This week I was on business travel in New Orleans. It’s always great to see old friends and meet new ones that I only hear on the phone. Most of the year I’m on prep for a competition and when they do see me I’m eating food out of my 6 Pack Bag.
(Helpful hint: Don’t try to take almond butter through security. Future blog post…).
TWO questions I always get from inquiring minds:
- Are you on “prep” or can you eat and drink this week?
- What should I be eating to lose a few pounds?
So technically that’s three questions, but diet always comes up in conversation. Don’t be mistaken. I love pizza and french fries and my favorite candy….Junior Mints. Oh…and in the spirit of NOLA…we can’t forget lovely, gluten-FULL beignets and cafe au laits. But like we tell the kiddos, those are “sometimes foods” and not for regular consumption. WHY? Because when it comes down to it, diet is key to all of our fitness and wellness goals.
Where are abs made? Abs are made in the kitchen. You can do every workout and never miss a cardio session, but if you eat like garbage, your abdomen is nothing but a garbage can.
Not everyone is training for a bodybuilding competition. Some want to get ready for a life event like a wedding, a high school reunion, or jumping back into the dating pool. Some want to show off an itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny bikini at that next vacation. Others are making a life decision to be healthier and lose weight to live a longer life.
Regardless of the questions I am asked about eating, my recommendation is always the same: EAT CLEAN.
What does it mean to eat clean? Eating clean means that you are eating whole foods, avoiding processed foods and eliminating refined sugars from your diet. Eating clean is important to your overall health and wellness, because with proper nutrition, you can lose weight, remove toxins, feel better, and avoid developing diseases like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease and more.
HOW DO YOU EAT CLEAN?
- Eat whole foods.
Whole foods are straight from the farm and not processed. Choose grass-fed and free-range meats when you can get them. Bake or grill them…don’t fry them! You’ll enjoy whole fruits and vegetables (fresh not frozen), whole grains, low fat dairy products, unsalted nuts, and seeds.
- Avoid foods that are processed.
So if it has a label…it is processed. You can certainly have things like whole grain pasta*, but if you can’t pronounce an ingredient, don’t eat it!
- Stay away from refined sugar.
CALORIES, CALORIES, CALORIES! Refined sugar = calories. Opt for agave nectar or Stevia. Get rid of those sodas (I know…I love a Coke Zero too) and make sure to drink no less than a gallon of water a day.
- Drink water.
This isn’t necessarily a pillar of eating clean…but it’s essential to health and wellness. Drink at least a gallon of water a day (did I say that already?) and you’ll feel fuller, eliminate toxins from your body, and reduce bloating.
- Cook your own meals.
This gluten-free bikini girl has gone months and months without eating in a restaurant. The only way you know what’s in your food is if you are cooking it yourself. It’s really easy to cook meals from scratch and to prep several days at a time. Portion them out and put them in containers. If you cook your own meals and have them ready, you are much more likely to stay on track and NOT make bad choices when you are hungry.
- Eat five or six small meals a day.
Boost your metabolism by eating smaller meals throughout the day. You won’t get hungry if you are eating every two or three hours and again…you’ll be less likely to eat a 2,000 calorie fast-food burger meal and destroy all of your hard work made from eating well and working out!
- Take your lunch to work and make sure you have healthy snacks with you.
You’ll save money too…for those new clothes you’ll need when your body gets healthier and you lose weight.
- WIN with a balance of protein, carbs and healthy fats.
Protein, carbs and a little healthly fat are a winning combination. a match made in heaven. Healthy fats are things like avocado, coconut oil, grilled or baked salmon, and almonds or almond butter. When you have a balanced meal, you will feel full and satisfied.
Fit Tips on Clean Eating:
I love lists, so I made a Clean Eating Shopping List to help you make healthy choices at the grocery store. Get it here!
Eating clean is a major component to your fitness and wellness goals. When you start a clean diet lifestyle, you’ll remove the bad foods and add healthy foods to your diet. It’s always a great idea to kick it off with a cleanse to eliminate toxins and reset and re-balance your system with It Works! Cleanse. I do this cleanse every month and love, love, love it. It’s a two-day cleanse with two small 4 ounce bottles to drink each day. It is gentle and not explosive. Yes, it is “white-pants” approved!
I follow up my cleanse with daily use of It Works! Greens in berry flavor (sooo good…love the berry chews) to give me energy. To boost your metabolism and burn more calories, add Ultimate ThermoFit to your daily supplements.
Good luck and let me know how you’re doing! I want to hear from you!