Yesterday, as soon as I got home from volunteering, I headed out for a 3.5 mile run. The run was originally scheduled the day before, but it was raining pretty hard so I decided to postpone it for a day. It wasn’t my fastest time. Although I wasn’t sore directly after the Body Pump training weekend, I think that my muscles are definitely fatigued and not able to work as hard this week…but I am pushing through!
I then came in to cool down and bake some cookies for the women I am volunteering with at the Symphony. The event that they are coordinating is this coming Monday, so Friday (tomorrow) is really their last day to get all of the loose ends tied up and I thought some Oatmeal Raisin cookies would help them power through 😉
And before heading to church choir practice I quickly stopped at Target to pick up some red workout gear. The colors of Body Pump are red and black, and while you aren’t required to wear the Les Mills clothing or even red and black it helps to be in “the essence” (that is what my trainers called it). And I totally agree! When I think of putting on special clothes to teach Body Pump, it is almost like putting a costume on for show choir. I am able to get in the zone, and it just wouldn’t be the same without it 🙂
Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to try the clothes on and the shorts were just too baggy. Not exactly the look I am going for. Looks like I will have to return them!
After team teaching my second Body Pump class this morning, I was more than ready for breakfast and luckily had a bowl of overnight oats with y name written all over it.
10 Foods that Are Making You Fat
Yesterday, Brian sent me a link to an article on Cha Cha about 10 foods that are secretly making it hard for us to lose weight. I thought this article was particularly interesting because for me, I think about this kind of thing all the time and try to always be aware of what I am putting in my body, but Brian pointed out to me that not everyone thinks like that and may not realize the harm in some of these foods. So, here is the list with a little bit of my own insight about how to stay in the safe zone!
1. Salad Dressing–Many people are aware that the creamy dressings pack on a lot of fat and calories (sometimes making your salad choice worse than a burger!), but we also have to be careful when it comes to dressings that may seem lighter like Italian and Balsamic Vinaigrette. When using dressings at home, it is always best to measure out your portion sizes according to the label so that you know exactly what you are getting.
- Salad Dressing Alternatives–Using simply vinegar along with salt, pepper, garlic, and spices of your choice is always a great option…and has almost no calories! Mixing vinegar with a tablespoon of hummus or using salsa are some other great alternatives that packs a lot of flavor.
2. Mayonnaise–Only one tablespoon of this creamy sauce has 90 calories, not to mention the fact that there are a lot of processed ingredients usually used to make the dressing. On a sandwich, try subbing mustard or a small amount of avocado (1 Tablespoon). If you are making tuna or chicken salad, sub non or lowfat plain Greek yogurt. You will lower the number of calories and boost up the amount of protein in your meal.
- Mayo Alternative–Small amount of avocado or mustard on a sandwich. Lowfat or nonfat Greek yogurt in tuna, chicken, or potato salads.
3. White Bread–When it comes to choosing white bread versus whole grain or whole wheat bread, you always want to choose the whole grain/wheat. White bread is what we can call a fast releasing carbohydrate due to the way the body processes the food. When the body processes fast releasing carbohydrates it causes a big spike in the blood sugar levels causing the body to release more insulin. After a lifetime of these blood sugar spikes and your body not utilizing this excess sugar, a person could eventually develop diabetes and this excess sugar is stored in the body as fat. Without getting too in depth (there is a lot that goes into the way our body processes carbohydrates)
- White Bread Alternative–whole grain or whole wheat bread
4. Regular Soda–One can of regular soda has around 150 calories. If someone were to drink one can of soda a day, that would be over 1,000 calories added to your diet! By simply cutting out this drink and replacing it with water, you will lower your sugar and caloric intake greatly.
- Regular Soda Alternative–sparkling water with a splash of 100% cranberry juice with a squeeze of fresh lime, or just plain water!
5. Ketchup–Ketchup is LOADED with sugar, with around 8g of sugar in only 2 tablespoons of this condiment. With this sauce, really watch portion sizes and limit your consumption to every once in a while.
- Ketchup Alternative–salsa, plain tomato sauce, or just limit your portion sizes.
6. Artificial Sweeteners–There is a lot to be said about artificial sweeteners. The article by Cha Cha points out the fact that artificial sweeteners are not satisfying to our bodies that want the “real thing” leaving us craving and eating more in order to feel “satisfied.” There is also a lot of research about the chemical effects of these artificial substances in our bodies. When it comes down to it, it is always best to be as natural as possible. And simply because a box says “all natural ingredients” doesn’t mean that the ingredients are actually natural. We need to actually read the label, and research any ingredients we may not be familiar with.
- Artificial Sweetener Alternatives–Stevia (to date) is one of the safest sugar alternatives. Some low glycemic sweeteners that are great alternatives are agave nectar and palm sugar.
7. Restaurants--This article notes that most foods at restaurants are cooked in butter or grease. Salads are served with more than a regular portion size of high fat nuts, cheeses, dried fruits, and salad dressings. Trying to stay healthy, but enjoying a meal at a restaurant can seem like two conflicting tasks, but don’t worry…you can eat healthy and enjoy dining out at the same time 🙂
- Restaurant dining tips–always check out nutrition information online before heading out to the restaurant so that you can be informed when you make your order. Ask for sauces on the side so that you can control the amount you put on your dish. Have 3/4 of your plate full of veggies and a portion of protein that is the same size and width as your own palm. Avoid the bread basket, and don’t be afraid to make special requests (like asking for your broccoli to be steamed instead of cooked in butter 😉 )
8. Chicken Tenders–Another thing that the article makes note of is that a lot of people think that simply because something is chicken, it is automatically healthy…which is not the case. Chicken tenders are almost always fried and served with high calorie dipping sauces. When dining out, opt for grilled chicken or make your own “healthified” tenders at home.
- Chicken Tenders Alternative–Use organic, free range, boneless, skinless chicken breasts dipped in egg whites and coated in almond meal to bake up your own chicken tenders as a substitute option for high fat, fried chicken tenders.
9. Specialty Coffee Drinks–We all love a good latte or icy coffee drink every once in a while, but they can pack on a lot of fat, sugar, and calories. Try to make drinks like this a special treat and enjoy them only every once in a while. Not only will you save calories, but you will save money too!
- Specialty Coffee Drink Ordering Tips–Only get these fancy drinks as a special treat, ask for no whipped cream, opt for skim or lowfat milk, and order the smallest size.
10. Cheese–Cheese isn’t necessarily bad for you, but it is another food where we need to watch our portion sizes. It is always best to choose a lower fat option rather than a full fat or no fat. The no fat options tend to have some chemicals in place of the fat to help with the consistency and the flavor, and our body needs fat to process fat…so low-fat is the better option.
- Cheese Alternatives–Simply watch your portion sizes on this one and opt for low fat options.
What are some of your favorite tips for healthy eating and watching portion sizes?