Nutrition

Conquering the Meal Plan

Woman-pulling-hair-out-620x426 This is me... Ok... It's not really me.  But it used to be me (sort of) every day when I would think about what's for dinner.  To try to come up with something different or new... So exhausting and so frustrating.  Well, I am conquering a self-discipline mountain right now in my world... MEAL PLANNING.  Oh, I've read countless supermoms' various touts about meal planning, budgeting to the penny, and their freezer cooking, but the idea simply seemed tedious and restrictive to me.  Do you feel that way?  Really... who has time to find new recipes that fit into our fitness goals?

Well, what I have discovered over the last 2 weeks (yes I'm still a baby at this) is the freedom of flavors that is suddenly opened up.  I go into the store with my list, and while I stray a little, I am no longer standing in the aisles at my local supermarket, frantically searching on my phone for a recipe for the night, only to end up with "healthy" processed foods, or the same boring salads... "When you fail to plan, you plan to fail..." Plan and simple.

So, I thought I would share with you our meal plan for this week!  I would also like to note that we start off each meal with either a Green Smoothie or a salad.  This is very important for your digestive system to have all the right enzymes to properly digest your foods!

Today we enjoyed a delicious Mushroom and Bean Soup.  I added some spinach with this, and we served it with our leftover Bean Burgers from last night.

Tuesday: Salads with Chebe biscuits (we don't use the cheese)

Wednesday: We are going out because of a concert we are going to... (did someone say Journey???)  Even though we are going out, we do not take this as a license to go crazy.  We stay within our guidelines, because of the fitness goals we are going after.

Thursday: I will be trying a new recipe, a vegan "Meat"loaf... I'm pretty excited to try it!

Friday: Taco salad night.  I cook up some onions, mushrooms, and peppers with taco seasoning, then serve with a salad, salsa, beans, and black olives.Apple Cinnamon Grain-Free Muffins

Saturday: I found a Quinoa/Amaranth pasta at Costco, we we will be giving that a try with a large serving of collard greens.  Even though this is a better version, we still reserve this for a "cheat" day.

Sunday:  I like to reserve a day as a "fridge" clean out kind of day.  I'll be pulling from whatever I have in there to make dinner.

For "dessert", I found this great Apple Cinnamon Flax Muffin recipe.  Everyone in our place loves them!

Enjoy!

~GiryaRunner

Impatience: KISS it Goodbye with A KISS

Pullups I want this to be me. My form. My back. My muscles. My leanness. Alas, I'm not there... YET. I AM proud to say that over the last 4 weeks I have lost 10 pounds! I'll be honest, it really hit me after shedding these 10 pounds that I really let myself get out of control. I know I am simply not as lean as what I know I could be. I feel shame. I feel guilt. I feel like a joke, being an expert in this field, and I let my guard down to all the temptations I warn against.

In response to this realization, I have come to some even bigger conclusions about how to be successful in improving my health. After all, I'm not on this path of self-improvement and discovery just for the fun of it. This path is painful. It's hard. It would be easier to close my computer right now and not face the demons before me. But that is not what we are meant to do. We are intended to come alongside each other in journey, arm in arm, vulnerable face to vulnerable face, and guide each other along the path of life. How selfish would it be of me to keep it all to myself? I hope just one thing I say can help one person who reads this to better themselves.

 

Most of you have probably heard the acronym KISS - Keep It Simple Silly. So we are going to KISS our health goals with A KISS - Accountability, Kick up the nutrition, Intensify our workouts, Sleep well, and Supplement as needed.

ACCOUNTABILITY. This is the most vulnerable step in the process, which ultimately makes it the most crucial. “Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.” - Brene Brown - When I hung my head, admitted my shortcomings, asked for my husband's support, and put myself before you all, there was a complete shift. I know there are people out there watching me, seeing what I will do. Would I give up? Did I truly want to make the "lifestyle change" I so desperately needed? Simply knowing there is someone I have to answer to, well that is a crucial change. If you do not have anyone you can ask to be this person for you, feel free to email me directly at lisa@synergykt.com.

KICK UP THE NUTRITION. I was healthy. I posted up my blood work numbers a few months ago. I was strong. I jerked the 70# bell over head. I ate my fruits and veggies. But I also ate processed and acidic foods. I fudged when there were special events, like eating the chips and dips or the biscuits and pasta. I told myself that it was "my cheat day" or that "I deserved a day to enjoy myself". Looking back on it, admittedly, those cheat meals left me hormonally imbalanced and cranky (sorry Bob) as well as back on the addiction train. I also ate too many of the "healthy" treats, like Paleo desserts and too much well-raised meats.  What I have discovered for myself, and many clients, is that it is an absolute must to reset the body to break these vicious cycles, whether it's with a strict veggie and fruit diet for a duration of time, through a 3 Day Cleanse (found on our Member's Only page), or a 10 day Clean Burn Shape Detox.

INTENSIFY YOUR WORKOUTS. "It's my light day"..."I'm listening to my body"..."I'm recovering from an injury"... ok ok ok... so some of these are valid, BUT a lot of times they are excuses we tell ourselves so we don't need to push ourselves. There have been about 3 days over the last month that I fully had it in my schedule to go workout or run, but I decided against it because I was hardly able to keep my eyelids open! But, there were probably about 5 days that I just didn't want to go. But. I. Went. And I conquered. Hardly will you regret going for that heavier weight or going that extra half mile or just showing up, and often that is where you will see your biggest changes.

SLEEP WELL. Get your 7-8 hours of sleep. It's a must. I could link you to a dozen sites which tout the importance of this, but I think you get the idea. If you have problems sleeping, look into some dried cherries or tart cherry juice, (available at Fruitful Yeild) which has natural melatonin to assist in falling asleep.

SUPPLEMENT AS NEEDED. While supplementation is not always needed long term, and each person may not need the same thing, it's important to know what your body is needing. For me, there were two key supplements I found which helped me HUGE!!! The first is the Burn product. This product helps me to keep my blood glucose levels balanced, thus minimizing my cravings for breadlike products, pastas, and other high grain products. The second is the Raw Code Healthy Blood Iron supplement. I was craving beef BIG TIME, which is known to be a sign of low iron, and I have been known to have low iron in the past. By supplementing this essential mineral, my craving for beef has dissipated greatly! It is very important that this piece is the last in the puzzle, because if the other parts are in disarray, you'll be wasting your money.

These are just some of the key factors I have really brought into my life this last month. Over the next few months, you can look forward to some more in depth looks at these areas, as well as some of my new struggles I am looking to overcome!  When it comes to A KISS, what area do you need the most support in?  Where do you need the biggest support from us, your community?

~Girya Runner

Food Addict

Lisa Garon  

I woke up on Mother's Day, feeling, well... kinda crappy.  Oh I was happy enough with the day, but I just felt ... YUCK!!!  I had a thought cross my mind I really should talk with Bob...I need some help...

About what you ask? About my out-of-control eating.

Yes, I am an addict. I am addicted to food. And now I am bringing my honesty to you.

I am the on-the-go stuffer. There are all kinds of us out there. There are the late-night scroungers, the eaters of what-my-kids-eat, the stressed-and-zapped snackers, and the fancy-and-delish foodies.

This is not an easy admission... you see, I'm the expert, right? I help others and hold their hand through the rough moments and days. I have studied just about every diet that has come about. I have detoxed. I have supplemented. I have lost pounds... over and over and over again.

But... it's ok to have chocolate cake once in awhile, right? Or the deep dish pizza? And, if I skip my salad a day or two or five... I'll be ok, right?

 

So, when I talked with Bob, I asked him, not only for his accountability, but also for his support as I gain control on this part of my journey. Now I come to you, asking for your accountability and support. Do you find yourself in the same spot...? Do you need support too? Let our community know below or email me directly.

Girya Runner ~Lisa Garon

A Lesson From A Freight Train

train1 A few weeks ago, Bob and I were driving down Kirk Road to go home. Now, considering why I had taken that route instead of another, I don't know. It would have made more sense to take my normal way home. Maybe it was to teach me this lesson, which I am about to share with you.

As we come up over the hill, I see the gate lowering and lights flashing... uh-oh... A train! Now, this wasn't the fast passenger train, if you know what I mean. And to top it all off, I don't think I've ever actually come across a train at these tracks! Well, I was perturbed, determined that I need to find another way around. I mean, how dare a train cross MY path, right?

Well, my wonderful husband Bob, in all his wisdom, as I'm about to turn the car around, says "Lisa, we aren't in a hurry. Just wait." I paused for a moment. Huh...I thought to myself, He IS right. We AREN'T in a hurry. So we waited. I breathed. I looked around. I put on some music. Wouldn't you know it, that train only took about 3 minutes to pass!

So, is this lesson all about a train? No. Here it is: How many times do we look at what is ahead of us and let it deter us from our goal? It is easy to look at what we want to accomplish, better health blood tests, fitting into those favorite jeans from a few years ago, educating ourselves in our passion, and get deterred because of an obstacle or two that pop up. Sometimes, I will concede, we do need to go around. However, sometimes we are meant to wait through the obstacle and let it make us stronger, more patient, and consistent day to day to achieve whatever our greater purpose is. When you are facing your train, which is seeming to block your path to success, try waiting it out first before making rash decisions which can put you behind.

Oh, and in case I didn't get the lesson the first time, I've now had 2 other train situations similar to this very one since... LOL!

Girya Runner Lisa Garon

Essential Kitchen Gadgets

We all get our kitchen with some basics built in. Some come with the house, like your refrigerator, oven/stove, countertops, sink/dishwasher, etc. Some you just naturally seem to have on hand, like your measuring tools, mixing bowls, microwave, and maybe even a Crockpot. Even in the midst of the clutter of your kitchen, there is a good chance you might just be missing a few key necessities to make your life a little easier and healthier! If you don't, you might simply be spinning your wheels, feeling overwhelmed at how much time even simple things can take. What are some essential pieces to keep on hand in your kitchen?

A good knife set and some wooden cutting boards are definite essentials, because you should be using these a few times a day for chopping, dicing, mincing, and preparing all your fresh fruits and veggies. Having a variety of knives to select from is always good because you may find you prefer different knives for different needs. Having more than one cutting board is great because then you can switch them out - example: what if you are cutting up a pineapple and the cutting board simply gets too messy to do anything else with it? Keep these items handy!

I really don't want to imagine life without my food processor. I have a 10 cup food processor that has an S-blade, as well as the plate that can be used for shredding or slicing all kinds of produce, including sweet potatoes for a Sweet Potato Hash Brown. Just this morning I made my own walnut butter with just a small touch of honey, cinnamon and raisins, all in about 3 minutes!

The last essential is my blender. Both Vita-mix and Blendtec are my most highly recommended, but start with what you have! We use ours daily to make our Green Smoothies, and it's also necessary to make Raw Cashew Cheese and all kinds of soups!

Items that are NOT necessary (BUT if you already have them, don't just throw them out... They can still be useful):

Juicer - Juicing has a lot of really great benefits, and I personally invested in a solid juicer a few years ago. However, because juicing is so time consuming and the clean up can be quite the hassle, too many start strong and then simply fall off the bandwagon within a few weeks. Start with blending and Green Smoothies first. If you are ready to move to juicing, I always advise to get a simple, low-cost version and see if you can make it into a habit before you make a big time purchase. I never advise for ongoing to only juice. I believe a blend of juicing and blending is best.

Dehydrator - Unless you will be following a strict Raw Diet, in which case this would become your "oven", this is a bulky piece of equipment which can really seem more of an inconvenience on your counter or in your cabinet then it's initially worth. Many items can be dehydrated in your oven if the temperature drops down below 200 degrees.

Ice Cream Maker - I bought one for a good price, and just didn't want to pass it up. I hate to admit that I have not taken the chance yet to teach myself how to make delicious dairy free ice cream, my original intention. So it sits until I feel inspired once again.

What is a small kitchen tool or appliance that you have really loved to help you in your healthy journey? Please leave a comment!

~Girya Runner (Lisa Garon)

Measurable Tools of Physical Success

 

We live in a world of measurements. Specific and attainable goals. If your goals are financial, success might be measured by bank statements, how big your house is, your the kind of car you drive. If your goal is social status, success may be measured by how many lunches, dinners, and social outings you have or by your social circle of friends. What if I purpose to you the possibility that perhaps when it comes to physical health, we might be using the wrong measurement tool to determine our level of physical health? What if all too often we are experiencing successes in all areas, but we step on that scale and we are defeated?

INCHES. I am a big fan of full measurements as a tool of physical success. Riddle me this: Which is heavier: a pound of fat or a pound of muscle? The answer: They are both the same of course! However the pound of muscle is more dense and will take up less space, even if the weight doesn't change. So, while you are working hard sweating at the gym and watching what you eat, that fat IS disappearing. You are losing fat, but you are gaining muscle too.

HEALTH NUMBERS. I have in my family a risk of heart disease and diabetes. Because of this, I first started having regular blood work done before I was 30. I love this time each year to see where my levels line up, because it shows me the BIG PICTURE of my health. We tend to get uptight after we have that cheat meal or we fall off the wagon during vacation, but to see the overall picture once a year really affirms to me that I am on the right track! I posted some of my own recent results a few weeks ago... click here!

CLOTHES. How do those jeans fit? Do you have to squeeze into them, or do they slip on a little more comfortably? Are the bumps and lumps disappearing? YAY!!! Success looks good on you :D

WORKOUT IMPROVEMENTS. One of the greatest joys I get in my profession as a nutritionist and working out next to people in our gym is to see their real and tangible successes! Whether it is the first time someone does a push-up without modifications or the first time they swing the BEAST (106 pounds) or the first time they aren't too sore to move the next day... LOL! These are the real results we can hang on to each day. Easily measurable day to day to see a growth in progress.

TEST YOURSELF. While I am not a competitive person, I do feel it is vital to test our limits occasionally to know where we stand. Get out there and run a race ~ 5k, 10k, half marathon, full marathon. Challenge yourself with an obstacle course race like a Spartan Race. Enter into a weight lifting competition - I know of several Kettlebell Sport competitions around the country and it is always a good test of your abilities!

I have had conversations with many a person who are excited about how they feel, how their clothes fit, about their day to day results in the gym, only to be knocked off their feet when they don't see the number on the scale where they desire. Consider ALL the tools of measurement, and keep the scale in perspective!

~Girya Runner (Lisa Garon)

If you would like any follow up information on anything you have read here, please e-mail me at lisa@synergykt.com.

Real Benefits of Veggies and Fruits

You've heard it before: Eat your vegetables. We are hit over the head with it from our doctors, nutritionists, news media, friends, crazy fad diets, legit fad diets, and the list goes on and on. BUT if someone were to ask you straight up "Why? Why should I eat vegetables?" how would you answer it? "Uh... they are good for you?".... Haha... Yes, that's true, but let's break that down a little more so we know why they are good for you...

All around us are toxins... They float in the air we breath. They are in the lotions and cosmetics we put on. They are in the foods we eat. Our body makes toxins depending on our stress levels. The list can go on and on. These toxins do free-radical damage (just a fancy term for the breakdown of your cells) to your body, causing it to become full of symptoms - ranging from faster aging to illnesses to deadly diseases. Vegetables and fruits have anti-oxidants (think of this as a kind of cellular medicine). These fight against the inevitable damage done to our bodies will succumb to throughout our lifetime. They also provide necessary nutrients for optimal recovery from our workouts!

Below are some real benefits of eating your veggies and fruits: Vitamin C

Can be found in: Citrus Fruits, Cabbage-like Vegetables, Cantaloupe

Beneficial for: Healing wounds & strengthening bones, teeth, and blood vessels

Vitamin E

Can be found in: Green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds

Beneficial for: Promoting heart & respiratory health and helps maintain healthy brain function

Beta-Carotene

Can be found in: Broccoli, Spinach & other dark leafy greens, Deep orange vegetables and fruits

Beneficial for: As a pre-cursor to Vitamin A (necessary for the growth and repair of body tissue)

You may be in a situation in which you have a nutrient deficiency, or be struggling with an infection or disease in which nutritional therapy my be of a benefit. If this is the case, may I suggest to contact a Naturalpath doctor. They should have the ability to do a blood test to see what you may be deficient in, and be able to give you higher doses of those nutrients. Email me at lisa@synergykt.com if you would like a referral or if you have any questions!

~Girya Runner (Lisa Garon)