One of the most deceiving things going on in the gyms today is belief that people can work off what they eat and drink. People show up day after day, working very hard in public to show the world they can be a champion in the gym. However, it’s what they do in private that is losing their fight with fat.
Muhammad Ali recognized the importance of what you do “far from witnesses”, and realized he could never win the fight in the ring if he didn’t win the fight with himself first. He had to fight laziness and mediocrity. He had to fight fear and doubt. He had to convince himself that he could be the champion he desired.
“I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was.”Muhammad Ali
In order to be the future champ, he had to be the champ in his workouts before he even faced his opponent. He had to go a few more reps and a few more steps past what his body wanted. He had to care for his body, which probably meant anything from a painful ice bath to getting the rest his body needed even when we didn’t want to take it.
He also recognized that it wasn’t always the big things in life that could bring a man down, it often was the small things that could trip a man up. The same goes with fitness. Your success can easily be tripped up by a few extra calories. The difference between getting thinner and seeing abs is the difference between stopping when you feel better, and continuing on past better to be your best. It is rarely the one hour workout (a mountain) that brings someone to quit, it’s the daily struggle to maintain a healthy diet, to keep showing up to the gym even when the results seem SO slow, that wears a person down.
“My only fault is that I don’t realize how great I really am.” Muhammad Ali
This quote may seem pompous, but it is a very true statement for most people. Most of our boot campers, and most of our members, do not realize how truly great they are. They often don’t believe in themselves as much as we believe in them. How can we believe in them? Because we have seen people JUST like them, who have the same set of excuses, fears, struggles and weaknesses, succeed. Once you realize how great you really are, you can do anything.
What I ask you today is this: Are you winning your fight far from witnesses, behind the lines, in your kitchen, in the gym and out there on the road? Or is you best effort what you want people see in the gym?
Why are we so quick to forget how bad food makes us feel? We are so quick to remember how great it tastes for a short moment, and forget how yucky we feel for such a long time afterwards. We are fooling ourselves if we think for a minute that there are not repercussions to our poor choices – AND we need to be equally reminded of the positive rewards that follow our healthy choices.
Eating healthy and living healthy lasts longer than your best cheat meal. While you don’t have to give up cake, or never eat a potato chip again, we all need to keep a realistic perspective on our eating and how it affects us long term. We should treat a cheat meal like we treat any other splurge in our life. We enjoy the moment, but we don’t get lost in it. Eventually, we come back to a healthy reality that is balanced in moderation, self-control and discipline.
The same way we come back from a vacation, maybe it’s time to come back from your eating vacation – and get back to investing in a healthier future.
Let’s commit to no longer allow our tongue to rule us and guide our future. Let’s make each word, each bite, each move we make count – doing what is right, healthy and good. And, if we mess up, let’s commit to making corrections. We can do this!
“Their end is destruction, their god is their belly…”Philippians 3:19
“I have a MAJOR issue with sugar from cookies, cakes, frosting etc. It is more of a psychological thing for me, because I used these kinds of food to comfort myself as a kid. The connection here is food is the only thing that loves me, so when things go bad and I need to feel loved I pig out on these types of food. Can you please give me ideas on how to STOP eating sugar?“
“Food is like an ex-lover that is just no good for me. Not just any ex, but a really sexy ex. When I think about him (food) all I remember are the good times. I forget how much pain and guilt he would cause. And after an incredible night together full of passion, he just leaves you crying on the living room floor in the fetal position full of guilt. And yet, late at night… I still want him so, so bad”.
Could this not be any better of a description of some people’s relationship with food? Loralie nailed it! You don’t have to necessarily be in an abusive relationship to get this. Any relationship that is not good for you is a great example of a bad relationship with food.
No More Compromises
I have to admit I have been pretty lucky over the years. The guys I dated were all pretty great guys, but even good guys can be BAD for you if they aren’t RIGHT for you. For instance, I dated one guy that was really an amazing guy before I met Steve. He was talented, smart, handsome, had a great family who embraced me, and was perfect – for someone, just not me.
I found myself compromising my values and settling for just a little less. Since he really was a super sweet guy, it was easy to think of all the good stuff, and easy to forget the bad. Then, one day, I realized we were both wasting precious time focusing on what was right, but ignoring what was wrong. We could either address the bad stuff right then, or we could deal with it later. Either way we were going to have to deal with it.
Good Doesn’t Mean Right
For me, it meant coming to grips with the simple fact that we were both good, but not good for each other. We were not in a healthy relationship. He was going to make a great husband - to someone else, but not me. And, I realized someone would love me exactly the way I needed to be loved, but he wasn’t going to be that guy.
I broke up with him that day, but it wasn’t easy. I cried and cried and cried – for days and weeks! BUT, I knew it was the right thing to do. It didn’t mean I wasn’t going to miss him and it didn’t mean that I would stop thinking about him. And, knowing I did the right thing was going to make it any easier. Even though I had a tremendous peace about my decision, it still hurt just the same.
I Don’t Need You Anymore
Food that isn’t good for you, in many ways, is just like a boyfriend that isn’t good for you. No matter how wonderful it makes you feel at times, it will ALWAYS let you down. Unfortunately though, we make compromises even though we don’t like the way it makes us feel.
Maybe it’s time you treat food like a bad ex. Remember, as much as you may love it, it will never love you back. Not only does it not love you, it will hurt you – leaving you feeling a little worse day by day. The only answer is to say goodbye. The longer you stay away, the stronger you will become. As you lose weight, as you get healthier, you will discover a new confidence – and you will love the new you more than you ever loved food.
It’s Time to Move On – and Move UP!
Shortly after breaking up with that guy, I met Steve. He was everything I ever dreamed of. He was romantic, loving, sensitive, funny, passionate, smart, handsome, and loved me completely. I could have NEVER imagined how good it would feel to be loved this way – and I would have never discovered his love if I didn’t first turn away from what I thought I loved at that time.
If you hold on to what just feels good right now, you may never discover just how great things could be. Healthy food loves you back. Fitness loves you back. Unhealthy food will always leave you unhealthy, and in a pit of regret and shame. Don’t let the initial taste of something sweet fool you, and lead you to a bitter end. Maybe today is your day to end your love relationship with food.
The problem with relaxing or cheating is it can suck the life right out of you. Poor food can make you feel bad, and laziness can make you even lazier. So, your innocent cheat day could turn into a cheat week, cheat month and cheat year if you don’t break the cycle fast.
If you want to enjoy a healthy balance of splurging, or relaxing, a little here and there, you have to have a bounce-back plan. You have to set some ground rules to help get you right back into your routine, as well as help erase any added calories.
5 Tips to Breaking the Cheating Cycle
1. Have limitations. Whether you limit your cheat meals, your calories, the number of cheat days you will allow yourself or days you will allow yourself to take off from the gym, you MUST have set limits. Having no limits can set you up for big-time failure.
2. Plan your bounce-back day. Draw a line in the sand that defines the END of your “fitness or diet vacation”.
3. Get rid of temptations. Don’t expect to do great on your diet if you still have beer and pizza in the refrigerator. This means you need to be careful when you originally purchase any foods off your diet (so you don’t buy too much), as well as you need to get rid of it all by the time you plan to go back to clean eating and healthy living.
4. Have a attack plan in place. Know what you plan to do when you get back to work. Pick out a new workout program, set diet goals, map out your eating schedule – fail to plan, plan to fail!
5. Set short-term goals. Whether you set a goal to do a set amount of workouts, or limit your calories, or you just want to lose the 5lbs you gained over your “fitness vacation” – having a clear goal will help you stay focused.
If you spent your holidays eating and relaxing, be prepared to put up a fight – because your body may not be as ready to workout as you want it to be. So, if yesterday was a BUST, make your workout and diet today a MUST – no matter how you feel!
It’s not about falling down, you just have to make sure you don’t STAY down.
If I had a nickel for everyone struggling with their weight who responds with “I eat really healthy” when I ask them how many calories they eat. What that means is – they have no clue how many calories they are eating. But they want me to know how clean they eat and how hard they work in the gym, so they can try to convince me they are the exception to the rule and that they are just unable to lose weight like everyone else. This is when the Red Flag Goes Up.
Listen, I’m not saying everyone has to count calories. I’m also not saying eating healthy is wrong. Gosh no! Eating healthy is AMAZING – and can change your life. BUTTTTTT… what I AM saying is, if you have no idea how many calories you are eating, there is no way you can expect to lose weight. Guessing just doesn’t work. Eating clean alone probably won’t change the scale much. Eating organic can be super healthy, but not affect your waistline. Going on the next fad diet won’t always work either. Working out like a maniac alone won’t cut it either. (again, I’m not saying it NEVER works – some people will luck out and lose weight by just making healthier choices, but most people will not be as lucky)
When it comes to weight loss, most people can’t get results just on making healthier choices alone. The only way weight loss works is when you eat fewer calories than you are burning. You can either just HOPE you are eating less than you are burning, or you can count calories and KNOW you are eating less than you are burning.
If you can’t tell me how many calories you are eating every day, don’t tell me how healthy you eat, don’t tell me you never eat fried food or sweets, don’t tell me how much protein you consume, don’t tell me how you don’t eat carbs or how you’ve gone Paleo. While all of those things are great, and I bet your next doctor’s visit will be a good one, they tell me nothing when it comes to whether you should expect to lose weight or not.
How Much Did You Spend?
Here’s an example: Let’s say I just come home from shopping. I bring all my bags in the house and Steve’s eyeballs pop out of his head and he says “How much did you spend?” and my response was, “I shopped at Target. All the items I got were on sale. I didn’t buy anything outrageously expensive. I didn’t get anything frivolous – everything I bought I really needed and was very practical. I made a lot of smart choices.” I can tell you right now, Steve’s response would still be “so, how much did you spend?”
You see, Steve doesn’t care what I bought, he wants to know how much I bought ($$$$). He doesn’t care how how much stuff was on sale. Our check will bounce whether it was a smart choice or a dumb one. We either have the money or we don’t – whether I needed the items or not. All my bank account cares about is what’s coming in and what’s going out – it doesn’t care what I am spending the money on or how hard I work for the deposits.
This is how your body works. While healthy food will help your body look and feel better, your weight is your body’s account balance. You can either afford items, or not. If you can’t afford the extra calories (whether it’s in Snickers bars or grilled chicken and rice), you will gain weight.
So, next time you want to feel sorry for yourself for eating so clean, but not losing weight, it’s time you start managing your body’s account like you manage your checkbook.
Are You Up for the Challenge?
Not everyone needs to count calories. Some people are lucky enough to be able to make smart choices (because they really enjoy eating low-calorie foods) and do well managing their weight naturally. Some people are able to make healthier choices simply because they don’t struggle with some of the temptations others struggle with. HOWEVER, if you battle overeating, binging, sweets, carbs, laziness or yo-yo dieting, I believe you should count your calories to help you stay accountable and manage portions, high-calorie items and exercise. Remember, it’s not something you have to do forever – but it will teach you SO much!
If you have tried eating better, eating smaller portions, working out more, etc but you’ve reached a plateau, maybe it’s time you start counting calories. You’ll be AMAZED with the results! Believe me, I’ve seen this time and time again – and I’ve watched people who have worked insanely hard not get results until they started counting calories. Are you ready to start moving that scale?! Commit to counting calories for 30 days. Unsure you can do it? Start with 14 days of calorie counting and then decide if you can do another 14 days then. I bet you surprise yourself!
Visit www.LoseIt.com today and download their app on your smartphone. I promise, it can change your life forever.
Should Fitness Leaders Encourage Cheating on Your Diet?
My Answer: A Big FAT No!
WARNING: This is a rare rant, but I believe it’s necessary and could be helpful. Here is the email I got in my inbox today that is sparking this topic.
Here, I have another one for ya! How about: “Cheat on Your Spouse (Without Getting Divorced)”. Or, what about “Cheat on Your Taxes (Without Getting Caught).” I wonder how that would work out for ya. All I know is that title would never fly if it were about any other subject other than diet.
Have you ever wondered why we treat dieting differently than anything else? Cheating is cheating. Instead of teaching people to cheat, let’s teach people how to eat right and maintain a healthy balance so they don’t HAVE to cheat (which I’m sure was their intensions, but still sends a bad message).
I personally believe if we can teach people how to improve the issues that CAUSE cheating, we wouldn’t need to cheat to begin with. I also believe people need to know the difference between cheating and treating.
Why We Cheat
Why do people cheat on anything?
- They feel like they are missing out
- They are deprived, they aren’t getting what they want, or feel like they need
- They are greedy
- They lack discipline
- They are looking for happiness
- And many other issues I’m sure a psychologist would tell us our real issue is
Strict dieting (and depriving) can absolutely cause some people to cheat and binge. It’s caused from extreme short-term discipline, or extreme (but typically short-lived) self control. Just because you have good discipline for a period of time doesn’t mean it won’t backfire on you. Ask your spouse to not have sex with you for a few months and see how that works out for ya. If you do that, you are putting them in a very bad and unhealthy place, so why would we do that to your own body?
While some issues are caused by extreme yo-yo discipline, other issues that cause cheating are from the opposite, a lack of discipline and self-control altogether. People who never really work on improving self control will continue to struggle until they really commit to making permanent changes. Instead, people will dabble in eating better for a period of time, but they never really stick with it long enough to learn a new long-term disciplined behavior. Self control is difficult in any area of our lives – it will not be easy, and it will take constant practice, but it is most definitely healthy.
Think of all the areas of our life that require constant discipline. If we have to constantly control our tongue, control our anger, control our desires, control our thoughts and control our spending, why would we think we would ever get to a place where we no longer have to control our eating? Self-control is required in all areas of our life if we want to live fruitful, healthy lives.
For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Hebrews 12:11
Cheating vs Treating
Now that we’ve talked about why we cheat, let’s talk about how we cheat. First, I think people misuse the word. Instead of looking at having a piece of cake as “cheating”, we should look at it as “treating” – BIG DIFFERENCE. The same way we make room in our budget to treat ourself to a new pair of shoes or a new purse, we need to learn to make room in our budget for a dinner out or a piece of pie. As long as we aren’t doing it all the time, it’s a healthy way to have treats. Unfortunately, many people are not treating, they are cheating. They are not making room for that treat. They aren’t shaving calories off somewhere else. They aren’t working it off now, and they have no plans to work it off later. They aren’t working to “buy” that treat the good old-fashioned hard-working way.
People are just taking what they want, when they want – whether they can afford it or not. Anywhere else, that would be called stealing. In the dieting world, it’s called cheating – but I’ve got news for ya. People are NOT getting away with it. They are imprisoned in body fat, tight pants, insecurities, depression and despair.
American Needs Stronger Leaders
WARNING: The following content is rated M for mature. Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense truths, unpleasant news, offensive and/or strong language. Caution is advised.
I am so tired of seeing headlines suggesting dieting is easy and fast. It’s not. While it doesn’t have to be awful (and when done right, can be much easier than you think), practicing discipline isn’t easy. It takes some level of effort – and results are rarely fast.
I’d like to encourage fitness leaders to choose their words carefully and, may I boldy say, challenge American to QUIT cheating. We need to encourage people to be accountable. We need to speak truth in love and, for once, actually tell people “it may be your fault”. It’s not a fun message to give, but at some point, people need to hear the truth – even if it isn’t as fun.
Could you imagine if Magazines used headlines like:
- 10 Ways to Practice Self-Control
- Learn How Balance Diet and Treats (not Cheats)
- Get the Foods You Need, So You Don’t Fall Off the Wagon
- Overweight? Then Move More or Eat Less
Of course those don’t sound near as fun as “have your cake and eat it too”. And “get off your fat butt and burn off that cake” would not only offend half of American, but it probably wouldn’t sell magazines. Sadly, America spends so much energy on being politically correct, and non-offensive, they don’t have the guts to use headlines that people really need to hear. Instead, they tell people what they want to hear, even if it’s not true, unhealthy, only partly true or even damaging. We live in a “feel-good” society that preaches “if it feels good, do it” and “you deserve it”.
Fitness leaders needs to help people get to the root of the problem and fix it, instead of encouraging followers to find ways around the problem, or mask it. Personally, in my opinion, we shouldn’t teach people how to cheat, or even appear to. That is just a bad message to me. While teaching practical eating tips so people can ENJOY life, and not be miserable on a diet, would ultimately teach people how to FEEL like they are cheating (which I am sure is what the magazine was doing) – I don’t think we should even use the word cheat in a positive sense. Why? Because the uneducated dieter could be led to believe that some people are getting amazing results by “cheating right” and doing whatever they want. NO! People get good results by eating right and practicing self control.
“…people always want to see what they can get away with first…”
People are already looking for every way to lose weight besides the right way. I see it way too much at the gym. People work really hard at the gym, only to blow it on poor choices because they basically want to see what they can get away with and still get the results they want. If you are dieting that way, I’ve got news for you – you can’t get away with it for long. Living like that is risky. It’s no different than stealing and hoping to get away with it. You have to be ready to get caught and face the consequences. The best thing you can do is just live right – and, in this case, eat right.
A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls. Proverbs 25:28
5oz Seasoned Ground Turkey
1 LaBanderita Low-Carb Tortilla (only 81 calories)
2 T Light Sour Cream
3 T Ariba’s Fire Roasted Mexican Chipotle Salsa
Kale Super Food Mix (salad greens)
Topped with Taco Bell’s Hot Sauce (it makes me feel like I’m cheating for some reason! ha!)
Need more carbs? Add 1/3 cup Quinoa for 74 more calories (total of 299 calories)
The key to success for me is to already have the main ingredients cooked up ready to go! I cooked this Sunday and have used it in various meals like this one! Personally, if I had more time (I was in a BIG hurry) I would have chopped fresh tomato, used a bunch of romaine lettuce and grilled onions and pepper. But I was in a rush, but it was so yummy and toootally satisfied my Mexican craving (which I get every other day!)
Turkey Taco Meat:
2.5lbs ground turkey
Grilled Chopped Onion
1/4 cup lime juice
2 packets of taco seasoning
Beware of These Burrito Ingredients
Burritos can be super high in calories if you aren’t careful. Between the high calories wraps most restaurants use and the popular stuffings like rice, cheese and refried beans, many burritos can rack up the calories quick. I used Chipotle’s ingredients and calories as an example.
Tortillas (290 calories) O…M….G!
Cheese: (100 calories)
Rice: (170/white rice & 160/brown rice)
Beans: (120 calories for black or pinto beans)
Guacamole: (150 calories)
Sour Cream: (120 calories)
Corn Salsa: 80 calories (might not be worth it)
Fajita Veggies: 20 calories
Tomato Sals: 20 calories
Tomatillo Green Salsa: 40 calories
Tomatillo Red Salsa: 15 calories
Lettuce: 5 calories
Look how the calories add UP…
1,265 CALORIES: Chipotle Chicken burrito with rice, beans, fajita veggies, corn salsa, cheese, sour cream & guac. (turn it into a bowl and it’s 975 calories – better, but still super high)
785 CALORIES: Chipotle Chicken burrito with brown rice, no beans, salsa and sour cream. (a bowl is 495)
645 CALORIES: Chipotle Chicken burrito with only chicken, fajita veggies, lettuce, sour cream and salsa. (A bowl is only 355)
Healthy Chipotle Chicken Burrito Bowl:
Chicken, lettuce, fajita veggies, fresh tomato salsa, Tomatillo green salsa and guacamole (for healthy fats to help the meal stay with you longer). 400 calories, 37g protein
Just because you are dieting doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the foods you like. You just need to eat smart and make healthy choices – as well as eat the right portions.
You may look at this graphic and think “that doesn’t apply to me because I don’t eat fast food”. Sure, it’s fast food restaurants that coined the whole “biggie size” slang we use today, but fast food restaurants aren’t the only people biggie sizing meals. People are piling way too much on their plate at home too.
Even people who eat healthy are often eating TOO MUCH healthy food. That’s why so many people can’t lose weight even though they are trying to make healthy choices. Eating healthy is just one part of being fit. Controlling portions is what will make you LOOK fit. Eating healthy will help you FEEL fit. Of course I’m also assuming you are exercising! Dieting alone can’t make you fit.
If you have been struggling with weight loss, I suggest you count calories for 7 days straight and see if you are biggie sizing your meals. Nine times out of ten, people are eating way more than they think.
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Many of you know Sundays are food prep days at the Pfiesters. I love to cook! I also love to eat! But, since I don’t LOVE to workout, that means I need manage what I eat very closely so I don’t have to workout any more than I have to! ha!
If I want to eat healthy, I have to plan well. That starts with shopping and ends with food prep, including measuring everything out and tallying calories so I know exactly how much I can have without packing on the pounds. This is probably the last week of fun cooking for the Pfiesters. After this week, we’ll be cooking even cleaner, plainer and more strict as Steve prepares for his next bodybuilding show. So, this is our last healthy hurrah.
Yesterday, I posted everything I cooked on my facebook and people asked for more details – so here they are!
First up is storage. When I tell people what I cook for the week, often times people’s first response is “won’t it go bad?” If you don’t have a husband that eats your weight in meat, then you may want to divide your cook days up, freeze some of it, or trim down the food prep a bit. Below are some recommended storage times from Food Safety so you can determine how much you should cook at once.
Poultry: 3-4 days (4 months in freezer)
Poultry in broth or gravy: 1-2 days
Ham: 7 days for whole ham, 3-5 days for 1/2, 3-4 sliced
Fish: 3-4 days (4-6 months in freezer)
Smoked Fish: 14 days
Gravy or broth: 1-2 days
Left Over (carry out) 3-4 days if refrigerated within 2 hours of serving
Pasta: 4 days
Beans: Up to a week
Casseroles: 3-4 days
Rice: 3-5 days
Hard Boiled Eggs: 7 days
Ok, say this with me: “If you fail to plan, then plan to fail”. I know, I say this all the time, but it’s SO TRUE! If I want to eat healthy during the week, I have to shop and cook healthy on the weekend. Here’s what I prepared, along with what I plan to serve it with. You’ll notice we eat most of our higher carb meals during the day, when we need the most energy, and save our meat and green veggie meals for dinner since you don’t need a lot of carbs to sleep.
My Meal Plans:
LUNCHES: Turkey Taco Meat for soft tacos using low-carb tortillas or served over a baked potato
LUNCH: Salmon to eat with sweet potato pie
LUNCHES: Turkey Joes to eat alone, on sandwich thins or on top of half a potato
LUNCH OR DINNER: Caribbean Chicken to eat alone, as a burrito or served over rice
DINNER: Turkey Taco Salad
DINNER: Grilled Chicken to eat with asparagus or broccoli or putting on salads
DINNER: Tilapia to eat with a green veggie
SIDES: Steamed Jasmine Rice
SIDES: Sweet Potato Energy Pie
FREEZER: Marinated Orange Chicken (to cook later)
FREEZER: Marinated General Tso’s Chicken (to cook later)
Here are the fresh ingredients I will need later:
Arugula, Spring Mix & Kale
Ingredients for Soft Tacos or Burritos (light Sour Cream, salsa, onion, etc)
Some of you asked how I could cook everything in less than 2 hours, so here you go! If you don’t care about the process, the short story is I multi-task. I am cooking several things at once and making the most of my time. I had the grill, stove, crockpot and rice steamer all going at once. That’s the short story if you want to skip the next 3 paragraphs and get to the recipes.
First, I started browning the turkey for the taco meat. Then I started filleting half the chicken for the grill and dicing the other half of the chicken for the Caribbean Chicken dish. I divided up the filleted chicken and threw them in ziplock bags with marinade and through it in the freezer, which I’ll cook later in the week. Then I threw the diced chicken in the crockpot with the rest of the ingredients. By this time, the turkey was done and I put it in a tupperware container to cool. (Let food cool before you place in your refrigerator to prevent your refrigerator from working overtime)
One round of turkey done. Now it was time for the second round. While I had the chicken marinading and the grill heating up, I diced up the onion and threw it in the pan with a little olive oil. While the onion was cooking, I put rice and water in my steamer and the quinoa on the stove. Once the onion was sautéed to my liking, I added the ground turkey and put the chicken on the grill. Then I threw a bag of sweet potatoes in a big pot to boil while I finished the turkey up. By the time the turkey and chicken were done, so was the quinoa. I then added the quinoa, and the rest of the ingredients, to the ground turkey and put everything in containers.
By this time I had the taco meat, Turkey Joes, grilled chicken, rice and quinoa all done. All I had left is the sweet potato and fish. I slapped the tilapia on my grilling pan with some lime juice, olive oil and seasonings and left it on the grill while I cleaned up the kitchen and finished boiling the potatoes. Finally, Steve cooked the salmon while I mixed the sweet potatoes together and my work was done! Later that night the Caribbean chicken was done and ready for storage too. Time for bed!
First, I need to tell ya – I love to cook, but I’m not a chef. I just want to eat health AND enjoy my food. I am a very creative cook who rarely follows a recipe. I make stuff up as I go along and enjoy the creation process (which admittedly makes it hard for me to share what I make because I’m adding a dash of this and that as I go). I’m working to improve that! I cook as simply as possible to limit ingredients and calories. I LOVE seasonings and I love trying new things. I also know if I make something taste TOO good, we have a hard time eating the correct portion. So, I try to cook smart and I avoid cooking my favorite dishes too often. My goal is to cook food for fuel and not just always for entertainment. Here is what I cooked yesterday.
This is a 1st-time creation and Steve LOVED it! Steve liked to add avocado to his meals to add quality fat for energy. This is great served over 1/2 a baked regular OR sweet potato!
Made approximately 7 Cups, 14 1/2 cups servings.
206 calories, 22g protein, 19 carbs, 5gm fat.
Turkey Taco Meat:
2.5lbs ground turkey
1/4 cup lime juice
2 packets of taco seasoning
Makes great taco salads, burritos, low-carb tacos and toppings for a Mexican baked potato with light sour cream. YUM!
Grilled Teriyaki Chicken:
Fileted Chicken Breast
1 Cup Kikkoman Triple Ginger Marinade
1/8 -1/4 Cup Olive Oil
Always a staple in our house! Last night I put a breast over a bed of arugula with slivered pear, onion, turkey bacon bits and honey roasted sliced almonds with plain balsamic vinegar on top.
1.5lb Diced Chicken
1 Small Can Diced Pineapples with juice
1 or 2 Cans Black Beans drained
1 Can Cilantro & Lime RoTel Tomatoes
1/2 Cup Lawry’s Caribbean Marinade
1 T Stevia
1 tsp salt (to taste)
Serve over your preference of rice or quinoa.
2 Cans of beans – 240 Calories, 23g p, 30g c, 3g f
1 Can of beans – 187 Calories, 19g p, 20g c, 3g f
(2 cans if eating alone, 1 can if you plan on putting it over rice, or putting it in a wrap)
Sweet Potato Energy Pie:
This is Steve’s preferred carbohydrate source – especially before his workouts. We purposely add nuts to add healthy fat to slow digestion so that it lasts longer (stays with you longer, which helps you feel fuller longer and give you a longer lasting energy). This is NOT going to be like the high-calorie ooey gooey pie grandma makes. It tastes great, and is much tastier than just a plain sweet potato, but this recipe is about making a yummy fuel source that is easy, tasty & healthy.
Mash the following ingredients together
8 Sweet Potatoes, boiled and peeled
1/3-1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1-2 T of light butter
2 T Light Maple Syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
2-3 T Sugar Twin Brown Sugar (0 calories)
1-2 tsp Salt (to taste)
After the potatoes cool, I peel them and mix everything in a big tupperware container. I don’t bake it or top it with anything. I eat it as is!
12 servings: 116 calories
Note: I determine serving size based on # of potatoes used. I don’t want to eat the equivalent of 1 potato, but prefer portions to be 1/2-3/4 a potato.
More About Safe Storage
The following post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of National Car Rental.
“If you fail to plan, plan to fail.”
5 Tips to Packing & Preparing for Fitness Success
The key to sticking to your healthy eating habits is being prepared. If you have something healthy to eat as soon as you first feel hungry, you are a lot less likely to grab fast food or hit a vending machine. If you fail to plan, plan to fail. So pack to eat healthy and act healthy!
1. Bring healthy snacks that travel well like 100-calorie packs of almonds, beef jerky, fruit, protein bars, ready-to-go protein drinks, or even a bag of microwave popcorn if you know you are going to have a microwave. (Here is a pic of my snack cooler on my last trip, which held seltzer water, mango, apple, cheese stick, protein bar and cashews.
2. Travel with a water bottle as often as you can to prevent dehydration – and to keep your tummy full.
3. Bring all the tools you need to help you be excited to hit the hotel gym, like wear your favorite pair of tennis shoes, make a new playlist on your ipod, or plan to watch a show on your ipad while you do cardio. If it isn’t fun, and you aren’t prepared, you are less likely to do it.
4. Pick up health and fitness magazines when traveling to keep you motivated and focused on healthy things while flying or traveling long distances.
5. Request a refrigerator and hit the grocery store if you are staying in your hotel for a long time. You’ll probably save money from not eating out as much, plus you’ll eat a lot healthier too!
Eat This, Not That: Making Healthier Menu Choices
Whether you are ordering room service, or at a restaurant, here are a few tips to making healthier choices.
- Order egg beaters instead of an omelet
- Choose ham or lox instead of bacon or sausage
- Whole grain toast or bagel instead of white bread or a bagel
- Choose fruit, yogurt or oatmeal instead of cereal, pancakes or pastries
- Order a salad instead of a sandwich
- If you do order a sandwich, only eat half at lunch, and save the other half for a snack
- Choose grilled foods over fried food
- Pick the meal with the least amount of ingredients and fat
- Put half our meal in a to-go box before you even take the first bite
- Choose simple meals over multi-ingredient meals
- Choose whole foods, like grilled meat with green veggies, instead of pasta or rice dishes
- Choose fish or chicken over red meat, and sweet potato over white potato or white rice
- If you must have pasta, rice or bread, have it during the day, when your body will use those calories. Your body doesn’t need carbs to sleep so trade high carb sides for low-calorie green veggies like broccoli, asparagus, spinach or salad.
- Choose a salad that only has 1 or 2 high-calorie foods on it, over a salad with nuts, cheese, fruit, dried fruit and a fattening dressing to boot!
- If you are going to have an alcoholic beverage, choose the drink that will take you the longest to consume, like red wine. Sip it slow
Food Prep Tips:
The best way to avoid high-calorie meals on the go, is to prepare food in advance – even if you travel. Even though Steve travels once a week, we tupperware our food, throw it in a cooler and take it with us – whether we are just traveling across town – or out of town! We never go anywhere without something to eat or snack on.
CLICK HERE to get some of these recipes.
Continue conversation with #HealthyBizTravel