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TrainerTiff: July 2011 >

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Clean Eating Vacation

Mommy needed some Mommytime, so I went to L.A. and ended up drinking green smoothies, eating veggies and doing yoga. Score!

I've been trying to make my diet as clean as possible lately, so I was a little nervous about how I was going to eat on this much-needed mini-vacation.

But there was no way I was going to cancel the trip. Hello? Stevie Wonder was waiting. Plus, hanging out with my buddy out there is always a good time.
On the way to the farmers market at The Grove
I recently read The Beauty Detox Solution and decided to follow the Radiant Beauty phase for 30 days to see whether I should adopt any new approaches to my current clean eating diet. The program calls for green smoothies daily, cutting out dairy, reducing grains, having animal protein at dinnertime only and, most challenging of all, very specific food pairing guidelines. To give you an idea of what the food pairing entails -- no protein and starch together (so no turkey wraps, which is usually a go-to healthy choice when I travel).

Normally, a vacation of any length usually means a little party time -- bring on the indulgences. But not this time. I planned ahead.

My plan was to drag my friend along with me. We'd go to the farmers market to get all the necessities for the smoothies and hit a Bikram yoga studio. Also, I planned to stick to a more vegetarian menu options while dining out.

Did it work? Yup!

When I hit town Saturday, we went straight to a couple of  farmers markets. First stop was the Silverlake Farmers Market where we picked up a few things like celery, parsley and this amazing roasted red pepper hummus. Next stop was the Farmers Market at The Grove where we got the rest of the things we needed -- lettuce, spinach, banana, pear and cilantro.

Lunch was a veggie gyro and I swapped the fries for salad. It was really tasty, too. That evening we met some people for an outdoor movie night, which was right next to the Los Angeles Coliseum. There were eight food trucks there with goodies from ice cream to sweet potato fries to Philly steaks -- but I resisted them all because we came prepared with our cooler of hummus, cucumbers, peppers, crackers and dairy-free chicken salad. We were set.
Our healthy movie snacks

Sunday morning started off with me making green smoothies, which was followed by a hot yoga session. Lunch was a large salad and later that evening we went to the Hollywood Bowl for a Stevie Wonder concert where we brought the cooler with the rest of our veggie and hummus fixings. I did have one little indulgence that night -- we split a small piece of red velvet cake. Oops.
At the Hollywood Bowl for Stevie Wonder concert
Another oops -- I had some chicken salad on wheat crackers one night and the next night that same chicken salad on a whole wheat pita (improper food pairings). So, I wasn't perfect. But all in all, not too bad. Best of all, I had a great weekend. My batteries are recharged and the veggie, green smoothies, yoga infusions did me well. This much cleaner approach to eating is energizing and amazingly I don't feel deprived or miss any of my previous meals.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Beauty Detox Diet Food Journal

8:00 a.m.
1 cup cherries
1 apple sliced
4 sliced strawberries

12:00 p.m.
16 oz Glowing Green Smoothie
12 raw almonds

4:00 p.m.
water with lemon
large salad: romaine, alfalfa sprouts, bean sprouts, sprouted garbanzo beans, flaxseeds, cucumber, green peppers, broccoli, tomatoes, avocado and organic chipotle ranch dressing.

8:00 p.m.
water with lemon
medium sized salad (same ingredients from above)
1 piece baked chicken
1 svg sunflower seeds

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Book Review: The Beauty Detox Solution

OK, so the items I just purchased might sound a little peculiar: nutritional yeast flakes, hemp protein, Himalayan salt and digestive enzymes.

But if you’re going “eat your way to radiant skin, renewed energy and the body you’ve always wanted” as The Beauty Detox Solution promises then, according to author Kimberly Snyder, C.N., these are some of the things you ought to have on your shopping list.

From what I’ve seen, the typical American diet is high in grains, corn, processed foods, refined sugar, saturated fat and sodium. Eating like this over the long term can lead to all sorts of problems, including obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

Also, it can mess up your skin, hair and nails and cause premature aging.

Snyder promises to show you how to fix these issues with The Beauty Detox Solution, a nutrition book that puts a fresh perspective on the old expression, “You are what you eat.”   

Snyder says that eating a diet high in fresh fruits and vegetables will restore health and beauty by improving the body’s ability to efficiently digest vital nutrients. This, she says, will help cleanse years of toxic buildup – which she calls “sludge” – out of your system.

She explains which foods to eat, when to eat them, how to eat them and how to pair them for the most benefits.

Some of the suggestions are simple, like eat fruit first in a meal. Others are more extreme, like eat an avocado if you’re still hungry after having a green smoothie for breakfast. Even the smoothie may sound over-the-top – the recipe calls for a whole head of lettuce, three-quarters of a bunch of spinach, four stalks of celery, an apple, a pear, a banana, juice of half of a lemon, and if you’re feeling spunky you can add a third of a bunch of cilantro or parsley.

Some of her philosophies sounded outrageous, even for me. I’ve eaten clean for years, and a lot of people consider my approach extreme in its own right. But reading that a turkey sandwich was an “improper Beauty Food Pairing” was alarming.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Hot Body Challenge: Results

The Hot Body Challenge was a complete success. Here's a detailed recap.

What I did:
For six weeks, I committed to a clean and healthy meal plan and daily workouts.

There weren't many breaks. Take a look at my daily diet and workout logs. Cheat foods were rare. And there were only four rest days without any exercise.

I ate four to six meals per day. And my workouts varied from traditional weights and cardio to yoga to Zumba to just push-ups or manual squats.

Why I did it:
I was determined to get back to my pre-pregnancy size by the time my twins turned 1. I needed to lose 10 pounds or 3 percent bodyfat to get me back to looking like my old self -- so I used these numbers to establish a six-week goal.

When my doctor gave me the OK to workout about a month and a half after delivery, I got myself back in the gym. But I started off slowly.

I didn't want to dive right back into it. My old training schedule would have been far too intense. Plus, I felt like I was in someone else's body. I had to learn how to pace myself and adjust my workouts to accommodate the 30 pounds I had picked up.

I slowly made progress ... and I mean slowly.

By the time my twins were 6 months old, I had only lost 7 pounds. It was at this point that I decided to turn up the intensity. Over then next four months, I lost about 13 pounds. And about two months from the boys' first birthday, I knew I had to get really serious.

This is when I set the six-week, 10-pound or 3 percent goal.

But I knew needed a little push! Something extra to make sure my goal became and accomplishment and not a dream.

So, I came up with the six-week Hot Body Challenge.

How I stuck to it:
There's strength in numbers, right? So I decided to get a group of friends together to join me.

Through Facebook, I put together a group of 17 friends -- each of whom wanted to make some improvments to their diet and or workouts.

I led and motivated the group with various daily challenges -- for example, do 50 push-ups, 100 squats, drink 60 ounces of water. I posted links to fitness-related articles and provided tips to help stay on track.

I supplemented this with Twitter updates and blogs posts.

This group really helped me stick to it. Accountability and support helped tremendously.

I hit my goal and lost 10 pounds exactly! In six weeks, I went from 146.6 lbs to 136.6 lbs. And my bodyfat  went from 21.9 percent to 19.6 percent.

Going forward
Though the challenge is over, I will continue to stick with my diet and exercise routines.

Sure, I'll allow myself a few more treats from time to time. And I won't workout so intensely every day.

But eating healthy and exercising is not something to do for a specific amount of time. It's a lifestyle. I'm going to stick with it to keep myself looking  and more importantly -- feeling -- great!