When a Metabolic Nutrition Coach says ‘I understand’ & what her 9month progress pic looks like…

I pride myself on encouraging others with their health so here I am sharing my story so you can see how an everyday person just like me lives through the struggles of life.

It’s not common to see a reverse before & after, especially from a Metabolic Nutrition Coach so it took me a long time to click the publish button today.

Lets #throwback to the end of March this year when I was just weeks away from stepping onto the bodybuilding stage as a Fitness Model.

stage-pic

 

To get me to this day was about 4 months of measuring every meal, 6 grueling workouts every week, countless hours of posing sessions to enhance my physique & even more hours spent in front of the mirror wondering why I didn’t have a six pack like all the other competitors. I loved every minute of it.

On the inside my body was fighting a plethora of hormone issues which I later found out, date back to quite few years ago. My doctor decided to throw me on a few medications to rectify it & at the time I didn’t think anything of it. I was going to get to that stage & by god I gave it every ounce of determination that I had. Physically, I needed to get super lean for a Bodybuilding show, restrict my food intake, train like a mad woman & all to prove to myself I could take my training/nutrition to the next level.  My new medication was telling my body to do the exact opposite, slow down, eat more &  gain some body fat.

I was neglecting my health to say the least.

Fast forward to October…

Over the passing months, a lolly bag of assorted hormones went down the hatch with each specialist that I saw. The Pathologist no longer needed to look at my form to greet me when I walk in the room & you can throw in a major operation as well.

My worst side effect was the very last. Within 7 weeks of starting a new hormone med, I had gained 7 kgs!! No change in nutrition or training just my own hormones literally freaking out & as a consequence, I suffered weight gain, anxiety & a big hole in my confidence with the medical system.

Another 3 weeks later & I was up another 2.5kgs! Net gain…. 9.5kgs in 10 weeks…!!! Not only did the scales get a good beating but now the doctors were starting to get a little concerned. They were getting used to me crying in the consulting rooms but soon I wouldn’t be able to fit through their door.

That smile is fake, I looked nothing like I should have & felt gross because of it.

They told me I should be cutting down my food & to increase my cardio exercise to drop the weight. Oh, plus they gave me another script for good measure.

I said no Thank-you.

I put my foot down from that day & said no more hormones & no more specialists. The Dr agreed.

I did end up having another major operation in the end but I stuck to my 5-6 metabolically precise meals a day, ate plenty of variety & definitely no weighing food. I was probably about 90-95% compliant with my usual eating habits plus the occasional meal or snack here & there that was out of routine. #hospitalsandwhiches

I still completed 4x45min weight sessions plus 1-2x 20min cardio a week. Nothing out of the ordinary for me at all.

My body had lost trust in me for some time so if I wanted good health had to nurture it with good nutrition/exercise choices before it was going to reward me.

 

11weeks later to yesterday…

progress-2016

Weight: Unknown

Measurements: Unknown

Mentality & Overall Health: No anxiety, a clearer head space & hormones slowly starting to settle

Overall 11 week progress: Bloody Excellent

Fat-loss down & muscle mass up

Am I where I want to be? Not yet

Am I still working hard to get there? You bet… and I’m not going to sacrifice my own health to get there either!

progress-side-2016

 

This year has been a complete whirlwind & even though I threw in the towel more times than I can count, I still have something I thought was worth sharing. For me, sharing my progress makes me even more accountable to my goals & I also hope inspires someone else to just keep going. Never underestimate what your own body is saying, trust the science behind good nutrition & exercise & don’t be afraid to speak up to your Dr if something isn’t right.

You will take many steps forward and many steps back but that’s life so we just roll with the punches & learn from our mistakes.

My next step towards even better health is already in place so I look forward to sharing it with you soon & as always feel free to PM me if you have any questions!

 

 

Eating Healthy On A Budget

Like it or not, most of us need to budget our spending on food.

Ever since I put on my big girl pants and moved out of home, I started taking notice of how much I spent on food.

Many times have I fallen victim to the supermarket trance of aimless shopping. When you see those bright and shiny sales signs, your carefully constructed list goes out the window and it’s only when you get home that you realise you’ve been hit once again.

My worst offence was about a year ago. Three packets of wasabi peas for 99c each! So cheap right? Better get a few of them…I couldn’t resist!

Note to self… ‘Check expiry date on gross peas’

I get asked a lot about how to create cheap, nutritious & filling meals while steering clear of carb laden foods like rice & pasta.

Here are a few tips I tell them about.

#1 Specialty Shops For The Win!

Ever been into a Asian Supermarket? If you can get past that strange smell, you’ll find them packed with aisles of exotic foods & lets be honest, you’ve got no idea how to pronounce, let alone be game enough to taste. Never fear, because you’ll find allot of products that are half the price than the regular Supermarkets. Not only can you get a better price on rice etc. but the bargain for me were tins of coconut milk 3 for $2.00 plus  Thai soup mix for 80c a packet! I’ve seen the same one in Coles for $4.49! Definitely worth checking out every so often to stock up on things you can store in the pantry. 

 

#2 Don’t Be Afraid

Recent studies are showing that the nutrient value in fresh & frozen produce is negligible. Occasionally I will chop & freeze any fruit or veg into snap lock bags for use later on, or just buy the prepacked stuff in the supermarket. My most recent purchase at Aldi was 99c frozen spinach. My smoothies, casseroles & soups have been getting a big dose of the green stuff & I can’t even tell the difference between fresh & frozen. Don’t even get me started on their frozen beans either which are $1.99 for 1kg. They are so fresh & don’t have many of those annoying branch bits in them either.

 

#3 Sign Up!

Foodworks, Tasman Meats & other grocers offer member only specials when you subscribe. In my opinion it’s seriously worth the email spam because I picked up premium rump steak for $10.99kg, 40c cauliflowers & chicken breast for $4.99kg. Get onto it now & buy as much as you can freeze.

capture

#4 Spend 6 Mins or Less

This is me sitting down armed with a black pen & the weekly food pamphlets. Circle whats in season, on special or tempting your taste buds. Be mindful of how many places you are prepared to visit in one week & choose 2-3 at the most. I have also been known to set a reminder on my phone for market day specials & buy out the entire place of broccoli. No broccoli for Gretchen Weiners.

#5 Bulk Up

I love something cheap, easy to prepare & nutrient packed so pulses & legumes are my savior. The canned version is ideal as you can rinse & add to dishes straight away. But if you have some time up your sleeve opt for the dried version. Cheaper again & you just need to soak them for 8hrs/overnight before adding to dishes. Pulses & legumes are low fat, packed with protein, fiber & minerals such as iron, zinc, folate & B vitamins.Check out this snack idea from Lean Green Bean, great for the movies & lunch boxes.

http://www.theleangreenbean.com/how-to-roast-chickpeas/  

#6 Write It Down

Shopping Lists are a sure fire way to avoid unnecessary buying. Write a quick weekly meal plan based from your pamphlet selection & write each individual recipe item & quantity onto your list. This way you are unlikely to run short of anything and make that dreaded second trip to the shops where you will probably buy another 4-5 items more than you needed to. Then when you hit the shops you’ll be armed with a proper list & no need to wander into the aisles looking for #foodspiration

 

 

5 Ways to Make The Most Of Your Lemon Tree

 

IMAG0336

It’s always around this time of the year that I consider a variety of options… should I run a lemonade stall..? I wonder if the neighbors would mind if I start donating/throwing lemons over their fence..? Why are lemons so expensive at the shops when people can’t even give them away?

Yep, our lemon tree is bursting & I’m running out of options to use them. In fact, I’m pretty sure 4 extra lemons grow overnight in place of one I picked yesterday.

Lemons are one of the most versatile fruits in the citrus family, limes a close second but that’s for another blog. They contain an abundance of vitamin C and folate so why shouldn’t we consume more of them?

So I do what every other person in the world does… Google. Quick fix, that should do the trick.

Not sure if anyone else has done this, but you are greeted with a whole stack of sugar/ fat laden recipes. Being an MP girl, I’m especially looking for recipes that are ‘Metabolic Friendly’ & not ones that I only have on the odd occasion.

Without the help from the net, I had to make up my own ideas. I guess I’m giving Google a gift if you look at it from a different angle.

Try a few of these at home or pass onto someone else who might be drowning in lemons.

Don’t forget the easiest way of storing juice for future use is in the ice cube trays. Pick them up in the $2 shops & you’ll never run out of supply!

Here are the top 5 ways I like to use my lemons…. #5 is my ultimate favourite so I gave you the entire recipe!

IMAG0337

 

  • Lemon & Pepper Chicken Risotto

Include one whole lemon juice & rind to your next chicken & mushroom risotto.                       Sprinkle cracked pepper as desired & thank me later.

 

  • Lemon Cordial

Juice up 1 lemon & add to 1L of water. Add stevia drops to sweeten if desired. Chill                 & shake bottle before serving.

 

  • Slow Cooked Beef Stew

If you are doing the good old fashion beef stew in the slow cooker, this is your                          chance to add a great twist. Just before serving, fold in the rind of 1 lemon & fresh                  rosemary. Once the heat hits them, they’ll become fragrant & delicious.

 

  • Lemon Yogurt Dressing

Greek yogurt, olive oil, mixed herbs, lemon juice & rind. Mix them together & add                   to salads, fish or chicken. Best made the night before to enhance flavours.

 

 

  • Lemon Slice Protein Shake

             Everything you can remember in the good ole favourite slice is here in a delicious                    treat which is high in flavour & protein, but also low in sugar.

 Lemon slice smoothieIngredients:     1/2 Lemon –juiced

                              1tsp Lemon Rind

                              1tsp Ground Flaxseeds

                               1/2cup Quick Oats

                                1scoop Vanilla Protein Powder

                                100gms Low Fat Cottage Cheese

                                 1tsp Dried Coconut or Essence

                                  150gms Skim Milk

                                   ICE

Add all ingredients (except Ice) and blend until smooth. Add ice as required.

 Serves 1

MBBM