It’s so easy to let go of everything. It’s easy to let our food and health choices derail and take away the progress that we have worked so hard for for months and years. With all of the changes that our lifestyles have undergone the past 2 years also comes the necessary change of our nutrition patterns. Are we as active as we were before? Probably not. For me it means that I was not coaching while being on my feet for hours on end, instead I was coaching while sitting down in front of my laptop. With these big change in my activity level it required me to alter my nutrition as well. This doesn’t mean that I have to change up everything that I am eating but this might mean that I have to adjust my macronutrient intake a bit. For me it was a matter of realizing that I was not as active as I like to be because I am not on my feet all day long. This means that I can still consume the same foods, I just had to be conscious of the fact that my body needed less carbs and more fats to run on.
In the past couple weeks a lot of people have been asking me what they should be eating on a daily basis. Understanding what macronutrients you should be eating is one thing. Knowing exactly what foods correspond to that is a totally different thing. The hardest thing is to actually committing to eating those foods once you know what to eat.
Let me try to make those first 2 steps a little bit easier by giving you some ideas of what to eat on a regular basis and why.
- main protein: eggs or tofu
- side: bacon, sausage, ham, avocado, cheese, nuts, seeds and peanut butter
Meal idea: 2/3 eggs scrambled or 100-150 grams of tofu, with half an avocado and 2 strips of bacon mixed in, topped with some cheese.
- If you’re vegan, add in some mushrooms and vegan cheese instead of the bacon and normal cheese
Why? All of these foods are high in fat and protein, like I have explained in previous blogs, I believe that we should put a bigger focus on eating more fats and protein throughout the day. The protein is there for us to build and hold on to our muscle mass while the fats give us energy to go about our business and gives us energy throughout the day. It will help with your energy levels throughout the day, weight management and fight chronic diseases like diabetes.
Snack 1,2 and 3
- rice cakes with peanut butter
- rice cakes with smashed avocado
- high fat yoghurt/ with blueberries, nuts and/ or seeds
- dark chocolate
Why? Eating snacks throughout the day allows us to let our bodies take in all the nutrients from our big meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and keep us satisfied to our next big meal. Eating regularly has multiple physical benefits but it also gives you something to look forward to throughout the day while working etc.. Eating on a regular basis allows the body to digest everything much better because we tend to eat smaller portions when we do (which is easier to digest). These snacks are focused on being high in fats and protein.
- Main protein: chicken, fish, beef, pork, eggs, tempeh
- vegetables: tomato, onion, broccoli, corn, spinach, peppers, kale, mushrooms, lettuce
- side: cheese, avocado, nuts, seeds, sour cream, bacon
- (Extra carbs: rice, quinoa, oatmeal, rice, apples, blueberries, bananas, mango, pineapple, grapes, pear, peach)
Meal idea: Burrito bowl: Your choice of the main foods, mix in tomatoes, onions, corn, peppers, cheese, (bacon), sour cream and guacamole
- If you’re vegan, replace the protein source with 100-150 grams of marinated tempeh and add vegan cheese instead.
why? The focus is still on eating good fats and protein but we’re mixing in some carbohydrates in the form of vegetables. Vegetables give us great glycemic value, which means that the carb density is low but they still give us a lot of nutrients and make us feel satisfied for longer periods of time. If you want to add some more carbs in I would advise to eat more fruit over anything because of the micronutrients value they provide, it’s a non processed food and it is easily digested by the body. If you work out on a daily basis I would always advice to save your carb intake for your post workout, whenever that is throughout the day. (* blueberries are one of my daily staples because they’re so rich in antioxidants, have a high glycemic value and have so many other benefits.
- main protein: fish, chicken, beef, pork, eggs, tofu
- vegetables: tomato, onion, broccoli, corn, spinach, peppers, kale, mushrooms, asparagus,
- cauliflower, carrots
- side: cheese, avocado, nuts, seeds, sour cream, bacon
Meal idea: Steak or Salmon with grilled asparagus
- If you’re vegan replace this meal with a stir-fry of tofu/tempeh, broccoli, courgette, eggplant and onions.
Why? Meals don’t have to be super complicated, sometimes the simple options are delicious and give our body exactly what it needs. Make sure to go high on the fats and protein once again, get some vegetables in and you’re good to go. Lunch and dinner could be very similar or the exact same sometimes because of how the meals are structured. Try to cut yourself of from food about 2 hours before going to bed because we want to give our body enough time to digest all the nutrients.
Now you have a basic understanding of a lot of foods that you can eat to support your activity levels throughout the day. There’re more layers to this but for now let’s keep it basic and simple.
Now you know what to do, it’s up to you to actually go out and do it.
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