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TrainerTiff: September 2009 >

Thursday, September 24, 2009

TrainerTiff: Are You Eating Enough Fat?

On a low-fat diet? Fat avoiders beware: Fat is not the enemy. In fact, it is necessary.

We need fat in our diets because it supplies essential fatty acids to aid in growth and healthy skin. It also, helps us digest food and absorb vitamins.

Now, this doesn’t mean to go out and eat all the ice-cream and cheeseburgers you can get your hands on. That would be a little ridiculous, right?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

TrainerTiff: You Don't Have to be Perfect

It’s been several weeks since you last worked out. Heck, let’s be honest — it’s been months … at best. Your diet has been full of fast food, and you haven’t sat down to a serving of vegetables in … well, let’s just say a long time. Breakfast? Forget it, you don’t do breakfast.

Does this sound familiar? If so, you’re not alone.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Get First Lady Arms By Next Spring

There's no need to question the fact that Michelle Obama has great arms. But there is one question many women have asked: how?

In an article in Women's Health, the first lady’s personal trainer reveals some of his techniques that have helped shape those arms we've become so familiar with.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Eating Healthy Doesn't Mean Expensive

Eating healthy isn't tough, even if you're on a budget. Follow these tips and save yourself some money:

1. Shop locally: This summer I discovered the City Market and oh, my goodness, what a find! It's got all the same vegetables and fruits as the supermarket -- only much cheaper.

For example, this past Sunday, I bought:

2 green peppers
1/2 pound of mushrooms
1 large red onion
1 jalapeno
2 tomatoes
1 package of strawberries
1 pound green beans
1 avocado
1 lime

Grand total: $7.50

That would have cost more than $10 at the grocery store. (Just the green peppers, mushrooms, strawberries and avocado would have cost about $9.)

2. Don't buy organic: Sure, organic does have its benefits, namely it is free toxic chemical sprays. But comparing organic to non-organic foods, the nutritional content tends to be similar. A key difference is that organic products tend to cost much more. So if you're on a budget, don't worry too much about eating all organic. Plus, I keep reading stuff like this.

3. Buy store brand products: Most store brand products taste the exact same as their brand name counterparts, i.e. oatmeal, beans, rice, pastas, etc. You won't be missing anything by buying generic.

4. Buy in bulk: Purchase the largest quantity of a product you can store. Everything from oatmeal to meat. You get more for your money. If you buy meat in large quantities, just divide it into individual servings and freeze it for later use.

5. Plan your meals: Before doing your shopping, make a list. Plan out your meals for the week and stick to your list. Often times going in without a plan, it is easy to pick up items you don't necessarily need.

Changing a few shopping habits can save lots of money. Initially, when comparing products and seeing that the difference isn't that much, maybe .30 cents, don't forget that it adds up.

And it adds up fast.

Surprise! Healthy eating doesn't have to be expensive. All it takes is a little know-how and planning.

Tiffiany Moore is a certified personal trainer and NANBF figure competitor. Read more at Questions or comments? E-mail Follow on Twitter at

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Are You Eating a Whopper Salad?

Pretend I'm yelling at you: "Salads are not healthy!"

Salads are one of the most common things people start to eat when they go on a "diet." (Going on a "diet" never works, but that's another blog post for another day.) But the eat-salad-and-lose-weight strategy is almost certain to backfire.

Yes, salads are full of raw vegetables that can be low in calories and full of fiber and micronutrients, but what determines whether a salad is healthy or not depends on what else you put on it.

Cheese. Bacon. Croutons. Eggs. Fruit. Nuts. Salad Dressing. These are all of the things that make a salad delicious, but also add tons of unnecessary calories.

Salad dressing is the most serious offender when it comes to ruining an otherwise healthy meal. Does anyone really use the suggested serving size? It's almost impossible to only use 2 tablespoons of ranch unless the salad can fit inside the palm of your hand.

Some salads are so loaded down with extra calories that you may as well eat a Whopper. Yes, that's right, a Whopper.

Check it out: A Whopper has 670 calories and 40 grams of fat. Believe it or not, adding enough toppings to a salad can yield similar stats.

Let's compare two lunch salads. One with all the fixings and one with fewer fixings.

Salad 1
3 cups of lettuce
3 ounces grilled chicken
1/2 chopped boiled egg
1/2 cup of cheese
4 Tbs croutons
1/4 cup cucumbers
1/4 cup tomatoes
1/2 cup broccoli
1/4 cup mushrooms
1/2 ounce cashews
1 /4 of whole avocado
4 Tbs regular ranch dressing

Total approximate calories: 855
Total approximate fat grams: 65

Salad 2
3 cups lettuce
3 ounces grilled chicken
1/4 cup cucumbers
1/4 cup tomatoes
1/2 cup broccoli
1/4 cup mushrooms
2 Tbs vinaigrette dressing

Total approximate calories: 210 calories
Total approximate fat grams: 8

It's obvious that Salad 2 is the better choice. Sure, you may not add every item listed under Salad 1 to your bowl, but you get the point. Too many extras can sabotage your good efforts.

When making a salad, try to add lots of vegetables, some protein -- like grilled chicken -- and use a vinaigrette dressing.

Vinaigrette dressings have fewer calories and fat than creamy dressings. An added bonus to the vinaigrette is that is spreads more evenly throughout the salad as compared to a thick creamy dressing.

Tiffiany Moore is a certified personal trainer and NANBF figure competitor. Read more at Questions or comments? E-mail Follow on Twitter at