It’s Stoptober- the month smokers try their best to quit. Even though I don’t smoke I am going to try use Stoptober to quit eating crap food for a month. I need to challenge myself again. So join me as we try get in shape for Xmas so we can make some extra room for all that nice food on Xmas day.
Make a change
Eating clean and getting fit is not only a physical challenge but more importantly it is a mental challenge. Making a positive change in your life means stepping out of our “ comfort zone”. The Comfort Zone isn’t a physical place, it’s a way of life that avoids anything that might be painful. Instead we need to welcome the pain into our life (getting up early to workout, eating clean) so that we can see the endless possibilities we can achieve. Comfort food is our symbol of our comfort zone. We convince ourselves that we are happier to be eating a pizza or chips than to be eating a salad. We convince ourselves that we are happy with our weight, that we don’t think that toned lean look is attractive “oh that’s too muscly” etc. We are lying to ourselves, convincing ourselves we are happy. I know when I eat badly it tastes so good but them immediately I feel like crap. The Comfort Zone makes us feel good in the moment. Who cares what the future penalty will be? But the penalty does come and you will have realised you never lived up to your potential. The worst thing we can do is lie to ourselves, it makes change impossible.
Eating clean does not mean having to eat tasteless foods it doesn’t even mean having to give up your nice tasty treats. So once you realise that you are lying to yourself and you want to get out of the comfort zone, you need to accept that you won’t see results without pain. The problem with our society today is that we constantly expect gratification. You need to get this out of your head, there is no quick fix, you need to welcome the pain into your life, work hard and eventually you will see the results. Don’t fear the pain welcome it. This change in your attitude will not only have an effect on your health but it will also trigger good things to happen in other areas of your life.
So now that I want to move out of the comfort zone what is the first step?
Eating healthy is all about preparing your meals. I can’t reiterate that enough. If you are not prepared you are more than likely to seek a quick fix (chocolate/crisps etc). Never let yourself become starved throughout the day as this also increases the chances of you eating a biscuit or other processed quick fix type foods. So always prepare snacks to eat throughout the day.
On Sunday I try to do a big shop so that I can be prepared for the week ahead. I am not a big fan of cooking up food for the week ahead and placing them into lunch boxes and freeze them for the week. I find the chicken gets really tough, the food is not fresh, the salad goes soggy and you get so sick of the same food. When eating clean I try to eat fresh and tasty foods. If you eat the same bland clean food all week, you are more likely to go “f**k this” and revert back to your old habit of “comfort food”.
I am lucky that my boyfriend and I cook and prepare our food together for the week, this not only saves you a lot of money but also gives you a break every second evening. I also prefer other people’s cooking to my own. So one of us will cook up a meal that evening and when we are dishing it out on to our plates we also put some in our lunch boxes for the next day. So that means you have fresh tasty food for two meals.
How do I know what to eat and when to eat?
I work out in the morning so best to get your carbs in straight after your workout to feed your muscles in order for them to recover and grow. So if you workout in the evenings I would advise you eat your carbs after your workout to feed your muscles. I rotate days where I will eat carbs for breakfast and carbs for lunch and then the next day just have carbs for breakfast- keeps the body guessing.
This is what my day looks like:
· Rolled Steel Oats porridge made with water and pour almond milk on it when cooked-make sure the oats are rolled steel oats.
· Omlette – 1 egg yolk, 3 egg whites, spinach and feta cheese with an half an avocado
· Protein shake
· Handful of almonds and walnuts mix
· Blueberries and raspberries
· Dinner from the night before
· Greek yoghurt with almonds
· Rice cake and hummus
· Chicken Salad/Flafel Salad/ Salmon Salad
· Chicken/green veg or Salmon/green veg
· Crustless quiche
· Rolled steel cut oats
· Almond milk
· 24 eggs ( I eat so many eggs)
· Salt free nuts
· Full fat greek yoghurt (more sugar in low fat ones)
· Few packets of rocket/salad leaves
· Feta cheese
· Loads of green veg for each day-spinach for breakfast, greens for your salad, green veg for dinner
· Chicken/Salmon/ Tuna- protein sources
· Wholemeal rice cake for snacks
· Invest in various spices (cumin/turmeric etc) to make curries
· Tin of tomatoes- always have these handy- great to make soups and curries
· Coconut Flour- to use in curries and soups
· Coconut oil- healthy oil to use for cooking
· Cider vinegar- healthy dressing salad
· Chilli flakes- great to flavour salads
· Tin of chickpeas- great for salads or as a snack
· Coconut flakes- great for salads or a snack
· Kidney beans-great for salad
Try avoid the treat day on week one. Then add one cheat day for the next three weeks. A treat day does not mean make a pig of yourself!!
Crustless quiche (pre cooked)
Falafel Salad-rocket, salami, roasted chickpeas, grilled tomatoes (dinner and packed lunch)
Greek yoghurt and fruit and nuts
Nuts and cranberries
Chicken Salad and hummus
Boiled egg snack (very filling)
Salmon, green beans, avocado and feta cheese
Chicken bean salad
Michelle's green curry (made from scratch)