Ready, Set...Meal Plan!

In the end, do you know what is one of the biggest denominators in causing folks to fail towards reaching their fitness goals?

The wrong workout plan?
Nope.

The wrong trainer?
Nope.

The wrong Lululemon yoga pants?
Noooooope.

Lack of follow through with their nutrition plan?
Yep.

So what is it that causes nice and well intentioned people like you and me to throw in the towel when we know exactly what we should be eating everyday?

Proper planning my friends.

Preparing healthy meals takes time and energy. If you have not planned ahead, making healthy food choices is the first priority to go out the window when meal time comes. It is the end of the day or heck, it is lunchtime and you are tired, hungry and brain-dead so you want the quickest and most convenient option at hand. 9 times out of 10 you will grab something that is a far cry from the nutritious fuel your body needs.

When we are tired and hungry we do not have the strong willpower to make the best  decision over the convenient decision. The trick is to make the best-for-us decision THE convenient-for-us decision. There is only one way to make that happen and that is by pre-preparing our meals.

Now if you are like me that can be a royal pain in my tricep. Between picking the dishes, buying the groceries, and actually preparing the dishes it is enough to drive me straight to the Eggo Waffles in my freezer.

Lucky for you I have found two fantastic websites that make the meal planning, shopping, and prepping process crazy easy.

www.emeals.com and www.onceamonthmom.com

These are two fantastic and affordable websites where you can buy meal plans that include shopping lists and recipes for prepping by the week ( Emeals ) or prepping by the month ( Once A Month Mom ). Both sites have a variety of menu options, including Paleo.

Now you have no excuses so reeeeady…set…MEAL PLAN!

The 1200 Calorie Lie

While testing body composition in The Dunk Truck

I commonly hear this story...

"I use an online calorie tracker and it tells me

I should be eating 1200 calories per day to reach

my goals."

10 times out of 10 times this person's goals are to lose

fat and gain muscle.              

Guess what?

No matter what their online fitness calculations tell them,

eating a meager 1200 calories per day is not going to give

them the results they want. 

The key to long term successful weight loss is

consuming adequate nutrition that supports

muscle gain and fat loss. 

Truth #1 : If you do not consume enough calories your body

will feed off of your muscle versus feeding off of your fat.

Truth #2: Your muscle is your best calorie burning ally.

The more of it you have, the more calories you burn

doing absolutely nothingt.

Truth #3: There are good calories and bad calories.

(Stay tuned for a future blog post for more info on this topic.)

Truth #4: The most accurate way to determine the amount of

calories you need to be consuming per day is to determine

your correct body composition. (This is where Dunk Truck comes in.)

But I love my online calorie tracking site...

Online calorie trackers are fantastic resources for tracking, motivation,

and finding community but must be used strategically and with a

certain amount of education about your own body and its needs.

Your next 2 steps:

1. Eat more nutritious food now.

2. Sign up here to get an accurate

body composition assessment.

 

 

 

 

 

Your body as the great scientific experiment.

How many times have you tried a new regimen to accomplish your fitness goals? 

Recently I did a 30 day Paleo challenge. - It was the worst month of my life. 

My body composition did not change drastically nor did I feel much difference. I found myself to be consistently hungry and depleted of energy during my workouts.

Screw Paleo right?

Nope.

We all have the same need for three basic nutrients: fats, carbohydrates, and protein. People need basically the same ratio of these nutrients to function.  Some of us need those nutrients in slightly different ratios to function optimally.

Some function best off more fat, some off more protein, and some, like me, function off more carbohydrates.

A nutritionist may argue me on this but here is the thing, my body is my body and the only true way for me to discover how to get it to perform at an optimal level is to experiment with my nutrition and see how it responds. From my personal experience with the Paleo diet where the focus is on consumption of healthy fats and proteins I found myself severely lacking sufficient energy. 

The proof is in the pudding and my pudding needs more carbs.

Some folks can jump tall buildings and leap across canyons practicing the Paleo way of eating. That just is not me.

Now could I be wrong and could it be more fat that I need as my coach so passionately believes? Absolutely, but the only way for me to find out how my body works best is to strategically test it.

This is true for each aspect of your health. Only you can discover how much rest you need. Maybe you only need 6 hours of sleep a night, maybe you need 10.

Only you can figure out what type of exercise, rest, and nutrition regimen will put your body at an optimal level of performance.

Maybe your body just loves Crossfit, but maybe your body loves yoga even more, or maybe your body needs a combination of both.

The truth here is not that you need to go on an ever reaching search for the perfect regimen.

The truth is that you need to begin to view your body as your greatest ally and insider to what actually works for you. 

If you have been doing something for a consistent amount of time, which we will say is 8 weeks, and something just does not feel right then start asking questions. 

  • Look into alternatives.
  • Get more knowledge on what you are doing and why it may not work for you.
  • Listen to your body.
  • Consult a health professional.
  • Get outside your normal circle of influence and find out how others are getting healthy. 
  • Pick a new path and try it for 8 weeks.
  • See what happens.

Chances are it will only take a few months and you will start landing on the exact path your body was built for.


 

 

How many calories are in that?

I've always found it hard to get a true idea of what calorie amounts look like with various foods. I imagine I am not the only one. If I do not know how many calories the foods I am eating contain then how do I know I am eating enough to gain the massive muscles I strive for? 

I am super visual so I am a big fan of when someone can show me a picture to explain something. I found these two fantastic videos below put together by the guys over at Wise Geek. The first video below covers what 2000 calories looks like and the second video covers what 200 calories looks like. Also, here is a link to Wise Geek's page that contains more examples of different foods at 200 calories that are not included in their video. 

 

Why the Scale is Not Your Friend

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That is right, step away from the scale my friends.  I know that many of you start and finish your day with the ritual of weighing yourself on your "friendly scale"...

BUT

  • Truth #1: The scale only tells you what your whole body mass weighs with no consideration for the actual composition of your body mass. 
  • Truth #2: Muscle weighs more than fat.  
  • Truth #3: If you are reaching your goals which are to lose fat and gain muscle your weight may go up or stay the same while you look significantly better. 

Check out this example: 

This is Kristen, one of our dunklings, before and after her 30 day nutrition challenge: 

 

Weight 152.3 lbs - 23.6% Body Fat 35.9 lbs Fat Mass / 114.6 lbs Lean Mass

Weight 152.3 lbs - 23.6% Body Fat

35.9 lbs Fat Mass / 114.6 lbs Lean Mass

Weight 151.5 lbs - 20.7 % Body Fat 31.4 lbs Fat Mass / 119.9 lbs Lean Mass

Weight 151.5 lbs - 20.7 % Body Fat

31.4 lbs Fat Mass / 119.9 lbs Lean Mass

If Kristen only used her scale as a means to assess her progress she would have been right back into the fridge for the Ben & Jerry's after weighing herself. Even though

Kristen would have known she looked better in the mirror the scale would have only showed a 1 lb loss of weight.  Fortunately Kristen got dunked before and after her nutrition challenge and found out that her body fat percentage was lower and she had gained lean mass. Having her body composition tested was the most accurate and conclusive way for Kristen to validate her fitness and nutrition hard work. She walked away from her second dunk one very proud dunkling!

Your Next Steps:

  1. Throw away your scale.  
  2. Sign up here to have your body composition tested.