Posts tagged ‘diet’

May 6, 2014

How to Undo an Overdo

ImageYou did it–rather, you overdid it. You ate too much, drank too much, or simply had two desserts you didn’t need and fell asleep on them. This morning, you feel well, frumpy. Don’t fear, you didn’t do as much damage as you think. Remember a pound equals 3,500 calories. So, even if you ate the entire box of donuts, and washed them down with a jug of whole milk, you’re out a pound. Despite the sugar shock you placed on your body, you’re going to be okay. In the whole scheme of things, it’s really not a big deal. Chock the day up to an “off day” and gear up for a new day. Here’s the game plan:

Image#1. Spend the day drinking (guzzling) water. Drink water as often as possible. You need to literally flush your system of the toxins you consumed during your indulgence.
#2. Eat 24-30 grams of fiber throughout the day. Do not go to sleep until you’ve ingested this fiber. Fiber works as a broom within your system to “sweep” out toxic buildup which makes it easier for fat cells to move through your body.
#3. Get 30-1 hour of activity. Literally, go sweat out the toxins. (Are you noticing a key word?) If possible, book an ion cleanse to help move toxic debris along. 
#4. Stick to stuff from the earth: grains, water, fruits, vegetables, beans as much as possible. Grab most of your calories from these foods.
#5. DO NOT STARVE YOURSELF or limit your calories below 1,000 calories. Depending on your height, weight, and age, you need a certain amount of calories to keep the fire burning within your system. Think of your metabolism as a fire. Think of these foods as lighter fluid, which boosts flames. On the contrary, foods that are high fat, highly processed, high sodium, or with many preservatives act like dirt/sand which puts a fire out. Trust me, you don’t want your fire to burn out. If it does, your body stops burning fat and calories as efficiently. This tip is especially important immediately following a day of over-indulgence.
#6. Drink tea once or twice throughout the day. I say caffeine is a-okay!* It’s my experience that caffeine also helps keep things moving–if you know what I mean. That is exceptionally important after a splurge as well. (*I want to make it clear that there is zero scientific research attached to this statement. It is purely my personal opinion.)
#7. Your taste buds may feel a little deprived since they got a mouthful–literally–yesterday, don’t give into them. Remember that the first bite of anything is the most savory, so if you are feeling weak, just have one bite of the indulgence. One small bite will not derail your efforts.Image
#8. Get a good amount of sleep. Your muscles and digestive system regenerate as you sleep, so give your body time to do this. Also, if you’re asleep, you’re not consuming anything
#9. Plan out tomorrow’s meals. Planning ahead ensures that you’ll have the supplies needed and fuel yourself appropriately.
#10. Spend a few minutes looking in a full length mirror before you go to bed. Say three nice things about your body and appearance. Smile at yourself. heck, even blow a kiss!

For more tips like these, or for personalized, goal-specific wellness coaching, email: lectrofit@gmail.com. Love yourself! 

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September 24, 2013

They won’t kick you out of the club….

I tend to follow the Paleo Guidelines of eating. It’s what works for me. Lots of meat and veggies and no grains or dairy. My body can tolerate the dairy, but the grains…well, over time I have definitely discovered I have a gluten sensitivity. I also never miss drinking my Shakeology…a shake that is filled with over 72 vitamins and minerals that is packed with dense nutrition. That shake is not technically paleo as the protein source is whey. People say to me all the time….”you drink Shakeology, but its not Paleo.” My response…”SO! They aren’t going to kick me out of the club!”

Whether you are vegetarian, pescatarian, vegan, paleo or whatever other ways of eating there are out there, they are all just guidelines. There is no membership program and you aren’t going to get slapped with a penalty for “breaking the rules”. They are just that…guidelines. These guidelines give you a framework with which to define your eating. It might just be a tried and true system of what works for you. 

Don’t feel the need to be so strict with one way of eating. Do what works for you. What feels right for you. Eat what makes you feel satiated and full of energy. That is what matters most when it comes to eating, not the label attached! Image

August 6, 2013

I eat food….

“What do you eat?”–I must get that question a bajillion times a day. My answer is always, “FOOD!” I am not trying to be a smart a$% when I answer it that way, but its simply the truth. I don’t count calories. I know for a lot of people that works…but the problem is too many people look at the number versus the quality of the food. 100 calories of Oreos is still Oreos. For me, I like to just really think about the food that I am eating and putting into my body. The better the quality of the food and the more dense nutrition packed in there the more of it I can eat. I don’t necessarily have to worry about my portion control that way. Why? 

Did you ever wonder why you can sit down and eat an entire bag of chips or a an entire pizza pie and not be full?  Yet if you are eating a steak and sweet potatoes you fill up rather quickly with no room in your belly for more? Its because the steak and sweet potato are filled with dense nutrition which signals your body that its full. When you are eating those “empty calories” filled with zero nutritional value, your body requires way more to be satiated, at which point it never really is. So when I say I eat food, and I don’t have to portion or weigh it out, its because when you are choosing food that is whole and good for you, you will know when you are full. Its when you are choosing those items that are processed and have little to no nutritional value that you really have to weigh out your portions because otherwise you will overeat. 

Make better choices. Eat less food from boxes and more food from the Earth. So that next time someone asks you what you eat, you can say FOOD! Image

July 24, 2013

Be Raw, Y’all!

ImageOk, so I confess that I am not a full-time raw foodie; however, I dabble in the lifestyle every so often. Raw foods are some of the most nutrient dense choices and beneficial nourishment  options available. Some would say that raw foods are what we were intended to eat… others, however, prefer to cook what they eat. Whatever your preference, I challenge you to try some of these raw recipes and experience the benefits—if only temporarily—of raw foods. Why would you do that? 

ImageA raw foods diet is made up of fresh, whole, unrefined, living, plant-based foods: fruits, vegetables, leafy greens, nuts, and seeds, which are consumed in their natural state, without cooking or steaming. Contrary to popular belief, a person consuming a raw food diet draws enough daily calories from fruits, which are high in calories, along with liberal amounts of vegetables for their high mineral content, and small amounts of nuts and seeds.

ImagePeople who adopt this diet are often referred to as “raw fooders” or “raw vegans” (or in my case, when I am practicing this style of nourishment, “weird.”) Hey, you’re not really living unless you’re called “weird” or “odd” once in your life, right? Other benefits of taking this nutritional road less traveled (especially in America, where more than one-third of U.S. adults (35.7%) are obese and where 23.9 million children ages 2 to 19 are overweight or obese) include cleansing your internal organs.

How’s your liver these days? Have you checked in with your colon? If you’re experiencing any gastrointestinal issues, skin imperfections, exhaustion, or unexplained moodiness, your internal systems may be gasping and working overtime, trying to wash themselves of toxic gunk left over from the standard American diet. (Abbreviated to the S.A.D. diet by some) By consuming more raw foods, you basically eliminate any constipation or other “plumbing issues” you might be experiencing. You also reduce toxic build up because everything you consume now takes under 24 hours or less, to travel through your body and deliver nourishment appropriately.

Scared to take the raw plunge because you’re an athlete and you need your energy? You might like to know that athletes can perform successfully at an elite level by following a raw food diet. James Southwood, international kickboxing champion, Brendan Brazier, Canadian professional triathlete and Kenneth G. Williams, third at the Natural Mr. Olympia are all raw food practitioners. Likewise, Suzanna Strachan admittedly leads a vegan lifestyle of 75-90% raw and has demonstrated extreme athleticism in Ms. Fitness competitions and ex-model Carol Alt convinced her Russian hockey star husband Alexei Yashin to go raw. Apparently adding more raw foods to his diet increased his athletic performance!

Surely, you’re intrigued to give it a try. Think about it this way:

  1. You save time by not cooking
  2. You experience an inexpensive detoxification process
  3. You can make it a spiritual experience with prayer and fasting (consuming fruits and vegetables only)

In closing, here is a favorite Raw recipe to try—especially for you pizza-lovers. (Compliments of www.youngandraw.com)

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 Garden Veggie Crust

2 Local Red Bell Pepper

1 Small Sweet Yellow Onion

2 small Yellow Squash

4 Garden Carrots

2  Cups Sunflower Seeds

1 tsp. Paprika

1/2 tsp. Coriander

1/2 tsp. Cumin

1/2 tsp. Himalayan Salt

Instructions: Process all of your ingredients in a food processor until you can form small sized patties. Place on your dehydrator sheets and form whatever shape you like, patties, bread etc. Let them dehydrate for 5-8 hours depending on how moist or crisp you’d like them to be. I recommend more crisp for a pizza recipe.

Sun-dried Tomato Basil Pizza Sauce:

Half cup sundried tomatoes

2 small chipotle peppers *optional

2 small vine ripened tomatoes

1/4 tsp. himalayan salt

2 cloves of garlic

1/2 cup fresh basil

Instructions: Process or blend until the mixture is smooth and warm.

Pine Nut Parmesan

1/4 Cup Pine Nuts

1/4 tsp. Nutritional Yeast

1 Garlic Clove

Pinch of Himalayan Salt

Few dashes of onion powder

Instructions: Put ingredients into the food processor or blender and pulse/blend until you have a finely ground parmesan.

Not all recipes are this in-depth either… These days I am running to long days of filming or training, and nothing gives me a better combination of energy and vibrance (due to the sustainable ratio of protein, carbs, and fat) like an organic fruit and veggie nut smoothie or a crisp and satisfying spinach salad with quinoa and cranberries. YUM!

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In health and complete weirdness, Lacey Pruett

May 20, 2013

Vegetarian Meal Planning: Compassion and Convenience

hugged veggie

Hello, and Happy Monday! It’s Brooke here. I’ve been a vegetarian for a long time now (more than 15 years), and I love that there’s a way I can still be healthy while respecting the creatures in our world. Now, I am certainly not an expert by any means, and when it comes to balancing my life with proper (sufficient) nutrition in a timely manner, I am NOT always successful. But every day I try to make my fuel a priority, and some days are better than others. But I keep aspiring to live up to my best intentions, in and out of the kitchen.

I came to this lifestyle in a meandering fashion. For years, I was the “picky” eater in the house. You may be familiar with the line from A Christmas Story, “Every family has a kid who won’t eat.” I was that kid! My sister and I had to eat three bites of everything on our plate before we could be excused from dinner. Many meals ended with my family bustling around the kitchen, putting their dishes away while I sat by myself at the table, looking at my half-finished plate, usually with meat or a few veggies remaining forlornly around the edges. Now, I didn’t single out meat purposely back then, but I just wasn’t its biggest fan. I managed to stay plenty nourished, however, and made my way to college. About this time, I started learning about the vegetarian life and what it felt like to make decisions that went against my social conditioning and what I’d always taken for granted. I grew up in Texas, after all—barbeque was always the first thing that was catered in for any kind of occasion. Definitely a challenge!

why love one

I love animals desperately, as you probably know by now. Also, one of the strongest drivers of human behavior is to live in a way that is consistent with what you believe. This is why what you tell yourself is so freakin’ important! You become what you believe or say you will be. So, your self-talk better be purposeful, supportive, and meaningful if you want that kind of life. Well, my turning point came when I realized that how I felt about animals didn’t square with my eating them. Here was another significant moment measured by a quotation, this time from Chrissie Hynde: “Animals are my friends, and I don’t eat my friends.” This changed my whole life!

cow hug

I was a freshman and living in a dorm with no kitchen when I declared to my family I would no longer eat meat, much to my mother’s consternation. This time was a blur, but I do remember eating a lot of pasta and pizza and waffles (!)—no coincidence that I put on some weight. I called my extra layer my winter padding, like a seal has—what was I thinking? The ways you justify things to yourself! Well, I managed to screw up my digestive system in the process—I felt bloated and yucky constantly, lost my appetite, was malnourished, and didn’t even realize it. So, I went back to how I ate the last time I felt good, in high school in the cafeteria—a meat, two vegetables, a roll, a small dessert, and a carton of milk. I began feeling better, all while learning more about how to eat more healthfully. Eventually, I incorporated more grains and vegetables and got rid of the meat again. I wish I could say it was all pretty, but I was a college student on a budget, and there were a LOT of peanut butter and honey sandwiches involved. One particular shining moment was the day I fixed couscous from a box with canned carrots and canned green beans. Happiness!!

As time has passed, I’ve gained a few more kitchen skills, I’ve learned a lot more about nutrition, and although I have spent years pulling out recipes and squirreling them away to use someday, my vision of kitchen nirvana involving both the immaculate white kitchen and the va-va-voom of Giada De Laurentiis have not materialized. But I do have a basic plan that I follow that gives me a little bit of structure as I navigate my day.

Breakfast

lean protein, complex carb, simple carb, healthy fat

First: multivitamin + calcium/magnesium/zinc supplement + vegetarian omega-3s THEN breakfast

(Examples: protein breakfast smoothie [banana, strawberries, whey protein, almond milk, olive oil or flaxseeds, and nuts] OR scrambled eggs/egg whites and oatmeal with coconut oil, berries, walnuts, cinnamon, and Truvia)

Morning Snack

lean protein, complex or simple carbs

(Example: protein shake with a banana or ½ cup berries OR a green smoothie with power greens blend [arugula, chard, or kale], spinach, water, celery, pear, apple, and a banana)

Lunch

lean protein, complex carbs, simple carb , healthy fat

(Example: spicy black bean patty, couscous or rice, ½ avocado with lemon juice and sea salt AND a big, dark-green salad full of veggies, a bit of fruit and light shredded cheese [maybe], and nuts)

Pre-Workout Snack

lean protein, complex carbs, simple carb , healthy fat

(Example: leftover or extra scrambled eggs and oatmeal from the morning OR whole wheat English muffin, almond butter, ½ banana, few blueberries, flaxseeds, and drizzle of honey) + BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids)

Post-Workout Snack

lean protein, simple carb

BCAAs + glutamine + creatine (optional) THEN whey protein with almond milk and 1 cup grape juice or fruit

Dinner

lean protein, complex carbs, healthy fat (sometimes)

(Example: beans or bean or lentil soup, couscous or rice, green vegetables or large salad, ½ avocado with lemon juice and sea salt)

Bedtime Snack (if needed, usually yes!)

lean protein, healthy fat

(Example: protein shake (casein and whey) with almond milk OR Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, berries, and nuts)

Now, you’ll notice that I try to eat a good amount of complex, starchy carbs. Currently, my training goals include adding curves and weight by building lean muscle and lifting heavy, and I need fuel (probably still more than I’m getting) to do this. But if you’re trying to tighten up, you can dial back on the complex carbs and a little of the healthy fats at lunch and later in the day. This is just a plan that works for me. Vegetarian options abound these days, and I’ll share some more recipes as I find time to try them. Wish me luck! I can’t wait to hear about what works for you. So, let me know if you have some great ideas for strong, sexy, cruelty-free curves—I’m always listening.

Have a super week!

Brooke

compassion is the new sexy

 

February 19, 2013

Snack Time!

hummus and veggies

Hi, there! It’s Brooke here. Let’s talk about something fun . . . snacks! Now, before we go too far, let’s demystify something. Food and nutrition can be loaded topics—some people have a great relationship with food, while others may think of eating as a confusing, guilt-ridden, boring, or necessary evil. Then we throw in snacks, and craziness breaks out! Snacks are often given a bad rap, mainly because many people choose munchies that are WAAAAY too full of calories, sugar, unhealthy fats, and sodium. Think of those tasty treats in vending machines and gas stations (not to mention your local grocery store, Aisle 17). We’ve all been there. I’m not proud of how much I love the taste of a kosher dill potato chip, but hey, I’m human. I avoid the siren song of this devilish dill delight because I know better—and my body deserves better, as does yours. Snacks will save your rear, in more ways than one.

apple hearts

Healthy gals and guys know one of the most important ways to reach their fitness goals is to eat 5-6 small meals a day, including snacks. Your body is an amazing machine, and it needs to burn quality fuel regularly throughout the day to keep you going strong. If you start thinking of food as fuel instead of something you have to deal with just to survive, your world will be rocked and you’ll become your body’s most powerful ally. Think of your nutrition schedule like this:

Meal 1: Breakfast

Meal 2: Mid-morning snack

Meal 3: Lunch

Meal 4: Mid-afternoon snack (or pre-workout snack)

Meal 5: Dinner (or post-workout snack)

Meal 6: Snack (or dinner)

Notice how you can incorporate pre- and post-workout snacks into your daily plan. You can also shift this structure to the morning if you like your workouts early. To keep your fire burning bright, eat every 2.5-3 hours. For your snacks, try to shoot for at least 10 grams of protein and 25-35 grams of carbohydrates by including 1 or 2 complex carbs (whole grains, veggies, most fruits, beans, brown rice, or oatmeal) and a little healthy fat (nuts, seeds, almond butter, low-fat dairy, or avocado). High-quality protein, carbs, and fats are going to keep you feeling satisfied and give you energy.

Nutritious Nibbles

  • 1 c. raspberries with ½ c. Greek yogurt
  • 1 small apple with 1 Tbsp almond or peanut butter
  • ½ c. cottage cheese with ½ c. mixed berries
  • 1 or 2 eggs (hard-boiled) with 2 whole-grain flatbreads
  • 2 Tbsp almond or peanut butter spread on 2-4 celery sticks
  • 6 carrot sticks with 1 low-fat mozzarella string cheese
  • 4 natural whole-wheat honey graham crackers with 10 red or green grapes
  • 1 c. low-fat milk (or almond milk) with 1 scoop chocolate (or other flavor) protein powder (can be whey or plant-based protein powder), along with a banana
  • Quick Basic Smoothie: 1 c. low-fat milk (or almond milk) with ¼ c. frozen or fresh berries with ½ fresh or frozen banana (Hint: Frozen fruit makes the smoothie thick and icy!)
  • 3 c. air-popped (or unsalted and unbuttered!) popcorn drizzled with 2 tsp flaxseed oil, 1 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese, and dash of cayenne pepper, along with 1 apple
  • 6-10 veggie pieces: celery, carrot, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber, zucchini, or yellow squash dipped in 2 Tbsp hummus or low-fat vinaigrette dressing
  • Homemade Trail Mix: 2 Tbsp dried fruit, 1 Tbsp sunflower kernels or pumpkin seeds, 1 Tbsp unsalted nuts, and a pinch of unsweetened coconut flakes

If you need a basic snack, an apple and some nuts or maybe even a protein shake and a banana are great options. However, if you are headed to the gym, be sure to grab something rich in slow-burning carbs and lean protein (like oatmeal and scrambled egg whites) to fuel your efforts. Here’s one of my favorite recipes that I love to fix before working out. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Yum!

Yum!

Banana Blueberry Power Snack

  • 1 whole-wheat English muffin
  • 2 Tbsp almond butter
  • ½ banana
  • Small handful of blueberries
  • ½-1 Tbsp ground flaxseed
  • Small drizzle of honey

Toast both halves of the English muffin. Spread 1 Tbsp almond butter on each half of the muffin. Slice the banana into small slices, and then arrange the slices flat on each half. Place the blueberries around and in between banana slices (the berries tend to roll off—trust me!). Sprinkle ground flaxseed across each muffin half, and then drizzle each half with a little honey. Yum!!

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Keep fueling that beautiful body of yours, and have a super week!

~Brooke