New Years Eve, New York City- 2012.
I slipped on my frighteningly old tennies and scampered across the busy city street – destination: Gold’s Gym. I was staying in New York City, New York for the New Years holiday week and conveniently located just across the way from our chic boutique hotel was a sweat glistening , musty and jam-packed-with-hot-bodies place to work out. I felt so out of place, like a lot of women do, when entering the free weight area of a gym- except the whole gym was the free weight area. The bulging muscles, grunts and intimidating glances in my direction were completely daunting- I pressed on to the reception desk and signed up for a free trial week, the receptionist caring very little about my California residence and travel stories.
As I climbed the stairs to the brightly lit and mirror-rimmed room trimmed with what appeared to be every increment and form of weight a person could possibly lift I suddenly felt encouraged- “I can do this, I read Self magazine!”. The week passed quickly- enamored by the grand Central Park and the sweet sweet Serendipity Cafe, the Frozen Hot Chocolate and whimsical ambiance still sparkling in my mind. Towards the end of the week and just as the New Year’s Celebration was on the verge of beginning I’d determined my goal for the coming year- Lose weight- original huh?
I wasn’t unattractively heavy at this point, just curvy, and if and when I did step on that darned scale at the Herbalife center they told me my BMI put me in the-wait for it- “obese category”- 31, what a magical number to create such a lack of self love. I was determined in the coming year to get “in shape” like the glistening bodies at the Gold’s Gym. I bought a book on women’s body building, borrowed another read from a friend’s husband on Arnold Schwarzenegger and signed up for Jamie Eason’s Live Fit- 12 week weight lifting plan. Jamie Eason wins the gold medal on getting me in shape- 25 lbs later that year I was in beautiful shape, down to a healthy BMI and points beyond points lower in my body fat percentage. I’d worked out nearly every day- doing lots of resistance training in the free weight area of the less intimidating 24 hour fitness, ran about 20 miles a week and focused on centering my meals around fiber rich fruits and vegetables while supplementing my days with the most horrifying, chemical filled ,Walmart-bought Body Fortress vanilla protein powder.
I was suddenly confident in my skin, I felt sexy and powerful and even made one of my long time best friends while doing one of Jamie Eason’s workouts at the gym. This new lifestyle had all sorts of perks. Like many things in my life though- it was a fad, I eventually lost interest with spending 2 hours at the gym every day. As time progressed and the years waged on I’m back at a more womanly figure with less than beefy arms- I’m sure to most men’s approval! What has remained is my interest in supplementation and healthy eating. I use Ground-Based
Superfood protein as a meal replacement twice a day for breakfast and lunch, and have done so for the last two years. I love the rich flavor of the organic salted cocoa powder in the Chocolate flavor and the creamy sweetness in the Vanilla flavor.
Since I’ve used this product for so many years I’ve also gotten fairly creative with applications for it- pancakes, oatmeal, protein bars, popsicles and nooooow rich, glorious, grain free Brownies.
These gems were dense, succulent and full of tastebud-demanding rich chocolate flavor. The recipe is simple and very customizable. Depending on your nutrition goals you could add in peanut butter, white chocolate chips, walnuts, strawberries, cherries or even a different flavor or type of protein!
Comment below with the way you customized the recipe!
- Preheat oven to 350 and line a muffin pain with muffin liners.
- Peel one ripe banana and add into your stand mixer along with one single serving of unsweetened apple sauce, begin to puree at a slow speed.
- Add in the vanilla extract, coconut oil, fine sea salt, cocoa powder, chocolate chips and Ground-Based protein and continue combining at a slow speed.
- Place brownies in oven and bake for 20 -25 minutes or until set.
- The brownies need an hour or so to cool and set as they don’t have any gluten to form a gelatinization process ( what makes a brownie solid when using flour). These set up quicker if cooled at a chilled temperature- refrigerator works best.