Personal Health Intiative Training

Posts tagged ‘IIFYM’

Food Shaming

Gluten-Free, IIFYM, Flexible Eating, Keto, Low Fat, Low Carb, Atkins, South Beach, Zone, Non-Fat, Diet, Free Range, Organic, Natural, Raw, Whole Wheat, Sugar Free, Vegan, Paleo, Vegetarian and more! What are you? Do you classify yourself as a devout follower of a specific style of eating? Do you shun those who like to indulge in a nice juicy burger on two fat slices of white bread? Do you turn your nose up on those who eat only plant sources of food? Are you a food shamer?

Since when did the way people eat become a fad? When did we turn into a society that is totally obsessed with the way people eat? Why do we call some food bad and some food good? We have all turned into a bunch of food shaming lunatics. I started thinking about this the other day when I was offered a piece of homemade pound cake. In the past, I would have felt guilty for eating it, and if I did eat it, I would immediately get on the treadmill to “burn it off.” But you know what? I ate the cake, and it was good….and then I went about my business. I didn’t care if it had 200 or 500 calories because I know I don’t eat cake every single day. I eat in a way that allows me to consume a lot of whole fruits, vegetables, meats and grains and snack foods such as cakes, cookies and so on. But, I don’t obsess over every single thing.

I used to be horrible; especially after my first figure competition! I ate like a cow, and then felt guilty. It was pretty much a daily process. I gained weight and then had to work twice as hard to get it off. Competing had my mind screwed up when it came to food. I was so used to being super restrictive that I had a hard time making the transition back to everyday life. Before I competed, I did not have this issue. I am much better now. I used to judge people who ate a certain way and shame myself if I ate a cookie or a burger.

I’m done with that. There is no black and white when it comes to nutrition. It is a gray area. You have to learn to look at the macronutrients in your food and not just the name of the food. Burger does not equal bad and “Clean Food” does not equal good. If you eat too many “clean” foods, you can gain fat just as you would from “bad” foods. The best way to avoid becoming a food shamer is to do your own research. Learn about nutrition so that you can make smart choices. Don’t judge people by the way they eat. Learn how to eat a variety of foods. You might find that there is something you’ve never tried that you like. Unless you are an athlete or preparing for a bodybuilding competition, you can be a little flexible with your diet. You will be happier for this in the end, and you will learn how to control your food impulses.

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V’s Sweet Potato Cookies

These cookies are not like regular sugar and fat laden cookies. They are actually quite healthy and a great preworkout snack. I had a lot of cooked sweet potatoes that I needed to use before they went bad, so i came up with this recipe.
You will need the following.
2 cups of oat flour (I just take plain oats and blend them until they turn into a flour texture)
3 tablespoons of unsweetened shredded coconut
1 tablespoon of peanut butter
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 large roasted sweet potato with skin removed
2 eggs
1 teaspoon of baking splenda
3/4 cup of unsweetened almond milk
1 tablespoon of coconut oil

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl and mix together with an electric mixer or by hand. You can add a little water if the batter is too thick.
Make 12 cookies and place on a cookie sheet.

Preheat oven to 350
Place cookies in the oven for 12-15 minutes

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119 calories per serving!

New Recipe….And Change of Plans

My boyfriend’s birthday is Wednesday, and I wanted to get a cake of course! I decided to get a co-worker to make a mini-cake and cupcakes for him. I also put in a request for a healthier dessert option for myself (because I thought I was competing in June…more on that later). She made the most wonderful carrot cupcakes and red velvet cake and my special request for a pan of mini-dark chocolate cheesecakes made from tofu.

Since I run a library inside of a school that has a culinary program, I get to explore the wonderful cookbooks and cooking magazines that we have in our collection. I always try to find healthier options for desserts because I LOVE sweets. I came across a book entitled “1,000 Gluten-Free Recipes” by Carol Fenster and found some pretty awesome dishes. I wanted something, low carb, low fat, and low sugar. It took me a while, but I spotted a very simple recipe that fit the requirements. Mini-Chocolate Cheesecakes! They were delightful and still had plenty of flavor. (I also ate some red velvet cake too!)

So you are probably wondering why I am eating red velvet cake if I am preparing for a show…well I am not doing the show. I decided that right now, financially I am not in a position to compete and I want to make some more improvements before the next competition. I am also a tad bit burned out from dieting for 5 months. My body and mind need a break, and I am focusing on getting two other people ready for their competitions which is very exciting! I am still training and might do a one mile race in a month, just to have a goal to shoot for. When I am not prepping for a show, my approach to dieting it FLEXIBLE. I eat what fits in my macronutrient goals for the day. I don’t restrict certain foods but I strive to eat a well-balanced range of healthy foods, and yes, I do eat some “junk.” I just fit everything into my macros for the day. This is the only thing that works for ME long term. I don’t do well with bland restrictive diets. (A sure fire way to binge is to deprive yourself of certain foods unnecessarily.)

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Now, if you want to make a healthier dessert, and you love cheesecake, this recipe is a great option. Note*: You don’t have to use the Tofutti, you can use low fat cream cheese if you want.

CRUST:

1 package of Pamela’s Dark Chocolate, Chocolate Chunk Cookies

FILLING:

2 tablespoons of boiling water

6 ounces of 72% or higher Dark Chocolate

2 8 oz packages of Toffuti Better Than Cream Cheese cut into cubes

¾ cup of sugar OR the SPLENDA Baking combo equivalent which is what I used

2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon of salt

2 large eggs

  1. Place a rack in the middle oven and preheat to 325. Grease a nonstick mini cheesecake pan or mini meatloaf tin, or mini brownie tin.
  2. Place the cookies in a food processor/blender and make fine crumbs.
  3.  Melt the chocolate in the boiling water and set aside (you may need to use more water…use as much as you need to).
  4. In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the sugar, vanilla extract, and salt and beat 1 minute, scraping the side of the bowl. Beat in the chocolate mixture and then beat in the eggs, one at a time, just until blended. Pour the filling into the molds, dividing evenly.
  5. Bake at 20 to 25 minutes or until the tops are firm. Cool the cheesecakes in the pan for 15 minutes. Release the cheesecakes by pushing up from the bottom. Refrigerate overnight. Let stand at room temperature 10 minutes before serving.

Take from 1000 Gluten-Free Recipes

Better Than Ice Cream!

Today after my leg workout, I went to Whole Foods grocery. Whole Foods is not a store where I do my weekly shopping but if there is a special item that I want, they will usually have it. For example, they have those lovely machines that will grind up nuts for you to make your own nut butter without the added sugar. They also have some meat and really fresh, local seafood that you will not find at other chains. Today I picked up some salsa and other seasonings and found a different type of almond milk that I wanted to try. The milk is made by the “So Delicious” company and has 5 grams of protein in one cup. One cup is only 40 calories, contains 2 grams of fat, and 0 grams of sugar, and only 1 carb. It also only has 95 mg of sodium….some meat products contain more sodium than that! I will be using this up until the last week of competition prep because it is DELICIOUS in my protein shake. It is better than ice cream!

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Here is my recipe for a delicious vanilla protein shake that will have you licking the cup when you are finished. (That might just be me because just about everything tastes good at this point). 

  • 1 scoop of Gaspari Intrapro Vanilla flavored Whey Isolate
  • 1 cup of So Delicious Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 1 and 1 1/2 cups of ice

Blend for about 60-90 seconds. If you have a blender that has different settings, use the “milkshake” setting or one that mixes at a medium speed.

Enjoy! You will definitely be sad when the shake is gone!

195 calories, 5 grams of carbs, 5 grams of fat (Depends on the protein powder that you use).

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It’s More Than Good vs. Bad…

I have been at two opposite end of the dieting spectrum. At one point in my life I ate whatever I wanted, when I wanted, and didn’t care anything about it. I have also dieted down for a show to the point of extreme carb depletion with a very limited selection of food. I have seen what food can do to the body, both good and bad. If you ask anybody who has ever been on a diet and exercised what the hardest part is….they will tell you “the diet!” After all, we do have taste buds for a reason.

Eating is one of the most enjoyable activities in life. We plan majority of our social events around food….Thanksgiving, Easter, Christmas, Halloween, the Superbowl…and the list goes on. We eat mindlessly just because it is something we are expected to do and we even associate certain food with certain activities. Watch a movie and nine times out of ten you are eating popcorn. When you go on a mission to lose weight or eat healthier, it can be a very daunting task to eliminate all of the foods that you used to eat. Many people become so zealous that they avoid certain foods like the plague. But through my years of trial and error, I have learned that what we may think of as “bad” food is not necessarily bad. Living healthy is not about good vs. bad or restriction. Living healthy is about balance and better choices.

Many people at work are aware that I eat healthier than most and I workout on a regular basis. The most common question I get about my diet is whether I eat carbohydrates, if I restrict foods, or if I eat junk food. I wish I had the willpower to never eat “junk food” again but that is not happening. If I didn’t eat carbs, my body would shut down and I would not be writing this blog as we speak. After many years of struggling with food, losing weight, dieting for shows, and dealing with post-competition blues and trying to adjust to a “normal diet,”…I have decided that I am not classifying foods into good or bad categories anymore. These terms play tricks on the mind. I eat according to my goals, I eat to be healthy, I eat because I enjoy food, and I eat in a way that will leave me satisfied and feeling like I made a good decision. Unless you have allergies or a disease, or are involved in a sport that requires specific foods such as bodybuilding, you don’t need to be extreme. If there are foods you don’t like, that is fine. If you don’t want to eat them, that is perfectly fine as well. Only you know how you can control your eating.

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 Balance is the key to being healthy for life and as humans we like variety. Don’t get caught up in fad diets just because everyone else is doing it. Start tracking what you eat and you will see the amount of nutrients in your food and might even realize that what you thought was “bad” is not so bad. Become an educated food consumer, not just a blind follower of someone else’s diet plan.

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