14.09.21, Sun

Feed & Water, WOD

With Fall fast approaching, we bring you the delicious…

Sweet Potato Apple Compote

* 4-5 Sweet Potatoes peeled and cubed

* 4-5 Apples cored and cubed (pick your favorite)

* 2-3 Tablespoons of olive oil

* Cinnamon

In a large bowl mix the apples and sweet potatoes. Drizzle the olive oil over the top and mix, use enough to evenly coat the mixture (but not too much there shouldn’t be much excess). Sprinkle mixture with desired amount of cinnamon and mix well. Be sure that the cinnamon and oil are evenly distributed. Place in a casserole dish and cover with foil. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 45-60 minutes. I typically check the dish at 45 mins. Once the potatoes are fork tender the dish is done.

This is a high carb dish and can be served as a side dish with pork or a dessert around the holidays (good sub for pie because it tastes just like apple pie). This dish is ideal if you have had a heavy training day, had a long run/bike ride etc.

I recently kicked this one up a notch by adding some bacon. I purchased a 1 pound hunk of uncured unsliced bacon from whole foods and cut it into small cubes. I cooked it in a skillet until brown and crisp and let it drain off on some paper towels. At the 45 minute mark in the cooking process above I sprinkled the bacon bits over the top of the dish and let it cook for 15 more minutes. YUMMY!!!

Sun, 14.08.10

Blog, Feed & Water

Eat Clean – Train Smart – Live Easy

This is a mantra we try to live by here at IronWill, and it’s written in that order for a reason.

Nutrition is the single biggest component to your health and longevity, period.

What we put into our bodies affects every cell. Garbage in, trash out. We want to help teach you that eating clean, paleo, primal, etc. does NOT mean boring. There’s lots of flavors, textures, smells, and yumminess to experience.

Have fun with this. Jen whipped it up the other night, and it was fabulous!

Honey Lime Chicken w/ Asian Slaw

honey lime chicken with asian slaw

I came up with this in the moment so I really didn’t measure anything just mixed and tasted until it was good. – Jen


3/4 head of cabbage sliced thin

3-4 carrots grated

1 1/2 Tbls sesame seeds

1 1/2 Tbls of sesame oil

1 tsp of bacon fat

Heat oil and fat in large skillet

Sauté cabbage and carrots in skillet with sesame oil and a little bacon fat (can leave out the bacon fat)

Add salt and sprinkle in sesame seeds and toss/stirring often. I’d say 5-10 mins.

Add dressing (recipe below) and stir and toss to warm dressing.


2 heaping scoops of almond butter

1-2 Tbls of sesame oil

1-2 Tbls of apple cider vinegar

1-2 Tbls of fresh lime juice

1-2 table spoons of sesame seeds

Whisk everything in a bowl taste it before you pour over slaw. Adjust flavors as needed.

Serve warm or cold.


Package of chicken thighs (skin on)

Salt and pepper

Sesame oil

Honey (local raw is best)


Preheat oven to 375

Season both sides of chicken thighs with salt and pepper

Heat oven safe skillet on stove top burner and add 1-2 Tbls of oil to pan (enough to coat and then a little more).

Once oil is hot place chicken thighs skin side down in oil. Fry 5-8 mins in the oil. Once you have a great brown color on the skin and it’s crisping up flip over to skin side up. Fry another 5-8 mins.

Drizzle each thigh with a little honey and put the skillet in the over to finish off cooking for  about 20-25 mins.

Once out of the oven drizzle a little more honey and squeeze some fresh lime juice on top.



Doing hydration right

Feed & Water


Spring is here, the weather is getting warmer and we’re finally going to start sweating again, well as long as the Polar Vortex decides to take a siesta. There’s all types of hype, articles, and superstitions concerning your fluid intake out there. How do you know what to trust and listen to? Between the dangers of dehydration and hypnoatremia what’s a guy or gal supposed to do? Let’s figure out how to figure out our individual needs and then how to take care of them.

Step 1: Find out if you’re hydrated.

The consumption of everything but actual water tends to make it hard for our bodies to find and maintain euvolemia, a homeostasis level of body fluid volume. Sugar drinks (yes even those zero calorie sports drinks), frappuccinos, excessively processed foods, and lack of proper mineral and vitamin levels make our bodies work really hard to maintain a proper level of cellular hydration.

How can you tell if you’re under hydrated? Generally if you urinate 4 or more times a day and the urine is slightly yellow you’re hydrated. Other tests you can conduct are the “pinch test” and the “thumb test”.

pinch test

To perform the Pinch Test “grasp the skin on the back of the hand, lower arm, or abdomen between two fingers so that it is tented up.” Hold “for a few seconds then release”.

The skin should snap rapidly back to it’s normal position The longer it takes to return to normal the more dehydrated you are.

The Thumb Test is much the same as the Pinch, but we’re going to use are leg. While seated, put one ankle on the opposite knee. Then with your forefinger and thumb find your tibia (shin bone). The forefinger should lay on the far side, with the thumb closer to your body as if you were about to pick up your tibia. Slide your hand to about 6-8 inches below your knee and squeeze for a few seconds. Just like the Pinch Test your skin should return to a normal shape and color rapidly.

The Pinch test reveals moderate to severe dehydration, and the Thumb test shows mild to moderate.

Other signs of dehydration are mild headaches, loss of appetite, and lack of energy.

Step 2: Get hydrated.

Now that we know if we’re suffering from dehydration we can fix it. The old adage of 8, 8oz glasses of water a day does nothing to take into account YOUR base needs. A more accurate rule of thumb for daily hydration is 1/2 your body weight (in lbs), in ounces (of water), per day. What this looks like is:

160lbs / 2 = 80lb; 80oz of water, per day is my base line water needs.

130lbs / 2 = 65lbs; 65oz of water, per day is her base line water needs.


What this means is as a guideline if I, as 160lb individual, do nothing to exert myself all day I still need to drink 80oz of water on top of anything else I might drink.

The easiest way to accomplish this is by sipping water all day. I carry a Nalgene bottle with me pretty much every where I go. The 1st thing I do in the morning (well after starting water for my morning coffee) is to top my Nalgene   off and then drink until I’m not thirsty, usually 6-12oz right out of the gate. This get’s your day started with some fresh clean water, and you know that you started with a full 32oz. By carrying the bottle with you, putting it within easy each, and sipping from it all day you can easily track how much your taking in without having to use a lot of energy thinking about.


Step 3: Staying hydrated.

Now that you are hydrated, have your base line consumption, and are feeling good, how do you deal with staying that way?

The best thing, listen to your body. When you feel thirsty sip some water. Not a sports drink. Not water with Mio. Not fruit juice. Not a bunch of artificial crap! Just WATER! Yeah, yeah, I hear it all the time “I just don’t like plain water” “I can’t drink water flavored water” and so on. I get it, I just don’t buy it. There are ways to flavor your water that don’t include a bunch of artificial man made ingredients. Use lemons, limes and cucumber for a quick whole foods approach to to changing it up.

Know your sweat. Perform a sweat test from time to time. This let’s you know how much fluid you’re actually losing. So it can be used to determine not only how much water you need, but what your electrolyte requirements are.

With our sweat test done, we know how much “extra” fluids we need to take in. This is where I can get behind using something other than water. By including beverages with some electrolytes as our sweat replacement we can break up the “monotony of water” without over doing it. Products that I love and get behind are coconut water and NUUN for when I’m traveling. When I’m home, Cleveland-ers you can find it in Heinens, NOOMA is the go to (full disclosure: I am a NOOMA ambassador, but I’m one because they have a great product and are a great company).

Step 4: Not over doing it.

Last but not least, don’t over do it. Our bodies are amazing at performing tasks. Yours will do everything it can do to remain in homeostasis. But if it doesn’t have the proper tools on board it can’t, and will shut down in an attempt to save other, more vital organs.

Hyponatremia occurs when there’s not enough sodium in the system, we loose our homeostasis and can’t properly absorb and process the fluids we take in. It is a real and increasing issue, especially as more and more individuals are out on run courses longer and longer. As our diets clean up and we eat less processed food our sodium intake natural decreases. So don’t be afraid of a little pinch of sea salt on your veggies.

Final thoughts

Make it easy on yourself, we humans have stayed alive for a millennia by listening to our bodies, learn to listen to yours. The simplest ways to start:

  1. Eliminate, or work on eliminating sweet, ingredient filled beverages.
  2. Start your day with 6-12oz of water.
  3. Carry a reusable water bottle around, sip from it regularly.
  4. Eat some quality salt, a pinch goes a long way.
  5. If you exercise (which you should be) perform a sweat test from time to time.


Sweat Test

Feed & Water

The purpose of a sweat test is to determine how much sweat (water & minerals) an individual looses during exercise.

This is a moving target; weather conditions, effort level, and even ones diet leading up to the exercise session will change how much you perspire.

For these reasons you should test often, under different circumstances and strive to replicate anticipated race day/competition conditions.

How to:

  1. Weigh yourself, in the buff, before session. Make note of the weight.
  2. Perform an hour of activity. If racing/competing try to do so under the same conditions.
  3. Immediately strip down to the buff and weigh yourself again.
  4. Subtract post exercise weight from pre exercise weight.
  5. Convert to ounces (multiply by 16).
  6. Add any fluids consumed (in ounces).
  7. The final answer is the amount of fluid lost during that hour of exercise.

Each 16oz of fluid loss also represents an estimated loss of the following mineral amounts.

  • 220mg of Sodium
  • 63mg of Potassium
  • 8mg of Magnesium
  • 16mg of Calcium

Your hydration protocol needs to include replacing both your water and electrolytes.