Last week, I brought you Part One of the Lean & Lovely Method: Training and Exercise. Learning to exercise efficiently, in a way that gives you an edge in strength and fat loss is integral to your continued growth as a Lean & Lovely lady.
I started with the fitness aspect of things because as a busy mom and entrepreneur, I know how hard it is to carve out time for exercise. (In fact, I am currently typing this from the treadmill desk in my garage!) Time is truly your only non-renewable resource, and the Lean & Lovely workouts are designed to get you sweaty and successful in the least amount of time necessary.
While training efficiently is certainly a crucial ingredient of the fat loss recipe, nutrition is just as paramount, if not more. I’ve seen so many women work their butts off at the gym, failing to see results because their diet just wasn’t working for them–and it breaks my heart. As a fit foodie and someone who loves to cook, I like to keep nutrition uncomplicated, accessible, and most of all in harmony with my lifestyle.
Therefore, my operating thesis on food is quite simple:
Eat in a way that pleases both your palate and your physique.
If you only take one thing from this post, let it be that. Eating for fat loss is not deprivation or restriction. It doesn’t have to mean eating food that bores you, or lacking culinary creativity (please NEVER eat anything you don’t LOVE!). Physique friendly nutrition is really as simple as blending your body’s needs with that of your taste buds, and finding a happy medium that pleases both equally.
Despite what you may have been told, it’s entirely possible to simultaneously lose fat, build muscle and enjoy the food you eat. In fact, I firmly refuse to eat anything that doesn’t rock my world. Because you know what? Life is too short for steamed broccoli and bland chicken breast!
The “Please your Palate and Physique” method—as I like to call, it Triple P—is the key to an enjoyable fat-loss journey. There aren’t any crazy tricks or secret weapons; there’s just delicious healthy food, and a few very simple steps.
Eat an Abundance of Protein
How much protein you need is going to vary greatly from body to body, but nine times out of ten, I find that the women I work with aren’t eating enough protein to begin with. The general recommendation is .8-1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight, or about 5 palm sized portions of protein per day–with the average women coming it at barely 50% of that. Protein is absolutely imperative for muscle repair and growth, and muscle mass is an integral ingredient in the fat loss recipe. Not to mention, when you fill up on protein you’ll help curb your hunger and craving, and are less likely to reach for junk food.
I suggest you aim to eat protein with every meal, focusing on visual portions (such as 1-2 palms) as opposed to stressing out over the total grams. If you make your protein source the start of your meal, and build your plate around it, chances are you’ll consume enough.
Some Great Lean & Lovely Protein choices:
- Lean ground beef, chicken, or turkey
- Fish such as salmon, tilapia, and halibut
- Ground pork
- Grass fed steaks such as filet and top sirloin
- Chicken breasts and thighs
- Pork loin
- Eggs and egg whites
- Chicken sausage
- High quality whey protein powder
- Plant based protein powder
It’s extremely important to note that for your overall health, all animal products should be of the highest quality possible, and come from farms with ethical practices. If at all possible, buy local! Grass-fed, cage-free, and sustainably raised are all important–but chances are if you buy local, you’ll get just that. Not to mention that high quality animal products actually taste better, allowing you to dine in true Triple-P fashion.
*For resources in your area: Local Harvest
**For high quality animal products delivered directly to your door: US Wellness Meats
As much as possible I consume whole, minimally processed foods. But, when I finish up an especially tough workout, I really look forward to my post workout shake made with either BioTrust Low Carb or Tera’s Organic Whey. It curbs my sweet tooth, satiates my hunger, fuels my muscles, and is always made from the highest quality ingredients. For vegans and vegetarians, protein shakes made with Vega are especially important, since protein intake tends to be generally low.
Some of My Favorite Shakes
▪ 6–8 ounces iced coffee
▪ 1–2 scoops chocolate protein powder
▪ 1 tablespoons raw cacao powder
▪ 1/2 avocado
▪ 1/2 cup organic canned pumpkin
▪ 1/4 cup full fat coconut milk
▪ 1–2 scoops vanilla protein
▪ pumpkin pie spice