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Don’t Eat Your Workouts Back with Guest Blogger Kristen James


Guest Blogger Kristen James is back this week with some great advice for us on how to avoid eating our workouts away. We're all guilty of feeling like we can "reward" ourselves after a hard gym session. I know, because I've done it a million times. In today's blog, Kristen shares some numbers that will make you think twice about what you're putting in your mouth and provides a few easy tips to avoid overeating and re-consuming all the calories you just worked so hard to burn off.

Don't Eat Your Workouts Back
By Kristen James

Are you sabotaging your workouts and not even realizing it? Are you working out like a dog everyday and not seeing a noticeable change in your body? Well, then this is for YOU! I grew up listening to Jack LaLanne telling me that exercise is “king” and nutrition is “queen”. Although he was a leader in his time and brought exercise and health into so many lives, he had it backwards. Nutrition is KING, and exercise is QUEEN. Let me remind you that both exercise and nutrition together are rulers of your body and overall well-being. Yet, why is it that so many of us try to exercise away a bad diet? What I’m here to tell you is...STOP! Impossible you say? Hey, we all know by now that exercise stimulates our metabolism making us feel hungrier throughout the day. Even though the increased metabolic rate from regular exercise is a good thing, over indulging in empty calories in order to satiate your hunger is not.

You're body needs quality calories to perform to it's potential. A diet filled with sugary breakfasts, frozen yogurt lunches, and lettuce for dinner leaves your muscles with nothing to use to fuel tomorrow's workout. In turn, you won't be able to push through your routine with the strength to achieve your goals. Worse than that, your body will hold onto that extra layer of fat you’re trying to get rid of as a survival mechanism against the lack of nutrient-rich calories. So next time you reach for that lame snack or quick meal, think again. Here are some cold hard numbers that will raise your heart rate just reading them.

If you eat: 2 handfuls of Gummy Bears = 30 minutes of cycling to burn it off
If you eat: 2 average sized cookies = 25 minutes of weight training
If you eat: 1 pint of ice cream = 1 full hour of jumping rope
If you drink: 2 vodkas on the rocks = 40 minutes of jogging
If you eat: 1 slice of pepperoni pizza = 45 minutes of swimming
If you eat: 3 ounces of potato chips = 1 hour of singles tennis

We reach for empty calories for so many reasons. Time is often a factor. Who has the time to chop, juice, or steam everything that goes into their mouths? Or how about the economics of food? Its expensive to buy organic products. But the biggest excuse I hear from my clients is,  "I deserve this! I work out so hard every day".

Well guess what? You're eating back most of your workout, if not all of it.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

1. Keep the empty calories out of your home. It’s easier to say no in the store than to say "no" every time you open the kitchen cabinet.

2. Fall in love with your food. Eat what you love. If juicing your fruits and veggies isn't for you, don't do it.

3. Find what works for you. I like to cook my meals on Sunday and store them in the fridge so it's easy for me to pack my lunch in the morning before work—it’s already done!

4. Allow yourself one "cheat day,” not one "cheat" every day. I love a great dessert on Saturday night after a decadent meal out!

So next time you're pushing through a hard interval or gasping for air after a great class, think to yourself, "do I really want to ruin all of this hard work?"

Please, don't eat your workout back!

Signing Off Making It Count,
Renee & Kristen

Kristen James is the CEO & Founder of Kristen James Fitness, LLC, and is currently the Area Fitness Manager for the NY Metro Area for Equinox Fitness Clubs. Kristen is passionate about building a brand on social media, with a Youtube channel devoted to videos of her original workout programs. She is also an avid tweeter where she provides her followers tips on nutrition, wellness and motivation. Kristen has appeared on ABC New York, CBS New York and FOX 5. Kristen holds a Master’s Degree from Hofstra University in Physical Education with a concentration in Health and Wellness and has an undergraduate degree in Psychology.

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