What’s On The Menu – Frozen Dinners Aren’t Always Bad

When I provide nutrition counseling to clients, I always stress the importance of cooking the majority of your meals at home. Unfortunately, many people (including myself) don’t have the time during the week necessary to make a meal from scratch.

That’s why Shannon and I love wholesome frozen items like the frozen stir fry mix featured below. This skillet full of veggies take about 10 minutes to prepare and contains no additional seasonings, sauces or preservatives. I added shrimp for protein and we had dinner ready in less than 15 minutes.

Oh, by the way, studies show that frozen vegetables have just as many, if not more nutrients than fresh vegetables. As long as the ingredient list contains ONLY vegetables, than they are viable option for you to make a quick & nutritious meal.

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Addicted to Fitness Show Notes – Natural Flu Prevention Methods

Chances are that you or someone you know were affected by the flu in recent months. The 2017-2018 flu season was so devastating that Shannon and I decided to share any helpful information we could find on combating it on this week’s Addicted to Fitness podcast.

Before doling out our natural flu prevention remedies, we share what are listeners have been saying on the ATF Facebook page.

We recently celebrated getting 100 likes on our Facebook page by completing a 100 push up challenge on Facebook Live. We had several people cheer us on from the comment section including my first martial arts instructor and past ATF guest Master Amir Ardebily. Master Amir has a tremendous story and I encourage you to go back and listen to our interview with him.

Thanks to @thewombsanctuary for coming out & crushing the first group workout at @essentialbalancetampa. Join the next workout this coming Tuesday At 6pm. Visit to reserve your spot at one of these workouts. ⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀ •⠀⠀⠀ •⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ •⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ •⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #personaltraining #tampapersonaltraining #health #fitness #fitnesscommunity #exercise #fitfam #boxing #functionaltraining #kickboxing #cardio #active #strength #grouptraining #mobility #workout #Tampa #tampabay #tampafit #tampafitness #seminoleheights #seminoleheightshomes #seminoleheightster #seminoleheightslife #healthytampabay #ETTampa #essentialbalance

A post shared by Nick 👊Elemental Training Tampa (@ettampa) on

After the Listeners Talk Back segment we dive into our training recaps for the week. I’ve been busy building new workout programs including one for an ETTampa group workout in Shannon and I’s neighborhood of Seminole Heights. The owner of Essential Balance Tampa Hayden Sutherland, who you may remember from a past ATF episode, asked if I’d be interested in offering a group class to members of my community and of course I jumped at the opportunity.

If you live in the Tampa Bay Area and are interested in attending this class, visit Essential Balance Tampa’s website and reserve your spot.

Shannon has also been busy finishing up the required teaching she needs to perform to receive her “diploma” for her yoga teacher training. She led her mom through a 45 minute yoga session that was cut short by the same person you’ll hear when you listen to this week’s episode.

We wrap up our training recaps and jump right into our flu discussion. Ella, Shannon and I have all avoided the flu so far, but the following statistics show that we are very fortunate:

  • Doctor visits for flu related symptoms at his highest rate since 2009 swine flu & this flu season lasting much longer than normal (New York Post article Feb 2018)
  • CDC reported 36% effectiveness for this year’s vaccine (Fortune Feb 2016)

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We want to make sure you make it through this and following flu & cold seasons healthy, which is why we shared several common practices from a 2018 Well and Good on how to stay healthy during this time of the year:

  • Drink lots of water
  • Diligently wash hands
  • Don’t touch your face
  • Eat right and workout
  • Carry antiviral cleaning supplies

We also discussed several lesser known flu prevention methods including:

UV Treatment (Scientific Reports Feb 2018)

  • Far-UVC light has ability to kill airborne viruses like influenza & tuberculosis in indoor public locations like subways and airports
  • Unlike conventional UVC light sources, which can be carcinogenic & cataractogenic, far-UVC light’s wavelength is so small that it can’t penetrate human skin or eyes

Whole food micronutrient flu treatments

  • Quercetin – contained in foods like apples, plums, red grapes, green tea, elder flower and onions. Inhibits the virus’ ability to infect cells, inhibits replication of already infected cells and reduces infected cells’ resistance to treatment with antiviral medication (Mercola Feb 2018)
  • Allicin – contained in garlic, onions, shallots, Chinese chives and leeks. Studies show that regularly eating allicin containing whole foods may help prevent the common cold or the flu. If you do get sick, eating these items can reduce the severity of your symptoms and help you recover faster
  • Probiotics and zinc supplements also recommended

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We really hope that you and your loved ones made it through this flu season as healthy as possible. If you’re looking for another nutritious whole food item that could help give your immune system a boost, grab some sustainable super coffee from the Hemp & Coffe Exchange. Visit their website,, and when you place your order, make sure you use the promo code “ATF” at checkout to get 20% off your order.

We’d also really appreciate it if you leave us a rating & review on our Facebook page and in iTunes. It only takes a few minutes and really helps us reach more listeners.

Links to this week’s episode





What’s On The Menu – The OG of Coffee Creamers

The coffee creamer industry has really blown up in the past couple decades. Every grocery store now has multiple shelves dedicated to every type of creamer you can imagine.

Hazelnut flavored creamer made from soy milk? Got it!

Pumpkin spiced flavored creamer made from almond milk? You betcha!

I, on the other hand, prefer the original coffee creamer.


Besides collagen from Great Lakes, heavy cream is my preferred coffee additive. Two tbsp contains 12 g of fat (mostly saturated) and no sugar or carbs. It does contain a small amount of lactose so those that are intolerant may want to use unsweetened coconut milk if they want a fatty coffee creamer.

Just stay away from the sugar-laden creamers filled with artificial ingredients.

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Addicted to Fitness Show Notes – 3rd Annual Girl Scout Cookie Challenge

It’s that time again. We’ve got another Girl Scout cookie challenge on this week’s Addicted to Fitness podcast. We’re on our third year of this fun fitness challenge and this time Shannon is going to give it a go.

For all those new to this challenge, the ultimate goal is to burn off the calories contained in 3 Girl Scout cookies as quickly as possible.

Just like in previous years, we chose the peanut butter & chocolate Girl Scout cookie known as the Tagalong. We were primarily concerned with the calorie content for 3 of these cookies, but the other nutritional facts are: 14 g fat, 20 g carbs (12 g sugar), 3 g of protein.

Shannon downed three of these bad boys, performed a 5 minute warm-up, then jumped on our beloved Peloton cycle to burn off the 210 calories worth of cookies.

While Shannon was doing most of the heavy lifting, or in this case riding, I gave our training recaps for the week.

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In addition to doing several sessions on the Peloton, Shannon did yoga almost every single day and got to a yoga class at her home studio, Bella Prana. She also performed a couple HIIT workouts to round out her fitness for the week.

I had my personal training sessions at Title and Tampa Strength, including a session with a new ETTampa client. I’ve also been working hard on creating new content for you ATF listeners. We’ll be making an exciting announcement about our new weekly show real soon!

While Shannon was chugging away on the bike, I shared several interesting factoids about Girl Scout cookies like:

  • Since 1999, Girl Scout Cookies bring in about $700 million in annual revenue
  • Thin Mints are the most popular
  • All the girls on the boxes are Girl Scouts
  • In 1985, a 13-year-old girl sold $25,000 worth of cookies

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Thanks to Shannon’s Apple Watch, we were able to count down the final seconds before she reached the 210 calorie goal. Make sure you listen to this week’s episode to find out how long it took her to complete this year’s challenge. Then you can go back and listen to the previous years episodes to find out who completed the challenge faster.

Let us know what you think of this fitness challenge on the Addicted to Fitness Podcast Facebook page. While you’re there, please leave us a rating & review, which we’d also appreciate if you could do in iTunes. It only takes a few minutes and really helps us reach more listeners.

All you ATF coffee lovers should definitely check out our sponsors The Hemp & Coffee Exchange. Visit and read about their delicious & nutritious sustainable super coffee and when you place your order, make sure you use the promo code “ATF” at checkout to get 20% off your order.

Links to this week’s episode:





Addicted to Fitness Show Notes – Valentine’s Day Taste Test & Macros Game

Happy belated Valentine’s Day Addicted to Fitness listeners!

This may be a lesser, borderline manufactured holiday, but it’s still a great opportunity to give you all a holiday themed episode. You’ll be hearing this after Valentine’s Day but the topics discussed are applicable throughout the year.

We start off this week’s episode with the Listeners Talk Back segment. We asked the listeners which 100 rep challenge we should Facebook Live to celebrate getting 100 likes on the Addicted to Fitness Podcast Facebook page. The results are in and you all chose……


We will have already completed this challenge by the time you’re reading this but you can head to the ATF Facebook page and watch the video. Feel free to leave us a comment while you’re there.

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We keep our Training Recaps short and sweet this week. Shannon successfully completed a week’s worth of workouts that included a trip to her home yoga studio Bella Prana. She has to complete her workouts before Ella wakes up at 7am, which means she a has to wake up around 5am in order to get a 20-30 min HIIT, spinning or yoga workout in, and still have time to get ready for work. This is quite an accomplishment because Shannon does not enjoy getting out of bed

I on the other hand, am still knocking out personal training sessions at Tampa Strength, Title Boxing and client’s homes. The only other workout related info I have to share is that I inherited Shannon’s Fit Bit Charge 2, which we reviewed in a past episode. This particular fitness tracker is great if you want to track & log health data like heart rate, steps and calorie burn.

After a quick training recap, we jump into our holiday themed taste test. During a recent grocery shopping trip we saw that the diet & weight loss brand Atkins makes a peanut M&M knockoff. Being that peanut M&M’s are one of our favorite candies, we decided to do a blind taste test of the Atkins peanut M&M’s and the real thing.

atkins m&ms

I had already sampled the goods, which is why Shannon participated in the blind taste test to see if she could taste the difference between the two versions of the peanut M&M. You’ll have to listen to find out if Shannon could tell the difference between the real thing and the knock-off, but here’s the nutritional info for both candies if you’re curious

Real Peanut M&M’s

  • 1.75 oz bag contains 13 g fat, 30 g carbs (25 g sugar) and 5 g of protein

Atkins Chocolate Peanut Candies

  • 1.2 oz bag contains 11 g fat, 18 g carbs* (1 g of sugar & 15 g of sugar alcohols) 4 g of protein *also contains a small amount of artificial sweeteners

If you want to learn more about the effect sugar alcohols have on our body, go back and listen to our interview with the CEO of the sugar alcohol producing company, Swerve.

As if a blind taste test of candies you may have given your sweetie wasn’t enough, we also have a holiday edition of the Macros Game on this week’s episode.


Oysters are often thought of as aphrodisiacs

For anyone who is unfamiliar with the Macros Game, it is a nutritional trivia game that requires the contestants to guess the macronutrient (fat, protein or carbohydrate) when given its amount in a serving of a certain food.

This time around we test each other’s nutritional knowledge on foods that are often consider aphrodisiacs, which are foods that claim to increase libido when consumed. We tested each other’s knowledge on oysters, dark chocolate, sweet potatoes,  asparagus and other foods from Organic Authority‘s Top 22 aphrodisiac foods.

Make sure you listen to the podcast to find out if Shannon was able to maintain her winning streak. We also encourage you all to play along and send us your scores. If you get a perfect score we’ll share it on our social channels (FacebookInstagram or Twitter) with a special shout out post.

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You can definitely find that shout out on the Addicted to Fitness Podcast Facebook page. While you’re there, please leave us a rating & review, which we’d also appreciate if you could also do in iTunes. It only takes a few minutes and really helps us reach more listeners.

If you forgot to get a Valentine’s Day gift for your sweetie, get them a bag of sustainable super coffee from The Hemp & Coffee Exchange. Head to and use the promo code “ATF” at checkout to get 20% off your order.

Links to this week’s episode:




What’s on the Menu – The Best Breakfast Option Out There

I’m a gigantic breakfast fan. The options you have at breakfast far surpass anything lunch or dinner has to offer, and I believe it’s all thanks to one magical food.


Whole eggs, yes yolks and all, are at the top of my “Whole Foods” power ranking list. Right below eggs on that list is its frequent companion on a many diner menus. Steak.

Steak & eggs is high in protein & fat and contains a ton of important micronutrients like iron, vitamin B, choline and omega fatty acids. I had the meal below and swear I wasn’t hungry for the rest of the day. I believe based on the nutrition research I’ve gathered & personal experience, that this is a much healthier option than the meals filled with processed carbs that seem to dominate breakfast foods (cereal, bagels, etc.).

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What’s on the Menu – Cooking in batches is good for your health

Shannon and I really try our best to make one wholesome “Big Batch” dish every week. Having one dish that is ready to go whenever we get home from work prevents us from ordering out or picking up dinner. We’ve found that the less takeout and delivery we get, the better we feel. It’s also much easier on our finances.

One such big batch we make frequently is a Tuscan Chicken Skillet. I’ve shared the recipe with several of my clients and they all love it. It’s not exactly a quick meal, but it’s definitely worth the time. It’s also one of those dishes that I believe taste better the next day.

Below is the recipe and a few pics. If you end making it please send us and email ( or share a pic of it on our social channels (FacebookInstagram or Twitter).

Tuscan Chicken Skillet

  • Cook 1-1.5 lbs of chicken tenderloins in olive oil for 4-5 mins on each side, or until cooked thru⠀
  • Remove chicken from skillet, add more olive oil & 8 oz of chopped mushrooms, cook till soft⠀
  • Remove mushrooms and add an entire onion, sliced & cook till soft⠀
  • Add a can of diced tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, artichokes, garlic, spices (salt, pepper, oregano & thyme) and 1/4-1/2 cup of chicken stock⠀
  • Simmer till liquid reduces slightly then add chicken and mushrooms back in⠀
  • Remove from heat and add several handfuls of greens and season to taste⠀

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Addicted to Fitness Show Notes – A Review of Food4Thought_F4T Meal Prep Service

This week’s episode includes a recap and a review.

First, let’s talk about Nick and my training.

To be honest, it’s been a bit light on my side. Taking care of our little one and traveling for the holiday took over most of my week. However, I was able to squeeze in some short yoga and spinning sessions at home. As much as I love spending time with our little girl, I do confess how much I’m looking forward to getting back in the yoga studio for a full hour-long yoga session.

Nick meanwhile, has been truly enjoying his training sessions as they also serve as workouts. His fellow trainers at Tampa Strength have been passing along some new exercises that Nick has been busy learning, as they all prepare to launch a new training program targeted at moms. More details to come soon!

I made a comment about a hypothesis that more people are trying to be health conscious around the holidays nowadays, rather than waiting until after. This has actually been our approach in recent years – balancing the big holiday feasts with activity and more wholesome, light meals.  In fact, we actually discussed ways to survive holiday eating in a past podcast (listen to the episode here).

Nick suggest another great idea to stay health conscious around the holiday. The members of Tampa Strength are taking part in a challenge called Project Zero, which involves focusing on maintaining your weight through the holidays instead of obsessing about losing weight. It acts as a great accountability tool to help participants be more mindful about holiday eating. It also has financial incentives, which always prove to be a great motivator as well.

As for our holiday, we followed our usual Thanksgiving tradition, driving to see family. This year’s biggest difference was that we had the baby to introduce to everyone, which proved to be a lot more work than we anticipated. If you have any interesting holiday stories you’d like to share, please feel free to share them with us on the Addicted to Fitness Podcast Facebook page.


Our review this week features a meal service from right here in Tampa Bay.

It’s not the first meal service that we’ve tried given the number of companies in this particular industry. We’ve used larger meal services like Blue Apron previously, who have grown to the point of going public this year and apparently been slipping in their rating as well as their stock price, and also tried some other local meal prep companies (which we’ve previously reviewed in an earlier podcast episode).

This time around, we are sampling Food4ThoughtF4T, who reached out to us on Instagram and asked if we’d be interested in trying their meals. Owner, cook and delivery person, Adrienne Padron, dropped off several meals and asked us to review them. Being fans of food in general, we researched the company and decided to give it a go!

Food4ThoughtF4T has easy online ordering available and even delivers to local customers. You can enjoy multiple meal quantity packages (whose menus change each week) with the average cost per meal being $7.50. The meal options range from vegetarian, seafood, poultry and red meat.


I reviewed a couple of meals – “Caramelized Onion Turkey Burger” and “Chicken Fried Rice” – that Nick chose for me. Nick tackled the “Protein Packed Prosciutto Quinoa Salad” and “Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps.”


  • Compact packaging that even separates out some of the ingredients to prevent items like lettuce from going bad
  • Use of cheese to add flavor
  • Ingredients are fresh
  • Ingredients and macros are included on the packaging


  • Some of the dishes can be a bit on the bland side
  • No real heating instructions on the package
  • Nutrition info not included on the website

Be sure to reach out to them for more info – email –; number – (813) 586-1348 – or visit their website to pick out your meals and get started today!

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If you haven’t done so already, please head to iTunes (link) give us a rating and review. We’d also appreciate it if you’d support our sponsors. Stop on by their website,, and research their products. When you’re ready to buy their sustainable super coffee, use the promo code “ATF” will get 20% off your order.

As always thanks for listening & sharing the podcast and stay healthy this week peeps!

Links to this week’s episode: