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Chat with Laura Bruner from Radical Roots

Laura Bruner, CNC CF-L3

Laura Bruner, CNC CF-L3

In this installation of Nutrish November, we're tackling the topic of life balance. We all know and have heard this saying a million times: abs are made in the kitchen. I personally never liked this analogy because it's a simplified way to explain a really complex subject. "Eating well" can mean so many things to so many people. As I have recently told my nutrition clients, what works for me will certainly not work for you; our bodies are completely different! And how extreme do we go to get the results we want?

Luckily there are people out there like Laura Bruner who understand the balance between nutrition and the rest of your life. I first ran into Laura online when I was researching (read: stalking) the NC Fit, then called NorCal Crossfit, website. As a Crossfit Level 3 coach and owner of Radical Roots, she works with clients to find a happy and manageable balance. If you're lucky enough to live in Northern California (specifically the Santa Cruz area), I suggest reaching out to her for your fitness and nutrition questions!

What made you decide to get into the fitness/nutrition world? Have you always been into fitness/nutrition?

I was a competitive athlete through high school and college and truly identified myself as such. So much so that by junior year of high school I took training and what I thought was healthy eating too far, leading to being too thin. Because I was an athlete, I would put on enough to do my sport again, but overtrain and drop down too low. This happened off and on until I learned that my identity was so much more than fitness and nutrition, which somewhat ironically, led me to get into fitness and nutrition as a career. Now, my goal is to help people incorporate fitness and nutrition into their lives in a way that allows them to live fully, explore often, love deeply, and enjoy every minute of life without being consumed by fitness or nutrition.

Balance of nutrition and fitness.

Balance of nutrition and fitness.

What is your favorite post-workout meal?

Currently, I have Rootz protein immediately after I train, and then because I live just a short 4 minute walk to my gym, I get home and have a solid balanced meal. This meal typically consists of a big plate of arugula with a hefty squeeze of lemon juice then topped with two pastured eggs fried in ghee (the runny yolks are key here as they soak the arugula for true delectability). Often, I add extra egg whites, not because yolks are bad in any way (they are incredibly nutrient dense and loaded with essential vitamins and cholesterol), but because that window after we train is best for plenty of protein and carbohydrate to fuel muscle repair and recovery. So for carbohydrate, I usually have a large banana sliced up in some organic sheep's milk yogurt, and if the training was especially grueling, I'll also stir in some organic Purely Elizabeth ancient grain oatmeal. Starchy, glucose rich carbs are best post training. 

How to you balance your fitness priorities with the rest of your life goals and priorities?

By spinning the dialogue. The purpose of prioritizing fitness and nutrition is to allow me to best fulfill and live out the other most important priorities in my life. If don't take time to workout, build strength, and release stress, I won't be the best version of myself now or down the line. If I don't eat well, I won't feel well. Each is essential for fueling and making the best of the other passions I have in life, so they are non negotiable. Of course, there are times when I take breaks - vacations, celebrations, etc. - but overall I feel best and happiest when I eat well and move every day. It helps that I enjoy eating nourishing foods and love the time I spend in the gym. 

Who is currently on your workout playlist?

I don't actually know. I am training at CrossFit Santa Cruz right now, so it's whatever my training partners feel like listening too. I am not picky, but I will avoid country at all costs in the gym. 

What's next on your fitness/nutrition journey?

My goal is to keep training and educating others to be the best versions of themselves, and in the meantime to strive to be the best version of myself. I plan to keep training to do the things I love - hike, backpack, rock climb, stand up paddle board, play with my two pups, and eventually to chase a couple kids around. I plan to keep experimenting with what fuels me best and to keep creating recipes that are tasty and nourishing. I plan to keep working with my nutrition clients to help them learn that eating well and fueling their bodies does not have to mean restriction or hunger. Seeing the light click and hearing people tell me about how much better they feel and how much else stems from that is the best reward.