Try finding an ounce of fat on Kira Stokes’ body. We dare you.
The no-nonsense (but super nice) group exercise instructor and personal trainer (Sherri Shepherd is a long-time client), developed her heart-pounding, cardio-and-conditioning Stoked Method more than a decade ago and has been amassing a major following ever since.
A practice-what-she-preaches kind of a gal, you won’t find many (read: any) guilty pleasures in Stokes’ fridge. So what will you find? A healthy riff on deviled eggs, quinoa by the keg, and a whole lotta stuff for grilling…
That’s a lot of condiments! How do you use them? We grill a lot, so condiments come in very handy. My husband and I live in Larchmont and grilling is one of the benefits of not living in the city. It’s such a great, fast, and healthy way to cook. One great seasoning tool we use on almost everything is Bragg Liquid Aminos. It’s a fantastic alternative to soy sauce with much less sodium but all the taste.
What kind of bars are those by the condiments? Those are thinkThin Crunch bars made with chocolate-dipped mixed nuts. I try to stay away from bars, but on days when I’m teaching five classes in a row, sometimes they’re my only option. I like the ratio of protein to carbs in this bar, and that it’s low in sugar and sodium, and has a decent amount of fiber. All things I look for in snacks.
I see coconut water and kombucha. When do you drink those? I grab a ZICO on days that my teaching schedule is more intense, as I really do feel coconut water can give you that extra edge on super sweaty days. I’m also a big runner, so when I have a long run to do at the end of a full day of teaching and training, I reach for a coconut water. As for the Kombucha, I can’t say I love the taste, but I feel it has a “cleansing” quality to it. I kind of do a shot of it in the morning. Just kind of a weird nutrition “jump start” to my day.
Aside from eggs, I don’t see too much protein. How do you fuel up for all your workouts? Oh, you just can’t see all the protein in there! The bottom shelf has pork chops and chicken ready for grilling. There’s an incredible veggie burger in the foil from Cooked & Co. in Scarsdale, which has lentils, black beans, kale…all sorts of good stuff in it. The small container on the last shelf contains quinoa with mixed veggies. I am a huge fan of quinoa. I often eat it for breakfast and 45 minutes before a workout.
And the eggs? I do eat a lot of eggs, because my schedule is a bit crazy, and they’re convenient. Trader Joe’s has hard-boiled eggs in a bag (yellow bags on the second to last shelf). I will grab a couple, take the yolk out, and put a dab of hummus on the whites—my version of a healthy deviled egg. It’s the perfect ratio of protein to carbs before or after a workout.
Is there anything else you reach for after a workout? I always have a protein shake immediately following a workout. I like BCAA Plantfusion Protein Powder. It’s vegan. I typically blend it with a small handful of raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, flax seed (top shelf, left side, in a bag), water, and ice.
Okay, so I take that back…that’s a lot of protein! What’s in those containers next to the quinoa? Spaghetti squash and mixed veggies. I love spaghetti squash. It’s my version of pasta!
You’ve got both cheese and yogurt. Dairy has become a bit controversial. Do you find that it’s best to avoid dairy if you’re planning on doing a hardcore workout? Yes, I avoid eating dairy before a major workout. I actually don’t eat much dairy in general. I have Laughing Cow light cheese on a 100 calorie, high-fiber Arnold Sandwich Thin on the mornings I’m rushing out of the house at 4:30 a.m. with no time or desire to make oatmeal or an omelette. This is actually a great substitute for people who just can’t seem to give up a bagel and cream cheese.
Occasionally I will have a Siggi’s skyr yogurt, but they’re actually more my husband’s. They have just 100 calories, are high in protein, and low in fat. It’s sweetened with organic agave nectar and has just 7 grams of sugar.
I don’t see anything too guilt-inducing here. Do you have any guilty food pleasures? I’m pretty on point with my diet. I practice the “lead by example” philosophy closely. I’ve spent years trying to help clients find comparable substitutions for unhealthy foods they are trying to give up. For example, Arctic Zero has become my go-to dessert for clients (and myself) trying to break the ice cream habit. I like the mint chocolate cookie. Healthy options are out there, you just have to take the time to open your eyes, and mouth, to find them. —Sharon Feiereisen
For more information on Kira Stokes or her teaching schedule, visit www.kirastokes.com