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Archive for June, 2011

Hi everyone,

It’s a new Monday and I am continuing with our diet challenges and this week we will be adding another healthy eating habit that will support our training and body composition goals.

During the first challenge we started to include Superfoods into our meals as often as possible. I shared a basic list of Superfoods as a starting point. Then in the second challenge we made the transition from eating 3 meals per day to eating Superfoods 4 to 5 times per day and we started to get our heads around the idea that every time you eat, it’s an opportunity to make your body better (or worse).

Challenge 3 is about adding foods – specifically complete lean proteins and making sure that you have these proteins on your plate along with the other superfoods. Our bodies rely on proteins and amino acids to produce important molecules – without enough protein in our diet our bodies can’t function well at all. Making sure you are getting lean protein with each of your 4 to 5 meals per day can also help to control body fat.

Lean protein does not just have to mean meat – there are plant base sources including but not limited to: tofu, black beans, kidney beans, low fat cottage cheese, low fat plain yogurt, omega 3 eggs, and protein supplements. Meat based complete lean protein includes, but is not limited to: lean turkey meat, salmon, chicken breasts, etc….

Taking on this challenge is another small step towards a diet that supports your fitness and  body composition goals. I know it can be tough to hit the rules of these challenges 100% of the time, because life has a way of screwing up your best diet intentions. The best and most realistic approach is to just do the best you can. The better you do with your diet the more results you can expect from your training.

This challenge is on. If you guys have any suggestions, tips, or recipes, please share in the comments below.

Best,

Jessy

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Diet Challenge #2

Hi Everyone,

Are you ready for our 2nd diet challenge for this week. If you are new to the site and would like to start following our diet challenges, we suggest that you start with the first one.

As you probably know, working out on a regular basis is important, you can check out the home workouts page for great ideas for burning fat and boosting your metabolism. Training however is just part of the approach that you need to cover if you want to make life improving progress with your body composition. To make the big changes you will have to start paying closer attention to your diet. I started these week long mini-diet challenges so that as a group we can take small, manageable steps towards establishing healthy eating habits that will not only support your training, but also your weight and fat loss goals.

Last week’s challenge centered around Superfoods, and by now you should have started to shift towards eating mostly from the list of Supefoods we provided and the many additional Superfoods that are suggested. Making this into a habit is likely to take more than just a week, but hopefully you have started to include a lot more of those foods in your grocery shopping and they are stocked in your kitchen so that they are now a possible healthy choice for you when you have the opportunity to eat. The more that you consistently choose to eat, the more you  are supporting your overall health and your weight and fat loss goals.

As a means of continuing on from Diet Challenge #1, it is important to understand that most Superfoods have a low calorie density which means that you are going to have to eat them 4-5 times per day to meet your calorie needs, especially if

you are following our workouts and exercise challenges and are active. That brings us to this weeks Diet Challenge which is to break out of the old habit of eating 3 times per day and move to eating “healthier” foods 4-5 times per day.

If your goal is weight loss you should be looking at eating veggies and fruits as based meals 4-5 times per day. Most people out there eat 3 times per day which experts believe is an inadequate way to feed the body. Eating Superfoods 4 or more times per day is one of the most important strategies for improving health and body composition. Regular eating intervals stimulates the metabolism, balances blood sugar and helps to maintain lean mass while giving the body a reason to burn off extra fat mass.

If your goal is to gain weight in the form of lean muscle, then you should aim to eat Superfood based meals between 6-8 times per day.

These methods have been used by real trainers and coaches for years to help thousands of real people loose weight and improve their body compositions. I am comfortable following this approach because it is sustainable and has lead to lasting results. The simplicity of this approach is that it is based on eating healthy food. It is important to realize that every time you eat you have the opportunity to choose to make your body better or worse – your choices and behaviors either move you towards your goals or away from them. Making these choices and setting the direction of our goals is up to each of us as individuals, and depending on what you want to achieve you can choose what works for you.

Moving into this second challenge opens up a great opportunity for researching new Superfoods to expand your list and looking into new recipes and creative ways to prepare tasty Superfood based meals. The power of doing this challenge as a group is that we can share our discoveries together here on the site and offer tips, suggestions and support. Diet Challenge #2 is mainly about stepping up the Superfoods challenge, and for many people this becomes about logistics. Eating more often will require some advanced planning and new strategy. Getting access to those extra meals may require you to pack food with you. It is important to remember that people from all kinds of different jobs with all kinds of different schedules have found creative ways to make this work. Don’t get discouraged – we are not talking about building the pyramids here or planning a maned landing on Mars 🙂 Let’s make this happen!

Best,

Jessy

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Diet Challenge #1

I’m kicking off this summer with a series of diet challenges to be done every week.

Even though these challenges are one week long, that does not mean that after one week you should give up on them. We are focusing on making little changes to our diet gradually, and over the next few months by taking tiny steps each week we will end up making powerful changes that will support our health, fitness and fat loss goals.

Now lets talk about this weeks challenge 🙂

It is a very common approach in most diets to start by eliminating foods, and subtracting all kinds of “bad foods”. Instead, I decided to take a different approach to start things off. This week I want everyone to focus on adding as many of the Superfoods to each meal as much as possible. Remember, that means every time you eat, be it a snack, a quick bite on the run, or a sit down dinner.

The list below is by no means the only foods that fall into this category, but the list is a great starting point and reference for you when you are at the grocery store this week.

Sticking with this weeks challenge requires focus and awareness. Every time you eat, think about ways that you can include them in your meals and snacks. Including them means that they should be present – ideally a few in each meal, but it does not mean that you can only eat the foods listed below.

I will be posting a recipe or two this week and next that shows you how I incorporate these foods. You guys might want to look up some recipes that include some of these foods or start by making salads that include some combinations of these foods – side salads are a great and simple way to get going. I want to also encourage you guys to share your recipes, shopping lists, food choices and any other suggestions etc in the comments below.

We are all in this together, and this is just the starting point of a whole series of challenges that I am taking on over the next few months. Little changes can reap huge rewards and choosing to eat foods that support your goals is a great place to start the process of self improvement. Our next challenge will start next week, make sure to stay tuned.

Here is my list:

Protein – lean red meat, salmon, omega 3 eggs, low fat – plain yogurt, greek yogurt, black beans, kidney beans, low fat cottage cheese (lactose free if you can find it), chicken breasts, turkey breasts, protein supplements (whey protein isolates, milk protein isolates, or rice protein isolates)

Veggies and Fruits – spinach, tomatoes, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, oranges, mixed berries, lettuce, bananas, grapefruits, cucumbers, collards

Other Carbs – mixed beans, quinoa, whole oats

Good Fats – mixed nuts, avocados, extra virgin olive oil, fish oil, flax seeds (ground), coconut milk

Drinks – green tea, liquid exercise drinks (quickly digested carbohydrate and protein)

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