Fit-City Challenge: Let’s Eat Like Winners, Windsor!
Saturday October 20th, 2012
Posted at 8:00am
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Here are some ideas for someone who is eating like crap.
Healthy eating is not about strict nutrition philosophies, staying unrealistically thin, or depriving yourself of the foods you love. Rather, it’s about feeling great, having more energy, stabilizing your mood, and keeping yourself as healthy as possible -– all of which can be achieved by learning some nutrition basics and using them in a way that works for you. You can expand your range of healthy food choices and learn how to plan ahead to create and maintain a tasty, healthy diet.
Burgers, take-out, delivery and all those quick boxed foods.. enough of this, Skip THE DRIVE THRU …. make fresh right at home!! Have grilled chicken breast on the BBQ and add an avocado instead of mayo, tomato and spinach instead of lettuce then kick it up with some hot sauce. Now that’s a great sandwich, it’s easy to prepare and way healthier for you.
Staying away from those processed foods and “ready made” meals is the best way to go. They have so many additives to them that really just cause slow digestion and a slow down in your metabolism, no nobody wants that. It can also cause acne and you can feel lethargic too. All that crappy stuff just does no good for you especially if you are working out, it’s giving you crappy fuel to perform on. Also if your going to work your butt off why would you cheat and eat that piece of cake.
So Fit-Life Contestants and all of you Fit-City Challengers, we have some very helpful tips below for you. We are sharing with you the ways we like to eat and drink and what we find works best in our lives. Read them over and see what you could add to your lifestyle.
COFFEE – coffee is very acidic and well we all know it’s addictive. Now we are not discouraging it completely, but if you’re drinking crazy amounts every day then you should really switch some of those cups up for some hot water. You would be surprised how soothing it actually is. Danielle quit coffee herself about 4-5 weeks ago. It was hard for about 3 days, big deal. If you are having 5-7 coffees a day slow it down to 2. John use to drink up to 10 coffees a day. He has cut that in half already. WAY TO GO JOHN!! Skip that sugar in your mug. NO SUGAR, no sweeteners either. After a few days your body will adjust and get used to no sugar so will your taste buds. If you need something sweet with you coffee try making these power bars and have one of those. The power bar recipe we have is all natural sugar from fruit, and it will not cause your blood sugar to spike.
SNACKS – Some people just never know what to snack on, it’s actually really simple.
Apples with a few raw almonds or apples with all natural peanut butter, (great for killing those chocolate cravings). Home made trail mix is great too — go to the bulk store and buy raw nuts, dried fruit, raw seeds and mix them all together. Grab a handful a day if you need a snack. You can even package them up in little baggies to keep in your car, desk at work, etc. You know those times you’re driving home from work, just starving, well these little pre-packed snacks will make you feel like a million bucks. They also will keep you from stuffing your face with drive thru crap. Those of you driving right to a workout after a long day on the job, you need fuel. Don’t be stupid and show up to your workout (what ever it my be) with no fuel in your body. Your poor body, how is it supposed to perform how you want it too if you aren’t giving it the proper fuel to do so.
Here’s an amazing quick recipe from one of our AxFit bloggers Neviana They are the picture you see above in this post.
Little Energy Bites:
2 cups dates
1/4 cup hemp seed
1/4 raw sunflower seeds
1/4 dried cranberries
1/8 koji berries
1/4 unsweetened coconut
In a good processor/ high speed blender purée the dates till sticky and kneed in the rest of the ingredient.
Make into balls and roll in coconut. No need for fridge
Fruit and veggie shakes, or juice from a juicer. If you have no idea what to ask your loved one for this Christmas. Well a Juicer it is!! These are incredible machines that will change your life, that’s if you use them. They don’t belong tucked away at the top of your pantry. If you have one at home.. pull that sucker out. We will be sharing with you some incredible shakes like Neviana’s Green Power Smoothy . It’s amazing for you and super yummy, you can just taste the goodness in it and trust us you will walk the walk all day or night after chuggin’ back this!
Here’s a few more quick mixers:
Shakes – ½ banana, ½ avocado, 1ts raw honey, 2tsp hemp seeds, 1-2 cups almond milk.
1 cup frozen mango, 1 cup spinach, ½ banana 1-2 cups plant based milk
1cup Spinach, 1 kale leaf, 1 banana, 2tsp honey , 2tsp cocoa, 1/8 tsp cinnamon , 1-2 cups plant based milk
Ok we can’t say this enough – WATER WATER WATER… hydration is key. 2L a day minimum. YES you read that right Minimum, I know lots of people that say.. “I haven’t had a sip of anything all day just my coffee this morning!!” Now that’s just gross: if you care about how you look and feel then what’s up with that? You should constantly have a bottle at an arms reach at all times. Your skin, hair, organs, muscles even your eye balls LOVE water. So wet those lips Windsorites!
Before breakfast, have a lemon water, hot or cold is fine. MANY TIMES HUNGER IS CONFUSED WITH THIRST. When Danielle quit coffee she substituted it with Hot water and lemon which has more benefits than you think.
SUNDAY PREP DAY
- make enough quinoa for the week. Quinoa refrigerates well for up to a week.
- Have apples already washed so you can just grab one (something so simple helps out a lot)
- Divide your trail mix in ziplock bags
- Cut up veggies, so they are ready fro your salads
- Meat and fish should be around 3oz per serving
- 1 egg to every 4 egg whites.
MUST HAVES IN PANTRY & FRIDGE
- Skip the low fat milk and replace it with a plant based like almond or coconut. Low fat milk is full or chemicals….they use strong chemicals to strip the fat off full fat milk….. who wants to drink that???
- Olive oil for salads, grape seed oil or coconut for cooking
- Hemp seeds
- Flax seeds
- Good quality protein powder ( if using)
- Nuts and seeds
- Dried fruits
- NATURAL peanut butter or raw almond butter, or even pumpkin seed butter ( all found at Zehrs)
- Raw good quality honey or agave
- Balsamic vinegar for salad dressing
- Green veggies, kale, spinach, spring mix, asparagus, broccoli, green beans, cilantro, parsley, green onion
- Already cut up carrots, cherry tomatoes (for quick salads)
- Black beans, chick peas (these have a lot of protein and fiber and can be added to salads and soups)
- Whole wheat or rise noodles
- Garlic (for seasoning and salad dressing)
- Plant based milk
- Whole wheat bread ( look for something with no more then 5 ingredients )
- Whole wheat tortillas
- Good quality meat, skip the lunch meat ( look at the ingredients of lunch meat …some have ICING SUGAR??
PROTEIN – WHY IS IT IMPORTANT? WHERE CAN YOU FIND IT?
Protein gives us the energy to get up and go—and keep going. Protein in food is broken down into the 20 amino acids that are the body’s basic building blocks for growth and energy, and essential for maintaining cells, tissues, and organs. A lack of protein in our diet can slow growth, reduce muscle mass, lower immunity, and weaken the heart and respiratory system. Protein is particularly important for children, whose bodies are growing and changing daily.
Here are some guidelines for including protein in your healthy diet:
Try different types of protein. Whether or not you are a vegetarian, trying different protein sources—such as beans, nuts, seeds, peas, tofu, and soy products—will open up new options for healthy mealtimes.
- Beans: Black beans, navy beans, garbanzos, and lentils are good options.
- Nuts: Almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and pecans are great choices.
- Soy products: Try tofu, soy milk, tempeh, and veggie burgers for a change.
- Avoid salted or sugary nuts and refried beans. RAW only way to go or you might as well eat some salty fries.
Downsize your portions of protein. Many people in the West eat too much protein. Try to move away from protein being the center of your meal. Focus on equal servings of protein, whole grains, and vegetables.
Focus on quality sources of protein, like fresh fish, chicken or turkey, tofu, eggs, beans, or nuts. When you are having meat, chicken, or turkey, buy meat that is free of hormones and antibiotics, grain fed.
CARBS – WHAT IS ALL THE FUSS ABOUT?
A quick definition of healthy carbs and unhealthy carbs
Healthy carbs (sometimes known as good carbs) include whole grains, beans, fruits, and vegetables. Healthy carbs are digested slowly, helping you feel full longer and keeping blood sugar and insulin levels stable.
Unhealthy carbs (or bad carbs) are foods such as white flour, refined sugar, and white rice that have been stripped of all bran, fiber, and nutrients. Unhealthy carbs digest quickly and cause spikes in blood sugar levels and energy.
Tips for eating more healthy carbs
- Include a variety of whole grains in your healthy diet, including whole wheat, brown rice, millet, quinoa, and barley. Experiment with different grains to find your favorites.
- Make sure you’re really getting whole grains. Be aware that the words stone-ground, multi-grain, 100% wheat, or bran can be deceptive. Look for the words “whole grain” or “100% whole wheat” at the beginning of the ingredient list. In the U.S., Canada, and some other countries, check for the Whole Grain Stamps that distinguish between partial whole grain and 100% whole grain.
- Try mixing grains as a first step to switching to whole grains. If whole grains like brown rice and whole wheat pasta don’t sound good at first, start by mixing what you normally use with the whole grains. You can gradually increase the whole grain to 100%.
Avoid: Refined foods such as breads, pastas, and breakfast cereals that are not whole grain.
WHEN TO EAT
Eat several small meals per day instead of three large meals, recommends the American Council on Exercise. Nevertheless, don’t skip breakfast–and make breakfast your biggest meal of the day. Because appetite is triggered by a delayed body mechanism, eat slowly so that your brain has time to tell your body that it is not hungry anymore. Avoid restaurant meals because most restaurants serve oversize portions, and you may be tempted to rationalize overeating by telling yourself that you don’t want to waste money.
Stick to smaller meals and eat every 2-3 hours.
8pm small snack (cup of barriers, orange, apple)
More fresh fruit and veggies added to your diet will not only boost energy but it will make you feel good.
People who eat junk usually wonder why they are hungry again after. BECAUSE you didn’t properly feed your body with good meal that has vitamins and minerals…so a few hours later your body is sending you signal that it need good nutrition…feed your body what it needs…fresh fruits and veggies, good quality meat and whole wheat grains. Read CK’s Reasons to eat more meals!
HOW TO STICK TO A NEW DIET
Making too many changes at once may overwhelm you and set you up for failure. Considering certain foods completely off-limits may tempt you to cheat on your diet or get discouraged and drop your new healthy eating plan. Have fun with it, be proud of the foods you eat and inspire others.
Hope some of this has given you some piece of mind and realize that it’s not hard to eat clean and fuel your body with what it needs not always what it wants. Kick it up Windsorites and leave some comments below, share some recipes or any tips you have that work for you!!
Neviana, DK & CK