This summer, Chris Gomez is taking his students to Six Flags and the first thing he’s going to do is ride a roller coaster. In fact, the kids may have a hard time getting him to do anything else. For Chris, a special education teacher from New York, being able to fit in to a coaster car again means another triumph on his weight loss journey.
At age 34, Chris admits to being slightly overweight most of his life with a few periods of weight loss in between, but due to emotional eating, late-night snacking and lack of portion control (eating multiple desserts), he could never keep the extra pounds off for very long. As a die-hard Mets fan and sports enthusiast, Chris knew as his weight continued to climb, his energy plummeted and his ability to participate in the activities he once enjoyed like softball, were beginning to decline.
Chris describes his a-ha weight loss moment, saying, “I was sitting at a friends’ house and ordered 20 chicken wings for lunch and half way through I realized that I couldn’t continue to do this to myself. One day a doctor would tell me that I was running myself into the ground and I would have nothing to do about it. So I decided enough was enough.”
In this fast paced age of instant gratification, young people are skipping breakfast in favor of checking their Instagram while they scramble to get to school or work on time. A new University of Missouri study aimed to quantify the nutritional benefits of the most important meal of the day. Moms in Missouri rejoiced, students were ecstatic for the free grub, and the results were just shy of major significance.
Twenty obese college girls were fed a breakfast high in protein (sausage and eggs), a normal protein breakfast (cereal), or no breakfast at all. Participants were given coolers full of unhealthy snacks to measure their appetite later in the day. While that may have been a misstep by the scientists considering Cheetos and Little Debbies are awfully tempting to any starving college student, the breakfast protein experiment did yield minor results. Researchers found that the more protein consumed during breakfast led to higher appetite satiety and decreased hunger later in the day. (more…)
By Team Best Life – TheBestLife.com
It may seem counterintuitive to take in calories before you head to the gym to burn them off, but eating a healthy bite beforehand can help you make the most of your workout. No matter what kind of activity you’re planning, you can use these tips to fuel up for fitness:
Eat when it feels best. Eating one hour before your workout is a good general rule, but everyone’s body is different. For instance, some people may feel uncomfortable or bloated trying to exercise after a snack or meal while others may be distracted by a rumbling tummy. Only you know exactly how much you can comfortably eat and how soon before your workout.
Keep track of carbs. Because glucose—a carbohydrate—is your muscles’ preferred source of fuel, you need to go into a workout with enough stored glucose (aka glycogen). If you eat a balanced diet, you should be all set. But if you’re hitting the gym hours after your last meal or snack, you might need a little carb boost; 15 grams should do the trick. (more…)
Kami Rivera’s biggest contributors to weight gain were a poor diet and neglecting exercise. These unhealthy habits snowballed in her late 20s and led her to weigh nearly 250 pounds. In 2007, things grew worse as a heart condition required Kami to have surgery. As a result she felt sidelined from any attempts to get healthy. Looking back she admits she leaned on that event for a long time as a crutch. She’d gotten into such a rut that she began believing her problems would be solved by doing nothing at all.
But in October 2011, things began to improve as Kami started eating better. And 2012 brought a New Year’s resolution to get more active. Her activity of choice? Title Boxing.
“I tried to think of a million excuses for why I didn’t want to do it, but I live right across the street from the [Title] studio,” she said. “I was able to hang for the first class, then I started going twice a week. Eventually each class got easier and easier and I was going about five times a week and maybe six if I could squeeze in a Sunday.”
Unlike ever before Kami was working focused on getting in shape and gaining both knowledge and inspiration from her boxing classes. Though she’d had a treadmill, total gym and weight bench at her home for a long time, she realized she’d just never found the motivation to use them. With boxing it was different. (more…)
Nary a gym exists without an ample supply of protein powder. For the seriously dedicated gym goer, protein powder is as important to their regimen as a good pair of shoes and a full water bottle. It’s necessary for post-workout recovery as much as it is pre-workout fuel. During a weight lifting workout, the muscle fibers are torn. Without proper recovery nutrition, rich in protein, the muscles aren’t able to rebuild. But, when you do consume a high-protein snack, the muscles repair properly, that’s when you start to see more defined muscle tone.
It’s not always convenient to eat a meal right after a workout, but a quick shake or other snack can be noshed on the go to ensure you get that shot of protein as soon as possible. Plenty of protein in your diet offers a sense of satiation too, meaning you feel fuller for longer after you’ve eaten.
Protein powders are one of the go-to sources for this nutrient, and shakes are the most popular use. In a vast variety of choices, from type, like whey or soy protein, to flavor, like chocolate and vanilla, the brands and options available are boundless. And outside of shakes, the uses are pretty wide open, too! Break free of the blender and try one of these protein-infused ideas.
You can healthify your baked goods with a scoop of protein powder added to the batter. For instance, in these Cinnamon Pecan Muffins use a 3/4 cup of protein powder to make them more satisfying and give you a protein boost to start you morning or on the way to the gym.
You already know that oatmeal is a powerhouse food, but a little protein can take this morning meal to the next level. “A scoop of vanilla [protein powder] with a big ol’ scoop of pumpkin puree and cinnamon is pretty awesome in oatmeal,” suggested Jenn from FitBottomedGirl.com. We’ll try not to get too excited about all the favor it offers, not to mention fiber, protein and other important nutrients. (more…)