Diet starts Monday! Sound familiar?
The problem with Monday start diets: What happens by Wednesday? or if you're lucky, by Friday? It's too hard, it's too strict, and just one little piece won't hurt.
It's hard to make big changes in life. The energy and time commitment is often too great. That's why so many people still struggle with their health. The problem is starting the diet and sticking to it. So why not take the opposite approach? Forget about the fad diets, restrictive foods, the grand, amorphous goals of losing weight or getting in shape. Instead, make a life style change. Making small changes over all aspects of your day to day living, that combined can make a big difference. 98% of diets fail so generally you're setting yourself up for not only failure but a down right filthy mood because all you've eaten in 5 days is lemon water and maple syrup.
So stay tuned on Sunday nights as we will be putting up little tips to get you well and truly on your way. Why Sundays....? Because all though you're starting your new life we figure its hard to break a habit!
So there are so many theories going around about how many meals you should have, how often, how much so we thought we would try (and we mean try... nobody is perfect) to clear a few things up.
1. It's all about what works for you, unless not eating works for you and we suggest incorporating meals into the schedule. Everybody is different because of your gender, height, age, genetics (yes thanks mom for the ghetto booty), work balance, time and mindset so just because your bestie can eat 10 meals a day doesn’t mean you can. Trial and error will get you there and in the end you will find a eating plan that works for you and makes you feel amazing.
2. Starvation… now this phrase is thrown around quiet frequently in the dieting world. Everyone drags on about starvation and they're right. Even though not eating or crash diets (by crash we mean lemon detox) cause weight loss they are not causing fat to be burned. Mostly you are losing fluid and muscle glycogen hence you weigh lighter and looking thinner but as soon as you start eating it all comes back (not to mention a few extra pounds because often people over reward themselves after a crash). So the point is you need to eat, and you need to eat the right foods.
3. How much.. So there is a saying that you should eat like a Queen for breakfast, Princess for lunch and pauper for dinner, and we thing that’s it's pretty on track. Look at Kate Middleton, what a babe! It’s better to start the day with a filling meal as it not only kick starts our metabolism but also keeps us form over eating or binging later because we are hungry (yes!! Stop eyeing off the banana bread at the coffee shop, just because banana is an ingredient doesn’t make it healthy). Something like a muesli with yoghurt and grated apple or a poached egg on whole grain toast are good options. Lunch is next and again keep it filling because its along way to dinner and a lot of you lovely people are likely to be putting in a sweat session after work (and we don’t want to get the 3thirty munchies) but it should be smaller than breakfast. A salad with lean meat (salmon, poached chicken) is high in fibre and protein. Finally, finish the day off with dinner and this should be our smallest meal because we are likely to be less active and we don’t want it sitting in our tummies when we head off to be bed. A lot of models say they don’t eat carbs after 4, so the principle is sorta right. You want to have dinner a full 3-4 hours prior to bed time. This will also help in energy levels, and ease going to sleep.
4. Snacks…. Now we haven’t mentioned snacks but of course throw them in too. Whatever is easy and accessible for you. Yoghurt, nuts, fruit, small smoothie, dried fruit, muesli/nut bar. For nuts we are looking at ¼ of a cup or enough to fit in the palm of oyur hand. Yogurt no more than 200g (the size of a store bought tub), 1piece of large fruit (apple, pear) or 2 pieces of small fruit (apricot, kiwi fruit) and for bars check the sugar content and aim for at least 5g of fibre (fibre is what makes us feel full).
5. Timing… Breakfast has a 2 hour window from waking up. Longer than that the body will slow down the metabolism and store our glucose and fat differently (and we mean a bad differently). If you workout in the morning try a small snack like 40g of yogurt etc before or you can do a starved workout (What ever feels better for you) but eat immediately afterward (by all means have a shower and get dressed first) and if you are an evening exerciser before dinner wait at least an hour after you workout to have dinner as this optimising the fat burn etc.
Yes there is a lot of changes to your diet and eating times depending on your fitness regimen (protein and carbs straight after and prior to resistance exercise etc) but the above points are the basic principles to follow and for any major manipulations also consult someone in the field like a sports nutritionist/dietitian.
You can’t out exercise bad nutrition.
Exercise should be about rewarding your body with endorphins and strength, not punishing your body for what you have eaten.