Good evening guys and happy Sunday!! I hope you all have had an incredible weekend! Mine was low key and mostly spent at home, and that is okay with me!

I am going to dive right into today’s blog topic, which refers to something that I get asked about a lot…a typical day of eating.

To begin, I am an early riser. I am up by 3am (4 at the latest), and begin my morning with about 16 ounces of water. Most of us are dehydrated upon waking, so immediately downing some water kickstarts hydration, digestion, and coats the belly for the oh-so acidic black coffee that usually comes next. I like to get in a sweat first thing, so I either hop on the elliptical at my house or if time permits and I want added intensity, I will head to the gym just down the road and sweat it out on the stair mill. Although I take in BCAA’s (branch chain amino acids) while completing my cardio, by the time I am finished, I’m ravished. Breakfast for me at the moment is either oatmeal and egg whites topped with Texas Pete (the best hot sauce ever), or riced cauliflower mixed with shredded potatoes, bell peppers and egg whites with a side of fruit, or I opt for a protein shake made with coconut water if its close to my workout time.

Three days a week I coach the early classes at F45, which leaves me getting ready and heading out immediately after breakfast. When coaching in the am I typically cover three classes, and am done by 9:00. My calorie expenditure is always at least 200 cals per class, so by the end, I am more than ready for meal two. I try my best to have something prepped and waiting for me at home or I mix up my daily green smoothie while I fix up something. A typical lunch for me includes 1-2 veggies of some sort (the last two weeks has been broccoli and red potatoes), a protein source (a veggie patty or egg whites), and fat (almost always avocado or oil).

Once my lunch settles, the pup and I will take our am neighborhood stroll. Our walks are divided into two sessions now that it’s getting warm, so we’re back home within 15 minutes. I use the next couple of hours of the day to take care of my “to-do’s.” By noon I’m munching on my pre-workout snack if I haven’t lifted yet, which almost always includes some sort of fruit, whether it be on top of oats, yogurt, or mixed within a smoothie.

On a typical training day, I’ll spend about 60 to 90 minutes in the gym depending on my programming. I try to make certain that I eat within 1 hour of my weight training (for optimal recovery). My post-workout meal always consists of a faster absorbing carb and a protein. Protein pancakes with fruit has been a recent favorite!

If most of you are like me, I find that I have a good amount of energy for a couple of hours following my workout. After my post-workout meal Jack and I will either take another short stroll or take it to the backyard for a few minutes of playtime. My afternoons are spent completing client check-ins, studying, or taking care of things around the house. I go to bed fairly early, so I am usually prepping dinner around 4 or 5. I find (like most), I am much hungrier in the evening. In order to feel completely satisfied, I load up on fibrous veggies: broccoli, okra, eggplant, green beans, zucchini, and cauliflower are my usual go-to’s.

 

There is no rule stating how many meals one should have per day, nor is there enough evidence stating that meal timing is detrimental to training; however, for me, I find that 4 to 5 meals spread throughout the day works best. Some individuals may react better to 2 to 3 larger meals. The bottom line, the foods you choose to eat are far more important than when you eat them.

Cheers to an incredible week ahead and staying on track!

Hey you all, let’s catch up!

I ended last week with a kickball game on Sunday with my F45 fam. Y’all, it was so much fun!! The weather was perfect, and I couldn’t have been in better company. Oh, and my team won (btw).

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This leads me to today’s topic…treating yo-self when summer shredding. I have been asked repeatedly since beginning this series, “Do you have a cheat meal when summer shredding?”

I decided throughout this series that I will allow myself a little treat here and there. Take Sunday for instance, I celebrated with a beer following our game (blue moon for those with inquisitive minds), but my snack plate was full of fruit and raw veggies, and I brought a protein shake in my bag. Fast forward to today, and while grocery shopping after my workout, I bought myself one chocolate covered honeycomb. I kept looking at the bulk section where they have all the yummy extras, and decided, why not. The five minutes it took for me to figure out how to weigh this 30-gram piece of yumminess was worth every second and all .36 cents. I sat in my car with the air conditioning blowing and enjoyed every single bite (well it was a small piece, so it was only two bites), but it was delish!

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Throughout the week I typically have three to five meals a day, which consist mostly of whole, non-processed foods. I stay away from sugar (hence why that honeycomb was so delectable), drink lots of water, and aim for 20-25 grams of fiber.

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I am typically in a fasted state for the first 3-4 hours of the day. There is no reasoning behind this approach, other than I am just not hungry when I wake. I am up at least four days a week no later than 4 am, and usually eat around 8.

I think it’s important to remember that having a full-on “cheat meal” can stall progress; however, some people plan a cheat meal the last day of the week as a reward or something to look forward to. While this may work for some, other individuals find that a cheat or treat will send them into full-on binge mode and opt to avoid the temptation altogether. The bottom line, I think it’s important that each person finds their own approach and what works best for them.

Cheers!

Happy Sunday y’all! Here we are approaching the end of summer shredding, week 2!!
In today’s post, I want to focus a bit on food balance.

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Above, I have shared a week’s worth of breakfast choices. While each breakfast is a bit different, they all contain almost identical calories and macronutrient totals. I am a creature of habit and could eat the same breakfast almost every day of my life; however, I find this approach does not work well with clients. People don’t necessarily like change in general, but when it comes to food, most like a variety. This is where macro tracking comes in handy. Take the above for example you will see some of the photos show clementines (baby oranges), which are mostly made up of carbohydrates, and others do not. On days that I have orange slices, I will not add fruit to my green smoothie, instead, I opt for yogurt, almond milk, and spinach only. On days that I have avocado which is considered mostly fat, then I will skip the oil when cooking my peppers or egg whites.

Every meal needs to have a balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fats. If you are having two slices of bacon, then you should choose egg whites as opposed to whole eggs to pair it with, due to the fat found in the bacon. I love, love, love shredded potatoes (aka hash browns), but I know that potatoes are strictly carbohydrates, so on days that I want to add fruit to my meal (or my smoothie), I will substitute half of my potatoes with riced cauliflower (which contain half the carbs of potatoes). This allows me to hit my suggested macronutrient totals, without going over on my carbohydrates.

I also want to make it clear that not everyone has to follow macros. I haven’t tracked macronutrients consistently in over a year. I am now because of summer shredding, but otherwise, I like to eat intuitively. Macro tracking is perfect for individuals that need and appreciate discipline, and have specific goals in mind. For those that are looking to simply live healthier lifestyles and eat a more balanced diet, intuitive eating is absolutely fine. Intuitive eating means listening to your body, eating when you are hungry, and being mindful of what is on your plate- striving for balance. Not all of my clients are macro trackers. For those that track macros, I have them tracking and weighing each and every piece of food that they put in their mouth; whereas, my intuitive eaters begin by creating their plates using measuring cups and spoons. After a few weeks, they are able to “eyeball” each portion size. This approach allows people to become aware of what they are eating and how to pair foods together to create overall balance, eventually leading to a healthier way of eating.

I challenge you all to be more aware this week of creating balance on your plate. If you choose whole eggs for your protein, then avoid any other fatty foods (bacon, avocado, cooking oils). If you choose egg whites, then enjoy a couple of slices of bacon, or some avocado, or use cooking oil to sauté your veggies. If you choose a banana then skip the potatoes and opt for riced cauliflower. If you are an on-the-go breakfast type, have a smoothie that includes a balance of each: almond milk with a 1/2 tbsp of nut butter (fats), paired with your carb of choice (any fruit), and a protein, this could be in the form of greek yogurt, liquid egg whites (they are pasteurized you won’t die), or protein powder. While you’re at it, toss in some spinach (a multitude of vitamins and nutrients). The taste of spinach is masked by the other ingredients!

Creating a healthier, more balanced lifestyle doesn’t happen overnight. It takes small steps that will eventually generate greater health and wellness.

Thanks for continuing to follow along as I share my tips and personal journey throughout 8-weeks of Summer Shredding.