Categories
Life Hacks

How to Stay Fit at Christmas

It’s that time of year again… where every temptation that you’ve ever known gets placed right in front of your face. I know I just finished my Christmas baking and damnnnnn they are so tasty.

If you have no discipline and willpower throughout the rest of the year how can you expect to resist during this time? And if you have developed a certain amount of willpower and discipline how can you become a little more lenient and enjoy yourself still?

I’ve struggled in previous years with both situations. One year I said screw my fitness and indulged like crazy feeling disgusted and ashamed going into the New Year. In other years I had been really strict and disciplined leaving me with constant cravings and not really enjoying the holidays in all their glory.

I have finally met myself in the middle and have a pretty solid strategy going into the holidays that leave me with a good healthy balance of keeping promises to myself and indulging in some delicious treats and boozy drinks.

First off PLAN AHEAD: Like I always say as quoted from my dear dad, “failing to prepare is preparing to fail”. Get your December calendar out and find those days or nights you have social events, nights off from work, date nights, or Christmas dinners. These will be your higher calorie days. Try to exercise on these days before your event so the food you consume can be used to repair tissue.

LOL at my dog Rue who wanted in on the picture

EVENT DAYS:

Do NOT starve yourself the day of the event! You can consciously eat a little less or smaller meals but if you fast before hand you are setting yourself up for the ultimate binge eat. Make sure to hit your protein and hydration targets that day. Fill up a big water bottle in the morning and sip on that throughout the day. Eat a sufficient amount of protein before your event having a protein shake or a bowl of greek yogurt are some ideas.

If going to a dinner or buffet pick foods higher in protein first before loading up on sugar, carbs, and fat. Higher protein (meats and cheeses are usually common) will keep you feeling full and will prevent you from over eating. Drink the water!!! If you can remember try to continuously drink water throughout the night. Mix a water in between each alcohol beverage to help you stay hydrated (and prevent hangovers).

On a normal basis I usually follow an 80/20 rule which means 80% of what you eat should be considered healthy (veggies, fruits, lean meats, whole grains, rice, dairy products such as yogurt, healthy fats etc). The other 20% can be whatever your heart desires that day. In December you can bend this a little bit do a 75/25 or even 70/30 rule and it won’t hurt you. On event days this rule will understandably be pretty much tossed out the window.

After indulging in some delicious food that everyone has made with love and BEFORE considering seconds… pause. Take a conscious second and listen to your body. Consider how it will feel to eat more and how it will feel to not eat more. Drink another glass of water then make your decision. There is no wrong decision here but try to stay self and body aware.

If there is dancing involved at your party… DO IT. Or start a dance party yourself! Dancing can help you burn some extra cals and get everyone else fired up.

NON EVENT DAYS:

Because it is Christmas time we usually want to continue to feel the cheer and enjoy Christmas treats pretty well every day of this month. And this is just fine! There is a way to go about it without overeating every single day.

First off start your days off with a good healthy breakfast. Try to include a source of protein and a healthy fat. Next decide what kind of unhealthy Christmas baking or treat your going to eat that day and work the rest of your meals around this. Again when you plan ahead you are preventing a lot of mindless munching and over indulgence because you will look forward to those pre planned treats.

If you are a flexible dieter. Punch in or minus the Christmas treats you have picked for the day first thing in the morning. Work your macros around these. Simple as that.

End each day with a herbal tea. There are many festive herbal teas out there that can taste amazing especially when sweetened with a little stevia. One herbal tea with stevia has zero calories but also adds to your daily hydration. Prior to going for that last Christmas cookie or handful of nuts and bolts have the tea first, then decide if you still want it. Again there is no wrong decision here but be conscious of whether you are hungry or thirsty. Listen to what will feel right for your mind and body. Be conscious!

Continue to exercise like you normally do throughout the year. Don’t give up on this just because it feels too cold to leave the house or you’re just too busy. There is always time even if that means a five minute body weight workout. Your mind and your mental health will thank you dearly if you just keep moving. Some people will choose to ramp up their exercise because of the extra goodies and others will dial it back. Whatever you choose, just choose to do it. Whether it be a walk on the treadmill with some Christmas tunes or doing some stretching on the matts, getting in the gym doors or getting off the couch is the most important part.

I know it is easier said than done when it comes to temptations and often you will end up going overboard on the food. It’s important to stay resilient. Just because you had one night where you lost all control doesn’t mean you might as well give up. You are just one meal, one tall glass of water, or one positive self affirmation away to get yourself back on track. Forgive yourself and move on.

Start each day with a positive attitude. Say things to yourself such as “today is a new day” or “today will be a great day”. With every new day you have new opportunities to prioritize your health and to create joy. Treat December one day at a time and enjoy the Christmas season. Do one Christmasy thing per day. Christmas doesn’t have to evolve only around food and drink.

Here is my list of fun Christmasy ideas (that don’t involve food):

Ice skating, hockey, sliding, building a snowman or snow fort, snow angels, skiing/snow shoeing, Christmas decorating and lights, walking tour of Christmas lights, Christmas markets or craft shows, Christmas concerts or shows, Christmas paint night, and Christmas crafts.

Wishing you all a very happy and cheerful Christmas season!

xoxo Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

What is the best diet out there?

I’m going to let you in on a big secret. Because in a world with hundreds of different fad diets and constant marketing schemes it’s hard to figure out what the best way to eat is. Especially if you have weight loss goals or health goals you want to achieve. Well here it is guys the number one, best diet out there, is… “sustainability”. So any diet that you can consistently adhere to over a long period of time is going to be the best diet for you. It’s true there is no one “best diet” that’s why sustainability is the answer. I will explain why in this blog.

The term “diet” is referring to eating a certain way in order to maintain current body weight OR be in a caloric deficit for weight loss. 

At some point, if you really wanted to make a change in your life or if you want to avoid gaining weight as you get older and your body changes or metabolism slows, you’re going to have to practice some discipline and maybe even sacrifice a few things (treats at work, late night snacks, extra sweets, careless eating, double dessert etc).

The harsh reality is that you cannot eat whatever you want all the time and expect to see positive changes in your body. Nobody can. Maybe when your young and you’re growing and your metabolism is fire. But reality is that we age and our bodies change and adjust.

According to BioLayne’s book – Fat Loss Forever: Sustainability involves six different things: 1) Cognitive restraint 2) Self Monitoring 3) Regular Exercise 4) Structured Programs 5) Focus on long term 6) Social Support

GOOD NEWS, you CAN find a way to enjoy food, to eat guilt free, to not be super restricting, to have a great social life, AND see changes or maintain your weight. The key is to find the BEST routine or balance that works for you and your life, that you can do LONG term. Not some hokey thing that a friend tried that she feels AMAZING on and won’t shut up about lol. The key here is YOU.

I’m sorry to tell you this but there is no “drink this magic weight loss tea and lose weight forever”, there is no “just try keto for a little bit and you will lose weight forever”. There may be things out there that cause weight loss really quickly BUT there is NO QUICK FIX THAT LASTS. All great things take time people!

Everyone is different, has different habits, different lifestyles and different bodies therefore what works for one person may not work for another. Some people find sustainability in carb cycling, for some it’s counting macros, for some it’s using portion containers, for some it’s intermittent fasting, and for some it’s just pure listening to their bodies and recognizing hunger and practicing will power. The trick is finding what works best for you.

When I first made a change with the way I was eating I seen results fairly quickly about six weeks or so in. I was able to sustain this way of eating for about a year and a half and then had to change up my diet and this is what happened:

At first carb cycling worked really well for me I enjoyed it at the time, I found it easy to do, I always had two days of the week that worked well to do low carb and enjoyed mixing up things so I got a variety of different foods without the guilt associated. I enjoyed high fat foods on low carb days bring on the cheese, avocados, and coconut oil mmm. When it changed over to high carb day, pasta babyyy. Because I seen results and continued to feel great this kept me motivated to sustain this diet. Like I said a year and a half.

Then I started working full time eight hour shifts. This meant stretches of seven night shifts in a row, or two weeks of day shifts where I was constantly on my feet burning energy like crazy. I found it really difficult to do low carb days when I would have to be up and awake all night. I also found I didn’t have enough energy on my day shifts when I ate low carb and didn’t have enough days off to mix the low carb days in then. So I decided to stop carb cycling and just tried to continue to eat healthy. 

I didn’t have the knowledge to expect changes with my body. I thought because I was still eating healthy there would be no negative repercussions. What I failed to realize is the volume of food I was now eating. When I was carb cycling there would be two to three days of the week where I would cut out a whole macronutrient. This meant that all the calories I would get from carbohydrates are essentially cut out on those days. So this caused me to lose weight because I was in a caloric deficit every week.

When I changed my way of eating or “diet” I ended up in a calorie surplus again because I was now eating all those extra calories from carbs everyday of the week. Eventually I realized what was happening and decided to start “flexible dieting”. Which is essentially the same as counting macros. I had to trial different calorie and macro counts for my body over time, to find a good number that my body didn’t want to gain weight or lose muscle on. (For more information on flexible dieting see my blog post – Flexible Dieting).

But I stayed positive even with the unwanted changes and STUCK with what felt right for my body and over TIME because I SUSTAINED this new way of eating my body came back to where it was and over more time became even leaner and stronger because I had patience, I made little tweaks here and there, but most importantly I stuck with it. I did NOT give up. I sustained this way of eating.

If your GOAL is to lose weight, over time, as you lose the weight and your body changes you will have to adjust the volume that you eat as well because your metabolism is going to adjust to your new muscle mass, new overall weight, and new activity levels etc. Each one of our individualized bodies is essentially “pre set” for a certain weight, meaning our bodies are programmed to be a certain weight based off of a number of factors including genetics, your nutritional habits, your metabolism, and age at the time etc. This means your body does NOT want to change. It will fight you if you try to lose weight. It will change it’s way of processing by adapting your metabolism or how your body burns energy will adjust. So making little adjustments in how MUCH you eat and how much protein you consume will be important.

But overall whatever lifestyle you have decided on that is working for you will be important to stick to long term. And if you find it’s not working for your life anymore you need to fully expect to maybe gain a bit of weight back until you can sustain a new routine long term that works.

Your best bet if you are very serious about wanting to lose weight is to find yourself a qualified and competent trainer. One that understands there is no one size fits all or one way of being. Find a trainer that can help you find the perfect routine or balance so you can keep going.

If your not interested in getting a trainer than the best tip I can give you is start small. Make little changes and don’t try to do any of these extreme fad diets that will just set you up for failure. Trial new things that you can work into your life and make a habit of. A good example is drink more water. Drink one extra glass of water everyday for two weeks until you start incorporating another habit. Stick with things! And most importantly be patient.

Your new amazing lifestyle awaits!

Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

How to Recover from a Night Out

We have all been in that place where we went a little overboard on food or bevies and are left in the morning with feelings of food shame, guilt, sometimes disgust, and sometimes a really bad hangover.

I’ve been in this place more times than I can count. It was all fine and dandy when I didn’t have any big goals to achieve and my values were essentially placed on just having the best time I can.

Now that I’m older and more mature I will admit that no matter how good of a time I am having in a drunken state, it just isn’t worth the feelings I get the next day if I have drank too much and unconsciously binge ate double my caloric intake. I will also admit that sometimes I slip up and it still happens. 

Because Alcohol will do that to me! If I have even just ONE to many it can lead to me chasing a happy drunken state that is only attainable by drinking more and more and more. It’s lead to times of extreme embarrassment for me, times of throwing up or making myself do so, times of not remembering the events of the night even. 

These are just experiences I don’t care to have anymore but in the event that I make a lapse in judgement or lose sight of what my new found adult and more mature values are I do know how to recover from the event. At the end of the day mistakes happen and we have to learn to forgive ourselves for them and more importantly move on and not dwell over them. 

I’m going to call this idea my oopsie hangover protocol in which I follow each time I wake up with a dang hangover praying it’s not going to take me out completely! This can also work for a food hangover as well if you’re not a drinker but binged on way to much unhealthy food.

1.Electrolytes and Hydrate

Although you probably can’t stand the sight of food or have a full belly from the overindulgence the night before it is important to replenish your body of what was eliminated after you “broke the seal”. Not only water but you need the salt especially to balance it out. If your only battling a food hangover than the electrolytes are not as necessary but the water IS! If it was the booze and you can’t get a good hearty salty but well balanced breakfast in (which is what I recommend), the least you can do is get a Gatorade in or an electrolyte pack. Other ideas include chicken broth, orange juice, or start munching on a jar of pickles. Whatever isn’t going to make you throw up and will get some salt and hydration back into your body. The best hangover Breaky includes eggs, bacon or sausage, and toast or a good breakfast sandwich.

2.Nutrition

After you’ve had your replenishing breakfast try to focus on getting your nutrition back on track. Include some health in there like fresh fruit and veggies. Try to consume a little less calories that day if you can, to balance what you may over did the night before but DO NOT starve yourself. Eat small frequent meals in order to avoid becoming hungry. 

3.Keep Moving

After getting some sustenance, try and get some fresh air. Although this may be extremely difficult sometimes laying in bed or on the couch makes things SO much worse. Go out for a walk, go shopping at the mall, or if your brave enough go to the gym and walk lightly on the treadmill with some music or podcast, keep yourself busy and distracted from the agony. After you start to feel a little better THAN you can do some Netflix and chilling but if that hangover starts to creep back get your ass up and move!

4.Get Wet

If your by a body of water or a pool, swimming can be a great hangover cure. If you don’t have this luxury just a nice Luke warm shower will do. Clean yourself up, dust yourself off, and bring a little dignity back to yourself by practicing personal hygiene. Oh and brush your teeth too! 

5.Caffiene

If your a regular coffee drinker, AFTER you have nourished yourself and replenished some hydration into your body try a coffee to get rid of that pounding headache. This will help with any Caffiene withdrawals you may be experiencing along with the other hell that’s going on.

6.Forgive yourself

I find writing down my mistakes, where I messed up, and how it made me feel super beneficial in moving on. Sometimes we let these mess ups get the best of us. Sometimes we decide to quit on ourselves and give up on our goals even. If you can hone in on your feelings and reevaluate your goals and why you made them in the first place, it’ll really help get you back on track and back to feeling good!

Much love

Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

The Elimination Diet

The Elimination Diet is a process of eliminating common trigger foods to discover if you are intolerant to specific foods or if certain foods cause unwanted symptoms. The elimination diet can be used for a whole vary of symptoms for example, excess gas, bloating, or GI disturbances, eczema, psoriasis, or acne, lethargy, or allergy type symptoms such as itching or inflammation etc. 

The elimination diet is NOT used to diagnose chronic disorders so please seek medical advise or see your family physician if you have any severe chronic symptoms. The elimination diet is mainly used if you suspect that something in your diet is causing you discomfort.

I journaled my process and experience doing the elimination diet and will use my journey as an example. My reason was to find if I had a trigger food causing my clinically diagnosed eczema. So yes I did seek medical attention and have been diagnosed with eczema. I had tried all the prescription creams suggested, and tips my doctor had gave me and NOTHING worked. Hense my reason for resorting to the elimination diet. 

The Process of eliminating: 

Create a list of all suspicious foods. If you are unsure of what could possibly causing a symptom for you here is a list of common trigger foods:

So all these foods will have to be eliminated from your diet for up to two weeks… Sounds crazy I know especially if doing a full blown elimination phase but it is possible to do it without starving I promise. They key is in the planning!

First piece of planning would be to make a list of all the foods you CAN eat. You may have to do some research on what has gluten in it or what has dairy etc. These two are especially tricky because they’re hidden in a lot of foods you wouldn’t think. Here is an example of my list:

Next step is to meal plan. Think of things you can make to have on hand and ready because the hardest part will be when your hungry and feel like you have nothing to cook or have to eat. Figure out what kind of quick snacks you can have. Also figure out your protein sources as adequate protein will be important for feeling satiated and aiding in bodily processes. 

Next plan out your time frame. Some research will say you have to do it for a month some will say one week, but in my opinion this will be different for everyone and it’ll depend on your specific symptoms and how severe they are, AND how long it takes for them to subside. I planned for two weeks on the diet with reintroduction of one food item at a time after that. 

Next will be to create a journal or get a little notebook and write down what your baseline symptoms are so you can monitor if they are getting better or worse with eliminating foods. Another option would be to take pictures if problem is external. From my log I noted symptoms starting to get better after just three days. 

That being said symptoms kind of fluctuated after that. They would seem to get better then I would have a flare up, then they would get better again. This lasted for just up to the two week marker but in my log noted there were food items I consumed that were “cheat” items I was unaware had elimination things in them. Example had some vodka and didn’t realize it had gluten in it lol Hand did flare up but subsided two days later. 

Reintroducing:

By the two weeks it appeared my symptoms were pretty well gone just some scarring from where my eczema patches were. Therefore I decided to start reintroducing. My plan was to reintroduce one thing at a time and give each food item two days to react. I wanted to start with my biggest suspicions first. What I found is I had almost an instant reaction right away when consuming a “trigger food”. I gave it a day to see how severe the reaction would be and then if severe enough I would eliminate it again.

I then moved on to the next item. The second item I had no reactions therefore kept consuming it and monitored. If I made it a full day with no reactions to the item I considered it okay to eat. 

It was the third big item that I really screwed up on because I lost compliance. I started cheating and consuming little small amounts of the first item which I KNEW caused triggers. This is where will power has to be SO strong. Even me who can turn down anything just couldn’t obtain from certain cravings. Maybe because I felt too restricted? 

Anyways I did come back from the cheats and kept going with reintroducing foods. In the end all my symptoms did go away, my skin cleared up and I stayed away from my trigger foods for a good month and a bit. Eventually I reintroduced my trigger foods back and my symptoms remained gone. Not sure if it was the change of weather or if something switched systemically in my body. 

I know this won’t be the case with everyone and that it is possible you may have to stay away from trigger foods for life. It will depend how much your symptoms effect your life or bother you. You must decide how much quality of life you have with either eating these foods and having discomfort or vice versa, staying away from those foods and having other options with a higher quality of living. 

Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

How to Safely Lose Weight 101

1) First thing you must do is come up with a plan that you feel you can stick to because CONSISTENCY is #1!!! Yes you can make a plan to lose weight very quickly but if you do not stick to that plan long term or do not progress you WILL 100% gain it back and sometimes more. So your plan must be sustainable and YOU must be accountable in staying consistent.

When deciding on a plan just ask yourself, would I be able to do this forever? This might mean creating a few healthier habits. When something becomes a habit then it’s easier to adhere too but you have to find a way, first to grind it out until the habit is in place. 

How do you create a habit? Repetition, repetition, repetition. Just keep going. Just do it. Tell yourself it will be worth it in the long term because IT WILL.

2)Drink more water! You NEED to drink half your body weight in ounces per day MINIMUM. More if you’re exercising or sweating. One of many things water is important for is thermoregulation. Thermoregulation plays a big role in weight loss so drinking more water is SO very important. Just do it. Find a way. I know you can.

3) Exercise alone is not enough to lose weight and keep it off. Nutrition plays an even bigger factor. In order to lose weight you must balance energy expenditure and energy consumed

Energy Expenditure is the energy we burn off in a day. If we burn off more than we consume we lose weight.

Energy consumed is what we eat to provide our body with energy. If we consistently eat more than we burn off we store weight or “fat”.


Plain and Simple.

Manipulating energy expenditure:

There are four components to increase energy expenditure therefore if your goal is to lose weight you have to increase one of the four categories in which energy is expended.

  1. Increase lean body mass – through resistance training (lifting weights)  you can increase muscle mass which in turn increases your metabolism burning more calories at rest.
  2. Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis – which is all the activity or movement you do in a day that isn’t exercise such as work, clean the house, chew, stand up and sit down, grab the remote, walk from car to the grocery store… you get the picture. 
  3. Thermogenetic Food – Eating foods higher in protein and fibre. Protein and Fibre take longer and are more complex to digest in the body which in turn burn more calories and help you to feel more full. Protein aids in building muscle and used for many other functions in the body therefore is not EASILY stored as fat if over consumed (but can in excess). 
  4. Exercise

Manipulating energy consumed:

  1. Track what your eating or atleast become more AWARE of the calorie content in what your consuming.
  2. Choose foods that are lower in calories.
  3. Increased fibre which has lower calorie content but simultaneously makes you feel fuller so you eat less.
  4. If it fits your lifestyle well, consider intermittent fasting as it lessens the amount of hours in the day you eat causing you to eat less (although be aware of  the risks of binge eating)
  5. Chew gum, brush teeth, stay hydrated (sometimes we think we’re hungry because our mouths are dry or we are dehydrated)
  6. Find a herbal tea you like plain (no sugar or milk) 
  7. Utilize calorie free sweeteners such as stevia
  8. Stay busy!! (I don’t know about you but I eat when I’m bored and so do most people)

So to sum all this up in order to lose weight put plain and simple:

1-Don’t try to erratically change but plan a lifestyle you could adhere to forever. This will keep you consistent.

2-Stay Hydrated

3-Manipulate energy expenditure by building muscle, increase daily movements, eat foods higher in protein and fibre, and/or exercise. 

4-Eat less by becoming self aware of what you are consuming in a day.

And lastly BE PATIENT! Significant weight loss will not happen over night, might not happen over the next week, might not happen over the next month. But if you are PATIENT and CONSISTENT it WILL happen!

You GOT this!

Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

How to Start Meditating


Meditating can be done in many different forms. Most people think it’s sitting cross legged with their thumb and middle finger together placed on the knees, humming with their eyes closed. Most people believe meditating is shutting your brain right off.

Well both of these concepts are wrong. It is impossible to just shut your brain off. Where people get the idea of shutting your brain off is from buddhist monks who can channel their brains to reach enlightenment which takes months to years to achieve. Not to mention they practice this all day everyday. This is just not realistic for most people to achieve therefore we should be practicing meditation just for the health benefits it provides.

It has been scientifically proven that meditation can rewire your brain to change your way of thinking and even your way of feeling. We all understand that it has amazing benefits so how can we start?

Like creating any habit trying to do too much too fast usually causes you to fail. The way I started doing it consistently was a 28 day meditation challenge. I did five minutes a day for one week. Then ten minutes a day, the next week. Then fifteen, then twenty. I got into the habit of sitting down once a day to get it done. 

Setting a timer is beneficial for me as well. Especially if your in a time crunch not only will it help you fit it into your day, it will take your mind off checking the time to see how long it has been. Setting a timer takes that part of the thinking out of the equation so you can focus more on breathing and getting into a good space.

After going beyond five minutes I found five minutes not to be enough and a really short time to get in all the relaxing breathing I wanted. But reality is sometimes we only have five minutes a day. It is better than nothing at all. So I have continued my practice. Sometimes I get in a full twenty minutes and sometimes only five or ten but it is now a habit for me.

When I first started I would just breathe and let my mind wander. I later added in some visualization such as going to my happy place, or seeing myself achieving a goal, or even seeing my family or friends who are way too far away and letting my heart feel full. I then learned different breathing techniques and what the energy centers were and how to bless them. 

But it all started with five minutes a day.

Here is how I usually start my practice a breathing technique by Dr.Joe Dispenza. It is only five breathes and usually gives me an amazing sensation of relaxation and good energy. 

Breathe in and at the same time draw your abdomen in and do a kegel exercise (should feel like your holding in your pee). It will feel like your squeezing everything from your private parts to your belly button, all while holding your breathe. Hold for five seconds. Without letting go of your breathe breath in as big as you can visualize your breath travelling all the way up your spine through the back of your skull to the top of your head. Exhale really slowly feeling complete relaxation. Repeat x5.

After this exercise I usually let my mind and energy lead the way. Sometimes I focus on healing a part of me that isn’t 100%. Sometimes I focus on sending someone love who I feel truly needs it. Sometimes I come up with a great idea and spend the rest of the day working on that!

Everyone needs to start doing it. There is no excuse or reason why you can’t because it is for everyone!

Start with just five minutes a day and keep yourself accountable to that for two weeks. Then see where it takes you!

Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

Protein and Fiber

Increased protein and fiber in your diet can lead to weight loss. There are a couple reasons why…

Protein

Protein is a macronutrient created by little building blocks called amino acids. These building blocks help build and repair your tissues and organs. Protein helps build and repair your bones, connective tissue, muscles, hair and nails to name a few.

Protein accompanied with regular resistance training promotes more lean body mass or lean tissue. The more lean body mass you acquire the higher your metabolism will be, burning more calories at rest therefore promoting weight loss.

Recommendations: Range is anywhere between (2.2-3g) per kg of body weight and even more if you are over the age of 50.

Fiber 101

Soluble vs. Insoluble

Fiber is not well absorbed by the body but releases gas and very little calories. Having very little calories fiber ALSO helps you to feel full. This means you eat less essentially promoting weight loss.

Soluble fibre (oats, flaxseed, beans, apples, asparagus) absorbs water turning it to mush. The mush is then digested by bacteria in the gut. The gut bacterias job is to process waste and help produce vitamins. The bacteria also turns fiber into usable energy increasing your metabolism therefore aiding in weight loss.

Soluble fiber slows down digestion of other nutrients such as carbohydrates and also decreases fat absorption by blocking fats that would be digested and absorbed. This process aids in weight management.

Soluble fiber also helps regulate hunger hormones again causing you to eat less therefore aids in weight loss.

Insoluble fibre (seeds and skin of fruit, whole wheat bread, brown rice) does NOT absorb water. It is not digested at all because it does not turn to mush but remains unchanged as it moves through the digestive tract. It’s main benefit is to prevent constipation.

Both are needed and important. Both can help with weight management. For men 30-38g and for women 21-25g per day is recommended. 

Both Protein and Fiber

Protein and fiber both have a high thermic effect of food, meaning the body essentially burns more calories to break these foods down. This increases your metabolism which can aid in weight loss.

Protein and fiber both help you feel satiated or “full” therefore causing you to eat less. Eating less with regular exercise will aid in weight loss.

I hope I have provided enough reasonable evidence for you to increase protein and fibre in your diet!

Frecklefit

Categories
Life Hacks

Self Regulation

When bae leaves your weakness out to stare at you every time you walk by…

I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t always have the best control when delicious snacks are in front of me. Even after I have already had my healthy dinner and know that I am full. Some snacks just get me.

For some people it’s salty and some like me it’s sweet chocolatey goodness with a little crunch. While it is okay to enjoy unhealthy snacks 20% of the time when following the 80/20 rule, it can be hard to stay under that number if you’re surrounded by these things all the time.

Snacking here and there between meals can account for well over 50% of your total intake if you’re not careful. Little bits and bites really add up. So try to stick to just your planned meals.

Before I moved in with my boyfriend I used to not buy anything that would tempt me. Not having tempting snacks around really helped BUT once you start living with a snack junkie or kids even it’s just not a possibility. This is when you have to rely on will power and staying strong! So hard to do right?

This frigen ice cream though…

We all get cravings regardless of if we are hungry or not. So how do we regulate ourselves? How do we keep our cravings at bay? How do we just say no?

Self regulation, sustainability, and consistency are the MOST important factors when following a diet, trying to lose weight, or trying to improve your health. So if you’re ready to make a change in your life you MUST look at these three things when deciding how you are going to go about sticking to a plan.

Here are my strategies for resisting those unwanted extra calories:

  1. Follow the 80/20 rule! Allow yourself a treat everyday. Eat whole, good, nutrient dense food 80% of the time, get your protein in, and plan for what sweet or salty snack you will have that day. If you allow yourself a “daily hug” you will feel less restricted and have a better relationship with food.
  2. Drink enough water! Sometimes are bodies get confused between hunger and thirst so sometimes all we need is a little extra water to feel full and satisfied. I know it’s very hard to choose water when you got a chocolate cake sitting in front of you… But all you have to do is reach for that water bottle or cup and start chugging. Take a good ten gulps of water at a time or drink from a straw to get more in. If afterwards you cave and dig into that cake at least you got more water in.
  3. Brush your teeth. This will change your taste buds and palette. It just may throw that craving right out the window as well. Just try it. It’s worked for me many times.
  4. Make a cup of herbal tea or coffee. Sometimes a nice warm cup of something is enough to bring about those satisfying cozy feelings that comfort snacks also bring. Sweeten your hot drink with stevia rather than sugar. My favourite herbal tea is a good chocolatey chai or peppermint. I’m also a coffee fein so coffee for me is like my dessert sometimes I get the same happy rush without the extra calories.
  5. For the sweet lovers, find a protein powder you love. Experiment and sample different things to find a protein powder that speaks your love language. Rather than reaching for the sweet treat, mix up a protein pudding or blend the protein so it has a creamy texture and enjoy this instead.
  6. For the salty lovers, find a healthier option. I buy my guy rice chips in the flavours that he likes and he has really enjoyed eating these rather than chips. They’re lighter, there are many flavours, and he just feels better and less guilty when snacking. Another great option is air popped popcorn!
  7. Work on your mental game. There will be so many times when you cave and give in to the cravings. I know I do. It takes practice to develop mental strength. On the days you overcome the cravings really embrace the feelings you have related to overcoming this. Let the pride soak in, let the good feelings of growth and improvement flow through you. Write your good feelings down so that next time you’re faced with a temptation you can go back and remember how good you felt sticking to your plan. Reread that journal entry you wrote and remind yourself that is how you would rather feel than guilty or ashamed.
  8. Forgive yourself!! You are not going to do yourself any good by wallowing in your “snacksident” the next day. If you continue to shame yourself for that you will be more likely to feel like giving up on yourself. Instead, you can journal your feelings, you can let it motivate you to do some extra gym work or cardio the next day, or you can whip up a healthy breakfast and drink some extra water the next day. Use your mistakes as motivation and to learn.

Everyone caves and gives in and devours way to many calories than they intended to. It’ll be a lifelong back and forth battle, it is for everyone. Stay strong and know you are NOT alone! You CAN become mentally stronger. You can improve on your will power if you believe you can.

Frecklefit

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Life Hacks

The Human Body an Adaptation Machine

The human body is incredible at remembering, adapting, and listening. It’s how humans evolved and persevered through the world around us changing. The problem with having this adaptable complex machine as our body, is it can hinder our progress in the gym. When we workout the same way all the time our muscles adapt to these movements, we get stronger, and our muscle memory kicks in. This means the movements we’ve always done get easier and we start to plateau. On the extreme end we can even go backwards even though we’re still working out. This is caused by not complimenting our workouts with proper nutrition.

The same concept goes with our nutrition. If we eat the same things all the time were consistently only getting the same vitamins and minerals and could potentially be nutrient deficient in certain areas. 

It’s hard when we get into a good routine that works well and that we enjoy knowing we eventually have to switch things up. But there are always ways to tweak, adapt, and progress while still enjoying our program.

Not only can us humans adapt but we’re also ridiculously smart as well and always find a way around problems that may hinder us from growing and moving forward. 

The best way to change things up is obviously to seek out a professional such as a personal trainer. But if this isn’t an option for you then find new workouts do your research on new ideas and new movements. There’s tons out there on the internet or youtube. 

Strive to change up your workouts every 5-6 weeks. Mix up your nutrients or meals every week and add lots of variety to your food. Experiment with new vegetables and don’t always buy the same fruits. Try different protein sources including plant based protein. There are also tons of great different and unique grains out there. 

Be in charge of the adaptable machine that your body is and you will continue to make progress!

Frecklefit

*DM or e-mail me for personalized workout plans*

Categories
Life Hacks

Meal Plan like a Pro

I have mastered a pretty great strategy for getting groceries in an organized manner while saving money as well. When we stay organized, it’s much easier to eat healthier and save precious minutes out of the day. A lot of meal planning strategies out there plan for you to eat the same dang thing for lunch everyday on Monday… chicken and broccoli. On Tuesday…chicken and broccoli. Oh yea it’s hump day what are we having?… chicken and broccoli. 

What we know now about nutrition is it is important to get a wide variety of nutrients. This means mixing up the vegetables you eat and mixing up your protein sources, and your grains etc. Yes it may be easier to eat the same thing all the time but mixing things up can be quite easy as well. 


This is how I meal plan and what my time strategy looks like.

Every Two Weeks:

The big grocery haul:

Every two weeks I believe is doable to get a big load of groceries. Make sure you pick a time when you HAVE the time to browse and make sure you get everything on your list (more on the list below). This haul is going to include 2 weeks worth of your proteins plus all the produce and other list items you will need for the week.

Here is what is normally on my list for proteins (depending what’s on sale):

4-5 packs of ground turkey

1-2 big pack of chicken breasts 

Large flat of eggs

2-3 large cartons of egg whites

1-2 packages of turkey bacon

Big pack of deli meat (nitrate free)

Here are things I sometimes buy to mix it up:

1 big chuck roast

Fish

Chicken thighs

Package of frozen shrimp or shrimp ring

Extra lean ground beef

Once you get home portion out your meats into what you would use for a single meal. Then decide what you will use before it expires and throw everything else into your freezer or deepfreeze.

Every Week:

Meal Plan – write out on your calendar or day planner what you will make for a big meal each day of the week (based off what meat or protein you have). Write out things you might want to bake or any snack ideas you have in mind. Then write out some ideas for lunches. Take into consideration if you will have leftovers to bring or not. Make a list of ingredients you will need for each recipe and write out the rest of the groceries you need (oils, spices, bread etc). This process should take half hour MAX. If you need inspiration for meals pull out your cookbooks, visit pinterest, or look at all the yummy recipes on my site. 

Shop – Once or twice a week for groceries. Using your list. Buy more produce then you think you need (you’ll end up consuming more of it) and check your produce well at the store. Buy on sale produce to save money. 

Food Prep – Go through your produce and decide on things you want to snack on and cut those up and put into containers. **If you end up with produce that’s going to expire at home prep it/cut it up and freeze it! Most produce items freeze well. Cut up veg you know you will need for the next day such as stir fry veg or potatoes. Store these in containers in the fridge for an easy grab and cook. 

Everyday: 

Think a day in advance for meals especially if you know you will be busy the following day. Pull out things from the freezer you need for tomorrow. Prep tomorrow’s produce the night before and store in containers so it’s all ready to cook. This avoids getting hangry and eating whatever is available. If you have a busy couple days prep two days in advance so your ready to cook. Utilizing a slow cooker as well is great for busy days.

Remember your lunches. Make them the night before and if it’s a meal that’s not going to go soggy or bad make a few at one time so you have 2-3 lunches ready all in one night. A few examples are cold deli meat wraps, containers of berries, yogurt parfaits (granola on the side).

Check your expiry dates or check on the produce in your fridge. If things look like there going to spoil soon push the meal you were going to cook those “on the edge” items to the next day. Or you can cut up/prep and throw into the freezer.

In Closing

At the end of the day what makes things easier is planning and writing down your ideas. Making lists. Buying things in bulk. Planning the night before or in advance. It may seem to take more time but if you trust the process and stay consistent with planning and organizing it will actually SAVE you time. Especially when you master it. But mastering anything takes practice. Hope you find this information helpful!

Frecklefit