Szechuan Stir Fry

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Contest prep this time around is going amazingly well! I’m making sure that I have plenty of lead time so I don’t have to panic last minute or rush to lean out, but even with the extra time it seems as though my body is responding much better than before.

My calories are still incredibly high and I’m losing the expected 1/2 to 1 pound of fat a week. Much much higher calories than last round and no calorie or carb cycling needed yet. In fact, I’m now eating more than most weight loss plans I’ve seen! The best part is that I’m also doing next to nothing in cardio. As in less than 45 minutes PER WEEK.

For someone who has very little free time, this is a freaking dream. Last time I had daily cardio along with my workouts. I know the leaner I get the more my body will attempt to resist dropping fat. Cardio will come for sure, but I’m 1.5 pounds over last contest weight and miles ahead of the game this time.

For those of you who haven’t been in prep, weird things start to happen when you deprive your body of things like fat stores. Your brain relies on the fat on your body more than you realize and it starts to function a bit more slowly when you lose the extras. This is difficult for those of us whose brain typically fires at 150 witty percent.

If you aren’t prepared for it, it can be upsetting. I remember last prep trying to help The Kid with her homework and being unable to remember how to multiply. In a freak out moment, I texted Trainer Man that I was having a stroke or aneurysm and he filled me in that it was “normal.”

This time I’m just laughing it off. It’s also been responsible for some new accidental personal records in the gym. I realized that the reason I struggled through reps one day was because I put 10 pound plates on the bar instead of 5 pounds. I can no longer be trusted to add in 5 and 10 increments. 😉

But almost no cardio, stuffing myself with yummy calories, and eating things like szechuan stir fry. I’ll take it any day since my fuzzy brain is just temporary.

Szechuan Stir Fry  Szechuan Stir Fry

  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 2 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp sambal oelek (ground chili paste)
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, sliced into cubes
  • 1 red pepper, cut into strips
  • 1/2 cup onion, sliced
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 3/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 Tbsp PB2 or other powdered peanut butter

Mix the broth, soy sauce, vinegar, sambal oelek, and cornstarch in a small bowl and set aside. Heat a skillet over medium high heat and spray with non-stick spray. Add the chicken pieces and stir fry for about 3 minutes until slightly browned. Stir often (cuz it’s stir fry, right?).

Push the chicken to one side and add the pepper strips, onion, and garlic. Stir fry for 2 – 3 minutes and sprinkle with the ginger. Stir the sauce mixture to combine since it will probably separate while sitting, and pour over the chicken and veggies. Cook until the chicken is done and the sauce thickens.

Remove from heat and serve with rice, if desired. Sprinkle each serving with 1 1/2 tsp of PB2 before serving. Makes 4 servings at approximately 198 calories each plus the calories from the rice if you use it. I did. I love rice and stir fry isn’t the same rice-less.

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