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March 31, 2016

IF – Intermittent Fasting, Alisha’s Journey

After talking about Intermitting Fasting (IF) last week in our video, I just wanted to share with everyone some of the things I have learned about it and how I’m using it to get back to where I want to be, from a body image standpoint.

First off, this is not for everyone, and I would do your research to make sure this is right for you, we are not experts but just sharing with you what we have learned and what we do. If you have any questions or concerns, you should consult a medical professional.  With that being said, here’s what I found, I love me some research!  I started reading the pros and cons of IF and the health benefits, yes I said health benefits and a lot of the information I’m going to share is from the book “The Wild Diet” by Abel James.  For those that are not familiar with Abel, he was one of the trainers on the ABC show, “My Diet is Better than Yours” that aired for four weeks in January 2016. Shaun T was the host of that show, so you know we had to watch. Shaun became friends with him and thought highly of him, so we were like, “Ok if Shaun likes him, he’s probably a smart guy.”

Abel talks a lot about fasting and IF in particular, I was immediately interested in his plan because it sounded like something I could do without starving myself and you get to eat MEAT!!!!!  So far from his book I have learned a lot about food and ingredients in food, which can be a later blog post, but here’s what he says about fasting.  He also warns that it is not for everyone, but if you want to try it, you should.  Most people are trained to eat breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner and sometimes a bedtime snack.  Abel teaches you how eating a “feast” at dinner, with dinner being your largest meal, and not eating again for 16 hours helps your body burn fat, build lean muscle and help you function better.  So if you eat at 7 pm, you would not eat again until 11 am the next day, if you eat at 8 pm you would eat at 12 pm the next day, you get the point.  In that 16 hours of “fasting” your body taps into growth hormones, which boost your metabolism, build muscle, and slows aging.  You sleep through most of the 16 hours, so it makes it a little easier.  It’s ok to have coffee in the morning but you’re supposed to watch what you put in your coffee, the added sugar and creamer are not doing you any favors.  We use stevia and some research we found says you can use a little bit of creamer but not much.  Abel recommends whole fat creamer or raw butter.  Todd and I like the stevia or whole fat creamer (but again, not much!).  Make lunch your first meal with fresh vegetables, fruit, nuts and healthy fats and then have your “feast” at dinner with protein, carbs and veggies and then fruit for dessert.  Basically during the 8 hour period, you’re getting your 2-3 meals in for the day.

The-Wild-Plate1

I have been fasting for the 16 hour period and the first few days were an adjustment.  You have to listen to your body if your stomach is just growling, drink some water, but if you start to feel light-headed or dizzy, and brain fog sets in, then you might want to eat a small snack like fruit or nuts until you get used to fasting.  If you have a bad sugar addiction, you may want to ween yourself off the sugar some before you start, or Abel says you could have a rough adjustment.

After the 16 hours is up and I’m in my “eating window”, I’ve been using the 21 Day Fix portion containers to plan out my meals and food categories, that way everything stays simple.  I am not afraid to eat my carbs (2 yellow containers for me) at my evening “feast” because I will sleep better and it will give me the fuel to make it 16 hours until my next meal.  We were always told, and I repeated to a lot of you, that you shouldn’t eat carbs (or your yellow containers) at dinner, well with IF, that’s not true.  You need the carbs to get you through the next 16 hours.  What we’ve found in Abel’s book is that your body actually burns what you ate for dinner the night before, in the morning the next day for energy.  He says people always thing Breakfast is what gets you going, but he says “not true”.  According to him, whatever you eat, your body doesn’t actually use for energy for 6-8 hours.  So the breakfast you are eating now, isn’t burned off until later in the afternoon or end of the workday.  The 16 hour fast, causes your body to use fat and what’s in storage for energy and uses the “feast” from the night before for energy.

I have also been working out during my 16 hour fast (usually in the morning) which helps drop fat as quick as possible, boost production, gain muscle and improve recovery.  So you could try working out in the morning, cutting out breakfast and start with lunch and see what happens.  Abel talks about how it’s good to eat your first meal right after you workout, so on days when I’m home, I try to workout later in the 16-hour window and then eat.  I think Todd and I were both nervous about working out on an empty stomach and having the energy to do it, but so far it’s been great.  You are allowed to use your pre-workout, so that helps!

So far, I am down 3 pounds, but most importantly my waist is getting smaller.  If you watched the video, I did where I talk about my body image issues that’s where I struggle, in my mid-section and I already see results there.  Todd and I both are, the bloating is gone and gone quickly.  We’re very conscious of what we eat during our 8 hours, and yes we do have dessert sometimes, in fact, we pretty much do 85/15 or 90/10 during those 8 hours, and so far the results are good.

That’s it for today; we’ll keep posting and talking about this as we learn more and see more results.  I’m also going to blog about what I’ve learned from Abel about food and what we’re now buying and not buying anymore.

January 23, 2015

Eating Right While Doing Insanity Max:30

So as we’ve run numerous “Test Groups” with Insanity Max :30, one of if not the biggest questions people seem to have, is about nutrition. I think that’s true no matter what program or workout routine you do. But we’ll talk specifically about Insanity Max :30 and how to eat.

Calorie Counting

First things first, I’m a realist and I like to keep things VERY simple and if it’s too hard for me to do or stick with it, I’m out. So I was glad to have my Soul Brother (aka Shaun) on board with me during our first go around (and ever since) to help me understand that keeping it simple and not depriving yourself is the way to go. If you want to count calories, you can, I personally don’t feel like it’s a method that is conducive to long term success, but some people need that in order to form new and better habits. If that’s you, go for it.  One thing I’ll say and you’ll hear Shaun say in the video below, is that you really don’t know how many calories are in something unless you make it.  Plus you need to remember that a calorie is not a calorie.  A calorie in a sweet potato and a calorie in a Special K bar are not the same.  But I’ll let Shaun hit on that in the video.

Portion Control

21-day-fix-containersThis is where the rubber meets the road.  If you can master this, then you can start to gain some momentum.  This is also an easy way to take the calorie counting of your daily routine.  One of the options with Max :30 is the portion control containers.  People originally saw them with the 21 Day Fix and now Beachbody has included them into Insanity Max :30.   I wouldn’t be surprised if this is a pattern we’ll see repeated in future programs.  But, the point is, for those who struggle with what to eat and how much, this takes the guess work out of it.  It will show you how much protein, carbs, fruit and veggies to eat with out you having to guess and wonder.  If you stick with the right “number” of containers per category, it’s pretty hard to mess up your intake and your calorie consumption should pretty much fall where it needs to fall, but again…don’t get hung up on calories.

Just Use Common Sense

Remember these two numbers. 85 and 15.  If 85% of what you eat is healthy and will expire in the next 2 weeks, then you are going to do FINE.  Then you have 15% of your week or day to “treat” yourself, not “cheat”.   Shaun and I have had many discussions about this.  We could both be leaner and more ripped than we are, BUT we also know that, that kind of lifestyle and discipline is not realistic.  We both love our sweets and treats too much to give them up, and why should we?  If you are exercising and doing the things you know you need to do and eating 85% healthy, you will find the formula for a maintainable and successful life and journey.

So below is a video Shaun shot for one of our daily Webisodes that we do on our Facebook Page.  We were asked the question about nutrition and here’s his answer.

If you have any other questions or would like join one of our Test Groups or Challenge Groups, simply fill out the Contact form here and we will be in touch!

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