Sigh. Everyone either WANTS more info on this, or they just don’t want ANYMORE! I really frankly hate talking/writing about nutrition. I’m not a registered dietician, so I cannot give “meal plans” etc, but also- eating is so FUNDAMENTAL and personal. And no one wants to REALLY listen. Because then we are held accountable slightly.
Everyone already knows both so much and so little, right?
On one hand, everyone knows how to eat well. Everyone KNOWS how to. It is harder to DO IT.
On the other hand, there are CONSTANTLY this that or the other diet (also known now as plans, programs etc—so don’t be fooled- a plan is still a “diet” at times….).
So, I’m going to throw out a few ideas. AND the funniest thing- look back to anything I’ve written previously on nutrition- could be 10 years ago. It is the SAME DAMN INFO!! Omg. This is not rocket science, it is not hard to understand, there is not a trick that you’re just missing out on. It is so simple, but OH SO HARD.
First: OMG- I’ve been saying it for years – it is not something new from any company/advocare/shake companies, etc. ::: meal prep. You freaking must plan. That is it. If you do not have a meal plan for the week, I can tell you it probably won’t be really top notch healthy. You’ll be scrambling, you’ll have snacks that you didn’t count on. You need to plan. (again good grief, this is not a NOVEL and new thing). Here is how I do it. This is just one way of many, but it works for me. Thursday nights I try to plan my meals for the following week. Friday I check what ingredients I need that I don’t have for that plan. Sat- Ryan shops for me- yes I am SO thankful and lucky that he does our big shopping trip! Sunday I begin cooking/planning/putting stuff together that needs to be ready for week/washed/cut, etc.
Second. Nutritionists have been saying it for years, I’ve tried to recommend this to frankly EVERYONE I train! WRITE IT DOWN. If you write down for 2 weeks everything you eat and drink, it will MAKE you eat healthier – I’d put money on it. Either way, you’ll KNOW where you are starting/ what you really need to cut out/add in/ make changes in. *as an aside, if it helps to SHARE that list and be held accountable for that list daily, grab a friend/ask your trainer/ someone in your workout group, etc! Some people don’t want to be bothered to write it down (and it doesn’t need to be detailed). Just a LIST of times/foods/approx. portions. If you cannot be bothered to make this simplest of efforts, do not expect to miraculously end up eating better. Sorry to be harsh, but it is going to take a smidgeon of effort.
Third: What is the PURPOSE of the food. Ok, again, I’ve said this FOR-EEEEEEVER.. about fitness: “what is the purpose of this workout”? It might be VO2Max training, it might be an active recovery day, it might be hill/strength work etc, but it should have a purpose and you should be keenly aware of that purpose. So, for FOOD: every single thing you eat should have a purpose- what are the nutrients/fuel that you are GAINING from this! Don’t focus on what to AVOID- focus on what it BRINGS IN—what great things it gives you to nourish and fuel your body!
Fourth: MAKE IT NOURISHING. Make it look great on your plate. Look at the proportions on your plate- YES – over ½ should be veggies! Then lean protein and whole grains take up the rest! Make it SEASONAL! If it is winter- do roasted winter veggies over greens with lentils and some quinoa. Or make a nourishing seasonal soup to warm you and fill you! Food should be nourishing which means to be FILLED with great things! And make it fun! Follow 1-2 food blogs that you love! (ask me for recommendations- I follow some and even if I don’t use their meal plans, I can always even get a new great idea from a post or a picture!)
Final fifth “tidbit”: Always think of how you are pairing your foods/ even snacks. Every time you eat, you should be able to ask yourself 2 questions: 1. What is my fruit or vegetable? And 2. What is my protein or calcium to pair that off with. (for example- even a snack of an apple needs more—it needs a protein or calcium with it ---think a tbsp. of nut butter, or 2 egg whites along with it, or some crunch garbanzo beans, etc. ).
And… to those who are adamant that they cannot eat “fruit” on a diet, or fruit at a certain time of day, or a certain type of fruit. OMG I cannot even continue talking about that silliness—show me someone who is overweight because they ate too much fruit, fruit at the “wrong time of day,” or the “wrong type of fruit.” I cannot even.
And… one more… anyone doing a “3 day cleanse” a “10 day cleanse” ……. I cannot even… OMG WE HAVE KIDNEYS TO CLEANSE our bodies and we can EXERCISE!! A “cleanse” is a current day term for crash diet, we are not fooling ourselves.