Nutrition 101: Part 1

We all know that even if you are busting your butt in the gym, you will not see the results unless you watch your eating habits as well. It’s about taking one step at a time and making realistic goals. Iʼm going to teach you how to build a proper diet that is realistic, beneficial to your body and enjoyable.

Water, Water, Water!! 
The First thing I would suggest is to augment your water intake. If you are not hydrated (most people are chronically dehydrated), your body cannot function at its highest potential. Muscles are made up of about 70% water; so if you’re dehydrated your performance will decrease and your recovery will be compromised. (You will probably start to feel a little thirsty now and grab a glass of water! Go for it! ) The suggested water intake is 8 glasses a day when you are not working out – obviously more when you are. This is not easy to do if you don’t regularly drink much water. Be careful if you start chugging away. Since your body is not used to it, you may feel bloated and need to hit the head (Navy term for bathroom) every five minutes!

Here are a few suggestions that will ease you into the water routine:
1. Drink a glass of water when you wake up. You’ll start your day off hydrated and wash down some of those cravings you may get in the morning. Just chug it!
2. Drink a glass of water before your meals. It is very common to misinterpret dehydration for hunger!
3. Carry a bottle of water with you. If you always have some with you it’ll make it easier to drink instead of grabbing a soda when you get a little thirsty.
*** If you drink 1 coke every day for a year you could gain 15lbs… fun!!!!
4. Add some flavor like oranges, raspberries, lemon, lime or mangos! It’ll add some taster and won’t be near the amount of sugar that is in flavored waters sold on the market.

Fruits & Veggies
Next step is to add in more fruits and vegetables. Try to add them into every meal; get creative! Look online for new recipes. If you’ve never cooked before this is the time to learn and really challenge yourself – become an awesome cook! Stir-frying veggies are extremely easy. Add some olive or coconut oil into a pan or wok, mix in the veggies and watch the magic! Beware; some things take longer than others to cook. Cutting up veggies like cauliflower into smaller pieces or steaming them will help speed the cooking process. Try to make your veggies/greens at least half of your plate. Try them with Quinoa (yummy!!), brown rice, beans, salads or add them in some chicken broth (great for these cold nights coming up) ! Vegetables can be added to anything, have fun with it!

TIP: Go for darker greens and eat the colors of the rainbow for your veggies! Ideas for seasoning: Substitute Braggs Liquid Aminos for soy sauce (less than half of the sodium and has 16 amino acids! You can find this at any local health food store) Garlic, chili flakes, ginger, salt, pepper, rosemary or anything you have lying around in your cabinets can spice up your healthy meal!

Fruit is great to have around as a snack or something to beat a craving. You can add them to your oatmeal for breakfast or on top of Greek yogurt with some natural honey. Fruit can also be added to a protein shake if you need something on the go! The options are endless. Try to have a variety of fruit, not just bananas! – Lindsey Fox