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Beer Bulges & Carb Crashes

Fall Football Season for the is in full swing and with the victories and defeats come eating and drinking our feelings.  While it would be absurd to ask any hard core fan to put their health and fitness before the big game, there might be a few answers to preventing the beer belly bulge and the carb crash.  While most of us are unable to go to the stadiums or even tailgate in the parking lot right now many of us are still hosting friends and family get- togethers to celebrate the great feats of these athletes.  So before the party gets started, prepare ahead of time with these easy tips.

1.  Eat breakfast.  Big or small, this is often the most neglected meal of the day and as you may have heard from your mother growing up "breakfast is the most important meal of the day". While we won't say that loud enough for her to hear she was right, we will agree that it jump starts your metabolism and gets the engine burning.  So, make it a quick protein shake with blueberries or some egg whites and an orange.  You are sure to set the stage for a championship victory if you fuel your body before your team hits the field. 

2.  And, while most games don't start until at least after 10am and you've already got your famous chili cooking in the crockpot, now is the chance to take some laps around your neighborhood just like your favorite players are doing to warm up before winning. It doesn't have to be anything long or strenuous but just moving will get the heart pumping, the blood circulating, and the lean fat burning machine revved up.  A great goal would be a 45 minute jog/walk.  With a little more speed than the infamous 1980's mall walkers went, you will achieve the perfect fat burning zone.  Find your target fat burning zone:

220-your age multiplied by 0.7= FAT BURN AWESOMENESS!   Stay in this zone for 45 minutes while your chili is coking and you will be guaranteed to score a touchdown.

Smoky Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili

Orange power: Sweet potatoes are loaded with vitamins A and C, plus fiber, iron, and potassium.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:

261 calories; fat 10g; saturated fat 2g; cholesterol 39mg; fiber 6g; protein 17g; carbohydrates 24g; sodium 633mg; iron 2mg; calcium 59mg.


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 pound ground turkey

  • 1 red onion, chopped (about 2 cups)

  • 2 green bell peppers, seeded and chopped (about 2 cups)

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 Tbsp.)

  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-in. cubes (about 1 1/2 cups)

  • 2 tablespoons chopped canned chipotle pepper in adobo sauce

  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste

  • 1 Belgian white ale (such as Blue Moon)

  • 3 cups unsalted chicken broth

  • 1 low-sodium red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar


Instructions Checklist

  • Step 1

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add turkey and cook, stirring often, until browned, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer turkey to a plate, reserving drippings in Dutch oven.

  • Step 2

Reduce heat to medium. Add onion, bell peppers, garlic, and remaining 1 tablespoon oil to Dutch oven; cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes. Stir in sweet potato, chipotle, and tomato paste; cook, stirring often, for 1 minute.

  • Step 3

Increase heat to high and add ale. Bring to a boil, stirring to loosen browned bits from bottom of Dutch oven. Cook until reduced by half, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in turkey, broth, kidney beans, salt, and paprika; return to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until liquid has slightly reduced and sweet potato is tender, about 30 minutes. Stir in vinegar.

3.  Alright so you are home from your light workout, the chili is cooked,  your friends are on their way with their healthy tailgating meals in hand, and you are ready to sit down and watch the game.  Right?  Well, sort of. 

Instead of laying a friendly monetary wager against your opposing team, how about making it a friendly competition with your friends and family? If your team does any of these one things your friends and family who are rooting for the other team has to do:

- Touchdown: 10 lunges

- Field goal: 5 burpees

- Interception: 10 air squats

- End of every quarter: streak the quad…JUST KIDDING-.  But watching your friends run a light lap around your yard would be a great way to celebrate your team being in the lead.

4. Now that the game is over, you’ve had a wonderful time with your friends and family, we must remember one of the key ingredients to health and fitness success and that is rest and recovery.  It does NOT mean throwing your legs on the recliner and snoozing the afternoon away but rather going for a light walk and then spending 10 minutes stretching while the commentators cover the highlights of the game.  Be sure to drink your water and get a good nights sleep.  If you have successfully achieved these tailgating tips then no matter who won the game you are the champ because your body already thanks you for taking care of it!

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