Real food homework and a speedy/endurance track workout

This endurance body is happily fueled by real food.
Plant strong for almost 21 years.
A Karel creation:
Jasmine rice and a stir fry of tempeh, peanuts, onions, mushrooms, peppers and marinara on top arugula.
This creation was enjoyed last night and made my tummy/muscles super happy for an early morning wake-up call (4:20am) for a 5:30am track workout. 

Love your afternoon snack
Honor your biological hunger in the afternoon. Do not expect your body to allow you to go from lunch to dinner without food (especially if more than 4 hours between meals or if working out in the evening). A mid afternoon snack is a great way to nourish your body and boost energy. 
Here's one of my fav mid day snacks: 1/2 cup Chobani Greek yogurt + fresh fruit chopped + a few spoonfuls of KIND or organic granola. Enjoy!

Refueling from a long brick
Asparagus, mushrooms and tofu tossed with pasta noodles and marinara, topped with Parmesan.
Karel had the same (larger portion) but chicken instead of tofu. So much flavor! Yum!

Track workout w/ Karel and a large motivating group - feeling the need for speed (and endurance)
2 mile run warm-up
10 min dynamic stretching/warm-up on track
MS: 3x's through
(with 200 jog in between)
~1 min rest in between the 3 rounds to refuel/hydrate
(I had 1 scoop INFINIT ISIS Hydration in my bottle to sip during the workout)
~8 miles total (including warm-down laps in opposite direction)

Trimarni homework

Write down the ingredient lists of the foods you are consuming today. (If you are eating out, look up the ingredients online.)

This assignment is for product awareness and to help you form a healthier relationship with the food that you choose to put into your body. This is NOT designed to make you scared of food or to hate food.
Also, this homework is focused on the ingredients in food and not on focusing on organic, genetically modified, gluten, dairy.

Because there is an overload of information on how to "eat healthy" with so much conflicting information (and often causing a lot of disordered eating habits or feeling incredibly frustrated with food), the first step in creating a more balanced diet is to make an effort to eat more real food. Once you incorporate more real food into your daily diet, you will then need to gravitate toward making time to prepare food and maintain this real food diet. It does not have to be perfect (there's no such thing) but instead, make an effort to prioritize real food as much as possible with your daily meals/snacks.
(and stop reading forums/blogs when the "expert" is yelling at you about what foods are bad. Seek out information that inspires you and motivates you to make slow yet healthy changes that move you closer to your personal goals and contact a professional (RD) who will give you credible information. You can not make changes in your lifestyle if you are always worrying about what other people are doing and you will find yourself with info overload if you continue to use the internet to search for the "right" answer.)

Because it doesn't seem appropriate to start changing your eating habits by dissecting real food if you have yet to be consistent with eating food that is grown from earth, take a look at your daily diet to see what immediate changes may make a meaningful difference in your life and health.

Consider clinical, fitness, religious, ethical and personal experiences when it comes to individualizing YOUR diet.

Show yourself that you can prioritize real food for 2 weeks - making time to cook and time your meals/nutrition appropriately around your workouts and schedule- and your body will be in a better place to start making more individual choices with your diet.

There is so much information out there and many times, info that may not apply to you and your goals (or lifestyle).

Your occasional foods should be enjoyed and your daily diet should enhance life.

Simple swaps can easily improve your health and can keep you from feeling the itch to jump on the elimination food/mass marketed diet train. Instead of hearing that dairy is bad and is causing bloating, swap out the artificially flavored yogurt and replace with Greek Yogurt and add real fruit. If you have heard that whole grains are bad or gluten is bad, consider adding organic whole grains like quinoa, teff, millet or wild rice to your diet.

Like with anything in life, you can't rush changes when you want long lasting results.
So instead of wondering if you should choose organic oatmeal vs non-organic oatmeal.....

I recommend to first transition to using plain oatmeal and then adding your own fresh fruit, nut and spice add-in's instead of prioritizing a quick option like flavored oatmeal. 

It's an easy switch but it does require a lifestyle change. To prepare food ahead of time (and you need tupperware if you are taking this to work to eat)

But to make these changes, you have to not only buy the items but you have to plan ahead. And in our rushed society it's much easier to eliminate foods and "not" do something than to be more proactive and add something to our schedule (yet that something may improve health).

Simply identify any ingredients that may give you an "ah-ha" moment as to why you may not be feeling so "healthy" such as food dyes, artificial ingredients, additives/chemicals. Also ask yourself how and why you are consuming those foods. Remember - you can't eat a salad very well in a car and you can only stuff so much "salad" with your protein and healthy fat choices between two slices of bread. Is bread bad or is it what you are eating and when?

Your goal is to gradually move toward a more real food, balanced diet. Not only will real food make your body feel better but it's scientifically proven that a real food balanced diet provides your body with the necessary vitamins and minerals that can reduce risk for disease and improve longevity, health, performance and mood. If you love to eat and you like all those great outcomes of eating real food, what's keeping you from making the necessary small steps?

The ultimate goal is to not feel the pressure from "experts" who are brainwashing you to eliminate heart-healthy real-foods that may improve your health.

If you need individual help, seek out an RD to treat your individual body.

Happy real food eating and enjoying your body in motion.