Thursday, April 28, 2011

What I Ate Today

I get questions on what I eat each day, so I decided it could be useful to see an example day. If you follow my blog, you know that I eat 5-6 meals a day and eat every 2 1/2-3 hours. When you take a look, I hope you notice a few things. Heavier carbohydrates (oatmeal, banana) were eaten earlier in the day because they are slower burning and don't spike your blood sugar. This regulates your metabolism and keeps you in the "fat burning" zone throughout the day. Also notice I eat protein with every meal. As much as I am working out, I am breaking down muscle tissue and need to repair it with eating a lot of protein. I also am getting in healthy fats each day (nuts, seeds, etc.). Vegetables need to be eaten at least 3 times a day in my opinion. I also try to not use too many heavy sauces, and if things taste bland I will add balsamic vinegar or mustard.
Today I had very limited options (I am moving this week and all of my food is in a mini fridge shared with my roommate). I am stuck with little options, but made it work and still packed all my meals for when I was out and about today. If I can do this YOU CAN TOO! It takes prep time, but when you have food packed and don't have to go on the hunt for something healthy it just feels great! Everyday working towards my goals. Eating like this is a part of my lifestyle, and I enjoy the way I feel when I am living it like this:)

Sample Day
What I ate Thursday April 28, 2011

Meal 1: 6am
Cup of COFFEE!!!!!!!!!!!
1/2 C. oats
5 Egg whites
6 Strawberries
1 Tbsp flaxseed meal

Meal 2:
Protein drink with water

Meal 3:
Big salad-
Romaine lettuce
Sliced tomato
Green bell pepper
4 oz. Extra lean ground turkey
1.5 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

Meal 4: 3:00pm
5 egg whites
Asparagus spears

Meal 5: 6:00 pm
4 oz. extra lean ground turkey
Steamed broccoli (about 1 1/2 c.)
Some walnuts and almonds (small handful)
Some mustard (maybe 1/2 tbsp)

Meal 6: 9:00 pm
Protein drink with water

ALSO: I make sure to drink about a gallon of water a day!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Today's Leg Workout

Here is an example of a leg workout. Today I am focusing on building my quads and calves. I am going to use a relatively heavy weight, to where my last two reps of each set are a struggle. Hopefully, showing you a little of what I do in the gym can give you some ideas!

Legs: (Quads & Calves)
Smith Machine Squats 3 X 15
Hack squat 3 X 15, or last set to failure
Seated Leg Extensions 3 X 10, last set a drop set reducing weight
Box jumps 3x25
Walking Barbell Lunges3x20, superset with adductor 3 X 20
Standing Calf Raises 3 X 20
Seated Calf Raises 3 X 15 (pause at the top)
CARDIO: 1 mile run

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

What's For Breakfast? 10 Simple Morning Meals

It's no secret that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. You should eat within an hour upon waking (I wake up and hit the kitchen right away). Some people aren't hungry in the morning, but that just means you ate too much food too late. Your body has gone at least 7 hours without food, and you need to eat to get your metabolism going in the A.M.
Here are some breakfast tips that start off the morning right and balanced! Make sure to eat your fruit in the morning rather than the evening (spikes your blood sugar). Also it is IMPORTANT to eat protein starting off your day, also add in some healthy fats and complex carbohydrates to get you going!
Here are some ideas!

1/2 C. Oats
5 Egg whites
Small piece of fruit or berries

1 Slice low sodium ezekiel toast
1 Tbsp. Unsalted natural peanut butter
5 egg whites

1/2 C. Oats
1 Scoop protein powder

1 c. Fat free greek yogurt
1 Tbsp. Flaxseed meal
Some nuts

Protein pancakes
1/3 c. Oats
1/3 C. Cottage cheese
3 Egg whites
Blend, and put on frying pan
Serve with berries or fruit

Protein shake
Scoop of protein powder
1 c. Unsweetened almond milk

Egg white scramble
5 egg whites
Grilled veggies (my fave mushrooms, onion, tomato)
1/3 c. oats

1/4 c. Ezekiel original cereal
1/2 c. Greek yogurt
Berries and nuts

Puffed wheat cereal
1/2 c. Greek yogurt

2 rice cakes
1/2 c. Greek yogurt

Monday, April 25, 2011

Choose Your Lifestyle.

Often times people ask me why I workout so much and eat so healthy. First thing I think is why do they choose to eat bad and not workout? The point is we are all different. I don't expect everyone to workout as often as I do, or eat the way I do. I get questioned a lot, so I decided to be open with everyone and explain myself. I love the feeling I get when I am eating healthy and working out regularly. I noticed, I don't feel very sluggish, people compliment me saying my hair looks shinier, and I look happier. For me, eating healthy and working out is just a part of my lifestyle.
That being said, I want to make it a point that not everyone has to eat or workout the way I do. I post tips and motivation just for the people interested. I know it doesn't come easy to a lot of people. BUT just think about it. I know a lot about these topics because 1. I grew up being an athlete 2. Both my parents are athletes (Dad is a world champion cyclist and my mom is a P.E. teacher) and 3. I am a Kinesiology major (I study this for fun).
I want everyone who reads my blog to know, you don't have to eat perfect and always be on a diet. Spend hours and hours in the gym everyday, that is not the point of this blog. Spend time working on you! For me, that is going to the gym, going on a walk, going to yoga, reading, etc. Just taking time to focus on your life is extremely important. I have found that many people (I used to be one of them) get lost in the business of life and what we think we are supposed to do; we lose ourselves in the process.
My tip: take your life back. Work on you, do things for you. You don't have to do most of the things you do each day. You don't have to go out as often as you do, your friends will understand. I think it's time we all get our health back, and change our lifestyles. Spend some time working on yourself; it feels great!!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

If You Only Have 3 Days To Train

For everyone that reads my blog, I understand how busy we can all be. Just because you are unable to go to the gym 5-6 times a week DOESN'T mean you can't be SUPER fit and feel amazing about your body. As I have said numerous times, diet is key. If you only have the time a few days a week to train just make sure your diet is clean and I promise you will still be able to stay on track.
If you only have 3 days a week to train you can workout using a push/pull split ( one day chest, shoulders and triceps; back and biceps the next; and legs the last day). I am aware that not everyone loves fitness and or the gym as much as I, but that doesn't mean you should ignore your health all together. Get to the gym at least three days a week and make sure you are lifting weights.
While lifting you can start with 3 sets of 10 repetitions at about 80% effort, the last few repitions should be difficult and if they aren't you need to increase the weight being lifted. Take about 2 minutes rest in between each set. If you get used to 3x10 you can change it up to 3 sets of 12 repetitions at a lesser weight (about 70%). With the decreased weight you should also decrease your rest time (about 1 minute). Keep switching up your sets, reps, and rest so your body doesn't accomodate and hit a plateau. Try changing the number or reps by going heavier some days with less reps and lighter other days with higher reps.
After you are finished with your weights for the day, if you are in a hurry jump on the treadmill and get a quick HIIT workout in. They last only about 20 minutes but keep your body burning fat for 24 hours+. If you have a little more time hop on the stairmaster for 40 minutes (I know its killer but the results are worth it).
My advice if you only have those 3 days, HIT IT HARD. You will have plenty of recovery on your days off so you can go "BALLS TO THE WALLS" and sweat it out while you are there.
Don't hold back, and when you step in to the gym make sure you are "gettin it". No one matters but you once you are there; work on your goals and don't hold back! Keep your workouts INTENSE!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

High Intensity Interval Training

On a daily basis I see people at the gym day in and day out, and I notice many tend to stick to one cardio machine. I also notice that even though they may spend up to an hour on that machine, I don't see their body change over time. I don't think enough people engage in HIIT training, so I for those of you who aren't familiar I am going to introduce the idea to you. HIIT training is sprint training- usually they last less than 20 minutes- HIIT workouts work the cardiovascular system and is a fat burning workout. I would suggest trying to incorporate HIIT training in your weekly workouts about 2-3 times a week AFTER weight training. On the bright side, it's a quicker workout and you'll be out of the gym in no time.

Some different HIIT workouts on the treadmill
5 min warm-up- 1 min level 9,1 min level 5 (for 20 mins)

3 – 5 minutes warm-up, 1 minute moderate or high intensity followed by 1 minute low intensity (repeat 6 - 8 times), 3– 5 minutes cool down
30 second brisk walk – 30 sec sprint (7x)

5 min warm-up – 1 min high intensity, 4 min recovery – 5 min cool down (4x)

Run 12 mph 30 sec – walk 2 min (7x)

3 min walk – 30 sec fast run – 1 min walk – 30 sec sprint (8x)

Sprint 30-40 sec – walk or jog 1 min (20 min)

20 minutes changing speed – 4 mph 60 sec – 8 mph 60 sec

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Thea's New Favorite Meal: Homemade Bouillabaisse

I am OBSESSED with Bouillabaisse. Every menu I can find it on, I order it (rare I find it). For those of you who aren't familiar, it is a french seafood stew. It can be prepared many different ways, but I am making up my own "eat clean version". It tastes absolutely delicious and I am super proud of this recipe. YUMMY!
P.S. Did I mention how SUPER healthy it is!?!

4 Oz. Talapia
4 Oz. Shrimp
1 Lb. Mussels
1 Lb. Clams
1 Can Clam Juice
1 Can No Salt Added Diced Tomatoes
1 Tbsp. Fennel
1/2 Chopped Large Onion
1/2 Head Garlic Diced
2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, onion, and fennel and saute until just brown for about 5 to 10 minutes.

2. Add the tomatoes, and clam juice.

3. Bring to a boil and cook until the vegetables are tender and the liquid is reduced by half, about 20 minutes.

4. Reduce heat to medium and add the fish . Cook for about 2 minutes.

5. Wash thorough then add clams, mussels, and shrimp (make sure clams and mussels are cleaned and opened or broken shells are thrown out). Simmer until the shells just begin to open, about 4 minutes more.

6. Cook until all shells have opened, the shrimp is pink and curled, and the fish flakes easily, about 2 minutes.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Thea's heirloom salsa

As the weather is heating up I have noticed Mexican food keeps sounding more and more delicious. I went to the market and found some amazing heirloom tomatoes an thought I'd make my first salse. To put it modestly it turned out pretty darn good!
Thea's heirloom salsa
2 large heirloom tomatoes
1/2 large red onion
1 jalapeño pepper
bunch of cilantro
2 limes
1 avocado

1. Chop the tomatoes, dice the onion,dice jalapeño, and finely chop the cilantro.
2. Add those ingredients in blender, add the juice of two limes.
3. Turn on blender on chop setting.
4. Pour in bowl.
5. Cut avocado in cubes.
6. Add to salsa and stir.

Serve on egg whites, chicken, as a salad dressing,with baked corn tortilla chips, or a whole wheat tortilla!