Cheat Meals are Bullshit

Donut Curve

Cheat meals are a weird concept “I’m going to eat clean all week and then reward myself for eating clean by eating a large amount of food”. I get not wanting to deprive yourself of food you enjoy, but what if instead of planning out a binge fest you actually ate food when you truly wanted it and not used it as a reward?

Instead of rewarding yourself with food, try out the 80/20 rule, 80% of the time you eat whole foods and 20% of the time you maybe get a little off track and eat a fucking donut or some other food that truly brings you joy. It’s important to find balance in your eating and not reward yourself with food. I find the 80/20 rule to be less stressful and a hell of a lot more enjoyable. Learn how to make healthy decisions as you go throughout life. Learn how to say no to certain foods when you really just don’t want them or they just aren’t worth it. Making healthy decisions will help you to create positive habits and help you maintain a healthy lifestyle long term. Also, a bit of a side note but I try not to refer to foods as good and bad because when you eat a food that you’ve labelled as bad it makes you feel negative after eating it. Eating should not make you feel horrible about yourself, remember that.

I used to plan my life around my weekly cheat meal, I would stress all week trying to decide what I should eat because I literally wanted to eat everything. I would always go way over board on this “cheat” and wind up feeling ill and horrible about myself. Looking back I think there were very few times that I actually enjoyed the cheat meal itself. I’m not judging anyone who chooses to participate in cheat meals, I just truly believe that we shouldn’t be using food as a reward.

My Favourite Forms of Cardio

If you spend hours on the elliptical then I’m sorry but you’re doing it wrong, unless you have bad knees or you’re training to be a gazelle. When I first started at the gym I always went on the elliptical because well, it was easy. Now I pretty much despise any cardio that involves a machine (although I use treadmills in the winter because I live in Canada and well snow).

Here are a few of my favourite forms of cardio (this doesn’t mean I love cardio, I still hate it):

  1. Skipping – this shit will get your heart rate up in a hurry. Try skipping in intervals and then when you get really good at it try double unders.
  2. Burpees – pretty much the worst exercise known to man but burpees are effective. Use burpees as a finisher to fully destroy you after a workout.
  3. Jump Squats – these will help perk up your butt and that’s pretty much all the reason I need to do them. Add jump squats into your warm up and your body will be warm in no time.
  4. Running – get outside and run like hell (unless there’s snow on the ground).
  5. Rowing – yes it’s a machine but it’s f*cking hard. Add rowing into your normal gym routine, you’ll hate it so much you’ll love it

Add one (or more) of these moves to your regular routine and you’ll feel your heart rate increase and the sweat pour out of your body.

 

Let’s Talk About Carbs

Whenever I hear someone say “carbs are bad for you” I want to punch them. I’m not a violent person but when it comes to people speaking ill of carbohydrates I go full Terminator. Some people act like carbs are the devil and I honestly can’t handle it. Carbs are not bad, carbs will not murder your family so take a seat. If you eat pasta at every meal, then yeah you’re probably not going to lose weight. If you eat the right kind of carbs you can still lose weight and be happy because carbs = happiness. I’ll give you an example, a few months ago I did a whole30 reset and I ate potatoes (sweet and regular) pretty much everyday and I still lost 14 lbs. I was able to lose weight because I was eating only whole foods and exercising regularly, the potatoes I ate gave me the energy I needed to get through a day of work and to get through a workout.

When choosing what carbs to eat look for whole grain or whole food alternative, if it comes from nature, chances are it’s good for you, unless it’s poisonous berries, don’t eat those. Try and eat carbs in as close to their natural state as possible, simply put potato chips are not a healthy choice.

Good Carbs: starchy vegetables, non-starchy vegetables, fruits,  greens.

Bad Carbs: soda, sugary cereals, white pasta, highly processed carbs etc.

There are some popular “diets” that promote low carb plans, but they’re just a quick fix, neglecting carbs in the long term is honestly not sustainable #sorrynotsorry. Some long term affects of low carb diets include weight gain, kidney problems, bowel problems, high cholesterol and the list goes on.

Reasons you should put some carbs in your mouth:

  1. Carbs fill you up – the body digests carbs at a slower rate then protein or fat, which leaves you feeling fuller longer.
  2. Increase Athletic Performance – Wanna be better? faster? stronger? eat some f*cking carbs. The body breaks down sugars in carbohydrates to fuel the body, it’s that simple.
  3. More Food Freedom – you can eat a wider variety of foods and don’t have to feel limited.
  4. Brain Health – people who eat carbs tend to have better memories than those who don’t.
  5. Heart Health – people who eat carbs tend to have lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and higher HDL (good) cholesterol.

Don’t eat a certain way because it’s trendy, eat in moderation, watch your portion sizes and stop hating on carbs.

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Source: Giphy

How to spot a gym douche

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Disclaimer: I’m blonde and blunt, this post may offend you if you identify as a douche.

According to urban dictionary the word douche is “a word to describe an individual who has shown themself to be very brainless in one way or another, thus comparing them to the cleansing product for vaginas.” I personally use the word douche to describe certain people (male or female) at the gym who exhibit any of the following behaviours:

  1. No regards for the people around them. This person usually takes up a lot of machines all at once or refuses to clean up after themselves, they probably also probably don’t wash their hands after they use the bathroom.
  2. Mocks other gym goers. PSA everyone at the gym is working on themselves, I don’t care what size they are, do not make fun of anyone at the gym, at least they’re trying. In my opinion this kind of behaviour makes you the biggest douche of all.
  3. Moans excessively. Not every rep deserves a loud grunt or moan, most of the people that grunt consistently aren’t actually lifting intensely. We’re not in the wild, you’re mating call is not needed.
  4. Hits on everything that moves. There’s always that one guy at the gym who feels the need to hit on every girl. I get that the gym is a great place to find a significant other but stop hitting on everyone, girls talk and we know you’ve hit on all of us. Also don’t interrupt a workout to hit on someone, wait until they’re on a rest or just wait until they’re done working out, patience is key young grasshopper.
  5. You can smell them from a mile away. Usually they don’t smell like body odour, they just smell like they bathed in their cologne/perfume for a week straight. Deodorant is appreciated, excessive body spray is not.
  6. Refuses to work legs, probably trains chest every day that ends in ‘y’. This point is pretty self explanatory.
  7. Thinks that they’re better than everyone else. These people often brag about how great of shape they’re in, if you have to brag about it, you’re probably over compensating for something.

In closing, just don’t be a douche folks.

 

Thoughts While Watching Fittest on Earth: A Decade of Fitness

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Image via Google Images

 

I’m a little late to the party but Fittest on Earth: A Decade of Fitness (aka the GREATEST documentary of all time) just came onto Netflix and MY LIFE HAS BEEN CHANGED. I have been watching the Crossfit games for years and my god I love any and all documentaries about it. When the games come on I live stream it wherever I am, I have even taken time off work to watch the games. I have watched Fittest on Earth over 20 times, and I am now onto my third time watching  Fittest on Earth: A Decade of Fitness (I am currently watching it because I LOVE IT).

Here are my thoughts while watching the greatest documentary of all time, seriously someone give them an oscar.

  1. Dave Castro is so extra, I love it.
  2. Wow, I’m shit at everything.
  3. Sara Sigmundsdottir is my Spirit Animal.
  4. I hope no one dies.
  5. Watching the guys work out is better than both Magic Mike movies combined.
  6. I wish I was Icelandic.
  7. I need to workout like ASAP.
  8. I want to hang out with all of these athletes.
  9. Katrin’s eyebrows are everything.
  10. My motivation is through the roof right now.

The 2017 Crossfit Games are in a couple weeks and I AM SO EXCITED. I’m hoping Sara Sigmundsdottir wins for the women this year, who are you cheering for?

How to start: Working Out

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If your new to living a healthy lifestyle, working out can seem really intimidating. I remember the first time I set foot in the gym, I had no idea what anything was or what I should be doing. Everyone else seemed to be so experienced and intimidating, I didn’t make eye contact with anyone at the gym for the first year that I worked out. I was always worried that I was doing an exercise wrong and people were laughing at me from afar, we’ve all been there and we’ve all felt like this, it’s normal. I always tell first time gym goers that most people are too focused on themselves to notice others unless you are a loud grunter or screamer then you will be noticed. It’s not hard to start working out it’s just intimidating for most people. I have created a list of tips for first time gym goers to help you get into the gym or off of the couch.

  1. Write Down Your Goals – Identifying your goals is the most important part of living a healthier lifestyle, this will help you find your why and your motivation to get shit done. When writing down your goals make sure to rate the importance of these goals to you on a scale of 1 – 10, 10 being extremely important. Rating your goals creates a bigger emotional attachment and gives you a lot of motivation. If you’ve ever had a consultation with a trainer you have most likely been through this type of goal setting.
  2. Just Start – You’ve already made the conscious decision to change or try something new so just do it. Walk into your local gym, contact a trainer, break out those home workout videos, get it done and crush those goals.
  3. Seek Professional Help – Like I said before, working out can be intimidating for the first time, no one wants to feel like they’re doing something wrong and no one wants to get hurt. I recommend seeking out some professional help. Most gyms will offer a complimentary session with a trainer when you sign up, use this as a time to ask questions and get your form critiqued.
  4. Pace Yourself – We all get excited when we start something new or want to crush some goals, it is super important not to go crazy within your first week or month. I’ve seen a lot of new gym members wear themselves out within the first month, pace yourself, ease into it and don’t try and find your 1 rep max within the first week of working out. Also don’t buy a shit ton of supplements as soon as you join the gym like no just no.

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5. Schedule Out Your Workout Time – In my experience if you don’t schedule out your workouts then they probably won’t happen #truthbomb. Mark it on your calendar, tell Siri to remind you do what you gotta do to get it done. Don’t like schedules? Too bad, schedule it.

6. Don’t Reward a Workout With Food – Most people who start working out make the common mistake of thinking that because they workout they can have all the food. I used to think that because I worked out I could eat cake.. every night. Don’t deprive yourself but also don’t eat cake every night if you want to lose weight.

I hate running so I’m going to learn to run

I don’t think there is anything in this world that I hate more than running. When I was a kid I hated track and field day because you show up to school one day and you’re expected to run for like 800 metres. No thank you. The night before track and field day I would try and come up with ways to get out of it, like breaking my own leg. I don’t think that’s too dramatic or anything. I’m also asthmatic so running is a bitch for me, a bitch that I’ve avoided like the plague.

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A couple of weeks ago I walked into my regular Crossfit class and written under WOD on the board was a 400 metre run. No, just no. I felt like I was in elementary school again, only this time I didn’t have my inhaler. The run was awful, I hated every minute of it. I was embarrassed by my horrible running skills, I literally have the lung capacity of a mouse. I hate being bad at things so I am determined to improve this skill ASAP. I know I won’t be able to run long distances over night but I’ve come up with a plan. Repeat the weekly workout 3-5 times a week.

 

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Feel free to join me for 8 weeks of literal hell, I’m starting Monday. Hopefully in 8 weeks I will be significantly better at running.

How to Overcome a Protein Bar Addiction

Step 1: Admit you have a problem

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Source: Giphy
  • Do you eat protein bars frequently or in replacement of meals?
  • Do you experience irritability or mood swings when you don’t have a protein bar?

 

Step 2: Seek support

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  • There are no registered support groups for this addiction.
  • Reach out to a family member or friend.
  • Always post to social media when you’re making a life change, if it’s not on social media, it probably didn’t happen.

 

Step 3: Rid your house, car and gym bag of all protein bar remains

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  • Get rid of all temptation and by get rid I mean throw out, DO NOT CONSUME.
  • Throw out any left over wrappers, you may be tempted to huff the wrappers.

Step 4: Cold Turkey

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  • Don’t try to slowly ween yourself off, cut it out completely. It’s for the best, I swear.

 

Step 5: Create an action plan

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  • This may include avoiding certain sections of the grocery store or never leaving your house again, find something that works for you and stick with it.

Step 6: Do not go on Pinterest

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Source: Giphy
  • This might possibly be the hardest step, you think it’s fine to just look up some DIY house decor and next thing you know you’ve pinned 10 protein bar recipes.

Step 7: Unfriend anyone who offers you a protein bar

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  • Promptly slap that protein bar out of their hand.
  • You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life, besides didn’t they see your post on facebook about not eating protein bars? How rude.

Step 8: Preparing for cravings

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  • It’s bound to happen at one point or another, when the craving hits simply stop whatever you are doing, get down on the floor, and curl up into the fetal position.

 

Thoughts I’ve had While Doing CrossFit

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Image via scrubbing.in

I recently started attending a beginner CrossFit bootcamp. I’m now able to understand what all the hype is about. The best part of walking into a CrossFit class is that you don’t have to think about a workout, you just walk in and get your ass handed to you, it I walk into every class with excitement and a little fear. Despite how tough a workout may be, and how much I may hate in the moment, I can’t wait to do it again as soon as the workout is over. I’ve made a list of my most common thoughts (sometimes I say them out loud) during a WOD.

1. “AMRAP 8 min, so easy” – By minute 4 *wheezing* “Is it over yet!!?”

2. “I hope this makes my butt bigger” – every exercise.

3. “F*ck burpees”

4. “Maybe I’ll just play dead during this WOD”

5. “I love wall balls”

6. “F*ck wall balls”

7. “Why do I pay to be tortured like this?”

8. “Where’s my inhaler?”

9. ” I wonder if Beyoncé does Crossfit”

10. “I hope I have abs after this”

 

 

Diaries of a Past Chubby Child: Easter

Squares Are For Squares

For most people Christmas is the worst time of year for eating junk and hating yourself. For me that holiday is Easter, the holiday literally revolves around chocolate (well it actually revolves around Jesus but that’s a discussion for another time). Easter used to be the time of year that everyone stocked up on mini eggs for the year and rationed them until the next time mini eggs would come out of hibernation and wreak havoc on our waistlines. Mini eggs are just so delicious and adorably cute and I just want 500 of them. Back when I was in College Easter coincided with final exams, I’m a stress eater so having a plethora of chocolate available around at an extremely stressful time was a recipe for disaster. Looking back now I am shocked at my lack of self control, I would eat anything and everything. My body pretty much ran on sugar in college and especially during exams and I would crash hard if I didn’t have any.

I grew up in a town that is famous for it’s chocolate and it’s theatre but chocolate is what matters most to me because I will always be a chubby kid at heart. I was never given chalky wal mart Easter bunnies. If you live in Stratford you most likely were given premium chocolate hand crafted Easter bunnies. You haven’t truly eaten chocolate until you’ve had some from Rheo Thompsons or Chocolate Barr’s. When I was a child I probably consumed 20 times the recommended amount of sugar Easter morning. My parent’s would always try and get us to ration out our chocolate but I would eat pretty much all of it in one sitting because even at the age of 8, I had no self control when it came to food.

I am a firm believer in the “treat yo self” motto, I don’t do it everyday because I would be back up to 250lbs but I do believe that if you truly want something and it’s been on your mind for a while, you should have it.  It’s challenging to eat a junk food in moderation, as a person who struggled with weight my whole life, I sometimes find it challenging to not slip back into old habits. The key to not slipping back into old and harmful habits is to constantly be thinking about what your goals are and how you’re going to get there. Not going to lie, I’ll be consuming some chocolate this weekend but I’m going to get right back on track after. Life is about balance, not about being perfect. One thing I learned during my fitness journey is that beating yourself up after eating something “bad” won’t get you anywhere, stay positive, stay calm, and get back to crushing your goals.

Make good Choices!

-B