There are negatives and positives to eating before bed, just like there are advantages and disadvantages to almost anything. When I was younger, my brothers and me were allowed to have a bedtime snack before going to sleep… I used to eat a bowl of ice cream before bed every single night. I did it because I could get away with it with my young-kid, fast metabolism. Now, I get the midnight munchies and it catches up with me and I feel like crap in the morning. Most of the time, it’s because I crave unhealthy food. And I’m sure I’m not the only one, especially if you tend to eat healthy throughout the day (you haven’t had anything bad all day so at the end of the day your body wants it, more so your mind wants it). So, I have a few tricks up my sleeve that you can do and keep in mind to avoid these late night snack cravings.
Now, for suggestions as to what you should eat before bed… Try to pick foods with magnesium or tryptophan in them. Tryptophan is an amino acid that is found in turkey and some other foods, which helps with sleep. Magnesium is found in avocados and also helps with sleep and eases waking up in the morning. Cherries are a good food to eat because they contain natural melatonin. Lastly, whole grains with protein combined together, like crackers and yogurt work as a good pre-sleep snack. Foods with caffeine, high amounts of fat, and/or alcohol should be avoided because they have the opposite effect of the above suggested foods.
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What you eat before a workout and whether or not you even eat before working out always affects how you perform! FOOD IS ENERGY! FOOD IS GOOD! I never workout on an empty stomach, and neither should you!
Before your workout you want to fuel yourself with carbs. When people hear the word carbs, they tend to assume that they are unhealthy… BUT carbs are the main source of energy for the body, so IT IS PERFECTLY OK TO EAT CARBS! YOU’RE BODY NEEDS THEM!!! You should not completely cut them from your diet, especially when you are an active person. Plus, when you fuel your body with carbohydrates, then you can last for a long duration and have an awesome workout!!! YOU NEED ENERGY AND A GOOD SOURCE OF ENERGY TO PERFORM WELL. Otherwise, your performance will be sluggish and you won’t feel as well during and after the workout. Quality is the key!
Along with carbs, you should fuel your body with some fruit. Fruits are another good source of energy before a workout. They contain healthy sugars and give you that extra kick of energy! Also, they are easy on the stomach for digestion and they are a quick option when you are running on a tight schedule.
If you’ve read my blogs before, I’m all about that banana and peanut butter or almond butter, so I usually eat that before a workout, especially if I am working out in the morning in a hurry. Some other good pre-workout meals are Greek yogurt and trail mix (preferably dried fruit than chocolate), fruit and veggie smoothies, apple and peanut butter, or oatmeal and berries. Kerri usually eats a cup of mandarin oranges before her workouts, which is a really good source of energy to give her that extra boost!
Now, when you finish your workout, you need to put something back into your stomach… YOU MUST REFUEL THE LOST NUTRIENTS! While you are working out, you are burning off that pre-workout meal or snack. Your body goes into a recovery mode. Foods that have protein and carbs are good for that recovery. If you skip a recovery snack or meal, you will not be able to build muscle and the results of the workout will be counterproductive. I usually drink a protein shake or eat a bar and a sweet potato after my high-intensity workouts. Some other good options are hard-boiled eggs, scrambled eggs, chocolate milk, tuna, and/or oatmeal.
Timing is another really important aspect to think about. You want to try to eat a pre-workout meal about an hour before working out… Which is just enough time to settle in your stomach so you do not feel like it will come back up when you are doing burpees! You want to try to eat something about a half of an hour after your workout. The sooner you eat after your workout, the better so that your body can recover.
Comment or e-mail me if you have any questions!!
My last blog post was about making healthy choices when it comes to snacks! I hope my readers have been following my advice when it comes to snacking. For one of my snacks today I had a banana and almond butter, and IT WAS DELICIOUS! This post is going to be about trying new foods!!! Eating plain and the same gets boring after a while, so why not switch it up?!
For starters, just because you want to eat healthy does not mean you need to eat tasteless foods. Seasoning is always a good switcher-upper! My favorite seasoning of all time is “Slap Ya Mama” seasoning… It’s got a good spicy kick to it and you can put it on anything! And you can even make it, but I think there’s a special ingredient to it that makes it so delicious. I put it on my vegetables, potatoes, meats, and pretty much everything. Any seasoning can really make a difference when cooking. But I try to stay away from really salty seasonings.
Seasoning isn’t the only way to switch up foods. Instead of making twice-baked potatoes, try twice-baked sweet potatoes! If you haven’t tried a super salad, try one now! Instead of regular white pasta, try rice or wheat pasta. Also, if you like pasta and rice, quinoa is another healthy alternative and it is cooked similarly. Spaghetti squash is another really delicious option! Also, breakfast does not always have to be breakfast foods; try eating leftovers from dinner! SWITCH IT UP. I find a lot of my recipes on Pinterest and Instagram. If you’re ever at a loss for meal ideas, social media is like a recipe book. Also, mix things up and put foods together that you never thought of before. For example, hummus on eggs and toast – I never thought it would be good, but it is.
I tried a new recipe and made flourless pancakes recently. The ingredients included bananas and eggs, with optional vanilla and baking soda – 4 SIMPLE INGREDIENTS! It was way better than I thought and I will probably make them again. I also tried making tuna fish salad with mashed avocado instead of mayonnaise. So take a chance, try something different… YOU NEVER KNOW, YOU MIGHT LIKE IT!
Last week, my blog was about eating a super salad. If you put healthy toppings on a salad, then it will clearly be a healthy meal. The goal is to eat healthy for every meal of the day. With that, you also want to eat healthy snacks! Once again, I can’t stress it enough that you can’t out-exercise a bad diet. If you eat healthy breakfast, lunch, and dinner but unhealthy snacks in between and a lot of snacks, then you are just going to breakeven. But it isn’t bad to treat yourself to an unhealthy every now and then.
AVOID JUNK FOOD! Junk foods consist of high amounts of sugar, saturated fats, and trans fats. They include foods such as chips, cheese curls, donuts, candy, French fries, cookies, cake, soda… And the list can go on. You want to eat foods that have natural sugars, monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats, and omega 3 fatty acids. Healthy snack choices would include, fruits and veggies, like strawberries, an apple and peanut butter, or carrots and hummus. Fruits and veggies are always a quick and easy snack to pack too if you’re in a hurry. If you’re going to eat a snack like pretzels, try to eat whole-wheat pretzel thins, or eat something like whole-wheat crackers, or a healthy granola bar.
When I buy snack foods, I always look at the amount of sugar in them and try to buy foods with a minimal amount; about 5 grams or lower. Also, I always look at the ingredients. The ingredients are usually listed from highest amount to lowest, so if corn syrup is one of the first ingredients, or even in the food at all, I tend to put it back on the shelf because there is mostly that ingredient in the food.
A lot of the time a food will say it has 2 grams of sugar, but then 15 grams of sugar alcohols… Which is basically sugar because it comes from the sugar. Also, if I can’t pronounce the ingredient and I have never heard of it, I tend to not buy the food. If you’re interested in a healthy protein bar, Quest bars are a good option. They are really delicious, have a ton of flavors, they have a low amount of sugar, and not a lot of calories.
Also when buying foods, stay around the perimeter of the grocery store. Think about it, when you walk into a grocery store, the veggies are right in front of you, then usually the breads are next along the wall, then the meats, and before you know it, you’re on the other side near the dairy. Meanwhile, all the chips, soda, and cookies are in the isles in the center of the store. With the exception of the frozen and canned veggies and beans, the healthiest and freshest foods are on the outside perimeter. Although these foods are a little pricier, the extra 2 dollars is totally worth it. Not only will you feel better when you eat healthier, but you’re body will thank you when you’re older. Again, eating healthy will reflect on every other aspect of your life!
Here is a list of quick and healthy snacks to choose from:
I hope this helped for when it comes to choosing which snacks to buy! REMEMBER, NO JUNK FOOD, CHOOSE HEALTHY SNACKS, AND SHOP FROM THE PERIMETER. Questions or comments are encouraged!!! I would love to hear some feedback! Thanks for reading!
Warm-up: 50 jump rope, 25ea. lateral jumps or hops, inch worm or walk outs (3x through) and dynamic stretches
Core exercises (4x through this week!) – increased weight and intensity from last week:
So a lot of people think that eating a salad is a healthy meal, which for the most part it is, but it depends on what you put on it. You want to pick a salad that is colorful, and has healthy toppings. An example would be a salad with spinach, grilled chicken, avocado, tomatoes, and then oil and vinegar versus white iceberg lettuce, fried chicken, lots of cheese, bacon, croutons, and a thick dressing. The more veggies, the better and you want to choose lean meats or fish to top it off for some protein. Salads are not only healthy, but they’re super easy and quick to make.
Having color on your plate is not only something you should use as a tip for your salads, but for every meal. When I don’t eat a salad, I eat something like a piece of chicken, a sweet potato, and broccoli – it’s colorful and has protein and carbs. Also, if something is green, it is most likely a good choice… Green peppers, green cucumbers, green lettuce, green broccoli, etc. GREEN IS GOOD!
To the left is a picture of the super salad I made today!! It had spinach and some romaine lettuce with chicken, avocado, baby tomatoes, cucumbers, and flaxseed. I used lemon and oil as my dressing. It was way bigger than it looks… And so delicious!
Keep eating healthy. Remember that in order to get lean, you have to eat clean. Once you get into the groove of eating healthy, you tend to crave healthier foods and no longer crave unhealthy foods. All you have to do is get over the hump!! It’s like running, once you run past a certain point, you feel like you can run forever, with the occasional breaks to catch your breath! Just like the occasional treats to reward yourself!
Also, remember to follow a plan! Even writing down what you eat throughout the day helps. You won’t reach your goals unless you have a plan to reach them! Writing things down, goals and a diet log, will be super helpful overall. I do it every day. Overall, stay positive when making a plan! Remember to keep it S.M.A.R.T.!
If anyone has any questions I will be more than happy to answer! I want to answer questions because it will help me help you! Also, I check my e-mail daily (firstname.lastname@example.org)! I hope you all go and have a huge super salad tomorrow! And if you do, post a picture of it!
Warm-up: 50 jump rope, 50 jumping jacks (3x through) and dynamic stretches
Core exercises (3x through) – increased intensity from last week:
Last week I talked about nutrition and how you can’t out exercise a bad diet. This week, I’ve been going to a lot of DF classes, like intervals, crosstrain, and spin and tone, and I’ve also been eating really well, mainly staying away from sugars, other than fruits. Overall, I feel so energetic and healthy. I’m trying to follow everything that I blog about and not let my readers do it alone! Good nutrition and good exercise will get the best results!
This week, my post is going to be about nutrition again, but mainly goal setting. I’ll start with the nutrition part. With that being said, start your day off with an awesome and filling breakfast. Waking up 15 minutes earlier to eat something quick is way better for your body and mind than skipping the meal altogether. A good breakfast includes proteins, carbs and good fats. For example, some grain, a dairy product, and a fruit or vegetable. I usually eat 2 eggs with some veggies, like spinach and peppers, and meat in it with a slice of whole-wheat toast. Kerri has a protein packed, low sugar, vitamin rich, smoothie! You want a breakfast that holds a lot of nutrition and provides enough energy to last a couple hours, especially when you’re waking up and working out. Carbohydrates are the main source of energy for the bod, protein helps repair and rebuild your cells, as well as aids in keeping you healthy, and fat provides protection and transportation inside the body. If you’re really in a hurry, an apple and peanut butter is a really good and quick snack that can hold you over… Just as long as you replenish your body with food soon after.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and is the kick-start to your day. It sets the pace for the rest of your day. You go all throughout the night fasting and need to wake up and eat something that can give you energy. Also, eating breakfast helps with concentration throughout the rest of the day. Skipping breakfast, or any meal, does more harm than good. When you skip a meal, such as breakfast, you are more likely to snack on foods that are higher in sugar and fat late on and you are more likely to have no energy. Therefore EAT BREAKFAST AND LUNCH AND DINNER!
Now for goal setting, it’s so important to follow a plan and set goals because of many reasons. When you set goals, you have something to strive for and you feel good about yourself and your accomplishments. You have to set short-term and long-term goals. Also, BE PATIENT! You’re not going to lose 10 pounds in two days. Good things will come with patience and hard work. When setting goals, be S.M.A.R.T. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely. Your short-term goals lead up to your long-term goals. For example, a short-term goal would be to attend crosstrain 3 times a week. An example of a long-term goal would be to get a muscle up by the end of summer.
Give yourself credit along the way by reflecting and acknowledging what you are doing daily to get you to your goals. For every day that I conquer my short-term goals, I put a dollar in a jar. At the end of every two months, I treat myself to something such as an ice cream cone or a new pair of workout leggings. The ice cream cone usually happens more than every two months though… Overall, when setting goals, keep the following in mind:
Warm-up: 5 to 10 min. row, spin, or jog and dynamic stretches (which include exercises like leg kicks, walking lunges, donkey kicks, and arm swings)
Core exercises (3x through):