As a general rule, when ever I begin with a new client, one of the first things I have them do is start keeping a food journal for me to check weekly. This applies to all clients regardless of their fitness goals. If you are spending your hard-earned money on a Personal Trainer, you should maximize your results. And the best way to do this is through proper nutrition.
I am sure most clients do not think I am serious about wanting to look at it, because they usually don’t show up with it the first few times. After a bit of prodding on my part, they sheepishly bring it in, with it half completed. Before I even begin looking at it, the excuses as to why it is not filled out properly begin to flow.
What most people don’t realize is that as a trainer, my job is to encourage you to stay on track, not to lecture you when you fall by the wayside.My goal is to educate you as much as possible so you are able to succeed and one day be able to do this all on your own. That is the purpose of todays blog. I want to give you a few strategies to help with keeping healthy food on hand so you are able to eat in a more healthy way.
I realize we all lead busy lives but that is no reason we can not eat better. Lets use me as an example. I usually work 6 1/2 days per week; if I am lucky, I get a whole day off, but usually only half a day. Today I prepared enough food for at least 2 days, maybe three and it only took 2 hours of my afternoon. In that time I was able to prepare some roast chicken, spaghetti squash with homemade tomato sauce, roasted root vegetables, baked potatoes, and carrot ginger soup. Some may say that because I was a professional chef for 20 years, it gives me an unfair advantage over most. But I would disagree. All it takes is a little planning and some time to do the cooking.
4 Easy Steps
Planning-What normally works for me is to plan what I am wanting to cook. I usually choose ingredients that are in season, so I can take advantage of what is produced locally.
Inspiration-Once I decide the main ingredients that I want to work with, I search out some low-fat, healthy recipes, or go through lists of earlier dishes I have made and really enjoyed to see if that will help inspire me. When in doubt I search out recipes on my favorite food sites such as:http://everydaypaleo.com/ , http://www.livestrong.com/ , http://www.precisionnutrition.com/ Whatever you choose to make, make sure that it is tied in to your fitness goals. Keep things low in fat, high in protein, incorporate lots of veggies and go easy on the starchy carbs.
Shopping-For myself I usually go to the grocery store or market the day I want to do the cooking, but I know for some people they like going the day before. What ever works best for you, stick with that. Have a list ready to go so you are not tempted to pick up something you don’t need. When you are purchasing meat, choose cuts that are less fatty than others and have a higher protein content. For example, chicken breast instead of thighs, or top sirloin steak instead of ribeye.
Cooking-I set aside time in the afternoon to prepare everything I have planned. It usually only takes me a couple of hours unless I get really ambitious and want to freeze a few things. Have everything pre-portioned and ready to go to make it more convenient during the week as well.
Although it takes a bit of discipline to do this every week, it is really very easy to do. Give it a try to see how much progress you make with your fitness goals.