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Talking, Working Out, and Cooking with Bob Harper

I had the privilege of being invited to a private event with only about 15 guests that allowed me to attend a Workout and Cookout with Bob Harper.  The event took place yesterday in Santa Monica at the beautiful Hotel Casa Del Mar.  The event was hosted by Anthem/Blue Cross in order to raise awareness about preventative health.  I have to give mad props to Anthem for doing something like this.  Most folks don't have a very positive opinion on health insurance companies.  Normally, we think they just want our money and don't really care about our health.  I guess I was wrong.  The President of Anthem was there and she truly poured her heart out about how important it is for this company to really spread the word on taking care of oneself to avoid crazy medical costs.  It was very exciting to hear and see, and that was one of the reasons they decided to team up with The Biggest Loser's, Bob Harper.  They encouraged everyone to find out their Health Footprint Score, which you can do right here.

Bob Harper and Me
I enjoyed it but I think my
husband felt different.  ;-)
The first part of the morning was Bob talking about why he is passionate about preventative health and how it was a no brainer for him to team up with Anthem.  Then we all went outside in back of the hotel to the sandy beautiful beaches of Santa Monica for a little buddy workout.  I thought he was going to kill us like they do on The Biggest Loser.  Luckily he was much nicer to us and the buddy bodyweight workout was actually pretty creative and fun.  My legs are a bit sore today!  I may have to implement a few of the new methods he utilized.  He definitely knows how to think outside of the box.  All of the exercises were safely done and the only portion of the workout that was painful were the long hold half squats.  I thought my legs were going to fail on me.  I never train this way, but thought I'd go along with the class like a good student.  It's nice to be a student from time to time and not always the teacher.  Glad I did!  Here is Bob, using me as his partner, showing the group an exercise.  My job was to bridge 10 or so times, then abduct my legs in to his legs, while my partner squeezes/adducts his legs in to mine.  Good for those who enjoy that type of thing.  I used my strong hip power that I've developed with kettlebells and Bob was having a VERY hard time adducting his legs with the resistance I was giving him.  Bob said surprisingly, "WOW you are REALLY STRONG!  She is REALLY STRONG!"  I said one word, "Kettlebells," and smiled.  I heard Ben in the background saying, "Yes she is!"

Then Ben had a really fun time putting his foot on my upper back as I was doing a plank.   I think he leaned on me extra hard to try and tell me something, of course I wouldn't budge for anything!  Bob encouraged Ben to not go easy on me either!


If that wasn't enough of a thrill, after our workout we went back inside the hotel and partnered up at cooking stations to make the most delicious stir fry that I have ever had.  I'm not kidding you!  This was Bob's recipe and we did it all together.  I gotta hand it to him.  He's got some good skills.   Bob had the option for those who wanted chicken or tempeh.  I was able to have a beautiful vegan stir fry.  Bob was vegan for 4 years, but recently had cravings for eggs.  He decided to act on what his body was telling him to do, which I don't see anything wrong with.  Unfortunately many vegan purists gave him a lot of anguish for eating eggs.  To come to his defense, I don't agree with those that feel the need to be negative or so stuck on labels.  As a person who ate vegan for 5 months, not that long in the scheme of things, I just added back in some eggs since my body told me, I don't feel that I need to hide that.  I am all for animal rights, but a person who has been classified as a vegan, who chooses to one day eat a piece of fish or an egg, should not be looked down upon.  It's a personal preference and you have to respect everyones choices and needs.  Here is the recipe.  I plan on making this again very soon!

Cooking away!  I love being in control of my own food. 

Bob Harper's Healthy Stir Fry recipe  (Serves 3-4)

At least 1 lb of vegetables: (broccoli, fresh mushrooms, carrots, baby corn, asparagus, snow peas, jicama or water chestnuts, bean sprouts)
1/4 cup raw cashews
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 package tempeh or optional 1lb skinless chicken breast (I will probably not use either or add seeds)
6-10 shitake mushrooms
3 garlic cloves
2 Tbs diced jalapenos
1 tsp red pepper flakes
2 Tbs fresh lime juice (incredible)
1 Tbs Bragg liquid aminos (I will use wheat free Tamari)

Stir Fry plus a bonus of Kale and Eggplant

After we cooked, it was time to talk.  Most of the group asked him different questions about nutrition, fitness, and how to lose those last 10 pounds.  He said losing those last 10 pounds are the hardest part for everyone.  I tell my clients the same thing.  Losing the weight is not the hardest part.  It's sustaining it and keeping it off that's the hardest part.  He discussed how most people are able to work towards a goal, but once you get there it's very easy to lose sight of things.  The key to having a healthy weight and keeping it off is to make it a habit.  Not just a goal.  That is why I personally love to challenge myself with strength goals.  It keeps me practicing and moving to achieve small goals.  Losing weight is just not enough to keep me excited.  It's the entire picture of health and longevity.  Having a nice physique is just a great by-product of the healthy foods and lifestyle.

I had a quick opportunity to chat with Bob about kettlebells.  He was telling me in this picture how much he LOVES Pavel.  I asked him if he'd consider coming to the RKC to get certified.  He seemed very excited and told me that he was all for it! 

I then proceeded to tell him that for part of the RKC test he would need to be able to snatch a 53lb kettlebell 100 times in less than 5 minutes.  He reacted a bit surprised and joked saying it would be, "no problem."   I told him that I'd help him get there.  ;-)   

 With Bob being on one of the most watched TV shows in the nation,  it is good to know that he uses the  influence he has on people in a positive way.  He really just wants to help people change their lives to become healthier.  Despite all the commercials for cereals such as Fiber One or products that are filled with artificial sweeteners it's comforting to know that he doesn't seem to believe in any of them.  He doesn't even like soy, however, his one vice is a Soy Cappuccino.  Coffee and a touch of soy milk is the one thing he can't give up!  I can understand that.  He said Jillian Michaels has her chocolate stash and would kill anyone who touches it.  We are all human and need little treats from time to time, especially when giving up so many other things.  All in all it was a very fun day.  I look forward to many more adventures!


this is awesome! what a fun opportunity!
Anonymous said…
What a cool experience! I enjoyed reading about your day, and I'm going to try the recipe for sure.
Anonymous said…
How cool! I enjoyed reading about your day, and hearing something positive about healthcare.
Boris said…
Did you teach Bob how to do a get-up? ;)
Gabby Eborall said…
I've been waiting for someone in the RKC to get a hold of Bob or Jillian. I couldn't be happier knowing it was you! Hopefully he will follow through and meet with you (as I did once upon a time) to get some instruction and get his RKC. Looks like you had a great time Lauren.
Zorbs said…
You should have shown Bob how to do proper Turkish getups.
ThAt was a gr8 post , Lauren! I love the bridge buddy exercise... I may use that in my yoga classes!I didn't know you were exploring a vegan lifestyle.yet another reason to admire u!
Candy said…
Sounds like you had a great time! I am eager to try the recipe it looks yummy. Thank you for sharing this I enjoyed reading it!
Anonymous said…
LIEK! LIKE! LIKE!! How FUN!! Yaay!!!
Lauren Brooks said…
Robin and Read Headed Racer,, It was a very cool experience. I look forward to making the recipe as well too.

Gabby, Thank you!! Time will only tell. Hopefully he will take some time after he finishes filming the Biggest Loser season and does the RKC.

Zorbs, We didn't have much time for that, otherwise would have loved too!

Emily, Yes I explored and now I have added eggs back in from time to time.

Thanks everyone!!!
Anonymous said…
Great post, Lauren. I also hope that Bob AND Jillian will seek instruction from you or another RKC. Those videos they release trouble me (bad form, etc.); they just seem to be primarily commercially driven, not actually made to help anyone except the people who are producing them...

One question: What's the problem with soy? I've heard many doctors advise it for heart health, especially for women. Please respond.

barbara shaffer said…
What a great day! And I loved the part about you being so strong!! Recipe looks good too. I am going to try it!
A. Barbara
barbara shaffer said…
What a great day! Ineresting and FUN!! I loved the part about how strong you are!!! The recipe looks good too - I am going to try it! A. Barbara

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