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4 Questions with Kate Bradley from Leanrunnerbean

Meet Kate Bradley from Leanrunnerbean. Kate is a wife and mother of two twin boys. Kate recently released her book The Modern No-Nonsense Guide to Paleo and I must say that this book is full of great tips on the “how to” of paleo.

Topics include: beginning paleo, living paleo everyday (with great tips on staying on budget), living paleo – unusual situations, interacting in a non-paleo world (with great tips on involving your kids), and building a strong personal paleo core. If you have not visited Leanrunnerbean head on over and check it out. Alison shares lots of great tips and strategies as well as a few recipes too. Please enjoy this little Q and A with Kate of Leanrunnerbean.

1. How long have you been eating Paleo and what prompted you to make a change?

I read The Primal Blueprint in October 2010 and multiple light bulbs went off for me. For the previous four years I’d been studying diet as I sought to manage my own health and my son’s behavioral challenges. I even came across what later became known as “paleo” back in 2006!I’d dismissed it as too “weird” and difficult, but I pursued the whole foods approach and learned to cook. Back then, there was little support such as websites and cookbooks and we waxed and waned but I finally ditched the wheat (I am British and we eat a very wheat-intensive diet) and then came across the Primal Blueprint.

The book crystallized so much of what I’d learned during the previous years and now, finally, there were forums and websites detailing supporting scientific evidence for what I’d intuitively felt for so long. After that, I doubled my efforts for myself and slowly transitioned my family so that, at home, we are almost entirely paleo.

2. What were/are your biggest obstacles?

Sugar! Oh my, that one has been hard for me. I realized that there is such a thing as sugar addiction and I have it! When my kids were little, I’d hoard it and bring it out when they were napping or gone to bed and eat it until I didn’t want any more!

Man, it made me happy. And calm.

Knowing that I had a stash somewhere in the house made me feel safe – that I had an option for some fun if I needed it. And when I did, I didn’t restrict myself. I would inhale it.

I’ve learned that, for me, abstinence is easier than moderation. I simply can’t have two squares of chocolate. I feel deprived and I’d rather not have any at all than to have to spend energy gritting my teeth to exercise self-control (if I have any to spare, that is).I don’t keep a stash of sugar in the house. And if there is occasional sugar, I freeze it in our garage freezer so that it is a pain to get to and defrost.

I’ve now developed good habits and behavioral strategies so that it isn’t a problem but it is a learning process and I go into that in the book.

3. Tell me about your book. And who should buy your book?

Anyone who wants to instill paleo habits solidly into their lives so that living this way is automatic for them, that they don’t have to think about it.I firmly believe that being paleo successfully over the long term is about building skills and, like any skill we want to learn and become expert at, that takes time and practice.

Instead of going full-bore and then hitting the wall when we run out of steam, I suggest that we start slowly, monitoring our behaviors and habits, working out strategies for when we are likely to be tempted to eat non-paleo, and understand that there may be some uncomfortable times where we hit bumps in the road and feel rather hopeless. When we learn a new skill we nearly always hit a point where we want to give up because we think we’re never going to “get it” and going paleo is no different. But we need to understand that is a stage, a phase, we pass through if we keep on learning and practicing until we achieve mastery. This is the premise upon which the book is based and I identify many, many strategies, tips, techniques and ideas in the book that the reader can adopt to help them become an expert at doing paleo well. The idea for the book came from answers to a question I posed on my Paleo/NonPaleo Facebook wall – “What are you struggling with right now?” So really I wrote it to speak to the challenges my readers face on a daily basis. Most of us don’t have too many skills in this area and we often have an array of sabotaging habits. This book is about what to do instead. I call it a book on the “how of paleo.”

4. What advice would you give anyone who is “on the fence” about making a healthier lifestyle change?

Another of my basic tenets for change is that many baby steps cover as much ground as huge leaps. I would suggest people who are considering such a alteration of lifestyle start by making tiny habit changes from whatever point they are at today – maybe one teaspoon less of sugar in their coffee, make dinner simply meat and vegetables (no potatoes/rice/pasta etc.,) or a walk around the block, that kind of thing.

Then, over time, extend these habits little by little, adding planning and preparation skills and the ability to evaluate situations that “go wrong”. An important lesson to learn is that failure is a point of learning and much data can be mined from such circumstances. Failure can be an asset!


Paleo-friendly Coconut Milk Chocolate Ice Cream!

So I have been doing a little experimenting with my ice cream maker and I thought I would share what I have come up with so far. Here it goes!

Melt your favorite dark chocolate (I used 60%) in a sauce pan into 1 can of coconut milk (I have used both Thai Kitchen or Chaokoh and it turned out great). Stir really well while chocolate is melting and remove from heat immediately. Allow it to cool down for a few minutes then pour into the ice cream maker.

Add 1 big tsp. of vanilla and let the ice cream maker do its magic! Mine took about 20 minutes to get to a nice thick soft serve ice cream consistency.

Serve and enjoy! Honestly it is that simple! Your kids will really enjoy helping and watching the ice cream maker go! Here are some pictures of our Coconut Milk ice cream creation night! Next time I promise to actually take a picture of it in the bowl before we eat it! :)