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Guest Post by Registered Dietitian, Nutrition Consultant, & Certified Personal Trainer Alix Turoff (yay!)

Are y’all sensing a trend here?

I am THRILLED so many talented, educated, fantastic ladies are guest blogging on BEC lately. I hope you are all learning and enjoying as much as I am!

Check out this fun ‘what I eat in a day‘ post by my girl Alix Turoff who has SO MANY letters behind her name it’s incredible. Alix is a registered dietitian, a nutrition consultant, and a certified personal trainer (um, hello she is also my new bestie but doesn’t know it yet). What a resource!

More specific deets about AT:

Alix Turoff is a Registered Dietitian and NASM Certified Personal Trainer. She has a Master’s in Clinical Nutrition from New York University. She lives with her husband and dog, Oliver and believes in a balanced approach when it comes to nutrition and fitness. She doesn’t follow rules and encourages her clients to do what works for them. She runs her private practice completely virtually and maintains her blog where she posts her healthy recipes and nutrition tips!

Enjoy her inspiring photos, super informative notes, and be sure to check out her beautiful website here!

xx,

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6 AM: I usually wake up around 6-6:30 AM. My husband wakes up at that time to go to work and because I work from home, I find that it really helps me to keep this as a routine for myself because it’s easy to lose structure when you work from home.

After I brush my teeth and wash my face, I head to the kitchen and fill up a mason jar with 16 fl oz of ice water with half of a fresh lemon. I then put on a pot of coffee (if I’m drinking hot coffee that day, otherwise I always have cold brew in the fridge) and grab my ice roller from the freezer and head to my vanity.

I find that routines work really well for me and I like to build them i to my day. By starting with 16 fl oz of water first thing in the morning, I find it really sets the tone for the day and it helps me stay on track with my water intake. I will also take my pills and vitamins at this time (in addition to my prescribed medications, I take a Probiotic and Collagen supplement). The collagen supplement is fairly new and it’s something I’m experimenting with. If I don’t see a change after about 2 months, I’ll ditch it.

So I’ll put in my contacts and slather some a vitamin C serum on my face. Then I’ll take my ice roller and roll my face for 3 minutes or so to wake myself up and also stimulate collagen.

620 AM: I’ll usually take my dog out if my husband hasn’t and then I’ll pour myself some coffee. I ALWAYS start my day with coffee. It’s non-negotiable for me. I love the taste and smell of coffee and enjoy the routine of it.

 

7-8 AM: Most days I’ll exercise during this time. I don’t usually eat before I exercise unless I’m going to be exercising later in the day. I find that eating before exercise bothers my stomach so I wait until after!

830 AM: I get in breakfast routines where I’ll eat the same breakfast for a few weeks in a row during the week and change it up on the weekends. Once I get sick of that, I’ll change it up again.

Right now I’ve been keeping it really simple and doing ~6 oz Siggi’s Vanilla yogurt with 1/3 cup bran buds, 1 tbsp chia seed and some fresh berries. Sometimes I’ll swap out the yogurt for cottage cheese. Other go-to breakfast are egg white omelets with GG crackers, a high fiber English Muffin with Peanut Butter and Banana or with mashed avocado and Trader Joe’s everything bagel seasoning.

Between breakfast and lunch I aim to get in another 16 fl oz of water with lemon.

 

1230 PM: By 12:30-1 PM I’m usually ready for lunch. I tend to eat every 3-4 hours so.

Lunch is usually either a salad with protein (usually chicken), some kind of lettuce wrap (like homemade tuna salad in romaine lettuce cups), 4 GG Pizzas (4 GG Crackers + ½ cup Rao’s Tomato basil Sauce + ½ cup 1% Cottage Cheese) and 1 cup Amy’s vegetable soup or a few other variations.

 

 

2 PM: I’ll usually have another cup of coffee around this time. The caffeine doesn’t affect me too much so it’s never really an issue for me. I’ll also make sure to get in another 16 fl oz of water with lemon

4 PM: This is usually when I’m ready for an afternoon snack. If I’m out and about, I’ll throw Nugo Fiber D’lish bar in my bag. Otherwise I might have some popcorn with a string cheese, fresh fruit with peanut butter or if I didn’t have GG pizzas at lunch, I might make them in the afternoon! I also really like to do smoothies with protein or collagen.

 

7 PM: During the week, my husband and I usually eat dinner around 7 PM. I probably have wine ~3 nights per week. Dinner is usually my highest carb meal so I’ll usually incorporate either some rice, chickpea pasta, tortillas, or sweet potato. This just works for me so I go with it. I’m all about flexibility and doing what feels right for you.

One of my favorite meals to make is chicken lettuce cups with Trader Joe’s chicken fried rice!

I’m also usually working on my last 16 fl oz of water with dinner and after. That way I get my 64 fl oz covered and if I’m craving more water, I’ll have it!

 

830 PM: 90% of the time I like to have something sweet after dinner. I wait until I digest my dinner so I can see how I feel. I listen to my body and if I’m craving something sweet, it’s usually dark chocolate with sea salt or if I want something salty, I’ll usually go with popcorn!

 

Guest Post: Fitness & Nutrition Coach Tiffany Payne

I am so excited to collaborate with this beautiful human! Tiffany is super generous to share with us what she ate over a three day period. You guys KNOW I LOVE seeing what and how other people eat and my girl does not disappoint. Her “diet” is doable, delicious, and HEALTHY. Thanks TP, can’t wait to work together again in the future! xoxo

About Tiffany

Tiffany is the creative director and founder of Dumbbells n’ Donuts blog.

She is an online fitness and nutrition coach, helping people become the best version of themselves in a short 8-12 weeks!

On top of being a full time blogger and coach, she is a full time ICU registered nurse with double bachelor degrees in Exercise Science and Nursing.

Her fiancé is a Doctor of Chiropractic who often collaborates with her to always bring the most up to date and evidence based practice posts!

 

Transparency

Being as transparent as I can is really important to me. I’m not vegan, I’m not gluten-free, I don’t follow a strict diet, and I don’t track my food.

I am VERY much an intuitive eater. I think that if you are just wanting to maintain, you’re happy with your weight/body, or just really know your body and what you respond well to then it’s unnecessary to track or diet. It’s not healthy to be constantly worrying about what you’re eating.

 

The Way I Eat When I’m Not ‘Dieting’

I’m also very big into following the 80/20 rule regarding nutrition and diets. The majority of what I put into my body is food that will really nourish me and help me towards my goals. But i’m not afraid to go out to dinner, grab a drink with my friends, and just really enjoy living my life without having to count every calorie that goes in my body – NO THANK YOU!

Here is what I ate within a 3 day span:

Nutrition – DAY ONE

Meal 1:

  • 2 GG Crackers
  • 2 tbsp natural peanut butter
  • 2  whole eggs
  • Onions + tomatoes in eggs
  • 1 cup mint green tea

Meal 2:

  • Small cup of blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries
  • My Peanut Butter Protein Shake
    • 2 tbsp natural PB
    • 1 scoop chocolate protein
    • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
    • 3 ice cubes
    • 1 banana
    • 1 scoop maca

Meal 3:

  • Trader Joe’s Chicken Burrito Bowl
  • 1/2 cup low fat cottage cheese

Meal 4:

  • 4 oz Ground Beef
  • Mustard & reduced sugar ketchup
  • 1 whole wheat bun
  • 1 oz oven baked Cheetos

Meal 5:

  • 1 cup birthday cake halo top
  • 1 cup chamomile tea

 

Nutrition – DAY TWO

Meal 1:

  • 3 whole eggs
  • 1/2 cup Kodiak cakes
  • 2 tbsp natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup of coffee

Meal 2:

  • My Green Smoothie
    • 1 cup spinach
    • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk
    • 3/4 cup pineapple tidbits from Trader Joes
    • 1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
    • Ice

Meal 3:

  • 2 GG crackers
  • 1 packet tuna salad

Meal 4:

  • Small Seafood Pho (Crab, Scallops, Shrimp, Squid, & Veggies in it)
  • 2 steamed pork dumplings
  • 2 squares Trader Joe’s chocolates

Meal 5:

  • 3/4 up cinnamon chex
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 scoop chocolate protein shake
  • 1 cup chamomile tea

 

Nutrition – DAY THREE

Meal 1:

  • 1/2 cup steel cut oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • Sweetened with stevia
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1 cup decaf peppermint tea

Meal 2:

  • Clean Juice Avocado Toast
  • Clean Juice Coffee smoothie

Meal 3:

  •  1 oz roasted & salted almonds
  • 1 lightly salted rice cake
  • 1 tbsp natural peanut butter

Meal 4:

  • 2 oz protein plus pasta
  • 30g lite northern Italian dressing
  • 1 avocado
  • 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 2 squares Trader Joe’s chocolate
  • 1 lightly salted rice cake
  • 1 tbsp natural peanut butter

Meal 5:

  • 1 scoop vanilla whey protein
  • 1 scoop maca

Thanks again Tiffany!
Happy New Year!

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New Year, New Resolution?

Ugh, IKR?!

Resolutions are the worst! Or are they?

My problem is I hype myself up for some unrealistic goal, fail pretty quickly (hello January 10th-ish), and then say WHATEVER and forget all about what and why I wanted to do.

Dumb.

So let’s not make resolutions. Let’s make some commitments to ourselves (thanks for sparking this Jo-Elsa!).

For example, I want to start cooking at home for my family more and dining out less. It’s healthier, it’s more economical, and for us it’s more fun! We can be wild and crazy and throw our food (looking at you 17 month old Aubrey) and no one stares, no one cares, and I have three dogs who will happily lick up the mess on the floor. Win win.

I am committing to cooking at home more! Not X amount of times a week because that is setting me up to fail but MORE, that I can do.

I also want to up my blogging game! I want to connect with you all weekly and share my clean recipes, healthy habits, #momlife, and lifestyle tips. You heard it hear first and help me stick to it! Message me ANYTHING! What do you want to know more about? I say it ALL THE TIME: I am not an expert but I love to research and I have some super educated friends that are always willing to help us out!

I encourage you to set a goal, stick to it as best you can, and if you veer of course…hop back on and keep it moving.

xx,

rachel signature

GUEST POST: Sobering Moments of Commitment

 

Sobriety for any defined period of time was a foreign concept for me. I’m a single, thirty-something year old event coordinator living in the heart of Richmond City. Let’s be real. In addition to the fact that I was raised in a family of unabashed drinkers, part of my job is keeping a pulse on local talent and night life. In all fairness, slamming a few cocktails at the local hot spot while scouting the latest band could almost be considered “field research”. You know, par for the course. No really – I’m just that dedicated to my work.

When my friend, Peter, decided to hop on the wagon for 90 days, I was impressed. Impressed by his will power to resist a drink when offered, but also impressed with this idea of making a commitment to himself and seeing it through. When was the last time I fulfilled a commitment to myself? I make and keep promises to others all the time, but when did I last make a promise to myself and actually keep it? The truth is that I’m pretty bad at it. Monday’s declaration to eat healthy and work out for the week would usually end with Friday’s acknowledgement of two days at the gym while I patiently wait for the delivery guy to show up with my pie.

My neighborhood in Richmond, Virginia.

 

No alcohol. Maybe I could do this too. I considered my lifestyle. It wasn’t that I drank every night or that I felt like my drinking had become a problem, but alcohol was always an option. It didn’t always have to be a blurry night of shots and dancing. Disclaimer; those are always super fun. It could just be a glass of wine at dinner or an invitation to happy hour with a group of professionals. Why say no if you don’t have to, right? This wasn’t about depriving myself of something that I felt like I needed. It was about having a goal, defining a period of time, challenging myself and seeing it through. Three months seemed like a bit of a stretch though. (I’m a realist.) I settled on 30 days of no alcohol.

I’m not going to bore you with my own version of the blogs that we’ve all read before – “I stopped drinking alcohol and this is what happened”. Instead, I am just going to give it to you straight. After just two weeks, my skin was glowing, I was sleeping soundly through the night, I had tons of energy during the day, I was feeling svelte in my clothes and I was super focused.

I think the most difficult thing to convey is the comparison of one’s state of mind when alcohol is removed from the equation. I wasn’t an unhappy person before this experiment began, but boy was I feeling on top of the world these days! I always considered myself to be hyper aware of my surroundings, tapping into my natural intuition and easily navigating through intense social situations or conflicts at work. The sober me felt like a superhero! My senses were heightened, my instincts were sharper and finding resolution to conflicts was a walk in the park. Everything was so much clearer! Had I been living in a permanent fog before?

 

Perhaps the biggest take-away was realizing that the very “medicine” that I had used to cope with my anxiety was in fact causing my anxiety or at the very least, making it much worse. Years of suffering with waves of anxiety were often treated with alcohol. Feeling down? Have a drink. Stressed out with work? Have a drink. It’s no secret that this method only offers temporary relief and often makes the symptoms worse the following day. These feelings didn’t stop from surfacing completely, but committing to no alcohol forced me to actually process what was making me anxious and get over it, rather than drowning my feelings out with a swift tilt of a glass. I was resolving my own problems! Simply put, you don’t need alcohol to cope when there’s nothing with which to cope.

My notes from a transformation class I took earlier this year.

As the holidays approach, we are faced with over indulgence and temptation, only to be met with the idea of resolutions and the promise of a new year. We tell ourselves that we’re going to be different. That, this year we’re going to change. I’m going to work out every day. I’m going to eat salads for the next six months. I’m only going to drink on the weekends. These goals that we set for ourselves aren’t always in line with our lifestyles and are often laced with the unrealistic staples of perfection that would be difficult for anyone to attain. It lasts for a little while, but we give up pretty easily. Then, we so effortlessly slip back into the lifestyles that make us comfortable. We make excuses for ourselves so that we don’t have to be accountable. I don’t have time to go to the gym today. Only 20 minutes for lunch, so it will have to be the drive-thru. I was so stressed with work, happy hour turned into ‘last call’. We do this because we need to feel okay about letting ourselves down.

 

 

Fulfilling my 30 day commitment to not drink alcohol didn’t result in a major lifestyle change and it didn’t magically turn me into a demi-god, but it taught me some fundamental things that can translate to my day-to-day life. I can make a commitment to myself. I value myself enough to see it through. I’m worth it and I can be proud of my accomplishment. If we are culturally predisposed to a cycle of over indulgence and setting unrealistic goals that lead to lies to justify our failures – all just so that we can feel okay – I think it’s paramount to tell you that the benefits of fulfilling this small commitment to myself have made me feel so much better than just okay.

 

 

As we reflect on this year and enter into a new, let’s take a hard look at what we’re really committed to. Are we really committed to the betterment of ourselves? Or are we simply committed to being noncommittal? In this new year, let’s set realistic goals for ourselves. Let’s love ourselves enough to follow through. Let’s compare all of the major personal gains to the small sacrifice that we’ve made. Let’s challenge ourselves to be committed to commitment.

Jo-Elsa Jordan

 

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