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TrainerTiff: June 2009 >

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Milk it Up

Many of us haven't had milk as a part of our daily diet since childhood. But there are a lot of adults out there who still love it.

Nothing wrong with that. Just drink it wisely.

Two things to look out for: fat and sugar.

Fat: OK, so on one end of the spectrum, there is whole milk and on the other end, skim milk. Then there are a lot of options in-between. Whole milk has the most fat, which you want to stay away from. Skim has the least amount of fat, but is probably the least tasty. So, if you can't stand the watery taste of skim (like me), opt for a 2% or 1%.

Sugar: Many people don't realize how much sugar milk has. In one cup of 1% milk, you are looking at 13 grams of sugar! Way too much. Check out the nutrition data here.

What should you do?

I like to drink soy milk. Now, when I first started to drink it, I was skeptical. (I thought it would taste bad.) But now, I love it and can't imagine going back to regular milk.

Soy is great because it has protein and is low in carbs. AND it's lower in fat and sugar than regular milk. Plus, for those who have a problem with lactose, it's lactose-free. (Bonus!) Check out the nutrition data for soy here.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

My Food Journal: Tuesday 6-16-09

1/2 cup oatmeal w/ sprinkle of sugar and light butter
1.5 scoops protein powder w/ water

1 small bowl of chilli (homemade)

1/2 turkey sandwhich on wheat w/ 1/2 slice colby cheese, light mayo
1/2 cup grapes

1/2 cup grapes

2 boiled eggs (removed half the yolk in both)

Rundown: Today was pretty good. I approximate the calories to be around 1100 calories. Protein was about 75 grams. I ate every few hours or so throughout the day which is good. I don't normally eat grapes because they are so high in sugar, but I'm treating myself since I don't typically eat them.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Multi-grain vs. Whole-grain

We've all been down the bread aisle at the grocery store and have been confronted with a multitude of bread choices that all seem healthy: "wheat," "whole-wheat," "multi-grain," "100% whole wheat" and so on. It can be a little over-whelming.

So what's the real deal?

When choosing your bread, the most important thing you can do, is look at the ingredient list. If you see anything that says enriched or refined, you can find a better choice of bread.

Whole-grain products contain all three parts of the grain: the germ, bran and endosperm. When grains are refined, some or all of these parts can be lost. Multi-grain products could be made out of several refined grains, which is not what we want. We want whole, unrefined grains. So your best bet, is to go with a bread that is whole-grain. But, be sure to check out the ingredient list for those key words: enriched and refined. If you see that, put it back and choose something else.

Check out this article for more detailed information on this topic.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Ab Training: Jack Knives

Are you in need of a new ab exercise?

Oftentimes, we fall into a routine and do the same exercises over and over.

Mostly, it's because we're comfortable with them, we know how to do them and -- let's be honest, here -- the thought of trying new stuff, can be intimidating.

Check out this link for a demo on doing jack knives. This is not a new exercise by any means, but it may be new to you!

Go ahead and give it a try, don't be scared.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Hula Hoop Your Way to Great Abs

What is one thing about fitness that you can always count on? Answer: new ways to get that fit body. I would caution that some new fads and pieces of equipment that promise new, amazing bodies in a matter of days, are a bunch of ... well, let's just say, they don't live up to their claims.

Hula hooping for exercise isn't necessarily a new idea, but in Minnesota, hula hoop classes are the newest fitness craze. Hula hooping for abs? I can see this working. Now, I wouldn't recommend dropping your normal fitness routine for this, but maybe incorporate a little hula hooping into your ab routine. Work your abs and have fun with it! Sounds like a win-win situation to me!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Drink Your Water

Are you getting enough water during the day? It is recommended that we drink 10 glasses per day. When you break it down, that is actually 8 cups per day which equals 640z. It may seem like a lot, but really if you drink two 1 liter (approximately) bottles per day, you're there!

Why focus on your water? Well, one, it's an essesntial nutrient. When you're losing weight, water flushes out the by-products of fat breakdown. Fat cells contain water and when you don't get enough water in the day (dehydration), your body will store water in these cells. Your body doesn't know when more water will come, so it stores the water it has. The more water you drink, the less prone your body is to hold onto that water and thus reduces the size of your fat cells. Smaller fat cells = a smaller you!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Skinnygirl Margarita

We all have our guilty pleasures and I'm no exception. When I'm not working out or thinking about the next day's menu, I like to watch TV just like the next person. I hesitate to admit this, but, yes, I am a fan of The Real Housewives. "Which one," you may ask? All of them! And while I'm being honest here, I enjoy an occasional drink too.

So, you can imagine my delight when Bethenny Frankel of The Real Housewives of New York came out with her book Naturally Thin. I purused its pages while in Barnes & Noble one day and was sort of surprised to find that it's not half bad. There are a lot of deliciously healthy recipes in there.

One recipe that stood out was her lighter version of the margarita. Who doesn't like a margarita? But, when you order them at restaurants they are loaded with tons of sugar and calories. Especially the ones that come in those giant glasses. You could be taking in around 600 calories or more for one single margarita!

For a new spin on the popular drink, check out The Skinnygirl Margarita by Bethenny Frankel. Cheers!