Recipe: Quinoa & feta with roasted vegetables (Gluten free)
What to eat and when on a workout day
Make it a practice to eat large meals at least three to 4 hours before working out. If you have a smaller sized meal, you can work out two to 3 hours after eating. Light snacks are typically fine when eaten right before and even during exercise. When you are done working out, you can enjoy a meal immediately.
By waiting to work out for a few hours after eating a meal, you can avoid getting stomach pain, cramping and diarrhea.. Eating lots of food right before exercising can also cause you to feel heavy and tired because your digestive system and the muscles you use to exercise are competing for energy. However, it's important to eat something before you work out and avoid skipping meals. Passing on a meal before you exercise could cause you to become weak or slow your reaction times.
Healthy carbohydrates are the best foods to eat before exercising. Get your carbohydrates from whole-grain cereals, pastas and breads as well as fresh vegetables. Avoid eating foods very high in fiber and fructose right before working out. Eating high-fiber legumes before exercising could cause you to develop uncomfortable gas, while fruit that is high in fiber and fructose could cause you to experience diarrhea after working out.
You should avoid eating fatty foods right before working out since fat takes longer to digest and can lead to stomach upset during exercise. Although fat and protein are important parts of any diet, it's more important that you fuel your body with healthy carbohydrates right before working out.
In an article on the ABC News website, sports nutritionist, Molly Kimball, suggests developing a schedule for eating and exercising that works for you. Kimball claims that you may be able to eat a meal and then work out immediately afterward without experiencing stomach upset or other ill effects. Try doing a test run by eating a meal and then performing moderate exercise. If you experience stomach cramps, stop exercising and try again later.
Pumpkin, spice and all things nice
Smoothie does it
Chocolate, coconut & banana bread that won't break the diet...
Stepping out of my comfort zone
Ideally, we should get enough from around 30 minutes exposure to the sun on a daily basis (depending on factors such as skin type, location, time of year). Hard to achieve in the UK.
(safely) increasing your sun exposure – this needs to be outdoors as it is the UVB rays which are needed to produce vitamin D
ensure you eat foods which naturally contain vitamin D, mainly oily fish and egg yolks, although these contain relatively small amounts which makes it difficult to achieve adequate levels through diet alone
supplements - choose one with a GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) mark, and ensure it is D3 ( cholecalciferol), which is 87% more effective in raising and maintaining vitamin D levels than D2 (ergocalciferol) (4)
vol. 84 no. 4 694-697
I’m now just under 12 weeks away from my competition date. My weight is coming down (albeit slowly) and I’m definitely seeing more muscle definition as a result of my training programme.
Just last weekend I was in Manchester at a posing workshop (yes, there are workshops to teach you how to pose!) hosted by the lovely Nina Ross, and boy, who knew there was so much to learn about posing! It was actually a really useful session, not only did I learn the poses I’ll need to adopt when I’m on stage, but I also discovered how uncomfortable said poses can be! But mostly I met some other lovely girls, some who’d competed before (Chloe – you look amazing!) and others who, like me, are competing for the first time. Nina also had some fab little hints and tips that she’s picked up over her years competing that will really make a difference to the way you look and move on stage.
So, armed with my new posing knowledge I made the journey back up to Newcastle to show my other half what I’d learnt!!
One thing I’ve discovered during my journey to the stage so far is just how much there is to do, learn, prepare…and it’s not cheap either. I’ve had to buy a bikini, shoes, tan, make up, the workshop…not to mention petrol, food and the mountains of protein powder I’m consuming!! Preparing for competition could easily become a full time occupation…if I didn’t already have one! Trust me when I say the amount of time and effort that goes into getting stage ready is fairly epic – thankfully I love being in the gym and as a creature of habit I find meal planning quite easy (well, I do now, it was hard to get into the swing of it at first).
And there are sacrifices to be made – going on an all-inclusive holiday where you don’t drink and have to resist the endless supply of food was my first real challenge, then going on a friend’s hen do and sticking to soft drinks was something I never thought I’d have to do, or survive if I’m honest! But I did and I even braved the karaoke!!
But despite the aching muscles, the lack of social life (no alcohol and food restrictions doesn’t make you want to be hugely sociable!) and the dwindling bank balance – I wouldn’t change anything. I’m really enjoying the challenge that getting stage ready is presenting me with and I’m determined to dedicate the next 12 weeks to getting my body in the best shape of my life…
To find out more about Nina Ross you can find her on Facebook (search “Nina’s Secret”), Twitter “@NinasSecretTM” or visit her website www.ninassecret.co.uk