Time for Bed

 When we think about our health and fitness, many times we focus on the food we eat or on our exercise routine. Many of us focus on both of those but too little people think about rest.

 See the thing about our body is that it desires this balance in order to perform optimally and based on a crazy work life or school we often neglect the rest portion of things. Sleep offers us a plethora of benefits, from memory improvement, improved athletic performance and improved learning. However, the benefits I will be focusing on are improved athletic performance, reduced susceptibility to being ill and weight control.

Sleep and weight control 

It is noted that patients with obstructive sleep apnea are frequently obese and are predisposed to weight gain. Therefore have an unobstructed night of rest allows for weight control in individuals. As lack of sleep affects the leptin in our body which by extension impacts our body’s ability to regulate our appetite. The inability to control one’s appetite results in overeating and as such weight gain.

Sleep and athletic performance

If you want to be able to lift well or perform any exercise-related task then adequate sleep is necessary. Note that adequate sleep for everyone is different, however, it is recommended that we get anywhere between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night. Research has shown that a lack of sleep negatively impacts athletes performance.

Sleep and illness

Whether physical or mental sleep influences our well-being and it is noted that individuals who get more sleep take less sick days that those who do not. Additionally, sufficient rest can decrease depression as sleep affects our hormones and it is at this time that the body does it cleaning and repairing. As such, getting adequate rest gives the body enough downtime to get its job done.

So how about you stop neglecting your rest. Your body will truly thank you for it. Here are some tips to help you get a goodnight’s rest.

  1. Create a sleep routine, by doing this your brain will know once you start the process that it is time for bed and allows for your body to star whining down. 
  2. Have a set bedtime. 
  3. End the use of technology 30 to 45 minutes before your scheduled bedtime. 
  4. Try meditation, lay in bed and practise mindful breathing to allow your body to relax. 
  5. Play soothing music at a low volume to help lull you to sleep. 

I hope this information will allow you to think about your sleep habits and help you to rest easy. Remember that in a healthy lifestyle balance is key and one should ensure that rest is included in that balance. Until next time

Kisses from K

Meal Prep Planner

Hi Loves,

I know I have been away but a break was required as I am in school and my life is in transition. But today I am here to give you a little thing I have created to help you meal plan and prep better. I hope that you enjoy it and that it is helpful in your fitness journey.

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Meal prep planner

 

So click the link for the pdf and prep and plan away. Thanks for stopping by and kisses from K

Weighing not allowed

So do you know when you decide you want to lose weight and so you get on the scale and get that number?

Yeah, that one, the one you’ve been scared to see but you want to know now. Because you have a goal right.

Well write it down and don’t touch it or the scale for the next 3 to 6 months.

See the minute I gave up weighing myself and just used photos ( which I take once a month or every couple months) life took a turn for the better.

I don’t worry about the number and I just eat well and do exercises I enjoy. I rest when my body needs it and focus on being the best me possible and you want to know what happened

 

img_1854.jpg So do you think you really need a scale?

The thing is your body weight is fickle and is affected by a multitude of things, this can then lead to disappointing results.

So step away from the scale focus on your nutrition and get moving in a way you enjoy and the results will come.

 

And it will be no different for you once you are consistent, so don’t be discouraged and get off that darn scale.

Kisses from K

Ready, Set, Reset

The holidays are over and I definitely indulged and enjoyed it, while being mindful when it came to the food I consumed. I ate the same as always for most meals and allowed room for the unhealthy sugar filled flavours of the season. I hope you did as well, there’s nothing like loving and enjoying the food you are eating, and we all know it’s all about moderation.

But I am aware that we all want a reset and to get back into the swing of eating well so….

Here are a few tips and tricks I use:

  • Hydrate, I ensure that I am drinking enough water you should too especially if you indulged in alcohol.
  • Sugar detox, I step away from all refined sugar and some natural sugars leaving only fruits as my sugar source.
  • 👆🏾these were so yummy
  • Get Sweaty, I jump back into the working out and sweating up a storm.
  • Fasting, I also do fasting as it allows my body to reset as well, by fasting I mean extending my fasting period and reducing my eating window.
  • Increase your fibre, during the holiday we tend to over eat, so increasing your fibre fills you up and keeps you fuller for longer.
  • Eat your greens, my final tip is up your veggie intake and pack those micro nutrients in, your body will thank you.

It’s a new year and it’s time to dominate so go forth and live. Take care of yourself, mind, body and spirit.

No excuses

Everyone is super busy it’s really about prioritizing what’s important to you. Also looking at things from a health perspective and not so much a physical or vanity based one.

When it comes to my diet I think in terms or balance so I apply the 90/10 method for some it’s 80/20.

I ensure that 80 to 90% of the time I am putting wholesome foods in my body. Which means nothing processed and predominantly vegetables, fruits, healthy fats, a small amount of grains(not a big fan), healthy carbohydrate options (eg sweet potatoes) and lean protein.

I save my 10% for dinner out of home and often still choose the option of salad and a lean protein or roasted veggies and a lean protein if it is possible.

My mantra that I often repeat to myself in “my body is a temple not a garbage bin” and look at food in that way, would you furnish your temple with garbage and filth.

Step one for me is creating a food budget. Being aware of what you have to spend on food will help you better decide on what to purchase. Next comes planning my meals;I literally sit with pen and paper and write down the things I would love to eat. The categories are breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack. A list of my go too meals are breakfast:

egg muffins with spinach or kale

Gluten-free oatmeal with peanut butter (made with water and has tons of cinnamon and spices and topped with fruit or granola)

Lunch:

Lean protein and salads, roasted veggies or veggie stir fry. I may also have quinoa or brown rice if I wish to or make cauliflower rice which is a low carb option.

Dinner:

Same as lunch but less likely to include rice or quinoa

A few examples 👇🏾

Breakfast:

Lunch

Dinner

Snack

And then from my plan comes meal prepping. Having access to healthy meals at all times makes eating healthy significantly easier. So I put aside a few hours and cook and package my meals for the week. (See my instagram @kendrazeats for meal ideas)

I also try to practise mindful eating. That means I remove all distractions while eating. Through eating mindlessly we tend to over eat and so when you can sit and slowly consume and enjoy your food you can tune into you satiety cues, and stop once your body is full.

Another helpful method is the plate method

However for me, I’m not a big starch consumer so instead I replace the starch with a healthy fat like avocado or split that section between starches and fats. So some roasted sweet potato and avocado for example. I also use smaller plates so as to not overeat, if it’s on the plate you will probably eat it and so if you fill up a smaller plate you eat less and often times are more full.

Also remember to hydrate and you may want to eliminate alcohol and juices from your diet. Especially store bought as they are ladened with sugar and are empty calories. Save alcohol for your 10% and don’t over do it, it’s high carbohydrate content and lack of nutritional value ups the fat content of your body. Keep a water bottle with you at all times that way you can always take a sip. Thirst often fools us into thinking we are hungry and so we grab food when we don’t actually need it.

Avoid eating out of boredom as well, ensure that you are truly hungry and not bored, because boredom is a major culprit.

Lastly ensure you are getting sufficient rest, sleep is vital to the body’s ability to heal, clean and care for itself. So try to shutdown, get away from your devices and allow your body to rest. Lack of sleep also increases ones weight gain.

I hope that this was helpful, comment and let me know what you would like me to share next.

Kisses from K

Gained some and lost it 

Let me preface this by saying after spending two months in St. Vincent and eating my weight in fried chicken, chicken patties and caramel popcorn, I came back to Canada 174lbs, that is 14lbs heavier than I left. If you check my older post (I think I have a photo of me at 173lbs) 

 Start of vacation . 

 End of vacation 
At almost two months back I can happily say I lost 16lbs so I’m down to 158lbs, lower than before I left and I am so happy and healthy. I didn’t do anything crazy I simply kept my diet clean and ate what I needed and no more. I used intermittent fasting because it honestly works for my school schedule and I don’t have to rush to eat in the mornings before class(yes that’s another update I’m back in school) and last but not least I recently started back working out anywhere between 7 to 20 minute 3 to 4 times per week. That’s it. 

I think this is working

Remember when I wrote this post that spoke about over eating and recommended caloric requirement etc., well this is a follow up to that post. Today I am here to talk to you about the methods I have been using to stay on track and also assist me with losing the extra pounds I have packed on.

 

IIFYM which is, If it fits your macros also known as  flexible dieting  has been quite helpful for a lot of people in reaching their weight loss goals, essentially you can eat whatever you wish once it fits within your macro nutrients and caloric limits.

Clean-eating on the other hand is focused on eating real whole food and having a very balanced nutrient rich intake. It ideally would mean that one cannot consume processed food, also it aligns with intuitive eating, that requires you to listen to your bodies satiety cues.

Why am I writing about them?

Well I have discovered that a combination of both methods prove to be the best for me to handle my diet. I am big on eating clean and I enjoy cooking and meal preps etc, however their are times when I eat out with my friends or would like to have my favorite processed item (s) ( especially during that time of the month).

Additionally I was grossly overeating for  sometime now and by tracking my meals through one of the many apps out there I personally use my fitness paland understanding what my body needs to function optimally and in what quantities ,I am able to stay within the recommended daily calorie requirement for my body while fueling it in the correct way.

IIFYM

For if it fits your macros, you are going to need to workout what your required macros are and this can be done manually or using one of the many applications available on line.

For a breakdown of the manual method click here

To have it calculated for you click here

Here’s a look at my macros from the calculator. (Note that they may all provide varying macros so its best to just pick the one that best suits you  and run with it.

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If you are struggling with weight loss or gain, this way could potentially work for you. Keep in mind that a good balance of healthy eating, physical activity as well as mental and emotional care is essential to achieving your fitness goals.

If you are interested in trying this approach please feel free to do so and let me know how its working for you.

Talk to you soon.

Kiss from K

Get fit with me: My weight struggles

Everyone has a health and fitness goal, well lets not say everyone, almost everyone, whether it is to lose weight, gain weight, build muscles or become toned we all have one.

The journey of health and fitness is an individual one that we all struggle with and the hardest part for many is being consistent. We often create these unrealistic plans that do not match our lifestyle thus making it harder to succeed and I for one can attest to that. When I started out at the end of  2015 in preparation for my wedding I was going full speed ahead, because I had a goal to look great in less than an year and I was successful at dropping 13 lbs and I liked how I looked in my dress to some extent, however I was and have not been happy with my weight or my body since 2012.

After moving to Canada my body has not been the same, poor diet, coupled with increased responsibilities and slow metabolism has caused me to struggle constantly with losing weight, beyond those, the habit of emotional eating, which is quite common  doesn’t help.

And you see those hunger and satiety clues, I don’t get those anymore. I have been able to maintain my weight around 160 lbs, which is by far better than 173 lbs but I am still overweight for my frame.

That’s why I have this blog, its my area of accountability and I will be using it to track this journey into weight loss as I attempt to lose 15 lbs and lean out my body in a manner that is maintainable.

Here is a look at my fluctuations over the years:

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At my healthiest (front)
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At my healthiest (side)

This is me at a healthy weight of 145 lbs, I use to eat healthy and exercise by swimming, carrying out body weight exercises as well as workout at the gym. At the time I would fluctuate between 145-149 lbs and that was a great place to be for me in terms of what constitutes a healthy weight.

 

 

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At my heaviest weight of 173 lbs
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pre wedding body 2016

If you have a health and fitness goal and you would like to join me on this journey, I welcome you, this is a healthy, friendly space for me to share not only my progress but the measures I have taken to obtain and maintain the results I receive along the way. Note this is also where the highs and the lows will be shared and where we can have conversation.

I also have a Facebook page where private messages can be sent so feel free to use that as well if the comments are too public.

See you soon

Kisses from K

Baby bend over

If you are looking for someone in amazing yoga poses and doing crazy handstands that is definitely not me. I am the furthest thing from that my yoga practice came out of laziness. See I had tried H.I.I.T (high intensity interval training) and though effective, it was really hard on my joints especially my knees and so I was looking for something low impact I could do from home.

Note that I love variety in exercise but I despise cardio with the exception of swimming, as necessary as it maybe (see I am just like you) but I have no swimming pools close by so I had to find something to do, to get me moving.

Plus, I live in an apartment building so it also needed to be as quiet as possible. I really don’t want anyone banging at my door.

As I said earlier I am not the best but I know how to  follow along with YouTube videos, and that’s  exactly what I did, I pulled up a  Yoga with Adriene video and  started. I still suck at it but since I started doing yoga:

  • I have reduced my stress levels
  • I sleep better
  • I get a great stretch after strength training
  • I just feel relaxed when I am done

If you are curious about some of the benefits you can gain from yoga here’s a link to an article from the Huffington Post.

So if a low impact, stress relieving and meditative workouts is what you are looking for definitely attempt yoga.

Keep in mind that you don’t need to be able to contort yourself into crazy shapes, just take your time and enjoy the process, and see if it is for you and if not at least you can say you tried something new.

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Talk to you soon.

Kisses from K

An aha moment 😏

For the pass couple years regaining my fitness and health has been a true struggle and it wasn’t until this past weekend that I realized what really was the culprit.

I have been over eating, as healthy as the food items are and as nutritious and nourishing as they are too much is still too much. Plus I still ate out with friends and occasionally ordered in meals. 

Reality struck when I was reading what the required caloric intake for the average adult female is. 

That was 2000

Yes only 2000 if you are inactive increasing slightly based on activity levels (keeping in mind  that this changes based on weight and height as well) and I’m sure I was way over that 2000 everyday 

So how did I decide to improve this

Wellllll

Meal Planning!!!!!!!

 I know it’s the answer to everything right !! But truth is  it really works especially if you find yourself eating take out a lot and struggling to lose or gain weight. 

The perks of meal planning is you take the daily guess work out of what to eat and you can chose to cook something new daily or meal prep according to your meal plan. 

Here’s a breakdown of my approach to meal planning. 

First think of how many times you can eat the same meal without being sick of it, for me that’s 2x

Second determine your caloric needs for the day based on physical activity levels. Believe me there are a million apps and website to use for this here’s one you can try⬇️

Calorie calculator
Mine is:

  • 2121 for maintenance 
  • 1697 for fat loss

I’ve decided on 1800 somewhere in the middle where I can slowly lose excess weight and get within the healthy weight range for myself which is 145-150lbs

After determining my caloric needs I decide on my meal breakdowns for the day. I currently eat 5 meal (breakfast, lunch, dinner and two snacks) this will help you determine how calorie dense you wish for each meal to be.

My break down is B- 500 L- 500 D- 400 and Snacks 200 each

 Next get a notebook and write down what you would like to have it doesn’t matter if it’s tacos, pizza just write it down.The look for the healthiest cleanest version of your meal item and document the recipe. 

I am all about a clean healthy diet made of nutrient dense whole foods. 

I then find three or four recipes with my desired caloric range that also is filling and meet the nutrient dense requirement and document the ingredients I need to make them. 

I then head off to the grocery store on the weekend and get my supplies and set aside a few hours on Sunday to meal prep as I find it to be more convenient as when I get home and I’m hungry I don’t want to think about cooking. 
I hope that if you are on a fitness journey this helps you to progress. 

Looking forward to talking to you soon. 

Kisses from K