Yes, I Watch What I Eat. No, I Don’t Watch What YOU Eat

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As you all know by now I keep pretty tight reigns on my food.  I personally don’t like to eat a lot of crap and choose to eat a diet consisting of mainly organic veggies and lean proteins.  As you also may know, I don’t give a shit about what you eat.  Remember the whole “Not judging people” thing I suggested.

Lately, just about every time I go out to eat with a friend they make a comment about not wanting to eat what they really want to because they think I will judge them.  I’m going to dispel this myth right now.  This is generally a behavior that is being projected onto a healthy eater.  Maybe they really do feel like they shouldn’t be eating those foods but the fact of the matter is, it doesn’t even occur to me to judge people for their food.  I certainly don’t enjoy being judged for my food, which I most certainly am on a daily, meal-ly basis.  There tends to be a feeling that it is ok to comment on a healthy eaters food but not on an unhealthy eaters food.  More on that here.

There is one caveat to this statement though… If you constantly complain about being fat but still eat cheeseburgers for lunch every day, I will judge you.  But not for what you’re eating, for being a hypocrite.  I cannot get behind someone who dislikes something about themselves but refuses to change it.  There is a saying in the fitness world, “Complaining doesn’t burn and calories.”  If it did, I’d probably weight 10 pounds.  So here is a call to action.  If you are unhappy with your weight, do something about it.  Yes, dieting sucks.  Yes, working out is hard.  Yes, it takes time out of your day.  However, if you really look at the grand scheme of things its not as hard as you think.  Make small changes.  You don’t need to go on a 1200 calorie a day diet and workout 3 hours a day.  All you need to do is swap your fries for a salad with that cheeseburger, or maybe take off the top bun and hold the cheese.  Maybe you walk places that are less than half a mile away instead of driving.  Small changes CAN have big results.  Don’t get discouraged!

On the flip side, if you are overweight and you are happy about it congratulations!  You are winning.  The goal isn’t to be a certain weight, but to be happy with yourself, to feel beautiful, to ooze confidence, and to enjoy your life!

Here is an update on my Fitness Model training program:

I completed 13 weeks total of the 12 week program.  I had some major setbacks along the way.  I discovered that I have Hashimoto’s Disease.  Hashimoto’s is an auto immune disease that attacks your thyroid.  As you may know your thyroid controls a number of hormones and an imbalance can make it very hard to lose weight.  I definitely didn’t get the results I wanted, or was promised but I’m still proud of what I did.  I sizzled off 11 pounds of fat!  A lot of people said I didn’t have anything to lose but the fact of the matter is, I did… and still do.  Currently I have started Intermittent Fasting on a 16/8 schedule to try to jumpstart my fat loss again while I wait to be put on meds for my thyroid.  This means that I eat all my calories from 12pm-8pm and then fast from 8pm-12pm.  I have been training fasted in the mornings and have been able to do more than I have since the whole Meniere’s/Vertigo diagnosis.  I’m still waaaaaaaay behind where I was but I’m very please with my progress.

Comment and let me know how you’re training and what you’re eating, or tweet me @notmommaterial!

How Do You Do It?!?

I love to bake. I mean absolutely love it. It’s what I do when I’m stressed, or bored, or happy, or its a Tuesday! However as my faithful followers know, I don’t eat like that. I’m asked all the time how I’m able to make all these fattening and sugar laden foods and not eat any of it. For me its this one simple cliché:
Nothing tastes as good as healthy feels.
This may make me an enabler to the people who eat my baked goods but I truly believe that your health and fitness choices are up to you. I don’t need to police people, just like they don’t need to police me. So when I have a dinner party I don’t skimp on butter and sugar. When its someone’s birthday I make cakes and cupcakes and pies… but I never eat them. Depending on my fitness goals at that point I don’t even taste them. I always make two dinners for my dinner parties, one for me and one for my guests. And I’m totally ok with that.
If you go long enough eating healthy and cutting sugar out of your diet you truly don’t want it. When I do indulge I feel terrible. My body doesn’t want refined carbs and sugar. Mostly it wants healthy fats and protein, so that’s what I give it. It all comes down to will power and wanting something more than that moment of chewing will give you.
Often people tell me “You don’t understand, I’m an emotional eater.” or “I was raised eating a certain way.” In which I reply. “No. YOU don’t understand.” I was raised a certain way too. We all were.  My mom is the best baker ever and we always had chocolate chip cookies and vanilla frosting in the house. I ate only blueberry pancakes for almost a year. I grew up eating corn and mashed potatoes and friend chicken. I was taught to emotionally eat. Food was our reward for every good thing we did. It was also our comfort, our friend. But guess what, I’m an adult now. I can no longer use my childhood as a crutch for poor choices. Instead I have decided to make my own choices based on what’s best for me now. I used to be a size 16 (so, I get it) and I wasn’t happy so I changed it. I changed it by reconditioning myself to see food as fuel and not as a reward. Did it suck?  Of course it did.  Was it easy?  Hell no!  That’s why now that I’m almost done with the hardest diet and exercise (the training is only hard because of my Meniere’s. If this was 2 years ago it would have been really easy) program I’ve ever done, I have been rewarding myself with things that can’t be eaten. And it feels just as good, or even better. Because my eyelash extensions last 3 weeks but a cupcake is gone in seconds. Not that there is anything wrong with rewarding yourself with food. I just feel, for me, it leads to even more bad choices.
How do you reward yourselves for a job well done?
For those of you who are wondering how my program is going, its been rough. I’m down 8 pounds of pure fat. I had a bit of a set back and plateaued a bit so my trainer ordered me to take a few days of rest, which I’m not really happy about, but I feel better already. I need to learn to listen to my body more. So I’m basically taking a week off from carb cycling and going back to just a balanced eating program and picking up the carb cycling next week. Then I will have only one month left!!!

Let me know what your up to and follow me on twitter @notmommaterial

Fad Diets? Really People it’s 2014

My Facebook feed is full of people who are starting fad diets this year.  It really makes me wonder what these people are thinking.  Time and time again we’ve learned that fads don’t last.  If they did we’d still be wearing Zubas.  So what makes you think that these lose weight quick schemes are going to work?

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The newest fad is Paleo.  The basis of this diet, or lifestyle really, is that you eat like cavemen basically.  My problem with this is that you cut out entire food groups.  There isn’t much room for grains or fruit and to me that’s never good. I don’t believe in deprivation.  Keeping certain things out of your diet and deeming them “bad” foods causes you to over eat them in the long run.  Always allow yourself a treat each week to reset the mechanism as it were.  Although I do agree with some of the principles of the diet, it’s not something I’m going to adopt any time soon.
The other one I’ve been seeing is the 5:2 Diet.  This diet requires you to eat normally five days a week and restrict your calories to 500 for two non-consecutive days.  Although it is touted as a form of intermittent fasting (which I totally agree with and do from time to time) I can’t even begin to tell you how irritated this makes me.  I’m all for doing a fast day here or there but this is ridiculous.  When you severely restrict your calories your body flips out and goes into starvation mode.  It doesn’t know when its going to get nutrients again so it stores everything as fat.  All it really takes to lose weight is to eat less and move more every day, not just two days a week.

The big thing here in LA is Juice Cleansing.  It’s just what it sounds like.  You subsist merely on fruit and vegetable juices, usually from a juice bar and usually costing close to the gross income of a family of four.  My personal problem with juicing, and I’ve done my share of them, is that the fiber and much of the protein is removed from the plant.  In turn you are getting purely vitamins and minerals, which is totes awesome, but that’s not all you need to live.  I drink a green smoothie nearly every day for a shot of liquid nutrition.  This way my body is able to utilize everything that the veggies and fruit has to offer.  And that’s the way to go.

Ummm, Master Cleanse, am I right?  All you do is drink a disgusting concoction of water, cayenne pepper, lemon juice and maple syrup.  Oh and every morning you get up and drink massive quantities of salt water to flush out your colon.  Sure you’ll lose weight but as soon as you look at a bagel you’ll gain twice as much back.  But if you’re into never leaving the bathroom, go for it.

For me, it’s all about balance.  If you eat a huge meal for breakfast maybe you don’t eat as much for lunch.  Just don’t be an ass who eats huge meals every meal of every day and then complains about being fat.  Moderation is the key to healthy living.  Bethany Frankel suggests that you think of your diet as a bank account. If you spend a lot for lunch spend less for dinner. It’s that simple.
The other trap people fall into is looking for a magic weight loss pill. Don’t you think if there were a magic pill everyone would be skinny?? It just doesn’t work that way.

As a society we’ve become so obsessed with losing weight that we over look being healthy.  If you focus on a diet rich in protein and healthy fats and cram in as many fresh vegetables and fruits as humanly possible while not overdoing carbs, you will feel better and in turn lose weight.  Good luck!

Oh, You Joined My Gym? Wonderful

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It’s that time of year again.  The time of year that unfit people resolve to get fit.  As a former unfitty, I think that is wonderful.  However, as a person who prioritizes fitness everyday of my life its super annoying when the resolutioners invade the gym.  The gym I frequent is already extremely busy but from January 1st to about March 1st it’s absolutely insane.  You can’t get on a machine to save your life because some schmuck is parked on the pec deck updating their Facebook status to say they’re at the gym.  Want to do more than 30 minutes of cardio?  Forget about it.  There will be a line of people waiting for that treadmill so they can walk on it at a brisk 2.5 pace.
I often wonder why people feel they need a new year to start getting healthy.  I can only imagine that it is a thinly veiled excuse to get their Twitter followers to think they actually care about something other than Doctor Who reruns and Flamin’ Hot Cheetos.  Well, I don’t buy it.  Start making health a priority every day, not when the calendar deems it appropriate.
Here are a few easy ways to make fitness and health an everyday resolution and how to stick with it.

  • If you live within 1 mile of a gym, any gym, join that one and walk to it.  Don’t drive to the gym to walk on the treadmill.
  • Every time you go to a store park as far away as possible.
  • Never take the elevator.  Don’t even look at an escalator.  I mean how lazy are you?!?
  • Make yourself what I call a “hafta” station.  This means while you’re at work or at home designate a spot where every time you walk by you hafta do push-ups or sit ups.  Or what ever you feel helps you the most.  Bonus points if you choose burpees, you’re really nailing it!
  • Make the most of your time at the gym.  Put your phone down and work.  Make giant circuits for yourself and move from 1 exercise to the next so you’re not sitting on a machine on your phone.
  • Get up and workout first thing in the morning.  The less time you have to make excuses not to go to the gym the better.  Sleep in your sports bra if you have to, I do.
  • Choose to reward yourself with luxuries like massages or a new watch when you reach your goal, not with food.  No one ever died from not eating a pizza.  You won’t either.

Let me know what your goals are for the year and how you plan on reaching them, I love to hear from you!  For me, I’m not making any resolutions this year.  Instead I’m making daily promises to myself.  Every day I’m going to be a better person than the day before.  Happy New Year!

What Kind of A Hole Starts a Diet in December?

This kind of A hole!!

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After having to take A LOT of time off from my gym routine this year and not being able to workout as hard as I used to, I gained some weight.  I was very unhappy and decided to find an online trainer who focused on body transformations.  I found a program that is geared more towards what I call “scientific eating” than strenuous workouts.  Now, I’m not a huge proponent of diets but it’s really the only way someone with vertigo can drastically change their bodies.

So why on Earth would anyone choose a strict diet plan (with NO treats!) on December 1st?  Simple.  Will power.  I am an all or nothing person so if I commit to something I am going to see it through to the end 100%.  I’ve gotten a lot of flack from people already for bringing my own food to the out-of-town wedding I was in, and for eating grilled chicken and salad on Christmas.  I did not have 1 cookie, or piece cake, or chocolate, or piece of cheese, or any of that other crap that we all over eat around the Holidays.  And you Know what?  I’m still alive.  I didn’t die because I couldn’t eat cookies.  I feel better than I ever have around the Holidays and I know that I made a commitment to health and to myself to see it through.  No amount of chewing and swallowing is going to make me feel better.  Too often people wait to start a diet or workout routine until after the holidays.  Unfortunately there is always another holiday looming.  After Christmas is New Year’s and then Valentine’s Day and then St. Patrick’s Day and Easter.  The next thing you know you are waiting till after Flag Day.  Get with it people and start today!  Here’s how I’m doing it and you can too.

The crux of this diet is focusing on your macronutrients for the first 6 weeks and then carb cycling for the last 6.  For those of you who don’t know, macronutrients consist of fat, carbs and protein.  Finding the right percentage of these macros will lead to your highest amount of fat loss while still preserving your lean muscle mass.  Everyone is different.  In order to find your most optimum ratio you should simply experiment.  Start off eating 40% of your calories from protein, 50% from carbs, and 10% from fat.  Do this for a couple of weeks and assess your progress.  If you are not meeting your goal adjust your ratio to add more protein and fat and less carbs and keep this up until you hit your goal.  When you are consistently losing 1 to 2 pounds  a week, depending on how much you need to lose, you will be at your magic ratio.

Carb cycling is something traditionally used in figure and bodybuilding competition prep.  It means cycling through high, medium, and low carb days to constantly keep your body guessing.  This is a bit harder to figure out on your own.  Here is an article on basic carb cycling and how to use it.

I hope some of you will be inspired to start today.  At the very least start after the 1st.  Make 2014 a year of healthy living, even if it’s just small changes.  Every journey begins with once little step.  Good luck!

The Best Part of Halloween!

A few days ago my husband and I carved pumpkins. As a kid, my mom and I always carved pumpkins together and it’s one of my favorite fall activities. So to really get in the mood I made this Pumpkin Pie I swapped out a few ingredients. Her recipe calls for brown rice and maple syrups, which are both sweeteners I stay away from. I used Raw coconut nectar instead which has a much lower glycemic index. She also uses quite a bit of sugar which I prefer not to eat and since I didn’t have any coconut sugar, my sweetener of choice, I used Stevia. The pie turned out absolutely delicious.
As, you know I like to use every part of the vegetable so I scooped out all the seeds and roasted them.
Here’s my favorite method:
Preheat oven to 350
Clean and dry seeds
Mix 2 tbsp of low sodium tamari and as much cayenne pepper as you can handle.
Place on baking sheet, coat with mixture and roast for 10 minutes.
Stir and roast for another 10 minutes and then eat them all in one sitting.

Gym Etiquette Apparently No One Knows

KipWe’ve all heard the standard gym etiquette rules to live by like re-rack your weights, don’t drop them, and don’t curl in the squat rack.  But there are a whole different set of rules that no one seems to abide by at the gym.  I experience each and every one of these each and every time I go to the gym.

So here’s are the secrets no one is telling you:

Cardio Machines

  • If your gym has some cardio machines with TVs and some without please only use the ones with the TVs if you are, in fact, going to be watching TV.  These are not for reading your book, or screenplay (I live in LA after all).  That, my friends, is why they have machines with NO TVs!
  • If I’m working out on a machine and you come up and hop on the one next to me even though there are 50 other machines available, I will give you a dirty look and mumble “Are you kidding me?” under my breath.
  • Don’t talk on the phone.  Just don’t.  Also if you can talk on the phone during your cardio, you are doing it wrong.
  • Don’t be that guy or girl who holds their body up with their hands whilst pedaling, running, or climbing with your legs super fast.  Again, you’re doing it wrong and you look ridiculous.
  • If you are wearing a sauna suit, please don’t go near any other humans.  Or, better yet, don’t wear a sauna suit.
  • If you have to talk to someone on the treadmill next to me, please don’t stand in the 6 inches between machines.  Like this (actual photo from my personal cardio time)image

Weight Room

  • If you are the type of person that lugs the weights all the way other to the other side of the gym, please also be the person that, at the very least, lugs them back to the general area from which they came.  End of story.
  • We all understand that you are lifting really heavy weights Mr. Olympia, but no one wants to hear you yell every time you move.
  • If I’m on a bench and you choose to workout next to me, please respect my personal space bubble and remember that it extends past the bench.  Don’t be this guy who’s ass was so close to my feet I couldn’t put them down to sit up.  I had to roll over on my side.  Meanwhile, no one else was any were near me.

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  • Mirrors are for checking your form.  No flexing, gawking at yourself, or taking selfies.  Other acceptable uses of mirrors would be checking out a hot guy or girl behind you (in a discreet and non-creepy way) or trying to catch an Awkward Gym Moment
  • No one, and I mean no one, wants to hear you singing Work Bitch at the top of your lungs.  Keep it in your head people.

Locker Room

  • Do not ever sit your bare ass on anything… ever!
  • Ladies, brush your hair before you get into the shower so you leave less hair in the drain.  No one wants to see that.
  • Naked with a leg up on anything is never a good look.
  • Never play music on your phone without your headphones plugged in.  You may think that everyone wants to hear Blurred Lines for the 4,000th time, but we don’t.  Keep it to yourself.
  • Put your dirty, nasty, used towels in the bin.  Not on the floor.
  • If your body hair grooming activities belong in the 70′s please cover yourself up.  You know what, just everyone cover up.  You are not in your own home, you do not need to flaunt your business every where.

In summation, don’t be an ass who only thinks of themselves at the gym.  Its hard enough to get motivated to go to the gym regularly with out a bunch of rude, jerk holes making it miserable.  If any of these things happen to you please snap a picture and leave a comment below.  I love seeing the weird things people do at the gym.  Or tweet me  twitter.com/notmommaterial.

I want to thank you all for the tremendous support you have given me and my blog.  My last post was a record breaker for me and I’m now huge in Switzerland.  I always love to hear what you’re thinking, so leave a comment about anything.  If you have any topics you’d like me to write about I’d be more than happy to oblige.

If you’d like to hear what I sound like and how funny and smart my friends are, I am a co-host on a hilarious and smart podcast called Weekly Dictator.  Listen to it at the gym.  That’s what I did before I was on it… because now it would just be weird.

Thin Shaming is a Real Thing and It’s Just as Bad as Fat Shaming

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In our society “fat” is a nasty four letter word, but for some reason skinny or thin is perfectly acceptable.

Recently, I saw a picture of celebrity stylist Rachel Zoe, known for being extremely thin, and in the comments under a beautiful picture of her and Anne Hathaway were hundreds of comments from people thin shaming them.  They accused them both of  being anorexic and unhealthy.

Meanwhile, Zoe has given birth to a beautiful, and healthy son and is currently pregnant.  Why isn’t it okay to just be thin?  And why do people think that these types of comments are ok but calling Adele or Rebel Wilson fat is taboo?  The fact of the matter is, it’s the exact same thing.  As women, we need to support one another for being beautiful the way we are, not shaming each other into thinking we aren’t good enough.

I’ve mentioned before that we shouldn’t listen to people who don’t know what they are talking about.  Let’s all agree to just appreciate one another and be supportive of what ever we choose to do.  I’m met with a lot of ridiculous accusations of not eating enough or over-training.  Once while I was in the throes of a vegan raw detox, in the middle of a salad made of broccoli, avocado, and mango… only, an overweight friend of mine said to me “You need to eat real food”.  I was flabbergasted at this statement.  This person was eating a greasy fast food cheeseburger at the time.  When did that become real food?  I guess I didn’t get the memo.  What would it have looked like if I said “How can you eat that frankenfood”? Just about any time I go out to eat with someone who isn’t a health nut like me, they make comments about what I order, or the fact that I don’t choose to drink alcohol, or that I can’t always make time for hanging out with friends because with work and my husband and dogs and working out, I don’t always have time.  When these people order pancakes and beer and sit around watching TV all day I say nothing.  I would never say to them what I’m thinking and the fact is, what I am doing is healthy for me.  And I’m sure what they are doing is healthy for them.  Who am I to judge?

Which brings me back to my whole philosophy on health and fitness.  Health and fitness are like religion and politics…  They shouldn’t be spoken about in mixed company.  All of these things are very personal and they make people crazy.  That’s why I choose to talk to my fit friends about fitness and what type of macrobiotic dinner I’m having and my friends who aren’t into it don’t get inundated with my personal journey.  All I ask in return is that they do the same.  So, the next time your friend says they can’t hang out with you because they need to get their workout in, please be supportive and say “Good for you, see you tomorrow”, instead of “God, you’re always at the gym, you never have time to hang out”.  Just be supportive of people is what it really comes down to.  Be kind, be giving, don’t be selfish, and BE SUPPORTIVE!  Oh and follow me on twitter @notmommaterial