Raw Turmeric Latte (Vegan)

Hi friends!

It feels good to finally get back to the blog! I took a long hiatus while traveling these past couple of weeks and I’m so ready to be back. Today, I’ll be sharing a a raw turmeric milk recipe :D.

raw-turmeric-milk-vegan

I originally shared this recipe on Brown Girl Magazine but I also want to share a version of the same recipe here under a different name.

This raw turmeric milk tastes just like thandai (a traditional indian beverage) but it’s way more healthy! I was inspired to create this recipe after trying the turmeric milk at Project Juice. I was obsessed with it immediately but I knew I could recreate it at a much lower cost (FYI I talk about my thoughts on the turmeric milk trend here).

Ingredients:

1 cup of almonds, soaked overnight
4 cups of water
5 medjool dates
2-3 cardamom pods, ground
1 tsp of turmeric powder
½ tsp of cinnamon
Dash of black pepper
Pinch of saffron

Instructions:

    1. Place your almonds in a large bowl and fill it with water. Soak them overnight to allow them to sprout. I’ve read that this helps neutralize phytic acid and helps release an enzyme that helps with digestion.
    2. The next morning add your almonds and about a cup of water to your blender and start pulsing. I like to add the water a little at a time to gauge the creaminess of the milk.
    3. Blend the rest of the ingredients while slowly adding more water.
    4. Strain the mixture using a cheese cloth or nut milk bag over a large pot or bowl.
    5. Pour the milk back into the blender to help serve.
    6. Add some ice & garnish with crushed cardamom and a pinch of saffron!

turmeric-milk-blended

You can use the leftover almond meal to make a lighter version of the thandai by adding it back to the blender with more water. Or you can use it to top off your oatmeal, add it to a dessert, or like me, eat it plain.

The turmeric milk should stay good for up to a week refrigerated! It’s so good you have to try it out!

turmeric-latte

raw turmeric latte made with homemade almond milk. Sweetened with dates

POP Pilates Instructor Training

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pop_pilates

I am so thrilled to be an instructor-in-training for POP Pilates! For the last few years I’ve had a dream about becoming a group fitness instructor. I imagined it would be when I was a bit older, with kids, and maybe at a point where I was more “comfortable” with my life.

However, when I heard about the POP Pilates training in the Bay Area I knew it was a sign for me to take this chance. What’s the point of waiting for something if it excites me now?

POP pilates is a format that takes traditional mat pilates to the next level by choreographing all moves to the beat of music. It was designed by the creator of Blogilates, Cassey Ho!

I discovered POP Pilates through Cassey’s YouTube videos about four years ago when I began my fitness journey. I remember days in my dorm room where I would be jumping around my mat and listening to Cassey’s voice to motivate me.

It used to be only Cassey & I on the mat. Now, I’m excited to bring it to a whole community of old & new POPsters.

On a serious note, it was extremely inspiring being in a room of women who love teaching fitness and who truly believe in the message of POP Pilates. The message essentially conveys that fitness is supposed to be fun, inclusive, and help both your body & mind. I met some amazing people who I know I’ll be good friends with in the future.

So what’s next? Well in the next two months I need to learn all the choreography so I can tape my video evaluation where I’ll be teaching a group of people! If I pass, I can officially start teaching. Finding a place to teach will be another challenge but luckily a lot of 24 hr fitness clubs actually have POP Pilates classes.

How am I feeling about this? Scared. Nervous. Excited. But most of all inspired! I have a new level of respect for fitness requires. The job not only requires a certain level of physical fitness and knowledge, but also it asks for genuine passion & personality.

I’ll make sure to keep you all updated on what’s next! And if you anyone want a free workout in the next couple of months let me know and we will make it happen :).

Coconut Cream Chia Seed Pudding (Dairy-Free)

Coconut Cream Chia Seed Pudding_FINAL

The chia seed pudding trend has been going strong for the past couple of years, but have you guys tried it with dairy-free coconut cream?

GAME CHANGER.

I’ve recently became obsessed with coconut cream – I want to put it on everything and eat it by the spoon. It’s so rich but still nutritious – I love it.

This chia seed pudding makes a great healthy dessert option. The recipe requires just a little bit of prep, but it’s super simple to follow. Trust me, I’m not one to create complicated recipes.

Serving Size: 4
Prep Time: 10 mins to prepare, 8 hours to chill 

Ingredients

Chia seed pudding:
1 cup almond milk (sweetened or unsweetened)
1 cup coconut milk, unsweetened
1/2 cup chia seeds
1 tsp of raw honey or maple syrup

Coconut cream:
1 can of coconut milk
1 tsp of honey or maple syrup – optional
Sprinkles & mint to garnish -optional

ChiaSeed_Pudding

Directions:

For the chia seed pudding:

In a medium bowl or glass container, stir together almond milk, coconut milk and chia seeds. Cover with plastic wrap or lid and let it chill in the refrigerator for at least three hours. But since I’m making the coconut cream too, I let it chill overnight. Before serving, stir pudding again.

For the coconut cream:

Before we get into how to make coconut cream, make sure you get the right coconut milk. Don’t get the one in the refrigeration section with the almond milk, and other dairy products but rather, get a full fat coconut milk that you use to cook.

I’ve heard some brands of coconut milk whip better than others but i honestly I haven’t experimented much. I found this helpful guide on which coconut brands are the best for coconut cream.

Refrigerate the can of coconut milk overnight. In the morning, open the can and scoop out the solid part (the coconut cream) into a large bowl. Discard the remaining liquid portion.

Using an electric mixer, add the honey/maple syrup if you’d like and whip the coconut cream until the texture is smoothy and creamy. I tried using a hand beater and it worked, but an electric mixer would yield better results.

Top the chia seed pudding with the coconut cream! You can refrigerate and save for later but the coconut cream will no longer be a whipped texture. If you let it out in room temperature though for a few minutes, it softens up a bit.

Enjoy 🙂

coconut cream chia seed_pinterest

My First 5K and 10K with Sevathon

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running-crissy-fields

When I began college, I begrudgingly started running in attempt to avoid the Freshman 15. It really didn’t like it but I knew I needed to do something to stay fit.

Only when I began racing did I find my love for running.

My first race was a 5k at the Sevathon walkathon/race in July 2010. The race was hosted by the Indian Community Center to enable nonprofits in our community to deliver their message and further their causes.

My mom persuaded me to try the 5K with her and her friends to support a few of the nonprofits. I figured that if my mom could do it, I could too – right?

So there I was at a race with my mom and a bunch of aunties (whom I love dearly by the way). At this point, I had never run 3 miles straight so a 5K felt like a huge deal. I was nervous but I gave it my all and I ended up finishing first in my division!

Two years later I raced my first 10K at Sevathon. I chose Sevathon because I wanted to be in a supportive, encouraging environment for this new challenge. So there I was again with my mom, her friends, and an incredibly supportive South Asian community.

Since then I’ve raced several 5Ks, 10Ks, and half-marathon but Sevathon is where it all really started. It’s scary to think that if it weren’t for my mom and the Indian community, I may have never convinced myself to do a race at all!

Thank you Sevathon for putting on such an amazing event and for inspiring people like me to become passionate runners.

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P.S. There is still time to register for this year’s race! It’ll take place on June 26th in Downtown San Jose. If you’re interested, you can actually sign-up here! I’m planning on signing-up for the 5K :).

*This post is not sponsored. I wanted to genuinely to write about how Sevathon has positively influenced me 🙂

Why I created A New Blog: Citrus & Gold

Why I created CitrusGold

Hello new friends and old friends! Welcome to my new blog: Citrus & Gold. For those that know me I’ve been blogging on the side for a few years but I’ve never put as much energy into it until now. I wanted to share with you why I was motivated to start from scratch to create something completely new. I’ve shared a version of this post on my old blog, but if you hadn’t had a chance to read, here it is:

I started blogging in college to claim a little piece of the internet. You know, to have something of my own where I could freely share my thoughts. I didn’t really have a focus when I first started to blog so I wrote about whatever piqued my interest. Slowly but surely, I saw a trend: I began sharing healthy recipes, interviewing inspiring people, and writing posts related to running/ working out. The more time I invested in blogging, the more I realized I focus on the particular niche of health & fitness.

Which is why I started Citrus & Gold.

I want to inspire people to be bolder, healthier, and happier.

I’ve learned a lot about who I am as a person by focusing my energy towards my health. When I started paying more attention to my well-being, I realized that a lot of the “new habits” I was picking up were actually things my mom tried to teach me at a young age.

For example, she tried to convince me about benefits of yoga & breathing exercises; she also made me drink turmeric milk when I was sick; and she would often suggest using natural products for skincare. All of the tips & tricks she tried to teach me were rooted in South Asian culture. Though all of these may be trendy now, I want to share a perspective that brings it all close to home.

I’m excited start a new phase of my blogging “career”. The whole process definitely didn’t happen overnight: I’ve been working on planning & creating the blog little by little these past 3 months and I have big dreams for this blog!

I truly appreciate your support and would love if you could be part of the community:

1. Follow me on instagram at @citrusandgold for the latest update.
2. Subscribe here to receive a curated monthly newsletter (may change it to bi-weekly!).
3. Tell me what health & fitness topics you’d like to hear more about by asking me here or on social media!

Race Recap: Bay to Breakers 2016

bay-to-breakers-2016-selfie

I plan on doing many race recaps in the near future & I wanted to start the series off with a very unique race: Bay to Breakers. Most people actually forget about the “race” portion of Bay to Breakers.

It’s a day where people dress up in costume, drink in the streets, and party as if they were back in college.

My boyfriend and I decided to run and then join in on the festivities :).

Bay to Breakers is a 12k run that’s been taking place for over 100 years (started in 1912 as a way to boost morale after the 1906 earthquake). The race starts in downtown near the embarcadero and finishes at the end of Golden Gate Park. As for the course, it’s relatively flat/downhill for San Francisco except for a huge hill at mile 2 known as the “Hayes Hill” .

The start line is packed with all kinds of runners/participants, I don’t even know where to start. You can tell people really put time into some of the costumes & some looked like they were doing this for decades. I was even surprised to see families with little kids ready for the event.

I also don’t understand the tradition of throwing tortillas in the air at the start line but I thoroughly enjoyed it.

runner-throwing-tortilla

We also spotted a group of centipede runners.

centipede-runners-bay-to-breakers

Our costume was sort of a last minute decision – we were a Lyft line. We threw on a couple of mini-lyft moustaches, pinned a balloon on our head to symbolize a pin drop, and even had rope to symbolize the line.

Yes, I did run a 12k with a balloon on my head.

I was super excited to run B2B but was in no means trying to race it. The first a couple of miles are filled with people drinking, walking, and having a good time. Once you pass the Pan Handle the crowd starts to clear up and it feels like a real race.

We ended up walking/running the race, taking pictures along the way and trying to avoid all the naked-people.

bay-to-breakers-runners

Even though I didn’t feel like I seriously raced B2B, I was stoked to get my medal at the end to add to my collection!