I’ve had a number of people ask me about my rule of only working out on an empty stomach. Most people are sceptical by this and think that my blood sugar must drop during my session causing me to feel weak and shaky before I’m even finished my reps. This couldn’t be further from the truth, actually.
When I head to the gym I am usually feeling hungry and sometimes my stomach is even rumbling but the minute I start my warmup that all goes away. I’m filled with adrenaline instead as well as a burst of endorphins. I’m not thinking about food. No part of my body is at this point. Why this happens is kind of a mystery to me but I have learned a few things while doing research on the concept of a fasting exercise routine.
According to Dr. Mercola at fitness.mercola.com when you exercise while fasting intermittently it essentially forces your body to shed fat, as your body’s fat burning processes are controlled by your sympathetic nervous system (SNS), and your SNS is activated by exercise and lack of food.
Something you need to take note of, however, which is the situation in my case, is if you are lifting weights (even if your lifting with a machine) it’s important to eat within 30 minutes after your workout, and your meal should include fast-assimilating protein such as Whey (Rice and pea isolate proteins if you’re Vegan)
So there you have it. Maximum fat burning at your fingertips and more importantly a little bit of new knowledge. Whether you decide to give it a try or not is entirely up to you but now at least you know the science behind it.
Just because I’m feeling random today I’ve decided to share what it is I have in my gym bag on any given workout day. The contents rarely varies as I’m a pure creature of habit so here it is, in all it’s gym bag glory!
A Water bottle (24oz)
This is the bottle I am using currently. It has the company logo I’m working for and it’s a pretty decent bottle. It fits on all the cup holders at the gym and has a straw which is a huge bonus for me because i tend to drink more water with a straw, though I’m not really sure why. I make sure I drink all 24 oz before I leave the gym.
Saucony sneakers are the only type of sneaker I buy anymore. They are beyond amazing and the Everrun line is so lightweight it’s like you aren’t even wearing anything at all.
I got these Cylo Cobra Bluetooth Wireless Earbuds in my fall FabFitFun box last year. I’d been putting off buying a pair so I was super excited to find them. And let me tell you, bluetooth headphones are sooooo much better than regular headphones while working out at the gym. I cannot stress this enough. Get a pair, you won’t regret it.
For post workout skin hydration I use Garnier Skinactive Hydrating Facial Mist. Because I don’t take a shower till I get home and because my face barely perspires during my workouts, I use this spray to help keep it hydrated till I can get home to give myself a good wash. Additionally, this is also really great to use on your face post shower too.
I feel like this one is kind of self explanatory. My immune system took a few months to get adjusted to the new cluster of germs found in a gym. I sanitize my hands frequently while there and as I’m leaving. President’s Choice has some really nice smelling ones if you aren’t near a Bath & Bodyworks.
I don’t always need a brace but there are some days when one of my ankles doesn’t want to cooperate with me (long story involving a bad car accident in my teens) On those days I use a standard elastic ankle brace that can be found at pretty much any drug store.
The type of bar I bring with me varies from each visit but these are two of my favourites. I tend to stick to high protein, high fats, low carbs when it comes to choosing a protein bar. I also like keeping with natural healthy ingredients I can pronounce.
Something happened to me last week that opened a door to my past. A deep and dark precipice that threatened to let me drop off it’s edge with no remorse. And it broke me.
It was a moment of rejection. A painful reminder that not everyone will like me even when I’m the best version of me I can possibly be. Suffice it to say that the after-effects of this incident left me reeling for days and I couldn’t gather my bearings. I found myself filled with embarrassment for being shunned in front of others, then dread at the idea that I was no longer liked by this individual. I pushed the thoughts aside till the next day when my mind and heart suddenly filled with crippling anxiety. I spent the day in a daze, struggling to re-route my thoughts every time they would resurface. I made comfort food, had a movie night with my child, and for all intense and purposes “forgot” about the day before.
But I didn’t forget.
The next day– two days after the initial incident– I had my very first “angry” gym session. The workout was vigorous and aggressive as my body tried to release what my mind would not. After all, I wasn’t writing anymore, how could my mind possibly find a way to sort through the pain?
And then I slept. I slept the day away and come the following morning I felt almost normal again. Not happy but not devastated either. I was past it. Or at least I was past the initial blow.
I meditated on this and asked myself, why was I letting something so small and irrelevant get to me in this way? I’m a strong woman who doesn’t place her self value in what people think of her. And yet at that moment, and days afterward, I was 12 again… And it was horrifying.
So the writing bug returns as a symptom of childhood insecurity and bullying. It never occurred to me that writing was necessarily that essential to my self esteem. I mean, I knew it kept me calm and sorted out some muddled thoughts, but I never truly understood to what degree it played in my self-preservation, not to mention my sanity. But as it turns out, it’s more important than I ever gave it credit for and so I’ve come to the conclusion that it can’t go away.
I deal with pain through words. It’s not what my gift was given to me for but it’s what I use it for, even if I didn’t realize it. So as my therapy and as my essence the words have to come back.
Living with bi-polar means I don’t have control over my emotions; they fluctuate and are erratic. Medication can calm the ups and downs, but there isn’t anything out there that can really harness a sense of control. Except creating worlds.
When I’m writing elaborate fiction I AM in control. That’s the whole point. Without it, I flounder. And so, in spite of trying to push my gift aside, It’s been proven– quite disturbingly, I might add– that writing is my ultimate self care and I couldn’t ditch it even if I wanted to.
One month ago today I made the conscious decision to remove dieting from my life once and for all. A big decision for me as recently I’ve come to realize that I’m a chronic dieter. I’ve been a chronic dieter for all of my adult life and sadly, for most of my teen life too.
For those who don’t know what chronic dieting is, it’s an eating disorder of sorts, that causes individuals who suffer from it to either always be dieting or, to be yo-yo-ing back and forth from dieting and living an unhealthy binging lifestyle.
The first thing I needed to do in order to train myself to stop the cycle was to stop weighing myself entirely. That was the hardest and I’m still struggling with it every day. The second thing I needed to do was to teach myself to eat healthy even though I wasn’t weighing myself. That wasn’t as difficult because I actually enjoy eating healthy now and can’t really eat unhealthy meal after unhealthy meal anymore without feeling it in my mood as well as feeling the sluggishness in my body. I guess you could say that I’m much more mindful about what food does to me now and that helps me make better choices.
Another thing I’ve done is increase my protein intake and I’ve done that for two important reasons: (1) I’m muscle building and protein is essential for building strong and healthy muscles; and (2) protein keeps me fuller longer which, during busy work days, comes in handy. I’ve also learned about the importance of complex carbohydrates for MY body type and what kinds of macronutrients I should be putting more emphasis on in my diet. All this information I’ve been learning has been exciting and eye-opening for me because it truly is not about the weight anymore. It’s about feeling good and fitting my clothes comfortably and being happy with my food decisions.
Because I don’t want to feel bad about how far I’ve come anymore. I don’t want to be beating myself up over those 15 final pounds I’ve led myself to believe makes all the difference. How much I’ve transformed in the last year and a half is amazing and should be celebrated. I shouldn’t be so hard on myself about not reaching a perceived idea of what I deemed to be an ideal weight. HEALTH ISN’T A NUMBER. It’s being able to live your life to the fullest; it’s loving yourself unconditionally; and it’s freeing yourself from anything that holds you down. HEALTH IS HAPPINESS!
I’m in love with steak. For those who don’t know that, well, now you know. At home we usually eat steak from wild game that’s popular in our area: the good old Canadian Moose. It’s as natural as meat comes in this area and much leaner than beef.
The downfall to eating moose steak, however, is the fact that the meat is often tough and the flavour sometimes quite wild. But there is an easy remedy to that and I’m about to share my secret recipe with you all. So listen in!
Note: this recipe is good to use with any kind of red meat including beef. I created it for making the best of my moose meat, but it is amazing on other meats as well.
- 1/3 cup Soya sauce
- 2 TBS Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 cup EVOO
- 1/8 cup Apple Cider vinegar
- 3 TBS Dried basil or oregano (I prefer oregano)
- 1 TBS garlic powder
- 1 TBS yellow mustard
- 1 tsp black pepper
Blend till visibly creamy in magic bullet or regular blender. The recipe makes enough to marinade 2 to 3 large steaks in a freezer bag.
Marinade 2 to 6 hours before grilling or frying.