In looking back at my life over the past 6 years, I have stayed extremely active with my triathlon lifestyle but I have also created some awesome habits that keep me happy, consistent and healthy.
It isn't rocket science to create this lifestyle habits but it's so hard at times because of all the chatter out there as to the right, wrong ways of doing things. It's like everyone is an expert out there as to how you should live but obviously, they don't walk in your shoes.
I think one of the hardest parts of training for sports or appreciating a more balanced diet is the trust factor. It's almost as if athlets fail at their continual attempts to live a healthier lifestyle by losing trust in their own actions as soon as someone starts talking about a better, newer, faster or easier way to do things. One thing I've learned over the years is to focus on myself. Sounds sellfish but hey, it's my life and I have a lot of responsibilities in my life.
As a professional, my knowledge comes from textbooks, journals and scientific research. I will occasionally read the outrageous blog posts, articles and facebooks posts from people talking about x-diet or training advice...but I always go back to applying scientific evidence to real world settings. I just don't have time to waste energy on people screamng to others to DO THIS AND DON'T DO THAT!!! Yes - that is how people talk on the web...why do people sound so angry all the time when their intent is to convince you to change something in your life to "be heathier"?
Again- I just don't have the energy to focus on what I am not suppose to do....I suppose that is because I am doing too much of the right things in life, that make me feel good.
Tuesday morning was an early workout on the track. What a great feeling to be excited to train with others - running in circles at 6:30am. I joined Karel and Jeff for the same workout as last week - 3 x 1 miles w/ 400 meters jog/walk in between.
6:12, 6:08, 6:07 per mile.
Thank you legs for that one!
I wasn't able to bike with the guys for I had to work at Baptist South. I suppose I could have made the time to bike but it's all about balance.
For me, the extra time spent on recovery is more worthwhile than an hour on the bike for with proper recovery, I train more consistently and I don't have to worry about getting injured or gettng sick.
Around 5:15pm, it was time for workout #2.
1 hour bike + 2 mile run
It was a quicky but a goodie.
Main set on bike: 5 x 4 min upper/mid Z4 w/ 2 min EZ
Run off the bike - 1 mile "hard", 1 mile cool down.
Every workout has a purpose and this was a great finish to the day.
But, my day wasn't over at 6:45pm.
I had a few more priorities to keep my consistent with my "balanced lifestyle"
-Run 1/2 mile with Campy around the block
-Make dinner - quick!
-Make breakfast for Wed (due to going straight to work after swim/weights)
-Make lunch for Wed
As soon as I finished my run with Campy, I turned on the oven and a pan on the stove (to medium heat).
I ran upstairs for a quick shower, then back downstairs to prep dinner.
I chopped eggplant, washed mushrooms, chopped onions, steamed corn and broccoli and sliced tomatoes.
I put 3 tilapia in the oven (marinated with dressing) for Karel (dinner and lunch the next day) and cooked my veggies on the stove in olive oil.
As the veggies were cooking, I scrambled 2 egg whites + 1 whole egg in the microwave for my protein the next day.
As I was cooking dinner, I had a glass of milk + handful of shredded wheat cereal and a few strawberries.
And just in time - Karel came home around 7:20pm from work and dinner was ready....
And so was breakfast, snacks and lunch for the next day.
Breakfast - leftover smoothie from Tues morning, consumed after swimming on Wed w/ banana and PB.
Mid morning snack - non fat dannon yogurt + nuts/seeds + blueberries, cinnamon, cheerios and pecans (more like breakfast #2 during my break teaching the Diabetes Class at Baptist Beaches)
Lunch....as pictured below....bed of dark greens, w/ leftover veggies, scrambled eggs, leftover Basmati rice and topped w/ mozzarella cheese, drizzled with sunflower oil and for crunch, some pistachios on the side.
My lifestyle works for me. I think ahead, plan ahead and work ahead. The other day I received an email from a Trimarni Nutrition athlete who told me at 9pm she decided to bake some veggies in the oven for lunch the next day - for she was busy around the house so she thought she may as well make lunch the next day. Funny thing is that she said that that idea would have never occured to her before we started working together. I guess a few years ago, it didn't occur to me either but I desired more consistency in my life and I discovered better use of my time.
It's moment like those that make me really happy that I can inspire others to live a healthier lifestyle. I suppose I could rejoice with you that chocolate is now "approved" to be "healthy" (According to this study) OR you can just eat dark chocolate because you like it. In our household, dark chocoalte is a daily thing (1 ounce for me). But believe it or not, I don't eat chocolate just because a research study tells me it is healthy. I enjoy it, I savour it and it works for me.
Even for myself, it is difficult to put all your trust into research, articles and the media. Because food is such a sensitive topic for many, the best advice I can give in this blog is to make every minute count. Take that advice as you wish but perhaps next time you are eating because you are bored, trying to put off something that you don't want to do, emotional, stressed or tired....be sure to let food enhance your lifestyle, not control your life. You can't live your life fearing cancer and at the same time, you aren't living life if you are constantly obsessing about your body. Let your choices in life, work in your favor and before you know it, you will be living the life you never could have imagined....and yes, it feels that good to live a balanced lifestyle.
Disclaimer: I have to admit that this little guy make me feel so lucky to be alive and healthy. I just love making memories for him in his short little life.