Why you and I should fast

Let me first start off by saying that fasting is NOT the same as starving yourself.  There are several reasons why people choose to fast, weight loss being at the top of that list.  So, why fast????

In a recent article from Mark’s Daily Apple, mark goes over all the in’s and out’s of fasting.  It is fascinating.  Since starting the primal diet I choose to fast every Sunday.  Usually Saturday night is my cheat meal so I always feel better starting the week fresh with a 24 hour fast.  This means that I don’t consume anything for a full 24 hours…including water.  So Saturday night I do a good carb load and then I won’t eat again until Sunday at dinner.   Some might think that this is a little too extreme.  Its really not as crazy as it seems!  I have really grown to enjoy my fasts and I always begin the week re-motivated and not feeling like I blimped out!!  I will even fast during the week if I slipped up really bad on my diet.

So, some common questions with fasting…

Is it ok to exercise while you’re fasting??  Absolutely, so long as you don’t feel light headed.  I have started working out on an empty stomach in the mornings and I find that I have had way more energy!

Will I lose weight while fasting?  Obviously you will lose some weight because you are restricting your calories.  Fasting decreases insulin levels which also decreases body fat.

How long can I fast for?  You can fast as long as you want as long as you are hydrating if you chose to go over 24 hours.  You will also need to take some vitamin supplements and really educate yourself about fasting first.

I have found fasting to be very helpful and motivational.  If you are wanting to know more about it, check out mark’s link and frequently asked questions page.  There are a ton of health benefits to fasting.  Totally worth educating yourself about it.  Especially if you have hit a plateau.  Share your thoughts!!  :)

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converting your favorite recipes!

Every family has their favorite recipes.  One of my favorite things to do is take our family favorites and convert them into meals that work for our diet!

Example:  My kids love to have hamburgers and french fries.  I want to make sure they are still eating the meals they love, but tweaking them so that we don’t join in on the high carb diet trend.

Dinner on Saturday:  100% ground chuck, or we use ground venison.  I add loads of spices and make them into patties and grill em’ up.  I make sure that I add quality toppings.  Bacon, avocado, onion, tomato, spinach,.  Sometimes i will splurge and let them use a bun but most of the time we have them low-carb style.  Then instead of regular fries we have sweet potato fries and the kids love those!!

Example 2:

tacos

We love mexican food at our house!  With some tweaking we can make it totally primal!  I use any type of of meat and season it with this taco seasoning:

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

I throw in onions, bell peppers, jalapenos (I take the membrane out if I’m feeding kids) tomatoes.  I let them simmer and soften.  Then instead of eating it on taco shells, we eat it as a salad.  There are extremes you can go to if you really want tortillas.  I know there is a recipe for coconut flour tortillas somewhere.  delish!

My kids love orange chicken.  Here is a sample of a recipe that has not yet been converted…

  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 teaspoon salt and pepper, or to taste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil coconut
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1/2 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (14 ounce) can coconut milk
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed, diced tomatoes
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 3 tablespoons sugar  honey

Here is a SUPER handy website for converting ingredients.

Now most parents will complain that their kids won’t eat some of these things.  Well, with my experience, if you keep putting the veggies on their plate day after day they get used to it.  Just don’t give up!  Try to enforce good eating habits now!

Make sure you avoid cream of whatever soups and fake foods that have 8 million ingredients.

Happy cooking!!

How mobility fixed my knee pain!

So today I’m talking about mobility.  I am no master of it myself, but I can tell you what has helped me a ton!  Its not just stretching!   I used to walk into the gym every day and sit on a mat and touch my toes and what not.  I thought I was super flexible because I could touch my toes!  hahaha. It was not until my level 1 certification that I realized how bad my issue was.  I had a problem with my knees caving in on my squats.  Normally when you squat down your weight should be on your heels and your knees should drive outward.  My problem was my knees would drive inside of my ankles and my weight would be on my toes.  This was causing a ton of pain in my knees when lifting and running!  So, along with some fellow trainers and a Dr. we figured out what my problem really was.  see photo:

What we realized when I was trying to tackle this issue is that I had VERY little hip flexibility. I never thought that my knee problem could be derived from my hip….BUT it totally was!  My problem, and most people’s problem is their IT band.  Now, if you are anything like I was, you probably have never even heard of this tricky ligament.  It runs from the hip to the top of the knee.

Because I was not flexible in my hips, my IT band was really tight and causing problems all the way down to my knee.  So, here’s what I did.  I made sure every day before and after workouts that I rolled it out, either on a foam roller or a lacrosse ball (OUCH).

I did a different stretching regiment  that included stretches like these ones…

and I would also drop into a super low squat (think like how a baby squats) and hold it for a few minutes.  If you can hold a super low squat, find something sturdy to hold on to while you do it. I focused about 20 minutes a day on my hip flexibility and I can say that now I have absolutely no knee pain!  Its amazing!   If you’ve got some good tips about knee pain, comment and let us in on it!