Smoothie Saturday || The Breakfast Dream

Who doesn’t love Honey Nut Cheerios? (No, this is not a paid sponsorship)  Well, here is a new way to enjoy this classic breakfast item! Coach Dylan has whipped up another smoothie recipe featuring a few of our childhood breakfast favorites! You could easily throw in a scoop of your favorite protein powder and start your day strong!

The Breakfast Dream (Recipe is for one 20oz. smoothie)

3 Good Size Strawberries
1/4 Cup Blueberries
1 Banana
1/4 Cup Oatmeal
1 Heaping Tablespoon Honey Nut Cheerios
1/4 Cup Almond Milk
1/2 Tablespoon Turbinado
1 Raw Egg

Kitchen Adventures || Ranch Turkey Burgers & Zeal

Hi Crew,

It’s been a minute since I’ve done a Kitchen Adventures post. Honestly… it just hasn’t been important. There are so many bigger things happening both for me personally and in the world that have needed the attention and a voice in this time and recipes from a novice home chef took a back seat.

Posting this week does not mean that those things are any less important, but I’ve decided to try to re-establish some regularity with my weekly schedule for my own mental health and I also think this is a good opportunity to start using these posts to spread a little more love. I’m going to start sharing the art, small businesses, passions, etc of my friends each week in addition to the recipes in hopes that I can support people in a bigger way. I tend to overstretch myself which means I don’t always have the time or energy to commit myself to everything, but I can definitely share and spread the word…

Cooking used to stress me the heck out. I burned everything. Nothing was edible… Now, I’m actually pretty good… That didn’t happen overnight though. Time, practice, attention, and dedication were just a few of the things it took for me to get to where I could not only make things that were safe to eat (you think I’m joking) but also be able to prep and feed both myself and Tim through the week.

Now, I find some peace in cooking. Meal prepping and cooking are two different things to me. Meal prepping is making sure we have healthy options to sustain us through the week. Cooking.. truly focusing on the meal I’m making is therapeutic. I can let go of everything else for just a little bit and there is just something about sharing food with the people I care about that is really special to me.

So, before we get to the recipe – I want to share my friend Zakiya’s new business. She’s a beautiful, strong, sassy, and FAITHFUL woman at my church and she makes faith based apparel and accessories. Zakiya has battled MS and 10% of the proceeds of her sales go to assistance for MS patients. I love the name she chose for her company so much. It fits her, her BEAUTIFUL family, and her passion for God perfectly. Check out her site HERE and her FB page HERE.





Ok, so this week’s recipe is super simple and you can whip it up in no time, so make a quick HEB order and grab these ingredients for dinner tonight!


INGREDIENTS – this should make about 6 burgers

2 lbs ground turkey (93% – trust me!)
1 package ranch seasoning mix (you can find this in the aisle with the ranch dressing usually)
1/3 cup grated cheddar
1 red bell pepper – petit diced
4 green onions – sliced thin
*Optional – pinch of cayenne

Olive oil to cook

To top – fresh tomato, lettuce, pickle, avocado, crisp bacon, red onion, wheat bun, cheese, etc…. Whatever you usually like!


Mix the ground turkey, ranch, bell pepper, green onions, cheese & cayenne if you’re using it. Form into patties and chill in the refrigerator for about 10-15 minutes. To cook, either light up the grill and cook to desired temp or heat a skillet with about a tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat. Cook patties for 4-5 minutes on each side or until desired doneness.

That’s it! Load up your burger with all your favorite toppings and enjoy!

Prehab/Rehab for The Hip || Coach Mark

Our hips play a huge role in our ability to move effectively and efficiently, especially with bigger/gross movements. If you think about it, most of our power and drive from the movements we perform stem from the hips. Therefore, if we’re dealing with any restrictions, they should be dealt with asap! To break it down into 4 steps, we should address: 


1) Mobility – moving the joint through its range of motion

2) Foam roll – glutes, quads, IT band, adductors (inside part of the legs)

3) Stretch – into end range positions

4) Posterior-chain activation – to lock in and secure our new found range of motion


Below, I’ve listed and described a few movements for mobility and stretching that may help with stiffness and/or restrictions. Again, after performing these movements it’s always best to lock in your new range of motion with posterior chain activation exercises like squats or deadlifts. As always, stay swole and flexy!



  • 10 hip rotations (CARs – controlled articular rotations)


    • Slower is better here
    • Begin on your hands and knees. Place your hands directly under your shoulders and your knees directly under your hips
    • Raise your knee out to the side, reaching as far as you can, while not allowing too much rotation to occur at the pelvis (pause there for a second or two)
    • Slowly begin to kick behind you, ending with a leg outstretched behind you
    • Repeat


  • 30 sec per side pigeon stretch


    • With the right leg in front and the left behind you, rest your front/right leg in a 90 degree position on the floor
    • Slide your left leg back and point your toes, your heel is pointing up to the ceiling
    • Scissor your hips together, by drawing your legs in towards each other
    • Focus on erecting the spine by opening your chest
    • If you are able, walk your hands forward and lean forward for a deeper stretch
    • Hold for 30-45 seconds or as tolerated



  • 10 per side half kneeling hip flexor stretch


    • Starting in a lunge position, rotate/scoop the hips in an upward motion (posterior pelvic tilt)
    • A stretch should be felt on the front side of the hips (hip flexors)
    • Hold the end range position for 30-45 seconds, shooting for at least 3 sets


May Athlete of The Month || Graham Hamilton!!

Each month we spotlight a different CFA athlete who stands out and shows just how awesome they are. What is it that makes up an Athlete of the Month? It may not be the person that finishes the fastest, Rx’s every WOD, or gets a PR every time they walk in the gym. Although we love and celebrate when those things happen, the Athlete of the Month is made up of much more than physical ability. This person shows up, gives their best every time, and then gives a little more. They are hungry to learn and always ready to do the work. They support their fellow classmates and encourage them to reach their goals. This athlete embodies what we believe the CrossFit Austin Community should be about.

Our May Athlete of the Month is Graham Hamilton! Graham is one of our newest Austin Weightlifting family members! From day 1, Graham has been a dedicated student! He is hungry for growth and the coaches certainly notice how hard he works in class! Not only was he killing it before the mandates, but he’s been majorly consistent getting on zoom sessions to continue that growth. He got creative and set himself up with a home platform that fits him perfectly! Even in less than ideal conditions, he’s continued to build. Graham, we are honored to have you as our May Athlete of the Month and as an awesome part of this team. Thanks for your all your hard work and we look forward to seeing all you accomplish in the years to come! Congratulations!


State your Name and/or Nickname please:
Graham Hamilton or “Grahamilton”.

Words to live by?
Do the job nobody wants to do, when nobody’s looking.
What is your fitness background?
My fitness background is minimal. I was active in skateboarding and sports when I was younger but around the time my daughter was born (2014) I fell into a slump where I wasn’t really doing anything active. Around summer of 2017 I decided I needed to do something about it and got back in the gym. Since then I’ve tried a myriad of things from CrossFit to hot yoga to spin classes to jiu jitsu. I’ve trained at big box gyms and the Y and even fancy places like Onnit and I can honestly say CFA is the best environment i’ve encountered thus far.
How long have you been Weightlifting?
This time at CFA has been my first foray into weightlifting so I guess it’s been just around 4 months.
Take us back to your first day of training with us… How did you feel? How do you compare it to workouts today?
Coach Dylan made me feel so welcome on my first day and honestly that’s stayed consistent. I’d say the biggest difference between then and now is I already know a million times more about weightlifting than I did on that day. It was huge mystery to me when I first walked through the door.


What’s your favorite part of CrossFit Austin/Austin Weightlifting?My favorite part about CFA is the down to earth/family vibes. It feels like a real tight knit, no bs, neighborhood gym but with a LOT of knowledgable people which I love. The community aspect I guess.


Current Training Goals/PRs?
I’m still such a newbie at weightlifting my main goals are to keep perfecting my technique, increasing my mobility, and adding weight of course. I’d love to be able to snatch my bodyweight by the end of the year but I might have delusions of grandeur haha.


What advice do you have for folks just starting out?
Even though I’m new to weightlifting this isn’t my first time being new at something. My advice to anyone starting anything new would be to listen to the folks who’ve been in your shoes. If someone who’s walked the path you’re trying to walk gives you advice, trust that they know what they’re talking about and remember you’re here to learn.

Things look a little different right now, how are you staying focused in your training and in your life during this time?
I wish I was able to workout more, but I have been proud at my level of focus during this weird time. I stay focused by treating training like medicine. Even if it’s only 2 days a week when I wish it could be 4 or 5, I need it to feel my best/keep my body and mind functioning at the level I’ve come to prefer.

What is your cheat meal go to?
Go to cheat meals/guilty pleasures would be anything involving queso, fried calamari, or Dominos thin crust pepperoni pizza haha.
How do you use your fitness outside of the gym?
I use my fitness outside of the gym for keeping up with my 5 year old daughter, Pearl (they get SO fast so quick!) I also enjoy mountain biking and I have a side-gig painting murals which takes it out of you as well!
Tell us about a moment you felt most proud of yourself during a workout.
Recently during an at home workout I found I was able to snatch my previous PR very easily just kind of testing the waters after finishing the day’s workout. Even though that previous PR was low since I was so new when I set it, I still felt proud that I was definitely progressing.
What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced in your fitness journey?
By far the biggest challenge I’ve faced in my fitness journey thus far  has been a reoccurring back issue that got especially aggravated from jiu jitsu. So much sothat I had to give it up for now. Waiting to recover and having to find ways to work around it was difficult. Part of the reason I got into weightlifting was to strengthen my back and core and so far I think it’s helping!
If you could create a workout and name it for yourself, what would it be?
If I could create and name a workout it’d be called “The Painter” and would involve lots of climbing up and down ladders, hauling paint cans around, and overhead mobility haha. Oh and don’t forget squatting!
What keeps you going on the days you don’t feel like it?
What keeps me going on the days I don’t feel like is that “fitness as medicine” principle I mentioned before. I know what it’s like to take extended breaks and it’s so much harder to get in the groove compared to when you stay consistent. The more I do it, the easier it is, and I like when things that are good for me feel easy haha! So that makes me wanna keep it up. Plus, I always feel better after.What are your hobbies, interests and/or talents outside of training?

Hobbies outside of training are painting and biking as I mentioned before. I also love traveling, camping and anything outdoors, hiking and swimming with my girlfriend and our Goldendoodle Patsy. I also enjoy cooking and I still skateboard sometimes too!

Tell us something we don’t know about you…Something you may not know about me are I’m a native Austinite raised in South Austin and I’ve been sober for over 7 years.
Leave the fine folks of CrossFit Austin/Austin Weightlifting with some parting words…
Thanks so much to everyone at CFA for being so welcoming and friendly. The atmosphere in the gym really has made all the difference for me. I feel very humbled to be AOM and feel like I have some big shoes to fill, but I promise to continue showing up. I truly believe taking accountability for ourselves and attempting to create changes individually is the best way to encourage positive change in the world at large. Thanks y’all!

Smoothie Saturday || Chocolate Sunbutter Dream

Who likes Reese’s?? Well… this isn’t exactly the same, but if you’re a fan of that flavor profile, you’ll like this! Don’t let the spinach fool you guys. You won’t even taste it, but you WILL get all the goodies in it. You can use any chocolate protein you have. If you don’t have chocolate protein, use something like vanilla or coconut and throw in a 1-2 teaspoons of cocoa powder. This one is almost dessert! Enjoy!



2 Scoops chocolate protein of your choice
2 TBSP Sun butter (almond, peanut, etc… whatever you like)
1 Banana
1 TBSP Coconut Oil
1 Cup fresh spinach
1 Cup fresh oats
1 TBSP Chia Seeds
Milk of choice – I like coconut milk
Handful of ice cubes for texture
*1/2 cup of coffee



As a rule, it’s good to get a little liquid in first so the protein powder doesn’t stick, but otherwise drop all that good stuff in and blend it up!

Prehab/Rehab for The Ankles || Coach Mark

Ankles, ankles, ankles! I cannot emphasize enough the importance of ankle mobility. Think about it, our feet and ankles are the foundation on which we perform 90% of movements.Whether that’s in a CF gym or simply walking around our homes/communities. Take a simple movement like the squat, for example. If we lack appropriate ankle dorsiflexion (our ability to bend forward at the ankle joint), it throws off the entire movement system. We may begin to compensate by exaggerating hip flexion which in turn, creates unwanted torque (due to a greater moment arm) in our low back. The image shown demonstrates an individual with poor ankle dorsiflexion (stick figure on the left), and another who demonstrates appropriate ankle mobility (stick figure on the right). Below are a few exercises to help us improve our ankle mobility and ultimately, our performance.







  • Soft tissue/Foam roll:
      • Gastrocs, anterior tibialis, plantar surface of foot
      • Start your session off with some foam rolling of the calves (Gastrocs), soft tissue near the shins (anterior tibialis), and the underside of the foot with a hard ball (plantar surface of foot)
      • Use longer strides vs shorter to maximize the movement of fluids into and out of the targeted tissue(s)




  • Goblet squat stretch

      • 2 sets of 30 sec hold
      • Holding a weight, place elbows on knees in the bottom position to force knees out (deeper stretch) 
      • You can also lean towards either side to really focus on one ankle at a time
      • Keep the heels down!!






  • Box/chair ankle stretch
    • 2 sets (per side) of 10 ankle pumps
    • Using a stool/chair/box, prop one foot up while placing your other leg in a lunge position
    • Perform 10 ankles pumps, taking the ankle to end range of motion (or until the heel starts popping up)
    • You may also hold at end range of motion for 20-30 seconds to continue stretching the gastrocs 
    • Place a weight on top of the knee to use as leverage when moving into the deeper positions

Kitchen Adventures || The best “frozen dinner” I’ve ever had…

Believe it or not… working from home has had us working longer, harder hours than ever. To the point that it’s been hard to find time to prep and cook like I was before… Enter: Freezer Meals. Game changer guys!  One day, I batched up about 7 different freezer meals. Most of them yield 4-6 servings so for each of us that’s 2-3 meals worth. I was a little concerned because I’m one who tastes and adjusts as I cook and by going this route, there was no tasting until it was done. I did adjust slightly once it was done, but I was pretty dang proud for myself for how good this tasted right out of the bag!

That was the best part too… It took maybe 5 minutes to put this together in a bag and all I had to do when I was ready to cook it was dump it in the instant pot. You will need the larger 2 gallon freezer bags for this OR divide it into (2) 1 gal. bags.

I’m going to include instructions for both the instant pot and the crockpot. The only other step for this would be to make the rice if you’re using it. (I suggest it, but you know how your body responds to it).

Anyway, try this out and tell me it’s not the best dang frozen meal you’ve eaten! 😉

Sausage and Chicken Gumbo

12 oz  Andouille Sausage
2 Large Chicken Breasts
16 oz  Frozen Okra
1 red bell pepper – diced
1 medium yellow onion – diced
3-4 cloves garlic – minced
28 oz can of petit diced tomatoes – include the juice
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp Cajun Seasoning
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 dashes tabasco or hot sauce (leave out if you prefer mild)

*Optional, but HIGHLY recommended 🙂
serve on top of white rice

*Add gumbo file’ powder – add about a tbsp once it’s done


Label a 2 gallon (or 2 1 gal.) freezer bags with the date, the name of the recipe, and the cooking instruction. Add all ingredients (except rice and file) to the bag, seal it trying to get as much air as possible out of it and lay it flat in the freezer.

If you want to cook it immediately, go for it using the instructions below.

For instant pot-
From frozen, add the contents to the instant pot. You may have to thaw slightly and break it into chunks. Add 1/4 cup water. Cook for 12 minutes at high pressure then allow 10 minutes for natural release.

If cooking fresh, cook for 10 minutes at high pressure, then allow 10 minutes for natural release.

Once it’s done, shred the chicken, add the file powder and eat up!

For crock pot –
From frozen, add the contents to the crock pot. Again, you may have to thaw slightly and break it into chunks. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or low 5-6hours.

From fresh, cook on high for 3 hours or low 4-5 hours.

Once it’s done, shred the chicken, add the file powder and eat up!