After A Workout, Do this!

After a good workout, what should you do?

Eat!

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What should you eat you after a workout?

Healthy food such as:

  A complex carb + lean protein = Fuel & nourishment

One of my favorite summer post morning workout meals are steel cut oats with Jersey fresh blueberries.

I cook my steel oats two cups at a time in the crock pot. I prepare the oats according to package instructions, but I like to add my little twist to them.

What’s my spin? One medium to large peeled Fuji or Gala apple per cup of oats. One tablespoon of cinnamon, ground flax-seed, chia seeds, and a teaspoon of nutmeg. I also use part water and part almond milk (original).

With the oats already cooked, I don’t have to cook when I arrive home from the gym. I scoop out a half cup of cooked oats, toss in fresh blueberries and a little almond milk (to loosen ‘em up) and warm up the cereal in the microwave. Yummy, filling and full of fiber!  Fiber keeps the bowels moving, helps with cholesterol, blood sugar levels and maintaining healthy weight.  Nuff said!!  Lol!

I used to add bananas, but my trainer and friend hipped me to the sugar content. While training for my first figure competition, I really had to watch my sugar content, so due to the sugar, I reduced my banana intake.

While bananas are high in potassium (422 mg), high in carbs (27g), which are great for runners, they also contain a decent amount of sugar (14g).

Depending on your fitness goals, you may need to watch your sugar intake.

During the school year, when my schedule is tight, I prep the oats the same way. I pack the oats and take them to work with me and they serve as a morning snack. A full crock pot lasts me about a week.

If you are confused about the carb thing, it’s not as complicated at you think.  After reading, Tosca Reno’s, The Eat Clean Diet Recharged (which I’ve mentioned before), I got a better understanding of the “Good (complex) Carb” vs. the “Bad (simple) Carb” sensation.

The better or good carbs are known as complex carbohydrates.  The other carbs… are know as simple carbohydrates.  For more information on carbs, check out the list at the end of this post.

Today’s lean protein choice is a simple one.

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Hard boiled eggs (my lean protein source).

I boil about 18 eggs in advance and store them in the fridge. Again, if I don’t feel like cooking an omelet, I grab four eggs (two egg whites). The eggs are an excellent source of protein (6g of protein per egg).

Concerned about cholesterol?

According to the Mayo Clinic, 100% of the 186 mg of cholesterol is found in an egg is in the yolk of the egg. You can eliminate the cholesterol by only eating the egg white.

Okay, so if you’re a vegan or don’t eat a lot of meat, I didn’t forget about you. No problem! There are plenty of healthy protein alternatives, check out Health.com Top 13 Vegan and Vegetarian and Protein Sources. Seriously, I see a vegan life in my future.

Why Eat After A Workout?

Easily put, your body needs fuel… BEFORE and AFTER your workout.   I’ve read some complex articles on the topic, but I’ll try to keep this simple.

Like a car, your body needs fuel to perform optimally.The body needs a good source of fuel before you workout so you have the energy throughout your workout. No two bodies are the same.

How much and what you eat BEFORE your workout depends on the activity, the intensity, the duration, and your fitness goals. Of course you don’t want to overeat, but also for the sake of “losing weight,” you should avoid working out on an empty stomach because it is ineffective and wastes the time spent in the gym.

Remember the goal is to maintain a healthy lifestyle not to adapt an extreme diet that is unhealthy, unrealistic and something that you cannot keep up with for any great length of time. Beware of all the fad diets; they don’t work.

So after your workout, you’re feeling all good and pumped up. But now you have to complete the last step and refuel the body.

AFTER your workout, the faster the protein and carbohydrates get into your body the better. 

In one way or another, you’ve broken down and burned out your muscles.  The final step is to eat well (within the hour if possible) to nourish the body and allow your muscles to rebuild and repair.  If you don’t eat, the “rebuilding” process will not occur and you will have wasted valuable time and energy.

As soon as I walk off the gym floor, I head to the locker room. I wash my hands, drink a protein shake and eat a couple of  plain unsalted rice cakes. I learned this from my friend and trainer during my figure competition training. I usually drive straight home.

When I get home, the real post-workout meal gets wolfed down.

On this particular day, my post workout meal was the steel oats and hardboiled eggs.

Okay so I said way more than I planned in this post.  However, I felt necessary to elaborate because if you’re trying to change your lifestyle and get fit, you must learn to eat better.

You can work out 24/7, but if you skip meals, eat crap (processed foods) before or after your workout, eat garbage on your rest days, you won’t see results.  I am asked about what and how I eat, so I’m taking the time to share what I’ve learned with you.

Think consistency. There are no easy fixes. Think lifestyle!

I hope this info helps.

Keep it movin’ :)

Additional Readings

The Carbohydrate Manifesto

CDC Nutrition For Everyone- Carbohydrates

Good Carbs, Bad Carbs October – Bread

Post Workout Nutrition

Never Diet Again!

Enjoying Fresh Produce At The Jersey Shore

Living at the Jersey Shore, The Garden State in the summer has perks. We’re not called the Garden State for nothing.  According to NJ’s official web pageNew Jersey is home to more than 9,071 farmers, covering 715,057 acres of farmland. 

Roadside veggie and fruit stands are plentiful. Nearly every rural road has at least one or more aged wooden stands filled with make shift shelves that are covered with baskets full of fresh produce.

The locals know where to find them, but out of towners’ are often surprised and make emergency stops to get it on the action.

Sweet corn, pretty Jersey tomatoes, plump blue berries, sweet and juicy peaches, squash, and zucchini are some of my summer favorites and I take full advantage of the season.

I think zucchini is my favorite summer veggie. Learn more about zucchini here and here.   While I have my go-to recipe for zucchini, I’m always looking for different recipes to infuse my zucchini with new flavors.

My pet recipe is quick and simple:

Ingredients

  • 2 zucchini (Medium size)
  • 2 vidalia onions or red onions (personal preference)
  • 2 tsps. fresh ground black pepper
  • Dash of crushed red peppers
  • Dash of Lowry’s season salt (I only use this when I’m cooking for my                      family)
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil (estimate… I’ve gotta learn to measure!)

Instructions:

Thoroughly wash and dry zucchini. Cut the ends off. Cut zucchini in half and then slice. I prefer mine sliced in half, but you can cut whole slices. Toss on to a sheet of aluminum foil. Half onion and then slice. Put the onions in with zucchini, add dry seasoning, and olive oil. Fold foil so juices don’t leak out.

Place foil pocket on a grill at medium temperature. Cook for about 20 minutes.

sliced

This is cooking at its easiest. There’s no excuse to not eat healthy.

foil

Zucchini is safely tucked away in the foil.

zucchini

Finished result…. Yummy!  This is great over brown rice, quinoa, or alone.

Two days ago, I found a different recipe on Pinterest, compliments of thepioneerwoman.com. The zucchini is delicious, but has a complete different flavor.

Seriously, that’s what I love most about fresh veggies. I can eat say, zucchini for dinner five consecutive days, but each night, the zucchini can be cooked different and infused with a unique flavor. I never get tired of zucchini, but I’m not asking my family if they are tired of it.  I may not like the answer.  Lol!

Anyways, I tried the  Grilled Zucchini with Lemon Salt recipe.  As one of my friends would say,

“Outstanding!!”

Lol!  All you need is zucchini, lemon, black pepper, kosher salt, and olive oil. For specific instructions and details, click here.

bagged zuchiiLemon zest, olive oil, salt, and pepper all in one bag coating zucchini!

on the grill

Here they are cooking nicely on the grill. The anticipation was killing me. Lol!

grilled zucchini

Mmmm…. If you’re eating this at home, consider this finger food,
because using a knife takes too dag on long!  :)

Give it a try; you might like it.

Do you have quick summer recipe?  Please share!

Thanks for visiting and enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

Delightful Summer Salad

To look at me, you wouldn’t think I enjoy food, but I do!  Today I tried a new Quinoa Chickpea and Avocado Salad recipe.  It was delightful!! My mouth is watering again, just thinking about it.

I found the recipe on Pinterest, which brings me to the main point of this post.  If you are serious (not just giving lip service) about getting on track to eating better, there is no magic formula.

Allow yourself to be free to try to acquire a taste for new foods. I perfectly understand being squeamish about eating delicacies of foreign origin.  But how can you turn your nose up to natural foods that grow from God’s soil?

Many of the foods I eat today, I was not exposed to as a child.  Some I more recently started eating and did so only out of a want to appreciate and to make healthier food choices, such as eating avocados.

I thought avocados were the ugliest foods. Even the shade of green is ugly! With a nickname, “Alligator Pear,” who would want to eat that?   That is until it’ sliced open. Then the beauty is exposed by the vibrant lime green and odd round wood like seed.

The first time I ate an avocado, it was blah… eh… okay, but nothing to brag about. After reading about all the benefits of Avocados, I was determined to find a way to include them in my diet and I did!!!

Okay so enough rambling.  The recipe is courtesy of skinnytaste.com  You have to try it!

Quinoa Chickpea and Avocado Salad Skinnytaste.com Servings: 4 • Size: 1 1/4 cups  • Old Points: 5 pts • Points+: 6 pts Calories: 248 • Fat: 7 g • Carb: 41 g • Fiber: 8 g • Protein: 9 g • Sugar: 1 g Sodium: 403 mg (without salt)

Ingredients

tomatoe

It was hard not to eat the tomatoes and not put them in the recipe. Lol!!

beans

Quinoa

I did cook the Quinoa. I just wanted you (if you’ve never brought it) to see what it looks like packaged.

onion

The recipe called for red onion, but I had a bunch of Vidalia onions, so I substituted. They are sweet onions and tasted just fine.

cilantro lime]

How could anyone like “green” foods?  The Cilantro’s scent is as strong as its flavor. Mmm..

cucumber

I know I should have sliced the cucumber, but I was in a hurry. :)

salt

I don’t usually cook with salt, but I did use a little of this good stuff.

avocado

Gorgeous! Lol!

Directions: Combine all the ingredients except for avocado and cucumber, season with salt and pepper to taste. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. Just before serving, add cucumber and avocado. Makes 5 cups.

Qsalad

The finished product!  OMG!! You gotta try this!  Scrumptious!! Thank you sknnytaste.com!

Give it a try!  I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Enjoy your weekend!  :)

This Is Why I Love The Summer

When I woke up this morning, it took me a bit more time than usual to get into the swing of things.  Why?

Because yesterday, I was determined to get weight training AND cardio in.  I walked on the gym floor at 9:50 a.m. and did back.  If I remember correctly, I did:

  1. Pull up assist – wide grip – 3 sets of 15
  2. Pull up assist – narrow grip – 3 sets of 15
  3. Body rows using the Smith Machine – 3 sets of 10 Ugh!
  4. Lat Pull down – wide grip – 3 sets of 12
  5. Lat Pull down – narrow grip – 3 sets of 12
  6. Barbell upright row – 3 sets of 10
  7. T-Bar row – 3 sets of 12
  8. Seated cable row – 3 sets of 12
  9. Face pulls on capable machine – 3 sets of 12
  10. Rope pull (standing) 30 sec. superset with 10 push ups x 4

My muscles were fried, but I got in my car and drove about 20 minutes to the Ocean City Bridge.  Although it was hot as heck out, the bridge stands high over the water so there was a constant breeze.

Oh yeah!  I did some ab work too!  Just three different exercises… all together about 310 reps.  All but 75 were using weights.  Lol!

bridge

The bridge has a nice walkway and fishing pier underneath. I thought this perspective was cool!

I changed sneakers and ran the bridge! “Running the bridge” means you run the bridge, turn around and run back over it again. Lol!  Some people say I’m nuts, but I am a fitness junkie, enthusiasts or whatever else you can come up with.  I love working out, especially when time is not an issue.

This is why I love the summer!  

I can workout for as long as I want to! :)

mapmyrun

The last time I ran the bridge was last summer. Since my summer break (June 26), I have wanted to run the bridge, so you can image how excited I was yesterday.  I think this was also my first real run (outside of crossFit) this year.

I took it slow.  Didn’t want to hurt myself.  My time was actually a little better because my iPod locked and I spent a few minutes fumbling with it.

Anyways… the run was heavenly!!  I felt free and on top of the world!  A hot sunny day, running across a bridge that, less than a year ago, I was terrified to run.  Thanks to my friend Nicole, the bridge isn’t an issue anymore.  Ha!!  How about that!!

So, today I did crossFit.  Yeah, my quads, shoulders, abs and back were sore, but I knew once I got moving, I’d be fine.

SWOD: 10-15 Min to work up to 1 rm Snatch – I worked on perfecting my snatched, so I practiced at 75 pounds which was plenty.

WOD: 18 Min – EMOM (Every min on the min)

Min 1- 20 m sled push
Min 2- 10 kb clean and jerk + Lunge 5L/5R
Min 3- 20 double under/ 5 HSPU (handstand push up)

My double under’s aren’t so hot, so to keep the momentum, I did 40 singles.  Using a box, I did my hand stand push ups.

So after the WOD, the coaches decided that we needed to do a buy out. Yuck!

Buyout

3 Rounds

20 Abmats
20 Russian Twists
20 Hollow Rocks

Stick a fork in me, I was and still am done!

I’m headed to bed now.  The “plan” is to workout early tomorrow morning. How early? Umm… 5 a.m.!

Sweet dreams and keep it movin’!