All that’s left for this week is WOD 3 which is a combination of hang power cleans and sprints…should be interesting.

What is your GOAT?

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