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Belly Fat

5 Mar

Waist size, not your weight is the best predictor of health!

Your waist should be less than half of your height.

I’m 5’4 and change so 65 inches / 2 = 32 is my maximum waist size measured around my belly button. I’m safe and I’m guessing Jennifer Aniston is safe too! Check your number!

Dr. Oz’s Weight Loss Tips

  • Eat a high fiber breakfast
  • Have snacks smaller than your fist, washed down with plenty of water
  • Don’t eat 3 hours before bed
  • Exercise at least 30 minutes per day!

23 and 1/2 Hours

1 Mar

This video explains my raison d’être perfectly.

Simply amazing, a must watch.

Thanks Doctor Mike Evans!

Now let’s drop and do 30 push-ups!!

The Importance of Little Indulgences

29 Feb

Yesterday was my boyfriend Matt’s 26th birthday!

I made these:

They were unreal.

If you’ve been reading this blog for awhile you probably heard about my binge eating days.

I went through a phase, ironically my at my heaviest weight, when I was totally obsessed with food – and limiting it. So much so that I’d miss out on special occasion food because I’d gone vegetarian or I wasn’t eating desserts. I ristricted myself from enjoying part of life. Then when my diet of the moment was over or the cleanse was up I’d go to TOWN on the nearest plate of brownies.

Here’s what I know now: nobody ever got fat eating one homemade Snickers.

The same is true for the reverse: nobody ever got skinny after one workout!

You can have one, not ten, and not everyday.

Food indulgence is a fine balance. I like the saying – “taste everything, eat nothing” – Bethenny Frankel.

I’m not making homemade Snickers all the time but on birthdays and special occasions one bar won’t sabotage you as long as your exercise program is on track.

One last piece of food porn for you while I’m on this topic: Cake Batter Chocolate Bark

I made this cake bark for my birthday in July!

So let yourself live every once in awhile. Once a week having a little (one snickers bar or a couple breaks off the cake bark) special treats like this won’t kill you if you are exercising and eating clean – lots of veggies, lean meat and water 95% of the week. Work hard play hard people!

The End of Binge Eating

20 Feb

Ok I’m not going to lie to you and pretend that I’m the perfect eater but I will say that I have a balanced approach to food. There was a time in my life, 25 pounds and five years ago that I had a difficult relationship with food and I was a total binge eater.

In high school I was a rower. The sport required a weight of 138.6 lbs, not a problem now but back then this was very stressful. I’m not blaming all my past food anxieties on rowing, high school in general was stressful enough but it was especially nerve-racking knowing that I would be weighed-in regularly. Needless to say I developed a lot of food stress.

I was one of the better rowers on the team and because of this many of my teammates would ask exactly what I ate and how I worked out. In the beginning this interest was flattering but it eventually became super stressful. My choice of 2% milk over skim at the breakfast table after the morning workout would come up in whispered conversations later in the day. In effort to appear perfect I started to eat very little at school and then I would come home and RAID the fridge. I ate anything I could get my hands on: massive bowls of nuts, apples, peanut butter toast, chocolate milk, etc. looking back most of my after school “snacks” probably had upwards of 2,500 calories and the eating didn’t stop there. My mom is an outstanding cook and would make absolutely gourmet dinners regularly so I’d force myself to wolf down whatever she put in front of me.

My biggest binge on record was in my grade 12 year. Over the Easter long weekend my family went to Whistler. While we were there I exercised for at least 2 hours a day, on top of skiing and I ate like a bird. I was trying to be really good because I knew we would be weighed-in after the break and I wanted to show that I’d managed to shed those last 2 lbs. The final night of the holiday my family did our Easter dinner and when confronted with chocolate bunnies I cracked. I ate my entire haul in one sitting. Immediately after this binge I thought my stomach was going to explode. I assumed the fetal position for a few hours before finally peeling myself off my bedroom floor.

If you’ve been reading this blog for awhile you have probably figured out that I’m a person that has a tenancy to lean toward extremes. I go big or go nothing and with some aspects of life this is helpful but with food, it’s dangerous. I’ve now learned the importance of balance when it comes to both food and exercise. My relationship with food is now healthy. I enjoy eating, in fact I live to eat, few things make me happier than a great steak but the key difference is I no longer eat to sabotage myself. I’ve found a healthy balance and so can you.

Here’s what I do now to control my binges:

I make it a point to eat in public
I used to binge alone and started associating food with shame. I now see food as a celebration and not something that should not be consumed alone in your bedroom. Ask yourselves: on an average day what percentage of your empty calories are you eating in front of someone else? Try to make it 0%.

I tell family and friends not to comment on my eating
It’s the reverse psychology factor I guess but whenever someone says that I eat a lot it just makes me want to eat more. My boyfriend knows this strict policy and although he eats like a sparrow he knows he can’t say anything when I polish off my plate. If someone is bugging you about food ask them to stop, if they won’t then ignore them. Own your binge eating and make it about you and not about them.

Treat myself to the good stuff
I workout hard to eat, within reason, what I want so I do. If I’m dying for pasta, I’ll make really great pasta and have just one bowl.  Or I’ll have that peanut butter cup – that saves me from eating an entire jar of peanut butter later. I try to limit myself to once a day allowing myself to go off the rails slightly.

I don’t beat myself up over food
This was my seemingly endless cycle of binging. The diet starts on Monday! Don’t fall into that same trap. If you go off the rails give yourself a break. It’s not the end of the world and just try to be a little bit better the next meal, not the next day or week.

Frozen Chocolate-Almond Bananna Bites

14 Feb

Friends of mine know that I’m all about making life plans. I have a new plan at least once a week. One reoccurring life plan I have is to move to Indonesia and start a chocolate covered frozen banana stand. Who’s with me?!

This is my healthy take on classic valentine’s chocolate. These taste like ice cream truffles! You can make this frozen treat in less than 30 minutes!

Serves 2

  • 1 banana
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips (i used organic milk chocolate but use whatever your favourite is)
  • 1 tbsp almond butter

If you have a cookie sheet use that or make a little aluminum foil tray for the banana pieces. Cut the banana into small bite sized pieces … otherwise it will taste like you’re biting into an ice cube. Put the banana tray in the freezer for at least 20 minutes and up to overnight.

Once your banana bites are frozen melt your chocolate and almond butter in a microwave on 30 second intervals, stirring to mix well.

Then dip your banana bites into the almond-chocolate mix!

Place back into the freezer for at least 10 minutes and up to overnight.

Before serving take out for 5 minutes and let them thaw slightly.

To my valentine, Matt. Thanks for being my biggest supporter and constant believer, I love you so much. I’m hoping you don’t see this before tonight!

Dumping Diet Coke

9 Feb

Diet Coke and I have a long intimate history together.

Three years ago I couldn’t get out of bed without knowing that I would have at least a can within 15 minutes of waking up. I basically had an IV diet coke drip attached to my veins – I would easily polish off 2L per day. Addicted was an understatement.

I found that the problem with drinking so much diet coke was that my sweet cravings were out of control. Even the fitness and health nut that I am my breakfasts used to consist of a diet coke and two heaping tablespoons of icing, usually Betty Crocker vanilla with sprinkles. My mid-morning snack would involve me going down to the University tuck shop and filling a loonie bag worth of 5 cent candies and promptly finish the entire bag, washing it down with another diet coke of course… all before 10 am.

I hit my rock bottom diet coke moment when I was at my cottage over the 2009 July long weekend and I had 17 cans of diet coke in one day – I’m not kidding. I had a problem and I knew I had to go cold turkey and quit.

It was tough for a month or so but I just cut it out of my life completely. I noticed a few things happen instantly:

  • I wasn’t dying for my daily candy fix
  • I didn’t even realize how bloated I was until I stopped drinking diet coke – I felt like a deflated balloon!
  • My skin improved
  • My sleeps were better

To fill the void I now drink tons of plain water, Perrier (max 500ml per day) or I use my Soda Stream. If I’m absolutely dying for a coke (about twice a year) I have the real deal. Our bodies are not used to processing aspartame, we can recognize sugar and digest it properly. Unlike diet coke which I’ve been told actually creates a coating on your intestinal wall and sticks there like gum for weeks after you’ve consumed it. Yuck!

If you’re currently struggling with diet coke addiction drop it! You’ll feel 100x better and your body will thank you for it!

Perfect Portion: Anthropologie Bowl

7 Feb

For those of you who have just moved into your own place you can understand that money I used to spend on clothing now all goes to Ikea, Anthropologie Home and Home Sense!

I love a good bowl of yogurt and granola in the morning but I find a lot of bowls are far to big. Especially because granola is calorie dense compared to cereal. With a big bowl it’s difficult to portion out the right amount – I usually end up filling the bowl and having soggy granola or eating too much. Anthropolgie’s Inside Out Bowls are the perfect portion size for yogurt and granola and they come in four different colours that are really beautiful and fun to mix and match!