Thursday, September 17, 2015

Paleo Diet: It really isn't for everyone

I've been asked about the benefits of the Paleo diet lately and whether or not it promotes weight loss. The general answer would be yes, but there are far cheaper, easier, tastier and less confusing ways to achieve that weight loss. I've researched the diet and all that it entails pretty extensively, and am still confused as to why I can't eat grapefruit, grains, or dairy (amongst tons of other things that are considered healthy foods).

I get the gist: eat like a caveman and lose weight. Okay….but think about how restrictive that is when you want to go out with your friends. What sauce is on that chicken? Oh, you want a potato with your steak? Sorry! And is that steak grass-fed? Are you prepared to ask all of these ridiculous and obsessive-sounding questions? Or, will you just not go out and instead stay home to ensure you stick to your "diet?" Alcohol is also absolutely a no-go when it comes to being Paleo (obviously cavemen didn't crack open a cold bud light every night, but this lack of moderation makes socializing pretty difficult if your friends are accustomed to going out for drinks on the weekends), so you end up being that crazy awkward friend who no one wants to invite because you're on the newest diet fad. Been there, done that.

My advice is to eat healthy and well-balanced meals that incorporate the "healthy" fresh foods you enjoy! Doesn't that sound so much better and more maintainable in the long run? And can we mention how much CHEAPER that would be?! Grass-fed meat? I'm sorry, but I'm gonna go ahead and keep purchasing my value packs of chicken, thanks. Also, keep in mind that being "healthy" is a full body/mind thing. If you restrict yourself too much, it always backfires. Think about maintaining a healthy quality of life that still allows you to reach your goals, rather than secluding yourself and revolving your life around you dietary restrictions.

If you ever have any questions or want advice, feel free to reach out to me and I would love to help! I hope this provided some insight into diet fads, especially going Paleo. Here are some links for more info in case you want a list of the allowed/banned foods.

Food list:
http://ultimatepaleoguide.com/paleo-diet-food-list/

Overview of diet:
http://paleoleap.com/paleo-101/

Discussing misconceptions:
http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20786451_3,00.html




Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Post-Workout "Peanut Butter" Protein Shake

Being busy definitely makes getting in all those meals a bit challenging, but creating yummy smoothies to keep me going throughout the day has been a life-saver! 

I added instant coffee to this one to give me a much-needed energy boost after my workout! It's also very nutrient balanced, which is exactly what you want to focus on after a hard-core gym session! You really want to focus on replenishing those carbs that were used up to fuel the workout and then provide protein to begin aiding in muscle recovery. There's also some fat in there from the pb2, but feel free to add in a tbs or 2 of peanut butter to increase the fats and give it more of a fulfilling consistency.
Macros: 291cal, 6.6g fats,  28.4 carbs, 35.4 protein 


Ingredients:

-1 scoop peanut butter protein (I used slap nutrition)
-2c baby spinach
-1/2 frozen banana
-2tbs pb2
-1 packet instant coffee
-1/2tbs cinnamon
-1.5c unsweetened almond milk
-stevia to taste

Directions: 

-blend together 
-enjoy!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Mass Blast Power Meet 2015

Hey peeps!!

These past two weeks have been CRAZY hectic, but such a fulfilling couple of weeks!! First, my powerlifting meet…I know I didn't talk about my anxiety leading up to the meet all that much, but boy was I nervous! I had been having horrible sciatic pain in the few weeks leading up to the meet and it was preventing me from lifting to my full potential. Thankfully one of my amazing Healthworks coworkers suggested acupuncture to relieve the pain. It actually worked in alleviating my hip and foot pain (I may have another stress fracture, but I am just gonna pretend that isn't happening)!

My meet was Sunday, August 23 in Lakeville, MA. I had been training toward this meet ever since my last bodybuilding show in May. I have always loved lifting heavy and dreaded the high rep hypertrophy training that went along with bodybuilding; and don't even get me started on the diet differences…

Anyway, I didn't know exactly what to expect going into my first meet, but I had been training with Pat Connolly (best trainer in Boston by far) and Alexander Omand (pro powerlifter who hosted the meet) to make sure I was able to take advantage of my full lifting potential. Needless to say, their help and coaching paid off because I beat the current New England record holder in both bench press and deadlift! I was beyond humbled and ecstatic to have hit both my personal PRs for that meet, and cannot wait to see where I get to for my next one on November 21st (Gate City Gauntlet)!! That meet will be a "full power" meet, so I'll be performing the back squat in addition to my bench press and deadlift. At the Mass Blast, I weighed in at 110.5 and benched 110 and deadlifted 225.

In addition to winning the most badass skull trophy I also met some of the most driven and dedicated people I've ever met. The powerlifting environment was unlike anything I had ever experienced and I'm definitely addicted. I plan to meet up with some of the friends I made for training sessions/pancake binges between now and the next meet, but I can already tell these are going to be some of my life-long friends. Everyone who came out that day genuinely wanted to see each individual lifter succeed. There was no tension or jealously amongst the lifters, and that was such an eye-opening realization when I compared this experience to my bodybuilding shows. I'm certainly not saying I won't do another physique show, but my passion absolutely lies with lifting all the heavy things!!

For my friends who came out to support me, I absolutely cannot thank you enough! Having that support system means more to me than words can describe.


 I was skeptical too, but I was desperate need of some immediate pain relief and it seriously saved my life! "Acupuncture for Everyone" did such a phenomenal job and made it a priority to get me in 3 times the week of my meet. I went in almost entirely pain free!



 Oh this old thing?? Just kidding. My ahhhh-mazing sponsor DerbySkinz does it again!! Just wait until you see the incredible singlets they've sent me for my upcoming meet in Novemeber. I may have to change in between lifts to be able to wear them all! :)

 We crushed some BOOOOMMMBBB breakfast in between bench press and deadlifting!! Those pumpkin pancakes though…'Tis the season right? Well…close enough!
 Our behind-the-scenes bestie picture! They stuck with me through all of it, and even helped pump me up in the warm-up room before I went out on the platform!

 This lady crushed her deadlift and gave me a whole new respect for the dedicated training it takes to get to this level. I only hope that I can be this strong and badass at 60!
 These are my people, and I wouldn't change any of them for the world :) #wereweirdandwelikeit